Science.gov

Sample records for genetically engineered animals

  1. 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)

  2. 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, María F; Liaudat, Ana C; Rodríguez, 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

  3. 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)

  4. 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

  5. Genetically engineered livestock for agriculture: a generation after the first transgenic animal research conference.

    PubMed

    Murray, James D; Maga, Elizabeth A

    2016-06-01

    At the time of the first Transgenic Animal Research Conference, the lack of knowledge about promoter, enhancer and coding regions of genes of interest greatly hampered our efforts to create transgenes that would express appropriately in livestock. Additionally, we were limited to gene insertion by pronuclear microinjection. As predicted then, widespread genome sequencing efforts and technological advancements have profoundly altered what we can do. There have been many developments in technology to create transgenic animals since we first met at Granlibakken in 1997, including the advent of somatic cell nuclear transfer-based cloning and gene editing. We can now create new transgenes that will express when and where we want and can target precisely in the genome where we want to make a change or insert a transgene. With the large number of sequenced genomes, we have unprecedented access to sequence information including, control regions, coding regions, and known allelic variants. These technological developments have ushered in new and renewed enthusiasm for the production of transgenic animals among scientists and animal agriculturalists around the world, both for the production of more relevant biomedical research models as well as for agricultural applications. However, even though great advancements have been made in our ability to control gene expression and target genetic changes in our animals, there still are no genetically engineered animal products on the market for food. World-wide there has been a failure of the regulatory processes to effectively move forward. Estimates suggest the world will need to increase our current food production 70 % by 2050; that is we will have to produce the total amount of food each year that has been consumed by mankind over the past 500 years. The combination of transgenic animal technology and gene editing will become increasingly more important tools to help feed the world. However, to date the practical benefits of these technologies have not yet reached consumers in any country and in the absence of predictable, science-based regulatory programs it is unlikely that the benefits will be realized in the short to medium term. PMID:26820413

  6. 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

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. CRISPR/Cas9: a powerful genetic engineering tool for establishing large animal models of neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Tu, Zhuchi; Yang, Weili; Yan, Sen; Guo, Xiangyu; Li, Xiao-Jiang

    2015-01-01

    Animal models are extremely valuable to help us understand the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative disorders and to find treatments for them. Since large animals are more like humans than rodents, they make good models to identify the important pathological events that may be seen in humans but not in small animals; large animals are also very important for validating effective treatments or confirming therapeutic targets. Due to the lack of embryonic stem cell lines from large animals, it has been difficult to use traditional gene targeting technology to establish large animal models of neurodegenerative diseases. Recently, CRISPR/Cas9 was used successfully to genetically modify genomes in various species. Here we discuss the use of CRISPR/Cas9 technology to establish large animal models that can more faithfully mimic human neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:26238861

  11. 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 1 year, 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

  12. 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.

  13. Genetic engineering and pharmaceuticals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vane, John; Cuatrecasas, Pedro

    1984-11-01

    Genetic engineering now allows biological synthesis and large-scale production of several proteins with therapeutic potential. The principal challenge in this sphere is to identify new, medically and commercially significant targets - the province of cell biologists, physiologists and biochemists. In the future, genetic engineering will surely provide invaluable tools for the study of the molecular basis of cellular control and pathophysiology, which will permit biochemists and medicinal chemists to design novel medicines.

  14. 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.

  15. (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.

  16. Genetically Engineering Entomopathogenic Fungi.

    PubMed

    Zhao, H; Lovett, B; Fang, W

    2016-01-01

    Entomopathogenic fungi have been developed as environmentally friendly alternatives to chemical insecticides in biocontrol programs for agricultural pests and vectors of disease. However, mycoinsecticides currently have a small market share due to low virulence and inconsistencies in their performance. Genetic engineering has made it possible to significantly improve the virulence of fungi and their tolerance to adverse conditions. Virulence enhancement has been achieved by engineering fungi to express insect proteins and insecticidal proteins/peptides from insect predators and other insect pathogens, or by overexpressing the pathogen's own genes. Importantly, protein engineering can be used to mix and match functional domains from diverse genes sourced from entomopathogenic fungi and other organisms, producing insecticidal proteins with novel characteristics. Fungal tolerance to abiotic stresses, especially UV radiation, has been greatly improved by introducing into entomopathogens a photoreactivation system from an archaean and pigment synthesis pathways from nonentomopathogenic fungi. Conversely, gene knockout strategies have produced strains with reduced ecological fitness as recipients for genetic engineering to improve virulence; the resulting strains are hypervirulent, but will not persist in the environment. Coupled with their natural insect specificity, safety concerns can also be mitigated by using safe effector proteins with selection marker genes removed after transformation. With the increasing public concern over the continued use of synthetic chemical insecticides and growing public acceptance of genetically modified organisms, new types of biological insecticides produced by genetic engineering offer a range of environmentally friendly options for cost-effective control of insect pests. PMID:27131325

  17. 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…

  18. 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.

  19. 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)

  20. Genetic engineering and the patent office

    SciTech Connect

    Sheldon, J.G.; Anderson, D.L.

    1987-10-01

    Higher life forms created through genetic engineering are now recognized as potentially patentable. On 7 April 1987, the US Patent and Trademark Office announced that it now considers non-naturally occurring non-human multi-cellular living organisms, including animals, to be patentable subject matter. The response to this announcement has been an emotion controversy centering on the patent office. The announcement has become the lightning rod for all of the practical and moral questions surrounding the overwhelming potential of genetic engineering. Environmentalists claim that genetic engineering will ruin the ecology. The Humane Society of the US, headquartered in Washington, DC, claims that genetic engineering will cause undo suffering to animals produced through genetic experiments and may ultimately lead to the demise of overly engineered animal species. Religious fundamentalists claim that genetic engineering is wrongfully tinkering with the handiwork of the Almighty. While it may be good that such questions are being raised, the patent office is being wrongly singled out as the source of the problem. This paper discusses the legal problems that patents on new lifeforms have caused.

  1. 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

  2. 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)

  3. Genetically engineered vaccines.

    PubMed

    Thomas, Wayne R; Hales, Belinda J; Smith, Wendy-Anne

    2005-05-01

    The application of recombinant DNA technology to allergen research has provided the sequence information and genetic material to produce new types of allergy vaccines. One general strategy has been to use the knowledge to produce synthetic peptides that represent selected T-cell or B-cell epitopes. The production of genetically engineered allergens provides an alternative strategy to construct hypoallergenic vaccines, which can provide a better and less selected representation of the epitopes. Many strategies have been used to produce such hypoallergens, and their ability to reduce allergenicity has been amply demonstrated by skin and nasal provocation tests. The retention of T cell-stimulating activity has also been demonstrated, and a consistent feature of the vaccines has been, despite the reduced immunoglobulin E (IgE)-binding reactivity, the ability to induce anti-allergen IgG antibody. The lead hypoallergens have been polypeptide fragments and trimeric constructs of the birch allergen Bet v 1. A clinical trial with these medicaments has shown the ability to modify IgE and IgG antibody production, skin test reactivity, and symptom scores. This is the first trial of a recombinant allergy vaccine, and it has set a benchmark for further studies. A new generation of hypoallergens is now being produced based on the detailed knowledge of the tertiary structures of the allergens and of the T-cell and B-cell epitopes. The modifications have been made to change the topography of the allergens while retaining a stable, folding structure. In the case of Bet v 1, tertiary structures of hypoallergens have been determined. Structurally modeled hypoallergens have been produced for pollen, venom, food, and latex allergens, with promising characteristics from preclinical studies. PMID:15842957

  4. 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)

  5. 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...

  6. Engineering genetic injustice.

    PubMed

    Wenz, Peter

    2005-02-01

    In their jointly written book, From Chance to Choice: Genetics and Justice, Allen Buchanan, Dan Brock, Norman Daniels and Daniel Wikler defend 'the development and deployment of genetic intervention technologies..', including genetic enhancements, against charges that they exacerbate injustice. The present paper examines some of their arguments. The first section shows that the authors confuse real societies with just societies. The second shows that without this confusion, their arguments reveal the enormous justice-impairing potential of deploying genetic enhancements in such societies as the United States. PMID:15812969

  7. Genetically modified animals and pharmacological research.

    PubMed

    Wells, Dominic J

    2010-01-01

    This chapter reviews the use of genetically modified animals and the increasingly detailed knowledge of the genomes of the domestic species. The different approaches to genetic modification are outlined as are the advantages and disadvantages of the techniques in different species. Genetically modified mice have been fundamental in understanding gene function and in generating affordable models of human disease although these are not without their drawbacks. Transgenic farm animals have been developed for nutritionally enhanced food, disease resistance and xenografting. Transgenic rabbits, goats, sheep and cows have been developed as living bioreactors producing potentially high value biopharmaceuticals, commonly referred to as "pharming". Domestic animals are also important as a target as well as for testing genetic-based therapies for both inherited and acquired disease. This latter field may be the most important of all, in the future development of novel therapies. PMID:20204589

  8. Genetic engineering of Minnesota superfish.

    PubMed

    Hackett, P B

    1996-01-01

    There is a chronic need to develop growth-enhanced fish for aquaculture. To meet this need we have developed techniques for genetically engineering fish to grow larger and faster. We found that the major difficulty in genetically engineering fish is the extremely high rate of mosaicism due to the late integration of transgenes into the genome. This delay also reduces the chances of passage of the transgene through the germ line. Consequently, we have engineered new vectors and mechanisms for accelerating the rate of integration of exogenous DNA into fish chromosomes. PMID:8652135

  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. Genetic engineering of Geobacillus spp.

    PubMed

    Kananavičiūtė, Rūta; Čitavičius, Donaldas

    2015-04-01

    Members of the genus Geobacillus are thermophiles that are of great biotechnological importance, since they are sources of many thermostable enzymes. Because of their metabolic versatility, geobacilli can be used as whole-cell catalysts in processes such as bioconversion and bioremediation. The effective employment of Geobacillus spp. requires the development of reliable methods for genetic engineering of these bacteria. Currently, genetic manipulation tools and protocols are under rapid development. However, there are several convenient cloning vectors, some of which replicate autonomously, while others are suitable for the genetic modification of chromosomal genes. Gene expression systems are also intensively studied. Combining these tools together with proper techniques for DNA transfer, some Geobacillus strains were shown to be valuable producers of recombinant proteins and industrially important biochemicals, such as ethanol or isobutanol. This review encompasses the progress made in the genetic engineering of Geobacillus spp. and surveys the vectors and transformation methods that are available for this genus. PMID:25659824

  11. "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.

  12. Animal Genetic Resource Trade Flows: Economic Assessment

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Throughout human history, livestock producers have relied on a vibrant international exchange of genetic resources to achieve improvements in the quality and productivity of their animals. In recent years, however, some observers have argued that changes in the legal, technological, and economic env...

  13. 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)

  14. Recent advances in small animal genetics.

    PubMed

    Bannasch, Danika L; Hughes, Angela M

    2006-05-01

    The whole genome sequence of the dog is complete, and partial sequencing of the cat genome is underway. Sequences allow the molecular basis for inherited diseases to be more easily determined, leading to development of DNA tests to verify carrier and affected states as well as potential gene therapy for the treatment of those diseases. To help veterinarians provide genetic services to their clients, the molecular genetic tests currently available are listed in this article. In addition, cloning of small animals is now available to clients on a commercial basis. Information about the cloning process and possible health issues in clones are discussed. PMID:16564409

  15. 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

  16. Genetically Engineered Mouse Models of Pituitary Tumors

    PubMed Central

    Cano, David A.; Soto-Moreno, Alfonso; Leal-Cerro, Alfonso

    2014-01-01

    Animal models constitute valuable tools for investigating the pathogenesis of cancer as well as for preclinical testing of novel therapeutics approaches. However, the pathogenic mechanisms of pituitary-tumor formation remain poorly understood, particularly in sporadic adenomas, thus, making it a challenge to model pituitary tumors in mice. Nevertheless, genetically engineered mouse models (GEMMs) of pituitary tumors have provided important insight into pituitary tumor biology. In this paper, we review various GEMMs of pituitary tumors, highlighting their contributions and limitations, and discuss opportunities for research in the field. PMID:25136513

  17. 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

  18. Genetic engineering of laboratory and livestock mammals.

    PubMed

    Wagner, T E; Murray, F A

    1985-01-01

    Recent advances in recombinant genetics have made possible the transfer of cloned genes from one organism to the genome of another. Research with mice made transgenic by insertion of rat or human genes has provided direct evidence that transferred genes can be incorporated into the germline and expressed in the recipient. Current technology for gene transfer involves microinjection of the recombinant genes into the male pronucleus of the zygote. Resulting transgenic mice, when mated as adults, produced offspring that contained and expressed the transgenes. These observations serve as indications of the possibilities that exist for genetic engineering in livestock species. Although there are some technical problems to be overcome before livestock embryos can be genetically altered by these means, the genes for producing growth hormone transgenic livestock are currently available, and research groups are working toward this objective. In addition to this work with growth hormone genes, there are many other potential applications for genetic engineering livestock to produce more highly efficient production; however, there is considerable research to be done before the full potential of this technology can be achieved. It will be necessary to identify other genes that have potential for improving the production efficiency of livestock, and it will be necessary to gain a more complete understanding of the developmental and molecular biology of livestock. The potential impact of this technology in farm animal production is enormous, but, in the short term, it will be a costly endeavor. PMID:3908432

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. Advances in genetic engineering of marine algae.

    PubMed

    Qin, Song; Lin, Hanzhi; Jiang, Peng

    2012-01-01

    Algae are a component of bait sources for animal aquaculture, and they produce abundant valuable compounds for the chemical industry and human health. With today's fast growing demand for algae biofuels and the profitable market for cosmetics and pharmaceuticals made from algal natural products, the genetic engineering of marine algae has been attracting increasing attention as a crucial systemic technology to address the challenge of the biomass feedstock supply for sustainable industrial applications and to modify the metabolic pathway for the more efficient production of high-value products. Nevertheless, to date, only a few marine algae species can be genetically manipulated. In this article, an updated account of the research progress in marine algal genomics is presented along with methods for transformation. In addition, vector construction and gene selection strategies are reviewed. Meanwhile, a review on the progress of bioreactor technologies for marine algae culture is also revisited. PMID:22634258

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. Large genetic animal models of Huntington's Disease.

    PubMed

    Morton, A Jennifer; Howland, David S

    2013-01-01

    The dominant nature of the Huntington's disease gene mutation has allowed genetic models to be developed in multiple species, with the mutation causing an abnormal neurological phenotype in all animals in which it is expressed. Many different rodent models have been generated. The most widely used of these, the transgenic R6/2 mouse, carries the mutation in a fragment of the human huntingtin gene and has a rapidly progressive and fatal neurological phenotype with many relevant pathological changes. Nevertheless, their rapid decline has been frequently questioned in the context of a disease that takes years to manifest in humans, and strenuous efforts have been made to make rodent models that are genetically more 'relevant' to the human condition, including full length huntingtin gene transgenic and knock-in mice. While there is no doubt that we have learned, and continue to learn much from rodent models, their usefulness is limited by two species constraints. First, the brains of rodents differ significantly from humans in both their small size and their neuroanatomical organization. Second, rodents have much shorter lifespans than humans. Here, we review new approaches taken to these challenges in the development of models of Huntington's disease in large brained, long-lived animals. We discuss the need for such models, and how they might be used to fill specific niches in preclinical Huntington's disease research, particularly in testing gene-based therapeutics. We discuss the advantages and disadvantages of animals in which the prodromal period of disease extends over a long time span. We suggest that there is considerable 'value added' for large animal models in preclinical Huntington's disease research. PMID:25063426

  5. 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

  6. Genetically engineered livestock for biomedical models.

    PubMed

    Rogers, Christopher S

    2016-06-01

    To commemorate Transgenic Animal Research Conference X, this review summarizes the recent progress in developing genetically engineered livestock species as biomedical models. The first of these conferences was held in 1997, which turned out to be a watershed year for the field, with two significant events occurring. One was the publication of the first transgenic livestock animal disease model, a pig with retinitis pigmentosa. Before that, the use of livestock species in biomedical research had been limited to wild-type animals or disease models that had been induced or were naturally occurring. The second event was the report of Dolly, a cloned sheep produced by somatic cell nuclear transfer. Cloning subsequently became an essential part of the process for most of the models developed in the last 18 years and is stilled used prominently today. This review is intended to highlight the biomedical modeling achievements that followed those key events, many of which were first reported at one of the previous nine Transgenic Animal Research Conferences. Also discussed are the practical challenges of utilizing livestock disease models now that the technical hurdles of model development have been largely overcome. PMID:26820410

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. Genetic engineering for high methionine grain legumes.

    PubMed

    Müntz, K; Christov, V; Saalbach, G; Saalbach, I; Waddell, D; Pickardt, T; Schieder, O; Wüstenhagen, T

    1998-08-01

    Methionine (Met) is the primary limiting essential amino acid in grain legumes. The imbalance in amino acid composition restricts their biological value (BV) to 55 to 75% of that of animal protein. So far improvement of the BV could not be achieved by conventional breeding. Therefore, genetic engineering was employed by several laboratories to resolve the problem. Three strategies have been followed. A) Engineering for increased free Met levels; B) engineering of endogenous storage proteins with increased numbers of Met residues; C) transfer of foreign genes encoding Met-rich proteins, e.g. the Brazil nut 2S albumin (BNA) and its homologue from sunflower, into grain legumes. The latter strategy turned out to be most promising. In all cases the gene was put under the control of a developmentally regulated seed specific promoter and transferred into grain legumes using the bacterial Agrobacterium tumefaciens-system. Integration into and copy numbers in the plant genome as well as Mendelian inheritance and gene dosage effects were verified. After correct precursor processing the mature 2S albumin was intracellularly deposited in protein bodies which are part of the vacuolar compartment. The foreign protein amounted to 5 to 10% of the total seed protein in the best transgenic lines of narbon bean (Vicia narbonensis L., used in the authors' laboratories), lupins (Lupinus angustifolius L., used in CSIRO, Australia), and soybean (Glycine max (L.) Merr., used by Pioneer Hi-Bred, Inc., USA). In the narbon bean the increase of Met was directly related to the amount of 2S albumin in the transgenic seeds, but in soybean it remained below the theoretically expected value. Nevertheless, trangenic soybean reached 100%, whereas narbon bean and lupins reached approximately 80% of the FAO-standard for nutritionally balanced food proteins. These results document that the Met problem of grain legumes can be resolved by genetic engineering. PMID:9739551

  10. Engineering to support wellbeing of dairy animals.

    PubMed

    Caja, Gerardo; Castro-Costa, Andreia; Knight, Christopher H

    2016-05-01

    Current trends in the global milk market and the recent abolition of milk quotas have accelerated the trend of the European dairy industry towards larger farm sizes and higher-yielding animals. Dairy cows remain in focus, but there is a growing interest in other dairy species, whose milk is often directed to traditional and protected designation of origin and gourmet dairy products. The challenge for dairy farms in general is to achieve the best possible standards of animal health and welfare, together with high lactational performance and minimal environmental impact. For larger farms, this may need to be done with a much lower ratio of husbandry staff to animals. Recent engineering advances and the decreasing cost of electronic technologies has allowed the development of 'sensing solutions' that automatically collect data, such as physiological parameters, production measures and behavioural traits. Such data can potentially help the decision making process, enabling early detection of health or wellbeing problems in individual animals and hence the application of appropriate corrective husbandry practices. This review focuses on new knowledge and emerging developments in welfare biomarkers (e.g. stress and metabolic diseases), activity-based welfare assessment (e.g. oestrus and lameness detection) and sensors of temperature and pH (e.g. calving alert and rumen function) and their combination and integration into 'smart' husbandry support systems that will ensure optimum wellbeing for dairy animals and thereby maximise farm profitability. Use of novel sensors combined with new technologies for information handling and communication are expected to produce dramatic changes in traditional dairy farming systems. PMID:27210489

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. What is morally distinctive about genetic engineering?

    PubMed

    Porter, J

    1990-01-01

    It sometimes seems that genetic engineering is suspect, both to its practitioners and to the general public, because it is perceived as being somehow unnatural. This essay argues, on the basis of an analysis of two senses of "natural," that there is nothing distinctively morally problematic about genetic engineering, at least on the grounds of its alleged unnaturalness. It does not follow that we cannot distinguish among morally legitimate and morally suspect uses of genetic engineering. But these distinctions can and should be drawn on the basis of the same considerations that enter into the evaluation of particular uses of any other medical procedure. PMID:2078584

  14. 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…

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. Genetic engineering and dental caries.

    PubMed

    Agarwal, Shipra; Pandit, I K; Srivastava, Nikhil; Gugnani, Neeraj

    2003-01-01

    Dental caries, a multifactorial disease requires four principle factor: the host, the microflora, the substrate & time for its occurrence and can be prevented or managed by elimination/modification of either of the above factors. The conventional preventive measure being followed for long time for the dental caries are not successful to the desirable extent due to their non avaibailaballity in the rural areas, lack of awareness & inaccessibility of dental services. Therefore, the focus has now been shifted to submicroscopic level to ensure that these measures can be reached to the farthest areas & each & every member of the population is benefitted. Few of the measures taken are. i) Genetically modifying the S. Mutans: ii) Searching The antagonist peptides to work against the specific enzyme system (Glucosyltransferase) of S. Mutans. iii) Changing the oral environment by those Genetically modified organisms that will produce bases (instead of acids) & these bases provides a milieu favoring remineralization. This paper discusses various ways in which genetically modified strains of microogranisms or genetically modified strains of microogranisms of genetically modified foods can help in the prevention of caries. PMID:15328998

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Genetic Engineering Strategies for Enhanced Biodiesel Production.

