Science.gov

Sample records for neonicotinoids structural insights

  1. Imidacloprid and thiacloprid neonicotinoids bind more favourably to cockroach than to honeybee α6 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor: insights from computational studies.

    PubMed

    Selvam, Balaji; Graton, Jérôme; Laurent, Adèle D; Alamiddine, Zakaria; Mathé-Allainmat, Monique; Lebreton, Jacques; Coqueret, Olivier; Olivier, Christophe; Thany, Steeve H; Le Questel, Jean-Yves

    2015-02-01

    The binding interactions of two neonicotinoids, imidacloprid (IMI) and thiacloprid (THI) with the extracellular domains of cockroach and honeybee α6 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunits in an homomeric receptor have been studied through docking and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. The binding mode predicted for the two neonicotinoids is validated through the good agreement observed between the theoretical results with the crystal structures of the corresponding complexes with Ac-AChBP, the recognized structural surrogate for insects nAChR extracellular ligand binding domain. The binding site of the two insect α6 receptors differs by only one residue of loop D, a serine residue (Ser83) in cockroach being replaced by a lysine residue (Lys108) in honeybee. The docking results show very close interactions for the two neonicotinoids with both α6 nAChR models, in correspondence to the trends observed in the experimental neonicotinoid-Ac-AChBP complexes. However, the docking parameters (scores and energies) are not significantly different between the two insect α6 nAChRs to draw clear conclusions. The MD results bring distinct trends. The analysis of the average interaction energies in the two insects α6 nAChRs shows indeed better affinity of neonicotinoids bound to α6 cockroach compared to honeybee nAChR. This preference is explained by tighter contacts with aromatic residues (Trp and Tyr) of the binding pocket. Interestingly, the non-conserved residue Lys108 of loop D of α6 honeybee nAChR interacts through van der Waals contacts with neonicotinoids, which appear more favourable than the direct or water mediated hydrogen-bond interaction between the OH group of Ser83 of α6 cockroach nAChR and the electronegative terminal group of the two neonicotinoids (nitro in IMI and cyano in THI). Finally, in both insects nAChRs, THI is consistently found to bind more favourably than IMI. PMID:25424654

  2. Structural features of phenoxycarbonylimino neonicotinoids acting at the insect nicotinic receptor.

    PubMed

    Ohno, Ikuya; Tomizawa, Motohiro; Miyazu, Nozomi; Kushibiki, Gohito; Noda, Kumiko; Hasebe, Yasunori; Durkin, Kathleen A; Miyake, Taiji; Kagabu, Shinzo

    2010-10-01

    Substituted-phenoxycarbonylimino neonicotinoid ligands with an electron-donating group showed significantly higher affinity to the insect nicotinic receptor relative to that of the analogue with an electron-withdrawing substituent, thereby establishing in silico binding site interaction model featuring that the phenoxy ring of neonicotinoids and the receptor loop D tryptophan indole plane form a face-to-edge aromatic interaction. PMID:20729079

  3. Atomic interactions of neonicotinoid agonists with AChBP: Molecular recognition of the distinctive electronegative pharmacophore

    SciTech Connect

    Talley, Todd T.; Harel, Michal; Hibbs, Ryan E.; Radi, Zoran; Tomizawa, Motohiro; Casida, John E.; Taylor, Palmer

    2008-07-28

    Acetylcholine-binding proteins (AChBPs) from mollusks are suitable structural and functional surrogates of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors when combined with transmembrane spans of the nicotinic receptor. These proteins assemble as a pentamer with identical ACh binding sites at the subunit interfaces and show ligand specificities resembling those of the nicotinic receptor for agonists and antagonists. A subset of ligands, termed the neonicotinoids, exhibit specificity for insect nicotinic receptors and selective toxicity as insecticides. AChBPs are of neither mammalian nor insect origin and exhibit a distinctive pattern of selectivity for the neonicotinoid ligands. We define here the binding orientation and determinants of differential molecular recognition for the neonicotinoids and classical nicotinoids by estimates of kinetic and equilibrium binding parameters and crystallographic analysis. Neonicotinoid complex formation is rapid and accompanied by quenching of the AChBP tryptophan fluorescence. Comparisons of the neonicotinoids imidacloprid and thiacloprid in the binding site from Aplysia californica AChBP at 2.48 and 1.94 {angstrom} in resolution reveal a single conformation of the bound ligands with four of the five sites occupied in the pentameric crystal structure. The neonicotinoid electronegative pharmacophore is nestled in an inverted direction compared with the nicotinoid cationic functionality at the subunit interfacial binding pocket. Characteristic of several agonists, loop C largely envelops the ligand, positioning aromatic side chains to interact optimally with conjugated and hydrophobic regions of the neonicotinoid. This template defines the association of interacting amino acids and their energetic contributions to the distinctive interactions of neonicotinoids.

  4. Functional Insights from Structural Genomics

    SciTech Connect

    Forouhar,F.; Kuzin, A.; Seetharaman, J.; Lee, I.; Zhou, W.; Abashidze, M.; Chen, Y.; Montelione, G.; Tong, L.; et al

    2007-01-01

    Structural genomics efforts have produced structural information, either directly or by modeling, for thousands of proteins over the past few years. While many of these proteins have known functions, a large percentage of them have not been characterized at the functional level. The structural information has provided valuable functional insights on some of these proteins, through careful structural analyses, serendipity, and structure-guided functional screening. Some of the success stories based on structures solved at the Northeast Structural Genomics Consortium (NESG) are reported here. These include a novel methyl salicylate esterase with important role in plant innate immunity, a novel RNA methyltransferase (H. influenzae yggJ (HI0303)), a novel spermidine/spermine N-acetyltransferase (B. subtilis PaiA), a novel methyltransferase or AdoMet binding protein (A. fulgidus AF{_}0241), an ATP:cob(I)alamin adenosyltransferase (B. subtilis YvqK), a novel carboxysome pore (E. coli EutN), a proline racemase homolog with a disrupted active site (B. melitensis BME11586), an FMN-dependent enzyme (S. pneumoniae SP{_}1951), and a 12-stranded {beta}-barrel with a novel fold (V. parahaemolyticus VPA1032).

  5. Structural Insight into Proteorhodopsin Oligomers

    PubMed Central

    Stone, Katherine M.; Voska, Jeda; Kinnebrew, Maia; Pavlova, Anna; Junk, Matthias J.N.; Han, Songi

    2013-01-01

    Oligomerization has important functional implications for many membrane proteins. However, obtaining structural insight into oligomeric assemblies is challenging, as they are large and resist crystallization. We focus on proteorhodopsin (PR), a protein with seven transmembrane α-helices that was found to assemble to hexamers in densely packed lipid membrane, or detergent-solubilized environments. Yet, the structural organization and the subunit interface of these PR oligomers were unknown. We used site-directed spin-labeling together with electron spin-resonance lineshape and Overhauser dynamic nuclear polarization analysis to construct a model for the specific orientation of PR subunits within the hexameric complex. We found intersubunit distances to average 16 Å between neighboring 55 residues and that residues 177 are >20 Å apart from each other. These distance constraints show that PR has a defined and radial orientation within a hexamer, with the 55-site of the A-B loop facing the hexamer core and the 177-site of the E-F loop facing the hexamer exterior. Dynamic nuclear polarization measurements of the local solvent dynamics complement the electron spin-resonance-based distance analysis, by resolving whether protein surfaces at positions 55, 58, and 177 are exposed to solvent, or covered by protein-protein or protein-detergent contacts. PMID:23442869

  6. Neonicotinoids Interfere with Specific Components of Navigation in Honeybees

    PubMed Central

    Fischer, Johannes; Müller, Teresa; Spatz, Anne-Kathrin; Greggers, Uwe; Grünewald, Bernd; Menzel, Randolf

    2014-01-01

    Three neonicotinoids, imidacloprid, clothianidin and thiacloprid, agonists of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor in the central brain of insects, were applied at non-lethal doses in order to test their effects on honeybee navigation. A catch-and-release experimental design was applied in which feeder trained bees were caught when arriving at the feeder, treated with one of the neonicotinoids, and released 1.5 hours later at a remote site. The flight paths of individual bees were tracked with harmonic radar. The initial flight phase controlled by the recently acquired navigation memory (vector memory) was less compromised than the second phase that leads the animal back to the hive (homing flight). The rate of successful return was significantly lower in treated bees, the probability of a correct turn at a salient landscape structure was reduced, and less directed flights during homing flights were performed. Since the homing phase in catch-and-release experiments documents the ability of a foraging honeybee to activate a remote memory acquired during its exploratory orientation flights, we conclude that non-lethal doses of the three neonicotinoids tested either block the retrieval of exploratory navigation memory or alter this form of navigation memory. These findings are discussed in the context of the application of neonicotinoids in plant protection. PMID:24646521

  7. Overview of the status and global strategy for neonicotinoids.

    PubMed

    Jeschke, Peter; Nauen, Ralf; Schindler, Michael; Elbert, Alfred

    2011-04-13

    In recent years, neonicotinoid insecticides have been the fastest growing class of insecticides in modern crop protection, with widespread use against a broad spectrum of sucking and certain chewing pests. As potent agonists, they act selectively on insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), their molecular target site. The discovery of neonicotinoids can be considered as a milestone in insecticide research and greatly facilitates the understanding of functional properties of the insect nAChRs. In this context, the crystal structure of the acetylcholine-binding proteins provides the theoretical foundation for designing homology models of the corresponding receptor ligand binding domains within the nAChRs, a useful basis for virtual screening of chemical libraries and rational design of novel insecticides acting on these practically relevant channels. Because of the relatively low risk for nontarget organisms and the environment, the high target specificity of neonicotinoid insecticides, and their versatility in application methods, this important class has to be maintained globally for integrated pest management strategies and insect resistance management programs. Innovative concepts for life-cycle management, jointly with the introduction of generic products, have made neonicotinoids the most important chemical class for the insecticide market. PMID:20565065

  8. Biological Monitoring of Human Exposure to Neonicotinoids Using Urine Samples, and Neonicotinoid Excretion Kinetics

    PubMed Central

    Harada, Kouji H.; Tanaka, Keiko; Sakamoto, Hiroko; Imanaka, Mie; Niisoe, Tamon; Hitomi, Toshiaki; Kobayashi, Hatasu; Okuda, Hiroko; Inoue, Sumiko; Kusakawa, Koichi; Oshima, Masayo; Watanabe, Kiyohiko; Yasojima, Makoto; Takasuga, Takumi; Koizumi, Akio

    2016-01-01

    Background Neonicotinoids, which are novel pesticides, have entered into usage around the world because they are selectively toxic to arthropods and relatively non-toxic to vertebrates. It has been suggested that several neonicotinoids cause neurodevelopmental toxicity in mammals. The aim was to establish the relationship between oral intake and urinary excretion of neonicotinoids by humans to facilitate biological monitoring, and to estimate dietary neonicotinoid intakes by Japanese adults. Methodology/Principal Findings Deuterium-labeled neonicotinoid (acetamiprid, clothianidin, dinotefuran, and imidacloprid) microdoses were orally ingested by nine healthy adults, and 24 h pooled urine samples were collected for 4 consecutive days after dosing. The excretion kinetics were modeled using one- and two-compartment models, then validated in a non-deuterium-labeled neonicotinoid microdose study involving 12 healthy adults. Increased urinary concentrations of labeled neonicotinoids were observed after dosing. Clothianidin was recovered unchanged within 3 days, and most dinotefuran was recovered unchanged within 1 day. Around 10% of the imidacloprid dose was excreted unchanged. Most of the acetamiprid was metabolized to desmethyl-acetamiprid. Spot urine samples from 373 Japanese adults were analyzed for neonicotinoids, and daily intakes were estimated. The estimated average daily intake of these neonicotinoids was 0.53–3.66 μg/day. The highest intake of any of the neonicotinoids in the study population was 64.5 μg/day for dinotefuran, and this was <1% of the acceptable daily intake. PMID:26731104

  9. Neonicotinoid insecticides: highlights of a symposium on strategic molecular designs.

    PubMed

    Tomizawa, Motohiro; Casida, John E

    2011-04-13

    Neonicotinoids are the newest of the five major classes of insecticides (the others are chlorinated hydrocarbons, organophosphorus compounds, methylcarbamates, and pyrethroids), and they make up approximately one-fourth of the world insecticide market. Nithiazine was the lead compound from Shell Development Co. in California later optimized by Shinzo Kagabu of Nihon Tokushu Noyaku Seizo to increase the potency and photostability, resulting in imidacloprid and thiacloprid. These discoveries are the basis for the International Award for Research in Agrochemicals of the American Chemical Society presented in 2010 to Professor Shinzo Kagabu. Five other neonicotinoids were added by others for the current set of seven commercial compounds. This symposium considers the progress in discovery and development of novel chemotype nicotinic insecticides with enhanced effectiveness, unique biological properties, and maximal safety. Chemorational approaches considered include physicochemical properties, metabolic activation and detoxification, and chemical and structural biology aspects potentially facilitating receptor structure-guided insecticide design. PMID:21077684

  10. Structural insights into ribosome translocation.

    PubMed

    Ling, Clarence; Ermolenko, Dmitri N

    2016-09-01

    During protein synthesis, tRNA and mRNA are translocated from the A to P to E sites of the ribosome thus enabling the ribosome to translate one codon of mRNA after the other. Ribosome translocation along mRNA is induced by the universally conserved ribosome GTPase, elongation factor G (EF-G) in bacteria and elongation factor 2 (EF-2) in eukaryotes. Recent structural and single-molecule studies revealed that tRNA and mRNA translocation within the ribosome is accompanied by cyclic forward and reverse rotations between the large and small ribosomal subunits parallel to the plane of the intersubunit interface. In addition, during ribosome translocation, the 'head' domain of small ribosomal subunit undergoes forward- and back-swiveling motions relative to the rest of the small ribosomal subunit around the axis that is orthogonal to the axis of intersubunit rotation. tRNA/mRNA translocation is also coupled to the docking of domain IV of EF-G into the A site of the small ribosomal subunit that converts the thermally driven motions of the ribosome and tRNA into the forward translocation of tRNA/mRNA inside the ribosome. Despite recent and enormous progress made in the understanding of the molecular mechanism of ribosome translocation, the sequence of structural rearrangements of the ribosome, EF-G and tRNA during translocation is still not fully established and awaits further investigation. WIREs RNA 2016, 7:620-636. doi: 10.1002/wrna.1354 For further resources related to this article, please visit the WIREs website. PMID:27117863

  11. New Biological Insights from Better Structure Models.

    PubMed

    Touw, Wouter G; Joosten, Robbie P; Vriend, Gert

    2016-03-27

    Structure validation is a key component of all steps in the structure determination process, from structure building, refinement, deposition, and evaluation all the way to post-deposition optimisation of structures in the Protein Data Bank (PDB) by re-refinement and re-building. Today, many aspects of protein structures are understood better than 10years ago, and combined with improved software and more computing power, the automated PDB_REDO procedure can significantly improve about 85% of all X-ray structures ever deposited in the PDB. We review structure validation, structure improvement, and a series of validation resources and facilities that give access to improved PDB files and to reports on the quality of the original and the improved structures. Post-deposition optimisation generally leads to improved protein structures and a series of examples will illustrate how that, in turn, leads to improved or even novel biological insights. PMID:26869101

  12. Structural insights into microtubule doublet interactions inaxonemes

    SciTech Connect

    Downing, Kenneth H.; Sui, Haixin

    2007-06-06

    Coordinated sliding of microtubule doublets, driven by dynein motors, produces periodic beating of the axoneme. Recent structural studies of the axoneme have used cryo-electron tomography to reveal new details of the interactions among some of the multitude of proteins that form the axoneme and regulate its movement. Connections among the several sets of dyneins, in particular, suggest ways in which their actions may be coordinated. Study of the molecular architecture of isolated doublets has provided a structural basis for understanding the doublet's mechanical properties that are related to the bending of the axoneme, and has also offered insight into its potential role in the mechanism of dynein activity regulation.

  13. Bees prefer foods containing neonicotinoid pesticides.

    PubMed

    Kessler, Sébastien C; Tiedeken, Erin Jo; Simcock, Kerry L; Derveau, Sophie; Mitchell, Jessica; Softley, Samantha; Radcliffe, Amy; Stout, Jane C; Wright, Geraldine A

    2015-05-01

    The impact of neonicotinoid insecticides on insect pollinators is highly controversial. Sublethal concentrations alter the behaviour of social bees and reduce survival of entire colonies. However, critics argue that the reported negative effects only arise from neonicotinoid concentrations that are greater than those found in the nectar and pollen of pesticide-treated plants. Furthermore, it has been suggested that bees could choose to forage on other available flowers and hence avoid or dilute exposure. Here, using a two-choice feeding assay, we show that the honeybee, Apis mellifera, and the buff-tailed bumblebee, Bombus terrestris, do not avoid nectar-relevant concentrations of three of the most commonly used neonicotinoids, imidacloprid (IMD), thiamethoxam (TMX), and clothianidin (CLO), in food. Moreover, bees of both species prefer to eat more of sucrose solutions laced with IMD or TMX than sucrose alone. Stimulation with IMD, TMX and CLO neither elicited spiking responses from gustatory neurons in the bees' mouthparts, nor inhibited the responses of sucrose-sensitive neurons. Our data indicate that bees cannot taste neonicotinoids and are not repelled by them. Instead, bees preferred solutions containing IMD or TMX, even though the consumption of these pesticides caused them to eat less food overall. This work shows that bees cannot control their exposure to neonicotinoids in food and implies that treating flowering crops with IMD and TMX presents a sizeable hazard to foraging bees. PMID:25901684

  14. Bees prefer foods containing neonicotinoid pesticides

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kessler, Sébastien C.; Tiedeken, Erin Jo; Simcock, Kerry L.; Derveau, Sophie; Mitchell, Jessica; Softley, Samantha; Stout, Jane C.; Wright, Geraldine A.

    2015-05-01

    The impact of neonicotinoid insecticides on insect pollinators is highly controversial. Sublethal concentrations alter the behaviour of social bees and reduce survival of entire colonies. However, critics argue that the reported negative effects only arise from neonicotinoid concentrations that are greater than those found in the nectar and pollen of pesticide-treated plants. Furthermore, it has been suggested that bees could choose to forage on other available flowers and hence avoid or dilute exposure. Here, using a two-choice feeding assay, we show that the honeybee, Apis mellifera, and the buff-tailed bumblebee, Bombus terrestris, do not avoid nectar-relevant concentrations of three of the most commonly used neonicotinoids, imidacloprid (IMD), thiamethoxam (TMX), and clothianidin (CLO), in food. Moreover, bees of both species prefer to eat more of sucrose solutions laced with IMD or TMX than sucrose alone. Stimulation with IMD, TMX and CLO neither elicited spiking responses from gustatory neurons in the bees' mouthparts, nor inhibited the responses of sucrose-sensitive neurons. Our data indicate that bees cannot taste neonicotinoids and are not repelled by them. Instead, bees preferred solutions containing IMD or TMX, even though the consumption of these pesticides caused them to eat less food overall. This work shows that bees cannot control their exposure to neonicotinoids in food and implies that treating flowering crops with IMD and TMX presents a sizeable hazard to foraging bees.

  15. Bees prefer foods containing neonicotinoid pesticides

    PubMed Central

    Simcock, Kerry L.; Derveau, Sophie; Mitchell, Jessica; Softley, Samantha; Stout, Jane C.; Wright, Geraldine A.

    2015-01-01

    The impact of neonicotinoid insecticides on insect pollinators is highly controversial. Sublethal concentrations alter the behaviour of social bees and reduce survival of entire colonies1-3. However, critics argue that the reported negative effects only arise from neonicotinoid concentrations that are greater than those found in the nectar and pollen of pesticide-treated plants4. Furthermore, it has been suggested that bees could choose to forage on other available flowers and hence avoid or dilute exposure4,5. Here, using a two-choice feeding assay, we show that the honeybee, Apis mellifera, and the buff-tailed bumblebee, Bombus terrestris, do not avoid nectar-relevant concentrations of three of the most commonly-used neonicotinoids, imidacloprid (IMD), thiamethoxam (TMX), and clothianidin (CLO) in food. Moreover, bees of both species prefer to eat more of sucrose solutions laced with IMD or TMX than sucrose alone. Stimulation with IMD, TMX, and CLO neither elicited spiking responses from gustatory neurons in the bees’ mouthparts nor inhibited the responses of sucrose-sensitive neurons. Our data indicate that bees cannot taste neonicotinoids and are not repelled by them. Instead, bees preferred solutions containing IMD or TMX even though the consumption of these pesticides caused them to eat less food overall. This work shows that bees cannot control their exposure to neonicotinoids in food and implies that treating flowering crops with IMD and TMX presents a significant hazard to foraging bees. PMID:25901684

  16. Structural insights into eukaryotic aquaporin regulation.

    PubMed

    Törnroth-Horsefield, Susanna; Hedfalk, Kristina; Fischer, Gerhard; Lindkvist-Petersson, Karin; Neutze, Richard

    2010-06-18

    Aquaporin-mediated water transport across cellular membranes is an ancient, ubiquitous mechanism within cell biology. This family of integral membrane proteins includes both water selective pores (aquaporins) and transport facilitators of other small molecules such as glycerol and urea (aquaglyceroporins). Eukaryotic aquaporins are frequently regulated post-translationally by gating, whereby the rate of flux through the channel is controlled, or by trafficking, whereby aquaporins are shuttled from intracellular storage sites to the plasma membrane. A number of high-resolution X-ray structures of eukaryotic aquaporins have recently been reported and the new structural insights into gating and trafficking that emerged from these studies are described. Basic structural themes reoccur, illustrating how the problem of regulation in diverse biological contexts builds upon a limited set of possible solutions. PMID:20416297

  17. Structural and mechanistic insights on nitrate reductases.

    PubMed

    Coelho, Catarina; Romão, Maria João

    2015-12-01

    Nitrate reductases (NR) belong to the DMSO reductase family of Mo-containing enzymes and perform key roles in the metabolism of the nitrogen cycle, reducing nitrate to nitrite. Due to variable cell location, structure and function, they have been divided into periplasmic (Nap), cytoplasmic, and membrane-bound (Nar) nitrate reductases. The first crystal structure obtained for a NR was that of the monomeric NapA from Desulfovibrio desulfuricans in 1999. Since then several new crystal structures were solved providing novel insights that led to the revision of the commonly accepted reaction mechanism for periplasmic nitrate reductases. The two crystal structures available for the NarGHI protein are from the same organism (Escherichia coli) and the combination with electrochemical and spectroscopic studies also lead to the proposal of a reaction mechanism for this group of enzymes. Here we present an overview on the current advances in structural and functional aspects of bacterial nitrate reductases, focusing on the mechanistic implications drawn from the crystallographic data. PMID:26362109

  18. Neonicotinoids in the Canadian aquatic environment: a literature review on current use products with a focus on fate, exposure, and biological effects.

    PubMed

    Anderson, J C; Dubetz, C; Palace, V P

    2015-02-01

    Developed to replace organophosphate and carbamate insecticides, neonicotinoids are structurally similar to nicotine. The three main neonicotinoid insecticides, imidacloprid, clothianidin, and thiamethoxam, are being re-evaluated by Health Canada's Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA). An important aspect of the re-evaluation is the potential for effects in non-target organisms, including aquatic organisms. Leaching into surface waters is one of the major concerns surrounding extensive use of neonicotinoids, especially in close proximity to water bodies. The PMRA has classified IMI as 'persistent' with a 'high' leaching potential. Globally, neonicotinoids have been detected in a variety of water bodies, typically at concentrations in the low μg/L range. While IMI has been included in some monitoring exercises, there are currently very few published data for the presence of CLO and THM in Canadian water bodies. The majority of neonicotinoid toxicity studies have been conducted with IMI due to its longer presence on the market and high prevalence of use. Aquatic insects are particularly vulnerable to neonicotinoids and chronic toxicity has been observed at concentrations of IMI below 1 μg/L. Acute toxicity has been reported at concentrations below 20 μg/L for the most sensitive species, including Hyalella azteca, ostracods, and Chironomus riparius. Fish, algae, amphibians, and molluscs are relatively insensitive to IMI. However, the biological effects of THM and CLO have not been as well explored. The Canadian interim water quality guideline for IMI is 0.23 μg/L, but there is currently insufficient use, fate, and toxicological information available to establish guidelines for CLO and THM. Based on concentrations of neonicotinoids reported in surface waters in Canada and globally, there is potential for aquatic invertebrates to be negatively impacted by neonicotinoids. Therefore, it is necessary to address knowledge gaps to inform decisions around guidelines

  19. Solid-phase purification and extraction for the determination of trace neonicotinoid pesticides in tea infusion.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Minglu; Chen, Hongping; Zhu, Li; Wang, Chuanpi; Ma, Guicen; Liu, Xin

    2016-03-01

    An analytical protocol that includes solid-phase purification and extraction is successfully developed for the determination of trace neonicotinoid pesticides in tea infusion. The method consists of a purification on amino-functionalized mesoporous silica SBA-15 followed by a solid-phase extraction based on graphene oxide before ultra high performance liquid chromatography with tandem mass spectrometry analysis. Parameters that significantly affected the extraction of the neonicotinoids onto graphene oxide, such as the amount of adsorbent, extraction time, pH, elution solvent, etc. were optimized. The amino-functionalized mesoporous silica SBA-15 has been proved to be an efficient adsorbent for removal of polyphenols especially catechins from tea infusion. Graphene oxide exhibits a very rapid adsorption rate (within 10 min) and high adsorption capacities for neonicotinoids at low initial concentration (0.01-0.5 mg/L). The analysis method gave a good determination coefficient (r(2) > 0.99) for each pesticide and high recoveries in the range of 72.2-95.0%. Powder X-ray diffraction, Raman spectroscopy, transmission electron microscopy, and UV-vis spectroscopy were utilized to identify the structure and morphology of graphene oxide. The adsorption driving force of neonicotinoids on graphene oxide mainly depends on π-π electron donor-acceptor interaction and electrostatic interaction. PMID:26639124

  20. Neonicotinoid pesticides severely affect honey bee queens.

    PubMed

    Williams, Geoffrey R; Troxler, Aline; Retschnig, Gina; Roth, Kaspar; Yañez, Orlando; Shutler, Dave; Neumann, Peter; Gauthier, Laurent

    2015-01-01

    Queen health is crucial to colony survival of social bees. Recently, queen failure has been proposed to be a major driver of managed honey bee colony losses, yet few data exist concerning effects of environmental stressors on queens. Here we demonstrate for the first time that exposure to field-realistic concentrations of neonicotinoid pesticides during development can severely affect queens of western honey bees (Apis mellifera). In pesticide-exposed queens, reproductive anatomy (ovaries) and physiology (spermathecal-stored sperm quality and quantity), rather than flight behaviour, were compromised and likely corresponded to reduced queen success (alive and producing worker offspring). This study highlights the detriments of neonicotinoids to queens of environmentally and economically important social bees, and further strengthens the need for stringent risk assessments to safeguard biodiversity and ecosystem services that are vulnerable to these substances. PMID:26459072

  1. Neonicotinoid pesticides severely affect honey bee queens

    PubMed Central

    Williams, Geoffrey R.; Troxler, Aline; Retschnig, Gina; Roth, Kaspar; Yañez, Orlando; Shutler, Dave; Neumann, Peter; Gauthier, Laurent

    2015-01-01

    Queen health is crucial to colony survival of social bees. Recently, queen failure has been proposed to be a major driver of managed honey bee colony losses, yet few data exist concerning effects of environmental stressors on queens. Here we demonstrate for the first time that exposure to field-realistic concentrations of neonicotinoid pesticides during development can severely affect queens of western honey bees (Apis mellifera). In pesticide-exposed queens, reproductive anatomy (ovaries) and physiology (spermathecal-stored sperm quality and quantity), rather than flight behaviour, were compromised and likely corresponded to reduced queen success (alive and producing worker offspring). This study highlights the detriments of neonicotinoids to queens of environmentally and economically important social bees, and further strengthens the need for stringent risk assessments to safeguard biodiversity and ecosystem services that are vulnerable to these substances. PMID:26459072

  2. Potential exposure of pollinators to neonicotinoid insecticides from the use of insecticide seed treatments in the mid-southern United States.

    PubMed

    Stewart, Scott D; Lorenz, Gus M; Catchot, Angus L; Gore, Jeff; Cook, Don; Skinner, John; Mueller, Thomas C; Johnson, Donald R; Zawislak, Jon; Barber, Jonathan

    2014-08-19

    Research was done during 2012 to evaluate the potential exposure of pollinators to neonicotinoid insecticides used as seed treatments on corn, cotton, and soybean. Samples were collected from small plot evaluations of seed treatments and from commercial fields in agricultural production areas in Arkansas, Mississippi, and Tennessee. In total, 560 samples were analyzed for concentrations of clothianidin, imidacloprid, thiamethoxam, and their metabolites. These included pollen from corn and cotton, nectar from cotton, flowers from soybean, honey bees, Apis mellifera L., and pollen carried by foragers returning to hives, preplanting and in-season soil samples, and wild flowers adjacent to recently planted fields. Neonicotinoid insecticides were detected at a level of 1 ng/g or above in 23% of wild flower samples around recently planted fields, with an average detection level of about 10 ng/g. We detected neonicotinoid insecticides in the soil of production fields prior to planting at an average concentration of about 10 ng/g, and over 80% of the samples having some insecticide present. Only 5% of foraging honey bees tested positive for the presence of neonicotinoid insecticides, and there was only one trace detection (< 1 ng/g) in pollen being carried by those bees. Soybean flowers, cotton pollen, and cotton nectar contained little or no neonicotinoids resulting from insecticide seed treatments. Average levels of neonicotinoid insecticides in corn pollen ranged from less than 1 to 6 ng/g. The highest neonicotinoid concentrations were found in soil collected during early flowering from insecticide seed treatment trials. However, these levels were generally not well correlated with neonicotinoid concentrations in flowers, pollen, or nectar. Concentrations in flowering structures were well below defined levels of concern thought to cause acute mortality in honey bees. The potential implications of our findings are discussed. PMID:25010122

  3. Risks of neonicotinoid insecticides to honeybees

    PubMed Central

    Fairbrother, Anne; Purdy, John; Anderson, Troy; Fell, Richard

    2014-01-01

    The European honeybee, Apis mellifera, is an important pollinator of agricultural crops. Since 2006, when unexpectedly high colony losses were first reported, articles have proliferated in the popular press suggesting a range of possible causes and raising alarm over the general decline of bees. Suggested causes include pesticides, genetically modified crops, habitat fragmentation, and introduced diseases and parasites. Scientists have concluded that multiple factors in various combinations—including mites, fungi, viruses, and pesticides, as well as other factors such as reduction in forage, poor nutrition, and queen failure—are the most probable cause of elevated colony loss rates. Investigators and regulators continue to focus on the possible role that insecticides, particularly the neonicotinoids, may play in honeybee health. Neonicotinoid insecticides are insect neurotoxicants with desirable features such as broad-spectrum activity, low application rates, low mammalian toxicity, upward systemic movement in plants, and versatile application methods. Their distribution throughout the plant, including pollen, nectar, and guttation fluids, poses particular concern for exposure to pollinators. The authors describe how neonicotinoids interact with the nervous system of honeybees and affect individual honeybees in laboratory situations. Because honeybees are social insects, colony effects in semifield and field studies are discussed. The authors conclude with a review of current and proposed guidance in the United States and Europe for assessing the risks of pesticides to honeybees. PMID:24692231

  4. Risks of neonicotinoid insecticides to honeybees.

    PubMed

    Fairbrother, Anne; Purdy, John; Anderson, Troy; Fell, Richard

    2014-04-01

    The European honeybee, Apis mellifera, is an important pollinator of agricultural crops. Since 2006, when unexpectedly high colony losses were first reported, articles have proliferated in the popular press suggesting a range of possible causes and raising alarm over the general decline of bees. Suggested causes include pesticides, genetically modified crops, habitat fragmentation, and introduced diseases and parasites. Scientists have concluded that multiple factors in various combinations-including mites, fungi, viruses, and pesticides, as well as other factors such as reduction in forage, poor nutrition, and queen failure-are the most probable cause of elevated colony loss rates. Investigators and regulators continue to focus on the possible role that insecticides, particularly the neonicotinoids, may play in honeybee health. Neonicotinoid insecticides are insect neurotoxicants with desirable features such as broad-spectrum activity, low application rates, low mammalian toxicity, upward systemic movement in plants, and versatile application methods. Their distribution throughout the plant, including pollen, nectar, and guttation fluids, poses particular concern for exposure to pollinators. The authors describe how neonicotinoids interact with the nervous system of honeybees and affect individual honeybees in laboratory situations. Because honeybees are social insects, colony effects in semifield and field studies are discussed. The authors conclude with a review of current and proposed guidance in the United States and Europe for assessing the risks of pesticides to honeybees. PMID:24692231

  5. Environmental fate and exposure; neonicotinoids and fipronil.

    PubMed

    Bonmatin, J-M; Giorio, C; Girolami, V; Goulson, D; Kreutzweiser, D P; Krupke, C; Liess, M; Long, E; Marzaro, M; Mitchell, E A D; Noome, D A; Simon-Delso, N; Tapparo, A

    2015-01-01

    Systemic insecticides are applied to plants using a wide variety of methods, ranging from foliar sprays to seed treatments and soil drenches. Neonicotinoids and fipronil are among the most widely used pesticides in the world. Their popularity is largely due to their high toxicity to invertebrates, the ease and flexibility with which they can be applied, their long persistence, and their systemic nature, which ensures that they spread to all parts of the target crop. However, these properties also increase the probability of environmental contamination and exposure of nontarget organisms. Environmental contamination occurs via a number of routes including dust generated during drilling of dressed seeds, contamination and accumulation in arable soils and soil water, runoff into waterways, and uptake of pesticides by nontarget plants via their roots or dust deposition on leaves. Persistence in soils, waterways, and nontarget plants is variable but can be prolonged; for example, the half-lives of neonicotinoids in soils can exceed 1,000 days, so they can accumulate when used repeatedly. Similarly, they can persist in woody plants for periods exceeding 1 year. Breakdown results in toxic metabolites, though concentrations of these in the environment are rarely measured. Overall, there is strong evidence that soils, waterways, and plants in agricultural environments and neighboring areas are contaminated with variable levels of neonicotinoids or fipronil mixtures and their metabolites (soil, parts per billion (ppb)-parts per million (ppm) range; water, parts per trillion (ppt)-ppb range; and plants, ppb-ppm range). This provides multiple routes for chronic (and acute in some cases) exposure of nontarget animals. For example, pollinators are exposed through direct contact with dust during drilling; consumption of pollen, nectar, or guttation drops from seed-treated crops, water, and consumption of contaminated pollen and nectar from wild flowers and trees growing near

  6. Liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry analysis of neonicotinoid pesticides and 6-chloronicotinic acid in environmental water with direct aqueous injection.

    PubMed

    Hao, Chunyan; Noestheden, Matthew R; Zhao, Xiaoming; Morse, David

    2016-06-21

    An efficient, high throughput and cost-effective direct aqueous injection approach for the analysis of neonicotinoid pesticides and a common metabolite in environmental water has been described here. The method determines eight neonicotinoid pesticides (acetamiprid, clothianidin, dinotefuran, flonicamid, imidacloprid, nitenpyram, thiacloprid, thiamethoxam) and 6-chloronicotinic acid (a common metabolite of the first generation neonicotinoids, acetamiprid, imidacloprid, nitenpyram and thiacloprid) without any sample enrichment/cleanup steps. The method detection limits are 2-8 ng/L for the neonicotinoids and 93 ng/L for 6-chloronicotinic acid. The performance of the QTRAP(®)5500 mass spectrometer was compared against a 4000QTRAP(®), and a QTRAP(®)6500, to provide insights for future method transfer among different generations of instrumentations. Critical mass spectrometric parameters such as collision energy were quite consistent among the three instruments evaluated. However, increased chemical background levels for some target compounds on the more sensitive instruments were observed. The application of differential ion mobility spectrometry combined with tandem mass spectrometry was demonstrated to have great potential in reducing chemical background and/or isobaric interferences inherited in sample matrices. This ISO 17025 accredited method was employed to quantitate neonicotinoids in Ontario stream water samples. Good correlation for analytical results of this direct aqueous injection approach and a previously published solid phase extraction approach warrant high confidence in data quality. PMID:27188316

  7. Insight into nucleon structure from generalized parton distributions

    SciTech Connect

    J.W. Negele; R.C. Brower; P. Dreher; R. Edwards; G. Fleming; Ph. Hagler; Th. Lippert; A.V.Pochinsky; D.B. Renner; D. Richards; K. Schilling; W. Schroers

    2004-03-01

    The lowest three moments of generalized parton distributions are calculated in full QCD and provide new insight into the behavior of nucleon electromagnetic form factors, the origin of the nucleon spin, and the transverse structure of the nucleon.

  8. Are neonicotinoid insecticides driving declines of widespread butterflies?

    PubMed Central

    Bunnefeld, Nils; Wilson, John McVean; Botham, Marc S.; Brereton, Tom M.; Fox, Richard; Goulson, Dave

    2015-01-01

    There has been widespread concern that neonicotinoid pesticides may be adversely impacting wild and managed bees for some years, but recently attention has shifted to examining broader effects they may be having on biodiversity. For example in the Netherlands, declines in insectivorous birds are positively associated with levels of neonicotinoid pollution in surface water. In England, the total abundance of widespread butterfly species declined by 58% on farmed land between 2000 and 2009 despite both a doubling in conservation spending in the UK, and predictions that climate change should benefit most species. Here we build models of the UK population indices from 1985 to 2012 for 17 widespread butterfly species that commonly occur at farmland sites. Of the factors we tested, three correlated significantly with butterfly populations. Summer temperature and the index for a species the previous year are both positively associated with butterfly indices. By contrast, the number of hectares of farmland where neonicotinoid pesticides are used is negatively associated with butterfly indices. Indices for 15 of the 17 species show negative associations with neonicotinoid usage. The declines in butterflies have largely occurred in England, where neonicotinoid usage is at its highest. In Scotland, where neonicotinoid usage is comparatively low, butterfly numbers are stable. Further research is needed urgently to show whether there is a causal link between neonicotinoid usage and the decline of widespread butterflies or whether it simply represents a proxy for other environmental factors associated with intensive agriculture. PMID:26623186

  9. Specific Synergist for Neonicotinoid Insecticides: IPPA08, a cis-Neonicotinoid Compound with a Unique Oxabridged Substructure.

