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Sample records for affecting complex traits

  1. Variants Affecting Exon Skipping Contribute to Complex Traits

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Younghee; Gamazon, Eric R.; Rebman, Ellen; Lee, Yeunsook; Lee, Sanghyuk; Dolan, M. Eileen; Cox, Nancy J.; Lussier, Yves A.

    2012-01-01

    DNA variants that affect alternative splicing and the relative quantities of different gene transcripts have been shown to be risk alleles for some Mendelian diseases. However, for complex traits characterized by a low odds ratio for any single contributing variant, very few studies have investigated the contribution of splicing variants. The overarching goal of this study is to discover and characterize the role that variants affecting alternative splicing may play in the genetic etiology of complex traits, which include a significant number of the common human diseases. Specifically, we hypothesize that single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in splicing regulatory elements can be characterized in silico to identify variants affecting splicing, and that these variants may contribute to the etiology of complex diseases as well as the inter-individual variability in the ratios of alternative transcripts. We leverage high-throughput expression profiling to 1) experimentally validate our in silico predictions of skipped exons and 2) characterize the molecular role of intronic genetic variations in alternative splicing events in the context of complex human traits and diseases. We propose that intronic SNPs play a role as genetic regulators within splicing regulatory elements and show that their associated exon skipping events can affect protein domains and structure. We find that SNPs we would predict to affect exon skipping are enriched among the set of SNPs reported to be associated with complex human traits. PMID:23133393

  2. In search of low-frequency and rare variants affecting complex traits

    PubMed Central

    Panoutsopoulou, Kalliope; Tachmazidou, Ioanna; Zeggini, Eleftheria

    2013-01-01

    The allelic architecture of complex traits is likely to be underpinned by a combination of multiple common frequency and rare variants. Targeted genotyping arrays and next-generation sequencing technologies at the whole-genome sequencing (WGS) and whole-exome scales (WES) are increasingly employed to access sequence variation across the full minor allele frequency (MAF) spectrum. Different study design strategies that make use of diverse technologies, imputation and sample selection approaches are an active target of development and evaluation efforts. Initial insights into the contribution of rare variants in common diseases and medically relevant quantitative traits point to low-frequency and rare alleles acting either independently or in aggregate and in several cases alongside common variants. Studies conducted in population isolates have been successful in detecting rare variant associations with complex phenotypes. Statistical methodologies that enable the joint analysis of rare variants across regions of the genome continue to evolve with current efforts focusing on incorporating information such as functional annotation, and on the meta-analysis of these burden tests. In addition, population stratification, defining genome-wide statistical significance thresholds and the design of appropriate replication experiments constitute important considerations for the powerful analysis and interpretation of rare variant association studies. Progress in addressing these emerging challenges and the accrual of sufficiently large data sets are poised to help the field of complex trait genetics enter a promising era of discovery. PMID:23922232

  3. Trait Affectivity and Nonreferred Adolescent Conduct Problems

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Loney, Bryan R.; Lima, Elizabeth N.; Butler, Melanie A.

    2006-01-01

    This study examined for profiles of positive trait affectivity (PA) and negative trait affectivity (NA) associated with adolescent conduct problems. Prior trait affectivity research has been relatively biased toward the assessment of adults and internalizing symptomatology. Consistent with recent developmental modeling of antisocial behavior, this…

  4. Affected sib-pair interval mapping and exclusion for complex genetic traits: Inferring identity by descent status from relatives

    SciTech Connect

    Hauser, E.R.; Boehnke, M.; Guo, S.W.

    1994-09-01

    Affected sib-pair (ASP) methods provide a useful approach for the initial genetic mapping of complex diseases for which mode of inheritance is uncertain. Risch described a method for interval mapping and exclusion based on the ratio lambda comparing disease risk in the first degree relatives of affected individuals to disease risk in the general population. He assumed marker identity by descent (IBD) status for the ASP could be deduced from parental genotypes. For late onset diseases such as type 2 diabetes, parents may be dead or otherwise unavailable, so that marker IBD status generally cannot be inferred with certainty. Guo has developed efficient methods for probabilistic determination of marker IBD sharing for two or more loci. We have combined and extended the methods of Risch and Guo to carry out interval mapping and exclusion when parents are missing but other relatives such as additional siblings are available. Our method is based on calculating the likelihood of marker data of the ASP and their relatives conditional on the disease status of the ASP, as a function of lambda and the position of the disease locus within the genetic map. We currently are using this method to compare the information to detect or exclude linkage provided by various types of ASP nuclear families -- zero, one, or two typed parents and zero, one, two, or more additional siblings -- as a function of sample size, marker density and informativity, and risk ratio lambda.

  5. Trait Affect and Job Search Outcomes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cote, Stephane; Saks, Alan M.; Zikic, Jelena

    2006-01-01

    The present study examines the role of trait affect in job search. One hundred and twenty-three university students completed measures of positive and negative affectivity, conscientiousness, job search self-efficacy, job search clarity, and job search intensity during their last year of school while on the job market. At the end of the school…

  6. Affective Traits in Schizophrenia and Schizotypy

    PubMed Central

    Horan, William P.; Blanchard, Jack J.; Clark, Lee Anna; Green, Michael F.

    2008-01-01

    This article reviews empirical studies of affective traits in individuals with schizophrenia spectrum disorders, population-based investigations of vulnerability to psychosis, and genetic and psychometric high-risk samples. The review focuses on studies that use self-report trait questionnaires to assess Negative Affectivity (NA) and Positive Affectivity (PA), which are conceptualized in contemporary models of personality as broad, temperamentally-based dispositions to experience corresponding emotional states. Individuals with schizophrenia report a pattern of stably elevated NA and low PA throughout the illness course. Among affected individuals, these traits are associated with variability in several clinically important features, including functional outcome, quality of life, and stress reactivity. Furthermore, evidence that elevated NA and low PA (particularly the facet of anhedonia) predict the development of psychosis and are detectable in high-risk samples suggests that these traits play a role in vulnerability to schizophrenia, though they are implicated in other forms of psychopathology as well. Results are discussed in terms of their implications for treatment, etiological models, and future research to advance the study of affective traits in schizophrenia and schizotypy. PMID:18667393

  7. Interval Mapping of Quantitative Trait Loci Employing Correlated Trait Complexes

    PubMed Central

    Korol, A. B.; Ronin, Y. I.; Kirzhner, V. M.

    1995-01-01

    An approach to increase the resolution power of interval mapping of quantitative trait (QT) loci is proposed, based on analysis of correlated trait complexes. For a given set of QTs, the broad sense heritability attributed to a QT locus (QTL) (say, A/ a) is an increasing function of the number of traits. Thus, for some traits x and y, H(xy)(2) (A/ a) >/= H(x)(2) (A/ a). The last inequality holds even if y does not depend on A/ a at all, but x and y are correlated within the groups AA, Aa and aa due to nongenetic factors and segregation of genes from other chromosomes. A simple relationship connects H(2) (both in single trait and two-trait analysis) with the expected LOD value, ELOD = -1/2N log(1 - H(2)). Thus, situations could exist that from the inequality H(xy)(2) (A/ a) >/= H(x)(2) (A/ a) a higher resolution is provided by the two-trait analysis as compared to the single-trait analysis, in spite of the increased number of parameters. Employing LOD-score procedure to simulated backcross data, we showed that the resolution power of the QTL mapping model can be elevated if correlation between QTs is taken into account. The method allows us to test numerous biologically important hypotheses concerning manifold effects of genomic segments on the defined trait complex (means, variances and correlations). PMID:7672584

  8. Mapping complex traits as a dynamic system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Lidan; Wu, Rongling

    2015-06-01

    Despite increasing emphasis on the genetic study of quantitative traits, we are still far from being able to chart a clear picture of their genetic architecture, given an inherent complexity involved in trait formation. A competing theory for studying such complex traits has emerged by viewing their phenotypic formation as a "system" in which a high-dimensional group of interconnected components act and interact across different levels of biological organization from molecules through cells to whole organisms. This system is initiated by a machinery of DNA sequences that regulate a cascade of biochemical pathways to synthesize endophenotypes and further assemble these endophenotypes toward the end-point phenotype in virtue of various developmental changes. This review focuses on a conceptual framework for genetic mapping of complex traits by which to delineate the underlying components, interactions and mechanisms that govern the system according to biological principles and understand how these components function synergistically under the control of quantitative trait loci (QTLs) to comprise a unified whole. This framework is built by a system of differential equations that quantifies how alterations of different components lead to the global change of trait development and function, and provides a quantitative and testable platform for assessing the multiscale interplay between QTLs and development. The method will enable geneticists to shed light on the genetic complexity of any biological system and predict, alter or engineer its physiological and pathological states.

  9. Systems genetics approaches to understand complex traits

    PubMed Central

    Civelek, Mete; Lusis, Aldons J.

    2014-01-01

    Systems genetics is an approach to understand the flow of biological information that underlies complex traits. It uses a range of experimental and statistical methods to quantitate and integrate intermediate phenotypes, such as transcript, protein or metabolite levels, in populations that vary for traits of interest. Systems genetics studies have provided the first global view of the molecular architecture of complex traits and are useful for the identification of genes, pathways and networks that underlie common human diseases. Given the urgent need to understand how the thousands of loci that have been identified in genome-wide association studies contribute to disease susceptibility, systems genetics is likely to become an increasingly important approach to understanding both biology and disease. PMID:24296534

  10. Explaining additional genetic variation in complex traits

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  11. Incorporating alternative splicing and mRNA editing into the genetic analysis of complex traits

    PubMed Central

    Hassan, Musa A.; Saeij, Jeroen P.J.

    2014-01-01

    The nomination of candidate genes underlying complex traits is often focused on genetic variations that alter mRNA abundance or result in non-conservative changes in amino acids. Although inconspicuous in complex trait analysis, genetic variants that affect splicing or RNA editing can also generate proteomic diversity and impact genetic traits. Indeed it is known that splicing and RNA editing modulate several traits in humans and model organisms. Using high-throughput RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) analysis, it is now possible to integrate the genetics of transcript abundance, alternative splicing and editing with the analysis of complex traits. We recently demonstrated that both alternative splicing and mRNA editing are modulated by genetic and environmental factors, and potentially engender phenotypic diversity in a genetically segregating mouse population. Therefore, the analysis of splicing and RNA editing will expand not only the regulatory landscape of transcriptome and proteome complexity, but also the repertoire of candidate genes for complex traits. PMID:25171292

  12. Genetic and epigenetic contribution to complex traits.

    PubMed

    Kilpinen, Helena; Dermitzakis, Emmanouil T

    2012-10-15

    Much of the recent advances in functional genomics owe to developments in next-generation sequencing technology, which has contributed to the exponential increase of genomic data available for different human disease and population samples. With functional sequencing assays available to query both the transcriptome and the epigenome, annotation of the non-coding, regulatory genome is steadily improving and providing means to interpret the functional consequences of genetic variants associated with human complex traits. This has highlighted the need to better understand the normal variation in various cellular phenotypes, such as epigenetic modifications, and their transgenerational inheritance. In this review, we discuss different aspects of epigenetic variation in the context of DNA sequence variation and its contribution to complex phenotypes.

  13. Affective traits link to reliable neural markers of incentive anticipation.

    PubMed

    Wu, Charlene C; Samanez-Larkin, Gregory R; Katovich, Kiefer; Knutson, Brian

    2014-01-01

    While theorists have speculated that different affective traits are linked to reliable brain activity during anticipation of gains and losses, few have directly tested this prediction. We examined these associations in a community sample of healthy human adults (n=52) as they played a Monetary Incentive Delay task while undergoing functional magnetic resonance imaging (FMRI). Factor analysis of personality measures revealed that subjects independently varied in trait Positive Arousal and trait Negative Arousal. In a subsample (n=14) retested over 2.5years later, left nucleus accumbens (NAcc) activity during anticipation of large gains (+$5.00) and right anterior insula activity during anticipation of large losses (-$5.00) showed significant test-retest reliability (intraclass correlations>0.50, p's<0.01). In the full sample (n=52), trait Positive Arousal correlated with individual differences in left NAcc activity during anticipation of large gains, while trait Negative Arousal correlated with individual differences in right anterior insula activity during anticipation of large losses. Associations of affective traits with neural activity were not attributable to the influence of other potential confounds (including sex, age, wealth, and motion). Together, these results demonstrate selective links between distinct affective traits and reliably-elicited activity in neural circuits associated with anticipation of gain versus loss. The findings thus reveal neural markers for affective dimensions of healthy personality, and potentially for related psychiatric symptoms.

  14. Affective traits link to reliable neural markers of incentive anticipation

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Charlene C.; Samanez-Larkin, Gregory R.; Katovich, Kiefer; Knutson, Brian

    2013-01-01

    While theorists have speculated that different affective traits are linked to reliable brain activity during anticipation of gains and losses, few have directly tested this prediction. We examined these associations in a community sample of healthy human adults (n = 52) as they played a Monetary Incentive Delay Task while undergoing functional magnetic resonance imaging (FMRI). Factor analysis of personality measures revealed that subjects independently varied in trait Positive Arousal and Negative Arousal. In a subsample (n = 14) retested over 2.5 years later, left nucleus accumbens (NAcc) activity during anticipation of large gains (+$5.00) and right anterior insula activity during anticipation of large losses (−$5.00) showed significant test-retest reliability (intraclass correlations > 0.50, p’s < 0.01). In the full sample (n = 52), trait Positive Arousal correlated with individual differences in left NAcc activity during anticipation of large gains, while trait Negative Arousal correlated with individual differences in right anterior insula activity during anticipation of large losses. Associations of affective traits with neural activity were not attributable to the influence of other potential confounds (including sex, age, wealth, and motion). Together, these results demonstrate selective links between distinct affective traits and reliably-elicited activity in neural circuits associated with anticipation of gain versus loss. The findings thus reveal neural markers for affective dimensions of healthy personality, and potentially for related psychiatric symptoms. PMID:24001457

  15. Dissection of complex adult traits in a mouse synthetic population.

    PubMed

    Burke, David T; Kozloff, Kenneth M; Chen, Shu; West, Joshua L; Wilkowski, Jodi M; Goldstein, Steven A; Miller, Richard A; Galecki, Andrzej T

    2012-08-01

    Finding the causative genetic variations that underlie complex adult traits is a significant experimental challenge. The unbiased search strategy of genome-wide association (GWAS) has been used extensively in recent human population studies. These efforts, however, typically find only a minor fraction of the genetic loci that are predicted to affect variation. As an experimental model for the analysis of adult polygenic traits, we measured a mouse population for multiple phenotypes and conducted a genome-wide search for effector loci. Complex adult phenotypes, related to body size and bone structure, were measured as component phenotypes, and each subphenotype was associated with a genomic spectrum of candidate effector loci. The strategy successfully detected several loci for the phenotypes, at genome-wide significance, using a single, modest-sized population (N = 505). The effector loci each explain 2%-10% of the measured trait variation and, taken together, the loci can account for over 25% of a trait's total population variation. A replicate population (N = 378) was used to confirm initially observed loci for one trait (femur length), and, when the two groups were merged, the combined population demonstrated increased power to detect loci. In contrast to human population studies, our mouse genome-wide searches find loci that individually explain a larger fraction of the observed variation. Also, the additive effects of our detected mouse loci more closely match the predicted genetic component of variation. The genetic loci discovered are logical candidates for components of the genetic networks having evolutionary conservation with human biology. PMID:22588897

  16. Watermelon quality traits as affected by ploidy

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Growers offering high quality watermelons [Citrullus lanatus (Thumb.), Matsum & Nakai] that are also high in phytonutrients will have stronger market opportunities. In order to offer highly nutritious fruit, the industry must understand the nature of phytonutrient accumulation as it is affected by ...

  17. The Relationship among Leisure Interests, Personality Traits, Affect, and Mood

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wilkinson, Todd J.; Hansen, Jo-Ida C.

    2006-01-01

    The present study examined relationships between leisure interests and the Big Five personality traits, positive and negative affect, and moods. Regression analysis identified particular personality but not mood or affect variables as significant predictors of leisure factor scores. Further exploration through factor analysis revealed factor…

  18. The Development of the Meta-Affective Trait Scale

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Uzuntiryaki-Kondakci, Esen; Kirbulut, Zubeyde Demet

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to develop a Meta-Affective Trait Scale (MATS) to measure the meta-affective inclinations related to emotions that students have while they are studying for their classes. First, a pilot study was performed with 380 10th-grade students. Results of the exploratory factor analysis supported a two-factor structure of the…

  19. High-resolution genetic mapping of complex traits.

    PubMed Central

    Kruglyak, L; Lander, E S

    1995-01-01

    Positional cloning requires high-resolution genetic mapping. To plan a positional cloning project, one needs to know how many informative meioses will be required to narrow the search for a disease gene to an acceptably small region. For a simple Mendelian trait studied with linkage analysis, the answer is straightforward. In this paper, we address the situation of a complex trait studied with affected-relative-pair methods. We derive mathematical formulas for the size of an appropriate confidence region, as a function of the relative risk attributable to the gene. Using these results, we provide graphs showing the number of relative pairs required to narrow the gene hunt to an interval of a given size. For example, we show that localizing a gene to 1 cM requires a median of 200 sib pairs for a locus causing a fivefold increased risk to an offspring and 700 sib pairs for a locus causing a twofold increased risk. We discuss the implications of these results for the positional cloning of genes underlying complex traits. PMID:7726179

  20. High-resolution genetic mapping of complex traits

    SciTech Connect

    Zruglyak, L.; Lander, E.S. |

    1995-05-01

    Positional cloning requires high-resolution genetic mapping. To plan a positional cloning project, one needs to know how many informative meioses will be required to narrow the search for a disease gene to an acceptably small region. For a simple Mendelian trait studied with linkage analysis, the answer is straightforward. In this paper, we address the situation of a complex trait studied with affected-relative-pair methods. We derive mathematical formulas for the size of an appropriate confidence region, as a function of the relative risk attributable to the gene. Using these results, we provide graphs showing the number of relative pairs required to narrow the gene hunt to an interval of a given size. For example, we show that localizing a gene to a 1 cM requires a median of 200 sib pairs for a locus causing a fivefold increased risk to an offspring and 700 sib pairs for a locus causing a twofold increased risk. We discuss the implications of these results for the positional cloning of genes underlying complex traits. 11 refs., 7 figs., 2 tabs.

  1. A primary screen of the bovine genome for quantitative trait loci affecting carcass and growth traits.

    PubMed

    Stone, R T; Keele, J W; Shackelford, S D; Kappes, S M; Koohmaraie, M

    1999-06-01

    A primary genomic screen for quantitative trait loci (QTL) affecting carcass and growth traits was performed by genotyping 238 microsatellite markers on 185 out of 300 total progeny from a Bos indicus x Bos taurus sire mated to Bos taurus cows. The following traits were analyzed for QTL effects: birth weight (BWT), weaning weight (WW), yearling weight (YW), hot carcass weight (HCW), dressing percentage (DP), fat thickness (FT), marbling score (MAR), longissimus muscle area (LMA), rib bone (RibB), rib fat (RibF), and rib muscle (RibM), and the predicted whole carcass traits, retail product yield (RPYD), fat trim yield (FATYD), bone yield (BOYD), retail product weight (RPWT), fat weight (FATWT), and bone weight (BOWT). Data were analyzed by generating an F-statistic profile computed at 1-cM intervals for each chromosome by the regression of phenotype on the conditional probability of receiving the Brahman allele from the sire. There was compelling evidence for a QTL allele of Brahman origin affecting an increase in RibB and a decrease in DP on chromosome 5 (BTA5). Putative QTL at or just below the threshold for genome-wide significance were as follows: an increase in RPYD and component traits on BTA2 and BTA13, an increase in LMA on BTA14, and an increase in BWT on BTA1. Results provided represent a portion of our efforts to identify and characterize QTL affecting carcass and growth traits. PMID:10375215

  2. Genetic mapping of quantitative trait loci affecting growth and carcass traits in F2 intercross chickens.

    PubMed

    Uemoto, Y; Sato, S; Odawara, S; Nokata, H; Oyamada, Y; Taguchi, Y; Yanai, S; Sasaki, O; Takahashi, H; Nirasawa, K; Kobayashi, E

    2009-03-01

    We constructed a chicken F(2) resource population to facilitate the genetic improvement of economically important traits, particularly growth and carcass traits. An F(2) population comprising 240 chickens obtained by crossing a Shamo (lean, lightweight Japanese native breed) male and White Plymouth Rock breed (fat, heavyweight broiler) females was measured for BW, carcass weight (CW), abdominal fat weight (AFW), breast muscle weight (BMW), and thigh muscle weight (TMW) and was used for genome-wide linkage and QTL analysis, using a total of 240 microsatellite markers. A total of 14 QTL were detected at a 5% chromosome-wide level, and 7 QTL were significant at a 5% experiment-wide level for the traits evaluated in the F(2) population. For growth traits, significant and suggestive QTL affecting BW (measured at 6 and 9 wk) and average daily gain were identified on similar regions of chromosomes 1 and 3. For carcass traits, the QTL effects on CW were detected on chromosomes 1 and 3, with the greatest F-ratio of 15.0 being obtained for CW on chromosome 3. Quantitative trait loci positions affecting BMW and TMW were not detected at the same loci as those detected for BMW percentage of CW and TMW percentage of CW. For AFW, QTL positions were detected at the same loci as those detected for AFW percentage of CW. The present study identified significant QTL affecting BW, CW, and AFW. PMID:19211515

  3. A primary screen of the bovine genome for quantitative trait loci affecting carcass and growth traits.

    PubMed

    Stone, R T; Keele, J W; Shackelford, S D; Kappes, S M; Koohmaraie, M

    1999-06-01

    A primary genomic screen for quantitative trait loci (QTL) affecting carcass and growth traits was performed by genotyping 238 microsatellite markers on 185 out of 300 total progeny from a Bos indicus x Bos taurus sire mated to Bos taurus cows. The following traits were analyzed for QTL effects: birth weight (BWT), weaning weight (WW), yearling weight (YW), hot carcass weight (HCW), dressing percentage (DP), fat thickness (FT), marbling score (MAR), longissimus muscle area (LMA), rib bone (RibB), rib fat (RibF), and rib muscle (RibM), and the predicted whole carcass traits, retail product yield (RPYD), fat trim yield (FATYD), bone yield (BOYD), retail product weight (RPWT), fat weight (FATWT), and bone weight (BOWT). Data were analyzed by generating an F-statistic profile computed at 1-cM intervals for each chromosome by the regression of phenotype on the conditional probability of receiving the Brahman allele from the sire. There was compelling evidence for a QTL allele of Brahman origin affecting an increase in RibB and a decrease in DP on chromosome 5 (BTA5). Putative QTL at or just below the threshold for genome-wide significance were as follows: an increase in RPYD and component traits on BTA2 and BTA13, an increase in LMA on BTA14, and an increase in BWT on BTA1. Results provided represent a portion of our efforts to identify and characterize QTL affecting carcass and growth traits.

  4. The Hidden Complexity of Mendelian Traits across Natural Yeast Populations.

    PubMed

    Hou, Jing; Sigwalt, Anastasie; Fournier, Téo; Pflieger, David; Peter, Jackson; de Montigny, Jacky; Dunham, Maitreya J; Schacherer, Joseph

    2016-07-26

    Mendelian traits are considered to be at the lower end of the complexity spectrum of heritable phenotypes. However, more than a century after the rediscovery of Mendel's law, the global landscape of monogenic variants, as well as their effects and inheritance patterns within natural populations, is still not well understood. Using the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, we performed a species-wide survey of Mendelian traits across a large population of isolates. We generated offspring from 41 unique parental pairs and analyzed 1,105 cross/trait combinations. We found that 8.9% of the cases were Mendelian. Further tracing of causal variants revealed background-specific expressivity and modified inheritances, gradually transitioning from Mendelian to complex traits in 30% of the cases. In fact, when taking into account the natural population diversity, the hidden complexity of traits could be substantial, confounding phenotypic predictability even for simple Mendelian traits. PMID:27396326

  5. Identification of quantitative trait loci affecting cattle temperament.

    PubMed

    Gutiérrez-Gil, Beatriz; Ball, Nia; Burton, Deborah; Haskell, Marie; Williams, John L; Wiener, Pamela

    2008-01-01

    In addition to its potential contribution to improving animal welfare, the study of the genetics of cattle behavior may provide more general insights into the genetic control of such complex traits. We carried out a genome scan in a Holstein x Charolais cross cattle population to identify quantitative trait loci (QTL) influencing temperament-related traits. Individuals belonging to the second-generation of this population (F(2) and backcross individuals) were subjected to 2 behavioral tests. The flight from feeder (FF) test measured the distance at which the animal moved away from an approaching human observer, whereas the social separation (SS) test categorized different activities which the animal engaged in when removed from its penmates. The entire population was genotyped with 165 microsatellite markers. A regression interval mapping analysis identified 29 regions exceeding the 5% chromosome-wide significance level, which individually explained a relatively small fraction of the phenotypic variance of the traits (from 3.8% to 8.4%). One of the significant associations influencing an FF test trait on chromosome 29 reached the 5% genome-wide significance level. Eight other QTL, all associated with an SS test trait, reached the 1% chromosome-wide significance level. The location of some QTL coincided with other previously reported temperament QTL in cattle, whereas those that are reported for the first time here may represent general loci controlling temperament differences between cattle breeds. No overlapping QTL were identified for the traits measured by the 2 different tests, supporting the hypothesis that different genetic factors influence behavioral responses to different situations.

  6. Assessing the impact of transgenerational epigenetic variation on complex traits.

    PubMed

    Johannes, Frank; Porcher, Emmanuelle; Teixeira, Felipe K; Saliba-Colombani, Vera; Simon, Matthieu; Agier, Nicolas; Bulski, Agnès; Albuisson, Juliette; Heredia, Fabiana; Audigier, Pascal; Bouchez, David; Dillmann, Christine; Guerche, Philippe; Hospital, Frédéric; Colot, Vincent

    2009-06-01

    Loss or gain of DNA methylation can affect gene expression and is sometimes transmitted across generations. Such epigenetic alterations are thus a possible source of heritable phenotypic variation in the absence of DNA sequence change. However, attempts to assess the prevalence of stable epigenetic variation in natural and experimental populations and to quantify its impact on complex traits have been hampered by the confounding effects of DNA sequence polymorphisms. To overcome this problem as much as possible, two parents with little DNA sequence differences, but contrasting DNA methylation profiles, were used to derive a panel of epigenetic Recombinant Inbred Lines (epiRILs) in the reference plant Arabidopsis thaliana. The epiRILs showed variation and high heritability for flowering time and plant height ( approximately 30%), as well as stable inheritance of multiple parental DNA methylation variants (epialleles) over at least eight generations. These findings provide a first rationale to identify epiallelic variants that contribute to heritable variation in complex traits using linkage or association studies. More generally, the demonstration that numerous epialleles across the genome can be stable over many generations in the absence of selection or extensive DNA sequence variation highlights the need to integrate epigenetic information into population genetics studies.

  7. Complex approaches to study complex trait genetics in multiple sclerosis.

    PubMed

    Kálmán, Bernadette

    2014-09-30

    Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a complex trait disorder defined by several genes and their interactions with environmental factors. A comprehensive exploration of the susceptibility variants had not been feasible until recently when new developments in biotechnology and bioinformatics made possible sequencing of the whole human genome, cataloguing of nucleotide variants and alignments of these variants in haplotypes. Earlier observations from epidemiological, candidate gene and linkage studies provided ample evidence to support a complex genetic determination of MS. New biotechnology and bioinformatics resources have been recently applied to further successful explorations of the disease. These efforts were paralleled by more careful and reliable ascertainments of disease phenotypes, collaborations among specialized centers to generate sufficient sample size and involvement of clinician-scientists capable of working both on the clinical and scientific study sides. Data obtained from the whole genome association studies (GWAS) elevated our understanding of MS genetics to a new level by identifying an extensive list of genetic determinants. Pathway analyses of MS-associated variants provided evidence to support the immune etiology of the disease. Future research will likely explore how environmental factors interact with the genome, and contribute to the abnormal immune activation and inflammation. This review summarizes the outcomes of MS genetic explorations including those of recent GWAS, and highlights practical consequences of genetic and genomic studies by pointing out as to how the derived data facilitate further elucidation of MS pathogenesis. A better understanding of disease processes is necessary for future advancements in therapeutics and the development of disease prevention strategies.

  8. Personality and morphological traits affect pigeon survival from raptor attacks

    PubMed Central

    Santos, Carlos D.; Cramer, Julia F.; Pârâu, Liviu G.; Miranda, Ana C.; Wikelski, Martin; Dechmann, Dina K. N.

    2015-01-01

    Personality traits have recently been shown to impact fitness in different animal species, potentially making them similarly relevant drivers as morphological and life history traits along the evolutionary pathways of organisms. Predation is a major force of natural selection through its deterministic effects on individual survival, but how predation pressure has helped to shape personality trait selection, especially in free-ranging animals, remains poorly understood. We used high-precision GPS tracking to follow whole flocks of homing pigeons (Columba livia) with known personalities and morphology during homing flights where they were severely predated by raptors. This allowed us to determine how the personality and morphology traits of pigeons may affect their risk of being predated by raptors. Our survival model showed that individual pigeons, which were more tolerant to human approach, slower to escape from a confined environment, more resistant to human handling, with larger tarsi, and with lighter plumage, were more likely to be predated by raptors. We provide rare empirical evidence that the personality of prey influences their risk of being predated under free-ranging circumstances. PMID:26489437

  9. Personality and morphological traits affect pigeon survival from raptor attacks.

    PubMed

    Santos, Carlos D; Cramer, Julia F; Pârâu, Liviu G; Miranda, Ana C; Wikelski, Martin; Dechmann, Dina K N

    2015-10-22

    Personality traits have recently been shown to impact fitness in different animal species, potentially making them similarly relevant drivers as morphological and life history traits along the evolutionary pathways of organisms. Predation is a major force of natural selection through its deterministic effects on individual survival, but how predation pressure has helped to shape personality trait selection, especially in free-ranging animals, remains poorly understood. We used high-precision GPS tracking to follow whole flocks of homing pigeons (Columba livia) with known personalities and morphology during homing flights where they were severely predated by raptors. This allowed us to determine how the personality and morphology traits of pigeons may affect their risk of being predated by raptors. Our survival model showed that individual pigeons, which were more tolerant to human approach, slower to escape from a confined environment, more resistant to human handling, with larger tarsi, and with lighter plumage, were more likely to be predated by raptors. We provide rare empirical evidence that the personality of prey influences their risk of being predated under free-ranging circumstances.

  10. Quantitative trait loci affecting reproductive phenology in peach

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The reproductive phenology of perennial plants in temperate climates is largely conditioned by the duration of bud dormancy, and fruit developmental processes. Bud dormancy release and bud break depends on the perception of cumulative chilling and heat during the bud development. The objective of this work was to identify new quantitative trait loci (QTLs) associated to temperature requirements for bud dormancy release and flowering and to fruit harvest date, in a segregating population of peach. Results We have identified QTLs for nine traits related to bud dormancy, flowering and fruit harvest in an intraspecific hybrid population of peach in two locations differing in chilling time accumulation. QTLs were located in a genetic linkage map of peach based on single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers for eight linkage groups (LGs) of the peach genome sequence. QTLs for chilling requirements for dormancy release and blooming clustered in seven different genomic regions that partially coincided with loci identified in previous works. The most significant QTL for chilling requirements mapped to LG1, close to the evergrowing locus. QTLs for heat requirement related traits were distributed in nine genomic regions, four of them co-localizing with QTLs for chilling requirement trait. Two major loci in LG4 and LG6 determined fruit harvest time. Conclusions We identified QTLs associated to nine traits related to the reproductive phenology in peach. A search of candidate genes for these QTLs rendered different genes related to flowering regulation, chromatin modification and hormone signalling. A better understanding of the genetic factors affecting crop phenology might help scientists and breeders to predict changes in genotype performance in a context of global climate change. PMID:24559033

  11. Genotypic and phenotypic variation in transmission traits of a complex life cycle parasite

    PubMed Central

    Louhi, Katja-Riikka; Karvonen, Anssi; Rellstab, Christian; Jokela, Jukka

    2013-01-01

    Characterizing genetic variation in parasite transmission traits and its contribution to parasite vigor is essential for understanding the evolution of parasite life-history traits. We measured genetic variation in output, activity, survival, and infection success of clonal transmission stages (cercaria larvae) of a complex life cycle parasite (Diplostomum pseudospathaceum). We further tested if variation in host nutritional stage had an effect on these traits by keeping hosts on limited or ad libitum diet. The traits we measured were highly variable among parasite genotypes indicating significant genetic variation in these life-history traits. Traits were also phenotypically variable, for example, there was significant variation in the measured traits over time within each genotype. However, host nutritional stage had no effect on the parasite traits suggesting that a short-term reduction in host resources was not limiting the cercarial output or performance. Overall, these results suggest significant interclonal and phenotypic variation in parasite transmission traits that are not affected by host nutritional status. PMID:23919156

  12. Implicit Processing of Visual Emotions Is Affected by Sound-Induced Affective States and Individual Affective Traits

    PubMed Central

    Quarto, Tiziana; Blasi, Giuseppe; Pallesen, Karen Johanne; Bertolino, Alessandro; Brattico, Elvira

    2014-01-01

    The ability to recognize emotions contained in facial expressions are affected by both affective traits and states and varies widely between individuals. While affective traits are stable in time, affective states can be regulated more rapidly by environmental stimuli, such as music, that indirectly modulate the brain state. Here, we tested whether a relaxing or irritating sound environment affects implicit processing of facial expressions. Moreover, we investigated whether and how individual traits of anxiety and emotional control interact with this process. 32 healthy subjects performed an implicit emotion processing task (presented to subjects as a gender discrimination task) while the sound environment was defined either by a) a therapeutic music sequence (MusiCure), b) a noise sequence or c) silence. Individual changes in mood were sampled before and after the task by a computerized questionnaire. Additionally, emotional control and trait anxiety were assessed in a separate session by paper and pencil questionnaires. Results showed a better mood after the MusiCure condition compared with the other experimental conditions and faster responses to happy faces during MusiCure compared with angry faces during Noise. Moreover, individuals with higher trait anxiety were faster in performing the implicit emotion processing task during MusiCure compared with Silence. These findings suggest that sound-induced affective states are associated with differential responses to angry and happy emotional faces at an implicit stage of processing, and that a relaxing sound environment facilitates the implicit emotional processing in anxious individuals. PMID:25072162

  13. Pedigree models for complex human traits involving the mitochrondrial genome

    SciTech Connect

    Schork, N.J.; Guo, S.W. )

    1993-12-01

    Recent biochemical and molecular-genetic discoveries concerning variations in human mtDNA have suggested a role for mtDNA mutations in a number of human traits and disorders. Although the importance of these discoveries cannot be emphasized enough, the complex natures of mitochondrial biogenesis, mutant mtDNA phenotype expression, and the maternal inheritance pattern exhibited by mtDNA transmission make it difficult to develop models that can be used routinely in pedigree analyses to quantify and test hypotheses about the role of mtDNA in the expression of a trait. In the present paper, the authors describe complexities inherent in mitochondrial biogenesis and genetic transmission and show how these complexities can be incorporated into appropriate mathematical models. The authors offer a variety of likelihood-based models which account for the complexities discussed. The derivation of the models is meant to stimulate the construction of statistical tests for putative mtDNA contribution to a trait. Results of simulation studies which make use of the proposed models are described. The results of the simulation studies suggest that, although pedigree models of mtDNA effects can be reliable, success in mapping chromosomal determinants of a trait does not preclude the possibility that mtDNA determinants exist for the trait as well. Shortcomings inherent in the proposed models are described in an effort to expose areas in need of additional research. 58 refs., 5 figs., 2 tabs.

  14. Network Diversity and Affect Dynamics: The Role of Personality Traits

    PubMed Central

    Alshamsi, Aamena; Pianesi, Fabio; Lepri, Bruno; Pentland, Alex; Rahwan, Iyad

    2016-01-01

    People divide their time unequally among their social contacts due to time constraints and varying strength of relationships. It was found that high diversity of social communication, dividing time more evenly among social contacts, is correlated with economic well-being both at macro and micro levels. Besides economic well-being, it is not clear how the diversity of social communication is also associated with the two components of individuals’ subjective well-being, positive and negative affect. Specifically, positive affect and negative affect are two independent dimensions representing the experience (feeling) of emotions. In this paper, we investigate the relationship between the daily diversity of social communication and dynamic affect states that people experience in their daily lives. We collected two high-resolution datasets that capture affect scores via daily experience sampling surveys and social interaction through wearable sensing technologies: sociometric badges for face-to-face interaction and smart phones for mobile phone calls. We found that communication diversity correlates with desirable affect states–e.g. an increase in the positive affect state or a decrease in the negative affect state–for some personality types, but correlates with undesirable affect states for others. For example, diversity in phone calls is experienced as good by introverts, but bad by extroverts; diversity in face-to-face interaction is experienced as good by people who tend to be positive by nature (trait) but bad for people who tend to be not positive by nature. More broadly, the moderating effect of personality type on the relationship between diversity and affect was detected without any knowledge of the type of social tie or the content of communication. This provides further support for the power of unobtrusive sensing in understanding social dynamics, and in measuring the effect of potential interventions designed to improve well-being. PMID:27035904

  15. Network Diversity and Affect Dynamics: The Role of Personality Traits.

    PubMed

    Alshamsi, Aamena; Pianesi, Fabio; Lepri, Bruno; Pentland, Alex; Rahwan, Iyad

    2016-01-01

    People divide their time unequally among their social contacts due to time constraints and varying strength of relationships. It was found that high diversity of social communication, dividing time more evenly among social contacts, is correlated with economic well-being both at macro and micro levels. Besides economic well-being, it is not clear how the diversity of social communication is also associated with the two components of individuals' subjective well-being, positive and negative affect. Specifically, positive affect and negative affect are two independent dimensions representing the experience (feeling) of emotions. In this paper, we investigate the relationship between the daily diversity of social communication and dynamic affect states that people experience in their daily lives. We collected two high-resolution datasets that capture affect scores via daily experience sampling surveys and social interaction through wearable sensing technologies: sociometric badges for face-to-face interaction and smart phones for mobile phone calls. We found that communication diversity correlates with desirable affect states--e.g. an increase in the positive affect state or a decrease in the negative affect state--for some personality types, but correlates with undesirable affect states for others. For example, diversity in phone calls is experienced as good by introverts, but bad by extroverts; diversity in face-to-face interaction is experienced as good by people who tend to be positive by nature (trait) but bad for people who tend to be not positive by nature. More broadly, the moderating effect of personality type on the relationship between diversity and affect was detected without any knowledge of the type of social tie or the content of communication. This provides further support for the power of unobtrusive sensing in understanding social dynamics, and in measuring the effect of potential interventions designed to improve well-being.

  16. Network Diversity and Affect Dynamics: The Role of Personality Traits.

    PubMed

    Alshamsi, Aamena; Pianesi, Fabio; Lepri, Bruno; Pentland, Alex; Rahwan, Iyad

    2016-01-01

    People divide their time unequally among their social contacts due to time constraints and varying strength of relationships. It was found that high diversity of social communication, dividing time more evenly among social contacts, is correlated with economic well-being both at macro and micro levels. Besides economic well-being, it is not clear how the diversity of social communication is also associated with the two components of individuals' subjective well-being, positive and negative affect. Specifically, positive affect and negative affect are two independent dimensions representing the experience (feeling) of emotions. In this paper, we investigate the relationship between the daily diversity of social communication and dynamic affect states that people experience in their daily lives. We collected two high-resolution datasets that capture affect scores via daily experience sampling surveys and social interaction through wearable sensing technologies: sociometric badges for face-to-face interaction and smart phones for mobile phone calls. We found that communication diversity correlates with desirable affect states--e.g. an increase in the positive affect state or a decrease in the negative affect state--for some personality types, but correlates with undesirable affect states for others. For example, diversity in phone calls is experienced as good by introverts, but bad by extroverts; diversity in face-to-face interaction is experienced as good by people who tend to be positive by nature (trait) but bad for people who tend to be not positive by nature. More broadly, the moderating effect of personality type on the relationship between diversity and affect was detected without any knowledge of the type of social tie or the content of communication. This provides further support for the power of unobtrusive sensing in understanding social dynamics, and in measuring the effect of potential interventions designed to improve well-being. PMID:27035904

  17. Two-trait-locus linkage analysis: A powerful strategy for mapping complex genetic traits

    SciTech Connect

    Schork, N.J.; Boehnke, M. ); Terwilliger, J.D.; Ott, J. )

    1993-11-01

    Nearly all diseases mapped to date follow clear Mendelian, single-locus segregation patterns. In contrast, many common familial diseases such as diabetes, psoriasis, several forms of cancer, and schizophrenia are familial and appear to have a genetic component but do not exhibit simple Mendelian transmission. More complex models are required to explain the genetics of these important diseases. In this paper, the authors explore two-trait-locus, two-marker-locus linkage analysis in which two trait loci are mapped simultaneously to separate genetic markers. The authors compare the utility of this approach to standard one-trait-locus, one-marker-locus linkage analysis with and without allowance for heterogeneity. The authors also compare the utility of the two-trait-locus, two-marker-locus analysis to two-trait-locus, one-marker-locus linkage analysis. For common diseases, pedigrees are often bilineal, with disease genes entering via two or more unrelated pedigree members. Since such pedigrees often are avoided in linkage studies, the authors also investigate the relative information content of unilineal and bilineal pedigrees. For the dominant-or-recessive and threshold models that the authors consider, the authors find that two-trait-locus, two-marker-locus linkage analysis can provide substantially more linkage information, as measured by expected maximum lod score, than standard one-trait-locus, one-marker-locus methods, even allowing for heterogeneity, while, for a dominant-or-dominant generating model, one-locus models that allow for heterogeneity extract essentially as much information as the two-trait-locus methods. For these three models, the authors also find that bilineal pedigrees provide sufficient linkage information to warrant their inclusion in such studies. The authors discuss strategies for assessing the significance of the two linkages assumed in two-trait-locus, two-marker-locus models. 37 refs., 1 fig., 4 tabs.

  18. Quantitative genomics: exploring the genetic architecture of complex trait predisposition.

    PubMed

    Pomp, D; Allan, M F; Wesolowski, S R

    2004-01-01

    Most phenotypes with agricultural or biomedical relevance are multifactorial traits controlled by complex contributions of genetics and environment. Genetic predisposition results from combinations of relatively small effects due to variations within a large number of genes, known as QTL. Well over 200 QTL have been reported for growth and body composition traits in the mouse, which likely represent at least 50 to 100 distinct genes. Molecular biology has yielded significant advances in understanding these traits at the metabolic and physiological levels; however, little has been learned regarding the identity and nature of the underlying polygenes. In addition to the significantly poor precision inherent to QTL localization, it is very difficult to differentiate between co-localization and coincidence when comparing QTL with other QTL and with potential candidate genes. The wide gap between our knowledge of physiological mechanisms underlying complex traits and the nature of genetic predisposition significantly impairs discovery of genes underlying QTL. Identification and genetic mapping of key transcriptional, proteomic, metabolomic, and endocrine events will uncover large lists of significant positional candidate genes for growth and body composition. However, integration of experimental approaches to jointly evaluate predisposition and physiology will increase success of QTL identification by merging the power of recombination with functional analysis. Measuring physiologically relevant subphenotypes within a structured QTL mapping population will not only facilitate pathway-specific prioritization among candidate genes, but may also directly identify genes underlying QTL. This would advance our understanding of the genetic architecture of complex traits by testing the central hypothesis that genes controlling predisposition to a quantitative trait are primarily involved in trans-regulation of the primary physiological pathways that regulate the trait. PMID

  19. Epistasis and natural selection shape the mutational architecture of complex traits.

    PubMed

    Jones, Adam G; Bürger, Reinhard; Arnold, Stevan J

    2014-05-14

    The evolutionary trajectories of complex traits are constrained by levels of genetic variation as well as genetic correlations among traits. As the ultimate source of all genetic variation is mutation, the distribution of mutations entering populations profoundly affects standing variation and genetic correlations. Here we use an individual-based simulation model to investigate how natural selection and gene interactions (that is, epistasis) shape the evolution of mutational processes affecting complex traits. We find that the presence of epistasis allows natural selection to mould the distribution of mutations, such that mutational effects align with the selection surface. Consequently, novel mutations tend to be more compatible with the current forces of selection acting on the population. These results suggest that in many cases mutational effects should be seen as an outcome of natural selection rather than as an unbiased source of genetic variation that is independent of other evolutionary processes.

  20. Poly-omic prediction of complex traits: OmicKriging.

    PubMed

    Wheeler, Heather E; Aquino-Michaels, Keston; Gamazon, Eric R; Trubetskoy, Vassily V; Dolan, M Eileen; Huang, R Stephanie; Cox, Nancy J; Im, Hae Kyung

    2014-07-01

    High-confidence prediction of complex traits such as disease risk or drug response is an ultimate goal of personalized medicine. Although genome-wide association studies have discovered thousands of well-replicated polymorphisms associated with a broad spectrum of complex traits, the combined predictive power of these associations for any given trait is generally too low to be of clinical relevance. We propose a novel systems approach to complex trait prediction, which leverages and integrates similarity in genetic, transcriptomic, or other omics-level data. We translate the omic similarity into phenotypic similarity using a method called Kriging, commonly used in geostatistics and machine learning. Our method called OmicKriging emphasizes the use of a wide variety of systems-level data, such as those increasingly made available by comprehensive surveys of the genome, transcriptome, and epigenome, for complex trait prediction. Furthermore, our OmicKriging framework allows easy integration of prior information on the function of subsets of omics-level data from heterogeneous sources without the sometimes heavy computational burden of Bayesian approaches. Using seven disease datasets from the Wellcome Trust Case Control Consortium (WTCCC), we show that OmicKriging allows simple integration of sparse and highly polygenic components yielding comparable performance at a fraction of the computing time of a recently published Bayesian sparse linear mixed model method. Using a cellular growth phenotype, we show that integrating mRNA and microRNA expression data substantially increases performance over either dataset alone. Using clinical statin response, we show improved prediction over existing methods. We provide an R package to implement OmicKriging (http://www.scandb.org/newinterface/tools/OmicKriging.html).

  1. Poly-Omic Prediction of Complex Traits: OmicKriging

    PubMed Central

    Wheeler, Heather E.; Aquino-Michaels, Keston; Gamazon, Eric R.; Trubetskoy, Vassily V.; Dolan, M. Eileen; Huang, R. Stephanie; Cox, Nancy J.; Im, Hae Kyung

    2014-01-01

    High-confidence prediction of complex traits such as disease risk or drug response is an ultimate goal of personalized medicine. Although genome-wide association studies have discovered thousands of well-replicated polymorphisms associated with a broad spectrum of complex traits, the combined predictive power of these associations for any given trait is generally too low to be of clinical relevance. We propose a novel systems approach to complex trait prediction, which leverages and integrates similarity in genetic, transcriptomic, or other omics-level data. We translate the omic similarity into phenotypic similarity using a method called Kriging, commonly used in geostatistics and machine learning. Our method called OmicKriging emphasizes the use of a wide variety of systems-level data, such as those increasingly made available by comprehensive surveys of the genome, transcriptome, and epigenome, for complex trait prediction. Furthermore, our OmicKriging framework allows easy integration of prior information on the function of subsets of omics-level data from heterogeneous sources without the sometimes heavy computational burden of Bayesian approaches. Using seven disease datasets from the Wellcome Trust Case Control Consortium (WTCCC), we show that OmicKriging allows simple integration of sparse and highly polygenic components yielding comparable performance at a fraction of the computing time of a recently published Bayesian sparse linear mixed model method. Using a cellular growth phenotype, we show that integrating mRNA and microRNA expression data substantially increases performance over either dataset alone. Using clinical statin response, we show improved prediction over existing methods. PMID:24799323

  2. Embryonic yolk removal affects a suite of larval salamander life history traits.

    PubMed

    Landberg, Tobias

    2014-01-01

    Egg size is a key life history trait affecting fitness, and it varies abundantly. The value of egg size to a mother and her offspring is often determined by a trade-off between investing more yolk in a few large eggs or less yolk into many more, smaller eggs. Smaller eggs are generally expected to be phenotypically inferior or females could increase their fitness by making more smaller eggs. However, many females produce a mix of egg sizes and natural yolk variation induces normal developmental responses which may persist into subsequent stages of a complex life history. Since sources of phenotypic variation are easily confounded, I surgically removed yolk from embryonic spotted salamanders (Ambystoma maculatum) using a sham surgery as a control and a split-clutch design to isolate the effects of yolk reserve variation from genetic sources of variation. Yolk removal induced early hatching, reduced developmental stage and hatchling body size. Small hatchlings stayed relatively small through the early larval period, but 17 weeks later the correlation with early larval body size was lost. When the experiment ended, larger individuals were further along in metamorphic development but mortality was independent of early larval body size. Variation in spotted salamander yolk reserves affects a suite of hatchling life history traits that persists into the larval period. Outside the laboratory, egg size effects may cascade throughout complex amphibian life histories. Applied experimentally and comparatively, this simple yolk removal technique may help identify how traits increase or decrease their response to maternal yolk investment.

  3. Self-reported affective traits and current affective experiences of biological relatives of people with schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Docherty, Anna R; Sponheim, Scott R; Kerns, John G

    2015-02-01

    Schizophrenia is characterized by self-reported trait anhedonia but intact hedonic responses during laboratory experiments. Affective traits of first-degree biological relatives may be similar to those of people with schizophrenia, and measures of hedonic response in relatives may be free of antipsychotic medication or cognitive confounds. Relatives also self-report increased anhedonia, yet it is unclear whether, like in patients, this anhedonia is paired with largely intact hedonic self-report. In this study, first-degree relatives of people with schizophrenia (n=33) and nonpsychiatric controls (n=25) completed a wide range of questionnaires and tasks assessing social and physical anhedonia, positive and negative affective experience, and anticipatory and consummatory pleasure. Valence, intensity, frequency, and the arousal of current emotion were assessed. Extraversion and current positive and negative affective state were also examined in relation to self-reported social anhedonia. Relatives evidenced the same disjunction of increased self-reported anhedonia and intact affective response observed in people with schizophrenia. Group differences in anhedonia were not better accounted for by decreased current positive affect, increased current negative affect, or decreased extraversion in relatives. Results suggest that, like people with schizophrenia, first-degree relatives report intact hedonic response on both questionnaire and laboratory measures despite significant elevations in self-reported social anhedonia.

  4. The evolution of quantitative traits in complex environments

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, J T; Wagner, M R; Rushworth, C A; Prasad, K V S K; Mitchell-Olds, T

    2014-01-01

    Species inhabit complex environments and respond to selection imposed by numerous abiotic and biotic conditions that vary in both space and time. Environmental heterogeneity strongly influences trait evolution and patterns of adaptive population differentiation. For example, heterogeneity can favor local adaptation, or can promote the evolution of plastic genotypes that alter their phenotypes based on the conditions they encounter. Different abiotic and biotic agents of selection can act synergistically to either accelerate or constrain trait evolution. The environmental context has profound effects on quantitative genetic parameters. For instance, heritabilities measured in controlled conditions often exceed those measured in the field; thus, laboratory experiments could overestimate the potential for a population to respond to selection. Nevertheless, most studies of the genetic basis of ecologically relevant traits are conducted in simplified laboratory environments, which do not reflect the complexity of nature. Here, we advocate for manipulative field experiments in the native ranges of plant species that differ in mating system, life-history strategy and growth form. Field studies are vital to evaluate the roles of disparate agents of selection, to elucidate the targets of selection and to develop a nuanced perspective on the evolution of quantitative traits. Quantitative genetics field studies will also shed light on the potential for natural populations to adapt to novel climates in highly fragmented landscapes. Drawing from our experience with the ecological model system Boechera (Brassicaceae), we discuss advancements possible through dedicated field studies, highlight future research directions and examine the challenges associated with field studies. PMID:23612691

  5. The evolution of quantitative traits in complex environments.

    PubMed

    Anderson, J T; Wagner, M R; Rushworth, C A; Prasad, K V S K; Mitchell-Olds, T

    2014-01-01

    Species inhabit complex environments and respond to selection imposed by numerous abiotic and biotic conditions that vary in both space and time. Environmental heterogeneity strongly influences trait evolution and patterns of adaptive population differentiation. For example, heterogeneity can favor local adaptation, or can promote the evolution of plastic genotypes that alter their phenotypes based on the conditions they encounter. Different abiotic and biotic agents of selection can act synergistically to either accelerate or constrain trait evolution. The environmental context has profound effects on quantitative genetic parameters. For instance, heritabilities measured in controlled conditions often exceed those measured in the field; thus, laboratory experiments could overestimate the potential for a population to respond to selection. Nevertheless, most studies of the genetic basis of ecologically relevant traits are conducted in simplified laboratory environments, which do not reflect the complexity of nature. Here, we advocate for manipulative field experiments in the native ranges of plant species that differ in mating system, life-history strategy and growth form. Field studies are vital to evaluate the roles of disparate agents of selection, to elucidate the targets of selection and to develop a nuanced perspective on the evolution of quantitative traits. Quantitative genetics field studies will also shed light on the potential for natural populations to adapt to novel climates in highly fragmented landscapes. Drawing from our experience with the ecological model system Boechera (Brassicaceae), we discuss advancements possible through dedicated field studies, highlight future research directions and examine the challenges associated with field studies.

  6. Coevolution Drives the Emergence of Complex Traits and Promotes Evolvability

    PubMed Central

    Zaman, Luis; Meyer, Justin R.; Devangam, Suhas; Bryson, David M.; Lenski, Richard E.; Ofria, Charles

    2014-01-01

    The evolution of complex organismal traits is obvious as a historical fact, but the underlying causes—including the role of natural selection—are contested. Gould argued that a random walk from a necessarily simple beginning would produce the appearance of increasing complexity over time. Others contend that selection, including coevolutionary arms races, can systematically push organisms toward more complex traits. Methodological challenges have largely precluded experimental tests of these hypotheses. Using the Avida platform for digital evolution, we show that coevolution of hosts and parasites greatly increases organismal complexity relative to that otherwise achieved. As parasites evolve to counter the rise of resistant hosts, parasite populations retain a genetic record of past coevolutionary states. As a consequence, hosts differentially escape by performing progressively more complex functions. We show that coevolution's unique feedback between host and parasite frequencies is a key process in the evolution of complexity. Strikingly, the hosts evolve genomes that are also more phenotypically evolvable, similar to the phenomenon of contingency loci observed in bacterial pathogens. Because coevolution is ubiquitous in nature, our results support a general model whereby antagonistic interactions and natural selection together favor both increased complexity and evolvability. PMID:25514332

  7. Coevolution drives the emergence of complex traits and promotes evolvability.

    PubMed

    Zaman, Luis; Meyer, Justin R; Devangam, Suhas; Bryson, David M; Lenski, Richard E; Ofria, Charles

    2014-12-01

    The evolution of complex organismal traits is obvious as a historical fact, but the underlying causes--including the role of natural selection--are contested. Gould argued that a random walk from a necessarily simple beginning would produce the appearance of increasing complexity over time. Others contend that selection, including coevolutionary arms races, can systematically push organisms toward more complex traits. Methodological challenges have largely precluded experimental tests of these hypotheses. Using the Avida platform for digital evolution, we show that coevolution of hosts and parasites greatly increases organismal complexity relative to that otherwise achieved. As parasites evolve to counter the rise of resistant hosts, parasite populations retain a genetic record of past coevolutionary states. As a consequence, hosts differentially escape by performing progressively more complex functions. We show that coevolution's unique feedback between host and parasite frequencies is a key process in the evolution of complexity. Strikingly, the hosts evolve genomes that are also more phenotypically evolvable, similar to the phenomenon of contingency loci observed in bacterial pathogens. Because coevolution is ubiquitous in nature, our results support a general model whereby antagonistic interactions and natural selection together favor both increased complexity and evolvability.

  8. Dissecting Complex Traits Using the Drosophila Synthetic Population Resource

    PubMed Central

    Long, Anthony D.; Macdonald, Stuart J.; King, Elizabeth G.

    2014-01-01

    For most complex traits we have a poor understanding of the positions, phenotypic effects, and population frequencies of the underlying genetic variants contributing to their variation. Recently, several groups have developed multi-parent advanced intercross mapping panels in different model organisms in an attempt to improve our ability to characterize causative genetic variants. These panels are powerful and are particularly well suited to the dissection of phenotypic variation generated by rare alleles and loci segregating multiple functional alleles. We describe studies using one such panel, the Drosophila Synthetic Population Resource, and the implications for our understanding of the genetic basis of complex traits. In particular, we note that many loci of large effect appear to be multiallelic. If multiallelism is a general rule, analytical approaches designed to identify multiallelic variants should be a priority for both genome wide association studies and multi-parental panels. PMID:25175100

  9. Effectiveness of Shrinkage and Variable Selection Methods for the Prediction of Complex Human Traits using Data from Distantly Related Individuals

    PubMed Central

    Pérez‐Rodríguez, Paulino; Veturi, Yogasudha; Simianer, Henner; de los Campos, Gustavo

    2015-01-01

    Summary Genome‐wide association studies (GWAS) have detected large numbers of variants associated with complex human traits and diseases. However, the proportion of variance explained by GWAS‐significant single nucleotide polymorphisms has been usually small. This brought interest in the use of whole‐genome regression (WGR) methods. However, there has been limited research on the factors that affect prediction accuracy (PA) of WGRs when applied to human data of distantly related individuals. Here, we examine, using real human genotypes and simulated phenotypes, how trait complexity, marker‐quantitative trait loci (QTL) linkage disequilibrium (LD), and the model used affect the performance of WGRs. Our results indicated that the estimated rate of missing heritability is dependent on the extent of marker‐QTL LD. However, this parameter was not greatly affected by trait complexity. Regarding PA our results indicated that: (a) under perfect marker‐QTL LD WGR can achieve moderately high prediction accuracy, and with simple genetic architectures variable selection methods outperform shrinkage procedures and (b) under imperfect marker‐QTL LD, variable selection methods can achieved reasonably good PA with simple or moderately complex genetic architectures; however, the PA of these methods deteriorated as trait complexity increases and with highly complex traits variable selection and shrinkage methods both performed poorly. This was confirmed with an analysis of human height. PMID:25600682

  10. A model for transgenerational imprinting variation in complex traits.

    PubMed

    Wang, Chenguang; Wang, Zhong; Luo, Jiangtao; Li, Qin; Li, Yao; Ahn, Kwangmi; Prows, Daniel R; Wu, Rongling

    2010-07-14

    Despite the fact that genetic imprinting, i.e., differential expression of the same allele due to its different parental origins, plays a pivotal role in controlling complex traits or diseases, the origin, action and transmission mode of imprinted genes have still remained largely unexplored. We present a new strategy for studying these properties of genetic imprinting with a two-stage reciprocal F mating design, initiated with two contrasting inbred lines. This strategy maps quantitative trait loci that are imprinted (i.e., iQTLs) based on their segregation and transmission across different generations. By incorporating the allelic configuration of an iQTL genotype into a mixture model framework, this strategy provides a path to trace the parental origin of alleles from previous generations. The imprinting effects of iQTLs and their interactions with other traditionally defined genetic effects, expressed in different generations, are estimated and tested by implementing the EM algorithm. The strategy was used to map iQTLs responsible for survival time with four reciprocal F populations and test whether and how the detected iQTLs inherit their imprinting effects into the next generation. The new strategy will provide a tool for quantifying the role of imprinting effects in the creation and maintenance of phenotypic diversity and elucidating a comprehensive picture of the genetic architecture of complex traits and diseases.

  11. Be Happy, Don't Wait: The Role of Trait Affect in Job Search

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Turban, Daniel B.; Lee, Felissa K.; Veiga, Serge P. da Motta; Haggard, Dana L.; Wu, Sharon Y.

    2013-01-01

    In this study we developed and tested a self-regulatory model of trait affect in job search. Specifically, we theorized that trait positive and negative affect would influence both motivation control and procrastination, and these mediating variables would, in turn, influence job search outcomes through job search intensity. Using longitudinal…

  12. Contribution of large region joint associations to complex traits genetics.

    PubMed

    Paré, Guillaume; Asma, Senay; Deng, Wei Q

    2015-04-01

    A polygenic model of inheritance, whereby hundreds or thousands of weakly associated variants contribute to a trait's heritability, has been proposed to underlie the genetic architecture of complex traits. However, relatively few genetic variants have been positively identified so far and they collectively explain only a small fraction of the predicted heritability. We hypothesized that joint association of multiple weakly associated variants over large chromosomal regions contributes to complex traits variance. Confirmation of such regional associations can help identify new loci and lead to a better understanding of known ones. To test this hypothesis, we first characterized the ability of commonly used genetic association models to identify large region joint associations. Through theoretical derivation and simulation, we showed that multivariate linear models where multiple SNPs are included as independent predictors have the most favorable association profile. Based on these results, we tested for large region association with height in 3,740 European participants from the Health and Retirement Study (HRS) study. Adjusting for SNPs with known association with height, we demonstrated clustering of weak associations (p = 2x10-4) in regions extending up to 433.0 Kb from known height loci. The contribution of regional associations to phenotypic variance was estimated at 0.172 (95% CI 0.063-0.279; p < 0.001), which compared favorably to 0.129 explained by known height variants. Conversely, we showed that suggestively associated regions are enriched for known height loci. To extend our findings to other traits, we also tested BMI, HDLc and CRP for large region associations, with consistent results for CRP. Our results demonstrate the presence of large region joint associations and suggest these can be used to pinpoint weakly associated SNPs. PMID:25856144

  13. Callous-unemotional traits are associated with deficits in recognizing complex emotions in preadolescent children.

    PubMed

    Sharp, Carla; Vanwoerden, Salome; Van Baardewijk, Y; Tackett, J L; Stegge, H

    2015-06-01

    The aims of the current study were to show that the affective component of psychopathy (callous-unemotional traits) is related to deficits in recognizing emotions over and above other psychopathy dimensions and to show that this relationship is driven by a specific deficit in recognizing complex emotions more so than basic emotions. The authors administered the Child Eyes Test to assess emotion recognition in a community sample of preadolescent children between the ages of 10 and 12 (N = 417; 53.6% boys). The task required children to identify a broad array of emotions from photographic stimuli depicting the eye region of the face. Stimuli were then divided into complex or basic emotions. Results demonstrated a unique association between callous-unemotional traits and complex emotions, with weaker associations with basic emotion recognition, over and above other dimensions of psychopathy.

  14. The search for Pleiades in trait constellations: functional integration and phenotypic selection in the complex flowers of Morrenia brachystephana (Apocynaceae).

    PubMed

    Baranzelli, M C; Sérsic, A N; Cocucci, A A

    2014-04-01

    Pollinator-mediated natural selection on single traits, such as corolla tube or spur length, has been well documented. However, flower phenotypes are usually complex, and selection is expected to act on several traits that functionally interact rather than on a single isolated trait. Despite the fact that selection on complex phenotypes is expectedly widespread, multivariate selection modelling on such phenotypes still remains under-explored in plants. Species of the subfamily Asclepiadoideae (Apocynaceae) provide an opportunity to study such complex flower contrivances integrated by fine-scaled organs from disparate developmental origin. We studied the correlation structure among linear floral traits (i) by testing a priori morphological, functional or developmental hypotheses among traits and (ii) by exploring the organization of flower covariation, considering alternative expectations of modular organization or whole flower integration through conditional dependence analysis (CDA) and integration matrices. The phenotypic selection approach was applied to determine whether floral traits involved in the functioning of the pollination mechanism were affected by natural selection. Floral integration was low, suggesting that flowers are organized in more than just one correlation pleiad; our hypothetical functional correlation matrix was significantly correlated with the empirical matrix, and the CDA revealed three putative modules. Analyses of phenotypic selection showed significant linear and correlational gradients, lending support to expectations of functional interactions between floral traits. Significant correlational selection gradients found involved traits of different floral whorls, providing evidence for the existence of functional integration across developmental domains.

  15. Social trait judgment and affect recognition from static faces and video vignettes in schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    McIntosh, Lindsey G.; Park, Sohee

    2014-01-01

    Social impairment is a core feature of schizophrenia, present from the pre-morbid stage and predictive of outcome, but the etiology of this deficit remains poorly understood. Successful and adaptive social interactions depend on one’s ability to make rapid and accurate judgments about others in real time. Our surprising ability to form accurate first impressions from brief exposures, known as “thin slices” of behavior has been studied very extensively in healthy participants. We sought to examine affect and social trait judgment from thin slices of static or video stimuli in order to investigate the ability of schizophrenic individuals to form reliable social impressions of others. 21 individuals with schizophrenia (SZ) and 20 matched healthy participants (HC) were asked to identify emotions and social traits for actors in standardized face stimuli as well as brief video clips. Sound was removed from videos to remove all verbal cues. Clinical symptoms in SZ and delusional ideation in both groups were measured. Results showed a general impairment in affect recognition for both types of stimuli in SZ. However, the two groups did not differ in the judgments of trustworthiness, approachability, attractiveness, and intelligence. Interestingly, in SZ, the severity of positive symptoms was correlated with higher ratings of attractiveness, trustworthiness, and approachability. Finally, increased delusional ideation in SZ was associated with a tendency to rate others as more trustworthy, while the opposite was true for HC. These findings suggest that complex social judgments in SZ are affected by symptomatology. PMID:25037526

  16. Social trait judgment and affect recognition from static faces and video vignettes in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    McIntosh, Lindsey G; Park, Sohee

    2014-09-01

    Social impairment is a core feature of schizophrenia, present from the pre-morbid stage and predictive of outcome, but the etiology of this deficit remains poorly understood. Successful and adaptive social interactions depend on one's ability to make rapid and accurate judgments about others in real time. Our surprising ability to form accurate first impressions from brief exposures, known as "thin slices" of behavior has been studied very extensively in healthy participants. We sought to examine affect and social trait judgment from thin slices of static or video stimuli in order to investigate the ability of schizophrenic individuals to form reliable social impressions of others. 21 individuals with schizophrenia (SZ) and 20 matched healthy participants (HC) were asked to identify emotions and social traits for actors in standardized face stimuli as well as brief video clips. Sound was removed from videos to remove all verbal cues. Clinical symptoms in SZ and delusional ideation in both groups were measured. Results showed a general impairment in affect recognition for both types of stimuli in SZ. However, the two groups did not differ in the judgments of trustworthiness, approachability, attractiveness, and intelligence. Interestingly, in SZ, the severity of positive symptoms was correlated with higher ratings of attractiveness, trustworthiness, and approachability. Finally, increased delusional ideation in SZ was associated with a tendency to rate others as more trustworthy, while the opposite was true for HC. These findings suggest that complex social judgments in SZ are affected by symptomatology.

  17. Social trait judgment and affect recognition from static faces and video vignettes in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    McIntosh, Lindsey G; Park, Sohee

    2014-09-01

    Social impairment is a core feature of schizophrenia, present from the pre-morbid stage and predictive of outcome, but the etiology of this deficit remains poorly understood. Successful and adaptive social interactions depend on one's ability to make rapid and accurate judgments about others in real time. Our surprising ability to form accurate first impressions from brief exposures, known as "thin slices" of behavior has been studied very extensively in healthy participants. We sought to examine affect and social trait judgment from thin slices of static or video stimuli in order to investigate the ability of schizophrenic individuals to form reliable social impressions of others. 21 individuals with schizophrenia (SZ) and 20 matched healthy participants (HC) were asked to identify emotions and social traits for actors in standardized face stimuli as well as brief video clips. Sound was removed from videos to remove all verbal cues. Clinical symptoms in SZ and delusional ideation in both groups were measured. Results showed a general impairment in affect recognition for both types of stimuli in SZ. However, the two groups did not differ in the judgments of trustworthiness, approachability, attractiveness, and intelligence. Interestingly, in SZ, the severity of positive symptoms was correlated with higher ratings of attractiveness, trustworthiness, and approachability. Finally, increased delusional ideation in SZ was associated with a tendency to rate others as more trustworthy, while the opposite was true for HC. These findings suggest that complex social judgments in SZ are affected by symptomatology. PMID:25037526

  18. Leaf traits within communities: context may affect the mapping of traits to function.

    PubMed

    Funk, Jennifer L; Cornwell, William K

    2013-09-01

    The leaf economics spectrum (LES) has revolutionized the way many ecologists think about quantifying plant ecological trade-offs. In particular, the LES has connected a clear functional trade-off (long-lived leaves with slow carbon capture vs. short-lived leaves with fast carbon capture) to a handful of easily measured leaf traits. Building on this work, community ecologists are now able to quickly assess species carbon-capture strategies, which may have implications for community-level patterns such as competition or succession. However, there are a number of steps in this logic that require careful examination, and a potential danger arises when interpreting leaf-trait variation among species within communities where trait relationships are weak. Using data from 22 diverse communities, we show that relationships among three common functional traits (photosynthetic rate, leaf nitrogen concentration per mass, leaf mass per area) are weak in communities with low variation in leaf life span (LLS), especially communities dominated by herbaceous or deciduous woody species. However, globally there are few LLS data sets for communities dominated by herbaceous or deciduous species, and more data are needed to confirm this pattern. The context-dependent nature of trait relationships at the community level suggests that leaf-trait variation within communities, especially those dominated by herbaceous and deciduous woody species, should be interpreted with caution. PMID:24279259

  19. Concurrent and Prospective Effects of Psychopathic Traits on Affective and Cognitive Empathy in a Community Sample of Late Adolescents

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brouns, Bart H. J.; de Wied, Minet Annette; Keijsers, Loes; Branje, Susan; van Goozen, Stephanie H. M.; Meeus, Wim H. J.

    2013-01-01

    Background: A deficit in affective rather than cognitive empathy is thought to be central to psychopathic traits. However, empirical evidence for empathy deficits in adolescents with psychopathic traits is limited. We investigated the concurrent and prospective effects of psychopathic traits on affective and cognitive trait empathy in late…

  20. A genome scan for quantitative trait loci affecting body conformation traits in Spanish Churra dairy sheep.

    PubMed

    Gutiérrez-Gil, B; Alvarez, L; de la Fuente, L F; Sanchez, J P; San Primitivo, F; Arranz, J J

    2011-08-01

    A genome scan for chromosomal regions influencing body conformation traits was conducted for a population of Spanish Churra dairy sheep following a daughter design. A total of 739 ewes from 11 half-sib sire families were included in the study. The ewes were scored for the 5 linear traits used in the breeding scheme of the Churra breed to assess body conformation: stature, rear legs-rear view, foot angle, rump width, and general appearance. All the animals, including the 11 sires, were genotyped for 181 microsatellite markers evenly distributed across the 26 sheep autosomes. Using the yield deviations of the raw scores adjusted for fixed factors as phenotypic measurements, a quantitative trait loci (QTL) analysis was performed on the basis of a multi-marker regression method. Seven suggestive QTL were identified on chromosomes Ovis aries (OAR)2, OAR5, OAR16, OAR23, and OAR26, but none reached a genome-wise significance level. Putative QTL were identified for all of the traits analyzed, except for general appearance score. The suggestive QTL showing the highest test statistic influenced rear legs-rear view and was localized on OAR16, close to the growth hormone receptor coding gene, GHR. Some of the putative linkage associations reported here are consistent with previously reported QTL in cattle for similar traits. To the best of our knowledge, this study provides the first report of QTL for body conformation traits in dairy sheep; further studies will be needed to confirm and redefine the linkage associations reported herein. It is expected that future genome-wide association analyses of larger families will help identify genes underlying these putative genetic effects and provide useful markers for marker-assisted selection of such functional traits.

  1. Genetics of personalities: no simple answers for complex traits.

    PubMed

    Tschirren, Barbara; Bensch, Staffan

    2010-02-01

    Identifying the genes that underlie phenotypic variation in natural populations, and assessing the consequences of polymorphisms at these loci for individual fitness are major objectives in evolutionary biology. Yet, with the exception of a few success stories, little progress has been made, and our understanding of the link between genotype and phenotype is still in its infancy. For example, although body length in humans is largely genetically determined, with heritability estimates greater than 0.8, massive genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have only been able to account for a very small proportion of this variation (Gudbjartsson et al. 2008). If it is so difficult to explain the genetics behind relatively 'simple' traits, can we envision that it will at all be possible to find genes underlying complex behavioural traits in wild non-model organisms? Some notable examples suggest that this can indeed be a worthwhile endeavour. Recently, the circadian rhythm gene Clock has been associated with timing of breeding in a wild blue tit population (Johnsen et al. 2007; Liedvogel et al. 2009) and the Pgi gene to variation in dispersal and flight endurance in Glanville fritillary butterflies (Niitepold et al. 2009). A promising candidate gene for influencing complex animal personality traits, also known as behavioural syndromes (Sih et al. 2004), is the dopamine receptor D4 (DRD4) gene. Within the last decade, polymorphisms in this gene have been associated with variation in novelty seeking and exploration behaviour in a range of species, from humans to great tits (Schinka et al. 2002; Fidler et al. 2007). In this issue, Korsten et al. (2010) attempt to replicate this previously observed association in wild-living birds, and test for the generality of the association between DRD4 and personality across a number of European great tit populations.