    PubMed

    Hegde, Krishnamoorthy; Chandra, Niharika; Sarma, Saurabh Jyoti; Brar, Satinder Kaur; Veeranki, Venkata Dasu

    2015-07-01

    The focus on biodiesel research has shown a tremendous growth over the last few years. Several microbial and plant sources are being explored for the sustainable biodiesel production to replace the petroleum diesel. Conventional methods of biodiesel production have several limitations related to yield and quality, which led to development of new engineering strategies to improve the biodiesel production in plants, and microorganisms. Substantial progress in utilizing algae, yeast, and Escherichia coli for the renewable production of biodiesel feedstock via genetic engineering of fatty acid metabolic pathways has been reported in the past few years. However, in most of the cases, the successful commercialization of such engineering strategies for sustainable biodiesel production is yet to be seen. This paper systematically presents the drawbacks in the conventional methods for biodiesel production and an exhaustive review on the present status of research in genetic engineering strategies for production of biodiesel in plants, and microorganisms. Further, we summarize the technical challenges need to be tackled to make genetic engineering technology economically sustainable. Finally, the need and prospects of genetic engineering technology for the sustainable biodiesel production and the recommendations for the future research are discussed. PMID:25902752

  2. 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)

  3. 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...

  4. Genetic engineering strategies for environmental applications.

    PubMed

    de Lorenzo, V

    1992-06-01

    Environmental applications of genetically engineered microorganisms are currently hampered not only by legal regulations restricting their release, but also by the frequent dearth of adequate genetic tools for their construction in the laboratory. Recent approaches to strain development include the use of non-antibiotic markers as selection determinants, the use of transposon-vectors for the permanent acquisition of recombinant genes, and the utilization of expression devices based on promoters from promiscuous plasmids and biodegradative pathway genes. PMID:1369388

  5. 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. PMID:26414877

  6. Genetic typing of Malassezia pachydermatis from different domestic animals.

    PubMed

    Castellá, G; Hernández, J J; Cabañes, F J

    2005-07-01

    In the present study, random amplification of polymorphic DNA, which detects DNA polymorphism in fungal genomic DNA, was applied for genetic typing of Malassezia pachydermatis isolates. Fifty-five isolates from different domestic animals and body sites and the neotype strain CBS 1879 were characterized. Primers M13 and OPT-20 were used to analyse their genetic relatedness and similarity. This technique allowed us to distinguish four different genetic types. The predominant genetic type was observed in isolates recovered from different anatomical locations in all animals. It was the only genetic type found in cats, horse, goat and pig. The other three genetic types were observed only in isolates from external ear canals of dogs. Types II and IV were only recovered from external otitic ears and type III from healthy ears. An animal was colonised by more than one type of M. pachydermatis and different genetic types were detected in the same body site. Some genetic types were only isolated from diseased skin. PMID:15922521

  7. Pluripotent stem cells and livestock genetic engineering.

    PubMed

    Soto, Delia A; Ross, Pablo J

    2016-06-01

    The unlimited proliferative ability and capacity to contribute to germline chimeras make pluripotent embryonic stem cells (ESCs) perfect candidates for complex genetic engineering. The utility of ESCs is best exemplified by the numerous genetic models that have been developed in mice, for which such cells are readily available. However, the traditional systems for mouse genetic engineering may not be practical for livestock species, as it requires several generations of mating and selection in order to establish homozygous founders. Nevertheless, the self-renewal and pluripotent characteristics of ESCs could provide advantages for livestock genetic engineering such as ease of genetic manipulation and improved efficiency of cloning by nuclear transplantation. These advantages have resulted in many attempts to isolate livestock ESCs, yet it has been generally concluded that the culture conditions tested so far are not supportive of livestock ESCs self-renewal and proliferation. In contrast, there are numerous reports of derivation of livestock induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), with demonstrated capacity for long term proliferation and in vivo pluripotency, as indicated by teratoma formation assay. However, to what extent these iPSCs represent fully reprogrammed PSCs remains controversial, as most livestock iPSCs depend on continuous expression of reprogramming factors. Moreover, germline chimerism has not been robustly demonstrated, with only one successful report with very low efficiency. Therefore, even 34 years after derivation of mouse ESCs and their extensive use in the generation of genetic models, the livestock genetic engineering field can stand to gain enormously from continued investigations into the derivation and application of ESCs and iPSCs. PMID:26894405

  8. Engineering Genetically Encoded FRET Sensors

    PubMed Central

    Lindenburg, Laurens; Merkx, Maarten

    2014-01-01

    Förster 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

  9. Genetic engineering of parthenocarpic plants.

    PubMed

    Rotino, G L; Perri, E; Zottini, M; Sommer, H; Spena, A

    1997-12-01

    Transgenic tobacco and eggplants expressing the coding region of the iaaM gene from Pseudomonas syringae pv. savastanoi, under the control of the regulatory sequences of the ovule-specific DefH9 gene from Antirrhinum majus, showed parthenocarpic fruit development. Expression of the DefH9-iaaM chimeric transgene occurs during flower development in both tobacco and eggplant. Seedless fruits were produced by emasculated flowers. When pollinated, the parthenocarpic plants produced fruits containing seeds. In eggplant, the genetic manipulation allowed fruit set and growth under environmental conditions prohibitive for fruit setting in the untransformed line, which did not set fruit at all. Under normal environmental conditions, production of marketable fruits took place from pollinated and unpollinated transgenic flowers, while flowers of untransformed control plants did produce fruits of marketable size only from fertilized flowers. PMID:9415894

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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)

  14. Chromosome engineering: power tools for plant genetics.

    PubMed

    Chan, Simon W L

    2010-12-01

    The term "chromosome engineering" describes technologies in which chromosomes are manipulated to change their mode of genetic inheritance. This review examines recent innovations in chromosome engineering that promise to greatly increase the efficiency of plant breeding. Haploid Arabidopsis thaliana have been produced by altering the kinetochore protein CENH3, yielding instant homozygous lines. Haploid production will facilitate reverse breeding, a method that downregulates recombination to ensure progeny contain intact parental chromosomes. Another chromosome engineering success is the conversion of meiosis into mitosis, which produces diploid gametes that are clones of the parent plant. This is a key step in apomixis (asexual reproduction through seeds) and could help to preserve hybrid vigor in the future. New homologous recombination methods in plants will potentiate many chromosome engineering applications. PMID:20933291

  15. 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

  16. 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...

  17. 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

  18. Genetic engineering: frost damage trial halted.

    PubMed

    Budiansky, S

    The University of California at Berkeley has announced the postponement of a planned experiment involving the field testing of bacteria genetically engineered to reduce frost damage to crops. The action came after Jeremy Rifkin, who had earlier filed suit against the National Institutes of Health after its Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee had approved the experiment, threatened to seek a temporary restraining order against the university to halt the experiment. PMID:6578420

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. Genetically engineering adenoviral vectors for gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Coughlan, Lynda

    2014-01-01

    Adenoviral (Ad) vectors are commonly used for various gene therapy applications. Significant advances in the genetic engineering of Ad vectors in recent years has highlighted their potential for the treatment of metastatic disease. There are several methods to genetically modify the Ad genome to incorporate retargeting peptides which will redirect the natural tropism of the viruses, including homologous recombination in bacteria or yeast. However, homologous recombination in yeast is highly efficient and can be achieved without the need for extensive cloning strategies. In addition, the method does not rely on the presence of unique restriction sites within the Ad genome and the reagents required for this method are widely available and inexpensive. Large plasmids containing the entire adenoviral genome (~36 kbp) can be modified within Saccharomyces cerevisiae yeast and genomes easily rescued in Escherichia coli hosts for analysis or amplification. A method for two-step homologous recombination in yeast is described in this chapter. PMID:24243238

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. 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)

  6. 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)

  7. Animal nutrition with feeds from genetically modified plants.

    PubMed

    Flachowsky, Gerhard; Chesson, Andrew; Aulrich, Karen

    2005-02-01

    Plant breeders have made and will continue to make important contributions toward meeting the need for more and better feed and food. The use of new techniques to modify the genetic makeup of plants to improve their properties has led to a new generation of crops, grains and their by-products for feed. The use of ingredients and products from genetically modified plants (GMP) in animal nutrition properly raises many questions and issues, such as the role of a nutritional assessment of the modified feed or feed additive as part of safety assessment, the possible influence of genetically modified (GM) products on animal health and product quality and the persistence of the recombinant DNA and of the 'novel' protein in the digestive tract and tissues of food-producing animals. During the last few years many studies have determined the nutrient value of GM feeds compared to their conventional counterparts and some have additionally followed the fate of DNA and novel protein. The results available to date are reassuring and reveal no significant differences in the safety and nutritional value of feedstuffs containing material derived from the so-called 1st generation of genetically modified plants (those with unchanged gross composition) in comparison with non-GM varieties. In addition, no residues of recombinant DNA or novel proteins have been found in any organ or tissue samples obtained from animals fed with GMP. These results indicate that for compositionally equivalent GMP routine-feeding studies with target species generally add little to nutritional and safety assessment. However, the strategies devised for the nutritional and safety assessment of the 1st generation products will be much more difficult to apply to 2nd generation GMP in which significant changes in constituents have been deliberately introduced (e.g., increased fatty acids or amino acids content or a reduced concentration of undesirable constituents). It is suggested that studies made with animals will play a much more important role in insuring the safety of these 2nd generation constructs. PMID:15889650

  8. Seeking perfection: a Kantian look at human genetic engineering.

    PubMed

    Gunderson, Martin

    2007-01-01

    It is tempting to argue that Kantian moral philosophy justifies prohibiting both human germ-line genetic engineering and non-therapeutic genetic engineering because they fail to respect human dignity. There are, however, good reasons for resisting this temptation. In fact, Kant's moral philosophy provides reasons that support genetic engineering-even germ-line and non-therapeutic. This is true of Kant's imperfect duties to seek one's own perfection and the happiness of others. It is also true of the categorical imperative. Kant's moral philosophy does, however, provide limits to justifiable genetic engineering. PMID:17516148

  9. 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

  10. 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.

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

    PubMed

    Mousseau, Timothy A; Møller, 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

  12. 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

  13. Agrobacterium: nature’s 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 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

  14. Modularization of genetic elements promotes synthetic metabolic engineering.

    PubMed

    Qi, Hao; Li, Bing-Zhi; Zhang, Wen-Qian; Liu, Duo; Yuan, Ying-Jin

    2015-11-15

    In the context of emerging synthetic biology, metabolic engineering is moving to the next stage powered by new technologies. Systematical modularization of genetic elements makes it more convenient to engineer biological systems for chemical production or other desired purposes. In the past few years, progresses were made in engineering metabolic pathway using synthetic biology tools. Here, we spotlighted the topic of implementation of modularized genetic elements in metabolic engineering. First, we overviewed the principle developed for modularizing genetic elements and then discussed how the genetic modules advanced metabolic engineering studies. Next, we picked up some milestones of engineered metabolic pathway achieved in the past few years. Last, we discussed the rapid raised synthetic biology field of "building a genome" and the potential in metabolic engineering. PMID:25868805

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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

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

    PubMed

    Ibrahim, Abdulrazak B; Aragão, 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. 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…

  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. 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...

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. 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.

  8. 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…

  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. 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

  11. The Genetic Engineering of Motor Proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hartz, Rachael M.

    Molecular motors are a remarkable feature within living organisms that are responsible for directional mechanical motion, which is driven by adenosine triphosphate (ATP) hydrolysis. Actin-binding molecular motors are of specific interest in the field of nanotechnology as filamentous actin is capable of carrying cargo, such as quantum dots, while it is translocated along a motor coated surface. The binding regions of motor proteins, which are known to interact with actin, such as Myosin, have been thoroughly examined and identified. Rapid genetic engineering of the ATP-hydrolyzing enzyme, adenosine kinase, to incorporate these binding regions is possible through the use of site- directed mutagenesis. The sequences, which were mutated into the ADK wt gene, were incorporated in an unstructured loop region. During the phosphate transfer, the mutants switch between open and closed conformational states. The binding affinity of the sequences to the actin is altered during this conformational switch, thus causing the motor to move along actin filament. The ADK mutants and their interaction with filamentous actin was monitored by an in vitro motility assay. Two different mutants of ADK were found to have retained enzymatic functionality after the mutagenesis as well as function as actin-based motor proteins.

  12. Genetic engineering of industrial strains of Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

    PubMed

    Le Borgne, Sylvie

    2012-01-01

    Genetic engineering has been successfully applied to Saccharomyces cerevisiae laboratory strains for different purposes: extension of substrate range, improvement of productivity and yield, elimination of by-products, improvement of process performance and cellular properties, and extension of product range. The potential of genetically engineered yeasts for the massive production of biofuels as bioethanol and other nonfuel products from renewable resources as lignocellulosic biomass hydrolysates has been recognized. For such applications, robust industrial strains of S. cerevisiae have to be used. Here, some relevant genetic and genomic characteristics of industrial strains are discussed in relation to the problematic of the genetic engineering of such strains. General molecular tools applicable to the manipulation of S. cerevisiae industrial strains are presented and examples of genetically engineered industrial strains developed for the production of bioethanol from lignocellulosic biomass are given. PMID:22160914

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. Genetic engineering of platelets to neutralize circulating tumor cells.

    PubMed

    Li, Jiahe; Sharkey, Charles C; Wun, Brittany; Liesveld, Jane L; King, Michael R

    2016-04-28

    Mounting experimental evidence demonstrates that platelets support cancer metastasis. Within the circulatory system, platelets guard circulating tumor cells (CTCs) from immune elimination and promote their arrest at the endothelium, supporting CTC extravasation into secondary sites. Neutralization of CTCs in blood circulation can potentially attenuate metastases to distant organs. Therefore, extensive studies have explored the blockade of platelet-CTC interactions as an anti-metastatic strategy. Such an intervention approach, however, may cause bleeding disorders since the platelet-CTC interactions inherently rely on the blood coagulation cascade including platelet activation. On the other hand, platelets have been genetically engineered to correct inherited bleeding disorders in both animal models and human clinical trials. In this study, inspired by the physical association between platelets and CTCs, platelets were genetically modified to express surface-bound tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL), a cytokine known to induce apoptosis specifically in tumor cells. The TRAIL-expressing platelets were demonstrated to kill cancer cells in vitro and significantly reduce metastases in a mouse model of prostate cancer metastasis. Our results suggest that using platelets to produce and deliver cancer-specific therapeutics can provide a Trojan-horse strategy of neutralizing CTCs to attenuate metastasis. PMID:26921521

  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. "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)

  19. 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...

  20. 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...

  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. Genetic engineering within the adult brain: implications for molecular approaches to behavioral neuroscience.

    PubMed

    Lowenstein, P R; Castro, M G

    2001-08-01

    Currently, the most popular technology used to modify the molecular makeup of the nervous system is through germline modifications of early embryos. This allows to construct gene 'knock-ins' (gene overexpression) or 'knock-outs' (gene deletions). This technology leads to gene additions or deletions from the earliest developmental stages. This can potentially lead to compensatory genetic changes. The technology to achieve inducible and cell-type-specific changes in gene expression in transgenic animals has been established. However, it is not yet possible, to reliably turn a particular gene 'on' or 'off' exclusively in adult animals. Alternatively, the use of gene transfer technology in fully mature animals could overcome many of these shortcomings. Gene therapy is the use of nucleic acids as drugs, and uses gene transfer technology to genetically engineer adult animals. Viral and nonviral vectors have been modified to serve as vectors for nucleic acid sequences of interest. Thus, over the last two decades, methods have been developed to deliver particular nucleic acids directly to target tissues. Further technological advances allow delivery of transgenes or antisense mRNAs directly to predetermined cell types, as well as their delivery under the control of inducible promoter elements. Combined transgenic (i.e., germline modifications) and viral vector technology will also be very powerful in allowing the genetic modification of selected neuronal populations in adult animals. In this review, we discuss the potential of gene delivery to the brain to analyze the effect of genetic engineering of particular neuronal groups on behavior, as well as recent developments and applications of newly engineered vector systems to allow transgenesis within nervous structures of adult animals. PMID:11566216

  3. Statistics of Scientific Procedures on Living Animals 2012: another increase in experimentation - genetically-altered animals dominate again.

    PubMed

    Hudson-Shore, Michelle

    2013-09-01

    The Annual Statistics of Scientific Procedures on Living Animals Great Britain 2012 reveal that the level of animal experimentation in Great Britain continues to rise, with just over 4.1 million procedures being started in that year. Despite the previous year's indication that the dominance of the production and use of genetically-altered (GA, i.e. genetically-modified animals plus animals with harmful genetic defects) animal might be abating, it returned with a vengeance in 2012. Breeding increased from 43% to 48% of all procedures, and GA animals were involved in 59% of all the procedures. Indeed, if the breeding of these animals were removed from the statistics, the total number of procedures would actually decline by 2%. In order to honour their pledge to reduce animal use in science, the Coalition Government will have to address this issue. 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:24168136

  4. 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

  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. PMID:26387641

  6. 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…

  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. 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...

  11. 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...

  12. Field Performance of a Genetically Engineered Strain of Pink Bollworm

    PubMed Central

    Simmons, Gregory S.; McKemey, Andrew R.; Morrison, Neil I.; O'Connell, Sinead; Tabashnik, Bruce E.; Claus, John; Fu, Guoliang; Tang, Guolei; Sledge, Mickey; Walker, Adam S.; Phillips, Caroline E.; Miller, Ernie D.; Rose, Robert I.; Staten, Robert T.; Donnelly, Christl A.; Alphey, Luke

    2011-01-01

    Pest insects harm crops, livestock and human health, either directly or by acting as vectors of disease. The Sterile Insect Technique (SIT) – mass-release of sterile insects to mate with, and thereby control, their wild counterparts – has been used successfully for decades to control several pest species, including pink bollworm, a lepidopteran pest of cotton. Although it has been suggested that genetic engineering of pest insects provides potential improvements, there is uncertainty regarding its impact on their field performance. Discrimination between released and wild moths caught in monitoring traps is essential for estimating wild population levels. To address concerns about the reliability of current marking methods, we developed a genetically engineered strain of pink bollworm with a heritable fluorescent marker, to improve discrimination of sterile from wild moths. Here, we report the results of field trials showing that this engineered strain performed well under field conditions. Our data show that attributes critical to SIT in the field – ability to find a mate and to initiate copulation, as well as dispersal and persistence in the release area – were comparable between the genetically engineered strain and a standard strain. To our knowledge, these represent the first open-field experiments with a genetically engineered insect. The results described here provide encouragement for the genetic control of insect pests. PMID:21931649

  13. Genetically engineered Mengo virus vaccination of multiple captive wildlife species.

    PubMed

    Backues, K A; Hill, M; Palmenberg, A C; Miller, C; Soike, K F; Aguilar, R

    1999-04-01

    Encephalomyocarditis virus (EMCV), has caused the deaths of many species of animals in zoological parks and research institutions. The Audubon Park Zoo, (New Orleans, Louisiana, USA) attempted vaccination of several species with a killed EMCV vaccine with mixed results. This paper reports an attempt at vaccination against EMCV using a genetically engineered, live attenuated Mengo virus (vMC0) at the Audubon Park Zoo and Miami Metro Zoo, (Miami, Florida, USA) from December 1996 to June 1997. Several species of animals were vaccinated with vMC0, which is serologically indistinguishable from the field strain of EMCV. Serum samples were taken at the time of vaccination and again 21 days later, then submitted for serum neutralization titers against EMCV. The vaccinate species included red capped mangebey (Cercocebus torquatus), colobus (Colobus guereza), angolan colobus (Colobus angolensis), ruffed lemur (Lemur variegatus ruber and Lemur variegatus variegatus), back lemur (Lemur macaco), ring-tailed lemur (Lemur catta), siamang (Hylobates syndactylus), diana guenon (Cercopithicus diana), spider monkey (Ateles geoffroyi), common marmoset (Callithrix jacchus), talapoin monkey (Cercopithecus talapoin), Brazilian tapir (Tapirus terrestris), Baird's tapir (Tapirus bairdii), Malayan tapir (Tapirus indicus), dromedary camel (Camelus dromedarius), bactrian camel (Camelus bactrianus), gerenuk (Litocranius walleri), guanaco (Lama glama guanicoe), black duiker (Cephalophus niger), Vietnamese potbellied pig (Sus scrofa), babirusa (Babyrousa babyrussa), collard peccary (Tayass tajacu), and African crested porcupine (Hystrix africaeaustralis). The vaccine response was variable, with high virus neutralizing antibody titer responses in some primate species and mixed to poor responses for other species. No ill effects were seen with vaccination. PMID:10231768

  14. 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),...

  15. 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.

  16. 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...

  17. 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.

  18. [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

  19. 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.

