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Sample records for human genetic variation

  1. Genetic variation and human longevity.

    PubMed

    Soerensen, Mette

    2012-05-01

    The overall aim of the PhD project was to elucidate the association of human longevity with genetic variation in major candidate genes and pathways of longevity. Based on a thorough literature and database search we chose to apply a pathway approach; to explore variation in genes composing the DNA damage signaling, DNA repair, GH/IGF-1/insulin signaling and pro-/antioxidant pathways. In addition, 16 genes which did not belong to the core of either pathway, however recurrently regarded as candidate genes of longevity (e.g. APOE), were included. In this way a total of 168 genes were selected for investigation. We decided to explore the genetic variation in the form of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), a highly investigated type of genetic variation. SNPs having potential functional impact (e.g. affecting binding of transcription factors) were identified, so were specific SNPs in the candidate genes previously published to be associated with human longevity. To cover the majority of the common genetic variation in the 168 gene regions (encoding regions plus 5,000 bp upstream and 1,000 downstream) we applied the tagging SNP approach via the HapMap Consortium. Consequently 1,536 SNPs were selected. The majority of the previous publications on genetic variation and human longevity had employed a case-control study design, e.g. comparing centenarians to middle-aged controls. This type of study design is somehow prone to bias introduced by for instance cohort effects, i.e. differences in characteristics of cases and controls, a kind of bias which is avoided when a prospective cohort is under study. Therefore, we chose to investigate 1,200 individuals of the Danish 1905 birth cohort, which have been followed since 1998 when the members were 92-93 years old. The genetic contribution to human longevity has been estimated to be most profound during the late part of life, thus these oldest-old individuals are excellent for investigating such effect. The follow-up survival

  2. A global reference for human genetic variation.

    PubMed

    Auton, Adam; Brooks, Lisa D; Durbin, Richard M; Garrison, Erik P; Kang, Hyun Min; Korbel, Jan O; Marchini, Jonathan L; McCarthy, Shane; McVean, Gil A; Abecasis, Gonçalo R

    2015-10-01

    The 1000 Genomes Project set out to provide a comprehensive description of common human genetic variation by applying whole-genome sequencing to a diverse set of individuals from multiple populations. Here we report completion of the project, having reconstructed the genomes of 2,504 individuals from 26 populations using a combination of low-coverage whole-genome sequencing, deep exome sequencing, and dense microarray genotyping. We characterized a broad spectrum of genetic variation, in total over 88 million variants (84.7 million single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), 3.6 million short insertions/deletions (indels), and 60,000 structural variants), all phased onto high-quality haplotypes. This resource includes >99% of SNP variants with a frequency of >1% for a variety of ancestries. We describe the distribution of genetic variation across the global sample, and discuss the implications for common disease studies. PMID:26432245

  3. A global reference for human genetic variation

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    The 1000 Genomes Project set out to provide a comprehensive description of common human genetic variation by applying whole-genome sequencing to a diverse set of individuals from multiple populations. Here we report completion of the project, having reconstructed the genomes of 2,504 individuals from 26 populations using a combination of low-coverage whole-genome sequencing, deep exome sequencing, and dense microarray genotyping. We characterized a broad spectrum of genetic variation, in total over 88 million variants (84.7 million single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), 3.6 million short insertions/deletions (indels), and 60,000 structural variants), all phased onto high-quality haplotypes. This resource includes >99% of SNP variants with a frequency of >1% for a variety of ancestries. We describe the distribution of genetic variation across the global sample, and discuss the implications for common disease studies. PMID:26432245

  4. Genetic variation and the de novo assembly of human genomes

    PubMed Central

    Chaisson, Mark J. P.; Wilson, Richard K.; Eichler, Evan E.

    2016-01-01

    The discovery of genetic variation and the assembly of genome sequences are both inextricably linked to advances in DNA-sequencing technology. Short-read massively parallel sequencing has revolutionized our ability to discover genetic variation but is insufficient to generate high-quality genome assemblies or resolve most structural variation. Full resolution of variation is only guaranteed by complete de novo assembly of a genome. Here, we review approaches to genome assembly, the nature of gaps or missing sequences, and biases in the assembly process. We describe the challenges of generating a complete de novo genome assembly using current technologies and the impact that being able to perfectly sequence the genome would have on understanding human disease and evolution. Finally, we summarize recent technological advances that improve both contiguity and accuracy and emphasize the importance of complete de novo assembly as opposed to read mapping as the primary means to understanding the full range of human genetic variation. PMID:26442640

  5. Gene Expression and Genetic Variation in Human Atria

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Honghuang; Dolmatova, Elena V.; Morley, Michael P.; Lunetta, Kathryn L.; McManus, David D.; Magnani, Jared W.; Margulies, Kenneth B.; Hakonarson, Hakon; del Monte, Federica; Benjamin, Emelia J.; Cappola, Thomas P.; Ellinor, Patrick T.

    2013-01-01

    Background The human left and right atria have different susceptibilities to develop atrial fibrillation (AF). However, the molecular events related to structural and functional changes that enhance AF susceptibility are still poorly understood. Objective To characterize gene expression and genetic variation in human atria. Methods We studied the gene expression profiles and genetic variations in 53 left atrial and 52 right atrial tissue samples collected from the Myocardial Applied Genomics Network (MAGNet) repository. The tissues were collected from heart failure patients undergoing transplantation and from unused organ donor hearts with normal ventricular function. Gene expression was profiled using the Affymetrix GeneChip Human Genome U133A Array. Genetic variation was profiled using the Affymetrix Genome-Wide Human SNP Array 6.0. Results We found that 109 genes were differentially expressed between left and right atrial tissues. A total of 187 and 259 significant cis-associations between transcript levels and genetic variants were identified in left and right atrial tissues, respectively. We also found that a SNP at a known AF locus, rs3740293, was associated with the expression of MYOZ1 in both left and right atrial tissues. Conclusion We found a distinct transcriptional profile between the right and left atrium, and extensive cis-associations between atrial transcripts and common genetic variants. Our results implicate MYOZ1 as the causative gene at the chromosome 10q22 locus for AF. PMID:24177373

  6. Genetics of the dentofacial variation in human malocclusion

    PubMed Central

    Moreno Uribe, L. M.; Miller, S. F.

    2015-01-01

    Malocclusions affect individuals worldwide, resulting in compromised function and esthetics. Understanding the etiological factors contributing to the variation in dentofacial morphology associated with malocclusions is the key to develop novel treatment approaches. Advances in dentofacial phenotyping, which is the comprehensive characterization of hard and soft tissue variation in the craniofacial complex, together with the acquisition of large-scale genomic data have started to unravel genetic mechanisms underlying facial variation. Knowledge on the genetics of human malocclusion is limited even though results attained thus far are encouraging, with promising opportunities for future research. This review summarizes the most common dentofacial variations associated with malocclusions and reviews the current knowledge of the roles of genes in the development of malocclusions. Lastly, this review will describe ways to advance malocclusion research, following examples from the expanding fields of phenomics and genomic medicine, which aim to better patient outcomes. PMID:25865537

  7. The Evolution of Human Genetic and Phenotypic Variation in Africa

    PubMed Central

    Campbell, Michael C.

    2010-01-01

    Africa is the birthplace of modern humans, and is the source of the geographic expansion of ancestral populations into other regions of the world. Indigenous Africans are characterized by high levels of genetic diversity within and between populations. The pattern of genetic variation in these populations has been shaped by demographic events occurring over the last 200,000 years. The dramatic variation in climate, diet, and exposure to infectious disease across the continent has also resulted in novel genetic and phenotypic adaptations in extant Africans. This review summarizes some recent advances in our understanding of the demographic history and selective pressures that have influenced levels and patterns of diversity in African populations. PMID:20178763

  8. Human genetic variation database, a reference database of genetic variations in the Japanese population

    PubMed Central

    Higasa, Koichiro; Miyake, Noriko; Yoshimura, Jun; Okamura, Kohji; Niihori, Tetsuya; Saitsu, Hirotomo; Doi, Koichiro; Shimizu, Masakazu; Nakabayashi, Kazuhiko; Aoki, Yoko; Tsurusaki, Yoshinori; Morishita, Shinichi; Kawaguchi, Takahisa; Migita, Osuke; Nakayama, Keiko; Nakashima, Mitsuko; Mitsui, Jun; Narahara, Maiko; Hayashi, Keiko; Funayama, Ryo; Yamaguchi, Daisuke; Ishiura, Hiroyuki; Ko, Wen-Ya; Hata, Kenichiro; Nagashima, Takeshi; Yamada, Ryo; Matsubara, Yoichi; Umezawa, Akihiro; Tsuji, Shoji; Matsumoto, Naomichi; Matsuda, Fumihiko

    2016-01-01

    Whole-genome and -exome resequencing using next-generation sequencers is a powerful approach for identifying genomic variations that are associated with diseases. However, systematic strategies for prioritizing causative variants from many candidates to explain the disease phenotype are still far from being established, because the population-specific frequency spectrum of genetic variation has not been characterized. Here, we have collected exomic genetic variation from 1208 Japanese individuals through a collaborative effort, and aggregated the data into a prevailing catalog. In total, we identified 156 622 previously unreported variants. The allele frequencies for the majority (88.8%) were lower than 0.5% in allele frequency and predicted to be functionally deleterious. In addition, we have constructed a Japanese-specific major allele reference genome by which the number of unique mapping of the short reads in our data has increased 0.045% on average. Our results illustrate the importance of constructing an ethnicity-specific reference genome for identifying rare variants. All the collected data were centralized to a newly developed database to serve as useful resources for exploring pathogenic variations. Public access to the database is available at http://www.genome.med.kyoto-u.ac.jp/SnpDB/. PMID:26911352

  9. GENETIC ASSOCIATION ANALYSIS OF COPY NUMBER VARIATION (CNVs) IN HUMAN DISEASE PATHOGENESIS

    PubMed Central

    Ionita-Laza, Iuliana; Rogers, Angela J.; Lange, Christoph; Raby, Benjamin A.; Lee, Charles

    2009-01-01

    Structural genetic variation, including copy number variation (CNV), constitutes a substantial fraction of total genetic variability and the importance of structural genetic variants in modulating human disease is increasingly being recognized. Early successes in identifying disease-associated CNVs via a candidate gene approach mandate that future disease association studies need to include structural genetic variation. Such analyses should not rely on previously developed methodologies that were designed to evaluate single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). Instead, development of novel technical, statistical, and epidemiologic methods will be necessary to optimally capture this newly-appreciated form of genetic variation in a meaningful manner. PMID:18822366

  10. Genetics in endocrinology: genetic variation in deiodinases: a systematic review of potential clinical effects in humans.

    PubMed

    Verloop, Herman; Dekkers, Olaf M; Peeters, Robin P; Schoones, Jan W; Smit, Johannes W A

    2014-09-01

    Iodothyronine deiodinases represent a family of selenoproteins involved in peripheral and local homeostasis of thyroid hormone action. Deiodinases are expressed in multiple organs and thyroid hormone affects numerous biological systems, thus genetic variation in deiodinases may affect multiple clinical endpoints. Interest in clinical effects of genetic variation in deiodinases has clearly increased. We aimed to provide an overview for the role of deiodinase polymorphisms in human physiology and morbidity. In this systematic review, studies evaluating the relationship between deiodinase polymorphisms and clinical parameters in humans were eligible. No restrictions on publication date were imposed. The following databases were searched up to August 2013: Pubmed, EMBASE (OVID-version), Web of Science, COCHRANE Library, CINAHL (EbscoHOST-version), Academic Search Premier (EbscoHOST-version), and ScienceDirect. Deiodinase physiology at molecular and tissue level is described, and finally the role of these polymorphisms in pathophysiological conditions is reviewed. Deiodinase type 1 (D1) polymorphisms particularly show moderate-to-strong relationships with thyroid hormone parameters, IGF1 production, and risk for depression. D2 variants correlate with thyroid hormone levels, insulin resistance, bipolar mood disorder, psychological well-being, mental retardation, hypertension, and risk for osteoarthritis. D3 polymorphisms showed no relationship with inter-individual variation in serum thyroid hormone parameters. One D3 polymorphism was associated with risk for osteoarthritis. Genetic deiodinase profiles only explain a small proportion of inter-individual variations in serum thyroid hormone levels. Evidence suggests a role of genetic deiodinase variants in certain pathophysiological conditions. The value for determination of deiodinase polymorphism in clinical practice needs further investigation. PMID:24878678

  11. Beyond race: towards a whole-genome perspective on human populations and genetic variation.

    PubMed

    Foster, Morris W; Sharp, Richard R

    2004-10-01

    The renewed emphasis on population-specific genetic variation, exemplified most prominently by the International HapMap Project, is complicated by a longstanding, uncritical reliance on existing population categories in genetic research. Race and other pre-existing population definitions (ethnicity, religion, language, nationality, culture and so on) tend to be contentious concepts that have polarized discussions about the ethics and science of research into population-specific human genetic variation. By contrast, a broader consideration of the multiple historical sources of genetic variation provides a whole-genome perspective on the ways i n which existing population definitions do, and do not, account for how genetic variation is distributed among individuals. Although genetics will continue to rely on analytical tools that make use of particular population histories, it is important to interpret findings in a broader genomic context. PMID:15510170

  12. Genetic Variation and Adaptation in Africa: Implications for Human Evolution and Disease

    PubMed Central

    Gomez, Felicia; Hirbo, Jibril; Tishkoff, Sarah A.

    2014-01-01

    Because modern humans originated in Africa and have adapted to diverse environments, African populations have high levels of genetic and phenotypic diversity. Thus, genomic studies of diverse African ethnic groups are essential for understanding human evolutionary history and how this leads to differential disease risk in all humans. Comparative studies of genetic diversity within and between African ethnic groups creates an opportunity to reconstruct some of the earliest events in human population history and are useful for identifying patterns of genetic variation that have been influenced by recent natural selection. Here we describe what is currently known about genetic variation and evolutionary history of diverse African ethnic groups. We also describe examples of recent natural selection in African genomes and how these data are informative for understanding the frequency of many genetic traits, including those that cause disease susceptibility in African populations and populations of recent African descent. PMID:24984772

  13. Interpreting noncoding genetic variation in complex traits and human disease.

    PubMed

    Ward, Lucas D; Kellis, Manolis

    2012-11-01

    Association studies provide genome-wide information about the genetic basis of complex disease, but medical research has focused primarily on protein-coding variants, owing to the difficulty of interpreting noncoding mutations. This picture has changed with advances in the systematic annotation of functional noncoding elements. Evolutionary conservation, functional genomics, chromatin state, sequence motifs and molecular quantitative trait loci all provide complementary information about the function of noncoding sequences. These functional maps can help with prioritizing variants on risk haplotypes, filtering mutations encountered in the clinic and performing systems-level analyses to reveal processes underlying disease associations. Advances in predictive modeling can enable data-set integration to reveal pathways shared across loci and alleles, and richer regulatory models can guide the search for epistatic interactions. Lastly, new massively parallel reporter experiments can systematically validate regulatory predictions. Ultimately, advances in regulatory and systems genomics can help unleash the value of whole-genome sequencing for personalized genomic risk assessment, diagnosis and treatment. PMID:23138309

  14. Genetic Mechanism of Human Neutrophil Antigen 2 Deficiency and Expression Variations

    PubMed Central

    Li, Yunfang; Mair, David C.; Schuller, Randy M.; Li, Ling; Wu, Jianming

    2015-01-01

    Human neutrophil antigen 2 (HNA-2) deficiency is a common phenotype as 3–5% humans do not express HNA-2. HNA-2 is coded by CD177 gene that associates with human myeloproliferative disorders. HNA-2 deficient individuals are prone to produce HNA-2 alloantibodies that cause a number of disorders including transfusion-related acute lung injury and immune neutropenia. In addition, the percentages of HNA-2 positive neutrophils vary significantly among individuals and HNA-2 expression variations play a role in human diseases such as myelodysplastic syndrome, chronic myelogenous leukemia, and gastric cancer. The underlying genetic mechanism of HNA-2 deficiency and expression variations has remained a mystery. In this study, we identified a novel CD177 nonsense single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP 829A>T) that creates a stop codon within the CD177 coding region. We found that all 829TT homozygous individuals were HNA-2 deficient. In addition, the SNP 829A>T genotypes were significantly associated with the percentage of HNA-2 positive neutrophils. Transfection experiments confirmed that HNA-2 expression was absent on cells expressing the CD177 SNP 829T allele. Our data clearly demonstrate that the CD177 SNP 829A>T is the primary genetic determinant for HNA-2 deficiency and expression variations. The mechanistic delineation of HNA-2 genetics will enable the development of genetic tests for diagnosis and prognosis of HNA-2-related human diseases. PMID:26024230

  15. Genetic variation in lipid desaturases and its impact on the development of human disease

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Perturbations in lipid metabolism characterize many of the chronic diseases currently plaguing our society, such as obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. Thus interventions that target plasma lipid levels remain a primary goal to manage these diseases. The determinants of plasma lipid levels are multi-factorial, consisting of both genetic and lifestyle components. Recent evidence indicates that fatty acid desaturases have an important role in defining plasma and tissue lipid profiles. This review will highlight the current state-of-knowledge regarding three desaturases (Scd-1, Fads1 and Fads2) and their potential roles in disease onset and development. Although research in rodent models has provided invaluable insight into the regulation and functions of these desaturases, the extent to which murine research can be translated to humans remains unclear. Evidence emerging from human-based research demonstrates that genetic variation in human desaturase genes affects enzyme activity and, consequently, disease risk factors. Moreover, this genetic variation may have a trans-generational effect via breastfeeding. Therefore inter-individual variation in desaturase function is attributed to both genetic and lifestyle components. As such, population-based research regarding the role of desaturases on disease risk is challenged by this complex gene-lifestyle paradigm. Unravelling the contribution of each component is paramount for understanding the inter-individual variation that exists in plasma lipid profiles, and will provide crucial information to develop personalized strategies to improve health management. PMID:20565855

  16. A comparison of worldwide phonemic and genetic variation in human populations

    PubMed Central

    Creanza, Nicole; Ruhlen, Merritt; Pemberton, Trevor J.; Rosenberg, Noah A.; Feldman, Marcus W.; Ramachandran, Sohini

    2015-01-01

    Worldwide patterns of genetic variation are driven by human demographic history. Here, we test whether this demographic history has left similar signatures on phonemes—sound units that distinguish meaning between words in languages—to those it has left on genes. We analyze, jointly and in parallel, phoneme inventories from 2,082 worldwide languages and microsatellite polymorphisms from 246 worldwide populations. On a global scale, both genetic distance and phonemic distance between populations are significantly correlated with geographic distance. Geographically close language pairs share significantly more phonemes than distant language pairs, whether or not the languages are closely related. The regional geographic axes of greatest phonemic differentiation correspond to axes of genetic differentiation, suggesting that there is a relationship between human dispersal and linguistic variation. However, the geographic distribution of phoneme inventory sizes does not follow the predictions of a serial founder effect during human expansion out of Africa. Furthermore, although geographically isolated populations lose genetic diversity via genetic drift, phonemes are not subject to drift in the same way: within a given geographic radius, languages that are relatively isolated exhibit more variance in number of phonemes than languages with many neighbors. This finding suggests that relatively isolated languages are more susceptible to phonemic change than languages with many neighbors. Within a language family, phoneme evolution along genetic, geographic, or cognate-based linguistic trees predicts similar ancestral phoneme states to those predicted from ancient sources. More genetic sampling could further elucidate the relative roles of vertical and horizontal transmission in phoneme evolution. PMID:25605893

  17. Inter-chromosomal variation in the pattern of human population genetic structure.

    PubMed

    Baye, Tesfaye M

    2011-05-01

    Emerging technologies now make it possible to genotype hundreds of thousands of genetic variations in individuals, across the genome. The study of loci at finer scales will facilitate the understanding of genetic variation at genomic and geographic levels. We examined global and chromosomal variations across HapMap populations using 3.7 million single nucleotide polymorphisms to search for the most stratified genomic regions of human populations and linked these regions to ontological annotation and functional network analysis. To achieve this, we used five complementary statistical and genetic network procedures: principal component (PC), cluster, discriminant, fixation index (FST) and network/pathway analyses. At the global level, the first two PC scores were sufficient to account for major population structure; however, chromosomal level analysis detected subtle forms of population structure within continental populations, and as many as 31 PCs were required to classify individuals into homogeneous groups. Using recommended population ancestry differentiation measures, a total of 126 regions of the genome were catalogued. Gene ontology and networks analyses revealed that these regions included the genes encoding oculocutaneous albinism II (OCA2), hect domain and RLD 2 (HERC2), ectodysplasin A receptor (EDAR) and solute carrier family 45, member 2 (SLC45A2). These genes are associated with melanin production, which is involved in the development of skin and hair colour, skin cancer and eye pigmentation. We also identified the genes encoding interferon-γ (IFNG) and death-associated protein kinase 1 (DAPK1), which are associated with cell death, inflammatory and immunological diseases. An in-depth understanding of these genomic regions may help to explain variations in adaptation to different environments. Our approach offers a comprehensive strategy for analysing chromosome-based population structure and differentiation, and demonstrates the application of

  18. Genetic and environmental factors associated with variation of human xenobiotic glucuronidation and sulfation.

    PubMed Central

    Burchell, B; Coughtrie, M W

    1997-01-01

    Glucuronidation and sulfation are phase 2 metabolic reactions catalyzed by large families of different isoenzymes in man. The textbook view that glucuronidation and sulfation lead to the production of harmless conjugates for simple excretion is not valid. Biologically active and toxic sulfates and glucuronides are produced and leed to adverse drug reactions, including immune hypersensitivity. Considerable variation in xenobiotic conjugation is observed as a result of altered expression of UDP-glucuronosyltransferases (UGTs) and sulfotransferases (STs). Recent cloning and expression of human cDNA encoding UGTs and STs has facilitated characterization of isoform substrate specificity, which has been further validated using specific antibodies and human tissue fractions. The availability of cloned/expressed human enzymes and specific antibodies has enabled the investigation of xenobiotic induction and metabolic disruption leeding to adverse responses. Genetic polymorphisms of glucuronidation and sulfation are known to exist although the characterization and assessment of the importance of these variations are hampered by appropriate ethical studies in men with suitable safe model compounds. Genetic analysis has allowed molecular identification of defects in well-known hyperbilirubinemias. However, full characterization of the specific functional roles of human UGTs and STs requires rigorous kinetic and molecular analyses of the role of each enzyme in vivo through the use of specific antibodies and inhibitors. This will leed to the better prediction of variation of xenobiotic glucuronidation and sulfation in man. PMID:9255555

  19. Common Genetic Variation and the Control of HIV-1 in Humans

    PubMed Central

    Shianna, Kevin V.; Colombo, Sara; Ledergerber, Bruno; Cirulli, Elizabeth T.; Urban, Thomas J.; Zhang, Kunlin; Gumbs, Curtis E.; Smith, Jason P.; Castagna, Antonella; Cozzi-Lepri, Alessandro; De Luca, Andrea; Easterbrook, Philippa; Günthard, Huldrych F.; Mallal, Simon; Mussini, Cristina; Dalmau, Judith; Martinez-Picado, Javier; Miro, José M.; Obel, Niels; Wolinsky, Steven M.; Martinson, Jeremy J.; Detels, Roger; Margolick, Joseph B.; Jacobson, Lisa P.; Descombes, Patrick; Antonarakis, Stylianos E.; Beckmann, Jacques S.; O'Brien, Stephen J.; Letvin, Norman L.; McMichael, Andrew J.; Haynes, Barton F.; Carrington, Mary; Feng, Sheng; Telenti, Amalio; Goldstein, David B.

    2009-01-01

    To extend the understanding of host genetic determinants of HIV-1 control, we performed a genome-wide association study in a cohort of 2,554 infected Caucasian subjects. The study was powered to detect common genetic variants explaining down to 1.3% of the variability in viral load at set point. We provide overwhelming confirmation of three associations previously reported in a genome-wide study and show further independent effects of both common and rare variants in the Major Histocompatibility Complex region (MHC). We also examined the polymorphisms reported in previous candidate gene studies and fail to support a role for any variant outside of the MHC or the chemokine receptor cluster on chromosome 3. In addition, we evaluated functional variants, copy-number polymorphisms, epistatic interactions, and biological pathways. This study thus represents a comprehensive assessment of common human genetic variation in HIV-1 control in Caucasians. PMID:20041166

  20. Impact of human management on the genetic variation of wild pepper, Capsicum annuum var. glabriusculum.

    PubMed

    González-Jara, Pablo; Moreno-Letelier, Alejandra; Fraile, Aurora; Piñero, Daniel; García-Arenal, Fernando

    2011-01-01

    Management of wild peppers in Mexico has occurred for a long time without clear phenotypic signs of domestication. However, pre-domestication management could have implications for the population's genetic richness. To test this hypothesis we analysed 27 wild (W), let standing (LS) and cultivated (C) populations, plus 7 samples from local markets (LM), with nine polymorphic microsatellite markers. Two hundred and fifty two alleles were identified, averaging 28 per locus. Allele number was higher in W, and 15 and 40% less in LS and C populations, respectively. Genetic variation had a significant population structure. In W populations, structure was associated with ecological and geographic areas according to isolation by distance. When LM and C populations where included in the analysis, differentiation was no longer apparent. Most LM were related to distant populations from Sierra Madre Oriental, which represents their probable origin. Historical demography shows a recent decline in all W populations. Thus, pre-domestication human management is associated with a significant reduction of genetic diversity and with a loss of differentiation suggesting movement among regions by man. Measures to conserve wild and managed populations should be implemented to maintain the source and the architecture of genetic variation in this important crop relative. PMID:22163053

  1. Genetic variation in MAOA modulates ventromedial prefrontal circuitry mediating individual differences in human personality.

    PubMed

    Buckholtz, J W; Callicott, J H; Kolachana, B; Hariri, A R; Goldberg, T E; Genderson, M; Egan, M F; Mattay, V S; Weinberger, D R; Meyer-Lindenberg, A

    2008-03-01

    Little is known about neural mechanisms underlying human personality and temperament, despite their considerable importance as highly heritable risk mediators for somatic and psychiatric disorders. To identify these circuits, we used a combined genetic and imaging approach focused on Monoamine Oxidase A (MAOA), encoding a key enzyme for monoamine metabolism previously associated with temperament and antisocial behavior. Male carriers of a low-expressing genetic variant exhibited dysregulated amygdala activation and increased functional coupling with ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC). Stronger coupling predicted increased harm avoidance and decreased reward dependence scores, suggesting that this circuitry mediates a part of the association of MAOA with these traits. We utilized path analysis to parse the effective connectivity within this system, and provide evidence that vmPFC regulates amygdala indirectly by influencing rostral cingulate cortex function. Our data implicate a neural circuit for variation in human personality under genetic control, provide an anatomically consistent mechanism for vmPFC-amygdala interactions underlying this variation, and suggest a role for vmPFC as a superordinate regulatory area for emotional arousal and social behavior. PMID:17519928

  2. Population genetic inference from personal genome data: impact of ancestry and admixture on human genomic variation.

    PubMed

    Kidd, Jeffrey M; Gravel, Simon; Byrnes, Jake; Moreno-Estrada, Andres; Musharoff, Shaila; Bryc, Katarzyna; Degenhardt, Jeremiah D; Brisbin, Abra; Sheth, Vrunda; Chen, Rong; McLaughlin, Stephen F; Peckham, Heather E; Omberg, Larsson; Bormann Chung, Christina A; Stanley, Sarah; Pearlstein, Kevin; Levandowsky, Elizabeth; Acevedo-Acevedo, Suehelay; Auton, Adam; Keinan, Alon; Acuña-Alonzo, Victor; Barquera-Lozano, Rodrigo; Canizales-Quinteros, Samuel; Eng, Celeste; Burchard, Esteban G; Russell, Archie; Reynolds, Andy; Clark, Andrew G; Reese, Martin G; Lincoln, Stephen E; Butte, Atul J; De La Vega, Francisco M; Bustamante, Carlos D

    2012-10-01

    Full sequencing of individual human genomes has greatly expanded our understanding of human genetic variation and population history. Here, we present a systematic analysis of 50 human genomes from 11 diverse global populations sequenced at high coverage. Our sample includes 12 individuals who have admixed ancestry and who have varying degrees of recent (within the last 500 years) African, Native American, and European ancestry. We found over 21 million single-nucleotide variants that contribute to a 1.75-fold range in nucleotide heterozygosity across diverse human genomes. This heterozygosity ranged from a high of one heterozygous site per kilobase in west African genomes to a low of 0.57 heterozygous sites per kilobase in segments inferred to have diploid Native American ancestry from the genomes of Mexican and Puerto Rican individuals. We show evidence of all three continental ancestries in the genomes of Mexican, Puerto Rican, and African American populations, and the genome-wide statistics are highly consistent across individuals from a population once ancestry proportions have been accounted for. Using a generalized linear model, we identified subtle variations across populations in the proportion of neutral versus deleterious variation and found that genome-wide statistics vary in admixed populations even once ancestry proportions have been factored in. We further infer that multiple periods of gene flow shaped the diversity of admixed populations in the Americas-70% of the European ancestry in today's African Americans dates back to European gene flow happening only 7-8 generations ago. PMID:23040495

  3. Population Genetic Inference from Personal Genome Data: Impact of Ancestry and Admixture on Human Genomic Variation

    PubMed Central

    Kidd, Jeffrey M.; Gravel, Simon; Byrnes, Jake; Moreno-Estrada, Andres; Musharoff, Shaila; Bryc, Katarzyna; Degenhardt, Jeremiah D.; Brisbin, Abra; Sheth, Vrunda; Chen, Rong; McLaughlin, Stephen F.; Peckham, Heather E.; Omberg, Larsson; Bormann Chung, Christina A.; Stanley, Sarah; Pearlstein, Kevin; Levandowsky, Elizabeth; Acevedo-Acevedo, Suehelay; Auton, Adam; Keinan, Alon; Acuña-Alonzo, Victor; Barquera-Lozano, Rodrigo; Canizales-Quinteros, Samuel; Eng, Celeste; Burchard, Esteban G.; Russell, Archie; Reynolds, Andy; Clark, Andrew G.; Reese, Martin G.; Lincoln, Stephen E.; Butte, Atul J.; De La Vega, Francisco M.; Bustamante, Carlos D.

    2012-01-01

    Full sequencing of individual human genomes has greatly expanded our understanding of human genetic variation and population history. Here, we present a systematic analysis of 50 human genomes from 11 diverse global populations sequenced at high coverage. Our sample includes 12 individuals who have admixed ancestry and who have varying degrees of recent (within the last 500 years) African, Native American, and European ancestry. We found over 21 million single-nucleotide variants that contribute to a 1.75-fold range in nucleotide heterozygosity across diverse human genomes. This heterozygosity ranged from a high of one heterozygous site per kilobase in west African genomes to a low of 0.57 heterozygous sites per kilobase in segments inferred to have diploid Native American ancestry from the genomes of Mexican and Puerto Rican individuals. We show evidence of all three continental ancestries in the genomes of Mexican, Puerto Rican, and African American populations, and the genome-wide statistics are highly consistent across individuals from a population once ancestry proportions have been accounted for. Using a generalized linear model, we identified subtle variations across populations in the proportion of neutral versus deleterious variation and found that genome-wide statistics vary in admixed populations even once ancestry proportions have been factored in. We further infer that multiple periods of gene flow shaped the diversity of admixed populations in the Americas—70% of the European ancestry in today’s African Americans dates back to European gene flow happening only 7–8 generations ago. PMID:23040495

  4. Human metabolic profiles are stably controlled by genetic and environmental variation.

    PubMed

    Nicholson, George; Rantalainen, Mattias; Maher, Anthony D; Li, Jia V; Malmodin, Daniel; Ahmadi, Kourosh R; Faber, Johan H; Hallgrímsdóttir, Ingileif B; Barrett, Amy; Toft, Henrik; Krestyaninova, Maria; Viksna, Juris; Neogi, Sudeshna Guha; Dumas, Marc-Emmanuel; Sarkans, Ugis; The Molpage Consortium; Silverman, Bernard W; Donnelly, Peter; Nicholson, Jeremy K; Allen, Maxine; Zondervan, Krina T; Lindon, John C; Spector, Tim D; McCarthy, Mark I; Holmes, Elaine; Baunsgaard, Dorrit; Holmes, Chris C

    2011-01-01

    ¹H Nuclear Magnetic Resonance spectroscopy (¹H NMR) is increasingly used to measure metabolite concentrations in sets of biological samples for top-down systems biology and molecular epidemiology. For such purposes, knowledge of the sources of human variation in metabolite concentrations is valuable, but currently sparse. We conducted and analysed a study to create such a resource. In our unique design, identical and non-identical twin pairs donated plasma and urine samples longitudinally. We acquired ¹H NMR spectra on the samples, and statistically decomposed variation in metabolite concentration into familial (genetic and common-environmental), individual-environmental, and longitudinally unstable components. We estimate that stable variation, comprising familial and individual-environmental factors, accounts on average for 60% (plasma) and 47% (urine) of biological variation in ¹H NMR-detectable metabolite concentrations. Clinically predictive metabolic variation is likely nested within this stable component, so our results have implications for the effective design of biomarker-discovery studies. We provide a power-calculation method which reveals that sample sizes of a few thousand should offer sufficient statistical precision to detect ¹H NMR-based biomarkers quantifying predisposition to disease. PMID:21878913

  5. Analysis of protein-coding genetic variation in 60,706 humans.

    PubMed

    Lek, Monkol; Karczewski, Konrad J; Minikel, Eric V; Samocha, Kaitlin E; Banks, Eric; Fennell, Timothy; O'Donnell-Luria, Anne H; Ware, James S; Hill, Andrew J; Cummings, Beryl B; Tukiainen, Taru; Birnbaum, Daniel P; Kosmicki, Jack A; Duncan, Laramie E; Estrada, Karol; Zhao, Fengmei; Zou, James; Pierce-Hoffman, Emma; Berghout, Joanne; Cooper, David N; Deflaux, Nicole; DePristo, Mark; Do, Ron; Flannick, Jason; Fromer, Menachem; Gauthier, Laura; Goldstein, Jackie; Gupta, Namrata; Howrigan, Daniel; Kiezun, Adam; Kurki, Mitja I; Moonshine, Ami Levy; Natarajan, Pradeep; Orozco, Lorena; Peloso, Gina M; Poplin, Ryan; Rivas, Manuel A; Ruano-Rubio, Valentin; Rose, Samuel A; Ruderfer, Douglas M; Shakir, Khalid; Stenson, Peter D; Stevens, Christine; Thomas, Brett P; Tiao, Grace; Tusie-Luna, Maria T; Weisburd, Ben; Won, Hong-Hee; Yu, Dongmei; Altshuler, David M; Ardissino, Diego; Boehnke, Michael; Danesh, John; Donnelly, Stacey; Elosua, Roberto; Florez, Jose C; Gabriel, Stacey B; Getz, Gad; Glatt, Stephen J; Hultman, Christina M; Kathiresan, Sekar; Laakso, Markku; McCarroll, Steven; McCarthy, Mark I; McGovern, Dermot; McPherson, Ruth; Neale, Benjamin M; Palotie, Aarno; Purcell, Shaun M; Saleheen, Danish; Scharf, Jeremiah M; Sklar, Pamela; Sullivan, Patrick F; Tuomilehto, Jaakko; Tsuang, Ming T; Watkins, Hugh C; Wilson, James G; Daly, Mark J; MacArthur, Daniel G

    2016-08-18

    Large-scale reference data sets of human genetic variation are critical for the medical and functional interpretation of DNA sequence changes. Here we describe the aggregation and analysis of high-quality exome (protein-coding region) DNA sequence data for 60,706 individuals of diverse ancestries generated as part of the Exome Aggregation Consortium (ExAC). This catalogue of human genetic diversity contains an average of one variant every eight bases of the exome, and provides direct evidence for the presence of widespread mutational recurrence. We have used this catalogue to calculate objective metrics of pathogenicity for sequence variants, and to identify genes subject to strong selection against various classes of mutation; identifying 3,230 genes with near-complete depletion of predicted protein-truncating variants, with 72% of these genes having no currently established human disease phenotype. Finally, we demonstrate that these data can be used for the efficient filtering of candidate disease-causing variants, and for the discovery of human 'knockout' variants in protein-coding genes. PMID:27535533

  6. An integrated map of genetic variation from 1,092 human genomes

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Summary Through characterising the geographic and functional spectrum of human genetic variation, the 1000 Genomes Project aims to build a resource to help understand the genetic contribution to disease. We describe the genomes of 1,092 individuals from 14 populations, constructed using a combination of low-coverage whole-genome and exome sequencing. By developing methodologies to integrate information across multiple algorithms and diverse data sources we provide a validated haplotype map of 38 million SNPs, 1.4 million indels and over 14 thousand larger deletions. We show that individuals from different populations carry different profiles of rare and common variants and that low-frequency variants show substantial geographic differentiation, which is further increased by the action of purifying selection. We show that evolutionary conservation and coding consequence are key determinants of the strength of purifying selection, that rare-variant load varies substantially across biological pathways and that each individual harbours hundreds of rare non-coding variants at conserved sites, such as transcription-factor-motif disrupting changes. This resource, which captures up to 98% of accessible SNPs at a frequency of 1% in populations of medical genetics focus, enables analysis of common and low-frequency variants in individuals from diverse, including admixed, populations. PMID:23128226

  7. An integrated map of genetic variation from 1,092 human genomes.

    PubMed

    Abecasis, Goncalo R; Auton, Adam; Brooks, Lisa D; DePristo, Mark A; Durbin, Richard M; Handsaker, Robert E; Kang, Hyun Min; Marth, Gabor T; McVean, Gil A

    2012-11-01

    By characterizing the geographic and functional spectrum of human genetic variation, the 1000 Genomes Project aims to build a resource to help to understand the genetic contribution to disease. Here we describe the genomes of 1,092 individuals from 14 populations, constructed using a combination of low-coverage whole-genome and exome sequencing. By developing methods to integrate information across several algorithms and diverse data sources, we provide a validated haplotype map of 38 million single nucleotide polymorphisms, 1.4 million short insertions and deletions, and more than 14,000 larger deletions. We show that individuals from different populations carry different profiles of rare and common variants, and that low-frequency variants show substantial geographic differentiation, which is further increased by the action of purifying selection. We show that evolutionary conservation and coding consequence are key determinants of the strength of purifying selection, that rare-variant load varies substantially across biological pathways, and that each individual contains hundreds of rare non-coding variants at conserved sites, such as motif-disrupting changes in transcription-factor-binding sites. This resource, which captures up to 98% of accessible single nucleotide polymorphisms at a frequency of 1% in related populations, enables analysis of common and low-frequency variants in individuals from diverse, including admixed, populations. PMID:23128226

  8. Intersection of population variation and autoimmunity genetics in human T cell activation.

    PubMed

    Ye, Chun Jimmie; Feng, Ting; Kwon, Ho-Keun; Raj, Towfique; Wilson, Michael T; Asinovski, Natasha; McCabe, Cristin; Lee, Michelle H; Frohlich, Irene; Paik, Hyun-il; Zaitlen, Noah; Hacohen, Nir; Stranger, Barbara; De Jager, Philip; Mathis, Diane; Regev, Aviv; Benoist, Christophe

    2014-09-12

    T lymphocyte activation by antigen conditions adaptive immune responses and immunopathologies, but we know little about its variation in humans and its genetic or environmental roots. We analyzed gene expression in CD4(+) T cells during unbiased activation or in T helper 17 (T(H)17) conditions from 348 healthy participants representing European, Asian, and African ancestries. We observed interindividual variability, most marked for cytokine transcripts, with clear biases on the basis of ancestry, and following patterns more complex than simple T(H)1/2/17 partitions. We identified 39 genetic loci specifically associated in cis with activated gene expression. We further fine-mapped and validated a single-base variant that modulates YY1 binding and the activity of an enhancer element controlling the autoimmune-associated IL2RA gene, affecting its activity in activated but not regulatory T cells. Thus, interindividual variability affects the fundamental immunologic process of T helper activation, with important connections to autoimmune disease. PMID:25214635

  9. Genetic variation of the RASGRF1 regulatory region affects human hippocampus-dependent memory

    PubMed Central

    Barman, Adriana; Assmann, Anne; Richter, Sylvia; Soch, Joram; Schütze, Hartmut; Wüstenberg, Torsten; Deibele, Anna; Klein, Marieke; Richter, Anni; Behnisch, Gusalija; Düzel, Emrah; Zenker, Martin; Seidenbecher, Constanze I.; Schott, Björn H.

    2014-01-01

    The guanine nucleotide exchange factor RASGRF1 is an important regulator of intracellular signaling and neural plasticity in the brain. RASGRF1-deficient mice exhibit a complex phenotype with learning deficits and ocular abnormalities. Also in humans, a genome-wide association study has identified the single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) rs8027411 in the putative transcription regulatory region of RASGRF1 as a risk variant of myopia. Here we aimed to assess whether, in line with the RASGRF1 knockout mouse phenotype, rs8027411 might also be associated with human memory function. We performed computer-based neuropsychological learning experiments in two independent cohorts of young, healthy participants. Tests included the Verbal Learning and Memory Test (VLMT) and the logical memory section of the Wechsler Memory Scale (WMS). Two sub-cohorts additionally participated in functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies of hippocampus function. 119 participants performed a novelty encoding task that had previously been shown to engage the hippocampus, and 63 subjects participated in a reward-related memory encoding study. RASGRF1 rs8027411 genotype was indeed associated with memory performance in an allele dosage-dependent manner, with carriers of the T allele (i.e., the myopia risk allele) showing better memory performance in the early encoding phase of the VLMT and in the recall phase of the WMS logical memory section. In fMRI, T allele carriers exhibited increased hippocampal activation during presentation of novel images and during encoding of pictures associated with monetary reward. Taken together, our results provide evidence for a role of the RASGRF1 gene locus in hippocampus-dependent memory and, along with the previous association with myopia, point toward pleitropic effects of RASGRF1 genetic variations on complex neural function in humans. PMID:24808846

  10. Genetic variation of the RASGRF1 regulatory region affects human hippocampus-dependent memory.

    PubMed

    Barman, Adriana; Assmann, Anne; Richter, Sylvia; Soch, Joram; Schütze, Hartmut; Wüstenberg, Torsten; Deibele, Anna; Klein, Marieke; Richter, Anni; Behnisch, Gusalija; Düzel, Emrah; Zenker, Martin; Seidenbecher, Constanze I; Schott, Björn H

    2014-01-01

    The guanine nucleotide exchange factor RASGRF1 is an important regulator of intracellular signaling and neural plasticity in the brain. RASGRF1-deficient mice exhibit a complex phenotype with learning deficits and ocular abnormalities. Also in humans, a genome-wide association study has identified the single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) rs8027411 in the putative transcription regulatory region of RASGRF1 as a risk variant of myopia. Here we aimed to assess whether, in line with the RASGRF1 knockout mouse phenotype, rs8027411 might also be associated with human memory function. We performed computer-based neuropsychological learning experiments in two independent cohorts of young, healthy participants. Tests included the Verbal Learning and Memory Test (VLMT) and the logical memory section of the Wechsler Memory Scale (WMS). Two sub-cohorts additionally participated in functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies of hippocampus function. 119 participants performed a novelty encoding task that had previously been shown to engage the hippocampus, and 63 subjects participated in a reward-related memory encoding study. RASGRF1 rs8027411 genotype was indeed associated with memory performance in an allele dosage-dependent manner, with carriers of the T allele (i.e., the myopia risk allele) showing better memory performance in the early encoding phase of the VLMT and in the recall phase of the WMS logical memory section. In fMRI, T allele carriers exhibited increased hippocampal activation during presentation of novel images and during encoding of pictures associated with monetary reward. Taken together, our results provide evidence for a role of the RASGRF1 gene locus in hippocampus-dependent memory and, along with the previous association with myopia, point toward pleitropic effects of RASGRF1 genetic variations on complex neural function in humans. PMID:24808846

  11. Probabilistic models of genetic variation in structured populations applied to global human studies

    PubMed Central

    Hao, Wei; Song, Minsun; Storey, John D.

    2016-01-01

    Motivation: Modern population genetics studies typically involve genome-wide genotyping of individuals from a diverse network of ancestries. An important problem is how to formulate and estimate probabilistic models of observed genotypes that account for complex population structure. The most prominent work on this problem has focused on estimating a model of admixture proportions of ancestral populations for each individual. Here, we instead focus on modeling variation of the genotypes without requiring a higher-level admixture interpretation. Results: We formulate two general probabilistic models, and we propose computationally efficient algorithms to estimate them. First, we show how principal component analysis can be utilized to estimate a general model that includes the well-known Pritchard–Stephens–Donnelly admixture model as a special case. Noting some drawbacks of this approach, we introduce a new ‘logistic factor analysis’ framework that seeks to directly model the logit transformation of probabilities underlying observed genotypes in terms of latent variables that capture population structure. We demonstrate these advances on data from the Human Genome Diversity Panel and 1000 Genomes Project, where we are able to identify SNPs that are highly differentiated with respect to structure while making minimal modeling assumptions. Availability and Implementation: A Bioconductor R package called lfa is available at http://www.bioconductor.org/packages/release/bioc/html/lfa.html. Contact: jstorey@princeton.edu Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. PMID:26545820

  12. Human variation databases

    PubMed Central

    Küntzer, Jan; Eggle, Daniela; Klostermann, Stefan; Burtscher, Helmut

    2010-01-01

    More than 100 000 human genetic variations have been described in various genes that are associated with a wide variety of diseases. Such data provides invaluable information for both clinical medicine and basic science. A number of locus-specific databases have been developed to exploit this huge amount of data. However, the scope, format and content of these databases differ strongly and as no standard for variation databases has yet been adopted, the way data is presented varies enormously. This review aims to give an overview of current resources for human variation data in public and commercial resources. PMID:20639550

  13. Population Variation and Genetic Control of Modular Chromatin Architecture in Humans.

    PubMed

    Waszak, Sebastian M; Delaneau, Olivier; Gschwind, Andreas R; Kilpinen, Helena; Raghav, Sunil K; Witwicki, Robert M; Orioli, Andrea; Wiederkehr, Michael; Panousis, Nikolaos I; Yurovsky, Alisa; Romano-Palumbo, Luciana; Planchon, Alexandra; Bielser, Deborah; Padioleau, Ismael; Udin, Gilles; Thurnheer, Sarah; Hacker, David; Hernandez, Nouria; Reymond, Alexandre; Deplancke, Bart; Dermitzakis, Emmanouil T

    2015-08-27

    Chromatin state variation at gene regulatory elements is abundant across individuals, yet we understand little about the genetic basis of this variability. Here, we profiled several histone modifications, the transcription factor (TF) PU.1, RNA polymerase II, and gene expression in lymphoblastoid cell lines from 47 whole-genome sequenced individuals. We observed that distinct cis-regulatory elements exhibit coordinated chromatin variation across individuals in the form of variable chromatin modules (VCMs) at sub-Mb scale. VCMs were associated with thousands of genes and preferentially cluster within chromosomal contact domains. We mapped strong proximal and weak, yet more ubiquitous, distal-acting chromatin quantitative trait loci (cQTL) that frequently explain this variation. cQTLs were associated with molecular activity at clusters of cis-regulatory elements and mapped preferentially within TF-bound regions. We propose that local, sequence-independent chromatin variation emerges as a result of genetic perturbations in cooperative interactions between cis-regulatory elements that are located within the same genomic domain. PMID:26300124

  14. Genetic variation at the delta-sarcoglycan (SGCD) locus elevates heritable sympathetic nerve activity in human twin pairs

    PubMed Central

    Hightower, C. Makena; Zhang, Kuixing; Miramontes-González, José Pablo; Rao, Fangwen; Wei, Zhiyun; Schork, Andrew J.; Nievergelt, Caroline M.; Biswas, Nilima; Mahata, Manjula; Elkelis, Nina; Taupenot, Laurent; Stridsberg, Mats; Ziegler, Michael G.; O'Connor, Daniel T.

    2013-01-01

    The Syrian Cardiomyopathic Hamster (BIO-14.6/53.58 strains) model of cardiac failure, resulting from naturally occurring deletion at the SGCD (delta-sarcoglycan) locus, displays widespread disturbances in catecholamine metabolism. Rare Mendelian myopathy disorders of human SGCD occur, though common naturally occurring SGCD genetic variation has not been evaluated for effects on human norepinephrine (NE) secretion. This study investigated the effect of SGCD genetic variation on control of NE secretion in healthy twin pairs. Genetic associations profiled SNPs across the SGCD locus. Trait heritability (h2) and genetic covariance (pleiotropy; shared h2) were evaluated. Sympathochromaffin exocytosis in vivo was probed in plasma by both catecholamines and CHGB. Plasma NE is substantially heritable (P=3.19E-16, at 65.2±5.0% of trait variance), sharing significant (P<0.05) genetic determination with circulating and urinary catecholamines, CHGB, eGFR and several cardio-metabolic traits. Participants with higher pNE showed significant (P<0.05) differences in several traits, including increased BP and hypertension risk factors. Peak SGCD variant rs1835919 predicted elevated systemic vascular compliance, without changes in specifically myocardial traits. We used a chimeric regulated secretory pathway photoprotein (CHGA-EAP) to evaluate the effect of SGCD on the exocytotic pathway in transfected PC12 cells; in transfected cells, expression of SGCD augmented CHGA trafficking into the exocytotic regulated secretory pathway. Thus our investigation determined human NE secretion to be a highly heritable trait, influenced by common genetic variation within the SGCD locus. Circulating NE aggregates with BP and hypertension risk factors. Additionally, coordinate NE and CHGB elevation by rs1835919 implicates exocytosis as the mechanism of release. PMID:23786442

  15. Genetic variation at the delta-sarcoglycan (SGCD) locus elevates heritable sympathetic nerve activity in human twin pairs.

    PubMed

    Hightower, C Makena; Zhang, Kuixing; Miramontes-González, José P; Rao, Fangwen; Wei, Zhiyun; Schork, Andrew J; Nievergelt, Caroline M; Biswas, Nilima; Mahata, Manjula; Elkelis, Nina; Taupenot, Laurent; Stridsberg, Mats; Ziegler, Michael G; O'Connor, Daniel T

    2013-12-01

    The Syrian Cardiomyopathic Hamster (BIO-14.6/53.58 strains) model of cardiac failure, resulting from naturally occurring deletion at the SGCD (delta-sarcoglycan) locus, displays widespread disturbances in catecholamine metabolism. Rare Mendelian myopathy disorders of human SGCD occur, although common naturally occurring SGCD genetic variation has not been evaluated for effects on human norepinephrine (NE) secretion. This study investigated the effect of SGCD genetic variation on control of NE secretion in healthy twin pairs. Genetic associations profiled SNPs across the SGCD locus. Trait heritability (h(2)) and genetic covariance (pleiotropy; shared h(2)) were evaluated. Sympathochromaffin exocytosis in vivo was probed in plasma by both catecholamines and Chromogranin B (CHGB). Plasma NE is substantially heritable (p = 3.19E-16, at 65.2 ± 5.0% of trait variance), sharing significant (p < 0.05) genetic determination with circulating and urinary catecholamines, CHGB, eGFR, and several cardio-metabolic traits. Participants with higher pNE showed significant (p < 0.05) differences in several traits, including increased BP and hypertension risk factors. Peak SGCD variant rs1835919 predicted elevated systemic vascular compliance, without changes in specifically myocardial traits. We used a chimeric-regulated secretory pathway photoprotein (CHGA-EAP) to evaluate the effect of SGCD on the exocytotic pathway in transfected PC12 cells; in transfected cells, expression of SGCD augmented CHGA trafficking into the exocytotic regulated secretory pathway. Thus, our investigation determined human NE secretion to be a highly heritable trait, influenced by common genetic variation within the SGCD locus. Circulating NE aggregates with BP and hypertension risk factors. In addition, coordinate NE and CHGB elevation by rs1835919 implicates exocytosis as the mechanism of release. PMID:23786442

  16. Genetic variation in a member of the laminin gene family affects variation in body composition in Drosophila and humans

    PubMed Central

    De Luca, Maria; Chambers, Michelle Moses; Casazza, Krista; Lok, Kerry H; Hunter, Gary R; Gower, Barbara A; Fernández, José R

    2008-01-01

    Background The objective of the present study was to map candidate loci influencing naturally occurring variation in triacylglycerol (TAG) storage using quantitative complementation procedures in Drosophila melanogaster. Based on our results from Drosophila, we performed a human population-based association study to investigate the effect of natural variation in LAMA5 gene on body composition in humans. Results We identified four candidate genes that contributed to differences in TAG storage between two strains of D. melanogaster, including Laminin A (LanA), which is a member of the α subfamily of laminin chains. We confirmed the effects of this gene using a viable LanA mutant and showed that female flies homozygous for the mutation had significantly lower TAG storage, body weight, and total protein content than control flies. Drosophila LanA is closely related to human LAMA5 gene, which maps to the well-replicated obesity-linkage region on chromosome 20q13.2-q13.3. We tested for association between three common single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the human LAMA5 gene and variation in body composition and lipid profile traits in a cohort of unrelated women of European American (EA) and African American (AA) descent. In both ethnic groups, we found that SNP rs659822 was associated with weight (EA: P = 0.008; AA: P = 0.05) and lean mass (EA: P= 0.003; AA: P = 0.03). We also found this SNP to be associated with height (P = 0.01), total fat mass (P = 0.01), and HDL-cholesterol (P = 0.003) but only in EA women. Finally, significant associations of SNP rs944895 with serum TAG levels (P = 0.02) and HDL-cholesterol (P = 0.03) were observed in AA women. Conclusion Our results suggest an evolutionarily conserved role of a member of the laminin gene family in contributing to variation in weight and body composition. PMID:18694491

  17. Human genetics

    SciTech Connect

    Carlson, E.A.

    1984-01-01

    This text provides full and balanced coverage of the concepts requisite for a thorough understanding of human genetics. Applications to both the individual and society are integrated throughout the lively and personal narrative, and the essential principles of heredity are clearly presented to prepare students for informed participation in public controversies. High-interest, controversial topics, including recombinant DNA technology, oncogenes, embryo transfer, environmental mutagens and carcinogens, IQ testing, and eugenics encourage understanding of important social issues.

  18. Genetic Variation among Human Isolates of Uninucleated Cyst-Producing Entamoeba Species

    PubMed Central

    Verweij, Jaco J.; Polderman, Anton M.; Clark, C. Graham

    2001-01-01

    Twelve human infections with Entamoeba spp. producing uninucleated cysts were studied. DNA was extracted from infected feces and used to amplify part of the ameba small-subunit rRNA gene. Sequence analysis identified four distinct types of Entamoeba, all of which are related to Entamoeba polecki and E. chattoni and two of which have not been reported previously. Whether these genetic types represent different species is unclear. We propose that the agent of all human infections with uninucleated cyst-producing Entamoeba species be reported as “E. polecki-like.” PMID:11283106

  19. Dominant Genetic Variation and Missing Heritability for Human Complex Traits: Insights from Twin versus Genome-wide Common SNP Models

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Xu; Kuja-Halkola, Ralf; Rahman, Iffat; Arpegård, Johannes; Viktorin, Alexander; Karlsson, Robert; Hägg, Sara; Svensson, Per; Pedersen, Nancy L.; Magnusson, Patrik K.E.

    2015-01-01

    In order to further illuminate the potential role of dominant genetic variation in the “missing heritability” debate, we investigated the additive (narrow-sense heritability, h2) and dominant (δ2) genetic variance for 18 human complex traits. Within the same study base (10,682 Swedish twins), we calculated and compared the estimates from classic twin-based structural equation model with SNP-based genomic-relatedness-matrix restricted maximum likelihood [GREML(d)] method. Contributions of δ2 were evident for 14 traits in twin models (average δ2twin = 0.25, range 0.14–0.49), two of which also displayed significant δ2 in the GREMLd analyses (triglycerides δ2SNP = 0.28 and waist circumference δ2SNP = 0.19). On average, the proportion of h2SNP/h2twin was 70% for ADE-fitted traits (for which the best-fitting model included additive and dominant genetic and unique environmental components) and 31% for AE-fitted traits (for which the best-fitting model included additive genetic and unique environmental components). Independent evidence for contribution from shared environment, also in ADE-fitted traits, was obtained from self-reported within-pair contact frequency and age at separation. We conclude that despite the fact that additive genetics appear to constitute the bulk of genetic influences for most complex traits, dominant genetic variation might often be masked by shared environment in twin and family studies and might therefore have a more prominent role than what family-based estimates often suggest. The risk of erroneously attributing all inherited genetic influences (additive and dominant) to the h2 in too-small twin studies might also lead to exaggerated “missing heritability” (the proportion of h2 that remains unexplained by SNPs). PMID:26544805

  20. The role of community review in evaluating the risks of human genetic variation research.

    PubMed

    Foster, M W; Sharp, R R; Freeman, W L; Chino, M; Bernsten, D; Carter, T H

    1999-06-01

    The practicality and moral value of community review of human genetic research has become a focus of debate. Examples from two Native American communities are used to address four aspects of that debate: (1) the value of community review in larger, geographically dispersed populations; (2) the identification of culturally specific risks; (3) the potential conflict between individual and group assessments of research-related risks; and (4) the confusion of social categories with biological categories. Our experiences working with these two communities suggest that: (1) successful community review may require the involvement of private social units (e.g., families); (2) culturally specific implications of genetic research may be identifiable only by community members and are of valid concern in their moral universes; (3) community concerns can be incorporated into existing review mechanisms without necessarily giving communities the power to veto research proposals; and (4) the conflation of social and biological categories presents recruitment problems for genetic studies. These conclusions argue for the use of community review to identify and minimize research-related risks posed by genetic studies. Community review also can assist in facilitating participant recruitment and retention, as well as in developing partnerships between researchers and communities. PMID:10330360

  1. Genomic and Network Patterns of Schizophrenia Genetic Variation in Human Evolutionary Accelerated Regions

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Ke; Schadt, Eric E.; Pollard, Katherine S.; Roussos, Panos; Dudley, Joel T.

    2015-01-01

    The population persistence of schizophrenia despite associated reductions in fitness and fecundity suggests that the genetic basis of schizophrenia has a complex evolutionary history. A recent meta-analysis of schizophrenia genome-wide association studies offers novel opportunities for assessment of the evolutionary trajectories of schizophrenia-associated loci. In this study, we hypothesize that components of the genetic architecture of schizophrenia are attributable to human lineage-specific evolution. Our results suggest that schizophrenia-associated loci enrich in genes near previously identified human accelerated regions (HARs). Specifically, we find that genes near HARs conserved in nonhuman primates (pHARs) are enriched for schizophrenia-associated loci, and that pHAR-associated schizophrenia genes are under stronger selective pressure than other schizophrenia genes and other pHAR-associated genes. We further evaluate pHAR-associated schizophrenia genes in regulatory network contexts to investigate associated molecular functions and mechanisms. We find that pHAR-associated schizophrenia genes significantly enrich in a GABA-related coexpression module that was previously found to be differentially regulated in schizophrenia affected individuals versus healthy controls. In another two independent networks constructed from gene expression profiles from prefrontal cortex samples, we find that pHAR-associated schizophrenia genes are located in more central positions and their average path lengths to the other nodes are significantly shorter than those of other schizophrenia genes. Together, our results suggest that HARs are associated with potentially important functional roles in the genetic architecture of schizophrenia. PMID:25681384

  2. Human genetics of the Kula Ring: Y-chromosome and mitochondrial DNA variation in the Massim of Papua New Guinea.

    PubMed

    van Oven, Mannis; Brauer, Silke; Choi, Ying; Ensing, Joe; Schiefenhövel, Wulf; Stoneking, Mark; Kayser, Manfred

    2014-12-01

    The island region at the southeastern-most tip of New Guinea and its inhabitants known as Massim are well known for a unique traditional inter-island trading system, called Kula or Kula Ring. To characterize the Massim genetically, and to evaluate the influence of the Kula Ring on patterns of human genetic variation, we analyzed paternally inherited Y-chromosome (NRY) and maternally inherited mitochondrial (mt) DNA polymorphisms in >400 individuals from this region. We found that the nearly exclusively Austronesian-speaking Massim people harbor genetic ancestry components of both Asian (AS) and Near Oceanian (NO) origin, with a proportionally larger NO NRY component versus a larger AS mtDNA component. This is similar to previous observations in other Austronesian-speaking populations from Near and Remote Oceania and suggests sex-biased genetic admixture between Asians and Near Oceanians before the occupation of Remote Oceania, in line with the Slow Boat from Asia hypothesis on the expansion of Austronesians into the Pacific. Contrary to linguistic expectations, Rossel Islanders, the only Papuan speakers of the Massim, showed a lower amount of NO genetic ancestry than their Austronesian-speaking Massim neighbors. For the islands traditionally involved in the Kula Ring, a significant correlation between inter-island travelling distances and genetic distances was observed for mtDNA, but not for NRY, suggesting more male- than female-mediated gene flow. As traditionally only males take part in the Kula voyages, this finding may indicate a genetic signature of the Kula Ring, serving as another example of how cultural tradition has shaped human genetic diversity. PMID:24619143

  3. Human genetics of the Kula Ring: Y-chromosome and mitochondrial DNA variation in the Massim of Papua New Guinea

    PubMed Central

    van Oven, Mannis; Brauer, Silke; Choi, Ying; Ensing, Joe; Schiefenhövel, Wulf; Stoneking, Mark; Kayser, Manfred

    2014-01-01

    The island region at the southeastern-most tip of New Guinea and its inhabitants known as Massim are well known for a unique traditional inter-island trading system, called Kula or Kula Ring. To characterize the Massim genetically, and to evaluate the influence of the Kula Ring on patterns of human genetic variation, we analyzed paternally inherited Y-chromosome (NRY) and maternally inherited mitochondrial (mt) DNA polymorphisms in >400 individuals from this region. We found that the nearly exclusively Austronesian-speaking Massim people harbor genetic ancestry components of both Asian (AS) and Near Oceanian (NO) origin, with a proportionally larger NO NRY component versus a larger AS mtDNA component. This is similar to previous observations in other Austronesian-speaking populations from Near and Remote Oceania and suggests sex-biased genetic admixture between Asians and Near Oceanians before the occupation of Remote Oceania, in line with the Slow Boat from Asia hypothesis on the expansion of Austronesians into the Pacific. Contrary to linguistic expectations, Rossel Islanders, the only Papuan speakers of the Massim, showed a lower amount of NO genetic ancestry than their Austronesian-speaking Massim neighbors. For the islands traditionally involved in the Kula Ring, a significant correlation between inter-island travelling distances and genetic distances was observed for mtDNA, but not for NRY, suggesting more male- than female-mediated gene flow. As traditionally only males take part in the Kula voyages, this finding may indicate a genetic signature of the Kula Ring, serving as another example of how cultural tradition has shaped human genetic diversity. PMID:24619143

  4. Combined examination of sequence and copy number variations in human deafness genes improves diagnosis for cases of genetic deafness

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Copy number variations (CNVs) are the major type of structural variation in the human genome, and are more common than DNA sequence variations in populations. CNVs are important factors for human genetic and phenotypic diversity. Many CNVs have been associated with either resistance to diseases or identified as the cause of diseases. Currently little is known about the role of CNVs in causing deafness. CNVs are currently not analyzed by conventional genetic analysis methods to study deafness. Here we detected both DNA sequence variations and CNVs affecting 80 genes known to be required for normal hearing. Methods Coding regions of the deafness genes were captured by a hybridization-based method and processed through the standard next-generation sequencing (NGS) protocol using the Illumina platform. Samples hybridized together in the same reaction were analyzed to obtain CNVs. A read depth based method was used to measure CNVs at the resolution of a single exon. Results were validated by the quantitative PCR (qPCR) based method. Results Among 79 sporadic cases clinically diagnosed with sensorineural hearing loss, we identified previously-reported disease-causing sequence mutations in 16 cases. In addition, we identified a total of 97 CNVs (72 CNV gains and 25 CNV losses) in 27 deafness genes. The CNVs included homozygous deletions which may directly give rise to deleterious effects on protein functions known to be essential for hearing, as well as heterozygous deletions and CNV gains compounded with sequence mutations in deafness genes that could potentially harm gene functions. Conclusions We studied how CNVs in known deafness genes may result in deafness. Data provided here served as a basis to explain how CNVs disrupt normal functions of deafness genes. These results may significantly expand our understanding about how various types of genetic mutations cause deafness in humans. PMID:25342930

  5. Genetic variation in human NPY expression affects stress response and emotion

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Zhifeng; Zhu, Guanshan; Hariri, Ahmad R.; Enoch, Mary-Anne; Scott, David; Sinha, Rajita; Virkkunen, Matti; Mash, Deborah C.; Lipsky, Robert H.; Hu, Xian-Zhang; Hodgkinson, Colin A.; Xu, Ke; Buzas, Beata; Yuan, Qiaoping; Shen, Pei-Hong; Ferrell, Robert E.; Manuck, Stephen B.; Brown, Sarah M.; Hauger, Richard L.; Stohler, Christian S.; Zubieta, Jon-Kar; Goldman, David

    2009-01-01

    Understanding inter-individual differences in stress response requires the explanation of genetic influences at multiple phenotypic levels, including complex behaviours and the metabolic responses of brain regions to emotional stimuli. Neuropeptide Y (NPY) is anxiolytic1,2 and its release is induced by stress3. NPY is abundantly expressed in regions of the limbic system that are implicated in arousal and in the assignment of emotional valences to stimuli and memories4–6. Here we show that haplotype-driven NPY expression predicts brain responses to emotional and stress challenges and also inversely correlates with trait anxiety. NPY haplotypes predicted levels of NPY messenger RNA in postmortem brain and lymphoblasts, and levels of plasma NPY. Lower haplotype-driven NPY expression predicted higher emotion-induced activation of the amygdala, as well as diminished resiliency as assessed by pain/stress-induced activations of endogenous opioid neurotransmission in various brain regions. A single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP rs16147) located in the promoter region alters NPY expression in vitro and seems to account for more than half of the variation in expression in vivo. These convergent findings are consistent with the function of NPY as an anxiolytic peptide and help to explain inter-individual variation in resiliency to stress, a risk factor for many diseases. PMID:18385673

  6. Genetic variation in human NPY expression affects stress response and emotion.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Zhifeng; Zhu, Guanshan; Hariri, Ahmad R; Enoch, Mary-Anne; Scott, David; Sinha, Rajita; Virkkunen, Matti; Mash, Deborah C; Lipsky, Robert H; Hu, Xian-Zhang; Hodgkinson, Colin A; Xu, Ke; Buzas, Beata; Yuan, Qiaoping; Shen, Pei-Hong; Ferrell, Robert E; Manuck, Stephen B; Brown, Sarah M; Hauger, Richard L; Stohler, Christian S; Zubieta, Jon-Kar; Goldman, David

    2008-04-24

    Understanding inter-individual differences in stress response requires the explanation of genetic influences at multiple phenotypic levels, including complex behaviours and the metabolic responses of brain regions to emotional stimuli. Neuropeptide Y (NPY) is anxiolytic and its release is induced by stress. NPY is abundantly expressed in regions of the limbic system that are implicated in arousal and in the assignment of emotional valences to stimuli and memories. Here we show that haplotype-driven NPY expression predicts brain responses to emotional and stress challenges and also inversely correlates with trait anxiety. NPY haplotypes predicted levels of NPY messenger RNA in post-mortem brain and lymphoblasts, and levels of plasma NPY. Lower haplotype-driven NPY expression predicted higher emotion-induced activation of the amygdala, as well as diminished resiliency as assessed by pain/stress-induced activations of endogenous opioid neurotransmission in various brain regions. A single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP rs16147) located in the promoter region alters NPY expression in vitro and seems to account for more than half of the variation in expression in vivo. These convergent findings are consistent with the function of NPY as an anxiolytic peptide and help to explain inter-individual variation in resiliency to stress, a risk factor for many diseases. PMID:18385673

  7. A Potential Role for a Genetic Variation of AKAP5 in Human Aggression and Anger Control

    PubMed Central

    Richter, Sylvia; Gorny, Xenia; Marco-Pallares, Josep; Krämer, Ulrike M.; Machts, Judith; Barman, Adriana; Bernstein, Hans-Gert; Schüle, Rebecca; Schöls, Ludger; Rodriguez-Fornells, Antoni; Reissner, Carsten; Wüstenberg, Torsten; Heinze, Hans-Jochen; Gundelfinger, Eckart D.; Düzel, Emrah; Münte, Thomas F.; Seidenbecher, Constanze I.; Schott, Björn H.

    2011-01-01

    The A-kinase-anchoring protein 5 (AKAP5), a post-synaptic multi-adaptor molecule that binds G-protein-coupled receptors and intracellular signaling molecules has been implicated in emotional processing in rodents, but its role in human emotion and behavior is up to now still not quite clear. Here, we report an association of individual differences in aggressive behavior and anger expression with a functional genetic polymorphism (Pro100Leu) in the human AKAP5 gene. Among a cohort of 527 young, healthy individuals, carriers of the less common Leu allele (15.6% allele frequency) scored significantly lower in the physical aggression domain of the Buss and Perry Aggression Questionnaire and higher in the anger control dimension of the state-trait anger expression inventory. In a functional magnetic resonance imaging experiment we could further demonstrate that AKAP5 Pro100Leu modulates the interaction of negative emotional processing and executive functions. In order to investigate implicit processes of anger control, we used the well-known flanker task to evoke processes of action monitoring and error processing and added task-irrelevant neutral or angry faces in the background of the flanker stimuli. In line with our predictions, Leu carriers showed increased activation of the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) during emotional interference, which in turn predicted shorter reaction times and might be related to stronger control of emotional interference. Conversely, Pro homozygotes exhibited increased orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) activation during emotional interference, with no behavioral advantage. Immunohistochemistry revealed AKAP5 expression in post mortem human ACC and OFC. Our results suggest that AKAP5 Pro100Leu contributes to individual differences in human aggression and anger control. Further research is warranted to explore the detailed role of AKAP5 and its gene product in human emotion processing. PMID:22232585

  8. Genetic Variations in the Human Cannabinoid Receptor Gene Are Associated with Happiness

    PubMed Central

    Matsunaga, Masahiro; Isowa, Tokiko; Yamakawa, Kaori; Fukuyama, Seisuke; Shinoda, Jun; Yamada, Jitsuhiro; Ohira, Hideki

    2014-01-01

    Happiness has been viewed as a temporary emotional state (e.g., pleasure) and a relatively stable state of being happy (subjective happiness level). As previous studies demonstrated that individuals with high subjective happiness level rated their current affective states more positively when they experience positive events, these two aspects of happiness are interrelated. According to a recent neuroimaging study, the cytosine to thymine single-nucleotide polymorphism of the human cannabinoid receptor 1 gene is associated with sensitivity to positive emotional stimuli. Thus, we hypothesized that our genetic traits, such as the human cannabinoid receptor 1 genotypes, are closely related to the two aspects of happiness. In Experiment 1, 198 healthy volunteers were used to compare the subjective happiness level between cytosine allele carriers and thymine-thymine carriers of the human cannabinoid receptor 1 gene. In Experiment 2, we used positron emission tomography with 20 healthy participants to compare the brain responses to positive emotional stimuli of cytosine allele carriers to that of thymine-thymine carriers. Compared to thymine-thymine carriers, cytosine allele carriers have a higher subjective happiness level. Regression analysis indicated that the cytosine allele is significantly associated with subjective happiness level. The positive mood after watching a positive film was significantly higher for the cytosine allele carriers compared to the thymine-thymine carriers. Positive emotion-related brain region such as the medial prefrontal cortex was significantly activated when the cytosine allele carriers watched the positive film compared to the thymine-thymine carriers. Thus, the human cannabinoid receptor 1 genotypes are closely related to two aspects of happiness. Compared to thymine-thymine carriers, the cytosine allele carriers of the human cannabinoid receptor 1 gene, who are sensitive to positive emotional stimuli, exhibited greater magnitude

  9. FAAH genetic variation enhances fronto-amygdala function in mouse and human

    PubMed Central

    Dincheva, Iva; Drysdale, Andrew T.; Hartley, Catherine A.; Johnson, David C.; Jing, Deqiang; King, Elizabeth C.; Ra, Stephen; Gray, Megan; Yang, Ruirong; DeGruccio, Ann Marie; Huang, Chienchun; Cravatt, Benjamin F.; Glatt, Charles E.; Hill, Matthew N.; Casey, B. J.; Lee, Francis S.

