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Sample records for cis-regulatory element zrs

  1. Epistatic Interactions in the Arabinose Cis-Regulatory Element

    PubMed Central

    Lagator, Mato; Igler, Claudia; Moreno, Anaísa B.; Guet, Călin C.; Bollback, Jonathan P.

    2016-01-01

    Changes in gene expression are an important mode of evolution; however, the proximate mechanism of these changes is poorly understood. In particular, little is known about the effects of mutations within cis binding sites for transcription factors, or the nature of epistatic interactions between these mutations. Here, we tested the effects of single and double mutants in two cis binding sites involved in the transcriptional regulation of the Escherichia coli araBAD operon, a component of arabinose metabolism, using a synthetic system. This system decouples transcriptional control from any posttranslational effects on fitness, allowing a precise estimate of the effect of single and double mutations, and hence epistasis, on gene expression. We found that epistatic interactions between mutations in the araBAD cis-regulatory element are common, and that the predominant form of epistasis is negative. The magnitude of the interactions depended on whether the mutations are located in the same or in different operator sites. Importantly, these epistatic interactions were dependent on the presence of arabinose, a native inducer of the araBAD operon in vivo, with some interactions changing in sign (e.g., from negative to positive) in its presence. This study thus reveals that mutations in even relatively simple cis-regulatory elements interact in complex ways such that selection on the level of gene expression in one environment might perturb regulation in the other environment in an unpredictable and uncorrelated manner. PMID:26589997

  2. Epistatic Interactions in the Arabinose Cis-Regulatory Element.

    PubMed

    Lagator, Mato; Igler, Claudia; Moreno, Anaísa B; Guet, Călin C; Bollback, Jonathan P

    2016-03-01

    Changes in gene expression are an important mode of evolution; however, the proximate mechanism of these changes is poorly understood. In particular, little is known about the effects of mutations within cis binding sites for transcription factors, or the nature of epistatic interactions between these mutations. Here, we tested the effects of single and double mutants in two cis binding sites involved in the transcriptional regulation of the Escherichia coli araBAD operon, a component of arabinose metabolism, using a synthetic system. This system decouples transcriptional control from any posttranslational effects on fitness, allowing a precise estimate of the effect of single and double mutations, and hence epistasis, on gene expression. We found that epistatic interactions between mutations in the araBAD cis-regulatory element are common, and that the predominant form of epistasis is negative. The magnitude of the interactions depended on whether the mutations are located in the same or in different operator sites. Importantly, these epistatic interactions were dependent on the presence of arabinose, a native inducer of the araBAD operon in vivo, with some interactions changing in sign (e.g., from negative to positive) in its presence. This study thus reveals that mutations in even relatively simple cis-regulatory elements interact in complex ways such that selection on the level of gene expression in one environment might perturb regulation in the other environment in an unpredictable and uncorrelated manner. PMID:26589997

  3. Study of Cis-regulatory Elements in the Ascidian Ciona intestinalis.

    PubMed

    Irvine, Steven Q

    2013-03-01

    The ascidian (sea squirt) C. intestinalis has become an important model organism for the study of cis-regulation. This is largely due to the technology that has been developed for assessing cis-regulatory activity through the use of transient reporter transgenes introduced into fertilized eggs. This technique allows the rapid and inexpensive testing of endogenous or altered DNA for regulatory activity in vivo. This review examines evidence that C. intestinalis cis-regulatory elements are located more closely to coding regions than in other model organisms. I go on to compare the organization of cis-regulatory elements and conserved non-coding sequences in Ciona, mammals, and other deuterostomes for three representative C.intestinalis genes, Pax6, FoxAa, and the DlxA-B cluster, along with homologs in the other species. These comparisons point out some of the similarities and differences between cis-regulatory elements and their study in the various model organisms. Finally, I provide illustrations of how C. intestinalis lends itself to detailed study of the structure of cis-regulatory elements, which have led, and promise to continue to lead, to important insights into the fundamentals of transcriptional regulation. PMID:23997651

  4. Evolution of Cis-Regulatory Elements and Regulatory Networks in Duplicated Genes of Arabidopsis1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Xu Qiu; Adams, Keith L.

    2015-01-01

    Plant genomes contain large numbers of duplicated genes that contribute to the evolution of new functions. Following duplication, genes can exhibit divergence in their coding sequence and their expression patterns. Changes in the cis-regulatory element landscape can result in changes in gene expression patterns. High-throughput methods developed recently can identify potential cis-regulatory elements on a genome-wide scale. Here, we use a recent comprehensive data set of DNase I sequencing-identified cis-regulatory binding sites (footprints) at single-base-pair resolution to compare binding sites and network connectivity in duplicated gene pairs in Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana). We found that duplicated gene pairs vary greatly in their cis-regulatory element architecture, resulting in changes in regulatory network connectivity. Whole-genome duplicates (WGDs) have approximately twice as many footprints in their promoters left by potential regulatory proteins than do tandem duplicates (TDs). The WGDs have a greater average number of footprint differences between paralogs than TDs. The footprints, in turn, result in more regulatory network connections between WGDs and other genes, forming denser, more complex regulatory networks than shown by TDs. When comparing regulatory connections between duplicates, WGDs had more pairs in which the two genes are either partially or fully diverged in their network connections, but fewer genes with no network connections than the TDs. There is evidence of younger TDs and WGDs having fewer unique connections compared with older duplicates. This study provides insights into cis-regulatory element evolution and network divergence in duplicated genes. PMID:26474639

  5. From Cis-Regulatory Elements to Complex RNPs and Back

    PubMed Central

    Gebauer, Fátima; Preiss, Thomas; Hentze, Matthias W.

    2012-01-01

    Messenger RNAs (mRNAs), the templates for translation, have evolved to harbor abundant cis-acting sequences that affect their posttranscriptional fates. These elements are frequently located in the untranslated regions and serve as binding sites for trans-acting factors, RNA-binding proteins, and/or small non-coding RNAs. This article provides a systematic synopsis of cis-acting elements, trans-acting factors, and the mechanisms by which they affect translation. It also highlights recent technical advances that have ushered in the era of transcriptome-wide studies of the ribonucleoprotein complexes formed by mRNAs and their trans-acting factors. PMID:22751153

  6. Dynamic SPR monitoring of yeast nuclear protein binding to a cis-regulatory element

    SciTech Connect

    Mao, Grace; Brody, James P.

    2007-11-09

    Gene expression is controlled by protein complexes binding to short specific sequences of DNA, called cis-regulatory elements. Expression of most eukaryotic genes is controlled by dozens of these elements. Comprehensive identification and monitoring of these elements is a major goal of genomics. In pursuit of this goal, we are developing a surface plasmon resonance (SPR) based assay to identify and monitor cis-regulatory elements. To test whether we could reliably monitor protein binding to a regulatory element, we immobilized a 16 bp region of Saccharomyces cerevisiae chromosome 5 onto a gold surface. This 16 bp region of DNA is known to bind several proteins and thought to control expression of the gene RNR1, which varies through the cell cycle. We synchronized yeast cell cultures, and then sampled these cultures at a regular interval. These samples were processed to purify nuclear lysate, which was then exposed to the sensor. We found that nuclear protein binds this particular element of DNA at a significantly higher rate (as compared to unsynchronized cells) during G1 phase. Other time points show levels of DNA-nuclear protein binding similar to the unsynchronized control. We also measured the apparent association complex of the binding to be 0.014 s{sup -1}. We conclude that (1) SPR-based assays can monitor DNA-nuclear protein binding and that (2) for this particular cis-regulatory element, maximum DNA-nuclear protein binding occurs during G1 phase.

  7. BLSSpeller: exhaustive comparative discovery of conserved cis-regulatory elements

    PubMed Central

    De Witte, Dieter; Van de Velde, Jan; Decap, Dries; Van Bel, Michiel; Audenaert, Pieter; Demeester, Piet; Dhoedt, Bart; Vandepoele, Klaas; Fostier, Jan

    2015-01-01

    Motivation: The accurate discovery and annotation of regulatory elements remains a challenging problem. The growing number of sequenced genomes creates new opportunities for comparative approaches to motif discovery. Putative binding sites are then considered to be functional if they are conserved in orthologous promoter sequences of multiple related species. Existing methods for comparative motif discovery usually rely on pregenerated multiple sequence alignments, which are difficult to obtain for more diverged species such as plants. As a consequence, misaligned regulatory elements often remain undetected. Results: We present a novel algorithm that supports both alignment-free and alignment-based motif discovery in the promoter sequences of related species. Putative motifs are exhaustively enumerated as words over the IUPAC alphabet and screened for conservation using the branch length score. Additionally, a confidence score is established in a genome-wide fashion. In order to take advantage of a cloud computing infrastructure, the MapReduce programming model is adopted. The method is applied to four monocotyledon plant species and it is shown that high-scoring motifs are significantly enriched for open chromatin regions in Oryza sativa and for transcription factor binding sites inferred through protein-binding microarrays in O.sativa and Zea mays. Furthermore, the method is shown to recover experimentally profiled ga2ox1-like KN1 binding sites in Z.mays. Availability and implementation: BLSSpeller was written in Java. Source code and manual are available at http://bioinformatics.intec.ugent.be/blsspeller Contact: Klaas.Vandepoele@psb.vib-ugent.be or jan.fostier@intec.ugent.be Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. PMID:26254488

  8. The identification of cis-regulatory elements: A review from a machine learning perspective.

    PubMed

    Li, Yifeng; Chen, Chih-Yu; Kaye, Alice M; Wasserman, Wyeth W

    2015-12-01

    The majority of the human genome consists of non-coding regions that have been called junk DNA. However, recent studies have unveiled that these regions contain cis-regulatory elements, such as promoters, enhancers, silencers, insulators, etc. These regulatory elements can play crucial roles in controlling gene expressions in specific cell types, conditions, and developmental stages. Disruption to these regions could contribute to phenotype changes. Precisely identifying regulatory elements is key to deciphering the mechanisms underlying transcriptional regulation. Cis-regulatory events are complex processes that involve chromatin accessibility, transcription factor binding, DNA methylation, histone modifications, and the interactions between them. The development of next-generation sequencing techniques has allowed us to capture these genomic features in depth. Applied analysis of genome sequences for clinical genetics has increased the urgency for detecting these regions. However, the complexity of cis-regulatory events and the deluge of sequencing data require accurate and efficient computational approaches, in particular, machine learning techniques. In this review, we describe machine learning approaches for predicting transcription factor binding sites, enhancers, and promoters, primarily driven by next-generation sequencing data. Data sources are provided in order to facilitate testing of novel methods. The purpose of this review is to attract computational experts and data scientists to advance this field. PMID:26499213

  9. Variation in vertebrate cis-regulatory elements in evolution and disease.

    PubMed

    Douglas, Adam Thomas; Hill, Robert D

    2014-01-01

    Much of the genetic information that drives animal diversity lies within the vast non-coding regions of the genome. Multi-species sequence conservation in non-coding regions of the genome flags important regulatory elements and more recently, techniques that look for functional signatures predicted for regulatory sequences have added to the identification of thousands more. For some time, biologists have argued that changes in cis-regulatory sequences creates the basic genetic framework for evolutionary change. Recent advances support this notion and show that there is extensive genomic variability in non-coding regulatory elements associated with trait variation, speciation and disease. PMID:25764334

  10. Variation in Vertebrate Cis-Regulatory Elements in Evolution and Disease.

    PubMed

    Douglas, Adam T; Hill, Robert E

    2014-05-01

    Much of the genetic information that drives animal diversity lies within the vast non-coding regions of the genome. Multi-species sequence conservation in non-coding regions of the genome flags important regulatory elements and more recently, techniques that look for functional signatures predicted for regulatory sequences have added to the identification of thousands more. For some time, biologists have argued that changes in cis-regulatory sequences creates the basic genetic framework for evolutionary change. Recent advances support this notion and show that there is extensive genomic variability in non-coding regulatory elements associated with trait variation, speciation and disease. PMID:24802895

  11. Variation in Vertebrate Cis-Regulatory Elements in Evolution and Disease

    PubMed Central

    Douglas, Adam Thomas; Hill, Robert E

    2014-01-01

    Much of the genetic information that drives animal diversity lies within the vast non-coding regions of the genome. Multi-species sequence conservation in non-coding regions of the genome flags important regulatory elements and more recently, techniques that look for functional signatures predicted for regulatory sequences have added to the identification of thousands more. For some time, biologists have argued that changes in cis-regulatory sequences creates the basic genetic framework for evolutionary change. Recent advances support this notion and show that there is extensive genomic variability in non-coding regulatory elements associated with trait variation, speciation and disease. PMID:25764334

  12. Quantitative Analysis of Cis-Regulatory Element Activity Using Synthetic Promoters in Transgenic Plants.

    PubMed

    Benn, Geoffrey; Dehesh, Katayoon

    2016-01-01

    Synthetic promoters, introduced stably or transiently into plants, are an invaluable tool for the identification of functional regulatory elements and the corresponding transcription factor(s) that regulate the amplitude, spatial distribution, and temporal patterns of gene expression. Here, we present a protocol describing the steps required to identify and characterize putative cis-regulatory elements. These steps include application of computational tools to identify putative elements, construction of a synthetic promoter upstream of luciferase, identification of transcription factors that regulate the element, testing the functionality of the element introduced transiently and/or stably into the species of interest followed by high-throughput luciferase screening assays, and subsequent data processing and statistical analysis. PMID:27557758

  13. [Identification and mapping of cis-regulatory elements within long genomic sequences].

    PubMed

    Akopov, S B; Chernov, I P; Vetchinova, A S; Bulanenkova, S S; Nikolaev, L G

    2007-01-01

    The publication of the human and other metazoan genome sequences opened up the possibility for mapping and analysis of genomic regulatory elements. Unfortunately, experimental data on genomic positions of such sequences as enhancers, silencers, insulators, transcription terminators, and replication origins are very limited, especially at the whole genome level. As most genomic regulatory elements (e.g., enhancers) are generally gene-, tissue-, or cell-specific, the prediction of these elements in silico is often ambiguous. Therefore, the development of high-throughput experimental approaches for identification and mapping of genomic functional elements is highly desirable. In this review we discuss novel approaches to high-throughput experimental identification of mammalian genomes cis-regulatory elements which is a necessary step toward the complete genome annotation. PMID:18240562

  14. Engineering Synthetic cis-Regulatory Elements for Simultaneous Recognition of Three Transcriptional Factors in Bacteria.

    PubMed

    Amores, Gerardo Ruiz; Guazzaroni, María-Eugenia; Silva-Rocha, Rafael

    2015-12-18

    Recognition of cis-regulatory elements by transcription factors (TF) at target promoters is crucial to gene regulation in bacteria. In this process, binding of TFs to their cognate sequences depends on a set of physical interactions between these proteins and specific nucleotides in the operator region. Previously, we showed that in silico optimization algorithms are able to generate short sequences that are recognized by two different TFs of Escherichia coli, namely, CRP and IHF, thus generating an AND logic gate. Here, we expanded this approach in order to engineer DNA sequences that can be simultaneously recognized by three unrelated TFs (CRP, IHF, and Fis). Using in silico optimization and experimental validation strategies, we were able to obtain a candidate promoter (Plac-CFI1) regulated by only two TFs with an AND logic, thus demonstrating a limitation in the design. Subsequently, we modified the algorithm to allow the optimization of extended sequences, and were able to design two synthetic promoters (PCFI20-1 and PCFI22-5) that were functional in vivo. Expression assays in E. coli mutant strains for each TF revealed that while CRP positively regulates the promoter activities, IHF and Fis are strong repressors of both the promoter variants. Taken together, our results demonstrate the potential of in silico strategies in bacterial synthetic promoter engineering. Furthermore, the study also shows how small modifications in cis-regulatory elements can drastically affect the final logic of the resulting promoter. PMID:26305598

  15. Transcription of Mammalian cis-Regulatory Elements Is Restrained by Actively Enforced Early Termination.

    PubMed

    Austenaa, Liv M I; Barozzi, Iros; Simonatto, Marta; Masella, Silvia; Della Chiara, Giulia; Ghisletti, Serena; Curina, Alessia; de Wit, Elzo; Bouwman, Britta A M; de Pretis, Stefano; Piccolo, Viviana; Termanini, Alberto; Prosperini, Elena; Pelizzola, Mattia; de Laat, Wouter; Natoli, Gioacchino

    2015-11-01

    Upon recruitment to active enhancers and promoters, RNA polymerase II (Pol II) generates short non-coding transcripts of unclear function. The mechanisms that control the length and the amount of ncRNAs generated by cis-regulatory elements are largely unknown. Here, we show that the adaptor protein WDR82 and its associated complexes actively limit such non-coding transcription. WDR82 targets the SET1 H3K4 methyltransferases and the nuclear protein phosphatase 1 (PP1) complexes to the initiating Pol II. WDR82 and PP1 also interact with components of the transcriptional termination and RNA processing machineries. Depletion of WDR82, SET1, or the PP1 subunit required for its nuclear import caused distinct but overlapping transcription termination defects at highly expressed genes and active enhancers and promoters, thus enabling the increased synthesis of unusually long ncRNAs. These data indicate that transcription initiated from cis-regulatory elements is tightly coordinated with termination mechanisms that impose the synthesis of short RNAs. PMID:26593720

  16. Functionally conserved cis-regulatory elements of COL18A1 identified through zebrafish transgenesis.

    PubMed

    Kague, Erika; Bessling, Seneca L; Lee, Josephine; Hu, Gui; Passos-Bueno, Maria Rita; Fisher, Shannon

    2010-01-15

    Type XVIII collagen is a component of basement membranes, and expressed prominently in the eye, blood vessels, liver, and the central nervous system. Homozygous mutations in COL18A1 lead to Knobloch Syndrome, characterized by ocular defects and occipital encephalocele. However, relatively little has been described on the role of type XVIII collagen in development, and nothing is known about the regulation of its tissue-specific expression pattern. We have used zebrafish transgenesis to identify and characterize cis-regulatory sequences controlling expression of the human gene. Candidate enhancers were selected from non-coding sequence associated with COL18A1 based on sequence conservation among mammals. Although these displayed no overt conservation with orthologous zebrafish sequences, four regions nonetheless acted as tissue-specific transcriptional enhancers in the zebrafish embryo, and together recapitulated the major aspects of col18a1 expression. Additional post-hoc computational analysis on positive enhancer sequences revealed alignments between mammalian and teleost sequences, which we hypothesize predict the corresponding zebrafish enhancers; for one of these, we demonstrate functional overlap with the orthologous human enhancer sequence. Our results provide important insight into the biological function and regulation of COL18A1, and point to additional sequences that may contribute to complex diseases involving COL18A1. More generally, we show that combining functional data with targeted analyses for phylogenetic conservation can reveal conserved cis-regulatory elements in the large number of cases where computational alignment alone falls short. PMID:19895802

  17. Profiling of conserved non-coding elements upstream of SHOX and functional characterisation of the SHOX cis-regulatory landscape

    PubMed Central

    Verdin, Hannah; Fernández-Miñán, Ana; Benito-Sanz, Sara; Janssens, Sandra; Callewaert, Bert; Waele, Kathleen De; Schepper, Jean De; François, Inge; Menten, Björn; Heath, Karen E.; Gómez-Skarmeta, José Luis; Baere, Elfride De

    2015-01-01

    Genetic defects such as copy number variations (CNVs) in non-coding regions containing conserved non-coding elements (CNEs) outside the transcription unit of their target gene, can underlie genetic disease. An example of this is the short stature homeobox (SHOX) gene, regulated by seven CNEs located downstream and upstream of SHOX, with proven enhancer capacity in chicken limbs. CNVs of the downstream CNEs have been reported in many idiopathic short stature (ISS) cases, however, only recently have a few CNVs of the upstream enhancers been identified. Here, we set out to provide insight into: (i) the cis-regulatory role of these upstream CNEs in human cells, (ii) the prevalence of upstream CNVs in ISS, and (iii) the chromatin architecture of the SHOX cis-regulatory landscape in chicken and human cells. Firstly, luciferase assays in human U2OS cells, and 4C-seq both in chicken limb buds and human U2OS cells, demonstrated cis-regulatory enhancer capacities of the upstream CNEs. Secondly, CNVs of these upstream CNEs were found in three of 501 ISS patients. Finally, our 4C-seq interaction map of the SHOX region reveals a cis-regulatory domain spanning more than 1 Mb and harbouring putative new cis-regulatory elements. PMID:26631348

  18. BET bromodomain inhibition releases the Mediator complex from select cis-regulatory elements

    PubMed Central

    Bhagwat, Anand S.; Roe, Jae-Seok; Mok, Beverly A.; Hohmann, Anja F.; Shi, Junwei; Vakoc, Christopher R.

    2016-01-01

    The bromodomain and extraterminal (BET) protein BRD4 can physically interact with the Mediator complex, but the relevance of this association to the therapeutic effects of BET inhibitors in cancer is unclear. Here, we show that BET inhibition causes a rapid release of Mediator from a subset of cis-regulatory elements in the genome of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) cells. These sites of Mediator eviction were highly correlated with transcriptional suppression of neighboring genes, which are enriched for targets of the transcription factor MYB and for functions related to leukemogenesis. An shRNA screen of Mediator in AML cells identified the MED12, MED13, MED23, and MED24 subunits as performing a similar regulatory function to BRD4 in this context, including a shared role in sustaining a block in myeloid maturation. These findings suggest that the interaction between BRD4 and Mediator has functional importance for gene-specific transcriptional activation and for AML maintenance. PMID:27068464

  19. Lessons from Domestication: Targeting Cis-Regulatory Elements for Crop Improvement.

    PubMed

    Swinnen, Gwen; Goossens, Alain; Pauwels, Laurens

    2016-06-01

    Domestication of wild plant species has provided us with crops that serve our human nutritional needs. Advanced DNA sequencing has propelled the unveiling of underlying genetic changes associated with domestication. Interestingly, many changes reside in cis-regulatory elements (CREs) that control the expression of an unmodified coding sequence. Sequence variation in CREs can impact gene expression levels, but also developmental timing and tissue specificity of expression. When genes are involved in multiple pathways or active in several organs and developmental stages CRE modifications are favored in contrast to mutations in coding regions, due to the lack of detrimental pleiotropic effects. Therefore, learning from domestication, we propose that CREs are interesting targets for genome editing to create new alleles for plant breeding. PMID:26876195

  20. Identification of a novel cis-regulatory element essential for immune tolerance.

    PubMed

    LaFlam, Taylor N; Seumois, Grégory; Miller, Corey N; Lwin, Wint; Fasano, Kayla J; Waterfield, Michael; Proekt, Irina; Vijayanand, Pandurangan; Anderson, Mark S

    2015-11-16

    Thymic central tolerance is essential to preventing autoimmunity. In medullary thymic epithelial cells (mTECs), the Autoimmune regulator (Aire) gene plays an essential role in this process by driving the expression of a diverse set of tissue-specific antigens (TSAs), which are presented and help tolerize self-reactive thymocytes. Interestingly, Aire has a highly tissue-restricted pattern of expression, with only mTECs and peripheral extrathymic Aire-expressing cells (eTACs) known to express detectable levels in adults. Despite this high level of tissue specificity, the cis-regulatory elements that control Aire expression have remained obscure. Here, we identify a highly conserved noncoding DNA element that is essential for Aire expression. This element shows enrichment of enhancer-associated histone marks in mTECs and also has characteristics of being an NF-κB-responsive element. Finally, we find that this element is essential for Aire expression in vivo and necessary to prevent spontaneous autoimmunity, reflecting the importance of this regulatory DNA element in promoting immune tolerance. PMID:26527800

  1. Close sequence comparisons are sufficient to identify human cis-regulatory elements.

    PubMed

    Prabhakar, Shyam; Poulin, Francis; Shoukry, Malak; Afzal, Veena; Rubin, Edward M; Couronne, Olivier; Pennacchio, Len A

    2006-07-01

    Cross-species DNA sequence comparison is the primary method used to identify functional noncoding elements in human and other large genomes. However, little is known about the relative merits of evolutionarily close and distant sequence comparisons. To address this problem, we identified evolutionarily conserved noncoding regions in primate, mammalian, and more distant comparisons using a uniform approach (Gumby) that facilitates unbiased assessment of the impact of evolutionary distance on predictive power. We benchmarked computational predictions against previously identified cis-regulatory elements at diverse genomic loci and also tested numerous extremely conserved human-rodent sequences for transcriptional enhancer activity using an in vivo enhancer assay in transgenic mice. Human regulatory elements were identified with acceptable sensitivity (53%-80%) and true-positive rate (27%-67%) by comparison with one to five other eutherian mammals or six other simian primates. More distant comparisons (marsupial, avian, amphibian, and fish) failed to identify many of the empirically defined functional noncoding elements. Our results highlight the practical utility of close sequence comparisons, and the loss of sensitivity entailed by more distant comparisons. We derived an intuitive relationship between ancient and recent noncoding sequence conservation from whole-genome comparative analysis that explains most of the observations from empirical benchmarking. Lastly, we determined that, in addition to strength of conservation, genomic location and/or density of surrounding conserved elements must also be considered in selecting candidate enhancers for in vivo testing at embryonic time points. PMID:16769978

  2. Quantitative comparison of cis-regulatory element (CRE) activities in transgenic Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Rogers, William A; Williams, Thomas M

    2011-01-01

    Gene expression patterns are specified by cis-regulatory element (CRE) sequences, which are also called enhancers or cis-regulatory modules. A typical CRE possesses an arrangement of binding sites for several transcription factor proteins that confer a regulatory logic specifying when, where, and at what level the regulated gene(s) is expressed. The full set of CREs within an animal genome encodes the organism's program for development, and empirical as well as theoretical studies indicate that mutations in CREs played a prominent role in morphological evolution. Moreover, human genome wide association studies indicate that genetic variation in CREs contribute substantially to phenotypic variation. Thus, understanding regulatory logic and how mutations affect such logic is a central goal of genetics. Reporter transgenes provide a powerful method to study the in vivo function of CREs. Here a known or suspected CRE sequence is coupled to heterologous promoter and coding sequences for a reporter gene encoding an easily observable protein product. When a reporter transgene is inserted into a host organism, the CRE's activity becomes visible in the form of the encoded reporter protein. P-element mediated transgenesis in the fruit fly species Drosophila (D.) melanogaster has been used for decades to introduce reporter transgenes into this model organism, though the genomic placement of transgenes is random. Hence, reporter gene activity is strongly influenced by the local chromatin and gene environment, limiting CRE comparisons to being qualitative. In recent years, the phiC31 based integration system was adapted for use in D. melanogaster to insert transgenes into specific genome landing sites. This capability has made the quantitative measurement of gene and, relevant here, CRE activity feasible. The production of transgenic fruit flies can be outsourced, including phiC31-based integration, eliminating the need to purchase expensive equipment and/or have proficiency at

  3. Shuffling of cis-regulatory elements is a pervasive feature of the vertebrate lineage

    PubMed Central

    Sanges, Remo; Kalmar, Eva; Claudiani, Pamela; D'Amato, Maria; Muller, Ferenc; Stupka, Elia

    2006-01-01

    Background All vertebrates share a remarkable degree of similarity in their development as well as in the basic functions of their cells. Despite this, attempts at unearthing genome-wide regulatory elements conserved throughout the vertebrate lineage using BLAST-like approaches have thus far detected noncoding conservation in only a few hundred genes, mostly associated with regulation of transcription and development. Results We used a unique combination of tools to obtain regional global-local alignments of orthologous loci. This approach takes into account shuffling of regulatory regions that are likely to occur over evolutionary distances greater than those separating mammalian genomes. This approach revealed one order of magnitude more vertebrate conserved elements than was previously reported in over 2,000 genes, including a high number of genes found in the membrane and extracellular regions. Our analysis revealed that 72% of the elements identified have undergone shuffling. We tested the ability of the elements identified to enhance transcription in zebrafish embryos and compared their activity with a set of control fragments. We found that more than 80% of the elements tested were able to enhance transcription significantly, prevalently in a tissue-restricted manner corresponding to the expression domain of the neighboring gene. Conclusion Our work elucidates the importance of shuffling in the detection of cis-regulatory elements. It also elucidates how similarities across the vertebrate lineage, which go well beyond development, can be explained not only within the realm of coding genes but also in that of the sequences that ultimately govern their expression. PMID:16859531

  4. Characterization of Putative cis-Regulatory Elements in Genes Preferentially Expressed in Arabidopsis Male Meiocytes

    PubMed Central

    Li, Mingjun

    2014-01-01

    Meiosis is essential for plant reproduction because it is the process during which homologous chromosome pairing, synapsis, and meiotic recombination occur. The meiotic transcriptome is difficult to investigate because of the size of meiocytes and the confines of anther lobes. The recent development of isolation techniques has enabled the characterization of transcriptional profiles in male meiocytes of Arabidopsis. Gene expression in male meiocytes shows unique features. The direct interaction of transcription factors (TFs) with DNA regulatory sequences forms the basis for the specificity of transcriptional regulation. Here, we identified putative cis-regulatory elements (CREs) associated with male meiocyte-expressed genes using in silico tools. The upstream regions (1 kb) of the top 50 genes preferentially expressed in Arabidopsis meiocytes possessed conserved motifs. These motifs are putative binding sites of TFs, some of which share common functions, such as roles in cell division. In combination with cell-type-specific analysis, our findings could be a substantial aid for the identification and experimental verification of the protein-DNA interactions for the specific TFs that drive gene expression in meiocytes. PMID:25250331

  5. Genetic Analysis of Transvection Effects Involving Cis-Regulatory Elements of the Drosophila Ultrabithorax Gene

    PubMed Central

    Micol, J. L.; Castelli-Gair, J. E.; Garcia-Bellido, A.

    1990-01-01

    The Ultrabithorax (Ubx) gene of Drosophila melanogaster contains two functionally distinguishable regions: the protein-coding Ubx transcription unit and, upstream of it, the transcribed but non-protein-coding bxd region. Numerous recessive, partial loss-of-function mutations which appear to be regulatory mutations map within the bxd region and within the introns of the Ubx transcription unit. In addition, mutations within the Ubx unit exons are known and most of these behave as null alleles. Ubx(1) is one such allele. We have confirmed that, although the Ubx(1) allele does not produce detectable Ubx proteins (UBX), it does retain other genetic functions detectable by their effects on the expression of a paired, homologous Ubx allele, i.e., by transvection. We have extended previous analyses made by E. B. Lewis by mapping the critical elements of the Ubx gene which participate in transvection effects. Our results show that the Ubx(1) allele retains wild-type functions whose effectiveness can be reduced (1) by additional cis mutations in the bxd region or in introns of the Ubx transcription unit, as well as (2) by rearrangements disturbing pairing between homologous Ubx genes. Our results suggest that those remnant functions in Ubx(1) are able to modulate the activity of the allele located in the homologous chromosome. We discuss the normal cis regulatory role of these functions involved in trans interactions between homologous Ubx genes, as well as the implications of our results for the current models on transvection. PMID:2123161

  6. Recurrent Modification of a Conserved Cis-Regulatory Element Underlies Fruit Fly Pigmentation Diversity

    PubMed Central

    Rogers, William A.; Salomone, Joseph R.; Tacy, David J.; Camino, Eric M.; Davis, Kristen A.; Rebeiz, Mark; Williams, Thomas M.

    2013-01-01

    The development of morphological traits occurs through the collective action of networks of genes connected at the level of gene expression. As any node in a network may be a target of evolutionary change, the recurrent targeting of the same node would indicate that the path of evolution is biased for the relevant trait and network. Although examples of parallel evolution have implicated recurrent modification of the same gene and cis-regulatory element (CRE), little is known about the mutational and molecular paths of parallel CRE evolution. In Drosophila melanogaster fruit flies, the Bric-à-brac (Bab) transcription factors control the development of a suite of sexually dimorphic traits on the posterior abdomen. Female-specific Bab expression is regulated by the dimorphic element, a CRE that possesses direct inputs from body plan (ABD-B) and sex-determination (DSX) transcription factors. Here, we find that the recurrent evolutionary modification of this CRE underlies both intraspecific and interspecific variation in female pigmentation in the melanogaster species group. By reconstructing the sequence and regulatory activity of the ancestral Drosophila melanogaster dimorphic element, we demonstrate that a handful of mutations were sufficient to create independent CRE alleles with differing activities. Moreover, intraspecific and interspecific dimorphic element evolution proceeded with little to no alterations to the known body plan and sex-determination regulatory linkages. Collectively, our findings represent an example where the paths of evolution appear biased to a specific CRE, and drastic changes in function were accompanied by deep conservation of key regulatory linkages. PMID:24009528

  7. Putative cis-Regulatory Elements Associated with Heat Shock Genes Activated During Excystation of Cryptosporidium parvum

    PubMed Central

    Lara, Ana M.; Serrano, Myrna; Sheth, Nihar; Buck, Gregory

    2010-01-01

    Background Cryptosporidiosis is a ubiquitous infectious disease, caused by the protozoan parasites Cryptosporidium hominis and C. parvum, leading to acute, persistent and chronic diarrhea worldwide. Although the complications of this disease can be serious, even fatal, in immunocompromised patients of any age, they have also been found to lead to long term effects, including growth inhibition and impaired cognitive development, in infected immunocompetent children. The Cryptosporidium life cycle alternates between a dormant stage, the oocyst, and a highly replicative phase that includes both asexual vegetative stages as well as sexual stages, implying fine genetic regulatory mechanisms. The parasite is extremely difficult to study because it cannot be cultured in vitro and animal models are equally challenging. The recent publication of the genome sequence of C. hominis and C. parvum has, however, significantly advanced our understanding of the biology and pathogenesis of this parasite. Methodology/Principal Findings Herein, our goal was to identify cis-regulatory elements associated with heat shock response in Cryptosporidium using a combination of in silico and real time RT-PCR strategies. Analysis with Gibbs-Sampling algorithms of upstream non-translated regions of twelve genes annotated as heat shock proteins in the Cryptosporidium genome identified a highly conserved over-represented sequence motif in eleven of them. RT-PCR analyses, described herein and also by others, show that these eleven genes bearing the putative element are induced concurrent with excystation of parasite oocysts via heat shock. Conclusions/Significance Our analyses suggest that occurrences of a motif identified in the upstream regions of the Cryptosporidium heat shock genes represent parts of the transcriptional apparatus and function as stress response elements that activate expression of these genes during excystation, and possibly at other stages in the life cycle of the parasite

  8. Regulation of human PTCH1b expression by different 5' untranslated region cis-regulatory elements

    PubMed Central

    Ozretić, Petar; Bisio, Alessandra; Musani, Vesna; Trnski, Diana; Sabol, Maja; Levanat, Sonja; Inga, Alberto

    2015-01-01

    PTCH1 gene codes for a 12-pass transmembrane receptor with a negative regulatory role in the Hedgehog-Gli signaling pathway. PTCH1 germline mutations cause Gorlin syndrome, a disorder characterized by developmental abnormalities and tumor susceptibility. The autosomal dominant inheritance, and the evidence for PTCH1 haploinsufficiency, suggests that fine-tuning systems of protein patched homolog 1 (PTC1) levels exist to properly regulate the pathway. Given the role of 5' untranslated region (5'UTR) in protein expression, our aim was to thoroughly explore cis-regulatory elements in the 5'UTR of PTCH1 transcript 1b. The (CGG)n polymorphism was the main potential regulatory element studied so far but with inconsistent results and no clear association between repeat number and disease risk. Using luciferase reporter constructs in human cell lines here we show that the number of CGG repeats has no strong impact on gene expression, both at mRNA and protein levels. We observed variability in the length of 5'UTR and changes in abundance of the associated transcripts after pathway activation. We show that upstream AUG codons (uAUGs) present only in longer 5'UTRs could negatively regulate the amount of PTC1 isoform L (PTC1-L). The existence of an internal ribosome entry site (IRES) observed using different approaches and mapped in the region comprising the CGG repeats, would counteract the effect of the uAUGs and enable synthesis of PTC1-L under stressful conditions, such as during hypoxia. Higher relative translation efficiency of PTCH1b mRNA in HEK 293T cultured hypoxia was observed by polysomal profiling and Western blot analyses. All our results point to an exceptionally complex and so far unexplored role of 5'UTR PTCH1b cis-element features in the regulation of the Hedgehog-Gli signaling pathway. PMID:25826662

  9. Deciphering Cis-Regulatory Element Mediated Combinatorial Regulation in Rice under Blast Infected Condition.

    PubMed

    Deb, Arindam; Kundu, Sudip

    2015-01-01

    Combinations of cis-regulatory elements (CREs) present at the promoters facilitate the binding of several transcription factors (TFs), thereby altering the consequent gene expressions. Due to the eminent complexity of the regulatory mechanism, the combinatorics of CRE-mediated transcriptional regulation has been elusive. In this work, we have developed a new methodology that quantifies the co-occurrence tendencies of CREs present in a set of promoter sequences; these co-occurrence scores are filtered in three consecutive steps to test their statistical significance; and the significantly co-occurring CRE pairs are presented as networks. These networks of co-occurring CREs are further transformed to derive higher order of regulatory combinatorics. We have further applied this methodology on the differentially up-regulated gene-sets of rice tissues under fungal (Magnaporthe) infected conditions to demonstrate how it helps to understand the CRE-mediated combinatorial gene regulation. Our analysis includes a wide spectrum of biologically important results. The CRE pairs having a strong tendency to co-occur often exhibit very similar joint distribution patterns at the promoters of rice. We couple the network approach with experimental results of plant gene regulation and defense mechanisms and find evidences of auto and cross regulation among TF families, cross-talk among multiple hormone signaling pathways, similarities and dissimilarities in regulatory combinatorics between different tissues, etc. Our analyses have pointed a highly distributed nature of the combinatorial gene regulation facilitating an efficient alteration in response to fungal attack. All together, our proposed methodology could be an important approach in understanding the combinatorial gene regulation. It can be further applied to unravel the tissue and/or condition specific combinatorial gene regulation in other eukaryotic systems with the availability of annotated genomic sequences and suitable

  10. Deciphering Cis-Regulatory Element Mediated Combinatorial Regulation in Rice under Blast Infected Condition

    PubMed Central

    Deb, Arindam; Kundu, Sudip

    2015-01-01

    Combinations of cis-regulatory elements (CREs) present at the promoters facilitate the binding of several transcription factors (TFs), thereby altering the consequent gene expressions. Due to the eminent complexity of the regulatory mechanism, the combinatorics of CRE-mediated transcriptional regulation has been elusive. In this work, we have developed a new methodology that quantifies the co-occurrence tendencies of CREs present in a set of promoter sequences; these co-occurrence scores are filtered in three consecutive steps to test their statistical significance; and the significantly co-occurring CRE pairs are presented as networks. These networks of co-occurring CREs are further transformed to derive higher order of regulatory combinatorics. We have further applied this methodology on the differentially up-regulated gene-sets of rice tissues under fungal (Magnaporthe) infected conditions to demonstrate how it helps to understand the CRE-mediated combinatorial gene regulation. Our analysis includes a wide spectrum of biologically important results. The CRE pairs having a strong tendency to co-occur often exhibit very similar joint distribution patterns at the promoters of rice. We couple the network approach with experimental results of plant gene regulation and defense mechanisms and find evidences of auto and cross regulation among TF families, cross-talk among multiple hormone signaling pathways, similarities and dissimilarities in regulatory combinatorics between different tissues, etc. Our analyses have pointed a highly distributed nature of the combinatorial gene regulation facilitating an efficient alteration in response to fungal attack. All together, our proposed methodology could be an important approach in understanding the combinatorial gene regulation. It can be further applied to unravel the tissue and/or condition specific combinatorial gene regulation in other eukaryotic systems with the availability of annotated genomic sequences and suitable

  11. Changes in cis-regulatory elements of a key floral regulator are associated with divergence of inflorescence architectures.

    PubMed

    Kusters, Elske; Della Pina, Serena; Castel, Rob; Souer, Erik; Koes, Ronald

    2015-08-15

    Higher plant species diverged extensively with regard to the moment (flowering time) and position (inflorescence architecture) at which flowers are formed. This seems largely caused by variation in the expression patterns of conserved genes that specify floral meristem identity (FMI), rather than changes in the encoded proteins. Here, we report a functional comparison of the promoters of homologous FMI genes from Arabidopsis, petunia, tomato and Antirrhinum. Analysis of promoter-reporter constructs in petunia and Arabidopsis, as well as complementation experiments, showed that the divergent expression of leafy (LFY) and the petunia homolog aberrant leaf and flower (ALF) results from alterations in the upstream regulatory network rather than cis-regulatory changes. The divergent expression of unusual floral organs (UFO) from Arabidopsis, and the petunia homolog double top (DOT), however, is caused by the loss or gain of cis-regulatory promoter elements, which respond to trans-acting factors that are expressed in similar patterns in both species. Introduction of pUFO:UFO causes no obvious defects in Arabidopsis, but in petunia it causes the precocious and ectopic formation of flowers. This provides an example of how a change in a cis-regulatory region can account for a change in the plant body plan. PMID:26220938

  12. Identification and Functional Characterization of Cis-Regulatory Elements Controlling Expression of the Porcine ADRB2 Gene

    PubMed Central

    Jaeger, Alexandra; Fritschka, Stephan; Ponsuksili, Siriluck; Wimmers, Klaus; Muráni, Eduard

    2015-01-01

    The beta-2 adrenergic receptor (beta-2 AR) modulates metabolic processes in skeletal muscle, liver, and adipose tissue in response to catecholamine stimulation. We showed previously that expression of the porcine beta-2 AR gene (ADRB2) is affected by cis-regulatory polymorphisms. These are most likely responsible for the association of ADRB2 with economically relevant muscle-related traits in pigs. The present study focused on characterization of promoter elements involved in basal transcriptional regulation of the porcine ADRB2 in different cell types to aid identification of its cis-regulatory polymorphisms. Based on in silico analysis, luciferase reporter gene assays and gel shift assays were performed using COS-7, HepG2, C2C12, and 3T3-L1 cells. Deletion mapping of the 5´ flanking region (-1324 to +33) of ADRB2 revealed the region between -307 and -269 to be the minimal promoter, including regulatory elements essential for the basal transcriptional activity in all four tested cell types. Directly upstream (-400 to -323) we identified an important enhancer element required for maximal promoter activity. In silico analysis and gel shift assays revealed that this GC-rich element harbors two evolutionarily conserved binding sites of Sp1, a constitutive transcriptional activator. Significant transcriptional activation of the porcine ADRB2 promoter was demonstrated by overexpression of Sp1. Our results demonstrate, for the first time, an important role of Sp1 and of the responsive enhancer element in the regulation of ADRB2 expression. Polymorphisms located in this domain of the porcine ADRB2 promoter represent candidate causal cis-regulatory variants. PMID:26221068

  13. Characterization of a putative cis-regulatory element that controls transcriptional activity of the pig uroplakin II gene promoter

    SciTech Connect

    Kwon, Deug-Nam; Park, Mi-Ryung; Park, Jong-Yi; Cho, Ssang-Goo; Park, Chankyu; Oh, Jae-Wook; Song, Hyuk; Kim, Jae-Hwan; Kim, Jin-Hoi

    2011-07-01

    Highlights: {yields} The sequences of -604 to -84 bp of the pUPII promoter contained the region of a putative negative cis-regulatory element. {yields} The core promoter was located in the 5F-1. {yields} Transcription factor HNF4 can directly bind in the pUPII core promoter region, which plays a critical role in controlling promoter activity. {yields} These features of the pUPII promoter are fundamental to development of a target-specific vector. -- Abstract: Uroplakin II (UPII) is a one of the integral membrane proteins synthesized as a major differentiation product of mammalian urothelium. UPII gene expression is bladder specific and differentiation dependent, but little is known about its transcription response elements and molecular mechanism. To identify the cis-regulatory elements in the pig UPII (pUPII) gene promoter region, we constructed pUPII 5' upstream region deletion mutants and demonstrated that each of the deletion mutants participates in controlling the expression of the pUPII gene in human bladder carcinoma RT4 cells. We also identified a new core promoter region and putative negative cis-regulatory element within a minimal promoter region. In addition, we showed that hepatocyte nuclear factor 4 (HNF4) can directly bind in the pUPII core promoter (5F-1) region, which plays a critical role in controlling promoter activity. Transient cotransfection experiments showed that HNF4 positively regulates pUPII gene promoter activity. Thus, the binding element and its binding protein, HNF4 transcription factor, may be involved in the mechanism that specifically regulates pUPII gene transcription.

