Science.gov

Sample records for genetically engineered animals

  1. Commercialising genetically engineered animal biomedical products.

    PubMed

    Sullivan, Eddie J; Pommer, Jerry; Robl, James M

    2008-01-01

    Research over the past two decades has increased the quality and quantity of tools available to produce genetically engineered animals. The number of potentially viable biomedical products from genetically engineered animals is increasing. However, moving from cutting-edge research to development and commercialisation of a biomedical product that is useful and wanted by the public has significant challenges. Even early stage development of genetically engineered animal applications requires consideration of many steps, including quality assurance and quality control, risk management, gap analysis, founder animal establishment, cell banking, sourcing of animals and animal-derived material, animal facilities, product collection facilities and processing facilities. These steps are complicated and expensive. Biomedical applications of genetically engineered animals have had some recent successes and many applications are well into development. As researchers consider applications for their findings, having a realistic understanding of the steps involved in the development and commercialisation of a product, produced in genetically engineered animals, is useful in determining the risk of genetic modification to the animal nu. the potential public benefit of the application. PMID:18154699

  2. Commodifying animals: ethical issues in genetic engineering of animals.

    PubMed

    Almond, B

    2000-03-01

    The genetic modification of living beings raises special ethical concerns which go beyond general discussion of animal rights or welfare. Although the goals may be similar, biotechnology has accelerated the process of modification of types traditionally carried out by cross-breeding. These changes are discussed in relation to two areas: biomedicine, and animal husbandry. Alternative ethical approaches are reviewed, and it is argued that the teleological thesis underlying virtue ethics has special relevance here. The case for and the case against genetic engineering and patenting of life-forms are examined, and conclusions are drawn which favour regulation, caution and respect for animals and animal species. PMID:15080125

  3. Genetic Engineering of Animals for Medical Research: Students' Views.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hill, Ruaraidh; Stanisstreet, Martin; O'Sullivan, Helen; Boyes, Edward

    1999-01-01

    Reports on the results of a survey meant to ascertain the views of 16- to 18-year-old students (n=778) on using animals in medical research. Suggests that students have no greater objection to the use of genetically engineered animals over naturally bred animals in medical research. Contains 16 references. (Author/WRM)

  4. Exogenous enzymes upgrade transgenesis and genetic engineering of farm animals.

    PubMed

    Bosch, Pablo; Forcato, Diego O; Alustiza, Fabrisio E; Alessio, Ana P; Fili, Alejandro E; Olmos Nicotra, Mara F; Liaudat, Ana C; Rodrguez, Nancy; Talluri, Thirumala R; Kues, Wilfried A

    2015-05-01

    Transgenic farm animals are attractive alternative mammalian models to rodents for the study of developmental, genetic, reproductive and disease-related biological questions, as well for the production of recombinant proteins, or the assessment of xenotransplants for human patients. Until recently, the ability to generate transgenic farm animals relied on methods of passive transgenesis. In recent years, significant improvements have been made to introduce and apply active techniques of transgenesis and genetic engineering in these species. These new approaches dramatically enhance the ease and speed with which livestock species can be genetically modified, and allow to performing precise genetic modifications. This paper provides a synopsis of enzyme-mediated genetic engineering in livestock species covering the early attempts employing naturally occurring DNA-modifying proteins to recent approaches working with tailored enzymatic systems. PMID:25636347

  5. Genetic Engineering

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Phillips, John

    1973-01-01

    Presents a review of genetic engineering, in which the genotypes of plants and animals (including human genotypes) may be manipulated for the benefit of the human species. Discusses associated problems and solutions and provides an extensive bibliography of literature relating to genetic engineering. (JR)

  6. Genetic Engineering of Dystroglycan in Animal Models of Muscular Dystrophy

    PubMed Central

    Sciandra, Francesca; Bigotti, Maria Giulia; Giardina, Bruno; Bozzi, Manuela; Brancaccio, Andrea

    2015-01-01

    In skeletal muscle, dystroglycan (DG) is the central component of the dystrophin-glycoprotein complex (DGC), a multimeric protein complex that ensures a strong mechanical link between the extracellular matrix and the cytoskeleton. Several muscular dystrophies arise from mutations hitting most of the components of the DGC. Mutations within the DG gene (DAG1) have been recently associated with two forms of muscular dystrophy, one displaying a milder and one a more severe phenotype. This review focuses specifically on the animal (murine and others) model systems that have been developed with the aim of directly engineering DAG1 in order to study the DG function in skeletal muscle as well as in other tissues. In the last years, conditional animal models overcoming the embryonic lethality of the DG knock-out in mouse have been generated and helped clarifying the crucial role of DG in skeletal muscle, while an increasing number of studies on knock-in mice are aimed at understanding the contribution of single amino acids to the stability of DG and to the possible development of muscular dystrophy. PMID:26380289

  7. Telos, conservation of welfare, and ethical issues in genetic engineering of animals.

    PubMed

    Rollin, Bernard E

    2015-01-01

    The most long-lived metaphysics or view of reality in the history of Western thought is Aristotle's teleology, which reigned for almost 2,000 years. Biology was expressed in terms of function or telos, and accorded perfectly with common sense. The rise of mechanistic, Newtonian science vanquished teleological explanations. Understanding and accommodating animal telos was essential to success in animal husbandry, which involved respect for telos, and was presuppositional to our "ancient contract" with domestic animals. Telos was further abandoned with the rise of industrial agriculture, which utilized "technological fixes" to force animal into environments they were unsuited for, while continuing to be productive. Loss of husbandry and respect for telos created major issues for farm animal welfare, and forced the creation of a new ethic demanding respect for telos. As genetic engineering developed, the notion arose of modifying animals to fit their environment in order to avoid animal suffering, rather than fitting them into congenial environments. Most people do not favor changing the animals, rather than changing the conditions under which they are reared. Aesthetic appreciation of husbandry and virtue ethics militate in favor of restoring husbandry, rather than radically changing animal teloi. One, however, does not morally wrong teloi by changing them-one can only wrong individuals. In biomedical research, we do indeed inflict major pain, suffering and disease on animals. And genetic engineering seems to augment our ability to create animals to model diseases, particularly more than 3,000 known human genetic diseases. The disease, known as Lesch-Nyhan's syndrome or HPRT deficiency, which causes self-mutilation and mental retardation, provides us with a real possibility for genetically creating "animal models" of this disease, animals doomed to a life of great and unalleviable suffering. This of course creates a major moral dilemma. Perhaps one can use the very genetic engineering which creates this dilemma to ablate consciousness in such animal models, thereby escaping a moral impasse. PMID:24496650

  8. Genetically engineered foods

    MedlinePLUS

    ... animals Food with more desirable traits, such as potatoes that absorb less fat when fried Medicinal foods ... Tomatoes, potatoes, squash, corn, and soybeans have been genetically altered through biotechnology. Many more foods contain engineered ingredients and ...

  9. Genetically engineering milk.

    PubMed

    Whitelaw, C Bruce A; Joshi, Akshay; Kumar, Satish; Lillico, Simon G; Proudfoot, Chris

    2016-02-01

    It has been thirty years since the first genetically engineered animal with altered milk composition was reported. During the intervening years, the world population has increased from 5bn to 7bn people. An increasing demand for protein in the human diet has followed this population expansion, putting huge stress on the food supply chain. Many solutions to the grand challenge of food security for all have been proposed and are currently under investigation and study. Amongst these, genetics still has an important role to play, aiming to continually enable the selection of livestock with enhanced traits. Part of the geneticist's tool box is the technology of genetic engineering. In this Invited Review, we indicate that this technology has come a long way, we focus on the genetic engineering of dairy animals and we argue that the new strategies for precision breeding demand proper evaluation as to how they could contribute to the essential increases in agricultural productivity our society must achieve. PMID:26869106

  10. Genetic engineering in biotechnology

    SciTech Connect

    Bedate, C.A.; Morales, J.C.; Lopez, E.H.

    1981-09-01

    The objective of this book is to encourage the use of genetic engineering for economic development. The report covers: (1) Precedents of genetic engineering; (2) a brief description of the technology, including the transfer of DNA in bacteria (vectors, E. coli and B. subtilis hosts, stages, and technical problems), practical examples of techniques used and their products (interferon; growth hormone; insulin; treatment of blood cells, Talasemia, and Lesch-Nyhan syndrome; and more nutritious soya), transfer to higher organisms, and cellular fusion; (3) biological risks and precautions; (4) possible applications (production of hydrogen, hydrocarbons, alcohol, chemicals, enzymes, peptides, viral antigens, monoclonal antibodies, genes, proteins, and insecticides; metal extraction; nitrogen fixation; biodegradation; and new varieties of plants and animals; and (5) international activities.

  11. Genetically engineered flavonol enriched tomato fruit modulates chondrogenesis to increase bone length in growing animals

    PubMed Central

    Choudhary, Dharmendra; Pandey, Ashutosh; Adhikary, Sulekha; Ahmad, Naseer; Bhatia, Chitra; Bhambhani, Sweta; Trivedi, Prabodh Kumar; Trivedi, Ritu

    2016-01-01

    Externally visible body and longitudinal bone growth is a result of proliferation of chondrocytes. In growth disorder, there is delay in the age associated increase in height. The present study evaluates the effect of extract from transgenic tomato fruit expressing AtMYB12 transcription factor on bone health including longitudinal growth. Constitutive expression of AtMYB12 in tomato led to a significantly enhanced biosynthesis of flavonoids in general and the flavonol biosynthesis in particular. Pre-pubertal ovary intact BALB/c mice received daily oral administration of vehicle and ethanolic extract of wild type (WT-TOM) and transgenic AtMYB12-tomato (MYB12-TOM) fruits for six weeks. Animal fed with MYB12-TOM showed no inflammation in hepatic tissues and normal sinusoidal Kupffer cell morphology. MYB12-TOM extract significantly increased tibial and femoral growth and subsequently improved the bone length as compared to vehicle and WT-TOM. Histomorphometry exhibited significantly wider distal femoral and proximal tibial growth plate, increased number and size of hypertrophic chondrocytes in MYB12-TOM which corroborated with micro-CT and expression of BMP-2 and COL-10, marker genes for hypertrophic cells. We conclude that metabolic reprogramming of tomato by AtMYB12 has the potential to improve longitudinal bone growth thus helping in achievement of greater peak bone mass during adolescence. PMID:26917158

  12. Genetically engineered flavonol enriched tomato fruit modulates chondrogenesis to increase bone length in growing animals.

    PubMed

    Choudhary, Dharmendra; Pandey, Ashutosh; Adhikary, Sulekha; Ahmad, Naseer; Bhatia, Chitra; Bhambhani, Sweta; Trivedi, Prabodh Kumar; Trivedi, Ritu

    2016-01-01

    Externally visible body and longitudinal bone growth is a result of proliferation of chondrocytes. In growth disorder, there is delay in the age associated increase in height. The present study evaluates the effect of extract from transgenic tomato fruit expressing AtMYB12 transcription factor on bone health including longitudinal growth. Constitutive expression of AtMYB12 in tomato led to a significantly enhanced biosynthesis of flavonoids in general and the flavonol biosynthesis in particular. Pre-pubertal ovary intact BALB/c mice received daily oral administration of vehicle and ethanolic extract of wild type (WT-TOM) and transgenic AtMYB12-tomato (MYB12-TOM) fruits for six weeks. Animal fed with MYB12-TOM showed no inflammation in hepatic tissues and normal sinusoidal Kupffer cell morphology. MYB12-TOM extract significantly increased tibial and femoral growth and subsequently improved the bone length as compared to vehicle and WT-TOM. Histomorphometry exhibited significantly wider distal femoral and proximal tibial growth plate, increased number and size of hypertrophic chondrocytes in MYB12-TOM which corroborated with micro-CT and expression of BMP-2 and COL-10, marker genes for hypertrophic cells. We conclude that metabolic reprogramming of tomato by AtMYB12 has the potential to improve longitudinal bone growth thus helping in achievement of greater peak bone mass during adolescence. PMID:26917158

  13. The new CRISPR-Cas system: RNA-guided genome engineering to efficiently produce any desired genetic alteration in animals.

    PubMed

    Seruggia, Davide; Montoliu, Lluis

    2014-10-01

    The CRISPR-Cas system is the newest targeted nuclease for genome engineering. In less than 1year, the ease, robustness and efficiency of this method have facilitated an immense range of genetic modifications in most model organisms. Full and conditional gene knock-outs, knock-ins, large chromosomal deletions and subtle mutations can be obtained using combinations of clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPRs) and DNA donors. In addition, with CRISPR-Cas compounds, multiple genetic modifications can be introduced seamlessly in a single step. CRISPR-Cas not only brings genome engineering capacities to species such as rodents and livestock in which the existing toolbox was already large, but has also enabled precise genetic engineering of organisms with difficult-to-edit genomes such as zebrafish, and of technically challenging species such as non-human primates. The CRISPR-Cas system allows generation of targeted mutations in mice, even in laboratories with limited or no access to the complex, time-consuming standard technology using mouse embryonic stem cells. Here we summarize the distinct applications of CRISPR-Cas technology for obtaining a variety of genetic modifications in different model organisms, underlining their advantages and limitations relative to other genome editing nucleases. We will guide the reader through the many publications that have seen the light in the first year of CRISPR-Cas technology. PMID:25092533

  14. Engineering visualization utilizing advanced animation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sabionski, Gunter R.; Robinson, Thomas L., Jr.

    1989-01-01

    Engineering visualization is the use of computer graphics to depict engineering analysis and simulation in visual form from project planning through documentation. Graphics displays let engineers see data represented dynamically which permits the quick evaluation of results. The current state of graphics hardware and software generally allows the creation of two types of 3D graphics. The use of animated video as an engineering visualization tool is presented. The engineering, animation, and videography aspects of animated video production are each discussed. Specific issues include the integration of staffing expertise, hardware, software, and the various production processes. A detailed explanation of the animation process reveals the capabilities of this unique engineering visualization method. Automation of animation and video production processes are covered and future directions are proposed.

  15. Genetically Engineered Cyanobacteria

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zhou, Ruanbao (Inventor); Gibbons, William (Inventor)

    2015-01-01

    The disclosed embodiments provide cyanobacteria spp. that have been genetically engineered to have increased production of carbon-based products of interest. These genetically engineered hosts efficiently convert carbon dioxide and light into carbon-based products of interest such as long chained hydrocarbons. Several constructs containing polynucleotides encoding enzymes active in the metabolic pathways of cyanobacteria are disclosed. In many instances, the cyanobacteria strains have been further genetically modified to optimize production of the carbon-based products of interest. The optimization includes both up-regulation and down-regulation of particular genes.

  16. [Applications of genetically modified animals].

    PubMed

    Houdebine, Louis-Marie

    2009-01-01

    The first transgenic animals, mice, were obtained in 1980. The techniques of gene transfer had to be adapted to obtain transgenic animals with an acceptable yield in about fifteen species. When the yield is low (low rate of random integration and targeted integration via homologous recombination), genetic modifications must be achieved in intermediate cells able to participate to the development of chimeric transgenic animals (ES cells, EG cells, iPS obtained by the dedifferentiation of somatic cells) or in somatic cells used as nuclear donor to generate transgenic clones. Various tools make possible a marked increase of homologous recombination efficiency (meganucleases and ZFN), or a gene inactivation at the genome level (direct or conditional knock out) or at the mRNA level (interfering RNAs). Vectors allow a more reliable transgene expression. Genetically modified animals are used mainly to obtain information on biological functions and human diseases. Transgenic animals produce recombinant pharmaceutical proteins in milk and soon in egg white. Pig organs adapted to be tolerated by patients might be tested in humans in five years. The projects based on the use of transgenesis to improve animal production are presently few. Transgenic salmon with accelerated growth might be on the market when their possible escape in oceans will be controlled. PMID:20122391

  17. (Genetically engineered microorganisms)

    SciTech Connect

    Sharples, F.E.

    1988-04-18

    The traveler attended the First International Conference on the Release of Genetically Engineered Microorganisms at the request of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). The purpose of the conference was to provide an international forum for the discussion of the issues and concerns related to the release of genetically engineered microorganisms for environmental and agricultural applications. The cost of attendance was paid by UNEP, a group with whom a small Work-for-Others contract (to participate in developing international biosafety guidelines) is under discussion.

  18. Paper Genetic Engineering.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    MacClintic, Scott D.; Nelson, Genevieve M.

    Bacterial transformation is a commonly used technique in genetic engineering that involves transferring a gene of interest into a bacterial host so that the bacteria can be used to produce large quantities of the gene product. Although several kits are available for performing bacterial transformation in the classroom, students do not always…

  19. Safe genetically engineered plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rosellini, D.; Veronesi, F.

    2007-10-01

    The application of genetic engineering to plants has provided genetically modified plants (GMPs, or transgenic plants) that are cultivated worldwide on increasing areas. The most widespread GMPs are herbicide-resistant soybean and canola and insect-resistant corn and cotton. New GMPs that produce vaccines, pharmaceutical or industrial proteins, and fortified food are approaching the market. The techniques employed to introduce foreign genes into plants allow a quite good degree of predictability of the results, and their genome is minimally modified. However, some aspects of GMPs have raised concern: (a) control of the insertion site of the introduced DNA sequences into the plant genome and of its mutagenic effect; (b) presence of selectable marker genes conferring resistance to an antibiotic or an herbicide, linked to the useful gene; (c) insertion of undesired bacterial plasmid sequences; and (d) gene flow from transgenic plants to non-transgenic crops or wild plants. In response to public concerns, genetic engineering techniques are continuously being improved. Techniques to direct foreign gene integration into chosen genomic sites, to avoid the use of selectable genes or to remove them from the cultivated plants, to reduce the transfer of undesired bacterial sequences, and make use of alternative, safer selectable genes, are all fields of active research. In our laboratory, some of these new techniques are applied to alfalfa, an important forage plant. These emerging methods for plant genetic engineering are briefly reviewed in this work.

  20. Selected Readings in Genetic Engineering

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mertens, Thomas R.; Robinson, Sandra K.

    1973-01-01

    Describes different sources of readings for understanding issues and concepts of genetic engineering. Broad categories of reading materials are: concerns about genetic engineering; its background; procedures; and social, ethical and legal issues. References are listed. (PS)

  1. Engineering animal models of dystonia

    PubMed Central

    Oleas, Janneth; Yokoi, Fumiaki; DeAndrade, Mark P.; Pisani, Antonio; Li, Yuqing

    2013-01-01

    Dystonia is a neurological disorder characterized by abnormal involuntary movements that are prolonged and often cause twisting and turning. Several genetically modified worms, fruit flies, and rodents have been generated as models of genetic dystonias, and in particular DYT1, DYT11, and DYT12 dystonias. Although these models do not show overt dystonic symptoms, the rodent models exhibit pronounced motor deficits in specialized behavioral tasks, such as the rotarod and beam-walking tests. For example, in a rodent model of DYT12 dystonia, which is generally stress triggered, motor deficits are observed only after the animal is stressed. Moreover, in a rodent model of DYT1 dystonia, the motor and electrophysiological deficits can be rescued by trihexyphenidyl, a common anticholinergic medication used to treat dystonic symptoms in human patients. Biochemically, the DYT1 and DYT11 animal models also share some similarities to patients, such as a reduction in striatal D2 dopamine receptor and binding activities. Additionally, conditional knockout mouse models for DYT1 and DYT11 dystonia show that the loss of the causal dystonia related proteins in the striatum lead to motor deficits. Interestingly, loss of the DYT1 dystonia causal protein in Purkinje cells shows an improvement in motor performance, suggesting that gene therapy targeting of the cerebellum or intervention in its downstream pathways may be useful. Finally, recent studies using DYT1 dystonia worm and mouse models led to a potential novel therapeutic agent, which is currently undergoing clinical trials. These results indicate that genetic animal models are an extremely powerful tool to elucidate the pathophysiology and to further develop new therapeutics for dystonia. PMID:23893455

  2. Engineering animal models of dystonia.

    PubMed

    Oleas, Janneth; Yokoi, Fumiaki; DeAndrade, Mark P; Pisani, Antonio; Li, Yuqing

    2013-06-15

    Dystonia is a neurological disorder characterized by abnormal involuntary movements that are prolonged and often cause twisting and turning. Several genetically modified worms, fruit flies, and rodents have been generated as models of genetic dystonias, in particular DYT1, DYT11, and DYT12 dystonias. Although these models do not show overt dystonic symptoms, the rodent models exhibit motor deficits in specialized behavioral tasks, such as the rotarod and beam-walking tests. For example, in a rodent model of DYT12 dystonia, which is generally stress triggered, motor deficits are observed only after the animal is stressed. Moreover, in a rodent model of DYT1 dystonia, the motor and electrophysiological deficits can be rescued by trihexyphenidyl, a common anticholinergic medication used to treat dystonic symptoms in human patients. Biochemically, the DYT1 and DYT11 animal models also share some similarities to patients, such as a reduction in striatal D2 dopamine receptor and binding activities. In addition, conditional knockout mouse models for DYT1 and DYT11 dystonia demonstrate that loss of the causal dystonia-related proteins in the striatum leads to motor deficits. Interestingly, loss of the DYT1 dystonia causal protein in Purkinje cells shows an improvement in motor performance, suggesting that gene therapy targeting of the cerebellum or intervention in its downstream pathways may be useful. Finally, recent studies using DYT1 dystonia worm and mouse models led to a potential novel therapeutic agent, which is currently undergoing clinical trials. These results indicate that genetic animal models are powerful tools to elucidate the pathophysiology and to further develop new therapeutics for dystonia. PMID:23893455

  3. Genetically Engineered Pig Models for Human Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Prather, Randall S.; Lorson, Monique; Ross, Jason W.; Whyte, Jeffrey J.; Walters, Eric

    2015-01-01

    Although pigs are used widely as models of human disease, their utility as models has been enhanced by genetic engineering. Initially, transgenes were added randomly to the genome, but with the application of homologous recombination, zinc finger nucleases, and transcription activator-like effector nuclease (TALEN) technologies, now most any genetic change that can be envisioned can be completed. To date these genetic modifications have resulted in animals that have the potential to provide new insights into human diseases for which a good animal model did not exist previously. These new animal models should provide the preclinical data for treatments that are developed for diseases such as Alzheimer's disease, cystic fibrosis, retinitis pigmentosa, spinal muscular atrophy, diabetes, and organ failure. These new models will help to uncover aspects and treatments of these diseases that were otherwise unattainable. The focus of this review is to describe genetically engineered pigs that have resulted in models of human diseases. PMID:25387017

  4. Expanding the genetic code of an animal.

    PubMed

    Greiss, Sebastian; Chin, Jason W

    2011-09-14

    Genetic code expansion, for the site-specific incorporation of unnatural amino acids into proteins, is currently limited to cultured cells and unicellular organisms. Here we expand the genetic code of a multicellular animal, the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. PMID:21819153

  5. Agrobacterium: nature's genetic engineer.

    PubMed

    Nester, Eugene W

    2014-01-01

    Agrobacterium was identified as the agent causing the plant tumor, crown gall over 100 years ago. Since then, studies have resulted in many surprising observations. Armin Braun demonstrated that Agrobacterium infected cells had unusual nutritional properties, and that the bacterium was necessary to start the infection but not for continued tumor development. He developed the concept of a tumor inducing principle (TIP), the factor that actually caused the disease. Thirty years later the TIP was shown to be a piece of a tumor inducing (Ti) plasmid excised by an endonuclease. In the next 20 years, most of the key features of the disease were described. The single-strand DNA (T-DNA) with the endonuclease attached is transferred through a type IV secretion system into the host cell where it is likely coated and protected from nucleases by a bacterial secreted protein to form the T-complex. A nuclear localization signal in the endonuclease guides the transferred strand (T-strand), into the nucleus where it is integrated randomly into the host chromosome. Other secreted proteins likely aid in uncoating the T-complex. The T-DNA encodes enzymes of auxin, cytokinin, and opine synthesis, the latter a food source for Agrobacterium. The genes associated with T-strand formation and transfer (vir) map to the Ti plasmid and are only expressed when the bacteria are in close association with a plant. Plant signals are recognized by a two-component regulatory system which activates vir genes. Chromosomal genes with pleiotropic functions also play important roles in plant transformation. The data now explain Braun's old observations and also explain why Agrobacterium is nature's genetic engineer. Any DNA inserted between the border sequences which define the T-DNA will be transferred and integrated into host cells. Thus, Agrobacterium has become the major vector in plant genetic engineering. PMID:25610442

  6. Moral Fantasy in Genetic Engineering.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Boone, C. Keith

    1984-01-01

    Discusses the main ethical issues generated by the new genetics and suggests ways to think about them. Concerns include "playing God," violation of the natural order of the universe, and abuse of genetic technology. Critical distinctions for making difficult decisions about genetic engineering issues are noted. (DH)

  7. Congenital and Genetic Disease in Domestic Animals

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mulvihill, John J.

    1972-01-01

    Reviews observations on domestic animals that have led to the identification of environmental teratogens, and have provided insight into the pathogenesis of congenital defects and genetic diseases in man." (Author/AL)

  8. Genetics of Infectious Disease Resistance in Animals

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This presentation will summarize genomic resources available for studies of genetic control of infectious disease resistance in animals. It will then review data collected in our and collaborators labs of genetic control of swine resistance to viral infections, e.g., Porcine reproductive and respir...

  9. Genetic Engineering Workshop Report, 2010

    SciTech Connect

    Allen, J; Slezak, T

    2010-11-03

    The Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) Bioinformatics group has recently taken on a role in DTRA's Transformation Medical Technologies (TMT) program. The high-level goal of TMT is to accelerate the development of broad-spectrum countermeasures. To achieve this goal, there is a need to assess the genetic engineering (GE) approaches, potential application as well as detection and mitigation strategies. LLNL was tasked to coordinate a workshop to determine the scope of investments that DTRA should make to stay current with the rapid advances in genetic engineering technologies, so that accidental or malicious uses of GE technologies could be adequately detected and characterized. Attachment A is an earlier report produced by LLNL for TMT that provides some relevant background on Genetic Engineering detection. A workshop was held on September 23-24, 2010 in Springfield, Virginia. It was attended by a total of 55 people (see Attachment B). Twenty four (44%) of the attendees were academic researchers involved in GE or bioinformatics technology, 6 (11%) were from DTRA or the TMT program management, 7 (13%) were current TMT performers (including Jonathan Allen and Tom Slezak of LLNL who hosted the workshop), 11 (20%) were from other Federal agencies, and 7 (13%) were from industries that are involved in genetic engineering. Several attendees could be placed in multiple categories. There were 26 attendees (47%) who were from out of the DC area and received travel assistance through Invitational Travel Orders (ITOs). We note that this workshop could not have been as successful without the ability to invite experts from outside of the Beltway region. This workshop was an unclassified discussion of the science behind current genetic engineering capabilities. US citizenship was not required for attendance. While this may have limited some discussions concerning risk, we felt that it was more important for this first workshop to focus on the scientific state of the art. We also consciously chose to not dwell on matters of policy (for example, screening of commercial gene or oligo synthesis orders), as multiple other forums for policy discussion have taken place in recent years. We acknowledge that other workshops on topics relevant to genetic engineering should be held, some of which may need to take place at higher classification levels. The workshop moderators would like to acknowledge the enthusiastic participation of the attendees in the discussions. Special thanks are given to Sofi Ibrahim, for his extensive assistance on helping this report reach its final form. The genetic engineering workshop brought together a diverse mix of genetic engineering pioneers and experts, Federal agency representatives concerned with abuses of genetic engineering, TMT performers, bioinformatics experts, and representatives from industry involved with large-scale genetic engineering and synthetic biology. Several talks established the current range of genetic engineering capabilities and the relative difficulties of identifying and characterizing the results of their use. Extensive discussions established a number of recommendations to DTRA of how to direct future research investments so that any mis-use of genetic engineering techniques can be promptly identified and characterized.

  10. "Genetically Engineered" Nanoelectronics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Klimeck, Gerhard; Salazar-Lazaro, Carlos H.; Stoica, Adrian; Cwik, Thomas

    2000-01-01

    The quantum mechanical functionality of nanoelectronic devices such as resonant tunneling diodes (RTDs), quantum well infrared-photodetectors (QWIPs), quantum well lasers, and heterostructure field effect transistors (HFETs) is enabled by material variations on an atomic scale. The design and optimization of such devices requires a fundamental understanding of electron transport in such dimensions. The Nanoelectronic Modeling Tool (NEMO) is a general-purpose quantum device design and analysis tool based on a fundamental non-equilibrium electron transport theory. NEW was combined with a parallelized genetic algorithm package (PGAPACK) to evolve structural and material parameters to match a desired set of experimental data. A numerical experiment that evolves structural variations such as layer widths and doping concentrations is performed to analyze an experimental current voltage characteristic. The genetic algorithm is found to drive the NEMO simulation parameters close to the experimentally prescribed layer thicknesses and doping profiles. With such a quantitative agreement between theory and experiment design synthesis can be performed.

  11. Genetic Engineering and Crop Production.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jones, Helen C.; Frost, S.

    1991-01-01

    With a spotlight upon current agricultural difficulties and environmental dilemmas, this paper considers both the extant and potential applications of genetic engineering with respect to crop production. The nonagricultural factors most likely to sway the impact of this emergent technology upon future crop production are illustrated. (JJK)

  12. Applications of genetic engineering in veterinary medicine.

    PubMed

    Ciftci, K; Trovitch, P

    2000-09-15

    A mutation of just one gene will cause abnormal cell behavior leading to the synthesis of a dysfunctional protein. This mutation will inevitably result in the cell functioning only marginally or not at all. Other genetic mutations interfere with the cell's normal life cycle, especially the cell-division cycle. The goal behind recombinant DNA technology is to deliver the correct version of a mutated gene to the cell so that the expression will lead to the normal production of protein and the restoration of normal cell function. This can be considered qualitatively different from other conventional treatments due to genetic material being a putative therapeutic agent. By altering the genetic material of cells, gene therapy may correct, or one day cure, the specific disease pathophysiology. Genetic engineering has been used in veterinary medicine to diagnose, prevent and treat diseases, breed different species and produce transgenic animals for therapeutic proteins or xenografting. In this review the current status of recombinant DNA technology and its application in veterinary medicine together with the obstacles to, and applications of, genetic engineering in veterinary medicine are discussed. PMID:10967221

  13. The Genetic Architecture of Domestication in Animals

    PubMed Central

    Wright, Dominic

    2015-01-01

    Domestication has been essential to the progress of human civilization, and the process itself has fascinated biologists for hundreds of years. Domestication has led to a series of remarkable changes in a variety of plants and animals, in what is termed the “domestication phenotype.” In domesticated animals, this general phenotype typically consists of similar changes in tameness, behavior, size/morphology, color, brain composition, and adrenal gland size. This domestication phenotype is seen in a range of different animals. However, the genetic basis of these associated changes is still puzzling. The genes for these different traits tend to be grouped together in clusters in the genome, though it is still not clear whether these clusters represent pleiotropic effects, or are in fact linked clusters. This review focuses on what is currently known about the genetic architecture of domesticated animal species, if genes of large effect (often referred to as major genes) are prevalent in driving the domestication phenotype, and whether pleiotropy can explain the loci underpinning these diverse traits being colocated. PMID:26512200

  14. Genetically Engineered Humanized Mouse Models for Preclinical Antibody Studies

    PubMed Central

    Proetzel, Gabriele; Wiles, Michael V.; Roopenian, Derry C.

    2015-01-01

    The use of genetic engineering has vastly improved our capabilities to create animal models relevant in preclinical research. With the recent advances in gene-editing technologies, it is now possible to very rapidly create highly tunable mouse models as needs arise. Here, we provide an overview of genetic engineering methods, as well as the development of humanized neonatal Fc receptor (FcRn) models and their use for monoclonal antibody in vivo studies. PMID:24150980

  15. Genetic animal models of malformations of cortical development and epilepsy.

    PubMed

    Wong, Michael; Roper, Steven N

    2016-02-15

    Malformations of cortical development constitute a variety of pathological brain abnormalities that commonly cause severe, medically-refractory epilepsy, including focal lesions, such as focal cortical dysplasia, heterotopias, and tubers of tuberous sclerosis complex, and diffuse malformations, such as lissencephaly. Although some cortical malformations result from environmental insults during cortical development in utero, genetic factors are increasingly recognized as primary pathogenic factors across the entire spectrum of malformations. Genes implicated in causing different cortical malformations are involved in a variety of physiological functions, but many are focused on regulation of cell proliferation, differentiation, and neuronal migration. Advances in molecular genetic methods have allowed the engineering of increasingly sophisticated animal models of cortical malformations and associated epilepsy. These animal models have identified some common mechanistic themes shared by a number of different cortical malformations, but also revealed the diversity and complexity of cellular and molecular mechanisms that lead to the development of the pathological lesions and resulting epileptogenesis. PMID:25911067

  16. Genetically engineered livestock: ethical use for food and medical models.

    PubMed

    Garas, Lydia C; Murray, James D; Maga, Elizabeth A

    2015-01-01

    Recent advances in the production of genetically engineered (GE) livestock have resulted in a variety of new transgenic animals with desirable production and composition changes. GE animals have been generated to improve growth efficiency, food composition, and disease resistance in domesticated livestock species. GE animals are also used to produce pharmaceuticals and as medical models for human diseases. The potential use of these food animals for human consumption has prompted an intense debate about food safety and animal welfare concerns with the GE approach. Additionally, public perception and ethical concerns about their use have caused delays in establishing a clear and efficient regulatory approval process. Ethically, there are far-reaching implications of not using genetically engineered livestock, at a detriment to both producers and consumers, as use of this technology can improve both human and animal health and welfare. PMID:25387117

  17. Genetically engineered plants: environmental issues

    SciTech Connect

    Hauptli, H.; Newell, N.; Goodman, R.M.

    1985-05-01

    Recombinant DNA technology and the universality of the genetic code make it possible to transfer genes from other organisms including those in other phyla, into plants. Cultivating genetically engineered crop plants might pose two environmental risks: negative environmental effects of a modified genotype itself and the possible movement of that unique DNA to other organisms. In order to properly assess which experiments should be done and under what conditions an overseeing group is needed, a United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) overseeing group could gather reviewers familiar with the issues of DNA technology and could assert jurisdiction over the independently run state agricultural organisations. A group of reputable scientists in the appropriate fields could analyse the scientific issues.

  18. Genetically Engineered Microelectronic Infrared Filters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cwik, Tom; Klimeck, Gerhard

    1998-01-01

    A genetic algorithm is used for design of infrared filters and in the understanding of the material structure of a resonant tunneling diode. These two components are examples of microdevices and nanodevices that can be numerically simulated using fundamental mathematical and physical models. Because the number of parameters that can be used in the design of one of these devices is large, and because experimental exploration of the design space is unfeasible, reliable software models integrated with global optimization methods are examined The genetic algorithm and engineering design codes have been implemented on massively parallel computers to exploit their high performance. Design results are presented for the infrared filter showing new and optimized device design. Results for nanodevices are presented in a companion paper at this workshop.

  19. Overcoming Challenges in Engineering the Genetic Code.

    PubMed

    Lajoie, M J; Söll, D; Church, G M

    2016-02-27

    Withstanding 3.5billionyears of genetic drift, the canonical genetic code remains such a fundamental foundation for the complexity of life that it is highly conserved across all three phylogenetic domains. Genome engineering technologies are now making it possible to rationally change the genetic code, offering resistance to viruses, genetic isolation from horizontal gene transfer, and prevention of environmental escape by genetically modified organisms. We discuss the biochemical, genetic, and technological challenges that must be overcome in order to engineer the genetic code. PMID:26348789

  20. The Genetics of Deafness in Domestic Animals.

    PubMed

    Strain, George M

    2015-01-01

    Although deafness can be acquired throughout an animal's life from a variety of causes, hereditary deafness, especially congenital hereditary deafness, is a significant problem in several species. Extensive reviews exist of the genetics of deafness in humans and mice, but not for deafness in domestic animals. Hereditary deafness in many species and breeds is associated with loci for white pigmentation, where the cochlear pathology is cochleo-saccular. In other cases, there is no pigmentation association and the cochlear pathology is neuroepithelial. Late onset hereditary deafness has recently been identified in dogs and may be present but not yet recognized in other species. Few genes responsible for deafness have been identified in animals, but progress has been made for identifying genes responsible for the associated pigmentation phenotypes. Across species, the genes identified with deafness or white pigmentation patterns include MITF, PMEL, KIT, EDNRB, CDH23, TYR, and TRPM1 in dog, cat, horse, cow, pig, sheep, ferret, mink, camelid, and rabbit. Multiple causative genes are present in some species. Significant work remains in many cases to identify specific chromosomal deafness genes so that DNA testing can be used to identify carriers of the mutated genes and thereby reduce deafness prevalence. PMID:26664958

  1. Genetically Engineered Immunotherapy for Advanced Cancer

    Cancer.gov

    In this trial, doctors will collect T lymphocytes from patients with advanced mesothelin-expressing cancer and genetically engineer them to recognize mesothelin. The gene-engineered cells will be multiplied and infused into the patient to fight the cancer

  2. The Genetics of Deafness in Domestic Animals

    PubMed Central

    Strain, George M.

    2015-01-01

    Although deafness can be acquired throughout an animal’s life from a variety of causes, hereditary deafness, especially congenital hereditary deafness, is a significant problem in several species. Extensive reviews exist of the genetics of deafness in humans and mice, but not for deafness in domestic animals. Hereditary deafness in many species and breeds is associated with loci for white pigmentation, where the cochlear pathology is cochleo-saccular. In other cases, there is no pigmentation association and the cochlear pathology is neuroepithelial. Late onset hereditary deafness has recently been identified in dogs and may be present but not yet recognized in other species. Few genes responsible for deafness have been identified in animals, but progress has been made for identifying genes responsible for the associated pigmentation phenotypes. Across species, the genes identified with deafness or white pigmentation patterns include MITF, PMEL, KIT, EDNRB, CDH23, TYR, and TRPM1 in dog, cat, horse, cow, pig, sheep, ferret, mink, camelid, and rabbit. Multiple causative genes are present in some species. Significant work remains in many cases to identify specific chromosomal deafness genes so that DNA testing can be used to identify carriers of the mutated genes and thereby reduce deafness prevalence. PMID:26664958

  3. Enhanced Genetic Tools for Engineering Multigene Traits into Green Algae

    PubMed Central

    Rasala, Beth A.; Chao, Syh-Shiuan; Pier, Matthew; Barrera, Daniel J.; Mayfield, Stephen P.

    2014-01-01

    Transgenic microalgae have the potential to impact many diverse biotechnological industries including energy, human and animal nutrition, pharmaceuticals, health and beauty, and specialty chemicals. However, major obstacles to sophisticated genetic and metabolic engineering in algae have been the lack of well-characterized transformation vectors to direct engineered gene products to specific subcellular locations, and the inability to robustly express multiple nuclear-encoded transgenes within a single cell. Here we validate a set of genetic tools that enable protein targeting to distinct subcellular locations, and present two complementary methods for multigene engineering in the eukaryotic green microalga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. The tools described here will enable advanced metabolic and genetic engineering to promote microalgae biotechnology and product commercialization. PMID:24710110

  4. Enhanced genetic tools for engineering multigene traits into green algae.

    PubMed

    Rasala, Beth A; Chao, Syh-Shiuan; Pier, Matthew; Barrera, Daniel J; Mayfield, Stephen P

    2014-01-01

    Transgenic microalgae have the potential to impact many diverse biotechnological industries including energy, human and animal nutrition, pharmaceuticals, health and beauty, and specialty chemicals. However, major obstacles to sophisticated genetic and metabolic engineering in algae have been the lack of well-characterized transformation vectors to direct engineered gene products to specific subcellular locations, and the inability to robustly express multiple nuclear-encoded transgenes within a single cell. Here we validate a set of genetic tools that enable protein targeting to distinct subcellular locations, and present two complementary methods for multigene engineering in the eukaryotic green microalga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. The tools described here will enable advanced metabolic and genetic engineering to promote microalgae biotechnology and product commercialization. PMID:24710110

  5. Positive Bioluminescence Imaging of MicroRNA Expression in Small Animal Models Using an Engineered Genetic-Switch Expression System, RILES.

    PubMed

    Baril, Patrick; Pichon, Chantal

    2016-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of small, noncoding RNAs which regulate gene expression by directing their target mRNA for degradation or translational repression. Since their discovery in the early 1990s, miRNAs have emerged as key components in the posttranscriptional regulation of gene networks, shaping many biological processes from development, morphogenesis, differentiation, proliferation and apoptosis. Although understanding of the molecular basis of miRNA biology is improving, methods to monitor the dynamic and the spatiotemporal aspects of miRNA expression under physiopathological conditions are required. However, monitoring of miRNAs is difficult due to their small size, low abundance, high degree of sequence similarity, and their dynamic expression pattern which is subjected to tight transcriptional and post-transcriptional controls. Recently, we developed a miRNA monitoring system called RILES, standing for RNAi-inducible expression system, which relies on an engineered regulatable expression system, to switch on the expression of the luciferase gene when the targeted miRNA is expressed in cells. We demonstrated that RILES is a specific, sensitive, and robust method to determine the fine-tuning of miRNA expression during the development of an experimental pathological process in mice. Because RILES offers the possibility for longitudinal studies on individual subjects, sharper insights into miRNA regulation can be generated, with applications in physiology, pathophysiology and development of RNAi-based therapies. This chapter describes methods and protocols to monitor the expression of myomiR-206, -1, and -133 in the tibialis anterior muscle of mice. These protocols can be used and adapted to monitor the expression of other miRNAs in other biological processes. PMID:26530925

  6. Genetic Engineering: The Modification of Man

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sinsheimer, Robert L.

    1970-01-01

    Describes somatic and genetic manipulations of individual genotypes, using diabetes control as an example of the first mode that is potentially realizable be derepression or viral transduction of genes. Advocates the use of genetic engineering of the second mode to remove man from his biological limitations, but offers maxims to ensure the…

  7. Genetic Engineering: The Modification of Man

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sinsheimer, Robert L.

    1970-01-01

    Describes somatic and genetic manipulations of individual genotypes, using diabetes control as an example of the first mode that is potentially realizable be derepression or viral transduction of genes. Advocates the use of genetic engineering of the second mode to remove man from his biological limitations, but offers maxims to ensure the

  8. 76 FR 63279 - Monsanto Co.; Determination of Nonregulated Status for Soybean Genetically Engineered for Insect...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-10-12

    ... notice\\1\\ published in the Federal Register on June 28, 2011 (76 FR 37770-37771, Docket No. APHIS-2011... Genetically Engineered for Insect Resistance AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA. ACTION... Monsanto Co., designated as event MON 87701, which has been genetically engineered for insect...

  9. Genetic engineering and autonomous agency.

    PubMed

    Barclay, Linda

    2003-01-01

    In this paper I argue that the genetic manipulation of sexual orientation at the embryo stage could have a detrimental effect on the subsequent person's later capacity for autonomous agency. By focussing on an example of sexist oppression I show that the norms and expectations expressed with this type of genetic manipulation can threaten the development of autonomous agency and the kind of social environment that makes its exercise likely. PMID:14989287

  10. Potency of Animal Models in KANSEI Engineering

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ozaki, Shigeru; Hisano, Setsuji; Iwamoto, Yoshiki

    Various species of animals have been used as animal models for neuroscience and provided critical information about the brain functions. Although it seems difficult to elucidate a highly advanced function of the human brain, animal models have potency to clarify the fundamental mechanisms of emotion, decision-making and social behavior. In this review, we will pick up common animal models and point to both the merits and demerits caused by the characteristics. We will also mention that wide-ranging approaches from animal models are advantageous to understand KANSEI as well as mind in humans.

  11. Genetic engineering and the use of bovine somatotropin

    SciTech Connect

    Grossman, C.J. Xavier Univ., Cincinnati, OH )

    1990-08-22

    During the last decade there has been an unfortunate reappearance in our society of an antitechnology and antiscience attitude. This is exemplified by those advocates who would ban all animals in research and block fetal tissue studies and by those who support creationism. An especially vocal group consists of those people who are against any form of genetic engineering regardless of the benefits or potential benefits that might be realized.

  12. Pertussis toxins, other antigens become likely targets for genetic engineering

    SciTech Connect

    Marwick, C.

    1990-11-14

    Genetically engineered pertussis vaccines have yet to be fully tested clinically. But early human, animal, and in vitro studies indicate effectiveness in reducing toxic effects due to Bordetella pertussis. The licensed pertussis vaccines consists of inactivated whole cells of the organism. Although highly effective, they have been associated with neurologic complications. While the evidence continues to mount that these complications are extremely rare, if they occur at all, it has affected the public's acceptance of pertussis immunization.

  13. Reproductive biotechnologies and management of animal genetic resources

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Global awareness has increased efforts to conserve animal genetic resources (AnGR). Ex-situ conservation and management of AnGR is exclusively dependent upon an array of reproductive and genetic biotechnologies. These technologies range from well established protocols, e.g., cryopreservation of sper...

  14. Genetic Engineering: and the Law

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Australian Journal of Mental Retardation, 1977

    1977-01-01

    In a transcript from a radio show, Nobel Prize Winner Sir Macfarlane Burnet stresses the critical need for scientists to regulate their own activities in genetic research and cites the potential danger of creating a new form of polio which might escape. (CL)

  15. Engineering Values Into Genetic Engineering: A Proposed Analytic Framework for Scientific Social Responsibility.

    PubMed

    Sankar, Pamela L; Cho, Mildred K

    2015-12-01

    Recent experiments have been used to "edit" genomes of various plant, animal and other species, including humans, with unprecedented precision. Furthermore, editing the Cas9 endonuclease gene with a gene encoding the desired guide RNA into an organism, adjacent to an altered gene, could create a "gene drive" that could spread a trait through an entire population of organisms. These experiments represent advances along a spectrum of technological abilities that genetic engineers have been working on since the advent of recombinant DNA techniques. The scientific and bioethics communities have built substantial literatures about the ethical and policy implications of genetic engineering, especially in the age of bioterrorism. However, recent CRISPr/Cas experiments have triggered a rehashing of previous policy discussions, suggesting that the scientific community requires guidance on how to think about social responsibility. We propose a framework to enable analysis of social responsibility, using two examples of genetic engineering experiments. PMID:26632356

  16. Engineering large animal models of human disease.

    PubMed

    Whitelaw, C Bruce A; Sheets, Timothy P; Lillico, Simon G; Telugu, Bhanu P

    2016-01-01

    The recent development of gene editing tools and methodology for use in livestock enables the production of new animal disease models. These tools facilitate site-specific mutation of the genome, allowing animals carrying known human disease mutations to be produced. In this review, we describe the various gene editing tools and how they can be used for a range of large animal models of diseases. This genomic technology is in its infancy but the expectation is that through the use of gene editing tools we will see a dramatic increase in animal model resources available for both the study of human disease and the translation of this knowledge into the clinic. Comparative pathology will be central to the productive use of these animal models and the successful translation of new therapeutic strategies. 2015 The Authors. The Journal of Pathology published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of Pathological Society of Great Britain and Ireland. PMID:26414877

  17. Genetic engineering in contemporary Islamic thought.

    PubMed

    Rispler-Chaim, V

    1998-01-01

    Muslims share with others both the interest in and the concern about genetic engineering. Naturally their reactions and views stem from general Islamic dogma and from Islamic medical ethics, but they are not unaware of Western scientific data. Particularly relevant is the Islamic religious prohibition against "changing what Allah has created." Muslim muftis try to offer practical solutions for individuals. Islamic law is concerned about maintaining pure lineage. Consanguineous matings are very common, but induced abortions are usually ruled out. Cloning has reawakened among Muslims an old debate over the positive as well as hazardous aspects of genetic engineering. PMID:15168678

  18. Engineering Genetically Encoded FRET Sensors

    PubMed Central

    Lindenburg, Laurens; Merkx, Maarten

    2014-01-01

    Frster Resonance Energy Transfer (FRET) between two fluorescent proteins can be exploited to create fully genetically encoded and thus subcellularly targetable sensors. FRET sensors report changes in energy transfer between a donor and an acceptor fluorescent protein that occur when an attached sensor domain undergoes a change in conformation in response to ligand binding. The design of sensitive FRET sensors remains challenging as there are few generally applicable design rules and each sensor must be optimized anew. In this review we discuss various strategies that address this shortcoming, including rational design approaches that exploit self-associating fluorescent domains and the directed evolution of FRET sensors using high-throughput screening. PMID:24991940

  19. Behavior genetics and the domestication of animals.

    PubMed

    Jensen, Per

    2014-02-01

    Across species, a similar suite of traits tends to develop in response to domestication, including modifications in behavior. Reduced fear and increased stress tolerance were central in early domestication, and many domestication-related behaviors may have developed as traits correlated to reduced fear. Genetic mechanisms involved in domestication of behavior can be investigated by using top-down or bottom-up approaches, either starting from the behavior variation and searching for underlying genes or finding selected loci and then attempting to identify the associated phenotypes. Combinations of these approaches have proven powerful, and examples of results from such studies are presented and discussed. This includes loci associated with tameness in foxes and dogs, as well as loci correlated with reduced aggression and increased sociality in chickens. Finally, some examples are provided on epigenetic mechanisms in behavior, and it is suggested that selection of favorable epigenetic variants may have been an important mechanism in domestication. PMID:25384136

  20. "This food may contain ..." What nurses should know about genetically engineered foods.

    PubMed

    Whitney, Stuart L; Maltby, Hendrika J; Carr, Jeanine M

    2004-01-01

    Genetic engineering has been in existence since 1973. The process involves placing genetic DNA from one organism into another. Genetically engineered organisms (GEOs) are the name given to such new species of plants created through this process. Proponents of GEOs assert that foods we are now able to produce have greater nutritional value, longer shelf life, better appearance, taste and smell. There are positive benefits to genetic engineering of plants and animals. A growing concern for the health safety of genetically engineered plants and foods is developing among the cautious. The purpose of this article is to define genetic engineering, present benefits and risks, describe the impact on human health, and address implications for nursing. PMID:15499316

  1. Review: domestic animal forensic genetics - biological evidence, genetic markers, analytical approaches and challenges.

    PubMed

    Kanthaswamy, S

    2015-10-01

    This review highlights the importance of domestic animal genetic evidence sources, genetic testing, markers and analytical approaches as well as the challenges this field is facing in view of the de facto 'gold standard' human DNA identification. Because of the genetic similarity between humans and domestic animals, genetic analysis of domestic animal hair, saliva, urine, blood and other biological material has generated vital investigative leads that have been admitted into a variety of court proceedings, including criminal and civil litigation. Information on validated short tandem repeat, single nucleotide polymorphism and mitochondrial DNA markers and public access to genetic databases for forensic DNA analysis is becoming readily available. Although the fundamental aspects of animal forensic genetic testing may be reliable and acceptable, animal forensic testing still lacks the standardized testing protocols that human genetic profiling requires, probably because of the absence of monetary support from government agencies and the difficulty in promoting cooperation among competing laboratories. Moreover, there is a lack in consensus about how to best present the results and expert opinion to comply with court standards and bear judicial scrutiny. This has been the single most persistent challenge ever since the earliest use of domestic animal forensic genetic testing in a criminal case in the mid-1990s. Crime laboratory accreditation ensures that genetic test results have the courts' confidence. Because accreditation requires significant commitments of effort, time and resources, the vast majority of animal forensic genetic laboratories are not accredited nor are their analysts certified forensic examiners. The relevance of domestic animal forensic genetics in the criminal justice system is undeniable. However, further improvements are needed in a wide range of supporting resources, including standardized quality assurance and control protocols for sample handling, evidence testing, statistical analysis and reporting that meet the rules of scientific acceptance, reliability and human forensic identification standards. PMID:26364867

  2. Genetics of cardiac disease in the small animal patient.

    PubMed

    Meurs, Kathryn M

    2010-07-01

    There is increasing evidence that many forms of congenital and acquired cardiovascular disease in small animal patients are of familial origin. The large number of familial diseases in domestic purebred animals is thought to be associated with the desire to breed related animals to maintain a specific appearance and the selection of animals from a small group of popular founders (founder effect). Clinicians can use knowledge that a particular trait or disease may be inherited to provide guidance to owners and animal breeders to reduce the frequency of the trait. Even if the molecular cause is not known, identification of a pattern of inheritance and information on clinical screening can be useful for a breeder trying to make breeding decisions. Common forms of inheritance for veterinary diseases include autosomal recessive, autosomal dominant, X-linked recessive, and polygenic. These genetic traits and their possible involvement in cardiac disease in small animals are discussed in this article. PMID:20610020

  3. Recent developments in the genetic engineering of barley

    SciTech Connect

    Mannonen, L.; Kauppinen, V.; Enari, T.M. )

    1994-01-01

    Cereals are the most important group of plants for human nutrition and animal feed. Partially due to the commercial value of crop plants, there has been an ever-increasing interest in using modern biotechnological methods for the improvement of the characteristics of cereals during the past decade. The rapid progress in molecular biology, plant cell culture techniques, and gene transfer technology has resulted in successful transformations of all the major cereals--maize, rice, wheat, and barley. This brings the biotechnological methods closer to the routine also in barley breeding. In this article, the current status of barley genetic engineering, including the patent situation, is reviewed. The needs aims, and possible applications of genetic engineering in barley breeding are discussed. 179 refs.

  4. ASAS centennial paper: Future needs in animal breeding and genetics.

    PubMed

    Green, R D

    2009-02-01

    The past century has seen animal breeding and genetics evolve and expand from definition and validation of basic population genetics theory to development of selection index theory to today's relatively sophisticated genetic prediction systems enabling industry genetic improvement. The end of the first century of the American Society of Animal Science coincides with the rapid movement of the field into the era of genome-enabled genetic improvement and precision management systems. Led by recent research infrastructure investments by the United States and international partners to develop chicken, bovine, swine, ovine, and equine "genomic toolboxes," the animal breeding community is poised to play a crucial role in the century to come. These genomic toolboxes provide the needed platforms for developing whole-genome selection programs based on linkage disequilibrium for a wide spectrum of traits; allow the opportunity to redefine genetic prediction based on allele sharing as opposed to traditional pedigree relationships; and provide for the first time simultaneous information upon which to practice genetic selection and plan precision management of specific genotypes, all early in the life of the animal. An area of major focus will be mining of the genomes through systems biology approaches to better understand gene and metabolic networks--what has previously been lumped into poorly understood genotype by environment and genotype by genotype interactions. Perhaps the greatest obstacle to the successful merger of genomic and quantitative approaches will be the lack of necessary animal resource populations to appropriately define and measure phenotypes (i.e., the so-called phenomic gap) for difficult-to-measure traits such as resistance to disease and stress, adaptability, longevity, and efficiency of nutrient utilization. Additionally, because of de-emphasis of quantitative genetics and animal breeding programs in academia over the past quarter century, a dearth of qualified young scientists to effectively mine the genomes must immediately be addressed. Although the motivating factors may have changed, the need for high-quality animal breeding and genetics research and education has never been greater. PMID:18952735

  5. Commercialization of genetically engineered crops.

    PubMed

    Horsch, R B

    1993-11-29

    More abundant harvests from insect- and disease-resistant crops, vine-ripened tomatoes, or less oily potato chips or french fries are some of the benefits that will result from single gene improvements under development today. These single gene traits will be combined with the best new varieties produced by traditional plant breeding and will accelerate the pace and the scope of our ability to develop even better and more productive crops in the future. The initial group of genetic improvements were first field tested in 1987, improved upon over the past 6 years, and are finally approaching the first commercial sales over the next 3 to 4 years. The key hurdles from discovery of a promising lead to a commercial product trait include: (i) gene cloning and expression; (ii) product development; (iii) field testing; (iv) breeding into multiple elite varieties; (v) product characterization and regulatory review; (vi) public acceptance; and (vii) marketing. The expense and risk to bring transformed crops to market successfully is significantly higher than for traditionally developed new varieties. The high value of some single gene targets and the possibility for patent protection of the processes and final products provide the incentive for private investment in this area. The value to farmers, consumers, the environment and society in general is very high because the problems being solved are those that have resisted previous attempts through conventional means. Public investment in basic plant science research and private investment in product development is a powerful combination for continual improvement in lowering the cost and improving the quality of the world's food supply. PMID:8115451

  6. What Ideas Do Students Associate with "Biotechnology" and "Genetic Engineering"?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hill, Ruaraidh; Stanisstreet, Martin; Boyes, Edward

    2000-01-01

    Explores the ideas that students aged 16-19 associate with the terms 'biotechnology' and 'genetic engineering'. Indicates that some students see biotechnology as risky whereas genetic engineering was described as ethically wrong. (Author/ASK)

  7. Genetic elements of plant viruses as tools for genetic engineering.

    PubMed Central

    Mushegian, A R; Shepherd, R J

    1995-01-01

    Viruses have developed successful strategies for propagation at the expense of their host cells. Efficient gene expression, genome multiplication, and invasion of the host are enabled by virus-encoded genetic elements, many of which are well characterized. Sequences derived from plant DNA and RNA viruses can be used to control expression of other genes in vivo. The main groups of plant virus genetic elements useful in genetic engineering are reviewed, including the signals for DNA-dependent and RNA-dependent RNA synthesis, sequences on the virus mRNAs that enable translational control, and sequences that control processing and intracellular sorting of virus proteins. Use of plant viruses as extrachromosomal expression vectors is also discussed, along with the issue of their stability. PMID:8531885

  8. POLICIES FOR THE MANAGEMENT OF ANIMAL GENETIC RESOURCES

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The antagonism between national livestock sector economic growth and development and the in-situ/in-vivo conservation of animal genetic resources (AnGR) create a need for a policy framework that will promote both economic growth and AnGR conservation for future generations. It is suggested that poli...

  9. Genetics of animal health and disease in cattle

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    There have been considerable recent advancements in animal breeding and genetics relevant to disease control in cattle, which can now be utilised as part of an overall programme for improved cattle health. This review summarises the contribution of genetic makeup to differences in resistance to many diseases affecting cattle. Significant genetic variation in susceptibility to disease does exist among cattle suggesting that genetic selection for improved resistance to disease will be fruitful. Deficiencies in accurately recorded data on individual animal susceptibility to disease are, however, currently hindering the inclusion of health and disease resistance traits in national breeding goals. Developments in 'omics' technologies, such as genomic selection, may help overcome some of the limitations of traditional breeding programmes and will be especially beneficial in breeding for lowly heritable disease traits that only manifest themselves following exposure to pathogens or environmental stressors in adulthood. However, access to large databases of phenotypes on health and disease will still be necessary. This review clearly shows that genetics make a significant contribution to the overall health and resistance to disease in cattle. Therefore, breeding programmes for improved animal health and disease resistance should be seen as an integral part of any overall national disease control strategy. PMID:21777492

  10. Treating cancer with genetically engineered T cells.

    PubMed

    Park, Tristen S; Rosenberg, Steven A; Morgan, Richard A

    2011-11-01

    Administration of ex vivo cultured, naturally occurring tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) has been shown to mediate durable regression of melanoma tumors. However, the generation of TILs is not possible in all patients and there has been limited success in generating TIL in other cancers. Advances in genetic engineering have overcome these limitations by introducing tumor-antigen-targeting receptors into human T lymphocytes. Physicians can now genetically engineer lymphocytes to express highly active T-cell receptors (TCRs) or chimeric antigen receptors (CARs) targeting a variety of tumor antigens expressed in cancer patients. In this review, we discuss the development of TCR and CAR gene transfer technology and the expansion of these therapies into different cancers with the recent demonstration of the clinical efficacy of these treatments. PMID:21663987

  11. Genetic Animal Models of Parkinsons Disease

    PubMed Central

    Dawson, Ted M.; Ko, Han Seok; Dawson, Valina L.

    2010-01-01

    Parkinsons disease (PD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder that is characterized by the degeneration of dopamine (DA) and non-DA neurons, the almost uniform presence of Lewy bodies, and motor deficits. Although the majority of PD is sporadic, specific genetic defects in rare familial cases have provided unique insights into the pathogenesis of PD. Through the creation of animal and cellular models of mutations in LRRK2 and ?-synuclein, which are linked to autosomal dominant PD, and mutations in parkin, DJ-1, and PINK1, which are responsible for autosomal recessive PD, insight into the molecular mechanisms of this disorder are leading to new ideas about the pathogenesis of PD. In this review, we discuss the animal models for these genetic causes of PD, their limitations and value. Moreover, we discuss future directions and potential strategies for optimization of the genetic models. PMID:20547124

  12. 78 FR 13302 - Syngenta Biotechnology, Inc.; Determination of Nonregulated Status of Corn Genetically Engineered...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-02-27

    ... Register on July 13, 2012 (77 FR 41366-41367, Docket No. APHIS-2012-0024), APHIS announced the availability... Status of Corn Genetically Engineered for Insect Resistance AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health Inspection... engineered for resistance to corn rootworm, an insect pest of corn, is no longer considered a...

  13. Genetic engineering of cyanobacteria as biodiesel feedstock.

    SciTech Connect

    Ruffing, Anne M.; Trahan, Christine Alexandra; Jones, Howland D. T.

    2013-01-01

    Algal biofuels are a renewable energy source with the potential to replace conventional petroleum-based fuels, while simultaneously reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The economic feasibility of commercial algal fuel production, however, is limited by low productivity of the natural algal strains. The project described in this SAND report addresses this low algal productivity by genetically engineering cyanobacteria (i.e. blue-green algae) to produce free fatty acids as fuel precursors. The engineered strains were characterized using Sandia's unique imaging capabilities along with cutting-edge RNA-seq technology. These tools are applied to identify additional genetic targets for improving fuel production in cyanobacteria. This proof-of-concept study demonstrates successful fuel production from engineered cyanobacteria, identifies potential limitations, and investigates several strategies to overcome these limitations. This project was funded from FY10-FY13 through the President Harry S. Truman Fellowship in National Security Science and Engineering, a program sponsored by the LDRD office at Sandia National Laboratories.

  14. Natural and Genetically Engineered Proteins for Tissue Engineering

    PubMed Central

    Gomes, Sílvia; Leonor, Isabel B.; Mano, João F.; Reis, Rui L.

    2011-01-01

    To overcome the limitations of traditionally used autografts, allografts and, to a lesser extent, synthetic materials, there is the need to develop a new generation of scaffolds with adequate mechanical and structural support, control of cell attachment, migration, proliferation and differentiation and with bio-resorbable features. This suite of properties would allow the body to heal itself at the same rate as implant degradation. Genetic engineering offers a route to this level of control of biomaterial systems. The possibility of expressing biological components in nature and to modify or bioengineer them further, offers a path towards multifunctional biomaterial systems. This includes opportunities to generate new protein sequences, new self-assembling peptides or fusions of different bioactive domains or protein motifs. New protein sequences with tunable properties can be generated that can be used as new biomaterials. In this review we address some of the most frequently used proteins for tissue engineering and biomedical applications and describe the techniques most commonly used to functionalize protein-based biomaterials by combining them with bioactive molecules to enhance biological performance. We also highlight the use of genetic engineering, for protein heterologous expression and the synthesis of new protein-based biopolymers, focusing the advantages of these functionalized biopolymers when compared with their counterparts extracted directly from nature and modified by techniques such as physical adsorption or chemical modification. PMID:22058578

  15. 78 FR 51706 - Bayer CropScience LP; Determination of Nonregulated Status of Soybean Genetically Engineered for...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-08-21

    ...' regulations in 7 CFR part 340. In a notice \\1\\ published in the Federal Register on July 13, 2012 (77 FR 41358... Nonregulated Status of Soybean Genetically Engineered for Herbicide Resistance AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health... genetically engineered for resistance to the herbicides glyphosate and isoxaflutole, is no longer considered...