  2. Rare variants in complex traits: novel identification strategies and the role of de novo mutations.

    PubMed

    Jouan, Loubna; Gauthier, Julie; Dion, Patrick A; Rouleau, Guy A

    2012-01-01

    Following the limited success of linkage and association studies aimed at identifying the genetic causes of common neurodevelopmental syndromes like autism and schizophrenia, complex traits such as these have recently been considered under the 'common disease-rare variant' hypothesis. Prior to this hypothesis, the study of candidate genes has enabled the discovery of rare variants in complex disorders, and in turn some of these variants have highlighted the genetic contribution of de novo variants. De novo variants belong to a subcategory of spontaneous rare variants that are largely associated with sporadic diseases, which include some complex psychiatric disorders where the affected individuals do not transmit the genetic defects they carry because of their reduced reproductive fitness. Interestingly, recent studies have demonstrated the rate of germline de novo mutations to be higher in individuals with complex psychiatric disorders by comparison to what is seen in unaffected control individuals; moreover, de novo mutations carried by affected individuals have generally been more deleterious than those observed in control individuals. Advanced sequencing technologies have recently enabled the undertaking of massive parallel sequencing projects that can cover the entire coding sequences (exome) or genome of several individuals at once. Such advances have thus fostered the emergence of novel genetic hypotheses and ideas to investigate disease-causative genetic variations. The genetic underpinnings of a number of sporadic complex diseases is now becoming partly explained and more major breakthroughs for complex traits genomics should be expected in the near future. PMID:23594499

  3. Mapping of complex traits by single-nucleotide polymorphisms.

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, L P; Aragaki, C; Hsu, L; Quiaoit, F

    1998-01-01

    Molecular geneticists are developing the third-generation human genome map with single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), which can be assayed via chip-based microarrays. One use of these SNP markers is the ability to locate loci that may be responsible for complex traits, via linkage/linkage-disequilibrium analysis. In this communication, we describe a semiparametric method for combined linkage/linkage-disequilibrium analysis using SNP markers. Asymptotic results are obtained for the estimated parameters, and the finite-sample properties are evaluated via a simulation study. We also applied this technique to a simulated genome-scan experiment for mapping a complex trait with two major genes. This experiment shows that separate linkage and linkage-disequilibrium analyses correctly detected the signals of both major genes; but the rates of false-positive signals seem high. When linkage and linkage-disequilibrium signals were combined, the analysis yielded much stronger and clearer signals for the presence of two major genes than did two separate analyses. PMID:9634510

  4. Complex Traits and Simple Systems: An Interview with Leonid Kruglyak.

    PubMed

    Kruglyak, Leonid

    2016-07-01

    The Genetics Society of America's Edward Novitski Prize recognizes an extraordinary level of creativity and intellectual ingenuity in the solution of significant problems in genetics research. The 2016 winner, Leonid Kruglyak, has made innovative contributions to the fields of linkage analysis, population genetics, and genomics, while drawing on a combination of mathematical, computational, and experimental approaches. Among other achievements, his work on statistical standards for genome-wide linkage studies has transformed their experimental design, and the linkage analysis program GENEHUNTER has been used to identify hundreds of human disease loci. Kruglyak's group also pioneered expression quantitative trait locus studies, which enabled variation in global gene expression to shed light on the genetics of complex human diseases. In recent years, his laboratory has focused on using genomic technology to establish Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Caenorhabditis elegans as model organisms for studies of complex genetic variation. PMID:27384025

  5. The effect of pedigree complexity on quantitative trait linkage analysis.

    PubMed

    Dyer, T D; Blangero, J; Williams, J T; Göring, H H; Mahaney, M C

    2001-01-01

    Due to the computational difficulties of performing linkage analysis on large complex pedigrees, most investigators resort to simplifying such pedigrees by some ad hoc strategy. In this paper, we suggest an analytical method to compare the power of various pedigree simplification schemes by using the asymptotic distribution of the likelihood-ratio statistic. We applied the method to the large Hutterine pedigree. Our results indicate that the breaking and reduction of inbreeding loops can greatly diminish the power to localize quantitative trait loci. We also present an efficient Monte Carlo method for estimating identity-by-descent allele sharing in large complex pedigrees. This method is used to facilitate a linkage analysis of serum IgE levels in the Hutterites without simplifying the pedigree.

  6. Genomic prediction of complex human traits: relatedness, trait architecture and predictive meta-models.

    PubMed

    Spiliopoulou, Athina; Nagy, Reka; Bermingham, Mairead L; Huffman, Jennifer E; Hayward, Caroline; Vitart, Veronique; Rudan, Igor; Campbell, Harry; Wright, Alan F; Wilson, James F; Pong-Wong, Ricardo; Agakov, Felix; Navarro, Pau; Haley, Chris S

    2015-07-15

    We explore the prediction of individuals' phenotypes for complex traits using genomic data. We compare several widely used prediction models, including Ridge Regression, LASSO and Elastic Nets estimated from cohort data, and polygenic risk scores constructed using published summary statistics from genome-wide association meta-analyses (GWAMA). We evaluate the interplay between relatedness, trait architecture and optimal marker density, by predicting height, body mass index (BMI) and high-density lipoprotein level (HDL) in two data cohorts, originating from Croatia and Scotland. We empirically demonstrate that dense models are better when all genetic effects are small (height and BMI) and target individuals are related to the training samples, while sparse models predict better in unrelated individuals and when some effects have moderate size (HDL). For HDL sparse models achieved good across-cohort prediction, performing similarly to the GWAMA risk score and to models trained within the same cohort, which indicates that, for predicting traits with moderately sized effects, large sample sizes and familial structure become less important, though still potentially useful. Finally, we propose a novel ensemble of whole-genome predictors with GWAMA risk scores and demonstrate that the resulting meta-model achieves higher prediction accuracy than either model on its own. We conclude that although current genomic predictors are not accurate enough for diagnostic purposes, performance can be improved without requiring access to large-scale individual-level data. Our methodologically simple meta-model is a means of performing predictive meta-analysis for optimizing genomic predictions and can be easily extended to incorporate multiple population-level summary statistics or other domain knowledge.

  7. Consensus Genome-Wide Expression Quantitative Trait Loci and Their Relationship with Human Complex Trait Disease.

    PubMed

    Yu, Chen-Hsin; Pal, Lipika R; Moult, John

    2016-07-01

    Most of the risk loci identified from genome-wide association (GWA) studies do not provide direct information on the biological basis of a disease or on the underlying mechanisms. Recent expression quantitative trait locus (eQTL) association studies have provided information on genetic factors associated with gene expression variation. These eQTLs might contribute to phenotype diversity and disease susceptibility, but interpretation is handicapped by low reproducibility of the expression results. To address this issue, we have generated a set of consensus eQTLs by integrating publicly available data for specific human populations and cell types. Overall, we find over 4000 genes that are involved in high-confidence eQTL relationships. To elucidate the role that eQTLs play in human common diseases, we matched the high-confidence eQTLs to a set of 335 disease risk loci identified from the Wellcome Trust Case Control Consortium GWA study and follow-up studies for 7 human complex trait diseases-bipolar disorder (BD), coronary artery disease (CAD), Crohn's disease (CD), hypertension (HT), rheumatoid arthritis (RA), type 1 diabetes (T1D), and type 2 diabetes (T2D). The results show that the data are consistent with ∼50% of these disease loci arising from an underlying expression change mechanism. PMID:27428252

  8. Interactive effects of trait and state affect on top-down control of attention.

    PubMed

    Hur, Juyoen; Miller, Gregory A; McDavitt, Jenika R B; Spielberg, Jeffrey M; Crocker, Laura D; Infantolino, Zachary P; Towers, David N; Warren, Stacie L; Heller, Wendy

    2015-08-01

    Few studies have investigated how attentional control is affected by transient affective states while taking individual differences in affective traits into consideration. In this study, participants completed a color-word Stroop task immediately after undergoing a positive, neutral or negative affective context manipulation (ACM). Behavioral performance was unaffected by any ACM considered in isolation. For individuals high in trait negative affect (NA), performance was impaired by the negative but not the positive or neutral ACM. Neuroimaging results indicate that activity in primarily top-down control regions of the brain (inferior frontal gyrus and dorsal anterior cingulate cortex) was suppressed in the presence of emotional arousal (both negative and positive ACMs). This effect appears to have been exacerbated or offset by co-occurring activity in other top-down control regions (parietal) and emotion processing regions (orbitofrontal cortex, amygdala and nucleus accumbens) as a function of the valence of state affect (positive or negative) and trait affect (trait NA or trait PA). Neuroimaging results are consistent with behavioral findings. In combination, they indicate both additive and interactive influences of trait and state affect on top-down control of attention. PMID:25556211

  9. Interactive effects of trait and state affect on top-down control of attention.

    PubMed

    Hur, Juyoen; Miller, Gregory A; McDavitt, Jenika R B; Spielberg, Jeffrey M; Crocker, Laura D; Infantolino, Zachary P; Towers, David N; Warren, Stacie L; Heller, Wendy

    2015-08-01

    Few studies have investigated how attentional control is affected by transient affective states while taking individual differences in affective traits into consideration. In this study, participants completed a color-word Stroop task immediately after undergoing a positive, neutral or negative affective context manipulation (ACM). Behavioral performance was unaffected by any ACM considered in isolation. For individuals high in trait negative affect (NA), performance was impaired by the negative but not the positive or neutral ACM. Neuroimaging results indicate that activity in primarily top-down control regions of the brain (inferior frontal gyrus and dorsal anterior cingulate cortex) was suppressed in the presence of emotional arousal (both negative and positive ACMs). This effect appears to have been exacerbated or offset by co-occurring activity in other top-down control regions (parietal) and emotion processing regions (orbitofrontal cortex, amygdala and nucleus accumbens) as a function of the valence of state affect (positive or negative) and trait affect (trait NA or trait PA). Neuroimaging results are consistent with behavioral findings. In combination, they indicate both additive and interactive influences of trait and state affect on top-down control of attention.

  10. PERCEIVED RACISM AND NEGATIVE AFFECT: ANALYSES OF TRAIT AND STATE MEASURES OF AFFECT IN A COMMUNITY SAMPLE.

    PubMed

    Brondolo, Elizabeth; Brady, Nisha; Thompson, Shola; Tobin, Jonathan N; Cassells, Andrea; Sweeney, Monica; McFarlane, Delano; Contrada, Richard J

    2008-02-01

    Racism is a significant psychosocial stressor that is hypothesized to have negative psychological and physical health consequences. The Reserve Capacity Model (Gallo & Matthews, 2003) suggests that low socioeconomic status may influence health through its effects on negative affect. We extend this model to study the effects of racism, examining the association of lifetime perceived racism to trait and daily negative affect. A multiethnic sample of 362 American-born Black and Latino adults completed the Perceived Ethnic Discrimination Questionnaire-Community Version (PEDQ-CV). Trait negative affect was assessed with the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule (PANAS), and state negative affect was measured using ecological momentary assessments (EMA), in the form of an electronic diary. Analyses revealed a significant relationship of lifetime perceived racism to both daily negative affect and trait negative affect, even when controlling for trait hostility and socioeconomic status. The relationship of perceived racism to negative affect was moderated by education, such that the relationships were strongest for those with less than a high school education. The findings support aspects of the Reserve Capacity Model and identify pathways through which perceived racism may affect health status.

  11. Genomic imprinting effects on complex traits in domesticated animal species

    PubMed Central

    O’Doherty, Alan M.; MacHugh, David E.; Spillane, Charles; Magee, David A.

    2015-01-01

    Monoallelically expressed genes that exert their phenotypic effect in a parent-of-origin specific manner are considered to be subject to genomic imprinting, the most well understood form of epigenetic regulation of gene expression in mammals. The observed differences in allele specific gene expression for imprinted genes are not attributable to differences in DNA sequence information, but to specific chemical modifications of DNA and chromatin proteins. Since the discovery of genomic imprinting some three decades ago, over 100 imprinted mammalian genes have been identified and considerable advances have been made in uncovering the molecular mechanisms regulating imprinted gene expression. While most genomic imprinting studies have focused on mouse models and human biomedical disorders, recent work has highlighted the contributions of imprinted genes to complex trait variation in domestic livestock species. Consequently, greater understanding of genomic imprinting and its effect on agriculturally important traits is predicted to have major implications for the future of animal breeding and husbandry. In this review, we discuss genomic imprinting in mammals with particular emphasis on domestic livestock species and consider how this information can be used in animal breeding research and genetic improvement programs. PMID:25964798

  12. Structural Architecture of SNP Effects on Complex Traits

    PubMed Central

    Gamazon, Eric R.; Cox, Nancy J.; Davis, Lea K.

    2014-01-01

    Despite the discovery of copy-number variation (CNV) across the genome nearly 10 years ago, current SNP-based analysis methodologies continue to collapse the homozygous (i.e., A/A), hemizygous (i.e., A/0), and duplicative (i.e., A/A/A) genotype states, treating the genotype variable as irreducible or unaltered by other colocalizing forms of genetic (e.g., structural) variation. Our understanding of common, genome-wide CNVs suggests that the canonical genotype construct might belie the enormous complexity of the genome. Here we present multiple analyses of several phenotypes and provide methods supporting a conceptual shift that embraces the structural dimension of genotype. We comprehensively investigate the impact of the structural dimension of genotype on (1) GWAS methods, (2) interpretation of rare LOF variants, (3) characterization of genomic architecture, and (4) implications for mapping loci involved in complex disease. Taken together, these results argue for the inclusion of a structural dimension and suggest that some portion of the “missing” heritability might be recovered through integration of the structural dimension of SNP effects on complex traits. PMID:25307299

  13. The Impact of Personality Traits on the Affective Category of English Language Learning Strategies

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fazeli, Seyed Hossein

    2011-01-01

    The present study aims at discovering the impact of personality traits in the prediction use of the Affective English Language Learning Strategies (AELLSs) for learners of English as a foreign language. Four instruments were used, which were Adapted Inventory for Affective English Language Learning Strategies based on Affective category of…

  14. Towards deploying genomic selection for improving complex traits in peanut

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Marker-assisted backcrossing (MABC) is an effective approach for improving qualitative traits and has been successfully used to develop improved lines for rust resistance and high oleate trait in peanut. Further efforts are underway to pyramid genomic regions for multiple qualitative traits (rust re...

  15. Revealing how species loss affects ecosystem function: the trait-based Price Equation partition.

    PubMed

    Fox, Jeremy W; Harpole, W Stanley

    2008-01-01

    Species loss can alter ecosystem function. Recent work proposes a general theoretical framework, the "Price Equation partition," for understanding how species loss affects ecosystem functions that comprise the summed contributions of individual species (e.g., primary production). The Price Equation partition shows how the difference in function between a pre-species-loss site and a post-loss site can be partitioned into effects of random loss of species richness (species-richness effect; SRE), nonrandom loss of high- or low-functioning species (species-composition effect; SCE), and post-loss changes in the functional contributions of the remaining species (context-dependence effect; CDE). However, the Price Equation partition is silent on the underlying determinants of species' functional contributions. Here we extend the Price Equation partition by using multiple regression to describe how species' functional contributions depend on species' traits. This allows us to reexpress the SCE and CDE in terms of nonrandom loss of species with particular traits (trait-based SCE), and post-loss changes in species' traits and in the relationship between species' traits and species' functional contributions (trait-based CDE). We apply this new trait-based Price Equation partition to studies of species loss from grassland plant communities and protist microcosm food webs. In both studies, post-loss changes in the relationship between species' traits and their functional contributions alter ecosystem function more than nonrandom loss of species with particular traits. The protist microcosm data also illustrate how the trait-based Price Equation partition can be applied when species' functional contributions depend in part on the traits of other species. To do this, we define "synecological" traits that quantify how unique species are (e.g., in diet) compared to other species. Context dependence in the protist microcosm experiment arises in part because species loss alters the

  16. Examining an affect regulation model of substance abuse in schizophrenia. The role of traits and coping.

    PubMed

    Blanchard, J J; Squires, D; Henry, T; Horan, W P; Bogenschutz, M; Lauriello, J; Bustillo, J

    1999-02-01

    Comorbid substance use disorders occur frequently in schizophrenia with significant detrimental effects to clinical outcome. Unfortunately, attempts to identify factors associated with comorbid substance use disorders (beyond demographic characteristics such as gender) have not been successful. This study examined an affect regulation model of comorbid substance use in schizophrenia with a focus on personality traits and coping. It was hypothesized that maladaptive coping and the traits of negative affect (NA) and disinhibition (DIS), but not trait positive affect (PA), would be associated with greater substance use problems. Thirty-nine patients with schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder completed measures of personality traits, coping, and negative consequences associated with substance use. Traits were differentially associated with coping in that NA and DIS, but not PA, were associated with maladaptive coping including the use of drugs and alcohol to cope with stress. Alternatively, PA, but not DIS or NA, was related to adaptive coping strategies. Individuals high in NA and endorsing the use of drugs and alcohol to cope reported the greatest number of negative consequences from substance use. This finding held after controlling for gender. These results are consistent with an affect regulation model of substance use and suggest the advantage of examining the role of affect, traits, and coping in understanding comorbid substance use in schizophrenia.

  17. Climatic conditions cause complex patterns of covariation between demographic traits in a long-lived raptor.

    PubMed

    Herfindal, Ivar; van de Pol, Martijn; Nielsen, Jan T; Sæther, Bernt-Erik; Møller, Anders P

    2015-05-01

    Environmental variation can induce life-history changes that can last over a large part of the lifetime of an organism. If multiple demographic traits are affected, expected changes in climate may influence environmental covariances among traits in a complex manner. Thus, examining the consequences of environmental fluctuations requires that individual information at multiple life stages is available, which is particularly challenging in long-lived species. Here, we analyse how variation in climatic conditions occurring in the year of hatching of female goshawks Accipiter gentilis (L.) affects age-specific variation in demographic traits and lifetime reproductive success (LRS). LRS decreased with increasing temperature in April in the year of hatching, due to lower breeding frequency and shorter reproductive life span. In contrast, the probability for a female to successfully breed was higher in years with a warm April, but lower LRS of the offspring in these years generated a negative covariance among fecundity rates among generations. The mechanism by which climatic conditions generated cohort effects was likely through influencing the quality of the breeding segment of the population in a given year, as the proportion of pigeons in the diet during the breeding period was positively related to annual and LRS, and the diet of adult females that hatched in warm years contained fewer pigeons. Climatic conditions experienced during different stages of individual life histories caused complex patterns of environmental covariance among demographic traits even across generations. Such environmental covariances may either buffer or amplify impacts of climate change on population growth, emphasizing the importance of considering demographic changes during the complete life history of individuals when predicting the effect of climatic change on population dynamics of long-lived species.

  18. Solitude and cortisol: associations with state and trait affect in daily life.

    PubMed

    Matias, Gabriela P; Nicolson, Nancy A; Freire, Teresa

    2011-03-01

    The social context can impact psychological and physiological functioning. Being alone, in particular, is experienced as more negative on average than being with others, in both normative and pathological populations. This study investigates whether daily solitude is associated with changes in cortisol and, if so, whether momentary and trait affect can explain this relationship. Forty-four female college students used the Experience Sampling Method during a week, completing questionnaires and collecting saliva 8 times daily. Effects of current solitude, affect, and trait affectivity on cortisol were tested with multilevel regression. Cortisol levels were significantly higher when individuals were alone. Although momentary affective states changed during solitude and were also associated with cortisol, they did not fully explain the effects of solitude on cortisol. Trait affectivity moderated the association between solitude and cortisol. Findings may help clarify how daily experience may heighten risk of depression or other negative health outcomes in vulnerable individuals.

  19. Trait Reappraisal Predicts Affective Reactivity to Daily Positive and Negative Events

    PubMed Central

    Gunaydin, Gul; Selcuk, Emre; Ong, Anthony D.

    2016-01-01

    Past research on emotion regulation has provided evidence that cognitive reappraisal predicts reactivity to affective stimuli and challenge tests in laboratory settings. However, little is known about how trait reappraisal might contribute to affective reactivity to everyday positive and negative events. Using a large, life-span sample of adults (N = 1755), the present study addressed this important gap in the literature. Respondents completed a measure of trait reappraisal and reported on their daily experiences of positive and negative events and positive and negative affect for eight consecutive days. Results showed that trait reappraisal predicted lower increases in negative affect in response to daily negative events and lower increases in positive affect in response to daily positive events. These findings advance our understanding of the role of reappraisal in emotion regulation by showing how individual differences in the use of this strategy relate to emotional reactions to both positive and negative events outside the laboratory. PMID:27445954

  20. Predicting complex quantitative traits with Bayesian neural networks: a case study with Jersey cows and wheat

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background In the study of associations between genomic data and complex phenotypes there may be relationships that are not amenable to parametric statistical modeling. Such associations have been investigated mainly using single-marker and Bayesian linear regression models that differ in their distributions, but that assume additive inheritance while ignoring interactions and non-linearity. When interactions have been included in the model, their effects have entered linearly. There is a growing interest in non-parametric methods for predicting quantitative traits based on reproducing kernel Hilbert spaces regressions on markers and radial basis functions. Artificial neural networks (ANN) provide an alternative, because these act as universal approximators of complex functions and can capture non-linear relationships between predictors and responses, with the interplay among variables learned adaptively. ANNs are interesting candidates for analysis of traits affected by cryptic forms of gene action. Results We investigated various Bayesian ANN architectures using for predicting phenotypes in two data sets consisting of milk production in Jersey cows and yield of inbred lines of wheat. For the Jerseys, predictor variables were derived from pedigree and molecular marker (35,798 single nucleotide polymorphisms, SNPS) information on 297 individually cows. The wheat data represented 599 lines, each genotyped with 1,279 markers. The ability of predicting fat, milk and protein yield was low when using pedigrees, but it was better when SNPs were employed, irrespective of the ANN trained. Predictive ability was even better in wheat because the trait was a mean, as opposed to an individual phenotype in cows. Non-linear neural networks outperformed a linear model in predictive ability in both data sets, but more clearly in wheat. Conclusion Results suggest that neural networks may be useful for predicting complex traits using high-dimensional genomic information, a situation

  1. Explicating heterogeneity of complex traits has strong potential for improving GWAS efficiency

    PubMed Central

    Kulminski, Alexander M.; Loika, Yury; Culminskaya, Irina; Arbeev, Konstantin G.; Ukraintseva, Svetlana V.; Stallard, Eric; Yashin, Anatoliy I.

    2016-01-01

    Common strategy of genome-wide association studies (GWAS) relying on large samples faces difficulties, which raise concerns that GWAS have exhausted their potential, particularly for complex traits. Here, we examine the efficiency of the traditional sample-size-centered strategy in GWAS of these traits, and its potential for improvement. The paper focuses on the results of the four largest GWAS meta-analyses of body mass index (BMI) and lipids. We show that just increasing sample size may not make p-values of genetic effects in large (N > 100,000) samples smaller but can make them larger. The efficiency of these GWAS, defined as ratio of the log-transformed p-value to the sample size, in larger samples was larger than in smaller samples for a small fraction of loci. These results emphasize the important role of heterogeneity in genetic associations with complex traits such as BMI and lipids. They highlight the substantial potential for improving GWAS by explicating this role (affecting 11–79% of loci in the selected GWAS), especially the effects of biodemographic processes, which are heavily underexplored in current GWAS and which are important sources of heterogeneity in the various study populations. Further progress in this direction is crucial for efficient use of genetic discoveries in health care. PMID:27739495

  2. Trait Positive Affect Buffers the Effects of Acute Stress on Skin Barrier Recovery

    PubMed Central

    Robles, Theodore F.; Brooks, Kathryn P.; Pressman, Sarah D.

    2010-01-01

    Objective This study examines the role of self-reported trait positive affect (PA) on skin barrier recovery after skin disruption, and whether the role of trait PA in wound healing is consistent with the direct effects model or the stress-buffering model of PA and health. Design Sixty healthy participants (mean age 22.7 ± 3.9 years) completed a self-report measure of trait positive and negative affect, underwent a “tape-stripping” procedure that disrupts normal skin barrier function, and were randomly assigned to a Stress (Trier Social Stress Test) or No Stress (reading task) condition. Main Outcome Measures Skin barrier recovery was assessed by measuring transepidermal water loss up to 2 hr after skin disruption. Results Multilevel modeling indicated that greater trait PA was related to faster skin barrier recovery (p < .05). The effects of PA on skin barrier recovery were independent of levels of trait NA. Conclusion These findings suggest that trait PA may influence skin barrier recovery following a brief stressor. In addition, these results provide additional evidence that trait PA can positively impact objective health outcomes. PMID:19450044

  3. Ensemble learning of QTL models improves prediction of complex traits

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Quantitative trait locus (QTL) models can provide useful insights into trait genetic architecture because of their straightforward interpretability, but are less useful for genetic prediction due to difficulty in including the effects of numerous small effect loci without overfitting. Tight linkage ...

  4. Region and site conditions affect phenotypic trait variation in five forest herbs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lemke, Isgard Holle; Kolb, Annette; Diekmann, Martin Reemt

    2012-02-01

    Phenotypic plasticity is the ability of organisms to express different phenotypes under different environmental conditions. It may buffer individuals both against short-term environmental fluctuations and long-term effects of global change. A plastic behaviour in response to changes in the environment may be especially important in species with low migration rates and colonization capacities, such as in many forest plants in present-day fragmented landscapes. We compared the phenotypic trait variation (used as a proxy for the amount of phenotypic plasticity) of five forest herbs (Brachypodium sylvaticum, Circaea lutetiana, Impatiens noli-tangere, Sanicula europaea and Stachys sylvatica) between two regions in Germany that differ in their overall environmental conditions (Bremen in the northwest, Freiburg in the southwest; 5 species × 2 regions × 8-15 populations × 25-50 individuals). In addition, we measured light intensity and important soil parameters (soil pH, moisture, K, P and N) in all populations. We found consistent differences in trait variability between the two regions in several species. In Brachypodium and Stachys both vegetative and reproductive traits were more variable in Freiburg. Similarly, reproductive traits of Impatiens and Sanicula appeared to be more variable in Freiburg, while in both species at least one of the vegetative traits was more variable in Bremen. Mean local environmental conditions also affected trait variation; in most of the species both vegetative and reproductive traits were more variable in sites with higher nutrient contents and higher light availability. Across all traits and both regions, seed or fruit production was most variable. In summary, at least some of the studied forest herbs appear to respond strongly to large-scale environmental differences, showing a higher trait variability in the more southern region. Given the assumption that phenotypic trait variation is positively associated with phenotypic plasticity

  5. Ecological traits affect the response of tropical forest bird species to land-use intensity.

    PubMed

    Newbold, Tim; Scharlemann, Jörn P W; Butchart, Stuart H M; Sekercioğlu, Cağan H; Alkemade, Rob; Booth, Hollie; Purves, Drew W

    2013-01-01

    Land-use change is one of the main drivers of current and likely future biodiversity loss. Therefore, understanding how species are affected by it is crucial to guide conservation decisions. Species respond differently to land-use change, possibly related to their traits. Using pan-tropical data on bird occurrence and abundance across a human land-use intensity gradient, we tested the effects of seven traits on observed responses. A likelihood-based approach allowed us to quantify uncertainty in modelled responses, essential for applying the model to project future change. Compared with undisturbed habitats, the average probability of occurrence of bird species was 7.8 per cent and 31.4 per cent lower, and abundance declined by 3.7 per cent and 19.2 per cent in habitats with low and high human land-use intensity, respectively. Five of the seven traits tested affected the observed responses significantly: long-lived, large, non-migratory, primarily frugivorous or insectivorous forest specialists were both less likely to occur and less abundant in more intensively used habitats than short-lived, small, migratory, non-frugivorous/insectivorous habitat generalists. The finding that species responses to land use depend on their traits is important for understanding ecosystem functioning, because species' traits determine their contribution to ecosystem processes. Furthermore, the loss of species with particular traits might have implications for the delivery of ecosystem services.

  6. Maize pan-transcriptome provides novel insights into genome complexity and quantitative trait variation

    PubMed Central

    Jin, Minliang; Liu, Haijun; He, Cheng; Fu, Junjie; Xiao, Yingjie; Wang, Yuebin; Xie, Weibo; Wang, Guoying; Yan, Jianbing

    2016-01-01

    Gene expression variation largely contributes to phenotypic diversity and constructing pan-transcriptome is considered necessary for species with complex genomes. However, the regulation mechanisms and functional consequences of pan-transcriptome is unexplored systematically. By analyzing RNA-seq data from 368 maize diverse inbred lines, we identified almost one-third nuclear genes under expression presence and absence variation, which tend to play regulatory roles and are likely regulated by distant eQTLs. The ePAV was directly used as “genotype” to perform GWAS for 15 agronomic phenotypes and 526 metabolic traits to efficiently explore the associations between transcriptomic and phenomic variations. Through a modified assembly strategy, 2,355 high-confidence novel sequences with total 1.9 Mb lengths were found absent within reference genome. Ten randomly selected novel sequences were fully validated with genomic PCR, including another two NBS_LRR candidates potentially affect flavonoids and disease-resistance. A simulation analysis suggested that the pan-transcriptome of the maize whole kernel is approaching a maximum value of 63,000 genes, and through developing two test-cross populations and surveying several most important yield traits, the dispensable genes were shown to contribute to heterosis. Novel perspectives and resources to discover maize quantitative trait variations were provided to better understand the kernel regulation networks and to enhance maize breeding. PMID:26729541

  7. Risk of false positive genetic associations in complex traits with underlying population structure: A case study

    PubMed Central

    Finno, Carrie J.; Aleman, Monica; Higgins, Robert J.; Madigan, John E.; Bannasch, Danika L.

    2015-01-01

    Genome-wide association (GWA) studies are widely used to investigate the genetic etiology of diseases in domestic animals. In the horse, GWA studies using 40–50,000 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in sample sizes of 30–40 individuals, consisting of only 6–14 affected horses, have led to the discovery of genetic mutations for simple monogenic traits. Equine neuroaxonal dystrophy is a common inherited neurological disorder characterized by symmetric ataxia. A case-control GWA study was performed using genotypes from 42,819 SNP marker loci distributed across the genome in 99 clinically phenotyped Quarter horses (37 affected, 62 unaffected). A significant GWA was not achieved although a suggestive association was uncovered when only the most stringently phenotyped NAD-affected horses (n = 10) were included (chromosome 8:62130605 and 62134644 [log(1/P) = 5.56]). Candidate genes (PIK3C3, RIT2, and SYT4) within the associated region were excluded through sequencing, association testing of uncovered variants and quantitative RT-PCR. It was concluded that variants in PIK3C3, RIT2, and SYT4 are not responsible for equine neuroaxonal dystrophy. This study demonstrates the risk of false positive associations when performing GWA studies on complex traits and underlying population structure when using 40–50,000 SNP markers and small sample size. PMID:25278384

  8. Plant traits affecting herbivory on tree recruits in highly diverse subtropical forests.

    PubMed

    Schuldt, Andreas; Bruelheide, Helge; Durka, Walter; Eichenberg, David; Fischer, Markus; Kröber, Wenzel; Härdtle, Werner; Ma, Keping; Michalski, Stefan G; Palm, Wolf-Ulrich; Schmid, Bernhard; Welk, Erik; Zhou, Hongzhang; Assmann, Thorsten

    2012-07-01

    Differences in herbivory among woody species can greatly affect the functioning of forest ecosystems, particularly in species-rich (sub)tropical regions. However, the relative importance of the different plant traits which determine herbivore damage remains unclear. Defence traits can have strong effects on herbivory, but rarely studied geographical range characteristics could complement these effects through evolutionary associations with herbivores. Herein, we use a large number of morphological, chemical, phylogenetic and biogeographical characteristics to analyse interspecific differences in herbivory on tree saplings in subtropical China. Unexpectedly, we found no significant effects of chemical defence traits. Rather, herbivory was related to the plants' leaf morphology, local abundance and climatic niche characteristics, which together explained 70% of the interspecific variation in herbivory in phylogenetic regression. Our study indicates that besides defence traits and apparency to herbivores, previously neglected measures of large-scale geographical host distribution are important factors influencing local herbivory patterns among plant species.

  9. Affective empathy differs in male violent offenders with high- and low-trait psychopathy.

    PubMed

    Pfabigan, Daniela M; Seidel, Eva-Maria; Wucherer, Anna M; Keckeis, Katinka; Derntl, Birgit; Lamm, Claus

    2015-02-01

    This study investigated affective and cognitive empathic processes in incarcerated violent offenders with lower and higher psychopathic traits and healthy controls. Participants witnessed painful expressions of others displayed on video clips. Skin conductance responses (SCR) were recorded to assess autonomic emotional arousal, and various empathy ratings were used as measures of self-reported vicarious responses. Reduced SCRs occurred during the observation of pain in others in lower and higher psychopathic-trait participants alike, compared to controls. Despite these diminished autonomic responses indicating reduced vicarious responses, only inmates with higher psychopathic traits provided empathy ratings comparable to those of the controls. These findings indicate that violent offenders display reduced autonomic arousal in response to distress cues of others, irrespective of psychopathy. However, only higher psychopathic-trait offenders were able to provide self-report in a way that let them appear to be as empathic as controls-enabling them to know, yet not to feel, what others feel. PMID:24932875

  10. Neural Mechanisms of Attentional Control Differentiate Trait and State Negative Affect

    PubMed Central

    Crocker, Laura D.; Heller, Wendy; Spielberg, Jeffrey M.; Warren, Stacie L.; Bredemeier, Keith; Sutton, Bradley P.; Banich, Marie T.; Miller, Gregory A.

    2012-01-01

    The present research examined the hypothesis that cognitive processes are modulated differentially by trait and state negative affect (NA). Brain activation associated with trait and state NA was measured by fMRI during an attentional control task, the emotion-word Stroop. Performance on the task was disrupted only by state NA. Trait NA was associated with reduced activity in several regions, including a prefrontal area that has been shown to be involved in top-down, goal-directed attentional control. In contrast, state NA was associated with increased activity in several regions, including a prefrontal region that has been shown to be involved in stimulus-driven aspects of attentional control. Results suggest that NA has a significant impact on cognition, and that state and trait NA disrupt attentional control in distinct ways. PMID:22934089

  11. Larval traits carry over to affect post-settlement behaviour in a common coral reef fish.

    PubMed

    Dingeldein, Andrea L; White, J Wilson

    2016-07-01

    Most reef fishes begin life as planktonic larvae before settling to the reef, metamorphosing and entering the benthic adult population. Different selective forces determine survival in the planktonic and benthic life stages, but traits established in the larval stage may carry over to affect post-settlement performance. We tested the hypothesis that larval traits affect two key post-settlement fish behaviours: social group-joining and foraging. Certain larval traits of reef fishes are permanently recorded in the rings in their otoliths. In the bluehead wrasse (Thalassoma bifasciatum), prior work has shown that key larval traits recorded in otoliths (growth rate, energetic condition at settlement) carry over to affect post-settlement survival on the reef, with higher-larval-condition fish experiencing less post-settlement mortality. We hypothesized that this selective mortality is mediated by carry-over effects on post-settlement antipredator behaviours. We predicted that better-condition fish would forage less and be more likely to join groups, both behaviours that would reduce predation risk. We collected 550 recently settled bluehead wrasse (Thalassoma bifasciatum) from three reef sites off St. Croix (USVI) and performed two analyses. First, we compared each settler's larval traits to the size of its social group to determine whether larval traits influenced group-joining behaviour. Secondly, we observed foraging behaviour in a subset of grouped and solitary fish (n = 14) for 1-4 days post-settlement. We then collected the fish and tested whether larval traits influenced the proportion of time spent foraging. Body length at settlement, but not condition, affected group-joining behaviour; smaller fish were more likely to remain solitary or in smaller groups. However, both greater length and better condition were associated with greater proportions of time spent foraging over four consecutive days post-settlement. Larval traits carry over to affect post

  12. Trait Mindfulness Modulates Neuroendocrine and Affective Responses to Social Evaluative Threat

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Kirk Warren; Weinstein, Netta; Creswell, J. David

    2016-01-01

    Background Individual differences in mindfulness have been associated with numerous self-report indicators of stress, but research has not examined how mindfulness may buffer neuroendocrine and psychological stress responses under controlled laboratory conditions. The present study investigated the role of trait mindfulness in buffering cortisol and affective responses to a social evaluative stress challenge versus a control task. Methods Participants completed measures of trait mindfulness, perceived stress, anxiety, and fear of negative evaluation before being randomized to complete the Trier Social Stress Test (TSST; Kirschbaum et al., 1993) or a control task. At points throughout the session, participants provided five saliva samples to assess cortisol response patterns, and completed four self-report measures of anxiety and negative affect to assess psychological responses. Results In accord with hypotheses, higher trait mindfulness predicted lower cortisol responses to the TSST, relative to the control task, as well as lower anxiety and negative affect. These relations remained significant when controlling for the role of other variables that predicted cortisol and affective responses. Conclusions The findings suggest that trait mindfulness modulates cortisol and affective responses to an acute social stressor. Further research is needed to understand the neural pathways through which mindfulness impacts these responses. PMID:22626868

  13. Urban habitat complexity affects species richness but not environmental filtering of morphologically-diverse ants.

    PubMed

    Ossola, Alessandro; Nash, Michael A; Christie, Fiona J; Hahs, Amy K; Livesley, Stephen J

    2015-01-01

    Habitat complexity is a major determinant of structure and diversity of ant assemblages. Following the size-grain hypothesis, smaller ant species are likely to be advantaged in more complex habitats compared to larger species. Habitat complexity can act as an environmental filter based on species size and morphological traits, therefore affecting the overall structure and diversity of ant assemblages. In natural and semi-natural ecosystems, habitat complexity is principally regulated by ecological successions or disturbance such as fire and grazing. Urban ecosystems provide an opportunity to test relationships between habitat, ant assemblage structure and ant traits using novel combinations of habitat complexity generated and sustained by human management. We sampled ant assemblages in low-complexity and high-complexity parks, and high-complexity woodland remnants, hypothesizing that (i) ant abundance and species richness would be higher in high-complexity urban habitats, (ii) ant assemblages would differ between low- and high-complexity habitats and (iii) ants living in high-complexity habitats would be smaller than those living in low-complexity habitats. Contrary to our hypothesis, ant species richness was higher in low-complexity habitats compared to high-complexity habitats. Overall, ant assemblages were significantly different among the habitat complexity types investigated, although ant size and morphology remained the same. Habitat complexity appears to affect the structure of ant assemblages in urban ecosystems as previously observed in natural and semi-natural ecosystems. However, the habitat complexity filter does not seem to be linked to ant morphological traits related to body size. PMID:26528416

  14. Urban habitat complexity affects species richness but not environmental filtering of morphologically-diverse ants

    PubMed Central

    Nash, Michael A.; Christie, Fiona J.; Hahs, Amy K.; Livesley, Stephen J.

    2015-01-01

    Habitat complexity is a major determinant of structure and diversity of ant assemblages. Following the size-grain hypothesis, smaller ant species are likely to be advantaged in more complex habitats compared to larger species. Habitat complexity can act as an environmental filter based on species size and morphological traits, therefore affecting the overall structure and diversity of ant assemblages. In natural and semi-natural ecosystems, habitat complexity is principally regulated by ecological successions or disturbance such as fire and grazing. Urban ecosystems provide an opportunity to test relationships between habitat, ant assemblage structure and ant traits using novel combinations of habitat complexity generated and sustained by human management. We sampled ant assemblages in low-complexity and high-complexity parks, and high-complexity woodland remnants, hypothesizing that (i) ant abundance and species richness would be higher in high-complexity urban habitats, (ii) ant assemblages would differ between low- and high-complexity habitats and (iii) ants living in high-complexity habitats would be smaller than those living in low-complexity habitats. Contrary to our hypothesis, ant species richness was higher in low-complexity habitats compared to high-complexity habitats. Overall, ant assemblages were significantly different among the habitat complexity types investigated, although ant size and morphology remained the same. Habitat complexity appears to affect the structure of ant assemblages in urban ecosystems as previously observed in natural and semi-natural ecosystems. However, the habitat complexity filter does not seem to be linked to ant morphological traits related to body size. PMID:26528416

  15. Identifying Coopted Networks and Causative Mutations in the Origin of Novel Complex Traits.

    PubMed

    Monteiro, A; Gupta, M D

    2016-01-01

    One of the central goals of the field of evo-devo is to understand how novel complex traits originate. Novel complex traits are often old, and this makes understanding the genetic basis of their origin difficult. The traditional genetics approach for identifying the causative mutations for trait origin, of crossing species with and without the trait, is often impossible when the species are too distantly related. Alternatively, if the species are closely related, the genetic basis of their differences is often the recent loss, rather than the gain, of the trait in one of them, and mutations resulting in trait loss are not always equivalent to those that led to trait gain. Here, we reexamine an evo-devo study of the origin of melanic spots in the wings of flies, which is presented in more than one mainstream undergraduate textbook on Evolution, as an example of molecular evolution leading to the origin of a novel trait. We put forth an alternative to the previously proposed scenario and, in our view, a more likely evolutionary framework that explains the data, the CRE-DDC model, and then review other case studies and avenues of research that should help identify where new complex traits come from, as well as the actual causative mutations underlying their origin.

  16. Genotype-environment interactions affecting preflowering physiological and morphological traits of Brassica rapa grown in two watering regimes.

    PubMed

    El-Soda, Mohamed; Boer, Martin P; Bagheri, Hedayat; Hanhart, Corrie J; Koornneef, Maarten; Aarts, Mark G M

    2014-02-01

    Plant growth and productivity are greatly affected by drought, which is likely to become more threatening with the predicted global temperature increase. Understanding the genetic architecture of complex quantitative traits and their interaction with water availability may lead to improved crop adaptation to a wide range of environments. Here, the genetic basis of 20 physiological and morphological traits is explored by describing plant performance and growth in a Brassica rapa recombinant inbred line (RIL) population grown on a sandy substrate supplemented with nutrient solution, under control and drought conditions. Altogether, 54 quantitative trait loci (QTL) were identified, of which many colocated in 11 QTL clusters. Seventeen QTL showed significant QTL-environment interaction (Q×E), indicating genetic variation for phenotypic plasticity. Of the measured traits, only hypocotyl length did not show significant genotype-environment interaction (G×E) in both environments in all experiments. Correlation analysis showed that, in the control environment, stomatal conductance was positively correlated with total leaf dry weight (DW) and aboveground DW, whereas in the drought environment, stomatal conductance showed a significant negative correlation with total leaf DW and aboveground DW. This correlation was explained by antagonistic fitness effects in the drought environment, controlled by a QTL cluster on chromosome A7. These results demonstrate that Q×E is an important component of the genetic variance and can play a great role in improving drought tolerance in future breeding programmes.

  17. Genotype-environment interactions affecting preflowering physiological and morphological traits of Brassica rapa grown in two watering regimes.

    PubMed

    El-Soda, Mohamed; Boer, Martin P; Bagheri, Hedayat; Hanhart, Corrie J; Koornneef, Maarten; Aarts, Mark G M

    2014-02-01

    Plant growth and productivity are greatly affected by drought, which is likely to become more threatening with the predicted global temperature increase. Understanding the genetic architecture of complex quantitative traits and their interaction with water availability may lead to improved crop adaptation to a wide range of environments. Here, the genetic basis of 20 physiological and morphological traits is explored by describing plant performance and growth in a Brassica rapa recombinant inbred line (RIL) population grown on a sandy substrate supplemented with nutrient solution, under control and drought conditions. Altogether, 54 quantitative trait loci (QTL) were identified, of which many colocated in 11 QTL clusters. Seventeen QTL showed significant QTL-environment interaction (Q×E), indicating genetic variation for phenotypic plasticity. Of the measured traits, only hypocotyl length did not show significant genotype-environment interaction (G×E) in both environments in all experiments. Correlation analysis showed that, in the control environment, stomatal conductance was positively correlated with total leaf dry weight (DW) and aboveground DW, whereas in the drought environment, stomatal conductance showed a significant negative correlation with total leaf DW and aboveground DW. This correlation was explained by antagonistic fitness effects in the drought environment, controlled by a QTL cluster on chromosome A7. These results demonstrate that Q×E is an important component of the genetic variance and can play a great role in improving drought tolerance in future breeding programmes. PMID:24474811

  18. Genotype–environment interactions affecting preflowering physiological and morphological traits of Brassica rapa grown in two watering regimes

    PubMed Central

    Aarts, Mark G. M.

    2014-01-01

    Plant growth and productivity are greatly affected by drought, which is likely to become more threatening with the predicted global temperature increase. Understanding the genetic architecture of complex quantitative traits and their interaction with water availability may lead to improved crop adaptation to a wide range of environments. Here, the genetic basis of 20 physiological and morphological traits is explored by describing plant performance and growth in a Brassica rapa recombinant inbred line (RIL) population grown on a sandy substrate supplemented with nutrient solution, under control and drought conditions. Altogether, 54 quantitative trait loci (QTL) were identified, of which many colocated in 11 QTL clusters. Seventeen QTL showed significant QTL–environment interaction (Q×E), indicating genetic variation for phenotypic plasticity. Of the measured traits, only hypocotyl length did not show significant genotype–environment interaction (G×E) in both environments in all experiments. Correlation analysis showed that, in the control environment, stomatal conductance was positively correlated with total leaf dry weight (DW) and aboveground DW, whereas in the drought environment, stomatal conductance showed a significant negative correlation with total leaf DW and aboveground DW. This correlation was explained by antagonistic fitness effects in the drought environment, controlled by a QTL cluster on chromosome A7. These results demonstrate that Q×E is an important component of the genetic variance and can play a great role in improving drought tolerance in future breeding programmes. PMID:24474811

  19. Using epigenome-wide association scans of DNA methylation in age-related complex human traits.

    PubMed

    Tsai, Pei-Chien; Spector, Tim D; Bell, Jordana T

    2012-10-01

    With rapid technological advancements emerging epigenetic studies of complex traits have shifted from candidate gene analyses towards epigenome-wide association studies (EWAS). EWAS aim to systematically identify epigenetic variants across the genome that associate with complex phenotypes. Recent EWAS using case-control and disease-discordant identical twin designs have identified phenotype-associated differentially methylated regions for several traits. However, EWAS still face many challenges related to methodology, design and interpretation, owing to the dynamic nature of epigenetic variants over time. This article reviews analytical considerations in conducting EWAS and recent applications of this approach to human aging and age-related complex traits. PMID:23130833

  20. A genome scan for quantitative trait loci affecting resistance to Trichostrongylus colubriformis in sheep.

    PubMed

    Beh, K J; Hulme, D J; Callaghan, M J; Leish, Z; Lenane, I; Windon, R G; Maddox, J F

    2002-04-01

    A genome linkage scan was carried out using a resource flock of 1029 sheep in six half-sib families. The families were offspring of sires derived by crossing divergent lines of sheep selected for response to challenge with the intestinal parasitic nematode Trichostrongylus colubriformis. All animals in the resource flock were phenotypically assessed for worm resistance soon after weaning using a vaccination/challenge regime. After correcting for fixed effects using a least squares linear model the faecal egg count data obtained following the first challenge and the faecal egg count data obtained after the second challenge were designated Trait 1 and Trait 2, respectively. A total of 472 lambs drawn from the phenotypic extremes of the Trait 2 faecal egg count distribution were genotyped with a panel of 133 microsatellite markers covering all 26 sheep autosomes. Detection of quantitative trait loci (QTL) for each of the faecal egg count traits was determined using interval analysis with the Animap program with recombination rates between markers derived from an existing marker map. No chromosomal regions attained genome-wide significance for QTL influencing either of the traits. However, one region attained chromosome-wide significance and five other regions attained point-wise significance for the presence of QTL affecting parasite resistance.

  1. Progress and Promise of Genome-Wide Association Studies for Human Complex Trait Genetics

    PubMed Central

    Stranger, Barbara E.; Stahl, Eli A.; Raj, Towfique

    2011-01-01

    Enormous progress in mapping complex traits in humans has been made in the last 5 yr. There has been early success for prevalent diseases with complex phenotypes. These studies have demonstrated clearly that, while complex traits differ in their underlying genetic architectures, for many common disorders the predominant pattern is that of many loci, individually with small effects on phenotype. For some traits, loci of large effect have been identified. For almost all complex traits studied in humans, the sum of the identified genetic effects comprises only a portion, generally less than half, of the estimated trait heritability. A variety of hypotheses have been proposed to explain why this might be the case, including untested rare variants, and gene–gene and gene–environment interaction. Effort is currently being directed toward implementation of novel analytic approaches and testing rare variants for association with complex traits using imputed variants from the publicly available 1000 Genomes Project resequencing data and from direct resequencing of clinical samples. Through integration with annotations and functional genomic data as well as by in vitro and in vivo experimentation, mapping studies continue to characterize functional variants associated with complex traits and address fundamental issues such as epistasis and pleiotropy. This review focuses primarily on the ways in which genome-wide association studies (GWASs) have revolutionized the field of human quantitative genetics. PMID:21115973

  2. Personality Traits and Positive/Negative Affects: An Analysis of Meaning in Life among Adults

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Isik, Serife; Üzbe, Nazife

    2015-01-01

    This study examines the impact of positive and negative affects and personality traits on meaning in life in an adult population. The sample consisted of 335 subjects: 190 females and 145 males, and a Meaning in Life Questionnaire (MLQ), positive and negative schedule (PANAS), and adjective-based personality scale (ABPT) were used in the research.…

  3. Does trait affectivity predict work-to-family conflict and enrichment beyond job characteristics?

    PubMed

    Tement, Sara; Korunka, Christian

    2013-01-01

    The present study examines whether negative and positive affectivity (NA and PA, respectively) predict different forms of work-to-family conflict (WFC-time, WFC-strain, WFC-behavior) and enrichment (WFE-development, WFE-affect, WFE-capital) beyond job characteristics (workload, autonomy, variety, workplace support). Furthermore, interactions between job characteristics and trait affectivity while predicting WFC and WFE were examined. Using a large sample of Slovenian employees (N = 738), NA and PA were found to explain variance in WFC as well as in WFE above and beyond job characteristics. More precisely, NA significantly predicted WFC, whereas PA significantly predicted WFE. In addition, several interactive effects were found to predict forms of WFC and WFE. These results highlight the importance of trait affectivity in work-family research. They provide further support for the crucial impact of job characteristics as well. PMID:23469478

  4. Does trait affectivity predict work-to-family conflict and enrichment beyond job characteristics?

    PubMed

    Tement, Sara; Korunka, Christian

    2013-01-01

    The present study examines whether negative and positive affectivity (NA and PA, respectively) predict different forms of work-to-family conflict (WFC-time, WFC-strain, WFC-behavior) and enrichment (WFE-development, WFE-affect, WFE-capital) beyond job characteristics (workload, autonomy, variety, workplace support). Furthermore, interactions between job characteristics and trait affectivity while predicting WFC and WFE were examined. Using a large sample of Slovenian employees (N = 738), NA and PA were found to explain variance in WFC as well as in WFE above and beyond job characteristics. More precisely, NA significantly predicted WFC, whereas PA significantly predicted WFE. In addition, several interactive effects were found to predict forms of WFC and WFE. These results highlight the importance of trait affectivity in work-family research. They provide further support for the crucial impact of job characteristics as well.

  5. Trait emotional intelligence and mental distress: the mediating role of positive and negative affect.

    PubMed

    Kong, Feng; Zhao, Jingjing; You, Xuqun

    2012-01-01

    Over the past decade, emotional intelligence (EI) has received much attention in the literature. Previous studies indicated that higher trait or ability EI was associated with greater mental distress. The present study focused on mediating effects of positive and negative affect on the association between trait EI and mental distress in a sample of Chinese adults. The participants were 726 Chinese adults (384 females) with an age range of 18-60 years. Data were collected by using the Wong Law Emotional Intelligence Scale, the Positive Affect and Negative Affect Scale, and the General Health Questionnaire. Hierarchical regression analysis showed that EI was a significant predictor of positive affect, negative affect and mental distress. Further mediation analysis showed that positive and negative affect acted as partial mediators of the relationship between EI and mental distress. Furthermore, effect contrasts showed that there was no significant difference between the specific indirect effects through positive affect and through negative affect. This result indicated that positive affect and negative affect played an equally important function in the association between EI and distress. The significance and limitations of the results are discussed.

  6. Genomic imprinting and parent-of-origin effects on complex traits

    PubMed Central

    Lawson, Heather A.; Cheverud, James M.

    2014-01-01

    Parent-of-origin effects occur when the phenotypic effect of an allele depends on whether it is inherited from an individual’s mother or father. Several phenomena can cause parent-of-origin effects, with the best characterized being parent-of-origin dependent gene expression associated with genomic imprinting. Imprinting plays a critical role in a diversity of biological processes and in certain contexts it structures epigenetic relationships between DNA sequence and phenotypic variation. The development of new mapping approaches applied to the growing abundance of genomic data has demonstrated that imprinted genes can be important contributors to complex trait variation. Therefore, to understand the genetic architecture and evolution of complex traits, including complex diseases and traits of agricultural importance, it is crucial to account for these parent-of-origin effects. Here we discuss patterns of phenotypic variation associated with imprinting, evidence supporting its role in complex trait variation, and approaches for identifying its molecular signatures. PMID:23917626

  7. Integrated translational genomics for analysis of complex traits in sorghum

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We will report on the integration of sequencing and genotype data from natural variation (by whole genome resequencing [wgs] or genotype by sequencing [gbs]), transcriptome (RNA-seq) and mutant analysis (also by wgs) with the goal of identifying genes controlling important agronomic traits and tran...

  8. Ensemble Learning of QTL Models Improves Prediction of Complex Traits

    PubMed Central

    Bian, Yang; Holland, James B.

    2015-01-01

    Quantitative trait locus (QTL) models can provide useful insights into trait genetic architecture because of their straightforward interpretability but are less useful for genetic prediction because of the difficulty in including the effects of numerous small effect loci without overfitting. Tight linkage between markers introduces near collinearity among marker genotypes, complicating the detection of QTL and estimation of QTL effects in linkage mapping, and this problem is exacerbated by very high density linkage maps. Here we developed a thinning and aggregating (TAGGING) method as a new ensemble learning approach to QTL mapping. TAGGING reduces collinearity problems by thinning dense linkage maps, maintains aspects of marker selection that characterize standard QTL mapping, and by ensembling, incorporates information from many more markers-trait associations than traditional QTL mapping. The objective of TAGGING was to improve prediction power compared with QTL mapping while also providing more specific insights into genetic architecture than genome-wide prediction models. TAGGING was compared with standard QTL mapping using cross validation of empirical data from the maize (Zea mays L.) nested association mapping population. TAGGING-assisted QTL mapping substantially improved prediction ability for both biparental and multifamily populations by reducing both the variance and bias in prediction. Furthermore, an ensemble model combining predictions from TAGGING-assisted QTL and infinitesimal models improved prediction abilities over the component models, indicating some complementarity between model assumptions and suggesting that some trait genetic architectures involve a mixture of a few major QTL and polygenic effects. PMID:26276383

  9. Ensemble Learning of QTL Models Improves Prediction of Complex Traits.

    PubMed

    Bian, Yang; Holland, James B

    2015-10-01

    Quantitative trait locus (QTL) models can provide useful insights into trait genetic architecture because of their straightforward interpretability but are less useful for genetic prediction because of the difficulty in including the effects of numerous small effect loci without overfitting. Tight linkage between markers introduces near collinearity among marker genotypes, complicating the detection of QTL and estimation of QTL effects in linkage mapping, and this problem is exacerbated by very high density linkage maps. Here we developed a thinning and aggregating (TAGGING) method as a new ensemble learning approach to QTL mapping. TAGGING reduces collinearity problems by thinning dense linkage maps, maintains aspects of marker selection that characterize standard QTL mapping, and by ensembling, incorporates information from many more markers-trait associations than traditional QTL mapping. The objective of TAGGING was to improve prediction power compared with QTL mapping while also providing more specific insights into genetic architecture than genome-wide prediction models. TAGGING was compared with standard QTL mapping using cross validation of empirical data from the maize (Zea mays L.) nested association mapping population. TAGGING-assisted QTL mapping substantially improved prediction ability for both biparental and multifamily populations by reducing both the variance and bias in prediction. Furthermore, an ensemble model combining predictions from TAGGING-assisted QTL and infinitesimal models improved prediction abilities over the component models, indicating some complementarity between model assumptions and suggesting that some trait genetic architectures involve a mixture of a few major QTL and polygenic effects. PMID:26276383

  10. QTL mapping of complex binary traits in an advanced intercross line.

    PubMed

    Moradi Marjaneh, M; Martin, I C A; Kirk, E P; Harvey, R P; Moran, C; Thomson, P C

    2012-07-01

    An advanced intercross line (AIL) is an easier and more cost-effective approach compared to recombinant inbred lines for fine mapping of quantitative trait loci (QTL) identified by F(2) designs. In an AIL, a complex binary trait can be mapped through analysis of either continuously distributed proxy traits for the liability of the binary trait or the liability itself, the latter presenting the greater statistical challenge. In another work, we successfully applied both approaches in an AIL to fine map previously identified QTL underlying anatomical parameters of the cardiac inter-atrial septum including patent foramen ovale. Here, we describe the statistical methods that we used to analyse complex binary traits in our AIL design. This is achieved using a likelihood-based method, with the expectation-maximisation algorithm allowing use of standard logistic regression methods for model fitting.

  11. Trait and state positive affect and cardiovascular recovery from experimental academic stress.

    PubMed

    Papousek, Ilona; Nauschnegg, Karin; Paechter, Manuela; Lackner, Helmut K; Goswami, Nandu; Schulter, Günter

    2010-02-01

    As compared to negative affect, only a small number of studies have examined influences of positive affect on cardiovascular stress responses, of which only a few were concerned with cardiovascular recovery. In this study, heart rate, low- and high-frequency heart rate variability, blood pressure, and levels of subjectively experienced stress were obtained in 65 students before, during and after exposure to academic stress in an ecologically valid setting. Higher trait positive affect was associated with more complete cardiovascular and subjective post-stress recovery. This effect was independent of negative affect and of affective state during anticipation of the stressor. In contrast, a more positive affective state during anticipation of the challenge was related to poor post-stress recovery. The findings suggest that a temporally stable positive affect disposition may be related to adaptive responses, whereas positive emotional states in the context of stressful events can also contribute to prolonged post-stress recovery.

  12. Copy number variation and susceptibility to complex traits.

    PubMed

    Canales, Cesar P; Walz, Katherina

    2011-01-01

    Copy number variations (CNV) within the genome are extremely abundant. In this closeup, Canales and Walz discuss how CNV are associated with normal variation, genomic disorders, genome evolution, adaptive traits and how the use of a novel screen described by Ermakova et al in this issue that is designed to identify human diseaserelevant phenotypes associated with CNV in the mouse can help elucidating susceptibility or predisposition to diseases loci.

  13. Genetic studies of plasma analytes identify novel potential biomarkers for several complex traits

    PubMed Central

    Deming, Yuetiva; Xia, Jian; Cai, Yefei; Lord, Jenny; Del-Aguila, Jorge L.; Fernandez, Maria Victoria; Carrell, David; Black, Kathleen; Budde, John; Ma, ShengMei; Saef, Benjamin; Howells, Bill; Bertelsen, Sarah; Bailey, Matthew; Ridge, Perry G.; Hefti, Franz; Fillit, Howard; Zimmerman, Earl A.; Celmins, Dzintra; Brown, Alice D.; Carrillo, Maria; Fleisher, Adam; Reeder, Stephanie; Trncic, Nadira; Burke, Anna; Tariot, Pierre; Reiman, Eric M.; Chen, Kewei; Sabbagh, Marwan N.; Beiden, Christine M.; Jacobson, Sandra A.; Sirrel, Sherye A.; Doody, Rachelle S.; Villanueva-Meyer, Javier; Chowdhury, Munir; Rountree, Susan; Dang, Mimi; Kowall, Neil; Killiany, Ronald; Budson, Andrew E.; Norbash, Alexander; Johnson, Patricia Lynn; Green, Robert C.; Marshall, Gad; Johnson, Keith A.; Sperling, Reisa A.; Snyder, Peter; Salloway, Stephen; Malloy, Paul; Correia, Stephen; Bernick, Charles; Munic, Donna; Stern, Yaakov; Honig, Lawrence S.; Bell, Karen L.; Relkin, Norman; Chaing, Gloria; Ravdin, Lisa; Paul, Steven; Flashman, Laura A.; Seltzer, Marc; Hynes, Mary L.; Santulli, Robert B.; Bates, Vernice; Capote, Horacio; Rainka, Michelle; Friedl, Karl; Murali Doraiswamy, P.; Petrella, Jeffrey R.; Borges-Neto, Salvador; James, Olga; Wong, Terence; Coleman, Edward; Schwartz, Adam; Cellar, Janet S.; Levey, Allan L.; Lah, James J.; Behan, Kelly; Scott Turner, Raymond; Johnson, Kathleen; Reynolds, Brigid; Pearlson, Godfrey D.; Blank, Karen; Anderson, Karen; Obisesan, Thomas O.; Wolday, Saba; Allard, Joanne; Lerner, Alan; Ogrocki, Paula; Tatsuoka, Curtis; Fatica, Parianne; Farlow, Martin R.; Saykin, Andrew J.; Foroud, Tatiana M.; Shen, Li; Faber, Kelly; Kim, Sungeun; Nho, Kwangsik; Marie Hake, Ann; Matthews, Brandy R.; Brosch, Jared R.; Herring, Scott; Hunt, Cynthia; Albert, Marilyn; Onyike, Chiadi; D’Agostino, Daniel; Kielb, Stephanie; Graff-Radford, Neill R; Parfitt, Francine; Kendall, Tracy; Johnson, Heather; Petersen, Ronald; Jack, Clifford R.; Bernstein, Matthew; Borowski, Bret; Gunter, Jeff; Senjem, Matt; Vemuri, Prashanthi; Jones, David; Kantarci, Kejal; Ward, Chad; Mason, Sara S.; Albers, Colleen S.; Knopman, David; Johnson, Kris; Chertkow, Howard; Hosein, Chris; Mintzer, Jacob; Spicer, Kenneth; Bachman, David; Grossman, Hillel; Mitsis, Effie; Pomara, Nunzio; Hernando, Raymundo; Sarrael, Antero; Potter, William; Buckholtz, Neil; Hsiao, John; Kittur, Smita; Galvin, James E.; Cerbone, Brittany; Michel, Christina A.; Pogorelec, Dana M.; Rusinek, Henry; de Leon, Mony J; Glodzik, Lidia; De Santi, Susan; Johnson, Nancy; Chuang-Kuo; Kerwin, Diana; Bonakdarpour, Borna; Weintraub, Sandra; Grafman, Jordan; Lipowski, Kristine; Mesulam, Marek-Marsel; Scharre, Douglas W.; Kataki, Maria; Adeli, Anahita; Kaye, Jeffrey; Quinn, Joseph; Silbert, Lisa; Lind, Betty; Carter, Raina; Dolen, Sara; Borrie, Michael; Lee, T-Y; Bartha, Rob; Martinez, Walter; Villena, Teresa; Sadowsky, Carl; Khachaturian, Zaven; Ott, Brian R.; Querfurth, Henry; Tremont, Geoffrey; Frank, Richard; Fleischman, Debra; Arfanakis, Konstantinos; Shah, Raj C.; deToledo-Morrell, Leyla; Sorensen, Greg; Finger, Elizabeth; Pasternack, Stephen; Rachinsky, Irina; Drost, Dick; Rogers, John; Kertesz, Andrew; Furst, Ansgar J.; Chad, Stevan; Yesavage, Jerome; Taylor, Joy L.; Lane, Barton; Rosen, Allyson; Tinklenberg, Jared; Black, Sandra; Stefanovic, Bojana; Caldwell, Curtis; Robin Hsiung, Ging-Yuek; Mudge, Benita; Assaly, Michele; Fox, Nick; Schultz, Susan K.; Boles Ponto, Laura L.; Shim, Hyungsub; Ekstam Smith, Karen; Burns, Jeffrey M.; Swerdlow, Russell H.; Brooks, William M.; Marson, Daniel; Griffith, Randall; Clark, David; Geldmacher, David; Brockington, John; Roberson, Erik; Natelson Love, Marissa; DeCarli, Charles; Carmichael, Owen; Olichney, John; Maillard, Pauline; Fletcher, Evan; Nguyen, Dana; Preda, Andrian; Potkin, Steven; Mulnard, Ruth A.; Thai, Gaby; McAdams-Ortiz, Catherine; Landau, Susan; Jagust, William; Apostolova, Liana; Tingus, Kathleen; Woo, Ellen; Silverman, Daniel H.S.; Lu, Po H.; Bartzokis, George; Thompson, Paul; Donohue, Michael; Thomas, Ronald G.; Walter, Sarah; Gessert, Devon; Brewer, James; Vanderswag, Helen; Sather, Tamie; Jiminez, Gus; Balasubramanian, Archana B.; Mason, Jennifer; Sim, Iris; Aisen, Paul; Davis, Melissa; Morrison, Rosemary; Harvey, Danielle; Thal, Lean; Beckett, Laurel; Neylan, Thomas; Finley, Shannon; Weiner, Michael W.; Hayes, Jacqueline; Rosen, Howard J.; Miller, Bruce L.; Perry, David; Massoglia, Dino; Brawman-Mentzer, Olga; Schuff, Norbert; Smith, Charles D.; Hardy, Peter; Sinha, Partha; Oates, Elizabeth; Conrad, Gary; Koeppe, Robert A.; Lord, Joanne L.; Heidebrink, Judith L.; Arnold, Steven E.; Karlawish, Jason H.; Wolk, David; Clark, Christopher M.; Trojanowki, John Q.; Shaw, Leslie M.; Lee, Virginia; Korecka, Magdalena; Figurski, Michal; Toga, Arthur W.; Crawford, Karen; Neu, Scott; Schneider, Lon S.; Pawluczyk, Sonia; Beccera, Mauricio; Teodoro, Liberty; Spann, Bryan M.; Womack, Kyle; Mathews, Dana; Quiceno, Mary; Foster, Norm; Montine, Tom; Fruehling, J. Jay; Harding, Sandra; Johnson, Sterling; Asthana, Sanjay; Carlsson, Cynthia M.; Petrie, Eric C.; Peskind, Elaine; Li, Gail; Porsteinsson, Anton P.; Goldstein, Bonnie S.; Martin, Kim; Makino, Kelly M.; Ismail, M. Saleem; Brand, Connie; Smith, Amanda; Ashok Raj, Balebail; Fargher, Kristin; Kuller, Lew; Mathis, Chet; Ann Oakley, Mary; Lopez, Oscar L.; Simpson, Donna M.; Sink, Kaycee M.; Gordineer, Leslie; Williamson, Jeff D.; Garg, Pradeep; Watkins, Franklin; Cairns, Nigel J.; Raichle, Marc; Morris, John C.; Householder, Erin; Taylor-Reinwald, Lisa; Holtzman, David; Ances, Beau; Carroll, Maria; Creech, Mary L.; Franklin, Erin; Mintun, Mark A.; Schneider, Stacy; Oliver, Angela; Duara, Ranjan; Varon, Daniel; Greig, Maria T.; Roberts, Peggy; Varma, Pradeep; MacAvoy, Martha G.; Carson, Richard E.; van Dyck, Christopher H.; Davies, Peter; Holtzman, David; Morris, John C.; Bales, Kelly; Pickering, Eve H.; Lee, Jin-Moo; Heitsch, Laura; Kauwe, John; Goate, Alison; Piccio, Laura; Cruchaga, Carlos

    2016-01-01

    Genome-wide association studies of 146 plasma protein levels in 818 individuals revealed 56 genome-wide significant associations (28 novel) with 47 analytes. Loci associated with plasma levels of 39 proteins tested have been previously associated with various complex traits such as heart disease, inflammatory bowel disease, Type 2 diabetes, and multiple sclerosis. These data suggest that these plasma protein levels may constitute informative endophenotypes for these complex traits. We found three potential pleiotropic genes: ABO for plasma SELE and ACE levels, FUT2 for CA19-9 and CEA plasma levels, and APOE for ApoE and CRP levels. We also found multiple independent signals in loci associated with plasma levels of ApoH, CA19-9, FetuinA, IL6r, and LPa. Our study highlights the power of biological traits for genetic studies to identify genetic variants influencing clinically relevant traits, potential pleiotropic effects, and complex disease associations in the same locus.

  14. Searching for causal networks involving latent variables in complex traits: Application to growth, carcass, and meat quality traits in pigs.

    PubMed

    Peñagaricano, F; Valente, B D; Steibel, J P; Bates, R O; Ernst, C W; Khatib, H; Rosa, G J M

    2015-10-01

    Structural equation models (SEQM) can be used to model causal relationships between multiple variables in multivariate systems. Among the strengths of SEQM is its ability to consider causal links between latent variables. The use of latent variables allows modeling complex phenomena while reducing at the same time the dimensionality of the data. One relevant aspect in the quantitative genetics context is the possibility of correlated genetic effects influencing sets of variables under study. Under this scenario, if one aims at inferring causality among latent variables, genetic covariances act as confounders if ignored. Here we describe a methodology for assessing causal networks involving latent variables underlying complex phenotypic traits. The first step of the method consists of the construction of latent variables defined on the basis of prior knowledge and biological interest. These latent variables are jointly evaluated using confirmatory factor analysis. The estimated factor scores are then used as phenotypes for fitting a multivariate mixed model to obtain the covariance matrix of latent variables conditional on the genetic effects. Finally, causal relationships between the adjusted latent variables are evaluated using different SEQM with alternative causal specifications. We have applied this method to a data set with pigs for which several phenotypes were recorded over time. Five different latent variables were evaluated to explore causal links between growth, carcass, and meat quality traits. The measurement model, which included 5 latent variables capturing the information conveyed by 19 different phenotypic traits, showed an acceptable fit to data (e.g., χ/df = 1.3, root-mean-square error of approximation = 0.028, standardized root-mean-square residual = 0.041). Causal links between latent variables were explored after removing genetic confounders. Interestingly, we found that both growth (-0.160) and carcass traits (-0.500) have a significant

  15. Genetics of complex traits: prediction of phenotype, identification of causal polymorphisms and genetic architecture.

    PubMed

    Goddard, M E; Kemper, K E; MacLeod, I M; Chamberlain, A J; Hayes, B J

    2016-07-27

    Complex or quantitative traits are important in medicine, agriculture and evolution, yet, until recently, few of the polymorphisms that cause variation in these traits were known. Genome-wide association studies (GWAS), based on the ability to assay thousands of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), have revolutionized our understanding of the genetics of complex traits. We advocate the analysis of GWAS data by a statistical method that fits all SNP effects simultaneously, assuming that these effects are drawn from a prior distribution. We illustrate how this method can be used to predict future phenotypes, to map and identify the causal mutations, and to study the genetic architecture of complex traits. The genetic architecture of complex traits is even more complex than previously thought: in almost every trait studied there are thousands of polymorphisms that explain genetic variation. Methods of predicting future phenotypes, collectively known as genomic selection or genomic prediction, have been widely adopted in livestock and crop breeding, leading to increased rates of genetic improvement. PMID:27440663

  16. Genetics of complex traits: prediction of phenotype, identification of causal polymorphisms and genetic architecture

    PubMed Central

    Goddard, M. E.; Kemper, K. E.; MacLeod, I. M.; Chamberlain, A. J.; Hayes, B. J.

    2016-01-01

    Complex or quantitative traits are important in medicine, agriculture and evolution, yet, until recently, few of the polymorphisms that cause variation in these traits were known. Genome-wide association studies (GWAS), based on the ability to assay thousands of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), have revolutionized our understanding of the genetics of complex traits. We advocate the analysis of GWAS data by a statistical method that fits all SNP effects simultaneously, assuming that these effects are drawn from a prior distribution. We illustrate how this method can be used to predict future phenotypes, to map and identify the causal mutations, and to study the genetic architecture of complex traits. The genetic architecture of complex traits is even more complex than previously thought: in almost every trait studied there are thousands of polymorphisms that explain genetic variation. Methods of predicting future phenotypes, collectively known as genomic selection or genomic prediction, have been widely adopted in livestock and crop breeding, leading to increased rates of genetic improvement. PMID:27440663

  17. Cognitive and affective mechanisms linking trait mindfulness to craving among individuals in addiction recovery.

    PubMed

    Garland, Eric L; Roberts-Lewis, Amelia; Kelley, Karen; Tronnier, Christine; Hanley, Adam

    2014-04-01

    The present study aimed to identify affective, cognitive, and conative mediators of the relation between trait mindfulness and craving in data culled from an urban sample of 165 persons (in abstinence verified by urinalysis) entering into residential treatment for substance use disorders between 2010 and 2012. Multivariate path analysis adjusting for age, gender, education level, employment status, and substance use frequency indicated that the association between the total trait mindfulness score on the Five Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire and alcohol/drug craving was statistically mediated by negative affect (measured by the PANAS, beta = -.13) and cognitive reappraisal (measured by the CERQ, beta = -.08), but not by readiness to change (measured by the URICA, beta = -.001). Implications for mindfulness-oriented treatment of persons with substance use disorders are discussed. The study's limitations are noted.

  18. Trait positive affect is associated with hippocampal volume and change in caudate volume across adolescence.

    PubMed

    Dennison, Meg; Whittle, Sarah; Yücel, Murat; Byrne, Michelle L; Schwartz, Orli; Simmons, Julian G; Allen, Nicholas B

    2015-03-01

    Trait positive affect (PA) in childhood confers both risk and resilience to psychological and behavioral difficulties in adolescence, although explanations for this association are lacking. Neurodevelopment in key areas associated with positive affect is ongoing throughout adolescence, and is likely to be related to the increased incidence of disorders of positive affect during this period of development. The aim of this study was to prospectively explore the relationship between trait indices of PA and brain development in subcortical reward regions during early to mid-adolescence in a community sample of adolescents. A total of 89 (46 male, 43 female) adolescents participated in magnetic resonance imaging assessments during both early and mid-adolescence (mean age at baseline = 12.6 years, SD = 0.45; mean follow-up period = 3.78 years, SD = 0.21) and also completed self-report measures of trait positive and negative affect (at baseline). To examine the specificity of these effects, the relation between negative affect and brain development was also examined. The degree of volume reduction in the right caudate over time was predicted by PA. Independent of time, larger hippocampal volumes were associated with higher PA, and negative affect was associated with smaller left amygdala volume. The moderating effect of negative affect on the development of the left caudate varied as a function of lifetime psychiatric history. These findings suggest that early to mid-adolescence is an important period whereby neurodevelopmental processes may underlie key phenotypes conferring both risk and resilience for emotional and behavioral difficulties later in life. PMID:25231241

  19. Multiple prey traits, multiple predators: keys to understanding complex community dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DeWitt, Thomas J.; Langerhans, R. Brian

    2003-03-01

    Natural communities can be complex. Such complexity makes it difficult to discern the mechanisms generating community structure. In this paper we review concepts and issues related to linking functional and community studies while also including greater complexity into the experimental realm. These principles are primarily illustrated with case studies involving predation ecology in a freshwater snail-fish-crayfish model system. The system illustrates how predator impacts on prey are mediated by multiple prey traits, correlations between traits, functional trade-offs in predator defence, interactions between predators, and interactions with other community members. We argue for a pluralistic approach to investigating mechanisms of community structure; that is, an approach that integrates many subdisciplines of ecology and evolution. We discuss four main areas that when used together yield important insights on community structure. First, selection gradient analyses formally link functional and community ecology. This formalisation is shown to help identify targets of selection, estimate environment-specific mortality rates, and identify agents of selection in complex communities. Second, we encourage increased focus on emergent community properties (results not predicted based on pairwise species interactions). Third, we emphasise that a community, rather than a web of species interactions, may more profitably be viewed as a network of trait interactions. This trait-centred view makes clear how indirect community effects arise between species that do not interact physically. This perspective also leads to our fourth topic, the integration of phenotypes. Just as populations evolve co-adapted suites of traits, so too should individuals embody integrated trait correlations, termed 'trait integration', rather than randomly assembled collections of phenotypes. All the perspectives mentioned above suggest that investigations should focus on multiple traits and multiple

  20. Brain Activity, Personality Traits and Affect: Electrocortical Activity in Reaction to Affective Film Stimuli

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Makvand Hosseini, Sh.; Azad Fallah, P.; Rasoolzadeh Tabatabaei, S. K.; Ghannadyan Ladani, S. H.; Heise, C.