  14. Differential contribution of cis-regulatory elements to higher order chromatin structure and expression of the CFTR locus.

    PubMed

    Yang, Rui; Kerschner, Jenny L; Gosalia, Nehal; Neems, Daniel; Gorsic, Lidija K; Safi, Alexias; Crawford, Gregory E; Kosak, Steven T; Leir, Shih-Hsing; Harris, Ann

    2016-04-20

    Higher order chromatin structure establishes domains that organize the genome and coordinate gene expression. However, the molecular mechanisms controlling transcription of individual loci within a topological domain (TAD) are not fully understood. The cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) gene provides a paradigm for investigating these mechanisms.CFTR occupies a TAD bordered by CTCF/cohesin binding sites within which are cell-type-selective cis-regulatory elements for the locus. We showed previously that intronic and extragenic enhancers, when occupied by specific transcription factors, are recruited to the CFTR promoter by a looping mechanism to drive gene expression. Here we use a combination of CRISPR/Cas9 editing of cis-regulatory elements and siRNA-mediated depletion of architectural proteins to determine the relative contribution of structural elements and enhancers to the higher order structure and expression of the CFTR locus. We found the boundaries of the CFTRTAD are conserved among diverse cell types and are dependent on CTCF and cohesin complex. Removal of an upstream CTCF-binding insulator alters the interaction profile, but has little effect on CFTR expression. Within the TAD, intronic enhancers recruit cell-type selective transcription factors and deletion of a pivotal enhancer element dramatically decreases CFTR expression, but has minor effect on its 3D structure. PMID:26673704

  15. Mutagenesis of GATA motifs controlling the endoderm regulator elt-2 reveals distinct dominant and secondary cis-regulatory elements.

    PubMed

    Du, Lawrence; Tracy, Sharon; Rifkin, Scott A

    2016-04-01

    Cis-regulatory elements (CREs) are crucial links in developmental gene regulatory networks, but in many cases, it can be difficult to discern whether similar CREs are functionally equivalent. We found that despite similar conservation and binding capability to upstream activators, different GATA cis-regulatory motifs within the promoter of the C. elegans endoderm regulator elt-2 play distinctive roles in activating and modulating gene expression throughout development. We fused wild-type and mutant versions of the elt-2 promoter to a gfp reporter and inserted these constructs as single copies into the C. elegans genome. We then counted early embryonic gfp transcripts using single-molecule RNA FISH (smFISH) and quantified gut GFP fluorescence. We determined that a single primary dominant GATA motif located 527bp upstream of the elt-2 start codon was necessary for both embryonic activation and later maintenance of transcription, while nearby secondary GATA motifs played largely subtle roles in modulating postembryonic levels of elt-2. Mutation of the primary activating site increased low-level spatiotemporally ectopic stochastic transcription, indicating that this site acts repressively in non-endoderm cells. Our results reveal that CREs with similar GATA factor binding affinities in close proximity can play very divergent context-dependent roles in regulating the expression of a developmentally critical gene in vivo. PMID:26896592

  16. Distal cis-regulatory elements are required for tissue-specific expression of enamelin (Enam)

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Yuanyuan; Papagerakis, Petros; Ye, Ling; Feng, Jerry Q.; Simmer, James P.; Hu, Jan C-C.

    2009-01-01

    Enamel formation is orchestrated by the sequential expression of genes encoding enamel matrix proteins; however, the mechanisms sustaining the spatio–temporal order of gene transcription during amelogenesis are poorly understood. The aim of this study was to characterize the cis-regulatory sequences necessary for normal expression of enamelin (Enam). Several enamelin transcription regulatory regions, showing high sequence homology among species, were identified. DNA constructs containing 5.2 or 3.9 kb regions upstream of the enamelin translation initiation site were linked to a LacZ reporter and used to generate transgenic mice. Only the 5.2-Enam–LacZ construct was sufficient to recapitulate the endogenous pattern of enamelin tooth-specific expression. The 3.9-Enam–LacZ transgenic lines showed no expression in dental cells, but ectopic β-galactosidase activity was detected in osteoblasts. Potential transcription factor-binding sites were identified that may be important in controlling enamelin basal promoter activity and in conferring enamelin tissue-specific expression. Our study provides new insights into regulatory mechanisms governing enamelin expression. PMID:18353004

  17. Distinct Functional Constraints Partition Sequence Conservation in a cis-Regulatory Element

    PubMed Central

    Ruvinsky, Ilya

    2011-01-01

    Different functional constraints contribute to different evolutionary rates across genomes. To understand why some sequences evolve faster than others in a single cis-regulatory locus, we investigated function and evolutionary dynamics of the promoter of the Caenorhabditis elegans unc-47 gene. We found that this promoter consists of two distinct domains. The proximal promoter is conserved and is largely sufficient to direct appropriate spatial expression. The distal promoter displays little if any conservation between several closely related nematodes. Despite this divergence, sequences from all species confer robustness of expression, arguing that this function does not require substantial sequence conservation. We showed that even unrelated sequences have the ability to promote robust expression. A prominent feature shared by all of these robustness-promoting sequences is an AT-enriched nucleotide composition consistent with nucleosome depletion. Because general sequence composition can be maintained despite sequence turnover, our results explain how different functional constraints can lead to vastly disparate rates of sequence divergence within a promoter. PMID:21655084

  18. Exaptation of Transposable Elements into Novel Cis-Regulatory Elements: Is the Evidence Always Strong?

    PubMed Central

    de Souza, Flávio S.J.; Franchini, Lucía F.; Rubinstein, Marcelo

    2013-01-01

    Transposable elements (TEs) are mobile genetic sequences that can jump around the genome from one location to another, behaving as genomic parasites. TEs have been particularly effective in colonizing mammalian genomes, and such heavy TE load is expected to have conditioned genome evolution. Indeed, studies conducted both at the gene and genome levels have uncovered TE insertions that seem to have been co-opted—or exapted—by providing transcription factor binding sites (TFBSs) that serve as promoters and enhancers, leading to the hypothesis that TE exaptation is a major factor in the evolution of gene regulation. Here, we critically review the evidence for exaptation of TE-derived sequences as TFBSs, promoters, enhancers, and silencers/insulators both at the gene and genome levels. We classify the functional impact attributed to TE insertions into four categories of increasing complexity and argue that so far very few studies have conclusively demonstrated exaptation of TEs as transcriptional regulatory regions. We also contend that many genome-wide studies dealing with TE exaptation in recent lineages of mammals are still inconclusive and that the hypothesis of rapid transcriptional regulatory rewiring mediated by TE mobilization must be taken with caution. Finally, we suggest experimental approaches that may help attributing higher-order functions to candidate exapted TEs. PMID:23486611

  19. Multiple cis Regulatory Elements Control RANTES Promoter Activity in Alveolar Epithelial Cells Infected with Respiratory Syncytial Virus

    PubMed Central

    Casola, Antonella; Garofalo, Roberto P.; Haeberle, Helene; Elliott, Todd F.; Lin, Rongtuan; Jamaluddin, Mohammad; Brasier, Allan R.

    2001-01-01

    Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) produces intense pulmonary inflammation, in part through its ability to induce chemokine synthesis in infected airway epithelial cells. RANTES (regulated upon activation, normally T-cell expressed and presumably secreted) is a CC chemokine which recruits and activates monocytes, lymphocytes, and eosinophils, all cell types present in the lung inflammatory infiltrate induced by RSV infection. In this study, we analyzed the mechanism of RSV-induced RANTES promoter activation in human type II alveolar epithelial cells (A549 cells). Promoter deletion and mutagenesis experiments indicate that RSV requires the presence of five different cis regulatory elements, located in the promoter fragment spanning from −220 to +55 nucleotides, corresponding to NF-κB, C/EBP, Jun/CREB/ATF, and interferon regulatory factor (IRF) binding sites. Although site mutations of the NF-κB, C/EBP, and CREB/AP-1 like sites reduce RSV-induced RANTES gene transcription to 50% or less, only mutations affecting IRF binding completely abolish RANTES inducibility. Supershift and microaffinity isolation assays were used to identify the different transcription factor family members whose DNA binding activity was RSV inducible. Expression of dominant negative mutants of these transcription factors further established their central role in virus-induced RANTES promoter activation. Our finding that the presence of multiple cis regulatory elements is required for full activation of the RANTES promoter in RSV-infected alveolar epithelial cells supports the enhanceosome model for RANTES gene transcription, which is absolutely dependent on binding of IRF transcription factors. The identification of regulatory mechanisms of RANTES gene expression is fundamental for rational design of inhibitors of RSV-induced lung inflammation. PMID:11413310

  20. Characterization and identification of cis-regulatory elements in Arabidopsis based on single-nucleotide polymorphism information.

    PubMed

    Korkuc, Paula; Schippers, Jos H M; Walther, Dirk

    2014-01-01

    Identifying regulatory elements and revealing their role in gene expression regulation remains a central goal of plant genome research. We exploited the detailed genomic sequencing information of a large number of Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) accessions to characterize known and to identify novel cis-regulatory elements in gene promoter regions of Arabidopsis by relying on conservation as the hallmark signal of functional relevance. Based on the genomic layout and the obtained density profiles of single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in sequence regions upstream of transcription start sites, the average length of promoter regions in Arabidopsis could be established at 500 bp. Genes associated with high degrees of variability of their respective upstream regions are preferentially involved in environmental response and signaling processes, while low levels of promoter SNP density are common among housekeeping genes. Known cis-elements were found to exhibit a decreased SNP density than sequence regions not associated with known motifs. For 15 known cis-element motifs, strong positional preferences relative to the transcription start site were detected based on their promoter SNP density profiles. Five novel candidate cis-element motifs were identified as consensus motifs of 17 sequence hexamers exhibiting increased sequence conservation combined with evidence of positional preferences, annotation information, and functional relevance for inducing correlated gene expression. Our study demonstrates that the currently available resolution of SNP data offers novel ways for the identification of functional genomic elements and the characterization of gene promoter sequences. PMID:24204023

  1. Characterization of "cis"-regulatory elements ("c"RE) associated with mammary gland function

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Bos taurus genome assembly has propelled dairy science into a new era; still, most of the information encoded in the genome has not yet been decoded. The human Encyclopedia of DNA Elements (ENCODE) project has spearheaded the identification and annotation of functional genomic elements in the hu...

  2. Separate elements of the TERMINAL FLOWER 1 cis-regulatory region integrate pathways to control flowering time and shoot meristem identity.

    PubMed

    Serrano-Mislata, Antonio; Fernández-Nohales, Pedro; Doménech, María J; Hanzawa, Yoshie; Bradley, Desmond; Madueño, Francisco

    2016-09-15

    TERMINAL FLOWER 1 (TFL1) is a key regulator of Arabidopsis plant architecture that responds to developmental and environmental signals to control flowering time and the fate of shoot meristems. TFL1 expression is dynamic, being found in all shoot meristems, but not in floral meristems, with the level and distribution changing throughout development. Using a variety of experimental approaches we have analysed the TFL1 promoter to elucidate its functional structure. TFL1 expression is based on distinct cis-regulatory regions, the most important being located 3' of the coding sequence. Our results indicate that TFL1 expression in the shoot apical versus lateral inflorescence meristems is controlled through distinct cis-regulatory elements, suggesting that different signals control expression in these meristem types. Moreover, we identified a cis-regulatory region necessary for TFL1 expression in the vegetative shoot and required for a wild-type flowering time, supporting that TFL1 expression in the vegetative meristem controls flowering time. Our study provides a model for the functional organisation of TFL1 cis-regulatory regions, contributing to our understanding of how developmental pathways are integrated at the genomic level of a key regulator to control plant architecture. PMID:27385013

  3. Novel green tissue-specific synthetic promoters and cis-regulatory elements in rice

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Rui; Zhu, Menglin; Ye, Rongjian; Liu, Zuoxiong; Zhou, Fei; Chen, Hao; Lin, Yongjun

    2015-01-01

    As an important part of synthetic biology, synthetic promoter has gradually become a hotspot in current biology. The purposes of the present study were to synthesize green tissue-specific promoters and to discover green tissue-specific cis-elements. We first assembled several regulatory sequences related to tissue-specific expression in different combinations, aiming to obtain novel green tissue-specific synthetic promoters. GUS assays of the transgenic plants indicated 5 synthetic promoters showed green tissue-specific expression patterns and different expression efficiencies in various tissues. Subsequently, we scanned and counted the cis-elements in different tissue-specific promoters based on the plant cis-elements database PLACE and the rice cDNA microarray database CREP for green tissue-specific cis-element discovery, resulting in 10 potential cis-elements. The flanking sequence of one potential core element (GEAT) was predicted by bioinformatics. Then, the combination of GEAT and its flanking sequence was functionally identified with synthetic promoter. GUS assays of the transgenic plants proved its green tissue-specificity. Furthermore, the function of GEAT flanking sequence was analyzed in detail with site-directed mutagenesis. Our study provides an example for the synthesis of rice tissue-specific promoters and develops a feasible method for screening and functional identification of tissue-specific cis-elements with their flanking sequences at the genome-wide level in rice. PMID:26655679

  4. Global identification of the genetic networks and cis-regulatory elements of the cold response in zebrafish

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Peng; Liu, Mingli; Zhang, Dong; Wang, Jinfeng; Niu, Hongbo; Liu, Yimeng; Wu, Zhichao; Han, Bingshe; Zhai, Wanying; Shen, Yu; Chen, Liangbiao

    2015-01-01

    The transcriptional programs of ectothermic teleosts are directly influenced by water temperature. However, the cis- and trans-factors governing cold responses are not well characterized. We profiled transcriptional changes in eight zebrafish tissues exposed to mildly and severely cold temperatures using RNA-Seq. A total of 1943 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were identified, from which 34 clusters representing distinct tissue and temperature response expression patterns were derived using the k-means fuzzy clustering algorithm. The promoter regions of the clustered DEGs that demonstrated strong co-regulation were analysed for enriched cis-regulatory elements with a motif discovery program, DREME. Seventeen motifs, ten known and seven novel, were identified, which covered 23% of the DEGs. Two motifs predicted to be the binding sites for the transcription factors Bcl6 and Jun, respectively, were chosen for experimental verification, and they demonstrated the expected cold-induced and cold-repressed patterns of gene regulation. Protein interaction modeling of the network components followed by experimental validation suggested that Jun physically interacts with Bcl6 and might be a hub factor that orchestrates the cold response in zebrafish. Thus, the methodology used and the regulatory networks uncovered in this study provide a foundation for exploring the mechanisms of cold adaptation in teleosts. PMID:26227973

  5. Computational discovery of soybean promoter cis-regulatory elements for the construction of soybean cyst nematode-inducible synthetic promoters.

    PubMed

    Liu, Wusheng; Mazarei, Mitra; Peng, Yanhui; Fethe, Michael H; Rudis, Mary R; Lin, Jingyu; Millwood, Reginald J; Arelli, Prakash R; Stewart, Charles Neal

    2014-10-01

    Computational methods offer great hope but limited accuracy in the prediction of functional cis-regulatory elements; improvements are needed to enable synthetic promoter design. We applied an ensemble strategy for de novo soybean cyst nematode (SCN)-inducible motif discovery among promoters of 18 co-expressed soybean genes that were selected from six reported microarray studies involving a compatible soybean-SCN interaction. A total of 116 overlapping motif regions (OMRs) were discovered bioinformatically that were identified by at least four out of seven bioinformatic tools. Using synthetic promoters, the inducibility of each OMR or motif itself was evaluated by co-localization of gain of function of an orange fluorescent protein reporter and the presence of SCN in transgenic soybean hairy roots. Among 16 OMRs detected from two experimentally confirmed SCN-inducible promoters, 11 OMRs (i.e. 68.75%) were experimentally confirmed to be SCN-inducible, leading to the discovery of 23 core motifs of 5- to 7-bp length, of which 14 are novel in plants. We found that a combination of the three best tools (i.e. SCOPE, W-AlignACE and Weeder) could detect all 23 core motifs. Thus, this strategy is a high-throughput approach for de novo motif discovery in soybean and offers great potential for novel motif discovery and synthetic promoter engineering for any plant and trait in crop biotechnology. PMID:24893752

  6. Computational Approaches to Identify Promoters and cis-Regulatory Elements in Plant Genomes1

    PubMed Central

    Rombauts, Stephane; Florquin, Kobe; Lescot, Magali; Marchal, Kathleen; Rouzé, Pierre; Van de Peer, Yves

    2003-01-01

    The identification of promoters and their regulatory elements is one of the major challenges in bioinformatics and integrates comparative, structural, and functional genomics. Many different approaches have been developed to detect conserved motifs in a set of genes that are either coregulated or orthologous. However, although recent approaches seem promising, in general, unambiguous identification of regulatory elements is not straightforward. The delineation of promoters is even harder, due to its complex nature, and in silico promoter prediction is still in its infancy. Here, we review the different approaches that have been developed for identifying promoters and their regulatory elements. We discuss the detection of cis-acting regulatory elements using word-counting or probabilistic methods (so-called “search by signal” methods) and the delineation of promoters by considering both sequence content and structural features (“search by content” methods). As an example of search by content, we explored in greater detail the association of promoters with CpG islands. However, due to differences in sequence content, the parameters used to detect CpG islands in humans and other vertebrates cannot be used for plants. Therefore, a preliminary attempt was made to define parameters that could possibly define CpG and CpNpG islands in Arabidopsis, by exploring the compositional landscape around the transcriptional start site. To this end, a data set of more than 5,000 gene sequences was built, including the promoter region, the 5′-untranslated region, and the first introns and coding exons. Preliminary analysis shows that promoter location based on the detection of potential CpG/CpNpG islands in the Arabidopsis genome is not straightforward. Nevertheless, because the landscape of CpG/CpNpG islands differs considerably between promoters and introns on the one side and exons (whether coding or not) on the other, more sophisticated approaches can probably be

  7. Identification and Characterization of a cis-Regulatory Element for Zygotic Gene Expression in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii

    PubMed Central

    Hamaji, Takashi; Lopez, David; Pellegrini, Matteo; Umen, James

    2016-01-01

    Upon fertilization Chlamydomonas reinhardtii zygotes undergo a program of differentiation into a diploid zygospore that is accompanied by transcription of hundreds of zygote-specific genes. We identified a distinct sequence motif we term a zygotic response element (ZYRE) that is highly enriched in promoter regions of C. reinhardtii early zygotic genes. A luciferase reporter assay was used to show that native ZYRE motifs within the promoter of zygotic gene ZYS3 or intron of zygotic gene DMT4 are necessary for zygotic induction. A synthetic luciferase reporter with a minimal promoter was used to show that ZYRE motifs introduced upstream are sufficient to confer zygotic upregulation, and that ZYRE-controlled zygotic transcription is dependent on the homeodomain transcription factor GSP1. We predict that ZYRE motifs will correspond to binding sites for the homeodomain proteins GSP1-GSM1 that heterodimerize and activate zygotic gene expression in early zygotes. PMID:27172209

  8. Identification and characterization of a cis-regulatory element for zygotic gene expression in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Hamaji, Takashi; Lopez, David; Pellegrini, Matteo; Umen, James

    2016-03-26

    Upon fertilization Chlamydomonas reinhardtii zygotes undergo a program of differentiation into a diploid zygospore that is accompanied by transcription of hundreds of zygote-specific genes. We identified a distinct sequence motif we term a zygotic response element (ZYRE) that is highly enriched in promoter regions of C. reinhardtii early zygotic genes. A luciferase reporter assay was used to show that native ZYRE motifs within the promoter of zygotic gene ZYS3 or intron of zygotic gene DMT4 are necessary for zygotic induction. A synthetic luciferase reporter with a minimal promoter was used to show that ZYRE motifs introduced upstream are sufficient tomore » confer zygotic upregulation, and that ZYRE-controlled zygotic transcription is dependent on the homeodomain transcription factor GSP1. Furthermore, we predict that ZYRE motifs will correspond to binding sites for the homeodomain proteins GSP1-GSM1 that heterodimerize and activate zygotic gene expression in early zygotes.« less

  9. Functional conservation of cis-regulatory elements of heat-shock genes over long evolutionary distances.

    PubMed

    He, Zhengying; Eichel, Kelsie; Ruvinsky, Ilya

    2011-01-01

    Transcriptional control of gene regulation is an intricate process that requires precise orchestration of a number of molecular components. Studying its evolution can serve as a useful model for understanding how complex molecular machines evolve. One way to investigate evolution of transcriptional regulation is to test the functions of cis-elements from one species in a distant relative. Previous results suggested that few, if any, tissue-specific promoters from Drosophila are faithfully expressed in C. elegans. Here we show that, in contrast, promoters of fly and human heat-shock genes are upregulated in C. elegans upon exposure to heat. Inducibility under conditions of heat shock may represent a relatively simple "on-off" response, whereas complex expression patterns require integration of multiple signals. Our results suggest that simpler aspects of regulatory logic may be retained over longer periods of evolutionary time, while more complex ones may be diverging more rapidly. PMID:21799932

  10. Identification and Characterization of a cis-Regulatory Element for Zygotic Gene Expression in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii.

    PubMed

    Hamaji, Takashi; Lopez, David; Pellegrini, Matteo; Umen, James

    2016-01-01

    Upon fertilization Chlamydomonas reinhardtii zygotes undergo a program of differentiation into a diploid zygospore that is accompanied by transcription of hundreds of zygote-specific genes. We identified a distinct sequence motif we term a zygotic response element (ZYRE) that is highly enriched in promoter regions of C reinhardtii early zygotic genes. A luciferase reporter assay was used to show that native ZYRE motifs within the promoter of zygotic gene ZYS3 or intron of zygotic gene DMT4 are necessary for zygotic induction. A synthetic luciferase reporter with a minimal promoter was used to show that ZYRE motifs introduced upstream are sufficient to confer zygotic upregulation, and that ZYRE-controlled zygotic transcription is dependent on the homeodomain transcription factor GSP1. We predict that ZYRE motifs will correspond to binding sites for the homeodomain proteins GSP1-GSM1 that heterodimerize and activate zygotic gene expression in early zygotes. PMID:27172209

  11. RAR/RXR binding dynamics distinguish pluripotency from differentiation associated cis-regulatory elements

    PubMed Central

    Chatagnon, Amandine; Veber, Philippe; Morin, Valérie; Bedo, Justin; Triqueneaux, Gérard; Sémon, Marie; Laudet, Vincent; d'Alché-Buc, Florence; Benoit, Gérard

    2015-01-01

    In mouse embryonic cells, ligand-activated retinoic acid receptors (RARs) play a key role in inhibiting pluripotency-maintaining genes and activating some major actors of cell differentiation. To investigate the mechanism underlying this dual regulation, we performed joint RAR/RXR ChIP-seq and mRNA-seq time series during the first 48 h of the RA-induced Primitive Endoderm (PrE) differentiation process in F9 embryonal carcinoma (EC) cells. We show here that this dual regulation is associated with RAR/RXR genomic redistribution during the differentiation process. In-depth analysis of RAR/RXR binding sites occupancy dynamics and composition show that in undifferentiated cells, RAR/RXR interact with genomic regions characterized by binding of pluripotency-associated factors and high prevalence of the non-canonical DR0-containing RA response element. By contrast, in differentiated cells, RAR/RXR bound regions are enriched in functional Sox17 binding sites and are characterized with a higher frequency of the canonical DR5 motif. Our data offer an unprecedentedly detailed view on the action of RA in triggering pluripotent cell differentiation and demonstrate that RAR/RXR action is mediated via two different sets of regulatory regions tightly associated with cell differentiation status. PMID:25897113

  12. RAR/RXR binding dynamics distinguish pluripotency from differentiation associated cis-regulatory elements.

    PubMed

    Chatagnon, Amandine; Veber, Philippe; Morin, Valérie; Bedo, Justin; Triqueneaux, Gérard; Sémon, Marie; Laudet, Vincent; d'Alché-Buc, Florence; Benoit, Gérard

    2015-05-26

    In mouse embryonic cells, ligand-activated retinoic acid receptors (RARs) play a key role in inhibiting pluripotency-maintaining genes and activating some major actors of cell differentiation. To investigate the mechanism underlying this dual regulation, we performed joint RAR/RXR ChIP-seq and mRNA-seq time series during the first 48 h of the RA-induced Primitive Endoderm (PrE) differentiation process in F9 embryonal carcinoma (EC) cells. We show here that this dual regulation is associated with RAR/RXR genomic redistribution during the differentiation process. In-depth analysis of RAR/RXR binding sites occupancy dynamics and composition show that in undifferentiated cells, RAR/RXR interact with genomic regions characterized by binding of pluripotency-associated factors and high prevalence of the non-canonical DR0-containing RA response element. By contrast, in differentiated cells, RAR/RXR bound regions are enriched in functional Sox17 binding sites and are characterized with a higher frequency of the canonical DR5 motif. Our data offer an unprecedentedly detailed view on the action of RA in triggering pluripotent cell differentiation and demonstrate that RAR/RXR action is mediated via two different sets of regulatory regions tightly associated with cell differentiation status. PMID:25897113

  13. FootprintDB: Analysis of Plant Cis-Regulatory Elements, Transcription Factors, and Binding Interfaces.

    PubMed

    Contreras-Moreira, Bruno; Sebastian, Alvaro

    2016-01-01

    FootprintDB is a database and search engine that compiles regulatory sequences from open access libraries of curated DNA cis-elements and motifs, and their associated transcription factors (TFs). It systematically annotates the binding interfaces of the TFs by exploiting protein-DNA complexes deposited in the Protein Data Bank. Each entry in footprintDB is thus a DNA motif linked to the protein sequence of the TF(s) known to recognize it, and in most cases, the set of predicted interface residues involved in specific recognition. This chapter explains step-by-step how to search for DNA motifs and protein sequences in footprintDB and how to focus the search to a particular organism. Two real-world examples are shown where this software was used to analyze transcriptional regulation in plants. Results are described with the aim of guiding users on their interpretation, and special attention is given to the choices users might face when performing similar analyses. PMID:27557773

  14. A genome-wide cis-regulatory element discovery method based on promoter sequences and gene co-expression networks

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Deciphering cis-regulatory networks has become an attractive yet challenging task. This paper presents a simple method for cis-regulatory network discovery which aims to avoid some of the common problems of previous approaches. Results Using promoter sequences and gene expression profiles as input, rather than clustering the genes by the expression data, our method utilizes co-expression neighborhood information for each individual gene, thereby overcoming the disadvantages of current clustering based models which may miss specific information for individual genes. In addition, rather than using a motif database as an input, it implements a simple motif count table for each enumerated k-mer for each gene promoter sequence. Thus, it can be used for species where previous knowledge of cis-regulatory motifs is unknown and has the potential to discover new transcription factor binding sites. Applications on Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Arabidopsis have shown that our method has a good prediction accuracy and outperforms a phylogenetic footprinting approach. Furthermore, the top ranked gene-motif regulatory clusters are evidently functionally co-regulated, and the regulatory relationships between the motifs and the enriched biological functions can often be confirmed by literature. Conclusions Since this method is simple and gene-specific, it can be readily utilized for insufficiently studied species or flexibly used as an additional step or data source for previous transcription regulatory networks discovery models. PMID:23368633

  15. A method for using direct injection of plasmid DNA to study cis-regulatory element activity in F0 Xenopus embryos and tadpoles.

    PubMed

    Wang, Chen; Szaro, Ben G

    2015-02-01

    The ability to express exogenous reporter genes in intact, externally developing embryos, such as Xenopus, is a powerful tool for characterizing the activity of cis-regulatory gene elements during development. Although methods exist for generating transgenic Xenopus lines, more simplified methods for use with F0 animals would significantly speed the characterization of these elements. We discovered that injecting 2-cell stage embryos with a plasmid bearing a ϕC31 integrase-targeted attB element and two dual β-globin HS4 insulators flanking a reporter transgene in opposite orientations relative to each other yielded persistent expression with sufficiently high penetrance for characterizing the activity of the promoter without having to coinject integrase RNA. Expression began appropriately during development and persisted into swimming tadpole stages without perturbing the expression of the cognate endogenous gene. Coinjected plasmids having the same elements but expressing different reporter proteins were reliably coexpressed within the same cells, providing a useful control for variations in injections between animals. To overcome the high propensity of these plasmids to undergo recombination, we developed a method for generating them using conventional cloning methods and DH5α cells for propagation. We conclude that this method offers a convenient and reliable way to evaluate the activity of cis-regulatory gene elements in the intact F0 embryo. PMID:25448690

  16. Role of conserved cis-regulatory elements in the post-transcriptional regulation of the human MECP2 gene involved in autism

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The MECP2 gene codes for methyl CpG binding protein 2 which regulates activities of other genes in the early development of the brain. Mutations in this gene have been associated with Rett syndrome, a form of autism. The purpose of this study was to investigate the role of evolutionarily conserved cis-elements in regulating the post-transcriptional expression of the MECP2 gene and to explore their possible correlations with a mutation that is known to cause mental retardation. Results A bioinformatics approach was used to map evolutionarily conserved cis-regulatory elements in the transcribed regions of the human MECP2 gene and its mammalian orthologs. Cis-regulatory motifs including G-quadruplexes, microRNA target sites, and AU-rich elements have gained significant importance because of their role in key biological processes and as therapeutic targets. We discovered in the 5′-UTR (untranslated region) of MECP2 mRNA a highly conserved G-quadruplex which overlapped a known deletion in Rett syndrome patients with decreased levels of MeCP2 protein. We believe that this 5′-UTR G-quadruplex could be involved in regulating MECP2 translation. We mapped additional evolutionarily conserved G-quadruplexes, microRNA target sites, and AU-rich elements in the key sections of both untranslated regions. Our studies suggest the regulation of translation, mRNA turnover, and development-related alternative MECP2 polyadenylation, putatively involving interactions of conserved cis-regulatory elements with their respective trans factors and complex interactions among the trans factors themselves. We discovered highly conserved G-quadruplex motifs that were more prevalent near alternative splice sites as compared to the constitutive sites of the MECP2 gene. We also identified a pair of overlapping G-quadruplexes at an alternative 5′ splice site that could potentially regulate alternative splicing in a negative as well as a positive way in the MECP2 pre

  17. Microevolution of cis-regulatory elements: an example from the pair-rule segmentation gene fushi tarazu in the Drosophila melanogaster subgroup.

    PubMed

    Bakkali, Mohammed

    2011-01-01

    The importance of non-coding DNAs that control transcription is ever noticeable, but the characterization and analysis of the evolution of such DNAs presents challenges not found in the analysis of coding sequences. In this study of the cis-regulatory elements of the pair rule segmentation gene fushi tarazu (ftz) I report the DNA sequences of ftz's zebra element (promoter) and a region containing the proximal enhancer from a total of 45 fly lines belonging to several populations of the species Drosophila melanogaster, D. simulans, D. sechellia, D. mauritiana, D. yakuba, D. teissieri, D. orena and D. erecta. Both elements evolve at slower rate than ftz synonymous sites, thus reflecting their functional importance. The promoter evolves more slowly than the average for ftz's coding sequence while, on average, the enhancer evolves more rapidly, suggesting more functional constraint and effective purifying selection on the former. Comparative analysis of the number and nature of base substitutions failed to detect significant evidence for positive/adaptive selection in transcription-factor-binding sites. These seem to evolve at similar rates to regions not known to bind transcription factors. Although this result reflects the evolutionary flexibility of the transcription factor binding sites, it also suggests a complex and still not completely understood nature of even the characterized cis-regulatory sequences. The latter seem to contain more functional parts than those currently identified, some of which probably transcription factor binding. This study illustrates ways in which functional assignments of sequences within cis-acting sequences can be used in the search for adaptive evolution, but also highlights difficulties in how such functional assignment and analysis can be carried out. PMID:22073317

  18. Germ line and embryonic expression of Fex, a member of the Drosophila F-element retrotransposon family, is mediated by an internal cis-regulatory control region.

    PubMed Central

    Kerber, B; Fellert, S; Taubert, H; Hoch, M

    1996-01-01

    The F elements of Drosophila melanogaster belong to the superfamily of long interspersed nucleotide element retrotransposons. To date, F-element transcription has not been detected in flies. Here we describe the isolation of a member of the F-element family, termed Fex, which is transcribed in specific cells of the female and male germ lines and in various tissues during embryogenesis of D. melanogaster. Sequence analysis revealed that this element contains two complete open reading frames coding for a putative nucleic acid-binding protein and a putative reverse transcriptase. Functional analysis of the 5' region, using germ line transformation of Fex-lacZ reporter gene constructs, demonstrates that major aspects of tissue-specific Fex expression are controlled by internal cis-acting elements that lie in the putative coding region of open reading frame 1. These sequences mediate dynamic gene expression in eight expression domains during embryonic and germ line development. The capacity of the cis-regulatory region of the Fex element to mediate such complex expression patterns is unique among members of the long interspersed nucleotide element superfamily of retrotransposons and is reminiscent of regulatory regions of developmental control genes. PMID:8649411

  19. Integrative Modeling of eQTLs and Cis-Regulatory Elements Suggests Mechanisms Underlying Cell Type Specificity of eQTLs

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Christopher D.; Mangravite, Lara M.; Engelhardt, Barbara E.

    2013-01-01

    Genetic variants in cis-regulatory elements or trans-acting regulators frequently influence the quantity and spatiotemporal distribution of gene transcription. Recent interest in expression quantitative trait locus (eQTL) mapping has paralleled the adoption of genome-wide association studies (GWAS) for the analysis of complex traits and disease in humans. Under the hypothesis that many GWAS associations tag non-coding SNPs with small effects, and that these SNPs exert phenotypic control by modifying gene expression, it has become common to interpret GWAS associations using eQTL data. To fully exploit the mechanistic interpretability of eQTL-GWAS comparisons, an improved understanding of the genetic architecture and causal mechanisms of cell type specificity of eQTLs is required. We address this need by performing an eQTL analysis in three parts: first we identified eQTLs from eleven studies on seven cell types; then we integrated eQTL data with cis-regulatory element (CRE) data from the ENCODE project; finally we built a set of classifiers to predict the cell type specificity of eQTLs. The cell type specificity of eQTLs is associated with eQTL SNP overlap with hundreds of cell type specific CRE classes, including enhancer, promoter, and repressive chromatin marks, regions of open chromatin, and many classes of DNA binding proteins. These associations provide insight into the molecular mechanisms generating the cell type specificity of eQTLs and the mode of regulation of corresponding eQTLs. Using a random forest classifier with cell specific CRE-SNP overlap as features, we demonstrate the feasibility of predicting the cell type specificity of eQTLs. We then demonstrate that CREs from a trait-associated cell type can be used to annotate GWAS associations in the absence of eQTL data for that cell type. We anticipate that such integrative, predictive modeling of cell specificity will improve our ability to understand the mechanistic basis of human complex phenotypic

  20. Distinct cis-Regulatory Elements from the Dlx1/Dlx2 Locus Mark Different Progenitor Cell Populations in the Ganglionic Eminences and Different Subtypes of Adult Cortical Interneurons

    PubMed Central

    Ghanem, Noël; Yu, Man; Long, Jason; Hatch, Gary; Rubenstein, John L. R.; Ekker, Marc

    2016-01-01

    Distinct subtypes of cortical GABAergic interneurons provide inhibitory signals that are indispensable for neural network function. The Dlx homeobox genes have a central role in regulating their development and function. We have characterized the activity of three cis-regulatory sequences involved in forebrain expression of vertebrate Dlx genes: upstream regulatory element 2 (URE2), I12b, and I56i. The three regulatory elements display regional and temporal differences in their activities within the lateral ganglionic eminence (LGE), medial ganglionic eminence (MGE), and caudal ganglionic eminence (CGE) and label distinct populations of tangentially migrating neurons at embryonic day 12.5 (E12.5) and E13.5. We provide evidence that the dorsomedial and ventral MGE are distinct sources of tangentially migrating neurons during midgestation. In the adult cortex, URE2 and I12b/I56i are differentially expressed in parvalbumin-, calretinin-, neuropeptide Y-, and neuronal nitric oxide synthase-positive interneurons; I12b and I56i were specifically active in somatostatin-, vasoactive intestinal peptide-, and calbindin-positive interneurons. These data suggest that interneuron subtypes use distinct combinations of Dlx1/Dlx2 enhancers from the time they are specified through adulthood. PMID:17494687

  1. Identification of Predictive Cis-Regulatory Elements Using a Discriminative Objective Function and a Dynamic Search Space.

    PubMed

    Karnik, Rahul; Beer, Michael A

    2015-01-01

    The generation of genomic binding or accessibility data from massively parallel sequencing technologies such as ChIP-seq and DNase-seq continues to accelerate. Yet state-of-the-art computational approaches for the identification of DNA binding motifs often yield motifs of weak predictive power. Here we present a novel computational algorithm called MotifSpec, designed to find predictive motifs, in contrast to over-represented sequence elements. The key distinguishing feature of this algorithm is that it uses a dynamic search space and a learned threshold to find discriminative motifs in combination with the modeling of motifs using a full PWM (position weight matrix) rather than k-mer words or regular expressions. We demonstrate that our approach finds motifs corresponding to known binding specificities in several mammalian ChIP-seq datasets, and that our PWMs classify the ChIP-seq signals with accuracy comparable to, or marginally better than motifs from the best existing algorithms. In other datasets, our algorithm identifies novel motifs where other methods fail. Finally, we apply this algorithm to detect motifs from expression datasets in C. elegans using a dynamic expression similarity metric rather than fixed expression clusters, and find novel predictive motifs. PMID:26465884

  2. Identification of Predictive Cis-Regulatory Elements Using a Discriminative Objective Function and a Dynamic Search Space

    PubMed Central

    Karnik, Rahul; Beer, Michael A.

    2015-01-01

    The generation of genomic binding or accessibility data from massively parallel sequencing technologies such as ChIP-seq and DNase-seq continues to accelerate. Yet state-of-the-art computational approaches for the identification of DNA binding motifs often yield motifs of weak predictive power. Here we present a novel computational algorithm called MotifSpec, designed to find predictive motifs, in contrast to over-represented sequence elements. The key distinguishing feature of this algorithm is that it uses a dynamic search space and a learned threshold to find discriminative motifs in combination with the modeling of motifs using a full PWM (position weight matrix) rather than k-mer words or regular expressions. We demonstrate that our approach finds motifs corresponding to known binding specificities in several mammalian ChIP-seq datasets, and that our PWMs classify the ChIP-seq signals with accuracy comparable to, or marginally better than motifs from the best existing algorithms. In other datasets, our algorithm identifies novel motifs where other methods fail. Finally, we apply this algorithm to detect motifs from expression datasets in C. elegans using a dynamic expression similarity metric rather than fixed expression clusters, and find novel predictive motifs. PMID:26465884

  3. Cis-Regulatory Elements Determine Germline Specificity and Expression Level of an Isopentenyltransferase Gene in Sperm Cells of Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jinghua; Yuan, Tong; Duan, Xiaomeng; Wei, Xiaoping; Shi, Tao; Li, Jia; Russell, Scott D; Gou, Xiaoping

    2016-03-01

    Flowering plant sperm cells transcribe a divergent and complex complement of genes. To examine promoter function, we chose an isopentenyltransferase gene known as PzIPT1. This gene is highly selectively transcribed in one sperm cell morphotype of Plumbago zeylanica, which preferentially fuses with the central cell during fertilization and is thus a founding cell of the primary endosperm. In transgenic Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana), PzIPT1 promoter displays activity in both sperm cells and upon progressive promoter truncation from the 5'-end results in a progressive decrease in reporter production, consistent with occurrence of multiple enhancer sites. Cytokinin-dependent protein binding motifs are identified in the promoter sequence, which respond with stimulation by cytokinin. Expression of PzIPT1 promoter in sperm cells confers specificity independently of previously reported Germline Restrictive Silencer Factor binding sequence. Instead, a cis-acting regulatory region consisting of two duplicated 6-bp Male Gamete Selective Activation (MGSA) motifs occurs near the site of transcription initiation. Disruption of this sequence-specific site inactivates expression of a GFP reporter gene in sperm cells. Multiple copies of the MGSA motif fused with the minimal CaMV35S promoter elements confer reporter gene expression in sperm cells. Similar duplicated MGSA motifs are also identified from promoter sequences of sperm cell-expressed genes in Arabidopsis, suggesting selective activation is possibly a common mechanism for regulation of gene expression in sperm cells of flowering plants. PMID:26739233

  4. Modeling DNA sequence-based cis-regulatory gene networks.

    PubMed

    Bolouri, Hamid; Davidson, Eric H

    2002-06-01

    Gene network analysis requires computationally based models which represent the functional architecture of regulatory interactions, and which provide directly testable predictions. The type of model that is useful is constrained by the particular features of developmentally active cis-regulatory systems. These systems function by processing diverse regulatory inputs, generating novel regulatory outputs. A computational model which explicitly accommodates this basic concept was developed earlier for the cis-regulatory system of the endo16 gene of the sea urchin. This model represents the genetically mandated logic functions that the system executes, but also shows how time-varying kinetic inputs are processed in different circumstances into particular kinetic outputs. The same basic design features can be utilized to construct models that connect the large number of cis-regulatory elements constituting developmental gene networks. The ultimate aim of the network models discussed here is to represent the regulatory relationships among the genomic control systems of the genes in the network, and to state their functional meaning. The target site sequences of the cis-regulatory elements of these genes constitute the physical basis of the network architecture. Useful models for developmental regulatory networks must represent the genetic logic by which the system operates, but must also be capable of explaining the real time dynamics of cis-regulatory response as kinetic input and output data become available. Most importantly, however, such models must display in a direct and transparent manner fundamental network design features such as intra- and intercellular feedback circuitry; the sources of parallel inputs into each cis-regulatory element; gene battery organization; and use of repressive spatial inputs in specification and boundary formation. Successful network models lead to direct tests of key architectural features by targeted cis-regulatory analysis. PMID

  5. A novel pairwise comparison method for in silico discovery of statistically significant cis-regulatory elements in eukaryotic promoter regions: application to Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Shamloo-Dashtpagerdi, Roohollah; Razi, Hooman; Aliakbari, Massumeh; Lindlöf, Angelica; Ebrahimi, Mahdi; Ebrahimie, Esmaeil

    2015-01-01

    Cis regulatory elements (CREs), located within promoter regions, play a significant role in the blueprint for transcriptional regulation of genes. There is a growing interest to study the combinatorial nature of CREs including presence or absence of CREs, the number of occurrences of each CRE, as well as of their order and location relative to their target genes. Comparative promoter analysis has been shown to be a reliable strategy to test the significance of each component of promoter architecture. However, it remains unclear what level of difference in the number of occurrences of each CRE is of statistical significance in order to explain different expression patterns of two genes. In this study, we present a novel statistical approach for pairwise comparison of promoters of Arabidopsis genes in the context of number of occurrences of each CRE within the promoters. First, using the sample of 1000 Arabidopsis promoters, the results of the goodness of fit test and non-parametric analysis revealed that the number of occurrences of CREs in a promoter sequence is Poisson distributed. As a promoter sequence contained functional and non-functional CREs, we addressed the issue of the statistical distribution of functional CREs by analyzing the ChIP-seq datasets. The results showed that the number of occurrences of functional CREs over the genomic regions was determined as being Poisson distributed. In accordance with the obtained distribution of CREs occurrences, we suggested the Audic and Claverie (AC) test to compare two promoters based on the number of occurrences for the CREs. Superiority of the AC test over Chi-square (2×2) and Fisher's exact tests was also shown, as the AC test was able to detect a higher number of significant CREs. The two case studies on the Arabidopsis genes were performed in order to biologically verify the pairwise test for promoter comparison. Consequently, a number of CREs with significantly different occurrences was identified between

  6. Cis-regulatory mutations in human disease

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    Cis-acting regulatory sequences are required for the proper temporal and spatial control of gene expression. Variation in gene expression is highly heritable and a significant determinant of human disease susceptibility. The diversity of human genetic diseases attributed, in whole or in part, to mutations in non-coding regulatory sequences is on the rise. Improvements in genome-wide methods of associating genetic variation with human disease and predicting DNA with cis-regulatory potential are two of the major reasons for these recent advances. This review will highlight select examples from the literature that have successfully integrated genetic and genomic approaches to uncover the molecular basis by which cis-regulatory mutations alter gene expression and contribute to human disease. The fine mapping of disease-causing variants has led to the discovery of novel cis-acting regulatory elements that, in some instances, are located as far away as 1.5 Mb from the target gene. In other cases, the prior knowledge of the regulatory landscape surrounding the gene of interest aided in the selection of enhancers for mutation screening. The success of these studies should provide a framework for following up on the large number of genome-wide association studies that have identified common variants in non-coding regions of the genome that associate with increased risk of human diseases including, diabetes, autism, Crohn's, colorectal cancer, and asthma, to name a few. PMID:19641089

  7. AthaMap web tools for database-assisted identification of combinatorial cis-regulatory elements and the display of highly conserved transcription factor binding sites in Arabidopsis thaliana.