  16. Expanding and reprogramming the genetic code of cells and animals.

    PubMed

    Chin, Jason W

    2014-01-01

    Genetic code expansion and reprogramming enable the site-specific incorporation of diverse designer amino acids into proteins produced in cells and animals. Recent advances are enhancing the efficiency of unnatural amino acid incorporation by creating and evolving orthogonal ribosomes and manipulating the genome. Increasing the number of distinct amino acids that can be site-specifically encoded has been facilitated by the evolution of orthogonal quadruplet decoding ribosomes and the discovery of mutually orthogonal synthetase/tRNA pairs. Rapid progress in moving genetic code expansion from bacteria to eukaryotic cells and animals (C. elegans and D. melanogaster) and the incorporation of useful unnatural amino acids has been aided by the development and application of the pyrrolysyl-transfer RNA (tRNA) synthetase/tRNA pair for unnatural amino acid incorporation. Combining chemoselective reactions with encoded amino acids has facilitated the installation of posttranslational modifications, as well as rapid derivatization with diverse fluorophores for imaging. PMID:24555827

  17. Genetic and genomic interactions of animals with different ploidy levels.

    PubMed

    Bogart, J P; Bi, K

    2013-01-01

    Polyploid animals have independently evolved from diploids in diverse taxa across the tree of life. We review a few polyploid animal species or biotypes where recently developed molecular and cytogenetic methods have significantly improved our understanding of their genetics, reproduction and evolution. Mitochondrial sequences that target the maternal ancestor of a polyploid show that polyploids may have single (e.g. unisexual salamanders in the genus Ambystoma) or multiple (e.g. parthenogenetic polyploid lizards in the genus Aspidoscelis) origins. Microsatellites are nuclear markers that can be used to analyze genetic recombinations, reproductive modes (e.g. Ambystoma) and recombination events (e.g. polyploid frogs such as Pelophylax esculentus). Hom(e)ologous chromosomes and rare intergenomic exchanges in allopolyploids have been distinguished by applying genome-specific fluorescent probes to chromosome spreads. Polyploids arise, and are maintained, through perturbations of the 'normal' meiotic program that would include pre-meiotic chromosome replication and genomic integrity of homologs. When possible, asexual, unisexual and bisexual polyploid species or biotypes interact with diploid relatives, and genes are passed from diploid to polyploid gene pools, which increase genetic diversity and ultimately evolutionary flexibility in the polyploid. When diploid relatives do not exist, polyploids can interact with another polyploid (e.g. species of African Clawed Frogs in the genus Xenopus). Some polyploid fish (e.g. salmonids) and frogs (Xenopus) represent independent lineages whose ancestors experienced whole genome duplication events. Some tetraploid frogs (P. esculentus) and fish (Squaliusalburnoides) may be in the process of becoming independent species, but diploid and triploid forms of these 'species' continue to genetically interact with the comparatively few tetraploid populations. Genetic and genomic interaction between polyploids and diploids is a complex and dynamic process that likely plays a crucial role for the evolution and persistence of polyploid animals. See also other articles in this themed issue. PMID:23751376

  18. Molecular scissors and their application in genetically modified farm animals.

    PubMed

    Petersen, Bjoern; Niemann, Heiner

    2015-06-01

    Molecular scissors (MS), incl. Zinc Finger Nucleases (ZFN), Transcription-activator like endoncleases (TALENS) and meganucleases possess long recognition sites and are thus capable of cutting DNA in a very specific manner. These molecular scissors mediate targeted genetic alterations by enhancing the DNA mutation rate via induction of double-strand breaks at a predetermined genomic site. Compared to conventional homologous recombination based gene targeting, MS can increase the targeting rate 10,000-fold, and gene disruption via mutagenic DNA repair is stimulated at a similar frequency. The successful application of different MS has been shown in different organisms, including insects, amphibians, plants, nematodes, and mammals, including humans. Recently, another novel class of molecular scissors was described that uses RNAs to target a specific genomic site. The CRISPR/Cas9 system is capable of targeting even multiple genomic sites in one shot and thus could be superior to ZFNs or TALEN, especially by its easy design. MS can be successfully employed for improving the understanding of complex physiological systems, producing transgenic animals, incl. creating large animal models for human diseases, creating specific cell lines, and plants, and even for treating human genetic diseases. This review provides an update on molecular scissors, their underlying mechanism and focuses on new opportunities for generating genetically modified farm animals. PMID:25603988

  19. Genetic engineering of microorganisms for biodiesel production.

    PubMed

    Lin, Hui; Wang, Qun; Shen, Qi; Zhan, Jumei; Zhao, Yuhua

    2013-01-01

    Biodiesel, as one type of renewable energy, is an ideal substitute for petroleum-based diesel fuel and is usually made from triacylglycerides by transesterification with alcohols. Biodiesel production based on microbial fermentation aiming to establish more efficient, less-cost and sustainable biodiesel production strategies is under current investigation by various start-up biotechnology companies and research centers. Genetic engineering plays a key role in the transformation of microbes into the desired cell factories with high efficiency of biodiesel production. Here, we present an overview of principal microorganisms used in the microbial biodiesel production and recent advances in metabolic engineering for the modification required. Overexpression or deletion of the related enzymes for de novo synthesis of biodiesel is highlighted with relevant examples. PMID:23222170

  20. Genetic engineering of microorganisms for biodiesel production

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Hui; Wang, Qun; Shen, Qi; Zhan, Jumei; Zhao, Yuhua

    2013-01-01

    Biodiesel, as one type of renewable energy, is an ideal substitute for petroleum-based diesel fuel and is usually made from triacylglycerides by transesterification with alcohols. Biodiesel production based on microbial fermentation aiming to establish more efficient, less-cost and sustainable biodiesel production strategies is under current investigation by various start-up biotechnology companies and research centers. Genetic engineering plays a key role in the transformation of microbes into the desired cell factories with high efficiency of biodiesel production. Here, we present an overview of principal microorganisms used in the microbial biodiesel production and recent advances in metabolic engineering for the modification required. Overexpression or deletion of the related enzymes for de novo synthesis of biodiesel is highlighted with relevant examples. PMID:23222170

  1. Can Man Control His Biological Evolution? A Symposium on Genetic Engineering. Genetic Engineering

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ramsey, Paul

    1972-01-01

    Presented are issues related to genetic engineering. Increased knowledge of techniques to manipulate genes are apt to create confusion about moral values in relation to unborn babies and other living organisms on earth. Human beings may use this knowledge to disturb the balance maintained by nature. (PS)

  2. Human Genetic Engineering: A Survey of Student Value Stances

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wilson, Sara McCormack; And Others

    1975-01-01

    Assesses the values of high school and college students relative to human genetic engineering and recommends that biology educators explore instructional strategies merging human genetic information with value clarification techniques. (LS)

  3. Specific genetic modifications of domestic animals by gene targeting and animal cloning.

    PubMed

    Wang, Bin; Zhou, Jiangfeng

    2003-11-13

    The technology of gene targeting through homologous recombination has been extremely useful for elucidating gene functions in mice. The application of this technology was thought impossible in the large livestock species until the successful creation of the first mammalian clone "Dolly" the sheep. The combination of the technologies for gene targeting of somatic cells with those of animal cloning made it possible to introduce specific genetic mutations into domestic animals. In this review, the principles of gene targeting in somatic cells and the challenges of nuclear transfer using gene-targeted cells are discussed. The relevance of gene targeting in domestic animals for applications in bio-medicine and agriculture are also examined. PMID:14614774

  4. Geomorphological implications of engineering bed sediments by lotic animals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Statzner, Bernhard

    2012-07-01

    Recent developments in zoogeomorphology in combination with the increasing interest of ecologists in ecosystem engineering by organisms initiated considerable research on the impact of running water (i.e., lotic) animals (and other organisms) on fluvial bed sediments and the transport of solids. This research provided multiple evidence from field and laboratory observations and experiments that many species among mammals, amphibians, fish, insects, crustaceans, mollusks, and worms engineer bed sediments of running waters with diverse mechanistic "tools", thereby perturbing or consolidating the sediments in many types of running waters across continents, seasons, habitat types, particle sizes, and discharge levels (baseflow vs. flood). Furthermore, many animals modify the bed-sediment engineering by plants (algae, larger macrophytes, riparian vegetation). Modeling effects of bioturbating lotic animals across species and relatively simple environmental conditions (in mesocosms) provided highly significant results (P-range: < 10- 6- < 10- 15) for nine sediment variables describing baseflow and flood-induced sediment transport as well as sediment surface modifications. For example, bioturbator biomass and/or algal abundance in combination with physical variables, such as baseflow shear stress or gravel size, explained between ~ 70 and ~ 90% of the variability in sediment responses such as the overall baseflow sediment transport and, as a result of the baseflow sediment-surface engineering by the animals, the flood-induced gravel or sand transport. Confronting these seemingly encouraging experimental results with real world conditions, however, illustrates considerable problems to unravel the complexity of biotic and physical factors that vary temporally and interfere/interact non-linearly in a patchy pattern in small parts of real river beds, where baseflow bed-sediment engineering by lotic animals prevents or fosters mass erosion during subsequent floods. Despite these complications, these problems must be solved, as bioturbators such as crayfish and bioconsolidators such as silk-spinning caddisflies may locally modify (i) rates of transport of fluvial sediments over three orders of magnitude and (ii) frequencies of mass transport events over five orders of magnitude. The fastest way to identify promising subsequent research routes in this field would be through a variety of abundance manipulations of lotic organisms (animals and plants having different mechanistic sediment-engineering abilities) in real rivers in combination with a simple approach to assess the critical shear stress in situ for varying types of sediments. This would require joint research by fluvial geomorphologists, hydrologists, and ecologists.

  5. Prevalence and impacts of genetically engineered feedstuffs on livestock populations.

    PubMed

    Van Eenennaam, A L; Young, A E

    2014-10-01

    Globally, food-producing animals consume 70 to 90% of genetically engineered (GE) crop biomass. This review briefly summarizes the scientific literature on performance and health of animals consuming feed containing GE ingredients and composition of products derived from them. It also discusses the field experience of feeding GE feed sources to commercial livestock populations and summarizes the suppliers of GE and non-GE animal feed in global trade. Numerous experimental studies have consistently revealed that the performance and health of GE-fed animals are comparable with those fed isogenic non-GE crop lines. United States animal agriculture produces over 9 billion food-producing animals annually, and more than 95% of these animals consume feed containing GE ingredients. Data on livestock productivity and health were collated from publicly available sources from 1983, before the introduction of GE crops in 1996, and subsequently through 2011, a period with high levels of predominately GE animal feed. These field data sets, representing over 100 billion animals following the introduction of GE crops, did not reveal unfavorable or perturbed trends in livestock health and productivity. No study has revealed any differences in the nutritional profile of animal products derived from GE-fed animals. Because DNA and protein are normal components of the diet that are digested, there are no detectable or reliably quantifiable traces of GE components in milk, meat, and eggs following consumption of GE feed. Globally, countries that are cultivating GE corn and soy are the major livestock feed exporters. Asynchronous regulatory approvals (i.e., cultivation approvals of GE varieties in exporting countries occurring before food and feed approvals in importing countries) have resulted in trade disruptions. This is likely to be increasingly problematic in the future as there are a large number of "second generation" GE crops with altered output traits for improved livestock feed in the developmental and regulatory pipelines. Additionally, advanced techniques to affect targeted genome modifications are emerging, and it is not clear whether these will be encompassed by the current GE process-based trigger for regulatory oversight. There is a pressing need for international harmonization of both regulatory frameworks for GE crops and governance of advanced breeding techniques to prevent widespread disruptions in international trade of livestock feedstuffs in the future. PMID:25184846

  6. Genetic and ecological studies of animals in Chernobyl and Fukushima.

    PubMed

    Mousseau, Timothy A; Mller, Anders P

    2014-01-01

    Recent advances in genetic and ecological studies of wild animal populations in Chernobyl and Fukushima have demonstrated significant genetic, physiological, developmental, and fitness effects stemming from exposure to radioactive contaminants. The few genetic studies that have been conducted in Chernobyl generally show elevated rates of genetic damage and mutation rates. All major taxonomic groups investigated (i.e., birds, bees, butterflies, grasshoppers, dragonflies, spiders, mammals) displayed reduced population sizes in highly radioactive parts of the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone. In Fukushima, population censuses of birds, butterflies, and cicadas suggested that abundances were negatively impacted by exposure to radioactive contaminants, while other groups (e.g., dragonflies, grasshoppers, bees, spiders) showed no significant declines, at least during the first summer following the disaster. Insufficient information exists for groups other than insects and birds to assess effects on life history at this time. The differences observed between Fukushima and Chernobyl may reflect the different times of exposure and the significance of multigenerational mutation accumulation in Chernobyl compared to Fukushima. There was considerable variation among taxa in their apparent sensitivity to radiation and this reflects in part life history, physiology, behavior, and evolutionary history. Interestingly, for birds, population declines in Chernobyl can be predicted by historical mitochondrial DNA base-pair substitution rates that may reflect intrinsic DNA repair ability. PMID:25124815

  7. Transgenic animal models of neurodegeneration based on human genetic studies

    PubMed Central

    Richie, Christopher T.; Hoffer, Barry J.; Airavaara, Mikko

    2011-01-01

    The identification of genes linked to neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease (AD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Huntington's disease (HD) and Parkinson's disease (PD) has led to the development of animal models for studying mechanism and evaluating potential therapies. None of the transgenic models developed based on disease-associated genes have been able to fully recapitulate the behavioral and pathological features of the corresponding disease. However, there has been enormous progress made in identifying potential therapeutic targets and understanding some of the common mechanisms of neurodegeneration. In this review, we will discuss transgenic animal models for AD, ALS, HD and PD that are based on human genetic studies. All of the diseases discussed have active or complete clinical trials for experimental treatments that benefited from transgenic models of the disease. PMID:20931247

  8. Genetic control of programmed cell death during animal development

    PubMed Central

    Conradt, Barbara

    2009-01-01

    The elimination by programmed cell death of unwanted cells is a common feature of animal development. Genetic studies in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster and the mouse have not only revealed the molecular machineries that cause the programmed demise of specific cells, but have also allowed us to get a glimpse of the types of pathways that regulate these machineries during development. Rather than giving a broad overview of programmed cell death during development, the current review will focus on recent advances in our understanding of the regulation of specific programmed cell death events during nematode, fly and mouse development. These studies have revealed that many of the regulatory pathways involved have additional important roles in development, which confirms that the programmed cell death fate is an integral aspect of animal development. PMID:19886811

  9. Genetically Engineered Mice by Pronuclear DNA microinjection

    PubMed Central

    DeMayo, Janet L.; Wang, Jie; Liang, Dongcai; Zhang, Ruina; DeMayo, Francesco J.

    2012-01-01

    The generation of transgenic mice by DNA microinjection is a powerful tool to investigate the molecular regulation of gene expression, development, and disease. The power of this technology is that foreign DNA can be introduced into every cell of a developing organism and the phenotypic impact of this genetic modification can be investigated in a system under the constraints of normal development and physiology. The generation of transgenic mice requires the preparation of the transgene DNA construction, collection of one-cell fertilized mouse embryos, injection of the transgene into mouse embryos, and transfer of the surviving embryos. Mice born from such manipulations are then screened for the presence of the transgene. The execution of these procedures requires a highly efficient system otherwise the cost of the generation of these mice can be cost prohibitive. However, the production of these animals can serve as an invaluable research resource. PMID:23024927

  10. Programmable genetic circuits for pathway engineering.

    PubMed

    Hoynes-O'Connor, Allison; Moon, Tae Seok

    2015-12-01

    Synthetic biology has the potential to provide decisive advances in genetic control of metabolic pathways. However, there are several challenges that synthetic biologists must overcome before this vision becomes a reality. First, a library of diverse and well-characterized sensors, such as metabolite-sensing or condition-sensing promoters, must be constructed. Second, robust programmable circuits that link input conditions with a specific gene regulation response must be developed. Finally, multi-gene targeting strategies must be integrated with metabolically relevant sensors and complex, robust logic. Achievements in each of these areas, which employ the CRISPR/Cas system, in silico modeling, and dynamic sensor-regulators, among other tools, provide a strong basis for future research. Overall, the future for synthetic biology approaches in metabolic engineering holds immense promise. PMID:26322736

  11. Genetically engineered antibody molecules and their application.

    PubMed

    Morrison, S L; Wims, L; Wallick, S; Tan, L; Oi, V T

    1987-01-01

    Immunoglobulin genes can be efficiently expressed following transfection into myeloma cells. Using protoplast fusion, transfection frequencies greater than 10(-3) can be achieved. Compatible plasmids containing two different selectible markers are used to simultaneously deliver heavy and light chain genes to the same cell. To produce molecules with differing specificities the rearranged and expressed variable regions can be cloned from the appropriate hybridoma. In some cases, variable regions from cDNAs can be inserted into the expression vectors. It is possible to manipulate the immunoglobulin genes and produce novel antibody molecules. Antibodies have been produced in which the variable regions from mouse antibodies have been joined to human constant regions. In addition, antibodies with altered constant regions have been produced. These genetically engineered antibodies provide a unique set of reagents to study structure-function relationships within the molecule. They also can potentially be used in the diagnosis and therapy of human disease. PMID:3327412

  12. Genetically engineered mouse models of prostate cancer.

    PubMed

    Parisotto, Maxime; Metzger, Daniel

    2013-04-01

    Despite major improvement in treatment of early stage localised prostate cancer, the distinction between indolent tumors and those that will become aggressive, as well as the lack of efficient therapies of advanced prostate cancer, remain major health problems. Genetically engineered mice (GEM) have been extensively used to investigate the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying prostate tumor initiation and progression, and to evaluate new therapies. Moreover, the recent development of conditional somatic mutagenesis in the mouse prostate offers the possibility to generate new models that more faithfully reproduce the human disease, and thus should contribute to improve diagnosis and treatments. The strengths and weaknesses of various models will be discussed, as well as future opportunities. PMID:23481269

  13. Agrobacterium: natures genetic engineer

    PubMed Central

    Nester, Eugene W.

    2015-01-01

    Agrobacterium was identified as the agent causing the plant tumor, crown gall over 100 years ago. Since then, studies have resulted in many surprising observations. Armin Braun demonstrated that Agrobacterium infected cells had unusual nutritional properties, and that the bacterium was necessary to start the infection but not for continued tumor development. He developed the concept of a tumor inducing principle (TIP), the factor that actually caused the disease. Thirty years later the TIP was shown to be a piece of a tumor inducing (Ti) plasmid excised by an endonuclease. In the next 20 years, most of the key features of the disease were described. The single-strand DNA (T-DNA) with the endonuclease attached is transferred through a type IV secretion system into the host cell where it is likely coated and protected from nucleases by a bacterial secreted protein to form the T-complex. A nuclear localization signal in the endonuclease guides the transferred strand (T-strand), into the nucleus where it is integrated randomly into the host chromosome. Other secreted proteins likely aid in uncoating the T-complex. The T-DNA encodes enzymes of auxin, cytokinin, and opine synthesis, the latter a food source for Agrobacterium. The genes associated with T-strand formation and transfer (vir) map to the Ti plasmid and are only expressed when the bacteria are in close association with a plant. Plant signals are recognized by a two-component regulatory system which activates vir genes. Chromosomal genes with pleiotropic functions also play important roles in plant transformation. The data now explain Brauns old observations and also explain why Agrobacterium is natures genetic engineer. Any DNA inserted between the border sequences which define the T-DNA will be transferred and integrated into host cells. Thus, Agrobacterium has become the major vector in plant genetic engineering. PMID:25610442

  14. Genetic Recombination between Human and Animal Parasites Creates Novel Strains of Human Pathogen

    PubMed Central

    Gibson, Wendy; Peacock, Lori; Ferris, Vanessa; Fischer, Katrin; Livingstone, Jennifer; Thomas, James; Bailey, Mick

    2015-01-01

    Genetic recombination between pathogens derived from humans and livestock has the potential to create novel pathogen strains, highlighted by the influenza pandemic H1N1/09, which was derived from a re-assortment of swine, avian and human influenza A viruses. Here we investigated whether genetic recombination between subspecies of the protozoan parasite, Trypanosoma brucei, from humans and animals can generate new strains of human pathogen, T. b. rhodesiense (Tbr) responsible for sleeping sickness (Human African Trypanosomiasis, HAT) in East Africa. The trait of human infectivity in Tbr is conferred by a single gene, SRA, which is potentially transferable to the animal pathogen Tbb by sexual reproduction. We tracked the inheritance of SRA in crosses of Tbr and Tbb set up by co-transmitting genetically-engineered fluorescent parental trypanosome lines through tsetse flies. SRA was readily transferred into new genetic backgrounds by sexual reproduction between Tbr and Tbb, thus creating new strains of the human pathogen, Tbr. There was no evidence of diminished growth or transmissibility of hybrid trypanosomes carrying SRA. Although expression of SRA is critical to survival of Tbr in the human host, we show that the gene exists as a single copy in a representative collection of Tbr strains. SRA was found on one homologue of chromosome IV in the majority of Tbr isolates examined, but some Ugandan Tbr had SRA on both homologues. The mobility of SRA by genetic recombination readily explains the observed genetic variability of Tbr in East Africa. We conclude that new strains of the human pathogen Tbr are being generated continuously by recombination with the much larger pool of animal-infective trypanosomes. Such novel recombinants present a risk for future outbreaks of HAT. PMID:25816228

  15. Genetic recombination between human and animal parasites creates novel strains of human pathogen.

    PubMed

    Gibson, Wendy; Peacock, Lori; Ferris, Vanessa; Fischer, Katrin; Livingstone, Jennifer; Thomas, James; Bailey, Mick

    2015-03-01

    Genetic recombination between pathogens derived from humans and livestock has the potential to create novel pathogen strains, highlighted by the influenza pandemic H1N1/09, which was derived from a re-assortment of swine, avian and human influenza A viruses. Here we investigated whether genetic recombination between subspecies of the protozoan parasite, Trypanosoma brucei, from humans and animals can generate new strains of human pathogen, T. b. rhodesiense (Tbr) responsible for sleeping sickness (Human African Trypanosomiasis, HAT) in East Africa. The trait of human infectivity in Tbr is conferred by a single gene, SRA, which is potentially transferable to the animal pathogen Tbb by sexual reproduction. We tracked the inheritance of SRA in crosses of Tbr and Tbb set up by co-transmitting genetically-engineered fluorescent parental trypanosome lines through tsetse flies. SRA was readily transferred into new genetic backgrounds by sexual reproduction between Tbr and Tbb, thus creating new strains of the human pathogen, Tbr. There was no evidence of diminished growth or transmissibility of hybrid trypanosomes carrying SRA. Although expression of SRA is critical to survival of Tbr in the human host, we show that the gene exists as a single copy in a representative collection of Tbr strains. SRA was found on one homologue of chromosome IV in the majority of Tbr isolates examined, but some Ugandan Tbr had SRA on both homologues. The mobility of SRA by genetic recombination readily explains the observed genetic variability of Tbr in East Africa. We conclude that new strains of the human pathogen Tbr are being generated continuously by recombination with the much larger pool of animal-infective trypanosomes. Such novel recombinants present a risk for future outbreaks of HAT. PMID:25816228

  16. Genetic Engineering of Optical Properties of Biomaterials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gourley, Paul; Naviaux, Robert; Yaffe, Michael

    2008-03-01

    Baker's yeast cells are easily cultured and can be manipulated genetically to produce large numbers of bioparticles (cells and mitochondria) with controllable size and optical properties. We have recently employed nanolaser spectroscopy to study the refractive index of individual cells and isolated mitochondria from two mutant strains. Results show that biomolecular changes induced by mutation can produce bioparticles with radical changes in refractive index. Wild-type mitochondria exhibit a distribution with a well-defined mean and small variance. In striking contrast, mitochondria from one mutant strain produced a histogram that is highly collapsed with a ten-fold decrease in the mean and standard deviation. In a second mutant strain we observed an opposite effect with the mean nearly unchanged but the variance increased nearly a thousand-fold. Both histograms could be self-consistently modeled with a single, log-normal distribution. The strains were further examined by 2-dimensional gel electrophoresis to measure changes in protein composition. All of these data show that genetic manipulation of cells represents a new approach to engineering optical properties of bioparticles.

  17. Use of genetically-engineered pig donors in islet transplantation.

    PubMed

    Bottino, Rita; Trucco, Massimo

    2015-12-24

    Type 1 diabetes (T1D) is an autoimmune disease wherein the pancreas does not produce enough insulin due to islet beta cell destruction. Despite improvements in delivering exogenous insulin to T1D patients, pancreas or islet transplantation remains the best way to regulate their glycaemia. Results from experimental islet transplantation have improved dramatically in the last 15 years, to the point where it can be comparable to pancreas transplantation, but without the accompanying morbidity associated with this procedure. As with other transplants, the limiting factor in islet allotransplantation is the relatively small number of organs made available by deceased human donors throughout the world. A strong case can be made for islet xenotransplantation to fill the gap between supply and demand; however, transplantation across species presents challenges that are unique to that setting. In the search for the most suitable animal for human xenotransplantation, the pig has many advantages that make it the likely animal of choice. Potentially one of the most beneficial advantages is the ability to genetically engineer porcine donors to be more compatible with human recipients. Several genetic manipulations have already proven useful in relation to hyperacute rejection and inflammation (instant blood mediated inflammatory reaction), with the potential of even further advancement in the near future. PMID:26722651

  18. Use of genetically-engineered pig donors in islet transplantation

    PubMed Central

    Bottino, Rita; Trucco, Massimo

    2015-01-01

    Type 1 diabetes (T1D) is an autoimmune disease wherein the pancreas does not produce enough insulin due to islet beta cell destruction. Despite improvements in delivering exogenous insulin to T1D patients, pancreas or islet transplantation remains the best way to regulate their glycaemia. Results from experimental islet transplantation have improved dramatically in the last 15 years, to the point where it can be comparable to pancreas transplantation, but without the accompanying morbidity associated with this procedure. As with other transplants, the limiting factor in islet allotransplantation is the relatively small number of organs made available by deceased human donors throughout the world. A strong case can be made for islet xenotransplantation to fill the gap between supply and demand; however, transplantation across species presents challenges that are unique to that setting. In the search for the most suitable animal for human xenotransplantation, the pig has many advantages that make it the likely animal of choice. Potentially one of the most beneficial advantages is the ability to genetically engineer porcine donors to be more compatible with human recipients. Several genetic manipulations have already proven useful in relation to hyperacute rejection and inflammation (instant blood mediated inflammatory reaction), with the potential of even further advancement in the near future. PMID:26722651

  19. RNAi-mediated resistance to viruses in genetically engineered plants.

    PubMed

    Ibrahim, Abdulrazak B; Arago, Francisco J L

    2015-01-01

    RNA interference (RNAi) has emerged as a leading technology in designing genetically modified crops engineered to resist viral infection. The last decades have seen the development of a large number of crops whose inherent posttranscriptional gene silencing mechanism has been exploited to target essential viral genes through the production of dsRNA that triggers an endogenous RNA-induced silencing complex (RISC), leading to gene silencing in susceptible viruses conferring them with resistance even before the onset of infection. Selection and breeding events have allowed for establishing this highly important agronomic trait in diverse crops. With improved techniques and the availability of new data on genetic diversity among several viruses, significant progress is being made in engineering plants using RNAi with the release of a number of commercially available crops. Biosafety concerns with respect to consumption of RNAi crops, while relevant, have been addressed, given the fact that experimental evidence using miRNAs associated with the crops shows that they do not pose any health risk to humans and animals. PMID:25740357

  20. An animal model of differential genetic risk for methamphetamine intake

    PubMed Central

    Phillips, Tamara J.; Shabani, Shkelzen

    2015-01-01

    The question of whether genetic factors contribute to risk for methamphetamine (MA) use and dependence has not been intensively investigated. Compared to human populations, genetic animal models offer the advantages of control over genetic family history and drug exposure. Using selective breeding, we created lines of mice that differ in genetic risk for voluntary MA intake and identified the chromosomal addresses of contributory genes. A quantitative trait locus was identified on chromosome 10 that accounts for more than 50% of the genetic variance in MA intake in the selected mouse lines. In addition, behavioral and physiological screening identified differences corresponding with risk for MA intake that have generated hypotheses that are testable in humans. Heightened sensitivity to aversive and certain physiological effects of MA, such as MA-induced reduction in body temperature, are hallmarks of mice bred for low MA intake. Furthermore, unlike MA-avoiding mice, MA-preferring mice are sensitive to rewarding and reinforcing MA effects, and to MA-induced increases in brain extracellular dopamine levels. Gene expression analyses implicate the importance of a network enriched in transcription factor genes, some of which regulate the mu opioid receptor gene, Oprm1, in risk for MA use. Neuroimmune factors appear to play a role in differential response to MA between the mice bred for high and low intake. In addition, chromosome 10 candidate gene studies provide strong support for a trace amine-associated receptor 1 gene, Taar1, polymorphism in risk for MA intake. MA is a trace amine-associated receptor 1 (TAAR1) agonist, and a non-functional Taar1 allele segregates with high MA consumption. Thus, reduced TAAR1 function has the potential to increase risk for MA use. Overall, existing findings support the MA drinking lines as a powerful model for identifying genetic factors involved in determining risk for harmful MA use. Future directions include the development of a binge model of MA intake, examining the effect of withdrawal from chronic MA on MA intake, and studying potential Taar1 gene × gene and gene × environment interactions. These and other studies are intended to improve our genetic model with regard to its translational value to human addiction. PMID:26441502

  1. Genetic Engineering of Plants. Agricultural Research Opportunities and Policy Concerns.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Roberts, Leslie

    Plant scientists and science policymakers from government, private companies, and universities met at a convocation on the genetic engineering of plants. During the convocation, researchers described some of the ways genetic engineering may be used to address agricultural problems. Policymakers delineated and debated changes in research funding

  2. Genetic Engineering of Plants. Agricultural Research Opportunities and Policy Concerns.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Roberts, Leslie

    Plant scientists and science policymakers from government, private companies, and universities met at a convocation on the genetic engineering of plants. During the convocation, researchers described some of the ways genetic engineering may be used to address agricultural problems. Policymakers delineated and debated changes in research funding…

  3. Genetic aspects of autism spectrum disorders: insights from animal models

    PubMed Central

    Banerjee, Swati; Riordan, Maeveen; Bhat, Manzoor A.

    2014-01-01

    Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are a complex neurodevelopmental disorder that display a triad of core behavioral deficits including restricted interests, often accompanied by repetitive behavior, deficits in language and communication, and an inability to engage in reciprocal social interactions. ASD is among the most heritable disorders but is not a simple disorder with a singular pathology and has a rather complex etiology. It is interesting to note that perturbations in synaptic growth, development, and stability underlie a variety of neuropsychiatric disorders, including ASD, schizophrenia, epilepsy, and intellectual disability. Biological characterization of an increasing repertoire of synaptic mutants in various model organisms indicates synaptic dysfunction as causal in the pathophysiology of ASD. Our understanding of the genes and genetic pathways that contribute toward the formation, stabilization, and maintenance of functional synapses coupled with an in-depth phenotypic analysis of the cellular and behavioral characteristics is therefore essential to unraveling the pathogenesis of these disorders. In this review, we discuss the genetic aspects of ASD emphasizing on the well conserved set of genes and genetic pathways implicated in this disorder, many of which contribute to synapse assembly and maintenance across species. We also review how fundamental research using animal models is providing key insights into the various facets of human ASD. PMID:24605088

  4. 76 FR 5780 - Determination of Regulated Status of Alfalfa Genetically Engineered for Tolerance to the...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-02-02

    ...This notice advises the public of the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service's (APHIS) record of decision and determination on the petition regarding the regulated status of alfalfa genetically engineered for tolerance to the herbicide glyphosate based on APHIS' final environmental impact...

  5. 76 FR 39812 - Scotts Miracle-Gro Co.; Regulatory Status of Kentucky Bluegrass Genetically Engineered for...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-07-07

    ..., USDA. ACTION: Notice. SUMMARY: We are advising the public that the Animal and Plant Health Inspection... genetically engineered organisms. Based on the information provided in the letter, we agree that the Kentucky... CFR part 340. When APHIS receives such a request, we review the information provided. If APHIS...

  6. Genetically engineered mesenchymal stem cells: applications in spine therapy.

    PubMed

    Aslan, Hadi; Sheyn, Dima; Gazit, Dan

    2009-01-01

    Spine disorders and intervertebral disc degeneration are considered the main causes for the clinical condition commonly known as back pain. Spinal fusion by implanting autologous bone to produce bony bridging between the two vertebrae flanking the degenerated-intervertebral disc is currently the most efficient treatment for relieving the symptoms of back pain. However, donor-site morbidity, complications and the long healing time limit the success of this approach. Novel developments undertaken by regenerative medicine might bring more efficient and available treatments. Here we discuss the pros and cons of utilizing genetically engineered mesenchymal stem cells for inducing spinal fusion. The combination of the stem cells, gene and carrier are crucial elements for achieving optimal spinal fusion in both small and large animal models, which hopefully will lead to the development of clinical applications. PMID:19105619

  7. Genospirituality: genetic engineering for spiritual and religious enhancement.

    PubMed

    Charlton, Bruce G

    2008-12-01

    The most frequently discussed role for genetic engineering is in relation to medicine, and a second area which provokes discussion is the use of genetic engineering as an enhancement technology. But one neglected area is the potential use of genetic engineering to increase human spiritual and religious experience - or genospirituality. If technologies are devised which can conveniently and safely engineer genes causal of spiritual and religious behaviours, then people may become able to choose their degree of religiosity or spiritual sensitivity. For instance, it may become possible to increase the likelihood of direct religious experience - i.e. 'revelation': the subjective experience of communication from the deity. Or, people may be able to engineer 'animistic' thinking, a mode of cognition in which the significant features of the world - such as large animals, trees, distinctive landscape features - are regarded as sentient and intentional beings; so that the individual experiences a personal relationship with the world. Another potentially popular spiritual ability would probably be shamanism; in which states of altered consciousness (e.g. trances, delirium or dreams) are induced and the shaman may undergo the experience of transformations, 'soul journeys' and contact with a spirit realm. Ideally, shamanistic consciousness could be modulated such that trances were self-induced only when wanted and when it was safe and convenient; and then switched-off again completely when full alertness and concentration are necessary. It seems likely that there will be trade-offs for increased spirituality; such as people becoming less 'driven' to seek status and monetary rewards - as a result of being more spiritually fulfilled people might work less hard and take more leisure. On the other hand, it is also possible that highly moral, altruistic, peaceable and principled behaviours might become more prevalent; and the energy and joyousness of the best churches might spread and be strengthened. Overall, genospirituality would probably be used by people who were unable to have the kind of spiritual or religious experiences which they wanted (or perhaps even needed) in order to lead the kind of life to which they aspired. PMID:18782654

  8. Reversible gelation of genetically engineered macromolecules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petka, Wendy Ann

    Genetic engineering of protein-based polymers offers distinct advantages over conventional synthesis of polymers. Microorganisms can synthesize high molecular weight materials, in relatively large quantities, that are inherently stereoregular, monodisperse, and of controlled sequence. In addition, specific secondary and higher order structures are determined by this protein sequence. As a result, scientists can design polymers to have unique structural features found in natural protein materials and functional properties that are inherent in certain peptide sequences. For this reason, genetic engineering principles were used to create a set of artificial genes that encode twelve macromolecules having both alpha-helical and disordered coil protein sequences with the last amino acid being cysteine (cys) or tryptophan (trp). Triblock copolymer sequences having coiled-coil protein ends, A or B, where A and B represent alpha-helical acidic and basic leucine zipper proteins, separated by a water soluble flexible spacer coil protein, C, where C represents ((AG)sb3PEG) sbn (n = 10 or 28), showed reversible physical gelation behavior. This behavior is believed to result from the aggregation of two or more helices that form physical crosslinks with the disordered coil domain retaining solvent and preventing precipitation of the chain. Diffising wave spectroscopy was used to investigate the gelation behavior of ACsb{10}Acys in buffer when environmental conditions such as pH, temperature, and concentration were varied. The dynamic intensity autocorrelation function recorded over time for 5% (w/v) ACsb{10}Acys showed that the protein behaved as a gel at pH 6.7-8.0 and that the melting point was between 40sp°C and 48sp°C. In addition to the triblock results, the incorporation of 5sp',5sp',5sp'-trifluoroleucine (Tfl) in place of leucine (Leu) in the A and B blocks was accomplished by synthesizing proteins in bacterial hosts auxotrophic for Leu. The substitution of Tfl for Leu in A and B was confirmed by electrospray mass spectrometry. Amino acid analyses performed on purified Tfl A and Tfl B populations suggested 66% and 38% levels of Tfl substitution, respectively. Thermal denaturation temperatures measured by circular dichroism of the Tfl containing helices were higher than those of the corresponding Leu containing helices by 8sp°C and 13sp°C for A and B respectively.

  9. Genetic Engineering and the Amelioration of Genetic Defect

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lederberg, Joshua

    1970-01-01

    Discusses the claims for a brave new world of genetic manipulation" and concludes that if we could agree upon applying genetic (or any other effective) remedies to global problems we probably would need no rescourse to them. Suggests that effective methods of preventing genetic disease are prevention of mutations and detection and containment of…

  10. Genetic Engineering and the Amelioration of Genetic Defect

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lederberg, Joshua

    1970-01-01

    Discusses the claims for a brave new world of genetic manipulation" and concludes that if we could agree upon applying genetic (or any other effective) remedies to global problems we probably would need no rescourse to them. Suggests that effective methods of preventing genetic disease are prevention of mutations and detection and containment of

  11. Antimicrobial functionalized genetically engineered spider silk

    PubMed Central

    Gomes, Sílvia; Leonor, Isabel B.; Mano, João F.; Reis, Rui L.; Kaplan, David L.

    2011-01-01

    Genetically engineered fusion proteins offer potential as multifunctional biomaterials for medical use. Fusion or chimeric proteins can be formed using recombinant DNA technology by combining nucleotide sequences encoding different peptides or proteins that are otherwise not found together in nature. In the present study, three new fusion proteins were designed, cloned and expressed and assessed for function, by combining the consensus sequence of dragline spider silk with three different antimicrobial peptides. The human antimicrobial peptides human neutrophil defensin 2 (HNP-2), human neutrophil defensins 4 (HNP-4) and hepcidin were fused to spider silk through bioengineering. The spider silk domain maintained its self-assembly features, a key aspect of these new polymeric protein biomaterials, allowing the formation of β-sheets to lock in structures via physical interactions without the need for chemical cross-linking. These new functional silk proteins were assessed for antimicrobial activity against Gram - Escherichia coli and Gram + Staphylococcus aureus and microbicidal activity was demonstrated. Dynamic light scattering was used to assess protein aggregation to clarify the antimicrobial patterns observed. Attenuated-total reflectance Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR) and circular dichroism (CD) were used to assess the secondary structure of the new recombinant proteins. In vitro cell studies with a human osteosarcoma cell line (SaOs-2) demonstrated the compatibility of these new proteins with mammalian cells. PMID:21458065

  12. Structure of a genetically engineered molecular motor.

    PubMed

    Kliche, W; Fujita-Becker, S; Kollmar, M; Manstein, D J; Kull, F J

    2001-01-15

    Molecular motors move unidirectionally along polymer tracks, producing movement and force in an ATP-dependent fashion. They achieve this by amplifying small conformational changes in the nucleotide-binding region into force-generating movements of larger protein domains. We present the 2.8 A resolution crystal structure of an artificial actin-based motor. By combining the catalytic domain of myosin II with a 130 A conformational amplifier consisting of repeats 1 and 2 of alpha-actinin, we demonstrate that it is possible to genetically engineer single-polypeptide molecular motors with precisely defined lever arm lengths and specific motile properties. Furthermore, our structure shows the consequences of mutating a conserved salt bridge in the nucleotide-binding region. Disruption of this salt bridge, which is known to severely inhibit ATP hydrolysis activity, appears to interfere with formation of myosin's catalytically active 'closed' conformation. Finally, we describe the structure of alpha-actinin repeats 1 and 2 as being composed of two rigid, triple-helical bundles linked by an uninterrupted alpha-helix. This fold is very similar to the previously described structures of alpha-actinin repeats 2 and 3, and alpha-spectrin repeats 16 and 17. PMID:11226153

  13. 78 FR 13286 - Sharing Certain Business Information Regarding the Introduction of Genetically Engineered...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-02-27

    ... Certain Business Information Regarding the Introduction of Genetically Engineered Organisms With State and... rule. SUMMARY: We are proposing to amend our regulations regarding genetically engineered organisms... regulate certain genetically engineered organisms. DATES: We will consider all comments that we receive...

  14. Genetic diversity of Toxoplasma gondii in animals and humans

    PubMed Central

    Sibley, L. David; Khan, Asis; Ajioka, James W.; Rosenthal, Benjamin M.

    2009-01-01

    Toxoplasma gondii is one of the most widespread parasites of domestic, wild, and companion animals, and it also commonly infects humans. Toxoplasma gondii has a complex life cycle. Sexual development occurs only in the cat gut, while asexual replication occurs in many vertebrate hosts. These features combine to create an unusual population structure. The vast majority of strains in North America and Europe fall into three recently derived, clonal lineages known as types I, II and III. Recent studies have revealed that South American strains are more genetically diverse and comprise distinct genotypes. These differences have been shaped by infrequent sexual recombination, population sweeps and biogeography. The majority of human infections that have been studied in North America and Europe are caused by type II strains, which are also common in agricultural animals from these regions. In contrast, several diverse genotypes of T. gondii are associated with severe infections in humans in South America. Defining the population structure of T. gondii from new regions has important implications for transmission, immunogenicity and pathogenesis. PMID:19687043

  15. Genetically Engineered Mouse Models for Drug Development and Preclinical Trials

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Ho

    2014-01-01

    Drug development and preclinical trials are challenging processes and more than 80% to 90% of drug candidates fail to gain approval from the United States Food and Drug Administration. Predictive and efficient tools are required to discover high quality targets and increase the probability of success in the process of new drug development. One such solution to the challenges faced in the development of new drugs and combination therapies is the use of low-cost and experimentally manageable in vivo animal models. Since the 1980’s, scientists have been able to genetically modify the mouse genome by removing or replacing a specific gene, which has improved the identification and validation of target genes of interest. Now genetically engineered mouse models (GEMMs) are widely used and have proved to be a powerful tool in drug discovery processes. This review particularly covers recent fascinating technologies for drug discovery and preclinical trials, targeted transgenesis and RNAi mouse, including application and combination of inducible system. Improvements in technologies and the development of new GEMMs are expected to guide future applications of these models to drug discovery and preclinical trials. PMID:25143803

  16. Genetically engineered mouse models for drug development and preclinical trials.

    PubMed

    Lee, Ho

    2014-07-01

    Drug development and preclinical trials are challenging processes and more than 80% to 90% of drug candidates fail to gain approval from the United States Food and Drug Administration. Predictive and efficient tools are required to discover high quality targets and increase the probability of success in the process of new drug development. One such solution to the challenges faced in the development of new drugs and combination therapies is the use of low-cost and experimentally manageable in vivo animal models. Since the 1980's, scientists have been able to genetically modify the mouse genome by removing or replacing a specific gene, which has improved the identification and validation of target genes of interest. Now genetically engineered mouse models (GEMMs) are widely used and have proved to be a powerful tool in drug discovery processes. This review particularly covers recent fascinating technologies for drug discovery and preclinical trials, targeted transgenesis and RNAi mouse, including application and combination of inducible system. Improvements in technologies and the development of new GEMMs are expected to guide future applications of these models to drug discovery and preclinical trials. PMID:25143803

  17. Accelerating Cancer Modeling with RNAi and Nongermline Genetically Engineered Mouse Models

    PubMed Central

    Livshits, Geulah; Lowe, Scott W.

    2014-01-01

    For more than two decades, genetically engineered mouse models have been key to our mechanistic understanding of tumorigenesis and cancer progression. Recently, the massive quantity of data emerging from cancer genomics studies has demanded a corresponding increase in the efficiency and throughput of in vivo models for functional testing of putative cancer genes. Already a mainstay of cancer research, recent innovations in RNA interference (RNAi) technology have extended its utility for studying gene function and genetic interactions, enabling tissue-specific, inducible and reversible gene silencing in vivo. Concurrent advances in embryonic stem cell (ESC) culture and genome engineering have accelerated several steps of genetically engineered mouse model production and have facilitated the incorporation of RNAi technology into these models. Here, we review the current state of these technologies and examine how their integration has the potential to dramatically enhance the throughput and capabilities of animal models for cancer. PMID:24184755

  18. EVALUATING THE MAINTENANCE AND EFFECTS OF GENETICALLY ENGINEERED MICROORGANISMS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Concepts and methods were identified for their utility in evaluating the persistence and potential perturbations of genetically engineered microorganisms in the environment. Novel uses of DNA reassociation kinetics and gene probe technologies, in conjunction with conventional bac...

  19. "Genetic Engineering" Gains Momentum (Science/Society Case Study).

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moore, John W.; Moore, Elizabeth A., Eds.

    1980-01-01

    Reviews the benefits and hazards of genetic engineering, or "recombinant-DNA" research. Recent federal safety rules issued by NIH which ease the strict prohibitions on recombinant-DNA research are explained. (CS)

  20. Worldwide trends in the use of animals in research: the contribution of genetically-modified animal models.

    PubMed

    Ormandy, Elisabeth H; Schuppli, Catherine A; Weary, Daniel M

    2009-02-01

    The Three Rs--Reduction, Replacement and Refinement--which were first proposed in 1959 by Russell and Burch, have become widely accepted principles in the governance of humane animal research. However, there is substantial variation in the ways in which different countries document the numbers and types of research animals used, making it difficult to determine how effectively the Three Rs are being implemented. Here, we provide the first data illustrating worldwide trends in animal use for research purposes. To document global trends in animal use, we sampled 2691 articles from 24 countries, published between 1983 and 2007, in four scientific journals. We show that the percentage of articles reporting animal use has risen in the past 15 years. The rising popularity of genetic modification methods has contributed to this trend: reported genetically-modified animal use has more than doubled since 1997. We also show that mice are the most commonly-used species for genetic modification, and that, even in 2007, relatively inefficient random integration methods were still widely used to achieve genetic modification. These results illustrate shortcomings in the effort to implement the Three Rs in animal research. PMID:19292576

  1. Widespread phenotypic and genetic divergence along altitudinal gradients in animals.

    PubMed

    Keller, I; Alexander, J M; Holderegger, R; Edwards, P J

    2013-12-01

    Altitudinal gradients offer valuable study systems to investigate how adaptive genetic diversity is distributed within and between natural populations and which factors promote or prevent adaptive differentiation. The environmental clines along altitudinal gradients tend to be steep relative to the dispersal distance of many organisms, providing an opportunity to study the joint effects of divergent natural selection and gene flow. Temperature is one variable showing consistent altitudinal changes, and altitudinal gradients can therefore provide spatial surrogates for some of the changes anticipated under climate change. Here, we investigate the extent and patterns of adaptive divergence in animal populations along altitudinal gradients by surveying the literature for (i) studies on phenotypic variation assessed under common garden or reciprocal transplant designs and (ii) studies looking for signatures of divergent selection at the molecular level. Phenotypic data show that significant between-population differences are common and taxonomically widespread, involving traits such as mass, wing size, tolerance to thermal extremes and melanization. Several lines of evidence suggest that some of the observed differences are adaptively relevant, but rigorous tests of local adaptation or the link between specific phenotypes and fitness are sorely lacking. Evidence for a role of altitudinal adaptation also exists for a number of candidate genes, most prominently haemoglobin, and for anonymous molecular markers. Novel genomic approaches may provide valuable tools for studying adaptive diversity, also in species that are not amenable to experimentation. PMID:24128377

  2. Virus resistant plums through genetic engineering - from lab to market

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetic engineering (GE) has the potential to revolutionize the genetic improvement of fruit trees and other specialty crops, to provide greater flexibility and speed in responding to changes in climate, production systems and market demands, and to maintain the competitiveness of American agricultu...

  3. Prospects for Genetic Engineering in Plants

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetically modified plants now constitute a significant portion of the worlds agricultural output. Genetically modified corn, soybean, canola, rice, and cotton are being adopted by growers in both industrialized and developing nations at an increasing rate. The most popular products have been eng...

  4. Perspective on Models in Theoretical and Practical Traditions of Knowledge: The Example of Otto Engine Animations

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Haglund, Jesper; Stromdahl, Helge

    2012-01-01

    Nineteen informants (n = 19) were asked to study and comment two computer animations of the Otto combustion engine. One animation was non-interactive and realistic in the sense of depicting a physical engine. The other animation was more idealised, interactive and synchronised with a dynamic PV-graph. The informants represented practical and

  5. Perspective on Models in Theoretical and Practical Traditions of Knowledge: The Example of Otto Engine Animations

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Haglund, Jesper; Stromdahl, Helge

    2012-01-01

    Nineteen informants (n = 19) were asked to study and comment two computer animations of the Otto combustion engine. One animation was non-interactive and realistic in the sense of depicting a physical engine. The other animation was more idealised, interactive and synchronised with a dynamic PV-graph. The informants represented practical and…

  6. Genetically Engineered Mouse Models for Studying Inflammatory Bowel Disease

    PubMed Central

    Mizoguchi, Atsushi; Takeuchi, Takahito; Himuro, Hidetomo; Okada, Toshiyuki; Mizoguchi, Emiko

    2015-01-01

    Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a chronic intestinal inflammatory condition that is mediated by very complex mechanisms controlled by genetic, immune, and environmental factors. More than 74 kinds of genetically engineered mouse strains have been established since 1993 for studying IBD. Although mouse models cannot fully reflect human IBD, they have provided significant contributions for not only understanding the mechanism, but also developing new therapeutic means for IBD. Indeed, 20 kinds of genetically engineered mouse models carry the susceptibility genes identified in human IBD, and the functions of some other IBD susceptibility genes have also been dissected out using mouse models. Cutting-edge technologies such as cell-specific and inducible knockout systems, which were recently employed to mouse IBD models, have further enhanced the ability of investigators to provide important and unexpected rationales for developing new therapeutic strategies for IBD. In this review article, we briefly introduce 74 kinds of genetically engineered mouse models that spontaneously develop intestinal inflammation. PMID:26387641

  7. Teacher-to-Teacher: An Annotated Bibliography on DNA and Genetic Engineering.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mertens, Thomas R., Comp.

    1984-01-01

    Presented is an annotated bibliography of 24 books on DNA and genetic engineering. Areas considered in these books include: basic biological concepts to help understand advances in genetic engineering; applications of genetic engineering; social, legal, and moral issues of genetic engineering; and historical aspects leading to advances in…

  8. Teacher-to-Teacher: An Annotated Bibliography on DNA and Genetic Engineering.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mertens, Thomas R., Comp.

    1984-01-01

    Presented is an annotated bibliography of 24 books on DNA and genetic engineering. Areas considered in these books include: basic biological concepts to help understand advances in genetic engineering; applications of genetic engineering; social, legal, and moral issues of genetic engineering; and historical aspects leading to advances in

  9. Genetically Engineered Plants and Foods: A Scientist's Analysis of the Issues (Part I).

    PubMed

    Lemaux, Peggy G

    2008-01-01

    Through the use of the new tools of genetic engineering, genes can be introduced into the same plant or animal species or into plants or animals that are not sexually compatible-the latter is a distinction with classical breeding. This technology has led to the commercial production of genetically engineered (GE) crops on approximately 250 million acres worldwide. These crops generally are herbicide and pest tolerant, but other GE crops in the pipeline focus on other traits. For some farmers and consumers, planting and eating foods from these crops are acceptable; for others they raise issues related to safety of the foods and the environment. In Part I of this review some general and food issues raised regarding GE crops and foods will be addressed. Responses to these issues, where possible, cite peer-reviewed scientific literature. In Part II to appear in 2009, issues related to environmental and socioeconomic aspects of GE crops and foods will be covered. PMID:18284373

  10. 76 FR 78232 - Monsanto Co.; Determination of Nonregulated Status for Soybean Genetically Engineered To Have a...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-12-16

    ... the introduction of certain genetically engineered organisms. Our determination is based on our... pests. Such genetically engineered organisms and products are considered ``regulated articles.'' The... genetically modified organisms and glyphosate. APHIS has addressed the issues raised during the comment...

  11. Conservation of Swine Genetics by the National Animal Germplasm Program (NAGP) after One Decade

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Given the continued threats to genetic diversity, and that this is the 10th year NAGP has been operating, it is useful to assess the progress made to date in securing animal genetic resources in general and swine genetic resources specifically. In 1999 the USDA-Agricultural Research Service (ARS) es...

  12. Chapter VIII. Contributions of propagation techniques and genetic modification to breeding - genetic engineering for disease resistance

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetic engineering offers an opportunity to develop flower bulb crops with resistance to fungal, viral, and bacterial pathogens. Several of the flower bulb crops, Lilium spp., Gladiolus, Zantedeschia, Muscari, Hyacinthus, Narcissus, Ornithogalum, Iris, and Alstroemeria, have been transformed with t...

  13. GENETIC ENGINEERING OF ENHANCED MICROBIAL NITRIFICATION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Experiments were conducted to introduce genetic information in the form of antibiotic or mercuric ion resistance genes into Nitrobacter hamburgensis strain X14. The resistance genes were either stable components of broad host range plasmids or transposable genes on methods for p...

  14. Genetic engineering of sulfur-degrading Sulfolobus

    SciTech Connect

    Ho, N.W.Y.

    1991-01-01

    The objectives of the proposed research is to first establish a plasmid-mediated genetic transformation system for the sulfur degrading Sulfolobus, and then to clone and overexpress the genes encoding the organic-sulfur-degrading enzymes from Sulfolobus- as well as from other microorganisms, to develop a Sulfolobus-based microbial process for the removal of both organic and inorganic sulfur from coal.

  15. GENETICALLY ENGINEERED CROPS WITH RESISTANCE TO INSECTS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetic transformation technology allows genes to be moved across species, greatly improving the opportunities to breed plants for insect control. The Cry1Ac protein in cotton, Gossypium hirsutum L., was registered by Monsanto as Bollgard, and targeted to tobacco budworm, Heliothis virescens (Fab),...

  16. Genetically Engineered Materials for Biofuels Production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Raab, Michael

    2012-02-01

    Agrivida, Inc., is an agricultural biotechnology company developing industrial crop feedstocks for the fuel and chemical industries. Agrivida's crops have improved processing traits that enable efficient, low cost conversion of the crops' cellulosic components into fermentable sugars. Currently, pretreatment and enzymatic conversion of the major cell wall components, cellulose and hemicellulose, into fermentable sugars is the most expensive processing step that prevents widespread adoption of biomass in biofuels processes. To lower production costs we are consolidating pretreatment and enzyme production within the crop. In this strategy, transgenic plants express engineered cell wall degrading enzymes in an inactive form, which can be reactivated after harvest. We have engineered protein elements that disrupt enzyme activity during normal plant growth. Upon exposure to specific processing conditions, the engineered enzymes are converted into their active forms. This mechanism significantly lowers pretreatment costs and enzyme loadings (>75% reduction) below those currently available to the industry.

  17. TMTI Task 1.6 Genetic Engineering Methods and Detection

    SciTech Connect

    Slezak, T; Lenhoff, R; Allen, J; Borucki, M; Vitalis, E; Gardner, S

    2009-12-04

    A large number of GE techniques can be adapted from other microorganisms to biothreat bacteria and viruses. Detection of GE in a microorganism increases in difficulty as the size of the genetic change decreases. In addition to the size of the engineered change, the consensus genomic sequence of the microorganism can impact the difficulty of detecting an engineered change in genomes that are highly variable from strain to strain. This problem will require comprehensive databases of whole genome sequences for more genetically variable biothreat bacteria and viruses. Preliminary work with microarrays for detecting synthetic elements or virulence genes and analytic bioinformatic approaches for whole genome sequence comparison to detect genetic engineering show promise for attacking this difficult problem but a large amount of future work remains.

  18. Genetic engineering approaches to improve bioethanol production from maize.

    PubMed

    Torney, Franois; Moeller, Lorena; Scarpa, Andra; Wang, Kan

    2007-06-01

    Biofuels such as bioethanol are becoming a viable alternative to fossil fuels. Utilizing agricultural biomass for the production of biofuel has drawn much interest in many science and engineering disciplines. As one of the major crops, maize offers promise in this regard. Compared to other crops with biofuel potential, maize can provide both starch (seed) and cellulosic (stover) material for bioethanol production. However, the combination of food, feed and fuel in one crop, although appealing, raises concerns related to the land delineation and distribution of maize grown for energy versus food and feed. To avoid this dilemma, the conversion of maize biomass into bioethanol must be improved. Conventional breeding, molecular marker assisted breeding and genetic engineering have already had, and will continue to have, important roles in maize improvement. The rapidly expanding information from genomics and genetics combined with improved genetic engineering technologies offer a wide range of possibilities for enhanced bioethanol production from maize. PMID:17399975

  19. [Research progress of genetic engineering on medicinal plants].

    PubMed

    Teng, Zhong-qiu; Shen, Ye

    2015-02-01

    The application of genetic engineering technology in modern agriculture shows its outstanding role in dealing with food shortage. Traditional medicinal plant cultivation and collection have also faced with challenges, such as lack of resources, deterioration of environment, germplasm of recession and a series of problems. Genetic engineering can be used to improve the disease resistance, insect resistance, herbicides resistant ability of medicinal plant, also can improve the medicinal plant yield and increase the content of active substances in medicinal plants. Thus, the potent biotechnology can play an important role in protection and large area planting of medicinal plants. In the development of medicinal plant genetic engineering, the safety of transgenic medicinal plants should also be paid attention to. A set of scientific safety evaluation and judgment standard which is suitable for transgenic medicinal plants should be established based on the recognition of the particularity of medicinal plants. PMID:26137675

  20. From analysis of mutants to genetic engineering.

    PubMed

    von Wettstein, Diter

    2007-01-01

    This chapter describes the research of developing transgenic barley for synthesis of recombinant proteins with practical significance and of metabolic engineering of proanthocyanidin-free barley. The results were obtained by graduate students, postdoctoral researchers, and visiting scientists at the Carlsberg Laboratory from 1972-1996 and during the past ten years at Washington State University. It is written in appreciation of their enthusiasm, skill, and perseverance. PMID:17067283

  1. Current development in genetic engineering strategies of Bacillus species.

    PubMed

    Dong, Huina; Zhang, Dawei

    2014-01-01

    The complete sequencing and annotation of the genomes of industrially-important Bacillus species has enhanced our understanding of their properties, and allowed advances in genetic manipulations in other Bacillus species. Post-genomic studies require simple and highly efficient tools to enable genetic manipulation. Here, we summarize the recent progress in genetic engineering strategies for Bacillus species. We review the available genetic tools that have been developed in Bacillus species, as well as methods developed in other species that may also be applicable in Bacillus. Furthermore, we address the limitations and challenges of the existing methods, and discuss the future research prospects in developing novel and useful tools for genetic modification of Bacillus species. PMID:24885003

  2. Current development in genetic engineering strategies of Bacillus species

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    The complete sequencing and annotation of the genomes of industrially-important Bacillus species has enhanced our understanding of their properties, and allowed advances in genetic manipulations in other Bacillus species. Post-genomic studies require simple and highly efficient tools to enable genetic manipulation. Here, we summarize the recent progress in genetic engineering strategies for Bacillus species. We review the available genetic tools that have been developed in Bacillus species, as well as methods developed in other species that may also be applicable in Bacillus. Furthermore, we address the limitations and challenges of the existing methods, and discuss the future research prospects in developing novel and useful tools for genetic modification of Bacillus species. PMID:24885003

  3. A genetic comparison of Brucella abortus isolates from animals and humans by using an MLVA assay.

    PubMed

    Her, Moon; Kang, Sung-Il; Kim, Jong-Wan; Kim, Ji-Yeon; Hwang, In-Yeong; Jung, Suk-Chan; Park, Sang Hee; Park, Mi Yeoun; Yoo, Hansang

    2010-12-01

    The MLVA assay is known to have a high ability to identify and discriminate Brucella species, so that it can be used as an epidemiological tool to discriminate Brucella isolates originating from restricted geographic sources. In this study, the genetic profiles of 38 B. abortus isolates from humans were analyzed and compared with genotypes from animal isolates in South Korea. As a result, it was found that they did not show high genetic diversity and were compacted. They were clustered together with animal isolates, showing a significant correlation to regional distributions. With its ability to prove a significant genetic correlation among B. abortus isolates from animals and humans in South Korea, the MLVA assay could be utilized as part of a program to control and eradicate brucellosis, one of the major zoonoses. This study represents the first data of genetic correlation of B. abortus isolates from humans and animals in South Korea. PMID:21193833

  4. Current Progress of Genetically Engineered Pig Models for Biomedical Research

    PubMed Central

    Gün, Gökhan

    2014-01-01

    Abstract The first transgenic pigs were generated for agricultural purposes about three decades ago. Since then, the micromanipulation techniques of pig oocytes and embryos expanded from pronuclear injection of foreign DNA to somatic cell nuclear transfer, intracytoplasmic sperm injection-mediated gene transfer, lentiviral transduction, and cytoplasmic injection. Mechanistically, the passive transgenesis approach based on random integration of foreign DNA was developed to active genetic engineering techniques based on the transient activity of ectopic enzymes, such as transposases, recombinases, and programmable nucleases. Whole-genome sequencing and annotation of advanced genome maps of the pig complemented these developments. The full implementation of these tools promises to immensely increase the efficiency and, in parallel, to reduce the costs for the generation of genetically engineered pigs. Today, the major application of genetically engineered pigs is found in the field of biomedical disease modeling. It is anticipated that genetically engineered pigs will increasingly be used in biomedical research, since this model shows several similarities to humans with regard to physiology, metabolism, genome organization, pathology, and aging. PMID:25469311

  5. Genetic engineering of syringyl-enriched lignin in plants

    DOEpatents

    Chiang, Vincent Lee; Li, Laigeng

    2004-11-02

    The present invention relates to a novel DNA sequence, which encodes a previously unidentified lignin biosynthetic pathway enzyme, sinapyl alcohol dehydrogenase (SAD) that regulates the biosynthesis of syringyl lignin in plants. Also provided are methods for incorporating this novel SAD gene sequence or substantially similar sequences into a plant genome for genetic engineering of syringyl-enriched lignin in plants.

  6. GENETIC ENGINEERING OF PEANUT FOR REDUCTION OF AFLATOXIN CONTAMINATION

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Through genetic engineering of peanut, we have focused mainly on two levels of protection against aflatoxin contamination: the entry of spores through insect-damaged tissues and the growth of the fungus after entry, although interfering with the aflatoxin biosynthetic pathway also is of interest. T...

  7. Genetic Engineering--A Lesson on Bioethics for the Classroom.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Armstrong, Kerri; Weber, Kurt

    1991-01-01

    A unit designed to cover the topic of genetic engineering and its ethical considerations is presented. Students are expected to learn the material while using a debate format. A list of objectives for the unit, the debate format, and the results from an opinion questionnaire are described. (KR)

  8. A Simple Interactive Introduction to Teaching Genetic Engineering

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Child, Paula

    2013-01-01

    In the UK, at key stage 4, students aged 14-15 studying GCSE Core Science or Unit 1 of the GCSE Biology course are required to be able to describe the process of genetic engineering to produce bacteria that can produce insulin. The simple interactive introduction described in this article allows students to consider the problem, devise a model and…

  9. Competitiveness of a Genetically Engineered Strain of Trichoderma virens

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The intraspecific competitiveness of a genetically engineered strain of Trichoderma virens was assessed relative to the non-transformed, progenitor strain and an isogenic, auxotrophic strain using a replacement series design. The transformed strain was less fit, but appeared more competitive than t...