    2015-01-01

    Cross-species studies enable rapid translational discovery and produce the broadest impact when both mechanism and phenotype are consistent across organisms. We developed a knock-in mouse that biologically recapitulates a common human mutation in the gene for fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH) (C385A; rs324420), the primary catabolic enzyme for the endocannabinoid anandamide. This common polymorphism impacts the expression and activity of FAAH, thereby increasing anandamide levels. Here, we show that the genetic knock-in mouse and human variant allele carriers exhibit parallel alterations in biochemisty, neurocircuitry, and behavior. Specifically, there is reduced FAAH expression associated with the variant allele that selectively enhances fronto-amygdala connectivity and fear extinction learning, and decreases anxiety-like behaviors. These results suggest a gain-of-function in fear regulation and may indicate for whom and for what anxiety symptoms FAAH inhibitors or exposure-based therapies will be most efficacious, bridging an important translational gap between the mouse and human. PMID:25731744

  10. FAAH genetic variation enhances fronto-amygdala function in mouse and human.

    PubMed

    Dincheva, Iva; Drysdale, Andrew T; Hartley, Catherine A; Johnson, David C; Jing, Deqiang; King, Elizabeth C; Ra, Stephen; Gray, J Megan; Yang, Ruirong; DeGruccio, Ann Marie; Huang, Chienchun; Cravatt, Benjamin F; Glatt, Charles E; Hill, Matthew N; Casey, B J; Lee, Francis S

    2015-01-01

    Cross-species studies enable rapid translational discovery and produce the broadest impact when both mechanism and phenotype are consistent across organisms. We developed a knock-in mouse that biologically recapitulates a common human mutation in the gene for fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH) (C385A; rs324420), the primary catabolic enzyme for the endocannabinoid anandamide. This common polymorphism impacts the expression and activity of FAAH, thereby increasing anandamide levels. Here, we show that the genetic knock-in mouse and human variant allele carriers exhibit parallel alterations in biochemisty, neurocircuitry and behaviour. Specifically, there is reduced FAAH expression associated with the variant allele that selectively enhances fronto-amygdala connectivity and fear extinction learning, and decreases anxiety-like behaviours. These results suggest a gain of function in fear regulation and may indicate for whom and for what anxiety symptoms FAAH inhibitors or exposure-based therapies will be most efficacious, bridging an important translational gap between the mouse and human. PMID:25731744

  11. Massively parallel quantification of the regulatory effects of noncoding genetic variation in a human cohort

    PubMed Central

    Vockley, Christopher M.; Guo, Cong; Majoros, William H.; Nodzenski, Michael; Scholtens, Denise M.; Hayes, M. Geoffrey; Lowe, William L.; Reddy, Timothy E.

    2015-01-01

    We report a novel high-throughput method to empirically quantify individual-specific regulatory element activity at the population scale. The approach combines targeted DNA capture with a high-throughput reporter gene expression assay. As demonstration, we measured the activity of more than 100 putative regulatory elements from 95 individuals in a single experiment. In agreement with previous reports, we found that most genetic variants have weak effects on distal regulatory element activity. Because haplotypes are typically maintained within but not between assayed regulatory elements, the approach can be used to identify causal regulatory haplotypes that likely contribute to human phenotypes. Finally, we demonstrate the utility of the method to functionally fine map causal regulatory variants in regions of high linkage disequilibrium identified by expression quantitative trait loci (eQTL) analyses. PMID:26084464

  12. Multidimensional structure-function relationships in human β-cardiac myosin from population-scale genetic variation

    PubMed Central

    Homburger, Julian R.; Green, Eric M.; Caleshu, Colleen; Sunitha, Margaret S.; Taylor, Rebecca E.; Ruppel, Kathleen M.; Metpally, Raghu Prasad Rao; Colan, Steven D.; Michels, Michelle; Day, Sharlene M.; Olivotto, Iacopo; Bustamante, Carlos D.; Dewey, Frederick E.; Ho, Carolyn Y.; Spudich, James A.; Ashley, Euan A.

    2016-01-01

    Myosin motors are the fundamental force-generating elements of muscle contraction. Variation in the human β-cardiac myosin heavy chain gene (MYH7) can lead to hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM), a heritable disease characterized by cardiac hypertrophy, heart failure, and sudden cardiac death. How specific myosin variants alter motor function or clinical expression of disease remains incompletely understood. Here, we combine structural models of myosin from multiple stages of its chemomechanical cycle, exome sequencing data from two population cohorts of 60,706 and 42,930 individuals, and genetic and phenotypic data from 2,913 patients with HCM to identify regions of disease enrichment within β-cardiac myosin. We first developed computational models of the human β-cardiac myosin protein before and after the myosin power stroke. Then, using a spatial scan statistic modified to analyze genetic variation in protein 3D space, we found significant enrichment of disease-associated variants in the converter, a kinetic domain that transduces force from the catalytic domain to the lever arm to accomplish the power stroke. Focusing our analysis on surface-exposed residues, we identified a larger region significantly enriched for disease-associated variants that contains both the converter domain and residues on a single flat surface on the myosin head described as the myosin mesa. Notably, patients with HCM with variants in the enriched regions have earlier disease onset than patients who have HCM with variants elsewhere. Our study provides a model for integrating protein structure, large-scale genetic sequencing, and detailed phenotypic data to reveal insight into time-shifted protein structures and genetic disease. PMID:27247418

  13. Investigation of common and rare genetic variation in the BAMBI genomic region in light of human obesity.

    PubMed

    Van Camp, Jasmijn K; De Freitas, Fenna; Zegers, Doreen; Beckers, Sigri; Verhulst, Stijn L; Van Hoorenbeeck, Kim; Massa, Guy; Verrijken, An; Desager, Kristine N; Van Gaal, Luc F; Van Hul, Wim

    2016-05-01

    The aim of this study was to confirm the previously identified link between BAMBI and human obesity by means of a genetic and functional analysis. We performed both a mutation analysis, using high-resolution melting curve analysis, and a genetic association study, including 8 common tagSNPs in the BAMBI gene region. Three of the identified genetic variants (R151W, H201R, and C229R) were evaluated for their Wnt signaling enhancing capacity in a Wnt luciferase reporter assay. Mutation screening of the BAMBI coding region and exon-intron boundaries on our population of 677 obese children and adolescents and 529 lean control subjects resulted in the identification of 18 variants, 10 of which were not previously reported and 12 of which were exclusively found in obese individuals. The difference in variant frequency, not taking into account common polymorphisms, between obese (3.1 %) and lean (0.9 %) subjects was statistically significant (p = 0.004). Our Wnt luciferase assay, using WT and mutant BAMBI constructs, showed a significantly reduced activity for all of the investigated variants. Logistic and linear regression analysis on our Caucasian population of 1022 obese individuals and 606 lean controls, did not identify associations with obesity parameters (p values >0.05). We found several rare genetic variations, which represent the first naturally occurring missense variants of BAMBI in obese patients. Three variants (R151W, H201R, and C229R) were shown to reduce Wnt signaling enhancing capacity of BAMBI and we believe this result should encourage further study of this gene in other obese populations. In addition, we did not find evidence for the involvement of BAMBI common variation in human obesity in our population. PMID:26499194

  14. Multidimensional structure-function relationships in human β-cardiac myosin from population-scale genetic variation.

    PubMed

    Homburger, Julian R; Green, Eric M; Caleshu, Colleen; Sunitha, Margaret S; Taylor, Rebecca E; Ruppel, Kathleen M; Metpally, Raghu Prasad Rao; Colan, Steven D; Michels, Michelle; Day, Sharlene M; Olivotto, Iacopo; Bustamante, Carlos D; Dewey, Frederick E; Ho, Carolyn Y; Spudich, James A; Ashley, Euan A

    2016-06-14

    Myosin motors are the fundamental force-generating elements of muscle contraction. Variation in the human β-cardiac myosin heavy chain gene (MYH7) can lead to hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM), a heritable disease characterized by cardiac hypertrophy, heart failure, and sudden cardiac death. How specific myosin variants alter motor function or clinical expression of disease remains incompletely understood. Here, we combine structural models of myosin from multiple stages of its chemomechanical cycle, exome sequencing data from two population cohorts of 60,706 and 42,930 individuals, and genetic and phenotypic data from 2,913 patients with HCM to identify regions of disease enrichment within β-cardiac myosin. We first developed computational models of the human β-cardiac myosin protein before and after the myosin power stroke. Then, using a spatial scan statistic modified to analyze genetic variation in protein 3D space, we found significant enrichment of disease-associated variants in the converter, a kinetic domain that transduces force from the catalytic domain to the lever arm to accomplish the power stroke. Focusing our analysis on surface-exposed residues, we identified a larger region significantly enriched for disease-associated variants that contains both the converter domain and residues on a single flat surface on the myosin head described as the myosin mesa. Notably, patients with HCM with variants in the enriched regions have earlier disease onset than patients who have HCM with variants elsewhere. Our study provides a model for integrating protein structure, large-scale genetic sequencing, and detailed phenotypic data to reveal insight into time-shifted protein structures and genetic disease. PMID:27247418

  15. Genetic variation in the major mitotic checkpoint genes associated with chromosomal aberrations in healthy humans.

    PubMed

    Försti, Asta; Frank, Christoph; Smolkova, Bozena; Kazimirova, Alena; Barancokova, Magdalena; Vymetalkova, Veronika; Kroupa, Michal; Naccarati, Alessio; Vodickova, Ludmila; Buchancova, Janka; Dusinska, Maria; Musak, Ludovit; Vodicka, Pavel; Hemminki, Kari

    2016-10-01

    Non-specific chromosomal aberrations (CAs) are microscopically detected in about 1% of lymphocytes drawn from healthy persons. Causes of CAs in general population are not known but they may be related to risk of cancer. In view of the importance of the mitotic checkpoint machinery on maintaining chromosomal integrity we selected 9 variants in main checkpoint related genes (BUB1B, BUB3, MAD2L1, CENPF, ESPL1/separase, NEK2, PTTG1/securin, ZWILCH and ZWINT) for a genotyping study on samples from healthy individuals (N = 330 to 729) whose lymphocytes had an increased number of CAs compared to persons with a low number of CAs. Genetic variation in individual genes played a minor importance, consistent with the high conservation and selection pressure of the checkpoint system. However, gene pairs were significantly associated with CAs: PTTG1-ZWILCH and PTTG1-ZWINT. MAD2L1 and PTTG1 were the most common partners in any of the two-way interactions. The results suggest that interactions at the level of cohesin (PTTG1) and kinetochore function (ZWINT, ZWILCH and MAD2L1) contribute to the frequency of CAs, suggesting that gene variants at different checkpoint functions appeared to be required for the formation of CAs. PMID:27424524

  16. Genetic Variation among Major Human Geographic Groups Supports a Peculiar Evolutionary Trend in PAX9

    PubMed Central

    Paixão-Côrtes, Vanessa R.; Meyer, Diogo; Pereira, Tiago V.; Mazières, Stéphane; Elion, Jacques; Krishnamoorthy, Rajagopal; Zago, Marco A.; Silva, Wilson A.; Salzano, Francisco M.; Bortolini, Maria Cátira

    2011-01-01

    A total of 172 persons from nine South Amerindian, three African and one Eskimo populations were studied in relation to the Paired box gene 9 (PAX9) exon 3 (138 base pairs) as well as its 5′and 3′flanking intronic segments (232 bp and 220 bp, respectively) and integrated with the information available for the same genetic region from individuals of different geographical origins. Nine mutations were scored in exon 3 and six in its flanking regions; four of them are new South American tribe-specific singletons. Exon3 nucleotide diversity is several orders of magnitude higher than its intronic regions. Additionally, a set of variants in the PAX9 and 101 other genes related with dentition can define at least some dental morphological differences between Sub-Saharan Africans and non-Africans, probably associated with adaptations after the modern human exodus from Africa. Exon 3 of PAX9 could be a good molecular example of how evolvability works. PMID:21298044

  17. Genetic variations of human papillomavirus type 16: implications for cervical carcinogenesis.

    PubMed

    Kukimoto, Iwao; Muramatsu, Masamichi

    2015-01-01

    Human papillomaviruses (HPVs) are the causative agent of cervical cancer, and among approximately 15 high-risk genotypes, HPV16 accounts for more than half the cases of cervical cancer worldwide. Recent progress in determining HPV genomic sequences from clinical samples has revealed a wide variety in HPV16 genome sequences, and has allowed for comprehensive classification of intratype HPV16 variants. These consist of four variant lineages containing nucleotide variations in 1.0%-10.0% of the complete viral genome sequence. Epidemiological data suggest that the non-European-Asian lineages of HPV16 entail a higher risk of progression to invasive cervical cancer than the European-Asian lineage. Deep sequencing analysis has recently demonstrated that HPV16 genome sequences are highly homogeneous in individual clinical specimens compared with those of RNA viruses. However, an extremely sensitive PCR method, differential DNA denaturation PCR, has detected hypermutations from C to T or G to A in the E2 gene and the long control region of the HPV16 genome, which suggests the involvement of cellular apolipoprotein B mRNA editing enzyme, catalytic polypeptide-like (APOBEC) proteins in this hypermutation. The quasispecies status of the HPV16 genome in the infected cervix may affect the development of cervical cancer and warrants further investigation. PMID:25766614

  18. Global analysis of genetic variation in human arsenic (+ 3 oxidation state) methyltransferase (AS3MT)

    SciTech Connect

    Fujihara, Junko; Soejima, Mikiko; Yasuda, Toshihiro; Koda, Yoshiro; Agusa, Tetsuro; Kunito, Takashi; Tongu, Miki; Yamada, Takaya; Takeshita, Haruo

    2010-03-15

    Human arsenic (+ 3 oxidation state) methyltransferase (AS3MT) is known to catalyze the methylation of arsenite. The objective of this study was to investigate the diversity of the AS3MT gene at the global level. The distribution of 18 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in AS3MT was performed in 827 individuals from 10 populations (Japanese, Korean, Chinese, Mongolian, Tibetans, Sri Lankan Tamils, Sri Lankan Sinhalese, Nepal Tamangs, Ovambo, and Ghanaian). In the African populations, the A allele in A6144T was not observed; the allele frequencies of C35587 were much lower than those in other populations; the allele frequencies of A37616 and C37950 were relatively higher than those in other populations. Among Asian populations, Mongolians showed a different genotype distribution pattern. A lower C3963 and T6144 frequencies were observed, and, in the C37616A and T37950C polymorphism, the Mongolian population showed higher A37616 and C37950 allele frequencies than other Asian populations, similarly to the African populations. A total of 66 haplotypes were observed in the Ovambo, 48, in the Ghanaian, 99, in the Japanese, 103, in the Korean, 103, in the South Chinese, 20, in the Sri Lankan Tamil, 12, in the Sri Lankan Sinhalese, 21, in the Nepal Tamang, 50, in the Tibetan, and 45, in the Mongolian populations. The D' values between the SNP pairs were extremely high in the Sri Lankan Sinhalese population. Relatively higher D' values were observed in Mongolian and Sri Lankan Tamil populations. Network analysis showed two clusters that may have different origins, African and Asians (Chinese and/or Japanese). The present study is the first to demonstrate the existence of genetic heterogeneity in a world wide distribution of 18 SNPs in AS3MT.

  19. Preliminary report: genetic variation in the human stromelysin promoter is associated with progression of coronary atherosclerosis.

    PubMed Central

    Ye, S.; Watts, G. F.; Mandalia, S.; Humphries, S. E.; Henney, A. M.

    1995-01-01

    Stromelysin is a member of the family of metalloproteinases that degrade extracellular matrix. In situ hybridisation and histopathological studies suggest that stromelysin activity may be important in the connective tissue remodelling processes associated with atherogenesis and plaque rupture. Single strand conformation polymorphism analysis identified a common polymorphism in the stromelysin gene promoter located 1171 bp upstream from the start of transcription in which one allele has a run of six adenosines (6A) and another has five adenosines (5A). 72 men with coronary heart disease, were genotyped. They were participants in the St Thomas' Atherosclerosis Regression Study who were randomised to receive usual care (UC), dietary intervention (D), or diet plus cholestyramine (DC), with angiography at baseline and at 39 months. In these patients the frequency of the 5A allele was 0.49 (95% CI from 0.41 to 0.57) and was not significantly different from that in a sample of 354 healthy UK men. In the UC group, patients who were homozygous for the 6A allele showed greater progression of angiographic disease than those with other genotypes: the minimum absolute width of coronary segments decreased by 0.04 (SEM 0.10) mm for 5A5A, 0.20 (0.07) mm for 5A6A, and 0.67 (0.19) mm for 6A6A (P < 0.01). The findings were similar but slightly less significant for the change in mean absolute width of coronary segments (P < 0.05). No significant associations were seen in patients in the D or DC groups. In data pooled from the three treatment groups, the 6A6A genotype was significantly associated with greater progression of coronary atherosclerosis than other genotypes in patients with baseline percentage diameter stenosis less than 20% (P < 0.05), but not in those with baseline percentage diameter stenosis greater than or equal to 20%. These results provide the first evidence of a link between genetic variation in stromelysin and progression of coronary atherosclerosis and support the

  20. Genetic sources of population epigenomic variation.

    PubMed

    Taudt, Aaron; Colomé-Tatché, Maria; Johannes, Frank

    2016-06-01

    The field of epigenomics has rapidly progressed from the study of individual reference epigenomes to surveying epigenomic variation in populations. Recent studies in a number of species, from yeast to humans, have begun to dissect the cis- and trans-regulatory genetic mechanisms that shape patterns of population epigenomic variation at the level of single epigenetic marks, as well as at the level of integrated chromatin state maps. We show that this information is paving the way towards a more complete understanding of the heritable basis underlying population epigenomic variation. We also highlight important conceptual challenges when interpreting results from these genetic studies, particularly in plants, in which epigenomic variation can be determined both by genetic and epigenetic inheritance. PMID:27156976

  1. Cryptic Genetic Variation in Evolutionary Developmental Genetics.

    PubMed

    Paaby, Annalise B; Gibson, Greg

    2016-01-01

    Evolutionary developmental genetics has traditionally been conducted by two groups: Molecular evolutionists who emphasize divergence between species or higher taxa, and quantitative geneticists who study variation within species. Neither approach really comes to grips with the complexities of evolutionary transitions, particularly in light of the realization from genome-wide association studies that most complex traits fit an infinitesimal architecture, being influenced by thousands of loci. This paper discusses robustness, plasticity and lability, phenomena that we argue potentiate major evolutionary changes and provide a bridge between the conceptual treatments of macro- and micro-evolution. We offer cryptic genetic variation and conditional neutrality as mechanisms by which standing genetic variation can lead to developmental system drift and, sheltered within canalized processes, may facilitate developmental transitions and the evolution of novelty. Synthesis of the two dominant perspectives will require recognition that adaptation, divergence, drift and stability all depend on similar underlying quantitative genetic processes-processes that cannot be fully observed in continuously varying visible traits. PMID:27304973

  2. Cryptic Genetic Variation in Evolutionary Developmental Genetics

    PubMed Central

    Paaby, Annalise B.; Gibson, Greg

    2016-01-01

    Evolutionary developmental genetics has traditionally been conducted by two groups: Molecular evolutionists who emphasize divergence between species or higher taxa, and quantitative geneticists who study variation within species. Neither approach really comes to grips with the complexities of evolutionary transitions, particularly in light of the realization from genome-wide association studies that most complex traits fit an infinitesimal architecture, being influenced by thousands of loci. This paper discusses robustness, plasticity and lability, phenomena that we argue potentiate major evolutionary changes and provide a bridge between the conceptual treatments of macro- and micro-evolution. We offer cryptic genetic variation and conditional neutrality as mechanisms by which standing genetic variation can lead to developmental system drift and, sheltered within canalized processes, may facilitate developmental transitions and the evolution of novelty. Synthesis of the two dominant perspectives will require recognition that adaptation, divergence, drift and stability all depend on similar underlying quantitative genetic processes—processes that cannot be fully observed in continuously varying visible traits. PMID:27304973

  3. Genetic variations in the serotonergic system contribute to amygdala volume in humans

    PubMed Central

    Li, Jin; Chen, Chunhui; Wu, Karen; Zhang, Mingxia; Zhu, Bi; Chen, Chuansheng; Moyzis, Robert K.; Dong, Qi

    2015-01-01

    The amygdala plays a critical role in emotion processing and psychiatric disorders associated with emotion dysfunction. Accumulating evidence suggests that amygdala structure is modulated by serotonin-related genes. However, there is a gap between the small contributions of single loci (less than 1%) and the reported 63–65% heritability of amygdala structure. To understand the “missing heritability,” we systematically explored the contribution of serotonin genes on amygdala structure at the gene set level. The present study of 417 healthy Chinese volunteers examined 129 representative polymorphisms in genes from multiple biological mechanisms in the regulation of serotonin neurotransmission. A system-level approach using multiple regression analyses identified that nine SNPs collectively accounted for approximately 8% of the variance in amygdala volume. Permutation analyses showed that the probability of obtaining these findings by chance was low (p = 0.043, permuted for 1000 times). Findings showed that serotonin genes contribute moderately to individual differences in amygdala volume in a healthy Chinese sample. These results indicate that the system-level approach can help us to understand the genetic basis of a complex trait such as amygdala structure. PMID:26500508

  4. Individual Variation of the Genetic Response to Bisphenol A in Human Foreskin Fibroblast Cells Derived from Cryptorchidism and Hypospadias Patients

    PubMed Central

    Qin, Xian-Yang; Sone, Hideko; Kojima, Yoshiyuki; Mizuno, Kentaro; Ueoka, Katsuhiko; Muroya, Koji; Miyado, Mami; Hisada, Aya; Zaha, Hiroko; Fukuda, Tomokazu; Yoshinaga, Jun; Yonemoto, Junzo; Kohri, Kenjiro; Hayashi, Yutaro; Fukami, Maki; Ogata, Tsutomu

    2012-01-01

    Background/Purpose We hypothesized that polymorphic differences among individuals might cause variations in the effect that environmental endocrine disruptors (EEDs) have on male genital malformations (MGMs). In this study, individual variation in the genetic response to low-dose bisphenol A (BPA) was investigated in human foreskin fibroblast cells (hFFCs) derived from child cryptorchidism (CO) and hypospadias (HS) patients. Methodology/Principal Findings hFFCs were collected from control children without MGMs (n = 5) and child CO and HS patients (n = 8 and 21, respectively). BPA exposure (10 nM) was found to inhibit matrix metalloproteinase-11 (MMP11) expression in the HS group (0.74-fold, P = 0.0034) but not in the control group (0.93-fold, P = 0.84) and CO group (0.94-fold, P = 0.70). Significantly lower levels of MMP11 expression were observed in the HS group compared with the control group (0.80-fold, P = 0.0088) and CO group (0.79-fold, P = 0.039) in response to 10 nM BPA. The effect of single-nucleotide polymorphism rs5000770 (G>A), located within the aryl hydrocarbon receptor nuclear translocator 2 (ARNT2) locus, on individual sensitivity to low-dose BPA was investigated in the HS group. A significant difference in neurotensin receptor 1 (NTSR1) expression in response to 10 nM BPA was observed between AA and AG/GG groups (n = 6 and 15, respectively. P = 0.031). However, no significant difference in ARNT2 expression was observed (P = 0.18). Conclusions/Significance This study advances our understanding of the specificity of low-dose BPA effects on human reproductive health. Our results suggest that genetic variability among individuals affects susceptibility to the effects of EEDs exposure as a potential cause of HS. PMID:23285176

  5. Comparing maternal genetic variation across two millennia reveals the demographic history of an ancient human population in southwest Turkey.

    PubMed

    Ottoni, Claudio; Rasteiro, Rita; Willet, Rinse; Claeys, Johan; Talloen, Peter; Van de Vijver, Katrien; Chikhi, Lounès; Poblome, Jeroen; Decorte, Ronny

    2016-02-01

    More than two decades of archaeological research at the site of Sagalassos, in southwest Turkey, resulted in the study of the former urban settlement in all its features. Originally settled in late Classical/early Hellenistic times, possibly from the later fifth century BCE onwards, the city of Sagalassos and its surrounding territory saw empires come and go. The Plague of Justinian in the sixth century CE, which is considered to have caused the death of up to a third of the population in Anatolia, and an earthquake in the seventh century CE, which is attested to have devastated many monuments in the city, may have severely affected the contemporary Sagalassos community. Human occupation continued, however, and Byzantine Sagalassos was eventually abandoned around 1200 CE. In order to investigate whether these historical events resulted in demographic changes across time, we compared the mitochondrial DNA variation of two population samples from Sagalassos (Roman and Middle Byzantine) and a modern sample from the nearby town of Ağlasun. Our analyses revealed no genetic discontinuity across two millennia in the region and Bayesian coalescence-based simulations indicated that a major population decline in the area coincided with the final abandonment of Sagalassos, rather than with the Plague of Justinian or the mentioned earthquake. PMID:26998313

  6. Comparing maternal genetic variation across two millennia reveals the demographic history of an ancient human population in southwest Turkey

    PubMed Central

    Ottoni, Claudio; Willet, Rinse; Claeys, Johan; Talloen, Peter; Van de Vijver, Katrien; Chikhi, Lounès; Poblome, Jeroen; Decorte, Ronny

    2016-01-01

    More than two decades of archaeological research at the site of Sagalassos, in southwest Turkey, resulted in the study of the former urban settlement in all its features. Originally settled in late Classical/early Hellenistic times, possibly from the later fifth century BCE onwards, the city of Sagalassos and its surrounding territory saw empires come and go. The Plague of Justinian in the sixth century CE, which is considered to have caused the death of up to a third of the population in Anatolia, and an earthquake in the seventh century CE, which is attested to have devastated many monuments in the city, may have severely affected the contemporary Sagalassos community. Human occupation continued, however, and Byzantine Sagalassos was eventually abandoned around 1200 CE. In order to investigate whether these historical events resulted in demographic changes across time, we compared the mitochondrial DNA variation of two population samples from Sagalassos (Roman and Middle Byzantine) and a modern sample from the nearby town of Ağlasun. Our analyses revealed no genetic discontinuity across two millennia in the region and Bayesian coalescence-based simulations indicated that a major population decline in the area coincided with the final abandonment of Sagalassos, rather than with the Plague of Justinian or the mentioned earthquake. PMID:26998313

  7. Characterisation of the influence of genetic variations on the enzyme activity of a recombinant human glycine N-acyltransferase.

    PubMed

    van der Sluis, Rencia; Badenhorst, Christoffel P S; van der Westhuizen, Francois H; van Dijk, Alberdina A

    2013-02-25

    Human glycine N-acyltransferase (human GLYAT) detoxifies a wide range of endogenous and xenobiotic metabolites, including benzoate and salicylate. Significant inter-individual variation exists in glycine conjugation capacity. The molecular basis for this variability is not known. To investigate the influence of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the GLYAT coding sequence on enzyme activity, we expressed and characterised a recombinant human GLYAT. Site-directed mutagenesis was used to generate six non-synonymous SNP variants of the enzyme (K16N; S17T; R131H; N156S; F168L; R199C). The variants were expressed, purified, and enzymatically characterised. The enzyme activities of the K16N, S17T and R131H variants were similar to that of the wild-type, whereas the N156S variant was more active, the F168L variant less active, and the R199C variant was inactive. We also generated an E227Q mutant, which lacks the catalytic residue proposed by Badenhorst et al. (2012). This mutant was inactive compared to the wild-type recombinant human GLYAT. A molecular model of human GLYAT containing coenzyme A (CoA) was generated which revealed that the inactivity of the R199C variant could be due to the substitution of the highly conserved Arg(199) and destabilisation of an α-loop-α motif which is important for substrate binding in the GNAT superfamily. The finding that SNP variations in the human GLYAT gene influence the kinetic properties of the enzyme may explain some of the inter-individual variation in glycine conjugation capacity, which is relevant to the metabolism of xenobiotics such as aspirin and the industrial solvent xylene, and to the treatment of some metabolic disorders. PMID:23237781

  8. A functional genetic variation of adenosine deaminase affects the duration and intensity of deep sleep in humans

    PubMed Central

    Rétey, J. V.; Adam, M.; Honegger, E.; Khatami, R.; Luhmann, U. F. O.; Jung, H. H.; Berger, W.; Landolt, H.-P.

    2005-01-01

    Slow, rhythmic oscillations (<5 Hz) in the sleep electroencephalogram may be a sign of synaptic plasticity occurring during sleep. The oscillations, referred to as slow-wave activity (SWA), reflect sleep need and sleep intensity. The amount of SWA is homeostatically regulated. It is enhanced after sleep loss and declines during sleep. Animal studies suggested that sleep need is genetically controlled, yet the physiological mechanisms remain unknown. Here we show in humans that a genetic variant of adenosine deaminase, which is associated with the reduced metabolism of adenosine to inosine, specifically enhances deep sleep and SWA during sleep. In contrast, a distinct polymorphism of the adenosine A2A receptor gene, which was associated with interindividual differences in anxiety symptoms after caffeine intake in healthy volunteers, affects the electroencephalogram during sleep and wakefulness in a non-state-specific manner. Our findings indicate a direct role of adenosine in human sleep homeostasis. Moreover, our data suggest that genetic variability in the adenosinergic system contributes to the interindividual variability in brain electrical activity during sleep and wakefulness. PMID:16221767

  9. Genetic variation and its maintenance

    SciTech Connect

    Roberts, D.F.; De Stefano, G.F.

    1986-01-01

    This book contains several papers divided among three sections. The section titles are: Genetic Diversity--Its Dimensions; Genetic Diversity--Its Origin and Maintenance; and Genetic Diversity--Applications and Problems of Complex Characters.

  10. [Human genetics and ethics].

    PubMed

    Zergollern, L

    1990-01-01

    Many new problems and dilemmas have occurred in the practice of medical geneticists with the development of human genetics and its subdisciplines--molecular genetics, ethic genetics and juridical genetics. Devoid of the possibility to get adequate education, genetic informer or better to say, counsellor, although a scientist and a professional who has already formed his ethic attitudes, often finds himself in a dilemma when he has to decide whether a procedure made possible by progress of science is ethical or not. Thus, due to different attitudes, same decision is ethical for some, while for the others it is not. Ethic committees are groups of moral and good people trying to find an objective approach to certain genetic and ethic problems. There are more and more ethically unanswered questions in modern human genetics, and particularly in medical genetics. Medical geneticist-ethicist still encounters numerous problems in his work. These are, for example, experiments with human gametes and embryos, possibilities of hybridization of human gametes with animal gametes, in vitro fertilization, detection of heterozygotes and homozygotes for monogene diseases. early detection of chromosomopathies, substitute mothers, homo and hetero insemination, transplantation of fetal and cadeveric organs, uncontrolled consumption of alcohol and drugs, environmental pollution, etc. It is almost impossible to create a single attitude which shall be shared by all those engaged in human health protection. Therefore, it is best to have a neutral eugenetic attitude which allows free ethical choice of each individual, in any case, for the well-being of man. PMID:2366624

  11. Genetic Variation among Staphylococcus aureus Strains from Bovine Milk and Their Relevance to Methicillin-Resistant Isolates from Humans

    PubMed Central

    Hata, Eiji; Katsuda, Ken; Kobayashi, Hideki; Uchida, Ikuo; Tanaka, Kiyoshi; Eguchi, Masashi

    2010-01-01

    In genetic analysis of bovine Staphylococcus aureus isolates that are recognized as an important pathogenic bacterium in bovine mastitis, multilocus sequence typing (MLST) showed strong correlation to the results of pulsed-field gel electrophoresis, coa PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP), spa typing, and the coagulase serotyping method. According to MLST results, strains derived from sequence type 97 (ST97) and ST705 were suggested as not only dominant bovine S. aureus lineages in Japan but also pandemic bovine S. aureus lineages. Although both lineages seem to be distantly related to each other by phylogenetic analysis, both had common characteristics, i.e., lukM/lukF′-PV and coagulase serotype VI. These characteristics were very rare among minor bovine strains and human strains and may contribute to the host specificity of these lineages. Four methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) isolates were first confirmed from bovine milk in Japan; these isolates showed geno- and serotypes that were identical or similar to those of human MRSA isolates in Japan (ST5, staphylococcal cassette chromosome mec type II [SCCmec II], Spa type t002 or t375, and coagulase serotype II, and ST89, SCCmec IIIa, Spa type t5266, and coagulase serotype I). ST5 and ST89 are uncommon among bovine isolates in the world, whereas these STs are common among human MRSA isolates in Japan. PMID:20392913

  12. Genetic Variation in the Human Brain Dopamine System Influences Motor Learning and Its Modulation by L-Dopa

    PubMed Central

    Pearson-Fuhrhop, Kristin M.; Minton, Brian; Acevedo, Daniel; Shahbaba, Babak; Cramer, Steven C.

    2013-01-01

    Dopamine is important to learning and plasticity. Dopaminergic drugs are the focus of many therapies targeting the motor system, where high inter-individual differences in response are common. The current study examined the hypothesis that genetic variation in the dopamine system is associated with significant differences in motor learning, brain plasticity, and the effects of the dopamine precursor L-Dopa. Skilled motor learning and motor cortex plasticity were assessed using a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover design in 50 healthy adults during two study weeks, one with placebo and one with L-Dopa. The influence of five polymorphisms with established effects on dopamine neurotransmission was summed using a gene score, with higher scores corresponding to higher dopaminergic neurotransmission. Secondary hypotheses examined each polymorphism individually. While training on placebo, higher gene scores were associated with greater motor learning (p = .03). The effect of L-Dopa on learning varied with the gene score (gene score*drug interaction, p = .008): participants with lower gene scores, and thus lower endogenous dopaminergic neurotransmission, showed the largest learning improvement with L-Dopa relative to placebo (p<.0001), while L-Dopa had a detrimental effect in participants with higher gene scores (p = .01). Motor cortex plasticity, assessed via transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), also showed a gene score*drug interaction (p = .02). Individually, DRD2/ANKK1 genotype was significantly associated with motor learning (p = .02) and its modulation by L-Dopa (p<.0001), but not with any TMS measures. However, none of the individual polymorphisms explained the full constellation of findings associated with the gene score. These results suggest that genetic variation in the dopamine system influences learning and its modulation by L-Dopa. A polygene score explains differences in L-Dopa effects on learning and plasticity

  13. Host Genetic Control of the Microbiome in Humans and Maise or Relating Host Genetic Variation to the Microbiome (2011 JGI User Meeting)

    ScienceCinema

    Ley, Ruth [Cornell University

    2011-06-03

    The U.S. Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute (JGI) invited scientists interested in the application of genomics to bioenergy and environmental issues, as well as all current and prospective users and collaborators, to attend the annual DOE JGI Genomics of Energy & Environment Meeting held March 22-24, 2011 in Walnut Creek, Calif. The emphasis of this meeting was on the genomics of renewable energy strategies, carbon cycling, environmental gene discovery, and engineering of fuel-producing organisms. The meeting features presentations by leading scientists advancing these topics. Ruth Ley of Cornell University gives a presentation on "Relating Host Genetic Variation to the Microbiome" at the 6th annual Genomics of Energy & Environment Meeting on March 23, 2011.

  14. Host Genetic Control of the Microbiome in Humans and Maise or Relating Host Genetic Variation to the Microbiome (2011 JGI User Meeting)

    SciTech Connect

    Ley, Ruth

    2011-03-23

    The U.S. Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute (JGI) invited scientists interested in the application of genomics to bioenergy and environmental issues, as well as all current and prospective users and collaborators, to attend the annual DOE JGI Genomics of Energy & Environment Meeting held March 22-24, 2011 in Walnut Creek, Calif. The emphasis of this meeting was on the genomics of renewable energy strategies, carbon cycling, environmental gene discovery, and engineering of fuel-producing organisms. The meeting features presentations by leading scientists advancing these topics. Ruth Ley of Cornell University gives a presentation on "Relating Host Genetic Variation to the Microbiome" at the 6th annual Genomics of Energy & Environment Meeting on March 23, 2011.

  15. P450 GENETIC VARIATION: IMPLICATIONS FOR ENVIRONMENTAL AND WORKPLACE EXPOSURE

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Cytochrome P450 array detoxifies many chemicals by catalyzing the conversion of mostly hydrophobic chemicals into more hydrophilic forms that can subsequently be excreted by the body. Human genetic variation in the genes for these enzymes produces wide variations in the abili...

  16. Genome-Wide Associations between Genetic and Epigenetic Variation Influence mRNA Expression and Insulin Secretion in Human Pancreatic Islets

    PubMed Central

    Olsson, Anders H.; Volkov, Petr; Bacos, Karl; Dayeh, Tasnim; Hall, Elin; Nilsson, Emma A.; Ladenvall, Claes; Rönn, Tina; Ling, Charlotte

    2014-01-01

    Genetic and epigenetic mechanisms may interact and together affect biological processes and disease development. However, most previous studies have investigated genetic and epigenetic mechanisms independently, and studies examining their interactions throughout the human genome are lacking. To identify genetic loci that interact with the epigenome, we performed the first genome-wide DNA methylation quantitative trait locus (mQTL) analysis in human pancreatic islets. We related 574,553 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) with genome-wide DNA methylation data of 468,787 CpG sites targeting 99% of RefSeq genes in islets from 89 donors. We identified 67,438 SNP-CpG pairs in cis, corresponding to 36,783 SNPs (6.4% of tested SNPs) and 11,735 CpG sites (2.5% of tested CpGs), and 2,562 significant SNP-CpG pairs in trans, corresponding to 1,465 SNPs (0.3% of tested SNPs) and 383 CpG sites (0.08% of tested CpGs), showing significant associations after correction for multiple testing. These include reported diabetes loci, e.g. ADCY5, KCNJ11, HLA-DQA1, INS, PDX1 and GRB10. CpGs of significant cis-mQTLs were overrepresented in the gene body and outside of CpG islands. Follow-up analyses further identified mQTLs associated with gene expression and insulin secretion in human islets. Causal inference test (CIT) identified SNP-CpG pairs where DNA methylation in human islets is the potential mediator of the genetic association with gene expression or insulin secretion. Functional analyses further demonstrated that identified candidate genes (GPX7, GSTT1 and SNX19) directly affect key biological processes such as proliferation and apoptosis in pancreatic β-cells. Finally, we found direct correlations between DNA methylation of 22,773 (4.9%) CpGs with mRNA expression of 4,876 genes, where 90% of the correlations were negative when CpGs were located in the region surrounding transcription start site. Our study demonstrates for the first time how genome-wide genetic and epigenetic

  17. Genetic variation and dopamine D2 receptor availability: a systematic review and meta-analysis of human in vivo molecular imaging studies

    PubMed Central

    Gluskin, B S; Mickey, B J

    2016-01-01

    The D2 dopamine receptor mediates neuropsychiatric symptoms and is a target of pharmacotherapy. Inter-individual variation of D2 receptor density is thought to influence disease risk and pharmacological response. Numerous molecular imaging studies have tested whether common genetic variants influence D2 receptor binding potential (BP) in humans, but demonstration of robust effects has been limited by small sample sizes. We performed a systematic search of published human in vivo molecular imaging studies to estimate effect sizes of common genetic variants on striatal D2 receptor BP. We identified 21 studies examining 19 variants in 11 genes. The most commonly studied variant was a single-nucleotide polymorphism in ANKK1 (rs1800497, Glu713Lys, also called ‘Taq1A'). Fixed- and random-effects meta-analyses of this variant (5 studies, 194 subjects total) revealed that striatal BP was significantly and robustly lower among carriers of the minor allele (Lys713) relative to major allele homozygotes. The weighted standardized mean difference was −0.57 under the fixed-effect model (95% confidence interval=(−0.87, −0.27), P=0.0002). The normal relationship between rs1800497 and BP was not apparent among subjects with neuropsychiatric diseases. Significant associations with baseline striatal D2 receptor BP have been reported for four DRD2 variants (rs1079597, rs1076560, rs6277 and rs1799732) and a PER2 repeat polymorphism, but none have yet been tested in more than two independent samples. Our findings resolve apparent discrepancies in the literature and establish that rs1800497 robustly influences striatal D2 receptor availability. This genetic variant is likely to contribute to important individual differences in human striatal function, neuropsychiatric disease risk and pharmacological response. PMID:26926883

  18. Personalized medicine and human genetic diversity.

    PubMed

    Lu, Yi-Fan; Goldstein, David B; Angrist, Misha; Cavalleri, Gianpiero

    2014-09-01

    Human genetic diversity has long been studied both to understand how genetic variation influences risk of disease and infer aspects of human evolutionary history. In this article, we review historical and contemporary views of human genetic diversity, the rare and common mutations implicated in human disease susceptibility, and the relevance of genetic diversity to personalized medicine. First, we describe the development of thought about diversity through the 20th century and through more modern studies including genome-wide association studies (GWAS) and next-generation sequencing. We introduce several examples, such as sickle cell anemia and Tay-Sachs disease that are caused by rare mutations and are more frequent in certain geographical populations, and common treatment responses that are caused by common variants, such as hepatitis C infection. We conclude with comments about the continued relevance of human genetic diversity in medical genetics and personalized medicine more generally. PMID:25059740

  19. Personalized Medicine and Human Genetic Diversity

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Yi-Fan; Goldstein, David B.; Angrist, Misha; Cavalleri, Gianpiero

    2014-01-01

    Human genetic diversity has long been studied both to understand how genetic variation influences risk of disease and infer aspects of human evolutionary history. In this article, we review historical and contemporary views of human genetic diversity, the rare and common mutations implicated in human disease susceptibility, and the relevance of genetic diversity to personalized medicine. First, we describe the development of thought about diversity through the 20th century and through more modern studies including genome-wide association studies (GWAS) and next-generation sequencing. We introduce several examples, such as sickle cell anemia and Tay–Sachs disease that are caused by rare mutations and are more frequent in certain geographical populations, and common treatment responses that are caused by common variants, such as hepatitis C infection. We conclude with comments about the continued relevance of human genetic diversity in medical genetics and personalized medicine more generally. PMID:25059740

  20. Bioenergetics in human evolution and disease: implications for the origins of biological complexity and the missing genetic variation of common diseases

    PubMed Central

    Wallace, Douglas C.

    2013-01-01

    Two major inconsistencies exist in the current neo-Darwinian evolutionary theory that random chromosomal mutations acted on by natural selection generate new species. First, natural selection does not require the evolution of ever increasing complexity, yet this is the hallmark of biology. Second, human chromosomal DNA sequence variation is predominantly either neutral or deleterious and is insufficient to provide the variation required for speciation or for predilection to common diseases. Complexity is explained by the continuous flow of energy through the biosphere that drives the accumulation of nucleic acids and information. Information then encodes complex forms. In animals, energy flow is primarily mediated by mitochondria whose maternally inherited mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) codes for key genes for energy metabolism. In mammals, the mtDNA has a very high mutation rate, but the deleterious mutations are removed by an ovarian selection system. Hence, new mutations that subtly alter energy metabolism are continuously introduced into the species, permitting adaptation to regional differences in energy environments. Therefore, the most phenotypically significant gene variants arise in the mtDNA, are regional, and permit animals to occupy peripheral energy environments where rarer nuclear DNA (nDNA) variants can accumulate, leading to speciation. The neutralist–selectionist debate is then a consequence of mammals having two different evolutionary strategies: a fast mtDNA strategy for intra-specific radiation and a slow nDNA strategy for speciation. Furthermore, the missing genetic variation for common human diseases is primarily mtDNA variation plus regional nDNA variants, both of which have been missed by large, inter-population association studies. PMID:23754818

  1. Genetic variation in natural honeybee populations, Apis mellifera capensis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hepburn, Randall; Neumann, Peter; Radloff, Sarah E.

    2004-09-01

    Genetic variation in honeybee, Apis mellifera, populations can be considerably influenced by breeding and commercial introductions, especially in areas with abundant beekeeping. However, in southern Africa apiculture is based on the capture of wild swarms, and queen rearing is virtually absent. Moreover, the introduction of European subspecies constantly failed in the Cape region. We therefore hypothesize a low human impact on genetic variation in populations of Cape honeybees, Apis mellifera capensis. A novel solution to studying genetic variation in honeybee populations based on thelytokous worker reproduction is applied to test this hypothesis. Environmental effects on metrical morphological characters of the phenotype are separated to obtain a genetic residual component. The genetic residuals are then re-calculated as coefficients of genetic variation. Characters measured included hair length on the abdomen, width and length of wax plate, and three wing angles. The data show for the first time that genetic variation in Cape honeybee populations is independent of beekeeping density and probably reflects naturally occurring processes such as gene flow due to topographic and climatic variation on a microscale.

  2. Networks of spatial genetic variation across species

    PubMed Central

    Fortuna, Miguel A.; Albaladejo, Rafael G.; Fernández, Laura; Aparicio, Abelardo; Bascompte, Jordi

    2009-01-01

    Spatial patterns of genetic variation provide information central to many ecological, evolutionary, and conservation questions. This spatial variability has traditionally been analyzed through summary statistics between pairs of populations, therefore missing the simultaneous influence of all populations. More recently, a network approach has been advocated to overcome these limitations. This network approach has been applied to a few cases limited to a single species at a time. The question remains whether similar patterns of spatial genetic variation and similar functional roles for specific patches are obtained for different species. Here we study the networks of genetic variation of four Mediterranean woody plant species inhabiting the same habitat patches in a highly fragmented forest mosaic in Southern Spain. Three of the four species show a similar pattern of genetic variation with well-defined modules or groups of patches holding genetically similar populations. These modules can be thought of as the long-sought-after, evolutionarily significant units or management units. The importance of each patch for the cohesion of the entire network, though, is quite different across species. This variation creates a tremendous challenge for the prioritization of patches to conserve the genetic variation of multispecies assemblages. PMID:19861546

  3. DNA methylation analysis of multiple tissues from newborn twins reveals both genetic and intrauterine components to variation in the human neonatal epigenome.

    PubMed

    Ollikainen, Miina; Smith, Katherine R; Joo, Eric Ji-Hoon; Ng, Hong Kiat; Andronikos, Roberta; Novakovic, Boris; Abdul Aziz, Nur Khairunnisa; Carlin, John B; Morley, Ruth; Saffery, Richard; Craig, Jeffrey M

    2010-11-01

    Mounting evidence from both animal and human studies suggests that the epigenome is in constant drift over the life course in response to stochastic and environmental factors. In humans, this has been highlighted by a small number of studies that have demonstrated discordant DNA methylation patterns in adolescent or adult monozygotic (MZ) twin pairs. However, to date, it remains unclear when such differences emerge, and how prevalent they are across different tissues. To address this, we examined the methylation of four differentially methylated regions associated with the IGF2/H19 locus in multiple birth tissues derived from 91 twin pairs: 56 MZ and 35 dizygotic (DZ). Tissues included cord blood-derived mononuclear cells and granulocytes, human umbilical vein endothelial cells, buccal epithelial cells and placental tissue. Considerable variation in DNA methylation was observed between tissues and between unrelated individuals. Most interestingly, methylation discordance was also present within twin pairs, with DZ pairs showing greater discordance than MZ pairs. These data highlight the variable contribution of both intrauterine environmental exposures and underlying genetic factors to the establishment of the neonatal epigenome of different tissues and confirm the intrauterine period as a sensitive time for the establishment of epigenetic variability in humans. This has implications for the effects of maternal environment on the development of the newborn epigenome and supports an epigenetic mechanism for the previously described phenomenon of 'fetal programming' of disease risk. PMID:20699328

  4. Genetic variation in walnuts (Juglans regia, j. sigillata and Juglandaceae) species distinctions, human impacts, and the conservation of agrobiodiversity in yunnan, china

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Walnuts are a major crop of many countries and mostly cultivated in large-scale plantations with few cultivars. Landraces provide important genetic reservoirs; thus, understanding factors influencing the geographic distribution of genetic variation in crop resources is a fundamental goal of agrobiod...

  5. DNA methylation contributes to natural human variation

    PubMed Central

    Heyn, Holger; Moran, Sebastian; Hernando-Herraez, Irene; Sayols, Sergi; Gomez, Antonio; Sandoval, Juan; Monk, Dave; Hata, Kenichiro; Marques-Bonet, Tomas; Wang, Liewei; Esteller, Manel

    2013-01-01

    DNA methylation patterns are important for establishing cell, tissue, and organism phenotypes, but little is known about their contribution to natural human variation. To determine their contribution to variability, we have generated genome-scale DNA methylation profiles of three human populations (Caucasian-American, African-American, and Han Chinese-American) and examined the differentially methylated CpG sites. The distinctly methylated genes identified suggest an influence of DNA methylation on phenotype differences, such as susceptibility to certain diseases and pathogens, and response to drugs and environmental agents. DNA methylation differences can be partially traced back to genetic variation, suggesting that differentially methylated CpG sites serve as evolutionarily established mediators between the genetic code and phenotypic variability. Notably, one-third of the DNA methylation differences were not associated with any genetic variation, suggesting that variation in population-specific sites takes place at the genetic and epigenetic levels, highlighting the contribution of epigenetic modification to natural human variation. PMID:23908385

  6. Nonautosomal genetic variation in carotenoid coloration.

    PubMed

    Evans, Simon R; Schielzeth, Holger; Forstmeier, Wolfgang; Sheldon, Ben C; Husby, Arild

    2014-09-01

    Carotenoid-based coloration plays an important role in signaling, is often sexually dimorphic, and is potentially subject to directional and/or sex-specific selection. To understand the evolutionary dynamics of such color traits, it is essential to quantify patterns of inheritance, yet nonautosomal sources of genetic variation are easily overlooked by classical heritability analyses. Carotenoid metabolism has recently been linked to mitochondria, highlighting the potential for color variation to be explained by cytoplasmically inherited factors. In this study, we used quantitative genetic animal models to estimate the importance of mitochondrial and sex chromosome-linked sources of genetic variation in coloration in two songbird populations in which dietary carotenoids are either unmodified (great tit plumage) or metabolized into alternative color forms (zebra finch beak). We found no significant Z-linked genetic variance in great tit plumage coloration, while zebra finch beak coloration exhibited significant W linkage and cytoplasmic inheritance. Our results support cytoplasmic inheritance of color in the zebra finch, a trait based on endogenously metabolized carotenoids, and demonstrate the potential for nonautosomal sources to account for a considerable share of genetic variation in coloration. Although often overlooked, such nonautosomal genetic variation exhibits sex-dependent patterns of inheritance and potentially influences the evolution of sexual dichromatism. PMID:25141146

  7. High Points of Human Genetics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stern, Curt

    1975-01-01

    Discusses such high points of human genetics as the study of chromosomes, somatic cell hybrids, the population formula: the Hardy-Weinberg Law, biochemical genetics, the single-active X Theory, behavioral genetics and finally how genetics can serve humanity. (BR)

  8. The landscape of human STR variation

    PubMed Central

    Willems, Thomas; Gymrek, Melissa; Highnam, Gareth; Mittelman, David

    2014-01-01

    Short tandem repeats are among the most polymorphic loci in the human genome. These loci play a role in the etiology of a range of genetic diseases and have been frequently utilized in forensics, population genetics, and genetic genealogy. Despite this plethora of applications, little is known about the variation of most STRs in the human population. Here, we report the largest-scale analysis of human STR variation to date. We collected information for nearly 700,000 STR loci across more than 1000 individuals in Phase 1 of the 1000 Genomes Project. Extensive quality controls show that reliable allelic spectra can be obtained for close to 90% of the STR loci in the genome. We utilize this call set to analyze determinants of STR variation, assess the human reference genome’s representation of STR alleles, find STR loci with common loss-of-function alleles, and obtain initial estimates of the linkage disequilibrium between STRs and common SNPs. Overall, these analyses further elucidate the scale of genetic variation beyond classical point mutations. PMID:25135957

  9. The landscape of human STR variation.

    PubMed

    Willems, Thomas; Gymrek, Melissa; Highnam, Gareth; Mittelman, David; Erlich, Yaniv

    2014-11-01

    Short tandem repeats are among the most polymorphic loci in the human genome. These loci play a role in the etiology of a range of genetic diseases and have been frequently utilized in forensics, population genetics, and genetic genealogy. Despite this plethora of applications, little is known about the variation of most STRs in the human population. Here, we report the largest-scale analysis of human STR variation to date. We collected information for nearly 700,000 STR loci across more than 1000 individuals in Phase 1 of the 1000 Genomes Project. Extensive quality controls show that reliable allelic spectra can be obtained for close to 90% of the STR loci in the genome. We utilize this call set to analyze determinants of STR variation, assess the human reference genome's representation of STR alleles, find STR loci with common loss-of-function alleles, and obtain initial estimates of the linkage disequilibrium between STRs and common SNPs. Overall, these analyses further elucidate the scale of genetic variation beyond classical point mutations. PMID:25135957

  10. American Society of Human Genetics

    MedlinePlus

    ... Research Awards August 9, 2016 Media Advisory: American Society of Human Genetics 2016 Annual Meeting July 26, ... McKusick Leadership Award June 30, 2016 The American Society of Human Genetics, Incorporated 9650 Rockville Pike • Bethesda, ...

  11. Genetics for the Human Race

    SciTech Connect

    Myles Axton; Francis Collins; Charles Rotimi; Charmaine Royal; David Goldstein, Daniel Drell; Georgia Dunston; Rick Kittles; Lynn Jorde; Mildred Cho; Joanna Mountain; Ari Patrinos; Neil Risch; Shomarka Keita; Kenneth Kidd; Mark Shriver; Sarah Tishkoff

    2004-11-01

    This supplement has its origins on May 15, 2003, when the National Human Genome Center at Howard University held a small but important workshop in Washington DC. The workshop, Human Genome Variation and 'Race', and this special issue of Nature Genetics were proposed by scientists at Howard University and financially supported by the Genome Programs of the US Department of Energy, through its Office of Science; the Irving Harris Foundation; the National Institutes of Health, through the National Human Genome Research Institute; and Howard University. As summarized by Francis Collins, director of the National Human Genome Research Institute, the workshop focused on several key questions: ''What does the current body of scientific information say about the connections among race, ethnicity, genetics and health? What remains unknown? What additional research is needed? How can this information be applied to benefit human health? How might this information be applied in nonmedical settings? How can we adopt policies that will achieve beneficial societal outcomes?'' This supplement, supported by the Department of Energy through a grant to Howard University, contains articles based on the presentations at this workshop.

  12. GEMINI: Integrative Exploration of Genetic Variation and Genome Annotations

    PubMed Central

    Paila, Umadevi; Chapman, Brad A.; Kirchner, Rory; Quinlan, Aaron R.

    2013-01-01

    Modern DNA sequencing technologies enable geneticists to rapidly identify genetic variation among many human genomes. However, isolating the minority of variants underlying disease remains an important, yet formidable challenge for medical genetics. We have developed GEMINI (GEnome MINIng), a flexible software package for exploring all forms of human genetic variation. Unlike existing tools, GEMINI integrates genetic variation with a diverse and adaptable set of genome annotations (e.g., dbSNP, ENCODE, UCSC, ClinVar, KEGG) into a unified database to facilitate interpretation and data exploration. Whereas other methods provide an inflexible set of variant filters or prioritization methods, GEMINI allows researchers to compose complex queries based on sample genotypes, inheritance patterns, and both pre-installed and custom genome annotations. GEMINI also provides methods for ad hoc queries and data exploration, a simple programming interface for custom analyses that leverage the underlying database, and both command line and graphical tools for common analyses. We demonstrate GEMINI's utility for exploring variation in personal genomes and family based genetic studies, and illustrate its ability to scale to studies involving thousands of human samples. GEMINI is designed for reproducibility and flexibility and our goal is to provide researchers with a standard framework for medical genomics. PMID:23874191

  13. Advances in human genetics

    SciTech Connect

    Harris, H.; Hirschhorn, K.

    1993-01-01

    This book has five chapters covering peroxisomal diseases, X-linked immunodeficiencies, genetic mutations affecting human lipoproteins and their receptors and enzymes, genetic aspects of cancer, and Gaucher disease. The chapter on peroxisomes covers their discovery, structure, functions, disorders, etc. The chapter on X-linked immunodeficiencies discusses such diseases as agammaglobulinemia, severe combined immunodeficiency, Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome, animal models, linkage analysis, etc. Apolipoprotein formation, synthesis, gene regulation, proteins, etc. are the main focus of chapter 3. The chapter on cancer covers such topics as oncogene mapping and the molecular characterization of some recessive oncogenes. Gaucher disease is covered from its diagnosis, classification, and prevention, to its organ system involvement and molecular biology.

  14. Genetic variation in the vasopressin receptor 1a gene (AVPR1A) associates with pair-bonding behavior in humans

    PubMed Central

    Walum, Hasse; Westberg, Lars; Henningsson, Susanne; Neiderhiser, Jenae M.; Reiss, David; Igl, Wilmar; Ganiban, Jody M.; Spotts, Erica L.; Pedersen, Nancy L.; Eriksson, Elias; Lichtenstein, Paul

    2008-01-01

    Pair-bonding has been suggested to be a critical factor in the evolutionary development of the social brain. The brain neuropeptide arginine vasopressin (AVP) exerts an important influence on pair-bonding behavior in voles. There is a strong association between a polymorphic repeat sequence in the 5′ flanking region of the gene (avpr1a) encoding one of the AVP receptor subtypes (V1aR), and proneness for monogamous behavior in males of this species. It is not yet known whether similar mechanisms are important also for human pair-bonding. Here, we report an association between one of the human AVPR1A repeat polymorphisms (RS3) and traits reflecting pair-bonding behavior in men, including partner bonding, perceived marital problems, and marital status, and show that the RS3 genotype of the males also affects marital quality as perceived by their spouses. These results suggest an association between a single gene and pair-bonding behavior in humans, and indicate that the well characterized influence of AVP on pair-bonding in voles may be of relevance also for humans. PMID:18765804

  15. Comprehensive variation discovery in single human genomes

    PubMed Central

    Weisenfeld, Neil I.; Yin, Shuangye; Sharpe, Ted; Lau, Bayo; Hegarty, Ryan; Holmes, Laurie; Sogoloff, Brian; Tabbaa, Diana; Williams, Louise; Russ, Carsten; Nusbaum, Chad; Lander, Eric S.; MacCallum, Iain; Jaffe, David B.

    2014-01-01

    Complete knowledge of the genetic variation in individual human genomes is a crucial foundation for understanding the etiology of disease. Genetic variation is typically characterized by sequencing individual genomes and comparing reads to a reference. Existing methods do an excellent job of detecting variants in approximately 90% of the human genome, however calling variants in the remaining 10% of the genome (largely low-complexity sequence and segmental duplications) is challenging. To improve variant calling, we developed a new algorithm, DISCOVAR, and examined its performance on improved, low-cost sequence data. Using a newly created reference set of variants from finished sequence of 103 randomly chosen Fosmids, we find that some standard variant call sets miss up to 25% of variants. We show that the combination of new methods and improved data increases sensitivity several-fold, with the greatest impact in challenging regions of the human genome. PMID:25326702

  16. Human Heredity: Genetic Mechanisms in Humans.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Blank, C. E.

    1988-01-01

    Discussed are some of the uncertainties in human genetic mechanisms that are often presented as dogma in Biology textbooks. Presented is a brief historical background and illustrations involving chromosome abnormality in humans and linkage studies in humans. (CW)

  17. Genetic Variation in GPX1 Is Associated with GPX1 Activity in a Comprehensive Analysis of Genetic Variations in Selenoenzyme Genes and Their Activity and Oxidative Stress in Humans12

    PubMed Central

    Takata, Yumie; King, Irena B.; Lampe, Johanna W.; Burk, Raymond F.; Hill, Kristina E.; Santella, Regina M.; Kristal, Alan R.; Duggan, David J.; Vaughan, Thomas L.; Peters, Ulrike

    2012-01-01

    Previous studies suggest some effects of selenium on risk of several chronic diseases, which may be mediated through a small number of selenoenzymes with antioxidant properties. In this cross-sectional analysis of 195 participants from the Seattle Barrett’s Esophagus Study who were free of esophageal cancer at the time of blood draw, we examined whether the number of the minor alleles in 26 tagging single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) of five selenoenzyme genes [i.e., glutathione peroxidase 1–4 (GPX1–4) and selenoprotein P (SEPP1)] was associated with activity of GPX1 in white blood cells and GPX3 in plasma, and concentrations of SEPP1 and markers of oxidative stress [malondialdehyde (MDA) and protein carbonyl content] in plasma. At the gene level, associations were observed between overall variation in GPX1 and GPX1 activity (P = 0.02) as well as between overall variation in GPX2 and SEPP1 concentrations (P = 0.03). By individual SNP, two variants in GPX1 (rs8179164 and rs1987628) showed a suggestive association with GPX1 activity (P = 0.10 and 0.08, respectively) and two GPX2 variants (rs4902346 and rs2071566) were associated with SEPP1 concentration (P = 0.004 and 0.002, respectively). Furthermore, two SNP in the SEPP1 gene (rs230813 and rs230819) were associated with MDA concentrations (P = 0.03 and 0.02, respectively). Overall, our study supports the hypothesis that common genetic variants in selenoenzymes affect their activity. PMID:22259188

  18. Thoughts on Human Genetics Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Epstein, Charles J.

    1980-01-01

    The director of the Birth Defects Center at the University of California at San Francisco addresses the reasons for developing good ways of teaching human genetics. Genetic counseling is discussed within the context of several case histories. (SA)

  19. Research strategies in human behaviour genetics.

    PubMed Central

    Vogel, F

    1987-01-01

    Genetic variation influencing normal and abnormal human behaviour has been studied since Francis Galton's work in the second half of the 19th century. However, most of these studies have consisted of biometric analysis of complex phenotypes; the genotype has been treated as a 'black box'. The concepts and analytical tools of modern genetics have rarely been used. In this lecture, some examples are given of approaches combining tools from genetics, cytogenetics, and various fields of neurobiology which might help in the analysis of genetic mechanisms leading, in interaction with the environment, to individual differences in behaviour, mental performance, and susceptibility to mental diseases. PMID:2883319

  20. Genetic architecture of natural variation in Drosophila melanogaster aggressive behavior

    PubMed Central

    Shorter, John; Couch, Charlene; Huang, Wen; Carbone, Mary Anna; Peiffer, Jason; Anholt, Robert R. H.; Mackay, Trudy F. C.

    2015-01-01

    Aggression is an evolutionarily conserved complex behavior essential for survival and the organization of social hierarchies. With the exception of genetic variants associated with bioamine signaling, which have been implicated in aggression in many species, the genetic basis of natural variation in aggression is largely unknown. Drosophila melanogaster is a favorable model system for exploring the genetic basis of natural variation in aggression. Here, we performed genome-wide association analyses using the inbred, sequenced lines of the Drosophila melanogaster Genetic Reference Panel (DGRP) and replicate advanced intercross populations derived from the most and least aggressive DGRP lines. We identified genes that have been previously implicated in aggressive behavior as well as many novel loci, including gustatory receptor 63a (Gr63a), which encodes a subunit of the receptor for CO2, and genes associated with development and function of the nervous system. Although genes from the two association analyses were largely nonoverlapping, they mapped onto a genetic interaction network inferred from an analysis of pairwise epistasis in the DGRP. We used mutations and RNAi knock-down alleles to functionally validate 79% of the candidate genes and 75% of the candidate epistatic interactions tested. Epistasis for aggressive behavior causes cryptic genetic variation in the DGRP that is revealed by changing allele frequencies in the outbred populations derived from extreme DGRP lines. This phenomenon may pertain to other fitness traits and species, with implications for evolution, applied breeding, and human genetics. PMID:26100892

  1. The Genetics of Canine Skull Shape Variation

    PubMed Central

    Schoenebeck, Jeffrey J.; Ostrander, Elaine A.

    2013-01-01

    A dog’s craniofacial diversity is the result of continual human intervention in natural selection, a process that began tens of thousands of years ago. To date, we know little of the genetic underpinnings and developmental mechanisms that make dog skulls so morphologically plastic. In this Perspectives, we discuss the origins of dog skull shapes in terms of history and biology and highlight recent advances in understanding the genetics of canine skull shapes. Of particular interest are those molecular genetic changes that are associated with the development of distinct breeds. PMID:23396475

  2. Repeat variation in the human PER2 gene as a new genetic marker associated with cocaine addiction and brain dopamine D2 receptor availability

    PubMed Central

    Shumay, E; Fowler, J S; Wang, G-J; Logan, J; Alia-Klein, N; Goldstein, R Z; Maloney, T; Wong, C; Volkow, N D

    2012-01-01

    Low dopamine D2 receptor (D2R) levels in the striatum are consistently reported in cocaine abusers; inter-individual variations in the degree of the decrease suggest a modulating effect of genetic makeup on vulnerability to addiction. The PER2 (Period 2) gene belongs to the clock genes family of circadian regulators; circadian oscillations of PER2 expression in the striatum was modulated by dopamine through D2Rs. Aberrant periodicity of PER2 contributes to the incidence and severity of various brain disorders, including drug addiction. Here we report a newly identified variable number tandem repeat (VNTR) polymorphism in the human PER2 gene (VNTR in the third intron). We found significant differences in the VNTR alleles prevalence across ethnic groups so that the major allele (4 repeats (4R)) is over-represented in non-African population (4R homozygosity is 88%), but not in African Americans (homozygosity 51%). We also detected a biased PER2 genotype distribution among healthy controls and cocaine-addicted individuals. In African Americans, the proportion of 4R/three repeat (3R) carriers in healthy controls is much lower than that in cocaine abusers (23% vs 39%, P=0.004), whereas among non-Africans most 3R/4R heterozygotes are healthy controls (10.5% vs 2.5%, P=0.04). Analysis of striatal D2R availability measured with positron emission tomography and [11C]raclopride revealed higher levels of D2R in carriers of 4R/4R genotype (P<0.01). Taken together, these results provide preliminary evidence for the role of the PER2 gene in regulating striatal D2R availability in the human brain and in vulnerability for cocaine addiction. PMID:22832851

  3. Pharmacogenetics and human genetic polymorphisms.

    PubMed

    Daly, Ann K

    2010-08-01

    The term pharmacogenetics was first used in the late 1950s and can be defined as the study of genetic factors affecting drug response. Prior to formal use of this term, there was already clinical data available in relation to variable patient responses to the drugs isoniazid, primaquine and succinylcholine. The subject area developed rapidly, particularly with regard to genetic factors affecting drug disposition. There is now comprehensive understanding of the molecular basis for variable drug metabolism by the cytochromes P450 and also for variable glucuronidation, acetylation and methylation of certain drugs. Some of this knowledge has already been translated to the clinic. The molecular basis of variation in drug targets, such as receptors and enzymes, is generally less well understood, although there is consistent evidence that polymorphisms in the genes encoding the beta-adrenergic receptors and the enzyme vitamin K epoxide reductase is of clinical importance. The genetic basis of rare idiosyncratic adverse drug reactions had also been examined. Susceptibility to reactions affecting skin and liver appears to be determined in part by the HLA (human leucocyte antigen) genotype, whereas reactions affecting the heart and muscle may be determined by polymorphisms in genes encoding ion channels and transporters respectively. Genome-wide association studies are increasingly being used to study drug response and susceptibility to adverse drug reactions, resulting in identification of some novel pharmacogenetic associations. PMID:20626352

  4. Mapping genetic influences on human brain structure.

    PubMed

    Thompson, Paul; Cannon, Tyrone D; Toga, Arthur W

    2002-01-01

    Recent advances in brain imaging and genetics have empowered the mapping of genetic and environmental influences on the human brain. These techniques shed light on the 'nature/nurture' debate, revealing how genes determine individual differences in intelligence quotient (IQ) or risk for disease. They visualize which aspects of brain structure and function are heritable, and to what degree, linking these features with behavioral or cognitive traits or disease phenotypes. In genetically transmitted disorders such as schizophrenia, patterns of brain structure can be associated with increased disease liability, and sites can be mapped where non-genetic triggers may initiate disease. We recently developed a large-scale computational brain atlas, including data components from the Finnish Twin registry, to store information on individual variations in brain structure and their heritability. Algorithms from random field theory, anatomical modeling, and population genetics were combined to detect a genetic continuum in which brain structure is heavily genetically determined in some areas but not others. These algorithmic advances motivate studies of disease in which the normative atlas acts as a quantitative reference for the heritability of structural differences and deficits in patient populations. The resulting genetic brain maps isolate biological markers for inherited traits and disease susceptibility, which may serve as targets for genetic linkage and association studies. Computational methods from brain imaging and genetics can be fruitfully merged, to shed light on the inheritance of personality differences and behavioral traits, and the genetic transmission of diseases that affect the human brain. PMID:12553492

  5. Functional Analysis of Genetic Variation in Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT): Effects on mRNA, Protein, and Enzyme Activity in Postmortem Human Brain

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Jingshan; Lipska, Barbara K.; Halim, Nader; Ma, Quang D.; Matsumoto, Mitsuyuki; Melhem, Samer; Kolachana, Bhaskar S.; Hyde, Thomas M.; Herman, Mary M.; Apud, Jose; Egan, Michael F.; Kleinman, Joel E.; Weinberger, Daniel R.

    2004-01-01

    Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) is a key enzyme in the elimination of dopamine in the prefrontal cortex of the human brain. Genetic variation in the COMT gene (MIM 116790) has been associated with altered prefrontal cortex function and higher risk for schizophrenia, but the specific alleles and their functional implications have been controversial. We analyzed the effects of several single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) within COMT on mRNA expression levels (using reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction analysis), protein levels (using Western blot analysis), and enzyme activity (using catechol methylation) in a large sample (n = 108) of postmortem human prefrontal cortex tissue, which predominantly expresses the -membrane-bound isoform. A common coding SNP, Val158Met (rs4680), significantly affected protein abundance and enzyme activity but not mRNA expression levels, suggesting that differences in protein integrity account for the difference in enzyme activity between alleles. A SNP in intron 1 (rs737865) and a SNP in the 3′ flanking region (rs165599)—both of which have been reported to contribute to allelic expression differences and to be associated with schizophrenia as part of a haplotype with Val—had no effect on mRNA expression levels, protein immunoreactivity, or enzyme activity. In lymphocytes from 47 subjects, we confirmed a similar effect on enzyme activity in samples with the Val/Met genotype but no effect in samples with the intron 1 or 3′ SNPs. Separate analyses revealed that the subject's sex, as well as the presence of a SNP in the P2 promoter region (rs2097603), had small effects on COMT enzyme activity. Using site-directed mutagenesis of mouse COMT cDNA, followed by in vitro translation, we found that the conversion of Leu at the homologous position into Met or Val progressively and significantly diminished enzyme activity. Thus, although we cannot exclude a more complex genetic basis for functional effects of COMT, Val is a

  6. Genetic Mapping in Human Disease

    PubMed Central

    Altshuler, David; Daly, Mark J.; Lander, Eric S.

    2009-01-01

    Genetic mapping provides a powerful approach to identify genes and biological processes underlying any trait influenced by inheritance, including human diseases. We discuss the intellectual foundations of genetic mapping of Mendelian and complex traits in humans, examine lessons emerging from linkage analysis of Mendelian diseases and genome-wide association studies of common diseases, and discuss questions and challenges that lie ahead. PMID:18988837

  7. Challenges and complexities in estimating both the functional impact and the disease risk associated with the extensive genetic variation in human DNA repair genes.