  20. Illuminating Cancer Systems With Genetically-Engineered Mouse Models and Coupled Luciferase Reporters In Vivo

    PubMed Central

    Kocher, Brandon; Piwnica-Worms, David

    2013-01-01

    Bioluminescent imaging (BLI) is a powerful non-invasive tool that has dramatically accelerated the in vivo interrogation of cancer systems and longitudinal analysis of mouse models of cancer over the past decade. Various luciferase enzymes have been genetically engineered into mouse models (GEMMs) of cancer which permit investigation of cellular and molecular events associated with oncogenic transcription, post-transcriptional processing, protein-protein interactions, transformation and oncogene addiction in live cells and animals. Luciferase-coupled GEMMs ultimately serve as a non-invasive, repetitive, longitudinal, and physiological means by which cancer systems and therapeutic responses can be investigated accurately within the autochthonous context of a living animal. PMID:23585416

  1. Genetic program based data mining to reverse engineer digital logic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, James F., III; Nguyen, Thanh Vu H.

    2006-04-01

    A data mining based procedure for automated reverse engineering and defect discovery has been developed. The data mining algorithm for reverse engineering uses a genetic program (GP) as a data mining function. A genetic program is an algorithm based on the theory of evolution that automatically evolves populations of computer programs or mathematical expressions, eventually selecting one that is optimal in the sense it maximizes a measure of effectiveness, referred to as a fitness function. The system to be reverse engineered is typically a sensor. Design documents for the sensor are not available and conditions prevent the sensor from being taken apart. The sensor is used to create a database of input signals and output measurements. Rules about the likely design properties of the sensor are collected from experts. The rules are used to create a fitness function for the genetic program. Genetic program based data mining is then conducted. This procedure incorporates not only the experts' rules into the fitness function, but also the information in the database. The information extracted through this process is the internal design specifications of the sensor. Uncertainty related to the input-output database and the expert based rule set can significantly alter the reverse engineering results. Significant experimental and theoretical results related to GP based data mining for reverse engineering will be provided. Methods of quantifying uncertainty and its effects will be presented. Finally methods for reducing the uncertainty will be examined.

  2. 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

  3. Genetic engineering: Rifkin wins interim injunction.

    PubMed

    Budiansky, S

    A University of California field test of genetically altered bacteria has been halted by federal district court Judge John Sirica. His order is the result of a suit filed by Jeremy Rifkin challenging approval of the experiment by the Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee (RAC) of the National Institutes of Health. RAC has also been enjoined from considering similar NIH-funded trials while the case is pending. Rifkin claims that NIH failed to file environmental impact statements on the research. Sirica's preliminary ruling suggests that the final decision will be in Rifkin's favor, but the judge emphasized that he is weighing only the legal issues involved, not the scientific ones. PMID:6587185

  4. Genetically engineered plants get a green light.

    PubMed

    Norman, Colin

    1983-10-01

    The National Institutes of Health's Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee has given conditional approval to a proposal by the Cetus Madison Corporation to field test plants that have been genetically manipulated to resist some diseases. The committee made no recommendation, however, on another field test proposed by BioTechnica International Inc. Both proposals had been challenged by a coalition of environmental groups led by Jeremy Rifkin, who has now filed a freedom of information request to NIH asking for documents pertaining to their health and safety aspects. PMID:11644054

  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

    ... Organisms and Products Altered or Produced Through Genetic Engineering Which Are Plant Pests or Which There... produced through genetic engineering that are plant pests or that there is reason to believe are plant...' GE Kentucky bluegrass was also genetically engineered using genetic material from rice (Oryza...

  6. 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

  7. Genetic engineering applications to biotechnology in the genus Bacillus

    SciTech Connect

    Workman, W.E.; McLinden, J.H.; Dean, D.H.

    1986-06-09

    This review presents a global picture of current applications and capabilities of genetic engineering to biotechnology in Bacillus, particularly B. subtilis, so that the academic biotechnologist, the industrial microbiologist, and the manager may turn to one source to study this subject. 236 references.

  8. 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.

  9. 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

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

    PubMed

    Gün, Gökhan; 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

  11. 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…

  12. 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)

  13. 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

  14. 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...

  15. 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...

  16. 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...

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

    PubMed

    Cooper, David K C; 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. PMID:26365762

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. The use of animal models in developing the discipline of cardiovascular tissue engineering: a review.

    PubMed

    Rashid, S Tawqeer; Salacinski, Henryk J; Hamilton, George; Seifalian, Alexander M

    2004-04-01

    Cardiovascular disease remains one of the major causes of death and disability in the Western world. Tissue engineering offers the prospect of being able to meet the demand for replacement of heart valves, vessels for coronary and lower limb bypass surgery and the generation of cardiac tissue for addition to the diseased heart. In order to test prospective tissue-engineered devices, these constructs must first be proven in animal models before receiving CE marking or FDA approval for a clinical trial. The choice of animal depends on the nature of the tissue-engineered construct being tested. Factors that need to be considered include technical requirements of implanting the construct, availability of the animal, cost and ethical considerations. In this paper, we review the history of animal studies in cardiovascular tissue engineering and the uses of animal tissue as sources for tissue engineering. PMID:14697864

  1. Engineering design optimization using species-conserving genetic algorithms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Jian-Ping; Balazs, M. E.; Parks, G. T.

    2007-03-01

    The species conservation technique described here, in which the population of a genetic algorithm is divided into several groups according to their similarity, is inspired by ecology. Each group with similar characteristics is called a species and is centred on a dominating individual, called the species seed. A genetic algorithm based on this species conservation technique, called the species-conserving genetic algorithm (SCGA), was established and has been proved to be effective in finding multiple solutions of multimodal optimization problems. In this article, the SCGA is used to solve engineering design optimization problems. Different distance measures (measures of similarity) are investigated to analyse the performance of the SCGA. It is shown that the Euclidean distance is not the only possible basis for defining a species and sometimes may not make sense in engineering applications. Two structural design problems are used to demonstrate how the choice of a meaningful measure of similarity will help the exploration for significant designs.

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. 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)

  5. Genetically Engineered Mouse Models in Cancer Research

    PubMed Central

    Walrath, Jessica C.; Hawes, Jessica J.; Van Dyke, Terry; Reilly, Karlyne M.

    2012-01-01

    Mouse models of human cancer have played a vital role in understanding tumorigenesis and answering experimental questions that other systems cannot address. Advances continue to be made that allow better understanding of the mechanisms of tumor development, and therefore the identification of better therapeutic and diagnostic strategies. We review major advances that have been made in modeling cancer in the mouse and specific areas of research that have been explored with mouse models. For example, although there are differences between mice and humans, new models are able to more accurately model sporadic human cancers by specifically controlling timing and location of mutations, even within single cells. As hypotheses are developed in human and cell culture systems, engineered mice provide the most tractable and accurate test of their validity in vivo. For example, largely through the use of these models, the microenvironment has been established to play a critical role in tumorigenesis, since tumor development and the interaction with surrounding stroma can be studied as both evolve. These mouse models have specifically fueled our understanding of cancer initiation, immune system roles, tumor angiogenesis, invasion, and metastasis, and the relevance of molecular diversity observed among human cancers. Currently, these models are being designed to facilitate in vivo imaging to track both primary and metastatic tumor development from much earlier stages than previously possible. Finally, the approaches developed in this field to achieve basic understanding are emerging as effective tools to guide much needed development of treatment strategies, diagnostic strategies, and patient stratification strategies in clinical research. PMID:20399958

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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 world’s human population. T. gondii has a complex life cycle. Sexual development occurs only in the cat gut, while asexual replication and transmission occur i...

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. 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.

  17. Procedures for microencapsulation of enzymes, cells and genetically engineered microorganisms.

    PubMed

    Chang, T M; Prakash, S

    2001-03-01

    Methods to microencapsulate enzyme, cells, and genetically engineered cells have been described in this article. More specific examples of enzyme encapsulation include the microencapsulation of xanthine oxidase for Lesch-Nyhan disease; phenylalanine ammonia lyase for pheny, ketonuria and microencapsulation of multienzyme systems with cofactor recycling for multistep enzyme conversions. Methods for cell encapsulation include the details for encapsulating hepatocytes for liver failure and for gene therapy. This also includes the details of a novel two-step method for encapsulation of high concentrations of smaller cells. Another new approach is the detailed method of the encapsulation of genetically engineered Escherichia coli DH5 cells for lowering urea, ammonia, and other metabolites in kidney or, liver failure and other diseases. PMID:11434313

  18. 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

  19. 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; Kröger, 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

  20. 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

  1. 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 Agriculture’s 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...

  2. 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 ...

  3. 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…

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. Genetic engineering of the chloroplast: novel tools and new applications.

    PubMed

    Bock, Ralph

    2014-04-01

    The plastid genome represents an attractive target of genetic engineering in crop plants. Plastid transgenes often give high expression levels, can be stacked in operons and are largely excluded from pollen transmission. Recent research has greatly expanded our toolbox for plastid genome engineering and many new proof-of-principle applications have highlighted the enormous potential of the transplastomic technology in both crop improvement and the development of plants as bioreactors for the sustainable and cost-effective production of biopharmaceuticals, enzymes and raw materials for the chemical industry. This review describes recent technological advances with plastid transformation in seed plants. It focuses on novel tools for plastid genome engineering and transgene expression and summarizes progress with harnessing the potential of plastid transformation in biotechnology. PMID:24679252

  7. A Genetic Animal Model of Alcoholism for Screening Medications to Treat Addiction

    PubMed Central

    Bell, Richard L.; Hauser, Sheketha; Rodd, Zachary A.; Liang, Tiebing; Sari, Youssef; McClintick, Jeanette; Rahman, Shafiqur; Engleman, Eric A.

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this review is to present up-to-date pharmacological, genetic and behavioral findings from the alcohol-preferring P rat and summarize similar past work. Behaviorally, the focus will be on how the P rat meets criteria put forth for a valid animal model of alcoholism with a highlight on its use as an animal model of polysubstance abuse, including alcohol, nicotine and psychostimulants. Pharmacologically and genetically, the focus will be on the neurotransmitter and neuropeptide systems that have received the most attention: cholinergic, dopaminergic, GABAergic, glutamatergic, serotonergic, noradrenergic, corticotrophin releasing hormone, opioid, and neuropeptide Y. Herein we sought to place the P rat’s behavioral and neurochemical phenotypes, and to some extent its genotype, in the context of the clinical literature. After reviewing the findings thus far, this paper discusses future directions for expanding the use of this genetic animal model of alcoholism to identify molecular targets for treating drug addiction in general. PMID:27055615

  8. A Genetic Animal Model of Alcoholism for Screening Medications to Treat Addiction.

    PubMed

    Bell, R L; Hauser, S; Rodd, Z A; Liang, T; Sari, Y; McClintick, J; Rahman, S; Engleman, E A

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this review is to present up-to-date pharmacological, genetic, and behavioral findings from the alcohol-preferring P rat and summarize similar past work. Behaviorally, the focus will be on how the P rat meets criteria put forth for a valid animal model of alcoholism with a highlight on its use as an animal model of polysubstance abuse, including alcohol, nicotine, and psychostimulants. Pharmacologically and genetically, the focus will be on the neurotransmitter and neuropeptide systems that have received the most attention: cholinergic, dopaminergic, GABAergic, glutamatergic, serotonergic, noradrenergic, corticotrophin releasing hormone, opioid, and neuropeptide Y. Herein, we sought to place the P rat's behavioral and neurochemical phenotypes, and to some extent its genotype, in the context of the clinical literature. After reviewing the findings thus far, this chapter discusses future directions for expanding the use of this genetic animal model of alcoholism to identify molecular targets for treating drug addiction in general. PMID:27055615

  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. Animal model analysis of genetic (co)variances for growth traits in Japanese quail.

    PubMed

    Aggrey, S E; Cheng, K M

    1994-12-01

    Records of 1,530 Japanese quail were used to estimate heritabilities and genetic correlations based on a derivative-free restricted maximum likelihood (REML) method with an animal model and ANOVA. The animal model included fixed effects of hatch and sex, random effects of additive genetic value of the bird, and common environmental effect of the dam. Heritabilities estimated from REML for body weights at hatch, 7, 14, 21, and 28 d of age were .38, .12, .31, .12, and .44, respectively. Heritabilities estimates from the sire component of variance for the same traits were .57, .08, .28, .15, and .47. These values indicate that genetic progress can be made by selecting for either 14-d or 28-d body weight. Genetic correlation (REML) of .76 between body weights at 14 and 28 d of age indicates the possibility of improving body weight at 28 d of age by selecting for body weight at 14 d of age. PMID:7877938

  11. Animal genetic resources in Brazil: result of five centuries of natural selection.

    PubMed

    Mariante, A da S; Egito, A A

    2002-01-01

    Brazil has various species of domestic animals, which developed from breeds brought by the Portuguese settlers soon after their discovery. For five centuries, these breeds have been subjected to natural selection in specific environments. Today, they present characteristics adapted to the specific Brazilian environmental conditions. These breeds developed in Brazil are known as "Crioulo," "local," or naturalized. From the beginning of the 20th century, some exotic breeds, selected in temperate regions, have begun to be imported. Although more productive, these breeds do not have adaptive traits, such as resistance to disease and parasites found in breeds considered to be "native." Even so, little by little, they replaced the native breeds, to such an extent that the latter are in danger of extinction. In 1983, to avoid the loss of this important genetic material, the National Research Center for Genetic Resources and Biotechnology (Cenargen) of the Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation (Embrapa) decided to include conservation of animal genetic resources in its research program Conservation and Utilization of Genetic Resources. Until this time, they were only concerned with conservation of native plants. Conservation has been carried out by various research centers of Embrapa, universities, state research corporations, and private farmers, with a single coordinator at the national level, Cenargen. Specifically, conservation is being carried out by conservation nuclei, which are specific herds in which the animals are being conserved, situated in the habitats where the animals have been subjected to natural selection. This involves storage of semen and embryos from cattle, horses, buffaloes, donkeys, goats, sheep, and pigs. The Brazilian Animal Germplasm Bank is kept at Cenargen, which is responsible for the storage of semen and embryos of various breeds of domestic animals threatened with extinction, where almost 45,000 doses of semen and more than 200 embryos exist presently. An important challenge for this program is to make the different segments of society realize the importance of the conservation of animal genetic resources. PMID:11775972

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. 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...

  16. 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.

  17. Property rights and genetic engineering: developing nations at risk.

    PubMed

    Shrader-Frechette, Kristin

    2005-01-01

    Eighty percent of (commercial) genetically engineered seeds (GES) are designed only to resist herbicides. Letting farmers use more chemicals, they cut labor costs. But developing nations say GES cause food shortages, unemployment, resistant weeds, and extinction of native cultivars when "volunteers" drift nearby. While GES patents are reasonable, this paper argues many patent policies are not. The paper surveys GE technology, outlines John Locke's classic account of property rights, and argues that current patent policies must be revised to take account of Lockean ethical constraints. After answering a key objection, it provides concrete suggestions for implementing its ethical conclusions. PMID:15727008

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. Strategies to genetically engineer T cells for cancer immunotherapy.

    PubMed

    Spear, Timothy T; Nagato, Kaoru; Nishimura, Michael I

    2016-06-01

    Immunotherapy is one of the most promising and innovative approaches to treat cancer, viral infections, and other immune-modulated diseases. Adoptive immunotherapy using gene-modified T cells is an exciting and rapidly evolving field. Exploiting knowledge of basic T cell biology and immune cell receptor function has fostered innovative approaches to modify immune cell function. Highly translatable clinical technologies have been developed to redirect T cell specificity by introducing designed receptors. The ability to engineer T cells to manifest desired phenotypes and functions is now a thrilling reality. In this review, we focus on outlining different varieties of genetically engineered T cells, their respective advantages and disadvantages as tools for immunotherapy, and their promise and drawbacks in the clinic. PMID:27138532

  3. 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

  4. [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

  5. 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

  6. 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...

  7. 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...

  8. 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,…

  9. Natural Genetic Transformation: a Novel Tool for Efficient Genetic Engineering of the Dairy Bacterium Streptococcus thermophilus

    PubMed Central

    Blomqvist, Trinelise; Steinmoen, Hilde; Håvarstein, Leiv Sigve

    2006-01-01

    Streptococcus thermophilus is widely used for the manufacture of yoghurt and Swiss or Italian-type cheeses. These products have a market value of approximately $40 billion per year, making S. thermophilus a species that has major economic importance. Even though the fermentation properties of this bacterium have been gradually improved by classical methods, there is great potential for further improvement through genetic engineering. Due to the recent publication of three complete genome sequences, it is now possible to use a rational approach for designing S. thermophilus starter strains with improved properties. Progress in this field, however, is hampered by a lack of genetic tools. Therefore, we developed a system, based on natural transformation, which makes genetic manipulations in S. thermophilus easy, rapid, and highly efficient. The efficiency of this novel tool should make it possible to construct food-grade mutants of S. thermophilus, opening up exciting new possibilities that should benefit consumers as well as the dairy industry. PMID:17021227

  10. Animal medical genetics: a perspective on the epidemiology and control of inherited disorders.

    PubMed

    Jolly, R D; Dittmer, K E; Blair, H T

    2016-05-01

    This perspective considers genetic disorders of domestic animal populations, in particular their epidemiology and control. Inherited disorders of animals share the same basic molecular biology as those of human beings, but they differ in their epidemiology due largely to the breed structure of the various species, human control of breeding and a greater influence of the founder effect, particularly due to extensive use of a limited number of sires, and inbreeding. Control of genetic disorders in animals is also more practical through extensive screening for disease, or heterozygous animals within defined breed populations, followed by exclusion of affected or carrier animals from breeding. This is assisted by the fact that, within a breed, many inherited monogenic disorders are associated with a single mutation. However some of the more important disorders may be inherited in a non-Mendelian manner, being influenced by multiple genes as well as environmental factors. These aspects are discussed and contrasted with similar aspects in human medical genetics. PMID:26667890

  11. 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

  12. 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

  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

    Świątkiewicz, S; Świątkiewicz, M; Arczewska-Włosek, A; Józefiak, 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. [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

  16. Compromising genetic diversity in the wild: unmonitored large-scale release of plants and animals.

    PubMed

    Laikre, Linda; Schwartz, Michael K; Waples, Robin S; Ryman, Nils

    2010-09-01

    Large-scale exploitation of wild animals and plants through fishing, hunting and logging often depends on augmentation through releases of translocated or captively raised individuals. Such releases are performed worldwide in vast numbers. Augmentation can be demographically and economically beneficial but can also cause four types of adverse genetic change to wild populations: (1) loss of genetic variation, (2) loss of adaptations, (3) change of population composition, and (4) change of population structure. While adverse genetic impacts are recognized and documented in fisheries, little effort is devoted to actually monitoring them. In forestry and wildlife management, genetic risks associated with releases are largely neglected. We outline key features of programs to effectively monitor consequences of such releases on natural populations. PMID:20688414

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. 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)

  1. 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

  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. 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

  5. Animal Genetic Resource Trade Flows: The Utilization of Newly Imported Breeds and the Gene Flow of Imported Animals in the United States of America

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Animal germplasm exchange has recently received attention as a product of the FAO’s State of the World’s Animal Genetic Resources effort. Some have advocated a need to explore policies and regulations on the exchange of germplasm. However, there has been little comprehensive assessment of either th...

  6. 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

  7. The use of randomly bred and genetically defined animals in biomedical research.

    PubMed

    Gill, T J

    1980-12-01

    The rational selection of animals for experimental purposes is a very important part of the experimental design. The information obtained is neither as accurate and precise as it could be nor is it generally applicable to the body of knowledge in its field unless it utilizes the proper animal model. There are four major types of animals available for use in biomedical research, and each has its specific applicability. First, randomly bred animals can be derived either from colonies or from wild populations. They are particularly useful for first-level chemical screening, as a source of mutants, and as the starting material for developing inbred lines. Randomly bred animals from wild populations are also useful for studying the dynamics of genes in natural populations. Second, specifically structured outbred populations provide a stabilized gene pool that is useful for first- and second-level screening procedures. Third, inbred strains and F1 hybrids are useful for studying individual traits in a population, for answering specific experimental questions, for comparing results over a long period of time, and for detailed genetic analyses. Fourth, congenic strains are useful for studying the effects of specific genes and their alleles against a common inbred background. Detailed knowledge of the properties of these different types of animals and of the cost-effectiveness of their use provides an important basis for the appropriate choice of animal models for biomedical research. PMID:6779636

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

    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

  9. 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 α3β4 and α4β2 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 3-Dimensional Imaging Modalities for Phenotyping Genetically Engineered Mice

    PubMed Central

    Powell, K. A.; Wilson, D.

