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Sample records for reveals evolutionarily conserved

  1. Auditory sequence processing reveals evolutionarily conserved regions of frontal cortex in macaques and humans.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Benjamin; Kikuchi, Yukiko; Sun, Li; Hunter, David; Dick, Frederic; Smith, Kenny; Thiele, Alexander; Griffiths, Timothy D; Marslen-Wilson, William D; Petkov, Christopher I

    2015-01-01

    An evolutionary account of human language as a neurobiological system must distinguish between human-unique neurocognitive processes supporting language and evolutionarily conserved, domain-general processes that can be traced back to our primate ancestors. Neuroimaging studies across species may determine whether candidate neural processes are supported by homologous, functionally conserved brain areas or by different neurobiological substrates. Here we use functional magnetic resonance imaging in Rhesus macaques and humans to examine the brain regions involved in processing the ordering relationships between auditory nonsense words in rule-based sequences. We find that key regions in the human ventral frontal and opercular cortex have functional counterparts in the monkey brain. These regions are also known to be associated with initial stages of human syntactic processing. This study raises the possibility that certain ventral frontal neural systems, which play a significant role in language function in modern humans, originally evolved to support domain-general abilities involved in sequence processing. PMID:26573340

  2. Auditory sequence processing reveals evolutionarily conserved regions of frontal cortex in macaques and humans

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, Benjamin; Kikuchi, Yukiko; Sun, Li; Hunter, David; Dick, Frederic; Smith, Kenny; Thiele, Alexander; Griffiths, Timothy D.; Marslen-Wilson, William D.; Petkov, Christopher I.

    2015-01-01

    An evolutionary account of human language as a neurobiological system must distinguish between human-unique neurocognitive processes supporting language and evolutionarily conserved, domain-general processes that can be traced back to our primate ancestors. Neuroimaging studies across species may determine whether candidate neural processes are supported by homologous, functionally conserved brain areas or by different neurobiological substrates. Here we use functional magnetic resonance imaging in Rhesus macaques and humans to examine the brain regions involved in processing the ordering relationships between auditory nonsense words in rule-based sequences. We find that key regions in the human ventral frontal and opercular cortex have functional counterparts in the monkey brain. These regions are also known to be associated with initial stages of human syntactic processing. This study raises the possibility that certain ventral frontal neural systems, which play a significant role in language function in modern humans, originally evolved to support domain-general abilities involved in sequence processing. PMID:26573340

  3. Unique C. elegans telomeric overhang structures reveal the evolutionarily conserved properties of telomeric DNA

    PubMed Central

    Školáková, Petra; Foldynová-Trantírková, Silvie; Bednářová, Klára; Fiala, Radovan; Vorlíčková, Michaela; Trantírek, Lukáš

    2015-01-01

    There are two basic mechanisms that are associated with the maintenance of the telomere length, which endows cancer cells with unlimited proliferative potential. One mechanism, referred to as alternative lengthening of telomeres (ALT), accounts for approximately 10–15% of all human cancers. Tumours engaged in the ALT pathway are characterised by the presence of the single stranded 5′-C-rich telomeric overhang (C-overhang). This recently identified hallmark of ALT cancers distinguishes them from healthy tissues and renders the C-overhang as a clear target for anticancer therapy. We analysed structures of the 5′-C-rich and 3′-G-rich telomeric overhangs from human and Caenorhabditis elegans, the recently established multicellular in vivo model of ALT tumours. We show that the telomeric DNA from C. elegans and humans forms fundamentally different secondary structures. The unique structural characteristics of C. elegans telomeric DNA that are distinct not only from those of humans but also from those of other multicellular eukaryotes allowed us to identify evolutionarily conserved properties of telomeric DNA. Differences in structural organisation of the telomeric DNA between the C. elegans and human impose limitations on the use of the C. elegans as an ALT tumour model. PMID:25855805

  4. Unique C. elegans telomeric overhang structures reveal the evolutionarily conserved properties of telomeric DNA.

    PubMed

    Školáková, Petra; Foldynová-Trantírková, Silvie; Bednářová, Klára; Fiala, Radovan; Vorlíčková, Michaela; Trantírek, Lukáš

    2015-05-19

    There are two basic mechanisms that are associated with the maintenance of the telomere length, which endows cancer cells with unlimited proliferative potential. One mechanism, referred to as alternative lengthening of telomeres (ALT), accounts for approximately 10-15% of all human cancers. Tumours engaged in the ALT pathway are characterised by the presence of the single stranded 5'-C-rich telomeric overhang (C-overhang). This recently identified hallmark of ALT cancers distinguishes them from healthy tissues and renders the C-overhang as a clear target for anticancer therapy. We analysed structures of the 5'-C-rich and 3'-G-rich telomeric overhangs from human and Caenorhabditis elegans, the recently established multicellular in vivo model of ALT tumours. We show that the telomeric DNA from C. elegans and humans forms fundamentally different secondary structures. The unique structural characteristics of C. elegans telomeric DNA that are distinct not only from those of humans but also from those of other multicellular eukaryotes allowed us to identify evolutionarily conserved properties of telomeric DNA. Differences in structural organisation of the telomeric DNA between the C. elegans and human impose limitations on the use of the C. elegans as an ALT tumour model. PMID:25855805

  5. Systems biology approach reveals possible evolutionarily conserved moonlighting functions for enolase.

    PubMed

    Paludo, Gabriela Prado; Lorenzatto, Karina Rodrigues; Bonatto, Diego; Ferreira, Henrique Bunselmeyer

    2015-10-01

    Glycolytic enzymes, such as enolase, have been described as multifunctional complex proteins that also display non-glycolytic activities, termed moonlighting functions. Although enolase multifunctionality has been described for several organisms, the conservation of enolase alternative functions through different phyla has not been explored with more details. A useful strategy to investigate moonlighting functions is the use of systems biology tools, which allow the prediction of protein functions/interactions by graph design and analysis. In this work, available information from protein-protein interaction (PPI) databases were used to design enolase PPI networks for four eukaryotic organisms, namely Homo sapiens, Drosophila melanogaster, Caenorhabditis elegans, and Saccharomyces cerevisiae, covering a wide spectrum of this domain of life. PPI networks with number of nodes ranging from 140 to 411 and up to 15,855 connections were generated, and modularity and centrality analyses, and functional enrichment were performed for all of them. The performed analyses showed that enolase is a central node within the networks, and that, in addition to its canonical interactions with proteins related to glycolysis and energetic metabolism, it is also part of protein clusters related to different biological processes, like transcription, development, and apoptosis, among others. Some of these non-glycolytic clusters, are partially conserved between networks, in terms of overall sharing of orthologs, overall cluster structure, and/or at the levels of key regulatory proteins within clusters. Overall, our results provided evidences of enolase multifunctionality and evolutionary conservation of enolase PPIs at all these levels. PMID:25978602

  6. The presence of disulfide bonds reveals an evolutionarily conserved mechanism involved in mitochondrial protein translocase assembly

    PubMed Central

    Wrobel, Lidia; Sokol, Anna M.; Chojnacka, Magdalena; Chacinska, Agnieszka

    2016-01-01

    Disulfide bond formation is crucial for the biogenesis and structure of many proteins that are localized in the intermembrane space of mitochondria. The importance of disulfide bond formation within mitochondrial proteins was extended beyond soluble intermembrane space proteins. Tim22, a membrane protein and core component of the mitochondrial translocase TIM22, forms an intramolecular disulfide bond in yeast. Tim22 belongs to the Tim17/Tim22/Tim23 family of protein translocases. Here, we present evidence of the high evolutionary conservation of disulfide bond formation in Tim17 and Tim22 among fungi and metazoa. Topological models are proposed that include the location of disulfide bonds relative to the predicted transmembrane regions. Yeast and human Tim22 variants that are not oxidized do not properly integrate into the membrane complex. Moreover, the lack of Tim17 oxidation disrupts the TIM23 translocase complex. This underlines the importance of disulfide bond formation for mature translocase assembly through membrane stabilization of weak transmembrane domains. PMID:27265872

  7. Dual origins of the mammalian accessory olfactory bulb revealed by an evolutionarily conserved migratory stream.

    PubMed

    Huilgol, Dhananjay; Udin, Susan; Shimogori, Tomomi; Saha, Bhaskar; Roy, Achira; Aizawa, Shinichi; Hevner, Robert F; Meyer, Gundela; Ohshima, Toshio; Pleasure, Samuel J; Zhao, Yangu; Tole, Shubha

    2013-02-01

    The accessory olfactory bulb (AOB) is a critical olfactory structure that has been implicated in mediating social behavior. It receives input from the vomeronasal organ and projects to targets in the amygdaloid complex. Its anterior and posterior components (aAOB and pAOB) display molecular, connectional and functional segregation in processing reproductive and defensive and aggressive behaviors, respectively. We observed a dichotomy in the development of the projection neurons of the aAOB and pAOB in mice. We found that they had distinct sites of origin and that different regulatory molecules were required for their specification and migration. aAOB neurons arose locally in the rostral telencephalon, similar to main olfactory bulb neurons. In contrast, pAOB neurons arose caudally, from the neuroepithelium of the diencephalic-telencephalic boundary, from which they migrated rostrally to reach their destination. This unusual origin and migration is conserved in Xenopus, providing an insight into the origin of a key component of this system in evolution. PMID:23292680

  8. Sirtuins Are Evolutionarily Conserved Viral Restriction Factors

    PubMed Central

    Koyuncu, Emre; Budayeva, Hanna G.; Miteva, Yana V.; Ricci, Dante P.; Silhavy, Thomas J.; Shenk, Thomas

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT The seven human sirtuins are a family of ubiquitously expressed and evolutionarily conserved NAD+-dependent deacylases/mono-ADP ribosyltransferases that regulate numerous cellular and organismal functions, including metabolism, cell cycle, and longevity. Here, we report the discovery that all seven sirtuins have broad-range antiviral properties. We demonstrate that small interfering RNA (siRNA)-mediated knockdown of individual sirtuins and drug-mediated inhibition of sirtuin enzymatic activity increase the production of virus progeny in infected human cells. This impact on virus growth is observed for both DNA and RNA viruses. Importantly, sirtuin-activating drugs inhibit the replication of diverse viruses, as we demonstrate for human cytomegalovirus, a slowly replicating DNA virus, and influenza A (H1N1) virus, an RNA virus that multiplies rapidly. Furthermore, sirtuin defense functions are evolutionarily conserved, since CobB, the sirtuin homologue in Escherichia coli, protects against bacteriophages. Altogether, our findings establish sirtuins as broad-spectrum and evolutionarily conserved components of the immune defense system, providing a framework for elucidating a new set of host cell defense mechanisms and developing sirtuin modulators with antiviral activity. PMID:25516616

  9. Functional analysis of the Arabidopsis PLDZ2 promoter reveals an evolutionarily conserved low-Pi-responsive transcriptional enhancer element

    PubMed Central

    Oropeza-Aburto, Araceli; Cruz-Ramírez, Alfredo; Acevedo-Hernández, Gustavo J.; Pérez-Torres, Claudia-Anahí; Caballero-Pérez, Juan; Herrera-Estrella, Luis

    2012-01-01

    Plants have evolved a plethora of responses to cope with phosphate (Pi) deficiency, including the transcriptional activation of a large set of genes. Among Pi-responsive genes, the expression of the Arabidopsis phospholipase DZ2 (PLDZ2) is activated to participate in the degradation of phospholipids in roots in order to release Pi to support other cellular activities. A deletion analysis was performed to identify the regions determining the strength, tissue-specific expression, and Pi responsiveness of this regulatory region. This study also reports the identification and characterization of a transcriptional enhancer element that is present in the PLDZ2 promoter and able to confer Pi responsiveness to a minimal, inactive 35S promoter. This enhancer also shares the cytokinin and sucrose responsive properties observed for the intact PLDZ2 promoter. The EZ2 element contains two P1BS motifs, each of which is the DNA binding site of transcription factor PHR1. Mutation analysis showed that the P1BS motifs present in EZ2 are necessary but not sufficient for the enhancer function, revealing the importance of adjacent sequences. The structural organization of EZ2 is conserved in the orthologous genes of at least eight families of rosids, suggesting that architectural features such as the distance between the two P1BS motifs are also important for the regulatory properties of this enhancer element. PMID:22210906

  10. Evolutionarily conserved sequences on human chromosome 21

    SciTech Connect

    Frazer, Kelly A.; Sheehan, John B.; Stokowski, Renee P.; Chen, Xiyin; Hosseini, Roya; Cheng, Jan-Fang; Fodor, Stephen P.A.; Cox, David R.; Patil, Nila

    2001-09-01

    Comparison of human sequences with the DNA of other mammals is an excellent means of identifying functional elements in the human genome. Here we describe the utility of high-density oligonucleotide arrays as a rapid approach for comparing human sequences with the DNA of multiple species whose sequences are not presently available. High-density arrays representing approximately 22.5 Mb of nonrepetitive human chromosome 21 sequence were synthesized and then hybridized with mouse and dog DNA to identify sequences conserved between humans and mice (human-mouse elements) and between humans and dogs (human-dog elements). Our data show that sequence comparison of multiple species provides a powerful empiric method for identifying actively conserved elements in the human genome. A large fraction of these evolutionarily conserved elements are present in regions on chromosome 21 that do not encode known genes.

  11. An evolutionarily conserved pathway controls proteasome homeostasis.

    PubMed

    Rousseau, Adrien; Bertolotti, Anne

    2016-08-11

    The proteasome is essential for the selective degradation of most cellular proteins, but how cells maintain adequate amounts of proteasome is unclear. Here we show that there is an evolutionarily conserved signalling pathway controlling proteasome homeostasis. Central to this pathway is TORC1, the inhibition of which induced all known yeast 19S regulatory particle assembly-chaperones (RACs), as well as proteasome subunits. Downstream of TORC1 inhibition, the yeast mitogen-activated protein kinase, Mpk1, acts to increase the supply of RACs and proteasome subunits under challenging conditions in order to maintain proteasomal degradation and cell viability. This adaptive pathway was evolutionarily conserved, with mTOR and ERK5 controlling the levels of the four mammalian RACs and proteasome abundance. Thus, the central growth and stress controllers, TORC1 and Mpk1/ERK5, endow cells with a rapid and vital adaptive response to adjust proteasome abundance in response to the rising needs of cells. Enhancing this pathway may be a useful therapeutic approach for diseases resulting from impaired proteasomal degradation. PMID:27462806

  12. Evolutionarily Conserved Herpesviral Protein Interaction Networks

    PubMed Central

    Fossum, Even; Friedel, Caroline C.; Rajagopala, Seesandra V.; Titz, Björn; Baiker, Armin; Schmidt, Tina; Kraus, Theo; Stellberger, Thorsten; Rutenberg, Christiane; Suthram, Silpa; Bandyopadhyay, Sourav; Rose, Dietlind; von Brunn, Albrecht; Uhlmann, Mareike; Zeretzke, Christine; Dong, Yu-An; Boulet, Hélène; Koegl, Manfred; Bailer, Susanne M.; Koszinowski, Ulrich; Ideker, Trey; Uetz, Peter; Zimmer, Ralf; Haas, Jürgen

    2009-01-01

    Herpesviruses constitute a family of large DNA viruses widely spread in vertebrates and causing a variety of different diseases. They possess dsDNA genomes ranging from 120 to 240 kbp encoding between 70 to 170 open reading frames. We previously reported the protein interaction networks of two herpesviruses, varicella-zoster virus (VZV) and Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV). In this study, we systematically tested three additional herpesvirus species, herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1), murine cytomegalovirus and Epstein-Barr virus, for protein interactions in order to be able to perform a comparative analysis of all three herpesvirus subfamilies. We identified 735 interactions by genome-wide yeast-two-hybrid screens (Y2H), and, together with the interactomes of VZV and KSHV, included a total of 1,007 intraviral protein interactions in the analysis. Whereas a large number of interactions have not been reported previously, we were able to identify a core set of highly conserved protein interactions, like the interaction between HSV-1 UL33 with the nuclear egress proteins UL31/UL34. Interactions were conserved between orthologous proteins despite generally low sequence similarity, suggesting that function may be more conserved than sequence. By combining interactomes of different species we were able to systematically address the low coverage of the Y2H system and to extract biologically relevant interactions which were not evident from single species. PMID:19730696

  13. Evolutionarily conserved phenylpropanoid pattern on angiosperm pollen.

    PubMed

    Fellenberg, Christin; Vogt, Thomas

    2015-04-01

    The male gametophyte of higher plants appears as a solid box containing the essentials to transmit genetic material to the next generation. These consist of haploid generative cells that are required for reproduction, and an invasive vegetative cell producing the pollen tube, both mechanically protected by a rigid polymer, the pollen wall, and surrounded by a hydrophobic pollen coat. This coat mediates the direct contact to the biotic and abiotic environments. It contains a mixture of compounds required not only for fertilization but also for protection against biotic and abiotic stressors. Among its metabolites, the structural characteristics of two types of phenylpropanoids, hydroxycinnamic acid amides and flavonol glycosides, are highly conserved in Angiosperm pollen. Structural and functional aspects of these compounds will be discussed. PMID:25739656

  14. Evolutionarily Conserved, Multitasking TRP Channels: Lessons from Worms and Flies

    PubMed Central

    Venkatachalam, Kartik; Luo, Junjie; Montell, Craig

    2015-01-01

    The Transient Receptor Potential (TRP) channel family is comprised of a large group of cation-permeable channels, which display an extraordinary diversity of roles in sensory signaling. TRPs allow animals to detect chemicals, mechanical force, light, and changes in temperature. Consequently, these channels control a plethora of animal behaviors. Moreover, their functions are not limited to the classical senses, as they are cellular sensors, which are critical for ionic homeostasis and metabolism. Two genetically tractable invertebrate model organisms, Caenorhabditis elegans and Drosophila melanogaster, have led the way in revealing a wide array of sensory roles and behaviors that depend on TRP channels. Two overriding themes have emerged from these studies. First, TRPs are multitasking proteins, and second, many functions and modes of activation of these channels are evolutionarily conserved, including some that were formerly thought to be unique to invertebrates, such as phototransduction. Thus, worms and flies offer the potential to decipher roles for mammalian TRPs, which would otherwise not be suspected. PMID:24961975

  15. Protection of CpG islands from DNA methylation is DNA-encoded and evolutionarily conserved.

    PubMed

    Long, Hannah K; King, Hamish W; Patient, Roger K; Odom, Duncan T; Klose, Robert J

    2016-08-19

    DNA methylation is a repressive epigenetic modification that covers vertebrate genomes. Regions known as CpG islands (CGIs), which are refractory to DNA methylation, are often associated with gene promoters and play central roles in gene regulation. Yet how CGIs in their normal genomic context evade the DNA methylation machinery and whether these mechanisms are evolutionarily conserved remains enigmatic. To address these fundamental questions we exploited a transchromosomic animal model and genomic approaches to understand how the hypomethylated state is formed in vivo and to discover whether mechanisms governing CGI formation are evolutionarily conserved. Strikingly, insertion of a human chromosome into mouse revealed that promoter-associated CGIs are refractory to DNA methylation regardless of host species, demonstrating that DNA sequence plays a central role in specifying the hypomethylated state through evolutionarily conserved mechanisms. In contrast, elements distal to gene promoters exhibited more variable methylation between host species, uncovering a widespread dependence on nucleotide frequency and occupancy of DNA-binding transcription factors in shaping the DNA methylation landscape away from gene promoters. This was exemplified by young CpG rich lineage-restricted repeat sequences that evaded DNA methylation in the absence of co-evolved mechanisms targeting methylation to these sequences, and species specific DNA binding events that protected against DNA methylation in CpG poor regions. Finally, transplantation of mouse chromosomal fragments into the evolutionarily distant zebrafish uncovered the existence of a mechanistically conserved and DNA-encoded logic which shapes CGI formation across vertebrate species. PMID:27084945

  16. Epigenetic Pattern on the Human Y Chromosome Is Evolutionarily Conserved

    PubMed Central

    Meng, Hao; Agbagwa, Ikechukwu O.; Wang, Ling-Xiang; Wang, Yingzhi; Yan, Shi; Ren, Shancheng; Sun, Yinghao; Pei, Gang; Liu, Xin; Liu, Jiang; Jin, Li; Li, Hui; Sun, Yingli

    2016-01-01

    DNA methylation plays an important role for mammalian development. However, it is unclear whether the DNA methylation pattern is evolutionarily conserved. The Y chromosome serves as a powerful tool for the study of human evolution because it is transferred between males. In this study, based on deep-rooted pedigrees and the latest Y chromosome phylogenetic tree, we performed epigenetic pattern analysis of the Y chromosome from 72 donors. By comparing their respective DNA methylation level, we found that the DNA methylation pattern on the Y chromosome was stable among family members and haplogroups. Interestingly, two haplogroup-specific methylation sites were found, which were both genotype-dependent. Moreover, the African and Asian samples also had similar DNA methylation pattern with a remote divergence time. Our findings indicated that the DNA methylation pattern on the Y chromosome was conservative during human male history. PMID:26760298

  17. Epigenetic Pattern on the Human Y Chromosome Is Evolutionarily Conserved.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Minjie; Wang, Chuan-Chao; Yang, Caiyun; Meng, Hao; Agbagwa, Ikechukwu O; Wang, Ling-Xiang; Wang, Yingzhi; Yan, Shi; Ren, Shancheng; Sun, Yinghao; Pei, Gang; Liu, Xin; Liu, Jiang; Jin, Li; Li, Hui; Sun, Yingli

    2016-01-01

    DNA methylation plays an important role for mammalian development. However, it is unclear whether the DNA methylation pattern is evolutionarily conserved. The Y chromosome serves as a powerful tool for the study of human evolution because it is transferred between males. In this study, based on deep-rooted pedigrees and the latest Y chromosome phylogenetic tree, we performed epigenetic pattern analysis of the Y chromosome from 72 donors. By comparing their respective DNA methylation level, we found that the DNA methylation pattern on the Y chromosome was stable among family members and haplogroups. Interestingly, two haplogroup-specific methylation sites were found, which were both genotype-dependent. Moreover, the African and Asian samples also had similar DNA methylation pattern with a remote divergence time. Our findings indicated that the DNA methylation pattern on the Y chromosome was conservative during human male history. PMID:26760298

  18. Expression of human Cfdp1 gene in Drosophila reveals new insights into the function of the evolutionarily conserved BCNT protein family

    PubMed Central

    Messina, Giovanni; Atterrato, Maria Teresa; Fanti, Laura; Giordano, Ennio; Dimitri, Patrizio

    2016-01-01

    The Bucentaur (BCNT) protein family is widely distributed in eukaryotes and is characterized by a highly conserved C-terminal domain. This family was identified two decades ago in ruminants, but its role(s) remained largely unknown. Investigating cellular functions and mechanism of action of BCNT proteins is challenging, because they have been implicated in human craniofacial development. Recently, we found that YETI, the D. melanogaster BCNT, is a chromatin factor that participates to H2A.V deposition. Here we report the effects of in vivo expression of CFDP1, the human BCNT protein, in Drosophila melanogaster. We show that CFDP1, similarly to YETI, binds to chromatin and its expression results in a wide range of abnormalities highly reminiscent of those observed in Yeti null mutants. This indicates that CFDP1 expressed in flies behaves in a dominant negative fashion disrupting the YETI function. Moreover, GST pull-down provides evidence indicating that 1) both YETI and CFDP1 undergo homodimerization and 2) YETI and CFDP1 physically interact each other by forming inactive heterodimers that would trigger the observed dominant-negative effect. Overall, our findings highlight unanticipated evidences suggesting that homodimerization mediated by the BCNT domain is integral to the chromatin functions of BCNT proteins. PMID:27151176

  19. Expression of human Cfdp1 gene in Drosophila reveals new insights into the function of the evolutionarily conserved BCNT protein family.

    PubMed

    Messina, Giovanni; Atterrato, Maria Teresa; Fanti, Laura; Giordano, Ennio; Dimitri, Patrizio

    2016-01-01

    The Bucentaur (BCNT) protein family is widely distributed in eukaryotes and is characterized by a highly conserved C-terminal domain. This family was identified two decades ago in ruminants, but its role(s) remained largely unknown. Investigating cellular functions and mechanism of action of BCNT proteins is challenging, because they have been implicated in human craniofacial development. Recently, we found that YETI, the D. melanogaster BCNT, is a chromatin factor that participates to H2A.V deposition. Here we report the effects of in vivo expression of CFDP1, the human BCNT protein, in Drosophila melanogaster. We show that CFDP1, similarly to YETI, binds to chromatin and its expression results in a wide range of abnormalities highly reminiscent of those observed in Yeti null mutants. This indicates that CFDP1 expressed in flies behaves in a dominant negative fashion disrupting the YETI function. Moreover, GST pull-down provides evidence indicating that 1) both YETI and CFDP1 undergo homodimerization and 2) YETI and CFDP1 physically interact each other by forming inactive heterodimers that would trigger the observed dominant-negative effect. Overall, our findings highlight unanticipated evidences suggesting that homodimerization mediated by the BCNT domain is integral to the chromatin functions of BCNT proteins. PMID:27151176

  20. Evolutionarily conserved regulation of hypocretin neuron specification by Lhx9

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Justin; Merkle, Florian T.; Gandhi, Avni V.; Gagnon, James A.; Woods, Ian G.; Chiu, Cindy N.; Shimogori, Tomomi; Schier, Alexander F.; Prober, David A.

    2015-01-01

    Loss of neurons that express the neuropeptide hypocretin (Hcrt) has been implicated in narcolepsy, a debilitating disorder characterized by excessive daytime sleepiness and cataplexy. Cell replacement therapy, using Hcrt-expressing neurons generated in vitro, is a potentially useful therapeutic approach, but factors sufficient to specify Hcrt neurons are unknown. Using zebrafish as a high-throughput system to screen for factors that can specify Hcrt neurons in vivo, we identified the LIM homeobox transcription factor Lhx9 as necessary and sufficient to specify Hcrt neurons. We found that Lhx9 can directly induce hcrt expression and we identified two potential Lhx9 binding sites in the zebrafish hcrt promoter. Akin to its function in zebrafish, we found that Lhx9 is sufficient to specify Hcrt-expressing neurons in the developing mouse hypothalamus. Our results elucidate an evolutionarily conserved role for Lhx9 in Hcrt neuron specification that improves our understanding of Hcrt neuron development. PMID:25725064

  1. Localization of an evolutionarily conserved protein proton pyrophosphatase in evolutionarily distant plants oryza sativa and physcomitrella patens

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Proton Pyrophosphatase (H+-PPase) is a highly evolutionarily conserved protein that is prevalent in the plant kingdom. One of the salient features of H+-PPase expression pattern, at least in vascular plants like Arabidopsis, is its conspicuous localization in both actively dividing cells and the phl...

  2. Functional equivalence of an evolutionarily conserved RNA binding module.

    PubMed

    Wells, Melissa L; Hicks, Stephanie N; Perera, Lalith; Blackshear, Perry J

    2015-10-01

    Members of the tristetraprolin (TTP) family of proteins participate in the regulation of mRNA turnover after initially binding to AU-rich elements in target mRNAs. Related proteins from most groups of eukaryotes contain a conserved tandem zinc finger (TZF) domain consisting of two closely spaced, similar CCCH zinc fingers that form the primary RNA binding domain. There is considerable sequence variation within the TZF domains from different family members within a single organism and from different organisms, raising questions about sequence-specific effects on RNA binding and decay promotion. We hypothesized that TZF domains from evolutionarily distant species are functionally interchangeable. The single family member expressed in the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe, Zfs1, promotes the turnover of several dozen transcripts, some of which are involved in cell-cell interactions. Using knockin techniques, we replaced the TZF domain of S. pombe Zfs1 with the equivalent domains from human TTP and the single family member proteins expressed in the silkworm Bombyx mori, the pathogenic yeast Candida guilliermondii, and the plant Chromolaena odorata. We found that the TZF domains from these widely disparate species could completely substitute for the native S. pombe TZF domain, as determined by measurement of target transcript levels and the flocculation phenotype characteristic of Zfs1 deletion. Recombinant TZF domain peptides from several of these species bound to an AU-rich RNA oligonucleotide with comparably high affinity. We conclude that the TZF domains from TTP family members in these evolutionarily widely divergent species are functionally interchangeable in mRNA binding and decay. PMID:26292216

  3. Evolutionarily Conserved Network Properties of Intrinsically Disordered Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Rangarajan, Nivedita; Kulkarni, Prakash; Hannenhalli, Sridhar

    2015-01-01

    Background Intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs) lack a stable tertiary structure in isolation. Remarkably, however, a substantial portion of IDPs undergo disorder-to-order transitions upon binding to their cognate partners. Structural flexibility and binding plasticity enable IDPs to interact with a broad range of partners. However, the broader network properties that could provide additional insights into the functional role of IDPs are not known. Results Here, we report the first comprehensive survey of network properties of IDP-induced sub-networks in multiple species from yeast to human. Our results show that IDPs exhibit greater-than-expected modularity and are connected to the rest of the protein interaction network (PIN) via proteins that exhibit the highest betweenness centrality and connect to fewer-than-expected IDP communities, suggesting that they form critical communication links from IDP modules to the rest of the PIN. Moreover, we found that IDPs are enriched at the top level of regulatory hierarchy. Conclusion Overall, our analyses reveal coherent and remarkably conserved IDP-centric network properties, namely, modularity in IDP-induced network and a layer of critical nodes connecting IDPs with the rest of the PIN. PMID:25974317

  4. Of flies, mice, and men: evolutionarily conserved tissue damage responses and aging.

    PubMed

    Neves, Joana; Demaria, Marco; Campisi, Judith; Jasper, Heinrich

    2015-01-12

    Studies in flies, mice, and human models have provided a conceptual framework for how paracrine interactions between damaged cells and the surrounding tissue control tissue repair. These studies have amassed evidence for an evolutionarily conserved secretory program that regulates tissue homeostasis. This program coordinates cell survival and proliferation during tissue regeneration and repair in young animals. By virtue of chronic engagement, however, it also contributes to the age-related decline of tissue homeostasis leading to degeneration, metabolic dysfunction, and cancer. Here, we review recent studies that shed light on the nature and regulation of this evolutionarily conserved secretory program. PMID:25584795

  5. Dual-targeted proteins tend to be more evolutionarily conserved.

    PubMed

    Kisslov, Irit; Naamati, Adi; Shakarchy, Nitzan; Pines, Ophry

    2014-10-01

    In eukaryotic cells, identical proteins can be located in more than a single subcellular compartment, a phenomenon termed dual targeting. We hypothesized that dual-targeted proteins should be more evolutionary conserved than exclusive mitochondrial proteins, due to separate selective pressures administered by the different compartments to maintain the functions associated with the protein sequences. We employed codon usage bias, propensity for gene loss, phylogenetic relationships, conservation analysis at the DNA level, and gene expression, to test our hypothesis. Our findings indicate that, indeed, dual-targeted proteins are significantly more conserved than their exclusively targeted counterparts. We then used this trait of gene conservation, together with previously identified traits of dual-targeted proteins (such as protein net charge and mitochondrial targeting sequence strength) to 1) create, for the first time (due to addition of conservation parameters), a tool for the prediction of dual-targeted mitochondrial proteins based on protein and mRNA sequences, and 2) show that molecular mechanisms involving one versus two translation products are not correlated with specific dual-targeting parameters. Finally, we discuss what evolutionary pressure maintains protein dual targeting in eukaryotes and deduce, as we initially hypothesized, that it is the discrete functions of these proteins in the different subcellular compartments, regardless of their dual-targeting mechanism. PMID:25063438

  6. Evolutionarily Conserved Linkage between Enzyme Fold, Flexibility, and Catalysis

    PubMed Central

    Ramanathan, Arvind; Agarwal, Pratul K.

    2011-01-01

    Proteins are intrinsically flexible molecules. The role of internal motions in a protein's designated function is widely debated. The role of protein structure in enzyme catalysis is well established, and conservation of structural features provides vital clues to their role in function. Recently, it has been proposed that the protein function may involve multiple conformations: the observed deviations are not random thermodynamic fluctuations; rather, flexibility may be closely linked to protein function, including enzyme catalysis. We hypothesize that the argument of conservation of important structural features can also be extended to identification of protein flexibility in interconnection with enzyme function. Three classes of enzymes (prolyl-peptidyl isomerase, oxidoreductase, and nuclease) that catalyze diverse chemical reactions have been examined using detailed computational modeling. For each class, the identification and characterization of the internal protein motions coupled to the chemical step in enzyme mechanisms in multiple species show identical enzyme conformational fluctuations. In addition to the active-site residues, motions of protein surface loop regions (>10 Å away) are observed to be identical across species, and networks of conserved interactions/residues connect these highly flexible surface regions to the active-site residues that make direct contact with substrates. More interestingly, examination of reaction-coupled motions in non-homologous enzyme systems (with no structural or sequence similarity) that catalyze the same biochemical reaction shows motions that induce remarkably similar changes in the enzyme–substrate interactions during catalysis. The results indicate that the reaction-coupled flexibility is a conserved aspect of the enzyme molecular architecture. Protein motions in distal areas of homologous and non-homologous enzyme systems mediate similar changes in the active-site enzyme–substrate interactions, thereby

  7. Evolutionarily conserved linkage between enzyme fold, flexibility, and catalysis

    SciTech Connect

    Ramanathan, Arvind; Agarwal, Pratul K

    2011-01-01

    Proteins are intrinsically flexible molecules. The role of internal motions in a protein's designated function is widely debated. The role of protein structure in enzyme catalysis is well established, and conservation of structural features provides vital clues to their role in function. Recently, it has been proposed that the protein function may involve multiple conformations: the observed deviations are not random thermodynamic fluctuations; rather, flexibility may be closely linked to protein function, including enzyme catalysis. We hypothesize that the argument of conservation of important structural features can also be extended to identification of protein flexibility in interconnection with enzyme function. Three classes of enzymes (prolyl-peptidyl isomerase, oxidoreductase, and nuclease) that catalyze diverse chemical reactions have been examined using detailed computational modeling. For each class, the identification and characterization of the internal protein motions coupled to the chemical step in enzyme mechanisms in multiple species show identical enzyme conformational fluctuations. In addition to the active-site residues, motions of protein surface loop regions (>10 away) are observed to be identical across species, and networks of conserved interactions/residues connect these highly flexible surface regions to the active-site residues that make direct contact with substrates. More interestingly, examination of reaction-coupled motions in non-homologous enzyme systems (with no structural or sequence similarity) that catalyze the same biochemical reaction shows motions that induce remarkably similar changes in the enzyme substrate interactions during catalysis. The results indicate that the reaction-coupled flexibility is a conserved aspect of the enzyme molecular architecture. Protein motions in distal areas of homologous and non-homologous enzyme systems mediate similar changes in the active-site enzyme substrate interactions, thereby impacting

  8. Evolutionarily conserved intracellular gate of voltage-dependent sodium channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oelstrom, Kevin; Goldschen-Ohm, Marcel P.; Holmgren, Miguel; Chanda, Baron

    2014-03-01

    Members of the voltage-gated ion channel superfamily (VGIC) regulate ion flux and generate electrical signals in excitable cells by opening and closing pore gates. The location of the gate in voltage-gated sodium channels, a founding member of this superfamily, remains unresolved. Here we explore the chemical modification rates of introduced cysteines along the S6 helix of domain IV in an inactivation-removed background. We find that state-dependent accessibility is demarcated by an S6 hydrophobic residue; substituted cysteines above this site are not modified by charged thiol reagents when the channel is closed. These accessibilities are consistent with those inferred from open- and closed-state structures of prokaryotic sodium channels. Our findings suggest that an intracellular gate composed of a ring of hydrophobic residues is not only responsible for regulating access to the pore of sodium channels, but is also a conserved feature within canonical members of the VGIC superfamily.

  9. Evolutionarily distinct bacteriophage endolysins featuring conserved peptidoglycan cleavage sites protect mice from MRSA infection

    PubMed Central

    Schmelcher, Mathias; Shen, Yang; Nelson, Daniel C.; Eugster, Marcel R.; Eichenseher, Fritz; Hanke, Daniela C.; Loessner, Martin J.; Dong, Shengli; Pritchard, David G.; Lee, Jean C.; Becker, Stephen C.; Foster-Frey, Juli; Donovan, David M.

    2015-01-01

    Objectives In the light of increasing drug resistance in Staphylococcus aureus, bacteriophage endolysins [peptidoglycan hydrolases (PGHs)] have been suggested as promising antimicrobial agents. The aim of this study was to determine the antimicrobial activity of nine enzymes representing unique homology groups within a diverse class of staphylococcal PGHs. Methods PGHs were recombinantly expressed, purified and tested for staphylolytic activity in multiple in vitro assays (zymogram, turbidity reduction assay and plate lysis) and against a comprehensive set of strains (S. aureus and CoNS). PGH cut sites in the staphylococcal peptidoglycan were determined by biochemical assays (Park–Johnson and Ghuysen procedures) and MS analysis. The enzymes were tested for their ability to eradicate static S. aureus biofilms and compared for their efficacy against systemic MRSA infection in a mouse model. Results Despite similar modular architectures and unexpectedly conserved cleavage sites in the peptidoglycan (conferred by evolutionarily divergent catalytic domains), the enzymes displayed varying degrees of in vitro lytic activity against numerous staphylococcal strains, including cell surface mutants and drug-resistant strains, and proved effective against static biofilms. In a mouse model of systemic MRSA infection, six PGHs provided 100% protection from death, with animals being free of clinical signs at the end of the experiment. Conclusions Our results corroborate the high potential of PGHs for treatment of S. aureus infections and reveal unique antimicrobial and biochemical properties of the different enzymes, suggesting a high diversity of potential applications despite highly conserved peptidoglycan target sites. PMID:25630640

  10. Blue reflectance in tarantulas is evolutionarily conserved despite nanostructural diversity

    PubMed Central

    Hsiung, Bor-Kai; Deheyn, Dimitri D.; Shawkey, Matthew D.; Blackledge, Todd A.

    2015-01-01

    Slight shifts in arrangement within biological photonic nanostructures can produce large color differences, and sexual selection often leads to high color diversity in clades with structural colors. We use phylogenetic reconstruction, electron microscopy, spectrophotometry, and optical modeling to show an opposing pattern of nanostructural diversification accompanied by unusual conservation of blue color in tarantulas (Araneae: Theraphosidae). In contrast to other clades, blue coloration in phylogenetically distant tarantulas peaks within a narrow 20-nm region around 450 nm. Both quasi-ordered and multilayer nanostructures found in different tarantulas produce this blue color. Thus, even within monophyletic lineages, tarantulas have evolved strikingly similar blue coloration through divergent mechanisms. The poor color perception and lack of conspicuous display during courtship of tarantulas argue that these colors are not sexually selected. Therefore, our data contrast with sexual selection that typically produces a diverse array of colors with a single structural mechanism by showing that natural selection on structural color in tarantulas resulted in convergence on similar color through diverse structural mechanisms. PMID:26702433

  11. Identification of Plasmodium falciparum DNA Repair Protein Mre11 with an Evolutionarily Conserved Nuclease Function

    PubMed Central

    Badugu, Sugith Babu; Nabi, Shaik Abdul; Vaidyam, Pratap; Laskar, Shyamasree; Bhattacharyya, Sunanda; Bhattacharyya, Mrinal Kanti

    2015-01-01

    The eukaryotic Meiotic Recombination protein 11 (Mre11) plays pivotal roles in the DNA damage response (DDR). Specifically, Mre11 senses and signals DNA double strand breaks (DSB) and facilitates their repair through effector proteins belonging to either homologous recombination (HR) or non-homologous end joining (NHEJ) repair mechanisms. In the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum, HR and alternative-NHEJ have been identified; however, little is known about the upstream factors involved in the DDR of this organism. In this report, we identify a putative ortholog of Mre11 in P. falciparum (PfalMre11) that shares 22% sequence similarity to human Mre11. Homology modeling reveals striking structural resemblance of the predicted PfalMre11 nuclease domain to the nuclease domain of Saccharomyces cerevisiae Mre11 (ScMre11). Complementation analyses reveal functional conservation of PfalMre11 nuclease activity as demonstrated by the ability of the PfalMre11 nuclease domain, in conjunction with the C-terminal domain of ScMre11, to functionally complement an mre11 deficient yeast strain. Functional complementation was virtually abrogated by an amino acid substitution in the PfalMre11 nuclease domain (D398N). PfalMre11 is abundant in the mitotically active trophozoite and schizont stages of P. falciparum and is up-regulated in response to DNA damage, suggesting a role in the DDR. PfalMre11 exhibits physical interaction with PfalRad50. In addition, yeast 2-hybrid studies show that PfalMre11 interacts with ScRad50 and ScXrs2, two important components of the well characterized Mre11-Rad50-Xrs2 complex which is involved in DDR signaling and repair in S. cerevisiae, further supporting a role for PfalMre11 in the DDR. Taken together, these findings provide evidence that PfalMre11 is an evolutionarily conserved component of the DDR in Plasmodium. PMID:25938776

  12. Identification and function of an evolutionarily conserved signaling intermediate in Toll pathways (ECSIT) from Crassostrea hongkongensis.