    PubMed

    Steffens, Nils Ole; Galuschka, Claudia; Schindler, Martin; Bülow, Lorenz; Hehl, Reinhard

    2005-07-01

    The AthaMap database generates a map of cis-regulatory elements for the Arabidopsis thaliana genome. AthaMap contains more than 7.4 x 10(6) putative binding sites for 36 transcription factors (TFs) from 16 different TF families. A newly implemented functionality allows the display of subsets of higher conserved transcription factor binding sites (TFBSs). Furthermore, a web tool was developed that permits a user-defined search for co-localizing cis-regulatory elements. The user can specify individually the level of conservation for each TFBS and a spacer range between them. This web tool was employed for the identification of co-localizing sites of known interacting TFs and TFs containing two DNA-binding domains. More than 1.8 x 10(5) combinatorial elements were annotated in the AthaMap database. These elements can also be used to identify more complex co-localizing elements consisting of up to four TFBSs. The AthaMap database and the connected web tools are a valuable resource for the analysis and the prediction of gene expression regulation at http://www.athamap.de. PMID:15980498

  8. The role of cis regulatory evolution in maize domestication.

    PubMed

    Lemmon, Zachary H; Bukowski, Robert; Sun, Qi; Doebley, John F

    2014-11-01

    Gene expression differences between divergent lineages caused by modification of cis regulatory elements are thought to be important in evolution. We assayed genome-wide cis and trans regulatory differences between maize and its wild progenitor, teosinte, using deep RNA sequencing in F1 hybrid and parent inbred lines for three tissue types (ear, leaf and stem). Pervasive regulatory variation was observed with approximately 70% of ∼17,000 genes showing evidence of regulatory divergence between maize and teosinte. However, many fewer genes (1,079 genes) show consistent cis differences with all sampled maize and teosinte lines. For ∼70% of these 1,079 genes, the cis differences are specific to a single tissue. The number of genes with cis regulatory differences is greatest for ear tissue, which underwent a drastic transformation in form during domestication. As expected from the domestication bottleneck, maize possesses less cis regulatory variation than teosinte with this deficit greatest for genes showing maize-teosinte cis regulatory divergence, suggesting selection on cis regulatory differences during domestication. Consistent with selection on cis regulatory elements, genes with cis effects correlated strongly with genes under positive selection during maize domestication and improvement, while genes with trans regulatory effects did not. We observed a directional bias such that genes with cis differences showed higher expression of the maize allele more often than the teosinte allele, suggesting domestication favored up-regulation of gene expression. Finally, this work documents the cis and trans regulatory changes between maize and teosinte in over 17,000 genes for three tissues. PMID:25375861

  9. A G-string positive cis-regulatory element in the LpS1 promoter binds two distinct nuclear factors distributed non-uniformly in Lytechinus pictus embryos.

    PubMed

    Xiang, M; Lu, S Y; Musso, M; Karsenty, G; Klein, W H

    1991-12-01

    The LpS1 alpha and beta genes of Lytechinus pictus are activated at the late cleavage stage of embryogenesis, with LpS1 mRNAs accumulating only in lineages contributing to aboral ectoderm. We had shown previously that 762 bp of 5' flanking DNA from the LpS1 beta gene was sufficient for proper temporal and aboral ectoderm specific expression. In the present study, we identified a strong positive cis-regulatory element at -70 bp to -75 bp in the LpS1 beta promoter with the sequence (G)6 and a similar, more distal cis-element at -721 bp to -726 bp. The proximal 'G-string' element interacted with two nuclear factors, one specific to ectoderm and one to endoderm/mesoderm nuclear extracts, whereas the distal G-string element interacted only with the ectoderm factor. The ectoderm and endoderm/mesoderm G-string factors were distinct based on their migratory behavior in electrophoretic mobility shift assays, binding site specificities, salt optima and EDTA sensitivity. The proximal G-string element shared homology with a binding site for the mammalian transcription factor IF1, a protein that binds to negative cis-regulatory elements in the mouse alpha 1(I) and alpha 2(I) collagen gene promoters. Competition experiments using wild-type and mutant oligonucleotides indicated that the ectoderm G-string factor and IF1 have similar recognition sites. Partially purified IF1 specifically bound to an oligonucleotide containing the proximal G-string of LpS1 beta. From our results, we suggest that the ectoderm G-string factor, a member of the G-rich DNA-binding protein family, activates the LpS1 gene in aboral ectoderm cells by binding to the LpS1 promoter at the proximal G-string site. PMID:1811948

  10. CREME: Cis-Regulatory Module Explorer for the Human Genome

    SciTech Connect

    Loots, G G; Sharan, R; Ovcharenko, I; Ben-Hur, A

    2004-02-11

    The binding of transcription factors to specific regulatory sequence elements is a primary mechanism for controlling gene transcription. Eukaryotic genes are often regulated by several transcription factors, whose binding sites are tightly clustered and form cis-regulatory modules. In this paper we present a web-server, CREME, for identifying and visualizing cis-regulatory modules in the promoter regions of a given set of potentially co-regulated genes. CREME relies on a database of putative transcription factor binding sites that have been annotated across the human genome using a library of position weight matrices and evolutionary conservation with the mouse and rat genomes. A search algorithm is applied to this dataset to identify combinations of transcription factors whose binding sites tend to co-occur in close proximity in the promoter regions of the input gene set. The identified cis-regulatory modules are statistically scored and significant combinations are reported and graphically visualized. Our web-server is available at http://creme.dcode.org/.

  11. Theria-Specific Homeodomain and cis-Regulatory Element Evolution of the Dlx3–4 Bigene Cluster in 12 Different Mammalian Species

    PubMed Central

    SUMIYAMA, KENTA; MIYAKE, TSUTOMU; GRIMWOOD, JANE; STUART, ANDREW; DICKSON, MARK; SCHMUTZ, JEREMY; RUDDLE, FRANK H.; MYERS, RICHARD M.; AMEMIYA, CHRIS T.

    2013-01-01

    The mammalian Dlx3 and Dlx4 genes are configured as a bigene cluster, and their respective expression patterns are controlled temporally and spatially by cis-elements that largely reside within the intergenic region of the cluster. Previous work revealed that there are conspicuously conserved elements within the intergenic region of the Dlx3–4 bigene clusters of mouse and human. In this paper we have extended these analyses to include 12 additional mammalian taxa (including a marsupial and a monotreme) in order to better define the nature and molecular evolutionary trends of the coding and non-coding functional elements among morphologically divergent mammals. Dlx3–4 regions were fully sequenced from 12 divergent taxa of interest. We identified three theria-specific amino acid replacements in homeodomain of Dlx4 gene that functions in placenta. Sequence analyses of constrained nucleotide sites in the intergenic non-coding region showed that many of the intergenic conserved elements are highly conserved and have evolved slowly within the mammals. In contrast, a branchial arch/craniofacial enhancer I37-2 exhibited accelerated evolution at the branch between the monotreme and therian common ancestor despite being highly conserved among therian species. Functional analysis of I37-2 in transgenic mice has shown that the equivalent region of the platypus fails to drive transcriptional activity in branchial arches. These observations, taken together with our molecular evolutionary data, suggest that theria-specific episodic changes in the I37-2 element may have contributed to craniofacial innovation at the base of the mammalian lineage. PMID:22951979

  12. Theria-specific homeodomain and cis-regulatory element evolution of the Dlx3-4 bigene cluster in 12 different mammalian species.

    PubMed

    Sumiyama, Kenta; Miyake, Tsutomu; Grimwood, Jane; Stuart, Andrew; Dickson, Mark; Schmutz, Jeremy; Ruddle, Frank H; Myers, Richard M; Amemiya, Chris T

    2012-12-01

    The mammalian Dlx3 and Dlx4 genes are configured as a bigene cluster, and their respective expression patterns are controlled temporally and spatially by cis-elements that largely reside within the intergenic region of the cluster. Previous work revealed that there are conspicuously conserved elements within the intergenic region of the Dlx3-4 bigene clusters of mouse and human. In this paper we have extended these analyses to include 12 additional mammalian taxa (including a marsupial and a monotreme) in order to better define the nature and molecular evolutionary trends of the coding and non-coding functional elements among morphologically divergent mammals. Dlx3-4 regions were fully sequenced from 12 divergent taxa of interest. We identified three theria-specific amino acid replacements in homeodomain of Dlx4 gene that functions in placenta. Sequence analyses of constrained nucleotide sites in the intergenic non-coding region showed that many of the intergenic conserved elements are highly conserved and have evolved slowly within the mammals. In contrast, a branchial arch/craniofacial enhancer I37-2 exhibited accelerated evolution at the branch between the monotreme and therian common ancestor despite being highly conserved among therian species. Functional analysis of I37-2 in transgenic mice has shown that the equivalent region of the platypus fails to drive transcriptional activity in branchial arches. These observations, taken together with our molecular evolutionary data, suggest that theria-specific episodic changes in the I37-2 element may have contributed to craniofacial innovation at the base of the mammalian lineage. PMID:22951979

  13. Cis-Regulatory Elements Determine Germline Specificity and Expression Level of an Isopentenyltransferase Gene in Sperm Cells of Arabidopsis1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Yuan, Tong; Duan, Xiaomeng; Wei, Xiaoping; Li, Jia

    2016-01-01

    Flowering plant sperm cells transcribe a divergent and complex complement of genes. To examine promoter function, we chose an isopentenyltransferase gene known as PzIPT1. This gene is highly selectively transcribed in one sperm cell morphotype of Plumbago zeylanica, which preferentially fuses with the central cell during fertilization and is thus a founding cell of the primary endosperm. In transgenic Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana), PzIPT1 promoter displays activity in both sperm cells and upon progressive promoter truncation from the 5′-end results in a progressive decrease in reporter production, consistent with occurrence of multiple enhancer sites. Cytokinin-dependent protein binding motifs are identified in the promoter sequence, which respond with stimulation by cytokinin. Expression of PzIPT1 promoter in sperm cells confers specificity independently of previously reported Germline Restrictive Silencer Factor binding sequence. Instead, a cis-acting regulatory region consisting of two duplicated 6-bp Male Gamete Selective Activation (MGSA) motifs occurs near the site of transcription initiation. Disruption of this sequence-specific site inactivates expression of a GFP reporter gene in sperm cells. Multiple copies of the MGSA motif fused with the minimal CaMV35S promoter elements confer reporter gene expression in sperm cells. Similar duplicated MGSA motifs are also identified from promoter sequences of sperm cell-expressed genes in Arabidopsis, suggesting selective activation is possibly a common mechanism for regulation of gene expression in sperm cells of flowering plants. PMID:26739233

  14. The search for cis-regulatory driver mutations in cancer genomes.

    PubMed

    Poulos, Rebecca C; Sloane, Mathew A; Hesson, Luke B; Wong, Jason W H

    2015-10-20

    With the advent of high-throughput and relatively inexpensive whole-genome sequencing technology, the focus of cancer research has begun to shift toward analyses of somatic mutations in non-coding cis-regulatory elements of the cancer genome. Cis-regulatory elements play an important role in gene regulation, with mutations in these elements potentially resulting in changes to the expression of linked genes. The recent discoveries of recurrent TERT promoter mutations in melanoma, and recurrent mutations that create a super-enhancer regulating TAL1 expression in T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (T-ALL), have sparked significant interest in the search for other somatic cis-regulatory mutations driving cancer development. In this review, we look more closely at the TERT promoter and TAL1 enhancer alterations and use these examples to ask whether other cis-regulatory mutations may play a role in cancer susceptibility. In doing so, we make observations from the data emerging from recent research in this field, and describe the experimental and analytical approaches which could be adopted in the hope of better uncovering the true functional significance of somatic cis-regulatory mutations in cancer. PMID:26356674

  15. A Cis-Regulatory Map of the Drosophila Genome

    PubMed Central

    Nègre, Nicolas; Brown, Christopher D.; Ma, Lijia; Bristow, Christopher Aaron; Miller, Steven W.; Wagner, Ulrich; Kheradpour, Pouya; Eaton, Matthew L.; Loriaux, Paul; Sealfon, Rachel; Li, Zirong; Ishii, Haruhiko; Spokony, Rebecca F.; Chen, Jia; Hwang, Lindsay; Cheng, Chao; Auburn, Richard P.; Davis, Melissa B.; Domanus, Marc; Shah, Parantu K.; Morrison, Carolyn A.; Zieba, Jennifer; Suchy, Sarah; Senderowicz, Lionel; Victorsen, Alec; Bild, Nicholas A.; Grundstad, A. Jason; Hanley, David; MacAlpine, David M.; Mannervik, Mattias; Venken, Koen; Bellen, Hugo; White, Robert; Russell, Steven; Grossman, Robert L.; Ren, Bing; Gerstein, Mark; Posakony, James W.; Kellis, Manolis; White, Kevin P.

    2011-01-01

    Systematic annotation of gene regulatory elements is a major challenge in genome science. Direct mapping of chromatin modification marks and transcriptional factor binding sites genome-wide 1,2 has successfully identified specific subtypes of regulatory elements 3. In Drosophila several pioneering studies have provided genome-wide identification of Polycomb-Response Elements 4, chromatin states 5, transcription factor binding sites (TFBS) 6–9, PolII regulation 8, and insulator elements 10; however, comprehensive annotation of the regulatory genome remains a significant challenge. Here we describe results from the modENCODE cis-regulatory annotation project. We produced a map of the Drosophila melanogaster regulatory genome based on more than 300 chromatin immuno-precipitation (ChIP) datasets for eight chromatin features, five histone deacetylases (HDACs) and thirty-eight site-specific transcription factors (TFs) at different stages of development. Using these data we inferred more than 20,000 candidate regulatory elements and we validated a subset of predictions for promoters, enhancers, and insulators in vivo. We also identified nearly 2,000 genomic regions of dense TF binding associated with chromatin activity and accessibility. We discovered hundreds of new TF co-binding relationships and defined a TF network with over 800 potential regulatory relationships. PMID:21430782

  16. Deciphering cis-regulatory control in inflammatory cells.

    PubMed

    Ghisletti, Serena; Natoli, Gioacchino

    2013-01-01

    In innate immune system cells, such as macrophages and dendritic cells, deployment of inducible gene expression programmes in response to microbes and danger signals requires highly precise regulatory mechanisms. The inflammatory response has to be tailored based on both the triggering stimulus and its dose, and it has to be unfolded in a kinetically complex manner that suits the different phases of the inflammatory process. Genomic characterization of regulatory elements in this context indicated that transcriptional regulators involved in macrophage specification act as pioneer transcription factors (TFs) that generate regions of open chromatin that enable the recruitment of TFs activated in response to external inputs. Therefore, competence for responses to a specific stimulus is programmed at an early stage of differentiation by factors involved in lineage commitment and maintenance of cell identity, which are responsible for the organization of a cell-type-specific cis-regulatory repertoire. The basic functional and organizational principles that regulate inflammatory gene expression in professional cells of the innate immune system provide general paradigms on the interplay between differentiation and environmental responses. PMID:23650641

  17. Cis-Regulatory Changes Associated with a Recent Mating System Shift and Floral Adaptation in Capsella.

    PubMed

    Steige, Kim A; Reimegård, Johan; Koenig, Daniel; Scofield, Douglas G; Slotte, Tanja

    2015-10-01

    The selfing syndrome constitutes a suite of floral and reproductive trait changes that have evolved repeatedly across many evolutionary lineages in response to the shift to selfing. Convergent evolution of the selfing syndrome suggests that these changes are adaptive, yet our understanding of the detailed molecular genetic basis of the selfing syndrome remains limited. Here, we investigate the role of cis-regulatory changes during the recent evolution of the selfing syndrome in Capsella rubella, which split from the outcrosser Capsella grandiflora less than 200 ka. We assess allele-specific expression (ASE) in leaves and flower buds at a total of 18,452 genes in three interspecific F1 C. grandiflora x C. rubella hybrids. Using a hierarchical Bayesian approach that accounts for technical variation using genomic reads, we find evidence for extensive cis-regulatory changes. On average, 44% of the assayed genes show evidence of ASE; however, only 6% show strong allelic expression biases. Flower buds, but not leaves, show an enrichment of cis-regulatory changes in genomic regions responsible for floral and reproductive trait divergence between C. rubella and C. grandiflora. We further detected an excess of heterozygous transposable element (TE) insertions near genes with ASE, and TE insertions targeted by uniquely mapping 24-nt small RNAs were associated with reduced expression of nearby genes. Our results suggest that cis-regulatory changes have been important during the recent adaptive floral evolution in Capsella and that differences in TE dynamics between selfing and outcrossing species could be important for rapid regulatory divergence in association with mating system shifts. PMID:26318184

  18. Abundant raw material for cis-regulatory evolution in humans

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rockman, Matthew V.; Wray, Gregory A.

    2002-01-01

    Changes in gene expression and regulation--due in particular to the evolution of cis-regulatory DNA sequences--may underlie many evolutionary changes in phenotypes, yet little is known about the distribution of such variation in populations. We present in this study the first survey of experimentally validated functional cis-regulatory polymorphism. These data are derived from more than 140 polymorphisms involved in the regulation of 107 genes in Homo sapiens, the eukaryote species with the most available data. We find that functional cis-regulatory variation is widespread in the human genome and that the consequent variation in gene expression is twofold or greater for 63% of the genes surveyed. Transcription factor-DNA interactions are highly polymorphic, and regulatory interactions have been gained and lost within human populations. On average, humans are heterozygous at more functional cis-regulatory sites (>16,000) than at amino acid positions (<13,000), in part because of an overrepresentation among the former in multiallelic tandem repeat variation, especially (AC)(n) dinucleotide microsatellites. The role of microsatellites in gene expression variation may provide a larger store of heritable phenotypic variation, and a more rapid mutational input of such variation, than has been realized. Finally, we outline the distinctive consequences of cis-regulatory variation for the genotype-phenotype relationship, including ubiquitous epistasis and genotype-by-environment interactions, as well as underappreciated modes of pleiotropy and overdominance. Ordinary small-scale mutations contribute to pervasive variation in transcription rates and consequently to patterns of human phenotypic variation.

  19. Toward a Genome-Wide Reconstruction of Cis-Regulatory Networks in the Human Genome

    PubMed Central

    Cecchini, Katharine R.; Banerjee, A. Raja; Kim, Tae Hoon

    2009-01-01

    The vast amount of recent progress made on the sequence of the human genome has allowed an unprecedented examination of cis-regulatory networks. These networks consist of functional elements such as promoters, enhancers, silencers, and insulators, and their coordinated activity is responsible for regulation of gene expression. Recent studies surveyed the entire genome, identifying novel elements and evaluating functional differences in respect to development. These investigations present the first steps towards a global regulatory map for expression in the human genome. PMID:19560550

  20. cis-Regulatory control of the initial neurogenic pattern of onecut gene expression in the sea urchin embryo.

    PubMed

    Barsi, Julius C; Davidson, Eric H

    2016-01-01

    Specification of the ciliated band (CB) of echinoid embryos executes three spatial functions essential for postgastrular organization. These are establishment of a band about 5 cells wide which delimits and bounds other embryonic territories; definition of a neurogenic domain within this band; and generation within it of arrays of ciliary cells that bear the special long cilia from which the structure derives its name. In Strongylocentrotus purpuratus the spatial coordinates of the future ciliated band are initially and exactly determined by the disposition of a ring of cells that transcriptionally activate the onecut homeodomain regulatory gene, beginning in blastula stage, long before the appearance of the CB per se. Thus the cis-regulatory apparatus that governs onecut expression in the blastula directly reveals the genomic sequence code by which these aspects of the spatial organization of the embryo are initially determined. We screened the entire onecut locus and its flanking region for transcriptionally active cis-regulatory elements, and by means of BAC recombineered deletions identified three separated and required cis-regulatory modules that execute different functions. The operating logic of the crucial spatial control module accounting for the spectacularly precise and beautiful early onecut expression domain depends on spatial repression. Previously predicted oral ectoderm and aboral ectoderm repressors were identified by cis-regulatory mutation as the products of goosecoid and irxa genes respectively, while the pan-ectodermal activator SoxB1 supplies a transcriptional driver function. PMID:26522848

  1. Exonic remnants of whole-genome duplication reveal cis-regulatory function of coding exons

    PubMed Central

    Dong, Xianjun; Navratilova, Pavla; Fredman, David; Drivenes, Øyvind; Becker, Thomas S.; Lenhard, Boris

    2010-01-01

    Using a comparative genomics approach to reconstruct the fate of genomic regulatory blocks (GRBs) and identify exonic remnants that have survived the disappearance of their host genes after whole-genome duplication (WGD) in teleosts, we discover a set of 38 candidate cis-regulatory coding exons (RCEs) with predicted target genes. These elements demonstrate evolutionary separation of overlapping protein-coding and regulatory information after WGD in teleosts. We present evidence that the corresponding mammalian exons are still under both coding and non-coding selection pressure, are more conserved than other protein coding exons in the host gene and several control sets, and share key characteristics with highly conserved non-coding elements in the same regions. Their dual function is corroborated by existing experimental data. Additionally, we show examples of human exon remnants stemming from the vertebrate 2R WGD. Our findings suggest that long-range cis-regulatory inputs for developmental genes are not limited to non-coding regions, but can also overlap the coding sequence of unrelated genes. Thus, exonic regulatory elements in GRBs might be functionally equivalent to those in non-coding regions, calling for a re-evaluation of the sequence space in which to look for long-range regulatory elements and experimentally test their activity. PMID:19969543

  2. On the Concept of Cis-regulatory Information: From Sequence Motifs to Logic Functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tarpine, Ryan; Istrail, Sorin

    The regulatory genome is about the “system level organization of the core genomic regulatory apparatus, and how this is the locus of causality underlying the twin phenomena of animal development and animal evolution” (E.H. Davidson. The Regulatory Genome: Gene Regulatory Networks in Development and Evolution, Academic Press, 2006). Information processing in the regulatory genome is done through regulatory states, defined as sets of transcription factors (sequence-specific DNA binding proteins which determine gene expression) that are expressed and active at the same time. The core information processing machinery consists of modular DNA sequence elements, called cis-modules, that interact with transcription factors. The cis-modules “read” the information contained in the regulatory state of the cell through transcription factor binding, “process” it, and directly or indirectly communicate with the basal transcription apparatus to determine gene expression. This endowment of each gene with the information-receiving capacity through their cis-regulatory modules is essential for the response to every possible regulatory state to which it might be exposed during all phases of the life cycle and in all cell types. We present here a set of challenges addressed by our CYRENE research project aimed at studying the cis-regulatory code of the regulatory genome. The CYRENE Project is devoted to (1) the construction of a database, the cis-Lexicon, containing comprehensive information across species about experimentally validated cis-regulatory modules; and (2) the software development of a next-generation genome browser, the cis-Browser, specialized for the regulatory genome. The presentation is anchored on three main computational challenges: the Gene Naming Problem, the Consensus Sequence Bottleneck Problem, and the Logic Function Inference Problem.

  3. Distance and Helical Phase Dependence of Synergistic Transcription Activation in cis-Regulatory Module

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Qilai; Gong, Chenguang; Li, Jiahuang; Zhuo, Zhu; Chen, Yuan; Wang, Jin; Hua, Zi-Chun

    2012-01-01

    Deciphering of the spatial and stereospecific constraints on synergistic transcription activation mediated between activators bound to cis-regulatory elements is important for understanding gene regulation and remains largely unknown. It has been commonly believed that two activators will activate transcription most effectively when they are bound on the same face of DNA double helix and within a boundary distance from the transcription initiation complex attached to the TATA box. In this work, we studied the spatial and stereospecific constraints on activation by multiple copies of bound model activators using a series of engineered relative distances and stereospecific orientations. We observed that multiple copies of the activators GAL4-VP16 and ZEBRA bound to engineered promoters activated transcription more effectively when bound on opposite faces of the DNA double helix. This phenomenon was not affected by the spatial relationship between the proximal activator and initiation complex. To explain these results, we proposed the novel concentration field model, which posits the effective concentration of bound activators, and therefore the transcription activation potential, is affected by their stereospecific positioning. These results could be used to understand synergistic transcription activation anew and to aid the development of predictive models for the identification of cis-regulatory elements. PMID:22299056

  4. Conservation and Evolution of Cis-Regulatory Systems in Ascomycete Fungi

    PubMed Central

    2004-01-01

    Relatively little is known about the mechanisms through which gene expression regulation evolves. To investigate this, we systematically explored the conservation of regulatory networks in fungi by examining the cis-regulatory elements that govern the expression of coregulated genes. We first identified groups of coregulated Saccharomyces cerevisiae genes enriched for genes with known upstream or downstream cis-regulatory sequences. Reasoning that many of these gene groups are coregulated in related species as well, we performed similar analyses on orthologs of coregulated S. cerevisiae genes in 13 other ascomycete species. We find that many species-specific gene groups are enriched for the same flanking regulatory sequences as those found in the orthologous gene groups from S. cerevisiae, indicating that those regulatory systems have been conserved in multiple ascomycete species. In addition to these clear cases of regulatory conservation, we find examples of cis-element evolution that suggest multiple modes of regulatory diversification, including alterations in transcription factor-binding specificity, incorporation of new gene targets into an existing regulatory system, and cooption of regulatory systems to control a different set of genes. We investigated one example in greater detail by measuring the in vitro activity of the S. cerevisiae transcription factor Rpn4p and its orthologs from Candida albicans and Neurospora crassa. Our results suggest that the DNA binding specificity of these proteins has coevolved with the sequences found upstream of the Rpn4p target genes and suggest that Rpn4p has a different function in N. crassa. PMID:15534694

  5. Conservation and evolution of cis-regulatory systems in ascomycete fungi

    SciTech Connect

    Gasch, Audrey P.; Moses, Alan M.; Chiang, Derek Y.; Fraser, Hunter B.; Berardini, Mark; Eisen, Michael B.

    2004-03-15

    Relatively little is known about the mechanisms through which gene expression regulation evolves. To investigate this, we systematically explored the conservation of regulatory networks in fungi by examining the cis-regulatory elements that govern the expression of coregulated genes. We first identified groups of coregulated Saccharomyces cerevisiae genes enriched for genes with known upstream or downstream cis-regulatory sequences. Reasoning that many of these gene groups are coregulated in related species as well, we performed similar analyses on orthologs of coregulated S. cerevisiae genes in 13 other ascomycete species. We find that many species-specific gene groups are enriched for the same flanking regulatory sequences as those found in the orthologous gene groups from S. cerevisiae, indicating that those regulatory systems have been conserved in multiple ascomycete species. In addition to these clear cases of regulatory conservation, we find examples of cis-element evolution that suggest multiple modes of regulatory diversification, including alterations in transcription factor-binding specificity, incorporation of new gene targets into an existing regulatory system, and cooption of regulatory systems to control a different set of genes. We investigated one example in greater detail by measuring the in vitro activity of the S. cerevisiae transcription factor Rpn4p and its orthologs from Candida albicans and Neurospora crassa. Our results suggest that the DNA binding specificity of these proteins has coevolved with the sequences found upstream of the Rpn4p target genes and suggest that Rpn4p has a different function in N. crassa.

  6. The evolution of cichlid fish egg-spots is linked with a cis-regulatory change

    PubMed Central

    Santos, M. Emília; Braasch, Ingo; Boileau, Nicolas; Meyer, Britta S.; Sauteur, Loïc; Böhne, Astrid; Belting, Heinz-Georg; Affolter, Markus; Salzburger, Walter

    2014-01-01

    The origin of novel phenotypic characters is a key component in organismal diversification; yet, the mechanisms underlying the emergence of such evolutionary novelties are largely unknown. Here we examine the origin of egg-spots, an evolutionary innovation of the most species-rich group of cichlids, the haplochromines, where these conspicuous male fin colour markings are involved in mating. Applying a combination of RNAseq, comparative genomics and functional experiments, we identify two novel pigmentation genes, fhl2a and fhl2b, and show that especially the more rapidly evolving b-paralog is associated with egg-spot formation. We further find that egg-spot bearing haplochromines, but not other cichlids, feature a transposable element in the cis-regulatory region of fhl2b. Using transgenic zebrafish, we finally demonstrate that this region shows specific enhancer activities in iridophores, a type of pigment cells found in egg-spots, suggesting that a cis-regulatory change is causally linked to the gain of expression in egg-spot bearing haplochromines. PMID:25296686

  7. Evolutionarily Assembled cis-Regulatory Module at a Human Ciliopathy Locus

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Jeong Ho; Silhavy, Jennifer L.; Lee, Ji Eun; Al-Gazali, Lihadh; Thomas, Sophie; Davis, Erica E.; Bielas, Stephanie L.; Hill, Kiley J.; Iannicelli, Miriam; Brancati, Francesco; Gabriel, Stacey B.; Russ, Carsten; Logan, Clare V.; Sharif, Saghira Malik; Bennett, Christopher P.; Abe, Masumi; Hildebrandt, Friedhelm; Diplas, Bill H.; Attié-Bitach, Tania; Katsanis, Nicholas; Rajab, Anna; Koul, Roshan; Sztriha, Laszlo; Waters, Elizabeth R.; Ferro-Novick, Susan; Woods, C. Geoffrey; Johnson, Colin A.; Valente, Enza Maria; Zaki, Maha S.; Gleeson, Joseph G.

    2013-01-01

    Neighboring genes are often coordinately expressed within cis-regulatory modules, but evidence that nonparalogous genes share functions in mammals is lacking. Here, we report that mutation of either TMEM138 or TMEM216 causes a phenotypically indistinguishable human ciliopathy, Joubert syndrome. Despite a lack of sequence homology, the genes are aligned in a head-to-tail configuration and joined by chromosomal rearrangement at the amphibian-to-reptile evolutionary transition. Expression of the two genes is mediated by a conserved regulatory element in the noncoding intergenic region. Coordinated expression is important for their interdependent cellular role in vesicular transport to primary cilia. Hence, during vertebrate evolution of genes involved in ciliogenesis, nonparalogous genes were arranged to a functional gene cluster with shared regulatory elements. PMID:22282472

  8. A primer on regression methods for decoding cis-regulatory logic

    SciTech Connect

    Das, Debopriya; Pellegrini, Matteo; Gray, Joe W.

    2009-03-03

    The rapidly emerging field of systems biology is helping us to understand the molecular determinants of phenotype on a genomic scale [1]. Cis-regulatory elements are major sequence-based determinants of biological processes in cells and tissues [2]. For instance, during transcriptional regulation, transcription factors (TFs) bind to very specific regions on the promoter DNA [2,3] and recruit the basal transcriptional machinery, which ultimately initiates mRNA transcription (Figure 1A). Learning cis-Regulatory Elements from Omics Data A vast amount of work over the past decade has shown that omics data can be used to learn cis-regulatory logic on a genome-wide scale [4-6]--in particular, by integrating sequence data with mRNA expression profiles. The most popular approach has been to identify over-represented motifs in promoters of genes that are coexpressed [4,7,8]. Though widely used, such an approach can be limiting for a variety of reasons. First, the combinatorial nature of gene regulation is difficult to explicitly model in this framework. Moreover, in many applications of this approach, expression data from multiple conditions are necessary to obtain reliable predictions. This can potentially limit the use of this method to only large data sets [9]. Although these methods can be adapted to analyze mRNA expression data from a pair of biological conditions, such comparisons are often confounded by the fact that primary and secondary response genes are clustered together--whereas only the primary response genes are expected to contain the functional motifs [10]. A set of approaches based on regression has been developed to overcome the above limitations [11-32]. These approaches have their foundations in certain biophysical aspects of gene regulation [26,33-35]. That is, the models are motivated by the expected transcriptional response of genes due to the binding of TFs to their promoters. While such methods have gathered popularity in the computational domain

  9. Cis-regulatory architecture of a brain signaling center predates the origin of chordates.

    PubMed

    Yao, Yao; Minor, Paul J; Zhao, Ying-Tao; Jeong, Yongsu; Pani, Ariel M; King, Anna N; Symmons, Orsolya; Gan, Lin; Cardoso, Wellington V; Spitz, François; Lowe, Christopher J; Epstein, Douglas J

    2016-05-01

    Genomic approaches have predicted hundreds of thousands of tissue-specific cis-regulatory sequences, but the determinants critical to their function and evolutionary history are mostly unknown. Here we systematically decode a set of brain enhancers active in the zona limitans intrathalamica (zli), a signaling center essential for vertebrate forebrain development via the secreted morphogen Sonic hedgehog (Shh). We apply a de novo motif analysis tool to identify six position-independent sequence motifs together with their cognate transcription factors that are essential for zli enhancer activity and Shh expression in the mouse embryo. Using knowledge of this regulatory lexicon, we discover new Shh zli enhancers in mice and a functionally equivalent element in hemichordates, indicating an ancient origin of the Shh zli regulatory network that predates the chordate phylum. These findings support a strategy for delineating functionally conserved enhancers in the absence of overt sequence homologies and over extensive evolutionary distances. PMID:27064252

  10. Dissecting the Genetic Basis of a Complex cis-Regulatory Adaptation

    PubMed Central

    Artieri, Carlo G.; Zhang, Mian; Zhou, Yiqi; Palmer, Michael E.; Fraser, Hunter B.

    2015-01-01

    Although single genes underlying several evolutionary adaptations have been identified, the genetic basis of complex, polygenic adaptations has been far more challenging to pinpoint. Here we report that the budding yeast Saccharomyces paradoxus has recently evolved resistance to citrinin, a naturally occurring mycotoxin. Applying a genome-wide test for selection on cis-regulation, we identified five genes involved in the citrinin response that are constitutively up-regulated in S. paradoxus. Four of these genes are necessary for resistance, and are also sufficient to increase the resistance of a sensitive strain when over-expressed. Moreover, cis-regulatory divergence in the promoters of these genes contributes to resistance, while exacting a cost in the absence of citrinin. Our results demonstrate how the subtle effects of individual regulatory elements can be combined, via natural selection, into a complex adaptation. Our approach can be applied to dissect the genetic basis of polygenic adaptations in a wide range of species. PMID:26713447

  11. Discovering cis-regulatory RNAs in Shewanella genomes by Support Vector Machines.

    PubMed

    Xu, Xing; Ji, Yongmei; Stormo, Gary D

    2009-04-01

    An increasing number of cis-regulatory RNA elements have been found to regulate gene expression post-transcriptionally in various biological processes in bacterial systems. Effective computational tools for large-scale identification of novel regulatory RNAs are strongly desired to facilitate our exploration of gene regulation mechanisms and regulatory networks. We present a new computational program named RSSVM (RNA Sampler+Support Vector Machine), which employs Support Vector Machines (SVMs) for efficient identification of functional RNA motifs from random RNA secondary structures. RSSVM uses a set of distinctive features to represent the common RNA secondary structure and structural alignment predicted by RNA Sampler, a tool for accurate common RNA secondary structure prediction, and is trained with functional RNAs from a variety of bacterial RNA motif/gene families covering a wide range of sequence identities. When tested on a large number of known and random RNA motifs, RSSVM shows a significantly higher sensitivity than other leading RNA identification programs while maintaining the same false positive rate. RSSVM performs particularly well on sets with low sequence identities. The combination of RNA Sampler and RSSVM provides a new, fast, and efficient pipeline for large-scale discovery of regulatory RNA motifs. We applied RSSVM to multiple Shewanella genomes and identified putative regulatory RNA motifs in the 5' untranslated regions (UTRs) in S. oneidensis, an important bacterial organism with extraordinary respiratory and metal reducing abilities and great potential for bioremediation and alternative energy generation. From 1002 sets of 5'-UTRs of orthologous operons, we identified 166 putative regulatory RNA motifs, including 17 of the 19 known RNA motifs from Rfam, an additional 21 RNA motifs that are supported by literature evidence, 72 RNA motifs overlapping predicted transcription terminators or attenuators, and other candidate regulatory RNA motifs

  12. Detailed map of a cis-regulatory input function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Setty, Y.; Mayo, A. E.; Surette, M. G.; Alon, U.

    2003-06-01

    Most genes are regulated by multiple transcription factors that bind specific sites in DNA regulatory regions. These cis-regulatory regions perform a computation: the rate of transcription is a function of the active concentrations of each of the input transcription factors. Here, we used accurate gene expression measurements from living cell cultures, bearing GFP reporters, to map in detail the input function of the classic lacZYA operon of Escherichia coli, as a function of about a hundred combinations of its two inducers, cAMP and isopropyl -D-thiogalactoside (IPTG). We found an unexpectedly intricate function with four plateau levels and four thresholds. This result compares well with a mathematical model of the binding of the regulatory proteins cAMP receptor protein (CRP) and LacI to the lac regulatory region. The model is also used to demonstrate that with few mutations, the same region could encode much purer AND-like or even OR-like functions. This possibility means that the wild-type region is selected to perform an elaborate computation in setting the transcription rate. The present approach can be generally used to map the input functions of other genes.

  13. Experimental validation of predicted mammalian erythroid cis-regulatory modules

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Hao; Zhang, Ying; Cheng, Yong; Zhou, Yuepin; King, David C.; Taylor, James; Chiaromonte, Francesca; Kasturi, Jyotsna; Petrykowska, Hanna; Gibb, Brian; Dorman, Christine; Miller, Webb; Dore, Louis C.; Welch, John; Weiss, Mitchell J.; Hardison, Ross C.

    2006-01-01

    Multiple alignments of genome sequences are helpful guides to functional analysis, but predicting cis-regulatory modules (CRMs) accurately from such alignments remains an elusive goal. We predict CRMs for mammalian genes expressed in red blood cells by combining two properties gleaned from aligned, noncoding genome sequences: a positive regulatory potential (RP) score, which detects similarity to patterns in alignments distinctive for regulatory regions, and conservation of a binding site motif for the essential erythroid transcription factor GATA-1. Within eight target loci, we tested 75 noncoding segments by reporter gene assays in transiently transfected human K562 cells and/or after site-directed integration into murine erythroleukemia cells. Segments with a high RP score and a conserved exact match to the binding site consensus are validated at a good rate (50%–100%, with rates increasing at higher RP), whereas segments with lower RP scores or nonconsensus binding motifs tend to be inactive. Active DNA segments were shown to be occupied by GATA-1 protein by chromatin immunoprecipitation, whereas sites predicted to be inactive were not occupied. We verify four previously known erythroid CRMs and identify 28 novel ones. Thus, high RP in combination with another feature of a CRM, such as a conserved transcription factor binding site, is a good predictor of functional CRMs. Genome-wide predictions based on RP and a large set of well-defined transcription factor binding sites are available through servers at http://www.bx.psu.edu/. PMID:17038566

  14. Massively parallel cis-regulatory analysis in the mammalian central nervous system

    PubMed Central

    Shen, Susan Q.; Myers, Connie A.; Hughes, Andrew E.O.; Byrne, Leah C.; Flannery, John G.; Corbo, Joseph C.

    2016-01-01

    Cis-regulatory elements (CREs, e.g., promoters and enhancers) regulate gene expression, and variants within CREs can modulate disease risk. Next-generation sequencing has enabled the rapid generation of genomic data that predict the locations of CREs, but a bottleneck lies in functionally interpreting these data. To address this issue, massively parallel reporter assays (MPRAs) have emerged, in which barcoded reporter libraries are introduced into cells, and the resulting barcoded transcripts are quantified by next-generation sequencing. Thus far, MPRAs have been largely restricted to assaying short CREs in a limited repertoire of cultured cell types. Here, we present two advances that extend the biological relevance and applicability of MPRAs. First, we adapt exome capture technology to instead capture candidate CREs, thereby tiling across the targeted regions and markedly increasing the length of CREs that can be readily assayed. Second, we package the library into adeno-associated virus (AAV), thereby allowing delivery to target organs in vivo. As a proof of concept, we introduce a capture library of about 46,000 constructs, corresponding to roughly 3500 DNase I hypersensitive (DHS) sites, into the mouse retina by ex vivo plasmid electroporation and into the mouse cerebral cortex by in vivo AAV injection. We demonstrate tissue-specific cis-regulatory activity of DHSs and provide examples of high-resolution truncation mutation analysis for multiplex parsing of CREs. Our approach should enable massively parallel functional analysis of a wide range of CREs in any organ or species that can be infected by AAV, such as nonhuman primates and human stem cell–derived organoids. PMID:26576614

  15. Brachyury, Foxa2 and the cis-Regulatory Origins of the Notochord.

    PubMed

    José-Edwards, Diana S; Oda-Ishii, Izumi; Kugler, Jamie E; Passamaneck, Yale J; Katikala, Lavanya; Nibu, Yutaka; Di Gregorio, Anna

    2015-12-01

    A main challenge of modern biology is to understand how specific constellations of genes are activated to differentiate cells and give rise to distinct tissues. This study focuses on elucidating how gene expression is initiated in the notochord, an axial structure that provides support and patterning signals to embryos of humans and all other chordates. Although numerous notochord genes have been identified, the regulatory DNAs that orchestrate development and propel evolution of this structure by eliciting notochord gene expression remain mostly uncharted, and the information on their configuration and recurrence is still quite fragmentary. Here we used the simple chordate Ciona for a systematic analysis of notochord cis-regulatory modules (CRMs), and investigated their composition, architectural constraints, predictive ability and evolutionary conservation. We found that most Ciona notochord CRMs relied upon variable combinations of binding sites for the transcription factors Brachyury and/or Foxa2, which can act either synergistically or independently from one another. Notably, one of these CRMs contains a Brachyury binding site juxtaposed to an (AC) microsatellite, an unusual arrangement also found in Brachyury-bound regulatory regions in mouse. In contrast, different subsets of CRMs relied upon binding sites for transcription factors of widely diverse families. Surprisingly, we found that neither intra-genomic nor interspecific conservation of binding sites were reliably predictive hallmarks of notochord CRMs. We propose that rather than obeying a rigid sequence-based cis-regulatory code, most notochord CRMs are rather unique. Yet, this study uncovered essential elements recurrently used by divergent chordates as basic building blocks for notochord CRMs. PMID:26684323

  16. Overview Article: Identifying transcriptional cis-regulatory modules in animal genomes

    PubMed Central

    Suryamohan, Kushal; Halfon, Marc S.