    We studied the patterns of activation over the cerebral cortex in reaction to affective film stimuli in four groups of extroverts, introverts, neurotics and emotionally stables. Measures of extraversion and neuroticism were collected and resting EEG was recorded from 40 right handed undergraduate female students (19-23) on one occasion for five 30s periods in baseline condition and in affective states. Mean log-transformed absolute alpha power was extracted from 12 electrode sites and analyzed. Patterns of activation were different in personality groups. Different patterns of asymmetries were observed in personality groups in reaction to affective stimuli. Results were partly consistent with approach and withdrawal model and provided supportive evidence for the role of right frontal asymmetry in negative affects in two groups (introverts and emotionally stables) as well as the role of right central asymmetry (increase on right and decrease on left) in active affective states (anxiety and happiness) in all personality groups. Results were also emphasized on the role of decrease activity relative to baseline in cortical regions (bilaterally in frontal and unilaterally in left parietal and temporal regions) in moderating of positive and negative emotion.

  1. Context dependence in complex adaptive landscapes: frequency and trait-dependent selection surfaces within an adaptive radiation of Caribbean pupfishes.

    PubMed

    Martin, Christopher H

    2016-06-01

    The adaptive landscape provides the foundational bridge between micro- and macroevolution. One well-known caveat to this perspective is that fitness surfaces depend on ecological context, including competitor frequency, traits measured, and resource abundance. However, this view is based largely on intraspecific studies. It is still unknown how context-dependence affects the larger features of peaks and valleys on the landscape which ultimately drive speciation and adaptive radiation. Here, I explore this question using one of the most complex fitness landscapes measured in the wild in a sympatric pupfish radiation endemic to San Salvador Island, Bahamas by tracking survival and growth of laboratory-reared F2 hybrids. I present new analyses of the effects of competitor frequency, dietary isotopes, and trait subsets on this fitness landscape. Contrary to expectations, decreasing competitor frequency increased survival only among very common phenotypes, whereas less common phenotypes rarely survived despite few competitors, suggesting that performance, not competitor frequency, shapes large-scale features of the fitness landscape. Dietary isotopes were weakly correlated with phenotype and growth, but did not explain additional survival variation. Nonlinear fitness surfaces varied substantially among trait subsets, revealing one-, two-, and three-peak landscapes, demonstrating the complexity of selection in the wild, even among similar functional traits. PMID:27130447

  2. Parameters in Dynamic Models of Complex Traits are Containers of Missing Heritability

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Yunpeng; Gjuvsland, Arne B.; Vik, Jon Olav; Smith, Nicolas P.; Hunter, Peter J.; Omholt, Stig W.

    2012-01-01

    Polymorphisms identified in genome-wide association studies of human traits rarely explain more than a small proportion of the heritable variation, and improving this situation within the current paradigm appears daunting. Given a well-validated dynamic model of a complex physiological trait, a substantial part of the underlying genetic variation must manifest as variation in model parameters. These parameters are themselves phenotypic traits. By linking whole-cell phenotypic variation to genetic variation in a computational model of a single heart cell, incorporating genotype-to-parameter maps, we show that genome-wide association studies on parameters reveal much more genetic variation than when using higher-level cellular phenotypes. The results suggest that letting such studies be guided by computational physiology may facilitate a causal understanding of the genotype-to-phenotype map of complex traits, with strong implications for the development of phenomics technology. PMID:22496634

  3. Comparative mapping reveals quantitative trait loci that affect spawning time in coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch)

    PubMed Central

    Araneda, Cristian; Díaz, Nelson F.; Gomez, Gilda; López, María Eugenia; Iturra, Patricia

    2012-01-01

    Spawning time in salmonids is a sex-limited quantitative trait that can be modified by selection. In rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss), various quantitative trait loci (QTL) that affect the expression of this trait have been discovered. In this study, we describe four microsatellite loci associated with two possible spawning time QTL regions in coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch). The four loci were identified in females from two populations (early and late spawners) produced by divergent selection from the same base population. Three of the loci (OmyFGT34TUF, One2ASC and One19ASC) that were strongly associated with spawning time in coho salmon (p < 0.0002) were previously associated with QTL for the same trait in rainbow trout; a fourth loci (Oki10) with a suggestive association (p = 0.00035) mapped 10 cM from locus OmyFGT34TUF in rainbow trout. The changes in allelic frequency observed after three generations of selection were greater than expected because of genetic drift. This work shows that comparing information from closely-related species is a valid strategy for identifying QTLs for marker-assisted selection in species whose genomes are poorly characterized or lack a saturated genetic map. PMID:22888302

  4. Platelet (/sup 3/H)imipramine binding in affective disorders: trait versus state characteristics

    SciTech Connect

    Baron, M.; Barkai, A.; Gruen, R.; Peselow, E.; Fieve, R.R.; Quitkin, F.

    1986-06-01

    Platelet (3H)imipramine binding (Bmax) was determined in 67 patients with major affective illness (33 euthymic bipolar, 34 depressed unipolar) and 58 normal control subjects. Bipolar patients had significantly lower Bmax values than did control subjects. The mean Bmax in the unipolar patients was lower than in the control subjects, but the difference was not statistically significant. Dissociation constant (Kd) values did not distinguish patients in either category from control subjects. The significantly lower Bmax in euthymic bipolar patients and the apparent state independence of Bmax in some but not all unipolar patients suggest that platelet imipramine binding may be a trait marker in a subset of affective disorders.

  5. Quantitative trait loci in hop (Humulus lupulus L.) reveal complex genetic architecture underlying variation in sex, yield and cone chemistry

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Hop (Humulus lupulus L.) is cultivated for its cones, the secondary metabolites of which contribute bitterness, flavour and aroma to beer. Molecular breeding methods, such as marker assisted selection (MAS), have great potential for improving the efficiency of hop breeding. The success of MAS is reliant on the identification of reliable marker-trait associations. This study used quantitative trait loci (QTL) analysis to identify marker-trait associations for hop, focusing on traits related to expediting plant sex identification, increasing yield capacity and improving bittering, flavour and aroma chemistry. Results QTL analysis was performed on two new linkage maps incorporating transferable Diversity Arrays Technology (DArT) markers. Sixty-three QTL were identified, influencing 36 of the 50 traits examined. A putative sex-linked marker was validated in a different pedigree, confirming the potential of this marker as a screening tool in hop breeding programs. An ontogenetically stable QTL was identified for the yield trait dry cone weight; and a QTL was identified for essential oil content, which verified the genetic basis for variation in secondary metabolite accumulation in hop cones. A total of 60 QTL were identified for 33 secondary metabolite traits. Of these, 51 were pleiotropic/linked, affecting a substantial number of secondary metabolites; nine were specific to individual secondary metabolites. Conclusions Pleiotropy and linkage, found for the first time to influence multiple hop secondary metabolites, have important implications for molecular selection methods. The selection of particular secondary metabolite profiles using pleiotropic/linked QTL will be challenging because of the difficulty of selecting for specific traits without adversely changing others. QTL specific to individual secondary metabolites, however, offer unequalled value to selection programs. In addition to their potential for selection, the QTL identified in this study

  6. A FISTful of Emotion: Individual Differences in Trait Anxiety and Cognitive-Affective Flexibility During Preadolescence.

    PubMed

    Mărcuş, Oana; Stanciu, Oana; MacLeod, Colin; Liebregts, Heather; Visu-Petra, Laura

    2016-10-01

    Cognitive-affective flexibility represents the ability to switch between alternative ways of processing emotional stimuli according to situational demands and individual goals. Although reduced flexibility has been implicated as a mechanism for the development of anxiety, there is very limited data on this relationship in children and adolescents. The aim of the current study was to investigate cognitive-affective flexibility in preadolescents (N = 112, 50 girls, 11-12 and 13-14 years old) and to examine if this ability is related to individual differences in trait anxiety. Their interplay was assessed using the modified version of the Flexible Item Selection Task (FIST; Jacques and Zelazo 2001) with non-emotional stimuli (geometrical shapes) and the Emotional FIST (EM-FIST) with emotional stimuli (emotional facial expressions). Performance on the EM-FIST indicated that across the whole age range, trials requiring greater cognitive flexibility were more demanding than nonflexible ones, as revealed by both response time and accuracy performance. Moreover, flexibility demands were higher for younger children than for older ones but only in terms of response speed. Individual differences in trait anxiety moderated the impact of flexibility only on the EM-FIST. Being flexible on the EM-FIST was more demanding for high trait anxious children than for their low trait anxious peers. Lastly, overall girls responded faster than boys, but only in the EM-FIST. These findings extend the presently limited literature concerning variability in cognitive-affective flexibility during this sensitive developmental window.

  7. Does software design complexity affect maintenance effort?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Epping, Andreas; Lott, Christopher M.

    1994-01-01

    The design complexity of a software system may be characterized within a refinement level (e.g., data flow among modules), or between refinement levels (e.g., traceability between the specification and the design). We analyzed an existing set of data from NASA's Software Engineering Laboratory to test whether changing software modules with high design complexity requires more personnel effort than changing modules with low design complexity. By analyzing variables singly, we identified strong correlations between software design complexity and change effort for error corrections performed during the maintenance phase. By analyzing variables in combination, we found patterns which identify modules in which error corrections were costly to perform during the acceptance test phase.

  8. Integrating Learning Styles and Personality Traits into an Affective Model to Support Learner's Learning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leontidis, Makis; Halatsis, Constantin

    The aim of this paper is to present a model in order to integrate the learning style and the personality traits of a learner into an enhanced Affective Style which is stored in the learner’s model. This model which can deal with the cognitive abilities as well as the affective preferences of the learner is called Learner Affective Model (LAM). The LAM is used to retain learner’s knowledge and activities during his interaction with a Web-based learning environment and also to provide him with the appropriate pedagogical guidance. The proposed model makes use of an ontological approach in combination with the Bayesian Network model and contributes to the efficient management of the LAM in an Affective Module.

  9. Genetic analysis of traits affecting the success of embryo transfer in dairy cattle.

    PubMed

    König, S; Bosselmann, F; von Borstel, U U; Simianer, H

    2007-08-01

    The primary aim of this study was to estimate variance components for traits related to embryo transfer (ET) by applying generalized linear mixed models (GLMM) for different distributions of traits (normal, binomial, and Poisson) in a synergistic context. Synergistic models were originally developed for traits affected by several genotypes, denoted as maternal, paternal, and direct effects. In the case of ET, the number of flushed ova (FO) only depends on a donor's maternal genetic effect, whereas paternal fertility must be considered for other embryo survival traits, such as the number of transferable embryos (TE), the number of degenerated embryos (DE), the number of unfertilized oocytes (UO), and the percentage of transferable embryos (PTE). Data for these traits were obtained from 4,196 flushes of 2,489 Holstein cows within 4 regions of northwest Germany from January 1998 through October 2004. Estimates of maternal heritability were 0.231 for FO, 0.096 for TE, 0.021 for DE, 0.135 for UO, and 0.099 for PTE, whereas the relative genetic impact of the paternal component was near zero. Estimates of the genetic correlations between the maternal and the paternal component were slightly negative, indicating a genetic antagonism. For the analysis of pregnancy after ET, 8,239 transfers to 6,819 different Holstein-Friesian recipients were considered by applying threshold methodology. The direct heritability for pregnancy in the recipient after ET was 0.056. The relative genetic impact of maternal and paternal components on pregnancy of recipients describing a donor's and a sire's ability to produce viable embryos was below 1%. The genetic correlations of the direct effect of the recipient with the sire of embryos (paternal effect) and the donor cow (maternal effect) for pregnancy after ET were -0.32 and -0.14, respectively. With the exception of FO and PTE (-0.17), estimates of genetic correlations among traits for the maternal site were distinctly positive, especially

  10. Genetic analysis of traits affecting the success of embryo transfer in dairy cattle.

    PubMed

    König, S; Bosselmann, F; von Borstel, U U; Simianer, H

    2007-08-01

    The primary aim of this study was to estimate variance components for traits related to embryo transfer (ET) by applying generalized linear mixed models (GLMM) for different distributions of traits (normal, binomial, and Poisson) in a synergistic context. Synergistic models were originally developed for traits affected by several genotypes, denoted as maternal, paternal, and direct effects. In the case of ET, the number of flushed ova (FO) only depends on a donor's maternal genetic effect, whereas paternal fertility must be considered for other embryo survival traits, such as the number of transferable embryos (TE), the number of degenerated embryos (DE), the number of unfertilized oocytes (UO), and the percentage of transferable embryos (PTE). Data for these traits were obtained from 4,196 flushes of 2,489 Holstein cows within 4 regions of northwest Germany from January 1998 through October 2004. Estimates of maternal heritability were 0.231 for FO, 0.096 for TE, 0.021 for DE, 0.135 for UO, and 0.099 for PTE, whereas the relative genetic impact of the paternal component was near zero. Estimates of the genetic correlations between the maternal and the paternal component were slightly negative, indicating a genetic antagonism. For the analysis of pregnancy after ET, 8,239 transfers to 6,819 different Holstein-Friesian recipients were considered by applying threshold methodology. The direct heritability for pregnancy in the recipient after ET was 0.056. The relative genetic impact of maternal and paternal components on pregnancy of recipients describing a donor's and a sire's ability to produce viable embryos was below 1%. The genetic correlations of the direct effect of the recipient with the sire of embryos (paternal effect) and the donor cow (maternal effect) for pregnancy after ET were -0.32 and -0.14, respectively. With the exception of FO and PTE (-0.17), estimates of genetic correlations among traits for the maternal site were distinctly positive, especially

  11. Quantitative trait loci affecting response to crowding stress in an F2 generation of rainbow trout produced through phenotypic selection

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Selective breeding programs for salmonids typically aim to improve traits associated with growth and disease resistance. It has been established that stressors common to production environments can adversely affect these and other traits which are important to producers and consumers. Previously,...

  12. Do Core Interpersonal and Affective Traits of PCL-R Psychopathy Interact with Antisocial Behavior and Disinhibition to Predict Violence?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kennealy, Patrick J.; Skeem, Jennifer L.; Walters, Glenn D.; Camp, Jacqueline

    2010-01-01

    The utility of psychopathy measures in predicting violence is largely explained by their assessment of social deviance (e.g., antisocial behavior; disinhibition). A key question is whether social deviance "interacts" with the core interpersonal-affective traits of psychopathy to predict violence. Do core psychopathic traits multiply the (already…

  13. A genome-wide association study using international breeding-evaluation data identifies major loci affecting production traits and stature in the Brown Swiss cattle breed

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background The genome-wide association study (GWAS) is a useful approach to identify genes affecting economically important traits in dairy cattle. Here, we report the results from a GWAS based on high-density SNP genotype data and estimated breeding values for nine production, fertility, body conformation, udder health and workability traits in the Brown Swiss cattle population that is part of the international genomic evaluation program. Result GWASs were performed using 50 k SNP chip data and deregressed estimated breeding values (DEBVs) for nine traits from between 2061 and 5043 bulls that were part of the international genomic evaluation program coordinated by Interbull Center. The nine traits were milk yield (MY), fat yield (FY), protein yield (PY), lactating cow’s ability to recycle after calving (CRC), angularity (ANG), body depth (BDE), stature (STA), milk somatic cell score (SCS) and milk speed (MSP). Analyses were performed using a linear mixed model correcting for population confounding. A total of 74 SNPs were detected to be genome-wide significantly associated with one or several of the nine analyzed traits. The strongest signal was identified on chromosome 25 for milk production traits, stature and body depth. Other signals were on chromosome 11 for angularity, chromosome 24 for somatic cell score, and chromosome 6 for milking speed. Some signals overlapped with earlier reported QTL for similar traits in other cattle populations and were located close to interesting candidate genes worthy of further investigations. Conclusions Our study shows that international genetic evaluation data is a useful resource for identifying genetic factors influencing complex traits in livestock. Several genome wide significant association signals could be identified in the Brown Swiss population, including a major signal on BTA25. Our findings report several associations and plausible candidate genes that deserve further exploration in other populations and

  14. Cytonuclear interactions affect adaptive traits of the annual plant Arabidopsis thaliana in the field

    PubMed Central

    Roux, Fabrice; Mary-Huard, Tristan; Barillot, Elise; Wenes, Estelle; Botran, Lucy; Durand, Stéphanie; Villoutreix, Romain; Martin-Magniette, Marie-Laure; Camilleri, Christine; Budar, Françoise

    2016-01-01

    Although the contribution of cytonuclear interactions to plant fitness variation is relatively well documented at the interspecific level, the prevalence of cytonuclear interactions at the intraspecific level remains poorly investigated. In this study, we set up a field experiment to explore the range of effects that cytonuclear interactions have on fitness-related traits in Arabidopsis thaliana. To do so, we created a unique series of 56 cytolines resulting from cytoplasmic substitutions among eight natural accessions reflecting within-species genetic diversity. An assessment of these cytolines and their parental lines scored for 28 adaptive whole-organism phenotypes showed that a large proportion of phenotypic traits (23 of 28) were affected by cytonuclear interactions. The effects of these interactions varied from slight but frequent across cytolines to strong in some specific parental pairs. Two parental pairs accounted for half of the significant pairwise interactions. In one parental pair, Ct-1/Sha, we observed symmetrical phenotypic responses between the two nuclear backgrounds when combined with specific cytoplasms, suggesting nuclear differentiation at loci involved in cytonuclear epistasis. In contrast, asymmetrical phenotypic responses were observed in another parental pair, Cvi-0/Sha. In the Cvi-0 nuclear background, fecundity and phenology-related traits were strongly affected by the Sha cytoplasm, leading to a modified reproductive strategy without penalizing total seed production. These results indicate that natural variation in cytoplasmic and nuclear genomes interact to shape integrative traits that contribute to adaptation, thereby suggesting that cytonuclear interactions can play a major role in the evolutionary dynamics of A. thaliana. PMID:26979961

  15. Cytonuclear interactions affect adaptive traits of the annual plant Arabidopsis thaliana in the field.

    PubMed

    Roux, Fabrice; Mary-Huard, Tristan; Barillot, Elise; Wenes, Estelle; Botran, Lucy; Durand, Stéphanie; Villoutreix, Romain; Martin-Magniette, Marie-Laure; Camilleri, Christine; Budar, Françoise

    2016-03-29

    Although the contribution of cytonuclear interactions to plant fitness variation is relatively well documented at the interspecific level, the prevalence of cytonuclear interactions at the intraspecific level remains poorly investigated. In this study, we set up a field experiment to explore the range of effects that cytonuclear interactions have on fitness-related traits in Arabidopsis thaliana To do so, we created a unique series of 56 cytolines resulting from cytoplasmic substitutions among eight natural accessions reflecting within-species genetic diversity. An assessment of these cytolines and their parental lines scored for 28 adaptive whole-organism phenotypes showed that a large proportion of phenotypic traits (23 of 28) were affected by cytonuclear interactions. The effects of these interactions varied from slight but frequent across cytolines to strong in some specific parental pairs. Two parental pairs accounted for half of the significant pairwise interactions. In one parental pair, Ct-1/Sha, we observed symmetrical phenotypic responses between the two nuclear backgrounds when combined with specific cytoplasms, suggesting nuclear differentiation at loci involved in cytonuclear epistasis. In contrast, asymmetrical phenotypic responses were observed in another parental pair, Cvi-0/Sha. In the Cvi-0 nuclear background, fecundity and phenology-related traits were strongly affected by the Sha cytoplasm, leading to a modified reproductive strategy without penalizing total seed production. These results indicate that natural variation in cytoplasmic and nuclear genomes interact to shape integrative traits that contribute to adaptation, thereby suggesting that cytonuclear interactions can play a major role in the evolutionary dynamics ofA. thaliana. PMID:26979961

  16. Replication of linkage studies of complex traits: an examination of variation in location estimates.

    PubMed Central

    Roberts, S B; MacLean, C J; Neale, M C; Eaves, L J; Kendler, K S

    1999-01-01

    In linkage studies, independent replication of positive findings is crucial in order to distinguish between true positives and false positives. Recently, the following question has arisen in linkage studies of complex traits: at what distance do we reject the hypothesis that two location estimates in a genomic region represent the same gene? Here we attempt to address this question. Sampling distributions for location estimates were constructed by computer simulation. The conditions for simulation were chosen to reflect features of "typical" complex traits, including incomplete penetrance, phenocopies, and genetic heterogeneity. Our findings, which bear on what is considered a replication in linkage studies of complex traits, suggest that, even with relatively large numbers of multiplex families, chance variation in the location estimate is substantial. In addition, we report evidence that, for the conditions studied here, the standard error of a location estimate is a function of the magnitude of the expected LOD score. PMID:10441592

  17. Integrated genomics and molecular breeding approaches for dissecting the complex quantitative traits in crop plants.

    PubMed

    Kujur, Alice; Saxena, Maneesha S; Bajaj, Deepak; Laxmi; Parida, Swarup K

    2013-12-01

    The enormous population growth, climate change and global warming are now considered major threats to agriculture and world's food security. To improve the productivity and sustainability of agriculture, the development of highyielding and durable abiotic and biotic stress-tolerant cultivars and/climate resilient crops is essential. Henceforth, understanding the molecular mechanism and dissection of complex quantitative yield and stress tolerance traits is the prime objective in current agricultural biotechnology research. In recent years, tremendous progress has been made in plant genomics and molecular breeding research pertaining to conventional and next-generation whole genome, transcriptome and epigenome sequencing efforts, generation of huge genomic, transcriptomic and epigenomic resources and development of modern genomics-assisted breeding approaches in diverse crop genotypes with contrasting yield and abiotic stress tolerance traits. Unfortunately, the detailed molecular mechanism and gene regulatory networks controlling such complex quantitative traits is not yet well understood in crop plants. Therefore, we propose an integrated strategies involving available enormous and diverse traditional and modern -omics (structural, functional, comparative and epigenomics) approaches/resources and genomics-assisted breeding methods which agricultural biotechnologist can adopt/utilize to dissect and decode the molecular and gene regulatory networks involved in the complex quantitative yield and stress tolerance traits in crop plants. This would provide clues and much needed inputs for rapid selection of novel functionally relevant molecular tags regulating such complex traits to expedite traditional and modern marker-assisted genetic enhancement studies in target crop species for developing high-yielding stress-tolerant varieties.

  18. Determining place and process: functional traits of ectomycorrhizal fungi that affect both community structure and ecosystem function.

    PubMed

    Koide, Roger T; Fernandez, Christopher; Malcolm, Glenna

    2014-01-01

    There is a growing interest amongst community ecologists in functional traits. Response traits determine membership in communities. Effect traits influence ecosystem function. One goal of community ecology is to predict the effect of environmental change on ecosystem function. Environmental change can directly and indirectly affect ecosystem function. Indirect effects are mediated through shifts in community structure. It is difficult to predict how environmental change will affect ecosystem function via the indirect route when the change in effect trait distribution is not predictable from the change in response trait distribution. When response traits function as effect traits, however, it becomes possible to predict the indirect effect of environmental change on ecosystem function. Here we illustrate four examples in which key attributes of ectomycorrhizal fungi function as both response and effect traits. While plant ecologists have discussed response and effect traits in the context of community structuring and ecosystem function, this approach has not been applied to ectomycorrhizal fungi. This is unfortunate because of the large effects of ectomycorrhizal fungi on ecosystem function. We hope to stimulate further research in this area in the hope of better predicting the ecosystem- and landscape-level effects of the fungi as influenced by changing environmental conditions.

  19. Complex issues affecting student pharmacist debt.

    PubMed

    Cain, Jeff; Campbell, Tom; Congdon, Heather Brennan; Hancock, Kim; Kaun, Megan; Lockman, Paul R; Evans, R Lee

    2014-09-15

    It is time for colleges and schools of pharmacy to examine and confront the rising costs of pharmacy education and the increasing student loan debt borne by graduates. These phenomena likely result from a variety of complex factors. The academy should begin addressing these issues before pharmacy education becomes cost-prohibitive for future generations. This paper discusses some of the more salient drivers of cost and student debt load and offers suggestions that may help alleviate some of the financial pressures.

  20. Capacitating epistasis--detection and role in the genetic architecture of complex traits.

    PubMed

    Pettersson, Mats E; Carlborg, Orjan

    2015-01-01

    Here, we discuss the potential role of capacitating epistasis in the genetic architecture of complex traits. Two alternative methods for identifying such gene-gene interactions in genetic association studies-mapping of variance controlling loci and the variance plane ratio (VPR) method-are introduced. An overview of the theoretical foundation of the methods is presented together with a discussion on their implementation and available software for performing these analyses. We conclude by highlighting a few examples of capacitating epistasis described in the literature and its potential impacts on the genetics of complex traits.

  1. The odor of a plant metabolite affects life history traits in dietary restricted adult olive flies.

    PubMed

    Gerofotis, Christos D; Ioannou, Charalampos S; Nakas, Christos T; Papadopoulos, Nikos T

    2016-01-01

    Food quality shapes life history traits either directly or through response of individuals to additional environmental factors, such as chemical cues. Plant extracts used as food additives modulate key life history traits; however little is known regarding such effects for olfactory chemical cues. Exploiting an interesting experimental system that involves the olive fly (Bactrocera oleae) and the plant metabolite α-pinene we asked whether exposure of adults to this compound modulates adult longevity and female reproduction in similar manner in a stressful - dietary (protein) restricted (DR) and in a relaxed- full diet (FD) feeding environment. Accordingly, we exposed males and females to the aroma of α-pinene and measured lifespan and age-specific fecundity in the above two dietary contexts. Our results demonstrate that exposure to α-pinene increased longevity in males and fecundity in females only under dietary restricted conditions. In relaxed food conditions, females exposed to α-pinene shifted high egg-laying towards younger ages compared to non-exposed ones. This is the first report demonstrating that a plant compound affects key life history traits of adult olive flies through olfaction. These effects are sex-specific and more pronounced in dietary restricted adults. Possible underlying mechanisms and the ecological significance are discussed. PMID:27339862

  2. Plant species richness and functional traits affect community stability after a flood event.

    PubMed

    Fischer, Felícia M; Wright, Alexandra J; Eisenhauer, Nico; Ebeling, Anne; Roscher, Christiane; Wagg, Cameron; Weigelt, Alexandra; Weisser, Wolfgang W; Pillar, Valério D

    2016-05-19

    Climate change is expected to increase the frequency and magnitude of extreme weather events. It is therefore of major importance to identify the community attributes that confer stability in ecological communities during such events. In June 2013, a flood event affected a plant diversity experiment in Central Europe (Jena, Germany). We assessed the effects of plant species richness, functional diversity, flooding intensity and community means of functional traits on different measures of stability (resistance, resilience and raw biomass changes from pre-flood conditions). Surprisingly, plant species richness reduced community resistance in response to the flood. This was mostly because more diverse communities grew more immediately following the flood. Raw biomass increased over the previous year; this resulted in decreased absolute value measures of resistance. There was no clear response pattern for resilience. We found that functional traits drove these changes in raw biomass: communities with a high proportion of late-season, short-statured plants with dense, shallow roots and small leaves grew more following the flood. Late-growing species probably avoided the flood, whereas greater root length density might have allowed species to better access soil resources brought from the flood, thus growing more in the aftermath. We conclude that resource inputs following mild floods may favour the importance of traits related to resource acquisition and be less associated with flooding tolerance.

  3. Plant species richness and functional traits affect community stability after a flood event.

    PubMed

    Fischer, Felícia M; Wright, Alexandra J; Eisenhauer, Nico; Ebeling, Anne; Roscher, Christiane; Wagg, Cameron; Weigelt, Alexandra; Weisser, Wolfgang W; Pillar, Valério D

    2016-05-19

    Climate change is expected to increase the frequency and magnitude of extreme weather events. It is therefore of major importance to identify the community attributes that confer stability in ecological communities during such events. In June 2013, a flood event affected a plant diversity experiment in Central Europe (Jena, Germany). We assessed the effects of plant species richness, functional diversity, flooding intensity and community means of functional traits on different measures of stability (resistance, resilience and raw biomass changes from pre-flood conditions). Surprisingly, plant species richness reduced community resistance in response to the flood. This was mostly because more diverse communities grew more immediately following the flood. Raw biomass increased over the previous year; this resulted in decreased absolute value measures of resistance. There was no clear response pattern for resilience. We found that functional traits drove these changes in raw biomass: communities with a high proportion of late-season, short-statured plants with dense, shallow roots and small leaves grew more following the flood. Late-growing species probably avoided the flood, whereas greater root length density might have allowed species to better access soil resources brought from the flood, thus growing more in the aftermath. We conclude that resource inputs following mild floods may favour the importance of traits related to resource acquisition and be less associated with flooding tolerance. PMID:27114578

  4. The odor of a plant metabolite affects life history traits in dietary restricted adult olive flies

    PubMed Central

    Gerofotis, Christos D.; Ioannou, Charalampos S.; Nakas, Christos T.; Papadopoulos, Nikos T.

    2016-01-01

    Food quality shapes life history traits either directly or through response of individuals to additional environmental factors, such as chemical cues. Plant extracts used as food additives modulate key life history traits; however little is known regarding such effects for olfactory chemical cues. Exploiting an interesting experimental system that involves the olive fly (Bactrocera oleae) and the plant metabolite α-pinene we asked whether exposure of adults to this compound modulates adult longevity and female reproduction in similar manner in a stressful – dietary (protein) restricted (DR) and in a relaxed- full diet (FD) feeding environment. Accordingly, we exposed males and females to the aroma of α-pinene and measured lifespan and age-specific fecundity in the above two dietary contexts. Our results demonstrate that exposure to α-pinene increased longevity in males and fecundity in females only under dietary restricted conditions. In relaxed food conditions, females exposed to α-pinene shifted high egg-laying towards younger ages compared to non-exposed ones. This is the first report demonstrating that a plant compound affects key life history traits of adult olive flies through olfaction. These effects are sex-specific and more pronounced in dietary restricted adults. Possible underlying mechanisms and the ecological significance are discussed. PMID:27339862

  5. Complex Issues Affecting Student Pharmacist Debt

    PubMed Central

    Campbell, Tom; Congdon, Heather Brennan; Hancock, Kim; Kaun, Megan; Lockman, Paul R.; Evans, R. Lee

    2014-01-01

    It is time for colleges and schools of pharmacy to examine and confront the rising costs of pharmacy education and the increasing student loan debt borne by graduates. These phenomena likely result from a variety of complex factors. The academy should begin addressing these issues before pharmacy education becomes cost-prohibitive for future generations. This paper discusses some of the more salient drivers of cost and student debt load and offers suggestions that may help alleviate some of the financial pressures. PMID:25258436

  6. Functional Connectivity under Anticipation of Shock: Correlates of Trait Anxious Affect versus Induced Anxiety.

    PubMed

    Bijsterbosch, Janine; Smith, Stephen; Bishop, Sonia J

    2015-09-01

    Sustained anxiety about potential future negative events is an important feature of anxiety disorders. In this study, we used a novel anticipation of shock paradigm to investigate individual differences in functional connectivity during prolonged threat of shock. We examined the correlates of between-participant differences in trait anxious affect and induced anxiety, where the latter reflects changes in self-reported anxiety resulting from the shock manipulation. Dissociable effects of trait anxious affect and induced anxiety were observed. Participants with high scores on a latent dimension of anxious affect showed less increase in ventromedial pFC-amygdala connectivity between periods of safety and shock anticipation. Meanwhile, lower levels of induced anxiety were linked to greater augmentation of dorsolateral pFC-anterior insula connectivity during shock anticipation. These findings suggest that ventromedial pFC-amygdala and dorsolateral pFC-insula networks might both contribute to regulation of sustained fear responses, with their recruitment varying independently across participants. The former might reflect an evolutionarily old mechanism for reducing fear or anxiety, whereas the latter might reflect a complementary mechanism by which cognitive control can be implemented to diminish fear responses generated due to anticipation of aversive stimuli or events. These two circuits might provide complementary, alternate targets for exploration in future pharmacological and cognitive intervention studies. PMID:25961638

  7. Positive affective states and alcohol consumption: The moderating role of trait positive urgency.

    PubMed

    Dinc, Linda; Cooper, Andrew J

    2015-08-01

    Trait positive urgency is characterised by risky and maladaptive actions in response to extreme positive affective states. Positive urgency has previously been shown to be a risk factor for alcohol consumption and alcohol-related problems; however, there has been limited experimental research examining how positive urgency may moderate relations between affective states and alcohol consumption. In the current study, a sample of 106 participants completed a trait measure of positive urgency and were then randomly assigned to one of three mood induction conditions: a high-activation positive, a low-activation positive or a neutral mood condition. Subsequently, participants took part in a bogus beer taste test, where their alcohol consumption was subsequently measured. The results revealed that positive urgency significantly predicted increased beer consumption, but only for those participants in the high-activation positive mood induction group. The findings from this study provide support for positive urgency as a risk factor for alcohol use and suggest that it may be of particular relevance in social situations where individuals experience highly activated positive affective states. PMID:25863003

  8. Background complexity affects colour preference in bumblebees

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forrest, Jessica; Thomson, James D.

    2009-08-01

    Flowers adapted for hummingbird pollination are typically red. This correlation is usually explained by the assertion that nectar- or pollen-stealing bees are “blind” to red flowers. However, laboratory studies have shown that bees are capable of locating artificial red flowers and often show no innate preference for blue over red. We hypothesised that these findings might be artefacts of the simplified laboratory environment. Using bumblebees ( Bombus impatiens) that had been trained to visit red and blue artificial flowers, we tested whether colour preference was influenced by complexity of the background on which they were foraging. Many bees were indifferent to flower colour when tested using a uniform green background like those commonly used in laboratory studies, but all bees showed strong colour preferences (usually for blue) when flowers were presented against a photograph of real foliage. Overall, preference for blue flowers was significantly greater on the more realistic, complex background. These results support the notion that the red of “hummingbird syndrome” flowers can function to reduce bee visits despite the ability of bees to detect red and highlight the need to consider context when drawing inferences about pollinator preferences from laboratory data.

  9. Combined sequence-based and genetic mapping analysis of complex traits in outbred rats

    PubMed Central

    Baud, Amelie; Hermsen, Roel; Guryev, Victor; Stridh, Pernilla; Graham, Delyth; McBride, Martin W.; Foroud, Tatiana; Calderari, Sophie; Diez, Margarita; Ockinger, Johan; Beyeen, Amennai D.; Gillett, Alan; Abdelmagid, Nada; Guerreiro-Cacais, Andre Ortlieb; Jagodic, Maja; Tuncel, Jonatan; Norin, Ulrika; Beattie, Elisabeth; Huynh, Ngan; Miller, William H.; Koller, Daniel L.; Alam, Imranul; Falak, Samreen; Osborne-Pellegrin, Mary; Martinez-Membrives, Esther; Canete, Toni; Blazquez, Gloria; Vicens-Costa, Elia; Mont-Cardona, Carme; Diaz-Moran, Sira; Tobena, Adolf; Hummel, Oliver; Zelenika, Diana; Saar, Kathrin; Patone, Giannino; Bauerfeind, Anja; Bihoreau, Marie-Therese; Heinig, Matthias; Lee, Young-Ae; Rintisch, Carola; Schulz, Herbert; Wheeler, David A.; Worley, Kim C.; Muzny, Donna M.; Gibbs, Richard A.; Lathrop, Mark; Lansu, Nico; Toonen, Pim; Ruzius, Frans Paul; de Bruijn, Ewart; Hauser, Heidi; Adams, David J.; Keane, Thomas; Atanur, Santosh S.; Aitman, Tim J.; Flicek, Paul; Malinauskas, Tomas; Jones, E. Yvonne; Ekman, Diana; Lopez-Aumatell, Regina; Dominiczak, Anna F; Johannesson, Martina; Holmdahl, Rikard; Olsson, Tomas; Gauguier, Dominique; Hubner, Norbert; Fernandez-Teruel, Alberto; Cuppen, Edwin; Mott, Richard; Flint, Jonathan

    2013-01-01

    Genetic mapping on fully sequenced individuals is transforming our understanding of the relationship between molecular variation and variation in complex traits. Here we report a combined sequence and genetic mapping analysis in outbred rats that maps 355 quantitative trait loci for 122 phenotypes. We identify 35 causal genes involved in 31 phenotypes, implicating novel genes in models of anxiety, heart disease and multiple sclerosis. The relation between sequence and genetic variation is unexpectedly complex: at approximately 40% of quantitative trait loci a single sequence variant cannot account for the phenotypic effect. Using comparable sequence and mapping data from mice, we show the extent and spatial pattern of variation in inbred rats differ significantly from those of inbred mice, and that the genetic variants in orthologous genes rarely contribute to the same phenotype in both species. PMID:23708188

  10. Combined sequence-based and genetic mapping analysis of complex traits in outbred rats.

    PubMed

    Baud, Amelie; Hermsen, Roel; Guryev, Victor; Stridh, Pernilla; Graham, Delyth; McBride, Martin W; Foroud, Tatiana; Calderari, Sophie; Diez, Margarita; Ockinger, Johan; Beyeen, Amennai D; Gillett, Alan; Abdelmagid, Nada; Guerreiro-Cacais, Andre Ortlieb; Jagodic, Maja; Tuncel, Jonatan; Norin, Ulrika; Beattie, Elisabeth; Huynh, Ngan; Miller, William H; Koller, Daniel L; Alam, Imranul; Falak, Samreen; Osborne-Pellegrin, Mary; Martinez-Membrives, Esther; Canete, Toni; Blazquez, Gloria; Vicens-Costa, Elia; Mont-Cardona, Carme; Diaz-Moran, Sira; Tobena, Adolf; Hummel, Oliver; Zelenika, Diana; Saar, Kathrin; Patone, Giannino; Bauerfeind, Anja; Bihoreau, Marie-Therese; Heinig, Matthias; Lee, Young-Ae; Rintisch, Carola; Schulz, Herbert; Wheeler, David A; Worley, Kim C; Muzny, Donna M; Gibbs, Richard A; Lathrop, Mark; Lansu, Nico; Toonen, Pim; Ruzius, Frans Paul; de Bruijn, Ewart; Hauser, Heidi; Adams, David J; Keane, Thomas; Atanur, Santosh S; Aitman, Tim J; Flicek, Paul; Malinauskas, Tomas; Jones, E Yvonne; Ekman, Diana; Lopez-Aumatell, Regina; Dominiczak, Anna F; Johannesson, Martina; Holmdahl, Rikard; Olsson, Tomas; Gauguier, Dominique; Hubner, Norbert; Fernandez-Teruel, Alberto; Cuppen, Edwin; Mott, Richard; Flint, Jonathan

    2013-07-01

    Genetic mapping on fully sequenced individuals is transforming understanding of the relationship between molecular variation and variation in complex traits. Here we report a combined sequence and genetic mapping analysis in outbred rats that maps 355 quantitative trait loci for 122 phenotypes. We identify 35 causal genes involved in 31 phenotypes, implicating new genes in models of anxiety, heart disease and multiple sclerosis. The relationship between sequence and genetic variation is unexpectedly complex: at approximately 40% of quantitative trait loci, a single sequence variant cannot account for the phenotypic effect. Using comparable sequence and mapping data from mice, we show that the extent and spatial pattern of variation in inbred rats differ substantially from those of inbred mice and that the genetic variants in orthologous genes rarely contribute to the same phenotype in both species.

  11. Genetic dissection of a model complex trait using the Drosophila Synthetic Population Resource

    PubMed Central

    King, Elizabeth G.; Merkes, Chris M.; McNeil, Casey L.; Hoofer, Steven R.; Sen, Saunak; Broman, Karl W.; Long, Anthony D.; Macdonald, Stuart J.

    2012-01-01

    Genetic dissection of complex, polygenic trait variation is a key goal of medical and evolutionary genetics. Attempts to identify genetic variants underlying complex traits have been plagued by low mapping resolution in traditional linkage studies, and an inability to identify variants that cumulatively explain the bulk of standing genetic variation in genome-wide association studies (GWAS). Thus, much of the heritability remains unexplained for most complex traits. Here we describe a novel, freely available resource for the Drosophila community consisting of two sets of recombinant inbred lines (RILs), each derived from an advanced generation cross between a different set of eight highly inbred, completely resequenced founders. The Drosophila Synthetic Population Resource (DSPR) has been designed to combine the high mapping resolution offered by multiple generations of recombination, with the high statistical power afforded by a linkage-based design. Here, we detail the properties of the mapping panel of >1600 genotyped RILs, and provide an empirical demonstration of the utility of the approach by genetically dissecting alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) enzyme activity. We confirm that a large fraction of the variation in this classic quantitative trait is due to allelic variation at the Adh locus, and additionally identify several previously unknown modest-effect trans-acting QTL (quantitative trait loci). Using a unique property of multiparental linkage mapping designs, for each QTL we highlight a relatively small set of candidate causative variants for follow-up work. The DSPR represents an important step toward the ultimate goal of a complete understanding of the genetics of complex traits in the Drosophila model system. PMID:22496517

  12. Epigenetic variation in the Egfr gene generates quantitative variation in a complex trait in ants.

    PubMed

    Alvarado, Sebastian; Rajakumar, Rajendhran; Abouheif, Ehab; Szyf, Moshe

    2015-03-11

    Complex quantitative traits, like size and behaviour, are a pervasive feature of natural populations. Quantitative trait variation is the product of both genetic and environmental factors, yet little is known about the mechanisms through which their interaction generates this variation. Epigenetic processes, such as DNA methylation, can mediate gene-by-environment interactions during development to generate discrete phenotypic variation. We therefore investigated the developmental role of DNA methylation in generating continuous size variation of workers in an ant colony, a key trait associated with division of labour. Here we show that, in the carpenter ant Camponotus floridanus, global (genome-wide) DNA methylation indirectly regulates quantitative methylation of the conserved cell-signalling gene Epidermal growth factor receptor to generate continuous size variation of workers. DNA methylation can therefore generate quantitative variation in a complex trait by quantitatively regulating the transcription of a gene. This mechanism, alongside genetic variation, may determine the phenotypic possibilities of loci for generating quantitative trait variation in natural populations.

  13. Epigenetic variation in the Egfr gene generates quantitative variation in a complex trait in ants.

    PubMed

    Alvarado, Sebastian; Rajakumar, Rajendhran; Abouheif, Ehab; Szyf, Moshe

    2015-01-01

    Complex quantitative traits, like size and behaviour, are a pervasive feature of natural populations. Quantitative trait variation is the product of both genetic and environmental factors, yet little is known about the mechanisms through which their interaction generates this variation. Epigenetic processes, such as DNA methylation, can mediate gene-by-environment interactions during development to generate discrete phenotypic variation. We therefore investigated the developmental role of DNA methylation in generating continuous size variation of workers in an ant colony, a key trait associated with division of labour. Here we show that, in the carpenter ant Camponotus floridanus, global (genome-wide) DNA methylation indirectly regulates quantitative methylation of the conserved cell-signalling gene Epidermal growth factor receptor to generate continuous size variation of workers. DNA methylation can therefore generate quantitative variation in a complex trait by quantitatively regulating the transcription of a gene. This mechanism, alongside genetic variation, may determine the phenotypic possibilities of loci for generating quantitative trait variation in natural populations. PMID:25758336

  14. Hypocotyl Directional Growth in Arabidopsis: A Complex Trait1[W][OA

    PubMed Central

    Gupta, Aditi; Singh, Manjul; Jones, Alan M.; Laxmi, Ashverya

    2012-01-01

    The growth direction of the Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) etiolated-seedling hypocotyl is a complex trait that is controlled by extrinsic signals such as gravity and touch as well as intrinsic signals such as hormones (brassinosteroid [BR], auxin, cytokinin, ethylene) and nutrient status (glucose [Glc], sucrose). We used a genetic approach to identify the signaling elements and their relationship underlying hypocotyl growth direction. BR randomizes etiolated-seedling growth by inhibiting negative gravitropism of the hypocotyls via modulating auxin homeostasis for which we designate as reset, not to be confused with the gravity set point angle. Cytokinin signaling antagonizes this BR reset of gravity sensing and/or tropism by affecting ethylene biosynthesis/signaling. Glc also antagonizes BR reset but acts independently of cytokinin and ethylene signaling pathways via inhibiting BR-regulated gene expression quantitatively and spatially, by altering protein degradation, and by antagonizing BR-induced changes in microtubule organization and cell patterning associated with hypocotyl agravitropism. This BR reset is reduced in the presence of the microtubule organization inhibitor oryzalin, suggesting a central role for cytoskeleton reorganization. A unifying and hierarchical model of Glc and hormone signaling interplay is proposed. The biological significance of BR-mediated changes in hypocotyl graviresponse lies in the fact that BR signaling sensitizes the dark-grown seedling hypocotyl to the presence of obstacles, overriding gravitropism, to enable efficient circumnavigation through soil. PMID:22689891

  15. Genome-wide association mapping reveals a rich genetic architecture of complex traits in Oryza sativa

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Keyan; Tung, Chih-Wei; Eizenga, Georgia C.; Wright, Mark H.; Ali, M. Liakat; Price, Adam H.; Norton, Gareth J.; Islam, M. Rafiqul; Reynolds, Andy; Mezey, Jason; McClung, Anna M.; Bustamante, Carlos D.; McCouch, Susan R.

    2011-01-01

    Asian rice, Oryza sativa is a cultivated, inbreeding species that feeds over half of the world's population. Understanding the genetic basis of diverse physiological, developmental, and morphological traits provides the basis for improving yield, quality and sustainability of rice. Here we show the results of a genome-wide association study based on genotyping 44,100 SNP variants across 413 diverse accessions of O. sativa collected from 82 countries that were systematically phenotyped for 34 traits. Using cross-population-based mapping strategies, we identified dozens of common variants influencing numerous complex traits. Significant heterogeneity was observed in the genetic architecture associated with subpopulation structure and response to environment. This work establishes an open-source translational research platform for genome-wide association studies in rice that directly links molecular variation in genes and metabolic pathways with the germplasm resources needed to accelerate varietal development and crop improvement. PMID:21915109

  16. Silver Nanoparticles Affect Functional Bioenergetic Traits in the Invasive Red Sea Mussel Brachidontes pharaonis

    PubMed Central

    Saggese, Ilenia; Sarà, Gianluca

    2016-01-01

    We investigated the functional trait responses to 5 nm metallic silver nanoparticle (AgNPs) exposure in the Lessepsian-entry bivalve B. pharaonis. Respiration rate (oxygen consumption), heartbeat rate, and absorption efficiency were evaluated across an 8-day exposure period in mesocosmal conditions. Basal reference values from not-exposed specimens were statistically compared with those obtained from animals treated with three sublethal nanoparticle concentrations (2 μg L−1, 20 μg L−1, and 40 μg L−1). Our data showed statistically significant effects on the average respiration rate of B. pharaonis. Moreover, complex nonlinear dynamics were observed as a function of the concentration level and time. Heartbeat rates largely increased with no acclimation in animals exposed to the two highest levels with similar temporal dynamics. Eventually, a decreasing trend for absorption efficiency might indicate energetic constraints. In general, these data support the possible impact of engineered nanomaterials in marine environments and support the relevance of functional trait assessment in present and future ecotoxicological studies. PMID:27800488

  17. Search for quantitative trait loci affecting growth and carcass traits in a cross population of beef and dairy cattle.

    PubMed

    Gutiérrez-Gil, B; Williams, J L; Homer, D; Burton, D; Haley, C S; Wiener, P

    2009-01-01

    A genome scan to detect QTL influencing growth and carcass-related traits was conducted in a Charolais x Holstein crossbred cattle population. Phenotypic measurements related to growth and carcass traits were made on the 235 second-generation crossbred males of this herd (F2 and reciprocal backcrosses), which were born in 4 consecutive annual cohorts. Traits measured in vivo were related to birth dimensions, growth rates, and ultrasound measurements of fat and muscle depth. The animals were slaughtered near a target BW of 550 kg, and a wide range of postmortem traits were measured: visual assessment of carcass conformation and carcass fatness, estimated subcutaneous fat percentage, weights of kidney knob and channel fat, and weights of carcass components after commercial and full-tissue dissections. The whole population, including grandparents, parents, and the crossbred bulls, was genotyped initially for 139 genome-wide microsatellite markers. Twenty-six additional markers were subsequently analyzed to increase marker density on some of the chromosomes where QTL had been initially identified. The linear regression analyses based on the 165 markers revealed a total of 51 significant QTL at the suggestive level, 21 of which were highly significant (F-value >or=9; based on the genome-wide thresholds obtained in the initial scan). A large proportion of the highly significant associations were found on chromosomes 5 and 6. The most highly significant QTL was localized between markers DIK1054 and DIK082 on chromosome 6 and explained about 20% of the phenotypic variance for the total bone proportion estimated after the commercial dissection. In the adjacent marker interval on this chromosome, 2 other highly significant QTL were found that explain about 30% of the phenotypic variance for birth dimension traits (BW and body length at birth). On chromosome 5, the most significant association influenced the lean:bone ratio at the forerib joint and was flanked by markers DIK

  18. Pleiotropic Genes Affecting Carcass Traits in Bos indicus (Nellore) Cattle Are Modulators of Growth.

    PubMed

    G T Pereira, Anirene; Utsunomiya, Yuri T; Milanesi, Marco; Torrecilha, Rafaela B P; Carmo, Adriana S; Neves, Haroldo H R; Carvalheiro, Roberto; Ajmone-Marsan, Paolo; Sonstegard, Tad S; Sölkner, Johann; Contreras-Castillo, Carmen J; Garcia, José F

    2016-01-01

    Two complementary methods, namely Multi-Trait Meta-Analysis and Versatile Gene-Based Test for Genome-wide Association Studies (VEGAS), were used to identify putative pleiotropic genes affecting carcass traits in Bos indicus (Nellore) cattle. The genotypic data comprised over 777,000 single-nucleotide polymorphism markers scored in 995 bulls, and the phenotypic data included deregressed breeding values (dEBV) for weight measurements at birth, weaning and yearling, as well visual scores taken at weaning and yearling for carcass finishing precocity, conformation and muscling. Both analyses pointed to the pleomorphic adenoma gene 1 (PLAG1) as a major pleiotropic gene. VEGAS analysis revealed 224 additional candidates. From these, 57 participated, together with PLAG1, in a network involved in the modulation of the function and expression of IGF1 (insulin like growth factor 1), IGF2 (insulin like growth factor 2), GH1 (growth hormone 1), IGF1R (insulin like growth factor 1 receptor) and GHR (growth hormone receptor), suggesting that those pleiotropic genes operate as satellite regulators of the growth pathway. PMID:27410030

  19. Pleiotropic Genes Affecting Carcass Traits in Bos indicus (Nellore) Cattle Are Modulators of Growth

    PubMed Central

    Milanesi, Marco; Torrecilha, Rafaela B. P.; Carmo, Adriana S.; Neves, Haroldo H. R.; Carvalheiro, Roberto; Ajmone-Marsan, Paolo; Sonstegard, Tad S.; Sölkner, Johann; Contreras-Castillo, Carmen J.; Garcia, José F.

    2016-01-01

    Two complementary methods, namely Multi-Trait Meta-Analysis and Versatile Gene-Based Test for Genome-wide Association Studies (VEGAS), were used to identify putative pleiotropic genes affecting carcass traits in Bos indicus (Nellore) cattle. The genotypic data comprised over 777,000 single-nucleotide polymorphism markers scored in 995 bulls, and the phenotypic data included deregressed breeding values (dEBV) for weight measurements at birth, weaning and yearling, as well visual scores taken at weaning and yearling for carcass finishing precocity, conformation and muscling. Both analyses pointed to the pleomorphic adenoma gene 1 (PLAG1) as a major pleiotropic gene. VEGAS analysis revealed 224 additional candidates. From these, 57 participated, together with PLAG1, in a network involved in the modulation of the function and expression of IGF1 (insulin like growth factor 1), IGF2 (insulin like growth factor 2), GH1 (growth hormone 1), IGF1R (insulin like growth factor 1 receptor) and GHR (growth hormone receptor), suggesting that those pleiotropic genes operate as satellite regulators of the growth pathway. PMID:27410030

  20. Personality Traits Affect Teaching Performance of Attending Physicians: Results of a Multi-Center Observational Study

    PubMed Central

    Scheepers, Renée A.; Lombarts, Kiki M. J. M. H.; van Aken, Marcel A. G.; Heineman, Maas Jan; Arah, Onyebuchi A.

    2014-01-01

    Background Worldwide, attending physicians train residents to become competent providers of patient care. To assess adequate training, attending physicians are increasingly evaluated on their teaching performance. Research suggests that personality traits affect teaching performance, consistent with studied effects of personality traits on job performance and academic performance in medicine. However, up till date, research in clinical teaching practice did not use quantitative methods and did not account for specialty differences. We empirically studied the relationship of attending physicians' personality traits with their teaching performance across surgical and non-surgical specialties. Method We conducted a survey across surgical and non-surgical specialties in eighteen medical centers in the Netherlands. Residents evaluated attending physicians' overall teaching performance, as well as the specific domains learning climate, professional attitude, communication, evaluation, and feedback, using the validated 21-item System for Evaluation of Teaching Qualities (SETQ). Attending physicians self-evaluated their personality traits on a 5-point scale using the validated 10-item Big Five Inventory (BFI), yielding the Five Factor model: extraversion, conscientiousness, neuroticism, agreeableness and openness. Results Overall, 622 (77%) attending physicians and 549 (68%) residents participated. Extraversion positively related to overall teaching performance (regression coefficient, B: 0.05, 95% CI: 0.01 to 0.10, P = 0.02). Openness was negatively associated with scores on feedback for surgical specialties only (B: −0.10, 95% CI: −0.15 to −0.05, P<0.001) and conscientiousness was positively related to evaluation of residents for non-surgical specialties only (B: 0.13, 95% CI: 0.03 to 0.22, p = 0.01). Conclusions Extraverted attending physicians were consistently evaluated as better supervisors. Surgical attending physicians who display high levels of

  1. The complex genetic and molecular basis of a model quantitative trait

    PubMed Central

    Linder, Robert A.; Seidl, Fabian; Ha, Kimberly; Ehrenreich, Ian M.

    2016-01-01

    Quantitative traits are often influenced by many loci with small effects. Identifying most of these loci and resolving them to specific genes or genetic variants is challenging. Yet, achieving such a detailed understanding of quantitative traits is important, as it can improve our knowledge of the genetic and molecular basis of heritable phenotypic variation. In this study, we use a genetic mapping strategy that involves recurrent backcrossing with phenotypic selection to obtain new insights into an ecologically, industrially, and medically relevant quantitative trait—tolerance of oxidative stress, as measured based on resistance to hydrogen peroxide. We examine the genetic basis of hydrogen peroxide resistance in three related yeast crosses and detect 64 distinct genomic loci that likely influence the trait. By precisely resolving or cloning a number of these loci, we demonstrate that a broad spectrum of cellular processes contribute to hydrogen peroxide resistance, including DNA repair, scavenging of reactive oxygen species, stress-induced MAPK signaling, translation, and water transport. Consistent with the complex genetic and molecular basis of hydrogen peroxide resistance, we show two examples where multiple distinct causal genetic variants underlie what appears to be a single locus. Our results improve understanding of the genetic and molecular basis of a highly complex, model quantitative trait. PMID:26510497

  2. Bovine chromosomal regions affecting rheological traits in acid-induced skim milk gels.

    PubMed

    Glantz, M; Gustavsson, F; Bertelsen, H P; Stålhammar, H; Lindmark-Månsson, H; Paulsson, M; Bendixen, C; Gregersen, V R

    2015-02-01

    The production of fermented milk products has increased worldwide during the last decade and is expected to continue to increase during the coming decade. The quality of these products may be optimized through breeding practices; however, the relations between cow genetics and technological properties of acid milk gels are not fully known. Therefore, the aim of this study was to identify chromosomal regions affecting acid-induced coagulation properties and possible candidate genes. Skim milk samples from 377 Swedish Red cows were rheologically analyzed for acid-induced coagulation properties using low-amplitude oscillation measurements. The resulting traits, including gel strength, coagulation time, and yield stress, were used to conduct a genome-wide association study. Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) were identified using the BovineHD SNPChip (Illumina Inc., San Diego, CA), resulting in almost 621,000 segregating markers. The genome was scanned for putative quantitative trait loci (QTL) regions, haplotypes based on highly associated SNP were inferred, and the additive genetic effects of haplotypes within each QTL region were analyzed using mixed models. A total of 8 genomic regions were identified, with large effects of the significant haplotype explaining between 4.8 and 9.8% of the phenotypic variance of the studied traits. One major QTL was identified to overlap between gel strength and yield stress, the QTL identified with the most significant SNP closest to the gene coding for κ-casein (CSN3). In addition, a chromosome-wide significant region affecting yield stress on BTA 11 was identified to be colocated with PAEP, coding for β-lactoglobulin. Furthermore, the coagulation properties of the genetic variants within the 2 genes were compared with the coagulation properties identified by the patterns of the haplotypes within the regions, and it was discovered that the haplotypes were more diverse and in one case slightly better at explaining the

  3. Histology, composition, and quality traits of chicken Pectoralis major muscle affected by wooden breast abnormality.

    PubMed

    Soglia, F; Mudalal, S; Babini, E; Di Nunzio, M; Mazzoni, M; Sirri, F; Cavani, C; Petracci, M

    2016-03-01

    Only a few years ago, the poultry industry began to face a recent abnormality in breast meat, known as wooden breast, which frequently overlaps with white striping. This study aimed to assess the impact of wooden breast abnormality on quality traits of meat. For this purpose, 32 normal (NRM), 32 wooden (WB), and 32 wooden and white-striped (WB/WS) Pectoralis major muscles were selected from the same flock of heavy broilers (males, Ross 708, weighing around 3.7 kg) in the deboning area of a commercial processing plant at 3 h postmortem and used to assess histology, proximate (moisture, protein, fat, ash, and collagen) and mineral composition (Mg, K, P, Na and Ca), sarcoplasmic and myofibrillar protein patterns, and technological traits of breast meat. Compared to the normal group, WB/WS fillets showed more severe histological lesions characterized by fiber degeneration, fibrosis, and lipidosis, coupled with a significantly harder texture. With regard to proximate and mineral composition, abnormal samples exhibited significantly (P < 0.001) higher moisture, fat, and collagen contents coupled with lower (P < 0.001) amounts of protein and ash. Furthermore, increased calcium (131 vs. 84 mg kg(-1); P < 0.05) and sodium (741 vs. 393 mg kg(-1); P < 0.001) levels were found in WB/WS meat samples. The SDS-PAGE analysis revealed a significantly lower amount of calcium-ATPase (SERCA, 114 kDa), responsible for the translocation of Ca ions across the membrane, in normal breasts compared to abnormal ones. As for meat quality traits, fillets affected by wooden abnormality exhibited significantly (P < 0.001) higher ultimate pH and lower water-holding/water-binding capacity. In particular, compared to normal, abnormal samples showed reduced marinade uptake coupled with increased drip loss and cooking losses as well. In conclusion, this study revealed that meat affected by wooden breast or both wooden breast and white striping abnormalities exhibit poorer nutritional value, harder

  4. Histology, composition, and quality traits of chicken Pectoralis major muscle affected by wooden breast abnormality.

    PubMed

    Soglia, F; Mudalal, S; Babini, E; Di Nunzio, M; Mazzoni, M; Sirri, F; Cavani, C; Petracci, M

    2016-03-01

    Only a few years ago, the poultry industry began to face a recent abnormality in breast meat, known as wooden breast, which frequently overlaps with white striping. This study aimed to assess the impact of wooden breast abnormality on quality traits of meat. For this purpose, 32 normal (NRM), 32 wooden (WB), and 32 wooden and white-striped (WB/WS) Pectoralis major muscles were selected from the same flock of heavy broilers (males, Ross 708, weighing around 3.7 kg) in the deboning area of a commercial processing plant at 3 h postmortem and used to assess histology, proximate (moisture, protein, fat, ash, and collagen) and mineral composition (Mg, K, P, Na and Ca), sarcoplasmic and myofibrillar protein patterns, and technological traits of breast meat. Compared to the normal group, WB/WS fillets showed more severe histological lesions characterized by fiber degeneration, fibrosis, and lipidosis, coupled with a significantly harder texture. With regard to proximate and mineral composition, abnormal samples exhibited significantly (P < 0.001) higher moisture, fat, and collagen contents coupled with lower (P < 0.001) amounts of protein and ash. Furthermore, increased calcium (131 vs. 84 mg kg(-1); P < 0.05) and sodium (741 vs. 393 mg kg(-1); P < 0.001) levels were found in WB/WS meat samples. The SDS-PAGE analysis revealed a significantly lower amount of calcium-ATPase (SERCA, 114 kDa), responsible for the translocation of Ca ions across the membrane, in normal breasts compared to abnormal ones. As for meat quality traits, fillets affected by wooden abnormality exhibited significantly (P < 0.001) higher ultimate pH and lower water-holding/water-binding capacity. In particular, compared to normal, abnormal samples showed reduced marinade uptake coupled with increased drip loss and cooking losses as well. In conclusion, this study revealed that meat affected by wooden breast or both wooden breast and white striping abnormalities exhibit poorer nutritional value, harder

  5. Child Psychopathic Traits Moderate Relationships between Parental Affect and Child Aggression

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yeh, Michelle T.; Chen, Pan; Raine, Adrian; Baker, Laura A.; Jacobson, Kristen C.

    2011-01-01

    Objective: Previous studies show that children with psychopathic traits may be less responsive to parenting. Although harsh/inconsistent parenting is associated with increased problem behaviors in children low on psychopathic traits, children high on psychopathic traits show consistently high levels of problem behavior regardless of negative…

  6. The Convergence of Systems and Reductionist Approaches in Complex Trait Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Williams, Evan G.; Auwerx, Johan

    2015-01-01

    Research into the genetic and environmental factors behind complex trait variation has traditionally been segregated into distinct scientific camps. The reductionist approach aims to decrypt phenotypic variability bit-by-bit, founded on the underlying hypothesis that genome-to-phenome relations are largely constructed from the additive effects of their molecular players. In contrast, the systems approach aims to examine large-scale interactions of many components simultaneously, on the premise that interactions in gene networks can be both linear and nonlinear. Both approaches are complementary, and they are becoming increasingly intertwined due to developments in gene editing tools, omics technologies, and population resources. Together, these strategies are beginning to drive the next era in complex trait research: paving the way to improve agriculture and towards more personalized medicine. PMID:26140590

  7. Interspecies systems biology uncovers metabolites affecting C. elegans gene expression and life history traits.

    PubMed

    Watson, Emma; MacNeil, Lesley T; Ritter, Ashlyn D; Yilmaz, L Safak; Rosebrock, Adam P; Caudy, Amy A; Walhout, Albertha J M

    2014-02-13

    Diet greatly influences gene expression and physiology. In mammals, elucidating the effects and mechanisms of individual nutrients is challenging due to the complexity of both the animal and its diet. Here, we used an interspecies systems biology approach with Caenorhabditis elegans and two of its bacterial diets, Escherichia coli and Comamonas aquatica, to identify metabolites that affect the animal's gene expression and physiology. We identify vitamin B12 as the major dilutable metabolite provided by Comamonas aq. that regulates gene expression, accelerates development, and reduces fertility but does not affect lifespan. We find that vitamin B12 has a dual role in the animal: it affects development and fertility via the methionine/S-Adenosylmethionine (SAM) cycle and breaks down the short-chain fatty acid propionic acid, preventing its toxic buildup. Our interspecies systems biology approach provides a paradigm for understanding complex interactions between diet and physiology.

  8. Interspecies Systems Biology Uncovers Metabolites Affecting C. elegans Gene Expression and Life History Traits

    PubMed Central

    Watson, Emma; MacNeil, Lesley T.; Ritter, Ashlyn D.; Yilmaz, L. Safak; Rosebrock, Adam P.; Caudy, Amy A.; Walhout, Albertha J. M.

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY Diet greatly influences gene expression and physiology. In mammals, elucidating the effects and mechanisms of individual nutrients is challenging due to the complexity of both the animal and its diet. Here we used an interspecies systems biology approach with Caenorhabditis elegans and two if its bacterial diets, Escherichia coli and Comamonas aquatica, to identify metabolites that affect the animal’s gene expression and physiology. We identify vitamin B12 as the major dilutable metabolite provided by Comamonas aq. that regulates gene expression, accelerates development and reduces fertility, but does not affect lifespan. We find that vitamin B12 has a dual role in the animal: it affects development and fertility via the methionine/S-Adenosylmethionine (SAM) cycle and breaks down the short-chain fatty acid propionic acid preventing its toxic buildup. Our interspecies systems biology approach provides a paradigm for understanding complex interactions between diet and physiology. PMID:24529378

  9. Affective startle potentiation in juvenile offenders: the role of conduct problems and psychopathic traits.

    PubMed

    Syngelaki, Eva M; Fairchild, Graeme; Moore, Simon C; Savage, Justin C; van Goozen, Stephanie H M

    2013-01-01

    Emotion processing difficulties are observed in antisocial individuals exhibiting serious antisocial behavior. This study examined emotion processing in 40 male juvenile offenders (JOs) and 52 male controls by measuring startle reflex responses to aversive sounds during the passive viewing of affective and neutral images. JOs as a group exhibited reduced startle-elicited blinks across all slide categories compared to normal controls. Moreover, within the offender group those with more conduct disorder symptoms and higher levels of psychopathic traits displayed reduced startle amplitudes compared to lower-scoring offenders. The finding that startle magnitudes were inversely related to severity of conduct problems supports a dimensional or continuous approach to understanding externalizing disorders. Reductions in amygdala activity could lead to blunted startle magnitudes. The current findings not only provide further evidence that antisocial children have a general defensive motivational system dysfunction and present with impairments in neural systems that subserve emotion processing, but also show for the first time that those with more severe conduct problems have reduced startle responses compared to those who are less severely affected. The implications of these findings for interventions with JOs are discussed.

  10. Evaluation of quantitative trait loci affecting intramuscular fat and reproductive traits in pigs using marker-assisted introgression.

    PubMed

    Sato, S; Ohnishi, C; Kikuchi, T; Kohira, K; Egawa, S; Terai, S; Nakamura, T; Arata, S; Komatsuda, A; Uemoto, Y

    2014-12-01

    We investigated the effects of previously identified quantitative trait loci (QTL) in an experimental backcross (BC) between Chinese Meishan pigs and commercial Duroc pigs. We performed marker-assisted introgression of two QTL for intramuscular fat (IMF) content (IMF population) and three QTL for reproductive traits (reproduction population) from a donor Meishan pig into a recipient Duroc pig. At the fourth BC generation of the IMF population and third BC generation of the reproduction population, carrier animals were selected for the production of animals homozygous for the QTL. Our previous studies have shown that the presence of a Meishan allele on the IMF QTL is associated with low IMF values, and the Meishan allele on the reproductive QTL is associated with large litters. In this study, the presence of a Duroc allele at the IMF QTL on SSC9 resulted in a 0.27% increase in IMF (additive effect = 0.27 ± 0.08), whereas the presence of a Meishan allele at the IMF QTL on SSC7 resulted in a 0.34% increase in IMF (additive effect = -0.34 ± 0.09). The presence of the Meishan allele at the IMF QTL on SSC7 thus had the opposite effect to our previous studies, that is, increased IMF. In the reproduction population, we observed no differences between the genotypes of the three QTL in regard to number of corpora lutea or litter size. Marker-assisted introgression at these QTL is thus unlikely to result in an associated increase in litter size. These results show that it is possible to introgress alleles from other breeds into a selection population using molecular markers; any unexpected results might be associated with the genetic background.

  11. Evaluation of quantitative trait loci affecting intramuscular fat and reproductive traits in pigs using marker-assisted introgression.

    PubMed

    Sato, S; Ohnishi, C; Kikuchi, T; Kohira, K; Egawa, S; Terai, S; Nakamura, T; Arata, S; Komatsuda, A; Uemoto, Y

    2014-12-01

    We investigated the effects of previously identified quantitative trait loci (QTL) in an experimental backcross (BC) between Chinese Meishan pigs and commercial Duroc pigs. We performed marker-assisted introgression of two QTL for intramuscular fat (IMF) content (IMF population) and three QTL for reproductive traits (reproduction population) from a donor Meishan pig into a recipient Duroc pig. At the fourth BC generation of the IMF population and third BC generation of the reproduction population, carrier animals were selected for the production of animals homozygous for the QTL. Our previous studies have shown that the presence of a Meishan allele on the IMF QTL is associated with low IMF values, and the Meishan allele on the reproductive QTL is associated with large litters. In this study, the presence of a Duroc allele at the IMF QTL on SSC9 resulted in a 0.27% increase in IMF (additive effect = 0.27 ± 0.08), whereas the presence of a Meishan allele at the IMF QTL on SSC7 resulted in a 0.34% increase in IMF (additive effect = -0.34 ± 0.09). The presence of the Meishan allele at the IMF QTL on SSC7 thus had the opposite effect to our previous studies, that is, increased IMF. In the reproduction population, we observed no differences between the genotypes of the three QTL in regard to number of corpora lutea or litter size. Marker-assisted introgression at these QTL is thus unlikely to result in an associated increase in litter size. These results show that it is possible to introgress alleles from other breeds into a selection population using molecular markers; any unexpected results might be associated with the genetic background. PMID:25099662

  12. Complex response in size-related traits of bulb mites (Rhizoglyphus robini) under elevated thermal conditions - an experimental evolution approach.

    PubMed

    Plesnar-Bielak, Agata; Jawor, Anna; Kramarz, Paulina E

    2013-12-15

    Temperature is a key environmental factor affecting almost all aspects of life history in ectotherms. Theory predicts that they grow faster, reach smaller sizes and produce smaller offspring when temperature increases. In addition, temperature changes, through their effects on metabolism, may also influence the expression of alternative reproductive phenotypes (ARPs) in ectotherms. Although many studies have investigated the phenotypic plasticity of life history traits in relation to temperature change, little is known about how those traits and phenotypic plasticity may evolve together. In our study we subjected bulb mites (non-model, soil organisms that normally experience rather stable thermal conditions) to experimental evolution in two temperature treatments: control (24°C) and elevated (28°C). After 18 generations, we measured adult body size, egg size and development time of both treatments at control as well as at elevated temperatures (test temperatures). Thus, we were able to detect genetic changes (the effects of selection temperature) and environmental effects (the effects of test temperature). We also observed the ARP expression throughout the experimental evolution. Our results revealed quite complex patterns of life history in traits response to temperature. Mites developed faster and reached smaller sizes at increased temperature, but evolutionary responses to increased temperature were not always parallel to the observed phenotypic plasticity. Additionally, despite smaller body sizes, females laid larger eggs at higher temperature. This effect was more pronounced in animals evolving at elevated temperature. Evolution at increased temperature also affected ARP expression, with the proportion of armored fighters decreasing from generation to generation. We propose that this could be the consequence of temperature sensitivity of the cost-to-benefits ratio of expressing ARPs.

  13. A reciprocal cross design to map the genetic architecture of complex traits in apomictic plants.

    PubMed

    Yin, Danni; Zhu, Xuli; Jiang, Libo; Zhang, Jian; Zeng, Yanru; Wu, Rongling

    2015-02-01

    Many higher plants of economic and biological importance undergo apomixis in which the maternal tissue of the ovule forms a seed, without experiencing meiosis and fertilization. This feature of apomixis has made it difficult to perform linkage mapping which relies on meiotic recombination. Here, we describe a computational model for mapping quantitative trait loci (QTLs) that control complex traits in apomictic plants. The model is founded on the mixture model-based likelihood in which maternal genotypes are dissolved into two possible components generated by meiotic and apomictic processes, respectively. The EM algorithm was implemented to discern meiotic and apomictic genotypes and, therefore, allow the marker-QTL linkage relationship to be estimated. By capitalizing on reciprocal crosses, the model is renovated to estimate and test imprinting effects of QTLs, providing a better gateway to characterize the genetic architecture of complex traits. The model was validated through computer simulation and further demonstrated for its usefulness by analyzing a real data for an apomictic woody plant. The model has for the first time provided a unique tool for genetic mapping in apomictic plants.

  14. Directional selection can drive the evolution of modularity in complex traits.

    PubMed

    Melo, Diogo; Marroig, Gabriel

    2015-01-13

    Modularity is a central concept in modern biology, providing a powerful framework for the study of living organisms on many organizational levels. Two central and related questions can be posed in regard to modularity: How does modularity appear in the first place, and what forces are responsible for keeping and/or changing modular patterns? We approached these questions using a quantitative genetics simulation framework, building on previous results obtained with bivariate systems and extending them to multivariate systems. We developed an individual-based model capable of simulating many traits controlled by many loci with variable pleiotropic relations between them, expressed in populations subject to mutation, recombination, drift, and selection. We used this model to study the problem of the emergence of modularity, and hereby show that drift and stabilizing selection are inefficient at creating modular variational structures. We also demonstrate that directional selection can have marked effects on the modular structure between traits, actively promoting a restructuring of genetic variation in the selected population and potentially facilitating the response to selection. Furthermore, we give examples of complex covariation created by simple regimes of combined directional and stabilizing selection and show that stabilizing selection is important in the maintenance of established covariation patterns. Our results are in full agreement with previous results for two-trait systems and further extend them to include scenarios of greater complexity. Finally, we discuss the evolutionary consequences of modular patterns being molded by directional selection.