  10. A Simple Interactive Introduction to Teaching Genetic Engineering

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Child, Paula

    2013-01-01

    In the UK, at key stage 4, students aged 14-15 studying GCSE Core Science or Unit 1 of the GCSE Biology course are required to be able to describe the process of genetic engineering to produce bacteria that can produce insulin. The simple interactive introduction described in this article allows students to consider the problem, devise a model and

  11. Current progress of genetically engineered pig models for biomedical research.

    PubMed

    Gn, Gkhan; Kues, Wilfried A

    2014-12-01

    The first transgenic pigs were generated for agricultural purposes about three decades ago. Since then, the micromanipulation techniques of pig oocytes and embryos expanded from pronuclear injection of foreign DNA to somatic cell nuclear transfer, intracytoplasmic sperm injection-mediated gene transfer, lentiviral transduction, and cytoplasmic injection. Mechanistically, the passive transgenesis approach based on random integration of foreign DNA was developed to active genetic engineering techniques based on the transient activity of ectopic enzymes, such as transposases, recombinases, and programmable nucleases. Whole-genome sequencing and annotation of advanced genome maps of the pig complemented these developments. The full implementation of these tools promises to immensely increase the efficiency and, in parallel, to reduce the costs for the generation of genetically engineered pigs. Today, the major application of genetically engineered pigs is found in the field of biomedical disease modeling. It is anticipated that genetically engineered pigs will increasingly be used in biomedical research, since this model shows several similarities to humans with regard to physiology, metabolism, genome organization, pathology, and aging. PMID:25469311

  12. GENETIC ENGINEERING AND THE DEVELOPMENT OF NEW POLLUTION CONTROL TECHNOLOGIES

    EPA Science Inventory

    This report relates genetic engineering and biological waste treatment, so that opportunities for its improvement can be identified and evaluated. It describes the state of development of gene manipulation and natural limits to biodegradation as of early 1983. It identifies a num...

  13. The role of genetically engineered pigs in xenotransplantation research.

    PubMed

    Cooper, David Kc; Ekser, Burcin; Ramsoondar, Jagdeece; Phelps, Carol; Ayares, David

    2016-01-01

    There is a critical shortage in the number of deceased human organs that become available for the purposes of clinical transplantation. This problem might be resolved by the transplantation of organs from pigs genetically engineered to protect them from the human immune response. The pathobiological barriers to successful pig organ transplantation in primates include activation of the innate and adaptive immune systems, coagulation dysregulation and inflammation. Genetic engineering of the pig as an organ source has increased the survival of the transplanted pig heart, kidney, islet and corneal graft in non-human primates (NHPs) from minutes to months or occasionally years. Genetic engineering may also contribute to any physiological barriers that might be identified, as well as to reducing the risks of transfer of a potentially infectious micro-organism with the organ. There are now an estimated 40 or more genetic alterations that have been carried out in pigs, with some pigs expressing five or six manipulations. With the new technology now available, it will become increasingly common for a pig to express even more genetic manipulations, and these could be tested in the pig-to-NHP models to assess their efficacy and benefit. It is therefore likely that clinical trials of pig kidney, heart and islet transplantation will become feasible in the near future. Copyright 2015 Pathological Society of Great Britain and Ireland. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. PMID:26365762

  14. Meganucleases Revolutionize the Production of Genetically Engineered Pigs for the Study of Human Diseases.

    PubMed

    Redel, Bethany K; Prather, Randall S

    2016-04-01

    Animal models of human diseases are critically necessary for developing an in-depth knowledge of disease development and progression. In addition, animal models are vital to the development of potential treatments or even cures for human diseases. Pigs are exceptional models as their size, physiology, and genetics are closer to that of humans than rodents. In this review, we discuss the use of pigs in human translational research and the evolving technology that has increased the efficiency of genetically engineering pigs. With the emergence of the clustered, regularly interspaced, short palindromic repeat (CRISPR)/CRISPR-associated (Cas) protein 9 system technology, the cost and time it takes to genetically engineer pigs has markedly decreased. We will also discuss the use of another meganuclease, the transcription activator-like effector nucleases , to produce pigs with severe combined immunodeficiency by developing targeted modifications of the recombination activating gene 2 (RAG2).RAG2mutant pigs may become excellent animals to facilitate the development of xenotransplantation, regenerative medicine, and tumor biology. The use of pig biomedical models is vital for furthering the knowledge of, and for treating human, diseases. PMID:26516165

  15. Genetic and somatic effects in animals maintained on tritiated water

    SciTech Connect

    Carsten, A.L.; Brooks, A.; Commerford, S.L.; Cronkite, E.P.

    1981-01-01

    The possible genetic (dominant lethal mutations (DLM) and cytogenetic changes in the regenerating liver) and somatic (hematopoietic stem cell changes, growth and nonspecific life time shortening) effects in mice maintained on tritiated water (HTO) over two generations was investigated. Results to date are summarized. (ACR)

  16. Adding 'epi-' to behaviour genetics: implications for animal domestication.

    PubMed

    Jensen, Per

    2015-01-01

    In this review, it is argued that greatly improved understanding of domestication may be gained from extending the field of behaviour genetics to also include epigenetics. Domestication offers an interesting framework of rapid evolutionary changes caused by well-defined selection pressures. Behaviour is an important phenotype in this context, as it represents the primary means of response to environmental challenges. An overview is provided of the evidence for genetic involvement in behavioural control and the presently used methods for finding so-called behaviour genes. This shows that evolutionary changes in behaviour are to a large extent correlated to changes in patterns of gene expression, which brings epigenetics into the focus. This area is concerned with the mechanisms controlling the timing and extent of gene expression, and a lot of focus has been placed on methylation of cytosine in promoter regions, usually associated with genetic downregulation. The review considers the available evidence that environmental input, for example stress, can modify methylation and other epigenetic marks and subsequently affect behaviour. Furthermore, several studies are reviewed, demonstrating that acquired epigenetic modifications can be inherited and cause trans-generational behaviour changes. In conclusion, epigenetics may signify a new paradigm in this respect, as it shows that genomic modifications can be caused by environmental signals, and random mutations in DNA sequence are therefore not the only sources of heritable genetic variation. PMID:25568449

  17. CURRENT EFFORTS IN CONSERVATION OF ANIMAL GENETIC DIVERSITY

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Changing consumer demand, threat of disease, and contraction of genetic diversity drive the need to establish vibrant livestock conservation activities. For effective in-situ and ex-situ conservation strategies to function, dialogue and synergistic action between public and private sectors must occu...

  18. Metabolic engineering: techniques for analysis of targets for genetic manipulations.

    PubMed

    Nielsen, J

    Metabolic engineering has been defined as the purposeful modification of intermediary metabolism using recombinant DNA techniques. With this definition metabolic engineering includes: (1) inserting new pathways in microorganisms with the aim of producing novel metabolites, e.g., production of polyketides by Streptomyces; (2) production of heterologous peptides, e.g., production of human insulin, erythropoitin, and tPA; and (3) improvement of both new and existing processes, e.g., production of antibiotics and industrial enzymes. Metabolic engineering is a multidisciplinary approach, which involves input from chemical engineers, molecular biologists, biochemists, physiologists, and analytical chemists. Obviously, molecular biology is central in the production of novel products, as well as in the improvement of existing processes. However, in the latter case, input from other disciplines is pivotal in order to target the genetic modifications; with the rapid developments in molecular biology, progress in the field is likely to be limited by procedures to identify the optimal genetic changes. Identification of the optimal genetic changes often requires a meticulous mapping of the cellular metabolism at different operating conditions, and the application of metabolic engineering to process optimization is, therefore, expected mainly to have an impact on the improvement of processes where yield, productivity, and titer are important design factors, i.e., in the production of metabolites and industrial enzymes. Despite the prospect of obtaining major improvement through metabolic engineering, this approach is, however, not expected to completely replace the classical approach to strain improvement-random mutagenesis followed by screening. Identification of the optimal genetic changes for improvement of a given process requires analysis of the underlying mechanisms, at best, at the molecular level. To reveal these mechanisms a number of different techniques may be applied: (1) detailed physiological studies, (2) metabolic flux analysis (MFA), (3) metabolic control analysis (MCA), (4) thermodynamic analysis of pathways, and (5) kinetic modeling. In this article, these different techniques are discussed and their applications to the analysis of different processes are illustrated. PMID:10191381

  19. Genetic diversity of Toxoplasma gondii in animals and humans

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Toxoplasma gondii is one of the most common parasites of domestic, wild, and companion animals, and it also infects approximately 25% of the worlds human population. T. gondii has a complex life cycle. Sexual development occurs only in the cat gut, while asexual replication and transmission occur i...

  20. A molecular genetic approach for forensic animal species identification.

    PubMed

    Bellis, C; Ashton, K J; Freney, L; Blair, B; Griffiths, L R

    2003-07-01

    This study investigated potential markers within chromosomal, mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and ribosomal RNA (rRNA) with the aim of developing a DNA based method to allow differentiation between animal species. Such discrimination tests may have important applications in the forensic science, agriculture, quarantine and customs fields. DNA samples from five different animal individuals within the same species for 10 species of animal (including human) were analysed. DNA extraction and quantitation followed by PCR amplification and GeneScan visualisation formed the basis of the experimental analysis. Five gene markers from three different types of genes were investigated. These included genomic markers for the beta-actin and TP53 tumor suppressor gene. Mitochondrial DNA markers, designed by Bataille et al. [Forensic Sci. Int. 99 (1999) 165], examined the Cytochrome b gene and Hypervariable Displacement Loop (D-Loop) region. Finally, a ribosomal RNA marker for the 28S rRNA gene optimised by Naito et al. [J. Forensic Sci. 37 (1992) 396] was used as a possible marker for speciation. Results showed a difference of only several base pairs between all species for the beta-actin and 28S markers, with the exception of Sus scrofa (pig) beta-actin fragment length, which produced a significantly smaller fragment. Multiplexing of Cytochrome b and D-Loop markers gave limited species information, although positive discrimination of human DNA was evident. The most specific and discriminatory results were shown using the TP53 gene since this marker produced greatest fragment size differences between animal species studied. Sample differentiation for all species was possible following TP53 amplification, suggesting that this gene could be used as a potential animal species identifier. PMID:12850402

  1. Genetically engineered mouse models for lung cancer.

    PubMed

    Kwak, I; Tsai, S Y; DeMayo, F J

    2004-01-01

    The lung is a complex organ consisting of numerous cell types that function to ensure sufficient gas exchange to oxygenate the blood. In order to accomplish this function, the lung must be exposed to the external environment and at the same time maintain a homeostatic balance between its function in gas exchange and the maintenance of inflammatory balance. During the past two decades, as molecular methodologies have evolved with the sequencing of entire genomes, the use of in vivo models to elucidate the molecular mechanisms involved in pulmonary physiology and disease have increased. The mouse has emerged as a potent model to investigate pulmonary physiology due to the explosion in molecular methods that now allow for the developmental and tissue-specific regulation of gene transcription. Initial efforts to manipulate gene expression in the mouse genome resulted in the generation of transgenic mice characterized by the constitutive expression of a specific gene and knockout mice characterized by the ablation of a specific gene. The utility of these original mouse models was limited, in many cases, by phenotypes resulting in embryonic or neonatal lethality that prevented analysis of the impact of the genetic manipulation on pulmonary biology. Second-generation transgenic mouse models employ multiple strategies that can either activate or silence gene expression thereby providing extensive temporal and spatial control of the experimental parameters of gene expression. These highly regulated mouse models are intended to serve as a foundation for further investigation of the molecular basis of human disease such as tumorigenesis. This review describes the principles, progress, and application of systems that are currently employed in the conditional regulation of gene expression in the investigation of lung cancer. PMID:14977417

  2. Genetically engineered luminescent proteins in biosensing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rowe, Laura; Ensor, Mark; Scott, Daniel; Deo, Sapna; Daunert, Sylvia

    2006-02-01

    Luminescent proteins originally isolated from marine or terrestrial organisms have played a key role in the development of several biosensing systems. These proteins have been used in a variety of applications including, immunoassays, binding assays, cell-based sensing, high throughput screening, optical imaging, etc. Among the luminescent proteins isolated, the bioluminescent protein aequorin has been one of the proteins at the forefront in terms of its use in a vast number of biosensing systems. In our laboratory, we have employed aequorin as a label in the development of highly sensitive assays through chemical and genetic modifications from single step analysis of physiologically important molecules in biological fluids. An important aspect of optimizing these assays for clinical use involves understanding the stability of the various aequorin variants that are available. To this end we have designed several stability studies involving three important aequorin mutants, Mutant S, Mutant 5, and Mutant 53. The cysteine free aequorin, Mutant S, has been the most ubiquitously used aequorin variant in our laboratory because of its increased stability and activity as compared to native aequorin. Mutant 5 and Mutant 53 contain a single cyteine residue at position 5 and 53 in the protein, respectively. Because of the presence of a single cysteine residue, Mutant 5 and Mutant 53 both can be site-specifically conjugated. This site specific conjugation capability gives Mutant 5 and Mutant 53 an advantage over native aequorin when developing assays. Additional studies optimizing the expression, purification, and charging of aequorin Mutant S were also performed. A thorough understanding of the efficient expression, purification, and storage of these aequorin mutants will allow for the more practical utilization of these mutants in the development of future biosensing systems.

  3. Genetic engineering of sulfur-degrading Sulfolobus

    SciTech Connect

    Ho, N.W.Y. . Lab. of Renewable Resources Engineering)

    1991-01-01

    Recent studies have shown that some microorganisms can play a significant role in removing the sulfur compound from coal. Sulfolobus acidocaldarius and related species are such microorganisms. The objective of this project is to develop a genetic transformation system for Sulfolobus species so that they could become the ideal host to overproduce homologous and heterologous enzymes that are most effective for the removal of sulfur from coal, particularly organic sulfur. Last quarter, we have identified three chemicals that can inhibit the growth of S. Acidocaldarius. These chemicals can be part of the selection system for the development of a transformation system for S. acidocaldarius. Due to the fact that Sulfolobus shibatae B12 becomes increasingly more attractive as a host for housing genes encoding desulfurization enzymes, in this period we also studied the affect of these three chemicals to growth of S. shibatae B12. We found that S. shibatae B12 is also sensitive to these chemicals. This quarter we succeeded in the isolation and purification of the double-stranded DNA virus from S. shibatae B12. Furthermore, the individual EcoRI and BamH1 fragments of the virus have also been cloned into pUC19 plasmid. These plasmids will be used for the construction of the final E. coli-Sulfolobus shuttle vector. 5 Flurouracil (5FU) is one of the chemicals that inhibit growth of Sulfolobus. Resistance strain of S. acidocaldarius to 5FU has also been isolated. DNA from the 5FU resistance strain has also been isolated. 2 figs.

  4. Quantitative- and molecular-genetic effects on animal well-being: adaptive mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Newman, S

    1994-06-01

    Domestic farm animals play an important role in meeting some basic needs of humankind, especially food and clothing. The aspects of genetic improvement programs in livestock production pertinent to animal welfare and animal well-being are reviewed. A link is made between the evolutionary processes of adaptation and domestication and animal well-being. Animal behavior is a component of all these. Thus, the genetics of behavior may provide clues to the well-being of farm animal populations, and it will also be of relevance to public opinion issues of animal welfare. Many expressions of behavior by domestic livestock may be influenced by those processes that change gene as well as genotypic frequencies such as inbreeding, drift, and artificial selection. The environment in which the individual lives will also play a role, along with the interaction between genotype and environment. Selection for or against such behaviors as aggressiveness, docility, response to stress, and certain sexual behaviors in some livestock species has often been successful. This points to the existence of additive genetic variation for behavior, and scope for the inclusion of behavioral traits into selection programs, if these measures are shown to be related to welfare. Negative relationships between behaviors associated with well-being and traits of economic importance have been reported in most livestock species. However, estimates of genetic parameters, especially genetic correlations between objective measures of well-being and production traits, are scarce. There have been no comprehensive studies of the welfare of transgenic animals reported in the scientific literature. Increased use of biotechnology in animal agriculture, coupled with greater public scrutiny of livestock industries, may precipitate decisions concerning the interface of behavior and genetics that need to be addressed before scientists can conduct appropriate experimental evaluations. PMID:8071192

  5. Genetically engineered mouse models for studying inflammatory bowel disease.

    PubMed

    Mizoguchi, Atsushi; Takeuchi, Takahito; Himuro, Hidetomo; Okada, Toshiyuki; Mizoguchi, Emiko

    2016-01-01

    Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a chronic intestinal inflammatory condition that is mediated by very complex mechanisms controlled by genetic, immune, and environmental factors. More than 74 kinds of genetically engineered mouse strains have been established since 1993 for studying IBD. Although mouse models cannot fully reflect human IBD, they have provided significant contributions for not only understanding the mechanism, but also developing new therapeutic means for IBD. Indeed, 20 kinds of genetically engineered mouse models carry the susceptibility genes identified in human IBD, and the functions of some other IBD susceptibility genes have also been dissected out using mouse models. Cutting-edge technologies such as cell-specific and inducible knockout systems, which were recently employed to mouse IBD models, have further enhanced the ability of investigators to provide important and unexpected rationales for developing new therapeutic strategies for IBD. In this review article, we briefly introduce 74 kinds of genetically engineered mouse models that spontaneously develop intestinal inflammation. Copyright 2015 Pathological Society of Great Britain and Ireland. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. PMID:26387641

  6. Genetic Engineering of Algae for Enhanced Biofuel Production ▿

    PubMed Central

    Radakovits, Randor; Jinkerson, Robert E.; Darzins, Al; Posewitz, Matthew C.

    2010-01-01

    There are currently intensive global research efforts aimed at increasing and modifying the accumulation of lipids, alcohols, hydrocarbons, polysaccharides, and other energy storage compounds in photosynthetic organisms, yeast, and bacteria through genetic engineering. Many improvements have been realized, including increased lipid and carbohydrate production, improved H2 yields, and the diversion of central metabolic intermediates into fungible biofuels. Photosynthetic microorganisms are attracting considerable interest within these efforts due to their relatively high photosynthetic conversion efficiencies, diverse metabolic capabilities, superior growth rates, and ability to store or secrete energy-rich hydrocarbons. Relative to cyanobacteria, eukaryotic microalgae possess several unique metabolic attributes of relevance to biofuel production, including the accumulation of significant quantities of triacylglycerol; the synthesis of storage starch (amylopectin and amylose), which is similar to that found in higher plants; and the ability to efficiently couple photosynthetic electron transport to H2 production. Although the application of genetic engineering to improve energy production phenotypes in eukaryotic microalgae is in its infancy, significant advances in the development of genetic manipulation tools have recently been achieved with microalgal model systems and are being used to manipulate central carbon metabolism in these organisms. It is likely that many of these advances can be extended to industrially relevant organisms. This review is focused on potential avenues of genetic engineering that may be undertaken in order to improve microalgae as a biofuel platform for the production of biohydrogen, starch-derived alcohols, diesel fuel surrogates, and/or alkanes. PMID:20139239

  7. Technical advances to genetically engineering human embryonic stem cells.

    PubMed

    Maury, Julien Jean Pierre; Choo, Andre Boon-Hwa; Chan, Ken Kwok-Keung

    2011-07-01

    Human embryonic stem cells (hESC) are important to basic scientific research as an in vitro model system for the study of human development and to clinical research as an invaluable cell source for regenerative medicine. The ability to genetically engineer hESC is a critical resource as it facilitates many fundamental studies to understand gene regulation and cell development. These techniques include (1) unidirectional or reversible; (2) non-, pseudo- or completely site-specific; and (3) endogenous and/or pre-engineered DNA sequences modification; where each has its own strengths and limitations. This article reviews the various methodologies to genetically engineer hESC to achieve a stable gene insertion or deletion. We discuss the existing challenges of the well-established methodologies (lentivirus and Cre/loxP system), and further examine recent advances in this field, such as the latest genetic modifying tools (phiC31 integrase, PiggyBac transposase and zinc finger nucleases). We also propose new opportunities for future developments to aid genetic modifications of hESC, and new applications for future basic and therapeutic research in hESC. PMID:21666893

  8. Genetic engineering of algae for enhanced biofuel production.

    PubMed

    Radakovits, Randor; Jinkerson, Robert E; Darzins, Al; Posewitz, Matthew C

    2010-04-01

    There are currently intensive global research efforts aimed at increasing and modifying the accumulation of lipids, alcohols, hydrocarbons, polysaccharides, and other energy storage compounds in photosynthetic organisms, yeast, and bacteria through genetic engineering. Many improvements have been realized, including increased lipid and carbohydrate production, improved H(2) yields, and the diversion of central metabolic intermediates into fungible biofuels. Photosynthetic microorganisms are attracting considerable interest within these efforts due to their relatively high photosynthetic conversion efficiencies, diverse metabolic capabilities, superior growth rates, and ability to store or secrete energy-rich hydrocarbons. Relative to cyanobacteria, eukaryotic microalgae possess several unique metabolic attributes of relevance to biofuel production, including the accumulation of significant quantities of triacylglycerol; the synthesis of storage starch (amylopectin and amylose), which is similar to that found in higher plants; and the ability to efficiently couple photosynthetic electron transport to H(2) production. Although the application of genetic engineering to improve energy production phenotypes in eukaryotic microalgae is in its infancy, significant advances in the development of genetic manipulation tools have recently been achieved with microalgal model systems and are being used to manipulate central carbon metabolism in these organisms. It is likely that many of these advances can be extended to industrially relevant organisms. This review is focused on potential avenues of genetic engineering that may be undertaken in order to improve microalgae as a biofuel platform for the production of biohydrogen, starch-derived alcohols, diesel fuel surrogates, and/or alkanes. PMID:20139239

  9. Enhanced energy transport in genetically engineered excitonic networks.

    PubMed

    Park, Heechul; Heldman, Nimrod; Rebentrost, Patrick; Abbondanza, Luigi; Iagatti, Alessandro; Alessi, Andrea; Patrizi, Barbara; Salvalaggio, Mario; Bussotti, Laura; Mohseni, Masoud; Caruso, Filippo; Johnsen, Hannah C; Fusco, Roberto; Foggi, Paolo; Scudo, Petra F; Lloyd, Seth; Belcher, Angela M

    2016-02-01

    One of the challenges for achieving efficient exciton transport in solar energy conversion systems is precise structural control of the light-harvesting building blocks. Here, we create a tunable material consisting of a connected chromophore network on an ordered biological virus template. Using genetic engineering, we establish a link between the inter-chromophoric distances and emerging transport properties. The combination of spectroscopy measurements and dynamic modelling enables us to elucidate quantum coherent and classical incoherent energy transport at room temperature. Through genetic modifications, we obtain a significant enhancement of exciton diffusion length of about 68% in an intermediate quantum-classical regime. PMID:26461447

  10. The ethics of using genetic engineering for sex selection.

    PubMed

    Liao, S Matthew

    2005-02-01

    It is quite likely that parents will soon be able to use genetic engineering to select the sex of their child by directly manipulating the sex of an embryo. Some might think that this method would be a more ethical method of sex selection than present technologies such as preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) because, unlike PGD, it does not need to create and destroy "wrong gendered" embryos. This paper argues that those who object to present technologies on the grounds that the embryo is a person are unlikely to be persuaded by this proposal, though for different reasons. PMID:15681683

  11. Enhanced energy transport in genetically engineered excitonic networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, Heechul; Heldman, Nimrod; Rebentrost, Patrick; Abbondanza, Luigi; Iagatti, Alessandro; Alessi, Andrea; Patrizi, Barbara; Salvalaggio, Mario; Bussotti, Laura; Mohseni, Masoud; Caruso, Filippo; Johnsen, Hannah C.; Fusco, Roberto; Foggi, Paolo; Scudo, Petra F.; Lloyd, Seth; Belcher, Angela M.

    2016-02-01

    One of the challenges for achieving efficient exciton transport in solar energy conversion systems is precise structural control of the light-harvesting building blocks. Here, we create a tunable material consisting of a connected chromophore network on an ordered biological virus template. Using genetic engineering, we establish a link between the inter-chromophoric distances and emerging transport properties. The combination of spectroscopy measurements and dynamic modelling enables us to elucidate quantum coherent and classical incoherent energy transport at room temperature. Through genetic modifications, we obtain a significant enhancement of exciton diffusion length of about 68% in an intermediate quantum-classical regime.

  12. Inverse metabolic engineering: A strategy for directed genetic engineering of useful phenotypes

    SciTech Connect

    Bailey, J.E.; Sburlati, A.; Hatzimanikatis, V.; Lee, K.; Renner, W.A.; Tsai, P.S.

    1996-10-05

    The classical method of metabolic engineering, identifying a rate-determining step in a pathway and alleviating the bottleneck by enzyme overexpression, has motivated much research but has enjoyed only limited practical success. Intervention of other limiting steps, of counter-balancing regulation, and of unknown coupled pathways often confounds this direct approach. Here the concept of inverse metabolic engineering is codified and its application is illustrated with several examples. Inverse metabolic engineering means the elucidation of a metabolic engineering strategy by: first, identifying, constructing, or calculating a desired phenotype; second, determining the genetic or the particular environmental factors conferring that phenotype; and third, endowing that phenotype on another strain or organism by directed genetic or environmental manipulation. This paradigm has been successfully applied in several contexts, including elimination of growth factor requirements in mammalian cell culture and increasing the energetic efficiency of microaerobic bacterial respiration.

  13. Genetic engineering of terpenoid metabolism attracts bodyguards to Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Kappers, Iris F; Aharoni, Asaph; van Herpen, Teun W J M; Luckerhoff, Ludo L P; Dicke, Marcel; Bouwmeester, Harro J

    2005-09-23

    Herbivore-damaged plants release complex mixtures of volatiles that attract natural enemies of the herbivore. To study the relevance of individual components of these mixtures for predator attraction, we manipulated herbivory-induced volatiles through genetic engineering. Metabolic engineering of terpenoids, which dominate the composition of many induced plant volatile bouquets, holds particular promise. By switching the subcellular localization of the introduced sesquiterpene synthase to the mitochondria, we obtained transgenic Arabidopsis thaliana plants emitting two new isoprenoids. These altered plants attracted carnivorous predatory mites (Phytoseiulus persimilis) that aid the plants' defense mechanisms. PMID:16179482

  14. Genetic engineering possibilities for CELSS: A bibliography and summary of techniques

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, E. J.

    1982-01-01

    A bibliography of the most useful techniques employed in genetic engineering of higher plants, bacteria associated with plants, and plant cell cultures is provided. A resume of state-of-the-art genetic engineering of plants and bacteria is presented. The potential application of plant bacterial genetic engineering to CELSS (Controlled Ecological Life Support System) program and future research needs are discussed.

  15. Genetic Polymorphism and Evolution in Parthenogenetic Animals. I. Polyploid Curculionidae

    PubMed Central

    Suomalainen, Esko; Saura, Anssi

    1973-01-01

    The genetic variability at enzyme loci in different triploid and tetraploid parthenogenetic weevil populations has been elucidated by starch gel electrophoresis. The overall genotype of individual weevils belonging to different populations has been determined for over 25 loci. The results are compared with those obtained for diploid bisexual races of either the same or closely related species. The variation within a parthenogenetic population differs from that in diploid, sexually reproducing populations, i.e. the allele frequencies are not in a Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium. The results indicate that apomictic parthenogenetic populations can differentiate genetically. The genotypes within a population resemble each other more than genotypes belonging to different populations. It is evident that evolution still continueseven if slowed downin parthenogenetic weevils. A comparison between the allele relationships in geographically isolated polyploid parthenogenetic populations and related diploid bisexual forms does not support the hypothetical hybrid origin of parthenogenesis and polyploidy in weevils. Parthenogenesis within a parthenogenetic weevil species is evidently monophyletic. PMID:17248626

  16. The Animal Genetic Resource Information Network (AnimalGRIN) Database: A Database Design & Implementation Case

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Irwin, Gretchen; Wessel, Lark; Blackman, Harvey

    2012-01-01

    This case describes a database redesign project for the United States Department of Agriculture's National Animal Germplasm Program (NAGP). The case provides a valuable context for teaching and practicing database analysis, design, and implementation skills, and can be used as the basis for a semester-long team project. The case demonstrates the…

  17. The Animal Genetic Resource Information Network (AnimalGRIN) Database: A Database Design & Implementation Case

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Irwin, Gretchen; Wessel, Lark; Blackman, Harvey

    2012-01-01

    This case describes a database redesign project for the United States Department of Agriculture's National Animal Germplasm Program (NAGP). The case provides a valuable context for teaching and practicing database analysis, design, and implementation skills, and can be used as the basis for a semester-long team project. The case demonstrates the

  18. Cryoconservation of animal genetic resources. Animal Production and Health Guidelines No. 12

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Livestock agriculture is in a period of tumultuous change and upheaval. General economic development, and population growth and mobility, have increased demand for livestock products, but have also placed pressures on the sustainability of rural environments and animal production systems. Livestock ...

  19. The animal genetic resource information network (AnimalGRIN) database: A database design and implementation case

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This manuscript presents a case study that is based on an actual project for the United States Department of Agricultures National Animal Germplasm Program (NAGP). The NAGP collects, preserves, and documents germplasm from various breeds of livestock in the United States, in order to preserve and e...

  20. Targeted drug delivery using genetically engineered diatom biosilica.

    PubMed

    Delalat, Bahman; Sheppard, Vonda C; Rasi Ghaemi, Soraya; Rao, Shasha; Prestidge, Clive A; McPhee, Gordon; Rogers, Mary-Louise; Donoghue, Jacqueline F; Pillay, Vinochani; Johns, Terrance G; Krger, Nils; Voelcker, Nicolas H

    2015-01-01

    The ability to selectively kill cancerous cell populations while leaving healthy cells unaffected is a key goal in anticancer therapeutics. The use of nanoporous silica-based materials as drug-delivery vehicles has recently proven successful, yet production of these materials requires costly and toxic chemicals. Here we use diatom microalgae-derived nanoporous biosilica to deliver chemotherapeutic drugs to cancer cells. The diatom Thalassiosira pseudonana is genetically engineered to display an IgG-binding domain of protein G on the biosilica surface, enabling attachment of cell-targeting antibodies. Neuroblastoma and B-lymphoma cells are selectively targeted and killed by biosilica displaying specific antibodies sorbed with drug-loaded nanoparticles. Treatment with the same biosilica leads to tumour growth regression in a subcutaneous mouse xenograft model of neuroblastoma. These data indicate that genetically engineered biosilica frustules may be used as versatile 'backpacks' for the targeted delivery of poorly water-soluble anticancer drugs to tumour sites. PMID:26556723

  1. Genetically engineered T cells for the treatment of cancer

    PubMed Central

    Essand, M; Loskog, A S I

    2013-01-01

    T-cell immunotherapy is a promising approach to treat disseminated cancer. However, it has been limited by the ability to isolate and expand T cells restricted to tumour-associated antigens. Using ex vivo gene transfer, T cells from patients can be genetically engineered to express a novel T cell receptor or chimeric antigen receptor to specifically recognize a tumour-associated antigen and thereby selectively kill tumour cells. Indeed, genetically engineered T cells have recently been successfully used for cancer treatment in a small number of patients. Here we review the recent progress in the field, and summarize the challenges that lie ahead and the strategies being used to overcome them. PMID:23198862

  2. [Advances in genetic engineering of plant virus resistance].

    PubMed

    Haxim, Yakupjan; Ismayil, Asigul; Wang, Yunjing; Liu, Yule

    2015-06-01

    Plant virus is one of the most economical devastating microorganisms for global agriculture. Although several strategies are useful for controlling viral infection, such as resistant breeds cultivation, chemical bactericides treatment, blocking the infection source, tissue detoxification and field sanitation, viral disease is still a problem in agricultural production. Genetic engineering approach offers various options for introducing virus resistance into crop plants. This paper reviews the current strategies of developing virus resistant transgenic plants. PMID:26672372

  3. Cryopreservation of Mammalian Oocyte for Conservation of Animal Genetics

    PubMed Central

    Prentice, Jennifer R.; Anzar, Muhammad

    2011-01-01

    The preservation of the female portion of livestock genetics has become an international priority; however, in situ conservation strategies are extremely expensive. Therefore, efforts are increasingly focusing on the development of a reliable cryopreservation method for oocytes, in order to establish ova banks. Slow freezing, a common method for cryopreservation of oocytes, causes osmotic shock (solution effect) and intracellular ice crystallization leading to cell damage. Vitrification is an alternative method for cryopreservation in which cells are exposed to a higher concentration of cryoprotectants and frozen with an ultra rapid freezing velocity, resulting in an ice crystal free, solid glass-like structure. Presently, vitrification is a popular method for cryopreservation of embryos. However, vitrification of oocytes is still challenging due to their complex structure and sensitivity to chilling. PMID:20886016

  4. Genetically engineered viral vaccines--prospects for the future.

    PubMed

    Pettersson, R F

    1982-12-01

    Genetic engineering (recombinant DNA technology)--the revolution in molecular biology--has enabled us to isolate any genes from any source in a pure form, and to move them from one cell to another. It has become possible to program bacterial or yeast cells with foreign genes and force the new host to produce commercially valuable proteins (e.g. hormones, enzymes, diagnostic reagents). It is now also possible to produce viral and bacterial antigens in various types of cells. We hope that this will soon enable us to manufacture vaccines cheaply. The production of a foot-and-mouth-disease virus vaccine--the first promising example of a genetically engineered effective vaccine--has recently been reported. Expression of hepatitis B surface antigen, influenza virus haemagglutinin and polio-virus proteins from the cloned genes have also been reported, and many more viral genes have been cloned although not yet expressed in bacteria. Despite the extremely rapid development, there are a number of problems, both technical and immunological, which have to be extensively studied and eventually solved, before we can hope to obtain effective and safe genetically engineered viral vaccines for clinical use. PMID:6763495

  5. Arsenite cocarcinogenesis: an animal model derived from genetic toxicology studies.

    PubMed Central

    Rossman, Toby G; Uddin, Ahmed N; Burns, Fredric J; Bosland, Maarten C

    2002-01-01

    Although epidemiologic evidence shows an association between inorganic arsenic in drinking water and increased risk of skin, lung, and bladder cancers, no animal model for arsenic carcinogenesis has been successful. This lack has hindered mechanistic studies of arsenic carcinogenesis. Previously, we and others found that low concentrations (< or =5 microm) of arsenite (the likely environmental carcinogen), which are not mutagenic, can enhance the mutagenicity of other agents, including ultraviolet radiation (UVR) and alkylating agents. This enhancing effect appears to result from inhibition of DNA repair by arsenite, but not via inhibition of DNA repair enzymes. Rather, low concentrations of arsenite disrupt p53 function and upregulate cyclin D1. Failure to find an animal model for arsenic carcinogenesis might be because arsenite is not a carcinogen per se but acts as an enhancing agent (cocarcinogen) with a genotoxic partner. We tested this hypothesis with solar UVR in hairless but immunocompetent Skh1 mice. Mice were given 10 mg/L sodium arsenite in drinking water (or not) and irradiated with 1.7 KJ/m(2) solar UVR 3 times weekly. As expected, no tumors appeared in any organs in control mice or in mice given arsenite alone. After 26 weeks irradiated mice given arsenite had a 2.4-fold increase in skin tumor yield compared with mice given UVR alone. The tumors were mostly squamous cell carcinomas, and those occurring in mice given UVR plus arsenite were much larger and more invasive. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that arsenic acts as a cocarcinogen with a second (genotoxic) agent by inhibiting DNA repair and/or enhancing positive growth signaling. Skin cancers in populations drinking water containing arsenic may be caused by the enhancement by arsenic compounds of carcinogenesis induced by UVR (or other environmental agents). It is possible that lung and bladder cancers associated with arsenic in drinking water may also require a carcinogenic partner. PMID:12426125

  6. Go3R - semantic Internet search engine for alternative methods to animal testing.

    PubMed

    Sauer, Ursula G; Wchter, Thomas; Grune, Barbara; Doms, Andreas; Alvers, Michael R; Spielmann, Horst; Schroeder, Michael

    2009-01-01

    Consideration and incorporation of all available scientific information is an important part of the planning of any scientific project. As regards research with sentient animals, EU Directive 86/609/EEC for the protection of laboratory animals requires scientists to consider whether any planned animal experiment can be substituted by other scientifically satisfactory methods not entailing the use of animals or entailing less animals or less animal suffering, before performing the experiment. Thus, collection of relevant information is indispensable in order to meet this legal obligation. However, no standard procedures or services exist to provide convenient access to the information required to reliably determine whether it is possible to replace, reduce or refine a planned animal experiment in accordance with the 3Rs principle. The search engine Go3R, which is available free of charge under http://Go3R.org, runs up to become such a standard service. Go3R is the world-wide first search engine on alternative methods building on new semantic technologies that use an expert-knowledge based ontology to identify relevant documents. Due to Go3R's concept and design, the search engine can be used without lengthy instructions. It enables all those involved in the planning, authorisation and performance of animal experiments to determine the availability of non-animal methodologies in a fast, comprehensive and transparent manner. Thereby, Go3R strives to significantly contribute to the avoidance and replacement of animal experiments. PMID:19326030

  7. Enhanced photo-bioelectrochemical energy conversion by genetically engineered cyanobacteria.

    PubMed

    Sekar, Narendran; Jain, Rachit; Yan, Yajun; Ramasamy, Ramaraja P

    2016-03-01

    Photosynthetic energy conversion using natural systems is increasingly being investigated in the recent years. Photosynthetic microorganisms, such as cyanobacteria, exhibit light-dependent electrogenic characteristics in photo-bioelectrochemical cells (PBEC) that generate substantial photocurrents, yet the current densities are lower than their photovoltaic counterparts. Recently, we demonstrated that a cyanobacterium named Nostoc sp. employed in PBEC could generate up to 35 mW m(-2) even in a non-engineered PBEC. With the insights obtained from our previous research, a novel and successful attempt has been made in the current study to genetically engineer the cyanobacteria to further enhance its extracellular electron transfer. The cyanobacterium Synechococcus elongatus PCC 7942 was genetically engineered to express a non-native redox protein called outer membrane cytochrome S (OmcS). OmcS is predominantly responsible for metal reducing abilities of exoelectrogens such as Geobacter sp. The engineered S. elongatus exhibited higher extracellular electron transfer ability resulting in approximately ninefold higher photocurrent generation on the anode of a PBEC than the corresponding wild-type cyanobacterium. This work highlights the scope for enhancing photocurrent generation in cyanobacteria, thereby benefiting faster advancement of the photosynthetic microbial fuel cell technology. Biotechnol. Bioeng. 2016;113: 675-679. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26348367

  8. The potential of tissue engineering for developing alternatives to animal experiments: a systematic review.

    PubMed

    de Vries, Rob B M; Leenaars, Marlies; Tra, Joppe; Huijbregtse, Robbertjan; Bongers, Erik; Jansen, John A; Gordijn, Bert; Ritskes-Hoitinga, Merel

    2015-07-01

    An underexposed ethical issue raised by tissue engineering is the use of laboratory animals in tissue engineering research. Even though this research results in suffering and loss of life in animals, tissue engineering also has great potential for the development of alternatives to animal experiments. With the objective of promoting a joint effort of tissue engineers and alternative experts to fully realise this potential, this study provides the first comprehensive overview of the possibilities of using tissue-engineered constructs as a replacement of laboratory animals. Through searches in two large biomedical databases (PubMed, Embase) and several specialised 3R databases, 244 relevant primary scientific articles, published between 1991 and 2011, were identified. By far most articles reviewed related to the use of tissue-engineered skin/epidermis for toxicological applications such as testing for skin irritation. This review article demonstrates, however, that the potential for the development of alternatives also extends to other tissues such as other epithelia and the liver, as well as to other fields of application such as drug screening and basic physiology. This review discusses which impediments need to be overcome to maximise the contributions that the field of tissue engineering can make, through the development of alternative methods, to the reduction of the use and suffering of laboratory animals. PMID:23554402

  9. Neuropathology and Animal Models of Autism: Genetic and Environmental Factors

    PubMed Central

    Gadad, Bharathi S.; Young, Keith A.; German, Dwight C.

    2013-01-01

    Autism is a heterogeneous behaviorally defined neurodevelopmental disorder. It is defined by the presence of marked social deficits, specific language abnormalities, and stereotyped repetitive patterns of behavior. Because of the variability in the behavioral phenotype of the disorder among patients, the term autism spectrum disorder has been established. In the first part of this review, we provide an overview of neuropathological findings from studies of autism postmortem brains and identify the cerebellum as one of the key brain regions that can play a role in the autism phenotype. We review research findings that indicate possible links between the environment and autism including the role of mercury and immune-related factors. Because both genes and environment can alter the structure of the developing brain in different ways, it is not surprising that there is heterogeneity in the behavioral and neuropathological phenotypes of autism spectrum disorders. Finally, we describe animal models of autism that occur following insertion of different autism-related genes and exposure to environmental factors, highlighting those models which exhibit both autism-like behavior and neuropathology. PMID:24151553

  10. Genetics of hypertension: From experimental animals to humans

    PubMed Central

    Delles, Christian; McBride, Martin W.; Graham, Delyth; Padmanabhan, Sandosh; Dominiczak, Anna F.

    2010-01-01

    Essential hypertension affects 20 to 30% of the population worldwide and contributes significantly to cardiovascular mortality and morbidity. Heridability of blood pressure is around 15 to 40% but there are also substantial environmental factors affecting blood pressure variability. It is assumed that blood pressure is under the control of a large number of genes each of which has only relatively mild effects. It has therefore been difficult to discover the genes that contribute to blood pressure variation using traditional approaches including candidate gene studies and linkage studies. Animal models of hypertension, particularly in the rat, have led to the discovery of quantitative trait loci harbouring one or several hypertension related genes, but translation of these findings into human essential hypertension remains challenging. Recent development of genotyping technology made large scale genome-wide association studies possible. This approach and the study of monogenic forms of hypertension has led to the discovery of novel and robust candidate genes for human essential hypertension, many of which require functional analysis in experimental models. PMID:20035862

  11. The use of whole food animal studies in the safety assessment of genetically modified crops: limitations and recommendations.

    PubMed

    Bartholomaeus, Andrew; Parrott, Wayne; Bondy, Genevieve; Walker, Kate

    2013-11-01

    There is disagreement internationally across major regulatory jurisdictions on the relevance and utility of whole food (WF) toxicity studies on GM crops, with no harmonization of data or regulatory requirements. The scientific value, and therefore animal ethics, of WF studies on GM crops is a matter addressable from the wealth of data available on commercialized GM crops and WF studies on irradiated foods. We reviewed available GM crop WF studies and considered the extent to which they add to the information from agronomic and compositional analyses. No WF toxicity study was identified that convincingly demonstrated toxicological concern or that called into question the adequacy, sufficiency, and reliability of safety assessments based on crop molecular characterization, transgene source, agronomic characteristics, and/or compositional analysis of the GM crop and its near-isogenic line. Predictions of safety based on crop genetics and compositional analyses have provided complete concordance with the results of well-conducted animal testing. However, this concordance is primarily due to the improbability of de novo generation of toxic substances in crop plants using genetic engineering practices and due to the weakness of WF toxicity studies in general. Thus, based on the comparative robustness and reliability of compositional and agronomic considerations and on the absence of any scientific basis for a significant potential for de novo generation of toxicologically significant compositional alterations as a sole result of transgene insertion, the conclusion of this review is that WF animal toxicity studies are unnecessary and scientifically unjustifiable. PMID:24164514

  12. The use of whole food animal studies in the safety assessment of genetically modified crops: Limitations and recommendations

    PubMed Central

    Bartholomaeus, Andrew; Parrott, Wayne; Bondy, Genevieve

    2013-01-01

    There is disagreement internationally across major regulatory jurisdictions on the relevance and utility of whole food (WF) toxicity studies on GM crops, with no harmonization of data or regulatory requirements. The scientific value, and therefore animal ethics, of WF studies on GM crops is a matter addressable from the wealth of data available on commercialized GM crops and WF studies on irradiated foods. We reviewed available GM crop WF studies and considered the extent to which they add to the information from agronomic and compositional analyses. No WF toxicity study was identified that convincingly demonstrated toxicological concern or that called into question the adequacy, sufficiency, and reliability of safety assessments based on crop molecular characterization, transgene source, agronomic characteristics, and/or compositional analysis of the GM crop and its near-isogenic line. Predictions of safety based on crop genetics and compositional analyses have provided complete concordance with the results of well-conducted animal testing. However, this concordance is primarily due to the improbability of de novo generation of toxic substances in crop plants using genetic engineering practices and due to the weakness of WF toxicity studies in general. Thus, based on the comparative robustness and reliability of compositional and agronomic considerations and on the absence of any scientific basis for a significant potential for de novo generation of toxicologically significant compositional alterations as a sole result of transgene insertion, the conclusion of this review is that WF animal toxicity studies are unnecessary and scientifically unjustifiable. PMID:24164514

  13. The delicate balance in genetically engineering live vaccines

    PubMed Central

    Galen, James E.; Curtiss, Roy

    2014-01-01

    Contemporary vaccine development relies less on empirical methods of vaccine construction, and now employs a powerful array of precise engineering strategies to construct immunogenic live vaccines. In this review, we will survey various engineering techniques used to create attenuated vaccines, with an emphasis on recent advances and insights. We will further explore the adaptation of attenuated strains to create multivalent vaccine platforms for immunization against multiple unrelated pathogens. These carrier vaccines are engineered to deliver sufficient levels of protective antigens to appropriate lymphoid inductive sites to elicit both carrier-specific and foreign antigen-specific immunity. Although many of these technologies were originally developed for use in Salmonella vaccines, application of the essential logic of these approaches will be extended to development of other enteric vaccines where possible. A central theme driving our discussion will stress that the ultimate success of an engineered vaccine rests on achieving the proper balance between attenuation and immunogenicity. Achieving this balance will avoid over-activation of inflammatory responses, which results in unacceptable reactogenicity, but will retain sufficient metabolic fitness to enable the live vaccine to reach deep tissue inductive sites and trigger protective immunity. The breadth of examples presented herein will clearly demonstrate that genetic engineering offers the potential for rapidly propelling vaccine development forward into novel applications and therapies which will significantly expand the role of vaccines in public health. PMID:24370705

  14. Regulatory steps associated with use of value-added recombinant proteins and peptides screened in high-throughput for expression in genetically engineered starch and cellulosic fuel ethanol yeast strains

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Recombinant proteins expressed in animals have been a public concern as a perceived risk to the consumer. Animals are currently being treated with genetically engineered biologicals, such as growth hormone, or fed genetically modified plants. Similarly, various commercially-valuable proteins or pe...

  15. ICLAS Working Group on Harmonization: international guidance concerning the production care and use of genetically-altered animals.

    PubMed

    Rose, M; Everitt, J; Hedrich, H; Schofield, J; Dennis, M; Scott, E; Griffin, G

    2013-07-01

    Replacement, Reduction and Refinement, the Three Rs of Russell & Burch, are accepted worldwide as fundamental to the ethics of animal experimentation. The production, care and use of genetically-altered animals can pose particular challenges to the implementation of the Three Rs,1 necessitating additional considerations by those responsible for overseeing the ethical use and appropriate care of animals involved in science. The International Council for Laboratory Animal Science brings representatives of the international laboratory animal science community together to recommend acceptance of guidance documents.The harmonization of guidance concerning genetically-altered animals was seen as a priority because of the increasing globalization of research involving these animals. PMID:23563121

  16. Universal genetic assay for engineering extracellular protein expression.

    PubMed

    Haitjema, Charles H; Boock, Jason T; Natarajan, Aravind; Dominguez, Miguel A; Gardner, Jeffrey G; Keating, David H; Withers, Sydnor T; DeLisa, Matthew P

    2014-02-21

    A variety of strategies now exist for the extracellular expression of recombinant proteins using laboratory strains of Escherichia coli . However, secreted proteins often accumulate in the culture medium at levels that are too low to be practically useful for most synthetic biology and metabolic engineering applications. The situation is compounded by the lack of generalized screening tools for optimizing the secretion process. To address this challenge, we developed a genetic approach for studying and engineering protein-secretion pathways in E. coli . Using the YebF pathway as a model, we demonstrate that direct fluorescent labeling of tetracysteine-motif-tagged secretory proteins with the biarsenical compound FlAsH is possible in situ without the need to recover the cell-free supernatant. High-throughput screening of a bacterial strain library yielded superior YebF expression hosts capable of secreting higher titers of YebF and YebF-fusion proteins into the culture medium. We also show that the method can be easily extended to other secretory pathways, including type II and type III secretion, directly in E. coli . Thus, our FlAsH-tetracysteine-based genetic assay provides a convenient, high-throughput tool that can be applied generally to diverse secretory pathways. This platform should help to shed light on poorly understood aspects of these processes as well as to further assist in the construction of engineered E. coli strains for efficient secretory-protein production. PMID:24200127

  17. Directed evolution of motor neurons from genetically engineered neural precursors.

    PubMed

    Bohl, Delphine; Liu, Song; Blanchard, Stphane; Hocquemiller, Michal; Haase, Georg; Heard, Jean-Michel

    2008-10-01

    Stem cell-based therapies hold therapeutic promise for degenerative motor neuron diseases, such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and for spinal cord injury. Fetal neural progenitors present less risk of tumor formation than embryonic stem cells but inefficiently differentiate into motor neurons, in line with their low expression of motor neuron-specific transcription factors and poor response to soluble external factors. To overcome this limitation, we genetically engineered fetal rat spinal cord neurospheres to express the transcription factors HB9, Nkx6.1, and Neurogenin2. Enforced expression of the three factors rendered neural precursors responsive to Sonic hedgehog and retinoic acid and directed their differentiation into cholinergic motor neurons that projected axons and formed contacts with cocultured myotubes. When transplanted in the injured adult rat spinal cord, a model of acute motor neuron degeneration, the engineered precursors transiently proliferated, colonized the ventral horn, expressed motor neuron-specific differentiation markers, and projected cholinergic axons in the ventral root. We conclude that genetic engineering can drive the differentiation of fetal neural precursors into motor neurons that efficiently engraft in the spinal cord. The strategy thus holds promise for cell replacement in motor neuron and related diseases. Disclosure of potential conflicts of interest is found at the end of this article. PMID:18635866

  18. Genetic Engineering of Mesenchymal Stem Cells for Regenerative Medicine.

    PubMed

    Nowakowski, Adam; Walczak, Piotr; Janowski, Miroslaw; Lukomska, Barbara

    2015-10-01

    Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), which can be obtained from various organs and easily propagated in vitro, are one of the most extensively used types of stem cells and have been shown to be efficacious in a broad set of diseases. The unique and highly desirable properties of MSCs include high migratory capacities toward injured areas, immunomodulatory features, and the natural ability to differentiate into connective tissue phenotypes. These phenotypes include bone and cartilage, and these properties predispose MSCs to be therapeutically useful. In addition, MSCs elicit their therapeutic effects by paracrine actions, in which the metabolism of target tissues is modulated. Genetic engineering methods can greatly amplify these properties and broaden the therapeutic capabilities of MSCs, including transdifferentiation toward diverse cell lineages. However, cell engineering can also affect safety and increase the cost of therapy based on MSCs; thus, the advantages and disadvantages of these procedures should be discussed. In this review, the latest applications of genetic engineering methods for MSCs with regenerative medicine purposes are presented. PMID:26140302

  19. [Gentecnically engineered V79 cell lines in combination with analytical-chemical procedures for replacing and refining animal experimentations

    PubMed

    Doehmer, Johannes; Jacob, Jürgen

    1994-01-01

    Since 1986 V79 Chinese hamster cells are being genetically engineered for rat and human enzymes for studies on metabolism dependent effects in toxicology and pharmacology under defined conditions. The metabolic activation of potentially harmful chemicals is of interest in toxicology, because metabolites may have their own toxic potency. Anabolic and catabolic pathways of drugs are of interest in pharmacology, because metabolism has a decisive impact on the efficacy of drugs. As an example for the usefulness of V79 cells genetically engineered for metabolic competence, and their advantage over animal experimentation, metabolic activation of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons has been studied. Comparative studies using V79 cells expressing rat and human enzymes revealed striking differences in the metabolite profile, which made evident, that human beings are at more risk than the rat, when exposed to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. This suggests at the same time, that results obtained from animal experimentation are to be treated with caution, if they form the basis for risk assessment. PMID:11178376

  20. The Plant Genetic Engineering Laboratory For Desert Adaptation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kemp, John D.; Phillips, Gregory C.

    1985-11-01

    The Plant Genetic Engineering Laboratory for Desert Adaptation (PGEL) is one of five Centers of Technical Excellence established as a part of the state of New Mexico's Rio Grande Research Corridor (RGRC). The scientific mission of PGEL is to bring innovative advances in plant biotechnology to bear on agricultural productivity in arid and semi-arid regions. Research activities focus on molecular and cellular genetics technology development in model systems, but also include stress physiology investigations and development of desert plant resources. PGEL interacts with the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), a national laboratory participating in the RGRC. PGEL also has an economic development mission, which is being pursued through technology transfer activities to private companies and public agencies.

  1. Animal production and genetic resources in Guinea Bissau: II--Tombali province.

    PubMed

    de Almeida, Andr Martinho; Cardoso, Lus Alfaro

    2008-10-01

    A survey of the animal production systems and genetic resources was conducted in Tombali Province, Guinea Bissau. Animal owners and their families, village chiefs, shepherds and local officials were interviewed. The vast majority of the population is dedicated to very small-scale subsistence farming where animal ownership has an important role in both food supply, ceremonial events and as form of cash reserve. Animal production in the area is characterized by the existence of several ethnic groups: Balanta, Nal, Sosso, Biafada and Fula. Only Balanta raise cattle (N'Dama and West African Shorthorn) and pig (crioulo breed) whereas all ethnic groups own goats (West African Dwarf), chickens and ducks. Sheep are limited to specific areas and ethnic groups. The survey is intended to serve as a basis to possible agricultural and animal production development projects in this area. PMID:18716911

  2. Using Computer Animation and Illustration Activities to Improve High School Students' Achievement in Molecular Genetics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Marbach-Ad, Gili; Rotbain, Yosi; Stavy, Ruth

    2008-01-01

    Our main goal in this study was to determine whether the use of computer animation and illustration activities in high school can contribute to student achievement in molecular genetics. Three comparable groups of eleventh- and twelfth-grade students participated: the control group (116 students) was taught in the traditional lecture format,

  3. Gene banks a mechanism for harnessing animal genetic resources for food security

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Increased productivity for livestock is needed to sustainably meet growing consumer demands. Climate change places another layer of complexity on the raising animal productivity. To meet these challenges a wide variety of genetic resources is needed. But maintaining this variety in-situ can be costl...

  4. Options and legal requirements for national and regional animal genetic resources collections

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The contraction of animal genetic resources on a global scale has motivated countries to establish gene banks as a mechanism to conserve national resources. Gene banks should establish a set of policies that insure they are complying with national laws. The two primary areas of consideration are ho...

  5. Genetically engineered acidophilic heterotrophic bacteria by bacteriophage transduction

    SciTech Connect

    Ward, T.E.; Bruhn, D.F.; Bulmer, D.F.

    1989-05-10

    A bacteriophage capable of infecting acidophilic heterotrophic bacteria and processes for genetically engineering acidophilic bacteria for biomining or sulfur removal from coal are disclosed. The bacteriophage is capable of growth in cells existing at pH at or below 3.0. Lytic forms of the phage introduced into areas experiencing acid drainage kill the bacteria causing such drainage. Lysogenic forms of the phage having genes for selective removal of metallic or nonmetallic elements can be introduced into acidophilic bacteria to effect removal of the desired element from ore or coal. 1 fig., 1 tab.

  6. Genetic-evolution-based optimization methods for engineering design

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rao, S. S.; Pan, T. S.; Dhingra, A. K.; Venkayya, V. B.; Kumar, V.

    1990-01-01

    This paper presents the applicability of a biological model, based on genetic evolution, for engineering design optimization. Algorithms embodying the ideas of reproduction, crossover, and mutation are developed and applied to solve different types of structural optimization problems. Both continuous and discrete variable optimization problems are solved. A two-bay truss for maximum fundamental frequency is considered to demonstrate the continuous variable case. The selection of locations of actuators in an actively controlled structure, for minimum energy dissipation, is considered to illustrate the discrete variable case.

  7. Genetic engineering: Rifkin strikes at corn this time.

    PubMed

    Budiansky, S

    As a result of a threatened suit by Jeremy Rifkin, Stanford University has postponed an experiment involving a test plot of genetically-engineered corn. At issue is an injunction forbidding the Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee of the National Institutes of Health from approving federal funding of experiments entailing the release of recombinant DNA into the environment. Rifkin's legal argument is that an environmnental impact statement must be filed for both commercially- and federally-funded research. It is expected that Rifkin's demand for equal treatment regardless of funding source will be agreed to by NIH. PMID:6588294

  8. Genetic engineering of cytokinins and their application to agriculture.

    PubMed

    Ma, Qing-Hu

    2008-01-01

    Cytokinins are master regulators of plant growth and development. They are involved in the regulation of many important physiological and metabolic processes. Recent progress in cytokinin research at the molecular level, including identification of related genes and cytokinin receptors, plus elucidation of signal transduction, has greatly increased our understanding of cytokinin actions. Although still in its infant stage, molecular breeding of crops with altered cytokinin metabolism, when combined with the transgenic approach, has shown very promising potential for application to agriculture. In this review we briefly introduce recent progress in cytokinin molecular biology, discuss applications of cytokinin genetic engineering to agriculture, and present implications and future research directions. PMID:18855152

  9. Cancer Regression in Patients After Transfer of Genetically Engineered Lymphocytes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morgan, Richard A.; Dudley, Mark E.; Wunderlich, John R.; Hughes, Marybeth S.; Yang, James C.; Sherry, Richard M.; Royal, Richard E.; Topalian, Suzanne L.; Kammula, Udai S.; Restifo, Nicholas P.; Zheng, Zhili; Nahvi, Azam; de Vries, Christiaan R.; Rogers-Freezer, Linda J.; Mavroukakis, Sharon A.; Rosenberg, Steven A.

    2006-10-01

    Through the adoptive transfer of lymphocytes after host immunodepletion, it is possible to mediate objective cancer regression in human patients with metastatic melanoma. However, the generation of tumor-specific T cells in this mode of immunotherapy is often limiting. Here we report the ability to specifically confer tumor recognition by autologous lymphocytes from peripheral blood by using a retrovirus that encodes a T cell receptor. Adoptive transfer of these transduced cells in 15 patients resulted in durable engraftment at levels exceeding 10% of peripheral blood lymphocytes for at least 2 months after the infusion. We observed high sustained levels of circulating, engineered cells at 1 year after infusion in two patients who both demonstrated objective regression of metastatic melanoma lesions. This study suggests the therapeutic potential of genetically engineered cells for the biologic therapy of cancer.

  10. Breakthrough in chloroplast genetic engineering of agronomically important crops

    PubMed Central

    Daniell, Henry; Kumar, Shashi; Dufourmantel, Nathalie

    2012-01-01

    Chloroplast genetic engineering offers several unique advantages, including high-level transgene expression, multi-gene engineering in a single transformation event and transgene containment by maternal inheritance, as well as a lack of gene silencing, position and pleiotropic effects and undesirable foreign DNA. More than 40 transgenes have been stably integrated and expressed using the tobacco chloroplast genome to confer desired agronomic traits or express high levels of vaccine antigens and biopharmaceuticals. Despite such significant progress, this technology has not been extended to major crops. However, highly efficient soybean, carrot and cotton plastid transformation has recently been accomplished through somatic embryogenesis using species-specific chloroplast vectors. This review focuses on recent exciting developments in this field and offers directions for further research and development. PMID:15866001

  11. Ranking of Nellore animals in cattle championships: genetic parameters and correlations with production traits.

    PubMed

    Simielli Filho, E A; Mercadante, M E Z; Ii Vasconcelos Silva, J A; Josahkian, L A

    2014-01-01

    Records of 17,141 Nellore cattle participating in cattle championships, born from 1994-2009, were used to estimate genetic parameters between animal rank in cattle championships, evaluated from weaning to 36 months of age as repeated traits, and growth, fertility, and carcass traits, evaluated at 365 days of age as single traits. Two traits were defined for animal rank in cattle championships: value 1 was attributed to animals ranked from 1st to 3rd place within the age category, and value 0 was assigned to the remaining animals (TOP3). Value 1 was attributed to animals ranked from 1st to 5th place within the age category and value 0 was assigned to the remaining animals (TOP5). The (co)variance components were estimated based on Bayesian inference under a 2-trait threshold-linear animal model. The posterior means of heritability estimated for TOP3 and TOP5 were 0.182 ± 0.010 and 0.260 ± 0.012, respectively, and their repeatabilities were 0.341 ± 0.007 and 0.400 ± 0.007, respectively. High-ranking animals generally presented higher breeding values for body weight, height, body length, and heart girth. The phenotypic correlations indicate that judges of cattle championships primarily rank animals based on weight and heart girth. PMID:25117330

  12. ISFG: recommendations regarding the use of non-human (animal) DNA in forensic genetic investigations.

    PubMed

    Linacre, A; Gusmão, L; Hecht, W; Hellmann, A P; Mayr, W R; Parson, W; Prinz, M; Schneider, P M; Morling, N

    2011-11-01

    The use of non-human DNA typing in forensic science investigations, and specifically that from animal DNA, is ever increasing. The term animal DNA in this document refers to animal species encountered in a forensic science examination but does not include human DNA. Non-human DNA may either be: the trade and possession of a species, or products derived from a species, which is contrary to legislation; as evidence where the crime is against a person or property; instances of animal cruelty; or where the animal is the offender. The first instance is addressed by determining the species present, and the other scenarios can often be addressed by assigning a DNA sample to a particular individual organism. Currently there is little standardization of methodologies used in the forensic analysis of animal DNA or in reporting styles. The recommendations in this document relate specifically to animal DNA that is integral to a forensic science investigation and are not relevant to the breeding of animals for commercial purposes. This DNA commission was formed out of discussions at the International Society for Forensic Genetics 23rd Congress in Buenos Aires to outline recommendations on the use of non-human DNA in a forensic science investigation. Due to the scope of non-human DNA typing that is possible, the remit of this commission is confined to animal DNA typing only. PMID:21106449

  13. Panel 4: Recent Advances in Otitis Media in Molecular Biology, Biochemistry, Genetics, and Animal Models

    PubMed Central

    Li, Jian-Dong; Hermansson, Ann; Ryan, Allen F.; Bakaletz, Lauren O.; Brown, Steve D.; Cheeseman, Michael T.; Juhn, Steven K.; Jung, Timothy T. K.; Lim, David J.; Lim, Jae Hyang; Lin, Jizhen; Moon, Sung-Kyun; Post, J. Christopher

    2014-01-01

    Background Otitis media (OM) is the most common childhood bacterial infection and also the leading cause of conductive hearing loss in children. Currently, there is an urgent need for developing novel therapeutic agents for treating OM based on full understanding of molecular pathogenesis in the areas of molecular biology, biochemistry, genetics, and animal model studies in OM. Objective To provide a state-of-the-art review concerning recent advances in OM in the areas of molecular biology, biochemistry, genetics, and animal model studies and to discuss the future directions of OM studies in these areas. Data Sources and Review Methods A structured search of the current literature (since June 2007). The authors searched PubMed for published literature in the areas of molecular biology, biochemistry, genetics, and animal model studies in OM. Results Over the past 4 years, significant progress has been made in the areas of molecular biology, biochemistry, genetics, and animal model studies in OM. These studies brought new insights into our understanding of the molecular and biochemical mechanisms underlying the molecular pathogenesis of OM and helped identify novel therapeutic targets for OM. Conclusions and Implications for Practice Our understanding of the molecular pathogenesis of OM has been significantly advanced, particularly in the areas of inflammation, innate immunity, mucus overproduction, mucosal hyperplasia, middle ear and inner ear interaction, genetics, genome sequencing, and animal model studies. Although these studies are still in their experimental stages, they help identify new potential therapeutic targets. Future preclinical and clinical studies will help to translate these exciting experimental research findings into clinical applications. PMID:23536532

  14. The use of genetic engineering techniques to improve the lipid composition in meat, milk and fish products: a review.