    PubMed

    Bao, Haibo; Shao, Xusheng; Zhang, Yixi; Deng, Yayun; Xu, Xiaoyong; Liu, Zewen; Li, Zhong

    2016-06-29

    Insecticide synergists are key components to increase the control efficacy and reduce active ingredient use. Here, we describe a novel insecticide synergist with activity specific for insecticidal neonicotinoids. The synergist IPPA08, a cis configuration neonicotinoid compound with a unique oxabridged substructure, could increase the toxicity of most neonicotinoid insecticides belonging to the Insecticide Resistance Action Committee (IRAC) 4A subgroup against a range of insect species, although IPPA08 itself was almost inactive to insects at synergistic concentrations. Unfortunately, similar effects were observed on the honey bee (Apis mellifera) and the brown planthopper (Nilaparvata lugens), resistant to imidacloprid. IPPA08 did not show any effects on toxicity of insecticides with different targets, which made us define it as a neonicotinoid-specific synergist. Unlike most insecticide synergists, by inhibition of activities of detoxification enzymes, IPPA08 showed no effects on enzyme activities. The results revealed that IPPA08 worked as a synergist through a distinct way. Although the modulating insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs, targets of neonicotinoid insecticides) were supposed as a possible mode of action for IPPA08 as a neonicotinoid-specific synergist, direct evidence is needed in further studies. In insect pest control, IPPA08 acts as a target synergist to increase neonicotinoid toxicity and reduce the amount of neonicotinoid used. Combinations of IPPA08 and insecticidal neonicotinoids may be developed into new insecticide formulations. In summary, combining an active ingredient with a "custom" synergist appears to be a very promising approach for the development of effective new insecticide products. PMID:27281691

  10. New insights into nucleolar structure and function

    PubMed Central

    Lam, Yun Wah

    2015-01-01

    The nucleolus is a non-membrane-bound nuclear organelle found in all eukaryotes. It is the quintessential ‘RNA-seeded’ nuclear body, forming around specific chromosomal features called nucleolar organizing regions that contain arrays of ribosomal DNA. Assembly is triggered by activation of RNA polymerase I-mediated transcription and regulated in mammalian cells in a cell cycle-dependent manner. Although the nucleolus is best known for its role in coordinating ribosome biogenesis, biochemical and proteomic analyses have revealed a much wider functional complexity than previously appreciated, including roles in cell cycle regulation, DNA damage sensing and repair, pre-mRNA processing, telomere metabolism, processing of non-coding RNAs, and coordination of the cellular response to various stresses. Despite these advances, much remains to be learned about the full range of biological processes that occur within, or involve, this organelle and how its assembly/disassembly and functional reorganization in response to various stimuli are regulated. Here, we review the impact of recent studies that provide major insights into these fundamental questions, and we highlight the therapeutic potential of targeting nucleolar pathways. PMID:26097721

  11. Structural insights into ABC transporter mechanism

    SciTech Connect

    Oldham, Michael L.; Davidson, Amy L.; Chen, Jue

    2010-07-27

    ATP-binding cassette (ABC) transporters utilize the energy from ATP hydrolysis to transport substances across the membrane. In recent years, crystal structures of several ABC transporters have become available. These structures show that both importers and exporters oscillate between two conformations: an inward-facing conformation with the substrate translocation pathway open to the cytoplasm and an outward-facing conformation with the translocation pathway facing the opposite side of the membrane. In this review, conformational differences found in the structures of homologous ABC transporters are analyzed to understand how alternating-access is achieved. It appears that rigid-body rotations of the transmembrane subunits, coinciding with the opening and closing of the nucleotide-binding subunits, couples ATP hydrolysis to substrate translocation.

  12. The Pion cloud: Insights into hadron structure

    SciTech Connect

    A.W. Thomas

    2007-11-01

    Modern nuclear theory presents a fascinating study in contrasting approaches to the structure of hadrons and nuclei. Nowhere is this more apparent than in the treatment of the pion cloud. As this discussion really begins with Yukawa, it is entirely appropriate that this invited lecture at the Yukawa Institute in Kyoto should deal with the issue.

  13. Structural insights into the translational infidelity mechanism

    PubMed Central

    Rozov, Alexey; Demeshkina, Natalia; Westhof, Eric; Yusupov, Marat; Yusupova, Gulnara

    2015-01-01

    The decoding of mRNA on the ribosome is the least accurate process during genetic information transfer. Here we propose a unified decoding mechanism based on 11 high-resolution X-ray structures of the 70S ribosome that explains the occurrence of missense errors during translation. We determined ribosome structures in rare states where incorrect tRNAs were incorporated into the peptidyl-tRNA-binding site. These structures show that in the codon–anticodon duplex, a G·U mismatch adopts the Watson–Crick geometry, indicating a shift in the tautomeric equilibrium or ionization of the nucleobase. Additional structures with mismatches in the 70S decoding centre show that the binding of any tRNA induces identical rearrangements in the centre, which favours either isosteric or close to the Watson–Crick geometry codon–anticodon pairs. Overall, the results suggest that a mismatch escapes discrimination by preserving the shape of a Watson–Crick pair and indicate that geometric selection via tautomerism or ionization dominates the translational infidelity mechanism. PMID:26037619

  14. The global status of insect resistance to neonicotinoid insecticides.

    PubMed

    Bass, Chris; Denholm, Ian; Williamson, Martin S; Nauen, Ralf

    2015-06-01

    The first neonicotinoid insecticide, imidacloprid, was launched in 1991. Today this class of insecticides comprises at least seven major compounds with a market share of more than 25% of total global insecticide sales. Neonicotinoid insecticides are highly selective agonists of insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and provide farmers with invaluable, highly effective tools against some of the world's most destructive crop pests. These include sucking pests such as aphids, whiteflies, and planthoppers, and also some coleopteran, dipteran and lepidopteran species. Although many insect species are still successfully controlled by neonicotinoids, their popularity has imposed a mounting selection pressure for resistance, and in several species resistance has now reached levels that compromise the efficacy of these insecticides. Research to understand the molecular basis of neonicotinoid resistance has revealed both target-site and metabolic mechanisms conferring resistance. For target-site resistance, field-evolved mutations have only been characterized in two aphid species. Metabolic resistance appears much more common, with the enhanced expression of one or more cytochrome P450s frequently reported in resistant strains. Despite the current scale of resistance, neonicotinoids remain a major component of many pest control programmes, and resistance management strategies, based on mode of action rotation, are of crucial importance in preventing resistance becoming more widespread. In this review we summarize the current status of neonicotinoid resistance, the biochemical and molecular mechanisms involved, and the implications for resistance management. PMID:26047114

  15. Seed coating with a neonicotinoid insecticide negatively affects wild bees.

    PubMed

    Rundlöf, Maj; Andersson, Georg K S; Bommarco, Riccardo; Fries, Ingemar; Hederström, Veronica; Herbertsson, Lina; Jonsson, Ove; Klatt, Björn K; Pedersen, Thorsten R; Yourstone, Johanna; Smith, Henrik G

    2015-05-01

    Understanding the effects of neonicotinoid insecticides on bees is vital because of reported declines in bee diversity and distribution and the crucial role bees have as pollinators in ecosystems and agriculture. Neonicotinoids are suspected to pose an unacceptable risk to bees, partly because of their systemic uptake in plants, and the European Union has therefore introduced a moratorium on three neonicotinoids as seed coatings in flowering crops that attract bees. The moratorium has been criticized for being based on weak evidence, particularly because effects have mostly been measured on bees that have been artificially fed neonicotinoids. Thus, the key question is how neonicotinoids influence bees, and wild bees in particular, in real-world agricultural landscapes. Here we show that a commonly used insecticide seed coating in a flowering crop can have serious consequences for wild bees. In a study with replicated and matched landscapes, we found that seed coating with Elado, an insecticide containing a combination of the neonicotinoid clothianidin and the non-systemic pyrethroid β-cyfluthrin, applied to oilseed rape seeds, reduced wild bee density, solitary bee nesting, and bumblebee colony growth and reproduction under field conditions. Hence, such insecticidal use can pose a substantial risk to wild bees in agricultural landscapes, and the contribution of pesticides to the global decline of wild bees may have been underestimated. The lack of a significant response in honeybee colonies suggests that reported pesticide effects on honeybees cannot always be extrapolated to wild bees. PMID:25901681

  16. Molecular Effects of Neonicotinoids in Honey Bees (Apis mellifera).

    PubMed

    Christen, Verena; Mittner, Fabian; Fent, Karl

    2016-04-01

    Neonicotinoids are implicated in the decline of bee populations. As agonists of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, they disturb acetylcholine receptor signaling leading to neurotoxicity. Several behavioral studies showed the link between neonicotinoid exposure and adverse effects on foraging activity and reproduction. However, molecular effects underlying these effects are poorly understood. Here we elucidated molecular effects at environmental realistic levels of three neonicotinoids and nicotine, and compared laboratory studies to field exposures with acetamiprid. We assessed transcriptional alterations of eight selected genes in caged honey bees exposed to different concentrations of the neonicotinoids acetamiprid, clothianidin, imidacloporid, and thiamethoxam, as well as nicotine. We determined transcripts of several targets, including nicotinic acetylcholine receptor α 1 and α 2 subunit, the multifunctional gene vitellogenin, immune system genes apidaecin and defensin-1, stress-related gene catalase and two genes linked to memory formation, pka and creb. Vitellogenin showed a strong increase upon neonicotinoid exposures in the laboratory and field, while creb and pka transcripts were down-regulated. The induction of vitellogenin suggests adverse effects on foraging activity, whereas creb and pka down-regulation may be implicated in decreased long-term memory formation. Transcriptional alterations occurred at environmental concentrations and provide an explanation for the molecular basis of observed adverse effects of neonicotinoids to bees. PMID:26990785

  17. Insight into Amyloid Structure Using Chemical Probes

    PubMed Central

    Reinke, Ashley A.; Gestwicki, Jason E.

    2011-01-01

    Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a common neurodegenerative disorder characterized by the deposition of amyloids in the brain. One prominent form of amyloid is composed of repeating units of the amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide. Over the past decade, it has become clear that these Aβ amyloids are not homogeneous; rather, they are composed of a series of structures varying in their overall size and shape and the number of Aβ peptides they contain. Recent theories suggest that these different amyloid conformations may play distinct roles in disease, although their relative contributions are still being discovered. Here, we review how chemical probes, such as congo red, thioflavin T and their derivatives, have been powerful tools for better understanding amyloid structure and function. Moreover, we discuss how design and deployment of conformationally selective probes might be used to test emerging models of AD. PMID:21457473

  18. BK channel activation: structural and functional insights

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Urvi S.; Cui, Jianmin

    2010-01-01

    The voltage and Ca2+ activated K+ (BK) channels are involved in the regulation of neurotransmitter release and neuronal excitability. Structurally, BK channels are homologous to voltage- and ligand-gated K+ channels, having a voltage sensor and pore as the membrane-spanning domain and a cytosolic domain containing metal binding sites. Recently published electron cryomicroscopy (cryo-EM) and X-ray crystallographic structures of the BK channel provided the first look into the assembly of these domains, corroborating the close interactions among these domains during channel gating that have been suggested by functional studies. This review discusses these latest findings and an emerging new understanding about BK channel gating and implications for diseases such as epilepsy, in which mutations in BK channel genes have been associated. PMID:20663573

  19. Managing resistance is critical to future use of Pyrethroids and Neonicotinoids

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Synthetic pyrethroids and neonicotinoids are the most readily available alternatives to the organophosphate and carbamate insecticides. Pyrethroids have become widely used in California, and problems with insecticide resistance and non-target impacts have already been identified. Neonicotinoids are ...

  20. Monitoring changes in bemisia tabaci susceptibility to neonicotinoid insecticides in Arizona and California

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Laboratory bioassays were carried out on field-collected and laboratory strains of Bemisia tabaci to evaluate relative toxicities of four neonicotinoid insecticides: acetamiprid, dinotefuran, imidacloprid and thiamethoxam. Susceptibility to all four neonicotinoids in leaf-uptake bioassays varied co...

  1. Structural Insights into Sulfite Oxidase Deficiency

    SciTech Connect

    Karakas,E.; Wilson, H.; Graf, T.; Xiang, S.; Jaramillo-Busquets, S.; Rajagopalan, K.; Kisker, C.

    2005-01-01

    Sulfite oxidase deficiency is a lethal genetic disease that results from defects either in the genes encoding proteins involved in molybdenum cofactor biosynthesis or in the sulfite oxidase gene itself. Several point mutations in the sulfite oxidase gene have been identified from patients suffering from this disease worldwide. Although detailed biochemical analyses have been carried out on these mutations, no structural data could be obtained because of problems in crystallizing recombinant human and rat sulfite oxidases and the failure to clone the chicken sulfite oxidase gene. We synthesized the gene for chicken sulfite oxidase de novo, working backward from the amino acid sequence of the native chicken liver enzyme by PCR amplification of a series of 72 overlapping primers. The recombinant protein displayed the characteristic absorption spectrum of sulfite oxidase and exhibited steady state and rapid kinetic parameters comparable with those of the tissue-derived enzyme. We solved the crystal structures of the wild type and the sulfite oxidase deficiency-causing R138Q (R160Q in humans) variant of recombinant chicken sulfite oxidase in the resting and sulfate-bound forms. Significant alterations in the substrate-binding pocket were detected in the structure of the mutant, and a comparison between the wild type and mutant protein revealed that the active site residue Arg-450 adopts different conformations in the presence and absence of bound sulfate. The size of the binding pocket is thereby considerably reduced, and its position relative to the cofactor is shifted, causing an increase in the distance of the sulfur atom of the bound sulfate to the molybdenum.

  2. New insight into structural heterogeneity beneath Taiwan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Z.

    2007-12-01

    To know whether the Eurasian lithosphere subducts beneath Taiwan is an important issue for a better understanding of mountain building, arc magmatism and plate collision in the western Pacific region. High- resolution 3-D velocity images are estimated at depths of 0-400 km beneath Taiwan by inverting a large number of arrival times from local and teleseismic events simultaneously. We used 215,676 P-wave arrival time data from 6782 shallow and intermediate-depth earthquakes that are located in and around the Taiwan Island. We also used 12,078 P-wave arrival times that are collected from 3-componenet seismograms of 1108 teleseismic events recorded by the networks installed by Taiwan, Japan and China. Our tomographic images provide further direct geophysical evidence for the tectonic models proposed by previous studies and revealed some new features of structural heterogeneity related to the subducted Eurasian lithosphere and the subducting Philippine Sea slab. Low-velocity anomalies beneath the active volcanoes are visible in the subduction zone of Taiwan, which might caused by the collision between the subducted Eurasian plate and the subducting Philippine Sea slab. In the southern portion of Taiwan, the Eurasian lithosphere is clearly imaged as a high velocity zone with a thickness of 65-80 km and subducted down to a depth of 300 km, whilst it has not been observed beneath North Taiwan. Despite that the existence of subducted Eurasia slab beneath Taiwan has been documented by Lellamant et al. (2001), the present study is the first one to provide high-resolution image and indicate that the Eurasian lithosphere stops at the depth of 300 km beneath South Taiwan but not under North Taiwan. Meanwhile, the present tomographic results are also coherent well with the geology and with plate reconstructions in the region. The previous study proposed that the plate convergence rate is constant at about 7 cm/yr (Seno et al., 1993), it takes about 4-5 Ma for the subducted slab

  3. Neonicotinoid insecticides can serve as inadvertent insect contraceptives.

    PubMed

    Straub, Lars; Villamar-Bouza, Laura; Bruckner, Selina; Chantawannakul, Panuwan; Gauthier, Laurent; Khongphinitbunjong, Kitiphong; Retschnig, Gina; Troxler, Aline; Vidondo, Beatriz; Neumann, Peter; Williams, Geoffrey R

    2016-07-27

    There is clear evidence for sublethal effects of neonicotinoid insecticides on non-target ecosystem service-providing insects. However, their possible impact on male insect reproduction is currently unknown, despite the key role of sex. Here, we show that two neonicotinoids (4.5 ppb thiamethoxam and 1.5 ppb clothianidin) significantly reduce the reproductive capacity of male honeybees (drones), Apis mellifera Drones were obtained from colonies exposed to the neonicotinoid insecticides or controls, and subsequently maintained in laboratory cages until they reached sexual maturity. While no significant effects were observed for male teneral (newly emerged adult) body mass and sperm quantity, the data clearly showed reduced drone lifespan, as well as reduced sperm viability (percentage living versus dead) and living sperm quantity by 39%. Our results demonstrate for the first time that neonicotinoid insecticides can negatively affect male insect reproductive capacity, and provide a possible mechanistic explanation for managed honeybee queen failure and wild insect pollinator decline. The widespread prophylactic use of neonicotinoids may have previously overlooked inadvertent contraceptive effects on non-target insects, thereby limiting conservation efforts. PMID:27466446

  4. Neonicotinoid insecticides can serve as inadvertent insect contraceptives

    PubMed Central

    Villamar-Bouza, Laura; Bruckner, Selina; Chantawannakul, Panuwan; Gauthier, Laurent; Khongphinitbunjong, Kitiphong; Retschnig, Gina; Troxler, Aline; Vidondo, Beatriz; Neumann, Peter; Williams, Geoffrey R.

    2016-01-01

    There is clear evidence for sublethal effects of neonicotinoid insecticides on non-target ecosystem service-providing insects. However, their possible impact on male insect reproduction is currently unknown, despite the key role of sex. Here, we show that two neonicotinoids (4.5 ppb thiamethoxam and 1.5 ppb clothianidin) significantly reduce the reproductive capacity of male honeybees (drones), Apis mellifera. Drones were obtained from colonies exposed to the neonicotinoid insecticides or controls, and subsequently maintained in laboratory cages until they reached sexual maturity. While no significant effects were observed for male teneral (newly emerged adult) body mass and sperm quantity, the data clearly showed reduced drone lifespan, as well as reduced sperm viability (percentage living versus dead) and living sperm quantity by 39%. Our results demonstrate for the first time that neonicotinoid insecticides can negatively affect male insect reproductive capacity, and provide a possible mechanistic explanation for managed honeybee queen failure and wild insect pollinator decline. The widespread prophylactic use of neonicotinoids may have previously overlooked inadvertent contraceptive effects on non-target insects, thereby limiting conservation efforts. PMID:27466446

  5. Neonicotinoids as seed potato treatments to control wireworms.

    PubMed

    Huiting, H F; Ester, A

    2009-01-01

    A series of field trials were carried out from 2000 to 2003. Neonicotinoid insecticides applied as seed potato treatments at planting were tested to control wireworms in potato crops. Compounds were applied as drench or spray. Neonicotinoids tested were imidacloprid at rates of 35, 70, 88, and 175 g a.i.; thiamethoxam at 17.5, 35, 50, 70, and 140 g a.i.; and thiacloprid at 72 and 144 g a.i. per metric ton seed potatoes. Treatment with imidacloprid at 70 g/ton seed and thiamethoxam at 50 g/ton seed showed significant control of wireworms at harvest but thiacloprid showed insufficient protection. No phytotoxicity was recorded at harvest. Prospects and benefits of seed potato treatments with neonicotinoids are discussed, including lowering of the amount of insecticide needed for adequate protection. PMID:20218529

  6. Signal Transduction in Histidine Kinases: Insights from New Structures

    PubMed Central

    Bhate, Manasi P.; Molnar, Kathleen S.; Goulian, Mark; DeGrado, William F.

    2015-01-01

    Histidine kinases (HKs) are major players in bacterial signaling. There has been an explosion of new HK crystal structures in the last five years. We globally analyze the structures of HKs to yield insights into the mechanisms by which signals are transmitted to and across protein structures in this family. We interpret known enzymological data in the context of new structural data to show how asymmetry across the dimer interface is a key feature of signal transduction in HKs, and discuss how different HK domains undergo asymmetric-to-symmetric transitions during signal transduction and catalysis. A thermodynamic framework for signaling that encompasses these various properties is presented and the consequences of weak thermodynamic coupling are discussed. The synthesis of observations from enzymology, structural biology, protein engineering and thermodynamics paves the way for a deeper molecular understanding of histidine kinase signal transduction. PMID:25982528

  7. The neonicotinoid imidacloprid, and the pyrethroid deltamethrin, are antagonists of the insect Rdl GABA receptor.

    PubMed

    Taylor-Wells, Jennina; Brooke, Basil D; Bermudez, Isabel; Jones, Andrew K

    2015-11-01

    A mutation in the second transmembrane domain of the GABA receptor subunit, Rdl, is associated with resistance to insecticides such as dieldrin and fipronil. Molecular cloning of Rdl cDNA from a strain of the malaria mosquito, Anopheles gambiae, which is highly resistant to dieldrin revealed this mutation (A296G) as well as another mutation in the third transmembrane domain (T345M). Wild-type, A296G, T345M and A296G + T345M homomultimeric Rdl were expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes and their sensitivities to fipronil, deltamethrin, 1,1,1-trichloro-2,2-bis(p-chlorophenyl) ethane (DDT), imidacloprid and spinosad were measured using two-electrode voltage-clamp electrophysiology. Spinosad and DDT had no agonist or antagonist actions on Rdl. However, fipronil, deltamethrin and imidacloprid decreased GABA-evoked currents. These antagonistic actions were either reduced or abolished with the A296G and the A296G + T345M mutations while T345M alone appeared to have no significant effect. In conclusion, this study identifies another mutation in the mosquito Rdl that is associated with insecticide resistance. While T345M itself does not affect insecticide sensitivity, it may serve to offset the structural impact of A296G. The present study also highlights Rdl as a potential secondary target for neonicotinoids and pyrethroids. We show for the first time that deltamethrin (a pyrethroid insecticide) and imidacloprid (a neonicotinoid insecticide) act directly on the insect GABA receptor, Rdl. Our findings highlight Rdl as a potential secondary target of pyrethroids and neonicotinoids mutations in which may contribute to resistance to these widely used insecticides. PMID:26296809

  8. Structure-informed insights for NLR functioning in plant immunity.

    PubMed

    Sukarta, Octavina C A; Slootweg, Erik J; Goverse, Aska

    2016-08-01

    To respond to foreign invaders, plants have evolved a cell autonomous multilayered immune system consisting of extra- and intracellular immune receptors. Nucleotide binding and oligomerization domain (NOD)-like receptors (NLRs) mediate recognition of pathogen effectors inside the cell and trigger a host specific defense response, often involving controlled cell death. NLRs consist of a central nucleotide-binding domain, which is flanked by an N-terminal CC or TIR domain and a C-terminal leucine-rich repeat domain (LRR). These multidomain proteins function as a molecular switch and their activity is tightly controlled by intra and inter-molecular interactions. In contrast to metazoan NLRs, the structural basis underlying NLR functioning as a pathogen sensor and activator of immune responses in plants is largely unknown. However, the first crystal structures of a number of plant NLR domains were recently obtained. In addition, biochemical and structure-informed analyses revealed novel insights in the cooperation between NLR domains and the formation of pre- and post activation complexes, including the coordinated activity of NLR pairs as pathogen sensor and executor of immune responses. Moreover, the discovery of novel integrated domains underscores the structural diversity of NLRs and provides alternative models for how these immune receptors function in plants. In this review, we will highlight these recent advances to provide novel insights in the structural, biochemical and molecular aspects involved in plant NLR functioning. PMID:27208725

  9. Structural insights into protein-metal ion partnerships.

    PubMed

    Barondeau, David P; Getzoff, Elizabeth D

    2004-12-01

    New metalloprotein structures continue to provide discoveries regarding protein-metal ion partnerships. Many recent structures reveal metal ion sites that control or are controlled by protein conformational change, including modulation by alternative splice variants and striking conformational changes. Only a few novel catalytic metal centers have been revealed recently, such as the surprising Ni-hook superoxide dismutase catalytic site and the cubane-like Mn(3)CaO(4) photosynthetic oxygen-evolving center. However, important new variations on old heme themes, breakthroughs in the fields of metal ion regulation and metallochaperones, and captivating insights into partnerships between proteins and minerals have also been described. Very high resolution metal site structures and metalloprotein design will be increasingly important in order to leverage the wealth of native metalloprotein structures into a deep understanding of metal ion site specificity and activity. PMID:15582401

  10. Reconciling laboratory and field assessments of neonicotinoid toxicity to honeybees.

    PubMed

    Henry, Mickaël; Cerrutti, Nicolas; Aupinel, Pierrick; Decourtye, Axel; Gayrard, Mélanie; Odoux, Jean-François; Pissard, Aurélien; Rüger, Charlotte; Bretagnolle, Vincent

    2015-11-22

    European governments have banned the use of three common neonicotinoid pesticides due to insufficiently identified risks to bees. This policy decision is controversial given the absence of clear consistency between toxicity assessments of those substances in the laboratory and in the field. Although laboratory trials report deleterious effects in honeybees at trace levels, field surveys reveal no decrease in the performance of honeybee colonies in the vicinity of treated fields. Here we provide the missing link, showing that individual honeybees near thiamethoxam-treated fields do indeed disappear at a faster rate, but the impact of this is buffered by the colonies' demographic regulation response. Although we could ascertain the exposure pathway of thiamethoxam residues from treated flowers to honeybee dietary nectar, we uncovered an unexpected pervasive co-occurrence of similar concentrations of imidacloprid, another neonicotinoid normally restricted to non-entomophilous crops in the study country. Thus, its origin and transfer pathways through the succession of annual crops need be elucidated to conveniently appraise the risks of combined neonicotinoid exposures. This study reconciles the conflicting laboratory and field toxicity assessments of neonicotinoids on honeybees and further highlights the difficulty in actually detecting non-intentional effects on the field through conventional risk assessment methods. PMID:26582026

  11. Effective extraction method for determination of neonicotinoid residues in tea.

    PubMed

    Hou, Ru-Yan; Jiao, Wei-Ting; Qian, Xiao-San; Wang, Xiao-Hui; Xiao, Yu; Wan, Xiao-Chun

    2013-12-26

    Sample preparation using an absorbent for removal of polyphenols and a solid-phase extraction (SPE) cartridge for cleanup followed by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) has been investigated for the simultaneous determination of eight neonicotinoid insecticides (dinotefuran, nitenpyram, thiamethoxam, imidacloprid, clothianidin, imidaclothiz, acetamiprid, and thiacloprid). After tea samples were soaked with water and extracted with acetonitrile, sample extracts were treated with an appropriate amount of polyvinylpolypyrrolidone (PVPP) to effectively remove polyphenols. The treated extract was cleaned up with a Carb-PSA cartridge. Neonicotinoid insecticides were eluted with acetonitrile from the cartridge and dried. The extract was redissolved with methanol/water (1:9, v/v) and analyzed by conventional HPLC coupled with an ultraviolet detector. The recoveries of eight neonicotinoid insecticides in tea samples were 71.4-106.6% at 0.1-1.0 mg kg(-1) spiked levels. Relative standard deviations were <10% for all of the recovery tests. The established method was simple, effective, and accurate and could be used for monitoring neonicotinoid insecticides in tea. PMID:24308380

  12. Functional Insights from Glutamate Receptor Ion Channel Structures

    PubMed Central

    Kumar, Janesh; Mayer, Mark L.

    2014-01-01

    X-ray crystal structures for the soluble amino terminal and ligand binding domains of glutamate receptor ion channels, combined with a 3.6 Å resolution structure of the full length AMPA receptor GluA2 homotetramer, provide unique insights into the mechanisms of iGluR assembly and function. Increasingly sophisticated biochemical, computational and electrophysiological experiments are beginning to reveal the mechanism of action of partial agonists, and yield new models for the mechanism of action of allosteric modulators. Newly identified NMDA receptor ligands acting at novel sites offer hope for development of subtype selective modulators. Many issues remain unsolved, including the role of the ATD in AMPA receptor signaling, and the mechanisms by which auxiliary proteins regulate receptor activity. The structural basis for ion permeation and ion channel block also remain areas of uncertainty, and despite substantial progress, molecular dynamics simulations have yet to reveal how binding of glutamate opens the ion channel pore. PMID:22974439

  13. Emerging structural insights into the function of ionotropic glutamate receptors

    PubMed Central

    Karakas, Erkan; Regan, Michael C.; Furukawa, Hiro

    2015-01-01

    Summary Ionotropic glutamate receptors (iGluRs) are ligand-gated ion channels that mediate excitatory neurotransmission crucial for brain development and function including learning and memory formation. Recently a wealth of structural studies on iGluRs, including AMPA receptors (AMPARs), kainate receptors, and NMDA receptors (NMDARs) became available.. These studies showed structures of non-NMDARs including AMPAR and kainate receptor in various functional states, thereby providing the first visual sense of how non-NMDAR iGluRs may function in the context of homotetramers. Furthermore, they provided the first view of heterotetrameric NMDAR ion channels, which illuminated the similarities with and differences from non-NMDARs, thus raising a mechanistic distinction between the two groups of iGluRs. Here we review mechanistic insights into iGluR functions gained through structural studies of multiple groups. PMID:25941168

  14. The structural biology of HIV-1: mechanistic and therapeutic insights

    PubMed Central

    Engelman, Alan; Cherepanov, Peter

    2013-01-01

    Three-dimensional molecular structures can provide detailed information on biological mechanisms and, in cases where molecular function impacts on human health, significantly aid in the development of therapeutic interventions. Over the past 23 years, key components of the lentivirus HIV-1, including its envelope glycoproteins and capsid, and the replication enzymes reverse transcriptase, integrase and protease, have accordingly been scrutinized to near atomic scale resolution. Structural analyses of the interactions between viral and host cell components have moreover yielded key insights into the mechanisms of virus entry, chromosomal integration, transcription and egress from cells. Here, we review recent advances in HIV-1 structural biology, focusing on the impact these results have had on our understanding of virus replication and the development of new therapeutics. PMID:22421880

  15. Quantitative analysis of neonicotinoid insecticide residues in foods: implication for dietary exposures.

    PubMed

    Chen, Mei; Tao, Lin; McLean, John; Lu, Chensheng

    2014-07-01

    This study quantitatively measured neonicotinoids in various foods that are common to human consumption. All fruit and vegetable samples (except nectarine and tomato) and 90% of honey samples were detected positive for at least one neonicotinoid; 72% of fruits, 45% of vegetables, and 50% of honey samples contained at least two different neonicotinoids in one sample, with imidacloprid having the highest detection rate among all samples. All pollen samples from New Zealand contained multiple neonicotinoids, and five of seven pollens from Massachusetts detected positive for imidacloprid. These results show the prevalence of low-level neonicotinoid residues in fruits, vegetables, and honey that are readily available in the market for human consumption and in the environment where honeybees forage. In light of new reports of toxicological effects in mammals, the results strengthen the importance of assessing dietary neonicotinoid intakes and the potential human health effects. PMID:24933495

  16. Impacts of neonicotinoid use on long-term population changes in wild bees in England.

    PubMed

    Woodcock, Ben A; Isaac, Nicholas J B; Bullock, James M; Roy, David B; Garthwaite, David G; Crowe, Andrew; Pywell, Richard F

    2016-01-01

    Wild bee declines have been ascribed in part to neonicotinoid insecticides. While short-term laboratory studies on commercially bred species (principally honeybees and bumblebees) have identified sub-lethal effects, there is no strong evidence linking these insecticides to losses of the majority of wild bee species. We relate 18 years of UK national wild bee distribution data for 62 species to amounts of neonicotinoid use in oilseed rape. Using a multi-species dynamic Bayesian occupancy analysis, we find evidence of increased population extinction rates in response to neonicotinoid seed treatment use on oilseed rape. Species foraging on oilseed rape benefit from the cover of this crop, but were on average three times more negatively affected by exposure to neonicotinoids than non-crop foragers. Our results suggest that sub-lethal effects of neonicotinoids could scale up to cause losses of bee biodiversity. Restrictions on neonicotinoid use may reduce population declines. PMID:27529661

  17. Impacts of neonicotinoid use on long-term population changes in wild bees in England

    PubMed Central

    Woodcock, Ben A.; Isaac, Nicholas J. B.; Bullock, James M.; Roy, David B.; Garthwaite, David G.; Crowe, Andrew; Pywell, Richard F.

    2016-01-01

    Wild bee declines have been ascribed in part to neonicotinoid insecticides. While short-term laboratory studies on commercially bred species (principally honeybees and bumblebees) have identified sub-lethal effects, there is no strong evidence linking these insecticides to losses of the majority of wild bee species. We relate 18 years of UK national wild bee distribution data for 62 species to amounts of neonicotinoid use in oilseed rape. Using a multi-species dynamic Bayesian occupancy analysis, we find evidence of increased population extinction rates in response to neonicotinoid seed treatment use on oilseed rape. Species foraging on oilseed rape benefit from the cover of this crop, but were on average three times more negatively affected by exposure to neonicotinoids than non-crop foragers. Our results suggest that sub-lethal effects of neonicotinoids could scale up to cause losses of bee biodiversity. Restrictions on neonicotinoid use may reduce population declines. PMID:27529661

  18. Quantitative Analysis of Neonicotinoid Insecticide Residues in Foods: Implication for Dietary Exposures

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    This study quantitatively measured neonicotinoids in various foods that are common to human consumption. All fruit and vegetable samples (except nectarine and tomato) and 90% of honey samples were detected positive for at least one neonicotinoid; 72% of fruits, 45% of vegetables, and 50% of honey samples contained at least two different neonicotinoids in one sample, with imidacloprid having the highest detection rate among all samples. All pollen samples from New Zealand contained multiple neonicotinoids, and five of seven pollens from Massachusetts detected positive for imidacloprid. These results show the prevalence of low-level neonicotinoid residues in fruits, vegetables, and honey that are readily available in the market for human consumption and in the environment where honeybees forage. In light of new reports of toxicological effects in mammals, the results strengthen the importance of assessing dietary neonicotinoid intakes and the potential human health effects. PMID:24933495

  19. Structural Insights into Bacillus thuringiensis Cry, Cyt and Parasporin Toxins

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Chengchen; Wang, Bi-Cheng; Yu, Ziniu; Sun, Ming

    2014-01-01

    Since the first X-ray structure of Cry3Aa was revealed in 1991, numerous structures of B. thuringiensis toxins have been determined and published. In recent years, functional studies on the mode of action and resistance mechanism have been proposed, which notably promoted the developments of biological insecticides and insect-resistant transgenic crops. With the exploration of known pore-forming toxins (PFTs) structures, similarities between PFTs and B. thuringiensis toxins have provided great insights into receptor binding interactions and conformational changes from water-soluble to membrane pore-forming state of B. thuringiensis toxins. This review mainly focuses on the latest discoveries of the toxin working mechanism, with the emphasis on structural related progress. Based on the structural features, B. thuringiensis Cry, Cyt and parasporin toxins could be divided into three categories: three-domain type α-PFTs, Cyt toxin type β-PFTs and aerolysin type β-PFTs. Structures from each group are elucidated and discussed in relation to the latest data, respectively. PMID:25229189

  20. Neonicotinoid formaldehyde generators: possible mechanism of mouse-specific hepatotoxicity/hepatocarcinogenicity of thiamethoxam.

    PubMed

    Swenson, Tami L; Casida, John E

    2013-02-01

    Thiamethoxam (TMX), an important insecticide, is hepatotoxic and hepatocarcinogenic in mice but not rats. Studies of Syngenta Central Toxicology Laboratory on species specificity in metabolism established that TMX is a much better substrate for mouse liver microsomal CYPs than the corresponding rat or human enzymes in forming desmethyl-TMX (dm-TMX), which is also hepatotoxic, and clothianidin (CLO), which is not hepatotoxic or hepatocarcinogenic. They proposed that TMX hepatotoxicity/hepatocarcinogencity is due to dm-TMX and a further metabolite desmethyl-CLO (dm-CLO) (structurally analogous to a standard inducible nitric oxide synthase inhibitor) acting synergistically. The present study considers formation of formaldehyde (HCHO) and N-methylol intermediates as an alternative mechanism of TMX hepatotoxicity/hepatocarcinogenicity. Comparison of neonicotinoid metabolism by mouse, rat and human microsomes with NADPH showed two important points. First, TMX and dm-TMX yield more HCHO than any other commercial neonicotinoid. Second, mouse microsomes give much higher conversion than rat or human microsomes. These observations provide an alternative hypothesis of HCHO and N-methylol intermediates from CYP-mediated oxidative oxadiazinane ring cleavage as the bioactivated hepatotoxicants. However, the proposed mono-N-methylol CYP metabolites are not observed, possibly further reacting in situ. PMID:23220038

  1. Development of Immunoassay Based on Monoclonal Antibody Reacted with the Neonicotinoid Insecticides Clothianidin and Dinotefuran

    PubMed Central

    Uchigashima, Mikiko; Watanabe, Eiki; Ito, Shigekazu; Iwasa, Seiji; Miyake, Shiro

    2012-01-01

    Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) based on a monoclonal antibody (MoAb) was developed for the neonicotinoid insecticide clothianidin. A new clothianidin hapten (3-[5-(3-methyl-2-nitroguanidinomethyl)-1,3-thiazol-2-ylthio] propionic acid) was synthesized and conjugated to keyhole limpet hemocyanin, and was used for monoclonal antibody preparation. The resulting MoAb CTN-16A3-13 was characterized by a direct competitive ELISA (dc-ELISA). The 50% of inhibition concentration value with clothianidin was 4.4 ng/mL, and the working range was 1.5–15 ng/mL. The antibody showed high cross-reactivity (64%) to dinotefuran among the structurally related neonicotinoid insecticides. The recovery examinations of clothianidin for cucumber, tomato and apple showed highly agreement with the spiked concentrations; the recovery rate was between 104% and 124% and the coefficient of variation value was between 1.8% and 15%. Although the recovery rate of the dc-ELISA was slightly higher than that of HPLC analysis, the difference was small enough to accept the dc-ELISA as a useful method for residue analysis of clothianidin in garden crops. PMID:23202236

  2. Structural insights into bacterial recognition of intestinal mucins.

    PubMed

    Etzold, Sabrina; Juge, Nathalie

    2014-10-01

    The mucosal layer covering our gut epithelium represents the first line of host defenses against the luminal content, while enabling contacts between the resident microbiota and the host. Mucus is mainly composed of mucins, large glycoproteins containing a protein core and a high number of O-linked oligosaccharides. Mucin glycans act as binding sites or carbon sources for the intestinal microbes, thereby functioning as a host-specific determinant affecting the microbiota composition and human health. Reflecting the structural diversity of mucin glycans and their prime location, commensal and pathogenic microbes have evolved a range of adhesins allowing their interaction with the host. However, despite the recognised importance of mucin glycans in modulating intestinal homeostasis, information on carbohydrate-binding proteins from gut bacteria is disparate. This review is focussed on recent structural insights into host-microbe interactions mediated by mucins. PMID:25106027

  3. Biological Insights from Structures of Two-Component Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Rong; Stock, Ann M.

    2013-01-01

    Two-component signal transduction based on phosphotransfer from a histidine protein kinase to a response regulator protein is a prevalent strategy for coupling environmental stimuli to adaptive responses in bacteria. In both histidine kinases and response regulators, modular domains with conserved structures and biochemical activities adopt different conformational states in the presence of stimuli or upon phosphorylation, enabling a diverse array of regulatory mechanisms based on inhibitory and/or activating protein-protein interactions imparted by different domain arrangements. This review summarizes some of the recent structural work that has provided insight to the functioning of bacterial histidine kinases and response regulators. Particular emphasis is placed on identifying features that are expected to be conserved among different two-component proteins from those that are expected to differ, with the goal of defining the extent to which knowledge of previously characterized two-component proteins can be applied to newly discovered systems. PMID:19575571

  4. Insights from the Sea: Structural Biology of Marine Polyketide Synthases

    PubMed Central

    Akey, David L.; Gehret, Jennifer J.; Khare, Dheeraj; Smith, Janet L.