    PubMed

    Mohrenweiser, Harvey W; Wilson, David M; Jones, Irene M

    2003-05-15

    Individual risk and the population incidence of disease result from the interaction of genetic susceptibility and exposure. DNA repair is an example of a cellular process where genetic variation in families with extreme predisposition is documented to be associated with high disease likelihood, including syndromes of premature aging and cancer. Although the identification and characterization of new genes or variants in cancer families continues to be important, the focus of this paper is the current status of efforts to define the impact of polymorphic amino acid substitutions in DNA repair genes on individual and population cancer risk. There is increasing evidence that mild reductions in DNA repair capacity, assumed to be the consequence of common genetic variation, affect cancer predisposition. The extensive variation being found in the coding regions of DNA repair genes and the large number of genes in each of the major repair pathways results in complex genotypes with potential to impact cancer risk in the general population. The implications of this complexity for molecular epidemiology studies, as well as concepts that may make these challenges more manageable, are discussed. The concepts include both experimental and computational approaches that could be employed to develop predictors of disease susceptibility based on DNA repair genotype, focusing initially on studies to assess functional impact on individual proteins and pathways and then on molecular epidemiology studies to assess exposure-dependent health risk. In closing, we raise some of the non-technical challenges to the utilization of the full richness of the genetic variation to reduce disease occurrence and ultimately improve health care. PMID:12714187

  8. Identifying environmental correlates of intraspecific genetic variation.

    PubMed

    Harrisson, K A; Yen, J D L; Pavlova, A; Rourke, M L; Gilligan, D; Ingram, B A; Lyon, J; Tonkin, Z; Sunnucks, P

    2016-09-01

    Genetic variation is critical to the persistence of populations and their capacity to adapt to environmental change. The distribution of genetic variation across a species' range can reveal critical information that is not necessarily represented in species occurrence or abundance patterns. We identified environmental factors associated with the amount of intraspecific, individual-based genetic variation across the range of a widespread freshwater fish species, the Murray cod Maccullochella peelii. We used two different approaches to statistically quantify the relative importance of predictor variables, allowing for nonlinear relationships: a random forest model and a Bayesian approach. The latter also accounted for population history. Both approaches identified associations between homozygosity by locus and both disturbance to the natural flow regime and mean annual flow. Homozygosity by locus was negatively associated with disturbance to the natural flow regime, suggesting that river reaches with more disturbed flow regimes may support larger, more genetically diverse populations. Our findings are consistent with the hypothesis that artificially induced perennial flows in regulated channels may provide greater and more consistent habitat and reduce the frequency of population bottlenecks that can occur frequently under the highly variable and unpredictable natural flow regime of the system. Although extensive river regulation across eastern Australia has not had an overall positive effect on Murray cod numbers over the past century, regulation may not represent the primary threat to Murray cod survival. Instead, pressures other than flow regulation may be more critical to the persistence of Murray cod (for example, reduced frequency of large floods, overfishing and chemical pollution). PMID:27273322

  9. Human cognitive ability is influenced by genetic variation in components of postsynaptic signalling complexes assembled by NMDA receptors and MAGUK proteins.

    PubMed

    Hill, W D; Davies, G; van de Lagemaat, L N; Christoforou, A; Marioni, R E; Fernandes, C P D; Liewald, D C; Croning, M D R; Payton, A; Craig, L C A; Whalley, L J; Horan, M; Ollier, W; Hansell, N K; Wright, M J; Martin, N G; Montgomery, G W; Steen, V M; Le Hellard, S; Espeseth, T; Lundervold, A J; Reinvang, I; Starr, J M; Pendleton, N; Grant, S G N; Bates, T C; Deary, I J

    2014-01-01

    Differences in general cognitive ability (intelligence) account for approximately half of the variation in any large battery of cognitive tests and are predictive of important life events including health. Genome-wide analyses of common single-nucleotide polymorphisms indicate that they jointly tag between a quarter and a half of the variance in intelligence. However, no single polymorphism has been reliably associated with variation in intelligence. It remains possible that these many small effects might be aggregated in networks of functionally linked genes. Here, we tested a network of 1461 genes in the postsynaptic density and associated complexes for an enriched association with intelligence. These were ascertained in 3511 individuals (the Cognitive Ageing Genetics in England and Scotland (CAGES) consortium) phenotyped for general cognitive ability, fluid cognitive ability, crystallised cognitive ability, memory and speed of processing. By analysing the results of a genome wide association study (GWAS) using Gene Set Enrichment Analysis, a significant enrichment was found for fluid cognitive ability for the proteins found in the complexes of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor complex; P=0.002. Replication was sought in two additional cohorts (N=670 and 2062). A meta-analytic P-value of 0.003 was found when these were combined with the CAGES consortium. The results suggest that genetic variation in the macromolecular machines formed by membrane-associated guanylate kinase (MAGUK) scaffold proteins and their interaction partners contributes to variation in intelligence. PMID:24399044

  10. Human genetics: international projects and personalized medicine.

    PubMed

    Apellaniz-Ruiz, Maria; Gallego, Cristina; Ruiz-Pinto, Sara; Carracedo, Angel; Rodríguez-Antona, Cristina

    2016-03-01

    In this article, we present the progress driven by the recent technological advances and new revolutionary massive sequencing technologies in the field of human genetics. We discuss this knowledge in relation with drug response prediction, from the germline genetic variation compiled in the 1000 Genomes Project or in the Genotype-Tissue Expression project, to the phenome-genome archives, the international cancer projects, such as The Cancer Genome Atlas or the International Cancer Genome Consortium, and the epigenetic variation and its influence in gene expression, including the regulation of drug metabolism. This review is based on the lectures presented by the speakers of the Symposium "Human Genetics: International Projects & New Technologies" from the VII Conference of the Spanish Pharmacogenetics and Pharmacogenomics Society, held on the 20th and 21st of April 2015. PMID:26581075

  11. Cryptic genetic variation and paraphyly in ravens.

    PubMed Central

    Omland, K E; Tarr, C L; Boarma, W I; Marzluff, J M; Fleischer, R C

    2000-01-01

    Widespread species that are morphologically uniform may be likely to harbour cryptic genetic variation. Common ravens (Corvus corax) have an extensive range covering nearly the entire Northern Hemisphere, but show little discrete phenotypic variation. We obtained tissue samples from throughout much of this range and collected mitochondrial sequence and nuclear microsatellite data. Our study revealed a deep genetic break between ravens from the western United States and ravens from throughout the rest of the world. These two groups, the 'California clade' and the 'Holarctic clade' are well supported and over 4% divergent in mitochondrial coding sequence. Microsatellites also reveal significant differentiation between these two groups. Ravens from Minnesota, Maine and Alaska are more similar to ravens from Asia and Europe than they are to ravens from California. The two clades come in contact over a huge area of the western United States, with mixtures of the two mitochondrial groups present in Washington, Idaho and California. In addition, the restricted range Chihuahuan raven (Corvus cryptoleucus) of the south-west United States and Mexico is genetically nested within the paraphyletic common raven. Our findings suggest that the common raven may have formerly consisted of two allopatric groups that may be in the process of remerging. PMID:11197122

  12. Normal Genetic Variation, Cognition, and Aging

    PubMed Central

    Greenwood, P. M.; Parasuraman, Raja

    2005-01-01

    This article reviews the modulation of cognitive function by normal genetic variation. Although the heritability of “g” is well established, the genes that modulate specific cognitive functions are largely unidentified. Application of the allelic association approach to individual differences in cognition has begun to reveal the effects of single nucleotide polymorphisms on specific and general cognitive functions. This article proposes a framework for relating genotype to cognitive phenotype by considering the effect of genetic variation on the protein product of specific genes within the context of the neural basis of particular cognitive domains. Specificity of effects is considered, from genes controlling part of one receptor type to genes controlling agents of neuronal repair, and evidence is reviewed of cognitive modulation by polymorphisms in dopaminergic and cholinergic receptor genes, dopaminergic enzyme genes, and neurotrophic genes. Although allelic variation in certain genes can be reliably linked to cognition—specifically to components of attention, working memory, and executive function in healthy adults—the specificity, generality, and replicability of the effects are not fully known. PMID:15006290

  13. Explaining additional genetic variation in complex traits

    PubMed Central

    Robinson, Matthew R.; Wray, Naomi R.; Visscher, Peter M.

    2015-01-01

    Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have provided valuable insights into the genetic basis of complex traits, discovering >6000 variants associated with >500 quantitative traits and common complex diseases in humans. The associations identified so far represent only a fraction of those which influence phenotype, as there are likely to be very many variants across the entire frequency spectrum, each of which influences multiple traits, with only a small average contribution to the phenotypic variance. This presents a considerable challenge to further dissection of the remaining unexplained genetic variance within populations, which limits our ability to predict disease risk, identify new drug targets, improve and maintain food sources, and understand natural diversity. This challenge will be met within the current framework through larger sample size, better phenotyping including recording of non-genetic risk factors, focused study designs, and an integration of multiple sources of phenotypic and genetic information. The current evidence supports the application of quantitative genetic approaches, and we argue that one should retain simpler theories until simplicity can be traded for greater explanatory power. PMID:24629526

  14. Basic Genetics: A Human Approach.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Biological Sciences Curriculum Study, Colorado Springs, CO. Center for Education in Human and Medical Genetics.

    This document (which has the form of a magazine) provides a variety of articles, stories, editorials, letters, interviews, and other types of magazine features (such as book reviews) which focus on human genetics. In addition to providing information about the principles of genetics, nearly all of the sections in the "magazine" address moral,…

  15. Y genetic variation and phenotypic diversity in health and disease.

    PubMed

    Case, Laure K; Teuscher, Cory

    2015-01-01

    Sexually dimorphic traits arise through the combined effects of sex hormones and sex chromosomes on sex-biased gene expression, and experimental mouse models have been instrumental in determining their relative contribution in modulating sex differences. A role for the Y chromosome (ChrY) in mediating sex differences outside of development and reproduction has historically been overlooked due to its unusual genetic composition and the predominant testes-specific expression of ChrY-encoded genes. However, ample evidence now exists supporting ChrY as a mediator of other physiological traits in males, and genetic variation in ChrY has been linked to several diseases, including heart disease, cancer, and autoimmune diseases in experimental animal models, as well as humans. The genetic and molecular mechanisms by which ChrY modulates phenotypic variation in males remain unknown but may be a function of copy number variation between homologous X-Y multicopy genes driving differential gene expression. Here, we review the literature identifying an association between ChrY polymorphism and phenotypic variation and present the current evidence depicting the mammalian ChrY as a member of the regulatory genome in males and as a factor influencing paternal parent-of-origin effects in female offspring. PMID:25866616

  16. The African Genome Variation Project shapes medical genetics in Africa

    PubMed Central

    Gurdasani, Deepti; Carstensen, Tommy; Tekola-Ayele, Fasil; Pagani, Luca; Tachmazidou, Ioanna; Hatzikotoulas, Konstantinos; Karthikeyan, Savita; Iles, Louise; Pollard, Martin O.; Choudhury, Ananyo; Ritchie, Graham R. S.; Xue, Yali; Asimit, Jennifer; Nsubuga, Rebecca N.; Young, Elizabeth H.; Pomilla, Cristina; Kivinen, Katja; Rockett, Kirk; Kamali, Anatoli; Doumatey, Ayo P.; Asiki, Gershim; Seeley, Janet; Sisay-Joof, Fatoumatta; Jallow, Muminatou; Tollman, Stephen; Mekonnen, Ephrem; Ekong, Rosemary; Oljira, Tamiru; Bradman, Neil; Bojang, Kalifa; Ramsay, Michele; Adeyemo, Adebowale; Bekele, Endashaw; Motala, Ayesha; Norris, Shane A.; Pirie, Fraser; Kaleebu, Pontiano; Kwiatkowski, Dominic; Tyler-Smith, Chris; Rotimi, Charles; Zeggini, Eleftheria; Sandhu, Manjinder S.

    2014-01-01

    Given the importance of Africa to studies of human origins and disease susceptibility, detailed characterisation of African genetic diversity is needed. The African Genome Variation Project (AGVP) provides a resource to help design, implement and interpret genomic studies in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) and worldwide. The AGVP represents dense genotypes from 1,481 and whole genome sequences (WGS) from 320 individuals across SSA. Using this resource, we find novel evidence of complex, regionally distinct hunter-gatherer and Eurasian admixture across SSA. We identify new loci under selection, including for malaria and hypertension. We show that modern imputation panels can identify association signals at highly differentiated loci across populations in SSA. Using WGS, we show further improvement in imputation accuracy supporting efforts for large-scale sequencing of diverse African haplotypes. Finally, we present an efficient genotype array design capturing common genetic variation in Africa, showing for the first time that such designs are feasible. PMID:25470054

  17. Genetic Basis of Metabolome Variation in Yeast

    PubMed Central

    Breunig, Jeffrey S.; Hackett, Sean R.; Rabinowitz, Joshua D.; Kruglyak, Leonid

    2014-01-01

    Metabolism, the conversion of nutrients into usable energy and biochemical building blocks, is an essential feature of all cells. The genetic factors responsible for inter-individual metabolic variability remain poorly understood. To investigate genetic causes of metabolome variation, we measured the concentrations of 74 metabolites across 100 segregants from a Saccharomyces cerevisiae cross by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. We found 52 quantitative trait loci for 34 metabolites. These included linkages due to overt changes in metabolic genes, e.g., linking pyrimidine intermediates to the deletion of ura3. They also included linkages not directly related to metabolic enzymes, such as those for five central carbon metabolites to ira2, a Ras/PKA pathway regulator, and for the metabolites, S-adenosyl-methionine and S-adenosyl-homocysteine to slt2, a MAP kinase involved in cell wall integrity. The variant of ira2 that elevates metabolite levels also increases glucose uptake and ethanol secretion. These results highlight specific examples of genetic variability, including in genes without prior known metabolic regulatory function, that impact yeast metabolism. PMID:24603560

  18. Human genetics shape the gut microbiome

    PubMed Central

    Goodrich, Julia K.; Waters, Jillian L.; Poole, Angela C.; Sutter, Jessica L.; Koren, Omry; Blekhman, Ran; Beaumont, Michelle; Van Treuren, William; Knight, Rob; Bell, Jordana T.; Spector, Timothy D.; Clark, Andrew G.; Ley, Ruth E.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Host genetics and the gut microbiome can both influence metabolic phenotypes. However, whether host genetic variation shapes the gut microbiome and interacts with it to affect host phenotype is unclear. Here, we compared microbiotas across > 1,000 fecal samples obtained from the TwinsUK population, including 416 twin-pairs. We identified many microbial taxa whose abundances were influenced by host genetics. The most heritable taxon, the family Christensenellaceae, formed a cooccurrence network with other heritable Bacteria and with methanogenic Archaea. Furthermore, Christensenellaceae and its partners were enriched in individuals with low body mass index (BMI). An obese-associated microbiome was amended with Christensenella minuta, a cultured member of the Christensenellaceae, and transplanted to germfree mice. C. minuta amendment reduced weight gain and altered the microbiome of recipient mice. Our findings indicate that host genetics influence the composition of the human gut microbiome and can do so in ways that impact host metabolism. PMID:25417156

  19. Involvement of endocannabinoids in alcohol “binge” drinking: studies of mice with human fatty acid amide hydrolase genetic variation and after CB1 receptor antagonists

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Yan; Huang, Ted; Lee, Francis; Kreek, Mary Jeanne

    2016-01-01

    Background The endocannabinoid system has been found to play an important role in modulating alcohol intake. Inhibition or genetic deletion of fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH, a key catabolic enzyme for endocannabinoids) leads to increased alcohol consumption and preference in rodent models. A common human single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP; C385A, rs324420) in the FAAH gene is associated with decreased enzymatic activity of FAAH, resulting in increased anandamide levels in both humans and FAAH C385A knock-in mice. Methods As this FAAH SNP has been reported to be associated with altered alcohol abuse, the present study used these genetic knock-in mice containing the human SNP C385A to determine the impact of variant FAAH gene on alcohol “binge” drinking in the drinking-in-the-dark (DID) model. Results We found that the FAAHA/A mice had greater alcohol intake and preference than the wild-type FAAHC/C mice, suggesting that increased endocannabinoid signaling in FAAHA/A mice led to increased alcohol “binge” consumption. The specificity on alcohol vulnerability was suggested by the lack of any FAAH genotype difference on sucrose or saccharin intake. Using the “binge” DID model, we confirmed that selective CB1 receptor antagonist AM251 reduced alcohol intake in the wild-type mice. Conclusions These data suggest that there is direct and selective involvement of the human FAAH C385A SNP and CB1 receptors in alcohol “binge” drinking. PMID:26857901

  20. Population genetics of malaria resistance in humans.

    PubMed

    Hedrick, P W

    2011-10-01

    The high mortality and widespread impact of malaria have resulted in this disease being the strongest evolutionary selective force in recent human history, and genes that confer resistance to malaria provide some of the best-known case studies of strong positive selection in modern humans. I begin by reviewing JBS Haldane's initial contribution to the potential of malaria genetic resistance in humans. Further, I discuss the population genetics aspects of many of the variants, including globin, G6PD deficiency, Duffy, ovalocytosis, ABO and human leukocyte antigen variants. Many of the variants conferring resistance to malaria are 'loss-of-function' mutants and appear to be recent polymorphisms from the last 5000-10 000 years or less. I discuss estimation of selection coefficients from case-control data and make predictions about the change for S, C and G6PD-deficiency variants. In addition, I consider the predicted joint changes when the two β-globin alleles S and C are both variable in the same population and when there is a variation for α-thalassemia and S, two unlinked, but epistatic variants. As more becomes known about genes conferring genetic resistance to malaria in humans, population genetics approaches can contribute both to investigating past selection and predicting the consequences in future generations for these variants. PMID:21427751

  1. Population genetics of malaria resistance in humans

    PubMed Central

    Hedrick, P W

    2011-01-01

    The high mortality and widespread impact of malaria have resulted in this disease being the strongest evolutionary selective force in recent human history, and genes that confer resistance to malaria provide some of the best-known case studies of strong positive selection in modern humans. I begin by reviewing JBS Haldane's initial contribution to the potential of malaria genetic resistance in humans. Further, I discuss the population genetics aspects of many of the variants, including globin, G6PD deficiency, Duffy, ovalocytosis, ABO and human leukocyte antigen variants. Many of the variants conferring resistance to malaria are ‘loss-of-function' mutants and appear to be recent polymorphisms from the last 5000–10 000 years or less. I discuss estimation of selection coefficients from case–control data and make predictions about the change for S, C and G6PD-deficiency variants. In addition, I consider the predicted joint changes when the two β-globin alleles S and C are both variable in the same population and when there is a variation for α-thalassemia and S, two unlinked, but epistatic variants. As more becomes known about genes conferring genetic resistance to malaria in humans, population genetics approaches can contribute both to investigating past selection and predicting the consequences in future generations for these variants. PMID:21427751

  2. A Multi-scale Computational Platform to Mechanistically Assess the Effect of Genetic Variation on Drug Responses in Human Erythrocyte Metabolism.

    PubMed

    Mih, Nathan; Brunk, Elizabeth; Bordbar, Aarash; Palsson, Bernhard O

    2016-07-01

    Progress in systems medicine brings promise to addressing patient heterogeneity and individualized therapies. Recently, genome-scale models of metabolism have been shown to provide insight into the mechanistic link between drug therapies and systems-level off-target effects while being expanded to explicitly include the three-dimensional structure of proteins. The integration of these molecular-level details, such as the physical, structural, and dynamical properties of proteins, notably expands the computational description of biochemical network-level properties and the possibility of understanding and predicting whole cell phenotypes. In this study, we present a multi-scale modeling framework that describes biological processes which range in scale from atomistic details to an entire metabolic network. Using this approach, we can understand how genetic variation, which impacts the structure and reactivity of a protein, influences both native and drug-induced metabolic states. As a proof-of-concept, we study three enzymes (catechol-O-methyltransferase, glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase, and glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase) and their respective genetic variants which have clinically relevant associations. Using all-atom molecular dynamic simulations enables the sampling of long timescale conformational dynamics of the proteins (and their mutant variants) in complex with their respective native metabolites or drug molecules. We find that changes in a protein's structure due to a mutation influences protein binding affinity to metabolites and/or drug molecules, and inflicts large-scale changes in metabolism. PMID:27467583

  3. A Multi-scale Computational Platform to Mechanistically Assess the Effect of Genetic Variation on Drug Responses in Human Erythrocyte Metabolism

    PubMed Central

    Bordbar, Aarash; Palsson, Bernhard O.

    2016-01-01

    Progress in systems medicine brings promise to addressing patient heterogeneity and individualized therapies. Recently, genome-scale models of metabolism have been shown to provide insight into the mechanistic link between drug therapies and systems-level off-target effects while being expanded to explicitly include the three-dimensional structure of proteins. The integration of these molecular-level details, such as the physical, structural, and dynamical properties of proteins, notably expands the computational description of biochemical network-level properties and the possibility of understanding and predicting whole cell phenotypes. In this study, we present a multi-scale modeling framework that describes biological processes which range in scale from atomistic details to an entire metabolic network. Using this approach, we can understand how genetic variation, which impacts the structure and reactivity of a protein, influences both native and drug-induced metabolic states. As a proof-of-concept, we study three enzymes (catechol-O-methyltransferase, glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase, and glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase) and their respective genetic variants which have clinically relevant associations. Using all-atom molecular dynamic simulations enables the sampling of long timescale conformational dynamics of the proteins (and their mutant variants) in complex with their respective native metabolites or drug molecules. We find that changes in a protein’s structure due to a mutation influences protein binding affinity to metabolites and/or drug molecules, and inflicts large-scale changes in metabolism. PMID:27467583

  4. Fractal and Transgenerational Genetic Effects on Phenotypic Variation and Disease Risk

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nadeau, Joe

    To understand human biology and to manage heritable diseases, a complete picture of the genetic basis for phenotypic variation and disease risk is needed. Unexpectedly however, most of these genetic variants, even for highly heritable traits, continue to elude discovery for poorly understood reasons. The genetics community is actively exploring the usual explanations for missing heritability. But given the extraordinary work that has already been done and the exceptional magnitude of the problem, it seems likely that unconventional genetic properties are involved.

  5. Genetic & epigenetic approach to human obesity.

    PubMed

    Rao, K Rajender; Lal, Nirupama; Giridharan, N V

    2014-11-01

    Obesity is an important clinical and public health challenge, epitomized by excess adipose tissue accumulation resulting from an imbalance in energy intake and energy expenditure. It is a forerunner for a variety of other diseases such as type-2-diabetes (T2D), cardiovascular diseases, some types of cancer, stroke, hyperlipidaemia and can be fatal leading to premature death. Obesity is highly heritable and arises from the interplay of multiple genes and environmental factors. Recent advancements in Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have shown important steps towards identifying genetic risks and identification of genetic markers for lifestyle diseases, especially for a metabolic disorder like obesity. According to the 12th Update of Human Obesity Gene Map there are 253 quantity trait loci (QTL) for obesity related phenotypes from 61 genome wide scan studies. Contribution of genetic propensity of individual ethnic and racial variations in obesity is an active area of research. Further, understanding its complexity as to how these variations could influence ones susceptibility to become or remain obese will lead us to a greater understanding of how obesity occurs and hopefully, how to prevent and treat this condition. In this review, various strategies adapted for such an analysis based on the recent advances in genome wide and functional variations in human obesity are discussed. PMID:25579139

  6. Genetic & epigenetic approach to human obesity

    PubMed Central

    Rao, K. Rajender; Lal, Nirupama; Giridharan, N.V.

    2014-01-01

    Obesity is an important clinical and public health challenge, epitomized by excess adipose tissue accumulation resulting from an imbalance in energy intake and energy expenditure. It is a forerunner for a variety of other diseases such as type-2-diabetes (T2D), cardiovascular diseases, some types of cancer, stroke, hyperlipidaemia and can be fatal leading to premature death. Obesity is highly heritable and arises from the interplay of multiple genes and environmental factors. Recent advancements in Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have shown important steps towards identifying genetic risks and identification of genetic markers for lifestyle diseases, especially for a metabolic disorder like obesity. According to the 12th Update of Human Obesity Gene Map there are 253 quantity trait loci (QTL) for obesity related phenotypes from 61 genome wide scan studies. Contribution of genetic propensity of individual ethnic and racial variations in obesity is an active area of research. Further, understanding its complexity as to how these variations could influence ones susceptibility to become or remain obese will lead us to a greater understanding of how obesity occurs and hopefully, how to prevent and treat this condition. In this review, various strategies adapted for such an analysis based on the recent advances in genome wide and functional variations in human obesity are discussed. PMID:25579139

  7. DNA diagnosis of human genetic individuality.

    PubMed

    Pena, S D; Prado, V F; Epplen, J T

    1995-11-01

    DNA studies of the human genome have shown polymorphic variation at thousands of sites, defining an absolute genetic uniqueness for each individual. There are many circumstances in which it may be desirable to diagnose this molecular individuality, as for instance, in criminal investigations or paternity testing. Several techniques can be used for this DNA diagnosis and we can choose among them the one that best suits the specific problem at hand. In this review we describe the main methodologies in current use to investigate human DNA polymorphisms, discussing the best application of each option, as well as their advantages and disadvantages. PMID:8751139

  8. Genetic variation in resistance to ionizing radiation

    SciTech Connect

    Ayala, F.J.

    1991-06-24

    We proposed an investigation of genetically-determined individual differences in sensitivity to ionizing radiation. The model organism is Drosophila melanogaster. The gene coding for Cu,Zn superoxide dismutase (SOD) is the target locus, but the effects of variation in other components of the genome that modulate SOD levels are also taken into account. SOD scavenges oxygen radicals generated during exposure to ionizing radiation. It has been shown to protect against ionizing radiation damage to DNA, viruses, bacteria, mammalian cells, whole mice, and Drosophila. Two alleles, S and F, are commonly found in natural populations of D. melanogaster; in addition we have isolated from a natural population null'' (CA1) mutant that yields only 3.5% of normal SOD activity. The S, F, and CA1 alleles provide an ideal model system to investigate SOD-dependent radioresistance, because each allele yields different levels of SOD, so that S > F >> CA1. The roles of SOD level in radioresistance are being investigated in a series of experiments that measure the somatic and germ-line effects of increasing doses of ionizing radiation. In addition, we have pursued an unexpected genetic event-namely the nearly simultaneous transformation of several lines homozygous for the SOD null'' allele into predominately S lines. Using specifically designed probes and DNA amplification by means of the Tag polymerase chain reaction (PCR) we have shown that (1) the null allele was still present in the transformed lines, but was being gradually replaced by the S allele as a consequence of natural selection; and (2) that the transformation was due to the spontaneous deletion of a 0.68 Kb truncated P-element, the insertion of which is characteristic of the CA1 null allele.

  9. Antigenic variation: Molecular and genetic mechanisms of relapsing disease

    SciTech Connect

    Cruse, J.M.; Lewis, R.E.

    1987-01-01

    This book contains 10 chapters. They are: Contemporary Concepts of Antigenic Variation; Antigenic Variation in the Influenza Viruses; Mechanisms of Escape of Visna Lentiviruses from Immunological Control; A Review of Antigenic Variation by the Equine Infectious Anemia Virus; Biologic and Molecular Variations in AIDS Retrovirus Isolates; Rabies Virus Infection: Genetic Mutations and the Impact on Viral Pathogenicity and Immunity; Immunobiology of Relapsing Fever; Antigenic Variation in African Trypanosomes; Antigenic Variation and Antigenic Diversity in Malaria; and Mechanisms of Immune Evasion in Schistosomiasis.

  10. Global genetic variation at nine short tandem repeat loci and implications on forensic genetics.

    PubMed

    Sun, Guangyun; McGarvey, Stephen T; Bayoumi, Riad; Mulligan, Connie J; Barrantes, Ramiro; Raskin, Salmo; Zhong, Yixi; Akey, Joshua; Chakraborty, Ranajit; Deka, Ranjan

    2003-01-01

    We have studied genetic variation at nine autosomal short tandem repeat loci in 20 globally distributed human populations defined by geographic and ethnic origins, viz., African, Caucasian, Asian, Native American and Oceanic. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the utility and applicability of these nine loci in forensic analysis in worldwide populations. The levels of genetic variation measured by number of alleles, allele size variance and heterozygosity are high in all populations irrespective of their effective sizes. Single- as well as multi-locus genotype frequencies are in conformity with the assumptions of Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium. Further, alleles across the entire set of nine loci are mutually independent in all populations. Gene diversity analysis shows that pooling of population data by major geographic groupings does not introduce substructure effects beyond the levels recommended by the National Research Council, validating the establishment of population databases based on major geographic and ethnic groupings. A network tree based on genetic distances further supports this assertion, in which populations of common ancestry cluster together. With respect to the power of discrimination and exclusion probabilities, even the relatively reduced levels of genetic variation at these nine STR loci in smaller and isolated populations provide an exclusionary power over 99%. However, in paternity testing with unknown genotype of the mother, the power of exclusion could fall below 80% in some isolated populations, and in such cases use of additional loci supplementing the battery of the nine loci is recommended. PMID:12529704

  11. Fatty acid metabolism: Implications for diet, genetic variation, and disease

    PubMed Central

    Suburu, Janel; Gu, Zhennan; Chen, Haiqin; Chen, Wei; Zhang, Hao; Chen, Yong Q.

    2014-01-01

    Cultures across the globe, especially Western societies, are burdened by chronic diseases such as obesity, metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular disease, and cancer. Several factors, including diet, genetics, and sedentary lifestyle, are suspected culprits to the development and progression of these health maladies. Fatty acids are primary constituents of cellular physiology. Humans can acquire fatty acids by de novo synthesis from carbohydrate or protein sources or by dietary consumption. Importantly, regulation of their metabolism is critical to sustain balanced homeostasis, and perturbations of such can lead to the development of disease. Here, we review de novo and dietary fatty acid metabolism and highlight recent advances in our understanding of the relationship between dietary influences and genetic variation in fatty acid metabolism and their role in chronic diseases. PMID:24511462

  12. Comparative RNA sequencing reveals substantial genetic variation in endangered primates

    PubMed Central

    Perry, George H.; Melsted, Páll; Marioni, John C.; Wang, Ying; Bainer, Russell; Pickrell, Joseph K.; Michelini, Katelyn; Zehr, Sarah; Yoder, Anne D.; Stephens, Matthew; Pritchard, Jonathan K.; Gilad, Yoav

    2012-01-01

    Comparative genomic studies in primates have yielded important insights into the evolutionary forces that shape genetic diversity and revealed the likely genetic basis for certain species-specific adaptations. To date, however, these studies have focused on only a small number of species. For the majority of nonhuman primates, including some of the most critically endangered, genome-level data are not yet available. In this study, we have taken the first steps toward addressing this gap by sequencing RNA from the livers of multiple individuals from each of 16 mammalian species, including humans and 11 nonhuman primates. Of the nonhuman primate species, five are lemurs and two are lorisoids, for which little or no genomic data were previously available. To analyze these data, we developed a method for de novo assembly and alignment of orthologous gene sequences across species. We assembled an average of 5721 gene sequences per species and characterized diversity and divergence of both gene sequences and gene expression levels. We identified patterns of variation that are consistent with the action of positive or directional selection, including an 18-fold enrichment of peroxisomal genes among genes whose regulation likely evolved under directional selection in the ancestral primate lineage. Importantly, we found no relationship between genetic diversity and endangered status, with the two most endangered species in our study, the black and white ruffed lemur and the Coquerel's sifaka, having the highest genetic diversity among all primates. Our observations imply that many endangered lemur populations still harbor considerable genetic variation. Timely efforts to conserve these species alongside their habitats have, therefore, strong potential to achieve long-term success. PMID:22207615

  13. The role of mutation in genetic copy number variation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Clark, B. K.; Weidner, Jacob; Wabick, Kevin

    2010-03-01

    Until very recently, the standard model of DNA included two genes for each trait. This dated model has given way to a model that includes copies of some genes well in excess of the canonical two. Copy number variations in the human genome play critical roles in causing or aggravating a number of syndromes and diseases while providing increased resistance to others. We explore the role of mutation, crossover, inversion, and reproduction in determining copy number variations in a numerical simulation of a population. The numerical model consists of a population of individuals, where each individual is represented by a single strand of DNA with the same number of genes. Each gene is initially assigned to one of two traits. Fitness of the individual is determined by the two most fit genes for trait one, and trait two genetic material is treated as a reservoir of junk DNA. After a sufficient number of generations, during which the genetic distribution is allowed to reach a steady-state, the mean number of genes per trait and the copy number variation are recorded. Here, we focus on the role of mutation and compare simulation results to theory.

  14. The African Genome Variation Project shapes medical genetics in Africa.

    PubMed

    Gurdasani, Deepti; Carstensen, Tommy; Tekola-Ayele, Fasil; Pagani, Luca; Tachmazidou, Ioanna; Hatzikotoulas, Konstantinos; Karthikeyan, Savita; Iles, Louise; Pollard, Martin O; Choudhury, Ananyo; Ritchie, Graham R S; Xue, Yali; Asimit, Jennifer; Nsubuga, Rebecca N; Young, Elizabeth H; Pomilla, Cristina; Kivinen, Katja; Rockett, Kirk; Kamali, Anatoli; Doumatey, Ayo P; Asiki, Gershim; Seeley, Janet; Sisay-Joof, Fatoumatta; Jallow, Muminatou; Tollman, Stephen; Mekonnen, Ephrem; Ekong, Rosemary; Oljira, Tamiru; Bradman, Neil; Bojang, Kalifa; Ramsay, Michele; Adeyemo, Adebowale; Bekele, Endashaw; Motala, Ayesha; Norris, Shane A; Pirie, Fraser; Kaleebu, Pontiano; Kwiatkowski, Dominic; Tyler-Smith, Chris; Rotimi, Charles; Zeggini, Eleftheria; Sandhu, Manjinder S

    2015-01-15

    Given the importance of Africa to studies of human origins and disease susceptibility, detailed characterization of African genetic diversity is needed. The African Genome Variation Project provides a resource with which to design, implement and interpret genomic studies in sub-Saharan Africa and worldwide. The African Genome Variation Project represents dense genotypes from 1,481 individuals and whole-genome sequences from 320 individuals across sub-Saharan Africa. Using this resource, we find novel evidence of complex, regionally distinct hunter-gatherer and Eurasian admixture across sub-Saharan Africa. We identify new loci under selection, including loci related to malaria susceptibility and hypertension. We show that modern imputation panels (sets of reference genotypes from which unobserved or missing genotypes in study sets can be inferred) can identify association signals at highly differentiated loci across populations in sub-Saharan Africa. Using whole-genome sequencing, we demonstrate further improvements in imputation accuracy, strengthening the case for large-scale sequencing efforts of diverse African haplotypes. Finally, we present an efficient genotype array design capturing common genetic variation in Africa. PMID:25470054

  15. The African Genome Variation Project shapes medical genetics in Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gurdasani, Deepti; Carstensen, Tommy; Tekola-Ayele, Fasil; Pagani, Luca; Tachmazidou, Ioanna; Hatzikotoulas, Konstantinos; Karthikeyan, Savita; Iles, Louise; Pollard, Martin O.; Choudhury, Ananyo; Ritchie, Graham R. S.; Xue, Yali; Asimit, Jennifer; Nsubuga, Rebecca N.; Young, Elizabeth H.; Pomilla, Cristina; Kivinen, Katja; Rockett, Kirk; Kamali, Anatoli; Doumatey, Ayo P.; Asiki, Gershim; Seeley, Janet; Sisay-Joof, Fatoumatta; Jallow, Muminatou; Tollman, Stephen; Mekonnen, Ephrem; Ekong, Rosemary; Oljira, Tamiru; Bradman, Neil; Bojang, Kalifa; Ramsay, Michele; Adeyemo, Adebowale; Bekele, Endashaw; Motala, Ayesha; Norris, Shane A.; Pirie, Fraser; Kaleebu, Pontiano; Kwiatkowski, Dominic; Tyler-Smith, Chris; Rotimi, Charles; Zeggini, Eleftheria; Sandhu, Manjinder S.

    2015-01-01

    Given the importance of Africa to studies of human origins and disease susceptibility, detailed characterization of African genetic diversity is needed. The African Genome Variation Project provides a resource with which to design, implement and interpret genomic studies in sub-Saharan Africa and worldwide. The African Genome Variation Project represents dense genotypes from 1,481 individuals and whole-genome sequences from 320 individuals across sub-Saharan Africa. Using this resource, we find novel evidence of complex, regionally distinct hunter-gatherer and Eurasian admixture across sub-Saharan Africa. We identify new loci under selection, including loci related to malaria susceptibility and hypertension. We show that modern imputation panels (sets of reference genotypes from which unobserved or missing genotypes in study sets can be inferred) can identify association signals at highly differentiated loci across populations in sub-Saharan Africa. Using whole-genome sequencing, we demonstrate further improvements in imputation accuracy, strengthening the case for large-scale sequencing efforts of diverse African haplotypes. Finally, we present an efficient genotype array design capturing common genetic variation in Africa.

  16. Human cooperation in groups: variation begets variation.

    PubMed

    van den Berg, Pieter; Molleman, Lucas; Junikka, Jaakko; Puurtinen, Mikael; Weissing, Franz J

    2015-01-01

    Many experiments on human cooperation have revealed that individuals differ systematically in their tendency to cooperate with others. It has also been shown that individuals condition their behaviour on the overall cooperation level of their peers. Yet, little is known about how individuals respond to heterogeneity in cooperativeness in their neighbourhood. Here, we present an experimental study investigating whether and how people respond to heterogeneous behaviour in a public goods game. We find that a large majority of subjects does respond to heterogeneity in their group, but they respond in quite different ways. Most subjects contribute less to the public good when the contributions of their peers are more heterogeneous, but a substantial fraction of individuals consistently contributes more in this case. In addition, we find that individuals that respond positively to heterogeneity have a higher general cooperation tendency. The finding that social responsiveness occurs in different forms and is correlated with cooperativeness may have important implications for the outcome of cooperative interactions. PMID:26531770

  17. Human cooperation in groups: variation begets variation

    PubMed Central

    Berg, Pieter van den; Molleman, Lucas; Junikka, Jaakko; Puurtinen, Mikael; Weissing, Franz J.

    2015-01-01

    Many experiments on human cooperation have revealed that individuals differ systematically in their tendency to cooperate with others. It has also been shown that individuals condition their behaviour on the overall cooperation level of their peers. Yet, little is known about how individuals respond to heterogeneity in cooperativeness in their neighbourhood. Here, we present an experimental study investigating whether and how people respond to heterogeneous behaviour in a public goods game. We find that a large majority of subjects does respond to heterogeneity in their group, but they respond in quite different ways. Most subjects contribute less to the public good when the contributions of their peers are more heterogeneous, but a substantial fraction of individuals consistently contributes more in this case. In addition, we find that individuals that respond positively to heterogeneity have a higher general cooperation tendency. The finding that social responsiveness occurs in different forms and is correlated with cooperativeness may have important implications for the outcome of cooperative interactions. PMID:26531770

  18. Ploidy Variation and Genetic Diversity in Dichroa

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Recent evidence suggests a close genetic relationship between Hydrangea macrophylla and D. febrifuga, which supports previous morphological and DNA sequence data. This relationship was confirmed by the production of fertile intergeneric hybrids. Here we characterize the genetic diversity of availab...

  19. Cytoplasmic genetic variation and extensive cytonuclear interactions influence natural variation in the metabolome

    PubMed Central

    Joseph, Bindu; Corwin, Jason A; Li, Baohua; Atwell, Suzi; Kliebenstein, Daniel J

    2013-01-01

    Understanding genome to phenotype linkages has been greatly enabled by genomic sequencing. However, most genome analysis is typically confined to the nuclear genome. We conducted a metabolomic QTL analysis on a reciprocal RIL population structured to examine how variation in the organelle genomes affects phenotypic variation. This showed that the cytoplasmic variation had effects similar to, if not larger than, the largest individual nuclear locus. Inclusion of cytoplasmic variation into the genetic model greatly increased the explained phenotypic variation. Cytoplasmic genetic variation was a central hub in the epistatic network controlling the plant metabolome. This epistatic influence manifested such that the cytoplasmic background could alter or hide pairwise epistasis between nuclear loci. Thus, cytoplasmic genetic variation plays a central role in controlling natural variation in metabolomic networks. This suggests that cytoplasmic genomes must be included in any future analysis of natural variation. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.00776.001 PMID:24150750

  20. Size variation in Middle Pleistocene humans.

    PubMed

    Arsuaga, J L; Carretero, J M; Lorenzo, C; Gracia, A; Martínez, I; Bermúdez de Castro, J M; Carbonell, E

    1997-08-22

    It has been suggested that European Middle Pleistocene humans, Neandertals, and prehistoric modern humans had a greater sexual dimorphism than modern humans. Analysis of body size variation and cranial capacity variation in the large sample from the Sima de los Huesos site in Spain showed instead that the sexual dimorphism is comparable in Middle Pleistocene and modern populations. PMID:9262474

  1. Anatomy, Medical Education, and Human Ancestral Variation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Strkalj, Goran; Spocter, Muhammad A.; Wilkinson, A. Tracey

    2011-01-01

    It is argued in this article that the human body both in health and disease cannot be fully understood without adequately accounting for the different levels of human variation. The article focuses on variation due to ancestry, arguing that the inclusion of information pertaining to ancestry in human anatomy teaching materials and courses should…

  2. Folk beliefs about genetic variation predict avoidance of biracial individuals

    PubMed Central

    Kang, Sonia K.; Plaks, Jason E.; Remedios, Jessica D.

    2015-01-01

    People give widely varying estimates for the amount of genetic overlap that exists between humans. While some laypeople believe that humans are highly genetically similar to one another, others believe that humans share very little genetic overlap. These studies examine how beliefs about genetic overlap affect neural and evaluative reactions to racially-ambiguous and biracial targets. In Study 1, we found that lower genetic overlap estimates predicted a stronger neural avoidance response to biracial compared to monoracial targets. In Study 2, we found that lower genetic overlap estimates predicted longer response times to classify biracial (vs. monoracial) faces into racial categories. In Study 3, we manipulated genetic overlap beliefs and found that participants in the low overlap condition explicitly rated biracial targets more negatively than those in the high overlap condition. Taken together, these data suggest that genetic overlap beliefs influence perceivers’ processing fluency and evaluation of biracial and racially-ambiguous individuals. PMID:25904875

  3. Propagation of genetic variation in gene regulatory networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Plahte, Erik; Gjuvsland, Arne B.; Omholt, Stig W.

    2013-08-01

    A future quantitative genetics theory should link genetic variation to phenotypic variation in a causally cohesive way based on how genes actually work and interact. We provide a theoretical framework for predicting and understanding the manifestation of genetic variation in haploid and diploid regulatory networks with arbitrary feedback structures and intra-locus and inter-locus functional dependencies. Using results from network and graph theory, we define propagation functions describing how genetic variation in a locus is propagated through the network, and show how their derivatives are related to the network’s feedback structure. Similarly, feedback functions describe the effect of genotypic variation of a locus on itself, either directly or mediated by the network. A simple sign rule relates the sign of the derivative of the feedback function of any locus to the feedback loops involving that particular locus. We show that the sign of the phenotypically manifested interaction between alleles at a diploid locus is equal to the sign of the dominant feedback loop involving that particular locus, in accordance with recent results for a single locus system. Our results provide tools by which one can use observable equilibrium concentrations of gene products to disclose structural properties of the network architecture. Our work is a step towards a theory capable of explaining the pleiotropy and epistasis features of genetic variation in complex regulatory networks as functions of regulatory anatomy and functional location of the genetic variation.

  4. Adaptive genetic variation and heart disease risk

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Purpose of review: Obesity, dyslipidemia and cardiovascular disease are complex and determined by both genetic and environmental factors and their interrelationships. Many associations from genome-wide association studies (GWAS) and candidate gene approaches have described a multitude of polymorphis...

  5. Chromosome Variations And Human Behavior

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Soudek, D.

    1974-01-01

    Article focused on the science of cytogenetics, which studied the transmission of the units of heredity called chromosomes, and considered the advantage of proper diagnosis of genetic diseases, treated on the chromosomal level. (Author/RK)

  6. Heredity vs. Environment: The Effects of Genetic Variation with Age

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gourlay, N.

    1978-01-01

    Major problems in the field are presented through a brief review of Burt's work and a critical account of the Hawaiian and British schools of biometrical genetics. The merits and demerits of Christopher Jencks' study are also discussed. There follows an account of the principle of genetic variation with age, a new concept to the…

  7. Genetic variation in the east Midlands.

    PubMed

    Mastana, S S; Sokol, R J

    1998-01-01

    According to history, the population of the British Isles derives its genepool from a succession of invaders and immigrants. The settlement pattern of these invaders gave rise to a patchwork of genepools, shown in previous genetic surveys. Specimens from 1117 blood donors of regionally subdivided East Midlands (Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire) were analysed for 18 conventional genetic systems (blood groups, serum proteins and red cell enzymes), according to place of residence. Significant differences exist among the five geographically defined sub-populations, and it is argued that these are derived from the historical settlement of continental European populations in the region, especially the Danes and the Vikings. PMID:9483207

  8. [HIV infection and human genetics].

    PubMed

    Bobkova, M R

    2009-01-01

    The review summarizes data of recent studies on the impact of human gene polymorphisms on the possibility of HIV infection, as well as the specific features of its pathogenesis, the efficiency of HIV infection treatment and the likelihood of its complication. Main information on the mechanisms responsible for viral penetration into the sensitive cells, for immune response development and involvement of HLA and KIR molecules in this process are briefly outlined. Idea on major cell proteins affecting drug metabolism and excretion and encoding for their genes are generalized. There are many examples that show how different human gene alleles and their combinations affect the nature of the pathogenetic process and the occurrence and degree of adverse reactions. The first example of successfully using the prognostic genetic analysis (HLA-B*5701) registered in 2008 to upgrade the quality of HIV infection treatment is described in detail. Basic requirements for further genetic tests to use the optimal antiretroviral therapy schemes and to reduce its hazardous effects are formulated. PMID:20481056

  9. A model for monitoring of Hsp90-buffered genetic variations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kozeko, Liudmyla

    Genetic material of terrestrial organisms can be considerably injured by cosmic rays and UV-radiation in the space environment. Organisms onboard are also exposed to the entire complex of negative physical factors which can generate genetic variations and affect morphogenesis. However, species phenotypes must be robust to genetic variation, requiring "buffering" systems to ensure normal development. The molecular chaperone Hsp90 can serve as such "a buffer". It is important in the maturation and conformational regulation of a diverse set of signal transducers. The requirement of many principal regulatory proteins for Hsp90 renders entire metabolic pathways sensitive to impairment of its function. So inhibition of Hsp90 function can open cryptic genetic variations and produce morphological changes. In this paper, we present a model for monitoring of cryptic Hsp90-buffered genetic variations arising during exposure to space and spaceflight factors. This model has been developed with Arabidopsis thaliana seeds gathered in natural habitats with high anthropogenic pressure and wild type (Col-0) seeds subjected to negative influences (UV, heavy metals) experimentally. The phenotypic traits of early seedlings grown under reduction of Hsp90 activity were characterized to estimate Hsp90-buffered genetic variations. Geldanamycin was used as an inhibitor of Hsp90 function.

  10. Genetic Interactions Between Transcription Factors Cause Natural Variation in Yeast

    PubMed Central

    Gerke, Justin; Lorenz, Kim; Cohen, Barak

    2016-01-01

    Our understanding of the genetic basis of phenotypic diversity is limited by the paucity of examples in which multiple, interacting loci have been identified. We show that natural variation in the efficiency of sporulation, the program in yeast that initiates the sexual phase of the life cycle, between oak tree and vineyard strains is due to allelic variation between four nucleotide changes in three transcription factors: IME1, RME1, and RSF1. Furthermore, we identified that selection has shaped quantitative variation in yeast sporulation between strains. These results illustrate how genetic interactions between transcription factors are a major source of phenotypic diversity within species. PMID:19164747

  11. Models to explore genetics of human aging.

    PubMed

    Karasik, David; Newman, Anne

    2015-01-01

    Genetic studies have bestowed insight into the biological mechanisms underlying inter-individual differences in susceptibility to (or resistance to) organisms’ aging. Recent advances in molecular and genetic epidemiology provide tools to explore the genetic sources of the variability in biological aging in humans. To be successful, the genetic study of a complex condition such as aging requires the clear definition of essential traits that can characterize the aging process phenotypically. Phenotypes of human aging have long relied on mortality rate or exceptional longevity. Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have been shown to present an unbiased approach to the identification of new candidate genes for human diseases. The GWAS approach can also be used for positive health phenotypes such as longevity or a delay in age-related chronic disease, as well as for other age related changes such as loss of telomere length or lens transparency. Sequencing, either in targeted regions or across the whole genome can further identify rare variation that may contribute to the biological aging mechanisms. To date, the results of the GWAS for longevity are rather disappointing, possibly in part due to the small number of individuals with GWAS data who have reached advanced old age.Human aging phenotypes are needed that can be assessed prior to death, and should be both heritable and validated as predictors of longevity. Potentially, phenotypes that focus on “successful” or “healthy” aging will be more powerful as they can be measured in large numbers of people and also are clinically relevant.We postulate that construction of an integrated phenotype of aging can be achieved capitalizing on multiple traits that may have weak correlations, but a shared underlying genetic architecture. This is based on a hypothesis that convergent results from multiple individual aging-related traits will point out the pleiotropic signals responsible for the overall rate of aging of

  12. Patterns of Genetic Variation Within and Between Gibbon Species

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Sung K.; Carbone, Lucia; Becquet, Celine; Mootnick, Alan R.; de Jong, Pieter J.; Wall, Jeffrey D.

    2011-01-01

    Gibbons are small, arboreal, highly endangered apes that are understudied compared with other hominoids. At present, there are four recognized genera and approximately 17 species, all likely to have diverged from each other within the last 5–6 My. Although the gibbon phylogeny has been investigated using various approaches (i.e., vocalization, morphology, mitochondrial DNA, karyotype, etc.), the precise taxonomic relationships are still highly debated. Here, we present the first survey of nuclear sequence variation within and between gibbon species with the goal of estimating basic population genetic parameters. We gathered ∼60 kb of sequence data from a panel of 19 gibbons representing nine species and all four genera. We observe high levels of nucleotide diversity within species, indicative of large historical population sizes. In addition, we find low levels of genetic differentiation between species within a genus comparable to what has been estimated for human populations. This is likely due to ongoing or episodic gene flow between species, and we estimate a migration rate between Nomascus leucogenys and N. gabriellae of roughly one migrant every two generations. Together, our findings suggest that gibbons have had a complex demographic history involving hybridization or mixing between diverged populations. PMID:21368318

  13. A Genome-Wide Survey of Genetic Variation in Gorillas Using Reduced Representation Sequencing

    PubMed Central

    Xue, Yali; Ayub, Qasim; Durbin, Richard; Tyler-Smith, Chris

    2013-01-01

    All non-human great apes are endangered in the wild, and it is therefore important to gain an understanding of their demography and genetic diversity. Whole genome assembly projects have provided an invaluable foundation for understanding genetics in all four genera, but to date genetic studies of multiple individuals within great ape species have largely been confined to mitochondrial DNA and a small number of other loci. Here, we present a genome-wide survey of genetic variation in gorillas using a reduced representation sequencing approach, focusing on the two lowland subspecies. We identify 3,006,670 polymorphic sites in 14 individuals: 12 western lowland gorillas (Gorilla gorilla gorilla) and 2 eastern lowland gorillas (Gorilla beringei graueri). We find that the two species are genetically distinct, based on levels of heterozygosity and patterns of allele sharing. Focusing on the western lowland population, we observe evidence for population substructure, and a deficit of rare genetic variants suggesting a recent episode of population contraction. In western lowland gorillas, there is an elevation of variation towards telomeres and centromeres on the chromosomal scale. On a finer scale, we find substantial variation in genetic diversity, including a marked reduction close to the major histocompatibility locus, perhaps indicative of recent strong selection there. These findings suggest that despite their maintaining an overall level of genetic diversity equal to or greater than that of humans, population decline, perhaps associated with disease, has been a significant factor in recent and long-term pressures on wild gorilla populations. PMID:23750230

  14. A genome-wide survey of genetic variation in gorillas using reduced representation sequencing.

    PubMed

    Scally, Aylwyn; Yngvadottir, Bryndis; Xue, Yali; Ayub, Qasim; Durbin, Richard; Tyler-Smith, Chris

    2013-01-01

    All non-human great apes are endangered in the wild, and it is therefore important to gain an understanding of their demography and genetic diversity. Whole genome assembly projects have provided an invaluable foundation for understanding genetics in all four genera, but to date genetic studies of multiple individuals within great ape species have largely been confined to mitochondrial DNA and a small number of other loci. Here, we present a genome-wide survey of genetic variation in gorillas using a reduced representation sequencing approach, focusing on the two lowland subspecies. We identify 3,006,670 polymorphic sites in 14 individuals: 12 western lowland gorillas (Gorilla gorilla gorilla) and 2 eastern lowland gorillas (Gorilla beringei graueri). We find that the two species are genetically distinct, based on levels of heterozygosity and patterns of allele sharing. Focusing on the western lowland population, we observe evidence for population substructure, and a deficit of rare genetic variants suggesting a recent episode of population contraction. In western lowland gorillas, there is an elevation of variation towards telomeres and centromeres on the chromosomal scale. On a finer scale, we find substantial variation in genetic diversity, including a marked reduction close to the major histocompatibility locus, perhaps indicative of recent strong selection there. These findings suggest that despite their maintaining an overall level of genetic diversity equal to or greater than that of humans, population decline, perhaps associated with disease, has been a significant factor in recent and long-term pressures on wild gorilla populations. PMID:23750230

  15. Genetic and phenotypic intra-species variation in Candida albicans

    PubMed Central

    Hirakawa, Matthew P.; Martinez, Diego A.; Sakthikumar, Sharadha; Anderson, Matthew Z.; Berlin, Aaron; Gujja, Sharvari; Zeng, Qiandong; Zisson, Ethan; Wang, Joshua M.; Greenberg, Joshua M.; Berman, Judith

    2015-01-01

    Candida albicans is a commensal fungus of the human gastrointestinal tract and a prevalent opportunistic pathogen. To examine diversity within this species, extensive genomic and phenotypic analyses were performed on 21 clinical C. albicans isolates. Genomic variation was evident in the form of polymorphisms, copy number variations, chromosomal inversions, subtelomeric hypervariation, loss of heterozygosity (LOH), and whole or partial chromosome aneuploidies. All 21 strains were diploid, although karyotypic changes were present in eight of the 21 isolates, with multiple strains being trisomic for Chromosome 4 or Chromosome 7. Aneuploid strains exhibited a general fitness defect relative to euploid strains when grown under replete conditions. All strains were also heterozygous, yet multiple, distinct LOH tracts were present in each isolate. Higher overall levels of genome heterozygosity correlated with faster growth rates, consistent with increased overall fitness. Genes with the highest rates of amino acid substitutions included many cell wall proteins, implicating fast evolving changes in cell adhesion and host interactions. One clinical isolate, P94015, presented several striking properties including a novel cellular phenotype, an inability to filament, drug resistance, and decreased virulence. Several of these properties were shown to be due to a homozygous nonsense mutation in the EFG1 gene. Furthermore, loss of EFG1 function resulted in increased fitness of P94015 in a commensal model of infection. Our analysis therefore reveals intra-species genetic and phenotypic differences in C. albicans and delineates a natural mutation that alters the balance between commensalism and pathogenicity. PMID:25504520

  16. Child externalizing behavior problems linked to genetic and non-genetic variation in dental caries.

    PubMed

    Lorber, Michael F; Smith Slep, Amy M; Heyman, Richard E; Bretz, Walter A

    2014-01-01

    The association of environmental and genetic variation in caries with child externalizing behavior problems (inattention, hyperactivity, impulsivity, and defiance) was studied in a sample of 239 pairs of 3- to 8-year-old impoverished Brazilian twins. It was hypothesized that externalizing problems would show a stronger positive association with environmental than genetic variation in caries. Univariate twin models were estimated to parse variation in caries into three components: additive genetic (A), shared environment (C) and non-shared environment/error (E). Age-adjusted associations between externalizing problems and each variance component were tested. Contrary to the hypothesis, modest but very consistent negative associations were found between externalizing problems and both genetic and environmental variation in caries. Mutans streptococci and sweetness preference did not explain the negative associations of caries and externalizing problems. Externalizing problems in non-medicated children were associated with less dental decay that could be explained by both genetic and environmental factors. PMID:24852763

  17. Genetic and epigenetic variation in the lineage specification of regulatory T cells

    PubMed Central

    Arvey, Aaron; van der Veeken, Joris; Plitas, George; Rich, Stephen S; Concannon, Patrick; Rudensky, Alexander Y

    2015-01-01

    Regulatory T (Treg) cells, which suppress autoimmunity and other inflammatory states, are characterized by a distinct set of genetic elements controlling their gene expression. However, the extent of genetic and associated epigenetic variation in the Treg cell lineage and its possible relation to disease states in humans remain unknown. We explored evolutionary conservation of regulatory elements and natural human inter-individual epigenetic variation in Treg cells to identify the core transcriptional control program of lineage specification. Analysis of single nucleotide polymorphisms in core lineage-specific enhancers revealed disease associations, which were further corroborated by high-resolution genotyping to fine map causal polymorphisms in lineage-specific enhancers. Our findings suggest that a small set of regulatory elements specify the Treg lineage and that genetic variation in Treg cell-specific enhancers may alter Treg cell function contributing to polygenic disease. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.07571.001 PMID:26510014

  18. Intraspecific genetic variation and species coexistence in plant communities.

    PubMed

    Ehlers, Bodil K; Damgaard, Christian F; Laroche, Fabien

    2016-01-01

    Many studies report that intraspecific genetic variation in plants can affect community composition and coexistence. However, less is known about which traits are responsible and the mechanisms by which variation in these traits affect the associated community. Focusing on plant-plant interactions, we review empirical studies exemplifying how intraspecific genetic variation in functional traits impacts plant coexistence. Intraspecific variation in chemical and architectural traits promotes species coexistence, by both increasing habitat heterogeneity and altering competitive hierarchies. Decomposing species interactions into interactions between genotypes shows that genotype × genotype interactions are often intransitive. The outcome of plant-plant interactions varies with local adaptation to the environment and with dominant neighbour genotypes, and some plants can recognize the genetic identity of neighbour plants if they have a common history of coexistence. Taken together, this reveals a very dynamic nature of coexistence. We outline how more traits mediating plant-plant interactions may be identified, and how future studies could use population genetic surveys of genotype distribution in nature and methods from trait-based ecology to better quantify the impact of intraspecific genetic variation on plant coexistence. PMID:26790707

  19. Human genetic databases and liberty.

    PubMed

    Adalsteinsson, Ragnar

    2004-01-01

    This paper examines an act of the Icelandic Parliament on health-sector databases. Both the legislation itself and the manner in which it was presented by the Government to the Parliament and the general public raise various questions about democratic parliamentary procedures, community consultation, autonomy, privacy, professional confidence, control of health data in hospitals and business relationships between medical doctors and biotechnology corporations. A major question to be asked is: In whose interest is it that such sensitive data are handed over to for-profit corporations? Furthermore, is it within the authority of the legislature to authorize politically appointed boards of health institutes to transfer such data without the direct informed consent of the patient and without the relevant physicians' having a say? Does experience teach us to entrust private companies with sensitive personal data? Should the Government be involved in the research policy-making of the biotechnology companies that have been given access to the genetic data of a population, or should the profit motive be the sole deciding influence? That is, should the interest of the shareholders of the companies prevail over the interest of underprivileged groups who are most in need of new methods or medicine to alleviate their situation due to incurable diseases? Or is the invisible hand of the market the only competent decision-maker? Finally, will the proliferation of databases containing sensitive personal data, such as human genetic data, limit our personal liberty? PMID:16755701

  20. Genetics of Human and Canine Dilated Cardiomyopathy

    PubMed Central

    Simpson, Siobhan; Edwards, Jennifer; Ferguson-Mignan, Thomas F. N.; Cobb, Malcolm; Mongan, Nigel P.; Rutland, Catrin S.

    2015-01-01

    Cardiovascular disease is a leading cause of death in both humans and dogs. Dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) accounts for a large number of these cases, reported to be the third most common form of cardiac disease in humans and the second most common in dogs. In human studies of DCM there are more than 50 genetic loci associated with the disease. Despite canine DCM having similar disease progression to human DCM studies into the genetic basis of canine DCM lag far behind those of human DCM. In this review the aetiology, epidemiology, and clinical characteristics of canine DCM are examined, along with highlighting possible different subtypes of canine DCM and their potential relevance to human DCM. Finally the current position of genetic research into canine and human DCM, including the genetic loci, is identified and the reasons many studies may have failed to find a genetic association with canine DCM are reviewed. PMID:26266250

  1. Evolutionary response when selection and genetic variation covary across environments.

    PubMed

    Wood, Corlett W; Brodie, Edmund D

    2016-10-01

    Although models of evolution usually assume that the strength of selection on a trait and the expression of genetic variation in that trait are independent, whenever the same ecological factor impacts both parameters, a correlation between the two may arise that accelerates trait evolution in some environments and slows it in others. Here, we address the evolutionary consequences and ecological causes of a correlation between selection and expressed genetic variation. Using a simple analytical model, we show that the correlation has a modest effect on the mean evolutionary response and a large effect on its variance, increasing among-population or among-generation variation in the response when positive, and diminishing variation when negative. We performed a literature review to identify the ecological factors that influence selection and expressed genetic variation across traits. We found that some factors - temperature and competition - are unlikely to generate the correlation because they affected one parameter more than the other, and identified others - most notably, environmental novelty - that merit further investigation because little is known about their impact on one of the two parameters. We argue that the correlation between selection and genetic variation deserves attention alongside other factors that promote or constrain evolution in heterogeneous landscapes. PMID:27531600

  2. Hidden genetic variation in the germline genome of Tetrahymena thermophila.

    PubMed

    Dimond, K L; Zufall, R A

    2016-06-01

    Genome architecture varies greatly among eukaryotes. This diversity may profoundly affect the origin and maintenance of genetic variation within a population. Ciliates are microbial eukaryotes with unusual genome features, such as the separation of germline and somatic genomes within a single cell and amitotic division. These features have previously been proposed to increase the rate of molecular evolution in these species. Here, we assessed the fitness effects of genetic variation in the two genomes of natural isolates of the ciliate Tetrahymena thermophila. We find more extensive genetic variation in fitness in the transcriptionally silent germline genome than in the expressed somatic genome. Surprisingly, this variation is not primarily deleterious, but has both beneficial and deleterious effects. We conclude that Tetrahymena genome architecture allows for the maintenance of genetic variation that would otherwise be eliminated by selection. We consider the effect of selection on the two genomes and the impacts of reproductive strategies and the mechanism of sex determination on the structure of this variation. PMID:26998689

  3. Adaptive genetic variation and population differences

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Humans are physiologically and morphologically diverse. Such diversities have been shaped by demographic history and adaptation to local environments, including regional climate, landscape, food source, culture, and pathogens since their expansion within and out of Africa between 50,000 and 100,000 ...

  4. The Genetic Basis for Variation in Sensitivity to Lead Toxicity in Drosophila melanogaster

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Shanshan; Morozova, Tatiana V.; Hussain, Yasmeen N.; Luoma, Sarah E.; McCoy, Lenovia; Yamamoto, Akihiko; Mackay, Trudy F.C.; Anholt, Robert R.H.

    2016-01-01

    Background: Lead toxicity presents a worldwide health problem, especially due to its adverse effects on cognitive development in children. However, identifying genes that give rise to individual variation in susceptibility to lead toxicity is challenging in human populations. Objectives: Our goal was to use Drosophila melanogaster to identify evolutionarily conserved candidate genes associated with individual variation in susceptibility to lead exposure. Methods: To identify candidate genes associated with variation in susceptibility to lead toxicity, we measured effects of lead exposure on development time, viability and adult activity in the Drosophila melanogaster Genetic Reference Panel (DGRP) and performed genome-wide association analyses to identify candidate genes. We used mutants to assess functional causality of candidate genes and constructed a genetic network associated with variation in sensitivity to lead exposure, on which we could superimpose human orthologs. Results: We found substantial heritabilities for all three traits and identified candidate genes associated with variation in susceptibility to lead exposure for each phenotype. The genetic architectures that determine variation in sensitivity to lead exposure are highly polygenic. Gene ontology and network analyses showed enrichment of genes associated with early development and function of the nervous system. Conclusions: Drosophila melanogaster presents an advantageous model to study the genetic underpinnings of variation in susceptibility to lead toxicity. Evolutionary conservation of cellular pathways that respond to toxic exposure allows predictions regarding orthologous genes and pathways across phyla. Thus, studies in the D. melanogaster model system can identify candidate susceptibility genes to guide subsequent studies in human populations. Citation: Zhou S, Morozova TV, Hussain YN, Luoma SE, McCoy L, Yamamoto A, Mackay TF, Anholt RR. 2016. The genetic basis for variation in

  5. Differential genetic variation of chickens and MD vaccine protective efficacy

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Vaccine protective efficacy is determined by multiple factors including host genetics, the type of vaccine, vaccine dosage, the virulence and dose of challenging viruses, and the interval between vaccination and viral challenge. Studies on human immune responses to vaccinations suggest host genetic...

  6. Genetic architecture of regulatory variation in Arabidopsis thaliana.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xu; Cal, Andrew J; Borevitz, Justin O

    2011-05-01

    Studying the genetic regulation of expression variation is a key method to dissect complex phenotypic traits. To examine the genetic architecture of regulatory variation in Arabidopsis thaliana, we performed genome-wide association (GWA) mapping of gene expression in an F(1) hybrid diversity panel. At a genome-wide false discovery rate (FDR) of 0.2, an associated single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) explains >38% of trait variation. In comparison with SNPs that are distant from the genes to which they were associated, locally associated SNPs are preferentially found in regions with extended linkage disequilibrium (LD) and have distinct population frequencies of the derived alleles (where Arabidopsis lyrata has the ancestral allele), suggesting that different selective forces are acting. Locally associated SNPs tend to have additive inheritance, whereas distantly associated SNPs are primarily dominant. In contrast to results from mapping of expression quantitative trait loci (eQTL) in linkage studies, we observe extensive allelic heterogeneity for local regulatory loci in our diversity panel. By association mapping of allele-specific expression (ASE), we detect a significant enrichment for cis-acting variation in local regulatory variation. In addition to gene expression variation, association mapping of splicing variation reveals both local and distant genetic regulation for intron and exon level traits. Finally, we identify candidate genes for 59 diverse phenotypic traits that were mapped to eQTL. PMID:21467266

  7. Genetic variation of St. Louis encephalitis virus

    PubMed Central

    May, Fiona J.; Li, Li; Zhang, Shuliu; Guzman, Hilda; Beasley, David W. C.; Tesh, Robert B.; Higgs, Stephen; Raj, Pushker; Bueno, Rudy; Randle, Yvonne; Chandler, Laura; Barrett, Alan D. T.

    2008-01-01

    St. Louis encephalitis virus (SLEV) has been regularly isolated throughout the Americas since 1933. Previous phylogenetic studies involving 62 isolates have defined seven major lineages (I–VII), further divided into 14 clades. In this study, 28 strains isolated in Texas in 1991 and 2001–2003, and three older, previously unsequenced strains from Jamaica and California were sequenced over the envelope protein gene. The inclusion of these new sequences, and others published since 2001, has allowed better delineation of the previously published SLEV lineages, in particular the clades of lineage II. Phylogenetic analysis of 106 isolates identified 13 clades. All 1991 and 2001–2003 isolates from Nueces, Jefferson and Harris Counties (Texas Gulf Coast) group in clade IIB with other isolates from these counties isolated during the 1980s and 1990s. This lack of evidence for introduction of novel strains into the Texas Gulf Coast over a long period of time is consistent with overwintering of SLEV in this region. Two El Paso isolates, both from 2002, group in clade VA with recent Californian isolates from 1998–2001 and some South American strains with a broad temporal range. Overall, these data are consistent with multiple introductions of SLEV from South America into North America, and provide support for the hypothesis that in most situations, SLEV circulates within a locality, with occasional incursions from other areas. Finally, SLEV has much lower nucleotide (10.1 %) and amino acid variation (2.8 %) than other members of the Japanese encephalitis virus complex (maximum variation 24.6 % nucleotide and 11.8 % amino acid). PMID:18632961

  8. Spatial patterns of variation due to natural selection in humans

    PubMed Central

    Novembre, John; Di Rienzo, Anna

    2013-01-01

    Empowered by technology and sampling efforts designed to facilitate genome-wide association mapping, human geneticists are now studying the geography of genetic variation with unprecedented detail. With high genomic coverage and geographic resolution, these studies are identifying loci with spatial signatures of selection, such as extreme levels of differentiation and correlations with environmental variables. Collectively, patterns at these loci are beginning to provide novel insights into the process of human adaptation. Here we review the challenges of these studies and emerging results, including how human population structure has influenced the response to novel selective pressures. PMID:19823195

  9. MutS Homologues hMSH4 and hMSH5: Genetic Variations, Functions, and Implications in Human Diseases.

    PubMed

    Clark, Nicole; Wu, Xiling; Her, Chengtao

    2013-04-01

    The prominence of the human mismatch repair (MMR) pathway is clearly reflected by the causal link between MMR gene mutations and the occurrence of Lynch syndrome (or HNPCC). The MMR family of proteins also carries out a plethora of diverse cellular functions beyond its primary role in MMR and homologous recombination. In fact, members of the MMR family of proteins are being increasingly recognized as critical mediators between DNA damage repair and cell survival. Thus, a better functional understanding of MMR proteins will undoubtedly aid the development of strategies to effectively enhance apoptotic signaling in response to DNA damage induced by anti-cancer therapeutics. Among the five known human MutS homologs, hMSH4 and hMSH5 form a unique heterocomplex. However, the expression profiles of the two genes are not correlated in a number of cell types, suggesting that they may function independently as well. Consistent with this, these two proteins are promiscuous and thought to play distinct roles through interacting with different binding partners. Here, we describe the gene and protein structures of eukaryotic MSH4 and MSH5 with a particular emphasis on their human homologues, and we discuss recent findings of the roles of these two genes in DNA damage response and repair. Finally, we delineate the potential links of single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) loci of these two genes with several human diseases. PMID:24082819

  10. [Bioethical principles concerning human genetic data].

    PubMed

    Cruz-Coke, Ricardo

    2003-01-01

    UNESCO'S Universal declaration on the human genome and human rights (1997) has been accepted by the international scientific community. To apply these laws, it is necessary to get more specific rules about data regulation, human genetic samples and its derived information in biomedic research. Indeed, genetic material recollection, processing, use and storing, has potential risks over human rights' protection and exercise. The author, member of UNESCO'S intergovernmental Bioethics Committee which approved the final draft in June 2003, has taken part in the writing of the final text of an international declaration about human genetic data, whose abbreviate text is described and commented in this communication. PMID:15032097

  11. Genetic variation in resistance to ionizing radiation

    SciTech Connect

    Ayala, F.J.

