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Sample records for gene transfer tools

  1. An XMRV Derived Retroviral Vector as a Tool for Gene Transfer

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Retroviral vectors are widely used tools for gene delivery and gene therapy. They are useful for gene expression studies and genetic manipulation in vitro and in vivo. Many retroviral vectors are derived from the mouse gammaretrovirus, murine leukemia virus (MLV). These vectors have been widely used in gene therapy clinical trials. XMRV, initially found in prostate cancer tissue, was the first human gammaretrovirus described. Findings We developed a new retroviral vector based on XMRV called pXC. It was developed for gene transfer to human cells and is produced by transient cotransfection of LNCaP cells with pXC and XMRV-packaging plasmids. Conclusions We demonstrated that pXC mediates expression of inserted transgenes in cell lines. This new vector will be a useful tool for gene transfer in human and non-human cell lines, including gene therapy studies. PMID:21651801

  2. Gene Therapy in Fanconi Anemia: A Matter of Time, Safety and Gene Transfer Tool Efficiency.

    PubMed

    Verhoeyen, Els; Roman-Rodriguez, Francisco Jose; Cosset, Francois-Loic; Levy, Camille; Rio, Paula

    2017-01-01

    Fanconi anemia (FA) is a rare genetic syndrome characterized by progressive marrow failure. Gene therapy by infusion of FA-corrected autologous hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) may offer a potential cure since it is a monogenetic disease with mutations in the FANC genes, coding for DNA repair enzymes [1]. However, the collection of hCD34+-cells in FA patients implies particular challenges because of the reduced numbers of progenitor cells present in their bone marrow (BM) [2] or mobilized peripheral blood [3-5]. In addition, the FA genetic defect fragilizes the HSCs [6]. These particular features might explain why the first clinical trials using murine leukemia virus derived retroviral vectors conducted for FA failed to show engraftment of corrected cells. The gene therapy field is now moving towards the use of lentiviral vectors (LVs) evidenced by recent succesful clinical trials for the treatment of patients suffering from adrenoleukodystrophy (ALD) [7], β-thalassemia [8], metachromatic leukodystrophy [9] and Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome [10]. LV trials for X-linked severe combined immunodificiency and Fanconi anemia (FA) defects were recently initiated [11, 12]. Fifteen years of preclinical studies using different FA mouse models and in vitro research allowed us to find the weak points in the in vitro culture and transduction conditions, which most probably led to the initial failure of FA HSC gene therapy. In this review, we will focus on the different obstacles, unique to FA gene therapy, and how they have been overcome through the development of optimized protocols for FA HSC culture and transduction and the engineering of new gene transfer tools for FA HSCs. These combined advances in the field hopefully will allow the correction of the FA hematological defect in the near future. Copyright© Bentham Science Publishers; For any queries, please email at epub@benthamscience.org.

  3. HGT-Finder: A New Tool for Horizontal Gene Transfer Finding and Application to Aspergillus genomes.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Marcus; Ekstrom, Alex; Li, Xueqiong; Yin, Yanbin

    2015-10-09

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is a fast-track mechanism that allows genetically unrelated organisms to exchange genes for rapid environmental adaptation. We developed a new phyletic distribution-based software, HGT-Finder, which implements a novel bioinformatics algorithm to calculate a horizontal transfer index and a probability value for each query gene. Applying this new tool to the Aspergillus fumigatus, Aspergillus flavus, and Aspergillus nidulans genomes, we found 273, 542, and 715 transferred genes (HTGs), respectively. HTGs have shorter length, higher guanine-cytosine (GC) content, and relaxed selection pressure. Metabolic process and secondary metabolism functions are significantly enriched in HTGs. Gene clustering analysis showed that 61%, 41% and 74% of HTGs in the three genomes form physically linked gene clusters (HTGCs). Overlapping manually curated, secondary metabolite gene clusters (SMGCs) with HTGCs found that 9 of the 33 A. fumigatus SMGCs and 31 of the 65 A. nidulans SMGCs share genes with HTGCs, and that HTGs are significantly enriched in SMGCs. Our genome-wide analysis thus presented very strong evidence to support the hypothesis that HGT has played a very critical role in the evolution of SMGCs. The program is freely available at http://cys.bios.niu.edu/HGTFinder/ HGTFinder.tar.gz.

  4. Electro-gene-transfer as a new tool for cancer immunotherapy in animals.

    PubMed

    Impellizeri, J A; Ciliberto, G; Aurisicchio, L

    2014-12-01

    The concept of vaccines based on the direct inoculation of plasmid DNA gained initial proof-of-concept in small rodent species. Further development was hampered by the difficulty to confirm immunogenicity and efficacy in large animal species and, most importantly, in human clinical trials. These negative findings led to the search of complementary technologies which, in combination with intradermal or intramuscular plasmid DNA injection would result in more robust delivery, decreased interindividual variability, clear evidence of clinical efficacy and which would eventually lead to market approval of new vaccine products. The use of high-pressure, needleless devices as an enhancing tool for plasmid DNA delivery led to recent approval by USDA of Oncept™, a therapeutic cancer vaccine directed against tyrosinase for the therapy of melanoma in dogs. An alternative approach to improve plasmid DNA delivery is electro-gene-transfer (EGT). In this article, we briefly review the principles of DNA-EGT and the evidences for efficacy of a telomerase reverse transcriptase vaccine in a dog clinical trial, and provide perspectives for the use of this technology for broader applications in pet animals. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  5. Type IV secretion systems: tools of bacterial horizontal gene transfer and virulence

    PubMed Central

    Juhas, Mario; Crook, Derrick W; Hood, Derek W

    2008-01-01

    Type IV secretion systems (T4SSs) are multisubunit cell-envelope-spanning structures, ancestrally related to bacterial conjugation machines, which transfer proteins and nucleoprotein complexes across membranes. T4SSs mediate horizontal gene transfer, thus contributing to genome plasticity and the evolution of pathogens through dissemination of antibiotic resistance and virulence genes. Moreover, T4SSs are also used for the delivery of bacterial effector proteins across the bacterial membrane and the plasmatic membrane of eukaryotic host cell, thus contributing directly to pathogenicity. T4SSs are usually encoded by multiple genes organized into a single functional unit. Based on a number of features, the organization of genetic determinants, shared homologies and evolutionary relationships, T4SSs have been divided into several groups. Type F and P (type IVA) T4SSs resembling the archetypal VirB/VirD4 system of Agrobacterium tumefaciens are considered to be the paradigm of type IV secretion, while type I (type IVB) T4SSs are found in intracellular bacterial pathogens, Legionella pneumophila and Coxiella burnetii. Several novel T4SSs have been identified recently and their functions await investigation. The most recently described GI type T4SSs play a key role in the horizontal transfer of a wide variety of genomic islands derived from a broad spectrum of bacterial strains. PMID:18549454

  6. RATT: Rapid Annotation Transfer Tool

    PubMed Central

    Otto, Thomas D.; Dillon, Gary P.; Degrave, Wim S.; Berriman, Matthew

    2011-01-01

    Second-generation sequencing technologies have made large-scale sequencing projects commonplace. However, making use of these datasets often requires gene function to be ascribed genome wide. Although tool development has kept pace with the changes in sequence production, for tasks such as mapping, de novo assembly or visualization, genome annotation remains a challenge. We have developed a method to rapidly provide accurate annotation for new genomes using previously annotated genomes as a reference. The method, implemented in a tool called RATT (Rapid Annotation Transfer Tool), transfers annotations from a high-quality reference to a new genome on the basis of conserved synteny. We demonstrate that a Mycobacterium tuberculosis genome or a single 2.5 Mb chromosome from a malaria parasite can be annotated in less than five minutes with only modest computational resources. RATT is available at http://ratt.sourceforge.net. PMID:21306991

  7. HGT-Gen: a tool for generating a phylogenetic tree with horizontal gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Horiike, Tokumasa; Miyata, Daisuke; Tateno, Yoshio; Minai, Ryoichi

    2011-01-01

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is a common event in prokaryotic evolution. Therefore, it is very important to consider HGT in the study of molecular evolution of prokaryotes. This is true also for conducting computer simulations of their molecular phylogeny because HGT is known to be a serious disturbing factor for estimating their correct phylogeny. To the best of our knowledge, no existing computer program has generated a phylogenetic tree with HGT from an original phylogenetic tree. We developed a program called HGT-Gen that generates a phylogenetic tree with HGT on the basis of an original phylogenetic tree of a protein or gene. HGT-Gen converts an operational taxonomic unit or a clade from one place to another in a given phylogenetic tree. We have also devised an algorithm to compute the average length between any pair of branches in the tree. It defines and computes the relative evolutionary time to normalize evolutionary time for each lineage. The algorithm can generate an HGT between a pair of donor and acceptor lineages at the same evolutionary time. HGT-Gen is used with a sequence-generating program to evaluate the influence of HGT on the molecular phylogeny of prokaryotes in a computer simulation study. The database is available for free at http://www.grl.shizuoka.ac.jp/˜thoriike/HGT-Gen.html.

  8. Bicistronic gene transfer tools for delivery of miRNAs and protein coding sequences.

    PubMed

    Stoller, Michelle L; Chang, Henry C; Fekete, Donna M

    2013-09-05

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a category of small RNAs that modulate levels of proteins via post-transcriptional inhibition. Currently, a standard strategy to overexpress miRNAs is as mature miRNA duplexes, although this method is cumbersome if multiple miRNAs need to be delivered. Many of these miRNAs are found within introns and processed through the RNA polymerase II pathway. We have designed a vector to exploit this naturally-occurring intronic pathway to deliver the three members of the sensory-specific miR-183 family from an artificial intron. In one version of the vector, the downstream exon encodes the reporter (GFP) while another version encodes a fusion protein created between the transcription factor Atoh1 and the hemaglutinin epitope, to distinguish it from endogenous Atoh1. In vitro analysis shows that the miRNAs contained within the artificial intron are processed and bind to their targets with specificity. The genes downstream are successfully translated into protein and identifiable through immunofluorescence. More importantly, Atoh1 is proven functional through in vitro assays. These results suggest that this cassette allows expression of miRNAs and proteins simultaneously, which provides the opportunity for joint delivery of specific translational repressors (miRNA) and possibly transcriptional activators (transcription factors). This ability is attractive for future gene therapy use.

  9. Optimizing NTS-Polyplex as a Tool for Gene Transfer to Cultured Dopamine Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Hernandez-Baltazar, Daniel

    2012-01-01

    The study of signal transduction in dopamine (DA)-containing neurons as well as the development of new therapeutic approaches for Parkinson's disease requires the selective expression of transgenes in such neurons. Here we describe optimization of the use of the NTS-polyplex, a gene carrier system taking advantage of neurotensin receptor internalization, to transfect mouse DA neurons in primary culture. The plasmids DsRed2 (4.7 kbp) and VGLUT2-Venus (11 kbp) were used to compare the ability of this carrier system to transfect plasmids of different sizes. We examined the impact of age of the neurons (1, 3, 5 and 8 days after seeding), of culture media used during the transfection (Neurobasal with B27 vs. conditioned medium) and of three molar ratios of plasmid DNA to carrier. While the NTS-polyplex successfully transfected both plasmids in a control N1E-115 cell line, only the pDsRed2 plasmid could be transfected in primary cultured DA neurons. We achieved 20% transfection efficiency of pDsRed2 in DA neurons, with 80% cell viability. The transfection was demonstrated pharmacologically to be dependent on activation of neurotensin receptors and to be selective for DA neurons. The presence of conditioned medium for transfection was found to be required to insure cell viability. Highest transfection efficiency was achieved in the most mature neurons. In contrast, transfection with the VGLUT2-Venus plasmid produced cell damage, most likely due to the high molar ratios required, as evidenced by a 15% cell viability of DA neurons at the three molar ratios tested (1∶36, 1∶39 and 1∶42). We conclude that, when used at molar ratios lower than 1∶33, the NTS-polyplex can selectively transfect mature cultured DA neurons with only low levels of toxicity. Our results provide evidence that the NTS-polyplex has good potential for targeted gene delivery in cultured DA neurons, an in vitro system of great use for the screening of new therapeutic approaches for Parkinson

  10. Regions of Unusual Statistical Properties as Tools in the Search for Horizontally Transferred Genes in Escherichia coli

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Putonti, Catherine; Chumakov, Sergei; Chavez, Arturo; Luo, Yi; Graur, Dan; Fox, George E.; Fofanov, Yuriy

    2006-09-01

    The observed diversity of statistical characteristics along genomic sequences is the result of the influences of a variety of ongoing processes including horizontal gene transfer, gene loss, genome rearrangements, and evolution. The rate at which various processes affect the genome typically varies between different genomic regions. Thus, variations in statistical properties seen in different regions of a genome are often associated with its evolution and functional organization. Analysis of such properties is therefore relevant to many ongoing biomedical research efforts. Similarity Plot or S-plot is a Windows-based application for large-scale comparisons and 2D visualization of similarities between genomic sequences. This application combines two approaches wildly used in genomics: window analysis of statistical characteristics along genomes and dot-plot visual representation. S-plot is effective in detecting highly similar regions between two genomes. Within a single genome, S-plot has the ability to identify highly dissimilar regions displaying unusual compositional properties. The application was used to perform a comparative analysis of 50+ microbial genomes as well as many eukaryote genomes including human, rat, mouse, and drosophila. We illustrate the uses of S-Plot in a comparison involving Escherichia coli K12 and E. coli O157:H7.

  11. Inferring Horizontal Gene Transfer

    PubMed Central

    Lassalle, Florent; Dessimoz, Christophe

    2015-01-01

    Horizontal or Lateral Gene Transfer (HGT or LGT) is the transmission of portions of genomic DNA between organisms through a process decoupled from vertical inheritance. In the presence of HGT events, different fragments of the genome are the result of different evolutionary histories. This can therefore complicate the investigations of evolutionary relatedness of lineages and species. Also, as HGT can bring into genomes radically different genotypes from distant lineages, or even new genes bearing new functions, it is a major source of phenotypic innovation and a mechanism of niche adaptation. For example, of particular relevance to human health is the lateral transfer of antibiotic resistance and pathogenicity determinants, leading to the emergence of pathogenic lineages [1]. Computational identification of HGT events relies upon the investigation of sequence composition or evolutionary history of genes. Sequence composition-based ("parametric") methods search for deviations from the genomic average, whereas evolutionary history-based ("phylogenetic") approaches identify genes whose evolutionary history significantly differs from that of the host species. The evaluation and benchmarking of HGT inference methods typically rely upon simulated genomes, for which the true history is known. On real data, different methods tend to infer different HGT events, and as a result it can be difficult to ascertain all but simple and clear-cut HGT events. PMID:26020646

  12. Evolutionary genomics: transdomain gene transfers.

    PubMed

    Bordenstein, Seth R

    2007-11-06

    Biologists have until now conceded that bacterial gene transfer to multicellular animals is relatively uncommon in Nature. A new study showing promiscuous insertions of bacterial endosymbiont genes into invertebrate genomes ushers in a shift in this paradigm.

  13. New tools in regenerative medicine: gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Muñoz Ruiz, Miguel; Regueiro, José R

    2012-01-01

    Gene therapy aims to transfer genetic material into cells to provide them with new functions. A gene transfer agent has to be safe, capable of expressing the desired gene for a sustained period of time in a sufficiently large population of cells to produce a biological effect. Identifying a gene transfer tool that meets all of these criteria has proven to be a difficult objective. Viral and nonviral vectors, in vivo, ex vivo and in situ strategies co-exist at present, although ex vivo lenti-or retroviral vectors are presently the most popular.Natural stem cells (from embryonic, hematopoietic, mesenchymal, or adult tissues) or induced progenitor stem (iPS) cells can be modified by gene therapy for use in regenerative medicine. Among them, hematopoietic stem cells have shown clear clinical benefit, but iPS cells hold humongous potential with no ethical concerns.

  14. Lateral gene transfer, rearrangement, reconciliation

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Models of ancestral gene order reconstruction have progressively integrated different evolutionary patterns and processes such as unequal gene content, gene duplications, and implicitly sequence evolution via reconciled gene trees. These models have so far ignored lateral gene transfer, even though in unicellular organisms it can have an important confounding effect, and can be a rich source of information on the function of genes through the detection of transfers of clusters of genes. Result We report an algorithm together with its implementation, DeCoLT, that reconstructs ancestral genome organization based on reconciled gene trees which summarize information on sequence evolution, gene origination, duplication, loss, and lateral transfer. DeCoLT optimizes in polynomial time on the number of rearrangements, computed as the number of gains and breakages of adjacencies between pairs of genes. We apply DeCoLT to 1099 gene families from 36 cyanobacteria genomes. Conclusion DeCoLT is able to reconstruct adjacencies in 35 ancestral bacterial genomes with a thousand gene families in a few hours, and detects clusters of co-transferred genes. DeCoLT may also be used with any relationship between genes instead of adjacencies, to reconstruct ancestral interactions, functions or complexes. Availability http://pbil.univ-lyon1.fr/software/DeCoLT/ PMID:24564205

  15. Development of molecular tools to monitor conjugative transfer in rhizobia.

    PubMed

    Tejerizo, Gonzalo Torres; Bañuelos, Luis Alfredo; Cervantes, Laura; Gaytán, Paul; Pistorio, Mariano; Romero, David; Brom, Susana

    2015-10-01

    Evolution of bacterial populations has been extensively driven by horizontal transfer events. Conjugative plasmid transfer is considered the principal contributor to gene exchange among bacteria. Several conjugative and mobilizable plasmids have been identified in rhizobia, and two major molecular mechanisms that regulate their transfer have been described, under laboratory conditions. The knowledge of rhizobial plasmid transfer regulation in natural environments is very poor. In this work we developed molecular tools to easily monitor the conjugative plasmid transfer in rhizobia by flow cytometry (FC) or microscopy. 24 cassettes were constructed by combining a variety of promotors, fluorescent proteins and antibiotic resistance genes, and used to tag plasmids and chromosome of donor strains. We were able to detect plasmid transfer after conversion of non-fluorescent recipients into fluorescent transconjugants. Flow cytometry (FC) was optimized to count donor, recipient and transconjugant strains to determine conjugative transfer frequencies. Results were similar, when determined either by FC or by viable counts. Our constructions also allowed the visualization of transconjugants in crosses performed on bean roots. The tools presented here may also be used for other purposes, such as analysis of transcriptional fusions or single-cell tagging. Application of the system will allow the survey of how different environmental conditions or other regulators modulate plasmid transfer in rhizobia. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Panspermia and horizontal gene transfer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klyce, Brig

    2009-08-01

    Evidence that extremophiles are hardy and ubiquitous is helping to make panspermia a respectable theory. But even if life on Earth originally came from space, biologists assume that the subsequent evolution of life is still governed by the darwinian paradigm. In this review we show how panspermia could amend darwinism and point to a cosmic source for, not only extremophiles but, all of life. This version of panspermia can be called "strong panspermia." To support this theory we will discuss recent evidence pertaining to horizontal gene transfer, viruses, genes apparently older than the Earthly evolution of the features they encode, and primate-specific genes without identifiable precursors.

  17. Perinatal Gene Transfer to the Liver

    PubMed Central

    McKay, Tristan R; Rahim, Ahad A; Buckley, Suzanne M.K; Ward, Natalie J; Chan, Jerry K.Y; Howe, Steven J; Waddington, Simon N

    2011-01-01

    The liver acts as a host to many functions hence raising the possibility that any one may be compromised by a single gene defect. Inherited or de novo mutations in these genes may result in relatively mild diseases or be so devastating that death within the first weeks or months of life is inevitable. Some diseases can be managed using conventional medicines whereas others are, as yet, untreatable. In this review we consider the application of early intervention gene therapy in neonatal and fetal preclinical studies. We appraise the tools of this technology, including lentivirus, adenovirus and adeno-associated virus (AAV)-based vectors. We highlight the application of these for a range of diseases including hemophilia, urea cycle disorders such as ornithine transcarbamylase deficiency, organic acidemias, lysosomal storage diseases including mucopolysaccharidoses, glycogen storage diseases and bile metabolism. We conclude by assessing the advantages and disadvantages associated with fetal and neonatal liver gene transfer. PMID:21774770

  18. Horizontal gene transfer in chromalveolates

    PubMed Central

    Nosenko, Tetyana; Bhattacharya, Debashish

    2007-01-01

    Background Horizontal gene transfer (HGT), the non-genealogical transfer of genetic material between different organisms, is considered a potentially important mechanism of genome evolution in eukaryotes. Using phylogenomic analyses of expressed sequence tag (EST) data generated from a clonal cell line of a free living dinoflagellate alga Karenia brevis, we investigated the impact of HGT on genome evolution in unicellular chromalveolate protists. Results We identified 16 proteins that have originated in chromalveolates through ancient HGTs before the divergence of the genera Karenia and Karlodinium and one protein that was derived through a more recent HGT. Detailed analysis of the phylogeny and distribution of identified proteins demonstrates that eight have resulted from independent HGTs in several eukaryotic lineages. Conclusion Recurring intra- and interdomain gene exchange provides an important source of genetic novelty not only in parasitic taxa as previously demonstrated but as we show here, also in free-living protists. Investigating the tempo and mode of evolution of horizontally transferred genes in protists will therefore advance our understanding of mechanisms of adaptation in eukaryotes. PMID:17894863

  19. Immunology of neonatal gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Ponder, Katherine P

    2007-10-01

    Gene therapy could result in the permanent correction or amelioration of the clinical manifestations of many genetic diseases. However, immune responses to the therapeutic protein pose a significant hurdle for successful gene therapy. Problematic immune responses can include the development of a cytotoxic T lymphocyte (CTL) response that results in the destruction of genetically-modified cells and/or the formation of antibodies directed against the therapeutic protein. One approach to avoid an immune response is to perform gene therapy in newborns, which takes advantage of the fact that the immune system is relatively immature at birth. This approach has been highly effective in mice, and has resulted in stable expression without antibody formation for proteins that are highly immunogenic after transfer to adults. High levels of expression after neonatal gene therapy were more effective at inducing tolerance than low levels of expression in mice, which suggests that high antigen levels are more efficient at inducing tolerance. A criticism of this approach is that the murine immune system is less mature at birth than the immune systems of larger animals. Indeed, neonatal gene therapy to cats with mucopolysaccharidosis I resulted in a CTL response that destroyed expressing cells. Nevertheless, the immune system was still relatively immature, as transient administration of a single immunosuppressive agent at the time of neonatal gene therapy resulted in stable expression. Neonatal administration can reduce, but not eliminate, immune responses after gene therapy.

  20. Methods for Gene Transfer to the Central Nervous System

    PubMed Central

    Kantor, Boris; Bailey, Rachel M.; Wimberly, Keon; Kalburgi, Sahana N.; Gray, Steven J.

    2015-01-01

    Gene transfer is an increasingly utilized approach for research and clinical applications involving the central nervous system (CNS). Vectors for gene transfer can be as simple as an unmodified plasmid, but more commonly involve complex modifications to viruses to make them suitable gene delivery vehicles. This chapter will explain how tools for CNS gene transfer have been derived from naturally occurring viruses. The current capabilities of plasmid, retroviral, adeno-associated virus, adenovirus, and herpes simplex virus vectors for CNS gene delivery will be described. These include both focal and global CNS gene transfer strategies, with short- or long-term gene expression. As is described in this chapter, an important aspect of any vector is the cis-acting regulatory elements incorporated into the vector genome that control when, where, and how the transgene is expressed. PMID:25311922

  1. Gene transfer to the cerebellum.

    PubMed

    Louboutin, Jean-Pierre; Reyes, Beverly A S; Van Bockstaele, Elisabeth J; Strayer, David S

    2010-12-01

    There are several diseases for which gene transfer therapy to the cerebellum might be practicable. In these studies, we used recombinant Tag-deleted SV40-derived vectors (rSV40s) to study gene delivery targeting the cerebellum. These vectors transduce neurons and microglia very effectively in vitro and in vivo, and so we tested them to evaluate gene transfer to the cerebellum in vivo. Using a rSV40 vector carrying human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-Nef with a C-terminal FLAG epitope, we characterized the distribution, duration, and cell types transduced. Rats received test and control vectors by stereotaxic injection into the cerebellum. Transgene expression was assessed 1, 2, and 4 weeks later by immunostaining of serial brain sections. FLAG epitope-expressing cells were seen, at all times after vector administration, principally detected in the Purkinje cells of the cerebellum, identified as immunopositive for calbindin. Occasional microglial cells were tranduced; transgene expression was not detected in astrocytes or oligodendrocytes. No inflammatory or other reaction was detected at any time. Thus, SV40-derived vectors can deliver effective, safe, and durable transgene expression to the cerebellum.

  2. Introductory Tools for Radiative Transfer Models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feldman, D.; Kuai, L.; Natraj, V.; Yung, Y.

    2006-12-01

    Satellite data are currently so voluminous that, despite their unprecedented quality and potential for scientific application, only a small fraction is analyzed due to two factors: researchers' computational constraints and a relatively small number of researchers actively utilizing the data. Ultimately it is hoped that the terabytes of unanalyzed data being archived can receive scientific scrutiny but this will require a popularization of the methods associated with the analysis. Since a large portion of complexity is associated with the proper implementation of the radiative transfer model, it is reasonable and appropriate to make the model as accessible as possible to general audiences. Unfortunately, the algorithmic and conceptual details that are necessary for state-of-the-art analysis also tend to frustrate the accessibility for those new to remote sensing. Several efforts have been made to have web- based radiative transfer calculations, and these are useful for limited calculations, but analysis of more than a few spectra requires the utilization of home- or server-based computing resources. We present a system that is designed to allow for easier access to radiative transfer models with implementation on a home computing platform in the hopes that this system can be utilized in and expanded upon in advanced high school and introductory college settings. This learning-by-doing process is aided through the use of several powerful tools. The first is a wikipedia-style introduction to the salient features of radiative transfer that references the seminal works in the field and refers to more complicated calculations and algorithms sparingly5. The second feature is a technical forum, commonly referred to as a tiki-wiki, that addresses technical and conceptual questions through public postings, private messages, and a ranked searching routine. Together, these tools may be able to facilitate greater interest in the field of remote sensing.

  3. Reducible cationic lipids for gene transfer.

    PubMed Central

    Wetzer, B; Byk, G; Frederic, M; Airiau, M; Blanche, F; Pitard, B; Scherman, D

    2001-01-01

    One of the main challenges of gene therapy remains the increase of gene delivery into eukaryotic cells. We tested whether intracellular DNA release, an essential step for gene transfer, could be facilitated by using reducible cationic DNA-delivery vectors. For this purpose, plasmid DNA was complexed with cationic lipids bearing a disulphide bond. This reduction-sensitive linker is expected to be reduced and cleaved in the reducing milieu of the cytoplasm, thus potentially improving DNA release and consequently transfection. The DNA--disulphide-lipid complexation was monitored by ethidium bromide exclusion, and the size of complexes was determined by dynamic light scattering. It was found that the reduction kinetics of disulphide groups in DNA--lipid complexes depended on the position of the disulphide linker within the lipid molecule. Furthermore, the internal structure of DNA--lipid particles was examined by small-angle X-ray scattering before and after lipid reduction. DNA release from lipid complexes was observed after the reduction of disulphide bonds of several lipids. Cell-transfection experiments suggested that complexes formed with selected reducible lipids resulted in up to 1000-fold higher reporter-gene activity, when compared with their analogues without disulphide bonds. In conclusion, reduction-sensitive groups introduced into cationic lipid backbones potentially allow enhanced DNA release from DNA--lipid complexes after intracellular reduction and represent a tool for improved vectorization. PMID:11389682

  4. Reducible cationic lipids for gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Wetzer, B; Byk, G; Frederic, M; Airiau, M; Blanche, F; Pitard, B; Scherman, D

    2001-06-15

    One of the main challenges of gene therapy remains the increase of gene delivery into eukaryotic cells. We tested whether intracellular DNA release, an essential step for gene transfer, could be facilitated by using reducible cationic DNA-delivery vectors. For this purpose, plasmid DNA was complexed with cationic lipids bearing a disulphide bond. This reduction-sensitive linker is expected to be reduced and cleaved in the reducing milieu of the cytoplasm, thus potentially improving DNA release and consequently transfection. The DNA--disulphide-lipid complexation was monitored by ethidium bromide exclusion, and the size of complexes was determined by dynamic light scattering. It was found that the reduction kinetics of disulphide groups in DNA--lipid complexes depended on the position of the disulphide linker within the lipid molecule. Furthermore, the internal structure of DNA--lipid particles was examined by small-angle X-ray scattering before and after lipid reduction. DNA release from lipid complexes was observed after the reduction of disulphide bonds of several lipids. Cell-transfection experiments suggested that complexes formed with selected reducible lipids resulted in up to 1000-fold higher reporter-gene activity, when compared with their analogues without disulphide bonds. In conclusion, reduction-sensitive groups introduced into cationic lipid backbones potentially allow enhanced DNA release from DNA--lipid complexes after intracellular reduction and represent a tool for improved vectorization.