  15. A reciprocal cross design to map the genetic architecture of complex traits in apomictic plants.

    PubMed

    Yin, Danni; Zhu, Xuli; Jiang, Libo; Zhang, Jian; Zeng, Yanru; Wu, Rongling

    2015-02-01

    Many higher plants of economic and biological importance undergo apomixis in which the maternal tissue of the ovule forms a seed, without experiencing meiosis and fertilization. This feature of apomixis has made it difficult to perform linkage mapping which relies on meiotic recombination. Here, we describe a computational model for mapping quantitative trait loci (QTLs) that control complex traits in apomictic plants. The model is founded on the mixture model-based likelihood in which maternal genotypes are dissolved into two possible components generated by meiotic and apomictic processes, respectively. The EM algorithm was implemented to discern meiotic and apomictic genotypes and, therefore, allow the marker-QTL linkage relationship to be estimated. By capitalizing on reciprocal crosses, the model is renovated to estimate and test imprinting effects of QTLs, providing a better gateway to characterize the genetic architecture of complex traits. The model was validated through computer simulation and further demonstrated for its usefulness by analyzing a real data for an apomictic woody plant. The model has for the first time provided a unique tool for genetic mapping in apomictic plants. PMID:25354995

  16. Unraveling the Complex Trait of Harvest Index with Association Mapping in Rice (Oryza sativa L.)

    PubMed Central

    Li, Xiaobai; Yan, Wengui; Agrama, Hesham; Jia, Limeng; Jackson, Aaron; Moldenhauer, Karen; Yeater, Kathleen; McClung, Anna; Wu, Dianxing

    2012-01-01

    Harvest index is a measure of success in partitioning assimilated photosynthate. An improvement of harvest index means an increase in the economic portion of the plant. Our objective was to identify genetic markers associated with harvest index traits using 203 O. sativa accessions. The phenotyping for 14 traits was conducted in both temperate (Arkansas) and subtropical (Texas) climates and the genotyping used 154 SSRs and an indel marker. Heading, plant height and weight, and panicle length had negative correlations, while seed set and grain weight/panicle had positive correlations with harvest index across both locations. Subsequent genetic diversity and population structure analyses identified five groups in this collection, which corresponded to their geographic origins. Model comparisons revealed that different dimensions of principal components analysis (PCA) affected harvest index traits for mapping accuracy, and kinship did not help. In total, 36 markers in Arkansas and 28 markers in Texas were identified to be significantly associated with harvest index traits. Seven and two markers were consistently associated with two or more harvest index correlated traits in Arkansas and Texas, respectively. Additionally, four markers were constitutively identified at both locations, while 32 and 24 markers were identified specifically in Arkansas and Texas, respectively. Allelic analysis of four constitutive markers demonstrated that allele 253 bp of RM431 had significantly greater effect on decreasing plant height, and 390 bp of RM24011 had the greatest effect on decreasing panicle length across both locations. Many of these identified markers are located either nearby or flanking the regions where the QTLs for harvest index have been reported. Thus, the results from this association mapping study complement and enrich the information from linkage-based QTL studies and will be the basis for improving harvest index directly and indirectly in rice. PMID:22291889

  17. Inter-individual differences in trait negative affect moderate cortisol's effects on memory formation: preliminary findings from two studies.

    PubMed

    Abercrombie, Heather C; Wirth, Michelle M; Hoks, Roxanne M

    2012-05-01

    Acute emotional arousal moderates the effects of cortisol on memory. However, it is currently unknown how stable inter-individual differences (i.e., traits) moderate cortisol's effects on memory. In two studies using within-subjects designs - 31 healthy males in Study 1 and 42 healthy subjects (22 female) in Study 2 - we measured trait negative affect (NA) and presented emotional and neutral pictures. In Study 1, we manipulated endogenous cortisol levels using a speech stressor following encoding. In Study 2, using a randomized placebo-controlled design, we pharmacologically manipulated cortisol levels prior to encoding (0.1mg/kg hydrocortisone vs. saline infused over 30min). Free recall for pictures was subsequently assessed. Trait NA repeatedly moderated the relationship between cortisol and memory formation. Findings suggested the speculative conclusion that the direction of effects may vary by sex. In males, cortisol was related to memory facilitation in subjects with lower Trait NA. Conversely, females with higher Trait NA showed greater cortisol-related increases in memory. Trait NA may be a stable inter-individual difference predicting neurocognitive effects of cortisol during stressors.

  18. Assessing the Affective Features of Psychopathy in Adolescence: A Further Validation of the Inventory of Callous and Unemotional Traits

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Roose, Annelore; Bijttebier, Patricia; Decoene, Stefaan; Claes, Laurence; Frick, Paul J.

    2010-01-01

    To provide an extended assessment of the affective features of psychopathy, Frick developed the Inventory of Callous and Unemotional Traits (ICU), which is a multi-informant questionnaire. Previous studies have provided initial support for the self-report version. The aim of the present study is to investigate the validity of self- as well as…

  19. The impact of global warming on floral traits that affect the selfing rate in a high-altitude plant

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Changes in the abiotic environment, as those expected under global warming, can influence plant mating systems through changes in floral traits that affect selfing. Herkogamy (spatial separation of male and female functions within a flower), dichogamy (temporal separation) and total flower number af...

  20. Predicting gene targets from integrative analyses of summary data from GWAS and eQTL studies for 28 human complex traits.

    PubMed

    Pavlides, Jennifer M Whitehead; Zhu, Zhihong; Gratten, Jacob; McRae, Allan F; Wray, Naomi R; Yang, Jian

    2016-01-01

    Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have identified hundreds of genetic variants associated with complex traits and diseases. However, elucidating the causal genes underlying GWAS hits remains challenging. We applied the summary data-based Mendelian randomization (SMR) method to 28 GWAS summary datasets to identify genes whose expression levels were associated with traits and diseases due to pleiotropy or causality (the expression level of a gene and the trait are affected by the same causal variant at a locus). We identified 71 genes, of which 17 are novel associations (no GWAS hit within 1 Mb distance of the genes). We integrated all the results in an online database ( http://www.cnsgenomics/shiny/SMRdb/ ), providing important resources to prioritize genes for further follow-up, for example in functional studies. PMID:27506385

  1. Comparison of significant single nucleotide polymorphisms selections in GWAS for complex traits.

    PubMed

    Frąszczak, M; Szyda, J

    2016-05-01

    The goal of this study was to compare significant SNP selection approaches in the context of complex traits based on SNP estimates obtained by models: a model fitting a single SNP (M1), a model fitting a single SNP and a random polygenic effect (M2), the nonparametric CAR score (M3), a SNP-BLUP model with random effects of all SNPs fitted simultaneously (M4). There were 46,267 SNPs tested in a population of 2601 Holstein Friesian bulls, four traits (milk and fat yields, somatic cell score, non-return rate for heifers) were considered. The numbers of SNPs selected as significant differed among models. M1 selected a very large number of SNPs, except for a NRH in which no SNPs were significant. M2 and M3 both selected similar and low number of SNPs for each trait. M4 selected more SNPs than M2 and M3. Considering linkage disequilibrium between SNPs, for MY M2 and M3 selected SNPs more highly correlated with each other than in the case of M4, while for FY M3 selection contained more correlated SNPs than M2 and M4. In conclusion, if the research interest is to identify SNPs not only with strong, but also with moderate effects on a complex trait a multiple-SNP model is recommended. Such models are capable of accounting for at least a part of linkage disequilibrium between SNPs through the design matrix of SNP effects. Functional annotation of SNPs significant in M4 reveals good correspondence between selected polymorphisms and functional information as well as with QTL mapping results. PMID:26294278

  2. Wind and mechanical stimuli differentially affect leaf traits in Plantago major.

    PubMed

    Anten, Niels P R; Alcalá-Herrera, Rafael; Schieving, Feike; Onoda, Yusuke

    2010-10-01

    • Analysing plant phenotypic plasticity in response to wind is complicated as this factor entails not only mechanical stress but also affects leaf gas and heat exchange. • We exposed Plantago major plants to brushing (mechanical stress, MS) and wind (MS and air flow) and determined the effects on physiological, morphological and mechanical characteristics of leaf petioles and laminas as well as on growth and biomass allocation at the whole-plant level. • Both MS and wind similarly reduced growth but their effects on morphological and mechanical plant traits were different. MS induced the formation of leaves with more slender petioles, and more elliptic and thinner laminas, while wind tended to evoke the opposite response. These morphological and mechanical changes increased lamina and petiole flexibility in MS plants, thus reducing mechanical stress by reconfiguration of plant structure. Responses to wind, on the other hand, seemed to be more associated with reducing transpiration. • These results show that responses to mechanical stress and wind can be different and even in the opposite direction. Plant responses to wind in the field can therefore be variable depending on overall environmental conditions and plant characteristics.

  3. Wind and mechanical stimuli differentially affect leaf traits in Plantago major.

    PubMed

    Anten, Niels P R; Alcalá-Herrera, Rafael; Schieving, Feike; Onoda, Yusuke

    2010-10-01

    • Analysing plant phenotypic plasticity in response to wind is complicated as this factor entails not only mechanical stress but also affects leaf gas and heat exchange. • We exposed Plantago major plants to brushing (mechanical stress, MS) and wind (MS and air flow) and determined the effects on physiological, morphological and mechanical characteristics of leaf petioles and laminas as well as on growth and biomass allocation at the whole-plant level. • Both MS and wind similarly reduced growth but their effects on morphological and mechanical plant traits were different. MS induced the formation of leaves with more slender petioles, and more elliptic and thinner laminas, while wind tended to evoke the opposite response. These morphological and mechanical changes increased lamina and petiole flexibility in MS plants, thus reducing mechanical stress by reconfiguration of plant structure. Responses to wind, on the other hand, seemed to be more associated with reducing transpiration. • These results show that responses to mechanical stress and wind can be different and even in the opposite direction. Plant responses to wind in the field can therefore be variable depending on overall environmental conditions and plant characteristics. PMID:20663062

  4. Meat quality traits in the emu (Dromaius novaehollandiae) as affected by muscle type and animal age.

    PubMed

    Berge, P; Lepetit, J; Renerre, M; Touraille, C

    1997-02-01

    Meat quality traits were determined in the major muscles of the emu (Dromaius novaehollandiae) at different slaughter ages (6, 10, 14, 17 or ≥20 months). A mean ultimate pH value of 5.5 was reached within around 3 h post mortem, but this value was 6.1 in animals that had suffered a preslaughter stress (transportation and fasting). The collagen and pigment contents varied widely among the muscles. The protein and pigment contents increased with animal age, but this effect was perceptible only between 6 and 14 months. The other chemical constituents were little affected by muscle type or animal age. The intense red colour of emu meat, due to a high pigment content, was very sensitive to oxidation, thus limiting the storage of fresh meat under aerobic conditions to short periods of time. Despite a rapid post-mortem tenderization (≤24 h), the residual myofibrillar strength obtained after extended ageing remained intermediate between those reported for chicken and beef. The tenderness of meat, cooked to 60 °C, differed between muscles and decreased with increasing age, thus reflecting the changes occuring in the concentration and in the heat stability of the intramuscular connective tissue.

  5. Systematic Functional Dissection of Common Genetic Variation Affecting Red Blood Cell Traits.

    PubMed

    Ulirsch, Jacob C; Nandakumar, Satish K; Wang, Li; Giani, Felix C; Zhang, Xiaolan; Rogov, Peter; Melnikov, Alexandre; McDonel, Patrick; Do, Ron; Mikkelsen, Tarjei S; Sankaran, Vijay G

    2016-06-01

    Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have successfully identified thousands of associations between common genetic variants and human disease phenotypes, but the majority of these variants are non-coding, often requiring genetic fine-mapping, epigenomic profiling, and individual reporter assays to delineate potential causal variants. We employ a massively parallel reporter assay (MPRA) to simultaneously screen 2,756 variants in strong linkage disequilibrium with 75 sentinel variants associated with red blood cell traits. We show that this assay identifies elements with endogenous erythroid regulatory activity. Across 23 sentinel variants, we conservatively identified 32 MPRA functional variants (MFVs). We used targeted genome editing to demonstrate endogenous enhancer activity across 3 MFVs that predominantly affect the transcription of SMIM1, RBM38, and CD164. Functional follow-up of RBM38 delineates a key role for this gene in the alternative splicing program occurring during terminal erythropoiesis. Finally, we provide evidence for how common GWAS-nominated variants can disrupt cell-type-specific transcriptional regulatory pathways. PMID:27259154

  6. Housing systems interacting with sex and genetic line affect broiler growth and carcass traits.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Xiaoling; Ren, Wenshi; Siegel, Paul B; Li, Juan; Yin, Huadong; Liu, Yiping; Wang, Yan; Zhang, Yao; Honaker, Christa F; Zhu, Qing

    2015-07-01

    mass (3.72%). Females of EMY1 had the highest percentage of breast muscle (18.40%). Generally, the housing system employed and the sex of the broilers greatly affect the carcass traits. PMID:26009754

  7. Evaluating the Results of Genomewide Linkage Scans of Complex Traits by Locus Counting

    PubMed Central

    Wiltshire, Steven; Cardon, Lon R.; McCarthy, Mark I.

    2002-01-01

    The evaluation of results from primary genomewide linkage scans of complex human traits remains an area of importance and considerable debate. Apart from the usual assessment of statistical significance by use of asymptotic and empirical calculations, an additional means of evaluation—based on counting the number of distinct regions showing evidence of linkage—is possible. We have explored the characteristics of such a locus-counting method over a range of experimental conditions typically encountered during genomewide scans for complex trait loci. Under the null hypothesis, factors that have an impact on the informativeness of the data—such as map density, availability of parental data, and completeness of genotyping—are seen to markedly influence the number of regions of excess allele sharing and the empirically derived genomewide significance of the associated LOD score thresholds. In some circumstances, the expected number of regions is less than one-quarter of that predicted under the assumption of a dense map and complete extraction of inheritance information. We have applied this method to a previously analyzed data set—the Warren 2 genome scan for type 2–diabetes susceptibility—and demonstrate that more regions showing evidence for linkage were observed in the primary genome scan than would be expected by chance, across the whole range of LOD scores, even though no single linkage result achieved empirical genomewide statistical significance. Locus counting may be useful in assessing the results from genome scans for complex traits in general, especially because relatively few scans generate evidence for linkage reaching genomewide significance by dense-map criteria. By taking account of the effects of reduced data informativeness on the expected number of regions showing evidence for linkage, a more meaningful, and less conservative, evaluation of the results from such linkage studies is possible. PMID:12355401

  8. Towards a comprehensive picture of the genetic landscape of complex traits.

    PubMed

    Wang, Zhong; Wang, Yaqun; Wang, Ningtao; Wang, Jianxin; Wang, Zuoheng; Vallejos, C Eduardo; Wu, Rongling

    2014-01-01

    The formation of phenotypic traits, such as biomass production, tumor volume and viral abundance, undergoes a complex process in which interactions between genes and developmental stimuli take place at each level of biological organization from cells to organisms. Traditional studies emphasize the impact of genes by directly linking DNA-based markers with static phenotypic values. Functional mapping, derived to detect genes that control developmental processes using growth equations, has proven powerful for addressing questions about the roles of genes in development. By treating phenotypic formation as a cohesive system using differential equations, a different approach-systems mapping-dissects the system into interconnected elements and then map genes that determine a web of interactions among these elements, facilitating our understanding of the genetic machineries for phenotypic development. Here, we argue that genetic mapping can play a more important role in studying the genotype-phenotype relationship by filling the gaps in the biochemical and regulatory process from DNA to end-point phenotype. We describe a new framework, named network mapping, to study the genetic architecture of complex traits by integrating the regulatory networks that cause a high-order phenotype. Network mapping makes use of a system of differential equations to quantify the rule by which transcriptional, proteomic and metabolomic components interact with each other to organize into a functional whole. The synthesis of functional mapping, systems mapping and network mapping provides a novel avenue to decipher a comprehensive picture of the genetic landscape of complex phenotypes that underlie economically and biomedically important traits. PMID:22930650

  9. Genetic strategies for dissecting complex traits in biomass willows (Salix spp.).

    PubMed

    Hanley, Steven J; Karp, Angela

    2014-11-01

    Willows are highly diverse catkin-bearing trees and shrubs of the genus Salix. They occur in many growth forms, from tall trees to creeping alpines, and successfully occupy a wide variety of ecological niches. Shrubby willows (sub-genus Vetrix) have many characteristics that render them suited to cultivation in much faster growth cycles than conventional forestry. They respond well to coppicing, can be propagated vegetatively as cuttings and achieve rapid growth with low fertilizer inputs. As a result, willows grown as short rotation coppice are now among the leading commercially grown biomass crops in temperate regions. However, although willows have a long history of cultivation for traditional uses, their industrial use is relatively recent and, compared with major arable crops, they are largely undomesticated. Breeding programmes initiated to improve willow as a biomass crop achieved a doubling of yields within a period of <15 years. These advances were made by selecting for stem characteristics (height and diameter) and coppicing response (shoot number and shoot vigour), as well as resistance to pests, diseases and environmental stress, with little or no knowledge of the genetic basis of these traits. Genetics and genomics, combined with extensive phenotyping, have substantially improved our understanding of the basis of biomass traits in willow for more targeted breeding via marker-assisted selection. Here, we present the strategy we have adopted in which a genetic-based approach was used to dissect complex traits into more defined components for molecular breeding and gene discovery.

  10. Simple versus complex models of trait evolution and stasis as a response to environmental change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hunt, Gene; Hopkins, Melanie J.; Lidgard, Scott

    2015-04-01

    Previous analyses of evolutionary patterns, or modes, in fossil lineages have focused overwhelmingly on three simple models: stasis, random walks, and directional evolution. Here we use likelihood methods to fit an expanded set of evolutionary models to a large compilation of ancestor-descendant series of populations from the fossil record. In addition to the standard three models, we assess more complex models with punctuations and shifts from one evolutionary mode to another. As in previous studies, we find that stasis is common in the fossil record, as is a strict version of stasis that entails no real evolutionary changes. Incidence of directional evolution is relatively low (13%), but higher than in previous studies because our analytical approach can more sensitively detect noisy trends. Complex evolutionary models are often favored, overwhelmingly so for sequences comprising many samples. This finding is consistent with evolutionary dynamics that are, in reality, more complex than any of the models we consider. Furthermore, the timing of shifts in evolutionary dynamics varies among traits measured from the same series. Finally, we use our empirical collection of evolutionary sequences and a long and highly resolved proxy for global climate to inform simulations in which traits adaptively track temperature changes over time. When realistically calibrated, we find that this simple model can reproduce important aspects of our paleontological results. We conclude that observed paleontological patterns, including the prevalence of stasis, need not be inconsistent with adaptive evolution, even in the face of unstable physical environments.

  11. Simple versus complex models of trait evolution and stasis as a response to environmental change

    PubMed Central

    Hunt, Gene; Hopkins, Melanie J.; Lidgard, Scott

    2015-01-01

    Previous analyses of evolutionary patterns, or modes, in fossil lineages have focused overwhelmingly on three simple models: stasis, random walks, and directional evolution. Here we use likelihood methods to fit an expanded set of evolutionary models to a large compilation of ancestor–descendant series of populations from the fossil record. In addition to the standard three models, we assess more complex models with punctuations and shifts from one evolutionary mode to another. As in previous studies, we find that stasis is common in the fossil record, as is a strict version of stasis that entails no real evolutionary changes. Incidence of directional evolution is relatively low (13%), but higher than in previous studies because our analytical approach can more sensitively detect noisy trends. Complex evolutionary models are often favored, overwhelmingly so for sequences comprising many samples. This finding is consistent with evolutionary dynamics that are, in reality, more complex than any of the models we consider. Furthermore, the timing of shifts in evolutionary dynamics varies among traits measured from the same series. Finally, we use our empirical collection of evolutionary sequences and a long and highly resolved proxy for global climate to inform simulations in which traits adaptively track temperature changes over time. When realistically calibrated, we find that this simple model can reproduce important aspects of our paleontological results. We conclude that observed paleontological patterns, including the prevalence of stasis, need not be inconsistent with adaptive evolution, even in the face of unstable physical environments. PMID:25901309

  12. Physical mapping of male fertility and meiotic drive quantitative trait loci in the mouse t complex using chromosome deficiencies.

    PubMed Central

    Planchart, A; You, Y; Schimenti, J C

    2000-01-01

    The t complex spans 20 cM of the proximal region of mouse chromosome 17. A variant form, the t haplotype (t), exists at significant frequencies in wild mouse populations and is characterized by the presence of inversions that suppress recombination with wild-type (+) chromosomes. Transmission ratio distortion and sterility are associated with t and affect males only. It is hypothesized that these phenomena are caused by trans-acting distorter/sterility factors that interact with a responder locus (Tcr(t)) and that the distorter and sterility factors are the same because homozygosity of the distorters causes male sterility. One factor, Tcd1, was previously shown to be amorphic using a chromosome deletion. To overcome limitations imposed by recombination suppression, we used a series of deletions within the t complex in trans to t chromosomes to characterize the Tcd1 region. We find that the distorter activity of Tcd1 is distinct from a linked sterility factor, originally called tcs1. YACs mapped with respect to deletion breakpoints localize tcs1 to a 1.1-Mb interval flanked by D17Aus9 and Tctex1. We present evidence for the existence of multiple proximal t complex regions that exhibit distorter activity. These studies demonstrate the utility of chromosome deletions for complex trait analysis. PMID:10835401

  13. Linking the genetic architecture of cytosine modifications with human complex traits

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Xu; Moen, Erika L.; Liu, Cong; Mu, Wenbo; Gamazon, Eric R.; Delaney, Shannon M.; Wing, Claudia; Godley, Lucy A.; Dolan, M. Eileen; Zhang, Wei

    2014-01-01

    Interindividual variation in cytosine modifications could contribute to heterogeneity in disease risks and other complex traits. We assessed the genetic architecture of cytosine modifications at 283 540 CpG sites in lymphoblastoid cell lines (LCLs) derived from independent samples of European and African descent. Our study suggests that cytosine modification variation was primarily controlled in local by single major modification quantitative trait locus (mQTL) and additional minor loci. Local genetic epistasis was detectable for a small proportion of CpG sites, which were enriched by more than 9-fold for CpG sites mapped to population-specific mQTL. Genetically dependent CpG sites whose modification levels negatively (repressive sites) or positively (facilitative sites) correlated with gene expression levels significantly co-localized with transcription factor binding, with the repressive sites predominantly associated with active promoters whereas the facilitative sites rarely at active promoters. Genetically independent repressive or facilitative sites preferentially modulated gene expression variation by influencing local chromatin accessibility, with the facilitative sites primarily antagonizing H3K27me3 and H3K9me3 deposition. In comparison with expression quantitative trait loci (eQTL), mQTL detected from LCLs were enriched in associations for a broader range of disease categories including chronic inflammatory, autoimmune and psychiatric disorders, suggesting that cytosine modification variation, while possesses a degree of cell linage specificity, is more stably inherited over development than gene expression variation. About 11% of unique single-nucleotide polymorphisms reported in the Genome-Wide Association Study Catalog were annotated, 78% as mQTL and 31% as eQTL in LCLs, which covered 37% of the investigated diseases/traits and provided insights to the biological mechanisms. PMID:24943591

  14. The Nature of Genetic Variation for Complex Traits Revealed by GWAS and Regional Heritability Mapping Analyses.

    PubMed

    Caballero, Armando; Tenesa, Albert; Keightley, Peter D

    2015-12-01

    We use computer simulations to investigate the amount of genetic variation for complex traits that can be revealed by single-SNP genome-wide association studies (GWAS) or regional heritability mapping (RHM) analyses based on full genome sequence data or SNP chips. We model a large population subject to mutation, recombination, selection, and drift, assuming a pleiotropic model of mutations sampled from a bivariate distribution of effects of mutations on a quantitative trait and fitness. The pleiotropic model investigated, in contrast to previous models, implies that common mutations of large effect are responsible for most of the genetic variation for quantitative traits, except when the trait is fitness itself. We show that GWAS applied to the full sequence increases the number of QTL detected by as much as 50% compared to the number found with SNP chips but only modestly increases the amount of additive genetic variance explained. Even with full sequence data, the total amount of additive variance explained is generally below 50%. Using RHM on the full sequence data, a slightly larger number of QTL are detected than by GWAS if the same probability threshold is assumed, but these QTL explain a slightly smaller amount of genetic variance. Our results also suggest that most of the missing heritability is due to the inability to detect variants of moderate effect (∼0.03-0.3 phenotypic SDs) segregating at substantial frequencies. Very rare variants, which are more difficult to detect by GWAS, are expected to contribute little genetic variation, so their eventual detection is less relevant for resolving the missing heritability problem.

  15. Analysis of complex human genetic traits: An ordered-notation method and new tests for mode of inheritance

    SciTech Connect

    Thomson, G.

    1995-08-01

    A novel ordered notation is introduced that allows description and calculation of the probability of any nuclear-pedigree configuration of disease status and marker-allele information. Algorithms are given that allow for complex models of disease predisposition, a highly polymorphic or less polymorphic marker locus, gametic disequilibrium between the marker and disease loci (marker association with disease), recombination between the marker and disease loci, and different ascertainment schemes. The theoretical foundation is presented for a series of new tests to identify modes of inheritance and genetic heterogeneity. These use marker-locus data in nuclear families from four ascertainment schemes: simplex (S), multiplex parent-child (MPC), multiplex sibs (MS),and multiplex parent-sibs (MPS). The tests are (1) extension of the antigen-genotype-frequencies-among-patients method to MPC, MS,and MPS pedigrees; (2) determination of the expected rates of transmission, or not, of marker alleles from parents to an affected child, for all pedigree types; (3) determination of expected identity by descent (IBD) values for affected sib pairs when a parent is affected (MPS pedigrees); and (4) determination of the expected marker-allele frequencies in affected-sib-pair IBD categories (MS and MPS pedigrees). A sampling strategy that includes the four pedigree types S, MPC, MS, and MPS is recommended for complex diseases once linkage and/or association of a marker with disease has been established. The full array of new and old tests that can be applied to these pedigrees provides a complementary suite of methods that can facilitate the mapping and characterization of complex human genetic traits. 50 refs., 2 figs., 2 tabs.

  16. A critical functional missense mutation (H173R) in the bovine PROP1 gene significantly affects growth traits in cattle.

    PubMed

    Pan, Chuanying; Wu, Chongyang; Jia, Wenchao; Xu, Yao; Lei, Chuzhao; Hu, Shenrong; Lan, Xianyong; Chen, Hong

    2013-12-01

    The PROP1 protein, encoded by the prophet of Pit-1 (PROP1) gene, exhibits both DNA-binding and transcriptional activation abilities. Its expression leads to the ontogenesis of growth hormone (GH), prolactin (PRL), thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH), and pituitary hormone. The missense mutation H173R in PROP1 may result in deficiencies of GH, PRL, TSH, and Pit-1, thereby affecting growth traits. The objective of this study was to characterize the H173R mutation within the PROP1 gene and examine its associations with growth traits in cattle. Accordingly, the H173R mutation was genotyped in 1207 cows belonging to five Chinese native breeds. Three genotypes were identified among the specimens, with genotype AA being the major one. Consequently, the "G" allele was the minor allele. Association testing revealed that the H173R mutation was significantly associated with body weight, average daily weight gain and physical parameters in the analyzed breeds. Interestingly, the cows with genotype AG and/or AA had superior growth traits compared with those expressing the GG genotype, in all tested breeds. These findings revealed that the "A" allele had positive effects on growth traits, which was consistent with the increasing binding ability and enhanced activation capacity associated with the bovine isoform PROP1-173H, representing the "A" allele. Therefore, the H173R mutation can be considered as a DNA marker for selecting individuals with superior growth traits, thereby contributing to research on breeding and genetics in the beef industry.

  17. Complex-disease networks of trait-associated single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) unveiled by information theory

    PubMed Central

    Li, Haiquan; Lee, Younghee; Chen, James L; Rebman, Ellen; Li, Jianrong

    2012-01-01

    Objective Thousands of complex-disease single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) have been discovered in genome-wide association studies (GWAS). However, these intragenic SNPs have not been collectively mined to unveil the genetic architecture between complex clinical traits. The authors hypothesize that biological annotations of host genes of trait-associated SNPs may reveal the biomolecular modularity across complex-disease traits and offer insights for drug repositioning. Methods Trait-to-polymorphism (SNPs) associations confirmed in GWAS were used. A novel method to quantify trait–trait similarity anchored in Gene Ontology annotations of human proteins and information theory was developed. The results were then validated with the shortest paths of physical protein interactions between biologically similar traits. Results A network was constructed consisting of 280 significant intertrait similarities among 177 disease traits, which covered 1438 well-validated disease-associated SNPs. Thirty-nine percent of intertrait connections were confirmed by curators, and the following additional studies demonstrated the validity of a proportion of the remainder. On a phenotypic trait level, higher Gene Ontology similarity between proteins correlated with smaller ‘shortest distance’ in protein interaction networks of complexly inherited diseases (Spearman p<2.2×10−16). Further, ‘cancer traits’ were similar to one another, as were ‘metabolic syndrome traits’ (Fisher's exact test p=0.001 and 3.5×10−7, respectively). Conclusion An imputed disease network by information-anchored functional similarity from GWAS trait-associated SNPs is reported. It is also demonstrated that small shortest paths of protein interactions correlate with complex-disease function. Taken together, these findings provide the framework for investigating drug targets with unbiased functional biomolecular networks rather than worn-out single-gene and subjective canonical pathway approaches

  18. Environmental layout complexity affects neural activity during navigation in humans.

    PubMed

    Slone, Edward; Burles, Ford; Iaria, Giuseppe

    2016-05-01

    Navigating large-scale surroundings is a fundamental ability. In humans, it is commonly assumed that navigational performance is affected by individual differences, such as age, sex, and cognitive strategies adopted for orientation. We recently showed that the layout of the environment itself also influences how well people are able to find their way within it, yet it remains unclear whether differences in environmental complexity are associated with changes in brain activity during navigation. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging to investigate how the brain responds to a change in environmental complexity by asking participants to perform a navigation task in two large-scale virtual environments that differed solely in interconnection density, a measure of complexity defined as the average number of directional choices at decision points. The results showed that navigation in the simpler, less interconnected environment was faster and more accurate relative to the complex environment, and such performance was associated with increased activity in a number of brain areas (i.e. precuneus, retrosplenial cortex, and hippocampus) known to be involved in mental imagery, navigation, and memory. These findings provide novel evidence that environmental complexity not only affects navigational behaviour, but also modulates activity in brain regions that are important for successful orientation and navigation.

  19. Environmental layout complexity affects neural activity during navigation in humans.

    PubMed

    Slone, Edward; Burles, Ford; Iaria, Giuseppe

    2016-05-01

    Navigating large-scale surroundings is a fundamental ability. In humans, it is commonly assumed that navigational performance is affected by individual differences, such as age, sex, and cognitive strategies adopted for orientation. We recently showed that the layout of the environment itself also influences how well people are able to find their way within it, yet it remains unclear whether differences in environmental complexity are associated with changes in brain activity during navigation. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging to investigate how the brain responds to a change in environmental complexity by asking participants to perform a navigation task in two large-scale virtual environments that differed solely in interconnection density, a measure of complexity defined as the average number of directional choices at decision points. The results showed that navigation in the simpler, less interconnected environment was faster and more accurate relative to the complex environment, and such performance was associated with increased activity in a number of brain areas (i.e. precuneus, retrosplenial cortex, and hippocampus) known to be involved in mental imagery, navigation, and memory. These findings provide novel evidence that environmental complexity not only affects navigational behaviour, but also modulates activity in brain regions that are important for successful orientation and navigation. PMID:26990572

  20. UGMDR: a unified conceptual framework for detection of multifactor interactions underlying complex traits.

    PubMed

    Lou, X-Y

    2015-03-01

    Biological outcomes are governed by multiple genetic and environmental factors that act in concert. Determining multifactor interactions is the primary topic of interest in recent genetics studies but presents enormous statistical and mathematical challenges. The computationally efficient multifactor dimensionality reduction (MDR) approach has emerged as a promising tool for meeting these challenges. On the other hand, complex traits are expressed in various forms and have different data generation mechanisms that cannot be appropriately modeled by a dichotomous model; the subjects in a study may be recruited according to its own analytical goals, research strategies and resources available, not only consisting of homogeneous unrelated individuals. Although several modifications and extensions of MDR have in part addressed the practical problems, they are still limited in statistical analyses of diverse phenotypes, multivariate phenotypes and correlated observations, correcting for potential population stratification and unifying both unrelated and family samples into a more powerful analysis. I propose a comprehensive statistical framework, referred as to unified generalized MDR (UGMDR), for systematic extension of MDR. The proposed approach is quite versatile, not only allowing for covariate adjustment, being suitable for analyzing almost any trait type, for example, binary, count, continuous, polytomous, ordinal, time-to-onset, multivariate and others, as well as combinations of those, but also being applicable to various study designs, including homogeneous and admixed unrelated-subject and family as well as mixtures of them. The proposed UGMDR offers an important addition to the arsenal of analytical tools for identifying nonlinear multifactor interactions and unraveling the genetic architecture of complex traits.

  1. A genome-screen experiment to detect quantitative trait loci affecting resistance to facial eczema disease in sheep.

    PubMed

    Phua, S H; Dodds, K G; Morris, C A; Henry, H M; Beattie, A E; Garmonsway, H G; Towers, N R; Crawford, A M

    2009-02-01

    Facial eczema (FE) is a secondary photosensitization disease arising from liver cirrhosis caused by the mycotoxin sporidesmin. The disease affects sheep, cattle, deer and goats, and costs the New Zealand sheep industry alone an estimated NZ$63M annually. A long-term sustainable solution to this century-old FE problem is to breed for disease-resistant animals by marker-assisted selection. As a step towards finding a diagnostic DNA test for FE sensitivity, we have conducted a genome-scan experiment to screen for quantitative trait loci (QTL) affecting this trait in Romney sheep. Four F(1) sires, obtained from reciprocal matings of FE resistant and susceptible selection-line animals, were used to generate four outcross families. The resulting half-sib progeny were artificially challenged with sporidesmin to phenotype their FE traits measured in terms of their serum levels of liver-specific enzymes, namely gamma-glutamyl transferase and glutamate dehydrogenase. In a primary screen using selective genotyping on extreme progeny of each family, a total of 244 DNA markers uniformly distributed over all 26 ovine autosomes (with an autosomal genome coverage of 79-91%) were tested for linkage to the FE traits. Data were analysed using Haley-Knott regression. The primary screen detected one significant and one suggestive QTL on chromosomes 3 and 8 respectively. Both the significant and suggestive QTL were followed up in a secondary screen where all progeny were genotyped and analysed; the QTL on chromosome 3 was significant in this analysis.

  2. Individuality in gut microbiota composition is a complex polygenic trait shaped by multiple environmental and host genetic factors.

    PubMed

    Benson, Andrew K; Kelly, Scott A; Legge, Ryan; Ma, Fangrui; Low, Soo Jen; Kim, Jaehyoung; Zhang, Min; Oh, Phaik Lyn; Nehrenberg, Derrick; Hua, Kunjie; Kachman, Stephen D; Moriyama, Etsuko N; Walter, Jens; Peterson, Daniel A; Pomp, Daniel

    2010-11-01

    In vertebrates, including humans, individuals harbor gut microbial communities whose species composition and relative proportions of dominant microbial groups are tremendously varied. Although external and stochastic factors clearly contribute to the individuality of the microbiota, the fundamental principles dictating how environmental factors and host genetic factors combine to shape this complex ecosystem are largely unknown and require systematic study. Here we examined factors that affect microbiota composition in a large (n = 645) mouse advanced intercross line originating from a cross between C57BL/6J and an ICR-derived outbred line (HR). Quantitative pyrosequencing of the microbiota defined a core measurable microbiota (CMM) of 64 conserved taxonomic groups that varied quantitatively across most animals in the population. Although some of this variation can be explained by litter and cohort effects, individual host genotype had a measurable contribution. Testing of the CMM abundances for cosegregation with 530 fully informative SNP markers identified 18 host quantitative trait loci (QTL) that show significant or suggestive genome-wide linkage with relative abundances of specific microbial taxa. These QTL affect microbiota composition in three ways; some loci control individual microbial species, some control groups of related taxa, and some have putative pleiotropic effects on groups of distantly related organisms. These data provide clear evidence for the importance of host genetic control in shaping individual microbiome diversity in mammals, a key step toward understanding the factors that govern the assemblages of gut microbiota associated with complex diseases. PMID:20937875

  3. Influences of State and Trait Affect on Behavior, Feedback-Related Negativity, and P3b in the Ultimatum Game.

    PubMed

    Riepl, Korbinian; Mussel, Patrick; Osinsky, Roman; Hewig, Johannes

    2016-01-01

    The present study investigates how different emotions can alter social bargaining behavior. An important paradigm to study social bargaining is the Ultimatum Game. There, a proposer gets a pot of money and has to offer part of it to a responder. If the responder accepts, both players get the money as proposed by the proposer. If he rejects, none of the players gets anything. Rational choice models would predict that responders accept all offers above 0. However, evidence shows that responders typically reject a large proportion of all unfair offers. We analyzed participants' behavior when they played the Ultimatum Game as responders and simultaneously collected electroencephalogram data in order to quantify the feedback-related negativity and P3b components. We induced state affect (momentarily emotions unrelated to the task) via short movie clips and measured trait affect (longer-lasting emotional dispositions) via questionnaires. State happiness led to increased acceptance rates of very unfair offers. Regarding neurophysiology, we found that unfair offers elicited larger feedback-related negativity amplitudes than fair offers. Additionally, an interaction of state and trait affect occurred: high trait negative affect (subsuming a variety of aversive mood states) led to increased feedback-related negativity amplitudes when participants were in an angry mood, but not if they currently experienced fear or happiness. We discuss that increased rumination might be responsible for this result, which might not occur, however, when people experience happiness or fear. Apart from that, we found that fair offers elicited larger P3b components than unfair offers, which might reflect increased pleasure in response to fair offers. Moreover, high trait negative affect was associated with decreased P3b amplitudes, potentially reflecting decreased motivation to engage in activities. We discuss implications of our results in the light of theories and research on depression and

  4. Influences of State and Trait Affect on Behavior, Feedback-Related Negativity, and P3b in the Ultimatum Game.

    PubMed

    Riepl, Korbinian; Mussel, Patrick; Osinsky, Roman; Hewig, Johannes

    2016-01-01

    The present study investigates how different emotions can alter social bargaining behavior. An important paradigm to study social bargaining is the Ultimatum Game. There, a proposer gets a pot of money and has to offer part of it to a responder. If the responder accepts, both players get the money as proposed by the proposer. If he rejects, none of the players gets anything. Rational choice models would predict that responders accept all offers above 0. However, evidence shows that responders typically reject a large proportion of all unfair offers. We analyzed participants' behavior when they played the Ultimatum Game as responders and simultaneously collected electroencephalogram data in order to quantify the feedback-related negativity and P3b components. We induced state affect (momentarily emotions unrelated to the task) via short movie clips and measured trait affect (longer-lasting emotional dispositions) via questionnaires. State happiness led to increased acceptance rates of very unfair offers. Regarding neurophysiology, we found that unfair offers elicited larger feedback-related negativity amplitudes than fair offers. Additionally, an interaction of state and trait affect occurred: high trait negative affect (subsuming a variety of aversive mood states) led to increased feedback-related negativity amplitudes when participants were in an angry mood, but not if they currently experienced fear or happiness. We discuss that increased rumination might be responsible for this result, which might not occur, however, when people experience happiness or fear. Apart from that, we found that fair offers elicited larger P3b components than unfair offers, which might reflect increased pleasure in response to fair offers. Moreover, high trait negative affect was associated with decreased P3b amplitudes, potentially reflecting decreased motivation to engage in activities. We discuss implications of our results in the light of theories and research on depression and

  5. Influences of State and Trait Affect on Behavior, Feedback-Related Negativity, and P3b in the Ultimatum Game

    PubMed Central

    Riepl, Korbinian; Mussel, Patrick; Osinsky, Roman; Hewig, Johannes

    2016-01-01

    The present study investigates how different emotions can alter social bargaining behavior. An important paradigm to study social bargaining is the Ultimatum Game. There, a proposer gets a pot of money and has to offer part of it to a responder. If the responder accepts, both players get the money as proposed by the proposer. If he rejects, none of the players gets anything. Rational choice models would predict that responders accept all offers above 0. However, evidence shows that responders typically reject a large proportion of all unfair offers. We analyzed participants’ behavior when they played the Ultimatum Game as responders and simultaneously collected electroencephalogram data in order to quantify the feedback-related negativity and P3b components. We induced state affect (momentarily emotions unrelated to the task) via short movie clips and measured trait affect (longer-lasting emotional dispositions) via questionnaires. State happiness led to increased acceptance rates of very unfair offers. Regarding neurophysiology, we found that unfair offers elicited larger feedback-related negativity amplitudes than fair offers. Additionally, an interaction of state and trait affect occurred: high trait negative affect (subsuming a variety of aversive mood states) led to increased feedback-related negativity amplitudes when participants were in an angry mood, but not if they currently experienced fear or happiness. We discuss that increased rumination might be responsible for this result, which might not occur, however, when people experience happiness or fear. Apart from that, we found that fair offers elicited larger P3b components than unfair offers, which might reflect increased pleasure in response to fair offers. Moreover, high trait negative affect was associated with decreased P3b amplitudes, potentially reflecting decreased motivation to engage in activities. We discuss implications of our results in the light of theories and research on depression and

  6. Kernel Approach for Modeling Interaction Effects in Genetic Association Studies of Complex Quantitative Traits

    PubMed Central

    Broadaway, K. Alaine; Duncan, Richard; Conneely, Karen N.; Almli, Lynn M.; Bradley, Bekh; Ressler, Kerry J.; Epstein, Michael P.

    2015-01-01

    The etiology of complex traits likely involves the effects of genetic and environmental factors, along with complicated interaction effects between them. Consequently, there has been interest in applying genetic association tests of complex traits that account for potential modification of the genetic effect in the presence of an environmental factor. One can perform such an analysis using a joint test of gene and gene-environment interaction. An optimal joint test would be one that remains powerful under a variety of models ranging from those of strong gene-environment interaction effect to those of little or no gene-environment interaction effect. To fill this demand, we have extended a kernel-machine based approach for association mapping of multiple SNPs to consider joint tests of gene and gene-environment interaction. The kernel-based approach for joint testing is promising, since it incorporates linkage disequilibrium information from multiple SNPs simultaneously in analysis and permits flexible modeling of interaction effects. Using simulated data, we show that our kernel-machine approach typically outperforms the traditional joint test under strong gene-environment interaction models and further outperforms the traditional main-effect association test under models of weak or no gene-environment interaction effects. We illustrate our test using genome-wide association data from the Grady Trauma Project, a cohort of highly traumatized, at-risk individuals, which has previously been investigated for interaction effects. PMID:25885490

  7. Kernel Approach for Modeling Interaction Effects in Genetic Association Studies of Complex Quantitative Traits.

    PubMed

    Broadaway, K Alaine; Duncan, Richard; Conneely, Karen N; Almli, Lynn M; Bradley, Bekh; Ressler, Kerry J; Epstein, Michael P

    2015-07-01

    The etiology of complex traits likely involves the effects of genetic and environmental factors, along with complicated interaction effects between them. Consequently, there has been interest in applying genetic association tests of complex traits that account for potential modification of the genetic effect in the presence of an environmental factor. One can perform such an analysis using a joint test of gene and gene-environment interaction. An optimal joint test would be one that remains powerful under a variety of models ranging from those of strong gene-environment interaction effect to those of little or no gene-environment interaction effect. To fill this demand, we have extended a kernel machine based approach for association mapping of multiple SNPs to consider joint tests of gene and gene-environment interaction. The kernel-based approach for joint testing is promising, because it incorporates linkage disequilibrium information from multiple SNPs simultaneously in analysis and permits flexible modeling of interaction effects. Using simulated data, we show that our kernel machine approach typically outperforms the traditional joint test under strong gene-environment interaction models and further outperforms the traditional main-effect association test under models of weak or no gene-environment interaction effects. We illustrate our test using genome-wide association data from the Grady Trauma Project, a cohort of highly traumatized, at-risk individuals, which has previously been investigated for interaction effects.

  8. Testing the indirect effect of trait mindfulness on adolescent cigarette smoking through negative affect and perceived stress mediators.

    PubMed

    Black, David S; Milam, Joel; Sussman, Steve; Johnson, C Anderson

    2012-01-01

    Mindfulness refers to an enhanced attention to and awareness of present moment experience. This study examined how trait mindfulness, as measured with six items from Mindfulness Attention Awareness Scale, might influence adolescent cigarette smoking frequency through its impact on depressive affect, anger affect and perceived stress mediators. Self-reported data from Chinese adolescents (N = 5287, mean age = 16.2 years, SD = 0.7; 48.8% females) were collected within 24 schools. The product of coefficients test was used to determine significant mediation paths. Results from baseline cross-sectional data indicated that trait mindfulness had a significant indirect effect on past 30-day smoking frequency through depressive affect, anger affect and perceived stress mediators. Results from 13-month longitudinal data indicated that these indirect effects remained significant for depressive affect and perceived stress but not for anger affect. Findings from this study may suggest that heightening mindfulness among adolescents may indirectly reduce cigarette smoking perhaps by improving affect regulation competencies.

  9. Lichen physiological traits and growth forms affect communities of associated invertebrates.

    PubMed

    Bokhorst, Stef; Asplund, Johan; Kardol, Paul; Wardle, David A

    2015-09-01

    While there has been much interest in the relationships between traits of primary producers and composition of associated invertebrate consumer communities, our knowledge is largely based on studies from vascular plants, while other types of functionally important producers, such as lichens, have rarely been considered. To address how physiological traits of lichens drive community composition of invertebrates, we collected thalli from 27 lichen species from southern Norway and quantified the communities of associated springtails, mites, and nematodes. For each lichen species, we measured key physiological thallus traits and determined whether invertebrate communities were correlated with these traits. We also explored whether invertebrate communities differed among lichen groups, categorized according to nitrogen-fixing ability, growth form, and substratum. Lichen traits explained up to 39% of the variation in abundances of major invertebrate groups. For many invertebrate groups, abundance was positively correlated with lichen N and P concentrations, N:P ratio, and the percentage of water content on saturation (WC), but had few relationships with concentrations of carbon-based secondary compounds. Diversity and taxonomic richness of invertebrate groups were sometimes also correlated with lichen N and N:P ratios. Nitrogen-fixing lichens showed higher abundance and diversity of some invertebrate groups than did non-N-fixing lichens. However, this emerged in part because most N-fixing lichens have a foliose growth form that benefits invertebrates, through, improving the microclimate, independently of N concentration. Furthermore, invertebrate communities associated with terricolous lichens were determined more by their close proximity to the soil invertebrate pool than by lichen traits. Overall, our results reveal that differences between lichen species have a large impact on the invertebrate communities that live among the thalli. Different invertebrate groups show

  10. Lichen physiological traits and growth forms affect communities of associated invertebrates.

    PubMed

    Bokhorst, Stef; Asplund, Johan; Kardol, Paul; Wardle, David A

    2015-09-01

    While there has been much interest in the relationships between traits of primary producers and composition of associated invertebrate consumer communities, our knowledge is largely based on studies from vascular plants, while other types of functionally important producers, such as lichens, have rarely been considered. To address how physiological traits of lichens drive community composition of invertebrates, we collected thalli from 27 lichen species from southern Norway and quantified the communities of associated springtails, mites, and nematodes. For each lichen species, we measured key physiological thallus traits and determined whether invertebrate communities were correlated with these traits. We also explored whether invertebrate communities differed among lichen groups, categorized according to nitrogen-fixing ability, growth form, and substratum. Lichen traits explained up to 39% of the variation in abundances of major invertebrate groups. For many invertebrate groups, abundance was positively correlated with lichen N and P concentrations, N:P ratio, and the percentage of water content on saturation (WC), but had few relationships with concentrations of carbon-based secondary compounds. Diversity and taxonomic richness of invertebrate groups were sometimes also correlated with lichen N and N:P ratios. Nitrogen-fixing lichens showed higher abundance and diversity of some invertebrate groups than did non-N-fixing lichens. However, this emerged in part because most N-fixing lichens have a foliose growth form that benefits invertebrates, through, improving the microclimate, independently of N concentration. Furthermore, invertebrate communities associated with terricolous lichens were determined more by their close proximity to the soil invertebrate pool than by lichen traits. Overall, our results reveal that differences between lichen species have a large impact on the invertebrate communities that live among the thalli. Different invertebrate groups show

  11. Aging affects postural tracking of complex visual motion cues.

    PubMed

    Sotirakis, H; Kyvelidou, A; Mademli, L; Stergiou, N; Hatzitaki, V

    2016-09-01

    Postural tracking of visual motion cues improves perception-action coupling in aging, yet the nature of the visual cues to be tracked is critical for the efficacy of such a paradigm. We investigated how well healthy older (72.45 ± 4.72 years) and young (22.98 ± 2.9 years) adults can follow with their gaze and posture horizontally moving visual target cues of different degree of complexity. Participants tracked continuously for 120 s the motion of a visual target (dot) that oscillated in three different patterns: a simple periodic (simulated by a sine), a more complex (simulated by the Lorenz attractor that is deterministic displaying mathematical chaos) and an ultra-complex random (simulated by surrogating the Lorenz attractor) pattern. The degree of coupling between performance (posture and gaze) and the target motion was quantified in the spectral coherence, gain, phase and cross-approximate entropy (cross-ApEn) between signals. Sway-target coherence decreased as a function of target complexity and was lower for the older compared to the young participants when tracking the chaotic target. On the other hand, gaze-target coherence was not affected by either target complexity or age. Yet, a lower cross-ApEn value when tracking the chaotic stimulus motion revealed a more synchronous gaze-target relationship for both age groups. Results suggest limitations in online visuo-motor processing of complex motion cues and a less efficient exploitation of the body sway dynamics with age. Complex visual motion cues may provide a suitable training stimulus to improve visuo-motor integration and restore sway variability in older adults.

  12. Aging affects postural tracking of complex visual motion cues.

    PubMed

    Sotirakis, H; Kyvelidou, A; Mademli, L; Stergiou, N; Hatzitaki, V

    2016-09-01

    Postural tracking of visual motion cues improves perception-action coupling in aging, yet the nature of the visual cues to be tracked is critical for the efficacy of such a paradigm. We investigated how well healthy older (72.45 ± 4.72 years) and young (22.98 ± 2.9 years) adults can follow with their gaze and posture horizontally moving visual target cues of different degree of complexity. Participants tracked continuously for 120 s the motion of a visual target (dot) that oscillated in three different patterns: a simple periodic (simulated by a sine), a more complex (simulated by the Lorenz attractor that is deterministic displaying mathematical chaos) and an ultra-complex random (simulated by surrogating the Lorenz attractor) pattern. The degree of coupling between performance (posture and gaze) and the target motion was quantified in the spectral coherence, gain, phase and cross-approximate entropy (cross-ApEn) between signals. Sway-target coherence decreased as a function of target complexity and was lower for the older compared to the young participants when tracking the chaotic target. On the other hand, gaze-target coherence was not affected by either target complexity or age. Yet, a lower cross-ApEn value when tracking the chaotic stimulus motion revealed a more synchronous gaze-target relationship for both age groups. Results suggest limitations in online visuo-motor processing of complex motion cues and a less efficient exploitation of the body sway dynamics with age. Complex visual motion cues may provide a suitable training stimulus to improve visuo-motor integration and restore sway variability in older adults. PMID:27126061

  13. Kernel-based whole-genome prediction of complex traits: a review

    PubMed Central

    Morota, Gota; Gianola, Daniel

    2014-01-01

    Prediction of genetic values has been a focus of applied quantitative genetics since the beginning of the 20th century, with renewed interest following the advent of the era of whole genome-enabled prediction. Opportunities offered by the emergence of high-dimensional genomic data fueled by post-Sanger sequencing technologies, especially molecular markers, have driven researchers to extend Ronald Fisher and Sewall Wright's models to confront new challenges. In particular, kernel methods are gaining consideration as a regression method of choice for genome-enabled prediction. Complex traits are presumably influenced by many genomic regions working in concert with others (clearly so when considering pathways), thus generating interactions. Motivated by this view, a growing number of statistical approaches based on kernels attempt to capture non-additive effects, either parametrically or non-parametrically. This review centers on whole-genome regression using kernel methods applied to a wide range of quantitative traits of agricultural importance in animals and plants. We discuss various kernel-based approaches tailored to capturing total genetic variation, with the aim of arriving at an enhanced predictive performance in the light of available genome annotation information. Connections between prediction machines born in animal breeding, statistics, and machine learning are revisited, and their empirical prediction performance is discussed. Overall, while some encouraging results have been obtained with non-parametric kernels, recovering non-additive genetic variation in a validation dataset remains a challenge in quantitative genetics. PMID:25360145

  14. Influence of gene interaction on complex trait variation with multilocus models.

    PubMed

    Mäki-Tanila, Asko; Hill, William G

    2014-09-01

    Although research effort is being expended into determining the importance of epistasis and epistatic variance for complex traits, there is considerable controversy about their importance. Here we undertake an analysis for quantitative traits utilizing a range of multilocus quantitative genetic models and gene frequency distributions, focusing on the potential magnitude of the epistatic variance. All the epistatic terms involving a particular locus appear in its average effect, with the number of two-locus interaction terms increasing in proportion to the square of the number of loci and that of third order as the cube and so on. Hence multilocus epistasis makes substantial contributions to the additive variance and does not, per se, lead to large increases in the nonadditive part of the genotypic variance. Even though this proportion can be high where epistasis is antagonistic to direct effects, it reduces with multiple loci. As the magnitude of the epistatic variance depends critically on the heterozygosity, for models where frequencies are widely dispersed, such as for selectively neutral mutations, contributions of epistatic variance are always small. Epistasis may be important in understanding the genetic architecture, for example, of function or human disease, but that does not imply that loci exhibiting it will contribute much genetic variance. Overall we conclude that theoretical predictions and experimental observations of low amounts of epistatic variance in outbred populations are concordant. It is not a likely source of missing heritability, for example, or major influence on predictions of rates of evolution.

  15. Stocker growth on rye and ryegrass pastures affects subsequent feedlot gains and carcass traits

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Stocker calves were stocked on annual rye (Secale cereale L.) and ryegrass (Lolium multiflorum Lam.) pastures using stocking strategies (STK) to create graded levels of gain to assess subsequent growth rates, feedlot performance, and carcass traits. During two consecutive years, yearling Angus, Here...

  16. Plant species loss affects life-history traits of aphids and their parasitoids.

    PubMed

    Petermann, Jana S; Müller, Christine B; Roscher, Christiane; Weigelt, Alexandra; Weisser, Wolfgang W; Schmid, Bernhard

    2010-08-06

    The consequences of plant species loss are rarely assessed in a multi-trophic context and especially effects on life-history traits of organisms at higher trophic levels have remained largely unstudied. We used a grassland biodiversity experiment and measured the effects of two components of plant diversity, plant species richness and the presence of nitrogen-fixing legumes, on several life-history traits of naturally colonizing aphids and their primary and secondary parasitoids in the field. We found that, irrespective of aphid species identity, the proportion of winged aphid morphs decreased with increasing plant species richness, which was correlated with decreasing host plant biomass. Similarly, emergence proportions of parasitoids decreased with increasing plant species richness. Both, emergence proportions and proportions of female parasitoids were lower in plots with legumes, where host plants had increased nitrogen concentrations. This effect of legume presence could indicate that aphids were better defended against parasitoids in high-nitrogen environments. Body mass of emerged individuals of the two most abundant primary parasitoid species was, however, higher in plots with legumes, suggesting that once parasitoids could overcome aphid defenses, they could profit from larger or more nutritious hosts. Our study demonstrates that cascading effects of plant species loss on higher trophic levels such as aphids, parasitoids and secondary parasitoids begin with changed life-history traits of these insects. Thus, life-history traits of organisms at higher trophic levels may be useful indicators of bottom-up effects of plant diversity on the biodiversity of consumers.

  17. Predisaster Trait Anxiety and Negative Affect Predict Posttraumatic Stress in Youths after Hurricane Katrina

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Weems, Carl F.; Pina, Armando A.; Costa, Natalie M.; Watts, Sarah E.; Taylor, Leslie K.; Cannon, Melinda F.

    2007-01-01

    On the basis of theory and previous research, it was hypothesized that predisaster child trait anxiety would predict disaster-related posttraumatic stress symptoms and generalized anxiety disorder symptoms, even after controlling for the number of hurricane exposure events. Results support this hypothesis and further indicate that predisaster…

  18. Genotype-environment interactions at quantitative trait loci affecting inflorescence development in Arabidopsis thaliana.

    PubMed Central

    Ungerer, Mark C; Halldorsdottir, Solveig S; Purugganan, Michael D; Mackay, Trudy F C

    2003-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity and genotype-environment interactions (GEI) play a prominent role in plant morphological diversity and in the potential functional capacities of plant life-history traits. The genetic basis of plasticity and GEI, however, is poorly understood in most organisms. In this report, inflorescence development patterns in Arabidopsis thaliana were examined under different, ecologically relevant photoperiod environments for two recombinant inbred mapping populations (Ler x Col and Cvi x Ler) using a combination of quantitative genetics and quantitative trait locus (QTL) mapping. Plasticity and GEI were regularly observed for the majority of 13 inflorescence traits. These observations can be attributable (at least partly) to variable effects of specific QTL. Pooled across traits, 12/44 (27.3%) and 32/62 (51.6%) of QTL exhibited significant QTL x environment interactions in the Ler x Col and Cvi x Ler lines, respectively. These interactions were attributable to changes in magnitude of effect of QTL more often than to changes in rank order (sign) of effect. Multiple QTL x environment interactions (in Cvi x Ler) clustered in two genomic regions on chromosomes 1 and 5, indicating a disproportionate contribution of these regions to the phenotypic patterns observed. High-resolution mapping will be necessary to distinguish between the alternative explanations of pleiotropy and tight linkage among multiple genes. PMID:14504242

  19. Individual species affect plant traits structure in their surroundings: evidence of functional mechanisms of assembly.

    PubMed

    Chacón-Labella, Julia; de la Cruz, Marcelino; Pescador, David S; Escudero, Adrián

    2016-04-01

    Evaluating community assembly through the use of functional traits is a promising tool for testing predictions arising from Niche and Coexistence theories. Although interactions among neighboring species and their inter-specific differences are known drivers of coexistence with a strong spatial signal, assessing the role of individual species on the functional structure of the community at different spatial scales remains a challenge. Here, we ask whether individual species exert a measurable effect on the spatial organization of different functional traits in local assemblages. We first propose and compute two functions that describe different aspects of functional trait organization around individual species at multiple scales: individual weighted mean area relationship and individual functional diversity area relationship. Secondly, we develop a conceptual model on the relationship and simultaneous variation of these two metrics, providing five alternative scenarios in response to the ability of some target species to modify its neighbor environment and the possible assembly mechanisms involved. Our results show that some species influence the spatial structure of specific functional traits, but their effects were always restricted to the finest spatial scales. In the basis of our conceptual model, the observed patterns point to two main mechanisms driving the functional structure of the community at the fine scale, "biotic" filtering meditated by individual species and resource partitioning driven by indirect facilitation rather than by competitive mechanisms.

  20. A computational model for sex-specific genetic architecture of complex traits in humans: Implications for mapping pain sensitivity

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Chenguang; Cheng, Yun; Liu, Tian; Li, Qin; Fillingim, Roger B; Wallace, Margaret R; Staud, Roland; Kaplan, Lee; Wu, Rongling

    2008-01-01

    Understanding differences in the genetic architecture of complex traits between the two sexes has significant implications for evolutionary studies and clinical diagnosis. However, our knowledge about sex-specific genetic architecture is limited largely because of a lack of analytical models that can detect and quantify the effects of sex on the complexity of quantitative genetic variation. Here, we derived a statistical model for mapping DNA sequence variants that contribute to sex-specific differences in allele frequencies, linkage disequilibria, and additive and dominance genetic effects due to haplotype diversity. This model allows a genome-wide search for functional haplotypes and the estimation and test of haplotype by sex interactions and sex-specific heritability. The model, validated by simulation studies, was used to detect sex-specific functional haplotypes that encode a pain sensitivity trait in humans. The model could have important implications for mapping complex trait genes and studying the detailed genetic architecture of sex-specific differences. PMID:18416828

  1. Double trouble. Trait food craving and impulsivity interactively predict food-cue affected behavioral inhibition.

    PubMed

    Meule, Adrian; Kübler, Andrea

    2014-08-01

    Impulsivity and food craving have both been implicated in overeating. Recent results suggest that both processes may interactively predict increased food intake. In the present study, female participants performed a Go/No-go task with pictures of high- and low-calorie foods. They were instructed to press a button in response to the respective target category, but withhold responses to the other category. Target category was switched after every other block, thereby creating blocks in which stimulus-response mapping was the same as in the previous block (nonshift blocks) and blocks in which it was reversed (shift blocks). The Food Cravings Questionnaires and the Barratt Impulsiveness Scale were used to assess trait and state food craving and attentional, motor, and nonplanning impulsivity. Participants had slower reaction times and more omission errors (OE) in high-calorie than in low-calorie blocks. Number of commission errors (CE) and OE was higher in shift blocks than in nonshift blocks. Trait impulsivity was positively correlated with CE in shift blocks while trait food craving was positively correlated with CE in high-calorie blocks. Importantly, CE in high-calorie-shift blocks were predicted by an interaction of food craving × impulsivity such that the relationship between food craving and CE was particularly strong at high levels of impulsivity, but vanished at low levels of impulsivity. Thus, impulsive reactions to high-calorie food-cues are particularly pronounced when both trait impulsivity and food craving is high, but low levels of impulsivity can compensate for high levels of trait food craving. Results support models of self-regulation which assume that interactive effects of low top-down control and strong reward sensitive, bottom-up mechanisms may determine eating-related disinhibition, ultimately leading to increased food intake.

  2. Stage structure alters how complexity affects stability of ecological networks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rudolf, V.H.W.; Lafferty, Kevin D.

    2011-01-01

    Resolving how complexity affects stability of natural communities is of key importance for predicting the consequences of biodiversity loss. Central to previous stability analysis has been the assumption that the resources of a consumer are substitutable. However, during their development, most species change diets; for instance, adults often use different resources than larvae or juveniles. Here, we show that such ontogenetic niche shifts are common in real ecological networks and that consideration of these shifts can alter which species are predicted to be at risk of extinction. Furthermore, niche shifts reduce and can even reverse the otherwise stabilizing effect of complexity. This pattern arises because species with several specialized life stages appear to be generalists at the species level but act as sequential specialists that are hypersensitive to resource loss. These results suggest that natural communities are more vulnerable to biodiversity loss than indicated by previous analyses.

  3. The role of marker traits in the assortative mating within red crossbills, Loxia curvirostra complex.

    PubMed

    Snowberg, L K; Benkman, C W

    2007-09-01

    We conducted mate choice experiments to determine whether differences in calls or bill morphology might influence assortative mating between call types of red crossbills (Loxia curvirostra complex) that have diverged in bill structure to specialize on different species of conifers. Females preferred males that gave calls that matched their own type, but did not prefer males that more closely approximated the average or optimal bill size of the female's call type. These results were consistent with our breeding simulations, which showed that females gained an indirect fitness benefit by choosing a male of her own call type because this reduced the production of offspring with morphologies that fell between adaptive peaks. However, choice based on bill morphology within a call type provided no further benefit. Calls, which crossbills learn from their parents, likely act as a marker trait indicative of the morphological adaptations of the group, allow for easy assessment of potential mates and facilitate rapid divergence under ecological selection. PMID:17714309

  4. A genome-wide linkage scan for quantitative trait loci influencing the craniofacial complex in humans(Homo sapiens sapiens)

    PubMed Central

    Sherwood, Richard J.; Duren, Dana L.; Mahaney, Michael C.; Blangero, John; Dyer, Thomas D.; Cole, Shelley A.; Czerwinski, Stefan A.; Chumlea, Wm. Cameron; Siervogel, Roger M.; Choh, Audrey C.; Nahhas, Ramzi W.; Lee, Miryoung; Towne, Bradford

    2011-01-01

    The genetic architecture of the craniofacial complex has been the subject of intense scrutiny because of the high frequency of congenital malformations. Numerous animal models have been used to document the early development of the craniofacial complex, but few studies have focused directly on the genetic underpinnings of normal variation in the human craniofacial complex. The current study examines 80 quantitative traits derived from lateral cephalographs of 981 participants in the Fels Longitudinal Study, Wright State University, Dayton, Ohio. Quantitative genetic analyses were conducted using the SOLAR analytic platform, a maximum-likelihood variance components method that incorporates all familial information for parameter estimation. Heritability estimates were significant and of moderate to high magnitude for all craniofacial traits. Additionally, significant quantitative trait loci (QTL) were identified for 10 traits from the three developmental components (basicranium, splanchnocranium, and neurocranium) of the craniofacial complex. These QTL were found on chromosomes 3, 6, 11, 12, and 14. This study of the genetic architecture of the craniofacial complex elucidates fundamental information of the genetic architecture of the craniofacial complex in humans. PMID:21328561

  5. MYB-FL controls gain and loss of floral UV absorbance, a key trait affecting pollinator preference and reproductive isolation.

    PubMed

    Sheehan, Hester; Moser, Michel; Klahre, Ulrich; Esfeld, Korinna; Dell'Olivo, Alexandre; Mandel, Therese; Metzger, Sabine; Vandenbussche, Michiel; Freitas, Loreta; Kuhlemeier, Cris

    2016-02-01

    Adaptations to new pollinators involve multiple floral traits, each requiring coordinated changes in multiple genes. Despite this genetic complexity, shifts in pollination syndromes have happened frequently during angiosperm evolution. Here we study the genetic basis of floral UV absorbance, a key trait for attracting nocturnal pollinators. In Petunia, mutations in a single gene, MYB-FL, explain two transitions in UV absorbance. A gain of UV absorbance in the transition from bee to moth pollination was determined by a cis-regulatory mutation, whereas a frameshift mutation caused subsequent loss of UV absorbance during the transition from moth to hummingbird pollination. The functional differences in MYB-FL provide insight into the process of speciation and clarify phylogenetic relationships between nascent species. PMID:26656847

  6. Physiologically-Indexed and Self-Perceived Affective Empathy in Conduct-Disordered Children High and Low on Callous-Unemotional Traits

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Anastassiou-Hadjicharalambous, Xenia; Warden, David

    2008-01-01

    Heart rate (HR) was employed to compare vicarious affective arousal across three groups of children (aged 7.6 - 11, N = 95): Conduct Disordered (CD) elevated on Callous-Unemotional traits ("CD/CU"), CD low on CU traits ("CD-only"), and "typically-developing" controls, matched in age, gender and socioeconomic background. While watching an emotion…

  7. Mapping Quantitative Trait Loci Affecting Biochemical and Morphological Fruit Properties in Eggplant (Solanum melongena L.).

    PubMed

    Toppino, Laura; Barchi, Lorenzo; Lo Scalzo, Roberto; Palazzolo, Eristanna; Francese, Gianluca; Fibiani, Marta; D'Alessandro, Antonietta; Papa, Vincenza; Laudicina, Vito A; Sabatino, Leo; Pulcini, Laura; Sala, Tea; Acciarri, Nazzareno; Portis, Ezio; Lanteri, Sergio; Mennella, Giuseppe; Rotino, Giuseppe L

    2016-01-01

    Eggplant berries are a source of health-promoting metabolites including antioxidant and nutraceutical compounds, mainly anthocyanins and chlorogenic acid; however, they also contain some anti-nutritional compounds such as steroidal glycoalkaloids (SGA) and saponins, which are responsible for the bitter taste of the flesh and with potential toxic effects on humans. Up to now, Quantitative Trait Loci (QTL) for the metabolic content are far from being characterized in eggplant, thus hampering the application of breeding programs aimed at improving its fruit quality. Here we report on the identification of some QTL for the fruit metabolic content in an F2 intraspecific mapping population of 156 individuals, obtained by crossing the eggplant breeding lines "305E40" × "67/3." The same population was previously employed for the development of a RAD-tag based linkage map and the identification of QTL associated to morphological and physiological traits. The mapping population was biochemically characterized for both fruit basic qualitative data, like dry matter, °Brix, sugars, and organic acids, as well as for health-related compounds such chlorogenic acid, (the main flesh monomeric phenol), the two peel anthocyanins [i.e., delphinidin-3-rutinoside (D3R) and delphinidin-3-(p- coumaroylrutinoside)-5-glucoside (nasunin)] and the two main steroidal glycoalkaloids, solasonine, and solamargine. For most of the traits, one major QTL (PVE ≥10%) was spotted and putative orthologies with other Solanaceae crops are discussed. The present results supply valuable information to eggplant breeders on the inheritance of key fruit quality traits, thus providing potential tools to assist future breeding programs. PMID:26973692

  8. Mapping Quantitative Trait Loci Affecting Biochemical and Morphological Fruit Properties in Eggplant (Solanum melongena L.).

    PubMed

    Toppino, Laura; Barchi, Lorenzo; Lo Scalzo, Roberto; Palazzolo, Eristanna; Francese, Gianluca; Fibiani, Marta; D'Alessandro, Antonietta; Papa, Vincenza; Laudicina, Vito A; Sabatino, Leo; Pulcini, Laura; Sala, Tea; Acciarri, Nazzareno; Portis, Ezio; Lanteri, Sergio; Mennella, Giuseppe; Rotino, Giuseppe L

    2016-01-01

    Eggplant berries are a source of health-promoting metabolites including antioxidant and nutraceutical compounds, mainly anthocyanins and chlorogenic acid; however, they also contain some anti-nutritional compounds such as steroidal glycoalkaloids (SGA) and saponins, which are responsible for the bitter taste of the flesh and with potential toxic effects on humans. Up to now, Quantitative Trait Loci (QTL) for the metabolic content are far from being characterized in eggplant, thus hampering the application of breeding programs aimed at improving its fruit quality. Here we report on the identification of some QTL for the fruit metabolic content in an F2 intraspecific mapping population of 156 individuals, obtained by crossing the eggplant breeding lines "305E40" × "67/3." The same population was previously employed for the development of a RAD-tag based linkage map and the identification of QTL associated to morphological and physiological traits. The mapping population was biochemically characterized for both fruit basic qualitative data, like dry matter, °Brix, sugars, and organic acids, as well as for health-related compounds such chlorogenic acid, (the main flesh monomeric phenol), the two peel anthocyanins [i.e., delphinidin-3-rutinoside (D3R) and delphinidin-3-(p- coumaroylrutinoside)-5-glucoside (nasunin)] and the two main steroidal glycoalkaloids, solasonine, and solamargine. For most of the traits, one major QTL (PVE ≥10%) was spotted and putative orthologies with other Solanaceae crops are discussed. The present results supply valuable information to eggplant breeders on the inheritance of key fruit quality traits, thus providing potential tools to assist future breeding programs.

  9. The association between affective psychopathic traits, time incarcerated, and cortisol response to psychosocial stress.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Megan M; Mikolajewski, Amy; Shirtcliff, Elizabeth A; Eckel, Lisa A; Taylor, Jeanette

    2015-06-01

    Previous research has demonstrated that psychopathic personality traits are significantly predictive of blunted cortisol reactivity to a performance-based stressor task (Trier Social Stress Test; TSST) in college students. However, the relationship between cortisol reactivity and psychopathy has not been explored in high risk samples such as incarcerated populations. Further, the role of imprisonment in relation to cortisol stress reactivity has not been previously explored, but could have practical and conceptual consequences in regard to rehabilitation and biological sensitivity to context, respectively. The current study tested the hypotheses that both psychopathic personality traits and amount of time incarcerated are related to cortisol blunting in response to stress among incarcerated young adults. A sample of 49 young adult male offenders was recruited to complete the TSST. Salivary hormone samples were taken just prior to and 20 min post-stressor, and participants were interviewed with the Psychopathy Checklist-Youth Version. Variables quantifying the amount of time at the present facility prior to the date of testing and number of commitments in juvenile facilities were also collected. Correlational analyses indicated that only number of incarcerations was related to blunted cortisol. Hierarchical Linear Modeling revealed that time incarcerated and number of commitments were related to a blunted cortisol response among responders and declining cortisol reactivity among nonresponders, respectively. Controlling for time incarcerated, psychopathic traits were significantly related to cortisol decline in response to the stressor among nonresponders, but were not related to blunted cortisol among responders. Results of this project highlight the potential biological effects of prolonged and repeated incarcerations, and extend our understanding about the relationship between psychopathic traits and cortisol reactivity in an incarcerated sample. PMID:25921588

  10. Mapping Quantitative Trait Loci Affecting Biochemical and Morphological Fruit Properties in Eggplant (Solanum melongena L.)

    PubMed Central

    Toppino, Laura; Barchi, Lorenzo; Lo Scalzo, Roberto; Palazzolo, Eristanna; Francese, Gianluca; Fibiani, Marta; D'Alessandro, Antonietta; Papa, Vincenza; Laudicina, Vito A.; Sabatino, Leo; Pulcini, Laura; Sala, Tea; Acciarri, Nazzareno; Portis, Ezio; Lanteri, Sergio; Mennella, Giuseppe; Rotino, Giuseppe L.

    2016-01-01

    Eggplant berries are a source of health-promoting metabolites including antioxidant and nutraceutical compounds, mainly anthocyanins and chlorogenic acid; however, they also contain some anti-nutritional compounds such as steroidal glycoalkaloids (SGA) and saponins, which are responsible for the bitter taste of the flesh and with potential toxic effects on humans. Up to now, Quantitative Trait Loci (QTL) for the metabolic content are far from being characterized in eggplant, thus hampering the application of breeding programs aimed at improving its fruit quality. Here we report on the identification of some QTL for the fruit metabolic content in an F2 intraspecific mapping population of 156 individuals, obtained by crossing the eggplant breeding lines “305E40” × “67/3.” The same population was previously employed for the development of a RAD-tag based linkage map and the identification of QTL associated to morphological and physiological traits. The mapping population was biochemically characterized for both fruit basic qualitative data, like dry matter, °Brix, sugars, and organic acids, as well as for health-related compounds such chlorogenic acid, (the main flesh monomeric phenol), the two peel anthocyanins [i.e., delphinidin-3-rutinoside (D3R) and delphinidin-3-(p- coumaroylrutinoside)-5-glucoside (nasunin)] and the two main steroidal glycoalkaloids, solasonine, and solamargine. For most of the traits, one major QTL (PVE ≥10%) was spotted and putative orthologies with other Solanaceae crops are discussed. The present results supply valuable information to eggplant breeders on the inheritance of key fruit quality traits, thus providing potential tools to assist future breeding programs. PMID:26973692

  11. Dynamic spatial patterns of leaf traits affect total respiration on the crown scale.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xiaolin; Zhou, Hongxuan; Han, Fengsen; Li, Yuanzheng; Hu, Dan

    2016-01-01

    Temporal and spatial variations of leaf traits caused conflicting conclusions and great estimating errors of total carbon budget on crown scales. However, there is no effective method to quantitatively describe and study heterogeneous patterns of crowns yet. In this study, dynamic spatial patterns of typical ecological factors on crown scales were investigated during two sky conditions, and CEZs (crown ecological zones) method was developed for spatial crown zoning, within which leaf traits were statistically unchanged. The influencing factors on hourly and spatial variations of leaf dark respiration (Rd) were analysed, and total crown respiration (Rt) was estimated based on patterns of CEZs. The results showed that dynamic spatial patterns of air temperature and light intensity changed significantly by CEZs in special periods and positions, but not continuously. The contributions of influencing factors on variations of Rd changed with crown depth and sky conditions, and total contributions of leaf structural and chemical traits were higher during sunny days than ecological factors, but lower during cloudy days. The estimated errors of Rt may be obviously reduced with CEZs. These results provided some references for scaling from leaves to crown, and technical foundations for expanding lab-control experiments to open field ones. PMID:27225586

  12. Dynamic spatial patterns of leaf traits affect total respiration on the crown scale

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Xiaolin; Zhou, Hongxuan; Han, Fengsen; Li, Yuanzheng; Hu, Dan

    2016-05-01

    Temporal and spatial variations of leaf traits caused conflicting conclusions and great estimating errors of total carbon budget on crown scales. However, there is no effective method to quantitatively describe and study heterogeneous patterns of crowns yet. In this study, dynamic spatial patterns of typical ecological factors on crown scales were investigated during two sky conditions, and CEZs (crown ecological zones) method was developed for spatial crown zoning, within which leaf traits were statistically unchanged. The influencing factors on hourly and spatial variations of leaf dark respiration (Rd) were analysed, and total crown respiration (Rt) was estimated based on patterns of CEZs. The results showed that dynamic spatial patterns of air temperature and light intensity changed significantly by CEZs in special periods and positions, but not continuously. The contributions of influencing factors on variations of Rd changed with crown depth and sky conditions, and total contributions of leaf structural and chemical traits were higher during sunny days than ecological factors, but lower during cloudy days. The estimated errors of Rt may be obviously reduced with CEZs. These results provided some references for scaling from leaves to crown, and technical foundations for expanding lab-control experiments to open field ones.