    2014-01-01

    Gene expression is regulated through the activity of transcription factors and chromatin modifying proteins acting on specific DNA sequences, referred to as cis-regulatory elements. These include promoters, located at the transcription initiation sites of genes, and a variety of distal cis-regulatory modules (CRMs), the most common of which are transcriptional enhancers. Because regulated gene expression is fundamental to cell differentiation and acquisition of new cell fates, identifying, characterizing, and understanding the mechanisms of action of CRMs is critical for understanding development. CRM discovery has historically been challenging, as CRMs can be located far from the genes they regulate, have few readily-identifiable sequence characteristics, and for many years were not amenable to high-throughput discovery methods. However, the recent availability of complete genome sequences and the development of next-generation sequencing methods has led to an explosion of both computational and empirical methods for CRM discovery in model and non-model organisms alike. Experimentally, CRMs can be identified through chromatin immunoprecipitation directed against transcription factors or histone post-translational modifications, identification of nucleosome-depleted “open” chromatin regions, or sequencing-based high-throughput functional screening. Computational methods include comparative genomics, clustering of known or predicted transcription factor binding sites, and supervised machine-learning approaches trained on known CRMs. All of these methods have proven effective for CRM discovery, but each has its own considerations and limitations, and each is subject to a greater or lesser number of false-positive identifications. Experimental confirmation of predictions is essential, although shortcomings in current methods suggest that additional means of validation need to be developed. PMID:25704908

  17. Brachyury, Foxa2 and the cis-Regulatory Origins of the Notochord

    PubMed Central

    José-Edwards, Diana S.; Oda-Ishii, Izumi; Kugler, Jamie E.; Passamaneck, Yale J.; Katikala, Lavanya; Nibu, Yutaka; Di Gregorio, Anna

    2015-01-01

    A main challenge of modern biology is to understand how specific constellations of genes are activated to differentiate cells and give rise to distinct tissues. This study focuses on elucidating how gene expression is initiated in the notochord, an axial structure that provides support and patterning signals to embryos of humans and all other chordates. Although numerous notochord genes have been identified, the regulatory DNAs that orchestrate development and propel evolution of this structure by eliciting notochord gene expression remain mostly uncharted, and the information on their configuration and recurrence is still quite fragmentary. Here we used the simple chordate Ciona for a systematic analysis of notochord cis-regulatory modules (CRMs), and investigated their composition, architectural constraints, predictive ability and evolutionary conservation. We found that most Ciona notochord CRMs relied upon variable combinations of binding sites for the transcription factors Brachyury and/or Foxa2, which can act either synergistically or independently from one another. Notably, one of these CRMs contains a Brachyury binding site juxtaposed to an (AC) microsatellite, an unusual arrangement also found in Brachyury-bound regulatory regions in mouse. In contrast, different subsets of CRMs relied upon binding sites for transcription factors of widely diverse families. Surprisingly, we found that neither intra-genomic nor interspecific conservation of binding sites were reliably predictive hallmarks of notochord CRMs. We propose that rather than obeying a rigid sequence-based cis-regulatory code, most notochord CRMs are rather unique. Yet, this study uncovered essential elements recurrently used by divergent chordates as basic building blocks for notochord CRMs. PMID:26684323

  18. cis regulatory requirements for hypodermal cell-specific expression of the Caenorhabditis elegans cuticle collagen gene dpy-7.

    PubMed Central

    Gilleard, J S; Barry, J D; Johnstone, I L

    1997-01-01

    The Caenorhabditis elegans cuticle collagens are encoded by a multigene family of between 50 and 100 members and are the major component of the nematode cuticular exoskeleton. They are synthesized in the hypodermis prior to secretion and incorporation into the cuticle and exhibit complex patterns of spatial and temporal expression. We have investigated the cis regulatory requirements for tissue- and stage-specific expression of the cuticle collagen gene dpy-7 and have identified a compact regulatory element which is sufficient to specify hypodermal cell reporter gene expression. This element appears to be a true tissue-specific promoter element, since it encompasses the dpy-7 transcription initiation sites and functions in an orientation-dependent manner. We have also shown, by interspecies transformation experiments, that the dpy-7 cis regulatory elements are functionally conserved between C. elegans and C. briggsae, and comparative sequence analysis supports the importance of the regulatory sequence that we have identified by reporter gene analysis. All of our data suggest that the spatial expression of the dpy-7 cuticle collagen gene is established essentially by a small tissue-specific promoter element and does not require upstream activator or repressor elements. In addition, we have found the DPY-7 polypeptide is very highly conserved between the two species and that the C. briggsae polypeptide can function appropriately within the C. elegans cuticle. This finding suggests a remarkably high level of conservation of individual cuticle components, and their interactions, between these two nematode species. PMID:9121480

  19. ChIP-Seq-Annotated Heliconius erato Genome Highlights Patterns of cis-Regulatory Evolution in Lepidoptera.

    PubMed

    Lewis, James J; van der Burg, Karin R L; Mazo-Vargas, Anyi; Reed, Robert D

    2016-09-13

    Uncovering phylogenetic patterns of cis-regulatory evolution remains a fundamental goal for evolutionary and developmental biology. Here, we characterize the evolution of regulatory loci in butterflies and moths using chromatin immunoprecipitation sequencing (ChIP-seq) annotation of regulatory elements across three stages of head development. In the process we provide a high-quality, functionally annotated genome assembly for the butterfly, Heliconius erato. Comparing cis-regulatory element conservation across six lepidopteran genomes, we find that regulatory sequences evolve at a pace similar to that of protein-coding regions. We also observe that elements active at multiple developmental stages are markedly more conserved than elements with stage-specific activity. Surprisingly, we also find that stage-specific proximal and distal regulatory elements evolve at nearly identical rates. Our study provides a benchmark for genome-wide patterns of regulatory element evolution in insects, and it shows that developmental timing of activity strongly predicts patterns of regulatory sequence evolution. PMID:27626657

  20. The Hematopoietic Stem and Progenitor Cell Cistrome: GATA Factor-Dependent cis-Regulatory Mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Hewitt, K J; Johnson, K D; Gao, X; Keles, S; Bresnick, E H

    2016-01-01

    Transcriptional regulators mediate the genesis and function of the hematopoietic system by binding complex ensembles of cis-regulatory elements to establish genetic networks. While thousands to millions of any given cis-element resides in a genome, how transcriptional regulators select these sites and how site attributes dictate functional output is not well understood. An instructive system to address this problem involves the GATA family of transcription factors that control vital developmental and physiological processes and are linked to multiple human pathologies. Although GATA factors bind DNA motifs harboring the sequence GATA, only a very small subset of these abundant motifs are occupied in genomes. Mechanistic studies revealed a unique configuration of a GATA factor-regulated cis-element consisting of an E-box and a downstream GATA motif separated by a short DNA spacer. GATA-1- or GATA-2-containing multiprotein complexes at these composite elements control transcription of genes critical for hematopoietic stem cell emergence in the mammalian embryo, hematopoietic progenitor cell regulation, and erythroid cell maturation. Other constituents of the complex include the basic helix-loop-loop transcription factor Scl/TAL1, its heterodimeric partner E2A, and the Lim domain proteins LMO2 and LDB1. This chapter reviews the structure/function of E-box-GATA composite cis-elements, which collectively constitute an important sector of the hematopoietic stem and progenitor cell cistrome. PMID:27137654

  1. Computational discovery of cis-regulatory modules in Drosophila without prior knowledge of motifs

    PubMed Central

    Ivan, Andra; Halfon, Marc S; Sinha, Saurabh

    2008-01-01

    We consider the problem of predicting cis-regulatory modules without knowledge of motifs. We formulate this problem in a pragmatic setting, and create over 30 new data sets, using Drosophila modules, to use as a 'benchmark'. We propose two new methods for the problem, and evaluate these, as well as two existing methods, on our benchmark. We find that the challenge of predicting cis-regulatory modules ab initio, without any input of relevant motifs, is a realizable goal. PMID:18226245

  2. Subfunctionalization of Duplicated Zebrafish pax6 Genes by cis-Regulatory Divergence

    PubMed Central

    Gautier, Philippe; Dahm, Ralf; Schonthaler, Helia B; Damante, Giuseppe; Seawright, Anne; Hever, Ann M; Yeyati, Patricia L; van Heyningen, Veronica; Coutinho, Pedro

    2008-01-01

    Gene duplication is a major driver of evolutionary divergence. In most vertebrates a single PAX6 gene encodes a transcription factor required for eye, brain, olfactory system, and pancreas development. In zebrafish, following a postulated whole-genome duplication event in an ancestral teleost, duplicates pax6a and pax6b jointly fulfill these roles. Mapping of the homozygously viable eye mutant sunrise identified a homeodomain missense change in pax6b, leading to loss of target binding. The mild phenotype emphasizes role-sharing between the co-orthologues. Meticulous mapping of isolated BACs identified perturbed synteny relationships around the duplicates. This highlights the functional conservation of pax6 downstream (3′) control sequences, which in most vertebrates reside within the introns of a ubiquitously expressed neighbour gene, ELP4, whose pax6a-linked exons have been lost in zebrafish. Reporter transgenic studies in both mouse and zebrafish, combined with analysis of vertebrate sequence conservation, reveal loss and retention of specific cis-regulatory elements, correlating strongly with the diverged expression of co-orthologues, and providing clear evidence for evolution by subfunctionalization. PMID:18282108

  3. Analysis of opo cis-regulatory landscape uncovers Vsx2 requirement in early eye morphogenesis.

    PubMed

    Gago-Rodrigues, Ines; Fernández-Miñán, Ana; Letelier, Joaquin; Naranjo, Silvia; Tena, Juan J; Gómez-Skarmeta, José L; Martinez-Morales, Juan R

    2015-01-01

    The self-organized morphogenesis of the vertebrate optic cup entails coupling the activation of the retinal gene regulatory network to the constriction-driven infolding of the retinal epithelium. Yet the genetic mechanisms underlying this coordination remain largely unexplored. Through phylogenetic footprinting and transgenesis in zebrafish, here we examine the cis-regulatory landscape of opo, an endocytosis regulator essential for eye morphogenesis. Among the different conserved enhancers identified, we isolate a single retina-specific element (H6_10137) and show that its activity depends on binding sites for the retinal determinant Vsx2. Gain- and loss-of-function experiments and ChIP analyses reveal that Vsx2 regulates opo expression through direct binding to this retinal enhancer. Furthermore, we show that vsx2 knockdown impairs the primary optic cup folding. These data support a model by which vsx2, operating through the effector gene opo, acts as a central transcriptional node that coordinates neural retina patterning and optic cup invagination in zebrafish. PMID:25963169

  4. A Computational Pipeline for High- Throughput Discovery of cis-Regulatory Noncoding RNA in Prokaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Yao, Zizhen; Barrick, Jeffrey; Weinberg, Zasha; Neph, Shane; Breaker, Ronald; Tompa, Martin; Ruzzo, Walter L

    2007-01-01

    Noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs) are important functional RNAs that do not code for proteins. We present a highly efficient computational pipeline for discovering cis-regulatory ncRNA motifs de novo. The pipeline differs from previous methods in that it is structure-oriented, does not require a multiple-sequence alignment as input, and is capable of detecting RNA motifs with low sequence conservation. We also integrate RNA motif prediction with RNA homolog search, which improves the quality of the RNA motifs significantly. Here, we report the results of applying this pipeline to Firmicute bacteria. Our top-ranking motifs include most known Firmicute elements found in the RNA family database (Rfam). Comparing our motif models with Rfam's hand-curated motif models, we achieve high accuracy in both membership prediction and base-pair–level secondary structure prediction (at least 75% average sensitivity and specificity on both tasks). Of the ncRNA candidates not in Rfam, we find compelling evidence that some of them are functional, and analyze several potential ribosomal protein leaders in depth. PMID:17616982

  5. Subfunctionalization of duplicated zebrafish pax6 genes by cis-regulatory divergence.

    PubMed

    Kleinjan, Dirk A; Bancewicz, Ruth M; Gautier, Philippe; Dahm, Ralf; Schonthaler, Helia B; Damante, Giuseppe; Seawright, Anne; Hever, Ann M; Yeyati, Patricia L; van Heyningen, Veronica; Coutinho, Pedro

    2008-02-01

    Gene duplication is a major driver of evolutionary divergence. In most vertebrates a single PAX6 gene encodes a transcription factor required for eye, brain, olfactory system, and pancreas development. In zebrafish, following a postulated whole-genome duplication event in an ancestral teleost, duplicates pax6a and pax6b jointly fulfill these roles. Mapping of the homozygously viable eye mutant sunrise identified a homeodomain missense change in pax6b, leading to loss of target binding. The mild phenotype emphasizes role-sharing between the co-orthologues. Meticulous mapping of isolated BACs identified perturbed synteny relationships around the duplicates. This highlights the functional conservation of pax6 downstream (3') control sequences, which in most vertebrates reside within the introns of a ubiquitously expressed neighbour gene, ELP4, whose pax6a-linked exons have been lost in zebrafish. Reporter transgenic studies in both mouse and zebrafish, combined with analysis of vertebrate sequence conservation, reveal loss and retention of specific cis-regulatory elements, correlating strongly with the diverged expression of co-orthologues, and providing clear evidence for evolution by subfunctionalization. PMID:18282108

  6. Developmental cis-regulatory analysis of the cyclin D gene in the sea urchin Strongylocentrotus purpuratus

    PubMed Central

    McCarty, Christopher M.

    2013-01-01

    Cyclin D genes regulate the cell cycle, growth and differentiation in response to intercellular signaling. While the promoters of vertebrate cyclin D genes have been analyzed, the cis-regulatory sequences across an entire cyclin D locus have not. Doing so would increase understanding of how cyclin D genes respond to the regulatory states established by developmental gene regulatory networks, linking cell cycle and growth control to the ontogenetic program. Therefore, we conducted a cis-regulatory analysis on the cyclin D gene, SpcycD, of the sea urchin, Strongylocentrotus purpuratus, during embryogenesis, identifying upstream and intronic sequences, located within six defined regions bearing one or more cis-regulatory modules each. PMID:24090975

  7. cis-Regulatory Mutations Are a Genetic Cause of Human Limb Malformations

    PubMed Central

    VanderMeer, Julia E.; Ahituv, Nadav

    2011-01-01

    The underlying mutations that cause human limb malformations are often difficult to determine, particularly for limb malformations that occur as isolated traits. Evidence from a variety of studies shows that cis-regulatory mutations, specifically in enhancers, can lead to some of these isolated limb malformations. Here, we provide a review of human limb malformations that have been shown to be caused by enhancer mutations and propose that cis-regulatory mutations will continue to be identified as the cause of additional human malformations as our understanding of regulatory sequences improves. PMID:21509892

  8. Intrafamilial variability of ZRS-associated syndrome: characterization of a mosaic ZRS mutation by pyrosequencing.

    PubMed

    Vanlerberghe, C; Faivre, L; Petit, F; Fruchart, O; Jourdain, A-S; Clavier, F; Gay, S; Manouvrier-Hanu, S; Escande, F

    2015-11-01

    During limb development, the spatio-temporal expression of sonic hedgehog (SHH) is driven by the Zone of polarizing activity Regulatory Sequence (ZRS), located 1 megabase upstream from SHH. Gain-of-function mutations of this enhancer, which cause ectopic expression of SHH, are known to be responsible for congenital limb malformations with variable expressivity, ranging from preaxial polydactyly or triphalangeal thumbs to polysyndactyly, which may also be associated with mesomelic deficiency. In this report, we describe a patient affected with mirror-image polydactyly of the four extremities and bilateral tibial deficiency. The proband's father had isolated preaxial polydactyly type II (PPD2). Using Sanger sequencing, a ZRS point mutation (NC_000007.14, g.156584153A>G, UCSC, Build hg.19) was only identified in the patient. However, pyrosequencing analysis enabled the detection of a 10% somatic mosaic in the blood and saliva from the father. To our knowledge, this is the first description of a ZRS mosaic mutation. This report highlights the complexity of genotype-phenotype correlation in ZRS-associated syndromes and the importance of detecting somatic mosaicism for accurate genetic counselling. PMID:25382487

  9. Use of a Drosophila Genome-Wide Conserved Sequence Database to Identify Functionally Related cis-Regulatory Enhancers

    PubMed Central

    Brody, Thomas; Yavatkar, Amarendra S; Kuzin, Alexander; Kundu, Mukta; Tyson, Leonard J; Ross, Jermaine; Lin, Tzu-Yang; Lee, Chi-Hon; Awasaki, Takeshi; Lee, Tzumin; Odenwald, Ward F

    2012-01-01

    Background: Phylogenetic footprinting has revealed that cis-regulatory enhancers consist of conserved DNA sequence clusters (CSCs). Currently, there is no systematic approach for enhancer discovery and analysis that takes full-advantage of the sequence information within enhancer CSCs. Results: We have generated a Drosophila genome-wide database of conserved DNA consisting of >100,000 CSCs derived from EvoPrints spanning over 90% of the genome. cis-Decoder database search and alignment algorithms enable the discovery of functionally related enhancers. The program first identifies conserved repeat elements within an input enhancer and then searches the database for CSCs that score highly against the input CSC. Scoring is based on shared repeats as well as uniquely shared matches, and includes measures of the balance of shared elements, a diagnostic that has proven to be useful in predicting cis-regulatory function. To demonstrate the utility of these tools, a temporally-restricted CNS neuroblast enhancer was used to identify other functionally related enhancers and analyze their structural organization. Conclusions: cis-Decoder reveals that co-regulating enhancers consist of combinations of overlapping shared sequence elements, providing insights into the mode of integration of multiple regulating transcription factors. The database and accompanying algorithms should prove useful in the discovery and analysis of enhancers involved in any developmental process. Developmental Dynamics 241:169–189, 2012. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Key findings A genome-wide catalog of Drosophila conserved DNA sequence clusters. cis-Decoder discovers functionally related enhancers. Functionally related enhancers share balanced sequence element copy numbers. Many enhancers function during multiple phases of development. PMID:22174086

  10. Cis-regulatory mechanisms governing stem and progenitor cell transitions

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Kirby D.; Kong, Guangyao; Gao, Xin; Chang, Yuan-I; Hewitt, Kyle J.; Sanalkumar, Rajendran; Prathibha, Rajalekshmi; Ranheim, Erik A.; Dewey, Colin N.; Zhang, Jing; Bresnick, Emery H.

    2015-01-01

    Cis-element encyclopedias provide information on phenotypic diversity and disease mechanisms. Although cis-element polymorphisms and mutations are instructive, deciphering function remains challenging. Mutation of an intronic GATA motif (+9.5) in GATA2, encoding a master regulator of hematopoiesis, underlies an immunodeficiency associated with myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) and acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Whereas an inversion relocalizes another GATA2 cis-element (−77) to the proto-oncogene EVI1, inducing EVI1 expression and AML, whether this reflects ectopic or physiological activity is unknown. We describe a mouse strain that decouples −77 function from proto-oncogene deregulation. The −77−/− mice exhibited a novel phenotypic constellation including late embryonic lethality and anemia. The −77 established a vital sector of the myeloid progenitor transcriptome, conferring multipotentiality. Unlike the +9.5−/− embryos, hematopoietic stem cell genesis was unaffected in −77−/− embryos. These results illustrate a paradigm in which cis-elements in a locus differentially control stem and progenitor cell transitions, and therefore the individual cis-element alterations cause unique and overlapping disease phenotypes. PMID:26601269

  11. Conserved cis-regulatory modules in promoters of genes encoding wheat high-molecular-weight glutenin subunits

    PubMed Central

    Ravel, Catherine; Fiquet, Samuel; Boudet, Julie; Dardevet, Mireille; Vincent, Jonathan; Merlino, Marielle; Michard, Robin; Martre, Pierre

    2014-01-01

    The concentration and composition of the gliadin and glutenin seed storage proteins (SSPs) in wheat flour are the most important determinants of its end-use value. In cereals, the synthesis of SSPs is predominantly regulated at the transcriptional level by a complex network involving at least five cis-elements in gene promoters. The high-molecular-weight glutenin subunits (HMW-GS) are encoded by two tightly linked genes located on the long arms of group 1 chromosomes. Here, we sequenced and annotated the HMW-GS gene promoters of 22 electrophoretic wheat alleles to identify putative cis-regulatory motifs. We focused on 24 motifs known to be involved in SSP gene regulation. Most of them were identified in at least one HMW-GS gene promoter sequence. A common regulatory framework was observed in all the HMW-GS gene promoters, as they shared conserved cis-regulatory modules (CCRMs) including all the five motifs known to regulate the transcription of SSP genes. This common regulatory framework comprises a composite box made of the GATA motifs and GCN4-like Motifs (GLMs) and was shown to be functional as the GLMs are able to bind a bZIP transcriptional factor SPA (Storage Protein Activator). In addition to this regulatory framework, each HMW-GS gene promoter had additional motifs organized differently. The promoters of most highly expressed x-type HMW-GS genes contain an additional box predicted to bind R2R3-MYB transcriptional factors. However, the differences in annotation between promoter alleles could not be related to their level of expression. In summary, we identified a common modular organization of HMW-GS gene promoters but the lack of correlation between the cis-motifs of each HMW-GS gene promoter and their level of expression suggests that other cis-elements or other mechanisms regulate HMW-GS gene expression. PMID:25429295

  12. Evolved tooth gain in sticklebacks is associated with a cis-regulatory allele of Bmp6

    PubMed Central

    Cleves, Phillip A.; Ellis, Nicholas A.; Jimenez, Monica T.; Nunez, Stephanie M.; Schluter, Dolph; Kingsley, David M.; Miller, Craig T.

    2014-01-01

    Developmental genetic studies of evolved differences in morphology have led to the hypothesis that cis-regulatory changes often underlie morphological evolution. However, because most of these studies focus on evolved loss of traits, the genetic architecture and possible association with cis-regulatory changes of gain traits are less understood. Here we show that a derived benthic freshwater stickleback population has evolved an approximate twofold gain in ventral pharyngeal tooth number compared with their ancestral marine counterparts. Comparing laboratory-reared developmental time courses of a low-toothed marine population and this high-toothed benthic population reveals that increases in tooth number and tooth plate area and decreases in tooth spacing arise at late juvenile stages. Genome-wide linkage mapping identifies largely separate sets of quantitative trait loci affecting different aspects of dental patterning. One large-effect quantitative trait locus controlling tooth number fine-maps to a genomic region containing an excellent candidate gene, Bone morphogenetic protein 6 (Bmp6). Stickleback Bmp6 is expressed in developing teeth, and no coding changes are found between the high- and low-toothed populations. However, quantitative allele-specific expression assays of Bmp6 in developing teeth in F1 hybrids show that cis-regulatory changes have elevated the relative expression level of the freshwater benthic Bmp6 allele at late, but not early, stages of stickleback development. Collectively, our data support a model where a late-acting cis-regulatory up-regulation of Bmp6 expression underlies a significant increase in tooth number in derived benthic sticklebacks. PMID:25205810

  13. Predominant contribution of cis-regulatory divergence in the evolution of mouse alternative splicing

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Qingsong; Sun, Wei; Ballegeer, Marlies; Libert, Claude; Chen, Wei

    2015-01-01

    Divergence of alternative splicing represents one of the major driving forces to shape phenotypic diversity during evolution. However, the extent to which these divergences could be explained by the evolving cis-regulatory versus trans-acting factors remains unresolved. To globally investigate the relative contributions of the two factors for the first time in mammals, we measured splicing difference between C57BL/6J and SPRET/EiJ mouse strains and allele-specific splicing pattern in their F1 hybrid. Out of 11,818 alternative splicing events expressed in the cultured fibroblast cells, we identified 796 with significant difference between the parental strains. After integrating allele-specific data from F1 hybrid, we demonstrated that these events could be predominately attributed to cis-regulatory variants, including those residing at and beyond canonical splicing sites. Contrary to previous observations in Drosophila, such predominant contribution was consistently observed across different types of alternative splicing. Further analysis of liver tissues from the same mouse strains and reanalysis of published datasets on other strains showed similar trends, implying in general the predominant contribution of cis-regulatory changes in the evolution of mouse alternative splicing. PMID:26134616

  14. Direct functional consequences of ZRS enhancer mutation combine with secondary long range SHH signalling effects to cause preaxial polydactyly

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Edward J.; Neely, David M.; Dunn, Ian C.; Davey, Megan G.

    2014-01-01

    Sonic hedgehog (SHH) plays a central role in patterning numerous embryonic tissues including, classically, the developing limb bud where it controls digit number and identity. This study utilises the polydactylous Silkie (Slk) chicken breed, which carries a mutation in the long range limb-specific regulatory element of SHH, the ZRS. Using allele specific SHH expression analysis combined with quantitative protein analysis, we measure allele specific changes in SHH mRNA and concentration of SHH protein over time. This confirms that the Slk ZRS enhancer mutation causes increased SHH expression in the posterior leg mesenchyme. Secondary consequences of this increased SHH signalling include increased FGF pathway signalling and growth as predicted by the SHH/GREM1/FGF feedback loop and the Growth/Morphogen models. Manipulation of Hedgehog, FGF signalling and growth demonstrate that anterior-ectopic expression of SHH and induction of preaxial polydactyly is induced secondary to increased SHH signalling and Hedgehog-dependent growth directed from the posterior limb. We predict that increased long range SHH signalling acts in combination with changes in activation of SHH transcription from the Slk ZRS allele. Through analysis of the temporal dynamics of anterior SHH induction we predict a gene regulatory network which may contribute to activation of anterior SHH expression from the Slk ZRS. PMID:24907417

  15. Comparative genomics of metabolic capacities of regulons controlled by cis-regulatory RNA motifs in bacteria

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background In silico comparative genomics approaches have been efficiently used for functional prediction and reconstruction of metabolic and regulatory networks. Riboswitches are metabolite-sensing structures often found in bacterial mRNA leaders controlling gene expression on transcriptional or translational levels. An increasing number of riboswitches and other cis-regulatory RNAs have been recently classified into numerous RNA families in the Rfam database. High conservation of these RNA motifs provides a unique advantage for their genomic identification and comparative analysis. Results A comparative genomics approach implemented in the RegPredict tool was used for reconstruction and functional annotation of regulons controlled by RNAs from 43 Rfam families in diverse taxonomic groups of Bacteria. The inferred regulons include ~5200 cis-regulatory RNAs and more than 12000 target genes in 255 microbial genomes. All predicted RNA-regulated genes were classified into specific and overall functional categories. Analysis of taxonomic distribution of these categories allowed us to establish major functional preferences for each analyzed cis-regulatory RNA motif family. Overall, most RNA motif regulons showed predictable functional content in accordance with their experimentally established effector ligands. Our results suggest that some RNA motifs (including thiamin pyrophosphate and cobalamin riboswitches that control the cofactor metabolism) are widespread and likely originated from the last common ancestor of all bacteria. However, many more analyzed RNA motifs are restricted to a narrow taxonomic group of bacteria and likely represent more recent evolutionary innovations. Conclusions The reconstructed regulatory networks for major known RNA motifs substantially expand the existing knowledge of transcriptional regulation in bacteria. The inferred regulons can be used for genetic experiments, functional annotations of genes, metabolic reconstruction and

  16. Rapid evolution of cis-regulatory sequences via local point mutations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stone, J. R.; Wray, G. A.

    2001-01-01

    Although the evolution of protein-coding sequences within genomes is well understood, the same cannot be said of the cis-regulatory regions that control transcription. Yet, changes in gene expression are likely to constitute an important component of phenotypic evolution. We simulated the evolution of new transcription factor binding sites via local point mutations. The results indicate that new binding sites appear and become fixed within populations on microevolutionary timescales under an assumption of neutral evolution. Even combinations of two new binding sites evolve very quickly. We predict that local point mutations continually generate considerable genetic variation that is capable of altering gene expression.

  17. Systems analysis of cis-regulatory motifs in C4 photosynthesis genes using maize and rice leaf transcriptomic data during a process of de-etiolation

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Jiajia; Bräutigam, Andrea; Weber, Andreas P. M.; Zhu, Xin-Guang

    2016-01-01

    Identification of potential cis-regulatory motifs controlling the development of C4 photosynthesis is a major focus of current research. In this study, we used time-series RNA-seq data collected from etiolated maize and rice leaf tissues sampled during a de-etiolation process to systematically characterize the expression patterns of C4-related genes and to further identify potential cis elements in five different genomic regions (i.e. promoter, 5′UTR, 3′UTR, intron, and coding sequence) of C4 orthologous genes. The results demonstrate that although most of the C4 genes show similar expression patterns, a number of them, including chloroplast dicarboxylate transporter 1, aspartate aminotransferase, and triose phosphate transporter, show shifted expression patterns compared with their C3 counterparts. A number of conserved short DNA motifs between maize C4 genes and their rice orthologous genes were identified not only in the promoter, 5′UTR, 3′UTR, and coding sequences, but also in the introns of core C4 genes. We also identified cis-regulatory motifs that exist in maize C4 genes and also in genes showing similar expression patterns as maize C4 genes but that do not exist in rice C3 orthologs, suggesting a possible recruitment of pre-existing cis-elements from genes unrelated to C4 photosynthesis into C4 photosynthesis genes during C4 evolution. PMID:27436282

  18. Identification of cis regulatory features in the embryonic zebrafish genome through large-scale profiling of H3K4me1 and H3K4me3 binding sites

    PubMed Central

    Aday, Aaron W.; Zhu, Lihua Julie; Lakshmanan, Abirami; Wang, Jie; Lawson, Nathan D.

    2011-01-01

    An organism’s genome sequence serves as a blueprint for the proteins and regulatory RNAs essential for cellular function. The genome also harbors cis-acting non-coding sequences that control gene expression and are essential to coordinate regulatory programs during embryonic development. However, the genome sequence is largely identical between cell types within a multi-cellular organism indicating that factors such as DNA accessibility and chromatin structure play a crucial role in governing cell-specific gene expression. Recent studies have identified particular chromatin modifications that define functionally distinct cis regulatory elements. Among these are forms of histone 3 that are mono- or tri-methylated at lysine 4 (H3K4me1 or H3K4me3, respectively), which bind preferentially to promoter and enhancer elements in the mammalian genome. In this work, we investigated whether these modified histones could similarly identify cis regulatory elements within the zebrafish genome. By applying chromatin immunoprecipitation followed by deep sequencing, we find that H3K4me1 and H3K4me3 are enriched at transcriptional start sites in the genome of the developing zebrafish embryo and that this association correlates with gene expression. We further find that these modifications associate with distal non-coding conserved elements, including known active enhancers. Finally, we demonstrate that it is possible to utilize H3K4me1 and H3K4me3 binding profiles in combination with available expression data to computationally identify relevant cis regulatory sequences flanking syn-expressed genes in the developing embryo. Taken together, our results indicate that H3K4me1 and H3K4me3 generally mark cis regulatory elements within the zebrafish genome and indicate that further characterization of the zebrafish using this approach will prove valuable in defining transcriptional networks in this model system. PMID:21435340

  19. Genome-wide de novo prediction of cis-regulatory binding sites in prokaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Shaoqiang; Xu, Minli; Su, Zhengchang

    2009-01-01

    Although cis-regulatory binding sites (CRBSs) are at least as important as the coding sequences in a genome, our general understanding of them in most sequenced genomes is very limited due to the lack of efficient and accurate experimental and computational methods for their characterization, which has largely hindered our understanding of many important biological processes. In this article, we describe a novel algorithm for genome-wide de novo prediction of CRBSs with high accuracy. We designed our algorithm to circumvent three identified difficulties for CRBS prediction using comparative genomics principles based on a new method for the selection of reference genomes, a new metric for measuring the similarity of CRBSs, and a new graph clustering procedure. When operon structures are correctly predicted, our algorithm can predict 81% of known individual binding sites belonging to 94% of known cis-regulatory motifs in the Escherichia coli K12 genome, while achieving high prediction specificity. Our algorithm has also achieved similar prediction accuracy in the Bacillus subtilis genome, suggesting that it is very robust, and thus can be applied to any other sequenced prokaryotic genome. When compared with the prior state-of-the-art algorithms, our algorithm outperforms them in both prediction sensitivity and specificity. PMID:19383880

  20. The structure and evolution of cis-regulatory regions: the shavenbaby story

    PubMed Central

    Stern, David L.; Frankel, Nicolás

    2013-01-01

    In this paper, we provide a historical account of the contribution of a single line of research to our current understanding of the structure of cis-regulatory regions and the genetic basis for morphological evolution. We revisit the experiments that shed light on the evolution of larval cuticular patterns within the genus Drosophila and the evolution and structure of the shavenbaby gene. We describe the experiments that led to the discovery that multiple genetic changes in the cis-regulatory region of shavenbaby caused the loss of dorsal cuticular hairs (quaternary trichomes) in first instar larvae of Drosophila sechellia. We also discuss the experiments that showed that the convergent loss of quaternary trichomes in D. sechellia and Drosophila ezoana was generated by parallel genetic changes in orthologous enhancers of shavenbaby. We discuss the observation that multiple shavenbaby enhancers drive overlapping patterns of expression in the embryo and that these apparently redundant enhancers ensure robust shavenbaby expression and trichome morphogenesis under stressful conditions. All together, these data, collected over 13 years, provide a fundamental case study in the fields of gene regulation and morphological evolution, and highlight the importance of prolonged, detailed studies of single genes. PMID:24218640

  1. Imogene: identification of motifs and cis-regulatory modules underlying gene co-regulation

    PubMed Central

    Rouault, Hervé; Santolini, Marc; Schweisguth, François; Hakim, Vincent

    2014-01-01

    Cis-regulatory modules (CRMs) and motifs play a central role in tissue and condition-specific gene expression. Here we present Imogene, an ensemble of statistical tools that we have developed to facilitate their identification and implemented in a publicly available software. Starting from a small training set of mammalian or fly CRMs that drive similar gene expression profiles, Imogene determines de novo cis-regulatory motifs that underlie this co-expression. It can then predict on a genome-wide scale other CRMs with a regulatory potential similar to the training set. Imogene bypasses the need of large datasets for statistical analyses by making central use of the information provided by the sequenced genomes of multiple species, based on the developed statistical tools and explicit models for transcription factor binding site evolution. We test Imogene on characterized tissue-specific mouse developmental CRMs. Its ability to identify CRMs with the same specificity based on its de novo created motifs is comparable to that of previously evaluated ‘motif-blind’ methods. We further show, both in flies and in mammals, that Imogene de novo generated motifs are sufficient to discriminate CRMs related to different developmental programs. Notably, purely relying on sequence data, Imogene performs as well in this discrimination task as a previously reported learning algorithm based on Chromatin Immunoprecipitation (ChIP) data for multiple transcription factors at multiple developmental stages. PMID:24682824

  2. Recent mating-system evolution in Eichhornia is accompanied by cis-regulatory divergence.

    PubMed

    Arunkumar, Ramesh; Maddison, Teresa I; Barrett, Spencer C H; Wright, Stephen I

    2016-07-01

    The evolution of predominant self-fertilization from cross-fertilization in plants is accompanied by diverse changes to morphology, ecology and genetics, some of which likely result from regulatory changes in gene expression. We examined changes in gene expression during early stages in the transition to selfing in populations of animal-pollinated Eichhornia paniculata with contrasting mating patterns. We crossed plants from outcrossing and selfing populations and tested for the presence of allele-specific expression (ASE) in floral buds and leaf tissue of F1 offspring, indicative of cis-regulatory changes. We identified 1365 genes exhibiting ASE in floral buds and leaf tissue. These genes preferentially expressed alleles from outcrossing parents. Moreover, we found evidence that genes exhibiting ASE had a greater nonsynonymous diversity compared to synonymous diversity in the selfing parents. Our results suggest that the transition from outcrossing to high rates of self-fertilization may have the potential to shape the cis-regulatory genomic landscape of angiosperm species, but that the changes in ASE may be moderate, particularly during the early stages of this transition. PMID:26990568

  3. Raman spectra of ZrS3-xSex

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Provencher, R.; Jandl, S.; Carlone, C.

    1982-12-01

    Raman spectra of the one-dimensional ZrS3-ZrSe3 solid solutions are reported. A mixed one-mode and two-mode phonon behavior is observed. The study of the phonon width indicates a higher sensitivity to disorder in the case of the one-mode phonons compared to the case of the two-mode phonons.

  4. Establishment of a Developmental Compartment Requires Interactions between Three Synergistic Cis-regulatory Modules

    PubMed Central

    Bieli, Dimitri; Kanca, Oguz; Requena, David; Hamaratoglu, Fisun; Gohl, Daryl; Schedl, Paul; Affolter, Markus; Slattery, Matthew; Müller, Martin; Estella, Carlos

    2015-01-01

    The subdivision of cell populations in compartments is a key event during animal development. In Drosophila, the gene apterous (ap) divides the wing imaginal disc in dorsal vs ventral cell lineages and is required for wing formation. ap function as a dorsal selector gene has been extensively studied. However, the regulation of its expression during wing development is poorly understood. In this study, we analyzed ap transcriptional regulation at the endogenous locus and identified three cis-regulatory modules (CRMs) essential for wing development. Only when the three CRMs are combined, robust ap expression is obtained. In addition, we genetically and molecularly analyzed the trans-factors that regulate these CRMs. Our results propose a three-step mechanism for the cell lineage compartment expression of ap that includes initial activation, positive autoregulation and Trithorax-mediated maintenance through separable CRMs. PMID:26468882

  5. Identification of three new cis-regulatory IRF5 polymorphisms: in vitro studies

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Polymorphisms in the interferon regulatory factor 5 (IRF5) gene are associated with susceptibility to systemic lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis and other diseases through independent risk and protective haplotypes. Several functional polymorphisms are already known, but they do not account for the protective haplotypes that are tagged by the minor allele of rs729302. Methods Polymorphisms in linkage disequilibrium (LD) with rs729302 or particularly associated with IRF5 expression were selected for functional screening, which involved electrophoretic mobility shift assays (EMSAs) and reporter gene assays. Results A total of 54 single-nucleotide polymorphisms in the 5' region of IRF5 were genotyped. Twenty-four of them were selected for functional screening because of their high LD with rs729302 or protective haplotypes. In addition, two polymorphisms were selected for their prominent association with IRF5 expression. Seven of these twenty-six polymorphisms showed reproducible allele differences in EMSA. The seven were subsequently analyzed in gene reporter assays, and three of them showed significant differences between their two alleles: rs729302, rs13245639 and rs11269962. Haplotypes including the cis-regulatory polymorphisms correlated very well with IRF5 mRNA expression in an analysis based on previous data. Conclusion We have found that three polymorphisms in LD with the protective haplotypes of IRF5 have differential allele effects in EMSA and in reporter gene assays. Identification of these cis-regulatory polymorphisms will allow more accurate analysis of transcriptional regulation of IRF5 expression, more powerful genetic association studies and deeper insight into the role of IRF5 in disease susceptibility. PMID:23941291

  6. Identification of tissue-specific cis-regulatory modules based on interactions between transcription factors

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Xueping; Lin, Jimmy; Zack, Donald J; Qian, Jiang

    2007-01-01

    Background Evolutionary conservation has been used successfully to help identify cis-acting DNA regions that are important in regulating tissue-specific gene expression. Motivated by increasing evidence that some DNA regulatory regions are not evolutionary conserved, we have developed an approach for cis-regulatory region identification that does not rely upon evolutionary sequence conservation. Results The conservation-independent approach is based on an empirical potential energy between interacting transcription factors (TFs). In this analysis, the potential energy is defined as a function of the number of TF interactions in a genomic region and the strength of the interactions. By identifying sets of interacting TFs, the analysis locates regions enriched with the binding sites of these interacting TFs. We applied this approach to 30 human tissues and identified 6232 putative cis-regulatory modules (CRMs) regulating 2130 tissue-specific genes. Interestingly, some genes appear to be regulated by different CRMs in different tissues. Known regulatory regions are highly enriched in our predicted CRMs. In addition, DNase I hypersensitive sites, which tend to be associated with active regulatory regions, significantly overlap with the predicted CRMs, but not with more conserved regions. We also find that conserved and non-conserved CRMs regulate distinct gene groups. Conserved CRMs control more essential genes and genes involved in fundamental cellular activities such as transcription. In contrast, non-conserved CRMs, in general, regulate more non-essential genes, such as genes related to neural activity. Conclusion These results demonstrate that identifying relevant sets of binding motifs can help in the mapping of DNA regulatory regions, and suggest that non-conserved CRMs play an important role in gene regulation. PMID:17996093

  7. New cis-regulatory elements in the Rht-D1b locus region of wheat

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Fifteen gene-containing BACs with accumulated length of 1.82-Mb from the Rht-D1b locus region weresequenced and compared in detail with the orthologous regions of rice, sorghum, and maize. Our results show that Rht-D1b represents a conserved genomic region as implied by high gene sequence identity...

  8. Evolution of lineage-specific functions in ancient cis-regulatory modules.

    PubMed

    Pauls, Stefan; Goode, Debbie K; Petrone, Libero; Oliveri, Paola; Elgar, Greg

    2015-11-01

    Morphological evolution is driven both by coding sequence variation and by changes in regulatory sequences. However, how cis-regulatory modules (CRMs) evolve to generate entirely novel expression domains is largely unknown. Here, we reconstruct the evolutionary history of a lens enhancer located within a CRM that not only predates the lens, a vertebrate innovation, but bilaterian animals in general. Alignments of orthologous sequences from different deuterostomes sub-divide the CRM into a deeply conserved core and a more divergent flanking region. We demonstrate that all deuterostome flanking regions, including invertebrate sequences, activate gene expression in the zebrafish lens through the same ancient cluster of activator sites. However, levels of gene expression vary between species due to the presence of repressor motifs in flanking region and core. These repressor motifs are responsible for the relatively weak enhancer activity of tetrapod flanking regions. Ray-finned fish, however, have gained two additional lineage-specific activator motifs which in combination with the ancient cluster of activators and the core constitute a potent lens enhancer. The exploitation and modification of existing regulatory potential in flanking regions but not in the highly conserved core might represent a more general model for the emergence of novel regulatory functions in complex CRMs. PMID:26538567

  9. Complex interactions between cis-regulatory modules in native conformation are critical for Drosophila snail expression.

    PubMed

    Dunipace, Leslie; Ozdemir, Anil; Stathopoulos, Angelike

    2011-09-01

    It has been shown in several organisms that multiple cis-regulatory modules (CRMs) of a gene locus can be active concurrently to support similar spatiotemporal expression. To understand the functional importance of such seemingly redundant CRMs, we examined two CRMs from the Drosophila snail gene locus, which are both active in the ventral region of pre-gastrulation embryos. By performing a deletion series in a ∼25 kb DNA rescue construct using BAC recombineering and site-directed transgenesis, we demonstrate that the two CRMs are not redundant. The distal CRM is absolutely required for viability, whereas the proximal CRM is required only under extreme conditions such as high temperature. Consistent with their distinct requirements, the CRMs support distinct expression patterns: the proximal CRM exhibits an expanded expression domain relative to endogenous snail, whereas the distal CRM exhibits almost complete overlap with snail except at the anterior-most pole. We further show that the distal CRM normally limits the increased expression domain of the proximal CRM and that the proximal CRM serves as a `damper' for the expression levels driven by the distal CRM. Thus, the two CRMs interact in cis in a non-additive fashion and these interactions may be important for fine-tuning the domains and levels of gene expression. PMID:21813571

  10. Validation of Skeletal Muscle cis-Regulatory Module Predictions Reveals Nucleotide Composition Bias in Functional Enhancers

    PubMed Central

    Kwon, Andrew T.; Chou, Alice Yi; Arenillas, David J.; Wasserman, Wyeth W.