    2013-01-01

    The world’s oceans are a rich source of natural products with extremely interesting chemistry. Biosynthetic pathways have been worked out for a few, and the story is being enriched with crystal structures of interesting pathway enzymes. By far, the greatest number of structural insights from marine biosynthetic pathways has originated with studies of curacin A, a poster child for interesting marine chemistry with its cyclopropane and thiazoline rings, internal cis double bond, and terminal alkene. Using the curacin A pathway as a model, structural details are now available for a novel loading enzyme with remarkable dual decarboxylase and acetyltransferase activities, an Fe2+/α-ketoglutarate-dependent halogenase that dictates substrate binding order through conformational changes, a decarboxylase that establishes regiochemistry for cyclopropane formation, and a thioesterase with specificity for β-sulfated substrates that lead to terminal alkene offloading. The four curacin A pathway dehydratases reveal an intrinsic flexibility that may accommodate bulky or stiff polyketide intermediates. In the salinosporamide A pathway, active site volume determines the halide specificity of a halogenase that catalyzes for the synthesis of a halogenated building block. Structures of a number of putative polyketide cyclases may help in understanding reaction mechanisms and substrate specificities although their substrates are presently unknown. PMID:22498975

  5. Structural insights into SAM domain-mediated tankyrase oligomerization.

    PubMed

    DaRosa, Paul A; Ovchinnikov, Sergey; Xu, Wenqing; Klevit, Rachel E

    2016-09-01

    Tankyrase 1 (TNKS1; a.k.a. ARTD5) and tankyrase 2 (TNKS2; a.k.a ARTD6) are highly homologous poly(ADP-ribose) polymerases (PARPs) that function in a wide variety of cellular processes including Wnt signaling, Src signaling, Akt signaling, Glut4 vesicle translocation, telomere length regulation, and centriole and spindle pole maturation. Tankyrase proteins include a sterile alpha motif (SAM) domain that undergoes oligomerization in vitro and in vivo. However, the SAM domains of TNKS1 and TNKS2 have not been structurally characterized and the mode of oligomerization is not yet defined. Here we model the SAM domain-mediated oligomerization of tankyrase. The structural model, supported by mutagenesis and NMR analysis, demonstrates a helical, homotypic head-to-tail polymer that facilitates TNKS self-association. Furthermore, we show that TNKS1 and TNKS2 can form (TNKS1 SAM-TNKS2 SAM) hetero-oligomeric structures mediated by their SAM domains. Though wild-type tankyrase proteins have very low solubility, model-based mutations of the SAM oligomerization interface residues allowed us to obtain soluble TNKS proteins. These structural insights will be invaluable for the functional and biophysical characterization of TNKS1/2, including the role of TNKS oligomerization in protein poly(ADP-ribosyl)ation (PARylation) and PARylation-dependent ubiquitylation. PMID:27328430

  6. Insights from the sea: structural biology of marine polyketide synthases.

    PubMed

    Akey, David L; Gehret, Jennifer J; Khare, Dheeraj; Smith, Janet L

    2012-10-01

    The world's oceans are a rich source of natural products with extremely interesting chemistry. Biosynthetic pathways have been worked out for a few, and the story is being enriched with crystal structures of interesting pathway enzymes. By far, the greatest number of structural insights from marine biosynthetic pathways has originated with studies of curacin A, a poster child for interesting marine chemistry with its cyclopropane and thiazoline rings, internal cis double bond, and terminal alkene. Using the curacin A pathway as a model, structural details are now available for a novel loading enzyme with remarkable dual decarboxylase and acetyltransferase activities, an Fe(2+)/α-ketoglutarate-dependent halogenase that dictates substrate binding order through conformational changes, a decarboxylase that establishes regiochemistry for cyclopropane formation, and a thioesterase with specificity for β-sulfated substrates that lead to terminal alkene offloading. The four curacin A pathway dehydratases reveal an intrinsic flexibility that may accommodate bulky or stiff polyketide intermediates. In the salinosporamide A pathway, active site volume determines the halide specificity of a halogenase that catalyzes for the synthesis of a halogenated building block. Structures of a number of putative polyketide cyclases may help in understanding reaction mechanisms and substrate specificities although their substrates are presently unknown. PMID:22498975

  7. Structure Prediction: New Insights into Decrypting Long Noncoding RNAs

    PubMed Central

    Yan, Kun; Arfat, Yasir; Li, Dijie; Zhao, Fan; Chen, Zhihao; Yin, Chong; Sun, Yulong; Hu, Lifang; Yang, Tuanmin; Qian, Airong

    2016-01-01

    Long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs), which form a diverse class of RNAs, remain the least understood type of noncoding RNAs in terms of their nature and identification. Emerging evidence has revealed that a small number of newly discovered lncRNAs perform important and complex biological functions such as dosage compensation, chromatin regulation, genomic imprinting, and nuclear organization. However, understanding the wide range of functions of lncRNAs related to various processes of cellular networks remains a great experimental challenge. Structural versatility is critical for RNAs to perform various functions and provides new insights into probing the functions of lncRNAs. In recent years, the computational method of RNA structure prediction has been developed to analyze the structure of lncRNAs. This novel methodology has provided basic but indispensable information for the rapid, large-scale and in-depth research of lncRNAs. This review focuses on mainstream RNA structure prediction methods at the secondary and tertiary levels to offer an additional approach to investigating the functions of lncRNAs. PMID:26805815

  8. Structural Insights into Reelin Function: Present and Future

    PubMed Central

    Ranaivoson, Fanomezana M.; von Daake, Sventja; Comoletti, Davide

    2016-01-01

    Reelin is a neuronal glycoprotein secreted by the Cajal-Retzius cells in marginal regions of the cerebral cortex and the hippocampus where it plays important roles in the control of neuronal migration and the formation of cellular layers during brain development. This 3461 residue-long protein is composed of a signal peptide, an F-spondin-like domain, eight Reelin repeats (RR1–8), and a positively charged sequence at the C-terminus. Biochemical data indicate that the central region of Reelin binds to the low-density lipoprotein receptors apolipoprotein E receptor 2 (ApoER2) and the very-low-density lipoprotein receptor (VLDLR), leading to the phosphorylation of the intracellular adaptor protein Dab1. After secretion, Reelin is rapidly degraded in three major fragments, but the functional significance of this degradation is poorly understood. Probably due to its large mass and the complexity of its architecture, the high-resolution, three-dimensional structure of Reelin has never been determined. However, the crystal structures of some of the RRs have been solved, providing important insights into their fold and the interaction with the ApoER2 receptor. This review discusses the current findings on the structure of Reelin and its binding to the ApoER2 and VLDLR receptors, and we discuss some areas where proteomics and structural biology can help understanding Reelin function in brain development and human health. PMID:27303268

  9. Vertebrate Membrane Proteins: Structure, Function, and Insights from Biophysical Approaches

    PubMed Central

    MÜLLER, DANIEL J.; WU, NAN; PALCZEWSKI, KRZYSZTOF

    2008-01-01

    Membrane proteins are key targets for pharmacological intervention because they are vital for cellular function. Here, we analyze recent progress made in the understanding of the structure and function of membrane proteins with a focus on rhodopsin and development of atomic force microscopy techniques to study biological membranes. Membrane proteins are compartmentalized to carry out extra- and intracellular processes. Biological membranes are densely populated with membrane proteins that occupy approximately 50% of their volume. In most cases membranes contain lipid rafts, protein patches, or paracrystalline formations that lack the higher-order symmetry that would allow them to be characterized by diffraction methods. Despite many technical difficulties, several crystal structures of membrane proteins that illustrate their internal structural organization have been determined. Moreover, high-resolution atomic force microscopy, near-field scanning optical microscopy, and other lower resolution techniques have been used to investigate these structures. Single-molecule force spectroscopy tracks interactions that stabilize membrane proteins and those that switch their functional state; this spectroscopy can be applied to locate a ligand-binding site. Recent development of this technique also reveals the energy landscape of a membrane protein, defining its folding, reaction pathways, and kinetics. Future development and application of novel approaches during the coming years should provide even greater insights to the understanding of biological membrane organization and function. PMID:18321962

  10. Structural insights into transcription initiation by RNA polymerase II

    PubMed Central

    Grünberg, Sebastian; Hahn, Steven

    2013-01-01

    Transcriptional regulation is one of the most important steps in control of cell identity, growth, differentiation and development. Many signaling pathways controlling these processes ultimately target the core transcription machinery that, for protein coding genes, consists of RNA polymerase II (Pol II) and the general transcription factors (GTFs). New studies on the structure and mechanism of the core assembly and how it interfaces with promoter DNA and coactivator complexes have given tremendous insight into early steps in the initiation process, genome-wide binding, and mechanisms conserved for all nuclear and archaeal Pols. Here we review recent developments in dissecting the architecture of the Pol II core machinery with a focus on early and regulated steps in transcription initiation. PMID:24120742

  11. Magnetic apatite for structural insights on the plasma membrane

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stanca, Sarmiza E.; Müller, Robert; Dellith, Jan; Nietzsche, Sandor; Stöckel, Stephan; Biskup, Christoph; Deckert, Volker; Krafft, Christoph; Popp, Jürgen; Fritzsche, Wolfgang

    2015-01-01

    The iron oxide-hydroxyapatite (FeOxHA) nanoparticles reported here differ from those reported before by their advantage of homogeneity and simple preparation; moreover, the presence of carboxymethyldextran (CMD), together with hydroxyapatite (HA), allows access to the cellular membrane, which makes our magnetic apatite unique. These nanoparticles combine magnetic behavior, Raman label ability and the property of interaction with the cellular membrane; they therefore represent an interesting material for structural differentiation of the cell membrane. It was observed by Raman spectroscopy, scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and fluorescence microscopy that FeOxHA adheres to the plasma membrane and does not penetrate the membrane. These insights make the nanoparticles a promising material for magnetic cell sorting, e.g. in microfluidic device applications.

  12. Quantitative Structural Insight into Human Variegate Porphyria Disease*

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Baifan; Wen, Xin; Qin, Xiaohong; Wang, Zhifang; Tan, Ying; Shen, Yuequan; Xi, Zhen

    2013-01-01

    Defects in the human protoporphyrinogen oxidase (hPPO) gene, resulting in ∼50% decreased activity of hPPO, is responsible for the dominantly inherited disorder variegate porphyria (VP). To understand the molecular mechanism of VP, we employed the site-directed mutagenesis, biochemical assays, structural biology, and molecular dynamics simulation studies to investigate VP-causing hPPO mutants. We report here the crystal structures of R59Q and R59G mutants in complex with acifluorfen at a resolution of 2.6 and 2.8 Å. The r.m.s.d. of the Cα atoms of the active site structure of R59G and R59Q with respect to the wild-type was 0.20 and 0.15 Å, respectively. However, these highly similar static crystal structures of mutants with the wild-type could not quantitatively explain the observed large differences in their enzymatic activity. To understand how the hPPO mutations affect their catalytic activities, we combined molecular dynamics simulation and statistical analysis to quantitatively understand the molecular mechanism of VP-causing mutants. We have found that the probability of the privileged conformations of hPPO can be correlated very well with the kcat/Km of PPO (correlation coefficient, R2 > 0.9), and the catalytic activity of 44 clinically reported VP-causing mutants can be accurately predicted. These results indicated that the VP-causing mutation affect the catalytic activity of hPPO by affecting the ability of hPPO to sample the privileged conformations. The current work, together with our previous crystal structure study on the wild-type hPPO, provided the quantitative structural insight into human variegate porphyria disease. PMID:23467411

  13. Survey of neonicotinoids and fipronil in corn seeds for agriculture.

    PubMed

    Sabatino, Leonardo; Scordino, Monica; Pantò, Valentina; Chiappara, Elena; Traulo, Pasqualino; Gagliano, Giacomo

    2013-01-01

    Recently, legislative decisions withdrew or temporarily suspended the use of neonicotinoids and fipronil as seeds tanning in many countries because of their endocrine-disrupting activity imputable to the bees' toxicity. In this study, the occurrence of acetamiprid, fipronil, clothianidin, flonicamid, imidacloprid, nitenpyram, thiacloprid and thiamethoxam was detected in 66 samples of commercial treated corn seeds, collected in the Italian market in the frame of ministerial institutional quality control activity. Because of the lack of a validated analytical protocol for neonicotinoid detection in seeds, a routinely suitable liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectroscopy (LC-MS/MS) analytical method was developed and statistically validated on fortified corn seeds. Survey results demonstrated that 88% of the investigated seed samples showed the presence of residues of clothianidin, fipronil, thiamethoxam and thiacloprid, either individually or simultaneously, with values that ranged from about 0.002 to 20 mg kg(-1), which evidenced the alarming illicit use of these pesticides in seed treatments. PMID:24786619

  14. Structural Insights into the Functional Versatility of WWOX Tumor Suppressor

    PubMed Central

    Farooq, Amjad

    2014-01-01

    Recent work on WWOX tumor suppressor is beginning to shed new light on both the molecular mechanism of action of its WW domains as well as the contiguous catalytic domain. Herein, the structural basis underlying the ability of WW1 domain to bind to various physiological ligands and how the orphan WW2 tandem partner synergizes its ligand binding in the context of WW1-WW2 tandem module of WWOX is discussed. Notably, the WW domains within the WW1-WW2 tandem module physically associate so as to adopt a fixed spatial orientation relative to each other. In this manner, the association of WW2 domain with WW1 hinders ligand binding to the latter. Consequently, ligand binding to WW1 domain not only results in the displacement of WW2 lid but also disrupts the fixed orientation of WW domains in the liganded conformation. Equally importantly, structure-guided functional approach suggests that the catalytic domain of WWOX likely serves as a retinal oxidoreductase that catalyzes the reversible oxidation and reduction of all-trans-retinal. Collectively, this review provides structural insights into the functional versatility of a key signaling protein with important implications on its biology. PMID:25662954

  15. Structural insights of a hormone sensitive lipase homologue Est22

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Jing; Huo, Ying-Yi; Ji, Rui; Kuang, Siyun; Ji, Chaoneng; Xu, Xue-Wei; Li, Jixi

    2016-01-01

    Hormone sensitive lipase (HSL) catalyzes the hydrolysis of triacylglycerols into fatty acids and glycerol, thus playing key roles in energy homeostasis. However, the application of HSL serving as a pharmaceutical target and an industrial biocatalyst is largely hampered due to the lack of high-resolution structural information. Here we report biochemical properties and crystal structures of a novel HSL homologue esterase Est22 from a deep-sea metagenomic library. Est22 prefers short acyl chain esters and has a very high activity with substrate p-nitrophenyl butyrate. The crystal structures of wild type and mutated Est22 with its product p-nitrophenol are solved with resolutions ranging from 1.4 Å to 2.43 Å. The Est22 exhibits a α/β-hydrolase fold consisting with a catalytic domain and a substrate-recognizing cap domain. Residues Ser188, Asp287, and His317 comprise the catalytic triad in the catalytic domain. The p-nitrophenol molecule occupies the substrate binding pocket and forms hydrogen bonds with adjacent residues Gly108, Gly109, and Gly189. Est22 exhibits a dimeric form in solution, whereas mutants D287A and H317A change to polymeric form, which totally abolished its enzymatic activities. Our study provides insights into the catalytic mechanism of HSL family esterase and facilitates the understanding for further industrial and biotechnological applications of esterases. PMID:27328716

  16. Structural Insights on the Mycobacterium tuberculosis Proteasomal ATPase Mpa

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, T.; Li, H; Lin, G; Tang, C; Li, D; Nathan, C; Heran Darwin, K

    2009-01-01

    Proteasome-mediated protein turnover in all domains of life is an energy-dependent process that requires ATPase activity. Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) was recently shown to possess a ubiquitin-like proteasome pathway that plays an essential role in Mtb resistance to killing by products of host macrophages. Here we report our structural and biochemical investigation of Mpa, the presumptive Mtb proteasomal ATPase. We demonstrate that Mpa binds to the Mtb proteasome in the presence of ATPS, providing the physical evidence that Mpa is the proteasomal ATPase. X-ray crystallographic determination of the conserved interdomain showed a five stranded double {beta} barrel structure containing a Greek key motif. Structure and mutational analysis indicate a major role of the interdomain for Mpa hexamerization. Our mutational and functional studies further suggest that the central channel in the Mpa hexamer is involved in protein substrate translocation and degradation. These studies provide insights into how a bacterial proteasomal ATPase interacts with and facilitates protein degradation by the proteasome.

  17. Structural insights of a hormone sensitive lipase homologue Est22.

    PubMed

    Huang, Jing; Huo, Ying-Yi; Ji, Rui; Kuang, Siyun; Ji, Chaoneng; Xu, Xue-Wei; Li, Jixi

    2016-01-01

    Hormone sensitive lipase (HSL) catalyzes the hydrolysis of triacylglycerols into fatty acids and glycerol, thus playing key roles in energy homeostasis. However, the application of HSL serving as a pharmaceutical target and an industrial biocatalyst is largely hampered due to the lack of high-resolution structural information. Here we report biochemical properties and crystal structures of a novel HSL homologue esterase Est22 from a deep-sea metagenomic library. Est22 prefers short acyl chain esters and has a very high activity with substrate p-nitrophenyl butyrate. The crystal structures of wild type and mutated Est22 with its product p-nitrophenol are solved with resolutions ranging from 1.4 Å to 2.43 Å. The Est22 exhibits a α/β-hydrolase fold consisting with a catalytic domain and a substrate-recognizing cap domain. Residues Ser188, Asp287, and His317 comprise the catalytic triad in the catalytic domain. The p-nitrophenol molecule occupies the substrate binding pocket and forms hydrogen bonds with adjacent residues Gly108, Gly109, and Gly189. Est22 exhibits a dimeric form in solution, whereas mutants D287A and H317A change to polymeric form, which totally abolished its enzymatic activities. Our study provides insights into the catalytic mechanism of HSL family esterase and facilitates the understanding for further industrial and biotechnological applications of esterases. PMID:27328716

  18. Biological response of earthworm, Eisenia fetida, to five neonicotinoid insecticides.

    PubMed

    Wang, Kai; Pang, Sen; Mu, Xiyan; Qi, Suzhen; Li, Dongzhi; Cui, Feng; Wang, Chengju

    2015-08-01

    Earthworms (Eisenia fetida) are one of the most abundant terrestrial species, and play an important role in maintaining the ecological function of soil. Neonicotinoids are some of the most widely used insecticides applied to crops. Studies on the effect of neonicotinoids on E. fetida are limited. In the present work, we evaluated the effects of five neonicotinoid insecticides on reproduction, cellulase activity and the tissues of E. fetida. The results showed that, the LC50 of imidacloprid, acetamiprid, nitenpyram, clothianidin and thiacloprid was 3.05, 2.69, 4.34, 0.93 and 2.68mgkg(-1), respectively. They also could seriously affect the reproduction of E. fetida, reducing the fecundity by 84.0%, 39.5%, 54.3%, 45.7% and 39.5% at the sub-lethal concentrations of 2.0, 1.5, 0.80, 2.0 and 1.5mgkg(-1), respectively. The cellulase activity of E. fetida was most sensitive to clothianidin. Significant disruption of the epidermal and midgut tissue was observed after 14d exposure. In summary, we demonstrate that imidacloprid, acetamiprid, nitenpyram, clothianidin and thiacloprid have high toxic to earthworm, and can significantly inhibited fecundity and cellulase activity of E. fetida, and they also damage the epidermal and midgut cells of earthworm. PMID:25828917

  19. Structural Insight into HIV-1 Restriction by MxB

    PubMed Central

    Alvarez, Frances Joan D.; Summers, Brady J.; Dewdney, Tamaria G.; Aiken, Christopher; Zhang, Peijun; Engelman, Alan; Xiong, Yong

    2014-01-01

    Summary The myxovirus resistance (Mx) proteins are interferon-induced dynamin GTPases that can inhibit a variety of viruses. Recently, MxB, but not MxA, was shown to restrict HIV-1 by an unknown mechanism that likely occurs in close proximity to the host cell nucleus and involves the viral capsid. Here, we present the crystal structure of MxB and reveal determinants involved in HIV-1 restriction. MxB adopts an extended anti-parallel dimer and dimerization, but not higher-ordered oligomerization, is critical for restriction. Although MxB is structurally similar to MxA, the orientation of individual domains differs between MxA and MxB and their antiviral functions rely on separate determinants, indicating distinct mechanisms for virus inhibition. Additionally, MxB directly binds the HIV-1 capsid and this interaction depends on dimerization and the N-terminus of MxB as well as the assembled capsid lattice. These insights establish a framework for understanding the mechanism by which MxB restricts HIV-1. PMID:25312384

  20. Environmental fate of soil applied neonicotinoid insecticides in an irrigated potato agroecosystem.

    PubMed

    Huseth, Anders S; Groves, Russell L

    2014-01-01

    Since 1995, neonicotinoid insecticides have been a critical component of arthropod management in potato, Solanum tuberosum L. Recent detections of neonicotinoids in groundwater have generated questions about the sources of these contaminants and the relative contribution from commodities in U.S. agriculture. Delivery of neonicotinoids to crops typically occurs as a seed or in-furrow treatment to manage early season insect herbivores. Applied in this way, these insecticides become systemically mobile in the plant and provide control of key pest species. An outcome of this project links these soil insecticide application strategies in crop plants with neonicotinoid contamination of water leaching from the application zone. In 2011 and 2012, our objectives were to document the temporal patterns of neonicotinoid leachate below the planting furrow following common insecticide delivery methods in potato. Leaching loss of thiamethoxam from potato was measured using pan lysimeters from three at-plant treatments and one foliar application treatment. Insecticide concentration in leachate was assessed for six consecutive months using liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. Findings from this study suggest leaching of neonicotinoids from potato may be greater following crop harvest in comparison to other times during the growing season. Furthermore, this study documented recycling of neonicotinoid insecticides from contaminated groundwater back onto the crop via high capacity irrigation wells. These results document interactions between cultivated potato, different neonicotinoid delivery methods, and the potential for subsurface water contamination via leaching. PMID:24823765

  1. Environmental Fate of Soil Applied Neonicotinoid Insecticides in an Irrigated Potato Agroecosystem

    PubMed Central

    Huseth, Anders S.; Groves, Russell L.

    2014-01-01

    Since 1995, neonicotinoid insecticides have been a critical component of arthropod management in potato, Solanum tuberosum L. Recent detections of neonicotinoids in groundwater have generated questions about the sources of these contaminants and the relative contribution from commodities in U.S. agriculture. Delivery of neonicotinoids to crops typically occurs as a seed or in-furrow treatment to manage early season insect herbivores. Applied in this way, these insecticides become systemically mobile in the plant and provide control of key pest species. An outcome of this project links these soil insecticide application strategies in crop plants with neonicotinoid contamination of water leaching from the application zone. In 2011 and 2012, our objectives were to document the temporal patterns of neonicotinoid leachate below the planting furrow following common insecticide delivery methods in potato. Leaching loss of thiamethoxam from potato was measured using pan lysimeters from three at-plant treatments and one foliar application treatment. Insecticide concentration in leachate was assessed for six consecutive months using liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. Findings from this study suggest leaching of neonicotinoids from potato may be greater following crop harvest in comparison to other times during the growing season. Furthermore, this study documented recycling of neonicotinoid insecticides from contaminated groundwater back onto the crop via high capacity irrigation wells. These results document interactions between cultivated potato, different neonicotinoid delivery methods, and the potential for subsurface water contamination via leaching. PMID:24823765

  2. COMPARISON OF NEONICOTINOID INSECTICIDES WITH SILVERLEAF WHITEFLY INSECTICIDE STANDARDS FOR COTTON

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Silverleaf whitefly (SLW) insecticide efficacy research trials were conducted during the cotton seasons of 1997-2000 at the U of CA Desert Res. and Ext. Center in the Imperial Valley, CA to evaluate neonicotinoid insecticides and standard insecticides for control of SLW in cotton. Neonicotinoid inse...

  3. Determination of neonicotinoids in Estonian honey by liquid chromatography-electrospray mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Laaniste, Asko; Leito, Ivo; Rebane, Riin; Lõhmus, Rünno; Lõhmus, Ants; Punga, Fredrik; Kruve, Anneli

    2016-07-01

    The aim of the study was to provide a comprehensive overview of neonicotinoid pesticide residues in honey samples for a single country and compare the results with the import data for neonicotinoid pesticides. The levels of four neonicotinoid pesticides, namely thiamethoxam, imidacloprid, acetamiprid, and thiacloprid, were determined in 294 honey samples harvested from 2005 to 2013 from more than 200 locations in Estonia. For the analyzed honey samples, 27% contained thiacloprid, and its levels in all cases were below the maximum residue level set by the European Union. The other neonicotinoids were not detected. The proportion of thiacloprid-positive samples for different years correlates well with the data on thiacloprid imports into Estonia, indicating that honey contamination with neonicotinoids can be estimated based on the import data. PMID:27050772

  4. Impact of Chronic Neonicotinoid Exposure on Honeybee Colony Performance and Queen Supersedure

    PubMed Central

    Sandrock, Christoph; Tanadini, Matteo; Tanadini, Lorenzo G.; Fauser-Misslin, Aline; Potts, Simon G.; Neumann, Peter

    2014-01-01

    Background Honeybees provide economically and ecologically vital pollination services to crops and wild plants. During the last decade elevated colony losses have been documented in Europe and North America. Despite growing consensus on the involvement of multiple causal factors, the underlying interactions impacting on honeybee health and colony failure are not fully resolved. Parasites and pathogens are among the main candidates, but sublethal exposure to widespread agricultural pesticides may also affect bees. Methodology/Principal Findings To investigate effects of sublethal dietary neonicotinoid exposure on honeybee colony performance, a fully crossed experimental design was implemented using 24 colonies, including sister-queens from two different strains, and experimental in-hive pollen feeding with or without environmentally relevant concentrations of thiamethoxam and clothianidin. Honeybee colonies chronically exposed to both neonicotinoids over two brood cycles exhibited decreased performance in the short-term resulting in declining numbers of adult bees (−28%) and brood (−13%), as well as a reduction in honey production (−29%) and pollen collections (−19%), but colonies recovered in the medium-term and overwintered successfully. However, significantly decelerated growth of neonicotinoid-exposed colonies during the following spring was associated with queen failure, revealing previously undocumented long-term impacts of neonicotinoids: queen supersedure was observed for 60% of the neonicotinoid-exposed colonies within a one year period, but not for control colonies. Linked to this, neonicotinoid exposure was significantly associated with a reduced propensity to swarm during the next spring. Both short-term and long-term effects of neonicotinoids on colony performance were significantly influenced by the honeybees’ genetic background. Conclusions/Significance Sublethal neonicotinoid exposure did not provoke increased winter losses. Yet

  5. Insights.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bogner, Donna, Ed.

    1988-01-01

    Describes two methods to teach radioactive decay to secondary students with wide ranging abilities. Activities are designed to follow classroom discussions of atomic structure, transmutation, half life, and nuclear decay. Includes "The Tasmanian Empire: A Radioactive Dating Activity" and an exercise to teach concepts of half life without using…

  6. Increased Acetylcholinesterase Expression in Bumble Bees During Neonicotinoid-Coated Corn Sowing.

    PubMed

    Samson-Robert, Olivier; Labrie, Geneviève; Mercier, Pierre-Luc; Chagnon, Madeleine; Derome, Nicolas; Fournier, Valérie

    2015-01-01

    While honey bee exposure to systemic insecticides has received much attention, impacts on wild pollinators have not been as widely studied. Neonicotinoids have been shown to increase acetylcholinesterase (AChE) activity in honey bees at sublethal doses. High AChE levels may therefore act as a biomarker of exposure to neonicotinoids. This two-year study focused on establishing whether bumble bees living and foraging in agricultural areas using neonicotinoid crop protection show early biochemical signs of intoxication. Bumble bee colonies (Bombus impatiens) were placed in two different agricultural cropping areas: 1) control (≥ 3 km from fields planted with neonicotinoid-treated seeds) or 2) exposed (within 500 m of fields planted with neonicotinoid-treated seeds), and maintained for the duration of corn sowing. As determined by Real Time qPCR, AChE mRNA expression was initially significantly higher in bumble bees from exposed sites, then decreased throughout the planting season to reach a similar endpoint to that of bumble bees from control sites. These findings suggest that exposure to neonicotinoid seed coating particles during the planting season can alter bumble bee neuronal activity. To our knowledge, this is the first study to report in situ that bumble bees living in agricultural areas exhibit signs of neonicotinoid intoxication. PMID:26223214

  7. First national-scale reconnaissance of neonicotinoid insecticides in streams across the USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hladik, Michelle L.; Kolpin, Dana W.

    2015-01-01

     To better understand the fate and transport of neonicotinoid insecticides, water samples were collected from streams across the United States. In a nationwide study, at least one neonicotinoid was detected in 53 % of the samples collected, with imidacloprid detected most frequently (37 %), followed by clothianidin (24 %), thiamethoxam (21 %), dinotefuran (13 %), acetamiprid (3 %) and thiacloprid (0 %). Clothianidin and thiamethoxam concentrations were positively related to the percentage of the land use in cultivated crop production and imidacloprid concentrations were positively related to the percentage of urban area within the basin. Additional sampling was also conducted in targeted research areas to complement these national-scale results, including determining: (1) neonicotinoid concentrations during elevated flow conditions in an intensely agricultural region; (2) temporal patterns of neonicotinoids in heavily urbanised basins; (3) neonicotinoid concentrations in agricultural basins in a nationally important ecosystem; and (4) in-stream transport of neonicotinoids near a wastewater treatment plant. Across all study areas, at least one neonicotinoid was detected in 63 % of the 48 streams sampled.

  8. Ecological and Landscape Drivers of Neonicotinoid Insecticide Detections and Concentrations in Canada's Prairie Wetlands.

    PubMed

    Main, Anson R; Michel, Nicole L; Headley, John V; Peru, Kerry M; Morrissey, Christy A

    2015-07-21

    Neonicotinoids are commonly used seed treatments on Canada's major prairie crops. Transported via surface and subsurface runoff into wetlands, their ultimate aquatic fate remains largely unknown. Biotic and abiotic wetland characteristics likely affect neonicotinoid presence and environmental persistence, but concentrations vary widely between wetlands that appear ecologically (e.g., plant composition) and physically (e.g., depth) similar for reasons that remain unclear. We conducted intensive surveys of 238 wetlands, and documented 59 wetland (e.g., dominant plant species) and landscape (e.g., surrounding crop) characteristics as part of a novel rapid wetland assessment system. We used boosted regression tree (BRT) analysis to predict both probability of neonicotinoid analytical detection and concentration. BRT models effectively predicted the deviance in neonicotinoid detection (62.4%) and concentration (74.7%) from 21 and 23 variables, respectively. Detection was best explained by shallow marsh plant species identity (34.8%) and surrounding crop (13.9%). Neonicotinoid concentration was best explained by shallow marsh plant species identity (14.9%) and wetland depth (14.2%). Our research revealed that plant composition is a key indicator and/or driver of neonicotinoid presence and concentration in Prairie wetlands. We recommend wetland buffers consisting of diverse native vegetation be retained or restored to minimize neonicotinoid transport and retention in wetlands, thereby limiting their potential effects on wetland-dependent organisms. PMID:26098364

  9. Increased Acetylcholinesterase Expression in Bumble Bees During Neonicotinoid-Coated Corn Sowing

    PubMed Central

    Samson-Robert, Olivier; Labrie, Geneviève; Mercier, Pierre-Luc; Chagnon, Madeleine; Derome, Nicolas; Fournier, Valérie

    2015-01-01

    While honey bee exposure to systemic insecticides has received much attention, impacts on wild pollinators have not been as widely studied. Neonicotinoids have been shown to increase acetylcholinesterase (AChE) activity in honey bees at sublethal doses. High AChE levels may therefore act as a biomarker of exposure to neonicotinoids. This two-year study focused on establishing whether bumble bees living and foraging in agricultural areas using neonicotinoid crop protection show early biochemical signs of intoxication. Bumble bee colonies (Bombus impatiens) were placed in two different agricultural cropping areas: 1) control (≥3 km from fields planted with neonicotinoid-treated seeds) or 2) exposed (within 500 m of fields planted with neonicotinoid-treated seeds), and maintained for the duration of corn sowing. As determined by Real Time qPCR, AChE mRNA expression was initially significantly higher in bumble bees from exposed sites, then decreased throughout the planting season to reach a similar endpoint to that of bumble bees from control sites. These findings suggest that exposure to neonicotinoid seed coating particles during the planting season can alter bumble bee neuronal activity. To our knowledge, this is the first study to report in situ that bumble bees living in agricultural areas exhibit signs of neonicotinoid intoxication. PMID:26223214

  10. A critical review of neonicotinoid insecticides for developmental neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Sheets, Larry P; Li, Abby A; Minnema, Daniel J; Collier, Richard H; Creek, Moire R; Peffer, Richard C

    2016-02-01

    A comprehensive review of published and previously unpublished studies was performed to evaluate the neonicotinoid insecticides for evidence of developmental neurotoxicity (DNT). These insecticides have favorable safety profiles, due to their preferential affinity for nicotinic receptor (nAChR) subtypes in insects, poor penetration of the mammalian blood-brain barrier, and low application rates. Nevertheless, examination of this issue is warranted, due to their insecticidal mode of action and potential exposure with agricultural and residential uses. This review identified in vitro, in vivo, and epidemiology studies in the literature and studies performed in rats in accordance with GLP standards and EPA guidelines with imidacloprid, acetamiprid, thiacloprid, clothianidin, thiamethoxam, and dinotefuran, which are all the neonicotinoids currently registered in major markets. For the guideline-based studies, treatment was administered via the diet or gavage to primiparous female rats at three dose levels, plus a vehicle control (≥20/dose level), from gestation day 0 or 6 to lactation day 21. F1 males and females were evaluated using measures of motor activity, acoustic startle response, cognition, brain morphometry, and neuropathology. The principal effects in F1 animals were associated with decreased body weight (delayed sexual maturation, decreased brain weight, and morphometric measurements) and acute toxicity (decreased activity during exposure) at high doses, without neuropathology or impaired cognition. No common effects were identified among the neonicotinoids that were consistent with DNT or the neurodevelopmental effects associated with nicotine. Findings at high doses were associated with evidence of systemic toxicity, which indicates that these insecticides do not selectively affect the developing nervous system. PMID:26513508

  11. A critical review of neonicotinoid insecticides for developmental neurotoxicity

    PubMed Central

    Sheets, Larry P.; Li, Abby A.; Minnema, Daniel J.; Collier, Richard H.; Creek, Moire R.; Peffer, Richard C.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract A comprehensive review of published and previously unpublished studies was performed to evaluate the neonicotinoid insecticides for evidence of developmental neurotoxicity (DNT). These insecticides have favorable safety profiles, due to their preferential affinity for nicotinic receptor (nAChR) subtypes in insects, poor penetration of the mammalian blood–brain barrier, and low application rates. Nevertheless, examination of this issue is warranted, due to their insecticidal mode of action and potential exposure with agricultural and residential uses. This review identified in vitro, in vivo, and epidemiology studies in the literature and studies performed in rats in accordance with GLP standards and EPA guidelines with imidacloprid, acetamiprid, thiacloprid, clothianidin, thiamethoxam, and dinotefuran, which are all the neonicotinoids currently registered in major markets. For the guideline-based studies, treatment was administered via the diet or gavage to primiparous female rats at three dose levels, plus a vehicle control (≥20/dose level), from gestation day 0 or 6 to lactation day 21. F1 males and females were evaluated using measures of motor activity, acoustic startle response, cognition, brain morphometry, and neuropathology. The principal effects in F1 animals were associated with decreased body weight (delayed sexual maturation, decreased brain weight, and morphometric measurements) and acute toxicity (decreased activity during exposure) at high doses, without neuropathology or impaired cognition. No common effects were identified among the neonicotinoids that were consistent with DNT or the neurodevelopmental effects associated with nicotine. Findings at high doses were associated with evidence of systemic toxicity, which indicates that these insecticides do not selectively affect the developing nervous system. PMID:26513508

  12. Seismological Insights into the Structure of the Lesser Antilles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schlaphorst, D.; Kendall, J.; Bastow, I. D.; Baptie, B.

    2012-12-01

    Due to an overall eastwards drift of the Caribbean plate of around 2cm/year relative to the Atlantic plate, the type of the subduction along the eastern part of the Caribbean changes. Compared to the simple subduction of the Atlantic plate in the east, the northern plate boundary zone is far more complex, predominantly characterised by a left-lateral east-west strike-slip motion that includes an oblique convergence of the Bahamas carbonate banks and a pull apart basin in the Mona Passage, the sea gate between Hispaniola and Puerto Rico. The island of Hispaniola is decoupled from the Caribbean plate, which leads to a second subduction zone south of Hispaniola where the Caribbean plate subducts beneath the Hispaniola micro plate. Strictly speaking, the arc only extends to the east of the island of Puerto Rico but since most of the northern Caribbean plate boundary zone is directly linked to it the results become more directly comparable. Fed by the Orinoco River the southern part of the Lesser Antilles is a sediment-rich subduction zone, which becomes sediment-poor towards the north as the sediments get blocked by several banks, including the accretionary prism containing the island of Barbados. Here we investigate the crustal and mantle structure variation along the Antilles Arc using measurements of seismic anisotropy and receiver functions. We use data from three component broadband stations that are located from the southern end of the arc to Hispaniola in the north. Seismic anisotropy refers to directional variations in wave speeds and their polarisations. The observation of two independently propagating shear waves (splitting) is the least ambiguous indication of anisotropy. Such observations can be used to constrain mantle flow beneath subduction regions, offering insights into slab dynamics. We generally observed trench parallel orientations around the plate boundary. However, we see significant local deviations in the inferred flow pattern, for example, in

  13. Widespread use and frequent detection of neonicotinoid insecticides in wetlands of Canada's Prairie Pothole Region.

    PubMed

    Main, Anson R; Headley, John V; Peru, Kerry M; Michel, Nicole L; Cessna, Allan J; Morrissey, Christy A

    2014-01-01

    Neonicotinoids currently dominate the insecticide market as seed treatments on Canada's major Prairie crops (e.g., canola). The potential impact to ecologically significant wetlands in this dominantly agro-environment has largely been overlooked while the distribution of use, incidence and level of contamination remains unreported. We modelled the spatial distribution of neonicotinoid use across the three Prairie Provinces in combination with temporal assessments of water and sediment concentrations in wetlands to measure four active ingredients (clothianidin, thiamethoxam, imidacloprid and acetamiprid). From 2009 to 2012, neonicotinoid use was increasing; by 2012, applications covered an estimated ∼11 million hectares (44% of Prairie cropland) with >216,000 kg of active ingredients. Thiamethoxam, followed by clothianidin, were the dominant seed treatments by mass and area. Areas of high neonicotinoid use were identified as high density canola or soybean production. Water sampled four times from 136 wetlands (spring, summer, fall 2012 and spring 2013) across four rural municipalities in Saskatchewan similarly revealed clothianidin and thiamethoxam in the majority of samples. In spring 2012 prior to seeding, 36% of wetlands contained at least one neonicotinoid. Detections increased to 62% in summer 2012, declined to 16% in fall, and increased to 91% the following spring 2013 after ice-off. Peak concentrations were recorded during summer 2012 for both thiamethoxam (range: neonicotinoid concentrations (which did not exceed 20 ng/L). Wetlands situated in barley, canola and oat fields consistently contained higher mean concentrations of neonicotinoids than in grasslands, but no individual crop singularly influenced overall detections or concentrations. Distribution maps indicate neonicotinoid use is increasing and becoming

  14. Widespread Use and Frequent Detection of Neonicotinoid Insecticides in Wetlands of Canada's Prairie Pothole Region

    PubMed Central

    Main, Anson R.; Headley, John V.; Peru, Kerry M.; Michel, Nicole L.; Cessna, Allan J.; Morrissey, Christy A.