    1992-01-01

    Results of an investigation of the gene coding for Cu, Zn superoxide dismutase (Sod) in Drosophila melanogaster seeking to understand the enzyme's role in cell protection against ionizing radiation are reported. Components of the investigation include molecular characterization of the gene; measuring the response of different genotypes to increasing levels of radiation; and investigation of the processes that maintain the Sod polymorphism in populations. While two alleles, S and F, are commonly found at the Sod locus in natural populations of D. melanogaster we have isolated from a natural population a null (CA1) mutant that yields only 3.5% of normal SOD activity. The S, F, and CA1 alleles provide a model system to investigate SOD-dependent radioresistance, because each allele yields different levels of SOD, so that S > F >> CAl. The radioprotective effects of SOD can be established by showing protective effects for the various genotypes that correspond to those inequalities. Because the allele variants studied are derived from natural populations, the proposed investigation avoids problems that arise when mutants obtained my mutagenesis are used. Moreover, each allele is studied in multiple genetic backgrounds, so that we correct for effects attributable to other loci by randomizing these effects.

  12. Intracolonial genetic variation in the scleractinian coral Seriatopora hystrix

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maier, E.; Buckenmaier, A.; Tollrian, R.; Nürnberger, B.

    2012-06-01

    In recent years, increasing numbers of studies revealed intraorganismal genetic variation, primarily in modular organisms like plants or colonial marine invertebrates. Two underlying mechanisms are distinguished: Mosaicism is caused by somatic mutation, whereas chimerism originates from allogeneic fusion. We investigated the occurrence of intracolonial genetic variation at microsatellite loci in five natural populations of the scleractinian coral Seriatopora hystrix on the Great Barrier Reef. This coral is a widely distributed, brooding species that is at present a target of intensive population genetic research on reproduction and dispersal patterns. From each of 155 S. hystrix colonies, either two or three samples were genotyped at five or six loci. Twenty-seven (~17%) genetically heterogeneous colonies were found. Statistical analyses indicated the occurrence of both mosaicism and chimerism. In most cases, intracolonial variation was found only at a single allele. Our analyses suggest that somatic mutations present a major source of genetic heterogeneity within a single colony. Moreover, we observed large, apparently stable chimeric colonies that harbored clearly distinct genotypes and contrast these findings with the patterns typically observed in laboratory-based experiments. We discuss the error that mosaicism and chimerism introduce into population genetic analyses.

  13. Human longevity: Genetics or Lifestyle? It takes two to tango.

    PubMed

    Passarino, Giuseppe; De Rango, Francesco; Montesanto, Alberto

    2016-01-01

    Healthy aging and longevity in humans are modulated by a lucky combination of genetic and non-genetic factors. Family studies demonstrated that about 25 % of the variation in human longevity is due to genetic factors. The search for genetic and molecular basis of aging has led to the identification of genes correlated with the maintenance of the cell and of its basic metabolism as the main genetic factors affecting the individual variation of the aging phenotype. In addition, studies on calorie restriction and on the variability of genes associated with nutrient-sensing signaling, have shown that ipocaloric diet and/or a genetically efficient metabolism of nutrients, can modulate lifespan by promoting an efficient maintenance of the cell and of the organism. Recently, epigenetic studies have shown that epigenetic modifications, modulated by both genetic background and lifestyle, are very sensitive to the aging process and can either be a biomarker of the quality of aging or influence the rate and the quality of aging. On the whole, current studies are showing that interventions modulating the interaction between genetic background and environment is essential to determine the individual chance to attain longevity. PMID:27053941

  14. Genetic Variation of Capsid Protein VP7 in Genotype G4 Human Rotavirus Strains: Simultaneous Emergence and Spread of Different Lineages in Argentina

    PubMed Central

    Bok, Karin; Matson, David O.; Gomez, Jorge A.

    2002-01-01

    Rotavirus is the most-common cause of severe diarrhea in young children. Complete rotavirus characterization includes determination of the antigenic type of the two outer capsid proteins, VP7 and VP4, designated G and P types, respectively. During a nationwide rotavirus surveillance study, genotype G4 frequency increased during the second year. To evaluate further the mechanism of emergence and the relationship among G4 strains, the genetic diversity of VP7 capsid protein in these samples was studied in detail. Overall nucleotide sequence divergence ranged from less than 0.1 to 19.5%, a higher divergence than that observed for other rotavirus G types (0.1 to 9%). Sequences were classified into two major lineages (designated I and II) based on their nucleotide distances. The most heterogeneous lineage was further subdivided into four sublineages (designated Ia to Id). Most Argentine sequences were of sublineages Ib and Ic, which were confirmed to be independent sequence clusters by parsimony analysis. This study describes different lineages and sublineages within G4 strains and shows that Argentine strains are distantly related to reference strain ST3. The appearance of at least two G4 genotype (sub)lineages during 1998 demonstrates that the increased frequency of these strains was due to the synchronized emergence of different groups of strains. PMID:12037057

  15. Most genetic risk for autism resides with common variation.

    PubMed

    Gaugler, Trent; Klei, Lambertus; Sanders, Stephan J; Bodea, Corneliu A; Goldberg, Arthur P; Lee, Ann B; Mahajan, Milind; Manaa, Dina; Pawitan, Yudi; Reichert, Jennifer; Ripke, Stephan; Sandin, Sven; Sklar, Pamela; Svantesson, Oscar; Reichenberg, Abraham; Hultman, Christina M; Devlin, Bernie; Roeder, Kathryn; Buxbaum, Joseph D

    2014-08-01

    A key component of genetic architecture is the allelic spectrum influencing trait variability. For autism spectrum disorder (herein termed autism), the nature of the allelic spectrum is uncertain. Individual risk-associated genes have been identified from rare variation, especially de novo mutations. From this evidence, one might conclude that rare variation dominates the allelic spectrum in autism, yet recent studies show that common variation, individually of small effect, has substantial impact en masse. At issue is how much of an impact relative to rare variation this common variation has. Using a unique epidemiological sample from Sweden, new methods that distinguish total narrow-sense heritability from that due to common variation and synthesis of results from other studies, we reach several conclusions about autism's genetic architecture: its narrow-sense heritability is ∼52.4%, with most due to common variation, and rare de novo mutations contribute substantially to individual liability, yet their contribution to variance in liability, 2.6%, is modest compared to that for heritable variation. PMID:25038753

  16. Genetic Variation of Bordetella pertussis in Austria.

    PubMed

    Wagner, Birgit; Melzer, Helen; Freymüller, Georg; Stumvoll, Sabine; Rendi-Wagner, Pamela; Paulke-Korinek, Maria; Repa, Andreas; Mooi, Frits R; Kollaritsch, Herwig; Mittermayer, Helmut; Kessler, Harald H; Stanek, Gerold; Steinborn, Ralf; Duchêne, Michael; Wiedermann, Ursula

    2015-01-01

    In Austria, vaccination coverage against Bordetella pertussis infections during infancy is estimated at around 90%. Within the last years, however, the number of pertussis cases has increased steadily, not only in children but also in adolescents and adults, indicating both insufficient herd immunity and vaccine coverage. Waning immunity in the host and/or adaptation of the bacterium to the immunised hosts could contribute to the observed re-emergence of pertussis. In this study we therefore addressed the genetic variability in B. pertussis strains from several Austrian cities. Between the years 2002 and 2008, 110 samples were collected from Vienna (n = 32), Linz (n = 63) and Graz (n = 15) by nasopharyngeal swabs. DNA was extracted from the swabs, and bacterial sequence polymorphisms were examined by MLVA (multiple-locus variable number of tandem repeat analysis) (n = 77), by PCR amplification and conventional Sanger sequencing of the polymorphic regions of the prn (pertactin) gene (n = 110), and by amplification refractory mutation system quantitative PCR (ARMS-qPCR) (n = 110) to directly address polymorphisms in the genes encoding two pertussis toxin subunits (ptxA and ptxB), a fimbrial adhesin (fimD), tracheal colonisation factor (tcfA), and the virulence sensor protein (bvgS). Finally, the ptxP promoter region was screened by ARMS-qPCR for the presence of the ptxP3 allele, which has been associated with elevated production of pertussis toxin. The MLVA analysis revealed the highest level of polymorphisms with an absence of MLVA Type 29, which is found outside Austria. Only Prn subtypes Prn1/7, Prn2 and Prn3 were found with a predominance of the non-vaccine type Prn2. The analysis of the ptxA, ptxB, fimD, tcfA and bvgS polymorphisms showed a genotype mixed between the vaccine strain Tohama I and a clinical isolate from 2006 (L517). The major part of the samples (93%) displayed the ptxP3 allele. The consequences for the vaccination strategy are discussed. PMID

  17. Androgens and doping tests: genetic variation and pit-falls

    PubMed Central

    Rane, Anders; Ekström, Lena

    2012-01-01

    The large variation in disposition known for most drugs is also true for anabolic androgenic steroids. Genetic factors are probably the single most important cause of this variation. Further, there are reasons to believe that there is a corresponding variation in efficacy of doping agents. Doped individuals employ a large variety of doping strategies in respect of choice of substance, dose, dose interval, duration of treatment and use of other drugs for enforcement of effects or correction of side effects. Metabolic steps up-stream and down-stream of testosterone are genetically variable and contribute substantially to the variation in disposition of testosterone, the most common doping agent in sports and in society. Large inter- and intra-ethnic variation in testosterone glucuronidation and excretion is described as well as the pit-falls in evaluation of testosterone doping test results. The hydrolysis and bioactivation of testosterone enanthate is also genetically variable yielding a 2–3 fold variation in excretion rate and serum concentration, thereby implicating a substantial variation in ‘efficacy’ of testosterone. Given this situation it is logical to adopt the new findings in the doping control programme. The population based cut-off level for the testosterone : epitestosterone ratio should be replaced by a Bayesian interpretation of consecutive tests in the same individual. When combined with the above genetic information the sensitivity of the test is considerably improved. The combination of the three approaches should reduce the rate of falsely negative or positive results and the number of expensive follow-up tests, stipulated by the World Anti-Doping Agency. PMID:22506612

  18. ENGINES: exploring single nucleotide variation in entire human genomes

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Next generation ultra-sequencing technologies are starting to produce extensive quantities of data from entire human genome or exome sequences, and therefore new software is needed to present and analyse this vast amount of information. The 1000 Genomes project has recently released raw data for 629 complete genomes representing several human populations through their Phase I interim analysis and, although there are certain public tools available that allow exploration of these genomes, to date there is no tool that permits comprehensive population analysis of the variation catalogued by such data. Description We have developed a genetic variant site explorer able to retrieve data for Single Nucleotide Variation (SNVs), population by population, from entire genomes without compromising future scalability and agility. ENGINES (ENtire Genome INterface for Exploring SNVs) uses data from the 1000 Genomes Phase I to demonstrate its capacity to handle large amounts of genetic variation (>7.3 billion genotypes and 28 million SNVs), as well as deriving summary statistics of interest for medical and population genetics applications. The whole dataset is pre-processed and summarized into a data mart accessible through a web interface. The query system allows the combination and comparison of each available population sample, while searching by rs-number list, chromosome region, or genes of interest. Frequency and FST filters are available to further refine queries, while results can be visually compared with other large-scale Single Nucleotide Polymorphism (SNP) repositories such as HapMap or Perlegen. Conclusions ENGINES is capable of accessing large-scale variation data repositories in a fast and comprehensive manner. It allows quick browsing of whole genome variation, while providing statistical information for each variant site such as allele frequency, heterozygosity or FST values for genetic differentiation. Access to the data mart generating scripts and to

  19. Permanence or change? The meaning of genetic variation

    PubMed Central

    Salzano, Francisco M.

    2000-01-01

    Selected aspects of the evolutionary process and more specifically of the genetic variation are considered, with an emphasis in studies performed by my group. One key aspect of evolution seems to be the concomitant occurrence of dichotomic, contradictory (dialect) processes. Genetic variation is structured, and the dynamics of change at one level is not necessarily paralleled by that in another. The pathogenesis-related protein superfamily can be cited as an example in which permanence (the maintenance of certain key genetic features) coexists with change (modifications that led to different functions in different classes of organisms). Relationships between structure and function are exemplified by studies with hemoglobin Porto Alegre. The genetic structure of tribal populations may differ in important aspects from that of industrialized societies. Evolutionary histories also may differ when considered through the investigation of patrilineal or matrilineal lineages. Global evaluations taking into consideration all of these aspects are needed if we really want to understand the meaning of genetic variation. PMID:10805790

  20. Genetic variation in the widespread lichenicolous fungus Marchandiomyces corallinus.

    PubMed

    Molina, M Carmen; DePriest, Paula T; Lawrey, James D

    2005-01-01

    The lichenicolous basidiomycete Marchandiomyces corallinus is widely distributed in North America and Europe, where it commonly is found on a variety of lichens. Theoretically either of these characteristics, a wide geographic range or generalized host ecology, could provide opportunities for genetic differentiation within this species. To determine how genetic variation is partitioned in M. corallinus, 12 fungal isolates were obtained from locations in North America and Europe; at two locations, in Washington County, Maine, and on the Isle of Mull in Scotland, fungi also were isolated from different lichen hosts. Vegetative mycelial compatibility tests were used to determine compatibility groupings from among the isolates; in addition, several PCR amplification products (RAPD, nuITS rDNA) were obtained for each isolate. A number of distinct compatibility groups were recognizable based on geography, not host ecology. In addition compatible isolates always were restricted to either North America or Europe. However RAPD markers indicated that compatible isolates are not always genetically identical. The presence of sequence heterozygosity at specific positions indicated that the isolates are heterokaryotic and a number of distinct haplotypes could be identified based on ITS variation at three separate locations. This type of genetic variation in these fungi suggests that sexual recombination is possible and that genetic differentiation has taken place recently as a result of geographic isolation, not host switching. PMID:16396353

  1. Obesity, hypertension and genetic variation in the TIGER Study

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Obesity and hypertension are multifactoral conditions in which the onset and severity of the conditions are influenced by the interplay of genetic and environmental factors. We hypothesize that multiple genes and environmental factors account for a significant amount of variation in BMI and blood pr...

  2. GENETIC VARIATION IN CARIBOU AND REINDEER (RANGIFER TARANDUS)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetic variation at seven microsatellite DNA loci was quantified in 19 herds of caribou and reindeer (Rangifer tarandus) from North America, Scandinavia, and Russia. There is an average of 2.0 to 6.6 alleles per locus and observed individual heterozygosity of 0.33-0.50 in most herds. A herd on Sv...

  3. Genetic variation in testis size and testicular development

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Breed differences in sperm production have been described in a number of studies with these differences reflecting variation in testicular size (Ford et al., 2006; Smital, 2008). Within a given breed or genetic line of boars, sperm production increases as testicular size increases. Furthermore, the...

  4. Genetic variation in resistance to infection and inflammation

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genes determine functions of the neuroendocrine and immunological systems that affect an animal’s ability to cope with stress, resulting in resistance or susceptibility to infection and inflammation. In this study, genetic variation in responses to lipopolysaccharide (LPS) challenge were examined i...

  5. Impact of restricted marital practices on genetic variation in an endogamous Gujarati group

    PubMed Central

    Pemberton, Trevor J.; Li, Fang-Yuan; Hanson, Erin K.; Mehta, Niyati U.; Choi, Sunju; Ballantyne, Jack; Belmont, John W.; Rosenberg, Noah A.; Tyler-Smith, Chris; Patel, Pragna I.

    2012-01-01

    Recent studies have examined the influence on patterns of human genetic variation of a variety of cultural practices. In India, centuries-old marriage customs have introduced extensive social structuring into the contemporary population, potentially with significant consequences for genetic variation. Social stratification in India is evident as social classes that are defined by endogamous groups known as castes. Within a caste, there exist endogamous groups known as gols (marriage circles), each of which comprises a small number of exogamous gotra (lineages). Thus, while consanguinity is strictly avoided and some randomness in mate selection occurs within the gol, gene flow is limited with populations outside the gol. Gujarati Patels practice this form of “exogamic endogamy.” We have analyzed genetic variation in one such group of Gujarati Patels, the Chha Gaam Patels (CGP), who comprise individuals from six villages. Population structure analysis of 1,200 autosomal loci offers support for the existence of distinctive multilocus genotypes in the CGP with respect to both non-Gujaratis and other Gujaratis, and indicates that CGP individuals are genetically very similar. Analysis of Y-chromosomal and mitochondrial haplotypes provides support for both patrilocal and patrilineal practices within the gol, and a low-level of female gene flow into the gol. Our study illustrates how the practice of gol endogamy has introduced fine-scale genetic structure into the population of India, and contributes more generally to an understanding of the way in which marriage practices affect patterns of genetic variation. PMID:22729696

  6. Most genetic risk for autism resides with common variation

    PubMed Central

    Gaugler, Trent; Klei, Lambertus; Sanders, Stephan J.; Bodea, Corneliu A.; Goldberg, Arthur P.; Lee, Ann B.; Mahajan, Milind; Manaa, Dina; Pawitan, Yudi; Reichert, Jennifer; Ripke, Stephan; Sandin, Sven; Sklar, Pamela; Svantesson, Oscar; Reichenberg, Abraham; Hultman, Christina M.; Devlin, Bernie

    2014-01-01

    A key component of genetic architecture is the allelic spectrum influencing trait variability. For autism spectrum disorder (henceforth autism) the nature of its allelic spectrum is uncertain. Individual risk genes have been identified from rare variation, especially de novo mutations1–8. From this evidence one might conclude that rare variation dominates its allelic spectrum, yet recent studies show that common variation, individually of small effect, has substantial impact en masse9,10. At issue is how much of an impact relative to rare variation. Using a unique epidemiological sample from Sweden, novel methods that distinguish total narrow-sense heritability from that due to common variation, and by synthesizing results from other studies, we reach several conclusions about autism’s genetic architecture: its narrow-sense heritability is ≈54% and most traces to common variation; rare de novo mutations contribute substantially to individuals’ liability; still their contribution to variance in liability, 2.6%, is modest compared to heritable variation. PMID:25038753

  7. Genetic variation, predator–prey interactions and food web structure

    PubMed Central

    Moya-Laraño, Jordi

    2011-01-01

    Food webs are networks of species that feed on each other. The role that within-population phenotypic and genetic variation plays in food web structure is largely unknown. Here, I show via simulation how variation in two key traits, growth rates and phenology, by influencing the variability of body sizes present through time, can potentially affect several structural parameters in the direction of enhancing food web persistence: increased connectance, decreased interaction strengths, increased variation among interaction strengths and increased degree of omnivory. I discuss other relevant traits whose variation could affect the structure of food webs, such as morphological and additional life-history traits, as well as animal personalities. Furthermore, trait variation could also contribute to the stability of food web modules through metacommunity dynamics. I propose future research to help establish a link between within-population variation and food web structure. If appropriately established, such a link could have important consequences for biological conservation, as it would imply that preserving (functional) genetic variation within populations could ensure the preservation of entire communities. PMID:21444316

  8. The Genetics of Blood Pressure and Hypertension: the role of rare variation

    PubMed Central

    Doris, Peter A.

    2013-01-01

    Summary The role of heredity in influencing blood pressure and risk of hypertension is well recognized. However, progress in identifying specific genetic variation that contributes to heritability is very limited. This is in spite of completion of the human genome sequence, the development of extraordinary amounts of information about genome sequence variation and the investigation of blood pressure inheritance in linkage analysis, candidate gene studies and, most recently genome-wide association studies. This paper considers the progress of this research and the obstacles that have been encountered. This work has made clear that the genetic architecture of blood pressure regulation in the population is not likely to be shaped by commonly occurring genetic variation in a discrete set of blood pressure-influencing genes. Rather heritability may be accounted for by rare variation that has its biggest impact within pedigrees rather than on the population at large. Rare variants in a wide range of genes are likely to be the focus of high blood pressure genetics for the next several years and the emerging strategies that can be applied to uncover this genetic variation and the problems that must confronted are considered. PMID:21129164

  9. Diversity of human copy number variation and multicopy genes.

    PubMed

    Sudmant, Peter H; Kitzman, Jacob O; Antonacci, Francesca; Alkan, Can; Malig, Maika; Tsalenko, Anya; Sampas, Nick; Bruhn, Laurakay; Shendure, Jay; Eichler, Evan E

    2010-10-29

    Copy number variants affect both disease and normal phenotypic variation, but those lying within heavily duplicated, highly identical sequence have been difficult to assay. By analyzing short-read mapping depth for 159 human genomes, we demonstrated accurate estimation of absolute copy number for duplications as small as 1.9 kilobase pairs, ranging from 0 to 48 copies. We identified 4.1 million "singly unique nucleotide" positions informative in distinguishing specific copies and used them to genotype the copy and content of specific paralogs within highly duplicated gene families. These data identify human-specific expansions in genes associated with brain development, reveal extensive population genetic diversity, and detect signatures consistent with gene conversion in the human species. Our approach makes ~1000 genes accessible to genetic studies of disease association. PMID:21030649

  10. Genetic integration of molar cusp size variation in baboons.

    PubMed

    Koh, Christina; Bates, Elizabeth; Broughton, Elizabeth; Do, Nicholas T; Fletcher, Zachary; Mahaney, Michael C; Hlusko, Leslea J

    2010-06-01

    Many studies of primate diversity and evolution rely on dental morphology for insight into diet, behavior, and phylogenetic relationships. Consequently, variation in molar cusp size has increasingly become a phenotype of interest. In 2007 we published a quantitative genetic analysis of mandibular molar cusp size variation in baboons. Those results provided more questions than answers, as the pattern of genetic integration did not fit predictions from odontogenesis. To follow up, we expanded our study to include data from the maxillary molar cusps. Here we report on these later analyses, as well as inter-arch comparisons with the mandibular data. We analyzed variation in two-dimensional maxillary molar cusp size using data collected from a captive pedigreed breeding colony of baboons, Papio hamadryas, housed at the Southwest National Primate Research Center. These analyses show that variation in maxillary molar cusp size is heritable and sexually dimorphic. We also estimated additive genetic correlations between cusps on the same crown, homologous cusps along the tooth row, and maxillary and mandibular cusps. The pattern for maxillary molars yields genetic correlations of one between the paracone-metacone and protocone-hypocone. Bivariate analyses of cuspal homologues on adjacent teeth yield correlations that are high or not significantly different from one. Between dental arcades, the nonoccluding cusps consistently yield high genetic correlations, especially the metaconid-paracone and metaconid-metacone. This pattern of genetic correlation does not immediately accord with the pattern of development and/or calcification, however these results do follow predictions that can be made from the evolutionary history of the tribosphenic molar. PMID:20034010

  11. Genetic integration of molar cusp size variation in baboons

    PubMed Central

    Koh, Christina; Bates, Elizabeth; Broughton, Elizabeth; Do, Nicholas T.; Fletcher, Zachary; Mahaney, Michael C.; Hlusko, Leslea J.

    2010-01-01

    Many studies of primate diversity and evolution rely on dental morphology for insight into diet, behavior, and phylogenetic relationships. Consequently, variation in molar cusp size has increasingly become a phenotype of interest. In 2007 we published a quantitative genetic analysis of mandibular molar cusp size variation in baboons. Those results provided more questions than answers, as the pattern of genetic integration did not fit predictions from odontogenesis. To follow up, we expanded our study to include data from the maxillary molar cusps. Here we report on these later analyses, as well as inter-arch comparisons with the mandibular data. We analyzed variation in two-dimensional maxillary molar cusp size using data collected from a captive pedigreed breeding colony of baboons, Papio hamadryas, housed at the Southwest National Primate Research Center. These analyses show that variation in maxillary molar cusp size is heritable and sexually dimorphic. We also estimated additive genetic correlations between cusps on the same crown, homologous cusps along the tooth row, and maxillary and mandibular cusps. The pattern for maxillary molars yields genetic correlations of one between the paracone-metacone and protocone-hypocone. Bivariate analyses of cuspal homologues on adjacent teeth yield correlations that are high or not significantly different from one. Between dental arcades, the non-occluding cusps consistently yield high genetic correlations, especially the metaconid-paracone and metaconid-metacone. This pattern of genetic correlation does not immediately accord with the pattern of development and/or calcification, however these results do follow predictions that can be made from the evolutionary history of the tribosphenic molar. PMID:20034010

  12. Mouse genetic and phenotypic resources for human genetics

    PubMed Central

    Schofield, Paul N.; Hoehndorf, Robert; Gkoutos, Georgios V.

    2012-01-01

    The use of model organisms to provide information on gene function has proved to be a powerful approach to our understanding of both human disease and fundamental mammalian biology. Large-scale community projects using mice, based on forward and reverse genetics, and now the pan-genomic phenotyping efforts of the International Mouse Phenotyping Consortium (IMPC), are generating resources on an unprecedented scale which will be extremely valuable to human genetics and medicine. We discuss the nature and availability of data, mice and ES cells from these large-scale programmes, the use of these resources to help prioritise and validate candidate genes in human genetic association studies, and how they can improve our understanding of the underlying pathobiology of human disease. PMID:22422677

  13. Genetic variation in brain-derived neurotrophic factor val66met allele is associated with altered serotonin-1A receptor binding in human brain.

    PubMed

    Lan, Martin J; Ogden, R Todd; Huang, Yung-yu; Oquendo, Maria A; Sullivan, Gregory M; Miller, Jeffrey; Milak, Matthew; Mann, J John; Parsey, Ramin V

    2014-07-01

    Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) regulates brain synaptic plasticity. BDNF affects serotonin signaling, increases serotonin levels in brain tissue and prevents degeneration of serotonin neurons. These effects have hardly been studied in human brain. We examined the relationship of the functional val66met polymorphism of the BDNF gene to serotonin 1A (5-HT(1A)) receptor binding in vivo. 50 healthy volunteers (HV) and 50 acutely depressed, unmedicated patients with major depressive disorder (MDD) underwent PET scanning with the 5-HT(1A) receptor ligand, [(11)C]WAY-100635 and a metabolite corrected arterial input function. A linear mixed effects model compared 5-HT(1A) receptor binding potential (BP(F), proportional to the number of available receptors) in 13 brain regions of interest between met allele carriers (met/met and val/met) and noncarriers (val/val) using sex and C-1019G genotype of the 5-HT(1A) receptor promoter functional polymorphism as covariates. There was an interaction between diagnosis and allele (F=4.23, df=1, 94, p=0.042), such that met allele carriers had 17.4% lower BP(F) than non-met carriers in the HV group (t=2.6, df=96, p=0.010), but not in the MDD group (t=-0.4, df=96, p=0.58). These data are consistent with a model where the met allele of the val66met polymorphism causes less proliferation of serotonin synapses, and consequently fewer 5-HT(1A) receptors. In MDD, however, the effect of the val66met polymorphism is not detectable, possibly due to a ceiling effect of over-expression of 5-HT(1A) receptors in mood disorders. PMID:24607934

  14. Genetic variation and spread pattern of invasive Conyza sumatrensis around China’s Three Gorges Dam

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ren, Ming-Xun; Li, Xiao-Qiong; Ding, Jian-Qing

    2010-11-01

    Genetic diversity and structure within and between 17 populations of invasive Conyza sumatrensis (Asteraceae) around the world's biggest hydroelectric dam (Three Gorges Dam (TGD) on the Yangtze River in China) and nearby localities were surveyed using inter-simple sequence repeat (ISSR) markers to determine the spread pattern of this invader in TGD and nearby regions. A total of 434 individuals were analysed, for which 15 ISSR primers amplified 81 bands, with 54 (66.7%) being polymorphic. The percentage of polymorphic loci within a population ranged from 31% to 58%, Nei's gene diversity was 0.385 ± 0.056, and mean Shannon's Index was 0.5815 ± 0.0833, indicating a high genetic variation in this self-fertile plant. Mass seed production and multiple introductions associated with dam construction and local development were thought to be responsible for the high level of genetic variation. Analysis of Molecular Variance revealed 36.5% of genetic variation residing within populations, 35.0% among populations within regions, and 28.5% among the three regions: TGD, upper reaches of TGD, and lower reaches of TGD. Most populations were genetically related to their nearest neighbors, while gene flow (mainly via seed movement) across TGD existed. Long-distance dispersal of seeds and pollen such as by water current, wind and human transportation could explain the low level of geographic structure of genetic variation. The highest genetic variation was found in a population in TGD, and most populations from TGD showed closer genetic relationship to the lower reaches population, which indicated that C. sumatrensis at TGD has likely experienced multiple introductions mainly from lower reaches, which is near the area of primary introduction (southern China) of C. sumatrensis.

  15. Genetic variability in human immunodeficiency viruses.

    PubMed

    Alizon, M; Montagnier, L

    1987-01-01

    The genetic polymorphism of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) has been established. In addition to the nucleic acid variations responsible for the restriction map polymorphism, isolates of HIV differ significantly at the protein level, especially in the envelope, in terms of amino acid substitutions and reciprocal insertions-deletions. In this investigation, molecular cloning and nucleotide sequencing of the genomes of 2 HIV isolates obtained from patients in Zaire were carried out. The 1st isolate was recovered in 1983 from a 24-year-old woman with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS); the 2nd was isolated in 1985 from a 7-year-old boy with AIDS-related complex (ARC). The genetic organization of these isolates was identical to that found in other HIV isolates from the US and Europe, particularly in terms of the conservation of the central region located between the pol and env genes composed of a series of overlapping open reading frames. There were, however, substantial differences in the primary structure of the viral proteins, with env being more variable than the gag and pol genes. Alignment of the envelopes revealed hypervariable domains with a great number of mutations and reciprocal insertions and deletions. Overall, this analysis suggests that the African and American HIV infections have a common origin given their identical genetic organization. The sequence variability reflects a divergent evolutionary process, and the fact that the 2 Zairian isolates were more divergent than American isolates studied by others indicates a longer evolution of HIV in Africa. An essential research goal is to identify the HIV envelope domains responsible for the virus-cellular surface antigen interaction since an immune response against these epitopes could elicit neutralizing antibodies for use in a vaccine. PMID:3439717

  16. Evolutionary developmental genetics of fruit morphological variation within the Solanaceae

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Li; Li, Jing; Zhao, Jing; He, Chaoying

    2015-01-01

    Morphological variations of fruits such as shape and size, and color are a result of adaptive evolution. The evolution of morphological novelties is particularly intriguing. An understanding of these evolutionary processes calls for the elucidation of the developmental and genetic mechanisms that result in particular fruit morphological characteristics, which determine seed dispersal. The genetic and developmental basis for fruit morphological variation was established at a microevolutionary time scale. Here, we summarize the progress on the evolutionary developmental genetics of fruit size, shape and color in the Solanaceae. Studies suggest that the recruitment of a pre-existing gene and subsequent modification of its interaction and regulatory networks are frequently involved in the evolution of morphological diversity. The basic mechanisms underlying changes in plant morphology are alterations in gene expression and/or gene function. We also deliberate on the future direction in evolutionary developmental genetics of fruit morphological variation such as fruit type. These studies will provide insights into plant developmental processes and will help to improve the productivity and fruit quality of crops. PMID:25918515

  17. Genetic variation and shared biological susceptibility underlying comorbidity in neuropsychiatry.

    PubMed

    Palomo, Tomas; Kostrzewa, Richard M; Beninger, Richard J; Archer, Trevor

    2007-07-01

    Genetic factors underlying alcoholism, substance abuse, antisocial and violent behaviour, psychosis, schizophrenia and psychopathy are emerging to implicate dopaminergic and cannabinoid, but also monoaminergic and glutamatergic systems through the maze of promoter genes and polymorphisms. Candidate gene association studies suggest the involvement of a range of genes in different disorders of CNS structure and function. Indices of comorbidity both complicate the array of gene-involvement and provide a substrate of hazardous interactivity. The putative role of the serotonin transporter gene in affective-dissociative spectrum disorders presents both plausible genetic variation and complication of comorbidity The position of genetic variation is further complicated through ethnic, contextual and social factors that provide geometric progressions in the comordity already underlying diagnostic obstacles. The concept of shared biological susceptibility to two or more disorder conditions of comorbidity seems a recurring observation, e.g., bipolar disorder with alcoholism or schizophrenia with alcohol/substance abuse or diabetes with schizopsychotic disorder. Several lines of evidence seem to suggest that the factors influencing variation in one set of symptoms and those affecting one or more disorders are observed to a marked extent which ought to facilitate the search for susceptibility genes in comorbid brain disorders. Identification of regional genetic factors is awaited for a more compelling outline that ought eventually to lead to greater efficacy of symptom-disorder arrangements and an augmentation of current pharmacological treatment therapies. PMID:17513198

  18. Genetic and Environmental Contributions to Variation in Baboon Cranial Morphology

    PubMed Central

    Roseman, Charles C.; Willmore, Katherine E.; Rogers, Jeffrey; Hildebolt, Charles; Sadler, Brooke E.; Richtsmeier, Joan T.; Cheverud, James M.

    2011-01-01

    The development, function, and integration of morphological characteristics are all hypothesized to influence the utility of traits for phylogenetic reconstruction by affecting the way in which morphological characteristics evolve. We use a baboon model to test the hypotheses about phenotypic and quantitative genetic variation of traits in the cranium that bear on a phenotype’s propensity to evolve. We test the hypotheses that: 1) individual traits in different functionally and developmentally defined regions of the cranium are differentially environmentally, genetically, and phenotypically variable; 2) genetic covariance with other traits constrains traits in one region of the cranium more than those in others; 3) and regions of the cranium subject to different levels of mechanical strain differ in the magnitude of variation in individual traits. We find that the levels of environmental and genetic variation in individual traits are randomly distributed across regions of the cranium rather than being structured by developmental origin or degree of exposure to strain. Individual traits in the cranial vault tend to be more constrained by covariance with other traits than those in other regions. Traits in regions subject to high degrees of strain during mastication are not any more variable at any level than other traits. If these results are generalizable to other populations, they indicate that there is no reason to suppose that individual traits from any one part of the cranium are intrinsically less useful for reconstructing patterns of evolution than those from any other part. PMID:20623673

  19. Influence of barriers to movement on within-watershed genetic variation of coastal cutthroat trout

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wofford, John E.B.; Gresswell, Robert E.; Banks, M.A.

    2005-01-01

    Because human land use activities often result in increased fragmentation of aquatic and terrestrial habitats, a better understanding of the effects of fragmentation on the genetic heterogeneity of animal populations may be useful for effective management. We used eight microsatellites to examine the genetic structure of coastal cutthroat trout (Oncorhynchus clarki clarki) in Camp Creek, an isolated headwater stream in western Oregon. Our objectives were to determine if coastal cutthroat trout were genetically structured within streams and to assess the effects of natural and anthropogenic barriers on coastal cutthroat trout genetic variation. Fish sampling occurred at 10 locations, and allele frequencies differed significantly among all sampling sections. Dispersal barriers strongly influenced coastal cutthroat trout genetic structure and were associated with reduced genetic diversity and increased genetic differentiation. Results indicate that Camp Creek coastal cutthroat trout exist as many small, partially independent populations that are strongly affected by genetic drift. In headwater streams, barriers to movement can result in genetic and demographic isolation leading to reduced coastal cutthroat trout genetic diversity, and potentially compromising long-term population persistence. When habitat fragmentation eliminates gene flow among small populations, similar results may occur in other species.

  20. A genetic basis for the variation in the vulnerability of cancer to DNA damage

    PubMed Central

    Yard, Brian D.; Adams, Drew J.; Chie, Eui Kyu; Tamayo, Pablo; Battaglia, Jessica S.; Gopal, Priyanka; Rogacki, Kevin; Pearson, Bradley E.; Phillips, James; Raymond, Daniel P.; Pennell, Nathan A.; Almeida, Francisco; Cheah, Jaime H.; Clemons, Paul A.; Shamji, Alykhan; Peacock, Craig D.; Schreiber, Stuart L.; Hammerman, Peter S.; Abazeed, Mohamed E.

    2016-01-01

    Radiotherapy is not currently informed by the genetic composition of an individual patient's tumour. To identify genetic features regulating survival after DNA damage, here we conduct large-scale profiling of cellular survival after exposure to radiation in a diverse collection of 533 genetically annotated human tumour cell lines. We show that sensitivity to radiation is characterized by significant variation across and within lineages. We combine results from our platform with genomic features to identify parameters that predict radiation sensitivity. We identify somatic copy number alterations, gene mutations and the basal expression of individual genes and gene sets that correlate with the radiation survival, revealing new insights into the genetic basis of tumour cellular response to DNA damage. These results demonstrate the diversity of tumour cellular response to ionizing radiation and establish multiple lines of evidence that new genetic features regulating cellular response after DNA damage can be identified. PMID:27109210

  1. A genetic basis for the variation in the vulnerability of cancer to DNA damage.

    PubMed

    Yard, Brian D; Adams, Drew J; Chie, Eui Kyu; Tamayo, Pablo; Battaglia, Jessica S; Gopal, Priyanka; Rogacki, Kevin; Pearson, Bradley E; Phillips, James; Raymond, Daniel P; Pennell, Nathan A; Almeida, Francisco; Cheah, Jaime H; Clemons, Paul A; Shamji, Alykhan; Peacock, Craig D; Schreiber, Stuart L; Hammerman, Peter S; Abazeed, Mohamed E

    2016-01-01

    Radiotherapy is not currently informed by the genetic composition of an individual patient's tumour. To identify genetic features regulating survival after DNA damage, here we conduct large-scale profiling of cellular survival after exposure to radiation in a diverse collection of 533 genetically annotated human tumour cell lines. We show that sensitivity to radiation is characterized by significant variation across and within lineages. We combine results from our platform with genomic features to identify parameters that predict radiation sensitivity. We identify somatic copy number alterations, gene mutations and the basal expression of individual genes and gene sets that correlate with the radiation survival, revealing new insights into the genetic basis of tumour cellular response to DNA damage. These results demonstrate the diversity of tumour cellular response to ionizing radiation and establish multiple lines of evidence that new genetic features regulating cellular response after DNA damage can be identified. PMID:27109210

  2. Genetically-Based Olfactory Signatures Persist Despite Dietary Variation

    PubMed Central

    Kwak, Jae; Willse, Alan; Matsumura, Koichi; Curran Opiekun, Maryanne; Yi, Weiguang; Preti, George; Yamazaki, Kunio; Beauchamp, Gary K.

    2008-01-01

    Individual mice have a unique odor, or odortype, that facilitates individual recognition. Odortypes, like other phenotypes, can be influenced by genetic and environmental variation. The genetic influence derives in part from genes of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC). A major environmental influence is diet, which could obscure the genetic contribution to odortype. Because odortype stability is a prerequisite for individual recognition under normal behavioral conditions, we investigated whether MHC-determined urinary odortypes of inbred mice can be identified in the face of large diet-induced variation. Mice trained to discriminate urines from panels of mice that differed both in diet and MHC type found the diet odor more salient in generalization trials. Nevertheless, when mice were trained to discriminate mice with only MHC differences (but on the same diet), they recognized the MHC difference when tested with urines from mice on a different diet. This indicates that MHC odor profiles remain despite large dietary variation. Chemical analyses of urinary volatile organic compounds (VOCs) extracted by solid phase microextraction (SPME) and analyzed by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS) are consistent with this inference. Although diet influenced VOC variation more than MHC, with algorithmic training (supervised classification) MHC types could be accurately discriminated across different diets. Thus, although there are clear diet effects on urinary volatile profiles, they do not obscure MHC effects. PMID:18974891

  3. Genetic Regulation of Transcriptional Variation in Natural Arabidopsis thaliana Accessions

    PubMed Central

    Zan, Yanjun; Shen, Xia; Forsberg, Simon K. G.; Carlborg, Örjan

    2016-01-01

    An increased knowledge of the genetic regulation of expression in Arabidopsis thaliana is likely to provide important insights about the basis of the plant’s extensive phenotypic variation. Here, we reanalyzed two publicly available datasets with genome-wide data on genetic and transcript variation in large collections of natural A. thaliana accessions. Transcripts from more than half of all genes were detected in the leaves of all accessions, and from nearly all annotated genes in at least one accession. Thousands of genes had high transcript levels in some accessions, but no transcripts at all in others, and this pattern was correlated with the genome-wide genotype. In total, 2669 eQTL were mapped in the largest population, and 717 of them were replicated in the other population. A total of 646 cis-eQTL-regulated genes that lacked detectable transcripts in some accessions was found, and for 159 of these we identified one, or several, common structural variants in the populations that were shown to be likely contributors to the lack of detectable RNA transcripts for these genes. This study thus provides new insights into the overall genetic regulation of global gene expression diversity in the leaf of natural A. thaliana accessions. Further, it also shows that strong cis-acting polymorphisms, many of which are likely to be structural variations, make important contributions to the transcriptional variation in the worldwide A. thaliana population. PMID:27226169

  4. Genetic variation in biomass traits among 20 diverse rice varieties.

    PubMed

    Jahn, Courtney E; Mckay, John K; Mauleon, Ramil; Stephens, Janice; McNally, Kenneth L; Bush, Daniel R; Leung, Hei; Leach, Jan E

    2011-01-01

    Biofuels provide a promising route of producing energy while reducing reliance on petroleum. Developing sustainable liquid fuel production from cellulosic feedstock is a major challenge and will require significant breeding efforts to maximize plant biomass production. Our approach to elucidating genes and genetic pathways that can be targeted for improving biomass production is to exploit the combination of genomic tools and genetic diversity in rice (Oryza sativa). In this study, we analyzed a diverse set of 20 recently resequenced rice varieties for variation in biomass traits at several different developmental stages. The traits included plant size and architecture, aboveground biomass, and underlying physiological processes. We found significant genetic variation among the 20 lines in all morphological and physiological traits. Although heritability estimates were significant for all traits, heritabilities were higher in traits relating to plant size and architecture than for physiological traits. Trait variation was largely explained by variety and breeding history (advanced versus landrace) but not by varietal groupings (indica, japonica, and aus). In the context of cellulosic biofuels development, cell wall composition varied significantly among varieties. Surprisingly, photosynthetic rates among the varieties were inversely correlated with biomass accumulation. Examining these data in an evolutionary context reveals that rice varieties have achieved high biomass production via independent developmental and physiological pathways, suggesting that there are multiple targets for biomass improvement. Future efforts to identify loci and networks underlying this functional variation will facilitate the improvement of biomass traits in other grasses being developed as energy crops. PMID:21062890

  5. Genetic variation in the endangered Southwestern Willow Flycatcher

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Busch, Joseph; Miller, Mark P.; Paxton, E.H.; Sogge, M.K.; Keim, Paul

    2000-01-01

    The Southwestern Willow Flycatcher(Empidonax trailii extimus) is an endangered Neotropical migrant that breeds in isolated remnants of dense riparian habitat in the southwestern United States. We estimated genetic variation at 20 breedings sites of the Southwestern Willow Flycatcher(290 individuals) using 38 amplified fragment length polymorphisms(AFLPs). Our results suggest that considerable genetic diversity exists within the subspecies and within local breeding sites. Statistical analyses of genetic variation revealed only slight, although significant, differentiation among breeding sites( Mantel's r = 0.0705, P < 0.0005; 0 = 0.0816, 95% CI = 0.0608 to 0.1034; a??sr = 0.0458, P < 0.001). UPGMA cluster analysis of the AFLP markers indicates that extensive gene flow has occurred among breeding sites. No one site stood out as being genetically unique or isolated. Therefore the small level of genetic structure that we detected may not be biologically significant. Ongoing field studies are consistent with this conclusion. Of the banded birds that were resighted or recaptured in Arizona during the 1996 to 1998 breeding seasons, one-third moved between breeding sites and two-thirds were philopatric. Low differentiation maybe the result of historically high rangewide diversity followed by recent geographic isolation of breeding sites, although observational data indicate that gene flow is a current phenomenon. Our data suggest that breeding groups of E. t. extimus act as a metapopulation.

  6. Ecological genetics of range size variation in Boechera spp. (Brassicaceae).

    PubMed

    Lovell, John T; McKay, John K

    2015-11-01

    Many taxonomic groups contain both rare and widespread species, which indicates that range size can evolve quickly. Many studies have compared molecular genetic diversity, plasticity, or phenotypic traits between rare and widespread species; however, a suite of genetic attributes that unites rare species remains elusive. Here, using two rare and two widespread Boechera (Brassicaceae) species, we conduct a simultaneous comparison of quantitative trait diversity, genetic diversity, and population structure among species with highly divergent range sizes. Consistent with previous studies, we do not find strong associations between range size and within-population genetic diversity. In contrast, we find that both the degree of phenotypic plasticity and quantitative trait structure (Q ST) were positively correlated with range size. We also found higher F ST: Q ST ratios in rare species, indicative of either a greater response to stabilizing selection or a lack of additive genetic variation. While widespread species occupy more ecological and climactic space and have diverged at both traits and markers, rare species display constrained levels of population differentiation and phenotypic plasticity. Combined, our results provide evidence for a specialization-generalization trade-off across three orders of magnitude of range size variation in the ecological model genus, Boechera. PMID:26640674

  7. A joint history of the nature of genetic variation and the nature of schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Kendler, K S

    2015-02-01

    This essay traces the history of concepts of genetic variation and schizophrenia from Darwin and Mendel to the present. For Darwin, the important form of genetic variation for evolution is continuous in nature and small in effect. Biometricians led by Pearson agreed and developed statistical genetic approaches utilizing trait correlations in relatives. Mendel studied discontinuous traits and subsequent Mendelians, led by Bateson, assumed that important genetic variation was large in effect producing discontinuous phenotypes. Although biometricians studied 'insanity', schizophrenia genetics under Kraepelin and Rüdin utilized Mendelian approaches congruent with their anatomical-clinical disease model of dementia praecox. Fisher showed, assuming many genes of small effect, Mendelian and Biometrical models were consilient. Echoing prior conflicts, psychiatric genetics since then has utilized both biometrical models, largely in twins, and Mendelian models, based on advancing molecular techniques. In 1968, Gottesman proposed a polygenic model for schizophrenia based on a threshold version of Fisher's theory. Since then, rigorous studies of the schizophrenia spectrum suggest that genetic risk for schizophrenia is more likely continuous than categorical. The last 5 years has seen increasingly convincing evidence from genome-wide association study (GWAS) and sequencing that genetic risk for schizophrenia is largely polygenic, and congruent with Fisher's and Gottesman's models. The gap between biometrical and molecular Mendelian models for schizophrenia has largely closed. The efforts to ground a categorical biomedical model of schizophrenia in Mendelian genetics have failed. The genetic risk for schizophrenia is widely distributed in human populations so that we all carry some degree of risk. PMID:25134695

  8. Genetic variation in Pneumocystis carinii isolates from different geographic regions: implications for transmission.

    PubMed Central

    Beard, C. B.; Carter, J. L.; Keely, S. P.; Huang, L.; Pieniazek, N. J.; Moura, I. N.; Roberts, J. M.; Hightower, A. W.; Bens, M. S.; Freeman, A. R.; Lee, S.; Stringer, J. R.; Duchin, J. S.; del Rio, C.; Rimland, D.; Baughman, R. P.; Levy, D. A.; Dietz, V. J.; Simon, P.; Navin, T. R.

    2000-01-01

    To study transmission patterns of Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia (PCP) in persons with AIDS, we evaluated P. carinii isolates from patients in five U.S. cities for variation at two independent genetic loci, the mitochondrial large subunit rRNA and dihydropteroate synthase. Fourteen unique multilocus genotypes were observed in 191 isolates that were examined at both loci. Mixed infections, accounting for 17.8% of cases, were associated with primary PCP. Genotype frequency distribution patterns varied by patients' place of diagnosis but not by place of birth. Genetic variation at the two loci suggests three probable characteristics of transmission: that most cases of PCP do not result from infections acquired early in life, that infections are actively acquired from a relatively common source (humans or the environment), and that humans, while not necessarily involved in direct infection of other humans, are nevertheless important in the transmission cycle of P. carinii f. sp. hominis. PMID:10827116

  9. Mixture distributions in human genetics research.

    PubMed

    Schork, N J; Allison, D B; Thiel, B

    1996-06-01

    The use of mixture distributions in genetics research dates back to at least the late 1800s when Karl Pearson applied them in an analysis of crab morphometry. Pearson's use of normal mixture distributions to model the mixing of different species of crab (or 'families' of crab as he referred to them) within a defined geographic area motivated further use of mixture distributions in genetics research settings, and ultimately led to their development and recognition as intuitive modelling devices for the effects of underlying genes on quantitative phenotypic (i.e. trait) expression. In addition, mixture distributions are now used routinely to model or accommodate the genetic heterogeneity thought to underlie many human diseases. Specific applications of mixture distribution models in contemporary human genetics research are, in fact, too numerous to count. Despite this long, consistent and arguably illustrious history of use, little mention of mixture distributions in genetics research is made in many recent reviews on mixture models. This review attempts to rectify this by providing insight into the role that mixture distributions play in contemporary human genetics research. Tables providing examples from the literature that describe applications of mixture models in human genetics research are offered as a way of acquainting the interested reader with relevant studies. In addition, some of the more problematic aspects of the use of mixture models in genetics research are outlined and addressed. PMID:8817796

  10. Recommendations for Genetic Variation Data Capture in Developing Countries to Ensure a Comprehensive Worldwide Data Collection

    PubMed Central

    Patrinos, George P; Al Aama, Jumana; Al Aqeel, Aida; Al-Mulla, Fahd; Borg, Joseph; Devereux, Andrew; Felice, Alex E; Macrae, Finlay; Marafie, Makia J; Petersen, Michael B; Qi, Ming; Ramesar, Rajkumar S; Zlotogora, Joel; Cotton, Richard GH

    2011-01-01

    Developing countries have significantly contributed to the elucidation of the genetic basis of both common and rare disorders, providing an invaluable resource of cases due to large family sizes, consanguinity, and potential founder effects. Moreover, the recognized depth of genomic variation in indigenous African populations, reflecting the ancient origins of humanity on the African continent, and the effect of selection pressures on the genome, will be valuable in understanding the range of both pathological and nonpathological variations. The involvement of these populations in accurately documenting the extant genetic heterogeneity is more than essential. Developing nations are regarded as key contributors to the Human Variome Project (HVP; http://www.humanvariomeproject.org), a major effort to systematically collect mutations that contribute to or cause human disease and create a cyber infrastructure to tie databases together. However, biomedical research has not been the primary focus in these countries even though such activities are likely to produce economic and health benefits for all. Here, we propose several recommendations and guidelines to facilitate participation of developing countries in genetic variation data documentation, ensuring an accurate and comprehensive worldwide data collection. We also summarize a few well-coordinated genetic data collection initiatives that would serve as paradigms for similar projects. Hum Mutat 31:1–8, 2010. © 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc. PMID:21089065

  11. Interpretation of patterns of genetic variation in endemic plant species of oceanic islands

    PubMed Central

    Stuessy, Tod F; Takayama, Koji; López-Sepúlveda, Patricio; Crawford, Daniel J

    2014-01-01

    Oceanic islands offer special opportunities for understanding the patterns and processes of evolution. The availability of molecular markers in recent decades has enhanced these opportunities, facilitating the use of population genetics to reveal divergence and speciation in island systems. A common pattern seen in taxa on oceanic islands is a decreased level of genetic variation within and among populations, and the founder effect has often been invoked to explain this observation. Founder effects have a major impact on immigrant populations, but, over millions of years, the original genetic signature will normally be erased as a result of mutation, recombination, drift and selection. Therefore, the types and degrees of genetic modifications that occur must often be caused by other factors, which should be considered when explaining the patterns of genetic variation. The age of the island is extremely important because oceanic islands subside on their submarine plates over time. Erosion caused by wind, rain and wave action combine to grind down soft volcanic substrates. These geomorphological events can have a dramatic impact on population number and size, and hence levels of genetic diversity. The mode of speciation is also of significance. With anagenesis, genetic variation accumulates through time, whereas, with cladogenenesis, the gene pool splits into populations of adaptively radiating species. Breeding systems, population sizes and generation times are also important, as is hybridization between closely related taxa. Human disturbance has affected plant population number and size through the harvesting of forests and the introduction of invasive plants and animals. Therefore, the explanation of the observed levels of genetic variation in species of oceanic islands requires the consideration of many interconnected physical, biological and anthropomorphic factors. PMID:26074627

  12. Genetic variation in tsetse flies and implications for trypanosomiasis.

    PubMed

    Gooding, R H

    1992-03-01

    The role of tsetse flies in the transmission of trypanosomes has been known for nearly 100 years, their economic and public health impact justifying much of the research. About 20 years ago, no genetic variants of tsetses were known but the discovery of six visible mutants and the application o f protein electrophoretic techniques have changed the situation. During the intervening years many techniques have been developed to study the biology of the approximately 30 known species and subspecies of Glossina. Here, Ron Gooding summarizes recent developments in the estimation o f genetic variation in tsetse populations and speculates on the implications of this variation to population structure, vectorial capacity and disease control strategies. PMID:15463582

  13. Caries: Review of Human Genetics Research

    PubMed Central

    Vieira, Alexandre R.; Modesto, Adriana; Marazita, Mary L.

    2014-01-01

    The NIH Consensus Development Program released a statement in 2001 (NIH Consensus Statement, 2001) and listed six major clinical caries research directions. One of these directions was the need for genetic studies to identify genes and genetic markers of diagnostic, prognostic, and therapeutic value. This last decade has seen a steep increase in studies investigating the presence of genetic factors influencing individual susceptibility to caries. This review revisits recent caries human genetic studies and provides a perspective for future studies in order to fulfill their promise of revolutionizing our understanding of and the standard of care for the most prevalent bacteria-mediated non-contagious disease in the world. PMID:24853115

  14. Genetic Variation of Echinococcus canadensis (G7) in Mexico

    PubMed Central

    Rodriguez-Prado, Ulises; Jimenez-Gonzalez, Diego Emiliano; Avila, Guillermina; Gonzalez, Armando E.; Martinez-Flores, Williams Arony; Mondragon de la Peña, Carmen; Hernandez-Castro, Rigoberto; Romero-Valdovinos, Mirza; Flisser, Ana; Martinez-Hernandez, Fernando; Maravilla, Pablo; Martinez-Maya, Jose Juan

    2014-01-01

    We evaluated the genetic variation of Echinococcus G7 strain in larval and adult stages using a fragment of the mitochondrial cox1 gen. Viscera of pigs, bovines, and sheep and fecal samples of dogs were inspected for cystic and canine echinococcosis, respectively; only pigs had hydatid cysts. Bayesian inferences grouped the sequences in an E. canadensis G7 cluster, suggesting that, in Mexico, this strain might be mainly present. Additionally, the population genetic and network analysis showed that E. canadensis in Mexico is very diverse and has probably been introduced several times from different sources. Finally, a scarce genetic differentiation between G6 (camel strain) and G7 (pig strain) populations was identified. PMID:25266350

  15. Genetic variation in the vulnerable and endemic Monkey Puzzle tree, detected using RAPDs.

    PubMed

    Bekessy, Sarah A; Allnutt, T R; Premoli, A C; Lara, A; Ennos, R A; Burgman, M A; Cortes, M; Newton, A C

    2002-04-01

    Araucaria araucana (Monkey Puzzle), a southern South American tree species of exceptional cultural and economic importance, is of conservation concern owing to extensive historical clearance and current human pressures. Random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) markers were used to characterise genetic heterogeneity within and among 13 populations of this species from throughout its natural range. Extensive genetic variability was detected and partitioned by analysis of molecular variance, with the majority of variation existing within populations (87.2%), but significant differentiation was recorded among populations (12.8%). Estimates of Shannon's genetic diversity and percent polymorphism were relatively high for all populations and provide no evidence for a major reduction in genetic diversity from historical events, such as glaciation. All pairwise genetic distance values derived from analysis of molecular variance (Phi(ST)) were significant when individual pairs of populations were compared. Although populations are geographically divided into Chilean Coastal, Chilean Andes and Argentinean regions, this grouping explained only 1.77% of the total variation. Within Andean groups there was evidence of a trend of genetic distance with increasing latitude, and clustering of populations across the Andes, suggesting postglacial migration routes from multiple refugia. Implications of these results for the conservation and use of the genetic resource of this species are discussed. PMID:11920130

  16. Comparing G: multivariate analysis of genetic variation in multiple populations.

    PubMed

    Aguirre, J D; Hine, E; McGuigan, K; Blows, M W

    2014-01-01

    The additive genetic variance-covariance matrix (G) summarizes the multivariate genetic relationships among a set of traits. The geometry of G describes the distribution of multivariate genetic variance, and generates genetic constraints that bias the direction of evolution. Determining if and how the multivariate genetic variance evolves has been limited by a number of analytical challenges in comparing G-matrices. Current methods for the comparison of G typically share several drawbacks: metrics that lack a direct relationship to evolutionary theory, the inability to be applied in conjunction with complex experimental designs, difficulties with determining statistical confidence in inferred differences and an inherently pair-wise focus. Here, we present a cohesive and general analytical framework for the comparative analysis of G that addresses these issues, and that incorporates and extends current methods with a strong geometrical basis. We describe the application of random skewers, common subspace analysis, the 4th-order genetic covariance tensor and the decomposition of the multivariate breeders equation, all within a Bayesian framework. We illustrate these methods using data from an artificial selection experiment on eight traits in Drosophila serrata, where a multi-generational pedigree was available to estimate G in each of six populations. One method, the tensor, elegantly captures all of the variation in genetic variance among populations, and allows the identification of the trait combinations that differ most in genetic variance. The tensor approach is likely to be the most generally applicable method to the comparison of G-matrices from any sampling or experimental design. PMID:23486079

  17. The effect of epistasis on sexually antagonistic genetic variation

    PubMed Central

    Arnqvist, Göran; Vellnow, Nikolas; Rowe, Locke

    2014-01-01

    There is increasing evidence of segregating sexually antagonistic (SA) genetic variation for fitness in laboratory and wild populations, yet the conditions for the maintenance of such variation can be restrictive. Epistatic interactions between genes can contribute to the maintenance of genetic variance in fitness and we suggest that epistasis between SA genes should be pervasive. Here, we explore its effect on SA genetic variation in fitness using a two locus model with negative epistasis. Our results demonstrate that epistasis often increases the parameter space showing polymorphism for SA loci. This is because selection in one locus is affected by allele frequencies at the other, which can act to balance net selection in males and females. Increased linkage between SA loci had more marginal effects. We also show that under some conditions, large portions of the parameter space evolve to a state where male benefit alleles are fixed at one locus and female benefit alleles at the other. This novel effect of epistasis on SA loci, which we term the ‘equity effect’, may have important effects on population differentiation and may contribute to speciation. More generally, these results support the suggestion that epistasis contributes to population divergence. PMID:24870040

  18. Implications of the apportionment of human genetic diversity for the apportionment of human phenotypic diversity

    PubMed Central

    Edge, Michael D.; Rosenberg, Noah A.

    2015-01-01

    Researchers in many fields have considered the meaning of two results about genetic variation for concepts of “race.” First, at most genetic loci, apportionments of human genetic diversity find that worldwide populations are genetically similar. Second, when multiple genetic loci are examined, it is possible to distinguish people with ancestry from different geographical regions. These two results raise an important question about human phenotypic diversity: To what extent do populations typically differ on phenotypes determined by multiple genetic loci? It might be expected that such phenotypes follow the pattern of similarity observed at individual loci. Alternatively, because they have a multilocus genetic architecture, they might follow the pattern of greater differentiation suggested by multilocus ancestry inference. To address the question, we extend a well-known classification model of Edwards (2003) by adding a selectively neutral quantitative trait. Using the extended model, we show, in line with previous work in quantitative genetics, that regardless of how many genetic loci influence the trait, one neutral trait is approximately as informative about ancestry as a single genetic locus. The results support the relevance of single-locus genetic-diversity partitioning for predictions about phenotypic diversity. PMID:25677859

  19. Genomic exploitation of genetic variation for crop improvement

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Crop plants produce food, fiber, and fuel that are essential to human civilization and mainstays of economic prosperity. Our society continues to cultivate and improve the crop plants for better quality and productivity with sustainable environments. The process of crop genetic improvement has bee...

  20. The genetics of neuroticism and human values

    PubMed Central

    Lancaster, Thomas M.; Maio, Gregory R.; Linden, David E. J.

    2016-01-01

    Human values and personality have been shown to share genetic variance in twin studies. However, there is a lack of evidence about the genetic components of this association. This study examined the interplay between genes, values and personality in the case of neuroticism, because polygenic scores were available for this personality trait. First, we replicated prior evidence of a positive association between the polygenic neuroticism score (PNS) and neuroticism. Second, we found that the PNS was significantly associated with the whole human value space in a sinusoidal waveform that was consistent with Schwartz's circular model of human values. These results suggest that it is useful to consider human values in the analyses of genetic contributions to personality traits. They also pave the way for an investigation of the biological mechanisms contributing to human value orientations. PMID:26915771

  1. Different differences: The use of ‘genetic ancestry’ versus race in biomedical human genetic research

    PubMed Central

    Fujimura, Joan H.; Rajagopalan, Ramya

    2011-01-01

    This article presents findings from our ethnographic research on biomedical scientists’ studies of human genetic variation and common complex disease. We examine the socio-material work involved in genome-wide association studies (GWAS) and discuss whether, how, and when notions of race and ethnicity are or are not used. We analyze how researchers produce simultaneously different kinds of populations and population differences. Although many geneticists use race in their analyses, we find some who have invented a statistical genetics method and associated software that they use specifically to avoid using categories of race in their genetics analysis. Their method allows them to operationalize their concept of ‘genetic ancestry’ without resorting to notions of race and ethnicity. We focus on the construction and implementation of the software’s algorithms, and discuss the consequences and implications of the software technology for debates and policies around the use of race in genetics research. We also demonstrate that the production and use of their method involves a dynamic and fluid assemblage of actors in various disciplines responding to disciplinary and sociopolitical contexts and concerns. This assemblage also includes particular discourses on human history and geography as they become entangled with research on genetic markers and disease. We introduce the concept of ‘genome geography’, to analyze how some researchers studying human genetic variation ‘locate’ stretches of DNA in different places and times. The concept of genetic ancestry and the practice of genome geography rely on old discourses, but they also incorporate new technologies, infrastructures, and political and scientific commitments. Some of these new technologies provide opportunities to change some of our institutional and cultural forms and frames around notions of difference and similarity. Neverthless, we also highlight the slipperiness of genome geography and the

  2. Human genetics. The genetics of Mexico recapitulates Native American substructure and affects biomedical traits.

    PubMed

    Moreno-Estrada, Andrés; Gignoux, Christopher R; Fernández-López, Juan Carlos; Zakharia, Fouad; Sikora, Martin; Contreras, Alejandra V; Acuña-Alonzo, Victor; Sandoval, Karla; Eng, Celeste; Romero-Hidalgo, Sandra; Ortiz-Tello, Patricia; Robles, Victoria; Kenny, Eimear E; Nuño-Arana, Ismael; Barquera-Lozano, Rodrigo; Macín-Pérez, Gastón; Granados-Arriola, Julio; Huntsman, Scott; Galanter, Joshua M; Via, Marc; Ford, Jean G; Chapela, Rocío; Rodriguez-Cintron, William; Rodríguez-Santana, Jose R; Romieu, Isabelle; Sienra-Monge, Juan José; del Rio Navarro, Blanca; London, Stephanie J; Ruiz-Linares, Andrés; Garcia-Herrera, Rodrigo; Estrada, Karol; Hidalgo-Miranda, Alfredo; Jimenez-Sanchez, Gerardo; Carnevale, Alessandra; Soberón, Xavier; Canizales-Quinteros, Samuel; Rangel-Villalobos, Héctor; Silva-Zolezzi, Irma; Burchard, Esteban Gonzalez; Bustamante, Carlos D

    2014-06-13

    Mexico harbors great cultural and ethnic diversity, yet fine-scale patterns of human genome-wide variation from this region remain largely uncharacterized. We studied genomic variation within Mexico from over 1000 individuals representing 20 indigenous and 11 mestizo populations. We found striking genetic stratification among indigenous populations within Mexico at varying degrees of geographic isolation. Some groups were as differentiated as Europeans are from East Asians. Pre-Columbian genetic substructure is recapitulated in the indigenous ancestry of admixed mestizo individuals across the country. Furthermore, two independently phenotyped cohorts of Mexicans and Mexican Americans showed a significant association between subcontinental ancestry and lung function. Thus, accounting for fine-scale ancestry patterns is critical for medical and population genetic studies within Mexico, in Mexican-descent populations, and likely in many other populations worldwide. PMID:24926019

  3. Genetically Engineered Pig Models for Human Diseases

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  4. Population amalgamation and genetic variation: observations on artificially agglomerated tribal populations of Central and South America.

    PubMed

    Chakraborty, R; Smouse, P E; Neel, J V

    1988-11-01

    The interpretation of data on genetic variation with regard to the relative roles of different evolutionary factors that produce and maintain genetic variation depends critically on our assumptions concerning effective population size and the level of migration between neighboring populations. In humans, recent population growth and movements of specific ethnic groups across wide geographic areas mean that any theory based on assumptions of constant population size and absence of substructure is generally untenable. We examine the effects of population subdivision on the pattern of protein genetic variation in a total sample drawn from an artificial agglomerate of 12 tribal populations of Central and South America, analyzing the pooled sample as though it were a single population. Several striking findings emerge. (1) Mean heterozygosity is not sensitive to agglomeration, but the number of different alleles (allele count) is inflated, relative to neutral mutation/drift/equilibrium expectation. (2) The inflation is most serious for rare alleles, especially those which originally occurred as tribally restricted "private" polymorphisms. (3) The degree of inflation is an increasing function of both the number of populations encompassed by the sample and of the genetic divergence among them. (4) Treating an agglomerated population as though it were a panmictic unit of long standing can lead to serious biases in estimates of mutation rates, selection pressures, and effective population sizes. Current DNA studies indicate the presence of numerous genetic variants in human populations. The findings and conclusions of this paper are all fully applicable to the study of genetic variation at the DNA level as well. PMID:3189334

  5. Genetic Diversity and Human Equality.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dobzhansky, Theodosius

    The idea of equality often, if not frequently, bogs down in confusion and apparent contradictions; equality is confused with identity, and diversity with inequality. It would seem that the easiest way to discredit the idea of equality is to show that people are innately, genetically, and, therefore, irremediably diverse and unlike. The snare is,…

  6. Genetic variation in insulin-induced kinase signaling

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Isabel Xiaorong; Ramrattan, Girish; Cheung, Vivian G

    2015-01-01

    Individual differences in sensitivity to insulin contribute to disease susceptibility including diabetes and metabolic syndrome. Cellular responses to insulin are well studied. However, which steps in these response pathways differ across individuals remains largely unknown. Such knowledge is needed to guide more precise therapeutic interventions. Here, we studied insulin response and found extensive individual variation in the activation of key signaling factors, including ERK whose induction differs by more than 20-fold among our subjects. This variation in kinase activity is propagated to differences in downstream gene expression response to insulin. By genetic analysis, we identified cis-acting DNA variants that influence signaling response, which in turn affects downstream changes in gene expression and cellular phenotypes, such as protein translation and cell proliferation. These findings show that polymorphic differences in signal transduction contribute to individual variation in insulin response, and suggest kinase modulators as promising therapeutics for diseases characterized by insulin resistance. PMID:26202599

  7. Intraspecific variation in social organization by genetic variation, developmental plasticity, social flexibility or entirely extrinsic factors

    PubMed Central

    Schradin, Carsten

    2013-01-01

    Previously, it was widely believed that each species has a specific social organization, but we know now that many species show intraspecific variation in their social organization. Four different processes can lead to intraspecific variation in social organization: (i) genetic variation between individuals owing to local adaptation (between populations) or evolutionarily stable strategies within populations; (ii) developmental plasticity evolved in long-term (more than one generation) unpredictable and short-term (one generation) predictable environments, which is mediated by organizational physiological effects during early ontogeny; (iii) social flexibility evolved in highly unpredictable environments, which is mediated by activational physiological effects in adults; (iv) entirely extrinsic factors such as the death of a dominant breeder. Variation in social behaviour occurs between individuals in the case of genetic variation and developmental plasticity, but within individuals in the case of social flexibility. It is important to study intraspecific variation in social organization to understand the social systems of species because it reveals the mechanisms by which species can adapt to changing environments, offers a useful tool to study the ultimate and proximate causes of sociality, and is an interesting phenomenon by itself that needs scientific explanation. PMID:23569294

  8. Genetic variation in personality traits explains genetic overlap between borderline personality features and substance use disorders

    PubMed Central

    Few, Lauren R.; Grant, Julia D; Trull, Timothy J.; Statham, Dixie J.; Martin, Nicholas G.; Lynskey, Michael T.; Agrawal, Arpana

    2014-01-01

    Aims To examine the genetic overlap between borderline personality features (BPF) and substance use disorders (SUDs) and the extent to which variation in personality traits contributes to this covariance. Design Genetic structural equation modelling was used to partition the variance in and covariance between personality traits, BPF, and SUDs into additive genetic, shared, and individual-specific environmental factors. Setting All participants were registered with the Australian Twin Registry. Participants A total of 3,127 Australian adult twins participated in the study. Measurements Diagnoses of DSM-IV alcohol and cannabis abuse/dependence (AAD; CAD), and nicotine dependence (ND) were derived via computer-assisted telephone interview. BPF and five-factor model personality traits were derived via self-report questionnaires. Findings Genetic factors were responsible for 49% (95%CI: 42%–55%) of the variance in BPF, 38–42% (95%CI range: 32%–49%) for personality traits and 47% (95%CI: 17%–77%), 54% (95%CI: 43%–64%), and 78% (67%–86%) for ND, AAD and CAD, respectively. Genetic and individual-specific environmental correlations between BPF and SUDs ranged from .33–.56 (95%CI range: .19–.74) and .19–.32 (95%CI range: .06–.43), respectively. Overall, there was substantial support for genetic influences that were specific to AAD, ND and CAD (31%–69%). Finally, genetic variation in personality traits was responsible for 11% (Extraversion for CAD) to 59% (Neuroticism for AAD) of the correlation between BPF and SUDs. Conclusions Both genetic and individual-specific environmental factors contribute to comorbidity between borderline personality features and substance use disorders. A substantial proportion of this comorbidity can be attributed to variation in normal personality traits, particularly Neuroticism. PMID:25041562

  9. Perspectives on the use of landscape genetics to detect genetic adaptive variation in the field.

    PubMed

    Manel, Stéphanie; Joost, Stéphane; Epperson, Bryan K; Holderegger, Rolf; Storfer, Andrew; Rosenberg, Michael S; Scribner, Kim T; Bonin, Aurélie; Fortin, Marie-Josée

    2010-09-01

    Understanding the genetic basis of species adaptation in the context of global change poses one of the greatest challenges of this century. Although we have begun to understand the molecular basis of adaptation in those species for which whole genome sequences are available, the molecular basis of adaptation is still poorly understood for most non-model species. In this paper, we outline major challenges and future research directions for correlating environmental factors with molecular markers to identify adaptive genetic variation, and point to research gaps in the application of landscape genetics to real-world problems arising from global change, such as the ability of organisms to adapt over rapid time scales. High throughput sequencing generates vast quantities of molecular data to address the challenge of studying adaptive genetic variation in non-model species. Here, we suggest that improvements in the sampling design should consider spatial dependence among sampled individuals. Then, we describe available statistical approaches for integrating spatial dependence into landscape analyses of adaptive genetic variation. PMID:20723056

  10. Seasonal variation in human reproduction: environmental factors.

    PubMed

    Bronson, F H

    1995-06-01

    Almost all human populations exhibit seasonal variation in births, owing mostly to seasonal variation in the frequency of conception. This review focuses on the degree to which environmental factors like nutrition, temperature and photoperiod contribute to these seasonal patterns by acting directly on the reproductive axis. The reproductive strategy of humans is basically that of the apes: Humans have the capacity to reproduce continuously, albeit slowly, unless inhibited by environmental influences. Two, and perhaps three, environmental factors probably act routinely as seasonal inhibitors in some human populations. First, it seems likely that ovulation is regulated seasonally in populations experiencing seasonal variation in food availability. More specifically, it seems likely that inadequate food intake or the increased energy expenditure required to obtain food, or both, can delay menarche, suppress the frequency of ovulation in the nonlactating adult, and prolong lactational amenorrhea in these populations on a seasonal basis. This action is most easily seen in tropical subsistence societies where food availability often varies greatly owing to seasonal variation in rainfall; hence births in these populations often correlate with rainfall. Second, it seems likely that seasonally high temperatures suppress spermatogenesis enough to influence the incidence of fertilization in hotter latitudes, but possibly only in males wearing clothing that diminishes scrotal cooling. Since most of our knowledge about this phenomenon comes from temperate latitudes, the sensitivity of spermatogenesis in both human and nonhuman primates to heat in the tropics needs further study. It is quite possible that high temperatures suppress ovulation and early embryo survival seasonally in some of these same populations. Since we know less than desired about the effect of heat stress on ovulation and early pregnancy in nonhuman mammals, and nothing at all about it in humans or any of the

  11. Ancient genetic variation in one of the world's rarest seabirds.

    PubMed

    Lawrence, H A; Scofield, R P; Crockett, D E; Millar, C D; Lambert, D M

    2008-12-01

    The Chatham Island Taiko (Tchaik, Pterodroma magentae) is one of the world's rarest seabirds. In the past there were millions of breeding pairs of Taiko and it was the most abundant burrowing petrel on Chatham Island. The present population consists of just 120-150 birds, including only 8-15 breeding pairs. Surprisingly high genetic variation was revealed by DNA sequencing of almost every known adult Taiko (N=90). Given the massive population decline, genetic variation may have been even larger in the past. Therefore, we investigated past genetic diversity by sequencing regions of the mitochondrial cytochrome b gene in 44 ancient Taiko bones. We identified a total of 12 haplotypes in Taiko. Eight haplotypes were revealed in the ancient DNA: four were unique to the bones and four corresponded to those found in the modern Taiko population. Surprisingly, despite the critically endangered status of the Taiko, no significant reduction in mitochondrial DNA haplotype diversity was observed between ancient samples (N=44) and modern adult Taiko (N=90). The modern population may have however lost four haplotypes present in the ancient populations. PMID:19018271

  12. Genetic variation in domestic reindeer and wild caribou in Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cronin, M.; Renecker, L.; Pierson, B. J.; Patton, J.C.