    2013-01-01

    A variety of 3-dimensional (3D) digital imaging modalities are available for whole-body assessment of genetically engineered mice: magnetic resonance microscopy (MRM), X-ray microcomputed tomography (microCT), optical projection tomography (OPT), episcopic and cryoimaging, and ultrasound biomicroscopy (UBM). Embryo and adult mouse phenotyping can be accomplished at microscopy or near microscopy spatial resolutions using these modalities. MRM and microCT are particularly well-suited for evaluating structural information at the organ level, whereas episcopic and OPT imaging provide structural and functional information from molecular fluorescence imaging at the cellular level. UBM can be used to monitor embryonic development longitudinally in utero. Specimens are not significantly altered during preparation, and structures can be viewed in their native orientations. Technologies for rapid automated data acquisition and high-throughput phenotyping have been developed and continually improve as this exciting field evolves. PMID:22146851

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. Predicting drug responsiveness in human cancers using genetically engineered mice

    PubMed Central

    Usary, Jerry; Zhao, Wei; Darr, David; Roberts, Patrick J.; Liu, Mei; Balletta, Lorraine; Karginova, Olga; Jordan, Jamie; Combest, Austin; Bridges, Arlene; Prat, Aleix; Cheang, Maggie C. U.; Herschkowitz, Jason I.; Rosen, Jeffrey M.; Zamboni, William; Sharpless, Norman E.; Perou, Charles M.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose To use genetically engineered mouse models (GEMMs) and orthotopic syngeneic murine transplants (OSTs) to develop gene-expression based predictors of response to anti-cancer drugs in human tumors. These mouse models offer advantages including precise genetics and an intact microenvironment/immune system. Experimental Design We examined the efficacy of four chemotherapeutic or targeted anti-cancer drugs, alone and in combination, using mouse models representing three distinct breast cancer subtypes: Basal-like (C3(1)-T-antigen GEMM), Luminal B (MMTV-Neu GEMM), and Claudin-low (T11/TP53−/− OST). We expression-profiled tumors to develop signatures that corresponded to treatment and response, then tested their predictive potential using human patient data. Results Although a single agent exhibited exceptional efficacy (i.e. lapatinib in the Neu-driven model), generally single-agent activity was modest, while some combination therapies were more active and life-prolonging. Through analysis of RNA expression in this large set of chemotherapy-treated murine tumors, we identified a pair of gene expression signatures that predicted pathological complete response to neoadjuvant anthracycline/taxane therapy in human patients with breast cancer. Conclusions These results show that murine-derived gene signatures can predict response even after accounting for common clinical variables and other predictive genomic signatures, suggesting that mice can be used to identify new biomarkers for human cancer patients. PMID:23780888

  15. 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.…

  16. 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.

  17. Detecting Instability in Animal Social Networks: Genetic Fragmentation Is Associated with Social Instability in Rhesus Macaques

    PubMed Central

    Beisner, Brianne A.; Jackson, Megan E.; Cameron, Ashley N.; McCowan, Brenda

    2011-01-01

    The persistence of biological systems requires evolved mechanisms which promote stability. Cohesive primate social groups are one example of stable biological systems, which persist in spite of regular conflict. We suggest that genetic relatedness and its associated kinship structure are a potential source of stability in primate social groups as kinship structure is an important organizing principle in many animal societies. We investigated the effect of average genetic relatedness per matrilineal family on the stability of matrilineal grooming and agonistic interactions in 48 matrilines from seven captive groups of rhesus macaques. Matrilines with low average genetic relatedness show increased family-level instability such as: more sub-grouping in their matrilineal groom network, more frequent fighting with kin, and higher rates of wounding. Family-level instability in multiple matrilines within a group is further associated with group-level instability such as increased wounding. Stability appears to arise from the presence of clear matrilineal structure in the rhesus macaque group hierarchy, which is derived from cohesion among kin in their affiliative and agonistic interactions with each other. We conclude that genetic relatedness and kinship structure are an important source of group stability in animal societies, particularly when dominance and/or affilative interactions are typically governed by kinship. PMID:21298105

  18. 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

  19. Increased production of nutriments by genetically engineered crops.

    PubMed

    Sévenier, Robert; van der Meer, Ingrid M; Bino, Raoul; Koops, Andries J

    2002-06-01

    Plants are the basis of human nutrition and have been selected and improved to assure this purpose. Nowadays, new technologies such as genetic engineering and genomics approaches allow further improvement of plants. We describe here three examples for which these techniques have been employed. We introduced the first enzyme involved in fructan synthesis, the sucrose sucrose fructosyltransferase (isolated from Jerusalem artichoke), into sugar beet. The transgenic sugar beet showed a dramatic change in the nature of the accumulated sugar, 90% of the sucrose being converted into fructan. The use of transgenic sugar beet for the production and isolation of fructans will result in a more efficient plant production system of fructans and should promote their use in human food. The second example shows how the over-expression of the key enzyme of flavonoid biosynthesis could increase anti-oxidant levels in tomato. Introduction of a highly expressed chalcone isomerase led to a seventyfold increase of the amount of quercetin glucoside, which is a strong anti-oxidant in tomato. We were also able to modify the essential amino acid content of potato in order to increase its nutritional value. The introduction of a feedback insensitive bacterial gene involved in biosynthesis of aspartate family amino acids led to a sixfold increase of the lysine content. Because the use of a bacterial gene could appear to be controversial, we also introduced a mutated form of the plant key enzyme of lysine biosynthesis (dihydrodipicolinate synthase) in potato. This modification led to a 15 times increase of the lysine content of potato. This increase of the essential amino acid lysine influences the nutritional value of potato, which normally has low levels of several essential amino acids. These three examples show how the metabolism of primary constituents of the plant cell such as sugar or amino acids, but also of secondary metabolites such as flavonoids, can be modified by genetic engineering. Producing fructan, a soluble fiber, increasing the level of flavonoids, an antioxidant, in tomato or increasing the level of essential amino acids in potato are all clear examples of plant genetic modifications with possible positive effects on human nutrition. PMID:12071305

  20. tRNA Modification and Genetic Code Variations in Animal Mitochondria

    PubMed Central

    Watanabe, Kimitsuna; Yokobori, Shin-ichi

    2011-01-01

    In animal mitochondria, six codons have been known as nonuniversal genetic codes, which vary in the course of animal evolution. They are UGA (termination codon in the universal genetic code changes to Trp codon in all animal mitochondria), AUA (Ile to Met in most metazoan mitochondria), AAA (Lys to Asn in echinoderm and some platyhelminth mitochondria), AGA/AGG (Arg to Ser in most invertebrate, Arg to Gly in tunicate, and Arg to termination in vertebrate mitochondria), and UAA (termination to Tyr in a planaria and a nematode mitochondria, but conclusive evidence is lacking in this case). We have elucidated that the anticodons of tRNAs deciphering these nonuniversal codons (tRNATrp for UGA, tRNAMet for AUA, tRNAAsn for AAA, and tRNASer and tRNAGly for AGA/AGG) are all modified; tRNATrp has 5-carboxymethylaminomethyluridine or 5-taurinomethyluridine, tRNAMet has 5-formylcytidine or 5-taurinomethyluridine, tRNASer has 7-methylguanosine and tRNAGly has 5-taurinomethyluridine in their anticodon wobble position, and tRNAAsn has pseudouridine in the anticodon second position. This review aims to clarify the structural relationship between these nonuniversal codons and the corresponding tRNA anticodons including modified nucleosides and to speculate on the possible mechanisms for explaining the evolutional changes of these nonuniversal codons in the course of animal evolution. PMID:22007289

  1. 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

    ..., ``Introduction of Organisms and Products Altered or Produced Through Genetic Engineering Which Are Plant Pests or... produced through genetic engineering that are plant pests or that there is reason to believe are plant... 340. In a notice \\1\\ published in the Federal Register on November 19, 2008 (73 FR 69602-69604,...

  2. 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…

  3. 77 FR 41350 - Monsanto Co.; Determination of Nonregulated Status of Soybean Genetically Engineered To Produce...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-07-13

    ... Through Genetic Engineering Which Are Plant Pests or Which There Is Reason to Believe Are Plant Pests... environment) of organisms and products altered or produced through genetic engineering that are plant pests or...' regulations in 7 CFR part 340. In a notice \\1\\ published in the Federal Register on December 27, 2011 (76...

  4. 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

  5. [Animal welfare aspects of biotechnology].

    PubMed

    Idel, A

    1990-04-01

    It's difficult to value the effects on animals caused by genetic engineering. Nowadays an enormous increase on animal tests is taken place. The detrimental alterations of small number of living born gene altered animals are in literature explained by deficiencies in method and the increased growth is described with deficient mechanisms on regulation. Not only the intention to increase productivity by genetic engineering but also the method to improve by fragments (genes) not facing the animals totality is against prevention of cruelty to animals. PMID:2351056

  6. New insights into the ontogeny of breathing from genetically engineered mice.

    PubMed

    Katz, D M; Balkowiec, A

    1997-11-01

    Development of breathing behavior depends on the coordinated maturation of central and peripheral neural pathways, respiratory muscles, airways, and lung tissues. Each of these components contains cellular elements in which derangements of gene expression may perturb development of normal respiratory function. Application in recent years of genetic engineering techniques has led to detailed analyses of gene structure and function. In particular, targeted gene deletions provide the opportunity to relate gene function to physiologic mechanisms in intact animals. This review summarizes recent studies in mice designed to alter, by targeted disruption of specific genes, development of individual components of the respiratory control system. We also discuss an example of the human therapeutic potential of transgenic methods. PMID:9391764

  7. Genetically modified animal models as tools for studying bone and mineral metabolism.

    PubMed

    Davey, Rachel A; MacLean, Helen E; McManus, Julie F; Findlay, David M; Zajac, Jeffrey D

    2004-06-01

    Genetic modification of mice is a powerful tool for the study of bone development and metabolism. This review discusses the advantages and disadvantages of various approaches used in bone-related research and the contributions these studies have made to bone biology. Genetic modification of mice is a powerful tool for the study of bone development and metabolism. This review discusses the advantages and disadvantages of various approaches used in bone-related research and the contributions these studies have made to bone biology. The approaches to genetic modification included in this review are (1) overexpression of genes, (2) global gene knockouts, (3) tissue-specific gene deletion, and (4) gene knock-in models. This review also highlights issues that should be considered when using genetically modified animal models, including the rigorous control of genetic background, use of appropriate control lines, and confirmation of tissue specificity of gene expression where appropriate. This technology provides a unique and powerful way to probe the function of genes and is already revolutionizing our approach to understanding the physiology of bone development and metabolism. PMID:15125787

  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. 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

  10. 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

  11. Genetic characterization of Toxoplasma gondii from domestic animals in central China.

    PubMed

    Qian, W F; Yan, W C; Wang, T Q; Shao, X D; Zhai, K; Han, L F; Lv, C C

    2015-09-01

    Toxoplasma gondii is an obligate intracellular parasite that has a remarkable ability to infect almost all warm-blooded animals, including humans. This study was aimed to determine the genetic characteristics of T. gondii isolates from domestic animals in Henan Province, central China. A total of 363 DNA samples, including 208 from hilar lymph nodes of pigs, 36 from blood samples of cats, 12 from tissues of aborted bovine fetuses and 107 from blood samples of dams with history of abortion in Henan Province, were examined for the presence of T. gondii by nested PCR based on B1 gene. The positive DNA samples were further genotyped by PCR-RFLP at 11 markers, including SAG1, (3'+ 5') SAG2, alt.SAG2, SAG3, BTUB, GRA6, c22-8, c29-2, L358, PK1, and Apico. DNA samples from 9 pigs, 5 cats, and 4 dairy cows were T. gondii B1 gene positive. Nine samples were successfully genotyped at all genetic loci, of which 5 samples from pigs, and 2 from cats were identified as ToxoDB genotype #9, and 2 samples from cows belonged to ToxoDB genotype #225. To our knowledge, the present study is the second report of genetic typing of T. gondii isolates from cattle in China, and the first report of T. gondii ToxoDB#225 from cattle. PMID:26695215

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. 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...

  15. Genetically Engineered Transvestites Reveal Novel Mating Genes in Budding Yeast

    PubMed Central

    Huberman, Lori B.; Murray, Andrew W.

    2013-01-01

    Haploid budding yeast has two mating types, defined by the alleles of the MAT locus, MATa and MATα. Two haploid cells of opposite mating types mate by signaling to each other using reciprocal pheromones and receptors, polarizing and growing toward each other, and eventually fusing to form a single diploid cell. The pheromones and receptors are necessary and sufficient to define a mating type, but other mating-type-specific proteins make mating more efficient. We examined the role of these proteins by genetically engineering “transvestite” cells that swap the pheromone, pheromone receptor, and pheromone processing factors of one mating type for another. These cells mate with each other, but their mating is inefficient. By characterizing their mating defects and examining their transcriptomes, we found Afb1 (a-factor barrier), a novel MATα-specific protein that interferes with a-factor, the pheromone secreted by MATa cells. Strong pheromone secretion is essential for efficient mating, and the weak mating of transvestites can be improved by boosting their pheromone production. Synthetic biology can characterize the factors that control efficiency in biological processes. In yeast, selection for increased mating efficiency is likely to have continually boosted pheromone levels and the ability to discriminate between partners who make more and less pheromone. This discrimination comes at a cost: weak mating in situations where all potential partners make less pheromone. PMID:24121774

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. [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

  3. 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

  4. Convergence of Human Genetics and Animal Studies: Gene Therapy for X-Linked Retinoschisis.

    PubMed

    Bush, Ronald A; Wei, Lisa L; Sieving, Paul A

    2015-08-01

    Retinoschisis is an X-linked recessive genetic disease that leads to vision loss in males. X-linked retinoschisis (XLRS) typically affects young males; however, progressive vision loss continues throughout life. Although discovered in 1898 by Haas in two brothers, the underlying biology leading to blindness has become apparent only in the last 15 years with the advancement of human genetic analyses, generation of XLRS animal models, and the development of ocular monitoring methods such as the electroretinogram and optical coherence tomography. It is now recognized that retinoschisis results from cyst formations within the retinal layers that interrupt normal visual neurosignaling and compromise structural integrity. Mutations in the human retinoschisin gene have been correlated with disease severity of the human XLRS phenotype. Introduction of a normal human retinoschisin cDNA into retinoschisin knockout mice restores retinal structure and improves neural function, providing proof-of-concept that gene replacement therapy is a plausible treatment for XLRS. PMID:26101206

  5. 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

  6. Genetic Variability of MicroRNA Genes in 15 Animal Species.

    PubMed

    Zorc, Minja; Obsteter, Jana; Dovc, Peter; Kunej, Tanja

    2015-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNA) are a class of non-coding RNAs important in posttranscriptional regulation of target genes. Previous studies have proven that genetic variability of miRNA genes (miR-SNP) has an impact on phenotypic variation and disease susceptibility in human, mice and some livestock species. MicroRNA gene polymorphisms could therefore represent biomarkers for phenotypic traits also in other animal species. We upgraded our previously developed tool miRNA SNiPer to the version 4.0 which enables the search of miRNA genetic variability in 15 animal genomes: http://www.integratomics-time.com/miRNA-SNiPer. Genome-wide in silico screening (GWISS) of 15 genomes revealed that based on the current database releases, miRNA genes are most polymorphic in cattle, followed by human, fruitfly, mouse, chicken, pig, horse, and sheep. The difference in the number of miRNA gene polymorphisms between species is most probably not due to a biological reason and lack of genetic variability in some species, but to different stage of sequencing projects and differences in development of genomic resource databases in different species. Genome screening revealed several interesting genomic hotspots. For instance, several multiple nucleotide polymorphisms (MNPs) are present within mature seed region in cattle. Among miR-SNPs 46 are present on commercial whole-genome SNP chips: 16 in cattle, 26 in chicken, two in sheep and two in pig. The update of the miRNA SNiPer tool and the generated catalogs will serve researchers as a starting point in designing projects dealing with the effects of genetic variability of miRNA genes. PMID:25874014

  7. Genetic Variability of MicroRNA Genes in 15 Animal Species

    PubMed Central

    Zorc, Minja; Obsteter, Jana; Dovc, Peter; Kunej, Tanja

    2015-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNA) are a class of non-coding RNAs important in posttranscriptional regulation of target genes. Previous studies have proven that genetic variability of miRNA genes (miR-SNP) has an impact on phenotypic variation and disease susceptibility in human, mice and some livestock species. MicroRNA gene polymorphisms could therefore represent biomarkers for phenotypic traits also in other animal species. We upgraded our previously developed tool miRNA SNiPer to the version 4.0 which enables the search of miRNA genetic variability in 15 animal genomes: http://www.integratomics-time.com/miRNA-SNiPer. Genome-wide in silico screening (GWISS) of 15 genomes revealed that based on the current database releases, miRNA genes are most polymorphic in cattle, followed by human, fruitfly, mouse, chicken, pig, horse, and sheep. The difference in the number of miRNA gene polymorphisms between species is most probably not due to a biological reason and lack of genetic variability in some species, but to different stage of sequencing projects and differences in development of genomic resource databases in different species. Genome screening revealed several interesting genomic hotspots. For instance, several multiple nucleotide polymorphisms (MNPs) are present within mature seed region in cattle. Among miR-SNPs 46 are present on commercial whole-genome SNP chips: 16 in cattle, 26 in chicken, two in sheep and two in pig. The update of the miRNA SNiPer tool and the generated catalogs will serve researchers as a starting point in designing projects dealing with the effects of genetic variability of miRNA genes. PMID:25874014

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

    PubMed

    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. PMID:20481749

  9. 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.

  10. 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, Cécile; Dormann, Nataliya; Pearson, Cindy; Savoie, Annie; Bourbonnière, 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

  11. 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).

  12. Genetically-engineered microorganisms: I. Identification, classification, and strain history.

    PubMed

    Strauss, H; Hattis, D; Page, G; Harrison, K; Vogel, S; Caldart, C

    1986-03-01

    We have argued that accurate identification of the microorganism will form a cornerstone of the assessment of potential hazard. Appropriate methodology for identification exists, and is continually under development and refinement. Organizations such as the American Type Culture Collection will perform certified identifications for relatively low cost. Thus there appears to be little reason that an organism should not be identified insofar as current microbiology allows prior to submission for PMN review. We suggest that a complete microbiological characterization be considered an essential element of an acceptable PMN. To accomplish this, however, current institutional arrangements for the protection of trade secret information needed in the process of identification may need to be improved. An accurate identification of the strain will often provide access to important information with which to evaluate its ecology, pathogenicity, biochemistry, and genetics. Specialized texts, the scientific literature, and professional consultation are ready sources of such information. However, a major effort should be made to establish a data base that can specifically address the needs of biohazard evaluation. This could be done, in part, by collecting information about the construction, and about the behavior in the environment of genetically-engineered microorganisms that are now under development and will soon be tested or used. Identification information may also eventually be useful for the formulation of hypotheses about possible modes of harm or about relative safety, based on phylogenetic relationships. This is a very difficult undertaking at present, however. Microbial taxonomy is currently in a process of radical reevaluation as new macromolecular sequence information reveals previously unsuspected phylogenetic relationships, and disturbs categorizations based on older types of traits such as morphology, etc. This means that both inferences about relative safety and about possible modes of harm from taxonomic relationships must be highly tentative based on current information. Regulatory authorities may wish to consider requesting confirmatory DNA hybridization data or other macromolecular sequence comparisons in cases where strong arguments related to safety must be made from taxonomic information in relatively poorly studied groups of organisms. Detailed strain histories would provide valuable information for safety evaluations.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 400 WORDS) PMID:3517974

  13. Genetically-engineered mouse models for pancreatic cancer: Advances and current limitations

    PubMed Central

    Ijichi, Hideaki

    2011-01-01

    Recently, there has been significant progress in the development of genetically-engineered mouse (GEM) models. By introducing genetic alterations and/or signaling alterations of human pancreatic cancer into the mouse pancreas, animal models can recapitulate human disease. Pancreas epithelium-specific endogenous Kras activation develops murine pancreatic intraepithelial neoplasia (mPanIN). Additional inactivation of p16, p53, or transforming growth factor-β signaling, in the context of Kras activation, dramatically accelerates mPanIN progression to invasive pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) with abundant stromal expansion and marked fibrosis (desmoplasia). The autochthonous cancer models retain tumor progression processes from pre-cancer to cancer as well as the intact tumor microenvironment, which is superior to xenograft models, although there are some limitations and differences from human PDAC. By fully studying GEM models, we can understand the mechanisms of PDAC formation and progression more precisely, which will lead us to a breakthrough in novel diagnostic and therapeutic methods as well as identification of the origin of PDAC. PMID:21611096

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

    PubMed Central

    Hauer, Julia; Borkhardt, Arndt; Sánchez-García, Isidro; Cobaleda, César

    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

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. Genetically Engineering Bacillus subtilis with a Heat-Resistant Arsenite Methyltransferase for Bioremediation of Arsenic-Contaminated Organic Waste

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Ke; Chen, Chuan; Shen, Qirong; Rosen, Barry P.

    2015-01-01

    Organic manures may contain high levels of arsenic (As) due to the use of As-containing growth-promoting substances in animal feed. To develop a bioremediation strategy to remove As from organic waste, Bacillus subtilis 168, a bacterial strain which can grow at high temperature but is unable to methylate and volatilize As, was genetically engineered to express the arsenite S-adenosylmethionine methyltransferase gene (CmarsM) from the thermophilic alga Cyanidioschyzon merolae. The genetically engineered B. subtilis 168 converted most of the inorganic As in the medium into dimethylarsenate and trimethylarsine oxide within 48 h and volatized substantial amounts of dimethylarsine and trimethylarsine. The rate of As methylation and volatilization increased with temperature from 37 to 50°C. When inoculated into an As-contaminated organic manure composted at 50°C, the modified strain significantly enhanced As volatilization. This study provides a proof of concept of using genetically engineered microorganisms for bioremediation of As-contaminated organic waste during composting. PMID:26187966

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. 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...

  1. 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...

  2. 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...

  3. 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...