  5. Targeting Radiotherapy to Cancer by Gene Transfer

    PubMed Central

    2003-01-01

    Targeted radionuclide therapy is an alternative method of radiation treatment which uses a tumor-seeking agent carrying a radioactive atom to deposits of tumor, wherever in the body they may be located. Recent experimental data signifies promise for the amalgamation of gene transfer with radionuclide targeting. This review encompasses aspects of the integration of gene manipulation and targeted radiotherapy, highlighting the possibilities of gene transfer to assist the targeting of cancer with low molecular weight radiopharmaceuticals. PMID:12721515

  6. Lateral Gene Transfer from the Dead

    PubMed Central

    Szöllősi, Gergely J.; Tannier, Eric; Lartillot, Nicolas; Daubin, Vincent

    2013-01-01

    In phylogenetic studies, the evolution of molecular sequences is assumed to have taken place along the phylogeny traced by the ancestors of extant species. In the presence of lateral gene transfer, however, this may not be the case, because the species lineage from which a gene was transferred may have gone extinct or not have been sampled. Because it is not feasible to specify or reconstruct the complete phylogeny of all species, we must describe the evolution of genes outside the represented phylogeny by modeling the speciation dynamics that gave rise to the complete phylogeny. We demonstrate that if the number of sampled species is small compared with the total number of existing species, the overwhelming majority of gene transfers involve speciation to and evolution along extinct or unsampled lineages. We show that the evolution of genes along extinct or unsampled lineages can to good approximation be treated as those of independently evolving lineages described by a few global parameters. Using this result, we derive an algorithm to calculate the probability of a gene tree and recover the maximum-likelihood reconciliation given the phylogeny of the sampled species. Examining 473 near-universal gene families from 36 cyanobacteria, we find that nearly a third of transfer events (28%) appear to have topological signatures of evolution along extinct species, but only approximately 6% of transfers trace their ancestry to before the common ancestor of the sampled cyanobacteria. [Gene tree reconciliation; lateral gene transfer; macroevolution; phylogeny.] PMID:23355531

  7. Biased gene transfer in microbial evolution.

    PubMed

    Andam, Cheryl P; Gogarten, J Peter

    2011-06-13

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is an important evolutionary process that allows the spread of innovations between distantly related organisms. We present evidence that prokaryotes (bacteria and archaea) are more likely to transfer genetic material with their close relatives than with distantly related lineages. This bias in transfer partners can create phylogenetic signals that are difficult to distinguish from the signal created through shared ancestry. Preferences for transfer partners can be revealed by studying the distribution patterns of divergent genes with identical functions. In many respects, these genes are similar to alleles in a population, except that they coexist only in higher taxonomic groupings and are acquired by a species through HGT. We also discuss the role of biased gene transfer in the formation of taxonomically recognizable natural groups in the tree or net of life.

  8. Detecting Highways of Horizontal Gene Transfer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bansal, Mukul S.; Gogarten, J. Peter; Shamir, Ron

    In a horizontal gene transfer (HGT) event a gene is transferred between two species that do not share an ancestor-descendant relationship. Typically, no more than a few genes are horizontally transferred between any two species. However, several studies identified pairs of species between which many different genes were horizontally transferred. Such a pair is said to be linked by a highway of gene sharing. We present a method for inferring such highways. Our method is based on the fact that the evolutionary histories of horizontally transferred genes disagree with the corresponding species phylogeny. Specifically, given a set of gene trees and a trusted rooted species tree, each gene tree is first decomposed into its constituent quartet trees and the quartets that are inconsistent with the species tree are identified. Our method finds a pair of species such that a highway between them explains the largest (normalized) fraction of inconsistent quartets. For a problem on n species, our method requires O(n 4) time, which is optimal with respect to the quartets input size. An application of our method to a dataset of 1128 genes from 11 cyanobacterial species, as well as to simulated datasets, illustrates the efficacy of our method.

  9. Detecting highways of horizontal gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Bansal, Mukul S; Banay, Guy; Gogarten, J Peter; Shamir, Ron

    2011-09-01

    In a horizontal gene transfer (HGT) event, a gene is transferred between two species that do not have an ancestor-descendant relationship. Typically, no more than a few genes are horizontally transferred between any two species. However, several studies identified pairs of species between which many different genes were horizontally transferred. Such a pair is said to be linked by a highway of gene sharing. We present a method for inferring such highways. Our method is based on the fact that the evolutionary histories of horizontally transferred genes disagree with the corresponding species phylogeny. Specifically, given a set of gene trees and a trusted rooted species tree, each gene tree is first decomposed into its constituent quartet trees and the quartets that are inconsistent with the species tree are identified. Our method finds a pair of species such that a highway between them explains the largest (normalized) fraction of inconsistent quartets. For a problem on n species and m input quartet trees, we give an efficient O(m + n(2))-time algorithm for detecting highways, which is optimal with respect to the quartets input size. An application of our method to a dataset of 1128 genes from 11 cyanobacterial species, as well as to simulated datasets, illustrates the efficacy of our method.

  10. Gene Transfers Between Distantly Related Organisms

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Doolittle, Russell F.

    2003-01-01

    With the completion of numerous microbial genome sequences, reports of individual gene transfers between distantly related prokaryotes have become commonplace. On the other hand, transfers between prokaryotes and eukaryotes still excite the imagination. Many of these claims may be premature, but some are certainly valid. In this chapter, the kinds of supporting data needed to propose transfers between distantly related organisms and cite some interesting examples are considered.

  11. Gene Transfers Between Distantly Related Organisms

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Doolittle, Russell F.

    2003-01-01

    With the completion of numerous microbial genome sequences, reports of individual gene transfers between distantly related prokaryotes have become commonplace. On the other hand, transfers between prokaryotes and eukaryotes still excite the imagination. Many of these claims may be premature, but some are certainly valid. In this chapter, the kinds of supporting data needed to propose transfers between distantly related organisms and cite some interesting examples are considered.

  12. Horizontal gene transfer in an acid mine drainage microbial community.

    PubMed

    Guo, Jiangtao; Wang, Qi; Wang, Xiaoqi; Wang, Fumeng; Yao, Jinxian; Zhu, Huaiqiu

    2015-07-04

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) has been widely identified in complete prokaryotic genomes. However, the roles of HGT among members of a microbial community and in evolution remain largely unknown. With the emergence of metagenomics, it is nontrivial to investigate such horizontal flow of genetic materials among members in a microbial community from the natural environment. Because of the lack of suitable methods for metagenomics gene transfer detection, microorganisms from a low-complexity community acid mine drainage (AMD) with near-complete genomes were used to detect possible gene transfer events and suggest the biological significance. Using the annotation of coding regions by the current tools, a phylogenetic approach, and an approximately unbiased test, we found that HGTs in AMD organisms are not rare, and we predicted 119 putative transferred genes. Among them, 14 HGT events were determined to be transfer events among the AMD members. Further analysis of the 14 transferred genes revealed that the HGT events affected the functional evolution of archaea or bacteria in AMD, and it probably shaped the community structure, such as the dominance of G-plasma in archaea in AMD through HGT. Our study provides a novel insight into HGT events among microorganisms in natural communities. The interconnectedness between HGT and community evolution is essential to understand microbial community formation and development.

  13. A tool to analyze the transferability of health promotion interventions.

    PubMed

    Cambon, Linda; Minary, Laetitia; Ridde, Valery; Alla, François

    2013-12-16

    Health promotion interventions are often complex and not easily transferable from one setting to another. The objective of this article is to present the development of a tool to analyze the transferability of these interventions and to support their development and adaptation to new settings. The concept mapping (CM) method was used. CM is helpful for generating a list of ideas associated with a concept and grouping them statistically. Researchers and stakeholders in the health promotion field were mobilized to participate in CM and generated a first list of transferability criteria. Duplicates were eliminated, and the shortened list was returned to the experts, scored for relevance and grouped into categories. Concept maps were created, then the project team selected the definitive map. From the final list of criteria thus structured, a tool to analyze transferability was created. This tool was subsequently tested by 15 project leaders and nine experts. In all, 18 experts participated in CM. After testing, a tool, named ASTAIRE, contained 23 criteria structured into four categories: population, environment, implementation, and support for transfer. It consists of two tools--one for reporting data from primary interventions and one for analyzing interventions' transferability and supporting their adaptation to new settings. The tool is helpful for selecting the intervention to transfer into the setting being considered and for supporting its adaptation. It also facilitates new interventions to be produced with more explicit transferability criteria.

  14. [A tool to facilitate transferability of health promotion interventions: ASTAIRE].

    PubMed

    Cambon, Linda; Minary, Laetitia; Ridde, Valérie; Alla, François

    2014-01-01

    The complexity of health promotion interventions raises the problem of the transferability of their results from one setting to another. A tool has been developed and validated: ASTAIRE (AnalySe de la Transférabilité et Accompagnement à l'adaptation des InteRventions en promotion de la santE) (analysis of the transferability and support to adaptation of health promotion interventions). The purpose of this article is to present the French language version of this tool to enable French-speaking stakeholders and scientists to adopt this tool and use it for the purposes of development of evidence-based health promotion. ASTAIRE comprises 23 transferability criteria classified in four categories: population, environment, implementation, transfer support. It is composed of two grids, one for reporting of initial interventions according to transferability criteria and the other to analyse the comparability of settings and to facilitate transfer. This tool is designed to support the choice of the intervention most adapted to the setting and to facilitate transfer of this intervention. Use of this tool can promote the development of evidence-based approaches according to an adaptive logic of interventions. Collective use of this tool in project logics can distinguish the key functions of interventions, which determine their efficacy and which must be transferred, from aspects related to the form, which can be adapted to the setting.

  15. Novel gene transfer systems: intelligent gene transfer vectors for gene medicines.

    PubMed

    Nakajima, Toshihiro

    2012-01-01

    Drug delivery systems for gene transfer are called 'vectors'. These systems were originally invented as a delivery system for the transfection in vitro or in vivo. Several vectors are then developed for clinical use of gene medicines and currently some of them are approved as animal drugs. Conventional drug delivery system generally consists of approved (existing) materials to avoid additional pre-clinical or clinical studies. However, current vectors contain novel materials to improve an efficacy of gene medicines. Thus, these vectors have functions more than a mere delivery of active ingredients. For example some vectors have immunological functions such as adjuvants in vaccines. These new types of vectors are called 'intelligent' or 'innovative' vector system', since the concept or strategy for the development is completely different from conventional drug delivery systems. In this article, we described a current status of 'intelligent gene transfer vectors and discussed on the potentials of them.

  16. Friendly Extensible Transfer Tool Beta Version

    SciTech Connect

    Collins, William P.; Gutierrez, Kenneth M.; McRee, Susan R.; Sands, Daniel N.; Yaklin, Allan C.

    2016-04-15

    Often data transfer software is designed to meet specific requirements or apply to specific environments. Frequently, this requires source code integration for added functionality. An extensible data transfer framework is needed to more easily incorporate new capabilities, in modular fashion. Using FrETT framework, functionality may be incorporated (in many cases without need of source code) to handle new platform capabilities: I/O methods (e.g., platform specific data access), network transport methods, data processing (e.g., data compression.).

  17. Antibody Gene Transfer for HIV Immunoprophylaxis

    PubMed Central

    Balazs, Alejandro B.; West, Anthony P.

    2015-01-01

    Antibody gene transfer, which involves the delivery of genes that encode potent, broadly neutralizing anti-HIV antibodies, is a promising new strategy to prevent HIV infection. A satellite symposium at the AIDS Vaccine 2012 conference brought together many of the groups working in this field. PMID:23238748

  18. Antibody gene transfer for HIV immunoprophylaxis.

    PubMed

    Balazs, Alejandro B; West, Anthony P

    2013-01-01

    Antibody gene transfer, which involves the delivery of genes that encode potent, broadly neutralizing antibodies to human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), is a promising new strategy for preventing HIV infection. A satellite symposium at the AIDS Vaccine 2012 conference brought together many of the groups working in this field.

  19. Emerging role of regulatory T cells in gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Cao, Ou; Furlan-Freguia, Christian; Arruda, Valder R; Herzog, Roland W

    2007-10-01

    Induction and maintenance of immune tolerance to therapeutic transgene products are key requirements for successful gene replacement therapies. Gene transfer may also be used to specifically induce immune tolerance and thereby augment other types of therapies. Similarly, gene therapies for treatment of autoimmune diseases are being developed in order to restore tolerance to self-antigens. Regulatory T cells have emerged as key players in many aspects of immune tolerance, and a rapidly increasing body of work documents induction and/or activation of regulatory T cells by gene transfer. Regulatory T cells may suppress antibody formation and cytotoxic T cell responses and may be critical for immune tolerance to therapeutic proteins. In this regard, CD4(+)CD25(+) regulatory T cells have been identified as important components of tolerance in several gene transfer protocols, including hepatic in vivo gene transfer. Augmentation of regulatory T cell responses should be a promising new tool to achieve tolerance and avoid immune-mediated rejection of gene therapy. During the past decade, it has become obvious that immune regulation is an important and integral component of tolerance to self-antigens and of many forms of induced tolerance. Gene therapy can only be successful if the immune system does not reject the therapeutic transgene product. Recent studies provide a rapidly growing body of evidence that regulatory T cells (T(reg)) are involved and often play a crucial role in tolerance to proteins expressed by means of gene transfer. This review seeks to provide an overview of these data and their implications for gene therapy.

  20. Gene transfer mediated by alpha2-macroglobulin.

    PubMed Central

    Schneider, H; Huse, K; Birkenmeier, G; Otto, A; Scholz, G H

    1996-01-01

    alpha2-Macroglobulin covalently linked to poly(L)-lysine can be used as a vehicle for receptor-mediated gene transfer. This modified alpha2-macroglobulin maintains its ability to bind to the alpha2-macroglobulin receptor, and was shown to introduce a luciferase reporter gene plasmid into HepG2 human hepatoma cells in vitro. The alpha2-macroglobulin receptor is a very large and multifunctional cell surface receptor, whose rapid and efficient internalization rate makes it attractive for gene therapy, e.g. for hepatic gene targeting via injection into the portal vein. PMID:8871570

  1. Tool transfers are a form of teaching among chimpanzees

    PubMed Central

    Musgrave, Stephanie; Morgan, David; Lonsdorf, Elizabeth; Mundry, Roger; Sanz, Crickette

    2016-01-01

    Teaching is a form of high-fidelity social learning that promotes human cumulative culture. Although recently documented in several nonhuman animals, teaching is rare among primates. In this study, we show that wild chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes troglodytes) in the Goualougo Triangle teach tool skills by providing learners with termite fishing probes. Tool donors experienced significant reductions in tool use and feeding, while tool recipients significantly increased their tool use and feeding after tool transfers. These transfers meet functional criteria for teaching: they occur in a learner’s presence, are costly to the teacher, and improve the learner’s performance. Donors also showed sophisticated cognitive strategies that effectively buffered them against potential costs. Teaching is predicted when less costly learning mechanisms are insufficient. Given that these chimpanzees manufacture sophisticated, brush-tipped fishing probes from specific raw materials, teaching in this population may relate to the complexity of these termite-gathering tasks. PMID:27725706

  2. Technology Transfer Challenges for High-Assurance Software Engineering Tools

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Koga, Dennis (Technical Monitor); Penix, John; Markosian, Lawrence Z.

    2003-01-01

    In this paper, we describe our experience with the challenges thar we are currently facing in our effort to develop advanced software verification and validation tools. We categorize these challenges into several areas: cost benefits modeling, tool usability, customer application domain, and organizational issues. We provide examples of challenges in each area and identrfj, open research issues in areas which limit our ability to transfer high-assurance software engineering tools into practice.

  3. Technology Transfer Challenges for High-Assurance Software Engineering Tools

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Koga, Dennis (Technical Monitor); Penix, John; Markosian, Lawrence Z.

    2003-01-01

    In this paper, we describe our experience with the challenges thar we are currently facing in our effort to develop advanced software verification and validation tools. We categorize these challenges into several areas: cost benefits modeling, tool usability, customer application domain, and organizational issues. We provide examples of challenges in each area and identrfj, open research issues in areas which limit our ability to transfer high-assurance software engineering tools into practice.

  4. Molecular Transfer of Nematode Resistance Genes

    PubMed Central

    Williamson, V. M.; Ho, J.-Y.; Ma, H. M.

    1992-01-01

    Recombinant DNA techniques have been used to introduce agronomically valuable traits, including resistance to viruses, herbicides, and insects, into crop plants. Introduction of these genes into plants frequently involves Agrobacterium-mediated gene transfer. The potential exists for applying this technology to nematode control by introducing genes conferring resistance to nematodes. Transferred genes could include those encoding products detrimental to nematode development or reproduction as well as cloned host resistance genes. Host genes that confer resistance to cyst or root-knot nematode species have been identified in many plants. The best characterized is Mi, a gene that confers resistance to root-knot nematodes in tomato. A map-based cloning approach is being used to isolate the gene. For development of a detailed map of the region of the genome surrounding Mi, DNA markers genetically linked to Mi have been identified and analyzed in tomato lines that have undergone a recombination event near Mi. The molecular map will be used to identify DNA corresponding to Mi. We estimate that a clone of Mi will be obtained in 2-5 years. An exciting prospect is that introduction of this gene will confer resistance in plant species without currently available sources of resistance. PMID:19282989

  5. Viral Vectors for in Vivo Gene Transfer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thévenot, E.; Dufour, N.; Déglon, N.

    The transfer of DNA into the nucleus of a eukaryotic cell (gene transfer) is a central theme of modern biology. The transfer is said to be somatic when it refers to non-germline organs of a developed individual, and germline when it concerns gametes or the fertilised egg of an animal, with the aim of transmitting the relevant genetic modification to its descendents [1]. The efficient introduction of genetic material into a somatic or germline cell and the control of its expression over time have led to major advances in understanding how genes work in vivo, i.e., in living organisms (functional genomics), but also to the development of innovative therapeutic methods (gene therapy). The efficiency of gene transfer is conditioned by the vehicle used, called the vector. Desirable features for a vector are as follows: Easy to produce high titer stocks of the vector in a reproducible way. Absence of toxicity related to transduction (transfer of genetic material into the target cell, and its expression there) and no immune reaction of the organism against the vector and/or therapeutic protein. Stability in the expression of the relevant gene over time, and the possibility of regulation, e.g., to control expression of the therapeutic protein on the physiological level, or to end expression at the end of treatment. Transduction of quiescent cells should be as efficient as transduction of dividing cells. Vectors currently used fall into two categories: non-viral and viral vectors. In non-viral vectors, the DNA is complexed with polymers, lipids, or cationic detergents (described in Chap. 3). These vectors have a low risk of toxicity and immune reaction. However, they are less efficient in vivo than viral vectors when it comes to the number of cells transduced and long-term transgene expression. (Naked DNA transfer or electroporation is rather inefficient in the organism. This type of gene transfer will not be discussed here, and the interested reader is referred to the

  6. Naked DNA for liver gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Liu, Feng; Tyagi, Pradeep

    2005-01-01

    The majority of acquired and inherited genetic disorders, including most inborn errors of metabolism, are manifested in the liver. Therefore, it is hardly any surprise to see a large number of Medline reports describing gene therapy efforts in preclinical settings directed toward this organ (Inoue et al., 2004; Oka and Chen, 2004). Of late, non-viral vectors have garnered a lot of attention from the biomedical research community engaged in liver gene therapy (Gupta et al., 2004). However, the first initiative toward gene transfer to the liver using a non-viral approach was taken by Hickman et al. (1994), who applied the technique of naked DNA injection pioneered by Wolff (1990) for skeletal muscle. Direct injection of naked DNA resulted in low, variable and localized gene expression in the rat liver. Consequently, several developments reported in the literature since then aimed to improve hepatic gene expression by employing both surgical and nonsurgical methods. These developments include the exploitation of the unique vasculature of liver as well as the use of electric and mechanical force as an adjunct to the systemic administration of the naked plasmid gene. This chapter focuses on these developments reported from various laboratories, including ours. In addition, the underlying mechanism responsible for the dramatic increase in gene expression using these latest approaches for non-viral gene transfer to the liver is also discussed.

  7. Horizontal Gene Transfer and Ecosystem Function Dynamics.

    PubMed

    van de Guchte, Maarten

    2017-09-01

    Horizontal gene transfer can provide bacteria with new functions that confer an important competitive advantage, and is therefore likely to affect the dynamics of bacterial ecosystems. Two studies by Wolfe et al. and Bonham et al. prepare the way to study this hypothesis in a model ecosystem with reproducible properties. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Unsupervised Learning in Detection of Gene Transfer

    PubMed Central

    Hamel, L.; Nahar, N.; Poptsova, M. S.; Zhaxybayeva, O.; Gogarten, J. P.

    2008-01-01

    The tree representation as a model for organismal evolution has been in use since before Darwin. However, with the recent unprecedented access to biomolecular data, it has been discovered that, especially in the microbial world, individual genes making up the genome of an organism give rise to different and sometimes conflicting evolutionary tree topologies. This discovery calls into question the notion of a single evolutionary tree for an organism and gives rise to the notion of an evolutionary consensus tree based on the evolutionary patterns of the majority of genes in a genome embedded in a network of gene histories. Here, we discuss an approach to the analysis of genomic data of multiple genomes using bipartition spectral analysis and unsupervised learning. An interesting observation is that genes within genomes that have evolutionary tree topologies, which are in substantial conflict with the evolutionary consensus tree of an organism, point to possible horizontal gene transfer events which often delineate significant evolutionary events. PMID:18509479

  9. Viral vectors for gene transfer: current status of gene therapeutics.

    PubMed

    Heilbronn, Regine; Weger, Stefan

    2010-01-01

    Gene therapy for the correction of inherited or acquired disease has gained increasing importance in recent years. Successful treatment of children suffering from severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) was achieved using retrovirus vectors for gene transfer. Encouraging improvements of vision were reported in a genetic eye disorder (LCA) leading to early childhood blindness. Adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors were used for gene transfer in these trials. This chapter gives an overview of the design and delivery of viral vectors for the transport of a therapeutic gene into a target cell or tissue. The construction and production of retrovirus, lentivirus, and AAV vectors are covered. The focus is on production methods suitable for biopharmaceutical upscaling and for downstream processing. Quality control measures and biological safety considerations for the use of vectors in clinical trials are discussed.

  10. Lateral gene transfer in the subsurface

    SciTech Connect

    Barkay, Tamar; Sobecky, Patricia

    2007-08-27

    Lateral gene transfer (LGT) is an important adaptive mechanism among prokaryotic organisms. This mechanism is particularly important for the response of microorganisms to changing environmental conditions because it facilitates the transfer of a large number of genes and their rapid expression. Together the transferred genes promote rapid genetic and metabolic changes that may enhance survival to newly established and sometimes hostile environmental conditions. The goal of our project was to examine if and how LGT enhances microbial adaptation to toxic heavy metals in subsurface environments that had been contaminated by mixed wastes due to activities associated with the production of nuclear energy and weapons. This task has been accomplished by dividing the project to several sub-tasks. Thus, we: (1) Determined the level of resistance of subsurface bacterial isolates to several toxic metals, all identified as pollutants of concern in subsurface environments; (2) Designed, tested, and applied, a molecular approach that determined whether metal resistance genes had evolved by LGT among subsurface bacteria; and (3) Developed a DNA hybridization array for the identification of broad host range plasmids and of metal resistance plasmids. The results are briefly summarized below with references to published papers and manuscripts in preparation where details about our research can be found. Additional information may be found in copies of our published manuscripts and conference proceedings, and our yearly reports that were submitted through the RIMS system.

  11. Clinical Applications Involving CNS Gene Transfer

    PubMed Central

    Kantor, Boris; McCown, Thomas; Leone, Paola; Gray, Steven J.

    2015-01-01

    Diseases of the central nervous system (CNS) have traditionally been the most difficult to treat by traditional pharmacological methods, due mostly to the blood–brain barrier and the difficulties associated with repeated drug administration targeting the CNS. Viral vector gene transfer represents a way to permanently provide a therapeutic protein within the nervous system after a single administration, whether this be a gene replacement strategy for an inherited disorder or a disease-modifying protein for a disease such as Parkinson's. Gene therapy approaches for CNS disorders has evolved considerably over the last two decades. Although a breakthrough treatment has remained elusive, current strategies are now considerably safer and potentially much more effective. This chapter will explore the past, current, and future status of CNS gene therapy, focusing on clinical trials utilizing adeno-associated virus and lentiviral vectors. PMID:25311921

  12. Research Tools and Materials | NCI Technology Transfer Center | TTC

    Cancer.gov

    Research Tools can be found in TTC's Available Technologies and in scientific publications. They are freely available to non-profits and universities through a Material Transfer Agreement (or other appropriate mechanism), and available via licensing to companies. | [google6f4cd5334ac394ab.html

  13. Endosymbiotic gene transfer and transcriptional regulation of transferred genes in Paulinella chromatophora.

    PubMed

    Nowack, Eva C M; Vogel, Heiko; Groth, Marco; Grossman, Arthur R; Melkonian, Michael; Glöckner, Gernot

    2011-01-01

    Paulinella chromatophora is a cercozoan amoeba that contains "chromatophores," which are photosynthetic inclusions of cyanobacterial origin. The recent discovery that chromatophores evolved independently of plastids, underwent major genome reduction, and transferred at least two genes to the host nucleus has highlighted P. chromatophora as a model to infer early steps in the evolution of photosynthetic organelles. However, owing to the paucity of nuclear genome sequence data, the extent of endosymbiotic gene transfer (EGT) and host symbiont regulation are currently unknown. A combination of 454 and Illumina next generation sequencing enabled us to generate a comprehensive reference transcriptome data set for P. chromatophora on which we mapped short Illumina cDNA reads generated from cultures from the dark and light phases of a diel cycle. Combined with extensive phylogenetic analyses of the deduced protein sequences, these data revealed that 1) about 0.3-0.8% of the nuclear genes were obtained by EGT compared with 11-14% in the Plantae, 2) transferred genes show a distinct bias in that many encode small proteins involved in photosynthesis and photoacclimation, 3) host cells established control over expression of transferred genes, and 4) not only EGT, but to a minor extent also horizontal gene transfer from organisms that presumably served as food sources, helped to shape the nuclear genome of P. chromatophora. The identification of a significant number of transferred genes involved in photosynthesis and photoacclimation of thylakoid membranes as well as the observed transcriptional regulation of these genes strongly implies import of the encoded gene products into chromatophores, a feature previously thought to be restricted to canonical organelles. Thus, a possible mechanism by which P. chromatophora exerts control over the performance of its newly acquired photosynthetic organelle may involve controlling the expression of nuclear-encoded chromatophore

  14. Ultrasound enhances retrovirus-mediated gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Naka, Toshio; Sakoda, Tsuyoshi; Doi, Takashi; Tsujino, Takeshi; Masuyama, Tohru; Kawashima, Seinosuke; Iwasaki, Tadaaki; Ohyanagi, Mitsumasa

    2007-01-01

    Viral vector systems are efficient for transfection of foreign genes into many tissues. Especially, retrovirus based vectors integrate the transgene into the genome of the target cells, which can sustain long term expression. However, it has been demonstrated that the transduction efficiency using retrovirus is relatively lower than those of other viruses. Ultrasound was recently reported to increase gene expression using plasmid DNA, with or without, a delivery vehicle. However, there are no reports, which show an ultrasound effect to retrovirus-mediated gene transfer efficiency. Retrovirus-mediated gene transfer systems were used for transfection of 293T cells, bovine aortic endothelial cells (BAECs), rat aortic smooth muscle cells (RASMCs), and rat skeletal muscle myoblasts (L6 cells) with beta-galactosidase (beta-Gal) genes. Transduction efficiency and cell viability assay were performed on 293T cells that were exposed to varying durations (5 to 30 seconds) and power levels (1.0 watts/cm(2) to 4.0 watts/cm(2)) of ultrasound after being transduced by a retrovirus. Effects of ultrasound to the retrovirus itself was evaluated by transduction efficiency of 293T cells. After exposure to varying power levels of ultrasound to a retrovirus for 5 seconds, 293T cells were transduced by a retrovirus, and transduction efficiency was evaluated. Below 1.0 watts/cm(2) and 5 seconds exposure, ultrasound showed increased transduction efficiency and no cytotoxicity to 293T cells transduced by a retrovirus. Also, ultrasound showed no toxicity to the virus itself at the same condition. Exposure of 5 seconds at the power of 1.0 watts/cm(2) of an ultrasound resulted in significant increases in retrovirus-mediated gene expression in all four cell types tested in this experiment. Transduction efficiencies by ultrasound were enhanced 6.6-fold, 4.8-fold, 2.3-fold, and 3.2-fold in 293T cells, BAECs, RASMCs, and L6 cells, respectively. Furthermore, beta-Gal activities were also increased

  15. Horizontal Gene Transfer, Dispersal and Haloarchaeal Speciation

    PubMed Central

    Papke, R. Thane; Corral, Paulina; Ram-Mohan, Nikhil; de la Haba, Rafael R.; Sánchez-Porro, Cristina; Makkay, Andrea; Ventosa, Antonio

    2015-01-01

    The Halobacteria are a well-studied archaeal class and numerous investigations are showing how their diversity is distributed amongst genomes and geographic locations. Evidence indicates that recombination between species continuously facilitates the arrival of new genes, and within species, it is frequent enough to spread acquired genes amongst all individuals in the population. To create permanent independent diversity and generate new species, barriers to recombination are probably required. The data support an interpretation that rates of evolution (e.g., horizontal gene transfer and mutation) are faster at creating geographically localized variation than dispersal and invasion are at homogenizing genetic differences between locations. Therefore, we suggest that recurrent episodes of dispersal followed by variable periods of endemism break the homogenizing forces of intrapopulation recombination and that this process might be the principal stimulus leading to divergence and speciation in Halobacteria. PMID:25997110

  16. RANGE: Gene Transfer of Reversibly Controlled Polycistronic Genes

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yiwei; Cao, Liji; Luo, Chonglin; Ditzel, Désirée AW; Peter, Jörg; Sprengel, Rolf

    2013-01-01

    We developed a single vector recombinant adeno-associated viral (rAAV) expression system for spatial and reversible control of polycistronic gene expression. Our approach (i) integrates the advantages of the tetracycline (Tet)-controlled transcriptional silencer tTSKid and the self-cleaving 2A peptide bridge, (ii) combines essential regulatory components as an autoregulatory loop, (iii) simplifies the gene delivery scheme, and (iv) regulates multiple genes in a synchronized manner. Controlled by an upstream Tet-responsive element (TRE), both the ubiquitous chicken β-actin promoter (CAG) and the neuron-specific synapsin-1 promoter (Syn) could regulate expression of tTSKid together with two 2A-linked reporter genes. Transduction in vitro exhibited maximally 50-fold regulation by doxycycline (Dox). Determined by gene delivery method as well as promoter, highly specific tissues were transduced in vivo. Bioluminescence imaging (BLI) visualized reversible “ON/OFF” gene switches over repeated “Doxy-Cycling” in living mice. Thus, the reversible rAAV-mediated N-cistronic gene expression system, termed RANGE, may serve as a versatile tool to achieve reversible polycistronic gene regulation for the study of gene function as well as gene therapy. PMID:23571608

  17. Therapeutic option of plasmid-DNA based gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Taniyama, Yoshiaki; Azuma, Junya; Kunugiza, Yasuo; Iekushi, Kazuma; Rakugi, Hiromi; Morishita, Ryuichi

    2012-01-01

    Gene therapy offers a novel approach for the prevention and treatment of a variety of diseases, but it is not yet a common method in clinical cases because of various problems. Viral vectors show high efficiency of gene transfer, but they have some problems with toxicity and immunity. On the other hand, plasmid deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA)-based gene transfer is very safe, but its efficiency is relatively low. Especially, plasmid DNA gene therapy is used for cardiovascular disease because plasmid DNA transfer is possible for cardiac or skeletal muscle. Clinical angiogenic gene therapy using plasmid DNA gene transfer has been attempted in patients with peripheral artery disease, but a phase III clinical trial did not show sufficient efficiency. In this situation, more efficient plasmid DNA gene transfer is needed all over the world. This review focuses on plasmid DNA gene transfer and its enhancement, including ultrasound with microbubbles, electroporation, hydrodynamic method, gene gun, jet injection, cationic lipids and cationic polymers.