    1995-01-01

    Reindeer were introduced into Alaska 100 years ago and have been maintained as semidomestic livestock. They have had contact with wild caribou herds, including deliberate cross-breeding and mixing in the wild. Reindeer have considerable potential as a domestic animal for meat or velvet antler production, and wild caribou are important to subsistence and sport hunters. Our objective was to quantify the genetic relationships of reindeer and caribou in Alaska. We identified allelic variation among five herds of wild caribou and three herds of reindeer with DNA sequencing and restriction enzymes for three loci: a DQA locus of the major histocompatibility complex (Rata-DQA1), k-casein and the D-loop of mitochondrial DNA. These loci are of interest because of their potential influence on domestic animal performance and the fitness of wild populations. There is considerable genetic variation in reindeer and caribou for all three loci, including five, three and six alleles for DQA, k-casein and D-loop respectively. Most alleles occur in both reindeer and caribou, which may be the result of recent common ancestry or genetic introgression in either direction. However, allele frequencies differ considerably between reindeer and caribou, which suggests that gene flow has been limited.

  13. Variation and signatures of selection on the human face.

    PubMed

    Guo, Jing; Tan, Jingze; Yang, Yajun; Zhou, Hang; Hu, Sile; Hashan, Agu; Bahaxar, Nurmamat; Xu, Shuhua; Weaver, Timothy D; Jin, Li; Stoneking, Mark; Tang, Kun

    2014-10-01

    There has been much debate about why humans throughout the world differ in facial form. Previous studies of human skull morphology found levels of among-population differentiation that were comparable to those of neutral genetic markers, suggesting that genetic drift (neutral processes) played an important role in influencing facial differentiation. However, variation in soft-tissue morphology has not been studied in detail. In this study, we analyzed high-resolution 3D images of soft-tissue facial form in four Eurasian populations: Han Chinese, Tibetans, Uyghur and Europeans. A novel method was used to establish a high-density alignment across all of the faces, allowing facial diversity to be examined at an unprecedented resolution. These data exhibit signatures of population structure and history. However, among-population differentiation was higher for soft-tissue facial form than for genome-wide genetic loci, and high-resolution analyses reveal that the nose, brow area and cheekbones exhibit particularly strong signals of differentiation (Qst estimates: 0.3-0.8) between Europeans and Han Chinese. Our results suggest that local adaptation and/or sexual selection have been important in shaping human soft-tissue facial morphology. PMID:25186351

  14. The dynamics of genetic and morphological variation on volcanic islands

    PubMed Central

    Gübitz, Thomas; Thorpe, Roger S; Malhotra, Anita

    2005-01-01

    Oceanic archipelagos of volcanic origin have been important in the study of evolution because they provide repeated natural experiments allowing rigorous tests of evolutionary hypotheses. Ongoing volcanism on these islands may, however, affect the evolutionary diversification of species. Analysis of population structure and phylogeographic patterns in island populations can provide insight into evolutionary dynamics on volcanic islands. We analysed genetic and morphological variation in the gecko Tarentola boettgeri on the island of Gran Canaria and compared it with Tarentola delalandii on Tenerife, a neighbouring volcanic island of similar age but distinctly different geological past. Intraspecific divergence of mitochondrial haplotypes indicates long-term persistence of Tarentola on each island, with a phylogeographic signal left by older volcanic events. More recent volcanic eruptions (approximately 0.2 million years ago on Tenerife, approximately 2.2 million years ago on Gran Canaria) have left a signature of population expansion in the population genetic structure, the strength of which depends on the time since the last major volcanic eruption on each island. While these stochastic events have left traces in morphological variation in Tenerife, in Gran Canaria geographical variation was solely associated with environmental variables. This suggests that historically caused patterns in morphology may be overwritten by natural selection within 2 million years. PMID:15870037

  15. Genetic variation and population structure in native Americans.

    PubMed

    Wang, Sijia; Lewis, Cecil M; Jakobsson, Mattias; Ramachandran, Sohini; Ray, Nicolas; Bedoya, Gabriel; Rojas, Winston; Parra, Maria V; Molina, Julio A; Gallo, Carla; Mazzotti, Guido; Poletti, Giovanni; Hill, Kim; Hurtado, Ana M; Labuda, Damian; Klitz, William; Barrantes, Ramiro; Bortolini, Maria Cátira; Salzano, Francisco M; Petzl-Erler, Maria Luiza; Tsuneto, Luiza T; Llop, Elena; Rothhammer, Francisco; Excoffier, Laurent; Feldman, Marcus W; Rosenberg, Noah A; Ruiz-Linares, Andrés

    2007-11-01

    We examined genetic diversity and population structure in the American landmass using 678 autosomal microsatellite markers genotyped in 422 individuals representing 24 Native American populations sampled from North, Central, and South America. These data were analyzed jointly with similar data available in 54 other indigenous populations worldwide, including an additional five Native American groups. The Native American populations have lower genetic diversity and greater differentiation than populations from other continental regions. We observe gradients both of decreasing genetic diversity as a function of geographic distance from the Bering Strait and of decreasing genetic similarity to Siberians--signals of the southward dispersal of human populations from the northwestern tip of the Americas. We also observe evidence of: (1) a higher level of diversity and lower level of population structure in western South America compared to eastern South America, (2) a relative lack of differentiation between Mesoamerican and Andean populations, (3) a scenario in which coastal routes were easier for migrating peoples to traverse in comparison with inland routes, and (4) a partial agreement on a local scale between genetic similarity and the linguistic classification of populations. These findings offer new insights into the process of population dispersal and differentiation during the peopling of the Americas. PMID:18039031

  16. Genetic Variation and Population Structure in Native Americans

    PubMed Central

    Ramachandran, Sohini; Ray, Nicolas; Bedoya, Gabriel; Rojas, Winston; Parra, Maria V; Molina, Julio A; Gallo, Carla; Mazzotti, Guido; Poletti, Giovanni; Hill, Kim; Hurtado, Ana M; Labuda, Damian; Klitz, William; Barrantes, Ramiro; Bortolini, Maria Cátira; Salzano, Francisco M; Petzl-Erler, Maria Luiza; Tsuneto, Luiza T; Llop, Elena; Rothhammer, Francisco; Excoffier, Laurent; Feldman, Marcus W; Rosenberg, Noah A; Ruiz-Linares, Andrés

    2007-01-01

    We examined genetic diversity and population structure in the American landmass using 678 autosomal microsatellite markers genotyped in 422 individuals representing 24 Native American populations sampled from North, Central, and South America. These data were analyzed jointly with similar data available in 54 other indigenous populations worldwide, including an additional five Native American groups. The Native American populations have lower genetic diversity and greater differentiation than populations from other continental regions. We observe gradients both of decreasing genetic diversity as a function of geographic distance from the Bering Strait and of decreasing genetic similarity to Siberians—signals of the southward dispersal of human populations from the northwestern tip of the Americas. We also observe evidence of: (1) a higher level of diversity and lower level of population structure in western South America compared to eastern South America, (2) a relative lack of differentiation between Mesoamerican and Andean populations, (3) a scenario in which coastal routes were easier for migrating peoples to traverse in comparison with inland routes, and (4) a partial agreement on a local scale between genetic similarity and the linguistic classification of populations. These findings offer new insights into the process of population dispersal and differentiation during the peopling of the Americas. PMID:18039031

  17. Human genetic variability and HIV treatment response.

    PubMed

    Haas, David W

    2006-07-01

    Access to potent antiretroviral medications greatly reduces morbidity and mortality due to HIV/AIDS, but drug toxicity limits treatment success in many individuals. The field of pharmacogenomics strives to understand the influence of human genetic variants in response to medications. Investigators have begun to identify associations among human genetic variants, predisposition to HIV drug toxicities, and likelihood of virologic response. These include associations among abacavir hypersensitivity reactions, HLA type, and hsp70-hom genotypes, and among CYP2B6 polymorphisms, efavirenz pharmacokinetics, and central nervous system symptoms. Pharmacogenomics also holds great promise to suggest novel targets for drug development. The discovery that a naturally occurring, nonfunctional variant of the HIV receptor gene CCR5 protected against HIV infection encouraged the development of CCR5 antagonists. Through continued translational and applied research, pharmacogenomics will ultimately benefit persons living with HIV worldwide by identifying new therapeutic targets and through individualized drug prescribing that is informed by human genetic testing. PMID:16608660

  18. Geographic variation and genetic structure in Spotted Owls

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Haig, Susan M.; Wagner, R.S.; Forsman, E.D.; Mullins, Thomas D.

    2001-01-01

    We examined genetic variation, population structure, and definition of conservation units in Spotted Owls (Strix occidentalis). Spotted Owls are mostly non-migratory, long-lived, socially monogamous birds that have decreased population viability due to their occupation of highly-fragmented late successional forests in western North America. To investigate potential effects of habitat fragmentation on population structure, we used random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) to examine genetic variation hierarchically among local breeding areas, subregional groups, regional groups, and subspecies via sampling of 21 breeding areas (276 individuals) among the three subspecies of Spotted Owls. Data from 11 variable bands suggest a significant relationship between geographic distance among local breeding groups and genetic distance (Mantel r = 0.53, P < 0.02) although multi-dimensional scaling of three significant axes did not identify significant grouping at any hierarchical level. Similarly, neighbor-joining clustering of Manhattan distances indicated geographic structure at all levels and identified Mexican Spotted Owls as a distinct clade. RAPD analyses did not clearly differentiate Northern Spotted Owls from California Spotted Owls. Among Northern Spotted Owls, estimates of population differentiation (FST) ranged from 0.27 among breeding areas to 0.11 among regions. Concordantly, within-group agreement values estimated via multi-response permutation procedures of Jaccarda??s distances ranged from 0.22 among local sites to 0.11 among regions. Pairwise comparisons of FST and geographic distance within regions suggested only the Klamath region was in equilibrium with respect to gene flow and genetic drift. Merging nuclear data with recent mitochondrial data provides support for designation of an Evolutionary Significant Unit for Mexican Spotted Owls and two overlapping Management Units for Northern and California Spotted Owls.

  19. Multilocus patterns of genetic variation across Cryptosporidium species suggest balancing selection at the gp60 locus.

    PubMed

    Abal-Fabeiro, J L; Maside, X; Bello, X; Llovo, J; Bartolomé, C

    2013-09-01

    Cryptosporidium is an apicomplexan protozoan that lives in most vertebrates, including humans. Its gp60 gene is functionally involved in its attachment to host cells, and its high level of genetic variation has made it the reference marker for sample typing in epidemiological studies. To understand the origin of such high diversity and to determine the extent to which this classification applies to the rest of the genome, we analysed the patterns of variation at gp60 and nine other nuclear loci in isolates of three Cryptosporidium species. Most loci showed low genetic polymorphism (πS <1%) and similar levels of between-species divergence. Contrastingly, gp60 exhibited very different characteristics: (i) it was nearly ten times more variable than the other loci; (ii) it displayed a significant excess of polymorphisms relative to between-species differences in a maximum-likelihood Hudson-Kreitman-Aguadé test; (iii) gp60 subtypes turned out to be much older than the species they were found in; and (iv) showed a significant excess of polymorphic variants shared across species from random expectations. These observations suggest that this locus evolves under balancing selection and specifically under negative frequency-dependent selection (FDS). Interestingly, genetic variation at the other loci clusters very well within the groups of isolates defined by gp60 subtypes, which may provide new tools to understand the genome-wide patterns of genetic variation of the parasite in the wild. These results suggest that gp60 plays an active and essential role in the life cycle of the parasite and that genetic variation at this locus might be essential for the parasite's long-term success. PMID:23915002

  20. Genetic variation of mini- and microsatellites and a clonal structure in Enterocytozoon bieneusi population in foxes and raccoon dogs and population differentiation of the parasite between fur animals and humans.

    PubMed

    Li, Wei; Wan, Qiang; Yu, Qinlei; Yang, Yuqi; Tao, Wei; Jiang, Yanxue; Xiao, Lihua

    2016-07-01

    Enterocytozoon bieneusi is an obligate intracellular protozoan parasite that infects a wide range of mammal hosts and birds. Previous genotypic surveys were limited to measure the polymorphisms at the ribosomal internal transcribed spacer (ITS) that evolved slowly. Data on population structure are available only on E. bieneusi isolates from primates. This study explored the genotypic and phylogenetic characteristics of four mini- and microsatellites and performed a population genetic analysis in 39 E. bieneusi isolates of potentially zoonotic ITS genotype D from farmed foxes and raccoon dogs in China. Sequence polymorphisms facilitated determination of six, two, four, and five genotypes at markers MS1, MS3, MS4, and MS7, respectively. Patterns of phylogeny revealed different levels of diversity within and among the genetic markers. Clear genotypic and phylogenetic divergences between E. bieneusi isolates of ITS genotype D from fur animals and humans were observed at individual markers. Complete linkage disequilibrium and very limited recombination in subsequent population genetic analysis supported a clonal structure for E. bieneusi population from fur animals (FID). Phylogenetic analysis, genetic network, and measures of F ST and gene flow demonstrated population differentiation of FID from two known human E. bieneusi populations HID (with a clonal structure) and HIA (with an epidemic structure). The data indicated an ideal resolving power of MLST compared to the previously widely used ITS genotyping and confirmed the clonal nature and population differentiation of E. bieneusi in various hosts. PMID:27095568

  1. The Genetic Basis of Natural Variation in Caenorhabditis elegans Telomere Length.

    PubMed

    Cook, Daniel E; Zdraljevic, Stefan; Tanny, Robyn E; Seo, Beomseok; Riccardi, David D; Noble, Luke M; Rockman, Matthew V; Alkema, Mark J; Braendle, Christian; Kammenga, Jan E; Wang, John; Kruglyak, Leonid; Félix, Marie-Anne; Lee, Junho; Andersen, Erik C

    2016-09-01

    Telomeres are involved in the maintenance of chromosomes and the prevention of genome instability. Despite this central importance, significant variation in telomere length has been observed in a variety of organisms. The genetic determinants of telomere-length variation and their effects on organismal fitness are largely unexplored. Here, we describe natural variation in telomere length across the Caenorhabditis elegans species. We identify a large-effect variant that contributes to differences in telomere length. The variant alters the conserved oligonucleotide/oligosaccharide-binding fold of protection of telomeres 2 (POT-2), a homolog of a human telomere-capping shelterin complex subunit. Mutations within this domain likely reduce the ability of POT-2 to bind telomeric DNA, thereby increasing telomere length. We find that telomere-length variation does not correlate with offspring production or longevity in C. elegans wild isolates, suggesting that naturally long telomeres play a limited role in modifying fitness phenotypes in C. elegans. PMID:27449056

  2. The Genetic Basis of Natural Variation in Caenorhabditis elegans Telomere Length

    PubMed Central

    Cook, Daniel E.; Zdraljevic, Stefan; Tanny, Robyn E.; Seo, Beomseok; Riccardi, David D.; Noble, Luke M.; Rockman, Matthew V.; Alkema, Mark J.; Braendle, Christian; Kammenga, Jan E.; Wang, John; Kruglyak, Leonid; Félix, Marie-Anne; Lee, Junho; Andersen, Erik C.

    2016-01-01

    Telomeres are involved in the maintenance of chromosomes and the prevention of genome instability. Despite this central importance, significant variation in telomere length has been observed in a variety of organisms. The genetic determinants of telomere-length variation and their effects on organismal fitness are largely unexplored. Here, we describe natural variation in telomere length across the Caenorhabditis elegans species. We identify a large-effect variant that contributes to differences in telomere length. The variant alters the conserved oligonucleotide/oligosaccharide-binding fold of protection of telomeres 2 (POT-2), a homolog of a human telomere-capping shelterin complex subunit. Mutations within this domain likely reduce the ability of POT-2 to bind telomeric DNA, thereby increasing telomere length. We find that telomere-length variation does not correlate with offspring production or longevity in C. elegans wild isolates, suggesting that naturally long telomeres play a limited role in modifying fitness phenotypes in C. elegans. PMID:27449056

  3. Genetic variation for total fitness in Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed Central

    Fowler, K; Semple, C; Barton, N H; Partridge, L

    1997-01-01

    We measured the heterozygous effects on net fitness of a sample of 12 wild-type third chromosomes in D. melanogaster. Effects on fitness were assessed by competing the wild-type chromosomes against balancer chromosomes, to prevent the production of recombinants. The measurements were carried out in the population cage environment in which the life history had been evolving, in an undisturbed population with overlapping generations, and replicated measurements were made on each chromosome to control for confounding effects such as mutation accumulation. We found significant variation among the wild type chromosomes in their additive genetic effect on net fitness. The system provides an opportunity to obtain an accurate estimate of the distribution of heterozygous effects on net fitness, the contribution of different fitness components including male mating success, and the role of intra-chromosomal epistasis in fitness variation. PMID:9061969

  4. Seasonal Variation in Human Gut Microbiome Composition

    PubMed Central

    Davenport, Emily R.; Mizrahi-Man, Orna; Michelini, Katelyn; Barreiro, Luis B.; Ober, Carole; Gilad, Yoav

    2014-01-01

    The composition of the human gut microbiome is influenced by many environmental factors. Diet is thought to be one of the most important determinants, though we have limited understanding of the extent to which dietary fluctuations alter variation in the gut microbiome between individuals. In this study, we examined variation in gut microbiome composition between winter and summer over the course of one year in 60 members of a founder population, the Hutterites. Because of their communal lifestyle, Hutterite diets are similar across individuals and remarkably stable throughout the year, with the exception that fresh produce is primarily served during the summer and autumn months. Our data indicate that despite overall gut microbiome stability within individuals over time, there are consistent and significant population-wide shifts in microbiome composition across seasons. We found seasonal differences in both (i) the abundance of particular taxa (false discovery rate <0.05), including highly abundant phyla Bacteroidetes and Firmicutes, and (ii) overall gut microbiome diversity (by Shannon diversity; P = 0.001). It is likely that the dietary fluctuations between seasons with respect to produce availability explain, at least in part, these differences in microbiome composition. For example, high levels of produce containing complex carbohydrates consumed during the summer months might explain increased abundance of Bacteroidetes, which contain complex carbohydrate digesters, and decreased levels of Actinobacteria, which have been negatively correlated to fiber content in food questionnaires. Our observations demonstrate the plastic nature of the human gut microbiome in response to variation in diet. PMID:24618913

  5. Evolutionary perspectives on human height variation.

    PubMed

    Stulp, Gert; Barrett, Louise

    2016-02-01

    Human height is a highly variable trait, both within and between populations, has a high heritability, and influences the manner in which people behave and are treated in society. Although we know much about human height, this information has rarely been brought together in a comprehensive, systematic fashion. Here, we present a synthetic review of the literature on human height from an explicit evolutionary perspective, addressing its phylogenetic history, development, and environmental and genetic influences on growth and stature. In addition to presenting evidence to suggest the past action of natural selection on human height, we also assess the evidence that natural and sexual selection continues to act on height in contemporary populations. Although there is clear evidence to suggest that selection acts on height, mainly through life-history processes but perhaps also directly, it is also apparent that methodological factors reduce the confidence with which such inferences can be drawn, and there remain surprising gaps in our knowledge. The inability to draw firm conclusions about the adaptiveness of such a highly visible and easily measured trait suggests we should show an appropriate degree of caution when dealing with other human traits in evolutionary perspective. PMID:25530478

  6. Quantitative Genetics Identifies Cryptic Genetic Variation Involved in the Paternal Regulation of Seed Development

    PubMed Central

    Pires, Nuno D.; Bemer, Marian; Müller, Lena M.; Baroux, Célia; Spillane, Charles; Grossniklaus, Ueli

    2016-01-01

    Embryonic development requires a correct balancing of maternal and paternal genetic information. This balance is mediated by genomic imprinting, an epigenetic mechanism that leads to parent-of-origin-dependent gene expression. The parental conflict (or kinship) theory proposes that imprinting can evolve due to a conflict between maternal and paternal alleles over resource allocation during seed development. One assumption of this theory is that paternal alleles can regulate seed growth; however, paternal effects on seed size are often very low or non-existent. We demonstrate that there is a pool of cryptic genetic variation in the paternal control of Arabidopsis thaliana seed development. Such cryptic variation can be exposed in seeds that maternally inherit a medea mutation, suggesting that MEA acts as a maternal buffer of paternal effects. Genetic mapping using recombinant inbred lines, and a novel method for the mapping of parent-of-origin effects using whole-genome sequencing of segregant bulks, indicate that there are at least six loci with small, paternal effects on seed development. Together, our analyses reveal the existence of a pool of hidden genetic variation on the paternal control of seed development that is likely shaped by parental conflict. PMID:26811909

  7. Quantitative Genetics Identifies Cryptic Genetic Variation Involved in the Paternal Regulation of Seed Development.

    PubMed

    Pires, Nuno D; Bemer, Marian; Müller, Lena M; Baroux, Célia; Spillane, Charles; Grossniklaus, Ueli

    2016-01-01

    Embryonic development requires a correct balancing of maternal and paternal genetic information. This balance is mediated by genomic imprinting, an epigenetic mechanism that leads to parent-of-origin-dependent gene expression. The parental conflict (or kinship) theory proposes that imprinting can evolve due to a conflict between maternal and paternal alleles over resource allocation during seed development. One assumption of this theory is that paternal alleles can regulate seed growth; however, paternal effects on seed size are often very low or non-existent. We demonstrate that there is a pool of cryptic genetic variation in the paternal control of Arabidopsis thaliana seed development. Such cryptic variation can be exposed in seeds that maternally inherit a medea mutation, suggesting that MEA acts as a maternal buffer of paternal effects. Genetic mapping using recombinant inbred lines, and a novel method for the mapping of parent-of-origin effects using whole-genome sequencing of segregant bulks, indicate that there are at least six loci with small, paternal effects on seed development. Together, our analyses reveal the existence of a pool of hidden genetic variation on the paternal control of seed development that is likely shaped by parental conflict. PMID:26811909

  8. Genetic aspects of human congenital diaphragmatic hernia

    PubMed Central

    Pober, BR

    2010-01-01

    Congenital diaphragmatic hernia (CDH) is a common major malformation affecting 1/3000–1/4000 births, which continues to be associated with significant perinatal mortality. Much current research is focused on elucidating the genetics and pathophysiology contributing to CDH to develop more effective therapies. The latest data suggest that many cases of CDH are genetically determined and also indicate that CDH is etiologically heterogeneous. The present review will provide a brief summary of diaphragm development and model organism work most relevant to human CDH and will primarily describe important human phenotypes associated with CDH and also provide recommendations for diagnostic evaluation of a fetus or infant with CDH. PMID:18510546

  9. Global Genetic Variations Predict Brain Response to Faces

    PubMed Central

    Dickie, Erin W.; Tahmasebi, Amir; French, Leon; Kovacevic, Natasa; Banaschewski, Tobias; Barker, Gareth J.; Bokde, Arun; Büchel, Christian; Conrod, Patricia; Flor, Herta; Garavan, Hugh; Gallinat, Juergen; Gowland, Penny; Heinz, Andreas; Ittermann, Bernd; Lawrence, Claire; Mann, Karl; Martinot, Jean-Luc; Nees, Frauke; Nichols, Thomas; Lathrop, Mark; Loth, Eva; Pausova, Zdenka; Rietschel, Marcela; Smolka, Michal N.; Ströhle, Andreas; Toro, Roberto; Schumann, Gunter; Paus, Tomáš

    2014-01-01

    Face expressions are a rich source of social signals. Here we estimated the proportion of phenotypic variance in the brain response to facial expressions explained by common genetic variance captured by ∼500,000 single nucleotide polymorphisms. Using genomic-relationship-matrix restricted maximum likelihood (GREML), we related this global genetic variance to that in the brain response to facial expressions, as assessed with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in a community-based sample of adolescents (n = 1,620). Brain response to facial expressions was measured in 25 regions constituting a face network, as defined previously. In 9 out of these 25 regions, common genetic variance explained a significant proportion of phenotypic variance (40–50%) in their response to ambiguous facial expressions; this was not the case for angry facial expressions. Across the network, the strength of the genotype-phenotype relationship varied as a function of the inter-individual variability in the number of functional connections possessed by a given region (R2 = 0.38, p<0.001). Furthermore, this variability showed an inverted U relationship with both the number of observed connections (R2 = 0.48, p<0.001) and the magnitude of brain response (R2 = 0.32, p<0.001). Thus, a significant proportion of the brain response to facial expressions is predicted by common genetic variance in a subset of regions constituting the face network. These regions show the highest inter-individual variability in the number of connections with other network nodes, suggesting that the genetic model captures variations across the adolescent brains in co-opting these regions into the face network. PMID:25122193

  10. Global genetic variations predict brain response to faces.

    PubMed

    Dickie, Erin W; Tahmasebi, Amir; French, Leon; Kovacevic, Natasa; Banaschewski, Tobias; Barker, Gareth J; Bokde, Arun; Büchel, Christian; Conrod, Patricia; Flor, Herta; Garavan, Hugh; Gallinat, Juergen; Gowland, Penny; Heinz, Andreas; Ittermann, Bernd; Lawrence, Claire; Mann, Karl; Martinot, Jean-Luc; Nees, Frauke; Nichols, Thomas; Lathrop, Mark; Loth, Eva; Pausova, Zdenka; Rietschel, Marcela; Smolka, Michal N; Ströhle, Andreas; Toro, Roberto; Schumann, Gunter; Paus, Tomáš

    2014-08-01

    Face expressions are a rich source of social signals. Here we estimated the proportion of phenotypic variance in the brain response to facial expressions explained by common genetic variance captured by ∼ 500,000 single nucleotide polymorphisms. Using genomic-relationship-matrix restricted maximum likelihood (GREML), we related this global genetic variance to that in the brain response to facial expressions, as assessed with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in a community-based sample of adolescents (n = 1,620). Brain response to facial expressions was measured in 25 regions constituting a face network, as defined previously. In 9 out of these 25 regions, common genetic variance explained a significant proportion of phenotypic variance (40-50%) in their response to ambiguous facial expressions; this was not the case for angry facial expressions. Across the network, the strength of the genotype-phenotype relationship varied as a function of the inter-individual variability in the number of functional connections possessed by a given region (R(2) = 0.38, p<0.001). Furthermore, this variability showed an inverted U relationship with both the number of observed connections (R2 = 0.48, p<0.001) and the magnitude of brain response (R(2) = 0.32, p<0.001). Thus, a significant proportion of the brain response to facial expressions is predicted by common genetic variance in a subset of regions constituting the face network. These regions show the highest inter-individual variability in the number of connections with other network nodes, suggesting that the genetic model captures variations across the adolescent brains in co-opting these regions into the face network. PMID:25122193

  11. Principles of genetic variations and molecular diseases: applications in hemophilia A.

    PubMed

    Lannoy, N; Hermans, C

    2016-08-01

    DNA structure alterations are the ultimate source of genetic variations. Without them, evolution would be impossible. While they are essential for DNA diversity, defects in DNA synthesis can lead to numerous genetic diseases. Due to increasingly innovative technologies, our knowledge of the human genome and genetic diseases has grown considerably over the last few years, allowing us to detect another class of variants affecting the chromosomal structure. DNA sequence can be altered in multiple ways: DNA sequence changes by substitution, deletion, or duplication of some nucleotides; chromosomal structure alterations by deletion, duplication, translocation, and inversion, ranging in size from kilobases to mega bases; changes in the cell's genome size. If the alteration is located within a gene and sufficiently deleterious, it can cause genetic disorders. Due to the F8 gene's high rate of new small mutations and its location at the tip of X chromosome, containing high repetitive sequences, a wide variety of genetic variants has been described as the cause of hemophilia A (HA). In addition to the F8 intron 22 repeat inversion, HA can also result from point mutations, other inversions, complex rearrangements, such as duplications or deletions, and transposon insertions causing phenotypes of variable severity characterized by complete or partial deficiency of circulating FVIII. This review aims to present the origins, mechanisms, and consequences of F8 alterations. A sound understanding of the multiple genetic mechanisms responsible for HA is essential to determine the appropriate strategy for molecular diagnosis and detected each type of genetic variant. PMID:27296059

  12. The influence of recombination on human genetic diversity.

    PubMed

    Spencer, Chris C A; Deloukas, Panos; Hunt, Sarah; Mullikin, Jim; Myers, Simon; Silverman, Bernard; Donnelly, Peter; Bentley, David; McVean, Gil

    2006-09-22

    In humans, the rate of recombination, as measured on the megabase scale, is positively associated with the level of genetic variation, as measured at the genic scale. Despite considerable debate, it is not clear whether these factors are causally linked or, if they are, whether this is driven by the repeated action of adaptive evolution or molecular processes such as double-strand break formation and mismatch repair. We introduce three innovations to the analysis of recombination and diversity: fine-scale genetic maps estimated from genotype experiments that identify recombination hotspots at the kilobase scale, analysis of an entire human chromosome, and the use of wavelet techniques to identify correlations acting at different scales. We show that recombination influences genetic diversity only at the level of recombination hotspots. Hotspots are also associated with local increases in GC content and the relative frequency of GC-increasing mutations but have no effect on substitution rates. Broad-scale association between recombination and diversity is explained through covariance of both factors with base composition. To our knowledge, these results are the first evidence of a direct and local influence of recombination hotspots on genetic variation and the fate of individual mutations. However, that hotspots have no influence on substitution rates suggests that they are too ephemeral on an evolutionary time scale to have a strong influence on broader scale patterns of base composition and long-term molecular evolution. PMID:17044736

  13. Integrative analysis of RNA, translation, and protein levels reveals distinct regulatory variation across humans

    PubMed Central

    Cenik, Can; Cenik, Elif Sarinay; Byeon, Gun W.; Grubert, Fabian; Candille, Sophie I.; Spacek, Damek; Alsallakh, Bilal; Tilgner, Hagen; Araya, Carlos L.; Tang, Hua; Ricci, Emiliano; Snyder, Michael P.

    2015-01-01

    Elucidating the consequences of genetic differences between humans is essential for understanding phenotypic diversity and personalized medicine. Although variation in RNA levels, transcription factor binding, and chromatin have been explored, little is known about global variation in translation and its genetic determinants. We used ribosome profiling, RNA sequencing, and mass spectrometry to perform an integrated analysis in lymphoblastoid cell lines from a diverse group of individuals. We find significant differences in RNA, translation, and protein levels suggesting diverse mechanisms of personalized gene expression control. Combined analysis of RNA expression and ribosome occupancy improves the identification of individual protein level differences. Finally, we identify genetic differences that specifically modulate ribosome occupancy—many of these differences lie close to start codons and upstream ORFs. Our results reveal a new level of gene expression variation among humans and indicate that genetic variants can cause changes in protein levels through effects on translation. PMID:26297486

  14. Genetic mapping of variation in spatial learning in the mouse.

    PubMed

    Steinberger, Daniela; Reynolds, David S; Ferris, Pushpindar; Lincoln, Rachael; Datta, Susmita; Stanley, Joanna; Paterson, Andrea; Dawson, Gerard R; Flint, Jonathan

    2003-03-15

    Inbred strains of mice are known to differ in their performance in the Morris water maze task, a test of spatial discrimination and place navigation in rodents, but the genetic basis of individual variation in spatial learning is unknown. We have mapped genetic effects that contribute to the difference between two strains, DBA/2 and C57BL6/J, using an F2 intercross and methods to detect quantitative trait loci (QTL). We found two QTL, one on chromosome 4 and one on chromosome 12, that influence behavior in the probe trial of the water maze (genome-wide significance p = 0.017 and 0.015, respectively). By including tests of avoidance conditioning and behavior in a novel environment, we show that the QTL on chromosomes 4 and 12 specifically influence variation in spatial learning. QTL that influence differences in fearful behavior (on chromosomes 1, 3, 7, 15, and 19) operate while mice are trained in the water maze apparatus. PMID:12657702

  15. Variation in the peacock's train shows a genetic component.

    PubMed

    Petrie, Marion; Cotgreave, Peter; Pike, Thomas W

    2009-01-01

    Female peafowl (Pavo cristatus) show a strong mating preference for males with elaborate trains. This, however, poses something of a paradox because intense directional selection should erode genetic variation in the males' trains, so that females will no longer benefit by discriminating among males on the basis of these traits. This situation is known as the 'lek paradox', and leads to the theoretical expectation of low heritability in the peacock's train. We used two independent breeding experiments, involving a total of 42 sires and 86 of their male offspring, to estimate the narrow sense heritabilities of male ornaments and other morphometric traits. Contrary to expectation, we found significant levels of heritability in a trait known to be used by females during mate choice (train length), while no significant heritabilities were evident for other, non-fitness related morphological traits (tarsus length, body weight or spur length). This study adds to the building body of evidence that high levels of additive genetic variance can exist in secondary sexual traits under directional selection, but further emphasizes the main problem of what maintains this variation. PMID:17922297

  16. From homothally to heterothally: Mating preferences and genetic variation within clones of the dinoflagellate Gymnodinium catenatum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Figueroa, Rosa Isabel; Rengefors, Karin; Bravo, Isabel; Bensch, Staffan

    2010-02-01

    The chain-forming dinoflagellate Gymnodinium catenatum Graham is responsible for outbreaks of paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP), a human health threat in coastal waters. Sexuality in this species is of great importance in its bloom dynamics, and has been shown to be very complex but lacks an explanation. For this reason, we tested if unreported homothallic behavior and rapid genetic changes may clarify the sexual system of this alga. To achieve this objective, 12 clonal strains collected from the Spanish coast were analyzed for the presence of sexual reproduction. Mating affinity results, self-compatibility studies, and genetic fingerprinting (amplified fragment length polymorphism, AFLP) analysis on clonal strains, showed three facts not previously described for this species: (i) That there is a continuous mating system within G. catenatum, with either self-compatible strains (homothallic), or strains that needed to be outcrossed (heterothallic), and with a range of differences in cyst production among the crosses. (ii) There was intraclonal genetic variation, i.e. genetic variation within an asexual lineage. Moreover, the variability among homothallic clones was smaller than among the heterothallic ones. (iii) Sibling strains (the two strains established by the germination of one cyst) increased their intra- and inter-sexual compatibility with time. To summarize, we have found that G. catenatum's sexual system is much more complex than previously described, including complex homothallic/heterothallic behaviors. Additionally, high rates of genetic variability may arise in clonal strains, although explanations for the mechanisms responsible are still lacking.

  17. The genetics of human skin disease.

    PubMed

    DeStefano, Gina M; Christiano, Angela M

    2014-10-01

    The skin is composed of a variety of cell types expressing specific molecules and possessing different properties that facilitate the complex interactions and intercellular communication essential for maintaining the structural integrity of the skin. Importantly, a single mutation in one of these molecules can disrupt the entire organization and function of these essential networks, leading to cell separation, blistering, and other striking phenotypes observed in inherited skin diseases. Over the past several decades, the genetic basis of many monogenic skin diseases has been elucidated using classical genetic techniques. Importantly, the findings from these studies has shed light onto the many classes of molecules and essential genetic as well as molecular interactions that lend the skin its rigid, yet flexible properties. With the advent of the human genome project, next-generation sequencing techniques, as well as several other recently developed methods, tremendous progress has been made in dissecting the genetic architecture of complex, non-Mendelian skin diseases. PMID:25274756

  18. Genetic variation in regulatory DNA elements: the case of OCA2 transcriptional regulation.

    PubMed

    Visser, Mijke; Kayser, Manfred; Grosveld, Frank; Palstra, Robert-Jan

    2014-03-01

    Mutations within the OCA2 gene or the complete absence of the OCA2 protein leads to oculocutaneous albinism type 2. The OCA2 protein plays a central role in melanosome biogenesis, and it is a strong determinant of the eumelanin content in melanocytes. Transcript levels of the OCA2 gene are strongly correlated with pigmentation intensities. Recent studies demonstrated that the transcriptional level of OCA2 is to a large extent determined by the noncoding SNP rs12913832 located 21.5 kb upstream of the OCA2 gene promoter. In this review, we discuss current hypotheses and the available data on the mechanism of OCA2 transcriptional regulation and how this is influenced by genetic variation. Finally, we will explore how future epigenetic studies can be used to advance our insight into the functional biology that connects genetic variation to human pigmentation. PMID:24387780

  19. Natural variation and genetic covariance in adult hippocampal neurogenesis

    SciTech Connect

    Kempermann, Gerd; Chesler, Elissa J; Lu, Lu; Williams, Robert; Gage, Fred

    2006-01-01

    Adult hippocampal neurogenesis is highly variable and heritable among laboratory strains of mice. Adult neurogenesis is also remarkably plastic and can be modulated by environment and activity. Here, we provide a systematic quantitative analysis of adult hippocampal neurogenesis in two large genetic reference panels of recombinant inbred strains (BXD and AXB?BXA, n ? 52 strains). We combined data on variation in neurogenesis with a new transcriptome database to extract a set of 190 genes with expression patterns that are also highly variable and that covary with rates of (i) cell proliferation, (ii) cell survival, or the numbers of surviving (iii) new neurons, and (iv) astrocytes. Expression of a subset of these neurogenesis-associated transcripts was controlled in cis across the BXD set. These self-modulating genes are particularly interesting candidates to control neurogenesis. Among these were musashi (Msi1h) and prominin1?CD133 (Prom1), both of which are linked to stem-cell maintenance and division. Twelve neurogenesis-associated transcripts had significant cis-acting quantitative trait loci, and, of these, six had plausible biological association with adult neurogenesis (Prom1, Ssbp2, Kcnq2, Ndufs2, Camk4, and Kcnj9). Only one cis- cting candidate was linked to both neurogenesis and gliogenesis, Rapgef6, a downstream target of ras signaling. The use of genetic reference panels coupled with phenotyping and global transcriptome profiling thus allowed insight into the complexity of the genetic control of adult neurogenesis.

  20. Evaluation of genetic variation among wild rice populations in Cambodia

    PubMed Central

    Orn, Chhourn; Shishido, Rieko; Akimoto, Masahiro; Ishikawa, Ryo; Htun, Than Myint; Nonomura, Ken-Ichi; Koide, Yohei; Sarom, Men; Vang, Seng; Sophany, Sakhan; Makara, Ouk; Ishii, Takashige

    2015-01-01

    A total of 448 samples in five natural populations of wild rice (Oryza rufipogon) were collected in Cambodia. They were examined using 12 SSR and two chloroplast markers to evaluate the degree of variation among populations and the genetic structure within populations. In the two annual populations, the number of plants with homozygous alleles at all 12 SSR loci were high (66.3% and 79.5%), suggesting that these plants propagate mainly through self-pollination. In the three perennial populations, no individuals had all homozygous genotypes, but redundant genotypes resulted from clonal propagation were observed. Percentages of the redundant genotypes were highly varied (3.6%, 29.2% and 86.0%). This may be due to the different stable levels of environmental conditions. As for chloroplast genome, most of the wild plants showed the same chloroplast types as most Indica-type cultivars have. However, plants with different chloroplast types were maintained, even in the same population. In tropical Asian countries, many wild rice populations were observed under similar ecological conditions examined in this study. Therefore, the present results concerning population structure will be important to further elucidate genetic features of wild rice, and will also give strong clues to utilize and conserve wild natural genetic resources. PMID:26719746

  1. Aneuploidy and Genetic Variation in the Arabidopsis thaliana Triploid Response

    PubMed Central

    Henry, Isabelle M.; Dilkes, Brian P.; Young, Kim; Watson, Brian; Wu, Helen; Comai, Luca

    2005-01-01

    Polyploidy, the inheritance of more than two genome copies per cell, has played a major role in the evolution of higher plants. Little is known about the transition from diploidy to polyploidy but in some species, triploids are thought to function as intermediates in this transition. In contrast, in other species triploidy is viewed as a block. We investigated the responses of Arabidopsis thaliana to triploidy. The role of genetic variability was tested by comparing triploids generated from crosses between Col-0, a diploid, and either a natural autotetraploid (Wa-1) or an induced tetraploid of Col-0. In this study, we demonstrate that triploids of A. thaliana are fertile, producing a swarm of different aneuploids. Propagation of the progeny of a triploid for a few generations resulted in diploid and tetraploid cohorts. This demonstrated that, in A. thaliana, triploids can readily form tetraploids and function as bridges between euploid types. Genetic analysis of recombinant inbred lines produced from a triploid identified a locus on chromosome I exhibiting allelic bias in the tetraploid lines but not in the diploid lines. Thus, genetic variation was subject to selection contingent on the final ploidy and possibly acting during the protracted aneuploid phase. PMID:15944363

  2. Genetic variation modifies risk for neurodegeneration based on biomarker status

    PubMed Central

    Hohman, Timothy J.; Koran, Mary Ellen I.; Thornton-Wells, Tricia A.

    2014-01-01

    Background: While a great deal of work has gone into understanding the relationship between Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) biomarkers, brain atrophy, and disease progression, less work has attempted to investigate how genetic variation modifies these relationships. The goal of this study was two-fold. First, we sought to identify high-risk vs. low-risk individuals based on their CSF tau and Aβ load and characterize these individuals with regard to brain atrophy in an AD-relevant region of interest. Next, we sought to identify genetic variants that modified the relationship between biomarker classification and neurodegeneration. Methods: Participants were categorized based on established cut-points for biomarker positivity. Mixed model regression was used to quantify longitudinal change in the left inferior lateral ventricle. Interaction analyses between single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and biomarker group status were performed using a genome wide association study (GWAS) approach. Correction for multiple comparisons was performed using the Bonferroni procedure. Results: One intergenic SNP (rs4866650) and one SNP within the SPTLC1 gene (rs7849530) modified the association between amyloid positivity and neurodegeneration. A transcript variant of WDR11-AS1 gene (rs12261764) modified the association between tau positivity and neurodegeneration. These effects were consistent across the two sub-datasets and explained approximately 3% of variance in ventricular dilation. One additional SNP (rs6887649) modified the association between amyloid positivity and baseline ventricular volume, but was not observed consistently across the sub-datasets. Conclusions: Genetic variation modifies the association between AD biomarkers and neurodegeneration. Genes that regulate the molecular response in the brain to oxidative stress may be particularly relevant to neural vulnerability to the damaging effects of amyloid-β. PMID:25140149

  3. HGDBMS: a human genetics database management system.

    PubMed

    Seuchter, S A; Skolnick, M H

    1988-10-01

    Human genetics research involves a large number of complex data sets naturally organized in hierarchical structures. Data collection is performed on different levels, e.g., the project level, pedigree level, individual level, and sample level. Different aspects of a study utilize different views of the data, requiring a flexible database management system (DBMS) which satisfies these different needs for data collection and retrieval. We describe HGDBMS, a comprehensive relational DBMS, implemented as an application of the GENISYS I DBMS, which allows embedding the hierarchical structure of pedigrees in a relational structure. The system's file structure is described in detail. Currently our Melanoma and Chromosome 17 map studies are managed with HGDBMS. Our initial experience demonstrates the value of a flexible system which supports the needs for data entry, update, storage, reporting, and analysis required during different phases of genetic research. Further developments will focus on the integration of HGDBMS with a human genetics expert system shell and analysis programs. PMID:3180747

  4. Climate variables explain neutral and adaptive variation within salmonid metapopulations: the importance of replication in landscape genetics.

    PubMed

    Hand, Brian K; Muhlfeld, Clint C; Wade, Alisa A; Kovach, Ryan P; Whited, Diane C; Narum, Shawn R; Matala, Andrew P; Ackerman, Michael W; Garner, Brittany A; Kimball, John S; Stanford, Jack A; Luikart, Gordon

    2016-02-01

    Understanding how environmental variation influences population genetic structure is important for conservation management because it can reveal how human stressors influence population connectivity, genetic diversity and persistence. We used riverscape genetics modelling to assess whether climatic and habitat variables were related to neutral and adaptive patterns of genetic differentiation (population-specific and pairwise FST ) within five metapopulations (79 populations, 4583 individuals) of steelhead trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) in the Columbia River Basin, USA. Using 151 putatively neutral and 29 candidate adaptive SNP loci, we found that climate-related variables (winter precipitation, summer maximum temperature, winter highest 5% flow events and summer mean flow) best explained neutral and adaptive patterns of genetic differentiation within metapopulations, suggesting that climatic variation likely influences both demography (neutral variation) and local adaptation (adaptive variation). However, we did not observe consistent relationships between climate variables and FST across all metapopulations, underscoring the need for replication when extrapolating results from one scale to another (e.g. basin-wide to the metapopulation scale). Sensitivity analysis (leave-one-population-out) revealed consistent relationships between climate variables and FST within three metapopulations; however, these patterns were not consistent in two metapopulations likely due to small sample sizes (N = 10). These results provide correlative evidence that climatic variation has shaped the genetic structure of steelhead populations and highlight the need for replication and sensitivity analyses in land and riverscape genetics. PMID:26677031

  5. Climate variables explain neutral and adaptive variation within salmonid metapopulations: The importance of replication in landscape genetics

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hand, Brian K; Muhlfeld, Clint C.; Wade, Alisa A.; Kovach, Ryan; Whited, Diane C.; Narum, Shawn R; Matala, Andrew P; Ackerman, Michael W.; Garner, B. A.; Kimball, John S; Stanford, Jack A.; Luikart, Gordon

    2016-01-01

    Understanding how environmental variation influences population genetic structure is important for conservation management because it can reveal how human stressors influence population connectivity, genetic diversity and persistence. We used riverscape genetics modelling to assess whether climatic and habitat variables were related to neutral and adaptive patterns of genetic differentiation (population-specific and pairwise FST) within five metapopulations (79 populations, 4583 individuals) of steelhead trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) in the Columbia River Basin, USA. Using 151 putatively neutral and 29 candidate adaptive SNP loci, we found that climate-related variables (winter precipitation, summer maximum temperature, winter highest 5% flow events and summer mean flow) best explained neutral and adaptive patterns of genetic differentiation within metapopulations, suggesting that climatic variation likely influences both demography (neutral variation) and local adaptation (adaptive variation). However, we did not observe consistent relationships between climate variables and FST across all metapopulations, underscoring the need for replication when extrapolating results from one scale to another (e.g. basin-wide to the metapopulation scale). Sensitivity analysis (leave-one-population-out) revealed consistent relationships between climate variables and FST within three metapopulations; however, these patterns were not consistent in two metapopulations likely due to small sample sizes (N = 10). These results provide correlative evidence that climatic variation has shaped the genetic structure of steelhead populations and highlight the need for replication and sensitivity analyses in land and riverscape genetics.

  6. Genetic variation, climate models and the ecological genetics of Larix occidentalis

    SciTech Connect

    Rehfeldt, G.E.

    1995-12-31

    Provenance tests of 138 populations of Larix occidentalis revealed genetic differentiation for eight variables describing growth, phenology, tolerance to spring frosts, effects of Meria laricis needle cast, and survival. Geographic variables accounted for as much as 34% of the variance among Rocky Mountain populations. Patterns of genetic variation were dominated by the effects of latitude and elevation, with populations from the north and from high elevations having the lowest growth potential, the least tolerance to the needle cast, and the lowest survival. However, the slope of the geographic clines was relatively flat. Populations in the same geographic area, for instance, need to be separated by about 500 m in elevation before genetic differentiation can be expected.

  7. Genetic variation in natural populations of Populus tremuloide

    SciTech Connect

    Cheliak, W.M.

    1980-01-01

    Vegetative reproduction results in a mosaic of clones throughout the extensive natural range of this species. An electrophoretic survey of 26 loci in 222 trees from seven natural populations in Alberta demonstrated great variability. Average observed population heterozygosity was 0.52 with an average of 2.3 alleles per locus; 84% of the loci were polymorphic. A model (for a finite population with neutral alleles) was developed to investigate the effects of partial vegetative reproduction on the amount of variation in a population. Results of the survey conformed to those predicted by the model for a population with a rate of sexual establishment greater than 1/N, where N is the population size. The model states that under these conditions, vegetative reproduction has no effect on the population. Therefore, the high level of observed variation is not an artifact of the mode of natural reproduction. These results support conclusions about high population variability based on phenotypic measurements and also suggest a genetic basis for this variation, rather than simply phenotypic plasticity.

  8. Can genetic differences explain vocal dialect variation in sperm whales, Physeter macrocephalus?

    PubMed

    Rendell, Luke; Mesnick, Sarah L; Dalebout, Merel L; Burtenshaw, Jessica; Whitehead, Hal

    2012-03-01

    Sperm whale social groups can be assigned to vocal clans based on their production of codas, short stereotyped patterns of clicks. It is currently unclear whether genetic variation could account for these behavioural differences. We studied mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) variation among sympatric vocal clans in the Pacific Ocean, using sequences extracted from sloughed skin samples. We sampled 194 individuals from 30 social groups belonging to one of three vocal clans. As in previous studies of sperm whales, mtDNA control region diversity was low (π = 0.003), with just 14 haplotypes present in our sample. Both hierarchical AMOVAs and partial Mantel tests showed that vocal clan was a more important factor in matrilineal population genetic structure than geography, even though our sampling spanned thousands of kilometres. The variance component attributed to vocal dialects (7.7%) was an order of magnitude higher than those previously reported in birds, while the variance component attributed to geographic area was negligible. Despite this, the two most common haplotypes were present in significant quantities in each clan, meaning that variation in the control region cannot account for behavioural variation between clans, and instead parallels the situation in humans where parent-offspring transmission of language variation has resulted in correlations with neutral genes. Our results also raise questions for the management of sperm whale populations, which has traditionally been based on dividing populations into geographic 'stocks', suggesting that culturally-defined vocal clans may be more appropriate management units. PMID:22015469

  9. Genetic Manipulation of Human Embryonic Stem Cells.

    PubMed

    Eiges, Rachel

    2016-01-01

    One of the great advantages of embryonic stem (ES) cells over other cell types is their accessibility to genetic manipulation. They can easily undergo genetic modifications while remaining pluripotent, and can be selectively propagated, allowing the clonal expansion of genetically altered cells in culture. Since the first isolation of ES cells in mice, many effective techniques have been developed for gene delivery and manipulation of ES cells. These include transfection, electroporation, and infection protocols, as well as different approaches for inserting, deleting, or changing the expression of genes. These methods proved to be extremely useful in mouse ES cells, for monitoring and directing differentiation, discovering unknown genes, and studying their function, and are now being extensively implemented in human ES cells (HESCs). This chapter describes the different approaches and methodologies that have been applied for the genetic manipulation of HESCs and their applications. Detailed protocols for generating clones of genetically modified HESCs by transfection, electroporation, and infection will be described, with special emphasis on the important technical details that are required for this purpose. All protocols are equally effective in human-induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells. PMID:25520283

  10. Human Genetic Disorders of Axon Guidance

    PubMed Central

    Engle, Elizabeth C.

    2010-01-01

    This article reviews symptoms and signs of aberrant axon connectivity in humans, and summarizes major human genetic disorders that result, or have been proposed to result, from defective axon guidance. These include corpus callosum agenesis, L1 syndrome, Joubert syndrome and related disorders, horizontal gaze palsy with progressive scoliosis, Kallmann syndrome, albinism, congenital fibrosis of the extraocular muscles type 1, Duane retraction syndrome, and pontine tegmental cap dysplasia. Genes mutated in these disorders can encode axon growth cone ligands and receptors, downstream signaling molecules, and axon transport motors, as well as proteins without currently recognized roles in axon guidance. Advances in neuroimaging and genetic techniques have the potential to rapidly expand this field, and it is feasible that axon guidance disorders will soon be recognized as a new and significant category of human neurodevelopmental disorders. PMID:20300212

  11. Genetic and Environmental Variation in Lung Function Drives Subsequent Variation in Aging of Fluid Intelligence

    PubMed Central

    Reynolds, Chandra A.; Emery, Charles F.; Pedersen, Nancy L.

    2013-01-01

    Longitudinal studies document an association of pulmonary function with cognitive function in middle-aged and older adults. Previous analyses have identified a genetic contribution to the relationship between pulmonary function with fluid intelligence. The goal of the current analysis was to apply the biometric dual change score model to consider the possibility of temporal dynamics underlying the genetic covariance between aging trajectories for pulmonary function and fluid intelligence. Longitudinal data from the Swedish Adoption/Twin Study of Aging were available from 808 twins ranging in age from 50 to 88 years at the first wave. Participants completed up to six assessments covering a 19-year period. Measures at each assessment included spatial and speed factors and pulmonary function. Model-fitting indicated that genetic variance for FEV1 was a leading indicator of variation in age changes for spatial and speed factors. Thus, these data indicate a genetic component to the directional relationship from decreased pulmonary function to decreased function of fluid intelligence. PMID:23760789

  12. Genetic Heterogeneity in Algerian Human Populations

    PubMed Central

    Deba, Tahria; Calafell, Francesc; Benhamamouch, Soraya; Comas, David

    2015-01-01

    The demographic history of human populations in North Africa has been characterized by complex processes of admixture and isolation that have modeled its current gene pool. Diverse genetic ancestral components with different origins (autochthonous, European, Middle Eastern, and sub-Saharan) and genetic heterogeneity in the region have been described. In this complex genetic landscape, Algeria, the largest country in Africa, has been poorly covered, with most of the studies using a single Algerian sample. In order to evaluate the genetic heterogeneity of Algeria, Y-chromosome, mtDNA and autosomal genome-wide makers have been analyzed in several Berber- and Arab-speaking groups. Our results show that the genetic heterogeneity found in Algeria is not correlated with geography or linguistics, challenging the idea of Berber groups being genetically isolated and Arab groups open to gene flow. In addition, we have found that external sources of gene flow into North Africa have been carried more often by females than males, while the North African autochthonous component is more frequent in paternally transmitted genome regions. Our results highlight the different demographic history revealed by different markers and urge to be cautious when deriving general conclusions from partial genomic information or from single samples as representatives of the total population of a region. PMID:26402429

  13. Investigation of Genetic Variation Underlying Central Obesity amongst South Asians

    PubMed Central

    Scott, William R.; Zhang, Weihua; Loh, Marie; Tan, Sian-Tsung; Lehne, Benjamin; Afzal, Uzma; Peralta, Juan; Saxena, Richa; Ralhan, Sarju; Wander, Gurpreet S.; Bozaoglu, Kiymet; Sanghera, Dharambir K.; Elliott, Paul; Scott, James; Chambers, John C.; Kooner, Jaspal S.

    2016-01-01

    South Asians are 1/4 of the world’s population and have increased susceptibility to central obesity and related cardiometabolic disease. Knowledge of genetic variants affecting risk of central obesity is largely based on genome-wide association studies of common SNPs in Europeans. To evaluate the contribution of DNA sequence variation to the higher levels of central obesity (defined as waist hip ratio adjusted for body mass index, WHR) among South Asians compared to Europeans we carried out: i) a genome-wide association analysis of >6M genetic variants in 10,318 South Asians with focused analysis of population-specific SNPs; ii) an exome-wide association analysis of ~250K SNPs in protein-coding regions in 2,637 South Asians; iii) a comparison of risk allele frequencies and effect sizes of 48 known WHR SNPs in 12,240 South Asians compared to Europeans. In genome-wide analyses, we found no novel associations between common genetic variants and WHR in South Asians at P<5x10-8; variants showing equivocal association with WHR (P<1x10-5) did not replicate at P<0.05 in an independent cohort of South Asians (N = 1,922) or in published, predominantly European meta-analysis data. In the targeted analyses of 122,391 population-specific SNPs we also found no associations with WHR in South Asians at P<0.05 after multiple testing correction. Exome-wide analyses showed no new associations between genetic variants and WHR in South Asians, either individually at P<1.5x10-6 or grouped by gene locus at P<2.5x10−6. At known WHR loci, risk allele frequencies were not higher in South Asians compared to Europeans (P = 0.77), while effect sizes were unexpectedly smaller in South Asians than Europeans (P<5.0x10-8). Our findings argue against an important contribution for population-specific or cosmopolitan genetic variants underlying the increased risk of central obesity in South Asians compared to Europeans. PMID:27195708

  14. Genetic variations and miRNA-target interactions contribute to natural phenotypic variations in Populus.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jinhui; Xie, Jianbo; Chen, Beibei; Quan, Mingyang; Li, Ying; Li, Bailian; Zhang, Deqiang

    2016-10-01

    Variation in regulatory factors, including microRNAs (miRNAs), contributes to variation in quantitative and complex traits. However, in plants, variants in miRNAs and their target genes that contribute to natural phenotypic variation, and the underlying regulatory networks, remain poorly characterized. We investigated the associations and interactions of single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in miRNAs and their target genes with phenotypes in 435 individuals from a natural population of Populus. We used RNA-seq to identify 217 miRNAs differentially expressed in a tension wood system, and identified 1196 candidate target genes; degradome sequencing confirmed 60 of the target sites. In addition, 72 miRNA-target pairs showed significant co-expression. Gene ontology (GO) term analysis showed that most of the genes in the co-regulated pairs participate in biological regulation. Genome resequencing found 5383 common SNPs (frequency ≥ 0.05) in 139 miRNAs and 31 037 SNPs in 819 target genes. Single-SNP association analyses identified 232 significant associations between wood traits (P ≤ 0.05) and SNPs in 102 miRNAs and 1387 associations with 478 target genes. Among these, 102 miRNA-target pairs associated with the same traits. Multi-SNP associations found 102 epistatic pairs associated with traits. Furthermore, a reconstructed regulatory network contained 12 significantly co-expressed pairs, including eight miRNAs and nine targets associated with traits. Lastly, both expression and genetic association showed that miR156i, miR156j, miR396a and miR6445b were involved in the formation of tension wood. This study shows that variants in miRNAs and target genes contribute to natural phenotypic variation and annotated roles and interactions of miRNAs and their target genes by genetic association analysis. PMID:27265357

  15. Neandertal origin of genetic variation at the cluster of OAS immunity genes.

    PubMed

    Mendez, Fernando L; Watkins, Joseph C; Hammer, Michael F

    2013-04-01

    Analyses of ancient DNA from extinct humans reveal signals of at least two independent hybridization events in the history of non-African populations. To date, there are very few examples of specific genetic variants that have been rigorously identified as introgressive. Here, we survey DNA sequence variation in the OAS gene cluster on chromosome 12 and provide strong evidence that a haplotype extending for ~185 kb introgressed from Neandertals. This haplotype is nearly restricted to Eurasians and is estimated to have diverged from the Neandertal sequence ~125 kya. Despite the potential for novel functional variation, the observed frequency of this haplotype is consistent with neutral introgression. This is the second locus in the human genome, after STAT2, carrying distinct haplotypes that appear to have introgressed separately from both Neandertals and Denisova. PMID:23315957

  16. Genome-wide patterns of genetic variation in worldwide Arabidopsis thaliana accessions from the RegMap panel

    PubMed Central

    Horton, Matthew W.; Hancock, Angela M.; Huang, Yu S.; Toomajian, Christopher; Atwell, Susanna; Auton, Adam; Muliyati, N. Wayan; Platt, Alexander; Sperone, F. Gianluca; Vilhjálmsson, Bjarni J.; Nordborg, Magnus; Borevitz, Justin O.; Bergelson, Joy

    2011-01-01

    Arabidopsis thaliana is native to Eurasia and naturalized across the world due to human disturbance. Its easy propagation and immense phenotypic variability make it an ideal model system for functional, ecological and evolutionary genetics. To date, analyses of its natural variation have involved small numbers of individuals or genetic markers. Here we genotype 1,307 world-wide accessions, including several regional samples, at 250K SNPs, enabling us to describe the global pattern of genetic variation with high resolution. Three complementary tests applied to these data reveal novel targets of selection. Furthermore, we characterize the pattern of historical recombination and observe an enrichment of hotspots in intergenic regions and repetitive DNA, consistent with the pattern observed for humans but strikingly different from other plant species. We are making seeds for this Regional Mapping (RegMap) panel publicly available; they comprise the largest genomic mapping resource available for a naturally occurring, non-human, species. PMID:22231484

  17. Parasite-host interaction in malaria: genetic clues and copy number variation

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    In humans, infections contribute highly to mortality and morbidity rates worldwide. Malaria tropica is one of the major infectious diseases globally and is caused by the protozoan parasite Plasmodium falciparum. Plasmodia have accompanied human beings since the emergence of humankind. Due to its pathogenicity, malaria is a powerful selective force on the human genome. Genetic epidemiology approaches such as family and twin studies, candidate gene studies, and disease-association studies have identified a number of genes that mediate relative protection against the severest forms of the disease. New molecular approaches, including genome-wide association studies, have recently been performed to expand our knowledge on the functional effect of human variation in malaria. For the future, a systematic determination of gene-dosage effects and expression profiles of protective genes might unveil the functional impact of structural alterations in these genes on either side of the host-parasite interaction. PMID:19725943

  18. Race, Common Genetic Variation, and Therapeutic Response Disparities in Heart Failure

    PubMed Central

    Taylor, Mathew R.; Sun, Albert Y.; Davis, Gordon; Fiuzat, Mona; Liggett, Stephen B.; Bristow, Michael R.

    2015-01-01

    Because of its relatively recent evolution, Homo sapiens exhibits relatively little within-species genomic diversity. However, because of genome size, a proportionally small amount of variation creates ample opportunity for both rare mutations that may be disease-causative as well as more common genetic variation that may be important in disease modification or pharmacogenetics. Primarily because of the East African origin of modern humans, individuals of African ancestry (AA) exhibit greater degrees of genetic diversity than more recently established populations, such as those of European ancestry (EA) or Asian ancestry. These population effects extend to differences in the frequency of common gene variants that may be important in heart failure natural history or therapy. For cell-signaling mechanisms important in heart failure, we review and present new data on genetic variation between AA and EA populations. The data indicate that 1) neurohormonal signaling mechanisms frequently (16 of the 19 investigated polymorphisms) exhibit racial differences in the allele frequencies of variants comprising key constituents, 2) some of these differences in allele frequency may differentially affect the natural history of heart failure in AA vs. EA individuals, and 3) in many cases these differences likely play a role in observed racial differences in drug or device response. PMID:25443111

  19. Population genetic variation in gene expression is associated withphenotypic variation in Saccharomyces cerevisiae

    SciTech Connect

    Fay, Justin C.; McCullough, Heather L.; Sniegowski, Paul D.; Eisen, Michael B.

    2004-02-25

    The relationship between genetic variation in gene expression and phenotypic variation observable in nature is not well understood. Identifying how many phenotypes are associated with differences in gene expression and how many gene-expression differences are associated with a phenotype is important to understanding the molecular basis and evolution of complex traits. Results: We compared levels of gene expression among nine natural isolates of Saccharomyces cerevisiae grown either in the presence or absence of copper sulfate. Of the nine strains, two show a reduced growth rate and two others are rust colored in the presence of copper sulfate. We identified 633 genes that show significant differences in expression among strains. Of these genes,20 were correlated with resistance to copper sulfate and 24 were correlated with rust coloration. The function of these genes in combination with their expression pattern suggests the presence of both correlative and causative expression differences. But the majority of differentially expressed genes were not correlated with either phenotype and showed the same expression pattern both in the presence and absence of copper sulfate. To determine whether these expression differences may contribute to phenotypic variation under other environmental conditions, we examined one phenotype, freeze tolerance, predicted by the differential expression of the aquaporin gene AQY2. We found freeze tolerance is associated with the expression of AQY2. Conclusions: Gene expression differences provide substantial insight into the molecular basis of naturally occurring traits and can be used to predict environment dependent phenotypic variation.

  20. Short communication: Genetic variation of riboflavin content in bovine milk.

    PubMed

    Poulsen, Nina A; Rybicka, Iga; Larsen, Lotte B; Buitenhuis, Albert J; Larsen, Mette K

    2015-05-01

    Riboflavin (vitamin B2) is an essential water-soluble vitamin; elderly people and adolescents in particular can have poor riboflavin status. In Western diets, milk and dairy products are primary sources of riboflavin, but little is known about the natural variation within and among bovine breeds, and how genetic and environmental factors can affect the riboflavin content in milk. As a part of the Danish-Swedish Milk Genomics Initiative, the aim of the study was to quantify milk riboflavin content using reverse-phase HPLC in 2 major Danish dairy breeds. The results showed substantial interbreed differences in milk riboflavin content. Milk from Danish Jersey cows contained significantly higher levels of riboflavin (1.93mg/L of milk) than milk from Danish Holstein cows (1.40mg/L of milk). Furthermore, genetic analyses revealed high heritabilities in both breeds (0.52 for Danish Holstein and 0.31 for Danish Jersey). A genomic association study found 35 significant single nucleotide polymorphisms (false discovery rate<0.10) to be associated with riboflavin content in milk in Jersey cows (all on BTA14 and BTA17), and 511 significant single nucleotide polymorphisms in Holstein cows spread over 25 different autosomes with BTA13 and BTA14 having the most promising quantitative trait loci. The best candidate gene found within the identified quantitative trait loci was SLC52A3, a riboflavin transporter gene, which was among the significant markers on BTA13 in Holstein cows. PMID:25771056

  1. Ecology and genetic variation of Amblyomma tonelliae in Argentina.

    PubMed

    Tarragona, E L; Mangold, A J; Mastropaolo, M; Guglielmone, A A; Nava, S

    2015-09-01

    The ecology of Amblyomma tonelliae (Ixodida: Ixodidae), including its seasonal distribution and the development periods of each stage, was investigated during a study carried out over two consecutive years in northwestern Argentina. In addition, the genetic variation of this tick was studied through analyses of 16S rDNA sequences. Amblyomma tonelliae has a 1-year lifecycle characterized by a long pre-moult period in larvae with no development of morphogenetic diapause. Larvae peak in abundance during late autumn and early winter; nymphs peak in abundance in spring, and adults do so from late spring to early summer. Amblyomma tonelliae shows a marked ecological preference for the driest areas of the Chaco ecoregion. In analyses of 16S rDNA sequences in genes from different populations of A. tonelliae, values for nucleotide diversity and the average number of nucleotide differences showed genetic diversity within this species to be low. No significant differences were found in comparisons among populations. PMID:25736471

  2. Genetic variation of germination cold tolerance in Japanese rice germplasm

    PubMed Central

    Bosetti, Fátima; Montebelli, Camila; Novembre, Ana Dionísia L.C.; Chamma, Helena Pescarin; Pinheiro, José Baldin

    2012-01-01

    Low temperatures at the initial stages of rice development prevent fast germination and seedling establishment and may cause significant productivity losses. In order to develop rice cultivars exhibiting cold tolerance, it is necessary to investigate genetic resources, providing basic knowledge to allow the introduction of genes involved in low temperature germination ability from accessions into elite cultivars. Japanese rice accessions were evaluated at the germination under two conditions: 13°C for 28 days (cold stress) and 28°C for seven days (optimal temperature). The traits studied were coleoptile and radicle length under optimal temperature, coleoptile and radicle length under cold and percentage of the reduction in coleptile and radicle length due to low temperature. Among the accessions studied, genetic variation for traits related to germination under low temperatures was observed and accessions exhibiting adequate performance for all investigated traits were identified. The use of multivariate analysis allowed the identification of the genotypes displaying cold tolerance by smaller reductions in coleoptile and radicle lenght in the presence of cold and high vigour, by higher coleoptile and radicle growth under cold. PMID:23226080

  3. Genome Architecture and Its Roles in Human Copy Number Variation

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Lu; Zhou, Weichen; Zhang, Ling

    2014-01-01

    Besides single-nucleotide variants in the human genome, large-scale genomic variants, such as copy number variations (CNVs), are being increasingly discovered as a genetic source of human diversity and the pathogenic factors of diseases. Recent experimental findings have shed light on the links between different genome architectures and CNV mutagenesis. In this review, we summarize various genomic features and discuss their contributions to CNV formation. Genomic repeats, including both low-copy and high-copy repeats, play important roles in CNV instability, which was initially known as DNA recombination events. Furthermore, it has been found that human genomic repeats can also induce DNA replication errors and consequently result in CNV mutations. Some recent studies showed that DNA replication timing, which reflects the high-order information of genomic organization, is involved in human CNV mutations. Our review highlights that genome architecture, from DNA sequence to high-order genomic organization, is an important molecular factor in CNV mutagenesis and human genomic instability. PMID:25705150

  4. Genetic specificity of a plant-insect food web: Implications for linking genetic variation to network complexity.

    PubMed

    Barbour, Matthew A; Fortuna, Miguel A; Bascompte, Jordi; Nicholson, Joshua R; Julkunen-Tiitto, Riitta; Jules, Erik S; Crutsinger, Gregory M

    2016-02-23

    Theory predicts that intraspecific genetic variation can increase the complexity of an ecological network. To date, however, we are lacking empirical knowledge of the extent to which genetic variation determines the assembly of ecological networks, as well as how the gain or loss of genetic variation will affect network structure. To address this knowledge gap, we used a common garden experiment to quantify the extent to which heritable trait variation in a host plant determines the assembly of its associated insect food web (network of trophic interactions). We then used a resampling procedure to simulate the additive effects of genetic variation on overall food-web complexity. We found that trait variation among host-plant genotypes was associated with resistance to insect herbivores, which indirectly affected interactions between herbivores and their insect parasitoids. Direct and indirect genetic effects resulted in distinct compositions of trophic interactions associated with each host-plant genotype. Moreover, our simulations suggest that food-web complexity would increase by 20% over the range of genetic variation in the experimental population of host plants. Taken together, our results indicate that intraspecific genetic variation can play a key role in structuring ecological networks, which may in turn affect network persistence. PMID:26858398

  5. Genetic Variations in the Serotoninergic System Contribute to Body-Mass Index in Chinese Adolescents

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Chuansheng; Moyzis, Robert; He, Qinghua; Lei, Xuemei; Li, Jin; Wang, Yunxin; Liu, Bin; Xiu, Daiming; Zhu, Bi; Dong, Qi

    2013-01-01

    Objective Obesity has become a worldwide health problem in the past decades. Human and animal studies have implicated serotonin in appetite regulation, and behavior genetic studies have shown that body mass index (BMI) has a strong genetic component. However, the roles of genes related to the serotoninergic (5-hydroxytryptamine,5-HT) system in obesity/BMI are not well understood, especially in Chinese subjects. Subjects and Design With a sample of 478 healthy Chinese volunteers, this study investigated the relation between BMI and genetic variations of the serotoninergic system as characterized by 136 representative polymorphisms. We used a system-level approach to identify SNPs associated with BMI, then estimated their overall contribution to BMI by multiple regression and verified it by permutation. Results We identified 12 SNPs that made statistically significant contributions to BMI. After controlling for gender and age, four of these SNPs accounted for 7.7% additional variance of BMI. Permutation analysis showed that the probability of obtaining these findings by chance was low (p = 0.015, permuted for 1000 times). Conclusion These results showed that genetic variations in the serotoninergic system made a moderate contribution to individual differences in BMI among a healthy Chinese sample, suggesting that a similar approach can be used to study obesity. PMID:23554917

  6. New Directions in Science Teaching: Human Genetics Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mertens, Thomas R.