    PubMed

    Qu, Fufa; Xiang, Zhiming; Wang, Fuxuan; Zhang, Yang; Li, Jun; Zhang, Yuehuan; Xiao, Shu; Yu, Ziniu

    2015-11-01

    Evolutionarily conserved signaling intermediate in Toll pathways (ECSIT) is a multifunctional adaptor protein that plays a key role in the regulation of the oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) system, bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) pathway and Toll-like receptor (TLR) signaling pathway in mammals. However, the function of ECSIT homologs in mollusks, the second most diverse group of animals, is not well understood. In this study, we identified an ECSIT homolog in the Hong Kong oyster Crassostrea hongkongensis (ChECSIT) and investigated its biological functions. The full-length cDNA of ChECSIT is 1734 bp and includes an open reading frame (ORF) of 1074 bp that encodes a polypeptide of 451 amino acids. The predicted ChECSIT protein shares similar structural characteristics with other known ECSIT family proteins. Quantitative real-time PCR analysis revealed that ChECSIT mRNA is broadly expressed in all of the examined tissues and at different stages of embryonic development; its transcript level could be significantly up-regulated by challenge with microorganisms (Vibrio alginolyticus, Staphylococcus haemolyticus and Saccharomyces cerevisiae). In addition, ChECSIT was found to be located primarily in the cytoplasm, and its overexpression stimulated the transcriptional activity of an NF-κB reporter gene in HEK293T cells. These findings suggest that ChECSIT might be involved in embryogenesis processes and immune responses in C. hongkongensis. PMID:26204814

  13. Evolutionarily conserved mechanisms for the selection and maintenance of behavioural activity

    PubMed Central

    Fiore, Vincenzo G.; Dolan, Raymond J.; Strausfeld, Nicholas J.; Hirth, Frank

    2015-01-01

    Survival and reproduction entail the selection of adaptive behavioural repertoires. This selection manifests as phylogenetically acquired activities that depend on evolved nervous system circuitries. Lorenz and Tinbergen already postulated that heritable behaviours and their reliable performance are specified by genetically determined programs. Here we compare the functional anatomy of the insect central complex and vertebrate basal ganglia to illustrate their role in mediating selection and maintenance of adaptive behaviours. Comparative analyses reveal that central complex and basal ganglia circuitries share comparable lineage relationships within clusters of functionally integrated neurons. These clusters are specified by genetic mechanisms that link birth time and order to their neuronal identities and functions. Their subsequent connections and associated functions are characterized by similar mechanisms that implement dimensionality reduction and transition through attractor states, whereby spatially organized parallel-projecting loops integrate and convey sensorimotor representations that select and maintain behavioural activity. In both taxa, these neural systems are modulated by dopamine signalling that also mediates memory-like processes. The multiplicity of similarities between central complex and basal ganglia suggests evolutionarily conserved computational mechanisms for action selection. We speculate that these may have originated from ancestral ground pattern circuitries present in the brain of the last common ancestor of insects and vertebrates. PMID:26554043

  14. Evolutionarily conserved mechanisms for the selection and maintenance of behavioural activity.

    PubMed

    Fiore, Vincenzo G; Dolan, Raymond J; Strausfeld, Nicholas J; Hirth, Frank

    2015-12-19

    Survival and reproduction entail the selection of adaptive behavioural repertoires. This selection manifests as phylogenetically acquired activities that depend on evolved nervous system circuitries. Lorenz and Tinbergen already postulated that heritable behaviours and their reliable performance are specified by genetically determined programs. Here we compare the functional anatomy of the insect central complex and vertebrate basal ganglia to illustrate their role in mediating selection and maintenance of adaptive behaviours. Comparative analyses reveal that central complex and basal ganglia circuitries share comparable lineage relationships within clusters of functionally integrated neurons. These clusters are specified by genetic mechanisms that link birth time and order to their neuronal identities and functions. Their subsequent connections and associated functions are characterized by similar mechanisms that implement dimensionality reduction and transition through attractor states, whereby spatially organized parallel-projecting loops integrate and convey sensorimotor representations that select and maintain behavioural activity. In both taxa, these neural systems are modulated by dopamine signalling that also mediates memory-like processes. The multiplicity of similarities between central complex and basal ganglia suggests evolutionarily conserved computational mechanisms for action selection. We speculate that these may have originated from ancestral ground pattern circuitries present in the brain of the last common ancestor of insects and vertebrates. PMID:26554043

  15. An evolutionarily conserved gene, FUWA, plays a role in determining panicle architecture, grain shape and grain weight in rice.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jun; Gao, He; Zheng, Xiao-Ming; Jin, Mingna; Weng, Jian-Feng; Ma, Jin; Ren, Yulong; Zhou, Kunneng; Wang, Qi; Wang, Jie; Wang, Jiu-Lin; Zhang, Xin; Cheng, Zhijun; Wu, Chuanyin; Wang, Haiyang; Wan, Jian-Min

    2015-08-01

    Plant breeding relies on creation of novel allelic combinations for desired traits. Identification and utilization of beneficial alleles, rare alleles and evolutionarily conserved genes in the germplasm (referred to as 'hidden' genes) provide an effective approach to achieve this goal. Here we show that a chemically induced null mutation in an evolutionarily conserved gene, FUWA, alters multiple important agronomic traits in rice, including panicle architecture, grain shape and grain weight. FUWA encodes an NHL domain-containing protein, with preferential expression in the root meristem, shoot apical meristem and inflorescences, where it restricts excessive cell division. Sequence analysis revealed that FUWA has undergone a bottleneck effect, and become fixed in landraces and modern cultivars during domestication and breeding. We further confirm a highly conserved role of FUWA homologs in determining panicle architecture and grain development in rice, maize and sorghum through genetic transformation. Strikingly, knockdown of the FUWA transcription level by RNA interference results in an erect panicle and increased grain size in both indica and japonica genetic backgrounds. This study illustrates an approach to create new germplasm with improved agronomic traits for crop breeding by tapping into evolutionary conserved genes. PMID:26043067

  16. Of flies, mice and men: Evolutionarily conserved tissue damage responses and aging

    PubMed Central

    Neves, Joana; Demaria, Marco; Campisi, Judith; Jasper, Heinrich

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY Studies in flies, mice, and human models have provided a conceptual framework for how paracrine interactions between damaged cells and the surrounding tissue control tissue repair. These studies have amassed evidence for an evolutionarily conserved secretory program that regulates tissue homeostasis. This program coordinates cell survival and proliferation during tissue regeneration and repair in young animals. By virtue of chronic engagement, however, it also contributes to the age-related decline of tissue homeostasis leading to degeneration, metabolic dysfunction and cancer. Here we review recent studies that shed light on the nature and regulation of this evolutionary conserved secretory program. PMID:25584795

  17. Evolutionarily conserved autoregulation of alternative pre-mRNA splicing by ribosomal protein L10a

    PubMed Central

    Takei, Satomi; Togo-Ohno, Marina; Suzuki, Yutaka; Kuroyanagi, Hidehito

    2016-01-01

    Alternative splicing of pre-mRNAs can regulate expression of protein-coding genes by generating unproductive mRNAs rapidly degraded by nonsense-mediated mRNA decay (NMD). Many of the genes directly regulated by alternative splicing coupled with NMD (AS-NMD) are related to RNA metabolism, but the repertoire of genes regulated by AS-NMD in vivo is to be determined. Here, we analyzed transcriptome data of wild-type and NMD-defective mutant strains of the nematode worm Caenorhabditis elegans and demonstrate that eight of the 82 cytoplasmic ribosomal protein (rp) genes generate unproductively spliced mRNAs. Knockdown of any of the eight rp genes exerted a dynamic and compensatory effect on alternative splicing of its own transcript and inverse effects on that of the other rp genes. A large subunit protein L10a, termed RPL-1 in nematodes, directly and specifically binds to an evolutionarily conserved 39-nt stretch termed L10ARE between the two alternative 5′ splice sites in its own pre-mRNA to switch the splice site choice. Furthermore, L10ARE-mediated splicing autoregulation of the L10a-coding gene is conserved in vertebrates. These results indicate that L10a is an evolutionarily conserved splicing regulator and that homeostasis of a subset of the rp genes are regulated at the level of pre-mRNA splicing in vivo. PMID:26961311

  18. Rbfox proteins regulate alternative mRNA splicing through evolutionarily conserved RNA bridges

    PubMed Central

    Lovci, Michael T; Ghanem, Dana; Marr, Henry; Arnold, Justin; Gee, Sherry; Parra, Marilyn; Liang, Tiffany Y; Stark, Thomas J; Gehman, Lauren T; Hoon, Shawn; Massirer, Katlin B; Pratt, Gabriel A; Black, Douglas L; Gray, Joe W; Conboy, John G; Yeo, Gene W

    2014-01-01

    Alternative splicing (AS) enables programmed diversity of gene expression across tissues and development. We show here that binding in distal intronic regions (>500 nucleotides (nt) from any exon) by Rbfox splicing factors important in development is extensive and is an active mode of splicing regulation. Similarly to exon-proximal sites, distal sites contain evolutionarily conserved GCATG sequences and are associated with AS activation and repression upon modulation of Rbfox abundance in human and mouse experimental systems. As a proof of principle, we validated the activity of two specific Rbfox enhancers in KIF21A and ENAH distal introns and showed that a conserved long-range RNA-RNA base-pairing interaction (an RNA bridge) is necessary for Rbfox-mediated exon inclusion in the ENAH gene. Thus we demonstrate a previously unknown RNA-mediated mechanism for AS control by distally bound RNA-binding proteins. PMID:24213538

  19. Rbfox proteins regulate alternative mRNA splicing through evolutionarily conserved RNA bridges.

    PubMed

    Lovci, Michael T; Ghanem, Dana; Marr, Henry; Arnold, Justin; Gee, Sherry; Parra, Marilyn; Liang, Tiffany Y; Stark, Thomas J; Gehman, Lauren T; Hoon, Shawn; Massirer, Katlin B; Pratt, Gabriel A; Black, Douglas L; Gray, Joe W; Conboy, John G; Yeo, Gene W

    2013-12-01

    Alternative splicing (AS) enables programmed diversity of gene expression across tissues and development. We show here that binding in distal intronic regions (>500 nucleotides (nt) from any exon) by Rbfox splicing factors important in development is extensive and is an active mode of splicing regulation. Similarly to exon-proximal sites, distal sites contain evolutionarily conserved GCATG sequences and are associated with AS activation and repression upon modulation of Rbfox abundance in human and mouse experimental systems. As a proof of principle, we validated the activity of two specific Rbfox enhancers in KIF21A and ENAH distal introns and showed that a conserved long-range RNA-RNA base-pairing interaction (an RNA bridge) is necessary for Rbfox-mediated exon inclusion in the ENAH gene. Thus we demonstrate a previously unknown RNA-mediated mechanism for AS control by distally bound RNA-binding proteins. PMID:24213538

  20. EAG2 potassium channel with evolutionarily conserved function as a brain tumor target.

    PubMed

    Huang, Xi; He, Ye; Dubuc, Adrian M; Hashizume, Rintaro; Zhang, Wei; Reimand, Jüri; Yang, Huanghe; Wang, Tongfei A; Stehbens, Samantha J; Younger, Susan; Barshow, Suzanne; Zhu, Sijun; Cooper, Michael K; Peacock, John; Ramaswamy, Vijay; Garzia, Livia; Wu, Xiaochong; Remke, Marc; Forester, Craig M; Kim, Charles C; Weiss, William A; James, C David; Shuman, Marc A; Bader, Gary D; Mueller, Sabine; Taylor, Michael D; Jan, Yuh Nung; Jan, Lily Yeh

    2015-09-01

    Over 20% of the drugs for treating human diseases target ion channels, but no cancer drug approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is intended to target an ion channel. We found that the EAG2 (Ether-a-go-go 2) potassium channel has an evolutionarily conserved function for promoting brain tumor growth and metastasis, delineate downstream pathways, and uncover a mechanism for different potassium channels to functionally cooperate and regulate mitotic cell volume and tumor progression. EAG2 potassium channel was enriched at the trailing edge of migrating medulloblastoma (MB) cells to regulate local cell volume dynamics, thereby facilitating cell motility. We identified the FDA-approved antipsychotic drug thioridazine as an EAG2 channel blocker that reduces xenografted MB growth and metastasis, and present a case report of repurposing thioridazine for treating a human patient. Our findings illustrate the potential of targeting ion channels in cancer treatment. PMID:26258683

  1. Evolutionarily Conserved Coupling of Adaptive and Excitable Networks Mediates Eukaryotic Chemotaxis

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Mingjie; Shi, Changji; Iglesias, Pablo A.; Devreotes, Peter N.

    2014-01-01

    Numerous models explain how cells sense and migrate toward shallow chemoattractant gradients. Studies show that an excitable signal transduction network acts as a pacemaker that controls the cytoskeleton to drive motility. Here we show that this network is required to link stimuli to actin polymerization and chemotactic motility and we distinguish the various models of chemotaxis. First, signaling activity is suppressed toward the low side in a gradient or following removal of uniform chemoattractant. Second, signaling activities display a rapid shut off and a slower adaptation during which responsiveness to subsequent test stimuli decline. Simulations of various models indicate that these properties require coupled adaptive and excitable networks. Adaptation involves a G-protein independent inhibitor since stimulation of cells lacking G-protein function suppresses basal activities. The salient features of the coupled networks were observed for different chemoattractants in Dictyostelium and in human neutrophils, suggesting an evolutionarily conserved mechanism for eukaryotic chemotaxis. PMID:25346418

  2. EAG2 potassium channel with evolutionarily conserved function as a brain tumor target

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Xi; He, Ye; Dubuc, Adrian M.; Hashizume, Rintaro; Zhang, Wei; Reimand, Jüri; Yang, Huanghe; Wang, Tongfei A.; Stehbens, Samantha J.; Younger, Susan; Barshow, Suzanne; Zhu, Sijun; Cooper, Michael K.; Peacock, John; Ramaswamy, Vijay; Garzia, Livia; Wu, Xiaochong; Remke, Marc; Forester, Craig M.; Kim, Charles C.; Weiss, William A.; James, C. David; Shuman, Marc A.; Bader, Gary D.; Mueller, Sabine; Taylor, Michael D.; Jan, Yuh Nung; Jan, Lily Yeh

    2015-01-01

    Over 20% of the drugs for treating human diseases target ion channels, however, no cancer drug approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is intended to target an ion channel. Here, we demonstrate the evolutionarily conserved function of EAG2 potassium channel in promoting brain tumor growth and metastasis, delineate downstream pathways and uncover a mechanism for different potassium channels to functionally corporate and regulate mitotic cell volume and tumor progression. We show that EAG2 potassium channel is enriched at the trailing edge of migrating MB cells to regulate local cell volume dynamics, thereby facilitating cell motility. We identify the FDA-approved antipsychotic drug thioridazine as an EAG2 channel blocker that reduces xenografted MB growth and metastasis, and present a case report of repurposing thioridazine for treating a human patient. Our findings thus illustrate the potential of targeting ion channels in cancer treatment. PMID:26258683

  3. Functional phosphorylation sites in cardiac myofilament proteins are evolutionarily conserved in skeletal myofilament proteins.

    PubMed

    Gross, Sean M; Lehman, Steven L

    2016-06-01

    Protein phosphorylation plays an important role in regulating cardiac contractile function, but phosphorylation is not thought to play a regulatory role in skeletal muscle. To examine how myofilament phosphorylation arose in the human heart, we analyzed the amino acid sequences of 25 cardiac phosphorylation sites in animals ranging from fruit flies to humans. These analyses indicated that of the 25 human phosphorylation sites examined, 11 have been conserved across vertebrates and four have been sporadically present in vertebrates. Furthermore, all 11 of the cardiac sites found across vertebrates were present in skeletal muscle isoforms, along with three sites that were sporadically present. Based on the conservation of amino acid sequences between cardiac and skeletal contractile proteins, we tested for phosphorylation in mammalian skeletal muscle using several biochemical techniques and found evidence that multiple myofilament proteins were phosphorylated. Several of these phosphorylation sites were validated using mass spectrometry, including one site that is present in slow- and fast-twitch troponin I (TnI), but was lost in cardiac TnI. Thus, several myofilament phosphorylation sites present in the human heart likely arose in invertebrate muscle, have been evolutionarily conserved in skeletal muscle, and potentially have functional effects in both skeletal and cardiac muscle. PMID:26993364

  4. QGRS-Conserve: a computational method for discovering evolutionarily conserved G-quadruplex motifs

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Nucleic acids containing guanine tracts can form quadruplex structures via non-Watson-Crick base pairing. Formation of G-quadruplexes is associated with the regulation of important biological functions such as transcription, genetic instability, DNA repair, DNA replication, epigenetic mechanisms, regulation of translation, and alternative splicing. G-quadruplexes play important roles in human diseases and are being considered as targets for a variety of therapies. Identification of functional G-quadruplexes and the study of their overall distribution in genomes and transcriptomes is an important pursuit. Traditional computational methods map sequence motifs capable of forming G-quadruplexes but have difficulty in distinguishing motifs that occur by chance from ones which fold into G-quadruplexes. Results We present Quadruplex forming ‘G’-rich sequences (QGRS)-Conserve, a computational method for calculating motif conservation across exomes and supports filtering to provide researchers with more precise methods of studying G-quadruplex distribution patterns. Our method quantitatively evaluates conservation between quadruplexes found in homologous nucleotide sequences based on several motif structural characteristics. QGRS-Conserve also efficiently manages overlapping G-quadruplex sequences such that the resulting datasets can be analyzed effectively. Conclusions We have applied QGRS-Conserve to identify a large number of G-quadruplex motifs in the human exome conserved across several mammalian and non-mammalian species. We have successfully identified multiple homologs of many previously published G-quadruplexes that play post-transcriptional regulatory roles in human genes. Preliminary large-scale analysis identified many homologous G-quadruplexes in the 5′- and 3′-untranslated regions of mammalian species. An expectedly smaller set of G-quadruplex motifs was found to be conserved across larger phylogenetic distances. QGRS-Conserve provides means

  5. MetaMirClust: Discovery and Exploration of Evolutionarily Conserved miRNA Clusters.

    PubMed

    Chan, Wen-Ching; Lin, Wen-Chang

    2016-01-01

    Recent emerging studies suggest that a substantial fraction of microRNA (miRNA) genes is likely to form clusters in terms of evolutionary conservation and biological implications, posing a significant challenge for the research community and shifting the bottleneck of scientific discovery from miRNA singletons to miRNA clusters. In addition, the advance in molecular sequencing technique such as next-generation sequencing (NGS) has facilitated researchers to comprehensively characterize miRNAs with low abundance on genome-wide scale in multiple species. Taken together, a large scale, cross-species survey of grouped miRNAs based on genomic location would be valuable for investigating their biological functions and regulations in an evolutionary perspective. In the present chapter, we describe the application of effective and efficient bioinformatics tools on the identification of clustered miRNAs and illustrate how to use the recently developed Web-based database, MetaMirClust ( http://fgfr.ibms.sinic.aedu.tw/MetaMirClust ) to discover evolutionarily conserved pattern of miRNA clusters across metazoans. PMID:25861770

  6. FGF signaling inhibitor, SPRY4, is evolutionarily conserved target of WNT signaling pathway in progenitor cells.

    PubMed

    Katoh, Yuriko; Katoh, Masaru

    2006-03-01

    WNT, FGF and Hedgehog signaling pathways network together during embryogenesis, tissue regeneration, and carcinogenesis. FGF16, FGF18, and FGF20 genes are targets of WNT-mediated TCF/LEF-beta-catenin-BCL9/BCL9L-PYGO transcriptional complex. SPROUTY (SPRY) and SPRED family genes encode inhibitors for receptor tyrosine kinase signaling cascades, such as those of FGF receptor family members and EGF receptor family members. Here, transcriptional regulation of SPRY1, SPRY2, SPRY3, SPRY4, SPRED1, SPRED2, and SPRED3 genes by WNT/beta-catenin signaling cascade was investigated by using bioinformatics and human intelligence (humint). Because double TCF/LEF-binding sites were identified within the 5'-promoter region of human SPRY4 gene, comparative genomics analyses on SPRY4 orthologs were further performed. SPRY4-FGF1 locus at human chromosome 5q31.3 and FGF2-NUDT6-SPATA5-SPRY1 locus at human chromosome 4q27-q28.1 were paralogous regions within the human genome. Chimpanzee SPRY4 gene was identified within NW_107083.1 genome sequence. Human, chimpanzee, rat and mouse SPRY4 orthologs, consisting of three exons, were well conserved. SPRY4 gene was identified as the evolutionarily conserved target of WNT/beta-catenin signaling pathway based on the conservation of double TCF/LEF-binding sites within 5'-promoter region of mammalian SPRY4 orthologs. Human SPRY4 mRNA was expressed in embryonic stem (ES) cells, brain, pancreatic islet, colon cancer, head and neck tumor, melanoma, and pancreatic cancer. WNT signaling activation in progenitor cells leads to the growth regulation of progenitor cells themselves through SPRY4 induction, and also to the growth stimulation of proliferating cells through FGF secretion. Epigenetic silencing and loss-of-function mutations of SPRY4 gene in progenitor cells could lead to carcinogenesis. SPRY4 is the pharmacogenomics target in the fields of oncology and regenerative medicine. PMID:16465403

  7. Extensive lysine acetylation occurs in evolutionarily conserved metabolic pathways and parasite-specific functions during Plasmodium falciparum intraerythrocytic development

    PubMed Central

    Miao, Jun; Lawrence, Matthew; Jeffers, Victoria; Zhao, Fangqing; Parker, Daniel; Ge, Ying; Sullivan, William J.; Cui, Liwang

    2013-01-01

    Summary Lysine acetylation has emerged as a major posttranslational modification involved in diverse cellular functions. Using a combination of immunoisolation and liquid chromatography coupled to accurate mass spectrometry, we determined the first acetylome of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum during its active proliferation in erythrocytes with 421 acetylation sites identified in 230 proteins. Lysine-acetylated proteins are distributed in the nucleus, cytoplasm, mitochondrion, and apicoplast. Whereas occurrence of lysine acetylation in a similarly wide range of cellular functions suggests conservation of lysine acetylation through evolution, the Plasmodium acetylome also revealed significant divergence from those of other eukaryotes and even the closely-related parasite Toxoplasma. This divergence is reflected in the acetylation of a large number of Plasmodium-specific proteins and different acetylation sites in evolutionarily conserved acetylated proteins. A prominent example is the abundant acetylation of proteins in the glycolysis pathway but relatively deficient acetylation of enzymes in the citrate cycle. Using specific transgenic lines and inhibitors, we determined that the acetyltransferase PfMYST and lysine deacetylases play important roles in regulating the dynamics of cytoplasmic protein acetylation. The Plasmodium acetylome provides an exciting start point for further exploration of functions of acetylation in the biology of malaria parasites. PMID:23796209

  8. The Evolutionarily Conserved E3 Ubiquitin Ligase AtCHIP Contributes to Plant Immunity.

    PubMed

    Copeland, Charles; Ao, Kevin; Huang, Yan; Tong, Meixuizi; Li, Xin

    2016-01-01

    Plants possess a sophisticated immune system to recognize and respond to microbial threats in their environment. The level of immune signaling must be tightly regulated so that immune responses can be quickly activated in the presence of pathogens, while avoiding autoimmunity. HSP90s, along with their diverse array of co-chaperones, forms chaperone complexes that have been shown to play both positive and negative roles in regulating the accumulation of immune receptors and regulators. In this study, we examined the role of AtCHIP, an evolutionarily conserved E3 ligase that was known to interact with chaperones including HSP90s in multicellular organisms including fruit fly, Caenorhabditis elegans, plants and human. Atchip knockout mutants display enhanced disease susceptibility to a virulent oomycete pathogen, and overexpression of AtCHIP causes enhanced disease resistance at low temperature. Although CHIP was reported to target HSP90 for ubiquitination and degradation, accumulation of HSP90.3 was not affected in Atchip plants. In addition, protein accumulation of nucleotide-binding, leucine-rich repeat domain immune receptor (NLR) SNC1 is not altered in Atchip mutant. Thus, while AtCHIP plays a role in immunity, it does not seem to regulate the turnover of HSP90 or SNC1. Further investigation is needed in order to determine the exact mechanism behind AtCHIP's role in regulating plant immune responses. PMID:27014328

  9. A molecular genetic dissection of the evolutionarily conserved N terminus of yeast Rad52.

    PubMed Central

    Mortensen, Uffe H; Erdeniz, Naz; Feng, Qi; Rothstein, Rodney

    2002-01-01

    Rad52 is a DNA-binding protein that stimulates the annealing of complementary single-stranded DNA. Only the N terminus of Rad52 is evolutionarily conserved; it contains the core activity of the protein, including its DNA-binding activity. To identify amino acid residues that are important for Rad52 function(s), we systematically replaced 76 of 165 amino acid residues in the N terminus with alanine. These substitutions were examined for their effects on the repair of gamma-ray-induced DNA damage and on both interchromosomal and direct repeat heteroallelic recombination. This analysis identified five regions that are required for efficient gamma-ray damage repair or mitotic recombination. Two regions, I and II, also contain the classic mutations, rad52-2 and rad52-1, respectively. Interestingly, four of the five regions contain mutations that impair the ability to repair gamma-ray-induced DNA damage yet still allow mitotic recombinants to be produced at rates that are similar to or higher than those obtained with wild-type strains. In addition, a new class of separation-of-function mutation that is only partially deficient in the repair of gamma-ray damage, but exhibits decreased mitotic recombination similar to rad52 null strains, was identified. These results suggest that Rad52 protein acts differently on lesions that occur spontaneously during the cell cycle than on those induced by gamma-irradiation. PMID:12072453

  10. An archaeal protein evolutionarily conserved in prokaryotes is a zinc-dependent metalloprotease

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Yongmei; Peng, Nan; Han, Wenyuan; Mei, Yuxia; Chen, Zhengjun; Feng, Xu; Liang, Yun Xiang; She, Qunxin

    2012-01-01

    A putative protease gene (tldD) was previously identified from studying tolerance of letD encoding the CcdB toxin of a toxin–antidote system of the F plasmid in Escherichia coli. While this gene is evolutionarily conserved in archaea and bacteria, the proteolytic activity of encoded proteins remained to be demonstrated experimentally. Here we studied Sso0660, an archaeal TldD homologue encoded in Sulfolobus solfataricus by overexpression of the recombinant protein and characterization of the purified enzyme. We found that the enzyme is active in degrading azocasein and FITC–BSA substrates. Protease inhibitor studies showed that EDTA and o-phenanthroline, two well-known metalloprotease inhibitors, either abolished completely or strongly inhibited the enzyme activity, and flame spectrometric analysis showed that a zinc ion is a cofactor of the protease. Furthermore, the protein forms disulfide bond via the Cys416 residue, yielding protein dimer that is the active form of the enzyme. These results establish for the first time that tidD genes encode zinc-containing proteases, classifying them as a family in the metalloprotease class. PMID:22950735

  11. The Evolutionarily Conserved E3 Ubiquitin Ligase AtCHIP Contributes to Plant Immunity

    PubMed Central

    Copeland, Charles; Ao, Kevin; Huang, Yan; Tong, Meixuizi; Li, Xin

    2016-01-01

    Plants possess a sophisticated immune system to recognize and respond to microbial threats in their environment. The level of immune signaling must be tightly regulated so that immune responses can be quickly activated in the presence of pathogens, while avoiding autoimmunity. HSP90s, along with their diverse array of co-chaperones, forms chaperone complexes that have been shown to play both positive and negative roles in regulating the accumulation of immune receptors and regulators. In this study, we examined the role of AtCHIP, an evolutionarily conserved E3 ligase that was known to interact with chaperones including HSP90s in multicellular organisms including fruit fly, Caenorhabditis elegans, plants and human. Atchip knockout mutants display enhanced disease susceptibility to a virulent oomycete pathogen, and overexpression of AtCHIP causes enhanced disease resistance at low temperature. Although CHIP was reported to target HSP90 for ubiquitination and degradation, accumulation of HSP90.3 was not affected in Atchip plants. In addition, protein accumulation of nucleotide-binding, leucine-rich repeat domain immune receptor (NLR) SNC1 is not altered in Atchip mutant. Thus, while AtCHIP plays a role in immunity, it does not seem to regulate the turnover of HSP90 or SNC1. Further investigation is needed in order to determine the exact mechanism behind AtCHIP’s role in regulating plant immune responses. PMID:27014328

  12. Trichohyalin-like proteins have evolutionarily conserved roles in the morphogenesis of skin appendages.

    PubMed

    Mlitz, Veronika; Strasser, Bettina; Jaeger, Karin; Hermann, Marcela; Ghannadan, Minoo; Buchberger, Maria; Alibardi, Lorenzo; Tschachler, Erwin; Eckhart, Leopold

    2014-11-01

    S100 fused-type proteins (SFTPs) such as filaggrin, trichohyalin, and cornulin are differentially expressed in cornifying keratinocytes of the epidermis and various skin appendages. To determine evolutionarily conserved, and thus presumably important, features of SFTPs, we characterized nonmammalian SFTPs and compared their amino acid sequences and expression patterns with those of mammalian SFTPs. We identified an ortholog of cornulin and a previously unknown SFTP, termed scaffoldin, in reptiles and birds, whereas filaggrin was confined to mammals. In contrast to mammalian SFTPs, both cornulin and scaffoldin of the chicken are expressed in the embryonic periderm. However, scaffoldin resembles mammalian trichohyalin with regard to its expression in the filiform papillae of the tongue and in the epithelium underneath the forming tips of the claws. Furthermore, scaffoldin is expressed in the epithelial sheath around growing feathers, reminiscent of trichohyalin expression in the inner root sheath of hair. The results of this study show that SFTP-positive epithelia function as scaffolds for the growth of diverse skin appendages such as claws, nails, hair, and feathers, indicating a common evolutionary origin. PMID:24780931

  13. An evolutionarily conserved protein CHORD regulates scaling of dendritic arbors with body size

    PubMed Central

    Shimono, Kohei; Fujishima, Kazuto; Nomura, Takafumi; Ohashi, Masayoshi; Usui, Tadao; Kengaku, Mineko; Toyoda, Atsushi; Uemura, Tadashi

    2014-01-01

    Most organs scale proportionally with body size through regulation of individual cell size and/or cell number. Here we addressed how postmitotic and morphologically complex cells such as neurons scale with the body size by using the dendritic arbor of one Drosophila sensory neuron as an assay system. In small adults eclosed under a limited-nutrition condition, the wild-type neuron preserved the branching complexity of the arbor, but scaled down the entire arbor, making a “miniature”. In contrast, mutant neurons for the Insulin/IGF signaling (IIS) or TORC1 pathway exhibited “undergrowth”, which was characterized by decreases in both the branching complexity and the arbor size, despite a normal diet. These contrasting phenotypes hinted that a novel regulatory mechanism contributes to the dendritic scaling in wild-type neurons. Indeed, we isolated a mutation in the gene CHORD/morgana that uncoupled the neuron size and the body size: CHORD mutant neurons generated miniature dendritic arbors regardless of the body size. CHORD encodes an evolutionarily conserved co-chaperone of HSP90. Our results support the notion that dendritic growth and branching are controlled by partly separate mechanisms. The IIS/TORC1 pathways control both growth and branching to avert underdevelopment, whereas CHORD together with TORC2 realizes proportional scaling of the entire arbor. PMID:24643112

  14. An evolutionarily conserved mode of modulation of Shaw-like K+ channels

    PubMed Central

    Cotella, Diego; Hernandez-Enriquez, Berenice; Duan, Zhibing; Wu, Xilong; Gazula, Valeswara-Rao; Brown, Maile R.; Kaczmarek, Leonard K.; Sesti, Federico

    2013-01-01

    Voltage-gated K+ channels of the Shaw family (also known as the KCNC or Kv3 family) play pivotal roles in mammalian brains, and genetic or pharmacological disruption of their activities in mice results in a spectrum of behavioral defects. We have used the model system of Caenorhabditis elegans to elucidate conserved molecular mechanisms that regulate these channels. We have now found that the C. elegans Shaw channel KHT-1, and its mammalian homologue, murine Kv3.1b, are both modulated by acid phosphatases. Thus, the C. elegans phosphatase ACP-2 is stably associated with KHT-1, while its mammalian homolog, prostatic acid phosphatase (PAP; also known as ACPP-201) stably associates with murine Kv3.1b K+ channels in vitro and in vivo. In biochemical experiments both phosphatases were able to reverse phosphorylation of their associated channel. The effect of phosphorylation on both channels is to produce a decrease in current amplitude and electrophysiological analyses demonstrated that dephosphorylation reversed the effects of phosphorylation on the magnitude of the macroscopic currents. ACP-2 and KHT-1 were colocalized in the nervous system of C. elegans and, in the mouse nervous system, PAP and Kv3.1b were colocalized in subsets of neurons, including in the brain stem and the ventricular zone. Taken together, this body of evidence suggests that acid phosphatases are general regulatory partners of Shaw-like K+ channels.—Cotella, D., Hernandez-Enriquez, B., Duan, Z., Wu, X., Gazula, V.-R., Brown, M. R., Kaczmarek, L. K., and Sesti, F. An evolutionarily conserved mode of modulation of Shaw-like K+ channels. PMID:23233530

  15. Unique amino acid signatures that are evolutionarily conserved distinguish simple-type, epidermal and hair keratins

    PubMed Central

    Strnad, Pavel; Usachov, Valentyn; Debes, Cedric; Gräter, Frauke; Parry, David A. D.; Omary, M. Bishr

    2011-01-01

    Keratins (Ks) consist of central α-helical rod domains that are flanked by non-α-helical head and tail domains. The cellular abundance of keratins, coupled with their selective cell expression patterns, suggests that they diversified to fulfill tissue-specific functions although the primary structure differences between them have not been comprehensively compared. We analyzed keratin sequences from many species: K1, K2, K5, K9, K10, K14 were studied as representatives of epidermal keratins, and compared with K7, K8, K18, K19, K20 and K31, K35, K81, K85, K86, which represent simple-type (single-layered or glandular) epithelial and hair keratins, respectively. We show that keratin domains have striking differences in their amino acids. There are many cysteines in hair keratins but only a small number in epidermal keratins and rare or none in simple-type keratins. The heads and/or tails of epidermal keratins are glycine and phenylalanine rich but alanine poor, whereas parallel domains of hair keratins are abundant in prolines, and those of simple-type epithelial keratins are enriched in acidic and/or basic residues. The observed differences between simple-type, epidermal and hair keratins are highly conserved throughout evolution. Cysteines and histidines, which are infrequent keratin amino acids, are involved in de novo mutations that are markedly overrepresented in keratins. Hence, keratins have evolutionarily conserved and domain-selectively enriched amino acids including glycine and phenylalanine (epidermal), cysteine and proline (hair), and basic and acidic (simple-type epithelial), which reflect unique functions related to structural flexibility, rigidity and solubility, respectively. Our findings also support the importance of human keratin ‘mutation hotspot’ residues and their wild-type counterparts. PMID:22215855

  16. Evolutionarily-conserved prefrontal-amygdalar dysfunction in early-life anxiety

    PubMed Central

    Birn, Rasmus M.; Shackman, Alexander J.; Oler, Jonathan A.; Williams, Lisa E.; McFarlin, Daniel R.; Rogers, Gregory M.; Shelton, Steven E.; Alexander, Andrew L.; Pine, Daniel S.; Slattery, Marcia J.; Davidson, Richard J.; Fox, Andrew S.; Kalin, Ned H.

    2014-01-01

    Some individuals are endowed with a biology that renders them more reactive to novelty and potential threat. When extreme, this anxious temperament (AT) confers elevated risk for the development of anxiety, depression, and substance abuse. These disorders are highly prevalent, debilitating, and can be challenging to treat. The high-risk AT phenotype is expressed similarly in children and young monkeys and mechanistic work demonstrates that the central nucleus (Ce) of the amygdala is an important substrate. While it is widely believed that the flow of information across the structural network connecting the Ce to other brain regions underlies primates' capacity for flexibly regulating anxiety, the functional architecture of this network has remained poorly understood. Here we used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in anesthetized young monkeys and quietly resting children with anxiety disorders to identify an evolutionarily-conserved pattern of functional connectivity relevant to early-life anxiety. Across primate species and levels of awareness, reduced functional connectivity between the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (dlPFC), a region thought to play a central role in the control of cognition and emotion, and the Ce was associated with increased anxiety assessed outside the scanner. Importantly, high-resolution 18-fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (FDG-PET) imaging provided evidence that elevated Ce metabolism statistically mediates the association between prefrontal-amygdalar connectivity and elevated anxiety. These results provide new clues about the brain network underlying extreme early-life anxiety and set the stage for mechanistic work aimed at developing improved interventions for pediatric anxiety. PMID:24863147

  17. Two evolutionarily conserved sequence elements for Peg3/Usp29 transcription

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Jeong Do; Yu, Sungryul; Choo, Jung Ha; Kim, Joomyeong

    2008-01-01

    Background Two evolutionarily Conserved Sequence Elements, CSE1 and CSE2 (YY1 binding sites), are found within the 3.8-kb CpG island surrounding the bidirectional promoter of two imprinted genes, Peg3 (Paternally expressed gene 3) and Usp29 (Ubiquitin-specific protease 29). This CpG island is a likely ICR (Imprinting Control Region) that controls transcription of the 500-kb genomic region of the Peg3 imprinted domain. Results The current study investigated the functional roles of CSE1 and CSE2 in the transcriptional control of the two genes, Peg3 and Usp29, using cell line-based promoter assays. The mutation of 6 YY1 binding sites (CSE2) reduced the transcriptional activity of the bidirectional promoter in the Peg3 direction in an orientation-dependent manner, suggesting an activator role for CSE2 (YY1 binding sites). However, the activity in the Usp29 direction was not detectable regardless of the presence/absence of YY1 binding sites. In contrast, mutation of CSE1 increased the transcriptional activity of the promoter in both the Peg3 and Usp29 directions, suggesting a potential repressor role for CSE1. The observed repression by CSE1 was also orientation-dependent. Serial mutational analyses further narrowed down two separate 6-bp-long regions within the 42-bp-long CSE1 which are individually responsible for the repression of Peg3 and Usp29. Conclusion CSE2 (YY1 binding sites) functions as an activator for Peg3 transcription, while CSE1 acts as a repressor for the transcription of both Peg3 and Usp29. PMID:19068137

  18. Unlocking the power of cross-species genomic analyses: identification of evolutionarily conserved breast cancer networks and validation of preclinical models.

    PubMed

    Bennett, Christina N; Green, Jeffrey E

    2008-01-01

    The application of high-throughput genomic technologies has revealed that individual breast tumors display a variety of molecular features that require more personalized approaches to treatment. Several recent studies have demonstrated that a cross-species analytic approach provides a powerful means to filter through genetic complexity by identifying evolutionarily conserved genetic networks that are fundamental to the oncogenic process. Mouse-human tumor comparisons will provide insights into cellular origins of tumor subtypes, define interactive oncogenetic networks, identify potential novel therapeutic targets, and further validate as well as guide the selection of genetically engineered mouse models for preclinical testing. PMID:18828875

  19. An Evolutionarily-Conserved Mechanism of Calcium-Dependent Neurotoxicity in a Zebrafish Model of FASD

    PubMed Central

    Flentke, George R.; Klingler, Rebekah H.; Tanguay, Robert L.; Carvan, Michael J.; Smith, Susan M.

    2014-01-01

    Background Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) are a leading cause of neurodevelopmental disability. Non-human animal models offer novel insights into its underlying mechanisms. Although the developing zebrafish has great promise for FASD research, a significant challenge to its wider adoption is the paucity of clear, mechanistic parallels between its ethanol responses and those of non-piscine, established models. Inconsistencies in the published pharmodynamics for ethanol-exposed zebrafish, alongside the use of comparatively high ethanol doses, challenge the interpretation of this model’s clinical relevance. Methods To address these limitations, we developed a binge, single-exposure model of ethanol exposure in the early zebrafish embryo. Results Brief (3hr) ethanol exposure is sufficient to cause significant neural crest losses and craniofacial alterations, with peak vulnerability during neurogenesis and early somitogenesis. These losses are apoptotic, documented using TUNEL assay and secA5-YFP-reporter fish. Apoptosis is dose-dependent with an EC50 = 56.2mM ± 14.3mM ethanolint, a clinically-relevant value within the range producing apoptosis in chick and mouse neural crest. This apoptosis requires the calcium-dependent activation of CaMKII and recapitulates the well-described ethanol signaling mechanism in avian neural crest. Importantly, we resolve the existing confusion regarding zebrafish ethanol kinetics. We show that steady-state ethanol concentrations within both chorion-intact and dechorionated embryos are maintained at 35.7% ± 2.8% of ethanolext levels across the range from 50 to 300 mM ethanolext, a value consistent with several published reports. Equilibrium is rapid and complete within 5min of ethanol addition. Conclusions The calcium/CaMKII mechanism of ethanol's neurotoxicity is shared between an amniote (chick) and teleost fish, indicating this mechanism is evolutionarily conserved. Our data suggest that ethanolext concentrations greater

  20. The evolutionarily conserved transcription factor PRDM12 controls sensory neuron development and pain perception.

    PubMed

    Nagy, Vanja; Cole, Tiffany; Van Campenhout, Claude; Khoung, Thang M; Leung, Calvin; Vermeiren, Simon; Novatchkova, Maria; Wenzel, Daniel; Cikes, Domagoj; Polyansky, Anton A; Kozieradzki, Ivona; Meixner, Arabella; Bellefroid, Eric J; Neely, G Gregory; Penninger, Josef M

    2015-01-01

    PR homology domain-containing member 12 (PRDM12) belongs to a family of conserved transcription factors implicated in cell fate decisions. Here we show that PRDM12 is a key regulator of sensory neuronal specification in Xenopus. Modeling of human PRDM12 mutations that cause hereditary sensory and autonomic neuropathy (HSAN) revealed remarkable conservation of the mutated residues in evolution. Expression of wild-type human PRDM12 in Xenopus induced the expression of sensory neuronal markers, which was reduced using various human PRDM12 mutants. In Drosophila, we identified Hamlet as the functional PRDM12 homolog that controls nociceptive behavior in sensory neurons. Furthermore, expression analysis of human patient fibroblasts with PRDM12 mutations uncovered possible downstream target genes. Knockdown of several of these target genes including thyrotropin-releasing hormone degrading enzyme (TRHDE) in Drosophila sensory neurons resulted in altered cellular morphology and impaired nociception. These data show that PRDM12 and its functional fly homolog Hamlet are evolutionary conserved master regulators of sensory neuronal specification and play a critical role in pain perception. Our data also uncover novel pathways in multiple species that regulate evolutionary conserved nociception. PMID:25891934

  1. An Anomalous Type IV Secretion System in Rickettsia Is Evolutionarily Conserved

    PubMed Central

    Gillespie, Joseph J.; Ammerman, Nicole C.; Dreher-Lesnick, Sheila M.; Rahman, M. Sayeedur; Worley, Micah J.; Setubal, Joao C.; Sobral, Bruno S.; Azad, Abdu F.

    2009-01-01

    Background Bacterial type IV secretion systems (T4SSs) comprise a diverse transporter family functioning in conjugation, competence, and effector molecule (DNA and/or protein) translocation. Thirteen genome sequences from Rickettsia, obligate intracellular symbionts/pathogens of a wide range of eukaryotes, have revealed a reduced T4SS relative to the Agrobacterium tumefaciens archetype (vir). However, the Rickettsia T4SS has not been functionally characterized for its role in symbiosis/virulence, and none of its substrates are known. Results Superimposition of T4SS structural/functional information over previously identified Rickettsia components implicate a functional Rickettsia T4SS. virB4, virB8 and virB9 are duplicated, yet only one copy of each has the conserved features of similar genes in other T4SSs. An extraordinarily duplicated VirB6 gene encodes five hydrophobic proteins conserved only in a short region known to be involved in DNA transfer in A. tumefaciens. virB1, virB2 and virB7 are newly identified, revealing a Rickettsia T4SS lacking only virB5 relative to the vir archetype. Phylogeny estimation suggests vertical inheritance of all components, despite gene rearrangements into an archipelago of five islets. Similarities of Rickettsia VirB7/VirB9 to ComB7/ComB9 proteins of ε-proteobacteria, as well as phylogenetic affinities to the Legionella lvh T4SS, imply the Rickettsiales ancestor acquired a vir-like locus from distantly related bacteria, perhaps while residing in a protozoan host. Modern modifications of these systems likely reflect diversification with various eukaryotic host cells. Conclusion We present the rvh (Rickettsiales vir homolog) T4SS, an evolutionary conserved transporter with an unknown role in rickettsial biology. This work lays the foundation for future laboratory characterization of this system, and also identifies the Legionella lvh T4SS as a suitable genetic model. PMID:19279686

  2. Similarity-based gene detection: using COGs to find evolutionarily-conserved ORFs

    PubMed Central

    Powell, Bradford C; Hutchison, Clyde A

    2006-01-01

    Background Experimental verification of gene products has not kept pace with the rapid growth of microbial sequence information. However, existing annotations of gene locations contain sufficient information to screen for probable errors. Furthermore, comparisons among genomes become more informative as more genomes are examined. We studied all open reading frames (ORFs) of at least 30 codons from the genomes of 27 sequenced bacterial strains. We grouped the potential peptide sequences encoded from the ORFs by forming Clusters of Orthologous Groups (COGs). We used this grouping in order to find homologous relationships that would not be distinguishable from noise when using simple BLAST searches. Although COG analysis was initially developed to group annotated genes, we applied it to the task of grouping anonymous DNA sequences that may encode proteins. Results "Mixed COGs" of ORFs (clusters in which some sequences correspond to annotated genes and some do not) are attractive targets when seeking errors of gene predicion. Examination of mixed COGs reveals some situations in which genes appear to have been missed in current annotations and a smaller number of regions that appear to have been annotated as gene loci erroneously. This technique can also be used to detect potential pseudogenes or sequencing errors. Our method uses an adjustable parameter for degree of conservation among the studied genomes (stringency). We detail results for one level of stringency at which we found 83 potential genes which had not previously been identified, 60 potential pseudogenes, and 7 sequences with existing gene annotations that are probably incorrect. Conclusion Systematic study of sequence conservation offers a way to improve existing annotations by identifying potentially homologous regions where the annotation of the presence or absence of a gene is inconsistent among genomes. PMID:16423288

  3. Small ruminant lentiviral Vif proteins commonly utilize cyclophilin A, an evolutionarily and structurally conserved protein, to degrade ovine and caprine APOBEC3 proteins.

    PubMed

    Yoshikawa, Rokusuke; Izumi, Taisuke; Nakano, Yusuke; Yamada, Eri; Moriwaki, Miyu; Misawa, Naoko; Ren, Fengrong; Kobayashi, Tomoko; Koyanagi, Yoshio; Sato, Kei

    2016-06-01

    Mammals have co-evolved with retroviruses, including lentiviruses, over a long period. Evidence supporting this contention is that viral infectivity factor (Vif) encoded by lentiviruses antagonizes the anti-viral action of cellular apolipoprotein B mRNA editing enzyme catalytic polypeptide-like 3 (APOBEC3) of the host. To orchestrate E3 ubiquitin ligase complex for APOBEC3 degradation, Vifs utilize mammalian proteins such as core-binding factor beta (CBFB; for primate lentiviruses) or cyclophilin A (CYPA; for Maedi-Visna virus [MVV]). However, the co-evolutionary relationship between lentiviral Vif and the mammalian proteins associated with Vif-mediated APOBEC3 degradation is poorly understood. Moreover, it is unclear whether Vif proteins of small ruminant lentiviruses (SRLVs), including MVV and caprine arthritis encephalitis virus (CAEV), commonly utilize CYPA to degrade the APOBEC3 of their hosts. In this study, molecular phylogenetic and protein homology modeling revealed that Vif co-factors are evolutionarily and structurally conserved. It was also found that not only MVV but also CAEV Vifs degrade APOBEC3 of both sheep and goats and that CAEV Vifs interact with CYPA. These findings suggest that lentiviral Vifs chose evolutionarily and structurally stable proteins as their partners (e.g., CBFB or CYPA) for APOBEC3 degradation and, particularly, that SRLV Vifs evolved to utilize CYPA as their co-factor in degradation of ovine and caprine APOBEC3. PMID:27193350

  4. Identification of Evolutionarily Conserved Md1 Splice Variants That Regulate Innate Immunity through Differential Induction of NF-кB.

    PubMed

    Candel, Sergio; Tyrkalska, Sylwia D; García-Moreno, Diana; Meseguer, José; Mulero, Victoriano

    2016-08-15

    Although in mammals the TLR4/myeloid differentiation factor (MD)2/CD14 complex is responsible for the recognition of bacterial LPS, and it is known that the RP105/MD1 complex negatively regulates TLR4 signaling, the evolutionary history of LPS recognition remains enigmatic. Thus, zebrafish has orthologs of mammalian TLR4 (Tlr4a and Tlr4b), RP105, and MD1, but MD2 and CD14 seem to be absent from all fish genomes available to date. In addition, and to make the story more intriguing, zebrafish Tlr4a and Tlr4b do not recognize LPS, whereas the zebrafish Rp105/Md1 complex unexpectedly participates in the regulation of innate immunity and viral resistance. In this work, we report the identification of two novel splice variants of Md1, which are expressed at similar levels as full-length Md1 in the main immune-related organs of zebrafish and are highly induced upon viral infection. One of these splice variants, which is also expressed by mouse macrophages, lacks three conserved cysteine residues that have been shown to form disulfide bonds that are crucial for the three-dimensional structure of the MD-2-related lipid recognition domain of Md1. Functional studies in zebrafish demonstrate that this evolutionarily conserved splice variant shows higher antiviral activity than full-length Md1, but reduced proinflammatory activity, due to an impaired ability to activate the master regulator of inflammation, NF-κB. These results uncover a previously unappreciated evolutionarily conserved Md1 splice variant with important functions in the regulation of innate immunity and the antiviral response in zebrafish, and point to the need for additional functional studies in mammals on this little explored molecule. PMID:27402697

  5. The viral transactivator HBx protein exhibits a high potential for regulation via phosphorylation through an evolutionarily conserved mechanism

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Hepatitis B virus (HBV) encodes an oncogenic factor, HBx, which is a multifunctional protein that can induce dysfunctional regulation of signaling pathways, transcription, and cell cycle progression, among other processes, through interactions with target host factors. The subcellular localization of HBx is both cytoplasmic and nuclear. This dynamic distribution of HBx could be essential to the multiple roles of the protein at different stages during HBV infection. Transactivational functions of HBx may be exerted both in the nucleus, via interaction with host DNA-binding proteins, and in the cytoplasm, via signaling pathways. Although there have been many studies describing different pathways altered by HBx, and its innumerable binding partners, the molecular mechanism that regulates its different roles has been difficult to elucidate. Methods In the current study, we took a bioinformatics approach to investigate whether the viral protein HBx might be regulated via phosphorylation by an evolutionarily conserved mechanism. Results We found that the phylogenetically conserved residues Ser25 and Ser41 (both within the negative regulatory domain), and Thr81 (in the transactivation domain) are predicted to be phosphorylated. By molecular 3D modeling of HBx, we further show these residues are all predicted to be exposed on the surface of the protein, making them easily accesible to these types of modifications. Furthermore, we have also identified Yin Yang sites that might have the potential to be phosphorylated and O-β-GlcNAc interplay at the same residues. Conclusions Thus, we propose that the different roles of HBx displayed in different subcellular locations might be regulated by an evolutionarily conserved mechanism of posttranslational modification, via phosphorylation. PMID:23079056

  6. An Evolutionarily Conserved Enhancer Regulates Bmp4 Expression in Developing Incisor and Limb Bud

    PubMed Central

    O’Connell, Daniel J.; Aboukhalil, Anton; Li, Xiao; Choe, Sung E.; Ho, Joshua W. K.; Turbe-Doan, Annick; Robertson, Erin A.; Olsen, Bjorn R.; Bulyk, Martha L.; Amendt, Brad A.; Maas, Richard L.