  18. Simple rapid method for gene transfer

    SciTech Connect

    Cockburn, A.F.; Meier, H.

    1990-01-30

    The object of the present invention is to provide methods for gene transfer that reduce or eliminate cellular pretreatment steps, e.g., the removal of cell wall by chemical or enzymatic methods, is rapid and can be practiced without the need of additional expensive equipment. Cells, embryos or tissues selected for genetic manipulation are suspended in an Eppendorf tube in an aliquot of the desired genetic material to be transferred to which the resulting mixture is added and is agitated by vortexing from about 30 to about 90 seconds. The cells, embryos or tissue are sedimented and the DNA supernatant removed. After sedimentation, the injected material is resuspended in or on a growth medium to assay for expression.

  19. Horizontal gene transfer in parasitic plants.

    PubMed

    Davis, Charles C; Xi, Zhenxiang

    2015-08-01

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) between species has been a major focus of plant evolutionary research during the past decade. Parasitic plants, which establish a direct connection with their hosts, have provided excellent examples of how these transfers are facilitated via the intimacy of this symbiosis. In particular, phylogenetic studies from diverse clades indicate that parasitic plants represent a rich system for studying this phenomenon. Here, HGT has been shown to be astonishingly high in the mitochondrial genome, and appreciable in the nuclear genome. Although explicit tests remain to be performed, some transgenes have been hypothesized to be functional in their recipient species, thus providing a new perspective on the evolution of novelty in parasitic plants.

  20. Horizontal gene transfer from Agrobacterium to plants

    PubMed Central

    Matveeva, Tatiana V.; Lutova, Ludmila A.

    2014-01-01

    Most genetic engineering of plants uses Agrobacterium mediated transformation to introduce novel gene content. In nature, insertion of T-DNA in the plant genome and its subsequent transfer via sexual reproduction has been shown in several species in the genera Nicotiana and Linaria. In these natural examples of horizontal gene transfer from Agrobacterium to plants, the T-DNA donor is assumed to be a mikimopine strain of A. rhizogenes. A sequence homologous to the T-DNA of the Ri plasmid of Agrobacterium rhizogenes was found in the genome of untransformed Nicotiana glauca about 30 years ago, and was named “cellular T-DNA” (cT-DNA). It represents an imperfect inverted repeat and contains homologs of several T-DNA oncogenes (NgrolB, NgrolC, NgORF13, NgORF14) and an opine synthesis gene (Ngmis). A similar cT-DNA has also been found in other species of the genus Nicotiana. These presumably ancient homologs of T-DNA genes are still expressed, indicating that they may play a role in the evolution of these plants. Recently T-DNA has been detected and characterized in Linaria vulgaris and L. dalmatica. In Linaria vulgaris the cT-DNA is present in two copies and organized as a tandem imperfect direct repeat, containing LvORF2, LvORF3, LvORF8, LvrolA, LvrolB, LvrolC, LvORF13, LvORF14, and the Lvmis genes. All L. vulgaris and L. dalmatica plants screened contained the same T-DNA oncogenes and the mis gene. Evidence suggests that there were several independent T-DNA integration events into the genomes of these plant genera. We speculate that ancient plants transformed by A. rhizogenes might have acquired a selective advantage in competition with the parental species. Thus, the events of T-DNA insertion in the plant genome might have affected their evolution, resulting in the creation of new plant species. In this review we focus on the structure and functions of cT-DNA in Linaria and Nicotiana and discuss their possible evolutionary role. PMID:25157257

  1. Gene duplication and transfer events in plant mitochondria genome

    SciTech Connect

    Xiong Aisheng Peng Rihe; Zhuang Jing; Gao Feng; Zhu Bo; Fu Xiaoyan; Xue Yong; Jin Xiaofen; Tian Yongsheng; Zhao Wei; Yao Quanhong

    2008-11-07

    Gene or genome duplication events increase the amount of genetic material available to increase the genomic, and thereby phenotypic, complexity of organisms during evolution. Gene duplication and transfer events have been important to molecular evolution in all three domains of life, and may be the first step in the emergence of new gene functions. Gene transfer events have been proposed as another accelerator of evolution. The duplicated gene or genome, mainly nuclear, has been the subject of several recent reviews. In addition to the nuclear genome, organisms have organelle genomes, including mitochondrial genome. In this review, we briefly summarize gene duplication and transfer events in the plant mitochondrial genome.

  2. Horizontal gene transfer: A critical view

    PubMed Central

    Kurland, C. G.; Canback, B.; Berg, Otto G.

    2003-01-01

    It has been suggested that horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is the “essence of phylogeny.” In contrast, much data suggest that this is an exaggeration resulting in part from a reliance on inadequate methods to identify HGT events. In addition, the assumption that HGT is a ubiquitous influence throughout evolution is questionable. Instead, rampant global HGT is likely to have been relevant only to primitive genomes. In modern organisms we suggest that both the range and frequencies of HGT are constrained most often by selective barriers. As a consequence those HGT events that do occur most often have little influence on genome phylogeny. Although HGT does occur with important evolutionary consequences, classical Darwinian lineages seem to be the dominant mode of evolution for modern organisms. PMID:12902542

  3. Concepts and tools for gene editing.

    PubMed

    Josa, Santiago; Seruggia, Davide; Fernández, Almudena; Montoliu, Lluis

    2016-01-01

    Gene editing is a relatively recent concept in the molecular biology field. Traditional genetic modifications in animals relied on a classical toolbox that, aside from some technical improvements and additions, remained unchanged for many years. Classical methods involved direct delivery of DNA sequences into embryos or the use of embryonic stem cells for those few species (mice and rats) where it was possible to establish them. For livestock, the advent of somatic cell nuclear transfer platforms provided alternative, but technically challenging, approaches for the genetic alteration of loci at will. However, the entire landscape changed with the appearance of different classes of genome editors, from initial zinc finger nucleases, to transcription activator-like effector nucleases and, most recently, with the development of clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR) and CRISPR-associated proteins (Cas). Gene editing is currently achieved by CRISPR-Cas-mediated methods, and this technological advancement has boosted our capacity to generate almost any genetically altered animal that can be envisaged.

  4. CRISPR as a strong gene editing tool.

    PubMed

    Shen, Shengfu; Loh, Tiing Jen; Shen, Hongling; Zheng, Xuexiu; Shen, Haihong

    2017-01-01

    Clustered regularly-interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR) is a new and effective genetic editing tool. CRISPR was initially found in bacteria to protect it from virus invasions. In the first step, specific DNA strands of virus are identified by guide RNA that is composed of crRNA and tracrRNA. Then RNAse III is required for producing crRNA from pre-crRNA. In The second step, a crRNA:tracrRNA:Cas9 complex guides RNase III to cleave target DNA. After cleavage of DNA by CRISPR-Cas9, DNA can be fixed by Non- Homologous End Joining (NHEJ) and Homology Directed Repair (HDR). Whereas NHEJ is simple and random, HDR is much more complex and accurate. Gene editing by CRISPR is able to be applied to various biological field such as agriculture and treating genetic diseases in human. [BMB Reports 2017; 50(1): 20-24].

  5. CRISPR as a strong gene editing tool

    PubMed Central

    Shen, Shengfu; Loh, Tiing Jen; Shen, Hongling; Zheng, Xuexiu; Shen, Haihong

    2017-01-01

    Clustered regularly-interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR) is a new and effective genetic editing tool. CRISPR was initially found in bacteria to protect it from virus invasions. In the first step, specific DNA strands of virus are identified by guide RNA that is composed of crRNA and tracrRNA. Then RNAse III is required for producing crRNA from pre-crRNA. In The second step, a crRNA:tracrRNA:Cas9 complex guides RNase III to cleave target DNA. After cleavage of DNA by CRISPR-Cas9, DNA can be fixed by Non-Homologous End Joining (NHEJ) and Homology Directed Repair (HDR). Whereas NHEJ is simple and random, HDR is much more complex and accurate. Gene editing by CRISPR is able to be applied to various biological field such as agriculture and treating genetic diseases in human. PMID:27616359

  6. Optical gene transfer by femtosecond laser pulses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Konig, Karsten; Riemann, Iris; Tirlapur, Uday K.

    2003-07-01

    Targeted transfection of cells is an important technique for gene therapy and related biomedical applications. We delineate how high-intensity (1012 W/cm2) near-infrared (NIR) 80 MHz nanojoule femtosecond laser pulses can create highly localised membrane perforations within a minute focal volume, enabling non-invasive direct transfection of mammalian cells with DNA. We suspended Chinese hamster ovarian (CHO), rat kangaroo kidney epithelial (PtK2) and rat fibroblast cells in 0.5 ml culture medium in a sterile miniaturized cell chamber (JenLab GmbH, Jena, Germany) containing 0.2 μg plasmid DNA vector pEGFP-N1 (4.7 kb), which codes for green fluorescent protein (GFP). The NIR laser beam was introduced into a femtosecond laser scanning microscope (JenLab GmbH, Jena, Germany; focussed on the edge of the cell membrane of a target cell for 16 ms. The integration and expression efficiency of EGFP were assessed in situ by two-photon fluorescence-lifetime imaging using time-correlated single photon counting. The unique capability to transfer foreign DNA safely and efficiently into specific cell types (including stem cells), circumventing mechanical, electrical or chemical means, will have many applications, such as targeted gene therapy and DNA vaccination.

  7. Plant transformation via pollen tube-mediated gene transfer

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Genetic transformation using foreign genes and the subsequent development of transgenic plants has been employed to develop enhanced elite germplasm. Although some skepticism exits regarding pollen tube-mediated gene transfer (PTT), reports demonstrating improved transformation efficiency with PTT ...

  8. Gene Transfer & Hybridization Studies in Hyperthermophilic Species

    SciTech Connect

    Nelson, Karen E.

    2005-10-14

    A. ABSTRACT The importance of lateral gene transfer (LGT) in the evolution of microbial species has become increasingly evident with each completed microbial genome sequence. Most significantly, the genome of Thermotoga maritima MSB8, a hyperthermophilic bacterium isolated by Karl Stetter and workers from Vulcano Italy in 1986, and sequenced at The Institute for Genomic Research (TIGR) in Rockville Maryland in 1999, revealed extensive LGT between % . this bacterium and members of the archaeal domain (in particular Archaeoglobus fulgidus, and Pyracoccus frcriosus species). Based on whole genome comparisons, it was estimated that 24% of the genetic information in this organism was acquired by genetic exchange with archaeal species, Independent analyses including periodicity analysis of the T. maritimu genomic DNA sequence, phylogenetic reconstruction based on genes that appear archaeal-like, and codon and amino acid usage, have provided additional evidence for LGT between T. maritima and the archaea. More recently, DiRuggiero and workers have identified a very recent LGT event between two genera of hyperthermophilic archaea, where a nearly identical DNA fragment of 16 kb in length flanked by insertion sequence (IS) elements, exists. Undoubtedly, additional examples of LGT will be identified as more microbial genomes are completed. For the present moment however, the genome sequence of T. maritima and other hyperthermophiles including P. furiosus, Pyrococcus horikoshii, Pyrococcus abyssi, A. fulgidus, and Aquifex aeolicus, have significantly increased out awareness of evolution being a web of life rather than a tree of life, as suggested by single gene phylogenies. In this proposal, we will aim to determine the extent of LGT across the hyperthemophiles, employing iY maritima as the model organism. A variety of biochemical techniques and phylogenetic reconstructions will allow for a detailed and thorough characterization of the extent of LGT in this species. The

  9. Stable transformation of maize after gene transfer by electroporation.

    PubMed

    Fromm, M E; Taylor, L P; Walbot, V

    The graminaceous monocots, including the economically important cereals, seem to be refractory to infection by Agrobacterium tumefaciens, a natural gene transfer system that has been successfully exploited for transferring foreign genes into higher plants. Therefore, direct transfer techniques that are potentially applicable to all plant species have been developed using a few dicot and monocot species as model systems. One of these techniques, electroporation, uses electrical pulses of high field strength to permeabilize cell membranes reversibly so as to facilitate the transfer of DNA into cells. Electroporation-mediated gene transfer has resulted in stably transformed animal cells and transient gene expression in monocot and dicot plant cells. Here we report that electroporation-mediated DNA transfer of a chimaeric gene encoding neomycin phosphotransferase results in stably transformed maize cells that are resistant to kanamycin.

  10. Plasmid DNA-based gene transfer with ultrasound and microbubbles.

    PubMed

    Taniyama, Yoshiaki; Azuma, Junya; Rakugi, Hiromi; Morishita, Ryuichi

    2011-12-01

    Gene therapy offers a novel approach for the prevention and treatment of a variety of diseases, but it is not yet a common option in the real world because of various problems. Viral vectors show high efficiency of gene transfer, but they have some problems with toxicity and immunity. On the other hand, plasmid DNA-based gene transfer is very safe, but its efficiency is relatively low. Especially, plasmid DNA gene therapy is used for cardiovascular disease because plasmid DNA transfer is possible for cardiac or skeletal muscle. Clinical angiogenic gene therapy using plasmid DNA gene transfer has been attempted in patients with peripheral artery disease, but a Phase III clinical trial did not show sufficient efficiency. Recently, a Phase III clinical trial of hepatocyte growth factor gene therapy in peripheral artery disease (PAD) showed improvement of ischemic ulcers, but it could not salvage limbs from amputation. In addition, a Phase I/II clinical study of fibroblast growth factor gene therapy in PAD extended amputation-free survival, but it seemed to fail in Phase III. In this situation, we and others have developed plasmid DNA-based gene transfer using ultrasound with microbubbles to enhance its efficiency while maintaining safety. Ultrasound-mediated gene transfer has been reported to augment the gene transfer efficiency and select the target organ using cationic microbubble phospholipids which bind negatively charged DNA. Ultrasound with microbubblesis likely to create new therapeutic options inavariety of diseases.

  11. Gene transfer strategies in animal transgenesis.

    PubMed

    Montoliu, Lluís

    2002-01-01

    Position effects in animal transgenesis have prevented the reproducible success and limited the initial expectations of this technique in many biotechnological projects. Historically, several strategies have been devised to overcome such position effects, including the progressive addition of regulatory elements belonging to the same or to a heterologous expression domain. An expression domain is thought to contain all regulatory elements that are needed to specifically control the expression of a given gene in time and space. The lack of profound knowledge on the chromatin structure of expression domains of biotechnological interest, such as mammary gland-specific genes, explains why most standard expression vectors have failed to drive high-level, position-independent, and copy-number-dependent expression of transgenes in a reproducible manner. In contrast, the application of artificial chromosome-type constructs to animal transgenesis usually ensures optimal expression levels. YACs, BACs, and PACs have become crucial tools in animal transgenesis, allowing the inclusion of distant key regulatory sequences, previously unknown, that are characteristic for each expression domain. These elements contribute to insulating the artificial chromosome-type constructs from chromosomal position effects and are fundamental in order to guarantee the correct expression of transgenes.

  12. Widespread of horizontal gene transfer in the human genome.

    PubMed

    Huang, Wenze; Tsai, Lillian; Li, Yulong; Hua, Nan; Sun, Chen; Wei, Chaochun

    2017-04-04

    A fundamental concept in biology is that heritable material is passed from parents to offspring, a process called vertical gene transfer. An alternative mechanism of gene acquisition is through horizontal gene transfer (HGT), which involves movement of genetic materials between different species. Horizontal gene transfer has been found prevalent in prokaryotes but very rare in eukaryote. In this paper, we investigate horizontal gene transfer in the human genome. From the pair-wise alignments between human genome and 53 vertebrate genomes, 1,467 human genome regions (2.6 M bases) from all chromosomes were found to be more conserved with non-mammals than with most mammals. These human genome regions involve 642 known genes, which are enriched with ion binding. Compared to known horizontal gene transfer regions in the human genome, there were few overlapping regions, which indicated horizontal gene transfer is more common than we expected in the human genome. Horizontal gene transfer impacts hundreds of human genes and this study provided insight into potential mechanisms of HGT in the human genome.

  13. Incorporation of a horizontally transferred gene into an operon during cnidarian evolution.

    PubMed

    Dana, Catherine E; Glauber, Kristine M; Chan, Titus A; Bridge, Diane M; Steele, Robert E

    2012-01-01

    Genome sequencing has revealed examples of horizontally transferred genes, but we still know little about how such genes are incorporated into their host genomes. We have previously reported the identification of a gene (flp) that appears to have entered the Hydra genome through horizontal transfer. Here we provide additional evidence in support of our original hypothesis that the transfer was from a unicellular organism, and we show that the transfer occurred in an ancestor of two medusozoan cnidarian species. In addition we show that the gene is part of a bicistronic operon in the Hydra genome. These findings identify a new animal phylum in which trans-spliced leader addition has led to the formation of operons, and define the requirements for evolution of an operon in Hydra. The identification of operons in Hydra also provides a tool that can be exploited in the construction of transgenic Hydra strains.

  14. Incorporation of a Horizontally Transferred Gene into an Operon during Cnidarian Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Dana, Catherine E.; Glauber, Kristine M.; Chan, Titus A.; Bridge, Diane M.; Steele, Robert E.

    2012-01-01

    Genome sequencing has revealed examples of horizontally transferred genes, but we still know little about how such genes are incorporated into their host genomes. We have previously reported the identification of a gene (flp) that appears to have entered the Hydra genome through horizontal transfer. Here we provide additional evidence in support of our original hypothesis that the transfer was from a unicellular organism, and we show that the transfer occurred in an ancestor of two medusozoan cnidarian species. In addition we show that the gene is part of a bicistronic operon in the Hydra genome. These findings identify a new animal phylum in which trans-spliced leader addition has led to the formation of operons, and define the requirements for evolution of an operon in Hydra. The identification of operons in Hydra also provides a tool that can be exploited in the construction of transgenic Hydra strains. PMID:22328943

  15. Resin-Transfer-Molding of a Tool Face

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fowler, Mike; Ehlers, Edward; Brainard, David; Kellermann, Charles

    2004-01-01

    A resin-transfer-molding (RTM) process has been devised for fabricating a matrix/graphite-cloth composite panel that serves as tool face for manufacturing other composite panels. Heretofore, RTM has generally been confined to resins with viscosities low enough that they can readily flow through interstices of cloth. The present process makes it possible to use a high-temperature, more-viscous resin required for the tool face. First, a release layer and then a graphite cloth are laid on a foam pattern that has the desired contour. A spring with an inside diameter of 3/8 in. (.9.5 mm) is placed along the long dimension of the pattern to act as a conduit for the resin. Springs with an inside diameter of 1/4 in. (.6.4 mm) are run off the larger lengthwise spring for distributing the resin over the tool face. A glass cloth is laid on top to act as breather. The whole layup is vacuum-bagged. Resin is mixed and made to flow under vacuum assistance to infiltrate the layup through the springs. The whole process takes less than a day, and the exposure of personnel to resin vapors is minimized.

  16. WLCG Transfers Dashboard: a Unified Monitoring Tool for Heterogeneous Data Transfers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andreeva, J.; Beche, A.; Belov, S.; Kadochnikov, I.; Saiz, P.; Tuckett, D.

    2014-06-01

    The Worldwide LHC Computing Grid provides resources for the four main virtual organizations. Along with data processing, data distribution is the key computing activity on the WLCG infrastructure. The scale of this activity is very large, the ATLAS virtual organization (VO) alone generates and distributes more than 40 PB of data in 100 million files per year. Another challenge is the heterogeneity of data transfer technologies. Currently there are two main alternatives for data transfers on the WLCG: File Transfer Service and XRootD protocol. Each LHC VO has its own monitoring system which is limited to the scope of that particular VO. There is a need for a global system which would provide a complete cross-VO and cross-technology picture of all WLCG data transfers. We present a unified monitoring tool - WLCG Transfers Dashboard - where all the VOs and technologies coexist and are monitored together. The scale of the activity and the heterogeneity of the system raise a number of technical challenges. Each technology comes with its own monitoring specificities and some of the VOs use several of these technologies. This paper describes the implementation of the system with particular focus on the design principles applied to ensure the necessary scalability and performance, and to easily integrate any new technology providing additional functionality which might be specific to that technology.

  17. Problems associated with gene transfer and opportunities for microgravity environments

    SciTech Connect

    Tennessen, D.J.

    1997-01-01

    The method of crop improvement by gene transfer is becoming increasingly routine with transgenic foods and ornamental crops now being marketed to consumers. However, biological processes of plants, and the physical barriers of current protocols continue to limit the application of gene transfer in many commercial crops. The goal of this paper is to outline the current limitations of gene transfer and to hypothesize possible opportunities for use of microgravity to overcome such limitations. The limitations detailed in this paper include host-range specificity of {ital Agrobacterium} mediated transformation, probability of gene insertion, position effects of the inserted genes, gene copy number, stability of foreign gene expression in host plants, and regeneration of recalcitrant plant species. Microgravity offers an opportunity for gene transfer where cell growth kinetics, DNA synthesis, and genetic recombination rates can be altered. Such biological conditions may enhance the ability for recombination of reporter genes and other genes of interest to agriculture. Proposed studies would be useful for understanding instability of foreign gene expression and may lead to stable transformed plants. Other aspects of gene transfer in microgravity are discussed. {copyright} {ital 1997 American Institute of Physics.}

  18. Problems associated with gene transfer and opportunities for microgravity environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tennessen, Daniel J.

    1997-01-01

    The method of crop improvement by gene transfer is becoming increasingly routine with transgenic foods and ornamental crops now being marketed to consumers. However, biological processes of plants, and the physical barriers of current protocols continue to limit the application of gene transfer in many commercial crops. The goal of this paper is to outline the current limitations of gene transfer and to hypothesize possible opportunities for use of microgravity to overcome such limitations. The limitations detailed in this paper include host-range specificity of Agrobacterium mediated transformation, probability of gene insertion, position effects of the inserted genes, gene copy number, stability of foreign gene expression in host plants, and regeneration of recalcitrant plant species. Microgravity offers an opportunity for gene transfer where cell growth kinetics, DNA synthesis, and genetic recombination rates can be altered. Such biological conditions may enhance the ability for recombination of reporter genes and other genes of interest to agriculture. Proposed studies would be useful for understanding instability of foreign gene expression and may lead to stable transformed plants. Other aspects of gene transfer in microgravity are discussed.

  19. Ultrasound -Assisted Gene Transfer to Adipose Tissue-Derived Stem/Progenitor Cells (ASCs)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miyamoto, Yoshitaka; Ueno, Hitomi; Hokari, Rei; Yuan, Wenji; Kuno, Shuichi; Kakimoto, Takashi; Enosawa, Shin; Negishi, Yoichi; Yoshinaka, Kiyoshi; Matsumoto, Yoichiro; Chiba, Toshio; Hayashi, Shuji

    2011-09-01

    In recent years, multilineage adipose tissue-derived stem cells (ASCs) have become increasingly attractive as a promising source for cell transplantation and regenerative medicine. Particular interest has been expressed in the potential to make tissue stem cells, such as ASCs and marrow stromal cells (MSCs), differentiate by gene transfection. Gene transfection using highly efficient viral vectors such as adeno- and sendai viruses have been developed for this purpose. Sonoporation, or ultrasound (US)-assisted gene transfer, is an alternative gene manipulation technique which employs the creation of a jet stream by ultrasonic microbubble cavitation. Sonoporation using non-viral vectors is expected to be a much safer, although less efficient, tool for prospective clinical gene therapy. In this report, we assessed the efficacy of the sonoporation technique for gene transfer to ASCs. We isolated and cultured adipocyets from mouse adipose tissue. ASCs that have the potential to differentiate with transformation into adipocytes or osteoblasts were obtained. Using the US-assisted system, plasmid DNA containing beta-galactosidase (beta-Gal) and green fluorescent protein (GFP) genes were transferred to the ASCs. For this purpose, a Sonopore 4000 (NEPAGENE Co.) and a Sonazoid (Daiichi Sankyo Co.) instrument were used in combination. ASCs were subjected to US (3.1 MHz, 50% duty cycle, burst rate 2.0 Hz, intensity 1.2 W/cm2, exposure time 30 sec). We observed that the gene was more efficiently transferred with increased concentrations of plasmid DNA (5-150 μg/mL). However, further optimization of the US parameters is required, as the gene transfer efficiency was still relatively low. In conclusion, we herein demonstrate that a gene can be transferred to ASCs using our US-assisted system. In regenerative medicine, this system might resolve the current issues surrounding the use of viral vectors for gene transfer.

  20. Therapeutic antibody gene transfer: an active approach to passive immunity.

    PubMed

    Bakker, Joost M; Bleeker, Wim K; Parren, Paul W H I

    2004-09-01

    Advances in gene transfer approaches are enabling the possibility of applying therapeutic antibodies using DNA. In particular gene transfer in combination with electroporation is promising and can result in generating in vivo antibody concentrations in the low therapeutic range. However, several important problems need to be dealt with before antibody gene transfer can become a valuable supplement to the current therapies. As antibody production following gene transfer is difficult to control, the danger of inducing autoimmune conditions or uncontrollable side effects occurs in cases in which autologous antigens are targeted. It is suggested that the most promising area of application therefore appears to be infectious disease in which heterologous antigens are targeted and concerns for long-term antibody exposure are minimal. Finally, genes encoding fully human antibodies will enhance long-term expression and decrease problems linked to immunogenicity.

  1. The power of phylogenetic approaches to detect horizontally transferred genes

    PubMed Central

    Poptsova, Maria S; Gogarten, J Peter

    2007-01-01

    Background Horizontal gene transfer plays an important role in evolution because it sometimes allows recipient lineages to adapt to new ecological niches. High genes transfer frequencies were inferred for prokaryotic and early eukaryotic evolution. Does horizontal gene transfer also impact phylogenetic reconstruction of the evolutionary history of genomes and organisms? The answer to this question depends at least in part on the actual gene transfer frequencies and on the ability to weed out transferred genes from further analyses. Are the detected transfers mainly false positives, or are they the tip of an iceberg of many transfer events most of which go undetected by current methods? Results Phylogenetic detection methods appear to be the method of choice to infer gene transfers, especially for ancient transfers and those followed by orthologous replacement. Here we explore how well some of these methods perform using in silico transfers between the terminal branches of a gamma proteobacterial, genome based phylogeny. For the experiments performed here on average the AU test at a 5% significance level detects 90.3% of the transfers and 91% of the exchanges as significant. Using the Robinson-Foulds distance only 57.7% of the exchanges and 60% of the donations were identified as significant. Analyses using bipartition spectra appeared most successful in our test case. The power of detection was on average 97% using a 70% cut-off and 94.2% with 90% cut-off for identifying conflicting bipartitions, while the rate of false positives was below 4.2% and 2.1% for the two cut-offs, respectively. For all methods the detection rates improved when more intervening branches separated donor and recipient. Conclusion Rates of detected transfers should not be mistaken for the actual transfer rates; most analyses of gene transfers remain anecdotal. The method and significance level to identify potential gene transfer events represent a trade-off between the frequency of erroneous

  2. LATERAL GENE TRANSFER AND THE HISTORY OF BACTERIAL GENOMES

    SciTech Connect

    Howard Ochman

    2006-02-22

    The aims of this research were to elucidate the role and extent of lateral transfer in the differentiation of bacterial strains and species, and to assess the impact of gene transfer on the evolution of bacterial genomes. The ultimate goal of the project is to examine the dynamics of a core set of protein-coding genes (i.e., those that are distributed universally among Bacteria) by developing conserved primers that would allow their amplification and sequencing in any bacterial taxa. In addition, we adopted a bioinformatic approach to elucidate the extent of lateral gene transfer in sequenced genome.