    1983-01-01

    The range, complexity, and rapid increase of controversial knowledge about human genetics require that students be taught the biomedical facts and ethical dilemmas. Human genetics education thus provides an excellent opportunity for increasing scientific literacy generally. (PB)

  7. 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)

  8. Genetic variation in aggregation behaviour and interacting phenotypes in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Philippe, Anne-Sophie; Jeanson, Raphael; Pasquaretta, Cristian; Rebaudo, Francois; Sueur, Cedric; Mery, Frederic

    2016-03-30

    Aggregation behaviour is the tendency for animals to group together, which may have important consequences on individual fitness. We used a combination of experimental and simulation approaches to study how genetic variation and social environment interact to influence aggregation dynamics inDrosophila To do this, we used two different natural lines ofDrosophilathat arise from a polymorphism in theforaginggene (rovers and sitters). We placed groups of flies in a heated arena. Flies could freely move towards one of two small, cooler refuge areas. In groups of the same strain, sitters had a greater tendency to aggregate. The observed behavioural variation was based on only two parameters: the probability of entering a refuge and the likelihood of choosing a refuge based on the number of individuals present. We then directly addressed how different strains interact by mixing rovers and sitters within a group. Aggregation behaviour of each line was strongly affected by the presence of the other strain, without changing the decision rules used by each. Individuals obeying local rules shaped complex group dynamics via a constant feedback loop between the individual and the group. This study could help to identify the circumstances under which particular group compositions may improve individual fitness through underlying aggregation mechanisms under specific environmental conditions. PMID:27009219

  9. Genetic Variation among Endosymbionts of Widely Distributed Vestimentiferan Tubeworms

    PubMed Central

    Di Meo, Carol A.; Wilbur, Ami E.; Holben, William E.; Feldman, Robert A.; Vrijenhoek, Robert C.; Cary, S. Craig

    2000-01-01

    Vestimentiferan tubeworms thriving in sulfidic deep-sea hydrothermal vents and cold seeps are constrained by their nutritional reliance on chemoautotrophic endosymbionts. In a recent phylogenetic study using 16S ribosomal DNA, we found that endosymbionts from vent and seep habitats form two distinct clades with little variation within each clade. In the present study, we used two different approaches to assess the genetic variation among biogeographically distinct vestimentiferan symbionts. DNA sequences were obtained for the noncoding, internal transcribed spacer (ITS) regions of the rRNA operons of symbionts associated with six different genera of vestimentiferan tubeworms. ITS sequences from endosymbionts of host genera collected from different habitats and widely distributed vent sites were surprisingly conserved. Because the ITS region was not sufficient for distinguishing endosymbionts from different habitats or locations, we used a DNA fingerprinting technique, repetitive-extragenic-palindrome PCR (REP-PCR), to reveal differences in the distribution of repetitive sequences in the genomes of the bacterial endosymbionts. Most of the endosymbionts displayed unique REP-PCR patterns. A cladogram generated from these fingerprints reflected relationships that may be influenced by a variety of factors, including host genera, geographic location, and bottom type. PMID:10653731

  10. Transformation of Natural Genetic Variation into Haemophilus Influenzae Genomes

    PubMed Central

    Mell, Joshua Chang; Shumilina, Svetlana; Hall, Ira M.; Redfield, Rosemary J.

    2011-01-01

    Many bacteria are able to efficiently bind and take up double-stranded DNA fragments, and the resulting natural transformation shapes bacterial genomes, transmits antibiotic resistance, and allows escape from immune surveillance. The genomes of many competent pathogens show evidence of extensive historical recombination between lineages, but the actual recombination events have not been well characterized. We used DNA from a clinical isolate of Haemophilus influenzae to transform competent cells of a laboratory strain. To identify which of the ∼40,000 polymorphic differences had recombined into the genomes of four transformed clones, their genomes and their donor and recipient parents were deep sequenced to high coverage. Each clone was found to contain ∼1000 donor polymorphisms in 3–6 contiguous runs (8.1±4.5 kb in length) that collectively comprised ∼1–3% of each transformed chromosome. Seven donor-specific insertions and deletions were also acquired as parts of larger donor segments, but the presence of other structural variation flanking 12 of 32 recombination breakpoints suggested that these often disrupt the progress of recombination events. This is the first genome-wide analysis of chromosomes directly transformed with DNA from a divergent genotype, connecting experimental studies of transformation with the high levels of natural genetic variation found in isolates of the same species. PMID:21829353

  11. Founder effect: assessment of variation in genetic contributions among founders.

    PubMed

    O'Brien, E; Kerber, R A; Jorde, L B; Rogers, A R

    1994-04-01

    We present a Monte Carlo method for determining the distribution of founders' genetic contributions to descendant cohorts. The simulation of genes through known pedigrees generates the probability distributions of contributed genes in recent cohorts of descendants, their means, and their variances. Genealogical data from three populations are analyzed: the Hutterite population of North America, the island population of Sottunga from the Aland archipelago, and the large Utah Mormon population. Two applications of the Monte Carlo method are presented. First we investigate the relative opportunity for founder effect in the three populations, which have dissimilar pedigree structures and dissimilar disease gene frequencies. Second, we measure the reproductive success of population founders in terms of the number of genes they contribute to a cohort some number of generations descendant and compare the effects of polygyny versus monogamy on reproductive success. The distribution of Hutterite founder contributions describes the context for a classic founder effect. Hutterite founders have a higher probability of leaving no genes in the population (72%) than Sottunga (48%) and Mormon (48%) founders. However, founder genes that survive among Hutterite descendants do so in larger numbers on average than founder genes in the other two populations. Greater variation among monogamous Hutterite founders compared with Mormon polygynous founders demonstrates that polygyny alone does not maximize the variance in reproductive success; other population characteristics are at least as important for determining variability among individuals in their genetic contributions to a gene pool. Our findings make it difficult to appreciate the reproductive advantage of polygyny in the Mormon population. Although the expected gene contributions and their variances were larger for polygynous founders compared with other Mormons, the main effect of polygyny was to increase the probability that

  12. Population Genetics of Euphydryas Butterflies. I. Genetic Variation and the Neutrality Hypothesis

    PubMed Central

    McKechnie, Stephen W.; Ehrlich, Paul R.; White, Raymond R.

    1975-01-01

    Twenty-one populations of the checkerspot butterfly, Euphydryas editha, and ten populations of Euphydryas chalcedona were sampled for genetic variation at eight polymorphic enzyme loci. Both species possessed loci that were highly variable from population to population and loci that were virtually identical across all populations sampled. Our data indicate that the neutrality hypothesis is untenable for the loci studied, and therefore selection is indicated as the major factor responsible for producing these patterns. Thorough ecological work allowed gene flow to be ruled out (in almost all instances) as a factor maintaining similar gene frequencies across populations. The Lewontin-Krakauer test indicated magnitudes of heterogeneity among standardized variances of gene frequencies inconsistent with the neutrality hypothesis. The question of whether or not to correct this statistic for sample size is discussed. Observed equitability of gene frequencies of multiple allelic loci was found to be greater than that predicted under the neutrality hypothesis. Genetic differentiation presisting through two generations was found between the one pair of populations known to exchange significant numbers of individuals per generation. Two matrices of genetic distance between populations, based on the eight loci sampled, were found to be significantly correlated with a matrix of environmental distance, based on measures of fourteen environmental parameters. Correlations between gene frequencies and environmental parameters, results of multiple regression analysis, and results of principle component analysis showed strong patterns of association and of "explained" variation. The correlation analyses suggest which factors might be further investigated as proximate selective agents. PMID:1205135

  13. Melanoma susceptibility as a complex trait: genetic variation controls all stages of tumor progression.

    PubMed

    Ferguson, B; Ram, R; Handoko, H Y; Mukhopadhyay, P; Muller, H K; Soyer, H P; Morahan, G; Walker, G J

    2015-05-28

    Susceptibility to most common cancers is likely to involve interaction between multiple low risk genetic variants. Although there has been great progress in identifying such variants, their effect on phenotype and the mechanisms by which they contribute to disease remain largely unknown. We have developed a mouse melanoma model harboring two mutant oncogenes implicated in human melanoma, CDK4(R24C) and NRAS(Q61K). In these mice, tumors arise from benign precursor lesions that are a recognized strong risk factor for this neoplasm in humans. To define molecular events involved in the pathway to melanoma, we have for the first time applied the Collaborative Cross (CC) to cancer research. The CC is a powerful resource designed to expedite discovery of genes for complex traits. We characterized melanoma genesis in more than 50 CC strains and observed tremendous variation in all traits, including nevus and melanoma age of onset and multiplicity, anatomical site predilection, time for conversion of nevi to melanoma and metastases. Intriguingly, neonatal ultraviolet radiation exposure exacerbated nevus and melanoma formation in most, but not all CC strain backgrounds, suggesting that genetic variation within the CC will help explain individual sensitivity to sun exposure, the major environmental skin carcinogen. As genetic variation brings about dramatic phenotypic diversity in a single mouse model, melanoma-related endophenotype comparisons provide us with information about mechanisms of carcinogenesis, such as whether melanoma incidence is dependent upon the density of pre-existing nevus cells. Mouse models have been used to examine the functional role of gene mutations in tumorigenesis. This work represents their next phase of development to study how biological variation greatly influences lesion onset and aggressiveness even in the setting of known somatic driver mutations. PMID:25088201

  14. Genetic Basis of Human Circadian Rhythm Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Christopher R.; Huang, Angela L.; Ptáček, Louis J.; Fu, Ying-Hui

    2012-01-01

    Circadian rhythm disorders constitute a group of phenotypes that usually present as altered sleep-wake schedules. Until a human genetics approach was applied to investigate these traits, the genetic components regulating human circadian rhythm and sleep behaviors remained mysterious. Steady advances in the last decade have dramatically improved our understanding of the genes involved in circadian rhythmicity and sleep regulation. Finding these genes presents new opportunities to use a wide range of approaches, including in vitro molecular studies and in vivo animal modeling, to elevate our understanding of how sleep and circadian rhythms are regulated and maintained. Ultimately, this knowledge will reveal how circadian and sleep disruption contribute to various ailments and shed light on how best to maintain and recover good health. PMID:22849821

  15. Gene Conversion in Human Genetic Disease

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Jian-Min; Férec, Claude; Cooper, David N.

    2010-01-01

    Gene conversion is a specific type of homologous recombination that involves the unidirectional transfer of genetic material from a ‘donor’ sequence to a highly homologous ‘acceptor’. We have recently reviewed the molecular mechanisms underlying gene conversion, explored the key part that this process has played in fashioning extant human genes, and performed a meta-analysis of gene-conversion events known to have caused human genetic disease. Here we shall briefly summarize some of the latest developments in the study of pathogenic gene conversion events, including (i) the emerging idea of minimal efficient sequence homology (MESH) for homologous recombination, (ii) the local DNA sequence features that appear to predispose to gene conversion, (iii) a mechanistic comparison of gene conversion and transient hypermutability, and (iv) recently reported examples of pathogenic gene conversion events. PMID:24710102

  16. Advances in gene technology: Human genetic disorders

    SciTech Connect

    Scott, W.A.; Ahmad, F.; Black, S.; Schultz, J.; Whelan, W.J.

    1984-01-01

    This book discusses the papers presented at the conference on the subject of ''advances in Gene technology: Human genetic disorders''. Molecular biology of various carcinomas and inheritance of metabolic diseases is discussed and technology advancement in diagnosis of hereditary diseases is described. Some of the titles discussed are-Immunoglobulin genes translocation and diagnosis; hemophilia; oncogenes; oncogenic transformations; experimental data on mice, hamsters, birds carcinomas and sarcomas.

  17. Patenting human genetic material: refocusing the debate

    PubMed Central

    Caulfield, Timothy; Gold, E. Richard; Cho, Mildred K.

    2008-01-01

    The biotechnology industry has become firmly established over the past twenty years and gene patents have played an important part in this phenomenon. However, concerns have been raised over the patentability of human genetic material, through public protests and international statements, but to little effect. Here we discuss some of these concerns, the patent authorities’ response to them, and ways in which to address these issues and to move the debate forward using current legal structures. PMID:11252752

  18. HLA variation reveals genetic continuity rather than population group structure in East Asia.

    PubMed

    Di, Da; Sanchez-Mazas, Alicia

    2014-03-01

    Genetic differences between Northeast Asian (NEA) and Southeast Asian (SEA) populations have been observed in numerous studies. At the among-population level, despite a clear north-south differentiation observed for many genetic markers, debates were led between abrupt differences and a continuous pattern. At the within-population level, whether NEA or SEA populations have higher genetic diversity is also highly controversial. In this study, we analyzed a large set of HLA data from East Asia in order to map the genetic variation among and within populations in this continent and to clarify the distribution pattern of HLA lineages and alleles. We observed a genetic differentiation between NEA and SEA populations following a continuous pattern from north to south, and we show a significant and continuous decrease of HLA diversity by the same direction. This continuity is shaped by clinal distributions of many HLA lineages and alleles with increasing or decreasing frequencies along the latitude. These results bring new evidence in favor of the "overlapping model" proposed previously for East Asian peopling history, whereby modern humans migrated eastward from western Eurasia via two independent routes along each side of the Himalayas and, later, overlapped in East Asia across open land areas. Our study strongly suggests that intensive gene flow between NEA and SEA populations occurred and shaped the latitude-related continuous pattern of genetic variation and the peculiar HLA lineage and allele distributions observed in this continent. Probably for a very long period, the exact duration of these events remains to be estimated. PMID:24449274

  19. Frequency variations of discrete cranial traits in major human populations. III. Hyperostotic variations

    PubMed Central

    HANIHARA, TSUNEHIKO; ISHIDA, HAJIME

    2001-01-01

    Seven discrete cranial traits usually categorised as hyperostotic characters, the medial palatine canal, hypoglossal canal bridging, precondylar tubercle, condylus tertius, jugular foramen bridging, auditory exostosis, and mylohyoid bridging were investigated in 81 major human population samples from around the world. Significant asymmetric occurrences of the bilateral traits were detected in the medial palatine canal and jugular foramen bridging in several samples. Significant intertrait associations were found between some pairs of the traits, but not consistently across the large geographical samples. The auditory exostosis showed a predominant occurrence in males. With the exception of the auditory exostosis and mylohyoid bridging in a few samples, significant sex differences were slight. The frequency distributions of the traits (except for the auditory exostosis) showed some interregional clinality and intraregional discontinuity, suggesting that genetic drift could have contributed to the observed pattern of variation. PMID:11554504

  20. Characterization of Greater Middle Eastern genetic variation for enhanced disease gene discovery.

    PubMed

    Scott, Eric M; Halees, Anason; Itan, Yuval; Spencer, Emily G; He, Yupeng; Azab, Mostafa Abdellateef; Gabriel, Stacey B; Belkadi, Aziz; Boisson, Bertrand; Abel, Laurent; Clark, Andrew G; Alkuraya, Fowzan S; Casanova, Jean-Laurent; Gleeson, Joseph G

    2016-09-01

    The Greater Middle East (GME) has been a central hub of human migration and population admixture. The tradition of consanguinity, variably practiced in the Persian Gulf region, North Africa, and Central Asia, has resulted in an elevated burden of recessive disease. Here we generated a whole-exome GME variome from 1,111 unrelated subjects. We detected substantial diversity and admixture in continental and subregional populations, corresponding to several ancient founder populations with little evidence of bottlenecks. Measured consanguinity rates were an order of magnitude above those in other sampled populations, and the GME population exhibited an increased burden of runs of homozygosity (ROHs) but showed no evidence for reduced burden of deleterious variation due to classically theorized 'genetic purging'. Applying this database to unsolved recessive conditions in the GME population reduced the number of potential disease-causing variants by four- to sevenfold. These results show variegated genetic architecture in GME populations and support future human genetic discoveries in Mendelian and population genetics. PMID:27428751

  1. Copy Number Variation in Human Health, Disease, and Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Feng; Gu, Wenli; Hurles, Matthew E.; Lupski, James R.

    2015-01-01

    Copy number variation (CNV) is a source of genetic diversity in humans. Numerous CNVs are being identified with various genome analysis platforms, including array comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH), single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) genotyping platforms, and next-generation sequencing. CNV formation occurs by both recombination-based and replication-based mechanisms and de novo locus-specific mutation rates appear much higher for CNVs than for SNPs. By various molecular mechanisms, including gene dosage, gene disruption, gene fusion, position effects, etc., CNVs can cause Mendelian or sporadic traits, or be associated with complex diseases. However, CNV can also represent benign polymorphic variants. CNVs, especially gene duplication and exon shuffling, can be a predominant mechanism driving gene and genome evolution. PMID:19715442

  2. Plant-Species Diversity Correlates with Genetic Variation of an Oligophagous Seed Predator

    PubMed Central

    Laukkanen, Liisa; Mutikainen, Pia; Muola, Anne; Leimu, Roosa

    2014-01-01

    Several characteristics of habitats of herbivores and their food-plant communities, such as plant-species composition and plant quality, influence population genetics of both herbivores and their host plants. We investigated how different ecological and geographic factors affect genetic variation in and differentiation of 23 populations of the oligophagous seed predator Lygaeus equestris (Heteroptera) in southwestern Finland and in eastern Sweden. We tested whether genetic differentiation of the L. equestris populations was related to the similarity of vegetation, and whether there was more within-population genetic variation in habitats with a high number of plant species or in those with a large population of the primary food plant, Vincetoxicum hirundinaria. We also tested whether genetic differentiation of the populations was related to the geographic distance, and whether location of the populations on islands or on mainland, island size, or population size affected within-population genetic variation. Pairwise FST ranged from 0 to 0.1 indicating low to moderate genetic differentiation of populations. Differentiation increased with geographic distance between the populations, but was not related to the similarity of vegetation between the habitats. Genetic variation within the L. equestris populations did not increase with the population size of the primary food plant. However, the more diverse the plant community the higher was the level of genetic variation within the L. equestris population. Furthermore, the level of genetic variation did not vary significantly between island and mainland populations. The effect of the population size on within-population genetic variation was related to island size. Usually small populations are susceptible to loss of genetic variation, but small L. equestris populations on large islands seemed to maintain a relatively high level of within-population genetic variation. Our findings suggest that, in addition to geographic

  3. Temporal variation of genetic composition in Atlantic salmon populations from the Western White Sea Basin: influence of anthropogenic factors?

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Studies of the temporal patterns of population genetic structure assist in evaluating the consequences of demographic and environmental changes on population stability and persistence. In this study, we evaluated the level of temporal genetic variation in 16 anadromous and 2 freshwater salmon populations from the Western White Sea Basin (Russia) using samples collected between 1995 and 2008. To assess whether the genetic stability was affected by human activity, we also evaluated the effect of fishing pressure on the temporal genetic variation in this region. Results We found that the genetic structure of salmon populations in this region was relatively stable over a period of 1.5 to 2.5 generations. However, the level of temporal variation varied among geographical regions: anadromous salmon of the Kola Peninsula exhibited a higher stability compared to that of the anadromous and freshwater salmon from the Karelian White Sea coast. This discrepancy was most likely attributed to the higher census, and therefore effective, population sizes of the populations inhabiting the rivers of the Kola Peninsula compared to salmon of the Karelian White Sea coast. Importantly, changes in the genetic diversity observed in a few anadromous populations were best explained by the increased level of fishing pressure in these populations rather than environmental variation or the negative effects of hatchery escapees. The observed population genetic patterns of isolation by distance remained consistent among earlier and more recent samples, which support the stability of the genetic structure over the period studied. Conclusions Given the increasing level of fishing pressure in the Western White Sea Basin and the higher level of temporal variation in populations exhibiting small census and effective population sizes, further genetic monitoring in this region is recommended, particularly on populations from the Karelian rivers. PMID:24053319

  4. Sequence variation in the human T-cell receptor loci.

    PubMed

    Mackelprang, Rachel; Carlson, Christopher S; Subrahmanyan, Lakshman; Livingston, Robert J; Eberle, Michael A; Nickerson, Deborah A

    2002-12-01

    Identifying common sequence variations known as single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in human populations is one of the current objectives of the human genome project. Nearly 3 million SNPs have been identified. Analysis of the relative allele frequency of these markers in human populations and the genetic associations between these markers, known as linkage disequilibrium, is now underway to generate a high-density genetic map. Because of the central role T cells play in immune reactivity, the T-cell receptor (TCR) loci have long been considered important candidates for common disease susceptibility within the immune system (e.g., asthma, atopy and autoimmunity). Over the past two decades, hundreds of SNPs in the TCR loci have been identified. Most studies have focused on defining SNPs in the variable gene segments which are involved in antigenic recognition. On average, the coding sequence of each TCR variable gene segment contains two SNPs, with many more found in the 5', 3' and intronic sequences of these segments. Therefore, a potentially large repertoire of functional variants exists in these loci. Association between SNPs (linkage disequilibrium) extends approximately 30 kb in the TCR loci, although a few larger regions of disequilibrium have been identified. Therefore, the SNPs found in one variable gene segment may or may not be associated with SNPs in other surrounding variable gene segments. This suggests that meaningful association studies in the TCR loci will require the analysis and typing of large marker sets to fully evaluate the role of TCR loci in common disease susceptibility in human populations. PMID:12493004

  5. Identifying Interacting Genetic Variations by Fish-Swarm Logic Regression

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Aiyuan; Yan, Chunxia; Zhu, Feng; Zhao, Zhongmeng; Cao, Zhi

    2013-01-01

    Understanding associations between genotypes and complex traits is a fundamental problem in human genetics. A major open problem in mapping phenotypes is that of identifying a set of interacting genetic variants, which might contribute to complex traits. Logic regression (LR) is a powerful multivariant association tool. Several LR-based approaches have been successfully applied to different datasets. However, these approaches are not adequate with regard to accuracy and efficiency. In this paper, we propose a new LR-based approach, called fish-swarm logic regression (FSLR), which improves the logic regression process by incorporating swarm optimization. In our approach, a school of fish agents are conducted in parallel. Each fish agent holds a regression model, while the school searches for better models through various preset behaviors. A swarm algorithm improves the accuracy and the efficiency by speeding up the convergence and preventing it from dropping into local optimums. We apply our approach on a real screening dataset and a series of simulation scenarios. Compared to three existing LR-based approaches, our approach outperforms them by having lower type I and type II error rates, being able to identify more preset causal sites, and performing at faster speeds. PMID:23984382

  6. Genetic and environmental factors in human cleft lip and palate.

    PubMed

    Vieira, Alexandre R

    2012-01-01

    Cleft lip and palate is the most common craniofacial birth defect and its etiology has been the focus of many reports in the literature. It is well accepted that both genetics and environment play a role in the condition, however we still have not been able to translate what have been learned into clinical applications. This paper provides an interpretation of the latest research findings in humans and a perspective for where the field is going. The latest effort in gene identification and the associations between isolated cleft lip and palate and the loci harboring IRF6 (1q32) and 8q24.21 are highlighted, as well as the latest insight from more sophisticated phenotypical characterization and the inclusion of covariables related to the environment in the analysis of genetic variation. PMID:22759667

  7. Genetic variation in polyploid forage grass: Assessing the molecular genetic variability in the Paspalum genus

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Paspalum (Poaceae) is an important genus of the tribe Paniceae, which includes several species of economic importance for foraging, turf and ornamental purposes, and has a complex taxonomical classification. Because of the widespread interest in several species of this genus, many accessions have been conserved in germplasm banks and distributed throughout various countries around the world, mainly for the purposes of cultivar development and cytogenetic studies. Correct identification of germplasms and quantification of their variability are necessary for the proper development of conservation and breeding programs. Evaluation of microsatellite markers in different species of Paspalum conserved in a germplasm bank allowed assessment of the genetic differences among them and assisted in their proper botanical classification. Results Seventeen new polymorphic microsatellites were developed for Paspalum atratum Swallen and Paspalum notatum Flüggé, twelve of which were transferred to 35 Paspalum species and used to evaluate their variability. Variable degrees of polymorphism were observed within the species. Based on distance-based methods and a Bayesian clustering approach, the accessions were divided into three main species groups, two of which corresponded to the previously described Plicatula and Notata Paspalum groups. In more accurate analyses of P. notatum accessions, the genetic variation that was evaluated used thirty simple sequence repeat (SSR) loci and revealed seven distinct genetic groups and a correspondence of these groups to the three botanical varieties of the species (P. notatum var. notatum, P. notatum var. saurae and P. notatum var. latiflorum). Conclusions The molecular genetic approach employed in this study was able to distinguish many of the different taxa examined, except for species that belong to the Plicatula group, which has historically been recognized as a highly complex group. Our molecular genetic approach represents a

  8. Genetic Analysis of Human Preimplantation Embryos.

    PubMed

    Garcia-Herrero, S; Cervero, A; Mateu, E; Mir, P; Póo, M E; Rodrigo, L; Vera, M; Rubio, C

    2016-01-01

    Preimplantation development comprises the initial stages of mammalian development, before the embryo implants into the mother's uterus. In normal conditions, after fertilization the embryo grows until reaching blastocyst stage. The blastocyst grows as the cells divide and the cavity expands, until it arrives at the uterus, where it "hatches" from the zona pellucida to implant into the uterine wall. Nevertheless, embryo quality and viability can be affected by chromosomal abnormalities, most of which occur during gametogenesis and early embryo development; human embryos produced in vitro are especially vulnerable. Therefore, the selection of chromosomally normal embryos for transfer in assisted reproduction can improve outcomes in poor-prognosis patients. Additionally, in couples with an inherited disorder, early diagnosis could prevent pregnancy with an affected child and would, thereby, avoid the therapeutic interruption of pregnancy. These concerns have prompted advancements in the use of preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD). Genetic testing is applied in two different scenarios: in couples with an inherited genetic disorder or carriers of a structural chromosomal abnormality, it is termed PGD; in infertile couples with increased risk of generating embryos with de novo chromosome abnormalities, it is termed preimplantation genetic screening, or PGS. PMID:27475859

  9. Genetic Variation and Population Substructure in Outbred CD-1 Mice: Implications for Genome-Wide Association Studies

    PubMed Central

    Aldinger, Kimberly A.; Sokoloff, Greta; Rosenberg, David M.; Palmer, Abraham A.; Millen, Kathleen J.

    2009-01-01

    Outbred laboratory mouse populations are widely used in biomedical research. Since little is known about the degree of genetic variation present in these populations, they are not widely used for genetic studies. Commercially available outbred CD-1 mice are drawn from an extremely large breeding population that has accumulated many recombination events, which is desirable for genome-wide association studies. We therefore examined the degree of genome-wide variation within CD-1 mice to investigate their suitability for genetic studies. The CD-1 mouse genome displays patterns of linkage disequilibrium and heterogeneity similar to wild-caught mice. Population substructure and phenotypic differences were observed among CD-1 mice obtained from different breeding facilities. Differences in genetic variation among CD-1 mice from distinct facilities were similar to genetic differences detected between closely related human populations, consistent with a founder effect. This first large-scale genetic analysis of the outbred CD-1 mouse strain provides important considerations for the design and analysis of genetic studies in CD-1 mice. PMID:19266100

  10. Genetics of single-cell protein abundance variation in large yeast populations.

    PubMed

    Albert, Frank W; Treusch, Sebastian; Shockley, Arthur H; Bloom, Joshua S; Kruglyak, Leonid

    2014-02-27

    Variation among individuals arises in part from differences in DNA sequences, but the genetic basis for variation in most traits, including common diseases, remains only partly understood. Many DNA variants influence phenotypes by altering the expression level of one or several genes. The effects of such variants can be detected as expression quantitative trait loci (eQTL). Traditional eQTL mapping requires large-scale genotype and gene expression data for each individual in the study sample, which limits sample sizes to hundreds of individuals in both humans and model organisms and reduces statistical power. Consequently, many eQTL are probably missed, especially those with smaller effects. Furthermore, most studies use messenger RNA rather than protein abundance as the measure of gene expression. Studies that have used mass-spectrometry proteomics reported unexpected differences between eQTL and protein QTL (pQTL) for the same genes, but these studies have been even more limited in scope. Here we introduce a powerful method for identifying genetic loci that influence protein expression in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. We measure single-cell protein abundance through the use of green fluorescent protein tags in very large populations of genetically variable cells, and use pooled sequencing to compare allele frequencies across the genome in thousands of individuals with high versus low protein abundance. We applied this method to 160 genes and detected many more loci per gene than previous studies. We also observed closer correspondence between loci that influence protein abundance and loci that influence mRNA abundance of a given gene. Most loci that we detected were clustered in 'hotspots' that influence multiple proteins, and some hotspots were found to influence more than half of the proteins that we examined. The variants that underlie these hotspots have profound effects on the gene regulatory network and provide insights into genetic variation in cell

  11. Genetics of single-cell protein abundance variation in large yeast populations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Albert, Frank W.; Treusch, Sebastian; Shockley, Arthur H.; Bloom, Joshua S.; Kruglyak, Leonid

    2014-02-01

    Variation among individuals arises in part from differences in DNA sequences, but the genetic basis for variation in most traits, including common diseases, remains only partly understood. Many DNA variants influence phenotypes by altering the expression level of one or several genes. The effects of such variants can be detected as expression quantitative trait loci (eQTL). Traditional eQTL mapping requires large-scale genotype and gene expression data for each individual in the study sample, which limits sample sizes to hundreds of individuals in both humans and model organisms and reduces statistical power. Consequently, many eQTL are probably missed, especially those with smaller effects. Furthermore, most studies use messenger RNA rather than protein abundance as the measure of gene expression. Studies that have used mass-spectrometry proteomics reported unexpected differences between eQTL and protein QTL (pQTL) for the same genes, but these studies have been even more limited in scope. Here we introduce a powerful method for identifying genetic loci that influence protein expression in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. We measure single-cell protein abundance through the use of green fluorescent protein tags in very large populations of genetically variable cells, and use pooled sequencing to compare allele frequencies across the genome in thousands of individuals with high versus low protein abundance. We applied this method to 160 genes and detected many more loci per gene than previous studies. We also observed closer correspondence between loci that influence protein abundance and loci that influence mRNA abundance of a given gene. Most loci that we detected were clustered in `hotspots' that influence multiple proteins, and some hotspots were found to influence more than half of the proteins that we examined. The variants that underlie these hotspots have profound effects on the gene regulatory network and provide insights into genetic variation in cell

  12. Genetic variation underlying protein expression in eggs of the marine mussel Mytilus edulis.

    PubMed

    Diz, Angel P; Dudley, Edward; MacDonald, Barry W; Piña, Benjamin; Kenchington, Ellen L R; Zouros, Eleftherios; Skibinski, David O F

    2009-01-01

    Study of the genetic basis of gene expression variation is central to attempts to understand the causes of evolutionary change. Although there are many transcriptomics studies estimating genetic variance and heritability in model organisms such as humans there is a lack of equivalent proteomics studies. In the present study, the heritability underlying egg protein expression was estimated in the marine mussel Mytilus. We believe this to be the first such measurement of genetic variation for gene expression in eggs of any organism. The study of eggs is important in evolutionary theory and life history analysis because maternal effects might have profound effects on the rate of evolution of offspring traits. Evidence is presented that the egg proteome varies significantly between individual females and that heritability of protein expression in mussel eggs is moderate to high suggesting abundant genetic variation on which natural selection might act. The study of the mussel egg proteome is also important because of the unusual system of mitochondrial DNA inheritance in mussels whereby different mitochondrial genomes are transmitted independently through female and male lineages (doubly uniparental inheritance). It is likely that the mechanism underlying this system involves the interaction of specific egg factors with sperm mitochondria following fertilization, and its elucidation might be advanced by study of the proteome in females having different progeny sex ratios. Putative identifications are presented here for egg proteins using MS/MS in Mytilus lines differing in sex ratio. Ontology terms relating to stress response and protein folding occur more frequently for proteins showing large expression differences between the lines. The distribution of ontology terms in mussel eggs was compared with those for previous mussel proteomics studies (using other tissues) and with mammal eggs. Significant differences were observed between mussel eggs and mussel tissues but

  13. Human genetic disorders of sphingolipid biosynthesis.

    PubMed

    Astudillo, Leonardo; Sabourdy, Frédérique; Therville, Nicole; Bode, Heiko; Ségui, Bruno; Andrieu-Abadie, Nathalie; Hornemann, Thorsten; Levade, Thierry

    2015-01-01

    Monogenic defects of sphingolipid biosynthesis have been recently identified in human patients. These enzyme deficiencies affect the synthesis of sphingolipid precursors, ceramides or complex glycosphingolipids. They are transmitted as autosomal recessive or dominant traits, and their resulting phenotypes often replicate the abnormalities seen in murine models deficient for the corresponding enzymes. In quite good agreement with the known critical roles of sphingolipids in cells from the nervous system and the epidermis, these genetic defects clinically manifest as neurological disorders, including paraplegia, epilepsy or peripheral neuropathies, or present with ichthyosis. The present review summarizes the genetic alterations, biochemical changes and clinical symptoms of this new group of inherited metabolic disorders. Hypotheses regarding the molecular pathophysiology and potential treatments of these diseases are also discussed. PMID:25141825

  14. PATENTS IN GENOMICS AND HUMAN GENETICS

    PubMed Central

    Cook-Deegan, Robert; Heaney, Christopher

    2010-01-01

    Genomics and human genetics are scientifically fundamental and commercially valuable. These fields grew to prominence in an era of growth in government and nonprofit research funding, and of even greater growth of privately funded research and development in biotechnology and pharmaceuticals. Patents on DNA technologies are a central feature of this story, illustrating how patent law adapts---and sometimes fails to adapt---to emerging genomic technologies. In instrumentation and for therapeutic proteins, patents have largely played their traditional role of inducing investment in engineering and product development, including expensive postdiscovery clinical research to prove safety and efficacy. Patents on methods and DNA sequences relevant to clinical genetic testing show less evidence of benefits and more evidence of problems and impediments, largely attributable to university exclusive licensing practices. Whole-genome sequencing will confront uncertainty about infringing granted patents but jurisprudence trends away from upholding the broadest and potentially most troublesome patent claims. PMID:20590431

  15. Genetic Variation in Serotonin Transporter Modulates Tactile Hyperresponsiveness in ASD

    PubMed Central

    Schauder, Kimberly B.; Muller, Christopher L.; Veenstra-VanderWeele, Jeremy; Cascio, Carissa J.

    2014-01-01

    Several lines of evidence implicate dysfunction of the serotonin (5-HT) system in autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Specifically, the serotonin transporter (5-HTT, SERT) has been scrutinized as an ASD candidate risk gene. SERT plays key roles in the development of circuits that underlie sensory function, particularly in the somatosensory system. One previous study in ASD found association of a rare, hyperfunctional SERT variant with sensory aversion, but studies of common SERT variants have never examined sensory symptoms in ASD. Using standardized caregiver assessments of sensory function in children, we evaluated patterns of sensory responsiveness in 47 children with ASD and 38 typically developing (TD) children. Study participants were genotyped for the functional SERT promoter polymorphisms, 5-HTTLPR and rs25531, to test the hypothesis that the higher expressing genotypes would be associated with hyperresponsiveness to touch, a common sensory aversion in ASD. All measures of sensory hypo- and hyperresponsiveness were increased in children with ASD, with hyporesponsive sensory patterns negatively correlated to age and hyperresponsive sensory patterns positively correlated to repetitive behavior. Strikingly, high-expressing SERT genotypes were associated with increased tactile hyperresponsiveness in the ASD group. Our findings indicate genetic variation that increases SERT function may specifically impact somatosensory processing in ASD. PMID:25558276

  16. Genetic and phenotypic intraspecific variation in the microsporidian Encephalitozoon hellem.

    PubMed

    Mathis, A; Tanner, I; Weber, R; Deplazes, P

    1999-05-01

    Encephalitozoon hellem is a microsporidian species that causes disseminated infections in HIV-positive patients. Identical genotypes of E. hellem, as assessed by the sequence of the rDNA internal transcribed spacer, have been identified in isolates from humans and from a psittacine bird. However, by analysing the rDNA ITS of four E. hellem isolates from Switzerland (three) and Tanzania (one), two new genotypes were identified. Differences among the E. hellem isolates were also detected by Western blot analysis, but there was no absolute match between ITS genotype and antigen profile. Hence, strain variation exists in E. hellem and the ITS sequence seems a valuable marker in obtaining further insight into the epidemiology of this pathogen. PMID:10404273

  17. Genetics of human iris colour and patterns.

    PubMed

    Sturm, Richard A; Larsson, Mats

    2009-10-01

    The presence of melanin pigment within the iris is responsible for the visual impression of human eye colouration with complex patterns also evident in this tissue, including Fuchs' crypts, nevi, Wolfflin nodules and contraction furrows. The genetic basis underlying the determination and inheritance of these traits has been the subject of debate and research from the very beginning of quantitative trait studies in humans. Although segregation of blue-brown eye colour has been described using a simple Mendelian dominant-recessive gene model this is too simplistic, and a new molecular genetic perspective is needed to fully understand the biological complexities of this process as a polygenic trait. Nevertheless, it has been estimated that 74% of the variance in human eye colour can be explained by one interval on chromosome 15 that contains the OCA2 gene. Fine mapping of this region has identified a single base change rs12913832 T/C within intron 86 of the upstream HERC2 locus that explains almost all of this association with blue-brown eye colour. A model is presented whereby this SNP, serving as a target site for the SWI/SNF family member HLTF, acts as part of a highly evolutionary conserved regulatory element required for OCA2 gene activation through chromatin remodelling. Major candidate genes possibly effecting iris patterns are also discussed, including MITF and PAX6. PMID:19619260

  18. Defining the Influence of Germline Variation on Metastasis Using Systems Genetics Approaches.

    PubMed

    Lee, M; Crawford, N P S

    2016-01-01

    Cancer is estimated to be responsible for 8 million deaths worldwide and over half a million deaths every year in the United States. The majority of cancer-related deaths in solid tumors is directly associated with the effects of metastasis. While the influence of germline factors on cancer risk and development has long been recognized, the contribution of hereditary variation to tumor progression and metastasis has only gained acceptance more recently. A variety of approaches have been used to define how hereditary variation influences tumor progression and metastasis. One approach that garnered much early attention was epidemiological studies of cohorts of cancer patients, which demonstrated that specific loci within the human genome are associated with a differential propensity for aggressive tumor development. However, a powerful, and somewhat underutilized approach has been the use of systems genetics approaches in transgenic mouse models of human cancer. Such approaches are typically multifaceted, and involve integration of multiple lines of evidence derived, for example, from genetic and transcriptomic screens of genetically diverse mouse models of cancer, coupled with bioinformatics analysis of human cancer datasets, and functional analysis of candidate genes. These methodologies have allowed for the identification of multiple hereditary metastasis susceptibility genes, with wide-ranging cellular functions including regulation of gene transcription, cell proliferation, and cell-cell adhesion. In this chapter, we review how each of these approaches have facilitated the identification of these hereditary metastasis modifiers, the molecular functions of these metastasis-associated genes, and the implications of these findings upon patient survival. PMID:27613130

  19. The Genetics of Sun Sensitivity in Humans

    PubMed Central

    Rees, Jonathan L.

    2004-01-01

    Humans vary >100-fold in their sensitivity to the harmful effects of ultraviolet radiation. The main determinants of sensitivity are melanin pigmentation and less-well-characterized differences in skin inflammation and repair processes. Pigmentation has a high heritability, but susceptibility to cancers of the skin, a key marker of sun sensitivity, is less heritable. Despite a large number of murine coat-color mutations, only one gene in humans, the melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R), is known to account for substantial variation in skin and hair color and in skin cancer incidence. MC1R encodes a 317–amino acid G-coupled receptor that controls the relative amounts of the two major melanin classes, eumelanin and pheomelanin. Most persons with red hair are homozygous for alleles of the MC1R gene that show varying degrees of diminished function. More than 65 human MC1R alleles with nonsynonymous changes have been identified, and current evidence suggests that many of them vary in their physiological activity, such that a graded series of responses can be achieved on the basis of (i) dosage effects (of one or two alleles) and (ii) individual differences in the pharmacological profile in response to ligand. Thus, a single locus, identified within a Mendelian framework, can contribute significantly to human pigmentary variation. PMID:15372380

  20. Hominin interbreeding and the evolution of human variation.

    PubMed

    Ko, Kwang Hyun

    2016-12-01

    Mitochondrial Eve confirms the "out of Africa" theory, but the evidence also supports interbreeding between Homo sapiens and other hominins: Neanderthals, Denisovans, and Homo heidelbergensis. This article explains how interbreeding between early H. sapiens and archaic hominins occurred. The availability of edible insects in East Asia aided the spread of the unaggressive, highly cooperative Neanderthals, who interbred with H. sapiens in Asia, resulting in a higher admixture of Neanderthal DNA in East Asian populations. Geographical variation in degree of interbreeding between H. sapiens and Neanderthals likely contributed to neurological and behavioral differences in modern humans. Similarly, people with Denisovan genetic admixture were better able to dwell in mountainous regions, allowing their genetic legacy to cross the Himalayas and persist in Southeast Asian and Oceanian H. sapiens. In the Sub-Saharan region, unaffected by Denisovan or Neanderthal interbreeding, H. sapiens interbred with H. heidelbergensis, because high humidity militated against fire-making and allowed the survival of these non-fire-making hominins. PMID:27429943

  1. GENETIC VARIATION IN CLONAL VERTEBRATES DETECTED BY SIMPLE SEQUENCE FINGERPRINTING

    EPA Science Inventory

    Measurement of clonal heterogeneity is central to understanding evolutionary and population genetics of roughly 50 species of vertebrates lack effective genetic recombination. imple-sequence DNA fingerprinting with oligonucleotide probes (CAG)5 and (GACA)4 was used to detect hete...

  2. Knowledge Gaining by Human Genetic Studies on Tuberculosis Susceptibility

    PubMed Central

    Qu, Hui-Qi; Fisher-Hoch, Susan P; McCormick, Joseph B

    2011-01-01

    Tuberculosis (TB) is a serious health issue in the developing world. Lack of knowledge on the etiological mechanisms of TB hinders the development of effective strategies for the treatment or prevention of TB disease. Human genetic study is an indispensable approach to understand the molecular basis of common diseases. Numerous efforts were made to screen the human genome for TB susceptibility by linkage mapping. A large number of candidate-based association studies of TB were performed to examine the association of predicted functional DNA variations in candidate genes. Recently, the first genome-wide association study (GWAS) on TB was reported. The GWAS is a proof-of-principle evidence which justifies the genetic approach to understand TB. Further hypothesis-free efforts on TB research may renovate the traditional idea of TB genetic susceptibility as none of the candidate genes with important roles in containing Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MTB) infection was identified of association with active TB, while the TB-associated loci in the GWAS harbors no gene with function in MTB infection. PMID:21179108

  3. A New BSCS Project: Human Genetics Education for High School.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Biological Sciences Curriculum Study Journal, 1980

    1980-01-01

    Described is the BSCS Center for Education in Human and Medical Genetics, established to design, develop, and evaluate an instructional module in human genetics for high school students. This module will be a self-contained curricular program and will provide individualized open-ended experiences which present basic genetics content in the context…

  4. Genetic Testing and Its Implications: Human Genetics Researchers Grapple with Ethical Issues.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rabino, Isaac

    2003-01-01

    Contributes systematic data on the attitudes of scientific experts who engage in human genetics research about the pros, cons, and ethical implications of genetic testing. Finds that they are highly supportive of voluntary testing and the right to know one's genetic heritage. Calls for greater genetic literacy. (Contains 87 references.) (Author/NB)

  5. Variation and genetic control of gene expression in primary immunocytes across inbred mouse strains.

    PubMed

    Mostafavi, Sara; Ortiz-Lopez, Adriana; Bogue, Molly A; Hattori, Kimie; Pop, Cristina; Koller, Daphne; Mathis, Diane; Benoist, Christophe

    2014-11-01

    To determine the breadth and underpinning of changes in immunocyte gene expression due to genetic variation in mice, we performed, as part of the Immunological Genome Project, gene expression profiling for CD4(+) T cells and neutrophils purified from 39 inbred strains of the Mouse Phenome Database. Considering both cell types, a large number of transcripts showed significant variation across the inbred strains, with 22% of the transcriptome varying by 2-fold or more. These included 119 loci with apparent complete loss of function, where the corresponding transcript was not expressed in some of the strains, representing a useful resource of "natural knockouts." We identified 1222 cis-expression quantitative trait loci (cis-eQTL) that control some of this variation. Most (60%) cis-eQTLs were shared between T cells and neutrophils, but a significant portion uniquely impacted one of the cell types, suggesting cell type-specific regulatory mechanisms. Using a conditional regression algorithm, we predicted regulatory interactions between transcription factors and potential targets, and we demonstrated that these predictions overlap with regulatory interactions inferred from transcriptional changes during immunocyte differentiation. Finally, comparison of these and parallel data from CD4(+) T cells of healthy humans demonstrated intriguing similarities in variability of a gene's expression: the most variable genes tended to be the same in both species, and there was an overlap in genes subject to strong cis-acting genetic variants. We speculate that this "conservation of variation" reflects a differential constraint on intraspecies variation in expression levels of different genes, either through lower pressure for some genes, or by favoring variability for others. PMID:25267973

  6. Os incae: variation in frequency in major human population groups

    PubMed Central

    HANIHARA, TSUNEHIKO; ISHIDA, HAJIME

    2001-01-01

    The variation in frequency of the Inca bone was examined in major human populations around the world. The New World populations have generally high frequencies of the Inca bone, whereas lower frequencies occur in northeast Asians and Australians. Tibetan/Nepalese and Assam/Sikkim populations in northeast India have more Inca bones than do neighbouring populations. Among modern populations originally derived from eastern Asian population stock, the frequencies are highest in some of the marginal isolated groups. In Central and West Asia as well as in Europe, frequency of the Inca bone is relatively low. The incidence of the complete Inca bone is, moreover, very low in the western hemisphere of the Old World except for Subsaharan Africa. Subsaharan Africans show as a whole a second peak in the occurrence of the Inca bone. Geographical and ethnographical patterns of the frequency variation of the Inca bone found in this study indicate that the possible genetic background for the occurrence of this bone cannot be completely excluded. Relatively high frequencies of the Inca bone in Subsaharan Africans indicate that this trait is not a uniquely eastern Asian regional character. PMID:11273039

  7. Anthrax Susceptibility: Human Genetic Polymorphisms Modulating ANTXR2 Expression

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Zhang; Zhang, Yan; Shi, Minglei; Ye, Bingyu; Shen, Wenlong; Li, Ping; Xing, Lingyue; Zhang, Xiaopeng; Hou, Lihua; Xu, Junjie; Zhao, Zhihu; Chen, Wei

    2015-01-01

    Anthrax toxin causes anthrax pathogenesis and expression levels of ANTXR2 (anthrax toxin receptor 2) are strongly correlated with anthrax toxin susceptibility. Previous studies found that ANTXR2 transcript abundance varies considerably in individuals of different ethnic/geographical groups, but no eQTLs (expression quantitative trait loci) have been identified. By using 3C (chromatin conformation capture), CRISPR-mediated genomic deletion and dual-luciferase reporter assay, gene loci containing cis-regulatory elements of ANTXR2 were localized. Two SNPs (single nucleotide polymorphism) at the conserved CREB-binding motif, rs13140055 and rs80314910 in the promoter region of the gene, modulating ANTXR2 promoter activity were identified. Combining these two regulatory SNPs with a previously reported SNP, rs12647691, for the first time, a statistically significant correlation between human genetic variations and anthrax toxin sensitivity was observed. These findings further our understanding of human variability in ANTXR2 expression and anthrax toxin susceptibility. PMID:26703731

  8. Anthrax Susceptibility: Human Genetic Polymorphisms Modulating ANTXR2 Expression.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Zhang; Zhang, Yan; Shi, Minglei; Ye, Bingyu; Shen, Wenlong; Li, Ping; Xing, Lingyue; Zhang, Xiaopeng; Hou, Lihua; Xu, Junjie; Zhao, Zhihu; Chen, Wei

    2016-01-01

    Anthrax toxin causes anthrax pathogenesis and expression levels of ANTXR2 (anthrax toxin receptor 2) are strongly correlated with anthrax toxin susceptibility. Previous studies found that ANTXR2 transcript abundance varies considerably in individuals of different ethnic/geographical groups, but no eQTLs (expression quantitative trait loci) have been identified. By using 3C (chromatin conformation capture), CRISPR-mediated genomic deletion and dual-luciferase reporter assay, gene loci containing cis-regulatory elements of ANTXR2 were localized. Two SNPs (single nucleotide polymorphism) at the conserved CREB-binding motif, rs13140055 and rs80314910 in the promoter region of the gene, modulating ANTXR2 promoter activity were identified. Combining these two regulatory SNPs with a previously reported SNP, rs12647691, for the first time, a statistically significant correlation between human genetic variations and anthrax toxin sensitivity was observed. These findings further our understanding of human variability in ANTXR2 expression and anthrax toxin susceptibility. PMID:26703731

  9. The Admixture Structure and Genetic Variation of the Archipelago of Cape Verde and Its Implications for Admixture Mapping Studies

    PubMed Central

    Beleza, Sandra; Campos, Joana; Lopes, Jailson; Araújo, Isabel Inês; Hoppfer Almada, Ana; e Silva, António Correia; Parra, Esteban J.; Rocha, Jorge

    2012-01-01

    Recently admixed populations offer unique opportunities for studying human history and for elucidating the genetic basis of complex traits that differ in prevalence between human populations. Historical records, classical protein markers, and preliminary genetic data indicate that the Cape Verde islands in West Africa are highly admixed and primarily descended from European males and African females. However, little is known about the variation in admixture levels, admixture dynamics and genetic diversity across the islands, or about the potential of Cape Verde for admixture mapping studies. We have performed a detailed analysis of phenotypic and genetic variation in Cape Verde based on objective skin color measurements, socio-economic status (SES) evaluations and data for 50 autosomal, 34 X-chromosome, and 21 non-recombinant Y-chromosome (NRY) markers in 845 individuals from six islands of the archipelago. We find extensive genetic admixture between European and African ancestral populations (mean West African ancestry = 0.57, sd = 0.08), with individual African ancestry proportions varying considerably among the islands. African ancestry proportions calculated with X and Y-chromosome markers confirm that the pattern of admixture has been sex-biased. The high-resolution NRY-STRs reveal additional patterns of variation among the islands that are most consistent with differentiation after admixture. The differences in the autosomal admixture proportions are clearly evident in the skin color distribution across the islands (Pearson r = 0.54, P-value<2e–16). Despite this strong correlation, there are significant interactions between SES and skin color that are independent of the relationship between skin color and genetic ancestry. The observed distributions of admixture, genetic variation and skin color and the relationship of skin color with SES relate to historical and social events taking place during the settlement history of Cape Verde, and have

  10. Performing monkeys of Bangladesh: characterizing their source and genetic variation.

    PubMed

    Hasan, M Kamrul; Feeroz, M Mostafa; Jones-Engel, Lisa; Engel, Gregory A; Akhtar, Sharmin; Kanthaswamy, Sree; Smith, David Glenn

    2016-04-01

    The acquisition and training of monkeys to perform is a centuries-old tradition in South Asia, resulting in a large number of rhesus macaques kept in captivity for this purpose. The performing monkeys are reportedly collected from free-ranging populations, and may escape from their owners or may be released into other populations. In order to determine whether this tradition involving the acquisition and movement of animals has influenced the population structure of free-ranging rhesus macaques in Bangladesh, we first characterized the source of these monkeys. Biological samples from 65 performing macaques collected between January 2010 and August 2013 were analyzed for genetic variation using 716 base pairs of mitochondrial DNA. Performing monkey sequences were compared with those of free-ranging rhesus macaque populations in Bangladesh, India and Myanmar. Forty-five haplotypes with 116 (16 %) polymorphic nucleotide sites were detected among the performing monkeys. As for the free-ranging rhesus population, most of the substitutions (89 %) were transitions, and no indels (insertion/deletion) were observed. The estimate of the mean number of pair-wise differences for the performing monkey population was 10.1264 ± 4.686, compared to 14.076 ± 6.363 for the free-ranging population. Fifteen free-ranging rhesus macaque populations were identified as the source of performing monkeys in Bangladesh; several of these populations were from areas where active provisioning has resulted in a large number of macaques. The collection of performing monkeys from India was also evident. PMID:26758818

  11. NAT2 genetic variations among South Indian populations.

    PubMed

    Lakkakula, Saikrishna; Mohan Pathapati, Ram; Chaubey, Gyaneshwer; Munirajan, Arasambattu Kannan; Lakkakula, Bhaskar Vks; Maram, Rajasekhar

    2014-01-01

    The N-acetyltransferases (NATs) are xenobiotic-metabolizing enzymes involved in the metabolism of drugs, environmental toxins and the aromatic amine carcinogens present in cigarette smoke. Genetic variations in NAT2 have long been recognized as the cause of variable enzymatic activity or stability, leading to slow or rapid acetylation. In the present study, we genotyped three single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) from the NAT2 gene (rs1799929, rs1799930 and rs1799931), using TaqMan allelic discrimination, among 212 individuals from six major South Indian populations and compared the results with other available Indian and worldwide data. All three of the markers followed Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium and were highly polymorphic in the studied populations. The constructed haplotypes showed a high level of heterozygosity. All of the populations in the present study commonly shared only four haplotypes out of the eight possible three-site haplotypes. The haplotypes exhibited fairly high frequencies across multiple populations, where three haplotypes were shared by all six populations with a cumulative frequency ranging from 88.2% (Madiga) to 97.0% (Balija). We also observed a tribal-specific haplotype. A strong linkage disequilibrium (LD) between rs1799929 and rs1799930 was consistent in all of the studied populations, with the exception of the Madiga. A comparison of the genomic regions 20-kb up- and downstream of rs1799930 in a large number of worldwide samples showed a strong LD of this SNP with another NAT2 SNP, rs1112005, among the majority of the populations. Moreover, our lifestyle test (hunter-gatherer versus agriculturist) in comparison with the NAT2 variant suggested that two of the studied populations (Balija and Madiga) have likely shifted their diet more recently. PMID:27081506

  12. GENETICS OF HUMAN AGE RELATED DISORDERS.

    PubMed

    Srivastava, I; Thukral, N; Hasija, Y

    2015-01-01

    Aging is an inevitable biological phenomenon. The incidence of age related disorders (ARDs) such as cardiovascular diseases, cancer, arthritis, dementia, osteoporosis, diabetes, neurodegenerative diseases increase rapidly with aging. ARDs are becoming a key social and economic trouble for the world's elderly population (above 60 years), which is expected to reach 2 billion by 2050. Advancement in understanding of genetic associations, particularly through genome wide association studies (GWAS), has revealed a substantial contribution of genes to human aging and ARDs. In this review, we have focused on the recent understanding of the extent to which genetic predisposition may influence the aging process. Further analysis of the genetic association studies through pathway analysis several genes associated with multiple ARDs have been highlighted such as apolipoprotein E (APOE), brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), cadherin 13 (CDH13), CDK5 regulatory subunit associated protein 1 (CDKAL-1), methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR), disrupted in schizophrenia 1 (DISC1), nitric oxide synthase 3 (NOS3), paraoxonase 1 (PON1), indicating that these genes could play a pivotal role in ARD causation. These genes were found to be significantly enriched in Jak-STAT signalling pathway, asthma and allograft rejection. Further, interleukin-6 (IL-6), insulin (INS), vascular endothelial growth factor A (VEGFA), estrogen receptor1 (ESR1), transforming growth factor, beta 1(TGFB1) and calmodulin 1 (CALM1) were found to be highly interconnected in network analysis. We believe that extensive research on the presence of common genetic variants among various ARDs may facilitate scientists to understand the biology behind ARDs causation. PMID:26856084

  13. Genetic variation in arthropod vectors of disease-causing organisms: obstacles and opportunities.

    PubMed

    Gooding, R H

    1996-07-01

    An overview of the genetic variation in arthropods that transmit pathogens to vertebrates is presented, emphasizing the genetics of vector-pathogen relationships and the biochemical genetics of vectors. Vector-pathogen interactions are reviewed briefly as a prelude to a discussion of the genetics of susceptibility and refractoriness in vectors. Susceptibility to pathogens is controlled by maternally inherited factors, sex-linked dominant alleles, and dominant and recessive autosomal genes. There is widespread interpopulation (including intercolony) and temporal variation in susceptibility to pathogens. The amount of biochemical genetic variation in vectors is similar to that found in other invertebrates. However, the amount varies widely among species, among populations within species, and temporally within populations. Biochemical genetic studies show that there is considerable genetic structuring of many vectors at the local, regional, and global levels. It is argued that genetic variation in vectors is critical in understanding vector-pathogen interactions and that genetic variation in vectors creates both obstacles to and opportunities for application of genetic techniques to the control of vectors. PMID:8809462

  14. Genetic variation in arthropod vectors of disease-causing organisms: obstacles and opportunities.

    PubMed Central

    Gooding, R H

    1996-01-01

    An overview of the genetic variation in arthropods that transmit pathogens to vertebrates is presented, emphasizing the genetics of vector-pathogen relationships and the biochemical genetics of vectors. Vector-pathogen interactions are reviewed briefly as a prelude to a discussion of the genetics of susceptibility and refractoriness in vectors. Susceptibility to pathogens is controlled by maternally inherited factors, sex-linked dominant alleles, and dominant and recessive autosomal genes. There is widespread interpopulation (including intercolony) and temporal variation in susceptibility to pathogens. The amount of biochemical genetic variation in vectors is similar to that found in other invertebrates. However, the amount varies widely among species, among populations within species, and temporally within populations. Biochemical genetic studies show that there is considerable genetic structuring of many vectors at the local, regional, and global levels. It is argued that genetic variation in vectors is critical in understanding vector-pathogen interactions and that genetic variation in vectors creates both obstacles to and opportunities for application of genetic techniques to the control of vectors. PMID:8809462

  15. Genetic Variation among Staphylococcus aureus Strains from Norwegian Bulk Milk

    PubMed Central

    Jørgensen, H. J.; Mørk, T.; Caugant, D. A.; Kearns, A.; Rørvik, L. M.

    2005-01-01

    Strains of Staphylococcus aureus obtained from bovine (n = 117) and caprine (n = 114) bulk milk were characterized and compared with S. aureus strains from raw-milk products (n = 27), bovine mastitis specimens (n = 9), and human blood cultures (n = 39). All isolates were typed by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE). In addition, subsets of isolates were characterized using multilocus sequence typing (MLST), multiplex PCR (m-PCR) for genes encoding nine of the staphylococcal enterotoxins (SE), and the cloverleaf method for penicillin resistance. A variety of genotypes were observed, and greater genetic diversity was found among bovine than caprine bulk milk isolates. Certain genotypes, with a wide geographic distribution, were common to bovine and caprine bulk milk and may represent ruminant-specialized S. aureus. Isolates with genotypes indistinguishable from those of strains from ruminant mastitis were frequently found in bulk milk, and strains with genotypes indistinguishable from those from bulk milk were observed in raw-milk products. This indicates that S. aureus from infected udders may contaminate bulk milk and, subsequently, raw-milk products. Human blood culture isolates were diverse and differed from isolates from other sources. Genotyping by PFGE, MLST, and m-PCR for SE genes largely corresponded. In general, isolates with indistinguishable PFGE banding patterns had the same SE gene profile and isolates with identical SE gene profiles were placed together in PFGE clusters. Phylogenetic analyses agreed with the division of MLST sequence types into clonal complexes, and isolates within the same clonal complex had the same SE gene profile. Furthermore, isolates within PFGE clusters generally belonged to the same clonal complex. PMID:16332822

  16. Genetics of human sensitivity to ultraviolet radiation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cleaver, James E.

    1994-07-01

    the major human health effects of solar and artificial UV light occur from the UVB and UVC wavelength ranges and involve a variety of short-term and long-term deleterious changes to the skin and eyes. the more important initial damage to cellular macromolecules involves dimerization of adjacent pyrimidines in DNA to produce cyclobutane pyrimidine dimes, (6-4) pyrimidine- pyrimidone, and (6-4) dewar photoproducts. these photoproducts can be repaired by a genetically regulated enzyme system (nucleotide excision repair) which removes oligonucleotides 29-30 nucleotides long that contain the photoproducts, and synthesizes replacement patches. At least a dozen gene products are involved in the process of recognizing photoproducts in DNA, altering local DNA helicity and cleaving the polynucleotide chain at defined positions either side of a photoproduct. Hereditary mutations in many of these genes are recognized in the human genetic disorders xeroderma pigmentosum (XP), Cockayne syndrome (CS), and trichothiodystrophy (TTD). Several of the gene products have other functions involving the regulation of gene transcription which accounts for the complex clinical presentation of repair deficient diseases that involve sensitivity of the skin and eyes to UV light, increased solar carcinogenesis (in XP), demyelination, and ganglial calcification (in CS), hair abnormalities (in TTD), and developmental and neurological abnormalities

  17. Child Development and Structural Variation in the Human Genome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zhang, Ying; Haraksingh, Rajini; Grubert, Fabian; Abyzov, Alexej; Gerstein, Mark; Weissman, Sherman; Urban, Alexander E.

    2013-01-01

    Structural variation of the human genome sequence is the insertion, deletion, or rearrangement of stretches of DNA sequence sized from around 1,000 to millions of base pairs. Over the past few years, structural variation has been shown to be far more common in human genomes than previously thought. Very little is currently known about the effects…

  18. Human Genetics and Islam: Scientific and Medical Aspects

    PubMed Central

    Ghareeb, Bilal A.A.

    2011-01-01

    Objective: To relate diverse aspects of genetics and its applications to concepts in the Glorious Qur’an and the ḥadīth. Study Design: The author compared passages from the Glorious Qur’an and ḥadīth with modern concepts in genetics, such as recessive inheritance, genetic counseling, genetic variation, cytoplasmic inheritance, sex chromosomes, genetics-environment interactions, gender determination, and the hypothesis of “pairing in the universe.” Conclusions: A fresh understanding of Islamic scripture reveals references to principles of genetics that predate contemporary discoveries. This highlights the need for further exploration of possible links between science and religion. PMID:23610491

  19. CES1 genetic variation affects the activation of angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors.

    PubMed

    Wang, X; Wang, G; Shi, J; Aa, J; Comas, R; Liang, Y; Zhu, H-J

    2016-06-01

    The aim of the study was to determine the effect of carboxylesterase 1 (CES1) genetic variation on the activation of angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor (ACEI) prodrugs. In vitro incubation study of human liver, intestine and kidney s9 fractions demonstrated that the ACEI prodrugs enalapril, ramipril, perindopril, moexipril and fosinopril are selectively activated by CES1 in the liver. The impact of CES1/CES1VAR and CES1P1/CES1P1VAR genotypes and diplotypes on CES1 expression and activity on enalapril activation was investigated in 102 normal human liver samples. Neither the genotypes nor the diplotypes affected hepatic CES1 expression and activity. Moreover, among several CES1 nonsynonymous variants studied in transfected cell lines, the G143E (rs71647871) was a loss-of-function variant for the activation of all ACEIs tested. The CES1 activity on enalapril activation in human livers with the 143G/E genotype was approximately one-third of that carrying the 143G/G. Thus, some functional CES1 genetic variants (for example, G143E) may impair ACEI activation, and consequently affect therapeutic outcomes of ACEI prodrugs. PMID:26076923

  20. Genetic variation in COMT activity impacts learning and dopamine release capacity in the striatum

    PubMed Central

    Simpson, Eleanor H.; Morud, Julia; Winiger, Vanessa; Biezonski, Dominik; Zhu, Judy P.; Bach, Mary Elizabeth; Malleret, Gael; Polan, H. Jonathan; Ng-Evans, Scott; Phillips, Paul E.M.; Kellendonk, Christoph; Kandel, Eric R.

    2014-01-01

    A common genetic polymorphism that results in increased activity of the dopamine regulating enzyme COMT (the COMT Val158 allele) has been found to associate with poorer cognitive performance and increased susceptibility to develop psychiatric disorders. It is generally assumed that this increase in COMT activity influences cognitive function and psychiatric disease risk by increasing dopamine turnover in cortical synapses, though this cannot be directly measured in humans. Here we explore a novel transgenic mouse model of increased COMT activity, equivalent to the relative increase in activity observed with the human COMT Val158 allele. By performing an extensive battery of behavioral tests, we found that COMT overexpressing mice (COMT-OE mice) exhibit cognitive deficits selectively in the domains that are affected by the COMT Val158 allele, stimulus–response learning and working memory, functionally validating our model of increased COMT activity. Although we detected no changes in the level of markers for dopamine synthesis and dopamine transport, we found that COMT-OE mice display an increase in dopamine release capacity in the striatum. This result suggests that increased COMT activity may not only affect dopamine signaling by enhancing synaptic clearance in the cortex, but may also cause changes in presynaptic dopamine function in the striatum. These changes may underlie the behavioral deficits observed in the mice and might also play a role in the cognitive deficits and increased psychiatric disease risk associated with genetic variation in COMT activity in humans. PMID:24639487

  1. Medical genetics

    SciTech Connect

    Jorde, L.B.; Carey, J.C.; White, R.L.

    1995-10-01

    This book on the subject of medical genetics is a textbook aimed at a very broad audience: principally, medical students, nursing students, graduate, and undergraduate students. The book is actually a primer of general genetics as applied to humans and provides a well-balanced introduction to the scientific and clinical basis of human genetics. The twelve chapters include: Introduction, Basic Cell Biology, Genetic Variation, Autosomal Dominant and Recessive Inheritance, Sex-linked and Mitochondrial Inheritance, Clinical Cytogenetics, Gene Mapping, Immunogenetics, Cancer Genetics, Multifactorial Inheritance and Common Disease, Genetic Screening, Genetic Diagnosis and Gene Therapy, and Clinical Genetics and Genetic Counseling.

  2. Estimating Genetic and Maternal Effects Determining Variation in Immune Function of a Mixed-Mating Snail

    PubMed Central

    Seppälä, Otto; Langeloh, Laura

    2016-01-01

    Evolution of host defenses such as immune function requires heritable genetic variation in them. However, also non-genetic maternal effects can contribute to phenotypic variation, thus being an alternative target for natural selection. We investigated the role of individuals’ genetic background and maternal effects in determining immune defense traits (phenoloxidase and antibacterial activity of hemolymph), as well as in survival and growth, in the simultaneously hermaphroditic snail Lymnaea stagnalis. We utilized the mixed mating system of this species by producing full-sib families in which each parental snail had produced offspring as both a dam and as a sire, and tested whether genetic background (family) and non-genetic maternal effects (dam nested within family) explain trait variation. Immune defense traits and growth were affected solely by individuals’ genetic background. Survival of snails did not show family-level variation. Additionally, some snails were produced through self-fertilization. They showed reduced growth and survival suggesting recessive load or overdominance. Immune defense traits did not respond to inbreeding. Our results suggest that the variation in snail immune function and growth was due to genetic differences. Since immune traits did not respond to inbreeding, this variation is most likely due to additive or epistatic genetic variance. PMID:27551822

  3. Additive genetic variation and evolvability of a multivariate trait can be increased by epistatic gene action.

    PubMed

    Griswold, Cortland K

    2015-12-21

    Epistatic gene action occurs when mutations or alleles interact to produce a phenotype. Theoretically and empirically it is of interest to know whether gene interactions can facilitate the evolution of diversity. In this paper, we explore how epistatic gene action affects the additive genetic component or heritable component of multivariate trait variation, as well as how epistatic gene action affects the evolvability of multivariate traits. The analysis involves a sexually reproducing and recombining population. Our results indicate that under stabilizing selection conditions a population with a mixed additive and epistatic genetic architecture can have greater multivariate additive genetic variation and evolvability than a population with a purely additive genetic architecture. That greater multivariate additive genetic variation can occur with epistasis is in contrast to previous theory that indicated univariate additive genetic variation is decreased with epistasis under stabilizing selection conditions. In a multivariate setting, epistasis leads to less relative covariance among individuals in their genotypic, as well as their breeding values, which facilitates the maintenance of additive genetic variation and increases a population׳s evolvability. Our analysis involves linking the combinatorial nature of epistatic genetic effects to the ancestral graph structure of a population to provide insight into the consequences of epistasis on multivariate trait variation and evolution. PMID:26431770

  4. Estimating Genetic and Maternal Effects Determining Variation in Immune Function of a Mixed-Mating Snail.

    PubMed

    Seppälä, Otto; Langeloh, Laura

    2016-01-01

    Evolution of host defenses such as immune function requires heritable genetic variation in them. However, also non-genetic maternal effects can contribute to phenotypic variation, thus being an alternative target for natural selection. We investigated the role of individuals' genetic background and maternal effects in determining immune defense traits (phenoloxidase and antibacterial activity of hemolymph), as well as in survival and growth, in the simultaneously hermaphroditic snail Lymnaea stagnalis. We utilized the mixed mating system of this species by producing full-sib families in which each parental snail had produced offspring as both a dam and as a sire, and tested whether genetic background (family) and non-genetic maternal effects (dam nested within family) explain trait variation. Immune defense traits and growth were affected solely by individuals' genetic background. Survival of snails did not show family-level variation. Additionally, some snails were produced through self-fertilization. They showed reduced growth and survival suggesting recessive load or overdominance. Immune defense traits did not respond to inbreeding. Our results suggest that the variation in snail immune function and growth was due to genetic differences. Since immune traits did not respond to inbreeding, this variation is most likely due to additive or epistatic genetic variance. PMID:27551822

  5. Genetic variation, simplicity, and evolutionary constraints for function-valued traits.

    PubMed

    Kingsolver, Joel G; Heckman, Nancy; Zhang, Jonathan; Carter, Patrick A; Knies, Jennifer L; Stinchcombe, John R; Meyer, Karin

    2015-06-01

    Understanding the patterns of genetic variation and constraint for continuous reaction norms, growth trajectories, and other function-valued traits is challenging. We describe and illustrate a recent analytical method, simple basis analysis (SBA), that uses the genetic variance-covariance (G) matrix to identify "simple" directions of genetic variation and genetic constraints that have straightforward biological interpretations. We discuss the parallels between the eigenvectors (principal components) identified by principal components analysis (PCA) and the simple basis (SB) vectors identified by SBA. We apply these methods to estimated G matrices obtained from 10 studies of thermal performance curves and growth curves. Our results suggest that variation in overall size across all ages represented most of the genetic variance in growth curves. In contrast, variation in overall performance across all temperatures represented less than one-third of the genetic variance in thermal performance curves in all cases, and genetic trade-offs between performance at higher versus lower temperatures were often important. The analyses also identify potential genetic constraints on patterns of early and later growth in growth curves. We suggest that SBA can be a useful complement or alternative to PCA for identifying biologically interpretable directions of genetic variation and constraint in function-valued traits. PMID:25996868

  6. Effects of founding genetic variation on adaptation to a novel resource.

    PubMed

    Agashe, Deepa; Falk, Jay J; Bolnick, Daniel I

    2011-09-01

    Population genetic theory predicts that adaptation in novel environments is enhanced by genetic variation for fitness. However, theory also predicts that under strong selection, demographic stochasticity can drive populations to extinction before they can adapt. We exposed wheat-adapted populations of the flour beetle (Tribolium castaneum) to a novel suboptimal corn resource, to test the effects of founding genetic variation on population decline and subsequent extinction or adaptation. As previously reported, genetically diverse populations were less likely to go extinct. Here, we show that among surviving populations, genetically diverse groups recovered faster after the initial population decline. Within two years, surviving populations significantly increased their fitness on corn via increased fecundity, increased egg survival, faster larval development, and higher rate of egg cannibalism. However, founding genetic variation only enhanced the increase in fecundity, despite existing genetic variation-and apparent lack of trade-offs-for egg survival and larval development time. Thus, during adaptation to novel habitats the positive impact of genetic variation may be restricted to only a few traits, although change in many life-history traits may be necessary to avoid extinction. Despite severe initial maladaptation and low population size, genetic diversity can thus overcome the predicted high extinction risk in new habitats. PMID:21884051

  7. Phenotypic and Genetic Variations in Obligate Parthenogenetic Populations of Eriosoma lanigerum Hausmann (Hemiptera: Aphididae).