    2012-01-01

    To elucidate the transcriptional regulation of Bmp4 expression during organogenesis, we used phylogenetic footprinting and transgenic reporter analyses to identify Bmp4 cis-regulatory modules (CRMs). These analyses identified a regulatory region located ∼46 kb upstream of the mouse Bmp4 transcription start site that had previously been shown to direct expression in lateral plate mesoderm. We refined this regulatory region to a 396-bp minimal enhancer, and show that it recapitulates features of endogenous Bmp4 expression in developing mandibular arch ectoderm and incisor epithelium during the initiation-stage of tooth development. In addition, this enhancer directs expression in the apical ectodermal ridge (AER) of the developing limb and in anterior and posterior limb mesenchyme. Transcript profiling of E11.5 mouse incisor dental lamina, together with protein binding microarray (PBM) analyses, allowed identification of a conserved DNA binding motif in the Bmp4 enhancer for Pitx homeoproteins, which are also expressed in the developing mandibular and incisor epithelium. In vitro electrophoretic mobility shift assays (EMSA) and in vivo transgenic reporter mutational analyses revealed that this site supports Pitx binding and that the site is necessary to recapitulate aspects of endogenous Bmp4 expression in developing craniofacial and limb tissues. Finally, Pitx2 chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) demonstrated direct binding of Pitx2 to this Bmp4 enhancer site in a dental epithelial cell line. These results establish a direct molecular regulatory link between Pitx family members and Bmp4 gene expression in developing incisor epithelium. PMID:22701669

  7. An Evolutionarily Conserved PLC-PKD-TFEB Pathway for Host Defense.

    PubMed

    Najibi, Mehran; Labed, Sid Ahmed; Visvikis, Orane; Irazoqui, Javier Elbio

    2016-05-24

    The mechanisms that tightly control the transcription of host defense genes have not been fully elucidated. We previously identified TFEB as a transcription factor important for host defense, but the mechanisms that regulate TFEB during infection remained unknown. Here, we used C. elegans to discover a pathway that activates TFEB during infection. Gene dkf-1, which encodes a homolog of protein kinase D (PKD), was required for TFEB activation in nematodes infected with Staphylococcus aureus. Conversely, pharmacological activation of PKD was sufficient to activate TFEB. Furthermore, phospholipase C (PLC) gene plc-1 was also required for TFEB activation, downstream of Gαq homolog egl-30 and upstream of dkf-1. Using reverse and chemical genetics, we discovered a similar PLC-PKD-TFEB axis in Salmonella-infected mouse macrophages. In addition, PKCα was required in macrophages. These observations reveal a previously unknown host defense signaling pathway, which has been conserved across one billion years of evolution. PMID:27184844

  8. Comparative Analysis of Evolutionarily Conserved Motifs of Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor 2 (HER2) Predicts Novel Potential Therapeutic Epitopes

    PubMed Central

    Deng, Xiaohong; Zheng, Xuxu; Yang, Huanming; Moreira, José Manuel Afonso; Brünner, Nils; Christensen, Henrik

    2014-01-01

    Overexpression of human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) is associated with tumor aggressiveness and poor prognosis in breast cancer. With the availability of therapeutic antibodies against HER2, great strides have been made in the clinical management of HER2 overexpressing breast cancer. However, de novo and acquired resistance to these antibodies presents a serious limitation to successful HER2 targeting treatment. The identification of novel epitopes of HER2 that can be used for functional/region-specific blockade could represent a central step in the development of new clinically relevant anti-HER2 antibodies. In the present study, we present a novel computational approach as an auxiliary tool for identification of novel HER2 epitopes. We hypothesized that the structurally and linearly evolutionarily conserved motifs of the extracellular domain of HER2 (ECD HER2) contain potential druggable epitopes/targets. We employed the PROSITE Scan to detect structurally conserved motifs and PRINTS to search for linearly conserved motifs of ECD HER2. We found that the epitopes recognized by trastuzumab and pertuzumab are located in the predicted conserved motifs of ECD HER2, supporting our initial hypothesis. Considering that structurally and linearly conserved motifs can provide functional specific configurations, we propose that by comparing the two types of conserved motifs, additional druggable epitopes/targets in the ECD HER2 protein can be identified, which can be further modified for potential therapeutic application. Thus, this novel computational process for predicting or searching for potential epitopes or key target sites may contribute to epitope-based vaccine and function-selected drug design, especially when x-ray crystal structure protein data is not available. PMID:25192037

  9. Genome-Wide Identification of Evolutionarily Conserved Alternative Splicing Events in Flowering Plants

    PubMed Central

    Chamala, Srikar; Feng, Guanqiao; Chavarro, Carolina; Barbazuk, W. Brad

    2015-01-01

    Alternative splicing (AS) plays important roles in many plant functions, but its conservation across the plant kingdom is not known. We describe a methodology to identify AS events and identify conserved AS events across large phylogenetic distances using RNA-Seq datasets. We applied this methodology to transcriptome data from nine angiosperms including Amborella, the single sister species to all other extant flowering plants. AS events within 40–70% of the expressed multi-exonic genes per species were found, 27,120 of which are conserved among two or more of the taxa studied. While many events are species specific, many others are shared across long evolutionary distances suggesting they have functional significance. Conservation of AS event data provides an estimate of the number of ancestral AS events present at each node of the tree representing the nine species studied. Furthermore, the presence or absence of AS isoforms between species with different whole genome duplication (WGD) histories provides the opportunity to examine the impact of WDG on AS potential. Examining AS in gene families identifies those with high rates of AS, and conservation can distinguish ancient events vs. recent or species specific adaptations. The MADS-box and SR protein families are found to represent families with low and high occurrences of AS, respectively, yet their AS events were likely present in the MRCA of angiosperms. PMID:25859541

  10. The evolutionarily conserved Krueppel-associated box domain defines a subfamily of eukaryotic multifingered proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Bellefroid, E.J.; Poncelet, D.A.; Lecocq, P.J.; Revelant, O.; Martial, J.A. )

    1991-05-01

    The authors have previously shown that the human genome includes hundreds of genes coding for putative factors related to the Krueppel zinc-finger protein, which regulates Drosophila segmentation. They report herein that about one-third of these genes code for proteins that share a very conserved region of about 75 amino acids in their N-terminal nonfinger portion. Homologous regions are found in a number of previously described finger proteins, including mouse Zfp-1 and Xenopus Xfin. They named this region the Krueppel-associated box (KRAB). This domain has the potential to form two amphipathic {alpha}-helices. Southern blot analysis of zoo blots suggests that the Krueppel-associated box is highly conserved during evolution. Northern blot analysis shows that these genes are expressed in most adult tissues and are down-regulated during in vitro terminal differentiation of human myeloid cells.

  11. CPhos: a program to calculate and visualize evolutionarily conserved functional phosphorylation sites.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Boyang; Pisitkun, Trairak; Hoffert, Jason D; Knepper, Mark A; Saeed, Fahad

    2012-11-01

    Profiling using high-throughput MS has discovered an overwhelming number of novel protein phosphorylation sites ("phosphosites"). However, the functional relevance of these sites is not always clear. In light of recent studies on the evolutionary mechanism of phosphorylation, we have developed CPhos, a Java program that can assess the conservation of phosphosites among species using an information theory-based approach. The degree of conservation established using CPhos can be used to assess the functional significance of phosphosites. CPhos has a user friendly graphical user interface and is available both as a web service and as a standalone Java application to assist phosphoproteomic researchers in analyzing and prioritizing lists of phosphosites for further experimental validation. CPhos can be accessed or downloaded at http://helixweb.nih.gov/CPhos/. PMID:23001821

  12. APeg3: regulation of Peg3 through an evolutionarily conserved ncRNA

    PubMed Central

    Frey, Wesley D.

    2014-01-01

    Mammalian APeg3 is an antisense gene that is localized within the 3′-untranslated region of the imprinted gene, Peg3. APeg3 is expressed only in the vasopressinergic neurons of the hypothalamus, thus is predicted to play significant roles in this specific area of the brain. In the current study, we investigate the functions of APeg3 with comparative genomics and cell line-based functional approaches. The transcribed region of APeg3 displays high levels of sequence conservation among placental mammals, but without any obvious open reading frame, suggesting that APeg3 may have been selected as a ncRNA gene during eutherian evolution. This has been further supported by the detection of a conserved local RNA secondary structure within APeg3. RNA secondary structure analyses indicate a single conserved hairpin-loop structure towards the 5′ end of the transcript. The results from cell line-based transfection experiments demonstrate that APeg3 has the potential to down-regulate the transcription and protein levels of Peg3. The observed down-regulation by APeg3 is also somewhat orientation-independent. Overall, these results suggest that APeg3 has evolved as a ncRNA gene and controls the function of its sense gene Peg3 within specific neuronal cells. PMID:24582979

  13. Regulation of Splicing Factors by Alternative Splicing and NMD Is Conserved between Kingdoms Yet Evolutionarily Flexible

    PubMed Central

    Lareau, Liana F.; Brenner, Steven E.

    2015-01-01

    Ultraconserved elements, unusually long regions of perfect sequence identity, are found in genes encoding numerous RNA-binding proteins including arginine-serine rich (SR) splicing factors. Expression of these genes is regulated via alternative splicing of the ultraconserved regions to yield mRNAs that are degraded by nonsense-mediated mRNA decay (NMD), a process termed unproductive splicing (Lareau et al. 2007; Ni et al. 2007). As all human SR genes are affected by alternative splicing and NMD, one might expect this regulation to have originated in an early SR gene and persisted as duplications expanded the SR family. But in fact, unproductive splicing of most human SR genes arose independently (Lareau et al. 2007). This paradox led us to investigate the origin and proliferation of unproductive splicing in SR genes. We demonstrate that unproductive splicing of the splicing factor SRSF5 (SRp40) is conserved among all animals and even observed in fungi; this is a rare example of alternative splicing conserved between kingdoms, yet its effect is to trigger mRNA degradation. As the gene duplicated, the ancient unproductive splicing was lost in paralogs, and distinct unproductive splicing evolved rapidly and repeatedly to take its place. SR genes have consistently employed unproductive splicing, and while it is exceptionally conserved in some of these genes, turnover in specific events among paralogs shows flexible means to the same regulatory end. PMID:25576366

  14. The roles of evolutionarily conserved functional modules in cilia-related trafficking

    PubMed Central

    Sung, Ching-Hwa; Leroux, Michel R.

    2014-01-01

    Cilia are present across most eukaryotic phyla and have diverse sensory and motility roles in animal physiology, cell signalling and development. Their biogenesis and maintenance depend on vesicular and intraciliary (intraflagellar) trafficking pathways that share conserved structural and functional modules. The functional units of the interconnected pathways, which include proteins involved in membrane coating as well as small GTPases and their accessory factors, were first experimentally associated with canonical vesicular trafficking. These components are, however, ancient, having been co-opted by the ancestral eukaryote to establish the ciliary organelle, and their study can inform us about ciliary biology in higher organisms. PMID:24296415

  15. Two evolutionarily conserved repression domains in the Drosophila Kruppel protein differ in activator specificity.

    PubMed Central

    Hanna-Rose, W; Licht, J D; Hansen, U

    1997-01-01

    To identify biologically functional regions in the product of the Drosophila melanogaster gene Kruppel, we cloned the Kruppel homolog from Drosophila virilis. Both the previously identified amino (N)-terminal repression region and the DNA-binding region of the D. virilis Kruppel protein are greater than 96% identical to those of the D. melanogaster Kruppel protein, demonstrating a selective pressure to maintain the integrity of each region during 60 million to 80 million years of evolution. An additional region in the carboxyl (C) terminus of Kruppel that was most highly conserved was examined further. A 42-amino-acid stretch within the conserved C-terminal region also encoded a transferable repression domain. The short, C-terminal repression region is a composite of three subregions of distinct amino acid composition, each containing a high proportion of either basic, proline, or acidic residues. Mutagenesis experiments demonstrated, unexpectedly, that the acidic residues contribute to repression function. Both the N-terminal and C-terminal repression regions were tested for the ability to affect transcription mediated by a variety of activator proteins. The N-terminal repression region was able to inhibit transcription in the presence of multiple activators. However, the C-terminal repression region inhibited transcription by only a subset of the activator proteins. The different activator specificities of the two regions suggest that they repress transcription by different mechanisms and may play distinct biological roles during Drosophila development. PMID:9234738

  16. Production of bioactive diterpenoids in the euphorbiaceae depends on evolutionarily conserved gene clusters.

    PubMed

    King, Andrew J; Brown, Geoffrey D; Gilday, Alison D; Larson, Tony R; Graham, Ian A

    2014-08-01

    The Euphorbiaceae produce a diverse range of diterpenoids, many of which have pharmacological activities. These diterpenoids include ingenol mebutate, which is licensed for the treatment of a precancerous skin condition (actinic keratosis), and phorbol derivatives such as resiniferatoxin and prostratin, which are undergoing investigation for the treatment of severe pain and HIV, respectively. Despite the interest in these diterpenoids, their biosynthesis is poorly understood at present, with the only characterized step being the conversion of geranylgeranyl pyrophosphate into casbene. Here, we report a physical cluster of diterpenoid biosynthetic genes from castor (Ricinus communis), including casbene synthases and cytochrome P450s from the CYP726A subfamily. CYP726A14, CYP726A17, and CYP726A18 were able to catalyze 5-oxidation of casbene, a conserved oxidation step in the biosynthesis of this family of medicinally important diterpenoids. CYP726A16 catalyzed 7,8-epoxidation of 5-keto-casbene and CYP726A15 catalyzed 5-oxidation of neocembrene. Evidence of similar gene clustering was also found in two other Euphorbiaceae, including Euphorbia peplus, the source organism of ingenol mebutate. These results demonstrate conservation of gene clusters at the higher taxonomic level of the plant family and that this phenomenon could prove useful in further elucidating diterpenoid biosynthetic pathways. PMID:25172144

  17. An Evolutionarily Conserved DOF-CONSTANS Module Controls Plant Photoperiodic Signaling.

    PubMed

    Lucas-Reina, Eva; Romero-Campero, Francisco J; Romero, José M; Valverde, Federico

    2015-06-01

    The response to daylength is a crucial process that evolved very early in plant evolution, entitling the early green eukaryote to predict seasonal variability and attune its physiological responses to the environment. The photoperiod responses evolved into the complex signaling pathways that govern the angiosperm floral transition today. The Chlamydomonas reinhardtii DNA-Binding with One Finger (CrDOF) gene controls transcription in a photoperiod-dependent manner, and its misexpression influences algal growth and viability. In short days, CrDOF enhances CrCO expression, a homolog of plant CONSTANS (CO), by direct binding to its promoter, while it reduces the expression of cell division genes in long days independently of CrCO. In Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana), transgenic plants overexpressing CrDOF show floral delay and reduced expression of the photoperiodic genes CO and FLOWERING LOCUS T. The conservation of the DOF-CO module during plant evolution could be an important clue to understanding diversification by the inheritance of conserved gene toolkits in key developmental programs. PMID:25897001

  18. An Evolutionarily Conserved DOF-CONSTANS Module Controls Plant Photoperiodic Signaling1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    The response to daylength is a crucial process that evolved very early in plant evolution, entitling the early green eukaryote to predict seasonal variability and attune its physiological responses to the environment. The photoperiod responses evolved into the complex signaling pathways that govern the angiosperm floral transition today. The Chlamydomonas reinhardtii DNA-Binding with One Finger (CrDOF) gene controls transcription in a photoperiod-dependent manner, and its misexpression influences algal growth and viability. In short days, CrDOF enhances CrCO expression, a homolog of plant CONSTANS (CO), by direct binding to its promoter, while it reduces the expression of cell division genes in long days independently of CrCO. In Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana), transgenic plants overexpressing CrDOF show floral delay and reduced expression of the photoperiodic genes CO and FLOWERING LOCUS T. The conservation of the DOF-CO module during plant evolution could be an important clue to understanding diversification by the inheritance of conserved gene toolkits in key developmental programs. PMID:25897001

  19. Characterization of evolutionarily conserved motifs involved in activity and regulation of the ABA-INSENSITIVE (ABI) 4 transcription factor.

    PubMed

    Gregorio, Josefat; Hernández-Bernal, Alma Fabiola; Cordoba, Elizabeth; León, Patricia

    2014-02-01

    In recent years, the transcription factor ABI4 has emerged as an important node of integration for external and internal signals such as nutrient status and hormone signaling that modulates critical transitions during the growth and development of plants. For this reason, understanding the mechanism of action and regulation of this protein represents an important step towards the elucidation of crosstalk mechanisms in plants. However, this understanding has been hindered due to the negligible levels of this protein as a result of multiple posttranscriptional regulations. To better understand the function and regulation of the ABI4 protein in this work, we performed a functional analysis of several evolutionarily conserved motifs. Based on these conserved motifs, we identified ortholog genes of ABI4 in different plant species. The functionality of the putative ortholog from Theobroma cacao was demonstrated in transient expression assays and in complementation studies in plants. The function of the highly conserved motifs was analyzed after their deletion or mutagenesis in the Arabidopsis ABI4 sequence using mesophyll protoplasts. This approach permitted us to immunologically detect the ABI4 protein and identify some of the mechanisms involved in its regulation. We identified sequences required for the nuclear localization (AP2-associated motif) as well as those for transcriptional activation function (LRP motif). Moreover, this approach showed that the protein stability of this transcription factor is controlled through protein degradation and subcellular localization and involves the AP2-associated and the PEST motifs. We demonstrated that the degradation of ABI4 protein through the PEST motif is mediated by the 26S proteasome in response to changes in the sugar levels. PMID:24046063

  20. The evolutionarily conserved BMP-binding protein Twisted gastrulation promotes BMP signalling

    PubMed Central

    Oelgeschläger, Michael; Larraín, Juan; Geissert, Douglas; De Robertis, Eddy M.

    2008-01-01

    Dorsal-ventral patterning in vertebrate and Drosophila embryos requires a conserved system of extracellular proteins to generate a positional information gradient. The components involved include bone morphogenetic proteins (BMP/Dpp), a BMP antagonist (Chordin/Short gastrulation; Chd/Sog) and a secreted metalloproteinase (Xolloid/Tolloid) that cleaves Chd/Sog. Here we describe Xenopus Twisted gastrulation (xTsg), another member of this signalling pathway. xTsg is expressed ventrally as part of the BMP-4 synexpression group and encodes a secreted BMP-binding protein that is a BMP signalling agonist. The data suggest a molecular mechanism by which xTsg dislodges latent BMPs bound to Chordin BMP-binding fragments generated by Xolloid cleavage, providing a permissive signal that allows high BMP signalling in the embryo. Drosophila Tsg also binds BMPs and is expressed dorsally, supporting the proposal that the dorsal-ventral axis was inverted in the course of animal evolution. PMID:10866189

  1. An actin cytoskeleton with evolutionarily conserved functions in the absence of canonical actin-binding proteins

    PubMed Central

    Paredez, Alexander R.; Assaf, Zoe June; Sept, David; Timofejeva, Ljudmilla; Dawson, Scott C.; Wang, Chung-Ju Rachel; Cande, W. Z.

    2011-01-01

    Giardia intestinalis, a human intestinal parasite and member of what is perhaps the earliest-diverging eukaryotic lineage, contains the most divergent eukaryotic actin identified to date and is the first eukaryote known to lack all canonical actin-binding proteins (ABPs). We sought to investigate the properties and functions of the actin cytoskeleton in Giardia to determine whether Giardia actin (giActin) has reduced or conserved roles in core cellular processes. In vitro polymerization of giActin produced filaments, indicating that this divergent actin is a true filament-forming actin. We generated an anti-giActin antibody to localize giActin throughout the cell cycle. GiActin localized to the cortex, nuclei, internal axonemes, and formed C-shaped filaments along the anterior of the cell and a flagella-bundling helix. These structures were regulated with the cell cycle and in encysting cells giActin was recruited to the Golgi-like cyst wall processing vesicles. Knockdown of giActin demonstrated that giActin functions in cell morphogenesis, membrane trafficking, and cytokinesis. Additionally, Giardia contains a single G protein, giRac, which affects the Giardia actin cytoskeleton independently of known target ABPs. These results imply that there exist ancestral and perhaps conserved roles for actin in core cellular processes that are independent of canonical ABPs. Of medical significance, the divergent giActin cytoskeleton is essential and commonly used actin-disrupting drugs do not depolymerize giActin structures. Therefore, the giActin cytoskeleton is a promising drug target for treating giardiasis, as we predict drugs that interfere with the Giardia actin cytoskeleton will not affect the mammalian host. PMID:21444821

  2. Comparative biology of the pentraxin protein family: evolutionarily conserved component of innate immune system.

    PubMed

    Armstrong, Peter B

    2015-01-01

    The immune system is based on the actions of the collection of specialized immune defense cells and their secreted proteins and peptides that defend the host against infection by parasites. Parasites are organisms that live part or all of their lives in close physical association with the host and extract nutrients from the host and, by releasing toxins and virulence factors, cause disease with the potential for injury and premature death of that host. Parasites of the metazoa can be viruses, eubacteria, fungi, protozoans, and other metazoans. The immune system operates to kill or eliminate parasites and eliminate or detoxify their toxins and virulence factors. Although some of the elements of immune systems are specific to a particular phylum of metazoans, others show extensive evolutionary conservation, being present in several or all major phyla of the metazoa. The pentraxins display this latter character in their roles in immune defense. Pentraxins have been documented in vertebrates, nonvertebrate chordates, arthropods, and mollusks and may be present in other taxa of metazoans. Presumably the pentraxins appeared early in the evolution of metazoa, prior to their evolutionary divergence in the Precambrian epoch into many phyla present today, and have been preserved for the 542 million years since that explosive evolutionary radiation. The fidelity with which these phyla have preserved the pentraxins suggests that the functions of these proteins are important for survival of the members of these diverse taxa of animals. PMID:25805121

  3. Dibutyl Phthalate Exposure Disrupts Evolutionarily Conserved Insulin and Glucagon-Like Signaling in Drosophila Males.

    PubMed

    Williams, Michael J; Wiemerslage, Lyle; Gohel, Priya; Kheder, Sania; Kothegala, Lakshmi V; Schiöth, Helgi B

    2016-06-01

    Phthalate diesters are commonly used as industrial plasticisers, as well as in cosmetics and skin care products, as a result people are constantly exposed to these xenobiotics. Recent epidemiological studies have found a correlation between circulating phthalate levels and type 2 diabetes, whereas animal studies indicate that phthalates are capable of disrupting endocrine signaling. Nonetheless, how phthalates interfere with metabolic function is still unclear. Here, we show that feeding Drosophila males the xenobiotic dibutyl phthalate (DBP) affects conserved insulin- and glucagon-like signaling. We report that raising flies on food containing DBP leads to starvation resistance, increased lipid storage, hyperglycemia, and hyperphagia. We go on to show that the starvation-resistance phenotype can be rescued by overexpression of the glucagon analogue adipokinetic hormone (Akh). Furthermore, although acute DBP exposure in adult flies is able to affect insulin levels, only chronic feeding influences Akh expression. We establish that raising flies on DBP-containing food or feeding adults DBP food affects the expression of homologous genes involved in xenobiotic and lipid metabolism (AHR [Drosophila ss], NR1I2 [Hr96], ABCB1 [MDR50], ABCC3 [MRP], and CYP3A4 [Cyp9f2]). Finally, we determined that the expression of these genes is also influenced by Akh. Our results provide comprehensive evidence that DBP can disrupt metabolism in Drosophila males, by regulating genes involved in glucose, lipid, and xenobiotic metabolism. PMID:27100621

  4. Positive regulation of c-Myc by cohesin is direct, and evolutionarily conserved

    PubMed Central

    Rhodes, Jenny M.; Bentley, Fiona K.; Print, Cristin G.; Dorsett, Dale; Misulovin, Ziva; Dickinson, Emma J.; Crosier, Kathryn E.; Crosier, Philip S.; Horsfield, Julia A.

    2010-01-01

    Contact between sister chromatids from S phase to anaphase depends on cohesin, a large multi-subunit protein complex. Mutations in sister chromatid cohesion proteins underlie the human developmental condition, Cornelia de Lange Syndrome. Roles for cohesin in regulating gene expression, sometimes in combination with CCCTC-binding factor (CTCF), have emerged. We analyzed zebrafish embryos null for cohesin subunit rad21 using microarrays to determine global effects of cohesin on gene expression during embryogenesis. This identified Rad21-associated gene networks that included myca (zebrafish c-myc), p53 and mdm2. In zebrafish, cohesin binds to the transcription start sites of p53 and mdm2, and depletion of either Rad21 or CTCF increased their transcription. In contrast, myca expression was strongly downregulated upon loss of Rad21 while depletion of CTCF had little effect. Depletion of Rad21 or the cohesin-loading factor Nipped-B in Drosophila cells also reduced expression of myc and Myc target genes. Cohesin bound the transcription start site plus an upstream predicted CTCF binding site at zebrafish myca. Binding and positive regulation of the c-Myc gene by cohesin is conserved through evolution, indicating this regulation is likely to be direct. The exact mechanism of regulation is unknown, but local changes in histone modification associated with transcription repression at the myca gene were observed in rad21 mutants. PMID:20553708

  5. Computational Analysis of an Evolutionarily Conserved VertebrateMuscle Alternative Splicing Program

    SciTech Connect

    Das, Debopriya; Clark, Tyson A.; Schweitzer, Anthony; Marr,Henry; Yamamoto, Miki L.; Parra, Marilyn K.; Arribere, Josh; Minovitsky,Simon; Dubchak, Inna; Blume, John E.; Conboy, John G.

    2006-06-15

    A novel exon microarray format that probes gene expression with single exon resolution was employed to elucidate critical features of a vertebrate muscle alternative splicing program. A dataset of 56 microarray-defined, muscle-enriched exons and their flanking introns were examined computationally in order to investigate coordination of the muscle splicing program. Candidate intron regulatory motifs were required to meet several stringent criteria: significant over-representation near muscle-enriched exons, correlation with muscle expression, and phylogenetic conservation among genomes of several vertebrate orders. Three classes of regulatory motifs were identified in the proximal downstream intron, within 200nt of the target exons: UGCAUG, a specific binding site for Fox-1 related splicing factors; ACUAAC, a novel branchpoint-like element; and UG-/UGC-rich elements characteristic of binding sites for CELF splicing factors. UGCAUG was remarkably enriched, being present in nearly one-half of all cases. These studies suggest that Fox and CELF splicing factors play a major role in enforcing the muscle-specific alternative splicing program, facilitating expression of a set of unique isoforms of cytoskeletal proteins that are critical to muscle cell differentiation. Supplementary materials: There are four supplementary tables and one supplementary figure. The tables provide additional detailed information concerning the muscle-enriched datasets, and about over-represented oligonucleotide sequences in the flanking introns. The supplementary figure shows RT-PCR data confirming the muscle-enriched expression of exons predicted from the microarray analysis.

  6. An Evolutionarily Conserved Long Noncoding RNA TUNA Controls Pluripotency and Neural Lineage Commitment

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Nianwei; Chang, Kung-Yen; Li, Zhonghan; Gates, Keith; Rana, Zacharia A.; Dang, Jason; Zhang, Danhua; Han, Tianxu; Yang, Chao-Shun; Cunningham, Thomas J.; Head, Steven R.; Duester, Gregg; Dong, Duc; Rana, Tariq M.

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY Here, we generated the first genome-scale shRNA library targeting lincRNAs in the mouse. We performed an unbiased loss-of-function study in mouse embryonic stem cells (mESCs) and identified 20 novel lincRNAs involved in the maintenance of pluripotency. Among these, TUNA (Tcl1 Upstream Neuron-Associated lincRNA), was required for pluripotency and formed a complex with three RNA-binding proteins (RBPs). The TUNA–RBP complex was detected at the promoters of Nanog, Sox2, and Fgf4, and knockdown of TUNA or the individual RBPs inhibited neural differentiation of mESCs. TUNA showed striking evolutionary conservation of both sequence and central nervous system-restricted expression in vertebrates. Accordingly, knockdown of tuna in zebrafish caused impaired locomotor function, and TUNA expression in the brains of Huntington’s patients was significantly associated with disease grade. Our results suggest that the lincRNA TUNA plays a vital role in pluripotency and neural differentiation of ESCs and is associated with neurological function of adult vertebrates. PMID:24530304

  7. Eukaryotic Initiation Factor 6, an evolutionarily conserved regulator of ribosome biogenesis and protein translation

    SciTech Connect

    Guo, Jianjun; Jin, Zhaoqing; Yang, Xiaohan; Li, Jian-Feng; Chen, Jay

    2011-01-01

    We recently identified Receptor for Activated C Kinase 1 (RACK1) as one of the molecular links between abscisic acid (ABA) signaling and its regulation on protein translation. Moreover, we identified Eukaryotic Initiation Factor 6 (eIF6) as an interacting partner of RACK1. Because the interaction between RACK1 and eIF6 in mammalian cells is known to regulate the ribosome assembly step of protein translation initiation, it was hypothesized that the same process of protein translation in Arabidopsis is also regulated by RACK1 and eIF6. In this article, we analyzed the amino acid sequences of eIF6 in different species from different lineages and discovered some intriguing differences in protein phosphorylation sites that may contribute to its action in ribosome assembly and biogenesis. In addition, we discovered that, distinct from non-plant organisms in which eIF6 is encoded by a single gene, all sequenced plant genomes contain two or more copies of eIF6 genes. While one copy of plant eIF6 is expressed ubiquitously and might possess the conserved function in ribosome biogenesis and protein translation, the other copy seems to be only expressed in specific organs and therefore may have gained some new functions. We proposed some important studies that may help us better understand the function of eIF6 in plants.

  8. Nucleoplasmic Lamin A/C and Polycomb group of proteins: An evolutionarily conserved interplay

    PubMed Central

    Marullo, F.; Cesarini, E.; Antonelli, L.; Gregoretti, F.; Oliva, G.; Lanzuolo, C.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Nuclear lamins are the main components of the nuclear lamina at the nuclear periphery, providing mechanical support to the nucleus. However, recent findings suggest that lamins also reside in the nuclear interior, as a distinct and dynamic pool with critical roles in transcriptional regulation. In our work we found a functional and evolutionary conserved crosstalk between Lamin A/C and the Polycomb group (PcG) of proteins, this being required for the maintenance of the PcG repressive functions. Indeed, Lamin A/C knock-down causes PcG foci dispersion and defects in PcG-mediated higher order structures, thereby leading to impaired PcG mediated transcriptional repression. By using ad-hoc algorithms for image analysis and PLA approaches we hereby show that PcG proteins are preferentially located in the nuclear interior where they interact with nucleoplasmic Lamin A/C. Taken together, our findings suggest that nuclear components, such as Lamin A/C, functionally interact with epigenetic factors to ensure the correct transcriptional program maintenance. PMID:26930442

  9. Drosophila EYA regulates the immune response against DNA through an evolutionarily conserved threonine phosphatase motif.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xi; Sano, Teruyuki; Guan, Yongsheng; Nagata, Shigekazu; Hoffmann, Jules A; Fukuyama, Hidehiro

    2012-01-01

    Innate immune responses against DNA are essential to counter both pathogen infections and tissue damages. Mammalian EYAs were recently shown to play a role in regulating the innate immune responses against DNA. Here, we demonstrate that the unique Drosophila eya gene is also involved in the response specific to DNA. Haploinsufficiency of eya in mutants deficient for lysosomal DNase activity (DNaseII) reduces antimicrobial peptide gene expression, a hallmark for immune responses in flies. Like the mammalian orthologues, Drosophila EYA features a N-terminal threonine and C-terminal tyrosine phosphatase domain. Through the generation of a series of mutant EYA fly strains, we show that the threonine phosphatase domain, but not the tyrosine phosphatase domain, is responsible for the innate immune response against DNA. A similar role for the threonine phosphatase domain in mammalian EYA4 had been surmised on the basis of in vitro studies. Furthermore EYA associates with IKKβ and full-length RELISH, and the induction of the IMD pathway-dependent antimicrobial peptide gene is independent of SO. Our data provide the first in vivo demonstration for the immune function of EYA and point to their conserved immune function in response to endogenous DNA, throughout evolution. PMID:22916150

  10. Antioxidant properties of UCP1 are evolutionarily conserved in mammals and buffer mitochondrial reactive oxygen species.

    PubMed

    Oelkrug, Rebecca; Goetze, Nadja; Meyer, Carola W; Jastroch, Martin

    2014-12-01

    Mitochondrial uncoupling reduces reactive oxygen species (ROS) production and appears to be important for cellular signaling/protection, making it a focus for the treatment of metabolic and age-related diseases. Whereas the physiological role of uncoupling protein 1 (UCP1) of brown adipose tissue is established for thermogenesis, the function of UCP1 in the reduction of ROS in cold-exposed animals is currently under debate. Here, we investigated the role of UCP1 in mitochondrial ROS handling in the Lesser hedgehog tenrec (Echinops telfairi), a unique protoendothermic Malagasy mammal with recently identified brown adipose tissue (BAT). We show that the reduction of ROS by UCP1 activity also occurs in BAT mitochondria of the tenrec, suggesting that the antioxidative role of UCP1 is an ancient mammalian trait. Our analysis shows that the quantity of UCP1 displays strong control over mitochondrial hydrogen peroxide release, whereas other factors, such as mild cold, nonshivering thermogenesis, oxidative capacity, and mitochondrial respiration, do not correlate. Furthermore, hydrogen peroxide release from recoupled BAT mitochondria was positively associated with mitochondrial membrane potential. These findings led to a model of UCP1 controlling mitochondrial ROS release and, presumably, being controlled by high membrane potential, as proposed in the canonical model of "mild uncoupling". Our study further promotes a conserved role for UCP1 in the prevention of oxidative stress, which was presumably established during evolution before UCP1 was physiologically integrated into nonshivering thermogenesis. PMID:25224037

  11. Evolutionarily conserved sites in yeast tropomyosin function in cell polarity, transport and contractile ring formation

    PubMed Central

    Cranz-Mileva, Susanne; MacTaggart, Brittany; Russell, Jacquelyn; Hitchcock-DeGregori, Sarah E.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Tropomyosin is a coiled-coil protein that binds and regulates actin filaments. The tropomyosin gene in Schizosaccharomyces pombe, cdc8, is required for formation of actin cables, contractile rings, and polar localization of actin patches. The roles of conserved residues were investigated in gene replacement mutants. The work validates an evolution-based approach to identify tropomyosin functions in living cells and sites of potential interactions with other proteins. A cdc8 mutant with near-normal actin affinity affects patch polarization and vacuole fusion, possibly by affecting Myo52p, a class V myosin, function. The presence of labile residual cell attachments suggests a delay in completion of cell division and redistribution of cell patches following cytokinesis. Another mutant with a mild phenotype is synthetic negative with GFP-fimbrin, inferring involvement of the mutated tropomyosin sites in interaction between the two proteins. Proteins that assemble in the contractile ring region before actin do so in a mutant cdc8 strain that cannot assemble condensed actin rings, yet some cells can divide. Of general significance, LifeAct-GFP negatively affects the actin cytoskeleton, indicating caution in its use as a biomarker for actin filaments. PMID:26187949

  12. Maximal Expression of the Evolutionarily Conserved Slit2 Gene Promoter Requires Sp1.

    PubMed

    Saunders, Jacquelyn; Wisidagama, D Roonalika; Morford, Travis; Malone, Cindy S

    2016-08-01

    Slit2 is a neural axon guidance and chemorepellent protein that stimulates motility in a variety of cell types. The role of Slit2 in neural development and neoplastic growth and migration has been well established, while the genetic mechanisms underlying regulation of the Slit2 gene have not. We identified the core and proximal promoter of Slit2 by mapping multiple transcriptional start sites, analyzing transcriptional activity, and confirming sequence homology for the Slit2 proximal promoter among a number of species. Deletion series and transient transfection identified the Slit2 proximal promoter as within 399 base pairs upstream of the start of transcription. A crucial region for full expression of the Slit2 proximal promoter lies between 399 base pairs and 296 base pairs upstream of the start of transcription. Computer modeling identified three transcription factor-binding consensus sites within this region, of which only site-directed mutagenesis of one of the two identified Sp1 consensus sites inhibited transcriptional activity of the Slit2 proximal promoter (-399 to +253). Bioinformatics analysis of the Slit2 proximal promoter -399 base pair to -296 base pair region shows high sequence conservation over twenty-two species, and that this region follows an expected pattern of sequence divergence through evolution. PMID:26456684

  13. An evolutionarily conserved mode of modulation of Shaw-like K⁺ channels.

    PubMed

    Cotella, Diego; Hernandez-Enriquez, Berenice; Duan, Zhibing; Wu, Xilong; Gazula, Valeswara-Rao; Brown, Maile R; Kaczmarek, Leonard K; Sesti, Federico

    2013-04-01

    Voltage-gated K(+) channels of the Shaw family (also known as the KCNC or Kv3 family) play pivotal roles in mammalian brains, and genetic or pharmacological disruption of their activities in mice results in a spectrum of behavioral defects. We have used the model system of Caenorhabditis elegans to elucidate conserved molecular mechanisms that regulate these channels. We have now found that the C. elegans Shaw channel KHT-1, and its mammalian homologue, murine Kv3.1b, are both modulated by acid phosphatases. Thus, the C. elegans phosphatase ACP-2 is stably associated with KHT-1, while its mammalian homolog, prostatic acid phosphatase (PAP; also known as ACPP-201) stably associates with murine Kv3.1b K(+) channels in vitro and in vivo. In biochemical experiments both phosphatases were able to reverse phosphorylation of their associated channel. The effect of phosphorylation on both channels is to produce a decrease in current amplitude and electrophysiological analyses demonstrated that dephosphorylation reversed the effects of phosphorylation on the magnitude of the macroscopic currents. ACP-2 and KHT-1 were colocalized in the nervous system of C. elegans and, in the mouse nervous system, PAP and Kv3.1b were colocalized in subsets of neurons, including in the brain stem and the ventricular zone. Taken together, this body of evidence suggests that acid phosphatases are general regulatory partners of Shaw-like K(+) channels. PMID:23233530

  14. Nucleoplasmic Lamin A/C and Polycomb group of proteins: An evolutionarily conserved interplay.

    PubMed

    Marullo, F; Cesarini, E; Antonelli, L; Gregoretti, F; Oliva, G; Lanzuolo, C

    2016-04-25

    Nuclear lamins are the main components of the nuclear lamina at the nuclear periphery, providing mechanical support to the nucleus. However, recent findings suggest that lamins also reside in the nuclear interior, as a distinct and dynamic pool with critical roles in transcriptional regulation. In our work we found a functional and evolutionary conserved crosstalk between Lamin A/C and the Polycomb group (PcG) of proteins, this being required for the maintenance of the PcG repressive functions. Indeed, Lamin A/C knock-down causes PcG foci dispersion and defects in PcG-mediated higher order structures, thereby leading to impaired PcG mediated transcriptional repression. By using ad-hoc algorithms for image analysis and PLA approaches we hereby show that PcG proteins are preferentially located in the nuclear interior where they interact with nucleoplasmic Lamin A/C. Taken together, our findings suggest that nuclear components, such as Lamin A/C, functionally interact with epigenetic factors to ensure the correct transcriptional program maintenance. PMID:26930442

  15. An evolutionarily-conserved role for murine Ly-1 B cells in protection against bacterial infections.

    PubMed

    Lalor, P A

    1991-01-01

    The murine Ly-1 B cell lineage, although comprising only a minority of peripheral IgM+ B cells, secretes a major proportion of the IgM antibodies occurring naturally in serum. Ly-1 B cells also seed a large number of IgA+ plasma cells to the gut walls, thereby contributing significantly to production of natural IgA antibodies in response to chronic stimulation by the normal gut flora. Apart from these naturally-produced antibodies, Ly-1 B cells also produce specific antibodies following deliberate immunisation with the bacterial cell wall antigens, phosphorylcholine and dextran. The inability of the X-linked immunodeficient CBA/N mice to produce antibody responses to these two antigens is overcome by reconstitution with normal Ly-1 B cells from the parental CBA strain. Ly-1 B cells therefore appear to play a dominant role in natural immunity and protection against bacterial infections. The compartmentalisation of development and function within murine B cells is suggestive of an evolutionary structuring of the murine immune system, with Ly-1 B cells representing a conserved, primitive B cell lineage and retaining key, associated functions. PMID:1742426

  16. Drosophila KCNQ channel displays evolutionarily conserved electrophysiology and pharmacology with mammalian KCNQ channels.

    PubMed

    Cavaliere, Sonia; Hodge, James J L

    2011-01-01

    Of the five human KCNQ (Kv7) channels, KCNQ1 with auxiliary subunit KCNE1 mediates the native cardiac I(Ks) current with mutations causing short and long QT cardiac arrhythmias. KCNQ4 mutations cause deafness. KCNQ2/3 channels form the native M-current controlling excitability of most neurons, with mutations causing benign neonatal febrile convulsions. Drosophila contains a single KCNQ (dKCNQ) that appears to serve alone the functions of all the duplicated mammalian neuronal and cardiac KCNQ channels sharing roughly 50-60% amino acid identity therefore offering a route to investigate these channels. Current information about the functional properties of dKCNQ is lacking therefore we have investigated these properties here. Using whole cell patch clamp electrophysiology we compare the biophysical and pharmacological properties of dKCNQ with the mammalian neuronal and cardiac KCNQ channels expressed in HEK cells. We show that Drosophila KCNQ (dKCNQ) is a slowly activating and slowly-deactivating K(+) current open at sub-threshold potentials that has similar properties to neuronal KCNQ2/3 with some features of the cardiac KCNQ1/KCNE1 accompanied by conserved sensitivity to a number of clinically relevant KCNQ blockers (chromanol 293B, XE991, linopirdine) and opener (zinc pyrithione). We also investigate the molecular basis of the differential selectivity of KCNQ channels to the opener retigabine and show a single amino acid substitution (M217W) can confer sensitivity to dKCNQ. We show dKCNQ has similar electrophysiological and pharmacological properties as the mammalian KCNQ channels, allowing future study of physiological and pathological roles of KCNQ in Drosophila and whole organism screening for new modulators of KCNQ channelopathies. PMID:21915266

  17. An Evolutionarily Conserved Role for the Aryl Hydrocarbon Receptor in the Regulation of Movement

    PubMed Central

    Williams, Evan G.; Mouchiroud, Laurent; Frochaux, Michael; Pandey, Ashutosh; Andreux, Pénélope A.; Deplancke, Bart; Auwerx, Johan

    2014-01-01

    The BXD genetic reference population is a recombinant inbred panel descended from crosses between the C57BL/6 (B6) and DBA/2 (D2) strains of mice, which segregate for about 5 million sequence variants. Recently, some of these variants have been established with effects on general metabolic phenotypes such as glucose response and bone strength. Here we phenotype 43 BXD strains and observe they have large variation (∼5-fold) in their spontaneous activity during waking hours. QTL analyses indicate that ∼40% of this variance is attributable to a narrow locus containing the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (Ahr), a basic helix-loop-helix transcription factor with well-established roles in development and xenobiotic metabolism. Strains with the D2 allele of Ahr have reduced gene expression compared to those with the B6 allele, and have significantly higher spontaneous activity. This effect was also observed in B6 mice with a congenic D2 Ahr interval, and in B6 mice with a humanized AHR allele which, like the D2 allele, is expressed much less and has less enzymatic activity than the B6 allele. Ahr is highly conserved in invertebrates, and strikingly inhibition of its orthologs in D. melanogaster and C. elegans (spineless and ahr-1) leads to marked increases in basal activity. In mammals, Ahr has numerous ligands, but most are either non-selective (e.g. resveratrol) or highly toxic (e.g., 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD)). Thus, we chose to examine a major environmental influence—long term feeding with high fat diet (HFD)—to see if the effects of Ahr are dependent on major metabolic differences. Interestingly, while HFD robustly halved movement across all strains, the QTL position and effects of Ahr remained unchanged, indicating that the effects are independent. The highly consistent effects of Ahr on movement indicate that changes in its constitutive activity have a role on spontaneous movement and may influence human behavior. PMID:25255223

  18. An evolutionarily conserved role for the aryl hydrocarbon receptor in the regulation of movement.

    PubMed

    Williams, Evan G; Mouchiroud, Laurent; Frochaux, Michael; Pandey, Ashutosh; Andreux, Pénélope A; Deplancke, Bart; Auwerx, Johan

    2014-09-01

    The BXD genetic reference population is a recombinant inbred panel descended from crosses between the C57BL/6 (B6) and DBA/2 (D2) strains of mice, which segregate for about 5 million sequence variants. Recently, some of these variants have been established with effects on general metabolic phenotypes such as glucose response and bone strength. Here we phenotype 43 BXD strains and observe they have large variation (-5-fold) in their spontaneous activity during waking hours. QTL analyses indicate that -40% of this variance is attributable to a narrow locus containing the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (Ahr), a basic helix-loop-helix transcription factor with well-established roles in development and xenobiotic metabolism. Strains with the D2 allele of Ahr have reduced gene expression compared to those with the B6 allele, and have significantly higher spontaneous activity. This effect was also observed in B6 mice with a congenic D2 Ahr interval, and in B6 mice with a humanized AHR allele which, like the D2 allele, is expressed much less and has less enzymatic activity than the B6 allele. Ahr is highly conserved in invertebrates, and strikingly inhibition of its orthologs in D. melanogaster and C. elegans (spineless and ahr-1) leads to marked increases in basal activity. In mammals, Ahr has numerous ligands, but most are either non-selective (e.g. resveratrol) or highly toxic (e.g., 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD)). Thus, we chose to examine a major environmental influence--long term feeding with high fat diet (HFD)--to see if the effects of Ahr are dependent on major metabolic differences. Interestingly, while HFD robustly halved movement across all strains, the QTL position and effects of Ahr remained unchanged, indicating that the effects are independent. The highly consistent effects of Ahr on movement indicate that changes in its constitutive activity have a role on spontaneous movement and may influence human behavior. PMID:25255223

  19. Genome engineering uncovers 54 evolutionarily conserved and testis-enriched genes that are not required for male fertility in mice

    PubMed Central

    Miyata, Haruhiko; Castaneda, Julio M.; Fujihara, Yoshitaka; Yu, Zhifeng; Archambeault, Denise R.; Isotani, Ayako; Kiyozumi, Daiji; Kriseman, Maya L.; Mashiko, Daisuke; Matsumura, Takafumi; Matzuk, Ryan M.; Mori, Masashi; Noda, Taichi; Oji, Asami; Okabe, Masaru; Prunskaite-Hyyrylainen, Renata; Ramirez-Solis, Ramiro; Satouh, Yuhkoh; Zhang, Qian; Ikawa, Masahito; Matzuk, Martin M.