  3. Intracellular gene transfer: Reduced hydrophobicity facilitates gene transfer for subunit 2 of cytochrome c oxidase

    PubMed Central

    Daley, Daniel O.; Clifton, Rachel; Whelan, James

    2002-01-01

    Subunit 2 of cytochrome c oxidase (Cox2) in legumes offers a rare opportunity to investigate factors necessary for successful gene transfer of a hydrophobic protein that is usually mitochondrial-encoded. We found that changes in local hydrophobicity were necessary to allow import of this nuclear-encoded protein into mitochondria. All legume species containing both a mitochondrial and nuclear encoded Cox2 displayed a similar pattern, with a large decrease in hydrophobicity evident in the first transmembrane region of the nuclear encoded protein compared with the organelle-encoded protein. Mitochondrial-encoded Cox2 could not be imported into mitochondria under the direction of the mitochondrial targeting sequence that readily supports the import of nuclear encoded Cox2. Removal of the first transmembrane region promotes import ability of the mitochondrial-encoded Cox2. Changing just two amino acids in the first transmembrane region of mitochondrial-encoded Cox2 to the corresponding amino acids in the nuclear encoded Cox2 also promotes import ability, whereas changing the same two amino acids in the nuclear encoded Cox2 to what they are in the mitochondrial-encoded copy prevents import. Therefore, changes in amino acids in the mature protein were necessary and sufficient for gene transfer to allow import under the direction of an appropriate signal to achieve the functional topology of Cox2. PMID:12142462

  4. A recently transferred cluster of bacterial genes in Trichomonas vaginalis - lateral gene transfer and the fate of acquired genes

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Lateral Gene Transfer (LGT) has recently gained recognition as an important contributor to some eukaryote proteomes, but the mechanisms of acquisition and fixation in eukaryotic genomes are still uncertain. A previously defined norm for LGTs in microbial eukaryotes states that the majority are genes involved in metabolism, the LGTs are typically localized one by one, surrounded by vertically inherited genes on the chromosome, and phylogenetics shows that a broad collection of bacterial lineages have contributed to the transferome. Results A unique 34 kbp long fragment with 27 clustered genes (TvLF) of prokaryote origin was identified in the sequenced genome of the protozoan parasite Trichomonas vaginalis. Using a PCR based approach we confirmed the presence of the orthologous fragment in four additional T. vaginalis strains. Detailed sequence analyses unambiguously suggest that TvLF is the result of one single, recent LGT event. The proposed donor is a close relative to the firmicute bacterium Peptoniphilus harei. High nucleotide sequence similarity between T. vaginalis strains, as well as to P. harei, and the absence of homologs in other Trichomonas species, suggests that the transfer event took place after the radiation of the genus Trichomonas. Some genes have undergone pseudogenization and degradation, indicating that they may not be retained in the future. Functional annotations reveal that genes involved in informational processes are particularly prone to degradation. Conclusions We conclude that, although the majority of eukaryote LGTs are single gene occurrences, they may be acquired in clusters of several genes that are subsequently cleansed of evolutionarily less advantageous genes. PMID:24898731

  5. XGet: a highly scalable and efficient file transfer tool for clusters

    SciTech Connect

    Greenberg, Hugh; Ionkov, Latchesar; Minnich, Ronald

    2008-01-01

    As clusters rapidly grow in size, transferring files between nodes can no longer be solved by the traditional transfer utilities due to their inherent lack of scalability. In this paper, we describe a new file transfer utility called XGet, which was designed to address the scalability problem of standard tools. We compared XGet against four transfer tools: Bittorrent, Rsync, TFTP, and Udpcast and our results show that XGet's performance is superior to the these utilities in many cases.

  6. Targeted Gene Therapies: Tools, Applications, Optimization

    PubMed Central

    Humbert, Olivier; Davis, Luther; Maizels, Nancy

    2012-01-01

    Many devastating human diseases are caused by mutations in a single gene that prevent a somatic cell from carrying out its essential functions, or by genetic changes acquired as a result of infectious disease or in the course of cell transformation. Targeted gene therapies have emerged as potential strategies for treatment of such diseases. These therapies depend upon rare-cutting endonucleases to cleave at specific sites in or near disease genes. Targeted gene correction provides a template for homology-directed repair, enabling the cell's own repair pathways to erase the mutation and replace it with the correct sequence. Targeted gene disruption ablates the disease gene, disabling its function. Gene targeting can also promote other kinds of genome engineering, including mutation, insertion, or gene deletion. Targeted gene therapies present significant advantages compared to approaches to gene therapy that depend upon delivery of stably expressing transgenes. Recent progress has been fueled by advances in nuclease discovery and design, and by new strategies that maximize efficiency of targeting and minimize off-target damage. Future progress will build on deeper mechanistic understanding of critical factors and pathways. PMID:22530743

  7. Transposon-mediated gene transfer into adult and induced pluripotent stem cells.

    PubMed

    Belay, Eyayu; Dastidar, Sumitava; VandenDriessche, Thierry; Chuah, Marinee K L

    2011-10-01

    Transposon technology is a particularly attractive non-viral gene delivery paradigm that allows for efficient genomic integration into a variety of different cell types. In particular, transposon-mediated gene transfer is a promising tool for stem cell research, by virtue of its ability to efficiently and stably transfer genes into adult and induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells. Moreover, transposons open up new perspectives for non-viral-mediated stem cell-based gene therapy. Several transposon systems, especially the Sleeping Beauty (SB), the piggyBac (PB) and Tol2, have been optimized for gene transfer into mammalian cells. In particular, SB resulted in stable gene transfer into various adult stem cells including human CD34(+) hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs), myoblasts and mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). This has been confirmed with PB, yielding stable gene transfer in human CD34(+) HSCs. Recently, PB transposons were used to deliver the genes encoding the reprogramming factors into somatic cells making it an attractive technology for generating iPS cells. Subsequent de novo expression of the PB transposase resulted in traceless excision of the reprogramming cassette. This prevented inadvertent re-expression of the reprogramming factors obviating some of the concerns associated with the use of integrating vectors. Transposons have also been used as a novel non-viral paradigm to coax differentiation of iPS cells into their desired target cells by forced expression of specific differentiation factors. This review focuses on the emerging potential of transposons for gene transfer into stem cells and its implications for gene therapy and regenerative medicine.

  8. Gene transfer in inner ear cells: a challenging race.

    PubMed

    Sacheli, R; Delacroix, L; Vandenackerveken, P; Nguyen, L; Malgrange, B

    2013-03-01

    Recent advances in human genomics led to the identification of numerous defective genes causing deafness, which represent novel putative therapeutic targets. Future gene-based treatment of deafness resulting from genetic or acquired sensorineural hearing loss may include strategies ranging from gene therapy to antisense delivery. For successful development of gene therapies, a minimal requirement involves the engineering of appropriate gene carrier systems. Transfer of exogenous genetic material into the mammalian inner ear using viral or non-viral vectors has been characterized over the last decade. The nature of inner ear cells targeted, as well as the transgene expression level and duration, are highly dependent on the vector type, the route of administration and the strength of the promoter driving expression. This review summarizes and discusses recent advances in inner ear gene-transfer technologies aimed at examining gene function or identifying new treatment for inner ear disorders.

  9. Gene transfer as a future therapy for rheumatoid arthritis.

    PubMed

    Müller-Ladner, Ulf; Pap, Thomas; Gay, Renate E; Gay, Steffen

    2003-07-01

    Inhibiting key pathogenic processes within the rheumatoid synovium is a most attractive goal to achieve, and the number of potential intra- and extracellular pathways operative in rheumatoid arthritis (RA) that could be used for a gene therapy strategy is increasing continuously. Gene transfer or gene therapy might also be one of the approaches to solve the problem of long-term expression of therapeutic genes, in order to replace the frequent application of recombinant proteins, in the future. However, at present, gene therapy has not reached a realistic clinical stage, which is mainly due to severe side effects in humans, the complexity of RA pathophysiology and the current state of available gene transfer techniques. On the other hand, novel gene delivery systems are not restricted to vectors or certain types of cells, as mobile cells including macrophages, dendritic cells, lymphocytes and multipotent stem cells can also be used as smart gene transfer vehicles. Moreover, the observation in animal models that application of viral vectors into a joint can exert additional therapeutic effects in nearby joints might also facilitate the transfer from animal to human gene therapy. Future strategies will also examine the potential of novel long-term expression vectors such as lentiviruses and cytomegalovirus (CMV)-based viruses as a basis for future clinical trials in RA.

  10. Quantitative analysis of recombination between YFP and CFP genes of FRET biosensors introduced by lentiviral or retroviral gene transfer

    PubMed Central

    Komatsubara, Akira T.; Matsuda, Michiyuki; Aoki, Kazuhiro

    2015-01-01

    Biosensors based on the principle of Förster (or fluorescence) resonance energy transfer (FRET) have been developed to visualize spatio-temporal dynamics of signalling molecules in living cells. Many of them adopt a backbone of intramolecular FRET biosensor with a cyan fluorescent protein (CFP) and yellow fluorescent protein (YFP) as donor and acceptor, respectively. However, there remains the difficulty of establishing cells stably expressing FRET biosensors with a YFP and CFP pair by lentiviral or retroviral gene transfer, due to the high incidence of recombination between YFP and CFP genes. To address this, we examined the effects of codon-diversification of YFP on the recombination of FRET biosensors introduced by lentivirus or retrovirus. The YFP gene that was fully codon-optimized to E.coli evaded the recombination in lentiviral or retroviral gene transfer, but the partially codon-diversified YFP did not. Further, the length of spacer between YFP and CFP genes clearly affected recombination efficiency, suggesting that the intramolecular template switching occurred in the reverse-transcription process. The simple mathematical model reproduced the experimental data sufficiently, yielding a recombination rate of 0.002–0.005 per base. Together, these results show that the codon-diversified YFP is a useful tool for expressing FRET biosensors by lentiviral or retroviral gene transfer. PMID:26290434

  11. Quantitative analysis of recombination between YFP and CFP genes of FRET biosensors introduced by lentiviral or retroviral gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Komatsubara, Akira T; Matsuda, Michiyuki; Aoki, Kazuhiro

    2015-08-20

    Biosensors based on the principle of Förster (or fluorescence) resonance energy transfer (FRET) have been developed to visualize spatio-temporal dynamics of signalling molecules in living cells. Many of them adopt a backbone of intramolecular FRET biosensor with a cyan fluorescent protein (CFP) and yellow fluorescent protein (YFP) as donor and acceptor, respectively. However, there remains the difficulty of establishing cells stably expressing FRET biosensors with a YFP and CFP pair by lentiviral or retroviral gene transfer, due to the high incidence of recombination between YFP and CFP genes. To address this, we examined the effects of codon-diversification of YFP on the recombination of FRET biosensors introduced by lentivirus or retrovirus. The YFP gene that was fully codon-optimized to E.coli evaded the recombination in lentiviral or retroviral gene transfer, but the partially codon-diversified YFP did not. Further, the length of spacer between YFP and CFP genes clearly affected recombination efficiency, suggesting that the intramolecular template switching occurred in the reverse-transcription process. The simple mathematical model reproduced the experimental data sufficiently, yielding a recombination rate of 0.002-0.005 per base. Together, these results show that the codon-diversified YFP is a useful tool for expressing FRET biosensors by lentiviral or retroviral gene transfer.

  12. Possible mechanism of polycation liposome (PCL)-mediated gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Sugiyama, Mayu; Matsuura, Mituso; Takeuchi, Yoshito; Kosaka, Jun; Nango, Mamoru; Oku, Naoto

    2004-01-28

    A novel gene transfer system utilizing polycation liposomes (PCLs), obtained by modifying liposomes with cetyl polyethylenimine (PEI), was previously developed (Gene Ther. 7 (2002) 1148). PCLs show notable transfection efficiency with low cytotoxicity. However, the mechanism of PCL-mediated gene transfer is still unclear. In this study, we examined the intracellular trafficking of PCL-DNA complexes by using HT1080 cells, fluorescent probe-labeled materials, and confocal laser scan microscopy. We found that the PCL-DNA complexes were taken up into cells by the endosomal pathway, since both cellular uptake of the complex and gene expression were blocked by wortmannin, an inhibitor of this pathway. We also observed that the plasmid DNA and cetyl PEI complex became detached from the PCL lipids and was preferentially transferred into the nucleus in the form of the complex, whereas the PCL lipids remained in the cytoplasmic area, possibly in the endosomes. In fact, nigericin, which dissipates the pH gradient across the endosomal membrane, inhibited the detachment of lipids from the PCL-DNA complex and subsequent gene expression. Taken together, our data indicate the following mechanism for gene transfer by PCLs: PCLs effectively transfer DNA to endosomes and release cetyl PEI-DNA complexes into the cytosol. Furthermore, cetyl PEI also contributes to gene entry into the nucleus.

  13. Muscle as a target for supplementary factor IX gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Hoffman, Brad E; Dobrzynski, Eric; Wang, Lixin; Hirao, Lauren; Mingozzi, Federico; Cao, Ou; Herzog, Roland W

    2007-07-01

    Immune responses to the factor IX (F.IX) transgene product are a concern in gene therapy for the X-linked bleeding disorder hemophilia B. The risk for such responses is determined by several factors, including the vector, target tissue, and others. Previously, we have demonstrated that hepatic gene transfer with adeno-associated viral (AAV) vectors can induce F.IX-specific immune tolerance. Muscle-derived F.IX expression, however, is limited by a local immune response. Here, skeletal muscle was investigated as a target for supplemental gene transfer. Given the low invasiveness of intramuscular injections, this route would be ideal for secondary gene transfer, thereby boosting levels of transgene expression. However, this is feasible only if immune tolerance established by compartmentalization of expression to the liver extends to other sites. Immune tolerance to human F.IX established by prior hepatic AAV-2 gene transfer was maintained after subsequent injection of AAV-1 or adenoviral vector into skeletal muscle, and tolerized mice failed to form antibodies or an interferon (IFN)-gamma(+) T cell response to human F.IX. A sustained increase in systemic transgene expression was obtained for AAV-1, whereas an increase after adenoviral gene transfer was transient. A CD8(+) T cell response specifically against adenovirus-transduced fibers was observed, suggesting that cytotoxic T cell responses against viral antigens were sufficient to eliminate expression in muscle. In summary, the data demonstrate that supplemental F.IX gene transfer to skeletal muscle does not break tolerance achieved by liver-derived expression. The approach is efficacious, if the vector for muscle gene transfer does not express immunogenic viral proteins.

  14. Gene Chips: A New Tool for Biology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Botstein, David

    2005-03-01

    The knowledge of many complete genomic sequences has led to a ``grand unification of biology,'' consisting of direct evidence that most of the basic cellular functions of all organisms are carried out by genes and proteins whose primary sequences are directly related by descent (i.e. orthologs). Further, genome sequences have made it possible to study all the genes of a single organism simultaneously. We have been using DNA microarrays (sometime referred to as ``gene chips'') to study patterns of gene expression and genome rearrangement in yeast and human cells under a variety of conditions and in human tumors and normal tissues. These experiments produce huge volumes of data; new computational and statistical methods are required to analyze them properly. Examples from this work will be presented to illustrate how genome-scale experiments and analysis can result in new biological insights not obtainable by traditional analyses of genes and proteins one by one. For lymphomas, breast tumors, lung tumors, liver tumors, gastric tumors, brain tumors and soft tissue tumors we have been able, by the application of clustering algorithms, to subclassify tumors of similar anatomical origin on the basis of their gene expression patterns. These subclassifications appear to be reproducible and clinically as well as biologically meaningful. By studying synchronized cells growing in culture, we have identified many hundreds of yeast and human genes that are expressed periodically, at characteristically different points in the cell division cycle. In humans, it turns out that most of these genes are the same genes that comprise the ``proliferation cluster,'' i.e. the genes whose expression is specifically associated with the proliferativeness of tumors and tumor cell lines. Finally, we have been applying a variant of our DNA microarray technology (which we call ``array comparative hybridization'') to follow the DNA copy number of genes, both in tumors and in yeast cells

  15. Global Analysis of Horizontal Gene Transfer in Fusarium verticillioides

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    The co-occurrence of microbes within plants and other specialized niches may facilitate horizontal gene transfer (HGT) affecting host-pathogen interactions. We recently identified fungal-to-fungal HGTs involving metabolic gene clusters. For a global analysis of HGTs in the maize pathogen Fusarium ve...

  16. Evolution of and horizontal gene transfer in the Endornavirus genus.

    PubMed

    Song, Dami; Cho, Won Kyong; Park, Sang-Ho; Jo, Yeonhwa; Kim, Kook-Hyung

    2013-01-01

    The transfer of genetic information between unrelated species is referred to as horizontal gene transfer. Previous studies have demonstrated that both retroviral and non-retroviral sequences have been integrated into eukaryotic genomes. Recently, we identified many non-retroviral sequences in plant genomes. In this study, we investigated the evolutionary origin and gene transfer of domains present in endornaviruses which are double-stranded RNA viruses. Using the available sequences for endornaviruses, we found that Bell pepper endornavirus-like sequences homologous to the glycosyltransferase 28 domain are present in plants, fungi, and bacteria. The phylogenetic analysis revealed the glycosyltransferase 28 domain of Bell pepper endornavirus may have originated from bacteria. In addition, two domains of Oryza sativa endornavirus, a glycosyltransferase sugar-binding domain and a capsular polysaccharide synthesis protein, also exhibited high similarity to those of bacteria. We found evidence that at least four independent horizontal gene transfer events for the glycosyltransferase 28 domain have occurred among plants, fungi, and bacteria. The glycosyltransferase sugar-binding domains of two proteobacteria may have been horizontally transferred to the genome of Thalassiosira pseudonana. Our study is the first to show that three glycome-related viral genes in the genus Endornavirus have been acquired from marine bacteria by horizontal gene transfer.

  17. Evolution of and Horizontal Gene Transfer in the Endornavirus Genus

    PubMed Central

    Park, Sang-Ho; Jo, Yeonhwa; Kim, Kook-Hyung

    2013-01-01

    The transfer of genetic information between unrelated species is referred to as horizontal gene transfer. Previous studies have demonstrated that both retroviral and non-retroviral sequences have been integrated into eukaryotic genomes. Recently, we identified many non-retroviral sequences in plant genomes. In this study, we investigated the evolutionary origin and gene transfer of domains present in endornaviruses which are double-stranded RNA viruses. Using the available sequences for endornaviruses, we found that Bell pepper endornavirus-like sequences homologous to the glycosyltransferase 28 domain are present in plants, fungi, and bacteria. The phylogenetic analysis revealed the glycosyltransferase 28 domain of Bell pepper endornavirus may have originated from bacteria. In addition, two domains of Oryza sativa endornavirus, a glycosyltransferase sugar-binding domain and a capsular polysaccharide synthesis protein, also exhibited high similarity to those of bacteria. We found evidence that at least four independent horizontal gene transfer events for the glycosyltransferase 28 domain have occurred among plants, fungi, and bacteria. The glycosyltransferase sugar-binding domains of two proteobacteria may have been horizontally transferred to the genome of Thalassiosira pseudonana. Our study is the first to show that three glycome-related viral genes in the genus Endornavirus have been acquired from marine bacteria by horizontal gene transfer. PMID:23667703

  18. Regulation of mammalian horizontal gene transfer by apoptotic DNA fragmentation

    PubMed Central

    Yan, B; Wang, H; Li, F; Li, C-Y

    2006-01-01

    Previously it was shown that horizontal DNA transfer between mammalian cells can occur through the uptake of apoptotic bodies, where genes from the apoptotic cells were transferred to neighbouring cells phagocytosing the apoptotic bodies. The regulation of this process is poorly understood. It was shown that the ability of cells as recipient of horizontally transferred DNA was enhanced by deficiency of p53 or p21. However, little is known with regard to the regulation of DNA from donor apoptotic cells. Here we report that the DNA fragmentation factor/caspase-activated DNase (DFF/CAD), which is the endonuclease responsible for DNA fragmentation during apoptosis, plays a significant role in regulation of horizontal DNA transfer. Cells with inhibited DFF/CAD function are poor donors for horizontal gene transfer (HGT) while their ability of being recipients of HGT is not affected. PMID:17146478

  19. Simultaneous Scheduling of Jobs, AGVs and Tools Considering Tool Transfer Times in Multi Machine FMS By SOS Algorithm

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sivarami Reddy, N.; Ramamurthy, D. V., Dr.; Prahlada Rao, K., Dr.

    2017-08-01

    This article addresses simultaneous scheduling of machines, AGVs and tools where machines are allowed to share the tools considering transfer times of jobs and tools between machines, to generate best optimal sequences that minimize makespan in a multi-machine Flexible Manufacturing System (FMS). Performance of FMS is expected to improve by effective utilization of its resources, by proper integration and synchronization of their scheduling. Symbiotic Organisms Search (SOS) algorithm is a potent tool which is a better alternative for solving optimization problems like scheduling and proven itself. The proposed SOS algorithm is tested on 22 job sets with makespan as objective for scheduling of machines and tools where machines are allowed to share tools without considering transfer times of jobs and tools and the results are compared with the results of existing methods. The results show that the SOS has outperformed. The same SOS algorithm is used for simultaneous scheduling of machines, AGVs and tools where machines are allowed to share tools considering transfer times of jobs and tools to determine the best optimal sequences that minimize makespan.

  20. Vector-mediated antibody gene transfer for infectious diseases.

    PubMed

    Schnepp, Bruce C; Johnson, Philip R

    2015-01-01

    This chapter discusses the emerging field of vector-mediated antibody gene transfer as an alternative vaccine for infectious disease, with a specific focus on HIV. However, this methodology need not be confined to HIV-1; the general strategy of vector-mediated antibody gene transfer can be applied to other difficult vaccine targets like hepatitis C virus, malaria, respiratory syncytial virus, and tuberculosis. This approach is an improvement over classical passive immunization strategies that administer antibody proteins to the host to provide protection from infection. With vector-mediated gene transfer, the antibody gene is delivered to the host, via a recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV) vector; this in turn results in long-term endogenous antibody expression from the injected muscle that confers protective immunity. Vector-mediated antibody gene transfer can rapidly move existing, potent broadly cross-neutralizing HIV-1-specific antibodies into the clinic. The gene transfer products demonstrate a potency and breadth identical to the original product. This strategy eliminates the need for immunogen design and interaction with the adaptive immune system to generate protection, a strategy that so far has shown limited promise.

  1. Gene transfer agents: phage-like elements of genetic exchange

    PubMed Central

    Lang, Andrew S.; Zhaxybayeva, Olga; Beatty, J. Thomas

    2013-01-01

    Horizontal gene transfer is important in the evolution of bacterial and archaeal genomes. An interesting genetic exchange process is carried out by diverse phage-like gene transfer agents (GTAs) that are found in a wide range of prokaryotes. Although GTAs resemble phages, they lack the hallmark capabilities that define typical phages, and they package random pieces of the producing cell’s genome. In this Review, we discuss the defining characteristics of the GTAs that have been identified to date, along with potential functions for these agents and the possible evolutionary forces that act on the genes involved in their production. PMID:22683880

  2. Novel gene expression tools for rice biotechnology

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Biotechnology is an effective and important method of improving both quality and agronomic traits in rice. We are developing novel molecular tools for genetic engineering, with a focus on developing novel transgene expression control elements (i.e. promoters) for rice. A suite of monocot grass promo...

  3. Feasibility of retroviral vector-mediated in utero gene transfer to the fetal rabbit.

    PubMed

    Moreno, Rafael; Rosal, Marta; Cabero, Lluis; Gratacós, Eduard; Aran, Josep M

    2005-01-01

    Successful treatment or prevention of severe hereditary diseases could conceivably be achieved by genetic intervention early in development. Viral vector-mediated fetal gene transfer is proving a valuable tool to test the above concept in relevant animal models. Although the pregnant rabbit is a well-recognized model for fetal therapy, few preclinical assays have used it to validate fetal gene transfer approaches. In this preliminary study we assessed for the first time the feasibility of retroviral vector-mediated in utero gene transfer in the fetal rabbit. Different amounts of the vesicular stomatitis virus G pseudotyped MFG(nls)LacZ retroviral vector, expressing a nuclear-localized beta-galactosidase reporter protein were injected intraperitoneally and -hepatically into 20- to 22-day-old fetuses. At 8-9 days post-treatment, the pups were sacrificed and the tissues harvested for analysis. Evidence of gene transfer was obtained by PCR amplification of proviral sequences within genomic DNA isolated from the treated samples. Transgenic beta-galactosidase expression was assessed by X-gal histochemical staining. By intraperitoneal injection 43% of the viable fetuses treated (3/7) showed evidence of successful LacZ gene transfer and low-level beta-galactosidase expression into liver and heart, whereas by intrahepatic injection roughly 38% (3/8) of the livers were positive for LacZ gene transfer and expression. The success rate for the viable fetuses rose to 67% positive livers (4/6) when a near double amount of recombinant virus was injected using a 10-fold concentrated virus stock. In terms of short-term safety, fetal and maternal survival rates approached 80% of treated fetuses, and 100% of treated does. The pregnant rabbit is a useful and reliable model allowing the design of further studies to optimize the conditions for effective, safer, and persistent retroviral vector-mediated fetal gene transfer. Copyright (c) 2005 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  4. High frequency of horizontal gene transfer in the oceans.

    PubMed

    McDaniel, Lauren D; Young, Elizabeth; Delaney, Jennifer; Ruhnau, Fabian; Ritchie, Kim B; Paul, John H

    2010-10-01

    Oceanic bacteria perform many environmental functions, including biogeochemical cycling of many elements, metabolizing of greenhouse gases, functioning in oceanic food webs (microbial loop), and producing valuable natural products and viruses. We demonstrate that the widespread capability of marine bacteria to participate in horizontal gene transfer (HGT) in coastal and oceanic environments may be the result of gene transfer agents (GTAs), viral-like particles produced by α-Proteobacteria. We documented GTA-mediated gene transfer frequencies a thousand to a hundred million times higher than prior estimates of HGT in the oceans, with as high as 47% of the culturable natural microbial community confirmed as gene recipients. These findings suggest a plausible mechanism by which marine bacteria acquire novel traits, thus ensuring resilience in the face of environmental change.

  5. Characterization of Two Cysteine Transfer RNA Genes from Xenopus Laevis

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1984-07-12

    author hereby certifies that the use of any copyrighted material in the dissertation manuscript entitled: "Characterization of two cysteine tRNA genes...Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences 11 ABSTRACT Title of Thesis: Characterization of Two Cysteine Transfer RNA Genes from Xenopus...method after constructing a set of deletions and reclonlng into the plasmid pUC 8. The DNA fragment is 1737 bp long and contains two cysteine tRNA genes

  6. Identification of horizontally transferred genes in the genus Colletotrichum reveals a steady tempo of bacterial to fungal gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Jaramillo, Vinicio D Armijos; Sukno, Serenella A; Thon, Michael R

    2015-01-02

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is the stable transmission of genetic material between organisms by means other than vertical inheritance. HGT has an important role in the evolution of prokaryotes but is relatively rare in eukaryotes. HGT has been shown to contribute to virulence in eukaryotic pathogens. We studied the importance of HGT in plant pathogenic fungi by identifying horizontally transferred genes in the genomes of three members of the genus Colletotrichum. We identified eleven HGT events from bacteria into members of the genus Colletotrichum or their ancestors. The HGT events include genes involved in amino acid, lipid and sugar metabolism as well as lytic enzymes. Additionally, the putative minimal dates of transference were calculated using a time calibrated phylogenetic tree. This analysis reveals a constant flux of genes from bacteria to fungi throughout the evolution of subphylum Pezizomycotina. Genes that are typically transferred by HGT are those that are constantly subject to gene duplication and gene loss. The functions of some of these genes suggest roles in niche adaptation and virulence. We found no evidence of a burst of HGT events coinciding with major geological events. In contrast, HGT appears to be a constant, albeit rare phenomenon in the Pezizomycotina, occurring at a steady rate during their evolution.

  7. Lateral Transfer of Genes and Gene Fragments in Staphylococcus Extends beyond Mobile Elements ▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Chan, Cheong Xin; Beiko, Robert G.; Ragan, Mark A.