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. 78 FR 13286 - Sharing Certain Business Information Regarding the Introduction of Genetically Engineered...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-02-27

    ... produced through genetic engineering that are plant pests or that there is reason to believe are plant pests under 7 CFR part 340, ``Introduction of Organisms and Products Altered or Produced Through Genetic... officials. The APHIS FOIA Office oversees any information release requested under FOIA. \\1\\ See 50 FR...

  7. 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…

  8. 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...

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. 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…

  12. 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

  13. 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…

  14. Successful creation of tissue-engineered autologous auricular cartilage in an immunocompetent large animal model.

    PubMed

    Bichara, David A; Pomerantseva, Irina; Zhao, Xing; Zhou, Libin; Kulig, Katherine M; Tseng, Alan; Kimura, Anya M; Johnson, Matthew A; Vacanti, Joseph P; Randolph, Mark A; Sundback, Cathryn A

    2014-01-01

    Tissue-engineered cartilage has historically been an attractive alternative treatment option for auricular reconstruction. However, the ability to reliably generate autologous auricular neocartilage in an immunocompetent preclinical model should first be established. The objectives of this study were to demonstrate engineered autologous auricular cartilage in the immunologically aggressive subcutaneous environment of an immunocompetent animal model, and to determine the impact of in vitro culture duration of chondrocyte-seeded constructs on the quality of neocartilage maturation in vivo. Auricular cartilage was harvested from eight adult sheep; chondrocytes were isolated, expanded in vitro, and seeded onto fibrous collagen scaffolds. Constructs were cultured in vitro for 2, 6, and 12 weeks, and then implanted autologously in sheep and in control nude mice for 6 and 12 weeks. Explanted tissue was stained with hematoxylin and eosin, safranin O, toluidine blue, collagen type II, and elastin. DNA and glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) were quantified. The quality of cartilage engineered in sheep decreased with prolonged in vitro culture time. Superior cartilage formation was demonstrated after 2 weeks of in vitro culture; the neocartilage quality improved with increased implantation time. In nude mice, neocartilage resembled native sheep auricular cartilage regardless of the in vitro culture length, with the exception of elastin expression. The DNA quantification was similar in all engineered and native cartilage (p>0.1). All cartilage engineered in sheep had significantly less GAG than native cartilage (p<0.02); significantly more GAG was observed with increased implantation time (p<0.02). In mice, the GAG content was similar to that of native cartilage and became significantly higher with increased in vitro or in vivo durations (p<0.02). Autologous auricular cartilage was successfully engineered in the subcutaneous environment of an ovine model using expanded chondrocytes seeded on a fibrous collagen scaffold after a 2-week in vitro culture period. PMID:23980800

  15. 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

  16. 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.

  17. 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.…

  18. Monitoring for genetically engineered pseudomonas species in monterey county

    SciTech Connect

    Supkoff, D.; Opgenorth, D.; Lai, C.; Segawa, R.; Koehler, D.

    1987-01-01

    A field monitoring study was conducted to determine if genetically altered Pseudomonas fluorescens or P. syringae had been applied to sites in Monterey County. A series of diagnostic tests for antibiotic resistance, fluorescence ability, oxidase and arginine dihydrolase activities, hypersensitivity reaction and ice nucleation ability were conducted to screen bacteria isolated from field and control samples. No bacteria were detected from field samples which matched the expected test profiles of genetically altered bacterial products. In contrast, bacteria were consistently isolated from positive control samples with the expected characteristics of genetically altered bacteria.

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. Review of aerospace engineering cost modelling: The genetic causal approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Curran, R.; Raghunathan, S.; Price, M.

    2004-11-01

    The primary intention of this paper is to review the current state of the art in engineering cost modelling as applied to aerospace. This is a topic of current interest and in addressing the literature, the presented work also sets out some of the recognised definitions of cost that relate to the engineering domain. The paper does not attempt to address the higher-level financial sector but rather focuses on the costing issues directly relevant to the engineering process, primarily those of design and manufacture. This is of more contemporary interest as there is now a shift towards the analysis of the influence of cost, as defined in more engineering related terms; in an attempt to link into integrated product and process development (IPPD) within a concurrent engineering environment. Consequently, the cost definitions are reviewed in the context of the nature of cost as applicable to the engineering process stages: from bidding through to design, to manufacture, to procurement and ultimately, to operation. The linkage and integration of design and manufacture is addressed in some detail. This leads naturally to the concept of engineers influencing and controlling cost within their own domain rather than trusting this to financers who have little control over the cause of cost. In terms of influence, the engineer creates the potential for cost and in a concurrent environment this requires models that integrate cost into the decision making process.

  2. Exploring Dynamics of Molybdate in Living Animal Cells by a Genetically Encoded FRET Nanosensor

    PubMed Central

    Nakanishi, Yoichi; Iida, Syuntaro; Ueoka-Nakanishi, Hanayo; Niimi, Tomoaki; Tomioka, Rie; Maeshima, Masayoshi

    2013-01-01

    Molybdenum (Mo) is an essential trace element for almost all living organisms including animals. Mo is used as a catalytic center of molybdo-enzymes for oxidation/reduction reactions of carbon, nitrogen, and sulfur metabolism. Whilst living cells are known to import inorganic molybdate oxyanion from the surrounding environment, the in vivo dynamics of cytosolic molybdate remain poorly understood as no appropriate indicator is available for this trace anion. We here describe a genetically encoded Förester-resonance-energy-transfer (FRET)-based nanosensor composed of CFP, YFP and the bacterial molybdate-sensor protein ModE. The nanosensor MolyProbe containing an optimized peptide-linker responded to nanomolar-range molybdate selectively, and increased YFP:CFP fluorescence intensity ratio by up to 109%. By introduction of the nanosensor, we have been able to successfully demonstrate the real-time dynamics of molybdate in living animal cells. Furthermore, time course analyses of the dynamics suggest that novel oxalate-sensitive- and sulfate-resistant- transporter(s) uptake molybdate in a model culture cell. PMID:23472155

  3. 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

  4. 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)

  5. 20 Years of hypertension research using genetically modified animals: no clinically promising approaches in sight.

    PubMed

    Stingl, Lavinia; Völkel, 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

  6. 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

  7. 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)

  8. Characterization and genetic variability of feed-borne and clinical animal/human Aspergillus fumigatus strains using molecular markers.

    PubMed

    Pena, Gabriela A; Coelho, Irene; Reynoso, María M; Soleiro, Carla; Cavaglieri, Lilia R

    2015-09-01

    Aspergillus fumigatus, the major etiological agent of human and animal aspergillosis, is a toxigenic fungus largely regarded as a single species by macroscopic and microscopic features. However, molecular studies have demonstrated that several morphologically identified A. fumigatus strains might be genetically distinct. This work was aimed to apply PCR-restriction length fragment polymorphisms (PCR-RFLP) and random amplification of polymorphic DNA (RAPD) molecular markers to characterize a set of feed-borne and clinical A. fumigatus sensu lato strains isolated from Argentina and Brazil and to determine and compare their genetic variability. All A. fumigatus strains had the same band profile and those typical of A. fumigatus sensu stricto positive controls by PCR-RFLP. Moreover, all Argentinian and Brazilian strains typified by RAPD showed similar band patterns to each other and to A. fumigatus sensu stricto reference strains regardless of their isolation source (animal feeds or human/animal clinical cases) and geographic origin. Genetic similarity coefficients ranged from 0.61 to 1.00, but almost all isolates showed 78% of genetic similarly suggesting that genetic variability was found at intraspecific level. Finally, benA sequencing confirmed its identification as A. fumigatus sensu stricto species. These results suggest that A. fumigatus sensu stricto is a predominant species into Aspergillus section Fumigati found in animal environments as well as in human/animal clinical cases, while other species may be rarely isolated. The strains involved in human and animal aspergillosis could come from the environment where this fungus is frequently found. Rural workers and animals would be constantly exposed. PMID:26129892

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. Genomic landscapes of endogenous retroviruses unveil intricate genetics of conventional and genetically-engineered laboratory mouse strains.

    PubMed

    Lee, Kang-Hoon; Lim, Debora; Chiu, Sophia; Greenhalgh, David; Cho, Kiho

    2016-04-01

    Laboratory strains of mice, both conventional and genetically engineered, have been introduced as critical components of a broad range of studies investigating normal and disease biology. Currently, the genetic identity of laboratory mice is primarily confirmed by surveying polymorphisms in selected sets of "conventional" genes and/or microsatellites in the absence of a single completely sequenced mouse genome. First, we examined variations in the genomic landscapes of transposable repetitive elements, named the TREome, in conventional and genetically engineered mouse strains using murine leukemia virus-type endogenous retroviruses (MLV-ERVs) as a probe. A survey of the genomes from 56 conventional strains revealed strain-specific TREome landscapes, and certain families (e.g., C57BL) of strains were discernible with defined patterns. Interestingly, the TREome landscapes of C3H/HeJ (toll-like receptor-4 [TLR4] mutant) inbred mice were different from its control C3H/HeOuJ (TLR4 wild-type) strain. In addition, a CD14 knock-out strain had a distinct TREome landscape compared to its control/backcross C57BL/6J strain. Second, an examination of superantigen (SAg, a "TREome gene") coding sequences of mouse mammary tumor virus-type ERVs in the genomes of the 46 conventional strains revealed a high diversity, suggesting a potential role of SAgs in strain-specific immune phenotypes. The findings from this study indicate that unexplored and intricate genomic variations exist in laboratory mouse strains, both conventional and genetically engineered. The TREome-based high-resolution genetics surveillance system for laboratory mice would contribute to efficient study design with quality control and accurate data interpretation. This genetics system can be easily adapted to other species ranging from plants to humans. PMID:26779669

  12. 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...

  13. Genetic engineering of millets: current status and future prospects.

    PubMed

    Ceasar, S Antony; Ignacimuthu, S

    2009-06-01

    This review summarizes progress on the genetic transformation of millets and discusses the future prospects for the development of improved varieties. Only a limited number of studies have been carried out on genetic improvement of millets despite their nutritional importance in supplying minerals, calories and protein. Most genetic transformation studies of millets have been restricted to pearl millet and bahiagrass and most studies have been limited to the assessment of reporter and marker gene expression. Biolistic-mediated gene delivery has been frequently used for the transformation of millets but Agrobacterium-mediated transformation is still lagging. Improved transformation of millets, allied to relevant gene targets which may offer, for example, improved nutritional quality, resistance to abiotic and biotic stresses, and resistance to fungal infection will play important roles in millet improvement. PMID:19205896

  14. 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

  15. 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 ...

  16. Genetically engineered bacteria: an emerging tool for environmental remediation and future research perspectives.

    PubMed

    Singh, Jay Shankar; Abhilash, P C; Singh, H B; Singh, Rana P; Singh, D P

    2011-07-01

    This minireview explores the environmental bioremediation mediated by genetically engineered (GE) bacteria and it also highlights the limitations and challenges associated with the release of engineered bacteria in field conditions. Application of GE bacteria based remediation of various heavy metal pollutants is in the forefront due to eco-friendly and lesser health hazards compared to physico-chemical based strategies, which are less eco-friendly and hazardous to human health. A combination of microbiological and ecological knowledge, biochemical mechanisms and field engineering designs would be an essential element for successful in situ bioremediation of heavy metal contaminated sites using engineered bacteria. Critical research questions pertaining to the development and implementation of GE bacteria for enhanced bioremediation have been identified and poised for possible future research. Genetic engineering of indigenous microflora, well adapted to local environmental conditions, may offer more efficient bioremediation of contaminated sites and making the bioremediation more viable and eco-friendly technology. However, many challenges are to be addressed concerning the release of genetically engineered bacteria in field conditions. There are possible risks associated with the use of GE bacteria in field condition, with particular emphasis on ways in which molecular genetics could contribute to the risk mitigation. Both environmental as well as public health concerns need to be addressed by the molecular biologists. Although bioremediation of heavy metals by using the genetically engineered bacteria has been extensively reviewed in the past also, but the bio-safety assessment and factors of genetic pollution have been never the less ignored. PMID:21402131

  17. 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.

  18. 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 ...

  19. 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...

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. Plant artificial chromosome technology and its potential application in genetic engineering.

    PubMed

    Yu, Weichang; Yau, Yuan-Yeu; Birchler, James A

    2016-05-01

    Genetic engineering with just a few genes has changed agriculture in the last 20 years. The most frequently used transgenes are the herbicide resistance genes for efficient weed control and the Bt toxin genes for insect resistance. The adoption of the first-generation genetically engineered crops has been very successful in improving farming practices, reducing the application of pesticides that are harmful to both human health and the environment, and producing more profit for farmers. However, there is more potential for genetic engineering to be realized by technical advances. The recent development of plant artificial chromosome technology provides a super vector platform, which allows the management of a large number of genes for the next generation of genetic engineering. With the development of other tools such as gene assembly, genome editing, gene targeting and chromosome delivery systems, it should become possible to engineer crops with multiple genes to produce more agricultural products with less input of natural resources to meet future demands. PMID:26369910

  7. 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

  8. Genetically engineered live attenuated influenza A virus vaccine candidates.

    PubMed Central

    Parkin, N T; Chiu, P; Coelingh, K

    1997-01-01

    We have generated new influenza A virus live attenuated vaccine candidates by site-directed mutagenesis and reverse genetics. By mutating specific amino acids in the PB2 polymerase subunit, two temperature-sensitive (ts) attenuated viruses were obtained. Both candidates have 38 degrees C shutoff temperatures in MDCK cells, are attenuated in the respiratory tracts of mice and ferrets, and have very low reactogenicity in ferrets. Infection of mice or ferrets with either mutant conferred significant protection from challenge with the homologous wild-type virus. Three tests for genetic stability were used to assess the propensity for reversion to virulence: 14 days of replication in nude mice, growth at 37 degrees C in tissue culture, and serial passage in ferrets. One candidate, which contains mutations intended to reduce the ability of PB2 to bind to cap structures, was stable in all three assays, whereas the second candidate, which contains mutations found only in other ts strains of influenza virus, lost its ts phenotype in the last two assays. This approach has therefore enabled the creation of live attenuated influenza A virus vaccine candidates suitable for human testing. PMID:9060631

  9. How genetically engineered systems are helping to define, and in some cases redefine, the neurobiological basis of sleep and wake

    PubMed Central

    Fuller, Patrick M; Yamanaka, Akihiro; Lazarus, Michael

    2015-01-01

    The advent of genetically engineered systems, including transgenic animals and recombinant viral vectors, has facilitated a more detailed understanding of the molecular and cellular substrates regulating brain function. In this review we highlight some of the most recent molecular biology and genetic technologies in the experimental “systems neurosciences,” many of which are rapidly becoming a methodological standard, and focus in particular on those tools and techniques that permit the reversible and cell-type specific manipulation of neurons in behaving animals. These newer techniques encompass a wide range of approaches including conditional deletion of genes based on Cre/loxP technology, gene silencing using RNA interference, cell-type specific mapping or ablation and reversible manipulation (silencing and activation) of neurons in vivo. Combining these approaches with viral vector delivery systems, in particular adeno-associated viruses (AAV), has extended, in some instances greatly, the utility of these tools. For example, the spatially- and/or temporally-restricted transduction of specific neuronal cell populations is now routinely achieved using the combination of Cre-driver mice and stereotaxic-based delivery of AAV expressing Cre-dependent cassettes. We predict that the experimental application of these tools, including creative combinatorial approaches and the development of even newer reagents, will prove necessary for a complete understanding of the neuronal circuits subserving most neurobiological functions, including the regulation of sleep and wake. PMID:27227054

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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)

  16. Genetically-engineered pig-to-baboon liver xenotransplantation: histopathology of xenografts and native organs.

    PubMed

    Ekser, Burcin; Klein, Edwin; He, Jing; Stolz, Donna B; Echeverri, Gabriel J; Long, Cassandra; Lin, Chih Che; Ezzelarab, Mohamed; Hara, Hidetaka; Veroux, Massimiliano; Ayares, David; Cooper, David K C; Gridelli, Bruno

    2012-01-01

    Orthotopic liver transplantation was carried out in baboons using wild-type (WT, n = 1) or genetically-engineered pigs (α1,3-galactosyltransferase gene-knockout, GTKO), n = 1; GTKO pigs transgenic for human CD46, n = 7) and a clinically-acceptable immunosuppressive regimen. Biopsies were obtained from the WT pig liver pre-Tx and at 30 min, 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 h post-transplantation. Biopsies of genetically-engineered livers were obtained pre-Tx, 2 h after reperfusion and at necropsy (4-7 days after transplantation). Tissues were examined by light, confocal, and electron microscopy. All major native organs were also examined. The WT pig liver underwent hyperacute rejection. After genetically-engineered pig liver transplantation, hyperacute rejection did not occur. Survival was limited to 4-7 days due to repeated spontaneous bleeding in the liver and native organs (as a result of profound thrombocytopenia) which necessitated euthanasia. At 2 h, graft histology was largely normal. At necropsy, genetically-engineered pig livers showed hemorrhagic necrosis, platelet aggregation, platelet-fibrin thrombi, monocyte/macrophage margination mainly in liver sinusoids, and vascular endothelial cell hypertrophy, confirmed by confocal and electron microscopy. Immunohistochemistry showed minimal deposition of IgM, and almost absence of IgG, C3, C4d, C5b-9, and of a cellular infiltrate, suggesting that neither antibody- nor cell-mediated rejection played a major role. PMID:22247784

  17. '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 ...

  18. 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...

  19. 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)

  20. 76 FR 80869 - Monsanto Co.; Determination of Nonregulated Status of Corn Genetically Engineered for Drought...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-12-27

    ... Products Altered or Produced Through Genetic Engineering Which Are Plant Pests or Which There Is Reason to...\\ published in the Federal Register on May 11, 2011 (76 FR 27303-27304, Docket No. APHIS-2011-0023), APHIS..., 2011. On July 27, 2011, APHIS published in the Federal Register (76 FR 44891-44892, Docket No....

  1. 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…

  2. 78 FR 13302 - Syngenta Biotechnology, Inc.; Determination of Nonregulated Status of Corn Genetically Engineered...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-02-27

    ... Products Altered or Produced Through Genetic Engineering Which Are Plant Pests or Which There Is Reason to... Register on July 13, 2012 (77 FR 41366-41367, Docket No. APHIS-2012-0024), APHIS announced the availability... movement, or release into the environment) of organisms and products altered or produced through...

  3. 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

    ... Products Altered or Produced Through Genetic Engineering Which Are Plant Pests or Which There Is Reason to... notice\\1\\ published in the Federal Register on June 28, 2011 (76 FR 37770-37771, Docket No. APHIS-2011... movement, or release into the environment) of organisms and products altered or produced through...

  4. Genetically Engineered Alfalfa and Feral Alfalfa Plants: What Should Growers Know?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Alfalfa (Medicago sativa subsp. sativa L) is the world’s most important forage crop. The western United States is the most important production area for both alfalfa forage and alfalfa seed. Alfalfa was the first major perennial genetically-engineered (GE)crop and a GE trait for resistance to glypho...

  5. The Use of Simple Models in the Teaching of Genetic Engineering.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nicholl, Desmond S. T.

    1986-01-01

    Suggestions for instructional improvement are provided in two topic areas. Explains the use of models in helping students to visualize selected concepts in genetic engineering and recommends the use of tropical tuber crops for encouraging students to conduct practical investigations. (ML)

  6. 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...

  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. 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...

  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. 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...

  11. The genetics of rheumatoid arthritis and the need for animal models to find and understand the underlying genes

    PubMed Central

    Jirholt, Johan; Lindqvist, Anna-Karin B; Holmdahl, Rikard

    2001-01-01

    The causes of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) are largely unknown. However, RA is most probably a multifactorial disease with contributions from genetic and environmental factors. Searches for genes that influence RA have been conducted in both human and experimental model materials. Both types of study have confirmed the polygenic inheritance of the disease. It has become clear that the features of RA complicate the human genetic studies. Animal models are therefore valuable tools for identifying genes and determining their pathogenic role in the disease. This is probably the fastest route towards unravelling the pathogenesisis of RA and developing new therapies. PMID:11178115

  12. 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

  13. 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...

  14. 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

    ... part 340, ``Introduction of Organisms and Products Altered or Produced Through Genetic Engineering... and products altered or produced through genetic engineering that are plant pests or that there is...' regulations in 7 CFR part 340. In a notice \\1\\ published in the Federal Register on July 13, 2012 (77 FR...

  15. Phytodetoxification of hazardous organomercurials by genetically engineered plants.

    PubMed

    Bizily, S P; Rugh, C L; Meagher, R B

    2000-02-01

    Methylmercury is a highly toxic, organic derivative found in mercury-polluted wetlands and coastal sediments worldwide. Though commonly present at low concentrations in the substrate, methylmercury can biomagnify to concentrations that poison predatory animals and humans. In the interest of developing an in situ detoxification strategy, a model plant system was transformed with bacterial genes (merA for mercuric reductase and merB for organomercurial lyase) for an organic mercury detoxification pathway. Arabidopsis thaliana plants expressing both genes grow on 50-fold higher methylmercury concentrations than wild-type plants and up to 10-fold higher concentrations than plants that express merB alone. An in vivo assay demonstrated that both transgenes are required for plants to detoxify organic mercury by converting it to volatile and much less toxic elemental mercury. PMID:10657131

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. Genetic engineering of untransformable coagulase-negative staphylococcal pathogens.