    2016-01-01

    Gene-expression analysis studies from Schultz et al. estimate that more than 2,300 genes in the mouse genome are expressed predominantly in the male germ line. As of their 2003 publication [Schultz N, Hamra FK, Garbers DL (2003) Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 100(21):12201–12206], the functions of the majority of these testis-enriched genes during spermatogenesis and fertilization were largely unknown. Since the study by Schultz et al., functional analysis of hundreds of reproductive-tract–enriched genes have been performed, but there remain many testis-enriched genes for which their relevance to reproduction remain unexplored or unreported. Historically, a gene knockout is the “gold standard” to determine whether a gene’s function is essential in vivo. Although knockout mice without apparent phenotypes are rarely published, these knockout mouse lines and their phenotypic information need to be shared to prevent redundant experiments. Herein, we used bioinformatic and experimental approaches to uncover mouse testis-enriched genes that are evolutionarily conserved in humans. We then used gene-disruption approaches, including Knockout Mouse Project resources (targeting vectors and mice) and CRISPR/Cas9, to mutate and quickly analyze the fertility of these mutant mice. We discovered that 54 mutant mouse lines were fertile. Thus, despite evolutionary conservation of these genes in vertebrates and in some cases in all eukaryotes, our results indicate that these genes are not individually essential for male mouse fertility. Our phenotypic data are highly relevant in this fiscally tight funding period and postgenomic age when large numbers of genomes are being analyzed for disease association, and will prevent unnecessary expenditures and duplications of effort by others. PMID:27357688

  20. Evolutionarily conserved morphogenetic movements at the vertebrate head–trunk interface coordinate the transport and assembly of hypopharyngeal structures

    PubMed Central

    Lours-Calet, Corinne; Alvares, Lucia E.; El-Hanfy, Amira S.; Gandesha, Saniel; Walters, Esther H.; Sobreira, Débora Rodrigues; Wotton, Karl R.; Jorge, Erika C.; Lawson, Jennifer A.; Kelsey Lewis, A.; Tada, Masazumi; Sharpe, Colin; Kardon, Gabrielle; Dietrich, Susanne

    2014-01-01

    The vertebrate head–trunk interface (occipital region) has been heavily remodelled during evolution, and its development is still poorly understood. In extant jawed vertebrates, this region provides muscle precursors for the throat and tongue (hypopharyngeal/hypobranchial/hypoglossal muscle precursors, HMP) that take a stereotype path rostrally along the pharynx and are thought to reach their target sites via active migration. Yet, this projection pattern emerged in jawless vertebrates before the evolution of migratory muscle precursors. This suggests that a so far elusive, more basic transport mechanism must have existed and may still be traceable today. Here we show for the first time that all occipital tissues participate in well-conserved cell movements. These cell movements are spearheaded by the occipital lateral mesoderm and ectoderm that split into two streams. The rostrally directed stream projects along the floor of the pharynx and reaches as far rostrally as the floor of the mandibular arch and outflow tract of the heart. Notably, this stream leads and engulfs the later emerging HMP, neural crest cells and hypoglossal nerve. When we (i) attempted to redirect hypobranchial/hypoglossal muscle precursors towards various attractants, (ii) placed non-migratory muscle precursors into the occipital environment or (iii) molecularly or (iv) genetically rendered muscle precursors non-migratory, they still followed the trajectory set by the occipital lateral mesoderm and ectoderm. Thus, we have discovered evolutionarily conserved morphogenetic movements, driven by the occipital lateral mesoderm and ectoderm, that ensure cell transport and organ assembly at the head–trunk interface. PMID:24662046

  1. Genome engineering uncovers 54 evolutionarily conserved and testis-enriched genes that are not required for male fertility in mice.

    PubMed

    Miyata, Haruhiko; Castaneda, Julio M; Fujihara, Yoshitaka; Yu, Zhifeng; Archambeault, Denise R; Isotani, Ayako; Kiyozumi, Daiji; Kriseman, Maya L; Mashiko, Daisuke; Matsumura, Takafumi; Matzuk, Ryan M; Mori, Masashi; Noda, Taichi; Oji, Asami; Okabe, Masaru; Prunskaite-Hyyrylainen, Renata; Ramirez-Solis, Ramiro; Satouh, Yuhkoh; Zhang, Qian; Ikawa, Masahito; Matzuk, Martin M

    2016-07-12

    Gene-expression analysis studies from Schultz et al. estimate that more than 2,300 genes in the mouse genome are expressed predominantly in the male germ line. As of their 2003 publication [Schultz N, Hamra FK, Garbers DL (2003) Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 100(21):12201-12206], the functions of the majority of these testis-enriched genes during spermatogenesis and fertilization were largely unknown. Since the study by Schultz et al., functional analysis of hundreds of reproductive-tract-enriched genes have been performed, but there remain many testis-enriched genes for which their relevance to reproduction remain unexplored or unreported. Historically, a gene knockout is the "gold standard" to determine whether a gene's function is essential in vivo. Although knockout mice without apparent phenotypes are rarely published, these knockout mouse lines and their phenotypic information need to be shared to prevent redundant experiments. Herein, we used bioinformatic and experimental approaches to uncover mouse testis-enriched genes that are evolutionarily conserved in humans. We then used gene-disruption approaches, including Knockout Mouse Project resources (targeting vectors and mice) and CRISPR/Cas9, to mutate and quickly analyze the fertility of these mutant mice. We discovered that 54 mutant mouse lines were fertile. Thus, despite evolutionary conservation of these genes in vertebrates and in some cases in all eukaryotes, our results indicate that these genes are not individually essential for male mouse fertility. Our phenotypic data are highly relevant in this fiscally tight funding period and postgenomic age when large numbers of genomes are being analyzed for disease association, and will prevent unnecessary expenditures and duplications of effort by others. PMID:27357688

  2. Evolutionarily conserved morphogenetic movements at the vertebrate head-trunk interface coordinate the transport and assembly of hypopharyngeal structures.

    PubMed

    Lours-Calet, Corinne; Alvares, Lucia E; El-Hanfy, Amira S; Gandesha, Saniel; Walters, Esther H; Sobreira, Débora Rodrigues; Wotton, Karl R; Jorge, Erika C; Lawson, Jennifer A; Kelsey Lewis, A; Tada, Masazumi; Sharpe, Colin; Kardon, Gabrielle; Dietrich, Susanne

    2014-06-15

    The vertebrate head-trunk interface (occipital region) has been heavily remodelled during evolution, and its development is still poorly understood. In extant jawed vertebrates, this region provides muscle precursors for the throat and tongue (hypopharyngeal/hypobranchial/hypoglossal muscle precursors, HMP) that take a stereotype path rostrally along the pharynx and are thought to reach their target sites via active migration. Yet, this projection pattern emerged in jawless vertebrates before the evolution of migratory muscle precursors. This suggests that a so far elusive, more basic transport mechanism must have existed and may still be traceable today. Here we show for the first time that all occipital tissues participate in well-conserved cell movements. These cell movements are spearheaded by the occipital lateral mesoderm and ectoderm that split into two streams. The rostrally directed stream projects along the floor of the pharynx and reaches as far rostrally as the floor of the mandibular arch and outflow tract of the heart. Notably, this stream leads and engulfs the later emerging HMP, neural crest cells and hypoglossal nerve. When we (i) attempted to redirect hypobranchial/hypoglossal muscle precursors towards various attractants, (ii) placed non-migratory muscle precursors into the occipital environment or (iii) molecularly or (iv) genetically rendered muscle precursors non-migratory, they still followed the trajectory set by the occipital lateral mesoderm and ectoderm. Thus, we have discovered evolutionarily conserved morphogenetic movements, driven by the occipital lateral mesoderm and ectoderm, that ensure cell transport and organ assembly at the head-trunk interface. PMID:24662046

  3. Structural Analyses of Short-Chain Prenyltransferases Identify an Evolutionarily Conserved GFPPS Clade in Brassicaceae Plants.

    PubMed

    Wang, Chengyuan; Chen, Qingwen; Fan, Dongjie; Li, Jianxu; Wang, Guodong; Zhang, Peng

    2016-02-01

    Terpenoids are the largest and most diverse class of plant-specialized metabolites, which function in diverse physiological processes during plant development. In the biosynthesis of plant terpenoids, short-chain prenyltransferases (SC-PTs), together with terpene synthases (TPSs), play critical roles in determining terpenoid diversity. SC-PTs biosynthesize prenyl pyrophosphates with different chain lengths, and these compounds are the direct precursors of terpenoids. Arabidopsis thaliana possesses a subgroup of SC-PTs whose functions are not clearly known. In this study, we focus on 10 geranylgeranyl pyrophosphate synthase-like [GGPPSL] proteins, which are commonly thought to produce GGPP [C20]. We found that a subset of members of the Arabidopsis GGPPSL gene family have undergone neo-functionalization: GGPPSL6, 7, 9, and 10 mainly have geranylfarnesyl pyrophosphate synthase activity (C25; renamed AtGFPPS1, 2, 3, and 4), and GGPPSL8 produces even longer chain prenyl pyrophosphate (≥ C30; renamed polyprenyl pyrophosphate synthase 2, AtPPPS2). By solving the crystal structures of AtGFPPS2, AtPPPS2, and AtGGPPS11, we reveal the product chain-length determination mechanism of SC-PTs and interpret it as a "three floors" model. Using this model, we identified a novel GFPPS clade distributed in Brassicaceae plants and found that the GFPPS gene typically occurs in tandem with a gene encoding a TPS, forming a GFPPS-TPS gene cluster. PMID:26537048

  4. Human H/ACA Small Nucleolar RNPs and Telomerase Share Evolutionarily Conserved Proteins NHP2 and NOP10

    PubMed Central

    Pogacic, Vanda; Dragon, François; Filipowicz, Witold

    2000-01-01

    The H/ACA small nucleolar RNAs (snoRNAs) are involved in pseudouridylation of pre-rRNAs. In the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, four common proteins are associated with H/ACA snoRNAs: Gar1p, Cbf5p, Nhp2p, and Nop10p. In vitro reconstitution studies showed that four proteins also specifically interact with H/ACA snoRNAs in mammalian cell extracts. Two mammalian proteins, NAP57/dyskerin (the ortholog of Cbf5p) and hGAR1, have been characterized. In this work we describe properties of hNOP10 and hNHP2, human orthologs of yeast Nop10p and Nhp2p, respectively, and further characterize hGAR1. hNOP10 and hNHP2 complement yeast cells depleted of Nhp2p and Nop10p, respectively. Immunoprecipitation experiments with extracts from transfected HeLa cells indicated that epitope-tagged hNOP10 and hNHP2 specifically associate with hGAR1 and H/ACA RNAs; they also interact with the RNA subunit of telomerase, which contains an H/ACA-like domain in its 3′ moiety. Immunofluorescence microscopy experiments showed that hGAR1, hNOP10, and hNHP2 are localized in the dense fibrillar component of the nucleolus and in Cajal (coiled) bodies. Deletion analysis of hGAR1 indicated that its evolutionarily conserved core domain contains all the signals required for localization, but progressive deletions from either the N or the C terminus of the core domain abolish localization in the nucleolus and/or the Cajal bodies. PMID:11074001

  5. MicroRNA expression during demosponge dissociation, reaggregation, and differentiation and a evolutionarily conserved demosponge miRNA expression profile.

    PubMed

    Robinson, Jeffrey M

    2015-11-01

    ), demonstrating and evolutionarily conserved miRNA expression profile across Demospongia. While these results do not elucidate specific molecular and cellular pathways, together they provide a broad survey of miRNA expression in demosponge systems. PMID:26553380

  6. Evolutionarily conserved multisubunit RBL2/p130 and E2F4 protein complex represses human cell cycle-dependent genes in quiescence.

    PubMed

    Litovchick, Larisa; Sadasivam, Subhashini; Florens, Laurence; Zhu, Xiaopeng; Swanson, Selene K; Velmurugan, Soundarapandian; Chen, Runsheng; Washburn, Michael P; Liu, X Shirley; DeCaprio, James A

    2007-05-25

    The mammalian Retinoblastoma (RB) family including pRB, p107, and p130 represses E2F target genes through mechanisms that are not fully understood. In D. melanogaster, RB-dependent repression is mediated in part by the multisubunit protein complex Drosophila RBF, E2F, and Myb (dREAM) that contains homologs of the C. elegans synthetic multivulva class B (synMuvB) gene products. Using an integrated approach combining proteomics, genomics, and bioinformatic analyses, we identified a p130 complex termed DP, RB-like, E2F, and MuvB (DREAM) that contains mammalian homologs of synMuvB proteins LIN-9, LIN-37, LIN-52, LIN-54, and LIN-53/RBBP4. DREAM bound to more than 800 human promoters in G0 and was required for repression of E2F target genes. In S phase, MuvB proteins dissociated from p130 and formed a distinct submodule that bound MYB. This work reveals an evolutionarily conserved multisubunit protein complex that contains p130 and E2F4, but not pRB, and mediates the repression of cell cycle-dependent genes in quiescence. PMID:17531812

  7. Identification of evolutionarily conserved Momordica charantia microRNAs using computational approach and its utility in phylogeny analysis.

    PubMed

    Thirugnanasambantham, Krishnaraj; Saravanan, Subramanian; Karikalan, Kulandaivelu; Bharanidharan, Rajaraman; Lalitha, Perumal; Ilango, S; HairulIslam, Villianur Ibrahim

    2015-10-01

    Momordica charantia (bitter gourd, bitter melon) is a monoecious Cucurbitaceae with anti-oxidant, anti-microbial, anti-viral and anti-diabetic potential. Molecular studies on this economically valuable plant are very essential to understand its phylogeny and evolution. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are conserved, small, non-coding RNA with ability to regulate gene expression by bind the 3' UTR region of target mRNA and are evolved at different rates in different plant species. In this study we have utilized homology based computational approach and identified 27 mature miRNAs for the first time from this bio-medically important plant. The phylogenetic tree developed from binary data derived from the data on presence/absence of the identified miRNAs were noticed to be uncertain and biased. Most of the identified miRNAs were highly conserved among the plant species and sequence based phylogeny analysis of miRNAs resolved the above difficulties in phylogeny approach using miRNA. Predicted gene targets of the identified miRNAs revealed their importance in regulation of plant developmental process. Reported miRNAs held sequence conservation in mature miRNAs and the detailed phylogeny analysis of pre-miRNA sequences revealed genus specific segregation of clusters. PMID:25988220

  8. IAA-Ala Resistant3, an evolutionarily conserved target of miR167, mediates Arabidopsis root architecture changes during high osmotic stress.

    PubMed

    Kinoshita, Natsuko; Wang, Huan; Kasahara, Hiroyuki; Liu, Jun; Macpherson, Cameron; Machida, Yasunori; Kamiya, Yuji; Hannah, Matthew A; Chua, Nam-Hai

    2012-09-01

    The functions of microRNAs and their target mRNAs in Arabidopsis thaliana development have been widely documented; however, roles of stress-responsive microRNAs and their targets are not as well understood. Using small RNA deep sequencing and ATH1 microarrays to profile mRNAs, we identified IAA-Ala Resistant3 (IAR3) as a new target of miR167a. As expected, IAR3 mRNA was cleaved at the miR167a complementary site and under high osmotic stress miR167a levels decreased, whereas IAR3 mRNA levels increased. IAR3 hydrolyzes an inactive form of auxin (indole-3-acetic acid [IAA]-alanine) and releases bioactive auxin (IAA), a central phytohormone for root development. In contrast with the wild type, iar3 mutants accumulated reduced IAA levels and did not display high osmotic stress-induced root architecture changes. Transgenic plants expressing a cleavage-resistant form of IAR3 mRNA accumulated high levels of IAR3 mRNAs and showed increased lateral root development compared with transgenic plants expressing wild-type IAR3. Expression of an inducible noncoding RNA to sequester miR167a by target mimicry led to an increase in IAR3 mRNA levels, further confirming the inverse relationship between the two partners. Sequence comparison revealed the miR167 target site on IAR3 mRNA is conserved in evolutionarily distant plant species. Finally, we showed that IAR3 is required for drought tolerance. PMID:22960911

  9. Hepatitis B virus X protein increases the IL-1β-induced NF-κB activation via interaction with evolutionarily conserved signaling intermediate in Toll pathways (ECSIT).

    PubMed

    Chen, Wan-nan; Liu, Ling-ling; Jiao, Bo-yan; Lin, Wan-song; Lin, Xin-jian; Lin, Xu

    2015-01-01

    Hepatitis B virus X protein (HBx) transactivates multiple transcription factors including nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-κB) that regulates inflammatory-related genes. However, the regulatory mechanism of HBx in NF-κB activation remains largely unknown. This study reports that HBx augments the interleukin-1β (IL-1β)-induced NF-κB activation via interaction with a Toll-like receptor (TLR) adapter protein, ECSIT (evolutionarily conserved signaling intermediate in Toll pathways). GST pull-down and co-immunoprecipitation analyses showed that HBx interacted with ECSIT. Deletion analysis of HBx in a CytoTrap two-hybrid system revealed that the interaction region of HBx for ECSIT was attributed to aa 51-80. Co-transfection of HBx and ECSIT in IL-1β-stimulated cells appeared to activate IKK and IκB signaling pathway as phosphorylation of both IKK α/β and IκBα was increased whereas knockdown of ECSIT or HBxΔ51-80 mutant attenuated the phosphorylation. As a consequence of IκBα degradation, NF-κB was activated as evidenced by increases in NF-κB transcriptional activity and the nuclear translocation of p65 and p50 that resulted in the induction of IL-10. In contrast, knockdown of ECSIT by siRNA or treatment with an NF-κB selective inhibitor (helenalin) abolished the NF-κB activation and IL-10 expression. We conclude that ECSIT appears to be a novel HBx-interacting signal molecule and their interaction is mechanistically important in IL-1β induction of NF-κB activation. PMID:25449573

  10. Drosophila Ncd reveals an evolutionarily conserved powerstroke mechanism for homodimeric and heterodimeric kinesin-14s.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Pengwei; Dai, Wei; Hahn, Juergen; Gilbert, Susan P

    2015-05-19

    Drosophila melanogaster kinesin-14 Ncd cross-links parallel microtubules at the spindle poles and antiparallel microtubules within the spindle midzone to play roles in bipolar spindle assembly and proper chromosome distribution. As observed for Saccharomyces cerevisiae kinesin-14 Kar3Vik1 and Kar3Cik1, Ncd binds adjacent microtubule protofilaments in a novel microtubule binding configuration and uses an ATP-promoted powerstroke mechanism. The hypothesis tested here is that Kar3Vik1 and Kar3Cik1, as well as Ncd, use a common ATPase mechanism for force generation even though the microtubule interactions for both Ncd heads are modulated by nucleotide state. The presteady-state kinetics and computational modeling establish an ATPase mechanism for a powerstroke model of Ncd that is very similar to those determined for Kar3Vik1 and Kar3Cik1, although these heterodimers have one Kar3 catalytic motor domain and a Vik1/Cik1 partner motor homology domain whose interactions with microtubules are not modulated by nucleotide state but by strain. The results indicate that both Ncd motor heads bind the microtubule lattice; two ATP binding and hydrolysis events are required for each powerstroke; and a slow step occurs after microtubule collision and before the ATP-promoted powerstroke. Note that unlike conventional myosin-II or other processive molecular motors, Ncd requires two ATP turnovers rather than one for a single powerstroke-driven displacement or step. These results are significant because all metazoan kinesin-14s are homodimers, and the results presented show that despite their structural and functional differences, the heterodimeric and homodimeric kinesin-14s share a common evolutionary structural and mechanochemical mechanism for force generation. PMID:25941402

  11. Molecular phylogeny and biogeography of the weevil subfamily Platypodinae reveals evolutionarily conserved range patterns.

    PubMed

    Jordal, Bjarte H

    2015-11-01

    Platypodinae is a peculiar weevil subfamily of species that cultivate fungi in tunnels excavated in dead wood. Their geographical distribution is generally restricted, with genera confined to a single continent or large island, which provides a useful system for biogeographical research. This study establishes the first detailed molecular phylogeny of the group, with the aim of testing hypotheses on classification, diversification, and biogeography. A phylogeny was reconstructed based on 3648 nucleotides from COI, EF-1α, CAD, ArgK, and 28S. Tree topology was well resolved and indicated a strong correlation with geography, more so than predicted by previous morphology-based classifications. Tesserocerini was paraphyletic, with Notoplatypus as the sister group to a clade consisting of three main lineages of Tesserocerini and the recently evolved Platypodini. Austroplatypus formed the sister group to all remaining Platypodini and hence confirmed its separate status from Platypus. The Indo-Australian genera of Platypodini were strikingly paraphyletic, suggesting that the taxonomy of this tribe needs careful revision. Ancestral-area reconstructions in Lagrange and S-DIVA were ambiguous for nodes roughly older than 80 Ma. More recent events were firmly assessed and involved post-Gondwanan long-distance dispersal. The Neotropics was colonized three times, all from the Afrotropical region, with the latest event less than 25 Ma that included the ancestor of all Neotropical Platypodini. PMID:26190520

  12. Large-scale nucleotide sequence alignment and sequence variability assessment to identify the evolutionarily highly conserved regions for universal screening PCR assay design: an example of influenza A virus.

    PubMed

    Nagy, Alexander; Jiřinec, Tomáš; Černíková, Lenka; Jiřincová, Helena; Havlíčková, Martina

    2015-01-01

    The development of a diagnostic polymerase chain reaction (PCR) or quantitative PCR (qPCR) assay for universal detection of highly variable viral genomes is always a difficult task. The purpose of this chapter is to provide a guideline on how to align, process, and evaluate a huge set of homologous nucleotide sequences in order to reveal the evolutionarily most conserved positions suitable for universal qPCR primer and hybridization probe design. Attention is paid to the quantification and clear graphical visualization of the sequence variability at each position of the alignment. In addition, specific problems related to the processing of the extremely large sequence pool are highlighted. All of these steps are performed using an ordinary desktop computer without the need for extensive mathematical or computational skills. PMID:25697651

  13. An Evolutionarily Conserved Domain of roX2 RNA Is Sufficient for Induction of H4-Lys16 Acetylation on the Drosophila X Chromosome

    PubMed Central

    Park, Seung-Won; Kang, Yool Ie; Sypula, Joanna G.; Choi, Jiyeon; Oh, Hyangyee; Park, Yongkyu

    2007-01-01

    The male-specific lethal (MSL) complex, which includes two noncoding RNA on X (roX)1 and roX2 RNAs, induces histone H4-Lys16 acetylation for twofold hypertranscription of the male X chromosome in Drosophila melanogaster. To characterize the role of roX RNAs in this process, we have identified evolutionarily conserved functional domains of roX RNAs in several Drosophila species (eight for roX1 and nine for roX2). Despite low homology between them, male-specific expression and X chromosome-specific binding are conserved. Within roX RNAs of all Drosophila species, we found conserved primary sequences, such as GUUNUACG, in the 3′ end of both roX1 (three repeats) and roX2 (two repeats). A predicted stem–loop structure of roX2 RNA contains this sequence in the 3′ stem region. Six tandem repeats of this stem–loop region (72 nt) of roX2 were enough for targeting the MSL complex and inducing H4-Lys16 acetylation on the X chromosome without other parts of roX2 RNA, suggesting that roX RNAs might play important roles in regulating enzymatic activity of the MSL complex. PMID:18039876

  14. The Evolutionarily Conserved LIM Homeodomain Protein LIM-4/LHX6 Specifies the Terminal Identity of a Cholinergic and Peptidergic C. elegans Sensory/Inter/Motor Neuron-Type

    PubMed Central

    Choi, Seong-Kyoon; Huh, Yang Hoon; Fang, Zi; Park, Seo Jin; Kim, Myoung Ok; Ryoo, Zae Young; Kang, Kyeongjin; Kweon, Hee-Seok; Jeon, Won Bae; Li, Chris; Kim, Kyuhyung

    2015-01-01

    The expression of specific transcription factors determines the differentiated features of postmitotic neurons. However, the mechanism by which specific molecules determine neuronal cell fate and the extent to which the functions of transcription factors are conserved in evolution are not fully understood. In C. elegans, the cholinergic and peptidergic SMB sensory/inter/motor neurons innervate muscle quadrants in the head and control the amplitude of sinusoidal movement. Here we show that the LIM homeobox protein LIM-4 determines neuronal characteristics of the SMB neurons. In lim-4 mutant animals, expression of terminal differentiation genes, such as the cholinergic gene battery and the flp-12 neuropeptide gene, is completely abolished and thus the function of the SMB neurons is compromised. LIM-4 activity promotes SMB identity by directly regulating the expression of the SMB marker genes via a distinct cis-regulatory motif. Two human LIM-4 orthologs, LHX6 and LHX8, functionally substitute for LIM-4 in C. elegans. Furthermore, C. elegans LIM-4 or human LHX6 can induce cholinergic and peptidergic characteristics in the human neuronal cell lines. Our results indicate that the evolutionarily conserved LIM-4/LHX6 homeodomain proteins function in generation of precise neuronal subtypes. PMID:26305787

  15. An evolutionarily conserved mechanism for cAMP elicited axonal regeneration involves direct activation of the dual leucine zipper kinase DLK

    PubMed Central

    Hao, Yan; Frey, Erin; Yoon, Choya; Wong, Hetty; Nestorovski, Douglas; Holzman, Lawrence B; Giger, Roman J; DiAntonio, Aaron; Collins, Catherine

    2016-01-01

    A broadly known method to stimulate the growth potential of axons is to elevate intracellular levels of cAMP, however the cellular pathway(s) that mediate this are not known. Here we identify the Dual Leucine-zipper Kinase (DLK, Wnd in Drosophila) as a critical target and effector of cAMP in injured axons. DLK/Wnd is thought to function as an injury ‘sensor’, as it becomes activated after axonal damage. Our findings in both Drosophila and mammalian neurons indicate that the cAMP effector kinase PKA is a conserved and direct upstream activator of Wnd/DLK. PKA is required for the induction of Wnd signaling in injured axons, and DLK is essential for the regenerative effects of cAMP in mammalian DRG neurons. These findings link two important mediators of responses to axonal injury, DLK/Wnd and cAMP/PKA, into a unified and evolutionarily conserved molecular pathway for stimulating the regenerative potential of injured axons. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.14048.001 PMID:27268300

  16. An evolutionarily conserved mechanism for cAMP elicited axonal regeneration involves direct activation of the dual leucine zipper kinase DLK.

    PubMed

    Hao, Yan; Frey, Erin; Yoon, Choya; Wong, Hetty; Nestorovski, Douglas; Holzman, Lawrence B; Giger, Roman J; DiAntonio, Aaron; Collins, Catherine

    2016-01-01

    A broadly known method to stimulate the growth potential of axons is to elevate intracellular levels of cAMP, however the cellular pathway(s) that mediate this are not known. Here we identify the Dual Leucine-zipper Kinase (DLK, Wnd in Drosophila) as a critical target and effector of cAMP in injured axons. DLK/Wnd is thought to function as an injury 'sensor', as it becomes activated after axonal damage. Our findings in both Drosophila and mammalian neurons indicate that the cAMP effector kinase PKA is a conserved and direct upstream activator of Wnd/DLK. PKA is required for the induction of Wnd signaling in injured axons, and DLK is essential for the regenerative effects of cAMP in mammalian DRG neurons. These findings link two important mediators of responses to axonal injury, DLK/Wnd and cAMP/PKA, into a unified and evolutionarily conserved molecular pathway for stimulating the regenerative potential of injured axons. PMID:27268300

  17. Interaction of MYC with host cell factor-1 is mediated by the evolutionarily conserved Myc box IV motif.

    PubMed

    Thomas, L R; Foshage, A M; Weissmiller, A M; Popay, T M; Grieb, B C; Qualls, S J; Ng, V; Carboneau, B; Lorey, S; Eischen, C M; Tansey, W P

    2016-07-01

    The MYC family of oncogenes encodes a set of three related transcription factors that are overexpressed in many human tumors and contribute to the cancer-related deaths of more than 70,000 Americans every year. MYC proteins drive tumorigenesis by interacting with co-factors that enable them to regulate the expression of thousands of genes linked to cell growth, proliferation, metabolism and genome stability. One effective way to identify critical co-factors required for MYC function has been to focus on sequence motifs within MYC that are conserved throughout evolution, on the assumption that their conservation is driven by protein-protein interactions that are vital for MYC activity. In addition to their DNA-binding domains, MYC proteins carry five regions of high sequence conservation known as Myc boxes (Mb). To date, four of the Mb motifs (MbI, MbII, MbIIIa and MbIIIb) have had a molecular function assigned to them, but the precise role of the remaining Mb, MbIV, and the reason for its preservation in vertebrate Myc proteins, is unknown. Here, we show that MbIV is required for the association of MYC with the abundant transcriptional coregulator host cell factor-1 (HCF-1). We show that the invariant core of MbIV resembles the tetrapeptide HCF-binding motif (HBM) found in many HCF-interaction partners, and demonstrate that MYC interacts with HCF-1 in a manner indistinguishable from the prototypical HBM-containing protein VP16. Finally, we show that rationalized point mutations in MYC that disrupt interaction with HCF-1 attenuate the ability of MYC to drive tumorigenesis in mice. Together, these data expose a molecular function for MbIV and indicate that HCF-1 is an important co-factor for MYC. PMID:26522729

  18. The role of evolutionarily conserved germ-line DH sequence in B-1 cell development and natural antibody production.

    PubMed

    Vale, Andre M; Nobrega, Alberto; Schroeder, Harry W

    2015-12-01

    Because of N addition and variation in the site of VDJ joining, the third complementarity-determining region of the heavy chain (CDR-H3) is the most diverse component of the initial immunoglobulin antigen-binding site repertoire. A large component of the peritoneal cavity B-1 cell component is the product of fetal and perinatal B cell production. The CDR-H3 repertoire is thus depleted of N addition, which increases dependency on germ-line sequence. Cross-species comparisons have shown that DH gene sequence demonstrates conservation of amino acid preferences by reading frame. Preference for reading frame 1, which is enriched for tyrosine and glycine, is created both by rearrangement patterns and by pre-BCR and BCR selection. In previous studies, we have assessed the role of conserved DH sequence by examining peritoneal cavity B-1 cell numbers and antibody production in BALB/c mice with altered DH loci. Here, we review our finding that changes in the constraints normally imposed by germ-line-encoded amino acids within the CDR-H3 repertoire profoundly affect B-1 cell development, especially B-1a cells, and thus natural antibody immunity. Our studies suggest that both natural and somatic selection operate to create a restricted B-1 cell CDR-H3 repertoire. PMID:26104486

  19. The Evolutionarily Conserved Mediator Subunit MDT-15/MED15 Links Protective Innate Immune Responses and Xenobiotic Detoxification

    PubMed Central

    McEwan, Deborah L.; Conery, Annie L.; Ausubel, Frederick M.

    2014-01-01

    Metazoans protect themselves from environmental toxins and virulent pathogens through detoxification and immune responses. We previously identified a small molecule xenobiotic toxin that extends survival of Caenorhabditis elegans infected with human bacterial pathogens by activating the conserved p38 MAP kinase PMK-1 host defense pathway. Here we investigate the cellular mechanisms that couple activation of a detoxification response to innate immunity. From an RNAi screen of 1,420 genes expressed in the C. elegans intestine, we identified the conserved Mediator subunit MDT-15/MED15 and 28 other gene inactivations that abrogate the induction of PMK-1-dependent immune effectors by this small molecule. We demonstrate that MDT-15/MED15 is required for the xenobiotic-induced expression of p38 MAP kinase PMK-1-dependent immune genes and protection from Pseudomonas aeruginosa infection. We also show that MDT-15 controls the induction of detoxification genes and functions to protect the host from bacteria-derived phenazine toxins. These data define a central role for MDT-15/MED15 in the coordination of xenobiotic detoxification and innate immune responses. PMID:24875643

  20. Production of Bioactive Diterpenoids in the Euphorbiaceae Depends on Evolutionarily Conserved Gene Clusters[C][W][OPEN

    PubMed Central

    King, Andrew J.; Brown, Geoffrey D.; Gilday, Alison D.; Larson, Tony R.; Graham, Ian A.

    2014-01-01

    The Euphorbiaceae produce a diverse range of diterpenoids, many of which have pharmacological activities. These diterpenoids include ingenol mebutate, which is licensed for the treatment of a precancerous skin condition (actinic keratosis), and phorbol derivatives such as resiniferatoxin and prostratin, which are undergoing investigation for the treatment of severe pain and HIV, respectively. Despite the interest in these diterpenoids, their biosynthesis is poorly understood at present, with the only characterized step being the conversion of geranylgeranyl pyrophosphate into casbene. Here, we report a physical cluster of diterpenoid biosynthetic genes from castor (Ricinus communis), including casbene synthases and cytochrome P450s from the CYP726A subfamily. CYP726A14, CYP726A17, and CYP726A18 were able to catalyze 5-oxidation of casbene, a conserved oxidation step in the biosynthesis of this family of medicinally important diterpenoids. CYP726A16 catalyzed 7,8-epoxidation of 5-keto-casbene and CYP726A15 catalyzed 5-oxidation of neocembrene. Evidence of similar gene clustering was also found in two other Euphorbiaceae, including Euphorbia peplus, the source organism of ingenol mebutate. These results demonstrate conservation of gene clusters at the higher taxonomic level of the plant family and that this phenomenon could prove useful in further elucidating diterpenoid biosynthetic pathways. PMID:25172144

  1. Characterization of the Six Zebrafish Clade B Fibrillar Procollagen Genes, with Evidence for Evolutionarily Conserved Alternative Splicing within the pro-α1(V) C-propeptide

    PubMed Central

    Hoffman, Guy G.; Branam, Amanda M.; Huang, Guorui; Pelegri, Francisco; Cole, William G.; Wenstrup, Richard M.; Greenspan, Daniel S.

    2010-01-01

    Genes for tetrapod fibrillar procollagen chains can be divided into two clades, A and B, based on sequence homologies and differences in protein domain and gene structures. Although the major fibrillar collagen types I–III comprise only clade A chains, the minor fibrillar collagen types V and XI comprise both clade A chains and the clade B chains pro-α1(V), pro-α3(V), pro-α1(XI) and pro-α2(XI), in which defects can underlie various genetic connective tissue disorders. Here we characterize the clade B procollagen chains of zebrafish. We demonstrate that in contrast to the four tetrapod clade B chains, zebrafish have six clade B chains, designated here as pro-α1(V), proα3(V)a and b, pro-α1(XI)a and b, and pro-α2(XI), based on synteny, sequence homologies, and features of protein domain and gene structures. Spatiotemporal expression patterns are described, as are conserved and non-conserved features that provide insights into the function and evolution of the clade B chain types. Such features include differential alternative splicing of NH2-terminal globular sequences and the first case of a non-triple helical imperfection in the COL1 domain of a clade B, or clade A, fibrillar procollagen chain. Evidence is also provided for previously unknown and evolutionarily conserved alternative splicing within the pro-α1(V) C-propeptide, which may affect selectivity of collagen type V/XI chain associations in species ranging from zebrafish to human. Data presented herein provide insights into the nature of clade B procollagen chains and should facilitate their study in the zebrafish model system. PMID:20102740

  2. Identification and Validation of Evolutionarily Conserved Unusually Short Pre-mRNA Introns in the Human Genome

    PubMed Central

    Shimada, Makoto K.; Sasaki-Haraguchi, Noriko; Mayeda, Akila

    2015-01-01

    According to the length distribution of human introns, there is a large population of short introns with a threshold of 65 nucleotides (nt) and a peak at 85 nt. Using human genome and transcriptome databases, we investigated the introns shorter than 66 nt, termed ultra-short introns, the identities of which are scarcely known. Here, we provide for the first time a list of bona fide human ultra-short introns, which have never been characterized elsewhere. By conducting BLAST searches of the databases, we screened 22 introns (37–65 nt) with conserved lengths and sequences among closely related species. We then provide experimental and bioinformatic evidence for the splicing of 15 introns, of which 12 introns were remarkably G-rich and 9 introns contained completely inefficient splice sites and/or branch sites. These unorthodox characteristics of ultra-short introns suggest that there are unknown splicing mechanisms that differ from the well-established mechanism. PMID:25961948

  3. Identification and Validation of Evolutionarily Conserved Unusually Short Pre-mRNA Introns in the Human Genome.

    PubMed

    Shimada, Makoto K; Sasaki-Haraguchi, Noriko; Mayeda, Akila

    2015-01-01

    According to the length distribution of human introns, there is a large population of short introns with a threshold of 65 nucleotides (nt) and a peak at 85 nt. Using human genome and transcriptome databases, we investigated the introns shorter than 66 nt, termed ultra-short introns, the identities of which are scarcely known. Here, we provide for the first time a list of bona fide human ultra-short introns, which have never been characterized elsewhere. By conducting BLAST searches of the databases, we screened 22 introns (37-65 nt) with conserved lengths and sequences among closely related species. We then provide experimental and bioinformatic evidence for the splicing of 15 introns, of which 12 introns were remarkably G-rich and 9 introns contained completely inefficient splice sites and/or branch sites. These unorthodox characteristics of ultra-short introns suggest that there are unknown splicing mechanisms that differ from the well-established mechanism. PMID:25961948

  4. Evolutionarily conserved paired immunoglobulin-like receptor α (PILRα) domain mediates its interaction with diverse sialylated ligands.

    PubMed

    Sun, Yonglian; Senger, Kate; Baginski, Tomasz K; Mazloom, Anita; Chinn, Yvonne; Pantua, Homer; Hamidzadeh, Kajal; Ramani, Sree Ranjani; Luis, Elizabeth; Tom, Irene; Sebrell, Andrew; Quinones, Gabriel; Ma, Yan; Mukhyala, Kiran; Sai, Tao; Ding, Jiabing; Haley, Benjamin; Shadnia, Hooman; Kapadia, Sharookh B; Gonzalez, Lino C; Hass, Philip E; Zarrin, Ali A

    2012-05-01

    Paired immunoglobulin-like receptor (PILR) α is an inhibitory receptor that recognizes several ligands, including mouse CD99, PILR-associating neural protein, and Herpes simplex virus-1 glycoprotein B. The physiological function(s) of interactions between PILRα and its cellular ligands are not well understood, as are the molecular determinants of PILRα/ligand interactions. To address these uncertainties, we sought to identify additional PILRα ligands and further define the molecular basis for PILRα/ligand interactions. Here, we identify two novel PILRα binding partners, neuronal differentiation and proliferation factor-1 (NPDC1), and collectin-12 (COLEC12). We find that sialylated O-glycans on these novel PILRα ligands, and on known PILRα ligands, are compulsory for PILRα binding. Sialylation-dependent ligand recognition is also a property of SIGLEC1, a member of the sialic acid-binding Ig-like lectins. SIGLEC1 Ig domain shares ∼22% sequence identity with PILRα, an identity that includes a conserved arginine localized to position 97 in mouse and human SIGLEC1, position 133 in mouse PILRα and position 126 in human PILRα. We observe that PILRα/ligand interactions require conserved PILRα Arg-133 (mouse) and Arg-126 (human), in correspondence with a previously reported requirement for SIGLEC1 Arg-197 in SIGLEC1/ligand interactions. Homology modeling identifies striking similarities between PILRα and SIGLEC1 ligand binding pockets as well as at least one set of distinctive interactions in the galactoxyl-binding site. Binding studies suggest that PILRα recognizes a complex ligand domain involving both sialic acid and protein motif(s). Thus, PILRα is evolved to engage multiple ligands with common molecular determinants to modulate myeloid cell functions in anatomical settings where PILRα ligands are expressed. PMID:22396535

  5. Evolutionarily Conserved Paired Immunoglobulin-like Receptor α (PILRα) Domain Mediates Its Interaction with Diverse Sialylated Ligands

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Yonglian; Senger, Kate; Baginski, Tomasz K.; Mazloom, Anita; Chinn, Yvonne; Pantua, Homer; Hamidzadeh, Kajal; Ramani, Sree Ranjani; Luis, Elizabeth; Tom, Irene; Sebrell, Andrew; Quinones, Gabriel; Ma, Yan; Mukhyala, Kiran; Sai, Tao; Ding, Jiabing; Haley, Benjamin; Shadnia, Hooman; Kapadia, Sharookh B.; Gonzalez, Lino C.; Hass, Philip E.; Zarrin, Ali A.

    2012-01-01

    Paired immunoglobulin-like receptor (PILR) α is an inhibitory receptor that recognizes several ligands, including mouse CD99, PILR-associating neural protein, and Herpes simplex virus-1 glycoprotein B. The physiological function(s) of interactions between PILRα and its cellular ligands are not well understood, as are the molecular determinants of PILRα/ligand interactions. To address these uncertainties, we sought to identify additional PILRα ligands and further define the molecular basis for PILRα/ligand interactions. Here, we identify two novel PILRα binding partners, neuronal differentiation and proliferation factor-1 (NPDC1), and collectin-12 (COLEC12). We find that sialylated O-glycans on these novel PILRα ligands, and on known PILRα ligands, are compulsory for PILRα binding. Sialylation-dependent ligand recognition is also a property of SIGLEC1, a member of the sialic acid-binding Ig-like lectins. SIGLEC1 Ig domain shares ∼22% sequence identity with PILRα, an identity that includes a conserved arginine localized to position 97 in mouse and human SIGLEC1, position 133 in mouse PILRα and position 126 in human PILRα. We observe that PILRα/ligand interactions require conserved PILRα Arg-133 (mouse) and Arg-126 (human), in correspondence with a previously reported requirement for SIGLEC1 Arg-197 in SIGLEC1/ligand interactions. Homology modeling identifies striking similarities between PILRα and SIGLEC1 ligand binding pockets as well as at least one set of distinctive interactions in the galactoxyl-binding site. Binding studies suggest that PILRα recognizes a complex ligand domain involving both sialic acid and protein motif(s). Thus, PILRα is evolved to engage multiple ligands with common molecular determinants to modulate myeloid cell functions in anatomical settings where PILRα ligands are expressed. PMID:22396535

  6. The M1 family of vertebrate aminopeptidases: role of evolutionarily conserved tyrosines in the enzymatic mechanism of aminopeptidase B.

    PubMed

    Cadel, Sandrine; Darmon, Cécile; Pernier, Julien; Hervé, Guy; Foulon, Thierry

    2015-02-01

    Aminopeptidase B (Ap-B), a member of the M1 family of Zn(2+)-aminopeptidases, removes basic residues at the NH2-terminus of peptides and is involved in the in vivo proteolytic processing of miniglucagon and cholecystokinin-8. M1 enzymes hydrolyze numerous different peptides and are implicated in many physiological functions. As these enzymes have similar catalytic mechanisms, their respective substrate specificity and/or catalytic efficiency must be based on subtle structural differences at or near the catalytic site. This leads to the hypothesis that each primary structure contains a consensus structural template, strictly necessary for aminopeptidase activity, and a specific amino acid environment localized in or outside the catalytic pocket that finely tunes the substrate specificity and catalytic efficiency of each enzyme. A multiple sequence alignment of M1 peptidases from vertebrates allowed to identify conserved tyrosine amino acids, which are members of this catalytic backbone. In the present work, site-directed mutagenesis and 3D molecular modeling of Ap-B were used to specify the role of four fully (Y281, Y229, Y414, and Y441) and one partially (Y409) conserved residues. Tyrosine to phenylalanine mutations allowed confirming the influence of the hydroxyl groups on the enzyme activity. These groups are implicated in the reaction mechanism (Y414), in substrate specificity and/or catalytic efficiency (Y409), in stabilization of essential amino acids of the active site (Y229, Y409) and potentially in the maintenance of its structural integrity (Y281, Y441). The importance of hydrogen bonds is verified by the Y229H substitution, which preserves the enzyme activity. These data provide new insights into the catalytic mechanism of Ap-B in the M1 family of aminopeptidases. PMID:25530263

  7. Characterisation of the Trichinella spiralis Deubiquitinating Enzyme, TsUCH37, an Evolutionarily Conserved Proteasome Interaction Partner

    PubMed Central

    White, Rhiannon R.; Miyata, Sachiko; Papa, Eliseo; Spooner, Eric; Gounaris, Kleoniki; Selkirk, Murray E.; Artavanis-Tsakonas, Katerina

    2011-01-01

    Background Trichinella spiralis is a zoonotic parasitic nematode that causes trichinellosis, a disease that has been identified on all continents except Antarctica. During chronic infection, T. spiralis larvae infect skeletal myofibres, severely disrupting their differentiation state. Methodology and Results An activity-based probe, HA-Ub-VME, was used to identify deubiquitinating enzyme (DUB) activity in lysate of T. spiralis L1 larvae. Results were analysed by immuno-blot and immuno-precipitation, identifying a number of potential DUBs. Immuno-precipitated proteins were subjected to LC/MS/MS, yielding peptides with sequence homology to 5 conserved human DUBs: UCH-L5, UCH-L3, HAUSP, OTU 6B and Ataxin-3. The predicted gene encoding the putative UCH-L5 homologue, TsUCH37, was cloned and recombinant protein was expressed and purified. The deubiquitinating activity of this enzyme was verified by Ub-AMC assay. Co-precipitation of recombinant TsUCH37 showed that the protein associates with putative T. spiralis proteasome components, including the yeast Rpn13 homologue ADRM1. In addition, the UCH inhibitor LDN-57444 exhibited specific inhibition of recombinant TsUCH37 and reduced the viability of cultured L1 larvae. Conclusions This study reports the identification of the first T. spiralis DUB, a cysteine protease that is putatively orthologous to the human protein, hUCH-L5. Results suggest that the interaction of this protein with the proteasome has been conserved throughout evolution. We show potential for the use of inhibitor compounds to elucidate the role of UCH enzymes in T. spiralis infection and their investigation as therapeutic targets for trichinellosis. PMID:22013496

  8. MINDY-1 Is a Member of an Evolutionarily Conserved and Structurally Distinct New Family of Deubiquitinating Enzymes.

    PubMed

    Abdul Rehman, Syed Arif; Kristariyanto, Yosua Adi; Choi, Soo-Youn; Nkosi, Pedro Junior; Weidlich, Simone; Labib, Karim; Hofmann, Kay; Kulathu, Yogesh

    2016-07-01

    Deubiquitinating enzymes (DUBs) remove ubiquitin (Ub) from Ub-conjugated substrates to regulate the functional outcome of ubiquitylation. Here we report the discovery of a new family of DUBs, which we have named MINDY (motif interacting with Ub-containing novel DUB family). Found in all eukaryotes, MINDY-family DUBs are highly selective at cleaving K48-linked polyUb, a signal that targets proteins for degradation. We identify the catalytic activity to be encoded within a previously unannotated domain, the crystal structure of which reveals a distinct protein fold with no homology to any of the known DUBs. The crystal structure of MINDY-1 (also known as FAM63A) in complex with propargylated Ub reveals conformational changes that realign the active site for catalysis. MINDY-1 prefers cleaving long polyUb chains and works by trimming chains from the distal end. Collectively, our results reveal a new family of DUBs that may have specialized roles in regulating proteostasis. PMID:27292798

  9. Role of Nrf2/HO-1 system in development, oxidative stress response and diseases: an evolutionarily conserved mechanism.