    2014-01-01

    Neonicotinoids currently dominate the insecticide market as seed treatments on Canada's major Prairie crops (e.g., canola). The potential impact to ecologically significant wetlands in this dominantly agro-environment has largely been overlooked while the distribution of use, incidence and level of contamination remains unreported. We modelled the spatial distribution of neonicotinoid use across the three Prairie Provinces in combination with temporal assessments of water and sediment concentrations in wetlands to measure four active ingredients (clothianidin, thiamethoxam, imidacloprid and acetamiprid). From 2009 to 2012, neonicotinoid use was increasing; by 2012, applications covered an estimated ∼11 million hectares (44% of Prairie cropland) with >216,000 kg of active ingredients. Thiamethoxam, followed by clothianidin, were the dominant seed treatments by mass and area. Areas of high neonicotinoid use were identified as high density canola or soybean production. Water sampled four times from 136 wetlands (spring, summer, fall 2012 and spring 2013) across four rural municipalities in Saskatchewan similarly revealed clothianidin and thiamethoxam in the majority of samples. In spring 2012 prior to seeding, 36% of wetlands contained at least one neonicotinoid. Detections increased to 62% in summer 2012, declined to 16% in fall, and increased to 91% the following spring 2013 after ice-off. Peak concentrations were recorded during summer 2012 for both thiamethoxam (range: neonicotinoid concentrations (which did not exceed 20 ng/L). Wetlands situated in barley, canola and oat fields consistently contained higher mean concentrations of neonicotinoids than in grasslands, but no individual crop singularly influenced overall detections or concentrations. Distribution maps indicate neonicotinoid use is increasing and

  15. Widespread occurrence of neonicotinoid insecticides in streams in a high corn and soybean producing region, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hladik, Michelle L.; Kolpin, Dana W.; Kuivila, Kathryn M.

    2014-01-01

    Neonicotinoid insecticides are of environmental concern, but little is known about their occurrence in surface water. An area of intense corn and soybean production in the Midwestern United States was chosen to study this issue because of the high agricultural use of neonicotinoids via both seed treatments and other forms of application. Water samples were collected from nine stream sites during the 2013 growing season. The results for the 79 water samples documented similar patterns among sites for both frequency of detection and concentration (maximum:median) with clothianidin (75%, 257 ng/L:8.2 ng/L) > thiamethoxam (47%, 185 ng/L: imidacloprid (23%, 42.7 ng/L: <2 ng/L). Neonicotinoids were detected at all nine sites sampled even though the basin areas spanned four orders of magnitude. Temporal patterns in concentrations reveal pulses of neonicotinoids associated with rainfall events during crop planting, suggesting seed treatments as their likely source.

  16. The neonicotinoid clothianidin interferes with navigation of the solitary bee Osmia cornuta in a laboratory test.

    PubMed

    Jin, Nanxiang; Klein, Simon; Leimig, Fabian; Bischoff, Gabriela; Menzel, Randolf

    2015-09-01

    Pollinating insects provide a vital ecosystem service to crops and wild plants. Exposure to low doses of neonicotinoid insecticides has sub-lethal effects on social pollinators such as bumblebees and honeybees, disturbing their navigation and interfering with their development. Solitary Hymenoptera are also very important ecosystem service providers, but the sub-lethal effects of neonicotinoids have not yet been studied well in those animals. We analyzed the ability of walking Osmia to remember a feeding place in a small environment and found that Osmia remembers the feeding place well after 4 days of training. Uptake of field-realistic amounts of the neonicotinoid clothianidin (0.76 ng per bee) altered the animals' sensory responses to the visual environment and interfered with the retrieval of navigational memory. We conclude that the neonicotinoid clothianidin compromises visual guidance and the use of navigational memory in the solitary bee Osmia cornuta. PMID:26206356

  17. Potential application of immunoassays for simple, rapid and quantitative detections of phytoavailable neonicotinoid insecticides in cropland soils.

    PubMed

    Watanabe, Eiki; Seike, Nobuyasu; Motoki, Yutaka; Inao, Keiya; Otani, Takashi

    2016-10-01

    This study evaluated the applicability of commercially available kit-based enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) to simple, quick, and quantitative detection for three water-extractable (phytoavailable) neonicotinoid insecticides: dinotefuran, clothianidin, and imidacloprid in soils. ELISA showed excellent analytical sensitivity for determination, but with cross-reaction to structurally related neonicotinoid analogues, which might produce false positives. To analyze insecticides in soil samples of diverse physicochemical properties, they were extracted with water. The aqueous soil extracts were assayed directly with ELISA. No matrix interference was observed without additional dilution with water. Recovery experiments for the insecticides from aqueous soil extracts spiked at 2-10 ng/mL showed good accuracy (72-126%) and precision (<16%). Kit-based ELISAs were used to estimate soil-water distribution coefficients (Kd). Values estimated using this method showed positive correlation between organic carbon contents in soil and those for evaluated insecticides. Results indicate that the evaluated kit-based ELISA has applicability for simple, quick, and reliable detection of phytoavailable insecticides in soils and for estimating Kd values in soil. PMID:27344017

  18. Underestimating neonicotinoid exposure: how extent and magnitude may be affected by land-use change.

    PubMed

    Zimmermann, Jesko; Stout, Jane C

    2016-04-01

    Potential detrimental impacts of neonicotinoids on non-target organisms, especially bees, have been subject to a wide debate and the subsequent ban of three neonicotinoids by the EU. While recent research has fortified concerns regarding the effects of neonicotinoids on ecosystem service (ES) providers, potential impacts have been considered negligible in systems with a relatively small proportion of arable land and thus lower the use of these pesticides. In this paper we argue that there is not sufficient information to assess magnitude and extent of neonicotinoid application, as well as potential non-target impacts on ES providers in grass-dominated systems with frequent land-use change. Using Ireland as an example, we show that the highly dynamic agricultural landscape, in conjunction with estimated persistence times of neonicotinoids in soils, may lead to a much larger area (18.6 ± 0.6% of the Irish agricultural area) exposed to these pesticides than initially assumed. Furthermore we present a number of important gaps in current research regarding the impacts of neonicotinoids on ES providers in such systems. PMID:26856865

  19. Impact of neonicotinoid insecticides on natural enemies in greenhouse and interiorscape environments.

    PubMed

    Cloyd, Raymond A; Bethke, James A

    2011-01-01

    The neonicotinoid insecticides imidacloprid, acetamiprid, dinotefuran, thiamethoxam and clothianidin are commonly used in greenhouses and/or interiorscapes (plant interiorscapes and conservatories) to manage a wide range of plant-feeding insects such as aphids, mealybugs and whiteflies. However, these systemic insecticides may also be harmful to natural enemies, including predators and parasitoids. Predatory insects and mites may be adversely affected by neonicotinoid systemic insecticides when they: (1) feed on pollen, nectar or plant tissue contaminated with the active ingredient; (2) consume the active ingredient of neonicotinoid insecticides while ingesting plant fluids; (3) feed on hosts (prey) that have consumed leaves contaminated with the active ingredient. Parasitoids may be affected negatively by neonicotinoid insecticides because foliar, drench or granular applications may decrease host population levels so that there are not enough hosts to attack and thus sustain parasitoid populations. Furthermore, host quality may be unacceptable for egg laying by parasitoid females. In addition, female parasitoids that host feed may inadvertently ingest a lethal concentration of the active ingredient or a sublethal dose that inhibits foraging or egg laying. There are, however, issues that require further consideration, such as: the types of plant and flower that accumulate active ingredients, and the concentrations in which they are accumulated; the influence of flower age on the level of exposure of natural enemies to the active ingredient; the effect of neonicotinoid metabolites produced within the plant. As such, the application of neonicotinoid insecticides in conjunction with natural enemies in protected culture and interiorscape environments needs further investigation. PMID:20721973

  20. Evidence for pollinator cost and farming benefits of neonicotinoid seed coatings on oilseed rape

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Budge, G. E.; Garthwaite, D.; Crowe, A.; Boatman, N. D.; Delaplane, K. S.; Brown, M. A.; Thygesen, H. H.; Pietravalle, S.

    2015-08-01

    Chronic exposure to neonicotinoid insecticides has been linked to reduced survival of pollinating insects at both the individual and colony level, but so far only experimentally. Analyses of large-scale datasets to investigate the real-world links between the use of neonicotinoids and pollinator mortality are lacking. Moreover, the impacts of neonicotinoid seed coatings in reducing subsequent applications of foliar insecticide sprays and increasing crop yield are not known, despite the supposed benefits of this practice driving widespread use. Here, we combine large-scale pesticide usage and yield observations from oilseed rape with those detailing honey bee colony losses over an 11 year period, and reveal a correlation between honey bee colony losses and national-scale imidacloprid (a neonicotinoid) usage patterns across England and Wales. We also provide the first evidence that farmers who use neonicotinoid seed coatings reduce the number of subsequent applications of foliar insecticide sprays and may derive an economic return. Our results inform the societal discussion on the pollinator costs and farming benefits of prophylactic neonicotinoid usage on a mass flowering crop.

  1. Evidence for pollinator cost and farming benefits of neonicotinoid seed coatings on oilseed rape.

    PubMed

    Budge, G E; Garthwaite, D; Crowe, A; Boatman, N D; Delaplane, K S; Brown, M A; Thygesen, H H; Pietravalle, S

    2015-01-01

    Chronic exposure to neonicotinoid insecticides has been linked to reduced survival of pollinating insects at both the individual and colony level, but so far only experimentally. Analyses of large-scale datasets to investigate the real-world links between the use of neonicotinoids and pollinator mortality are lacking. Moreover, the impacts of neonicotinoid seed coatings in reducing subsequent applications of foliar insecticide sprays and increasing crop yield are not known, despite the supposed benefits of this practice driving widespread use. Here, we combine large-scale pesticide usage and yield observations from oilseed rape with those detailing honey bee colony losses over an 11 year period, and reveal a correlation between honey bee colony losses and national-scale imidacloprid (a neonicotinoid) usage patterns across England and Wales. We also provide the first evidence that farmers who use neonicotinoid seed coatings reduce the number of subsequent applications of foliar insecticide sprays and may derive an economic return. Our results inform the societal discussion on the pollinator costs and farming benefits of prophylactic neonicotinoid usage on a mass flowering crop. PMID:26270806

  2. Evidence for pollinator cost and farming benefits of neonicotinoid seed coatings on oilseed rape

    PubMed Central

    Budge, G. E.; Garthwaite, D.; Crowe, A.; Boatman, N. D.; Delaplane, K. S.; Brown, M. A.; Thygesen, H. H.; Pietravalle, S.

    2015-01-01

    Chronic exposure to neonicotinoid insecticides has been linked to reduced survival of pollinating insects at both the individual and colony level, but so far only experimentally. Analyses of large-scale datasets to investigate the real-world links between the use of neonicotinoids and pollinator mortality are lacking. Moreover, the impacts of neonicotinoid seed coatings in reducing subsequent applications of foliar insecticide sprays and increasing crop yield are not known, despite the supposed benefits of this practice driving widespread use. Here, we combine large-scale pesticide usage and yield observations from oilseed rape with those detailing honey bee colony losses over an 11 year period, and reveal a correlation between honey bee colony losses and national-scale imidacloprid (a neonicotinoid) usage patterns across England and Wales. We also provide the first evidence that farmers who use neonicotinoid seed coatings reduce the number of subsequent applications of foliar insecticide sprays and may derive an economic return. Our results inform the societal discussion on the pollinator costs and farming benefits of prophylactic neonicotinoid usage on a mass flowering crop. PMID:26270806

  3. Insights into Chromatin Structure and Dynamics in Plants

    PubMed Central

    Rosa, Stefanie; Shaw, Peter

    2013-01-01

    The packaging of chromatin into the nucleus of a eukaryotic cell requires an extraordinary degree of compaction and physical organization. In recent years, it has been shown that this organization is dynamically orchestrated to regulate responses to exogenous stimuli as well as to guide complex cell-type-specific developmental programs. Gene expression is regulated by the compartmentalization of functional domains within the nucleus, by distinct nucleosome compositions accomplished via differential modifications on the histone tails and through the replacement of core histones by histone variants. In this review, we focus on these aspects of chromatin organization and discuss novel approaches such as live cell imaging and photobleaching as important tools likely to give significant insights into our understanding of the very dynamic nature of chromatin and chromatin regulatory processes. We highlight the contribution plant studies have made in this area showing the potential advantages of plants as models in understanding this fundamental aspect of biology. PMID:24833230

  4. Structure network analysis to gain insights into GPCR function.

    PubMed

    Fanelli, Francesca; Felline, Angelo; Raimondi, Francesco; Seeber, Michele

    2016-04-15

    G protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) are allosteric proteins whose functioning fundamentals are the communication between the two poles of the helix bundle. Protein structure network (PSN) analysis is one of the graph theory-based approaches currently used to investigate the structural communication in biomolecular systems. Information on system's dynamics can be provided by atomistic molecular dynamics (MD) simulations or coarse grained elastic network models paired with normal mode analysis (ENM-NMA). The present review article describes the application of PSN analysis to uncover the structural communication in G protein coupled receptors (GPCRs). Strategies to highlight changes in structural communication upon misfolding, dimerization and activation are described. Focus is put on the ENM-NMA-based strategy applied to the crystallographic structures of rhodopsin in its inactive (dark) and signalling active (meta II (MII)) states, highlighting changes in structure network and centrality of the retinal chromophore in differentiating the inactive and active states of the receptor. PMID:27068978

  5. Structural and functional insight into the universal stress protein family

    PubMed Central

    Tkaczuk, Karolina L; A Shumilin, Igor; Chruszcz, Maksymilian; Evdokimova, Elena; Savchenko, Alexei; Minor, Wladek

    2013-01-01

    We present the crystal structures of two universal stress proteins (USP) from Archaeoglobus fulgidus and Nitrosomonas europaea in both apo- and ligand-bound forms. This work is the first complete synthesis of the structural properties of 26 USP available in the Protein Data Bank, over 75% of which were determined by structure genomics centers with no additional information provided. The results of bioinformatic analyses of all available USP structures and their sequence homologs revealed that these two new USP structures share overall structural similarity with structures of USPs previously determined. Clustering and cladogram analyses, however, show how they diverge from other members of the USP superfamily and show greater similarity to USPs from organisms inhabiting extreme environments. We compared them with other archaeal and bacterial USPs and discuss their similarities and differences in context of structure, sequential motifs, and potential function. We also attempted to group all analyzed USPs into families, so that assignment of the potential function to those with no experimental data available would be possible by extrapolation. PMID:23745136

  6. Quantifying Neonicotinoid Insecticide Residues Escaping during Maize Planting with Vacuum Planters.

    PubMed

    Xue, Yingen; Limay-Rios, Victor; Smith, Jocelyn; Baute, Tracey; Forero, Luis Gabriel; Schaafsma, Arthur

    2015-11-01

    Neonicotinoid residues escaping in vacuum-planter exhaust during maize planting were measured in 25 fields in southwestern Ontario in 2013-2014 using filter bags to collect planter exhaust dust and horizontal and vertical sticky traps to collect planter operation-generated dust. Atrazine residues were used to differentiate between neonicotinoid residues originating from seed or from disturbed soil. Recovery rates of seed-applied neonicotinoids in exhaust were 0.014 and 0.365% in 2013 and 2014, respectively, calculated on the basis of neonicotinoid concentrations in preplant soil and seed application rates. Neonicotinoid exhaust emission rates were 0.0036 and 0.1104 g/ha for 2013 and 2014, respectively, with 99.9472 and 99.7820% originating from treated seed in 2013 and 2014, respectively, calculated on the basis of the atrazine marker. Rates of recovery of seed-applied neonicotinoid residues by exhaust filter bags were 0.015 and 0.437% for 2013 and 2014, respectively. Neonicotinoid residues captured on horizontal and vertical traps were 1.10 ng/cm2 (0.1104 g/ha) and 1.45 ng/cm2 (0.0029 g/ha), respectively, with 92.31 and 93.03% originating from treated seed, respectively, representing 0.3896% of the original active ingredient applied to the seed planted. Exposure to pollinators can be best reduced by strategies to keep active ingredient on the seed, below the soil surface, and in the field where applied. PMID:26437361

  7. Recent Structural Insights into Cytochrome P450 Function.

    PubMed

    Guengerich, F Peter; Waterman, Michael R; Egli, Martin

    2016-08-01

    Cytochrome P450 (P450) enzymes are important in the metabolism of drugs, steroids, fat-soluble vitamins, carcinogens, pesticides, and many other types of chemicals. Their catalytic activities are important issues in areas such as drug-drug interactions and endocrine function. During the past 30 years, structures of P450s have been very helpful in understanding function, particularly the mammalian P450 structures available in the past 15 years. We review recent activity in this area, focusing on the past 2 years (2014-2015). Structural work with microbial P450s includes studies related to the biosynthesis of natural products and the use of parasitic and fungal P450 structures as targets for drug discovery. Studies on mammalian P450s include the utilization of information about 'drug-metabolizing' P450s to improve drug development and also to understand the molecular bases of endocrine dysfunction. PMID:27267697

  8. Structural insights into G-quadruplexes: towards new anticancer drugs

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Danzhou; Okamoto, Keika

    2010-01-01

    DNA G-quadruplexes are DNA secondary structures formed in specific G-rich sequences. DNA sequences that can form G-quadruplexes have been found in regions with biological significance, such as human telomeres and oncogene-promoter regions. DNA G-quadruplexes have recently emerged as a new class of novel molecular targets for anticancer drugs. Recent progress on structural studies of the biologically relevant G-quadruplexes formed in human telomeres and in the promoter regions of human oncogenes will be discussed, as well as recent advances in the design and development of G-quadruplex-interactive drugs. DNA G-quadruplexes can readily form in solution under physiological conditions and are globularly folded nucleic acid structures. The molecular structures of intramolecular G-quadruplexes appear to differ from one another and, therefore, in principle may be differentially regulated and targeted by different proteins and drugs. PMID:20563318

  9. Structural Insights into tRNA Dynamics on the Ribosome

    PubMed Central

    Agirrezabala, Xabier; Valle, Mikel

    2015-01-01

    High-resolution structures at different stages, as well as biochemical, single molecule and computational approaches have highlighted the elasticity of tRNA molecules when bound to the ribosome. It is well acknowledged that the inherent structural flexibility of the tRNA lies at the heart of the protein synthesis process. Here, we review the recent advances and describe considerations that the conformational changes of the tRNA molecules offer about the mechanisms grounded in translation. PMID:25941930

  10. Structural Insights into tRNA Dynamics on the Ribosome.

    PubMed

    Agirrezabala, Xabier; Valle, Mikel

    2015-01-01

    High-resolution structures at different stages, as well as biochemical, single molecule and computational approaches have highlighted the elasticity of tRNA molecules when bound to the ribosome. It is well acknowledged that the inherent structural flexibility of the tRNA lies at the heart of the protein synthesis process. Here, we review the recent advances and describe considerations that the conformational changes of the tRNA molecules offer about the mechanisms grounded in translation. PMID:25941930

  11. Insights to primitive replication derived from structures of small oligonucleotides

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, G. K.; Fox, G. E.

    1995-01-01

    Available information on the structure of small oligonucleotides is surveyed. It is observed that even small oligomers typically exhibit defined structures over a wide range of pH and temperature. These structures rely on a plethora of non-standard base-base interactions in addition to the traditional Watson-Crick pairings. Stable duplexes, though typically antiparallel, can be parallel or staggered and perfect complementarity is not essential. These results imply that primitive template directed reactions do not require high fidelity. Hence, the extensive use of Watson-Crick complementarity in genes rather than being a direct consequence of the primitive condensation process, may instead reflect subsequent selection based on the advantage of accuracy in maintaining the primitive genetic machinery once it arose.

  12. Analysis of the kinesin superfamily: insights into structure and function.

    PubMed

    Miki, Harukata; Okada, Yasushi; Hirokawa, Nobutaka

    2005-09-01

    Kinesin superfamily proteins (KIFs) are key players or 'hub' proteins in the intracellular transport system, which is essential for cellular function and morphology. The KIF superfamily is also the first large protein family in mammals whose constituents have been completely identified and confirmed both in silico and in vivo. Numerous studies have revealed the structures and functions of individual family members; however, the relationships between members or a perspective of the whole superfamily structure until recently remained elusive. Here, we present a comprehensive summary based on a large, systematic phylogenetic analysis of the kinesin superfamily. All available sequences in public databases, including genomic information from all model organisms, were analyzed to yield the most complete phylogenetic kinesin tree thus far, comprising 14 families. This comprehensive classification builds on the recently proposed standardized nomenclature for kinesins and allows systematic analysis of the structural and functional relationships within the kinesin superfamily. PMID:16084724

  13. A new structural insight into XPA–DNA interactions

    PubMed Central

    Hilton, Benjamin; Shkriabai, Nick; Musich, Phillip R.; Kvaratskhelia, Mamuka; Shell, Steven; Zou, Yue

    2014-01-01

    XPA (xeroderma pigmentosum group A) protein is an essential factor for NER (nucleotide excision repair) which is believed to be involved in DNA damage recognition/verification, NER factor recruiting and stabilization of repair intermediates. Past studies on the structure of XPA have focused primarily on XPA interaction with damaged DNA. However, how XPA interacts with other DNA structures remains unknown though recent evidence suggest that these structures could be important for its roles in both NER and non-NER activities. Previously, we reported that XPA recognizes undamaged DNA ds/ssDNA (double-strand/single-strandDNA) junctions with a binding affinity much higher than its ability to bind bulky DNA damage. To understand how this interaction occurs biochemically we implemented a structural determination of the interaction using a MS-based protein footprinting method and limited proteolysis. By monitoring surface accessibility of XPA lysines to NHS-biotin modification in the free protein and the DNA junction-bound complex we show that XPA physically interacts with the DNA junctions via two lysines, K168 and K179, located in the previously known XPA(98–219) DBD (DNA-binding domain). Importantly, we also uncovered new lysine residues, outside of the known DBD, involved in the binding. We found that residues K221, K222, K224 and K236 in the C-terminal domain are involved in DNA binding. Limited proteolysis analysis of XPA–DNA interactions further confirmed this observation. Structural modelling with these data suggests a clamp-like DBD for the XPA binding to ds/ssDNA junctions. Our results provide a novel structure-function view of XPA–DNA junction interactions. PMID:25385088

  14. Structural Insight into OprD Substrate Specifity

    SciTech Connect

    Biswas,S.; Mohammad, M.; Patel, D.; Movileanu, L.; van den Berg, B.

    2007-01-01

    OprD proteins form a large family of substrate-specific outer-membrane channels in Gram-negative bacteria. We report here the X-ray crystal structure of OprD from Pseudomonas aeruginosa, which reveals a monomeric 18-stranded beta-barrel characterized by a very narrow pore constriction, with a positively charged basic ladder on one side and an electronegative pocket on the other side. The location of highly conserved residues in OprD suggests that the structure represents the general architecture of OprD channels.

  15. New Insight into Carbon Nanotube Electronic Structure Selectivity

    SciTech Connect

    Sumpter, Bobby G; Meunier, Vincent; Jiang, Deen

    2009-01-01

    The fundamental role of aryl diazonium salts for post synthesis selectivity of carbon nanotubes is investigated using extensive electronic structure calculations. The resulting understanding for diazonium salt based selective separation of conducting and semiconducting carbon nanotubes shows how the primary contributions come from the interplay between the intrinsic electronic structure of the carbon nanotubes and that of the anion of the salt. We demonstrate how the electronic transport properties change upon the formation of charge transfer complexes and upon their conversion into covalently attached functional groups. Our results are found to correlate well with experiments and provide for the first time an atomistic description for diazonium salt based chemical separation of carbon nanotubes

  16. Evaluation of river pollution of neonicotinoids in Osaka City (Japan) by LC/MS with dopant-assisted photoionisation.

    PubMed

    Yamamoto, Atsushi; Terao, Tomoko; Hisatomi, Hirotaka; Kawasaki, Hideya; Arakawa, Ryuichi

    2012-08-01

    An atmospheric pressure photoionisation (APPI) source for liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry (LC/MS) was applied to determine neonicotinoid pesticides in the aquatic environment. Dopant-assisted APPI was very effective in the ionisation of neonicotinoids. Neonicotinoids generated protonated molecules in APPI with high sensitivity, while adduct ions, such as sodiated molecules, were predominantly generated in conventional electrospray ionisation. The ionisation of neonicotinoids was confirmed by ultra-high-resolution MS. An analytical method coupled with solid phase extraction was developed for acetamiprid, clothianidin, dinotefuran, imidacloprid, nitenpyram, and thiamethoxam. Method detection limits were 0.47 to 2.1 ng L(-1) for six neonicotinoids. Dinotefuran was the most frequent and highest among the neonicotinoids examined in the aquatic environment in Osaka, Japan. The maximum concentration of dinotefuran was 220 ng L(-1). Given the toxicity of neonicotinoids for aquatic creatures, the concentrations observed here were substantially low. The change in concentrations was temporally coincident with the period of the neonicotinoid application. Although rapid photodegradation and some degradation products have been elucidated, the degradation products in the aquatic environment were not identified in the present study. PMID:22767100

  17. New insights into the structure and mechanism of iodothyronine deiodinases.

    PubMed

    Schweizer, Ulrich; Steegborn, Clemens

    2015-12-01

    Iodothyronine deiodinases are a family of enzymes that remove specific iodine atoms from one of the two aromatic rings in thyroid hormones (THs). They thereby fine-tune local TH concentrations and cellular TH signaling. Deiodinases catalyze a remarkable biochemical reaction, i.e., the reductive elimination of a halogenide from an aromatic ring. In metazoans, deiodinases depend on the rare amino acid selenocysteine. The recent solution of the first experimental structure of a deiodinase catalytic domain allowed for a reappraisal of the many mechanistic and mutagenesis data that had been accumulated over more than 30 years. Hence, the structure generates new impetus for research directed at understanding catalytic mechanism, substrate specificity, and regulation of deiodinases. This review will focus on structural and mechanistic aspects of iodothyronine deiodinases and briefly compare these enzymes with dehalogenases, which catalyze related reactions. A general mechanism for the selenium-dependent deiodinase reaction will be described, which integrates the mouse deiodinase 3 crystal structure and biochemical studies. We will summarize further, sometimes isoform-specific molecular features of deiodinase catalysis and regulation, and we will then discuss available compounds for modulating deiodinase activity for therapeutic purposes. PMID:26390881

  18. Transmembrane potential polarization, calcium influx, and receptor conformational state modulate the sensitivity of the imidacloprid-insensitive neuronal insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptor to neonicotinoid insecticides.

    PubMed

    Bodereau-Dubois, Béatrice; List, Olivier; Calas-List, Delphine; Marques, Olivier; Communal, Pierre-Yves; Thany, Steeve H; Lapied, Bruno

    2012-05-01

    Neonicotinoid insecticides act selectively on insect nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Recent studies revealed that their efficiency was altered by the phosphorylation/dephosphorylation process and the intracellular signaling pathway involved in the regulation of nAChRs. Using whole-cell patch-clamp electrophysiology adapted for dissociated cockroach dorsal unpaired median (DUM) neurons, we demonstrated that intracellular factors involved in the regulation of nAChR function modulated neonicotinoid sensitivity. DUM neurons were known to express two α-bungarotoxin-insensitive nAChR subtypes: nAChR1 and nAChR2. Whereas nAChR1 was sensitive to imidacloprid, nAChR2 was insensitive to this insecticide. Here, we demonstrated that, like nicotine, acetamiprid and clothianidin, other types of neonicotinoid insecticides, acted as agonists on the nAChR2 subtype. Using acetamiprid, we revealed that both steady-state depolarization and hyperpolarization affected nAChR2 sensitivity. The measurement of the input membrane resistance indicated that change in the acetamiprid-induced agonist activity was related to the receptor conformational state. Using cadmium chloride, ω-conotoxin GVIA, and (R,S)-(3,4-dihydro-6,7-dimethoxy-isoquinoline-1-yl)-2-phenyl-N,N-di-acetamide (LOE 908), we found that inhibition of calcium influx through high voltage-activated calcium channels and transient receptor potential γ (TRPγ) activated by both depolarization and hyperpolarization increased nAChR2 sensitivity to acetamiprid. Finally, using N-(6-aminohexyl)-5-chloro-1-naphthalenesulfonamide hydrochloride (W7), forskolin, and cAMP, we demonstrated that adenylyl cyclase sensitive to the calcium/calmodulin complex regulated internal cAMP concentration, which in turn modulated TRPγ function and nAChR2 sensitivity to acetamiprid. Similar TRPγ-induced modulatory effects were also obtained when clothianidin was tested. These findings bring insights into the signaling pathway modulating

  19. Structural Insights into Ail-Mediated Adhesion in Yersinia pestis

    SciTech Connect

    Yamashita, Satoshi; Lukacik, Petra; Barnard, Travis J.; Noinaj, Nicholas; Felek, Suleyman; Tsang, Tiffany M.; Krukonis, Eric S.; Hinnebusch, B. Joseph; Buchanan, Susan K.

    2012-01-30

    Ail is an outer membrane protein from Yersinia pestis that is highly expressed in a rodent model of bubonic plague, making it a good candidate for vaccine development. Ail is important for attaching to host cells and evading host immune responses, facilitating rapid progression of a plague infection. Binding to host cells is important for injection of cytotoxic Yersinia outer proteins. To learn more about how Ail mediates adhesion, we solved two high-resolution crystal structures of Ail, with no ligand bound and in complex with a heparin analog called sucrose octasulfate. We identified multiple adhesion targets, including laminin and heparin, and showed that a 40 kDa domain of laminin called LG4-5 specifically binds to Ail. We also evaluated the contribution of laminin to delivery of Yops to HEp-2 cells. This work constitutes a structural description of how a bacterial outer membrane protein uses a multivalent approach to bind host cells.

  20. Structural characterization of human heparanase reveals insights into substrate recognition.

    PubMed

    Wu, Liang; Viola, Cristina M; Brzozowski, Andrzej M; Davies, Gideon J

    2015-12-01

    Heparan sulfate (HS) is a glycosaminoglycan that forms a key component of the extracellular matrix (ECM). Breakdown of HS is carried out by heparanase (HPSE), an endo-β-glucuronidase of the glycoside hydrolase 79 (GH79) family. Overexpression of HPSE results in breakdown of extracellular HS and release of stored growth factors and hence is strongly linked to cancer metastasis. Here we present crystal structures of human HPSE at 1.6-Å to 1.9-Å resolution that reveal how an endo-acting binding cleft is exposed by proteolytic activation of latent proHPSE. We used oligosaccharide complexes to map the substrate-binding and sulfate-recognition motifs. These data shed light on the structure and interactions of a key enzyme involved in ECM maintenance and provide a starting point for the design of HPSE inhibitors for use as biochemical tools and anticancer therapeutics. PMID:26575439

  1. Structural neuroimaging in schizophrenia from methods to insights to treatments

    PubMed Central

    Shenton, Martha E.; Whitford, Thomas J.; Kubicki, Marek

    2010-01-01

    Historically, Kraepelin speculated that dementia praecox resulted from damage to the cerebral cortex, most notably the frontal and temporal cortices. It is only recently, however, that tools have been available to test this hypothesis. Now, more than a century later, we know that schizophrenia is a brain disorder. This knowledge comes from critical advances in imaging technology- including computerized axial tomography, magnetic resonance imaging, and diffusion imaging - all of which provide an unprecedented view of neuroanatomical structures, in vivo. Here, we review evidence for structural neuroimaging abnormalities, beginning with evidence for focal brain abnormalities, primarily in gray matter, and proceeding to the quest to identify abnormalities in brain systems and circuits by focusing on damage to white matter connections in the brain. We then review future prospects that need to be explored and pursued in order to translate our current knowledge into an understanding of the neurobiology of schizophrenia, which can then be translated into novel treatments. PMID:20954428

  2. Structural characterization of human heparanase reveals insights into substrate recognition

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Liang; Viola, Cristina M.; Brzozowski, Andrzej M.; Davies, Gideon J.

    2016-01-01

    Heparan Sulfate (HS) is a glycosaminoglycan (GAG) which forms a key component of the extracellular matrix (ECM). Breakdown of HS is carried out by heparanase (HPSE), an endo-β-glucuronidase of the glycoside hydrolase (GH)79 family. Overexpression of HPSE is strongly linked to cancer metastases - reflecting breakdown of extracellular HS and release of stored growth factors. Here we present crystal structures of human HPSE at 1.6-1.9 Å resolution reveal how an endo-acting binding cleft is exposed by proteolytic activation of latent proHPSE. Oligosaccharide complexes map the substrate-binding and sulfate recognition motifs. These data shed light on the structure and interactions for a key enzyme involved in ECM maintenance, and provide a starting point for design of HPSE inhibitors as biochemical tools and anti-cancer therapeutics. PMID:26575439

  3. Structural neuroimaging in schizophrenia: from methods to insights to treatments.

    PubMed

    Shenton, Martha E; Whitford, Thomas J; Kubicki, Marek

    2010-01-01

    Historically, Kraepelin speculated that dementia praecox resulted from damage to the cerebral cortex, most notably the frontal and temporal cortices. It is only recently, however, that tools have been available to test this hypothesis. Now, more than a century later, we know that schizophrenia is a brain disorder. This knowledge comes from critical advances in imaging technology--including computerized axial tomography, magnetic resonance imaging, and diffusion imaging--all of which provide an unprecedented view of neuroanatomical structures, in vivo. Here, we review evidence for structural neuroimaging abnormalities, beginning with evidence for focal brain abnormalities, primarily in gray matter, and proceeding to the quest to identify abnormalities in brain systems and circuits by focusing on damage to white matter connections in the brain. We then review future prospects that need to be explored and pursued in order to translate our current knowledge into an understanding of the neurobiology of schizophrenia, which can then be translated into novel treatments. PMID:20954428

  4. Crustal structure of central Lake Baikal: Insights into intracontinental rifting

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    ten Brink, U.S.; Taylor, M.H.

    2002-01-01

    The Cenozoic rift system of Baikal, located in the interior of the largest continental mass on Earth, is thought to represent a potential analog of the early stage of breakup of supercontinents. We present a detailed P wave velocity structure of the crust and sediments beneath the Central Basin, the deepest basin in the Baikal rift system. The structure is characterized by a Moho depth of 39-42.5 km; an 8-km-thick, laterally continuous high-velocity (7.05-7.4 km/s) lower crust, normal upper mantle velocity (8 km/s), a sedimentary section reaching maximum depths of 9 km, and a gradual increase of sediment velocity with depth. We interpret the high-velocity lower crust to be part of the Siberian Platform that was not thinned or altered significantly during rifting. In comparison to published results from the Siberian Platform, Moho under the basin is elevated by <3 km. On the basis of these results we propose that the basin was formed by upper crustal extension, possibly reactivating structures in an ancient fold-and-thrust belt. The extent and location of upper mantle extension are not revealed by our data, and it may be offset from the rift. We believe that the Baikal rift structure is similar in many respects to the Mesozoic Atlantic rift system, the precursor to the formation of the North Atlantic Ocean. We also propose that the Central Baikal rift evolved by episodic fault propagation and basin enlargement, rather than by two-stage rift evolution as is commonly assumed.

  5. The Neonicotinoid Insecticide Imidacloprid Repels Pollinating Flies and Beetles at Field-Realistic Concentrations

    PubMed Central

    Easton, Amy H.; Goulson, Dave

    2013-01-01

    Neonicotinoids are widely used systemic insecticides which, when applied to flowering crops, are translocated to the nectar and pollen where they may impact upon pollinators. Given global concerns over pollinator declines, this potential impact has recently received much attention. Field exposure of pollinators to neonicotinoids depends on the concentrations present in flowering crops and the degree to which pollinators choose to feed upon them. Here we describe a simple experiment using paired yellow pan traps with or without insecticide to assess whether the commonly used neonicotinoid imidacloprid repels or attracts flying insects. Both Diptera and Coleoptera exhibited marked avoidance of traps containing imidacloprid at a field-realistic dose of 1 µg L−1, with Diptera avoiding concentrations as low as 0.01 µg L−1. This is to our knowledge the first evidence for any biological activity at such low concentrations, which are below the limits of laboratory detection using most commonly available techniques. Catch of spiders in pan traps was also slightly reduced by the highest concentrations of imidacloprid used (1 µg L−1), but catch was increased by lower concentrations. It remains to be seen if the repellent effect on insects occurs when neonicotinoids are present in real flowers, but if so then this could have implications for exposure of pollinators to neonicotinoids and for crop pollination. PMID:23382980

  6. Neonicotinoid-Coated Zea mays Seeds Indirectly Affect Honeybee Performance and Pathogen Susceptibility in Field Trials

    PubMed Central

    Alburaki, Mohamed; Boutin, Sébastien; Mercier, Pierre-Luc; Loublier, Yves; Chagnon, Madeleine; Derome, Nicolas

    2015-01-01

    Thirty-two honeybee (Apis mellifera) colonies were studied in order to detect and measure potential in vivo effects of neonicotinoid pesticides used in cornfields (Zea mays spp) on honeybee health. Honeybee colonies were randomly split on four different agricultural cornfield areas located near Quebec City, Canada. Two locations contained cornfields treated with a seed-coated systemic neonicotinoid insecticide while the two others were organic cornfields used as control treatments. Hives were extensively monitored for their performance and health traits over a period of two years. Honeybee viruses (brood queen cell virus BQCV, deformed wing virus DWV, and Israeli acute paralysis virus IAPV) and the brain specific expression of a biomarker of host physiological stress, the Acetylcholinesterase gene AChE, were investigated using RT-qPCR. Liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) was performed to detect pesticide residues in adult bees, honey, pollen, and corn flowers collected from the studied hives in each location. In addition, general hive conditions were assessed by monitoring colony weight and brood development. Neonicotinoids were only identified in corn flowers at low concentrations. However, honeybee colonies located in neonicotinoid treated cornfields expressed significantly higher pathogen infection than those located in untreated cornfields. AChE levels showed elevated levels among honeybees that collected corn pollen from treated fields. Positive correlations were recorded between pathogens and the treated locations. Our data suggests that neonicotinoids indirectly weaken honeybee health by inducing physiological stress and increasing pathogen loads. PMID:25993642

  7. Neonicotinoid-Coated Zea mays Seeds Indirectly Affect Honeybee Performance and Pathogen Susceptibility in Field Trials.

    PubMed

    Alburaki, Mohamed; Boutin, Sébastien; Mercier, Pierre-Luc; Loublier, Yves; Chagnon, Madeleine; Derome, Nicolas

    2015-01-01

    Thirty-two honeybee (Apis mellifera) colonies were studied in order to detect and measure potential in vivo effects of neonicotinoid pesticides used in cornfields (Zea mays spp) on honeybee health. Honeybee colonies were randomly split on four different agricultural cornfield areas located near Quebec City, Canada. Two locations contained cornfields treated with a seed-coated systemic neonicotinoid insecticide while the two others were organic cornfields used as control treatments. Hives were extensively monitored for their performance and health traits over a period of two years. Honeybee viruses (brood queen cell virus BQCV, deformed wing virus DWV, and Israeli acute paralysis virus IAPV) and the brain specific expression of a biomarker of host physiological stress, the Acetylcholinesterase gene AChE, were investigated using RT-qPCR. Liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) was performed to detect pesticide residues in adult bees, honey, pollen, and corn flowers collected from the studied hives in each location. In addition, general hive conditions were assessed by monitoring colony weight and brood development. Neonicotinoids were only identified in corn flowers at low concentrations. However, honeybee colonies located in neonicotinoid treated cornfields expressed significantly higher pathogen infection than those located in untreated cornfields. AChE levels showed elevated levels among honeybees that collected corn pollen from treated fields. Positive correlations were recorded between pathogens and the treated locations. Our data suggests that neonicotinoids indirectly weaken honeybee health by inducing physiological stress and increasing pathogen loads. PMID:25993642

  8. Sex allocation theory reveals a hidden cost of neonicotinoid exposure in a parasitoid wasp

    PubMed Central

    Whitehorn, Penelope R.; Cook, Nicola; Blackburn, Charlotte V.; Gill, Sophie M.; Green, Jade; Shuker, David M.