    PubMed

    Winstel, Volker; Kühner, Petra; Rohde, Holger; Peschel, Andreas

    2016-05-01

    Coagulase-negative staphylococci (CoNS) are recognized as significant opportunistic pathogens. However, current knowledge of virulence mechanisms is very limited because a significant proportion of CoNS are refractory to available techniques for DNA transformation. We describe an efficient protocol for plasmid transfer using bacteriophage Φ187, which can transduce plasmid DNA to a wide range of CoNS from a unique, engineered Staphylococcus aureus strain. The use of a restriction-deficient, modification-proficient S. aureus PS187 mutant, which has a CoNS-type bacteriophage surface receptor, allows plasmid transfer to CoNS even when they are refractory to electroporation. Once the Φ187 titer reaches 10(9) plaque-forming units per milliliter, plasmid transfer can be accomplished within 1-2 d. Thus, our protocol is a major technical advance offering attractive opportunities for research on CoNS-mediated infections. PMID:27101516

  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. 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...

  1. 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

  2. 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 naïve understandings of genetics. Implications for instruction and future research are discussed.

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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 (ω3 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 ω3 LC-PUFA docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) from endogenous α-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 20:1ω9. 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

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

    PubMed

    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 (ω3 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 ω3 LC-PUFA docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) from endogenous α-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 20:1ω9. 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

  7. 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.

  8. SelenoDB 2.0: annotation of selenoprotein genes in animals and their genetic diversity in humans

    PubMed Central

    Romagné, Frédéric; Santesmasses, Didac; White, Louise; Sarangi, Gaurab K.; Mariotti, Marco; Hübler, Ron; Weihmann, Antje; Parra, Genís; Gladyshev, Vadim N.; Guigó, Roderic; Castellano, Sergi

    2014-01-01

    SelenoDB (http://www.selenodb.org) aims to provide high-quality annotations of selenoprotein genes, proteins and SECIS elements. Selenoproteins are proteins that contain the amino acid selenocysteine (Sec) and the first release of the database included annotations for eight species. Since the release of SelenoDB 1.0 many new animal genomes have been sequenced. The annotations of selenoproteins in new genomes usually contain many errors in major databases. For this reason, we have now fully annotated selenoprotein genes in 58 animal genomes. We provide manually curated annotations for human selenoproteins, whereas we use an automatic annotation pipeline to annotate selenoprotein genes in other animal genomes. In addition, we annotate the homologous genes containing cysteine (Cys) instead of Sec. Finally, we have surveyed genetic variation in the annotated genes in humans. We use exon capture and resequencing approaches to identify single-nucleotide polymorphisms in more than 50 human populations around the world. We thus present a detailed view of the genetic divergence of Sec- and Cys-containing genes in animals and their diversity in humans. The addition of these datasets into the second release of the database provides a valuable resource for addressing medical and evolutionary questions in selenium biology. PMID:24194593

  9. Environmental concerns associated with the design of genetic engineering facilities.

    PubMed

    Watt, J C; Wroniewicz, V S; Ioli, D F

    1988-01-01

    Recombinant DNA technology is being used to produce a wide spectrum of products, such as vaccines, interferon, insulin, and growth hormones. In the design of facilities employing this technology, critical consideration must be given to the protection of the environment, both in the prevention of releases of recombinant DNA organisms into the environment and in the treatment of wastes originating from the production facilities. The design requirements for containment of large-scale systems are complex and require detailed analysis to insure that the containment system can handle both the normal and emergency releases of recombinant DNA organisms. This must include the prevention of releases through either liquid discharges or air emissions. The "killing" method used in the process for either the cells (extracellular product) or the broth (intracellular product) is an important step and can have significant implications in downstream treatment of wastewaters. Since fermentation is the primary process used in the production of recombinant DNA products, wastewater characteristics from this area of the process are basically similar to those of other fermentation processes. They differ, however, because of the "killing" step in the process, which can introduce compounds not normally found in fermentation wastewaters. This can complicate the treatment process by requiring additional treatment operations. Characteristics of wastewaters from other areas of the process can be very diverse, and no general characterization can be made. Techniques for recovery and purification can vary from product to product or even from plant to plant, making characterization difficult. It is important, therefore, that each process be examined in detail so that waste characterization is meaningful and useful in the design of treatment facilities. Because of the complex nature of the processes involved in the production of recombinant DNA products, wastewater treatment can also become a very complex problem. Systems to treat these wastewaters can include many diverse unit operations, from pretreatment of selected streams to tertiary treatment of the combined streams to meet stringent effluent criteria. While biological treatment is almost always applicable, waste loads are very high, and multiple-stage systems could be required. Early and ongoing interface between the process development scientists and engineers and the environmental disciplines allows for the early recognition of potential environmental problems. With early recognition, many of these problems can be economically and efficiently addressed in the design of the facility.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 400 WORDS) PMID:3178641

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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 (80°C) 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 80°C 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 (˜ 54°C for 17H6 and PEG5K-c17H6 and ˜ 51°C 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 80°C 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 electron microscopy (cryo-TEM). DLS experiments showed that pH responsiveness is also operative for the conjugates clearly indicating that the aggregation state of the polypeptide and the conjugates is controlled by the charged state of the glutamic acid residues. Thus, it is likely that when the glutamic acid residues are functionalized with hydrophobic molecules, self-association of the alanine-rich domain can be triggered independent of pH. It was also shown that the aggregates could be detected at polypeptide/conjugate concentrations as low as 20 muM (˜ 0.3-0.5 mg/ml) at physiological and ambient temperatures. Cryo-TEM images indicated that 17H6 and PEG5K-c17H6 form elongated structures in contrast to the spherical morphology of PEG10K-c17H6 conjugate. These scattering and microscopy results showed that the size, the aggregation number, and the morphology of the aggregates could be tuned by the size and the nature of the hydrophilic tag. Thus, this tunable nature of the morphology of the aggregates along with their low critical aggregation concentration suggests that PEG-c17H6 conjugates can be used as a drug delivery vehicle where c17H6 serves as a drug attachment domain.

  16. 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.

  17. Genetic Engineering of Mesenchymal Stem Cells to Induce Their Migration and Survival

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

    Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are very attractive for regenerative medicine due to their relatively easy derivation and broad range of differentiation capabilities, either naturally or induced through cell engineering. However, efficient methods of delivery to diseased tissues and the long-term survival of grafted cells still need improvement. Here, we review genetic engineering approaches designed to enhance the migratory capacities of MSCs, as well as extend their survival after transplantation by the modulation of prosurvival approaches, including prevention of senescence and apoptosis. We highlight some of the latest examples that explore these pivotal points, which have great relevance in cell-based therapies.

  18. Tissue engineering for total meniscal substitution: animal study in sheep model--results at 12 months.

    PubMed

    Kon, Elizaveta; Filardo, Giuseppe; Tschon, Matilde; Fini, Milena; Giavaresi, Gianluca; Marchesini Reggiani, Leonardo; Chiari, Catharina; Nehrer, Stefan; Martin, Ivan; Salter, Donald M; Ambrosio, Luigi; Marcacci, Maurilio

    2012-08-01

    The aim of the study was to investigate the use of a hyaluronic acid/polycaprolactone material for meniscal tissue engineering and to evaluate the tissue regeneration after the augmentation of the implant with expanded autologous chondrocytes. Eighteen skeletally mature sheep were treated. The animals were divided into three groups: cell-free scaffold, scaffold seeded with autologous chondrocytes, and meniscectomy alone. The implant was sutured to the capsule and to the meniscal ligament. At a 12-month gross assessment, histology and histomorphometry were used to assess the meniscus implant, knee joint, and osteoarthritis development. All implants showed excellent capsular ingrowth at the periphery. The implant gross assessment showed significant differences between cell-seeded and cell-free groups (p=0.011). The histological analysis indicated a cellular colonization throughout the implanted constructs. Avascular cartilaginous tissue formation was significantly more frequent in the cell-seeded constructs. Joint gross assessment showed that sheep treated with scaffold implantation achieved a significant higher score than those underwent meniscectomy (p<0.0005), and the Osteoarthritis Research Society International score showed that osteoarthritic changes were significantly less in the cell-seeded group than in the meniscectomy group (p=0.047), even though results were not significantly superior to those of the cell-free scaffold. Seeding of the scaffold with autologous chondrocytes increases its tissue regeneration capacity, providing a better fibrocartilaginous tissue formation. The study suggests the potential of the novel hyaluronic acid/polycaprolactone scaffold for total meniscal substitution, although this approach has to be further improved before being applied into clinical practice. PMID:22500654

  19. 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...

  20. Nuclear and plastid genetic engineering of plants: comparison of opportunities and challenges.

    PubMed

    Meyers, Benjamin; Zaltsman, Adi; Lacroix, Benoît; Kozlovsky, Stanislav V; Krichevsky, Alexander

    2010-01-01

    Plant genetic engineering is one of the key technologies for crop improvement as well as an emerging approach for producing recombinant proteins in plants. Both plant nuclear and plastid genomes can be genetically modified, yet fundamental functional differences between the eukaryotic genome of the plant cell nucleus and the prokaryotic-like genome of the plastid will have an impact on key characteristics of the resulting transgenic organism. So, which genome, nuclear or plastid, to transform for the desired transgenic phenotype? In this review we compare the advantages and drawbacks of engineering plant nuclear and plastid genomes to generate transgenic plants with the traits of interest, and evaluate the pros and cons of their use for different biotechnology and basic research applications, ranging from generation of commercial crops with valuable new phenotypes to 'bioreactor' plants for large-scale production of recombinant proteins to research model plants expressing various reporter proteins. PMID:20685387

  1. 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 20 years. 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

  2. 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

  3. [Genetic engineering and assisted reproduction techniques in man: a framework for sociologic analysis].

    PubMed

    Sánchez 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

  4. [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

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. Use of Bioluminescence for Detection of Genetically Engineered Microorganisms Released into the Environment

    PubMed Central

    Shaw, Joe J.; Dane, Fenny; Geiger, Dorothy; Kloepper, Joseph 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. Our bioluminescence methods proved to be as sensitive as plating methods for detecting the genetically engineered microorganisms in environmental samples. Our results demonstrate that transgenic incorporation of the luxCDABE operon provides a non-labor-intensive, sensitive detection method for monitoring genetically engineered microorganisms in nature. Images PMID:1311542

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. Current status of genetic engineering in cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L): an assessment.

    PubMed

    Chakravarthy, Vajhala S K; Reddy, Tummala Papi; Reddy, Vudem Dashavantha; Rao, Khareedu Venkateswara

    2014-06-01

    Cotton is considered as the foremost commercially important fiber crop and is deemed as the backbone of the textile industry. The productivity of cotton crop, worldwide, is severely hampered by the occurrence of pests, weeds, pathogens apart from various environmental factors. Several beneficial agronomic traits, viz., early maturity, improved fiber quality, heat tolerance, etc. have been successfully incorporated into cotton varieties employing conventional hybridization and mutation breeding. Crop losses, due to biotic factors, are substantial and may be reduced through certain crop protection strategies. In recent years, pioneering success has been achieved through the adoption of modern biotechnological approaches. Genetically engineered cotton varieties, expressing Bacillus thuringiensis cry genes, proved to be highly successful in controlling the bollworm complex. Various other candidate genes responsible for resistance to insect pests and pathogens, tolerance to major abiotic stress factors such as temperature, drought and salinity, have been introduced into cotton via genetic engineering methods to enhance the agronomic performance of cotton cultivars. Furthermore, genes for improving the seed oil quality and fiber characteristics have been identified and introduced into cotton cultivars. This review provides a brief overview of the various advancements made in cotton through genetic engineering approaches. PMID:23190258

  11. Reverse engineering of metabolic pathways from observed data using genetic programming.

    PubMed

    Koza, J R; Mydlowec, W; Lanza, G; Yu, J; Keane, M A

    2001-01-01

    Recent work has demonstrated that genetic programming is capable of automatically creating complex networks (such as analog electrical circuits and controllers) whose behavior is modeled by linear and non-linear continuous-time differential equations and whose behavior matches prespecified output values. The concentrations of substances participating in networks of chemical reactions are also modeled by non-linear continuous-time differential equations. This paper demonstrates that it is possible to automatically create (reverse engineer) a network of chemical reactions from observed time-domain data. Genetic programming starts with observed time-domain concentrations of input substances and automatically creates both the topology of the network of chemical reactions and the rates of each reaction within the network such that the concentration of the final product of the automatically created network matches the observed time-domain data. Specifically, genetic programming automatically created metabolic pathways involved in the phospholipid cycle and the synthesis and degradation of ketone bodies. PMID:11262962

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. A CRISPR-Cas9 System for Genetic Engineering of Filamentous Fungi

    PubMed Central

    Nødvig, 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

  15. 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

  16. 76 FR 37767 - Pioneer Hi-Bred International, Inc.; Determination of Nonregulated Status for Corn Genetically...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-06-28

    ... Nonregulated Status for Corn Genetically Engineered To Produce Male Sterile/Female Inbred Plants AGENCY: Animal..., which has been genetically engineered to produce male sterile/female inbred plants for the generation of... regulations governing the introduction of certain genetically engineered organisms. Our determination is...

  17. 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.

  18. Parallel Markov chain Monte Carlo - bridging the gap to high-performance Bayesian computation in animal breeding and genetics

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Most Bayesian models for the analysis of complex traits are not analytically tractable and inferences are based on computationally intensive techniques. This is true of Bayesian models for genome-enabled selection, which uses whole-genome molecular data to predict the genetic merit of candidate animals for breeding purposes. In this regard, parallel computing can overcome the bottlenecks that can arise from series computing. Hence, a major goal of the present study is to bridge the gap to high-performance Bayesian computation in the context of animal breeding and genetics. Results Parallel Monte Carlo Markov chain algorithms and strategies are described in the context of animal breeding and genetics. Parallel Monte Carlo algorithms are introduced as a starting point including their applications to computing single-parameter and certain multiple-parameter models. Then, two basic approaches for parallel Markov chain Monte Carlo are described: one aims at parallelization within a single chain; the other is based on running multiple chains, yet some variants are discussed as well. Features and strategies of the parallel Markov chain Monte Carlo are illustrated using real data, including a large beef cattle dataset with 50K SNP genotypes. Conclusions Parallel Markov chain Monte Carlo algorithms are useful for computing complex Bayesian models, which does not only lead to a dramatic speedup in computing but can also be used to optimize model parameters in complex Bayesian models. Hence, we anticipate that use of parallel Markov chain Monte Carlo will have a profound impact on revolutionizing the computational tools for genomic selection programs. PMID:23009363

  19. Multi-trait animal model estimation of genetic parameters for linear type and gait traits in the Belgian warmblood horse.

    PubMed

    Rustin, M; Janssens, S; Buys, N; Gengler, N

    2009-10-01

    Genetic parameters for the height at withers, 27 linear type and six linear gait traits were estimated for the Belgian warmblood horse. Observations on 987 mares, mostly 3 years old, were analysed using a multi-trait animal model. The statistical model included appraiser, age and location (date x place of appraisal) as fixed effects. Genetic parameters were estimated using a canonical transformation and an expectation-maximization restricted maximum likelihood algorithm with an additional deceleration step. Estimates of heritability for the 33 linear traits were between 0.15 and 0.55. Heritability of the height at withers was 0.34 +/- 0.06. Estimated genetic correlations ranged from -0.60 to 0.98 with an average SE of 0.10. The highest positive correlations were found among traits of walk and among traits of trot. Volume and the quality of legs were the most negatively correlated. Estimated genetic parameters indicated that the linear scoring system is a valuable tool to assess conformation. The full (co)variance matrix is now available for breeding value estimation to support selection for conformation and gaits. PMID:19765164

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. DNA methyltransferase inhibitor, zebularine, delays tumor growth and induces apoptosis in a genetically engineered mouse model of breast cancer.

    PubMed

    Chen, Min; Shabashvili, Daniel; Nawab, Akbar; Yang, Sherry X; Dyer, Lisa M; Brown, Kevin D; Hollingshead, Melinda; Hunter, Kent W; Kaye, Frederic J; Hochwald, Steven N; Marquez, Victor E; Steeg, Patricia; Zajac-Kaye, Maria

    2012-02-01

    Zebularine is a novel potent inhibitor of both cytidine deaminase and DNA methylation. We examined the effect of zebularine on mammary tumor growth in genetically engineered MMTV-PyMT transgenic mice that develop mammary tumors at 60 days of age with 100% penetrance. The MMTV-PyMT transgenic mice were randomized at 46 days of age into control (n = 25) and zebularine (n = 25) treatment groups and monitored for parameters of tumor growth. Zebularine was administered at 5 mg/mL in drinking water. We observed a significant delay in the growth of mammary tumors in zebularine-treated mice with a statistically significant reduction (P = 0.0135) in total tumor burden at 94 days of age when the mice were sacrificed. After 48 days of zebularine treatment, the tumors were predominantly necrotic compared with untreated animals. In addition, a high apoptotic index by terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick end labeling assay was observed as early as 13 days following treatment. Immunoblot analysis showed depletion of DNMT1 and partial depletion of DNMT3b after zebularine treatment. Microarray analyses of global gene expression identified upregulation of twelve methylation-regulated genes as well as a set of candidate cancer genes that participate in cell growth and apoptosis. In summary, zebularine inhibits the growth of spontaneous mammary tumors and causes early onset of tumor cell necrosis and apoptosis in a genetically engineered mouse model of breast cancer. Defining the parameters of zebularine-mediated tumor inhibition may advance the future development of DNA methyltransferase inhibitors as an effective cancer treatment. PMID:22203734

  3. 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...

  4. 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...

  5. 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)

  6. 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...

  7. Characterization of mobile genetic elements in antibiotic resistant Salmonella enterica isolates from food animals

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Antibiotic resistance (AR) is a major concern for the agricultural industry in the U.S. and globally. The problem of AR is further complicated by AR genes often being located on mobile genetic elements (MGEs) resulting in their spread among bacteria. In order to investigate the relationship between ...

  8. 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; Labbé, Geneviève; 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 engineeredgenetically 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

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. 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 ...

  12. 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...

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. Engineering modular and tunable genetic amplifiers for scaling transcriptional signals in cascaded gene networks.

    PubMed

    Wang, Baojun; Barahona, Mauricio; Buck, Martin

    2014-08-01

    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

  16. 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

  17. Cloning adult animals - what is the genetic age of the clones?

    PubMed

    Yang, X; Tian, X C

    2000-01-01

    The rapid progress in cloning research along with its many ramifications will soon have a significant beneficial impact on basic research, agriculture, and biomedicine. However, for the nuclear transfer technology to reach its fullest potential, it is important to understand whether the cloning procedure can reverse cellular aging and generate clones with normal genetic and physiological age, similar to those produced from natural reproduction. Telomere shortening is believed to correlate with cellular aging both in vitro and in vivo. Telomere lengths in cells of cloned individuals thus may reflect their genetic age. However, controversies have developed over whether the eroded telomere in somatic cells used for nuclear transfer can be restored during the cloning process. PMID:16218848

  18. 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

  19. Genetic Diversity of Intimin Gene of Atypical Enteropathogenic Escherichia coli Isolated from Human, Animals and Raw Meats in China

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Yanmei; Bai, Xiangning; Zhao, Ailan; Zhang, Wang; Ba, Pengbin; Liu, Kai; Jin, Yujuan; Wang, Hong; Guo, Qiusheng; Sun, Hui; Xu, Jianguo; Xiong, Yanwen

    2016-01-01

    Atypical enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (aEPEC) is considered to be an emerging enteropathogen that is more prevalent than typical EPEC in developing and developed countries. The major adherence factor, intimin, an outer membrane protein encoded by eae, plays a pivotal role in the pathogenesis of aEPEC. This study investigated the distribution and polymorphisms of intimin subtypes of 143 aEPEC strains from diarrheal patients, healthy carriers, animals, and raw meats in China. These aEPEC strains belonged to more than 71 different serotypes, which comprised 52 O serogroups and 24 H types. Sixty-eight different eae genotypes and 19 intimin subtypes were detected. Eighteen, eight, seven, and five intimin subtypes were identified from 86 diarrheal patients, 14 healthy carriers, 19 animals, and 24 raw meats strains, respectively. Intimin β1 was the most prevalent subtype in strains from diarrheal patients (34.88%) and animals (47.37%). There was a statistically significant difference in the distribution of eae-β1 between diarrheal patients and healthy carriers (P = 0.004). Intimin-θ was more predominant among raw meat strains (50%) than among diarrheal patients strains (12.79%, P = 0.0003), healthy carrier strains (7.14%, P = 0.007), or animal strains (15.79%, P = 0.020). The two predominant subtypes (eae-β1 and eae-θ) had considerable polymorphisms with no significant differences among the four sources. PFGE analysis revealed 119 distinct patterns and the strains were clustered into 11 groups with similarity indices ranging from 63% to 100%. These results suggest that in China, aEPEC strains from different sources are highly heterogeneous. Animals and raw meats are important sources of genetically diverse intimin-harboring aEPEC, which might serve as important transmission vehicles of these bacteria. PMID:27031337

  20. 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.

  1. 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.)

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. Genetic engineering of bacteria and their potential for Hg2+ bioremediation.