    PubMed

    Loboda, Agnieszka; Damulewicz, Milena; Pyza, Elzbieta; Jozkowicz, Alicja; Dulak, Jozef

    2016-09-01

    The multifunctional regulator nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor (Nrf2) is considered not only as a cytoprotective factor regulating the expression of genes coding for anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory and detoxifying proteins, but it is also a powerful modulator of species longevity. The vertebrate Nrf2 belongs to Cap 'n' Collar (Cnc) bZIP family of transcription factors and shares a high homology with SKN-1 from Caenorhabditis elegans or CncC found in Drosophila melanogaster. The major characteristics of Nrf2 are to some extent mimicked by Nrf2-dependent genes and their proteins including heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1), which besides removing toxic heme, produces biliverdin, iron ions and carbon monoxide. HO-1 and their products exert beneficial effects through the protection against oxidative injury, regulation of apoptosis, modulation of inflammation as well as contribution to angiogenesis. On the other hand, the disturbances in the proper HO-1 level are associated with the pathogenesis of some age-dependent disorders, including neurodegeneration, cancer or macular degeneration. This review summarizes our knowledge about Nrf2 and HO-1 across different phyla suggesting their conservative role as stress-protective and anti-aging factors. PMID:27100828

  10. Pi class glutathione S-transferase genes are regulated by Nrf 2 through an evolutionarily conserved regulatory element in zebrafish

    PubMed Central

    Suzuki, Takafumi; Takagi, Yaeko; Osanai, Hitoshi; Li, Li; Takeuchi, Miki; Katoh, Yasutake; Kobayashi, Makoto; Yamamoto, Masayuki

    2005-01-01

    Pi class GSTs (glutathione S-transferases) are a member of the vertebrate GST family of proteins that catalyse the conjugation of GSH to electrophilic compounds. The expression of Pi class GST genes can be induced by exposure to electrophiles. We demonstrated previously that the transcription factor Nrf 2 (NF-E2 p45-related factor 2) mediates this induction, not only in mammals, but also in fish. In the present study, we have isolated the genomic region of zebrafish containing the genes gstp1 and gstp2. The regulatory regions of zebrafish gstp1 and gstp2 have been examined by GFP (green fluorescent protein)-reporter gene analyses using microinjection into zebrafish embryos. Deletion and point-mutation analyses of the gstp1 promoter showed that an ARE (antioxidant-responsive element)-like sequence is located 50 bp upstream of the transcription initiation site which is essential for Nrf 2 transactivation. Using EMSA (electrophoretic mobility-shift assay) analysis we showed that zebrafish Nrf 2–MafK heterodimer specifically bound to this sequence. All the vertebrate Pi class GST genes harbour a similar ARE-like sequence in their promoter regions. We propose that this sequence is a conserved target site for Nrf 2 in the Pi class GST genes. PMID:15654768

  11. Evolutionarily Conserved Regulatory Motifs in the Promoter of the Arabidopsis Clock Gene LATE ELONGATED HYPOCOTYL[C][W

    PubMed Central

    Spensley, Mark; Kim, Jae-Yean; Picot, Emma; Reid, John; Ott, Sascha; Helliwell, Chris; Carré, Isabelle A.

    2009-01-01

    The transcriptional regulation of the LATE ELONGATED HYPOCOTYL (LHY) gene is key to the structure of the circadian oscillator, integrating information from multiple regulatory pathways. We identified a minimal region of the LHY promoter that was sufficient for rhythmic expression. Another upstream sequence was also required for appropriate waveform of transcription and for maximum amplitude of oscillations under both diurnal and free-running conditions. We showed that two classes of protein complexes interact with a G-box and with novel 5A motifs; mutation of these sites reduced the amplitude of oscillation and broadened the peak of expression. A genome-wide bioinformatic analysis showed that these sites were enriched in phase-specific clusters of rhythmically expressed genes. Comparative genomic analyses showed that these motifs were conserved in orthologous promoters from several species. A position-specific scoring matrix for the 5A sites suggested similarity to CArG boxes, which are recognized by MADS box transcription factors. In support of this, the FLOWERING LOCUS C (FLC) protein was shown to interact with the LHY promoter in planta. This suggests a mechanism by which FLC might affect circadian period. PMID:19789276

  12. Novel Insights into the Role of Neurospora crassa NDUFAF2, an Evolutionarily Conserved Mitochondrial Complex I Assembly Factor

    PubMed Central

    Pereira, Bruno; Videira, Arnaldo

    2013-01-01

    Complex I deficiency is commonly associated with mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation diseases. Mutations in nuclear genes encoding structural subunits or assembly factors of complex I have been increasingly identified as the cause of the diseases. One such factor, NDUFAF2, is a paralog of the NDUFA12 structural subunit of the enzyme, but the mechanism by which it exerts its function remains unknown. Herein, we demonstrate that the Neurospora crassa NDUFAF2 homologue, the 13.4L protein, is a late assembly factor that associates with complex I assembly intermediates containing the membrane arm and the connecting part but lacking the N module of the enzyme. Furthermore, we provide evidence that dissociation of the assembly factor is dependent on the incorporation of the putative regulatory module composed of the subunits of 13.4 (NDUFA12), 18.4 (NDUFS6), and 21 (NDUFS4) kDa. Our results demonstrate that the 13.4L protein is a complex I assembly factor functionally conserved from fungi to mammals. PMID:23648483

  13. An Evolutionarily Conserved Switch in Response to GABA Affects Development and Behavior of the Locomotor Circuit of Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Han, Bingjie; Bellemer, Andrew; Koelle, Michael R.

    2015-01-01

    The neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) is depolarizing in the developing vertebrate brain, but in older animals switches to hyperpolarizing and becomes the major inhibitory neurotransmitter in adults. We discovered a similar developmental switch in GABA response in Caenorhabditis elegans and have genetically analyzed its mechanism and function in a well-defined circuit. Worm GABA neurons innervate body wall muscles to control locomotion. Activation of GABAA receptors with their agonist muscimol in newly hatched first larval (L1) stage animals excites muscle contraction and thus is depolarizing. At the mid-L1 stage, as the GABAergic neurons rewire onto their mature muscle targets, muscimol shifts to relaxing muscles and thus has switched to hyperpolarizing. This muscimol response switch depends on chloride transporters in the muscles analogous to those that control GABA response in mammalian neurons: the chloride accumulator sodium-potassium-chloride-cotransporter-1 (NKCC-1) is required for the early depolarizing muscimol response, while the two chloride extruders potassium-chloride-cotransporter-2 (KCC-2) and anion-bicarbonate-transporter-1 (ABTS-1) are required for the later hyperpolarizing response. Using mutations that disrupt GABA signaling, we found that neural circuit development still proceeds to completion but with an ∼6-hr delay. Using optogenetic activation of GABAergic neurons, we found that endogenous GABAA signaling in early L1 animals, although presumably depolarizing, does not cause an excitatory response. Thus a developmental depolarizing-to-hyperpolarizing shift is an ancient conserved feature of GABA signaling, but existing theories for why this shift occurs appear inadequate to explain its function upon rigorous genetic analysis of a well-defined neural circuit. PMID:25644702

  14. A Functional Genomic Screen for Evolutionarily Conserved Genes Required for Lifespan and Immunity in Germline-Deficient C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Sinha, Amit; Rae, Robbie

    2014-01-01

    The reproductive system regulates lifespan in insects, nematodes and vertebrates. In Caenorhabditis elegans removal of germline increases lifespan by 60% which is dependent upon insulin signaling, nuclear hormone signaling, autophagy and fat metabolism and their microRNA-regulators. Germline-deficient C. elegans are also more resistant to various bacterial pathogens but the underlying molecular mechanisms are largely unknown. Firstly, we demonstrate that previously identified genes that regulate the extended lifespan of germline-deficient C. elegans (daf-2, daf-16, daf-12, tcer-1, mir-7.1 and nhr-80) are also essential for resistance to the pathogenic bacterium Xenorhabdus nematophila. We then use a novel unbiased approach combining laser cell ablation, whole genome microarrays, RNAi screening and exposure to X. nematophila to generate a comprehensive genome-wide catalog of genes potentially required for increased lifespan and innate immunity in germline-deficient C. elegans. We find 3,440 genes to be upregulated in C. elegans germline-deficient animals in a gonad dependent manner, which are significantly enriched for genes involved in insulin signaling, fatty acid desaturation, translation elongation and proteasome complex function. Using RNAi against a subset of 150 candidate genes selected from the microarray results, we show that the upregulated genes such as transcription factor DAF-16/FOXO, the PTEN homolog lipid phosphatase DAF-18 and several components of the proteasome complex (rpn-6.1, rpn-7, rpn-9, rpn-10, rpt-6, pbs-3 and pbs-6) are essential for both lifespan and immunity of germline deficient animals. We also identify a novel role for genes including par-5 and T12G3.6 in both lifespan-extension and increased survival on X. nematophila. From an evolutionary perspective, most of the genes differentially expressed in germline deficient C. elegans also show a conserved expression pattern in germline deficient Pristionchus pacificus, a nematode species

  15. Abscisic acid-induced gene expression in the liverwort Marchantia polymorpha is mediated by evolutionarily conserved promoter elements.

    PubMed

    Ghosh, Totan K; Kaneko, Midori; Akter, Khaleda; Murai, Shuhei; Komatsu, Kenji; Ishizaki, Kimitsune; Yamato, Katsuyuki T; Kohchi, Takayuki; Takezawa, Daisuke

    2016-04-01

    Abscisic acid (ABA) is a phytohormone widely distributed among members of the land plant lineage (Embryophyta), regulating dormancy, stomata closure and tolerance to environmental stresses. In angiosperms (Magnoliophyta), ABA-induced gene expression is mediated by promoter elements such as the G-box-like ACGT-core motifs recognized by bZIP transcription factors. In contrast, the mode of regulation by ABA of gene expression in liverworts (Marchantiophyta), representing one of the earliest diverging land plant groups, has not been elucidated. In this study, we used promoters of the liverwort Marchantia polymorpha dehydrin and the wheat Em genes fused to the β-glucuronidase (GUS) reporter gene to investigate ABA-induced gene expression in liverworts. Transient assays of cultured cells of Marchantia indicated that ACGT-core motifs proximal to the transcription initiation site play a role in the ABA-induced gene expression. The RY sequence recognized by B3 transcriptional regulators was also shown to be responsible for the ABA-induced gene expression. In transgenic Marchantia plants, ABA treatment elicited an increase in GUS expression in young gemmalings, which was abolished by simultaneous disruption of the ACGT-core and RY elements. ABA-induced GUS expression was less obvious in mature thalli than in young gemmalings, associated with reductions in sensitivity to exogenous ABA during gametophyte growth. In contrast, lunularic acid, which had been suggested to function as an ABA-like substance, had no effect on GUS expression. The results demonstrate the presence of ABA-specific response mechanisms mediated by conserved cis-regulatory elements in liverworts, implying that the mechanisms had been acquired in the common ancestors of embryophytes. PMID:26456006

  16. An evolutionarily conserved switch in response to GABA affects development and behavior of the locomotor circuit of Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Han, Bingjie; Bellemer, Andrew; Koelle, Michael R

    2015-04-01

    The neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) is depolarizing in the developing vertebrate brain, but in older animals switches to hyperpolarizing and becomes the major inhibitory neurotransmitter in adults. We discovered a similar developmental switch in GABA response in Caenorhabditis elegans and have genetically analyzed its mechanism and function in a well-defined circuit. Worm GABA neurons innervate body wall muscles to control locomotion. Activation of GABAA receptors with their agonist muscimol in newly hatched first larval (L1) stage animals excites muscle contraction and thus is depolarizing. At the mid-L1 stage, as the GABAergic neurons rewire onto their mature muscle targets, muscimol shifts to relaxing muscles and thus has switched to hyperpolarizing. This muscimol response switch depends on chloride transporters in the muscles analogous to those that control GABA response in mammalian neurons: the chloride accumulator sodium-potassium-chloride-cotransporter-1 (NKCC-1) is required for the early depolarizing muscimol response, while the two chloride extruders potassium-chloride-cotransporter-2 (KCC-2) and anion-bicarbonate-transporter-1 (ABTS-1) are required for the later hyperpolarizing response. Using mutations that disrupt GABA signaling, we found that neural circuit development still proceeds to completion but with an ∼6-hr delay. Using optogenetic activation of GABAergic neurons, we found that endogenous GABAA signaling in early L1 animals, although presumably depolarizing, does not cause an excitatory response. Thus a developmental depolarizing-to-hyperpolarizing shift is an ancient conserved feature of GABA signaling, but existing theories for why this shift occurs appear inadequate to explain its function upon rigorous genetic analysis of a well-defined neural circuit. PMID:25644702

  17. Evolutionarily conserved repressive activity of WOX proteins mediates leaf blade outgrowth and floral organ development in plants

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Hao; Niu, Lifang; McHale, Neil A.; Ohme-Takagi, Masaru; Mysore, Kirankumar S.; Tadege, Million

    2013-01-01

    The WUSCHEL related homeobox (WOX) genes play key roles in stem cell maintenance, embryonic patterning, and lateral organ development. WOX genes have been categorized into three clades—ancient, intermediate, and modern/WUS—based on phylogenetic analysis, but a functional basis for this classification has not been established. Using the classical bladeless lam1 mutant of Nicotiana sylvestris as a genetic tool, we examined the function of the Medicago truncatula WOX gene, STENOFOLIA (STF), in controlling leaf blade outgrowth. STF and LAM1 are functional orthologs. We found that the introduction of mutations into the WUS-box of STF (STFm1) reduces its ability to complement the lam1 mutant. Fusion of an exogenous repressor domain to STFm1 restores complementation, whereas fusion of an exogenous activator domain to STFm1 enhances the narrow leaf phenotype. These results indicate that transcriptional repressor activity mediated by the WUS-box of STF acts to promote blade outgrowth. With the exception of WOX7, the WUS-box is conserved in the modern clade WOX genes, but is not found in members of the intermediate or ancient clades. Consistent with this, all members of the modern clade except WOX7 can complement the lam1 mutant when expressed using the STF promoter, but members of the intermediate and ancient clades cannot. Furthermore, we found that fusion of either the WUS-box or an exogenous repressor domain to WOX7 or to members of intermediate and ancient WOX clades results in a gain-of-function ability to complement lam1 blade outgrowth. These results suggest that modern clade WOX genes have evolved for repressor activity through acquisition of the WUS-box. PMID:23248305

  18. An evolutionarily conserved DNA architecture determines target specificity of the TWIST family bHLH transcription factors

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Andrew T.; Liu, Yuanjie; Ayyanathan, Kasirajan; Benner, Chris; Jiang, Yike; Prokop, Jeremy W.; Paz, Helicia; Wang, Dong; Li, Hai-Ri; Fu, Xiang-Dong

    2015-01-01

    Basic helix–loop–helix (bHLH) transcription factors recognize the canonical E-box (CANNTG) to regulate gene transcription; however, given the prevalence of E-boxes in a genome, it has been puzzling how individual bHLH proteins selectively recognize E-box sequences on their targets. TWIST is a bHLH transcription factor that promotes epithelial–mesenchymal transition (EMT) during development and tumor metastasis. High-resolution mapping of TWIST occupancy in human and Drosophila genomes reveals that TWIST, but not other bHLH proteins, recognizes a unique double E-box motif with two E-boxes spaced preferentially by 5 nucleotides. Using molecular modeling and binding kinetic analyses, we found that the strict spatial configuration in the double E-box motif aligns two TWIST–E47 dimers on the same face of DNA, thus providing a high-affinity site for a highly stable intramolecular tetramer. Biochemical analyses showed that the WR domain of TWIST dimerizes to mediate tetramer formation, which is functionally required for TWIST-induced EMT. These results uncover a novel mechanism for a bHLH transcription factor to recognize a unique spatial configuration of E-boxes to achieve target specificity. The WR–WR domain interaction uncovered here sets an example of target gene specificity of a bHLH protein being controlled allosterically by a domain outside of the bHLH region. PMID:25762439

  19. The BAT1 gene in the MHC encodes an evolutionarily conserved putative nuclear RNA helicase of the DEAD family

    SciTech Connect

    Peelman, L.J.; Van Zeveren, A.; Coppeiters, W.

    1995-03-20

    The BAT1 gene has previously been identified about 30 kb upstream from the tumor necrosis factor (TNF) locus and close to a NF{sub kb}-related gene of the nuclear factor family in the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) of human, mouse, and pig. We now show that the BAT1 translation product is the homolog of the rat p47 nuclear protein, the WM6 Drosophila gene product, and probably also Ce08102 of Caenorhabditis elegans, all members of the DEAD protein family of ATP-dependent RNA helicases. This family has more than 40 members, including the eukaryotic translation initiation factor-4A (eIF-4A), the human nuclear protein p68, and the Drosophila oocyte polar granule component vasa. BAT1 spans about 10 kb, is split into 10 exons of varying length, and encodes a protein of 428 amino acids ({approximately}48 kDa). Human and pig BAT1 cDNAs display 95.6% identity in the coding region and 80% identity in the 5{prime} and 3{prime} noncoding regions. Several repeat sequences of different types were identified in introns of the porcine BAT1 gene. Three different mRNAs, 4.1,1.7, and 0.9 kb, respectively, were detected in all tissues analyzed upon hybridization with porcine BAT1 cDNA. Transfection and expression of human BAT1 cDNA after tagging with a heterologous antibody recognition epitope revealed a nuclear localization of the hybrid protein. An MspI RFLP was detected in an SLA class I typed family, confirming the localization of the BAT1 gene in the porcine MHC. BAT1 thus encodes a putative nuclear ATP-dependent RNA helicase and is likely to have an indispensable function. 35 refs., 6 figs., 1 tab.

  20. Hydra meiosis reveals unexpected conservation of structural synaptonemal complex proteins across metazoans

    PubMed Central

    Fraune, Johanna; Alsheimer, Manfred; Volff, Jean-Nicolas; Busch, Karoline; Fraune, Sebastian; Bosch, Thomas C. G.; Benavente, Ricardo

    2012-01-01

    The synaptonemal complex (SC) is a key structure of meiosis, mediating the stable pairing (synapsis) of homologous chromosomes during prophase I. Its remarkable tripartite structure is evolutionarily well conserved and can be found in almost all sexually reproducing organisms. However, comparison of the different SC protein components in the common meiosis model organisms Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Arabidopsis thaliana, Caenorhabditis elegans, Drosophila melanogaster, and Mus musculus revealed no sequence homology. This discrepancy challenged the hypothesis that the SC arose only once in evolution. To pursue this matter we focused on the evolution of SYCP1 and SYCP3, the two major structural SC proteins of mammals. Remarkably, our comparative bioinformatic and expression studies revealed that SYCP1 and SYCP3 are also components of the SC in the basal metazoan Hydra. In contrast to previous assumptions, we therefore conclude that SYCP1 and SYCP3 form monophyletic groups of orthologous proteins across metazoans. PMID:23012415

  1. Violation of an evolutionarily conserved immunoglobulin diversity gene sequence preference promotes production of dsDNA-specific IgG antibodies.

    PubMed

    Silva-Sanchez, Aaron; Liu, Cun Ren; Vale, Andre M; Khass, Mohamed; Kapoor, Pratibha; Elgavish, Ada; Ivanov, Ivaylo I; Ippolito, Gregory C; Schelonka, Robert L; Schoeb, Trenton R; Burrows, Peter D; Schroeder, Harry W

    2015-01-01

    Variability in the developing antibody repertoire is focused on the third complementarity determining region of the H chain (CDR-H3), which lies at the center of the antigen binding site where it often plays a decisive role in antigen binding. The power of VDJ recombination and N nucleotide addition has led to the common conception that the sequence of CDR-H3 is unrestricted in its variability and random in its composition. Under this view, the immune response is solely controlled by somatic positive and negative clonal selection mechanisms that act on individual B cells to promote production of protective antibodies and prevent the production of self-reactive antibodies. This concept of a repertoire of random antigen binding sites is inconsistent with the observation that diversity (DH) gene segment sequence content by reading frame (RF) is evolutionarily conserved, creating biases in the prevalence and distribution of individual amino acids in CDR-H3. For example, arginine, which is often found in the CDR-H3 of dsDNA binding autoantibodies, is under-represented in the commonly used DH RFs rearranged by deletion, but is a frequent component of rarely used inverted RF1 (iRF1), which is rearranged by inversion. To determine the effect of altering this germline bias in DH gene segment sequence on autoantibody production, we generated mice that by genetic manipulation are forced to utilize an iRF1 sequence encoding two arginines. Over a one year period we collected serial serum samples from these unimmunized, specific pathogen-free mice and found that more than one-fifth of them contained elevated levels of dsDNA-binding IgG, but not IgM; whereas mice with a wild type DH sequence did not. Thus, germline bias against the use of arginine enriched DH sequence helps to reduce the likelihood of producing self-reactive antibodies. PMID:25706374

  2. Epstein-Barr virus infection induces expression in B lymphocytes of a novel gene encoding an evolutionarily conserved 55-kilodalton actin-bundling protein.

    PubMed

    Mosialos, G; Yamashiro, S; Baughman, R W; Matsudaira, P; Vara, L; Matsumura, F; Kieff, E; Birkenbach, M

    1994-11-01

    A novel human mRNA whose expression is induced over 200-fold in B lymphocytes by latent Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) infection was reverse transcribed, cloned, and sequenced. The mRNA is predicted to encode a protein containing four peptides which precisely match amino acid sequences from a previously identified 55-kDa actin-bundling protein, p55. In vitro translation of the cDNA results in a 55-kDa protein which binds to actin filaments in the presence of purified p55 from HeLa cells. The p55 mRNA is undetectable in non-EBV-infected B- and T-cell lines or in a myelomonocytic cell line (U937). Newly infected primary human B lymphocytes, EBV-transformed B-cell lines, latently infected Burkitt tumor cells expressing EBNA2 and LMP1, a chronic myelogenous leukemia cell line (K562), and an osteosarcoma cell line (TK143) contain high levels of p55 mRNA or protein. In EBV-transformed B cells, p55 localizes to perinuclear cytoplasm and to cell surface processes that resemble filopodia. The p55 mRNA is detected at high levels in spleen and brain tissues, at moderate levels in lung and placenta tissues, and at low levels in skeletal muscle, liver, and tonsil tissues and is undetectable in heart, kidney, pancreas, and bone marrow tissues. Immunohistochemical staining of human brain tissue demonstrates p55 localization to the perinuclear cytoplasm and dendritic processes of many, but not all, types of cortical or cerebellar neurons, to glial cells, and to capillary endothelial cells. In cultured primary rat neurons, p55 is distributed throughout the perinuclear cytoplasm and in subcortical filamentous structures of dendrites and growth cones. p55 is highly evolutionarily conserved since it shows 40% amino acid sequence identity to the Drosophila singed gene product and 37% identity to fascin, an echinoderm actin-bundling protein. The evolutionary conservation of p55 and its lack of extensive homology to other actin-binding proteins suggest that p55 has specific microfilament

  3. The type 1 human immunodeficiency virus Tat binding protein is a transcriptional activator belonging to an additional family of evolutionarily conserved genes.

    PubMed Central

    Ohana, B; Moore, P A; Ruben, S M; Southgate, C D; Green, M R; Rosen, C A

    1993-01-01

    The type 1 human immunodeficiency virus Tat protein is a powerful transcriptional activator when bound to an RNA structure (TAR) present at the extreme 5' terminus of viral mRNA. Since transcriptional activation requires binding of Tat to RNA, it has been suggested that Tat enhances initiation or elongation through a direct interaction with cellular transcription factors. Here we show through protein fusion experiments that the previously identified cellular Tat binding protein, TBP-1, although unable to bind DNA, is a strong transcriptional activator when brought into proximity of several promoter elements. Transcriptional activity depends upon the integrity of at least two highly conserved domains: one resembling a nucleotide-binding motif and the other motif common to proteins with helicase activity. Our studies further reveal that TBP-1 represents one member of a large, highly conserved gene family that encodes proteins demonstrating strong amino acid conservation across species. Finally, we identified a second family member that, although 77% similar to TBP-1, does not activate transcription from the promoters examined. This finding, together with the observation that TBP-1 does not activate each promoter examined, suggests that this gene family may encode promoter-specific transcriptional activators. Images PMID:8419915

  4. Conservation of AtTZF1, AtTZF2, and AtTZF3 homolog gene regulation by salt stress in evolutionarily distant plant species

    PubMed Central

    D’Orso, Fabio; De Leonardis, Anna M.; Salvi, Sergio; Gadaleta, Agata; Ruberti, Ida; Cattivelli, Luigi; Morelli, Giorgio; Mastrangelo, Anna M.

    2015-01-01

    Arginine-rich tandem zinc-finger proteins (RR-TZF) participate in a wide range of plant developmental processes and adaptive responses to abiotic stress, such as cold, salt, and drought. This study investigates the conservation of the genes AtTZF1-5 at the level of their sequences and expression across plant species. The genomic sequences of the two RR-TZF genes TdTZF1-A and TdTZF1-B were isolated in durum wheat and assigned to chromosomes 3A and 3B, respectively. Sequence comparisons revealed that they encode proteins that are highly homologous to AtTZF1, AtTZF2, and AtTZF3. The expression profiles of these RR-TZF durum wheat and Arabidopsis proteins support a common function in the regulation of seed germination and responses to abiotic stress. In particular, analysis of plants with attenuated and overexpressed AtTZF3 indicate that AtTZF3 is a negative regulator of seed germination under conditions of salt stress. Finally, comparative sequence analyses establish that the RR-TZF genes are encoded by lower plants, including the bryophyte Physcomitrella patens and the alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. The regulation of the Physcomitrella AtTZF1-2-3-like genes by salt stress strongly suggests that a subgroup of the RR-TZF proteins has a function that has been conserved throughout evolution. PMID:26136754

  5. (dC-dA)n.(dG-dT)n sequences have evolutionarily conserved chromosomal locations in Drosophila with implications for roles in chromosome structure and function.

    PubMed Central

    Pardue, M L; Lowenhaupt, K; Rich, A; Nordheim, A

    1987-01-01

    In situ hybridization of (dC-dA)n.(dG-dT)n to the polytene chromosomes of Drosophila melanogaster reveals a clearly non-random distribution of chromosomal sites for this sequence. Sites are distributed over most euchromatic regions but the density of sites along the X chromosome is significantly higher than the density over the autosomes. All autosomes show approximately equal levels of hybridization except chromosome 4 which has no detectable stretches of (dC-dA)n.(dG-dT)n. Another striking feature is the lack of hybridization of the beta-heterochromatin of the chromocenter. The specific sites are conserved between different strains of D. melanogaster. The same overall chromosomal pattern of hybridization is seen for the other Drosophila species studied, including D. simulans, a sibling species with a much lower content of middle repetitive DNA, and D. virilis, a distantly related species. The evolutionary conservation of the distribution of (dC-dA)n.(dG-dT)n suggests that these sequences are of functional importance. The distribution patterns seen for D. pseudoobscura and D. miranda raise interesting speculations about function. In these species a chromosome equivalent to an autosomal arm of D. melanogaster has been translocated onto the X chromosome and acquired dosage compensation. In each species the new arm of the X also has a higher density of (dC-dA)n.(dG-dT)n similar to that seen on other X chromosomes. In addition to correlations with dosage compensation, the depletion of (dC-dA)n.(dG-dT)n in beta-heterochromatin and chromosome 4 may also be related to the fact that these regions do not normally undergo meiotic recombination. Images Fig. 1. Fig. 2. Fig. 3. Fig. 4. Fig. 5. Fig. 6. Fig. 7. Fig. 8. Fig. 9. Fig. 10. PMID:3111846

  6. An evolutionarily conserved interaction of tumor suppressor protein Pdcd4 with the poly(A)-binding protein contributes to translation suppression by Pdcd4

    PubMed Central

    Fehler, Olesja; Singh, Priyanka; Haas, Astrid; Ulrich, Diana; Müller, Jan P.; Ohnheiser, Johanna; Klempnauer, Karl-Heinz

    2014-01-01

    The tumor suppressor protein programmed cell death 4 (Pdcd4) has been implicated in the translational regulation of specific mRNAs, however, the identities of the natural Pdcd4 target mRNAs and the mechanisms by which Pdcd4 affects their translation are not well understood. Pdcd4 binds to the eukaryotic translation initiation factor eIF4A and inhibits its helicase activity, which has suggested that Pdcd4 suppresses translation initiation of mRNAs containing structured 5′-untranslated regions. Recent work has revealed a second inhibitory mechanism, which is eIF4A-independent and involves direct RNA-binding of Pdcd4 to the target mRNAs. We have now identified the poly(A)-binding protein (PABP) as a novel direct interaction partner of Pdcd4. The ability to interact with PABP is shared between human and Drosophila Pdcd4, indicating that it has been highly conserved during evolution. Mutants of Pdcd4 that have lost the ability to interact with PABP fail to stably associate with ribosomal complexes in sucrose density gradients and to suppress translation, as exemplified by c-myb mRNA. Overall, our work identifies PABP as a novel functionally relevant Pdcd4 interaction partner that contributes to the regulation of translation by Pdcd4. PMID:25190455

  7. An evolutionarily conserved interaction of tumor suppressor protein Pdcd4 with the poly(A)-binding protein contributes to translation suppression by Pdcd4.

    PubMed

    Fehler, Olesja; Singh, Priyanka; Haas, Astrid; Ulrich, Diana; Müller, Jan P; Ohnheiser, Johanna; Klempnauer, Karl-Heinz

    2014-01-01

    The tumor suppressor protein programmed cell death 4 (Pdcd4) has been implicated in the translational regulation of specific mRNAs, however, the identities of the natural Pdcd4 target mRNAs and the mechanisms by which Pdcd4 affects their translation are not well understood. Pdcd4 binds to the eukaryotic translation initiation factor eIF4A and inhibits its helicase activity, which has suggested that Pdcd4 suppresses translation initiation of mRNAs containing structured 5'-untranslated regions. Recent work has revealed a second inhibitory mechanism, which is eIF4A-independent and involves direct RNA-binding of Pdcd4 to the target mRNAs. We have now identified the poly(A)-binding protein (PABP) as a novel direct interaction partner of Pdcd4. The ability to interact with PABP is shared between human and Drosophila Pdcd4, indicating that it has been highly conserved during evolution. Mutants of Pdcd4 that have lost the ability to interact with PABP fail to stably associate with ribosomal complexes in sucrose density gradients and to suppress translation, as exemplified by c-myb mRNA. Overall, our work identifies PABP as a novel functionally relevant Pdcd4 interaction partner that contributes to the regulation of translation by Pdcd4. PMID:25190455

  8. Expression analysis of five zebrafish RXFP3 homologues reveals evolutionary conservation of gene expression pattern.

    PubMed

    Donizetti, Aldo; Fiengo, Marcella; Iazzetti, Giovanni; del Gaudio, Rosanna; Di Giaimo, Rossella; Pariante, Paolo; Minucci, Sergio; Aniello, Francesco

    2015-01-01

    Relaxin peptides exert different functions in reproduction and neuroendocrine processes via interaction with two evolutionarily unrelated groups of receptors: RXFP1 and RXFP2 on one hand, RXFP3 and RXFP4 on the other hand. Evolution of receptor genes after splitting of tetrapods and teleost lineage led to a different retention rate between mammals and fish, with the latter having more gene copies compared to the former. In order to improve our knowledge on the evolution of the relaxin ligands/receptors system and have insights on their function in early stages of life, in the present paper we analyzed the expression pattern of five zebrafish RXFP3 homologue genes during embryonic development. In our analysis, we show that only two of the five genes are expressed during embryogenesis and that their transcripts are present in all the developmental stages. Spatial localization analysis of these transcripts revealed that the gene expression is restricted in specific territories starting from early pharyngula stage. Both genes are expressed in the brain but in different cell clusters and in extra-neural territories, one gene in the interrenal gland and the other in the pancreas. These two genes share expression territories with the homologue mammalian counterpart, highlighting a general conservation of gene expression regulatory processes and their putative function during evolution that are established early in vertebrate embryogenesis. PMID:25384467

  9. Identification of proliferation-induced genes in Arabidopsis thaliana. Characterization of a new member of the highly evolutionarily conserved histone H2A.F/Z variant subfamily.

    PubMed Central

    Callard, D; Mazzolini, L

    1997-01-01

    The changes in gene expression associated with the reinitiation of cell division and subsequent progression through the cell cycle in Arabidopsis thaliana cell-suspension cultures were investigated. Partial synchronization of cells was achieved by a technique combining phosphate starvation and a transient treatment with the DNA replication inhibitor aphidicolin. Six cDNAs corresponding to genes highly induced in proliferating cells and showing cell-cycle-regulated expression were obtained by the mRNA differential display technique. Full-length cDNA clones (cH2BAt and cH2AvAt) corresponding to two of the display products were subsequently isolated. The cH2BAt clone codes for a novel histone H2B protein, whereas the cH2AvAt cDNA corresponds to a gene encoding a new member of the highly conserved histone H2A.F/Z subfamily of chromosomal proteins. Further studies indicated that H2AvAt mRNA expression is tightly correlated with cell proliferation in cell-suspension cultures, and that closely related analogs of the encoded protein exist in Arabidopsis. The implications of the conservation of histone H2A.F/Z variants in plants are discussed. PMID:9414552

  10. spalt encodes an evolutionarily conserved zinc finger protein of novel structure which provides homeotic gene function in the head and tail region of the Drosophila embryo.

    PubMed Central

    Kühnlein, R P; Frommer, G; Friedrich, M; Gonzalez-Gaitan, M; Weber, A; Wagner-Bernholz, J F; Gehring, W J; Jäckle, H; Schuh, R

    1994-01-01

    The region specific homeotic gene spalt (sal) of Drosophila melanogaster promotes the specification of terminal pattern elements as opposed to segments in the trunk. Our results show that the previously reported sal transcription unit was misidentified. Based on P-element mediated germ line transformation and DNA sequence analysis of sal mutant alleles, we identified the transcription unit that carries sal function. sal is located close to the misidentified transcription unit, and it is expressed in similar temporal and spatial patterns during embryogenesis. The sal gene encodes a zinc finger protein of novel structure composed of three widely spaced 'double zinc finger' motifs of internally conserved sequences and a single zinc finger motif of different sequence. Antibodies produced against the sal protein show that sal is first expressed at the blastoderm stage and later in restricted areas of the embryonic nervous system as well as in the developing trachea. The antibodies detect sal homologous proteins in corresponding spatial and temporal patterns in the embryos of related insect species. Sequence analysis of the sal gene of Drosophila virilis, a species which is phylogenetically separated by approximately 60 million years, suggests that the sal function is conserved during evolution, consistent with its proposed role in head formation during arthropod evolution. Images PMID:7905822

  11. Hoxb-2 transcriptional activation in rhombomeres 3 and 5 requires an evolutionarily conserved cis-acting element in addition to the Krox-20 binding site.

    PubMed Central

    Vesque, C; Maconochie, M; Nonchev, S; Ariza-McNaughton, L; Kuroiwa, A; Charnay, P; Krumlauf, R

    1996-01-01

    Segmentation is a key feature of the development of the vertebrate hindbrain where it involves the generation of repetitive morphological units termed rhombomeres (r). Hox genes are likely to play an essential role in the specification of segmental identity and we have been investigating their regulation. We show here that the mouse and chicken Hoxb-2 genes are dependent for their expression in r3 and r5 on homologous enhancer elements and on binding to this enhancer of the r3/r5-specific transcriptional activator Krox-20. Among the three Krox-20 binding sites of the mouse Hoxb-2 enhancer, only the high-affinity site is absolutely necessary for activity. In contrast, we have identified an additional cis-acting element, Box1, essential for r3/r5 enhancer activity. It is conserved both in sequence and in position respective to the high-affinity Krox-20 binding site within the mouse and chicken enhancers. Furthermore, a short 44 bp sequence spanning the Box1 and Krox-20 sites can act as an r3/r5 enhancer when oligomerized. Box1 may therefore constitute a recognition sequence for another factor cooperating with Krox-20. Taken together, these data demonstrate the conservation of Hox gene regulation and of Krox-20 function during vertebrate evolution. Images PMID:8895582

  12. Critical role of evolutionarily conserved glycosylation at Asn211 in the intracellular trafficking and activity of sialyltransferase ST3Gal-II.

    PubMed

    Ruggiero, Fernando M; Vilcaes, Aldo A; Iglesias-Bartolomé, Ramiro; Daniotti, José L

    2015-07-01

    ST3Gal-II, a type II transmembrane protein, is the main mammalian sialyltransferase responsible for GD1a and GT1b ganglioside biosynthesis in brain. It contains two putative N-glycosylation sites (Asn(92) and Asn(211)). Whereas Asn(92) is only conserved in mammalian species, Asn(211) is highly conserved in mammals, birds and fish. The present study explores the occupancy and relevance for intracellular trafficking and enzyme activity of these potential N-glycosylations in human ST3Gal-II. We found that ST3Gal-II distributes along the Golgi complex, mainly in proximal compartments. By pharmacological, biochemical and site-directed mutagenesis, we observed that ST3Gal-II is mostly N-glycosylated at Asn(211) and that this co-translational modification is critical for its exit from the endoplasmic reticulum and proper Golgi localization. The individual N-glycosylation sites had different effects on ST3Gal-II enzymatic activity. Whereas the N-glycan at position Asn(211) seems to negatively influence the activity of the enzyme using both glycolipid and glycoprotein as acceptor substrates, the single N-glycan mutant at Asn(92) had only a moderate effect. Lastly, we demonstrated that the N-terminal ST3Gal-II domain containing the cytosolic, transmembrane and stem region (amino acids 1-51) is able to drive a protein reporter out of the endoplasmic reticulum and to retain it in the Golgi complex. This suggests that the C-terminal domain of ST3Gal-II depends on N-glycosylation to attain an optimum conformation for proper exit from the endoplasmic reticulum, but it does not represent an absolute requirement for Golgi complex retention of the enzyme. PMID:25916169

  13. Evolutionarily conserved organization of the dopaminergic system in lamprey: SNc/VTA afferent and efferent connectivity and D2 receptor expression.

    PubMed

    Pérez-Fernández, Juan; Stephenson-Jones, Marcus; Suryanarayana, Shreyas M; Robertson, Brita; Grillner, Sten

    2014-12-01

    The dopaminergic system influences motor behavior, signals reward and novelty, and is an essential component of the basal ganglia in all vertebrates including the lamprey, one of the phylogenetically oldest vertebrates. The intrinsic organization and function of the lamprey basal ganglia is highly conserved. For instance, the direct and indirect pathways are modulated through dopamine D1 and D2 receptors in lamprey and in mammals. The nucleus of the tuberculum posterior, a homologue of the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc)/ventral tegmental area (VTA) is present in lamprey, but only scarce data exist about its connectivity. Likewise, the D2 receptor is expressed in the striatum, but little is known about its localization in other brain areas. We used in situ hybridization and tracer injections, both in combination with tyrosine hydroxylase immunohistochemistry, to characterize the SNc/VTA efferent and afferent connectivity, and to relate its projection pattern with D2 receptor expression in particular. We show that most features of the dopaminergic system are highly conserved. As in mammals, the direct pallial (cortex in mammals) input and the basal ganglia connectivity with the SNc/VTA are present as part of the evaluation system, as well as input from the tectum as the evolutionary basis for salience/novelty detection. Moreover, the SNc/VTA receives sensory information from the olfactory bulbs, optic tectum, octavolateral area, and dorsal column nucleus, and it innervates, apart from the nigrostriatal pathway, several motor-related areas. This suggests that the dopaminergic system also contributes to the control of different motor centers at the brainstem level. PMID:24942187

  14. Functional role of evolutionarily highly conserved residues, N-glycosylation level and domains of the Leishmania miltefosine transporter-Cdc50 subunit.

    PubMed

    García-Sánchez, Sebastián; Sánchez-Cañete, María P; Gamarro, Francisco; Castanys, Santiago

    2014-04-01

    Cdc50 (cell-cycle control protein 50) is a family of conserved eukaryotic proteins that interact with P4-ATPases (phospholipid translocases). Cdc50 association is essential for the endoplasmic reticulum export of P4-ATPases and proper translocase activity. In the present study, we analysed the role of Leishmania infantum LiRos3, the Cdc50 subunit of the P4-ATPase MLF (miltefosine) transporter [LiMT (L. infantum MLF transporter)], on trafficking and complex functionality using site-directed mutagenesis and domain substitution. We identified 22 invariant residues in the Cdc50 proteins from L. infantum, human and yeast. Seven of these residues are found in the extracellular domain of LiRos3, the conservation of which is critical for ensuring that LiMT arrives at the plasma membrane. The substitution of other invariant residues affects complex trafficking to a lesser extent. Furthermore, invariant residues located in the N-terminal cytosolic domain play a role in the transport activity. Partial N-glycosylation of LiRos3 reduces MLF transport and total N-deglycosylation completely inhibits LiMT trafficking to the plasma membrane. One of the N-glycosylation residues is invariant along the Cdc50 family. The transmembrane and exoplasmic domains are not interchangeable with the other two L. infantum Cdc50 proteins to maintain LiMT interaction. Taken together, these findings indicate that both invariant and N-glycosylated residues of LiRos3 are implicated in LiMT trafficking and transport activity. PMID:24447089

  15. Evolutionarily conserved coupling of transcription and alternative splicing in the EPB41 (protein 4.1R) and EPB41L3 (protein 4.1B) genes.

    PubMed

    Tan, Jeff S; Mohandas, Narla; Conboy, John G

    2005-12-01

    Recent studies have shown that transcription and alternative splicing can be mechanistically coupled. In the EPB41 (protein 4.1R) and EPB41L3 (protein 4.1B) genes, we showed previously that promoter/alternative first exon choice is coupled to downstream splicing events in exon 2. Here we demonstrate that this coupling is conserved among several vertebrate classes from fish to mammals. The EPB41 and EPB41L3 genes from fish, bird, amphibian, and mammal genomes exhibit shared features including alternative first exons and differential splice acceptors in exon 2. In all cases, the 5'-most exon (exon 1A) splices exclusively to a weaker internal acceptor site in exon 2, skipping a fragment designated as exon 2'. Conversely, alternative first exons 1B and 1C always splice to the stronger first acceptor site, retaining exon 2'. These correlations are independent of cell type or species of origin. Since exon 2' contains a translation initiation site, splice variants generate protein isoforms with distinct N-termini. We propose that these genes represent a physiologically relevant model system for mechanistic analysis of transcription-coupled alternative splicing. PMID:16242908

  16. Two-ligand priming mechanism for potentiated phosphoinositide synthesis is an evolutionarily conserved feature of Sec14-like phosphatidylinositol and phosphatidylcholine exchange proteins.

    PubMed

    Huang, Jin; Ghosh, Ratna; Tripathi, Ashutosh; Lönnfors, Max; Somerharju, Pentti; Bankaitis, Vytas A

    2016-07-15

    Lipid signaling, particularly phosphoinositide signaling, plays a key role in regulating the extreme polarized membrane growth that drives root hair development in plants. The Arabidopsis AtSFH1 gene encodes a two-domain protein with an amino-terminal Sec14-like phosphatidylinositol transfer protein (PITP) domain linked to a carboxy-terminal nodulin domain. AtSfh1 is critical for promoting the spatially highly organized phosphatidylinositol-4,5-bisphosphate signaling program required for establishment and maintenance of polarized root hair growth. Here we demonstrate that, like the yeast Sec14, the AtSfh1 PITP domain requires both its phosphatidylinositol (PtdIns)- and phosphatidylcholine (PtdCho)-binding properties to stimulate PtdIns-4-phosphate [PtdIns(4)P] synthesis. Moreover, we show that both phospholipid-binding activities are essential for AtSfh1 activity in supporting polarized root hair growth. Finally, we report genetic and biochemical evidence that the two-ligand mechanism for potentiation of PtdIns 4-OH kinase activity is a broadly conserved feature of plant Sec14-nodulin proteins, and that this strategy appeared only late in plant evolution. Taken together, the data indicate that the PtdIns/PtdCho-exchange mechanism for stimulated PtdIns(4)P synthesis either arose independently during evolution in yeast and in higher plants, or a suitable genetic module was introduced to higher plants from a fungal source and subsequently exploited by them. PMID:27193303

  17. Chloroplast Elongation Factor Ts Pro-Protein Is an Evolutionarily Conserved Fusion with the S1 Domain-Containing Plastid-Specific Ribosomal Protein-7

    PubMed Central

    Beligni, María Verónica; Yamaguchi, Kenichi; Mayfield, Stephen P.