    2015-01-01

    Sex allocation theory has proved to be one the most successful theories in evolutionary ecology. However, its role in more applied aspects of ecology has been limited. Here we show how sex allocation theory helps uncover an otherwise hidden cost of neonicotinoid exposure in the parasitoid wasp Nasonia vitripennis. Female N. vitripennis allocate the sex of their offspring in line with Local Mate Competition (LMC) theory. Neonicotinoids are an economically important class of insecticides, but their deployment remains controversial, with evidence linking them to the decline of beneficial species. We demonstrate for the first time to our knowledge, that neonicotinoids disrupt the crucial reproductive behaviour of facultative sex allocation at sub-lethal, field-relevant doses in N. vitripennis. The quantitative predictions we can make from LMC theory show that females exposed to neonicotinoids are less able to allocate sex optimally and that this failure imposes a significant fitness cost. Our work highlights that understanding the ecological consequences of neonicotinoid deployment requires not just measures of mortality or even fecundity reduction among non-target species, but also measures that capture broader fitness costs, in this case offspring sex allocation. Our work also highlights new avenues for exploring how females obtain information when allocating sex under LMC. PMID:25925105

  9. Structural Insights Into the Evolutionary Paths of Oxylipin Biosynthetic Enzymes

    SciTech Connect

    Lee, D.-S.; Nioche, P.; Hamberg, M.; Raman, C.S.

    2009-05-20

    The oxylipin pathway generates not only prostaglandin-like jasmonates but also green leaf volatiles (GLVs), which confer characteristic aromas to fruits and vegetables. Although allene oxide synthase (AOS) and hydroperoxide lyase are atypical cytochrome P450 family members involved in the synthesis of jasmonates and GLVs, respectively, it is unknown how these enzymes rearrange their hydroperoxide substrates into different products. Here we present the crystal structures of Arabidopsis thaliana AOS, free and in complex with substrate or intermediate analogues. The structures reveal an unusual active site poised to control the reactivity of an epoxyallylic radical and its cation by means of interactions with an aromatic {pi}-system. Replacing the amino acid involved in these steps by a non-polar residue markedly reduces AOS activity and, unexpectedly, is both necessary and sufficient for converting AOS into a GLV biosynthetic enzyme. Furthermore, by combining our structural data with bioinformatic and biochemical analyses, we have discovered previously unknown hydroperoxide lyase in plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria, AOS in coral, and epoxyalcohol synthase in amphioxus. These results indicate that oxylipin biosynthetic genes were present in the last common ancestor of plants and animals, but were subsequently lost in all metazoan lineages except Placozoa, Cnidaria and Cephalochordata.

  10. Structural Insight into Substrate Selectivity of Erwinia chrysanthemil-Asparaginase

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    l-Asparaginases of bacterial origin are a mainstay of acute lymphoblastic leukemia treatment. The mechanism of action of these enzyme drugs is associated with their capacity to deplete the amino acid l-asparagine from the blood. However, clinical use of bacterial l-asparaginases is complicated by their dual l-asparaginase and l-glutaminase activities. The latter, even though representing only ∼10% of the overall activity, is partially responsible for the observed toxic side effects. Hence, l-asparaginases devoid of l-glutaminase activity hold potential as safer drugs. Understanding the key determinants of l-asparaginase substrate specificity is a prerequisite step toward the development of enzyme variants with reduced toxicity. Here we present crystal structures of the Erwinia chrysanthemil-asparaginase in complex with l-aspartic acid and with l-glutamic acid. These structures reveal two enzyme conformations—open and closed—corresponding to the inactive and active states, respectively. The binding of ligands induces the positioning of the catalytic Thr15 into its active conformation, which in turn allows for the ordering and closure of the flexible N-terminal loop. Notably, l-aspartic acid is more efficient than l-glutamic acid in inducing the active positioning of Thr15. Structural elements explaining the preference of the enzyme for l-asparagine over l-glutamine are discussed with guidance to the future development of more specific l-asparaginases. PMID:26855287

  11. Electronic structure of hydrogenated diamond: Microscopical insight into surface conductivity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iacobucci, S.; Alippi, Paola; Calvani, P.; Girolami, M.; Offi, F.; Petaccia, L.; Trucchi, D. M.

    2016-07-01

    We have correlated the surface conductivity of hydrogen-terminated diamond to the electronic structure in the Fermi region. Significant density of electronic states (DOS) in proximity of the Fermi edge has been measured by photoelectron spectroscopy (PES) on surfaces exposed to air, corresponding to a p -type electric conductive regime, while upon annealing a depletion of the DOS has been achieved, resembling the diamond insulating state. The surface and subsurface electronic structure has been determined, exploiting the different probing depths of PES applied in a photon energy range between 7 and 31 eV. Ab initio density functional calculations including surface charge depletion and band-bending effects favorably compare with electronic states measured by angular-resolved photoelectron spectroscopy. Such states are organized in the energy-momentum space in a twofold structure: one, bulk-derived, band disperses in the Γ -X direction with an average hole effective mass of (0.43 ±0.02 ) m0 , where m0 is the bare electron mass; a second flatter band, with an effective mass of (2.2 ±0.9 ) m0 , proves that a hole gas confined in the topmost layers is responsible for the conductivity of the (2 ×1 ) hydrogen-terminated diamond (100 ) surface.

  12. Structural insights into μ-opioid receptor activation

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Weijiao; Manglik, Aashish; Venkatakrishnan, A. J.; Laeremans, Toon; Feinberg, Evan N.; Sanborn, Adrian L.; Kato, Hideaki E.; Livingston, Kathryn E.; Thorsen, Thor S.; Kling, Ralf; Granier, Sébastien; Gmeiner, Peter; Husbands, Stephen M.; Traynor, John R.; Weis, William I.; Steyaert, Jan; Dror, Ron O.; Kobilka, Brian K.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Activation of the μ-opioid receptor (μOR) is responsible for the efficacy of the most effective analgesics. To understand the structural basis for μOR activation, we obtained a 2.1 Å X-ray crystal structure of the μOR bound to the morphinan agonist BU72 and stabilized by a G protein-mimetic camelid-antibody fragment. The BU72-stabilized changes in the μOR binding pocket are subtle and differ from those observed for agonist-bound structures of the β2 adrenergic receptor (β2AR) and the M2 muscarinic receptor (M2R). Comparison with active β2AR reveals a common rearrangement in the packing of three conserved amino acids in the core of the μOR, and molecular dynamics simulations illustrate how the ligand-binding pocket is conformationally linked to this conserved triad. Additionally, an extensive polar network between the ligand-binding pocket and the cytoplasmic domains appears to play a similar role in signal propagation for all three GPCRs. PMID:26245379

  13. New Insights into Mitochondrial Structure during Cell Death

    PubMed Central

    Perkins, Guy; Bossy-Wetzel, Ella; Ellisman, Mark H.

    2009-01-01

    Mitochondria play a pivotal role in the cascade of events associated with cell death pathways that are involved with several forms of neurodegeneration. Recent findings show that in the Bax/Bak-dependent pathway of apoptosis, the release of cytochrome c from mitochondria is a consequence of two carefully coordinated events: opening of crista junctions triggered by OPA1 oligomer disassembly and formation of outer-membrane pores. Both steps are necessary for the complete release of proapoptotic proteins. The remodeling of mitochondrial structure accompanies this pathway, including mitochondrial fission, and cristae and crista junction alterations. Yet, there is controversy surrounding the timing of certain remodeling events and whether they are necessary early events required for the release of pro-apoptotic factors or are simply a downstream after-effect. Here, we analyze the current knowledge of mitochondrial remodeling during cell death and discuss what structural alterations occur to this organelle during neurodegeneration, focusing on the higher resolution structural correlates obtained by electron microscopy and electron tomography. PMID:19464290

  14. Amyloid Structure and Assembly: Insights from Scanning Transmission Electron Microscopy

    SciTech Connect

    Goldsbury, C.; Wall, J.; Baxa, U.; Simon, M. N.; Steven, A. C.; Engel, A.; Aebi, U.; Muller, S. A.

    2011-01-01

    Amyloid fibrils are filamentous protein aggregates implicated in several common diseases such as Alzheimer's disease and type II diabetes. Similar structures are also the molecular principle of the infectious spongiform encephalopathies such as Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease in humans, scrapie in sheep, and of the so-called yeast prions, inherited non-chromosomal elements found in yeast and fungi. Scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM) is often used to delineate the assembly mechanism and structural properties of amyloid aggregates. In this review we consider specifically contributions and limitations of STEM for the investigation of amyloid assembly pathways, fibril polymorphisms and structural models of amyloid fibrils. This type of microscopy provides the only method to directly measure the mass-per-length (MPL) of individual filaments. Made on both in vitro assembled and ex vivo samples, STEM mass measurements have illuminated the hierarchical relationships between amyloid fibrils and revealed that polymorphic fibrils and various globular oligomers can assemble simultaneously from a single polypeptide. The MPLs also impose strong constraints on possible packing schemes, assisting in molecular model building when combined with high-resolution methods like solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR).

  15. Structure of CD84 Provides Insight into SLAM Family Function

    SciTech Connect

    Yan,Q.; Malashkevich, V.; Fedorov, A.; Fedorov, E.; Cao, E.; Lary, J.; Cole, J.; Nathenson, S.; Almo, S.

    2007-01-01

    The signaling lymphocyte activation molecule (SLAM) family includes homophilic and heterophilic receptors that modulate both adaptive and innate immune responses. These receptors share a common ectodomain organization: a membrane-proximal immunoglobulin constant domain and a membrane-distal immunoglobulin variable domain that is responsible for ligand recognition. CD84 is a homophilic family member that enhances IFN-{gamma} secretion in activated T cells. Our solution studies revealed that CD84 strongly self-associates with a K{sub d} in the submicromolar range. These data, in combination with previous reports, demonstrate that the SLAM family homophilic affinities span at least three orders of magnitude and suggest that differences in the affinities may contribute to the distinct signaling behavior exhibited by the individual family members. The 2.0 {angstrom} crystal structure of the human CD84 immunoglobulin variable domain revealed an orthogonal homophilic dimer with high similarity to the recently reported homophilic dimer of the SLAM family member NTB-A. Structural and chemical differences in the homophilic interfaces provide a mechanism to prevent the formation of undesired heterodimers among the SLAM family homophilic receptors. These structural data also suggest that, like NTB-A, all SLAM family homophilic dimers adopt a highly kinked organization spanning an end-to-end distance of {approx}140 {angstrom}. This common molecular dimension provides an opportunity for all two-domain SLAM family receptors to colocalize within the immunological synapse and bridge the T cell and antigen-presenting cell.

  16. New insight on bismuth cuprates with incommensurate modulated structures.

    PubMed

    Mironov, Andrei V; Petříček, Vaclav; Khasanova, Nellie R; Antipov, Evgeny V

    2016-06-01

    The incommensurate modulated crystal structure of Bi2.27Sr1.73CuO6 + δ (2201) phase [a = 5.3874 (5), b = 5.3869 (4), c = 24.579 (3) Å; β = 90.01 (1)°, q = 0.2105 (3)a(*) + 0.538 (4)c(*), Z = 4, the (3 + 1)-dimensional monoclinic A2/a(α0γ) group] has been refined with R = 0.041, wR = 0.052 from X-ray single-crystal data including up to third-order satellite reflections. The same structure has also been considered as incommensurate composite with a2 = 2.437, b2 = 5.387, c2 = 24.614, β2 = 93.06, q2 = 0.4524a2(*)-0.243c2(*) and the (3 + 1)-dimensional A2/m(α0γ)0s group for the second component. Both approaches give quite similar results. The structure possesses oxygen disorder in the oxygen-rich region of the BiO layer. An extra O atom is determined in the bridging position shifted ∼ 0.6 Å from BiO towards the SrO layer. Its presence is the cause of the tremendous increase of the bismuth U(11) atomic displacement parameter in ∼ 20% of the unit cells (t = -0.05-0.15). Vacancies are determined in the oxygen site of the SrO layer, which may result in the oxygen content variation with annealing at different oxygen pressures. The total refined oxygen content 6.18 (1) corresponds to the results of chemical analysis. PMID:27240771

  17. Thermodynamic and structural insights into CSL-DNA complexes

    SciTech Connect

    Friedmann, David R.; Kovall, Rhett A.

    2010-10-28

    The Notch pathway is an intercellular signaling mechanism that plays important roles in cell fates decisions throughout the developing and adult organism. Extracellular complexation of Notch receptors with ligands ultimately results in changes in gene expression, which is regulated by the nuclear effector of the pathway, CSL (C-promoter binding factor 1 (CBF-1), suppressor of hairless (Su(H)), lin-12 and glp-1 (Lag-1)). CSL is a DNA binding protein that is involved in both repression and activation of transcription from genes that are responsive to Notch signaling. One well-characterized Notch target gene is hairy and enhancer of split-1 (HES-1), which is regulated by a promoter element consisting of two CSL binding sites oriented in a head-to-head arrangement. Although previous studies have identified in vivo and consensus binding sites for CSL, and crystal structures of these complexes have been determined, to date, a quantitative description of the energetics that underlie CSL-DNA binding is unknown. Here, we provide a thermodynamic and structural analysis of the interaction between CSL and the two individual sites that comprise the HES-1 promoter element. Our comprehensive studies that analyze binding as a function of temperature, salt, and pH reveal moderate, but distinct, differences in the affinities of CSL for the two HES-1 binding sites. Similarly, our structural results indicate that overall CSL binds both DNA sites in a similar manner; however, minor changes are observed in both the conformation of CSL and DNA. Taken together, our results provide a quantitative and biophysical basis for understanding how CSL interacts with DNA sites in vivo.

  18. Structural Insights into Polymorphic ABO Glycan Binding by Helicobacter pylori.

    PubMed

    Moonens, Kristof; Gideonsson, Pär; Subedi, Suresh; Bugaytsova, Jeanna; Romaõ, Ema; Mendez, Melissa; Nordén, Jenny; Fallah, Mahsa; Rakhimova, Lena; Shevtsova, Anna; Lahmann, Martina; Castaldo, Gaetano; Brännström, Kristoffer; Coppens, Fanny; Lo, Alvin W; Ny, Tor; Solnick, Jay V; Vandenbussche, Guy; Oscarson, Stefan; Hammarström, Lennart; Arnqvist, Anna; Berg, Douglas E; Muyldermans, Serge; Borén, Thomas; Remaut, Han

    2016-01-13

    The Helicobacter pylori adhesin BabA binds mucosal ABO/Le(b) blood group (bg) carbohydrates. BabA facilitates bacterial attachment to gastric surfaces, increasing strain virulence and forming a recognized risk factor for peptic ulcers and gastric cancer. High sequence variation causes BabA functional diversity, but the underlying structural-molecular determinants are unknown. We generated X-ray structures of representative BabA isoforms that reveal a polymorphic, three-pronged Le(b) binding site. Two diversity loops, DL1 and DL2, provide adaptive control to binding affinity, notably ABO versus O bg preference. H. pylori strains can switch bg preference with single DL1 amino acid substitutions, and can coexpress functionally divergent BabA isoforms. The anchor point for receptor binding is the embrace of an ABO fucose residue by a disulfide-clasped loop, which is inactivated by reduction. Treatment with the redox-active pharmaceutic N-acetylcysteine lowers gastric mucosal neutrophil infiltration in H. pylori-infected Le(b)-expressing mice, providing perspectives on possible H. pylori eradication therapies. PMID:26764597

  19. Artemin Crystal Structure Reveals Insights into Heparan Sulfate Binding

    SciTech Connect

    Silvian,L.; Jin, P.; Carmillo, P.; Boriack-Sjodin, P.; Pelletier, C.; Rushe, M.; Gong, B.; Sah, D.; Pepinsky, B.; Rossomando, A.

    2006-01-01

    Artemin (ART) promotes the growth of developing peripheral neurons by signaling through a multicomponent receptor complex comprised of a transmembrane tyrosine kinase receptor (cRET) and a specific glycosylphosphatidylinositol-linked co-receptor (GFR{alpha}3). Glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) signals through a similar ternary complex but requires heparan sulfate proteoglycans (HSPGs) for full activity. HSPG has not been demonstrated as a requirement for ART signaling. We crystallized ART in the presence of sulfate and solved its structure by isomorphous replacement. The structure reveals ordered sulfate anions bound to arginine residues in the pre-helix and amino-terminal regions that were organized in a triad arrangement characteristic of heparan sulfate. Three residues in the pre-helix were singly or triply substituted with glutamic acid, and the resulting proteins were shown to have reduced heparin-binding affinity that is partly reflected in their ability to activate cRET. This study suggests that ART binds HSPGs and identifies residues that may be involved in HSPG binding.

  20. Structural and Functional Insight into Proliferating Cell Nuclear Antigen.

    PubMed

    Park, So Young; Jeong, Mi Suk; Han, Chang Woo; Yu, Hak Sun; Jang, Se Bok

    2016-04-28

    Proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) is a critical eukaryotic replication accessory factor that supports DNA binding in DNA processing, such as DNA replication, repair, and recombination. PCNA consists of three toroidal-shaped monomers that encircle doublestranded DNA. The diverse functions of PCNA may be regulated by its interactions with partner proteins. Many of the PCNA partner proteins generally have a conserved PCNAinteracting peptide (PIP) motif, located at the N- or C- terminal region. The PIP motif forms a 310 helix that enters into the hydrophobic groove produced by an interdomain-connecting loop, a central loop, and a C-terminal tail in the PCNA. Post-translational modification of PCNA also plays a critical role in regulation of its function and binding partner proteins. Structural and biochemical studies of PCNA-protein will be useful in designing therapeutic agents, as well as estimating the outcome of anticancer drug development. This review summarizes the characterization of eukaryotic PCNA in relation to the protein structures, functions, and modifications, and interaction with proteins. PMID:26699741

  1. Structural and Biochemical Insights into MLL1 Core Complex Assembly

    SciTech Connect

    Avdic, Vanja; Zhang, Pamela; Lanouette, Sylvain; Groulx, Adam; Tremblay, Véronique; Brunzelle, Joseph; Couture, Jean-François

    2012-05-02

    Histone H3 Lys-4 methylation is predominantly catalyzed by a family of methyltransferases whose enzymatic activity depends on their interaction with a three-subunit complex composed of WDR5, RbBP5, and Ash2L. Here, we report that a segment of 50 residues of RbBP5 bridges the Ash2L C-terminal domain to WDR5. The crystal structure of WDR5 in ternary complex with RbBP5 and MLL1 reveals that both proteins binds peptide-binding clefts located on opposite sides of WDR5s {beta}-propeller domain. RbBP5 engages in several hydrogen bonds and van der Waals contacts within a V-shaped cleft formed by the junction of two blades on WDR5. Mutational analyses of both the WDR5 V-shaped cleft and RbBP5 residues reveal that the interactions between RbBP5 and WDR5 are important for the stimulation of MLL1 methyltransferase activity. Overall, this study provides the structural basis underlying the formation of the WDR5-RbBP5 subcomplex and further highlight the crucial role of WDR5 in scaffolding the MLL1 core complex.

  2. Structural insights into RNA recognition by RIG-I

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Dahai; Ding, Steve C.; Vela, Adriana; Kohlway, Andrew; Lindenbach, Brett D.; Pyle, Anna Marie

    2011-01-01

    Summary Intracellular RIG-I-like receptors (RLRs, including RIG-I, MDA-5, and LGP-2) recognize viral RNAs as pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs) and initiate an antiviral immune response. To understand the molecular basis of this process, we determined the crystal structure of RIG-I in complex with double-stranded RNA. The dsRNA is sheathed within a network of protein domains that include a conserved “helicase” domain (regions HEL1 and HEL2), a specialized insertion domain (HEL2i), and a C-terminal regulatory domain (CTD). A V-shaped pincer connects HEL2 and the CTD by gripping an α-helical shaft that extends from HEL1. In this way, the pincer coordinates functions of all the domains and couples RNA binding with ATP hydrolysis. RIG-I falls within the Dicer-RIG-I clade of super family 2 of helicases and this structure reveals complex interplay between motor domains, accessory mechanical domains and RNA that has implications for understanding the nanomechanical function this protein family and other ATPases more broadly. PMID:22000018

  3. Structural Insights into RNA Recognition by RIG-I

    SciTech Connect

    Luo, Dahai; Ding, Steve C.; Vela, Adriana; Kohlway, Andrew; Lindenbach, Brett D.; Pyle, Anna Marie

    2011-10-27

    Intracellular RIG-I-like receptors (RLRs, including RIG-I, MDA-5, and LGP2) recognize viral RNAs as pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs) and initiate an antiviral immune response. To understand the molecular basis of this process, we determined the crystal structure of RIG-I in complex with double-stranded RNA (dsRNA). The dsRNA is sheathed within a network of protein domains that include a conserved 'helicase' domain (regions HEL1 and HEL2), a specialized insertion domain (HEL2i), and a C-terminal regulatory domain (CTD). A V-shaped pincer connects HEL2 and the CTD by gripping an {alpha}-helical shaft that extends from HEL1. In this way, the pincer coordinates functions of all the domains and couples RNA binding with ATP hydrolysis. RIG-I falls within the Dicer-RIG-I clade of the superfamily 2 helicases, and this structure reveals complex interplay between motor domains, accessory mechanical domains, and RNA that has implications for understanding the nanomechanical function of this protein family and other ATPases more broadly.

  4. Structural Insights into KCTD Protein Assembly and Cullin3 Recognition.

    PubMed

    Ji, Alan X; Chu, Anh; Nielsen, Tine Kragh; Benlekbir, Samir; Rubinstein, John L; Privé, Gilbert G

    2016-01-16

    Cullin3 (Cul3)-based ubiquitin E3 ligase complexes catalyze the transfer of ubiquitin from an E2 enzyme to target substrate proteins. In these assemblies, the C-terminal region of Cul3 binds Rbx1/E2-ubiquitin, while the N-terminal region interacts with various BTB (bric-à-brac, tramtrack, broad complex) domain proteins that serve as substrate adaptors. Previous crystal structures of the homodimeric BTB proteins KLHL3, KLHL11 and SPOP in complex with the N-terminal domain of Cul3 revealed the features required for Cul3 recognition in these proteins. A second class of BTB-domain-containing proteins, the KCTD proteins, is also Cul3 substrate adaptors, but these do not share many of the previously identified determinants for Cul3 binding. We report the pentameric crystal structures of the KCTD1 and KCTD9 BTB domains and identify plasticity in the KCTD1 rings. We find that the KCTD proteins 5, 6, 9 and 17 bind to Cul3 with high affinity, while the KCTD proteins 1 and 16 do not have detectable binding. Finally, we confirm the 5:5 assembly of KCTD9/Cul3 complexes by cryo-electron microscopy and provide a molecular rationale for BTB-mediated Cul3 binding specificity in the KCTD family. PMID:26334369

  5. Structural and mechanistic insights into Mps1 kinase activation

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Wei; Yang, Yuting; Gao, Yuefeng; Xu, Quanbin; Wang, Feng; Zhu, Songcheng; Old, William; Resing, Katheryn; Ahn, Natalie; Lei, Ming; Liu, Xuedong

    2010-11-05

    Mps1 is one of the several essential kinases whose activation is required for robust mitotic spindle checkpoint signalling. The activity of Mps1 is tightly regulated and increases dramatically during mitosis or in response to spindle damage. To understand the molecular mechanism underlying Mps1 regulation, we determined the crystal structure of the kinase domain of Mps1. The 2.7-{angstrom}-resolution crystal structure shows that the Mps1 kinase domain adopts a unique inactive conformation. Intramolecular interactions between the key Glu residue in the {alpha}C helix of the N-terminal lobe and the backbone amides in the catalytic loop lock the kinase in the inactive conformation. Autophosphorylation appears to be a priming event for kinase activation. We identified Mps1 autophosphorylation sites in the activation and the P+1 loops. Whereas activation loop autophosphorylation enhances kinase activity, autophosphorylation at the P+1 loop (T686) is associated with the active kinase. Mutation of T686 autophosphorylation site impairs both autophosphorylation and transphosphorylation. Furthermore, we demonstrated that phosphorylation of T676 may be a priming event for phosphorylation at T686. Finally, we identified two critical lysine residues in the loop between helices {alpha}EF and {alpha}F that are essential for substrate recruitment and maintaining high levels of kinase activity. Our studies reveal critical biochemical mechanisms for Mps1 kinase regulation.

  6. Structural insights into Paf1 complex assembly and histone binding.

    PubMed

    Chu, Xinlei; Qin, Xiaohong; Xu, Huisha; Li, Lei; Wang, Zheng; Li, Fengzhi; Xie, Xingqiao; Zhou, Hao; Shen, Yuequan; Long, Jiafu

    2013-12-01

    The highly conserved Paf1 complex (PAF1C) plays critical roles in RNA polymerase II transcription elongation and in the regulation of histone modifications. It has also been implicated in other diverse cellular activities, including posttranscriptional events, embryonic development and cell survival and maintenance of embryonic stem cell identity. Here, we report the structure of the human Paf1/Leo1 subcomplex within PAF1C. The overall structure reveals that the Paf1 and Leo1 subunits form a tightly associated heterodimer through antiparallel beta-sheet interactions. Detailed biochemical experiments indicate that Leo1 binds to PAF1C through Paf1 and that the Ctr9 subunit is the key scaffold protein in assembling PAF1C. Furthermore, we show that the Paf1/Leo1 heterodimer is necessary for its binding to histone H3, the histone octamer, and nucleosome in vitro. Our results shed light on the PAF1C assembly process and substrate recognition during various PAF1C-coordinated histone modifications. PMID:24038468

  7. Insights into the role and structure of plant ureases.

    PubMed

    Follmer, Cristian

    2008-01-01

    The broad distribution of ureases in leguminous seeds, as well as the accumulation pattern of the protein during seed maturation, are suggestive of an important physiological role for this enzyme. Since the isolation and characterization of jack bean urease by Sumner in 1926, many investigations have been dedicated to the structural and biological features of this enzyme; nevertheless, many questions still remain. It has been reported that ureases from plants (jack bean and soybean seeds) display biological properties unrelated to their ureolytic activity, notably a high insecticidal activity against Coleoptera (beetles) and Hemiptera (bugs), suggesting that ureases might be involved in plant defense. Besides the insecticidal activity, canatoxin, a jack bean urease isoform, causes convulsions and death in mice and rats, induces indirect hemagglutination (hemilectin activity) and promotes exocytosis in several cell types. Not only plant ureases but also some microbial ureases (found in Bacillus pasteurii and Helicobacter pylori) are able to induce activation of platelets in a process mediated by lipoxygenase-derived metabolites. This review summarizes the biological and structural properties of plant ureases, compares them with those displayed by bacterial ureases, and discusses the significance of these findings. PMID:17706733

  8. FRESH INSIGHTS ON THE STRUCTURE OF THE SOLAR CORE

    SciTech Connect

    Basu, Sarbani; Chaplin, William J.; Elsworth, Yvonne; New, Roger; Serenelli, Aldo M. E-mail: w.j.chaplin@bham.ac.uk E-mail: r.new@shu.ac.uk

    2009-07-10

    We present new results on the structure of the solar core, obtained with new sets of frequencies of solar low-degree p modes obtained from the BiSON network. We find that different methods used in extracting the different sets of frequencies cause shifts in frequencies, but the shifts are not large enough to affect solar structure results. We find that the BiSON frequencies show that the solar sound speed in the core is slightly larger than that inferred from data from Michelson Doppler Imager low-degree modes, and the uncertainties on the inversion results are smaller. Density results also change by a larger amount, and we find that solar models now tend to show smaller differences in density compared to the Sun. The result is seen at all radii, a result of the fact that conservation of mass implies that density differences in one region have to cancel out density differences in others, since our models are constructed to have the same mass as the Sun. The uncertainties on the density results are much smaller too. We attribute the change in results to having more, and lower frequency, low-degree mode frequencies available. These modes provide greater sensitivity to conditions in the core.

  9. Structural insights into the bacterial carbon-phosphorus lyase machinery

    PubMed Central

    Seweryn, Paulina; Van, Lan Bich; Kjeldgaard, Morten; Russo, Christopher J.; Passmore, Lori A.; Hove-Jensen, Bjarne; Jochimsen, Bjarne; Brodersen, Ditlev E.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Phosphorous is required for all life and microorganisms can extract it from their environment through several metabolic pathways. When phosphate is in limited supply, some bacteria are able to use organic phosphonate compounds, which require specialised enzymatic machinery for breaking the stable carbon-phosphorus (C-P) bond. Despite its importance, the details of how this machinery catabolises phosphonate remain unknown. Here we determine the crystal structure of the 240 kDa Escherichia coli C-P lyase core complex (PhnGHIJ) and show that it is a two-fold symmetric hetero-octamer comprising an intertwined network of subunits with unexpected self-homologies. It contains two potential active sites that likely couple organic phosphonate compounds to ATP and subsequently hydrolyse the C-P bond. We map the binding site of PhnK on the complex using electron microscopy and show that it binds to PhnJ via a conserved insertion domain. Our results provide a structural basis for understanding microbial phosphonate breakdown. PMID:26280334

  10. Structural insights into the catalytic mechanism of cyclophilin A.

    PubMed

    Howard, Bruce R; Vajdos, Felix F; Li, Su; Sundquist, Wesley I; Hill, Christopher P

    2003-06-01

    Cyclophilins constitute a ubiquitous protein family whose functions include protein folding, transport and signaling. They possess both sequence-specific binding and proline cis-trans isomerase activities, as exemplified by the interaction between cyclophilin A (CypA) and the HIV-1 CA protein. Here, we report crystal structures of CypA in complex with HIV-1 CA protein variants that bind preferentially with the substrate proline residue in either the cis or the trans conformation. Cis- and trans-Pro substrates are accommodated within the enzyme active site by rearrangement of their N-terminal residues and with minimal distortions in the path of the main chain. CypA Arg55 guanidinium group probably facilitates catalysis by anchoring the substrate proline oxygen and stabilizing sp3 hybridization of the proline nitrogen in the transition state. PMID:12730686

  11. Microscopic insight into the structure of gallium isotopes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Verma, Preeti; Sharma, Chetan; Singh, Suram; Bharti, Arun; Khosa, S. K.

    2012-07-01

    Projected Shell Model technique has been applied to odd-A71-81Ga nuclei with the deformed single-particle states generated by the standard Nilsson potential. Various nuclear structure quantities have been calculated with this technique and compared with the available experimental data in the present work. The known experimental data of the yrast bands in these nuclei are persuasively described and the band diagrams obtained for these nuclei show that the yrast bands in these odd-A Ga isotopes don't belong to the single intrinsic state only but also have multi-particle states. The back-bending in moment of inertia and the electric quadrupole transitions are also calculated.

  12. Highlight: Structural Insights into Nonribosomal Peptide Enzymatic Assembly Lines

    PubMed Central

    Koglin, Alexander

    2009-01-01

    Nonribosomal peptides have a variety of medicinal activities including activity as antibiotics, antitumor drugs, immunosuppressives, and toxins. Their biosynthesis on multimodular assembly lines as a series of covalently tethered thioesters, in turn covalently attached on pantetheinyl arms on carrier protein way stations, reflects similar chemical logic and protein machinery to fatty acid and polyketide biosynthesis. While structural information on excised or isolated catalytic adenylation (A), condensation (C), peptidyl carrier protein (PCP) and thioesterase (TE) domains had been gathered over the past decade, little was known about how the NRPS catalytic and carrier domains interact with each other both within and across elongation or termination modules. This highlight reviews recent breakthrough achievements in both X-ray and NMR spectroscopic studies that illuminate the architecture of NRPS PCP domains, PCP-containing didomain-fragments and of a full termination module (C-A-PCP-TE). PMID:19636447

  13. Dynamic insight into protein structure utilizing red edge excitation shift.

    PubMed

    Chattopadhyay, Amitabha; Haldar, Sourav

    2014-01-21

    Proteins are considered the workhorses in the cellular machinery. They are often organized in a highly ordered conformation in the crowded cellular environment. These conformations display characteristic dynamics over a range of time scales. An emerging consensus is that protein function is critically dependent on its dynamics. The subtle interplay between structure and dynamics is a hallmark of protein organization and is essential for its function. Depending on the environmental context, proteins can adopt a range of conformations such as native, molten globule, unfolded (denatured), and misfolded states. Although protein crystallography is a well established technique, it is not always possible to characterize various protein conformations by X-ray crystallography due to transient nature of these states. Even in cases where structural characterization is possible, the information obtained lacks dynamic component, which is needed to understand protein function. In this overall scenario, approaches that reveal information on protein dynamics are much appreciated. Dynamics of confined water has interesting implications in protein folding. Interfacial hydration combines the motion of water molecules with the slow moving protein molecules. The red edge excitation shift (REES) approach becomes relevant in this context. REES is defined as the shift in the wavelength of maximum fluorescence emission toward higher wavelengths, caused by a shift in the excitation wavelength toward the red edge of absorption spectrum. REES arises due to slow rates (relative to fluorescence lifetime) of solvent relaxation (reorientation) around an excited state fluorophore in organized assemblies such as proteins. Consequently, REES depends on the environment-induced motional restriction imposed on the solvent molecules in the immediate vicinity of the fluorophore. In the case of a protein, the confined water in the protein creates a dipolar field that acts as the solvent for a fluorophore

  14. Structural insights into the antigenicity of myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein

    PubMed Central

    Breithaupt, Constanze; Schubart, Anna; Zander, Hilke; Skerra, Arne; Huber, Robert; Linington, Christopher; Jacob, Uwe

    2003-01-01

    Multiple sclerosis is a chronic disease of the central nervous system (CNS) characterized by inflammation, demyelination, and axonal loss. The immunopathogenesis of demyelination in multiple sclerosis involves an autoantibody response to myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein (MOG), a type I transmembrane protein located at the surface of CNS myelin. Here we present the crystal structures of the extracellular domain of MOG (MOGIgd) at 1.45-Å resolution and the complex of MOGIgd with the antigen-binding fragment (Fab) of the MOG-specific demyelinating monoclonal antibody 8-18C5 at 3.0-Å resolution. MOGIgd adopts an IgV like fold with the A′GFCC′C″ sheet harboring a cavity similar to the one used by the costimulatory molecule B7-2 to bind its ligand CTLA4. The antibody 8-18C5 binds to three loops located at the membrane-distal side of MOG with a surprisingly dominant contribution made by MOG residues 101–108 containing a strained loop that forms the upper edge of the putative ligand binding site. The sequence R101DHSYQEE108 is unique for MOG, whereas large parts of the remaining sequence are conserved in potentially tolerogenic MOG homologues expressed outside the immuno-privileged environment of the CNS. Strikingly, the only sequence identical to DHSYQEE was found in a Chlamydia trachomatis protein of unknown function, raising the possibility that Chlamydia infections may play a role in the MOG-specific autoimmune response in man. Our data provide the structural basis for the development of diagnostic and therapeutic strategies targeting the pathogenic autoantibody response to MOG. PMID:12874380

  15. Increasing neonicotinoid use and the declining butterfly fauna of lowland California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Forister, Matthew L.; Cousens, Bruce; Harrison, Joshua G.; Anderson, Kayce; Thorne, James H.; Waetjen, Dave; Nice, Chris C.; De Parsia, Matthew; Hladik, Michelle L.; Meese, Robert; van Vliet, Heidi; Shapiro, Arthur M.

    2016-01-01

    The butterfly fauna of lowland Northern California has exhibited a marked decline in recent years that previous studies have attributed in part to altered climatic conditions and changes in land use. Here, we ask if a shift in insecticide use towards neonicotinoids is associated with butterfly declines at four sites in the region that have been monitored for four decades. A negative association between butterfly populations and increasing neonicotinoid application is detectable while controlling for land use and other factors, and appears to be more severe for smaller-bodied species. These results suggest that neonicotinoids could influence non-target insect populations occurring in proximity to application locations, and highlights the need for mechanistic work to complement long-term observational data.

  16. Increasing neonicotinoid use and the declining butterfly fauna of lowland California.

    PubMed

    Forister, Matthew L; Cousens, Bruce; Harrison, Joshua G; Anderson, Kayce; Thorne, James H; Waetjen, Dave; Nice, Chris C; De Parsia, Matthew; Hladik, Michelle L; Meese, Robert; van Vliet, Heidi; Shapiro, Arthur M

    2016-08-01

    The butterfly fauna of lowland Northern California has exhibited a marked decline in recent years that previous studies have attributed in part to altered climatic conditions and changes in land use. Here, we ask if a shift in insecticide use towards neonicotinoids is associated with butterfly declines at four sites in the region that have been monitored for four decades. A negative association between butterfly populations and increasing neonicotinoid application is detectable while controlling for land use and other factors, and appears to be more severe for smaller-bodied species. These results suggest that neonicotinoids could influence non-target insect populations occurring in proximity to application locations, and highlights the need for mechanistic work to complement long-term observational data. PMID:27531159

  17. Structural insight into magnetochrome-mediated magnetite biomineralization.

    PubMed

    Siponen, Marina I; Legrand, Pierre; Widdrat, Marc; Jones, Stephanie R; Zhang, Wei-Jia; Chang, Michelle C Y; Faivre, Damien; Arnoux, Pascal; Pignol, David

    2013-10-31

    Magnetotactic bacteria align along the Earth's magnetic field using an organelle called the magnetosome, a biomineralized magnetite (Fe(II)Fe(III)2O4) or greigite (Fe(II)Fe(III)2S4) crystal embedded in a lipid vesicle. Although the need for both iron(II) and iron(III) is clear, little is known about the biological mechanisms controlling their ratio. Here we present the structure of the magnetosome-associated protein MamP and find that it is built on a unique arrangement of a self-plugged PDZ domain fused to two magnetochrome domains, defining a new class of c-type cytochrome exclusively found in magnetotactic bacteria. Mutational analysis, enzyme kinetics, co-crystallization with iron(II) and an in vitro MamP-assisted magnetite production assay establish MamP as an iron oxidase that contributes to the formation of iron(III) ferrihydrite eventually required for magnetite crystal growth in vivo. These results demonstrate the molecular mechanisms of iron management taking place inside the magnetosome and highlight the role of magnetochrome in iron biomineralization. PMID:24097349

  18. Structural and Functional Insights into Endoglin Ligand Recognition and Binding

    PubMed Central

    Alt, Aaron; Miguel-Romero, Laura; Donderis, Jordi; Aristorena, Mikel; Blanco, Francisco J.; Round, Adam; Rubio, Vicente; Bernabeu, Carmelo; Marina, Alberto

    2012-01-01

    Endoglin, a type I membrane glycoprotein expressed as a disulfide-linked homodimer on human vascular endothelial cells, is a component of the transforming growth factor (TGF)-β receptor complex and is implicated in a dominant vascular dysplasia known as hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia as well as in preeclampsia. It interacts with the type I TGF-β signaling receptor activin receptor-like kinase (ALK)1 and modulates cellular responses to Bone Morphogenetic Protein (BMP)-9 and BMP-10. Structurally, besides carrying a zona pellucida (ZP) domain, endoglin contains at its N-terminal extracellular region a domain of unknown function and without homology to any other known protein, therefore called the orphan domain (OD). In this study, we have determined the recognition and binding ability of full length ALK1, endoglin and constructs encompassing the OD to BMP-9 using combined methods, consisting of surface plasmon resonance and cellular assays. ALK1 and endoglin ectodomains bind, independently of their glycosylation state and without cooperativity, to different sites of BMP-9. The OD comprising residues 22 to 337 was identified among the present constructs as the minimal active endoglin domain needed for partner recognition. These studies also pinpointed to Cys350 as being responsible for the dimerization of endoglin. In contrast to the complete endoglin ectodomain, the OD is a monomer and its small angle X-ray scattering characterization revealed a compact conformation in solution into which a de novo model was fitted. PMID:22347366

  19. Structural insight into magnetochrome-mediated magnetite biomineralization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Siponen, Marina I.; Legrand, Pierre; Widdrat, Marc; Jones, Stephanie R.; Zhang, Wei-Jia; Chang, Michelle C. Y.; Faivre, Damien; Arnoux, Pascal; Pignol, David

    2013-10-01

    Magnetotactic bacteria align along the Earth's magnetic field using an organelle called the magnetosome, a biomineralized magnetite (Fe(II)Fe(III)2O4) or greigite (Fe(II)Fe(III)2S4) crystal embedded in a lipid vesicle. Although the need for both iron(II) and iron(III) is clear, little is known about the biological mechanisms controlling their ratio. Here we present the structure of the magnetosome-associated protein MamP and find that it is built on a unique arrangement of a self-plugged PDZ domain fused to two magnetochrome domains, defining a new class of c-type cytochrome exclusively found in magnetotactic bacteria. Mutational analysis, enzyme kinetics, co-crystallization with iron(II) and an in vitro MamP-assisted magnetite production assay establish MamP as an iron oxidase that contributes to the formation of iron(III) ferrihydrite eventually required for magnetite crystal growth in vivo. These results demonstrate the molecular mechanisms of iron management taking place inside the magnetosome and highlight the role of magnetochrome in iron biomineralization.