    PubMed

    Ruiz-Montoya, L; Zúñiga, G; Cisneros, R; Salinas-Moreno, Y; Peña-Martínez, R; Machkour-M'Rabet, S

    2015-12-01

    The study of phenotypic and genetic variation of obligate parthenogenetic organisms contributes to an understanding of evolution in the absence of genetic variation produced by sexual reproduction. Eriosoma lanigerum Hausmann undergoes obligate parthenogenesis in Mexico City, Mexico, due to the unavailability of the host plants required for sexual reproduction. We analysed the phenotypic and genetic variation of E. lanigerum in relation to the dry and wet season and plant phenology. Aphids were collected on two occasions per season on a secondary host plant, Pyracantha koidzumii, at five different sites in the southern area of Mexico City, Mexico. Thirteen morphological characteristics were measured from 147 to 276 individuals per site and per season. A multivariate analysis of variance was performed to test the effect of the season, site and their interaction on morphological traits. Morphological variation was summarised using a principal component analysis. Genetic variation was described using six enzymatic loci, four of which were polymorphic. Our study showed that the site and season has a significant effect on morphological trait variation. The largest aphids were recorded during cold temperatures with low relative humidity and when the plant was at the end of the fruiting period. The mean genetic diversity was low (mean H e =  .161), and populations were genetically structured by season and site. Morphological and genetic variations appear to be associated with environmental factors that directly affect aphid development and/or indirectly by host plant phenology. PMID:26272633

  8. Genetic and phenotypic variations of inherited retinal diseases in dogs: the power of within- and across-breed studies

    PubMed Central

    Acland, Gregory M.

    2014-01-01

    Considerable clinical and molecular variations have been known in retinal blinding diseases in man and also in dogs. Different forms of retinal diseases occur in specific breed(s) caused by mutations segregating within each isolated breeding population. While molecular studies to find genes and mutations underlying retinal diseases in dogs have benefited largely from the phenotypic and genetic uniformity within a breed, within- and across-breed variations have often played a key role in elucidating the molecular basis. The increasing knowledge of phenotypic, allelic, and genetic heterogeneities in canine retinal degeneration has shown that the overall picture is rather more complicated than initially thought. Over the past 20 years, various approaches have been developed and tested to search for genes and mutations underlying genetic traits in dogs, depending on the availability of genetic tools and sample resources. Candidate gene, linkage analysis, and genome-wide association studies have so far identified 24 mutations in 18 genes underlying retinal diseases in at least 58 dog breeds. Many of these genes have been associated with retinal diseases in humans, thus providing opportunities to study the role in pathogenesis and in normal vision. Application in therapeutic interventions such as gene therapy has proven successful initially in a naturally occurring dog model followed by trials in human patients. Other genes whose human homologs have not been associated with retinal diseases are potential candidates to explain equivalent human diseases and contribute to the understanding of their function in vision. PMID:22065099

  9. Genetic Variation and Population Genetics of Taenia saginata in North and Northeast Thailand in relation to Taenia asiatica.

    PubMed

    Anantaphruti, Malinee; Thaenkham, Urusa; Kusolsuk, Teera; Maipanich, Wanna; Saguankiat, Surapol; Pubampen, Somjit; Phuphisut, Orawan

    2013-01-01

    Taenia saginata is the most common human Taenia in Thailand. By cox1 sequences, 73 isolates from four localities in north and northeast were differentiated into 14 haplotypes, 11 variation sites and haplotype diversity of 0.683. Among 14 haplotypes, haplotype A was the major (52.1%), followed by haplotype B (21.9%). Clustering diagram of Thai and GenBank sequences indicated mixed phylogeny among localities. By MJ analysis, haplotype clustering relationships showed paired-stars-like network, having two main cores surrounded by minor haplotypes. Tajima's D values were significantly negative in T. saginata world population, suggesting population expansion. Significant Fu's F s values in Thai, as well as world population, also indicate that population is expanding and may be hitchhiking as part of selective sweep. Haplotype B and its dispersion were only found in populations from Thailand. Haplotype B may evolve and ultimately become an ancestor of future populations in Thailand. Haplotype A seems to be dispersion haplotype, not just in Thailand, but worldwide. High genetic T. saginata intraspecies divergence was found, in contrast to its sister species, T. asiatica; among 30 samples from seven countries, its haplotype diversity was 0.067, while only 2 haplotypes were revealed. This extremely low intraspecific variation suggests that T. asiatica could be an endangered species. PMID:23864933

  10. The Distribution of Genetic Variation in Cultivated Tomato

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cultivated tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.) is known to have a narrow genetic base. COSII, EST-based, and several loci related to fruit quality traits were resequenced in a diverse panel of 30 Plant Genetic Resources Unit (PGRU) tomato accessions, line TA496, and Solanum peruvianum accession G 32591...

  11. Genetic variation in cortico-amygdala serotonin function and risk for stress-related disease

    PubMed Central

    Holmes, Andrew

    2008-01-01

    The serotonin system is strongly implicated in the pathophysiology and therapeutic alleviation of stress-related disorders such as anxiety and depression. Serotonergic modulation of the acute response to stress and the adaptation to chronic stress is mediated by a myriad of molecules controlling serotonin neuron development (Pet-1), synthesis (tryptophan hydroxylase 1 and 2 isozymes), packaging (vesicular monoamine transporter 2), actions at presynaptic and postsynaptic receptors (5-HT1A, 5-HT1B, 5-HT2A, 5-HT2C, 5-HT3A, 5-HT4, 5-HT5A, 5-HT6, 5-HT7), reuptake (serotonin transporter), and degradation (monoamine oxidase A). A growing body of evidence from preclinical rodents models, and especially genetically modified mice and inbred mouse strains, has provided significant insight into how genetic variation in these molecules can affect the development and function of a key neural circuit between the dorsal raphe nucleus, medial prefrontal cortex and amygdala. By extension, such variation is hypothesized to have a major influence on individual differences in the stress response and risk for stress-related disease in humans. The current article provides an update on this rapidly evolving field of research. PMID:18439676

  12. Genetic variation, inbreeding and chemical exposure—combined effects in wildlife and critical considerations for ecotoxicology

    PubMed Central

    Brown, A. Ross; Hosken, David J.; Balloux, François; Bickley, Lisa K.; LePage, Gareth; Owen, Stewart F.; Hetheridge, Malcolm J.; Tyler, Charles R.

    2009-01-01

    Exposure to environmental chemicals can have negative consequences for wildlife and even cause localized population extinctions. Resistance to chemical stress, however, can evolve and the mechanisms include desensitized target sites, reduced chemical uptake and increased metabolic detoxification and sequestration. Chemical resistance in wildlife populations can also arise independently of exposure and may be spread by gene flow between populations. Inbreeding—matings between closely related individuals—can have negative fitness consequences for natural populations, and there is evidence of inbreeding depression in many wildlife populations. In some cases, reduced fitness in inbred populations has been shown to be exacerbated under chemical stress. In chemical testing, both inbred and outbred laboratory animals are used and for human safety assessments, iso-genic strains (virtual clones) of mice and rats are often employed that reduce response variation, the number of animals used and associated costs. In contrast, for environmental risk assessment, strains of animals are often used that have been selectively bred to maintain heterozygosity, with the assumption that they are better able to predict adverse effects in wild, genetically variable, animals. This may not necessarily be the case however, as one outbred strain may not be representative of another or of a wild population. In this paper, we critically discuss relationships between genetic variation, inbreeding and chemical effects with the intention of seeking to support more effective chemical testing for the protection of wildlife. PMID:19833649

  13. The genetic basis of natural variation in mushroom body size in Drosophila melanogaster

    PubMed Central

    Zwarts, Liesbeth; Vanden Broeck, Lies; Cappuyns, Elisa; Ayroles, Julien F.; Magwire, Michael M.; Vulsteke, Veerle; Clements, Jason; Mackay, Trudy F. C.; Callaerts, Patrick

    2015-01-01

    Genetic variation in brain size may provide the basis for the evolution of the brain and complex behaviours. The genetic substrate and the selective pressures acting on brain size are poorly understood. Here we use the Drosophila Genetic Reference Panel to map polymorphic variants affecting natural variation in mushroom body morphology. We identify 139 genes and 39 transcription factors and confirm effects on development and adult plasticity. We show correlations between morphology and aggression, sleep and lifespan. We propose that natural variation in adult brain size is controlled by interaction of the environment with gene networks controlling development and plasticity. PMID:26656654

  14. Mouse Genetic Models of Human Brain Disorders.

    PubMed

    Leung, Celeste; Jia, Zhengping

    2016-01-01

    Over the past three decades, genetic manipulations in mice have been used in neuroscience as a major approach to investigate the in vivo function of genes and their alterations. In particular, gene targeting techniques using embryonic stem cells have revolutionized the field of mammalian genetics and have been at the forefront in the generation of numerous mouse models of human brain disorders. In this review, we will first examine childhood developmental disorders such as autism, intellectual disability, Fragile X syndrome, and Williams-Beuren syndrome. We will then explore psychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia and lastly, neurodegenerative disorders including Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease. We will outline the creation of these mouse models that range from single gene deletions, subtle point mutations to multi-gene manipulations, and discuss the key behavioral phenotypes of these mice. Ultimately, the analysis of the models outlined in this review will enhance our understanding of the in vivo role and underlying mechanisms of disease-related genes in both normal brain function and brain disorders, and provide potential therapeutic targets and strategies to prevent and treat these diseases. PMID:27047540

  15. Mouse Genetic Models of Human Brain Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Leung, Celeste; Jia, Zhengping

    2016-01-01

    Over the past three decades, genetic manipulations in mice have been used in neuroscience as a major approach to investigate the in vivo function of genes and their alterations. In particular, gene targeting techniques using embryonic stem cells have revolutionized the field of mammalian genetics and have been at the forefront in the generation of numerous mouse models of human brain disorders. In this review, we will first examine childhood developmental disorders such as autism, intellectual disability, Fragile X syndrome, and Williams-Beuren syndrome. We will then explore psychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia and lastly, neurodegenerative disorders including Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. We will outline the creation of these mouse models that range from single gene deletions, subtle point mutations to multi-gene manipulations, and discuss the key behavioral phenotypes of these mice. Ultimately, the analysis of the models outlined in this review will enhance our understanding of the in vivo role and underlying mechanisms of disease-related genes in both normal brain function and brain disorders, and provide potential therapeutic targets and strategies to prevent and treat these diseases. PMID:27047540

  16. Molecular genetics of human myopia: an update.

    PubMed

    Young, Terri L

    2009-01-01

    Myopia, or nearsightedness, is the most common human eye disorder in the world, and is a significant global public health concern. Along with cataract, macular degeneration, infectious disease, and vitamin A deficiency, myopia is one of the most important causes of visual impairment worldwide. Severe or high-grade myopia is a leading cause of blindness because of its associated ocular morbidities of retinal detachment, macular choroidal degeneration, premature cataract, and glaucoma. Ample evidence documents the heritability of the non-syndromic forms of this condition, especially for high-grade myopia, commonly referred to as myopic spherical refractive power of 5 to 6 diopters or higher. Multiple high-grade myopia genetic loci have been identified, and confirmatory studies identifying high-grade and moderate myopia loci have also occurred. In general, myopia susceptibility genes are unknown with few association studies performed, and without confirmation in other research laboratories or testing of separate patient cohorts. PMID:19104467

  17. Whole-Genome Sequencing Reveals Genetic Variation in the Asian House Rat.

    PubMed

    Teng, Huajing; Zhang, Yaohua; Shi, Chengmin; Mao, Fengbiao; Hou, Lingling; Guo, Hongling; Sun, Zhongsheng; Zhang, Jianxu

    2016-01-01

    Whole-genome sequencing of wild-derived rat species can provide novel genomic resources, which may help decipher the genetics underlying complex phenotypes. As a notorious pest, reservoir of human pathogens, and colonizer, the Asian house rat, Rattus tanezumi, is successfully adapted to its habitat. However, little is known regarding genetic variation in this species. In this study, we identified over 41,000,000 single-nucleotide polymorphisms, plus insertions and deletions, through whole-genome sequencing and bioinformatics analyses. Moreover, we identified over 12,000 structural variants, including 143 chromosomal inversions. Further functional analyses revealed several fixed nonsense mutations associated with infection and immunity-related adaptations, and a number of fixed missense mutations that may be related to anticoagulant resistance. A genome-wide scan for loci under selection identified various genes related to neural activity. Our whole-genome sequencing data provide a genomic resource for future genetic studies of the Asian house rat species and have the potential to facilitate understanding of the molecular adaptations of rats to their ecological niches. PMID:27172215

  18. Whole-Genome Sequencing Reveals Genetic Variation in the Asian House Rat

    PubMed Central

    Teng, Huajing; Zhang, Yaohua; Shi, Chengmin; Mao, Fengbiao; Hou, Lingling; Guo, Hongling; Sun, Zhongsheng; Zhang, Jianxu

    2016-01-01

    Whole-genome sequencing of wild-derived rat species can provide novel genomic resources, which may help decipher the genetics underlying complex phenotypes. As a notorious pest, reservoir of human pathogens, and colonizer, the Asian house rat, Rattus tanezumi, is successfully adapted to its habitat. However, little is known regarding genetic variation in this species. In this study, we identified over 41,000,000 single-nucleotide polymorphisms, plus insertions and deletions, through whole-genome sequencing and bioinformatics analyses. Moreover, we identified over 12,000 structural variants, including 143 chromosomal inversions. Further functional analyses revealed several fixed nonsense mutations associated with infection and immunity-related adaptations, and a number of fixed missense mutations that may be related to anticoagulant resistance. A genome-wide scan for loci under selection identified various genes related to neural activity. Our whole-genome sequencing data provide a genomic resource for future genetic studies of the Asian house rat species and have the potential to facilitate understanding of the molecular adaptations of rats to their ecological niches. PMID:27172215

  19. Global genetic variation at OAS1 provides evidence of archaic admixture in Melanesian populations.

    PubMed

    Mendez, Fernando L; Watkins, Joseph C; Hammer, Michael F

    2012-06-01

    Recent analysis of DNA extracted from two Eurasian forms of archaic human shows that more genetic variants are shared with humans currently living in Eurasia than with anatomically modern humans in sub-Saharan Africa. Although these genome-wide average measures of genetic similarity are consistent with the hypothesis of archaic admixture in Eurasia, analyses of individual loci exhibiting the signal of archaic introgression are needed to test alternative hypotheses and investigate the admixture process. Here, we provide a detailed sequence analysis of the innate immune gene OAS1, a locus with a divergent Melanesian haplotype that is very similar to the Denisova sequence from the Altai region of Siberia. We resequenced a 7-kb region encompassing the OAS1 gene in 88 individuals from six Old World populations (San, Biaka, Mandenka, French Basque, Han Chinese, and Papua New Guineans) and discovered previously unknown and ancient genetic variation. The 5' region of this gene has unusual patterns of diversity, including 1) higher levels of nucleotide diversity in Papuans than in sub-Saharan Africans, 2) very deep ancestry with an estimated time to the most recent common ancestor of >3 myr, and 3) a basal branching pattern with Papuan individuals on either side of the rooted network. A global geographic survey of >1,500 individuals showed that the divergent Papuan haplotype is nearly restricted to populations from eastern Indonesia and Melanesia. Polymorphic sites within this haplotype are shared with the draft Denisova genome over a span of ∼90 kb and are associated with an extended block of linkage disequilibrium, supporting the hypothesis that this haplotype introgressed from an archaic source that likely lived in Eurasia. PMID:22319157

  20. Catch Me if You Can: Adaptation from Standing Genetic Variation to a Moving Phenotypic Optimum

    PubMed Central

    Matuszewski, Sebastian; Hermisson, Joachim; Kopp, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Adaptation lies at the heart of Darwinian evolution. Accordingly, numerous studies have tried to provide a formal framework for the description of the adaptive process. Of these, two complementary modeling approaches have emerged: While so-called adaptive-walk models consider adaptation from the successive fixation of de novo mutations only, quantitative genetic models assume that adaptation proceeds exclusively from preexisting standing genetic variation. The latter approach, however, has focused on short-term evolution of population means and variances rather than on the statistical properties of adaptive substitutions. Our aim is to combine these two approaches by describing the ecological and genetic factors that determine the genetic basis of adaptation from standing genetic variation in terms of the effect-size distribution of individual alleles. Specifically, we consider the evolution of a quantitative trait to a gradually changing environment. By means of analytical approximations, we derive the distribution of adaptive substitutions from standing genetic variation, that is, the distribution of the phenotypic effects of those alleles from the standing variation that become fixed during adaptation. Our results are checked against individual-based simulations. We find that, compared to adaptation from de novo mutations, (i) adaptation from standing variation proceeds by the fixation of more alleles of small effect and (ii) populations that adapt from standing genetic variation can traverse larger distances in phenotype space and, thus, have a higher potential for adaptation if the rate of environmental change is fast rather than slow. PMID:26038348

  1. Catch Me if You Can: Adaptation from Standing Genetic Variation to a Moving Phenotypic Optimum.

    PubMed

    Matuszewski, Sebastian; Hermisson, Joachim; Kopp, Michael

    2015-08-01

    Adaptation lies at the heart of Darwinian evolution. Accordingly, numerous studies have tried to provide a formal framework for the description of the adaptive process. Of these, two complementary modeling approaches have emerged: While so-called adaptive-walk models consider adaptation from the successive fixation of de novo mutations only, quantitative genetic models assume that adaptation proceeds exclusively from preexisting standing genetic variation. The latter approach, however, has focused on short-term evolution of population means and variances rather than on the statistical properties of adaptive substitutions. Our aim is to combine these two approaches by describing the ecological and genetic factors that determine the genetic basis of adaptation from standing genetic variation in terms of the effect-size distribution of individual alleles. Specifically, we consider the evolution of a quantitative trait to a gradually changing environment. By means of analytical approximations, we derive the distribution of adaptive substitutions from standing genetic variation, that is, the distribution of the phenotypic effects of those alleles from the standing variation that become fixed during adaptation. Our results are checked against individual-based simulations. We find that, compared to adaptation from de novo mutations, (i) adaptation from standing variation proceeds by the fixation of more alleles of small effect and (ii) populations that adapt from standing genetic variation can traverse larger distances in phenotype space and, thus, have a higher potential for adaptation if the rate of environmental change is fast rather than slow. PMID:26038348

  2. Quantitative Genetic Architecture at Latitudinal Range Boundaries: Reduced Variation but Higher Trait Independence.

    PubMed

    Paccard, Antoine; Van Buskirk, Josh; Willi, Yvonne

    2016-05-01

    Species distribution limits are hypothesized to be caused by small population size and limited genetic variation in ecologically relevant traits, but earlier studies have not evaluated genetic variation in multivariate phenotypes. We asked whether populations at the latitudinal edges of the distribution have altered quantitative genetic architecture of ecologically relevant traits compared with midlatitude populations. We calculated measures of evolutionary potential in nine Arabidopsis lyrata populations spanning the latitudinal range of the species in eastern and midwestern North America. Environments at the latitudinal extremes have reduced water availability, and therefore plants were assessed under wet and dry treatments. We estimated genetic variance-covariance (G-) matrices for 10 traits related to size, development, and water balance. Populations at southern and northern distribution edges had reduced levels of genetic variation across traits, but their G-matrices were more spherical; G-matrix orientation was unrelated to latitude. As a consequence, the predicted short-term response to selection was at least as strong in edge populations as in central populations. These results are consistent with genetic drift eroding variation and reducing the effectiveness of correlational selection at distribution margins. We conclude that genetic variation of isolated traits poorly predicts the capacity to evolve in response to multivariate selection and that the response to selection may frequently be greater than expected at species distribution margins because of genetic drift. PMID:27104998

  3. The relationship between parental genetic or phenotypic divergence and progeny variation in the maize nested association mapping population

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The choice of populations for quantitative genetics experiments impacts inferences about genetic architecture and prospective selection gains. Plant breeding and quantitative genetics studies are often conducted in one or a few among many possible biparental families. Trait genotypic variation withi...

  4. Analysis of Genetic Variation and Potential Applications in Genome-Scale Metabolic Modeling

    PubMed Central

    Cardoso, João G. R.; Andersen, Mikael Rørdam; Herrgård, Markus J.; Sonnenschein, Nikolaus

    2015-01-01

    Genetic variation is the motor of evolution and allows organisms to overcome the environmental challenges they encounter. It can be both beneficial and harmful in the process of engineering cell factories for the production of proteins and chemicals. Throughout the history of biotechnology, there have been efforts to exploit genetic variation in our favor to create strains with favorable phenotypes. Genetic variation can either be present in natural populations or it can be artificially created by mutagenesis and selection or adaptive laboratory evolution. On the other hand, unintended genetic variation during a long term production process may lead to significant economic losses and it is important to understand how to control this type of variation. With the emergence of next-generation sequencing technologies, genetic variation in microbial strains can now be determined on an unprecedented scale and resolution by re-sequencing thousands of strains systematically. In this article, we review challenges in the integration and analysis of large-scale re-sequencing data, present an extensive overview of bioinformatics methods for predicting the effects of genetic variants on protein function, and discuss approaches for interfacing existing bioinformatics approaches with genome-scale models of cellular processes in order to predict effects of sequence variation on cellular phenotypes. PMID:25763369

  5. Cyclic Variations in Sustained Human Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Aue, William R.; Arruda, James E.; Kass, Steven J.; Stanny, Claudia J.

    2009-01-01

    Biological rhythms play a prominent role in the modulation of human physiology and behavior. [Smith, K., Valentino, D., & Arruda, J. (2003). "Rhythmic oscillations in the performance of a sustained attention task." "Journal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology," 25, 561-570] suggested that sustained human performance may systematically…

  6. Drawing the line on genetic intervention in humans.

    PubMed

    Kaura, D R

    1996-03-15

    Because the science of genetics can have such profound effects on medicine and mankind, society must define the characteristics of a moral framework within which to make decisions about genetic issues. University of Manitoba medical student Deepak Kaura, who claimed third prize in CMAJ's 1995 Logie Medical Ethics Essay Contest, examines the ethics of genetic intervention in humans. PMID:8634976

  7. Drawing the line on genetic intervention in humans.

    PubMed Central

    Kaura, D R

    1996-01-01

    Because the science of genetics can have such profound effects on medicine and mankind, society must define the characteristics of a moral framework within which to make decisions about genetic issues. University of Manitoba medical student Deepak Kaura, who claimed third prize in CMAJ's 1995 Logie Medical Ethics Essay Contest, examines the ethics of genetic intervention in humans. Images p928-a PMID:8634976

  8. Individual Variations in Inorganic Arsenic Metabolism Associated with AS3MT Genetic Polymorphisms

    PubMed Central

    Agusa, Tetsuro; Fujihara, Junko; Takeshita, Haruo; Iwata, Hisato

    2011-01-01

    Individual variations in inorganic arsenic metabolism may influence the toxic effects. Arsenic (+3 oxidation state) methyltransferase (AS3MT) that can catalyze the transfer of a methyl group from S-adenosyl-l-methionine (AdoMet) to trivalent arsenical, may play a role in arsenic metabolism in humans. Since the genetic polymorphisms of AS3MT gene may be associated with the susceptibility to inorganic arsenic toxicity, relationships of several single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in AS3MT with inorganic arsenic metabolism have been investigated. Here, we summarize our recent findings and other previous studies on the inorganic arsenic metabolism and AS3MT genetic polymorphisms in humans. Results of genotype dependent differences in arsenic metabolism for most of SNPs in AS3MT were Inconsistent throughout the studies. Nevertheless, two SNPs, AS3MT 12390 (rs3740393) and 14458 (rs11191439) were consistently related to arsenic methylation regardless of the populations examined for the analysis. Thus, these SNPs may be useful indicators to predict the arsenic metabolism via methylation pathways. PMID:21731446

  9. A genetic basis of variation in eccrine sweat gland and hair follicle density

    PubMed Central

    Kamberov, Yana G.; Karlsson, Elinor K.; Kamberova, Gerda L.; Lieberman, Daniel E.; Sabeti, Pardis C.; Morgan, Bruce A.; Tabin, Clifford J.

    2015-01-01

    Among the unique features of humans, one of the most salient is the ability to effectively cool the body during extreme prolonged activity through the evapotranspiration of water on the skin’s surface. The evolution of this novel physiological ability required a dramatic increase in the density and distribution of eccrine sweat glands relative to other mammals and a concomitant reduction of body hair cover. Elucidation of the genetic underpinnings for these adaptive changes is confounded by a lack of knowledge about how eccrine gland fate and density are specified during development. Moreover, although reciprocal changes in hair cover and eccrine gland density are required for efficient thermoregulation, it is unclear if these changes are linked by a common genetic regulation. To identify pathways controlling the relative patterning of eccrine glands and hair follicles, we exploited natural variation in the density of these organs between different strains of mice. Quantitative trait locus mapping identified a large region on mouse Chromosome 1 that controls both hair and eccrine gland densities. Differential and allelic expression analysis of the genes within this interval coupled with subsequent functional studies demonstrated that the level of En1 activity directs the relative numbers of eccrine glands and hair follicles. These findings implicate En1 as a newly identified and reciprocal determinant of hair follicle and eccrine gland density and identify a pathway that could have contributed to the evolution of the unique features of human skin. PMID:26195765

  10. A genetic basis of variation in eccrine sweat gland and hair follicle density.

    PubMed

    Kamberov, Yana G; Karlsson, Elinor K; Kamberova, Gerda L; Lieberman, Daniel E; Sabeti, Pardis C; Morgan, Bruce A; Tabin, Clifford J

    2015-08-11

    Among the unique features of humans, one of the most salient is the ability to effectively cool the body during extreme prolonged activity through the evapotranspiration of water on the skin's surface. The evolution of this novel physiological ability required a dramatic increase in the density and distribution of eccrine sweat glands relative to other mammals and a concomitant reduction of body hair cover. Elucidation of the genetic underpinnings for these adaptive changes is confounded by a lack of knowledge about how eccrine gland fate and density are specified during development. Moreover, although reciprocal changes in hair cover and eccrine gland density are required for efficient thermoregulation, it is unclear if these changes are linked by a common genetic regulation. To identify pathways controlling the relative patterning of eccrine glands and hair follicles, we exploited natural variation in the density of these organs between different strains of mice. Quantitative trait locus mapping identified a large region on mouse Chromosome 1 that controls both hair and eccrine gland densities. Differential and allelic expression analysis of the genes within this interval coupled with subsequent functional studies demonstrated that the level of En1 activity directs the relative numbers of eccrine glands and hair follicles. These findings implicate En1 as a newly identified and reciprocal determinant of hair follicle and eccrine gland density and identify a pathway that could have contributed to the evolution of the unique features of human skin. PMID:26195765

  11. Strategies for Integrated Analysis of Genetic, Epigenetic, and Gene Expression Variation in Cancer: Addressing the Challenges

    PubMed Central

    Thingholm, Louise B.; Andersen, Lars; Makalic, Enes; Southey, Melissa C.; Thomassen, Mads; Hansen, Lise Lotte

    2016-01-01

    The development and progression of cancer, a collection of diseases with complex genetic architectures, is facilitated by the interplay of multiple etiological factors. This complexity challenges the traditional single-platform study design and calls for an integrated approach to data analysis. However, integration of heterogeneous measurements of biological variation is a non-trivial exercise due to the diversity of the human genome and the variety of output data formats and genome coverage obtained from the commonly used molecular platforms. This review article will provide an introduction to integration strategies used for analyzing genetic risk factors for cancer. We critically examine the ability of these strategies to handle the complexity of the human genome and also accommodate information about the biological and functional interactions between the elements that have been measured—making the assessment of disease risk against a composite genomic factor possible. The focus of this review is to provide an overview and introduction to the main strategies and to discuss where there is a need for further development. PMID:26870081

  12. GENETIC VARIATION FOR COPPER RESISTANCE IN FATHEAD MINNOW TOXICITY TESTS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Unexplained variation in the results of aquatic organism toxicity tests is a consistently observed and troubling phenomenon. Possible sources of variation include differences in condition or nutritional status of the population prior to the test, as well as age, density and hand...

  13. Genetically modified plants and human health

    PubMed Central

    Key, Suzie; Ma, Julian K-C; Drake, Pascal MW

    2008-01-01

    Summary Genetically modified (or GM) plants have attracted a large amount of media attention in recent years and continue to do so. Despite this, the general public remains largely unaware of what a GM plant actually is or what advantages and disadvantages the technology has to offer, particularly with regard to the range of applications for which they can be used. From the first generation of GM crops, two main areas of concern have emerged, namely risk to the environment and risk to human health. As GM plants are gradually being introduced into the European Union there is likely to be increasing public concern regarding potential health issues. Although it is now commonplace for the press to adopt ‘health campaigns’, the information they publish is often unreliable and unrepresentative of the available scientific evidence. We consider it important that the medical profession should be aware of the state of the art, and, as they are often the first port of call for a concerned patient, be in a position to provide an informed opinion. This review will examine how GM plants may impact on human health both directly – through applications targeted at nutrition and enhancement of recombinant medicine production – but also indirectly, through potential effects on the environment. Finally, it will examine the most important opposition currently facing the worldwide adoption of this technology: public opinion. PMID:18515776

  14. Genetic and Fossil Evidence for the Origin of Modern Humans.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stringer, C. B.; Andrews, P.

    1988-01-01

    Discusses how genetic data on present human population relationships and data from the Pleistocene fossil hominid record are being used to compare two contrasting models for the origin of modern humans. (TW)

  15. The Genetics of Common Variation affecting Platelet Development, Function and Pharmaceutical Targeting

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Andrew D.

    2011-01-01

    Summary Common variant effects on human platelet function and response to anti-platelet treatment have traditionally been studied using candidate gene approaches involving a limited number of variants and genes. These studies have often been undertaken in clinically defined cohorts. More recently, studies have applied genome-wide scans in larger population samples than prior candidate studies, in some cases scanning relatively healthy individuals. These studies demonstrate synergy with some prior candidate gene findings (e.g., GP6, ADRA2A) but also uncover novel loci involved in platelet function. Here, I summarise findings on common genetic variation influencing platelet development, function and therapeutics. Taken together, candidate gene and genome-wide studies begin to account for common variation in platelet function and provide information that may ultimately be useful in pharmacogenetic applications in the clinic. More than 50 loci have been identified with consistent associations with platelet phenotypes in ≥2 populations. Several variants are under further study in clinical trials relating to anti-platelet therapies. In order to have useful clinical applications, variants must have large effects on a modifiable outcome. Regardless of clinical applications, studies of common genetic influences, even of small effect, offer additional insights into platelet biology including the importance of intracellular signalling and novel receptors. Understanding of common platelet-related genetics remains behind parallel fields (e.g., lipids, blood pressure) due to challenges in phenotype ascertainment. Further work is necessary to discover and characterise loci for platelet function, and to assess whether these loci contribute to disease aetiologies or response to therapeutics. PMID:21781261

  16. Genetic Variation of Major Histocompatibility Complex and Microsatellite Loci: A Comparison in Bighorn Sheep

    PubMed Central

    Boyce, W. M.; Hedrick, P. W.; Muggli-Cockett, N. E.; Kalinowski, S.; Penedo, MCT.; Ramey-II, R. R.

    1997-01-01

    Examining and comparing genetic variation for major histocompatibility complex (MHC) and microsatellite (MS) loci in the same individuals provides an opportunity to understand the forces influencing genetic variation. We examined five MHC and three MS loci in 235 bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis) from 14 populations and found that both types of loci were highly variable and were in Hardy-Weinberg proportions. Mean F(ST) values for both markers were very similar and MHC and MS genetic variability was predominantly distributed within rather than among populations. However, analyses of genetic distances and tree topologies revealed different spatial patterns of variation for the two types of loci. Collectively, these results indicated that neutral forces substantially influenced MS and MHC variation, and they provided limited evidence for selection acting on the MHC. PMID:9071595

  17. Genetic Variation in Dopamine Pathways Differentially Associated with Smoking Progression in Adolescence

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Laucht, Manfred; Becker, Katja; Frank, Josef; Schmidt, Martin H.; Esser, Gunter; Treutlein, Jens; Skowronek, Markus H.; Schumann, Gunter

    2008-01-01

    A study examines whether genetic variation in dopamine pathways differentially associate with smoking progression in adolescence. Results indicate the influence of specific dopamine genes in different stages of smoking progression in adolescents.

  18. Mycoplasma genitalium: an efficient strategy to generate genetic variation from a minimal genome

    PubMed Central

    Ma, Liang; Jensen, Jørgen S; Myers, Leann; Burnett, Judy; Welch, Mary; Jia, Qiuyao; Martin, David H

    2007-01-01

    Mycoplasma genitalium, a human pathogen associated with sexually transmitted diseases, is unique in that it has smallest genome of any known free-living organism. The goal of this study was to investigate if and how M. genitalium uses a minimal genome to generate genetic variations. We analysed the sequence variability of the third gene (MG192 or mgpC) of the M. genitalium MgPa adhesion operon, demonstrated that the MG192 gene is highly variable among and within M. genitalium strains in vitro and in vivo, and identified MG192 sequence shifts in the course of in vitro passage of the G37 type strain and in sequential specimens from an M. genitalium-infected patient. In order to establish the origin of the MG192 variants, we examined nine genomic loci containing partial copies of the MgPa operon, known as MgPar sequences. Our analysis suggests that the MG192 sequence variation is achieved by recombination between the MG192 expression site and MgPar sequences via gene cross-over and, possibly, also by gene conversion. It appears plausible that M. genitalium has the ability to generate unlimited variants from its minimized genome, which presumably allows the organism to adapt to diverse environments and/or to evade host defences by antigenic variation. PMID:17784912

  19. Genetic Variation of Fatty Acid Oxidation and Obesity, A Literature Review

    PubMed Central

    Freitag Luglio, Harry

    2016-01-01

    Modulation of fat metabolism is an important component of the etiology of obesity as well as individual response to weight loss program. The influence of lipolysis process had receives many attentions in recent decades. Compared to that, fatty acid oxidation which occurred after lipolysis seems to be less exposed. There are limited publications on how fatty acid oxidation influences predisposition to obesity, especially the importance of genetic variations of fatty acid oxidation proteins on development of obesity. The aim of this review is to provide recent knowledge on how polymorphism of genes related fatty acid oxidation is obtained. Studies in human as well as animal model showed that disturbance of genes related fatty acid oxidation process gave impact on body weight and risks to obesity. Several polymorphisms on CD36, CPT, ACS and FABP had been shown to be related to obesity either by regulating enzymatic activity or directly influence fatty acid oxidation process. PMID:27127449

  20. Genetic variation among agamid lizards of the trapelus agiliscomplex in the caspian-aral basin

    SciTech Connect

    Macey, J. Robert; Ananjeva, Natalia B.

    2004-05-19

    Allozyme variation is examined in eight populations of Trapelus from the Caspian-Aral Basin of the former USSR. Thirty-one loci (15 variable) exhibit remarkably low levels of genetic variation with only a Nei's genetic distance of 0.117 across 2500 km. An isolated population on the European side of the Caspian Sea is found to phenetically cluster inside the Asian populations examined, suggesting that it should not be considered taxonomically distinct.

  1. Population history and natural selection shape patterns of genetic variation in 132 genes.

    PubMed

    Akey, Joshua M; Eberle, Michael A; Rieder, Mark J; Carlson, Christopher S; Shriver, Mark D; Nickerson, Deborah A; Kruglyak, Leonid

    2004-10-01

    Identifying regions of the human genome that have been targets of natural selection will provide important insights into human evolutionary history and may facilitate the identification of complex disease genes. Although the signature that natural selection imparts on DNA sequence variation is difficult to disentangle from the effects of neutral processes such as population demographic history, selective and demographic forces can be distinguished by analyzing multiple loci dispersed throughout the genome. We studied the molecular evolution of 132 genes by comprehensively resequencing them in 24 African-Americans and 23 European-Americans. We developed a rigorous computational approach for taking into account multiple hypothesis tests and demographic history and found that while many apparent selective events can instead be explained by demography, there is also strong evidence for positive or balancing selection at eight genes in the European-American population, but none in the African-American population. Our results suggest that the migration of modern humans out of Africa into new environments was accompanied by genetic adaptations to emergent selective forces. In addition, a region containing four contiguous genes on Chromosome 7 showed striking evidence of a recent selective sweep in European-Americans. More generally, our results have important implications for mapping genes underlying complex human diseases. PMID:15361935

  2. Conservation genetics of the Philippine tarsier: cryptic genetic variation restructures conservation priorities for an island archipelago primate.

    PubMed

    Brown, Rafe M; Weghorst, Jennifer A; Olson, Karen V; Duya, Mariano R M; Barley, Anthony J; Duya, Melizar V; Shekelle, Myron; Neri-Arboleda, Irene; Esselstyn, Jacob A; Dominy, Nathaniel J; Ong, Perry S; Moritz, Gillian L; Luczon, Adrian; Diesmos, Mae Lowe L; Diesmos, Arvin C; Siler, Cameron D

    2014-01-01

    Establishment of conservation priorities for primates is a particular concern in the island archipelagos of Southeast Asia, where rates of habitat destruction are among the highest in the world. Conservation programs require knowledge of taxonomic diversity to ensure success. The Philippine tarsier is a flagship species that promotes environmental awareness and a thriving ecotourism economy in the Philippines. However, assessment of its conservation status has been impeded by taxonomic uncertainty, a paucity of field studies, and a lack of vouchered specimens and genetic samples available for study in biodiversity repositories. Consequently, conservation priorities are unclear. In this study we use mitochondrial and nuclear DNA to empirically infer geographic partitioning of genetic variation and to identify evolutionarily distinct lineages for conservation action. The distribution of Philippine tarsier genetic diversity is neither congruent with expectations based on biogeographical patterns documented in other Philippine vertebrates, nor does it agree with the most recent Philippine tarsier taxonomic arrangement. We identify three principal evolutionary lineages that do not correspond to the currently recognized subspecies, highlight the discovery of a novel cryptic and range-restricted subcenter of genetic variation in an unanticipated part of the archipelago, and identify additional geographically structured genetic variation that should be the focus of future studies and conservation action. Conservation of this flagship species necessitates establishment of protected areas and targeted conservation programs within the range of each genetically distinct variant of the Philippine tarsier. PMID:25136854

  3. Reduced genetic variation and the success of an invasive species

    PubMed Central

    Tsutsui, Neil D.; Suarez, Andrew V.; Holway, David A.; Case, Ted J.

    2000-01-01

    Despite the severe ecological and economic damage caused by introduced species, factors that allow invaders to become successful often remain elusive. Of invasive taxa, ants are among the most widespread and harmful. Highly invasive ants are often unicolonial, forming supercolonies in which workers and queens mix freely among physically separate nests. By reducing costs associated with territoriality, unicolonial species can attain high worker densities, allowing them to achieve interspecific dominance. Here we examine the behavior and population genetics of the invasive Argentine ant (Linepithema humile) in its native and introduced ranges, and we provide a mechanism to explain its success as an invader. Using microsatellite markers, we show that a population bottleneck has reduced the genetic diversity of introduced populations. This loss is associated with reduced intraspecific aggression among spatially separate nests, and leads to the formation of interspecifically dominant supercolonies. In contrast, native populations are more genetically variable and exhibit pronounced intraspecific aggression. Although reductions in genetic diversity are generally considered detrimental, these findings provide an example of how a genetic bottleneck can lead to widespread ecological success. In addition, these results provide insights into the origin and evolution of unicoloniality, which is often considered a challenge to kin selection theory. PMID:10811892

  4. Perfect genetic correlation between number of offspring and grandoffspring in an industrialized human population

    PubMed Central

    Zietsch, Brendan P.; Kuja-Halkola, Ralf; Walum, Hasse; Verweij, Karin J. H.

    2014-01-01

    Reproductive success is widely used as a measure of fitness. However, offspring quantity may not reflect the genetic contribution to subsequent generations if there is nonrandom variation in offspring quality. Offspring quality is likely to be an important component of human fitness, and tradeoffs between offspring quantity and quality have been reported. As such, studies using offspring quantity as a proxy for fitness may yield erroneous projections of evolutionary change, for example if there is little or no genetic variance in number of grandoffspring or if its genetic variance is to some extent independent of the genetic variance in number of offspring. To address this, we performed a quantitative genetic analysis on the reproductive history of 16,268 Swedish twins born between 1915 and 1929 and their offspring. There was significant sex limitation in the sources of familial variation, but the magnitudes of the genetic and environmental effects were the same in males and females. We found significant genetic variation in number of offspring and grandoffspring (heritability = 24% and 16%, respectively), and genetic variation in the two variables completely overlapped—i.e., there was a perfect genetic correlation between number of offspring and grandoffspring. Shared environment played a smaller but significant role in number of offspring and grandoffspring; again, there was a perfect shared environmental correlation between the two variables. These findings support the use of lifetime reproductive success as a proxy for fitness in populations like the one used here, but we caution against generalizing this conclusion to other kinds of human societies. PMID:24395780

  5. The Evolution of Personality Variation in Humans and Other Animals

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nettle, Daniel

    2006-01-01

    A comprehensive evolutionary framework for understanding the maintenance of heritable behavioral variation in humans is yet to be developed. Some evolutionary psychologists have argued that heritable variation will not be found in important, fitness-relevant characteristics because of the winnowing effect of natural selection. This article…

  6. Discovery of Genetic Variation that Enhances Improvement of Dairy Production and Health in Cattle and Buffalos

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The hypothesis underlying this project is that genome-wide information on genetic variation will increase accuracy of predictions of genetic merit; will enhance heritability and reliability of these predictions through improved pedigree information; and will improve detection of most quantitative tr...

  7. Genetic variation in historical and modern apple cultivars compared to wild relatives

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Plant domestication is generally modeled as a scenario wherein strong artificial selection is applied to a small subset of the population of a wild species. The result is that the domesticated species exhibits a genome-wide reduction in genetic variation, referred to as a genetic bottleneck. This ...

  8. Genetic variation in bison (bison bison) subspecies and cattle (Bos taurus) breeds and subspecies

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetic variation was quantified at 29 polymorphic microsatellite DNA loci in nine herds of plains bison (Bison bison bison), three herds of wood bison (B.b. athabascae), fourteen breeds of taurine cattle (Bos Taurus Taurus), and two breeds of indicine cattle (Bos Taurus indicus). Genetic distances,...

  9. Genetic variation and differentiation of bison (Bison bison) subspecies and cattle (Bos taurus) breeds and subspecies

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetic variation was quantified at 29 polymorphic microsatellite DNA loci in nine herds of plains bison (Bison bison bison), three herds of wood bison (B. b. athabascae), fourteen breeds of taurine cattle (Bos taurus taurus), and two breeds of indicine cattle (Bos taurus indicus). Genetic distances...

  10. GENETIC VARIATION MEASURED BY MICROSATELLITES AMONG THREE STRAINS OF DOMESTICATED RAINBOW TROUT

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetic variation fuels selective change in natural and captive populations. In establishing a broodstock for selective improvement the degree of genetic diversity is an important consideration because it provides an indication of the scope for selective progress. Here three strains of rainbow tro...

  11. Human Gut Microbiota: Repertoire and Variations

    PubMed Central

    Lagier, Jean-Christophe; Million, Matthieu; Hugon, Perrine; Armougom, Fabrice; Raoult, Didier

    2012-01-01

    The composition of human gut microbiota and their relationship with the host and, consequently, with human health and disease, presents several challenges to microbiologists. Originally dominated by culture-dependent methods for exploring this ecosystem, the advent of molecular tools has revolutionized our ability to investigate these relationships. However, many biases that have led to contradictory results have been identified. Microbial culturomics, a recent concept based on a use of several culture conditions with identification by MALDI-TOF followed by the genome sequencing of the new species cultured had allowed a complementarity with metagenomics. Culturomics allowed to isolate 31 new bacterial species, the largest human virus, the largest bacteria, and the largest Archaea from human. Moreover, some members of this ecosystem, such as Eukaryotes, giant viruses, Archaea, and Planctomycetes, have been neglected by the majority of studies. In addition, numerous factors, such as age, geographic provenance, dietary habits, antibiotics, or probiotics, can influence the composition of the microbiota. Finally, in addition to the countless biases associated with the study techniques, a considerable limitation to the interpretation of studies of human gut microbiota is associated with funding sources and transparency disclosures. In the future, studies independent of food industry funding and using complementary methods from a broad range of both culture-based and molecular tools will increase our knowledge of the repertoire of this complex ecosystem and host-microbiota mutualism. PMID:23130351

  12. Pedigree- and SNP-Associated Genetics and Recent Environment are the Major Contributors to Anthropometric and Cardiometabolic Trait Variation

    PubMed Central

    Xia, Charley; Amador, Carmen; Huffman, Jennifer; Trochet, Holly; Campbell, Archie; Porteous, David; Hastie, Nicholas D.; Hayward, Caroline; Vitart, Veronique; Navarro, Pau; Haley, Chris S.

    2016-01-01

    Genome-wide association studies have successfully identified thousands of loci for a range of human complex traits and diseases. The proportion of phenotypic variance explained by significant associations is, however, limited. Given the same dense SNP panels, mixed model analyses capture a greater proportion of phenotypic variance than single SNP analyses but the total is generally still less than the genetic variance estimated from pedigree studies. Combining information from pedigree relationships and SNPs, we examined 16 complex anthropometric and cardiometabolic traits in a Scottish family-based cohort comprising up to 20,000 individuals genotyped for ~520,000 common autosomal SNPs. The inclusion of related individuals provides the opportunity to also estimate the genetic variance associated with pedigree as well as the effects of common family environment. Trait variation was partitioned into SNP-associated and pedigree-associated genetic variation, shared nuclear family environment, shared couple (partner) environment and shared full-sibling environment. Results demonstrate that trait heritabilities vary widely but, on average across traits, SNP-associated and pedigree-associated genetic effects each explain around half the genetic variance. For most traits the recently-shared environment of couples is also significant, accounting for ~11% of the phenotypic variance on average. On the other hand, the environment shared largely in the past by members of a nuclear family or by full-siblings, has a more limited impact. Our findings point to appropriate models to use in future studies as pedigree-associated genetic effects and couple environmental effects have seldom been taken into account in genotype-based analyses. Appropriate description of the trait variation could help understand causes of intra-individual variation and in the detection of contributing loci and environmental factors. PMID:26836320

  13. Framework for interpretation of genetic variations in pancreatitis patients.

    PubMed

    Whitcomb, David C

    2012-01-01

    Chronic pancreatitis (CP) is defined by irreversible damage to the pancreas as a result of inflammation-driven pancreatic tissue destruction and fibrosis occurring over many years. The disorder is complex, with multiple etiologies leading to the same tissue pathology, and unpredictable clinical courses with variable pain, exocrine and endocrine organ dysfunction, and cancer. Underlying genetic variants are central CP susceptibility and progression. Three genes, with Mendelian genetic biology (PRSS1, CFTR, and SPINK1) have been recognized for over a decade, and little progress has been made since then. Furthermore, application of high-throughput genetic techniques, including genome-wide association studies (GWAS) and next generation sequencing (NGS) will provide a large volume of new genetic variants that are associated with CP, but with small independent effect that are impossible to apply in the clinic. The problem of interpretation is using the old framework of the germ theory of disease to understand complex genetic disorders. To understand these variants and translate them into clinically useful information requires a new framework based on modeling and simulation of physiological processes with or without genetic, metabolic and environmental variables considered at the cellular and organ levels, with integration of the immune system, nervous system, tissue injury and repair system, and DNA repair system. The North American Pancreatitis Study 2 (NAPS2) study was designed to capture this type of date and construct a time line to understand and later predict rates of disease progression from the initial symptom to end-stage disease. This effort is needed to target the etiology of pancreatic dysfunction beginning at the first signs of disease and thereby prevent the development of irreversible damage and the complications of CP. The need for a new framework and the rational for implementing it into clinical practice are described. PMID:23230421

  14. NORMAL HUMAN VARIATION: REFOCUSSING THE ENHANCEMENT DEBATE

    PubMed Central

    Kahane, Guy; Savulescu, Julian

    2015-01-01

    This article draws attention to several common mistakes in thinking about biomedical enhancement, mistakes that are made even by some supporters of enhancement. We illustrate these mistakes by examining objections that John Harris has recently raised against the use of pharmacological interventions to directly modulate moral decision-making. We then apply these lessons to other influential figures in the debate about enhancement. One upshot of our argument is that many considerations presented as powerful objections to enhancement are really strong considerations in favour of biomedical enhancement, just in a different direction. Another upshot is that it is unfortunate that much of the current debate focuses on interventions that will radically transform normal human capacities. Such interventions are unlikely to be available in the near future, and may not even be feasible. But our argument shows that the enhancement project can still have a radical impact on human life even if biomedical enhancement operated entirely within the normal human range. PMID:23906367

  15. Normal human variation: refocussing the enhancement debate.

    PubMed

    Kahane, Guy; Savulescu, Julian

    2015-02-01

    This article draws attention to several common mistakes in thinking about biomedical enhancement, mistakes that are made even by some supporters of enhancement. We illustrate these mistakes by examining objections that John Harris has recently raised against the use of pharmacological interventions to directly modulate moral decision-making. We then apply these lessons to other influential figures in the debate about enhancement. One upshot of our argument is that many considerations presented as powerful objections to enhancement are really strong considerations in favour of biomedical enhancement, just in a different direction. Another upshot is that it is unfortunate that much of the current debate focuses on interventions that will radically transform normal human capacities. Such interventions are unlikely to be available in the near future, and may not even be feasible. But our argument shows that the enhancement project can still have a radical impact on human life even if biomedical enhancement operated entirely within the normal human range. PMID:23906367

  16. Variation and Genetic Structure in Platanus mexicana (Platanaceae) along Riparian Altitudinal Gradient

    PubMed Central

    Galván-Hernández, Dulce M.; Lozada-García, J. Armando; Flores-Estévez, Norma; Galindo-González, Jorge; Vázquez-Torres, S. Mario

    2015-01-01

    Platanus mexicana is a dominant arboreal species of riparian ecosystems. These ecosystems are associated with altitudinal gradients that can generate genetic differences in the species, especially in the extremes of the distribution. However, studies on the altitudinal effect on genetic variation to riparian species are scarce. In Mexico, the population of P. mexicana along the Colipa River (Veracruz State) grows below its reported minimum altitude range, possibly the lowest where this tree grows. This suggests that altitude might be an important factor in population genetics differentiation. We examined the genetic variation and population structuring at four sites with different altitudes (70, 200, 600 and 1700 m a.s.l.) using ten inter-simple sequence repeats (ISSR) markers. The highest value for Shannon index and Nei’s gene diversity was obtained at 1700 m a.s.l. (He = 0.27, Ne = 1.47, I = 0.42) and polymorphism reached the top value at the middle altitude (% p = 88.57). Analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA) and STRUCTURE analysis indicated intrapopulation genetic differentiation. The arithmetic average (UPGMA) dendrogram identified 70 m a.s.l. as the most genetically distant site. The genetic structuring resulted from limited gene flow and genetic drift. This is the first report of genetic variation in populations of P. mexicana in Mexico. This research highlights its importance as a dominant species, and its ecological and evolutionary implications in altitudinal gradients of riparian ecosystems. PMID:25607732

  17. Variation in alternative splicing across human tissues

    PubMed Central

    Yeo, Gene; Holste, Dirk; Kreiman, Gabriel; Burge, Christopher B

    2004-01-01

    Background Alternative pre-mRNA splicing (AS) is widely used by higher eukaryotes to generate different protein isoforms in specific cell or tissue types. To compare AS events across human tissues, we analyzed the splicing patterns of genomically aligned expressed sequence tags (ESTs) derived from libraries of cDNAs from different tissues. Results Controlling for differences in EST coverage among tissues, we found that the brain and testis had the highest levels of exon skipping. The most pronounced differences between tissues were seen for the frequencies of alternative 3' splice site and alternative 5' splice site usage, which were about 50 to 100% higher in the liver than in any other human tissue studied. Quantifying differences in splice junction usage, the brain, pancreas, liver and the peripheral nervous system had the most distinctive patterns of AS. Analysis of available microarray expression data showed that the liver had the most divergent pattern of expression of serine-arginine protein and heterogeneous ribonucleoprotein genes compared to the other human tissues studied, possibly contributing to the unusually high frequency of alternative splice site usage seen in liver. Sequence motifs enriched in alternative exons in genes expressed in the brain, testis and liver suggest specific splicing factors that may be important in AS regulation in these tissues. Conclusions This study distinguishes the human brain, testis and liver as having unusually high levels of AS, highlights differences in the types of AS occurring commonly in different tissues, and identifies candidate cis-regulatory elements and trans-acting factors likely to have important roles in tissue-specific AS in human cells. PMID:15461793

  18. Bovine Genetic Diversity Revealed By mtDNA Sequence Variation

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Mitochondrial DNA single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) data were used to determine genetic distance, nucleotide diversity, construction of haplotypes, estimation of information contents, and phylogenic relationships in bovine HapMap breeds. The Bovine International HapMap panel consists of 720 anima...

  19. DNA Based Genetic Variation for Red Rot Resistance in Sugarcane

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetic difference between twelve red rot resistant and five susceptible genotypes of sugarcane cultivated in Pakistan were studied using Random Amplified Polymorphic DNA (RAPD) markers. Initial screening was done using 300 markers and four genotypes (two resistant and two susceptible for red rot). ...

  20. Genetic architecture for human aggression: A study of gene-phenotype relationship in OMIM.

    PubMed

    Zhang-James, Yanli; Faraone, Stephen V

    2016-07-01

    Genetic studies of human aggression have mainly focused on known candidate genes and pathways regulating serotonin and dopamine signaling and hormonal functions. These studies have taught us much about the genetics of human aggression, but no genetic locus has yet achieved genome-significance. We here present a review based on a paradoxical hypothesis that studies of rare, functional genetic variations can lead to a better understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying complex multifactorial disorders such as aggression. We examined all aggression phenotypes catalogued in Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man (OMIM), an Online Catalog of Human Genes and Genetic Disorders. We identified 95 human disorders that have documented aggressive symptoms in at least one individual with a well-defined genetic variant. Altogether, we retrieved 86 causal genes. Although most of these genes had not been implicated in human aggression by previous studies, the most significantly enriched canonical pathways had been previously implicated in aggression (e.g., serotonin and dopamine signaling). Our findings provide strong evidence to support the causal role of these pathways in the pathogenesis of aggression. In addition, the novel genes and pathways we identified suggest additional mechanisms underlying the origins of human aggression. Genome-wide association studies with very large samples will be needed to determine if common variants in these genes are risk factors for aggression. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26288127

  1. Inbreeding and the genetic complexity of human hypertension.

    PubMed Central

    Rudan, Igor; Smolej-Narancic, Nina; Campbell, Harry; Carothers, Andrew; Wright, Alan; Janicijevic, Branka; Rudan, Pavao

    2003-01-01

    Considerable uncertainty exists regarding the genetic architecture underlying common late-onset human diseases. In particular, the contribution of deleterious recessive alleles has been predicted to be greater for late-onset than for early-onset traits. We have investigated the contribution of recessive alleles to human hypertension by examining the effects of inbreeding on blood pressure (BP) as a quantitative trait in 2760 adult individuals from 25 villages within Croatian island isolates. We found a strong linear relationship between the inbreeding coefficient (F) and both systolic and diastolic BP, indicating that recessive or partially recessive quantitative trait locus (QTL) alleles account for 10-15% of the total variation in BP in this population. An increase in F of 0.01 corresponded to an increase of approximately 3 mm Hg in systolic and 2 mm Hg in diastolic BP. Regression of F on BP indicated that at least several hundred (300-600) recessive QTL contribute to BP variability. A model of the distribution of locus effects suggests that the 8-16 QTL of largest effect together account for a maximum of 25% of the dominance variation, while the remaining 75% of the variation is mediated by QTL of very small effect, unlikely to be detectable using current technologies and sample sizes. We infer that recent inbreeding accounts for 36% of all hypertension in this population. The global impact of inbreeding on hypertension may be substantial since, although inbreeding is declining in Western societies, an estimated 1 billion people globally show rates of consanguineous marriages >20%. PMID:12663539

  2. Molecular genetic variation in cultivated peanuts germplasm of Henan and detection of their elite allelic variations

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Groundnut or peanut (Arachis hypogaea L.) is an economically important crop worldwide as a source of protein and cooking oil, particularly in developing countries. Because of its narrow genetic background and shortage of polymorphic genetic markers, molecular characterization of cultivated peanuts i...

  3. Statistical Analysis of Variation in the Human Plasma Proteome

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Corzett, Todd H.; Fodor, Imola K.; Choi, Megan W.; Walsworth, Vicki L.; Turteltaub, Kenneth W.; McCutchen-Maloney, Sandra L.; Chromy, Brett A.

    2010-01-01

    Quantifying the variation in the human plasma proteome is an essential prerequisite for disease-specific biomarker detection. We report here on the longitudinal and individual variation in human plasma characterized by two-dimensional difference gel electrophoresis (2-D DIGE) using plasma samples from eleven healthy subjects collected three times over a two week period. Fixed-effects modeling was used to remove dye and gel variability. Mixed-effects modeling was then used to quantitate the sources of proteomic variation. The subject-to-subject variation represented the largest variance component, while the time-within-subject variation was comparable to the experimental variation found in a previous technical variability study where onemore » human plasma sample was processed eight times in parallel and each was then analyzed by 2-D DIGE in triplicate. Here, 21 protein spots had larger than 50% CV, suggesting that these proteins may not be appropriate as biomarkers and should be carefully scrutinized in future studies. Seventy-eight protein spots showing differential protein levels between different individuals or individual collections were identified by mass spectrometry and further characterized using hierarchical clustering. The results present a first step toward understanding the complexity of longitudinal and individual variation in the human plasma proteome, and provide a baseline for improved biomarker discovery.« less

  4. Statistical analysis of variation in the human plasma proteome.

    PubMed

    Corzett, Todd H; Fodor, Imola K; Choi, Megan W; Walsworth, Vicki L; Turteltaub, Kenneth W; McCutchen-Maloney, Sandra L; Chromy, Brett A

    2010-01-01

    Quantifying the variation in the human plasma proteome is an essential prerequisite for disease-specific biomarker detection. We report here on the longitudinal and individual variation in human plasma characterized by two-dimensional difference gel electrophoresis (2-D DIGE) using plasma samples from eleven healthy subjects collected three times over a two week period. Fixed-effects modeling was used to remove dye and gel variability. Mixed-effects modeling was then used to quantitate the sources of proteomic variation. The subject-to-subject variation represented the largest variance component, while the time-within-subject variation was comparable to the experimental variation found in a previous technical variability study where one human plasma sample was processed eight times in parallel and each was then analyzed by 2-D DIGE in triplicate. Here, 21 protein spots had larger than 50% CV, suggesting that these proteins may not be appropriate as biomarkers and should be carefully scrutinized in future studies. Seventy-eight protein spots showing differential protein levels between different individuals or individual collections were identified by mass spectrometry and further characterized using hierarchical clustering. The results present a first step toward understanding the complexity of longitudinal and individual variation in the human plasma proteome, and provide a baseline for improved biomarker discovery. PMID:20130815

  5. Inferences of Recent and Ancient Human Population History Using Genetic and Non-Genetic Data

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kitchen, Andrew

    2008-01-01

    I have adopted complementary approaches to inferring human demographic history utilizing human and non-human genetic data as well as cultural data. These complementary approaches form an interdisciplinary perspective that allows one to make inferences of human history at varying timescales, from the events that occurred tens of thousands of years…

  6. Genetic Variation, Not Cell Type of Origin, Underlies the Majority of Identifiable Regulatory Differences in iPSCs

    PubMed Central

    Pavlovic, Bryan J.; Patterson, Kristen; Gallego Romero, Irene; Pritchard, Jonathan K.; Gilad, Yoav

    2016-01-01

    The advent of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) revolutionized human genetics by allowing us to generate pluripotent cells from easily accessible somatic tissues. This technology can have immense implications for regenerative medicine, but iPSCs also represent a paradigm shift in the study of complex human phenotypes, including gene regulation and disease. Yet, an unresolved caveat of the iPSC model system is the extent to which reprogrammed iPSCs retain residual phenotypes from their precursor somatic cells. To directly address this issue, we used an effective study design to compare regulatory phenotypes between iPSCs derived from two types of commonly used somatic precursor cells. We find a remarkably small number of differences in DNA methylation and gene expression levels between iPSCs derived from different somatic precursors. Instead, we demonstrate genetic variation is associated with the majority of identifiable variation in DNA methylation and gene expression levels. We show that the cell type of origin only minimally affects gene expression levels and DNA methylation in iPSCs, and that genetic variation is the main driver of regulatory differences between iPSCs of different donors. Our findings suggest that studies using iPSCs should focus on additional individuals rather than clones from the same individual. PMID:26812582

  7. Meiotic gene-conversion rate and tract length variation in the human genome.

    PubMed

    Padhukasahasram, Badri; Rannala, Bruce

    2013-02-27

    Meiotic recombination occurs in the form of two different mechanisms called crossing-over and gene-conversion and both processes have an important role in shaping genetic variation in populations. Although variation in crossing-over rates has been studied extensively using sperm-typing experiments, pedigree studies and population genetic approaches, our knowledge of variation in gene-conversion parameters (ie, rates and mean tract lengths) remains far from complete. To explore variability in population gene-conversion rates and its relationship to crossing-over rate variation patterns, we have developed and validated using coalescent simulations a comprehensive Bayesian full-likelihood method that can jointly infer crossing-over and gene-conversion rates as well as tract lengths from population genomic data under general variable rate models with recombination hotspots. Here, we apply this new method to SNP data from multiple human populations and attempt to characterize for the first time the fine-scale variation in gene-conversion parameters along the human genome. We find that the estimated ratio of gene-conversion to crossing-over rates varies considerably across genomic regions as well as between populations. However, there is a great degree of uncertainty associated with such estimates. We also find substantial evidence for variation in the mean conversion tract length. The estimated tract lengths did not show any negative relationship with the local heterozygosity levels in our analysis.European Journal of Human Genetics advance online publication, 27 February 2013; doi:10.1038/ejhg.2013.30. PMID:23443031

  8. Genet Variation of Ectomycorrhizal Suillus granulatus Fruiting Bodies in Pinus strobus Stands

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Hwa-Yong

    2016-01-01

    The genets of Suillus granulatus in a Pinus strobus stand (13 m × 60 m) were identified using random amplified polymorphic DNA molecular markers and the DNA of mushrooms that fruited for two years, and variations in genet size and distribution were analyzed. From a total of 116 mushrooms, 73 genets were identified and were grouped into three locations. The genets of mushrooms in close proximity differed from each other. The genet sizes varied at any of the three locations. The lengths of the identified genets in the pine stand ranged from 0.09 to 2.90 m. The average number of mushrooms per genet was 1.2 to 2.3, and the percentage of genets that were represented by a single mushroom was 44% to 94%. This variation in the genets of mushrooms in close proximity suggests that the ectomycorrhizal mycelial bodies of S. granulatus propagated sexually by fusing haploid spores derived from the mushrooms gills with below-ground mycelia. Therefore, it is necessary further to investigate the formation of new genets through spores in ectomycorrhizal fungal colonies. PMID:27103849

  9. Genet Variation of Ectomycorrhizal Suillus granulatus Fruiting Bodies in Pinus strobus Stands.

    PubMed

    Lee, Hwa-Yong; Koo, Chang-Duck

    2016-03-01

    The genets of Suillus granulatus in a Pinus strobus stand (13 m × 60 m) were identified using random amplified polymorphic DNA molecular markers and the DNA of mushrooms that fruited for two years, and variations in genet size and distribution were analyzed. From a total of 116 mushrooms, 73 genets were identified and were grouped into three locations. The genets of mushrooms in close proximity differed from each other. The genet sizes varied at any of the three locations. The lengths of the identified genets in the pine stand ranged from 0.09 to 2.90 m. The average number of mushrooms per genet was 1.2 to 2.3, and the percentage of genets that were represented by a single mushroom was 44% to 94%. This variation in the genets of mushrooms in close proximity suggests that the ectomycorrhizal mycelial bodies of S. granulatus propagated sexually by fusing haploid spores derived from the mushrooms gills with below-ground mycelia. Therefore, it is necessary further to investigate the formation of new genets through spores in ectomycorrhizal fungal colonies. PMID:27103849

  10. INTERINDIVIDUAL VARIATION IN THE METABOLISM OF ARSENIC IN HUMAN HEPATOCYTES

    EPA Science Inventory


    The liver is the major site for the enzymatic methylation of inorganic arsenic (iAs) in humans. Primary cultures of normal human hepatocytes isolated from tissue obtained at surgery or from donor livers have been used to study interindividual variation in the capacity of live...

  11. Macrogeographic genetic variation in broad-snouted caiman (Caiman latirostris).

    PubMed

    Villela, Priscilla Marqui Schmidt; Coutinho, Luiz Lehmann; Piña, Carlos Ignacio; Verdade, Luciano M

    2008-12-01

    Broad-snouted caiman's (Caiman latirostris) geographic distribution comprises one of the widest latitudinal ranges among all crocodilians. In this study we analyzed the relationship between geographic distance (along the species latitudinal range) and genetic differentiation using DNA microsatellite loci developed for C. latirostris and Alligator mississippiensis. The results suggest that there is a consistent relationship between geographic distance and genetic differentiation; however, other biogeographical factors seem to be relevant. The Atlantic Chain (Serra do Mar) seems to be an effective geographic barrier, as well as the relatively narrow (< or =1.5 km) sea channel between Cardoso Island and the continent. In addition, coastal populations seem to have been well connected in recent geological time (Pleistocene 16,000 years ago) all along the eastern Brazilian coast. Further studies should focus on the São Francisco River drainage, which is still poorly known for this species. PMID:18661469

  12. Genetic variation and structure of house sparrow populations: is there an island effect?

    PubMed

    Jensen, Henrik; Moe, Rune; Hagen, Ingerid Julie; Holand, Anna Marie; Kekkonen, Jaana; Tufto, Jarle; Saether, Bernt-Erik

    2013-04-01

    Population genetic structure and intrapopulation levels of genetic variation have important implications for population dynamics and evolutionary processes. Habitat fragmentation is one of the major threats to biodiversity. It leads to smaller population sizes and reduced gene flow between populations and will thus also affect genetic structure. We use a natural system of island and mainland populations of house sparrows along the coast of Norway to characterize the different population genetic properties of fragmented populations. We genotyped 636 individuals distributed across 14 populations at 15 microsatellite loci. The level of genetic differentiation was estimated using F-statistics and specially designed Mantel tests were conducted to study the influence of population type (i.e. mainland or island) and geographic distance on the genetic population structure. Furthermore, the effects of population type, population size and latitude on the level of genetic variation within populations were examined. Our results suggest that genetic processes on islands and mainland differed in two important ways. First, the intrapopulation level of genetic variation tended to be lower and the occurrence of population bottlenecks more frequent on islands than the mainland. Second, although the general level of genetic differentiation was low to moderate, it was higher between island populations than between mainland populations. However, differentiation increased in mainland populations somewhat faster with geographical distance. These results suggest that population bottleneck events and genetic drift have been more important in shaping the genetic composition of island populations compared with populations on the mainland. Such knowledge is relevant for a better understanding of evolutionary processes and conservation of threatened populations. PMID:23379682

  13. Genetic Variation Determines PPARγ Function and Anti-diabetic Drug Response In Vivo.

    PubMed

    Soccio, Raymond E; Chen, Eric R; Rajapurkar, Satyajit R; Safabakhsh, Pegah; Marinis, Jill M; Dispirito, Joanna R; Emmett, Matthew J; Briggs, Erika R; Fang, Bin; Everett, Logan J; Lim, Hee-Woong; Won, Kyoung-Jae; Steger, David J; Wu, Ying; Civelek, Mete; Voight, Benjamin F; Lazar, Mitchell A

    2015-07-01

    SNPs affecting disease risk often reside in non-coding genomic regions. Here, we show that SNPs are highly enriched at mouse strain-selective adipose tissue binding sites for PPARγ, a nuclear receptor for anti-diabetic drugs. Many such SNPs alter binding motifs for PPARγ or cooperating factors and functionally regulate nearby genes whose expression is strain selective and imbalanced in heterozygous F1 mice. Moreover, genetically determined binding of PPARγ accounts for mouse strain-specific transcriptional effects of TZD drugs, providing proof of concept for personalized medicine related to nuclear receptor genomic occupancy. In human fat, motif-altering SNPs cause differential PPARγ binding, provide a molecular mechanism for some expression quantitative trait loci, and are risk factors for dysmetabolic traits in genome-wide association studies. One PPARγ motif-altering SNP is associated with HDL levels and other metabolic syndrome parameters. Thus, natural genetic variation in PPARγ genomic occupancy determines individual disease risk and drug response. PMID:26140591

  14. Achilles' heel of pluripotent stem cells: genetic, genomic and epigenetic variations during prolonged culture.

    PubMed

    Rebuzzini, Paola; Zuccotti, Maurizio; Redi, Carlo Alberto; Garagna, Silvia

    2016-07-01

    Pluripotent stem cells differentiate into almost any specialized adult cell type of an organism. PSCs can be derived either from the inner cell mass of a blastocyst-giving rise to embryonic stem cells-or after reprogramming of somatic terminally differentiated cells to obtain ES-like cells, named induced pluripotent stem cells. The potential use of these cells in the clinic, for investigating in vitro early embryonic development or for screening the effects of new drugs or xenobiotics, depends on capability to maintain their genome integrity during prolonged culture and differentiation. Both human and mouse PSCs are prone to genomic and (epi)genetic instability during in vitro culture, a feature that seriously limits their real potential use. Culture-induced variations of specific chromosomes or genes, are almost all unpredictable and, as a whole, differ among independent cell lines. They may arise at different culture passages, suggesting the absence of a safe passage number maintaining genome integrity and rendering the control of genomic stability mandatory since the very early culture passages. The present review highlights the urgency for further studies on the mechanisms involved in determining (epi)genetic and chromosome instability, exploiting the knowledge acquired earlier on other cell types. PMID:26961132

  15. Footprints of ancient-balanced polymorphisms in genetic variation data from closely related species

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Ziyue; Przeworski, Molly; Sella, Guy

    2015-01-01

    When long-lasting, balancing selection can lead to “trans-species” polymorphisms that are shared by two or more species identical by descent. In such cases, the gene genealogy at the selected site clusters by allele instead of by species, and nearby neutral sites also have unusual genealogies because of linkage. While this scenario is expected to leave discernible footprints in genetic variation data, the specific patterns remain poorly characterized. Motivated by recent findings in primates, we focus on the case of a biallelic polymorphism under ancient balancing selection and derive approximations for summaries of the polymorphism data from two species. Specifically, we characterize the length of the segment that carries most of the footprints, the expected number of shared neutral single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), and the patterns of allelic associations among them. We confirm the accuracy of our approximations by coalescent simulations. We further show that for humans and chimpanzees—more generally, for pairs of species with low genetic diversity levels—these patterns are highly unlikely to be generated by neutral recurrent mutations. We discuss the implications for the design and interpretation of genome scans for ancient balanced polymorphisms in primates and other taxa. PMID:25403856

  16. Footprints of ancient-balanced polymorphisms in genetic variation data from closely related species.

    PubMed

    Gao, Ziyue; Przeworski, Molly; Sella, Guy

    2015-02-01

    When long-lasting, balancing selection can lead to "trans-species" polymorphisms that are shared by two or more species identical by descent. In such cases, the gene genealogy at the selected site clusters by allele instead of by species, and nearby neutral sites also have unusual genealogies because of linkage. While this scenario is expected to leave discernible footprints in genetic variation data, the specific patterns remain poorly characterized. Motivated by recent findings in primates, we focus on the case of a biallelic polymorphism under ancient balancing selection and derive approximations for summaries of the polymorphism data from two species. Specifically, we characterize the length of the segment that carries most of the footprints, the expected number of shared neutral single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), and the patterns of allelic associations among them. We confirm the accuracy of our approximations by coalescent simulations. We further show that for humans and chimpanzees-more generally, for pairs of species with low genetic diversity levels-these patterns are highly unlikely to be generated by neutral recurrent mutations. We discuss the implications for the design and interpretation of genome scans for ancient balanced polymorphisms in primates and other taxa. PMID:25403856

  17. Genetic Changes Shaping the Human Brain

    PubMed Central

    Bae, Byoung-il; Jayaraman, Divya; Walsh, Christopher A.