    PubMed

    ?wi?tkiewicz, S; ?wi?tkiewicz, M; Arczewska-W?osek, A; Jzefiak, D

    2015-04-01

    The health-promoting properties of dietary long-chain n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (n-3 LCPUFAs) for humans are well-known. Products of animal-origin enriched with n-3 LCPUFAs can be a good example of functional food, that is food that besides traditionally understood nutritional value may have a beneficial influence on the metabolism and health of consumers, thus reducing the risk of various lifestyle diseases such as atherosclerosis and coronary artery disease. The traditional method of enriching meat, milk or eggs with n-3 LCPUFA is the manipulation of the composition of animal diets. Huge progress in the development of genetic engineering techniques, for example transgenesis, has enabled the generation of many kinds of genetically modified animals. In recent years, one of the aims of animal transgenesis has been the modification of the lipid composition of meat and milk in order to improve the dietetic value of animal-origin products. This article reviews and discusses the data in the literature concerning studies where techniques of genetic engineering were used to create animal-origin products modified to contain health-promoting lipids. These studies are still at the laboratory stage, but their results have demonstrated that the transgenesis of pigs, cows, goats and fishes can be used in the future as efficient methods of production of healthy animal-origin food of high dietetic value. However, due to high costs and a low level of public acceptance, the introduction of this technology to commercial animal production and markets seems to be a distant prospect. PMID:25500170

  15. Genetic engineering and chemical conjugation of potato virus X.

    PubMed

    Lee, Karin L; Uhde-Holzem, Kerstin; Fischer, Rainer; Commandeur, Ulrich; Steinmetz, Nicole F

    2014-01-01

    Here we report the genetic engineering and chemical modification of potato virus X (PVX) for the presentation of various peptides, proteins, and fluorescent dyes, or other chemical modifiers. Three different ways of genetic engineering are described and by these means, peptides are successfully expressed not only when the foot and mouth disease virus (FMDV) 2A sequence or a flexible glycine-serine linker is included, but also when the peptide is fused directly to the PVX coat protein. When larger proteins or unfavorable peptide sequences are presented, a partial fusion via the FMDV 2A sequence is preferable. When these PVX chimeras retain the ability to assemble into viral particles and are thus able to infect plants systemically, they can be utilized to inoculate susceptible plants for isolation of sufficient amounts of virus particles for subsequent chemical modification. Chemical modification is required for the display of nonbiological ligands such as fluorophores, polymers, and small drug compounds. We present three methods of chemical bioconjugation. For direct conjugation of small chemical modifiers to solvent exposed lysines, N-hydroxysuccinimide chemistry can be applied. Bio-orthogonal reactions such as copper-catalyzed azide-alkyne cycloaddition or hydrazone ligation are alternatives to achieve more efficient conjugation (e.g., when working with high molecular weight or insoluble ligands). Furthermore, hydrazone ligation offers an attractive route for the introduction of pH-cleavable cargos (e.g., therapeutic molecules). PMID:24243237

  16. [New vaccines in the age of genetic engineering].

    PubMed

    Nolte, F

    1993-10-01

    The era of genetic engineering is merely 20 years of age, yet has already borne completely new perspectives for vaccine development. Important insights are gained by elucidating the genetic information of a disease-causing microorganism and its pathogenic and attenuated variants. Site-directed mutagenesis can then be employed to specifically alter the genetic information in a variety of ways. Upon transfer of the corresponding gene to pro- or eucaryotic cells, large quantities of microbial components can be produced. A new generation of such subunit vaccines is already undergoing clinical testing. Recently, hybrid vaccines have been constructed, which utilize highly successful traditional live vaccines such as polio- and vaccinia-virus or the Tbc-bacterium as carriers for components of other microorganisms. We should bear in mind that the same new technologies can be abused for the construction of potentially dangerous biological weapons. The scientific community bears the responsibility to prevent such abuse and to lobby for an easy access to the new vaccines by the world's poorest inhabitants. PMID:8253480

  17. POTENTIAL FOR TRANSFER AND ESTABLISHMENT OF ENGINEERED GENETIC SEQUENCES (JOURNAL VERSION)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The transfer of recombinant DNA molecules from the introduced organism to natural populations of bacteria may be an important factor in assessing the outcomes of planned release of genetically engineered organisms into the environment. As genetic transfer is further investigated,...

  18. Grant Patents on Animals? An Ethical and Legal Battle Looms.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wheeler, David L.

    1987-01-01

    Rulings on applications for animal patents being considered by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office could profoundly influence university patent and research income. Many animal-rights advocates have expressed philosophical objections to genetic engineering of animals. (MLW)

  19. The ecology and evolution of animal medication: genetically fixed response versus phenotypic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Choisy, Marc; de Roode, Jacobus C

    2014-08-01

    Animal medication against parasites can occur either as a genetically fixed (constitutive) or phenotypically plastic (induced) behavior. Taking the tritrophic interaction between the monarch butterfly Danaus plexippus, its protozoan parasite Ophryocystis elektroscirrha, and its food plant Asclepias spp. as a test case, we develop a game-theory model to identify the epidemiological (parasite prevalence and virulence) and environmental (plant toxicity and abundance) conditions that predict the evolution of genetically fixed versus phenotypically plastic forms of medication. Our model shows that the relative benefits (the antiparasitic properties of medicinal food) and costs (side effects of medicine, the costs of searching for medicine, and the costs of plasticity itself) crucially determine whether medication is genetically fixed or phenotypically plastic. Our model suggests that animals evolve phenotypic plasticity when parasite risk (a combination of virulence and prevalence and thus a measure of the strength of parasite-mediated selection) is relatively low to moderately high and genetically fixed medication when parasite risk becomes very high. The latter occurs because at high parasite risk, the costs of plasticity are outweighed by the benefits of medication. Our model provides a simple and general framework to study the conditions that drive the evolution of alternative forms of animal medication. PMID:25061676

  20. Advances in genetic modification of farm animals using zinc-finger nucleases (ZFN).

    PubMed

    Petersen, Bjoern; Niemann, Heiner

    2015-02-01

    Genome editing tools (GET), including zinc-finger nucleases (ZFN), transcription activator-like endonucleases (TALENS), and meganucleases possess long recognition sites and are thus capable of cutting DNA in a very specific manner. These genome editing tools mediate targeted genetic alterations by enhancing DNA mutation frequency via induction of double-strand breaks at a predetermined genomic site. Compared to conventional homologous recombination based gene targeting, GETs can increase gene targeting and gene disruption via mutagenic DNA repair more than 10,000-fold. Recently, a novel class of genome editing tools was described that uses RNAs to target a specific genomic site. The CRISPR/Cas9 system is capable of targeting even multiple genomic sites in one shot and thus could be superior to ZFNs or TALEN. Current results indicate that these tools can be successfully employed in a broad range of organisms which renders them useful for improving the understanding of complex physiological systems, producing transgenic animals, including creating large animal models for human diseases, creating specific cell lines, and plants, and even for treating human genetic diseases. This review provides an update on the use of ZFNs to modify the genome of farm animals, summarizes current knowledge on the underlying mechanism, and discusses new opportunities for generating genetically modified farm animals. PMID:25596823

  1. Climate change and the characterization, breeding and conservation of animal genetic resources.

    PubMed

    Hoffmann, Irene

    2010-05-01

    Livestock production both contributes to and is affected by climate change. In addition to the physiological effects of higher temperatures on individual animals, the consequences of climate change are likely to include increased risk that geographically restricted rare breed populations will be badly affected by disturbances. Indirect effects may be felt via ecosystem changes that alter the distribution of animal diseases or affect the supply of feed. Breeding goals may have to be adjusted to account for higher temperatures, lower quality diets and greater disease challenge. Species and breeds that are well adapted to such conditions may become more widely used. Climate change mitigation strategies, in combination with ever increasing demand for food, may also have an impact on breed and species utilization, driving a shift towards monogastrics and breeds that are efficient converters of feed into meat, milk and eggs. This may lead to the neglect of the adaptation potential of local breeds in developing countries. Given the potential for significant future changes in production conditions and in the objectives of livestock production, it is essential that the value provided by animal genetic diversity is secured. This requires better characterization of breeds, production environments and associated knowledge; the compilation of more complete breed inventories; improved mechanisms to monitor and respond to threats to genetic diversity; more effective in situ and ex situ conservation measures; genetic improvement programmes targeting adaptive traits in high-output and performance traits in locally adapted breeds; increased support for developing countries in their management of animal genetic resources; and wider access to genetic resources and associated knowledge. PMID:20500754

  2. Assessing the Permeability of Landscape Features to Animal Movement: Using Genetic Structure to Infer Functional Connectivity

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, Sara J.; Kierepka, Elizabeth M.; Swihart, Robert K.; Latch, Emily K.; Rhodes, Olin E.

    2015-01-01

    Human-altered environments often challenge native species with a complex spatial distribution of resources. Hostile landscape features can inhibit animal movement (i.e., genetic exchange), while other landscape attributes facilitate gene flow. The genetic attributes of organisms inhabiting such complex environments can reveal the legacy of their movements through the landscape. Thus, by evaluating landscape attributes within the context of genetic connectivity of organisms within the landscape, we can elucidate how a species has coped with the enhanced complexity of human altered environments. In this research, we utilized genetic data from eastern chipmunks (Tamias striatus) in conjunction with spatially explicit habitat attribute data to evaluate the realized permeability of various landscape elements in a fragmented agricultural ecosystem. To accomplish this we 1) used logistic regression to evaluate whether land cover attributes were most often associated with the matrix between or habitat within genetically identified populations across the landscape, and 2) utilized spatially explicit habitat attribute data to predict genetically-derived Bayesian probabilities of population membership of individual chipmunks in an agricultural ecosystem. Consistency between the results of the two approaches with regard to facilitators and inhibitors of gene flow in the landscape indicate that this is a promising new way to utilize both landscape and genetic data to gain a deeper understanding of human-altered ecosystems. PMID:25719366

  3. Colonization genetics of an animal-dispersed plant (Vaccinium membranaceum) at Mount St Helens, Washington.

    PubMed

    Yang, S; Bishop, J G; Webster, M S

    2008-02-01

    Population founding and spatial spread may profoundly influence later population genetic structure, but their effects are difficult to quantify when population history is unknown. We examined the genetic effects of founder group formation in a recently founded population of the animal-dispersed Vaccinium membranaceum (black huckleberry) on new volcanic deposits at Mount St Helens (Washington, USA) 24 years post-eruption. Using amplified fragment length polymorphisms and assignment tests, we determined sources of the newly founded population and characterized genetic variation within new and source populations. Our analyses indicate that while founders were derived from many sources, about half originated from a small number of plants that survived the 1980 eruption in pockets of remnant soil embedded within primary successional areas. We found no evidence of a strong founder effect in the new population; indeed genetic diversity in the newly founded population tended to be higher than in some of the source regions. Similarly, formation of the new population did not increase among-population genetic variance, and there was no evidence of kin-structured dispersal in the new population. These results indicate that high gene flow among sources and long-distance dispersal were important processes shaping the genetic diversity in this young V. membranaceum population. Other species with similar dispersal abilities may also be able to colonize new habitats without significant reduction in genetic diversity or increase in differentiation among populations. PMID:18194163

  4. Assessing the permeability of landscape features to animal movement: using genetic structure to infer functional connectivity.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Sara J; Kierepka, Elizabeth M; Swihart, Robert K; Latch, Emily K; Rhodes, Olin E

    2015-01-01

    Human-altered environments often challenge native species with a complex spatial distribution of resources. Hostile landscape features can inhibit animal movement (i.e., genetic exchange), while other landscape attributes facilitate gene flow. The genetic attributes of organisms inhabiting such complex environments can reveal the legacy of their movements through the landscape. Thus, by evaluating landscape attributes within the context of genetic connectivity of organisms within the landscape, we can elucidate how a species has coped with the enhanced complexity of human altered environments. In this research, we utilized genetic data from eastern chipmunks (Tamias striatus) in conjunction with spatially explicit habitat attribute data to evaluate the realized permeability of various landscape elements in a fragmented agricultural ecosystem. To accomplish this we 1) used logistic regression to evaluate whether land cover attributes were most often associated with the matrix between or habitat within genetically identified populations across the landscape, and 2) utilized spatially explicit habitat attribute data to predict genetically-derived Bayesian probabilities of population membership of individual chipmunks in an agricultural ecosystem. Consistency between the results of the two approaches with regard to facilitators and inhibitors of gene flow in the landscape indicate that this is a promising new way to utilize both landscape and genetic data to gain a deeper understanding of human-altered ecosystems. PMID:25719366

  5. Statistics of Scientific Procedures on Living Animals 2013: Experimentation continues to rise - the reliance on genetically-altered animals must be addressed.

    PubMed

    Hudson-Shore, Michelle

    2014-09-01

    The 2013 Statistics of Scientific Procedures on Living Animals reveal that the level of animal experimentation in Great Britain continues to rise, with 4.12 million procedures being conducted. The figures indicate that this is almost exclusively a result of the breeding and use of genetically-altered (GA) animals (i.e. genetically-modified animals, plus those with harmful genetic defects). The breeding of GA animals increased to over half (51%) of all the procedures, and GA animals were involved in 61% of all the procedures. Indeed, if these animals were removed from the statistics, the number of procedures would actually have declined by 4%. It is argued that the Coalition Government has failed to address this issue, and, as a consequence, will not be able to deliver its pledge to reduce animal use in science. Recent publications supporting the need to reassess the dominance of genetic alteration are also discussed, as well as the need to move away from the use of dogs as the default second species in safety testing. The general trends in the species used, and the numbers and types of procedures, are also reviewed. Finally, forthcoming changes to the statistics are discussed. PMID:25290946

  6. Measuring genetic stability in bacteria of potential use in genetic engineering.

    PubMed

    Walter, M V; Porteous, A; Seidler, R J

    1987-01-01

    Four commonly used conjugation techniques, colony cross streak (CCS), broth mating (BM), combined spread plate (CSP), and membrane filtration (MF), were compared with each other regarding reliability, sensitivity, and complexity in evaluating the transfer of conjugative plasmids. Five plasmids representing several incompatibility groups plus a variety of laboratory and environmental isolates were used as mating pairs. The suitability of each method was evaluated for use in a routine assessment of the genetic stability of genetically engineered microorganisms. By the CSP and MF techniques with laboratory strains such as Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas species as recipients, transconjugants were usually produced in 100% of the mating trials. However, when environmental strains isolated from plants and soil were used as recipients, transconjugants were detected in 100% of some crosses and in as little as 30% in other crosses depending on the plasmid and recipient used. In general, differences in the percentage of successful matings between the CSP and MF techniques compared with the BM and CCS techniques were not statistically significant at the P less than or equal to 0.05 level. Occasionally, certain mating pairs consistently produced transconjugants by CCS or BM but not by CSP or MF. Since any single conjugation mating technique is not completely reliable in detecting transconjugants, we have developed a combined mating technique which integrates the CCS, CSP, BM, and MF methods as a single procedure to assess the mobility of plasmid DNA of genetically engineered microorganisms. PMID:3548588

  7. Preclinical in vitro models from genetically engineered mice for breast and colon cancer (Review).

    PubMed

    Telang, Nitin; Katdare, Meena

    2011-05-01

    Genetically engineered mice with targeted alterations in clinically relevant oncogenes, tumor suppressor genes or DNA mismatch repair genes provide unique predictive animal models for human carcinogenesis, and cancer prevention/therapy. However, some of the genetically engineered mouse models lack target organ specificity for colon carcinogenesis. We have established, characterized and validated stable epithelial cell lines from 'normal' and 'genetically' predisposed target organs that offer innovative and mechanistic approaches, complementing in vivo studies on existing animal models for clinical breast and colon cancer. Epithelial cell lines with up- regulated Ras or myc oncogene, mutated Apc tumor suppressor gene and Mlh1 DNA mismatch repair gene provide facile experimental systems for organ site carcinogenesis and cancer prevention. Altered expression of cancer specific biomarkers and their modulation by several synthetic pharmacological agents such as retinoids, selective estrogen receptor modulators, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and specific enzyme inhibitors have been reported from our laboratory. Oncogene expressing MMEC-Ras and MMEC-myc mammary epithelial cells, Apc mutant 850Min COL and 1638N COL, and DNA mismatch repair/Apc mutant Mlh1/1638N COL colon epithelial cells exhibit aberrant cell cycle progression, down-regulated apoptosis and enhanced carcinogenic risk in vitro and tumor formation in vivo. We have reported that relative to the parental 'normal' non-neoplastic cells, genetically 'altered' pre-neoplastic cells exhibit enhanced sensitivity for growth arrest by multiple mechanistically distinct pharmacological agents. Comparative experiments on isogenic 'normal' and genetically 'altered' target cell lines facilitate cancer selective efficacy and identification of susceptible mechanistic pathways. Treatment of these genetically 'altered' pre-neoplastic cells with low dose combination of mechanistically distinct pharmacological agents as well as naturally occurring phytochemicals induce cytostatic growth arrest, alter cell cycle progression and reduce carcinogenic risk. The availability of validated technology for model development, and for mechanism based biomarker assays now establishes a novel platform to rapidly test carcinogenicity and preventive/therapeutic efficacy of novel pharmacological agents as well as naturally occurring phytochemicals. Thus, these data permit rational prioritization of efficacious lead compounds for preclinical testing and future clinical trials for prevention/therapy of breast and colon cancer. PMID:21399881

  8. Animation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bregman, Gene

    1977-01-01

    Establishes the case for animation in projects in the art program, organized for upper elementary through the senior high school level. Describes three simple introductory activities to help students understand the basic theory of animation. (Editor/RK)

  9. Genetically-engineered oncolytic Newcastle disease virus effectively induces sustained remission of malignant pleural mesothelioma

    PubMed Central

    Silberhumer, Gerd R.; Brader, Peter; Wong, Joyce; Serganova, Inna S.; Gnen, Mithat; Gonzalez, Segundo Jaime; Blasberg, Ronald; Zamarin, Dmitriy; Fong, Yuman

    2012-01-01

    Purpose Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is a highly aggressive tumor. Alternative treatment strategies such as oncolytic viral therapy may offer promising treatment options in the future. In this study, the oncolytic efficacy and induction of tumor remission by a genetically-engineered Newcastle disease virus (NDV(F3aa)-GFP) in MPM is tested and monitored by bioluminescent tumor imaging. Experimental Design The efficacy of NDV(F3aa)-GFP was tested against several mesothelioma cell lines in vitro. Firefly luciferase transduced MSTO-211H* orthotopic pleural mesothelioma tumor-bearing animals were treated with either single or multiple doses of NDV(F3aa)-GFP at different time points (days 1 and 10) after tumor implantation. Tumor burden was assessed by bioluminescence imaging. Results Mesothelioma cell lines exhibited dose-dependent susceptibility to NDV lysis in the following order of sensitivity: MSTO-211H>MSTO-211H*>H-2452>VAMT>JMN. In vivo studies with MSTO-211H* cells showed complete response to viral therapy in 65% of the animals within 14 days after treatment initiation. Long term survival in all of these animals was > 50 days after tumor installation (control animals <23 days). Multiple compared with single treatment showed a significantly better response (p=0.005). Conclusions NDV appears to be an efficient viral oncolytic agent in therapy of MPM in an orthotopic pleural mesothelioma tumor model. PMID:20858727

  10. Sequence-engineered mRNA Without Chemical Nucleoside Modifications Enables an Effective Protein Therapy in Large Animals.

    PubMed

    Thess, Andreas; Grund, Stefanie; Mui, Barbara L; Hope, Michael J; Baumhof, Patrick; Fotin-Mleczek, Mariola; Schlake, Thomas

    2015-09-01

    Being a transient carrier of genetic information, mRNA could be a versatile, flexible, and safe means for protein therapies. While recent findings highlight the enormous therapeutic potential of mRNA, evidence that mRNA-based protein therapies are feasible beyond small animals such as mice is still lacking. Previous studies imply that mRNA therapeutics require chemical nucleoside modifications to obtain sufficient protein expression and avoid activation of the innate immune system. Here we show that chemically unmodified mRNA can achieve those goals as well by applying sequence-engineered molecules. Using erythropoietin (EPO) driven production of red blood cells as the biological model, engineered Epo mRNA elicited meaningful physiological responses from mice to nonhuman primates. Even in pigs of about 20?kg in weight, a single adequate dose of engineered mRNA encapsulated in lipid nanoparticles (LNPs) induced high systemic Epo levels and strong physiological effects. Our results demonstrate that sequence-engineered mRNA has the potential to revolutionize human protein therapies. PMID:26050989

  11. Tissue Engineering in Animal Models for Urinary Diversion: A Systematic Review

    PubMed Central

    Sloff, Marije; de Vries, Rob; Geutjes, Paul; IntHout, Joanna; Ritskes-Hoitinga, Merel

    2014-01-01

    Tissue engineering and regenerative medicine (TERM) approaches may provide alternatives for gastrointestinal tissue in urinary diversion. To continue to clinically translatable studies, TERM alternatives need to be evaluated in (large) controlled and standardized animal studies. Here, we investigated all evidence for the efficacy of tissue engineered constructs in animal models for urinary diversion. Studies investigating this subject were identified through a systematic search of three different databases (PubMed, Embase and Web of Science). From each study, animal characteristics, study characteristics and experimental outcomes for meta-analyses were tabulated. Furthermore, the reporting of items vital for study replication was assessed. The retrieved studies (8 in total) showed extreme heterogeneity in study design, including animal models, biomaterials and type of urinary diversion. All studies were feasibility studies, indicating the novelty of this field. None of the studies included appropriate control groups, i.e. a comparison with the classical treatment using GI tissue. The meta-analysis showed a trend towards successful experimentation in larger animals although no specific animal species could be identified as the most suitable model. Larger animals appear to allow a better translation to the human situation, with respect to anatomy and surgical approaches. It was unclear whether the use of cells benefits the formation of a neo urinary conduit. The reporting of the methodology and data according to standardized guidelines was insufficient and should be improved to increase the value of such publications. In conclusion, animal models in the field of TERM for urinary diversion have probably been chosen for reasons other than their predictive value. Controlled and comparative long term animal studies, with adequate methodological reporting are needed to proceed to clinical translatable studies. This will aid in good quality research with the reduction in the use of animals and an increase in empirical evidence of biomedical research. PMID:24964011

  12. A review on SNP and other types of molecular markers and their use in animal genetics

    PubMed Central

    Vignal, Alain; Milan, Denis; SanCristobal, Magali; Eggen, Andr

    2002-01-01

    During the last ten years, the use of molecular markers, revealing polymorphism at the DNA level, has been playing an increasing part in animal genetics studies. Amongst others, the microsatellite DNA marker has been the most widely used, due to its easy use by simple PCR, followed by a denaturing gel electrophoresis for allele size determination, and to the high degree of information provided by its large number of alleles per locus. Despite this, a new marker type, named SNP, for Single Nucleotide Polymorphism, is now on the scene and has gained high popularity, even though it is only a bi-allelic type of marker. In this review, we will discuss the reasons for this apparent step backwards, and the pertinence of the use of SNPs in animal genetics, in comparison with other marker types. PMID:12081799

  13. Teaching Habitat and Animal Classification to Fourth Graders Using an Engineering-Design Model

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Marulcu, Ismail

    2014-01-01

    Background: The motivation for this work is built upon the premise that there is a need for research-based materials for design-based science instruction. In this paper, a small portion of our work investigating the impact of a LEGO[TM] engineering unit on fourth grade students' preconceptions and understanding of animals is presented.…

  14. Teaching Habitat and Animal Classification to Fourth Graders Using an Engineering-Design Model

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Marulcu, Ismail

    2014-01-01

    Background: The motivation for this work is built upon the premise that there is a need for research-based materials for design-based science instruction. In this paper, a small portion of our work investigating the impact of a LEGO[TM] engineering unit on fourth grade students' preconceptions and understanding of animals is presented.

  15. Genetically engineered stem cells for therapeutic gene delivery.

    PubMed

    Conrad, Claudius; Gupta, Rashmi; Mohan, Hema; Niess, Hanno; Bruns, Christiane J; Kopp, Reinhard; von Luettichau, Irene; Guba, Markus; Heeschen, Christopher; Jauch, Karl-Walter; Huss, Ralf; Nelson, Peter J

    2007-08-01

    Stem cell and gene therapy approaches have held out much hope for the development of new tools to treat disease. Therapeutic approaches based on these methods have only rarely found their way into the clinic. The linking of stem cell therapy with selective gene therapy enhances therapeutic options for the regeneration or replacement of diseased or missing cells. This review focuses on the rationale and preliminary results of combining stem cell and gene therapy. Special emphasis is placed on various molecular techniques currently used to genetically engineer stem cells. Viral and nonviral genes delivering technologies are detailed as are techniques for the modulation of gene expression in the context of stem cell recruitment and differentiation. Finally potential clinical applications for this new therapeutic strategy are discussed. PMID:17969558

  16. Genetic engineering of Escherichia coli for biofuel production.

    PubMed

    Liu, Tiangang; Khosla, Chaitan

    2010-01-01

    In order to mitigate climate change without adversely affecting global energy supply, there is growing interest in the possibility of producing transportation fuels from renewable sources via microbial fermentation. Central to this challenge is the design of biocatalysts that can efficiently convert cheap lignocellulosic raw materials into liquid fuels. Owing to the wealth of genetic and metabolic knowledge associated with Escherichia coli, this bacterium is the most convenient starting point for engineering microbial catalysts for biofuel production. Here, we review the range of liquid fuels that can be produced in E. coli and discuss the underlying biochemistry that enables these metabolic products. The fundamental and technological challenges encountered in the development of efficient fermentation processes for biofuel production are highlighted. The example of biodiesel is a particularly illustrative case study and is therefore discussed in detail. PMID:20822440

  17. Modelling of Genetically Engineered Microorganisms Introduction in Closed Artificial Microcosms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pechurkin, N. S.; Brilkov, A. V.; Ganusov, V. V.; Kargatova, T. V.; Maksimova, E. E.; Popova, L. Yu.

    1999-01-01

    The possibility of introducing genetically engineered microorganisms (GEM) into simple biotic cycles of laboratory water microcosms was investigated. The survival of the recombinant strain Escherichia coli Z905 (Apr, Lux+) in microcosms depends on the type of model ecosystems. During the absence of algae blooming in the model ecosystem, the part of plasmid-containing cells E. coli decreased fast, and the structure of the plasmid was also modified. In conditions of algae blooming (Ankistrodesmus sp.) an almost total maintenance of plasmid-containing cells was observed in E.coli population. A mathematics model of GEM's behavior in water ecosystems with different level of complexity has been formulated. Mechanisms causing the difference in luminescent exhibition of different species are discussed, and attempts are made to forecast the GEM's behavior in water ecosystems.

  18. Chilling sensitivity of Arabidopsis thaliana with genetically engineered membrane lipids.

    PubMed Central

    Wolter, F P; Schmidt, R; Heinz, E

    1992-01-01

    Upon transfer of a genetically engineered Escherichia coli gene for glycerol-3-phosphate acyltransferase (plsB) to Arabidopsis thaliana (L.) Heynh., the gene is transcribed and translated into an enzymatically active polypeptide. This leads to an alteration in fatty acid composition of membrane lipids. From these alterations it is evident that the enzyme is located mainly inside the plastids. The amount of saturated fatty acids in plastidial membrane lipids increased. In particular, the fraction of high-temperature melting species of phosphatidylglycerol is elevated. These molecules are thought to play a crucial role in determining chilling sensitivity of plants. An increase in sensitivity could be observed in the transgenic plants during recultivation after chilling treatment. Implications for the hypothesis of phosphatidylglycerol-determined chilling sensitivity are discussed. Images PMID:1464304

  19. Optochemical control of genetically engineered neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tochitsky, Ivan; Banghart, Matthew R.; Mourot, Alexandre; Yao, Jennifer Z.; Gaub, Benjamin; Kramer, Richard H.; Trauner, Dirk

    2012-02-01

    Advances in synthetic chemistry, structural biology, molecular modelling and molecular cloning have enabled the systematic functional manipulation of transmembrane proteins. By combining genetically manipulated proteins with light-sensitive ligands, innately blind neurobiological receptors can be converted into photoreceptors, which allows them to be photoregulated with high spatiotemporal precision. Here, we present the optochemical control of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) with photoswitchable tethered agonists and antagonists. Using structure-based design, we produced heteromeric ?3?4 and ?4?2 nAChRs that can be activated or inhibited with deep-violet light, but respond normally to acetylcholine in the dark. The generation of these engineered receptors should facilitate investigation of the physiological and pathological functions of neuronal nAChRs and open a general pathway to photosensitizing pentameric ligand-gated ion channels.

  20. Barriers and paths to market for genetically engineered crops.

    PubMed

    Rommens, Caius M

    2010-02-01

    Each year, billions of dollars are invested in efforts to improve crops through genetic engineering (GE). These activities have resulted in a surge of publications and patents on technologies and genes: a momentum in basic research that, unfortunately, is not sustained throughout the subsequent phases of product development. After more than two decades of intensive research, the market for transgenic crops is still dominated by applications of just a handful of methods and genes. This discrepancy between research and development reflects difficulties in understanding and overcoming seven main barriers-to-entry: (1) trait efficacy in the field, (2) critical product concepts, (3) freedom-to-operate, (4) industry support, (5) identity preservation and stewardship, (6) regulatory approval and (7) retail and consumer acceptance. In this review, I describe the various roadblocks to market for transgenic crops and also discuss methods and approaches on how to overcome these, especially in the United States. PMID:19968823

  1. Efficient genetic engineering of human intestinal organoids using electroporation.

    PubMed

    Fujii, Masayuki; Matano, Mami; Nanki, Kosaku; Sato, Toshiro

    2015-10-01

    Gene modification in untransformed human intestinal cells is an attractive approach for studying gene function in intestinal diseases. However, because of the lack of practical tools, such studies have largely depended upon surrogates, such as gene-engineered mice or immortalized human cell lines. By taking advantage of the recently developed intestinal organoid culture method, we developed a methodology for modulating genes of interest in untransformed human colonic organoids via electroporation of gene vectors. Here we describe a detailed protocol for the generation of intestinal organoids by culture with essential growth factors in a basement membrane matrix. We also describe how to stably integrate genes via the piggyBac transposon, as well as precise genome editing using the CRISPR-Cas9 system. Beginning with crypt isolation from a human colon sample, genetically modified organoids can be obtained in 3 weeks. PMID:26334867

  2. Diverse plant and animal genetic records from Holocene and Pleistocene sediments.

    PubMed

    Willerslev, Eske; Hansen, Anders J; Binladen, Jonas; Brand, Tina B; Gilbert, M Thomas P; Shapiro, Beth; Bunce, Michael; Wiuf, Carsten; Gilichinsky, David A; Cooper, Alan

    2003-05-01

    Genetic analyses of permafrost and temperate sediments reveal that plant and animal DNA may be preserved for long periods, even in the absence of obvious macrofossils. In Siberia, five permafrost cores ranging from 400,000 to 10,000 years old contained at least 19 different plant taxa, including the oldest authenticated ancient DNA sequences known, and megafaunal sequences including mammoth, bison, and horse. The genetic data record a number of dramatic changes in the taxonomic diversity and composition of Beringian vegetation and fauna. Temperate cave sediments in New Zealand also yielded DNA sequences of extinct biota, including two species of ratite moa, and 29 plant taxa characteristic of the prehuman environment. Therefore, many sedimentary deposits may contain unique, and widespread, genetic records of paleoenvironments. PMID:12702808

  3. Genetic engineering and therapy for inherited and acquired cardiomyopathies.

    PubMed

    Day, Sharlene; Davis, Jennifer; Westfall, Margaret; Metzger, Joseph

    2006-10-01

    The cardiac myofilaments consist of a highly ordered assembly of proteins that collectively generate force in a calcium-dependent manner. Defects in myofilament function and its regulation have been implicated in various forms of acquired and inherited human heart disease. For example, during cardiac ischemia, cardiac myocyte contractile performance is dramatically downregulated due in part to a reduced sensitivity of the myofilaments to calcium under acidic pH conditions. Over the last several years, the thin filament regulatory protein, troponin I, has been identified as an important mediator of this response. Mutations in troponin I and other sarcomere genes are also linked to several distinct inherited cardiomyopathic phenotypes, including hypertrophic, dilated, and restrictive cardiomyopathies. With the cardiac sarcomere emerging as a central player for such a diverse array of human heart diseases, genetic-based strategies that target the myofilament will likely have broad therapeutic potential. The development of safe vector systems for efficient gene delivery will be a critical hurdle to overcome before these types of therapies can be successfully applied. Nonetheless, studies focusing on the principles of acute genetic engineering of the sarcomere hold value as they lay the essential foundation on which to build potential gene-based therapies for heart disease. PMID:17132800

  4. Progress in genetic engineering of peanut (Arachis hypogaea L.)--a review.

    PubMed

    Krishna, Gaurav; Singh, Birendra K; Kim, Eun-Ki; Morya, Vivek K; Ramteke, Pramod W

    2015-02-01

    Peanut (Arachis hypogaea L.) is a major species of the family, Leguminosae, and economically important not only for vegetable oil but as a source of proteins, minerals and vitamins. It is widely grown in the semi-arid tropics and plays a role in the world agricultural economy. Peanut production and productivity is constrained by several biotic (insect pests and diseases) and abiotic (drought, salinity, water logging and temperature aberrations) stresses, as a result of which crop experiences serious economic losses. Genetic engineering techniques such as Agrobacterium tumefaciens and DNA-bombardment-mediated transformation are used as powerful tools to complement conventional breeding and expedite peanut improvement by the introduction of agronomically useful traits in high-yield background. Resistance to several fungal, virus and insect pest have been achieved through variety of approaches ranging from gene coding for cell wall component, pathogenesis-related proteins, oxalate oxidase, bacterial chloroperoxidase, coat proteins, RNA interference, crystal proteins etc. To develop transgenic plants withstanding major abiotic stresses, genes coding transcription factors for drought and salinity, cytokinin biosynthesis, nucleic acid processing, ion antiporter and human antiapoptotic have been used. Moreover, peanut has also been used in vaccine production for the control of several animal diseases. In addition to above, this study also presents a comprehensive account on the influence of some important factors on peanut genetic engineering. Future research thrusts not only suggest the use of different approaches for higher expression of transgene(s) but also provide a way forward for the improvement of crops. PMID:25626474

  5. Genetic Engineering: A Matter that Requires Further Refinement in Spanish Secondary School Textbooks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Martinez-Gracia, M. V.; Gil-Quylez, M. J.; Osada, J.

    2003-01-01

    Genetic engineering is now an integral part of many high school textbooks but little work has been done to assess whether it is being properly addressed. A checklist with 19 items was used to analyze how genetic engineering is presented in biology textbooks commonly used in Spanish high schools, including the content, its relationship with…

  6. Genetic Engineering: A Matter that Requires Further Refinement in Spanish Secondary School Textbooks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Martinez-Gracia, M. V.; Gil-Quylez, M. J.; Osada, J.

    2003-01-01

    Genetic engineering is now an integral part of many high school textbooks but little work has been done to assess whether it is being properly addressed. A checklist with 19 items was used to analyze how genetic engineering is presented in biology textbooks commonly used in Spanish high schools, including the content, its relationship with

  7. Animator

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tech Directions, 2008

    2008-01-01

    Art and animation work is the most significant part of electronic game development, but is also found in television commercials, computer programs, the Internet, comic books, and in just about every visual media imaginable. It is the part of the project that makes an abstract design idea concrete and visible. Animators create the motion of life in

  8. Animator

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tech Directions, 2008

    2008-01-01

    Art and animation work is the most significant part of electronic game development, but is also found in television commercials, computer programs, the Internet, comic books, and in just about every visual media imaginable. It is the part of the project that makes an abstract design idea concrete and visible. Animators create the motion of life in…

  9. Chemical and genetic engineering of selective ion channel-ligand interactions.

    PubMed

    Magnus, Christopher J; Lee, Peter H; Atasoy, Deniz; Su, Helen H; Looger, Loren L; Sternson, Scott M

    2011-09-01

    Ionic flux mediates essential physiological and behavioral functions in defined cell populations. Cell type-specific activators of diverse ionic conductances are needed for probing these effects. We combined chemistry and protein engineering to enable the systematic creation of a toolbox of ligand-gated ion channels (LGICs) with orthogonal pharmacologic selectivity and divergent functional properties. The LGICs and their small-molecule effectors were able to activate a range of ionic conductances in genetically specified cell types. LGICs constructed for neuronal perturbation could be used to selectively manipulate neuron activity in mammalian brains in vivo. The diversity of ion channel tools accessible from this approach will be useful for examining the relationship between neuronal activity and animal behavior, as well as for cell biological and physiological applications requiring chemical control of ion conductance. PMID:21885782

  10. Chemical and genetic engineering of selective ligand-ion channel interactions

    PubMed Central

    Magnus, Christopher J.; Lee, Peter H.; Atasoy, Deniz; Su, Helen H.; Looger, Loren L.; Sternson, Scott M.

    2011-01-01

    Ionic flux in defined cell populations mediates essential physiological and behavioral functions. Cell type-specific activators of diverse ionic conductances are needed for probing these relationships. We combined chemistry and protein engineering to enable systematic creation of a toolbox of ligand-gated ion channels (LGICs) with orthogonal pharmacologic selectivity and divergent functional properties. The LGICs and their small molecule effectors can activate a range of ionic conductances in genetically-specified cell types. LGICs constructed for neuronal perturbation can be used to selectively manipulate neuron activity in mammalian brains in vivo. The diversity of ion channel tools accessible from this approach will be useful for examining the relationship between neuronal activity and animal behavior, as well as for cell biological and physiological applications requiring chemical control of ion conductance. PMID:21885782

  11. Comparative population genomics in animals uncovers the determinants of genetic diversity.

    PubMed

    Romiguier, J; Gayral, P; Ballenghien, M; Bernard, A; Cahais, V; Chenuil, A; Chiari, Y; Dernat, R; Duret, L; Faivre, N; Loire, E; Lourenco, J M; Nabholz, B; Roux, C; Tsagkogeorga, G; Weber, A A-T; Weinert, L A; Belkhir, K; Bierne, N; Glmin, S; Galtier, N

    2014-11-13

    Genetic diversity is the amount of variation observed between DNA sequences from distinct individuals of a given species. This pivotal concept of population genetics has implications for species health, domestication, management and conservation. Levels of genetic diversity seem to vary greatly in natural populations and species, but the determinants of this variation, and particularly the relative influences of species biology and ecology versus population history, are still largely mysterious. Here we show that the diversity of a species is predictable, and is determined in the first place by its ecological strategy. We investigated the genome-wide diversity of 76 non-model animal species by sequencing the transcriptome of two to ten individuals in each species. The distribution of genetic diversity between species revealed no detectable influence of geographic range or invasive status but was accurately predicted by key species traits related to parental investment: long-lived or low-fecundity species with brooding ability were genetically less diverse than short-lived or highly fecund ones. Our analysis demonstrates the influence of long-term life-history strategies on species response to short-term environmental perturbations, a result with immediate implications for conservation policies. PMID:25141177

  12. Genetic evaluation of fertility traits of dairy cattle using a multiple-trait animal model.

    PubMed

    Liu, Z; Jaitner, J; Reinhardt, F; Pasman, E; Rensing, S; Reents, R

    2008-11-01

    A genetic evaluation system was developed for 5 fertility traits of dairy cattle: interval from first to successful insemination and nonreturn rate to 56 d of heifers, and interval from calving to first insemination, nonreturn rate to 56 d, and interval first to successful insemination of cows. Using the 2 interval traits of cows as components, breeding values for days open were derived. A multiple-trait animal model was applied to evaluate these fertility traits. Fertility traits of later lactations of cows were treated as repeated measurements. Genetic parameters were estimated by REML. Mixed model equations of the genetic evaluation model were solved with preconditioned conjugate gradients or the Gauss-Seidel algorithm and iteration on data techniques. Reliabilities of estimated breeding values were approximated with a multi-trait effective daughter contribution method. Daughter yield deviations and associated effective daughter contributions were calculated with a multiple trait approach. The genetic evaluation software was applied to the insemination data of dairy cattle breeds in Germany, Austria, and Luxembourg, and it was validated with various statistical methods. Genetic trends were validated. Small heritability estimates were obtained for all the fertility traits, ranging from 1% for nonreturn rate of heifers to 4% for interval calving to first insemination. Genetic and environmental correlations were low to moderate among the traits. Notably, unfavorable genetic trends were obtained in all the fertility traits. Moderate to high correlations were found between daughter yield-deviations and estimated breeding values (EBV) for Holstein bulls. Because of much lower heritabilities of the fertility traits, the correlations of daughter yield deviations with EBV were significantly lower than those from production traits and lower than the correlations from type traits and longevity. Fertility EBV were correlated unfavorably with EBV of milk production traits but favorably with udder health and longevity. Integrating fertility traits into a total merit selection index can halt or reverse the decline of fertility and improve the longevity of dairy cattle. PMID:18946139

  13. Utilization of farm animal genetic resources in a changing agro-ecological environment in the Nordic countries.

    PubMed

    Kantanen, Juha; Løvendahl, Peter; Strandberg, Erling; Eythorsdottir, Emma; Li, Meng-Hua; Kettunen-Præbel, Anne; Berg, Peer; Meuwissen, Theo

    2015-01-01

    Livestock production is the most important component of northern European agriculture and contributes to and will be affected by climate change. Nevertheless, the role of farm animal genetic resources in the adaptation to new agro-ecological conditions and mitigation of animal production's effects on climate change has been inadequately discussed despite there being several important associations between animal genetic resources and climate change issues. The sustainability of animal production systems and future food security require access to a wide diversity of animal genetic resources. There are several genetic questions that should be considered in strategies promoting adaptation to climate change and mitigation of environmental effects of livestock production. For example, it may become important to choose among breeds and even among farm animal species according to their suitability to a future with altered production systems. Some animals with useful phenotypes and genotypes may be more useful than others in the changing environment. Robust animal breeds with the potential to adapt to new agro-ecological conditions and tolerate new diseases will be needed. The key issue in mitigation of harmful greenhouse gas effects induced by livestock production is the reduction of methane (CH4) emissions from ruminants. There are differences in CH4 emissions among breeds and among individual animals within breeds that suggest a potential for improvement in the trait through genetic selection. Characterization of breeds and individuals with modern genomic tools should be applied to identify breeds that have genetically adapted to marginal conditions and to get critical information for breeding and conservation programs for farm animal genetic resources. We conclude that phenotyping and genomic technologies and adoption of new breeding approaches, such as genomic selection introgression, will promote breeding for useful characters in livestock species. PMID:25767477

  14. Utilization of farm animal genetic resources in a changing agro-ecological environment in the Nordic countries

    PubMed Central

    Kantanen, Juha; Løvendahl, Peter; Strandberg, Erling; Eythorsdottir, Emma; Li, Meng-Hua; Kettunen-Præbel, Anne; Berg, Peer; Meuwissen, Theo

    2015-01-01

    Livestock production is the most important component of northern European agriculture and contributes to and will be affected by climate change. Nevertheless, the role of farm animal genetic resources in the adaptation to new agro-ecological conditions and mitigation of animal production’s effects on climate change has been inadequately discussed despite there being several important associations between animal genetic resources and climate change issues. The sustainability of animal production systems and future food security require access to a wide diversity of animal genetic resources. There are several genetic questions that should be considered in strategies promoting adaptation to climate change and mitigation of environmental effects of livestock production. For example, it may become important to choose among breeds and even among farm animal species according to their suitability to a future with altered production systems. Some animals with useful phenotypes and genotypes may be more useful than others in the changing environment. Robust animal breeds with the potential to adapt to new agro-ecological conditions and tolerate new diseases will be needed. The key issue in mitigation of harmful greenhouse gas effects induced by livestock production is the reduction of methane (CH4) emissions from ruminants. There are differences in CH4 emissions among breeds and among individual animals within breeds that suggest a potential for improvement in the trait through genetic selection. Characterization of breeds and individuals with modern genomic tools should be applied to identify breeds that have genetically adapted to marginal conditions and to get critical information for breeding and conservation programs for farm animal genetic resources. We conclude that phenotyping and genomic technologies and adoption of new breeding approaches, such as genomic selection introgression, will promote breeding for useful characters in livestock species. PMID:25767477

  15. Animal model integration to AutDB, a genetic database for autism

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background In the post-genomic era, multi-faceted research on complex disorders such as autism has generated diverse types of molecular information related to its pathogenesis. The rapid accumulation of putative candidate genes/loci for Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and ASD-related animal models poses a major challenge for systematic analysis of their content. We previously created the Autism Database (AutDB) to provide a publicly available web portal for ongoing collection, manual annotation, and visualization of genes linked to ASD. Here, we describe the design, development, and integration of a new module within AutDB for ongoing collection and comprehensive cataloguing of ASD-related animal models. Description As with the original AutDB, all data is extracted from published, peer-reviewed scientific literature. Animal models are annotated with a new standardized vocabulary of phenotypic terms developed by our researchers which is designed to reflect the diverse clinical manifestations of ASD. The new Animal Model module is seamlessly integrated to AutDB for dissemination of diverse information related to ASD. Animal model entries within the new module are linked to corresponding candidate genes in the original "Human Gene" module of the resource, thereby allowing for cross-modal navigation between gene models and human gene studies. Although the current release of the Animal Model module is restricted to mouse models, it was designed with an expandable framework which can easily incorporate additional species and non-genetic etiological models of autism in the future. Conclusions Importantly, this modular ASD database provides a platform from which data mining, bioinformatics, and/or computational biology strategies may be adopted to develop predictive disease models that may offer further insights into the molecular underpinnings of this disorder. It also serves as a general model for disease-driven databases curating phenotypic characteristics of corresponding animal models. PMID:21272355

  16. Non-genetic engineering of cells for drug delivery and cell-based therapy.

    PubMed

    Wang, Qun; Cheng, Hao; Peng, Haisheng; Zhou, Hao; Li, Peter Y; Langer, Robert

    2015-08-30

    Cell-based therapy is a promising modality to address many unmet medical needs. In addition to genetic engineering, material-based, biochemical, and physical science-based approaches have emerged as novel approaches to modify cells. Non-genetic engineering of cells has been applied in delivering therapeutics to tissues, homing of cells to the bone marrow or inflammatory tissues, cancer imaging, immunotherapy, and remotely controlling cellular functions. This new strategy has unique advantages in disease therapy and is complementary to existing gene-based cell engineering approaches. A better understanding of cellular systems and different engineering methods will allow us to better exploit engineered cells in biomedicine. Here, we review non-genetic cell engineering techniques and applications of engineered cells, discuss the pros and cons of different methods, and provide our perspectives on future research directions. PMID:25543006

  17. Genetic engineering strategies to prevent the effects of antibody and complement on xenogeneic chondrocytes.

    PubMed

    Sommaggio, R; Bello-Gil, D; Prez-Cruz, M; Brokaw, J L; Mez, R; Costa, C

    2015-01-01

    Advances in animal transgenesis may allow using xenogeneic chondrocytes in tissue-engineering applications for clinical cartilage repair. Porcine cartilage is rejected by humoral and cellular mechanisms that could be overcome by identifying key molecules triggering rejection and developing effective genetic-engineering strategies. Accordingly, high expression of ?1,2-fucosyltransferase (HT) in xenogeneic cartilage protects from galactose ?1,3-galactose (Gal)-mediated antibody responses. Now, we studied whether expression of a complement inhibitor provides further protection. First, porcine articular chondrocytes (PAC) were isolated from non-transgenic, single and double transgenic pigs expressing HT and moderate levels of human CD59 (hCD59) and their response to human serum was assessed. High recombinant expression of human complement regulatory molecules hCD59 and hDAF was also attained by retroviral transduction of PAC for further analyses. Complement activation on PAC after exposure to 20 % human serum for 24 hours mainly triggered the release of pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-6 and IL-8. Transgenic expression of HT and hCD59 did not suffice to fully counteract this effect. Nevertheless, the combination of blocking anti-Gal antibodies (or C5a) and high hCD59 levels conferred very high protection. On the contrary, high hDAF expression attained the most dramatic reduction in IL-6/IL-8 secretion by a single strategy, but the additional inhibition of anti-Gal antibodies or C5a did not provide further improvement. Notably, we demonstrate that both hCD59 and hDAF inhibit anaphylatoxin release in this setting. In conclusion, our study identifies genetic-engineering approaches to prevent humoral rejection of xenogeneic chondrocytes for use in cartilage repair. PMID:26579969

  18. A FIELD STUDY WITH GENETICALLY ENGINEERED ALFALFA INOCULATED WITH RECOMBINANT SINORHIZOBIUM MELILOTI: EFFECTS ON THE SOIL ECOSYSTEM

    EPA Science Inventory

    The agricultural use of genetically engineered plants and microorganisms has become increasingly common. Because genetically engineered plants and microorganisms can produce compounds foreign to their environment, there is concern that they may become established outside of thei...

  19. [Genetic and somatic effects of ionizing radiation in humans and animals (comparative aspect)].

    PubMed

    Vorobtsova, I E

    2002-01-01

    Genetic effects of ionizing radiation in the progeny of exposed parents could be conventionally subdivided on three main types. 1. Severe developmental disorders (fetus death, stillbirth, early postnatal mortality, malformation, hereditary disease, sterility). These effects are known to be caused by so called "gross" mutations (genomic, chromosomal, those of essential genes) with dominant harmful effects. Although found in rodents, insects, fishes they have not been found in humans. The proposal is made that the higher reproductive potency of a species the higher its tolerance for defective organisms. Due to strong selection against severe defects at the earliest stage of pregnancy, this genetic effect of radiation is likely to be difficult to detect in people. 2. Increased cancer risk manifested as elevated incidence of spontaneous tumors and increased sensitivity to carcinogenic agents. 3. Decreased fitness (non-carcinogenic negative health effects). These two last types of radiation genetic effects are presumably due to instability and functional inferiority of cell genome in the progeny of irradiated parents. The genetic background of these effects is suggested to be the load of induced minor mutations in regulatory genes (mini-, microsatelite loci) or/and epigenomic rearrangements of DNA in parental germ cells transmitted to progeny. These radiation genetic effects are much more obvious in animals as compared to humans. Apparently, they are difficult to find in humans because of their essential dependence on promotive (life style) factors, which are impossible to control in the offspring of irradiated people. A comparison of somatic (in irradiated organisms) and genetic (in the progeny of irradiated parents) effects of radiation provide evidence on the phenomenological as well as pathogenic similarity. PMID:12530142

  20. The National Animal Germplasm Program: challenges and opportunities for poultry genetic resources.

    PubMed

    Blackburn, H D

    2006-02-01

    In the United States, poultry genetic resources have consolidated because of economic pressures. Such consolidations can potentially jeopardize the poultry industry and the ability of research communities to respond to future challenges. To address the loss of genetic resources for all livestock and aquatic species, USDA established the National Animal Germplasm Program (NAGP) in 1999. Since the initiation of NAGP, population surveys have been conducted on nonindustrial chicken and turkey breeds. These surveys not only provide insight into breed status, but also serve as a benchmark for future comparisons. The survey results revealed that 20 chicken breeds and 9 turkey breeds were in various stages of being lost. The NAGP has initiated an ex situ repository for cryopreserved germplasm and tissue that already contains 59 chicken lines and 2,915 tissue samples. As the NAGP, along with its industry and university partners, continues developing the ex situ collection, there are research opportunities in cryopreserved tissue utilization and studies of genetic diversity. For cryopreserved tissues, several key research areas include improving the cryopreservation protocols for rooster and tom semen by using cryoprotectants other than glycerol and utilizing embryonic cells. Although surveys have been conducted on public research lines and rare breeds, there is a void in understanding the level of genetic diversity present in U.S. poultry populations. Therefore, an opportunity exists to perform a series of genetic diversity studies using molecular- based approaches. Such an evaluation can help clarify population differences between research lines and rare breeds and, thereby, facilitate conservation strategies. There appears to be growing consumer interest in poultry products derived from heritage breeds and/or poultry raised in nonindustrial production systems. Although the depth of such market trends is unknown, such an interest may provide an important niche for rare poultry breeds and, thereby, strengthen the genetic base. PMID:16523615

  1. A plasmid-based reverse genetics system for animal double-stranded RNA viruses.

    PubMed

    Kobayashi, Takeshi; Antar, Annukka A R; Boehme, Karl W; Danthi, Pranav; Eby, Elizabeth A; Guglielmi, Kristen M; Holm, Geoffrey H; Johnson, Elizabeth M; Maginnis, Melissa S; Naik, Sam; Skelton, Wesley B; Wetzel, J Denise; Wilson, Gregory J; Chappell, James D; Dermody, Terence S

    2007-04-19

    Mammalian orthoreoviruses (reoviruses) are highly tractable experimental models for studies of double-stranded (ds) RNA virus replication and pathogenesis. Reoviruses infect respiratory and intestinal epithelium and disseminate systemically in newborn animals. Until now, a strategy to rescue infectious virus from cloned cDNA has not been available for any member of the Reoviridae family of dsRNA viruses. We report the generation of viable reovirus following plasmid transfection of murine L929 (L) cells using a strategy free of helper virus and independent of selection. We used the reovirus reverse genetics system to introduce mutations into viral capsid proteins sigma1 and sigma3 and to rescue a virus that expresses a green fluorescent protein (GFP) transgene, thus demonstrating the tractability of this technology. The plasmid-based reverse genetics approach described here can be exploited for studies of reovirus replication and pathogenesis and used to develop reovirus as a vaccine vector. PMID:18005692

  2. Applications of Population Genetics to Animal Breeding, from Wright, Fisher and Lush to Genomic Prediction

    PubMed Central

    Hill, William G.

    2014-01-01

    Although animal breeding was practiced long before the science of genetics and the relevant disciplines of population and quantitative genetics were known, breeding programs have mainly relied on simply selecting and mating the best individuals on their own or relatives’ performance. This is based on sound quantitative genetic principles, developed and expounded by Lush, who attributed much of his understanding to Wright, and formalized in Fisher’s infinitesimal model. Analysis at the level of individual loci and gene frequency distributions has had relatively little impact. Now with access to genomic data, a revolution in which molecular information is being used to enhance response with “genomic selection” is occurring. The predictions of breeding value still utilize multiple loci throughout the genome and, indeed, are largely compatible with additive and specifically infinitesimal model assumptions. I discuss some of the history and genetic issues as applied to the science of livestock improvement, which has had and continues to have major spin-offs into ideas and applications in other areas. PMID:24395822

  3. Distributed Classifier Based on Genetically Engineered Bacterial Cell Cultures

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    We describe a conceptual design of a distributed classifier formed by a population of genetically engineered microbial cells. The central idea is to create a complex classifier from a population of weak or simple classifiers. We create a master population of cells with randomized synthetic biosensor circuits that have a broad range of sensitivities toward chemical signals of interest that form the input vectors subject to classification. The randomized sensitivities are achieved by constructing a library of synthetic gene circuits with randomized control sequences (e.g., ribosome-binding sites) in the front element. The training procedure consists in reshaping of the master population in such a way that it collectively responds to the “positive” patterns of input signals by producing above-threshold output (e.g., fluorescent signal), and below-threshold output in case of the “negative” patterns. The population reshaping is achieved by presenting sequential examples and pruning the population using either graded selection/counterselection or by fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS). We demonstrate the feasibility of experimental implementation of such system computationally using a realistic model of the synthetic sensing gene circuits. PMID:25349924

  4. Genetic engineering in Cowpea (Vigna unguiculata): history, status and prospects.

    PubMed

    Citadin, Cristiane T; Ibrahim, Abdulrazak B; Arago, Francisco J L

    2011-01-01

    In the last three decades, a number of attempts have been made to develop reproducible protocols for generating transgenic cowpea that permit the expression of genes of agronomic importance. Pioneer works focused on the development of such systems vis--vis an in vitro culture system that would guarantee de novo regeneration of transgenic cowpea arising from cells amenable to one form of gene delivery system or another, but any such system has eluded researchers over the years. Despite this apparent failure, significant progress has been made in generating transgenic cowpea, bringing researchers much nearer to their goal than thirty years ago. Now, various researchers have successfully established transgenic procedures for cowpea with evidence of inherent transgenes of interest, effected by progenies in a Mendelian fashion. New opportunities have thus emerged to optimize existing protocols and devise new strategies to ensure the development of transgenic cowpea with desirable agronomic traits. This review chronicles the important milestones in the last thirty years that have marked the evolution of genetic engineering of cowpea. It also highlights the progress made and describes new strategies that have arisen, culminating in the current status of transgenic technologies for cowpea. PMID:22179190

  5. Endogenous allergens in the regulatory assessment of genetically engineered crops.

    PubMed

    Graf, Lynda; Hayder, Hikmat; Mueller, Utz

    2014-11-01

    A scientific approach to the assessment of foods derived from genetically engineered (GE) crops is critical to maintaining objectivity and public confidence in regulatory decisions. Principles developed at the international level support regulators and enable robust and transparent safety assessments. A comparison of key constituents in the GE crop with a suitable comparator is an important element of an assessment. In Europe, endogenous allergens would be included in the comparative analysis, however this approach has been hindered by technical limitations on the ability to accurately measure identified allergenic proteins. Over recent years, improved proteomic methods have enabled researchers to focus on major allergenic proteins in conventional food crops, as information on natural variability is largely lacking. Emerging data for soybean indicate that variability in levels of major allergens already in the food supply is broad. This raises questions about the biological interpretation of differences between a GE plant and its conventional counterpart, in particular, whether any conclusions about altered allergenicity could be inferred. This paper discusses the scientific justification for requiring proteomic analysis of endogenous allergens as part of the evaluation. Ongoing scientific review and corresponding international discussion are integral to ensuring that data requirements address legitimate risk assessment questions. PMID:25128445

  6. Genetic engineering of yellow betalain pigments beyond the species barrier.

    PubMed

    Nakatsuka, Takashi; Yamada, Eri; Takahashi, Hideyuki; Imamura, Tomohiro; Suzuki, Mariko; Ozeki, Yoshihiro; Tsujimura, Ikuko; Saito, Misa; Sakamoto, Yuichi; Sasaki, Nobuhiro; Nishihara, Masahiro

    2013-01-01

    Betalains are one of the major plant pigment groups found in some higher plants and higher fungi. They are not produced naturally in any plant species outside of the order Caryophyllales, nor are they produced by anthocyanin-accumulating Caryophyllales. Here, we attempted to reconstruct the betalain biosynthetic pathway as a self-contained system in an anthocyanin-producing plant species. The combined expressions of a tyrosinase gene from shiitake mushroom and a DOPA 4,5-dioxygenase gene from the four-o'clock plant resulted in successful betalain production in cultured cells of tobacco BY2 and Arabidopsis T87. Transgenic tobacco BY2 cells were bright yellow because of the accumulation of betaxanthins. LC-TOF-MS analyses showed that proline-betaxanthin (Pro-Bx) accumulated as the major betaxanthin in these transgenic BY2 cells. Transgenic Arabidopsis T87 cells also produced betaxanthins, but produced lower levels than transgenic BY2 cells. These results illustrate the success of a novel genetic engineering strategy for betalain biosynthesis. PMID:23760173

  7. Production and characterization of genetically engineered antibody molecules.

    PubMed

    Morrison, S L; Canfield, S; Porter, S; Tan, L K; Tao, M H; Wims, L A

    1988-09-01

    Expression of antibody heavy- and light-chain genes by transfection permits the production of monoclonal antibodies with improved biological and antigen-binding properties. The immunoglobulin genes are placed in vectors containing a gene for encoding a protein that provides a biochemically selectable function in eukaryotic cells; these vectors are transfected into myeloma and hybridoma cells. Selection of drug-resistant cells permits the efficient isolation of the rare cells that express the transfected DNA. By placing heavy and light chains on plasmids with different selectable markers, one can deliver heavy- and light-chain genes simultaneously to the same cell. The transfected immunoglobulin genes are efficiently expressed and the proteins produced are a faithful mirror of the genes that were introduced. Using the standard techniques of genetic engineering and gene transfection, we can now produce antibodies of widely varying structures, including chimeric antibodies with segments derived from different species. These antibodies provide useful reagents to study structure-function relationships within the antibody molecule. Ultimately it will be possible to produce a new generation of antibody molecules with improved antigen-binding properties and effector functions. PMID:3138036

  8. Distributed classifier based on genetically engineered bacterial cell cultures.

    PubMed

    Didovyk, Andriy; Kanakov, Oleg I; Ivanchenko, Mikhail V; Hasty, Jeff; Huerta, Ramn; Tsimring, Lev

    2015-01-16

    We describe a conceptual design of a distributed classifier formed by a population of genetically engineered microbial cells. The central idea is to create a complex classifier from a population of weak or simple classifiers. We create a master population of cells with randomized synthetic biosensor circuits that have a broad range of sensitivities toward chemical signals of interest that form the input vectors subject to classification. The randomized sensitivities are achieved by constructing a library of synthetic gene circuits with randomized control sequences (e.g., ribosome-binding sites) in the front element. The training procedure consists in reshaping of the master population in such a way that it collectively responds to the "positive" patterns of input signals by producing above-threshold output (e.g., fluorescent signal), and below-threshold output in case of the "negative" patterns. The population reshaping is achieved by presenting sequential examples and pruning the population using either graded selection/counterselection or by fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS). We demonstrate the feasibility of experimental implementation of such system computationally using a realistic model of the synthetic sensing gene circuits. PMID:25349924

  9. Genetic engineering of yellow betalain pigments beyond the species barrier

    PubMed Central

    Nakatsuka, Takashi; Yamada, Eri; Takahashi, Hideyuki; Imamura, Tomohiro; Suzuki, Mariko; Ozeki, Yoshihiro; Tsujimura, Ikuko; Saito, Misa; Sakamoto, Yuichi; Sasaki, Nobuhiro; Nishihara, Masahiro

    2013-01-01

    Betalains are one of the major plant pigment groups found in some higher plants and higher fungi. They are not produced naturally in any plant species outside of the order Caryophyllales, nor are they produced by anthocyanin-accumulating Caryophyllales. Here, we attempted to reconstruct the betalain biosynthetic pathway as a self-contained system in an anthocyanin-producing plant species. The combined expressions of a tyrosinase gene from shiitake mushroom and a DOPA 4,5-dioxygenase gene from the four-o'clock plant resulted in successful betalain production in cultured cells of tobacco BY2 and Arabidopsis T87. Transgenic tobacco BY2 cells were bright yellow because of the accumulation of betaxanthins. LC-TOF-MS analyses showed that proline-betaxanthin (Pro-Bx) accumulated as the major betaxanthin in these transgenic BY2 cells. Transgenic Arabidopsis T87 cells also produced betaxanthins, but produced lower levels than transgenic BY2 cells. These results illustrate the success of a novel genetic engineering strategy for betalain biosynthesis. PMID:23760173

  10. Genetically engineered protein in hydrogels tailors stimuli-responsive characteristics.

    PubMed

    Ehrick, Jason D; Deo, Sapna K; Browning, Tyler W; Bachas, Leonidas G; Madou, Marc J; Daunert, Sylvia

    2005-04-01

    Certain proteins undergo a substantial conformational change in response to a given stimulus. This conformational change can manifest in different manners and result in an actuation, that is, catalytic or signalling event, movement, interaction with other proteins, and so on. In all cases, the sensing-actuation process of proteins is initiated by a recognition event that translates into a mechanical action. Thus, proteins are ideal components for designing new nanomaterials that are intelligent and can perform desired mechanical actions in response to target stimuli. A number of approaches have been undertaken to mimic nature's sensing-actuating process. We now report a new hybrid material that integrates genetically engineered proteins within hydrogels capable of producing a stimulus-responsive action mechanism. The mechanical effect is a result of an induced conformational change and binding affinities of the protein in response to a stimulus. The stimuli-responsive hydrogel exhibits three specific swelling stages in response to various ligands offering additional fine-tuned control over a conventional two-stage swelling hydrogel. The newly prepared material was used in the sensing, and subsequent gating and transport of biomolecules across a polymer network, demonstrating its potential application in microfluidics and miniaturized drug-delivery systems. PMID:15765106

  11. Genetically engineered microorganisms for the detection of explosives’ residues

    PubMed Central

    Shemer, Benjamin; Palevsky, Noa; Yagur-Kroll, Sharon; Belkin, Shimshon

    2015-01-01

    The manufacture and use of explosives throughout the past century has resulted in the extensive pollution of soils and groundwater, and the widespread interment of landmines imposes a major humanitarian risk and prevents civil development of large areas. As most current landmine detection technologies require actual presence at the surveyed areas, thus posing a significant risk to personnel, diverse research efforts are aimed at the development of remote detection solutions. One possible means proposed to fulfill this objective is the use of microbial bioreporters: genetically engineered microorganisms “tailored” to generate an optical signal in the presence of explosives’ vapors. The use of such sensor bacteria will allow to pinpoint the locations of explosive devices in a minefield. While no study has yet resulted in a commercially operational system, significant progress has been made in the design and construction of explosives-sensing bacterial strains. In this article we review the attempts to construct microbial bioreporters for the detection of explosives, and analyze the steps that need to be undertaken for this strategy to be applicable for landmine detection. PMID:26579085

  12. Genetically engineered microorganisms for the detection of explosives' residues.

    PubMed

    Shemer, Benjamin; Palevsky, Noa; Yagur-Kroll, Sharon; Belkin, Shimshon

    2015-01-01

    The manufacture and use of explosives throughout the past century has resulted in the extensive pollution of soils and groundwater, and the widespread interment of landmines imposes a major humanitarian risk and prevents civil development of large areas. As most current landmine detection technologies require actual presence at the surveyed areas, thus posing a significant risk to personnel, diverse research efforts are aimed at the development of remote detection solutions. One possible means proposed to fulfill this objective is the use of microbial bioreporters: genetically engineered microorganisms "tailored" to generate an optical signal in the presence of explosives' vapors. The use of such sensor bacteria will allow to pinpoint the locations of explosive devices in a minefield. While no study has yet resulted in a commercially operational system, significant progress has been made in the design and construction of explosives-sensing bacterial strains. In this article we review the attempts to construct microbial bioreporters for the detection of explosives, and analyze the steps that need to be undertaken for this strategy to be applicable for landmine detection. PMID:26579085

  13. A 3D character animation engine for multimodal interaction on mobile devices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sandali, Enrico; Lavagetto, Fabio; Pisano, Paolo

    2005-03-01

    Talking virtual characters are graphical simulations of real or imaginary persons that enable natural and pleasant multimodal interaction with the user, by means of voice, eye gaze, facial expression and gestures. This paper presents an implementation of a 3D virtual character animation and rendering engine, compliant with the MPEG-4 standard, running on Symbian-based SmartPhones. Real-time animation of virtual characters on mobile devices represents a challenging task, since many limitations must be taken into account with respect to processing power, graphics capabilities, disk space and execution memory size. The proposed optimization techniques allow to overcome these issues, guaranteeing a smooth and synchronous animation of facial expressions and lip movements on mobile phones such as Sony-Ericsson's P800 and Nokia's 6600. The animation engine is specifically targeted to the development of new "Over The Air" services, based on embodied conversational agents, with applications in entertainment (interactive story tellers), navigation aid (virtual guides to web sites and mobile services), news casting (virtual newscasters) and education (interactive virtual teachers).