  20. Structure of the Tongariro Volcanic system: Insights from magnetotelluric imaging

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hill, Graham J.; Bibby, Hugh M.; Ogawa, Yasuo; Wallin, Erin L.; Bennie, Stewart L.; Caldwell, T. Grant; Keys, Harry; Bertrand, Edward A.; Heise, Wiebke

    2015-12-01

    The dynamics of magma reservoirs (the main repositories for eruptible magma) play a fundamental role in the style and behaviour of volcanic systems. A key first step in understanding these systems is to identify their location and size accurately. We present results from a broadband magnetotelluric study of the Tongariro Volcanic system and discuss how the results fit within current petrological models. The Tongariro Volcanic system is a composite andesitic cone complex, located at the southern end of the Taupo Volcanic Zone in the central North Island of New Zealand. We use data from 136 broadband magnetotelluric soundings within a 25 × 35 km area covering the volcanic system to construct a 3D image of the magmatic system of the Tongariro Volcanic Complex including Mount Ngauruhoe. The structure of the Tongariro magmatic system has been determined from 3D forward and inverse modelling of the magnetotelluric data and allowed for an estimation of the melt fraction present within the system. 3D inverse modelling of the magnetotelluric data shows: a well-developed shallow low resistivity zone outlining the geothermal system; a zone of even lower resistivity representing a shallow crustal magma accumulation zone located at a depth of ˜4-12 km offset to the east of the Tongariro vent system; and a zone with a slightly higher resistivity connecting these two components of the magmatic system providing the path for magmatic fluids from the deeper source region to reach the surface during eruptive events.

  1. Structures and functions in the crowded nucleus: new biophysical insights

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hancock, Ronald

    2014-09-01

    Concepts and methods from the physical sciences have catalysed remarkable progress in understanding the cell nucleus in recent years. To share this excitement with physicists and encourage their interest in this field, this review offers an overview of how the physics which underlies structures and functions in the nucleus is becoming more clear thanks to methods which have been developed to simulate and study macromolecules, polymers, and colloids. The environment in the nucleus is very crowded with macromolecules, making entropic (depletion) forces major determinants of interactions. Simulation and experiments are consistent with their key role in forming membraneless compartments such as nucleoli, PML and Cajal bodies, and discrete "territories" for chromosomes. The chromosomes, giant linear polyelectrolyte polymers, exist in vivo in a state like a polymer melt. Looped conformations are predicted in crowded conditions, and have been confirmed experimentally and are central to the regulation of gene expression. Polymer theory has revealed how the chromosomes are so highly compacted in the nucleus, forming a "crumpled globule" with fractal properties which avoids knots and entanglements in DNA while allowing facile accessibility for its replication and transcription. Entropic repulsion between looped polymers can explain the confinement of each chromosome to a discrete region of the nucleus. Crowding and looping are predicted to facilitate finding the specific targets of factors which modulate activities of DNA. Simulation shows that entropic effects contribute to finding and repairing potentially lethal double-strand breaks in DNA by increasing the mobility of the broken ends, favouring their juxtaposition for repair. Signaling pathways are strongly influenced by crowding, which favours a processive mode of response (consecutive reactions without releasing substrates). This new information contributes to understanding the sometimes counter-intuitive consequences.

  2. New insights into F-pilus structure, dynamics, and function.

    PubMed

    Silverman, Philip M; Clarke, Margaret B

    2010-01-01

    F-pili are thin, flexible filaments elaborated by F(+) cells of Escherichia coli. They belong to the class of Gram-negative pili that function in horizontal gene transfer. F-pili are initially required to establish contacts between DNA donor and recipient cells. Beyond that, F-pilus function, and that of other conjugative pili, has remained obscure and controversial. The idea that F-pili are dynamic structures was proposed 40 years ago. Initially, F-pili were thought to remain extended until another cell bound to the filament tip, whereupon the filament retracted to bring the contacted cell to the donor cell surface. Thereafter, secure surface-surface contacts would allow efficient DNA transfer. A later variant of this hypothesis was that F-pili are inherently dynamic, elongating and retracting even in the absence of exogenous signals. A very different hypothesis, also proposed first about 40 years ago, was that F-pili are conduits, presumably passive, for the transfer of DNA from donor to recipient. In this hypothesis, DNA transfer is not obligatorily coupled to F-pilus retraction. Here, we review recent data obtained by integrating long-established facts about the biology of F-pili with modern tools of fluorescence and electron microscopy. These data suggest that one function for F-pili is to search a large volume around donor cells in liquid culture for the presence of other cells. However, this may not be the only function. We show that F-pilin is also required at a second, largely undefined step occurring after cells have been brought into direct contact by F-pilus retraction. PMID:20473409

  3. Neonicotinoid insecticides inhibit cholinergic neurotransmission in a molluscan (Lymnaea stagnalis) nervous system.

    PubMed

    Vehovszky, Á; Farkas, A; Ács, A; Stoliar, O; Székács, A; Mörtl, M; Győri, J

    2015-10-01

    Neonicotinoids are highly potent and selective systemic insecticides, but their widespread use also has a growing impact on non-target animals and contaminates the environment, including surface waters. We tested the neonicotinoid insecticides commercially available in Hungary (acetamiprid, Mospilan; imidacloprid, Kohinor; thiamethoxam, Actara; clothianidin, Apacs; thiacloprid, Calypso) on cholinergic synapses that exist between the VD4 and RPeD1 neurons in the central nervous system of the pond snail Lymnaea stagnalis. In the concentration range used (0.01-1 mg/ml), neither chemical acted as an acetylcholine (ACh) agonist; instead, both displayed antagonist activity, inhibiting the cholinergic excitatory components of the VD4-RPeD1 connection. Thiacloprid (0.01 mg/ml) blocked almost 90% of excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs), while the less effective thiamethoxam (0.1 mg/ml) reduced the synaptic responses by about 15%. The ACh-evoked membrane responses of the RPeD1 neuron were similarly inhibited by the neonicotinoids, confirming that the same ACh receptor (AChR) target was involved. We conclude that neonicotinoids act on nicotinergic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in the snail CNS. This has been established previously in the insect CNS; however, our data indicate differences in the background mechanism or the nAChR binding site in the snail. Here, we provide the first results concerning neonicotinoid-related toxic effects on the neuronal connections in the molluscan nervous system. Aquatic animals, including molluscs, are at direct risk while facing contaminated surface waters, and snails may provide a suitable model for further studies of the behavioral/neuronal consequences of intoxication by neonicotinoids. PMID:26340121

  4. Neonicotinoid pesticide exposure impairs crop pollination services provided by bumblebees

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stanley, Dara A.; Garratt, Michael P. D.; Wickens, Jennifer B.; Wickens, Victoria J.; Potts, Simon G.; Raine, Nigel E.

    2015-12-01

    Recent concern over global pollinator declines has led to considerable research on the effects of pesticides on bees. Although pesticides are typically not encountered at lethal levels in the field, there is growing evidence indicating that exposure to field-realistic levels can have sublethal effects on bees, affecting their foraging behaviour, homing ability and reproductive success. Bees are essential for the pollination of a wide variety of crops and the majority of wild flowering plants, but until now research on pesticide effects has been limited to direct effects on bees themselves and not on the pollination services they provide. Here we show the first evidence to our knowledge that pesticide exposure can reduce the pollination services bumblebees deliver to apples, a crop of global economic importance. Bumblebee colonies exposed to a neonicotinoid pesticide provided lower visitation rates to apple trees and collected pollen less often. Most importantly, these pesticide-exposed colonies produced apples containing fewer seeds, demonstrating a reduced delivery of pollination services. Our results also indicate that reduced pollination service delivery is not due to pesticide-induced changes in individual bee behaviour, but most likely due to effects at the colony level. These findings show that pesticide exposure can impair the ability of bees to provide pollination services, with important implications for both the sustained delivery of stable crop yields and the functioning of natural ecosystems.

  5. Photodegradation of neonicotinoid insecticides in water by semiconductor oxides.

    PubMed

    Fenoll, José; Garrido, Isabel; Hellín, Pilar; Flores, Pilar; Navarro, Simón

    2015-10-01

    The photocatalytic degradation of three neonicotinoid insecticides (NIs), thiamethoxam (TH), imidacloprid (IM) and acetamiprid (AC), in pure water has been studied using zinc oxide (ZnO) and titanium dioxide (TiO2) as photocatalysts under natural sunlight and artificial light irradiation. Photocatalytic experiments showed that the addition of these chalcogenide oxides in tandem with the electron acceptor (Na2S2O8) strongly enhances the degradation rate of these compounds in comparison with those carried out with ZnO and TiO2 alone and photolytic tests. Comparison of catalysts showed that ZnO is the most efficient for the removal of such insecticides in optimal conditions and at constant volumetric rate of photon absorption. Thus, the complete disappearance of all the studied compounds was achieved after 10 and 30 min of artificial light irradiation, in the ZnO/Na2S2O8 and TiO2/Na2S2O8 systems, respectively. The highest degradation rate was noticed for IM, while the lowest rate constant was obtained for AC under artificial light irradiation. In addition, solar irradiation was more efficient compared to artificial light for the removal of these insecticides from water. The main photocatalytic intermediates detected during the degradation of NIs were identified. PMID:26002372

  6. Neonicotinoid pesticide exposure impairs crop pollination services provided by bumblebees

    PubMed Central

    Stanley, Dara A.; Garratt, Michael P.D.; Wickens, Jennifer B.; Wickens, Victoria J.; Potts, Simon G.; Raine, Nigel E.

    2015-01-01

    Recent concern over global pollinator declines has led to considerable research on the effects of pesticides on bees1-5. Although pesticides are typically not encountered at lethal levels in the field, there is growing evidence indicating that exposure to field-realistic levels can have sub-lethal effects on bees affecting their foraging behaviour1,6,7, homing ability8,9 and reproductive success2,5. Bees are essential for the pollination of a wide variety of crops and the majority of wild flowering plants10-12, but until now research on pesticide impacts has been limited to direct effects on bees themselves and not on the pollination services they provide. Here we show the first evidence that pesticide exposure can reduce the pollination services bumblebees deliver to apples, a crop of global economic importance. Colonies exposed to a neonicotinoid pesticide provided lower visitation rates to apple trees and collected pollen less often. Most importantly these pesticide exposed colonies produced apples containing fewer seeds demonstrating a reduced delivery of pollination services. Our results also suggest reduced pollination service delivery is not due to pesticide-induced changes in individual bee behaviour but most likely due to impacts at the colony level. These findings show that pesticide exposure can impair the ability of bees to provide pollination services, with important implications for both the sustained delivery of stable crop yields and the function of natural ecosystems. PMID:26580009

  7. Insight into nucleon structure from lattice calculations of moments of parton and generalized parton distributions

    SciTech Connect

    J.W. Negele; R.C. Brower; P. Dreher; R. Edwards; G. Fleming; Ph. Hagler; U.M. Heller; Th. Lippert; A.V.Pochinsky; D.B. Renner; D. Richards; K. Schilling; W. Schroers

    2004-04-01

    This talk presents recent calculations in full QCD of the lowest three moments of generalized parton distributions and the insight they provide into the behavior of nucleon electromagnetic form factors, the origin of the nucleon spin, and the transverse structure of the nucleon. In addition, new exploratory calculations in the chiral regime of full QCD are discussed.

  8. The Manifest Association Structure of the Single-Factor Model: Insights from Partial Correlations

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Salgueiro, Maria de Fatima; Smith, Peter W. F.; McDonald, John W.

    2008-01-01

    The association structure between manifest variables arising from the single-factor model is investigated using partial correlations. The additional insights to the practitioner provided by partial correlations for detecting a single-factor model are discussed. The parameter space for the partial correlations is presented, as are the patterns of…

  9. Cognitive Structures of the Gifted: Theoretical Perspectives, Factor Analysis, Triarchic Theories of Intelligence, and Insight Issues.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shaughnessy, Michael F.

    The paper reviews research on the cognitive structures of gifted students. Theories of R. Sternberg and his triarchic model of intelligence are described. Sternberg asserts that three processes appear to account for insight: selective encoding, selective combination, and selective comparison. H. Gardner's perspective citing six types of…

  10. INSIGHTS ON SCRAPIE PRION PROTEIN (PrPSc) STRUCTURE OBTAINED BY LIMITED PROTEOLYSIS AND MASS SPECTROMETRY

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Elucidation of the structure of PrPSc, essential to understand the molecular mechanism of prion transmission, continues to be one of the major challenges in prion research, and is hampered by the insolubility and polymeric character of PrPSc. Limited proteolysis is a useful tool to obtain insight on...

  11. Structural and Mechanistic Insights into C-P Bond Hydrolysis by Phosphonoacetate Hydrolase

    SciTech Connect

    Agarwal, Vinayak; Borisova, Svetlana A.; Metcalf, William W.; van der Donk, Wilfred A.; Nair, Satish K.

    2011-12-22

    Bacteria have evolved pathways to metabolize phosphonates as a nutrient source for phosphorus. In Sinorhizobium meliloti 1021, 2-aminoethylphosphonate is catabolized to phosphonoacetate, which is converted to acetate and inorganic phosphate by phosphonoacetate hydrolase (PhnA). Here we present detailed biochemical and structural characterization of PhnA that provides insights into the mechanism of C-P bond cleavage. The 1.35 {angstrom} resolution crystal structure reveals a catalytic core similar to those of alkaline phosphatases and nucleotide pyrophosphatases but with notable differences, such as a longer metal-metal distance. Detailed structure-guided analysis of active site residues and four additional cocrystal structures with phosphonoacetate substrate, acetate, phosphonoformate inhibitor, and a covalently bound transition state mimic provide insight into active site features that may facilitate cleavage of the C-P bond. These studies expand upon the array of reactions that can be catalyzed by enzymes of the alkaline phosphatase superfamily.

  12. Insights into the serine protease mechanism from atomic resolution structures of trypsin reaction intermediates

    PubMed Central

    Radisky, Evette S.; Lee, Justin M.; Lu, Chia-Jung Karen; Koshland, Daniel E.

    2006-01-01

    Atomic resolution structures of trypsin acyl-enzymes and a tetrahedral intermediate analog, along with previously solved structures representing the Michaelis complex, are used to reconstruct events in the catalytic cycle of this classic serine protease. Structural comparisons provide insight into active site adjustments involved in catalysis. Subtle motions of the catalytic serine and histidine residues coordinated with translation of the substrate reaction center are seen to favor the forward progress of the acylation reaction. The structures also clarify the attack trajectory of the hydrolytic water in the deacylation reaction. PMID:16636277

  13. Functional, structural, and emotional correlates of impaired insight in cocaine addiction

    PubMed Central

    Moeller, Scott J.; Konova, Anna B.; Parvaz, Muhammad A.; Tomasi, Dardo; Lane, Richard D.; Fort, Carolyn; Goldstein, Rita Z.

    2014-01-01

    Context Individuals with cocaine use disorder (CUD) have difficulty monitoring ongoing behavior, possibly stemming from dysfunction of brain regions subserving insight and self-awareness [e.g., anterior cingulate cortex (ACC)]. Objective To test the hypothesis that CUD with impaired insight (iCUD) would show abnormal (A) ACC activity during error processing, assessed with functional magnetic resonance imaging during a classic inhibitory control task; (B) ACC gray matter integrity assessed with voxel-based morphometry; and (C) awareness of one’s own emotional experiences, assessed with the Levels of Emotional Awareness Scale (LEAS). Using a previously validated probabilistic choice task, we grouped 33 CUD according to insight [iCUD: N=15; unimpaired insight CUD: N=18]; we also studied 20 healthy controls, all with unimpaired insight. Design Multimodal imaging design. Setting Clinical Research Center at Brookhaven National Laboratory. Participants Thirty-three CUD and 20 healthy controls. Main Outcome Measure Functional magnetic resonance imaging, voxel-based morphometry, LEAS, and drug use variables. Results Compared with the other two study groups, iCUD showed lower (A) error-induced rostral ACC (rACC) activity as associated with more frequent cocaine use; (B) gray matter within the rACC; and (C) LEAS scores. Conclusions These results point to rACC functional and structural abnormalities, and diminished emotional awareness, in a subpopulation of CUD characterized by impaired insight. Because the rACC has been implicated in appraising the affective/motivational significance of errors and other types of self-referential processing, functional and structural abnormalities in this region could result in lessened concern (frequently ascribed to minimization and denial) about behavioral outcomes that could potentially culminate in increased drug use. Treatments targeting this CUD subgroup could focus on enhancing the salience of errors (e.g., lapses). PMID:24258223

  14. Reproductive parameters of Tetranychus urticae (Acari: Tetranychidae) affected by neonicotinoid insecticides.

    PubMed

    Barati, Reihaneh; Hejazi, Mir Jalil

    2015-08-01

    Two-spotted spider mite is a major pest of many agricultural and ornamental crops worldwide. Some reports have indicated that application of neonicotinoid insecticides may lead to increased fecundity of this pest. If this is found to be true, the use of these pesticides may cause an outbreak of spider mite populations. Sublethal effects of three neonicotinoids, namely thiacloprid, acetamiprid and thiamethoxam were studied on T. urticae adults at field recommended doses. The experiments were carried out using bean leaf pieces in plastic Petri dishes. The adult mites were treated using two methods: (1) drench application and (2) spraying of leaves with Potter Spray Tower. Our results indicated that all neonicotinoids tested increased T. urticae population. In both treatment methods, acetamiprid treated mites had the highest intrinsic rate of population increase (rm) and finite rate of population increase (λ); and the lowest mean generation time (T) and doubling time among the treatments. If similar results are obtained from greenhouse and field trials, the use of these insecticides requires necessary precautions such as avoiding repeated use of neonicotinoid insecticide for controlling insect pests. PMID:25912952

  15. Enantioselective absorption and transformation of a novel chiral neonicotinoid [(14)C]-cycloxaprid in rats.

    PubMed

    Wu, Chengchen; Huang, Lei; Tang, Shenghua; Li, Zhong; Ye, Qingfu

    2016-06-01

    Neonicotinoid pesticides caused hazardous effects on pollinators and aquatic ecosystem. The new developed chiral cis-neonicotinoid cycloxaprid(CYC) is a highly potent substitute for low toxicity to bees and high efficiency on target-insects, but little is known about the metabolic dynamics of racemic CYC and its 2 enantiomers(SR and RS) in animal models. In this study, chiral separation of (14)C-labeled racemic CYC was performed in high-performance liquid chromatography under optimal conditions. For the first time that the stereoselectivity of the chiral neonicotinoid insecticide CYC was exhibited in rats after single dose oral administration using (14)C-labeled isotope trace technique. Enantioselective behaviors of racemic CYC, SR and RS were observed in blood metabolism, tissue distribution and excretion. The major deposition of (14)C were found in liver, lung, kidney and heart. After 24 h, skin and fat showed a strong bioaccumulation effect, and total excreted urine and feces of CYC, SR and RS were 50.4%, 59.7% and 74.5%, respectively. Enantiomer RS had the fastest absorption and elimination rates, and it was least bioaccumulated in rats. The results provide scientific basis and practical techniques for environmental risk assessment of chiral pesticides, especially neonicotinoids. PMID:27038208

  16. Neonicotinoid insecticide interact with honeybee odorant-binding protein: Implication for olfactory dysfunction.

    PubMed

    Li, Hongliang; Wu, Fan; Zhao, Lei; Tan, Jing; Jiang, Hongtao; Hu, Fuliang

    2015-11-01

    The decline of bee population has caused great concern in recent years. A noticeable factor points to the neonicotinoid insecticides, which remain in the nectar and pollen of plants and impair the olfactory cognition of foraging bees. However, it remains elusive that if and how neonicotinoid insecticides interact with the olfactory system of bees. Herein, we studied the binding interaction between neonicotinoid imidacloprid and ASP2, one odorant-binding protein in eastern bees, Apis cerana, by multispectroscopic methods. The results indicate that imidacloprid significantly quenched the intrinsic fluorescence of ASP2 as the static quenching mode, and expanded the conformation of ASP2 measured by the circular dichroism (CD) spectra. The acting force is mainly driven by hydrophobic force based on thermodynamic analysis. Docking analysis predicts a formation of a hydrogen bond, while the corresponding site-directed mutagenesis indicated that the hydrogen bond is not main force here. Moreover, imidacloprid with a sublethal dose (0.8ng/bee) clearly decreased the binding affinity of ASP2 to a floral volatile, β-ionone, which had been identified to strongly bind with the wild ASP2 before. This study may benefit to evaluate the effect of neonicotinoid insecticides on the olfactory cognitive behavior of bees involved in the crops pollination. PMID:26318218

  17. Neonicotinoids target distinct nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and neurons, leading to differential risks to bumblebees

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moffat, Christopher; Buckland, Stephen T.; Samson, Andrew J.; McArthur, Robin; Chamosa Pino, Victor; Bollan, Karen A.; Huang, Jeffrey T.-J.; Connolly, Christopher N.

    2016-04-01

    There is growing concern over the risk to bee populations from neonicotinoid insecticides and the long-term consequences of reduced numbers of insect pollinators to essential ecosystem services and food security. Our knowledge of the risk of neonicotinoids to bees is based on studies of imidacloprid and thiamethoxam and these findings are extrapolated to clothianidin based on its higher potency at nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. This study addresses the specificity and consequences of all three neonicotinoids to determine their relative risk to bumblebees at field-relevant levels (2.5 ppb). We find compound-specific effects at all levels (individual cells, bees and whole colonies in semi-field conditions). Imidacloprid and clothianidin display distinct, overlapping, abilities to stimulate Kenyon cells, indicating the potential to differentially influence bumblebee behavior. Bee immobility was induced only by imidacloprid, and an increased vulnerability to clothianidin toxicity only occurred following chronic exposure to clothianidin or thiamethoxam. At the whole colony level, only thiamethoxam altered the sex ratio (more males present) and only clothianidin increased queen production. Finally, both imidacloprid and thiamethoxam caused deficits in colony strength, while no detrimental effects of clothianidin were observed. Given these findings, neonicotinoid risk needs to be considered independently for each compound and target species.

  18. Neonicotinoids target distinct nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and neurons, leading to differential risks to bumblebees.

    PubMed

    Moffat, Christopher; Buckland, Stephen T; Samson, Andrew J; McArthur, Robin; Chamosa Pino, Victor; Bollan, Karen A; Huang, Jeffrey T-J; Connolly, Christopher N

    2016-01-01

    There is growing concern over the risk to bee populations from neonicotinoid insecticides and the long-term consequences of reduced numbers of insect pollinators to essential ecosystem services and food security. Our knowledge of the risk of neonicotinoids to bees is based on studies of imidacloprid and thiamethoxam and these findings are extrapolated to clothianidin based on its higher potency at nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. This study addresses the specificity and consequences of all three neonicotinoids to determine their relative risk to bumblebees at field-relevant levels (2.5 ppb). We find compound-specific effects at all levels (individual cells, bees and whole colonies in semi-field conditions). Imidacloprid and clothianidin display distinct, overlapping, abilities to stimulate Kenyon cells, indicating the potential to differentially influence bumblebee behavior. Bee immobility was induced only by imidacloprid, and an increased vulnerability to clothianidin toxicity only occurred following chronic exposure to clothianidin or thiamethoxam. At the whole colony level, only thiamethoxam altered the sex ratio (more males present) and only clothianidin increased queen production. Finally, both imidacloprid and thiamethoxam caused deficits in colony strength, while no detrimental effects of clothianidin were observed. Given these findings, neonicotinoid risk needs to be considered independently for each compound and target species. PMID:27124107

  19. Effects of Neonicotinoids and Crop Rotation for Managing Wireworms in Wheat Crops.

    PubMed

    Esser, Aaron D; Milosavljević, Ivan; Crowder, David W

    2015-08-01

    Soil-dwelling insects are severe pests in many agroecosystems. These pests have cryptic life cycles, making sampling difficult and damage hard to anticipate. The management of soil insects is therefore often based on preventative insecticides applied at planting or cultural practices. Wireworms, the subterranean larvae of click beetles (Coleoptera: Elateridae), have re-emerged as problematic pests in cereal crops in the Pacific Northwestern United States. Here, we evaluated two management strategies for wireworms in long-term field experiments: 1) treating spring wheat seed with the neonicotinoid thiamethoxam and 2) replacing continuous spring wheat with a summer fallow and winter wheat rotation. Separate experiments were conducted for two wireworm species--Limonius californicus (Mannerheim) and Limonius infuscatus (Motschulsky). In the experiment with L. californicus, spring wheat yields and economic returns increased by 24-30% with neonicotinoid treatments. In contrast, in the experiment with L. infuscatus, spring wheat yields and economic returns did not increase with neonicotinoids despite an 80% reduction in wireworms. Thus, the usefulness of seed-applied neonicotinoids differed based on the wireworm species present. In experiments with both species, we detected significantly fewer wireworms with a no-till summer fallow and winter wheat rotation compared with continuous spring wheat. This suggests that switching from continuous spring wheat to a winter wheat and summer fallow rotation may aid in wireworm management. More generally, our results show that integrated management of soil-dwelling pests such as wireworms may require both preventative insecticide treatments and cultural practices. PMID:26470320

  20. Chronic exposure to neonicotinoids increases neuronal vulnerability to mitochondrial dysfunction in the bumblebee (Bombus terrestris)

    PubMed Central

    Moffat, Christopher; Pacheco, Joao Goncalves; Sharp, Sheila; Samson, Andrew J.; Bollan, Karen A.; Huang, Jeffrey; Buckland, Stephen T.; Connolly, Christopher N.

    2015-01-01

    The global decline in the abundance and diversity of insect pollinators could result from habitat loss, disease, and pesticide exposure. The contribution of the neonicotinoid insecticides (e.g., clothianidin and imidacloprid) to this decline is controversial, and key to understanding their risk is whether the astonishingly low levels found in the nectar and pollen of plants is sufficient to deliver neuroactive levels to their site of action: the bee brain. Here we show that bumblebees (Bombus terrestris audax) fed field levels [10 nM, 2.1 ppb (w/w)] of neonicotinoid accumulate between 4 and 10 nM in their brains within 3 days. Acute (minutes) exposure of cultured neurons to 10 nM clothianidin, but not imidacloprid, causes a nicotinic acetylcholine receptor-dependent rapid mitochondrial depolarization. However, a chronic (2 days) exposure to 1 nM imidacloprid leads to a receptor-dependent increased sensitivity to a normally innocuous level of acetylcholine, which now also causes rapid mitochondrial depolarization in neurons. Finally, colonies exposed to this level of imidacloprid show deficits in colony growth and nest condition compared with untreated colonies. These findings provide a mechanistic explanation for the poor navigation and foraging observed in neonicotinoid treated bumblebee colonies.—Moffat, C., Pacheco, J. G., Sharp, S., Samson, A. J., Bollan, K. A., Huang, J., Buckland, S. T., Connolly, C. N. Chronic exposure to neonicotinoids increases neuronal vulnerability to mitochondrial dysfunction in the bumblebee (Bombus terrestris). PMID:25634958

  1. Neonicotinoids target distinct nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and neurons, leading to differential risks to bumblebees

    PubMed Central

    Moffat, Christopher; Buckland, Stephen T.; Samson, Andrew J.; McArthur, Robin; Chamosa Pino, Victor; Bollan, Karen A.; Huang, Jeffrey T.-J.; Connolly, Christopher N.

    2016-01-01

    There is growing concern over the risk to bee populations from neonicotinoid insecticides and the long-term consequences of reduced numbers of insect pollinators to essential ecosystem services and food security. Our knowledge of the risk of neonicotinoids to bees is based on studies of imidacloprid and thiamethoxam and these findings are extrapolated to clothianidin based on its higher potency at nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. This study addresses the specificity and consequences of all three neonicotinoids to determine their relative risk to bumblebees at field-relevant levels (2.5 ppb). We find compound-specific effects at all levels (individual cells, bees and whole colonies in semi-field conditions). Imidacloprid and clothianidin display distinct, overlapping, abilities to stimulate Kenyon cells, indicating the potential to differentially influence bumblebee behavior. Bee immobility was induced only by imidacloprid, and an increased vulnerability to clothianidin toxicity only occurred following chronic exposure to clothianidin or thiamethoxam. At the whole colony level, only thiamethoxam altered the sex ratio (more males present) and only clothianidin increased queen production. Finally, both imidacloprid and thiamethoxam caused deficits in colony strength, while no detrimental effects of clothianidin were observed. Given these findings, neonicotinoid risk needs to be considered independently for each compound and target species. PMID:27124107

  2. Neonicotinoid Residues in Wildflowers, a Potential Route of Chronic Exposure for Bees.

    PubMed

    Botías, Cristina; David, Arthur; Horwood, Julia; Abdul-Sada, Alaa; Nicholls, Elizabeth; Hill, Elizabeth; Goulson, Dave

    2015-11-01

    In recent years, an intense debate about the environmental risks posed by neonicotinoids, a group of widely used, neurotoxic insecticides, has been joined. When these systemic compounds are applied to seeds, low concentrations are subsequently found in the nectar and pollen of the crop, which are then collected and consumed by bees. Here we demonstrate that the current focus on exposure to pesticides via the crop overlooks an important factor: throughout spring and summer, mixtures of neonicotinoids are also found in the pollen and nectar of wildflowers growing in arable field margins, at concentrations that are sometimes even higher than those found in the crop. Indeed, the large majority (97%) of neonicotinoids brought back in pollen to honey bee hives in arable landscapes was from wildflowers, not crops. Both previous and ongoing field studies have been based on the premise that exposure to neonicotinoids would occur only during the blooming period of flowering crops and that it may be diluted by bees also foraging on untreated wildflowers. Here, we show that exposure is likely to be higher and more prolonged than currently recognized because of widespread contamination of wild plants growing near treated crops. PMID:26439915

  3. The neonicotinoids thiacloprid, imidacloprid, and clothianidin affect the immunocompetence of honey bees (Apis mellifera L.).

    PubMed

    Brandt, Annely; Gorenflo, Anna; Siede, Reinhold; Meixner, Marina; Büchler, Ralph

    2016-03-01

    A strong immune defense is vital for honey bee health and colony survival. This defense can be weakened by environmental factors that may render honey bees more vulnerable to parasites and pathogens. Honey bees are frequently exposed to neonicotinoid pesticides, which are being discussed as one of the stress factors that may lead to colony failure. We investigated the sublethal effects of the neonicotinoids thiacloprid, imidacloprid, and clothianidin on individual immunity, by studying three major aspects of immunocompetence in worker bees: total hemocyte number, encapsulation response, and antimicrobial activity of the hemolymph. In laboratory experiments, we found a strong impact of all three neonicotinoids. Thiacloprid (24h oral exposure, 200 μg/l or 2000 μg/l) and imidacloprid (1 μg/l or 10 μg/l) reduced hemocyte density, encapsulation response, and antimicrobial activity even at field realistic concentrations. Clothianidin had an effect on these immune parameters only at higher than field realistic concentrations (50-200 μg/l). These results suggest that neonicotinoids affect the individual immunocompetence of honey bees, possibly leading to an impaired disease resistance capacity. PMID:26776096

  4. Compatibility of Two Systematic Neonicotinoids, Imidacloprid and Thiamethoxam with various Natural Enemies of Agricultural Pests.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Two systemic neonicotinoids, imidacloprid and thiamethoxam, are widely used for residual control of a number of insect pests in cotton, vegetables, and citrus. We evaluated their impact on six species of beneficial arthropods including four parasitoid species, Aphytis melinus Gonatocerus ashmeadi, ...

  5. A LABORATORY BIOASSAY FOR MONITORING RESISTANCE IN TARNISHED PLANT BUG POPULATIONS TO NEONICOTINOID INSECTICIDES

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A laboratory bioassay was developed for testing tarnished plant bug populations for resistance development to the neonicotinoid insecticides imidacloprid and thiamethoxam. The bioassay allows for the determination of LC50 values by feeding known doses of the insecticides to adult tarnished plant bu...

  6. Structural insights into the architecture of the hyperthermophilic Fusellovirus SSV1.

    PubMed

    Stedman, Kenneth M; DeYoung, Melissa; Saha, Mitul; Sherman, Michael B; Morais, Marc C

    2015-01-01

    The structure and assembly of many icosahedral and helical viruses are well-characterized. However, the molecular basis for the unique spindle-shaped morphology of many viruses that infect Archaea remains unknown. To understand the architecture and assembly of these viruses, the spindle-shaped virus SSV1 was examined using cryo-EM, providing the first 3D-structure of a spindle-shaped virus as well as insight into SSV1 biology, assembly and evolution. Furthermore, a geometric framework underlying the distinct spindle-shaped structure is proposed. PMID:25463608

  7. Neonicotinoid contamination of global surface waters and associated risk to aquatic invertebrates: a review.

    PubMed

    Morrissey, Christy A; Mineau, Pierre; Devries, James H; Sanchez-Bayo, Francisco; Liess, Matthias; Cavallaro, Michael C; Liber, Karsten

    2015-01-01

    Neonicotinoids, broad-spectrum systemic insecticides, are the fastest growing class of insecticides worldwide and are now registered for use on hundreds of field crops in over 120 different countries. The environmental profile of this class of pesticides indicate that they are persistent, have high leaching and runoff potential, and are highly toxic to a wide range of invertebrates. Therefore, neonicotinoids represent a significant risk to surface waters and the diverse aquatic and terrestrial fauna that these ecosystems support. This review synthesizes the current state of knowledge on the reported concentrations of neonicotinoids in surface waters from 29 studies in 9 countries world-wide in tandem with published data on their acute and chronic toxicity to 49 species of aquatic insects and crustaceans spanning 12 invertebrate orders. Strong evidence exists that water-borne neonicotinoid exposures are frequent, long-term and at levels (geometric means=0.13μg/L (averages) and 0.63μg/L (maxima)) which commonly exceed several existing water quality guidelines. Imidacloprid is by far the most widely studied neonicotinoid (66% of the 214 toxicity tests reviewed) with differences in sensitivity among aquatic invertebrate species ranging several orders of magnitude; other neonicotinoids display analogous modes of action and similar toxicities, although comparative data are limited. Of the species evaluated, insects belonging to the orders Ephemeroptera, Trichoptera and Diptera appear to be the most sensitive, while those of Crustacea (although not universally so) are less sensitive. In particular, the standard test species Daphnia magna appears to be very tolerant, with 24-96hour LC50 values exceeding 100,000μg/L (geometric mean>44,000μg/L), which is at least 2-3 orders of magnitude higher than the geometric mean of all other invertebrate species tested. Overall, neonicotinoids can exert adverse effects on survival, growth, emergence, mobility, and behavior of many

  8. Neonicotinoid-contaminated puddles of water represent a risk of intoxication for honey bees.

    PubMed

    Samson-Robert, Olivier; Labrie, Geneviève; Chagnon, Madeleine; Fournier, Valérie

    2014-01-01

    In recent years, populations of honey bees and other pollinators have been reported to be in decline worldwide. A number of stressors have been identified as potential contributing factors, including the extensive prophylactic use of neonicotinoid insecticides, which are highly toxic to bees, in agriculture. While multiple routes of exposure to these systemic insecticides have been documented for honey bees, contamination from puddle water has not been investigated. In this study, we used a multi-residue method based on LC-MS/MS to analyze samples of puddle water taken in the field during the planting of treated corn and one month later. If honey bees were to collect and drink water from these puddles, our results showed that they would be exposed to various agricultural pesticides. All water samples collected from corn fields were contaminated with at least one neonicotinoid compound, although most contained more than one systemic insecticide. Concentrations of neonicotinoids were higher in early spring, indicating that emission and drifting of contaminated dust during sowing raises contamination levels of puddles. Although the overall average acute risk of drinking water from puddles was relatively low, concentrations of neonicotinoids ranged from 0.01 to 63 µg/L and were sufficient to potentially elicit a wide array of sublethal effects in individuals and colony alike. Our results also suggest that risk assessment of honey bee water resources underestimates the foragers' exposure and consequently miscalculates the risk. In fact, our data shows that honey bees and native pollinators are facing unprecedented cumulative exposure to these insecticides from combined residues in pollen, nectar and water. These findings not only document the impact of this route of exposure for honey bees, they also have implications for the cultivation of a wide variety of crops for which the extensive use of neonicotinoids is currently promoted. PMID:25438051

  9. Monitoring changes in Bemisia tabaci (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) susceptibility to neonicotinoid insecticides in Arizona and California.

    PubMed

    Castle, S J; Prabhaker, N

    2013-06-01

    Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius) biotype B is a highly prolific and polyphagous whitefly that established in much of North America during the 1980s. Neonicotinoid insecticides have been fundamental in regaining control over outbreak populations of B. tabaci, but resistance threatens their sustainability. Susceptibility of B. tabaci in the southwestern United States to four neonicotinoid insecticides varied considerably across populations within each year over a 3 yr period. Using a variability ratio of highest LC50 to lowest LC50 in field-collected whitefly adults from Arizona and California, the ranges of LC50(s) across all tests within compounds were highest to imidacloprid and lowest to thiamethoxam. Patterns of susceptibility were similar among all four neonicotinoid insecticides, but the greater variability in responses to imidacloprid and significantly higher LC50(s) attained indicated higher resistance levels to imidacloprid in all field populations. Further evidence of differential toxicities of neonicotinoids was observed in multiple tests of dinotefuran against imidacloprid-resistant lab strains that yielded significant differences in the LC50(s) of dinotefuran and imidacloprid in simultaneous bioassays. To test the possibility that resistance expression in field-collected insects was sometimes masked by stressful conditions, field strains cultured in a greenhouse without insecticide exposure produced significantly higher LC50(s) to all neonicotinoids compared with LC50(s) attained directly from the field. In harsh climates such as the American southwest, resistance expression in field-collected test insects may be strongly influenced by environmental stresses such as high temperatures, overcrowding, and declining host plant quality. PMID:23865208

  10. Insect nicotinic receptor interactions in vivo with neonicotinoid, organophosphorus, and methylcarbamate insecticides and a synergist

    PubMed Central

    Shao, Xusheng; Xia, Shanshan; Durkin, Kathleen A.; Casida, John E.