  13. Dynamic spatial patterns of leaf traits affect total respiration on the crown scale

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Xiaolin; Zhou, Hongxuan; Han, Fengsen; Li, Yuanzheng; Hu, Dan

    2016-01-01

    Temporal and spatial variations of leaf traits caused conflicting conclusions and great estimating errors of total carbon budget on crown scales. However, there is no effective method to quantitatively describe and study heterogeneous patterns of crowns yet. In this study, dynamic spatial patterns of typical ecological factors on crown scales were investigated during two sky conditions, and CEZs (crown ecological zones) method was developed for spatial crown zoning, within which leaf traits were statistically unchanged. The influencing factors on hourly and spatial variations of leaf dark respiration (Rd) were analysed, and total crown respiration (Rt) was estimated based on patterns of CEZs. The results showed that dynamic spatial patterns of air temperature and light intensity changed significantly by CEZs in special periods and positions, but not continuously. The contributions of influencing factors on variations of Rd changed with crown depth and sky conditions, and total contributions of leaf structural and chemical traits were higher during sunny days than ecological factors, but lower during cloudy days. The estimated errors of Rt may be obviously reduced with CEZs. These results provided some references for scaling from leaves to crown, and technical foundations for expanding lab-control experiments to open field ones. PMID:27225586

  14. How to dissect complex traits and how to choose suitable mapping resources for system genetics?. Comment on "Mapping complex traits as a dynamic system" by L. Sun and R. Wu

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Eeuwijk, Fred

    2015-06-01

    Sun and Wu [1] present an integral approach to the mapping of complex traits. Phenotypic traits are components belonging to a system together with other components, with all these components being interconnected and interacting over time and across levels of biological organisation. Following the terminology of Sun and Wu, the system initiates with variation at the level of DNA sequences and terminates with variation at the level of end point phenotypes. In between, we find variation at the levels of gene-expression, proteins, and metabolites. Before arriving at the end point phenotypes, many biochemical pathways need to be regulated and endophenotypes synthesised. To resolve the genetic architecture of complex traits, they need to be studied in relation to their underlying components, their interactions with other traits, and their development over time. Crucial is the identification of the mechanisms that govern the system and how quantitative trait loci (QTL) influence those mechanisms. Sun and Wu propose for any biological system a methodological framework that predicts physiological and pathological phenotypes as well as the consequences of genetic and environmental changes and interventions. This framework consists in a system of differential equations that drives variation in components and their mutual interactions and leads to developmental and functional changes. The differential equations allow capturing the dynamics of end point phenotypes and endophenotypes in relation to time and/or environmental factors. Simultaneously, QTLs underlie the constants in the differential equations and thereby can change developmental trajectories and environmental dependencies.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-05-28

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-05-28

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

  17. Hormones and the Evolution of Complex Traits: Insights from Artificial Selection on Behavior.

    PubMed

    Garland, Theodore; Zhao, Meng; Saltzman, Wendy

    2016-08-01

    Although behavior may often be a fairly direct target of natural or sexual selection, it cannot evolve without changes in subordinate traits that cause or permit its expression. In principle, changes in endocrine function could be a common mechanism underlying behavioral evolution because they are well positioned to mediate integrated responses to behavioral selection. More specifically, hormones can influence both motivational (e.g., brain) and performance (e.g., muscles) components of behavior simultaneously and in a coordinated fashion. If the endocrine system is often "used" as a general mechanism to effect responses to selection, then correlated responses in other aspects of behavior, life history, and organismal performance (e.g., locomotor abilities) should commonly occur because any cell with appropriate receptors could be affected. Ways in which behavior coadapts with other aspects of the phenotype can be studied directly through artificial selection and experimental evolution. Several studies have targeted rodent behavior for selective breeding and reported changes in other aspects of behavior, life history, and lower-level effectors of these organismal traits, including endocrine function. One example involves selection for high levels of voluntary wheel running, one aspect of physical activity, in four replicate High Runner (HR) lines of mice. Circulating levels of several hormones (including insulin, testosterone, thyroxine, triiodothyronine) have been characterized, three of which-corticosterone, leptin, and adiponectin-differ between HR and control lines, depending on sex, age, and generation. Potential changes in circulating levels of other behaviorally and metabolically relevant hormones, as well as in other components of the endocrine system (e.g., receptors), have yet to be examined. Overall, results to date identify promising avenues for further studies on the endocrine basis of activity levels. PMID:27252193

  18. Plant Trait Assembly Affects Superiority of Grazer's Foraging Strategies in Species-Rich Grasslands

    PubMed Central

    Mládek, Jan; Mládková, Pavla; Hejcmanová, Pavla; Dvorský, Miroslav; Pavlu, Vilém; De Bello, Francesco; Duchoslav, Martin; Hejcman, Michal; Pakeman, Robin J.

    2013-01-01

    Background Current plant – herbivore interaction models and experiments with mammalian herbivores grazing plant monocultures show the superiority of a maximizing forage quality strategy (MFQ) over a maximizing intake strategy (MI). However, there is a lack of evidence whether grazers comply with the model predictions under field conditions. Methodology/Findings We assessed diet selection of sheep (Ovis aries) using plant functional traits in productive mesic vs. low-productivity dry species-rich grasslands dominated by resource-exploitative vs. resource-conservative species respectively. Each grassland type was studied in two replicates for two years. We investigated the first grazing cycle in a set of 288 plots with a diameter of 30 cm, i.e. the size of sheep feeding station. In mesic grasslands, high plot defoliation was associated with community weighted means of leaf traits referring to high forage quality, i.e. low leaf dry matter content (LDMC) and high specific leaf area (SLA), with a high proportion of legumes and the most with high community weighted mean of forage indicator value. In contrast in dry grasslands, high community weighted mean of canopy height, an estimate of forage quantity, was the best predictor of plot defoliation. Similar differences in selection on forage quality vs. quantity were detected within plots. Sheep selected plants with higher forage indicator values than the plot specific community weighted mean of forage indicator value in mesic grasslands whereas taller plants were selected in dry grasslands. However, at this scale sheep avoided legumes and plants with higher SLA, preferred plants with higher LDMC while grazing plants with higher forage indicator values in mesic grasslands. Conclusions Our findings indicate that MFQ appears superior over MI only in habitats with a predominance of resource-exploitative species. Furthermore, plant functional traits (LDMC, SLA, nitrogen fixer) seem to be helpful correlates of forage quality

  19. The genetic architecture of a complex ecological trait: host plant use in the specialist moth, HELIOTHIS SUBFLEXA

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The study of the genetic basis of ecological adaptation remains in its infancy, and most studies have focused on phenotypically simple traits. Host plant use by herbivorous insects is phenotypically complex. While research has illuminated the evolutionary determinants of host use, knowledge of its...

  20. A novel analytical method detects response of the Angus (Bos taurus) genome to artificial selection on complex traits

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Several methods have recently been developed to identify selective sweeps within genomes. However, recent theoretical and empirical work suggests that polygenic models are required to identify the genomic regions that have responded to selection on complex traits. Using DNA samples from US registe...

  1. The Genetic Architecture of Complex Traits in Teosinte (Zea mays ssp. parviglumis): New Evidence from Association Mapping

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Our previous association analyses showed that variation at major regulatory genes contributes to standing variation for complex traits in Balsas teosinte, the progenitor of maize. This study expands our previous association mapping effort in teosinte by testing 123 markers in 52 candidate genes for ...

  2. Shelf-life versus flavour-life for fruits and vegetables: how to evaluate this complex trait

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This review highlights progress made in the recent past in understanding the flavor quality of fruits and vegetables, how it is perceived, how to evaluate this trait, and how it is affected by harvest maturity and postharvest handling. The field of flavor chemistry and sensory science is rapidly ev...

  3. Susceptibility to Predation Affects Trait-Mediated Indirect Interactions by Reversing Interspecific Competition

    PubMed Central

    Mowles, Sophie L.; Rundle, Simon D.; Cotton, Peter A.

    2011-01-01

    Numerous studies indicate that the behavioral responses of prey to the presence of predators can have an important role in structuring assemblages through trait-mediated indirect interactions. Few studies, however, have addressed how relative susceptibility to predation influences such interactions. Here we examine the effect of chemical cues from the common shore crab Carcinus maenas on the foraging behavior of two common intertidal gastropod molluscs. Of the two model consumers studied, Littorina littorea is morphologically more vulnerable to crab predation than Gibbula umbilicalis, and it exhibited greater competitive ability in the absence of predation threat. However, Littorina demonstrated a greater anti-predator response when experimentally exposed to predation cues, resulting in a lower level of foraging. This reversed the competitive interaction, allowing Gibbula substantially increased access to shared resources. Our results demonstrate that the susceptibility of consumers to predation can influence species interactions, and suggest that inter-specific differences in trait-mediated indirect interactions are another mechanism through which non-consumptive predator effects may influence trophic interactions. PMID:21857993

  4. Habitat traits and species interactions differentially affect abundance and body size in pond-breeding amphibians.

    PubMed

    Ousterhout, Brittany H; Anderson, Thomas L; Drake, Dana L; Peterman, William E; Semlitsch, Raymond D

    2015-07-01

    In recent studies, habitat traits have emerged as stronger predictors of species occupancy, abundance, richness and diversity than competition. However, in many cases, it remains unclear whether habitat also mediates processes more subtle than competitive exclusion, such as growth, or whether intra- and interspecific interactions among individuals of different species may be better predictors of size. To test whether habitat traits are a stronger predictor of abundance and body size than intra- and interspecific interactions, we measured the density and body size of three species of larval salamanders in 192 ponds across a landscape. We found that the density of larvae was best predicted by models that included habitat features, while models incorporating interactions among individuals of different species best explained the body size of larvae. Additionally, we found a positive relationship between focal species density and congener density, while focal species body size was negatively related to congener density. We posit that salamander larvae may not experience competitive exclusion and thus reduced densities, but instead compensate for increased competition behaviourally (e.g. reduced foraging), resulting in decreased growth. The discrepancy between larval density and body size, a strong predictor of fitness in this system, also highlights a potential shortcoming in using density or abundance as a metric of habitat quality or population health. PMID:25643605

  5. Habitat traits and species interactions differentially affect abundance and body size in pond-breeding amphibians.

    PubMed

    Ousterhout, Brittany H; Anderson, Thomas L; Drake, Dana L; Peterman, William E; Semlitsch, Raymond D

    2015-07-01

    In recent studies, habitat traits have emerged as stronger predictors of species occupancy, abundance, richness and diversity than competition. However, in many cases, it remains unclear whether habitat also mediates processes more subtle than competitive exclusion, such as growth, or whether intra- and interspecific interactions among individuals of different species may be better predictors of size. To test whether habitat traits are a stronger predictor of abundance and body size than intra- and interspecific interactions, we measured the density and body size of three species of larval salamanders in 192 ponds across a landscape. We found that the density of larvae was best predicted by models that included habitat features, while models incorporating interactions among individuals of different species best explained the body size of larvae. Additionally, we found a positive relationship between focal species density and congener density, while focal species body size was negatively related to congener density. We posit that salamander larvae may not experience competitive exclusion and thus reduced densities, but instead compensate for increased competition behaviourally (e.g. reduced foraging), resulting in decreased growth. The discrepancy between larval density and body size, a strong predictor of fitness in this system, also highlights a potential shortcoming in using density or abundance as a metric of habitat quality or population health.

  6. Novel polymorphisms of the APOA2 gene and its promoter region affect body traits in cattle.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Yang; Li, Caixia; Cai, Hanfang; Xu, Yao; Lan, Xianyong; Lei, Chuzhao; Chen, Hong

    2013-12-01

    Apolipoprotein A-II (APOA2) is one of the major constituents of high-density lipoprotein and plays a critical role in lipid metabolism and obesity. However, similar research for the bovine APOA2 gene is lacking. In this study, polymorphisms of the bovine APOA2 gene and its promoter region were detected in 1021 cows from four breeds by sequencing and PCR-RFLP methods. Totally, we detected six novel mutations which included one mutation in the promoter region, two mutations in the exons and three mutations in the introns. There were four polymorphisms within APOA2 gene were analyzed. The allele A, T, T and G frequencies of the four loci were predominant in the four breeds when in separate or combinations analysis which suggested cows with those alleles to be more adapted to the steppe environment. The association analysis indicated three SVs in Nangyang cows, two SVs in Qinchun cows and the 9 haplotypes in Nangyang cows were significantly associated with body traits (P<0.05 or P<0.01). The results of this study suggested the bovine APOA2 gene may be a strong candidate gene for body traits in the cattle breeding program. PMID:24004543

  7. Susceptibility to predation affects trait-mediated indirect interactions by reversing interspecific competition.

    PubMed

    Mowles, Sophie L; Rundle, Simon D; Cotton, Peter A

    2011-01-01

    Numerous studies indicate that the behavioral responses of prey to the presence of predators can have an important role in structuring assemblages through trait-mediated indirect interactions. Few studies, however, have addressed how relative susceptibility to predation influences such interactions. Here we examine the effect of chemical cues from the common shore crab Carcinus maenas on the foraging behavior of two common intertidal gastropod molluscs. Of the two model consumers studied, Littorina littorea is morphologically more vulnerable to crab predation than Gibbula umbilicalis, and it exhibited greater competitive ability in the absence of predation threat. However, Littorina demonstrated a greater anti-predator response when experimentally exposed to predation cues, resulting in a lower level of foraging. This reversed the competitive interaction, allowing Gibbula substantially increased access to shared resources. Our results demonstrate that the susceptibility of consumers to predation can influence species interactions, and suggest that inter-specific differences in trait-mediated indirect interactions are another mechanism through which non-consumptive predator effects may influence trophic interactions. PMID:21857993

  8. Trait anxiety and post-learning stress do not affect perceptual learning.

    PubMed

    Aberg, Kristoffer C; Clarke, Aaron M; Sandi, Carmen; Herzog, Michael H

    2012-10-01

    While it is well established that stress can modulate declarative learning, very few studies have investigated the influence of stress on non-declarative learning. Here, we studied the influence of post-learning stress, which effectively modulates declarative learning, on perceptual learning of a visual texture discrimination task (TDT). On day one, participants trained for one session with TDT and were instructed that they, at any time, could be exposed to either a high stressor (ice-water; Cold Pressor Test; CPT) or a low stressor (warm water). Participants did not know when or which stressor they would be exposed to. To determine the impact of the stressor on TDT learning, all participants returned the following day to perform another TDT session. Only participants exposed to the high stressor had significantly elevated cortisol levels. However, there was no difference in TDT improvements from day one to day two between the groups. Recent studies suggested that trait anxiety modulates visual perception under anticipation of stressful events. Here, trait anxiety did neither modulate performance nor influence responsiveness to stress. These results do not support a modulatory role for stress on non-declarative perceptual learning.

  9. Comparable Low-Level Mosaicism in Affected and Non Affected Tissue of a Complex CDH Patient

    PubMed Central

    Veenma, Danielle; Beurskens, Niels; Douben, Hannie; Eussen, Bert; Noomen, Petra; Govaerts, Lutgarde; Grijseels, Els; Lequin, Maarten; de Krijger, Ronald; Tibboel, Dick; de Klein, Annelies; Van Opstal, Dian

    2010-01-01

    In this paper we present the detailed clinical and cytogenetic analysis of a prenatally detected complex Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia (CDH) patient with a mosaic unbalanced translocation (5;12). High-resolution whole genome SNP array confirmed a low-level mosaicism (20%) in uncultured cells, underlining the value of array technology for identification studies. Subsequently, targeted Fluorescence In-Situ Hybridization in postmortem collected tissues demonstrated a similar low-level mosaicism, independently of the affected status of the tissue. Thus, a higher incidence of the genetic aberration in affected organs as lung and diaphragm cannot explain the severe phenotype of this complex CDH patient. Comparison with other described chromosome 5p and 12p anomalies indicated that half of the features presented in our patient (including the diaphragm defect) could be attributed to both chromosomal areas. In contrast, a few features such as the palpebral downslant, the broad nasal bridge, the micrognathia, microcephaly, abnormal dermatoglyphics and IUGR better fitted the 5p associated syndromes only. This study underlines the fact that low-level mosaicism can be associated with severe birth defects including CDH. The contribution of mosaicism to human diseases and specifically to congenital anomalies and spontaneous abortions becomes more and more accepted, although its phenotypic consequences are poorly described phenomena leading to counseling issues. Therefore, thorough follow–up of mosaic aberrations such as presented here is indicated in order to provide genetic counselors a more evidence based prediction of fetal prognosis in the future. PMID:21203572

  10. Transcriptome expression analysis of candidate milk genes affecting cheese-related traits in 2 sheep breeds.

    PubMed

    Suárez-Vega, A; Gutiérrez-Gil, B; Arranz, J J

    2016-08-01

    Because ewe milk is principally used for cheese making, its quality is related to its content of total solids and the way in which milk constituents influence cheese yield and determine the technological and organoleptic characteristics of dairy products. Therefore, an in-depth knowledge of the expression levels of milk genes influencing cheese-related traits is essential. In the present study, the milk transcriptome data set of 2 dairy sheep breeds, Assaf and Spanish Churra, was used to evaluate the expression levels of 77 transcripts related to cheese yield and quality traits. For the comparison between both breeds, we selected the RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq) data at d 10 of lactation because this is the time point at which within and between breed differences due to lactation length are minimal. The evaluated genes encode major milk proteins (caseins and whey proteins), endogenous proteases, and enzymes related to fatty acid metabolism and citrate content. Through this analysis, we identified the genes predominantly expressed in each of the analyzed pathways that appear to be key genes for traits related to sheep milk cheese. Among the highly expressed genes in both breeds were the genes encoding caseins and whey proteins (CSN2, CSN3, CSN1S1, ENSOARG00000005099/PAEP, CSN1S2, LALBA), genes related to lipid metabolism (BTN1A1, XDH, FASN, ADFP, SCD, H-FABP, ACSS2), and one endogenous protease (CTSB). Moreover, a differential expression analysis between Churra and Assaf sheep allowed us to identify 7 genes that are significantly differentially expressed between the 2 breeds. These genes were mainly linked to endogenous protease activity (CTSL, CTSK, KLK10, KLK6, SERPINE2). Additionally, there were 2 differentially expressed genes coding for an intracellular fatty acid transporter (FABP4), an intermediate molecule of the citric acid cycle (SUCNR1), and 2 heat shock proteins (HSP70, HSPB8) that could be related to high protein production. The differential expression of

  11. Cognitive Ability and Non-Ability Trait Determinants of Expertise

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ackerman, Phillip L.

    2003-01-01

    Traditional approaches to understanding individual differences determinants of domain-specific expertise have focused on individual trait components, such as ability or topic interest. In contrast, trait complex approaches consider whether combinations of cognitive, affective, and conative traits are particularly facilitative or impeding of the…

  12. Tree species and functional traits but not species richness affect interrill erosion processes in young subtropical forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seitz, S.; Goebes, P.; Song, Z.; Bruelheide, H.; Härdtle, W.; Kühn, P.; Li, Y.; Scholten, T.

    2016-01-01

    Soil erosion is seriously threatening ecosystem functioning in many parts of the world. In this context, it is assumed that tree species richness and functional diversity of tree communities can play a critical role in improving ecosystem services such as erosion control. An experiment with 170 micro-scale run-off plots was conducted to investigate the influence of tree species and tree species richness as well as functional traits on interrill erosion in a young forest ecosystem. An interrill erosion rate of 47.5 Mg ha-1 a-1 was calculated. This study provided evidence that different tree species affect interrill erosion differently, while tree species richness did not affect interrill erosion in young forest stands. Thus, different tree morphologies have to be considered, when assessing soil erosion under forest. High crown cover and leaf area index reduced interrill erosion in initial forest ecosystems, whereas rising tree height increased it. Even if a leaf litter cover was not present, the remaining soil surface cover by stones and biological soil crusts was the most important driver for soil erosion control. Furthermore, soil organic matter had a decreasing influence on interrill erosion. Long-term monitoring of soil erosion under closing tree canopies is necessary, and a wide range of functional tree traits should be considered in future research.

  13. Over-seasons analysis of quantitative trait loci affecting phenolic content and antioxidant capacity in raspberry.

    PubMed

    Dobson, Patricia; Graham, Julie; Stewart, D; Brennan, Rex; Hackett, Christine A; McDougall, Gordon J

    2012-05-30

    This study examined the total phenol content (TPC) and total anthocyanin content (TAC) in ripe fruit of progeny of a mapping population generated from a cross between the European red raspberry cv. Glen Moy ( Rubus ideaus var. idaeus) and the North American red raspberry cv. Latham ( Rubus ideaus var. strigosus) over five seasons in two different growing environments. Measurements of antioxidant capacity (FRAP and TEAC) were also carried out. TPC was highly correlated with TEAC and FRAP across the entire data set. The subset of anthocyanin content was genotype-dependent but also correlated with TPC, although the proportion of anthocyanin compounds varied between progeny. Quantitative trait locus (QTL) analysis was carried out, and key markers were tested for consistency of effects over sites and years. Four regions, on linkage groups 2, 3, 5, and 6, were identified. These agree with QTLs from a previous study over a single season and indicate that QTL effects were robust over seasons.

  14. Pre-freezing raw hams affects quality traits in cooked hams: potential influence of protein oxidation.

    PubMed

    Utrera, M; Armenteros, M; Ventanas, S; Solano, F; Estévez, M

    2012-12-01

    The influence of protein carbonylation and lipid oxidation on colour and texture changes in cooked hams from fresh and pre-frozen (frozen/thawed) raw material was studied. Samples from three muscles, biceps femoris (BF) quadriceps femoris (QF) and semimembranosus (SM) were analysed for the gain of specific protein carbonyls, α-aminoadipic and γ-glutamic semialdehydes, the gain of TBA-RS and their colour and texture properties by instrumental and sensory techniques. The formation of protein carbonyls occurred concomitantly with an intense loss of redness and increase of hardness. Both phenomena were found to be more intense in QF and SM muscles in cooked hams elaborated from frozen material. Lipid oxidation played a negligible role on the impaired quality traits observed in cooked hams as a result of pre-freezing. Plausible mechanisms by which protein carbonylation may be implicated in the loss of quality in cooked hams produced from pre-frozen material are discussed.

  15. Early experience affects the traits of monogamy in a sexually dimorphic manner.

    PubMed

    Bales, Karen L; Lewis-Reese, Antoniah D; Pfeifer, Lisa A; Kramer, Kristin M; Carter, C Sue

    2007-05-01

    The goal of this study was to examine the effects of early life experiences on the subsequent expression of traits characteristic of social monogamy in prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster). During cage changes parents and their offspring were either transferred between cages in a cup (zero manipulation, MAN0) or with a gloved hand (one manipulation, MAN1). Following weaning the offspring were tested for alloparental behavior. In adulthood they were tested for the capacity to form partner preferences, behavior in an elevated plus-maze (EPM), and corticosterone levels. MAN0 males (but not females) showed lower levels of alloparental behavior than MAN1 males. MAN0 females (but not males) were less likely to form pair bonds than MAN1 females. MAN0 animals of both sexes were less exploratory in the EPM than MAN1 counterparts. These experiments support the hypothesis that behaviors used to characterize monogamy are vulnerable in a sex-specific manner to early experience. PMID:17455224

  16. Phylogenetic conservatism of functional traits in microorganisms.

    PubMed

    Martiny, Adam C; Treseder, Kathleen; Pusch, Gordon

    2013-04-01

    A central question in biology is how biodiversity influences ecosystem functioning. Underlying this is the relationship between organismal phylogeny and the presence of specific functional traits. The relationship is complicated by gene loss and convergent evolution, resulting in the polyphyletic distribution of many traits. In microorganisms, lateral gene transfer can further distort the linkage between phylogeny and the presence of specific functional traits. To identify the phylogenetic conservation of specific traits in microorganisms, we developed a new phylogenetic metric-consenTRAIT-to estimate the clade depth where organisms share a trait. We then analyzed the distribution of 89 functional traits across a broad range of Bacteria and Archaea using genotypic and phenotypic data. A total of 93% of the traits were significantly non-randomly distributed, which suggested that vertical inheritance was generally important for the phylogenetic dispersion of functional traits in microorganisms. Further, traits in microbes were associated with a continuum of trait depths (τD), ranging from a few deep to many shallow clades (average τD: 0.101-0.0011 rRNA sequence dissimilarity). Next, we demonstrated that the dispersion and the depth of clades that contain a trait is correlated with the trait's complexity. Specifically, complex traits encoded by many genes like photosynthesis and methanogenesis were found in a few deep clusters, whereas the ability to use simple carbon substrates was highly phylogenetically dispersed. On the basis of these results, we propose a framework for predicting the phylogenetic conservatism of functional traits depending on the complexity of the trait. This framework enables predicting how variation in microbial composition may affect microbially-mediated ecosystem processes as well as linking phylogenetic and trait-based patterns of biogeography.

  17. Indirect genetic effects and inbreeding: consequences of BLUP selection for socially affected traits on rate of inbreeding

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Social interactions often occur among living organisms, including aquatic animals. There is empirical evidence showing that social interactions may genetically affect phenotypes of individuals and their group mates. In this context, the heritable effect of an individual on the phenotype of another individual is known as an Indirect Genetic Effect (IGE). Selection for socially affected traits may increase response to artificial selection, but also affect rate of inbreeding. Methods A simulation study was conducted to examine the effect of Best Linear Unbiased Prediction (BLUP) selection for socially affected traits on the rate of inbreeding. A base scenario without IGE and three alternative scenarios with different magnitudes of IGE were simulated. In each generation, 25 sires and 50 dams were mated, producing eight progeny per dam. The population was selected for 20 generations using BLUP. Individuals were randomly assigned to groups of eight members in each generation, with two families per group, each contributing four individuals. “Heritabilities” (for both direct and indirect genetic effects) were equal to 0.1, 0.3 or 0.5, and direct–indirect genetic correlations were −0.8, −0.4, 0, 0.4, or 0.8. The rate of inbreeding was calculated from generation 10 to 20. Results For the base scenario, the rates of inbreeding were 4.09, 2.80 and 1.95% for “heritabilities” of 0.1, 0.3 and 0.5, respectively. Overall, rates of inbreeding for the three scenarios with IGE ranged from 2.21 to 5.76% and were greater than for the base scenarios. The results show that social interaction within groups of two families increases the resemblance between estimated breeding values of relatives, which, in turn, increases the rate of inbreeding. Conclusion BLUP selection for socially affected traits increased the rate of inbreeding. To maintain inbreeding at an acceptable rate, a selection algorithm that restricts the increase in mean kinship, such as optimum

  18. Life history traits and exploitation affect the spatial mean-variance relationship in fish abundance.

    PubMed

    Kuo, Ting-chun; Mandal, Sandip; Yamauchi, Atsushi; Hsieh, Chih-hao

    2016-05-01

    Fishing is expected to alter the spatial heterogeneity of fishes. As an effective index to quantify spatial heterogeneity, the exponent b in Taylor's power law (V = aMb) measures how spatial variance (V) varies with changes in mean abundance (M) of a population, with larger b indicating higher spatial aggregation potential (i.e., more heterogeneity). Theory predicts b is related with life history traits, but empirical evidence is lacking. Using 50-yr spatiotemporal data from the California Current Ecosystem, we examined fishing and life history effects on Taylor's exponent by comparing spatial distributions of exploited and unexploited fishes living in the same environment. We found that unexploited species with smaller size and generation time exhibit larger b, supporting theoretical prediction. In contrast, this relationship in exploited species is much weaker, as the exponents of large exploited species were higher than unexploited species with similar traits. Our results suggest that fishing may increase spatial aggregation potential of a species, likely through degrading their size/age structure. Results of moving-window cross-correlation analyses on b vs. age structure indices (mean age and age evenness) for some exploited species corroborate our findings. Furthermore, through linking our findings to other fundamental ecological patterns (occupancy-abundance and size-abundance relationships), we provide theoretical arguments for the usefulness of monitoring the exponent b for management purposes. We propose that age/size-truncated species might have lower recovery rate in spatial occupancy, and the spatial variance-mass relationship of a species might be non-linear. Our findings provide theoretical basis explaining why fishery management strategy should be concerned with changes to the age and spatial structure of exploited fishes. PMID:27349101

  19. Quantifying the heritability of glioma using genome-wide complex trait analysis

    PubMed Central

    Kinnersley, Ben; Mitchell, Jonathan S.; Gousias, Konstantinos; Schramm, Johannes; Idbaih, Ahmed; Labussière, Marianne; Marie, Yannick; Rahimian, Amithys; Wichmann, H.-Erich; Schreiber, Stefan; Hoang-Xuan, Khe; Delattre, Jean-Yves; Nöthen, Markus M.; Mokhtari, Karima; Lathrop, Mark; Bondy, Melissa; Simon, Matthias; Sanson, Marc; Houlston, Richard S.

    2015-01-01

    Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have successfully identified a number of common single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) influencing glioma risk. While these SNPs only explain a small proportion of the genetic risk it is unclear how much is left to be detected by other, yet to be identified, common SNPs. Therefore, we applied Genome-Wide Complex Trait Analysis (GCTA) to three GWAS datasets totalling 3,373 cases and 4,571 controls and performed a meta-analysis to estimate the heritability of glioma. Our results identify heritability estimates of 25% (95% CI: 20–31%, P = 1.15 × 10−17) for all forms of glioma - 26% (95% CI: 17–35%, P = 1.05 × 10−8) for glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) and 25% (95% CI: 17–32%, P = 1.26 × 10−10) for non-GBM tumors. This is a substantial increase from the genetic variance identified by the currently identified GWAS risk loci (~6% of common heritability), indicating that most of the heritable risk attributable to common genetic variants remains to be identified. PMID:26625949

  20. Tissue-Specific Genetic Control of Splicing: Implications for the Study of Complex Traits

    PubMed Central

    Cronin, Kenneth D; Maia, Jessica M; Shianna, Kevin V; Gabriel, Willow N; Welsh-Bohmer, Kathleen A; Hulette, Christine M; Denny, Thomas N; Goldstein, David B

    2008-01-01

    Numerous genome-wide screens for polymorphisms that influence gene expression have provided key insights into the genetic control of transcription. Despite this work, the relevance of specific polymorphisms to in vivo expression and splicing remains unclear. We carried out the first genome-wide screen, to our knowledge, for SNPs that associate with alternative splicing and gene expression in human primary cells, evaluating 93 autopsy-collected cortical brain tissue samples with no defined neuropsychiatric condition and 80 peripheral blood mononucleated cell samples collected from living healthy donors. We identified 23 high confidence associations with total expression and 80 with alternative splicing as reflected by expression levels of specific exons. Fewer than 50% of the implicated SNPs however show effects in both tissue types, reflecting strong evidence for distinct genetic control of splicing and expression in the two tissue types. The data generated here also suggest the possibility that splicing effects may be responsible for up to 13 out of 84 reported genome-wide significant associations with human traits. These results emphasize the importance of establishing a database of polymorphisms affecting splicing and expression in primary tissue types and suggest that splicing effects may be of more phenotypic significance than overall gene expression changes. PMID:19222302

  1. The complex tale of the high oleic acid trait in peanut (Arachis hypogaea L.)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Fatty acid composition of oil extracted from peanut (Arachis hypogaea L.) seed is an important quality trait. In particular, a high ratio of oleic (C18:1) relative to linoleic (C18:2) fatty acid (O/L = 10) results in a longer shelf life. Previous reports suggest that the high oleic (~80%) trait wa...

  2. Yes, but are they happy? Effects of trait self-control on affective well-being and life satisfaction.

    PubMed

    Hofmann, Wilhelm; Luhmann, Maike; Fisher, Rachel R; Vohs, Kathleen D; Baumeister, Roy F

    2014-08-01

    Does trait self-control (TSC) predict affective well-being and life satisfaction--positively, negatively, or not? We conducted three studies (Study 1: N = 414, 64% female, Mage = 35.0 years; Study 2: N = 208, 66% female, Mage = 25.24 years; Study 3: N = 234, 61% female, Mage = 34.53 years). The key predictor was TSC, with affective well-being and life satisfaction ratings as key outcomes. Potential explanatory constructs including goal conflict, goal balancing, and emotional distress also were investigated. TSC is positively related to affective well-being and life satisfaction, and managing goal conflict is a key as to why. All studies, moreover, showed that the effect of TSC on life satisfaction is at least partially mediated by affect. Study 1's correlational study established the effect. Study 2's experience sampling approach demonstrated that compared to those low in TSC, those high in TSC experience higher levels of momentary affect even as they experience desire, an effect partially mediated through experiencing lower conflict and emotional distress. Study 3 found evidence for the proposed mechanism--that TSC may boost well-being by helping people avoid frequent conflict and balance vice-virtue conflicts by favoring virtues. Self-control positively contributes to happiness through avoiding and dealing with motivational conflict.

  3. Does Leisure Time as a Stress Coping Resource Increase Affective Complexity? Applying the Dynamic Model of Affect (DMA).

    PubMed

    Qian, Xinyi Lisa; Yarnal, Careen M; Almeida, David M

    2013-01-01

    Affective complexity, a manifestation of psychological well-being, refers to the relative independence between positive and negative affect (PA, NA). According to the Dynamic Model of Affect (DMA), stressful situations lead to highly inverse PA-NA relationship, reducing affective complexity. Meanwhile, positive events can sustain affective complexity by restoring PA-NA independence. Leisure, a type of positive events, has been identified as a coping resource. This study used the DMA to assess whether leisure time helps restore affective complexity on stressful days. We found that on days with more leisure time than usual, an individual experienced less negative PA-NA relationship after daily stressful events. The finding demonstrates the value of leisure time as a coping resource and the DMA's contribution to coping research. PMID:24659826

  4. Does Leisure Time as a Stress Coping Resource Increase Affective Complexity? Applying the Dynamic Model of Affect (DMA)

    PubMed Central

    Qian, Xinyi (Lisa); Yarnal, Careen M.; Almeida, David M.

    2013-01-01

    Affective complexity, a manifestation of psychological well-being, refers to the relative independence between positive and negative affect (PA, NA). According to the Dynamic Model of Affect (DMA), stressful situations lead to highly inverse PA-NA relationship, reducing affective complexity. Meanwhile, positive events can sustain affective complexity by restoring PA-NA independence. Leisure, a type of positive events, has been identified as a coping resource. This study used the DMA to assess whether leisure time helps restore affective complexity on stressful days. We found that on days with more leisure time than usual, an individual experienced less negative PA-NA relationship after daily stressful events. The finding demonstrates the value of leisure time as a coping resource and the DMA’s contribution to coping research. PMID:24659826

  5. Detection of quantitative trait loci affecting response to crowding stress in rainbow trout

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Aquaculture environmental stressors such as handling, overcrowding, sub-optimal water quality parameters and social interactions negatively impact growth, feed intake, feed efficiency, disease resistance, flesh quality and reproductive performance in rainbow trout. To identify QTL affecting response...

  6. Behavioral Traits are Affected by Selective Breeding for Increased Wheel-Running Behavior in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Jónás, I.; Schubert, K. A.; Reijne, A. C.; Scholte, J.; Garland, T.; Gerkema, M. P.; Scheurink, A. J. W.; Nyakas, C.

    2010-01-01

    Voluntary physical activity may be related to personality traits. Here, we investigated these relations in two mouse lines selectively bred for high voluntary wheel-running behavior and in one non-selected control line. Selection lines were more explorative and “information gathering” in the open-field test, either with increased upright positions or horizontal locomotion toward the middle ring. Furthermore, one of the selection lines had an increased risk-taking behavior relative to the control line in approaching a novel object placed in the center of the open field. However, anxiety behavior was increased in selection lines during the plus-maze test. Maze learning was not statistically different among lines, but routine behavior was increased in both selection lines when the maze exit after 2 days of testing was displaced. Specifically, in the displaced maze, selected mice traveled more frequently to the old, habituated exit, bypassing the new exit attached to their home cage. Although the generality of the results would need to be confirmed in future studies including all eight lines in the selection experiment, the increased routine and exploratory behavior (at least in the lines used in the present study) may be adaptive to sustain high activity levels. PMID:20369280

  7. Phenotypic plasticity in growth and fecundity induced by strong population fluctuations affects reproductive traits of female fish.

    PubMed

    Karjalainen, Juha; Urpanen, Olli; Keskinen, Tapio; Huuskonen, Hannu; Sarvala, Jouko; Valkeajärvi, Pentti; Marjomäki, Timo J

    2016-02-01

    Fish are known for their high phenotypic plasticity in life-history traits in relation to environmental variability, and this is particularly pronounced among salmonids in the Northern Hemisphere. Resource limitation leads to trade-offs in phenotypic plasticity between life-history traits related to the reproduction, growth, and survival of individual fish, which have consequences for the age and size distributions of populations, as well as their dynamics and productivity. We studied the effect of plasticity in growth and fecundity of vendace females on their reproductive traits using a series of long-term incubation experiments. The wild parental fish originated from four separate populations with markedly different densities, and hence naturally induced differences in their growth and fecundity. The energy allocation to somatic tissues and eggs prior to spawning served as a proxy for total resource availability to individual females, and its effects on offspring survival and growth were analyzed. Vendace females allocated a rather constant proportion of available energy to eggs (per body mass) despite different growth patterns depending on the total resources in the different lakes; investment into eggs thus dictated the share remaining for growth. The energy allocation to eggs per mass was higher in young than in old spawners and the egg size and the relative fecundity differed between them: Young females produced more and smaller eggs and larvae than old spawners. In contrast to earlier observations of salmonids, a shortage of maternal food resources did not increase offspring size and survival. Vendace females in sparse populations with ample resources and high growth produced larger eggs and larvae. Vendace accommodate strong population fluctuations by their high plasticity in growth and fecundity, which affect their offspring size and consequently their recruitment and productivity, and account for their persistence and resilience in the face of high

  8. Cell–cell signaling drives the evolution of complex traits: introduction—lung evo-devo

    PubMed Central

    Torday, John S.; Rehan, V. K.

    2009-01-01

    an evolutionary vertical integration of cell-to-tissue-to-organ-to-physiology of intrinsic cell–cell signaling and extrinsic factors is the reverse of the “top-down” conventional way in which physiologic systems are usually regarded. This novel mechanistic approach, incorporating a “middle-out” cell–cell signaling component, will lead to a readily available algorithm for integrating genes and phenotypes. This symposium surveyed the phylogenetic origins of such vertically integrated mechanisms for the evolution of cell–cell communication as the basis for complex physiologic traits, from sponges to man. PMID:20607136

  9. Offenders with mental health problems and problematic substance use: affective psychopathic personality traits as potential barriers to participation in substance abuse interventions.

    PubMed

    Durbeej, Natalie; Palmstierna, Tom; Berman, Anne H; Kristiansson, Marianne; Gumpert, Clara Hellner

    2014-01-01

    Substance abuse is related to re-offending, and treatment of substance abuse may reduce criminal recidivism. Offender characteristics including problem severity, violence risk and psychopathic personality traits may be positively or negatively associated with participation in substance abuse treatment. We explored the relationships between such characteristics and participation in substance abuse interventions among Swedish offenders with mental health problems and problematic substance use. Our analyses revealed that problem severity regarding drugs, employment, and family/social situations predicted intervention participation, and that affective psychopathic personality traits were negatively associated with such participation. Thus, affective psychopathic personality traits could be considered as potential barriers to participation in substance abuse interventions. Among offenders with mental health problems and problematic substance use, such personality traits should be taken into account in order to optimize treatment participation and treatment outcome. Approaches used in cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT) could be applicable for these patients.

  10. Affective and neuroendocrine stress reactivity to an academic examination: influence of the 5-HTTLPR genotype and trait neuroticism.

    PubMed

    Verschoor, Ellen; Markus, C Rob

    2011-07-01

    The current study examined the singular and interactive effects of the 5-HTTLPR genotype and trait neuroticism on affective and physiological stress responses to an academic examination in healthy undergraduate students. From 771 students, 46 short/short (S/S)-allele carriers and 48 long/long (L/L)-allele carriers with the lowest and the highest neuroticism scores (80 females, 14 males; mean age±SD: 20.3±1.7 years) were selected. Salivary cortisol concentrations, mood and perceived stress were assessed before and after a 2-h written examination and compared with a control day. Negative mood, perceived stress and cortisol significantly increased during the examination compared to the control day. Negative stress effects on mood and perceived stress were significantly larger for S/S-allele carriers compared to L/L-allele carriers, regardless of trait neuroticism. Since vulnerability to real-life stressors is an important risk factor for depression pathogenesis, this may be a mediating factor making S/S-allele carriers more susceptible for depression symptoms.

  11. Tree species identity and functional traits but not species richness affect interrill erosion processes in young subtropical forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seitz, S.; Goebes, P.; Song, Z.; Bruelheide, H.; Härdtle, W.; Kühn, P.; Li, Y.; Scholten, T.

    2015-06-01

    Soil erosion is seriously threatening ecosystem functioning in many parts of the world. In this context, it is assumed that tree species richness and functional diversity of tree communities can play a critical role in improving ecosystem services such as erosion control. An experiment with 170 micro-scale runoff plots was conducted to investigate the influence of tree species richness and identity as well as tree functional traits on interrill erosion in a young forest ecosystem. An interrill erosion rate of 47.5 t ha-1 a-1 was calculated. This study provided evidence that different tree species affect interrill erosion, but higher tree species richness did not mitigate soil losses in young forest stands. Thus, different tree morphologies have to be considered, when assessing erosion under forest. High crown cover and leaf area index reduced soil losses in initial forest ecosystems, whereas rising tree height increased them. Even if a leaf litter cover was not present, remaining soil surface cover by stones and biological soil crusts was the most important driver for soil erosion control. Furthermore, soil organic matter had a decreasing influence on soil loss. Long-term monitoring of soil erosion under closing tree canopies is necessary and a wide range of functional tree traits should be taken into consideration in future research.

  12. Larval nutrition affects life history traits in a capital breeding moth.

    PubMed

    Colasurdo, Nadia; Gélinas, Yves; Despland, Emma

    2009-06-01

    Fitness depends not only on resource uptake but also on the allocation of these resources to various life history functions. This study explores the life-history consequences of larval diet in terms not only of larval performance but also of adult body composition and reproductive traits in the forest tent caterpillar (Malacosoma disstria Hübner). Caterpillars were reared on their preferred tree host, trembling aspen (Populus tremuloides), or on one of three artificial foods: high protein:low carbohydrate, equal protein-to-carbohydrate ratio or low protein:high carbohydrate. Survivorship, larval development rate and adult body size were lowest on the carbohydrate-biased diet and similar on the protein-biased and equal-ratio diets. Fecundity increased with body size but did not otherwise differ between diets. Moths reared on the carbohydrate-biased diet allocated a lower proportion of their mass to the ovaries and more to somatic growth whereas those on equal-ratio and protein-biased diets allocated more to reproductive tissue and less to somatic tissue. These differences in allocation to reproduction arose from differences in the size of eggs, an index of offspring quality. No differences were found in lipid and protein content of female ovaries, accessory glands or somatic tissue, or of the whole body of male moths. The findings show that physiological processes regulate the composition of the different components of the adult body. Diet effects occur as differences in overall body size and in relative allocation to these components. Although lepidopterans can, to a large extent, compensate post-ingestively for nutritionally deficient diets, investment in reproduction vs somatic growth depends on the nutrients available. PMID:19482996

  13. Reproductive traits affect the rescue of valuable and endangered multipurpose tropical trees.

    PubMed

    Sinébou, Viviane; Quinet, Muriel; Ahohuendo, Bonaventure C; Jacquemart, Anne-Laure

    2016-01-01

    Conservation strategies are urgently needed in Tropical areas for widely used tree species. Increasing numbers of species are threatened by overexploitation and their recovery might be poor due to low reproductive success and poor regeneration rates. One of the first steps in developing any conservation policy should be an assessment of the reproductive biology of species that are threatened by overexploitation. This work aimed to study the flowering biology, pollination and breeding system of V. doniana, a multipurpose threatened African tree, as one step in assessing the development of successful conservation strategies. To this end, we studied (1) traits directly involved in pollinator attraction like flowering phenology, flower numbers and morphology, and floral rewards; (2) abundance, diversity and efficiency of flower visitors; (3) breeding system, through controlled hand-pollination experiments involving exclusion of pollinators and pollen from different sources; and (4) optimal conditions for seed germination. The flowering phenology was asynchronous among inflorescences, trees and sites. The flowers produced a large quantity of pollen and nectar with high sugar content. Flowers attracted diverse and abundant visitors, counting both insects and birds, and efficient pollinators included several Hymenoptera species. We detected no spontaneous self-pollination, indicating a total dependence on pollen vectors. Vitex doniana is self-compatible and no inbreeding depression occurred in the first developmental stages. After extraction of the seed from the fruit, seed germination did not require any particular conditions or pre-treatments and the seeds showed high germination rates. These pollination and breeding characteristics as well as germination potential offer the required conditions to develop successful conservation strategies. Protection, cultivation and integration in agroforestry systems are required to improve the regeneration of the tree. PMID:27354660

  14. A Narrow Quantitative Trait Locus in C. elegans Coordinately Affects Longevity, Thermotolerance, and Resistance to Paraquat

    PubMed Central

    Vertino, Anthony; Ayyadevara, Srinivas; Thaden, John J.; Reis, Robert J. Shmookler

    2011-01-01

    By linkage mapping of quantitative trait loci, we previously identified at least 11 natural genetic variants that significantly modulate Caenorhabditis elegans life-span (LS), many of which would have eluded discovery by knock-down or mutation screens. A region on chromosome IV between markers stP13 and stP35 had striking effects on longevity in three inter-strain crosses (each P < 10−9). In order to define the limits of that interval, we have now constructed two independent lines by marker-based selection during 20 backcross generations, isolating the stP13–stP35 interval from strain Bergerac-BO in a CL2a background. These congenic lines differed significantly from CL2a in LS, assayed in two environments (each P < 0.001). We then screened for exchange of flanking markers to isolate recombinants that partition this region, because fine-mapping the boundaries for overlapping heteroallelic spans can greatly narrow the implicated interval. Recombinants carrying the CL2a allele at stP35 were consistently long-lived compared to those retaining the Bergerac-BO allele (P < 0.001), and more resistant to temperature elevation and paraquat (each ∼1.7-fold, P < 0.0001), but gained little protection from ultraviolet or peroxide stresses. Two rounds of recombinant screening, followed by fine-mapping of break-points and survival testing, narrowed the interval to 0.18 Mb (13.35–13.53 Mb) containing 26 putative genes and six small-nuclear RNAs – a manageable number of targets for functional assessment. PMID:22303358

  15. Larval nutrition affects life history traits in a capital breeding moth.

    PubMed

    Colasurdo, Nadia; Gélinas, Yves; Despland, Emma

    2009-06-01

    Fitness depends not only on resource uptake but also on the allocation of these resources to various life history functions. This study explores the life-history consequences of larval diet in terms not only of larval performance but also of adult body composition and reproductive traits in the forest tent caterpillar (Malacosoma disstria Hübner). Caterpillars were reared on their preferred tree host, trembling aspen (Populus tremuloides), or on one of three artificial foods: high protein:low carbohydrate, equal protein-to-carbohydrate ratio or low protein:high carbohydrate. Survivorship, larval development rate and adult body size were lowest on the carbohydrate-biased diet and similar on the protein-biased and equal-ratio diets. Fecundity increased with body size but did not otherwise differ between diets. Moths reared on the carbohydrate-biased diet allocated a lower proportion of their mass to the ovaries and more to somatic growth whereas those on equal-ratio and protein-biased diets allocated more to reproductive tissue and less to somatic tissue. These differences in allocation to reproduction arose from differences in the size of eggs, an index of offspring quality. No differences were found in lipid and protein content of female ovaries, accessory glands or somatic tissue, or of the whole body of male moths. The findings show that physiological processes regulate the composition of the different components of the adult body. Diet effects occur as differences in overall body size and in relative allocation to these components. Although lepidopterans can, to a large extent, compensate post-ingestively for nutritionally deficient diets, investment in reproduction vs somatic growth depends on the nutrients available.

  16. Reproductive traits affect the rescue of valuable and endangered multipurpose tropical trees

    PubMed Central

    Sinébou, Viviane; Quinet, Muriel; Ahohuendo, Bonaventure C.; Jacquemart, Anne-Laure

    2016-01-01

    Conservation strategies are urgently needed in Tropical areas for widely used tree species. Increasing numbers of species are threatened by overexploitation and their recovery might be poor due to low reproductive success and poor regeneration rates. One of the first steps in developing any conservation policy should be an assessment of the reproductive biology of species that are threatened by overexploitation. This work aimed to study the flowering biology, pollination and breeding system of V. doniana, a multipurpose threatened African tree, as one step in assessing the development of successful conservation strategies. To this end, we studied (1) traits directly involved in pollinator attraction like flowering phenology, flower numbers and morphology, and floral rewards; (2) abundance, diversity and efficiency of flower visitors; (3) breeding system, through controlled hand-pollination experiments involving exclusion of pollinators and pollen from different sources; and (4) optimal conditions for seed germination. The flowering phenology was asynchronous among inflorescences, trees and sites. The flowers produced a large quantity of pollen and nectar with high sugar content. Flowers attracted diverse and abundant visitors, counting both insects and birds, and efficient pollinators included several Hymenoptera species. We detected no spontaneous self-pollination, indicating a total dependence on pollen vectors. Vitex doniana is self-compatible and no inbreeding depression occurred in the first developmental stages. After extraction of the seed from the fruit, seed germination did not require any particular conditions or pre-treatments and the seeds showed high germination rates. These pollination and breeding characteristics as well as germination potential offer the required conditions to develop successful conservation strategies. Protection, cultivation and integration in agroforestry systems are required to improve the regeneration of the tree. PMID:27354660

  17. Identification of candidate genes for dissecting complex branch number trait in chickpea.

    PubMed

    Bajaj, Deepak; Upadhyaya, Hari D; Das, Shouvik; Kumar, Vinod; Gowda, C L L; Sharma, Shivali; Tyagi, Akhilesh K; Parida, Swarup K

    2016-04-01

    The present study exploited integrated genomics-assisted breeding strategy for genetic dissection of complex branch number quantitative trait in chickpea. Candidate gene-based association analysis in a branch number association panel was performed by utilizing the genotyping data of 401 SNP allelic variants mined from 27 known cloned branch number gene orthologs of chickpea. The genome-wide association study (GWAS) integrating both genome-wide GBS- (4556 SNPs) and candidate gene-based genotyping information of 4957 SNPs in a structured population of 60 sequenced desi and kabuli accessions (with 350-400 kb LD decay), detected 11 significant genomic loci (genes) associated (41% combined PVE) with branch number in chickpea. Of these, seven branch number-associated genes were further validated successfully in two inter (ICC 4958 × ICC 17160)- and intra (ICC 12299 × ICC 8261)-specific mapping populations. The axillary meristem and shoot apical meristem-specific expression, including differential up- and down-regulation (4-5 fold) of the validated seven branch number-associated genes especially in high branch number as compared to the low branch number-containing parental accessions and homozygous individuals of two aforesaid mapping populations was apparent. Collectively, this combinatorial genomic approach delineated diverse naturally occurring novel functional SNP allelic variants in seven potential known/candidate genes [PIN1 (PIN-FORMED protein 1), TB1 (teosinte branched 1), BA1/LAX1 (BARREN STALK1/LIKE AUXIN1), GRAS8 (gibberellic acid insensitive/GAI, Repressor of ga13/RGA and Scarecrow8/SCR8), ERF (ethylene-responsive element-binding factor), MAX2 (more axillary growth 2) and lipase] governing chickpea branch number. The useful information generated from this study have potential to expedite marker-assisted genetic enhancement by developing high-yielding cultivars with more number of productive (pods and seeds) branches in chickpea. PMID:26940492

  18. Cognitive and affective empathy in children with conduct problems: additive and interactive effects of callous-unemotional traits and autism spectrum disorders symptoms.

    PubMed

    Pasalich, Dave S; Dadds, Mark R; Hawes, David J

    2014-11-30

    Callous-unemotional (CU) traits and autism spectrum disorders (ASD) symptoms are characterized by problems in empathy; however, these behavioral features are rarely examined together in children with conduct problems. This study investigated additive and interactive effects of CU traits and ASD symptoms in relation to cognitive and affective empathy in a non-ASD clinic-referred sample. Participants were 134 children aged 3 to 9 years (M=5.60; 79% boys) with oppositional defiant/conduct disorder, and their parents. Clinicians, teachers, and parents reported on dimensions of child behavior, and parental reports of family dysfunction and direct observations of parental warmth/responsiveness assessed quality of family relationships. Results from multiple regression analysis showed that, over and above the effects of child conduct problem severity and quality of family relationships, both ASD symptoms and CU traits were uniquely associated with deficits in cognitive empathy. Moreover, CU traits demonstrated an independent association with affective empathy, and this relationship was moderated by ASD symptoms. That is, there was a stronger negative association between CU traits and affective empathy at higher versus lower levels of ASD symptoms. These findings suggest including both CU traits and ASD-related social impairments in models delineating the atypical development of empathy in children with conduct problems. PMID:25015711

  19. Cognitive and affective empathy in children with conduct problems: additive and interactive effects of callous-unemotional traits and autism spectrum disorders symptoms.

    PubMed

    Pasalich, Dave S; Dadds, Mark R; Hawes, David J

    2014-11-30

    Callous-unemotional (CU) traits and autism spectrum disorders (ASD) symptoms are characterized by problems in empathy; however, these behavioral features are rarely examined together in children with conduct problems. This study investigated additive and interactive effects of CU traits and ASD symptoms in relation to cognitive and affective empathy in a non-ASD clinic-referred sample. Participants were 134 children aged 3 to 9 years (M=5.60; 79% boys) with oppositional defiant/conduct disorder, and their parents. Clinicians, teachers, and parents reported on dimensions of child behavior, and parental reports of family dysfunction and direct observations of parental warmth/responsiveness assessed quality of family relationships. Results from multiple regression analysis showed that, over and above the effects of child conduct problem severity and quality of family relationships, both ASD symptoms and CU traits were uniquely associated with deficits in cognitive empathy. Moreover, CU traits demonstrated an independent association with affective empathy, and this relationship was moderated by ASD symptoms. That is, there was a stronger negative association between CU traits and affective empathy at higher versus lower levels of ASD symptoms. These findings suggest including both CU traits and ASD-related social impairments in models delineating the atypical development of empathy in children with conduct problems.

  20. Utilization of information from gene networks towards a better understanding of functional similarities between complex traits: a dairy cattle model.

    PubMed

    Frąszczak, Magdalena; Suchocki, Tomasz; Szyda, Joanna

    2016-02-01

    Our study focused on quantifying functional similarities between complex traits recorded in dairy cattle: milk yield, fat yield, protein yield, somatic cell score and stature. Similarities were calculated based on gene sets forming gene networks and on gene ontology term sets underlying genes estimated as significant for the analysed traits. Gene networks were obtained by the Bisogenet and Gene Set Linkage Analysis (GSLA) software. The highest similarity was observed between milk yield and fat yield. A very low degree of similarity was attributed to protein yield and stature when using gene sets as a similarity criterion, as well as to protein yield and fat yield when using sets of gene ontology terms. Pearson correlation coefficients between gene effect estimates, representing additive polygenic similarities, were highest for protein yield and milk yield, and the lowest in case of protein yield and somatic cell score. Using the 50 K Illumina SNP chip from the national genomic selection data set only the most significant gene-trait associations can be retrieved, while enhancing it by the functional information contained in interaction data stored in public data bases and by metabolic pathways information facilitates a better characterization of the functional background of the traits and furthermore - trait comparison. The most interesting result of our study was that the functional similarity observed between protein yield and milk-/fat yields contradicted moderate genetic correlations estimated earlier for the same population based on a multivariate mixed model. The discrepancy indicates that an infinitesimal model assumed in that study reflects an averaged correlation due to polygenes, but fails to reveal the functional background underlying the traits, which is due to the cumulative composition of many genes involved in metabolic pathways, which appears to differ between protein-fat yield and protein-milk yield pairs.

  1. Improving the Accuracy of Whole Genome Prediction for Complex Traits Using the Results of Genome Wide Association Studies

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Zhe; Ober, Ulrike; Erbe, Malena; Zhang, Hao; Gao, Ning; He, Jinlong; Li, Jiaqi; Simianer, Henner

    2014-01-01

    Utilizing the whole genomic variation of complex traits to predict the yet-to-be observed phenotypes or unobserved genetic values via whole genome prediction (WGP) and to infer the underlying genetic architecture via genome wide association study (GWAS) is an interesting and fast developing area in the context of human disease studies as well as in animal and plant breeding. Though thousands of significant loci for several species were detected via GWAS in the past decade, they were not used directly to improve WGP due to lack of proper models. Here, we propose a generalized way of building trait-specific genomic relationship matrices which can exploit GWAS results in WGP via a best linear unbiased prediction (BLUP) model for which we suggest the name BLUP|GA. Results from two illustrative examples show that using already existing GWAS results from public databases in BLUP|GA improved the accuracy of WGP for two out of the three model traits in a dairy cattle data set, and for nine out of the 11 traits in a rice diversity data set, compared to the reference methods GBLUP and BayesB. While BLUP|GA outperforms BayesB, its required computing time is comparable to GBLUP. Further simulation results suggest that accounting for publicly available GWAS results is potentially more useful for WGP utilizing smaller data sets and/or traits of low heritability, depending on the genetic architecture of the trait under consideration. To our knowledge, this is the first study incorporating public GWAS results formally into the standard GBLUP model and we think that the BLUP|GA approach deserves further investigations in animal breeding, plant breeding as well as human genetics. PMID:24663104

  2. Improving the accuracy of whole genome prediction for complex traits using the results of genome wide association studies.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Zhe; Ober, Ulrike; Erbe, Malena; Zhang, Hao; Gao, Ning; He, Jinlong; Li, Jiaqi; Simianer, Henner

    2014-01-01

    Utilizing the whole genomic variation of complex traits to predict the yet-to-be observed phenotypes or unobserved genetic values via whole genome prediction (WGP) and to infer the underlying genetic architecture via genome wide association study (GWAS) is an interesting and fast developing area in the context of human disease studies as well as in animal and plant breeding. Though thousands of significant loci for several species were detected via GWAS in the past decade, they were not used directly to improve WGP due to lack of proper models. Here, we propose a generalized way of building trait-specific genomic relationship matrices which can exploit GWAS results in WGP via a best linear unbiased prediction (BLUP) model for which we suggest the name BLUP|GA. Results from two illustrative examples show that using already existing GWAS results from public databases in BLUP|GA improved the accuracy of WGP for two out of the three model traits in a dairy cattle data set, and for nine out of the 11 traits in a rice diversity data set, compared to the reference methods GBLUP and BayesB. While BLUP|GA outperforms BayesB, its required computing time is comparable to GBLUP. Further simulation results suggest that accounting for publicly available GWAS results is potentially more useful for WGP utilizing smaller data sets and/or traits of low heritability, depending on the genetic architecture of the trait under consideration. To our knowledge, this is the first study incorporating public GWAS results formally into the standard GBLUP model and we think that the BLUP|GA approach deserves further investigations in animal breeding, plant breeding as well as human genetics.

  3. Genetic basis for reproductive diapause is correlated with life history traits within the Culex pipiens complex.

    PubMed

    Mori, A; Romero-Severson, J; Severson, D W

    2007-10-01

    The evolution of late season reproductive arrest (diapause) among female Culex pipiens mosquitoes allows them to overwinter in temperate climates, while females of the sibling species Culex quinquefasciatus do not exhibit the diapause phenotype. We present results for quantitative trait loci (QTL) analyses of two independent segregating populations derived from crosses between C. pipiens and C. quinquefasciatus. QTL for diapause and three life history traits were identified and compared for genome positions and gene effects. Using a combination of composite interval mapping, single-marker analysis and all possible subsets regression, we identified multiple QTL for each trait, totalling 14 and 17 QTL for each population, respectively. Individual QTL across traits often mapped to similar genome locations, suggesting these traits may be controlled in part by genes with pleiotropic effects or multiple tightly linked genes. The majority of QTL were intermediate in magnitude in that they explained 10-25% of the phenotypic variation. The majority of QTL showed overdominance effects. We suggest that this could impact natural populations, as increased heterosis across hybrid zones may allow populations to adapt to environmental conditions via stabilizing selection, and yet maintain species identity outside these regions because of strong morphological integration, wherein related traits evolve as an integrated unit.

  4. Composite Selection Signals for Complex Traits Exemplified Through Bovine Stature Using Multibreed Cohorts of European and African Bos taurus.

    PubMed

    Randhawa, Imtiaz A S; Khatkar, Mehar S; Thomson, Peter C; Raadsma, Herman W

    2015-07-01

    Understanding the evolution and molecular architecture of complex traits is important in domestic animals. Due to phenotypic selection, genomic regions develop unique patterns of genetic diversity called signatures of selection, which are challenging to detect, especially for complex polygenic traits. In this study, we applied the composite selection signals (CSS) method to investigate evidence of positive selection in a complex polygenic trait by examining stature in phenotypically diverse cattle comprising 47 European and 8 African Bos taurus breeds, utilizing a panel of 38,033 SNPs genotyped on 1106 animals. CSS were computed for phenotypic contrasts between multibreed cohorts of cattle by classifying the breeds according to their documented wither height to detect the candidate regions under selection. Using the CSS method, clusters of signatures of selection were detected at 26 regions (9 in European and 17 in African cohorts) on 13 bovine autosomes. Using comparative mapping information on human height, 30 candidate genes mapped at 12 selection regions (on 8 autosomes) could be linked to bovine stature diversity. Of these 12 candidate gene regions, three contained known genes (i.e., NCAPG-LCORL, FBP2-PTCH1, and PLAG1-CHCHD7) related to bovine stature, and nine were not previously described in cattle (five in European and four in African cohorts). Overall, this study demonstrates the utility of CSS coupled with strategies of combining multibreed datasets in the identification and discovery of genomic regions underlying complex traits. Characterization of multiple signatures of selection and their underlying candidate genes will elucidate the polygenic nature of stature across cattle breeds. PMID:25931611

  5. Composite Selection Signals for Complex Traits Exemplified Through Bovine Stature Using Multibreed Cohorts of European and African Bos taurus

    PubMed Central

    Randhawa, Imtiaz A. S.; Khatkar, Mehar S.; Thomson, Peter C.; Raadsma, Herman W.

    2015-01-01

    Understanding the evolution and molecular architecture of complex traits is important in domestic animals. Due to phenotypic selection, genomic regions develop unique patterns of genetic diversity called signatures of selection, which are challenging to detect, especially for complex polygenic traits. In this study, we applied the composite selection signals (CSS) method to investigate evidence of positive selection in a complex polygenic trait by examining stature in phenotypically diverse cattle comprising 47 European and 8 African Bos taurus breeds, utilizing a panel of 38,033 SNPs genotyped on 1106 animals. CSS were computed for phenotypic contrasts between multibreed cohorts of cattle by classifying the breeds according to their documented wither height to detect the candidate regions under selection. Using the CSS method, clusters of signatures of selection were detected at 26 regions (9 in European and 17 in African cohorts) on 13 bovine autosomes. Using comparative mapping information on human height, 30 candidate genes mapped at 12 selection regions (on 8 autosomes) could be linked to bovine stature diversity. Of these 12 candidate gene regions, three contained known genes (i.e., NCAPG-LCORL, FBP2-PTCH1, and PLAG1-CHCHD7) related to bovine stature, and nine were not previously described in cattle (five in European and four in African cohorts). Overall, this study demonstrates the utility of CSS coupled with strategies of combining multibreed datasets in the identification and discovery of genomic regions underlying complex traits. Characterization of multiple signatures of selection and their underlying candidate genes will elucidate the polygenic nature of stature across cattle breeds. PMID:25931611

  6. Antagonistic coevolution between quantitative and Mendelian traits.

    PubMed

    Yamamichi, Masato; Ellner, Stephen P

    2016-03-30

    Coevolution is relentlessly creating and maintaining biodiversity and therefore has been a central topic in evolutionary biology. Previous theoretical studies have mostly considered coevolution between genetically symmetric traits (i.e. coevolution between two continuous quantitative traits or two discrete Mendelian traits). However, recent empirical evidence indicates that coevolution can occur between genetically asymmetric traits (e.g. between quantitative and Mendelian traits). We examine consequences of antagonistic coevolution mediated by a quantitative predator trait and a Mendelian prey trait, such that predation is more intense with decreased phenotypic distance between their traits (phenotype matching). This antagonistic coevolution produces a complex pattern of bifurcations with bistability (initial state dependence) in a two-dimensional model for trait coevolution. Furthermore, with eco-evolutionary dynamics (so that the trait evolution affects predator-prey population dynamics), we find that coevolution can cause rich dynamics including anti-phase cycles, in-phase cycles, chaotic dynamics and deterministic predator extinction. Predator extinction is more likely to occur when the prey trait exhibits complete dominance rather than semidominance and when the predator trait evolves very rapidly. Our study illustrates how recognizing the genetic architectures of interacting ecological traits can be essential for understanding the population and evolutionary dynamics of coevolving species. PMID:27009218

  7. Genome-wide association scan and phased haplotype construction for quantitative trait loci affecting boar taint in three pig breeds

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Boar taint is the undesirable smell and taste of pork meat derived from some entire male pigs. The main causes of boar taint are the two compounds androstenone and skatole (3-methyl-indole). The steroid androstenone is a sex pheromone produced in the testis of the boars. Skatole is produced from tryptophan by bacteria in the intestine of the pigs. In many countries pigs are castrated as piglets to avoid boar taint, however, this is undesirable for animal welfare reasons. Genetic variations affecting the level of boar taint have previously been demonstrated in many breeds. In the study presented in this paper, markers and haplotypes, which can be applied to DNA-based selection schemes in order to reduce or eliminate the boar taint problem, are identified. Results Approximately 30,000 SNPs segregating in 923 boars from three Danish breeds; Duroc, Landrace, and Yorkshire, were used to conduct genome wide association studies of boar taint compounds. At 46 suggestive quantitative trait loci (QTL), 25 haplotypes and three single markers with effects were identified. Furthermore, 40% of the haplotypes mapped to previously identified regions. Haplotypes were also analysed for effects of slaughter weight and meat content. The most promising haplotype was identified on Sus scrofa chromosome 1. The gain in fixed effect of having this haplotype on level of androstenone in Landrace was identified to be high (1.279 μg/g). In addition, this haplotype explained 16.8% of the phenotypic variation within the trait. The haplotype was identified around the gene CYB5A which is known to have an indirect impact on the amount of androstenone. In addition to CYB5A, the genes SRD5A2, LOC100518755, and CYP21A2 are candidate genes for other haplotypes affecting androstenone, whereas, candidate genes for the indolic compounds were identified to be SULT1A1 and CYP2E1. Conclusions Despite the small sample size, a total of 25 haplotypes and three single markers were identified

  8. Genome-wide association study SNPs in the human genome diversity project populations: does selection affect unlinked SNPs with shared trait associations?

    PubMed

    Casto, Amanda M; Feldman, Marcus W

    2011-01-06

    Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have identified more than 2,000 trait-SNP associations, and the number continues to increase. GWAS have focused on traits with potential consequences for human fitness, including many immunological, metabolic, cardiovascular, and behavioral phenotypes. Given the polygenic nature of complex traits, selection may exert its influence on them by altering allele frequencies at many associated loci, a possibility which has yet to be explored empirically. Here we use 38 different measures of allele frequency variation and 8 iHS scores to characterize over 1,300 GWAS SNPs in 53 globally distributed human populations. We apply these same techniques to evaluate SNPs grouped by trait association. We find that groups of SNPs associated with pigmentation, blood pressure, infectious disease, and autoimmune disease traits exhibit unusual allele frequency patterns and elevated iHS scores in certain geographical locations. We also find that GWAS SNPs have generally elevated scores for measures of allele frequency variation and for iHS in Eurasia and East Asia. Overall, we believe that our results provide evidence for selection on several complex traits that has caused changes in allele frequencies and/or elevated iHS scores at a number of associated loci. Since GWAS SNPs collectively exhibit elevated allele frequency measures and iHS scores, selection on complex traits may be quite widespread. Our findings are most consistent with this selection being either positive or negative, although the relative contributions of the two are difficult to discern. Our results also suggest that trait-SNP associations identified in Eurasian samples may not be present in Africa, Oceania, and the Americas, possibly due to differences in linkage disequilibrium patterns. This observation suggests that non-Eurasian and non-East Asian sample populations should be included in future GWAS.

  9. Communal nesting exerts epigenetic influences on affective and social behaviors in rats selectively bred for an infantile trait.