  14. Stochastic signaling in biochemical cascades and genetic systems in genetically engineered living cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Daniel, Ramiz; Almog, Ronen; Shacham-Diamand, Yosi

    2010-04-01

    Living cells, either prokaryote or eukaryote, can be integrated within whole-cell biochips (WCBCs) for various applications. We investigate WCBCs where information is extracted from the cells via a cascade of biochemical reactions that involve gene expression. The overall biological signal is weak due to small sample volume, low intrinsic cell response, and extrinsic signal loss mechanisms. The low signal-to-noise ratio problem is aggravated during initial detection stages and limits the minimum detectable signal or, alternatively, the minimum detection time. Taking into account the stochastic nature of biochemical process, we find that the signal is accompanied by relatively large noise disturbances. In this work, we use genetically engineered microbe sensors as a model to study the biochips output signal stochastic behavior. In our model, the microbes are designed to express detectable reporter proteins under external induction. We present analytical approximated expressions and numerical simulations evaluating the fluctuations of the synthesized reporter proteins population based on a set of equations modeling a cascade of biochemical and genetic reactions. We assume that the reporter proteins decay more slowly than messenger RNA molecules. We calculate the relation between the noise of the input signal (extrinsic noise) and biochemical reaction statistics (intrinsic noise). We discuss in further details two cases: (1) a cascade with large decay rates of all biochemical reactions compared to the protein decay rate. We show that in this case, the noise amplitude has a positive linear correlation with the number of stages in the cascade. (2) A cascade which includes a stable enzymatic-binding reaction with slow decay rate. We show that in this case, the noise strongly depends on the protein decay rate. Finally, a general observation is presented stating that the noise in whole-cell biochip sensors is determined mainly by the first reactions in the genetic system with weak dependence on the number of stages in the cascade.

  15. A comparative analysis of insertional effects in genetically engineered plants: considerations for pre-market assessments.

    PubMed

    Schnell, Jaimie; Steele, Marina; Bean, Jordan; Neuspiel, Margaret; Girard, Ccile; Dormann, Nataliya; Pearson, Cindy; Savoie, Annie; Bourbonnire, Luc; Macdonald, Philip

    2015-02-01

    During genetic engineering, DNA is inserted into a plant's genome, and such insertions are often accompanied by the insertion of additional DNA, deletions and/or rearrangements. These genetic changes are collectively known as insertional effects, and they have the potential to give rise to unintended traits in plants. In addition, there are many other genetic changes that occur in plants both spontaneously and as a result of conventional breeding practices. Genetic changes similar to insertional effects occur in plants, namely as a result of the movement of transposable elements, the repair of double-strand breaks by non-homologous end-joining, and the intracellular transfer of organelle DNA. Based on this similarity, insertional effects should present a similar level of risk as these other genetic changes in plants, and it is within the context of these genetic changes that insertional effects must be considered. Increased familiarity with genetic engineering techniques and advances in molecular analysis techniques have provided us with a greater understanding of the nature and impact of genetic changes in plants, and this can be used to refine pre-market assessments of genetically engineered plants and food and feeds derived from genetically engineered plants. PMID:25344849

  16. Animal board invited review: genetic possibilities to reduce enteric methane emissions from ruminants.

    PubMed

    Pickering, N K; Oddy, V H; Basarab, J; Cammack, K; Hayes, B; Hegarty, R S; Lassen, J; McEwan, J C; Miller, S; Pinares-Patio, C S; de Haas, Y

    2015-09-01

    Measuring and mitigating methane (CH4) emissions from livestock is of increasing importance for the environment and for policy making. Potentially, the most sustainable way of reducing enteric CH4 emission from ruminants is through the estimation of genomic breeding values to facilitate genetic selection. There is potential for adopting genetic selection and in the future genomic selection, for reduced CH4 emissions from ruminants. From this review it has been observed that both CH4 emissions and production (g/day) are a heritable and repeatable trait. CH4 emissions are strongly related to feed intake both in the short term (minutes to several hours) and over the medium term (days). When measured over the medium term, CH4 yield (MY, g CH4/kg dry matter intake) is a heritable and repeatable trait albeit with less genetic variation than for CH4 emissions. CH4 emissions of individual animals are moderately repeatable across diets, and across feeding levels, when measured in respiration chambers. Repeatability is lower when short term measurements are used, possibly due to variation in time and amount of feed ingested prior to the measurement. However, while repeated measurements add value; it is preferable the measures be separated by at least 3 to 14 days. This temporal separation of measurements needs to be investigated further. Given the above issue can be resolved, short term (over minutes to hours) measurements of CH4 emissions show promise, especially on systems where animals are fed ad libitum and frequency of meals is high. However, we believe that for short-term measurements to be useful for genetic evaluation, a number (between 3 and 20) of measurements will be required over an extended period of time (weeks to months). There are opportunities for using short-term measurements in standardised feeding situations such as breath 'sniffers' attached to milking parlours or total mixed ration feeding bins, to measure CH4. Genomic selection has the potential to reduce both CH4 emissions and MY, but measurements on thousands of individuals will be required. This includes the need for combined resources across countries in an international effort, emphasising the need to acknowledge the impact of animal and production systems on measurement of the CH4 trait during design of experiments. PMID:26055577

  17. Genetically engineered mouse models of human B-cell precursor leukemias

    PubMed Central

    Hauer, Julia; Borkhardt, Arndt; Snchez-Garca, Isidro; Cobaleda, Csar

    2014-01-01

    B-cell precursor acute lymphoblastic leukemias (pB-ALLs) are the most frequent type of malignancies of the childhood, and also affect an important proportion of adult patients. In spite of their apparent homogeneity, pB-ALL comprises a group of diseases very different both clinically and pathologically, and with very diverse outcomes as a consequence of their biology, and underlying molecular alterations. Their understanding (as a prerequisite for their cure) will require a sustained multidisciplinary effort from professionals coming from many different fields. Among all the available tools for pB-ALL research, the use of animal models stands, as of today, as the most powerful approach, not only for the understanding of the origin and evolution of the disease, but also for the development of new therapies. In this review we go over the most relevant (historically, technically or biologically) genetically engineered mouse models (GEMMs) of human pB-ALLs that have been generated over the last 20 years. Our final aim is to outline the most relevant guidelines that should be followed to generate an ideal animal model that could become a standard for the study of human pB-ALL leukemia, and which could be shared among research groups and drug development companies in order to unify criteria for studies like drug testing, analysis of the influence of environmental risk factors, or studying the role of both low-penetrance mutations and cancer susceptibility alterations. PMID:25486471

  18. [Advances in research on lignin biosynthesis and its genetic engineering].

    PubMed

    Zhao, Hua-Yan; Wei, Jian-Hua; Song, Yan-Ru

    2004-08-01

    Lignin, one of the main components in vascular plants, is important for the adaptation of terrestrial plants to environment during evolution. However, its presence in plants has negative effects on wood processing during pulping and stock breeding. Therefore much attention has been focused on the regulation of lignin biosynthesis. The pathways leading to the synthesis of lignin polymers have been studied for decades. Much understanding of lignin biosynthesis has been advanced. This paper reviewed the recent progress made in the various steps associated with monolignol biosynthesis. It includes the catalysis by three enzymes, i.e. p-coumarate-3-hydroxylase (C3H), ferulate-5-hydroxylase (F5H) and caffeic acid 3-O-methyltransferase (COMT); the multiform biosynthetic pathway of syringyl (S) lignin in angiosperms; the biosynthesis route of guaiacyl (G) and syringyl (S) lignin specifically regulated by cinnamyl alcohol dehydrogenase (CAD) and sinapyl alcohol dehydrogenase (SAD) and the formation of the lignin macromolecule. Based on the elucidation of lignin biosynthesis pathway, it has also been given the achievements in lignin gene engineering. Many studies were concentrated on the modification of lignin content and composition. In some cases, the potential value of transgenic plants with modified lignin beneficial for pulping has been demonstrated. To better understand the mechanism of lignin biosynthesis and improve the properties of plants, new biotechnological strategies can be developed, which include combinatorial modification of multiple lignin traits in plants through multigene cotransformation, transcriptional control of lignin biosynthesis and the application of RNA interference. The identification of novel genes by molecular and genetic approaches will be useful in opening up new avenues of lignin modification in the future. PMID:15627683

  19. Genetically engineered ER?-positive breast cancer mouse models.

    PubMed

    Dabydeen, Sarah A; Furth, Priscilla A

    2014-06-01

    The majority of human breast cancers are estrogen receptor-positive (ER+), but this has proven challenging to model in genetically engineered mice. This review summarizes information on 21 mouse models that develop ER+ mammary cancer. Where available, information on cancer pathology and gene expression profiles is referenced to assist in understanding which histological subtype of ER+ human cancer each model might represent. ESR1, CCDN1, prolactin, TGF?, AIB1, ESPL1, and WNT1 overexpression, PIK3CA gain of function, as well as loss of P53 (Trp53) or STAT1 are associated with ER+ mammary cancer. Treatment with the PPAR? agonist efatutazone in a mouse with Brca1 and p53 deficiency and 7,12-dimethylbenz(a)anthracene exposure in combination with an activated myristoylated form of AKT1 also induce ER+ mammary cancer. A spontaneous mutant in nude mice that develops metastatic ER+ mammary cancer is included. Age of cancer development ranges from 3 to 26 months and the percentage of cancers that are ER+ vary from 21 to 100%. Not all models are characterized as to their estrogen dependency and/or response to anti-hormonal therapy. Strain backgrounds include C57Bl/6, FVB, BALB/c, 129S6/SvEv, CB6F1, and NIH nude. Most models have only been studied on one strain background. In summary, while a range of models are available for studies of pathogenesis and therapy of ER+ breast cancers, many could benefit from further characterization, and opportunity for development of new models remains. PMID:24481326

  20. Human, food and animal Campylobacter spp. isolated in Portugal: high genetic diversity and antibiotic resistance rates.

    PubMed

    Duarte, Andreia; Santos, Andrea; Manageiro, Vera; Martins, Ana; Fraqueza, Maria J; Caniça, Manuela; Domingues, Fernanda C; Oleastro, Mónica

    2014-10-01

    Infections by Campylobacter jejuni and Campylobacter coli are considered the major cause of bacterial gastroenteritis in humans, with food being the main source of infection. In this study, a total of 196 Campylobacter strains (125 isolates from humans, 39 from retail food and 32 from food animal sources) isolated in Portugal between 2009 and 2012 were characterised by multilocus sequence typing (MLST) and flaA short variable region (SVR) typing. Susceptibility to six antibiotics as well as the mechanisms underlying antibiotic resistance phenotypes was also studied. Based on MLST typing, C. coli strains were genetically more conserved, with a predominant clonal complex (CC828), than C. jejuni strains. In contrast, C. coli isolates were genetically more variable than C. jejuni with regard to flaA-SVR typing. A high rate of resistance was observed for quinolones (100% to nalidixic acid, >90% to ciprofloxacin) and, in general, resistance was more common among C. coli, especially for erythromycin (40.2% vs. 6.7%). In addition, most isolates (86%) were resistant to multiple antimicrobial families. Besides the expected point mutations associated with antibiotic resistance, detected polymorphisms in the cmeABC locus likely play a role in the multiresistant phenotype. This study provides for the first time an overview of the genetic diversity of Campylobacter strains from Portugal. It also shows a worrying antibiotic multiresistance rate and the emergence of Campylobacter strains resistant to antibiotics of human use. PMID:25130097

  1. Murine genetically engineered and human xenograft models of chronic lymphocytic leukemia.

    PubMed

    Chen, Shih-Shih; Chiorazzi, Nicholas

    2014-07-01

    Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) is a genetically complex disease, with multiple factors having an impact on onset, progression, and response to therapy. Genetic differences/abnormalities have been found in hematopoietic stem cells from patients, as well as in B lymphocytes of individuals with monoclonal B-cell lymphocytosis who may develop the disease. Furthermore, after the onset of CLL, additional genetic alterations occur over time, often causing disease worsening and altering patient outcomes. Therefore, being able to genetically engineer mouse models that mimic CLL or at least certain aspects of the disease will help us understand disease mechanisms and improve treatments. This notwithstanding, because neither the genetic aberrations responsible for leukemogenesis and progression nor the promoting factors that support these are likely identical in character or influences for all patients, genetically engineered mouse models will only completely mimic CLL when all of these factors are precisely defined. In addition, multiple genetically engineered models may be required because of the heterogeneity in susceptibility genes among patients that can have an effect on genetic and environmental characteristics influencing disease development and outcome. For these reasons, we review the major murine genetically engineered and human xenograft models in use at the present time, aiming to report the advantages and disadvantages of each. PMID:25048783

  2. A Knockout Experiment: Disciplinary Divides and Experimental Skill in Animal Behaviour Genetics.

    PubMed

    Nelson, Nicole C

    2015-07-01

    In the early 1990s, a set of new techniques for manipulating mouse DNA allowed researchers to 'knock out' specific genes and observe the effects of removing them on a live mouse. In animal behaviour genetics, questions about how to deploy these techniques to study the molecular basis of behaviour became quite controversial, with a number of key methodological issues dissecting the interdisciplinary research field along disciplinary lines. This paper examines debates that took place during the 1990s between a predominately North American group of molecular biologists and animal behaviourists around how to design, conduct, and interpret behavioural knockout experiments. Drawing from and extending Harry Collins's work on how research communities negotiate what counts as a 'well-done experiment,' I argue that the positions practitioners took on questions of experimental skill reflected not only the experimental traditions they were trained in but also their differing ontological and epistemological commitments. Different assumptions about the nature of gene action, eg., were tied to different positions in the knockout mouse debates on how to implement experimental controls. I conclude by showing that examining representations of skill in the context of a community's knowledge commitments sheds light on some of the contradictory ways in which contemporary animal behaviour geneticists talk about their own laboratory work as a highly skilled endeavour that also could be mechanised, as easy to perform and yet difficult to perform well. PMID:26090739

  3. A Knockout Experiment: Disciplinary Divides and Experimental Skill in Animal Behaviour Genetics

    PubMed Central

    Nelson, Nicole C.

    2015-01-01

    In the early 1990s, a set of new techniques for manipulating mouse DNA allowed researchers to ‘knock out’ specific genes and observe the effects of removing them on a live mouse. In animal behaviour genetics, questions about how to deploy these techniques to study the molecular basis of behaviour became quite controversial, with a number of key methodological issues dissecting the interdisciplinary research field along disciplinary lines. This paper examines debates that took place during the 1990s between a predominately North American group of molecular biologists and animal behaviourists around how to design, conduct, and interpret behavioural knockout experiments. Drawing from and extending Harry Collins’s work on how research communities negotiate what counts as a ‘well-done experiment,’ I argue that the positions practitioners took on questions of experimental skill reflected not only the experimental traditions they were trained in but also their differing ontological and epistemological commitments. Different assumptions about the nature of gene action, eg., were tied to different positions in the knockout mouse debates on how to implement experimental controls. I conclude by showing that examining representations of skill in the context of a community’s knowledge commitments sheds light on some of the contradictory ways in which contemporary animal behaviour geneticists talk about their own laboratory work as a highly skilled endeavour that also could be mechanised, as easy to perform and yet difficult to perform well. PMID:26090739

  4. USE OF A NOVEL PLASMID TO MONITOR THE FATE OF A GENETICALLY ENGINEERED PSEUDOMONAS PUTIDA STRAIN

    EPA Science Inventory

    Plasmid pSI30 was constructed to increase the sensitivity of detection of a genetically engineered microorganism (GEM) and its recombinant DNA in environmental samples. his broad host-range, mobilizable plasmid contained chlorocatechol (clc) degradative genes, antibiotic resistan...

  5. The establishment of genetically engineered canola populations in the U.S.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Concerns regarding the commercial release of genetically engineered (GE) crops include naturalization, introgression to sexually compatible relatives and the transfer of beneficial traits to native and weedy species through hybridization. To date there have been few documented re...

  6. SURVIVAL DIFFERENCES AMONG FREEZE-DRIED GENETICALLY ENGINEERED AND WILD-TYPE BACTERIA

    EPA Science Inventory

    Spray application is often used to introduce genetically engineered microorganisms into the environment. he risk associated with the downwind transport and survival necessitates development of tools to assess the risk associated with their airborne transport. ecause the death mec...

  7. Gene flow in genetically engineered perennial grasses: Lessons for modification of dedicated bioenergy crops

    EPA Science Inventory

    The potential ecological consequences of the commercialization of genetically engineered (GD) crops have been the subject of intense debate, particularly when the GE crops are perennial and capable of outcrossing to wild relatives. The essential ecological impact issues for engi...

  8. Mutational breeding and genetic engineering in the development of high grain protein content.

    PubMed

    Wenefrida, Ida; Utomo, Herry S; Linscombe, Steve D

    2013-12-01

    Cereals are the most important crops in the world for both human consumption and animal feed. Improving their nutritional values, such as high protein content, will have significant implications, from establishing healthy lifestyles to helping remediate malnutrition problems worldwide. Besides providing a source of carbohydrate, grain is also a natural source of dietary fiber, vitamins, minerals, specific oils, and other disease-fighting phytocompounds. Even though cereal grains contain relatively little protein compared to legume seeds, they provide protein for the nutrition of humans and livestock that is about 3 times that of legumes. Most cereal seeds lack a few essential amino acids; therefore, they have imbalanced amino acid profiles. Lysine (Lys), threonine (Thr), methionine (Met), and tryptophan (Trp) are among the most critical and are a limiting factor in many grain crops for human nutrition. Tremendous research has been put into the efforts to improve these essential amino acids. Development of high protein content can be outlined in four different approaches through manipulating seed protein bodies, modulating certain biosynthetic pathways to overproduce essential and limiting amino acids, increasing nitrogen relocation to the grain through the introduction of transgenes, and exploiting new genetic variance. Various technologies have been employed to improve protein content including conventional and mutational breeding, genetic engineering, marker-assisted selection, and genomic analysis. Each approach involves a combination of these technologies. Advancements in nutrigenomics and nutrigenetics continue to improve public knowledge at a rapid pace on the importance of specific aspects of food nutrition for optimum fitness and health. An understanding of the molecular basis for human health and genetic predisposition to certain diseases through human genomes enables individuals to personalize their nutritional requirements. It is critically important, therefore, to improve grain protein quality. Highly nutritious grain can be tailored to functional foods to meet the needs for both specific individuals and human populations as a whole. PMID:23869957

  9. N-acetylcysteineamide (NACA) prevents inflammation and oxidative stress in animals exposed to diesel engine exhaust.

    PubMed

    Banerjee, Atrayee; Trueblood, Max B; Zhang, Xinsheng; Manda, Kalyan Reddy; Lobo, Prem; Whitefield, Philip D; Hagen, Donald E; Ercal, Nuran

    2009-06-22

    Diesel exhaust particles (DEPs), a by-product of diesel engine exhaust (DEE), are one of the major components of air borne particulate matter (PM) in the urban environment. DEPs are composed of soot, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), redox active semi-quinones, and transition metals, which are known to produce pro-oxidative and pro-inflammatory effects, thereby leading to oxidative stress-induced damage in the lungs. The objective of this study was to determine if N-acetylcysteineamide (NACA), a novel thiol antioxidant, confers protection to animals exposed to DEPs from oxidative stress-induced damage to the lung. To study this, male C57BL/6 mice, pretreated with either NACA (250mg/kg body weight) or saline, were exposed to DEPs (15mg/m(3)) or filtered air (1.5-3h/day) for nine consecutive days. The animals were sacrificed 24h after the last exposure. NACA-treated animals exposed to DEP had significant decreases in the number of macrophages and the amount of mucus plug formation in the lungs, as compared to the DEP-only exposed animals. In addition, DEP-exposed animals, pretreated with NACA, also experienced significantly lower oxidative stress than the untreated group, as indicated by the glutathione (GSH), and malondialdehyde (MDA) levels and catalase (CAT) activity. Further, DEP-induced toxicity in the lungs was reversed in NACA-treated animals, as indicated by the lactate dehydrogenase levels. Taken together, these data suggest that the thiol-antioxidant, NACA, can protect the lungs from DEP-induced inflammation and oxidative stress related damage. PMID:19429263

  10. Genetic engineering of Ganoderma lucidum for the efficient production of ganoderic acids.

    PubMed

    Xu, Jun-Wei; Zhong, Jian-Jiang

    2015-11-01

    Ganoderma lucidum is a well-known traditional medicinal mushroom that produces ganoderic acids with numerous interesting bioactivities. Genetic engineering is an efficient approach to improve ganoderic acid biosynthesis. However, reliable genetic transformation methods and appropriate genetic manipulation strategies remain underdeveloped and thus should be enhanced. We previously established a homologous genetic transformation method for G. lucidum; we also applied the established method to perform the deregulated overexpression of a homologous 3-hydroxy-3-methyl-glutaryl coenzyme A reductase gene in G. lucidum. Engineered strains accumulated more ganoderic acids than wild-type strains. In this report, the genetic transformation systems of G. lucidum are described; current trends are also presented to improve ganoderic acid production through the genetic manipulation of G. lucidum. PMID:26588475

  11. Spontaneous bacterial and fungal infections in genetically engineered mice: Is Escherichia coli an emerging pathogen in laboratory mouse?

    PubMed

    Benga, Laurentiu; Benten, W Peter M; Engelhardt, Eva; Gougoula, Christina; Sager, Martin

    2015-01-01

    The impact of particular microbes on genetically engineered mice depends on the genotype and the environment. Infections resulting in clinical disease have an obvious impact on animal welfare and experimentation. In this study, we investigated the bacterial and fungal aetiology of spontaneous clinical disease of infectious origin among the genetically engineered mice from our institution in relation to their genotype. A total of 63 mice belonging to 33 different mice strains, from severe immunodeficient to wild-type, were found to display infections as the primary cause leading to their euthanasia. The necropsies revealed abscesses localized subcutaneously as well as in the kidney, preputial glands, seminal vesicles, in the uterus, umbilicus or in the lung. In addition, pneumonia, endometritis and septicaemia cases were recorded. Escherichia coli was involved in 21 of 44 (47.72%) of the lesions of bacterial origin, whereas [Pasteurella] pneumotropica was isolated from 19 of 44 (43.18%) cases. The infections with the two agents mentioned above included three cases of mixed infection with both pathogens. Staphylococcus aureus was considered responsible for five of 44 (11.36%) cases whereas Enterobacter cloacae was found to cause lesions in two of 44 (4.54%) mice. Overall, 16 of the 44 (36.36%) cases of bacterial aetiology affected genetically engineered mice without any explicit immunodeficiency or wild-type strains. The remaining 19 cases of interstitial pneumonia were caused by Pneumocystis murina. In conclusion, the susceptibility of genetically modified mice to opportunistic infections has to be regarded with precaution, regardless of the type of genetic modification performed. Beside the classical opportunists, such as [Pasteurella] pneumotropica and Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli should as well be closely monitored to evaluate whether it represents an emerging pathogen in the laboratory mouse. PMID:26281439

  12. From microcarriers to hydrodynamics: introducing engineering science into animal cell culture.

    PubMed

    Croughan, Matthew S; Hu, Wei-Shou

    2006-10-01

    Professor Daniel I.C. Wang has conducted research in animal cell culture for approximately 40 years. Over that long time period and still to this day, he successfully addresses a multitude of engineering challenges, taking a unique, creative, systems-driven but still fundamental approach. As mammalian cell culture has become the predominant method of manufacturing therapeutic proteins, the impact of his leadership, not only in research but also student recruitment and education, has played a key role in the success of the bio/pharmaceutical industry. PMID:16933297

  13. ECOLOGICAL CONSIDERATIONS RELATED TO THE RELEASE OF GENETICALLY ENGINEERED MICROORGANISMS TO THE ENVIRONMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    The results of these studies show that GEMs (Genetically Engineered Microorganisms) have the potential to survive, to transfer their novel genetic information, and to affect some microbe-mediated ecological processes in soil. he magnitude of these phenomena in soil in situ, howev...

  14. Scientific and regulatory challenges of developing a genetically engineered virus resistant plum

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetic engineering (GE) has the potential to revolutionize fruit tree breeding and is an important addition to the fruit breeder’s "toolbox". It is an approach that can specifically target genetic improvements and allow for the development of novel, useful traits. In spite of the potential utilit...

  15. Teaching Applied Genetics and Molecular Biology to Agriculture Engineers. Application of the European Credit Transfer System

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Weiss, J.; Egea-Cortines, M.

    2008-01-01

    We have been teaching applied molecular genetics to engineers and adapted the teaching methodology to the European Credit Transfer System. We teach core principles of genetics that are universal and form the conceptual basis of most molecular technologies. The course then teaches widely used techniques and finally shows how different techniques…

  16. Teaching Applied Genetics and Molecular Biology to Agriculture Engineers. Application of the European Credit Transfer System

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Weiss, J.; Egea-Cortines, M.

    2008-01-01

    We have been teaching applied molecular genetics to engineers and adapted the teaching methodology to the European Credit Transfer System. We teach core principles of genetics that are universal and form the conceptual basis of most molecular technologies. The course then teaches widely used techniques and finally shows how different techniques

  17. Biotechnology, Genetic Engineering and Society. Monograph Series: III.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kieffer, George H.

    New techniques have expanded the field of biotechnology and awarded scientists an unprecedented degree of control over the genetic constitutions of living things. The knowledge of DNA science is the basis for this burgeoning industry which may be a major force in human existence. Just as it is possible to move genetic material from one organism to…

  18. Recent progress in henipavirus research: molecular biology, genetic diversity, animal models.

    PubMed

    Rockx, Barry; Winegar, Richard; Freiberg, Alexander N

    2012-08-01

    Nipah and Hendra virus are members of a newly identified genus of emerging paramyxoviruses, the henipaviruses. Both viruses have the ability to cause severe pulmonary infection and severe acute encephalitis. Following their discovery in the 1990s, outbreaks caused by these zoonotic paramyxoviruses have been associated with high public health and especially economic threat potential. Currently, only geographic groupings in Asia and Australia have been described for the henipaviruses. However, while few viral isolates are available and more detailed characterization is necessary, there has been recent evidence that divergent henipaviruses might be present on the African continent. This review endeavours to capture recent advances in the field of henipavirus research, with a focus on genome structure and replication mechanisms, reservoir hosts, genetic diversity, pathogenesis and animal models. PMID:22643730

  19. Animal models to detect allergenicity to foods and genetically modified products: workshop summary.

    PubMed

    Tryphonas, Helen; Arvanitakis, George; Vavasour, Elizabeth; Bondy, Genevieve

    2003-02-01

    Respiratory allergy and allergy to foods continue to be important health issues. There is evidence to indicate that the incidence of food allergy around the world is on the rise. Current estimates indicate that approximately 5% of young children and 1-2% of adults suffer from true food allergy (Kagan 2003). Although a large number of in vivo and in vitro tests exist for the clinical diagnosis of allergy in humans, we lack validated animal models of allergenicity. This deficiency creates serious problems for regulatory agencies and industries that must define the potential allergenicity of foods before marketing. The emergence of several biotechnologically derived foods and industrial proteins, as well as their potential to sensitize genetically predisposed populations to develop allergy, has prompted health officials and regulatory agencies around the world to seek approaches and methodologies to screen novel proteins for allergenicity. PMID:12573909

  20. On the role of brain serotonin in expression of genetic predisposition to catalepsy in animal models

    SciTech Connect

    Popova, N.K.; Kulikov, A.V.

    1995-06-19

    The activity of the rate-limiting enzyme of serotonin biosynthesis, tryptophan hydroxylase, in the striatum but not in the hippocampus and midbrain of rats bred for predisposition to catalepsy was higher than in nonselected rats. Mice of the highly susceptible to catalepsy CBA strain also differed from other noncataleptic mouse strains by the highest tryptophan hydroxylase activity in the striatum. Inhibition of tryptophan hydroxylase with p-chlorophenylalanine and p-chloromethamphetamine drastically decreased immobility time in hereditary predisposed to catalepsy animals. A decrease in the {sup 3}H-ketanserin specific binding in the striatum of cataleptic rats and CBA mice was found. It was suggested that this decrease in 5-HT2A serotonin receptor density represented a down regulation of the receptors due to an activation of serotonergic transmission in striatum. It is suggested that hereditary catalepsy may be resulted from genetic changes in the regulation of serotonin metabolism in striatum. 32 refs., 6 figs.

  1. The Significance of Content Knowledge for Informal Reasoning regarding Socioscientific Issues: Applying Genetics Knowledge to Genetic Engineering Issues

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sadler, Troy D.; Zeidler, Dana L.

    2005-01-01

    This study focused on informal reasoning regarding socioscientific issues. It sought to explore how content knowledge influenced the negotiation and resolution of contentious and complex scenarios based on genetic engineering. Two hundred and sixty-nine students drawn from undergraduate natural science and nonnatural science courses completed a…

  2. The Significance of Content Knowledge for Informal Reasoning regarding Socioscientific Issues: Applying Genetics Knowledge to Genetic Engineering Issues

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sadler, Troy D.; Zeidler, Dana L.

    2005-01-01

    This study focused on informal reasoning regarding socioscientific issues. It sought to explore how content knowledge influenced the negotiation and resolution of contentious and complex scenarios based on genetic engineering. Two hundred and sixty-nine students drawn from undergraduate natural science and nonnatural science courses completed a

  3. Two different putative genetic animal models of childhood depression--a review.

    PubMed

    Malkesman, O; Weller, A

    2009-07-01

    Estimated prevalence of childhood and adolescent depression varies from 0.4% to 3% at the 0-12 age range and 3.3% to 12.4% at the 13-18 age range. Despite similarities in the clinical picture of major depression in children, adolescents, and adults, there are notable differences in the neurobiological correlates and treatment response of depressed patients in these different age cohorts. In contrast to adults, most depressed children fail to respond to antidepressants. The main aim of this paper is to review several studies which attempt to develop and examine genetic animal models for childhood depression, in order to enable a search for new, unique treatment approaches for depressed children. Two different "depressive-like" rat strains were studied: Flinders Sensitive Line (FSL) and their controls, Sprague-Dawley (SD) rats; and the Wistar Kyoto (WKY) strain and their controls, Wistar rats. The results suggest that prepubertal FSL and WKY rats exhibit different styles of depressive behavior, one co-morbid with "anxiety-like" behavior (WKY), and one that is not (FSL). These two profiles may model clinical characteristics that resemble two subgroups of depressed children. However, in general the data on the WKY rats would seem most consistent with a classic childhood depressive profile. The FSL profile may possibly be related to chronic stress, and its role as a potential model of childhood depression requires further support. These two different putative genetic animal models of childhood depression can help in the attempts to understand the neurobiological basis and to predict successful treatment strategies for different patterns of childhood psychopathology. PMID:19545781

  4. Generating Alternative Engineering Designs by Integrating Desktop VR with Genetic Algorithms

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chandramouli, Magesh; Bertoline, Gary; Connolly, Patrick

    2009-01-01

    This study proposes an innovative solution to the problem of multiobjective engineering design optimization by integrating desktop VR with genetic computing. Although, this study considers the case of construction design as an example to illustrate the framework, this method can very much be extended to other engineering design problems as well.…

  5. Generating Alternative Engineering Designs by Integrating Desktop VR with Genetic Algorithms

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chandramouli, Magesh; Bertoline, Gary; Connolly, Patrick

    2009-01-01

    This study proposes an innovative solution to the problem of multiobjective engineering design optimization by integrating desktop VR with genetic computing. Although, this study considers the case of construction design as an example to illustrate the framework, this method can very much be extended to other engineering design problems as well.

  6. Reward circuitry dysfunction in psychiatric and neurodevelopmental disorders and genetic syndromes: animal models and clinical findings

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    This review summarizes evidence of dysregulated reward circuitry function in a range of neurodevelopmental and psychiatric disorders and genetic syndromes. First, the contribution of identifying a core mechanistic process across disparate disorders to disease classification is discussed, followed by a review of the neurobiology of reward circuitry. We next consider preclinical animal models and clinical evidence of reward-pathway dysfunction in a range of disorders, including psychiatric disorders (i.e., substance-use disorders, affective disorders, eating disorders, and obsessive compulsive disorders), neurodevelopmental disorders (i.e., schizophrenia, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, autism spectrum disorders, Tourette’s syndrome, conduct disorder/oppositional defiant disorder), and genetic syndromes (i.e., Fragile X syndrome, Prader–Willi syndrome, Williams syndrome, Angelman syndrome, and Rett syndrome). We also provide brief overviews of effective psychopharmacologic agents that have an effect on the dopamine system in these disorders. This review concludes with methodological considerations for future research designed to more clearly probe reward-circuitry dysfunction, with the ultimate goal of improved intervention strategies. PMID:22958744

  7. Genetic causes of transitions from sexual reproduction to asexuality in plants and animals.

    PubMed

    Neiman, M; Sharbel, T F; Schwander, T

    2014-07-01

    The persistence of sexual reproduction in the face of competition from asexual invaders is more likely if asexual lineages are produced infrequently or have low fitness. The generation rate and success of new asexual lineages will be influenced by the proximate mechanisms underlying transitions to asexuality. As such, characterization of these mechanisms can help explain the distribution of reproductive modes among natural populations. Here, we synthesize the literature addressing proximate causes of transitions from sexual to asexual reproduction in plants and animals. In cyclical and facultatively asexual taxa, individual mutations can cause obligate asexuality. The evolution of asexuality in obligately sexual groups is more complex, requiring the simultaneous acquisition of two traits generally controlled by different genetic factors: unreduced gamete formation and spontaneous development of unfertilized gametes. At least three 'pre-adaptations' could favour transitions to obligate asexuality in obligate sexuals. First, linkage among loci affecting separate key components of asexuality facilitates its spread, with evidence for these linkage blocks in plants. Second, asexuality should evolve more readily in haplodiploids; support for this hypothesis comes from two examples where a single locus causes transitions to asexuality. Third, standing genetic variation for the production of unreduced gametes could facilitate transitions to asexuality, but whether the ability to produce unreduced gametes contributes to the evolution of obligate asexuality remains unclear. We close by reviewing the associations between asexuality, hybridization and polyploidy, and argue that current data suggest that hybridization is more likely to play a causal role in transitions to asexuality than polyploidy. PMID:24666600

  8. Reward circuitry dysfunction in psychiatric and neurodevelopmental disorders and genetic syndromes: animal models and clinical findings.

    PubMed

    Dichter, Gabriel S; Damiano, Cara A; Allen, John A

    2012-01-01

    This review summarizes evidence of dysregulated reward circuitry function in a range of neurodevelopmental and psychiatric disorders and genetic syndromes. First, the contribution of identifying a core mechanistic process across disparate disorders to disease classification is discussed, followed by a review of the neurobiology of reward circuitry. We next consider preclinical animal models and clinical evidence of reward-pathway dysfunction in a range of disorders, including psychiatric disorders (i.e., substance-use disorders, affective disorders, eating disorders, and obsessive compulsive disorders), neurodevelopmental disorders (i.e., schizophrenia, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, autism spectrum disorders, Tourette's syndrome, conduct disorder/oppositional defiant disorder), and genetic syndromes (i.e., Fragile X syndrome, Prader-Willi syndrome, Williams syndrome, Angelman syndrome, and Rett syndrome). We also provide brief overviews of effective psychopharmacologic agents that have an effect on the dopamine system in these disorders. This review concludes with methodological considerations for future research designed to more clearly probe reward-circuitry dysfunction, with the ultimate goal of improved intervention strategies. PMID:22958744

  9. Applying stereotactic injection technique to study genetic effects on animal behaviors.

    PubMed

    McSweeney, Colleen; Mao, Yingwei

    2015-01-01

    Stereotactic injection is a useful technique to deliver high titer lentiviruses to targeted brain areas in mice. Lentiviruses can either overexpress or knockdown gene expression in a relatively focused region without significant damage to the brain tissue. After recovery, the injected mouse can be tested on various behavioral tasks such as the Open Field Test (OFT) and the Forced Swim Test (FST). The OFT is designed to assess locomotion and the anxious phenotype in mice by measuring the amount of time that a mouse spends in the center of a novel open field. A more anxious mouse will spend significantly less time in the center of the novel field compared to controls. The FST assesses the anti-depressive phenotype by quantifying the amount of time that mice spend immobile when placed into a bucket of water. A mouse with an anti-depressive phenotype will spend significantly less time immobile compared to control animals. The goal of this protocol is to use the stereotactic injection of a lentivirus in conjunction with behavioral tests to assess how genetic factors modulate animal behaviors. PMID:25992973

  10. Wheels, Cranks, and Cams: An Animated Spreadsheet-Based Mathematical Model of a Four-Stroke Engine.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Callender, J. T.; Jackson, R.

    1998-01-01

    Analyzes the mathematics of rotational and translational motion and how one can influence the other in the context of cams and cranks. Describes how the individual components can be brought together to simulate a four-stroke engine and how the engine animates again using the same simple macro. (Author/ASK)

  11. 20 Years of hypertension research using genetically modified animals: no clinically promising approaches in sight.

    PubMed

    Stingl, Lavinia; Vlkel, Manfred; Lindl, Toni

    2009-01-01

    The incidence of essential or primary hypertension is increasing, especially in the northern hemisphere, but although the disease displays clear symptoms, its aetiology appears very complex, and thus no causal treatment is available yet. In the 1990's, genetically modified animals (GMO) were considered to be the key to solving this problem of high complexity. However, until now, although a few approaches have shown that old, well-known drugs have a positive effect (decrease of blood pressure) on such animal models of hypertension, no approach has appeared in the literature of this area of research which might indicate a direct connection between GMO and a therapeutic strategy to treat or prevent this type of hypertension in humans. Instead, criticism of the GMO approach has accumulated in the last years, arguing that it is misleading as this disease does not have a monogenic cause and so complementary regulatory mechanisms could prevent the true identification of the function of the modified genes. Furthermore, the technology is best developed in mice, whose physiology of blood pressure is different from that of humans. Because of species specificity, it is not easy to extrapolate the results from animal models of hypertension to human hypertension. Also, in the years 2000 to 2004 a reorientation of the technology and the aims of this kind of research took place. Therefore, although these approaches are without exception deemed "very promising" in the literature, it cannot be expected that research on GMO will make any contribution to a new therapeutic strategy in the near future. PMID:19326032

  12. Non-Standard Genetic Codes Define New Concepts for Protein Engineering

    PubMed Central

    Bezerra, Ana R.; Guimarães, Ana R.; Santos, Manuel A. S.

    2015-01-01

    The essential feature of the genetic code is the strict one-to-one correspondence between codons and amino acids. The canonical code consists of three stop codons and 61 sense codons that encode 20% of the amino acid repertoire observed in nature. It was originally designated as immutable and universal due to its conservation in most organisms, but sequencing of genes from the human mitochondrial genomes revealed deviations in codon assignments. Since then, alternative codes have been reported in both nuclear and mitochondrial genomes and genetic code engineering has become an important research field. Here, we review the most recent concepts arising from the study of natural non-standard genetic codes with special emphasis on codon re-assignment strategies that are relevant to engineering genetic code in the laboratory. Recent tools for synthetic biology and current attempts to engineer new codes for incorporation of non-standard amino acids are also reviewed in this article. PMID:26569314

  13. Genetic analysis of calving traits by the multi-trait individual animal model.

    PubMed

    Weller, J I; Ezra, E

    2016-01-01

    Five alternative models were applied for analysis of dystocia and stillbirth in first and second parities. Models 1 and 2 were included only to estimate the parameters required for model 4, and models 3 and 5 are included only as comparisons to the model 4 estimates. Variance components were estimated by multi-trait REML, including cows with valid calving records for both parities. For the effects of sire of calf on first and second parities, variance components were estimated including only calvings with the same sire of calf for both parities. All heritabilities for the cow effect were quite low, but higher for dystocia than for stillbirth and higher in first parity. The sire-of-calf heritabilities were higher than the cow effect heritabilities, except for stillbirth in parity 2. Unlike the effect of cow correlations, all sire of calf correlations were >0.6, and the correlations for the same trait in parities 1 and 2 were >0.9. Thus, a multi-trait analysis should yield a significant gain in accuracy with respect to the sire of calf effects for bulls not mated to virgin heifers. A multi-trait individual animal model algorithm was developed for joint analysis of dystocia and stillbirth in first and second parities. Relationships matrices were included both for the effects of cow and sire of calf. In addition, random herd-year-season and fixed sex of calf effects were included in the model. Records were preadjusted for calving month and age. A total of 899,223 Israeli Holstein cows with first calvings since 1985 were included in the complete analysis. Approximate reliabilities were computed for both sire of cow and sire of calf effects. Correlations between these reliabilities and reliabilities obtained by direct inversion of the coefficient matrix for a sire of cow-sire of calf model were all close to 0.99. Phenotypic trends for cows born from 1983 through 2007 were economically unfavorable for dystocia and favorable for stillbirth in both parities. Genetic trends were economically unfavorable for both dystocia and stillbirth in first parity. First-parity sire of calf trends were unfavorable for dystocia, but favorable for stillbirth. All environmental trends were nearly zero. Regressions of evaluations of the complete analysis on a model including only calvings before 2011 were all >0.8. All evaluations met the Interbull Method 3 criterion for unbiasedness. Model 4, which computed genetic evaluations for all animals for all 4 traits accounting for all known relationships and correlations among the traits, is recommended for routine genetic evaluation of calving traits. PMID:26547643

  14. Moral and Legal Decisions in Reproductive and Genetic Engineering

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Heim, Werner G.

    1972-01-01

    Discusses the moral and ethical issues raised by the imminent possibilities for genetic and reproductive manipulation of humans, the responsibilities of scientists, moralists, and social scientists, and the role of teachers in public information. (AL)

  15. Physiology of SLC12 transporters: lessons from inherited human genetic mutations and genetically engineered mouse knockouts

    PubMed Central

    Gagnon, Kenneth B.

    2013-01-01

    Among the over 300 members of the solute carrier (SLC) group of integral plasma membrane transport proteins are the nine electroneutral cation-chloride cotransporters belonging to the SLC12 gene family. Seven of these transporters have been functionally described as coupling the electrically silent movement of chloride with sodium and/or potassium. Although in silico analysis has identified two additional SLC12 family members, no physiological role has been ascribed to the proteins encoded by either the SLC12A8 or the SLC12A9 genes. Evolutionary conservation of this gene family from protists to humans confirms their importance. A wealth of physiological, immunohistochemical, and biochemical studies have revealed a great deal of information regarding the importance of this gene family to human health and disease. The sequencing of the human genome has provided investigators with the capability to link several human diseases with mutations in the genes encoding these plasma membrane proteins. The availability of bacterial artificial chromosomes, recombination engineering techniques, and the mouse genome sequence has simplified the creation of targeting constructs to manipulate the expression/function of these cation-chloride cotransporters in the mouse in an attempt to recapitulate some of these human pathologies. This review will summarize the three human disorders that have been linked to the mutation/dysfunction of the Na-Cl, Na-K-2Cl, and K-Cl cotransporters (i.e., Bartter's, Gitleman's, and Andermann's syndromes), examine some additional pathologies arising from genetically modified mouse models of these cotransporters including deafness, blood pressure, hyperexcitability, and epithelial transport deficit phenotypes. PMID:23325410

  16. Contribution of Genetic Influences to Animal-to-Animal Variation in Myoglobin Content and Beef Lean Color Stability

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Longissimus thoracis steaks from steers (n = 464) with 0 to 50% inheritance of Angus (A), Charolais (C), Gelbvieh (G), Hereford (H), Limousin (L), Red Angus (RA), and Simmental (S) were evaluated during 6 d of display to assess genetic contributions to color stability. Color space values (CIE L* [l...

  17. Hybrid Neural-Network: Genetic Algorithm Technique for Aircraft Engine Performance Diagnostics Developed and Demonstrated

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kobayashi, Takahisa; Simon, Donald L.

    2002-01-01

    As part of the NASA Aviation Safety Program, a unique model-based diagnostics method that employs neural networks and genetic algorithms for aircraft engine performance diagnostics has been developed and demonstrated at the NASA Glenn Research Center against a nonlinear gas turbine engine model. Neural networks are applied to estimate the internal health condition of the engine, and genetic algorithms are used for sensor fault detection, isolation, and quantification. This hybrid architecture combines the excellent nonlinear estimation capabilities of neural networks with the capability to rank the likelihood of various faults given a specific sensor suite signature. The method requires a significantly smaller data training set than a neural network approach alone does, and it performs the combined engine health monitoring objectives of performance diagnostics and sensor fault detection and isolation in the presence of nominal and degraded engine health conditions.

  18. Bacteria are small but not stupid: cognition, natural genetic engineering and socio-bacteriology.

    PubMed

    Shapiro, J A

    2007-12-01

    Forty years' experience as a bacterial geneticist has taught me that bacteria possess many cognitive, computational and evolutionary capabilities unimaginable in the first six decades of the twentieth century. Analysis of cellular processes such as metabolism, regulation of protein synthesis, and DNA repair established that bacteria continually monitor their external and internal environments and compute functional outputs based on information provided by their sensory apparatus. Studies of genetic recombination, lysogeny, antibiotic resistance and my own work on transposable elements revealed multiple widespread bacterial systems for mobilizing and engineering DNA molecules. Examination of colony development and organization led me to appreciate how extensive multicellular collaboration is among the majority of bacterial species. Contemporary research in many laboratories on cell-cell signaling, symbiosis and pathogenesis show that bacteria utilise sophisticated mechanisms for intercellular communication and even have the ability to commandeer the basic cell biology of 'higher' plants and animals to meet their own needs. This remarkable series of observations requires us to revise basic ideas about biological information processing and recognise that even the smallest cells are sentient beings. PMID:18053935

  19. Genetically Engineered Mouse Models Reveal the Importance of Proteases as Drug Targets in Osteoarthritis

    PubMed Central

    Miller, Rachel E.; Lu, Yongzhi; Tortorella, Micky D.; Malfait, Anne-Marie

    2014-01-01

    More than two decades of research has revealed a network of proteases that orchestrates cartilage degradation in osteoarthritis. This network includes not only metalloproteinases that degrade the major macromolecules in cartilage, aggrecan and type II collagen, but also serine proteases and cysteine proteases, such as cathepsin K. The current review summarizes the role of proteases in osteoarthritis progression, based on studies in genetically engineered mouse models. In addition, a brief overview of the biochemical characteristics and features of several key proteases in this network is provided, with the aim of increasing our understanding of how they function. Collectively, based on the data published to date, it can be concluded that at least three enzymes stand out as major targets for osteoarthritis drug development: ADAMTS-5, MMP-13, and cathepsin K. Mice that lack these enzymes are protected from cartilage damage and, to a varying degree, from bone changes in surgical models of osteoarthritis. In vivo studies with selective small molecule inhibitors targeting these proteases have been performed in various animal models. Going forward, mouse models will provide a tremendous opportunity for testing the therapeutic effects of protease inhibitors, not just on progression of structural damage to the joint, but also on associated pain. PMID:23926636

  20. DECOMPOSTION OF GENETICALLY ENGINEERED TOBACCO UNDER FIELD CONDITIONS: PERSISTENCE OF THE PROTEINASE INHIBITOR I PRODUCT AND EFFECTS OF SOIL MICROBIAL RESPIRATION AND PROTOZOA, NEMATODE AND MICROARTHR

    EPA Science Inventory

    1. To evaluate the potential effects of genetically engineered (transgenic) plants on soil ecosystems, litterbags containing leaves of non-engineered (parental) and transgenic tobacco plants were buried in field plots. The transgenic tobacco plants were genetically engineered to ...

  1. Genetic correction using engineered nucleases for gene therapy applications.

    PubMed

    Li, Hongmei Lisa; Nakano, Takao; Hotta, Akitsu

    2014-01-01

    Genetic mutations in humans are associated with congenital disorders and phenotypic traits. Gene therapy holds the promise to cure such genetic disorders, although it has suffered from several technical limitations for decades. Recent progress in gene editing technology using tailor-made nucleases, such as meganucleases (MNs), zinc finger nucleases (ZFNs), TAL effector nucleases (TALENs) and, more recently, CRISPR/Cas9, has significantly broadened our ability to precisely modify target sites in the human genome. In this review, we summarize recent progress in gene correction approaches of the human genome, with a particular emphasis on the clinical applications of gene therapy. PMID:24329887

  2. Genetic engineering: a matter that requires further refinement in Spanish secondary school textbooks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martínez-Gracia, M. V.; Gil-Quýlez, M. J.

    2003-09-01

    Genetic engineering is now an integral part of many high school textbooks but little work has been done to assess whether it is being properly addressed. A checklist with 19 items was used to analyze how genetic engineering is presented in biology textbooks commonly used in Spanish high schools, including the content, its relationship with fundamental genetic principles, and how it aims to improve the genetic literacy of students. The results show that genetic engineering was normally introduced without a clear reference to the universal genetic code, protein expression or the genetic material shared by all species. In most cases it was poorly defined, without a clear explanation of all the relevant processes involved. Some procedures (such as vectors) were explained in detail without considering previous student knowledge or skills. Some books emphasized applications such as the human genome project without describing DNA sequencing. All books included possible repercussions, but in most cases only fashionable topics such as human cloning. There was an excess of information that was not always well founded and hence was unsuitable to provide a meaningful understanding of DNA technology required for citizens in the twenty-first century.

  3. A COMPARISON OF SIRE AND ANIMAL MODEL GENETIC PARAMETER ESTIMATES FROM HERDS WITH HIGH AND LOW WITHIN-HERD HERITABILITIES

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The objectives of this study were to determine if within-herd heritability (WHH) estimated with regression techniques accurately reflects heritability (h2) differences among herds and to compare sire and animal model genetic parameter estimates among herds varying in WHH. Milk, fat, and protein yiel...

  4. Integrating policies for the management of animal genetic resources with demand for livestock products and environmental sustainability

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Recognition of the need to conserve animal genetic resources comes at a time when the global livestock sector faces significant challenges in meeting the growing demand for livestock products and the mitigation of negative environmental impacts caused by livestock. Outside of the U.S. it would seem ...

  5. An Ethical Study on the Uses of Enhancement Genetic Engineering

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kawakita, Koji

    A variety of biomedical technologies are being developed that can be used for purposes other than treating diseases. Such “enhancement technologies” can be used to improve our own and future generation's life-chances. While these technologies can help people in many ways, their use raises important ethical issues. Some arguments for anti-enhancement as well as pro-enhancement seem to rest, however, on shaky foundation. Both company engineers and the general public had better learn more from technological, economical and philosophical histories. For such subjects may provide engineers with less opportunities of technological misuses and more powers of self-esteem in addition to self-control.

  6. Genetically modified animals from life-science, socio-economic and ethical perspectives: examining issues in an EU policy context.

    PubMed

    Frewer, L J; Kleter, G A; Brennan, M; Coles, D; Fischer, A R H; Houdebine, L M; Mora, C; Millar, K; Salter, B

    2013-06-25

    The interdisciplinary EC consortium (the PEGASUS project) aimed to examine the issues raised by the development, implementation and commercialisation of genetically modified (GM) animals, and derivative foods and pharmaceutical products. The results integrated existing social (including existing public perception) environmental and economic knowledge regarding GM animals to formulate policy recommendations relevant to new developments and applications. The use of GM in farmed animals (aquatic, terrestrial and pharmaceutical) was mapped and reviewed. A foresight exercise was conducted to identity future developments. Three case studies (aquatic, terrestrial and pharmaceutical) were applied to identify the issues raised, including the potential risks and benefits of GM animals from the perspectives of the production chain (economics and agri-food sector) and the life sciences (human and animal health, environmental impact, animal welfare and sustainable production). Ethical and policy concerns were examined through application of combined ethical matrix method and policy workshops. The case studies were also used to demonstrate the utility of public engagement in the policy process. The results suggest that public perceptions, ethical issues, the competitiveness of EU animal production and risk-benefit assessments that consider human and animal health, environmental impact and sustainable production need to be considered in EU policy development. Few issues were raised with application in the pharmaceutical sector, assuming ethical and economic issues were addressed in policy, but the introduction of agricultural GM animal applications should be considered on a case-by-case basis. PMID:23567982

  7. A Hybrid Neural Network-Genetic Algorithm Technique for Aircraft Engine Performance Diagnostics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kobayashi, Takahisa; Simon, Donald L.

    2001-01-01

    In this paper, a model-based diagnostic method, which utilizes Neural Networks and Genetic Algorithms, is investigated. Neural networks are applied to estimate the engine internal health, and Genetic Algorithms are applied for sensor bias detection and estimation. This hybrid approach takes advantage of the nonlinear estimation capability provided by neural networks while improving the robustness to measurement uncertainty through the application of Genetic Algorithms. The hybrid diagnostic technique also has the ability to rank multiple potential solutions for a given set of anomalous sensor measurements in order to reduce false alarms and missed detections. The performance of the hybrid diagnostic technique is evaluated through some case studies derived from a turbofan engine simulation. The results show this approach is promising for reliable diagnostics of aircraft engines.

  8. Comparison of genetic characteristics and pathogenicity of Lactococcus garvieae isolated from aquatic animals in Taiwan.

    PubMed

    Tsai, Ming-An; Wang, Pei-Chyi; Liaw, Li-Ling; Yoshida, Terutoyo; Chen, Shih-Chu

    2012-12-01

    Seventy-six Taiwanese bacterial isolates including 74 from diseased, cultured, aquatic animals (54 grey mullet Mugil cephalus, 3 basket mullet Chelon alatus, 2 tilapia Oreochromis niloticus, 1 grouper Epinephelus coioides, 2 yellowfin seabream Acanthopagrus latus, 1 Borneo mullet Chelon macrolepis, 1 bullfrog Rana catesbeiana, 1 Japanese eel Anguilla japonica, and 9 giant freshwater prawns Macrobrachium rosenbergii), 1 wild-caught seafood species (squid muscle collected from a restaurant) and 1 human isolate (from a patient with a history of consuming raw squid in the previously mentioned restaurant), all collected between 1999 and 2006, were confirmed by PCR assay to be Lactococcus garvieae. The phenotypic characterization was determined by rabbit anti-KG+ and KG- serums, and 74 of the 76 Taiwanese strains displayed a KG- phenotype. The genetic characterization was investigated by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE). Genomic DNA was digested with restriction endonucleases ApaI and SmaI and separated by PFGE. Ten different L. garvieae pulsotypes were identified. Predominant pulsotypes A1a/S1a were obtained from >96% of strains (52 of 54) from grey mullet, demonstrating a clonal dissemination of L. garvieae in grey mullet in Taiwan. In experimental challenges with grey mullet and tilapia, L. garvieae pulsotypes A1/S1 and A11/S11 showed higher virulence compared with other pulsotypes. PMID:23209077

  9. Plasmid-Based Reverse Genetics for Animal Double-Stranded RNA Viruses

    PubMed Central

    Kobayashi, Takeshi; Antar, Annukka A. R.; Boehme, Karl W.; Danthi, Pranav; Eby, Elizabeth A.; Guglielmi, Kristen M.; Holm, Geoffrey H.; Johnson, Elizabeth M.; Maginnis, Melissa S.; Naik, Sam; Skelton, Wesley B.; Wetzel, J. Denise; Wilson, Gregory J.; Chappell, James D.; Dermody, Terence S.

    2007-01-01

    SUMMARY Mammalian orthoreoviruses (reoviruses) are highly tractable experimental models for studies of double-stranded (ds) RNA virus replication and pathogenesis. Reoviruses infect respiratory and intestinal epithelium and disseminate systemically in newborn animals. Until now, a strategy to rescue infectious virus from cloned cDNA has not been available for any member of the Reoviridae family of dsRNA viruses. We report the generation of viable reovirus following plasmid transfection of murine L929 (L) cells using a strategy free of helper virus and independent of selection. Point mutations introduced into viral capsid proteins ?1 and ?3 were used to define sequences that govern susceptibility to cleavage by intestinal proteases. We recovered a recombinant virus that expresses green fluorescent protein (GFP) by replacement of the ?3 open-reading frame with GFP. The plasmid-based reverse genetics approach described here can be exploited for studies of reovirus replication and pathogenesis and used to develop reovirus as a vaccine vector. PMID:18005692

  10. Non-Genetic Engineering Approaches for Isolating and Generating Novel Yeasts for Industrial Applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chambers, P. J.; Bellon, J. R.; Schmidt, S. A.; Varela, C.; Pretorius, I. S.

    Generating novel yeast strains for industrial applications should be quite straightforward; after all, research into the genetics, biochemistry and physiology of Baker's Yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, has paved the way for many advances in the modern biological sciences. We probably know more about this humble eukaryote than any other, and it is the most tractable of organisms for manipulation using modern genetic engineering approaches. In many countries, however, there are restrictions on the use of genetically-modified organisms (GMOs), particularly in foods and beverages, and the level of consumer acceptance of GMOs is, at best, variable. Thus, many researchers working with industrial yeasts use genetic engineering techniques primarily as research tools, and strain development continues to rely on non-GM technologies. This chapter explores the non-GM tools and strategies available to such researchers.

  11. An arsenic-specific biosensor with genetically engineered Shewanella oneidensis in a bioelectrochemical system.

    PubMed

    Webster, Dylan P; TerAvest, Michaela A; Doud, Devin F R; Chakravorty, Arun; Holmes, Eric C; Radens, Caleb M; Sureka, Swati; Gralnick, Jeffrey A; Angenent, Largus T

    2014-12-15

    Genetically engineered microbial biosensors have yet to realize commercial success in environmental applications due, in part, to difficulties associated with transducing and transmitting traditional bioluminescent information. Bioelectrochemical systems (BESs) output a direct electric signal that can be incorporated into devices for remote environmental monitoring. Here, we describe a BES-based biosensor with genetically encoded specificity for a toxic metal. By placing an essential component of the metal reduction (Mtr) pathway of Shewanella oneidensis under the control of an arsenic-sensitive promoter, we have genetically engineered a strain that produces increased current in response to arsenic when inoculated into a BES. Our BES-based biosensor has a detection limit of ~40 ?M arsenite with a linear range up to 100 ?M arsenite. Because our transcriptional circuit relies on the activation of a single promoter, similar sensing systems may be developed to detect other analytes by the swap of a single genetic part. PMID:25038536

  12. The feasibility of ureteral tissue engineering using autologous veins: an orthotopic animal model with long term results

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background In an earlier study we demonstrated the feasibility to create tissue engineered venous scaffolds in vitro and in vivo. In this study we investigated the use of tissue engineered constructs for ureteral replacement in a long term orthotopic minipig model. In many different projects well functional ureretal tissue was established using tissue engineering in animals with short-time follow up (12 weeks). Therefore urothelial cells were harvested from the bladder, cultured, expanded in vitro, labelled with fluorescence and seeded onto the autologous veins, which were harvested from animals during a second surgery. Three days after cell seeding the right ureter was replaced with the cell-seeded matrices in six animals, while further 6 animals received an unseeded vein for ureteral replacement. The animals were sacrificed 12, 24, and 48 weeks after implantation. Gross examination, intravenous pyelogram (IVP), H&E staining, Trichrome Masson’s Staining, and immunohistochemistry with pancytokeratin AE1/AE3, smooth muscle alpha actin, and von Willebrand factor were performed in retrieved specimens. Results The IVP and gross examination demonstrated that no animals with tissue engineered ureters and all animals of the control group presented with hydronephrosis after 12 weeks. In the 24-week group, one tissue engineered and one unseeded vein revealed hydronephrosis. After 48 weeks all tissue engineered animals and none of the control group showed hydronephrosis on the treated side. Histochemistry and immunohistochemistry revealed a multilayer of urothelial cells attached to the seeded venous grafts. Conclusions Venous grafts may be a potential source for ureteral reconstruction. The results of so far published ureteral tissue engineering projects reveal data up to 12 weeks after implantation. Even if the animal numbers of this study are small, there is an increasing rate of hydronephrosis revealing failure of ureteral tissue engineering with autologous matrices in time points longer than 3 months after implantation. Further investigations have to prove adequate clinical outcome and appropriate functional long-term results. PMID:25381044

  13. An animal model for the study of the genetic bases of behaviour in men: the multiple marker strains (MMS).

    PubMed

    Clment, Y; Lepicard, E; Chapouthier, G

    2001-06-01

    Animal models are often used for preclinical research on the neurobiology of psychiatric disorders. Whereas many are employed to screen new therapeutic agents, few of them are used to study the genetic bases of psychiatric diseases, probably because of the complex genetic determinism underlying quantitative behavioral traits such as mood, personality or intelligence. The present article presents a short review introducing an analysis model using mice: the marker strains model. Using this model it is possible both to display genetic determinism data and to locate some of the chromosomal fragments involved in the regulation of anxiogenic processes. At present it cannot accurately determine the position of one or more genes, but it does provide a valuable means of 'scanning' the genome for an approximation. Through genetic analysis, using the model, an attempt will be made to identify autosomal fragments which may be involved in two behavioural traits: anxiety and chemical-induced seizures. In this paper, after reviewing theoretical aspects of looking for genes involved in behaviour, we will successively introduce studies in genetic topics in psychiatric human studies as well as appropriated behavioural animal studies. Then we will present a genetic model in mice which allows us to locate chromosomal fragments associated with a behavioural trait: multiple marker strains. PMID:11418276

  14. Gene therapy in dentistry: tool of genetic engineering. Revisited.

    PubMed

    Gupta, Khushboo; Singh, Saurabh; Garg, Kavita Nitish

    2015-03-01

    Advances in biotechnology have brought gene therapy to the forefront of medical research. The concept of transferring genes to tissues for clinical applications has been discussed nearly half a century, but the ability to manipulate genetic material via recombinant DNA technology has brought this goal to reality. The feasibility of gene transfer was first demonstrated using tumour viruses. This led to development of viral and nonviral methods for the genetic modification of somatic cells. Applications of gene therapy to dental and oral problems illustrate the potential impact of this technology on dentistry. Preclinical trial results regarding the same have been very promising. In this review we will discuss methods, vectors involved, clinical implication in dentistry and scientific issues associated with gene therapy. PMID:25540850

  15. Food safety evaluation of crops produced through genetic engineering--how to reduce unintended effects?

    PubMed

    Jeleni?, Sre?ko

    2005-06-01

    Scientists started applying genetic engineering techniques to improve crops two decades ago; about 70 varieties obtained via genetic engineering have been approved to date. Although genetic engineering offers the most precise and controllable genetic modification of crops in entire history of plant improvement, the site of insertion of a desirable gene cannot be predicted during the application of this technology. As a consequence, unintended effects might occur due to activation or silencing of genes, giving rise to allergic reactions or toxicity. Therefore, extensive chemical, biochemical and nutritional analyses are performed on each new genetically engineered variety. Since the unintended effects may be predictable on the basis of what is known about the insertion place of the transgenic DNA, an important aim of plant biotechnology is to define techniques for the insertion of transgene into the predetermined chromosomal position (gene targeting). Although gene targeting cannot be applied routinely in crop plants, given the recent advances, that goal may be reached in the near future. PMID:15968835

  16. Genetic and phenotypic parameters of age at first mating, litter size and animal size in Finnish mink.

    PubMed

    Koivula, M; Strandn, I; Mntysaari, E A

    2010-02-01

    Mink skin size in Finland, as well as in other countries, has increased considerably during last decade. However, there are signs that selection for large body size has a negative impact on litter size (LS) and also for survival of kits. Therefore, it is important to study the genetic relationships among fertility traits and animal size (AS). The variance components for age at first mating (AFM) and first three parity LS and AS were estimated using multi-trait restricted maximum likelihood animal model. Data included 82 945 animals born during 1990 to 2004, originating from nine farms. Heritability estimates for the fertility traits were from 0.10 to 0.15. For AS, heritability was estimated to be 0.18. Genetic correlation between AS and all fertility traits was estimated to be negative (varying from -0.004 to -0.38). It is important to recognize this antagonistic relationship and include the reproductive traits into breeding goals to maintain good reproductive performance when selecting for increased body size and hence larger pelts in fur animals. Genetic correlations between the traits should be accounted in breeding value evaluations by using a multi-trait model. Including AFM into breeding value estimation would also improve the accuracy of breeding value estimation for fertility, because females missing the first LS still have record on AFM. PMID:22443871

  17. The hermeneutic challenge of genetic engineering: Habermas and the transhumanists.

    PubMed

    Edgar, Andrew

    2009-06-01

    The purpose of this paper is to explore the impact that developments in transhumanist technologies may have upon human cultures (and thus upon the lifeworld), and to do so by exploring a potential debate between Habermas and the transhumanists. Transhumanists, such as Nick Bostrom, typically see the potential in genetic and other technologies for positively expanding and transcending human nature. In contrast, Habermas is a representative of those who are fearful of this technology, suggesting that it will compound the deleterious effects of the colonisation of the lifeworld, further constraining human autonomy and undermining the meaningfulness of the lifeworld by expanding the technological control and manipulation of humanity. It will be argued that these opposed positions are grounded in fundamentally different understandings of the consequences of scientific and technological advance. On one level, the transhumanists remain confident that the lifeworld has within it the resources necessary to find meaning and purpose in a society deeply infused by genetic technology. Habermas disagrees. On another level, the difference is articulated by Horkheimer and Adorno in Dialectic of Enlightenment, primarily by challenging what may be understood as a Baconian faith in science as a project for the domination of nature (where nature is an infinitely malleable material, to be dominated and shaped, without adverse consequences, purely for the purposes of human survival). While the transhumanists broadly embrace this faith, Habermas returns to something akin to Horkheimer and Adorno's pessimistic scepticism. PMID:19219641

  18. Animal models of physiologic markers of male reproduction: genetically defined infertile mice

    SciTech Connect

    Chubb, C.