    2011-01-01

    We performed a genome-wide scan for muscle-specific cis-regulatory modules (CRMs) using three computational prediction programs. Based on the predictions, 339 candidate CRMs were tested in cell culture with NIH3T3 fibroblasts and C2C12 myoblasts for capacity to direct selective reporter gene expression to differentiated C2C12 myotubes. A subset of 19 CRMs validated as functional in the assay. The rate of predictive success reveals striking limitations of computational regulatory sequence analysis methods for CRM discovery. Motif-based methods performed no better than predictions based only on sequence conservation. Analysis of the properties of the functional sequences relative to inactive sequences identifies nucleotide sequence composition can be an important characteristic to incorporate in future methods for improved predictive specificity. Muscle-related TFBSs predicted within the functional sequences display greater sequence conservation than non-TFBS flanking regions. Comparison with recent MyoD and histone modification ChIP-Seq data supports the validity of the functional regions. PMID:22144875

  11. Bacterial regulon modeling and prediction based on systematic cis regulatory motif analyses.

    PubMed

    Liu, Bingqiang; Zhou, Chuan; Li, Guojun; Zhang, Hanyuan; Zeng, Erliang; Liu, Qi; Ma, Qin

    2016-01-01

    Regulons are the basic units of the response system in a bacterial cell, and each consists of a set of transcriptionally co-regulated operons. Regulon elucidation is the basis for studying the bacterial global transcriptional regulation network. In this study, we designed a novel co-regulation score between a pair of operons based on accurate operon identification and cis regulatory motif analyses, which can capture their co-regulation relationship much better than other scores. Taking full advantage of this discovery, we developed a new computational framework and built a novel graph model for regulon prediction. This model integrates the motif comparison and clustering and makes the regulon prediction problem substantially more solvable and accurate. To evaluate our prediction, a regulon coverage score was designed based on the documented regulons and their overlap with our prediction; and a modified Fisher Exact test was implemented to measure how well our predictions match the co-expressed modules derived from E. coli microarray gene-expression datasets collected under 466 conditions. The results indicate that our program consistently performed better than others in terms of the prediction accuracy. This suggests that our algorithms substantially improve the state-of-the-art, leading to a computational capability to reliably predict regulons for any bacteria. PMID:26975728

  12. Bacterial regulon modeling and prediction based on systematic cis regulatory motif analyses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Bingqiang; Zhou, Chuan; Li, Guojun; Zhang, Hanyuan; Zeng, Erliang; Liu, Qi; Ma, Qin

    2016-03-01

    Regulons are the basic units of the response system in a bacterial cell, and each consists of a set of transcriptionally co-regulated operons. Regulon elucidation is the basis for studying the bacterial global transcriptional regulation network. In this study, we designed a novel co-regulation score between a pair of operons based on accurate operon identification and cis regulatory motif analyses, which can capture their co-regulation relationship much better than other scores. Taking full advantage of this discovery, we developed a new computational framework and built a novel graph model for regulon prediction. This model integrates the motif comparison and clustering and makes the regulon prediction problem substantially more solvable and accurate. To evaluate our prediction, a regulon coverage score was designed based on the documented regulons and their overlap with our prediction; and a modified Fisher Exact test was implemented to measure how well our predictions match the co-expressed modules derived from E. coli microarray gene-expression datasets collected under 466 conditions. The results indicate that our program consistently performed better than others in terms of the prediction accuracy. This suggests that our algorithms substantially improve the state-of-the-art, leading to a computational capability to reliably predict regulons for any bacteria.

  13. Extensive conservation of ancient microsynteny across metazoans due to cis-regulatory constraints

    PubMed Central

    Irimia, Manuel; Tena, Juan J.; Alexis, Maria S.; Fernandez-Miñan, Ana; Maeso, Ignacio; Bogdanović, Ozren; de la Calle-Mustienes, Elisa; Roy, Scott W.; Gómez-Skarmeta, José L.; Fraser, Hunter B.

    2012-01-01

    The order of genes in eukaryotic genomes has generally been assumed to be neutral, since gene order is largely scrambled over evolutionary time. Only a handful of exceptional examples are known, typically involving deeply conserved clusters of tandemly duplicated genes (e.g., Hox genes and histones). Here we report the first systematic survey of microsynteny conservation across metazoans, utilizing 17 genome sequences. We identified nearly 600 pairs of unrelated genes that have remained tightly physically linked in diverse lineages across over 600 million years of evolution. Integrating sequence conservation, gene expression data, gene function, epigenetic marks, and other genomic features, we provide extensive evidence that many conserved ancient linkages involve (1) the coordinated transcription of neighboring genes, or (2) genomic regulatory blocks (GRBs) in which transcriptional enhancers controlling developmental genes are contained within nearby bystander genes. In addition, we generated ChIP-seq data for key histone modifications in zebrafish embryos, which provided further evidence of putative GRBs in embryonic development. Finally, using chromosome conformation capture (3C) assays and stable transgenic experiments, we demonstrate that enhancers within bystander genes drive the expression of genes such as Otx and Islet, critical regulators of central nervous system development across bilaterians. These results suggest that ancient genomic functional associations are far more common than previously thought—involving ∼12% of the ancestral bilaterian genome—and that cis-regulatory constraints are crucial in determining metazoan genome architecture. PMID:22722344

  14. Bacterial regulon modeling and prediction based on systematic cis regulatory motif analyses

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Bingqiang; Zhou, Chuan; Li, Guojun; Zhang, Hanyuan; Zeng, Erliang; Liu, Qi; Ma, Qin

    2016-01-01

    Regulons are the basic units of the response system in a bacterial cell, and each consists of a set of transcriptionally co-regulated operons. Regulon elucidation is the basis for studying the bacterial global transcriptional regulation network. In this study, we designed a novel co-regulation score between a pair of operons based on accurate operon identification and cis regulatory motif analyses, which can capture their co-regulation relationship much better than other scores. Taking full advantage of this discovery, we developed a new computational framework and built a novel graph model for regulon prediction. This model integrates the motif comparison and clustering and makes the regulon prediction problem substantially more solvable and accurate. To evaluate our prediction, a regulon coverage score was designed based on the documented regulons and their overlap with our prediction; and a modified Fisher Exact test was implemented to measure how well our predictions match the co-expressed modules derived from E. coli microarray gene-expression datasets collected under 466 conditions. The results indicate that our program consistently performed better than others in terms of the prediction accuracy. This suggests that our algorithms substantially improve the state-of-the-art, leading to a computational capability to reliably predict regulons for any bacteria. PMID:26975728

  15. Maps of cis-Regulatory Nodes in Megabase Long Genome Segments are an Inevitable Intermediate Step Toward Whole Genome Functional Mapping

    PubMed Central

    Nikolaev, Lev G; Akopov, Sergey B; Chernov, Igor P; Sverdlov, Eugene D

    2007-01-01

    The availability of complete human and other metazoan genome sequences has greatly facilitated positioning and analysis of various genomic functional elements, with initial emphasis on coding sequences. However, complete functional maps of sequenced eukaryotic genomes should include also positions of all non-coding regulatory elements. Unfortunately, experimental data on genomic positions of a multitude of regulatory sequences, such as enhancers, silencers, insulators, transcription terminators, and replication origins are very limited, especially at the whole genome level. Since most genomic regulatory elements (e.g. enhancers) are generally gene-, tissue-, or cell-specific, the prediction of these elements by computational methods is difficult and often ambiguous. Therefore, the development of high-throughput experimental approaches for identifying and mapping genomic functional elements is highly desirable. At the same time, the creation of whole-genome map of hundreds of thousands of regulatory elements in several hundreds of tissue/cell types is presently far beyond our capabilities. A possible alternative for the whole genome approach is to concentrate efforts on individual genomic segments and then to integrate the data obtained into a whole genome functional map. Moreover, the maps of polygenic fragments with functional cis-regulatory elements would provide valuable data on complex regulatory systems, including their variability and evolution. Here, we reviewed experimental approaches to the realization of these ideas, including our own developments of experimental techniques for selection of cis-acting functionally active DNA fragments from large (megabase-sized) segments of mammalian genomes. PMID:18660850

  16. Maps of cis-Regulatory Nodes in Megabase Long Genome Segments are an Inevitable Intermediate Step Toward Whole Genome Functional Mapping.

    PubMed

    Nikolaev, Lev G; Akopov, Sergey B; Chernov, Igor P; Sverdlov, Eugene D

    2007-04-01

    The availability of complete human and other metazoan genome sequences has greatly facilitated positioning and analysis of various genomic functional elements, with initial emphasis on coding sequences. However, complete functional maps of sequenced eukaryotic genomes should include also positions of all non-coding regulatory elements. Unfortunately, experimental data on genomic positions of a multitude of regulatory sequences, such as enhancers, silencers, insulators, transcription terminators, and replication origins are very limited, especially at the whole genome level. Since most genomic regulatory elements (e.g. enhancers) are generally gene-, tissue-, or cell-specific, the prediction of these elements by computational methods is difficult and often ambiguous. Therefore, the development of high-throughput experimental approaches for identifying and mapping genomic functional elements is highly desirable. At the same time, the creation of whole-genome map of hundreds of thousands of regulatory elements in several hundreds of tissue/cell types is presently far beyond our capabilities. A possible alternative for the whole genome approach is to concentrate efforts on individual genomic segments and then to integrate the data obtained into a whole genome functional map. Moreover, the maps of polygenic fragments with functional cis-regulatory elements would provide valuable data on complex regulatory systems, including their variability and evolution. Here, we reviewed experimental approaches to the realization of these ideas, including our own developments of experimental techniques for selection of cis-acting functionally active DNA fragments from large (megabase-sized) segments of mammalian genomes. PMID:18660850

  17. Single nucleotide polymorphisms with cis-regulatory effects on long non-coding transcripts in human primary monocytes.

    PubMed

    Almlöf, Jonas Carlsson; Lundmark, Per; Lundmark, Anders; Ge, Bing; Pastinen, Tomi; Goodall, Alison H; Cambien, François; Deloukas, Panos; Ouwehand, Willem H; Syvänen, Ann-Christine

    2014-01-01

    We applied genome-wide allele-specific expression analysis of monocytes from 188 samples. Monocytes were purified from white blood cells of healthy blood donors to detect cis-acting genetic variation that regulates the expression of long non-coding RNAs. We analysed 8929 regions harboring genes for potential long non-coding RNA that were retrieved from data from the ENCODE project. Of these regions, 60% were annotated as intergenic, which implies that they do not overlap with protein-coding genes. Focusing on the intergenic regions, and using stringent analysis of the allele-specific expression data, we detected robust cis-regulatory SNPs in 258 out of 489 informative intergenic regions included in the analysis. The cis-regulatory SNPs that were significantly associated with allele-specific expression of long non-coding RNAs were enriched to enhancer regions marked for active or bivalent, poised chromatin by histone modifications. Out of the lncRNA regions regulated by cis-acting regulatory SNPs, 20% (n = 52) were co-regulated with the closest protein coding gene. We compared the identified cis-regulatory SNPs with those in the catalog of SNPs identified by genome-wide association studies of human diseases and traits. This comparison identified 32 SNPs in loci from genome-wide association studies that displayed a strong association signal with allele-specific expression of non-coding RNAs in monocytes, with p-values ranging from 6.7×10(-7) to 9.5×10(-89). The identified cis-regulatory SNPs are associated with diseases of the immune system, like multiple sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis. PMID:25025429

  18. Mapping Association between Long-Range Cis-Regulatory Regions and Their Target Genes Using Comparative Genomics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mongin, Emmanuel; Dewar, Ken; Blanchette, Mathieu

    In chordates, long-range cis-regulatory regions are involved in the control of transcription initiation (either as repressors or enhancers). They can be located as far as 1 Mb from the transcription start site of the target gene and can regulate more than one gene. Therefore, proper characterization of functional interactions between long-range cis-regulatory regions and their target genes remains problematic. We present a novel method to predict such interactions based on the analysis of rearrangements between the human and 16 other vertebrate genomes. Our method is based on the assumption that genome rearrangements that would disrupt the functional interaction between a cis-regulatory region and its target gene are likely to be deleterious. Therefore, conservation of synteny through evolution would be an indication of a functional interaction. We use our algorithm to classify a set of 1,406,084 putative associations from the human genome. This genome-wide map of interactions has many potential applications, including the selection of candidate regions prior to in vivo experimental characterization, a better characterization of regulatory regions involved in position effect diseases, and an improved understanding of the mechanisms and importance of long-range regulation.

  19. Balanced polymorphism in bottlenecked populations: the case of the CCR5 5' cis-regulatory region in Amazonian Amerindians.

    PubMed

    Ramalho, Rodrigo F; Santos, Eduardo J M; Guerreiro, João F; Meyer, Diogo

    2010-09-01

    The 5' cis-regulatory region of the CCR5 gene exhibits a strong signature of balancing selection in several human populations. Here we analyze the polymorphism of this region in Amerindians from Amazonia, who have a complex demographic history, including recent bottlenecks that are known to reduce genetic variability. Amerindians show high nucleotide diversity (pi = 0.27%) and significantly positive Tajima's D, and carry haplotypes associated with weak and strong gene expression. To evaluate whether these signatures of balancing selection could be explained by demography, we perform neutrality tests based on empiric and simulated data. The observed Tajima's D was higher than that of other world populations; higher than that found for 18 noncoding regions of South Amerindians, and higher than 99.6% of simulated genealogies, which assume nonequilibrium conditions. Moreover, comparing Amerindians and Asians, the Fst for CCR5 cis-regulatory region was unusually low, in relation to neutral markers. These findings indicate that, despite their complex demographic history, South Amerindians carry a detectable signature of selection on the CCR5 cis-regulatory region. PMID:20538030

  20. Shh and ZRS enhancer colocalisation is specific to the zone of polarising activity.

    PubMed

    Williamson, Iain; Lettice, Laura A; Hill, Robert E; Bickmore, Wendy A

    2016-08-15

    Limb-specific Shh expression is regulated by the (∼1 Mb distant) ZRS enhancer. In the mouse, limb bud-restricted spatiotemporal Shh expression occurs from ∼E10 to E11.5 at the distal posterior margin and is essential for correct autopod formation. Here, we have analysed the higher-order chromatin conformation of Shh in expressing and non-expressing tissues, both by fluorescence in situ hybridisation (FISH) and by chromosome conformation capture (5C). Conventional and super-resolution light microscopy identified significantly elevated frequencies of Shh/ZRS colocalisation only in the Shh-expressing regions of the limb bud, in a conformation consistent with enhancer-promoter loop formation. However, in all tissues and at all developmental stages analysed, Shh-ZRS spatial distances were still consistently shorter than those to a neural enhancer located between Shh and ZRS in the genome. 5C identified a topologically associating domain (TAD) over the Shh/ZRS genomic region and enriched interactions between Shh and ZRS throughout E11.5 embryos. Shh/ZRS colocalisation, therefore, correlates with the spatiotemporal domain of limb bud-specific Shh expression, but close Shh and ZRS proximity in the nucleus occurs regardless of whether the gene or enhancer is active. We suggest that this constrained chromatin configuration optimises the opportunity for the active enhancer to locate and instigate the expression of Shh. PMID:27402708

  1. Shh and ZRS enhancer colocalisation is specific to the zone of polarising activity

    PubMed Central

    Williamson, Iain; Lettice, Laura A.; Hill, Robert E.

    2016-01-01

    Limb-specific Shh expression is regulated by the (∼1 Mb distant) ZRS enhancer. In the mouse, limb bud-restricted spatiotemporal Shh expression occurs from ∼E10 to E11.5 at the distal posterior margin and is essential for correct autopod formation. Here, we have analysed the higher-order chromatin conformation of Shh in expressing and non-expressing tissues, both by fluorescence in situ hybridisation (FISH) and by chromosome conformation capture (5C). Conventional and super-resolution light microscopy identified significantly elevated frequencies of Shh/ZRS colocalisation only in the Shh-expressing regions of the limb bud, in a conformation consistent with enhancer-promoter loop formation. However, in all tissues and at all developmental stages analysed, Shh-ZRS spatial distances were still consistently shorter than those to a neural enhancer located between Shh and ZRS in the genome. 5C identified a topologically associating domain (TAD) over the Shh/ZRS genomic region and enriched interactions between Shh and ZRS throughout E11.5 embryos. Shh/ZRS colocalisation, therefore, correlates with the spatiotemporal domain of limb bud-specific Shh expression, but close Shh and ZRS proximity in the nucleus occurs regardless of whether the gene or enhancer is active. We suggest that this constrained chromatin configuration optimises the opportunity for the active enhancer to locate and instigate the expression of Shh. PMID:27402708

  2. Functional Evolution of cis-Regulatory Modules at a Homeotic Gene in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Schiller, Benjamin J.; Bae, Esther; Tran, Diana A.; Shur, Andrey S.; Allen, John M.; Rau, Christoph; Bender, Welcome; Fisher, William W.; Celniker, Susan E.; Drewell, Robert A.

    2009-01-01

    It is a long-held belief in evolutionary biology that the rate of molecular evolution for a given DNA sequence is inversely related to the level of functional constraint. This belief holds true for the protein-coding homeotic (Hox) genes originally discovered in Drosophila melanogaster. Expression of the Hox genes in Drosophila embryos is essential for body patterning and is controlled by an extensive array of cis-regulatory modules (CRMs). How the regulatory modules functionally evolve in different species is not clear. A comparison of the CRMs for the Abdominal-B gene from different Drosophila species reveals relatively low levels of overall sequence conservation. However, embryonic enhancer CRMs from other Drosophila species direct transgenic reporter gene expression in the same spatial and temporal patterns during development as their D. melanogaster orthologs. Bioinformatic analysis reveals the presence of short conserved sequences within defined CRMs, representing gap and pair-rule transcription factor binding sites. One predicted binding site for the gap transcription factor KRUPPEL in the IAB5 CRM was found to be altered in Superabdominal (Sab) mutations. In Sab mutant flies, the third abdominal segment is transformed into a copy of the fifth abdominal segment. A model for KRUPPEL-mediated repression at this binding site is presented. These findings challenge our current understanding of the relationship between sequence evolution at the molecular level and functional activity of a CRM. While the overall sequence conservation at Drosophila CRMs is not distinctive from neighboring genomic regions, functionally critical transcription factor binding sites within embryonic enhancer CRMs are highly conserved. These results have implications for understanding mechanisms of gene expression during embryonic development, enhancer function, and the molecular evolution of eukaryotic regulatory modules. PMID:19893611

  3. Identification of High-Impact cis-Regulatory Mutations Using Transcription Factor Specific Random Forest Models

    PubMed Central

    Svetlichnyy, Dmitry; Imrichova, Hana; Fiers, Mark; Kalender Atak, Zeynep; Aerts, Stein

    2015-01-01

    Cancer genomes contain vast amounts of somatic mutations, many of which are passenger mutations not involved in oncogenesis. Whereas driver mutations in protein-coding genes can be distinguished from passenger mutations based on their recurrence, non-coding mutations are usually not recurrent at the same position. Therefore, it is still unclear how to identify cis-regulatory driver mutations, particularly when chromatin data from the same patient is not available, thus relying only on sequence and expression information. Here we use machine-learning methods to predict functional regulatory regions using sequence information alone, and compare the predicted activity of the mutated region with the reference sequence. This way we define the Predicted Regulatory Impact of a Mutation in an Enhancer (PRIME). We find that the recently identified driver mutation in the TAL1 enhancer has a high PRIME score, representing a “gain-of-target” for MYB, whereas the highly recurrent TERT promoter mutation has a surprisingly low PRIME score. We trained Random Forest models for 45 cancer-related transcription factors, and used these to score variations in the HeLa genome and somatic mutations across more than five hundred cancer genomes. Each model predicts only a small fraction of non-coding mutations with a potential impact on the function of the encompassing regulatory region. Nevertheless, as these few candidate driver mutations are often linked to gains in chromatin activity and gene expression, they may contribute to the oncogenic program by altering the expression levels of specific oncogenes and tumor suppressor genes. PMID:26562774

  4. Identification of High-Impact cis-Regulatory Mutations Using Transcription Factor Specific Random Forest Models.

    PubMed

    Svetlichnyy, Dmitry; Imrichova, Hana; Fiers, Mark; Kalender Atak, Zeynep; Aerts, Stein

    2015-11-01

    Cancer genomes contain vast amounts of somatic mutations, many of which are passenger mutations not involved in oncogenesis. Whereas driver mutations in protein-coding genes can be distinguished from passenger mutations based on their recurrence, non-coding mutations are usually not recurrent at the same position. Therefore, it is still unclear how to identify cis-regulatory driver mutations, particularly when chromatin data from the same patient is not available, thus relying only on sequence and expression information. Here we use machine-learning methods to predict functional regulatory regions using sequence information alone, and compare the predicted activity of the mutated region with the reference sequence. This way we define the Predicted Regulatory Impact of a Mutation in an Enhancer (PRIME). We find that the recently identified driver mutation in the TAL1 enhancer has a high PRIME score, representing a "gain-of-target" for MYB, whereas the highly recurrent TERT promoter mutation has a surprisingly low PRIME score. We trained Random Forest models for 45 cancer-related transcription factors, and used these to score variations in the HeLa genome and somatic mutations across more than five hundred cancer genomes. Each model predicts only a small fraction of non-coding mutations with a potential impact on the function of the encompassing regulatory region. Nevertheless, as these few candidate driver mutations are often linked to gains in chromatin activity and gene expression, they may contribute to the oncogenic program by altering the expression levels of specific oncogenes and tumor suppressor genes. PMID:26562774

  5. Conserved Cis-Regulatory Modules Control Robustness in Msx1 Expression at Single-Cell Resolution

    PubMed Central

    Vance, Keith W.; Woodcock, Dan J.; Reid, John E.; Bretschneider, Till; Ott, Sascha; Koentges, Georgy

    2015-01-01

    The process of transcription is highly stochastic leading to cell-to-cell variations and noise in gene expression levels. However, key essential genes have to be precisely expressed at the correct amount and time to ensure proper cellular development and function. Studies in yeast and bacterial systems have shown that gene expression noise decreases as mean expression levels increase, a relationship that is controlled by promoter DNA sequence. However, the function of distal cis-regulatory modules (CRMs), an evolutionary novelty of metazoans, in controlling transcriptional robustness and variability is poorly understood. In this study, we used live cell imaging of transfected reporters combined with a mathematical modelling and statistical inference scheme to quantify the function of conserved Msx1 CRMs and promoters in modulating single-cell real-time transcription rates in C2C12 mouse myoblasts. The results show that the mean expression–noise relationship is solely promoter controlled for this key pluripotency regulator. In addition, we demonstrate that CRMs modulate single-cell basal promoter rate distributions in a graded manner across a population of cells. This extends the rheostatic model of CRM action to provide a more detailed understanding of CRM function at single-cell resolution. We also identify a novel CRM transcriptional filter function that acts to reduce intracellular variability in transcription rates and show that this can be phylogenetically separable from rate modulating CRM activities. These results are important for understanding how the expression of key vertebrate developmental transcription factors is precisely controlled both within and between individual cells. PMID:26342140

  6. Conserved Cis-Regulatory Modules Control Robustness in Msx1 Expression at Single-Cell Resolution.

    PubMed

    Vance, Keith W; Woodcock, Dan J; Reid, John E; Bretschneider, Till; Ott, Sascha; Koentges, Georgy

    2015-09-01

    The process of transcription is highly stochastic leading to cell-to-cell variations and noise in gene expression levels. However, key essential genes have to be precisely expressed at the correct amount and time to ensure proper cellular development and function. Studies in yeast and bacterial systems have shown that gene expression noise decreases as mean expression levels increase, a relationship that is controlled by promoter DNA sequence. However, the function of distal cis-regulatory modules (CRMs), an evolutionary novelty of metazoans, in controlling transcriptional robustness and variability is poorly understood. In this study, we used live cell imaging of transfected reporters combined with a mathematical modelling and statistical inference scheme to quantify the function of conserved Msx1 CRMs and promoters in modulating single-cell real-time transcription rates in C2C12 mouse myoblasts. The results show that the mean expression-noise relationship is solely promoter controlled for this key pluripotency regulator. In addition, we demonstrate that CRMs modulate single-cell basal promoter rate distributions in a graded manner across a population of cells. This extends the rheostatic model of CRM action to provide a more detailed understanding of CRM function at single-cell resolution. We also identify a novel CRM transcriptional filter function that acts to reduce intracellular variability in transcription rates and show that this can be phylogenetically separable from rate modulating CRM activities. These results are important for understanding how the expression of key vertebrate developmental transcription factors is precisely controlled both within and between individual cells. PMID:26342140

  7. Controlled Synthesis of ZrS2 Monolayer and Few Layers on Hexagonal Boron Nitride.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Mei; Zhu, Yiming; Wang, Xinsheng; Feng, Qingliang; Qiao, Shanlin; Wen, Wen; Chen, Yanfeng; Cui, Menghua; Zhang, Jin; Cai, Congzhong; Xie, Liming

    2015-06-10

    Group IVB transition metal (Zr and Hf) dichalcogenide (TMD) monolayers can have higher carrier mobility and higher tunneling current density than group VIB (Mo and W) TMD monolayers. Here we report the synthesis of hexagonal ZrS2 monolayer and few layers on hexagonal boron nitride (BN) using ZrCl4 and S as precursors. The domain size of ZrS2 hexagons is around 1-3 μm. The number of layers of ZrS2 was controlled by tuning the evaporation temperature of ZrCl4. The stacking angle between ZrS2 and BN characterized by transmission electron microscopy shows a preferred stacking angle of near 0°. Field-effect transistors (FETs) fabricated on ZrS2 flakes showed n-type transport behavior with an estimated mobility of 0.1-1.1 cm(2) V(-1) s(-1). PMID:25996159

  8. Predicting tissue specific cis-regulatory modules in the human genome using pairs of co-occurring motifs

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Researchers seeking to unlock the genetic basis of human physiology and diseases have been studying gene transcription regulation. The temporal and spatial patterns of gene expression are controlled by mainly non-coding elements known as cis-regulatory modules (CRMs) and epigenetic factors. CRMs modulating related genes share the regulatory signature which consists of transcription factor (TF) binding sites (TFBSs). Identifying such CRMs is a challenging problem due to the prohibitive number of sequence sets that need to be analyzed. Results We formulated the challenge as a supervised classification problem even though experimentally validated CRMs were not required. Our efforts resulted in a software system named CrmMiner. The system mines for CRMs in the vicinity of related genes. CrmMiner requires two sets of sequences: a mixed set and a control set. Sequences in the vicinity of the related genes comprise the mixed set, whereas the control set includes random genomic sequences. CrmMiner assumes that a large percentage of the mixed set is made of background sequences that do not include CRMs. The system identifies pairs of closely located motifs representing vertebrate TFBSs that are enriched in the training mixed set consisting of 50% of the gene loci. In addition, CrmMiner selects a group of the enriched pairs to represent the tissue-specific regulatory signature. The mixed and the control sets are searched for candidate sequences that include any of the selected pairs. Next, an optimal Bayesian classifier is used to distinguish candidates found in the mixed set from their control counterparts. Our study proposes 62 tissue-specific regulatory signatures and putative CRMs for different human tissues and cell types. These signatures consist of assortments of ubiquitously expressed TFs and tissue-specific TFs. Under controlled settings, CrmMiner identified known CRMs in noisy sets up to 1:25 signal-to-noise ratio. CrmMiner was 21-75% more precise than a

  9. Promoter analysis reveals cis-regulatory motifs associated with the expression of the WRKY transcription factor CrWRKY1 in Catharanthus roseus.

    PubMed

    Yang, Zhirong; Patra, Barunava; Li, Runzhi; Pattanaik, Sitakanta; Yuan, Ling

    2013-12-01

    WRKY transcription factors (TFs) are emerging as an important group of regulators of plant secondary metabolism. However, the cis-regulatory elements associated with their regulation have not been well characterized. We have previously demonstrated that CrWRKY1, a member of subgroup III of the WRKY TF family, regulates biosynthesis of terpenoid indole alkaloids in the ornamental and medicinal plant, Catharanthus roseus. Here, we report the isolation and functional characterization of the CrWRKY1 promoter. In silico analysis of the promoter sequence reveals the presence of several potential TF binding motifs, indicating the involvement of additional TFs in the regulation of the TIA pathway. The CrWRKY1 promoter can drive the expression of a β-glucuronidase (GUS) reporter gene in native (C. roseus protoplasts and transgenic hairy roots) and heterologous (transgenic tobacco seedlings) systems. Analysis of 5'- or 3'-end deletions indicates that the sequence located between positions -140 to -93 bp and -3 to +113 bp, relative to the transcription start site, is critical for promoter activity. Mutation analysis shows that two overlapping as-1 elements and a CT-rich motif contribute significantly to promoter activity. The CrWRKY1 promoter is induced in response to methyl jasmonate (MJ) treatment and the promoter region between -230 and -93 bp contains a putative MJ-responsive element. The CrWRKY1 promoter can potentially be used as a tool to isolate novel TFs involved in the regulation of the TIA pathway. PMID:23979312

  10. Reverse saturable absorption and nonlinear refraction of ultrathin ZrS3 nanobelts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Jia-Jing; Tao, You-Rong; Wang, Jia-Nan; Wu, Zhong-Yu; Fan, Lei; Wu, Xing-Cai

    2016-05-01

    The nonlinear optical (NLO) properties of a ZrS3 nanobelt were measured with a 6.5 ns pulse laser at 532 nm. Its optical response to the incident light exhibits good optical absorptive and refractive effects, with the nonlinear absorption coefficient β = 4.42 × 10-10 m W-1 and the nonlinear refraction coefficient γ = 5.86 × 10-17 m2 W-1 for the ZrS3 nanobelt in ethanol dispersions at an input energy of 34.25 μJ. In addition, the β values and γ values have dependence on input energy. Results show that the ZrS3 nanobelts have an excellent reverse saturable absorption (RSA) performance in nanosecond pulses, demonstrating that ZrS3 nanobelts are an extraordinarily promising novel optical power limiting material. Meanwhile, compared to the pure ZrS3, graphene oxide (GO) and reduced graphene oxide (RGO), composites (ZrS3/GRO) exhibit an enhanced nonlinear absorption response at the same input energy.The nonlinear optical (NLO) properties of a ZrS3 nanobelt were measured with a 6.5 ns pulse laser at 532 nm. Its optical response to the incident light exhibits good optical absorptive and refractive effects, with the nonlinear absorption coefficient β = 4.42 × 10-10 m W-1 and the nonlinear refraction coefficient γ = 5.86 × 10-17 m2 W-1 for the ZrS3 nanobelt in ethanol dispersions at an input energy of 34.25 μJ. In addition, the β values and γ values have dependence on input energy. Results show that the ZrS3 nanobelts have an excellent reverse saturable absorption (RSA) performance in nanosecond pulses, demonstrating that ZrS3 nanobelts are an extraordinarily promising novel optical power limiting material. Meanwhile, compared to the pure ZrS3, graphene oxide (GO) and reduced graphene oxide (RGO), composites (ZrS3/GRO) exhibit an enhanced nonlinear absorption response at the same input energy. Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available. See DOI: 10.1039/c5nr09268j

  11. Combinatorial regulation modules on GmSBP2 promoter: a distal cis-regulatory domain confines the SBP2 promoter activity to the vascular tissue in vegetative organs.

    PubMed

    Waclawovsky, Alessandro J; Freitas, Rejane L; Rocha, Carolina S; Contim, Luis Antônio S; Fontes, Elizabeth P B

    2006-01-01

    The Glycine max sucrose binding protein (GmSBP2) promoter directs phloem-specific expression of reporter genes in transgenic tobacco. Here, we identified cis-regulatory domains (CRD) that contribute with positive and negative regulation for the tissue-specific pattern of the GmSPB2 promoter. Negative regulatory elements in the distal CRD-A (-2000 to -700) sequences suppressed expression from the GmSBP2 promoter in tissues other than seed tissues and vascular tissues of vegetative organs. Deletion of this region relieved repression resulting in a constitutive promoter highly active in all tissues analyzed. Further deletions from the strong constitutive -700GmSBP2 promoter delimited several intercalating enhancer-like and repressing domains that function in a context-dependent manner. Histochemical examination revealed that the CRD-C (-445 to -367) harbors both negative and positive elements. This region abolished promoter expression in roots and in all tissues of stems except for the inner phloem. In contrast, it restores root meristem expression when fused to the -132pSBP2-GUS construct, which contains root meristem expression-repressing determinants mapped to the 44-bp CRD-G (-136 to -92). Thus, the GmSBP2 promoter is functionally organized into a proximal region with the combinatorial modular configuration of plant promoters and a distal domain, which restricts gene expression to the vascular tissues in vegetative organs. PMID:16574256

  12. An ancient yet flexible cis-regulatory architecture allows localized Hedgehog tuning by patched/Ptch1

    PubMed Central

    Lorberbaum, David S; Ramos, Andrea I; Peterson, Kevin A; Carpenter, Brandon S; Parker, David S; De, Sandip; Hillers, Lauren E; Blake, Victoria M; Nishi, Yuichi; McFarlane, Matthew R; Chiang, Ason CY; Kassis, Judith A; Allen, Benjamin L; McMahon, Andrew P; Barolo, Scott

    2016-01-01

    The Hedgehog signaling pathway is part of the ancient developmental-evolutionary animal toolkit. Frequently co-opted to pattern new structures, the pathway is conserved among eumetazoans yet flexible and pleiotropic in its effects. The Hedgehog receptor, Patched, is transcriptionally activated by Hedgehog, providing essential negative feedback in all tissues. Our locus-wide dissections of the cis-regulatory landscapes of fly patched and mouse Ptch1 reveal abundant, diverse enhancers with stage- and tissue-specific expression patterns. The seemingly simple, constitutive Hedgehog response of patched/Ptch1 is driven by a complex regulatory architecture, with batteries of context-specific enhancers engaged in promoter-specific interactions to tune signaling individually in each tissue, without disturbing patterning elsewhere. This structure—one of the oldest cis-regulatory features discovered in animal genomes—explains how patched/Ptch1 can drive dramatic adaptations in animal morphology while maintaining its essential core function. It may also suggest a general model for the evolutionary flexibility of conserved regulators and pathways. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.13550.001 PMID:27146892

  13. A Hox Transcription Factor Collective Binds a Highly Conserved Distal-less cis-Regulatory Module to Generate Robust Transcriptional Outcomes

    PubMed Central

    Uhl, Juli D.; Zandvakili, Arya; Gebelein, Brian

    2016-01-01

    cis-regulatory modules (CRMs) generate precise expression patterns by integrating numerous transcription factors (TFs). Surprisingly, CRMs that control essential gene patterns can differ greatly in conservation, suggesting distinct constraints on TF binding sites. Here, we show that a highly conserved Distal-less regulatory element (DCRE) that controls gene expression in leg precursor cells recruits multiple Hox, Extradenticle (Exd) and Homothorax (Hth) complexes to mediate dual outputs: thoracic activation and abdominal repression. Using reporter assays, we found that abdominal repression is particularly robust, as neither individual binding site mutations nor a DNA binding deficient Hth protein abolished cooperative DNA binding and in vivo repression. Moreover, a re-engineered DCRE containing a distinct configuration of Hox, Exd, and Hth sites also mediated abdominal Hox repression. However, the re-engineered DCRE failed to perform additional segment-specific functions such as thoracic activation. These findings are consistent with two emerging concepts in gene regulation: First, the abdominal Hox/Exd/Hth factors utilize protein-protein and protein-DNA interactions to form repression complexes on flexible combinations of sites, consistent with the TF collective model of CRM organization. Second, the conserved DCRE mediates multiple cell-type specific outputs, consistent with recent findings that pleiotropic CRMs are associated with conserved TF binding and added evolutionary constraints. PMID:27058369

  14. A Hox Transcription Factor Collective Binds a Highly Conserved Distal-less cis-Regulatory Module to Generate Robust Transcriptional Outcomes.

    PubMed

    Uhl, Juli D; Zandvakili, Arya; Gebelein, Brian

    2016-04-01

    cis-regulatory modules (CRMs) generate precise expression patterns by integrating numerous transcription factors (TFs). Surprisingly, CRMs that control essential gene patterns can differ greatly in conservation, suggesting distinct constraints on TF binding sites. Here, we show that a highly conserved Distal-less regulatory element (DCRE) that controls gene expression in leg precursor cells recruits multiple Hox, Extradenticle (Exd) and Homothorax (Hth) complexes to mediate dual outputs: thoracic activation and abdominal repression. Using reporter assays, we found that abdominal repression is particularly robust, as neither individual binding site mutations nor a DNA binding deficient Hth protein abolished cooperative DNA binding and in vivo repression. Moreover, a re-engineered DCRE containing a distinct configuration of Hox, Exd, and Hth sites also mediated abdominal Hox repression. However, the re-engineered DCRE failed to perform additional segment-specific functions such as thoracic activation. These findings are consistent with two emerging concepts in gene regulation: First, the abdominal Hox/Exd/Hth factors utilize protein-protein and protein-DNA interactions to form repression complexes on flexible combinations of sites, consistent with the TF collective model of CRM organization. Second, the conserved DCRE mediates multiple cell-type specific outputs, consistent with recent findings that pleiotropic CRMs are associated with conserved TF binding and added evolutionary constraints. PMID:27058369

  15. Reverse saturable absorption and nonlinear refraction of ultrathin ZrS3 nanobelts.

    PubMed

    Wu, Jia-Jing; Tao, You-Rong; Wang, Jia-Nan; Wu, Zhong-Yu; Fan, Lei; Wu, Xing-Cai

    2016-05-21

    The nonlinear optical (NLO) properties of a ZrS3 nanobelt were measured with a 6.5 ns pulse laser at 532 nm. Its optical response to the incident light exhibits good optical absorptive and refractive effects, with the nonlinear absorption coefficient β = 4.42 × 10(-10) m W(-1) and the nonlinear refraction coefficient γ = 5.86 × 10(-17) m(2) W(-1) for the ZrS3 nanobelt in ethanol dispersions at an input energy of 34.25 μJ. In addition, the β values and γ values have dependence on input energy. Results show that the ZrS3 nanobelts have an excellent reverse saturable absorption (RSA) performance in nanosecond pulses, demonstrating that ZrS3 nanobelts are an extraordinarily promising novel optical power limiting material. Meanwhile, compared to the pure ZrS3, graphene oxide (GO) and reduced graphene oxide (RGO), composites (ZrS3/GRO) exhibit an enhanced nonlinear absorption response at the same input energy. PMID:27139247

  16. CisMiner: Genome-Wide In-Silico Cis-Regulatory Module Prediction by Fuzzy Itemset Mining

    PubMed Central

    Navarro, Carmen; Lopez, Francisco J.; Cano, Carlos; Garcia-Alcalde, Fernando; Blanco, Armando

    2014-01-01

    Eukaryotic gene control regions are known to be spread throughout non-coding DNA sequences which may appear distant from the gene promoter. Transcription factors are proteins that coordinately bind to these regions at transcription factor binding sites to regulate gene expression. Several tools allow to detect significant co-occurrences of closely located binding sites (cis-regulatory modules, CRMs). However, these tools present at least one of the following limitations: 1) scope limited to promoter or conserved regions of the genome; 2) do not allow to identify combinations involving more than two motifs; 3) require prior information about target motifs. In this work we present CisMiner, a novel methodology to detect putative CRMs by means of a fuzzy itemset mining approach able to operate at genome-wide scale. CisMiner allows to perform a blind search of CRMs without any prior information about target CRMs nor limitation in the number of motifs. CisMiner tackles the combinatorial complexity of genome-wide cis-regulatory module extraction using a natural representation of motif combinations as itemsets and applying the Top-Down Fuzzy Frequent- Pattern Tree algorithm to identify significant itemsets. Fuzzy technology allows CisMiner to better handle the imprecision and noise inherent to regulatory processes. Results obtained for a set of well-known binding sites in the S. cerevisiae genome show that our method yields highly reliable predictions. Furthermore, CisMiner was also applied to putative in-silico predicted transcription factor binding sites to identify significant combinations in S. cerevisiae and D. melanogaster, proving that our approach can be further applied genome-wide to more complex genomes. CisMiner is freely accesible at: http://genome2.ugr.es/cisminer. CisMiner can be queried for the results presented in this work and can also perform a customized cis-regulatory module prediction on a query set of transcription factor binding sites provided by

  17. Modular cis-regulatory organization of developmentally expressed genes: two genes transcribed territorially in the sea urchin embryo, and additional examples.

    PubMed Central

    Kirchhamer, C V; Yuh, C H; Davidson, E H

    1996-01-01

    The cis-regulatory systems that control developmental expression of two sea urchin genes have been subjected to detailed functional analysis. Both systems are modular in organization: specific, separable fragments of the cis-regulatory DNA each containing multiple transcription factor target sites execute particular regulatory subfunctions when associated with reporter genes and introduced into the embryo. The studies summarized here were carried out on the CyIIIa gene, expressed in the embryonic aboral ectoderm and on the Endo16 gene, expressed in the embryonic vegetal plate, archenteron, and then midgut. The regulatory systems of both genes include modules that control particular aspects of temporal and spatial expression, and in both the territorial boundaries of expression depend on a combination of negative and positive functions. In both genes different regulatory modules control early and late embryonic expression. Modular cis-regulatory organization is widespread in developmentally regulated genes, and we present a tabular summary that includes many examples from mouse and Drosophila. We regard cis-regulatory modules as units of developmental transcription control, and also of evolution, in the assembly of transcription control systems. Images Fig. 2 PMID:8790328

  18. Mapping cis-Regulatory Domains in the Human Genome UsingMulti-Species Conservation of Synteny

    SciTech Connect

    Ahituv, Nadav; Prabhakar, Shyam; Poulin, Francis; Rubin, EdwardM.; Couronne, Olivier

    2005-06-13

    Our inability to associate distant regulatory elements with the genes that they regulate has largely precluded their examination for sequence alterations contributing to human disease. One major obstacle is the large genomic space surrounding targeted genes in which such elements could potentially reside. In order to delineate gene regulatory boundaries we used whole-genome human-mouse-chicken (HMC) and human-mouse-frog (HMF) multiple alignments to compile conserved blocks of synteny (CBS), under the hypothesis that these blocks have been kept intact throughout evolution at least in part by the requirement of regulatory elements to stay linked to the genes that they regulate. A total of 2,116 and 1,942 CBS>200 kb were assembled for HMC and HMF respectively, encompassing 1.53 and 0.86 Gb of human sequence. To support the existence of complex long-range regulatory domains within these CBS we analyzed the prevalence and distribution of chromosomal aberrations leading to position effects (disruption of a genes regulatory environment), observing a clear bias not only for mapping onto CBS but also for longer CBS size. Our results provide a genome wide data set characterizing the regulatory domains of genes and the conserved regulatory elements within them.

  19. A phylogenetic Gibbs sampler that yields centroid solutions of cis-regulatory sites

    SciTech Connect

    Newberg, Lee A.; Thompson, William A.; Conlan, Sean; Smith, Thomas M.; McCue, Lee Ann; Lawrence, Charles E.

    2007-07-15

    Identification of functionally conserved regulatory elements in sequence data from closely related organisms is becoming feasible, due to the rapid growth of public sequence databases. Closely related organisms are most likely to have common regulatory motifs, however the recent speciation of such organisms results in the high degree of correlation in their genome sequences, confounding the detection of functional elements. Additionally, alignment algorithms that use optimization techniques are limited to the detection of a single alignment that may not be representative. Comparative-genomics studies must be able to address the phylogenetic correlation in the data and efficiently explore the alignment space, in order to make specific and biologically relevant predictions. Results: We describe here a Gibbs sampler that employs a full phylogenetic model and reports an ensemble centroid solution. We describe regulatory motif detection using both simulated and real data, and demonstrate that this approach achieves improved specificity, sensitivity, and positive predictive value over non-phylogenetic algorithms, and over phylogenetic algorithms that report a maximum likelihood solution.

  20. Cis-regulatory programs in the development and evolution of vertebrate paired appendages.

    PubMed

    Gehrke, Andrew R; Shubin, Neil H

    2016-09-01

    Differential gene expression is the core of development, mediating the genetic changes necessary for determining cell identity. The regulation of gene activity by cis-acting elements (e.g., enhancers) is a crucial mechanism for determining differential gene activity by precise control of gene expression in embryonic space and time. Modifications to regulatory regions can have profound impacts on phenotype, and therefore developmental and evolutionary biologists have increasingly focused on elucidating the transcriptional control of genes that build and pattern body plans. Here, we trace the evolutionary history of transcriptional control of three loci key to vertebrate appendage development (Fgf8, Shh, and HoxD/A). Within and across these regulatory modules, we find both complex and flexible regulation in contrast with more fixed enhancers that appear unchanged over vast timescales of vertebrate evolution. The transcriptional control of vertebrate appendage development was likely already incredibly complex in the common ancestor of fish, implying that subtle changes to regulatory networks were more likely responsible for alterations in phenotype rather than the de novo addition of whole regulatory domains. Finally, we discuss the dangers of relying on inter-species transgenesis when testing enhancer function, and call for more controlled regulatory swap experiments when inferring the evolutionary history of enhancer elements. PMID:26783722

  1. Cis-regulatory Changes at FLOWERING LOCUS T Mediate Natural Variation in Flowering Responses of Arabidopsis thaliana

    PubMed Central

    Schwartz, Christopher; Balasubramanian, Sureshkumar; Warthmann, Norman; Michael, Todd P.; Lempe, Janne; Sureshkumar, Sridevi; Kobayashi, Yasushi; Maloof, Julin N.; Borevitz, Justin O.; Chory, Joanne; Weigel, Detlef

    2009-01-01

    Flowering time, a critical adaptive trait, is modulated by several environmental cues. These external signals converge on a small set of genes that in turn mediate the flowering response. Mutant analysis and subsequent molecular studies have revealed that one of these integrator genes, FLOWERING LOCUS T (FT), responds to photoperiod and temperature cues, two environmental parameters that greatly influence flowering time. As the central player in the transition to flowering, the protein coding sequence of FT and its function are highly conserved across species. Using QTL mapping with a new advanced intercross-recombinant inbred line (AI-RIL) population, we show that a QTL tightly linked to FT contributes to natural variation in the flowering response to the combined effects of photoperiod and ambient temperature. Using heterogeneous inbred families (HIF) and introgression lines, we fine map the QTL to a 6.7 kb fragment in the FT promoter. We confirm by quantitative complementation that FT has differential activity in the two parental strains. Further support for FT underlying the QTL comes from a new approach, quantitative knockdown with artificial microRNAs (amiRNAs). Consistent with the causal sequence polymorphism being in the promoter, we find that the QTL affects FT expression. Taken together, these results indicate that allelic variation at pathway integrator genes such as FT can underlie phenotypic variability and that this may be achieved through cis-regulatory changes. PMID:19652183

  2. Comparative epigenomics in distantly related teleost species identifies conserved cis-regulatory nodes active during the vertebrate phylotypic period

    PubMed Central

    Tena, Juan J.; González-Aguilera, Cristina; Fernández-Miñán, Ana; Vázquez-Marín, Javier; Parra-Acero, Helena; Cross, Joe W.; Rigby, Peter W.J.; Carvajal, Jaime J.; Wittbrodt, Joachim; Gómez-Skarmeta, José L.; Martínez-Morales, Juan R.