    2011-01-01

    The widespread presence of antibiotic resistance and virulence among Staphylococcus isolates has been attributed in part to lateral genetic transfer (LGT), but little is known about the broader extent of LGT within this genus. Here we report the first systematic study of the modularity of genetic transfer among 13 Staphylococcus genomes covering four distinct named species. Using a topology-based phylogenetic approach, we found, among 1,354 sets of homologous genes examined, strong evidence of LGT in 368 (27.1%) gene sets, and weaker evidence in another 259 (19.1%). Within-gene and whole-gene transfer contribute almost equally to the topological discordance of these gene sets against a reference phylogeny. Comparing genetic transfer in single-copy and in multicopy gene sets, we observed a higher frequency of LGT in the latter, and a substantial functional bias in cases of whole-gene transfer (little such bias was observed in cases of fragmentary genetic transfer). We found evidence that lateral transfer, particularly of entire genes, impacts not only functions related to antibiotic, drug, and heavy-metal resistance, as well as membrane transport, but also core informational and metabolic functions not associated with mobile elements. Although patterns of sequence similarity support the cohesion of recognized species, LGT within S. aureus appears frequently to disrupt clonal complexes. Our results demonstrate that LGT and gene duplication play important parts in functional innovation in staphylococcal genomes. PMID:21622749

  8. Gene therapy in dentistry: tool of genetic engineering. Revisited.

    PubMed

    Gupta, Khushboo; Singh, Saurabh; Garg, Kavita Nitish

    2015-03-01

    Advances in biotechnology have brought gene therapy to the forefront of medical research. The concept of transferring genes to tissues for clinical applications has been discussed nearly half a century, but the ability to manipulate genetic material via recombinant DNA technology has brought this goal to reality. The feasibility of gene transfer was first demonstrated using tumour viruses. This led to development of viral and nonviral methods for the genetic modification of somatic cells. Applications of gene therapy to dental and oral problems illustrate the potential impact of this technology on dentistry. Preclinical trial results regarding the same have been very promising. In this review we will discuss methods, vectors involved, clinical implication in dentistry and scientific issues associated with gene therapy. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Pharmacodynamic approach to study the gene transfer process employing non-viral vectors.

    PubMed

    Aliño, S F; Escrig, E; Revert, F; Guillem, V M; Crespo, A

    2000-12-15

    In the present work we set out to apply pharmacodynamic concepts derived from dose-response curves (Potency and Efficacy) to characterize the gene transfer efficiency of a vector:DNA complex. We employed two widely used vectors, the cationic lipid DOTAP (N,N, N-trimethyl 1-2-3-bis (1-oxo-9-octa-decenyl)oxy-(Z, Z)-1-propanaminium methyl sulfate) and the cationic polymer PEI (polyethylenimine, 800 kDa) to transfect several constructions of the green fluorescent protein cDNA. The analysis of dose-response curves indicated that in all cases the goodness-of-fit was > 0.99. Potency is a measure that provides information on gene activity per amount of DNA. Efficacy is a measure of maximum gene expression achievable using a specific vector:DNA complex, and depends on both the intrinsic efficacy of the gene (evaluated using different vectors to transfer the same gene construct) and on vector efficacy in DNA delivery (evaluated using a single vector to deliver different gene constructs). The results suggest that Potency and Efficacy are objective parameters for describing and comparing the goodness of vectors, as well as the intrinsic efficacy of a given gene construct. Furthermore, they are useful tools that may contribute to a better understanding of the mechanistic gene transfer process of each vector.

  10. GenePRIMP: A software quality control tool

    SciTech Connect

    Amrita Pati

    2010-05-05

    Amrita Pati of the DOE Joint Genome Institute's Genome Biology group describes the software tool GenePRIMP and how it fits into the quality control pipeline for microbial genomics. Further details regarding GenePRIMP appear in a paper published online May 2, 2010 in Nature Methods.

  11. GenePRIMP: A software quality control tool

    ScienceCinema

    Amrita Pati

    2016-07-12

    Amrita Pati of the DOE Joint Genome Institute's Genome Biology group describes the software tool GenePRIMP and how it fits into the quality control pipeline for microbial genomics. Further details regarding GenePRIMP appear in a paper published online May 2, 2010 in Nature Methods.

  12. Phosphatidylserine immobilization of lentivirus for localized gene transfer

    PubMed Central

    Shin, Seungjin; Tuinstra, Hannah M.; Salvay, David M.; Shea, Lonnie D.

    2010-01-01

    Localized and efficient gene transfer can be promoted by exploiting the interaction between the vector and biomaterial. Regulation of the vector-material interaction was investigated by capitalizing on the binding between lentivirus and phosphatidylserine (PS), a component of the plasma membrane. PS was incorporated into microspheres composed of the copolymers of lactide and glycolide (PLG) using an emulsion process. Increasing the weight ratio of PS to PLG led to a greater incorporation of PS. Lentivirus, but not adenovirus, associated with PS-PLG microspheres, and binding was specific to PS relative to PLG alone or PLG modified with phosphatidylcholine. Immobilized lentivirus produced large numbers of transduced cells, and increased transgene expression relative to virus alone. Microspheres were subsequently formed into porous tissue engineering scaffolds, with retention of lentivirus binding. Lentivirus immobilization resulted in long-term and localized expression within a subcutaneously implanted scaffold. Microspheres were also formed into multiple channel bridges for implantation into the spinal cord. Lentivirus delivery from the bridge produced maximal expression at the implant and a gradient of expression rostrally and caudally. This specific binding of lentiviral vectors to biomaterial scaffolds may provide a versatile tool for numerous applications in regenerative medicine or within model systems that investigate tissue development. PMID:20206382

  13. Integrative data-mining tools to link gene and function.

    PubMed

    El Yacoubi, Basma; de Crécy-Lagard, Valérie

    2014-01-01

    Information derived from genomic and post-genomic data can be efficiently used to link gene and function. Several web-based platforms have been developed to mine these types of data by integrating different tools. This method paper is designed to allow the user to navigate these platforms in order to make functional predictions. The main focus is on phylogenetic distribution and physical clustering tools, but other tools such as pathway reconstruction, gene fusions, and analysis of high-throughput experimental data are also surveyed.

  14. Gene transfer and mutagenesis mediated by Sleeping Beauty transposon in Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus).

    PubMed

    He, Xiaozhen; Li, Jie; Long, Yong; Song, Guili; Zhou, Peiyong; Liu, Qiuxiang; Zhu, Zuoyan; Cui, Zongbin

    2013-10-01

    The success of gene transfer has been demonstrated in many of vertebrate species, whereas the efficiency of producing transgenic animals remains pretty low due to the random integration of foreign genes into a recipient genome. The Sleeping Beauty (SB) transposon is able to improve the efficiency of gene transfer in zebrafish and mouse, but its activity in tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) has yet to be characterized. Herein, we demonstrate the potential of using the SB transposon system as an effective tool for gene transfer and insertional mutagenesis in tilapia. A transgenic construct pT2/tiHsp70-SB11 was generated by subcloning the promoter of tilapia heat shock protein 70 (tiHsp70) gene, the SB11 transposase gene and the carp β-actin gene polyadenylation signal into the second generation of SB transposon. Transgenic tilapia was produced by microinjection of this construct with in vitro synthesized capped SB11 mRNA. SB11 transposon was detected in 28.89 % of founders, 12.9 % of F1 and 43.75 % of F2. Analysis of genomic sequences flanking integrated transposons indicates that this transgenic tilapia line carries two copies of SB transposon, which landed into two different endogenous genes. Induced expression of SB11 gene after heat shock was detected using reverse transcription PCR in F2 transgenic individuals. In addition, the Cre/loxP system was introduced to delete the SB11 cassette for stabilization of gene interruption and bio-safety. These findings suggest that the SB transposon system is active and can be used for efficient gene transfer and insertional mutagenesis in tilapia.

  15. Horizontal functional gene transfer from bacteria to fishes.

    PubMed

    Sun, Bao-Fa; Li, Tong; Xiao, Jin-Hua; Jia, Ling-Yi; Liu, Li; Zhang, Peng; Murphy, Robert W; He, Shun-Min; Huang, Da-Wei

    2015-12-22

    Invertebrates can acquire functional genes via horizontal gene transfer (HGT) from bacteria but fishes are not known to do so. We provide the first reliable evidence of one HGT event from marine bacteria to fishes. The HGT appears to have occurred after emergence of the teleosts. The transferred gene is expressed and regulated developmentally. Its successful integration and expression may change the genetic and metabolic repertoire of fishes. In addition, this gene contains conserved domains and similar tertiary structures in fishes and their putative donor bacteria. Thus, it may function similarly in both groups. Evolutionary analyses indicate that it evolved under purifying selection, further indicating its conserved function. We document the first likely case of HGT of functional gene from prokaryote to fishes. This discovery certifies that HGT can influence vertebrate evolution.

  16. Horizontal functional gene transfer from bacteria to fishes

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Bao-Fa; Li, Tong; Xiao, Jin-Hua; Jia, Ling-Yi; Liu, Li; Zhang, Peng; Murphy, Robert W.; He, Shun-Min; Huang, Da-Wei

    2015-01-01

    Invertebrates can acquire functional genes via horizontal gene transfer (HGT) from bacteria but fishes are not known to do so. We provide the first reliable evidence of one HGT event from marine bacteria to fishes. The HGT appears to have occurred after emergence of the teleosts. The transferred gene is expressed and regulated developmentally. Its successful integration and expression may change the genetic and metabolic repertoire of fishes. In addition, this gene contains conserved domains and similar tertiary structures in fishes and their putative donor bacteria. Thus, it may function similarly in both groups. Evolutionary analyses indicate that it evolved under purifying selection, further indicating its conserved function. We document the first likely case of HGT of functional gene from prokaryote to fishes. This discovery certifies that HGT can influence vertebrate evolution. PMID:26691285

  17. Transferred interbacterial antagonism genes augment eukaryotic innate immune function.

    PubMed

    Chou, Seemay; Daugherty, Matthew D; Peterson, S Brook; Biboy, Jacob; Yang, Youyun; Jutras, Brandon L; Fritz-Laylin, Lillian K; Ferrin, Michael A; Harding, Brittany N; Jacobs-Wagner, Christine; Yang, X Frank; Vollmer, Waldemar; Malik, Harmit S; Mougous, Joseph D

    2015-02-05

    Horizontal gene transfer allows organisms to rapidly acquire adaptive traits. Although documented instances of horizontal gene transfer from bacteria to eukaryotes remain rare, bacteria represent a rich source of new functions potentially available for co-option. One benefit that genes of bacterial origin could provide to eukaryotes is the capacity to produce antibacterials, which have evolved in prokaryotes as the result of eons of interbacterial competition. The type VI secretion amidase effector (Tae) proteins are potent bacteriocidal enzymes that degrade the cell wall when delivered into competing bacterial cells by the type VI secretion system. Here we show that tae genes have been transferred to eukaryotes on at least six occasions, and that the resulting domesticated amidase effector (dae) genes have been preserved for hundreds of millions of years through purifying selection. We show that the dae genes acquired eukaryotic secretion signals, are expressed within recipient organisms, and encode active antibacterial toxins that possess substrate specificity matching extant Tae proteins of the same lineage. Finally, we show that a dae gene in the deer tick Ixodes scapularis limits proliferation of Borrelia burgdorferi, the aetiologic agent of Lyme disease. Our work demonstrates that a family of horizontally acquired toxins honed to mediate interbacterial antagonism confers previously undescribed antibacterial capacity to eukaryotes. We speculate that the selective pressure imposed by competition between bacteria has produced a reservoir of genes encoding diverse antimicrobial functions that are tailored for co-option by eukaryotic innate immune systems.

  18. Occurrence and expression of gene transfer agent genes in marine bacterioplankton.

    PubMed

    Biers, Erin J; Wang, Kui; Pennington, Catherine; Belas, Robert; Chen, Feng; Moran, Mary Ann

    2008-05-01

    Genes with homology to the transduction-like gene transfer agent (GTA) were observed in genome sequences of three cultured members of the marine Roseobacter clade. A broader search for homologs for this host-controlled virus-like gene transfer system identified likely GTA systems in cultured Alphaproteobacteria, and particularly in marine bacterioplankton representatives. Expression of GTA genes and extracellular release of GTA particles ( approximately 50 to 70 nm) was demonstrated experimentally for the Roseobacter clade member Silicibacter pomeroyi DSS-3, and intraspecific gene transfer was documented. GTA homologs are surprisingly infrequent in marine metagenomic sequence data, however, and the role of this lateral gene transfer mechanism in ocean bacterioplankton communities remains unclear.

  19. Shock wave induced sonoporation and gene transfer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miller, Douglas L.

    2003-10-01

    During shockwave (SW) treatment, cavitation activity can be applied for cell killing. A bonus is that some surviving cells appear to be briefly permeabilized, or sonoporated, allowing them to take up large molecules including DNA. In vitro research has indicated that as the number of SW increased, survival declined exponentially but the number of sonoporated cells increased to better than 50% of survivors for 1000 SW. In vivo tests have demonstrated SW-induced tumor ablation could indeed be accompanied by the transfection of marker plasmids into mouse B16 melanoma tumors in vivo. With intratumor injection of plasmid DNA and air bubbles, significant results were obtained for only 400 SW. In a trial of cancer therapy, the effects of 500 SW combined with interleukin-12 immuno-gene therapy was observed on the progression of two mouse tumors, B16 melanoma and RENCA renal carcinoma. The combination of SW and IL-12 plasmid injection provided a statistically significant inhibition of tumor growth relative to SW alone for both tumor models, demonstrating feasibility for this treatment method. In the future, the development of intravenous gene delivery and improved transfection, together with image-guided ultrasound treatment, should lead to the clinical application of ultrasound enhanced gene therapy. [Work supported by NIH Grant No. EB002782.

  20. [Gene transfer as treatment for metabolic inherited liver diseases

    PubMed

    Godoy, J L

    2000-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To study gene transfer looking for its future clinical application in the treatment of metabolic inherited liver diseases. METHODS: Bibliographic review about the subject. RESULTS AND CONCLUSIONS: Gene transfer into the liver would be an alternative to liver transplantation to treat some inherited metabolic diseases. Various vectors have been employed for gene transfer, including retrovirus vectors, whose integration into the chromosomal DNA would allow stable long term expression of the transgene. The integration of retrovirus vectors into the genoma of the target cell is only possible during mitosis. Therefore, these vectors must be delivered during hepatic regeneration induced by partial hepatectomy, for example. Another obstacle to be overcome is the extra hepatic dissemination of retrovirus, in particular to the germinals cells, due to the risk of changing the genetical heritage of the progeniture.

  1. Recent events dominate interdomain lateral gene transfers between prokaryotes and eukaryotes and, with the exception of endosymbiotic gene transfers, few ancient transfer events persist

    PubMed Central

    Katz, Laura A.

    2015-01-01

    While there is compelling evidence for the impact of endosymbiotic gene transfer (EGT; transfer from either mitochondrion or chloroplast to the nucleus) on genome evolution in eukaryotes, the role of interdomain transfer from bacteria and/or archaea (i.e. prokaryotes) is less clear. Lateral gene transfers (LGTs) have been argued to be potential sources of phylogenetic information, particularly for reconstructing deep nodes that are difficult to recover with traditional phylogenetic methods. We sought to identify interdomain LGTs by using a phylogenomic pipeline that generated 13 465 single gene trees and included up to 487 eukaryotes, 303 bacteria and 118 archaea. Our goals include searching for LGTs that unite major eukaryotic clades, and describing the relative contributions of LGT and EGT across the eukaryotic tree of life. Given the difficulties in interpreting single gene trees that aim to capture the approximately 1.8 billion years of eukaryotic evolution, we focus on presence–absence data to identify interdomain transfer events. Specifically, we identify 1138 genes found only in prokaryotes and representatives of three or fewer major clades of eukaryotes (e.g. Amoebozoa, Archaeplastida, Excavata, Opisthokonta, SAR and orphan lineages). The majority of these genes have phylogenetic patterns that are consistent with recent interdomain LGTs and, with the notable exception of EGTs involving photosynthetic eukaryotes, we detect few ancient interdomain LGTs. These analyses suggest that LGTs have probably occurred throughout the history of eukaryotes, but that ancient events are not maintained unless they are associated with endosymbiotic gene transfer among photosynthetic lineages. PMID:26323756

  2. Transferring a synthetic gene circuit from yeast to mammalian cells.

    PubMed

    Nevozhay, Dmitry; Zal, Tomasz; Balázsi, Gábor

    2013-01-01

    The emerging field of synthetic biology builds gene circuits for scientific, industrial and therapeutic needs. Adaptability of synthetic gene circuits across different organisms could enable a synthetic biology pipeline, where circuits are designed in silico, characterized in microbes and reimplemented in mammalian settings for practical usage. However, the processes affecting gene circuit adaptability have not been systematically investigated. Here we construct a mammalian version of a negative feedback-based 'linearizer' gene circuit previously developed in yeast. The first naïve mammalian prototype was non-functional, but a computational model suggested that we could recover function by improving gene expression and protein localization. After rationally developing and combining new parts as the model suggested, we regained function and could tune target gene expression in human cells linearly and precisely as in yeast. The steps we have taken should be generally relevant for transferring any gene circuit from yeast into mammalian cells.

  3. The interconnection between biofilm formation and horizontal gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Madsen, Jonas Stenløkke; Burmølle, Mette; Hansen, Lars Hestbjerg; Sørensen, Søren Johannes

    2012-07-01

    Recent research has revealed that horizontal gene transfer and biofilm formation are connected processes. Although published research investigating this interconnectedness is still limited, we will review this subject in order to highlight the potential of these observations because of their believed importance in the understanding of the adaptation and subsequent evolution of social traits in bacteria. Here, we discuss current evidence for such interconnectedness centred on plasmids. Horizontal transfer rates are typically higher in biofilm communities compared with those in planktonic states. Biofilms, furthermore, promote plasmid stability and may enhance the host range of mobile genetic elements that are transferred horizontally. Plasmids, on the other hand, are very well suited to promote the evolution of social traits such as biofilm formation. This, essentially, transpires because plasmids are independent replicons that enhance their own success by promoting inter-bacterial interactions. They typically also carry genes that heighten their hosts' direct fitness. Furthermore, current research shows that the so-called mafia traits encoded on mobile genetic elements can enforce bacteria to maintain stable social interactions. It also indicates that horizontal gene transfer ultimately enhances the relatedness of bacteria carrying the mobile genetic elements of the same origin. The perspective of this review extends to an overall interconnectedness between horizontal gene transfer, mobile genetic elements and social evolution of bacteria.

  4. GenePANDA—a novel network-based gene prioritizing tool for complex diseases

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Tianshu; Chen, Shu; Wu, Xiaohui; Tian, Weidong

    2017-01-01

    Here we describe GenePANDA, a novel network-based tool for prioritizing candidate disease genes. GenePANDA assesses whether a gene is likely a candidate disease gene based on its relative distance to known disease genes in a functional association network. A unique feature of GenePANDA is the introduction of adjusted network distance derived by normalizing the raw network distance between two genes with their respective mean raw network distance to all other genes in the network. The use of adjusted network distance significantly improves GenePANDA’s performance on prioritizing complex disease genes. GenePANDA achieves superior performance over five previously published algorithms for prioritizing disease genes. Finally, GenePANDA can assist in prioritizing functionally important SNPs identified by GWAS. PMID:28252032

  5. Altering equine corneal fibroblast differentiation through Smad gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Marlo, Todd L; Giuliano, Elizabeth A; Tripathi, Ratnakar; Sharma, Ajay; Mohan, Rajiv R

    2017-07-06

    To explore the impact of equine corneal fibroblast (ECF) to myofibroblast (ECM) differentiation by altering the expression of the Smad genes either individually or in combination. Specifically, we sought to examine the ECF differentiation after (a) silencing of Smad2, 3, and 4 profibrotic genes individually and (b) overexpression of antifibrotic Smad7 gene and in a combination with pro- and antifibrotic Smad genes. Equine corneal fibroblast primary cultures were generated as previously described. ECFs were transfected with individual plasmids which silenced gene expression of either Smad2, 3, or 4 or in combination with a plasmid overexpressing Smad7 using Lipofectamine 2000™ or Lipofectamine BLOCK-iT™. Smad-transfected clones were then exposed to TGF-β1 to induce differentiation to myofibroblasts. Immunofluorescence and qRT-PCR techniques quantified levels of ECF differentiation to ECM by measuring alpha smooth muscle actin, a known marker of ECM transdifferentiation. Silencing of individual Smad2, 3, or 4 genes or overexpression of Smad7 showed significant inhibition of ECF transdifferentiation (73-83% reduction). Silencing of Smad2 showed the greatest inhibition of ECF transdifferentiation in (a) and was therefore utilized for the combination gene transfer testing. The combination gene transfer consisting of Smad7 overexpression and Smad2 silencing attenuated ECF differentiation significantly; however, the level was not significant compared to the overexpression of Smad7 individually. Using gene transfer technology involving profibrotic Smad silencing, antifibrotic Smad overexpression or its combination is a novel strategy to control TGF-β1-mediated fibrosis in equine fibroblasts. Combination gene therapy was not better than single gene therapy in this study. © 2017 American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists.

  6. [Gene doping: gene transfer and possible molecular detection].

    PubMed

    Argüelles, Carlos Francisco; Hernández-Zamora, Edgar

    2007-01-01

    The use of illegal substances in sports to enhance athletic performance during competition has caused international sports organizations such as the COI and WADA to take anti doping measures. A new doping method know as gene doping is defined as "the non-therapeutic use of genes, genetic elements and/or cells that have the capacity to enhance athletic performance". However, gene doping in sports is not easily identified and can cause serious consequences. Molecular biology techniques are needed in order to distinguish the difference between a "normal" and an "altered" genome. Further, we need to develop new analytic methods and biological molecular techniques in anti-doping laboratories, and design programs that avoid the non therapeutic use of genes.

  7. Antibacterial gene transfer across the tree of life

    PubMed Central

    Metcalf, Jason A; Funkhouser-Jones, Lisa J; Brileya, Kristen; Reysenbach, Anna-Louise; Bordenstein, Seth R

    2014-01-01

    Though horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is widespread, genes and taxa experience biased rates of transferability. Curiously, independent transmission of homologous DNA to archaea, bacteria, eukaryotes, and viruses is extremely rare and often defies ecological and functional explanations. Here, we demonstrate that a bacterial lysozyme family integrated independently in all domains of life across diverse environments, generating the only glycosyl hydrolase 25 muramidases in plants and archaea. During coculture of a hydrothermal vent archaeon with a bacterial competitor, muramidase transcription is upregulated. Moreover, recombinant lysozyme exhibits broad-spectrum antibacterial action in a dose-dependent manner. Similar to bacterial transfer of antibiotic resistance genes, transfer of a potent antibacterial gene across the universal tree seemingly bestows a niche-transcending adaptation that trumps the barriers against parallel HGT to all domains. The discoveries also comprise the first characterization of an antibacterial gene in archaea and support the pursuit of antibiotics in this underexplored group. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.04266.001 PMID:25422936

  8. Replacing and Additive Horizontal Gene Transfer in Streptococcus

    PubMed Central

    Choi, Sang Chul; Rasmussen, Matthew D.; Hubisz, Melissa J.; Gronau, Ilan; Stanhope, Michael J.; Siepel, Adam

    2012-01-01

    The prominent role of Horizontal Gene Transfer (HGT) in the evolution of bacteria is now well documented, but few studies have differentiated between evolutionary events that predominantly cause genes in one lineage to be replaced by homologs from another lineage (“replacing HGT”) and events that result in the addition of substantial new genomic material (“additive HGT”). Here in, we make use of the distinct phylogenetic signatures of replacing and additive HGTs in a genome-wide study of the important human pathogen Streptococcus pyogenes (SPY) and its close relatives S. dysgalactiae subspecies equisimilis (SDE) and S. dysgalactiae subspecies dysgalactiae (SDD). Using recently developed statistical models and computational methods, we find evidence for abundant gene flow of both kinds within each of the SPY and SDE clades and of reduced levels of exchange between SPY and SDD. In addition, our analysis strongly supports a pronounced asymmetry in SPY–SDE gene flow, favoring the SPY-to-SDE direction. This finding is of particular interest in light of the recent increase in virulence of pathogenic SDE. We find much stronger evidence for SPY–SDE gene flow among replacing than among additive transfers, suggesting a primary influence from homologous recombination between co-occurring SPY and SDE cells in human hosts. Putative virulence genes are correlated with transfer events, but this correlation is found to be driven by additive, not replacing, HGTs. The genes affected by additive HGTs are enriched for functions having to do with transposition, recombination, and DNA integration, consistent with previous findings, whereas replacing HGTs seen to influence a more diverse set of genes. Additive transfers are also found to be associated with evidence of positive selection. These findings shed new light on the manner in which HGT has shaped pathogenic bacterial genomes. PMID:22617954

  9. Horizontal gene transfer in the human gastrointestinal tract: potential spread of antibiotic resistance genes

    PubMed Central

    Huddleston, Jennifer R

    2014-01-01

    Bacterial infections are becoming increasingly difficult to treat due to widespread antibiotic resistance among pathogens. This review aims to give an overview of the major horizontal transfer mechanisms and their evolution and then demonstrate the human lower gastrointestinal tract as an environment in which horizontal gene transfer of resistance determinants occurs. Finally, implications for antibiotic usage and the development of resistant infections and persistence of antibiotic resistance genes in populations as a result of horizontal gene transfer in the large intestine will be discussed. PMID:25018641

  10. Viral mediated gene transfer to sprouting blood vessels during angiogenesis.

    PubMed

    Alian, Akram; Eldor, Amiram; Falk, Haya; Panet, Amos

    2002-08-01

    Several experimental systems have been applied to investigate the development of new blood vessels. Angiogenesis can be followed ex-vivo by culturing explants of rat aorta 'rings' in biomatrix gels. This angiogenesis system was modified for the study of viral vector mediated gene transfer, using adenovirus, vaccinia- and retroviral vectors. Two modifications were introduced to the model in order to facilitate efficient viral mediated gene transfer, (i) placing the aorta ring on top of a thin layer of collagen such that the angiogenic tissue will be accessible to the viral vector; and (ii) infection of the aorta rings prior to embedding them into the collagen matrix. While adenovirus and vaccinia vectors infected efficiently the aorta rings they induced cell death. Subsequent gene transfer experiments were, therefore, carried with retroviral vectors containing vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and the beta-interferon (IFN) genes. Overexpression of VEGF enhanced significantly microvessel sprouting, while overexpression of IFN-beta induced an antiviral effect. The experimental system described in this study can facilitate the application of other viral vectors to the study of genes that may regulate the complex angiogenic process and thereby open new avenues for vascular gene therapy.

  11. Systematic inference of highways of horizontal gene transfer in prokaryotes.

    PubMed

    Bansal, Mukul S; Banay, Guy; Harlow, Timothy J; Gogarten, J Peter; Shamir, Ron

    2013-03-01

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) plays a crucial role in the evolution of prokaryotic species. Typically, no more than a few genes are horizontally transferred between any two species. However, several studies identified pairs of species (or linages) between which many different genes were horizontally transferred. Such a pair is said to be linked by a highway of gene sharing. Inferring such highways is crucial to understanding the evolution of prokaryotes and for inferring past symbiotic and ecological associations among different species. We present a new improved method for systematically detecting highways of gene sharing. As we demonstrate using a variety of simulated datasets, our method is highly accurate and efficient, and robust to noise and high rates of HGT. We further validate our method by applying it to a published dataset of >22 000 gene trees from 144 prokaryotic species. Our method makes it practical, for the first time, to perform accurate highway analysis quickly and easily even on large datasets with high rates of HGT. An implementation of the method can be freely downloaded from: http://acgt.cs.tau.ac.il/hide.

  12. Gene Transfer in Mycobacterium tuberculosis: Shuttle Phasmids to Enlightenment

    PubMed Central

    JACOBS, WILLIAM R.