    PubMed

    Martinez, Ashley Rae; Brunelli, Susan A; Zimmerberg, Betty

    2015-02-01

    Communal nesting (CN) is a mouse model of early social enrichment during pregnancy and lactation. In this study, a rat model of CN was developed to determine if CN exerts an epigenetic effect in rats selectively bred for an infantile affective trait (high and low rates of ultrasonic distress calls). High and Low offspring from CN groups were compared to standard reared (SN) offspring on five measures of social and affective behavior at three critical ages. A differential effect of the CN paradigm on High and Low lines was seen in measures of anxiety and arousal, but not in measures of depression or social behavior. Neonatal CN subjects emitted fewer distress calls than SN subjects when separated from their dams, and the High line subjects were more affected by the CN procedure. As juveniles, CN subjects showed increased social behaviors in tests of juvenile parenting and play compared to SN subjects. In adulthood, CN differentially increased the activity of Low line subjects. All CN subjects displayed less anxiety behavior in an open field compared to SN subjects; High line subjects were more anxious than Lows. CN reduced immobility and increased attempts to escape on the Porsolt forced swim task relative to SN subjects. These results extend the usefulness of this early enrichment paradigm from mice to rats, and found some rodent species differences in outcomes dependent on the behavioral test. They also emphasize the importance of social contact during pregnancy and lactation on offspring's optimal development across behaviors and ages. PMID:25446220

  10. Milk production traits of beef cows as affected by horn fly count and sire breed type.

    PubMed

    Mays, A R; Brown, M A; von Tunglen, D L; Rosenkrans, C F

    2014-03-01

    Horn fly infestations negatively impact economic traits of beef cattle. Our objective was to determine the impact of horn flies on beef cattle milk yield and quality. Cows (n = 53) were derived from Brangus dams and sired by Bonsmara (n = 7), Brangus (n = 13), Charolais (n = 8), Gelbvieh (n = 5), Hereford (n = 12), and Romosinuano (n = 8) bulls. Horn fly counts and estimates of milk yield and quality were recorded monthly from May through October on individual cows. Data for milk yield and quality and horn fly count were analyzed by mixed model least squares using a linear model including sire breed, cow in sire breed, month, and month × sire breed. Effects of horn fly count on milk yield and quality were estimated by analysis of covariance using log horn fly count and log horn fly count × sire breed. Horn fly counts varied by month (P < 0.0001), with lowest population recorded in May (99 flies) and peaked in August (520 flies). Bonsmara and Gelbvieh sired cows had greater (P < 0.05) milk yield compared to Hereford sired cows (8.75 and 8.62 vs. 6.02 kg/d, respectively). Milk yield from Charolais, Romosinuano, and Brangus sired cows was intermediate (7.28, 7.00, and 7.06 kg/d, respectively). Regression of milk yield on fly count differed (P < 0.05) among sire breeds. Milk yield was reduced (P < 0.05) by 0.99 and 0.64 kg/d per unit increase in log horn fly count in Gelbvieh and Bonsmara sired cows. Regression coefficient for milk yield on log horn fly count was reduced (P < 0.01) in Gelbvieh sired cows when compared with Brangus, Charolais, Hereford, and Romosinuano sired cows, and coefficients for Bonsmara sired cows were reduced (P < 0.05) in comparison to Brangus sired cows. Increases in log fly count were associated with decreases (P < 0.05) in milk fat, solids-not-fat, and milk urea nitrogen. Milk yield was reduced (P < 0.05) by increased fly numbers depending on month of lactation and interaction with log horn fly count. In May, June, and July milk yield was

  11. Milk production traits of beef cows as affected by horn fly count and sire breed type.

    PubMed

    Mays, A R; Brown, M A; von Tunglen, D L; Rosenkrans, C F

    2014-03-01

    Horn fly infestations negatively impact economic traits of beef cattle. Our objective was to determine the impact of horn flies on beef cattle milk yield and quality. Cows (n = 53) were derived from Brangus dams and sired by Bonsmara (n = 7), Brangus (n = 13), Charolais (n = 8), Gelbvieh (n = 5), Hereford (n = 12), and Romosinuano (n = 8) bulls. Horn fly counts and estimates of milk yield and quality were recorded monthly from May through October on individual cows. Data for milk yield and quality and horn fly count were analyzed by mixed model least squares using a linear model including sire breed, cow in sire breed, month, and month × sire breed. Effects of horn fly count on milk yield and quality were estimated by analysis of covariance using log horn fly count and log horn fly count × sire breed. Horn fly counts varied by month (P < 0.0001), with lowest population recorded in May (99 flies) and peaked in August (520 flies). Bonsmara and Gelbvieh sired cows had greater (P < 0.05) milk yield compared to Hereford sired cows (8.75 and 8.62 vs. 6.02 kg/d, respectively). Milk yield from Charolais, Romosinuano, and Brangus sired cows was intermediate (7.28, 7.00, and 7.06 kg/d, respectively). Regression of milk yield on fly count differed (P < 0.05) among sire breeds. Milk yield was reduced (P < 0.05) by 0.99 and 0.64 kg/d per unit increase in log horn fly count in Gelbvieh and Bonsmara sired cows. Regression coefficient for milk yield on log horn fly count was reduced (P < 0.01) in Gelbvieh sired cows when compared with Brangus, Charolais, Hereford, and Romosinuano sired cows, and coefficients for Bonsmara sired cows were reduced (P < 0.05) in comparison to Brangus sired cows. Increases in log fly count were associated with decreases (P < 0.05) in milk fat, solids-not-fat, and milk urea nitrogen. Milk yield was reduced (P < 0.05) by increased fly numbers depending on month of lactation and interaction with log horn fly count. In May, June, and July milk yield was

  12. Resistance to mycoplasmal lung disease in mice is a complex genetic trait.

    PubMed Central

    Cartner, S C; Simecka, J W; Briles, D E; Cassell, G H; Lindsey, J R

    1996-01-01

    Mouse strains differ markedly in resistance to Mycoplasma pulmonis infection, and investigation of these differences holds much promise for understanding the mechanisms of antimycoplasmal host defenses. To determine the potential genetic diversity of resistance to disease in murine respiratory mycoplasmosis (MRM) and to select disease-resistant and nonresistant mouse strains for further genetic analysis, we screened 17 inbred mouse strains of various Bcg and H-2 genotypes for resistance to M. pulmonis. Mice were inoculated intranasally with 10(4) CFU of M. pulmonis UAB CT and evaluated at 21 days postinfection for severities of the four histologic lung lesions characteristic of MRM: alveolar exudate, airway exudate, airway epithelial hyperplasia, and lymphoid infiltrate. On the basis of these assessments of MRM severity, one group of mouse strains was found to be extremely resistant to disease (C57BR/cdJ, C57BL/6NCr, C57BL/10ScNCr, and C57BL/6J). The remaining strains of mice (C57L/J, SJL/NCr, BALB/cAnNCr, A/JCr, C3H/HeJ, SWR/J, AKR/NCr, CBA/NCr, C58/J, DBA/2NCr, C3H/HeNCr, C3HeB/FeJ, and C3H/HeJCr) developed disease of widely varying severities. Furthermore, strains in the group with more disease varied in pattern of lesion severity. While the severities of all four lesions were correlated in most mouse strains, this was not always true. DBA/2NCr mice had one of the highest scores for alveolar exudate, only a moderate score for airway exudate, and significantly lower scores for both airway epithelial hyperplasia and lymphoid infiltrate than all other strains susceptible to lung disease. DBA/2NCr mice had one of the highest mortality rates. We concluded that resistance to MRM is a complex trait. The observed differences in lung disease severity could not be explained by known differences at the Bcg or H-2 locus in the strains of mice we studied. PMID:8945584

  13. Longer resistance of some DNA traits from BT176 maize to gastric juice from gastrointestinal affected patients.

    PubMed

    Ferrini, A M; Mannoni, V; Pontieri, E; Pourshaban, M

    2007-01-01

    The presence of antibiotic resistance marker genes in genetically engineered plants is one of the most controversial issues related to Genetically Modified Organism (GMO)-containing food, raising concern about the possibility that these markers could increase the pool of antibiotic resistance genes. This study investigates the in vitro survival of genes bla and cryIA(b) of maize Bt176 in human gastric juice samples. Five samples of gastric juice were collected from patients affected by gastro-esophageal reflux or celiac disease and three additional samples were obtained by pH modification with NaHCO3. DNA was extracted from maize Bt176 and incubated with samples of gastric juices at different times. The survival of the target traits (bla gene, whole 1914 bp gene cry1A(b), and its 211 bp fragment) was determined using PCR. The stability of the target genes was an inverse function of their lengths in all the samples. Survival in samples from untreated subjects was below the normal physiological time of gastric digestion. On the contrary, survival time in samples from patients under anti-acid drug treatment or in samples whose pH was modified, resulted strongly increased. Our data indicate the possibility that in particular cases the survival time could be so delayed that, as a consequence, some traits of DNA could reach the intestine. In general, this aspect must be considered for vulnerable consumers (people suffering from gastrointestinal diseases related to altered digestive functionality, physiological problems or drug side-effects) in the risk analysis usually referred to healthy subjects. PMID:17346434

  14. Longer resistance of some DNA traits from BT176 maize to gastric juice from gastrointestinal affected patients.

    PubMed

    Ferrini, A M; Mannoni, V; Pontieri, E; Pourshaban, M

    2007-01-01

    The presence of antibiotic resistance marker genes in genetically engineered plants is one of the most controversial issues related to Genetically Modified Organism (GMO)-containing food, raising concern about the possibility that these markers could increase the pool of antibiotic resistance genes. This study investigates the in vitro survival of genes bla and cryIA(b) of maize Bt176 in human gastric juice samples. Five samples of gastric juice were collected from patients affected by gastro-esophageal reflux or celiac disease and three additional samples were obtained by pH modification with NaHCO3. DNA was extracted from maize Bt176 and incubated with samples of gastric juices at different times. The survival of the target traits (bla gene, whole 1914 bp gene cry1A(b), and its 211 bp fragment) was determined using PCR. The stability of the target genes was an inverse function of their lengths in all the samples. Survival in samples from untreated subjects was below the normal physiological time of gastric digestion. On the contrary, survival time in samples from patients under anti-acid drug treatment or in samples whose pH was modified, resulted strongly increased. Our data indicate the possibility that in particular cases the survival time could be so delayed that, as a consequence, some traits of DNA could reach the intestine. In general, this aspect must be considered for vulnerable consumers (people suffering from gastrointestinal diseases related to altered digestive functionality, physiological problems or drug side-effects) in the risk analysis usually referred to healthy subjects.

  15. A genome scan for quantitative trait loci affecting the Salmonella carrier-state in the chicken

    PubMed Central

    Tilquin, Pierre; Barrow, Paul A; Marly, José; Pitel, Frédérique; Plisson-Petit, Florence; Velge, Philippe; Vignal, Alain; Baret, Philippe V; Bumstead, Nat; Beaumont, Catherine

    2005-01-01

    Selection for increased resistance to Salmonella colonisation and excretion could reduce the risk of foodborne Salmonella infection. In order to identify potential loci affecting resistance, differences in resistance were identified between the N and 61 inbred lines and two QTL research performed. In an F2 cross, the animals were inoculated at one week of age with Salmonella enteritidis and cloacal swabs were carried out 4 and 5 wk post inoculation (thereafter called CSW4F2 and CSW4F2) and caecal contamination (CAECF2) was assessed 1 week later. The animals from the (N × 61) × N backcross were inoculated at six weeks of age with Salmonella typhimurium and cloacal swabs were studied from wk 1 to 4 (thereafter called CSW1BC to CSW4BC). A total of 33 F2 and 46 backcross progeny were selectively genotyped for 103 and 135 microsatellite markers respectively. The analysis used least-squares-based and non-parametric interval mapping. Two genome-wise significant QTL were observed on Chromosome 1 for CSW2BC and on Chromosome 2 for CSW4F2, and four suggestive QTL for CSW5F2 on Chromosome 2, for CSW5F2 and CSW2BC on chromosome 5 and for CAECF2 on chromosome 16. These results suggest new regions of interest and the putative role of SAL1. PMID:16093014

  16. Proteomic and metabolomic profiling of a trait anxiety mouse model implicate affected pathways.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yaoyang; Filiou, Michaela D; Reckow, Stefan; Gormanns, Philipp; Maccarrone, Giuseppina; Kessler, Melanie S; Frank, Elisabeth; Hambsch, Boris; Holsboer, Florian; Landgraf, Rainer; Turck, Christoph W

    2011-12-01

    Depression and anxiety disorders affect a great number of people worldwide. Whereas singular factors have been associated with the pathogenesis of psychiatric disorders, growing evidence emphasizes the significance of dysfunctional neural circuits and signaling pathways. Hence, a systems biology approach is required to get a better understanding of psychiatric phenotypes such as depression and anxiety. Furthermore, the availability of biomarkers for these disorders is critical for improved diagnosis and monitoring treatment response. In the present study, a mouse model presenting with robust high versus low anxiety phenotypes was subjected to thorough molecular biomarker and pathway discovery analyses. Reference animals were metabolically labeled with the stable (15)N isotope allowing an accurate comparison of protein expression levels between the high anxiety-related behavior versus low anxiety-related behavior mouse lines using quantitative mass spectrometry. Plasma metabolomic analyses identified a number of small molecule biomarkers characteristic for the anxiety phenotype with particular focus on myo-inositol and glutamate as well as the intermediates involved in the tricarboxylic acid cycle. In silico analyses suggested pathways and subnetworks as relevant for the anxiety phenotype. Our data demonstrate that the high anxiety-related behavior and low anxiety-related behavior mouse model is a valuable tool for anxiety disorder drug discovery efforts. PMID:21862759

  17. Unraveling the complex trait of harvest index with association mapping in rice (Oryza sativa L.)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Harvest index is a measure of success in partitioning assimilated photosynthate. An improvement of harvest index means an increase of economic portion of the plants. Our objective was to identify the markers associated with harvest index and its correlated traits using 203 O. sativa accessions. The ...

  18. Novel genomic approaches unravel genetic architecture of complex traits in apple

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Understanding the genetic architecture of quantitative traits is important for developing genome-based crop improvement methods. Genome-wide association study (GWAS) is a powerful technique for mining novel functional variants. Using a family-based design involving 1,200 apple (Malus × domestica Borkh.) seedlings genotyped for an 8K SNP array, we report the first systematic evaluation of the relative contributions of different genomic regions to various traits related to eating quality and susceptibility to some physiological disorders. Single-SNP analyses models that accounted for population structure, or not, were compared with models fitting all markers simultaneously. The patterns of linkage disequilibrium (LD) were also investigated. Results A high degree of LD even at longer distances between markers was observed, and the patterns of LD decay were similar across successive generations. Genomic regions were identified, some of which coincided with known candidate genes, with significant effects on various traits. Phenotypic variation explained by the loci identified through a whole-genome scan ranged from 3% to 25% across different traits, while fitting all markers simultaneously generally provided heritability estimates close to those from pedigree-based analysis. Results from ‘Q+K’ and ‘K’ models were very similar, suggesting that the SNP-based kinship matrix captures most of the underlying population structure. Correlations between allele substitution effects obtained from single-marker and all-marker analyses were about 0.90 for all traits. Use of SNP-derived realized relationships in linear mixed models provided a better goodness-of-fit than pedigree-based expected relationships. Genomic regions with probable pleiotropic effects were supported by the corresponding higher linkage group (LG) level estimated genetic correlations. Conclusions The accuracy of artificial selection in plants species can be increased by using more precise

  19. Efficient use of systems mapping without expert knowledge. Comment on "Mapping complex traits as a dynamic system" by L. Sun and R. Wu

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Zitong; Sillanpää, Mikko J.

    2015-06-01

    Functional mapping [11], pioneered by Rongling Wu and his colleagues, is a statistical framework for studying the association between quantitative trait locus (QTL) and dynamic quantitative traits. Functional mapping integrate phenotype information over multiple time points as a smooth function/curve to study the genetic mechanism behind phenotype development and growth. The comprehensive review of Sun and Wu further generalize the concept of functional mapping to systems mapping and network mapping [8], in which the target output variable is not merely a single trait, but rather a complex biological system comprising various interactive components of a single trait or a set of correlated genes or proteins activating the same pathways/networks. With systems mapping, genetic influence on interactions, causal relationships and/or steady-state of the dynamic biological system behind the complex traits can be investigated.

  20. Positive Affect and the Complex Dynamics of Human Flourishing

    PubMed Central

    Fredrickson, Barbara L.; Losada, Marcial F.

    2011-01-01

    Extending B. L. Fredrickson’s (1998) broaden-and-build theory of positive emotions and M. Losada’s (1999) nonlinear dynamics model of team performance, the authors predict that a ratio of positive to negative affect at or above 2.9 will characterize individuals in flourishing mental health. Participants (N = 188) completed an initial survey to identify flourishing mental health and then provided daily reports of experienced positive and negative emotions over 28 days. Results showed that the mean ratio of positive to negative affect was above 2.9 for individuals classified as flourishing and below that threshold for those not flourishing. Together with other evidence, these findings suggest that a set of general mathematical principles may describe the relations between positive affect and human flourishing. PMID:16221001

  1. Positive affect and the complex dynamics of human flourishing.

    PubMed

    Fredrickson, Barbara L; Losada, Marcial F

    2005-10-01

    Extending B. L. Fredrickson's (1998) broaden-and-build theory of positive emotions and M. Losada's (1999) nonlinear dynamics model of team performance, the authors predict that a ratio of positive to negative affect at or above 2.9 will characterize individuals in flourishing mental health. Participants (N=188) completed an initial survey to identify flourishing mental health and then provided daily reports of experienced positive and negative emotions over 28 days. Results showed that the mean ratio of positive to negative affect was above 2.9 for individuals classified as flourishing and below that threshold for those not flourishing. Together with other evidence, these findings suggest that a set of general mathematical principles may describe the relations between positive affect and human flourishing. PMID:16221001

  2. Positive Affect and the Complex Dynamics of Human Flourishing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fredrickson, Barbara L.; Losada, Marcial F.

    2005-01-01

    Extending B. L. Fredrickson's (1998) broaden-and-build theory of positive emotions and M. Losada's (1999) nonlinear dynamics model of team performance, the authors predict that a ratio of positive to negative affect at or above 2.9 will characterize individuals in flourishing mental health. Participants (N=188) completed an initial survey to…

  3. Relevance of Five-Factor Model personality traits for obsessive-compulsive symptoms in patients with psychotic disorders and their un-affected siblings.

    PubMed

    Schirmbeck, Frederike; Boyette, Lindy-Lou; van der Valk, Renate; Meijer, Carin; Dingemans, Peter; Van, Rien; de Haan, Lieuwe; Kahn, René S; de Haan, Lieuwe; van Os, Jim; Wiersma, Durk; Bruggeman, Richard; Cahn, Wiepke; Meijer, Carin; Myin-Germeys, Inez

    2015-02-28

    High rates of obsessive-compulsive symptoms (OCS) in schizophrenia require pathogenic explanations. Personality traits may represent risk and resiliency factors for the development of mental disorders and their comorbidities. The aim of the present study was to explore the associations between Five-Factor Model (FFM) personality traits and the liability for OCS in patients with psychotic disorders and in their un-affected siblings. FFM traits, occurrence and severity of OCS and (subclinical) psychotic symptoms were assessed in 208 patients and in 281 siblings. Differences in FFM traits between participants with vs. without comorbid OCS were examined and the predictive value of FFM traits on group categorization was evaluated. Associations between FFM traits and OCS severity were investigated. Patients and siblings with OCS showed significantly higher Neuroticism compared to their counterparts without OCS. Neuroticism was positively associated with higher OCS severity and significantly predicted group assignment in both patients and in siblings. Patients with comorbid OCS presented with lower scores on Extraversion and Conscientiousness. Higher Neuroticism, and to a lesser degree lower Extraversion and Conscientiousness might add to the vulnerability of patients with a psychotic disorder to also develop OCS. Future prospective studies are needed to elucidate proposed personality-psychopathology interrelations and possible mediating factors.

  4. Queerying the Affective Politics of Doctoral Education: Toward Complex Visions of Agency and Affect

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Burford, James

    2015-01-01

    Higher education (HE) researchers, like their colleagues across the humanities and social sciences, are increasingly tuning in to the political possibilities offered by working with emotion and affect. Reading across this work, it would seem that certain practices, and their associated affects, have achieved an aura of legitimacy, and political…

  5. Identification of quantitative trait loci affecting resistance to gastro-intestinal parasites in a double backcross population of Red Maasai and Dorper sheep

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A genome-wide scan for quantitative trait loci (QTL) affecting gastrointestinal (GI) nematode resistance was completed using a double backcross sheep population derived from Red Maasai and Dorper ewes bred to F1 rams. These breeds were chosen, because Red Maasai sheep are known to be more tolerant ...

  6. Unemotional on all counts: Evidence of reduced affective responses in individuals with high callous-unemotional traits across emotion systems and valences.

    PubMed

    Fanti, Kostas A; Panayiotou, Georgia; Lombardo, Michael V; Kyranides, Melina Nicole

    2016-01-01

    The current study aimed to identify atypical neurophysiological activity associated with deficient affective processing in individuals with high callous-unemotional traits (CU). Fifty-six participants (M age = 20.52; 46% male) divided in two groups, differentiated on levels of CU traits, were invited to participate in the experimental phase of the study. Medial prefrontal cortex activity, measured with functional Near-Infrared Spectroscopy, and facial electro-myography activity were recorded during videos depicting violent, comedy and neutral scenes. Individuals high on CU traits showed similar medial prefrontal cortex oxygenated hemoglobin (HbO(2)) activity to positive and negative films, while the pre-frontal cortical responses of low CU individuals were more pronounced to positive than negative materials. High CU participants also showed reduced facial electromyography at the corrugator muscle in response to violent films, which was not differentiated from their responses to comedy films. These findings suggest that individuals high on CU traits show reduced but not absent (i.e., flat) affect to emotional material. Deficits in processing positive and negative valent material, measured with different neuro-physiological modalities, might be essential to understand CU traits.

  7. QTL mapping - Current status and challenges: Comment on "Mapping complex traits as a dynamic system" by L. Sun and R. Wu

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Nianjun

    2015-06-01

    One of the important objectives of genetic study is to understand the underlying mechanism of complex traits. However, complex traits are complex in terms of their mechanisms. First, multiple genetic variants are involved in different ways. In addition to the main effects (such as additive and dominant effects), these genetic variants may interact with each other [1-4], they may have pleiotropic effects [5,6], there may be genomic imprinting (a phenomenon where some genes are expressed or repressed depending on their parental origin) [7-9] and epigenetic effects [10-14]. In addition, environment often fits in via gene by environment interaction [15,16]. A more complicated genetic interaction between QTLs is from different genomes, i.e. the genome-genome interaction which may involve genomes from the same organisms or even different organisms [17-19]. Biology is multifactorial and dynamic. Complex traits are closely related to developmental changes in an organism's ontogeny, giving time an important role in the formation of complex traits. From the point of view of ecology, the formation of complex traits is extremely complex involving not only the genes of an individual but also the genotypes of its neighbors that co-occur with it [17,18,20-23]. Such complexity makes QTL mapping very challenging.

  8. Genome wide scan for quantitative trait loci affecting tick resistance in cattle (Bos taurus × Bos indicus)

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background In tropical countries, losses caused by bovine tick Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus infestation have a tremendous economic impact on cattle production systems. Genetic variation between Bos taurus and Bos indicus to tick resistance and molecular biology tools might allow for the identification of molecular markers linked to resistance traits that could be used as an auxiliary tool in selection programs. The objective of this work was to identify QTL associated with tick resistance/susceptibility in a bovine F2 population derived from the Gyr (Bos indicus) × Holstein (Bos taurus) cross. Results Through a whole genome scan with microsatellite markers, we were able to map six genomic regions associated with bovine tick resistance. For most QTL, we have found that depending on the tick evaluation season (dry and rainy) different sets of genes could be involved in the resistance mechanism. We identified dry season specific QTL on BTA 2 and 10, rainy season specific QTL on BTA 5, 11 and 27. We also found a highly significant genome wide QTL for both dry and rainy seasons in the central region of BTA 23. Conclusions The experimental F2 population derived from Gyr × Holstein cross successfully allowed the identification of six highly significant QTL associated with tick resistance in cattle. QTL located on BTA 23 might be related with the bovine histocompatibility complex. Further investigation of these QTL will help to isolate candidate genes involved with tick resistance in cattle. PMID:20433753

  9. The Personality Trait of Intolerance to Uncertainty Affects Behavior in a Novel Computer-Based Conditioned Place Preference Task.

    PubMed

    Radell, Milen L; Myers, Catherine E; Beck, Kevin D; Moustafa, Ahmed A; Allen, Michael Todd

    2016-01-01

    Recent work has found that personality factors that confer vulnerability to addiction can also affect learning and economic decision making. One personality trait which has been implicated in vulnerability to addiction is intolerance to uncertainty (IU), i.e., a preference for familiar over unknown (possibly better) options. In animals, the motivation to obtain drugs is often assessed through conditioned place preference (CPP), which compares preference for contexts where drug reward was previously received. It is an open question whether participants with high IU also show heightened preference for previously rewarded contexts. To address this question, we developed a novel computer-based CPP task for humans in which participants guide an avatar through a paradigm in which one room contains frequent reward (i.e., rich) and one contains less frequent reward (i.e., poor). Following exposure to both contexts, subjects are assessed for preference to enter the previously rich and previously poor room. Individuals with low IU showed little bias to enter the previously rich room first, and instead entered both rooms at about the same rate which may indicate a foraging behavior. By contrast, those with high IU showed a strong bias to enter the previously rich room first. This suggests an increased tendency to chase reward in the intolerant group, consistent with previously observed behavior in opioid-addicted individuals. Thus, the personality factor of high IU may produce a pre-existing cognitive bias that provides a mechanism to promote decision-making processes that increase vulnerability to addiction.

  10. Exploring the complexity of the childhood trait-psychopathology association: Continuity, pathoplasty, and complication effects.

    PubMed

    De Bolle, Marleen; De Clercq, Barbara; De Caluwé, Elien; Verbeke, Lize

    2016-02-01

    Four different models have been generally proposed as plausible etiological explanations for the relation between personality and psychopathology, namely, the vulnerability, complication, pathoplasty, and spectrum or continuity model. The current study entails a joint investigation of the continuity, pathoplasty, and complication models to explain the nature of the associations between early maladaptive traits and psychopathology over time in 717 referred and community children (54.4% girls), aged from 8 to 14 years. Across a 2-year time span, maladaptive traits and psychopathology were measured at three different time points, thereby relying on comprehensive and age-specific dimensional operationalizations of both personality symptoms and psychopathology. The results demonstrate overall compelling evidence for the continuity model, finding more focused support for pathoplasty and complication effects for particular combinations of personality symptoms and psychopathology dimensions. As expected, the continuity associations were found to be more robust for those personality-psychopathology associations that are conceptually closer, such as the emotional instability/introversion-internalizing problems association and the disagreeableness-externalizing problems association. Continuity associations were also stronger when personality was considered from a maladaptive rather than from a general trait perspective. The implication of the findings for the treatment of psychopathology and personality symptoms are briefly discussed. PMID:25916837

  11. Genome-enabled Modeling of Microbial Biogeochemistry using a Trait-based Approach. Does Increasing Metabolic Complexity Increase Predictive Capabilities?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    King, E.; Karaoz, U.; Molins, S.; Bouskill, N.; Anantharaman, K.; Beller, H. R.; Banfield, J. F.; Steefel, C. I.; Brodie, E.

    2015-12-01

    The biogeochemical functioning of ecosystems is shaped in part by genomic information stored in the subsurface microbiome. Cultivation-independent approaches allow us to extract this information through reconstruction of thousands of genomes from a microbial community. Analysis of these genomes, in turn, gives an indication of the organisms present and their functional roles. However, metagenomic analyses can currently deliver thousands of different genomes that range in abundance/importance, requiring the identification and assimilation of key physiologies and metabolisms to be represented as traits for successful simulation of subsurface processes. Here we focus on incorporating -omics information into BioCrunch, a genome-informed trait-based model that represents the diversity of microbial functional processes within a reactive transport framework. This approach models the rate of nutrient uptake and the thermodynamics of coupled electron donors and acceptors for a range of microbial metabolisms including heterotrophs and chemolithotrophs. Metabolism of exogenous substrates fuels catabolic and anabolic processes, with the proportion of energy used for cellular maintenance, respiration, biomass development, and enzyme production based upon dynamic intracellular and environmental conditions. This internal resource partitioning represents a trade-off against biomass formation and results in microbial community emergence across a fitness landscape. Biocrunch was used here in simulations that included organisms and metabolic pathways derived from a dataset of ~1200 non-redundant genomes reflecting a microbial community in a floodplain aquifer. Metagenomic data was directly used to parameterize trait values related to growth and to identify trait linkages associated with respiration, fermentation, and key enzymatic functions such as plant polymer degradation. Simulations spanned a range of metabolic complexities and highlight benefits originating from simulations

  12. HaploReg v4: systematic mining of putative causal variants, cell types, regulators and target genes for human complex traits and disease.

    PubMed

    Ward, Lucas D; Kellis, Manolis

    2016-01-01

    More than 90% of common variants associated with complex traits do not affect proteins directly, but instead the circuits that control gene expression. This has increased the urgency of understanding the regulatory genome as a key component for translating genetic results into mechanistic insights and ultimately therapeutics. To address this challenge, we developed HaploReg (http://compbio.mit.edu/HaploReg) to aid the functional dissection of genome-wide association study (GWAS) results, the prediction of putative causal variants in haplotype blocks, the prediction of likely cell types of action, and the prediction of candidate target genes by systematic mining of comparative, epigenomic and regulatory annotations. Since first launching the website in 2011, we have greatly expanded HaploReg, increasing the number of chromatin state maps to 127 reference epigenomes from ENCODE 2012 and Roadmap Epigenomics, incorporating regulator binding data, expanding regulatory motif disruption annotations, and integrating expression quantitative trait locus (eQTL) variants and their tissue-specific target genes from GTEx, Geuvadis, and other recent studies. We present these updates as HaploReg v4, and illustrate a use case of HaploReg for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)-associated SNPs with putative brain regulatory mechanisms.

  13. Molecular genetics of growth and development in Populus (Salicaceae). V. Mapping quantitative trait loci affecting leaf variation

    SciTech Connect

    Wu, R.; Bradshaw, H.D. Jr.; Stettler, R.F.

    1997-02-01

    The genetic variation of leaf morphology and development was studied in the 2-yr-old replicated plantation of an interspecific hybrid pedigree of Populus trichocarpa T. & G. and P. deltoides Marsh. via both molecular and quantitative genetic methods. Leaf traits chosen showed pronounced differences between the original parents, including leaf size, shape, orientation, color, structure, petiole size, and petiole cross section. In the F{sub 2} generation, leaf traits were all significantly different among genotypes, but with significant effects due to genotype X crown-position interaction. Variation in leaf pigmentation, petiole length, and petiole length proportion appeared to be under the control of few quantitative trait loci (QTLs). More QTLs were associated with single leaf area, leaf shape, lamina angle, abaxial color, and petiole flatness, and in these traits the number of QTLs varied among crown positions. In general the estimates of QTL numbers from Wright`s biometric method were close to those derived from molecular markers. For those traits with few underlying QTLs, a single marker interval could explain from 30-60% of the observed phenotypic variance. For multigenic traits, certain markers contributed more substantially to the observed variation than others. Genetic cluster analysis showed developmentally related traits to be more strongly associated with each other than with unrelated traits. This finding was also supported by the QTL mapping. For example, the same chromosomal segment of linkage group L seemed to account for 20% of the phenotypic variation of all dimension-related traits, leaf size, petiole length, and midrib angle. In both traits, the P. deltoides alleles had positive effects and were dominant to the P. trichocarpa alleles. Similar relationships were also found for lamina angle, abaxial greenness, and petiole flatness. 72 refs., 3 figs., 2 tabs.

  14. Are the interpersonal and identity disturbances in the borderline personality disorder criteria linked to the traits of affective instability and impulsivity?

    PubMed

    Koenigsberg, H W; Harvey, P D; Mitropoulou, V; New, A S; Goodman, M; Silverman, J; Serby, M; Schopick, F; Siever, L J

    2001-08-01

    This study examines the degree to which two putative biologically influenced personality traits, affective instability and impulsive aggression, are associated with some of the interpersonal and intrapsychic disturbances of borderline personality disorder (BPD) and with choice of defense mechanism. In a sample of 152 personality disorder patients, affective instability and impulsive aggression were measured. Defense mechanisms were assessed in 140 of these patients using the Defensive Style Questionnaire (DSQ). The correlations between the traits of affective instability and impulsive aggression and the eight DSM-III-R criteria for borderline personality disorder and 20 DSQ defenses were examined. Affective instability was significantly correlated with the DSM-III-R criteria of identity disturbance, chronic emptiness or boredom, inappropriate anger, suicidality, and the affective instability criteria. It also was associated with the defenses of splitting, projection, acting out, passive aggression, undoing, and autistic fantasy. Impulsive aggression was related to unstable interpersonal relationships, inappropriate anger and impulsiveness and with the defense of acting out. It was negatively correlated with the defenses of suppression and reaction formation. A number of the interpersonal and experiential disturbances and defense mechanisms that are features of BPD are associated with the traits of affective instability and impulsive aggression among patients with personality disorders. PMID:11556702

  15. How vegetation patterning affects sediment dynamics in complex landscapes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baartman, Jantiene; Temme, Arnaud; Saco, Patricia

    2016-04-01

    Semi-arid ecosystems are often spatially self-organized in typical patterns of vegetation bands with high plant cover interspersed with bare soil areas, also known as 'tigerbush'. Tigerbush dynamics have been studied using model simulations on flat synthetic landscapes, although in some cases straight slopes were used. The feedbacks between vegetation and more realistic and complex landscapes have not been studied yet, even though these landscapes are much more prevalent. Hence, our objective was to determine the effect of landform variation on vegetation patterning and sediment dynamics. We linked two existing models that simulate (a) plant growth, death and dispersal of vegetation, and (b) erosion and sedimentation. The model was calibrated on a straight planar hillslope and then applied to (i) a set of synthetic but more complex topographies and (ii) three real-world landscapes. Furthermore, sediment dynamics were evaluated by comparing simulated sediment output with and without vegetation dynamics. Results show banded vegetation patterning on all synthetic topographies, always perpendicular to the slope gradient. For real topographies, banded vegetation was simulated in the relatively flat, rolling landscape and in the dissected landscape when slopes were gentle. In the steep dissected landscape and the alluvial fan, vegetation was simulated to grow in local depressions where moisture is present whereas hilltops were bare. Including vegetation dynamics resulted in significantly less simulated erosion and relatively more deposition compared to simulations with uniformly distributed vegetation.

  16. Complex contexts and relationships affect clinical decisions in group therapy.

    PubMed

    Tasca, Giorgio A; Mcquaid, Nancy; Balfour, Louise

    2016-09-01

    Clinical errors tend to be underreported even though examining them can provide important training and professional development opportunities. The group therapy context may be prone to clinician errors because of the added complexity within which therapists work and patients receive treatment. We discuss clinical errors that occurred within a group therapy in which a patient for whom group was not appropriate was admitted to the treatment and then was not removed by the clinicians. This was countertherapeutic for both patient and group. Two clinicians were involved: a clinical supervisor who initially assessed and admitted the patient to the group, and a group therapist. To complicate matters, the group therapy occurred within the context of a clinical research trial. The errors, possible solutions, and recommendations are discussed within Reason's Organizational Accident Model (Reason, 2000). In particular, we discuss clinician errors in the context of countertransference and clinician heuristics, group therapy as a local work condition that complicates clinical decision-making, and the impact of the research context as a latent organizational factor. We also present clinical vignettes from the pregroup preparation, group therapy, and supervision. Group therapists are more likely to avoid errors in clinical decisions if they engage in reflective practice about their internal experiences and about the impact of the context in which they work. Therapists must keep in mind the various levels of group functioning, especially related to the group-as-a-whole (i.e., group composition, cohesion, group climate, and safety) when making complex clinical decisions in order to optimize patient outcomes. (PsycINFO Database Record PMID:27631861

  17. Statistical epistasis between candidate gene alleles for complex tuber traits in an association mapping population of tetraploid potato.

    PubMed

    Li, Li; Paulo, Maria-João; van Eeuwijk, Fred; Gebhardt, Christiane

    2010-11-01

    Association mapping using DNA-based markers is a novel tool in plant genetics for the analysis of complex traits. Potato tuber yield, starch content, starch yield and chip color are complex traits of agronomic relevance, for which carbohydrate metabolism plays an important role. At the functional level, the genes and biochemical pathways involved in carbohydrate metabolism are among the best studied in plants. Quantitative traits such as tuber starch and sugar content are therefore models for association genetics in potato based on candidate genes. In an association mapping experiment conducted with a population of 243 tetraploid potato varieties and breeding clones, we previously identified associations between individual candidate gene alleles and tuber starch content, starch yield and chip quality. In the present paper, we tested 190 DNA markers at 36 loci scored in the same association mapping population for pairwise statistical epistatic interactions. Fifty marker pairs were associated mainly with tuber starch content and/or starch yield, at a cut-off value of q ≤ 0.20 for the experiment-wide false discovery rate (FDR). Thirteen marker pairs had an FDR of q ≤ 0.10. Alleles at loci encoding ribulose-bisphosphate carboxylase/oxygenase activase (Rca), sucrose phosphate synthase (Sps) and vacuolar invertase (Pain1) were most frequently involved in statistical epistatic interactions. The largest effect on tuber starch content and starch yield was observed for the paired alleles Pain1-8c and Rca-1a, explaining 9 and 10% of the total variance, respectively. The combination of these two alleles increased the means of tuber starch content and starch yield. Biological models to explain the observed statistical epistatic interactions are discussed.

  18. Fast set-based association analysis using summary data from GWAS identifies novel gene loci for human complex traits

    PubMed Central

    Bakshi, Andrew; Zhu, Zhihong; Vinkhuyzen, Anna A. E.; Hill, W. David; McRae, Allan F.; Visscher, Peter M.; Yang, Jian

    2016-01-01

    We propose a method (fastBAT) that performs a fast set-based association analysis for human complex traits using summary-level data from genome-wide association studies (GWAS) and linkage disequilibrium (LD) data from a reference sample with individual-level genotypes. We demonstrate using simulations and analyses of real datasets that fastBAT is more accurate and orders of magnitude faster than the prevailing methods. Using fastBAT, we analyze summary data from the latest meta-analyses of GWAS on 150,064–339,224 individuals for height, body mass index (BMI), and schizophrenia. We identify 6 novel gene loci for height, 2 for BMI, and 3 for schizophrenia at PfastBAT < 5 × 10−8. The gain of power is due to multiple small independent association signals at these loci (e.g. the THRB and FOXP1 loci for schizophrenia). The method is general and can be applied to GWAS data for all complex traits and diseases in humans and to such data in other species. PMID:27604177

  19. Fast set-based association analysis using summary data from GWAS identifies novel gene loci for human complex traits.

    PubMed

    Bakshi, Andrew; Zhu, Zhihong; Vinkhuyzen, Anna A E; Hill, W David; McRae, Allan F; Visscher, Peter M; Yang, Jian

    2016-01-01

    We propose a method (fastBAT) that performs a fast set-based association analysis for human complex traits using summary-level data from genome-wide association studies (GWAS) and linkage disequilibrium (LD) data from a reference sample with individual-level genotypes. We demonstrate using simulations and analyses of real datasets that fastBAT is more accurate and orders of magnitude faster than the prevailing methods. Using fastBAT, we analyze summary data from the latest meta-analyses of GWAS on 150,064-339,224 individuals for height, body mass index (BMI), and schizophrenia. We identify 6 novel gene loci for height, 2 for BMI, and 3 for schizophrenia at PfastBAT < 5 × 10(-8). The gain of power is due to multiple small independent association signals at these loci (e.g. the THRB and FOXP1 loci for schizophrenia). The method is general and can be applied to GWAS data for all complex traits and diseases in humans and to such data in other species. PMID:27604177

  20. Impacts of Population Structure and Analytical Models in Genome-Wide Association Studies of Complex Traits in Forest Trees: A Case Study in Eucalyptus globulus

    PubMed Central

    Garcia, Martín N.; Acuña, Cintia; Borralho, Nuno M. G.; Grattapaglia, Dario; Marcucci Poltri, Susana N.

    2013-01-01

    The promise of association genetics to identify genes or genomic regions controlling complex traits has generated a flurry of interest. Such phenotype-genotype associations could be useful to accelerate tree breeding cycles, increase precision and selection intensity for late expressing, low heritability traits. However, the prospects of association genetics in highly heterozygous undomesticated forest trees can be severely impacted by the presence of cryptic population and pedigree structure. To investigate how to better account for this, we compared the GLM and five combinations of the Unified Mixed Model (UMM) on data of a low-density genome-wide association study for growth and wood property traits carried out in a Eucalyptus globulus population (n = 303) with 7,680 Diversity Array Technology (DArT) markers. Model comparisons were based on the degree of deviation from the uniform distribution and estimates of the mean square differences between the observed and expected p-values of all significant marker-trait associations detected. Our analysis revealed the presence of population and family structure. There was not a single best model for all traits. Striking differences in detection power and accuracy were observed among the different models especially when population structure was not accounted for. The UMM method was the best and produced superior results when compared to GLM for all traits. Following stringent correction for false discoveries, 18 marker-trait associations were detected, 16 for tree diameter growth and two for lignin monomer composition (S∶G ratio), a key wood property trait. The two DArT markers associated with S∶G ratio on chromosome 10, physically map within 1 Mbp of the ferulate 5-hydroxylase (F5H) gene, providing a putative independent validation of this marker-trait association. This study details the merit of collectively integrate population structure and relatedness in association analyses in undomesticated, highly

  1. Resource quality affects weapon and testis size and the ability of these traits to respond to selection in the leaf-footed cactus bug, Narnia femorata.

    PubMed

    Sasson, Daniel A; Munoz, Patricio R; Gezan, Salvador A; Miller, Christine W

    2016-04-01

    The size of weapons and testes can be central to male reproductive success. Yet, the expression of these traits is often extremely variable. Studies are needed that take a more complete organism perspective, investigating the sources of variation in both traits simultaneously and using developmental conditions that mimic those in nature. In this study, we investigated the components of variation in weapon and testis sizes using the leaf-footed cactus bug, Narnia femorata (Hemiptera: Coreidae) on three natural developmental diets. We show that the developmental diet has profound effects on both weapon and testis expression and scaling. Intriguingly, males in the medium-quality diet express large weapons but have relatively tiny testes, suggesting complex allocation decisions. We also find that heritability, evolvability, and additive genetic variation are highest in the high-quality diet for testis and body mass. This result suggests that these traits may have an enhanced ability to respond to selection during a small window of time each year when this diet is available. Taken together, these results illustrate that normal, seasonal fluctuations in the nutritional environment may play a large role in the expression of sexually selected traits and the ability of these traits to respond to selection. PMID:27066225

  2. Resource quality affects weapon and testis size and the ability of these traits to respond to selection in the leaf-footed cactus bug, Narnia femorata.

    PubMed

    Sasson, Daniel A; Munoz, Patricio R; Gezan, Salvador A; Miller, Christine W

    2016-04-01

    The size of weapons and testes can be central to male reproductive success. Yet, the expression of these traits is often extremely variable. Studies are needed that take a more complete organism perspective, investigating the sources of variation in both traits simultaneously and using developmental conditions that mimic those in nature. In this study, we investigated the components of variation in weapon and testis sizes using the leaf-footed cactus bug, Narnia femorata (Hemiptera: Coreidae) on three natural developmental diets. We show that the developmental diet has profound effects on both weapon and testis expression and scaling. Intriguingly, males in the medium-quality diet express large weapons but have relatively tiny testes, suggesting complex allocation decisions. We also find that heritability, evolvability, and additive genetic variation are highest in the high-quality diet for testis and body mass. This result suggests that these traits may have an enhanced ability to respond to selection during a small window of time each year when this diet is available. Taken together, these results illustrate that normal, seasonal fluctuations in the nutritional environment may play a large role in the expression of sexually selected traits and the ability of these traits to respond to selection.

  3. Convergence, recurrence and diversification of complex sperm traits in diving beetles (Dytiscidae).

    PubMed

    Higginson, Dawn M; Miller, Kelly B; Segraves, Kari A; Pitnick, Scott

    2012-05-01

    Sperm display remarkable morphological diversity among even closely related species, a pattern that is widely attributed to postcopulatory sexual selection. Surprisingly few studies have used phylogenetic analyses to discern the details of evolutionary diversification in ornaments and armaments subject to sexual selection, and the origins of novel sperm traits and their subsequent modification are particularly poorly understood. Here we investigate sperm evolution in diving beetles (Dytiscidae), revealing dramatic diversification in flagellum length, head shape, presence of sperm heteromorphism, and the presence/type of sperm conjugation, an unusual trait where two or more sperm unite for motility or transport. Sperm conjugation was found to be the ancestral condition in diving beetles, with subsequent diversification into three forms, each exhibiting varying degrees of evolutionary loss, convergence, and recurrence. Sperm head shape, but not length or heteromorphism, was found to evolve in a significantly correlated manner with conjugation, consistent with the different mechanisms of head alignment and binding required for the different forms of conjugation. Our study reveals that sperm morphological evolution is channeled along particular evolutionary pathways (i.e., conjugate form), yet subject to considerable diversification within those pathways through modification in sperm length, head shape, and heteromorphism.

  4. A Principal Components-Based Clustering Method to Identify Variants Associated with Complex Traits

    PubMed Central

    Black, Mary Helen; Watanabe, Richard M.

    2011-01-01

    Background Multivariate methods ranging from joint SNP to principal components analysis (PCA) have been developed for testing multiple markers in a region for association with disease and disease-related traits. However, these methods suffer from low power and/or the inability to identify the subset of markers contributing to evidence for association under various scenarios. Methods We introduce or-thoblique principal components-based clustering (OPCC) as an alternative approach to identify specific subsets of markers showing association with a quantitative outcome of interest. We demonstrate the utility of OPCC using simulation studies and an example from the literature on type 2 diabetes. Results Compared to traditional methods, OPCC has similar or improved power under various scenarios of linkage disequilibrium structure and genotype availability. Most importantly, our simulations show how OPCC accurately parses large numbers of markers to a subset containing the causal variant or its proxy. Conclusion OPCC is a powerful and efficient data reduction method for detecting associations between gene variants and disease-related traits. Unlike alternative methodologies, OPCC has the ability to isolate the effect of causal SNP(s) from among large sets of markers in a candidate region. Therefore, OPCC is an improvement over PCA for testing multiple SNP associations With phenotypes Of interest. PMID:21389731

  5. Deconvoluting complex tissues for expression quantitative trait locus-based analyses

    PubMed Central

    Seo, Ji-Heui; Li, Qiyuan; Fatima, Aquila; Eklund, Aron; Szallasi, Zoltan; Polyak, Kornelia; Richardson, Andrea L.; Freedman, Matthew L.

    2013-01-01

    Breast cancer genome-wide association studies have pinpointed dozens of variants associated with breast cancer pathogenesis. The majority of risk variants, however, are located outside of known protein-coding regions. Therefore, identifying which genes the risk variants are acting through presents an important challenge. Variants that are associated with mRNA transcript levels are referred to as expression quantitative trait loci (eQTLs). Many studies have demonstrated that eQTL-based strategies provide a direct way to connect a trait-associated locus with its candidate target gene. Performing eQTL-based analyses in human samples is complicated because of the heterogeneous nature of human tissue. We addressed this issue by devising a method to computationally infer the fraction of cell types in normal human breast tissues. We then applied this method to 13 known breast cancer risk loci, which we hypothesized were eQTLs. For each risk locus, we took all known transcripts within a 2 Mb interval and performed an eQTL analysis in 100 reduction mammoplasty cases. A total of 18 significant associations were discovered (eight in the epithelial compartment and 10 in the stromal compartment). This study highlights the ability to perform large-scale eQTL studies in heterogeneous tissues. PMID:23650637

  6. The Personality Trait of Intolerance to Uncertainty Affects Behavior in a Novel Computer-Based Conditioned Place Preference Task

    PubMed Central

    Radell, Milen L.; Myers, Catherine E.; Beck, Kevin D.; Moustafa, Ahmed A.; Allen, Michael Todd

    2016-01-01

    Recent work has found that personality factors that confer vulnerability to addiction can also affect learning and economic decision making. One personality trait which has been implicated in vulnerability to addiction is intolerance to uncertainty (IU), i.e., a preference for familiar over unknown (possibly better) options. In animals, the motivation to obtain drugs is often assessed through conditioned place preference (CPP), which compares preference for contexts where drug reward was previously received. It is an open question whether participants with high IU also show heightened preference for previously rewarded contexts. To address this question, we developed a novel computer-based CPP task for humans in which participants guide an avatar through a paradigm in which one room contains frequent reward (i.e., rich) and one contains less frequent reward (i.e., poor). Following exposure to both contexts, subjects are assessed for preference to enter the previously rich and previously poor room. Individuals with low IU showed little bias to enter the previously rich room first, and instead entered both rooms at about the same rate which may indicate a foraging behavior. By contrast, those with high IU showed a strong bias to enter the previously rich room first. This suggests an increased tendency to chase reward in the intolerant group, consistent with previously observed behavior in opioid-addicted individuals. Thus, the personality factor of high IU may produce a pre-existing cognitive bias that provides a mechanism to promote decision-making processes that increase vulnerability to addiction. PMID:27555829

  7. The Personality Trait of Intolerance to Uncertainty Affects Behavior in a Novel Computer-Based Conditioned Place Preference Task.

    PubMed

    Radell, Milen L; Myers, Catherine E; Beck, Kevin D; Moustafa, Ahmed A; Allen, Michael Todd

    2016-01-01

    Recent work has found that personality factors that confer vulnerability to addiction can also affect learning and economic decision making. One personality trait which has been implicated in vulnerability to addiction is intolerance to uncertainty (IU), i.e., a preference for familiar over unknown (possibly better) options. In animals, the motivation to obtain drugs is often assessed through conditioned place preference (CPP), which compares preference for contexts where drug reward was previously received. It is an open question whether participants with high IU also show heightened preference for previously rewarded contexts. To address this question, we developed a novel computer-based CPP task for humans in which participants guide an avatar through a paradigm in which one room contains frequent reward (i.e., rich) and one contains less frequent reward (i.e., poor). Following exposure to both contexts, subjects are assessed for preference to enter the previously rich and previously poor room. Individuals with low IU showed little bias to enter the previously rich room first, and instead entered both rooms at about the same rate which may indicate a foraging behavior. By contrast, those with high IU showed a strong bias to enter the previously rich room first. This suggests an increased tendency to chase reward in the intolerant group, consistent with previously observed behavior in opioid-addicted individuals. Thus, the personality factor of high IU may produce a pre-existing cognitive bias that provides a mechanism to promote decision-making processes that increase vulnerability to addiction. PMID:27555829

  8. Do Biopesticides Affect the Demographic Traits of a Parasitoid Wasp and Its Biocontrol Services through Sublethal Effects?

    PubMed Central

    Biondi, Antonio; Zappalà, Lucia; Stark, John D.; Desneux, Nicolas

    2013-01-01

    Pesticide risk assessments are usually based on short-term acute toxicity tests, while longer-term population dynamic related traits, critical to the success of biological control and Integrated Pest Management (IPM) programs, are often overlooked. This is increasingly important with respect to new biopesticides that frequently cause no short-term acute effects, but that can induce multiple physiological and behavioral sublethal effects, leading to a decrease in population growth and ecosystem services. In this study we assessed the lethal and sublethal effects of six biopesticides [abamectin, azadirachtin, Bacillus thuringiensis, borax plus citrus oil (Prev-Am®), emamectin benzoate, and spinosad], used in tomato crops to control the invasive pest Tuta absoluta (Lepidoptera: Gelechiidae), on adults and pupae of the parasitoid Bracon nigricans (Hymenoptera: Braconidae). Data on female survival and production of female offspring were used to calculate population growth indexes as a measure of population recovery after pesticide exposure. Spinosad caused 100% and 80% mortality in exposed adults (even 10 d after the treatment) and pupae, respectively. Although most of the biopesticides had low levels of acute toxicity, multiple sublethal effects were observed. The biocontrol activity of both females that survived 1-h and 10-d old residues, and females that emerged from topically treated pupae was significantly affected by the application of the neurotoxic insecticides emamectin benzoate and abamectin. Furthermore, very low B. nigricans demographic growth indices were estimated for these two insecticides, indicating potential local extinction of the wasp populations. Among the tested products, Bt proved to be the safest for B. nigricans adults and pupae. Our findings emphasize that acute toxicity assessment alone cannot fully predict the actual impact of pesticides on non-target parasitoids. Thus, sublethal effects related to the species specific life-history variables

  9. Seed trait-mediated selection by rodents affects mutualistic interactions and seedling recruitment of co-occurring tree species.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Hongmao; Yan, Chuan; Chang, Gang; Zhang, Zhibin

    2016-02-01

    As mutualists, seed dispersers may significantly affect mutualistic interactions and seedling recruitment of sympatric plants that share similar seed dispersers, but studies are rare. Here, we compared seed dispersal fitness in two co-occurring plant species (Armeniaca sibirica and Amygdalus davidiana) that inhabit warm temperate deciduous forest in northern China. We tested the hypothesis that seed trait-mediated selection by rodents may influence mutualistic interactions with rodents and then seedling establishment of co-occurring plant species. A. davidiana seeds are larger and harder (thick endocarps) than A. sibirica seeds, but they have similar levels of nutrients (crude fat, crude protein), caloric value and tannin. More A. sibirica seedlings are found in the field. Semi-natural enclosure tests indicated that the two seed species were both harvested by the same six rodent species, but that A. sibirica had mutualistic interactions (scatter hoarding) with four rodent species (Apodemus peninsulae, A. agrarius, Sciurotamias davidianus, Tamias sibiricus), and A. davidiana with only one (S. davidianus). Tagged seed dispersal experiments in the field indicated that more A. sibirica seeds were scatter-hoarded by rodents, and more A. sibirica seeds survived to the next spring and became seedlings. A. sibirica seeds derive more benefit from seed dispersal by rodents than A. davidiana seeds, particularly in years with limited seed dispersers, which well explained the higher seedling recruitment of A. sibirica compared with that of A. davidiana under natural conditions. Our results suggest that seed dispersers may play a significant role in seedling recruitment and indirect competition between co-occurring plant species. PMID:26546082

  10. Do biopesticides affect the demographic traits of a parasitoid wasp and its biocontrol services through sublethal effects?

    PubMed

    Biondi, Antonio; Zappalà, Lucia; Stark, John D; Desneux, Nicolas

    2013-01-01

    Pesticide risk assessments are usually based on short-term acute toxicity tests, while longer-term population dynamic related traits, critical to the success of biological control and Integrated Pest Management (IPM) programs, are often overlooked. This is increasingly important with respect to new biopesticides that frequently cause no short-term acute effects, but that can induce multiple physiological and behavioral sublethal effects, leading to a decrease in population growth and ecosystem services. In this study we assessed the lethal and sublethal effects of six biopesticides [abamectin, azadirachtin, Bacillus thuringiensis, borax plus citrus oil (Prev-Am®), emamectin benzoate, and spinosad], used in tomato crops to control the invasive pest Tuta absoluta (Lepidoptera: Gelechiidae), on adults and pupae of the parasitoid Bracon nigricans (Hymenoptera: Braconidae). Data on female survival and production of female offspring were used to calculate population growth indexes as a measure of population recovery after pesticide exposure. Spinosad caused 100% and 80% mortality in exposed adults (even 10 d after the treatment) and pupae, respectively. Although most of the biopesticides had low levels of acute toxicity, multiple sublethal effects were observed. The biocontrol activity of both females that survived 1-h and 10-d old residues, and females that emerged from topically treated pupae was significantly affected by the application of the neurotoxic insecticides emamectin benzoate and abamectin. Furthermore, very low B. nigricans demographic growth indices were estimated for these two insecticides, indicating potential local extinction of the wasp populations. Among the tested products, Bt proved to be the safest for B. nigricans adults and pupae. Our findings emphasize that acute toxicity assessment alone cannot fully predict the actual impact of pesticides on non-target parasitoids. Thus, sublethal effects related to the species specific life-history variables

  11. Do biopesticides affect the demographic traits of a parasitoid wasp and its biocontrol services through sublethal effects?

    PubMed

    Biondi, Antonio; Zappalà, Lucia; Stark, John D; Desneux, Nicolas

    2013-01-01

    Pesticide risk assessments are usually based on short-term acute toxicity tests, while longer-term population dynamic related traits, critical to the success of biological control and Integrated Pest Management (IPM) programs, are often overlooked. This is increasingly important with respect to new biopesticides that frequently cause no short-term acute effects, but that can induce multiple physiological and behavioral sublethal effects, leading to a decrease in population growth and ecosystem services. In this study we assessed the lethal and sublethal effects of six biopesticides [abamectin, azadirachtin, Bacillus thuringiensis, borax plus citrus oil (Prev-Am®), emamectin benzoate, and spinosad], used in tomato crops to control the invasive pest Tuta absoluta (Lepidoptera: Gelechiidae), on adults and pupae of the parasitoid Bracon nigricans (Hymenoptera: Braconidae). Data on female survival and production of female offspring were used to calculate population growth indexes as a measure of population recovery after pesticide exposure. Spinosad caused 100% and 80% mortality in exposed adults (even 10 d after the treatment) and pupae, respectively. Although most of the biopesticides had low levels of acute toxicity, multiple sublethal effects were observed. The biocontrol activity of both females that survived 1-h and 10-d old residues, and females that emerged from topically treated pupae was significantly affected by the application of the neurotoxic insecticides emamectin benzoate and abamectin. Furthermore, very low B. nigricans demographic growth indices were estimated for these two insecticides, indicating potential local extinction of the wasp populations. Among the tested products, Bt proved to be the safest for B. nigricans adults and pupae. Our findings emphasize that acute toxicity assessment alone cannot fully predict the actual impact of pesticides on non-target parasitoids. Thus, sublethal effects related to the species specific life-history variables

  12. Seed trait-mediated selection by rodents affects mutualistic interactions and seedling recruitment of co-occurring tree species.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Hongmao; Yan, Chuan; Chang, Gang; Zhang, Zhibin

    2016-02-01

    As mutualists, seed dispersers may significantly affect mutualistic interactions and seedling recruitment of sympatric plants that share similar seed dispersers, but studies are rare. Here, we compared seed dispersal fitness in two co-occurring plant species (Armeniaca sibirica and Amygdalus davidiana) that inhabit warm temperate deciduous forest in northern China. We tested the hypothesis that seed trait-mediated selection by rodents may influence mutualistic interactions with rodents and then seedling establishment of co-occurring plant species. A. davidiana seeds are larger and harder (thick endocarps) than A. sibirica seeds, but they have similar levels of nutrients (crude fat, crude protein), caloric value and tannin. More A. sibirica seedlings are found in the field. Semi-natural enclosure tests indicated that the two seed species were both harvested by the same six rodent species, but that A. sibirica had mutualistic interactions (scatter hoarding) with four rodent species (Apodemus peninsulae, A. agrarius, Sciurotamias davidianus, Tamias sibiricus), and A. davidiana with only one (S. davidianus). Tagged seed dispersal experiments in the field indicated that more A. sibirica seeds were scatter-hoarded by rodents, and more A. sibirica seeds survived to the next spring and became seedlings. A. sibirica seeds derive more benefit from seed dispersal by rodents than A. davidiana seeds, particularly in years with limited seed dispersers, which well explained the higher seedling recruitment of A. sibirica compared with that of A. davidiana under natural conditions. Our results suggest that seed dispersers may play a significant role in seedling recruitment and indirect competition between co-occurring plant species.

  13. Ornithine decarboxylase gene is a positional candidate gene affecting growth and carcass traits in F₂ intercross chickens.

    PubMed

    Uemoto, Y; Sato, S; Ohtake, T; Sato, S; Okumura, Y; Kobayashi, E

    2011-01-01

    The ornithine decarboxylase (ODC) gene is a candidate gene for growth and carcass traits. It is located on chicken chromosome 3 in a region where QTL for growth and carcass traits have previously been detected in the F₂ population. The objectives of this study were to identify polymorphisms of the ODC gene in an F₂ resource population and to examine the effects of these ODC polymorphisms on growth and carcass traits. The F₂ resource population was obtained by crossing a Shamo male and White Plymouth Rock females. The F₂ population was then measured for growth and carcass traits and used for positional candidate gene analysis. A total of 6 novel SNP and a novel indel mutation were identified in the parental population. Three SNP (g.-638A>G, g.-465C>T, and g.-353C>T) and a 4-bp indel mutation (g.-633_-632ins) in the promoter region of the ODC gene were identified in the parental population, and 2 haplotypes composed of these mutations were segregated in the parental population. A QTL analysis was performed, and the QTL for some growth and carcass traits were detected at a significant level and on a similar position to the ODC gene. Significant associations were found between haplotypes in the promoter region of the ODC gene and these traits in the F₂ population, and the effect of haplotype on BW at 9 wk of age was the most significant. The haplotypes of the ODC gene found in this study might help in understanding the genetic structure of growth and carcass traits and in improving these traits directly by MAS. Therefore, further functional studies are necessary to evaluate the effects of promoter mutations at a molecular level. PMID:21177441

  14. The Glass Half Empty: How Emotional Exhaustion Affects the State-Trait Discrepancy in Self-Reports of Teaching Emotions

    PubMed Central

    Goetz, Thomas; Becker, Eva S.; Bieg, Madeleine; Keller, Melanie M.; Frenzel, Anne C.; Hall, Nathan C.

    2015-01-01

    Following from previous research on intensity bias and the accessibility model of emotional self-report, the present study examined the role of emotional exhaustion in explaining the discrepancy in teachers’ reports of their trait (habitual) versus state (momentary, “real”) emotions. Trait reports (habitual emotions, exhaustion) were assessed via trait questionnaires, and state reports (momentary emotions) were assessed in real time via the experience sampling method by using personal digital assistants (N = 69 high school teachers; 1,089 measures within teachers). In line with our assumptions, multi-level analyses showed that, as compared to the state assessment, teachers reported higher levels of habitual teaching-related emotions of anger, anxiety, shame, boredom, enjoyment, and pride. Additionally, the state-trait discrepancy in self-reports of negative emotions was accounted for by teachers’ emotional exhaustion, with high exhaustion levels corresponding with a greater state-trait discrepancy. Exhaustion levels did not moderate the state-trait discrepancy in positive emotions indicating that perceived emotional exhaustion may reflect identity-related cognitions specific to the negative belief system. Implications for research and educational practice are discussed. PMID:26368911

  15. The Glass Half Empty: How Emotional Exhaustion Affects the State-Trait Discrepancy in Self-Reports of Teaching Emotions.

    PubMed

    Goetz, Thomas; Becker, Eva S; Bieg, Madeleine; Keller, Melanie M; Frenzel, Anne C; Hall, Nathan C

    2015-01-01

    Following from previous research on intensity bias and the accessibility model of emotional self-report, the present study examined the role of emotional exhaustion in explaining the discrepancy in teachers' reports of their trait (habitual) versus state (momentary, "real") emotions. Trait reports (habitual emotions, exhaustion) were assessed via trait questionnaires, and state reports (momentary emotions) were assessed in real time via the experience sampling method by using personal digital assistants (N = 69 high school teachers; 1,089 measures within teachers). In line with our assumptions, multi-level analyses showed that, as compared to the state assessment, teachers reported higher levels of habitual teaching-related emotions of anger, anxiety, shame, boredom, enjoyment, and pride. Additionally, the state-trait discrepancy in self-reports of negative emotions was accounted for by teachers' emotional exhaustion, with high exhaustion levels corresponding with a greater state-trait discrepancy. Exhaustion levels did not moderate the state-trait discrepancy in positive emotions indicating that perceived emotional exhaustion may reflect identity-related cognitions specific to the negative belief system. Implications for research and educational practice are discussed.

  16. Structural complexity of the environment affects the survival of alternative male reproductive tactics.

    PubMed

    Lukasik, Piotr; Radwan, Jacek; Tomkins, Joseph L

    2006-02-01

    Alternative reproductive tactics in males are often associated with divergent phenotypes expressed as phenotypically plastic threshold traits. The evolution of threshold traits in these species has been modeled under the conditional evolutionarily stable strategy (ESS). Both strategic and genetic models predict that perturbations to the fitness trade-off between the male morphs will lead to a shift in the ESS switch point of the threshold. So far, demographic factors that influence the competitive ability of male morphs have been investigated and related to intraspecific population variation in male dimorphic thresholds. Here we reveal evidence for the theoretical prediction that abiotic features of the environment, in particular its structural complexity, are likely to influence the ESS threshold. In the male dimorphic mite Sancassania berlesei, we monitored the survival of aggressive fighter males and their benign scrambler counterparts in populations that differed in structural complexity. We found that, consistent with our prediction, the complex habitat favored fighter males, enabling them to kill a greater number of rival scramblers. We found no effect of habitat complexity on the survival of fighter males. These results demonstrate how abiotic as well as biotic aspects of the environment can be important in determining the frequencies of males adopting alternative tactics in different species or populations.

  17. Understanding the Etiology of Complex Traits: Symbiotic Relationships between Psychology and Genetics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Grigorenko, Elena L.

    2007-01-01

    The present article offers comments on the infusion of methodologies, approaches, reasoning strategies, and findings from the fields of genetics and genomics into studies of complex human behaviors (hereafter, complex phenotypes). Specifically, I discuss issues of generality and specificity, causality, and replicability as they pertain to…

  18. Six-Year Change in Affect Optimization and Affect Complexity Across the Adult Life Span: A Further Examination

    PubMed Central

    Labouvie-Vief, Gisela; Diehl, Manfred; Jain, Elizabeth; Zhang, Fang

    2008-01-01

    This study examines the life course of 2 independent components of adult affective development, 1 aimed at differentiation and complexity, the other aimed at optimization and positive emotional balance. These 2 components are predicted to have different developmental trajectories over the adult life span and to become related in a compensatory fashion under conditions of resource restrictions, such as those related to late life. Using individual growth curve estimation, we modeled 6-year longitudinal changes in the 2 components in a total sample of 388 individuals ranging in age from 15 to 88 years. As predicted, initial level of affect optimization was positively associated with age up to late middle age with a subsequent leveling off; individual rates of change were found to decelerate with age up to age 60 years and accelerate again around age 80 years. For affect complexity, initial level of affect complexity was positively associated with age up to age 45 years and negatively associated with age from then on, whereas individual rates of change were negatively associated with age, and this association tended to get stronger with age. PMID:18179294

  19. Genome-wide association of multiple complex traits in outbred mice by ultra-low-coverage sequencing.

    PubMed

    Nicod, Jérôme; Davies, Robert W; Cai, Na; Hassett, Carl; Goodstadt, Leo; Cosgrove, Cormac; Yee, Benjamin K; Lionikaite, Vikte; McIntyre, Rebecca E; Remme, Carol Ann; Lodder, Elisabeth M; Gregory, Jennifer S; Hough, Tertius; Joynson, Russell; Phelps, Hayley; Nell, Barbara; Rowe, Clare; Wood, Joe; Walling, Alison; Bopp, Nasrin; Bhomra, Amarjit; Hernandez-Pliego, Polinka; Callebert, Jacques; Aspden, Richard M; Talbot, Nick P; Robbins, Peter A; Harrison, Mark; Fray, Martin; Launay, Jean-Marie; Pinto, Yigal M; Blizard, David A; Bezzina, Connie R; Adams, David J; Franken, Paul; Weaver, Tom; Wells, Sara; Brown, Steve D M; Potter, Paul K; Klenerman, Paul; Lionikas, Arimantas; Mott, Richard; Flint, Jonathan

    2016-08-01

    Two bottlenecks impeding the genetic analysis of complex traits in rodents are access to mapping populations able to deliver gene-level mapping resolution and the need for population-specific genotyping arrays and haplotype reference panels. Here we combine low-coverage (0.15×) sequencing with a new method to impute the ancestral haplotype space in 1,887 commercially available outbred mice. We mapped 156 unique quantitative trait loci for 92 phenotypes at a 5% false discovery rate. Gene-level mapping resolution was achieved at about one-fifth of the loci, implicating Unc13c and Pgc1a at loci for the quality of sleep, Adarb2 for home cage activity, Rtkn2 for intensity of reaction to startle, Bmp2 for wound healing, Il15 and Id2 for several T cell measures and Prkca for bone mineral content. These findings have implications for diverse areas of mammalian biology and demonstrate how genome-wide association studies can be extended via low-coverage sequencing to species with highly recombinant outbred populations. PMID:27376238

  20. Genome-wide association of multiple complex traits in outbred mice by ultra-low-coverage sequencing.

    PubMed

    Nicod, Jérôme; Davies, Robert W; Cai, Na; Hassett, Carl; Goodstadt, Leo; Cosgrove, Cormac; Yee, Benjamin K; Lionikaite, Vikte; McIntyre, Rebecca E; Remme, Carol Ann; Lodder, Elisabeth M; Gregory, Jennifer S; Hough, Tertius; Joynson, Russell; Phelps, Hayley; Nell, Barbara; Rowe, Clare; Wood, Joe; Walling, Alison; Bopp, Nasrin; Bhomra, Amarjit; Hernandez-Pliego, Polinka; Callebert, Jacques; Aspden, Richard M; Talbot, Nick P; Robbins, Peter A; Harrison, Mark; Fray, Martin; Launay, Jean-Marie; Pinto, Yigal M; Blizard, David A; Bezzina, Connie R; Adams, David J; Franken, Paul; Weaver, Tom; Wells, Sara; Brown, Steve D M; Potter, Paul K; Klenerman, Paul; Lionikas, Arimantas; Mott, Richard; Flint, Jonathan

    2016-08-01

    Two bottlenecks impeding the genetic analysis of complex traits in rodents are access to mapping populations able to deliver gene-level mapping resolution and the need for population-specific genotyping arrays and haplotype reference panels. Here we combine low-coverage (0.15×) sequencing with a new method to impute the ancestral haplotype space in 1,887 commercially available outbred mice. We mapped 156 unique quantitative trait loci for 92 phenotypes at a 5% false discovery rate. Gene-level mapping resolution was achieved at about one-fifth of the loci, implicating Unc13c and Pgc1a at loci for the quality of sleep, Adarb2 for home cage activity, Rtkn2 for intensity of reaction to startle, Bmp2 for wound healing, Il15 and Id2 for several T cell measures and Prkca for bone mineral content. These findings have implications for diverse areas of mammalian biology and demonstrate how genome-wide association studies can be extended via low-coverage sequencing to species with highly recombinant outbred populations.

  1. Near infrared spectroscopy and chemometrics analysis of complex traits in animal physiology

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Near infrared reflectance (NIR) applications have been expanding from the traditional framework of small molecule chemical purity and composition (as defined by spectral libraries) to complex system analysis and holistic exploratory approaches to questions in biochemistry, biophysics and environment...

  2. Spatial Patterns in Herbivory on a Coral Reef Are Influenced by Structural Complexity but Not by Algal Traits

    PubMed Central

    Vergés, Adriana; Vanderklift, Mathew A.; Doropoulos, Christopher; Hyndes, Glenn A.

    2011-01-01

    Background Patterns of herbivory can alter the spatial structure of ecosystems, with important consequences for ecosystem functions and biodiversity. While the factors that drive spatial patterns in herbivory in terrestrial systems are well established, comparatively less is known about what influences the distribution of herbivory in coral reefs. Methodology and Principal Findings We quantified spatial patterns of macroalgal consumption in a cross-section of Ningaloo Reef (Western Australia). We used a combination of descriptive and experimental approaches to assess the influence of multiple macroalgal traits and structural complexity in establishing the observed spatial patterns in macroalgal herbivory, and to identify potential feedback mechanisms between herbivory and macroalgal nutritional quality. Spatial patterns in macroalgal consumption were best explained by differences in structural complexity among habitats. The biomass of herbivorous fish, and rates of herbivory were always greater in the structurally-complex coral-dominated outer reef and reef flat habitats, which were also characterised by high biomass of herbivorous fish, low cover and biomass of macroalgae and the presence of unpalatable algae species. Macroalgal consumption decreased to undetectable levels within 75 m of structurally-complex reef habitat, and algae were most abundant in the structurally-simple lagoon habitats, which were also characterised by the presence of the most palatable algae species. In contrast to terrestrial ecosystems, herbivory patterns were not influenced by the distribution, productivity or nutritional quality of resources (macroalgae), and we found no evidence of a positive feedback between macroalgal consumption and the nitrogen content of algae. Significance This study highlights the importance of seascape-scale patterns in structural complexity in determining spatial patterns of macroalgal consumption by fish. Given the importance of herbivory in maintaining the

  3. Identification of Nitrogen Use Efficiency Genes in Barley: Searching for QTLs Controlling Complex Physiological Traits

    PubMed Central

    Han, Mei; Wong, Julia; Su, Tao; Beatty, Perrin H.; Good, Allen G.

    2016-01-01

    Over the past half century, the use of nitrogen (N) fertilizers has markedly increased crop yields, but with considerable negative effects on the environment and human health. Consequently, there has been a strong push to reduce the amount of N fertilizer used by maximizing the nitrogen use efficiency (NUE) of crops. One approach would be to use classical genetics to improve the NUE of a crop plant. This involves both conventional breeding and quantitative trait loci (QTL) mapping in combination with marker-assisted selection (MAS) to track key regions of the chromosome that segregate for NUE. To achieve this goal, one of initial steps is to characterize the NUE-associated genes, then use the profiles of specific genes to combine plant physiology and genetics to improve plant performance. In this study, on the basis of genetic homology and expression analysis, barley candidate genes from a variety of families that exhibited potential roles in enhancing NUE were identified and mapped. We then performed an analysis of QTLs associated with NUE in field trials and further analyzed their map-location data to narrow the search for these candidate genes. These results provide a novel insight on the identification of NUE genes and for the future prospects, will lead to a more thorough understanding of physiological significances of the diverse gene families that may be associated with NUE in barley.

  4. Bud set in poplar--genetic dissection of a complex trait in natural and hybrid populations.

    PubMed

    Rohde, Antje; Storme, Véronique; Jorge, Véronique; Gaudet, Muriel; Vitacolonna, Nicola; Fabbrini, Francesco; Ruttink, Tom; Zaina, Giusi; Marron, Nicolas; Dillen, Sophie; Steenackers, Marijke; Sabatti, Maurizio; Morgante, Michele; Boerjan, Wout; Bastien, Catherine

    2011-01-01

    • The seasonal timing of growth events is crucial to tree distribution and conservation. The seasonal growth cycle is strongly adapted to the local climate that is changing because of global warming. We studied bud set as one cornerstone of the seasonal growth cycle in an integrative approach. • Bud set was dissected at the phenotypic level into several components, and phenotypic components with most genetic variation were identified. While phenotypic variation resided in the timing of growth cessation, and even so more in the duration from growth cessation to bud set, the timing of growth cessation had a stronger genetic component in both natural and hybrid populations. • Quantitative trait loci (QTL) were identified for the most discriminative phenotypic bud-set components across four poplar pedigrees. The QTL from different pedigrees were recurrently detected in six regions of the poplar genome. • These regions of 1.83-4.25 Mbp in size, containing between 202 and 394 genes, form the basis for further molecular-genetic dissection of bud set.

  5. Development of a complex floral trait: The pollinator-attracting petal spots of the beetle daisy, Gorteria diffusa (Asteraceae).

    PubMed

    Thomas, Meredith M; Rudall, Paula J; Ellis, Allan G; Savolainen, Vincent; Glover, Beverley J

    2009-12-01

    Angiosperms possess a variety of complex floral traits that attract animal pollinators. Dark petal spots have evolved independently many times across the angiosperm phylogeny and have been shown to attract insect pollinators from several lineages. Here we present new data on the ontogeny and morphological complexity of the elaborate insect-mimicking petal spots of the South African daisy species, Gorteria diffusa (Asteraceae), commonly known as the beetle daisy, although it is fly-pollinated. Using light and scanning electron microscopy and histology, we identified three distinct specialized cell types of the petal epidermis that compose the petal spot. Sophisticated patterning of pigments, cuticular elaborations, and multicellular papillate trichomes make the G. diffusa petal spot a uniquely complex three-dimensional floral ornament. Examination of young inflorescence meristems revealed that G. diffusa ray florets develop (and probably also initiate) basipetally, in the opposite direction to the disc florets-a developmental phenomenon that has been found in some other daisies, but which contradicts conventional theories of daisy inflorescence architecture. Using these ontogenetic and morphological data, we have identified the mechanism by which G. diffusa patterns its insect-mimicking petal spots, and we propose a testable model for the genetic regulation of petal spot identity. PMID:21622334

  6. Identification of Genetic Associations and Functional Polymorphisms of SAA1 Gene Affecting Milk Production Traits in Dairy Cattle

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Shengli; Zhang, Qin; Sun, Dongxiao

    2016-01-01

    Our initial RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) revealed that the Serum amyloid A1 (SAA1) gene was differentially expressed in the mammary glands of lactating Holstein cows with extremely high versus low phenotypic values of milk protein and fat percentage. To further validate the genetic effect and potential molecular mechanisms of SAA1 gene involved in regulating milk production traits in dairy cattle, we herein performed a study through genotype-phenotype associations. Six identified SNPs were significantly associated with one or more milk production traits (0.00002< P < 0.0025), providing additional evidence for the potential role of SAA1 variants in milk production traits in dairy cows. Subsequently, both luciferase assay and electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA) clearly demonstrated that the allele A of g.-963C>A increased the promoter activity by binding the PARP factor while allele C did not. Bioinformatics analysis indicated that the secondary structure of SAA protein changed by the substitution A/G in the locus c. +2510A>G. Our findings were the first to reveal the significant associations of the SAA1 gene with milk production traits, providing basis for further biological function validation, and two identified SNPs, g.-963C>A and c. +2510A>G, may be considered as genetic markers for breeding in dairy cattle. PMID:27610623

  7. Creative Thinking of University Teachers in the Age of Intellectual Capital: Is It Affected by Personality Types and Traits?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    AlFuqaha, Isam Najib; Tobasi, Adnan

    2015-01-01

    This article attempts to probe the level of creative thinking of teachers at Philadelphia University in Jordan, and to define its relation with several independent demographic variables, namely age, gender, duration of experience, specialization, and personality types and traits. To accomplish this purpose, three questionnaires are administered on…

  8. Identification of Genetic Associations and Functional Polymorphisms of SAA1 Gene Affecting Milk Production Traits in Dairy Cattle.

    PubMed

    Yang, Shaohua; Gao, Yahui; Zhang, Shengli; Zhang, Qin; Sun, Dongxiao

    2016-01-01

    Our initial RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) revealed that the Serum amyloid A1 (SAA1) gene was differentially expressed in the mammary glands of lactating Holstein cows with extremely high versus low phenotypic values of milk protein and fat percentage. To further validate the genetic effect and potential molecular mechanisms of SAA1 gene involved in regulating milk production traits in dairy cattle, we herein performed a study through genotype-phenotype associations. Six identified SNPs were significantly associated with one or more milk production traits (0.00002< P < 0.0025), providing additional evidence for the potential role of SAA1 variants in milk production traits in dairy cows. Subsequently, both luciferase assay and electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA) clearly demonstrated that the allele A of g.-963C>A increased the promoter activity by binding the PARP factor while allele C did not. Bioinformatics analysis indicated that the secondary structure of SAA protein changed by the substitution A/G in the locus c. +2510A>G. Our findings were the first to reveal the significant associations of the SAA1 gene with milk production traits, providing basis for further biological function validation, and two identified SNPs, g.-963C>A and c. +2510A>G, may be considered as genetic markers for breeding in dairy cattle. PMID:27610623

  9. Genetic Variation Segregating in Natural Populations of Tribolium Castaneum Affecting Traits Observed in Hybrids with T. Freemani

    PubMed Central

    Wade, M. J.; Johnson, N. A.; Jones, R.; Siguel, V.; McNaughton, M.