    2014-01-01

    The complex relationship between ontogeny and phylogeny has been the subject of attention and controversy since von Baer’s formulations in the 19th century. The classic concept that embryogenesis progresses from clade general features to species-specific characters has often been revisited. It has become accepted that embryos from a clade show maximum morphological similarity at the so-called phylotypic period (i.e., during mid-embryogenesis). According to the hourglass model, body plan conservation would depend on constrained molecular mechanisms operating at this period. More recently, comparative transcriptomic analyses have provided conclusive evidence that such molecular constraints exist. Examining cis-regulatory architecture during the phylotypic period is essential to understand the evolutionary source of body plan stability. Here we compare transcriptomes and key epigenetic marks (H3K4me3 and H3K27ac) from medaka (Oryzias latipes) and zebrafish (Danio rerio), two distantly related teleosts separated by an evolutionary distance of 115–200 Myr. We show that comparison of transcriptome profiles correlates with anatomical similarities and heterochronies observed at the phylotypic stage. Through comparative epigenomics, we uncover a pool of conserved regulatory regions (≈700), which are active during the vertebrate phylotypic period in both species. Moreover, we show that their neighboring genes encode mainly transcription factors with fundamental roles in tissue specification. We postulate that these regulatory regions, active in both teleost genomes, represent key constrained nodes of the gene networks that sustain the vertebrate body plan. PMID:24709821

  3. Evolving New Skeletal Traits by cis-Regulatory Changes in Bone Morphogenetic Proteins.

    PubMed

    Indjeian, Vahan B; Kingman, Garrett A; Jones, Felicity C; Guenther, Catherine A; Grimwood, Jane; Schmutz, Jeremy; Myers, Richard M; Kingsley, David M

    2016-01-14

    Changes in bone size and shape are defining features of many vertebrates. Here we use genetic crosses and comparative genomics to identify specific regulatory DNA alterations controlling skeletal evolution. Armor bone-size differences in sticklebacks map to a major effect locus overlapping BMP family member GDF6. Freshwater fish express more GDF6 due in part to a transposon insertion, and transgenic overexpression of GDF6 phenocopies evolutionary changes in armor-plate size. The human GDF6 locus also has undergone distinctive regulatory evolution, including complete loss of an enhancer that is otherwise highly conserved between chimps and other mammals. Functional tests show that the ancestral enhancer drives expression in hindlimbs but not forelimbs, in locations that have been specifically modified during the human transition to bipedalism. Both gain and loss of regulatory elements can localize BMP changes to specific anatomical locations, providing a flexible regulatory basis for evolving species-specific changes in skeletal form. PMID:26774823

  4. Long-range evolutionary constraints reveal cis-regulatory interactions on the human X chromosome

    PubMed Central

    Naville, Magali; Ishibashi, Minaka; Ferg, Marco; Bengani, Hemant; Rinkwitz, Silke; Krecsmarik, Monika; Hawkins, Thomas A.; Wilson, Stephen W.; Manning, Elizabeth; Chilamakuri, Chandra S. R.; Wilson, David I.; Louis, Alexandra; Lucy Raymond, F.; Rastegar, Sepand; Strähle, Uwe; Lenhard, Boris; Bally-Cuif, Laure; van Heyningen, Veronica; FitzPatrick, David R.; Becker, Thomas S.; Roest Crollius, Hugues

    2015-01-01

    Enhancers can regulate the transcription of genes over long genomic distances. This is thought to lead to selection against genomic rearrangements within such regions that may disrupt this functional linkage. Here we test this concept experimentally using the human X chromosome. We describe a scoring method to identify evolutionary maintenance of linkage between conserved noncoding elements and neighbouring genes. Chromatin marks associated with enhancer function are strongly correlated with this linkage score. We test >1,000 putative enhancers by transgenesis assays in zebrafish to ascertain the identity of the target gene. The majority of active enhancers drive a transgenic expression in a pattern consistent with the known expression of a linked gene. These results show that evolutionary maintenance of linkage is a reliable predictor of an enhancer's function, and provide new information to discover the genetic basis of diseases caused by the mis-regulation of gene expression. PMID:25908307

  5. Simple combinations of lineage-determining transcription factors prime cis-regulatory elements required for macrophage and B cell identities

    PubMed Central

    Heinz, Sven; Benner, Christopher; Spann, Nathanael; Bertolino, Eric; Lin, Yin C.; Laslo, Peter; Cheng, Jason X.; Murre, Cornelis; Singh, Harinder; Glass, Christopher K.

    2010-01-01

    Summary Genome-scale studies have revealed extensive, cell type-specific co-localization of transcription factors, but the mechanisms underlying this phenomenon remain poorly understood. Here we demonstrate in macrophages and B cells that collaborative interactions of the common factor PU.1 with small sets of macrophage- or B celllineage-determining transcription factors establish cell-specific binding sites that are associated with the majority of promoter-distal H3K4me1-marked genomic regions. PU.1 binding initiates nucleosome remodeling followed by H3K4 monomethylation at large numbers of genomic regions associated with both broadly and specifically expressed genes. These locations serve as beacons for additional factors, exemplified by liver X receptors, which drive both cell-specific gene expression and signal-dependent responses. Together with analyses of transcription factor binding and H3K4me1 patterns in other cell types, these studies suggest that simple combinations of lineage-determining transcription factors can specify the genomic sites ultimately responsible for both cell identity and cell type-specific responses to diverse signaling inputs. PMID:20513432

  6. Precise cis-regulatory control of spatial and temporal expression of the alx-1 gene in the skeletogenic lineage of s. purpuratus.

    PubMed

    Damle, Sagar; Davidson, Eric H

    2011-09-15

    Deployment of the gene-regulatory network (GRN) responsible for skeletogenesis in the embryo of the sea urchin Strongylocentrotus purpuratus is restricted to the large micromere lineage by a double negative regulatory gate. The gate consists of a GRN subcircuit composed of the pmar1 and hesC genes, which encode repressors and are wired in tandem, plus a set of target regulatory genes under hesC control. The skeletogenic cell state is specified initially by micromere-specific expression of these regulatory genes, viz. alx1, ets1, tbrain and tel, plus the gene encoding the Notch ligand Delta. Here we use a recently developed high throughput methodology for experimental cis-regulatory analysis to elucidate the genomic regulatory system controlling alx1 expression in time and embryonic space. The results entirely confirm the double negative gate control system at the cis-regulatory level, including definition of the functional HesC target sites, and add the crucial new information that the drivers of alx1 expression are initially Ets1, and then Alx1 itself plus Ets1. Cis-regulatory analysis demonstrates that these inputs quantitatively account for the magnitude of alx1 expression. Furthermore, the Alx1 gene product not only performs an auto-regulatory role, promoting a fast rise in alx1 expression, but also, when at high levels, it behaves as an auto-repressor. A synthetic experiment indicates that this behavior is probably due to dimerization. In summary, the results we report provide the sequence level basis for control of alx1 spatial expression by the double negative gate GRN architecture, and explain the rising, then falling temporal expression profile of the alx1 gene in terms of its auto-regulatory genetic wiring. PMID:21723273

  7. Precise cis-regulatory control of spatial and temporal expression of the alx-1 gene in the skeletogenic lineage of s. purpuratus

    PubMed Central

    Damle, Sagar; Davidson, Eric H.

    2011-01-01

    Deployment of the gene regulatory network (GRN) responsible for skeletogenesis in the embryo of the sea urchin Strongylocentrotus purpuratus is restricted to the large micromere lineage by a double negative regulatory gate. The gate consists of a GRN subcircuit composed of the pmar1 and hesC genes, which encode repressors and are wired in tandem, plus a set of target regulatory genes under hesC control. The skeletogenic cell state is specified initially by micromere-specific expression of these regulatory genes, viz. alx1, ets1, tbrain and tel, plus the gene encoding the Notch ligand Delta. Here we use a recently developed high throughput methodology for experimental cis-regulatory analysis to elucidate the genomic regulatory system controlling alx1 expression in time and embryonic space. The results entirely confirm the double negative gate control system at the cis-regulatory level, including definition of the functional HesC target sites, and add the crucial new information that the drivers of alx1 expression are initially Ets1, and then Alx1 itself plus Ets1. Cis-regulatory analysis demonstrates that these inputs quantitatively account for the magnitude of alx1 expression. Furthermore, the Alx1 gene product not only performs an auto-regulatory role, promoting a fast rise in alx1 expression, but also, when at high levels, it behaves as an autorepressor. A synthetic experiment indicates that this behavior is probably due to dimerization. In summary, the results we report provide the sequence level basis for control of alx1 spatial expression by the double negative gate GRN architecture, and explain the rising, then falling temporal expression profile of the alx1 gene in terms of its auto-regulatory genetic wiring. PMID:21723273

  8. RNA-ID, a highly sensitive and robust method to identify cis-regulatory sequences using superfolder GFP and a fluorescence-based assay

    PubMed Central

    Dean, Kimberly M.; Grayhack, Elizabeth J.

    2012-01-01

    We have developed a robust and sensitive method, called RNA-ID, to screen for cis-regulatory sequences in RNA using fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS) of yeast cells bearing a reporter in which expression of both superfolder green fluorescent protein (GFP) and yeast codon-optimized mCherry red fluorescent protein (RFP) is driven by the bidirectional GAL1,10 promoter. This method recapitulates previously reported progressive inhibition of translation mediated by increasing numbers of CGA codon pairs, and restoration of expression by introduction of a tRNA with an anticodon that base pairs exactly with the CGA codon. This method also reproduces effects of paromomycin and context on stop codon read-through. Five key features of this method contribute to its effectiveness as a selection for regulatory sequences: The system exhibits greater than a 250-fold dynamic range, a quantitative and dose-dependent response to known inhibitory sequences, exquisite resolution that allows nearly complete physical separation of distinct populations, and a reproducible signal between different cells transformed with the identical reporter, all of which are coupled with simple methods involving ligation-independent cloning, to create large libraries. Moreover, we provide evidence that there are sequences within a 9-nt library that cause reduced GFP fluorescence, suggesting that there are novel cis-regulatory sequences to be found even in this short sequence space. This method is widely applicable to the study of both RNA-mediated and codon-mediated effects on expression. PMID:23097427

  9. A cis-regulatory sequence from a short intergenic region gives rise to a strong microbe-associated molecular pattern-responsive synthetic promoter.

    PubMed

    Lehmeyer, Mona; Hanko, Erik K R; Roling, Lena; Gonzalez, Lilian; Wehrs, Maren; Hehl, Reinhard

    2016-06-01

    The high gene density in Arabidopsis thaliana leaves only relatively short intergenic regions for potential cis-regulatory sequences. To learn more about the regulation of genes harbouring only very short upstream intergenic regions, this study investigates a recently identified novel microbe-associated molecular pattern (MAMP)-responsive cis-sequence located within the 101 bp long intergenic region upstream of the At1g13990 gene. It is shown that the cis-regulatory sequence is sufficient for MAMP-responsive reporter gene activity in the context of its native promoter. The 3' UTR of the upstream gene has a quantitative effect on gene expression. In context of a synthetic promoter, the cis-sequence is shown to achieve a strong increase in reporter gene activity as a monomer, dimer and tetramer. Mutation analysis of the cis-sequence determined the specific nucleotides required for gene expression activation. In transgenic A. thaliana the synthetic promoter harbouring a tetramer of the cis-sequence not only drives strong pathogen-responsive reporter gene expression but also shows a high background activity. The results of this study contribute to our understanding how genes with very short upstream intergenic regions are regulated and how these regions can serve as a source for MAMP-responsive cis-sequences for synthetic promoter design. PMID:26833485

  10. 'In silico expression analysis', a novel PathoPlant web tool to identify abiotic and biotic stress conditions associated with specific cis-regulatory sequences.

    PubMed

    Bolívar, Julio C; Machens, Fabian; Brill, Yuri; Romanov, Artyom; Bülow, Lorenz; Hehl, Reinhard

    2014-01-01

    Using bioinformatics, putative cis-regulatory sequences can be easily identified using pattern recognition programs on promoters of specific gene sets. The abundance of predicted cis-sequences is a major challenge to associate these sequences with a possible function in gene expression regulation. To identify a possible function of the predicted cis-sequences, a novel web tool designated 'in silico expression analysis' was developed that correlates submitted cis-sequences with gene expression data from Arabidopsis thaliana. The web tool identifies the A. thaliana genes harbouring the sequence in a defined promoter region and compares the expression of these genes with microarray data. The result is a hierarchy of abiotic and biotic stress conditions to which these genes are most likely responsive. When testing the performance of the web tool, known cis-regulatory sequences were submitted to the 'in silico expression analysis' resulting in the correct identification of the associated stress conditions. When using a recently identified novel elicitor-responsive sequence, a WT-box (CGACTTTT), the 'in silico expression analysis' predicts that genes harbouring this sequence in their promoter are most likely Botrytis cinerea induced. Consistent with this prediction, the strongest induction of a reporter gene harbouring this sequence in the promoter is observed with B. cinerea in transgenic A. thaliana. DATABASE URL: http://www.pathoplant.de/expression_analysis.php. PMID:24727366

  11. ‘In silico expression analysis’, a novel PathoPlant web tool to identify abiotic and biotic stress conditions associated with specific cis-regulatory sequences

    PubMed Central

    Machens, Fabian; Brill, Yuri; Romanov, Artyom; Bülow, Lorenz; Hehl, Reinhard

    2014-01-01

    Using bioinformatics, putative cis-regulatory sequences can be easily identified using pattern recognition programs on promoters of specific gene sets. The abundance of predicted cis-sequences is a major challenge to associate these sequences with a possible function in gene expression regulation. To identify a possible function of the predicted cis-sequences, a novel web tool designated ‘in silico expression analysis’ was developed that correlates submitted cis-sequences with gene expression data from Arabidopsis thaliana. The web tool identifies the A. thaliana genes harbouring the sequence in a defined promoter region and compares the expression of these genes with microarray data. The result is a hierarchy of abiotic and biotic stress conditions to which these genes are most likely responsive. When testing the performance of the web tool, known cis-regulatory sequences were submitted to the ‘in silico expression analysis’ resulting in the correct identification of the associated stress conditions. When using a recently identified novel elicitor-responsive sequence, a WT-box (CGACTTTT), the ‘in silico expression analysis’ predicts that genes harbouring this sequence in their promoter are most likely Botrytis cinerea induced. Consistent with this prediction, the strongest induction of a reporter gene harbouring this sequence in the promoter is observed with B. cinerea in transgenic A. thaliana. Database URL: http://www.pathoplant.de/expression_analysis.php. PMID:24727366

  12. The cis-regulatory system of the tbrain gene: alternative use of multiple modules to promote skeletogenic expression in the sea urchin embryo

    PubMed Central

    Wahl, Mary E.; Hahn, Julie; Gora, Kasia; Davidson, Eric H.; Oliveri, Paola

    2009-01-01

    The genomic cis-regulatory systems controlling regulatory gene expression usually include multiple modules. The regulatory output of such systems at any given time depends on which module is directing the function of the basal transcription apparatus, and ultimately on the transcription factor inputs into that module. Here we examine regulation of the S. purpuratus tbrain gene, a required activator of the skeletogenic specification state in the lineage descendant from the embryo micromeres. Alternate cis-regulatory modules were found to convey skeletogenic expression in reporter constructs. To determine their relative developmental functions in context, we made use of recombineered BAC constructs containing a GFP reporter, and of derivatives from which specific modules had been deleted. The outputs of the various constructs were observed spatially by GFP fluorescence and quantitatively over time by QPCR. In the context of the complete genomic locus, early skeletogenic expression is controlled by an intron enhancer plus a proximal region containing a HesC site as predicted from network analysis. From ingression onward, however, a dedicated distal module utilizing positive Ets1/2 inputs contributes to definitive expression in the skeletogenic mesenchyme. This module also mediates a newly-discovered negative Erg input which excludes non-skeletogenic mesodermal expression. PMID:19679118

  13. Characterization of the human lipoprotein lipase (LPL) promoter: Evidence of two cis-regulatory regions, LP-[alpha] and LP-[beta] of importance for the differentation-linked induction of the LPL gene during adipogenesis

    SciTech Connect

    Enerbaeck, S.; Ohlsson, B.G.; Samuelsson, L.; Bjursell, G. )

    1992-10-01

    When preadipocytes differentiate into adipocytes, several differentiation-linked genes are activated. Lipo-protein lipase (LPL) is one of the first genes induced during this process. To investigate early events in adipocyte development, we have focused on the transcriptional activation of the LPL gene. For this purpose, we have cloned and fused different parts of intragenic and flanking sequences with a chloramphenicol acetyltransferase reporter gene. Transient transfection experiments and DNase I hypersensitivity assays indicate that several positive as well as negative elements contribute to transcriptional regulation of the LPL gene. When reporter gene constructs were stably introduced into preadipocytes, we were able to monitor and compare the activation patterns of different promoter deletion mutants at selected time points representing the process of adipocyte development. We could delimit two cis-regulatory elements important for gradual activation of the LPL gene during adipocyte development in vitro. These elements, LP-[alpha] (-702 to -666) and LP-[beta] (-468 to -430), contain a striking similarity to a consensus sequence known to bind the transcription factors HNF-3 and fork head. Results of gel mobility shift assays and DNase I and exonuclease III in vitro protection assays indicate that factors with DNA-binding properties similar to those of the HNF-3/fork head family of transcription factors are present in adipocytes and interact with LP-[alpha] and LP-[beta]. We also demonstrate that LP-[alpha] and LP-[beta] were both capable of conferring a differentiation-linked expression pattern to a heterolog promoter, thus mimicking the expression of the endogenous LPL gene during adipocyte differentiation. These findings indicate that interactions with LP-[alpha] and LP-[beta] could be a part of a differentiation switch governing induction of the LPL gene during adipocyte differentiation. 48 refs., 11 figs.

  14. Characterization and application of a novel bioemulsifier in crude oil degradation by Acinetobacter beijerinckii ZRS.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Yi-He; Chen, Li-Yuan; Tian, Zi-Jing; Sun, Yue; Liu, Jin-Biao; Huang, Lei

    2016-02-01

    Bioemulsifiers can be applicated in a variety of areas such as bioremediation and microbial-enhanced oil recovery. The present study was aimed at bioemulsifier production, optimization, stability studies, and applications of the bioemulsifier produced by one of these strains, Acinetobacter beijerinckii ZRS. When Acinetobacter beijerinckii ZRS is cultured with hexadecane as a carbon source, it produces a novel extracellular emulsifying agent that does not cause remarkable reductions in surface tension. In order to enhance bioemulsifier production, response surface methodology was applied to optimize the culture medium. The bioemulsifier was subjected to thin-layer chromatography, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), gel filtration chromatography, matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization-time of flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF), and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), which allowed for the identification of a novel polymeric bioemulsifier. The bioemulsifier retained its properties at a wide range of pH values, high temperatures and high salinities (up to 5% [w⁄v] Na(+) and 24% Ca(2+)). To deduce the role of this bioemulsifier in a coastal zone oil spill, the propagation of oil-degrading bacteria on oil-coated grains of gravel immersed in seawater was investigated in beach-simulating tanks. The bioemulsifier played a positive role in the degradation of these hydrocarbons and increasing the light crude oil degradation rate of the bacterial strain from 37.5 to 58.3% within 56 days. Therefore, this bioemulsifier shows strong potential to be used for bioremediation of oil pollution in marine environments. PMID:26576943

  15. Microduplications encompassing the Sonic hedgehog limb enhancer ZRS are associated with Haas-type polysyndactyly and Laurin-Sandrow syndrome.

    PubMed

    Lohan, S; Spielmann, M; Doelken, S C; Flöttmann, R; Muhammad, F; Baig, S M; Wajid, M; Hülsemann, W; Habenicht, R; Kjaer, K W; Patil, S J; Girisha, K M; Abarca-Barriga, H H; Mundlos, S; Klopocki, E

    2014-10-01

    Laurin-Sandrow syndrome (LSS) is a rare autosomal dominant disorder characterized by polysyndactyly of hands and/or feet, mirror image duplication of the feet, nasal defects, and loss of identity between fibula and tibia. The genetic basis of LSS is currently unknown. LSS shows phenotypic overlap with Haas-type polysyndactyly (HTS) regarding the digital phenotype. Here we report on five unrelated families with overlapping microduplications encompassing the Sonic hedgehog (SHH) limb enhancer ZPA regulatory sequence (ZRS) on chromosome 7q36. Clinically, the patients show polysyndactyly phenotypes and various types of lower limb malformations ranging from syndactyly to mirror image polydactyly with duplications of the fibulae. We show that larger duplications of the ZRS region (>80 kb) are associated with HTS, whereas smaller duplications (<80 kb) result in the LSS phenotype. On the basis of our data, the latter can be clearly distinguished from HTS by the presence of mirror image polysyndactyly of the feet with duplication of the fibula. Our results expand the clinical phenotype of the ZRS-associated syndromes and suggest that smaller duplications (<80 kb) are associated with a more severe phenotype. In addition, we show that these small microduplications within the ZRS region are the underlying genetic cause of Laurin-Sandrow syndrome. PMID:24456159

  16. Genome-wide identification of enhancer elements.

    PubMed

    Tulin, Sarah; Barsi, Julius C; Bocconcelli, Carlo; Smith, Joel

    2016-01-01

    We present a prospective genome-wide regulatory element database for the sea urchin embryo and the modified chromosome capture-related methodology used to create it. The method we developed is termed GRIP-seq for genome-wide regulatory element immunoprecipitation and combines features of chromosome conformation capture, chromatin immunoprecipitation, and paired-end next-generation sequencing with molecular steps that enrich for active cis-regulatory elements associated with basal transcriptional machinery. The first GRIP-seq database, available to the community, comes from S. purpuratus 24 hpf embryos and takes advantage of the extremely well-characterized cis-regulatory elements in this system for validation. In addition, using the GRIP-seq database, we identify and experimentally validate a novel, intronic cis-regulatory element at the onecut locus. We find GRIP-seq signal sensitively identifies active cis-regulatory elements with a high signal-to-noise ratio for both distal and intronic elements. This promising GRIP-seq protocol has the potential to address a rate-limiting step in resolving comprehensive, predictive network models in all systems. PMID:27389984

  17. Autosomal recessive retinitis pigmentosa with homozygous rhodopsin mutation E150K and non-coding cis-regulatory variants in CRX-binding regions of SAMD7

    PubMed Central

    Van Schil, Kristof; Karlstetter, Marcus; Aslanidis, Alexander; Dannhausen, Katharina; Azam, Maleeha; Qamar, Raheel; Leroy, Bart P.; Depasse, Fanny; Langmann, Thomas; De Baere, Elfride

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to unravel the molecular pathogenesis of an unusual retinitis pigmentosa (RP) phenotype observed in a Turkish consanguineous family. Homozygosity mapping revealed two candidate genes, SAMD7 and RHO. A homozygous RHO mutation c.448G > A, p.E150K was found in two affected siblings, while no coding SAMD7 mutations were identified. Interestingly, four non-coding homozygous variants were found in two SAMD7 genomic regions relevant for binding of the retinal transcription factor CRX (CRX-bound regions, CBRs) in these affected siblings. Three variants are located in a promoter CBR termed CBR1, while the fourth is located more downstream in CBR2. Transcriptional activity of these variants was assessed by luciferase assays and electroporation of mouse retinal explants with reporter constructs of wild-type and variant SAMD7 CBRs. The combined CBR2/CBR1 variant construct showed significantly decreased SAMD7 reporter activity compared to the wild-type sequence, suggesting a cis-regulatory effect on SAMD7 expression. As Samd7 is a recently identified Crx-regulated transcriptional repressor in retina, we hypothesize that these SAMD7 variants might contribute to the retinal phenotype observed here, characterized by unusual, recognizable pigment deposits, differing from the classic spicular intraretinal pigmentation observed in other individuals homozygous for p.E150K, and typically associated with RP in general. PMID:26887858

  18. The lncRNA Malat1 is dispensable for mouse development but its transcription plays a cis-regulatory role in the adult

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Bin; Arun, Gayatri; Mao, Yuntao S.; Lazar, Zsolt; Hung, Gene; Bhattacharjee, Gourab; Xiao, Xiaokun; Booth, Carmen J.; Wu, Jie; Zhang, Chaolin; Spector, David L.

    2012-01-01

    SUMMARY Genome-wide studies have identified thousands of long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) lacking protein coding capacity. However, most lncRNAs are expressed at a very low level, and in most cases there is no genetic evidence to support their in vivo function. Malat1 (metastasis associated lung adenocarcinoma transcript 1) is among the most abundant and highly conserved lncRNAs, and it exhibits an uncommon 3′-end processing mechanism. In addition, its specific nuclear localization, developmental regulation, and dysregulation in cancer are suggestive of it having a critical biological function. We have characterized a Malat1 loss-of-function genetic model that indicates Malat1 is not essential for mouse pre- and post-natal development. Furthermore, depletion of Malat1 does not impact global gene expression, splicing factor level and phosphorylation status, or alternative pre-mRNA splicing. However, among a small number of genes that were dysregulated in adult Malat1 knockout mice, many were Malat1 neighboring genes, thus indicating a potential cis regulatory role of Malat1 gene transcription. PMID:22840402

  19. A cis-Regulatory Mutation in Troponin-I of Drosophila Reveals the Importance of Proper Stoichiometry of Structural Proteins During Muscle Assembly

    PubMed Central

    Firdaus, Hena; Mohan, Jayaram; Naz, Sarwat; Arathi, Prabhashankar; Ramesh, Saraf R.; Nongthomba, Upendra

    2015-01-01

    Rapid and high wing-beat frequencies achieved during insect flight are powered by the indirect flight muscles, the largest group of muscles present in the thorax. Any anomaly during the assembly and/or structural impairment of the indirect flight muscles gives rise to a flightless phenotype. Multiple mutagenesis screens in Drosophila melanogaster for defective flight behavior have led to the isolation and characterization of mutations that have been instrumental in the identification of many proteins and residues that are important for muscle assembly, function, and disease. In this article, we present a molecular-genetic characterization of a flightless mutation, flightless-H (fliH), originally designated as heldup-a (hdp-a). We show that fliH is a cis-regulatory mutation of the wings up A (wupA) gene, which codes for the troponin-I protein, one of the troponin complex proteins, involved in regulation of muscle contraction. The mutation leads to reduced levels of troponin-I transcript and protein. In addition to this, there is also coordinated reduction in transcript and protein levels of other structural protein isoforms that are part of the troponin complex. The altered transcript and protein stoichiometry ultimately culminates in unregulated acto-myosin interactions and a hypercontraction muscle phenotype. Our results shed new insights into the importance of maintaining the stoichiometry of structural proteins during muscle assembly for proper function with implications for the identification of mutations and disease phenotypes in other species, including humans. PMID:25747460

  20. Sex Chromosome-wide Transcriptional Suppression and Compensatory Cis-Regulatory Evolution Mediate Gene Expression in the Drosophila Male Germline.

    PubMed

    Landeen, Emily L; Muirhead, Christina A; Wright, Lori; Meiklejohn, Colin D; Presgraves, Daven C

    2016-07-01

    The evolution of heteromorphic sex chromosomes has repeatedly resulted in the evolution of sex chromosome-specific forms of regulation, including sex chromosome dosage compensation in the soma and meiotic sex chromosome inactivation in the germline. In the male germline of Drosophila melanogaster, a novel but poorly understood form of sex chromosome-specific transcriptional regulation occurs that is distinct from canonical sex chromosome dosage compensation or meiotic inactivation. Previous work shows that expression of reporter genes driven by testis-specific promoters is considerably lower-approximately 3-fold or more-for transgenes inserted into X chromosome versus autosome locations. Here we characterize this transcriptional suppression of X-linked genes in the male germline and its evolutionary consequences. Using transgenes and transpositions, we show that most endogenous X-linked genes, not just testis-specific ones, are transcriptionally suppressed several-fold specifically in the Drosophila male germline. In wild-type testes, this sex chromosome-wide transcriptional suppression is generally undetectable, being effectively compensated by the gene-by-gene evolutionary recruitment of strong promoters on the X chromosome. We identify and experimentally validate a promoter element sequence motif that is enriched upstream of the transcription start sites of hundreds of testis-expressed genes; evolutionarily conserved across species; associated with strong gene expression levels in testes; and overrepresented on the X chromosome. These findings show that the expression of X-linked genes in the Drosophila testes reflects a balance between chromosome-wide epigenetic transcriptional suppression and long-term compensatory adaptation by sex-linked genes. Our results have broad implications for the evolution of gene expression in the Drosophila male germline and for genome evolution. PMID:27404402

  1. Sex Chromosome-wide Transcriptional Suppression and Compensatory Cis-Regulatory Evolution Mediate Gene Expression in the Drosophila Male Germline

    PubMed Central

    Landeen, Emily L.; Muirhead, Christina A.; Meiklejohn, Colin D.; Presgraves, Daven C.

    2016-01-01

    The evolution of heteromorphic sex chromosomes has repeatedly resulted in the evolution of sex chromosome-specific forms of regulation, including sex chromosome dosage compensation in the soma and meiotic sex chromosome inactivation in the germline. In the male germline of Drosophila melanogaster, a novel but poorly understood form of sex chromosome-specific transcriptional regulation occurs that is distinct from canonical sex chromosome dosage compensation or meiotic inactivation. Previous work shows that expression of reporter genes driven by testis-specific promoters is considerably lower—approximately 3-fold or more—for transgenes inserted into X chromosome versus autosome locations. Here we characterize this transcriptional suppression of X-linked genes in the male germline and its evolutionary consequences. Using transgenes and transpositions, we show that most endogenous X-linked genes, not just testis-specific ones, are transcriptionally suppressed several-fold specifically in the Drosophila male germline. In wild-type testes, this sex chromosome-wide transcriptional suppression is generally undetectable, being effectively compensated by the gene-by-gene evolutionary recruitment of strong promoters on the X chromosome. We identify and experimentally validate a promoter element sequence motif that is enriched upstream of the transcription start sites of hundreds of testis-expressed genes; evolutionarily conserved across species; associated with strong gene expression levels in testes; and overrepresented on the X chromosome. These findings show that the expression of X-linked genes in the Drosophila testes reflects a balance between chromosome-wide epigenetic transcriptional suppression and long-term compensatory adaptation by sex-linked genes. Our results have broad implications for the evolution of gene expression in the Drosophila male germline and for genome evolution. PMID:27404402

  2. Mass transport and crystal growth of the mixed ZrS2-ZrSe2 system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wiedemeier, Heribert; Goldman, Howard

    1986-01-01

    The solid solubility of the ZrS2-ZrSe2 system was reinvestigated by annealing techniques to establish the relationship between composition and lattice parameters. Mixed crystals of ZrS(2x)Se2(1-x) for selected compositions of the source material were grown by chemical vapor transport and characterized by X-ray diffraction and microscopic methods. The mass transport rates and crystal growth of ZrSSe were investigated and compared with those of other compositions. The mass fluxes of the mixed system showed an increase with increasing selenium content. The transport products were richer in ZrSe2 than the residual source materials when the ZrSe2 content of the starting materials was greater than 50 mol.-pct. The mass transport rates revealed an increasing mass flux with pressure.

  3. Exact p-value calculation for heterotypic clusters of regulatory motifs and its application in computational annotation of cis-regulatory modules

    PubMed Central

    Boeva, Valentina; Clément, Julien; Régnier, Mireille; Roytberg, Mikhail A; Makeev, Vsevolod J

    2007-01-01

    Background cis-Regulatory modules (CRMs) of eukaryotic genes often contain multiple binding sites for transcription factors. The phenomenon that binding sites form clusters in CRMs is exploited in many algorithms to locate CRMs in a genome. This gives rise to the problem of calculating the statistical significance of the event that multiple sites, recognized by different factors, would be found simultaneously in a text of a fixed length. The main difficulty comes from overlapping occurrences of motifs. So far, no tools have been developed allowing the computation of p-values for simultaneous occurrences of different motifs which can overlap. Results We developed and implemented an algorithm computing the p-value that s different motifs occur respectively k1, ..., ks or more times, possibly overlapping, in a random text. Motifs can be represented with a majority of popular motif models, but in all cases, without indels. Zero or first order Markov chains can be adopted as a model for the random text. The computational tool was tested on the set of cis-regulatory modules involved in D. melanogaster early development, for which there exists an annotation of binding sites for transcription factors. Our test allowed us to correctly identify transcription factors cooperatively/competitively binding to DNA. Method The algorithm that precisely computes the probability of simultaneous motif occurrences is inspired by the Aho-Corasick automaton and employs a prefix tree together with a transition function. The algorithm runs with the O(n|Σ|(m|ℋ MathType@MTEF@5@5@+=feaafiart1ev1aaatCvAUfKttLearuWrP9MDH5MBPbIqV92AaeXatLxBI9gBaebbnrfifHhDYfgasaacH8akY=wiFfYdH8Gipec8Eeeu0xXdbba9frFj0=OqFfea0dXdd9vqai=hGuQ8kuc9pgc9s8qqaq=dirpe0xb9q8qiLsFr0=vr0=vr0dc8meaabaqaciaacaGaaeqabaqabeGadaaakeaat0uy0HwzTfgDPnwy1egaryqtHrhAL1wy0L2yHvdaiqaacqWFlecsaaa@3762@| + K|σ|K) ∏i ki) time complexity, where n is the length of the text, |Σ| is the alphabet size, m is the maximal motif length, |

  4. Identification of DNA methylation changes at cis-regulatory elements during early steps of HSC differentiation using tagmentation-based whole genome bisulfite sequencing

    PubMed Central

    Lipka, Daniel B; Wang, Qi; Cabezas-Wallscheid, Nina; Klimmeck, Daniel; Weichenhan, Dieter; Herrmann, Carl; Lier, Amelie; Brocks, David; von Paleske, Lisa; Renders, Simon; Wünsche, Peer; Zeisberger, Petra; Gu, Lei; Haas, Simon; Essers, Marieke Ag; Brors, Benedikt; Eils, Roland; Trumpp, Andreas; Milsom, Michael D; Plass, Christoph

    2014-01-01

    Epigenetic alterations during cellular differentiation are a key molecular mechanism which both instructs and reinforces the process of lineage commitment. Within the haematopoietic system, progressive changes in the DNA methylome of haematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) are essential for the effective production of mature blood cells. Inhibition or loss of function of the cellular DNA methylation machinery has been shown to lead to a severe perturbation in blood production and is also an important driver of malignant transformation. HSCs constitute a very rare cell population in the bone marrow, capable of life-long self-renewal and multi-lineage differentiation. The low abundance of HSCs has been a major technological barrier to the global analysis of the CpG methylation status within both HSCs and their immediate progeny, the multipotent progenitors (MPPs). Within this Extra View article, we review the current understanding of how the DNA methylome regulates normal and malignant hematopoiesis. We also discuss the current methodologies that are available for interrogating the DNA methylation status of HSCs and MPPs and describe a new data set that was generated using tagmentation-based whole genome bisulfite sequencing (TWGBS) in order to comprehensively map methylated cytosines using the limited amount of genomic DNA that can be harvested from rare cell populations. Extended analysis of this data set clearly demonstrates the added value of genome-wide sequencing of methylated cytosines and identifies novel important cis-acting regulatory regions that are dynamically remodeled during the first steps of haematopoietic differentiation. PMID:25483069

  5. Arabidopsis Flower and Embryo Developmental Genes are Repressed in Seedlings by Different Combinations of Polycomb Group Proteins in Association with Distinct Sets of Cis-regulatory Elements

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Jian; Zhang, Lei; He, Chongsheng; Shen, Wen-Hui; Jin, Hong; Xu, Lin; Zhang, Yijing

    2016-01-01

    Polycomb repressive complexes (PRCs) play crucial roles in transcriptional repression and developmental regulation in both plants and animals. In plants, depletion of different members of PRCs causes both overlapping and unique phenotypic defects. However, the underlying molecular mechanism determining the target specificity and functional diversity is not sufficiently characterized. Here, we quantitatively compared changes of tri-methylation at H3K27 in Arabidopsis mutants deprived of various key PRC components. We show that CURLY LEAF (CLF), a major catalytic subunit of PRC2, coordinates with different members of PRC1 in suppression of distinct plant developmental programs. We found that expression of flower development genes is repressed in seedlings preferentially via non-redundant role of CLF, which specifically associated with LIKE HETEROCHROMATIN PROTEIN1 (LHP1). In contrast, expression of embryo development genes is repressed by PRC1-catalytic core subunits AtBMI1 and AtRING1 in common with PRC2-catalytic enzymes CLF or SWINGER (SWN). This context-dependent role of CLF corresponds well with the change in H3K27me3 profiles, and is remarkably associated with differential co-occupancy of binding motifs of transcription factors (TFs), including MADS box and ABA-related factors. We propose that different combinations of PRC members distinctively regulate different developmental programs, and their target specificity is modulated by specific TFs. PMID:26760036

  6. Phonons in the ternary phase ZrS 3-xSe x

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zwick, A.; Landa, G.; Carles, R.; Renucci, M. A.; Kjekshus, A.

    1983-03-01

    The mode behaviour of long wavelength optical phonons in the ternary phase ZrS 3-xSe x has been investigated by means of Raman spectroscopy through the whole composition range 0 ⩽ x ⩽ 3. A mixed one-, two- and three-mode behaviour is observed, depending respectively on modes of group I (quasi- rigid chain modes), II (internal deformation chain modes) and III (diatomic X-X [ X = S, Se] stretching mode). Three-mode behaviour of diatomic X-X mode is explained in terms of vibrations of S-S, Se-Se and S-Se pairs, practically insensitive to metal atoms as shown by comparison with the HfS 3-xSe x system. The analysis of integrated intensities of peaks assigned to vibrations of S-S, Se-Se and S-Se pairs on the basis of a statistical model concludes in favour of higher Raman efficiency of selenium pairs compared to sulfur pairs. On the other hand, one-mode behaviour of quasi-rigid chain modes establishes unambiguously a one-to-one mode correspondence between the two binary compounds, confirming thus our previous assignments. Spectral features of the ternary phase suggest contributions from the density of vibrational states due to relaxation of Raman selection rules resulting from configurational disorder.

  7. Enhanced ultraviolet-visible light responses of phototransistors based on single and a few ZrS3 nanobelts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tao, You-Rong; Wu, Jia-Jing; Wu, Xing-Cai

    2015-08-01

    Phototransistors based on single and three ZrS3 nanobelts were fabricated on SiO2/Si wafers by photolithography and the lift-off technique, respectively, and their light-induced electric properties were investigated in detail. Both the devices demonstrate a remarkable photoresponse from ultraviolet to near infrared light. The photoswitch current ratio (PCR) of the single-nanobelt phototransistor is 13 under the illumination of 405 nm light with an optical power of 10.5 mW cm-2 at a bias of 5 V, while the PCR of the three-nanobelt device is 210 under the illumination of 405 nm light with an optical power of 5.57 mW cm-2 at a bias of 1 V. On comparison of the photoresponses under the same conditions, the latter is found to be superior to the former, and both the devices show a much better photoresponse than the reported flexible ZrS3-nanobelt-film photodetector.

  8. A variant in the sonic hedgehog regulatory sequence (ZRS) is associated with triphalangeal thumb and deregulates expression in the developing limb

    PubMed Central

    Furniss, Dominic; Lettice, Laura A.; Taylor, Indira B.; Critchley, Paul S.; Giele, Henk; Hill, Robert E.; Wilkie, Andrew O.M.

    2008-01-01

    A locus for triphalangeal thumb, variably associated with pre-axial polydactyly, was previously identified in the zone of polarizing activity regulatory sequence (ZRS), a long range limb-specific enhancer of the Sonic Hedgehog (SHH) gene at human chromosome 7q36.3. Here, we demonstrate that a 295T>C variant in the human ZRS, previously thought to represent a neutral polymorphism, acts as a dominant allele with reduced penetrance. We found this variant in three independently ascertained probands from southern England with triphalangeal thumb, demonstrated significant linkage of the phenotype to the variant (LOD = 4.1), and identified a shared microsatellite haplotype around the ZRS, suggesting that the probands share a common ancestor. An individual homozygous for the 295C allele presented with isolated bilateral triphalangeal thumb resembling the heterozygous phenotype, suggesting that the variant is largely dominant to the wild-type allele. As a functional test of the pathogenicity of the 295C allele, we utilized a mutated ZRS construct to demonstrate that it can drive ectopic anterior expression of a reporter gene in the developing mouse forelimb. We conclude that the 295T>C variant is in fact pathogenic and, in southern England, appears to be the most common cause of triphalangeal thumb. Depending on the dispersal of the founding mutation, it may play a wider role in the aetiology of this disorder. PMID:18463159

  9. Identification of spontaneous mutations within the long-range limb-specific Sonic Hedgehog enhancer (ZRS) that alter Sonic Hedgehog expression in the chicken limb mutants oligozeugodactly and Silkie Breed

    PubMed Central

    Maas, Sarah A.; Suzuki, Takayuki; Fallon, John F.

    2011-01-01

    The evolutionarily conserved, non-coding ~800 base-pair zone of polarizing activity (ZPA) regulatory sequence (ZRS) controls Shh expression in the posterior limb. We report that the chicken mutant oligozeugodactly (ozd), which lacks limb Shh expression, has a large deletion within the ZRS. Furthermore, the preaxial polydactylous, Silkie Breed chicken, which develops ectopic anterior limb Shh expression, has a single base-pair change within the ZRS. Using an in vivo reporter assay to examine enhancer function in the chick limb, we demonstrate that the wild-type ZRS drives β-galactosidase reporter expression in the ZPA of both wild-type and ozd limbs. The Silkie ZRS drives β-galactosidase in both posterior and anterior Shh domains in wild-type limb buds. These results support the hypothesis that the ZRS integrates positive and negative prepatterned regulatory inputs in the chicken model system and demonstrate the utility of the chicken limb as an efficient genetic system for gene regulatory studies. PMID:21509895

  10. Analyses of fugu hoxa2 genes provide evidence for subfunctionalization of neural crest cell and rhombomere cis-regulatory modules during vertebrate evolution.