    2004-01-01

    The components of chloroplast translation are similar to those of prokaryotic translation but contain some additional unique features. Proteomic analysis of the Chlamydomonas reinhardtii chloroplast ribosome identified an S1-like protein, plastid-specific ribosomal protein-7 (PSRP-7), as a stoichiometric component of the 30S subunit. Here, we report that PSRP-7 is part of a polyprotein that contains PSRP-7 on its amino end and two translation elongation factor Ts (EF-Ts) domains at the carboxy end. We named this polyprotein PETs (for polyprotein of EF-Ts). Pets is a single-copy gene containing the only chloroplast PSRP-7 and EF-Ts sequences found in the C. reinhardtii genome. The pets precursor transcript undergoes alternative splicing to generate three mRNAs with open reading frames (ORFs) of 1.68, 1.8, and 3 kb. A 110-kD pro-protein is translated from the 3-kb ORF, and the majority of this protein is likely posttranslationally processed into the 65-kD protein PSRP-7 and a 55-kD EF-Ts. PETs homologs are found in Arabidopsis thaliana and rice (Oryza sativa). The conservation of the 110-kD PETs polyprotein in the plant kingdom suggests that PSRP-7 and EF-Ts function together in some aspects of chloroplast translation and that the PETs pro-protein may have a novel function as a whole. PMID:15548736

  18. Conservation of Male Sterility 2 function during spore and pollen wall development supports an evolutionarily early recruitment of a core component in the sporopollenin biosynthetic pathway.

    PubMed

    Wallace, Simon; Chater, Caspar C; Kamisugi, Yasuko; Cuming, Andrew C; Wellman, Charles H; Beerling, David J; Fleming, Andrew J

    2015-01-01

    The early evolution of plants required the acquisition of a number of key adaptations to overcome physiological difficulties associated with survival on land. One of these was a tough sporopollenin wall that enclosed reproductive propagules and provided protection from desiccation and UV-B radiation. All land plants possess such walled spores (or their derived homologue, pollen). We took a reverse genetics approach, consisting of knock-out and complementation experiments to test the functional conservation of the sporopollenin-associated gene MALE STERILTY 2 (which is essential for pollen wall development in Arabidopsis thaliana) in the bryophyte Physcomitrella patens. Knock-outs of a putative moss homologue of the A. thaliana MS2 gene, which is highly expressed in the moss sporophyte, led to spores with highly defective walls comparable to that observed in the A. thaliana ms2 mutant, and extremely compromised germination. Conversely, the moss MS2 gene could not rescue the A. thaliana ms2 phenotype. The results presented here suggest that a core component of the biochemical and developmental pathway required for angiosperm pollen wall development was recruited early in land plant evolution but the continued increase in pollen wall complexity observed in angiosperms has been accompanied by divergence in MS2 gene function. PMID:25195943

  19. Whole genome sequencing of Ethiopian highlanders reveals conserved hypoxia tolerance genes

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Although it has long been proposed that genetic factors contribute to adaptation to high altitude, such factors remain largely unverified. Recent advances in high-throughput sequencing have made it feasible to analyze genome-wide patterns of genetic variation in human populations. Since traditionally such studies surveyed only a small fraction of the genome, interpretation of the results was limited. Results We report here the results of the first whole genome resequencing-based analysis identifying genes that likely modulate high altitude adaptation in native Ethiopians residing at 3,500 m above sea level on Bale Plateau or Chennek field in Ethiopia. Using cross-population tests of selection, we identify regions with a significant loss of diversity, indicative of a selective sweep. We focus on a 208 kbp gene-rich region on chromosome 19, which is significant in both of the Ethiopian subpopulations sampled. This region contains eight protein-coding genes and spans 135 SNPs. To elucidate its potential role in hypoxia tolerance, we experimentally tested whether individual genes from the region affect hypoxia tolerance in Drosophila. Three genes significantly impact survival rates in low oxygen: cic, an ortholog of human CIC, Hsl, an ortholog of human LIPE, and Paf-AHα, an ortholog of human PAFAH1B3. Conclusions Our study reveals evolutionarily conserved genes that modulate hypoxia tolerance. In addition, we show that many of our results would likely be unattainable using data from exome sequencing or microarray studies. This highlights the importance of whole genome sequencing for investigating adaptation by natural selection. PMID:24555826

  20. Crystal structure of a dimerization domain of human Caprin-1: insights into the assembly of an evolutionarily conserved ribonucleoprotein complex consisting of Caprin-1, FMRP and G3BP1.

    PubMed

    Wu, Yuhong; Zhu, Jiang; Huang, Xiaolan; Du, Zhihua

    2016-06-01

    Caprin-1 plays roles in many important biological processes, including cellular proliferation, innate immune response, stress response and synaptic plasticity. Caprin-1 has been implicated in several human diseases, including osteosarcoma, breast cancer, viral infection, hearing loss and neurodegenerative disorders. The functions of Caprin-1 depend on its molecular-interaction network. Direct interactions have been established between Caprin-1 and the fragile X mental retardation protein (FMRP), Ras GAP-activating protein-binding protein 1 (G3BP1) and the Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV) core protein. Here, crystal structures of a fragment (residues 132-251) of Caprin-1, which adopts a novel all-α-helical fold and mediates homodimerization through a substantial interface, are reported. Homodimerization creates a large and highly negatively charged concave surface suggestive of a protein-binding groove. The FMRP-interacting sequence motif forms an integral α-helix in the dimeric Caprin-1 structure in such a way that the binding of FMRP would not disrupt the homodimerization of Caprin-1. Based on insights from the structures and existing biochemical data, the existence of an evolutionarily conserved ribonucleoprotein (RNP) complex consisting of Caprin-1, FMRP and G3BP1 is proposed. The JEV core protein may bind Caprin-1 at the negatively charged putative protein-binding groove and an adjacent E-rich sequence to hijack the RNP complex. PMID:27303792

  1. Identification of an evolutionarily conserved domain in human lens epithelium-derived growth factor/transcriptional co-activator p75 (LEDGF/p75) that binds HIV-1 integrase.

    PubMed

    Cherepanov, Peter; Devroe, Eric; Silver, Pamela A; Engelman, Alan

    2004-11-19

    Human lens epithelium-derived growth factor/transcriptional co-activator p75 (LEDGF/p75) protein was recently identified as a binding partner for HIV-1 integrase (IN) in human cells. In this work, we used biochemical and bioinformatic approaches to define the domain organization of LEDGF/p75. Using limited proteolysis and deletion mutagenesis we show that the protein contains a pair of evolutionarily conserved domains, assuming about 35% of its sequence. Whereas the N-terminal PWWP domain had been recognized previously, the second domain is novel. It is comprised of approximately 80 amino acid residues and is both necessary and sufficient for binding to HIV-1 IN. Strikingly, the integrase binding domain (IBD) is not unique to LEDGF/p75, as a second human protein, hepatoma-derived growth factor-related protein 2 (HRP2), contains a homologous sequence. LEDGF/p75 and HRP2 IBDs avidly bound HIV-1 IN in an in vitro GST pull-down assay and each full-length protein potently stimulated HIV-1 IN activity in vitro. LEDGF/p75 and HRP2 are predicted to share a similar domain organization and have an evident evolutionary and likely functional relationship. PMID:15371438

  2. The Spatial-Functional Coupling of Box C/D and C′/D′ RNPs Is an Evolutionarily Conserved Feature of the Eukaryotic Box C/D snoRNP Nucleotide Modification Complex ▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Qu, Guosheng; van Nues, Rob W.; Watkins, Nicholas J.; Maxwell, E. Stuart

    2011-01-01

    Box C/D ribonucleoprotein particles guide the 2′-O-ribose methylation of target nucleotides in both archaeal and eukaryotic RNAs. These complexes contain two functional centers, assembled around the C/D and C′/D′ motifs in the box C/D RNA. The C/D and C′/D′ RNPs of the archaeal snoRNA-like RNP (sRNP) are spatially and functionally coupled. Here, we show that similar coupling also occurs in eukaryotic box C/D snoRNPs. The C/D RNP guided 2′-O-methylation when the C′/D′ motif was either mutated or ablated. In contrast, the C′/D′ RNP was inactive as an independent complex. Additional experiments demonstrated that the internal C′/D′ RNP is spatially coupled to the terminal box C/D complex. Pulldown experiments also indicated that all four core proteins are independently recruited to the box C/D and C′/D′ motifs. Therefore, the spatial-functional coupling of box C/D and C′/D′ RNPs is an evolutionarily conserved feature of both archaeal and eukaryotic box C/D RNP complexes. PMID:21041475

  3. The spatial-functional coupling of box C/D and C'/D' RNPs is an evolutionarily conserved feature of the eukaryotic box C/D snoRNP nucleotide modification complex.

    PubMed

    Qu, Guosheng; van Nues, Rob W; Watkins, Nicholas J; Maxwell, E Stuart

    2011-01-01

    Box C/D ribonucleoprotein particles guide the 2'-O-ribose methylation of target nucleotides in both archaeal and eukaryotic RNAs. These complexes contain two functional centers, assembled around the C/D and C'/D' motifs in the box C/D RNA. The C/D and C'/D' RNPs of the archaeal snoRNA-like RNP (sRNP) are spatially and functionally coupled. Here, we show that similar coupling also occurs in eukaryotic box C/D snoRNPs. The C/D RNP guided 2'-O-methylation when the C'/D' motif was either mutated or ablated. In contrast, the C'/D' RNP was inactive as an independent complex. Additional experiments demonstrated that the internal C'/D' RNP is spatially coupled to the terminal box C/D complex. Pulldown experiments also indicated that all four core proteins are independently recruited to the box C/D and C'/D' motifs. Therefore, the spatial-functional coupling of box C/D and C'/D' RNPs is an evolutionarily conserved feature of both archaeal and eukaryotic box C/D RNP complexes. PMID:21041475

  4. The evolutionarily conserved region of the U snRNA export mediator PHAX is a novel RNA-binding domain that is essential for U snRNA export.

    PubMed Central

    Segref, A; Mattaj, I W; Ohno, M

    2001-01-01

    In metazoa, a subset of spliceosomal U snRNAs are exported from the nucleus after transcription. This export occurs in a large complex containing a U snRNA, the nuclear cap binding complex (CBC), the leucine-rich nuclear export signal receptor CRM1/Xpo1, RanGTP, and the recently identified phosphoprotein PHAX (phosphorylated adaptor for RNA export). Previous results indicated that PHAX made direct contact with RNA, CBC, and Xpo1 in the U snRNA export complex. We have now performed a systematic characterization of the functional domains of PHAX. The most evolutionarily conserved region of PHAX is shown to be a novel RNA-binding domain that is essential for U snRNA export. In addition, PHAX contains two major nuclear localization signals (NLSs) that are required for its recycling to the nucleus after export. The interaction domain of PHAX with CBC is at least partly distinct from the RNA-binding domain and the NLSs. Thus, the different interaction domains of PHAX allow it to act as a scaffold for the assembly of U snRNA export complexes. PMID:11333016

  5. Knockout of the two evolutionarily conserved peroxisomal 3-ketoacyl-CoA thiolases in Arabidopsis recapitulates the abnormal inflorescence meristem 1 phenotype.

    PubMed

    Wiszniewski, Andrew A G; Bussell, John D; Long, Rowena L; Smith, Steven M

    2014-12-01

    A specific function for peroxisomal β-oxidation in inflorescence development in Arabidopsis thaliana is suggested by the mutation of the abnormal inflorescence meristem 1 gene, which encodes one of two peroxisomal multifunctional proteins. Therefore, it should be possible to identify other β-oxidation mutants that recapitulate the aim1 phenotype. Three genes encode peroxisomal 3-ketoacyl-CoA thiolase (KAT) in Arabidopsis. KAT2 and KAT5 are present throughout angiosperms whereas KAT1 is a Brassicaceae-specific duplication of KAT2 expressed at low levels in Arabidopsis. KAT2 plays a dominant role in all known aspects of peroxisomal β-oxidation, including that of fatty acids, pro-auxins, jasmonate precursor oxophytodienoic acid, and trans-cinnamic acid. The functions of KAT1 and KAT5 are unknown. Since KAT5 is conserved throughout vascular plants and expressed strongly in flowers, kat2 kat5 double mutants were generated. These were slow growing, had abnormally branched inflorescences, and ectopic organ growth. They made viable pollen, but produced no seed indicating that infertility was due to defective gynaecium function. These phenotypes are strikingly similar to those of aim1. KAT5 in the Brassicaceae encodes both cytosolic and peroxisomal proteins and kat2 kat5 defects could be complemented by the re-introduction of peroxisomal (but not cytosolic) KAT5. It is concluded that peroxisomal KAT2 and KAT5 have partially redundant functions and operate downstream of AIM1 to provide β-oxidation functions essential for inflorescence development and fertility. PMID:25297549

  6. The Evolutionarily Conserved Tre2/Bub2/Cdc16 (TBC), Lysin Motif (LysM), Domain Catalytic (TLDc) Domain Is Neuroprotective against Oxidative Stress*

    PubMed Central

    Finelli, Mattéa J.; Sanchez-Pulido, Luis; Liu, Kevin X; Davies, Kay E.; Oliver, Peter L.

    2016-01-01

    Oxidative stress is a pathological feature of many neurological disorders; therefore, utilizing proteins that are protective against such cellular insults is a potentially valuable therapeutic approach. Oxidation resistance 1 (OXR1) has been shown previously to be critical for oxidative stress resistance in neuronal cells; deletion of this gene causes neurodegeneration in mice, yet conversely, overexpression of OXR1 is protective in cellular and mouse models of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. However, the molecular mechanisms involved are unclear. OXR1 contains the Tre2/Bub2/Cdc16 (TBC), lysin motif (LysM), domain catalytic (TLDc) domain, a motif present in a family of proteins including TBC1 domain family member 24 (TBC1D24), a protein mutated in a range of disorders characterized by seizures, hearing loss, and neurodegeneration. The TLDc domain is highly conserved across species, although the structure-function relationship is unknown. To understand the role of this domain in the stress response, we carried out systematic analysis of all mammalian TLDc domain-containing proteins, investigating their expression and neuroprotective properties in parallel. In addition, we performed a detailed structural and functional study of this domain in which we identified key residues required for its activity. Finally, we present a new mouse insertional mutant of Oxr1, confirming that specific disruption of the TLDc domain in vivo is sufficient to cause neurodegeneration. Our data demonstrate that the integrity of the TLDc domain is essential for conferring neuroprotection, an important step in understanding the functional significance of all TLDc domain-containing proteins in the cellular stress response and disease. PMID:26668325

  7. Structural and Biophysical Analysis of BST-2/Tetherin Ectodomains Reveals an Evolutionary Conserved Design to Inhibit Virus Release

    SciTech Connect

    Swiecki, M.; Allaire, M.; Scheaffer, S.; Fremont, D.H.; et.al.

    2011-01-28

    BST-2/tetherin is a host antiviral molecule that functions to potently inhibit the release of enveloped viruses from infected cells. In return, viruses have evolved antagonists to this activity. BST-2 traps budding virions by using two separate membrane-anchoring regions that simultaneously incorporate into the host and viral membranes. Here, we detailed the structural and biophysical properties of the full-length BST-2 ectodomain, which spans the two membrane anchors. The 1.6-{angstrom} crystal structure of the complete mouse BST-2 ectodomain reveals an {approx}145-{angstrom} parallel dimer in an extended {alpha}-helix conformation that predominantly forms a coiled coil bridged by three intermolecular disulfides that are required for stability. Sequence analysis in the context of the structure revealed an evolutionarily conserved design that destabilizes the coiled coil, resulting in a labile superstructure, as evidenced by solution x-ray scattering displaying bent conformations spanning 150 and 180 {angstrom} for the mouse and human BST-2 ectodomains, respectively. Additionally, crystal packing analysis revealed possible curvature-sensing tetrameric structures that may aid in proper placement of BST-2 during the genesis of viral progeny. Overall, this extended coiled-coil structure with inherent plasticity is undoubtedly necessary to accommodate the dynamics of viral budding while ensuring separation of the anchors.

  8. High-Throughput Sequencing Reveals Diverse Sets of Conserved, Nonconserved, and Species-Specific miRNAs in Jute.

    PubMed

    Islam, Md Tariqul; Ferdous, Ahlan Sabah; Najnin, Rifat Ara; Sarker, Suprovath Kumar; Khan, Haseena

    2015-01-01

    MicroRNAs play a pivotal role in regulating a broad range of biological processes, acting by cleaving mRNAs or by translational repression. A group of plant microRNAs are evolutionarily conserved; however, others are expressed in a species-specific manner. Jute is an agroeconomically important fibre crop; nonetheless, no practical information is available for microRNAs in jute to date. In this study, Illumina sequencing revealed a total of 227 known microRNAs and 17 potential novel microRNA candidates in jute, of which 164 belong to 23 conserved families and the remaining 63 belong to 58 nonconserved families. Among a total of 81 identified microRNA families, 116 potential target genes were predicted for 39 families and 11 targets were predicted for 4 among the 17 identified novel microRNAs. For understanding better the functions of microRNAs, target genes were analyzed by Gene Ontology and their pathways illustrated by KEGG pathway analyses. The presence of microRNAs identified in jute was validated by stem-loop RT-PCR followed by end point PCR and qPCR for randomly selected 20 known and novel microRNAs. This study exhaustively identifies microRNAs and their target genes in jute which will ultimately pave the way for understanding their role in this crop and other crops. PMID:25861616

  9. High-Throughput Sequencing Reveals Diverse Sets of Conserved, Nonconserved, and Species-Specific miRNAs in Jute

    PubMed Central

    Islam, Md. Tariqul; Ferdous, Ahlan Sabah; Najnin, Rifat Ara; Sarker, Suprovath Kumar; Khan, Haseena

    2015-01-01

    MicroRNAs play a pivotal role in regulating a broad range of biological processes, acting by cleaving mRNAs or by translational repression. A group of plant microRNAs are evolutionarily conserved; however, others are expressed in a species-specific manner. Jute is an agroeconomically important fibre crop; nonetheless, no practical information is available for microRNAs in jute to date. In this study, Illumina sequencing revealed a total of 227 known microRNAs and 17 potential novel microRNA candidates in jute, of which 164 belong to 23 conserved families and the remaining 63 belong to 58 nonconserved families. Among a total of 81 identified microRNA families, 116 potential target genes were predicted for 39 families and 11 targets were predicted for 4 among the 17 identified novel microRNAs. For understanding better the functions of microRNAs, target genes were analyzed by Gene Ontology and their pathways illustrated by KEGG pathway analyses. The presence of microRNAs identified in jute was validated by stem-loop RT-PCR followed by end point PCR and qPCR for randomly selected 20 known and novel microRNAs. This study exhaustively identifies microRNAs and their target genes in jute which will ultimately pave the way for understanding their role in this crop and other crops. PMID:25861616

  10. Functional Constraint Profiling of a Viral Protein Reveals Discordance of Evolutionary Conservation and Functionality

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Nicholas C.; Olson, C. Anders; Du, Yushen; Le, Shuai; Tran, Kevin; Remenyi, Roland; Gong, Danyang; Al-Mawsawi, Laith Q.; Qi, Hangfei; Wu, Ting-Ting; Sun, Ren

    2015-01-01

    Viruses often encode proteins with multiple functions due to their compact genomes. Existing approaches to identify functional residues largely rely on sequence conservation analysis. Inferring functional residues from sequence conservation can produce false positives, in which the conserved residues are functionally silent, or false negatives, where functional residues are not identified since they are species-specific and therefore non-conserved. Furthermore, the tedious process of constructing and analyzing individual mutations limits the number of residues that can be examined in a single study. Here, we developed a systematic approach to identify the functional residues of a viral protein by coupling experimental fitness profiling with protein stability prediction using the influenza virus polymerase PA subunit as the target protein. We identified a significant number of functional residues that were influenza type-specific and were evolutionarily non-conserved among different influenza types. Our results indicate that type-specific functional residues are prevalent and may not otherwise be identified by sequence conservation analysis alone. More importantly, this technique can be adapted to any viral (and potentially non-viral) protein where structural information is available. PMID:26132554

  11. β-adrenergic signaling regulates evolutionarily derived sleep loss in the Mexican cavefish.

    PubMed

    Duboué, Erik R; Borowsky, Richard L; Keene, Alex C

    2012-01-01

    Sleep is a fundamental behavior exhibited almost universally throughout the animal kingdom. The required amount and circadian timing of sleep differs greatly between species in accordance with habitats and evolutionary history. The Mexican blind cavefish, Astyanax mexicanus, is a model organism for the study of adaptive morphological and behavioral traits. In addition to loss of eyes and pigmentation, cave populations of A. mexicanus exhibit evolutionarily derived sleep loss and increased vibration attraction behavior, presumably to cope with a nutrient-poor environment. Understanding the neural mechanisms of evolutionarily derived sleep loss in this system may reveal critical insights into the regulation of sleep in vertebrates. Here we report that blockade of β-adrenergic receptors with propranolol rescues the decreased-sleep phenotype of cavefish. This effect was not seen with α-adrenergic antagonists. Treatment with selective β1-, β2-, and β3-antagonists revealed that the increased sleep observed with propranolol could partially be explained via the β1-adrenergic system. Morphological analysis of catecholamine circuitry revealed conservation of gross catecholaminergic neuroanatomy between surface and cave morphs. Taken together, these findings suggest that evolutionarily derived changes in adrenergic signaling underlie the reduced sleep of cave populations. PMID:22922609

  12. A novel fragile X syndrome mutation reveals a conserved role for the carboxy-terminus in FMRP localization and function

    PubMed Central

    Okray, Zeynep; de Esch, Celine EF; Van Esch, Hilde; Devriendt, Koen; Claeys, Annelies; Yan, Jiekun; Verbeeck, Jelle; Froyen, Guy; Willemsen, Rob; de Vrij, Femke MS; Hassan, Bassem A

    2015-01-01

    Loss of function of the FMR1 gene leads to fragile X syndrome (FXS), the most common form of intellectual disability. The loss of FMR1 function is usually caused by epigenetic silencing of the FMR1 promoter leading to expansion and subsequent methylation of a CGG repeat in the 5′ untranslated region. Very few coding sequence variations have been experimentally characterized and shown to be causal to the disease. Here, we describe a novel FMR1 mutation and reveal an unexpected nuclear export function for the C-terminus of FMRP. We screened a cohort of patients with typical FXS symptoms who tested negative for CGG repeat expansion in the FMR1 locus. In one patient, we identified a guanine insertion in FMR1 exon 15. This mutation alters the open reading frame creating a short novel C-terminal sequence, followed by a stop codon. We find that this novel peptide encodes a functional nuclear localization signal (NLS) targeting the patient FMRP to the nucleolus in human cells. We also reveal an evolutionarily conserved nuclear export function associated with the endogenous C-terminus of FMRP. In vivo analyses in Drosophila demonstrate that a patient-mimetic mutation alters the localization and function of Dfmrp in neurons, leading to neomorphic neuronal phenotypes. PMID:25693964

  13. Thioredoxins in evolutionarily primitive organisms

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Buchanan, B. B.

    1986-01-01

    Thioredoxins are low molecular weight redox proteins, alternating between the S-S (oxidized) and SH (reduced) states, that function in a number of biochemical processes, including DNA synthesis, DNA replication, and enzyme regulation. Until recently, reduced ferredoxin was known to serve as the source of reducing power for the reduction of thioredoxins only in oxygenic photosynthetic cells. In all other organisms, the source of hydrogen (electrons) for thioredoxin reduction was considered to be NADPH. It was found that Clostridium pasteurianum, an anaerobic organism normally living in the soil unexposed to light, resembles photosynthetic cells in using ferredoxin for the reduction of thioredoxin. The results reveal the existence of a pathway in which ferredoxin, provides the reducing power for the reduction of thioredoxin via the flavoprotein enzyme, ferredoxinthioredoxin reductase. In related studies, it was found that Chromatium vinosum, an anaerobic photosynthetic purple sulfur bacterium, resembles evolutionarily more advanced micro-organisms in having an NADP-thioredoxin system composed of a single thioredoxin which is reduced by NADPH via NADP-thioredoxin reductase. The adoption of the NADP-thioredoxin system by Chromatium seems appropriate in view of evidence tha the organi sm utilizes ATP-driven reverse electron transport. Finally, results of research directed towards the identification of target enzymes of the ferredoxin/thioredoxin system in a cyanobacterium (Nostoc muscorum), show that thioredoxin-linked photosynthetic enzymes of cyanobateria are similar to those of chloroplasts. It now seems that the ferredoxin/thioredoxin system functions in regulating CO2 assimilation via the reductive pentose phosphate cycle in oxygenic but not anoxygenic photosynthetic cells.

  14. An Evolutionarily Informed Education Science

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Geary, David C.

    2008-01-01

    Schools are a central interface between evolution and culture. They are the contexts in which children learn the evolutionarily novel abilities and knowledge needed to function as adults in modern societies. Evolutionary educational psychology is the study of how an evolved bias in children's learning and motivational systems influences their…

  15. Advancing Eucalyptus Genomics: Cytogenomics Reveals Conservation of Eucalyptus Genomes.

    PubMed

    Ribeiro, Teresa; Barrela, Ricardo M; Bergès, Hélène; Marques, Cristina; Loureiro, João; Morais-Cecílio, Leonor; Paiva, Jorge A P

    2016-01-01

    The genus Eucalyptus encloses several species with high ecological and economic value, being the subgenus Symphyomyrtus one of the most important. Species such as E. grandis and E. globulus are well characterized at the molecular level but knowledge regarding genome and chromosome organization is very scarce. Here we characterized and compared the karyotypes of three economically important species, E. grandis, E. globulus, and E. calmadulensis, and three with ecological relevance, E. pulverulenta, E. cornuta, and E. occidentalis, through an integrative approach including genome size estimation, fluorochrome banding, rDNA FISH, and BAC landing comprising genes involved in lignin biosynthesis. All karyotypes show a high degree of conservation with pericentromeric 35S and 5S rDNA loci in the first and third pairs, respectively. GC-rich heterochromatin was restricted to the 35S rDNA locus while the AT-rich heterochromatin pattern was species-specific. The slight differences in karyotype formulas and distribution of AT-rich heterochromatin, along with genome sizes estimations, support the idea of Eucalyptus genome evolution by local expansions of heterochromatin clusters. The unusual co-localization of both rDNA with AT-rich heterochromatin was attributed mainly to the presence of silent transposable elements in those loci. The cinnamoyl CoA reductase gene (CCR1) previously assessed to linkage group 10 (LG10) was clearly localized distally at the long arm of chromosome 9 establishing an unexpected correlation between the cytogenetic chromosome 9 and the LG10. Our work is novel and contributes to the understanding of Eucalyptus genome organization which is essential to develop successful advanced breeding strategies for this genus. PMID:27148332

  16. Advancing Eucalyptus Genomics: Cytogenomics Reveals Conservation of Eucalyptus Genomes

    PubMed Central

    Ribeiro, Teresa; Barrela, Ricardo M.; Bergès, Hélène; Marques, Cristina; Loureiro, João; Morais-Cecílio, Leonor; Paiva, Jorge A. P.

    2016-01-01

    The genus Eucalyptus encloses several species with high ecological and economic value, being the subgenus Symphyomyrtus one of the most important. Species such as E. grandis and E. globulus are well characterized at the molecular level but knowledge regarding genome and chromosome organization is very scarce. Here we characterized and compared the karyotypes of three economically important species, E. grandis, E. globulus, and E. calmadulensis, and three with ecological relevance, E. pulverulenta, E. cornuta, and E. occidentalis, through an integrative approach including genome size estimation, fluorochrome banding, rDNA FISH, and BAC landing comprising genes involved in lignin biosynthesis. All karyotypes show a high degree of conservation with pericentromeric 35S and 5S rDNA loci in the first and third pairs, respectively. GC-rich heterochromatin was restricted to the 35S rDNA locus while the AT-rich heterochromatin pattern was species-specific. The slight differences in karyotype formulas and distribution of AT-rich heterochromatin, along with genome sizes estimations, support the idea of Eucalyptus genome evolution by local expansions of heterochromatin clusters. The unusual co-localization of both rDNA with AT-rich heterochromatin was attributed mainly to the presence of silent transposable elements in those loci. The cinnamoyl CoA reductase gene (CCR1) previously assessed to linkage group 10 (LG10) was clearly localized distally at the long arm of chromosome 9 establishing an unexpected correlation between the cytogenetic chromosome 9 and the LG10. Our work is novel and contributes to the understanding of Eucalyptus genome organization which is essential to develop successful advanced breeding strategies for this genus. PMID:27148332

  17. Identification of essential Alphaproteobacterial genes reveals operational variability in conserved developmental and cell cycle systems

    PubMed Central

    Curtis, Patrick D.; Brun, Yves V.

    2014-01-01

    Summary The cell cycle of Caulobacter crescentus is controlled by a complex signaling network that coordinates events. Genome sequencing has revealed many C. crescentus cell cycle genes are conserved in other Alphaproteobacteria, but it is not clear to what extent their function is conserved. As many cell cycle regulatory genes are essential in C. crescentus, the essential genes of two Alphaproteobacteria, Agrobacterium tumefaciens (Rhizobiales) and Brevundimonas subvibrioides (Caulobacterales), were elucidated to identify changes in cell cycle protein function over different phylogenetic distances as demonstrated by changes in essentiality. The results show the majority of conserved essential genes are involved in critical cell cycle processes. Changes in component essentiality reflect major changes in lifestyle, such as divisome components in A. tumefaciens resulting from that organism’s different growth pattern. Larger variability of essentiality was observed in cell cycle regulators, suggesting regulatory mechanisms are more customizable than the processes they regulate. Examples include variability in the essentiality of divJ and divK spatial cell cycle regulators, and non-essentiality of the highly conserved and usually essential DNA methyltransferase CcrM. These results show that while essential cell functions are conserved across varying genetic distance, much of a given organism’s essential gene pool is specific to that organism. PMID:24975755

  18. Comparative developmental analysis of Drosophila and Tribolium reveals conserved and diverged roles of abrupt in insect wing evolution.

    PubMed

    Ravisankar, Padmapriyadarshini; Lai, Yi-Ting; Sambrani, Nagraj; Tomoyasu, Yoshinori

    2016-01-15

    Morphological innovation is a fundamental process in evolution, yet its molecular basis is still elusive. Acquisition of elytra, highly modified beetle forewings, is an important innovation that has driven the successful radiation of beetles. Our RNAi screening for candidate genes has identified abrupt (ab) as a potential key player in elytron evolution. In this study, we performed a series of RNA interference (RNAi) experiments in both Tribolium and Drosophila to understand the contributions of ab to the evolution of beetle elytra. We found that (i) ab is essential for proper wing vein patterning both in Tribolium and Drosophila, (ii) ab has gained a novel function in determining the unique elytron shape in the beetle lineage, (iii) unlike Hippo and Insulin, other shape determining pathways, the shape determining function of ab is specific to the elytron and not required in the hindwing, (iv) ab has a previously undescribed role in the Notch signal-associated wing formation processes, which appears to be conserved between beetles and flies. These data suggest that ab has gained a new function during elytron evolution in beetles without compromising the conserved wing-related functions. Gaining a new function without losing evolutionarily conserved functions may be a key theme in the evolution of morphologically novel structures. PMID:26687509

  19. Epigenetic conservation at gene regulatory elements revealed by non-methylated DNA profiling in seven vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Long, Hannah K; Sims, David; Heger, Andreas; Blackledge, Neil P; Kutter, Claudia; Wright, Megan L; Grützner, Frank; Odom, Duncan T; Patient, Roger; Ponting, Chris P; Klose, Robert J

    2013-01-01

    Two-thirds of gene promoters in mammals are associated with regions of non-methylated DNA, called CpG islands (CGIs), which counteract the repressive effects of DNA methylation on chromatin. In cold-blooded vertebrates, computational CGI predictions often reside away from gene promoters, suggesting a major divergence in gene promoter architecture across vertebrates. By experimentally identifying non-methylated DNA in the genomes of seven diverse vertebrates, we instead reveal that non-methylated islands (NMIs) of DNA are a central feature of vertebrate gene promoters. Furthermore, NMIs are present at orthologous genes across vast evolutionary distances, revealing a surprising level of conservation in this epigenetic feature. By profiling NMIs in different tissues and developmental stages we uncover a unifying set of features that are central to the function of NMIs in vertebrates. Together these findings demonstrate an ancient logic for NMI usage at gene promoters and reveal an unprecedented level of epigenetic conservation across vertebrate evolution. DOI:http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.00348.001. PMID:23467541

  20. Cross-species transcriptional network analysis reveals conservation and variation in response to metal stress in cyanobacteria

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background As one of the most dominant bacterial groups on Earth, cyanobacteria play a pivotal role in the global carbon cycling and the Earth atmosphere composition. Understanding their molecular responses to environmental perturbations has important scientific and environmental values. Since important biological processes or networks are often evolutionarily conserved, the cross-species transcriptional network analysis offers a useful strategy to decipher conserved and species-specific transcriptional mechanisms that cells utilize to deal with various biotic and abiotic disturbances, and it will eventually lead to a better understanding of associated adaptation and regulatory networks. Results In this study, the Weighted Gene Co-expression Network Analysis (WGCNA) approach was used to establish transcriptional networks for four important cyanobacteria species under metal stress, including iron depletion and high copper conditions. Cross-species network comparison led to discovery of several core response modules and genes possibly essential to metal stress, as well as species-specific hub genes for metal stresses in different cyanobacteria species, shedding light on survival strategies of cyanobacteria responding to different environmental perturbations. Conclusions The WGCNA analysis demonstrated that the application of cross-species transcriptional network analysis will lead to novel insights to molecular response to environmental changes which will otherwise not be achieved by analyzing data from a single species. PMID:23421563

  1. Comparison of C. elegans and C. briggsae Genome Sequences Reveals Extensive Conservation of Chromosome Organization and Synteny

    PubMed Central

    Hillier, LaDeana W; Miller, Raymond D; Baird, Scott E; Chinwalla, Asif; Fulton, Lucinda A; Koboldt, Daniel C; Waterston, Robert H

    2007-01-01

    To determine whether the distinctive features of Caenorhabditis elegans chromosomal organization are shared with the C. briggsae genome, we constructed a single nucleotide polymorphism–based genetic map to order and orient the whole genome shotgun assembly along the six C. briggsae chromosomes. Although these species are of the same genus, their most recent common ancestor existed 80–110 million years ago, and thus they are more evolutionarily distant than, for example, human and mouse. We found that, like C. elegans chromosomes, C. briggsae chromosomes exhibit high levels of recombination on the arms along with higher repeat density, a higher fraction of intronic sequence, and a lower fraction of exonic sequence compared with chromosome centers. Despite extensive intrachromosomal rearrangements, 1:1 orthologs tend to remain in the same region of the chromosome, and colinear blocks of orthologs tend to be longer in chromosome centers compared with arms. More strikingly, the two species show an almost complete conservation of synteny, with 1:1 orthologs present on a single chromosome in one species also found on a single chromosome in the other. The conservation of both chromosomal organization and synteny between these two distantly related species suggests roles for chromosome organization in the fitness of an organism that are only poorly understood presently. PMID:17608563

  2. Making teeth to order: conserved genes reveal an ancient molecular pattern in paddlefish (Actinopterygii)

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Moya M.; Johanson, Zerina; Butts, Thomas; Ericsson, Rolf; Modrell, Melinda; Tulenko, Frank J.; Davis, Marcus C.; Fraser, Gareth J.

    2015-01-01

    Ray-finned fishes (Actinopterygii) are the dominant vertebrate group today (+30 000 species, predominantly teleosts), with great morphological diversity, including their dentitions. How dental morphological variation evolved is best addressed by considering a range of taxa across actinopterygian phylogeny; here we examine the dentition of Polyodon spathula (American paddlefish), assigned to the basal group Acipenseriformes. Although teeth are present and functional in young individuals of Polyodon, they are completely absent in adults. Our current understanding of developmental genes operating in the dentition is primarily restricted to teleosts; we show that shh and bmp4, as highly conserved epithelial and mesenchymal genes for gnathostome tooth development, are similarly expressed at Polyodon tooth loci, thus extending this conserved developmental pattern within the Actinopterygii. These genes map spatio-temporal tooth initiation in Polyodon larvae and provide new data in both oral and pharyngeal tooth sites. Variation in cellular intensity of shh maps timing of tooth morphogenesis, revealing a second odontogenic wave as alternate sites within tooth rows, a dental pattern also present in more derived actinopterygians. Developmental timing for each tooth field in Polyodon follows a gradient, from rostral to caudal and ventral to dorsal, repeated during subsequent loss of teeth. The transitory Polyodon dentition is modified by cessation of tooth addition and loss. As such, Polyodon represents a basal actinopterygian model for the evolution of developmental novelty: initial conservation, followed by tooth loss, accommodating the adult trophic modification to filter-feeding. PMID:25788604

  3. Evolution of TNF-induced apoptosis reveals 550 My of functional conservation.

    PubMed

    Quistad, Steven D; Stotland, Aleksandr; Barott, Katie L; Smurthwaite, Cameron A; Hilton, Brett Jameson; Grasis, Juris A; Wolkowicz, Roland; Rohwer, Forest L

    2014-07-01

    The Precambrian explosion led to the rapid appearance of most major animal phyla alive today. It has been argued that the complexity of life has steadily increased since that event. Here we challenge this hypothesis through the characterization of apoptosis in reef-building corals, representatives of some of the earliest animals. Bioinformatic analysis reveals that all of the major components of the death receptor pathway are present in coral with high-predicted structural conservation with Homo sapiens. The TNF receptor-ligand superfamilies (TNFRSF/TNFSF) are central mediators of the death receptor pathway, and the predicted proteome of Acropora digitifera contains more putative coral TNFRSF members than any organism described thus far, including humans. This high abundance of TNFRSF members, as well as the predicted structural conservation of other death receptor signaling proteins, led us to wonder what would happen if corals were exposed to a member of the human TNFSF (HuTNFα). HuTNFα was found to bind directly to coral cells, increase caspase activity, cause apoptotic blebbing and cell death, and finally induce coral bleaching. Next, immortalized human T cells (Jurkats) expressing a functional death receptor pathway (WT) and a corresponding Fas-associated death domain protein (FADD) KO cell line were exposed to a coral TNFSF member (AdTNF1) identified and purified here. AdTNF1 treatment resulted in significantly higher cell death (P < 0.0001) in WT Jurkats compared with the corresponding FADD KO, demonstrating that coral AdTNF1 activates the H. sapiens death receptor pathway. Taken together, these data show remarkable conservation of the TNF-induced apoptotic response representing 550 My of functional conservation. PMID:24927546

  4. Comparison of a Modern and Fossil Pithovirus Reveals Its Genetic Conservation and Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Levasseur, Anthony; Andreani, Julien; Delerce, Jeremy; Bou Khalil, Jacques; Robert, Catherine; La Scola, Bernard; Raoult, Didier

    2016-01-01

    Most theories on viral evolution are speculative and lack fossil comparison. Here, we isolated a modern Pithovirus-like virus from sewage samples. This giant virus, named Pithovirus massiliensis, was compared with its prehistoric counterpart, Pithovirus sibericum, found in Siberian permafrost. Our analysis revealed near-complete gene repertoire conservation, including horizontal gene transfer and ORFans. Furthermore, all orthologous genes evolved under strong purifying selection with a non-synonymous and synonymous ratio in the same range as the ratio found in the prokaryotic world. The comparison between fossil and modern Pithovirus species provided an estimation of the cadence of the molecular clock, reaching up to 3 × 10−6 mutations/site/year. In addition, the strict conservation of HGTs and ORFans in P. massiliensis revealed the stable genetic mosaicism in giant viruses and excludes the concept of a bag of genes. The genetic stability for 30,000 years of P. massiliensis demonstrates that giant viruses evolve similarly to prokaryotes by classical mechanisms of evolution, including selection and fixation of genes, followed by selective constraints. PMID:27389688

  5. Cellular analysis of cleavage-stage chick embryos reveals hidden conservation in vertebrate early development

    PubMed Central

    Nagai, Hiroki; Sezaki, Maiko; Kakiguchi, Kisa; Nakaya, Yukiko; Lee, Hyung Chul; Ladher, Raj; Sasanami, Tomohiro; Han, Jae Yong; Yonemura, Shigenobu; Sheng, Guojun

    2015-01-01

    Birds and mammals, phylogenetically close amniotes with similar post-gastrula development, exhibit little conservation in their post-fertilization cleavage patterns. Data from the mouse suggest that cellular morphogenesis and molecular signaling at the cleavage stage play important roles in lineage specification at later (blastula and gastrula) stages. Very little is known, however, about cleavage-stage chick embryos, owing to their poor accessibility. This period of chick development takes place before egg-laying and encompasses several fundamental processes of avian embryology, including zygotic gene activation (ZGA) and blastoderm cell-layer increase. We have carried out morphological and cellular analyses of cleavage-stage chick embryos covering the first half of pre-ovipositional development, from Eyal-Giladi and Kochav stage (EGK-) I to EGK-V. Scanning electron microscopy revealed remarkable subcellular details of blastomere cellularization and subgerminal cavity formation. Phosphorylated RNA polymerase II immunostaining showed that ZGA in the chick starts at early EGK-III during the 7th to 8th nuclear division cycle, comparable with the time reported for other yolk-rich vertebrates (e.g. zebrafish and Xenopus). The increase in the number of cell layers after EGK-III is not a direct consequence of oriented cell division. Finally, we present evidence that, as in the zebrafish embryo, a yolk syncytial layer is formed in the avian embryo after EGK-V. Our data suggest that several fundamental features of cleavage-stage development in birds resemble those in yolk-rich anamniote species, revealing conservation in vertebrate early development. Whether this conservation lends morphogenetic support to the anamniote-to-amniote transition in evolution or reflects developmental plasticity in convergent evolution awaits further investigation. PMID:25742796

  6. Cellular analysis of cleavage-stage chick embryos reveals hidden conservation in vertebrate early development.

    PubMed

    Nagai, Hiroki; Sezaki, Maiko; Kakiguchi, Kisa; Nakaya, Yukiko; Lee, Hyung Chul; Ladher, Raj; Sasanami, Tomohiro; Han, Jae Yong; Yonemura, Shigenobu; Sheng, Guojun

    2015-04-01

    Birds and mammals, phylogenetically close amniotes with similar post-gastrula development, exhibit little conservation in their post-fertilization cleavage patterns. Data from the mouse suggest that cellular morphogenesis and molecular signaling at the cleavage stage play important roles in lineage specification at later (blastula and gastrula) stages. Very little is known, however, about cleavage-stage chick embryos, owing to their poor accessibility. This period of chick development takes place before egg-laying and encompasses several fundamental processes of avian embryology, including zygotic gene activation (ZGA) and blastoderm cell-layer increase. We have carried out morphological and cellular analyses of cleavage-stage chick embryos covering the first half of pre-ovipositional development, from Eyal-Giladi and Kochav stage (EGK-) I to EGK-V. Scanning electron microscopy revealed remarkable subcellular details of blastomere cellularization and subgerminal cavity formation. Phosphorylated RNA polymerase II immunostaining showed that ZGA in the chick starts at early EGK-III during the 7th to 8th nuclear division cycle, comparable with the time reported for other yolk-rich vertebrates (e.g. zebrafish and Xenopus). The increase in the number of cell layers after EGK-III is not a direct consequence of oriented cell division. Finally, we present evidence that, as in the zebrafish embryo, a yolk syncytial layer is formed in the avian embryo after EGK-V. Our data suggest that several fundamental features of cleavage-stage development in birds resemble those in yolk-rich anamniote species, revealing conservation in vertebrate early development. Whether this conservation lends morphogenetic support to the anamniote-to-amniote transition in evolution or reflects developmental plasticity in convergent evolution awaits further investigation. PMID:25742796

  7. An evolutionary analysis of flightin reveals a conserved motif unique and widespread in Pancrustacea.

    PubMed

    Soto-Adames, Felipe N; Alvarez-Ortiz, Pedro; Vigoreaux, Jim O

    2014-01-01

    Flightin is a thick filament protein that in Drosophila melanogaster is uniquely expressed in the asynchronous, indirect flight muscles (IFM). Flightin is required for the structure and function of the IFM and is indispensable for flight in Drosophila. Given the importance of flight acquisition in the evolutionary history of insects, here we study the phylogeny and distribution of flightin. Flightin was identified in 69 species of hexapods in classes Collembola (springtails), Protura, Diplura, and insect orders Thysanura (silverfish), Dictyoptera (roaches), Orthoptera (grasshoppers), Pthiraptera (lice), Hemiptera (true bugs), Coleoptera (beetles), Neuroptera (green lacewing), Hymenoptera (bees, ants, and wasps), Lepidoptera (moths), and Diptera (flies and mosquitoes). Flightin was also found in 14 species of crustaceans in orders Anostraca (water flea), Cladocera (brine shrimp), Isopoda (pill bugs), Amphipoda (scuds, sideswimmers), and Decapoda (lobsters, crabs, and shrimps). Flightin was not identified in representatives of chelicerates, myriapods, or any species outside Pancrustacea (Tetraconata, sensu Dohle). Alignment of amino acid sequences revealed a conserved region of 52 amino acids, referred herein as WYR, that is bound by strictly conserved tryptophan (W) and arginine (R) and an intervening sequence with a high content of tyrosines (Y). This motif has no homologs in GenBank or PROSITE and is unique to flightin and paraflightin, a putative flightin paralog identified in decapods. A third motif of unclear affinities to pancrustacean WYR was observed in chelicerates. Phylogenetic analysis of amino acid sequences of the conserved motif suggests that paraflightin originated before the divergence of amphipods, isopods, and decapods. We conclude that flightin originated de novo in the ancestor of Pancrustacea > 500 MYA, well before the divergence of insects (~400 MYA) and the origin of flight (~325 MYA), and that its IFM-specific function in Drosophila is a more

  8. Molecular Characterization of the 14-3-3 Gene Family in Brachypodium distachyon L. Reveals High Evolutionary Conservation and Diverse Responses to Abiotic Stresses

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Hui; Xu, Yuxing; Yuan, Linlin; Bian, Yanwei; Wang, Lihui; Zhen, Shoumin; Hu, Yingkao; Yan, Yueming

    2016-01-01

    The 14-3-3 gene family identified in all eukaryotic organisms is involved in a wide range of biological processes, particularly in resistance to various abiotic stresses. Here, we performed the first comprehensive study on the molecular characterization, phylogenetics, and responses to various abiotic stresses of the 14-3-3 gene family in Brachypodium distachyon L. A total of seven 14-3-3 genes from B. distachyon and 120 from five main lineages among 12 species were identified, which were divided into five well-conserved subfamilies. The molecular structure analysis showed that the plant 14-3-3 gene family is highly evolutionarily conserved, although certain divergence had occurred in different subfamilies. The duplication event investigation revealed that segmental duplication seemed to be the predominant form by which the 14-3-3 gene family had expanded. Moreover, seven critical amino acids were detected, which may contribute to functional divergence. Expression profiling analysis showed that BdGF14 genes were abundantly expressed in the roots, but showed low expression in the meristems. All seven BdGF14 genes showed significant expression changes under various abiotic stresses, including heavy metal, phytohormone, osmotic, and temperature stresses, which might play important roles in responses to multiple abiotic stresses mainly through participating in ABA-dependent signaling and reactive oxygen species-mediated MAPK cascade signaling pathways. In particular, BdGF14 genes generally showed upregulated expression in response to multiple stresses of high temperature, heavy metal, abscisic acid (ABA), and salicylic acid (SA), but downregulated expression under H2O2, NaCl, and polyethylene glycol (PEG) stresses. Meanwhile, dynamic transcriptional expression analysis of BdGF14 genes under longer treatments with heavy metals (Cd2+, Cr3+, Cu2+, and Zn2+) and phytohormone (ABA) and recovery revealed two main expression trends in both roots and leaves: up-down and up

  9. Proteome Mapping of Adult Zebrafish Marrow Neutrophils Reveals Partial Cross Species Conservation to Human Peripheral Neutrophils

    PubMed Central

    Singh, Sachin Kumar; Sethi, Sachin; Aravamudhan, Sriram; Krüger, Marcus; Grabher, Clemens

    2013-01-01

    Neutrophil granulocytes are pivotal cells within the first line of host defense of the innate immune system. In this study, we have used a gel-based LC-MS/MS approach to explore the proteome of primary marrow neutrophils from adult zebrafish. The identified proteins originated from all major cellular compartments. Gene ontology analysis revealed significant association of proteins with different immune-related network and pathway maps. 75% of proteins identified in neutrophils were identified in neutrophils only when compared to neutrophil-free brain tissue. Moreover, cross-species comparison with human peripheral blood neutrophils showed partial conservation of immune-related proteins between human and zebrafish. This study provides the first zebrafish neutrophil proteome and may serve as a valuable resource for an understanding of neutrophil biology and innate immunity. PMID:24019943

  10. Role of the evolutionarily conserved starvation response in anorexia nervosa.

    PubMed

    Dwyer, D S; Horton, R Y; Aamodt, E J

    2011-06-01

    This review will summarize recent findings concerning the biological regulation of starvation as it relates to anorexia nervosa (AN), a serious eating disorder that mainly affects female adolescents and young adults. AN is generally viewed as a psychosomatic disorder mediated by obsessive concerns about weight, perfectionism and an overwhelming desire to be thin. By contrast, the thesis that will be developed here is that, AN is primarily a metabolic disorder caused by defective regulation of the starvation response, which leads to ambivalence towards food, decreased food consumption and characteristic psychopathology. We will trace the starvation response from yeast to man and describe the central role of insulin (and insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1))/Akt/ F-box transcription factor (FOXO) signaling in this response. Akt is a serine/threonine kinase downstream of the insulin and IGF-1 receptors, whereas FOXO refers to the subfamily of Forkhead box O transcription factors, which are regulated by Akt. We will also discuss how initial bouts of caloric restriction may alter the production of neurotransmitters that regulate appetite and food-seeking behavior and thus, set in motion a vicious cycle. Finally, an integrated approach to treatment will be outlined that addresses the biological aspects of AN. PMID:20838399

  11. Conservation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National Audubon Society, New York, NY.

    This set of teaching aids consists of seven Audubon Nature Bulletins, providing the teacher and student with informational reading on various topics in conservation. The bulletins have these titles: Plants as Makers of Soil, Water Pollution Control, The Ground Water Table, Conservation--To Keep This Earth Habitable, Our Threatened Air Supply,…

  12. Comparison of S. cerevisiae F-BAR domain structures reveals a conserved inositol phosphate binding site

    PubMed Central

    Moravcevic, Katarina; Alvarado, Diego; Schmitz, Karl R.; Kenniston, Jon A.; Mendrola, Jeannine M.; Ferguson, Kathryn M.; Lemmon, Mark A.