    PubMed

    Chen, S; Wilson, D B

    1997-01-01

    Ion exchange or biosorptive processes for metal removal generally lack specificity in metal binding and are sensitive to ambient conditions, e.g. pH, ionic strength and the presence of metal chelators. In this study, cells of a genetically engineered Escherichia coli strain, JM109, which expresses metallothionein and a Hg2+ transport system after induction were evaluated for their selectivity for Hg2+ accumulation in the presence of sodium, magnesium, or cadmium ions and their sensitivity to pH or the presence of metal chelators during Hg2+ bioaccumulation. The genetically engineered E. coli cells in suspension accumulated Hg2+ effectively at low concentrations (0-20 microM) over a broad range of pH (3 to 11). The presence of 400 mM sodium chloride, 200 mM magnesium chloride, or 100 microM cadmium ions did not have a significant effect on the bioaccumulation of 5 microM Hg2+, indicating that this process is not sensitive to high ionic strength and is highly selective against sodium, magnesium, or cadmium ions. Metal chelators usually interfere with ion exchange or biosorptive processes. However, two common metal chelators, EDTA and citrate, had no significant effect on Hg2+ bioaccumulation by the genetically engineered strain. These results suggest that this E. coli strain could be used for selective removal of Hg2+ from waste water or from contaminated solutions which are resistant to common treatments. A second potential application would be to remove Hg2+ from Hg(2+)-contaminated soil, sediment, or particulates by washing them with a Hg2+ chelator and regenerating the chelator by passing the solution through a reactor containing the strain. PMID:9342882

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. A comparative risk assessment of genetically engineered, mutagenic, and conventional wheat production systems.

    PubMed

    Peterson, Robert K D; Shama, Leslie M

    2005-12-01

    Wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) varieties produced using modern biotechnologies, such as genetic engineering and mutagenic techniques, have lagged behind other crop species, but are now being developed and, in the case of mutagenic wheat, commercially grown around the world. Because these wheat varieties have emerged recently, there is a unique opportunity to assess comparatively the potential environmental risks (human health, ecological, and livestock risks) associated with genetically engineered, mutagenic, and conventional wheat production systems. Replacement of traditional herbicides with glyphosate in a glyphosate-tolerant (genetically engineered) wheat system or imazamox in an imidazolinone-tolerant (mutagenic) wheat system may alter environmental risks associated with weed management. Additionally, because both systems rely on plants that express novel proteins, the proteins and plants themselves may impose risks. The purpose of our study was to examine comparatively the multiple aspects of risk associated with different wheat production systems in the US and Canada using the risk assessment paradigm. Specifically, we used tier 1 quantitative and qualitative risk assessment methods to compare specific environmental risks associated with the different wheat production systems. Both glyphosate and imazamox present lower human health and ecological risks than many other herbicides associated with conventional wheat production systems evaluated in this study. The differences in risks were most pronounced when comparing glyphosate and imazamox to herbicides currently with substantial market share. Current weight-of-evidence suggests that the transgenic CP4 EPSPS protein present in glyphosate-tolerant wheat poses negligible risk to humans, livestock, and wildlife. Risk for mutated AHAS protein in imidazolinone-tolerant wheat most likely would be low, but there are not sufficient effect and exposure data to adequately characterize risk. Environmental risks for herbicides were more amenable to quantitative assessments than for the transgenic CP4 EPSPS protein and the mutated AHAS protein. PMID:16315092

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. "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

  8. 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

  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. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. 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.

  16. Genetic Engineering: A Promising Tool to Engender Physiological, Biochemical, and Molecular Stress Resilience in Green Microalgae.

    PubMed

    Guihéneuf, Freddy; Khan, Asif; Tran, Lam-Son P

    2016-01-01

    As we march into the 21st century, the prevailing scenario of depleting energy resources, global warming and ever increasing issues of human health and food security will quadruple. In this context, genetic and metabolic engineering of green microalgae complete the quest toward a continuum of environmentally clean fuel and food production. Evolutionarily related, but unlike land plants, microalgae need nominal land or water, and are best described as unicellular autotrophs using light energy to fix atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) into algal biomass, mitigating fossil CO2 pollution in the process. Remarkably, a feature innate to most microalgae is synthesis and accumulation of lipids (60-65% of dry weight), carbohydrates and secondary metabolites like pigments and vitamins, especially when grown under abiotic stress conditions. Particularly fruitful, such an application of abiotic stress factors such as nitrogen starvation, salinity, heat shock, etc., can be used in a biorefinery concept for production of multiple valuable products. The focus of this mini-review underlies metabolic reorientation practices and tolerance mechanisms as applied to green microalgae under specific stress stimuli for a sustainable pollution-free future. Moreover, we entail current progress on genetic engineering as a promising tool to grasp adaptive processes for improving strains with potential biotechnological interests. PMID:27066043

  17. 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

  18. Ethical manipulations: an ethical evaluation of the debate surrounding genetic engineering.

    PubMed

    van Tongeren, P J

    1991-01-01

    "Manipulation" per se is not bad. The crucial question in the moral debate about genetic engineering is: When and how are we allowed to manipulate? Unfortunately, the moral discussion surrounding this question is itself being manipulated. There are moral manipulations (by those who wish to either reassure or to alarm) and there are ethical manipulations (the failed utilitarian calculus and the centering of the discussion only around rules, rights, and duties). A different ethical approach is needed: one based on virtues. The duty of ethics is to help us understand the moral possibilities in each situation, i.e., to develop our moral sensibility. In the area of genetic engineering research we are motivated by a will to know, but at the same time we fear total self knowledge. We want to control, to improve our world and ourselves, but we recoil at obtaining ultimate perfection. Therefore, we must value the unknowable, the uncontrollable. Our everincreasing capacity to mould the world and ourselves is making it more difficult to develop a sensitivity for what is given and cannot be made. It is dangerous for our ethics to assume the activistic traits of our technology. We risk losing a fundamental element of what we are, or ought to be. We should train ourselves in moral passivity. PMID:1863642

  19. Genetic Engineering: A Promising Tool to Engender Physiological, Biochemical, and Molecular Stress Resilience in Green Microalgae

    PubMed Central

    Guihéneuf, Freddy; Khan, Asif; Tran, Lam-Son P.

    2016-01-01

    As we march into the 21st century, the prevailing scenario of depleting energy resources, global warming and ever increasing issues of human health and food security will quadruple. In this context, genetic and metabolic engineering of green microalgae complete the quest toward a continuum of environmentally clean fuel and food production. Evolutionarily related, but unlike land plants, microalgae need nominal land or water, and are best described as unicellular autotrophs using light energy to fix atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) into algal biomass, mitigating fossil CO2 pollution in the process. Remarkably, a feature innate to most microalgae is synthesis and accumulation of lipids (60–65% of dry weight), carbohydrates and secondary metabolites like pigments and vitamins, especially when grown under abiotic stress conditions. Particularly fruitful, such an application of abiotic stress factors such as nitrogen starvation, salinity, heat shock, etc., can be used in a biorefinery concept for production of multiple valuable products. The focus of this mini-review underlies metabolic reorientation practices and tolerance mechanisms as applied to green microalgae under specific stress stimuli for a sustainable pollution-free future. Moreover, we entail current progress on genetic engineering as a promising tool to grasp adaptive processes for improving strains with potential biotechnological interests. PMID:27066043

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. 18F-FDG-PET/CT imaging of drug-induced metabolic changes in genetically engineered mouse lung cancer models.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yuchuan; Kung, Andrew L

    2015-02-01

    The most commonly used radiotracer for cancer imaging in humans and mice is 2-deoxy-2-((18)F)fluoro-d-glucose ((18)F-FDG). We have used FDG coupled with positron-emission tomography (PET) to assess the pharmacodynamic efficacy of a number of therapeutics in genetically engineered mouse lung cancer models. In this protocol, we present our approach for FDG-PET imaging of early tumor metabolic changes induced by drug treatment. Special consideration is given to animal preparation, anesthesia, and PET/computed tomography (CT) imaging of mice with lung tumors. Specifically, we recommend fasting the mice overnight to reduce background, using sevoflurane anesthesia and a "conscious" uptake period to minimize cardiac FDG uptake, adopting a relatively short duration of CT and PET scanning to facilitate serial imaging, and quantifying the comparison between the maximum standardized uptake values (SUVs) of lung tumors before and after treatment to determine treatment effects. Used in this manner, FDG-PET can rapidly assess tumor metabolism before and after treatment with an experimental therapeutic. In many cases, metabolic changes are apparent after just a single dose of treatment, helping to show target engagement and modulation by the drug (pharmacodynamic efficacy) within days of starting therapy. PMID:25646497

  3. Genetic Adaptation of Influenza A Viruses in Domestic Animals and Their Potential Role in Interspecies Transmission: A Literature Review.

    PubMed

    Munoz, Olga; De Nardi, Marco; van der Meulen, Karen; van Reeth, Kristien; Koopmans, Marion; Harris, Kate; von Dobschuetz, Sophie; Freidl, Gudrun; Meijer, Adam; Breed, Andrew; Hill, Andrew; Kosmider, Rowena; Banks, Jill; Stärk, Katharina D C; Wieland, Barbara; Stevens, Kim; van der Werf, Sylvie; Enouf, Vincent; Dauphin, Gwenaelle; Dundon, William; Cattoli, Giovanni; Capua, Ilaria

    2016-03-01

    In December 2011, the European Food Safety Authority awarded a Grant for the implementation of the FLURISK project. The main objective of FLURISK was the development of an epidemiological and virological evidence-based influenza risk assessment framework (IRAF) to assess influenza A virus strains circulating in the animal population according to their potential to cross the species barrier and cause infections in humans. With the purpose of gathering virological data to include in the IRAF, a literature review was conducted and key findings are presented here. Several adaptive traits have been identified in influenza viruses infecting domestic animals and a significance of these adaptations for the emergence of zoonotic influenza, such as shift in receptor preference and mutations in the replication proteins, has been hypothesized. Nonetheless, and despite several decades of research, a comprehensive understanding of the conditions that facilitate interspecies transmission is still lacking. This has been hampered by the intrinsic difficulties of the subject and the complexity of correlating environmental, viral and host factors. Finding the most suitable and feasible way of investigating these factors in laboratory settings represents another challenge. The majority of the studies identified through this review focus on only a subset of species, subtypes and genes, such as influenza in avian species and avian influenza viruses adapting to humans, especially in the context of highly pathogenic avian influenza H5N1. Further research applying a holistic approach and investigating the broader influenza genetic spectrum is urgently needed in the field of genetic adaptation of influenza A viruses. PMID:25630935

  4. Influence of genetic composition of test-animal populations on chronic toxicity studies used for risk estimation.

    PubMed

    Littlefield, N A; Wolff, G L; Nelson, C J

    1985-01-01

    A lifespan exposure of mice to benzidine dihydrochloride was conducted for 33 m using both sexes of two populations of mice with the same gene pool. One population was the genetically homogeneous F1 hybrid produced by crossing BALB/cStCrlC3Hf/Nctr males with C57BL/6jfC3Hf/Nctr females. The second population consisted of genetically heterogenous monohybrid cross (MC) offspring produced by mating the F1 hybrids inter se. Data comparisons were made to determine if gene distribution among members of a population affects the response to a toxic insult. Endpoints tested consisted of mortality, liver tumor incidence and time of tumor onset, mortality from reticulum-cell sarcoma, and body weights. In most instances it was noted that among animals not dosed (controls), the F1 population had lower background incidence of lesions and lived longer than the MC population. However, among the dosed animals, the F1 mice were generally more susceptible to the toxic agent and developed higher incidences of the chemically induced lesions than did the MC population. The F1 hybrid population gave a more conservative estimate of risk than did the MC population. The calculation of the liver tumor risk for these two populations showed that lifespan exposure to benzidine would be predicted to result in a larger number (higher risk) when using the F1 data. A 4.5-fold difference in the toxic response was observed between the F1 females and the MC males. This emphasizes the importance of gene distribution in risk estimation studies. PMID:4032486

  5. Influence of genetic composition of test-animal populations on chronic toxicity studies used for risk estimation

    SciTech Connect

    Littlefield, N.A.; Wolff, G.L.; Nelson, C.J.

    1985-01-01

    A lifespan exposure of mice to benzidine dihydrochloride was conducted for 33 m using both sexes of two populations of mice with the same gene pool. One population was the genetically homogeneous F/sub 1/ hybrid produced by crossing BALB/cStCrlC3Hf/Nctr males with C57BL/6JfC3Hf/Nctr females. The second population consisted of genetically heterogenous monohybrid cross (MC) offspring produced by mating the F/sub 1/ hybrids inter se. Data comparisons were made to determine if gene distribution among members of a population affects the response to a toxic insult. Endpoints tested consisted of mortality, liver tumor incidence and time of tumor onset, mortality from reticulum-cell sarcoma, and body weights. In most instances it was noted that among animals not dosed (controls), the F/sub 1/ population has lower background incidence of lesions and lived longer than the MC population. However, among the dosed animals, the F/sub 1/ mice were generally more susceptible to the toxic agent and developed higher incidences of the chemically induced lesions than did the MC population. The F/sub 1/ hybrid population gave a more conservative estimate of risk than did the MC population. The calculation of the liver tumor risk for these two populations showed that lifespan, exposure to benzidine would be predicted to result in a larger number (higher risk) when using the F/sub 1/ data. A 4.5-fold difference in the toxic response was observed between the F/sub 1/ females and the MC males. This emphasizes the importance of gene distribution in risk estimation studies.

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. Genetics, genomics, and molecular biology of sex determination in small animals.

    PubMed

    Meyers-Wallen, Vicki N

    2006-10-01

    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

  10. 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.

  11. 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 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

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. Production of Engineered Fabrics Using Artificial Neural Network-Genetic Algorithm Hybrid Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mitra, Ashis; Majumdar, Prabal Kumar; Banerjee, Debamalya

    2015-10-01

    The process of fabric engineering which is generally practised in most of the textile mills is very complicated, repetitive, tedious and time consuming. To eliminate this trial and error approach, a new approach of fabric engineering has been attempted in this work. Data sets of construction parameters [comprising of ends per inch, picks per inch, warp count and weft count] and three fabric properties (namely drape coefficient, air permeability and thermal resistance) of 25 handloom cotton fabrics have been used. The weights and biases of three artificial neural network (ANN) models developed for the prediction of drape coefficient, air permeability and thermal resistance were used to formulate the fitness or objective function and constraints of the optimization problem. The optimization problem was solved using genetic algorithm (GA). In both the fabrics which were attempted for engineering, the target and simulated fabric properties were very close. The GA was able to search the optimum set of fabric construction parameters with reasonably good accuracy except in case of EPI. However, the overall result is encouraging and can be improved further by using larger data sets of handloom fabrics by hybrid ANN-GA model.

  16. A Pseudomonas putida Strain Genetically Engineered for 1,2,3-Trichloropropane Bioremediation

    PubMed Central

    Samin, Ghufrana; Pavlova, Martina; Arif, M. Irfan; Postema, Christiaan P.; Damborsky, Jiri

    2014-01-01

    1,2,3-Trichloropropane (TCP) is a toxic compound that is recalcitrant to biodegradation in the environment. Attempts to isolate TCP-degrading organisms using enrichment cultivation have failed. A potential biodegradation pathway starts with hydrolytic dehalogenation to 2,3-dichloro-1-propanol (DCP), followed by oxidative metabolism. To obtain a practically applicable TCP-degrading organism, we introduced an engineered haloalkane dehalogenase with improved TCP degradation activity into the DCP-degrading bacterium Pseudomonas putida MC4. For this purpose, the dehalogenase gene (dhaA31) was cloned behind the constitutive dhlA promoter and was introduced into the genome of strain MC4 using a transposon delivery system. The transposon-located antibiotic resistance marker was subsequently removed using a resolvase step. Growth of the resulting engineered bacterium, P. putida MC4-5222, on TCP was indeed observed, and all organic chlorine was released as chloride. A packed-bed reactor with immobilized cells of strain MC4-5222 degraded >95% of influent TCP (0.33 mM) under continuous-flow conditions, with stoichiometric release of inorganic chloride. The results demonstrate the successful use of a laboratory-evolved dehalogenase and genetic engineering to produce an effective, plasmid-free, and stable whole-cell biocatalyst for the aerobic bioremediation of a recalcitrant chlorinated hydrocarbon. PMID:24973068

  17. Automated, quantitative cognitive/behavioral screening of mice: for genetics, pharmacology, animal cognition and undergraduate instruction.

    PubMed

    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 in cabinet; two such cabinets (16 environments) may be controlled by one computer. PMID:24637442

  18. 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

  19. How can plant genetic engineering contribute to cost-effective fish vaccine development for promoting sustainable aquaculture?

    PubMed

    Clarke, Jihong Liu; Waheed, Mohammad Tahir; Lössl, Andreas G; Martinussen, Inger; Daniell, Henry

    2013-09-01

    Aquaculture, the fastest growing food-producing sector, now accounts for nearly 50 % of the world's food fish (FAO in The state of world fisheries and aquaculture. FAO, Rome, 2010). The global aquaculture production of food fish reached 62.7 million tonnes in 2011 and is continuously increasing with an estimated production of food fish of 66.5 million tonnes in 2012 (a 9.4 % increase in 1 year, FAO, www.fao.org/fishery/topic/16140 ). Aquaculture is not only important for sustainable protein-based food fish production but also for the aquaculture industry and economy worldwide. Disease prevention is the key issue to maintain a sustainable development of aquaculture. Widespread use of antibiotics in aquaculture has led to the development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria and the accumulation of antibiotics in the environment, resulting in water and soil pollution. Thus, vaccination is the most effective and environmentally-friendly approach to combat diseases in aquaculture to manage fish health. Furthermore, when compared to >760 vaccines against human diseases, there are only about 30 fish vaccines commercially available, suggesting the urgent need for development and cost-effective production of fish vaccines for managing fish health, especially in the fast growing fish farming in Asia where profit is minimal and therefore given high priority. Plant genetic engineering has made significant contributions to production of biotech crops for food, feed, valuable recombinant proteins etc. in the past three decades. The use of plants for vaccine production offers several advantages such as low cost, safety and easy scaling up. To date a large number of plant-derived vaccines, antibodies and therapeutic proteins have been produced for human health, of which a few have been made commercially available. However, the development of animal vaccines in plants, especially fish vaccines by genetic engineering, has not yet been addressed. Therefore, there is a need to exploit plant biotechnology for cost effective fish vaccine development in plants, in particular, edible crops for oral fish vaccines. This review provides insight into (1) the current status of fish vaccine and vaccination in aquaculture, (2) plant biotechnology and edible crops for fish vaccines for oral administration, (3) regulatory constraints and (4) conclusions and future perspectives. PMID:23729352

  20. Construction and characterization of VL-VH tail-parallel genetically engineered antibodies against staphylococcal enterotoxins.

    PubMed

    He, Xianzhi; Zhang, Lei; Liu, Pengchong; Liu, Li; Deng, Hui; Huang, Jinhai

    2015-03-01

    Staphylococcal enterotoxins (SEs) produced by Staphylococcus aureus have increasingly given rise to human health and food safety. Genetically engineered small molecular antibody is a useful tool in immuno-detection and treatment for clinical illness caused by SEs. In this study, we constructed the V(L)-V(H) tail-parallel genetically engineered antibody against SEs by using the repertoire of rearranged germ-line immunoglobulin variable region genes. Total RNA were extracted from six hybridoma cell lines that stably express anti-SEs antibodies. The variable region genes of light chain (V(L)) and heavy chain (V(H)) were cloned by reverse transcription PCR, and their classical murine antibody structure and functional V(D)J gene rearrangement were analyzed. To construct the eukaryotic V(H)-V(L) tail-parallel co-expression vectors based on the "5'-V(H)-ivs-IRES-V(L)-3'" mode, the ivs-IRES fragment and V(L) genes were spliced by two-step overlap extension PCR, and then, the recombined gene fragment and V(H) genes were inserted into the pcDNA3.1(+) expression vector sequentially. And then the constructed eukaryotic expression clones termed as p2C2HILO and p5C12HILO were transfected into baby hamster kidney 21 cell line, respectively. Two clonal cell lines stably expressing V(L)-V(H) tail-parallel antibodies against SEs were obtained, and the antibodies that expressed intracytoplasma were evaluated by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, immunofluorescence assay, and flow cytometry. SEs can stimulate the expression of some chemokines and chemokine receptors in porcine IPEC-J2 cells; mRNA transcription level of four chemokines and chemokine receptors can be blocked by the recombinant SE antibody prepared in this study. Our results showed that it is possible to get functional V(L)-V(H) tail-parallel genetically engineered antibodies in same vector using eukaryotic expression system. PMID:25608796

  1. Genetic engineering: Baculoviruses as expression vectors. (Latest citations from the Life Sciences Collection data base). Published Search

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1992-05-01

    The bibliography contains citations concerning the use of baculoviruses in genetic engineering. Baculoviruses produce large quantities of a specific gene. Topics include genetic replication, expression of selected genes in host cells, and protein expression using baculoviruses. Baculovirus introduction into mammals causing antibody expression is considered, and implications on vaccine programs are briefly discussed. (Contains a minimum of 112 citations and includes a subject term index and title list.)

  2. Physiological significance of ghrelin revealed by studies using genetically engineered mouse models with modifications in the ghrelin system.