    PubMed

    McEllin, Jennifer A; Alexander, Tara B; Tümpel, Stefan; Wiedemann, Leanne M; Krumlauf, Robb

    2016-01-15

    Hoxa2 gene is a primary player in regulation of craniofacial programs of head development in vertebrates. Here we investigate the evolution of a Hoxa2 neural crest enhancer identified originally in mouse by comparing and contrasting the fugu hoxa2a and hoxa2b genes with their orthologous teleost and mammalian sequences. Using sequence analyses in combination with transgenic regulatory assays in zebrafish and mouse embryos we demonstrate subfunctionalization of regulatory activity for expression in hindbrain segments and neural crest cells between these two fugu co-orthologs. hoxa2a regulatory sequences have retained the ability to mediate expression in neural crest cells while those of hoxa2b include cis-elements that direct expression in rhombomeres. Functional dissection of the neural crest regulatory potential of the fugu hoxa2a and hoxa2b genes identify the previously unknown cis-element NC5, which is implicated in generating the differential activity of the enhancers from these genes. The NC5 region plays a similar role in the ability of this enhancer to mediate reporter expression in mice, suggesting it is a conserved component involved in control of neural crest expression of Hoxa2 in vertebrate craniofacial development. PMID:26632170

  11. Evolutionary Plasticity of Polycomb/Trithorax Response Elements in Drosophila Species

    PubMed Central

    Altmutter, Christina; Paro, Renato; Rehmsmeier, Marc

    2008-01-01

    cis-Regulatory DNA elements contain multiple binding sites for activators and repressors of transcription. Among these elements are enhancers, which establish gene expression states, and Polycomb/Trithorax response elements (PREs), which take over from enhancers and maintain transcription states of several hundred developmentally important genes. PREs are essential to the correct identities of both stem cells and differentiated cells. Evolutionary differences in cis-regulatory elements are a rich source of phenotypic diversity, and functional binding sites within regulatory elements turn over rapidly in evolution. However, more radical evolutionary changes that go beyond motif turnover have been difficult to assess. We used a combination of genome-wide bioinformatic prediction and experimental validation at specific loci, to evaluate PRE evolution across four Drosophila species. Our results show that PRE evolution is extraordinarily dynamic. First, we show that the numbers of PREs differ dramatically between species. Second, we demonstrate that functional binding sites within PREs at conserved positions turn over rapidly in evolution, as has been observed for enhancer elements. Finally, although it is theoretically possible that new elements can arise out of nonfunctional sequence, evidence that they do so is lacking. We show here that functional PREs are found at nonorthologous sites in conserved gene loci. By demonstrating that PRE evolution is not limited to the adaptation of preexisting elements, these findings document a novel dimension of cis-regulatory evolution. PMID:18959483

  12. Integration of bioinformatics and synthetic promoters leads to the discovery of novel elicitor-responsive cis-regulatory sequences in Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Koschmann, Jeannette; Machens, Fabian; Becker, Marlies; Niemeyer, Julia; Schulze, Jutta; Bülow, Lorenz; Stahl, Dietmar J; Hehl, Reinhard

    2012-09-01

    A combination of bioinformatic tools, high-throughput gene expression profiles, and the use of synthetic promoters is a powerful approach to discover and evaluate novel cis-sequences in response to specific stimuli. With Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) microarray data annotated to the PathoPlant database, 732 different queries with a focus on fungal and oomycete pathogens were performed, leading to 510 up-regulated gene groups. Using the binding site estimation suite of tools, BEST, 407 conserved sequence motifs were identified in promoter regions of these coregulated gene sets. Motif similarities were determined with STAMP, classifying the 407 sequence motifs into 37 families. A comparative analysis of these 37 families with the AthaMap, PLACE, and AGRIS databases revealed similarities to known cis-elements but also led to the discovery of cis-sequences not yet implicated in pathogen response. Using a parsley (Petroselinum crispum) protoplast system and a modified reporter gene vector with an internal transformation control, 25 elicitor-responsive cis-sequences from 10 different motif families were identified. Many of the elicitor-responsive cis-sequences also drive reporter gene expression in an Agrobacterium tumefaciens infection assay in Nicotiana benthamiana. This work significantly increases the number of known elicitor-responsive cis-sequences and demonstrates the successful integration of a diverse set of bioinformatic resources combined with synthetic promoter analysis for data mining and functional screening in plant-pathogen interaction. PMID:22744985

  13. Integration of Bioinformatics and Synthetic Promoters Leads to the Discovery of Novel Elicitor-Responsive cis-Regulatory Sequences in Arabidopsis1[C][W][OA

    PubMed Central

    Koschmann, Jeannette; Machens, Fabian; Becker, Marlies; Niemeyer, Julia; Schulze, Jutta; Bülow, Lorenz; Stahl, Dietmar J.; Hehl, Reinhard

    2012-01-01

    A combination of bioinformatic tools, high-throughput gene expression profiles, and the use of synthetic promoters is a powerful approach to discover and evaluate novel cis-sequences in response to specific stimuli. With Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) microarray data annotated to the PathoPlant database, 732 different queries with a focus on fungal and oomycete pathogens were performed, leading to 510 up-regulated gene groups. Using the binding site estimation suite of tools, BEST, 407 conserved sequence motifs were identified in promoter regions of these coregulated gene sets. Motif similarities were determined with STAMP, classifying the 407 sequence motifs into 37 families. A comparative analysis of these 37 families with the AthaMap, PLACE, and AGRIS databases revealed similarities to known cis-elements but also led to the discovery of cis-sequences not yet implicated in pathogen response. Using a parsley (Petroselinum crispum) protoplast system and a modified reporter gene vector with an internal transformation control, 25 elicitor-responsive cis-sequences from 10 different motif families were identified. Many of the elicitor-responsive cis-sequences also drive reporter gene expression in an Agrobacterium tumefaciens infection assay in Nicotiana benthamiana. This work significantly increases the number of known elicitor-responsive cis-sequences and demonstrates the successful integration of a diverse set of bioinformatic resources combined with synthetic promoter analysis for data mining and functional screening in plant-pathogen interaction. PMID:22744985

  14. Tissue- and stage-specific Wnt target gene expression is controlled subsequent to β-catenin recruitment to cis-regulatory modules.

    PubMed

    Nakamura, Yukio; de Paiva Alves, Eduardo; Veenstra, Gert Jan C; Hoppler, Stefan

    2016-06-01

    Key signalling pathways, such as canonical Wnt/β-catenin signalling, operate repeatedly to regulate tissue- and stage-specific transcriptional responses during development. Although recruitment of nuclear β-catenin to target genomic loci serves as the hallmark of canonical Wnt signalling, mechanisms controlling stage- or tissue-specific transcriptional responses remain elusive. Here, a direct comparison of genome-wide occupancy of β-catenin with a stage-matched Wnt-regulated transcriptome reveals that only a subset of β-catenin-bound genomic loci are transcriptionally regulated by Wnt signalling. We demonstrate that Wnt signalling regulates β-catenin binding to Wnt target genes not only when they are transcriptionally regulated, but also in contexts in which their transcription remains unaffected. The transcriptional response to Wnt signalling depends on additional mechanisms, such as BMP or FGF signalling for the particular genes we investigated, which do not influence β-catenin recruitment. Our findings suggest a more general paradigm for Wnt-regulated transcriptional mechanisms, which is relevant for tissue-specific functions of Wnt/β-catenin signalling in embryonic development but also for stem cell-mediated homeostasis and cancer. Chromatin association of β-catenin, even to functional Wnt-response elements, can no longer be considered a proxy for identifying transcriptionally Wnt-regulated genes. Context-dependent mechanisms are crucial for transcriptional activation of Wnt/β-catenin target genes subsequent to β-catenin recruitment. Our conclusions therefore also imply that Wnt-regulated β-catenin binding in one context can mark Wnt-regulated transcriptional target genes for different contexts. PMID:27068107

  15. Tissue- and stage-specific Wnt target gene expression is controlled subsequent to β-catenin recruitment to cis-regulatory modules

    PubMed Central

    Nakamura, Yukio; de Paiva Alves, Eduardo; Veenstra, Gert Jan C.; Hoppler, Stefan

    2016-01-01

    Key signalling pathways, such as canonical Wnt/β-catenin signalling, operate repeatedly to regulate tissue- and stage-specific transcriptional responses during development. Although recruitment of nuclear β-catenin to target genomic loci serves as the hallmark of canonical Wnt signalling, mechanisms controlling stage- or tissue-specific transcriptional responses remain elusive. Here, a direct comparison of genome-wide occupancy of β-catenin with a stage-matched Wnt-regulated transcriptome reveals that only a subset of β-catenin-bound genomic loci are transcriptionally regulated by Wnt signalling. We demonstrate that Wnt signalling regulates β-catenin binding to Wnt target genes not only when they are transcriptionally regulated, but also in contexts in which their transcription remains unaffected. The transcriptional response to Wnt signalling depends on additional mechanisms, such as BMP or FGF signalling for the particular genes we investigated, which do not influence β-catenin recruitment. Our findings suggest a more general paradigm for Wnt-regulated transcriptional mechanisms, which is relevant for tissue-specific functions of Wnt/β-catenin signalling in embryonic development but also for stem cell-mediated homeostasis and cancer. Chromatin association of β-catenin, even to functional Wnt-response elements, can no longer be considered a proxy for identifying transcriptionally Wnt-regulated genes. Context-dependent mechanisms are crucial for transcriptional activation of Wnt/β-catenin target genes subsequent to β-catenin recruitment. Our conclusions therefore also imply that Wnt-regulated β-catenin binding in one context can mark Wnt-regulated transcriptional target genes for different contexts. PMID:27068107

  16. The developmental activation of the chicken lysozyme locus in transgenic mice requires the interaction of a subset of enhancer elements with the promoter.

    PubMed Central

    Huber, M C; Jägle, U; Krüger, G; Bonifer, C

    1997-01-01

    The complete chicken lysozyme locus is expressed in a position independent fashion in macrophages of transgenic mice and forms the identical chromatin structure as observed with the endogenous gene in chicken cells. Individual lysozyme cis -regulatory elements reorganize their chromatin structure at different developmental stages. Accordingly, their activities are developmentally regulated, indicating a differential role of these elements in locus activation. We have shown previously that a subset of enhancer elements and the promoter are sufficient to activate transcription of the chicken lysozyme gene at the correct developmental stage. Here, we analyzed to which grade the developmentally controlled chromatin reorganizing capacity of cis -regulatory elements in the 5'-region of the chicken lysozyme locus is dependent on promoter elements, and we examined whether the lysozyme locus carries a dominant chromatin reorganizing element. To this end we generated transgenic mouse lines carrying constructs with a deletion of the lysozyme promoter. Expression of the transgene in macrophages is abolished, however, the chromatin reorganizing ability of the cis -regulatory elements is differentially impaired. Some cis -elements require the interaction with the promoter to stabilize transcription factor complexes detectable as DNase I hypersensitive sites in chromatin, whereas other elements reorganize their chromatin structure autonomously. PMID:9224598

  17. Identification of transcriptional regulatory elements for Ntng1 and Ntng2 genes in mice

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Higher brain function is supported by the precise temporal and spatial regulation of thousands of genes. The mechanisms that underlie transcriptional regulation in the brain, however, remain unclear. The Ntng1 and Ntng2 genes, encoding axonal membrane adhesion proteins netrin-G1 and netrin-G2, respectively, are paralogs that have evolved in vertebrates and are expressed in distinct neuronal subsets in a complementary manner. The characteristic expression patterns of these genes provide a part of the foundation of the cortical layer structure in mammals. Results We used gene-targeting techniques, bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC)-aided transgenesis techniques, and in vivo enhancer assays to examine transcriptional mechanisms in vivo to gain insight into how the characteristic expression patterns of these genes are acquired. Analysis of the gene expression patterns in the presence or absence of netrin-G1 and netrin-G2 functional proteins allowed us to exclude the possibility that a feedback or feedforward mechanism mediates their characteristic expression patterns. Findings from the BAC deletion series revealed that widely distributed combinations of cis-regulatory elements determine the differential gene expression patterns of these genes and that major cis-regulatory elements are located in the 85–45 kb upstream region of Ntng2 and in the 75–60 kb upstream region and intronic region of Ntng1. In vivo enhancer assays using 2-kb evolutionarily conserved regions detected enhancer activity in the distal upstream regions of both genes. Conclusions The complementary expression patterns of Ntng1 and Ntng2 are determined by transcriptional cis-regulatory elements widely scattered in these loci. The cis-regulatory elements characterized in this study will facilitate the development of novel genetic tools for functionally dissecting neural circuits to better understand vertebrate brain function. PMID:24642214

  18. Comparative genome sequencing of Drosophila pseudoobscura: Chromosomal, gene, and cis-element evolution

    PubMed Central

    Richards, Stephen; Liu, Yue; Bettencourt, Brian R.; Hradecky, Pavel; Letovsky, Stan; Nielsen, Rasmus; Thornton, Kevin; Hubisz, Melissa J.; Chen, Rui; Meisel, Richard P.; Couronne, Olivier; Hua, Sujun; Smith, Mark A.; Zhang, Peili; Liu, Jing; Bussemaker, Harmen J.; van Batenburg, Marinus F.; Howells, Sally L.; Scherer, Steven E.; Sodergren, Erica; Matthews, Beverly B.; Crosby, Madeline A.; Schroeder, Andrew J.; Ortiz-Barrientos, Daniel; Rives, Catharine M.; Metzker, Michael L.; Muzny, Donna M.; Scott, Graham; Steffen, David; Wheeler, David A.; Worley, Kim C.; Havlak, Paul; Durbin, K. James; Egan, Amy; Gill, Rachel; Hume, Jennifer; Morgan, Margaret B.; Miner, George; Hamilton, Cerissa; Huang, Yanmei; Waldron, Lenée; Verduzco, Daniel; Clerc-Blankenburg, Kerstin P.; Dubchak, Inna; Noor, Mohamed A.F.; Anderson, Wyatt; White, Kevin P.; Clark, Andrew G.; Schaeffer, Stephen W.; Gelbart, William; Weinstock, George M.; Gibbs, Richard A.

    2005-01-01

    We have sequenced the genome of a second Drosophila species, Drosophila pseudoobscura, and compared this to the genome sequence of Drosophila melanogaster, a primary model organism. Throughout evolution the vast majority of Drosophila genes have remained on the same chromosome arm, but within each arm gene order has been extensively reshuffled, leading to a minimum of 921 syntenic blocks shared between the species. A repetitive sequence is found in the D. pseudoobscura genome at many junctions between adjacent syntenic blocks. Analysis of this novel repetitive element family suggests that recombination between offset elements may have given rise to many paracentric inversions, thereby contributing to the shuffling of gene order in the D. pseudoobscura lineage. Based on sequence similarity and synteny, 10,516 putative orthologs have been identified as a core gene set conserved over 25–55 million years (Myr) since the pseudoobscura/melanogaster divergence. Genes expressed in the testes had higher amino acid sequence divergence than the genome-wide average, consistent with the rapid evolution of sex-specific proteins. Cis-regulatory sequences are more conserved than random and nearby sequences between the species—but the difference is slight, suggesting that the evolution of cis-regulatory elements is flexible. Overall, a pattern of repeat-mediated chromosomal rearrangement, and high coadaptation of both male genes and cis-regulatory sequences emerges as important themes of genome divergence between these species of Drosophila. PMID:15632085

  19. Comparative genome sequencing of drosophila pseudoobscura: Chromosomal, gene and cis-element evolution

    SciTech Connect

    Richards, Stephen; Liu, Yue; Bettencourt, Brian R.; Hradecky, Pavel; Letovsky, Stan; Nielsen, Rasmus; Thornton, Kevin; Todd, Melissa J.; Chen, Rui; Meisel, Richard P.; Couronne, Olivier; Hua, Sujun; Smith, Mark A.; Bussemaker, Harmen J.; van Batenburg, Marinus F.; Howells, Sally L.; Scherer, Steven E.; Sodergren, Erica; Matthews, Beverly B.; Crosby, Madeline A.; Schroeder, Andrew J.; Ortiz-Barrientos, Daniel; Rives, Catherine M.; Metzker, Michael L.; Muzny, Donna M.; Scott, Graham; Steffen, David; Wheeler, David A.; Worley, Kim C.; Havlak, Paul; Durbin, K. James; Egan, Amy; Gill, Rachel; Hume, Jennifer; Morgan, Margaret B.; Miner, George; Hamilton, Cerissa; Huang, Yanmei; Waldron, Lenee; Verduzco, Daniel; Blankenburg, Kerstin P.; Dubchak, Inna; Noor, Mohamed A.F.; Anderson, Wyatt; White, Kevin P.; Clark, Andrew G.; Schaeffer, Stephen W.; Gelbart, William; Weinstock, George M.; Gibbs, Richard A.

    2004-04-01

    The genome sequence of a second fruit fly, D. pseudoobscura, presents an opportunity for comparative analysis of a primary model organism D. melanogaster. The vast majority of Drosophila genes have remained on the same arm, but within each arm gene order has been extensively reshuffled leading to the identification of approximately 1300 syntenic blocks. A repetitive sequence is found in the D. pseudoobscura genome at many junctions between adjacent syntenic blocks. Analysis of this novel repetitive element family suggests that recombination between offset elements may have given rise to many paracentric inversions, thereby contributing to the shuffling of gene order in the D. pseudoobscura lineage. Based on sequence similarity and synteny, 10,516 putative orthologs have been identified as a core gene set conserved over 35 My since divergence. Genes expressed in the testes had higher amino acid sequence divergence than the genome wide average consistent with the rapid evolution of sex-specific proteins. Cis-regulatory sequences are more conserved than control sequences between the species but the difference is slight, suggesting that the evolution of cis-regulatory elements is flexible. Overall, a picture of repeat mediated chromosomal rearrangement, and high co-adaptation of both male genes and cis-regulatory sequences emerges as important themes of genome divergence between these species of Drosophila.

  20. Gains and Losses of Cis-regulatory Elements Led to Divergence of the Arabidopsis APETALA1 and CAULIFLOWER Duplicate Genes in the Time, Space, and Level of Expression and Regulation of One Paralog by the Other1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Bin

    2016-01-01

    How genes change their expression patterns over time is still poorly understood. Here, by conducting expression, functional, bioinformatic, and evolutionary analyses, we demonstrate that the differences between the Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) APETALA1 (AP1) and CAULIFLOWER (CAL) duplicate genes in the time, space, and level of expression were determined by the presence or absence of functionally important transcription factor-binding sites (TFBSs) in regulatory regions. In particular, a CArG box, which is the autoregulatory site of AP1 that can also be bound by the CAL protein, is a key determinant of the expression differences. Because of the CArG box, AP1 is both autoregulated and cross-regulated (by AP1 and CAL, respectively), and its relatively high-level expression is maintained till to the late stages of sepal and petal development. The observation that the CArG box was gained recently further suggests that the autoregulation and cross-regulation of AP1, as well as its function in sepal and petal development, are derived features. By comparing the evolutionary histories of this and other TFBSs, we further indicate that the divergence of AP1 and CAL in regulatory regions has been markedly asymmetric and can be divided into several stages. Specifically, shortly after duplication, when AP1 happened to be the paralog that maintained the function of the ancestral gene, CAL experienced certain degrees of degenerate evolution, in which several functionally important TFBSs were lost. Later, when functional divergence allowed the survival of both paralogs, CAL remained largely unchanged in expression, whereas the functions of AP1 were gradually reinforced by gains of the CArG box and other TFBSs. PMID:27208240

  1. Gains and Losses of Cis-regulatory Elements Led to Divergence of the Arabidopsis APETALA1 and CAULIFLOWER Duplicate Genes in the Time, Space, and Level of Expression and Regulation of One Paralog by the Other.

    PubMed

    Ye, Lingling; Wang, Bin; Zhang, Wengen; Shan, Hongyan; Kong, Hongzhi

    2016-06-01

    How genes change their expression patterns over time is still poorly understood. Here, by conducting expression, functional, bioinformatic, and evolutionary analyses, we demonstrate that the differences between the Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) APETALA1 (AP1) and CAULIFLOWER (CAL) duplicate genes in the time, space, and level of expression were determined by the presence or absence of functionally important transcription factor-binding sites (TFBSs) in regulatory regions. In particular, a CArG box, which is the autoregulatory site of AP1 that can also be bound by the CAL protein, is a key determinant of the expression differences. Because of the CArG box, AP1 is both autoregulated and cross-regulated (by AP1 and CAL, respectively), and its relatively high-level expression is maintained till to the late stages of sepal and petal development. The observation that the CArG box was gained recently further suggests that the autoregulation and cross-regulation of AP1, as well as its function in sepal and petal development, are derived features. By comparing the evolutionary histories of this and other TFBSs, we further indicate that the divergence of AP1 and CAL in regulatory regions has been markedly asymmetric and can be divided into several stages. Specifically, shortly after duplication, when AP1 happened to be the paralog that maintained the function of the ancestral gene, CAL experienced certain degrees of degenerate evolution, in which several functionally important TFBSs were lost. Later, when functional divergence allowed the survival of both paralogs, CAL remained largely unchanged in expression, whereas the functions of AP1 were gradually reinforced by gains of the CArG box and other TFBSs. PMID:27208240

  2. Application of zone-folding approach to the first-principles estimation of thermodynamic properties of carbon and ZrS2 -based nanotubes.

    PubMed

    Bandura, Andrei V; Porsev, Vitaly V; Evarestov, Robert A

    2016-03-15

    A zone-folding (ZF) approach is applied for the estimation of the phonon contributions to thermodynamic properties of carbon-and ZrS2 -based nanotubes (NTs) of hexagonal morphology with different chiralities. The results obtained are compared with those from the direct calculation of the thermodynamic properties of NTs using PBE0 hybrid exchange-correlation functional. The phonon contribution to the stability of NTs proved to be negligible for the internal energy and small for the Helmholtz free energy. It is found that the ZF approach allows us an accurate estimation of phonon contributions to internal energy, but slightly overestimates the phonon contributions to entropy. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26519863

  3. Regulatory elements of the floral homeotic gene AGAMOUS identified by phylogenetic footprinting and shadowing.

    SciTech Connect

    Hong, R. L., Hamaguchi, L., Busch, M. A., and Weigel, D.

    2003-06-01

    OAK-B135 In Arabidopsis thaliana, cis-regulatory sequences of the floral homeotic gene AGAMOUS (AG) are located in the second intron. This 3 kb intron contains binding sites for two direct activators of AG, LEAFY (LFY) and WUSCHEL (WUS), along with other putative regulatory elements. We have used phylogenetic footprinting and the related technique of phylogenetic shadowing to identify putative cis-regulatory elements in this intron. Among 29 Brassicaceae, several other motifs, but not the LFY and WUS binding sites previously identified, are largely invariant. Using reporter gene analyses, we tested six of these motifs and found that they are all functionally important for activity of AG regulatory sequences in A. thaliana. Although there is little obvious sequence similarity outside the Brassicaceae, the intron from cucumber AG has at least partial activity in A. thaliana. Our studies underscore the value of the comparative approach as a tool that complements gene-by-gene promoter dissection, but also highlight that sequence-based studies alone are insufficient for a complete identification of cis-regulatory sites.

  4. Regulatory Elements of the Floral Homeotic Gene AGAMOUS Identified by Phylogenetic Footprinting and ShadowingW⃞

    PubMed Central

    Hong, Ray L.; Hamaguchi, Lynn; Busch, Maximilian A.; Weigel, Detlef

    2003-01-01

    In Arabidopsis thaliana, cis-regulatory sequences of the floral homeotic gene AGAMOUS (AG) are located in the second intron. This 3-kb intron contains binding sites for two direct activators of AG, LEAFY (LFY) and WUSCHEL (WUS), along with other putative regulatory elements. We have used phylogenetic footprinting and the related technique of phylogenetic shadowing to identify putative cis-regulatory elements in this intron. Among 29 Brassicaceae species, several other motifs, but not the LFY and WUS binding sites identified previously, are largely invariant. Using reporter gene analyses, we tested six of these motifs and found that they are all functionally important for the activity of AG regulatory sequences in A. thaliana. Although there is little obvious sequence similarity outside the Brassicaceae, the intron from cucumber AG has at least partial activity in A. thaliana. Our studies underscore the value of the comparative approach as a tool that complements gene-by-gene promoter dissection but also demonstrate that sequence-based studies alone are insufficient for a complete identification of cis-regulatory sites. PMID:12782724

  5. Highly conserved elements discovered in vertebrates are present in non-syntenic loci of tunicates, act as enhancers and can be transcribed during development

    PubMed Central

    Sanges, Remo; Hadzhiev, Yavor; Gueroult-Bellone, Marion; Roure, Agnes; Ferg, Marco; Meola, Nicola; Amore, Gabriele; Basu, Swaraj; Brown, Euan R.; De Simone, Marco; Petrera, Francesca; Licastro, Danilo; Strähle, Uwe; Banfi, Sandro; Lemaire, Patrick; Birney, Ewan; Müller, Ferenc; Stupka, Elia

    2013-01-01

    Co-option of cis-regulatory modules has been suggested as a mechanism for the evolution of expression sites during development. However, the extent and mechanisms involved in mobilization of cis-regulatory modules remains elusive. To trace the history of non-coding elements, which may represent candidate ancestral cis-regulatory modules affirmed during chordate evolution, we have searched for conserved elements in tunicate and vertebrate (Olfactores) genomes. We identified, for the first time, 183 non-coding sequences that are highly conserved between the two groups. Our results show that all but one element are conserved in non-syntenic regions between vertebrate and tunicate genomes, while being syntenic among vertebrates. Nevertheless, in all the groups, they are significantly associated with transcription factors showing specific functions fundamental to animal development, such as multicellular organism development and sequence-specific DNA binding. The majority of these regions map onto ultraconserved elements and we demonstrate that they can act as functional enhancers within the organism of origin, as well as in cross-transgenesis experiments, and that they are transcribed in extant species of Olfactores. We refer to the elements as ‘Olfactores conserved non-coding elements’. PMID:23393190

  6. "Reverse Genomics" Predicts Function of Human Conserved Noncoding Elements.

    PubMed

    Marcovitz, Amir; Jia, Robin; Bejerano, Gill

    2016-05-01

    Evolutionary changes in cis-regulatory elements are thought to play a key role in morphological and physiological diversity across animals. Many conserved noncoding elements (CNEs) function as cis-regulatory elements, controlling gene expression levels in different biological contexts. However, determining specific associations between CNEs and related phenotypes is a challenging task. Here, we present a computational "reverse genomics" approach that predicts the phenotypic functions of human CNEs. We identify thousands of human CNEs that were lost in at least two independent mammalian lineages (IL-CNEs), and match their evolutionary profiles against a diverse set of phenotypes recently annotated across multiple mammalian species. We identify 2,759 compelling associations between human CNEs and a diverse set of mammalian phenotypes. We discuss multiple CNEs, including a predicted ear element near BMP7, a pelvic CNE in FBN1, a brain morphology element in UBE4B, and an aquatic adaptation forelimb CNE near EGR2, and provide a full list of our predictions. As more genomes are sequenced and more traits are annotated across species, we expect our method to facilitate the interpretation of noncoding mutations in human disease and expedite the discovery of individual CNEs that play key roles in human evolution and development. PMID:26744417

  7. A steganalysis-based approach to comprehensive identification and characterization of functional regulatory elements

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Guandong; Zhang, Weixiong

    2006-01-01

    The comprehensive identification of cis-regulatory elements on a genome scale is a challenging problem. We develop a novel, steganalysis-based approach for genome-wide motif finding, called WordSpy, by viewing regulatory regions as a stegoscript with cis-elements embedded in 'background' sequences. We apply WordSpy to the promoters of cell-cycle-related genes of Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Arabidopsis thaliana, identifying all known cell-cycle motifs with high ranking. WordSpy can discover a complete set of cis-elements and facilitate the systematic study of regulatory networks. PMID:16787547

  8. Close Sequence Comparisons are Sufficient to Identify Humancis-Regulatory Elements

    SciTech Connect

    Prabhakar, Shyam; Poulin, Francis; Shoukry, Malak; Afzal, Veena; Rubin, Edward M.; Couronne, Olivier; Pennacchio, Len A.

    2005-12-01

    Cross-species DNA sequence comparison is the primary method used to identify functional noncoding elements in human and other large genomes. However, little is known about the relative merits of evolutionarily close and distant sequence comparisons, due to the lack of a universal metric for sequence conservation, and also the paucity of empirically defined benchmark sets of cis-regulatory elements. To address this problem, we developed a general-purpose algorithm (Gumby) that detects slowly-evolving regions in primate, mammalian and more distant comparisons without requiring adjustment of parameters, and ranks conserved elements by P-value using Karlin-Altschul statistics. We benchmarked Gumby predictions against previously identified cis-regulatory elements at diverse genomic loci, and also tested numerous extremely conserved human-rodent sequences for transcriptional enhancer activity using reporter-gene assays in transgenic mice. Human regulatory elements were identified with acceptable sensitivity and specificity by comparison with 1-5 other eutherian mammals or 6 other simian primates. More distant comparisons (marsupial, avian, amphibian and fish) failed to identify many of the empirically defined functional noncoding elements. We derived an intuitive relationship between ancient and recent noncoding sequence conservation from whole genome comparative analysis, which explains some of these findings. Lastly, we determined that, in addition to strength of conservation, genomic location and/or density of surrounding conserved elements must also be considered in selecting candidate enhancers for testing at embryonic time points.

  9. Conserved Noncoding Elements in the Most Distant Genera of Cephalochordates: The Goldilocks Principle.

    PubMed

    Yue, Jia-Xing; Kozmikova, Iryna; Ono, Hiroki; Nossa, Carlos W; Kozmik, Zbynek; Putnam, Nicholas H; Yu, Jr-Kai; Holland, Linda Z

    2016-01-01

    Cephalochordates, the sister group of vertebrates + tunicates, are evolving particularly slowly. Therefore, genome comparisons between two congeners of Branchiostoma revealed so many conserved noncoding elements (CNEs), that it was not clear how many are functional regulatory elements. To more effectively identify CNEs with potential regulatory functions, we compared noncoding sequences of genomes of the most phylogenetically distant cephalochordate genera, Asymmetron and Branchiostoma, which diverged approximately 120-160 million years ago. We found 113,070 noncoding elements conserved between the two species, amounting to 3.3% of the genome. The genomic distribution, target gene ontology, and enriched motifs of these CNEs all suggest that many of them are probably cis-regulatory elements. More than 90% of previously verified amphioxus regulatory elements were re-captured in this study. A search of the cephalochordate CNEs around 50 developmental genes in several vertebrate genomes revealed eight CNEs conserved between cephalochordates and vertebrates, indicating sequence conservation over >500 million years of divergence. The function of five CNEs was tested in reporter assays in zebrafish, and one was also tested in amphioxus. All five CNEs proved to be tissue-specific enhancers. Taken together, these findings indicate that even though Branchiostoma and Asymmetron are distantly related, as they are evolving slowly, comparisons between them are likely optimal for identifying most of their tissue-specific cis-regulatory elements laying the foundation for functional characterizations and a better understanding of the evolution of developmental regulation in cephalochordates. PMID:27412606

  10. Conserved Noncoding Elements in the Most Distant Genera of Cephalochordates: The Goldilocks Principle

    PubMed Central

    Yue, Jia-Xing; Kozmikova, Iryna; Ono, Hiroki; Nossa, Carlos W.; Kozmik, Zbynek; Putnam, Nicholas H.; Yu, Jr-Kai; Holland, Linda Z.

    2016-01-01

    Cephalochordates, the sister group of vertebrates + tunicates, are evolving particularly slowly. Therefore, genome comparisons between two congeners of Branchiostoma revealed so many conserved noncoding elements (CNEs), that it was not clear how many are functional regulatory elements. To more effectively identify CNEs with potential regulatory functions, we compared noncoding sequences of genomes of the most phylogenetically distant cephalochordate genera, Asymmetron and Branchiostoma, which diverged approximately 120–160 million years ago. We found 113,070 noncoding elements conserved between the two species, amounting to 3.3% of the genome. The genomic distribution, target gene ontology, and enriched motifs of these CNEs all suggest that many of them are probably cis-regulatory elements. More than 90% of previously verified amphioxus regulatory elements were re-captured in this study. A search of the cephalochordate CNEs around 50 developmental genes in several vertebrate genomes revealed eight CNEs conserved between cephalochordates and vertebrates, indicating sequence conservation over >500 million years of divergence. The function of five CNEs was tested in reporter assays in zebrafish, and one was also tested in amphioxus. All five CNEs proved to be tissue-specific enhancers. Taken together, these findings indicate that even though Branchiostoma and Asymmetron are distantly related, as they are evolving slowly, comparisons between them are likely optimal for identifying most of their tissue-specific cis-regulatory elements laying the foundation for functional characterizations and a better understanding of the evolution of developmental regulation in cephalochordates. PMID:27412606

  11. Structure of Proximal and Distant Regulatory Elements in the Human Genome

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ovcharenko, Ivan

    Clustering of multiple transcription factor binding sites (TFBSs) for the same transcription factor (TF) is a common feature of cis-regulatory modules in invertebrate animals, but the occurrence of such homotypic clusters of TFBSs (HCTs) in the human genome has remained largely unknown. To explore whether HCTs are also common in human and other vertebrates, we used known binding motifs for vertebrate TFs and a hidden Markov model-based approach to detect HCTs in the human, mouse, chicken, and fugu genomes, and examined their association with cis-regulatory modules. We found that evolutionarily conserved HCTs occupy nearly 2% of the human genome, with experimental evidence for individual TFs supporting their binding to predicted HCTs. More than half of promoters of human genes contain HCTs, with a distribution around the transcription start site in agreement with the experimental data from the ENCODE project. In addition, almost half of 487 experimentally validated developmental enhancers contain them as well - a number more than 25-fold larger than expected by chance. We also found evidence of negative selection acting on TFBSs within HCTs, as the conservation of TFBSs is stronger than the conservation of sequences separating them. The important role of HCTs as components of developmental enhancers is additionally supported by a strong correlation between HCTs and the binding of the enhancer-associated co-activator protein p300. Experimental validation of HCT-containing elements in both zebrafish and mouse suggest that HCTs could be used to predict both the presence of enhancers and their tissue specificity, and are thus a feature that can be effectively used in deciphering the gene regulatory code. In conclusion, our results indicate that HCTs are a pervasive feature of human cis-regulatory modules and suggest that they play an important role in gene regulation in the human and other vertebrate genomes.

  12. Splicing regulation: From a parts list of regulatory elements to an integrated splicing code

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Zefeng; Burge, Christopher B.

    2008-01-01

    Alternative splicing of pre-mRNAs is a major contributor to both proteomic diversity and control of gene expression levels. Splicing is tightly regulated in different tissues and developmental stages, and its disruption can lead to a wide range of human diseases. An important long-term goal in the splicing field is to determine a set of rules or “code” for splicing that will enable prediction of the splicing pattern of any primary transcript from its sequence. Outside of the core splice site motifs, the bulk of the information required for splicing is thought to be contained in exonic and intronic cis-regulatory elements that function by recruitment of sequence-specific RNA-binding protein factors that either activate or repress the use of adjacent splice sites. Here, we summarize the current state of knowledge of splicing cis-regulatory elements and their context-dependent effects on splicing, emphasizing recent global/genome-wide studies and open questions. PMID:18369186

  13. The quest for mammalian Polycomb response elements: are we there yet?

    PubMed

    Bauer, Moritz; Trupke, Johanna; Ringrose, Leonie

    2016-06-01

    A long-standing mystery in the field of Polycomb and Trithorax regulation is how these proteins, which are highly conserved between flies and mammals, can regulate several hundred equally highly conserved target genes, but recognise these targets via cis-regulatory elements that appear to show no conservation in their DNA sequence. These elements, termed Polycomb/Trithorax response elements (PRE/TREs or PREs), are relatively well characterised in flies, but their mammalian counterparts have proved to be extremely difficult to identify. Recent progress in this endeavour has generated a wealth of data and raised several intriguing questions. Here, we ask why and to what extent mammalian PREs are so different to those of the fly. We review recent advances, evaluate current models and identify open questions in the quest for mammalian PREs. PMID:26453572

  14. Crystal Structure, Electronic Structure, and Photocatalytic Activity of Oxysulfides: La2Ta2ZrS2O8, La2Ta2TiS2O8, and La2Nb2TiS2O8.

    PubMed

    Goto, Yosuke; Seo, Jeongsuk; Kumamoto, Kazunori; Hisatomi, Takashi; Mizuguchi, Yoshikazu; Kamihara, Yoichi; Katayama, Masao; Minegishi, Tsutomu; Domen, Kazunari

    2016-04-01

    The novel oxysulfides La2Ta2ZrS2O8 (LTZSO), La2Ta2TiS2O8 (LTTSO), and La2Nb2TiS2O8 (LNTSO) were synthesized, and their crystal structures, electronic structures, and photocatalytic activities for water splitting under visible light were investigated. Density functional theory calculations showed that these compounds are direct-band-gap semiconductors. Close to the conduction band minimum, the main contribution to the band structure comes from the d orbitals of Zr or Ti ions, while the region near the valence band maximum is associated with the 3p orbitals of S ions. The absorption-edge wavelength was determined to be 540 nm for LTZSO and 700 nm for LTTSO and LNTSO. An analysis of the crystal structure using synchrotron X-ray diffraction revealed that these compounds contained antisite defects at transition metal ion sites, and these were considered to be the origin of the broad absorption at wavelengths longer than that corresponding to band-gap excitation. LTZSO was revealed to be active in the oxygen evolution reaction from aqueous solution containing a sacrificial electron acceptor under visible-light illumination. This result was supported by the band alignment and flat-band potential determined by photoelectron spectroscopy and Mott-Schottky plots. PMID:27008368

  15. Multiple cis elements and GATA factors regulate a cuticle collagen gene in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Jianghua; Madaan, Uday; Park, Amy; Aftab, Neelum; Savage-Dunn, Cathy

    2015-01-01

    The cuticle of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans is a specialized extracellular matrix whose major component is collagen. Cuticle collagens are encoded by a large multi-gene family consisting of more than 150 members. Cuticle collagen genes are expressed in epidermis (hypodermis) and may be stage-specific or cyclically expressed. We identified cuticle collagen genes as transcriptional targets of the DBL-1 TGF-β-related signaling pathway. These studies prompted us to investigate the cis-regulatory sequences required for transcription of one of the target genes, col-41. We generated reporter constructs that reproduce stage- and tissue-specific expression of fluorescent markers. We identify four conserved sequence elements that are required for transcription of reporters. Finally, we provide evidence that col-41 expression is controlled by a sequence element containing two GATA sites and by the epidermal GATA transcription factors ELT-1 and ELT-3. PMID:25711168

  16. Identifier (ID) elements are not preferentially located to brain-specific genes: high ID element representation in other tissue-specific- and housekeeping genes of the rat.

    PubMed

    Goldman, Andrés; Capoano, Carlos A; González-López, Evangelina; Geisinger, Adriana

    2014-01-01

    BC1 is a short non-coding RNA from rodents, which is transcribed by RNA pol III. Its RNA is highly abundant in the brain, where it exerts a post-transcriptional regulatory role in dendrites. Upon transcription, retroposition and insertion, BC1 gives rise to a subclass of short interspersed repetitive sequences (SINEs) named identifier (ID) elements. IDs can become integrated inside non-coding regions of RNA pol II transcription units, and - although challenged by a couple of reports - their preferential location to brain-specific genes has been long proposed. Furthermore, an additional, cis-regulatory role in the control of brain-specific pol II-directed transcripts has been suggested for these sequences. In this work we used Northern blot and in silico analyses to examine IDs' location among pol II transcription units in different tissues, and in housekeeping genes. ID sequences appeared distributed in a similar fashion within tissue-specific hnRNA populations of the brain, testis and liver, and within housekeeping primary transcripts as well. Moreover, when the lengths of the unprocessed transcripts were considered, ID representation was higher in housekeeping ones. On the other hand, ID elements appeared similarly distributed among the different gene regions, with the obvious exclusion of those sequences where strict constraints for proper gene expression exist. Altogether, the widespread distribution of ID elements in all the analyzed genes - including housekeeping - and in all gene regions, suggests a random location, raising questions about the specific cis-regulatory role of those sequences. PMID:24125954

  17. Evolution of cis elements in the differential expression of two Hoxa2 coparalogous genes in pufferfish (Takifugu rubripes).

    PubMed

    Tümpel, Stefan; Cambronero, Francisco; Wiedemann, Leanne M; Krumlauf, Robb

    2006-04-01

    Sequence divergence in cis-regulatory elements is an important mechanism contributing to functional diversity of genes during evolution. Gene duplication and divergence provide an opportunity for selectively preserving initial functions and evolving new activities. Many vertebrates have 39 Hox genes organized into four clusters (Hoxa-Hoxd); however, some ray-finned fishes have extra Hox clusters. There is a single Hoxa2 gene in most vertebrates, whereas fugu (Takifugu rubripes) and medaka (Oryzias latipes) have two coparalogous genes [Hoxa2(a) and Hoxa2(b)]. In the hindbrain, both genes are expressed in rhombomere (r) 2, but only Hoxa2(b) is expressed in r3, r4, and r5. Multiple regulatory modules directing segmental expression of chicken and mouse Hoxa2 genes have been identified, and each module is composed of a series of discrete elements. We used these modules to investigate the basis of differential expression of duplicated Hoxa2 genes, as a model for understanding the divergence of cis-regulatory elements. Therefore, we cloned putative regulatory regions of the fugu and medaka Hoxa2(a) and -(b) genes and assayed their activity. We found that these modules direct reporter expression in a chicken assay, in a manner corresponding to their endogenous expression pattern in fugu. Although sequence comparisons reveal many differences between the two coparalogous genes, specific subtle changes in seven cis elements of the Hoxa2(a) gene restore segmental regulatory activity. Therefore, drift in subsets of the elements in the regulatory modules is responsible for the differential expression of the two coparalogous genes, thus providing insight into the evolution of cis elements. PMID:16569696

  18. A novel hepatitis B virus (HBV) genetic element with Rev response element-like properties that is essential for expression of HBV gene products.

    PubMed Central

    Huang, J; Liang, T J

    1993-01-01

    Many viruses possess complex mechanisms involving multiple gene products and cis-regulatory elements in order to achieve a fine control of their gene expression at both transcriptional and posttranscriptional levels. Hepatitis B virus (HBV) and retroviruses share many structural and functional similarities. In this study, by genetic and biochemical analyses, we have demonstrated the existence of a novel genetic element within the HBV genome which is essential for high-level expression of viral gene products. This element is located 3' to the envelope coding region. We have shown that this genetic element is cis acting at the posttranscriptional level and that its function is exerted at the level of RNA processing as part of transcribed sequences. This RNA element is also functional in the context of a heterologous gene. Similar to the function of Rev-Rev response element interaction of human immunodeficiency virus type 1, this element appears to inhibit the splicing process and facilitate the transport and utilization of HBV transcripts. Images PMID:8246965

  19. Gene regulation by structured mRNA elements.

    PubMed

    Wachter, Andreas

    2014-05-01

    The precise temporal and spatial coordination of gene activity, based on the integration of internal and external signals, is crucial for the accurate functioning of all biological processes. Although the basic principles of gene expression were established some 60 years ago, recent research has revealed a surprising complexity in the control of gene activity. Many of these gene regulatory mechanisms occur at the level of the mRNA, including sophisticated gene control tasks mediated by structured mRNA elements. We now know that mRNA folds can serve as highly specific receptors for various types of molecules, as exemplified by metabolite-binding riboswitches, and interfere with pro- and eukaryotic gene expression at the level of transcription, translation, and RNA processing. Gene regulation by structured mRNA elements comprises versatile strategies including self-cleaving ribozymes, RNA-folding-mediated occlusion or presentation of cis-regulatory sequences, and sequestration of trans-acting factors including other RNAs and proteins. PMID:24780087

  20. Insight into GATA1 transcriptional activity through interrogation of cis elements disrupted in human erythroid disorders

    PubMed Central

    Wakabayashi, Aoi; Ulirsch, Jacob C.; Ludwig, Leif S.; Fiorini, Claudia; Yasuda, Makiko; Choudhuri, Avik; McDonel, Patrick; Zon, Leonard I.; Sankaran, Vijay G.