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY F-BAR domains control membrane interactions in endocytosis, cytokinesis, and cell signaling. Although generally thought to bind curved membranes containing negatively charged phospholipids, numerous functional studies argue that differences in lipid-binding selectivities of F-BAR domains are functionally important. Here, we compare membrane-binding properties of the S. cerevisiae F-BAR domains in vitro and in vivo. Whereas some F-BAR domains (such as Bzz1p and Hof1p F-BARs) bind equally well to all phospholipids, the F-BAR domain from the RhoGAP Rgd1p preferentially binds phosphoinositides. We determined X-ray crystal structures of F-BAR domains from Hof1p and Rgd1p, the latter bound to an inositol phosphate. The structures explain phospholipid-binding selectivity differences, and reveal an F-BAR phosphoinositide binding site that is fully conserved in a mammalian RhoGAP called Gmip, and is partly retained in certain other F-BAR domains. Our findings reveal previously unappreciated determinants of F-BAR domain lipid-binding specificity, and provide a basis for its prediction from sequence. PMID:25620000

  13. Characterization of 17 chaperone-usher fimbriae encoded by Proteus mirabilis reveals strong conservation

    PubMed Central

    Kuan, Lisa; Schaffer, Jessica N.; Zouzias, Christos D.

    2014-01-01

    Proteus mirabilis is a Gram-negative enteric bacterium that causes complicated urinary tract infections, particularly in patients with indwelling catheters. Sequencing of clinical isolate P. mirabilis HI4320 revealed the presence of 17 predicted chaperone-usher fimbrial operons. We classified these fimbriae into three groups by their genetic relationship to other chaperone-usher fimbriae. Sixteen of these fimbriae are encoded by all seven currently sequenced P. mirabilis genomes. The predicted protein sequence of the major structural subunit for 14 of these fimbriae was highly conserved (≥95 % identity), whereas three other structural subunits (Fim3A, UcaA and Fim6A) were variable. Further examination of 58 clinical isolates showed that 14 of the 17 predicted major structural subunit genes of the fimbriae were present in most strains (>85 %). Transcription of the predicted major structural subunit genes for all 17 fimbriae was measured under different culture conditions designed to mimic conditions in the urinary tract. The majority of the fimbrial genes were induced during stationary phase, static culture or colony growth when compared to exponential-phase aerated culture. Major structural subunit proteins for six of these fimbriae were detected using MS of proteins sheared from the surface of broth-cultured P. mirabilis, demonstrating that this organism may produce multiple fimbriae within a single culture. The high degree of conservation of P. mirabilis fimbriae stands in contrast to uropathogenic Escherichia coli and Salmonella enterica, which exhibit greater variability in their fimbrial repertoires. These findings suggest there may be evolutionary pressure for P. mirabilis to maintain a large fimbrial arsenal. PMID:24809384

  14. Conserved S-Layer-Associated Proteins Revealed by Exoproteomic Survey of S-Layer-Forming Lactobacilli

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Brant R.; Hymes, Jeffrey; Sanozky-Dawes, Rosemary; Henriksen, Emily DeCrescenzo

    2015-01-01

    The Lactobacillus acidophilus homology group comprises Gram-positive species that include L. acidophilus, L. helveticus, L. crispatus, L. amylovorus, L. gallinarum, L. delbrueckii subsp. bulgaricus, L. gasseri, and L. johnsonii. While these bacteria are closely related, they have varied ecological lifestyles as dairy and food fermenters, allochthonous probiotics, or autochthonous commensals of the host gastrointestinal tract. Bacterial cell surface components play a critical role in the molecular dialogue between bacteria and interaction signaling with the intestinal mucosa. Notably, the L. acidophilus complex is distinguished in two clades by the presence or absence of S-layers, which are semiporous crystalline arrays of self-assembling proteinaceous subunits found as the outermost layer of the bacterial cell wall. In this study, S-layer-associated proteins (SLAPs) in the exoproteomes of various S-layer-forming Lactobacillus species were proteomically identified, genomically compared, and transcriptionally analyzed. Four gene regions encoding six putative SLAPs were conserved in the S-layer-forming Lactobacillus species but not identified in the extracts of the closely related progenitor, L. delbrueckii subsp. bulgaricus, which does not produce an S-layer. Therefore, the presence or absence of an S-layer has a clear impact on the exoproteomic composition of Lactobacillus species. This proteomic complexity and differences in the cell surface properties between S-layer- and non-S-layer-forming lactobacilli reveal the potential for SLAPs to mediate intimate probiotic interactions and signaling with the host intestinal mucosa. PMID:26475115

  15. Population genomic analysis reveals highly conserved mitochondrial genomes in the yeast species Lachancea thermotolerans.

    PubMed

    Freel, Kelle C; Friedrich, Anne; Hou, Jing; Schacherer, Joseph

    2014-10-01

    The increasing availability of mitochondrial (mt) sequence data from various yeasts provides a tool to study genomic evolution within and between different species. While the genomes from a range of lineages are available, there is a lack of information concerning intraspecific mtDNA diversity. Here, we analyzed the mt genomes of 50 strains from Lachancea thermotolerans, a protoploid yeast species that has been isolated from several locations (Europe, Asia, Australia, South Africa, and North / South America) and ecological sources (fruit, tree exudate, plant material, and grape and agave fermentations). Protein-coding genes from the mtDNA were used to construct a phylogeny, which reflected a similar, yet less resolved topology than the phylogenetic tree of 50 nuclear genes. In comparison to its sister species Lachancea kluyveri, L. thermotolerans has a smaller mt genome. This is due to shorter intergenic regions and fewer introns, of which the latter are only found in COX1. We revealed that L. kluyveri and L. thermotolerans share similar levels of intraspecific divergence concerning the nuclear genomes. However, L. thermotolerans has a more highly conserved mt genome with the coding regions characterized by low rates of nonsynonymous substitution. Thus, in the mt genomes of L. thermotolerans, stronger purifying selection and lower mutation rates potentially shape genome diversity in contract to what was found for L. kluyveri, demonstrating that the factors driving mt genome evolution are different even between closely related species. PMID:25212859

  16. Conserved S-Layer-Associated Proteins Revealed by Exoproteomic Survey of S-Layer-Forming Lactobacilli.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Brant R; Hymes, Jeffrey; Sanozky-Dawes, Rosemary; Henriksen, Emily DeCrescenzo; Barrangou, Rodolphe; Klaenhammer, Todd R

    2016-01-01

    The Lactobacillus acidophilus homology group comprises Gram-positive species that include L. acidophilus, L. helveticus, L. crispatus, L. amylovorus, L. gallinarum, L. delbrueckii subsp. bulgaricus, L. gasseri, and L. johnsonii. While these bacteria are closely related, they have varied ecological lifestyles as dairy and food fermenters, allochthonous probiotics, or autochthonous commensals of the host gastrointestinal tract. Bacterial cell surface components play a critical role in the molecular dialogue between bacteria and interaction signaling with the intestinal mucosa. Notably, the L. acidophilus complex is distinguished in two clades by the presence or absence of S-layers, which are semiporous crystalline arrays of self-assembling proteinaceous subunits found as the outermost layer of the bacterial cell wall. In this study, S-layer-associated proteins (SLAPs) in the exoproteomes of various S-layer-forming Lactobacillus species were proteomically identified, genomically compared, and transcriptionally analyzed. Four gene regions encoding six putative SLAPs were conserved in the S-layer-forming Lactobacillus species but not identified in the extracts of the closely related progenitor, L. delbrueckii subsp. bulgaricus, which does not produce an S-layer. Therefore, the presence or absence of an S-layer has a clear impact on the exoproteomic composition of Lactobacillus species. This proteomic complexity and differences in the cell surface properties between S-layer- and non-S-layer-forming lactobacilli reveal the potential for SLAPs to mediate intimate probiotic interactions and signaling with the host intestinal mucosa. PMID:26475115

  17. Whole Hillslope Irrigation Reveals Differential Interflow Behavior of Dye Tracers, Conservative Solutes and Nutrients

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jackson, C. R.; Du, E.; Klaus, J.; Griffiths, N. A.; McDonnell, J. J.; Blake, J. I.

    2012-12-01

    Previous investigations of perching and interflow behavior in low angle hillslopes in the SC Coastal Plain have suggested a high threshold for interflow occurrence. Here we report a new irrigation experiment designed to quantify interflow thresholds and reveal subsurface mixing processes during steady state flow conditions over a 12m x 16.5m plot draining to an interflow interception trench. Dye tracers were applied on surface transects prior to irrigation, and bromide (conservative tracer), nitrate, ammonium, and phosphorus (reactive tracers) were added at constant concentrations to the irrigation water drawn from a deep aquifer with a distinct isotopic signature. 417mm of water were applied over 51 hours, and drainage conditions were monitored for a week following irrigation. Interflow in the two drains commenced after 131 and 178mm, and flow rates diminished immediately after irrigation ceased, although interflow continued for four more days. Over the experiment, 199mm of water (49% of applied water) appeared as interflow. Dye tracers moved rapidly with the wetting front, with peak concentrations measured shortly after flow commencement, suggesting saturated topsoil conductivities of 0.5 to 1.5 m/hr. No preferential flow was observed during this experiment or previously during rainfall events at the trench face. Bromide concentrations and the new water fraction rose steadily throughout irrigation, peaking about 16 hours after irrigation ceased. Ammonium and phosphorus concentrations at the trench face were low, suggesting rapid uptake or sorption, while nitrate concentrations were higher, suggesting more conservative transport. Our two collection drains showed identical temporal variation in bromide concentrations but consistently different new/old water fractions, indicating differences in flow paths and storages within the plot. These data suggest that tightly bound soil water exchanged with new water throughout the experiment, and that a significant portion

  18. Bed topography under Antarctic outlet glaciers revealed by mass conservation and radar data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morlighem, M.; Rignot, E. J.; Mouginot, J.; Seroussi, H. L.

    2015-12-01

    Bed topography, together with ice thickness, is an essential characteristic of glaciers and ice sheets for many glaciological applications. Despite significant technical advances, it remains challenging to measure ice thickness remotely, especially in deep troughs occupied by outlet glaciers. The method of mass conservation, that combines radar-derived ice thickness data with high-resolution InSAR-derived ice velocity vectors, provides an effective method for generating a high-resolution bed from sparse radar sounding profiles, and has been successfully applied along the coast of the Greenland Ice Sheet. Applying the same technique to the coast of the Antarctic Ice Sheet presents a number of challenges. The coverage of ice thickness data collected in Antarctica, for example, is much less comprehensive compared to Greenland, especially in the wake of NASA's Operation IceBridge (OIB) Mission in 2010-2015. Here, we combine radar sounder data collected by various centers (OIB/Center for Remote Sensing of Ice Sheets, the British Antarctic Survey and University of Texas) acquired between 1998 and 2011, with high-resolution ice motion data from interferometric SAR (ALOS PALSAR, RADARSAT-2 and Envisat ASAR) to reconstruct bed topography beneath major Antarctic outlet glaciers at an unprecedented level of detail. The results reveal some important features not known previously at that level of detail and shed light on the vulnerability of these glaciers in a warming climate. We find for example that Recovery glacier is deeper than in previous mappings and has long grooves parallel to the flow direction. Denman Glacier, East Antarctica, flow along a deep, narrow trough more than 2,000 m below sea level that extends more than 100 km inland. We find ridges and bumps in the vicinity of the grounding line of Thwaites Glacier, in the Amundsen Sea sector, that are consistent with the pattern of grounding line retreat. We have also a new mapping of the trough upstream of David

  19. Isolation of the mouse (MFH-1) and human (FKHL14) mesenchyme fork head-1 genes reveals conservation of their gene and protein structures

    SciTech Connect

    Miura, Naoyuki; Iida, Kiyoshi; Yang, Xiao-Li

    1997-05-01

    The very recently found evolutionarily conserved DNA-binding domain of 100 amino acids, termed the fork head domain, emerged from a sequence comparison of the rat hepatocyte transcription factor HNF-3{alpha} and the homeotic gene fork head of Drosophila. We previously isolated a new member of this family, the mesenchyme fork head-1 (MFH-1) gene, which is expressed in developing mesenchyme. Here we describe the isolation of the mouse (MFH-1) and human (FKHL14) chromosomal MFH-1 genes and the determination of the gene and protein structures of MFH-1. We found that the MFH-1 gene has no introns and that the identity of the amino acid sequences of mouse and human MFH-1 proteins is 94%. We also investigated the transcriptional activity of the mouse and human MFH-1 proteins and found that both proteins act as positive transactivators. 31 refs., 3 figs.

  20. Analysis of TALE superclass homeobox genes (MEIS, PBC, KNOX, Iroquois, TGIF) reveals a novel domain conserved between plants and animals.

    PubMed Central

    Bürglin, T R

    1997-01-01

    A new Caenorhabditis elegans homeobox gene, ceh-25, is described that belongs to the TALE superclass of atypical homeodomains, which are characterized by three extra residues between helix 1 and helix 2. ORF and PCR analysis revealed a novel type of alternative splicing within the homeobox. The alternative splicing occurs such that two different homeodomains can be generated, which differ in their first 25 amino acids. ceh-25 is an orthologue of the vertebrate Meis genes and it shares a new conserved domain of 130 amino acids with them. A thorough analysis of all TALE homeobox genes was performed and a new classification is presented. Four TALE classes are identified in animals: PBC, MEIS, TGIF and IRO (Iroquois); two types in fungi: the mating type genes (M-ATYP) and the CUP genes; and two types in plants: KNOX and BEL. The IRO class has a new conserved motif downstream of the homeodomain. For the KNOX class, a conserved domain, the KNOX domain, was defined upstream of the homeodomain. Comparison of the KNOX domain and the MEIS domain shows significant sequence similarity revealing the existence of an archetypal group of homeobox genes that encode two associated conserved domains. Thus TALE homeobox genes were already present in the common ancestor of plants, fungi and animals and represent a branch distinct from the typical homeobox genes. PMID:9336443

  1. DNA barcoding applied to ex situ tropical amphibian conservation programme reveals cryptic diversity in captive populations.

    PubMed

    Crawford, Andrew J; Cruz, Catalina; Griffith, Edgardo; Ross, Heidi; Ibáñez, Roberto; Lips, Karen R; Driskell, Amy C; Bermingham, Eldredge; Crump, Paul

    2013-11-01

    Amphibians constitute a diverse yet still incompletely characterized clade of vertebrates, in which new species are still being discovered and described at a high rate. Amphibians are also increasingly endangered, due in part to disease-driven threats of extinctions. As an emergency response, conservationists have begun ex situ assurance colonies for priority species. The abundance of cryptic amphibian diversity, however, may cause problems for ex situ conservation. In this study we used a DNA barcoding approach to survey mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) variation in captive populations of 10 species of Neotropical amphibians maintained in an ex situ assurance programme at El Valle Amphibian Conservation Center (EVACC) in the Republic of Panama. We combined these mtDNA sequences with genetic data from presumably conspecific wild populations sampled from across Panama, and applied genetic distance-based and character-based analyses to identify cryptic lineages. We found that three of ten species harboured substantial cryptic genetic diversity within EVACC, and an additional three species harboured cryptic diversity among wild populations, but not in captivity. Ex situ conservation efforts focused on amphibians are therefore vulnerable to an incomplete taxonomy leading to misidentification among cryptic species. DNA barcoding may therefore provide a simple, standardized protocol to identify cryptic diversity readily applicable to any amphibian community. PMID:23280343

  2. Full-length RNA structure prediction of the HIV-1 genome reveals a conserved core domain.

    PubMed

    Sükösd, Zsuzsanna; Andersen, Ebbe S; Seemann, Stefan E; Jensen, Mads Krogh; Hansen, Mathias; Gorodkin, Jan; Kjems, Jørgen

    2015-12-01

    A distance constrained secondary structural model of the ≈10 kb RNA genome of the HIV-1 has been predicted but higher-order structures, involving long distance interactions, are currently unknown. We present the first global RNA secondary structure model for the HIV-1 genome, which integrates both comparative structure analysis and information from experimental data in a full-length prediction without distance constraints. Besides recovering known structural elements, we predict several novel structural elements that are conserved in HIV-1 evolution. Our results also indicate that the structure of the HIV-1 genome is highly variable in most regions, with a limited number of stable and conserved RNA secondary structures. Most interesting, a set of long distance interactions form a core organizing structure (COS) that organize the genome into three major structural domains. Despite overlapping protein-coding regions the COS is supported by a particular high frequency of compensatory base changes, suggesting functional importance for this element. This new structural element potentially organizes the whole genome into three major domains protruding from a conserved core structure with potential roles in replication and evolution for the virus. PMID:26476446

  3. Comparative analyses reveal a highly conserved endoglucanase in the cellulolytic genus Fibrobacter.

    PubMed Central

    Lin, C; Stahl, D A

    1995-01-01

    An RNA probe complementary to the endoglucanase 3 gene (cel-3) of Fibrobacter succinogenes S85 hybridized to chromosomal DNAs from isolates representing the genetic diversity of the genus. The probe was subsequently used to identify putative cel-3-containing clones from genomic libraries of representative Fibrobacter isolates. Comparative sequence analyses of the cloned cel-3 genes confirmed that cel-3 is conserved among Fibrobacter isolates and that the ancestral cel-3 gene appears to have coevolved with the genus, since the same genealogy was inferred from sequence comparisons of 16S rRNAs and cel-3 genes. Hybridization comparisons using a xylanase gene probe suggested similar conservation of this gene. Together the data indicate that the cellulolytic apparatus is conserved among Fibrobacter isolates and that comparative analyses of homologous elements of the apparatus from different members, in relationship to the now established phylogeny of the genus, could serve to better define the enzymatic basis of fiber digestion in this genus. PMID:7730288

  4. A search for small noncoding RNAs in Staphylococcus aureus reveals a conserved sequence motif for regulation

    PubMed Central

    Geissmann, Thomas; Chevalier, Clément; Cros, Marie-Josée; Boisset, Sandrine; Fechter, Pierre; Noirot, Céline; Schrenzel, Jacques; François, Patrice; Vandenesch, François; Gaspin, Christine; Romby, Pascale

    2009-01-01

    Bioinformatic analysis of the intergenic regions of Staphylococcus aureus predicted multiple regulatory regions. From this analysis, we characterized 11 novel noncoding RNAs (RsaA‐K) that are expressed in several S. aureus strains under different experimental conditions. Many of them accumulate in the late-exponential phase of growth. All ncRNAs are stable and their expression is Hfq-independent. The transcription of several of them is regulated by the alternative sigma B factor (RsaA, D and F) while the expression of RsaE is agrA-dependent. Six of these ncRNAs are specific to S. aureus, four are conserved in other Staphylococci, and RsaE is also present in Bacillaceae. Transcriptomic and proteomic analysis indicated that RsaE regulates the synthesis of proteins involved in various metabolic pathways. Phylogenetic analysis combined with RNA structure probing, searches for RsaE‐mRNA base pairing, and toeprinting assays indicate that a conserved and unpaired UCCC sequence motif of RsaE binds to target mRNAs and prevents the formation of the ribosomal initiation complex. This study unexpectedly shows that most of the novel ncRNAs carry the conserved C−rich motif, suggesting that they are members of a class of ncRNAs that target mRNAs by a shared mechanism. PMID:19786493

  5. Evolutionary genomics reveals conserved structural determinants of signaling and adaptation in microbial chemoreceptors

    SciTech Connect

    Alexander, Roger P; Jouline, Igor B

    2007-01-01

    As an important model for transmembrane signaling, methyl-accepting chemotaxis proteins (MCPs) have been extensively studied by using genetic, biochemical, and structural techniques. However, details of the molecular mechanism of signaling are still not well understood. The availability of genomic information for hundreds of species enables the identification of features in protein sequences that are conserved over long evolutionary distances and thus are critically important for function. We carried out a large-scale comparative genomic analysis of the MCP signaling and adaptation domain family and identified features that appear to be critical for receptor structure and function. Based on domain length and sequence conservation, we identified seven major MCP classes and three distinct structural regions within the cytoplasmic domain: signaling, methylation, and flexible bundle subdomains. The flexible bundle subdomain, not previously recognized in MCPs, is a conserved element that appears to be important for signal transduction. Remarkably, the N- and C-terminal helical arms of the cytoplasmic domain maintain symmetry in length and register despite dramatic variation, from 24 to 64 7-aa heptads in overall domain length. Loss of symmetry is observed in some MCPs, where it is concomitant with specific changes in the sensory module. Each major MCP class has a distinct pattern of predicted methylation sites that is well supported by experimental data. Our findings indicate that signaling and adaptation functions within the MCP cytoplasmic domain are tightly coupled, and that their coevolution has contributed to the significant diversity in chemotaxis mechanisms among different organisms.

  6. The hand in motion of liberals and conservatives reveals the differential processing of positive and negative information.

    PubMed

    Carraro, Luciana; Castelli, Luigi; Negri, Paolo

    2016-07-01

    Recent research revealed that political conservatives and liberals differ in the processing of valenced information. In particular, conservatives (vs. liberals) tend to weigh negative information more than positive information in their perception of the physical and social world. In the present work, we further investigated the ideology-based asymmetries in the processing of negative and positive information examining both the attention-grabbing power of negative information and the trajectories of the movements performed by respondents when required to categorize positive and negative stimuli. To this end we employed a modified version of the Mouse-Tracking procedure (Freeman & Ambady, 2010), recording hand movements during the execution of categorization tasks. Results showed that conservatives were indeed slower to start and execute response actions to negative stimuli, and, more specifically, the trajectories of their movements signaled avoidance tendencies aimed at increasing the distance from negative stimuli. In addition, this pattern of findings emerged both when participants were asked to categorize the stimuli according to their valence and when the same stimuli had to be categorized on the basis of irrelevant perceptual features. Overall, results demonstrate that conservatives and liberals process valenced information differently, perform different spontaneous movements when exposed to them, and that such asymmetries are largely independent from current processing goals. PMID:27160061

  7. Conserved Hydration Sites in Pin1 Reveal a Distinctive Water Recognition Motif in Proteins.

    PubMed

    Barman, Arghya; Smitherman, Crystal; Souffrant, Michael; Gadda, Giovanni; Hamelberg, Donald

    2016-01-25

    Structurally conserved water molecules are important for biomolecular stability, flexibility, and function. X-ray crystallographic studies of Pin1 have resolved a number of water molecules around the enzyme, including two highly conserved water molecules within the protein. The functional role of these localized water molecules remains unknown and unexplored. Pin1 catalyzes cis/trans isomerizations of peptidyl prolyl bonds that are preceded by a phosphorylated serine or threonine residue. Pin1 is involved in many subcellular signaling processes and is a potential therapeutic target for the treatment of several life threatening diseases. Here, we investigate the significance of these structurally conserved water molecules in the catalytic domain of Pin1 using molecular dynamics (MD) simulations, free energy calculations, analysis of X-ray crystal structures, and circular dichroism (CD) experiments. MD simulations and free energy calculations suggest the tighter binding water molecule plays a crucial role in maintaining the integrity and stability of a critical hydrogen-bonding network in the active site. The second water molecule is exchangeable with bulk solvent and is found in a distinctive helix-turn-coil motif. Structural bioinformatics analysis of nonredundant X-ray crystallographic protein structures in the Protein Data Bank (PDB) suggest this motif is present in several other proteins and can act as a water site, akin to the calcium EF hand. CD experiments suggest the isolated motif is in a distorted PII conformation and requires the protein environment to fully form the α-helix-turn-coil motif. This study provides valuable insights into the role of hydration in the structural integrity of Pin1 that can be exploited in protein engineering and drug design. PMID:26651388

  8. Comparative proteomics reveals a significant bias toward alternative protein isoforms with conserved structure and function.

    PubMed

    Ezkurdia, Iakes; del Pozo, Angela; Frankish, Adam; Rodriguez, Jose Manuel; Harrow, Jennifer; Ashman, Keith; Valencia, Alfonso; Tress, Michael L

    2012-09-01

    Advances in high-throughput mass spectrometry are making proteomics an increasingly important tool in genome annotation projects. Peptides detected in mass spectrometry experiments can be used to validate gene models and verify the translation of putative coding sequences (CDSs). Here, we have identified peptides that cover 35% of the genes annotated by the GENCODE consortium for the human genome as part of a comprehensive analysis of experimental spectra from two large publicly available mass spectrometry databases. We detected the translation to protein of "novel" and "putative" protein-coding transcripts as well as transcripts annotated as pseudogenes and nonsense-mediated decay targets. We provide a detailed overview of the population of alternatively spliced protein isoforms that are detectable by peptide identification methods. We found that 150 genes expressed multiple alternative protein isoforms. This constitutes the largest set of reliably confirmed alternatively spliced proteins yet discovered. Three groups of genes were highly overrepresented. We detected alternative isoforms for 10 of the 25 possible heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoproteins, proteins with a key role in the splicing process. Alternative isoforms generated from interchangeable homologous exons and from short indels were also significantly enriched, both in human experiments and in parallel analyses of mouse and Drosophila proteomics experiments. Our results show that a surprisingly high proportion (almost 25%) of the detected alternative isoforms are only subtly different from their constitutive counterparts. Many of the alternative splicing events that give rise to these alternative isoforms are conserved in mouse. It was striking that very few of these conserved splicing events broke Pfam functional domains or would damage globular protein structures. This evidence of a strong bias toward subtle differences in CDS and likely conserved cellular function and structure is remarkable and

  9. Conservation and Variability of West Nile Virus Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Jung, Keun-Ok; Ramdas, Shweta; Miotto, Olivo; Tan, Tin Wee; Brusic, Vladimir; Salmon, Jerome; August, J. Thomas

    2009-01-01

    West Nile virus (WNV) has emerged globally as an increasingly important pathogen for humans and domestic animals. Studies of the evolutionary diversity of the virus over its known history will help to elucidate conserved sites, and characterize their correspondence to other pathogens and their relevance to the immune system. We describe a large-scale analysis of the entire WNV proteome, aimed at identifying and characterizing evolutionarily conserved amino acid sequences. This study, which used 2,746 WNV protein sequences collected from the NCBI GenPept database, focused on analysis of peptides of length 9 amino acids or more, which are immunologically relevant as potential T-cell epitopes. Entropy-based analysis of the diversity of WNV sequences, revealed the presence of numerous evolutionarily stable nonamer positions across the proteome (entropy value of ≤1). The representation (frequency) of nonamers variant to the predominant peptide at these stable positions was, generally, low (≤10% of the WNV sequences analyzed). Eighty-eight fragments of length 9–29 amino acids, representing ∼34% of the WNV polyprotein length, were identified to be identical and evolutionarily stable in all analyzed WNV sequences. Of the 88 completely conserved sequences, 67 are also present in other flaviviruses, and several have been associated with the functional and structural properties of viral proteins. Immunoinformatic analysis revealed that the majority (78/88) of conserved sequences are potentially immunogenic, while 44 contained experimentally confirmed human T-cell epitopes. This study identified a comprehensive catalogue of completely conserved WNV sequences, many of which are shared by other flaviviruses, and majority are potential epitopes. The complete conservation of these immunologically relevant sequences through the entire recorded WNV history suggests they will be valuable as components of peptide-specific vaccines or other therapeutic applications, for

  10. Nme Gene Family Evolutionary History Reveals Pre-Metazoan Origins and High Conservation between Humans and the Sea Anemone, Nematostella vectensis

    PubMed Central

    Desvignes, Thomas; Pontarotti, Pierre; Bobe, Julien

    2010-01-01

    Background The Nme gene family is involved in multiple physiological and pathological processes such as cellular differentiation, development, metastatic dissemination, and cilia functions. Despite the known importance of Nme genes and their use as clinical markers of tumor aggressiveness, the associated cellular mechanisms remain poorly understood. Over the last 20 years, several non-vertebrate model species have been used to investigate Nme functions. However, the evolutionary history of the family remains poorly understood outside the vertebrate lineage. The aim of the study was thus to elucidate the evolutionary history of the Nme gene family in Metazoans. Methodology/Principal Findings Using a total of 21 eukaryote species including 14 metazoans, the evolutionary history of Nme genes was reconstructed in the metazoan lineage. We demonstrated that the complexity of the Nme gene family, initially thought to be restricted to chordates, was also shared by the metazoan ancestor. We also provide evidence suggesting that the complexity of the family is mainly a eukaryotic innovation, with the exception of Nme8 that is likely to be a choanoflagellate/metazoan innovation. Highly conserved gene structure, genomic linkage, and protein domains were identified among metazoans, some features being also conserved in eukaryotes. When considering the entire Nme family, the starlet sea anemone is the studied metazoan species exhibiting the most conserved gene and protein sequence features with humans. In addition, we were able to show that most of the proteins known to interact with human NME proteins were also found in starlet sea anemone. Conclusion/Significance Together, our observations further support the association of Nme genes with key cellular functions that have been conserved throughout metazoan evolution. Future investigations of evolutionarily conserved Nme gene functions using the starlet sea anemone could shed new light on a wide variety of key developmental and

  11. CDK1 structures reveal conserved and unique features of the essential cell cycle CDK

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brown, Nicholas R.; Korolchuk, Svitlana; Martin, Mathew P.; Stanley, Will A.; Moukhametzianov, Rouslan; Noble, Martin E. M.; Endicott, Jane A.

    2015-04-01

    CDK1 is the only essential cell cycle CDK in human cells and is required for successful completion of M-phase. It is the founding member of the CDK family and is conserved across all eukaryotes. Here we report the crystal structures of complexes of CDK1-Cks1 and CDK1-cyclin B-Cks2. These structures confirm the conserved nature of the inactive monomeric CDK fold and its ability to be remodelled by cyclin binding. Relative to CDK2-cyclin A, CDK1-cyclin B is less thermally stable, has a smaller interfacial surface, is more susceptible to activation segment dephosphorylation and shows differences in the substrate sequence features that determine activity. Both CDK1 and CDK2 are potential cancer targets for which selective compounds are required. We also describe the first structure of CDK1 bound to a potent ATP-competitive inhibitor and identify aspects of CDK1 structure and plasticity that might be exploited to develop CDK1-selective inhibitors.

  12. Proteomic Analysis of Pathogenic Fungi Reveals Highly Expressed Conserved Cell Wall Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Champer, Jackson; Ito, James I.; Clemons, Karl V.; Stevens, David A.; Kalkum, Markus

    2016-01-01

    We are presenting a quantitative proteomics tally of the most commonly expressed conserved fungal proteins of the cytosol, the cell wall, and the secretome. It was our goal to identify fungi-typical proteins that do not share significant homology with human proteins. Such fungal proteins are of interest to the development of vaccines or drug targets. Protein samples were derived from 13 fungal species, cultured in rich or in minimal media; these included clinical isolates of Aspergillus, Candida, Mucor, Cryptococcus, and Coccidioides species. Proteomes were analyzed by quantitative MSE (Mass Spectrometry—Elevated Collision Energy). Several thousand proteins were identified and quantified in total across all fractions and culture conditions. The 42 most abundant proteins identified in fungal cell walls or supernatants shared no to very little homology with human proteins. In contrast, all but five of the 50 most abundant cytosolic proteins had human homologs with sequence identity averaging 59%. Proteomic comparisons of the secreted or surface localized fungal proteins highlighted conserved homologs of the Aspergillus fumigatus proteins 1,3-β-glucanosyltransferases (Bgt1, Gel1-4), Crf1, Ecm33, EglC, and others. The fact that Crf1 and Gel1 were previously shown to be promising vaccine candidates, underlines the value of the proteomics data presented here. PMID:26878023

  13. The Large Mitochondrial Genome of Symbiodinium minutum Reveals Conserved Noncoding Sequences between Dinoflagellates and Apicomplexans

    PubMed Central

    Shoguchi, Eiichi; Shinzato, Chuya; Hisata, Kanako; Satoh, Nori; Mungpakdee, Sutada

    2015-01-01

    Even though mitochondrial genomes, which characterize eukaryotic cells, were first discovered more than 50 years ago, mitochondrial genomics remains an important topic in molecular biology and genome sciences. The Phylum Alveolata comprises three major groups (ciliates, apicomplexans, and dinoflagellates), the mitochondrial genomes of which have diverged widely. Even though the gene content of dinoflagellate mitochondrial genomes is reportedly comparable to that of apicomplexans, the highly fragmented and rearranged genome structures of dinoflagellates have frustrated whole genomic analysis. Consequently, noncoding sequences and gene arrangements of dinoflagellate mitochondrial genomes have not been well characterized. Here we report that the continuous assembled genome (∼326 kb) of the dinoflagellate, Symbiodinium minutum, is AT-rich (∼64.3%) and that it contains three protein-coding genes. Based upon in silico analysis, the remaining 99% of the genome comprises transcriptomic noncoding sequences. RNA edited sites and unique, possible start and stop codons clarify conserved regions among dinoflagellates. Our massive transcriptome analysis shows that almost all regions of the genome are transcribed, including 27 possible fragmented ribosomal RNA genes and 12 uncharacterized small RNAs that are similar to mitochondrial RNA genes of the malarial parasite, Plasmodium falciparum. Gene map comparisons show that gene order is only slightly conserved between S. minutum and P. falciparum. However, small RNAs and intergenic sequences share sequence similarities with P. falciparum, suggesting that the function of noncoding sequences has been preserved despite development of very different genome structures. PMID:26199191

  14. Comparative genomics reveals conservation of filaggrin and loss of caspase-14 in dolphins.

    PubMed

    Strasser, Bettina; Mlitz, Veronika; Fischer, Heinz; Tschachler, Erwin; Eckhart, Leopold

    2015-05-01

    The expression of filaggrin and its stepwise proteolytic degradation are critical events in the terminal differentiation of epidermal keratinocytes and in the formation of the skin barrier to the environment. Here, we investigated whether the evolutionary transition from a terrestrial to a fully aquatic lifestyle of cetaceans, that is dolphins and whales, has been associated with changes in genes encoding filaggrin and proteins involved in the processing of filaggrin. We used comparative genomics, PCRs and re-sequencing of gene segments to screen for the presence and integrity of genes coding for filaggrin and proteases implicated in the maturation of (pro)filaggrin. Filaggrin has been conserved in dolphins (bottlenose dolphin, orca and baiji) but has been lost in whales (sperm whale and minke whale). All other S100 fused-type genes have been lost in cetaceans. Among filaggrin-processing proteases, aspartic peptidase retroviral-like 1 (ASPRV1), also known as saspase, has been conserved, whereas caspase-14 has been lost in all cetaceans investigated. In conclusion, our results suggest that filaggrin is dispensable for the acquisition of fully aquatic lifestyles of whales, whereas it appears to confer an evolutionary advantage to dolphins. The discordant evolution of filaggrin, saspase and caspase-14 in cetaceans indicates that the biological roles of these proteins are not strictly interdependent. PMID:25739514

  15. The Large Mitochondrial Genome of Symbiodinium minutum Reveals Conserved Noncoding Sequences between Dinoflagellates and Apicomplexans.

    PubMed

    Shoguchi, Eiichi; Shinzato, Chuya; Hisata, Kanako; Satoh, Nori; Mungpakdee, Sutada

    2015-08-01

    Even though mitochondrial genomes, which characterize eukaryotic cells, were first discovered more than 50 years ago, mitochondrial genomics remains an important topic in molecular biology and genome sciences. The Phylum Alveolata comprises three major groups (ciliates, apicomplexans, and dinoflagellates), the mitochondrial genomes of which have diverged widely. Even though the gene content of dinoflagellate mitochondrial genomes is reportedly comparable to that of apicomplexans, the highly fragmented and rearranged genome structures of dinoflagellates have frustrated whole genomic analysis. Consequently, noncoding sequences and gene arrangements of dinoflagellate mitochondrial genomes have not been well characterized. Here we report that the continuous assembled genome (∼326 kb) of the dinoflagellate, Symbiodinium minutum, is AT-rich (∼64.3%) and that it contains three protein-coding genes. Based upon in silico analysis, the remaining 99% of the genome comprises transcriptomic noncoding sequences. RNA edited sites and unique, possible start and stop codons clarify conserved regions among dinoflagellates. Our massive transcriptome analysis shows that almost all regions of the genome are transcribed, including 27 possible fragmented ribosomal RNA genes and 12 uncharacterized small RNAs that are similar to mitochondrial RNA genes of the malarial parasite, Plasmodium falciparum. Gene map comparisons show that gene order is only slightly conserved between S. minutum and P. falciparum. However, small RNAs and intergenic sequences share sequence similarities with P. falciparum, suggesting that the function of noncoding sequences has been preserved despite development of very different genome structures. PMID:26199191

  16. Genomic analyses reveal a conserved glutathione homeostasis pathway in the invertebrate chordate Ciona intestinalis

    PubMed Central

    Nava, Gerardo M.; Lee, David Y.; Ospina, Javier H.; Cai, Shi-Ying

    2009-01-01

    The major thiol redox buffer glutathione (l-γ-glutamyl-l-cysteinylglycine, GSH) is central to cell fate determination, and thus, associated metabolic and regulatory pathways are exquisitely sensitive to a wide range of environmental cues. An imbalance of cellular redox homeostasis has emerged as a pathologic hallmark of a diverse range of human gene-environment disorders. Despite the central importance of GSH in cellular homeostasis, underlying genetic regulatory pathways remain poorly defined. This report describes the annotation and expression analysis of genes contributing to GSH homeostasis in the invertebrate chordate Ciona intestinalis. A core pathway comprising 19 genes contributing to the biosynthesis of GSH and its use as both a redox buffer and a conjugate in phase II detoxification as well as known transcriptional regulators were analyzed. These genes exhibit a high level of sequence conservation with corresponding human, rat, and mouse homologs and were expressed constitutively in tissues of adult animals. The GSH biosynthetic genes Gclc and Gclm were also responsive to the prototypical antioxidant tert-butylhydroquinone. The present evidence of a conserved GSH homeostasis pathway in C. intestinalis together with its phylogenetic position as a basal chordate and lifestyle as a filter feeder constantly exposed to natural marine toxins introduces this species as an important animal model for defining molecular mechanisms that potentially underlie genetic susceptibility to environmentally associated stress. PMID:19470804

  17. Characterization of a novel gene adjacent to PAX6, revealing synteny conservation with functional significance.

    PubMed

    Kleinjan, Dirk A; Seawright, Anne; Elgar, Greg; van Heyningen, Veronica

    2002-02-01

    The human eye anomaly aniridia is normally caused by intragenic mutations of PAX6. Several cases of aniridia are, however, associated with chromosomal rearrangements that leave the PAX6 gene intact. We have identified and characterized a novel gene, PAXNEB (C11orf19), downstream (telomeric) of PAX6. Sequence analysis, including interspecies comparisons, show this gene to consist of 10 exons, with an unusually large final intron spanning 134 kb in human and 18 kb in Fugu. This intron is disrupted by each chromosomal rearrangement. The 2-kb PAXNEB transcript, encoding a 424-amino acid protein, is expressed in all cell lines tested. The homologous mouse cDNA is broadly expressed in mouse embryos. PAXNEB is highly conserved from mammals to fish, with some regions of the protein showing conservation to invertebrates, yeast, and plants. The possible role of PAXNEB in aniridia was assessed. Using a transgenic mouse model, we show that the aniridia phenotype of the chromosomal rearrangement cases is not due to the heterozygous loss of PAXNEB function. PMID:11889558

  18. CDK1 structures reveal conserved and unique features of the essential cell cycle CDK

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Nicholas R.; Korolchuk, Svitlana; Martin, Mathew P.; Stanley, Will; Moukhametzianov, Rouslan; Noble, Martin E.M.; Endicott, Jane A.