    1987-10-01

    The present report focuses on novel animal models of male infertility: genetically defined mice bearing single-gene mutations that induce infertility. The primary goal of the investigations was to identify the reproductive defects in these mutant mice. The phenotypic effects of the gene mutations were deciphered by comparing the mutant mice to their normal siblings. Initially testicular steroidogenesis and spermatogenesis were investigated. The physiologic markers for testicular steroidogenesis were steroid secretion by testes perifused in vitro, seminal vesicle weight, and Leydig cell histology. Spermatogenesis was evaluated by the enumeration of homogenization-resistant sperm/spermatids in testes and by morphometric analyses of germ cells in the seminiferous epithelium. If testicular function appeared normal, the authors investigated the sexual behavior of the mice. The parameters of male sexual behavior that were quantified included mount patency, mount frequency, intromission latency, thrusts per intromission, ejaculation latency, and ejaculation duration. Females of pairs breeding under normal circumstances were monitored for the presence of vaginal plugs and pregnancies. The patency of the ejaculatory process was determined by quantifying sperm in the female reproductive tract after sexual behavior tests. Sperm function was studied by quantitatively determining sperm motility during videomicroscopic observation. Also, the ability of epididymal sperm to function within the uterine environment was analyzed by determining sperm capacity to initiate pregnancy after artificial insemination. Together, the experimental results permitted the grouping of the gene mutations into three general categories. They propose that the same biological markers used in the reported studies can be implemented in the assessment of the impact that environmental toxins may have on male reproduction.

  19. Divergent maternal behavioral patterns in two genetic animal models of depression.

    PubMed

    Braw, Y; Malkesman, O; Merenlender, A; Dagan, M; Bercovich, A; Lavi-Avnon, Y; Weller, A

    2009-02-16

    Maternal behavior was examined in Flinders Sensitive-Line (FSL) and Wistar-Kyoto (WKY) rats, two different genetic animal models of depression. Behavioral patterns were assessed by undisturbed observations in the nest [Post-Partum Days (PPD) 4 and 9] and post-disturbance observations ("retrieval tests") on PPD 10. Litters were randomly allocated to a mild chronic-stress condition (limiting available bedding between PPD 2 and 9) or a standard rearing condition. The findings indicated that FSL dams did not differ from control dams in the undisturbed observations. However, in the post-disturbance observations FSL dams exhibited less pup-directed behaviors, a shorter latency to first pup carrying/retrieval and more self-directed behaviors than controls (the latter effect only in dams' interaction with whole litter). In contrast, WKY dams performed more pup-directed activities (e.g., nursing and licking) and less self-directed activities in both the undisturbed and post-disturbance observations (in both dams' interaction with single-pup and with the whole-litter) compared to controls. Accordingly, WKY dams exhibited a shorter latency for first pup-licking bout (in both post-disturbance observations). The early life mild chronic-stress used in the study ('limited-bedding') had a minor effect on the dams' behavior. Overall, the study investigated for the first time the maternal behavior of WKY dams and suggests that these dams show an almost opposite behavioral pattern to that of FSL dams. The results are discussed with regard to earlier findings in the FSL strain and behavioral patterns documented in depressed human mothers. PMID:18957302

  20. MICROCOSM FOR MEASURING SURVIVAL AND CONJUGATION OF GENETICALLY ENGINEERED BACTERIA IN RHIZOSPHERE ENVIRONMENTS

    EPA Science Inventory

    A microcosm is described to evaluate and measure bacterial conjugation in the rhizosphere of barley and radish with strains of Pseudomonas cepacia. he purpose was to describe a standard method useful for evaluating the propensity of genetically engineered microorganisms (GEMs) to...

  1. Development of enzymes and enzyme systems by genetic engineering to convert biomass to sugars

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    TITLE Development of Enzymes and Enzyme Systems by Genetic Engineering to Convert Biomass to Sugars ABSTRACT Plant cellulosic material is one of the most viable renewable resources for the world’s fuel and chemical feedstock needs. Currently ethanol derived from corn starch is the most common li...

  2. CALIBRATION OF GREENHOUSE AND FIELD FOR SURVIVAL OF GENETICALLY ENGINEERED MICROORGANISMS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Because of current concerns regarding the release of genetically engineered microorganisms (GEMs) into the environment, the fate, survival, and effects of many GEMs will need to be evaluated in small-scale releases performed in controlled, contained environments. n this study, th...

  3. METHODS TO MEASURE THE INFLUENCE OF GENETICALLY ENGINEERED BACTERIA ON ECOLOGICAL PROCESSES IN SOIL

    EPA Science Inventory

    The purpose of this document is to summarize the methods and concep s that have been developed and used by the author and his colleagues to study the potential effects of genetically engineered microorganisms (GEMs) introduced, deliberately or accidently, into soil on microbemedi...

  4. SURVIVAL OF GENETICALLY ENGINEERED MICROBES IN THE ENVIRONMENT: EFFECT OF HOST/VECTOR RELATIONSHIP

    EPA Science Inventory

    The fate and survival of genetically engineered microbes is dependent on the survival, establishment, and growth of the microbial host, as well as on the maintenance, replication, and segregation of the recombinant plasmids within the bacterial host population. The interactions o...

  5. 76 FR 8707 - Syngenta Seeds, Inc.; Determination of Nonregulated Status for Corn Genetically Engineered To...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-02-15

    ... 340. In a notice \\1\\ published in the Federal Register on November 19, 2008 (73 FR 69602-69604, Docket.... In a subsequent notice published in the Federal Register on June 4, 2009 (74 FR 26832-26835, Docket... Nonregulated Status for Corn Genetically Engineered To Produce an Enzyme That Facilitates Ethanol...

  6. Can Man Control His Biological Evolution? A Symposium on Genetic Engineering. Probabilities and Practicalities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Djerassi, Carl

    1972-01-01

    Manipulation of genes in human beings on a large scale is not possible under present conditions because it lacks economic potential and other attractions for industry. However, preventive'' genetic engineering may be a field for vast research in the future and will perhaps be approved by governments, parishes, people and industry. (PS)

  7. Enhancing the Internationalisation of Distance Education in the Biological Sciences: The DUNE Project and Genetic Engineering.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Leach, C. K.; And Others

    1997-01-01

    Describes the Distance Educational Network of Europe (DUNE) project that aims at enhancing the development of distance education in an international context. Highlights issues relating to the delivery of distance-learning courses in a transnational forum. Describes the genetic engineering course that aims at explaining the core techniques of…

  8. Reactions to a New Technology: Students' Ideas about Genetically Engineered Foodstuffs.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hill, Ruaraidh; Stanisstreet, Martin; Boyes, Edward; O'Sullivan, Helen

    1998-01-01

    Explores the prevalence of ideas among 16 to 19 year-old students about the application of the rapidly expanding technology of genetic engineering to food production. Findings suggest that more females were cautious about these foodstuffs than were males. Contains 20 references. (DDR)

  9. IMPROVING PLANT GENETIC ENGINEERING BY MANIPULATING THE HOST. (R829479C001)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Agrobacterium-mediated transformation is a major technique for the genetic engineering of plants. However, there are many economically important crop and tree species that remain highly recalcitrant to Agrobacterium infection. Although attempts have been made to ...

  10. 'HoneySweet' plum - a valuable genetically engineered fruit-tree cultivar and germplasm resource

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    ‘HoneySweet’ is a plum variety developed through genetic engineering to be highly resistant to plum pox potyvirus (PPV), the causal agent of sharka disease, that threatens stone-fruit industries world-wide and most specifically, in Europe. Field testing for over 15 years in Europe has demonstrated ...

  11. 78 FR 66891 - Monsanto Co.; Determination of Nonregulated Status of Soybean Genetically Engineered for...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-11-07

    ... and products altered or produced through genetic engineering that are plant pests or that there is.... In a notice \\2\\ published in the Federal Register on July 13, 2012, (77 FR 41354-41355, Docket No... (77 FR 13258-13260, Docket No. APHIS-2011-0129) a notice describing our public review process...

  12. Enhancing the Internationalisation of Distance Education in the Biological Sciences: The DUNE Project and Genetic Engineering.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Leach, C. K.; And Others

    1997-01-01

    Describes the Distance Educational Network of Europe (DUNE) project that aims at enhancing the development of distance education in an international context. Highlights issues relating to the delivery of distance-learning courses in a transnational forum. Describes the genetic engineering course that aims at explaining the core techniques of

  13. Genetically Engineered Poxviruses for Recombinant Gene Expression, Vaccination, and Safety

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moss, Bernard

    1996-10-01

    Vaccinia virus, no longer required for immunization against smallpox, now serves as a unique vector for expressing genes within the cytoplasm of mammalian cells. As a research tool, recombinant vaccinia viruses are used to synthesize and analyze the structure--function relationships of proteins, determine the targets of humoral and cell-mediated immunity, and investigate the types of immune response needed for protection against specific infectious diseases and cancer. The vaccine potential of recombinant vaccinia virus has been realized in the form of an effective oral wild-life rabies vaccine, although no product for humans has been licensed. A genetically altered vaccinia virus that is unable to replicate in mammalian cells and produces diminished cytopathic effects retains the capacity for high-level gene expression and immunogenicity while promising exceptional safety for laboratory workers and potential vaccine recipients.

  14. Functional dynamics of living systems and genetic engineering.

    PubMed

    Buiatti, Marcello

    2004-01-01

    The discussion on Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO's) has been centred mainly on the nature and effects on economy, human health, environment, of the few transgenic plant lines present in the market in the last eight years. On the contrary, the present paper starts with a discussion of some of the relevant changes in our basic knowledge of the structure and dynamics of living systems in the last twenty years. Contemporary Biology is then compared with what may be called the "modern paradigm" of life sciences on which present day GMO's are conceptually based. Technical, environmental, social and economic problems deriving from the unexpected, persistent prevalence of the old fashioned modern vision of life in the "spirit of time" will be thoroughly discussed with a particular attention to the virtualisation process of GMO's and the effects of the prevalence over economic, social, environmental reality of their symbolic values. PMID:15754592

  15. Genetically engineered poxviruses for recombinant gene expression, vaccination, and safety.

    PubMed Central

    Moss, B

    1996-01-01

    Vaccinia virus, no longer required for immunization against smallpox, now serves as a unique vector for expressing genes within the cytoplasm of mammalian cells. As a research tool, recombinant vaccinia viruses are used to synthesize and analyze the structure-function relationships of proteins, determine the targets of humoral and cell-mediated immunity, and investigate the types of immune response needed for protection against specific infectious diseases and cancer. The vaccine potential of recombinant vaccinia virus has been realized in the form of an effective oral wild-life rabies vaccine, although no product for humans has been licensed. A genetically altered vaccinia virus that is unable to replicate in mammalian cells and produces diminished cytopathic effects retains the capacity for high-level gene expression and immunogenicity while promising exceptional safety for laboratory workers and potential vaccine recipients. Images Fig. 1 Fig. 2 PMID:8876137

  16. Do physicians' beliefs about genetic engineering influence their likelihood of prescribing a biopharmaceutical? An empirical investigation.

    PubMed

    Nonis, Sarath A; Hudson, Gail I

    2009-01-01

    Biopharmaceuticals present one of the fastest growing segments of the pharmaceutical industry. Biopharmaceuticals are produced through genetic engineering, a technology that some believe is unethical and can have unforeseen consequences to individual health and the environment (Bredhal, 1999; Gaskell et al., 1999; Hallman et al., 2002). In this study, we investigate whether physicians' beliefs about genetic engineering have any influence on their likelihood of prescribing a biopharmaceutical. A sample of 175 physicians practicing in one state in the mid-south region of the U.S. was selected and their beliefs, importance of genetic modification as a drug attribute and the likelihood of prescribing a biopharmaceutical, were measured. Results showed that the physicians' beliefs about genetic engineering related to their likelihood of prescribing this class of drugs. In addition, the study also found that the importance of genetic modification as a drug attribute moderated the relationship between beliefs and likelihood in the decision making process. The implications of these findings are also discussed. PMID:19813125

  17. SURVIVAL AND ENUMERATION OF AEROSOLIZED AND FREEZE-DRIED GENETICALLY ENGINEERED E. COLI, UNDER CONTROLLED ENVIRONMENTAL CONDITIONS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Aerosol survival of a genetically engineered strain of Escherichia coli demonstrated a more rapid die-off (i.e., death rate) compared to its parental wildtype. p to 77% of a freeze-dried and air-exposed genetically engineered microorganism (GEM) and wildtype bacteria could be res...

  18. Optimization of Aero Engine Acceleration Control in Combat State Based on Genetic Algorithms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Jie; Fan, Ding; Sreeram, Victor

    2012-03-01

    In order to drastically exploit the potential of the aero engine and improve acceleration performance in the combat state, an on-line optimized controller based on genetic algorithms is designed for an aero engine. For testing the validity of the presented control method, detailed joint simulation tests of the designed controller and the aero engine model are performed in the whole flight envelope. Simulation test results show that the presented control algorithm has characteristics of rapid convergence speed, high efficiency and can fully exploit the acceleration performance potential of the aero engine. Compared with the former controller, the designed on-line optimized controller (DOOC) can improve the security of the acceleration process and greatly enhance the aero engine thrust in the whole range of the flight envelope, the thrust increases an average of 8.1% in the randomly selected working states. The plane which adopts DOOC can acquire better fighting advantage in the combat state.

  19. Genetic parameters for social effects on survival in cannibalistic layers: Combining survival analysis and a linear animal model

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Mortality due to cannibalism in laying hens is a difficult trait to improve genetically, because censoring is high (animals still alive at the end of the testing period) and it may depend on both the individual itself and the behaviour of its group members, so-called associative effects (social interactions). To analyse survival data, survival analysis can be used. However, it is not possible to include associative effects in the current software for survival analysis. A solution could be to combine survival analysis and a linear animal model including associative effects. This paper presents a two-step approach (2STEP), combining survival analysis and a linear animal model including associative effects (LAM). Methods Data of three purebred White Leghorn layer lines from Institut de Slection Animale B.V., a Hendrix Genetics company, were used in this study. For the statistical analysis, survival data on 16,780 hens kept in four-bird cages with intact beaks were used. Genetic parameters for direct and associative effects on survival time were estimated using 2STEP. Cross validation was used to compare 2STEP with LAM. LAM was applied directly to estimate genetic parameters for social effects on observed survival days. Results Using 2STEP, total heritable variance, including both direct and associative genetic effects, expressed as the proportion of phenotypic variance, ranged from 32% to 64%. These results were substantially larger than when using LAM. However, cross validation showed that 2STEP gave approximately the same survival curves and rank correlations as LAM. Furthermore, cross validation showed that selection based on both direct and associative genetic effects, using either 2STEP or LAM, gave the best prediction of survival time. Conclusion It can be concluded that 2STEP can be used to estimate genetic parameters for direct and associative effects on survival time in laying hens. Using 2STEP increased the heritable variance in survival time. Cross validation showed that social genetic effects contribute to a large difference in survival days between two extreme groups. Genetic selection targeting both direct and associative effects is expected to reduce mortality due to cannibalism in laying hens. PMID:20609233

  20. Engineering Macaca fascicularis cytochrome P450 2C20 to reduce animal testing for new drugs.

    PubMed

    Rua, Francesco; Sadeghi, Sheila J; Castrignan, Silvia; Di Nardo, Giovanna; Gilardi, Gianfranco

    2012-12-01

    In order to develop in vitro methods as an alternative to P450 animal testing in the drug discovery process, two main requisites are necessary: 1) gathering of data on animal homologues of the human P450 enzymes, currently very limited, and 2) bypassing the requirement for both the P450 reductase and the expensive cofactor NADPH. In this work, P450 2C20 from Macaca fascicularis, homologue of the human P450 2C8 has been taken as a model system to develop such an alternative in vitro method by two different approaches. In the first approach called "molecular Lego", a soluble self-sufficient chimera was generated by fusing the P450 2C20 domain with the reductase domain of cytochrome P450 BM3 from Bacillus megaterium (P450 2C20/BMR). In the second approach, the need for the redox partner and also NADPH were both obviated by the direct immobilization of the P450 2C20 on glassy carbon and gold electrodes. Both systems were then compared to those obtained from the reconstituted P450 2C20 monooxygenase in presence of the human P450 reductase and NADPH using paclitaxel and amodiaquine, two typical drug substrates of the human P450 2C8. The K(M) values calculated for the 2C20 and 2C20/BMR in solution and for 2C20 immobilized on electrodes modified with gold nanoparticles were 1.9 0.2, 5.9 2.3, 3.0 0.5 ?M for paclitaxel and 1.2 0.2, 1.60.2 and 1.4 0.2 ?M for amodiaquine, respectively. The data obtained not only show that the engineering of M. fascicularis did not affect its catalytic properties but also are consistent with K(M) values measured for the microsomal human P450 2C8 and therefore show the feasibility of developing alternative in vitro animal tests. PMID:22819650

  1. Genetic Engineering of Mesenchymal Stem Cells and Its Application in Human Disease Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Hodgkinson, Conrad P.; Gomez, José A.; Mirotsou, Maria

    2010-01-01

    Abstract The use of stem cells for tissue regeneration and repair is advancing both at the bench and bedside. Stem cells isolated from bone marrow are currently being tested for their therapeutic potential in a variety of clinical conditions including cardiovascular injury, kidney failure, cancer, and neurological and bone disorders. Despite the advantages, stem cell therapy is still limited by low survival, engraftment, and homing to damage area as well as inefficiencies in differentiating into fully functional tissues. Genetic engineering of mesenchymal stem cells is being explored as a means to circumvent some of these problems. This review presents the current understanding of the use of genetically engineered mesenchymal stem cells in human disease therapy with emphasis on genetic modifications aimed to improve survival, homing, angiogenesis, and heart function after myocardial infarction. Advancements in other disease areas are also discussed. PMID:20825283

  2. Genetic Algorithm Optimization of Inlet Bleed Design for a Hypersonic Jet Engine with Mode Transition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gaiser, Kyle; Liou, Meng-Sing

    2007-10-01

    A genetic algorithm coupled with computational fluid dynamic software is used to optimize the configuration of an engine inlet at a supersonic speed. The optimization program is written to calculate the pressure recovery of many varying bleed schedules throughout the inlet walls. The goal is to find the best combination of the bleed holes' locations, diameters, and flow rates such that a high pressure recovery is maintained. Parallel computing, by means of a NASA supercomputer, is used to run the algorithm efficiently. This is the first time a genetic algorithm has been applied to inlet bleed design. A test function is used to evaluate and debug the optimization algorithm. The genetic algorithm and its associated programs show potential for use in developing more efficient bleed schedules in a hypersonic engine.

  3. The information value of non-genetic inheritance in plants and animals.

    PubMed

    English, Sinead; Pen, Ido; Shea, Nicholas; Uller, Tobias

    2015-01-01

    Parents influence the development of their offspring in many ways beyond the transmission of DNA. This includes transfer of epigenetic states, nutrients, antibodies and hormones, and behavioural interactions after birth. While the evolutionary consequences of such non-genetic inheritance are increasingly well understood, less is known about how inheritance mechanisms evolve. Here, we present a simple but versatile model to explore the adaptive evolution of non-genetic inheritance. Our model is based on a switch mechanism that produces alternative phenotypes in response to different inputs, including genes and non-genetic factors transmitted from parents and the environment experienced during development. This framework shows how genetic and non-genetic inheritance mechanisms and environmental conditions can act as cues by carrying correlational information about future selective conditions. Differential use of these cues is manifested as different degrees of genetic, parental or environmental morph determination. We use this framework to evaluate the conditions favouring non-genetic inheritance, as opposed to genetic determination of phenotype or within-generation plasticity, by applying it to two putative examples of adaptive non-genetic inheritance: maternal effects on seed germination in plants and transgenerational phase shift in desert locusts. Our simulation models show how the adaptive value of non-genetic inheritance depends on its mechanism, the pace of environmental change, and life history characteristics. PMID:25603120

  4. The Information Value of Non-Genetic Inheritance in Plants and Animals

    PubMed Central

    English, Sinead; Pen, Ido; Shea, Nicholas; Uller, Tobias

    2015-01-01

    Parents influence the development of their offspring in many ways beyond the transmission of DNA. This includes transfer of epigenetic states, nutrients, antibodies and hormones, and behavioural interactions after birth. While the evolutionary consequences of such non-genetic inheritance are increasingly well understood, less is known about how inheritance mechanisms evolve. Here, we present a simple but versatile model to explore the adaptive evolution of non-genetic inheritance. Our model is based on a switch mechanism that produces alternative phenotypes in response to different inputs, including genes and non-genetic factors transmitted from parents and the environment experienced during development. This framework shows how genetic and non-genetic inheritance mechanisms and environmental conditions can act as cues by carrying correlational information about future selective conditions. Differential use of these cues is manifested as different degrees of genetic, parental or environmental morph determination. We use this framework to evaluate the conditions favouring non-genetic inheritance, as opposed to genetic determination of phenotype or within-generation plasticity, by applying it to two putative examples of adaptive non-genetic inheritance: maternal effects on seed germination in plants and transgenerational phase shift in desert locusts. Our simulation models show how the adaptive value of non-genetic inheritance depends on its mechanism, the pace of environmental change, and life history characteristics. PMID:25603120

  5. Design and engineering aspects of a high resolution positron tomograph for small animal imaging

    SciTech Connect

    Lecomte, R.; Cadorette, J.; Richard, P.; Rodrique, S.; Rouleau, D. . Dept. of Nuclear Medicine and Radiobiology)

    1994-08-01

    The authors describe the Sherbrooke positron emission tomograph, a very high resolution device dedicated to dynamic imaging of small laboratory animals. Its distinctive features are: small discrete scintillation detectors based on avalanche photodiodes (APD) to achieve uniform, isotropic, very high spatial resolution; parallel processing for low deadtime and high count rate capability; multispectral data acquisition hardware to improve sensitivity and scatter correction; modularity to allow design flexibility and upgradability. The system implements the clam-shell'' sampling scheme and a rotating rod transmission source. All acquisition parameters can be adjusted under computer control. Temperature stability at the detector site is ensured by the use of thermoelectric modules. The initial system consists of one layer of 256 modules (two rings of detectors) defining 3 image slices in a 118 mm diameter by 10.5 mm thick field. The axial field can be extended to 50 mm using 4 layers of modules (8 rings of detectors). The design constraints and engineering aspects of an APD-based PET scanner are reviewed and preliminary results are reported.

  6. SURVIVAL OF, AND GENETIC TRANSFER BY, GENETICALLY ENGINEERED BACTERIA IN NATURAL ENVIRONMENTS

    EPA Science Inventory

    The article reviews the few studies that have evaluated the survival of bacterial hosts and cloning vectors (e.g., phages) and the transfer of genetic information, by the processes of conjugation, transduction, and transformation, in aquatic and terrestrial environments and on pl...

  7. Delivery of nucleic acid therapeutics by genetically engineered hematopoietic stem cells.

    PubMed

    Doering, Christopher B; Archer, David; Spencer, H Trent

    2010-09-30

    Several populations of adult human stem cells have been identified, but only a few of these are in routine clinical use. The hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) is arguably the most well characterized and the most routinely transplanted adult stem cell. Although details regarding several aspects of this cell's phenotype are not well understood, transplant of HSCs has advanced to become the standard of care for the treatment of a range of monogenic diseases and several types of cancer. It has also proven to be an excellent target for genetic manipulation, and clinical trials have already demonstrated the usefulness of targeting this cell as a means of delivering nucleic acid therapeutics for the treatment of several previously incurable diseases. It is anticipated that additional clinical trials will soon follow, such as genetically engineering HSCs with vectors to treat monogenic diseases such as hemophilia A. In addition to the direct targeting of HSCs, induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells have the potential to replace virtually any engineered stem cell therapeutic, including HSCs. We now know that for the broad use of genetically modified HSCs for the treatment of non-lethal diseases, e.g. hemophilia A, we must be able to regulate the introduction of nucleic acid sequences into these target cells. We can begin to refine transduction protocols to provide safer approaches to genetically manipulate HSCs and strategies are being developed to improve the overall safety of gene transfer. This review focuses on recent advances in the systemic delivery of nucleic acid therapeutics using genetically modified stem cells, specifically focusing on i) the use of retroviral vectors to genetically modify HSCs, ii) the expression of fVIII from hematopoietic stem cells for the treatment of hemophilia A, and iii) the use of genetically engineered hematopoietic cells generated from iPS cells as treatment for disorders of hematopoiesis. PMID:20869414

  8. The significance of content knowledge for informal reasoning regarding socioscientific issues: Applying genetics knowledge to genetic engineering issues

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sadler, Troy D.; Zeidler, Dana L.

    2005-01-01

    This study focused on informal reasoning regarding socioscientific issues. It sought to explore how content knowledge influenced the negotiation and resolution of contentious and complex scenarios based on genetic engineering. Two hundred and sixty-nine students drawn from undergraduate natural science and nonnatural science courses completed a quantitative test of genetics concepts. Two subsets (n = 15 for each group) of the original sample representing divergent levels of content knowledge participated in individual interviews, during which they articulated positions, rationales, counterpositions, and rebuttals in response to three gene therapy scenarios and three cloning scenarios. A mixed-methods approach was used to examine the effects of content knowledge on the use of informal reasoning patterns and the quality of informal reasoning. Participants from both groups employed the same general patterns of informal reasoning. Data did indicate that differences in content knowledge were related to variations in informal reasoning quality. Participants, with more advanced understandings of genetics, demonstrated fewer instances of reasoning flaws, as defined by a priori criteria, and were more likely to incorporate content knowledge in their reasoning patterns than participants with more nave understandings of genetics. Implications for instruction and future research are discussed.

  9. Perception of risks and benefits of in vitro fertilization, genetic engineering and biotechnology.

    PubMed

    Macer, D R

    1994-01-01

    The use of new biotechnology in medicine has become an everyday experience, but many people still express concern about biotechnology. Concerns are evoked particularly by the phrases genetic engineering and in vitro fertilization (IVF), and these concerns persist despite more than a decade of their use in medicine. Mailed nationwide opinion surveys on attitudes to biotechnology were conducted in Japan, among samples of the public (N = 551), high school biology teachers (N = 228), scientists (N = 555) and nurses (N = 301). People do see more benefits coming from science than harm when balanced against the risks. There were especially mixed perceptions of benefit and risk about IVF and genetic engineering, and a relatively high degree of worry compared to other developments of science and technology. A discussion of assisted reproductive technologies and surrogacy in Japan is also made. The opinions of people in Japan were compared to the results of previous surveys conducted in Japan, and international surveys conducted in Australia, China, Europe, New Zealand, U.K. and U.S.A. Japanese have a very high awareness of biotechnology, 97% saying that they had heard of the word. They also have a high level of awareness of IVF and genetic engineering. Genetic engineering was said to be a worthwhile research area for Japan by 76%, while 58% perceived research on IVF as being worthwhile, however 61% were worried about research on IVF or genetic engineering. Japanese expressed more concern about IVF and genetic engineering than New Zealanders. The major reason cited for rejection of genetic manipulation research in Japan and New Zealand was that it was seen as interfering with nature, playing God or as unethical. The emotions concerning these technologies are complex, and we should avoid using simplistic public opinion data as measures of public perceptions. The level of concern expressed by scientists and teachers in Japan suggest that public education "technology promotion campaigns" will not reduce concern about science and technology. Such concern should be valued as discretion that is basic to increasing the bioethical maturity of a society, rather than being feared. PMID:8146712

  10. Genetic engineering in agriculture and corporate engineering in public debate: risk, public relations, and public debate over genetically modified crops.

    PubMed

    Patel, Rajeev; Torres, Robert J; Rosset, Peter

    2005-01-01

    Corporations have long influenced environmental and occupational health in agriculture, doing a great deal of damage, making substantial profits, and shaping public debate to make it appear that environmental misfortunes are accidents of an otherwise well-functioning system, rather than systemic. The debate over the genetically modified (GM) crops is an example. The largest producer of commercial GM seeds, Monsanto, exemplifies the industry's strategies: the invocation of poor people as beneficiaries, characterization of opposition as technophobic or anti-progress, and portrayal of their products as environmentally beneficial in the absence of or despite the evidence. This strategy is endemic to contemporary market capitalism, with its incentives to companies to externalize health and environmental costs to increase profits. PMID:16350477

  11. Towards programming languages for genetic engineering of living cells.

    PubMed

    Pedersen, Michael; Phillips, Andrew

    2009-08-01

    Synthetic biology aims at producing novel biological systems to carry out some desired and well-defined functions. An ultimate dream is to design these systems at a high level of abstraction using engineering-based tools and programming languages, press a button, and have the design translated to DNA sequences that can be synthesized and put to work in living cells. We introduce such a programming language, which allows logical interactions between potentially undetermined proteins and genes to be expressed in a modular manner. Programs can be translated by a compiler into sequences of standard biological parts, a process that relies on logic programming and prototype databases that contain known biological parts and protein interactions. Programs can also be translated to reactions, allowing simulations to be carried out. While current limitations on available data prevent full use of the language in practical applications, the language can be used to develop formal models of synthetic systems, which are otherwise often presented by informal notations. The language can also serve as a concrete proposal on which future language designs can be discussed, and can help to guide the emerging standard of biological parts which so far has focused on biological, rather than logical, properties of parts. PMID:19369220

  12. Lipidomic analysis of Arabidopsis seed genetically engineered to contain DHA

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Xue-Rong; Callahan, Damien L.; Shrestha, Pushkar; Liu, Qing; Petrie, James R.; Singh, Surinder P.

    2014-01-01

    Metabolic engineering of omega-3 long-chain (?C20) polyunsaturated fatty acids (?3 LC-PUFA) in oilseeds has been one of the key targets in recent years. By expressing a transgenic pathway for enhancing the synthesis of the ?3 LC-PUFA docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) from endogenous ?-linolenic acid (ALA), we obtained the production of fish oil-like proportions of DHA in Arabidopsis seed oil. Liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) was used to characterize the triacylglycerol (TAG), diacylglycerol (DAG) and phospholipid (PL) lipid classes in the transgenic and wild type Arabidopsis seeds at both developing and mature stages. The analysis identified the appearance of several abundant DHA-containing phosphatidylcholine (PC), DAG and TAG molecular species in mature seeds. The relative abundances of PL, DAG, and TAG species showed a preferred combination of LC-PUFA with ALA in the transgenic seeds, where LC-PUFA were esterified in positions usually occupied by 20:1?9. Trace amounts of di-DHA PC and tri-DHA TAG were identified and confirmed by high resolution MS/MS. Studying the lipidome in transgenic seeds provided insights into where DHA accumulated and combined with other fatty acids of neutral and phospholipids from the developing and mature seeds. PMID:25225497

  13. Chemical modifications and genetic engineering of food proteins.

    PubMed

    Richardson, T

    1985-10-01

    Relationships of structure to function of proteins can be studied using chemical modifications of amino-acid side chains and, more recently, recombinant deoxyribonucleic acid techniques to alter primary sequences. A wide array of chemical modifications are available to the food chemist for manipulating the functionality of food proteins. The esterification of side-chain carboxyl groups in proteins to yield polycationic polymers is emphasized in this review as an example of changing the functionality of a protein via chemical derivatization. However, chemical modifications of proteins generally suffer from a lack of control in the extent of derivatization attainable, oftentimes yielding polydisperse products. Recent advances in recombinant deoxyribonucleic acid technology offer the opportunity to relate systematically well-defined alterations in the primary sequence to changes in protein functionality. Using oligonucleotide-directed mutagenesis, one can now use synthetic oligodeoxynucleotides to prepare semisynthetic genes coding for specific changes in the primary sequence of proteins. Incorporation of the altered genes into an appropriate host can lead to the production of the modified protein for structure-function relationship studies. These recombinant deoxyribonucleic acid techniques may eventually provide the means to engineer proteins and enzymes. PMID:3864797

  14. Production of polyhydroxyalkanoates from intact triacylglycerols by genetically engineered Pseudomonas.

    PubMed

    Solaiman, D K; Ashby, R D; Foglia, T A

    2001-09-01

    Pseudomonas putida and P oleovorans have been extensively studied for their production of medium-chain-length (mcl)-polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA). These bacteria are incapable of metabolizing triacylglycerols (TAGs). We have constructed recombinant P. putida and P. oleovorans that can utilize TAGs as substrates for growth and mcl-PHA synthesis. A recombinant plasmid, pCN51lip-1, carrying Pseudomonas lipase genes was used to electrotransform these organisms. The transformants expressed TAG-hydrolyzing activity as shown by a rhodamine B fluorescence plate assay. The genetically modified organisms grew in TAG-containing medium to a cell dry weight of 2-4 g/l. The recombinant P. putida produced mcl-PHA at a crude yield of 0.9-1.6 g/l with lard or coconut oil (Co) as substrate. While P. oleovorans transformant did not produce mcl-PHA, a mixed-culture fermentation approach with the wild-type and recombinant strains afforded polymer production from Co at a crude yield of 0.5 g/l. Compositional analysis by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry showed that beta-hydroxyoctanoate (31-45 mol %) and beta-hydroxydecanoate (28-35 mol %) were the dominant repeat units of the TAG-based PHA. The number-average and weight-average molecular masses of the PHAs as determined by gel permeation chromatography were 82-170 x 10(3) g/mol and 464-693 x 10(3) g/mol, respectively. The recombinant approach can greatly increase the number of organisms that can be used to produce PHA from fat and oil substrates. PMID:11601611

  15. Genetically engineered multivalent single chain antibody constructs for cancer therapy

    SciTech Connect

    Surinder Batra, Ph D

    2006-02-27

    Current therapeutic approaches against the advanced stages of human solid tumors are palliative rather than curative. Many modalities, including, surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy, either alone or in combination have met with only modest success for advanced metastatic cancers. Radioimmunotherapy (RIT) combines the specificity of monoclonal antibodies with cytotxic effects of radioisotopes. It is the smart way of delivering radiation to the known and occult metastatic cancer cells and is independent of drug toxicity and/or hormone resistance. The tumor associated glycoprotein-72 (TAG-72) containing the unique disaccharide sialyl-Tn, is highly expressed in majority of adenocarcinomas, including carcinomas of the prostate, breast, ovaries, pancreas and colon (80-90%) compared to undetectable expression in normal tissues. Monoclonal antibody CC49, reactive with TAG-72, after conjugation to potent gamma- and beta-emitting radionuclides, has been useful in selective systemic radiolocalization of disease and therapy of primary and metastatic tumor sites. However, limited therapeutic responses were observed in patients. Limited success of antibody based delivery of radioisotopes can be attributed to several factors including undesirable pharmacokinetics, poor tumor uptake and high immunogenicity of intact antibodies (IgGs). The primary factors contributing towards the failure of RIT include: 1) longer serum half-lives of the intact IgG molecules resulting in the radiotoxicity, 2) generation of human antibodies against murine antibodies (HAMA) that limits the frequency of dose administration, 3) poor diffusion rates of intact IgG due to the large size and 4) high interstitial fluid pressures (IFP) encountered in solid tumors. The major goal of our multidisciplinary project was to develop specific novel radiopharmaceuticals, with desired pharmacokinetics, for the diagnosis and therapy of solid tumors. To overcome the low uptake of radioactivity by tumors and to increase its tumor: normal tissue ratio for improved therapeutic index, we engineered a variety antibody constructs. These constructs were evaluated using novel approaches like special radionuclides, pretargeting and optimization. Due to the smaller size, the engineered antibody molecules should penetrate better throughout a tumor mass, with less dose heterogeneity, than is the case with intact IgG. Multivalent scFvs with an appropriate radionuclide, therefore, hold promising prospects for cancer therapy and clinical imaging in MAb-based radiopharmaceuticals. In addition, the human anti-mouse antibodies (HAMA) responses in patients against antibody-based therapy are usually directed against the immunoglobulin constant regions; however, anti-idiotypic responses can also be detected. The HAMA responses reduce the efficacy of treatment by removing the circulating antibody molecules, fragments, and possibly scFvs by altering the pharmacokinetic properties of the antibody. HAMA responses against divalent IgG, divalent Ig fragments, and possibly multimeric scFvs could cause immune complex formation with hypersensitivity or allergic reactions that could be harmful to patients. The use of small molecules, such as scFvs (monomeric as well as multimeric), with their shorter biological half-lives and the lack of the constant regions and humanized variable (binding regions) performed in our studies should reduce the development of HAMA. The generation of humanized and fully human scFvs should further reduce the development of HAMA. Specific accomplishments on the project are the production of large amounts of recombinant antibodies as they are required in large amounts for cancer diagnosis and therapy. A variety of single-chain Fv (scFv) constructs were engineered for the desired pharmacokinetic properties. Tetrameric and dimeric scFvs showed a two-fold advantage: (1) there was a considerable gain in avidity as compared to smaller fragments, and (2) the biological half-life was more compatible with RIT and RIS requirements. For RIT, delivery for sc(Fv)2 and [sc(Fv)2]2 in a fractionated schedule clearly presented a therapeutic advantage over single administration. The treatment group receiving tetravalent scFv showed a statistically significant prolonged survival with both single and fractionated administrations. 99mTc-labeled multivalent scFvs show good tumor targeting characteristics with high radiolocalization indices (tumor:background ratio). Macroautoradiography performed at 6 and 16 h post administration of labeled 99mTc-sc(Fv)2 and 99mTc-[sc(Fv)2] clearly detected the tumors in mice. Huamnaized scFs showed decreased immunogencity with patient sera.

  16. Knowledge-based engineering for mould design based on the use of genetic algorithm

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiang, Peng; Hu, Jianjun; Xu, Hongbin

    2005-12-01

    The process of mould design depends on one's engineering knowledge and design experience. Knowledge-based engineering (KBE) adequately utilizes such knowledge and experience to design. KBE is a very important approach for increasing the intelligence and speed-up of the time of engineering design. In recent years, the use of genetic algorithms, as an optimization method, enables a rapid development. It searches the optimum solution for a problem using the principle of "survival of the fittest". In the process of mould design, constraint conditions for important parameters are set up. Then, a genetic algorithm is used to code these parameters and search for the optimum (or approximate optimum) solution of these parameters. Compared with general KBE, the KBE based on a genetic algorithm enhances the efficiency of design and the precision of solution. It not only makes use of the knowledge and experience of experts and designers, but also utilizes the great ability and generality of genetic algorithms in searching for an optimum solution.

  17. Genetic engineering of T cell specificity for immunotherapy of cancer.

    PubMed

    Willemsen, Ralph A; Debets, Reno; Chames, Patrick; Bolhuis, Reinder L H

    2003-01-01

    The ultimate goal of immunotherapy of cancer is to make use of the immune system of patients to eliminate malignant cells. Research has mainly focused on the generation of effective antigen specific T-cell responses because of the general belief that T-cell immunity is essential in controlling tumor growth and protection against viral infections. However, the isolation of antigen specific T cells for therapeutic application is a laborious task and it is often impossible to derive autologous tumor specific T cells to be used for adoptive immunotherapy. Therefore, strategies were developed to genetically transfer tumor specific immune receptors into patients T cells. To this end, chimeric receptors were constructed that comprise antibody fragments specific for tumor associated antigens, linked to genes encoding signaling domains of the T-cell receptor (TCR) or Fc receptor. T cells expressing such chimeric antibody receptors recapitulate the immune specific responses mediated by the introduced receptor. Recently, we introduced chimeric TCR genes into primary human T lymphocytes and demonstrated that these T cell transductants acquired the exquisite major histocompatibility complex (MHC) restricted tumor specificity dictated by the introduced TCR. Importantly, the introduction of chimeric TCR bypasses problems associated with the introduction of nonmodified TCR genes, such as pairing of introduced TCR chains with endogenous TCR chains and unstable TCRalpha expression. A novel strategy which is completely independent of available tumor specific T-cell clones for cloning of the TCR genes was recently used to transfer MHC restricted tumor specificity to T cells. Human "TCR-like" Fab fragments obtained by in vitro selection of Fab phages on soluble peptide/MHC complexes were functionally expressed on human T lymphocytes, resulting in MHC restricted, tumor specific lysis and cytokine production. In addition, affinity maturation of the antibody fragment on Fab phages allows improvement of the tumor cell killing capacity of chimeric Fab receptor engrafted T cells. Developments in retroviral transfer technology now enables the generation of large numbers of antigen specific T cells that can be used for adoptive transfer to cancer patients. In this article we summarize the developments in adoptive T cell immunogenetic therapy and discuss the limitations and perspectives to improve this technology toward clinical application. PMID:12507815

  18. Vicariance and dispersal across an intermittent barrier: population genetic structure of marine animals across the Torres Strait land bridge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mirams, A. G. K.; Treml, E. A.; Shields, J. L.; Liggins, L.; Riginos, C.

    2011-12-01

    Biogeographic barriers, some transitory in duration, are likely to have been important contributing factors to modern marine biodiversity in the Indo-Pacific region. One such barrier was the Torres Strait land bridge between continental Australia and New Guinea that persisted through much of the late Pleistocene and separated Indian and Pacific Ocean taxa. Here, we examine the patterns of mitochondrial DNA diversity for marine animals with present-day distributions spanning the Torres Strait. Specifically, we investigate whether there are concordant signatures across species, consistent with either vicariance or recent colonization from either ocean basin. We survey four species of reef fishes ( Apogon doederleini, Pomacentrus coelestis, Dascyllus trimaculatus, and Acanthurus triostegus) for mtDNA cytochrome oxidase 1 and control region variation and contrast these results to previous mtDNA studies in diverse marine animals with similar distributions. We find substantial genetic partitioning (estimated from F-statistics and coalescent approaches) between Indian and Pacific Ocean populations for many species, consistent with regional persistence through the late Pleistocene in both ocean basins. The species-specific estimates of genetic divergence, however, vary greatly and for reef fishes we estimate substantially different divergence times among species. It is likely that Indian and Pacific Ocean populations have been isolated for multiple glacial cycles for some species, whereas for other species genetic connections have been more recent. Regional estimates of genetic diversity and directionality of gene flow also vary among species. Thus, there is no apparent consistency among historical patterns across the Torres Strait for these co-distributed marine animals.

  19. Genetic Engineering of a Radiation-Resistant Bacterium for Biodegradation of Mixed Wastes

    SciTech Connect

    Lidstrom, Mary E.

    2000-06-01

    The mixture of toxic chemicals, heavy metals, halogenated solvents and radionuclides in many DOE waste materials presents a challenging problem for separating the different species and disposing of individual contaminants. One approach for dealing with mixed wastes is to genetically engineer the radiation-resistant bacterium, Deinococcus radiodurans to survive in and detoxify DOE's mixed waste streams, and to develop process parameters for treating mixed wastes with such constructed strains. The goal for this project is to develop a suite of genetic tools for Deinococcus radiodurans and to use these tools to construct and test stable strains for detoxification of haloorganics in mixed wastes.

  20. Genetic Engineering of a Radiation-Resistant Bacterium for Biodegradation of Mixed Wastes

    SciTech Connect

    Lidstrom, Mary E.

    2001-06-11

    The mixture of toxic chemicals, heavy metals, halogenated solvents and radionuclides in many DOE waste materials presents a challenging problem for separating the different species and disposing of individual contaminants. One approach for dealing with mixed wastes is to genetically engineer the radiation-resistant bacterium, Deinococcus radiodurans to survive in and detoxify DOE's mixed waste streams, and to develop process parameters for treating mixed wastes with such constructed strains. The goal for this project is to develop a suite of genetic tools for Deinococcus radiodurans and to use these tools to construct and test stable strains for detoxification of haloorganics in mixed wastes.

  1. Genetic Engineering of a Radiation-Resistant Bacterium for Biodegradation of Mixed Wastes

    SciTech Connect

    Lidstrom, Mary E.

    2002-06-10

    The mixture of toxic chemicals, heavy metals, halogenated solvents and radionuclides in many DOE waste materials presents a challenging problem for separating the different species and disposing of individual contaminants. One approach for dealing with mixed wastes is to genetically engineer the radiation-resistant bacterium, Deinococcus radiodurans to survive in and detoxify DOE's mixed waste streams, and to develop process parameters for treating mixed wastes with such constructed strains. The goal for this project is to develop a suite of genetic tools for Deinococcus radiodurans and to use these tools to construct and test stable strains for detoxification of haloorganics in mixed wastes.

  2. Genetic Engineering of a Radiation-Resistant Bacterium for Biodegradation of Mixed Wastes

    SciTech Connect

    Lidstrom, Mary E.

    1999-06-01

    The mixture of toxic chemicals, heavy metals, halogenated solvents and radionuclides in many DOE waste materials presents a challenging problem for separating the different species and disposing of individual contaminants. One approach for dealing with mixed wastes is to genetically engineer the radiation-resistant bacterium, Deinococcus radiodurans to survive in and detoxify DOE's mixed waste streams, and to develop process parameters for treating mixed wastes with such constructed strains. The goal for this project is to develop a suite of genetic tools for Deinococcus radiodurans and to use these tools to construct and test stable strains for detoxification of haloorganics in mixed wastes.

  3. Self-association and modification of a genetically engineered polypeptide

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Top, Ayben

    A genetically synthesized polypeptide and polyethylene glycol (5 kDa or 10 kDa) functionalized forms of its alanine-rich helical domain were characterized. The polypeptide composed of an N-terminal histidine tag, and an alanine-rich domain, denoted as 17H6, has a sequence of: MGH10 SSGHIHM(AAAQEAAAAQAAAQAEAAQAAQ)6AGGYGGMG. 17H6 was originally designed as a scaffold to investigate multivalent interactions after glycosylation through reactive glutamic acid residues. We speculated that the protonation of the glutamic acid residues in these sequences would afford facile opportunities to manipulate their folding and assembly behavior considering the beta-sheet propensities of similar polypeptides at acidic pH. Thus, in the first part of this study, thermal unfolding, reversible self-association, and irreversible aggregation of 17H6 were investigated. Dynamic light scattering, and thermal unfolding measurements indicate that 17H6 spontaneously and reversibly self-associates at an acidic pH and ambient temperature. The resulting multimers have an average hydrodynamic radius of 10-20 nm and reversibly dissociate to monomers upon an increase to pH 7.4. Both free monomer and 17H6 chains within the multimers are beta-helical and folded at ambient and sub-ambient temperatures. Reversible unfolding of the monomer occurs upon heating of solutions at pH 7.4. At pH 2.3, heating first causes incomplete dissociation and unfolding of the constituent chains. Further incubation at an elevated temperature (80C) induces additional structural and morphological changes and results in fibrils with a beta-sheet structure and a width of 5-10 nm (7 nm mean) as observed via transmission electron microscopy (TEM). In the second part, the histidine tag, which imparts solubility to the alanine-rich domain at acidic pH was cleaved. Propionaldehyde-functionalized poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) molecules (5 kDa or 10 kDa) were attached to the N-terminus of the cleaved polypeptide, c17H6, as a hydrophilic block to compare the effect of these solubility tags on the aggregation and conformation behavior of the alanine-rich domain. Circular dichroic spectroscopy showed that the alpha-helical conformation of the alanine-rich domain was conserved in the conjugates below and near ambient temperatures independent of pH. Similarly, no significant difference between the thermal denaturation behavior of the polypeptide and that of the conjugates was observed at neutral pH. At acidic pH, on the other hand, 17H6 exhibited 25% loss in the initial alpha-helical structure upon incubation at 80C for 3 hours followed by the refolding experiments, whereas the initial alpha-helical content of the conjugates did not change. Comparison of the apparent melting temperatures ( 54C for 17H6 and PEG5K-c17H6 and 51C for PEG10K-c17H6) indicated that high temperature stability of the conjugates is not due to the stabilization of the native alpha-helical conformation upon PEGylation. Kinetic experiments at 80 aC for prolonged intervals indicated that PEGylation slowed down the rate of beta-sheet formation and reduced apparent cooperativity. These findings suggest that improved stability of the conjugates at acidic pH is due to the stabilization of the intermediate structures (which is likely to be random coil or early stage of beta-sheet structures) that form prior to the aggregation by reducing the interactions between these intermediates. In contrast to the polypeptide fibrils with 7 nm width, TEM images of the conjugates incubated at 80C for 18 hours showed fibrillar structures with a width of 20-30 nm. Thus, it is likely that PEG conjugation also interferes to the arrangement of the polypeptide chains during or prior to the fibril formation. In the third part of this study, the aggregates of the polypeptide and the PEG-polypeptide conjugates that form at the physiological or sub-physiological temperatures and an acidic pH were characterized in detail via dynamic light scattering (DLS), small angle neutron scattering (SANS) and cryogenic transmission electro

  4. Ecologically acceptable strategy for the use of genetically engineered baculovirus pesticides. Book chapter

    SciTech Connect

    Wood, H.A.; Hughes, P.R.; van Beek, N.; Hamblin, M.

    1990-01-01

    The basis for the first U.S. Environmental Protection Agency approval for the field release of a genetically-engineered virus has been to take advantage of the biological properties of baculovirus in such a way that an engineered virus could possess enhanced pesticidal properties but, at the same time, would pose no environmental or health hazards. The ultimate goal of these investigations is to reduce the agricultural requirement for synthetic chemical pesticides through the development of viral pesticides with enhanced pesticidal properties.

  5. Using HexSim to link demography and genetics in animal and plant simulations

    EPA Science Inventory

    Simulation models are essential for understanding the effects of land management practices and environmental drivers, including landscape change, shape population genetic structure and persistence probabilities. The emerging field of eco-evolutionary modeling is beginning to dev...

  6. Genetic engineering of woody plants: current and future targets in a stressful environment.

    PubMed

    Osakabe, Yuriko; Kajita, Shinya; Osakabe, Keishi

    2011-06-01

    Abiotic stress is a major factor in limiting plant growth and productivity. Environmental degradation, such as drought and salinity stresses, will become more severe and widespread in the world. To overcome severe environmental stress, plant biotechnologies, such as genetic engineering in woody plants, need to be implemented. The adaptation of plants to environmental stress is controlled by cascades of molecular networks including cross-talk with other stress signaling mechanisms. The present review focuses on recent studies concerning genetic engineering in woody plants for the improvement of the abiotic stress responses. Furthermore, it highlights the recent advances in the understanding of molecular responses to stress. The review also summarizes the basis of a molecular mechanism for cell wall biosynthesis and the plant hormone responses to regulate tree growth and biomass in woody plants. This would facilitate better understanding of the control programs of biomass production under stressful conditions. PMID:21288247

  7. Genetically Engineered Plant Viral Nanoparticles Direct Neural Cells Differentiation and Orientation.

    PubMed

    Feng, Sheng; Lu, Lin; Zan, Xingjie; Wu, Yehong; Lin, Yuan; Wang, Qian

    2015-09-01

    An important aim of tissue engineering is to design biomimetic materials with specific cell binding motifs and precisely controlled structural organization, thereby providing biochemical and physical cues for desired cellular behaviors. Previously, our group generated genetically modified tobacco mosaic virus (TMV) displaying integrin binding motifs, RGD1, RGD7, PSHRN3, P15, and DGEA. The resulting rod-like virus particles displaying integrin binding motifs were biocompatible with Neuro 2A (N2a), a mouse neural crest-derived cell line, and could promote the neurite outgrowth of N2a. The genetically modified viruses could be assembled with aligned orientation in the capillary by applying a shear force. The resulting aligned substrates were able to dictate directional neurite outgrowth of N2a cells. Therefore, this method could be potentially applied for neural tissue engineering, as a neural conduit for repairing peripheral nerve injuries. PMID:26247572

  8. Application of genetically engineered microbial whole-cell biosensors for combined chemosensing.

    PubMed

    He, Wei; Yuan, Sheng; Zhong, Wen-Hui; Siddikee, Md Ashaduzzaman; Dai, Chuan-Chao

    2016-02-01

    The progress of genetically engineered microbial whole-cell biosensors for chemosensing and monitoring has been developed in the last 20years. Those biosensors respond to target chemicals and produce output signals, which offer a simple and alternative way of assessment approaches. As actual pollution caused by human activities usually contains a combination of different chemical substances, how to employ those biosensors to accurately detect real contaminant samples and evaluate biological effects of the combined chemicals has become a realistic object of environmental researches. In this review, we outlined different types of the recent method of genetically engineered microbial whole-cell biosensors for combined chemical evaluation, epitomized their detection performance, threshold, specificity, and application progress that have been achieved up to now. We also discussed the applicability and limitations of this biosensor technology and analyzed the optimum conditions for their environmental assessment in a combined way. PMID:26615397

  9. Biosynthesis and characterization of CdS quantum dots in genetically engineered Escherichia coli

    PubMed Central

    Mi, Congcong; Wang, Yanyan; Zhang, Jingpu; Huang, Huaiqing; Xu, Linru; Wang, Shuo; Fang, Xuexun; Fang, Jin; Mao, Chuanbin; Xu, Shukun

    2011-01-01

    Quantum dots (QDs) were prepared in genetically engineered Escherichia coli (E. coli) through the introduction of foreign genes encoding a CdS binding peptide. The CdS QDs were successfully separated from the bacteria through two methods, lysis and freezingthawing of cells, and purified with an anion-exchange resin. High-resolution transmission electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction, luminescence spectroscopy, and energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy were applied to characterize the as-prepared CdS QDs. The effects of reactant concentrations, bacteria incubation times, and reaction times on QD growth were systematically investigated. Our work demonstrates that genetically engineered bacteria can be used to synthesize QDs. The biologically synthesized QDs are expected to be more biocompatible probes in bio-labeling and imaging. PMID:21458508

  10. Genetic diversity of laboratory gray short-tailed opossums (Monodelphis domestica): effect of newly introduced wild-caught animals.

    PubMed

    van Oorschot, R A; Williams-Blangero, S; VandeBerg, J L

    1992-06-01

    The colony of gray, short-tailed opossums (Monodelphis domestica) at the Southwest Foundation for Biomedical Research, the primary supplier of this species for research purposes, was founded with nine animals trapped in 1978 in the state of Pernambuco, Brazil. Since 1984, 14 newly acquired founders from the state of Paraiba, Brazil have contributed to the gene pool of the colony. The animals from Paraiba and their descendants are significantly larger than the founders from Pernambuco and their descendants. The two groups also differ significantly in several measurements of morphologic traits. The changes in proportional contribution of each founder to the colony, and changes in inbreeding coefficients during the colony's history, are evaluated. Using previously established markers and three newly identified markers (ACP2, APRT, and DIA1), we show that the Paraiba-derived animals differ significantly from the original founders in allele frequencies and heterozygosity. The genetic diversity of the colony has been substantially increased by acquisition of the new founders from Paraiba. The colony is highly polymorphic, with 22.2% of loci surveyed by protein electrophoresis being variable. We conclude that the genetic differences between populations and among projects within the colony should be considered in future colony management procedures and in selection of experimental subjects. PMID:1320155

  11. Potential Large Animal Models for Gene Therapy of Human Genetic Diseases of Immune and Blood Cell Systems

    PubMed Central

    Bauer, Thomas R.; Adler, Rima L.; Hickstein, Dennis D.

    2009-01-01

    Genetic mutations involving the cellular components of the hematopoietic system—red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets—manifest clinically as anemia, infection, and bleeding. Although gene targeting has recapitulated many of these diseases in mice, these murine homologues are limited as translational models by their small size and brief life span as well as the fact that mutations induced by gene targeting do not always faithfully reflect the clinical manifestations of such mutations in humans. Many of these limitations can be overcome by identifying large animals with genetic diseases of the hematopoietic system corresponding to their human disease counterparts. In this article, we describe human diseases of the cellular components of the hematopoietic system that have counterparts in large animal species, in most cases carrying mutations in the same gene (CD18 in leukocyte adhesion deficiency) or genes in interacting proteins (DNA cross-link repair 1C protein and protein kinase, DNA-activated, catalytic polypeptide in radiation-sensitive severe combined immunodeficiency). Furthermore, we describe the potential of these animal models to serve as disease-specific, preclinical models for testing the efficacy and safety of clinical interventions such as hematopoietic stem cell transplantation or gene therapy approaches before their use in humans with the corresponding disease. PMID:19293460

  12. [Genetic engineering technologies of stimulating angiogenesis as an innovation trend in angiology and vascular surgery].

    PubMed

    Gavrilenko, A V; Voronov, D A

    2015-01-01

    Presented herein is a review of the principles, fundamental concepts, and possibilities of genetic engineering technologies of stimulating angiogenesis for treatment of patients with lower limb chronic ischaemia. This is followed by a detailed discussion of the structure and results of Russian and foreign studies on this direction, also considering the causes of differences of their results. Outlined is a circle of clinical situations in relation to which these technologies may be regarded as most promising. PMID:26035559

  13. [Genetic engineering and assisted reproduction techniques in man: a framework for sociologic analysis].

    PubMed

    Snchez Morales, M R

    1999-01-01

    The possibilities opened up by genetic engineering and assisted reproduction techniques require reflection by sociologists and extensive public debate. In view of their potential as factors of social change, evaluation and control are warranted. They can be viable only if transparent and through public co-responsibility, for which an exchange of views is needed between all those who play a part in the development of said techniques. This dialogue must be wholly interdisciplinary and democratic. PMID:10822660

  14. A portable expression resource for engineering cross-species genetic circuits and pathways

    PubMed Central

    Kushwaha, Manish; Salis, Howard M.

    2015-01-01

    Genetic circuits and metabolic pathways can be reengineered to allow organisms to process signals and manufacture useful chemicals. However, their functions currently rely on organism-specific regulatory parts, fragmenting synthetic biology and metabolic engineering into host-specific domains. To unify efforts, here we have engineered a cross-species expression resource that enables circuits and pathways to reuse the same genetic parts, while functioning similarly across diverse organisms. Our engineered system combines mixed feedback control loops and cross-species translation signals to autonomously self-regulate expression of an orthogonal polymerase without host-specific promoters, achieving nontoxic and tuneable gene expression in diverse Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. Combining 50 characterized system variants with mechanistic modelling, we show how the cross-species expression resource's dynamics, capacity and toxicity are controlled by the control loops' architecture and feedback strengths. We also demonstrate one application of the resource by reusing the same genetic parts to express a biosynthesis pathway in both model and non-model hosts. PMID:26184393

  15. Small-scale field test of the genetically engineered lacZY marker

    SciTech Connect

    Hattemer-Frey, H.A.; Brandt, E.J.; Travis, C.C. )

    1990-06-01

    Commercial genetic engineering is advancing into areas that require the small-scale introduction of genetically engineered microorganisms (GEMs) to better quantify variables that affect microorganism distribution and survival and to document potential long-term consequences. A recombinant DNA marker system, the lacZY marker, developed by the Monsanto Agricultural Co., enables the distribution and fate of marked fluorescent pseudomonad organisms to be monitored under actual field conditions. Critical evaluation of GEMs under field conditions is imperative if plant-beneficial effects are to be correlated with organism release. This paper evaluates the effectiveness of this marker system and its ability to facilitate the assessment of risks associated with deliberate environmental introductions of genetically engineered microorganisms. Results of prerelease contained growth chamber and field experiments demonstrated that: (1) the scientific risk assessment methodology adopted by Monsanto and approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency was appropriate and comprehensive; (2) the deliberate introduction of a GEM did not pose unacceptable or unforeseen risks to human health or the environment; (3) the lacZY marker is an effective environmental tracking tool; and (4) regulatory oversight should reflect the expected risk and not be excessively burdensome for all GEMs.

  16. Concise review: genetically engineered stem cell therapy targeting angiogenesis and tumor stroma in gastrointestinal malignancy.