    2015-01-01

    Summary The development and function of our brain are governed by a genetic blueprint, which reflects dynamic changes over the history of evolution. Recent progress in genetics and genomics, facilitated by next-generation sequencing and single-cell sorting, has identified numerous genomic loci that are associated with a neuroanatomical or neurobehavioral phenotype. Here, we review some of the genetic changes in both protein-coding and noncoding regions that affect brain development and evolution, as well as recent progress in brain transcriptomics. Understanding these genetic changes may provide novel insights into neurological and neuropsychiatric disorders, such as autism and schizophrenia. PMID:25710529

  18. 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

  19. On the relative roles of background selection and genetic hitchhiking in shaping human cytomegalovirus genetic diversity.

    PubMed

    Renzette, Nicholas; Kowalik, Timothy F; Jensen, Jeffrey D

    2016-01-01

    A central focus of population genetics has been examining the contribution of selective and neutral processes in shaping patterns of intraspecies diversity. In terms of selection specifically, surveys of higher organisms have shown considerable variation in the relative contributions of background selection and genetic hitchhiking in shaping the distribution of polymorphisms, although these analyses have rarely been extended to bacteria and viruses. Here, we study the evolution of a ubiquitous, viral pathogen, human cytomegalovirus (HCMV), by analysing the relationship among intraspecies diversity, interspecies divergence and rates of recombination. We show that there is a strong correlation between diversity and divergence, consistent with expectations of neutral evolution. However, after correcting for divergence, there remains a significant correlation between intraspecies diversity and recombination rates, with additional analyses suggesting that this correlation is largely due to the effects of background selection. In addition, a small number of loci, centred on long noncoding RNAs, also show evidence of selective sweeps. These data suggest that HCMV evolution is dominated by neutral mechanisms as well as background selection, expanding our understanding of linked selection to a novel class of organisms. PMID:26211679

  20. Deterministic Mutation Rate Variation in the Human Genome

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Nick G.C.; Webster, Matthew T.; Ellegren, Hans

    2002-01-01

    Several studies of substitution rate variation have indicated that the local mutation rate varies over the mammalian genome. In the present study, we show significant variation in substitution rates within the noncoding part of the human genome using 4.7 Mb of human-chimpanzee pairwise comparisons. Moreover, we find a significant positive covariation of lineage-specific chimpanzee and human local substitution rates, and very similar mean substitution rates down the two lineages. The substitution rate variation is probably not caused by selection or biased gene conversion, and so we conclude that mutation rates vary deterministically across the noncoding nonrepetitive regions of the human genome. We also show that noncoding substitution rates are significantly affected by G+C base composition, partly because the base composition is not at equilibrium. PMID:12213772

  1. Genetic diversity is related to climatic variation and vulnerability in threatened bull trout

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kovach, Ryan; Muhlfeld, Clint C.; Wade, Alisa A.; Hand, Brian K.; Whited, Diane C.; DeHaan, Patrick W.; Al-Chokhachy, Robert K.; Luikart, Gordon

    2015-01-01

    Understanding how climatic variation influences ecological and evolutionary processes is crucial for informed conservation decision-making. Nevertheless, few studies have measured how climatic variation influences genetic diversity within populations or how genetic diversity is distributed across space relative to future climatic stress. Here, we tested whether patterns of genetic diversity (allelic richness) were related to climatic variation and habitat features in 130 bull trout (Salvelinus confluentus) populations from 24 watersheds (i.e., ~4–7th order river subbasins) across the Columbia River Basin, USA. We then determined whether bull trout genetic diversity was related to climate vulnerability at the watershed scale, which we quantified on the basis of exposure to future climatic conditions (projected scenarios for the 2040s) and existing habitat complexity. We found a strong gradient in genetic diversity in bull trout populations across the Columbia River Basin, where populations located in the most upstream headwater areas had the greatest genetic diversity. After accounting for spatial patterns with linear mixed models, allelic richness in bull trout populations was positively related to habitat patch size and complexity, and negatively related to maximum summer temperature and the frequency of winter flooding. These relationships strongly suggest that climatic variation influences evolutionary processes in this threatened species and that genetic diversity will likely decrease due to future climate change. Vulnerability at a watershed scale was negatively correlated with average genetic diversity (r = −0.77;P < 0.001); watersheds containing populations with lower average genetic diversity generally had the lowest habitat complexity, warmest stream temperatures, and greatest frequency of winter flooding. Together, these findings have important conservation implications for bull trout and other imperiled species. Genetic diversity is already

  2. Genetics of focal segmental glomerulosclerosis and HIV-associated collapsing glomerulopathy: the role of MYH9 genetic variation

    PubMed Central

    Winkler, Cheryl A.; Nelson, George; Oleksyk, Taras K.; Nava, M. Berenice; Kopp, Jeffrey B.

    2010-01-01

    Until recently knowledge of genetic causes of glomerular disease was limited to certain rare or uncommon inherited diseases, and to a genes, either rare or with small effect, identified in candidate gene studies. These genetic factors accounted for only a very small fraction of kidney disease. However, the striking differences in frequency of many forms of kidney disease between African Americans and European Americans, which could not be completely explained by cultural or economic factors, pointed to a large unidentified genetic influence. Since FSGS and HIV-associated collapsing glomerulopathy (HVAN) have striking racial disparities, we performed an admixture mapping study to identify contributing genetic factors. Admixture mapping identified genetic variants in the non-muscle myosin gene MYH9 as having an extreme influence on both FSGS and HIVAN, with odds ratios from 4 to 8 and attributable fractions of 70–100%. Previously identified, rare inherited MYH9 disorders point to a mechanism by which MYH9 variation disrupts the actin-myosin filaments responsible for maintaining the structure of podocytes, the cells that provide one of three filtration barriers in the glomeruli. MYH9 variation has a smaller but still highly significant effect on non-diabetic kidney disease, and a weaker but significant effect on diabetic kidney disease; it is unclear whether underlying cryptic FSGS is responsible for the MYH9 association with these diseases. The strong predicted power of MYH9 variation for disease indicates a clear role for genetic testing for these variants in personalized medicine, for assessment of genetic risk, and potentially for diagnosis. PMID:20347641

  3. Human genetics in Johannesburg, South Africa: past, present and future.

    PubMed

    Kromberg, Jennifer G R; Krause, Amanda

    2013-12-01

    Genetic services were set up in Johannesburg, South Africa, in the late 1960s, but only became widespread and formalised after the first Professor of Human Genetics, Trefor Jenkins, was installed at the University of the Witwatersrand in 1974. The first services involved chromosome studies, and these developed into genetic counselling services. Prenatal diagnosis began to be offered, particularly for older women at risk for chromosome abnormalities in the fetus, and those at risk for neural tube defects. Genetic screening was then initiated for the Jewish community because of their high carrier rate for Tay-Sachs disease. Educational courses in human genetics were offered at Wits Medical School, and medical as well as other health professionals began to be trained. Research, supported by national and international bodies, was integral in the activities of the Department (now Division) of Human Genetics and focused on genetic conditions affecting the generally understudied black community. In the late 1980s the first training programme for genetic counsellors was started at MSc level, and postgraduate scientists at MSc and PhD levels studied in and qualified through the Department. At the same time molecular genetic laboratories were set up. In the late 1990s training for medical geneticists was initiated. Extensive high-quality genetic services developed over the four decades were comparable to those of most other departments in developed countries.  PMID:24300637

  4. Survey of variation in human transcription factors reveals prevalent DNA binding changes.

    PubMed

    Barrera, Luis A; Vedenko, Anastasia; Kurland, Jesse V; Rogers, Julia M; Gisselbrecht, Stephen S; Rossin, Elizabeth J; Woodard, Jaie; Mariani, Luca; Kock, Kian Hong; Inukai, Sachi; Siggers, Trevor; Shokri, Leila; Gordân, Raluca; Sahni, Nidhi; Cotsapas, Chris; Hao, Tong; Yi, Song; Kellis, Manolis; Daly, Mark J; Vidal, Marc; Hill, David E; Bulyk, Martha L

    2016-03-25

    Sequencing of exomes and genomes has revealed abundant genetic variation affecting the coding sequences of human transcription factors (TFs), but the consequences of such variation remain largely unexplored. We developed a computational, structure-based approach to evaluate TF variants for their impact on DNA binding activity and used universal protein-binding microarrays to assay sequence-specific DNA binding activity across 41 reference and 117 variant alleles found in individuals of diverse ancestries and families with Mendelian diseases. We found 77 variants in 28 genes that affect DNA binding affinity or specificity and identified thousands of rare alleles likely to alter the DNA binding activity of human sequence-specific TFs. Our results suggest that most individuals have unique repertoires of TF DNA binding activities, which may contribute to phenotypic variation. PMID:27013732

  5. Functional and genetic analysis of haplotypic sequence variation at the nicastrin genomic locus

    PubMed Central

    Hamilton, Gillian; Killick, Richard; Lambert, Jean-Charles; Amouyel, Philippe; Carrasquillo, Minerva M.; Pankratz, V. Shane; Graff-Radford, Neill R.; Dickson, Dennis W.; Petersen, Ronald C.; Younkin, Steven G.; Powell, John F.; Wade-Martins, Richard

    2013-01-01

    Nicastrin (NCSTN) is a component of the γ-secretase complex and therefore potentially a candidate risk gene for Alzheimer's disease. Here, we have developed a novel functional genomics methodology to express common locus haplotypes to assess functional differences. DNA recombination was used to engineer 5 bacterial artificial chromosomes (BACs) to each express a different haplotype of the NCSTN locus. Each NCSTN-BAC was delivered to knockout nicastrin (Ncstn−/−) cells and clonal NCSTN-BAC+/Ncstn−/− cell lines were created for functional analyses. We showed that all NCSTN-BAC haplotypes expressed nicastrin protein and rescued γ-secretase activity and amyloid beta (Aβ) production in NCSTN-BAC+/Ncstn−/− lines. We then showed that genetic variation at the NCSTN locus affected alternative splicing in human postmortem brain tissue. However, there was no robust functional difference between clonal cell lines rescued by each of the 5 different haplotypes. Finally, there was no statistically significant association of NCSTN with disease risk in the 4 cohorts. We therefore conclude that it is unlikely that common variation at the NCSTN locus is a risk factor for Alzheimer's disease. PMID:22405046

  6. Association between OPN genetic variations and nephrolithiasis risk

    PubMed Central

    Xiao, Xu; Dong, Zhenjia; Ye, Xianqing; Yan, Yao; Chen, Xuehua; Pan, Qin; Xie, Yongfeng; Xie, Jie; Wang, Qiangdong; Yuan, Qinbo

    2016-01-01

    Osteopontin (OPN) has an important role in urolithiasis. However, few studies have explored the association between OPN genetic variants and urolithiasis risk. In the present study, three single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) (rs28357094, rs11439060 and rs11730582) located on the promoter of OPN were genotyped in a total of 480 individuals, including 230 nephrolithiasis patients and 250 matched healthy controls, and the associations between these SNPs and nephrolithiasis risk in different genetic models was assessed. No significant differences were identified in the genotype and allele frequencies of OPN rs28357094 or rs11730582 (P=0.805 for rs28357094; P=0.577 for rs11730582, respectively). However, carriers with the OPN rs11439060 insertion (ins) types (ins/deletion and ins/ins) were overrepresented in urolithiasis patients compared with the controls [odds ratio (OR), 1.55; 95% confidence interval (CI), 1.08–2.22]. In the stratified analysis, the increased risk was more evident among younger subjects (adjusted OR, 1.68; 95% CI, 1.01–2.81), females (2.15; 1.14–4.08), overweight subjects (1.80; 1.07–3.05), normotensive subjects (2.48; 1.02–6.00), abnormal blood sugar subjects (1.58; 1.08–2.30), smokers (1.63; 1.02–2.60), and ever-drinkers (1.98; 1.10–3.60).. These findings revealed that the OPN rs11439060 polymorphism may act as genetic biomarker for the detection of high-risk nephrolithiasis patients. PMID:27602211

  7. Efficient genotype compression and analysis of large genetic variation datasets

    PubMed Central

    Layer, Ryan M.; Kindlon, Neil; Karczewski, Konrad J.; Quinlan, Aaron R.

    2015-01-01

    Genotype Query Tools (GQT) is a new indexing strategy that expedites analyses of genome variation datasets in VCF format based on sample genotypes, phenotypes and relationships. GQT’s compressed genotype index minimizes decompression for analysis, and performance relative to existing methods improves with cohort size. We show substantial (up to 443 fold) performance gains over existing methods and demonstrate GQT’s utility for exploring massive datasets involving thousands to millions of genomes. PMID:26550772

  8. Patterns of Neutral Genetic Variation on Recombining Sex Chromosomes

    PubMed Central

    Kirkpatrick, Mark; Guerrero, Rafael F.; Scarpino, Samuel V.

    2010-01-01

    Many animals and plants have sex chromosomes that recombine over much of their length. Here we develop coalescent models for neutral sites on these chromosomes. The emphasis is on expected coalescence times (proportional to the expected amount of neutral genetic polymorphism), but we also derive some results for linkage disequilibria between neutral sites. We analyze the standard neutral model, a model with polymorphic Y chromosomes under balancing selection, and the invasion of a neo-Y chromosome. The results may be useful for testing hypotheses regarding how new sex chromosomes originate and how selection acts upon them. PMID:20124026

  9. Genetically Controlled Variation of "Acid" β-Galactosidase Detected in Rattus norvegicus by Isoelectric Focusing

    PubMed Central

    Douglas, Tommy C.; Kimmel, Kathryn A.; Dawson, Patti E.

    1982-01-01

    Two genetically variant forms of rat "acid" β-galactosidase were found to differ in isoelectric point and pH dependence, but not in thermostability or sensitivity to inhibition by p-mercuribenzoate (PMB). The results of two backcrosses and an intercross indicated that the isoelectric focusing phenotypes are controlled by two codominant alleles at a single autosomal locus, for which we propose the name Glb-1. No significant linkage between Glb-1 and albino (LG I), brown (LG II), or hooded (LG VI) was observed. Strain-specific differences in total levels of kidney β-galactosidase were detected, but it is not yet known whether the variation is controlled by genes linked to Glb-1. Experiments in which organ homogenates were incubated with neuraminidase indicated that the genetically variant forms do not result from differences in sialylation, though sialylation does appear to be largely responsible for the presence of multiple bands within each phenotype and for differences in the banding patterns of β-galactosidases derived from different organs. The β-galactosidase present in the bands used for Glb-1 typing resembles human GM1 gangliosidase (GLB1) with respect to pH optimum, substrate specificity, and susceptibility to inhibition by PMB. It also appears that Glb-1 is homologous with the Bgl-e locus of the mouse. In rats as in mice the genetically variant bands of β-galactosidase are active at acid pH and have relatively high isoelectric points. In both species these bands are readily detectable in kidney homogenates, and can be revealed in homogenates of liver or spleen following treatment with neuraminidase. The presence of the same β-galactosidase bands in homogenates of rat kidney and small intestine as well as in neuraminidase-treated homogenates of liver and spleen suggests that the Glb-1 variants differ by one or more point mutations in the structural gene for "acid" β-galactosidase. PMID:6811372

  10. Population size is weakly related to quantitative genetic variation and trait differentiation in a stream fish.

    PubMed

    Wood, Jacquelyn L A; Tezel, Defne; Joyal, Destin; Fraser, Dylan J

    2015-09-01

    How population size influences quantitative genetic variation and differentiation among natural, fragmented populations remains unresolved. Small, isolated populations might occupy poor quality habitats and lose genetic variation more rapidly due to genetic drift than large populations. Genetic drift might furthermore overcome selection as population size decreases. Collectively, this might result in directional changes in additive genetic variation (VA ) and trait differentiation (QST ) from small to large population size. Alternatively, small populations might exhibit larger variation in VA and QST if habitat fragmentation increases variability in habitat types. We explored these alternatives by investigating VA and QST using nine fragmented populations of brook trout varying 50-fold in census size N (179-8416) and 10-fold in effective number of breeders, Nb (18-135). Across 15 traits, no evidence was found for consistent differences in VA and QST with population size and almost no evidence for increased variability of VA or QST estimates at small population size. This suggests that (i) small populations of some species may retain adaptive potential according to commonly adopted quantitative genetic measures and (ii) populations of varying sizes experience a variety of environmental conditions in nature, however extremely large studies are likely required before any firm conclusions can be made. PMID:26207947

  11. A High-Definition View of Functional Genetic Variation from Natural Yeast Genomes

    PubMed Central

    Bergström, Anders; Simpson, Jared T.; Salinas, Francisco; Barré, Benjamin; Parts, Leopold; Zia, Amin; Nguyen Ba, Alex N.; Moses, Alan M.; Louis, Edward J.; Mustonen, Ville; Warringer, Jonas; Durbin, Richard; Liti, Gianni

    2014-01-01

    The question of how genetic variation in a population influences phenotypic variation and evolution is of major importance in modern biology. Yet much is still unknown about the relative functional importance of different forms of genome variation and how they are shaped by evolutionary processes. Here we address these questions by population level sequencing of 42 strains from the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae and its closest relative S. paradoxus. We find that genome content variation, in the form of presence or absence as well as copy number of genetic material, is higher within S. cerevisiae than within S. paradoxus, despite genetic distances as measured in single-nucleotide polymorphisms being vastly smaller within the former species. This genome content variation, as well as loss-of-function variation in the form of premature stop codons and frameshifting indels, is heavily enriched in the subtelomeres, strongly reinforcing the relevance of these regions to functional evolution. Genes affected by these likely functional forms of variation are enriched for functions mediating interaction with the external environment (sugar transport and metabolism, flocculation, metal transport, and metabolism). Our results and analyses provide a comprehensive view of genomic diversity in budding yeast and expose surprising and pronounced differences between the variation within S. cerevisiae and that within S. paradoxus. We also believe that the sequence data and de novo assemblies will constitute a useful resource for further evolutionary and population genomics studies. PMID:24425782

  12. How the Magnitude of Prey Genetic Variation Alters Predator-Prey Eco-Evolutionary Dynamics.

    PubMed

    Cortez, Michael H

    2016-09-01

    Evolution can alter the stability and dynamics of ecological communities; for example, prey evolution can drive cyclic dynamics in predator-prey systems that are not possible in the absence of evolution. However, it is unclear how the magnitude of additive genetic variation in the evolving species mediates those effects. In this study, I explore how the magnitude of prey additive genetic variation determines what effects prey evolution has on the dynamics and stability of predator-prey systems. I use linear stability analysis to decompose the stability of a general eco-evolutionary predator-prey model into components representing the stabilities of the ecological and evolutionary subsystems as well as the interactions between those subsystems. My results show that with low genetic variation, the cyclic dynamics and stability of the system are determined by the ecological subsystem. With increased genetic variation, disruptive selection always destabilizes stable communities, stabilizing selection can stabilize or destabilize communities, and prey evolution can alter predator-prey phase lags. Stability changes occur approximately when the magnitude of genetic variation balances the (in)stabilities of the ecological and evolutionary subsystems. I discuss the connections between my stability results and prior results from the theory of adaptive dynamics. PMID:27501090

  13. Genetic Variation Shapes Protein Networks Mainly through Non-transcriptional Mechanisms

    PubMed Central

    Foss, Eric J.; Radulovic, Dragan; Shaffer, Scott A.; Goodlett, David R.; Kruglyak, Leonid; Bedalov, Antonio

    2011-01-01

    Networks of co-regulated transcripts in genetically diverse populations have been studied extensively, but little is known about the degree to which these networks cause similar co-variation at the protein level. We quantified 354 proteins in a genetically diverse population of yeast segregants, which allowed for the first time construction of a coherent protein co-variation matrix. We identified tightly co-regulated groups of 36 and 93 proteins that were made up predominantly of genes involved in ribosome biogenesis and amino acid metabolism, respectively. Even though the ribosomal genes were tightly co-regulated at both the protein and transcript levels, genetic regulation of proteins was entirely distinct from that of transcripts, and almost no genes in this network showed a significant correlation between protein and transcript levels. This result calls into question the widely held belief that in yeast, as opposed to higher eukaryotes, ribosomal protein levels are regulated primarily by regulating transcript levels. Furthermore, although genetic regulation of the amino acid network was more similar for proteins and transcripts, regression analysis demonstrated that even here, proteins vary predominantly as a result of non-transcriptional variation. We also found that cis regulation, which is common in the transcriptome, is rare at the level of the proteome. We conclude that most inter-individual variation in levels of these particular high abundance proteins in this genetically diverse population is not caused by variation of their underlying transcripts. PMID:21909241

  14. Competition among eucalyptus trees depends on genetic variation and resource supply.

    PubMed

    Boyden, Suzanne; Binkley, Dan; Stape, José Luiz

    2008-10-01

    Genetic variation and environmental heterogeneity fundamentally shape the interactions between plants of the same species. According to the resource partitioning hypothesis, competition between neighbors intensifies as their similarity increases. Such competition may change in response to increasing supplies of limiting resources. We tested the resource partitioning hypothesis in stands of genetically identical (clone-origin) and genetically diverse (seed-origin) Eucalyptus trees with different water and nutrient supplies, using individual-based tree growth models. We found that genetic variation greatly reduced competitive interactions between neighboring trees, supporting the resource partitioning hypothesis. The importance of genetic variation for Eucalyptus growth patterns depended strongly on local stand structure and focal tree size. This suggests that spatial and temporal variation in the strength of species interactions leads to reversals in the growth rank of seed-origin and clone-origin trees. This study is one of the first to experimentally test the resource partitioning hypothesis for intergenotypic vs. intragenotypic interactions in trees. We provide evidence that variation at the level of genes, and not just species, is functionally important for driving individual and community-level processes in forested ecosystems. PMID:18959322

  15. Genetic and Ontogenetic Variation in an Endangered Tree Structures Dependent Arthropod and Fungal Communities

    PubMed Central

    Gosney, Benjamin J.; O′Reilly-Wapstra, Julianne M.; Forster, Lynne G.; Barbour, Robert C.; Iason, Glenn R.; Potts, Brad M.

    2014-01-01

    Plant genetic and ontogenetic variation can significantly impact dependent fungal and arthropod communities. However, little is known of the relative importance of these extended genetic and ontogenetic effects within a species. Using a common garden trial, we compared the dependent arthropod and fungal community on 222 progeny from two highly differentiated populations of the endangered heteroblastic tree species, Eucalyptus morrisbyi. We assessed arthropod and fungal communities on both juvenile and adult foliage. The community variation was related to previous levels of marsupial browsing, as well as the variation in the physicochemical properties of leaves using near-infrared spectroscopy. We found highly significant differences in community composition, abundance and diversity parameters between eucalypt source populations in the common garden, and these were comparable to differences between the distinctive juvenile and adult foliage. The physicochemical properties assessed accounted for a significant percentage of the community variation but did not explain fully the community differences between populations and foliage types. Similarly, while differences in population susceptibility to a major marsupial herbivore may result in diffuse genetic effects on the dependent community, this still did not account for the large genetic-based differences in dependent communities between populations. Our results emphasize the importance of maintaining the populations of this rare species as separate management units, as not only are the populations highly genetically structured, this variation may alter the trajectory of biotic colonization of conservation plantings. PMID:25469641

  16. Genetic and ontogenetic variation in an endangered tree structures dependent arthropod and fungal communities.

    PubMed

    Gosney, Benjamin J; O Reilly-Wapstra, Julianne M; Forster, Lynne G; Barbour, Robert C; Iason, Glenn R; Potts, Brad M

    2014-01-01

    Plant genetic and ontogenetic variation can significantly impact dependent fungal and arthropod communities. However, little is known of the relative importance of these extended genetic and ontogenetic effects within a species. Using a common garden trial, we compared the dependent arthropod and fungal community on 222 progeny from two highly differentiated populations of the endangered heteroblastic tree species, Eucalyptus morrisbyi. We assessed arthropod and fungal communities on both juvenile and adult foliage. The community variation was related to previous levels of marsupial browsing, as well as the variation in the physicochemical properties of leaves using near-infrared spectroscopy. We found highly significant differences in community composition, abundance and diversity parameters between eucalypt source populations in the common garden, and these were comparable to differences between the distinctive juvenile and adult foliage. The physicochemical properties assessed accounted for a significant percentage of the community variation but did not explain fully the community differences between populations and foliage types. Similarly, while differences in population susceptibility to a major marsupial herbivore may result in diffuse genetic effects on the dependent community, this still did not account for the large genetic-based differences in dependent communities between populations. Our results emphasize the importance of maintaining the populations of this rare species as separate management units, as not only are the populations highly genetically structured, this variation may alter the trajectory of biotic colonization of conservation plantings. PMID:25469641

  17. Genetic variation and population genetic structure of Rhizophora apiculata (Rhizophoraceae) in the Greater Sunda Islands, Indonesia using microsatellite markers.

    PubMed

    Yahya, Andi Fadly; Hyun, Jung Oh; Lee, Jae Ho; Kim, Yong Yul; Lee, Kyung Mi; Hong, Kyung Nak; Kim, Seung-Chul

    2014-03-01

    Genetic variations within and among Rhizophora apiculata populations in the Greater Sunda Islands of Indonesia were studied using microsatellite markers. The study found 38 alleles on five loci in 15 populations. The observed (H(o)) and expected (H(e)) heterozygosity values are 0.338 and 0.378, respectively. Inbreeding effect from self-pollination might explain its heterozygote deficiency. Population genetic differentiation (F(ST) = 0.381) was similar to other mangrove species. The genetic diversity of R. apiculata populations along the coastline inside the archipelago (e.g., Buleleng, Donggala, Mamuju, and Takalar) was higher than those of population along the coastline outside the archipelago, especially northern Sumatra populations (i.e., Langkat, Tapanuli Tengah, Dumai, and Padang). The isolation by distances and sea currents directions as well as their connectivity might affect the gene flow and genetic exchange. The more isolated with fewer connections by sea currents, the smaller gene flow and genetic exchange observed between populations. The higher genetic exchange, on the contrary, occurred when population location was closer to the meeting point of the sea currents. The study also showed that the patterns of sea current movement seemed to have influence genetic clustering of populations which fell into three main groups (Sunda Shelf Mangroves) and one isolated population (New Guinea Mangroves). PMID:24323307

  18. Reflections on the Field of Human Genetics: A Call for Increased Disease Genetics Theory

    PubMed Central

    Schrodi, Steven J.

    2016-01-01

    Development of human genetics theoretical models and the integration of those models with experiment and statistical evaluation are critical for scientific progress. This perspective argues that increased effort in disease genetics theory, complementing experimental, and statistical efforts, will escalate the unraveling of molecular etiologies of complex diseases. In particular, the development of new, realistic disease genetics models will help elucidate complex disease pathogenesis, and the predicted patterns in genetic data made by these models will enable the concurrent, more comprehensive statistical testing of multiple aspects of disease genetics predictions, thereby better identifying disease loci. By theoretical human genetics, I intend to encompass all investigations devoted to modeling the heritable architecture underlying disease traits and studies of the resulting principles and dynamics of such models. Hence, the scope of theoretical disease genetics work includes construction and analysis of models describing how disease-predisposing alleles (1) arise, (2) are transmitted across families and populations, and (3) interact with other risk and protective alleles across both the genome and environmental factors to produce disease states. Theoretical work improves insight into viable genetic models of diseases consistent with empirical results from linkage, transmission, and association studies as well as population genetics. Furthermore, understanding the patterns of genetic data expected under realistic disease models will enable more powerful approaches to discover disease-predisposing alleles and additional heritable factors important in common diseases. In spite of the pivotal role of disease genetics theory, such investigation is not particularly vibrant. PMID:27375680

  19. Reflections on the Field of Human Genetics: A Call for Increased Disease Genetics Theory.

    PubMed

    Schrodi, Steven J

    2016-01-01

    Development of human genetics theoretical models and the integration of those models with experiment and statistical evaluation are critical for scientific progress. This perspective argues that increased effort in disease genetics theory, complementing experimental, and statistical efforts, will escalate the unraveling of molecular etiologies of complex diseases. In particular, the development of new, realistic disease genetics models will help elucidate complex disease pathogenesis, and the predicted patterns in genetic data made by these models will enable the concurrent, more comprehensive statistical testing of multiple aspects of disease genetics predictions, thereby better identifying disease loci. By theoretical human genetics, I intend to encompass all investigations devoted to modeling the heritable architecture underlying disease traits and studies of the resulting principles and dynamics of such models. Hence, the scope of theoretical disease genetics work includes construction and analysis of models describing how disease-predisposing alleles (1) arise, (2) are transmitted across families and populations, and (3) interact with other risk and protective alleles across both the genome and environmental factors to produce disease states. Theoretical work improves insight into viable genetic models of diseases consistent with empirical results from linkage, transmission, and association studies as well as population genetics. Furthermore, understanding the patterns of genetic data expected under realistic disease models will enable more powerful approaches to discover disease-predisposing alleles and additional heritable factors important in common diseases. In spite of the pivotal role of disease genetics theory, such investigation is not particularly vibrant. PMID:27375680

  20. Genetic population structure and call variation in a passerine bird, the satin bowerbird, Ptilonorhynchus violaceus.

    PubMed

    Nicholls, J A; Austin, J J; Moritz, C; Goldizen, A W

    2006-06-01

    Geographic variation in vocalizations is widespread in passerine birds, but its origins and maintenance remain unclear. One hypothesis to explain this variation is that it is associated with geographic isolation among populations and therefore should follow a vicariant pattern similar to that typically found in neutral genetic markers. Alternatively, if environmental selection strongly influences vocalizations, then genetic divergence and vocal divergence may be disassociated. This study compared genetic divergence derived from 11 microsatellite markers with a metric of phenotypic divergence derived from male bower advertisement calls. Data were obtained from 16 populations throughout the entire distribution of the satin bowerbird, an Australian wet-forest-restricted passerine. There was no relationship between call divergence and genetic divergence, similar to most other studies on birds with learned vocalizations. Genetic divergence followed a vicariant model of evolution, with the differentiation of isolated populations and isolation-by-distance among continuous populations. Previous work on Ptilonorhynchus violaceus has shown that advertisement call structure is strongly influenced by the acoustic environment of different habitats. Divergence in vocalizations among genetically related populations in different habitats indicates that satin bowerbirds match their vocalizations to the environment in which they live, despite the homogenizing influence of gene flow. In combination with convergence of vocalizations among genetically divergent populations occurring in the same habitat, this shows the overriding importance that habitat-related selection can have on the establishment and maintenance of variation in vocalizations. PMID:16892977

  1. Population genetic consequences of the Allee effect and the role of offspring-number variation.

    PubMed

    Wittmann, Meike J; Gabriel, Wilfried; Metzler, Dirk

    2014-09-01

    A strong demographic Allee effect in which the expected population growth rate is negative below a certain critical population size can cause high extinction probabilities in small introduced populations. But many species are repeatedly introduced to the same location and eventually one population may overcome the Allee effect by chance. With the help of stochastic models, we investigate how much genetic diversity such successful populations harbor on average and how this depends on offspring-number variation, an important source of stochastic variability in population size. We find that with increasing variability, the Allee effect increasingly promotes genetic diversity in successful populations. Successful Allee-effect populations with highly variable population dynamics escape rapidly from the region of small population sizes and do not linger around the critical population size. Therefore, they are exposed to relatively little genetic drift. It is also conceivable, however, that an Allee effect itself leads to an increase in offspring-number variation. In this case, successful populations with an Allee effect can exhibit less genetic diversity despite growing faster at small population sizes. Unlike in many classical population genetics models, the role of offspring-number variation for the population genetic consequences of the Allee effect cannot be accounted for by an effective-population-size correction. Thus, our results highlight the importance of detailed biological knowledge, in this case on the probability distribution of family sizes, when predicting the evolutionary potential of newly founded populations or when using genetic data to reconstruct their demographic history. PMID:25009148

  2. Variation in signal–preference genetic correlations in Enchenopa treehoppers (Hemiptera: Membracidae)

    PubMed Central

    Fowler-Finn, Kasey D; Kilmer, Joseph T; Hallett, Allysa C; Rodríguez, Rafael L

    2015-01-01

    Fisherian selection is a within-population process that promotes signal–preference coevolution and speciation due to signal–preference genetic correlations. The importance of the contribution of Fisherian selection to speciation depends in part on the answer to two outstanding questions: What explains differences in the strength of signal–preference genetic correlations? And, how does the magnitude of within-species signal–preference covariation compare to species differences in signals and preferences? To address these questions, we tested for signal–preference genetic correlations in two members of the Enchenopa binotata complex, a clade of plant-feeding insects wherein speciation involves the colonization of novel host plants and signal–preference divergence. We used a full-sibling, split-family rearing experiment to estimate genetic correlations and to analyze the underlying patterns of variation in signals and preferences. Genetic correlations were weak or zero, but exploration of the underlying patterns of variation in signals and preferences revealed some full-sib families that varied by as much as 50% of the distance between similar species in the E. binotata complex. This result was stronger in the species that showed greater amounts of genetic variation in signals and preferences. We argue that some forms of weak signal–preference genetic correlation may have important evolutionary consequences. PMID:26306166

  3. Variation in signal-preference genetic correlations in Enchenopa treehoppers (Hemiptera: Membracidae).

    PubMed

    Fowler-Finn, Kasey D; Kilmer, Joseph T; Hallett, Allysa C; Rodríguez, Rafael L

    2015-07-01

    Fisherian selection is a within-population process that promotes signal-preference coevolution and speciation due to signal-preference genetic correlations. The importance of the contribution of Fisherian selection to speciation depends in part on the answer to two outstanding questions: What explains differences in the strength of signal-preference genetic correlations? And, how does the magnitude of within-species signal-preference covariation compare to species differences in signals and preferences? To address these questions, we tested for signal-preference genetic correlations in two members of the Enchenopa binotata complex, a clade of plant-feeding insects wherein speciation involves the colonization of novel host plants and signal-preference divergence. We used a full-sibling, split-family rearing experiment to estimate genetic correlations and to analyze the underlying patterns of variation in signals and preferences. Genetic correlations were weak or zero, but exploration of the underlying patterns of variation in signals and preferences revealed some full-sib families that varied by as much as 50% of the distance between similar species in the E. binotata complex. This result was stronger in the species that showed greater amounts of genetic variation in signals and preferences. We argue that some forms of weak signal-preference genetic correlation may have important evolutionary consequences. PMID:26306166

  4. A drosophila genetic resource of mutants to study mechanisms underlying human genetic diseases.

    PubMed

    Yamamoto, Shinya; Jaiswal, Manish; Charng, Wu-Lin; Gambin, Tomasz; Karaca, Ender; Mirzaa, Ghayda; Wiszniewski, Wojciech; Sandoval, Hector; Haelterman, Nele A; Xiong, Bo; Zhang, Ke; Bayat, Vafa; David, Gabriela; Li, Tongchao; Chen, Kuchuan; Gala, Upasana; Harel, Tamar; Pehlivan, Davut; Penney, Samantha; Vissers, Lisenka E L M; de Ligt, Joep; Jhangiani, Shalini N; Xie, Yajing; Tsang, Stephen H; Parman, Yesim; Sivaci, Merve; Battaloglu, Esra; Muzny, Donna; Wan, Ying-Wooi; Liu, Zhandong; Lin-Moore, Alexander T; Clark, Robin D; Curry, Cynthia J; Link, Nichole; Schulze, Karen L; Boerwinkle, Eric; Dobyns, William B; Allikmets, Rando; Gibbs, Richard A; Chen, Rui; Lupski, James R; Wangler, Michael F; Bellen, Hugo J

    2014-09-25

    Invertebrate model systems are powerful tools for studying human disease owing to their genetic tractability and ease of screening. We conducted a mosaic genetic screen of lethal mutations on the Drosophila X chromosome to identify genes required for the development, function, and maintenance of the nervous system. We identified 165 genes, most of whose function has not been studied in vivo. In parallel, we investigated rare variant alleles in 1,929 human exomes from families with unsolved Mendelian disease. Genes that are essential in flies and have multiple human homologs were found to be likely to be associated with human diseases. Merging the human data sets with the fly genes allowed us to identify disease-associated mutations in six families and to provide insights into microcephaly associated with brain dysgenesis. This bidirectional synergism between fly genetics and human genomics facilitates the functional annotation of evolutionarily conserved genes involved in human health. PMID:25259927

  5. A Drosophila genetic resource of mutants to study mechanisms underlying human genetic diseases

    PubMed Central

    Yamamoto, Shinya; Jaiswal, Manish; Charng, Wu-Lin; Gambin, Tomasz; Karaca, Ender; Mirzaa, Ghayda; Wiszniewski, Wojciech; Sandoval, Hector; Haelterman, Nele A.; Xiong, Bo; Zhang, Ke; Bayat, Vafa; David, Gabriela; Li, Tongchao; Chen, Kuchuan; Gala, Upasana; Harel, Tamar; Pehlivan, Davut; Penney, Samantha; Vissers, Lisenka E. L. M.; de Ligt, Joep; Jhangiani, Shalini; Xie, Yajing; Tsang, Stephen H.; Parman, Yesim; Sivaci, Merve; Battaloglu, Esra; Muzny, Donna; Wan, Ying-Wooi; Liu, Zhandong; Lin-Moore, Alexander T.; Clark, Robin D.; Curry, Cynthia J.; Link, Nichole; Schulze, Karen L.; Boerwinkle, Eric; Dobyns, William B.; Allikmets, Rando; Gibbs, Richard A.; Chen, Rui; Lupski, James R.; Wangler, Michael F.; Bellen, Hugo J.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Invertebrate model systems are powerful tools for studying human disease owing to their genetic tractability and ease of screening. We conducted a mosaic genetic screen of lethal mutations on the Drosophila X-chromosome to identify genes required for the development, function, and maintenance of the nervous system. We identified 165 genes, most of whose function has not been studied in vivo. In parallel, we investigated rare variant alleles in 1,929 human exomes from families with unsolved Mendelian disease. Genes that are essential in flies and have multiple human homologs were found to be likely to be associated with human diseases. Merging the human datasets with the fly genes allowed us to identify disease-associated mutations in six families and to provide insights into microcephaly associated with brain dysgenesis. This bidirectional synergism between fly genetics and human genomics facilitates the functional annotation of evolutionarily conserved genes involved in human health. PMID:25259927

  6. Tandem repeat variation in human and great ape populations and its impact on gene expression divergence.

    PubMed

    Bilgin Sonay, Tugce; Carvalho, Tiago; Robinson, Mark D; Greminger, Maja P; Krützen, Michael; Comas, David; Highnam, Gareth; Mittelman, David; Sharp, Andrew; Marques-Bonet, Tomàs; Wagner, Andreas

    2015-11-01

    Tandem repeats (TRs) are stretches of DNA that are highly variable in length and mutate rapidly. They are thus an important source of genetic variation. This variation is highly informative for population and conservation genetics. It has also been associated with several pathological conditions and with gene expression regulation. However, genome-wide surveys of TR variation in humans and closely related species have been scarce due to technical difficulties derived from short-read technology. Here we explored the genome-wide diversity of TRs in a panel of 83 human and nonhuman great ape genomes, in a total of six different species, and studied their impact on gene expression evolution. We found that population diversity patterns can be efficiently captured with short TRs (repeat unit length, 1-5 bp). We examined the potential evolutionary role of TRs in gene expression differences between humans and primates by using 30,275 larger TRs (repeat unit length, 2-50 bp). Genes that contained TRs in the promoters, in their 3' untranslated region, in introns, and in exons had higher expression divergence than genes without repeats in the regions. Polymorphic small repeats (1-5 bp) had also higher expression divergence compared with genes with fixed or no TRs in the gene promoters. Our findings highlight the potential contribution of TRs to human evolution through gene regulation. PMID:26290536

  7. Tandem repeat variation in human and great ape populations and its impact on gene expression divergence

    PubMed Central

    Bilgin Sonay, Tugce; Carvalho, Tiago; Robinson, Mark D.; Greminger, Maja P.; Krützen, Michael; Comas, David; Highnam, Gareth; Mittelman, David; Sharp, Andrew; Marques-Bonet, Tomàs; Wagner, Andreas

    2015-01-01

    Tandem repeats (TRs) are stretches of DNA that are highly variable in length and mutate rapidly. They are thus an important source of genetic variation. This variation is highly informative for population and conservation genetics. It has also been associated with several pathological conditions and with gene expression regulation. However, genome-wide surveys of TR variation in humans and closely related species have been scarce due to technical difficulties derived from short-read technology. Here we explored the genome-wide diversity of TRs in a panel of 83 human and nonhuman great ape genomes, in a total of six different species, and studied their impact on gene expression evolution. We found that population diversity patterns can be efficiently captured with short TRs (repeat unit length, 1–5 bp). We examined the potential evolutionary role of TRs in gene expression differences between humans and primates by using 30,275 larger TRs (repeat unit length, 2–50 bp). Genes that contained TRs in the promoters, in their 3′ untranslated region, in introns, and in exons had higher expression divergence than genes without repeats in the regions. Polymorphic small repeats (1–5 bp) had also higher expression divergence compared with genes with fixed or no TRs in the gene promoters. Our findings highlight the potential contribution of TRs to human evolution through gene regulation. PMID:26290536

  8. Genetic variation of 5 SNPs of MC1R gene in Chinese indigenous sheep breeds.

    PubMed

    Yang, G L; Fu, D L; Lang, X; Ylan, Y F; Luo, Y Z

    2014-10-01

    The purpose of this study was to assess genetic diversity, genetic differentiation.relationship and population structure among 10 Chinese sheep populations using 5 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). in MC1R gene. The genetic diversity indices suggested that the intra-population variation levels of Chinese Merino and Large-tailed Han,breeds were lowest than Kazakh Fat-Rumped. Chinese sheep breeds have maintained a high intra-population variation levels (95.23%). The genetic differentiation patterns and genetic relationships among Chinese sheep breeds displayed a high consistency with the traditional classification. The cluster trees were constructed by UPMGA method. The results showed that Chinese indigenous sheep populations have distinct genetic differentiation. The inter-population variation levels in Chinese sheep populations indicated three geographically independent domestication events have occurred. The Bayesian cluster analyses also showed a reliable clustering pattern, which revealed three major clusters in.Chinese indigenous sheep populations (Mongolian group, Kazakh group and Tibetan group), except for Duolang and Minxian Black-fur. There were probably caused by different breeding history, geography isolation and different levels of inbreeding. The findings supported the related records in literature, ten sheep populations originated on different time stage from the primogenitor population and communicated genetically with each other in the process of natural and artificial selection, and in different ecological environment. It is concluded that Chinese indigenous sheep have higher genetic variation and diversity, genetic differentiation exist between Chinese sheep populations. The majority breeds are consistent with the geographical distribution and breed characteristic. PMID:25720251

  9. Functional modules, mutational load and human genetic disease

    PubMed Central

    Zaghloul, Norann A.; Katsanis, Nicholas

    2013-01-01

    The ability to generate a massive amount of sequencing and genotyping data is transforming the study of human genetic disorders. Driven by such innovation, it is likely that whole exome and whole-genome resequencing will replace regionally focused approaches for gene discovery and clinical testing in the next few years. However, this opportunity brings a significant interpretative challenge to assigning function and phenotypic variance to common and rare alleles. Understanding the effect of individual mutations in the context of the remaining genomic variation represents a major challenge to our interpretation of disease. Here, we discuss the challenges of assigning mutation functionality and, drawing from the examples of ciliopathies as well as cohesinopathies and channelopathies, discuss possibilities for the functional modularization of the human genome. Functional modularization in addition to the development of physiologically-relevant assays to test allele functionality will accelerate our understanding of disease architecture and enable the use of genome-wide sequence data for disease diagnosis and phenotypic prediction in individuals. PMID:20226561

  10. Pigmentation, pleiotropy, and genetic pathways in humans and mice

    SciTech Connect

    Barsh, G.S.

    1995-10-01

    Some of the most striking polymorphisms in human populations affect the color of our eyes, hair, or skin. Despite some simple lessons from high school biology (blue eyes are recessive; brown are dominant), the genetic basis of such phenotypic variability has, for the most part, eluded Mendelian description. A logical place to search for the keys to understanding common variation in human pigmentation are genes in which defects cause uncommon conditions such as albinism or piebaldism. The area under this lamppost has recently gotten larger, with two articles, one in this issue of the Journal, that describe the map position for Hermansky-Pudlak syndrome (HPS) and with the recent cloning of a gene that causes X-linked ocular albinism (OA1). In addition, a series of three recent articles in Cell demonstrate (1) that defects in the gene encoding the endothelin B (ET{sub B}) receptor cause hypopigmentation and Hirschsprung disease in a Mennonite population and the mouse mutation piebald(s) and (2) that a defect in the edn3 gene, which encodes one of the ligands for the ET{sub B} receptor, causes the lethal spotting (ls) mouse mutation. 47 refs., 1 fig.

  11. Genetic variation and dynamics of infections of equid herpesvirus 5 in individual horses.

    PubMed

    Back, Helena; Ullman, Karin; Leijon, Mikael; Söderlund, Robert; Penell, Johanna; Ståhl, Karl; Pringle, John; Valarcher, Jean-François

    2016-01-01

    Equid herpesvirus 5 (EHV-5) is related to the human Epstein-Barr virus (human herpesvirus 4) and has frequently been observed in equine populations worldwide. EHV-5 was previously assumed to be low to non-pathogenic; however, studies have also related the virus to the severe lung disease equine multinodular pulmonary fibrosis (EMPF). Genetic information of EHV-5 is scanty: the whole genome was recently described and only limited nucleotide sequences are available. In this study, samples were taken twice 1 year apart from eight healthy horses at the same professional training yard and samples from a ninth horse that was diagnosed with EMPF with samples taken pre- and post-mortem to analyse partial glycoprotein B (gB) gene of EHV-5 by using next-generation sequencing. The analysis resulted in 27 partial gB gene sequences, 11 unique sequence types and five amino acid sequences. These sequences could be classified within four genotypes (I-IV) of the EHV-5 gB gene based on the degree of similarity of the nucleotide and amino acid sequences, and in this work horses were shown to be identified with up to three different genotypes simultaneously. The observations showed a range of interactions between EHV-5 and the host over time, where the same virus persists in some horses, whereas others have a more dynamic infection pattern including strains from different genotypes. This study provides insight into the genetic variation and dynamics of EHV-5, and highlights that further work is needed to understand the EHV-5 interaction with its host. PMID:26518010

  12. Hotspots for copy number variation in chimpanzees and humans

    PubMed Central

    Perry, George H.; Tchinda, Joelle; McGrath, Sean D.; Zhang, Junjun; Picker, Simon R.; Cáceres, Angela M.; Iafrate, A. John; Tyler-Smith, Chris; Scherer, Stephen W.; Eichler, Evan E.; Stone, Anne C.; Lee, Charles

    2006-01-01

    Copy number variation is surprisingly common among humans and can be involved in phenotypic diversity and variable susceptibility to complex diseases, but little is known of the extent of copy number variation in nonhuman primates. We have used two array-based comparative genomic hybridization platforms to identify a total of 355 copy number variants (CNVs) in the genomes of 20 wild-born chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) and have compared the identified chimpanzee CNVs to known human CNVs from previous studies. Many CNVs were observed in the corresponding regions in both chimpanzees and humans; especially those CNVs of higher frequency. Strikingly, these loci are enriched 20-fold for ancestral segmental duplications, which may facilitate CNV formation through nonallelic homologous recombination mechanisms. Therefore, some of these regions may be unstable “hotspots” for the genesis of copy number variation, with recurrent duplications and deletions occurring across and within species. PMID:16702545

  13. Natural Genetic Variation and Candidate Genes for Morphological Traits in Drosophila melanogaster

    PubMed Central

    Carreira, Valeria Paula; Mensch, Julián; Hasson, Esteban; Fanara, Juan José

    2016-01-01

    Body size is a complex character associated to several fitness related traits that vary within and between species as a consequence of environmental and genetic factors. Latitudinal and altitudinal clines for different morphological traits have been described in several species of Drosophila and previous work identified genomic regions associated with such variation in D. melanogaster. However, the genetic factors that orchestrate morphological variation have been barely studied. Here, our main objective was to investigate genetic variation for different morphological traits associated to the second chromosome in natural populations of D. melanogaster along latitudinal and altitudinal gradients in Argentina. Our results revealed weak clinal signals and a strong population effect on morphological variation. Moreover, most pairwise comparisons between populations were significant. Our study also showed important within-population genetic variation, which must be associated to the second chromosome, as the lines are otherwise genetically identical. Next, we examined the contribution of different candidate genes to natural variation for these traits. We performed quantitative complementation tests using a battery of lines bearing mutated alleles at candidate genes located in the second chromosome and six second chromosome substitution lines derived from natural populations which exhibited divergent phenotypes. Results of complementation tests revealed that natural variation at all candidate genes studied, invected, Fasciclin 3, toucan, Reticulon-like1, jing and CG14478, affects the studied characters, suggesting that they are Quantitative Trait Genes for morphological traits. Finally, the phenotypic patterns observed suggest that different alleles of each gene might contribute to natural variation for morphological traits. However, non-additive effects cannot be ruled out, as wild-derived strains differ at myriads of second chromosome loci that may interact

  14. Natural Genetic Variation and Candidate Genes for Morphological Traits in Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Carreira, Valeria Paula; Mensch, Julián; Hasson, Esteban; Fanara, Juan José

    2016-01-01

    Body size is a complex character associated to several fitness related traits that vary within and between species as a consequence of environmental and genetic factors. Latitudinal and altitudinal clines for different morphological traits have been described in several species of Drosophila and previous work identified genomic regions associated with such variation in D. melanogaster. However, the genetic factors that orchestrate morphological variation have been barely studied. Here, our main objective was to investigate genetic variation for different morphological traits associated to the second chromosome in natural populations of D. melanogaster along latitudinal and altitudinal gradients in Argentina. Our results revealed weak clinal signals and a strong population effect on morphological variation. Moreover, most pairwise comparisons between populations were significant. Our study also showed important within-population genetic variation, which must be associated to the second chromosome, as the lines are otherwise genetically identical. Next, we examined the contribution of different candidate genes to natural variation for these traits. We performed quantitative complementation tests using a battery of lines bearing mutated alleles at candidate genes located in the second chromosome and six second chromosome substitution lines derived from natural populations which exhibited divergent phenotypes. Results of complementation tests revealed that natural variation at all candidate genes studied, invected, Fasciclin 3, toucan, Reticulon-like1, jing and CG14478, affects the studied characters, suggesting that they are Quantitative Trait Genes for morphological traits. Finally, the phenotypic patterns observed suggest that different alleles of each gene might contribute to natural variation for morphological traits. However, non-additive effects cannot be ruled out, as wild-derived strains differ at myriads of second chromosome loci that may interact

  15. Genetic variation in resistance to ionizing radiation. [Annual report, 1989

    SciTech Connect

    Ayala, F.J.

    1989-12-31

    The very reactive superoxide anion O{sub 2} is generated during cell respiration as well as during exposure to ionizing radiation. Organisms have evolved different mechanisms to protect against the deleterious effects of reduced oxygen species. The copper-zinc superoxide dismutase is a eukaryotic cytoplasmic enzyme that protects the cell by scavenging superoxide radicals and dismutating them to hydrogen peroxide and molecular oxygen: 20{sub 2}{sup {minus}} + 2H {yields} H{sub 2}O{sub 2} + O{sub 2}. SOD had been shown to protect against ionizing radiation damage to DNA, viruses, bacteria, mammalian cells, whole mice, and Drosophila. Evidence that genetic differences may affect sensitivity to ionizing radiation has been shown in Drosophila since differences have been shown to exist between strains and resistance to radiation can evolve under natural selection.

  16. Echinococcus equinus and Echinococcus granulosus sensu stricto from the United Kingdom: genetic diversity and haplotypic variation.

    PubMed

    Boufana, Belgees; Lett, Wai San; Lahmar, Samia; Buishi, Imad; Bodell, Anthony J; Varcasia, Antonio; Casulli, Adriano; Beeching, Nicholas J; Campbell, Fiona; Terlizzo, Monica; McManus, Donald P; Craig, Philip S

    2015-02-01

    Cystic echinococcosis is endemic in Europe including the United Kingdom. However, information on the molecular epidemiology of Echinococcus spp. from the United Kingdom is limited. Echinococcus isolates from intermediate and definitive animal hosts as well as from human cystic echinococcosis cases were analysed to determine species and genotypes within these hosts. Echinococcus equinus was identified from horse hydatid isolates, cysts retrieved from captive UK mammals and copro-DNA of foxhounds and farm dogs. Echinococcus granulosus sensu stricto (s.s.) was identified from hydatid cysts of sheep and cattle as well as in DNA extracted from farm dog and foxhound faecal samples, and from four human cystic echinococcosis isolates, including the first known molecular confirmation of E. granulosus s.s. infection in a Welsh sheep farmer. Low genetic variability for E. equinus from various hosts and from different geographical locations was detected using the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1 gene (cox1), indicating the presence of a dominant haplotype (EQUK01). In contrast, greater haplotypic variation was observed for E. granulosus s.s. cox1 sequences. The haplotype network showed a star-shaped network with a centrally placed main haplotype (EgUK01) that had been reported from other world regions. PMID:25479251

  17. Genetic variation and selection within glandless cotton germplasm

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    There is a renewed interest in research and use of glandless (free of gossypol) cotton that can produce edible seeds for human food and animal feed. However, there was a lack of information on yield potential of existing glandless germplasm since intermittent breeding activities for glandless cotton...

  18. Urban park characteristics, genetic variation, and historical demography of white-footed mouse (Peromyscus leucopus) populations in New York City.

    PubMed

    Munshi-South, Jason; Nagy, Christopher

    2014-01-01

    Severe fragmentation is a typical fate of native remnant habitats in cities, and urban wildlife with limited dispersal ability are predicted to lose genetic variation in isolated urban patches. However, little information exists on the characteristics of urban green spaces required to conserve genetic variation. In this study, we examine whether isolation in New York City (NYC) parks results in genetic bottlenecks in white-footed mice (Peromyscus leucopus), and test the hypotheses that park size and time since isolation are associated with genetic variability using nonlinear regression and information-theoretic model selection. White-footed mice have previously been documented to exhibit male-biased dispersal, which may create disparities in genetic variation between males and females in urban parks. We use genotypes of 18 neutral microsatellite data and four different statistical tests to assess this prediction. Given that sex-biased dispersal may create disparities between population genetic patterns inferred from bi- vs. uni-parentally inherited markers, we also sequenced a 324 bp segment of the mitochondrial D-loop for independent inferences of historical demography in urban P. leucopus. We report that isolation in urban parks does not necessarily result in genetic bottlenecks; only three out of 14 populations in NYC parks exhibited a signature of a recent bottleneck at 18 neutral microsatellite loci. Mouse populations in larger urban parks, or parks that have been isolated for shorter periods of time, also do not generally contain greater genetic variation than populations in smaller parks. These results suggest that even small networks of green spaces may be sufficient to maintain the evolutionary potential of native species with certain characteristics. We also found that isolation in urban parks results in weak to nonexistent sex-biased dispersal in a species known to exhibit male-biased dispersal in less fragmented environments. In contrast to nuclear loci

  19. Urban park characteristics, genetic variation, and historical demography of white-footed mouse (Peromyscus leucopus) populations in New York City

    PubMed Central

    Nagy, Christopher

    2014-01-01

    Severe fragmentation is a typical fate of native remnant habitats in cities, and urban wildlife with limited dispersal ability are predicted to lose genetic variation in isolated urban patches. However, little information exists on the characteristics of urban green spaces required to conserve genetic variation. In this study, we examine whether isolation in New York City (NYC) parks results in genetic bottlenecks in white-footed mice (Peromyscus leucopus), and test the hypotheses that park size and time since isolation are associated with genetic variability using nonlinear regression and information-theoretic model selection. White-footed mice have previously been documented to exhibit male-biased dispersal, which may create disparities in genetic variation between males and females in urban parks. We use genotypes of 18 neutral microsatellite data and four different statistical tests to assess this prediction. Given that sex-biased dispersal may create disparities between population genetic patterns inferred from bi- vs. uni-parentally inherited markers, we also sequenced a 324 bp segment of the mitochondrial D-loop for independent inferences of historical demography in urban P. leucopus. We report that isolation in urban parks does not necessarily result in genetic bottlenecks; only three out of 14 populations in NYC parks exhibited a signature of a recent bottleneck at 18 neutral microsatellite loci. Mouse populations in larger urban parks, or parks that have been isolated for shorter periods of time, also do not generally contain greater genetic variation than populations in smaller parks. These results suggest that even small networks of green spaces may be sufficient to maintain the evolutionary potential of native species with certain characteristics. We also found that isolation in urban parks results in weak to nonexistent sex-biased dispersal in a species known to exhibit male-biased dispersal in less fragmented environments. In contrast to nuclear loci

  20. A multivariate analysis of genetic variation in the advertisement call of the gray treefrog, Hyla versicolor.

    PubMed

    Welch, Allison M; Smith, Michael J; Gerhardt, H Carl

    2014-06-01

    Genetic variation in sexual displays is crucial for an evolutionary response to sexual selection, but can be eroded by strong selection. Identifying the magnitude and sources of additive genetic variance underlying sexually selected traits is thus an important issue in evolutionary biology. We conducted a quantitative genetics experiment with gray treefrogs (Hyla versicolor) to investigate genetic variances and covariances among features of the male advertisement call. Two energetically expensive traits showed significant genetic variation: call duration, expressed as number of pulses per call, and call rate, represented by its inverse, call period. These two properties also showed significant genetic covariance, consistent with an energetic constraint to call production. Combining the genetic variance-covariance matrix with previous estimates of directional sexual selection imposed by female preferences predicts a limited increase in call duration but no change in call rate despite significant selection on both traits. In addition to constraints imposed by the genetic covariance structure, an evolutionary response to sexual selection may also be limited by high energetic costs of long-duration calls and by preferences that act most strongly against very short-duration calls. Meanwhile, the persistence of these preferences could be explained by costs of mating with males with especially unattractive calls. PMID:24621402

  1. The Human as an Experimental System in Molecular Genetics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    White, Ray; Caskey, C. Thomas

    1988-01-01

    Discusses insights discovered from research into human biology that are raising possibilities for therapy, prevention of disease, and challenges to society in the form of ethical decisions about the appropriate application of genetic information. (Author/RT)

  2. Ethical issues arising from human genetics.

    PubMed

    Arnold, A; Moseley, R

    1976-03-01

    Advances in understanding genetic disorders have been rapid in the last few years and with them the need and desire for genetic counselling have grown. Almost simultaneously, particularly in the USA, several large screening programmes have been initiated to screen large numbers of people who may be carriers of such deleterious genes as those of Tay-Sachs disease and sickle cell anaemia. The authors of this paper, clinical medical students at University College Hospital, London, spent some time studying the ethical issues raised. The first part of their study, which is not published here, relates to the biochemistry of certain genetic disorders, so leading up to the aspect of the subject which must concern readers of this journal, genetic counselling. At present genetic counselling is generally the province of the medical practitioner working with clinical biochemists, and in this paper their function is described and how programmes of screening for carriers are designed. Whether the subjects of the screening tests are found to be 'innocent' or 'guilty' psychological problems confront them, and of these the genetic counsellor must be aware. In fact the range of ethical problems raised by such counselling is wide and can only be sketched in this article. PMID:957367

  3. Spontaneous mutations and the origin and maintenance of quantitative genetic variation.

    PubMed

    Huang, Wen; Lyman, Richard F; Lyman, Rachel A; Carbone, Mary Anna; Harbison, Susan T; Magwire, Michael M; Mackay, Trudy Fc

    2016-01-01

    Mutation and natural selection shape the genetic variation in natural populations. Here, we directly estimated the spontaneous mutation rate by sequencing new Drosophila mutation accumulation lines maintained with minimal natural selection. We inferred strong stabilizing natural selection on quantitative traits because genetic variation among wild-derived inbred lines was much lower than predicted from a neutral model and the mutational effects were much larger than allelic effects of standing polymorphisms. Stabilizing selection could act directly on the traits, or indirectly from pleiotropic effects on fitness. However, our data are not consistent with simple models of mutation-stabilizing selection balance; therefore, further empirical work is needed to assess the balance of evolutionary forces responsible for quantitative genetic variation. PMID:27213517

  4. Genetic interactions contribute less than additive effects to quantitative trait variation in yeast

    PubMed Central

    Bloom, Joshua S.; Kotenko, Iulia; Sadhu, Meru J.; Treusch, Sebastian; Albert, Frank W.; Kruglyak, Leonid

    2015-01-01

    Genetic mapping studies of quantitative traits typically focus on detecting loci that contribute additively to trait variation. Genetic interactions are often proposed as a contributing factor to trait variation, but the relative contribution of interactions to trait variation is a subject of debate. Here we use a very large cross between two yeast strains to accurately estimate the fraction of phenotypic variance due to pairwise QTL–QTL interactions for 20 quantitative traits. We find that this fraction is 9% on average, substantially less than the contribution of additive QTL (43%). Statistically significant QTL–QTL pairs typically have small individual effect sizes, but collectively explain 40% of the pairwise interaction variance. We show that pairwise interaction variance is largely explained by pairs of loci at least one of which has a significant additive effect. These results refine our understanding of the genetic architecture of quantitative traits and help guide future mapping studies. PMID:26537231

  5. Studies of Genetic Variation of Essential Oil and Alkaloid Content in Boldo (Peumus boldus).

    PubMed

    Vogel, H; Razmilic, I; Muñoz, M; Doll, U; Martin, J S

    1999-02-01

    Boldo is a tree or shrub with medicinal properties native to Chile. The leaves contain alkaloids and essential oils. Variation of total alkaloid concentration, of the alkaloid boldine, and essential oil components were studied in different populations from northern, central, and southern parts of its geographic range and in their progenies (half-sib families). Total alkaloid concentration showed genetic variation between progenies of the central population but not between populations. Boldine content found in concentrations of 0.007 to 0.009% did not differ significantly between populations. Principal components of the essential oil were determined genetically, with highest values for ascaridole in the population of the north and for P-cymene in the south. Between half-sib families genetic variation was found in the central and northern populations for these components. The high heritability coefficients found indicate considerable potential for successful selection of individuals for these characters. PMID:17260243

  6. Spontaneous mutations and the origin and maintenance of quantitative genetic variation

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Wen; Lyman, Richard F; Lyman, Rachel A; Carbone, Mary Anna; Harbison, Susan T; Magwire, Michael M; Mackay, Trudy FC

    2016-01-01

    Mutation and natural selection shape the genetic variation in natural populations. Here, we directly estimated the spontaneous mutation rate by sequencing new Drosophila mutation accumulation lines maintained with minimal natural selection. We inferred strong stabilizing natural selection on quantitative traits because genetic variation among wild-derived inbred lines was much lower than predicted from a neutral model and the mutational effects were much larger than allelic effects of standing polymorphisms. Stabilizing selection could act directly on the traits, or indirectly from pleiotropic effects on fitness. However, our data are not consistent with simple models of mutation-stabilizing selection balance; therefore, further empirical work is needed to assess the balance of evolutionary forces responsible for quantitative genetic variation. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.14625.001 PMID:27213517

  7. Sex, death, and genetic variation: natural and sexual selection on cricket song

    PubMed Central

    Gray, D. A.; Cade, W. H.

    1999-01-01

    Male field crickets, Gryllus integer, in Texas, USA, produce a trilled calling song that attracts female crickets, resulting in enhanced mating success. Gravid female parasitoid flies, Ormia ochracea, are also attracted to male cricket calling song, resulting in the death of the male within about seven days. Using playbacks of field-cricket calling song in the natural habitat, we show that both female crickets and female parasitoid flies prefer male calling song with average numbers of pulses per trill. Thus female crickets exert stabilizing sexual selection, whereas flies exert disruptive natural selection on male song. Disruptive natural selection will promote genetic variation and population divergence. Stabilizing sexual selection will reduce genetic variation and maintain population cohesiveness. These forces may balance and together maintain the observed high levels of genetic variation (ca. 40%) in male calling song.

  8. Comparing sensory experiences across individuals: recent psychophysical advances illuminate genetic variation in taste perception.

    PubMed

    Bartoshuk, L M

    2000-08-01

    Modern psychophysics has traveled considerably beyond the threshold measures that dominated sensory studies in the first half of this century. Current methods capture the range of perceived intensity from threshold to maximum and promise to provide increasingly accurate comparisons of perceived intensities across individuals. The application of new psychophysical tools to genetic variation in taste allowed us to discover supertasters, individuals who live in particularly intense taste worlds. Because of the anatomy of the taste system, supertasters feel more burn from oral irritants like chili peppers, more creaminess/ viscosity from fats and thickeners in food and may also experience more intense oral pain. Not surprisingly, these sensory differences influence food choices and thus health. A discussion of the milestones on the road to understanding genetic variation in taste must include discussion of some potholes as well. Often our failures have been as instructive as our successes in the effort to evaluate the impact of genetic variation in taste. PMID:10944509

  9. Color image segmentation considering human sensitivity for color pattern variations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoon, Kuk-Jin; Kweon, In-So

    2001-10-01

    Color image segmentation plays an important role in the computer vision and image processing area. In this paper, we propose a novel color image segmentation algorithm in consideration of human visual sensitivity for color pattern variations by generalizing K-means clustering. Human visual system has different color perception sensitivity according to the spatial color pattern variation. To reflect this effect, we define the CCM (Color Complexity Measure) by calculating the absolute deviation with Gaussian weighting within the local mask and assign weight value to each color vector using the CCM values.

  10. Coalescent-based method for learning parameters of admixture events from large-scale genetic variation data.

    PubMed

    Tsai, Ming-Chi; Blelloch, Guy; Ravi, R; Schwartz, Russell

    2013-01-01

    Detecting and quantifying the timing and the genetic contributions of parental populations to a hybrid population is an important but challenging problem in reconstructing evolutionary histories from genetic variation data. With the advent of high throughput genotyping technologies, new methods suitable for large-scale data are especially needed. Furthermore, existing methods typically assume the assignment of individuals into subpopulations is known, when that itself is a difficult problem often unresolved for real data. Here, we propose a novel method that combines prior work for inferring non reticulate population structures with an MCMC scheme for sampling over admixture scenarios to both identify population assignments and learn divergence times and admixture proportions for those populations using genome-scale admixed genetic variation data. We validated our method using coalescent simulations and a collection of real bovine and human variation data. On simulated sequences, our methods show better accuracy and faster run time than leading competitive methods in estimating admixture fractions and divergence times. Analysis on the real data further shows our methods to be effective at matching our best current knowledge about the relevant populations. PMID:23959633

  11. Genetic variation in homocysteine metabolism, cognition, and white matter lesions.

    PubMed

    de Lau, Lonneke M L; van Meurs, Joyce B J; Uitterlinden, André G; Smith, A David; Refsum, Helga; Johnston, Carole; Breteler, Monique M B

    2010-11-01

    Several studies have shown an association between homocysteine concentration and cognitive performance or cerebral white matter lesions. However, variations in genes encoding for enzymes and other proteins that play a role in homocysteine metabolism have hardly been evaluated in relation to these outcome measures. In the population-based Rotterdam Scan Study, we examined the association of seven polymorphisms of genes involved in homocysteine metabolism (MTHFR 677C>T, MTHFR 1298A>C, RFC 80G>A, TC 776C>G, MTR 2756A>G, MTRR 66A>G, and CBS 844ins68) with plasma total homocysteine, cognitive performance, and cerebral white matter lesions among 1011 non-demented elderly participants. Of all the studied polymorphisms, only MTHFR 677C>T was associated with homocysteine concentration. No significant relationship was observed for any of the polymorphisms with cognitive performance or severity of cerebral white matter lesions. PMID:19019492

  12. Genetic Variation in the Free-Living Amoeba Naegleria fowleri

    PubMed Central

    Pélandakis, Michel; De Jonckheere, Johan F.; Pernin, Pierre

    1998-01-01

    In this study, 30 strains of the pathogenic free-living amoeba Naegleria fowleri were investigated by using the randomly amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) method. The present study confirmed our previous finding that RAPD variation is not correlated with geographical origin. In particular, Mexican strains belong to the variant previously detected in Asia, Europe, and the United States. In France, surprisingly, strains from Cattenom gave RAPD patterns identical to those of the Japanese strains. In addition, all of these strains, together with an additional French strain from Chooz, exhibited similarities to South Pacific strains. The results also confirmed the presence of numerous variants in Europe, whereas only two variants were detected in the United States. The two variants found in the United States were different from the South Pacific variants. These findings do not support the previous hypothesis concerning the origin and modes of dispersal of N. fowleri. PMID:9687460

  13. Plasmodium falciparum genetic crosses in a humanized mouse model

    PubMed Central

    Vaughan, Ashley M.; Pinapati, Richard S.; Cheeseman, Ian H.; Camargo, Nelly; Fishbaugher, Matthew; Checkley, Lisa A.; Nair, Shalini; Hutyra, Carolyn A.; Nosten, François H.; Anderson, Timothy J. C.; Ferdig, Michael T.; Kappe, Stefan H. I.

    2015-01-01

    Genetic crosses of phenotypically distinct strains of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum are a powerful tool for identifying genes controlling drug resistance and other key phenotypes. Previous studies relied on the isolation of recombinant parasites from splenectomized chimpanzees, a research avenue that is no longer available. Here, we demonstrate that human-liver chimeric mice support recovery of recombinant progeny for the identification of genetic determinants of parasite traits and adaptations. PMID:26030447

  14. Genetic Variation in Myosin 1H Contributes to Mandibular Prognathism