    2016-01-01

    Whole-exome sequencing has been incredibly successful in identifying causal genetic variants and has revealed a number of novel genes associated with blood and other diseases. One limitation of this approach is that it overlooks mutations in noncoding regulatory elements. Furthermore, the mechanisms by which mutations in transcriptional cis-regulatory elements result in disease remain poorly understood. Here we used CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing to interrogate three such elements harboring mutations in human erythroid disorders, which in all cases are predicted to disrupt a canonical binding motif for the hematopoietic transcription factor GATA1. Deletions of as few as two to four nucleotides resulted in a substantial decrease (>80%) in target gene expression. Isolated deletions of the canonical GATA1 binding motif completely abrogated binding of the cofactor TAL1, which binds to a separate motif. Having verified the functionality of these three GATA1 motifs, we demonstrate strong evolutionary conservation of GATA1 motifs in regulatory elements proximal to other genes implicated in erythroid disorders, and show that targeted disruption of such elements results in altered gene expression. By modeling transcription factor binding patterns, we show that multiple transcription factors are associated with erythroid gene expression, and have created predictive maps modeling putative disruptions of their binding sites at key regulatory elements. Our study provides insight into GATA1 transcriptional activity and may prove a useful resource for investigating the pathogenicity of noncoding variants in human erythroid disorders. PMID:27044088

  1. A developmentally regulated Caulobacter flagellar promoter is activated by 3' enhancer and IHF binding elements.

    PubMed Central

    Gober, J W; Shapiro, L

    1992-01-01

    The transcription of a group of flagellar genes is temporally and spatially regulated during the Caulobacter crescentus cell cycle. These genes all share the same 5' cis-regulatory elements: a sigma 54 promoter, a binding site for integration host factor (IHF), and an enhancer sequence, known as the ftr element. We have partially purified the ftr-binding proteins, and we show that they require the same enhancer sequences for binding as are required for transcriptional activation. We have also partially purified the Caulobacter homolog of IHF and demonstrate that it can facilitate in vitro integrase-mediated lambda recombination. Using site-directed mutagenesis, we provide the first demonstration that natural enhancer sequences and IHF binding elements that reside 3' to the sigma 54 promoter of a bacterial gene, flaNQ, are required for transcription of the operon, in vivo. The IHF protein and the ftr-binding protein is primarily restricted to the predivisional cell, the cell type in which these promoters are transcribed. flaNQ promoter expression is localized to the swarmer pole of the predivisional cell, as are other flagellar promoters that possess these regulatory sequences 5' to the start site. The requirement for an IHF binding site and an ftr-enhancer element in spatially transcribed flagellar promoters indicates that a common mechanism may be responsible for both temporal and polar transcription. Images PMID:1392079

  2. Evolution of anterior Hox regulatory elements among chordates

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background The Hox family of transcription factors has a fundamental role in segmentation pathways and axial patterning of embryonic development and their clustered organization is linked with the regulatory mechanisms governing their coordinated expression along embryonic axes. Among chordates, of particular interest are the Hox paralogous genes in groups 1-4 since their expression is coupled to the control of regional identity in the anterior nervous system, where the highest structural diversity is observed. Results To investigate the degree of conservation in cis-regulatory components that form the basis of Hox expression in the anterior nervous system, we have used assays for transcriptional activity in ascidians and vertebrates to compare and contrast regulatory potential. We identified four regulatory sequences located near the CiHox1, CiHox2 and CiHox4 genes of the ascidian Ciona intestinalis which direct neural specific domains of expression. Using functional assays in Ciona and vertebrate embryos in combination with sequence analyses of enhancer fragments located in similar positions adjacent to Hox paralogy group genes, we compared the activity of these four Ciona cis-elements with a series of neural specific enhancers from the amphioxus Hox1-3 genes and from mouse Hox paralogous groups 1-4. Conclusions This analysis revealed that Kreisler and Krox20 dependent enhancers critical in segmental regulation of the hindbrain appear to be specific for the vertebrate lineage. In contrast, neural enhancers that function as Hox response elements through the action of Hox/Pbx binding motifs have been conserved during chordate evolution. The functional assays reveal that these Hox response cis-elements are recognized by the regulatory components of different and extant species. Together, our results indicate that during chordate evolution, cis-elements dependent upon Hox/Pbx regulatory complexes, are responsible for key aspects of segmental Hox expression in neural

  3. Synthetic promoter elements obtained by nucleotide sequence variation and selection for activity

    PubMed Central

    Edelman, Gerald M.; Meech, Robyn; Owens, Geoffrey C.; Jones, Frederick S.

    2000-01-01

    Eukaryotic transcriptional regulation in different cells involves large numbers and arrangements of cis and trans elements. To survey the number of cis regulatory elements that are active in different contexts, we have devised a high-throughput selection procedure permitting synthesis of active cis motifs that enhance the activity of a minimal promoter. This synthetic promoter construction method (SPCM) was used to identify >100 DNA sequences that showed increased promoter activity in the neuroblastoma cell line Neuro2A. After determining DNA sequences of selected synthetic promoters, database searches for known elements revealed a predominance of eight motifs: AP2, CEBP, GRE, Ebox, ETS, CREB, AP1, and SP1/MAZ. The most active of the selected synthetic promoters contain composites of a number of these motifs. Assays of DNA binding and promoter activity of three exemplary motifs (ETS, CREB, and SP1/MAZ) were used to prove the effectiveness of SPCM in uncovering active sequences. Up to 10% of 133 selected active sequences had no match in currently available databases, raising the possibility that new motifs and transcriptional regulatory proteins to which they bind may be revealed by SPCM. The method may find uses in constructing databases of active cis motifs, in diagnostics, and in gene therapy. PMID:10725347

  4. Detection and characterization of regulatory elements using probabilistic conditional random field and hidden Markov models.

    PubMed

    Wang, Hongyan; Zhou, Xiaobo

    2013-04-01

    By altering the electrostatic charge of histones or providing binding sites to protein recognition molecules, Chromatin marks have been proposed to regulate gene expression, a property that has motivated researchers to link these marks to cis-regulatory elements. With the help of next generation sequencing technologies, we can now correlate one specific chromatin mark with regulatory elements (e.g. enhancers or promoters) and also build tools, such as hidden Markov models, to gain insight into mark combinations. However, hidden Markov models have limitation for their character of generative models and assume that a current observation depends only on a current hidden state in the chain. Here, we employed two graphical probabilistic models, namely the linear conditional random field model and multivariate hidden Markov model, to mark gene regions with different states based on recurrent and spatially coherent character of these eight marks. Both models revealed chromatin states that may correspond to enhancers and promoters, transcribed regions, transcriptional elongation, and low-signal regions. We also found that the linear conditional random field model was more effective than the hidden Markov model in recognizing regulatory elements, such as promoter-, enhancer-, and transcriptional elongation-associated regions, which gives us a better choice. PMID:23237214

  5. Conserved elements in Pax6 intron 7 involved in (auto)regulation and alternative transcription.

    PubMed

    Kleinjan, Dirk A; Seawright, Anne; Childs, Andrew J; van Heyningen, Veronica

    2004-01-15

    Pax6 is a transcription factor with an essential role in eye, central nervous system, and pancreas development. Its expression pattern is restricted to these specific domains within the developing embryo. Here four conserved elements are identified in Pax6 intron 7, showing a high level of sequence conservation between human, mouse, pufferfish, and zebrafish. Three of these are shown to act as cis-regulatory elements, directing expression of a reporter gene to distinct subsets of the Pax6 expression domain. CE1 regulates gene expression in late eye development, CE2 drives expression in the diencephalon and in the developing heart tube where Pax6 is not normally expressed, while CE3 directs expression in rhombencephalon. CE2 is shown to be autoregulated in the diencephalon, responding to absence of Pax6. We identify a highly conserved Pax6 recognition site and demonstrate its ability to bind Pax6 specifically. CE1 is embedded in a CpG island, and we identify a novel Pax6 transcript which initiates from this region. Functional analysis of evolutionary conserved sequences pinpoints novel cis-acting elements that govern the regulation of the complex spatio-temporal and quantitative expression of Pax6. PMID:14732405

  6. A novel E2 box-GATA element modulates Cdc6 transcription during human cells polyploidization.

    PubMed

    Vilaboa, Nuria; Bermejo, Rodrigo; Martinez, Pilar; Bornstein, Rafael; Calés, Carmela

    2004-01-01

    Cdc6 is a key regulator of the strict alternation of S and M phases during the mitotic cell cycle. In mammalian and plant cells that physiologically become polyploid, cdc6 is transcriptionally and post-translationally regulated. We have recently reported that Cdc6 levels are maintained in megakaryoblastic HEL cells, but severely downregulated by ectopic expression of transcriptional repressor Drosophila melanogaster escargot. Here, we show that cdc6 promoter activity is upregulated during megakaryocytic differentiation of HEL endoreplicating cells, and that Escargot interferes with such activation. Transactivation experiments showed that a 1.7 kb region located at 2800 upstream cdc6 transcription initiation site behaved as a potent enhancer in endoreplicating cells only. This activity was mainly dependent on a novel cis-regulatory element composed by an E2 box overlapping a GATA motif. Ectopic Escargot could bind this regulatory element in vitro and endogenous GATA-1 and E2A formed specific complexes in megakaryoblastic cells as well as in primary megakaryocytes. Chromatin Immunoprecipitation analysis revealed that both transcription factors were occupying the E2 box/GATA site in vivo. Altogether, these data suggest that cdc6 expression could be actively maintained during megakaryocytic differentiation through transcriptional mechanisms involving specific cis- and trans-regulatory elements. PMID:15590906

  7. Cis-acting elements in its 3' UTR mediate post-transcriptional regulation of KRAS.

    PubMed

    Kim, Minlee; Kogan, Nicole; Slack, Frank J

    2016-03-15

    Multiple RNA-binding proteins and non-coding RNAs, such as microRNAs (miRNAs), are involved in post-transcriptional gene regulation through recognition motifs in the 3' untranslated region (UTR) of their target genes. The KRAS gene encodes a key signaling protein, and its messenger RNA (mRNA) contains an exceptionally long 3' UTR; this suggests that it may be subject to a highly complex set of regulatory processes. However, 3' UTR-dependent regulation of KRAS expression has not been explored in detail. Using extensive deletion and mutational analyses combined with luciferase reporter assays, we have identified inhibitory and stabilizing cis-acting regions within the KRAS 3' UTR that may interact with miRNAs and RNA-binding proteins, such as HuR. Particularly, we have identified an AU-rich 49-nt fragment in the KRAS 3' UTR that is required for KRAS 3' UTR reporter repression. This element contains a miR-185 complementary element, and we show that overexpression of miR-185 represses endogenous KRAS mRNA and protein in vitro. In addition, we have identified another 49-nt fragment that is required to promote KRAS 3' UTR reporter expression. These findings indicate that multiple cis-regulatory motifs in the 3' UTR of KRAS finely modulate its expression, and sequence alterations within a binding motif may disrupt the precise functions of trans-regulatory factors, potentially leading to aberrant KRAS expression. PMID:26930719

  8. PAZAR: a framework for collection and dissemination of cis-regulatory sequence annotation

    PubMed Central

    Portales-Casamar, Elodie; Kirov, Stefan; Lim, Jonathan; Lithwick, Stuart; Swanson, Magdalena I; Ticoll, Amy; Snoddy, Jay; Wasserman, Wyeth W

    2007-01-01

    PAZAR is an open-access and open-source database of transcription factor and regulatory sequence annotation with associated web interface and programming tools for data submission and extraction. Curated boutique data collections can be maintained and disseminated through the unified schema of the mall-like PAZAR repository. The Pleiades Promoter Project collection of brain-linked regulatory sequences is introduced to demonstrate the depth of annotation possible within PAZAR. PAZAR, located at , is open for business. PMID:17916232

  9. A cis-Regulatory Mutation of PDSS2 Causes Silky-Feather in Chickens

    PubMed Central

    Feng, Chungang; Gao, Yu; Dorshorst, Ben; Song, Chi; Gu, Xiaorong; Li, Qingyuan; Li, Jinxiu; Liu, Tongxin; Rubin, Carl-Johan; Zhao, Yiqiang; Wang, Yanqiang; Fei, Jing; Li, Huifang; Chen, Kuanwei; Qu, Hao; Shu, Dingming; Ashwell, Chris; Da, Yang; Andersson, Leif; Hu, Xiaoxiang; Li, Ning

    2014-01-01

    Silky-feather has been selected and fixed in some breeds due to its unique appearance. This phenotype is caused by a single recessive gene (hookless, h). Here we map the silky-feather locus to chromosome 3 by linkage analysis and subsequently fine-map it to an 18.9 kb interval using the identical by descent (IBD) method. Further analysis reveals that a C to G transversion located upstream of the prenyl (decaprenyl) diphosphate synthase, subunit 2 (PDSS2) gene is causing silky-feather. All silky-feather birds are homozygous for the G allele. The silky-feather mutation significantly decreases the expression of PDSS2 during feather development in vivo. Consistent with the regulatory effect, the C to G transversion is shown to remarkably reduce PDSS2 promoter activity in vitro. We report a new example of feather structure variation associated with a spontaneous mutation and provide new insight into the PDSS2 function. PMID:25166907

  10. Correlating Gene Expression Variation with cis-Regulatory Polymorphism in Saccharomyces cerevisiae

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Kevin; van Nimwegen, Erik; Rajewsky, Nikolaus; Siegal, Mark L.

    2010-01-01

    Identifying the nucleotides that cause gene expression variation is a critical step in dissecting the genetic basis of complex traits. Here, we focus on polymorphisms that are predicted to alter transcription factor binding sites (TFBSs) in the yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae. We assembled a confident set of transcription factor motifs using recent protein binding microarray and ChIP-chip data and used our collection of motifs to predict a comprehensive set of TFBSs across the S. cerevisiae genome. We used a population genomics analysis to show that our predictions are accurate and significantly improve on our previous annotation. Although predicting gene expression from sequence is thought to be difficult in general, we identified a subset of genes for which changes in predicted TFBSs correlate well with expression divergence between yeast strains. Our analysis thus demonstrates both the accuracy of our new TFBS predictions and the feasibility of using simple models of gene regulation to causally link differences in gene expression to variation at individual nucleotides. PMID:20829281

  11. Extensive cis-Regulatory Variation Robust to Environmental Perturbation in Arabidopsis[W

    PubMed Central

    Cubillos, Francisco A.; Stegle, Oliver; Grondin, Cécile; Canut, Matthieu; Tisné, Sébastien; Gy, Isabelle

    2014-01-01

    cis- and trans-acting factors affect gene expression and responses to environmental conditions. However, for most plant systems, we lack a comprehensive map of these factors and their interaction with environmental variation. Here, we examined allele-specific expression (ASE) in an F1 hybrid to study how alleles from two Arabidopsis thaliana accessions affect gene expression. To investigate the effect of the environment, we used drought stress and developed a variance component model to estimate the combined genetic contributions of cis- and trans-regulatory polymorphisms, environmental factors, and their interactions. We quantified ASE for 11,003 genes, identifying 3318 genes with consistent ASE in control and stress conditions, demonstrating that cis-acting genetic effects are essentially robust to changes in the environment. Moreover, we found 1618 genes with genotype x environment (GxE) interactions, mostly cis x E interactions with magnitude changes in ASE. We found fewer trans x E interactions, but these effects were relatively less robust across conditions, showing more changes in the direction of the effect between environments; this confirms that trans-regulation plays an important role in the response to environmental conditions. Our data provide a detailed map of cis- and trans-regulation and GxE interactions in A. thaliana, laying the ground for mechanistic investigations and studies in other plants and environments. PMID:25428981

  12. A cis-regulatory mutation of PDSS2 causes silky-feather in chickens.

    PubMed

    Feng, Chungang; Gao, Yu; Dorshorst, Ben; Song, Chi; Gu, Xiaorong; Li, Qingyuan; Li, Jinxiu; Liu, Tongxin; Rubin, Carl-Johan; Zhao, Yiqiang; Wang, Yanqiang; Fei, Jing; Li, Huifang; Chen, Kuanwei; Qu, Hao; Shu, Dingming; Ashwell, Chris; Da, Yang; Andersson, Leif; Hu, Xiaoxiang; Li, Ning

    2014-08-01

    Silky-feather has been selected and fixed in some breeds due to its unique appearance. This phenotype is caused by a single recessive gene (hookless, h). Here we map the silky-feather locus to chromosome 3 by linkage analysis and subsequently fine-map it to an 18.9 kb interval using the identical by descent (IBD) method. Further analysis reveals that a C to G transversion located upstream of the prenyl (decaprenyl) diphosphate synthase, subunit 2 (PDSS2) gene is causing silky-feather. All silky-feather birds are homozygous for the G allele. The silky-feather mutation significantly decreases the expression of PDSS2 during feather development in vivo. Consistent with the regulatory effect, the C to G transversion is shown to remarkably reduce PDSS2 promoter activity in vitro. We report a new example of feather structure variation associated with a spontaneous mutation and provide new insight into the PDSS2 function. PMID:25166907

  13. Evolutionary origin of Rosaceae-specific active non-autonomous hAT elements and their contribution to gene regulation and genomic structural variation.

    PubMed

    Wang, Lu; Peng, Qian; Zhao, Jianbo; Ren, Fei; Zhou, Hui; Wang, Wei; Liao, Liao; Owiti, Albert; Jiang, Quan; Han, Yuepeng

    2016-05-01

    Transposable elements account for approximately 30 % of the Prunus genome; however, their evolutionary origin and functionality remain largely unclear. In this study, we identified a hAT transposon family, termed Moshan, in Prunus. The Moshan elements consist of three types, aMoshan, tMoshan, and mMoshan. The aMoshan and tMoshan types contain intact or truncated transposase genes, respectively, while the mMoshan type is miniature inverted-repeat transposable element (MITE). The Moshan transposons are unique to Rosaceae, and the copy numbers of different Moshan types are significantly correlated. Sequence homology analysis reveals that the mMoshan MITEs are direct deletion derivatives of the tMoshan progenitors, and one kind of mMoshan containing a MuDR-derived fragment were amplified predominately in the peach genome. The mMoshan sequences contain cis-regulatory elements that can enhance gene expression up to 100-fold. The mMoshan MITEs can serve as potential sources of micro and long noncoding RNAs. Whole-genome re-sequencing analysis indicates that mMoshan elements are highly active, and an insertion into S-haplotype-specific F-box gene was reported to cause the breakdown of self-incompatibility in sour cherry. Taken together, all these results suggest that the mMoshan elements play important roles in regulating gene expression and driving genomic structural variation in Prunus. PMID:26941188

  14. Identification of Regulatory DNA Elements Using Genome-wide Mapping of DNase I Hypersensitive Sites during Tomato Fruit Development.

    PubMed

    Qiu, Zhengkun; Li, Ren; Zhang, Shuaibin; Wang, Ketao; Xu, Meng; Li, Jiayang; Du, Yongchen; Yu, Hong; Cui, Xia

    2016-08-01

    Development and ripening of tomato fruit are precisely controlled by transcriptional regulation, which depends on the orchestrated accessibility of regulatory proteins to promoters and other cis-regulatory DNA elements. This accessibility and its effect on gene expression play a major role in defining the developmental process. To understand the regulatory mechanism and functional elements modulating morphological and anatomical changes during fruit development, we generated genome-wide high-resolution maps of DNase I hypersensitive sites (DHSs) from the fruit tissues of the tomato cultivar "Moneymaker" at 20 days post anthesis as well as break stage. By exploring variation of DHSs across fruit development stages, we pinpointed the most likely hypersensitive sites related to development-specific genes. By detecting binding motifs on DHSs of these development-specific genes or genes in the ascorbic acid biosynthetic pathway, we revealed the common regulatory elements contributing to coordinating gene transcription of plant ripening and specialized metabolic pathways. Our results contribute to a better understanding of the regulatory dynamics of genes involved in tomato fruit development and ripening. PMID:27250572

  15. Structure-aided prediction of mammalian transcription factor complexes in conserved non-coding elements.

    PubMed

    Guturu, Harendra; Doxey, Andrew C; Wenger, Aaron M; Bejerano, Gill

    2013-12-19

    Mapping the DNA-binding preferences of transcription factor (TF) complexes is critical for deciphering the functions of cis-regulatory elements. Here, we developed a computational method that compares co-occurring motif spacings in conserved versus unconserved regions of the human genome to detect evolutionarily constrained binding sites of rigid TF complexes. Structural data were used to estimate TF complex physical plausibility, explore overlapping motif arrangements seldom tackled by non-structure-aware methods, and generate and analyse three-dimensional models of the predicted complexes bound to DNA. Using this approach, we predicted 422 physically realistic TF complex motifs at 18% false discovery rate, the majority of which (326, 77%) contain some sequence overlap between binding sites. The set of mostly novel complexes is enriched in known composite motifs, predictive of binding site configurations in TF-TF-DNA crystal structures, and supported by ChIP-seq datasets. Structural modelling revealed three cooperativity mechanisms: direct protein-protein interactions, potentially indirect interactions and 'through-DNA' interactions. Indeed, 38% of the predicted complexes were found to contain four or more bases in which TF pairs appear to synergize through overlapping binding to the same DNA base pairs in opposite grooves or strands. Our TF complex and associated binding site predictions are available as a web resource at http://bejerano.stanford.edu/complex. PMID:24218641

  16. Identification of cis- and trans-acting elements regulating calretinin expression in mesothelioma cells

    PubMed Central

    Kresoja-Rakic, Jelena; Kapaklikaya, Esra; Ziltener, Gabriela; Dalcher, Damian; Santoro, Raffaella; Christensen, Brock C.; Johnson, Kevin C.; Schwaller, Beat; Weder, Walter; Stahel, Rolf A.; Felley-Bosco, Emanuela

    2016-01-01

    Calretinin (CALB2) is a diagnostic marker for epithelioid mesothelioma. It is also a prognostic marker since patients with tumors expressing high calretinin levels have better overall survival. Silencing of calretinin decreases viability of epithelioid mesothelioma cells. Our aim was to elucidate mechanisms regulating calretinin expression in mesothelioma. Analysis of calretinin transcript and protein suggested a control at the mRNA level. Treatment with 5-aza-2′-deoxycytidine and analysis of TCGA data indicated that promoter methylation is not likely to be involved. Therefore, we investigated CALB2 promoter by analyzing ~1kb of genomic sequence surrounding the transcription start site (TSS) + 1 using promoter reporter assay. Deletion analysis of CALB2 proximal promoter showed that sequence spanning the −161/+80bp region sustained transcriptional activity. Site-directed analysis identified important cis-regulatory elements within this −161/+80bp CALB2 promoter. EMSA and ChIP assays confirmed binding of NRF-1 and E2F2 to the CALB2 promoter and siRNA knockdown of NRF-1 led to decreased expression of calretinin. Cell synchronization experiment showed that calretinin expression was cell cycle regulated with a peak of expression at G1/S phase. This study provides the first insight in the regulation of CALB2 expression in mesothelioma cells. PMID:26848772

  17. Bisphenol A activates the Nrf1/2-antioxidant response element pathway in HEK 293 cells.

    PubMed

    Chepelev, Nikolai L; Enikanolaiye, Mutiat I; Chepelev, Leonid L; Almohaisen, Abdulrahman; Chen, Qixuan; Scoggan, Kylie A; Coughlan, Melanie C; Cao, Xu-Liang; Jin, Xiaolei; Willmore, William G

    2013-03-18

    Bisphenol A (BPA) is used in the production of polycarbonate plastics and epoxy resins for baby bottles, liners of canned food, and many other consumer products. Previously, BPA has been shown to reduce the activity of several antioxidant enzymes, which may contribute to oxidative stress. However, the underlying mechanism of the BPA-mediated effect upon antioxidant enzyme activity is unknown. Antioxidant and phase II metabolizing enzymes protect cells from oxidative stress and are transcriptionally activated by Nrf1 and Nrf2 factors through their cis-regulatory antioxidant response elements (AREs). In this work, we have assessed the effect of BPA on the Nrf1/2-ARE pathway in cultured human embryonic kidney (HEK) 293 cells. Surprisingly, glutathione and reactive oxygen species (ROS) assays revealed that BPA application created a more reduced intracellular environment in cultured HEK 293 cells. Furthermore, BPA increased the transactivation activity of ectopic Nrf1 and Nrf2 and increased the expression of ARE-target genes ho-1 and nqo1 at high (100-200 μM) BPA concentrations only. Our study suggests that BPA activates the Nrf1/2-ARE pathway at high (>10 μM) micromolar concentrations. PMID:23360430

  18. Genetic Changes to a Transcriptional Silencer Element Confers Phenotypic Diversity within and between Drosophila Species

    PubMed Central

    Watada, Masayoshi; Pruitt, Jonathan N.; Williams, Thomas M.; Rebeiz, Mark

    2015-01-01

    The modification of transcriptional regulation has become increasingly appreciated as a major contributor to morphological evolution. However, the role of negative-acting control elements (e.g. silencers) in generating morphological diversity has been generally overlooked relative to positive-acting “enhancer” elements. The highly variable body coloration patterns among Drosophilid insects represents a powerful model system in which the molecular alterations that underlie phenotypic diversity can be defined. In a survey of pigment phenotypes among geographically disparate Japanese populations of Drosophila auraria, we discovered a remarkable degree of variation in male-specific abdominal coloration. In testing the expression patterns of the major pigment-producing enzymes, we found that phenotypes uniquely correlated with differences in the expression of ebony, a gene required for yellow-colored cuticle. Assays of ebony’s transcriptional control region indicated that a lightly pigmented strain harbored cis-regulatory mutations that caused correlated changes in its expression. Through a series of chimeric reporter constructs between light and dark strain alleles, we localized function-altering mutations to a conserved silencer that mediates a male-specific pattern of ebony repression. This suggests that the light allele was derived through the loss of this silencer’s activity. Furthermore, examination of the ebony gene of D. serrata, a close relative of D. auraria which secondarily lost male-specific pigmentation revealed the parallel loss of this silencer element. These results demonstrate how loss-of-function mutations in a silencer element resulted in increased gene expression. We propose that the mutational inactivation of silencer elements may represent a favored path to evolve gene expression, impacting morphological traits. PMID:26115430

  19. Reciprocal Loss of CArG-Boxes and Auxin Response Elements Drives Expression Divergence of MPF2-Like MADS-Box Genes Controlling Calyx Inflation

    PubMed Central

    Khan, Muhammad Ramzan; Hu, Jinyong; Ali, Ghulam Muhammad

    2012-01-01

    Expression divergence is thought to be a hallmark of functional diversification between homologs post duplication. Modification in regulatory elements has been invoked to explain expression divergence after duplication for several MADS-box genes, however, verification of reciprocal loss of cis-regulatory elements is lacking in plants. Here, we report that the evolution of MPF2-like genes has entailed degenerative mutations in a core promoter CArG-box and an auxin response factor (ARF) binding element in the large 1st intron in the coding region. Previously, MPF2-like genes were duplicated into MPF2-like-A and -B through genome duplication in Withania and Tubocapsicum (Withaninae). The calyx of Withania grows exorbitantly after pollination unlike Tubocapsicum, where it degenerates. Besides inflated calyx syndrome formation, MPF2-like transcription factors are implicated in functions both during the vegetative and reproductive development as well as in phase transition. MPF2-like-A of Withania (WSA206) is strongly expressed in sepals, while MPF2-like-B (WSB206) is not. Interestingly, their combined expression patterns seem to replicate the pattern of their closely related hypothetical progenitors from Vassobia and Physalis. Using phylogenetic shadowing, site-directed mutagenesis and motif swapping, we could show that the loss of a conserved CArG-box in MPF2-like-B of Withania is responsible for impeding its expression in sepals. Conversely, loss of an ARE in MPF2-like-A relaxed the constraint on expression in sepals. Thus, the ARE is an active suppressor of MPF2-like gene expression in sepals, which in contrast is activated via the CArG-box. The observed expression divergence in MPF2-like genes due to reciprocal loss of cis-regulatory elements has added to genetic and phenotypic variations in the Withaninae and enhanced the potential of natural selection for the adaptive evolution of ICS. Moreover, these results provide insight into the interplay of floral

  20. An ultraconserved Hox–Pbx responsive element resides in the coding sequence of Hoxa2 and is active in rhombomere 4

    PubMed Central

    Lampe, Xavier; Samad, Omar Abdel; Guiguen, Allan; Matis, Christelle; Remacle, Sophie; Picard, Jacques J.; Rezsohazy, René

    2008-01-01

    The Hoxa2 gene has a fundamental role in vertebrate craniofacial and hindbrain patterning. Segmental control of Hoxa2 expression is crucial to its function and several studies have highlighted transcriptional regulatory elements governing its activity in distinct rhombomeres. Here, we identify a putative Hox–Pbx responsive cis-regulatory sequence, which resides in the coding sequence of Hoxa2 and is an important component of Hoxa2 regulation in rhombomere (r) 4. By using cell transfection and chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) assays, we show that this regulatory sequence is responsive to paralogue group 1 and 2 Hox proteins and to their Pbx co-factors. Importantly, we also show that the Hox–Pbx element cooperates with a previously reported Hoxa2 r4 intronic enhancer and that its integrity is required to drive specific reporter gene expression in r4 upon electroporation in the chick embryo hindbrain. Thus, both intronic as well as exonic regulatory sequences are involved in Hoxa2 segmental regulation in the developing r4. Finally, we found that the Hox–Pbx exonic element is embedded in a larger 205-bp long ultraconserved genomic element (UCE) shared by all vertebrate genomes. In this respect, our data further support the idea that extreme conservation of UCE sequences may be the result of multiple superposed functional and evolutionary constraints. PMID:18417536

  1. Evolutionary dynamics of transposable elements in the short-tailed opossum Monodelphis domestica

    PubMed Central

    Gentles, Andrew J.; Wakefield, Matthew J.; Kohany, Oleksiy; Gu, Wanjun; Batzer, Mark A.; Pollock, David D.; Jurka, Jerzy

    2007-01-01

    The genome of the gray short-tailed opossum Monodelphis domestica is notable for its large size (∼3.6 Gb). We characterized nearly 500 families of interspersed repeats from the Monodelphis. They cover ∼52% of the genome, higher than in any other amniotic lineage studied to date, and may account for the unusually large genome size. In comparison to other mammals, Monodelphis is significantly rich in non-LTR retrotransposons from the LINE-1, CR1, and RTE families, with >29% of the genome sequence comprised of copies of these elements. Monodelphis has at least four families of RTE, and we report support for horizontal transfer of this non-LTR retrotransposon. In addition to short interspersed elements (SINEs) mobilized by L1, we found several families of SINEs that appear to use RTE elements for mobilization. In contrast to L1-mobilized SINEs, the RTE-mobilized SINEs in Monodelphis appear to shift from G+C-rich to G+C-low regions with time. Endogenous retroviruses have colonized ∼10% of the opossum genome. We found that their density is enhanced in centromeric and/or telomeric regions of most Monodelphis chromosomes. We identified 83 new families of ancient repeats that are highly conserved across amniotic lineages, including 14 LINE-derived repeats; and a novel SINE element, MER131, that may have been exapted as a highly conserved functional noncoding RNA, and whose emergence dates back to ∼300 million years ago. Many of these conserved repeats are also present in human, and are highly over-represented in predicted cis-regulatory modules. Seventy-six of the 83 families are present in chicken in addition to mammals. PMID:17495012

  2. ATTED-II: a database of co-expressed genes and cis elements for identifying co-regulated gene groups in Arabidopsis

    PubMed Central

    Obayashi, Takeshi; Kinoshita, Kengo; Nakai, Kenta; Shibaoka, Masayuki; Hayashi, Shinpei; Saeki, Motoshi; Shibata, Daisuke; Saito, Kazuki; Ohta, Hiroyuki

    2007-01-01

    Publicly available database of co-expressed gene sets would be a valuable tool for a wide variety of experimental designs, including targeting of genes for functional identification or for regulatory investigation. Here, we report the construction of an Arabidopsis thaliana trans-factor and cis-element prediction database (ATTED-II) that provides co-regulated gene relationships based on co-expressed genes deduced from microarray data and the predicted cis elements. ATTED-II () includes the following features: (i) lists and networks of co-expressed genes calculated from 58 publicly available experimental series, which are composed of 1388 GeneChip data in A.thaliana; (ii) prediction of cis-regulatory elements in the 200 bp region upstream of the transcription start site to predict co-regulated genes amongst the co-expressed genes; and (iii) visual representation of expression patterns for individual genes. ATTED-II can thus help researchers to clarify the function and regulation of particular genes and gene networks. PMID:17130150

  3. Characterization of oocyte-expressed GDF9 gene in buffalo and mapping of its TSS and putative regulatory elements.

    PubMed

    Roy, B; Rajput, S; Raghav, S; Kumar, P; Verma, A; Jain, A; Jain, T; Singh, D; De, S; Goswami, S L; Datta, T K

    2013-05-01

    Summary In spite of emerging evidence about the vital role of GDF9 in determination of oocyte competence, there is insufficient information about its regulation of oocyte-specific expression, particularly in livestock animals. Because of the distinct prominence of buffalo as a dairy animal, the present study was undertaken to isolate and characterize GDF9 cDNA using orthologous primers based on the bovine GDF9 sequence. GDF9 transcripts were found to be expressed in oocytes irrespective of their follicular origin, and shared a single transcription start site (TSS) at -57 base pairs (bp) upstream of ATG. Assignment of the TSS is consistent with the presence of a TATA element at -23 of the TSS mapped in this study. Localization of a buffalo-specific minimal promoter within 320 bp upstream of ATG was consolidated by identification of an E-box element at -113bp. Presence of putative transcription factor binding sites and other cis regulatory elements were analyzed at ~5 kb upstream of TSS. Various germ cell-specific cis-acting regulatory elements (BNCF, BRNF, NR2F, SORY, Foxh1, OCT1, LHXF etc.) have been identified in the 5' flanking region of the buffalo GDF9 gene, including NOBOX DNA binding elements and consensuses E-boxes (CANNTG). Presence of two conserved E-boxes found on buffalo sequence at -520 and -718 positions deserves attention in view of its sequence deviation from other species. Two NOBOX binding elements (NBE) were detected at the -3471 and -203 positions. The fall of the NBE within the putative minimal promoter territory of buffalo GDF9 and its unique non-core binding sequence could have a possible role in the control of the core promoter activity. PMID:22230197

  4. Oxidative Stress Regulates CFTR Gene Expression in Human Airway Epithelial Cells through a Distal Antioxidant Response Element

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Zhaolin; Leir, Shih-Hsing

    2015-01-01

    Cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator gene (CFTR) expression in human airway epithelial cells involves the recruitment of distal cis-regulatory elements, which are associated with airway-selective DNase hypersensitive sites at −44 kb and −35 kb from the gene. The −35-kb site encompasses an enhancer that is regulated by the immune mediators interferon regulatory factor 1 and 2 and by nuclear factor Y. Here we investigate the −44-kb element, which also has enhancer activity in vitro in airway epithelial cells but is inactive in intestinal epithelial cells. This site contains an antioxidant response element (ARE) that plays a critical role in its function in airway cell lines and primary human bronchial epithelial cells. The natural antioxidant sulforaphane (SFN) induces nuclear translocation of nuclear factor, erythroid 2-like 2 (Nrf2), a transcription factor that regulates genes with AREs in their promoters, many of which are involved in response to injury. Under normal conditions, the −44-kb ARE is occupied by the repressor BTB and CNC homology 1, basic leucine zipper transcription factor (Bach1), and v-Maf avian musculoaponeurotic fibrosarcoma oncogene homolog K (MafK) heterodimers. After 2 hours of SFN treatment, Nrf2 displaces these repressive factors and activates CFTR expression. Site-directed mutagenesis shows that both the ARE and an adjacent NF-κB binding site are required for activation of the –44-kb element in airway epithelial cells. Moreover, this element is functionally linked to the −35-kb enhancer in modulating CFTR expression in response to environmental stresses in the airway. PMID:25259561

  5. Functional characterization of transcriptional regulatory elements in the upstream region and intron 1 of the human S6 ribosomal protein gene.

    PubMed Central

    Antoine, M; Kiefer, P

    1998-01-01

    Expression of housekeeping genes involves regulation at comparable levels in a wide spectrum of cells. To define the cis-regulatory elements in the human S6 ribosomal protein (rpS6) gene, we made a series of deletions of the upstream non-transcribed region, including or excluding exon 1 or intron 1 sequences. The mutated rpS6 gene regulatory regions were fused to the chloramphenicol acetyltransferase reporter gene and transfected into HeLa and COS-1 cells. The results have identified three parts of the rpS6 gene that are required for efficient and specific transcription. The core promoter includes only a 40 bp region upstream of the transcription start site and initiation region. Both upstream and intronic elements enhance transcription from the core promoter. Furthermore, mutation of the splice donor site of intron 1 almost completely abolished the enhancing activity of the intronic transcriptional modulator. We used gel retardation assays to identify sequence-specific binding sites in the upstream region and in the proximal half of intron 1. Both common and different nuclear factors that bind the rpS6 gene promoter were identified in extracts from HeLa and COS-1 cells, suggesting that different transcription factors may bind specifically to the same binding region and might be interchangeable in their function to ensure high-level expression of housekeeping genes independently of the cell type. PMID:9820808

  6. It's elemental

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    The Periodic Table of the elements will now have to be updated. An international team of researchers has added element 110 to the Earth's armory of elements. Though short-lived—of the order of microseconds, element 110 bottoms out the list as the heaviest known element on the planet. Scientists at the Heavy Ion Research Center in Darmstadt, Germany, made the 110-proton element by colliding a lead isotope with nickel atoms. The element, which is yet to be named, has an atomic mass of 269.

  7. Human Papillomavirus Type 18 cis-Elements Crucial for Segregation and Latency.

    PubMed

    Ustav, Mart; Castaneda, Fernando Rodriguez; Reinson, Tormi; Männik, Andres; Ustav, Mart

    2015-01-01

    Stable maintenance replication is characteristic of the latency phase of HPV infection, during which the viral genomes are actively maintained as extrachromosomal genetic elements in infected proliferating basal keratinocytes. Active replication in the S-phase and segregation of the genome into daughter cells in mitosis are required for stable maintenance replication. Most of our knowledge about papillomavirus genome segregation has come from studies of bovine papillomavirus type 1 (BPV-1), which have demonstrated that the E2 protein cooperates with cellular trans-factors and that E2 binding sites act as cis-regulatory elements in the viral genome that are essential for the segregation process. However, the genomic organization of the regulatory region in HPVs, and the properties of the viral proteins are different from those of their BPV-1 counterparts. We have designed a segregation assay for HPV-18 and used it to demonstrate that the E2 protein performs segregation in combination with at least two E2 binding sites. The cooperative binding of the E2 protein to two E2 binding sites is a major determinant of HPV-18 genome segregation, as demonstrated by the change in spacing between adjacent binding sites #1 and #2 in the HPV-18 Upstream Regulatory Region (URR). Duplication or triplication of the natural 4 bp 5'-CGGG-3' spacer between the E2 binding sites increased the cooperative binding of the E2 molecules as well as E2-dependent segregation. Removal of any spacing between these sites eliminated cooperative binding of the E2 protein and disabled segregation of the URR and HPV-18 genome. Transfer of these configurations of the E2 binding sites into viral genomes confirmed the role of the E2 protein and binding sites #1 and #2 in the segregation process. Additional analysis demonstrated that these sites also play an important role in the transcriptional regulation of viral gene expression from different HPV-18 promoters. PMID:26288015

  8. Human Papillomavirus Type 18 cis-Elements Crucial for Segregation and Latency

    PubMed Central

    Ustav, Mart; Castaneda, Fernando Rodriguez; Reinson, Tormi; Männik, Andres; Ustav, Mart

    2015-01-01

    Stable maintenance replication is characteristic of the latency phase of HPV infection, during which the viral genomes are actively maintained as extrachromosomal genetic elements in infected proliferating basal keratinocytes. Active replication in the S-phase and segregation of the genome into daughter cells in mitosis are required for stable maintenance replication. Most of our knowledge about papillomavirus genome segregation has come from studies of bovine papillomavirus type 1 (BPV-1), which have demonstrated that the E2 protein cooperates with cellular trans-factors and that E2 binding sites act as cis-regulatory elements in the viral genome that are essential for the segregation process. However, the genomic organization of the regulatory region in HPVs, and the properties of the viral proteins are different from those of their BPV-1 counterparts. We have designed a segregation assay for HPV-18 and used it to demonstrate that the E2 protein performs segregation in combination with at least two E2 binding sites. The cooperative binding of the E2 protein to two E2 binding sites is a major determinant of HPV-18 genome segregation, as demonstrated by the change in spacing between adjacent binding sites #1 and #2 in the HPV-18 Upstream Regulatory Region (URR). Duplication or triplication of the natural 4 bp 5’-CGGG-3’ spacer between the E2 binding sites increased the cooperative binding of the E2 molecules as well as E2-dependent segregation. Removal of any spacing between these sites eliminated cooperative binding of the E2 protein and disabled segregation of the URR and HPV-18 genome. Transfer of these configurations of the E2 binding sites into viral genomes confirmed the role of the E2 protein and binding sites #1 and #2 in the segregation process. Additional analysis demonstrated that these sites also play an important role in the transcriptional regulation of viral gene expression from different HPV-18 promoters. PMID:26288015

  9. Cis-acting elements in its 3′ UTR mediate post-transcriptional regulation of KRAS

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Minlee; Kogan, Nicole; Slack, Frank J.

    2016-01-01

    Multiple RNA-binding proteins and non-coding RNAs, such as microRNAs (miRNAs), are involved in post-transcriptional gene regulation through recognition motifs in the 3′ untranslated region (UTR) of their target genes. The KRAS gene encodes a key signaling protein, and its messenger RNA (mRNA) contains an exceptionally long 3′ UTR; this suggests that it may be subject to a highly complex set of regulatory processes. However, 3′ UTR-dependent regulation of KRAS expression has not been explored in detail. Using extensive deletion and mutational analyses combined with luciferase reporter assays, we have identified inhibitory and stabilizing cis-acting regions within the KRAS 3′ UTR that may interact with miRNAs and RNA-binding proteins, such as HuR. Particularly, we have identified an AU-rich 49-nt fragment in the KRAS 3′ UTR that is required for KRAS 3′ UTR reporter repression. This element contains a miR-185 complementary element, and we show that overexpression of miR-185 represses endogenous KRAS mRNA and protein in vitro. In addition, we have identified another 49-nt fragment that is required to promote KRAS 3′ UTR reporter expression. These findings indicate that multiple cis-regulatory motifs in the 3′ UTR of KRAS finely modulate its expression, and sequence alterations within a binding motif may disrupt the precise functions of trans-regulatory factors, potentially leading to aberrant KRAS expression. PMID:26930719

  10. A role for palindromic structures in the cis-region of maize Sirevirus LTRs in transposable element evolution and host epigenetic response

    PubMed Central

    Bousios, Alexandros; Diez, Concepcion M.; Takuno, Shohei; Bystry, Vojtech; Darzentas, Nikos; Gaut, Brandon S.

    2016-01-01

    Transposable elements (TEs) proliferate within the genome of their host, which responds by silencing them epigenetically. Much is known about the mechanisms of silencing in plants, particularly the role of siRNAs in guiding DNA methylation. In contrast, little is known about siRNA targeting patterns along the length of TEs, yet this information may provide crucial insights into the dynamics between hosts and TEs. By focusing on 6456 carefully annotated, full-length Sirevirus LTR retrotransposons in maize, we show that their silencing associates with underlying characteristics of the TE sequence and also uncover three features of the host–TE interaction. First, siRNA mapping varies among families and among elements, but particularly along the length of elements. Within the cis-regulatory portion of the LTRs, a complex palindrome-rich region acts as a hotspot of both siRNA matching and sequence evolution. These patterns are consistent across leaf, tassel, and immature ear libraries, but particularly emphasized for floral tissues and 21- to 22-nt siRNAs. Second, this region has the ability to form hairpins, making it a potential template for the production of miRNA-like, hairpin-derived small RNAs. Third, Sireviruses are targeted by siRNAs as a decreasing function of their age, but the oldest elements remain highly targeted, partially by siRNAs that cross-map to the youngest elements. We show that the targeting of older Sireviruses reflects their conserved palindromes. Altogether, we hypothesize that the palindromes aid the silencing of active elements and influence transposition potential, siRNA targeting levels, and ultimately the fate of an element within the genome. PMID:26631490