    2016-01-01

    Infectious diseases have plagued humankind throughout history and have posed serious public health problems. Yet vaccines have eradicated smallpox and antibiotics have drastically decreased the mortality rate of many infectious agents. These remarkable successes in the control of infections came from knowing the causative agents of the diseases, followed by serendipitous discoveries of attenuated viruses and antibiotics. The discovery of DNA as genetic material and the understanding of how this information translates into specific phenotypes have changed the paradigm for developing new vaccines, drugs, and diagnostic tests. Knowledge of the mechanisms of immunity and mechanisms of action of drugs has led to new vaccines and new antimicrobial agents. The key to the acquisition of the knowledge of these mechanisms has been identifying the elemental causes (i.e., genes and their products) that mediate immunity and drug resistance. The identification of these genes is made possible by being able to transfer the genes or mutated forms of the genes into causative agents or surrogate hosts. Such an approach was limited in Mycobacterium tuberculosis by the difficulty of transferring genes or alleles into M. tuberculosis or a suitable surrogate mycobacterial host. The construction of shuttle phasmids—chimeric molecules that replicate in Escherichia coli as plasmids and in mycobacteria as mycobacteriophages—was instrumental in developing gene transfer systems for M. tuberculosis. This review will discuss M. tuberculosis genetic systems and their impact on tuberculosis research. “I had to know my enemy in order to prevail against him.”Nelson Mandela PMID:26105819

  13. Horizontal gene transfer in eukaryotes: The weak-link model

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Jinling

    2013-01-01

    The significance of horizontal gene transfer (HGT) in eukaryotic evolution remains controversial. Although many eukaryotic genes are of bacterial origin, they are often interpreted as being derived from mitochondria or plastids. Because of their fixed gene pool and gene loss, however, mitochondria and plastids alone cannot adequately explain the presence of all, or even the majority, of bacterial genes in eukaryotes. Available data indicate that no insurmountable barrier to HGT exists, even in complex multicellular eukaryotes. In addition, the discovery of both recent and ancient HGT events in all major eukaryotic groups suggests that HGT has been a regular occurrence throughout the history of eukaryotic evolution. A model of HGT is proposed that suggests both unicellular and early developmental stages as likely entry points for foreign genes into multicellular eukaryotes. PMID:24037739

  14. Horizontal gene transfer in eukaryotes: the weak-link model.

    PubMed

    Huang, Jinling

    2013-10-01

    The significance of horizontal gene transfer (HGT) in eukaryotic evolution remains controversial. Although many eukaryotic genes are of bacterial origin, they are often interpreted as being derived from mitochondria or plastids. Because of their fixed gene pool and gene loss, however, mitochondria and plastids alone cannot adequately explain the presence of all, or even the majority, of bacterial genes in eukaryotes. Available data indicate that no insurmountable barrier to HGT exists, even in complex multicellular eukaryotes. In addition, the discovery of both recent and ancient HGT events in all major eukaryotic groups suggests that HGT has been a regular occurrence throughout the history of eukaryotic evolution. A model of HGT is proposed that suggests both unicellular and early developmental stages as likely entry points for foreign genes into multicellular eukaryotes.

  15. WhichGenes: a web-based tool for gathering, building, storing and exporting gene sets with application in gene set enrichment analysis.

    PubMed

    Glez-Peña, Daniel; Gómez-López, Gonzalo; Pisano, David G; Fdez-Riverola, Florentino

    2009-07-01

    WhichGenes is a web-based interactive gene set building tool offering a very simple interface to extract always-updated gene lists from multiple databases and unstructured biological data sources. While the user can specify new gene sets of interest by following a simple four-step wizard, the tool is able to run several queries in parallel. Every time a new set is generated, it is automatically added to the private gene-set cart and the user is notified by an e-mail containing a direct link to the new set stored in the server. WhichGenes provides functionalities to edit, delete and rename existing sets as well as the capability of generating new ones by combining previous existing sets (intersection, union and difference operators). The user can export his sets configuring the output format and selecting among multiple gene identifiers. In addition to the user-friendly environment, WhichGenes allows programmers to access its functionalities in a programmatic way through a Representational State Transfer web service. WhichGenes front-end is freely available at http://www.whichgenes.org/, WhichGenes API is accessible at http://www.whichgenes.org/api/.

  16. Bacterial Genes in the Aphid Genome: Absence of Functional Gene Transfer from Buchnera to Its Host

    PubMed Central

    Nikoh, Naruo; McCutcheon, John P.; Kudo, Toshiaki; Miyagishima, Shin-ya; Moran, Nancy A.; Nakabachi, Atsushi

    2010-01-01

    Genome reduction is typical of obligate symbionts. In cellular organelles, this reduction partly reflects transfer of ancestral bacterial genes to the host genome, but little is known about gene transfer in other obligate symbioses. Aphids harbor anciently acquired obligate mutualists, Buchnera aphidicola (Gammaproteobacteria), which have highly reduced genomes (420–650 kb), raising the possibility of gene transfer from ancestral Buchnera to the aphid genome. In addition, aphids often harbor other bacteria that also are potential sources of transferred genes. Previous limited sampling of genes expressed in bacteriocytes, the specialized cells that harbor Buchnera, revealed that aphids acquired at least two genes from bacteria. The newly sequenced genome of the pea aphid, Acyrthosiphon pisum, presents the first opportunity for a complete inventory of genes transferred from bacteria to the host genome in the context of an ancient obligate symbiosis. Computational screening of the entire A. pisum genome, followed by phylogenetic and experimental analyses, provided strong support for the transfer of 12 genes or gene fragments from bacteria to the aphid genome: three LD–carboxypeptidases (LdcA1, LdcA2,ψLdcA), five rare lipoprotein As (RlpA1-5), N-acetylmuramoyl-L-alanine amidase (AmiD), 1,4-beta-N-acetylmuramidase (bLys), DNA polymerase III alpha chain (ψDnaE), and ATP synthase delta chain (ψAtpH). Buchnera was the apparent source of two highly truncated pseudogenes (ψDnaE and ψAtpH). Most other transferred genes were closely related to genes from relatives of Wolbachia (Alphaproteobacteria). At least eight of the transferred genes (LdcA1, AmiD, RlpA1-5, bLys) appear to be functional, and expression of seven (LdcA1, AmiD, RlpA1-5) are highly upregulated in bacteriocytes. The LdcAs and RlpAs appear to have been duplicated after transfer. Our results excluded the hypothesis that genome reduction in Buchnera has been accompanied by gene transfer to the host

  17. Antibiotics and gene transfer in swine gut bacteria

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    The mammalian gastrointestinal (GI) tract hosts a diverse collection bacteria, most of which are beneficial for host health. This bacterial community also supports a community of viruses that infect bacteria (called bacteriophages or phages). Phages transfer genes between bacteria, and phage-media...

  18. Quasispecies theory for horizontal gene transfer and recombination

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muñoz, Enrique; Park, Jeong-Man; Deem, Michael W.

    2008-12-01

    We introduce a generalization of the parallel, or Crow-Kimura, and Eigen models of molecular evolution to represent the exchange of genetic information between individuals in a population. We study the effect of different schemes of genetic recombination on the steady-state mean fitness and distribution of individuals in the population, through an analytic field theoretic mapping. We investigate both horizontal gene transfer from a population and recombination between pairs of individuals. Somewhat surprisingly, these nonlinear generalizations of quasispecies theory to modern biology are analytically solvable. For two-parent recombination, we find two selected phases, one of which is spectrally rigid. We present exact analytical formulas for the equilibrium mean fitness of the population, in terms of a maximum principle, which are generally applicable to any permutation invariant replication rate function. For smooth fitness landscapes, we show that when positive epistatic interactions are present, recombination or horizontal gene transfer introduces a mild load against selection. Conversely, if the fitness landscape exhibits negative epistasis, horizontal gene transfer or recombination introduces an advantage by enhancing selection towards the fittest genotypes. These results prove that the mutational deterministic hypothesis holds for quasispecies models. For the discontinuous single sharp peak fitness landscape, we show that horizontal gene transfer has no effect on the fitness, while recombination decreases the fitness, for both the parallel and the Eigen models. We present numerical and analytical results as well as phase diagrams for the different cases.

  19. "Active" cancer immunotherapy by anti-Met antibody gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Vigna, Elisa; Pacchiana, Giovanni; Mazzone, Massimiliano; Chiriaco, Cristina; Fontani, Lara; Basilico, Cristina; Pennacchietti, Selma; Comoglio, Paolo M

    2008-11-15

    Gene therapy provides a still poorly explored opportunity to treat cancer by "active" immunotherapy as it enables the transfer of genes encoding antibodies directed against specific oncogenic proteins. By a bidirectional lentiviral vector, we transferred the cDNA encoding the heavy and light chains of a monoclonal anti-Met antibody (DN-30) to epithelial cancer cells. In vitro, the transduced cells synthesized and secreted correctly assembled antibodies with the expected high affinity, inducing down-regulation of the Met receptor and strong inhibition of the invasive growth response. The inhibitory activity resulted (a) from the interference of the antibody with the Met receptor intracellular processing ("cell autonomous activity," in cis) and (b) from the antibody-induced cleavage of Met expressed at the cell surface ("bystander effect," in trans). The monoclonal antibody gene transferred into live animals by systemic administration or by local intratumor delivery resulted in substantial inhibition of tumor growth. These data provide proof of concept both for targeting the Met receptor and for a gene transfer-based immunotherapy strategy.

  20. Horizontal gene transfer and the evolution of methanogenic pathways.

    PubMed

    Fournier, Greg

    2009-01-01

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is a driving force in the evolution of metabolic pathways, allowing novel enzymatic functions that provide a selective advantage to be rapidly incorporated into an organism's physiology. Here, the role of two HGT events in the evolution of methanogenesis is described. First, the acetoclastic sub-pathway of methanogenesis is shown to have evolved via a transfer of the ackA and pta genes from a cellulolytic clostridia to a family of methanogenic archaea. Second, the system for encoding the amino acid pyrrolysine, used for the synthesis of enzymes for methanogenesis from methylamines, is shown to likely have evolved via transfer from an ancient, unknown, deeply branching organismal lineage.

  1. Biased gene transfer mimics patterns created through shared ancestry

    PubMed Central

    Andam, Cheryl P.; Williams, David; Gogarten, J. Peter

    2010-01-01

    In phylogenetic reconstruction, two types of bacterial tyrosyl-tRNA synthetases (TyrRS) form distinct clades with many bacterial phyla represented in both clades. Very few taxa possess both forms, and maximum likelihood analysis of the distribution of TyrRS types suggests horizontal gene transfer (HGT), rather than an ancient duplication followed by differential gene loss, as the contributor to the evolutionary history of TyrRS in bacteria. However, for each TyrRS type, phylogenetic reconstruction yields phylogenies similar to the ribosomal phylogeny, revealing that frequent gene transfer has not destroyed the expected phylogeny; rather, the expected phylogenetic signal was reinforced or even created by HGT. We show that biased HGT can mimic patterns created through shared ancestry by in silico simulation. Furthermore, in cases where genomic synteny is sufficient to allow comparisons of relative gene positions, both tyrRS types occupy equivalent positions in closely related genomes, rejecting the loss hypothesis. Although the two types of bacterial TyrRS are only distantly related and only rarely coexist in a single genome, they have many features in common with alleles that are swapped between related lineages. We propose to label these functionally similar homologs as homeoalleles. We conclude that the observed phylogenetic pattern reflects both vertical inheritance and biased HGT and that the signal caused by common organismal descent is difficult to distinguish from the signal due to biased gene transfer. PMID:20495090

  2. Biased gene transfer mimics patterns created through shared ancestry.

    PubMed

    Andam, Cheryl P; Williams, David; Gogarten, J Peter

    2010-06-08

    In phylogenetic reconstruction, two types of bacterial tyrosyl-tRNA synthetases (TyrRS) form distinct clades with many bacterial phyla represented in both clades. Very few taxa possess both forms, and maximum likelihood analysis of the distribution of TyrRS types suggests horizontal gene transfer (HGT), rather than an ancient duplication followed by differential gene loss, as the contributor to the evolutionary history of TyrRS in bacteria. However, for each TyrRS type, phylogenetic reconstruction yields phylogenies similar to the ribosomal phylogeny, revealing that frequent gene transfer has not destroyed the expected phylogeny; rather, the expected phylogenetic signal was reinforced or even created by HGT. We show that biased HGT can mimic patterns created through shared ancestry by in silico simulation. Furthermore, in cases where genomic synteny is sufficient to allow comparisons of relative gene positions, both tyrRS types occupy equivalent positions in closely related genomes, rejecting the loss hypothesis. Although the two types of bacterial TyrRS are only distantly related and only rarely coexist in a single genome, they have many features in common with alleles that are swapped between related lineages. We propose to label these functionally similar homologs as homeoalleles. We conclude that the observed phylogenetic pattern reflects both vertical inheritance and biased HGT and that the signal caused by common organismal descent is difficult to distinguish from the signal due to biased gene transfer.

  3. Manufacturing process applications team (MATEAM). [technology transfer in the areas of machine tools and robots

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1979-01-01

    The transfer of NASA technology to the industrial sector is reported. Presentations to the machine tool and robot industries and direct technology transfers of the Adams Manipulator arm, a-c motor control, and the bolt tension monitor are discussed. A listing of proposed RTOP programs with strong potential is included. A detailed description of the rotor technology available to industry is given.

  4. Quartet analysis of putative horizontal gene transfer in Crenarchaeota.

    PubMed

    Ching, Travers H; Yoza, Brandon A; Li, Qing X

    2014-02-01

    Horizontal gene transfers (HGT) between four Crenarchaeota species (Metallosphaera cuprina Ar-4T, Acidianus hospitalis W1T, Vulcanisaeta moutnovskia 768-28T, and Pyrobaculum islandicum DSM 4184T) were investigated with quartet analysis. Strong support was found for individual genes that disagree with the phylogeny of the majority, implying genomic mosaicism. One such gene, a ferredoxin-related gene, was investigated further and incorporated into a larger phylogeny, which provided evidence for HGT of this gene from the Vulcanisaeta lineage to the Acidianus lineage. This is the first application of quartet analysis of HGT for the phylum Crenarchaeota. The results have shown that quartet analysis is a powerful technique to screen homologous sequences for putative HGTs and is useful in visually describing genomic mosaicism and HGT within four taxa.

  5. Rescuing the Failing Heart by Targeted Gene Transfer

    PubMed Central

    Kawase, Yoshiaki; Ladage, Dennis; Hajjar, Roger J.

    2011-01-01

    Congestive heart failure is a major cause of morbidity and mortality in the US. While progress in conventional treatments is making steady and incremental gains to reduce heart failure mortality, there is a critical need to explore new therapeutic approaches. Gene therapy was initially applied in the clinical setting for inherited monogenic disorders. It is now apparent that gene therapy has broader potential that also includes acquired polygenic diseases, such as congestive heart failure. Recent advances in understanding of the molecular basis of myocardial dysfunction, together with the evolution of increasingly efficient gene transfer technology, has placed heart failure within reach of gene-based therapy. Furthermore, the recent successful and safe completion of a phase 2 trial targeting the sarcoplasmic reticulum calcium ATPase pump (SERCA2a) along with the start of more recent phase 1 trials usher a new era for gene therapy for the treatment of heart failure. PMID:21371634

  6. Endosymbiotic gene transfer from prokaryotic pangenomes: Inherited chimerism in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Ku, Chuan; Nelson-Sathi, Shijulal; Roettger, Mayo; Garg, Sriram; Hazkani-Covo, Einat; Martin, William F

    2015-08-18

    Endosymbiotic theory in eukaryotic-cell evolution rests upon a foundation of three cornerstone partners--the plastid (a cyanobacterium), the mitochondrion (a proteobacterium), and its host (an archaeon)--and carries a corollary that, over time, the majority of genes once present in the organelle genomes were relinquished to the chromosomes of the host (endosymbiotic gene transfer). However, notwithstanding eukaryote-specific gene inventions, single-gene phylogenies have never traced eukaryotic genes to three single prokaryotic sources, an issue that hinges crucially upon factors influencing phylogenetic inference. In the age of genomes, single-gene trees, once used to test the predictions of endosymbiotic theory, now spawn new theories that stand to eventually replace endosymbiotic theory with descriptive, gene tree-based variants featuring supernumerary symbionts: prokaryotic partners distinct from the cornerstone trio and whose existence is inferred solely from single-gene trees. We reason that the endosymbiotic ancestors of mitochondria and chloroplasts brought into the eukaryotic--and plant and algal--lineage a genome-sized sample of genes from the proteobacterial and cyanobacterial pangenomes of their respective day and that, even if molecular phylogeny were artifact-free, sampling prokaryotic pangenomes through endosymbiotic gene transfer would lead to inherited chimerism. Recombination in prokaryotes (transduction, conjugation, transformation) differs from recombination in eukaryotes (sex). Prokaryotic recombination leads to pangenomes, and eukaryotic recombination leads to vertical inheritance. Viewed from the perspective of endosymbiotic theory, the critical transition at the eukaryote origin that allowed escape from Muller's ratchet--the origin of eukaryotic recombination, or sex--might have required surprisingly little evolutionary innovation.

  7. Endosymbiotic gene transfer from prokaryotic pangenomes: Inherited chimerism in eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Ku, Chuan; Nelson-Sathi, Shijulal; Roettger, Mayo; Garg, Sriram; Hazkani-Covo, Einat; Martin, William F.

    2015-01-01

    Endosymbiotic theory in eukaryotic-cell evolution rests upon a foundation of three cornerstone partners—the plastid (a cyanobacterium), the mitochondrion (a proteobacterium), and its host (an archaeon)—and carries a corollary that, over time, the majority of genes once present in the organelle genomes were relinquished to the chromosomes of the host (endosymbiotic gene transfer). However, notwithstanding eukaryote-specific gene inventions, single-gene phylogenies have never traced eukaryotic genes to three single prokaryotic sources, an issue that hinges crucially upon factors influencing phylogenetic inference. In the age of genomes, single-gene trees, once used to test the predictions of endosymbiotic theory, now spawn new theories that stand to eventually replace endosymbiotic theory with descriptive, gene tree-based variants featuring supernumerary symbionts: prokaryotic partners distinct from the cornerstone trio and whose existence is inferred solely from single-gene trees. We reason that the endosymbiotic ancestors of mitochondria and chloroplasts brought into the eukaryotic—and plant and algal—lineage a genome-sized sample of genes from the proteobacterial and cyanobacterial pangenomes of their respective day and that, even if molecular phylogeny were artifact-free, sampling prokaryotic pangenomes through endosymbiotic gene transfer would lead to inherited chimerism. Recombination in prokaryotes (transduction, conjugation, transformation) differs from recombination in eukaryotes (sex). Prokaryotic recombination leads to pangenomes, and eukaryotic recombination leads to vertical inheritance. Viewed from the perspective of endosymbiotic theory, the critical transition at the eukaryote origin that allowed escape from Muller’s ratchet—the origin of eukaryotic recombination, or sex—might have required surprisingly little evolutionary innovation. PMID:25733873

  8. Kidney-specific transposon-mediated gene transfer in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Woodard, Lauren E.; Cheng, Jizhong; Welch, Richard C.; Williams, Felisha M.; Luo, Wentian; Gewin, Leslie S.; Wilson, Matthew H.

    2017-01-01

    Methods enabling kidney-specific gene transfer in adult mice are needed to develop new therapies for kidney disease. We attempted kidney-specific gene transfer following hydrodynamic tail vein injection using the kidney-specific podocin and gamma-glutamyl transferase promoters, but found expression primarily in the liver. In order to achieve kidney-specific transgene expression, we tested direct hydrodynamic injection of a DNA solution into the renal pelvis and found that luciferase expression was strong in the kidney and absent from extra-renal tissues. We observed heterogeneous, low-level transfection of the collecting duct, proximal tubule, distal tubule, interstitial cells, and rarely glomerular cells following injection. To assess renal injury, we performed the renal pelvis injections on uninephrectomised mice and found that their blood urea nitrogen was elevated at two days post-transfer but resolved within two weeks. Although luciferase expression quickly decreased following renal pelvis injection, the use of the piggyBac transposon system improved long-term expression. Immunosuppression with cyclophosphamide stabilised luciferase expression, suggesting immune clearance of the transfected cells occurs in immunocompetent animals. Injection of a transposon expressing erythropoietin raised the haematocrit, indicating that the developed injection technique can elicit a biologic effect in vivo. Hydrodynamic renal pelvis injection enables transposon mediated-kidney specific gene transfer in adult mice. PMID:28317878

  9. Lateral gene transfer, bacterial genome evolution, and the Anthropocene.

    PubMed

    Gillings, Michael R

    2017-02-01

    Lateral gene transfer (LGT) has significantly influenced bacterial evolution since the origins of life. It helped bacteria generate flexible, mosaic genomes and enables individual cells to rapidly acquire adaptive phenotypes. In turn, this allowed bacteria to mount strong defenses against human attempts to control their growth. The widespread dissemination of genes conferring resistance to antimicrobial agents has precipitated a crisis for modern medicine. Our actions can promote increased rates of LGT and also provide selective forces to fix such events in bacterial populations. For instance, the use of selective agents induces the bacterial SOS response, which stimulates LGT. We create hotspots for lateral transfer, such as wastewater systems, hospitals, and animal production facilities. Conduits of gene transfer between humans and animals ensure rapid dissemination of recent transfer events, as does modern transport and globalization. As resistance to antibacterial compounds becomes universal, there is likely to be increasing selection pressure for phenotypes with adverse consequences for human welfare, such as enhanced virulence, pathogenicity, and transmission. Improved understanding of the ecology of LGT could help us devise strategies to control this fundamental evolutionary process. © 2016 New York Academy of Sciences.

  10. Kidney-specific transposon-mediated gene transfer in vivo.

    PubMed

    Woodard, Lauren E; Cheng, Jizhong; Welch, Richard C; Williams, Felisha M; Luo, Wentian; Gewin, Leslie S; Wilson, Matthew H

    2017-03-20

    Methods enabling kidney-specific gene transfer in adult mice are needed to develop new therapies for kidney disease. We attempted kidney-specific gene transfer following hydrodynamic tail vein injection using the kidney-specific podocin and gamma-glutamyl transferase promoters, but found expression primarily in the liver. In order to achieve kidney-specific transgene expression, we tested direct hydrodynamic injection of a DNA solution into the renal pelvis and found that luciferase expression was strong in the kidney and absent from extra-renal tissues. We observed heterogeneous, low-level transfection of the collecting duct, proximal tubule, distal tubule, interstitial cells, and rarely glomerular cells following injection. To assess renal injury, we performed the renal pelvis injections on uninephrectomised mice and found that their blood urea nitrogen was elevated at two days post-transfer but resolved within two weeks. Although luciferase expression quickly decreased following renal pelvis injection, the use of the piggyBac transposon system improved long-term expression. Immunosuppression with cyclophosphamide stabilised luciferase expression, suggesting immune clearance of the transfected cells occurs in immunocompetent animals. Injection of a transposon expressing erythropoietin raised the haematocrit, indicating that the developed injection technique can elicit a biologic effect in vivo. Hydrodynamic renal pelvis injection enables transposon mediated-kidney specific gene transfer in adult mice.

  11. Wolbachia genome integrated in an insect chromosome: Evolution and fate of laterally transferred endosymbiont genes

    PubMed Central

    Nikoh, Naruo; Tanaka, Kohjiro; Shibata, Fukashi; Kondo, Natsuko; Hizume, Masahiro; Shimada, Masakazu; Fukatsu, Takema

    2008-01-01

    Recent accumulation of microbial genome data has demonstrated that lateral gene transfers constitute an important and universal evolutionary process in prokaryotes, while those in multicellular eukaryotes are still regarded as unusual, except for endosymbiotic gene transfers from mitochondria and plastids. Here we thoroughly investigated the bacterial genes derived from a Wolbachia endosymbiont on the nuclear genome of the beetle Callosobruchus chinensis. Exhaustive PCR detection and Southern blot analysis suggested that ∼30% of Wolbachia genes, in terms of the gene repertoire of wMel, are present on the insect nuclear genome. Fluorescent in situ hybridization located the transferred genes on the proximal region of the basal short arm of the X chromosome. Molecular evolutionary and other lines of evidence indicated that the transferred genes are probably derived from a single lateral transfer event. The transferred genes were, for the length examined, structurally disrupted, freed from functional constraints, and transcriptionally inactive. Hence, most, if not all, of the transferred genes have been pseudogenized. Notwithstanding this, the transferred genes were ubiquitously detected from Japanese and Taiwanese populations of C. chinensis, while the number of the transferred genes detected differed between the populations. The transferred genes were not detected from congenic beetle species, indicating that the transfer event occurred after speciation of C. chinensis, which was estimated to be one or several million years ago. These features of the laterally transferred endosymbiont genes are compared with the evolutionary patterns of mitochondrial and plastid genome fragments acquired by nuclear genomes through recent endosymbiotic gene transfers. PMID:18073380

  12. How Toddlers Acquire and Transfer Tool Knowledge: Developmental Changes and the Role of Executive Functions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pauen, Sabina; Bechtel-Kuehne, Sabrina

    2016-01-01

    This report investigates tool learning and its relations to executive functions (EFs) in toddlers. In Study 1 (N = 93), 18-, 20-, 22-, and 24-month-old children learned equally well to choose a correct tool from observation, whereas performance based on feedback improved with age. Knowledge transfer showed significant progress after 22 months of…

  13. Tools, courses, and learning pathways offered by the National Interagency Fuels, Fire, and Vegetation Technology Transfer

    Treesearch

    Eva K. Strand; Kathy H. Schon; Jeff Jones

    2010-01-01

    Technological advances in the area of fuel and wildland fire management have created a need for effective decision support tools and technology training. The National Interagency Fuels Committee and LANDFIRE have chartered a team to develop science-based learning tools for assessment of fire and fuels and to provide online training and technology transfer to help...

  14. How Toddlers Acquire and Transfer Tool Knowledge: Developmental Changes and the Role of Executive Functions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pauen, Sabina; Bechtel-Kuehne, Sabrina

    2016-01-01

    This report investigates tool learning and its relations to executive functions (EFs) in toddlers. In Study 1 (N = 93), 18-, 20-, 22-, and 24-month-old children learned equally well to choose a correct tool from observation, whereas performance based on feedback improved with age. Knowledge transfer showed significant progress after 22 months of…

  15. An Examination of Technology Transfer as a Tool for Management.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1986-03-01

    Delacarte Press, 1967. 22. Schon, Donald A., "Champions for Radical New Invention," Harvard Business Review , Vol. 41, No. 2, pp. 77-86 March-April 1963. 23...Wells, J. G. and Waterman, R. H. Jr., "Space Technology: Pay-Off from Spin-Off," Harvard Business Review pp. 106-118, July-August 1964, 24. Barth, R...Foster, R. N. "Organize for Technology Transfer" Harvard Business Review , pp. 31-37, Nov.-Dec. 1971. 29. Wooster Ohio Agricultural Experiment

  16. Horizontal transfer of carbohydrate metabolism genes into ectomycorrhizal Amanita.

    PubMed

    Chaib De Mares, Maryam; Hess, Jaqueline; Floudas, Dimitrios; Lipzen, Anna; Choi, Cindy; Kennedy, Megan; Grigoriev, Igor V; Pringle, Anne

    2015-03-01

    The genus Amanita encompasses both symbiotic, ectomycorrhizal fungi and asymbiotic litter decomposers; all species are derived from asymbiotic ancestors. Symbiotic species are no longer able to degrade plant cell walls. The carbohydrate esterases family 1 (CE1s) is a diverse group of enzymes involved in carbon metabolism, including decomposition and carbon storage. CE1 genes of the ectomycorrhizal A. muscaria appear diverged from all other fungal homologues, and more similar to CE1s of bacteria, suggesting a horizontal gene transfer (HGT) event. In order to test whether AmanitaCE1s were acquired horizontally, we built a phylogeny of CE1s collected from across the tree of life, and describe the evolution of CE1 genes among Amanita and relevant lineages of bacteria. CE1s of symbiotic Amanita were very different from CE1s of asymbiotic Amanita, and are more similar to bacterial CE1s. The protein structure of one CE1 gene of A. muscaria matched a depolymerase that degrades the carbon storage molecule poly((R)-3-hydroxybutyrate) (PHB). Asymbiotic Amanita do not carry sequence or structural homologues of these genes. The CE1s acquired through HGT may enable novel metabolisms, or play roles in signaling or defense. This is the first evidence for the horizontal transfer of carbohydrate metabolism genes into ectomycorrhizal fungi.

  17. Immunotherapy of Malignancy by in vivo Gene Transfer into Tumors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Plautz, Gregory E.; Yang, Zhi-Yong; Wu, Bei-Yue; Gao, Xiang; Huang, Leaf; Nabel, Gary J.

    1993-05-01

    The immune system confers protection against a variety of pathogens and contributes to the surveillance and destruction of neoplastic cells. Several cell types participate in the recognition and lysis of tumors, and appropriate immune stimulation provides therapeutic effects in malignancy. Foreign major histocompatibility complex (MHC) proteins also serve as a potent stimulus to the immune system. In this report, a foreign MHC gene was introduced directly into malignant tumors in vivo in an effort to stimulate tumor rejection. In contrast to previous attempts to induce tumor immunity by cell-mediated gene transfer, the recombinant gene was introduced directly into tumors in vivo. Expression of the murine class I H-2K^s gene within the CT26 mouse colon adenocarcinoma (H-2K^d) or the MCA 106 fibrosarcoma (H-2K^b) induced a cytotoxic T-cell response to H-2K^s and, more importantly, to other antigens present on unmodified tumor cells. This immune response attenuated tumor growth and caused complete tumor regression in many cases. Direct gene transfer in vivo can therefore induce cell-mediated immunity against specific gene products, which provides an immunotherapeutic effect for malignancy, and potentially can be applied to the treatment of cancer and infectious diseases in man.