    2013-01-01

    The nicotinic acetylcholine (ACh) receptor (nAChR) is the principal insecticide target. Nearly half of the insecticides by number and world market value are neonicotinoids acting as nAChR agonists or organophosphorus (OP) and methylcarbamate (MC) acetylcholinesterase (AChE) inhibitors. There was no previous evidence for in vivo interactions of the nAChR agonists and AChE inhibitors. The nitromethyleneimidazole (NMI) analog of imidacloprid, a highly potent neonicotinoid, was used here as a radioligand, uniquely allowing for direct measurements of house fly (Musca domestica) head nAChR in vivo interactions with various nicotinic agents. Nine neonicotinoids inhibited house fly brain nAChR [3H]NMI binding in vivo, corresponding to their in vitro potency and the poisoning signs or toxicity they produced in intrathoracically treated house flies. Interestingly, nine topically applied OP or MC insecticides or analogs also gave similar results relative to in vivo nAChR binding inhibition and toxicity, but now also correlating with in vivo brain AChE inhibition, indicating that ACh is the ultimate OP- or MC-induced nAChR active agent. These findings on [3H]NMI binding in house fly brain membranes validate the nAChR in vivo target for the neonicotinoids, OPs and MCs. As an exception, the remarkably potent OP neonicotinoid synergist, O-propyl O-(2-propynyl) phenylphosphonate, inhibited nAChR in vivo without the corresponding AChE inhibition, possibly via a reactive ketene metabolite reacting with a critical nucleophile in the cytochrome P450 active site and the nAChR NMI binding site. PMID:24108354

  11. Neonicotinoid-Contaminated Puddles of Water Represent a Risk of Intoxication for Honey Bees

    PubMed Central

    Samson-Robert, Olivier; Labrie, Geneviève; Chagnon, Madeleine; Fournier, Valérie

    2014-01-01

    In recent years, populations of honey bees and other pollinators have been reported to be in decline worldwide. A number of stressors have been identified as potential contributing factors, including the extensive prophylactic use of neonicotinoid insecticides, which are highly toxic to bees, in agriculture. While multiple routes of exposure to these systemic insecticides have been documented for honey bees, contamination from puddle water has not been investigated. In this study, we used a multi-residue method based on LC-MS/MS to analyze samples of puddle water taken in the field during the planting of treated corn and one month later. If honey bees were to collect and drink water from these puddles, our results showed that they would be exposed to various agricultural pesticides. All water samples collected from corn fields were contaminated with at least one neonicotinoid compound, although most contained more than one systemic insecticide. Concentrations of neonicotinoids were higher in early spring, indicating that emission and drifting of contaminated dust during sowing raises contamination levels of puddles. Although the overall average acute risk of drinking water from puddles was relatively low, concentrations of neonicotinoids ranged from 0.01 to 63 µg/L and were sufficient to potentially elicit a wide array of sublethal effects in individuals and colony alike. Our results also suggest that risk assessment of honey bee water resources underestimates the foragers' exposure and consequently miscalculates the risk. In fact, our data shows that honey bees and native pollinators are facing unprecedented cumulative exposure to these insecticides from combined residues in pollen, nectar and water. These findings not only document the impact of this route of exposure for honey bees, they also have implications for the cultivation of a wide variety of crops for which the extensive use of neonicotinoids is currently promoted. PMID:25438051

  12. Atomic Force Microscopy in Microbiology: New Structural and Functional Insights into the Microbial Cell Surface

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT Microbial cells sense and respond to their environment using their surface constituents. Therefore, understanding the assembly and biophysical properties of cell surface molecules is an important research topic. With its ability to observe living microbial cells at nanometer resolution and to manipulate single-cell surface molecules, atomic force microscopy (AFM) has emerged as a powerful tool in microbiology. Here, we survey major breakthroughs made in cell surface microbiology using AFM techniques, emphasizing the most recent structural and functional insights. PMID:25053785

  13. Neonicotinoid Insecticides and Their Impacts on Bees: A Systematic Review of Research Approaches and Identification of Knowledge Gaps.

    PubMed

    Lundin, Ola; Rundlöf, Maj; Smith, Henrik G; Fries, Ingemar; Bommarco, Riccardo

    2015-01-01

    It has been suggested that the widespread use of neonicotinoid insecticides threatens bees, but research on this topic has been surrounded by controversy. In order to synthesize which research approaches have been used to examine the effect of neonicotinoids on bees and to identify knowledge gaps, we systematically reviewed research on this subject that was available on the Web of Science and PubMed in June 2015. Most of the 216 primary research studies were conducted in Europe or North America (82%), involved the neonicotinoid imidacloprid (78%), and concerned the western honey bee Apis mellifera (75%). Thus, little seems to be known about neonicotinoids and bees in areas outside Europe and North America. Furthermore, because there is considerable variation in ecological traits among bee taxa, studies on honey bees are not likely to fully predict impacts of neonicotinoids on other species. Studies on crops were dominated by seed-treated maize, oilseed rape (canola) and sunflower, whereas less is known about potential side effects on bees from the use of other application methods on insect pollinated fruit and vegetable crops, or on lawns and ornamental plants. Laboratory approaches were most common, and we suggest that their capability to infer real-world consequences are improved when combined with information from field studies about realistic exposures to neonicotinoids. Studies using field approaches often examined only bee exposure to neonicotinoids and more field studies are needed that measure impacts of exposure. Most studies measured effects on individual bees. We suggest that effects on the individual bee should be linked to both mechanisms at the sub-individual level and also to the consequences for the colony and wider bee populations. As bees are increasingly facing multiple interacting pressures future research needs to clarify the role of neonicotinoids in relative to other drivers of bee declines. PMID:26313444

  14. Neonicotinoid Insecticides and Their Impacts on Bees: A Systematic Review of Research Approaches and Identification of Knowledge Gaps

    PubMed Central

    Lundin, Ola; Rundlöf, Maj; Smith, Henrik G.; Fries, Ingemar; Bommarco, Riccardo

    2015-01-01

    It has been suggested that the widespread use of neonicotinoid insecticides threatens bees, but research on this topic has been surrounded by controversy. In order to synthesize which research approaches have been used to examine the effect of neonicotinoids on bees and to identify knowledge gaps, we systematically reviewed research on this subject that was available on the Web of Science and PubMed in June 2015. Most of the 216 primary research studies were conducted in Europe or North America (82%), involved the neonicotinoid imidacloprid (78%), and concerned the western honey bee Apis mellifera (75%). Thus, little seems to be known about neonicotinoids and bees in areas outside Europe and North America. Furthermore, because there is considerable variation in ecological traits among bee taxa, studies on honey bees are not likely to fully predict impacts of neonicotinoids on other species. Studies on crops were dominated by seed-treated maize, oilseed rape (canola) and sunflower, whereas less is known about potential side effects on bees from the use of other application methods on insect pollinated fruit and vegetable crops, or on lawns and ornamental plants. Laboratory approaches were most common, and we suggest that their capability to infer real-world consequences are improved when combined with information from field studies about realistic exposures to neonicotinoids. Studies using field approaches often examined only bee exposure to neonicotinoids and more field studies are needed that measure impacts of exposure. Most studies measured effects on individual bees. We suggest that effects on the individual bee should be linked to both mechanisms at the sub-individual level and also to the consequences for the colony and wider bee populations. As bees are increasingly facing multiple interacting pressures future research needs to clarify the role of neonicotinoids in relative to other drivers of bee declines. PMID:26313444

  15. Structural Insights into Intermediate Steps in the Sir2 Deacetylation Reaction

    SciTech Connect

    Hawse, William F.; Hoff, Kevin G.; Fatkins, David G.; Daines, Alison; Zubkova, Olga V.; Schramm, Vern L.; Zheng, Weiping; Wolberger, Cynthia

    2010-07-22

    Sirtuin enzymes comprise a unique class of NAD{sup +}-dependent protein deacetylases. Although structures of many sirtuin complexes have been determined, structural resolution of intermediate chemical steps are needed to understand the deacetylation mechanism. We report crystal structures of the bacterial sirtuin, Sir2Tm, in complex with an S-alkylamidate intermediate, analogous to the naturally occurring O-alkylamidate intermediate, and a Sir2Tm ternary complex containing a dissociated NAD{sup +} analog and acetylated peptide. The structures and biochemical studies reveal critical roles for the invariant active site histidine in positioning the reaction intermediate, and for a conserved phenylalanine residue in shielding reaction intermediates from base exchange with nicotinamide. The new structural and biochemical studies provide key mechanistic insight into intermediate steps of the Sir2 deacetylation reaction.

  16. Neonicotinoids impact bumblebee colony fitness in the field; a reanalysis of the UK's Food & Environment Research Agency 2012 experiment.

    PubMed

    Goulson, Dave

    2015-01-01

    The causes of bee declines remain hotly debated, particularly the contribution of neonicotinoid insecticides. In 2013 the UK's Food & Environment Research Agency made public a study of the impacts of exposure of bumblebee colonies to neonicotinoids. The study concluded that there was no clear relationship between colony performance and pesticide exposure, and the study was subsequently cited by the UK government in a policy paper in support of their vote against a proposed moratorium on some uses of neonicotinoids. Here I present a simple re-analysis of this data set. It demonstrates that these data in fact do show a negative relationship between both colony growth and queen production and the levels of neonicotinoids in the food stores collected by the bees. Indeed, this is the first study describing substantial negative impacts of neonicotinoids on colony performance of any bee species with free-flying bees in a field realistic situation where pesticide exposure is provided only as part of normal farming practices. It strongly suggests that wild bumblebee colonies in farmland can be expected to be adversely affected by exposure to neonicotinoids. PMID:25825679

  17. Atom by atom: HRTEM insights into inorganic nanotubes and fullerene-like structures

    PubMed Central

    Sadan, Maya Bar; Houben, Lothar; Enyashin, Andrey N.; Seifert, Gotthard; Tenne, Reshef

    2008-01-01

    The characterization of nanostructures down to the atomic scale is essential to understand some physical properties. Such a characterization is possible today using direct imaging methods such as aberration-corrected high-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM), when iteratively backed by advanced modeling produced by theoretical structure calculations and image calculations. Aberration-corrected HRTEM is therefore extremely useful for investigating low-dimensional structures, such as inorganic fullerene-like particles and inorganic nanotubes. The atomic arrangement in these nanostructures can lead to new insights into the growth mechanism or physical properties, where imminent commercial applications are unfolding. This article will focus on two structures that are symmetric and reproducible. The first structure that will be dealt with is the smallest stable symmetric closed-cage structure in the inorganic system, a MoS2 nanooctahedron. It is investigated by means of aberration-corrected microscopy which allowed validating the suggested DFTB-MD model. It will be shown that structures diverging from the energetically most stable structures are present in the laser ablated soot and that the alignment of the different shells is parallel, unlike the bulk material where the alignment is antiparallel. These findings correspond well with the high-energy synthetic route and they provide more insight into the growth mechanism. The second structure studied is WS2 nanotubes, which have already been shown to have a unique structure with very desirable mechanical properties. The joint HRTEM study combined with modeling reveals new information regarding the chirality of the different shells and provides a better understanding of their growth mechanism. PMID:18838681

  18. Crystal structure of glycogen debranching enzyme and insights into its catalysis and disease-causing mutations

    PubMed Central

    Zhai, Liting; Feng, Lingling; Xia, Lin; Yin, Huiyong; Xiang, Song

    2016-01-01

    Glycogen is a branched glucose polymer and serves as an important energy store. Its debranching is a critical step in its mobilization. In animals and fungi, the 170 kDa glycogen debranching enzyme (GDE) catalyses this reaction. GDE deficiencies in humans are associated with severe diseases collectively termed glycogen storage disease type III (GSDIII). We report crystal structures of GDE and its complex with oligosaccharides, and structure-guided mutagenesis and biochemical studies to assess the structural observations. These studies reveal that distinct domains in GDE catalyse sequential reactions in glycogen debranching, the mechanism of their catalysis and highly specific substrate recognition. The unique tertiary structure of GDE provides additional contacts to glycogen besides its active sites, and our biochemical experiments indicate that they mediate its recruitment to glycogen and regulate its activity. Combining the understanding of the GDE catalysis and functional characterizations of its disease-causing mutations provides molecular insights into GSDIII. PMID:27088557

  19. Crystal structure of Streptococcus pneumoniae pneumolysin provides key insights into early steps of pore formation

    PubMed Central

    Lawrence, Sara L.; Feil, Susanne C.; Morton, Craig J.; Farrand, Allison J.; Mulhern, Terrence D.; Gorman, Michael A.; Wade, Kristin R.; Tweten, Rodney K.; Parker, Michael W.

    2015-01-01

    Pore-forming proteins are weapons often used by bacterial pathogens to breach the membrane barrier of target cells. Despite their critical role in infection important structural aspects of the mechanism of how these proteins assemble into pores remain unknown. Streptococcus pneumoniae is the world’s leading cause of pneumonia, meningitis, bacteremia and otitis media. Pneumolysin (PLY) is a major virulence factor of S. pneumoniae and a target for both small molecule drug development and vaccines. PLY is a member of the cholesterol-dependent cytolysins (CDCs), a family of pore-forming toxins that form gigantic pores in cell membranes. Here we present the structure of PLY determined by X-ray crystallography and, in solution, by small-angle X-ray scattering. The crystal structure reveals PLY assembles as a linear oligomer that provides key structural insights into the poorly understood early monomer-monomer interactions of CDCs at the membrane surface. PMID:26403197

  20. Structure of the Hantavirus Nucleoprotein Provides Insights into the Mechanism of RNA Encapsidation.

    PubMed

    Olal, Daniel; Daumke, Oliver

    2016-03-01

    Hantaviruses are etiological agents of life-threatening hemorrhagic fever with renal syndrome and hantavirus cardiopulmonary syndrome. The nucleoprotein (N) of hantavirus is essential for viral transcription and replication, thus representing an attractive target for therapeutic intervention. We have determined the crystal structure of hantavirus N to 3.2 Å resolution. The structure reveals a two-lobed, mostly α-helical structure that is distantly related to that of orthobunyavirus Ns. A basic RNA binding pocket is located at the intersection between the two lobes. We provide evidence that oligomerization is mediated by amino- and C-terminal arms that bind to the adjacent monomers. Based on these findings, we suggest a model for the oligomeric ribonucleoprotein (RNP) complex. Our structure provides mechanistic insights into RNA encapsidation in the genus Hantavirus and constitutes a template for drug discovery efforts aimed at combating hantavirus infections. PMID:26923588

  1. Structural Insights into the Recognition of Phosphopeptide by the FHA Domain of Kanadaptin

    PubMed Central

    Nielsen, Tine K.; Grant, Joanna C.; Lesley, Scott A.; Elsliger, Marc-André; Deacon, Ashley M.; Wilson, Ian A.

    2014-01-01

    Kanadaptin is a nuclear protein of unknown function that is widely expressed in mammalian tissues. The crystal structure of the forkhead-associated (FHA) domain of human kanadaptin was determined to 1.6 Å resolution. The structure reveals an asymmetric dimer in which one monomer is complexed with a phosphopeptide mimic derived from a peptide segment from the N-terminus of a symmetry-related molecule as well as a sulfate bound to the structurally conserved phosphothreonine recognition cleft. This structure provides insights into the molecular recognition features utilized by this family of proteins and represents the first evidence that kanadaptin is likely involved in a phosphorylation-mediated signaling pathway. These results will be of use for designing experiments to further probe the function of kanadaptin. PMID:25197798

  2. Crystal structure of glycogen debranching enzyme and insights into its catalysis and disease-causing mutations.

    PubMed

    Zhai, Liting; Feng, Lingling; Xia, Lin; Yin, Huiyong; Xiang, Song

    2016-01-01

    Glycogen is a branched glucose polymer and serves as an important energy store. Its debranching is a critical step in its mobilization. In animals and fungi, the 170 kDa glycogen debranching enzyme (GDE) catalyses this reaction. GDE deficiencies in humans are associated with severe diseases collectively termed glycogen storage disease type III (GSDIII). We report crystal structures of GDE and its complex with oligosaccharides, and structure-guided mutagenesis and biochemical studies to assess the structural observations. These studies reveal that distinct domains in GDE catalyse sequential reactions in glycogen debranching, the mechanism of their catalysis and highly specific substrate recognition. The unique tertiary structure of GDE provides additional contacts to glycogen besides its active sites, and our biochemical experiments indicate that they mediate its recruitment to glycogen and regulate its activity. Combining the understanding of the GDE catalysis and functional characterizations of its disease-causing mutations provides molecular insights into GSDIII. PMID:27088557

  3. Structural Insights into Divalent Cation Modulations of ATP-Gated P2X Receptor Channels.

    PubMed

    Kasuya, Go; Fujiwara, Yuichiro; Takemoto, Mizuki; Dohmae, Naoshi; Nakada-Nakura, Yoshiko; Ishitani, Ryuichiro; Hattori, Motoyuki; Nureki, Osamu

    2016-02-01

    P2X receptors are trimeric ATP-gated cation channels involved in physiological processes ranging widely from neurotransmission to pain and taste signal transduction. The modulation of the channel gating, including that by divalent cations, contributes to these diverse physiological functions of P2X receptors. Here, we report the crystal structure of an invertebrate P2X receptor from the Gulf Coast tick Amblyomma maculatum in the presence of ATP and Zn(2+) ion, together with electrophysiological and computational analyses. The structure revealed two distinct metal binding sites, M1 and M2, in the extracellular region. The M1 site, located at the trimer interface, is responsible for Zn(2+) potentiation by facilitating the structural change of the extracellular domain for pore opening. In contrast, the M2 site, coupled with the ATP binding site, might contribute to regulation by Mg(2+). Overall, our work provides structural insights into the divalent cation modulations of P2X receptors. PMID:26804916

  4. Crystal structure of Streptococcus pneumoniae pneumolysin provides key insights into early steps of pore formation.

    PubMed

    Lawrence, Sara L; Feil, Susanne C; Morton, Craig J; Farrand, Allison J; Mulhern, Terrence D; Gorman, Michael A; Wade, Kristin R; Tweten, Rodney K; Parker, Michael W

    2015-01-01

    Pore-forming proteins are weapons often used by bacterial pathogens to breach the membrane barrier of target cells. Despite their critical role in infection important structural aspects of the mechanism of how these proteins assemble into pores remain unknown. Streptococcus pneumoniae is the world's leading cause of pneumonia, meningitis, bacteremia and otitis media. Pneumolysin (PLY) is a major virulence factor of S. pneumoniae and a target for both small molecule drug development and vaccines. PLY is a member of the cholesterol-dependent cytolysins (CDCs), a family of pore-forming toxins that form gigantic pores in cell membranes. Here we present the structure of PLY determined by X-ray crystallography and, in solution, by small-angle X-ray scattering. The crystal structure reveals PLY assembles as a linear oligomer that provides key structural insights into the poorly understood early monomer-monomer interactions of CDCs at the membrane surface. PMID:26403197

  5. Biochemical and Structural Insights into the Aminotransferase CrmG in Caerulomycin Biosynthesis.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Yiguang; Xu, Jinxin; Mei, Xiangui; Feng, Zhan; Zhang, Liping; Zhang, Qingbo; Zhang, Guangtao; Zhu, Weiming; Liu, Jinsong; Zhang, Changsheng

    2016-04-15

    Caerulomycin A (CRM A 1) belongs to a family of natural products containing a 2,2'-bipyridyl ring core structure and is currently under development as a potent novel immunosuppressive agent. Herein, we report the functional characterization, kinetic analysis, substrate specificity, and structure insights of an aminotransferase CrmG in 1 biosynthesis. The aminotransferase CrmG was confirmed to catalyze a key transamination reaction to convert an aldehyde group to an amino group in the 1 biosynthetic pathway, preferring l-glutamate and l-glutamine as the amino donor substrates. The crystal structures of CrmG in complex with the cofactor 5'-pyridoxal phosphate (PLP) or 5'-pyridoxamine phosphate (PMP) or the acceptor substrate were determined to adopt a canonical fold-type I of PLP-dependent enzymes with a unique small additional domain. The structure guided site-directed mutagenesis identified key amino acid residues for substrate binding and catalytic activities, thus providing insights into the transamination mechanism of CrmG. PMID:26714051

  6. Structural and kinetic insights into the mechanism of 5-hydroxyisourate hydrolase from Klebsiella pneumoniae

    SciTech Connect

    French, Jarrod B.; Ealick, Steven E.

    2011-08-01

    The crystal structure of 5-hydroxyisourate hydrolase from K. pneumoniae and the steady-state kinetic parameters of the native enzyme as well as several mutants provide insights into the catalytic mechanism of this enzyme and the possible roles of the active-site residues. The stereospecific oxidative degradation of uric acid to (S)-allantoin has recently been demonstrated to proceed via two unstable intermediates and requires three separate enzymatic reactions. The second step of this reaction, the conversion of 5-hydroxyisourate (HIU) to 2-oxo-4-hydroxy-4-carboxy-5-ureidoimidazoline, is catalyzed by HIU hydrolase (HIUH). The high-resolution crystal structure of HIUH from the opportunistic pathogen Klebsiella pneumoniae (KpHIUH) has been determined. KpHIUH is a homotetrameric protein that, based on sequence and structural similarity, belongs to the transthyretin-related protein family. In addition, the steady-state kinetic parameters for this enzyme and four active-site mutants have been measured. These data provide valuable insight into the functional roles of the active-site residues. Based upon the structural and kinetic data, a mechanism is proposed for the KpHIUH-catalyzed reaction.

  7. Structure of Human GIVD Cytosolic Phospholipase A2 Reveals Insights into Substrate Recognition.

    PubMed

    Wang, Hui; Klein, Michael G; Snell, Gyorgy; Lane, Weston; Zou, Hua; Levin, Irena; Li, Ke; Sang, Bi-Ching

    2016-07-01

    Cytosolic phospholipases A2 (cPLA2s) consist of a family of calcium-sensitive enzymes that function to generate lipid second messengers through hydrolysis of membrane-associated glycerophospholipids. The GIVD cPLA2 (cPLA2δ) is a potential drug target for developing a selective therapeutic agent for the treatment of psoriasis. Here, we present two X-ray structures of human cPLA2δ, capturing an apo state, and in complex with a substrate-like inhibitor. Comparison of the apo and inhibitor-bound structures reveals conformational changes in a flexible cap that allows the substrate to access the relatively buried active site, providing new insight into the mechanism for substrate recognition. The cPLA2δ structure reveals an unexpected second C2 domain that was previously unrecognized from sequence alignments, placing cPLA2δ into the class of membrane-associated proteins that contain a tandem pair of C2 domains. Furthermore, our structures elucidate novel inter-domain interactions and define three potential calcium-binding sites that are likely important for regulation and activation of enzymatic activity. These findings provide novel insights into the molecular mechanisms governing cPLA2's function in signal transduction. PMID:27220631

  8. Crystal Structure of Human Myotubularin-Related Protein 1 Provides Insight into the Structural Basis of Substrate Specificity

    PubMed Central

    Bong, Seoung Min; Son, Kka-bi; Yang, Seung-Won; Park, Jae-Won; Cho, Jea-Won; Kim, Kyung-Tae; Kim, Hackyoung; Kim, Seung Jun; Kim, Young Jun; Lee, Byung Il

    2016-01-01

    Myotubularin-related protein 1 (MTMR1) is a phosphatase that belongs to the tyrosine/dual-specificity phosphatase superfamily. MTMR1 has been shown to use phosphatidylinositol 3-monophosphate (PI(3)P) and/or phosphatidylinositol 3,5-bisphosphate (PI(3,5)P2) as substrates. Here, we determined the crystal structure of human MTMR1. The refined model consists of the Pleckstrin homology (PH)-GRAM and phosphatase (PTP) domains. The overall structure was highly similar to the previously reported MTMR2 structure. Interestingly, two phosphate molecules were coordinated by strictly conserved residues located in the C(X)5R motif of the active site. Additionally, our biochemical studies confirmed the substrate specificity of MTMR1 for PI(3)P and PI(3,5)P2 over other phosphatidylinositol phosphates. Our structural and enzymatic analyses provide insight into the catalytic mechanism and biochemical properties of MTMR1. PMID:27018598

  9. Structural studies of Pseudomonas and Chromobacterium ω-aminotransferases provide insights into their differing substrate specificity

    SciTech Connect

    Sayer, Christopher; Isupov, Michail N.; Westlake, Aaron; Littlechild, Jennifer A.

    2013-04-01

    The X-ray structures of two ω-aminotransferases from P. aeruginosa and C. violaceum in complex with an inhibitor offer the first detailed insight into the structural basis of the substrate specificity of these industrially important enzymes. The crystal structures and inhibitor complexes of two industrially important ω-aminotransferase enzymes from Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Chromobacterium violaceum have been determined in order to understand the differences in their substrate specificity. The two enzymes share 30% sequence identity and use the same amino acceptor, pyruvate; however, the Pseudomonas enzyme shows activity towards the amino donor β-alanine, whilst the Chromobacterium enzyme does not. Both enzymes show activity towards S-α-methylbenzylamine (MBA), with the Chromobacterium enzyme having a broader substrate range. The crystal structure of the P. aeruginosa enzyme has been solved in the holo form and with the inhibitor gabaculine bound. The C. violaceum enzyme has been solved in the apo and holo forms and with gabaculine bound. The structures of the holo forms of both enzymes are quite similar. There is little conformational difference observed between the inhibitor complex and the holoenzyme for the P. aeruginosa aminotransferase. In comparison, the crystal structure of the C. violaceum gabaculine complex shows significant structural rearrangements from the structures of both the apo and holo forms of the enzyme. It appears that the different rigidity of the protein scaffold contributes to the substrate specificity observed for the two ω-aminotransferases.

  10. Structural insights into the role of domain flexibility in human DNA ligase IV.

    PubMed

    Ochi, Takashi; Wu, Qian; Chirgadze, Dimitri Y; Grossmann, J Günter; Bolanos-Garcia, Victor M; Blundell, Tom L

    2012-07-01

    Knowledge of the architecture of DNA ligase IV (LigIV) and interactions with XRCC4 and XLF-Cernunnos is necessary for understanding its role in the ligation of double-strand breaks during nonhomologous end joining. Here we report the structure of a subdomain of the nucleotidyltrasferase domain of human LigIV and provide insights into the residues associated with LIG4 syndrome. We use this structural information together with the known structures of the BRCT/XRCC4 complex and those of LigIV orthologs to interpret small-angle X-ray scattering of LigIV in complex with XRCC4 and size exclusion chromatography of LigIV, XRCC4, and XLF-Cernunnos. Our results suggest that the flexibility of the catalytic region is limited in a manner that affects the formation of the LigIV/XRCC4/XLF-Cernunnos complex. PMID:22658747

  11. The βc receptor family - Structural insights and their functional implications.

    PubMed

    Broughton, Sophie E; Nero, Tracy L; Dhagat, Urmi; Kan, Winnie L; Hercus, Timothy R; Tvorogov, Denis; Lopez, Angel F; Parker, Michael W

    2015-08-01

    Granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF), interleukin-3 (IL-3) and IL-5 are members of a small family of cytokines that share a beta receptor subunit (βc). These cytokines regulate the growth, differentiation, migration and effector function activities of many hematopoietic cells in bone marrow, blood and sites of inflammation. Excessive or aberrant signaling can result in chronic inflammatory conditions and myeloid leukemias. The crystal structures of the GM-CSF ternary complex, the IL-5 binary complex and the very recent IL-3 receptor alpha subunit build upon decades of structure-function studies, giving new insights into cytokine-receptor specificity and signal transduction. Selective modulation of receptor function is now a real possibility and the structures of the βc receptor family are being used to discover novel and disease-specific therapeutics. PMID:25982846

  12. Integrative phenomics reveals insight into the structure of phenotypic diversity in budding yeast

    PubMed Central

    Skelly, Daniel A.; Merrihew, Gennifer E.; Riffle, Michael; Connelly, Caitlin F.; Kerr, Emily O.; Johansson, Marnie; Jaschob, Daniel; Graczyk, Beth; Shulman, Nicholas J.; Wakefield, Jon; Cooper, Sara J.; Fields, Stanley; Noble, William S.; Muller, Eric G.D.; Davis, Trisha N.; Dunham, Maitreya J.; MacCoss, Michael J.; Akey, Joshua M.

    2013-01-01

    To better understand the quantitative characteristics and structure of phenotypic diversity, we measured over 14,000 transcript, protein, metabolite, and morphological traits in 22 genetically diverse strains of Saccharomyces cerevisiae. More than 50% of all measured traits varied significantly across strains [false discovery rate (FDR) = 5%]. The structure of phenotypic correlations is complex, with 85% of all traits significantly correlated with at least one other phenotype (median = 6, maximum = 328). We show how high-dimensional molecular phenomics data sets can be leveraged to accurately predict phenotypic variation between strains, often with greater precision than afforded by DNA sequence information alone. These results provide new insights into the spectrum and structure of phenotypic diversity and the characteristics influencing the ability to accurately predict phenotypes. PMID:23720455

  13. Structural Insights into the Role of Domain Flexibility in Human DNA Ligase IV

    PubMed Central

    Ochi, Takashi; Wu, Qian; Chirgadze, Dimitri Y.; Grossmann, J. Günter; Bolanos-Garcia, Victor M.; Blundell, Tom L.

    2012-01-01

    Summary Knowledge of the architecture of DNA ligase IV (LigIV) and interactions with XRCC4 and XLF-Cernunnos is necessary for understanding its role in the ligation of double-strand breaks during nonhomologous end joining. Here we report the structure of a subdomain of the nucleotidyltrasferase domain of human LigIV and provide insights into the residues associated with LIG4 syndrome. We use this structural information together with the known structures of the BRCT/XRCC4 complex and those of LigIV orthologs to interpret small-angle X-ray scattering of LigIV in complex with XRCC4 and size exclusion chromatography of LigIV, XRCC4, and XLF-Cernunnos. Our results suggest that the flexibility of the catalytic region is limited in a manner that affects the formation of the LigIV/XRCC4/XLF-Cernunnos complex. PMID:22658747

  14. Structure of Protein Related to DAN and Cerberus (PRDC): Insights into the Mechanism of BMP Antagonism

    PubMed Central

    Nolan, Kristof; Kattamuri, Chandramohan; Luedeke, David M.; Deng, Andy; Jagpal, Amrita; Zhang, Fuming; Linhardt, Robert; Kenny, Alan P.; Zorn, Aaron M.; Thompson, Thomas B.

    2013-01-01

    Summary The Bone Morphogenetic Proteins (BMP) are secreted ligands largely known for their functional roles in embryogenesis and tissue development. A number of structurally diverse extracellular antagonists inhibit BMP ligands to regulate signaling. The DAN family of antagonists represents the largest group of BMP inhibitors, however, little is known for how they mechanistically inhibit BMP ligands. Here, we present the structure of the DAN family member Protein Related to Dan and Cerberus (PRDC) solved by X-ray crystallography. The structure reveals an unexpected growth factor-like appearance with a novel dimerization mechanism that is formed through extensive β-strand contacts. Using site-directed mutagenesis coupled with in vitro and in vivo activity assays, we identified a BMP binding epitope on PRDC. We also determined that PRDC binds heparin with high affinity and that heparin binding to PRDC interferes with BMP antagonism. These results offer insight for how DAN family antagonists functionally inhibit BMP ligands. PMID:23850456

  15. Structural and kinetic insights into the mechanism of 5-hydroxyisourate hydrolase from Klebsiella pneumoniae

    SciTech Connect

    French, Jarrod B.; Ealick, Steven E.

    2011-07-19

    The stereospecific oxidative degradation of uric acid to (S)-allantoin has recently been demonstrated to proceed via two unstable intermediates and requires three separate enzymatic reactions. The second step of this reaction, the conversion of 5-hydroxyisourate (HIU) to 2-oxo-4-hydroxy-4-carboxy-5-ureidoimidazoline, is catalyzed by HIU hydrolase (HIUH). The high-resolution crystal structure of HIUH from the opportunistic pathogen Klebsiella pneumoniae (KpHIUH) has been determined. KpHIUH is a homotetrameric protein that, based on sequence and structural similarity, belongs to the transthyretin-related protein family. In addition, the steady-state kinetic parameters for this enzyme and four active-site mutants have been measured. These data provide valuable insight into the functional roles of the active-site residues. Based upon the structural and kinetic data, a mechanism is proposed for the KpHIUH-catalyzed reaction.

  16. Structure, dynamics, and function of the monooxygenase P450 BM-3: insights from computer simulations studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roccatano, Danilo

    2015-07-01

    The monooxygenase P450 BM-3 is a NADPH-dependent fatty acid hydroxylase enzyme isolated from soil bacterium Bacillus megaterium. As a pivotal member of cytochrome P450 superfamily, it has been intensely studied for the comprehension of structure-dynamics-function relationships in this class of enzymes. In addition, due to its peculiar properties, it is also a promising enzyme for biochemical and biomedical applications. However, despite the efforts, the full understanding of the enzyme structure and dynamics is not yet achieved. Computational studies, particularly molecular dynamics (MD) simulations, have importantly contributed to this endeavor by providing new insights at an atomic level regarding the correlations between structure, dynamics, and function of the protein. This topical review summarizes computational studies based on MD simulations of the cytochrome P450 BM-3 and gives an outlook on future directions.

  17. The core structure of Mars as expected to be seen by InSight's VBB seismometer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hempel, Stefanie; Garcia, Raphael; Wieczorek, Mark; Murdoch, Naomi

    2016-04-01

    The question of the Martian core concerns our basic understanding of the planet's thermal evolution, dynamo models for the past and present, the composition of the Martian mantle, especially in regards to its iron content and prevalent phase transitions, which in turn constrain possible regimes of mantle convection. So far the (outer) core radius of Mars is uncertain to about 250 kilometers (Sohl et al., 2005), and evidence neither supports nor falsifies the existence of an inner core (Defraigne et al., 2003). We apply our extensions of the ray tracing toolbox TauP (Crotwell et al., 1999) to compute amplitude loss, ellipticity, crustal and topography corrections in combination with existing models of seismic activity on Mars (Golombek, 1992, Knapmeyer et al., 2006), crustal thickness models (Wieczorek, 2007) and structure models (e.g. Okal and Anderson, 1978, Zharkov and Gudkova, 2000, Rivoldini et al., 2011). In preparation for NASA's discovery mission InSight, we simulate the detected relative travel-time curves at a single seismic station in Elysium Planitia for several models of Martian structure, seismicity, environmental and instrumental noise. We discuss possibilities and difficulties of considering the effects of Martian ellipticity and topography up to degree 8 and 30, respectively. Furthermore, we demonstrate the effect of low velocity layers, as well as the relevance of modeling the effects of ellipticity and crustal thickness during the interpretation of seismic data acquired by InSight's SEIS instrument on Mars, especially concerning seismic phases which provide direct evidence on the core structure of Mars.

  18. Splitsville: structural and functional insights into the dynamic bacterial Z ring.

    PubMed

    Haeusser, Daniel P; Margolin, William

    2016-05-01

    Bacteria must divide to increase in number and colonize their niche. Binary fission is the most widespread means of bacterial cell division, but even this relatively simple mechanism has many variations on a theme. In most bacteria, the tubulin homologue FtsZ assembles into a ring structure, termed the Z ring, at the site of cytokinesis and recruits additional proteins to form a large protein machine - the divisome - that spans the membrane. In this Review, we discuss current insights into the regulation of the assembly of the Z ring and how the divisome drives membrane invagination and septal cell wall growth while flexibly responding to various cellular inputs. PMID:27040757

  19. Structural and mechanistic insights into methane oxidation by particulate methane monooxygenase.

    PubMed

    Balasubramanian, Ramakrishnan; Rosenzweig, Amy C

    2007-07-01

    Particulate methane monooxygense (pMMO) is an integral membrane copper-containing enzyme that converts methane to methanol. Knowledge of how pMMO selectively oxidizes methane under ambient conditions could impact the development of new catalysts. The crystal structure of Methylococcus capsulatus (Bath) pMMO reveals the composition and location of three metal centers. Spectroscopic data provide insight into the coordination environments and oxidation states of these metal centers. These results, combined with computational studies and comparisons to relevant systems, are discussed in the context of identifying the most likely site for O 2 activation. PMID:17444606

  20. Honey Bees' Behavior Is Impaired by Chronic Exposure to the Neonicotinoid Thiacloprid in the Field.

    PubMed

    Tison, Léa; Hahn, Marie-Luise; Holtz, Sophie; Rößner, Alexander; Greggers, Uwe; Bischoff, Gabriela; Menzel, Randolf

    2016-07-01

    The decline of pollinators worldwide is of growing concern and has been related to the use of plant-protecting chemicals. Most studies have focused on three neonicotinoid insecticides (clothianidin, imidacloprid, and thiamethoxam) currently subject to a moratorium in the EU. Here, we focus on thiacloprid, a widely used cyano-substituted neonicotinoid thought to be less toxic to honey bees and of which use has increased in the last years. Honey bees (Apis mellifera carnica) were exposed chronically to thiacloprid in the field for several weeks at a sublethal concentration. Foraging behavior, homing success, navigation performance, and social communication were impaired, and thiacloprid residue levels increased both in the foragers and the nest mates over time. The effects observed in the field were not due to a repellent taste of the substance. For the first time, we present the necessary data for the risk evaluation of thiacloprid taken up chronically by honey bees in field conditions. PMID:27268938

  1. A restatement of the natural science evidence base concerning neonicotinoid insecticides and insect pollinators

    PubMed Central

    Godfray, H. Charles J.; Blacquière, Tjeerd; Field, Linda M.; Hails, Rosemary S.; Petrokofsky, Gillian; Potts, Simon G.; Raine, Nigel E.; Vanbergen, Adam J.; McLean, Angela R.