    1997-01-01

    We investigated patterns of within-species genetic variation for traits observed in hybrids (hybrid numbers, hybrid sex ratios, and hybrid male deformities) between two species of flour beetles, Tribolium castaneum and T. freemani. We found genetic variation segregating among four natural populations of T. castaneum as well as within these populations. For some hybrid traits, we observed as much variation among populations 750 km apart as between populations on different continents, suggesting genetic differentiation at a local scale. Within natural populations, the variation segregating among sires is greater than that found in an earlier study for an outbred laboratory population and comparable to that observed between inbred lines derived from the outbred stock by eight generations of brother-sister mating. When sires from T. castaneum are mated to conspecific and heterospecific females, we do not observe a significant correlation at the level of the family mean between the intraspecific and interspecific phenotypes, suggesting the independence of the hybrid traits from comparable traits within species. We discuss our findings in relation to the evolutionary genetics of speciation and the expression of epistatic genetic variance in interspecific crosses. PMID:9383066

  10. Interpersonal and Affective Dimensions of Psychopathic Traits in Adolescents: Development and Validation of a Self-Report Instrument

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Houghton, Stephen; Hunter, Simon C.; Khan, Umneea; Tan, Carol

    2013-01-01

    We report the development and psychometric evaluations of a self-report instrument designed to screen for psychopathic traits among mainstream community adolescents. Tests of item functioning were initially conducted with 26 adolescents. In a second study the new instrument was administered to 150 high school adolescents, 73 of who had school…

  11. Hypoxia affects performance traits and body composition of juvenile hybrid striped bass (Morone chrysops x M. saxatilis)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Performance traits and body composition of juvenile hybrid striped bass (Morone chrysops x M. saxatilis) in response to hypoxia were evaluated in replicate tanks maintained at constant dissolved oxygen concentrations that averaged 23.0 +/- 2.3%, 39.7 +/- 3.0%, and 105.5 +/- 9.5% dissolved oxygen sat...

  12. From association to prediction: statistical methods for the dissection and selection of complex traits in plants

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Quantification of genotype-to-phenotype associations is central to many scientific investigations, yet the ability to obtain consistent results may be thwarted without appropriate statistical analyses. Models for association can consider confounding effects in the materials and complex genetic inter...

  13. Seed dimorphism, nutrients and salinity differentially affect seed traits of the desert halophyte Suaeda aralocaspica via multiple maternal effects

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Maternal effects may influence a range of seed traits simultaneously and are likely to be context-dependent. Disentangling the interactions of plant phenotype and growth environment on various seed traits is important for understanding regeneration and establishment of species in natural environments. Here, we used the seed-dimorphic plant Suaeda aralocaspica to test the hypothesis that seed traits are regulated by multiple maternal effects. Results Plants grown from brown seeds had a higher brown:black seed ratio than plants from black seeds, and germination percentage of brown seeds was higher than that of black seeds under all conditions tested. However, the coefficient of variation (CV) for size of black seeds was higher than that of brown seeds. Seeds had the smallest CV at low nutrient and high salinity for plants from brown seeds and at low nutrient and low salinity for plants from black seeds. Low levels of nutrients increased size and germinability of black seeds but did not change the seed morph ratio or size and germinability of brown seeds. High levels of salinity decreased seed size but did not change the seed morph ratio. Seeds from high-salinity maternal plants had a higher germination percentage regardless of level of germination salinity. Conclusions Our study supports the multiple maternal effects hypothesis. Seed dimorphism, nutrient and salinity interacted in determining a range of seed traits of S. aralocaspica via bet-hedging and anticipatory maternal effects. This study highlights the importance of examining different maternal factors and various offspring traits in studies that estimate maternal effects on regeneration. PMID:23006315

  14. Complex transcriptional regulation and independent evolution of fungal-like traits in a relative of animals.

    PubMed

    de Mendoza, Alex; Suga, Hiroshi; Permanyer, Jon; Irimia, Manuel; Ruiz-Trillo, Iñaki

    2015-10-14

    Cell-type specification through differential genome regulation is a hallmark of complex multicellularity. However, it remains unclear how this process evolved during the transition from unicellular to multicellular organisms. To address this question, we investigated transcriptional dynamics in the ichthyosporean Creolimax fragrantissima, a relative of animals that undergoes coenocytic development. We find that Creolimax utilizes dynamic regulation of alternative splicing, long inter-genic non-coding RNAs and co-regulated gene modules associated with animal multicellularity in a cell-type specific manner. Moreover, our study suggests that the different cell types of the three closest animal relatives (ichthyosporeans, filastereans and choanoflagellates) are the product of lineage-specific innovations. Additionally, a proteomic survey of the secretome reveals adaptations to a fungal-like lifestyle. In summary, the diversity of cell types among protistan relatives of animals and their complex genome regulation demonstrates that the last unicellular ancestor of animals was already capable of elaborate specification of cell types.

  15. Knowing right from wrong, but just not always feeling it: relations among callous-unemotional traits, psychopathological symptoms, and cognitive and affective morality judgments in 8- to 12-year-old boys.

    PubMed

    Feilhauer, Johanna; Cima, Maaike; Benjamins, Caroline; Muris, Peter

    2013-12-01

    The present research expands our understanding of cognitive and affective morality by exploring associations with callous-unemotional (CU) traits and externalizing symptoms. Participants were 46 8- to 12-year-old boys from the community who completed the Affective Morality Index, the Youth Self-Report, and the Inventory of Callous-Unemotional Traits. A pattern of results was found indicating that in particular the combination of high CU traits and high externalizing symptoms was associated with lack of affective morality, and an increased perceived likelihood of recommitting antisocial acts (recidivism). The implications of these findings and suggestions for future research are discussed.

  16. Predicting Short-Term Positive Affect in Individuals with Social Anxiety Disorder: The Role of Selected Personality Traits and Emotion Regulation Strategies

    PubMed Central

    Weisman, Jaclyn S.; Rodebaugh, Thomas L.; Lim, Michelle H.; Fernandez, Katya C.

    2015-01-01

    Recently, research has provided support for a moderate, inverse relationship between social anxiety and dispositional positive affect. However, the dynamics of this relationship remain poorly understood. The present study evaluates whether certain personality traits and emotion regulation variables predict short-term positive affect for individuals with social anxiety disorder and healthy controls. Positive affect as measured by two self-report instruments was assessed before and after two tasks in which the participant conversed with either a friend or a romantic partner. Tests of models examining the hypothesized prospective predictors revealed that the paths did not differ significantly across diagnostic group and both groups showed the hypothesized patterns of endorsement for the emotion regulation variables. Further, a variable reflecting difficulty redirecting oneself when distressed prospectively predicted one measure of positive affect. Additional research is needed to explore further the role of emotion regulation strategies on positive emotions for individuals higher in social anxiety. PMID:26119140

  17. Effects of presentation duration on measures of complexity in affective environmental scenes and representational paintings.

    PubMed

    Marin, Manuela M; Leder, Helmut

    2016-01-01

    Complexity constitutes an integral part of humans' environment and is inherent to information processing. However, little is known about the dynamics of visual complexity perception of affective environmental scenes (IAPS pictures) and artworks, such as affective representational paintings. In three experiments, we studied the time course of visual complexity perception by varying presentation duration and comparing subjective ratings with objective measures of complexity. In Experiment 1, 60 females rated 96 IAPS pictures, presented either for 1, 5, or 25s, for familiarity, complexity, pleasantness and arousal. In Experiment 2, another 60 females rated 96 representational paintings. Mean ratings of complexity and pleasantness changed according to presentation duration in a similar vein in both experiments, suggesting an inverted U-shape. No common pattern of results was observed for arousal and familiarity ratings across the two picture sets. The correlations between subjective and objective measures of complexity increased with longer exposure durations for IAPS pictures, but results were more ambiguous for paintings. Experiment 3 explored the time course of the multidimensionality of visual complexity perception. Another 109 females rated the number of objects, their disorganization and the differentiation between a figure-ground vs. complex scene composition of pictures presented for 1 and 5s. The multidimensionality of visual complexity only clearly emerged in the 5-s condition. In both picture sets, the strength of the correlations with objective measures depended on the type of subdimension of complexity and was less affected by presentation duration than correlations with general complexity in Experiments 1 and 2. These results have clear implications for perceptual and cognitive theories, especially for those of esthetic experiences, in which the dynamical changes of complexity perception need to be integrated. PMID:26595281

  18. Effects of presentation duration on measures of complexity in affective environmental scenes and representational paintings.

    PubMed

    Marin, Manuela M; Leder, Helmut

    2016-01-01

    Complexity constitutes an integral part of humans' environment and is inherent to information processing. However, little is known about the dynamics of visual complexity perception of affective environmental scenes (IAPS pictures) and artworks, such as affective representational paintings. In three experiments, we studied the time course of visual complexity perception by varying presentation duration and comparing subjective ratings with objective measures of complexity. In Experiment 1, 60 females rated 96 IAPS pictures, presented either for 1, 5, or 25s, for familiarity, complexity, pleasantness and arousal. In Experiment 2, another 60 females rated 96 representational paintings. Mean ratings of complexity and pleasantness changed according to presentation duration in a similar vein in both experiments, suggesting an inverted U-shape. No common pattern of results was observed for arousal and familiarity ratings across the two picture sets. The correlations between subjective and objective measures of complexity increased with longer exposure durations for IAPS pictures, but results were more ambiguous for paintings. Experiment 3 explored the time course of the multidimensionality of visual complexity perception. Another 109 females rated the number of objects, their disorganization and the differentiation between a figure-ground vs. complex scene composition of pictures presented for 1 and 5s. The multidimensionality of visual complexity only clearly emerged in the 5-s condition. In both picture sets, the strength of the correlations with objective measures depended on the type of subdimension of complexity and was less affected by presentation duration than correlations with general complexity in Experiments 1 and 2. These results have clear implications for perceptual and cognitive theories, especially for those of esthetic experiences, in which the dynamical changes of complexity perception need to be integrated.

  19. Mapping of quantitative trait loci affecting eggshell quality on chromosome 9 in an F(2) intercross between two chicken lines divergently selected for eggshell strength.

    PubMed

    Takahashi, H; Yang, D; Sasaki, O; Furukawa, T; Nirasawa, K

    2009-10-01

    Broken and cracked eggshells are major causes of significant economic losses to the egg production industry. The quantitative trait loci (QTL) on chromosome 9 influencing the quality of eggshells were identified by analysing an intercross between two parent lines developed from the same founder population by a two-way selection for eggshell strength with non-destructive deformation conducted over 14 generations. Chromosome-wide highly significant (P < 0.01) QTL associated with egg weight (EW), short length of egg (SLE), long length of egg (LLE) and eggshell weight were mapped to the distal region of chromosome 9. Among the QTL affecting EW, SLE and LLE, ovocalyxin-32 was identified as a potential candidate gene influencing eggshell traits. Marker-assisted selection based on these QTL could be used to develop strategies for reducing the breakage and cracking of eggs in commercial layer houses. PMID:19780721

  20. Label-free imaging to study phenotypic behavioural traits of cells in complex co-cultures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Suman, Rakesh; Smith, Gabrielle; Hazel, Kathryn E. A.; Kasprowicz, Richard; Coles, Mark; O’Toole, Peter; Chawla, Sangeeta

    2016-02-01

    Time-lapse imaging is a fundamental tool for studying cellular behaviours, however studies of primary cells in complex co-culture environments often requires fluorescent labelling and significant light exposure that can perturb their natural function over time. Here, we describe ptychographic phase imaging that permits prolonged label-free time-lapse imaging of microglia in the presence of neurons and astrocytes, which better resembles in vivo microenvironments. We demonstrate the use of ptychography as an assay to study the phenotypic behaviour of microglial cells in primary neuronal co-cultures through the addition of cyclosporine A, a potent immune-modulator.

  1. Optimal sampling strategies for detecting linkage of a complex trait with known genetic heterogeneity

    SciTech Connect

    Easton, D.F.; Goldgar, D.E.

    1994-09-01

    As genes underlying susceptibility to human disease are identified through linkage analysis, it is becoming increasingly clear that genetic heterogeneity is the rule rather than the exception. The focus of the present work is to examine the power and optimal sampling design for localizing a second disease gene when one disease gene has previously been identified. In particular, we examined the case when the unknown locus had lower penetrance, but higher frequency, than the known locus. Three scenarios regarding knowledge about locus 1 were examined: no linkage information (i.e. standard heterogeneity analysis), tight linkage with a known highly polymorphic marker locus, and mutation testing. Exact expected LOD scores (ELODs) were calculated for a number of two-locus genetic models under the 3 scenarios of heterogeneity for nuclear families containing 2, 3 or 4 affected children, with 0 or 1 affected parents. A cost function based upon the cost of ascertaining and genotyping sufficient samples to achieve an ELOD of 3.0 was used to evaluate the designs. As expected, the power and the optimal pedigree sampling strategy was dependent on the underlying model and the heterogeneity testing status. When the known locus had higher penetrance than the unknown locus, three affected siblings with unaffected parents proved to be optimal for all levels of heterogeneity. In general, mutation testing at the first locus provided substantially more power for detecting the second locus than linkage evidence alone. However, when both loci had relatively low penetrance, mutation testing provided little improvement in power since most families could be expected to be segregating the high risk allele at both loci.

  2. Germination Season and Watering Regime, but Not Seed Morph, Affect Life History Traits in a Cold Desert Diaspore-Heteromorphic Annual

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Juan J.; Tan, Dun Y.; Baskin, Jerry M.; Baskin, Carol C.

    2014-01-01

    Seed morph, abiotic conditions and time of germination can affect plant fitness, but few studies have tested their combined effects on plasticity of plant life history traits. Thus, we tested the hypothesis that seed morph, germination season and watering regime influence phenotypic expression of post-germination life history traits in the diaspore-heteromorphic cold desert winter annual/spring ephemeral Diptychocarpus strictus. The two seed morphs were sown in watered and non-watered plots in late summer, and plants derived from them were watered or not-watered throughout the study. Seed morph did not affect phenology, growth and morphology, survival, dry mass accumulation and allocation or silique and seed production. Seeds in watered plots germinated in autumn (AW) and spring (SW) but only in spring for non-watered plots (SNW). A high percentage of AW, SW and SNW plants survived and reproduced, but flowering date and flowering period of autumn- vs. spring-germinated plants differed. Dry mass also differed with germination season/watering regime (AW > SW > SNW). Number of siliques and seeds increased with plant size (AW > SW > SNW), whereas percent dry mass allocated to reproduction was higher in small plants: SNW > SW > AW. Thus, although seed morph did not affect the expression of life history traits, germination season and watering regime significantly affected phenology, plant size and accumulation and allocation of biomass to reproduction. Flexibility throughout the life cycle of D. strictus is an adaptation to the variation in timing and amount of rainfall in its cold desert habitat. PMID:25013967

  3. Analysis of quantitative trait loci affecting chlorophyll content of rice leaves in a double haploid population and two backcross populations.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Gonghao; Zeng, Jing; He, Yuqing

    2014-02-25

    Chlorophyll content, one of the most important physiological parameters related to plant photosynthesis, is usually used to predict yield potential. To map the quantitative trait loci (QTLs) underlying the chlorophyll content of rice leaves, a double haploid (DH) population was developed from an indica/japonica (Zhenshan 97/Wuyujing 2) crossing and two backcross populations were established subsequently by backcrossing DH lines with each of their parents. The contents of chlorophyll a and chlorophyll b were determined by using a spectrophotometer to directly measure the leaf chlorophyll extracts. To determine the leaf chlorophyll retention along with maturation, all measurements were performed on the day of heading and were repeated 30 days later. A total of 60 QTLs were resolved for all the traits using these three populations. These QTLs were distributed on 10 rice chromosomes, except chromosomes 5 and 10; the closer the traits, the more clustering of the QTLs residing on common rice chromosomal regions. In general, the majority of QTLs that specify chlorophyll a content also play a role in determining chlorophyll b content. Strangely, chlorophyll content in this study was found mostly to be lacking or to have a negative correlation with yield. In both backcross F1 populations, overdominant (or underdominant) loci were more important than complete or partially dominant loci for main-effect QTLs and epistatic QTLs, thereby supporting previous findings that overdominant effects are the primary genetic basis for depression in inbreeding and heterosis in rice.

  4. Complex transcriptional regulation and independent evolution of fungal-like traits in a relative of animals.

    PubMed

    de Mendoza, Alex; Suga, Hiroshi; Permanyer, Jon; Irimia, Manuel; Ruiz-Trillo, Iñaki

    2015-01-01

    Cell-type specification through differential genome regulation is a hallmark of complex multicellularity. However, it remains unclear how this process evolved during the transition from unicellular to multicellular organisms. To address this question, we investigated transcriptional dynamics in the ichthyosporean Creolimax fragrantissima, a relative of animals that undergoes coenocytic development. We find that Creolimax utilizes dynamic regulation of alternative splicing, long inter-genic non-coding RNAs and co-regulated gene modules associated with animal multicellularity in a cell-type specific manner. Moreover, our study suggests that the different cell types of the three closest animal relatives (ichthyosporeans, filastereans and choanoflagellates) are the product of lineage-specific innovations. Additionally, a proteomic survey of the secretome reveals adaptations to a fungal-like lifestyle. In summary, the diversity of cell types among protistan relatives of animals and their complex genome regulation demonstrates that the last unicellular ancestor of animals was already capable of elaborate specification of cell types. PMID:26465111

  5. Complex transcriptional regulation and independent evolution of fungal-like traits in a relative of animals

    PubMed Central

    de Mendoza, Alex; Suga, Hiroshi; Permanyer, Jon; Irimia, Manuel; Ruiz-Trillo, Iñaki

    2015-01-01

    Cell-type specification through differential genome regulation is a hallmark of complex multicellularity. However, it remains unclear how this process evolved during the transition from unicellular to multicellular organisms. To address this question, we investigated transcriptional dynamics in the ichthyosporean Creolimax fragrantissima, a relative of animals that undergoes coenocytic development. We find that Creolimax utilizes dynamic regulation of alternative splicing, long inter-genic non-coding RNAs and co-regulated gene modules associated with animal multicellularity in a cell-type specific manner. Moreover, our study suggests that the different cell types of the three closest animal relatives (ichthyosporeans, filastereans and choanoflagellates) are the product of lineage-specific innovations. Additionally, a proteomic survey of the secretome reveals adaptations to a fungal-like lifestyle. In summary, the diversity of cell types among protistan relatives of animals and their complex genome regulation demonstrates that the last unicellular ancestor of animals was already capable of elaborate specification of cell types. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.08904.001 PMID:26465111

  6. Epigenetic resolution of the ‘curse of complexity’ in adaptive evolution of complex traits

    PubMed Central

    Badyaev, Alexander V

    2014-01-01

    The age of most genes exceeds the longevity of their genomic and physiological associations by many orders of magnitude. Such transient contexts modulate the expression of ancient genes to produce currently appropriate and often highly distinct developmental and functional outcomes. The efficacy of such adaptive modulation is diminished by the high dimensionality of complex organisms and associated vast areas of neutrality in their genotypic and developmental networks (and, thus, weak natural selection). Here I explore whether epigenetic effects facilitate adaptive modulation of complex phenotypes by effectively reducing the dimensionality of their deterministic networks and thus delineating their developmental and evolutionary trajectories even under weak selection. Epigenetic effects that link unconnected or widely dispersed elements of genotype space in ecologically relevant time could account for the rapid appearance of functionally integrated adaptive modifications. On an organismal time scale, conceptually similar processes occur during recurrent epigenetic reprogramming of somatic stem cells to produce, recurrently and reversibly, a bewildering array of differentiated and persistent cell lineages, all sharing identical genomic sequences despite strongly distinct phenotypes. I discuss whether close dependency of onset, scope and duration of epigenetic effects on cellular and genomic context in stem cells could provide insights into contingent modulation of conserved genomic material on a much longer evolutionary time scale. I review potential empirical examples of epigenetic bridges that reduce phenotype dimensionality and accomplish rapid adaptive modulation in the evolution of novelties, expression of behavioural types, and stress-induced ossification schedules. PMID:24882810

  7. Using Multigroup-Multiphase Latent State-Trait Models to Study Treatment-Induced Changes in Intra-Individual State Variability: An Application to Smokers' Affect

    PubMed Central

    Geiser, Christian; Griffin, Daniel; Shiffman, Saul

    2016-01-01

    Sometimes, researchers are interested in whether an intervention, experimental manipulation, or other treatment causes changes in intra-individual state variability. The authors show how multigroup-multiphase latent state-trait (MG-MP-LST) models can be used to examine treatment effects with regard to both mean differences and differences in state variability. The approach is illustrated based on a randomized controlled trial in which N = 338 smokers were randomly assigned to nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) vs. placebo prior to quitting smoking. We found that post quitting, smokers in both the NRT and placebo group had significantly reduced intra-individual affect state variability with respect to the affect items calm and content relative to the pre-quitting phase. This reduction in state variability did not differ between the NRT and placebo groups, indicating that quitting smoking may lead to a stabilization of individuals' affect states regardless of whether or not individuals receive NRT. PMID:27499744

  8. Some additional considerations in modelling the dynamic traits and genome-wide association studies. Comments on "Mapping complex traits as a dynamic system" by L. Sun and R. Wu

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Das, Kiranmoy

    2015-06-01

    The revolution in the genetic research in our time is mainly due to (i) the successful completion of human genome project (2003) and its derivative hapmap project (2005), (ii) advanced statistical methodologies for analyzing ultrahigh dimensional data and (iii) the availability of statistical softwares (R, SAS etc.) to analyze large datasets. When complex traits are to be modeled as dynamic systems, the statistical issues regarding the complexity in the model, predictive power of the model, computational cost etc. are to be addressed adequately for powerful inferences. I will mention two additional considerations (statistical) which make dynamic models more meaningful and the results from GWAS more reliable.

  9. Adult nutrition, but not inbreeding, affects male primary sexual traits in the leaf-footed cactus bug Narnia femorata (Hemiptera: Coreidae).

    PubMed

    Joseph, Paul N; Sasson, Daniel A; Allen, Pablo E; Somjee, Ummat; Miller, Christine W

    2016-07-01

    Adverse conditions may be the norm rather than the exception in natural populations. Many populations experience poor nutrition on a seasonal basis. Further, brief interludes of inbreeding can be common as population density fluctuates and because of habitat fragmentation. Here, we investigated the effects of poor nutrition and inbreeding on traits that can be very important to reproductive success and fitness in males: testes mass, sperm concentration, and sperm viability. Our study species was Narnia femorata, a species introduced to north-central Florida in the 1950s. This species encounters regular, seasonal changes in diet that can have profound phenotypic effects on morphology and behavior. We generated inbred and outbred individuals through a single generation of full-sibling mating or outcrossing, respectively. All juveniles were provided a natural, high-quality diet of Opuntia humifusa cactus cladode with fruit until they reached adulthood. New adult males were put on a high- or low-quality diet for at least 21 days before measurements were taken. As expected, the low-quality diet led to significantly decreased testes mass in both inbred and outbred males, although there were surprisingly no detectable effects on sperm traits. We did not find evidence that inbreeding affected testes mass, sperm concentration, and sperm viability. Our results highlight the immediate and overwhelming effects of nutrition on testes mass, while suggesting that a single generation of inbreeding might not be detrimental for primary sexual traits in this particular population. PMID:27547313

  10. Adult nutrition, but not inbreeding, affects male primary sexual traits in the leaf-footed cactus bug Narnia femorata (Hemiptera: Coreidae).

    PubMed

    Joseph, Paul N; Sasson, Daniel A; Allen, Pablo E; Somjee, Ummat; Miller, Christine W

    2016-07-01

    Adverse conditions may be the norm rather than the exception in natural populations. Many populations experience poor nutrition on a seasonal basis. Further, brief interludes of inbreeding can be common as population density fluctuates and because of habitat fragmentation. Here, we investigated the effects of poor nutrition and inbreeding on traits that can be very important to reproductive success and fitness in males: testes mass, sperm concentration, and sperm viability. Our study species was Narnia femorata, a species introduced to north-central Florida in the 1950s. This species encounters regular, seasonal changes in diet that can have profound phenotypic effects on morphology and behavior. We generated inbred and outbred individuals through a single generation of full-sibling mating or outcrossing, respectively. All juveniles were provided a natural, high-quality diet of Opuntia humifusa cactus cladode with fruit until they reached adulthood. New adult males were put on a high- or low-quality diet for at least 21 days before measurements were taken. As expected, the low-quality diet led to significantly decreased testes mass in both inbred and outbred males, although there were surprisingly no detectable effects on sperm traits. We did not find evidence that inbreeding affected testes mass, sperm concentration, and sperm viability. Our results highlight the immediate and overwhelming effects of nutrition on testes mass, while suggesting that a single generation of inbreeding might not be detrimental for primary sexual traits in this particular population.

  11. Examining Complexity across Domains: Relating Subjective and Objective Measures of Affective Environmental Scenes, Paintings and Music

    PubMed Central

    Marin, Manuela M.; Leder, Helmut

    2013-01-01

    Subjective complexity has been found to be related to hedonic measures of preference, pleasantness and beauty, but there is no consensus about the nature of this relationship in the visual and musical domains. Moreover, the affective content of stimuli has been largely neglected so far in the study of complexity but is crucial in many everyday contexts and in aesthetic experiences. We thus propose a cross-domain approach that acknowledges the multidimensional nature of complexity and that uses a wide range of objective complexity measures combined with subjective ratings. In four experiments, we employed pictures of affective environmental scenes, representational paintings, and Romantic solo and chamber music excerpts. Stimuli were pre-selected to vary in emotional content (pleasantness and arousal) and complexity (low versus high number of elements). For each set of stimuli, in a between-subjects design, ratings of familiarity, complexity, pleasantness and arousal were obtained for a presentation time of 25 s from 152 participants. In line with Berlyne’s collative-motivation model, statistical analyses controlling for familiarity revealed a positive relationship between subjective complexity and arousal, and the highest correlations were observed for musical stimuli. Evidence for a mediating role of arousal in the complexity-pleasantness relationship was demonstrated in all experiments, but was only significant for females with regard to music. The direction and strength of the linear relationship between complexity and pleasantness depended on the stimulus type and gender. For environmental scenes, the root mean square contrast measures and measures of compressed file size correlated best with subjective complexity, whereas only edge detection based on phase congruency yielded equivalent results for representational paintings. Measures of compressed file size and event density also showed positive correlations with complexity and arousal in music, which is

  12. Examining complexity across domains: relating subjective and objective measures of affective environmental scenes, paintings and music.

    PubMed

    Marin, Manuela M; Leder, Helmut

    2013-01-01

    Subjective complexity has been found to be related to hedonic measures of preference, pleasantness and beauty, but there is no consensus about the nature of this relationship in the visual and musical domains. Moreover, the affective content of stimuli has been largely neglected so far in the study of complexity but is crucial in many everyday contexts and in aesthetic experiences. We thus propose a cross-domain approach that acknowledges the multidimensional nature of complexity and that uses a wide range of objective complexity measures combined with subjective ratings. In four experiments, we employed pictures of affective environmental scenes, representational paintings, and Romantic solo and chamber music excerpts. Stimuli were pre-selected to vary in emotional content (pleasantness and arousal) and complexity (low versus high number of elements). For each set of stimuli, in a between-subjects design, ratings of familiarity, complexity, pleasantness and arousal were obtained for a presentation time of 25 s from 152 participants. In line with Berlyne's collative-motivation model, statistical analyses controlling for familiarity revealed a positive relationship between subjective complexity and arousal, and the highest correlations were observed for musical stimuli. Evidence for a mediating role of arousal in the complexity-pleasantness relationship was demonstrated in all experiments, but was only significant for females with regard to music. The direction and strength of the linear relationship between complexity and pleasantness depended on the stimulus type and gender. For environmental scenes, the root mean square contrast measures and measures of compressed file size correlated best with subjective complexity, whereas only edge detection based on phase congruency yielded equivalent results for representational paintings. Measures of compressed file size and event density also showed positive correlations with complexity and arousal in music, which is

  13. Examining complexity across domains: relating subjective and objective measures of affective environmental scenes, paintings and music.

    PubMed

    Marin, Manuela M; Leder, Helmut

    2013-01-01

    Subjective complexity has been found to be related to hedonic measures of preference, pleasantness and beauty, but there is no consensus about the nature of this relationship in the visual and musical domains. Moreover, the affective content of stimuli has been largely neglected so far in the study of complexity but is crucial in many everyday contexts and in aesthetic experiences. We thus propose a cross-domain approach that acknowledges the multidimensional nature of complexity and that uses a wide range of objective complexity measures combined with subjective ratings. In four experiments, we employed pictures of affective environmental scenes, representational paintings, and Romantic solo and chamber music excerpts. Stimuli were pre-selected to vary in emotional content (pleasantness and arousal) and complexity (low versus high number of elements). For each set of stimuli, in a between-subjects design, ratings of familiarity, complexity, pleasantness and arousal were obtained for a presentation time of 25 s from 152 participants. In line with Berlyne's collative-motivation model, statistical analyses controlling for familiarity revealed a positive relationship between subjective complexity and arousal, and the highest correlations were observed for musical stimuli. Evidence for a mediating role of arousal in the complexity-pleasantness relationship was demonstrated in all experiments, but was only significant for females with regard to music. The direction and strength of the linear relationship between complexity and pleasantness depended on the stimulus type and gender. For environmental scenes, the root mean square contrast measures and measures of compressed file size correlated best with subjective complexity, whereas only edge detection based on phase congruency yielded equivalent results for representational paintings. Measures of compressed file size and event density also showed positive correlations with complexity and arousal in music, which is

  14. Variable-Selection Emerges on Top in Empirical Comparison of Whole-Genome Complex-Trait Prediction Methods

    PubMed Central

    Haws, David C.; Rish, Irina; Teyssedre, Simon; He, Dan; Lozano, Aurelie C.; Kambadur, Prabhanjan; Karaman, Zivan; Parida, Laxmi

    2015-01-01

    Accurate prediction of complex traits based on whole-genome data is a computational problem of paramount importance, particularly to plant and animal breeders. However, the number of genetic markers is typically orders of magnitude larger than the number of samples (p >> n), amongst other challenges. We assessed the effectiveness of a diverse set of state-of-the-art methods on publicly accessible real data. The most surprising finding was that approaches with feature selection performed better than others on average, in contrast to the expectation in the community that variable selection is mostly ineffective, i.e. that it does not improve accuracy of prediction, in spite of p >> n. We observed superior performance despite a somewhat simplistic approach to variable selection, possibly suggesting an inherent robustness. This bodes well in general since the variable selection methods usually improve interpretability without loss of prediction power. Apart from identifying a set of benchmark data sets (including one simulated data), we also discuss the performance analysis for each data set in terms of the input characteristics. PMID:26439851

  15. Variable-Selection Emerges on Top in Empirical Comparison of Whole-Genome Complex-Trait Prediction Methods.

    PubMed

    Haws, David C; Rish, Irina; Teyssedre, Simon; He, Dan; Lozano, Aurelie C; Kambadur, Prabhanjan; Karaman, Zivan; Parida, Laxmi

    2015-01-01

    Accurate prediction of complex traits based on whole-genome data is a computational problem of paramount importance, particularly to plant and animal breeders. However, the number of genetic markers is typically orders of magnitude larger than the number of samples (p > n), amongst other challenges. We assessed the effectiveness of a diverse set of state-of-the-art methods on publicly accessible real data. The most surprising finding was that approaches with feature selection performed better than others on average, in contrast to the expectation in the community that variable selection is mostly ineffective, i.e. that it does not improve accuracy of prediction, in spite of p > n. We observed superior performance despite a somewhat simplistic approach to variable selection, possibly suggesting an inherent robustness. This bodes well in general since the variable selection methods usually improve interpretability without loss of prediction power. Apart from identifying a set of benchmark data sets (including one simulated data), we also discuss the performance analysis for each data set in terms of the input characteristics. PMID:26439851

  16. Variable-Selection Emerges on Top in Empirical Comparison of Whole-Genome Complex-Trait Prediction Methods.

    PubMed

    Haws, David C; Rish, Irina; Teyssedre, Simon; He, Dan; Lozano, Aurelie C; Kambadur, Prabhanjan; Karaman, Zivan; Parida, Laxmi

    2015-01-01

    Accurate prediction of complex traits based on whole-genome data is a computational problem of paramount importance, particularly to plant and animal breeders. However, the number of genetic markers is typically orders of magnitude larger than the number of samples (p > n), amongst other challenges. We assessed the effectiveness of a diverse set of state-of-the-art methods on publicly accessible real data. The most surprising finding was that approaches with feature selection performed better than others on average, in contrast to the expectation in the community that variable selection is mostly ineffective, i.e. that it does not improve accuracy of prediction, in spite of p > n. We observed superior performance despite a somewhat simplistic approach to variable selection, possibly suggesting an inherent robustness. This bodes well in general since the variable selection methods usually improve interpretability without loss of prediction power. Apart from identifying a set of benchmark data sets (including one simulated data), we also discuss the performance analysis for each data set in terms of the input characteristics.

  17. A genome-scale integrated approach aids in genetic dissection of complex flowering time trait in chickpea.

    PubMed

    Upadhyaya, Hari D; Bajaj, Deepak; Das, Shouvik; Saxena, Maneesha S; Badoni, Saurabh; Kumar, Vinod; Tripathi, Shailesh; Gowda, C L L; Sharma, Shivali; Tyagi, Akhilesh K; Parida, Swarup K

    2015-11-01

    A combinatorial approach of candidate gene-based association analysis and genome-wide association study (GWAS) integrated with QTL mapping, differential gene expression profiling and molecular haplotyping was deployed in the present study for quantitative dissection of complex flowering time trait in chickpea. Candidate gene-based association mapping in a flowering time association panel (92 diverse desi and kabuli accessions) was performed by employing the genotyping information of 5724 SNPs discovered from 82 known flowering chickpea gene orthologs of Arabidopsis and legumes as well as 832 gene-encoding transcripts that are differentially expressed during flower development in chickpea. GWAS using both genome-wide GBS- and candidate gene-based genotyping data of 30,129 SNPs in a structured population of 92 sequenced accessions (with 200-250 kb LD decay) detected eight maximum effect genomic SNP loci (genes) associated (34% combined PVE) with flowering time. Six flowering time-associated major genomic loci harbouring five robust QTLs mapped on a high-resolution intra-specific genetic linkage map were validated (11.6-27.3% PVE at 5.4-11.7 LOD) further by traditional QTL mapping. The flower-specific expression, including differential up- and down-regulation (>three folds) of eight flowering time-associated genes (including six genes validated by QTL mapping) especially in early flowering than late flowering contrasting chickpea accessions/mapping individuals during flower development was evident. The gene haplotype-based LD mapping discovered diverse novel natural allelic variants and haplotypes in eight genes with high trait association potential (41% combined PVE) for flowering time differentiation in cultivated and wild chickpea. Taken together, eight potential known/candidate flowering time-regulating genes [efl1 (early flowering 1), FLD (Flowering locus D), GI (GIGANTEA), Myb (Myeloblastosis), SFH3 (SEC14-like 3), bZIP (basic-leucine zipper), bHLH (basic helix

  18. A genome-scale integrated approach aids in genetic dissection of complex flowering time trait in chickpea.

    PubMed

    Upadhyaya, Hari D; Bajaj, Deepak; Das, Shouvik; Saxena, Maneesha S; Badoni, Saurabh; Kumar, Vinod; Tripathi, Shailesh; Gowda, C L L; Sharma, Shivali; Tyagi, Akhilesh K; Parida, Swarup K

    2015-11-01

    A combinatorial approach of candidate gene-based association analysis and genome-wide association study (GWAS) integrated with QTL mapping, differential gene expression profiling and molecular haplotyping was deployed in the present study for quantitative dissection of complex flowering time trait in chickpea. Candidate gene-based association mapping in a flowering time association panel (92 diverse desi and kabuli accessions) was performed by employing the genotyping information of 5724 SNPs discovered from 82 known flowering chickpea gene orthologs of Arabidopsis and legumes as well as 832 gene-encoding transcripts that are differentially expressed during flower development in chickpea. GWAS using both genome-wide GBS- and candidate gene-based genotyping data of 30,129 SNPs in a structured population of 92 sequenced accessions (with 200-250 kb LD decay) detected eight maximum effect genomic SNP loci (genes) associated (34% combined PVE) with flowering time. Six flowering time-associated major genomic loci harbouring five robust QTLs mapped on a high-resolution intra-specific genetic linkage map were validated (11.6-27.3% PVE at 5.4-11.7 LOD) further by traditional QTL mapping. The flower-specific expression, including differential up- and down-regulation (>three folds) of eight flowering time-associated genes (including six genes validated by QTL mapping) especially in early flowering than late flowering contrasting chickpea accessions/mapping individuals during flower development was evident. The gene haplotype-based LD mapping discovered diverse novel natural allelic variants and haplotypes in eight genes with high trait association potential (41% combined PVE) for flowering time differentiation in cultivated and wild chickpea. Taken together, eight potential known/candidate flowering time-regulating genes [efl1 (early flowering 1), FLD (Flowering locus D), GI (GIGANTEA), Myb (Myeloblastosis), SFH3 (SEC14-like 3), bZIP (basic-leucine zipper), bHLH (basic helix

  19. Population genomics in Sardinia: a novel approach to hunt for genomic combinations underlying complex traits and diseases.

    PubMed

    Siniscalco, M; Robledo, R; Bender, P K; Carcassi, C; Contu, L; Beck, J C

    1999-01-01

    The availability of highly polymorphic markers permits testing whether complex traits and diseases result from genomic interactions between nonallelic normal variants at separate loci. Such variants may be identified by deviations from the expected distributions of alleles at a high number of polymorphic loci, when individuals with the phenotype of interest are compared to normal controls of the same breeding unit, provided that both groups share the same remote ancestry and had no ancestors in common for the last three to four generations. The circumstances needed for such studies are ideally met on the island of Sardinia. The recurrent finding of the same type of association in separate breeding units between the phenotype of interest and a given genotype should allow a distinction between true genetic identity by descent and randomly occurring identities, as these will be obviously different in separate breeding units. The availability of several breeding units located in sharply different ecological environments will permit assessment of the role of nature/nurture factors in the degree of manifestation of each newly discovered genotype/phenotype association. A pilot study to evaluate the proposed strategy has been carried out in the Sardinian village of Carloforte, a community of about 8,000 individuals who have remained genetically homogeneous. Fifty-five control samples have been genotyped with six tetranucleotide microsatellites and with a subset of the 400 markers contained in the ABI PRISM linkage mapping panel, version 2. The allele frequencies for these microsatellite markers have been determined for these 55 individuals and compared to those from a random sampling of subsets of these 55 persons. For the six tetranucleotide microsatellites, a subset of as few as 20 people displayed the same allele frequency distributions as observed with the original 55 unrelated individuals. In conclusion, when samples are chosen from the same breeding unit, the number

  20. Muscle characteristics and meat quality traits are affected by divergent selection on residual feed intake in pigs.

    PubMed

    Lefaucheur, L; Lebret, B; Ecolan, P; Louveau, I; Damon, M; Prunier, A; Billon, Y; Sellier, P; Gilbert, H

    2011-04-01

    Residual feed intake (RFI) is defined as the difference between the observed feed intake and that expected based on requirements for maintenance and production. A divergent selection was conducted during 4 generations in Large White male pigs to produce low and high RFI lines. The present study aims at determining the influence of this selection on biochemical and histological traits of skeletal muscle, and relating these changes to correlated effects on growth, carcass composition, and meat quality traits. At 8 d preslaughter, biopsies from the LM were taken in the fed state on 14 females from each RFI line fed ad libitum. Animals were slaughtered at 107.8 ± 8.0 kg of BW without any previous fasting. Samples of LM, semimembranosus (SM), biceps femoris (BFM), and rhomboideus muscles were taken at both 30 min and 24 h postmortem. Myofiber typing was only assessed in LM. Low RFI pigs ("efficient") had leaner carcasses with greater muscle content (P < 0.001), less backfat thickness (P < 0.001), and less intramuscular fat content in all 4 muscles (P < 0.01 to P = 0.04). Their greater muscle content was associated with hypertrophy of all fast-twitch fibers. Glycogen content in all glycolytic muscles (i.e., LM, SM and BFM), was greater in low than high RFI pigs. The greater accumulation of glycogen in LM of low RFI pigs was specifically located in the fast-twitch glycolytic IIBW fibers, which correspond to fibers containing IIb, IIb + IIx, or IIx myosin heavy chains. The difference in muscle glycogen content between RFI line pigs was more significant in the living animals (P = 0.0003) than at 30 min postmortem (P = 0.08). This was associated with a decreased ultimate pH (P = 0.001), and greater lightness of color (P = 0.002) and drip loss (P = 0.04) in LM of low than high RFI line pigs, suggesting that selection for reduced RFI may impair some meat quality traits, such as water-holding capacity. Pigs from the low RFI line exhibited a greater (P = 0.02) percentage of

  1. Environmental Factors Affecting Computer Assisted Language Learning Success: A Complex Dynamic Systems Conceptual Model

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Marek, Michael W.; Wu, Wen-Chi Vivian

    2014-01-01

    This conceptual, interdisciplinary inquiry explores Complex Dynamic Systems as the concept relates to the internal and external environmental factors affecting computer assisted language learning (CALL). Based on the results obtained by de Rosnay ["World Futures: The Journal of General Evolution", 67(4/5), 304-315 (2011)], who observed…

  2. Complex treatment of trophic affections with vascular patients using monochromatic red light and hyperbaric oxygenation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Babkina, Zinaida M.; Vasilyev, Mikhail V.; Zakharov, Vyacheslav P.; Nikolayev, Viktor V.; Babkin, Vasily I.; Samoday, Valery G.; Zon, Boris A.; Pakhomov, Gennady V.; Naskidashvili, Vasily I.; Kumin, Anatoly A.

    1996-11-01

    Monochromatic red light irradiation therapy of trophic skin affections with vascular patients permits to receive positive results with small wounds. A combination of monochromatic red light and hyperbaric oxygenation is most perspective when conducting a complex therapy of trophic wounds not more than 40 mm2 and allows to diminish time of treatment almost two times.

  3. Male Age Affects Female Mate Preference, Quantity of Accessory Gland Proteins, and Sperm Traits and Female Fitness in D. melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Rezaei, Abolhasan; Krishna, Mysore Siddaiah; Santhosh, Hassan T

    2015-01-01

    For species in which mating is resource-independent and offspring do not receive parental care, theoretical models of age-based female mate preference predict that females should prefer to mate with older males as they have demonstrated ability to survive. Thus, females should obtain a fitness benefit from mating with older males. However, male aging is often associated with reductions in quantity of sperm. The adaptive significance of age-based mate choice is therefore unclear. Various hypotheses have made conflicting predictions concerning this issue, because published studies have not investigated the effect of age on accessory gland proteins and sperm traits. D. melanogaster exhibits resource-independent mating, and offspring do not receive parental care, making this an appropriate model for studying age-based mate choice. In the present study, we found that D. melanogaster females of all ages preferred to mate with the younger of two competing males. Young males performed significantly greater courtship attempts and females showed least rejection for the same than middle-aged and old males. Young males had small accessory glands that contained very few main cells that were larger than average. Nevertheless, compared with middle-aged or old males, the young males transferred greater quantities of accessory gland proteins and sperm to mated females. As a result, females that mated with young male produced more eggs and progeny than those that mated with older males. Furthermore, mating with young male reduced female's lifespan. These studies indicate that quantity of accessory gland proteins and sperm traits decreased with male age and females obtain direct fitness benefit from mating with preferred young males.

  4. A trait-based framework for predicting when and where microbial adaptation to climate change will affect ecosystem functioning

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wallenstein, Matthew D.; Hall, Edward K.

    2012-01-01

    As the earth system changes in response to human activities, a critical objective is to predict how biogeochemical process rates (e.g. nitrification, decomposition) and ecosystem function (e.g. net ecosystem productivity) will change under future conditions. A particular challenge is that the microbial communities that drive many of these processes are capable of adapting to environmental change in ways that alter ecosystem functioning. Despite evidence that microbes can adapt to temperature, precipitation regimes, and redox fluctuations, microbial communities are typically not optimally adapted to their local environment. For example, temperature optima for growth and enzyme activity are often greater than in situ temperatures in their environment. Here we discuss fundamental constraints on microbial adaptation and suggest specific environments where microbial adaptation to climate change (or lack thereof) is most likely to alter ecosystem functioning. Our framework is based on two principal assumptions. First, there are fundamental ecological trade-offs in microbial community traits that occur across environmental gradients (in time and space). These trade-offs result in shifting of microbial function (e.g. ability to take up resources at low temperature) in response to adaptation of another trait (e.g. limiting maintenance respiration at high temperature). Second, the mechanism and level of microbial community adaptation to changing environmental parameters is a function of the potential rate of change in community composition relative to the rate of environmental change. Together, this framework provides a basis for developing testable predictions about how the rate and degree of microbial adaptation to climate change will alter biogeochemical processes in aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems across the planet.

  5. Interaction of leaf traits and soil fauna and their role for carbon sequestration in soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frouz, J.

    2012-04-01

    Litter traits are assumed as one of the most important factor true which plants affect biogeochemisty of the stand where they grow including soil formation and nutrient dynamic which affect substantially function of whole ecosystem. Relationships between potential decomposition and leaf litter traits were extensively studied. Despite importance of potential decomposition, we believe that effect of leaf traits on litter quality is more complex: 1) litter potential decomposability affect litter processing by soil fauna and intensity of consequent fragmentation bioturbation and incorporation into soil aggregates. 2) litter, when supplied into soil for longer period of time affect also soil formation and composition of decomposer community which consequently affect dynamic of litter decomposition. In addition interactions between leaf traits and litter trait may nod be also quite complex. We will demonstrate several examples showing that litter with higher potential decomposability may sequeterr more in soil that les decomposable litter because is in larger extend stabilized by soil fauna.

  6. Parasites affect food web structure primarily through increased diversity and complexity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dunne, Jennifer A.; Lafferty, Kevin D.; Dobson, Andrew P.; Hechinger, Ryan F.; Kuris, Armand M.; Martinez, Neo D.; McLaughlin, John P.; Mouritsen, Kim N.; Poulin, Robert; Reise, Karsten; Stouffer, Daniel B.; Thieltges, David W.; Williams, Richard J.; Zander, Claus Dieter

    2013-01-01

    Comparative research on food web structure has revealed generalities in trophic organization, produced simple models, and allowed assessment of robustness to species loss. These studies have mostly focused on free-living species. Recent research has suggested that inclusion of parasites alters structure. We assess whether such changes in network structure result from unique roles and traits of parasites or from changes to diversity and complexity. We analyzed seven highly resolved food webs that include metazoan parasite data. Our analyses show that adding parasites usually increases link density and connectance (simple measures of complexity), particularly when including concomitant links (links from predators to parasites of their prey). However, we clarify prior claims that parasites ‘‘dominate’’ food web links. Although parasites can be involved in a majority of links, in most cases classic predation links outnumber classic parasitism links. Regarding network structure, observed changes in degree distributions, 14 commonly studied metrics, and link probabilities are consistent with scale-dependent changes in structure associated with changes in diversity and complexity. Parasite and free-living species thus have similar effects on these aspects of structure. However, two changes point to unique roles of parasites. First, adding parasites and concomitant links strongly alters the frequency of most motifs of interactions among three taxa, reflecting parasites’ roles as resources for predators of their hosts, driven by trophic intimacy with their hosts. Second, compared to free-living consumers, many parasites’ feeding niches appear broader and less contiguous, which may reflect complex life cycles and small body sizes. This study provides new insights about generic versus unique impacts of parasites on food web structure, extends the generality of food web theory, gives a more rigorous framework for assessing the impact of any species on trophic

  7. Canopy position affects the relationships between leaf respiration and associated traits in a tropical rainforest in Far North Queensland.

    PubMed

    Weerasinghe, Lasantha K; Creek, Danielle; Crous, Kristine Y; Xiang, Shuang; Liddell, Michael J; Turnbull, Matthew H; Atkin, Owen K

    2014-06-01

    We explored the impact of canopy position on leaf respiration (R) and associated traits in tree and shrub species growing in a lowland tropical rainforest in Far North Queensland, Australia. The range of traits quantified included: leaf R in darkness (RD) and in the light (RL; estimated using the Kok method); the temperature (T)-sensitivity of RD; light-saturated photosynthesis (Asat); leaf dry mass per unit area (LMA); and concentrations of leaf nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), soluble sugars and starch. We found that LMA, and area-based N, P, sugars and starch concentrations were all higher in sun-exposed/upper canopy leaves, compared with their shaded/lower canopy and deep-shade/understory counterparts; similarly, area-based rates of RD, RL and Asat (at 28 °C) were all higher in the upper canopy leaves, indicating higher metabolic capacity in the upper canopy. The extent to which light inhibited R did not differ significantly between upper and lower canopy leaves, with the overall average inhibition being 32% across both canopy levels. Log-log RD-Asat relationships differed between upper and lower canopy leaves, with upper canopy leaves exhibiting higher rates of RD for a given Asat (both on an area and mass basis), as well as higher mass-based rates of RD for a given [N] and [P]. Over the 25-45 °C range, the T-sensitivity of RD was similar in upper and lower canopy leaves, with both canopy positions exhibiting Q10 values near 2.0 (i.e., doubling for every 10 °C rise in T) and Tmax values near 60 °C (i.e., T where RD reached maximal values). Thus, while rates of RD at 28 °C decreased with increasing depth in the canopy, the T-dependence of RD remained constant; these findings have important implications for vegetation-climate models that seek to predict carbon fluxes between tropical lowland rainforests and the atmosphere.

  8. SNP-Based QTL Mapping of 15 Complex Traits in Barley under Rain-Fed and Well-Watered Conditions by a Mixed Modeling Approach.

    PubMed

    Mora, Freddy; Quitral, Yerko A; Matus, Ivan; Russell, Joanne; Waugh, Robbie; Del Pozo, Alejandro

    2016-01-01

    This study identified single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers associated with 15 complex traits in a breeding population of barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) consisting of 137 recombinant chromosome substitution lines (RCSL), evaluated under contrasting water availability conditions in the Mediterranean climatic region of central Chile. Given that markers showed a very strong segregation distortion, a quantitative trait locus/loci (QTL) mapping mixed model was used to account for the heterogeneity in genetic relatedness between genotypes. Fifty-seven QTL were detected under rain-fed conditions, which accounted for 5-22% of the phenotypic variation. In full irrigation conditions, 84 SNPs were significantly associated with the traits studied, explaining 5-35% of phenotypic variation. Most of the QTL were co-localized on chromosomes 2H and 3H. Environment-specific genomic regions were detected for 12 of the 15 traits scored. Although most QTL-trait associations were environment and trait specific, some important and stable associations were also detected. In full irrigation conditions, a relatively major genomic region was found underlying hectoliter weight (HW), on chromosome 1H, which explained between 27% (SNP 2711-234) and 35% (SNP 1923-265) of the phenotypic variation. Interestingly, the locus 1923-265 was also detected for grain yield at both environmental conditions, accounting for 9 and 18%, in the rain-fed and irrigation conditions, respectively. Analysis of QTL in this breeding population identified significant genomic regions that can be used for marker-assisted selection (MAS) of barley in areas where drought is a significant constraint. PMID:27446139

  9. SNP-Based QTL Mapping of 15 Complex Traits in Barley under Rain-Fed and Well-Watered Conditions by a Mixed Modeling Approach.

    PubMed

    Mora, Freddy; Quitral, Yerko A; Matus, Ivan; Russell, Joanne; Waugh, Robbie; Del Pozo, Alejandro

    2016-01-01

    This study identified single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers associated with 15 complex traits in a breeding population of barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) consisting of 137 recombinant chromosome substitution lines (RCSL), evaluated under contrasting water availability conditions in the Mediterranean climatic region of central Chile. Given that markers showed a very strong segregation distortion, a quantitative trait locus/loci (QTL) mapping mixed model was used to account for the heterogeneity in genetic relatedness between genotypes. Fifty-seven QTL were detected under rain-fed conditions, which accounted for 5-22% of the phenotypic variation. In full irrigation conditions, 84 SNPs were significantly associated with the traits studied, explaining 5-35% of phenotypic variation. Most of the QTL were co-localized on chromosomes 2H and 3H. Environment-specific genomic regions were detected for 12 of the 15 traits scored. Although most QTL-trait associations were environment and trait specific, some important and stable associations were also detected. In full irrigation conditions, a relatively major genomic region was found underlying hectoliter weight (HW), on chromosome 1H, which explained between 27% (SNP 2711-234) and 35% (SNP 1923-265) of the phenotypic variation. Interestingly, the locus 1923-265 was also detected for grain yield at both environmental conditions, accounting for 9 and 18%, in the rain-fed and irrigation conditions, respectively. Analysis of QTL in this breeding population identified significant genomic regions that can be used for marker-assisted selection (MAS) of barley in areas where drought is a significant constraint.

  10. SNP-Based QTL Mapping of 15 Complex Traits in Barley under Rain-Fed and Well-Watered Conditions by a Mixed Modeling Approach

    PubMed Central

    Mora, Freddy; Quitral, Yerko A.; Matus, Ivan; Russell, Joanne; Waugh, Robbie; del Pozo, Alejandro

    2016-01-01

    This study identified single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers associated with 15 complex traits in a breeding population of barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) consisting of 137 recombinant chromosome substitution lines (RCSL), evaluated under contrasting water availability conditions in the Mediterranean climatic region of central Chile. Given that markers showed a very strong segregation distortion, a quantitative trait locus/loci (QTL) mapping mixed model was used to account for the heterogeneity in genetic relatedness between genotypes. Fifty-seven QTL were detected under rain-fed conditions, which accounted for 5–22% of the phenotypic variation. In full irrigation conditions, 84 SNPs were significantly associated with the traits studied, explaining 5–35% of phenotypic variation. Most of the QTL were co-localized on chromosomes 2H and 3H. Environment-specific genomic regions were detected for 12 of the 15 traits scored. Although most QTL-trait associations were environment and trait specific, some important and stable associations were also detected. In full irrigation conditions, a relatively major genomic region was found underlying hectoliter weight (HW), on chromosome 1H, which explained between 27% (SNP 2711-234) and 35% (SNP 1923-265) of the phenotypic variation. Interestingly, the locus 1923-265 was also detected for grain yield at both environmental conditions, accounting for 9 and 18%, in the rain-fed and irrigation conditions, respectively. Analysis of QTL in this breeding population identified significant genomic regions that can be used for marker-assisted selection (MAS) of barley in areas where drought is a significant constraint. PMID:27446139

  11. Growth performance and reproductive traits at first parity of New Zealand white female rabbits as affected by heat stress and its alleviation under Egyptian conditions.

    PubMed

    Marai, I F; Ayyat, M S; Abd el-Monem, U M

    2001-12-01

    Exposing growing and adult New Zealand White (NZW) female rabbits to severe heat stress (temperature-humidity index = 28.9) during summer adversely affected their growth and reproductive traits. The traits that declined significantly (p < 0.01) were the live body weight, daily weight gain and feed intake of growing rabbits, and the litter size and litter weight at weaning (p < 0.05) and the pre-weaning weight gain of pups (p < 0.01) for adult females. The conception rate declined considerably with heat stress. The declines in the values of the digestibility coefficients due to heat stress were 7.9% (p < 0.05) for dry matter (DM), 8.1% (p < 0.05) for crude protein (CP) and 1.0% for crude fibre (CF). The traits that increased significantly (p < 0.01) due to heat stress were water intake, water/feed ratio and rectal temperature in growing rabbits and pre-weaning mortality for adult females. Alleviation of heat stress in the growing and adult female NZW rabbits was more efficient with drinking cool water (10-15 degrees C; between 10:00 and 17:00) than with supplementation with palm oil (as a source of energy) or natural clay (as a natural enhancer to growth and milk production). Supplying the animals with cool drinking water gave the highest body weight and weight gain, conception rate, litter size and weight and digestibility coefficients for DM and CP and the lowest rectal temperature, respiration rate and pre-weaning mortality. The loss in rabbit production pertaining to heat stress estimated from the percentages of decline in conception rate x pre-weaning mortality x litter weight at weaning was 73.0%. The provision of cool water restored 11/12 of heat loss. PMID:11770200

  12. Challenges in researching violence affecting health service delivery in complex security environments.

    PubMed

    Foghammar, Ludvig; Jang, Suyoun; Kyzy, Gulzhan Asylbek; Weiss, Nerina; Sullivan, Katherine A; Gibson-Fall, Fawzia; Irwin, Rachel

    2016-08-01

    Complex security environments are characterized by violence (including, but not limited to "armed conflict" in the legal sense), poverty, environmental disasters and poor governance. Violence directly affecting health service delivery in complex security environments includes attacks on individuals (e.g. doctors, nurses, administrators, security guards, ambulance drivers and translators), obstructions (e.g. ambulances being stopped at checkpoints), discrimination (e.g. staff being pressured to treat one patient instead of another), attacks on and misappropriation of health facilities and property (e.g. vandalism, theft and ambulance theft by armed groups), and the criminalization of health workers. This paper examines the challenges associated with researching the context, scope and nature of violence directly affecting health service delivery in these environments. With a focus on data collection, it considers how these challenges affect researchers' ability to analyze the drivers of violence and impact of violence. This paper presents key findings from two research workshops organized in 2014 and 2015 which convened researchers and practitioners in the fields of health and humanitarian aid delivery and policy, and draws upon an analysis of organizational efforts to address violence affecting healthcare delivery and eleven in-depth interviews with representatives of organizations working in complex security environments. Despite the urgency and impact of violence affecting healthcare delivery, there is an overall lack of research that is of health-specific, publically accessible and comparable, as well as a lack of gender-disaggregated data, data on perpetrator motives and an assessment of the 'knock-on' effects of violence. These gaps limit analysis and, by extension, the ability of organizations operating in complex security environments to effectively manage the security of their staff and facilities and to deliver health services. Increased research

  13. Challenges in researching violence affecting health service delivery in complex security environments.

    PubMed

    Foghammar, Ludvig; Jang, Suyoun; Kyzy, Gulzhan Asylbek; Weiss, Nerina; Sullivan, Katherine A; Gibson-Fall, Fawzia; Irwin, Rachel

    2016-08-01

    Complex security environments are characterized by violence (including, but not limited to "armed conflict" in the legal sense), poverty, environmental disasters and poor governance. Violence directly affecting health service delivery in complex security environments includes attacks on individuals (e.g. doctors, nurses, administrators, security guards, ambulance drivers and translators), obstructions (e.g. ambulances being stopped at checkpoints), discrimination (e.g. staff being pressured to treat one patient instead of another), attacks on and misappropriation of health facilities and property (e.g. vandalism, theft and ambulance theft by armed groups), and the criminalization of health workers. This paper examines the challenges associated with researching the context, scope and nature of violence directly affecting health service delivery in these environments. With a focus on data collection, it considers how these challenges affect researchers' ability to analyze the drivers of violence and impact of violence. This paper presents key findings from two research workshops organized in 2014 and 2015 which convened researchers and practitioners in the fields of health and humanitarian aid delivery and policy, and draws upon an analysis of organizational efforts to address violence affecting healthcare delivery and eleven in-depth interviews with representatives of organizations working in complex security environments. Despite the urgency and impact of violence affecting healthcare delivery, there is an overall lack of research that is of health-specific, publically accessible and comparable, as well as a lack of gender-disaggregated data, data on perpetrator motives and an assessment of the 'knock-on' effects of violence. These gaps limit analysis and, by extension, the ability of organizations operating in complex security environments to effectively manage the security of their staff and facilities and to deliver health services. Increased research

  14. Bioreduction of Uranium(VI) Complexed with Citric Acid by Clostridia Affects its Structure and Mobility

    SciTech Connect

    Francis, A.; Dodge, C

    2008-01-01

    Uranium contamination of the environment from mining and milling operations, nuclear-waste disposal, and ammunition use is a widespread global problem. Natural attenuation processes such as bacterial reductive precipitation and immobilization of soluble uranium is gaining much attention. However, the presence of naturally occurring organic ligands can affect the precipitation of uranium. Here, we report that the anaerobic spore-forming bacteria Clostridia, ubiquitous in soils, sediments, and wastes, capable of reduction of Fe(III) to Fe(II), Mn(IV) to Mn(II), U(VI) to U(IV), Pu(IV) to Pu(III), and Tc(VI) to Tc(IV); reduced U(VI) associated with citric acid in a dinuclear 2:2 U(VI):citric acid complex to a biligand mononuclear 1:2 U(IV):citric acid complex, which remained in solution, in contrast to reduction and precipitation of uranium. Our findings show that U(VI) complexed with citric acid is readily accessible as an electron acceptor despite the inability of the bacterium to metabolize the complexed organic ligand. Furthermore, it suggests that the presence of organic ligands at uranium-contaminated sites can affect the mobility of the actinide under both oxic and anoxic conditions by forming such soluble complexes.

  15. Mapping small-effect and linked quantitative trait loci for complex traits in backcross or DH populations via a multi-locus GWAS methodology.

    PubMed

    Wang, Shi-Bo; Wen, Yang-Jun; Ren, Wen-Long; Ni, Yuan-Li; Zhang, Jin; Feng, Jian-Ying; Zhang, Yuan-Ming

    2016-01-01

    Composite interval mapping (CIM) is the most widely-used method in linkage analysis. Its main feature is the ability to control genomic background effects via inclusion of co-factors in its genetic model. However, the result often depends on how the co-factors are selected, especially for small-effect and linked quantitative trait loci (QTL). To address this issue, here we proposed a new method under the framework of genome-wide association studies (GWAS). First, a single-locus random-SNP-effect mixed linear model method for GWAS was used to scan each putative QTL on the genome in backcross or doubled haploid populations. Here, controlling background via selecting markers in the CIM was replaced by estimating polygenic variance. Then, all the peaks in the negative logarithm P-value curve were selected as the positions of multiple putative QTL to be included in a multi-locus genetic model, and true QTL were automatically identified by empirical Bayes. This called genome-wide CIM (GCIM). A series of simulated and real datasets was used to validate the new method. As a result, the new method had higher power in QTL detection, greater accuracy in QTL effect estimation, and stronger robustness under various backgrounds as compared with the CIM and empirical Bayes methods.

  16. Mapping small-effect and linked quantitative trait loci for complex traits in backcross or DH populations via a multi-locus GWAS methodology

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Shi-Bo; Wen, Yang-Jun; Ren, Wen-Long; Ni, Yuan-Li; Zhang, Jin; Feng, Jian-Ying; Zhang, Yuan-Ming

    2016-01-01

    Composite interval mapping (CIM) is the most widely-used method in linkage analysis. Its main feature is the ability to control genomic background effects via inclusion of co-factors in its genetic model. However, the result often depends on how the co-factors are selected, especially for small-effect and linked quantitative trait loci (QTL). To address this issue, here we proposed a new method under the framework of genome-wide association studies (GWAS). First, a single-locus random-SNP-effect mixed linear model method for GWAS was used to scan each putative QTL on the genome in backcross or doubled haploid populations. Here, controlling background via selecting markers in the CIM was replaced by estimating polygenic variance. Then, all the peaks in the negative logarithm P-value curve were selected as the positions of multiple putative QTL to be included in a multi-locus genetic model, and true QTL were automatically identified by empirical Bayes. This called genome-wide CIM (GCIM). A series of simulated and real datasets was used to validate the new method. As a result, the new method had higher power in QTL detection, greater accuracy in QTL effect estimation, and stronger robustness under various backgrounds as compared with the CIM and empirical Bayes methods. PMID:27435756

  17. Mapping small-effect and linked quantitative trait loci for complex traits in backcross or DH populations via a multi-locus GWAS methodology.

    PubMed

    Wang, Shi-Bo; Wen, Yang-Jun; Ren, Wen-Long; Ni, Yuan-Li; Zhang, Jin; Feng, Jian-Ying; Zhang, Yuan-Ming

    2016-01-01

    Composite interval mapping (CIM) is the most widely-used method in linkage analysis. Its main feature is the ability to control genomic background effects via inclusion of co-factors in its genetic model. However, the result often depends on how the co-factors are selected, especially for small-effect and linked quantitative trait loci (QTL). To address this issue, here we proposed a new method under the framework of genome-wide association studies (GWAS). First, a single-locus random-SNP-effect mixed linear model method for GWAS was used to scan each putative QTL on the genome in backcross or doubled haploid populations. Here, controlling background via selecting markers in the CIM was replaced by estimating polygenic variance. Then, all the peaks in the negative logarithm P-value curve were selected as the positions of multiple putative QTL to be included in a multi-locus genetic model, and true QTL were automatically identified by empirical Bayes. This called genome-wide CIM (GCIM). A series of simulated and real datasets was used to validate the new method. As a result, the new method had higher power in QTL detection, greater accuracy in QTL effect estimation, and stronger robustness under various backgrounds as compared with the CIM and empirical Bayes methods. PMID:27435756

  18. Elevated air humidity affects hydraulic traits and tree size but not biomass allocation in young silver birches (Betula pendula).

    PubMed

    Sellin, Arne; Rosenvald, Katrin; Õunapuu-Pikas, Eele; Tullus, Arvo; Ostonen, Ivika; Lõhmus, Krista

    2015-01-01

    As changes in air temperature, precipitation, and air humidity are expected in the coming decades, studies on the impact of these environmental shifts on plant growth and functioning are of major importance. Greatly understudied aspects of climate change include consequences of increasing air humidity on forest ecosystems, predicted for high latitudes. The main objective of this study was to find a link between hydraulic acclimation and shifts in trees' resource allocation in silver birch (Betula pendula Roth) in response to elevated air relative humidity (RH). A second question was whether the changes in hydraulic architecture depend on tree size. Two years of application of increased RH decreased the biomass accumulation in birch saplings, but the biomass partitioning among aboveground parts (leaves, branches, and stems) remained unaffected. Increased stem Huber values (xylem cross-sectional area to leaf area ratio) observed in trees under elevated RH did not entail changes in the ratio of non-photosynthetic to photosynthetic tissues. The reduction of stem-wood density is attributable to diminished mechanical load imposed on the stem, since humidified trees had relatively shorter crowns. Growing under higher RH caused hydraulic conductance of the root system (K R) to increase, while K R (expressed per unit leaf area) decreased and leaf hydraulic conductance increased with tree size. Saplings of silver birch acclimate to increasing air humidity by adjusting plant morphology (live crown length, slenderness, specific leaf area, and fine-root traits) and wood density rather than biomass distribution among aboveground organs. The treatment had a significant effect on several hydraulic properties of the trees, while the shifts were largely associated with changes in tree size but not in biomass allocation.

  19. Elevated air humidity affects hydraulic traits and tree size but not biomass allocation in young silver birches (Betula pendula)

    PubMed Central

    Sellin, Arne; Rosenvald, Katrin; Õunapuu-Pikas, Eele; Tullus, Arvo; Ostonen, Ivika; Lõhmus, Krista

    2015-01-01

    As changes in air temperature, precipitation, and air humidity are expected in the coming decades, studies on the impact of these environmental shifts on plant growth and functioning are of major importance. Greatly understudied aspects of climate change include consequences of increasing air humidity on forest ecosystems, predicted for high latitudes. The main objective of this study was to find a link between hydraulic acclimation and shifts in trees’ resource allocation in silver birch (Betula pendula Roth) in response to elevated air relative humidity (RH). A second question was whether the changes in hydraulic architecture depend on tree size. Two years of application of increased RH decreased the biomass accumulation in birch saplings, but the biomass partitioning among aboveground parts (leaves, branches, and stems) remained unaffected. Increased stem Huber values (xylem cross-sectional area to leaf area ratio) observed in trees under elevated RH did not entail changes in the ratio of non-photosynthetic to photosynthetic tissues. The reduction of stem–wood density is attributable to diminished mechanical load imposed on the stem, since humidified trees had relatively shorter crowns. Growing under higher RH caused hydraulic conductance of the root system (KR) to increase, while KR (expressed per unit leaf area) decreased and leaf hydraulic conductance increased with tree size. Saplings of silver birch acclimate to increasing air humidity by adjusting plant morphology (live crown length, slenderness, specific leaf area, and fine-root traits) and wood density rather than biomass distribution among aboveground organs. The treatment had a significant effect on several hydraulic properties of the trees, while the shifts were largely associated with changes in tree size but not in biomass allocation. PMID:26528318

  20. The Complexity of Background Clutter Affects Nectar Bat Use of Flower Odor and Shape Cues.

    PubMed

    Muchhala, Nathan; Serrano, Diana

    2015-01-01

    Given their small size and high metabolism, nectar bats need to be able to quickly locate flowers during foraging bouts. Chiropterophilous plants depend on these bats for their reproduction, thus they also benefit if their flowers can be easily located, and we would expect that floral traits such as odor and shape have evolved to maximize detection by bats. However, relatively little is known about the importance of different floral cues during foraging bouts. In the present study, we undertook a set of flight cage experiments with two species of nectar bats (Anoura caudifer and A. geoffroyi) and artificial flowers to compare the importance of shape and scent cues in locating flowers. In a training phase, a bat was presented an artificial flower with a given shape and scent, whose position was constantly shifted to prevent reliance on spatial memory. In the experimental phase, two flowers were presented, one with the training-flower scent and one with the training-flower shape. For each experimental repetition, we recorded which flower was located first, and then shifted flower positions. Additionally, experiments were repeated in a simple environment, without background clutter, or a complex environment, with a background of leaves and branches. Results demonstrate that bats visit either flower indiscriminately with simple backgrounds, with no significant difference in terms of whether they visit the training-flower odor or training-flower shape first. However, in a complex background olfaction was the most important cue; scented flowers were consistently located first. This suggests that for well-exposed flowers, without obstruction from clutter, vision and/or echolocation are sufficient in locating them. In more complex backgrounds, nectar bats depend more heavily on olfaction during foraging bouts.

  1. The Complexity of Background Clutter Affects Nectar Bat Use of Flower Odor and Shape Cues

    PubMed Central

    Muchhala, Nathan; Serrano, Diana

    2015-01-01

    Given their small size and high metabolism, nectar bats need to be able to quickly locate flowers during foraging bouts. Chiropterophilous plants depend on these bats for their reproduction, thus they also benefit if their flowers can be easily located, and we would expect that floral traits such as odor and shape have evolved to maximize detection by bats. However, relatively little is known about the importance of different floral cues during foraging bouts. In the present study, we undertook a set of flight cage experiments with two species of nectar bats (Anoura caudifer and A. geoffroyi) and artificial flowers to compare the importance of shape and scent cues in locating flowers. In a training phase, a bat was presented an artificial flower with a given shape and scent, whose position was constantly shifted to prevent reliance on spatial memory. In the experimental phase, two flowers were presented, one with the training-flower scent and one with the training-flower shape. For each experimental repetition, we recorded which flower was located first, and then shifted flower positions. Additionally, experiments were repeated in a simple environment, without background clutter, or a complex environment, with a background of leaves and branches. Results demonstrate that bats visit either flower indiscriminately with simple backgrounds, with no significant difference in terms of whether they visit the training-flower odor or training-flower shape first. However, in a complex background olfaction was the most important cue; scented flowers were consistently located first. This suggests that for well-exposed flowers, without obstruction from clutter, vision and/or echolocation are sufficient in locating them. In more complex backgrounds, nectar bats depend more heavily on olfaction during foraging bouts. PMID:26445216

  2. The Complexity of Background Clutter Affects Nectar Bat Use of Flower Odor and Shape Cues.

    PubMed

    Muchhala, Nathan; Serrano, Diana

    2015-01-01

    Given their small size and high metabolism, nectar bats need to be able to quickly locate flowers during foraging bouts. Chiropterophilous plants depend on these bats for their reproduction, thus they also benefit if their flowers can be easily located, and we would expect that floral traits such as odor and shape have evolved to maximize detection by bats. However, relatively little is known about the importance of different floral cues during foraging bouts. In the present study, we undertook a set of flight cage experiments with two species of nectar bats (Anoura caudifer and A. geoffroyi) and artificial flowers to compare the importance of shape and scent cues in locating flowers. In a training phase, a bat was presented an artificial flower with a given shape and scent, whose position was constantly shifted to prevent reliance on spatial memory. In the experimental phase, two flowers were presented, one with the training-flower scent and one with the training-flower shape. For each experimental repetition, we recorded which flower was located first, and then shifted flower positions. Additionally, experiments were repeated in a simple environment, without background clutter, or a complex environment, with a background of leaves and branches. Results demonstrate that bats visit either flower indiscriminately with simple backgrounds, with no significant difference in terms of whether they visit the training-flower odor or training-flower shape first. However, in a complex background olfaction was the most important cue; scented flowers were consistently located first. This suggests that for well-exposed flowers, without obstruction from clutter, vision and/or echolocation are sufficient in locating them. In more complex backgrounds, nectar bats depend more heavily on olfaction during foraging bouts. PMID:26445216

  3. Low spatial frequency filtering modulates early brain processing of affective complex pictures.

    PubMed

    Alorda, Catalina; Serrano-Pedraza, Ignacio; Campos-Bueno, J Javier; Sierra-Vázquez, Vicente; Montoya, Pedro

    2007-11-01

    Recent research on affective processing has suggested that low spatial frequency information of fearful faces provide rapid emotional cues to the amygdala, whereas high spatial frequencies convey fine-grained information to the fusiform gyrus, regardless of emotional expression. In the present experiment, we examined the effects of low (LSF, <15 cycles/image width) and high spatial frequency filtering (HSF, >25 cycles/image width) on brain processing of complex pictures depicting pleasant, unpleasant, and neutral scenes. Event-related potentials (ERP), percentage of recognized stimuli and response times were recorded in 19 healthy volunteers. Behavioral results indicated faster reaction times in response to unpleasant LSF than to unpleasant HSF pictures. Unpleasant LSF pictures and pleasant unfiltered pictures also elicited significant enhancements of P1 amplitudes at occipital electrodes as compared to neutral LSF and unfiltered pictures, respectively; whereas no significant effects of affective modulation were found for HSF pictures. Moreover, mean ERP amplitudes in the time between 200 and 500ms post-stimulus were significantly greater for affective (pleasant and unpleasant) than for neutral unfiltered pictures; whereas no significant affective modulation was found for HSF or LSF pictures at those latencies. The fact that affective LSF pictures elicited an enhancement of brain responses at early, but not at later latencies, suggests the existence of a rapid and preattentive neural mechanism for the processing of motivationally relevant stimuli, which could be driven by LSF cues. Our findings confirm thus previous results showing differences on brain processing of affective LSF and HSF faces, and extend these results to more complex and social affective pictures.