  18. Human gene transfer: Characterization of human tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes as vehicles for retroviral-mediated gene transfer in man

    SciTech Connect

    Kasid, A.; Morecki, S.; Aebersold, P.; Cornetta, K.; Culver, K.; Freeman, S.; Director, E.; Lotze, M.T.; Blaese, R.M.; Anderson, W.F.; Rosenberg, S.A. )

    1990-01-01

    Tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) are cells generated from tumor suspensions cultured in interleukin 2 that can mediate cancer regression when adoptively transferred into mice or humans. Since TILs proliferate rapidly in vitro, recirculate, and preferentially localize at the tumor site in vivo, they provide an attractive model for delivery of exogenous genetic material into man. To determine whether efficient gene transfer into TILs is feasible. The authors transduced human TILs with the bacterial gene for neomycin-resistance (Neo{sup R}) using the retroviral vector N2. The transduced TIL populations were stable and polyclonal with respect to the intact Neo{sup R} gene integration and expressed high levels of neomycin phosphotransferase activity. The Neo{sup R} gene insertion did not alter the in vitro growth pattern and interleukin 2 dependence of the transduced TILs. Analyses of T-cell receptor gene rearrangement for {beta}- and {gamma}-chain genes revealed the oligoclonal nature of the TIL populations with no major change in the DNA rearrangement patterns or the levels of mRNA expression of the {beta} and {gamma} chains following transduction and selection of TILs in the neomycin analog G418. Human TILs expressed mRNA for tumor necrosis factors ({alpha} and {beta}) and interleukin 2 receptor P55. This pattern of cytokine-mRNA expression was not significantly altered following the transduction of TILs. The studies demonstrate the feasibility of TILs as suitable cellular vehicles for the introduction of therapeutic genes into patients receiving autologous TILs.

  19. Horizontal gene transfer in nematodes: a catalyst for plant parasitism?

    PubMed

    Haegeman, Annelies; Jones, John T; Danchin, Etienne G J

    2011-08-01

    The origin of plant parasitism within the phylum Nematoda is intriguing. The ability to parasitize plants has originated independently at least three times during nematode evolution and, as more molecular data has emerged, it has become clear that multiple instances of horizontal gene transfer (HGT) from bacteria and fungi have played a crucial role in the nematode's adaptation to this new lifestyle. The first reported HGT cases in plant-parasitic nematodes were genes encoding plant cell wall-degrading enzymes. Other putative examples of HGT were subsequently described, including genes that may be involved in the modulation of the plant's defense system, the establishment of a nematode feeding site, and the synthesis or processing of nutrients. Although, in many cases, it is difficult to pinpoint the donor organism, candidate donors are usually soil dwelling and are either plant-pathogenic or plant-associated microorganisms, hence occupying the same ecological niche as the nematodes. The exact mechanisms of transfer are unknown, although close contacts with donor microorganisms, such as symbiotic or trophic interactions, are a possibility. The widespread occurrence of horizontally transferred genes in evolutionarily independent plant-parasitic nematode lineages suggests that HGT may be a prerequisite for successful plant parasitism in nematodes.

  20. Tools and Principles for Microbial Gene Circuit Engineering.

    PubMed

    Bradley, Robert W; Buck, Martin; Wang, Baojun

    2016-02-27

    Synthetic biologists aim to construct novel genetic circuits with useful applications through rational design and forward engineering. Given the complexity of signal processing that occurs in natural biological systems, engineered microbes have the potential to perform a wide range of desirable tasks that require sophisticated computation and control. Realising this goal will require accurate predictive design of complex synthetic gene circuits and accompanying large sets of quality modular and orthogonal genetic parts. Here we present a current overview of the versatile components and tools available for engineering gene circuits in microbes, including recently developed RNA-based tools that possess large dynamic ranges and can be easily programmed. We introduce design principles that enable robust and scalable circuit performance such as insulating a gene circuit against unwanted interactions with its context, and we describe efficient strategies for rapidly identifying and correcting causes of failure and fine-tuning circuit characteristics.

  1. Pyviko: an automated Python tool to design gene knockouts in complex viruses with overlapping genes.

    PubMed

    Taylor, Louis J; Strebel, Klaus

    2017-01-07

    Gene knockouts are a common tool used to study gene function in various organisms. However, designing gene knockouts is complicated in viruses, which frequently contain sequences that code for multiple overlapping genes. Designing mutants that can be traced by the creation of new or elimination of existing restriction sites further compounds the difficulty in experimental design of knockouts of overlapping genes. While software is available to rapidly identify restriction sites in a given nucleotide sequence, no existing software addresses experimental design of mutations involving multiple overlapping amino acid sequences in generating gene knockouts. Pyviko performed well on a test set of over 240,000 gene pairs collected from viral genomes deposited in the National Center for Biotechnology Information Nucleotide database, identifying a point mutation which added a premature stop codon within the first 20 codons of the target gene in 93.2% of all tested gene-overprinted gene pairs. This shows that Pyviko can be used successfully in a wide variety of contexts to facilitate the molecular cloning and study of viral overprinted genes. Pyviko is an extensible and intuitive Python tool for designing knockouts of overlapping genes. Freely available as both a Python package and a web-based interface ( http://louiejtaylor.github.io/pyViKO/ ), Pyviko simplifies the experimental design of gene knockouts in complex viruses with overlapping genes.

  2. Can Viruses be Modified to Achieve Sustained Gene Transfer

    PubMed Central

    Li, Hua; Ertl, Hildegund C. J.

    2011-01-01

    It is very easy to replace a faulty gene in an immunocompromised mouse. First, one takes a well-characterized virus, such as an adenovirus or an adeno-associated virus, and incorporates the correct version of the faulty gene together with some regulatory sequences into the genome. Then, one transduces the recombinant genome into helper cells, which will add the viral capsid. At last, one injects the resulting viral vector into the sick mouse, and the mouse is cured. It is not that easy in an immunocompetent mouse, let alone in a human, as over the eons the immune system evolved to eliminate viruses regardless if they penetrate as dangerous pathogens or are injected by a well-meaning gene therapist. Here we offer our perspective on the potential of how viral vectors achieve sustained gene transfer in the face of a hostile immune system. PMID:21808636

  3. Plasmid and clonal interference during post horizontal gene transfer evolution.

    PubMed

    Bedhomme, S; Perez Pantoja, D; Bravo, I G

    2017-04-01

    Plasmids are nucleic acid molecules that can drive their own replication in a living cell. They can be transmitted horizontally and can thrive in the host cell to high-copy numbers. Plasmid replication and gene expression consume cellular resources and cells carrying plasmids incur fitness costs. But many plasmids carry genes that can be beneficial under certain conditions, allowing the cell to endure in the presence of antibiotics, toxins, competitors or parasites. Horizontal transfer of plasmid-encoded genes can thus instantaneously confer differential adaptation to local or transient selection conditions. This conflict between cellular fitness and plasmid spread sets the scene for multilevel selection processes. We have engineered a system to study the short-term evolutionary impact of different synonymous versions of a plasmid-encoded antibiotic resistance gene. Applying experimental evolution under different selection conditions and deep sequencing allowed us to show rapid local adaptation to the presence of antibiotic and to the specific version of the resistance gene transferred. We describe the presence of clonal interference at two different levels: at the within-cell level, because a single cell can carry several plasmids, and at the between-cell level, because a bacterial population may contain several clones carrying different plasmids and displaying different fitness in the presence/absence of antibiotic. Understanding the within-cell and between-cell dynamics of plasmids after horizontal gene transfer is essential to unravel the dense network of mobile elements underlying the worldwide threat to public health of antibiotic resistance. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  4. Characterization of an Ancient Lepidopteran Lateral Gene Transfer

    PubMed Central

    Wheeler, David; Redding, Amanda J.; Werren, John H.

    2013-01-01

    Bacteria to eukaryote lateral gene transfers (LGT) are an important potential source of material for the evolution of novel genetic traits. The explosion in the number of newly sequenced genomes provides opportunities to identify and characterize examples of these lateral gene transfer events, and to assess their role in the evolution of new genes. In this paper, we describe an ancient lepidopteran LGT of a glycosyl hydrolase family 31 gene (GH31) from an Enterococcus bacteria. PCR amplification between the LGT and a flanking insect gene confirmed that the GH31 was integrated into the Bombyx mori genome and was not a result of an assembly error. Database searches in combination with degenerate PCR on a panel of 7 lepidopteran families confirmed that the GH31 LGT event occurred deep within the Order approximately 65–145 million years ago. The most basal species in which the LGT was found is Plutella xylostella (superfamily: Yponomeutoidea). Array data from Bombyx mori shows that GH31 is expressed, and low dN/dS ratios indicates the LGT coding sequence is under strong stabilizing selection. These findings provide further support for the proposition that bacterial LGTs are relatively common in insects and likely to be an underappreciated source of adaptive genetic material. PMID:23533610

  5. Phage-mediated intergeneric transfer of toxin genes.

    PubMed

    Chen, John; Novick, Richard P

    2009-01-02

    Because bacteriophages generally parasitize only closely related bacteria, it is assumed that phage-mediated genetic exchange occurs primarily within species. Here we report that staphylococcal pathogenenicity islands, containing superantigen genes, and other mobile elements transferred to Listeria monocytogenes at the same high frequencies as they transfer within Staphylococcus aureus. Several staphylococcal phages transduced L. monocytogenes but could not form plaques. In an experiment modeling phage therapy for bovine mastitis, we observed pathogenicity island transfer between S. aureus and L. monocytogenes in raw milk. Thus, phages may participate in a far more expansive network of genetic information exchange among bacteria of different species than originally thought, with important implications for the evolution of human pathogens.

  6. The Data Transfer Kit: A geometric rendezvous-based tool for multiphysics data transfer

    SciTech Connect

    Slattery, S. R.; Wilson, P. P. H.; Pawlowski, R. P.

    2013-07-01

    The Data Transfer Kit (DTK) is a software library designed to provide parallel data transfer services for arbitrary physics components based on the concept of geometric rendezvous. The rendezvous algorithm provides a means to geometrically correlate two geometric domains that may be arbitrarily decomposed in a parallel simulation. By repartitioning both domains such that they have the same geometric domain on each parallel process, efficient and load balanced search operations and data transfer can be performed at a desirable algorithmic time complexity with low communication overhead relative to other types of mapping algorithms. With the increased development efforts in multiphysics simulation and other multiple mesh and geometry problems, generating parallel topology maps for transferring fields and other data between geometric domains is a common operation. The algorithms used to generate parallel topology maps based on the concept of geometric rendezvous as implemented in DTK are described with an example using a conjugate heat transfer calculation and thermal coupling with a neutronics code. In addition, we provide the results of initial scaling studies performed on the Jaguar Cray XK6 system at Oak Ridge National Laboratory for a worse-case-scenario problem in terms of algorithmic complexity that shows good scaling on 0(1 x 104) cores for topology map generation and excellent scaling on 0(1 x 105) cores for the data transfer operation with meshes of O(1 x 109) elements. (authors)

  7. Gene transfer from a parasitic flowering plant to a fern

    PubMed Central

    Davis, Charles C; Anderson, William R; Wurdack, Kenneth J

    2005-01-01

    The rattlesnake fern (Botrychium virginianum (L.) Sw.) is obligately mycotrophic and widely distributed across the northern hemisphere. Three mitochondrial gene regions place this species with other ferns in Ophioglossaceae, while two regions place it as a member of the largely parasitic angiosperm order Santalales (sandalwoods and mistletoes). These discordant phylogenetic placements suggest that part of the genome in B. virginianum was acquired by horizontal gene transfer (HGT), perhaps from root-parasitic Loranthaceae. These transgenes are restricted to B. virginianum and occur across the range of the species. Molecular and life-history traits indicate that the transfer preceded the global expansion of B. virginianum, and that the latter may have happened very rapidly. This is the first report of HGT from an angiosperm to a fern, through either direct parasitism or the mediation of interconnecting fungal symbionts. PMID:16191635

  8. Gene transfer from a parasitic flowering plant to a fern.

    PubMed

    Davis, Charles C; Anderson, William R; Wurdack, Kenneth J

    2005-11-07

    The rattlesnake fern (Botrychium virginianum (L.) Sw.) is obligately mycotrophic and widely distributed across the northern hemisphere. Three mitochondrial gene regions place this species with other ferns in Ophioglossaceae, while two regions place it as a member of the largely parasitic angiosperm order Santalales (sandalwoods and mistletoes). These discordant phylogenetic placements suggest that part of the genome in B. virginianum was acquired by horizontal gene transfer (HGT), perhaps from root-parasitic Loranthaceae. These transgenes are restricted to B. virginianum and occur across the range of the species. Molecular and life-history traits indicate that the transfer preceded the global expansion of B. virginianum, and that the latter may have happened very rapidly. This is the first report of HGT from an angiosperm to a fern, through either direct parasitism or the mediation of interconnecting fungal symbionts.

  9. The use of gene therapy tools in reproductive immunology research.

    PubMed

    Zenclussen, Ana Claudia; Zenclussen, Maria L; Ritter, Thomas; Volk, Hans D

    2005-10-01

    Mammalian pregnancy is a complex phenomenon allowing the maternal immune system to support its allogeneic fetus, while still being effective against pathogens. Gene therapy approaches have the potential to treat devastating inherited diseases for which there is a little hope of finding a conventional cure. In reproductive medicine, experimental trials have been made so far only for correcting gene defects in utero. The use of gene therapy for improving pregnancy-rate success or avoiding pregnancy-related diseases i.e. miscarriage or pre-eclampsia, remains a very distant goal with unresolved moral and ethical aspects. However, gene therapy may help determining the role of several genes in supporting fetal growth and/or avoiding its rejection experimentally and might further help to identify new targets of intervention. Gene therapy strategies to avoid fetal rejection may include the transfer and expression of cyto-protective molecules locally at the fetal-placental interface. In addition, the ex-vivo genetic modification of immune cells for tolerance induction is a novel and tempting approach. In this regard, we have confirmed the role of the cyto-protective and immunomodulatory molecule Heme Oxygenase-1 (HO-1), by treating animals undergoing abortion with an adenovirus coding for HO-1. Since the sole application of a control vector did not provoke deleterious effects in pregnancy outcome, we propose the use of experimental gene therapy for unveiling molecular and cellular pathways leading to pregnancy success.

  10. Three computational tools for predicting bacterial essential genes.

    PubMed

    Guo, Feng-Biao; Ye, Yuan-Nong; Ning, Lu-Wen; Wei, Wen

    2015-01-01

    Essential genes are those genes indispensable for the survival of any living cell. Bacterial essential genes constitute the cornerstones of synthetic biology and are often attractive targets in the development of antibiotics and vaccines. Because identification of essential genes with wet-lab ways often means expensive economic costs and tremendous labor, scientists changed to seek for alternative way of computational prediction. Aiming to help to solve this issue, our research group (CEFG: group of Computational, Comparative, Evolutionary and Functional Genomics, http://cefg.uestc.edu.cn) has constructed three online services to predict essential genes in bacterial genomes. These freely available tools are applicable for single gene sequences without annotated functions, single genes with definite names, and complete genomes of bacterial strains. To ensure reliable predictions, the investigated species should belong to the same family (for EGP) or phylum (for CEG_Match and Geptop) with one of the reference species, respectively. As the pilot software for the issue, predicting accuracies of them have been assessed and compared with existing algorithms, and note that all of other published algorithms have not any formed online services. We hope these services at CEFG will help scientists and researchers in the field of essential genes.

  11. Differences in lateral gene transfer in hypersaline versus thermal environments.

    PubMed

    Rhodes, Matthew E; Spear, John R; Oren, Aharon; House, Christopher H

    2011-07-08

    The role of lateral gene transfer (LGT) in the evolution of microorganisms is only beginning to be understood. While most LGT events occur between closely related individuals, inter-phylum and inter-domain LGT events are not uncommon. These distant transfer events offer potentially greater fitness advantages and it is for this reason that these "long distance" LGT events may have significantly impacted the evolution of microbes. One mechanism driving distant LGT events is microbial transformation. Theoretically, transformative events can occur between any two species provided that the DNA of one enters the habitat of the other. Two categories of microorganisms that are well-known for LGT are the thermophiles and halophiles. We identified potential inter-class LGT events into both a thermophilic class of Archaea (Thermoprotei) and a halophilic class of Archaea (Halobacteria). We then categorized these LGT genes as originating in thermophiles and halophiles respectively. While more than 68% of transfer events into Thermoprotei taxa originated in other thermophiles, less than 11% of transfer events into Halobacteria taxa originated in other halophiles. Our results suggest that there is a fundamental difference between LGT in thermophiles and halophiles. We theorize that the difference lies in the different natures of the environments. While DNA degrades rapidly in thermal environments due to temperature-driven denaturization, hypersaline environments are adept at preserving DNA. Furthermore, most hypersaline environments, as topographical minima, are natural collectors of cellular debris. Thus halophiles would in theory be exposed to a greater diversity and quantity of extracellular DNA than thermophiles.

  12. Risks from GMOs due to horizontal gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Keese, Paul

    2008-01-01

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is the stable transfer of genetic material from one organism to another without reproduction or human intervention. Transfer occurs by the passage of donor genetic material across cellular boundaries, followed by heritable incorporation to the genome of the recipient organism. In addition to conjugation, transformation and transduction, other diverse mechanisms of DNA and RNA uptake occur in nature. The genome of almost every organism reveals the footprint of many ancient HGT events. Most commonly, HGT involves the transmission of genes on viruses or mobile genetic elements. HGT first became an issue of public concern in the 1970s through the natural spread of antibiotic resistance genes amongst pathogenic bacteria, and more recently with commercial production of genetically modified (GM) crops. However, the frequency of HGT from plants to other eukaryotes or prokaryotes is extremely low. The frequency of HGT to viruses is potentially greater, but is restricted by stringent selection pressures. In most cases the occurrence of HGT from GM crops to other organisms is expected to be lower than background rates. Therefore, HGT from GM plants poses negligible risks to human health or the environment.

  13. Gene Transfer in Eukaryotic Cells Using Activated Dendrimers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dennig, Jörg

    Gene transfer into eukaryotic cells plays an important role in cell biology. Over the last 30 years a number of transfection methods have been developed to mediate gene transfer into eukaryotic cells. Classical methods include co-precipitation of DNA with calcium phosphate, charge-dependent precipitation of DNA with DEAE-dextran, electroporation of nucleic acids, and formation of transfection complexes between DNA and cationic liposomes. Gene transfer technologies based on activated PAMAM-dendrimers provide another class of transfection reagents. PAMAM-dendrimers are highly branched, spherical molecules. Activation of newly synthesized dendrimers involves hydrolytic removal of some of the branches, and results in a molecule with a higher degree of flexibility. Activated dendrimers assemble DNA into compact structures via charge interactions. Activated dendrimer - DNA complexes bind to the cell membrane of eukaryotic cells, and are transported into the cell by non-specific endocytosis. A structural model of the activated dendrimer - DNA complex and a potential mechanism for its uptake into cells will be discussed.

  14. Synthetic riboswitches for external regulation of genes transferred by replication-deficient and oncolytic adenoviruses

    PubMed Central

    Ketzer, Patrick; Haas, Simon F.; Engelhardt, Sarah; Hartig, Jörg S.; Nettelbeck, Dirk M.

    2012-01-01

    Therapeutic gene transfer by replication-defective viral vectors or, for cancer treatment, by replication-competent oncolytic viruses shows high promise for treatment of major diseases. To ensure safety, timing or dosing in patients, external control of therapeutic gene expression is desirable or even required. In this study, we explored the potential of artificial aptazymes, ligand-dependent self-cleaving ribozymes, as an innovative tool for regulation of therapeutic gene expression. Importantly, aptazymes act on RNA intrinsically, independent of regulatory protein–nucleic acid interactions and stoichiometry, are non-immunogenic and of small size. These are key advantages compared with the widely used inducible promoters, which were also reported to lose regulation at high copy numbers, e.g. after replication of oncolytic viruses. We characterized aptazymes in therapeutic gene transfer utilizing adenovectors (AdVs), adeno-associated vectors (AAVs) and oncolytic adenoviruses (OAds), which are all in advanced clinical testing. Our results show similar aptazyme-mediated regulation of gene expression by plasmids, AdVs, AAVs and OAds. Insertion into the 5′-, 3′- or both untranslated regions of several transgenes resulted in ligand-responsive gene expression. Notably, aptazyme regulation was retained during OAd replication and spread. In conclusion, our study demonstrates the fidelity of aptazymes in viral vectors and oncolytic viruses and highlights the potency of riboswitches for medical applications. PMID:22885302

  15. Identifying Mendelian disease genes with the Variant Effect Scoring Tool

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Whole exome sequencing studies identify hundreds to thousands of rare protein coding variants of ambiguous significance for human health. Computational tools are needed to accelerate the identification of specific variants and genes that contribute to human disease. Results We have developed the Variant Effect Scoring Tool (VEST), a supervised machine learning-based classifier, to prioritize rare missense variants with likely involvement in human disease. The VEST classifier training set comprised ~ 45,000 disease mutations from the latest Human Gene Mutation Database release and another ~45,000 high frequency (allele frequency >1%) putatively neutral missense variants from the Exome Sequencing Project. VEST outperforms some of the most popular methods for prioritizing missense variants in carefully designed holdout benchmarking experiments (VEST ROC AUC = 0.91, PolyPhen2 ROC AUC = 0.86, SIFT4.0 ROC AUC = 0.84). VEST estimates variant score p-values against a null distribution of VEST scores for neutral variants not included in the VEST training set. These p-values can be aggregated at the gene level across multiple disease exomes to rank genes for probable disease involvement. We tested the ability of an aggregate VEST gene score to identify candidate Mendelian disease genes, based on whole-exome sequencing of a small number of disease cases. We used whole-exome data for two Mendelian disorders for which the causal gene is known. Considering only genes that contained variants in all cases, the VEST gene score ranked dihydroorotate dehydrogenase (DHODH) number 2 of 2253 genes in four cases of Miller syndrome, and myosin-3 (MYH3) number 2 of 2313 genes in three cases of Freeman Sheldon syndrome. Conclusions Our results demonstrate the potential power gain of aggregating bioinformatics variant scores into gene-level scores and the general utility of bioinformatics in assisting the search for disease genes in large-scale exome sequencing studies. VEST is

  16. Phylogeographic support for horizontal gene transfer involving sympatric bruchid species

    PubMed Central

    Alvarez, Nadir; Benrey, Betty; Hossaert-McKey, Martine; Grill, Andrea; McKey, Doyle; Galtier, Nicolas

    2006-01-01

    Background We report on the probable horizontal transfer of a mitochondrial gene, cytb, between species of Neotropical bruchid beetles, in a zone where these species are sympatric. The bruchid beetles Acanthoscelides obtectus, A. obvelatus, A. argillaceus and Zabrotes subfasciatus develop on various bean species in Mexico. Whereas A. obtectus and A. obvelatus develop on Phaseolus vulgaris in the Mexican Altiplano, A. argillaceus feeds on P. lunatus in the Pacific coast. The generalist Z. subfasciatus feeds on both bean species, and is sympatric with A. obtectus and A. obvelatus in the Mexican Altiplano, and with A. argillaceus in the Pacific coast. In order to assess the phylogenetic position of these four species, we amplified and sequenced one nuclear (28S rRNA) and two mitochondrial (cytb, COI) genes. Results Whereas species were well segregated in topologies obtained for COI and 28S rRNA, an unexpected pattern was obtained in the cytb phylogenetic tree. In this tree, individuals from A. obtectus and A. obvelatus, as well as Z. subfasciatus individuals from the Mexican Altiplano, clustered together in a unique little variable monophyletic unit. In contrast, A. argillaceus and Z. subfasciatus individuals from the Pacific coast clustered in two separated clades, identically to the pattern obtained for COI and 28S rRNA. An additional analysis showed that Z. subfasciatus individuals from the Mexican Altiplano also possessed the cytb gene present in individuals of this species from the Pacific coast. Zabrotes subfasciatus individuals from the Mexican Altiplano thus demonstrated two cytb genes, an "original" one and an "infectious" one, showing 25% of nucleotide divergence. The "infectious" cytb gene seems to be under purifying selection and to be expressed in mitochondria. Conclusion The high degree of incongruence of the cytb tree with patterns for other genes is discussed in the light of three hypotheses: experimental contamination, hybridization, and

  17. Dynamic monitoring of horizontal gene transfer in soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheng, H. Y.; Masiello, C. A.; Silberg, J. J.; Bennett, G. N.

    2015-12-01

    Soil microbial gene expression underlies microbial behaviors (phenotypes) central to many aspects of C, N, and H2O cycling. However, continuous monitoring of microbial gene expression in soils is challenging because genetically-encoded reporter proteins widely used in the lab are difficult to deploy in soil matrices: for example, green fluorescent protein cannot be easily visualized in soils, even in the lab. To address this problem we have developed a reporter protein that releases small volatile gases. Here, we applied this gas reporter in a proof-of-concept soil experiment, monitoring horizontal gene transfer, a microbial activity that alters microbial genotypes and phenotypes. Horizontal gene transfer is central to bacterial evolution and adaptation and is relevant to problems such as the spread of antibiotic resistance, increasing metal tolerance in superfund sites, and bioremediation capability of bacterial consortia. This process is likely to be impacted by a number of matrix properties not well-represented in the petri dish, such as microscale variations in water, nutrients, and O2, making petri-dish experiments a poor proxy for environmental processes. We built a conjugation system using synthetic biology to demonstrate the use of gas-reporting biosensors in safe, lab-based biogeochemistry experiments, and here we report the use of these sensors to monitor horizontal gene transfer in soils. Our system is based on the F-plasmid conjugation in Escherichia coli. We have found that the gas signal reports on the number of cells that acquire F-plasmids (transconjugants) in a loamy Alfisol collected from Kellogg Biological Station. We will report how a gas signal generated by transconjugants varies with the number of F-plasmid donor and acceptor cells seeded in a soil, soil moisture, and soil O2 levels.

  18. Gene transfer by viral vectors into blood vessels in a rat model of retinopathy of prematurity.

    PubMed

    Chowers, I; Banin, E; Hemo, Y; Porat, R; Falk, H; Keshet, E; Pe'er, J; Panet, A

    2001-08-01

    To test the feasibility of gene transfer into hyaloid blood vessels and into preretinal neovascularisation in a rat model of retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), using different viral vectors. Newborn rats were exposed to alternating hypoxic and hyperoxic conditions in order to induce ocular neovascularisation (ROP rats). Adenovirus, herpes simplex, vaccinia, and retroviral (MuLV based) vectors, all carrying the beta galactosidase (beta-gal) gene, were injected intravitreally on postnatal day 18 (P18). Two sets of controls were also examined: P18 ROP rats injected with saline and P18 rats that were raised in room air before the viral vectors or saline were injected. Two days after injection, the rats were killed, eyes enucleated, and beta-gal expression was examined by X-gal staining in whole mounts and in histological sections. Intravitreal injection of the adenovirus and vaccinia vectors yielded marked beta-gal expression in hyaloid blood vessels in the rat ROP model. Retinal expression of beta-gal with these vectors was limited almost exclusively to the vicinity of the injection site. Injection of herpes simplex yielded a punctuate pattern of beta-gal expression in the retina but not in blood vessels. No significant beta-gal expression occurred in rat eyes injected with the retroviral vector. Adenovirus is an efficient vector for gene transfer into blood vessels in an animal model of ROP. This may be a first step towards utilising gene transfer as a tool for modulating ocular neovascularisation for experimental and therapeutic purposes.

  19. Horizontal Gene Transfer is a Significant Driver of Gene Innovation in Dinoflagellates

    PubMed Central

    Wisecaver, Jennifer H.; Brosnahan, Michael L.; Hackett, Jeremiah D.