    PubMed

    Keung, Emily Z; Nelson, Peter J; Conrad, Claudius

    2013-02-01

    Cell-based gene therapy holds considerable promise for the treatment of human malignancy. Genetically engineered cells if delivered to sites of disease could alleviate symptoms or even cure cancer through expression of therapeutic or suicide transgene products. Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), nonhematopoietic multipotent cells found primarily in bone marrow, have garnered particular interest as potential tumor-targeting vehicles due to their innate tumortropic homing properties. However, recent strategies go further than simply using MSCs as vehicles and use the stem cell-specific genetic make-up to restrict transgene expression to tumorigenic environments using tumor-tissue specific promoters. This addresses one of the concerns with this novel therapy that nonselective stem cell-based therapy could induce cancer rather than treat it. Even minimal off-target effects can be deleterious, motivating recent strategies to not only enhance MSC homing but also engineer them to make their antitumor effect selective to sites of malignancy. This review will summarize the advances made in the past decade toward developing novel cell-based cancer therapies using genetically engineered MSCs with a focus on strategies to achieve and enhance tumor specificity and their application to targeting gastrointestinal malignancies such as hepatocellular carcinoma and pancreatic adenocarcinoma. PMID:23132810

  17. Use of bioluminescence for detection of genetically engineered microorganisms released into the environment. [Xanthomonas campestris

    SciTech Connect

    Shaw, J.J.; Dane, F.; Geiger, D.; Kloepper, J.W. )

    1992-01-01

    The persistence and movement of strain JS414 of Xanthomonas campestris pv. campestris, which was genetically engineered to bioluminesce, were monitored during a limited field introduction. Bioluminescence and traditional dilution plate counts were determined. Strain JS414 was applied to cabbage plants and surrounding soil by mist inoculation, by wound inoculation, by scattering infested debris among plants, and by incorporating bacteria into the soil. Bioluminescent X. campestris pv. campestris was detected in plant samples and in the rhizosphere up to 6 weeks after inoculation. Movement to uninoculated plants was detected on one occasion, but movement from the immediate release area was not detected. Strain JS414 was detected in soil samples beneath mist- and wound-inoculated plants only at intentionally infested locations and in aerial samples only on the day of inoculation. The authors bioluminescence methods proved to be as sensitive as plating methods for detecting the genetically engineered microorganisms in environmental samples. Their results demonstrate that transgenic incorporation of the luxCDABE operon provides a non-labor-intensive, sensitive detection method for monitoring genetically engineered microorganisms in nature.

  18. Tipping Points in Seaweed Genetic Engineering: Scaling Up Opportunities in the Next Decade

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Hanzhi; Qin, Song

    2014-01-01

    Seaweed genetic engineering is a transgenic expression system with unique features compared with those of heterotrophic prokaryotes and higher plants. This study discusses several newly sequenced seaweed nuclear genomes and the necessity that research on vector design should consider endogenous promoters, codon optimization, and gene copy number. Seaweed viruses and artificial transposons can be applied as transformation methods after acquiring a comprehensive understanding of the mechanism of viral infections in seaweeds and transposon patterns in seaweed genomes. After cultivating transgenic algal cells and tissues in a photobioreactor, a biosafety assessment of genetically modified (GM) seaweeds must be conducted before open-sea application. We propose a set of programs for the evaluation of gene flow from GM seaweeds to local/geographical environments. The effective implementation of such programs requires fundamentally systematic and interdisciplinary studies on algal physiology and genetics, marine hydrology, reproductive biology, and ecology. PMID:24857961

  19. Improved metal cluster deposition on a genetically engineered tobacco mosaic virus template.

    PubMed

    Lee, Sang-Yup; Royston, Elizabeth; Culver, James N; Harris, Michael T

    2005-07-01

    Improved depositions of various metal clusters onto a biomolecular template were achieved using a genetically engineered tobacco mosaic virus (TMV). Wild-type TMV was genetically altered to display multiple solid metal binding sites through the insertion of two cysteine residues within the amino-terminus of the virus coat protein. Gold, silver, and palladium clusters synthesized through in situ chemical reductions could be readily deposited onto the genetically modified template via the exposed cysteine-derived thiol groups. Metal cluster coatings on the cysteine-modified template were more densely deposited and stable than similar coatings on the unmodified wild-type template. Combined, these results confirm that the introduction of cysteine residues onto the outer surface of the TMV coat protein enhances the usefulness of this virus as a biotemplate for the deposition of metal clusters. PMID:21727464

  20. Improved metal cluster deposition on a genetically engineered tobacco mosaic virus template

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Sang-Yup; Royston, Elizabeth; Culver, James N.; Harris, Michael T.

    2005-07-01

    Improved depositions of various metal clusters onto a biomolecular template were achieved using a genetically engineered tobacco mosaic virus (TMV). Wild-type TMV was genetically altered to display multiple solid metal binding sites through the insertion of two cysteine residues within the amino-terminus of the virus coat protein. Gold, silver, and palladium clusters synthesized through in situ chemical reductions could be readily deposited onto the genetically modified template via the exposed cysteine-derived thiol groups. Metal cluster coatings on the cysteine-modified template were more densely deposited and stable than similar coatings on the unmodified wild-type template. Combined, these results confirm that the introduction of cysteine residues onto the outer surface of the TMV coat protein enhances the usefulness of this virus as a biotemplate for the deposition of metal clusters.

  1. Tipping points in seaweed genetic engineering: scaling up opportunities in the next decade.

    PubMed

    Lin, Hanzhi; Qin, Song

    2014-05-01

    Seaweed genetic engineering is a transgenic expression system with unique features compared with those of heterotrophic prokaryotes and higher plants. This study discusses several newly sequenced seaweed nuclear genomes and the necessity that research on vector design should consider endogenous promoters, codon optimization, and gene copy number. Seaweed viruses and artificial transposons can be applied as transformation methods after acquiring a comprehensive understanding of the mechanism of viral infections in seaweeds and transposon patterns in seaweed genomes. After cultivating transgenic algal cells and tissues in a photobioreactor, a biosafety assessment of genetically modified (GM) seaweeds must be conducted before open-sea application. We propose a set of programs for the evaluation of gene flow from GM seaweeds to local/geographical environments. The effective implementation of such programs requires fundamentally systematic and interdisciplinary studies on algal physiology and genetics, marine hydrology, reproductive biology, and ecology. PMID:24857961

  2. A CRISPR-Cas9 System for Genetic Engineering of Filamentous Fungi

    PubMed Central

    Ndvig, Christina S.; Nielsen, Jakob B.; Kogle, Martin E.; Mortensen, Uffe H.

    2015-01-01

    The number of fully sequenced fungal genomes is rapidly increasing. Since genetic tools are poorly developed for most filamentous fungi, it is currently difficult to employ genetic engineering for understanding the biology of these fungi and to fully exploit them industrially. For that reason there is a demand for developing versatile methods that can be used to genetically manipulate non-model filamentous fungi. To facilitate this, we have developed a CRISPR-Cas9 based system adapted for use in filamentous fungi. The system is simple and versatile, as RNA guided mutagenesis can be achieved by transforming a target fungus with a single plasmid. The system currently contains four CRISPR-Cas9 vectors, which are equipped with commonly used fungal markers allowing for selection in a broad range of fungi. Moreover, we have developed a script that allows identification of protospacers that target gene homologs in multiple species to facilitate introduction of common mutations in different filamentous fungi. With these tools we have performed RNA-guided mutagenesis in six species of which one has not previously been genetically engineered. Moreover, for a wild-type Aspergillus aculeatus strain, we have used our CRISPR Cas9 system to generate a strain that contains an AACU_pyrG marker and demonstrated that the resulting strain can be used for iterative gene targeting. PMID:26177455

  3. Genetic studies at the receptor level: investigations in human twins and experimental animals.

    PubMed

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

    1986-01-01

    In receptors, as in enzymes, quantitative as well as qualitative genetic variation may exist. Studies in inbred strains of mice have shown for various receptors that the receptor density as determined by Bmax values is under genetic control. In healthy adult twins we have shown that the density of alpha-adrenoceptors on platelets is also influenced by genetic factors, since monozygotic twins were much more similar to one another than dizygotic twins. However, Bmax values are up-regulated and down-regulated by endogenous neurotransmitters and pharmacologically active agents. Thus, receptor densities are under considerable regulatory influences. Bmax values therefore reflect regulatory mechanisms rather than innate characteristics of the receptor protein. In another twin study we failed to find evidence for a genetic influence on the density of imipramine-binding sites on platelets. Since qualitative variation (polymorphism) is well known in enzymes, it may also apply to receptors. Qualitative differences in the receptor protein within one species would be of particular interest because of possible functional implications. As a first approach we examined central benzodiazepine receptors by photoaffinity labelling and sodium dodecyl sulphate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. A comparison of fish, frog, chicken, mouse, rat and calf led to the detection of variation between species. Investigations in five inbred mouse and rat strains have not so far revealed genetic variation in benzodiazepine receptors. Nevertheless variation may be detectable by more sensitive methods such as peptide mapping after limited proteolysis or two-dimensional electrophoresis. PMID:3028728

  4. Environmental risk assessment of a genetically-engineered microorganism: Erwinia carotovora

    SciTech Connect

    Orvos, D.R.

    1989-01-01

    Environmental use of genetically-engineered microorganisms (GEMs) has raised concerns over potential ecological impact. Development of microcosm systems useful in preliminary testing for risk assessment will provide useful information for predicting potential structural, functional, and genetic effects of GEM release. This study was executed to develop techniques that may be useful in risk assessment and microbial ecology, to ascertain which parameters are useful in determining risk and to predict risk from releasing an engineered strain of Erwinia carotovora. A terrestrial microcosm system for use in GEM risk assessment studies was developed for use in assessing alterations of microbial structure and function that may be caused by introducing the engineered strain of E. carotovora. This strain is being developed for use as a biological control agent for plant soft rot. Parameters that were monitored included survival and intraspecific competition of E. carotovora, structural effects upon both total bacterial populations and numbers of selected bacterial genera, effects upon activities of dehydrogenase and alkaline phosphatase, effects upon soil nutrients, and potential for gene transfer into or out of the engineered strain.

  5. Reduction of Sample Size Requirements by Bilateral Versus Unilateral Research Designs in Animal Models for Cartilage Tissue Engineering

    PubMed Central

    Orth, Patrick; Zurakowski, David; Alini, Mauro; Cucchiarini, Magali

    2013-01-01

    Advanced tissue engineering approaches for articular cartilage repair in the knee joint rely on translational animal models. In these investigations, cartilage defects may be established either in one joint (unilateral design) or in both joints of the same animal (bilateral design). We hypothesized that a lower intraindividual variability following the bilateral strategy would reduce the number of required joints. Standardized osteochondral defects were created in the trochlear groove of 18 rabbits. In 12 animals, defects were produced unilaterally (unilateral design; n=12 defects), while defects were created bilaterally in 6 animals (bilateral design; n=12 defects). After 3 weeks, osteochondral repair was evaluated histologically applying an established grading system. Based on intra- and interindividual variabilities, required sample sizes for the detection of discrete differences in the histological score were determined for both study designs (?=0.05, ?=0.20). Coefficients of variation (%CV) of the total histological score values were 1.9-fold increased following the unilateral design when compared with the bilateral approach (26 versus 14%CV). The resulting numbers of joints needed to treat were always higher for the unilateral design, resulting in an up to 3.9-fold increase in the required number of experimental animals. This effect was most pronounced for the detection of small-effect sizes and estimating large standard deviations. The data underline the possible benefit of bilateral study designs for the decrease of sample size requirements for certain investigations in articular cartilage research. These findings might also be transferred to other scoring systems, defect types, or translational animal models in the field of cartilage tissue engineering. PMID:23510128

  6. Genetically engineered theranostic mesenchymal stem cells for the evaluation of the anticancer efficacy of enzyme/prodrug systems.

    PubMed

    Nouri, Faranak Salman; Wang, Xing; Hatefi, Arash

    2015-02-28

    Over the past decade, various enzyme/prodrug systems such as thymidine kinase/ganciclovir (TK/GCV), yeast cytosine deaminase/5-fluorocytosine (yCD/5-FC) and nitroreductase/CB1954 (NTR/CB1954) have been used for stem cell mediated suicide gene therapy of cancer. Yet, no study has been conducted to compare and demonstrate the advantages and disadvantages of using one system over another. Knowing that each enzyme/prodrug system has its own strengths and weaknesses, we utilized mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) as a medium to perform for the first time a comparative study that illustrated the impact of subtle differences among these systems on the therapeutic outcome. For therapeutic purposes, we first genetically modified MSCs to stably express a panel of four suicide genes including TK (TK007 and TK(SR39) mutants), yeast cytosine deaminase:uracil phosphoribosyltransferase (yCD:UPRT) and nitroreductase (NTR). Then, we evaluated the anticancer efficacies of the genetically engineered MSCs in vitro and in vivo by using SKOV3 cell line which is sensitive to all four enzyme/prodrug systems. In addition, all MSCs were engineered to stably express luciferase gene making them suitable for quantitative imaging and dose-response relationship studies in animals. Considering the limitations imposed by the prodrugs' bystander effects, our findings show that yCD:UPRT/5-FC is the most effective enzyme/prodrug system among the ones tested. Our findings also demonstrate that theranostic MSCs are a reliable medium for the side-by-side evaluation and screening of the enzyme/prodrug systems at the preclinical level. The results of this study could help scientists who utilize cell-based, non-viral or viral vectors for suicide gene therapy of cancer make more informed decisions when choosing enzyme/prodrug systems. PMID:25575867

  7. Genetically Engineered Theranostic Mesenchymal Stem Cells for the Evaluation of the Anticancer Efficacy of Enzyme/Prodrug Systems

    PubMed Central

    Nouri, Faranak Salman; Wang, Xing; Hatefi, Arash

    2015-01-01

    Over the past decade, various enzyme/prodrug systems such as thymidine kinase/ganciclovir (TK/GCV), yeast cytosine deaminase/5-fluorocytosine (yCD/5-FC) and nitroreductase/CB1954 (NTR/CB1954) have been used for stem cell mediated suicide gene therapy of cancer. Yet, no study has been conducted to compare and demonstrate the advantages and disadvantages of using one system over another. Knowing that each enzyme/prodrug system has its own strengths and weaknesses, we utilized mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) as a medium to perform for the first time a comparative study that illustrated the impact of subtle differences among these systems on the therapeutic outcome. For therapeutic purposes, we first genetically modified MSCs to stably express a panel of four suicide genes including TK (TK007 and TKSR39 mutants), yeast cytosine deaminase: uracil phosphoribosyltransferase (yCD:UPRT) and nitroreductase (NTR). Then, we evaluated the anticancer efficacies of the genetically engineered MSCs in vitro and in vivo by using SKOV3 cell line which is sensitive to all four enzyme/prodrug systems. In addition, all MSCs were engineered to stably express luciferase gene making them suitable for quantitative imaging and dose-response relationship studies in animals. Considering the limitations imposed by the prodrugs bystander effects, our findings show that yCD:UPRT/5-FC is the most effective enzyme/prodrug system among the ones tested. Our findings also demonstrate that theranostic MSCs are a reliable medium for the side-by-side evaluation and screening of the enzyme/prodrug systems at the preclinical level. The results of this study could help scientists who utilize cell-based, non-viral or viral vectors for suicide gene therapy of cancer make more informed decisions when choosing enzyme/prodrug systems. PMID:25575867

  8. INTACT SOIL-CORE MICROCOSMS FOR EVALUATING THE FATE AND ECOLOGICAL IMPACT OF THE RELEASE OF GENETICALLY ENGINEERED MICROORGANISMS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Intact soil-core microcosms were studied to determine their applicability for evaluating the transport, survival and potential ecosystem effects of genetically engineered microorganisms before they are released into the environment. oi1-core microcosms were planted with wheat and...

  9. EVALUATION OF METHODS FOR DETECTING ECOLOGICAL EFFECTS FROM GENETICALLY ENGINEERED MICROORGANISMS AND PEST CONTROL AGENTS IN TERRESTRIAL SYSTEMS

    EPA Science Inventory

    This report summarizes and evaluates research from several laboratories that deals with the detection of ecological effects induced through exposure of microbes or plants to genetically engineered microorganisms (GEMS) and microbial pest control agents (MPCAS) . The development o...

  10. FIELD CALIBRATION OF SOIL-CORE MICROCOSMS FOR EVALUATING FATE AND EFFECTS OF GENETICALLY ENGINEERED MICROORGANISMS IN TERRESTRIAL ECOSYSTEMS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Pacific Northwest Laboratory compared intact soil-core microcosms and the field for ecosystem structural and functional properties after the introduction of a model genetically engineered microorganism (GEM). This project used two distinct microbial types as model GEMs, Gram nega...

  11. A CAL Program to Teach the Basic Principles of Genetic Engineering--A Change from the Traditional Approach.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dewhurst, D. G.; And Others

    1989-01-01

    An interactive computer-assisted learning program written for the BBC microcomputer to teach the basic principles of genetic engineering is described. Discussed are the hardware requirements software, use of the program, and assessment. (Author/CW)

  12. Ear-Shaped Stable Auricular Cartilage Engineered from Extensively Expanded Chondrocytes in an Immunocompetent Experimental Animal Model.

    PubMed

    Pomerantseva, Irina; Bichara, David A; Tseng, Alan; Cronce, Michael J; Cervantes, Thomas M; Kimura, Anya M; Neville, Craig M; Roscioli, Nick; Vacanti, Joseph P; Randolph, Mark A; Sundback, Cathryn A

    2016-02-01

    Advancement of engineered ear in clinical practice is limited by several challenges. The complex, largely unsupported, three-dimensional auricular neocartilage structure is difficult to maintain. Neocartilage formation is challenging in an immunocompetent host due to active inflammatory and immunological responses. The large number of autologous chondrogenic cells required for engineering an adult human-sized ear presents an additional challenge because primary chondrocytes rapidly dedifferentiate during in vitro culture. The objective of this study was to engineer a stable, human ear-shaped cartilage in an immunocompetent animal model using expanded chondrocytes. The impact of basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) supplementation on achieving clinically relevant expansion of primary sheep chondrocytes by in vitro culture was determined. Chondrocytes expanded in standard medium were either combined with cryopreserved, primary passage 0 chondrocytes at the time of scaffold seeding or used alone as control. Disk and human ear-shaped scaffolds were made from porous collagen; ear scaffolds had an embedded, supporting titanium wire framework. Autologous chondrocyte-seeded scaffolds were implanted subcutaneously in sheep after 2 weeks of in vitro incubation. The quality of the resulting neocartilage and its stability and retention of the original ear size and shape were evaluated at 6, 12, and 20 weeks postimplantation. Neocartilage produced from chondrocytes that were expanded in the presence of bFGF was superior, and its quality improved with increased implantation time. In addition to characteristic morphological cartilage features, its glycosaminoglycan content was high and marked elastin fiber formation was present. The overall shape of engineered ears was preserved at 20 weeks postimplantation, and the dimensional changes did not exceed 10%. The wire frame within the engineered ear was able to withstand mechanical forces during wound healing and neocartilage maturation and prevented shrinkage and distortion. This is the first demonstration of a stable, ear-shaped elastic cartilage engineered from auricular chondrocytes that underwent clinical-scale expansion in an immunocompetent animal over an extended period of time. PMID:26529401

  13. Anatomical Distribution and Genetic Relatedness of Antimicrobial Resistant E. coli from Healthy Companion Animals

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Aims: Escherichia coli have been targeted for studying antimicrobial resistance in companion animals due to opportunistic infections and as a surrogate for resistance patterns in zoonotic organisms. The aim of our study examined antimicrobial resistance in E. coli isolated from various anatomical ...

  14. [Embryos and gametes cryopreservation for genetic resources conservation of laboratory animals].

    PubMed

    Amstislavsky, S Ya; Brusentsev, E Yu; Okotrub, K A; Rozhkova, I N

    2015-01-01

    Article reviews the use of embryos and gametes cryopreservation for cryobanking the laboratory animal species. The special emphasis is made on the mechanisms of cryoinjury and cryoprotection during program freezing and vitrification. The species specific cryobanking problems are discussed and the prospects to overcome these problems are outlined. PMID:26021119

  15. U.S. SWINE GENETIC RESOURCES AND THE NATIONAL ANIMAL GERMPLASM PROGRAM

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The National Animal Germplasm Program (NAGP) has begun to develop cryopreserved germplasm collection for all U.S. swine breeds. In developing these collections the inbreeding trends for pig breeds have been computed. As of 2004, average breed inbreeding levels ranged between 5% and 6% for Duroc, Yor...

  16. Revealing gene function and genetic diversity in plants and animals via TILLING and EcoTILLING

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    With the fairly recent advent of inexpensive, rapid sequencing technologies that continues to improve sequencing efficiency and accuracy, many species of animals, plants, and microbes have complete annotated genome information publicly available. The focus on genomics has thus been shifting from th...

  17. Open Field Release of Genetically Engineered Sterile Male Aedes aegypti in Malaysia

    PubMed Central

    Raduan, Norzahira; Kwee Wee, Lim; Hong Ming, Wong; Guat Ney, Teoh; Rahidah A.A., Siti; Salman, Sawaluddin; Subramaniam, Selvi; Nordin, Oreenaiza; Hanum A.T., Norhaida; Angamuthu, Chandru; Marlina Mansor, Suria; Lees, Rosemary S.; Naish, Neil; Scaife, Sarah; Gray, Pam; Labb, Genevive; Beech, Camilla; Nimmo, Derric; Alphey, Luke; Vasan, Seshadri S.; Han Lim, Lee; Wasi A., Nazni; Murad, Shahnaz

    2012-01-01

    Background Dengue is the most important mosquito-borne viral disease. In the absence of specific drugs or vaccines, control focuses on suppressing the principal mosquito vector, Aedes aegypti, yet current methods have not proven adequate to control the disease. New methods are therefore urgently needed, for example genetics-based sterile-male-release methods. However, this requires that lab-reared, modified mosquitoes be able to survive and disperse adequately in the field. Methodology/Principal Findings Adult male mosquitoes were released into an uninhabited forested area of Pahang, Malaysia. Their survival and dispersal was assessed by use of a network of traps. Two strains were used, an engineered genetically sterile (OX513A) and a wild-type laboratory strain, to give both absolute and relative data about the performance of the modified mosquitoes. The two strains had similar maximum dispersal distances (220 m), but mean distance travelled of the OX513A strain was lower (52 vs. 100 m). Life expectancy was similar (2.0 vs. 2.2 days). Recapture rates were high for both strains, possibly because of the uninhabited nature of the site. Conclusions/Significance After extensive contained studies and regulatory scrutiny, a field release of engineered mosquitoes was safely and successfully conducted in Malaysia. The engineered strain showed similar field longevity to an unmodified counterpart, though in this setting dispersal was reduced relative to the unmodified strain. These data are encouraging for the future testing and implementation of genetic control strategies and will help guide future field use of this and other engineered strains. PMID:22970102

  18. An engineered small RNA-mediated genetic switch based on a ribozyme expression platform.

    PubMed

    Klauser, Benedikt; Hartig, Jrg S

    2013-05-01

    An important requirement for achieving many goals of synthetic biology is the availability of a large repertoire of reprogrammable genetic switches and appropriate transmitter molecules. In addition to engineering genetic switches, the interconnection of individual switches becomes increasingly important for the construction of more complex genetic networks. In particular, RNA-based switches of gene expression have become a powerful tool to post-transcriptionally program genetic circuits. RNAs used for regulatory purposes have the advantage to transmit, sense, process and execute information. We have recently used the hammerhead ribozyme to control translation initiation in a small molecule-dependent fashion. In addition, riboregulators have been constructed in which a small RNA acts as transmitter molecule to control translation of a target mRNA. In this study, we combine both concepts and redesign the hammerhead ribozyme to sense small trans-acting RNAs (taRNAs) as input molecules resulting in repression of translation initiation in Escherichia coli. Importantly, our ribozyme-based expression platform is compatible with previously reported artificial taRNAs, which were reported to act as inducers of gene expression. In addition, we provide several insights into key requirements of riboregulatory systems, including the influences of varying transcriptional induction of the taRNA and mRNA transcripts, 5'-processing of taRNAs, as well as altering the secondary structure of the taRNA. In conclusion, we introduce an RNA-responsive ribozyme-based expression system to the field of artificial riboregulators that can serve as reprogrammable platform for engineering higher-order genetic circuits. PMID:23585277

  19. An engineered small RNA-mediated genetic switch based on a ribozyme expression platform

    PubMed Central

    Klauser, Benedikt; Hartig, Jrg S.

    2013-01-01

    An important requirement for achieving many goals of synthetic biology is the availability of a large repertoire of reprogrammable genetic switches and appropriate transmitter molecules. In addition to engineering genetic switches, the interconnection of individual switches becomes increasingly important for the construction of more complex genetic networks. In particular, RNA-based switches of gene expression have become a powerful tool to post-transcriptionally program genetic circuits. RNAs used for regulatory purposes have the advantage to transmit, sense, process and execute information. We have recently used the hammerhead ribozyme to control translation initiation in a small molecule-dependent fashion. In addition, riboregulators have been constructed in which a small RNA acts as transmitter molecule to control translation of a target mRNA. In this study, we combine both concepts and redesign the hammerhead ribozyme to sense small trans-acting RNAs (taRNAs) as input molecules resulting in repression of translation initiation in Escherichia coli. Importantly, our ribozyme-based expression platform is compatible with previously reported artificial taRNAs, which were reported to act as inducers of gene expression. In addition, we provide several insights into key requirements of riboregulatory systems, including the influences of varying transcriptional induction of the taRNA and mRNA transcripts, 5?-processing of taRNAs, as well as altering the secondary structure of the taRNA. In conclusion, we introduce an RNA-responsive ribozyme-based expression system to the field of artificial riboregulators that can serve as reprogrammable platform for engineering higher-order genetic circuits. PMID:23585277

  20. Small Animal Bone Biomechanics

    PubMed Central

    Vashishth, Deepak

    2008-01-01

    Animal models, in particular mice, offer the possibility of naturally achieving or genetically engineering a skeletal phenotype associated with disease and conducting destructive fracture tests on bone to determine the resulting change in bones mechanical properties. Several recent developments, including nano- and micro- indentation testing, microtensile and microcompressive testing, and bending tests on notched whole bone specimens, offer the possibility to mechanically probe small animal bone and investigate the effects of aging, therapeutic treatments, disease, and genetic variation. In contrast to traditional strength tests on small animal bones, fracture mechanics tests display smaller variation and therefore offer the possibility of reducing sample sizes. This article provides an analysis of what such tests measure and proposes methods to reduce errors associated with testing smaller than ideal specimens. PMID:18672104

  1. Genetic and epigenetic changes involving (retro)transposons in animal hybrids and polyploids.

    PubMed

    Arkhipova, I R; Rodriguez, F

    2013-01-01

    Transposable elements (TEs) are discrete genetic units that have the ability to change their location within chromosomal DNA, and constitute a major and rapidly evolving component of eukaryotic genomes. They can be subdivided into 2 distinct types: retrotransposons, which use an RNA intermediate for transposition, and DNA transposons, which move only as DNA. Rapid advances in genome sequencing significantly improved our understanding of TE roles in genome shaping and restructuring, and studies of transcriptomes and epigenomes shed light on the previously unknown molecular mechanisms underlying genetic and epigenetic TE controls. Knowledge of these control systems may be important for better understanding of reticulate evolution and speciation in the context of bringing different genomes together by hybridization and perturbing the established regulatory balance by ploidy changes. See also sister article focusing on plants by Bento et al. in this themed issue. PMID:23899811

  2. Genetically Engineered Virulent Phage Banks in the Detection and Control of Emergent Pathogenic Bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Blois, Hlne; Iris, Franois

    2010-01-01

    Natural outbreaks of multidrug-resistant microorganisms can cause widespread devastation, and several can be used or engineered as agents of bioterrorism. From a biosecurity standpoint, the capacity to detect and then efficiently control, within hours, the spread and the potential pathological effects of an emergent outbreak, for which there may be no effective antibiotics or vaccines, become key challenges that must be met. We turned to phage engineering as a potentially highly flexible and effective means to both detect and eradicate threats originating from emergent (uncharacterized) bacterial strains. To this end, we developed technologies allowing us to (1) concurrently modify multiple regions within the coding sequence of a gene while conserving intact the remainder of the gene, (2) reversibly interrupt the lytic cycle of an obligate virulent phage (T4) within its host, (3) carry out efficient insertion, by homologous recombination, of any number of engineered genes into the deactivated genomes of a T4 wild-type phage population, and (4) reactivate the lytic cycle, leading to the production of engineered infective virulent recombinant progeny. This allows the production of very large, genetically engineered lytic phage banks containing, in an E. coli host, a very wide spectrum of variants for any chosen phage-associated function, including phage host-range. Screening of such a bank should allow the rapid isolation of recombinant T4 particles capable of detecting (ie, diagnosing), infecting, and destroying hosts belonging to gram-negative bacterial species far removed from the original E. coli host. PMID:20569057

  3. Engineering modular and tunable genetic amplifiers for scaling transcriptional signals in cascaded gene networks

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Baojun; Barahona, Mauricio; Buck, Martin

    2014-01-01

    Synthetic biology aims to control and reprogram signal processing pathways within living cells so as to realize repurposed, beneficial applications. Here we report the design and construction of a set of modular and gain-tunable genetic amplifiers in Escherichia coli capable of amplifying a transcriptional signal with wide tunable-gain control in cascaded gene networks. The devices are engineered using orthogonal genetic components (hrpRS, hrpV and PhrpL) from the hrp (hypersensitive response and pathogenicity) gene regulatory network in Pseudomonas syringae. The amplifiers can linearly scale up to 21-fold the transcriptional input with a large output dynamic range, yet not introducing significant time delay or significant noise during signal amplification. The set of genetic amplifiers achieves different gains and input dynamic ranges by varying the expression levels of the underlying ligand-free activator proteins in the device. As their electronic counterparts, these engineered transcriptional amplifiers can act as fundamental building blocks in the design of biological systems by predictably and dynamically modulating transcriptional signal flows to implement advanced intra- and extra-cellular control functions. PMID:25030903

  4. Genetic engineering of crops: a ray of hope for enhanced food security.

    PubMed

    Gill, Sarvajeet Singh; Gill, Ritu; Tuteja, Renu; Tuteja, Narendra

    2014-01-01

    Crop improvement has been a basic and essential chase since organized cultivation of crops began thousands of years ago. Abiotic stresses as a whole are regarded as the crucial factors restricting the plant species to reach their full genetic potential to deliver desired productivity. The changing global climatic conditions are making them worse and pointing toward food insecurity. Agriculture biotechnology or genetic engineering has allowed us to look into and understand the complex nature of abiotic stresses and measures to improve the crop productivity under adverse conditions. Various candidate genes have been identified and transformed in model plants as well as agriculturally important crop plants to develop abiotic stress-tolerant plants for crop improvement. The views presented here are an attempt toward realizing the potential of genetic engineering for improving crops to better tolerate abiotic stresses in the era of climate change, which is now essential for global food security. There is great urgency in speeding up crop improvement programs that can use modern biotechnological tools in addition to current breeding practices for providing enhanced food security. PMID:24686131

  5. Genetic engineering of crops: a ray of hope for enhanced food security

    PubMed Central

    Gill, Sarvajeet Singh; Gill, Ritu; Tuteja, Renu; Tuteja, Narendra

    2014-01-01

    Crop improvement has been a basic and essential chase since organized cultivation of crops began thousands of years ago. Abiotic stresses as a whole are regarded as the crucial factors restricting the plant species to reach their full genetic potential to deliver desired productivity. The changing global climatic conditions are making them worse and pointing toward food insecurity. Agriculture biotechnology or genetic engineering has allowed us to look into and understand the complex nature of abiotic stresses and measures to improve the crop productivity under adverse conditions. Various candidate genes have been identified and transformed in model plants as well as agriculturally important crop plants to develop abiotic stress-tolerant plants for crop improvement. The views presented here are an attempt toward realizing the potential of genetic engineering for improving crops to better tolerate abiotic stresses in the era of climate change, which is now essential for global food security. There is great urgency in speeding up crop improvement programs that can use modern biotechnological tools in addition to current breeding practices for providing enhanced food security. PMID:24686131

  6. Field application of a genetically engineered microorganism for polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon bioremediation process monitoring and control

    SciTech Connect

    Sayler, G.S.; Cox, C.D.; Ripp, S.; Nivens, D.E.; Werner, C.; Ahn, Y.; Matrubutham, U.; Burlage, R.

    1998-11-01

    On October 30, 1996, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) commenced the first test release of genetically engineered microorganisms (GEMs) for use in bioremediation. The specific objectives of the investigation were multifaceted and include (1) testing the hypothesis that a GEM can be successfully introduced and maintained in a bioremediation process, (2) testing the concept of using, at the field scale, reporter organisms for direct bioremediation process monitoring and control, and (3) acquiring data that can be used in risk assessment decision making and protocol development for future field release applications of GEMs. The genetically engineered strain under investigation is Pseudomonas fluorescens strain HK44 (King et al., 1990). The original P. fluorescens parent strain was isolated from polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) contaminated manufactured gas plant soil. Thus, this bacterium is able to biodegrade naphthalene (as well as other substituted naphthalenes and other PAHs) and is able to function as a living bioluminescent reporter for the presence of naphthalene contamination, its bioavailability, and the functional process of biodegradation. A unique component of this field investigation was the availability of an array of large subsurface soil lysimeters. This article describes the experience associated with the release of a genetically modified microorganism, the lysimeter facility and its associated instrumentation, as well as representative data collected during the first eighteen months of operation.

  7. An animal welfare perspective on animal testing of GMO crops.

    PubMed

    Kolar, Roman; Rusche, Brigitte

    2008-01-01

    The public discussion on the introduction of agro-genetic engineering focuses mainly on economical, ecological and human health aspects. The fact is neglected that laboratory animals must suffer before either humans or the environment are affected. However, numerous animal experiments are conducted for toxicity testing and authorisation of genetically modified plants in the European Union. These are ethically questionable, because death and suffering of the animals for purely commercial purposes are accepted. Therefore, recent political initiatives to further increase animal testing for GMO crops must be regarded highly critically. Based on concrete examples this article demonstrates that animal experiments, on principle, cannot provide the expected protection of users and consumers despite all efforts to standardise, optimise or extend them. PMID:18551237

  8. Genetic and metabolic engineering of microorganisms for the development of new flavor compounds from terpenic substrates.

    PubMed

    Bution, Murillo L; Molina, Gustavo; Abraho, Meissa R E; Pastore, Glucia M

    2015-01-01

    Throughout human history, natural products have been the basis for the discovery and development of therapeutics, cosmetic and food compounds used in industry. Many compounds found in natural organisms are rather difficult to chemically synthesize and to extract in large amounts, and in this respect, genetic and metabolic engineering are playing an increasingly important role in the production of these compounds, such as new terpenes and terpenoids, which may potentially be used to create aromas in industry. Terpenes belong to the largest class of natural compounds, are produced by all living organisms and play a fundamental role in human nutrition, cosmetics and medicine. Recent advances in systems biology and synthetic biology are allowing us to perform metabolic engineering at the whole-cell level, thus enabling the optimal design of microorganisms for the efficient production of drugs, cosmetic and food additives. This review describes the recent advances made in the genetic and metabolic engineering of the terpenes pathway with a particular focus on systems biotechnology. PMID:24494701

  9. A tunable and reversible platform for the intracellular formation of genetically engineered protein microdomains.

    PubMed

    Pastuszka, Martha K; Janib, Siti M; Weitzhandler, Isaac; Okamoto, Curtis T; Hamm-Alvarez, Sarah; Mackay, J Andrew

    2012-11-12

    From mitochondria to the nuclear envelope, the controlled assembly of micro- and nanostructures is essential for life; however, the level at which we can deliberately engineer the assembly of microstructures within intracellular environments remains primitive. To overcome this obstacle, we present a platform to reversibly assemble genetically engineered protein microdomains (GEPMs) on the time scale of minutes within living cells. Biologically inspired from the human protein tropoelastin, these protein polymers form a secondary aqueous phase above a tunable transition temperature. This assembly process is easily manipulated to occur at or near physiological temperature by adjusting molecular weight and hydrophobicity. We fused protein polymers to green fluorescent protein (GFP) to visualize their behavior within the cytoplasm. While soluble, these polymers have a similar intracellular diffusion constant as cytosolic proteins at 7.4 ?m(2)/s; however, above their phase transition temperature, the proteins form distinct microdomains (0.1-2 ?m) with a reduced diffusion coefficient of 1.1 ?m(2)/s. Microdomain assembly and disassembly are both rapid processes with half-lives of 3.8 and 1.0 min, respectively. Via selection of the protein polymer, the assembly temperature is tunable between 20 and 40 C. This approach may be useful to control intracellular formation of genetically engineered proteins and protein complexes into concentrated microdomains. PMID:23088632

  10. Genetically engineering cyanobacteria to convert CO?, water, and light into the long-chain hydrocarbon farnesene.

    PubMed

    Halfmann, Charles; Gu, Liping; Gibbons, William; Zhou, Ruanbao

    2014-12-01

    Genetically engineered cyanobacteria offer a shortcut to convert CO2 and H2O directly into biofuels and high value chemicals for societal benefits. Farnesene, a long-chained hydrocarbon (C15H24), has many applications in lubricants, cosmetics, fragrances, and biofuels. However, a method for the sustainable, photosynthetic production of farnesene has been lacking. Here, we report the photosynthetic production of farnesene by the filamentous cyanobacterium Anabaena sp. PCC 7120 using only CO2, mineralized water, and light. A codon-optimized farnesene synthase gene was chemically synthesized and then expressed in the cyanobacterium, enabling it to synthesize farnesene through its endogenous non-mevalonate (MEP) pathway. Farnesene excreted from the engineered cyanobacterium volatilized into the flask head space and was recovered by adsorption in a resin column. The maximum photosynthetic productivity of farnesene was 69.1??1.8 ?gL(-1)O.D.(-1)d(-1). Compared to the wild type, the farnesene-producing cyanobacterium also exhibited a 60 % higher PSII activity under high light, suggesting increased farnesene productivity in such conditions. We envision genetically engineered cyanobacteria as a bio-solar factory for photosynthetic production of a wide range of biofuels and commodity chemicals. PMID:25301585

  11. Genetic engineering of bio-nanoparticles for drug delivery: a review.

    PubMed

    Nishimura, Yuya; Ishii, Jun; Ogino, Chiaki; Kondo, Akihiko

    2014-09-01

    Techniques using nanotechnology in the detection and treatment of cancers have made great progress in multidisciplinary fields. The advances in drug delivery systems (DDSs) have been supported mainly by the development of varied nanoparticles (NPs). Although the NPs based on organic and inorganic materials are integral parts in DDSs, bio-nanoparticles containing biopolymer and virus-like particles (VLPs) are attractive biomaterials for DDSs because of their unique features originating in bio-based materials, such as biocompatibility, biodegradability and low immunogenicity. It is notable that these NPs additionally have a great advantage to enable the easy and flexible alteration of their features by genetic engineering approaches. Controlling the sequence and oligomeric process of polypeptide genes permits a variety of choices in type or size of biopolymeric NPs (e.g., elastin-like polypeptide NPs). In contrast, the functional genes are often inserted into the coding sequences for self-assembled proteins to give the VLPs (e.g., hemagglutinating virus of Japan, adeno-associated virus, human immunodeficiency virus-1, simian virus 40 and hepatitis B virus) additional functions. Thus, genetic engineering readily allow alterations of the properties of NPs (e.g., particle shape, size and stability) and grant of new abilities (e.g., cell-specificity and drug loading and release). In this review, we introduce recent advances in bio-nanoparticles from the standpoint of engineering. PMID:25992449

  12. Hg{sup 2+} removal by genetically engineered Escherichia coli in a hollow fiber bioreactor

    SciTech Connect

    Chen, S.L.; Kim, E.K.; Shuler, M.L.; Wilson, D.B.

    1998-09-01

    Escherichia coli cells engineered to express an Hg{sup 2+} transport system and metallothionein accumulated Hg{sup 2+} effectively over a concentration range of 0.2--4 mg/L in batch systems. Bioaccumulation was selected against other metal ions and resistant to changes in ambient conditions such as pH, ionic strength, and the presence of common metal chelators or complexing agents. Here the authors report the characterization of the bioaccumulation system based on its kinetics and an isotherm. Bioaccumulation was rapid and followed Michaelis-menten kinetics. A hollow fiber bioreactor was constructed to retain the genetically engineered cells. The bioreactor was capable of removing and recovering Hg{sup 2+} effectively at low concentrations, reducing a 2 mg/L solution to about 5 {micro}g/L. A mathematical equation that quantitatively described Hg{sup 2+} removal by the bioreactor provides a basis for the optimization and extrapolation of the bioreactor. The genetically engineered E. coli cells and the bioreactor system have excellent properties for bioremediation of Hg{sup 2+}-contaminated environments.

  13. Genetic engineering of plants for improved crop production. (Latest citations from the Biobusiness data base). Published Search

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1992-05-01

    The bibliography contains citations concerning the use of genetic engineering to improve crop production. Genetic alterations of plants to provide insect protection, herbicide resistance, disease resistance, improved quality, and higher yield are discussed. Methods used to develop environmentally tolerant crops that are able to withstand extremes of temperature, reduced water consumption, and reduced fertilizer requirements are examined. Genetic engineering of microorganisms that are beneficial to plants is discussed in a separate bibliography. (Contains 250 citations and includes a subject term index and title list.)

  14. Population genetics of Trypanosoma brucei circulating in Glossina palpalis palpalis and domestic animals of the Fontem sleeping sickness focus of Cameroon

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Human African Trypanosomiasis is still a public health threat in Cameroon. To assess Trypanosoma brucei strains circulating in the Fontem sleeping sickness focus, we conducted a genetic structure study using microsatellites to assess genotypes circulating in both tsetse flies and domestic animals. Method For this study, pyramidal traps were set up and 2695 tsetse flies were collected and 1535 (57%) living flies were dissected and their mid-guts collected. Furthermore, blood samples were collected from 397 domestic animals (pigs, goats, sheep and dogs). DNA was extracted from midguts and blood samples, and specific primers were used to identify trypanosomes of the subgenus Trypanozoon. All positive samples were genetically characterized with seven microsatellite markers. Results Seventy five (4.7%) midguts of tsetse flies and 140 (35.2%) domestic animals were found infected by trypanosomes of the subgenus Trypanozoon. The genetic characterization of 215 Trypanozoon positive samples (75 from tsetse and 140 from animals) revealed a genetic diversity between Trypanosoma brucei circulating in tsetse and domestic animals. Of these positive samples, 87 (40.5%) single infections were used here to investigate the population genetics of Trypanosoma brucei circulating in tsetse and domestic animals. The dendrogram illustrating the genetic similarities between Trypanosoma brucei genotypes was subdivided into four clusters. The samples from tsetse belonged to the same cluster whereas the samples from domestic animals and espcially pigs were distributed in the four clusters. Conclusion Pigs appeared as the animal species harboring the highest number of different Trypanosoma brucei strains. They may play an important role in the propagation of different genotypes. The FST values revealed a sub structuration of Trypanosoma brucei according to hosts and sometimes villages. The data obtained from this study may have considerable importance for the understanding of the transmission and the spread of specific genotypes of Trypanosoma brucei. PMID:24690359

  15. Genetic variation changes the interactions between the parasitic plant-ecosystem engineer Rhinanthus and its hosts

    PubMed Central

    Rowntree, Jennifer K.; Cameron, Duncan D.; Preziosi, Richard F.

    2011-01-01

    Within-species genetic variation is a potent factor influencing between-species interactions and community-level structure. Species of the hemi-parasitic plant genus Rhinanthus act as ecosystem engineers, significantly altering above- and below-ground community structure in grasslands. Here, we show the importance of genotypic variation within a single host species (barleyHordeum vulgare), and population-level variation among two species of parasite (Rhinanthus minor and Rhinanthus angustifolius) on the outcome of parasite infection for both partners. We measured host fitness (number of seeds) and calculated parasite virulence as the difference in seed set between infected and uninfected hosts (the inverse of host tolerance). Virulence was determined by genetic variation within the host species and among the parasite species, but R. angustifolius was consistently more virulent than R. minor. The most tolerant host had the lowest inherent fitness and did not gain a fitness advantage over other infected hosts. We measured parasite size as a proxy for transmission ability (ability to infect further hosts) and host resistance. Parasite size depended on the specific combination of host genotype, parasite species and parasite population, and no species was consistently larger. We demonstrate that the outcome of infection by Rhinanthus depends not only on the host species, but also on the underlying genetics of both host and parasite. Thus, genetic variations within host and parasite are probably essential components of the ecosystem-altering effects of Rhinanthus. PMID:21444312

  16. High efficiency site-specific genetic engineering of the mosquito genome

    PubMed Central

    Nimmo, D. D.; Alphey, L.; Meredith, J. M.; Eggleston, P.

    2006-01-01

    Current techniques for the genetic engineering of insect genomes utilize transposable genetic elements, which are inefficient, have limited carrying capacity and give rise to position effects and insertional mutagenesis. As an alternative, we investigated two site-specific integration mechanisms in the yellow fever mosquito, Aedes aegypti. One was a modified CRE/lox system from phage P1 and the other a viral integrase system from Streptomyces phage phi C31. The modified CRE/lox system consistently failed to produce stable germ-line transformants but the phi C31 system was highly successful, increasing integration efficiency by up to 7.9-fold. The ability to efficiently target transgenes to specific chromosomal locations and the potential to integrate very large transgenes has broad applicability to research on many medically and economically important species. PMID:16640723

  17. Phytosequestration: Carbon biosequestration by plants and the prospects of genetic engineering

    SciTech Connect

    Jansson, C.; Wullschleger, S.D.; Kalluri, U.C.; Tuskan, G.A.

    2010-07-15

    Photosynthetic assimilation of atmospheric carbon dioxide by land plants offers the underpinnings for terrestrial carbon (C) sequestration. A proportion of the C captured in plant biomass is partitioned to roots, where it enters the pools of soil organic C and soil inorganic C and can be sequestered for millennia. Bioenergy crops serve the dual role of providing biofuel that offsets fossil-fuel greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and sequestering C in the soil through extensive root systems. Carbon captured in plant biomass can also contribute to C sequestration through the deliberate addition of biochar to soil, wood burial, or the use of durable plant products. Increasing our understanding of plant, microbial, and soil biology, and harnessing the benefits of traditional genetics and genetic engineering, will help us fully realize the GHG mitigation potential of phytosequestration.

  18. Synthesis of a genetically engineered repetitive polypeptide containing periodic selenomethionine residues

    SciTech Connect

    Dougherty, M.J.; Kothakota, S.; Mason, T.L.; Tirrell, D.A.; Fournier, M.J. )

    1993-03-29

    Genetically engineered proteins will play an important role in materials science. Many natural proteins have excellent materials properties such as the silks, elastin, and collagen, and, in principle, both these and entirely new protein materials can be produced from artificial genes. Good early progress has been made in this direction, including the synthesis of repetitive proteins predicted to self-assemble into solid lamellae of defined thickness and surface function. While biological synthesis offers the materials scientist superior control over polymer chain architecture, including purity of sequence, size, and stereochemistry, its versatility is limited to the 20 amino acids that can be utilized in protein biosynthesis. First efforts in this direction would logically start with amino acid analogs known to be incorporated during translation. The authors describe here the first genetic synthesis of a periodic protein material in which an amino acid analog, selenomethionine, completely replaces a natural amino acid.

  19. Ribozyme-based aminoglycoside switches of gene expression engineered by genetic selection in S. cerevisiae.

    PubMed

    Klauser, Benedikt; Atanasov, Janina; Siewert, Lena K; Hartig, Jrg S

    2015-05-15

    Systems for conditional gene expression are powerful tools in basic research as well as in biotechnology. For future applications, it is of great importance to engineer orthogonal genetic switches that function reliably in diverse contexts. RNA-based switches have the advantage that effector molecules interact immediately with regulatory modules inserted into the target RNAs, getting rid of the need of transcription factors usually mediating genetic control. Artificial riboswitches are characterized by their simplicity and small size accompanied by a high degree of modularity. We have recently reported a series of hammerhead ribozyme-based artificial riboswitches that allow for post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression via switching mRNA, tRNA, or rRNA functions. A more widespread application was so far hampered by moderate switching performances and a limited set of effector molecules available. Here, we report the re-engineering of hammerhead ribozymes in order to respond efficiently to aminoglycoside antibiotics. We first established an in vivo selection protocol in Saccharomyces cerevisiae that enabled us to search large sequence spaces for optimized switches. We then envisioned and characterized a novel strategy of attaching the aptamer to the ribozyme catalytic core, increasing the design options for rendering the ribozyme ligand-dependent. These innovations enabled the development of neomycin-dependent RNA modules that switch gene expression up to 25-fold. The presented aminoglycoside-responsive riboswitches belong to the best-performing RNA-based genetic regulators reported so far. The developed in vivo selection protocol should allow for sampling of large sequence spaces for engineering of further optimized riboswitches. PMID:24871672

  20. Field Cage Studies and Progressive Evaluation of Genetically-Engineered Mosquitoes

    PubMed Central

    Facchinelli, Luca; Valerio, Laura; Ramsey, Janine M.; Gould, Fred; Walsh, Rachael K.; Bond, Guillermo; Robert, Michael A.; Lloyd, Alun L.; James, Anthony A.; Alphey, Luke; Scott, Thomas W.

    2013-01-01

    Background A genetically-engineered strain of the dengue mosquito vector Aedes aegypti, designated OX3604C, was evaluated in large outdoor cage trials for its potential to improve dengue prevention efforts by inducing population suppression. OX3604C is engineered with a repressible genetic construct that causes a female-specific flightless phenotype. Wild-type females that mate with homozygous OX3604C males will not produce reproductive female offspring. Weekly introductions of OX3604C males eliminated all three targeted Ae. aegypti populations after 10–20 weeks in a previous laboratory cage experiment. As part of the phased, progressive evaluation of this technology, we carried out an assessment in large outdoor field enclosures in dengue endemic southern Mexico. Methodology/Principal Findings OX3604C males were introduced weekly into field cages containing stable target populations, initially at 10∶1 ratios. Statistically significant target population decreases were detected in 4 of 5 treatment cages after 17 weeks, but none of the treatment populations were eliminated. Mating competitiveness experiments, carried out to explore the discrepancy between lab and field cage results revealed a maximum mating disadvantage of up 59.1% for OX3604C males, which accounted for a significant part of the 97% fitness cost predicted by a mathematical model to be necessary to produce the field cage results. Conclusions/Significance Our results indicate that OX3604C may not be effective in large-scale releases. A strain with the same transgene that is not encumbered by a large mating disadvantage, however, could have improved prospects for dengue prevention. Insights from large outdoor cage experiments may provide an important part of the progressive, stepwise evaluation of genetically-engineered mosquitoes. PMID:23350003

  1. Transcriptomic classification of genetically engineered mouse models of breast cancer identifies human subtype counterparts

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Human breast cancer is a heterogeneous disease consisting of multiple molecular subtypes. Genetically engineered mouse models are a useful resource for studying mammary cancers in vivo under genetically controlled and immune competent conditions. Identifying murine models with conserved human tumor features will facilitate etiology determinations, highlight the effects of mutations on pathway activation, and should improve preclinical drug testing. Results Transcriptomic profiles of 27 murine models of mammary carcinoma and normal mammary tissue were determined using gene expression microarrays. Hierarchical clustering analysis identified 17 distinct murine subtypes. Cross-species analyses using three independent human breast cancer datasets identified eight murine classes that resemble specific human breast cancer subtypes. Multiple models were associated with human basal-like tumors including TgC3(1)-Tag, TgWAP-Myc and Trp53-/-. Interestingly, the TgWAPCre-Etv6 model mimicked the HER2-enriched subtype, a group of human tumors without a murine counterpart in previous comparative studies. Gene signature analysis identified hundreds of commonly expressed pathway signatures between linked mouse and human subtypes, highlighting potentially common genetic drivers of tumorigenesis. Conclusions This study of murine models of breast carcinoma encompasses the largest comprehensive genomic dataset to date to identify human-to-mouse disease subtype counterparts. Our approach illustrates the value of comparisons between species to identify murine models that faithfully mimic the human condition and indicates that multiple genetically engineered mouse models are needed to represent the diversity of human breast cancers. The reported trans-species associations should guide model selection during preclinical study design to ensure appropriate representatives of human disease subtypes are used. PMID:24220145

  2. Is genetic engineering ever going to take off in forage, turf and bioenergy crop breeding?

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Zeng-Yu; Brummer, E. Charles

    2012-01-01

    Background Genetic engineering offers the opportunity to generate unique genetic variation that is either absent in the sexually compatible gene pool or has very low heritability. The generation of transgenic plants, coupled with breeding, has led to the production of widely used transgenic cultivars in several major cash crops, such as maize, soybean, cotton and canola. The process for regulatory approval of genetically engineered crops is slow and subject to extensive political interference. The situation in forage grasses and legumes is more complicated. Scope Most widely grown forage, turf and bioenergy species (e.g. tall fescue, perennial ryegrass, switchgrass, alfalfa, white clover) are highly self-incompatible and outcrossing. Compared with inbreeding species, they have a high potential to pass their genes to adjacent plants. A major biosafety concern in these species is pollen-mediated transgene flow. Because human consumption is indirect, risk assessment of transgenic forage, turf and bioenergy species has focused on their environmental or ecological impacts. Although significant progress has been made in genetic modification of these species, commercialization of transgenic cultivars is very limited because of the stringent and costly regulatory requirements. To date, the only transgenic forage crop deregulated in the US is Roundup Ready (RR) alfalfa. The approval process for RR alfalfa was complicated, involving several rounds of regulation, deregulation and re-regulation. Nevertheless, commercialization of RR alfalfa is an important step forward in regulatory approval of a perennial outcrossing forage crop. As additional transgenic forage, turf and bioenergy crops are generated and tested, different strategies have been developed to meet regulatory requirements. Recent progress in risk assessment and deregulation of transgenic forage and turf species is summarized and discussed. PMID:22378838

  3. Phelan McDermid Syndrome: From Genetic Discoveries to Animal Models and Treatment.

    PubMed

    Harony-Nicolas, Hala; De Rubeis, Silvia; Kolevzon, Alexander; Buxbaum, Joseph D

    2015-12-01

    Phelan-McDermid syndrome or 22q13.3 deletion syndrome is a rare neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by generalized developmental delay, intellectual disability, absent or delayed speech, seizures, autism spectrum disorder, neonatal hypotonia, physical dysmorphic features, and recurrent medical comorbidities. Individuals with Phelan-McDermid syndrome have terminal deletions of the chromosomal region 22q13.3 encompassing SHANK3, a gene encoding a structural component of excitatory synapses indispensable for proper synaptogenesis and neuronal physiology, or point mutations within the gene. Here, we review the clinical aspects of the syndrome and the genetic findings shedding light onto the underlying etiology. We also provide an overview on the evidence from genetic studies and mouse models that supports SHANK3 haploinsufficiency as a major contributor of the neurobehavioral manifestations of Phelan-McDermid syndrome. Finally, we discuss how all these discoveries are uncovering the pathophysiology of Phelan-McDermid syndrome and are being translated into clinical trials for novel therapeutics ameliorating the core symptoms of the disorder. PMID:26350728

  4. The genetics of murine Hox loci: TAMERE, STRING, and PANTHERE to engineer chromosome variants.

    PubMed

    Tschopp, Patrick; Duboule, Denis

    2014-01-01

    Following their duplications at the base of the vertebrate clade, Hox gene clusters underwent remarkable sub- and neo-functionalization events. Many of these evolutionary innovations can be associated with changes in the transcriptional regulation of their genes, where an intricate relationship between the structure of the gene cluster and the architecture of the surrounding genomic landscape is at play. Here, we report on a portfolio of in vivo genome engineering strategies in mice, which have been used to probe and decipher the genetic and molecular underpinnings of the complex regulatory mechanisms implemented at these loci. PMID:25151159

  5. Systemic delivery of human growth hormone by injection of genetically engineered myoblasts

    SciTech Connect

    Dhawan, J.; Pan, L.C.; Pavlath, G.K.; Travis, M.A.; Lanctot, A.M.; Blau, H.M. )

    1991-12-06

    A recombinant gene encoding human growth hormone (hGH) was stably introduced into cultured myoblasts with a retroviral vector. After injection of genetically engineered myoblasts into mouse muscle, hGH could be detected in serum for 3 months. The fate of injected myoblasts was assessed by coinfecting the cells with two retroviral vectors, one encoding hGH and the other encoding {beta}-galactosidase from Escherichia coli. These results provide evidence that myoblasts, which can fuse into preexisting multinucleated myofibers that are vascularized and innervated, may be advantageous as vehicles for systemic delivery of recombinant proteins.

  6. Crystals of Serum Albumin for Use in Genetic Engineering and Rational Drug Design

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Carter, Daniel C. (Inventor)

    1996-01-01

    Serum albumin crystal forms have been produced which exhibit superior x-ray diffraction quality. The crystals are produced from both recombinant and wild-type human serum albumin, canine, and baboon serum albumin and allow the performance of drug-binding studies as well as genetic engineering studies. The crystals are grown from solutions of polyethylene glycol or ammonium sulphate within prescribed limits during growth times from one to several weeks and include the following space groups: P2(sub 1), C2, P1.

  7. Mitogen-activated protein kinase-regulated AZI1 – an attractive candidate for genetic engineering

    PubMed Central

    Pitzschke, Andrea; Datta, Sneha; Persak, Helene

    2014-01-01

    Mitogen-activated protein kinases and their targets have been in the limelight of plant stress research. Signaling pathways mediating the responses to multiple stresses deserve particular attention. In a recent study, we reported AZI1, a member of the lipid transfer protein family, to play a role in MPK3-mediated responses to salt stress in Arabidopsis thaliana. MPK3 controls AZI1 at the transcriptional and posttranslational level. The AZI1 protein has several properties that make it very attractive for genetic engineering. A model of multi-level control of AZI1 by MPK3 is proposed, and strategies toward optimizing AZI1 protein properties are briefly discussed. PMID:24518841

  8. Overview of KRAS-Driven Genetically Engineered Mouse Models of Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer.

    PubMed

    Sheridan, Clare; Downward, Julian

    2015-01-01

    KRAS, the most frequently mutated oncogene in non-small cell lung cancer, has been utilized extensively to model human lung adenocarcinomas. The results from such studies have enhanced considerably an understanding of the relationship between KRAS and the development of lung cancer. Detailed in this overview are the features of various KRAS-driven genetically engineered mouse models (GEMMs) of non-small cell lung cancer, their utilization, and the potential of these models for the study of lung cancer biology. 2015 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc. PMID:26331885

  9. Predicting genetic engineering targets with Elementary Flux Mode Analysis: a review of four current methods.

    PubMed

    Ruckerbauer, David E; Jungreuthmayer, Christian; Zanghellini, Jrgen

    2015-12-25

    Elementary flux modes (EFMs) are a well-established tool in metabolic modeling. EFMs are minimal, feasible, steady state pathways through a metabolic network. They are used in various approaches to predict targets for genetic interventions in order to increase production of a molecule of interest via a host cell. Here we give an introduction to the concept of EFMs, present an overview of four methods which use EFMs in order to predict engineering targets and lastly use a toy model and a small-scale metabolic model to demonstrate and compare the capabilities of these methods. PMID:25917465

  10. Experimental therapy of human glioma by means of a genetically engineered virus mutant

    SciTech Connect

    Martuza, R.L.; Malick, A.; Markert, J.M.; Ruffner, K.L.; Coen, D.M. )

    1991-05-10

    Malignant gliomas are the most common malignant brain tumors and are almost always fatal. A thymidine kinase-negative mutant of herpes simplex virus-1 (dlsptk) that is attenuated for neurovirulence was tested as a possible treatment for gliomas. In cell culture, dlsptk killed two long-term human glioma lines and three short-term human glioma cell populations. In nude mice with implanted subcutaneous and subrenal U87 human gliomas, intraneoplastic inoculation of dlsptk caused growth inhibition. In nude mice with intracranial U87 gliomas, intraneoplastic inoculation of dlsptk prolonged survival. Genetically engineered viruses such as dlsptk merit further evaluation as novel antineoplastic agents.

  11. Three new milbemycins from a genetically engineered strain S. avermitilis MHJ1011.

    PubMed

    Pan, Jun-Jie; Wan, Xu; Zhang, Hui; Chen, Zhen; Huang, Jun; Yang, Bo; Chen, An-Liang; Wang, Ji-Dong

    2016-02-01

    Three new β-class milbemycins, 13α-hydroxy-4-ethy1 milbemycin β3 (1), 13α-hydroxy-25-ethy1 milbemycin β3 (2), 13α-hydroxy milbemycin β3 (3), were isolated from the broth of the genetically engineered strains Streptomyces avermitilis MHJ1011, whose aveA1 gene was replaced by milA1 gene seamlessly. Their structures were determined on the basis of extensive spectroscopic analysis and comparison with data from the literature. These three compounds, especially compound 1, exhibited potent acaricidal activity. PMID:26328934

  12. Expanding the Scope of Site-Specific Recombinases for Genetic and Metabolic Engineering

    PubMed Central

    Gaj, Thomas; Sirk, Shannon J.; Barbas, Carlos F.

    2014-01-01

    Site-specific recombinases are tremendously valuable tools for basic research and genetic engineering. By promoting high-fidelity DNA modifications, site-specific recombination systems have empowered researchers with unprecedented control over diverse biological functions, enabling countless insights into cellular structure and function. The rigid target specificities of many sites-specific recombinases, however, have limited their adoption in fields that require highly flexible recognition abilities. As a result, intense effort has been directed toward altering the properties of site-specific recombination systems by protein engineering. Here, we review key developments in the rational design and directed molecular evolution of site-specific recombinases, highlighting the numerous applications of these enzymes across diverse fields of study. PMID:23982993

  13. Improving UV resistance and virulence of Beauveria bassiana by genetic engineering with an exogenous tyrosinase gene.

    PubMed

    Shang, Yanfang; Duan, Zhibing; Huang, Wei; Gao, Qiang; Wang, Chengshu

    2012-01-01

    Insect pathogenic fungi like Beauveria bassiana have been developed as environmentally friendly biocontrol agents against arthropod pests. However, restrictive environmental factors, including solar ultraviolet (UV) radiation frequently lead to inconsistent field performance. To improve resistance to UV damage, we used Agrobacterium-mediated transformation to engineer B. bassiana with an exogenous tyrosinase gene. The results showed that the mitotically stable transformants produced larger amounts of yellowish pigments than the wild-type strain, and these imparted significantly increased UV-resistance. The virulence of the transgenic isolate was also significantly increased against the silkworm Bombyx mori and the mealworm Tenebrio molitor. This study demonstrated that genetic engineering of B. bassiana with a tyrosinase gene is an effective way to improve fungal tolerance against UV damage. PMID:22024554

  14. Multidisciplinary Design Optimization for Aeropropulsion Engines and Solid Modeling/Animation via the Integrated Forced Methods

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    The grant closure report is organized in the following four chapters: Chapter describes the two research areas Design optimization and Solid mechanics. Ten journal publications are listed in the second chapter. Five highlights is the subject matter of chapter three. CHAPTER 1. The Design Optimization Test Bed CometBoards. CHAPTER 2. Solid Mechanics: Integrated Force Method of Analysis. CHAPTER 3. Five Highlights: Neural Network and Regression Methods Demonstrated in the Design Optimization of a Subsonic Aircraft. Neural Network and Regression Soft Model Extended for PX-300 Aircraft Engine. Engine with Regression and Neural Network Approximators Designed. Cascade Optimization Strategy with Neural network and Regression Approximations Demonstrated on a Preliminary Aircraft Engine Design. Neural Network and Regression Approximations Used in Aircraft Design.

  15. Whole-body multicolor spectrally resolved fluorescence imaging for development of target-specific optical contrast agents using genetically engineered probes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kobayashi, Hisataka; Hama, Yukihiro; Koyama, Yoshinori; Barrett, Tristan; Urano, Yasuteru; Choyke, Peter L.

    2007-02-01

    Target-specific contrast agents are being developed for the molecular imaging of cancer. Optically detectable target-specific agents are promising for clinical applications because of their high sensitivity and specificity. Pre clinical testing is needed, however, to validate the actual sensitivity and specificity of these agents in animal models, and involves both conventional histology and immunohistochemistry, which requires large numbers of animals and samples with costly handling. However, a superior validation tool takes advantage of genetic engineering technology whereby cell lines are transfected with genes that induce the target cell to produce fluorescent proteins with characteristic emission spectra thus, identifying them as cancer cells. Multicolor fluorescence imaging of these genetically engineered probes can provide rapid validation of newly developed exogenous probes that fluoresce at different wavelengths. For example, the plasmid containing the gene encoding red fluorescent protein (RFP) was transfected into cell lines previously developed to either express or not-express specific cell surface receptors. Various antibody-based or receptor ligand-based optical contrast agents with either green or near infrared fluorophores were developed to concurrently target and validate cancer cells and their positive and negative controls, such as β-D-galactose receptor, HER1 and HER2 in a single animal/organ. Spectrally resolved fluorescence multicolor imaging was used to detect separate fluorescent emission spectra from the exogenous agents and RFP. Therefore, using this in vivo imaging technique, we were able to demonstrate the sensitivity and specificity of the target-specific optical contrast agents, thus reducing the number of animals needed to conduct these experiments.