  4. Advancing complex explanatory conceptualizations of daily negative and positive affect: trigger and maintenance coping action patterns.

    PubMed

    Dunkley, David M; Ma, Denise; Lee, Ihno A; Preacher, Kristopher J; Zuroff, David C

    2014-01-01

    The present study addressed a fundamental gap between research and clinical work by advancing complex explanatory conceptualizations of coping action patterns that trigger and maintain daily negative affect and (low) positive affect. One hundred ninety-six community adults completed measures of perfectionism, and then 6 months later completed questionnaires at the end of the day for 14 consecutive days to provide simultaneous assessments of appraisals, coping, and affect across different stressful situations in everyday life. Multilevel structural equation modeling (MSEM) supported complex explanatory conceptualizations that demonstrated (a) disengagement trigger patterns consisting of several distinct appraisals (e.g., event stress) and coping strategies (e.g., avoidant coping) that commonly operate together across many different stressors when the typical individual experiences daily increases in negative affect and drops in positive affect; and (b) disengagement maintenance patterns composed of different appraisal and coping maintenance factors that, in combination, can explain why individuals with higher levels of self-critical perfectionism have persistent daily negative affect and low positive mood 6 months later. In parallel, engagement patterns (triggers and maintenance) composed of distinct appraisals (e.g., perceived social support) and coping strategies (e.g., problem-focused coping) were linked to compensatory experiences of daily positive affect. These findings demonstrate the promise of using daily diary methodologies and MSEM to promote a shared understanding between therapists and clients of trigger and maintenance coping action patterns that explain what precipitates and perpetuates clients' difficulties, which, in turn, can help achieve the 2 overarching therapy goals of reducing clients' distress and bolstering resilience.

  5. Advancing complex explanatory conceptualizations of daily negative and positive affect: trigger and maintenance coping action patterns.

    PubMed

    Dunkley, David M; Ma, Denise; Lee, Ihno A; Preacher, Kristopher J; Zuroff, David C

    2014-01-01

    The present study addressed a fundamental gap between research and clinical work by advancing complex explanatory conceptualizations of coping action patterns that trigger and maintain daily negative affect and (low) positive affect. One hundred ninety-six community adults completed measures of perfectionism, and then 6 months later completed questionnaires at the end of the day for 14 consecutive days to provide simultaneous assessments of appraisals, coping, and affect across different stressful situations in everyday life. Multilevel structural equation modeling (MSEM) supported complex explanatory conceptualizations that demonstrated (a) disengagement trigger patterns consisting of several distinct appraisals (e.g., event stress) and coping strategies (e.g., avoidant coping) that commonly operate together across many different stressors when the typical individual experiences daily increases in negative affect and drops in positive affect; and (b) disengagement maintenance patterns composed of different appraisal and coping maintenance factors that, in combination, can explain why individuals with higher levels of self-critical perfectionism have persistent daily negative affect and low positive mood 6 months later. In parallel, engagement patterns (triggers and maintenance) composed of distinct appraisals (e.g., perceived social support) and coping strategies (e.g., problem-focused coping) were linked to compensatory experiences of daily positive affect. These findings demonstrate the promise of using daily diary methodologies and MSEM to promote a shared understanding between therapists and clients of trigger and maintenance coping action patterns that explain what precipitates and perpetuates clients' difficulties, which, in turn, can help achieve the 2 overarching therapy goals of reducing clients' distress and bolstering resilience. PMID:24447060

  6. Does human migration affect international trade? A complex-network perspective.

    PubMed

    Fagiolo, Giorgio; Mastrorillo, Marina

    2014-01-01

    This paper explores the relationships between international human migration and merchandise trade, using a complex-network approach. We firstly compare the topological structure of worldwide networks of human migration and bilateral trade over the period 1960-2000. Next, we ask whether the position of any pair of countries in the migration network affects their bilateral trade flows. We show that: (i) both weighted and binary versions of the networks of international migration and trade are strongly correlated; (ii) such correlations can be mostly explained by country economic/demographic size and geographical distance; and (iii) pairs of countries that are more central in the international-migration network trade more. Our findings suggest that bilateral trade between any two countries is not only affected by the presence of migrants from either countries but also by their relative embeddedness in the complex web of corridors making up the network of international human migration.

  7. A new broccoli × broccoli immortal mapping population and framework genetic map: tools for breeders and complex trait analysis.

    PubMed

    Walley, Peter Glen; Carder, John; Skipper, Emma; Mathas, Evy; Lynn, James; Pink, David; Buchanan-Wollaston, Vicky

    2012-02-01

    A unique broccoli × broccoli doubled haploid (DH) population has been created from the F(1) of a cross between two DH broccoli lines derived from cultivars Green Duke and Marathon. We genotyped 154 individuals from this population with simple sequence repeat and amplified fragment length polymorphism markers to create a B. oleracea L. var. italica 'intra-crop' specific framework linkage map. The map is composed of nine linkage groups with a total length of 946.7 cM. Previous published B. oleracea maps have been constructed using diverse crosses between morphotypes of B. oleracea; this map therefore represents a useful breeding resource for the dissection of broccoli specific traits. Phenotype data have been collected from the population over five growing seasons; the framework linkage map has been used to locate quantitative trait loci for agronomically important broccoli traits including head weight (saleable yield), head diameter, stalk diameter, weight loss and relative weight loss during storage, as well as traits for broccoli leaf architecture. This population and associated linkage map will aid breeders to directly map agronomically important traits for the improvement of elite broccoli cultivars. PMID:22038485

  8. Gene-environment interplay in Drosophila melanogaster: chronic food deprivation in early life affects adult exploratory and fitness traits.

    PubMed

    Burns, James Geoffrey; Svetec, Nicolas; Rowe, Locke; Mery, Frederic; Dolan, Michael J; Boyce, W Thomas; Sokolowski, Marla B

    2012-10-16

    Early life adversity has known impacts on adult health and behavior, yet little is known about the gene-environment interactions (GEIs) that underlie these consequences. We used the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster to show that chronic early nutritional adversity interacts with rover and sitter allelic variants of foraging (for) to affect adult exploratory behavior, a phenotype that is critical for foraging, and reproductive fitness. Chronic nutritional adversity during adulthood did not affect rover or sitter adult exploratory behavior; however, early nutritional adversity in the larval period increased sitter but not rover adult exploratory behavior. Increasing for gene expression in the mushroom bodies, an important center of integration in the fly brain, changed the amount of exploratory behavior exhibited by sitter adults when they did not experience early nutritional adversity but had no effect in sitters that experienced early nutritional adversity. Manipulation of the larval nutritional environment also affected adult reproductive output of sitters but not rovers, indicating GEIs on fitness itself. The natural for variants are an excellent model to examine how GEIs underlie the biological embedding of early experience.

  9. Identification of Genetic Loci Affecting the Severity of Symptoms of Hirschsprung Disease in Rats Carrying Ednrbsl Mutations by Quantitative Trait Locus Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Torigoe, Daisuke; Lei, Chuzhao; Lan, Xianyong; Chen, Hong; Sasaki, Nobuya; Wang, Jinxi; Agui, Takashi

    2015-01-01

    Hirschsprung’s disease (HSCR) is a congenital disease in neonates characterized by the absence of the enteric ganglia in a variable length of the distal colon. This disease results from multiple genetic interactions that modulate the ability of enteric neural crest cells to populate developing gut. We previously reported that three rat strains with different backgrounds (susceptible AGH-Ednrbsl/sl, resistant F344-Ednrbsl/sl, and LEH-Ednrbsl/sl) but the same null mutation of Ednrb show varying severity degrees of aganglionosis. This finding suggests that strain-specific genetic factors affect the severity of HSCR. Consistent with this finding, a quantitative trait locus (QTL) for the severity of HSCR on chromosome (Chr) 2 was identified using an F2 intercross between AGH and F344 strains. In the present study, we performed QTL analysis using an F2 intercross between the susceptible AGH and resistant LEH strains to identify the modifier/resistant loci for HSCR in Ednrb-deficient rats. A significant locus affecting the severity of HSCR was also detected within the Chr 2 region. These findings strongly suggest that a modifier gene of aganglionosis exists on Chr 2. In addition, two potentially causative SNPs (or mutations) were detected upstream of a known HSCR susceptibility gene, Gdnf. These SNPs were possibly responsible for the varied length of gut affected by aganglionosis. PMID:25790447

  10. Perceived Risk of Predation Affects Reproductive Life-History Traits in Gambusia holbrooki, but Not in Heterandria formosa

    PubMed Central

    Mukherjee, Shomen; Heithaus, Michael R.; Trexler, Joel C.; Ray-Mukherjee, Jayanti; Vaudo, Jeremy

    2014-01-01

    Key to predicting impacts of predation is understanding the mechanisms through which predators impact prey populations. While consumptive effects are well-known, non-consumptive predator effects (risk effects) are increasingly being recognized as important. Studies of risk effects, however, have focused largely on how trade-offs between food and safety affect fitness. Less documented, and appreciated, is the potential for predator presence to directly suppress prey reproduction and affect life-history characteristics. For the first time, we tested the effects of visual predator cues on reproduction of two prey species with different reproductive modes, lecithotrophy (i.e. embryonic development primarily fueled by yolk) and matrotrophy (i.e. energy for embryonic development directly supplied by the mother to the embryo through a vascular connection). Predation risk suppressed reproduction in the lecithotrophic prey (Gambusia holbrokii) but not the matrotroph (Heterandria formosa). Predator stress caused G. holbrooki to reduce clutch size by 43%, and to produce larger and heavier offspring compared to control females. H. formosa, however, did not show any such difference. In G. holbrooki we also found a significantly high percentage (14%) of stillbirths in predator-exposed treatments compared to controls (2%). To the best of our knowledge, this is the first direct empirical evidence of predation stress affecting stillbirths in prey. Our results suggest that matrotrophy, superfetation (clutch overlap), or both decrease the sensitivity of mothers to environmental fluctuation in resource (food) and stress (predation risk) levels compared to lecithotrophy. These mechanisms should be considered both when modeling consequences of perceived risk of predation on prey-predator population dynamics and when seeking to understand the evolution of reproductive modes. PMID:24551171

  11. Water deficit alters differentially metabolic pathways affecting important flavor and quality traits in grape berries of Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay

    PubMed Central

    Deluc, Laurent G; Quilici, David R; Decendit, Alain; Grimplet, Jérôme; Wheatley, Matthew D; Schlauch, Karen A; Mérillon, Jean-Michel; Cushman, John C; Cramer, Grant R

    2009-01-01

    Background Water deficit has significant effects on grape berry composition resulting in improved wine quality by the enhancement of color, flavors, or aromas. While some pathways or enzymes affected by water deficit have been identified, little is known about the global effects of water deficit on grape berry metabolism. Results The effects of long-term, seasonal water deficit on berries of Cabernet Sauvignon, a red-wine grape, and Chardonnay, a white-wine grape were analyzed by integrated transcript and metabolite profiling. Over the course of berry development, the steady-state transcript abundance of approximately 6,000 Unigenes differed significantly between the cultivars and the irrigation treatments. Water deficit most affected the phenylpropanoid, ABA, isoprenoid, carotenoid, amino acid and fatty acid metabolic pathways. Targeted metabolites were profiled to confirm putative changes in specific metabolic pathways. Water deficit activated the expression of numerous transcripts associated with glutamate and proline biosynthesis and some committed steps of the phenylpropanoid pathway that increased anthocyanin concentrations in Cabernet Sauvignon. In Chardonnay, water deficit activated parts of the phenylpropanoid, energy, carotenoid and isoprenoid metabolic pathways that contribute to increased concentrations of antheraxanthin, flavonols and aroma volatiles. Water deficit affected the ABA metabolic pathway in both cultivars. Berry ABA concentrations were highly correlated with 9-cis-epoxycarotenoid dioxygenase (NCED1) transcript abundance, whereas the mRNA expression of other NCED genes and ABA catabolic and glycosylation processes were largely unaffected. Water deficit nearly doubled ABA concentrations within berries of Cabernet Sauvignon, whereas it decreased ABA in Chardonnay at véraison and shortly thereafter. Conclusion The metabolic responses of grapes to water deficit varied with the cultivar and fruit pigmentation. Chardonnay berries, which lack any

  12. Quantitative trait loci for energy balance traits in an advanced intercross line derived from mice divergently selected for heat loss.

    PubMed

    Leamy, Larry J; Elo, Kari; Nielsen, Merlyn K; Thorn, Stephanie R; Valdar, William; Pomp, Daniel

    2014-01-01

    Obesity in human populations, currently a serious health concern, is considered to be the consequence of an energy imbalance in which more energy in calories is consumed than is expended. We used interval mapping techniques to investigate the genetic basis of a number of energy balance traits in an F11 advanced intercross population of mice created from an original intercross of lines selected for increased and decreased heat loss. We uncovered a total of 137 quantitative trait loci (QTLs) for these traits at 41 unique sites on 18 of the 20 chromosomes in the mouse genome, with X-linked QTLs being most prevalent. Two QTLs were found for the selection target of heat loss, one on distal chromosome 1 and another on proximal chromosome 2. The number of QTLs affecting the various traits generally was consistent with previous estimates of heritabilities in the same population, with the most found for two bone mineral traits and the least for feed intake and several body composition traits. QTLs were generally additive in their effects, and some, especially those affecting the body weight traits, were sex-specific. Pleiotropy was extensive within trait groups (body weights, adiposity and organ weight traits, bone traits) and especially between body composition traits adjusted and not adjusted for body weight at sacrifice. Nine QTLs were found for one or more of the adiposity traits, five of which appeared to be unique. The confidence intervals among all QTLs averaged 13.3 Mb, much smaller than usually observed in an F2 cross, and in some cases this allowed us to make reasonable inferences about candidate genes underlying these QTLs. This study combined QTL mapping with genetic parameter analysis in a large segregating population, and has advanced our understanding of the genetic architecture of complex traits related to obesity.

  13. Background complexity affects response of a looming-sensitive neuron to object motion.

    PubMed

    Silva, Ana C; McMillan, Glyn A; Santos, Cristina P; Gray, John R

    2015-01-01

    An increasing number of studies show how stimulus complexity affects the responses of looming-sensitive neurons across multiple animal taxa. Locusts contain a well-described, descending motion-sensitive pathway that is preferentially looming sensitive. However, the lobula giant movement detector/descending contralateral movement detector (LGMD/DCMD) pathway responds to more than simple objects approaching at constant, predictable trajectories. In this study, we presented Locusta migratoria with a series of complex three-dimensional visual stimuli presented while simultaneously recording DCMD activity extracellularly. In addition to a frontal looming stimulus, we used a combination of compound trajectories (nonlooming transitioning to looming) presented at different velocities and onto a simple, scattered, or progressive flow field background. Regardless of stimulus background, DCMD responses to looming were characteristic and related to previously described effects of azimuthal approach angle and velocity of object expansion. However, increasing background complexity caused reduced firing rates, delayed peaks, shorter rise phases, and longer fall phases. DCMD responded to transitions to looming with a characteristic drop in a firing rate that was relatively invariant across most stimulus combinations and occurred regardless of stimulus background. Spike numbers were higher in the presence of the scattered background and reduced in the flow field background. We show that DCMD response time to a transition depends on unique expansion parameters of the moving stimulus irrespective of background complexity. Our results show how background complexity shapes DCMD responses to looming stimuli, which is explained within a behavioral context.

  14. Affective disorders as complex dynamic diseases--a perspective from systems biology.

    PubMed

    Tretter, F; Gebicke-Haerter, P J; an der Heiden, U; Rujescu, D; Mewes, H W; Turck, C W

    2011-05-01

    Understanding mental disorders and their neurobiological basis encompasses the conceptual management of "complexity" and "dynamics". For example, affective disorders exhibit several fluctuating state variables on psychological and biological levels and data collected of these systems levels suggest quasi-chaotic periodicity leading to use concepts and tools of the mathematics of nonlinear dynamic systems. Regarding this, we demonstrate that the concept of "Dynamic Diseases" could be a fruitful way for theory and empirical research in neuropsychiatry. In a first step, as an example, we focus on the analysis of dynamic cortisol regulation that is important for understanding depressive disorders. In this case, our message is that extremely complex phenomena of a disease may be explained as resulting from perplexingly simple nonlinear interactions of a very small number of variables. Additionally, we propose that and how widely used complex circuit diagrams representing the macroanatomic structures and connectivities of the brain involved in major depression or other mental disorders may be "animated" by quantification, even by using expert-based estimations (dummy variables). This method of modeling allows to develop exploratory computer-based numerical models that encompass the option to explore the system by computer simulations (in-silico experiments). Also inter- and intracellular molecular networks involved in affective disorders could be modeled by this procedure. We want to stimulate future research in this theoretical context. PMID:21544742

  15. Anhedonic-like traits and lack of affective deficits in 18-month-old C57BL/6 mice: Implications for modeling elderly depression.

    PubMed

    Malatynska, Ewa; Steinbusch, Harry W M; Redkozubova, Olga; Bolkunov, Alexei; Kubatiev, Aslan; Yeritsyan, Naira B; Vignisse, Julie; Bachurin, Sergei; Strekalova, Tatyana

    2012-08-01

    The prevalence of depression increases with aging. We hypothesized that like humans, old animals exhibit anhedonic-like behavior, along with signs of behavioral despair. In rodents, anhedonia, a reduced sensitivity to reward, which is listed as a core feature of major depression in the DSM-IVR, can be measured by a decrease in intake of and preference for sweet solutions. Here, sucrose intake, forced swimming, immobility in the modified tail suspension test, novelty exploration, grooming, anxiety and locomotor activity were compared in naïve 3- and 18-month-old male C57BL/6 mice. The absolute amounts and the ratio of consumed 1% sucrose solution to water intake was significantly smaller in 18-month-old mice than in 3-month-old mice. The consumption of 5%-sucrose solution requiring high levels of drinking effort, novelty exploration in two setups and grooming behavior in the splash test were reduced in older animals. Analysis of other behaviors suggested that the above-mentioned signs of anhedonic-like traits were unlikely to be attributable to the potential effect of aging on metabolic needs for water, taste perception, motor capabilities or the induction of essential anxiety and neophobia. A 4-week treatment with the antidepressant imipramine (7mg/kg/day) or dimebon, a compound with suggested neuroprotective proneurogenic properties (1mg/kg/day) restored sucrose intake and preference in 18-month-old mice. Meanwhile, young and old mice showed no differences in the parameters of behavioral despair evaluated in the forced swim and modified tail suspension tests. Thus, the behavioral profile of aged mice parallels that of humans with elderly depression, in whom the symptoms of hedonic deficits typically outweigh affective disturbances. The assessment of anhedonic-like traits with the sucrose preference test in 18-month-old mice will be useful in preclinical studies of elderly depression.

  16. Effects of neonatal fluoxetine exposure on behavior across development in rats selectively bred for an infantile affective trait.

    PubMed

    Zimmerberg, Betty; Germeyan, Sierra C

    2015-03-01

    Infants born to women with depressive symptoms are at higher risk for insecure attachment and behavioral problems. Thus current medical practice is to continue psychotropic medication of pregnant women with depression despite concerns about its behavioral teratology. There are few animal studies focused on long-term behavioral effects of prenatal antidepressant exposure; in addition, studies have not looked at individual differences in baseline affective state as a source of response variability. In this study, fluoxetine, a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), was administered to male and female rat pups from postnatal days 2-7 to model exposure to antidepressants in the human third trimester. Four behavioral measures were conducted from the neonatal to adult age periods in Low and High lines selectively bred for their rate of ultrasonic vocalizations after brief maternal separation. Neonatal fluoxetine administration decreased distress calls in both lines, but to a greater extent in High line rats than Low line. Neonatal fluoxetine also impaired motor coordination in neonates. Neonatal fluoxetine administration decreased social behavior in both juvenile and adult subjects. Fluoxetine-related reductions in anxiety behavior were not observed at the two older ages. As expected, High line subjects displayed more anxiety behavior than Low line subjects at all three test ages. These results suggest that there are may be significant behavioral consequences of antidepressant use during late pregnancy on offspring maternal attachment and social behavior, with implications for increased risk of autism spectrum disorders.

  17. Effects of neonatal fluoxetine exposure on behavior across development in rats selectively bred for an infantile affective trait.

    PubMed

    Zimmerberg, Betty; Germeyan, Sierra C

    2015-03-01

    Infants born to women with depressive symptoms are at higher risk for insecure attachment and behavioral problems. Thus current medical practice is to continue psychotropic medication of pregnant women with depression despite concerns about its behavioral teratology. There are few animal studies focused on long-term behavioral effects of prenatal antidepressant exposure; in addition, studies have not looked at individual differences in baseline affective state as a source of response variability. In this study, fluoxetine, a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), was administered to male and female rat pups from postnatal days 2-7 to model exposure to antidepressants in the human third trimester. Four behavioral measures were conducted from the neonatal to adult age periods in Low and High lines selectively bred for their rate of ultrasonic vocalizations after brief maternal separation. Neonatal fluoxetine administration decreased distress calls in both lines, but to a greater extent in High line rats than Low line. Neonatal fluoxetine also impaired motor coordination in neonates. Neonatal fluoxetine administration decreased social behavior in both juvenile and adult subjects. Fluoxetine-related reductions in anxiety behavior were not observed at the two older ages. As expected, High line subjects displayed more anxiety behavior than Low line subjects at all three test ages. These results suggest that there are may be significant behavioral consequences of antidepressant use during late pregnancy on offspring maternal attachment and social behavior, with implications for increased risk of autism spectrum disorders. PMID:25503615

  18. Jury panel member perceptions of interpersonal-affective traits of psychopathy predict support for execution in a capital murder trial simulation.

    PubMed

    Cox, Jennifer; Clark, John C; Edens, John F; Smith, Shannon Toney; Magyar, Melissa S

    2013-01-01

    Recent research with college undergraduate mock jurors suggests that how psychopathic they perceive a criminal defendant to be is a powerful predictor of whether they will support a death verdict in simulated capital murder trials. Perceived affective and interpersonal traits of psychopathy are especially predictive of support for capital punishment, with perceived remorselessness explaining a disproportionate amount of variance in these attitudes. The present study attempted to extend these findings with a more representative sample of community members called for jury duty (N = 304). Jurors reviewed a case vignette based on an actual capital murder trial, provided sentencing verdicts, and rated the defendant on several characteristics historically associated with the construct of psychopathy. Consistent with prior findings, remorselessness predicted death verdicts, as did the affective and interpersonal features of psychopathy - though the latter effect was more pronounced among jurors who were Caucasian and/or who described their political beliefs as moderate rather than conservative or liberal. Results are discussed in terms of the potentially stigmatizing effects of psychopathy evidence in capital cases.

  19. On the use of the transmission disequilibrium test to detect pseudo-autosomal variants affecting traits with sex-limited expression.

    PubMed

    Elansary, Mahmoud; Stinckens, Anneleen; Ahariz, Naima; Cambisano, Nadine; Coppieters, Wouter; Grindflek, Eli; van Son, Maren; Buys, Nadine; Georges, Michel

    2015-08-01

    We herein describe the realization of a genome-wide association study for scrotal hernia and cryptorchidism in Norwegian and Belgian commercial pig populations. We have used the transmission disequilibrium test to avoid spurious associations due to population stratification. By doing so, we obtained genome-wide significant signals for both diseases with SNPs located in the pseudo-autosomal region in the vicinity of the pseudo-autosomal boundary. By further analyzing these signals, we demonstrate that the observed transmission disequilibria are artifactual. We determine that transmission bias at pseudo-autosomal markers will occur (i) when analyzing traits with sex-limited expression and (ii) when the allelic frequencies at the marker locus differ between X and Y chromosomes. We show that the bias is due to the fact that (i) sires will preferentially transmit the allele enriched on the Y (respectively X) chromosome to affected sons (respectively daughters) and (ii) dams will appear to preferentially transmit the allele enriched on the Y (respectively X) to affected sons (respectively daughters), as offspring inheriting the other allele are more likely to be non-informative. We define the conditions to mitigate these issues, namely by (i) extracting information from maternal meiosis only and (ii) ignoring trios for which sire and dam have the same heterozygous genotype. We show that by applying these rules to scrotal hernia and cryptorchidism, the pseudo-autosomal signals disappear, confirming their spurious nature. PMID:25996251

  20. Jury panel member perceptions of interpersonal-affective traits of psychopathy predict support for execution in a capital murder trial simulation.

    PubMed

    Cox, Jennifer; Clark, John C; Edens, John F; Smith, Shannon Toney; Magyar, Melissa S

    2013-01-01

    Recent research with college undergraduate mock jurors suggests that how psychopathic they perceive a criminal defendant to be is a powerful predictor of whether they will support a death verdict in simulated capital murder trials. Perceived affective and interpersonal traits of psychopathy are especially predictive of support for capital punishment, with perceived remorselessness explaining a disproportionate amount of variance in these attitudes. The present study attempted to extend these findings with a more representative sample of community members called for jury duty (N = 304). Jurors reviewed a case vignette based on an actual capital murder trial, provided sentencing verdicts, and rated the defendant on several characteristics historically associated with the construct of psychopathy. Consistent with prior findings, remorselessness predicted death verdicts, as did the affective and interpersonal features of psychopathy - though the latter effect was more pronounced among jurors who were Caucasian and/or who described their political beliefs as moderate rather than conservative or liberal. Results are discussed in terms of the potentially stigmatizing effects of psychopathy evidence in capital cases. PMID:23754472

  1. Does Human Migration Affect International Trade? A Complex-Network Perspective

    PubMed Central

    Fagiolo, Giorgio; Mastrorillo, Marina

    2014-01-01

    This paper explores the relationships between international human migration and merchandise trade using a complex-network approach. We firstly compare the topological structure of worldwide networks of human migration and bilateral trade over the period 1960–2000. Next, we ask whether pairs of countries that are more central in the migration network trade more. We show that: (i) the networks of international migration and trade are strongly correlated, and such correlation can be mostly explained by country economic/demographic size and geographical distance; (ii) centrality in the international-migration network boosts bilateral trade; (iii) intensive forms of country centrality are more trade enhancing than their extensive counterparts. Our findings suggest that bilateral trade between any two countries is not only affected by the presence of migrants from either countries, but also by their relative embeddedness in the complex web of corridors making up the network of international human migration. PMID:24828376

  2. Limited and excess dietary protein during gestation affects growth and compositional traits in gilts and impairs offspring fetal growth.

    PubMed

    Rehfeldt, C; Lang, I S; Görs, S; Hennig, U; Kalbe, C; Stabenow, B; Brüssow, K-P; Pfuhl, R; Bellmann, O; Nürnberg, G; Otten, W; Metges, C C

    2011-02-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate whether dietary protein intake during gestation less than or greater than recommendations affects gilts growth and body composition, gestation outcome, and colostrum composition. German Landrace gilts were fed gestation diets (13.7 MJ of ME/kg) containing a low (n = 18; LP, 6.5% CP), an adequate (n = 20; AP, 12.1%), or a high (n = 16; HP, 30%) protein content corresponding to a protein:carbohydrate ratio of 1:10.4, 1:5, and 1:1.3, respectively, from mating until farrowing. Gilts were inseminated by semen of pure German Landrace boars and induced to farrow at 114 d postcoitum (dpc; Exp. 1). Energy and protein intake during gestation were 33.3, 34.4, and 35.8 MJ of ME/d (P < 0.001) and 160, 328, and 768 g/d, respectively, in LP, AP, and HP gilts (P < 0.001). From insemination to 109 dpc, BW gain was least in LP (42.1 kg), intermediate in HP (63.1 kg), and greatest in AP gilts (68.3 kg), whereas increase of backfat thickness was least in gilts fed the HP diet compared with LP and AP diets (3.8, 5.1, 5.0 mm; P = 0.01). Litter size, % stillborn piglets, and mummies were unaffected (P > 0.28) by the gestation diet. Total litter weight tended to be less in the offspring of LP and HP gilts (14.67, 13.77 vs. 15.96 kg; P = 0.07), and the percentage of male piglets was greater in litters of HP gilts (59.4%; P < 0.01). In piglets originating from LP and HP gilts, individual birth weight was less (1.20, 1.21 vs. 1.40 kg; P = 0.001) and birth weight/crown-rump length ratio was reduced (45.3, 46.4 vs. 50.7 g/cm; P = 0.003). Colostrum fat (7.8, 7.4 vs. 8.1%) and lactose concentrations (2.2, 2.1 vs. 2.6%) tended to be reduced in LP and HP gilts (P = 0.10). In Exp. 2, 28 gilts (LP, 10; AP, 9; HP, 9) were treated as in Exp. 1 but slaughtered at 64 dpc. At 64 dpc, LP gilts were 7% lighter than AP gilts (P = 0.03), whereas HP gilts were similar to AP gilts. Body composition was markedly altered in response to LP and HP feeding with less lean (P

  3. Population admixture: detection by Hardy-Weinberg test and its quantitative effects on linkage-disequilibrium methods for localizing genes underlying complex traits.

    PubMed Central

    Deng, H W; Chen, W M; Recker, R R

    2001-01-01

    In association studies searching for genes underlying complex traits, the results are often inconsistent, and population admixture has been recognized qualitatively as one major potential cause. Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium (HWE) is often employed to test for population admixture; however, its power is generally unknown. Through analytical and simulation approaches, we quantify the power of the HWE test for population admixture and the effects of population admixture on increasing the type I error rate of association studies under various scenarios of population differentiation and admixture. We found that (1) the power of the HWE test for detecting population admixture is usually small; (2) population admixture seriously elevates type I error rate for detecting genes underlying complex traits, the extent of which depends on the degrees of population differentiation and admixture; (3) HWE testing for population admixture should be performed with random samples or only with controls at the candidate genes, or the test can be performed for combined samples of cases and controls at marker loci that are not linked to the disease; (4) testing HWE for population admixture generally reduces false positive association findings of genes underlying complex traits but the effect is small; and (5) with population admixture, a linkage disequilibrium method that employs cases only is more robust and yields many fewer false positive findings than conventional case-control analyses. Therefore, unless random samples are carefully selected from one homogeneous population, admixture is always a legitimate concern for positive findings in association studies except for the analyses that deliberately control population admixture. PMID:11157005

  4. The ASYMMETRIC LEAVES Complex Employs Multiple Modes of Regulation to Affect Adaxial-Abaxial Patterning and Leaf Complexity[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Husbands, Aman Y.; Benkovics, Anna H.; Nogueira, Fabio T.S.; Lodha, Mukesh; Timmermans, Marja C.P.

    2015-01-01

    Flattened leaf architecture is not a default state but depends on positional information to precisely coordinate patterns of cell division in the growing primordium. This information is provided, in part, by the boundary between the adaxial (top) and abaxial (bottom) domains of the leaf, which are specified via an intricate gene regulatory network whose precise circuitry remains poorly defined. Here, we examined the contribution of the ASYMMETRIC LEAVES (AS) pathway to adaxial-abaxial patterning in Arabidopsis thaliana and demonstrate that AS1-AS2 affects this process via multiple, distinct regulatory mechanisms. AS1-AS2 uses Polycomb-dependent and -independent mechanisms to directly repress the abaxial determinants MIR166A, YABBY5, and AUXIN RESPONSE FACTOR3 (ARF3), as well as a nonrepressive mechanism in the regulation of the adaxial determinant TAS3A. These regulatory interactions, together with data from prior studies, lead to a model in which the sequential polarization of determinants, including AS1-AS2, explains the establishment and maintenance of adaxial-abaxial leaf polarity. Moreover, our analyses show that the shared repression of ARF3 by the AS and trans-acting small interfering RNA (ta-siRNA) pathways intersects with additional AS1-AS2 targets to affect multiple nodes in leaf development, impacting polarity as well as leaf complexity. These data illustrate the surprisingly multifaceted contribution of AS1-AS2 to leaf development showing that, in conjunction with the ta-siRNA pathway, AS1-AS2 keeps the Arabidopsis leaf both flat and simple. PMID:26589551

  5. A Dynamic and Complex Network Regulates the Heterosis of Yield-Correlated Traits in Rapeseed (Brassica napus L.)

    PubMed Central

    Zou, Jun; Long, Yan; Meng, Jinling

    2011-01-01

    Although much research has been conducted, the genetic architecture of heterosis remains ambiguous. To unravel the genetic architecture of heterosis, a reconstructed F2 population was produced by random intercross among 202 lines of a double haploid population in rapeseed (Brassica napus L.). Both populations were planted in three environments and 15 yield-correlated traits were measured, and only seed yield and eight yield-correlated traits showed significant mid-parent heterosis, with the mean ranging from 8.7% (branch number) to 31.4% (seed yield). Hundreds of QTL and epistatic interactions were identified for the 15 yield-correlated traits, involving numerous variable loci with moderate effect, genome-wide distribution and obvious hotspots. All kinds of mode-of-inheritance of QTL (additive, A; partial-dominant, PD; full-dominant, D; over-dominant, OD) and epistatic interactions (additive × additive, AA; additive × dominant/dominant × additive, AD/DA; dominant × dominant, DD) were observed and epistasis, especially AA epistasis, seemed to be the major genetic basis of heterosis in rapeseed. Consistent with the low correlation between marker heterozygosity and mid-parent heterosis/hybrid performance, a considerable proportion of dominant and DD epistatic effects were negative, indicating heterozygosity was not always advantageous for heterosis/hybrid performance. The implications of our results on evolution and crop breeding are discussed. PMID:21747942

  6. Multiple Yeast Genes, Including Paf1 Complex Genes, Affect Telomere Length via Telomerase RNA Abundance▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Mozdy, Amy D.; Podell, Elaine R.; Cech, Thomas R.

    2008-01-01

    Twofold reductions in telomerase RNA levels cause telomere shortening in both humans and the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. To test whether multiple genes that affect telomere length act by modulating telomerase RNA abundance, we used real-time reverse transcription-PCR to screen S. cerevisiae deletion strains reported to maintain shorter or longer telomeres to determine the levels of their telomerase RNA (TLC1) abundance. Of 290 strains screened, 5 had increased TLC1 levels; 4 of these maintained longer telomeres. Twenty strains had decreased TLC1 levels; 18 of these are known to maintain shorter telomeres. Four strains with decreased TLC1 RNA levels contained deletions of subunits of Paf1C (polymerase II-associated factor complex). While Paf1C had been implicated in the transcription of both polyadenylated and nonpolyadenylated RNAs, Paf1C had not been associated previously with the noncoding telomerase RNA. In Paf1C mutant strains, TLC1 overexpression partially rescues telomere length and cell growth defects, suggesting that telomerase RNA is a critical direct or indirect Paf1C target. Other factors newly identified as affecting TLC1 RNA levels include cyclin-dependent kinase, the mediator complex, protein phosphatase 2A, and ribosomal proteins L13B and S16A. This report establishes that a subset of telomere length genes act by modulating telomerase RNA abundance. PMID:18411302

  7. The Founder Strains of the Collaborative Cross Express a Complex Combination of Advantageous and Deleterious Traits for Male Reproduction

    PubMed Central

    Odet, Fanny; Pan, Wenqi; Bell, Timothy A.; Goodson, Summer G.; Stevans, Alicia M.; Yun, Zianing; Aylor, David L.; Kao, Chia-Yu; McMillan, Leonard; de Villena, Fernando Pardo-Manuel; O’Brien, Deborah A.

    2015-01-01

    Surveys of inbred strains of mice are standard approaches to determine the heritability and range of phenotypic variation for biomedical traits. In addition, they may lead to the identification of novel phenotypes and models of human disease. Surprisingly, male reproductive phenotypes are among the least-represented traits in the Mouse Phenome Database. Here we report the results of a broad survey of the eight founder inbred strains of both the Collaborative Cross (CC) and the Diversity Outbred populations, two new mouse resources that are being used as platforms for systems genetics and sources of mouse models of human diseases. Our survey includes representatives of the three main subspecies of the house mice and a mix of classical and wild-derived inbred strains. In addition to standard staples of male reproductive phenotyping such as reproductive organ weights, sperm counts, and sperm morphology, our survey includes sperm motility and the first detailed survey of testis histology. As expected for such a broad survey, heritability varies widely among traits. We conclude that although all eight inbred strains are fertile, most display a mix of advantageous and deleterious male reproductive traits. The CAST/EiJ strain is an outlier, with an unusual combination of deleterious male reproductive traits including low sperm counts, high levels of morphologically abnormal sperm, and poor motility. In contrast, sperm from the PWK/PhJ and WSB/EiJ strains had the greatest percentages of normal morphology and vigorous motility. Finally, we report an abnormal testis phenotype that is highly heritable and restricted to the WSB/EiJ strain. This phenotype is characterized by the presence of a large, but variable, number of vacuoles in at least 10% of the seminiferous tubules. The onset of the phenotype between 2 and 3 wk of age is temporally correlated with the formation of the blood-testis barrier. We speculate that this phenotype may play a role in high rates of extinction in

  8. The Founder Strains of the Collaborative Cross Express a Complex Combination of Advantageous and Deleterious Traits for Male Reproduction.

    PubMed

    Odet, Fanny; Pan, Wenqi; Bell, Timothy A; Goodson, Summer G; Stevans, Alicia M; Yun, Zianing; Aylor, David L; Kao, Chia-Yu; McMillan, Leonard; de Villena, Fernando Pardo-Manuel; O'Brien, Deborah A

    2015-12-01

    Surveys of inbred strains of mice are standard approaches to determine the heritability and range of phenotypic variation for biomedical traits. In addition, they may lead to the identification of novel phenotypes and models of human disease. Surprisingly, male reproductive phenotypes are among the least-represented traits in the Mouse Phenome Database. Here we report the results of a broad survey of the eight founder inbred strains of both the Collaborative Cross (CC) and the Diversity Outbred populations, two new mouse resources that are being used as platforms for systems genetics and sources of mouse models of human diseases. Our survey includes representatives of the three main subspecies of the house mice and a mix of classical and wild-derived inbred strains. In addition to standard staples of male reproductive phenotyping such as reproductive organ weights, sperm counts, and sperm morphology, our survey includes sperm motility and the first detailed survey of testis histology. As expected for such a broad survey, heritability varies widely among traits. We conclude that although all eight inbred strains are fertile, most display a mix of advantageous and deleterious male reproductive traits. The CAST/EiJ strain is an outlier, with an unusual combination of deleterious male reproductive traits including low sperm counts, high levels of morphologically abnormal sperm, and poor motility. In contrast, sperm from the PWK/PhJ and WSB/EiJ strains had the greatest percentages of normal morphology and vigorous motility. Finally, we report an abnormal testis phenotype that is highly heritable and restricted to the WSB/EiJ strain. This phenotype is characterized by the presence of a large, but variable, number of vacuoles in at least 10% of the seminiferous tubules. The onset of the phenotype between 2 and 3 wk of age is temporally correlated with the formation of the blood-testis barrier. We speculate that this phenotype may play a role in high rates of extinction in

  9. Diet Complexity and Estrogen Receptor β Status Affect the Composition of the Murine Intestinal Microbiota

    PubMed Central

    Menon, Rani; Watson, Sara E.; Thomas, Laura N.; Allred, Clinton D.; Dabney, Alan; Azcarate-Peril, M. Andrea

    2013-01-01

    Intestinal microbial dysbiosis contributes to the dysmetabolism of luminal factors, including steroid hormones (sterones) that affect the development of chronic gastrointestinal inflammation and the incidence of sterone-responsive cancers of the breast, prostate, and colon. Little is known, however, about the role of specific host sterone nucleoreceptors, including estrogen receptor β (ERβ), in microbiota maintenance. Herein, we test the hypothesis that ERβ status affects microbiota composition and determine if such compositionally distinct microbiota respond differently to changes in diet complexity that favor Proteobacteria enrichment. To this end, conventionally raised female ERβ+/+ and ERβ−/− C57BL/6J mice (mean age of 27 weeks) were initially reared on 8604, a complex diet containing estrogenic isoflavones, and then fed AIN-76, an isoflavone-free semisynthetic diet, for 2 weeks. 16S rRNA gene surveys revealed that the fecal microbiota of 8604-fed mice and AIN-76-fed mice differed, as expected. The relative diversity of Proteobacteria, especially the Alphaproteobacteria and Gammaproteobacteria, increased significantly following the transition to AIN-76. Distinct patterns for beneficial Lactobacillales were exclusive to and highly abundant among 8604-fed mice, whereas several Proteobacteria were exclusive to AIN-76-fed mice. Interestingly, representative orders of the phyla Proteobacteria, Bacteroidetes, and Firmicutes, including the Lactobacillales, also differed as a function of murine ERβ status. Overall, these interactions suggest that sterone nucleoreceptor status and diet complexity may play important roles in microbiota maintenance. Furthermore, we envision that this model for gastrointestinal dysbiosis may be used to identify novel probiotics, prebiotics, nutritional strategies, and pharmaceuticals for the prevention and resolution of Proteobacteria-rich dysbiosis. PMID:23872567

  10. Habitats as complex odour environments: how does plant diversity affect herbivore and parasitoid orientation?

    PubMed

    Wäschke, Nicole; Hardge, Kristin; Hancock, Christine; Hilker, Monika; Obermaier, Elisabeth; Meiners, Torsten

    2014-01-01

    Plant diversity is known to affect success of host location by pest insects, but its effect on olfactory orientation of non-pest insect species has hardly been addressed. First, we tested in laboratory experiments the hypothesis that non-host plants, which increase odour complexity in habitats, affect the host location ability of herbivores and parasitoids. Furthermore, we recorded field data of plant diversity in addition to herbivore and parasitoid abundance at 77 grassland sites in three different regions in Germany in order to elucidate whether our laboratory results reflect the field situation. As a model system we used the herb Plantago lanceolata, the herbivorous weevil Mecinus pascuorum, and its larval parasitoid Mesopolobus incultus. The laboratory bioassays revealed that both the herbivorous weevil and its larval parasitoid can locate their host plant and host via olfactory cues even in the presence of non-host odour. In a newly established two-circle olfactometer, the weeviĺs capability to detect host plant odour was not affected by odours from non-host plants. However, addition of non-host plant odours to host plant odour enhanced the weeviĺs foraging activity. The parasitoid was attracted by a combination of host plant and host volatiles in both the absence and presence of non-host plant volatiles in a Y-tube olfactometer. In dual choice tests the parasitoid preferred the blend of host plant and host volatiles over its combination with non-host plant volatiles. In the field, no indication was found that high plant diversity disturbs host (plant) location by the weevil and its parasitoid. In contrast, plant diversity was positively correlated with weevil abundance, whereas parasitoid abundance was independent of plant diversity. Therefore, we conclude that weevils and parasitoids showed the sensory capacity to successfully cope with complex vegetation odours when searching for hosts. PMID:24416354

  11. Habitats as Complex Odour Environments: How Does Plant Diversity Affect Herbivore and Parasitoid Orientation?

    PubMed Central

    Wäschke, Nicole; Hardge, Kristin; Hancock, Christine; Hilker, Monika; Obermaier, Elisabeth; Meiners, Torsten

    2014-01-01

    Plant diversity is known to affect success of host location by pest insects, but its effect on olfactory orientation of non-pest insect species has hardly been addressed. First, we tested in laboratory experiments the hypothesis that non-host plants, which increase odour complexity in habitats, affect the host location ability of herbivores and parasitoids. Furthermore, we recorded field data of plant diversity in addition to herbivore and parasitoid abundance at 77 grassland sites in three different regions in Germany in order to elucidate whether our laboratory results reflect the field situation. As a model system we used the herb Plantago lanceolata, the herbivorous weevil Mecinus pascuorum, and its larval parasitoid Mesopolobus incultus. The laboratory bioassays revealed that both the herbivorous weevil and its larval parasitoid can locate their host plant and host via olfactory cues even in the presence of non-host odour. In a newly established two-circle olfactometer, the weeviĺs capability to detect host plant odour was not affected by odours from non-host plants. However, addition of non-host plant odours to host plant odour enhanced the weeviĺs foraging activity. The parasitoid was attracted by a combination of host plant and host volatiles in both the absence and presence of non-host plant volatiles in a Y-tube olfactometer. In dual choice tests the parasitoid preferred the blend of host plant and host volatiles over its combination with non-host plant volatiles. In the field, no indication was found that high plant diversity disturbs host (plant) location by the weevil and its parasitoid. In contrast, plant diversity was positively correlated with weevil abundance, whereas parasitoid abundance was independent of plant diversity. Therefore, we conclude that weevils and parasitoids showed the sensory capacity to successfully cope with complex vegetation odours when searching for hosts. PMID:24416354

  12. Enhanced monsoon precipitation and nitrogen deposition affect leaf traits and photosynthesis differently in spring and summer in the desert shrub Larrea tridentata.

    PubMed

    Barker, D H; Vanier, C; Naumburg, E; Charlet, T N; Nielsen, K M; Newingham, B A; Smith, S D

    2006-01-01

    Leaf-level CO2 assimilation (A(area)) can largely be predicted from stomatal conductance (g(s)), leaf morphology (SLA) and nitrogen (N) content (N(area)) in species across biomes and functional groups. The effects of simulated global change scenarios, increased summer monsoon rain (+H2O), N deposition (+N) and the combination (+H2O +N), were hypothesized to affect leaf trait-photosynthesis relationships differently in the short- and long-term for the desert shrub Larrea tridentata. During the spring, +H2O and +H2O +N plants had lower A(area) and g(s), but similar shoot water potential (Psi(shoot)) compared with control and +N plants; differences in A(area) were attributed to lower leaf N(area) and g(s). During the summer, +H2O and +H2O +N plants displayed higher A(area) than control and +N plants, which was attributed to higher Psi(shoot), g(s) and SLA. Throughout the year, A(area) was strongly correlated with g(s) but weakly correlated with leaf N(area) and SLA. We concluded that increased summer monsoon had a stronger effect on the performance of Larrea than increased N deposition. In the short term, the +H2O and +H2O +N treatments were associated with increasing A(area) in summer, but also with low leaf N(area) and lower A(area) in the long term the following spring.

  13. TACC3 protein regulates microtubule nucleation by affecting γ-tubulin ring complexes.

    PubMed

    Singh, Puja; Thomas, Geethu Emily; Gireesh, Koyikulangara K; Manna, Tapas K

    2014-11-14

    Centrosome-mediated microtubule nucleation is essential for spindle assembly during mitosis. Although γ-tubulin complexes have primarily been implicated in the nucleation process, details of the underlying mechanisms remain poorly understood. Here, we demonstrated that a member of the human transforming acidic coiled-coil (TACC) protein family, TACC3, plays a critical role in microtubule nucleation at the centrosome. In mitotic cells, TACC3 knockdown substantially affected the assembly of microtubules in the astral region and impaired microtubule nucleation at the centrosomes. The TACC3 depletion-induced mitotic phenotype was rescued by expression of the TACC3 C terminus predominantly consisting of the TACC domain, suggesting that the TACC domain plays an important role in microtubule assembly. Consistently, experiments with the recombinant TACC domain of TACC3 demonstrated that this domain possesses intrinsic microtubule nucleating activity. Co-immunoprecipitation and sedimentation experiments revealed that TACC3 mediates interactions with proteins of both the γ-tubulin ring complex (γ-TuRC) and the γ-tubulin small complex (γ-TuSC). Interestingly, TACC3 depletion resulted in reduced levels of γ-TuRC and increased levels of γ-TuSC, indicating that the assembly of γ-TuRC from γ-TuSC requires TACC3. Detailed analyses suggested that TACC3 facilitates the association of γ-TuSC-specific proteins with the proteins known to be involved in the assembly of γ-TuRC. Consistent with such a role for TACC3, the suppression of TACC3 disrupted localization of γ-TuRC proteins to the centrosome. Our findings reveal that TACC3 is involved in the regulation of microtubule nucleation at the centrosome and functions in the stabilization of the γ-tubulin ring complex assembly. PMID:25246530

  14. Disentangling the Effects of Colocalizing Genomic Annotations to Functionally Prioritize Non-coding Variants within Complex-Trait Loci.

    PubMed

    Trynka, Gosia; Westra, Harm-Jan; Slowikowski, Kamil; Hu, Xinli; Xu, Han; Stranger, Barbara E; Klein, Robert J; Han, Buhm; Raychaudhuri, Soumya

    2015-07-01

    Identifying genomic annotations that differentiate causal from trait-associated variants is essential to fine mapping disease loci. Although many studies have identified non-coding functional annotations that overlap disease-associated variants, these annotations often colocalize, complicating the ability to use these annotations for fine mapping causal variation. We developed a statistical approach (Genomic Annotation Shifter [GoShifter]) to assess whether enriched annotations are able to prioritize causal variation. GoShifter defines the null distribution of an annotation overlapping an allele by locally shifting annotations; this approach is less sensitive to biases arising from local genomic structure than commonly used enrichment methods that depend on SNP matching. Local shifting also allows GoShifter to identify independent causal effects from colocalizing annotations. Using GoShifter, we confirmed that variants in expression quantitative trail loci drive gene-expression changes though DNase-I hypersensitive sites (DHSs) near transcription start sites and independently through 3' UTR regulation. We also showed that (1) 15%-36% of trait-associated loci map to DHSs independently of other annotations; (2) loci associated with breast cancer and rheumatoid arthritis harbor potentially causal variants near the summits of histone marks rather than full peak bodies; (3) variants associated with height are highly enriched in embryonic stem cell DHSs; and (4) we can effectively prioritize causal variation at specific loci.

  15. Integrating microbial traits into ecosystem models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allison, S. D.

    2012-12-01

    Diverse bacterial and fungal communities control the decomposition of complex organic material, thereby driving important ecosystem functions such as CO2 production and nutrient regeneration. Predicting these functions is challenging because microbial communities and the chemical substrates they metabolize are complex. To address this challenge, I developed a theoretical model of microbial decomposition based on microbial traits involved in substrate degradation, uptake, and growth. The model represents a large number of microbial taxa, each of which possesses a set of trait values drawn at random from empirically-based distributions. The model also includes a large number of chemical substrates that can be degraded by microbial extracellular enzymes and taken up by membrane transporters. Microbes with different trait values for enzyme production and uptake capacity compete for chemical substrates and vary in abundance during model runs. I used the model to predict rates of plant litter decomposition and determine which traits were associated with high microbial abundance under different environmental conditions. The model predicted that optimal traits depend on the level of enzyme production in the whole community, which determines resource availability and decomposition rates. There is also evidence for facilitation and competition among microbial taxa that co-occur on decomposing litter, suggesting that microbial interactions may play a role in determining ecosystem function. These interactions vary with community investment in extracellular enzyme production and the magnitude of tradeoffs affecting biochemical traits such as enzyme kinetic parameters. The model accounted for 69% of the variation in decomposition rates and up to 26% of the variation in enzyme activities in an empirical dataset with 15 types of Hawaiian plant litter. By explicitly representing microbial diversity, trait-based models can predict ecosystem processes based on functional trait

  16. Hydrogeological factors affecting the multiple plumes of chlorinated contaminants in an industrial complex, Wonju, Korea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, J.; Kaown, D.; Lee, H.; Lee, K.

    2010-12-01

    Apparent plume attenuations of multiple chlorinated contaminants such as TCE, carbon tetrachloride, and its daughter products at an industrial complex, Wonju, Korea were examined through various hydraulic tests and six rounds of groundwater quality analyses. Aquifer media properties and hydrogeologic factors affecting the distribution and attenuation of multiple contaminants were investigated and key attributes were evaluated. The study area has vertically heterogeneous properties from top alluvial layer to crystalline rocks while the weathered fractured layer above intact Jurassic biotite granite acts as the main layer for groundwater flow and aqueous phase multiple contaminants migration. Aerial heterogeneity in surface conditions plays an important role for groundwater recharge because the industrial complex is mostly paved by asphalt and concrete. Due to limited recharge area and concentrated precipitation in summer season, seasonal effects of contaminant plume distribution diminish as the distance increase from the area of recharge. This study analyzed how differently the solute and contaminant concentrations response to the seasonal recharge. For the analyses, the study site was divided into three zones and four transects were established. Groundwater and solute mass balances were estimated by computing groundwater and solute mass flux through transects. The effects of groundwater pumping, groundwater flow and contaminant degradation were examined to simulate the solutes and contaminant concentrations. General tendency of the water quality and contaminant concentration were reproducible with the effects of major components such as groundwater recharge, pumping and estimated degradation rate.

  17. The sound of a mobile phone ringing affects the complex reaction time of its owner

    PubMed Central

    Zajdel, Justyna; Zwolińska, Anna; Śmigielski, Janusz; Beling, Piotr; Cegliński, Tomasz; Nowak, Dariusz

    2012-01-01

    Introduction Mobile phone conversation decreases the ability to concentrate and impairs the attention necessary to perform complex activities, such as driving a car. Does the ringing sound of a mobile phone affect the driver's ability to perform complex sensory-motor activities? We compared a subject's reaction time while performing a test either with a mobile phone ringing or without. Material and methods The examination was performed on a PC-based reaction time self-constructed system Reactor. The study group consisted of 42 healthy students. The protocol included instruction, control without phone and a proper session with subject's mobile phone ringing. The terms of the study were standardised. Results There were significant differences (p < 0.001) in reaction time in control (597 ms), mobile (633 ms) and instruction session (673 ms). The differences in female subpopulation were also significant (p < 0.01). Women revealed the longest reaction time in instruction session (707 ms), were significantly quicker in mobile (657 ms, p < 0.01) and in control session (612 ms, p < 0.001). In men, the significant difference was recorded only between instruction (622 ms) and control session (573 ms, p < 0.01). The other differences were not significant (p > 0.08). Men proofed to complete significantly quicker than women in instruction (p < 0.01) and in mobile session (p < 0.05). Differences amongst the genders in control session was not significant (p > 0.05). Conclusions The results obtained proofed the ringing of a phone exerts a significant influence on complex reaction time and quality of performed task. PMID:23185201

  18. Self-Confirmation and Ascertainment of the Candidate Genomic Regions of Complex Trait Loci – A None-Experimental Solution

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Lishi; Jiao, Yan; Wang, Yongjun; Zhang, Mengchen; Gu, Weikuan

    2016-01-01

    Over the past half century, thousands of quantitative trait loci (QTL) have been identified by using animal models and plant populations. However, the none-reliability and imprecision of the genomic regions of these loci have remained the major hurdle for the identification of the causal genes for the correspondent traits. We used a none-experimental strategy of strain number reduction for testing accuracy and ascertainment of the candidate region for QTL. We tested the strategy in over 400 analyses with data from 47 studies. These studies include: 1) studies with recombinant inbred (RI) strains of mice. We first tested two previously mapped QTL with well-defined genomic regions; We then tested additional four studies with known QTL regions; and finally we examined the reliability of QTL in 38 sets of data which are produced from relatively large numbers of RI strains, derived from C57BL/6J (B6) X DBA/2J (D2), known as BXD RI mouse strains; 2) studies with RI strains of rats and plants; and 3) studies using F2 populations in mice, rats and plants. In these cases, our method identified the reliability of mapped QTL and localized the candidate genes into the defined genomic regions. Our data also suggests that LRS score produced by permutation tests does not necessarily confirm the reliability of the QTL. Number of strains are not the reliable indicators for the accuracy of QTL either. Our strategy determines the reliability and accuracy of the genomic region of a QTL without any additional experimental study such as congenic breeding. PMID:27203862

  19. Self-Confirmation and Ascertainment of the Candidate Genomic Regions of Complex Trait Loci - A None-Experimental Solution.

    PubMed

    Wang, Lishi; Jiao, Yan; Wang, Yongjun; Zhang, Mengchen; Gu, Weikuan

    2016-01-01

    Over the past half century, thousands of quantitative trait loci (QTL) have been identified by using animal models and plant populations. However, the none-reliability and imprecision of the genomic regions of these loci have remained the major hurdle for the identification of the causal genes for the correspondent traits. We used a none-experimental strategy of strain number reduction for testing accuracy and ascertainment of the candidate region for QTL. We tested the strategy in over 400 analyses with data from 47 studies. These studies include: 1) studies with recombinant inbred (RI) strains of mice. We first tested two previously mapped QTL with well-defined genomic regions; We then tested additional four studies with known QTL regions; and finally we examined the reliability of QTL in 38 sets of data which are produced from relatively large numbers of RI strains, derived from C57BL/6J (B6) X DBA/2J (D2), known as BXD RI mouse strains; 2) studies with RI strains of rats and plants; and 3) studies using F2 populations in mice, rats and plants. In these cases, our method identified the reliability of mapped QTL and localized the candidate genes into the defined genomic regions. Our data also suggests that LRS score produced by permutation tests does not necessarily confirm the reliability of the QTL. Number of strains are not the reliable indicators for the accuracy of QTL either. Our strategy determines the reliability and accuracy of the genomic region of a QTL without any additional experimental study such as congenic breeding. PMID:27203862

  20. Identification of quantitative trait loci affecting resistance to gastrointestinal parasites in a double backcross population of Red Maasai and Dorper sheep.

    PubMed

    Silva, M V B; Sonstegard, T S; Hanotte, O; Mugambi, J M; Garcia, J F; Nagda, S; Gibson, J P; Iraqi, F A; McClintock, A E; Kemp, S J; Boettcher, P J; Malek, M; Van Tassell, C P; Baker, R L

    2012-02-01

    A genome-wide scan for quantitative trait loci (QTL) affecting gastrointestinal nematode resistance in sheep was completed using a double backcross population derived from Red Maasai and Dorper ewes bred to F(1) rams. This design provided an opportunity to map potentially unique genetic variation associated with a parasite-tolerant breed like Red Maasai, a breed developed to survive East African grazing conditions. Parasite indicator phenotypes (blood packed cell volume - PCV and faecal egg count - FEC) were collected on a weekly basis from 1064 lambs during a single 3-month post-weaning grazing challenge on infected pastures. The averages of last measurements for FEC (AVFEC) and PCV (AVPCV), along with decline in PCV from challenge start to end (PCVD), were used to select lambs (N = 371) for genotyping that represented the tails (10% threshold) of the phenotypic distributions. Marker genotypes for 172 microsatellite loci covering 25 of 26 autosomes (1560.7 cm) were scored and corrected by Genoprob prior to qxpak analysis that included Box-Cox transformed AVFEC and arcsine transformed PCV statistics. Significant QTL for AVFEC and AVPCV were detected on four chromosomes, and this included a novel AVFEC QTL on chromosome 6 that would have remained undetected without Box-Cox transformation methods. The most significant P-values for AVFEC, AVPCV and PCVD overlapped the same marker interval on chromosome 22, suggesting the potential for a single causative mutation, which remains unknown. In all cases, the favourable QTL allele was always contributed from Red Maasai, providing support for the idea that future marker-assisted selection for genetic improvement of production in East Africa will rely on markers in linkage disequilibrium with these QTL.

  1. Interspecific hybridization does not affect the level of fluctuating asymmetry (FA) in the Drosophila bipectinata species complex.

    PubMed

    Banerjee, Parul; Singh, B N

    2015-08-01

    The Drosophila bipectinata species complex comprises of four very closely related species namely D. bipectinata, D. parabipectinata, D. malerkotliana and D. pseudoananassae. It was found that irrespective of the evolutionary divergence among the species, FA which is reflective of the developmental precision remains nearly same in four species. During the present study, the level of FA in different morphological traits was studied in interspecific hybrids and compared with that of parental species with the view that it would throw light on the degree of divergence between the parental species. If they have not diverged much, the interspecific hybrids may have a similar FA level, incompatibilities between their genomes being negligible. On the other hand, if there is substantial divergence, the level of FA may be higher due to incompatibility between the genomes of the parental species. The morphological traits taken were sternopleural bristle number and wing length in both males and females and ovariole number and sex-comb tooth number in females and males respectively. However, except in a few cases, we could not detect any significant differences in the level of FA in hybrids as compared to pure species. On the other hand, a number of abnormalities like poor viability, dystrophied ovaries, asymmetrical eyes etc., could be detected in hybrids from crosses involving D. pseudoananassae as one of the parents. Therefore, we conclude that specific developmental pathways are more susceptible to developmental disturbances due to genomic incompatibilities than the large complex system bringing about developmental stability.

  2. Systems Biology for Smart Crops and Agricultural Innovation: Filling the Gaps between Genotype and Phenotype for Complex Traits Linked with Robust Agricultural Productivity and Sustainability

    PubMed Central

    Pathak, Rajesh Kumar; Gupta, Sanjay Mohan; Gaur, Vikram Singh; Pandey, Dinesh

    2015-01-01

    Abstract In recent years, rapid developments in several omics platforms and next generation sequencing technology have generated a huge amount of biological data about plants. Systems biology aims to develop and use well-organized and efficient algorithms, data structure, visualization, and communication tools for the integration of these biological data with the goal of computational modeling and simulation. It studies crop plant systems by systematically perturbing them, checking the gene, protein, and informational pathway responses; integrating these data; and finally, formulating mathematical models that describe the structure of system and its response to individual perturbations. Consequently, systems biology approaches, such as integrative and predictive ones, hold immense potential in understanding of molecular mechanism of agriculturally important complex traits linked to agricultural productivity. This has led to identification of some key genes and proteins involved in networks of pathways involved in input use efficiency, biotic and abiotic stress resistance, photosynthesis efficiency, root, stem and leaf architecture, and nutrient mobilization. The developments in the above fields have made it possible to design smart crops with superior agronomic traits through genetic manipulation of key candidate genes. PMID:26484978

  3. Systems Biology for Smart Crops and Agricultural Innovation: Filling the Gaps between Genotype and Phenotype for Complex Traits Linked with Robust Agricultural Productivity and Sustainability.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Anil; Pathak, Rajesh Kumar; Gupta, Sanjay Mohan; Gaur, Vikram Singh; Pandey, Dinesh

    2015-10-01

    In recent years, rapid developments in several omics platforms and next generation sequencing technology have generated a huge amount of biological data about plants. Systems biology aims to develop and use well-organized and efficient algorithms, data structure, visualization, and communication tools for the integration of these biological data with the goal of computational modeling and simulation. It studies crop plant systems by systematically perturbing them, checking the gene, protein, and informational pathway responses; integrating these data; and finally, formulating mathematical models that describe the structure of system and its response to individual perturbations. Consequently, systems biology approaches, such as integrative and predictive ones, hold immense potential in understanding of molecular mechanism of agriculturally important complex traits linked to agricultural productivity. This has led to identification of some key genes and proteins involved in networks of pathways involved in input use efficiency, biotic and abiotic stress resistance, photosynthesis efficiency, root, stem and leaf architecture, and nutrient mobilization. The developments in the above fields have made it possible to design smart crops with superior agronomic traits through genetic manipulation of key candidate genes.

  4. Systems Biology for Smart Crops and Agricultural Innovation: Filling the Gaps between Genotype and Phenotype for Complex Traits Linked with Robust Agricultural Productivity and Sustainability.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Anil; Pathak, Rajesh Kumar; Gupta, Sanjay Mohan; Gaur, Vikram Singh; Pandey, Dinesh

    2015-10-01

    In recent years, rapid developments in several omics platforms and next generation sequencing technology have generated a huge amount of biological data about plants. Systems biology aims to develop and use well-organized and efficient algorithms, data structure, visualization, and communication tools for the integration of these biological data with the goal of computational modeling and simulation. It studies crop plant systems by systematically perturbing them, checking the gene, protein, and informational pathway responses; integrating these data; and finally, formulating mathematical models that describe the structure of system and its response to individual perturbations. Consequently, systems biology approaches, such as integrative and predictive ones, hold immense potential in understanding of molecular mechanism of agriculturally important complex traits linked to agricultural productivity. This has led to identification of some key genes and proteins involved in networks of pathways involved in input use efficiency, biotic and abiotic stress resistance, photosynthesis efficiency, root, stem and leaf architecture, and nutrient mobilization. The developments in the above fields have made it possible to design smart crops with superior agronomic traits through genetic manipulation of key candidate genes. PMID:26484978

  5. Complex regional pain syndrome type I affects brain structure in prefrontal and motor cortex.

    PubMed

    Pleger, Burkhard; Draganski, Bogdan; Schwenkreis, Peter; Lenz, Melanie; Nicolas, Volkmar; Maier, Christoph; Tegenthoff, Martin

    2014-01-01

    The complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) is a rare but debilitating pain disorder that mostly occurs after injuries to the upper limb. A number of studies indicated altered brain function in CRPS, whereas possible influences on brain structure remain poorly investigated. We acquired structural magnetic resonance imaging data from CRPS type I patients and applied voxel-by-voxel statistics to compare white and gray matter brain segments of CRPS patients with matched controls. Patients and controls were statistically compared in two different ways: First, we applied a 2-sample ttest to compare whole brain white and gray matter structure between patients and controls. Second, we aimed to assess structural alterations specifically of the primary somatosensory (S1) and motor cortex (M1) contralateral to the CRPS affected side. To this end, MRI scans of patients with left-sided CRPS (and matched controls) were horizontally flipped before preprocessing and region-of-interest-based group comparison. The unpaired ttest of the "non-flipped" data revealed that CRPS patients presented increased gray matter density in the dorsomedial prefrontal cortex. The same test applied to the "flipped" data showed further increases in gray matter density, not in the S1, but in the M1 contralateral to the CRPS-affected limb which were inversely related to decreased white matter density of the internal capsule within the ipsilateral brain hemisphere. The gray-white matter interaction between motor cortex and internal capsule suggests compensatory mechanisms within the central motor system possibly due to motor dysfunction. Altered gray matter structure in dorsomedial prefrontal cortex may occur in response to emotional processes such as pain-related suffering or elevated analgesic top-down control.

  6. Resolving the Effects of Maternal and Offspring Genotype on Dyadic Outcomes in Genome Wide Complex Trait Analysis (“M-GCTA”)

    PubMed Central

    Pourcain, Beate St.; Smith, George Davey; York, Timothy P.; Evans, David M.

    2014-01-01

    Genome wide complex trait analysis (GCTA) is extended to include environmental effects of the maternal genotype on offspring phenotype (“maternal effects”, M-GCTA). The model includes parameters for the direct effects of the offspring genotype, maternal effects and the covariance between direct and maternal effects. Analysis of simulated data, conducted in OpenMx, confirmed that model parameters could be recovered by full information maximum likelihood (FIML) and evaluated the biases that arise in conventional GCTA when indirect genetic effects are ignored. Estimates derived from FIML in OpenMx showed very close agreement to those obtained by restricted maximum likelihood using the published algorithm for GCTA. The method was also applied to illustrative perinatal phenotypes from ∼4,000 mother-offspring pairs from the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children. The relative merits of extended GCTA in contrast to quantitative genetic approaches based on analyzing the phenotypic covariance structure of kinships are considered. PMID:25060210

  7. Affective salience can reverse the effects of stimulus-driven salience on eye movements in complex scenes.

    PubMed

    Niu, Yaqing; Todd, Rebecca M; Anderson, A K

    2012-01-01

    In natural vision both stimulus features and cognitive/affective factors influence an observer's attention. However, the relationship between stimulus-driven ("bottom-up") and cognitive/affective ("top-down") factors remains controversial: Can affective salience counteract strong visual stimulus signals and shift attention allocation irrespective of bottom-up features? Is there any difference between negative and positive scenes in terms of their influence on attention deployment? Here we examined the impact of affective factors on eye movement behavior, to understand the competition between visual stimulus-driven salience and affective salience and how they affect gaze allocation in complex scene viewing. Building on our previous research, we compared predictions generated by a visual salience model with measures indexing participant-identified emotionally meaningful regions of each image. To examine how eye movement behavior differs for negative, positive, and neutral scenes, we examined the influence of affective salience in capturing attention according to emotional valence. Taken together, our results show that affective salience can override stimulus-driven salience and overall emotional valence can determine attention allocation in complex scenes. These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that cognitive/affective factors play a dominant role in active gaze control. PMID:23055990

  8. High-Resolution Genetic Mapping of Complex Traits from a Combined Analysis of F2 and Advanced Intercross Mice

    PubMed Central

    Parker, Clarissa C.; Carbonetto, Peter; Sokoloff, Greta; Park, Yeonhee J.; Abney, Mark; Palmer, Abraham A.

    2014-01-01

    Genetic influences on anxiety disorders are well documented; however, the specific genes underlying these disorders remain largely unknown. To identify quantitative trait loci (QTL) for conditioned fear and open field behavior, we used an F2 intercross (n = 490) and a 34th-generation advanced intercross line (AIL) (n = 687) from the LG/J and SM/J inbred mouse strains. The F2 provided strong support for several QTL, but within wide chromosomal regions. The AIL yielded much narrower QTL, but the results were less statistically significant, despite the larger number of mice. Simultaneous analysis of the F2 and AIL provided strong support for QTL and within much narrower regions. We used a linear mixed-model approach, implemented in the program QTLRel, to correct for possible confounding due to familial relatedness. Because we recorded the full pedigree, we were able to empirically compare two ways of accounting for relatedness: using the pedigree to estimate kinship coefficients and using genetic marker estimates of “realized relatedness.” QTL mapping using the marker-based estimates yielded more support for QTL, but only when we excluded the chromosome being scanned from the marker-based relatedness estimates. We used a forward model selection procedure to assess evidence for multiple QTL on the same chromosome. Overall, we identified 12 significant loci for behaviors in the open field and 12 significant loci for conditioned fear behaviors. Our approach implements multiple advances to integrated analysis of F2 and AILs that provide both power and precision, while maintaining the advantages of using only two inbred strains to map QTL. PMID:25236452

  9. Cross-Tissue and Tissue-Specific eQTLs: Partitioning the Heritability of a Complex Trait

    PubMed Central

    Torres, Jason M.; Gamazon, Eric R.; Parra, Esteban J.; Below, Jennifer E.; Valladares-Salgado, Adan; Wacher, Niels; Cruz, Miguel; Hanis, Craig L.; Cox, Nancy J.

    2014-01-01

    Top signals from genome-wide association studies (GWASs) of type 2 diabetes (T2D) are enriched with expression quantitative trait loci (eQTLs) identified in skeletal muscle and adipose tissue. We therefore hypothesized that such eQTLs might account for a disproportionate share of the heritability estimated from all SNPs interrogated through GWASs. To test this hypothesis, we applied linear mixed models to the Wellcome Trust Case Control Consortium (WTCCC) T2D data set and to data sets representing Mexican Americans from Starr County, TX, and Mexicans from Mexico City. We estimated the proportion of phenotypic variance attributable to the additive effect of all variants interrogated in these GWASs, as well as a much smaller set of variants identified as eQTLs in human adipose tissue, skeletal muscle, and lymphoblastoid cell lines. The narrow-sense heritability explained by all interrogated SNPs in each of these data sets was substantially greater than the heritability accounted for by genome-wide-significant SNPs (∼10%); GWAS SNPs explained over 50% of phenotypic variance in the WTCCC, Starr County, and Mexico City data sets. The estimate of heritability attributable to cross-tissue eQTLs was greater in the WTCCC data set and among lean Hispanics, whereas adipose eQTLs significantly explained heritability among Hispanics with a body mass index ≥ 30. These results support an important role for regulatory variants in the genetic component of T2D susceptibility, particularly for eQTLs that elicit effects across insulin-responsive peripheral tissues. PMID:25439722

  10. Cross-tissue and tissue-specific eQTLs: partitioning the heritability of a complex trait.

    PubMed

    Torres, Jason M; Gamazon, Eric R; Parra, Esteban J; Below, Jennifer E; Valladares-Salgado, Adan; Wacher, Niels; Cruz, Miguel; Hanis, Craig L; Cox, Nancy J

    2014-11-01

    Top signals from genome-wide association studies (GWASs) of type 2 diabetes (T2D) are enriched with expression quantitative trait loci (eQTLs) identified in skeletal muscle and adipose tissue. We therefore hypothesized that such eQTLs might account for a disproportionate share of the heritability estimated from all SNPs interrogated through GWASs. To test this hypothesis, we applied linear mixed models to the Wellcome Trust Case Control Consortium (WTCCC) T2D data set and to data sets representing Mexican Americans from Starr County, TX, and Mexicans from Mexico City. We estimated the proportion of phenotypic variance attributable to the additive effect of all variants interrogated in these GWASs, as well as a much smaller set of variants identified as eQTLs in human adipose tissue, skeletal muscle, and lymphoblastoid cell lines. The narrow-sense heritability explained by all interrogated SNPs in each of these data sets was substantially greater than the heritability accounted for by genome-wide-significant SNPs (∼10%); GWAS SNPs explained over 50% of phenotypic variance in the WTCCC, Starr County, and Mexico City data sets. The estimate of heritability attributable to cross-tissue eQTLs was greater in the WTCCC data set and among lean Hispanics, whereas adipose eQTLs significantly explained heritability among Hispanics with a body mass index ≥ 30. These results support an important role for regulatory variants in the genetic component of T2D susceptibility, particularly for eQTLs that elicit effects across insulin-responsive peripheral tissues. PMID:25439722

  11. Hydrogen peroxide differentially affects activity in the pre-Bötzinger complex and hippocampus

    PubMed Central

    Khan, Shakil A.; Kumar, Ganesh K.; Prabhakar, Nanduri R.; Ramirez, Jan-Marino

    2011-01-01

    Reactive oxygen species (ROS) modulate neuronal excitability. In the present study we examined the effects of hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), a well established ROS, on neuronal activity from two neonatal mouse brain regions, i.e., the pre-Bötzinger complex (preBötC) within the ventral respiratory column (VRC) and the CA1 area of the hippocampus. In the preBötC, 2.2 mM H2O2 evoked a transient depression followed by augmentation of neuronal activity. The iron chelator deferoxamine (500 μM) did not prevent H2O2-mediated neuronal augmentation but prevented the initial depression. Combined application of Fe2+ and H2O2 only caused depression of the preBötC rhythm. In contrast, H2O2 suppressed neuronal activity in the CA1 region, and this effect was accentuated by coapplication of Fe2+ and H2O2, suggesting that hydroxyl radical generated by Fenton reaction mediates the effects of H2O2 on CA1 neuronal activity. Malondialdehyde (MDA) levels were monitored as an index of lipid peroxidation in H2O2-treated preBötC and CA1 areas. MDA levels were unaltered in H2O2-treated preBötC, whereas MDA levels were markedly elevated in the CA1 region. These findings suggest that 1) exogenous administration of H2O2 exerts differential effects on neuronal activities of preBötC versus CA1 neuronal populations and 2) H2O2 is a potent modulator of respiratory rhythmogenesis from the preBötC without affecting global oxidative status. PMID:21849609

  12. Complexities of emotional responses to social and non-social affective stimuli in schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Peterman, Joel S.; Bekele, Esubalew; Bian, Dayi; Sarkar, Nilanjan; Park, Sohee

    2015-01-01

    Background: Adaptive emotional responses are important in interpersonal relationships. We investigated self-reported emotional experience, physiological reactivity, and micro-facial expr