    2014-01-01

    There is evidence that in Europe and North America many species of pollinators are in decline, both in abundance and distribution. Although there is a long list of potential causes of this decline, there is concern that neonicotinoid insecticides, in particular through their use as seed treatments are, at least in part, responsible. This paper describes a project that set out to summarize the natural science evidence base relevant to neonicotinoid insecticides and insect pollinators in as policy-neutral terms as possible. A series of evidence statements are listed and categorized according to the nature of the underlying information. The evidence summary forms the appendix to this paper and an annotated bibliography is provided in the electronic supplementary material. PMID:24850927

  2. Systemic insecticides (neonicotinoids and fipronil): trends, uses, mode of action and metabolites.

    PubMed

    Simon-Delso, N; Amaral-Rogers, V; Belzunces, L P; Bonmatin, J M; Chagnon, M; Downs, C; Furlan, L; Gibbons, D W; Giorio, C; Girolami, V; Goulson, D; Kreutzweiser, D P; Krupke, C H; Liess, M; Long, E; McField, M; Mineau, P; Mitchell, E A D; Morrissey, C A; Noome, D A; Pisa, L; Settele, J; Stark, J D; Tapparo, A; Van Dyck, H; Van Praagh, J; Van der Sluijs, J P; Whitehorn, P R; Wiemers, M

    2015-01-01

    Since their discovery in the late 1980s, neonicotinoid pesticides have become the most widely used class of insecticides worldwide, with large-scale applications ranging from plant protection (crops, vegetables, fruits), veterinary products, and biocides to invertebrate pest control in fish farming. In this review, we address the phenyl-pyrazole fipronil together with neonicotinoids because of similarities in their toxicity, physicochemical profiles, and presence in the environment. Neonicotinoids and fipronil currently account for approximately one third of the world insecticide market; the annual world production of the archetype neonicotinoid, imidacloprid, was estimated to be ca. 20,000 tonnes active substance in 2010. There were several reasons for the initial success of neonicotinoids and fipronil: (1) there was no known pesticide resistance in target pests, mainly because of their recent development, (2) their physicochemical properties included many advantages over previous generations of insecticides (i.e., organophosphates, carbamates, pyrethroids, etc.), and (3) they shared an assumed reduced operator and consumer risk. Due to their systemic nature, they are taken up by the roots or leaves and translocated to all parts of the plant, which, in turn, makes them effectively toxic to herbivorous insects. The toxicity persists for a variable period of time-depending on the plant, its growth stage, and the amount of pesticide applied. A wide variety of applications are available, including the most common prophylactic non-Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) application by seed coating. As a result of their extensive use and physicochemical properties, these substances can be found in all environmental compartments including soil, water, and air. Neonicotinoids and fipronil operate by disrupting neural transmission in the central nervous system of invertebrates. Neonicotinoids mimic the action of neurotransmitters, while fipronil inhibits neuronal receptors. In

  3. Population variation in and selection for resistance to pyrethroid-neonicotinoid insecticides in the bed bug.

    PubMed

    Gordon, Jennifer R; Goodman, Mark H; Potter, Michael F; Haynes, Kenneth F

    2014-01-01

    Pyrethroid resistance in bed bugs, Cimex lectularius, has prompted a change to combination products that include a pyrethroid and a neonicotinoid. Ten populations of bed bugs were challenged with two combination products (Temprid SC and Transport GHP). Susceptibility of these populations varied, with the correlated response of the two products indicating cross resistance. We imposed selection on three populations using label rate Temprid, and then reared progeny from unselected and selected strains. All selected strains were significantly less susceptible to Temprid SC than unselected strains. Temprid selected strains were also less susceptible to Transport. The pyrethroid component of Temprid showed a significantly higher LD50 in selected strains, but susceptibility to the neonicotinoid remained unchanged. Taken together these results indicate resistance to combination insecticides is present in field populations at levels that should be of concern, and that short-term selection affecting existing variance in susceptibility can quickly increase resistance. PMID:24452337

  4. Neonicotinoid clothianidin adversely affects insect immunity and promotes replication of a viral pathogen in honey bees.

    PubMed

    Di Prisco, Gennaro; Cavaliere, Valeria; Annoscia, Desiderato; Varricchio, Paola; Caprio, Emilio; Nazzi, Francesco; Gargiulo, Giuseppe; Pennacchio, Francesco

    2013-11-12

    Large-scale losses of honey bee colonies represent a poorly understood problem of global importance. Both biotic and abiotic factors are involved in this phenomenon that is often associated with high loads of parasites and pathogens. A stronger impact of pathogens in honey bees exposed to neonicotinoid insecticides has been reported, but the causal link between insecticide exposure and the possible immune alteration of honey bees remains elusive. Here, we demonstrate that the neonicotinoid insecticide clothianidin negatively modulates NF-κB immune signaling in insects and adversely affects honey bee antiviral defenses controlled by this transcription factor. We have identified in insects a negative modulator of NF-κB activation, which is a leucine-rich repeat protein. Exposure to clothianidin, by enhancing the transcription of the gene encoding this inhibitor, reduces immune defenses and promotes the replication of the deformed wing virus in honey bees bearing covert infections. This honey bee immunosuppression is similarly induced by a different neonicotinoid, imidacloprid, but not by the organophosphate chlorpyriphos, which does not affect NF-κB signaling. The occurrence at sublethal doses of this insecticide-induced viral proliferation suggests that the studied neonicotinoids might have a negative effect at the field level. Our experiments uncover a further level of regulation of the immune response in insects and set the stage for studies on neural modulation of immunity in animals. Furthermore, this study has implications for the conservation of bees, as it will contribute to the definition of more appropriate guidelines for testing chronic or sublethal effects of pesticides used in agriculture. PMID:24145453

  5. Effects of imidacloprid, a neonicotinoid pesticide, on reproduction in worker bumble bees (Bombus terrestris).

    PubMed

    Laycock, Ian; Lenthall, Kate M; Barratt, Andrew T; Cresswell, James E

    2012-10-01

    Bumble bees are important pollinators whose populations have declined over recent years, raising widespread concern. One conspicuous threat to bumble bees is their unintended exposure to trace residues of systemic neonicotinoid pesticides, such as imidacloprid, which are ingested when bees forage on the nectar and pollen of treated crops. However, the demographic consequences for bumble bees of exposure to dietary neonicotinoids have yet to be fully established. To determine whether environmentally realistic levels of imidacloprid are capable of making a demographic impact on bumble bees, we exposed queenless microcolonies of worker bumble bees, Bombus terrestris, to a range of dosages of dietary imidacloprid between zero and 125 μg L(-1) and examined the effects on ovary development and fecundity. Microcolonies showed a dose-dependent decline in fecundity, with environmentally realistic dosages in the range of 1 μg L(-1) capable of reducing brood production by one third. In contrast, ovary development was unimpaired by dietary imidacloprid except at the highest dosage. Imidacloprid reduced feeding on both syrup and pollen but, after controlling statistically for dosage, microcolonies that consumed more syrup and pollen produced more brood. We therefore speculate that the detrimental effects of imidacloprid on fecundity emerge principally from nutrient limitation imposed by the failure of individuals to feed. Our findings raise concern about the impact of neonicotinoids on wild bumble bee populations. However, we recognize that to fully evaluate impacts on wild colonies it will be necessary to establish the effect of dietary neonicotinoids on the fecundity of bumble bee queens. PMID:22614036

  6. Neonicotinoid Insecticides Alter Induced Defenses and Increase Susceptibility to Spider Mites in Distantly Related Crop Plants

    PubMed Central

    Szczepaniec, Adrianna; Raupp, Michael J.; Parker, Roy D.; Kerns, David; Eubanks, Micky D.

    2013-01-01

    Background Chemical suppression of arthropod herbivores is the most common approach to plant protection. Insecticides, however, can cause unintended, adverse consequences for non-target organisms. Previous studies focused on the effects of pesticides on target and non-target pests, predatory arthropods, and concomitant ecological disruptions. Little research, however, has focused on the direct effects of insecticides on plants. Here we demonstrate that applications of neonicotinoid insecticides, one of the most important insecticide classes worldwide, suppress expression of important plant defense genes, alter levels of phytohormones involved in plant defense, and decrease plant resistance to unsusceptible herbivores, spider mites Tetranychus urticae (Acari: Tetranychidae), in multiple, distantly related crop plants. Methodology/Principal Findings Using cotton (Gossypium hirsutum), corn (Zea mays) and tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) plants, we show that transcription of phenylalanine amonia lyase, coenzyme A ligase, trypsin protease inhibitor and chitinase are suppressed and concentrations of the phytohormone OPDA and salicylic acid were altered by neonicotinoid insecticides. Consequently, the population growth of spider mites increased from 30% to over 100% on neonicotinoid-treated plants in the greenhouse and by nearly 200% in the field experiment. Conclusions/Significance Our findings are important because applications of neonicotinoid insecticides have been associated with outbreaks of spider mites in several unrelated plant species. More importantly, this is the first study to document insecticide-mediated disruption of plant defenses and link it to increased population growth of a non-target herbivore. This study adds to growing evidence that bioactive agrochemicals can have unanticipated ecological effects and suggests that the direct effects of insecticides on plant defenses should be considered when the ecological costs of insecticides are evaluated. PMID

  7. Insights into eukaryotic primer synthesis from structures of the p48 subunit of human DNA primase

    PubMed Central

    Vaithiyalingam, Sivaraja; Arnett, Diana R.; Aggarwal, Amit; Eichman, Brandt F.; Fanning, Ellen; Chazin, Walter J.

    2013-01-01

    DNA replication in all organisms requires polymerases to synthesize copies of the genome. DNA polymerases are unable to function on a bare template and require a primer. Primases are crucial RNA polymerases that perform the initial de novo synthesis, generating the first 8–10 nucleotides of the primer. Although structures of archaeal and bacterial primases have provided insights into general priming mechanisms, these proteins are not well conserved with heterodimeric (p48/p58) primases in eukaryotes. Here, we present X-ray crystal structures of the catalytic engine of a eukaryotic primase, which is contained in the p48 subunit. The structures of p48 reveal eukaryotic primases maintain the conserved catalytic prim fold domain, but with a unique sub-domain not found in the archaeal and bacterial primases. Calorimetry experiments reveal Mn2+ but not Mg2+ significantly enhances the binding of nucleotide to primase, which correlates with in vitro higher catalytic efficiency. The structure of p48 with bound UTP and Mn2+ provides insights into the mechanism of nucleotide synthesis by primase. Substitution of conserved residues involved in either metal or nucleotide binding altered nucleotide binding affinities, and yeast strains containing the corresponding Pri1p substitutions were not viable. Our results revealed two residues (S160 and H166) in direct contact with the nucleotide that were previously unrecognized as critical to the human primase active site. Comparing p48 structures to those of similar polymerases in different states of action suggests changes that would be required to attain a catalytically competent conformation capable of initiating dinucleotide synthesis. PMID:24239947

  8. Structure of sulfamidase provides insight into the molecular pathology of mucopolysaccharidosis IIIA

    SciTech Connect

    Sidhu, Navdeep S.; Schreiber, Kathrin; Pröpper, Kevin; Becker, Stefan; Usón, Isabel; Sheldrick, George M.; Gärtner, Jutta; Krätzner, Ralph Steinfeld, Robert

    2014-05-01

    Mucopolysaccharidosis IIIA is a fatal neurodegenerative disease that typically manifests itself in childhood and is caused by mutations in the gene for the lysosomal enzyme sulfamidase. The first structure of this enzyme is presented, which provides insight into the molecular basis of disease-causing mutations, and the enzymatic mechanism is proposed. Mucopolysaccharidosis type IIIA (Sanfilippo A syndrome), a fatal childhood-onset neurodegenerative disease with mild facial, visceral and skeletal abnormalities, is caused by an inherited deficiency of the enzyme N-sulfoglucosamine sulfohydrolase (SGSH; sulfamidase). More than 100 mutations in the SGSH gene have been found to reduce or eliminate its enzymatic activity. However, the molecular understanding of the effect of these mutations has been confined by a lack of structural data for this enzyme. Here, the crystal structure of glycosylated SGSH is presented at 2 Å resolution. Despite the low sequence identity between this unique N-sulfatase and the group of O-sulfatases, they share a similar overall fold and active-site architecture, including a catalytic formylglycine, a divalent metal-binding site and a sulfate-binding site. However, a highly conserved lysine in O-sulfatases is replaced in SGSH by an arginine (Arg282) that is positioned to bind the N-linked sulfate substrate. The structure also provides insight into the diverse effects of pathogenic mutations on SGSH function in mucopolysaccharidosis type IIIA and convincing evidence for the molecular consequences of many missense mutations. Further, the molecular characterization of SGSH mutations will lay the groundwork for the development of structure-based drug design for this devastating neurodegenerative disorder.

  9. A simultaneous extraction method for organophosphate, pyrethroid, and neonicotinoid insecticides in aqueous samples.

    PubMed

    de Perre, Chloé; Whiting, Sara A; Lydy, Michael J

    2015-05-01

    A method was developed for the extraction and analysis of 2 organophosphate, 8 pyrethroid, and 5 neonicotinoid insecticides from the same water sample. A salted liquid-liquid extraction (LLE) was optimized with a solid-phase extraction (SPE) step that separated the organophosphates (OPs) and pyrethroids from the neonicotinoids. Factors that were optimized included volume of solvent and amount of salt used in the LLE, homogenization time for the LLE, and type and volume of eluting solvent used for the SPE. The OPs and pyrethroids were quantified using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, and the neonicotinoids were quantified using liquid chromatography-diode array detector. Results showed that the optimized method was accurate, precise, reproducible, and robust; recoveries in river water spiked with 100 ng L(-1) of each of the insecticides were all between 86 and 114 % with RSDs between 2 and 8 %. The method was also sensitive with method detection limits ranging from 0.1 to 27.2 ng L(-1) depending on compounds and matrices. The optimized method was thus appropriate for the simultaneous extraction of 15 widely applied insecticides from three different classes and was shown to provide valuable information on their environmental fate from field-collected aqueous samples. PMID:25608617

  10. Liver δ-aminolevulinate dehydratase activity is inhibited by neonicotinoids and restored by antioxidant agents.

    PubMed

    Sauer, Elisa; Moro, Angela M; Brucker, Natália; Nascimento, Sabrina; Gauer, Bruna; Fracasso, Rafael; Gioda, Adriana; Beck, Ruy; Moreira, José C F; Eifler-Lima, Vera Lucia; Garcia, Solange Cristina

    2014-11-01

    Neonicotinoids represent the most used class of insecticides worldwide, and their precursor, imidacloprid, is the most widely marketed. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of imidacloprid on the activity of hepatic δ-aminolevulinate dehydratase (δ-ALA-D), protective effect of potential antioxidants against this potential effect and presence of chemical elements in the constitution of this pesticide. We observed that δ-ALA-D activity was significantly inhibited by imidacloprid at all concentrations tested in a dose-dependent manner. The IC50 value was obtained and used to evaluate the restoration of the enzymatic activity. δ-ALA-D inhibition was completely restored by addition of dithiotreitol (DTT) and partly by ZnCl2, demonstrating that the inhibition occurs by oxidation of thiol groups and by displacement of the Zn (II), which can be explained by the presence of chemical elements found in the constitution of pesticides. Reduced glutathione (GSH) had the best antioxidant effect against to δ-ALA-D inhibition caused by imidacloprid, followed by curcumin and resveratrol. It is well known that inhibition of the enzyme δ-ALA-D may result in accumulation of its neurotoxic substrate (δ-ALA), in this line, our results suggest that further studies are needed to investigate the possible neurotoxicity induced by neonicotinoids and the involvement of antioxidants in cases of poisoning by neonicotinoids. PMID:25402564

  11. Chronic exposure to neonicotinoids increases neuronal vulnerability to mitochondrial dysfunction in the bumblebee (Bombus terrestris).

    PubMed

    Moffat, Christopher; Pacheco, Joao Goncalves; Sharp, Sheila; Samson, Andrew J; Bollan, Karen A; Huang, Jeffrey; Buckland, Stephen T; Connolly, Christopher N

    2015-05-01

    The global decline in the abundance and diversity of insect pollinators could result from habitat loss, disease, and pesticide exposure. The contribution of the neonicotinoid insecticides (e.g., clothianidin and imidacloprid) to this decline is controversial, and key to understanding their risk is whether the astonishingly low levels found in the nectar and pollen of plants is sufficient to deliver neuroactive levels to their site of action: the bee brain. Here we show that bumblebees (Bombus terrestris audax) fed field levels [10 nM, 2.1 ppb (w/w)] of neonicotinoid accumulate between 4 and 10 nM in their brains within 3 days. Acute (minutes) exposure of cultured neurons to 10 nM clothianidin, but not imidacloprid, causes a nicotinic acetylcholine receptor-dependent rapid mitochondrial depolarization. However, a chronic (2 days) exposure to 1 nM imidacloprid leads to a receptor-dependent increased sensitivity to a normally innocuous level of acetylcholine, which now also causes rapid mitochondrial depolarization in neurons. Finally, colonies exposed to this level of imidacloprid show deficits in colony growth and nest condition compared with untreated colonies. These findings provide a mechanistic explanation for the poor navigation and foraging observed in neonicotinoid treated bumblebee colonies. PMID:25634958

  12. Liver δ-Aminolevulinate Dehydratase Activity is Inhibited by Neonicotinoids and Restored by Antioxidant Agents

    PubMed Central

    Sauer, Elisa; Moro, Angela M.; Brucker, Natália; Nascimento, Sabrina; Gauer, Bruna; Fracasso, Rafael; Gioda, Adriana; Beck, Ruy; Moreira, José C. F.; Eifler-Lima, Vera Lucia; Garcia, Solange Cristina

    2014-01-01

    Neonicotinoids represent the most used class of insecticides worldwide, and their precursor, imidacloprid, is the most widely marketed. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of imidacloprid on the activity of hepatic δ-aminolevulinate dehydratase (δ-ALA-D), protective effect of potential antioxidants against this potential effect and presence of chemical elements in the constitution of this pesticide. We observed that δ-ALA-D activity was significantly inhibited by imidacloprid at all concentrations tested in a dose-dependent manner. The IC50 value was obtained and used to evaluate the restoration of the enzymatic activity. δ-ALA-D inhibition was completely restored by addition of dithiotreitol (DTT) and partly by ZnCl2, demonstrating that the inhibition occurs by oxidation of thiol groups and by displacement of the Zn (II), which can be explained by the presence of chemical elements found in the constitution of pesticides. Reduced glutathione (GSH) had the best antioxidant effect against to δ-ALA-D inhibition caused by imidacloprid, followed by curcumin and resveratrol. It is well known that inhibition of the enzyme δ-ALA-D may result in accumulation of its neurotoxic substrate (δ-ALA), in this line, our results suggest that further studies are needed to investigate the possible neurotoxicity induced by neonicotinoids and the involvement of antioxidants in cases of poisoning by neonicotinoids. PMID:25402564

  13. Insights into the quaternary association of proteins through structure graphs: a case study of lectins

    PubMed Central

    2005-01-01

    The unique three-dimensional structure of both monomeric and oligomeric proteins is encoded in their sequence. The biological functions of proteins are dependent on their tertiary and quaternary structures, and hence it is important to understand the determinants of quaternary association in proteins. Although a large number of investigations have been carried out in this direction, the underlying principles of protein oligomerization are yet to be completely understood. Recently, new insights into this problem have been gained from the analysis of structure graphs of proteins belonging to the legume lectin family. The legume lectins are an interesting family of proteins with very similar tertiary structures but varied quaternary structures. Hence they have become a very good model with which to analyse the role of primary structures in determining the modes of quaternary association. The present review summarizes the results of a legume lectin study as well as those obtained from a similar analysis carried out here on the animal lectins, namely galectins, pentraxins, calnexin, calreticulin and rhesus rotavirus Vp4 sialic-acid-binding domain. The lectin structure graphs have been used to obtain clusters of non-covalently interacting amino acid residues at the intersubunit interfaces. The present study, performed along with traditional sequence alignment methods, has provided the signature sequence motifs for different kinds of quaternary association seen in lectins. Furthermore, the network representation of the lectin oligomers has enabled us to detect the residues which make extensive interactions (‘hubs’) across the oligomeric interfaces that can be targetted for interface-destabilizing mutations. The present review also provides an overview of the methodology involved in representing oligomeric protein structures as connected networks of amino acid residues. Further, it illustrates the potential of such a representation in elucidating the structural

  14. Insights into Medium-chain Acyl-CoA Dehydrogenase Structure by Molecular Dynamics Simulations.

    PubMed

    Bonito, Cátia A; Leandro, Paula; Ventura, Fátima V; Guedes, Rita C

    2016-08-01

    The medium-chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase (MCAD) is a mitochondrial enzyme that catalyzes the first step of mitochondrial fatty acid β-oxidation (mFAO) pathway. Its deficiency is the most common genetic disorder of mFAO. Many of the MCAD disease-causing variants, including the most common p.K304E variant, show loss of function due to protein misfolding. Herein, we used molecular dynamics simulations to provide insights into the structural stability and dynamic behavior of MCAD wild-type (MCADwt) and validate a structure that would allow reliable new studies on its variants. Our results revealed that in both proteins the flavin adenine dinucleotide (FAD) has an important structural role on the tetramer stability and also in maintaining the volume of the enzyme catalytic pockets. We confirmed that the presence of substrate changes the dynamics of the catalytic pockets and increases FAD affinity. A comparison between the porcine MCADwt (pMCADwt) and human MCADwt (hMCADwt) structures revealed that both proteins are essentially similar and that the reversion of the double mutant E376G/T255E of hMCAD enzyme does not affect the structure of the protein neither its behavior in simulation. Our validated hMCADwt structure is crucial for complementing and accelerating the experimental studies aiming for the discovery and development of potential stabilizers of MCAD variants as candidates for the treatment of MCAD deficiency (MCADD). PMID:26992026

  15. Structural and Functional Insights into Small, Glutamine-Rich, Tetratricopeptide Repeat Protein Alpha

    PubMed Central

    Roberts, Joanna D.; Thapaliya, Arjun; Martínez-Lumbreras, Santiago; Krysztofinska, Ewelina M.; Isaacson, Rivka L.

    2015-01-01

    The small glutamine-rich, tetratricopeptide repeat-containing protein alpha (SGTA) is an emerging player in the quality control of secretory and membrane proteins mislocalized to the cytosol, with established roles in tail-anchored (TA) membrane protein biogenesis. SGTA consists of three structural domains with individual functions, an N-terminal dimerization domain that assists protein sorting pathways, a central tetratricopeptide repeat (TPR) domain that mediates interactions with heat-shock proteins, proteasomal, and hormonal receptors, and viral proteins, and a C-terminal glutamine rich region that binds hydrophobic substrates. SGTA has been linked to viral lifecycles and hormone receptor signaling, with implications in the pathogenesis of various disease states. Thus far, a range of biophysical techniques have been employed to characterize SGTA structure in some detail, and to investigate its interactions with binding partners in different biological contexts. A complete description of SGTA structure, together with further investigation into its function as a co-chaperone involved quality control, could provide us with useful insights into its role in maintaining cellular proteostasis, and broaden our understanding of mechanisms underlying associated pathologies. This review describes how some structural features of SGTA have been elucidated, and what this has uncovered about its cellular functions. A brief background on the structure and function of SGTA is given, highlighting its importance to biomedicine and related fields. The current level of knowledge and what remains to be understood about the structure and function of SGTA is summarized, discussing the potential direction of future research. PMID:26734616

  16. Structural insights on two hypothetical secretion chaperones from Xanthomonas axonopodis pv. citri.

    PubMed

    Fattori, Juliana; Prando, Alessandra; Assis, Leandro H P; Aparicio, Ricardo; Tasic, Ljubica

    2011-06-01

    Several Gram-negative bacterial pathogens have developed type III secretion systems (T3SSs) to deliver virulence proteins directly into eukaryotic cells in a process essential for many diseases. The type III secretion processes require customized chaperones with high specificity for binding partners, thus providing the secretion to occur. Due to the very low sequence similarities among secretion chaperones, annotation and discrimination of a great majority of them is extremely difficult and a task with low scores even if genes are encountered that codify for small (<20 kDa) proteins with low pI and a tendency to dimerise. Concerning about this, herein, we present structural features on two hypothetical T3SSs chaperones belonging to plant pathogen Xanthomonas axonopodis pv. citri and suggest how low resolution models based on Small Angle X-ray Scattering patterns can provide new structural insights that could be very helpful in their analysis and posterior classification. PMID:21626158

  17. Crystal Structures of Human and Staphylococcus aureus Pyruvate Carboxylase and Molecular Insights into the Carboxyltransfer Reaction

    SciTech Connect

    Xiang,S.; Tong, L.

    2008-01-01

    Pyruvate carboxylase (PC) catalyzes the biotin-dependent production of oxaloacetate and has important roles in gluconeogenesis, lipogenesis, insulin secretion and other cellular processes. PC contains the biotin carboxylase (BC), carboxyltransferase (CT) and biotin-carboxyl carrier protein (BCCP) domains. We report here the crystal structures at 2.8-Angstroms resolution of full-length PC from Staphylococcus aureus and the C-terminal region (missing only the BC domain) of human PC. A conserved tetrameric association is observed for both enzymes, and our structural and mutagenesis studies reveal a previously uncharacterized domain, the PC tetramerization (PT) domain, which is important for oligomerization. A BCCP domain is located in the active site of the CT domain, providing the first molecular insights into how biotin participates in the carboxyltransfer reaction. There are dramatic differences in domain positions in the monomer and the organization of the tetramer between these enzymes and the PC from Rhizobium etli.

  18. Structural insight into the TRIAP1/PRELI-like domain family of mitochondrial phospholipid transfer complexes

    PubMed Central

    Miliara, Xeni; Garnett, James A; Tatsuta, Takashi; Abid Ali, Ferdos; Baldie, Heather; Pérez-Dorado, Inmaculada; Simpson, Peter; Yague, Ernesto; Langer, Thomas; Matthews, Stephen

    2015-01-01

    The composition of the mitochondrial membrane is important for its architecture and proper function. Mitochondria depend on a tightly regulated supply of phospholipid via intra-mitochondrial synthesis and by direct import from the endoplasmic reticulum. The Ups1/PRELI-like family together with its mitochondrial chaperones (TRIAP1/Mdm35) represent a unique heterodimeric lipid transfer system that is evolutionary conserved from yeast to man. Work presented here provides new atomic resolution insight into the function of a human member of this system. Crystal structures of free TRIAP1 and the TRIAP1–SLMO1 complex reveal how the PRELI domain is chaperoned during import into the intermembrane mitochondrial space. The structural resemblance of PRELI-like domain of SLMO1 with that of mammalian phoshatidylinositol transfer proteins (PITPs) suggest that they share similar lipid transfer mechanisms, in which access to a buried phospholipid-binding cavity is regulated by conformationally adaptable loops. PMID:26071602

  19. Structural insight into the TRIAP1/PRELI-like domain family of mitochondrial phospholipid transfer complexes.

    PubMed

    Miliara, Xeni; Garnett, James A; Tatsuta, Takashi; Abid Ali, Ferdos; Baldie, Heather; Pérez-Dorado, Inmaculada; Simpson, Peter; Yague, Ernesto; Langer, Thomas; Matthews, Stephen

    2015-07-01

    The composition of the mitochondrial membrane is important for its architecture and proper function. Mitochondria depend on a tightly regulated supply of phospholipid via intra-mitochondrial synthesis and by direct import from the endoplasmic reticulum. The Ups1/PRELI-like family together with its mitochondrial chaperones (TRIAP1/Mdm35) represent a unique heterodimeric lipid transfer system that is evolutionary conserved from yeast to man. Work presented here provides new atomic resolution insight into the function of a human member of this system. Crystal structures of free TRIAP1 and the TRIAP1-SLMO1 complex reveal how the PRELI domain is chaperoned during import into the intermembrane mitochondrial space. The structural resemblance of PRELI-like domain of SLMO1 with that of mammalian phoshatidylinositol transfer proteins (PITPs) suggest that they share similar lipid transfer mechanisms, in which access to a buried phospholipid-binding cavity is regulated by conformationally adaptable loops. PMID:26071602

  20. Structural Investigations of Hydrogen Cyanide Polymers: New Insights Using TMAH Thermochemolysis/GC-MS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Minard, Robert D.; Hatcher, Patrick G.; Gourley, Robert C.; Matthews, Clifford N.

    1998-10-01

    Hydrogen cyanide polymers form spontaneously from HCN and traces of base catalysts. It is probable that these polymers played an important role in the early stages of chemical evolution. Nevertheless, their full structural characterization has still not been accomplished. A number of mass spectrometric methods have now been applied to this structural problem including FAB-MS, thermal desorption EI-MS, ESI-MS, APCI-MS and off-line TMAH thermochemolysis/GC-MS. This latter method causes bond cleavage and in situ methylation producing a suite of products which provides valuable insight into the substructural features of HCN polymers and also promises to serve as a sensitive diagnostic tool for detecting the presence of HCN polymers in samples from diverse sources.

  1. Structural Insights into the Anti-methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) Activity of Ceftobiprole*

    PubMed Central

    Lovering, Andrew L.; Gretes, Michael C.; Safadi, Susan S.; Danel, Franck; de Castro, Liza; Page, Malcolm G. P.; Strynadka, Natalie C. J.

    2012-01-01

    Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is an antibiotic-resistant strain of S. aureus afflicting hospitals and communities worldwide. Of greatest concern is its development of resistance to current last-line-of-defense antibiotics; new therapeutics are urgently needed to combat this pathogen. Ceftobiprole is a recently developed, latest generation cephalosporin and has been the first to show activity against MRSA by inhibiting essential peptidoglycan transpeptidases, including the β-lactam resistance determinant PBP2a, from MRSA. Here we present the structure of the complex of ceftobiprole bound to PBP2a. This structure provides the first look at the molecular details of an effective β-lactam-resistant PBP interaction, leading to new insights into the mechanism of ceftobiprole efficacy against MRSA. PMID:22815485

  2. Biochemical and Structural Insights into Doublecortin-like Kinase Domain 1.

    PubMed

    Patel, Onisha; Dai, Weiwen; Mentzel, Mareike; Griffin, Michael D W; Serindoux, Juliette; Gay, Yoann; Fischer, Stefanie; Sterle, Shoukat; Kropp, Ashleigh; Burns, Christopher J; Ernst, Matthias; Buchert, Michael; Lucet, Isabelle S

    2016-09-01

    Doublecortin-like kinase 1 (DCLK1) is a serine/threonine kinase that belongs to the family of microtubule-associated proteins. Originally identified for its role in neurogenesis, DCLK1 has recently been shown to regulate biological processes outside of the CNS. DCLK1 is among the 15 most common putative driver genes for gastric cancers and is highly mutated across various other human cancers. However, our present understanding of how DCLK1 dysfunction leads to tumorigenesis is limited. Here, we provide evidence that DCLK1 kinase activity negatively regulates microtubule polymerization. We present the crystal structure of the DCLK1 kinase domain at 1.7 Å resolution, providing detailed insight into the ATP-binding site that will serve as a framework for future drug design. This structure also allowed for the mapping of cancer-causing mutations within the kinase domain, suggesting that a loss of kinase function may contribute to tumorigenesis. PMID:27545623

  3. Structural insights into recognition of acetylated histone ligands by the BRPF1 bromodomain

    PubMed Central

    Lubula, Mulu Y.; Eckenroth, Brian E.; Carlson, Samuel; Poplawski, Amanda; Chruszcz, Maksymilian; Glass, Karen C.

    2014-01-01

    BRPF1 is part of the MOZ HAT complex and contains a unique combination of domains typically found in chromatin-associated factors, which include PHD fingers, a bromodomain and a PWWP domain. Bromodomains are conserved structural motifs generally known to recognize acetylated histones, and the BRPF1 bromodomain preferentially selects for H2AK5ac, H4K12ac and H3K14ac. We solved the X-ray crystal structures of the BRPF1 bromodomain in complex with the H2AK5ac and H4K12ac histone peptides. Site-directed mutagenesis on residues in the BRPF1 bromodomain-binding pocket was carried out to investigate the contribution of specific amino acids on ligand binding. Our results provide critical insights into the molecular mechanism of ligand binding by the BRPF1 bromodomain, and reveal that ordered water molecules are an essential component driving ligand recognition. PMID:25281266

  4. Protein Fibrillar Nanopolymers: Molecular-Level Insights into Their Structural, Physical and Mechanical Properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trusova, Valeriya M.

    2015-09-01

    Amyloid fibrils represent a generic class of mechanically strong and stable biomaterials with extremely advantageous properties. Although amyloids were initially associated only with severe neurological disorders, the role of these structures nowadays is shifting from health debilitating to highly beneficial both in biomedical and technological aspects. Intensive involvement of fibrillar assemblies into the wide range of pathogenic and functional processes strongly necessitate the molecular level characterization of the structural, physical and elastic features of protein nanofibrils. In the present contribution, we made an attempt to highlight the up-to-date progress in the understanding of amyloid properties from the polymer physics standpoint. The fundamental insights into protein fibril behavior are essential not only for development of therapeutic strategies to combat the protein misfolding disorders but also for rational and precise design of novel biodegradable protein-based nanopolymers.

  5. Experimental Insights into the Origin of Defect-Structured Hibonites Found in Meteorites

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Han. J.; Keller, L. P.; Danielson, L. R.

    2016-01-01

    Hibonite (CaAl12O19) is a primary, highly refractory phase occurring in many Ca-Al-rich inclusions (CAIs). Previous microstructural studies of hibonite in CAIs and their Wark-Lovering (WL) rims showed the presence of numerous stacking defects in hibonites. These defects are interpreted as the modification of the stacking sequences of spinel and Ca-containing blocks within the ideal hexagonal hibonite structure due to the presence of wider spinel blocks [3], as shown by experimental studies of reaction-sintered compounds in the CaO-Al2O3 system. We performed a series of experiments in the CaO-Al2O3-MgO system in order to provide additional in-sights into the formation processes and conditions of defect-structured hibonites found in meteorites.

  6. Structural insights into the lipoprotein outer membrane regulator of penicillin-binding protein 1B.

    PubMed

    King, Dustin T; Lameignere, Emilie; Strynadka, Natalie C J

    2014-07-01

    In bacteria, the synthesis of the protective peptidoglycan sacculus is a dynamic process that is tightly regulated at multiple levels. Recently, the lipoprotein co-factor LpoB has been found essential for the in vivo function of the major peptidoglycan synthase PBP1b in Enterobacteriaceae. Here, we reveal the crystal structures of Salmonella enterica and Escherichia coli LpoB. The LpoB protein can be modeled as a ball and tether, consisting of a disordered N-terminal region followed by a compact globular C-terminal domain. Taken together, our structural data allow us to propose new insights into LpoB-mediated regulation of peptidoglycan synthesis. PMID:24808177

  7. A Locomotor Deficit Induced by Sublethal Doses of Pyrethroid and Neonicotinoid Insecticides in the Honeybee Apis mellifera.

    PubMed

    Charreton, Mercédès; Decourtye, Axel; Henry, Mickaël; Rodet, Guy; Sandoz, Jean-Christophe; Charnet, Pierre; Collet, Claude

    2015-01-01

    The toxicity of pesticides used in agriculture towards non-targeted organisms and especially pollinators has recently drawn the attention from a broad scientific community. Increased honeybee mortality observed worldwide certainly contributes to this interest. The potential role of several neurotoxic insecticides in triggering or potentiating honeybee mortality was considered, in particular phenylpyrazoles and neonicotinoids, given that they are widely used and highly toxic for insects. Along with their ability to kill insects at lethal doses, they can compromise survival at sublethal doses by producing subtle deleterious effects. In this study, we compared the bee's locomotor ability, which is crucial for many tasks within the hive (e.g. cleaning brood cells, feeding larvae…), before and after an acute sublethal exposure to one insecticide belonging to the two insecticide classes, fipronil and thiamethoxam. Additionally, we examined the locomotor ability after exposure to pyrethroids, an older chemical insecticide class still widely used and known to be highly toxic to bees as well. Our study focused on young bees (day 1 after emergence) since (i) few studies are available on locomotion at this stage and (ii) in recent years, pesticides have been reported to accumulate in different hive matrices, where young bees undergo their early development. At sublethal doses (SLD48h, i.e. causing no mortality at 48 h), three pyrethroids, namely cypermethrin (2.5 ng/bee), tetramethrin (70 ng/bee), tau-fluvalinate (33 ng/bee) and the neonicotinoid thiamethoxam (3.8 ng/bee) caused a locomotor deficit in honeybees. While the SLD48h of fipronil (a phenylpyrazole, 0.5 ng/bee) had no measurable effect on locomotion, we observed high mortality several days after exposure, an effect that was not observed with the other insecticides. Although locomotor deficits observed in the sublethal range of pyrethroids and thiamethoxam would suggest deleterious effects in the field, the case of

  8. A Locomotor Deficit Induced by Sublethal Doses of Pyrethroid and Neonicotinoid Insecticides in the Honeybee Apis mellifera

    PubMed Central

    Charreton, Mercédès; Decourtye, Axel; Henry, Mickaël; Rodet, Guy; Sandoz, Jean-Christophe; Charnet, Pierre; Collet, Claude

    2015-01-01

    The toxicity of pesticides used in agriculture towards non-targeted organisms and especially pollinators has recently drawn the attention from a broad scientific community. Increased honeybee mortality observed worldwide certainly contributes to this interest. The potential role of several neurotoxic insecticides in triggering or potentiating honeybee mortality was considered, in particular phenylpyrazoles and neonicotinoids, given that they are widely used and highly toxic for insects. Along with their ability to kill insects at lethal doses, they can compromise survival at sublethal doses by producing subtle deleterious effects. In this study, we compared the bee’s locomotor ability, which is crucial for many tasks within the hive (e.g. cleaning brood cells, feeding larvae…), before and after an acute sublethal exposure to one insecticide belonging to the two insecticide classes, fipronil and thiamethoxam. Additionally, we examined the locomotor ability after exposure to pyrethroids, an older chemical insecticide class still widely used and known to be highly toxic to bees as well. Our study focused on young bees (day 1 after emergence) since (i) few studies are available on locomotion at this stage and (ii) in recent years, pesticides have been reported to accumulate in different hive matrices, where young bees undergo their early development. At sublethal doses (SLD48h, i.e. causing no mortality at 48h), three pyrethroids, namely cypermethrin (2.5 ng/bee), tetramethrin (70 ng/bee), tau-fluvalinate (33 ng/bee) and the neonicotinoid thiamethoxam (3.8 ng/bee) caused a locomotor deficit in honeybees. While the SLD48h of fipronil (a phenylpyrazole, 0.5 ng/bee) had no measurable effect on locomotion, we observed high mortality several days after exposure, an effect that was not observed with the other insecticides. Although locomotor deficits observed in the sublethal range of pyrethroids and thiamethoxam would suggest deleterious effects in the field, the case

  9. The effect of application method on the temporal and spatial distribution of neonicotinoid insecticides in greenhouse zinnia and impact on aphid populations

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Greenhouse trials were designed to evaluate the effect the application technique would have on temporal and spatial movement of neonicotinoid insecticides imidacloprid and thiamethoxam through plant tissue. Mature Zinnia elegans plants were treated by either a soil drench of neonicotinoid insectici...

  10. Structural insights into the dual-targeting mechanism of Nutlin-3

    SciTech Connect

    Shin, Jae-Sun; Ha, Ji-Hyang; He, Fahu; Muto, Yutaka; Ryu, Kyoung-Seok; Yoon, Ho Sup; Kang, Sunghyun; Park, Sung Goo; Park, Byoung Chul; Choi, Sang-Un; Chi, Seung-Wook

    2012-03-30

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Universal binding of Nutlin-3 with diverse anti-apoptotic Bcl-2 family proteins. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Nutlin-3 binds to the BH3 peptide-binding grooves of Bcl-2 family proteins. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer A conserved Bcl-X{sub L} binding mechanism of the Nutlin-3 and BH3-mimetic compounds. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer A molecular basis for the transcription-independent apoptosis by Nutlin-3. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Structural insights into the dual-targeting mechanism of Nutlin-3. -- Abstract: Multi-targeting therapy is an emerging strategy of drug discovery to improve therapeutic efficacy, safety and resistance profiles. In this study, we monitored the binding of a potent MDM2 inhibitor Nutlin-3 with anti-apoptotic Bcl-2 family proteins using NMR spectroscopy. Our results showed the universal binding of Nutlin-3 with diverse anti-apoptotic Bcl-2 family proteins. Taken together with the binding data for Nutlin-3 analogs, the structural model of the Bcl-X{sub L}/Nutlin-3 complex showed that the binding mode of Nutlin-3 resembles that of the Bcl-X{sub L}/Bcl-2 inhibitors, suggesting the molecular mechanism of transcription-independent mitochondrial apoptosis by Nutlin-3. Finally, our structural comparison provides structural insights into the dual-targeting mechanism of how Nutlin-3 can bind to two different target proteins, MDM2 and anti-apoptotic Bcl-2 family proteins in a similar manner.