  16. Genetic and pharmacological inhibition of vanin-1 activity in animal models of type 2 diabetes

    PubMed Central

    van Diepen, Janna A.; Jansen, Patrick A.; Ballak, Dov B.; Hijmans, Anneke; Rutjes, Floris P.J.T.; Tack, Cees J.; Netea, Mihai G.; Schalkwijk, Joost; Stienstra, Rinke

    2016-01-01

    Vanins are enzymes that convert pantetheine to pantothenic acid (vitamin B5). Insights into the function of vanins have evolved lately, indicating vanin-1 to play a role in inflammation, oxidative stress and cell migration. Moreover, vanin-1 has recently gained attention as a novel modulator of hepatic glucose and lipid metabolism. In the present study, we investigated the role of vanin-1 in the development of hepatic steatosis and insulin resistance in animal models of obesity and diabetes. In addition, we evaluated the potency of RR6, a novel pharmacological vanin-1 inhibitor, as an anti-diabetic drug. Increased vanin activity was observed in plasma and liver of high fat diet (HFD)-induced obese mice, as well as ZDF-diabetic rats. Ablation of vanin-1 (Vnn1−/− mice) mildly improved glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity in HFD-fed mice, but had no effects on body weight, hepatic steatosis or circulating lipid levels. Oral administration of RR6 for 8 days completely inhibited plasma vanin activity, but did not affect hepatic glucose production, insulin sensitivity or hepatic steatosis in ZDF-diabetes rats. In conclusion, absence of vanin-1 activity improves insulin sensitivity in HFD-fed animals, yet short-term inhibition of vanin activity may have limited value as an anti-diabetic strategy. PMID:26932716

  17. Genetic and pharmacological inhibition of vanin-1 activity in animal models of type 2 diabetes.

    PubMed

    van Diepen, Janna A; Jansen, Patrick A; Ballak, Dov B; Hijmans, Anneke; Rutjes, Floris P J T; Tack, Cees J; Netea, Mihai G; Schalkwijk, Joost; Stienstra, Rinke

    2016-01-01

    Vanins are enzymes that convert pantetheine to pantothenic acid (vitamin B5). Insights into the function of vanins have evolved lately, indicating vanin-1 to play a role in inflammation, oxidative stress and cell migration. Moreover, vanin-1 has recently gained attention as a novel modulator of hepatic glucose and lipid metabolism. In the present study, we investigated the role of vanin-1 in the development of hepatic steatosis and insulin resistance in animal models of obesity and diabetes. In addition, we evaluated the potency of RR6, a novel pharmacological vanin-1 inhibitor, as an anti-diabetic drug. Increased vanin activity was observed in plasma and liver of high fat diet (HFD)-induced obese mice, as well as ZDF-diabetic rats. Ablation of vanin-1 (Vnn1(-/-) mice) mildly improved glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity in HFD-fed mice, but had no effects on body weight, hepatic steatosis or circulating lipid levels. Oral administration of RR6 for 8 days completely inhibited plasma vanin activity, but did not affect hepatic glucose production, insulin sensitivity or hepatic steatosis in ZDF-diabetes rats. In conclusion, absence of vanin-1 activity improves insulin sensitivity in HFD-fed animals, yet short-term inhibition of vanin activity may have limited value as an anti-diabetic strategy. PMID:26932716

  18. Association Between PRRSV ORF5 Genetic Distance and Differences in Space, Time, Ownership and Animal Sources Among Commercial Pig Herds.

    PubMed

    Rosendal, T; Dewey, C; Friendship, R; Wootton, S; Young, B; Poljak, Z

    2016-04-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate associations between genetic distance of porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) detected in Ontario swine herds, and the distance between the herds with respect to space, time, ownership and animal sources. PRRSV sequence data between September 2004 and August 2007 were obtained from the Animal Health Laboratory of the University of Guelph. Geographical coordinates were obtained from the Ontario Pork marketing board, and network information about ownership and animal suppliers was obtained using a telephone interview. The matrices of sequence, spatial, temporal and network distances were generated and were analysed using the Mantel test, and using linear-mixed models with P-values based on random permutations. A total of 438 PRRSV isolates from 329 premises and 232 ownerships were originally included; 57 of the isolates were considered vaccine type. The Mantel correlation test indicated that there was positive correlation between sequence distance and geographic distance (r = 0.11, P = 0.001), as well as sequence distance and temporal distance (r = 0.03, P = 0.03), with similar results reported after adjusting for the ownership distance. Mantel correlogram suggested existence of spatial correlation up to ~30 km distance. Multivariable linear-mixed model for association between genetic distance and space-time distance was characterized by the three-way interaction among space, time and ownership (P < 0.001). It suggested that positive association between sequence similarity and spatial proximity exists in herds under different ownerships, but its magnitude is very small. In contrast, for pairs of herds under identical ownership, the spatial association was more complex. This could be a consequence of interactions within ownerships, or alternatively decisions made about sampling of herds for diagnostic purposes. Of the networks evaluated, ownership (P < 0.001) and gilt supplier (P < 0.001) showed the highest magnitude of association with genetic distance and should be investigated further for their impact on disease spread. PMID:25088908

  19. Design and testing of a synthetic biology framework for genetic engineering of Corynebacterium glutamicum

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Synthetic biology approaches can make a significant contribution to the advance of metabolic engineering by reducing the development time of recombinant organisms. However, most of synthetic biology tools have been developed for Escherichia coli. Here we provide a platform for rapid engineering of C. glutamicum, a microorganism of great industrial interest. This bacteria, used for decades for the fermentative production of amino acids, has recently been developed as a host for the production of several economically important compounds including metabolites and recombinant proteins because of its higher capacity of secretion compared to traditional bacterial hosts like E. coli. Thus, the development of modern molecular platforms may significantly contribute to establish C. glutamicum as a robust and versatile microbial factory. Results A plasmid based platform named pTGR was created where all the genetic components are flanked by unique restriction sites to both facilitate the evaluation of regulatory sequences and the assembly of constructs for the expression of multiple genes. The approach was validated by using reporter genes to test promoters, ribosome binding sites, and for the assembly of dual gene operons and gene clusters containing two transcriptional units. Combinatorial assembly of promoter (tac, cspB and sod) and RBS (lacZ, cspB and sod) elements with different strengths conferred clear differential gene expression of two reporter genes, eGFP and mCherry, thus allowing transcriptional fine-tuningof multiple genes. In addition, the platform allowed the rapid assembly of operons and genes clusters for co-expression of heterologous genes, a feature that may assist metabolic pathway engineering. Conclusions We anticipate that the pTGR platform will contribute to explore the potential of novel parts to regulate gene expression, and to facilitate the assembly of genetic circuits for metabolic engineering of C. glutamicum. The standardization provided by this approach may provide a means to improve the productivity of biosynthetic pathways in microbial factories for the production of novel compounds. PMID:23134565

  20. Formation mechanism of chalcogenide nanocrystals confined inside genetically engineered virus-like particles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, Ziyou; Bedwell, Gregory J.; Li, Rui; Prevelige, Peter E.; Gupta, Arunava

    2014-01-01

    Engineered virus-like particles (VLP) are attractive for fabricating nanostructured materials for applications in diverse areas such as catalysis, drug delivery, biomedicine, composites, etc. Basic understanding of the interaction between the inorganic guest and biomolecular host is thus important for the controlled synthesis of inorganic nanoparticles inside VLP and rational assembly of ordered VLP-based hierarchical nanostructures. We have investigated in detail the formation mechanism and growth kinetics of semiconducting nanocrystals confined inside genetically engineered bacteriophage P22 VLP using semiconducting CdS as a prototypical example. The selective nucleation and growth of CdS at the engineered sites is found to be uniform during the early stage, followed by a more stochastic growth process. Furthermore, kinetic studies reveal that the presence of an engineered biotemplate helps in significantly retarding the reaction rate. These findings provide guidance for the controlled synthesis of a wide range of other inorganic materials confined inside VLP, and are of practical importance for the rational design of VLP-based hierarchical nanostuctures.

  1. Formation mechanism of chalcogenide nanocrystals confined inside genetically engineered virus-like particles.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Ziyou; Bedwell, Gregory J; Li, Rui; Prevelige, Peter E; Gupta, Arunava

    2014-01-01

    Engineered virus-like particles (VLP) are attractive for fabricating nanostructured materials for applications in diverse areas such as catalysis, drug delivery, biomedicine, composites, etc. Basic understanding of the interaction between the inorganic guest and biomolecular host is thus important for the controlled synthesis of inorganic nanoparticles inside VLP and rational assembly of ordered VLP-based hierarchical nanostructures. We have investigated in detail the formation mechanism and growth kinetics of semiconducting nanocrystals confined inside genetically engineered bacteriophage P22 VLP using semiconducting CdS as a prototypical example. The selective nucleation and growth of CdS at the engineered sites is found to be uniform during the early stage, followed by a more stochastic growth process. Furthermore, kinetic studies reveal that the presence of an engineered biotemplate helps in significantly retarding the reaction rate. These findings provide guidance for the controlled synthesis of a wide range of other inorganic materials confined inside VLP, and are of practical importance for the rational design of VLP-based hierarchical nanostuctures. PMID:24452221

  2. Formation mechanism of chalcogenide nanocrystals confined inside genetically engineered virus-like particles

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Ziyou; Bedwell, Gregory J.; Li, Rui; Prevelige, Peter E.; Gupta, Arunava

    2014-01-01

    Engineered virus-like particles (VLP) are attractive for fabricating nanostructured materials for applications in diverse areas such as catalysis, drug delivery, biomedicine, composites, etc. Basic understanding of the interaction between the inorganic guest and biomolecular host is thus important for the controlled synthesis of inorganic nanoparticles inside VLP and rational assembly of ordered VLP-based hierarchical nanostructures. We have investigated in detail the formation mechanism and growth kinetics of semiconducting nanocrystals confined inside genetically engineered bacteriophage P22 VLP using semiconducting CdS as a prototypical example. The selective nucleation and growth of CdS at the engineered sites is found to be uniform during the early stage, followed by a more stochastic growth process. Furthermore, kinetic studies reveal that the presence of an engineered biotemplate helps in significantly retarding the reaction rate. These findings provide guidance for the controlled synthesis of a wide range of other inorganic materials confined inside VLP, and are of practical importance for the rational design of VLP-based hierarchical nanostuctures. PMID:24452221

  3. Evaluation of terrestrial microcosms for detection, fate, and survival analysis of genetically engineered microorganisms and their recombinant genetic material

    SciTech Connect

    Fredrickson, J.K.; Seidler, R.J.

    1989-02-01

    The research included in this document represents the current scientific information available regarding the applicability of terrestrial microcosms and related methodologies for evaluating detection methods and the fate and survival of microorganisms in the environment. The three terrestrial microcosms described in this document were used to evaluate the survival and fate of recombinant bacteria in soils and in association with plant surfaces and insects and their transport through soil with percolating water and root systems, and to test new methods and procedures to improve detection and enumeration of bacteria in soil. Simple (potting soil composed of peat mix and perlite, lacking environmental control and monitoring) and complex microcosms (agricultural soil with partial control and monitoring of environmental conditions) were demonstrated to be useful tools for preliminary assessments of microbial viability in terrestrial ecosystems. These studies evaluated the survival patterns of Enterobacter cloacae (pBR322) in soil and on plant surfaces and the ingestion of this same microorganism by cutworms and survival in the foregut and frass. The Versacore microcosm design was used to monitor the fate and competitiveness of genetically engineered bacteria in soil. Both selective media and gene probes were used successfully to follow the fate of two recombinant Pseudomonas sp. introduced into Versacore microcosms. Intact soil-core microcosms were employed to evaluate the fate and transport of genetically altered Azospirillum sp. and Pseudomonas sp. in soil and the plant rhizosphere. The usefulness of these various microcosms as a tool for risk assessment is underscored by the ease in obtaining soil from a proposed field release site to evaluate subsequent GEM fate and survival.

  4. Genetic similarity of intestinal spirochetes from humans and various animal species.

    PubMed

    Koopman, M B; Ksbohrer, A; Beckmann, G; van der Zeijst, B A; Kusters, J G

    1993-03-01

    The chromosomal DNA of spirochetes isolated from human, swine, dog, mouse, rat, and chicken intestine or feces was subjected to restriction enzyme analysis and hybridization with three different DNA probes, derived from a flagellin gene, a hemolysin gene, and the 16S rDNA sequence of the pathogenic swine intestinal spirochete Serpulina hyodysenteriae. This genetic analysis showed that intestinal spirochetes represent a heterogeneous but related population of bacteria. In general, unique genotypes were distinguished among isolates from the same host species; they were not present among isolates from other host species. This suggests the host specificity of some strains. An exception to this are isolates from humans and dogs suffering from gastrointestinal disorders; these isolates showed highly similar or even identical genotypes. None of them resembled any of the genotypes of isolates found in other host species without apparent disease. PMID:8096218

  5. "Suspended animation," my mother's wife and cultural discernment: considerations for genetic research among immigrants.

    PubMed

    Kissell, Judith Lee

    2005-01-01

    One of the most difficult contemporary issues facing the bioethics of clinical research is balancing the maintaining of a universality of ethics standards with a sensitivity to cultural issues and differences. The concept of "vulnerability" for research subjects is especially apt for investigating the ethical and cultural issues surrounding the conduct of genetic research among new immigrants to the United States, using the Sudanese Nuer and Dinka tribes, recently settled in the Midwest, as an example. Issues of cultural vulnerability arise for some immigrants, related to relationship to the earth and to kinship issues, that threaten the narrative richness of a subject's life as well as the way she situates herself in the world. PMID:16292606

  6. Genetic similarity of intestinal spirochetes from humans and various animal species.

    PubMed Central

    Koopman, M B; Ksbohrer, A; Beckmann, G; van der Zeijst, B A; Kusters, J G

    1993-01-01

    The chromosomal DNA of spirochetes isolated from human, swine, dog, mouse, rat, and chicken intestine or feces was subjected to restriction enzyme analysis and hybridization with three different DNA probes, derived from a flagellin gene, a hemolysin gene, and the 16S rDNA sequence of the pathogenic swine intestinal spirochete Serpulina hyodysenteriae. This genetic analysis showed that intestinal spirochetes represent a heterogeneous but related population of bacteria. In general, unique genotypes were distinguished among isolates from the same host species; they were not present among isolates from other host species. This suggests the host specificity of some strains. An exception to this are isolates from humans and dogs suffering from gastrointestinal disorders; these isolates showed highly similar or even identical genotypes. None of them resembled any of the genotypes of isolates found in other host species without apparent disease. Images PMID:8096218

  7. Epidemiological and Genetic Data Supporting the Transmission of Ancylostoma ceylanicum among Human and Domestic Animals

    PubMed Central

    Ngui, Romano; Lim, Yvonne A. L.; Traub, Rebecca; Mahmud, Rohela; Mistam, Mohd Sani

    2012-01-01

    Background Currently, information on species-specific hookworm infection is unavailable in Malaysia and is restricted worldwide due to limited application of molecular diagnostic tools. Given the importance of accurate identification of hookworms, this study was conducted as part of an ongoing molecular epidemiological investigation aimed at providing the first documented data on species-specific hookworm infection, associated risk factors and the role of domestic animals as reservoirs for hookworm infections in endemic communities of Malaysia. Methods/Findings A total of 634 human and 105 domestic canine and feline fecal samples were randomly collected. The overall prevalence of hookworm in humans and animals determined via microscopy was 9.1% (95% CI = 7.0–11.7%) and 61.9% (95% CI = 51.2–71.2%), respectively. Multivariate analysis indicated that participants without the provision of proper latrine systems (OR = 3.5; 95% CI = 1.53–8.00; p = 0.003), walking barefooted (OR = 5.6; 95% CI = 2.91–10.73; p<0.001) and in close contact with pets or livestock (OR = 2.9; 95% CI = 1.19–7.15; p = 0.009) were more likely to be infected with hookworms. Molecular analysis revealed that while most hookworm-positive individuals were infected with Necator americanus, Ancylostoma ceylanicum constituted 12.8% of single infections and 10.6% mixed infections with N. americanus. As for cats and dogs, 52.0% were positive for A. ceylanicum, 46.0% for Ancylostoma caninum and 2.0% for Ancylostoma braziliense and all were single infections. Conclusion This present study provided evidence based on the combination of epidemiological, conventional diagnostic and molecular tools that A. ceylanicum infection is common and that its transmission dynamic in endemic areas in Malaysia is heightened by the close contact of human and domestic animal (i.e., dogs and cats) populations. PMID:22347515

  8. Genetic Engineering of Trypanosoma (Dutonella) vivax and In Vitro Differentiation under Axenic Conditions

    PubMed Central

    D'Archivio, Simon; Medina, Mathieu; Cosson, Alain; Chamond, Nathalie; Rotureau, Brice; Minoprio, Paola; Goyard, Sophie

    2011-01-01

    Trypanosoma vivax is one of the most common parasites responsible for animal trypanosomosis, and although this disease is widespread in Africa and Latin America, very few studies have been conducted on the parasite's biology. This is in part due to the fact that no reproducible experimental methods had been developed to maintain the different evolutive forms of this trypanosome under laboratory conditions. Appropriate protocols were developed in the 1990s for the axenic maintenance of three major animal Trypanosoma species: T. b. brucei, T. congolense and T. vivax. These pioneer studies rapidly led to the successful genetic manipulation of T. b. brucei and T. congolense. Advances were made in the understanding of these parasites' biology and virulence, and new drug targets were identified. By contrast, challenging in vitro conditions have been developed for T. vivax in the past, and this per se has contributed to defer both its genetic manipulation and subsequent gene function studies. Here we report on the optimization of non-infective T. vivax epimastigote axenic cultures and on the process of parasite in vitro differentiation into metacyclic infective forms. We have also constructed the first T. vivax specific expression vector that drives constitutive expression of the luciferase reporter gene. This vector was then used to establish and optimize epimastigote transfection. We then developed highly reproducible conditions that can be used to obtain and select stably transfected mutants that continue metacyclogenesis and are infectious in immunocompetent rodents. PMID:22216367

  9. Bone Marrow Transplantation in Mice as a Tool to Generate Genetically Modified Animals

    SciTech Connect

    Roszer, Tamas; Pintye, Eva; Benko', Ilona

    2008-12-08

    Transgenic mice can be used either as models of known inherited human diseases or can be applied to perform phenotypic tests of genes with unknown function. In some special applications of gene modification we have to create a tissue specific mutation of a given gene. In some cases however the gene modification can be lethal in the intrauterine life, therefore we should engraft the mutated cells in the postnatal life period. After total body irradiation transplantation of bone marrow cells can be a solution to introduce mutant hematopoietic stem cells into a mature animal. Bone marrow transplantation is a useful and novel tool to study the role of hematopoietic cells in the pathogenesis of inflammation, autoimmune syndromes and many metabolic alterations coupled recently to leukocyte functions.

  10. Anatomical and genetic study of an ancient animal tooth showing brachyodont and hypsodont mixed taxonomical characteristics.

    PubMed

    Monteagudo, L V; Obn, J A; Whyte, A; Tejedor, M T; Whyte, J; Cisneros, A

    2013-05-01

    A non-human dental piece was found in a Roman Empire tomb dated the 3rd century A.C. in Zaragoza (Spain). The morphology of this piece showed mixed brachyodont (carnivores) and hypsodont (herbivores) characteristics. As a result, the taxonomical assignation of the piece was impossible. Therefore, a protocol based on the DNA sequence of the cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1 mitochondrial region (COI) was applied. For this purpose, a pair of primers able to amplify this region in a large variety of animals was designed. The results point to a species of the Genus Bos (Family Bovidae). This assignation was later confirmed by these quencing of a short fragment of the mitochondrial D-loop region. A complete morphological description of the tooth is presented together with the DNA sequence study and comparison protocol. PMID:23740506

  11. Bone Marrow Transplantation in Mice as a Tool to Generate Genetically Modified Animals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rőszer, Tamás; Pintye, Éva; Benkő, Ilona

    2008-12-01

    Transgenic mice can be used either as models of known inherited human diseases or can be applied to perform phenotypic tests of genes with unknown function. In some special applications of gene modification we have to create a tissue specific mutation of a given gene. In some cases however the gene modification can be lethal in the intrauterine life, therefore we should engraft the mutated cells in the postnatal life period. After total body irradiation transplantation of bone marrow cells can be a solution to introduce mutant hematopoietic stem cells into a mature animal. Bone marrow transplantation is a useful and novel tool to study the role of hematopoietic cells in the pathogenesis of inflammation, autoimmune syndromes and many metabolic alterations coupled recently to leukocyte functions.

  12. The apoptotic initiator caspase-8: its functional ubiquity and genetic diversity during animal evolution.

    PubMed

    Sakamaki, Kazuhiro; Shimizu, Kouhei; Iwata, Hiroaki; Imai, Kenichiro; Satou, Yutaka; Funayama, Noriko; Nozaki, Masami; Yajima, Mamiko; Nishimura, Osamu; Higuchi, Mayura; Chiba, Kumiko; Yoshimoto, Michi; Kimura, Haruna; Gracey, Andrew Y; Shimizu, Takashi; Tomii, Kentaro; Gotoh, Osamu; Akasaka, Koji; Sawasaki, Tatsuya; Miller, David J

    2014-12-01

    The caspases, a family of cysteine proteases, play multiple roles in apoptosis, inflammation, and cellular differentiation. Caspase-8 (Casp8), which was first identified in humans, functions as an initiator caspase in the apoptotic signaling mediated by cell-surface death receptors. To understand the evolution of function in the Casp8 protein family, casp8 orthologs were identified from a comprehensive range of vertebrates and invertebrates, including sponges and cnidarians, and characterized at both the gene and protein levels. Some introns have been conserved from cnidarians to mammals, but both losses and gains have also occurred; a new intron arose during teleost evolution, whereas in the ascidian Ciona intestinalis, the casp8 gene is intronless and is organized in an operon with a neighboring gene. Casp8 activities are near ubiquitous throughout the animal kingdom. Exogenous expression of a representative range of nonmammalian Casp8 proteins in cultured mammalian cells induced cell death, implying that these proteins possess proapoptotic activity. The cnidarian Casp8 proteins differ considerably from their bilaterian counterparts in terms of amino acid residues in the catalytic pocket, but display the same substrate specificity as human CASP8, highlighting the complexity of spatial structural interactions involved in enzymatic activity. Finally, it was confirmed that the interaction with an adaptor molecule, Fas-associated death domain protein, is also evolutionarily ancient. Thus, despite structural diversity and cooption to a variety of new functions, the ancient origins and near ubiquitous distribution of this activity across the animal kingdom emphasize the importance and utility of Casp8 as a central component of the metazoan molecular toolkit. PMID:25205508

  13. The WAG/Rij strain: a genetic animal model of absence epilepsy with comorbidity of depression [corrected].

    PubMed

    Sarkisova, Karine; van Luijtelaar, Gilles

    2011-06-01

    A great number of clinical observations show a relationship between epilepsy and depression. Idiopathic generalized epilepsy, including absence epilepsy, has a genetic basis. The review provides evidence that WAG/Rij rats can be regarded as a valid genetic animal model of absence epilepsy with comorbidity of depression. WAG/Rij rats, originally developed as an animal model of human absence epilepsy, share many EEG and behavioral characteristics resembling absence epilepsy in humans, including the similarity of action of various antiepileptic drugs. Behavioral studies indicate that WAG/Rij rats exhibit depression-like symptoms: decreased investigative activity in the open field test, increased immobility in the forced swimming test, and decreased sucrose consumption and preference (anhedonia). In addition, WAG/Rij rats adopt passive strategies in stressful situations, express some cognitive disturbances (reduced long-term memory), helplessness, and submissiveness, inability to make choice and overcome obstacles, which are typical for depressed patients. Elevated anxiety is not a characteristic (specific) feature of WAG/Rij rats; it is a characteristic for only a sub-strain of WAG/Rij rats susceptible to audiogenic seizures. Interestingly, WAG/Rij rats display a hyper-response to amphetamine similar to anhedonic depressed patients. WAG/Rij rats are sensitive only to chronic, but not acute, antidepressant treatments, suggesting that WAG/Rij rats fulfill a criterion of predictive validity for a putative animal model of depression. However, more and different antidepressant drugs still await evaluation. Depression-like behavioral symptoms in WAG/Rij rats are evident at baseline conditions, not exclusively after stress. Experiments with foot-shock stress do not point towards higher stress sensitivity at both behavioral and hormonal levels. However, freezing behavior (coping deficits) and blunted response of 5HT in the frontal cortex to uncontrollable sound stress, increased c-fos expression in the terminal regions of the meso-cortico-limbic brain systems and greater DA response of the mesolimbic system to forced swim stress suggest that WAG/Rij rats are vulnerable to some, but not to all types of stressors. We propose that genetic absence epileptic WAG/Rij rats have behavioral depression-like symptoms, are vulnerable to stress and might represent a model of chronic low-grade depression (dysthymia). Both 5HT and DAergic abnormalities detected in the brain of WAG/Rij rats are involved in modulation of vulnerability to stress and provocation of behavioral depression-like symptoms. The same neurotransmitter systems modulate SWDs as well. Recent studies suggest that the occurrence and repetition of absence seizures are a precipitant of depression-like behavior. Whether the neurochemical changes are primary to depression-like behavioral alterations remains to be determined. In conclusion, the WAG/Rij rats can be considered as a genetic animal model for absence epilepsy with comorbidity of dysthymia. This model can be used to investigate etiology, pathogenic mechanisms and treatment of a psychiatric comorbidity, such as depression in absence epilepsy, to reveal putative genes contributing to comorbid depressive disorder, and to screen novel psychotropic drugs with a selective and/or complex (dual) action on both pathologies. PMID:21093520

  14. Convergence of stem cell behaviors and genetic regulation between animals and plants: insights from the Arabidopsis thaliana stomatal lineage

    PubMed Central

    Matos, Juliana L.

    2014-01-01

    Plants and animals are two successful, but vastly different, forms of complex multicellular life. In the 1600 million years since they shared a common unicellular ancestor, representatives of these kingdoms have had ample time to devise unique strategies for building and maintaining themselves, yet they have both developed self-renewing stem cell populations. Using the cellular behaviors and the genetic control of stomatal lineage of Arabidopsis as a focal point, we find current data suggests convergence of stem cell regulation at developmental and molecular levels. Comparative studies between evolutionary distant groups, therefore, have the power to reveal the logic behind stem cell behaviors and benefit both human regenerative medicine and plant biomass production. PMID:25184043

  15. Designing RNA-based genetic control systems for efficient production from engineered metabolic pathways.

    PubMed

    Stevens, Jason T; Carothers, James M

    2015-02-20

    Engineered metabolic pathways can be augmented with dynamic regulatory controllers to increase production titers by minimizing toxicity and helping cells maintain homeostasis. We investigated the potential for dynamic RNA-based genetic control systems to increase production through simulation analysis of an engineered p-aminostyrene (p-AS) pathway in E. coli. To map the entire design space, we formulated 729 unique mechanistic models corresponding to all of the possible control topologies and mechanistic implementations in the system under study. Two thousand sampled simulations were performed for each of the 729 system designs to relate the potential effects of dynamic control to increases in p-AS production (total of 3 10(6) simulations). Our analysis indicates that dynamic control strategies employing aptazyme-regulated expression devices (aREDs) can yield >10-fold improvements over static control. We uncovered generalizable trends in successful control architectures and found that highly performing RNA-based control systems are experimentally tractable. Analyzing the metabolic control state space to predict optimal genetic control strategies promises to enhance the design of metabolic pathways. PMID:25314371

  16. Lentivectors Encoding Immunosuppressive Proteins Genetically Engineer Pancreatic ? Cells to Correct Diabetes in Allogeneic Mice

    PubMed Central

    Kojaoghlanian, Tsoline; Joseph, Aviva; Follenzi, Antonia; Zheng, Jian Hua; Leiser, Margarita; Fleischer, Norman; Horwitz, Marshall S.; DiLorenzo, Teresa P.; Goldstein, Harris

    2010-01-01

    The effectiveness of genetic engineering with lentivectors to protect transplanted cells from allogeneic rejection was examined using, as a model, type 1 diabetes treatment with ? cell transplantation, whose widespread use has been limited by the requirement for sustained immunosuppressive treatment to prevent graft rejection. We examined whether lentivectors expressing select immunosuppressive proteins encoded by the adenoviral genome early region 3 (AdE3) would protect transplanted ? cells from an alloimmune attack. The insulin-producing ? cell line ?TC-tet (C3HeB/FeJ-derived) was transduced with lentiviruses encoding the AdE3 proteins gp19K and RID?/?. The efficiency of lentiviral transduction of ?TC-tet cells exceeded 85%. Lentivector expression of gp19K decreased surface class I MHC expression by over 90%, while RID?/? expression inhibited cytokine-induced Fas upregulation by over 75%. ?TC-tet cells transduced with gp19K and RID?/? lentivectors, but not with a control lentivector, provided prolonged correction of hyperglycemia after transplantation into diabetic BALB/c SCID mice reconstituted with allogeneic immune effector cells or into diabetic allogeneic BALB/c mice. Thus, genetic engineering of ? cells using gp19K and RID?/? expressing lentiviral vectors may provide an alternative that has the potential to eliminate or reduce treatment with the potent immunosuppressive agents currently necessary for prolonged engraftment with transplanted islets. PMID:19112449

  17. Potential of genetically engineered hybrid poplar for pyrolytic production of bio-based phenolic compounds.

    PubMed

    Toraman, Hilal E; Vanholme, Ruben; Borén, Eleonora; Vanwonterghem, Yumi; Djokic, Marko R; Yildiz, Guray; Ronsse, Frederik; Prins, Wolter; Boerjan, Wout; Van Geem, Kevin M; Marin, Guy B

    2016-05-01

    Wild-type and two genetically engineered hybrid poplar lines were pyrolyzed in a micro-pyrolysis (Py-GC/MS) and a bench scale setup for fast and intermediate pyrolysis studies. Principal component analysis showed that the pyrolysis vapors obtained by micro-pyrolysis from wood of caffeic acid O-methyltransferase (COMT) and caffeoyl-CoA O-methyltransferase (CCoAOMT) down-regulated poplar trees differed significantly from the pyrolysis vapors obtained from non-transgenic control trees. Both fast micro-pyrolysis and intermediate pyrolysis of transgenic hybrid poplars showed that down-regulation of COMT can enhance the relative yield of guaiacyl lignin-derived products, while the relative yield of syringyl lignin-derived products was up to a factor 3 lower. This study indicates that lignin engineering via genetic modifications of genes involved in the phenylpropanoid and monolignol biosynthetic pathways can help to steer the pyrolytic production of guaiacyl and syringyl lignin-derived phenolic compounds such as guaiacol, 4-methylguaiacol, 4-ethylguaiacol, 4-vinylguaiacol, syringol, 4-vinylsyringol, and syringaldehyde present in the bio-oil. PMID:26890798

  18. Recent advances to improve fermentative butanol production: genetic engineering and fermentation technology.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Jin; Tashiro, Yukihiro; Wang, Qunhui; Sonomoto, Kenji

    2015-01-01

    Butanol has recently attracted attention as an alternative biofuel because of its various advantages over other biofuels. Many researchers have focused on butanol fermentation with renewable and sustainable resources, especially lignocellulosic materials, which has provided significant progress in butanol fermentation. However, there are still some drawbacks in butanol fermentation in terms of low butanol concentration and productivity, high cost of feedstock and product inhibition, which makes butanol fermentation less competitive than the production of other biofuels. These hurdles are being resolved in several ways. Genetic engineering is now available for improving butanol yield and butanol ratio through overexpression, knock out/down, and insertion of genes encoding key enzymes in the metabolic pathway of butanol fermentation. In addition, there are also many strategies to improve fermentation technology, such as multi-stage continuous fermentation, continuous fermentation integrated with immobilization and cell recycling, and the inclusion of additional organic acids or electron carriers to change metabolic flux. This review focuses on the most recent advances in butanol fermentation especially from the perspectives of genetic engineering and fermentation technology. PMID:25027723

  19. Release of tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase-2 from alginate microcapsule encapsulating genetically engineered cells

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Yeon Seong; Jeong, Young-II; Jin, Shu-Guang; Pei, Jian; Wen, Min; Kim, In-Young; Moon, Kyung-Sub; Jung, Tae-Young; Ryu, Hyang-Hwa; Jung, Shin

    2013-01-01

    Background In this study, 293T cells were genetically engineered to secrete tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase-2 (TIMP2) and encapsulated into alginate microcapsules to continuously release TIMP2 protein. Methods The anti-invasive potential of the microcapsules was studied in vitro using brain tumor cells. The TIMP2 gene was transfected to 293T cells, and genetically engineered 293TIMP2 cells were encapsulated into alginate microcapsules. Release of TIMP2 protein was detected with Western blot analysis and the anti-invasive potential against U87MG cells was tested using gelatin zymography and a Matrigel assay. Results Cell viability within the alginate microcapsules was maintained at a cell density of 5 × 106. Because polycationic polymers are helpful for maintaining the mechanical strength of microcapsules with good cell viability, the alginate microcapsules were reinforced with chitosan (0.1% w/v). Expression of TIMP2 protein in cell lysates and secretion of TIMP2 into the conditioned medium was confirmed by Western blot analysis. Alginate microcapsules encapsulating 293TIMP2 cells released TIMP2 protein into the medium efficiently, where the TIMP2 protein participated in degradation of the matrix metalloproteinase-2 enzyme and inhibited invasion of U87MG cells. Conclusion Alginate microcapsules encapsulating 293TIMP2 cells are promising candidates for anti-invasive treatment of glioma. PMID:24231999

  20. The morality of socioscientific issues: Construal and resolution of genetic engineering dilemmas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sadler, Troy D.; Zeidler, Dana L.

    2004-01-01

    The ability to negotiate and resolve socioscientific issues has been posited as integral components of scientific literacy. Although philosophers and science educators have argued that socioscientific issues inherently involve moral and ethical considerations, the ultimate arbiters of morality are individual decision-makers. This study explored the extent to which college students construe genetic engineering issues as moral problems. Twenty college students participated in interviews designed to elicit their ideas, reactions, and feelings regarding a series of gene therapy and cloning scenarios. Qualitative analyses revealed that moral considerations were significant influences on decision-making, indicating a tendency for students to construe genetic engineering issues as moral problems. Students engaged in moral reasoning based on utilitarian analyses of consequences as well as the application of principles. Issue construal was also influenced by affective features such as emotion and intuition. In addition to moral considerations, a series of other factors emerged as important dimensions of socioscientific decision-making. These factors included personal experiences, family biases, background knowledge, and the impact of popular culture. The implications for classroom science instruction and future research are discussed.

  1. Genetically engineered plants and foods: a scientist's analysis of the issues (part II).

    PubMed

    Lemaux, Peggy G

    2009-01-01

    Genetic engineering provides a means to introduce genes into plants via mechanisms that are different in some respects from classical breeding. A number of commercialized, genetically engineered (GE) varieties, most notably canola, cotton, maize and soybean, were created using this technology, and at present the traits introduced are herbicide and/or pest tolerance. In 2007 these GE crops were planted in developed and developing countries on more than 280 million acres (113 million hectares) worldwide, representing nearly 10% of rainfed cropland. Although the United States leads the world in acres planted with GE crops, the majority of this planting is on large acreage farms. In developing countries, adopters are mostly small and resource-poor farmers. For farmers and many consumers worldwide, planting and eating GE crops and products made from them are acceptable and even welcomed; for others GE crops raise food and environmental safety questions, as well as economic and social issues. In Part I of this review, some general and food issues related to GE crops and foods were discussed. In Part II, issues related to certain environmental and socioeconomic aspects of GE crops and foods are addressed, with responses linked to the scientific literature. PMID:19400729

  2. Induction of erythropoiesis using human vascular networks genetically engineered for controlled erythropoietin release.

    PubMed

    Lin, Ruei-Zeng; Dreyzin, Alexandra; Aamodt, Kristie; Li, Dan; Jaminet, Shou-Ching S; Dudley, Andrew C; Melero-Martin, Juan M

    2011-11-17

    For decades, autologous ex vivo gene therapy has been postulated as a potential alternative to parenteral administration of recombinant proteins. However, achieving effective cellular engraftment of previously retrieved patient cells is challenging. Recently, our ability to engineer vasculature in vivo has allowed for the introduction of instructions into tissues by genetically modifying the vascular cells that build these blood vessels. In the present study, we genetically engineered human blood-derived endothelial colony-forming cells (ECFCs) to express erythropoietin (EPO) under the control of a tetracycline-regulated system, and generated subcutaneous vascular networks capable of systemic EPO release in immunodeficient mice. These ECFC-lined vascular networks formed functional anastomoses with the mouse vasculature, allowing direct delivery of recombinant human EPO into the bloodstream. After activation of EPO expression, erythropoiesis was induced in both normal and anemic mice, a process that was completely reversible. This approach could relieve patients from frequent EPO injections, reducing the medical costs associated with the management of anemia. We propose this ECFC-based gene-delivery strategy as a viable alternative technology when routine administration of recombinant proteins is needed. PMID:21937702

  3. Improvements of tolerance to stress conditions by genetic engineering in Saccharomyces cerevisiae during ethanol production.

    PubMed

    Do?an, Ay?egl; Demirci, Selami; Aytekin, Ali zhan; ?ahin, Fikrettin

    2014-09-01

    Saccharomyces cerevisiae, industrial yeast isolate, has been of great interest in recent years for fuel ethanol production. The ethanol yield and productivity depend on many inhibitory factors during the fermentation process such as temperature, ethanol, compounds released as the result of pretreatment procedures, and osmotic stress. An ideal strain should be able to grow under different stress conditions occurred at different fermentation steps. Development of tolerant yeast strains can be achieved by reprogramming pathways supporting the ethanol metabolism by regulating the energy balance and detoxicification processes. Complex gene interactions should be solved for an in-depth comprehension of the yeast stress tolerance mechanism. Genetic engineering as a powerful biotechnological tool is required to design new strategies for increasing the ethanol fermentation performance. Upregulation of stress tolerance genes by recombinant DNA technology can be a useful approach to overcome inhibitory situations. This review presents the application of several genetic engineering strategies to increase ethanol yield under different stress conditions including inhibitor tolerance, ethanol tolerance, thermotolerance, and osmotolerance. PMID:24908051

  4. Genetic algorithm to optimize the design of main combustor and gas generator in liquid rocket engines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Son, Min; Ko, Sangho; Koo, Jaye

    2014-06-01

    A genetic algorithm was used to develop optimal design methods for the regenerative cooled combustor and fuel-rich gas generator of a liquid rocket engine. For the combustor design, a chemical equilibrium analysis was applied, and the profile was calculated using Rao's method. One-dimensional heat transfer was assumed along the profile, and cooling channels were designed. For the gas-generator design, non-equilibrium properties were derived from a counterflow analysis, and a vaporization model for the fuel droplet was adopted to calculate residence time. Finally, a genetic algorithm was adopted to optimize the designs. The combustor and gas generator were optimally designed for 30-tonf, 75-tonf, and 150-tonf engines. The optimized combustors demonstrated superior design characteristics when compared with previous non-optimized results. Wall temperatures at the nozzle throat were optimized to satisfy the requirement of 800 K, and specific impulses were maximized. In addition, the target turbine power and a burned-gas temperature of 1000 K were obtained from the optimized gas-generator design.

  5. Revisiting the case for genetically engineered mouse models in human myelodysplastic syndrome research.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Ting; Kinney, Marsha C; Scott, Linda M; Zinkel, Sandra S; Rebel, Vivienne I

    2015-08-27

    Much-needed attention has been given of late to diseases specifically associated with an expanding elderly population. Myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS), a hematopoietic stem cell-based blood disease, is one of these. The lack of clear understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying the pathogenesis of this disease has hampered the development of efficacious therapies, especially in the presence of comorbidities. Mouse models could potentially provide new insights into this disease, although primary human MDS cells grow poorly in xenografted mice. This makes genetically engineered murine models a more attractive proposition, although this approach is not without complications. In particular, it is unclear if or how myelodysplasia (abnormal blood cell morphology), a key MDS feature in humans, presents in murine cells. Here, we evaluate the histopathologic features of wild-type mice and 23 mouse models with verified myelodysplasia. We find that certain features indicative of myelodysplasia in humans, such as Howell-Jolly bodies and low neutrophilic granularity, are commonplace in healthy mice, whereas other features are similarly abnormal in humans and mice. Quantitative hematopoietic parameters, such as blood cell counts, are required to distinguish between MDS and related diseases. We provide data that mouse models of MDS can be genetically engineered and faithfully recapitulate human disease. PMID:26077396

  6. Evaluating learning and attitudes on tissue engineering: a study of children viewing animated digital dome shows detailing the biomedicine of tissue engineering.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Anna C; Gonzalez, Laura L; Pollock, John A

    2012-03-01

    Informal science education creates opportunities for the general public to learn about complex health and science topics. Tissue engineering is a fast-growing field of medical science that combines advanced chemistries to create synthetic scaffolds, stem cells, and growth factors that individually or in combination can support the bodies own healing powers to remedy a range of maladies. Health literacy about this topic is increasingly important as our population ages and as treatments become more technologically advanced. We are using a science center planetarium as a projection space to engage and educate the public about the science and biomedical research that supports tissue engineering. The purpose of this study was to test the effectiveness of the films that we have produced for part of the science center planetarium demographic, specifically children ranging in age from 7 to 16 years. A two-group pre- and post-test design was used to compare children's learning and attitude changes in response to the two versions of the film. One version uses traditional voice-over narration; the other version uses dialog between two animated characters. The results of this study indicate that children demonstrated increases in knowledge of the topic with either film format, but preferred the animated character version. The percentage change in children's scores on the knowledge questions given before and after viewing the show exhibited an improvement from 23% correct to 61% correct on average. In addition, many of the things that the children reported liking were part of the design process of the art-science collaboration. Other results indicated that before viewing the shows 77% of the children had not even heard about tissue engineering and only 17% indicated that they were very interested in it, whereas after viewing the shows, 95% indicated that tissue engineering was a good idea. We also find that after viewing the show, 71% of the children reported that the show made them think, 75% enjoyed it, and 89% felt that they learned something. We discuss the potential impact the films might have on public knowledge, health literacy, and attitudes toward the science of tissue engineering. PMID:21943030

  7. Evaluating Learning and Attitudes on Tissue Engineering: A Study of Children Viewing Animated Digital Dome Shows Detailing the Biomedicine of Tissue Engineering

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, Anna C.; Gonzalez, Laura L.

    2012-01-01

    Informal science education creates opportunities for the general public to learn about complex health and science topics. Tissue engineering is a fast-growing field of medical science that combines advanced chemistries to create synthetic scaffolds, stem cells, and growth factors that individually or in combination can support the bodies own healing powers to remedy a range of maladies. Health literacy about this topic is increasingly important as our population ages and as treatments become more technologically advanced. We are using a science center planetarium as a projection space to engage and educate the public about the science and biomedical research that supports tissue engineering. The purpose of this study was to test the effectiveness of the films that we have produced for part of the science center planetarium demographic, specifically children ranging in age from 7 to 16 years. A two-group pre- and post-test design was used to compare children's learning and attitude changes in response to the two versions of the film. One version uses traditional voice-over narration; the other version uses dialog between two animated characters. The results of this study indicate that children demonstrated increases in knowledge of the topic with either film format, but preferred the animated character version. The percentage change in children's scores on the knowledge questions given before and after viewing the show exhibited an improvement from 23% correct to 61% correct on average. In addition, many of the things that the children reported liking were part of the design process of the artscience collaboration. Other results indicated that before viewing the shows 77% of the children had not even heard about tissue engineering and only 17% indicated that they were very interested in it, whereas after viewing the shows, 95% indicated that tissue engineering was a good idea. We also find that after viewing the show, 71% of the children reported that the show made them think, 75% enjoyed it, and 89% felt that they learned something. We discuss the potential impact the films might have on public knowledge, health literacy, and attitudes toward the science of tissue engineering. PMID:21943030

  8. Genetic threshold hypothesis of neocortical spike-and-wave discharges in the rat: An animal model of petit mal epilepsy

    SciTech Connect

    Vadasz, C.; Fleischer, A.; Carpi, D.; Jando, G.

    1995-02-27

    Neocortical high-voltage spike-and-wave discharges (HVS) in the rat are an animal model of petit mal epilepsy. Genetic analysis of total duration of HVS (s/12 hr) in reciprocal F1 and F2 hybrids of F344 and BN rats indicated that the phenotypic variability of HVS cannot be explained by simple, monogenic Mendelian model. Biometrical analysis suggested the presence of additive, dominance, and sex-linked-epistatic effects, buffering maternal influence, and heterosis. High correlation was observed between average duration (s/episode) and frequency of occurrence of spike-and-wave episodes (n/12 hr) in parental and segregating generations, indicating that common genes affect both duration and frequency of the spike-and-wave pattern. We propose that both genetic and developmental - environmental factors control an underlying quantitative variable, which, above a certain threshold level, precipitates HVS discharges. These findings, together with the recent availability of rat DNA markers for total genome mapping, pave the way to the identification of genes that control the susceptibility of the brain to spike-and-wave discharges. 67 refs., 3 figs., 5 tabs.

  9. Activation of the macroautophagic system in scrapie-infected experimental animals and human genetic prion diseases

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Yin; Tian, Chan; Wang, Shao-Bin; Xie, Wu-Ling; Guo, Yan; Zhang, Jin; Shi, Qi; Chen, Cao; Dong, Xiao-Ping

    2012-01-01

    Macroautophagy is an important process for removing misfolded and aggregated protein in cells, the dysfunction of which has been directly linked to an increasing number of neurodegenerative disorders. However, the details of macroautophagy in prion diseases remain obscure. Here we demonstrated that in the terminal stages of scrapie strain 263K-infected hamsters and human genetic prion diseases, the microtubule-associated protein 1 light chain 3 (LC3) was converted from the cytosolic form to the autophagosome-bound membrane form. Macroautophagy substrate sequestosome 1 (SQSTM1) and polyubiquitinated proteins were downregulated in the brains of sick individuals, indicating enhanced macroautophagic protein degradation. The levels of mechanistic target of rapamycin (MTOR) and phosphorylated MTOR (p-MTOR) were significantly decreased, which implies that this enhancement of the macroautophagic response is likely through the MTOR pathway which is a negative regulator for the initiation of macroautophagy. Dynamic assays of the autophagic system in the brains of scrapie experimental hamsters after inoculation showed that alterations of the autophagic system appeared along with the deposits of PrPSc in the infected brains. Immunofluorescent assays revealed specific staining of autophagosomes in neurons that were not colocalized with deposits of PrPSc in the brains of scrapie infected hamsters, however, autophagosome did colocalize with PrPSc in a prion-infected cell line after treatment with bafilomycin A1. These results suggest that activation of macroautophagy in brains is a disease-correlative phenomenon in prion diseases. PMID:22874564

  10. Genetics, Genomics, and Molecular Biology of Sex Determination in Small Animals

    PubMed Central

    Meyers-Wallen, Vicki N.

    2006-01-01

    The genomic revolution is beginning to facilitate advances in canine and feline medicine, as illustrated in our research. Our studies are focused upon identifying the gene mutation that causes canine Sry-negative XX sex reversal, a disorder of sex determination in which chromosomal females (78,XX) develop testicular tissue, becoming either XX true hermaphrodites with ovotestes, or XX males with bilateral testes. A genome-wide screen, using mapped markers in our pedigree of Sry-negative XX sex reversed dogs founded upon the American cocker spaniel, identified five chromosomal regions in which the causative gene may be located. The canine genome was used to identify the canine homologue of goat Pisrt1 and so determine that canine and caprine Sry-negative XX sex reversal are genetically heterogeneous. A second goal of our research is to determine the molecular mechanism by which the mutation causes testis induction. Thus far, we have reported gonadal Sry and Sox9 expression patterns in normal embryos, which have temporal and spatial patterns similar to those reported in humans, sheep, and pigs. Once gene mutations causing such inherited disorders are identified, DNA tests will become a part of general veterinary practice, advancing both diagnostic techniques and preventative medicine. PMID:16466782

  11. Genetic and phenotypic evidence of the Salmonella enterica serotype Enteritidis human-animal interface in Chile.

    PubMed

    Retamal, Patricio; Fresno, Marcela; Dougnac, Catherine; Gutierrez, Sindy; Gornall, Vanessa; Vidal, Roberto; Vernal, Rolando; Pujol, Myriam; Barreto, Marlen; González-Acuña, Daniel; Abalos, Pedro

    2015-01-01

    Salmonella enterica serotype Enteritidis is a worldwide zoonotic agent that has been recognized as a very important food-borne bacterial pathogen, mainly associated with consumption of poultry products. The aim of this work was to determine genotypic and phenotypic evidence of S. Enteritidis transmission among seabirds, poultry and humans in Chile. Genotyping was performed using PCR-based virulotyping, pulse-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) and multi-locus sequence typing (MLST). Pathogenicity-associated phenotypes were determined with survival to free radicals, acidic pH, starvation, antimicrobial resistance, and survival within human dendritic cells. As result of PCR and PFGE assays, some isolates from the three hosts showed identical genotypic patterns, and through MLST it was determined that all of them belong to sequence type 11. Phenotypic assays show diversity of bacterial responses among isolates. When results were analyzed according to bacterial host, statistical differences were identified in starvation and dendritic cells survival assays. In addition, isolates from seabirds showed the highest rates of resistance to gentamycin, tetracycline, and ampicillin. Overall, the very close genetic and phenotypic traits shown by isolates from humans, poultry, and seabirds suggest the inter-species transmission of S. Enteritidis bacteria between hosts, likely through anthropogenic environmental contamination that determines infection of seabirds with bacteria that are potentially pathogenic for other susceptible organism, including humans. PMID:26029196

  12. Isolation-induced behavioural changes in a genetic animal model of depression.

    PubMed

    Fischer, Christina W; Liebenberg, Nico; Elfving, Betina; Lund, Sten; Wegener, Gregers

    2012-04-21

    Depression is a heterogeneous disorder displaying a range of symptoms including feelings of despair and social withdrawal. Social isolation may complicate the progression of depression and have effects on both behaviour and physiology. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of social isolation on behavioural and metabolic parameters in a genetic rat model of depression, the Flinders Sensitive and Resistant Line (FSL/FRL) rats. Rats were housed either individually (social isolation) or pair-housed for 5weeks, and subjected to behavioural testing and metabolic evaluation. We found that social isolation erased the characteristic difference in depressive-like behaviour, measured as immobility in the forced swim test, between the FSL and FRL rats. Social isolation affected both strains equally in impairing object recognition memory, while leading to an increased explorative behaviour in the elevated plus maze test. Surprisingly, single-housed FRL rats showed an increased food intake compared to pair-housed FRL rats, whereas no difference in food intake or body weight was evident in FSL rats. Our results indicate that social isolation for 5weeks causes behavioural alterations, independent of strain. As the changes in appetite were only observed in the FRL rats, this may suggest that this strain responds to the stress of isolation by a change in feeding behaviour. PMID:22321459

  13. Genetic and phenotypic evidence of the Salmonella enterica serotype Enteritidis human-animal interface in Chile

    PubMed Central

    Retamal, Patricio; Fresno, Marcela; Dougnac, Catherine; Gutierrez, Sindy; Gornall, Vanessa; Vidal, Roberto; Vernal, Rolando; Pujol, Myriam; Barreto, Marlen; González-Acuña, Daniel; Abalos, Pedro

    2015-01-01

    Salmonella enterica serotype Enteritidis is a worldwide zoonotic agent that has been recognized as a very important food-borne bacterial pathogen, mainly associated with consumption of poultry products. The aim of this work was to determine genotypic and phenotypic evidence of S. Enteritidis transmission among seabirds, poultry and humans in Chile. Genotyping was performed using PCR-based virulotyping, pulse-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) and multi-locus sequence typing (MLST). Pathogenicity-associated phenotypes were determined with survival to free radicals, acidic pH, starvation, antimicrobial resistance, and survival within human dendritic cells. As result of PCR and PFGE assays, some isolates from the three hosts showed identical genotypic patterns, and through MLST it was determined that all of them belong to sequence type 11. Phenotypic assays show diversity of bacterial responses among isolates. When results were analyzed according to bacterial host, statistical differences were identified in starvation and dendritic cells survival assays. In addition, isolates from seabirds showed the highest rates of resistance to gentamycin, tetracycline, and ampicillin. Overall, the very close genetic and phenotypic traits shown by isolates from humans, poultry, and seabirds suggest the inter-species transmission of S. Enteritidis bacteria between hosts, likely through anthropogenic environmental contamination that determines infection of seabirds with bacteria that are potentially pathogenic for other susceptible organism, including humans. PMID:26029196

  14. Cell sheet-engineered bones used for the reconstruction of mandibular defects in an animal model

    PubMed Central

    DU, CHUNHUA; YAO, CHAO; LI, NINGYI; WANG, SHUANGYI; FENG, YUANYONG; YANG, XUECAI

    2015-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate the generation of cell sheet-engineered bones used for the reconstruction of mandibular defects. Bone marrow stem cells (BMSCs) were cultured and induced to generate osteoblasts. Poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) scaffolds were wrapped with or without cell sheets and then implanted into dogs with mandibular defects in the right side (experimental group) or the left side (control group), respectively. Subsequently, X-ray analyses, and hematoxylin and eosin staining were performed at various time points (at 4, 8, 12 or 16 weeks post-implantation; n=4 at each time point). The osteogenesis in the experimental group was significantly improved compared with that in the control group. At 16 weeks after implantation, numerous Haversian systems and a few lamellar bones were observed at the periphery. In the control group, the engineered bone (without BMSC sheets) presented fewer Haversian systems and no lamellar bones. The optical density of the fresh bone in the experimental group was significantly higher compared with that in the control group (P<0.05). In conclusion, tissue-engineered bone with the structure of lamellar bones can be generated using BMSC sheets and implantation of these bones had an improved effects compared with the control group. Cell sheet transplantation was found to enhance bone formation at the reconstruction site of the mandibular defects. PMID:26668619

  15. Multiple Genetic Elements Carry the Tetracycline Resistance Gene tet(W) in the Animal Pathogen Arcanobacterium pyogenes?

    PubMed Central

    Billington, Stephen J.; Jost, B. Helen

    2006-01-01

    The tet(W) gene is associated with tetracycline resistance in a wide range of bacterial species, including obligately anaerobic rumen bacteria and isolates from the human gut and oral mucosa. However, little is known about how this gene is disseminated and the types of genetic elements it is carried on. We examined tetracycline-resistant isolates of the animal commensal and opportunistic pathogen Arcanobacterium pyogenes, all of which carried tet(W), and identified three genetic elements designated ATE-1, ATE-2, and ATE-3. These elements were found in 25%, 35%, and 60% of tetracycline-resistant isolates, respectively, with some strains carrying both ATE-2 and ATE-3. ATE-1 shows characteristics of a mobilizable transposon, and the tet(W) genes from strains carrying this element can be transferred at low frequencies between A. pyogenes strains. ATE-2 has characteristics of a simple transposon, carrying only the resistance gene and a transposase, while in ATE-3, the tet(W) gene is associated with a streptomycin resistance gene that is 100% identical at the DNA level with the aadE gene from the Campylobacter jejuni plasmid pCG8245. Both ATE-2 and ATE-3 show evidence of being carried on larger genetic elements, but conjugation to other strains was not observed under the conditions tested. ATE-1 was preferentially associated with A. pyogenes strains of bovine origin, while ATE-2 and ATE-3 elements were primarily found in porcine isolates, suggesting that these elements may circulate in different environments. In addition, four alleles of the tet(W) gene, primarily associated with different elements, were detected among A. pyogenes isolates. PMID:16966401

  16. Genetically Engineered Human Islets Protected From CD8-mediated Autoimmune Destruction In Vivo

    PubMed Central

    Zaldumbide, Arnaud; Alkemade, Gonnie; Carlotti, Franoise; Nikolic, Tatjana; Abreu, Joana RF; Engelse, Marten A; Skowera, Anja; de Koning, Eelco J; Peakman, Mark; Roep, Bart O; Hoeben, Rob C; Wiertz, Emmanuel JHJ

    2013-01-01

    Islet transplantation is a promising therapy for type 1 diabetes, but graft function and survival are compromised by recurrent islet autoimmunity. Immunoprotection of islets will be required to improve clinical outcome. We engineered human ? cells to express herpesvirus-encoded immune-evasion proteins, immunevasins. The capacity of immunevasins to protect ? cells from autoreactive T-cell killing was evaluated in vitro and in vivo in humanized mice. Lentiviral vectors were used for efficient genetic modification of primary human ? cells without impairing their function. Using a novel ?-cellspecific reporter gene assay, we show that autoreactive cytotoxic CD8+ T-cell clones isolated from patients with recent onset diabetes selectively destroyed human ? cells, and that coexpression of the human cytomegalovirus-encoded US2 protein and serine proteinase inhibitor 9 offers highly efficient protection in vitro. Moreover, coimplantation of these genetically modified pseudoislets with ?-cellspecific cytotoxic T cells into immunodeficient mice achieves preserved human insulin production and C-peptide secretion. Collectively, our data provide proof of concept that human ? cells can be efficiently genetically modified to provide protection from killing mediated by autoreactive T cells and retain their function in vitro and in vivo. PMID:23689598

  17. Genetically selected Marchigian Sardinian alcohol-preferring (msP) rats: an animal model to study the neurobiology of alcoholism

    PubMed Central

    Ciccocioppo, Roberto; Economidou, Daina; Cippitelli, Andrea; Cucculelli, Marino; Ubaldi, Massimo; Soverchia, Laura; Anbarasu, Lourdusami; Massi, Maurizio

    2011-01-01

    The present article provides an up-to-date review that summarize almost 18 years of research in genetically selected Marchigian Sardinian alcohol-preferring (msP) rats. The results of this work demonstrate that msP rats have natural preference for ethanol characterized by a spontaneous binge-type of drinking leading to pharmacologically significant blood ethanol levels. This rat line is highly vulnerable to relapse and presentation of stimuli predictive of alcohol availability or foot-shock stress can reinstate extinguished drug-seeking up to 8 months from the last alcohol experience. The msP rat is highly sensitive to stress, shows an anxious phenotype and has depressive-like symptoms that recover following ethanol drinking. Interestingly, these animals have an up-regulated corticotrophin releasing factor (CRF) receptor 1 system. From clinical studies we learned that alcoholic patients often drink ethanol in the attempt to self-medicate from negative affective states and to search anxiety relief. We propose that msP rats represent an animal model that largely mimics that human alcoholic population that due to low ability to engage in stress-coping strategies drink ethanol as a tension relief strategy and for self-medication purposes. PMID:16961763

  18. Evaluation of Animal Genetic and Physiological Factors That Affect the Prevalence of Escherichia coli O157 in Cattle

    PubMed Central

    Jeon, Soo Jin; Elzo, Mauricio; DiLorenzo, Nicolas; Lamb, G. Cliff; Jeong, Kwang Cheol

    2013-01-01

    Controlling the prevalence of Escherichia coli O157 in cattle at the pre-harvest level is critical to reduce outbreaks of this pathogen in humans. Multilayers of factors including the environmental and bacterial factors modulate the colonization and persistence of E. coli O157 in cattle that serve as a reservoir of this pathogen. Here, we report animal factors contributing to the prevalence of E. coli O157 in cattle. We observe the lowest number of E. coli O157 in Brahman breed when compared with other crosses in an Angus-Brahman multibreed herd, and bulls excrete more E. coli O157 than steers in the pens where cattle were housed together. The presence of super-shedders, cattle excreting >105 CFU/rectal anal swab, increases the concentration of E. coli O157 in the pens; thereby super-shedders enhance transmission of this pathogen among cattle. Molecular subtyping analysis reveal only one subtype of E. coli O157 in the multibreed herd, indicating the variance in the levels of E. coli O157 in cattle is influenced by animal factors. Furthermore, strain tracking after relocation of the cattle to a commercial feedlot reveals farm-to-farm transmission of E. coli O157, likely via super-shedders. Our results reveal high risk factors in the prevalence of E. coli O157 in cattle whereby animal genetic and physiological factors influence whether this pathogen can persist in cattle at high concentration, providing insights to intervene this pathogen at the pre-harvest level. PMID:23405204

  19. Genetic modification of hypoxia signaling in animal models and its effect on cancer.

    PubMed

    García-Heredia, J M; Felipe-Abrio, B; Cano, D A; Carnero, A

    2015-02-01

    Conditions that cause hypoxemia or generalized tissue hypoxia, which can last for days, months, or even years, are very common in the human population and are among the leading causes of morbidity, disability, and mortality. Therefore, the molecular pathophysiology of hypoxia and its potential deleterious effects on human health are important issues at the forefront of biomedical research. Generalized hypoxia is a consequence of highly prevalent medical disorders that can severely reduce the capacity for O2 exchange between the air and pulmonary capillaries. In recent years, some of the key O2-dependent signaling pathways have been characterized at the molecular level. In particular, the prolyl hydroxylase (PHD)-hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF) cascade has emerged as the master regulator of a general gene expression program involved in cell/tissue/organ adaptation to hypoxia. Hypoxia has emerged as a critical factor in cancer because it can promote tumor initiation, progression, and resistance to therapy. Beyond its role in neovascularization as a mechanism of tumor adaptation to nutrient and O2 deprivation, hypoxia has been linked to prolonged cellular lifespan and immortalization, the generation of "oncometabolites", deregulation of stem cell proliferation, and inflammation, among other tumor hallmarks. Hypoxia may contribute to cancer through several independent pathways, the inter-connections of which have yet to be elucidated. Furthermore, the relevance of chronic hypoxemia in the initiation and progression of cancer has not been studied in depth in the whole organism. Therefore, we explore here the contributions of hypoxia to the whole organism by reviewing studies on genetically modified mice with alterations in the key molecular factors regulating hypoxia. PMID:25351170

  20. Automated, Quantitative Cognitive/Behavioral Screening of Mice: For Genetics, Pharmacology, Animal Cognition and Undergraduate Instruction

    PubMed Central

    Gallistel, C. R.; Balci, Fuat; Freestone, David; Kheifets, Aaron; King, Adam

    2014-01-01

    We describe a high-throughput, high-volume, fully automated, live-in 24/7 behavioral testing system for assessing the effects of genetic and pharmacological manipulations on basic mechanisms of cognition and learning in mice. A standard polypropylene mouse housing tub is connected through an acrylic tube to a standard commercial mouse test box. The test box has 3 hoppers, 2 of which are connected to pellet feeders. All are internally illuminable with an LED and monitored for head entries by infrared (IR) beams. Mice live in the environment, which eliminates handling during screening. They obtain their food during two or more daily feeding periods by performing in operant (instrumental) and Pavlovian (classical) protocols, for which we have written protocol-control software and quasi-real-time data analysis and graphing software. The data analysis and graphing routines are written in a MATLAB-based language created to simplify greatly the analysis of large time-stamped behavioral and physiological event records and to preserve a full data trail from raw data through all intermediate analyses to the published graphs and statistics within a single data structure. The data-analysis code harvests the data several times a day and subjects it to statistical and graphical analyses, which are automatically stored in the "cloud" and on in-lab computers. Thus, the progress of individual mice is visualized and quantified daily. The data-analysis code talks to the protocol-control code, permitting the automated advance from protocol to protocol of individual subjects. The behavioral protocols implemented are matching, autoshaping, timed hopper-switching, risk assessment in timed hopper-switching, impulsivity measurement, and the circadian anticipation of food availability. Open-source protocol-control and data-analysis code makes the addition of new protocols simple. Eight test environments fit in a 48 in x 24 in x 78 incabinet; two such cabinets (16 environments) may be controlled by one computer. PMID:24637442