    2015-01-01

    CDK1 is the only essential cell cycle CDK in human cells and is required for successful completion of M-phase. It is the founding member of the CDK family and is conserved across all eukaryotes. Here we report the crystal structures of complexes of CDK1–Cks1 and CDK1–cyclin B–Cks2. These structures confirm the conserved nature of the inactive monomeric CDK fold and its ability to be remodeled by cyclin binding. Relative to CDK2–cyclin A, CDK1–cyclin B is less thermally stable, has a smaller interfacial surface, is more susceptible to activation segment dephosphorylation, and shows differences in the substrate sequence features that determine activity. Both CDK1 and CDK2 are potential cancer targets for which selective compounds are required. We also describe the first structure of CDK1 bound to a potent ATP-competitive inhibitor and identify aspects of CDK1 structure and plasticity that might be exploited to develop CDK1-selective inhibitors. PMID:25864384

  19. Comparative genomics reveals conservation of filaggrin and loss of caspase-14 in dolphins

    PubMed Central

    Strasser, Bettina; Mlitz, Veronika; Fischer, Heinz; Tschachler, Erwin; Eckhart, Leopold

    2015-01-01

    The expression of filaggrin and its stepwise proteolytic degradation are critical events in the terminal differentiation of epidermal keratinocytes and in the formation of the skin barrier to the environment. Here, we investigated whether the evolutionary transition from a terrestrial to a fully aquatic lifestyle of cetaceans, that is dolphins and whales, has been associated with changes in genes encoding filaggrin and proteins involved in the processing of filaggrin. We used comparative genomics, PCRs and re-sequencing of gene segments to screen for the presence and integrity of genes coding for filaggrin and proteases implicated in the maturation of (pro)filaggrin. Filaggrin has been conserved in dolphins (bottlenose dolphin, orca and baiji) but has been lost in whales (sperm whale and minke whale). All other S100 fused-type genes have been lost in cetaceans. Among filaggrin-processing proteases, aspartic peptidase retroviral-like 1 (ASPRV1), also known as saspase, has been conserved, whereas caspase-14 has been lost in all cetaceans investigated. In conclusion, our results suggest that filaggrin is dispensable for the acquisition of fully aquatic lifestyles of whales, whereas it appears to confer an evolutionary advantage to dolphins. The discordant evolution of filaggrin, saspase and caspase-14 in cetaceans indicates that the biological roles of these proteins are not strictly interdependent. PMID:25739514

  20. The structure of the exocyst subunit Sec6p defines a conserved architecture with diverse roles.

    PubMed

    Sivaram, Mylavarapu V S; Furgason, Melonnie L M; Brewer, Daniel N; Munson, Mary

    2006-06-01

    The exocyst is a conserved protein complex essential for trafficking secretory vesicles to the plasma membrane. The structure of the C-terminal domain of the exocyst subunit Sec6p reveals multiple helical bundles, which are structurally and topologically similar to Exo70p and the C-terminal domains of Exo84p and Sec15, despite <10% sequence identity. The helical bundles appear to be evolutionarily related molecular scaffolds that have diverged to create functionally distinct exocyst proteins. PMID:16699513

  1. Genome-wide Mapping Reveals Conservation of Promoter DNA Methylation Following Chicken Domestication

    PubMed Central

    Li, Qinghe; Wang, Yuanyuan; Hu, Xiaoxiang; Zhao, Yaofeng; Li, Ning

    2015-01-01

    It is well-known that environment influences DNA methylation, however, the extent of heritable DNA methylation variation following animal domestication remains largely unknown. Using meDIP-chip we mapped the promoter methylomes for 23,316 genes in muscle tissues of ancestral and domestic chickens. We systematically examined the variation of promoter DNA methylation in terms of different breeds, differentially expressed genes, SNPs and genes undergo genetic selection sweeps. While considerable changes in DNA sequence and gene expression programs were prevalent, we found that the inter-strain DNA methylation patterns were highly conserved in promoter region between the wild and domestic chicken breeds. Our data suggests a global preservation of DNA methylation between the wild and domestic chicken breeds in either a genome-wide or locus-specific scale in chick muscle tissues. PMID:25735894

  2. Conserved evolutionary units in the heme-copper oxidase superfamily revealed by novel homologous protein families

    PubMed Central

    Pei, Jimin; Li, Wenlin; Kinch, Lisa N; Grishin, Nick V

    2014-01-01

    The heme-copper oxidase (HCO) superfamily includes HCOs in aerobic respiratory chains and nitric oxide reductases (NORs) in the denitrification pathway. The HCO/NOR catalytic subunit has a core structure consisting of 12 transmembrane helices (TMHs) arranged in three-fold rotational pseudosymmetry, with six conserved histidines for heme and metal binding. Using sensitive sequence similarity searches, we detected a number of novel HCO/NOR homologs and named them HCO Homology (HCOH) proteins. Several HCOH families possess only four TMHs that exhibit the most pronounced similarity to the last four TMHs (TMHs 9–12) of HCOs/NORs. Encoded by independent genes, four-TMH HCOH proteins represent a single evolutionary unit (EU) that relates to each of the three homologous EUs of HCOs/NORs comprising TMHs 1–4, TMHs 5–8, and TMHs 9–12. Single-EU HCOH proteins could form homotrimers or heterotrimers to maintain the general structure and ligand-binding sites defined by the HCO/NOR catalytic subunit fold. The remaining HCOH families, including NnrS, have 12-TMHs and three EUs. Most three-EU HCOH proteins possess two conserved histidines and could bind a single heme. Limited experimental studies and genomic context analysis suggest that many HCOH proteins could function in the denitrification pathway and in detoxification of reactive molecules such as nitric oxide. HCO/NOR catalytic subunits exhibit remarkable structural similarity to the homotrimers of MAPEG (membrane-associated proteins in eicosanoid and glutathione metabolism) proteins. Gene duplication, fusion, and fission likely play important roles in the evolution of HCOs/NORs and HCOH proteins. PMID:24931479

  3. Comparative Genomic and Phylogenomic Analyses Reveal a Conserved Core Genome Shared by Estuarine and Oceanic Cyanopodoviruses

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Sijun; Zhang, Si; Jiao, Nianzhi; Chen, Feng

    2015-01-01

    Podoviruses are among the major viral groups that infect marine picocyanobacteria Prochlorococcus and Synechococcus. Here, we reported the genome sequences of five Synechococcus podoviruses isolated from the estuarine environment, and performed comparative genomic and phylogenomic analyses based on a total of 20 cyanopodovirus genomes. The genomes of all the known marine cyanopodoviruses are highly syntenic. A pan-genome of 349 clustered orthologous groups was determined, among which 15 were core genes. These core genes make up nearly half of each genome in length, reflecting the high level of genome conservation among this cyanophage type. The whole genome phylogenies based on concatenated core genes and gene content were highly consistent and confirmed the separation of two discrete marine cyanopodovirus clusters MPP-A and MPP-B. The genomes within cluster MPP-B grouped into subclusters mainly corresponding to Prochlorococcus or Synechococcus host types. Auxiliary metabolic genes tend to occur in a specific phylogenetic group of these cyanopodoviruses. All the MPP-B phages analyzed here encode the photosynthesis gene psbA, which are absent in all the MPP-A genomes thus far. Interestingly, all the MPP-B and two MPP-A Synechococcus podoviruses encode the thymidylate synthase gene thyX, while at the same genome locus all the MPP-B Prochlorococcus podoviruses encode the transaldolase gene talC. Both genes are hypothesized to have the potential to facilitate the biosynthesis of deoxynucleotide for phage replication. Inheritance of specific functional genes could be important to the evolution and ecological fitness of certain cyanophage genotypes. Our analyses demonstrate that cyanopodoviruses of estuarine and oceanic origins share a conserved core genome and suggest that accessory genes may be related to environmental adaptation. PMID:26569403

  4. Systems level analysis of the Chlamydomonas reinhardtii metabolic network reveals variability in evolutionary co-conservation.

    PubMed

    Chaiboonchoe, Amphun; Ghamsari, Lila; Dohai, Bushra; Ng, Patrick; Khraiwesh, Basel; Jaiswal, Ashish; Jijakli, Kenan; Koussa, Joseph; Nelson, David R; Cai, Hong; Yang, Xinping; Chang, Roger L; Papin, Jason; Yu, Haiyuan; Balaji, Santhanam; Salehi-Ashtiani, Kourosh

    2016-07-19

    Metabolic networks, which are mathematical representations of organismal metabolism, are reconstructed to provide computational platforms to guide metabolic engineering experiments and explore fundamental questions on metabolism. Systems level analyses, such as interrogation of phylogenetic relationships within the network, can provide further guidance on the modification of metabolic circuitries. Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, a biofuel relevant green alga that has retained key genes with plant, animal, and protist affinities, serves as an ideal model organism to investigate the interplay between gene function and phylogenetic affinities at multiple organizational levels. Here, using detailed topological and functional analyses, coupled with transcriptomics studies on a metabolic network that we have reconstructed for C. reinhardtii, we show that network connectivity has a significant concordance with the co-conservation of genes; however, a distinction between topological and functional relationships is observable within the network. Dynamic and static modes of co-conservation were defined and observed in a subset of gene-pairs across the network topologically. In contrast, genes with predicted synthetic interactions, or genes involved in coupled reactions, show significant enrichment for both shorter and longer phylogenetic distances. Based on our results, we propose that the metabolic network of C. reinhardtii is assembled with an architecture to minimize phylogenetic profile distances topologically, while it includes an expansion of such distances for functionally interacting genes. This arrangement may increase the robustness of C. reinhardtii's network in dealing with varied environmental challenges that the species may face. The defined evolutionary constraints within the network, which identify important pairings of genes in metabolism, may offer guidance on synthetic biology approaches to optimize the production of desirable metabolites. PMID:27357594

  5. Genome-wide microRNA screening reveals that the evolutionary conserved miR-9a regulates body growth by targeting sNPFR1/NPYR.

    PubMed

    Suh, Yoon Seok; Bhat, Shreelatha; Hong, Seung-Hyun; Shin, Minjung; Bahk, Suhyoung; Cho, Kyung Sang; Kim, Seung-Whan; Lee, Kyu-Sun; Kim, Young-Joon; Jones, Walton D; Yu, Kweon

    2015-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) regulate many physiological processes including body growth. Insulin/IGF signalling is the primary regulator of animal body growth, but the extent to which miRNAs act in insulin-producing cells (IPCs) is unclear. Here we generate a UAS-miRNA library of Drosophila stocks and perform a genetic screen to identify miRNAs whose overexpression in the IPCs inhibits body growth in Drosophila. Through this screen, we identify miR-9a as an evolutionarily conserved regulator of insulin signalling and body growth. IPC-specific miR-9a overexpression reduces insulin signalling and body size. Of the predicted targets of miR-9a, we find that loss of miR-9a enhances the level of sNPFR1. We show via an in vitro binding assay that miR-9a binds to sNPFR1 mRNA in insect cells and to the mammalian orthologue NPY2R in rat insulinoma cells. These findings indicate that the conserved miR-9a regulates body growth by controlling sNPFR1/NPYR-mediated modulation of insulin signalling. PMID:26138755

  6. The crystal structure of human IRE1 luminal domain reveals a conserved dimerization interface required for activation of the unfolded protein response

    SciTech Connect

    Zhou, Jiahai; Liu, Chuan Yin; Back, Sung Hoon; Clark, Robert L.; Peisach, Daniel; Xu, Zhaohui; Kaufman, Randal J.

    2010-03-08

    The unfolded protein response (UPR) is an evolutionarily conserved mechanism by which all eukaryotic cells adapt to the accumulation of unfolded proteins in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). Inositol-requiring kinase 1 (IRE1) and PKR-related ER kinase (PERK) are two type I transmembrane ER-localized protein kinase receptors that signal the UPR through a process that involves homodimerization and autophosphorylation. To elucidate the molecular basis of the ER transmembrane signaling event, we determined the x-ray crystal structure of the luminal domain of human IRE1{alpha}. The monomer of the luminal domain comprises a unique fold of a triangular assembly of {beta}-sheet clusters. Structural analysis identified an extensive dimerization interface stabilized by hydrogen bonds and hydrophobic interactions. Dimerization creates an MHC-like groove at the interface. However, because this groove is too narrow for peptide binding and the purified luminal domain forms high-affinity dimers in vitro, peptide binding to this groove is not required for dimerization. Consistent with our structural observations, mutations that disrupt the dimerization interface produced IRE1{alpha} molecules that failed to either dimerize or activate the UPR upon ER stress. In addition, mutations in a structurally homologous region within PERK also prevented dimerization. Our structural, biochemical, and functional studies in vivo altogether demonstrate that IRE1 and PERK have conserved a common molecular interface necessary and sufficient for dimerization and UPR signaling.

  7. Genome-wide microRNA screening reveals that the evolutionary conserved miR-9a regulates body growth by targeting sNPFR1/NPYR

    PubMed Central

    Suh, Yoon Seok; Bhat, Shreelatha; Hong, Seung-Hyun; Shin, Minjung; Bahk, Suhyoung; Cho, Kyung Sang; Kim, Seung-Whan; Lee, Kyu-Sun; Kim, Young-Joon; Jones, Walton D.; Yu, Kweon

    2015-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) regulate many physiological processes including body growth. Insulin/IGF signalling is the primary regulator of animal body growth, but the extent to which miRNAs act in insulin-producing cells (IPCs) is unclear. Here we generate a UAS-miRNA library of Drosophila stocks and perform a genetic screen to identify miRNAs whose overexpression in the IPCs inhibits body growth in Drosophila. Through this screen, we identify miR-9a as an evolutionarily conserved regulator of insulin signalling and body growth. IPC-specific miR-9a overexpression reduces insulin signalling and body size. Of the predicted targets of miR-9a, we find that loss of miR-9a enhances the level of sNPFR1. We show via an in vitro binding assay that miR-9a binds to sNPFR1 mRNA in insect cells and to the mammalian orthologue NPY2R in rat insulinoma cells. These findings indicate that the conserved miR-9a regulates body growth by controlling sNPFR1/NPYR-mediated modulation of insulin signalling. PMID:26138755

  8. Annotation of Protein Domains Reveals Remarkable Conservation in the Functional Make up of Proteomes Across Superkingdoms

    PubMed Central

    Nasir, Arshan; Naeem, Aisha; Khan, Muhammad Jawad; Lopez-Nicora, Horacio D.; Caetano-Anollés, Gustavo

    2011-01-01

    The functional repertoire of a cell is largely embodied in its proteome, the collection of proteins encoded in the genome of an organism. The molecular functions of proteins are the direct consequence of their structure and structure can be inferred from sequence using hidden Markov models of structural recognition. Here we analyze the functional annotation of protein domain structures in almost a thousand sequenced genomes, exploring the functional and structural diversity of proteomes. We find there is a remarkable conservation in the distribution of domains with respect to the molecular functions they perform in the three superkingdoms of life. In general, most of the protein repertoire is spent in functions related to metabolic processes but there are significant differences in the usage of domains for regulatory and extra-cellular processes both within and between superkingdoms. Our results support the hypotheses that the proteomes of superkingdom Eukarya evolved via genome expansion mechanisms that were directed towards innovating new domain architectures for regulatory and extra/intracellular process functions needed for example to maintain the integrity of multicellular structure or to interact with environmental biotic and abiotic factors (e.g., cell signaling and adhesion, immune responses, and toxin production). Proteomes of microbial superkingdoms Archaea and Bacteria retained fewer numbers of domains and maintained simple and smaller protein repertoires. Viruses appear to play an important role in the evolution of superkingdoms. We finally identify few genomic outliers that deviate significantly from the conserved functional design. These include Nanoarchaeum equitans, proteobacterial symbionts of insects with extremely reduced genomes, Tenericutes and Guillardia theta. These organisms spend most of their domains on information functions, including translation and transcription, rather than on metabolism and harbor a domain repertoire characteristic of

  9. Comprehensive analysis of imprinted genes in maize reveals allelic variation for imprinting and limited conservation with other species.

    PubMed

    Waters, Amanda J; Bilinski, Paul; Eichten, Steven R; Vaughn, Matthew W; Ross-Ibarra, Jeffrey; Gehring, Mary; Springer, Nathan M

    2013-11-26

    In plants, a subset of genes exhibit imprinting in endosperm tissue such that expression is primarily from the maternal or paternal allele. Imprinting may arise as a consequence of mechanisms for silencing of transposons during reproduction, and in some cases imprinted expression of particular genes may provide a selective advantage such that it is conserved across species. Separate mechanisms for the origin of imprinted expression patterns and maintenance of these patterns may result in substantial variation in the targets of imprinting in different species. Here we present deep sequencing of RNAs isolated from reciprocal crosses of four diverse maize genotypes, providing a comprehensive analysis that allows evaluation of imprinting at more than 95% of endosperm-expressed genes. We find that over 500 genes exhibit statistically significant parent-of-origin effects in maize endosperm tissue, but focused our analyses on a subset of these genes that had >90% expression from the maternal allele (69 genes) or from the paternal allele (108 genes) in at least one reciprocal cross. Over 10% of imprinted genes show evidence of allelic variation for imprinting. A comparison of imprinting in maize and rice reveals that 13% of genes with syntenic orthologs in both species exhibit conserved imprinting. Genes that exhibit conserved imprinting between maize and rice have elevated nonsynonymous to synonymous substitution ratios compared with other imprinted genes, suggesting a history of more rapid evolution. Together, these data suggest that imprinting only has functional relevance at a subset of loci that currently exhibit imprinting in maize. PMID:24218619

  10. Chorismatase Mechanisms Reveal Fundamentally Different Types of Reaction in a Single Conserved Protein Fold.

    PubMed

    Hubrich, Florian; Juneja, Puneet; Müller, Michael; Diederichs, Kay; Welte, Wolfram; Andexer, Jennifer N

    2015-09-01

    Chorismatases are a class of chorismate-converting enzymes involved in the biosynthetic pathways of different natural products, many of them with interesting pharmaceutical characteristics. So far, three subfamilies of chorismatases are described that convert chorismate into different (dihydro-)benzoate derivatives (CH-FkbO, CH-Hyg5, and CH-XanB2). Until now, the detailed enzyme mechanism and the molecular basis for the different reaction products were unknown. Here we show that the CH-FkbO and CH-Hyg5 subfamilies share the same protein fold, but employ fundamentally different reaction mechanisms. While the FkbO reaction is a typical hydrolysis, the Hyg5 reaction proceeds intramolecularly, most likely via an arene oxide intermediate. Two nonconserved active site residues were identified that are responsible for the different reaction mechanisms in CH-FkbO and CH-Hyg5. Further, we propose an additional amino acid residue to be responsible for the discrimination of the CH-XanB2 subfamily, which catalyzes the formation of two different hydroxybenzoate regioisomers, likely in a single active site. A multiple sequence alignment shows that these three crucial amino acid positions are located in conserved motifs and can therefore be used to assign unknown chorismatases to the corresponding subfamily. PMID:26247872

  11. Pan-cancer transcriptome analysis reveals long noncoding RNAs with conserved function

    PubMed Central

    Cabanski, Christopher R; White, Nicole M; Dang, Ha X; Silva-Fisher, Jessica M; Rauck, Corinne E; Cicka, Danielle; Maher, Christopher A

    2015-01-01

    A growing number of gene-centric studies have highlighted the emerging significance of lncRNAs in cancer. However, these studies primarily focus on a single cancer type. Therefore, we conducted a pan-cancer analysis of lncRNAs comparing tumor and matched normal expression levels using RNA-Seq data from ∼ 3,000 patients in 8 solid tumor types. While the majority of differentially expressed lncRNAs display tissue-specific expression we discovered 229 lncRNAs with outlier or differential expression across multiple cancers, which we refer to as 'onco-lncRNAs'. Due to their consistent altered expression, we hypothesize that these onco-lncRNAs may have conserved oncogenic and tumor suppressive functions across cancers. To address this, we associated the onco-lncRNAs in biological processes based on their co-expressed protein coding genes. To validate our predictions, we experimentally confirmed cell growth dependence of 2 novel oncogenic lncRNAs, onco-lncRNA-3 and onco-lncRNA-12, and a previously identified lncRNA CCAT1. Overall, we discovered lncRNAs that may have broad oncogenic and tumor suppressor roles that could significantly advance our understanding of cancer lncRNA biology. PMID:25864709

  12. Hybridization Capture Reveals Evolution and Conservation across the Entire Koala Retrovirus Genome

    PubMed Central

    Ishida, Yasuko; Cui, Pin; Vielgrader, Hanna; Helgen, Kristofer M.; Roca, Alfred L.; Greenwood, Alex D.

    2014-01-01

    The koala retrovirus (KoRV) is the only retrovirus known to be in the midst of invading the germ line of its host species. Hybridization capture and next generation sequencing were used on modern and museum DNA samples of koala (Phascolarctos cinereus) to examine ca. 130 years of evolution across the full KoRV genome. Overall, the entire proviral genome appeared to be conserved across time in sequence, protein structure and transcriptional binding sites. A total of 138 polymorphisms were detected, of which 72 were found in more than one individual. At every polymorphic site in the museum koalas, one of the character states matched that of modern KoRV. Among non-synonymous polymorphisms, radical substitutions involving large physiochemical differences between amino acids were elevated in env, potentially reflecting anti-viral immune pressure or avoidance of receptor interference. Polymorphisms were not detected within two functional regions believed to affect infectivity. Host sequences flanking proviral integration sites were also captured; with few proviral loci shared among koalas. Recently described variants of KoRV, designated KoRV-B and KoRV-J, were not detected in museum samples, suggesting that these variants may be of recent origin. PMID:24752422

  13. Transcriptome Analysis Reveals Strain-Specific and Conserved Stemness Genes in Schmidtea mediterranea

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Yi-Chien; Horowitz, Michael; Graveley, Brenton R.

    2012-01-01

    The planarian Schmidtea mediterranea is a powerful model organism for studying stem cell biology due to its extraordinary regenerative ability mediated by neoblasts, a population of adult somatic stem cells. Elucidation of the S. mediterranea transcriptome and the dynamics of transcript expression will increase our understanding of the gene regulatory programs that regulate stem cell function and differentiation. Here, we have used RNA-Seq to characterize the S. mediterranea transcriptome in sexual and asexual animals and in purified neoblast and differentiated cell populations. Our analysis identified many uncharacterized genes, transcripts, and alternatively spliced isoforms that are differentially expressed in a strain or cell type-specific manner. Transcriptome profiling of purified neoblasts and differentiated cells identified neoblast-enriched transcripts, many of which likely play important roles in regeneration and stem cell function. Strikingly, many of the neoblast-enriched genes are orthologs of genes whose expression is enriched in human embryonic stem cells, suggesting that a core set of genes that regulate stem cell function are conserved across metazoan species. PMID:22496805

  14. Heart Structure-Specific Transcriptomic Atlas Reveals Conserved microRNA-mRNA Interactions

    PubMed Central

    Vacchi-Suzzi, Caterina; Hahne, Florian; Scheubel, Philippe; Marcellin, Magali; Dubost, Valerie; Westphal, Magdalena; Boeglen, Catherine; Büchmann-Møller, Stine; Cheung, Ming Sin; Cordier, André; De Benedetto, Christopher; Deurinck, Mark; Frei, Moritz; Moulin, Pierre; Oakeley, Edward; Grenet, Olivier; Grevot, Armelle; Stull, Robert; Theil, Diethilde; Moggs, Jonathan G.; Marrer, Estelle; Couttet, Philippe

    2013-01-01

    MicroRNAs are short non-coding RNAs that regulate gene expression at the post-transcriptional level and play key roles in heart development and cardiovascular diseases. Here, we have characterized the expression and distribution of microRNAs across eight cardiac structures (left and right ventricles, apex, papillary muscle, septum, left and right atrium and valves) in rat, Beagle dog and cynomolgus monkey using microRNA sequencing. Conserved microRNA signatures enriched in specific heart structures across these species were identified for cardiac valve (miR-let-7c, miR-125b, miR-127, miR-199a-3p, miR-204, miR-320, miR-99b, miR-328 and miR-744) and myocardium (miR-1, miR-133b, miR-133a, miR-208b, miR-30e, miR-499-5p, miR-30e*). The relative abundance of myocardium-enriched (miR-1) and valve-enriched (miR-125b-5p and miR-204) microRNAs was confirmed using in situ hybridization. MicroRNA-mRNA interactions potentially relevant for cardiac functions were explored using anti-correlation expression analysis and microRNA target prediction algorithms. Interactions between miR-1/Timp3, miR-125b/Rbm24, miR-204/Tgfbr2 and miR-208b/Csnk2a2 were identified and experimentally investigated in human pulmonary smooth muscle cells and luciferase reporter assays. In conclusion, we have generated a high-resolution heart structure-specific mRNA/microRNA expression atlas for three mammalian species that provides a novel resource for investigating novel microRNA regulatory circuits involved in cardiac molecular physiopathology. PMID:23300973

  15. A conserved regulatory mode in exocytic membrane fusion revealed by Mso1p membrane interactions

    PubMed Central

    Weber-Boyvat, Marion; Zhao, Hongxia; Aro, Nina; Yuan, Qiang; Chernov, Konstantin; Peränen, Johan; Lappalainen, Pekka; Jäntti, Jussi

    2013-01-01

    Sec1/Munc18 family proteins are important components of soluble N-ethylmaleimide–sensitive factor attachment protein receptor (SNARE) complex–mediated membrane fusion processes. However, the molecular interactions and the mechanisms involved in Sec1p/Munc18 control and SNARE complex assembly are not well understood. We provide evidence that Mso1p, a Sec1p- and Sec4p-binding protein, interacts with membranes to regulate membrane fusion. We identify two membrane-binding sites on Mso1p. The N-terminal region inserts into the lipid bilayer and appears to interact with the plasma membrane, whereas the C-terminal region of the protein binds phospholipids mainly through electrostatic interactions and may associate with secretory vesicles. The Mso1p membrane interactions are essential for correct subcellular localization of Mso1p–Sec1p complexes and for membrane fusion in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. These characteristics are conserved in the phosphotyrosine-binding (PTB) domain of β-amyloid precursor protein–binding Mint1, the mammalian homologue of Mso1p. Both Mint1 PTB domain and Mso1p induce vesicle aggregation/clustering in vitro, supporting a role in a membrane-associated process. The results identify Mso1p as a novel lipid-interacting protein in the SNARE complex assembly machinery. Furthermore, our data suggest that a general mode of interaction, consisting of a lipid-binding protein, a Rab family GTPase, and a Sec1/Munc18 family protein, is important in all SNARE-mediated membrane fusion events. PMID:23197474

  16. A conserved regulatory mode in exocytic membrane fusion revealed by Mso1p membrane interactions.

    PubMed

    Weber-Boyvat, Marion; Zhao, Hongxia; Aro, Nina; Yuan, Qiang; Chernov, Konstantin; Peränen, Johan; Lappalainen, Pekka; Jäntti, Jussi

    2013-02-01

    Sec1/Munc18 family proteins are important components of soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptor (SNARE) complex-mediated membrane fusion processes. However, the molecular interactions and the mechanisms involved in Sec1p/Munc18 control and SNARE complex assembly are not well understood. We provide evidence that Mso1p, a Sec1p- and Sec4p-binding protein, interacts with membranes to regulate membrane fusion. We identify two membrane-binding sites on Mso1p. The N-terminal region inserts into the lipid bilayer and appears to interact with the plasma membrane, whereas the C-terminal region of the protein binds phospholipids mainly through electrostatic interactions and may associate with secretory vesicles. The Mso1p membrane interactions are essential for correct subcellular localization of Mso1p-Sec1p complexes and for membrane fusion in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. These characteristics are conserved in the phosphotyrosine-binding (PTB) domain of β-amyloid precursor protein-binding Mint1, the mammalian homologue of Mso1p. Both Mint1 PTB domain and Mso1p induce vesicle aggregation/clustering in vitro, supporting a role in a membrane-associated process. The results identify Mso1p as a novel lipid-interacting protein in the SNARE complex assembly machinery. Furthermore, our data suggest that a general mode of interaction, consisting of a lipid-binding protein, a Rab family GTPase, and a Sec1/Munc18 family protein, is important in all SNARE-mediated membrane fusion events. PMID:23197474

  17. Zebrafish eda and edar Mutants Reveal Conserved and Ancestral Roles of Ectodysplasin Signaling in Vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Harris, Matthew P.; Rohner, Nicolas; Schwarz, Heinz; Perathoner, Simon; Konstantinidis, Peter; Nüsslein-Volhard, Christiane

    2008-01-01

    The genetic basis of the development and variation of adult form of vertebrates is not well understood. To address this problem, we performed a mutant screen to identify genes essential for the formation of adult skeletal structures of the zebrafish. Here, we describe the phenotypic and molecular characterization of a set of mutants showing loss of adult structures of the dermal skeleton, such as the rays of the fins and the scales, as well as the pharyngeal teeth. The mutations represent adult-viable, loss of function alleles in the ectodysplasin (eda) and ectodysplasin receptor (edar) genes. These genes are frequently mutated in the human hereditary disease hypohidrotic ectodermal dysplasia (HED; OMIM 224900, 305100) that affects the development of integumentary appendages such as hair and teeth. We find mutations in zebrafish edar that affect similar residues as mutated in human cases of HED and show similar phenotypic consequences. eda and edar are not required for early zebrafish development, but are rather specific for the development of adult skeletal and dental structures. We find that the defects of the fins and scales are due to the role of Eda signaling in organizing epidermal cells into discrete signaling centers of the scale epidermal placode and fin fold. Our genetic analysis demonstrates dose-sensitive and organ-specific response to alteration in levels of Eda signaling. In addition, we show substantial buffering of the effect of loss of edar function in different genetic backgrounds, suggesting canalization of this developmental system. We uncover a previously unknown role of Eda signaling in teleosts and show conservation of the developmental mechanisms involved in the formation and variation of both integumentary appendages and limbs. Lastly, our findings point to the utility of adult genetic screens in the zebrafish in identifying essential developmental processes involved in human disease and in morphological evolution. PMID:18833299

  18. Conservation of protein abundance patterns reveals the regulatory architecture of the EGFR-MAPK pathway.

    PubMed

    Shi, Tujin; Niepel, Mario; McDermott, Jason E; Gao, Yuqian; Nicora, Carrie D; Chrisler, William B; Markillie, Lye M; Petyuk, Vladislav A; Smith, Richard D; Rodland, Karin D; Sorger, Peter K; Qian, Wei-Jun; Wiley, H Steven

    2016-01-01

    Various genetic mutations associated with cancer are known to alter cell signaling, but it is not clear whether they dysregulate signaling pathways by altering the abundance of pathway proteins. Using a combination of RNA sequencing and ultrasensitive targeted proteomics, we defined the primary components-16 core proteins and 10 feedback regulators-of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathway in normal human mammary epithelial cells and then quantified their absolute abundance across a panel of normal and breast cancer cell lines as well as fibroblasts. We found that core pathway proteins were present at very similar concentrations across all cell types, with a variance similar to that of proteins previously shown to display conserved abundances across species. In contrast, EGFR and transcriptionally controlled feedback regulators were present at highly variable concentrations. The absolute abundance of most core proteins was between 50,000 and 70,000 copies per cell, but the adaptors SOS1, SOS2, and GAB1 were found at far lower amounts (2000 to 5000 copies per cell). MAPK signaling showed saturation in all cells between 3000 and 10,000 occupied EGFRs, consistent with the idea that adaptors limit signaling. Our results suggest that the relative stoichiometry of core MAPK pathway proteins is very similar across different cell types, with cell-specific differences mostly restricted to variable amounts of feedback regulators and receptors. The low abundance of adaptors relative to EGFR could be responsible for previous observations that only a fraction of total cell surface EGFR is capable of rapid endocytosis, high-affinity binding, and mitogenic signaling. PMID:27405981

  19. Transcriptomes of the parasitic plant family Orobanchaceae reveal surprising conservation of chlorophyll synthesis.

    PubMed

    Wickett, Norman J; Honaas, Loren A; Wafula, Eric K; Das, Malay; Huang, Kan; Wu, Biao; Landherr, Lena; Timko, Michael P; Yoder, John; Westwood, James H; dePamphilis, Claude W

    2011-12-20

    Parasitism in flowering plants has evolved at least 11 times [1]. Only one family, Orobanchaceae, comprises all major nutritional types of parasites: facultative, hemiparasitic (partially photosynthetic), and holoparasitic (nonphotosynthetic) [2]. Additionally, the family includes Lindenbergia, a nonparasitic genus sister to all parasitic Orobanchaceae [3-6]. Parasitic Orobanchaceae include species with severe economic impacts: Striga (witchweed), for example, affects over 50 million hectares of crops in sub-Saharan Africa, causing more than $3 billion in damage annually [7]. Although gene losses and increased substitution rates have been characterized for parasitic plant plastid genomes [5, 8-11], the nuclear genome and transcriptome remain largely unexplored. The Parasitic Plant Genome Project (PPGP; http://ppgp.huck.psu.edu/) [2] is leveraging the natural variation in Orobanchaceae to explore the evolution and genomic consequences of parasitism in plants through a massive transcriptome and gene discovery project involving Triphysaria versicolor (facultative hemiparasite), Striga hermonthica (obligate hemiparasite), and Phelipanche aegyptiaca (Orobanche [12]; holoparasite). Here we present the first set of large-scale genomic resources for parasitic plant comparative biology. Transcriptomes of above-ground tissues reveal that, in addition to the predictable loss of photosynthesis-related gene expression in P. aegyptiaca, the nonphotosynthetic parasite retains an intact, expressed, and selectively constrained chlorophyll synthesis pathway. PMID:22169535

  20. A microsatellite linkage map of striped bass (Morone saxatilis) reveals conserved synteny with the three-spined stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus).

    PubMed

    Liu, Sixin; Rexroad, Caird E; Couch, Charlene R; Cordes, Jan F; Reece, Kimberly S; Sullivan, Craig V

    2012-04-01

    The striped bass (Morone saxatilis) and its relatives (genus Morone) are of great importance to fisheries and aquaculture in North America. As part of a collaborative effort to employ molecular genetics technologies in striped bass breeding programs, we previously developed nearly 500 microsatellite markers. The objectives of this study were to construct a microsatellite linkage map of striped bass and to examine conserved synteny between striped bass and three-spined stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus). Of 480 microsatellite markers screened for polymorphism, 289 informative markers were identified and used to genotype two half-sib mapping families. Twenty-six linkage groups were assembled, and only two markers remain unlinked. The sex-averaged map spans 1,623.8 cM with an average marker density of 5.78 cM per marker. Among 287 striped bass microsatellite markers assigned to linkage groups, 169 (58.9%) showed homology to sequences on stickleback chromosomes or scaffolds. Comparison between the stickleback genome and the striped bass linkage map revealed conserved synteny between these two species. This is the first linkage map for any of the Morone species. This map will be useful for molecular mapping and marker-assisted selection of genes of interest in striped bass breeding programs. The conserved synteny between striped bass and stickleback will facilitate fine mapping of genome regions of interest and will serve as a new resource for comparative mapping with other Perciform fishes such as European sea bass (Dicentrarchus labrax), gilthead sea bream (Sparus aurata), and tilapia (Oreochromis ssp.). PMID:21968826

  1. Crystal structure of PXY-TDIF complex reveals a conserved recognition mechanism among CLE peptide-receptor pairs

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Heqiao; Lin, Xiaoya; Han, Zhifu; Qu, Li-Jia; Chai, Jijie

    2016-01-01

    Plants can achieve amazing lifespans because of their continuous and repetitive formation of new organs by stem cells present within meristems. The balance between proliferation and differentiation of meristem cells is largely regulated by the CLAVATA3/ENDOSPERM SURROUNDING REGION (CLE) peptide hormones. One of the well-characterized CLE peptides, CLE41/TDIF (tracheary elements differentiation inhibitory factor), functions to suppress tracheary element differentiation and promote procambial cell proliferation, playing important roles in vascular development and wood formation. The recognition mechanisms of TDIF or other CLE peptides by their respective receptors, however, remain largely elusive. Here we report the crystal structure of TDIF in complex with its receptor PXY, a leucine-rich repeat receptor kinase (LRR-RK). Our structure reveals that TDIF mainly adopts an “Ω”-like conformation binding to the inner surface of the LRR domain of PXY. Interaction between TDIF and PXY is predominately mediated by the relatively conserved amino acids of TDIF. Structure-based sequence alignment showed that the TDIF-interacting motifs are also conserved among other known CLE receptors. Our data provide a structural template for understanding the recognition mechanism of CLE peptides by their receptors, offering an opportunity for the identification of receptors of other uncharacterized CLE peptides. PMID:27055373

  2. Crystal structure of PXY-TDIF complex reveals a conserved recognition mechanism among CLE peptide-receptor pairs.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Heqiao; Lin, Xiaoya; Han, Zhifu; Qu, Li-Jia; Chai, Jijie

    2016-05-01

    Plants can achieve amazing lifespans because of their continuous and repetitive formation of new organs by stem cells present within meristems. The balance between proliferation and differentiation of meristem cells is largely regulated by the CLAVATA3/ENDOSPERM SURROUNDING REGION (CLE) peptide hormones. One of the well-characterized CLE peptides, CLE41/TDIF (tracheary elements differentiation inhibitory factor), functions to suppress tracheary element differentiation and promote procambial cell proliferation, playing important roles in vascular development and wood formation. The recognition mechanisms of TDIF or other CLE peptides by their respective receptors, however, remain largely elusive. Here we report the crystal structure of TDIF in complex with its receptor PXY, a leucine-rich repeat receptor kinase (LRR-RK). Our structure reveals that TDIF mainly adopts an "Ω"-like conformation binding to the inner surface of the LRR domain of PXY. Interaction between TDIF and PXY is predominately mediated by the relatively conserved amino acids of TDIF. Structure-based sequence alignment showed that the TDIF-interacting motifs are also conserved among other known CLE receptors. Our data provide a structural template for understanding the recognition mechanism of CLE peptides by their receptors, offering an opportunity for the identification of receptors of other uncharacterized CLE peptides. PMID:27055373

  3. Crystal structures of tubulin acetyltransferase reveal a conserved catalytic core and the plasticity of the essential N terminus.

    PubMed

    Kormendi, Vasilisa; Szyk, Agnieszka; Piszczek, Grzegorz; Roll-Mecak, Antonina

    2012-12-01

    Tubulin acetyltransferase (TAT) acetylates Lys-40 of α-tubulin in the microtubule lumen. TAT is inefficient, and its activity is enhanced when tubulin is incorporated in microtubules. Acetylation is associated with stable microtubules and regulates the binding of microtubule motors and associated proteins. TAT is important in neuronal polarity and mechanosensation, and decreased tubulin acetylation levels are associated with axonal transport defects and neurodegeneration. We present the first structure of TAT in complex with acetyl-CoA (Ac-CoA) at 2.7 Å resolution. The structure reveals a conserved stable catalytic core shared with other GCN5 superfamily acetyltransferases consisting of a central β-sheet flanked by α-helices and a C-terminal β-hairpin unique to TAT. Structure-guided mutagenesis establishes the molecular determinants for Ac-CoA and tubulin substrate recognition. The wild-type TAT construct is a monomer in solution. We identify a metastable interface between the conserved core and N-terminal domain that modulates the oligomerization of TAT in solution and is essential for activity. The 2.45 Å resolution structure of an inactive TAT construct with an active site point mutation near this interface reveals a domain-swapped dimer in which the functionally essential N terminus shows evidence of marked structural plasticity. The sequence segment corresponding to this structurally plastic region in TAT has been implicated in substrate recognition in other GCN5 superfamily acetyltransferases. Our structures provide a rational platform for the mechanistic dissection of TAT activity and the design of TAT inhibitors with therapeutic potential in neuronal regeneration. PMID:23105108

  4. Comparative genomic and functional analysis reveal conservation of plant growth promoting traits in Paenibacillus polymyxa and its closely related species

    PubMed Central

    Xie, Jianbo; Shi, Haowen; Du, Zhenglin; Wang, Tianshu; Liu, Xiaomeng; Chen, Sanfeng

    2016-01-01

    Paenibacillus polymyxa has widely been studied as a model of plant-growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR). Here, the genome sequences of 9 P. polymyxa strains, together with 26 other sequenced Paenibacillus spp., were comparatively studied. Phylogenetic analysis of the concatenated 244 single-copy core genes suggests that the 9 P. polymyxa strains and 5 other Paenibacillus spp., isolated from diverse geographic regions and ecological niches, formed a closely related clade (here it is called Poly-clade). Analysis of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) reveals local diversification of the 14 Poly-clade genomes. SNPs were not evenly distributed throughout the 14 genomes and the regions with high SNP density contain the genes related to secondary metabolism, including genes coding for polyketide. Recombination played an important role in the genetic diversity of this clade, although the rate of recombination was clearly lower than mutation. Some genes relevant to plant-growth promoting traits, i.e. phosphate solubilization and IAA production, are well conserved, while some genes relevant to nitrogen fixation and antibiotics synthesis are evolved with diversity in this Poly-clade. This study reveals that both P. polymyxa and its closely related species have plant growth promoting traits and they have great potential uses in agriculture and horticulture as PGPR. PMID:26856413

  5. Comparative genomic and functional analysis reveal conservation of plant growth promoting traits in Paenibacillus polymyxa and its closely related species.

    PubMed

    Xie, Jianbo; Shi, Haowen; Du, Zhenglin; Wang, Tianshu; Liu, Xiaomeng; Chen, Sanfeng

    2016-01-01

    Paenibacillus polymyxa has widely been studied as a model of plant-growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR). Here, the genome sequences of 9 P. polymyxa strains, together with 26 other sequenced Paenibacillus spp., were comparatively studied. Phylogenetic analysis of the concatenated 244 single-copy core genes suggests that the 9 P. polymyxa strains and 5 other Paenibacillus spp., isolated from diverse geographic regions and ecological niches, formed a closely related clade (here it is called Poly-clade). Analysis of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) reveals local diversification of the 14 Poly-clade genomes. SNPs were not evenly distributed throughout the 14 genomes and the regions with high SNP density contain the genes related to secondary metabolism, including genes coding for polyketide. Recombination played an important role in the genetic diversity of this clade, although the rate of recombination was clearly lower than mutation. Some genes relevant to plant-growth promoting traits, i.e. phosphate solubilization and IAA production, are well conserved, while some genes relevant to nitrogen fixation and antibiotics synthesis are evolved with diversity in this Poly-clade. This study reveals that both P. polymyxa and its closely related species have plant growth promoting traits and they have great potential uses in agriculture and horticulture as PGPR. PMID:26856413

  6. Microscopy-based Saccharomyces cerevisiae complementation model reveals functional conservation and redundancy of N-terminal acetyltransferases.

    PubMed

    Osberg, Camilla; Aksnes, Henriette; Ninzima, Sandra; Marie, Michaël; Arnesen, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    N-terminal acetylation is a highly abundant protein modification catalyzed by N-terminal acetyltransferases (NATs) NatA-NatG. The Saccharomyces cerevisiae protein Arl3 depends on interaction with Sys1 for its localization to the Golgi and this targeting strictly requires NatC-mediated N-terminal acetylation of Arl3. We utilized the Arl3 acetylation-dependent localization phenotype as a model system for assessing the functional conservation and in vivo redundancy of several human NATs. The catalytic subunit of human NatC, hNaa30 (Mak3), restored Arl3 localization in the absence of yNaa30, but only in the presence of either yeast or human Naa35 subunit (Mak10). In contrast, hNaa35 was not able to replace its yeast orthologue without the co-expression of hNaa30, suggesting co-evolution of the two NatC subunits. The most recently discovered and organellar human NAT, NatF/Naa60, restored the Golgi localization of Arl3 in the absence of yNaa30. Interestingly, this was also true for hNaa60 lacking its membrane-binding domain whereas hNaa50 did not complement NatC function. This in vivo redundancy reflects NatC and NatF´s overlapping in vitro substrate specificities. The yeast model presented here provides a robust and rapid readout of NatC and NatF activity in vivo, and revealed evolutionary conservation of the NatC complex and redundancy between NatC and NatF. PMID:27555049

  7. Microscopy-based Saccharomyces cerevisiae complementation model reveals functional conservation and redundancy of N-terminal acetyltransferases

    PubMed Central

    Osberg, Camilla; Aksnes, Henriette; Ninzima, Sandra; Marie, Michaël; Arnesen, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    N-terminal acetylation is a highly abundant protein modification catalyzed by N-terminal acetyltransferases (NATs) NatA-NatG. The Saccharomyces cerevisiae protein Arl3 depends on interaction with Sys1 for its localization to the Golgi and this targeting strictly requires NatC-mediated N-terminal acetylation of Arl3. We utilized the Arl3 acetylation-dependent localization phenotype as a model system for assessing the functional conservation and in vivo redundancy of several human NATs. The catalytic subunit of human NatC, hNaa30 (Mak3), restored Arl3 localization in the absence of yNaa30, but only in the presence of either yeast or human Naa35 subunit (Mak10). In contrast, hNaa35 was not able to replace its yeast orthologue without the co-expression of hNaa30, suggesting co-evolution of the two NatC subunits. The most recently discovered and organellar human NAT, NatF/Naa60, restored the Golgi localization of Arl3 in the absence of yNaa30. Interestingly, this was also true for hNaa60 lacking its membrane-binding domain whereas hNaa50 did not complement NatC function. This in vivo redundancy reflects NatC and NatF´s overlapping in vitro substrate specificities. The yeast model presented here provides a robust and rapid readout of NatC and NatF activity in vivo, and revealed evolutionary conservation of the NatC complex and redundancy between NatC and NatF. PMID:27555049

  8. Combined Use of Systematic Conservation Planning, Species Distribution Modelling, and Connectivity Analysis Reveals Severe Conservation Gaps in a Megadiverse Country (Peru)

    PubMed Central

    Fajardo, Javier; Lessmann, Janeth; Bonaccorso, Elisa; Devenish, Christian; Muñoz, Jesús

    2014-01-01

    Conservation planning is crucial for megadiverse countries where biodiversity is coupled with incomplete reserve systems and limited resources to invest in conservation. Using Peru as an example of a megadiverse country, we asked whether the national system of protected areas satisfies biodiversity conservation needs. Further, to complement the existing reserve system, we identified and prioritized potential conservation areas using a combination of species distribution modeling, conservation planning and connectivity analysis. Based on a set of 2,869 species, including mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles, butterflies, and plants, we used species distribution models to represent species' geographic ranges to reduce the effect of biased sampling and partial knowledge about species' distributions. A site-selection algorithm then searched for efficient and complementary proposals, based on the above distributions, for a more representative system of protection. Finally, we incorporated connectivity among areas in an innovative post-hoc analysis to prioritize those areas maximizing connectivity within the system. Our results highlight severe conservation gaps in the Coastal and Andean regions, and we propose several areas, which are not currently covered by the existing network of protected areas. Our approach helps to find areas that contribute to creating a more representative, connected and efficient network. PMID:25479411

  9. Combined use of systematic conservation planning, species distribution modelling, and connectivity analysis reveals severe conservation gaps in a megadiverse country (Peru).

    PubMed

    Fajardo, Javier; Lessmann, Janeth; Bonaccorso, Elisa; Devenish, Christian; Muñoz, Jesús

    2014-01-01

    Conservation planning is crucial for megadiverse countries where biodiversity is coupled with incomplete reserve systems and limited resources to invest in conservation. Using Peru as an example of a megadiverse country, we asked whether the national system of protected areas satisfies biodiversity conservation needs. Further, to complement the existing reserve system, we identified and prioritized potential conservation areas using a combination of species distribution modeling, conservation planning and connectivity analysis. Based on a set of 2,869 species, including mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles, butterflies, and plants, we used species distribution models to represent species' geographic ranges to reduce the effect of biased sampling and partial knowledge about species' distributions. A site-selection algorithm then searched for efficient and complementary proposals, based on the above distributions, for a more representative system of protection. Finally, we incorporated connectivity among areas in an innovative post-hoc analysis to prioritize those areas maximizing connectivity within the system. Our results highlight severe conservation gaps in the Coastal and Andean regions, and we propose several areas, which are not currently covered by the existing network of protected areas. Our approach helps to find areas that contribute to creating a more representative, connected and efficient network. PMID:25479411

  10. Modular expression analysis reveals functional conservation between human Langerhans cells and mouse cross-priming dendritic cells

    PubMed Central

    Artyomov, Maxim N.; Munk, Adiel; Gorvel, Laurent; Korenfeld, Daniel; Cella, Marina; Tung, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    Characterization of functionally distinct dendritic cell (DC) subsets in mice has fueled interest in whether analogous counterparts exist in humans. Transcriptional modules of coordinately expressed genes were used for defining shared functions between the species. Comparing modules derived from four human skin DC subsets and modules derived from the Immunological Genome Project database for all mouse DC subsets revealed that human Langerhans cells (LCs) and the mouse XCR1+CD8α+CD103+ DCs shared the class I–mediated antigen processing and cross-presentation transcriptional modules that were not seen in mouse LCs. Furthermore, human LCs were enriched in a transcriptional signature specific to the blood cross-presenting CD141/BDCA-3+ DCs, the proposed equivalent to mouse CD8α+ DCs. Consistent with our analysis, LCs were highly adept at inducing primary CTL responses. Thus, our study suggests that the function of LCs may not be conserved between mouse and human and supports human LCs as an especially relevant therapeutic target. PMID:25918340