    PubMed

    Ariyasu, Hiroyuki; Akamizu, Takashi

    2015-01-01

    Ghrelin, an endogenous ligand for the growth hormone (GH) secretagogue receptor (GHS-R or ghrelin receptor), is a 28-amino acid acylated peptide mainly produced in the stomach. The pharmacological administration of ghrelin is known to exert diverse effects, such as stimulating GH secretion, promoting food intake, and increasing adiposity. In recent years, genetically engineered mouse models have provided important insights into the physiology of various hormones. In this review, we discuss current knowledge regarding the physiological significance of ghrelin on the basis of studies using genetically engineered mouse models with modifications in the ghrelin system. PMID:26226836

  3. Governing the moral economy: Animal engineering, ethics and the liberal government of science

    PubMed Central

    Harvey, Alison; Salter, Brian

    2012-01-01

    The preferred Western model for science governance has come to involve attending to the perspectives of the public. In practice, however, this model has been criticised for failing to promote democracy along participatory lines. We argue that contemporary approaches to science policy making demonstrate less the failure of democracy and more the success of liberal modes of government in adapting to meet new governance challenges. Using a case study of recent UK policy debates on scientific work mixing human and animal biological material, we show first how a ‘moral economy’ is brought into being as a regulatory domain and second how this domain is governed to align cultural with scientific values. We suggest that it is through these practices that the state assures its aspirations for enhancing individual and collective prosperity through technological advance are met. PMID:22507952

  4. Over production of lignocellulosic enzymes of Coriolus versicolor by genetic engineering methodology. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Williams, A.L.

    1998-07-01

    The project seeks to understand the biological and chemical processes involved in the secretion of the enzyme polyphenol oxidase (PPO) by the hyphae, the basic unit of the filamentous fungus Coriolus versicolor. These studies are made to determine rational strategies for enhanced secretion of PPO, both with the use of recombinant DNA techniques and without. This effort focuses on recombinant DNA techniques to enhance enzyme production. The major thrust of this project was two-fold: to mass produce C. versicolor tyrosinase (polyphenol oxidase) by genetic engineering as well as cultural manipulations; and to utilize PPO as a biocatalyst in the processing of lignocellulose as a renewable energy resource. In this study, the assessment of genomic and cDNA recombinant clones with regards to the overproduction of PPO continued. Further, immunocytochemical techniques were employed to assess the mechanism(s) involved in the secretion of PPO by the hyphae. Also, factors influencing PPO secretion were examined.

  5. Genetically Engineered Mice as Experimental Tools to Dissect the Critical Events in Breast Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Menezes, Mitchell E.; Das, Swadesh K.; Emdad, Luni; Windle, Jolene J.; Wang, Xiang-Yang; Sarkar, Devanand; Fisher, Paul B.

    2015-01-01

    Elucidating the mechanism of pathogenesis of breast cancer has greatly benefited from breakthrough advances in both genetically engineered mouse (GEM) models and xenograft transplantation technologies. The vast array of breast cancer mouse models currently available is testimony to the complexity of mammary tumorigenesis and attempts by investigators to accurately portray the heterogeneity and intricacies of this disease. Distinct molecular changes that drive various aspects of tumorigenesis, such as alterations in tumor cell proliferation and apoptosis, invasion and metastasis, angiogenesis, and drug resistance have been evaluated using the currently available GEM breast cancer models. GEM breast cancer models are also being exploited to evaluate and validate the efficacy of novel therapeutics, vaccines, and imaging modalities for potential use in the clinic. This review provides a synopsis of the various GEM models that are expanding our knowledge of the nuances of breast cancer development and progression and can be instrumental in the development of novel prevention and therapeutic approaches for this disease. PMID:24889535

  6. Biochemical and Genetic Engineering of Diatoms for Polyunsaturated Fatty Acid Biosynthesis

    PubMed Central

    Li, Hong-Ye; Lu, Yang; Zheng, Jian-Wei; Yang, Wei-Dong; Liu, Jie-Sheng

    2014-01-01

    The role of diatoms as a source of bioactive compounds has been recently explored. Diatom cells store a high amount of fatty acids, especially certain polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs). However, many aspects of diatom metabolism and the production of PUFAs remain unclear. This review describes a number of technical strategies, such as modulation of environmental factors (temperature, light, chemical composition of culture medium) and culture methods, to influence the content of PUFAs in diatoms. Genetic engineering, a newly emerging field, also plays an important role in controlling the synthesis of fatty acids in marine microalgae. Several key points in the biosynthetic pathway of PUFAs in diatoms as well as recent progresses are also a critical part and are summarized here. PMID:24402175

  7. Genetic engineering of modular PKSs: from combinatorial biosynthesis to synthetic biology.

    PubMed

    Weissman, Kira J

    2016-02-01

    Covering: up to 2015Multienzyme polyketide synthases (PKSs) are molecular-scale assembly lines which construct complex natural products in bacteria. The underlying modular architecture of these gigantic catalysts inspired, from the moment of their discovery, attempts to modify them by genetic engineering to produce analogues of predictable structure. These efforts have resulted in hundreds of metabolites new to nature, as detailed in this review. However, in the face of many failures, the heady days of imagining the possibilities for a truly 'combinatorial biosynthesis' of polyketides have faded. It is now more appropriate to talk about 'PKS synthetic biology' with its more modest goals of delivering specific derivatives of known structure in combination with and as a complement to synthetic chemistry approaches. The reasons for these failures will be discussed in terms of our growing understanding of the three-dimensional architectures and mechanisms of these systems. Finally, some thoughts on the future of the field will be presented. PMID:26555805

  8. Exploring the Properties of Genetically Engineered Silk-Elastin-Like Protein Films.

    PubMed

    Machado, Raul; da Costa, André; Sencadas, Vitor; Pereira, Ana Margarida; Collins, Tony; Rodríguez-Cabello, José Carlos; Lanceros-Méndez, Senentxu; Casal, Margarida

    2015-12-01

    Free standing films of a genetically engineered silk-elastin-like protein (SELP) were prepared using water and formic acid as solvents. Exposure to methanol-saturated air promoted the formation of aggregated β-strands rendering aqueous insolubility and improved the mechanical properties leading to a 10-fold increase in strain-to-failure. The films were optically clear with resistivity values similar to natural rubber and thermally stable up to 180 °C. Addition of glycerol showed to enhance the flexibility of SELP/glycerol films by interacting with SELP molecules through hydrogen bonding, interpenetrating between the polymer chains and granting more conformational freedom. This detailed characterization provides cues for future and unique applications using SELP based biopolymers. PMID:26214274

  9. Genetically engineered mouse models to evaluate the role of Wnt secretion in bone development and homeostasis.

    PubMed

    Williams, Bart O

    2016-03-01

    Alterations in components of the Wnt signaling pathway are associated with altered bone development and homeostasis in several human diseases. We created genetically engineered mouse models (GEMMs) that mimic the cellular defect associated with the Porcupine mutations in patients with Goltz Syndrome/Focal Dermal Hypoplasia. These GEMMs were established by utilizing mice containing a conditionally inactivatable allele of Wntless/GPR177 (a gene encoding a protein required for the transport of Porcupine-modified ligand to the plasma membrane for secretion). We crossed this strain to another which drives cre-mediated gene deletion in mature osteoblasts (Osteocalcin-cre) resulted in mice lacking the ability to secrete Wnt ligands in this cell type. These mice displayed severely reduced bone mass and provide a model to understand the effects of disrupting the ability to secrete Wnt ligands on the skeletal system. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26818176

  10. Effects of Genetically Engineered Microorganisms on Nitrogen Transformations and Nitrogen-Transforming Microbial Populations in Soil

    PubMed Central

    Jones, R. A.; Broder, M. W.; Stotzky, G.

    1991-01-01

    The principal concern about releasing genetically engineered microorganisms (GEMs) into the environment is their potential adverse effects on the environment, whether caused directly or indirectly by the GEMs. The effects of five GEMs on ammonification, nitrification, and denitrification in soil were studied. With the possible exception of a strain of Enterobacter cloacae carrying a plasmid, no consistent statistically or ecologically significant differences in effects on these processes or on the population dynamics of the microorganisms responsible for the processes were observed between soils inoculated with the GEMs or their homologous plasmidless hosts and those that were not inoculated. Increasing the concentration of montmorillonite in the soil enhanced the rate of nitrification, regardless of the inoculum, indicating that the perfusion technique used was sensitive enough to detect changes in nitrification rates when they occurred. PMID:16348584

  11. Label-Free Electrochemical Diagnosis of Viral Antigens with Genetically Engineered Fusion Protein

    PubMed Central

    Heo, Nam Su; Zheng, Shun; Yang, MinHo; Lee, Seok Jae; Lee, Sang Yup; Kim, Hwa-Jung; Park, Jung Youn; Lee, Chang-Soo; Park, Tae Jung

    2012-01-01

    We have developed a simple electrochemical biosensing strategy for the label-free diagnosis of hepatitis B virus (HBV) on a gold electrode surface. Gold-binding polypeptide (GBP) fused with single-chain antibody (ScFv) against HBV surface antigen (HBsAg), in forms of genetically engineered protein, was utilized. This GBP-ScFv fusion protein can directly bind onto the gold substrate with the strong binding affinity between the GBP and the gold surface, while the recognition site orients toward the sample for target binding at the same time. Furthermore, this one-step immobilization strategy greatly simplifies a fabrication process without any chemical modification as well as maintaining activity of biological recognition elements. This system allows specific immobilization of proteins and sensitive detection of targets, which were verified by surface plasmon resonance analysis and successfully applied to electrochemical cyclic voltammetry and impedance spectroscopy upto 0.14 ng/mL HBsAg. PMID:23112590

  12. Tree genetic engineering and applications to sustainable forestry and biomass production.

    PubMed

    Harfouche, Antoine; Meilan, Richard; Altman, Arie

    2011-01-01

    Forest trees provide raw materials, help to maintain biodiversity and mitigate the effects of climate change. Certain tree species can also be used as feedstocks for bioenergy production. Achieving these goals may require the introduction or modified expression of genes to enhance biomass production in a sustainable and environmentally responsible manner. Tree genetic engineering has advanced to the point at which genes for desirable traits can now be introduced and expressed efficiently; examples include biotic and abiotic stress tolerance, improved wood properties, root formation and phytoremediation. Transgene confinement, including flowering control, may be needed to avoid ecological risks and satisfy regulatory requirements. This and stable expression are key issues that need to be resolved before transgenic trees can be used commercially. PMID:20970211

  13. Containment of genetically engineered organisms after application to subsurface environments. Technical completion report

    SciTech Connect

    Crawford, D.; Crawford, R.; Kellogg, S.; Orser, C.; Ralston, D.

    1993-06-01

    The feasibility of containing genetically engineered bacteria with enhanced dehalogenating properties for in situ bioremediation was investigated. (1) An agarose matrix microbead protocol and a detection system for contained microorganisms or DNA were developed. Multiplex Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) allowed tracking of a consortium of encapsulated organisms or several gene targets from a single species. Gene sequences encoding the enzymes responsible for initiating the biodegradation of toluene, octane, and 2,4-D were detected by multiplex PCR and nucleic acid probes from similar to 1-10 biodegradative cells/g soil. Improved DNA extraction methods resulted in PCR reactions detecting similar to 6 cells/g soil. (2) The pcpB gene (for the broad-spectrum detoxicant pentachlorophenol (PCP) hydroxylase) isolated from Flavobacterium sp. strain ATCC 39723 was used in attempts to develop an improved dehalogenating recombinant microorganism for containment experiments.

  14. The Function of Herpes Simplex Virus Genes: A Primer for Genetic Engineering of Novel Vectors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roizman, Bernard

    1996-10-01

    Herpes simplex virus vectors are being developed for delivery and expression of human genes to the central nervous system, selective destruction of cancer cells, and as carriers for genes encoding antigens that induce protective immunity against infectious agents. Vectors constructed to meet these objectives must differ from wild-type virus with respect to host range, reactivation from latency, and expression of viral genes. The vectors currently being developed are (i) helper free amplicons, (ii) replication defective viruses, and (iii) genetically engineered replication competent viruses with restricted host range. Whereas the former two types of vectors require stable, continuous cell lines expressing viral genes for their replication, the replication competent viruses will replicate on approved primary human cell strains.

  15. Effect of Bt genetic engineering on indirect defense in cotton via a tritrophic interaction.

    PubMed

    Moraes, Maria Carolina Blassioli; Laumann, Raul Alberto; Aquino, Michely Ferreira Santos; Paula, Débora Pires; Borges, Miguel

    2011-02-01

    We present a tritrophic analysis of the potential non-intended pleiotropic effects of cry1Ac gene derived from Bacillus thurigiensis (Bt) insertion in cotton (DeltaPine 404 Bt Bollgard® variety) on the emission of herbivore induced volatile compounds and on the attraction of the egg parasitoid Trichogramma pretisoum (Hymenoptera: Trichogrammatidae). Both the herbivore damaged Bt variety and its non-Bt isoline (DeltaPine DP4049 variety) produced volatiles in higher quantity when compared to undamaged plants and significantly attracted the egg parasitoids (T. pretiosum) when compared to undamaged plants. However, Trichogramma pretiosum did not differentiate between the transgenic and nontransgenic varieties, suggesting that the ratios between the compounds released by herbivory damaged -Bt cotton and herbivory damaged-non Bt cotton did not change significantly. Finally, no detrimental effect of the Bt genetic engineering was detected related to the volatile compounds released by Bollgard cotton on the behavior of the natural enemy studied. PMID:20521103

  16. Can we build it better? Using BAC genetics to engineer more effective cytomegalovirus vaccines

    PubMed Central

    Schleiss, Mark R.

    2010-01-01

    The magnitude and durability of immunity to human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) following natural infection is compromised by the presence of immune modulation genes that appear to promote evasion of host clearance mechanisms. Since immunity to HCMV offers limited protection, rational design of effective vaccines has been challenging. In this issue of the JCI, Slavuljica and colleagues employ techniques to genetically modify the highly related mouse CMV (MCMV), in the process generating a virus that was rapidly cleared by NK cells. The virus functioned as a safe and highly effective vaccine. Demonstration of the ability to engineer a safe and highly effective live virus vaccine in a relevant rodent model of CMV infection may open the door to clinical trials of safer and more immunogenic HCMV vaccines. PMID:21099107

  17. Examining strategies to facilitate vitamin B1 biofortification of plants by genetic engineering

    PubMed Central

    Pourcel, Lucille; Moulin, Michael; Fitzpatrick, Teresa B.

    2013-01-01

    Thiamin (vitamin B1) is made by plants and microorganisms but is an essential micronutrient in the human diet. All organisms require it as a cofactor in its form as thiamin pyrophosphate (TPP) for the activity of key enzymes of central metabolism. In humans, deficiency is widespread particularly in populations where polished rice is a major component of the diet. Considerable progress has been made on the elucidation of the biosynthesis pathway within the last few years enabling concrete strategies for biofortification purposes to be devised, with a particular focus here on genetic engineering. Furthermore, the vitamin has been shown to play a role in both abiotic and biotic stress responses. The precursors for de novo biosynthesis of thiamin differ between microorganisms and plants. Bacteria use intermediates derived from purine and isoprenoid biosynthesis, whereas the pathway in yeast involves the use of compounds from the vitamin B3 and B6 groups. Plants on the other hand use a combination of the bacterial and yeast pathways and there is subcellular partitioning of the biosynthesis steps. Specifically, thiamin biosynthesis occurs in the chloroplast of plants through the separate formation of the pyrimidine and thiazole moieties, which are then coupled to form thiamin monophosphate (TMP). Phosphorylation of thiamin to form TPP occurs in the cytosol. Therefore, thiamin (or TMP) must be exported from the chloroplast to the cytosol for the latter step to be executed. The regulation of biosynthesis is mediated through riboswitches, where binding of the product TPP to the pre-mRNA of a biosynthetic gene modulates expression. Here we examine and hypothesize on genetic engineering approaches attempting to increase the thiamin content employing knowledge gained with the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana. We will discuss the regulatory steps that need to be taken into consideration and can be used a prerequisite for devising such strategies in crop plants. PMID:23755056

  18. Efficacy of Sunitinib and Radiotherapy in Genetically Engineered Mouse Model of Soft-Tissue Sarcoma

    SciTech Connect

    Yoon, Sam S. Stangenberg, Lars; Lee, Yoon-Jin; Rothrock, Courtney; Dreyfuss, Jonathan M.; Baek, Kwan-Hyuck; Waterman, Peter R.; Nielsen, G. Petur; Weissleder, Ralph; Mahmood, Umar; Park, Peter J.; Jacks, Tyler

    2009-07-15

    Purpose: Sunitinib (SU) is a multitargeted receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitor of the vascular endothelial growth factor and platelet-derived growth factor receptors. The present study examined SU and radiotherapy (RT) in a genetically engineered mouse model of soft tissue sarcoma (STS). Methods and Materials: Primary extremity STSs were generated in genetically engineered mice. The mice were randomized to treatment with SU, RT (10 Gy x 2), or both (SU+RT). Changes in the tumor vasculature before and after treatment were assessed in vivo using fluorescence-mediated tomography. The control and treated tumors were harvested and extensively analyzed. Results: The mean fluorescence in the tumors was not decreased by RT but decreased 38-44% in tumors treated with SU or SU+RT. The control tumors grew to a mean of 1378 mm{sup 3} after 12 days. SU alone or RT alone delayed tumor growth by 56% and 41%, respectively, but maximal growth inhibition (71%) was observed with the combination therapy. SU target effects were confirmed by loss of target receptor phosphorylation and alterations in SU-related gene expression. Cancer cell proliferation was decreased and apoptosis increased in the SU and RT groups, with a synergistic effect on apoptosis observed in the SU+RT group. RT had a minimal effect on the tumor microvessel density and endothelial cell-specific apoptosis, but SU alone or SU+RT decreased the microvessel density by >66% and induced significant endothelial cell apoptosis. Conclusion: SU inhibited STS growth by effects on both cancer cells and tumor vasculature. SU also augmented the efficacy of RT, suggesting that this combination strategy could improve local control of STS.

  19. Codon reassignment to facilitate genetic engineering and biocontainment in the chloroplast of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii.

    PubMed

    Young, Rosanna E B; Purton, Saul

    2016-05-01

    There is a growing interest in the use of microalgae as low-cost hosts for the synthesis of recombinant products such as therapeutic proteins and bioactive metabolites. In particular, the chloroplast, with its small, genetically tractable genome (plastome) and elaborate metabolism, represents an attractive platform for genetic engineering. In Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, none of the 69 protein-coding genes in the plastome uses the stop codon UGA, therefore this spare codon can be exploited as a useful synthetic biology tool. Here, we report the assignment of the codon to one for tryptophan and show that this can be used as an effective strategy for addressing a key problem in chloroplast engineering: namely, the assembly of expression cassettes in Escherichia coli when the gene product is toxic to the bacterium. This problem arises because the prokaryotic nature of chloroplast promoters and ribosome-binding sites used in such cassettes often results in transgene expression in E. coli, and is a potential issue when cloning genes for metabolic enzymes, antibacterial proteins and integral membrane proteins. We show that replacement of tryptophan codons with the spare codon (UGG→UGA) within a transgene prevents functional expression in E. coli and in the chloroplast, and that co-introduction of a plastidial trnW gene carrying a modified anticodon restores function only in the latter by allowing UGA readthrough. We demonstrate the utility of this system by expressing two genes known to be highly toxic to E. coli and discuss its value in providing an enhanced level of biocontainment for transplastomic microalgae. PMID:26471875

  20. Expression of Engineered Nuclear Male Sterility in Brassica napus (Genetics, Morphology, Cytology, and Sensitivity to Temperature).

    PubMed Central

    Denis, M.; Delourme, R.; Gourret, J. P.; Mariani, C.; Renard, M.

    1993-01-01

    A dominant genetic male sterility trait obtained through transformation in rapeseed (Brassica napus) was studied in the progenies of 11 transformed plants. The gene conferring the male sterility consists of a ribonuclease gene under the control of a tapetum-specific promoter. Two ribonuclease genes, RNase T1 and barnase, were used. The chimaeric ribonuclease gene was linked to the bialophos-resistance gene, which confers resistance to the herbicide phosphinotricine (PPT). The resistance to the herbicide was used as a dominant marker for the male sterility trait. The study presented here concerns three aspects of this engineered male sterility: genetics correlated with the segregation of the T-DNA in the progenies; expression of the male sterility in relation to the morphology and cytology of the androecium; and stability of the engineered male sterility under different culture conditions. Correct segregation, 50% male-sterile, PPT-resistant plants, and 50% male-fertile, susceptible plants were observed in the progeny of seven transformants. The most prominent morphological change in the male-sterile flowers was a noticeable reduction in the length of the stamen filament. The first disturbances of microsporogenesis were observed from the free microspore stage and were followed by a simultaneous degeneration of microspore and tapetal cell content. At anthesis, the sterile anthers contained only empty exines. In some cases, reversion to fertility of male-sterile plants has been observed. Both ribonuclease genes are susceptible to instability. Instability of the RNase T1-male sterility trait increased at temperatures higher than 25[deg] C. Our results do not allow us to confirm this observation for the barnase male-sterile plants. However, the male-sterile plants of the progeny of two independent RNase T1 transformants were stably male sterile under all conditions studied. PMID:12231785