    2013-01-01

    The dinoflagellates are an evolutionarily and ecologically important group of microbial eukaryotes. Previous work suggests that horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is an important source of gene innovation in these organisms. However, dinoflagellate genomes are notoriously large and complex, making genomic investigation of this phenomenon impractical with currently available sequencing technology. Fortunately, de novo transcriptome sequencing and assembly provides an alternative approach for investigating HGT. We sequenced the transcriptome of the dinoflagellate Alexandrium tamarense Group IV to investigate how HGT has contributed to gene innovation in this group. Our comprehensive A. tamarense Group IV gene set was compared with those of 16 other eukaryotic genomes. Ancestral gene content reconstruction of ortholog groups shows that A. tamarense Group IV has the largest number of gene families gained (314–1,563 depending on inference method) relative to all other organisms in the analysis (0–782). Phylogenomic analysis indicates that genes horizontally acquired from bacteria are a significant proportion of this gene influx, as are genes transferred from other eukaryotes either through HGT or endosymbiosis. The dinoflagellates also display curious cases of gene loss associated with mitochondrial metabolism including the entire Complex I of oxidative phosphorylation. Some of these missing genes have been functionally replaced by bacterial and eukaryotic xenologs. The transcriptome of A. tamarense Group IV lends strong support to a growing body of evidence that dinoflagellate genomes are extraordinarily impacted by HGT. PMID:24259313

  20. Facilitating knowledge transfer: decision support tools in environment and health.

    PubMed

    Liu, Hai-Ying; Bartonova, Alena; Neofytou, Panagiotis; Yang, Aileen; Kobernus, Michael J; Negrenti, Emanuele; Housiadas, Christos

    2012-06-28

    The HENVINET Health and Environment Network aimed to enhance the use of scientific knowledge in environmental health for policy making. One of the goals was to identify and evaluate Decision Support Tools (DST) in current use. Special attention was paid to four "priority" health issues: asthma and allergies, cancer, neurodevelopment disorders, and endocrine disruptors.We identified a variety of tools that are used for decision making at various levels and by various stakeholders. We developed a common framework for information acquisition about DSTs, translated this to a database structure and collected the information in an online Metadata Base (MDB).The primary product is an open access web-based MDB currently filled with 67 DSTs, accessible through the HENVINET networking portal http://www.henvinet.eu and http://henvinet.nilu.no. Quality assurance and control of the entries and evaluation of requirements to use the DSTs were also a focus of the work. The HENVINET DST MDB is an open product that enables the public to get basic information about the DSTs, and to search the DSTs using pre-designed attributes or free text. Registered users are able to 1) review and comment on existing DSTs; 2) evaluate each DST's functionalities, and 3) add new DSTs, or change the entry for their own DSTs. Assessment of the available 67 DSTs showed: 1) more than 25% of the DSTs address only one pollution source; 2) 25% of the DSTs address only one environmental stressor; 3) almost 50% of the DSTs are only applied to one disease; 4) 41% of the DSTs can only be applied to one decision making area; 5) 60% of the DSTs' results are used only by national authority and/or municipality/urban level administration; 6) almost half of the DSTs are used only by environmental professionals and researchers. This indicates that there is a need to develop DSTs covering an increasing number of pollution sources, environmental stressors and health end points, and considering links to other 'Driving

  1. Estimating the Frequency of Horizontal Gene Transfer Using Phylogenetic Models of Gene Gain and Loss.

    PubMed

    Zamani-Dahaj, Seyed Alireza; Okasha, Mohamed; Kosakowski, Jakub; Higgs, Paul G

    2016-07-01

    We analyze patterns of gene presence and absence in a maximum likelihood framework with rate parameters for gene gain and loss. Standard methods allow independent gains and losses in different parts of a tree. While losses of the same gene are likely to be frequent, multiple gains need to be considered carefully. A gene gain could occur by horizontal transfer or by origin of a gene within the lineage being studied. If a gene is gained more than once, then at least one of these gains must be a horizontal transfer. A key parameter is the ratio of gain to loss rates, a/v We consider the limiting case known as the infinitely many genes model, where a/v tends to zero and a gene cannot be gained more than once. The infinitely many genes model is used as a null model in comparison to models that allow multiple gains. Using genome data from cyanobacteria and archaea, it is found that the likelihood is significantly improved by allowing for multiple gains, but the average a/v is very small. The fraction of genes whose presence/absence pattern is best explained by multiple gains is only 15% in the cyanobacteria and 20% and 39% in two data sets of archaea. The distribution of rates of gene loss is very broad, which explains why many genes follow a treelike pattern of vertical inheritance, despite the presence of a significant minority of genes that undergo horizontal transfer. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  2. Horizontal Gene Transfer Contributes to the Evolution of Arthropod Herbivory.

    PubMed

    Wybouw, Nicky; Pauchet, Yannick; Heckel, David G; Van Leeuwen, Thomas

    2016-06-27

    Within animals, evolutionary transition toward herbivory is severely limited by the hostile characteristics of plants. Arthropods have nonetheless counteracted many nutritional and defensive barriers imposed by plants and are currently considered as the most successful animal herbivores in terrestrial ecosystems. We gather a body of evidence showing that genomes of various plant feeding insects and mites possess genes whose presence can only be explained by horizontal gene transfer (HGT). HGT is the asexual transmission of genetic information between reproductively isolated species. Although HGT is known to have great adaptive significance in prokaryotes, its impact on eukaryotic evolution remains obscure. Here, we show that laterally transferred genes into arthropods underpin many adaptations to phytophagy, including efficient assimilation and detoxification of plant produced metabolites. Horizontally acquired genes and the traits they encode often functionally diversify within arthropod recipients, enabling the colonization of more host plant species and organs. We demonstrate that HGT can drive metazoan evolution by uncovering its prominent role in the adaptations of arthropods to exploit plants. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  3. Horizontal Gene Transfer Contributes to the Evolution of Arthropod Herbivory

    PubMed Central

    Wybouw, Nicky; Pauchet, Yannick; Heckel, David G.; Van Leeuwen, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    Within animals, evolutionary transition toward herbivory is severely limited by the hostile characteristics of plants. Arthropods have nonetheless counteracted many nutritional and defensive barriers imposed by plants and are currently considered as the most successful animal herbivores in terrestrial ecosystems. We gather a body of evidence showing that genomes of various plant feeding insects and mites possess genes whose presence can only be explained by horizontal gene transfer (HGT). HGT is the asexual transmission of genetic information between reproductively isolated species. Although HGT is known to have great adaptive significance in prokaryotes, its impact on eukaryotic evolution remains obscure. Here, we show that laterally transferred genes into arthropods underpin many adaptations to phytophagy, including efficient assimilation and detoxification of plant produced metabolites. Horizontally acquired genes and the traits they encode often functionally diversify within arthropod recipients, enabling the colonization of more host plant species and organs. We demonstrate that HGT can drive metazoan evolution by uncovering its prominent role in the adaptations of arthropods to exploit plants. PMID:27307274

  4. Evidence of horizontal gene transfer between obligate leaf nodule symbionts

    PubMed Central

    Pinto-Carbó, Marta; Sieber, Simon; Dessein, Steven; Wicker, Thomas; Verstraete, Brecht; Gademann, Karl; Eberl, Leo; Carlier, Aurelien

    2016-01-01

    Bacteria of the genus Burkholderia establish an obligate symbiosis with plant species of the Rubiaceae and Primulaceae families. The bacteria, housed within the leaves, are transmitted hereditarily and have not yet been cultured. We have sequenced and compared the genomes of eight bacterial leaf nodule symbionts of the Rubiaceae plant family. All of the genomes exhibit features consistent with genome erosion. Genes potentially involved in the biosynthesis of kirkamide, an insecticidal C7N aminocyclitol, are conserved in most Rubiaceae symbionts. However, some have partially lost the kirkamide pathway due to genome erosion and are unable to synthesize the compound. Kirkamide synthesis is therefore not responsible for the obligate nature of the symbiosis. More importantly, we find evidence of intra-clade horizontal gene transfer (HGT) events affecting genes of the secondary metabolism. This indicates that substantial gene flow can occur at the early stages following host restriction in leaf nodule symbioses. We propose that host-switching events and plasmid conjugative transfers could have promoted these HGTs. This genomic analysis of leaf nodule symbionts gives, for the first time, new insights in the genome evolution of obligate symbionts in their early stages of the association with plants. PMID:26978165

  5. Investigating rate-limiting barriers to nanoscale nonviral gene transfer with nanobiophotonics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Hunter H.

    Nucleic acids are a novel class of therapeutics poised to address many unmet clinical needs. Safe and efficient delivery remains a significant challenge that has delayed the realization of the full therapeutic potential of nucleic acids. Nanoscale nonviral vectors offer an attractive alternative to viral vectors as natural and synthetic polymers or polypeptides may be rationally designed to meet the unique demands of individual applications. A mechanistic understanding of cellular barriers is necessary to develop guidelines for designing custom gene carriers which are expected to greatly impact this delivery challenge. The work herein focused on the relationships among nanocomplex stability, intracellular trafficking and unpacking kinetics, and DNA degradation. Ultrasensitive nanosensors based on QD-FRET were developed to characterize the biophysical properties of nanocomplexes and study these rate-limiting steps. Quantitative image analysis enabled the distributions of the subpopulation of condensed or released DNA to be determined within the major cellular compartments encountered during gene transfer. The steady state stability and unpacking kinetics within these compartments were found to impact transgene expression, elucidating multiple design strategies to achieve efficient gene transfer. To address enzymatic barriers, a novel two-step QD-FRET nanosensor was developed to analyze unpacking and DNA degradation simultaneously, which has not been accomplished previously. Bioresponsive strategies such as disulfide crosslinking and thermosensitivity were evaluated by QD-FRET and quantitative compartmental analysis as case studies to determine appropriate design specifications for thiolated polymers and thermoresponsive polypeptides. Relevant nanobiophotonic tools were developed as a platform to study major rate-limiting barriers to nanomedicine and demonstrated the feasibility of using mechanistic information gained from these tools to guide the rational design of

  6. Gene Therapy Inhibiting Neointimal Vascular Lesion: In vivo Transfer of Endothelial Cell Nitric Oxide Synthase Gene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    von der Leyen, Heiko E.; Gibbons, Gary H.; Morishita, Ryuichi; Lewis, Neil P.; Zhang, Lunan; Nakajima, Masatoshi; Kaneda, Yasufumi; Cooke, John P.; Dzau, Victor J.

    1995-02-01

    It is postulated that vascular disease involves a disturbance in the homeostatic balance of factors regulating vascular tone and structure. Recent developments in gene transfer techniques have emerged as an exciting therapeutic option to treat vascular disease. Several studies have established the feasibility of direct in vivo gene transfer into the vasculature by using reporter genes such as β-galactosidase or luciferase. To date no study has documented therapeutic effects with in vivo gene transfer of a cDNA encoding a functional enzyme. This study tests the hypothesis that endothelium-derived nitric oxide is an endogenous inhibitor of vascular lesion formation. After denudation by balloon injury of the endothelium of rat carotid arteries, we restored endothelial cell nitric oxide synthase (ec-NOS) expression in the vessel wall by using the highly efficient Sendai virus/liposome in vivo gene transfer technique. ec-NOS gene transfection not only restored NO production to levels seen in normal untreated vessels but also increased vascular reactivity of the injured vessel. Neointima formation at day 14 after balloon injury was inhibited by 70%. These findings provide direct evidence that NO is an endogenous inhibitor of vascular lesion formation in vivo (by inhibiting smooth muscle cell proliferation and migration) and suggest the possibility of ec-NOS transfection as a potential therapeutic approach to treat neointimal hyperplasia.

  7. HGTree: database of horizontally transferred genes determined by tree reconciliation.

    PubMed

    Jeong, Hyeonsoo; Sung, Samsun; Kwon, Taehyung; Seo, Minseok; Caetano-Anollés, Kelsey; Choi, Sang Ho; Cho, Seoae; Nasir, Arshan; Kim, Heebal

    2016-01-04

    The HGTree database provides putative genome-wide horizontal gene transfer (HGT) information for 2472 completely sequenced prokaryotic genomes. This task is accomplished by reconstructing approximate maximum likelihood phylogenetic trees for each orthologous gene and corresponding 16S rRNA reference species sets and then reconciling the two trees under parsimony framework. The tree reconciliation method is generally considered to be a reliable way to detect HGT events but its practical use has remained limited because the method is computationally intensive and conceptually challenging. In this regard, HGTree (http://hgtree.snu.ac.kr) represents a useful addition to the biological community and enables quick and easy retrieval of information for HGT-acquired genes to better understand microbial taxonomy and evolution. The database is freely available and can be easily scaled and updated to keep pace with the rapid rise in genomic information.

  8. HGTree: database of horizontally transferred genes determined by tree reconciliation

    PubMed Central

    Jeong, Hyeonsoo; Sung, Samsun; Kwon, Taehyung; Seo, Minseok; Caetano-Anollés, Kelsey; Choi, Sang Ho; Cho, Seoae; Nasir, Arshan; Kim, Heebal

    2016-01-01

    The HGTree database provides putative genome-wide horizontal gene transfer (HGT) information for 2472 completely sequenced prokaryotic genomes. This task is accomplished by reconstructing approximate maximum likelihood phylogenetic trees for each orthologous gene and corresponding 16S rRNA reference species sets and then reconciling the two trees under parsimony framework. The tree reconciliation method is generally considered to be a reliable way to detect HGT events but its practical use has remained limited because the method is computationally intensive and conceptually challenging. In this regard, HGTree (http://hgtree.snu.ac.kr) represents a useful addition to the biological community and enables quick and easy retrieval of information for HGT-acquired genes to better understand microbial taxonomy and evolution. The database is freely available and can be easily scaled and updated to keep pace with the rapid rise in genomic information. PMID:26578597

  9. Gene Ontology-Based Analysis of Zebrafish Omics Data Using the Web Tool Comparative Gene Ontology.

    PubMed

    Ebrahimie, Esmaeil; Fruzangohar, Mario; Moussavi Nik, Seyyed Hani; Newman, Morgan

    2017-10-01

    Gene Ontology (GO) analysis is a powerful tool in systems biology, which uses a defined nomenclature to annotate genes/proteins within three categories: "Molecular Function," "Biological Process," and "Cellular Component." GO analysis can assist in revealing functional mechanisms underlying observed patterns in transcriptomic, genomic, and proteomic data. The already extensive and increasing use of zebrafish for modeling genetic and other diseases highlights the need to develop a GO analytical tool for this organism. The web tool Comparative GO was originally developed for GO analysis of bacterial data in 2013 ( www.comparativego.com ). We have now upgraded and elaborated this web tool for analysis of zebrafish genetic data using GOs and annotations from the Gene Ontology Consortium.

  10. In vitro study for laser gene transfer in BHK-21 fibroblast cell line

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abdel Aziz, M.; Salem, D. S.; Salama, M. S.; Badr, Y.

    2009-02-01

    Modifications to our previously introduced system for laser microbeam cell surgery were carried out in the present work to match animal cells. These modifications included: 1- Using other laser system that used before, Excimer laser with 193 and 308 nm wavelengths. The used laser here, is He-Cd with low power and 441.5 nm wavelength in the visible region. 2- Instead of using pulsed laser, we used here CW He-Cd chopped by electrical chopper, which is synchronized with the mechanical motion of the mobile stage with step 40 microns, according to cell dimensions to avoid puncturing the same cell twice. The advantages of the modified here laser setup for gene transfer is: it is less damaging to the sensitive animal cell which has thin cell membrane. The present work aimed to: 1- Design a modified laser microbeam cell surgery, applicable to animal cells, such as fibroblast cells 2- To examine the efficiency of such system. 3- To assure gene transfer and its expression in the used cells. 4- To evaluate the ultra damages produced from using the laser beam as a modality for gene transfer. On the other wards, to introduce: safe, efficient and less damaging modality for gene transfer in animal cells. To achieve these goals, we applied the introduced here home-made laser setup with its synchronized parameters to introduce pBK-CMV phagemid, containing LacZ and neomycin resistance (neor )genes into BHK-21 fibroblast cell line. The results of the present work showed that: 1- Our modified laser microbeam cell surgery setup proved to be useful and efficient tool for gene transfer into fibroblast cells. 2- The presence and expression of LacZ gene was achieved using histochemical LacZ assay. 3- Selection of G418 antibiotic sensitivity assay confirmed the presence and expression towards stability of neor gene with time. 4- Presence of LacZ and neor genes in the genomic DNA of transfected fibroblast cells was indicated using PCR analysis. 5- Transmission electron microscopy indicated

  11. Lateral Gene Transfer Dynamics in the Ancient Bacterial Genus Streptomyces.

    PubMed

    McDonald, Bradon R; Currie, Cameron R

    2017-06-06

    Lateral gene transfer (LGT) profoundly shapes the evolution of bacterial lineages. LGT across disparate phylogenetic groups and genome content diversity between related organisms suggest a model of bacterial evolution that views LGT as rampant and promiscuous. It has even driven the argument that species concepts and tree-based phylogenetics cannot be applied to bacteria. Here, we show that acquisition and retention of genes through LGT are surprisingly rare in the ubiquitous and biomedically important bacterial genus Streptomyces Using a molecular clock, we estimate that the Streptomyces bacteria are ~380 million years old, indicating that this bacterial genus is as ancient as land vertebrates. Calibrating LGT rate to this geologic time span, we find that on average only 10 genes per million years were acquired and subsequently maintained. Over that same time span, Streptomyces accumulated thousands of point mutations. By explicitly incorporating evolutionary timescale into our analyses, we provide a dramatically different view on the dynamics of LGT and its impact on bacterial evolution.IMPORTANCE Tree-based phylogenetics and the use of species as units of diversity lie at the foundation of modern biology. In bacteria, these pillars of evolutionary theory have been called into question due to the observation of thousands of lateral gene transfer (LGT) events within and between lineages. Here, we show that acquisition and retention of genes through LGT are exceedingly rare in the bacterial genus Streptomyces, with merely one gene acquired in Streptomyces lineages every 100,000 years. These findings stand in contrast to the current assumption of rampant genetic exchange, which has become the dominant hypothesis used to explain bacterial diversity. Our results support a more nuanced understanding of genetic exchange, with LGT impacting evolution over short timescales but playing a significant role over long timescales. Deeper understanding of LGT provides new

  12. Horizontal transfer of expressed genes in a parasitic flowering plant

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Recent studies have shown that plant genomes have potentially undergone rampant horizontal gene transfer (HGT). In plant parasitic systems HGT appears to be facilitated by the intimate physical association between the parasite and its host. HGT in these systems has been invoked when a DNA sequence obtained from a parasite is placed phylogenetically very near to its host rather than with its closest relatives. Studies of HGT in parasitic plants have relied largely on the fortuitous discovery of gene phylogenies that indicate HGT, and no broad systematic search for HGT has been undertaken in parasitic systems where it is most expected to occur. Results We analyzed the transcriptomes of the holoparasite Rafflesia cantleyi Solms-Laubach and its obligate host Tetrastigma rafflesiae Miq. using phylogenomic approaches. Our analyses show that several dozen actively transcribed genes, most of which appear to be encoded in the nuclear genome, are likely of host origin. We also find that hundreds of vertically inherited genes (VGT) in this parasitic plant exhibit codon usage properties that are more similar to its host than to its closest relatives. Conclusions Our results establish for the first time a substantive number of HGTs in a plant host-parasite system. The elevated rate of unidirectional host-to- parasite gene transfer raises the possibility that HGTs may provide a fitness benefit to Rafflesia for maintaining these genes. Finally, a similar convergence in codon usage of VGTs has been shown in microbes with high HGT rates, which may help to explain the increase of HGTs in these parasitic plants. PMID:22681756

  13. Bacterial gene transfer by natural genetic transformation in the environment.

    PubMed Central

    Lorenz, M G; Wackernagel, W

    1994-01-01

    Natural genetic transformation is the active uptake of free DNA by bacterial cells and the heritable incorporation of its genetic information. Since the famous discovery of transformation in Streptococcus pneumoniae by Griffith in 1928 and the demonstration of DNA as the transforming principle by Avery and coworkers in 1944, cellular processes involved in transformation have been studied extensively by in vitro experimentation with a few transformable species. Only more recently has it been considered that transformation may be a powerful mechanism of horizontal gene transfer in natural bacterial populations. In this review the current understanding of the biology of transformation is summarized to provide the platform on which aspects of bacterial transformation in water, soil, and sediments and the habitat of pathogens are discussed. Direct and indirect evidence for gene transfer routes by transformation within species and between different species will be presented, along with data suggesting that plasmids as well as chromosomal DNA are subject to genetic exchange via transformation. Experiments exploring the prerequisites for transformation in the environment, including the production and persistence of free DNA and factors important for the uptake of DNA by cells, will be compiled, as well as possible natural barriers to transformation. The efficiency of gene transfer by transformation in bacterial habitats is possibly genetically adjusted to submaximal levels. The fact that natural transformation has been detected among bacteria from all trophic and taxonomic groups including archaebacteria suggests that transformability evolved early in phylogeny. Probable functions of DNA uptake other than gene acquisition will be discussed. The body of information presently available suggests that transformation has a great impact on bacterial population dynamics as well as on bacterial evolution and speciation. PMID:7968924

  14. DNA transfer by examination tools--a risk for forensic casework?

    PubMed

    Szkuta, Bianca; Harvey, Michelle L; Ballantyne, Kaye N; van Oorschot, Roland A H

    2015-05-01

    The introduction of profiling systems with increased sensitivity has led to a concurrent increase in the risk of detecting contaminating DNA in forensic casework. To evaluate the contamination risk of tools used during exhibit examination we have assessed the occurrence and level of DNA transferred between mock casework exhibits, comprised of cotton or glass substrates, and high-risk vectors (scissors, forceps, and gloves). The subsequent impact of such transfer in the profiling of a target sample was also investigated. Dried blood or touch DNA, deposited on the primary substrate, was transferred via the vector to the secondary substrate, which was either DNA-free or contained a target sample (dried blood or touch DNA). Pairwise combinations of both heavy and light contact were applied by each vector in order to simulate various levels of contamination. The transfer of dried blood to DNA-free cotton was observed for all vectors and transfer scenarios, with transfer substantially lower when glass was the substrate. Overall touch DNA transferred less efficiently, with significantly lower transfer rates than blood when transferred to DNA-free cotton; the greatest transfer of touch DNA occurred between cotton and glass substrates. In the presence of a target sample, the detectability of transferred DNA decreased due to the presence of background DNA. Transfer had no impact on the detectability of the target profile, however, in casework scenarios where the suspect profiles are not known, profile interpretation becomes complicated by the addition of contaminating alleles and the probative value of the evidence may be affected. The results of this study reiterate the need for examiners to adhere to stringent laboratory cleaning protocols, particularly in the interest of contamination minimisation, and to reduce the handling of items to prevent intra-item transfer. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Horizontal gene transfer from flowering plants to Gnetum

    PubMed Central

    Won, Hyosig; Renner, Susanne S.

    2003-01-01

    Although horizontal gene transfer is well documented in microbial genomes, no case has been reported in higher plants. We discovered horizontal transfer of the mitochondrial nad1 intron 2 and adjacent exons b and c from an asterid to Gnetum (Gnetales, gymnosperms). Gnetum has two copies of intron 2, a group II intron, that differ in their exons, nucleotide composition, domain lengths, and structural characteristics. One of the copies, limited to an Asian clade of Gnetum, is almost identical to the homologous locus in angiosperms, and partial sequences of its exons b and c show characteristic substitutions unique to angiosperms. Analyses of 70 seed plant nad1 exons b and c and intron 2 sequences, including representatives of all angiosperm clades, support that this copy originated from a euasterid and was horizontally transferred to Gnetum. Molecular clock dating, using calibrations provided by gnetalean macrofossils, suggests an age of 5 to 2 million years for the Asian clade that received the horizontal transfer. PMID:12963817

  16. Gene editing for skin diseases: designer nucleases as tools for gene therapy of skin fragility disorders.

    PubMed

    March, Oliver P; Reichelt, Julia; Koller, Ulrich

    2017-03-07

    The current treatment of inherited blistering skin diseases, such as epidermolysis bullosa (EB) is largely restricted to wound care and pain management. More effective therapeutic strategies are urgently required and targeting the genetic basis of these severe diseases is now within reach. Here we describe current gene editing tools and their potential to correct gene function in monogenetic blistering skin diseases. We present the features of the most frequently used gene editing techniques TALEN and CRISPR/Cas9, determining their preferential application under specific genetic conditions, including the type of mutational inheritance, the targeting site within the gene or the possibility to specifically target the mutation. Both tools have traits beneficial in specific situations. Promising developments in the field engender gene editing as a potentially powerful therapeutic option for future clinical applications. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  17. AAV-Mediated Gene Transfer to Dorsal Root Ganglion.

    PubMed

    Yu, Hongwei; Fischer, Gregory; Hogan, Quinn H

    2016-01-01

    Transferring genetic molecules into the peripheral sensory nervous system to manipulate nociceptive pathophysiology is a powerful approach for experimental modulation of sensory signaling and potentially for translation into therapy for chronic pain. This can be efficiently achieved by the use of recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV) in conjunction with nociceptor-specific regulatory transgene cassettes. Among different routes of delivery, direct injection into the dorsal root ganglia (DRGs) offers the most efficient AAV-mediated gene transfer selectively into the peripheral sensory nervous system. Here, we briefly discuss the advantages and applications of intraganglionic microinjection, and then provide a detailed approach for DRG injection, including a list of the necessary materials and description of a method for performing DRG microinjection experiments. We also discuss our experience with several adeno-associated virus (AAV) options for in vivo transgene expression in DRG neurons.

  18. Adenovirus dodecahedron, a new vector for human gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Fender, P; Ruigrok, R W; Gout, E; Buffet, S; Chroboczek, J

    1997-01-01

    Recombinant adenovirus is one of most efficient delivery vehicles for gene therapy. However, the initial enthusiasm for the use of recombinant adenovirus for gene therapy has been tempered by strong immune responses that develop to the virus and virus-infected cells. Even though recombinant adenoviruses are replication-defective, they introduce into the recipient cell, together with the gene of interest, viral genetes that might lead to fortuitous recombination if the recipient is infected by wild-type adenovirus. We propose the use of a dodecahedron made of adenovirus pentons or penton bases as an alternative vector for human gene therapy. The penton is a complex of two oligomeric proteins, a penton base and fiber, involved in the cell attachment, internalization, and liberation of virus into the cytoplasm. The dodecahedron retains many of the advantages of adenovirus for gene transfer such as efficiency of entry, efficient release of DNA from endosomes, and wide range of cell and tissue targets. Because it consists of only one or two adenovirus proteins instead of the 11 contained in an adenovirus virion and it does not contain the viral genome, it is potentially a safer alternative to recombinant adenovirus.

  19. Ancient horizontal gene transfer and the last common ancestors.

    PubMed

    Fournier, Gregory P; Andam, Cheryl P; Gogarten, Johann Peter

    2015-04-22

    The genomic history of prokaryotic organismal lineages is marked by extensive horizontal gene transfer (HGT) between groups of organisms at all taxonomic levels. These HGT events have played an essential role in the origin and distribution of biological innovations. Analyses of ancient gene families show that HGT existed in the distant past, even at the time of the organismal last universal common ancestor (LUCA). Most gene transfers originated in lineages that have since gone extinct. Therefore, one cannot assume that the last common ancestors of each gene were all present in the same cell representing the cellular ancestor of all extant life. Organisms existing as part of a diverse ecosystem at the time of LUCA likely shared genetic material between lineages. If these other lineages persisted for some time, HGT with the descendants of LUCA could have continued into the bacterial and archaeal lineages. Phylogenetic analyses of aminoacyl-tRNA synthetase protein families support the hypothesis that the molecular common ancestors of the most ancient gene families did not all coincide in space and time. This is most apparent in the evolutionary histories of seryl-tRNA synthetase and threonyl-tRNA synthetase protein families, each containing highly divergent "rare" forms, as well as the sparse phylogenetic distributions of pyrrolysyl-tRNA synthetase, and the bacterial heterodimeric form of glycyl-tRNA synthetase. These topologies and phyletic distributions are consistent with horizontal transfers from ancient, likely extinct branches of the tree of life. Of all the organisms that may have existed at the time of LUCA, by definition only one lineage is survived by known progeny; however, this lineage retains a genomic record of heterogeneous genetic origins. The evolutionary histories of aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases (aaRS) are especially informative in detecting this signal, as they perform primordial biological functions, have undergone several ancient HGT events, and

  20. Differences in lateral gene transfer in hypersaline versus thermal environments

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background The role of lateral gene transfer (LGT) in the evolution of microorganisms is only beginning to be understood. While most LGT events occur between closely related individuals, inter-phylum and inter-domain LGT events are not uncommon. These distant transfer events offer potentially greater fitness advantages and it is for this reason that these "long distance" LGT events may have significantly impacted the evolution of microbes. One mechanism driving distant LGT events is microbial transformation. Theoretically, transformative events can occur between any two species provided that the DNA of one enters the habitat of the other. Two categories of microorganisms that are well-known for LGT are the thermophiles and halophiles. Results We identified potential inter-class LGT events into both a thermophilic class of Archaea (Thermoprotei) and a halophilic class of Archaea (Halobacteria). We then categorized these LGT genes as originating in thermophiles and halophiles respectively. While more than 68% of transfer events into Thermoprotei taxa originated in other thermophiles, less than 11% of transfer events into Halobacteria taxa originated in other halophiles. Conclusions Our results suggest that there is a fundamental difference between LGT in thermophiles and halophiles. We theorize that the difference lies in the different natures of the environments. While DNA degrades rapidly in thermal environments due to temperature-driven denaturization, hypersaline environments are adept at preserving DNA. Furthermore, most hypersaline environments, as topographical minima, are natural collectors of cellular debris. Thus halophiles would in theory be exposed to a greater diversity and quantity of extracellular DNA than thermophiles. PMID:21740576

  1. Interaction between conjugative and retrotransposable elements in horizontal gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Novikova, Olga; Smith, Dorie; Hahn, Ingrid; Beauregard, Arthur; Belfort, Marlene

    2014-12-01

    Mobile genetic elements either encode their own mobilization machineries or hijack them from other mobile elements. Multiple classes of mobile elements often coexist within genomes and it is unclear whether they have the capacity to functionally interact and even collaborate. We investigate the possibility that molecular machineries of disparate mobile elements may functionally interact, using the example of a retrotransposon, in the form of a mobile group II intron, found on a conjugative plasmid pRS01 in Lactococcus lactis. This intron resides within the pRS01 ltrB gene encoding relaxase, the enzyme required for nicking the transfer origin (oriT) for conjugal transmission of the plasmid into a recipient cell. Here, we show that relaxase stimulates both the frequency and diversity of retrotransposition events using a retromobility indicator gene (RIG), and by developing a high-throughput genomic retrotransposition detection system called RIG-Seq. We demonstrate that LtrB relaxase not only nicks ssDNA of its cognate oriT in a sequence- and strand-specific manner, but also possesses weak off-target activity. Together, the data support a model in which the two different mobile elements, one using an RNA-based mechanism, the other using DNA-based transfer, do functionally interact. Intron splicing facilitates relaxase expression required for conjugation, whereas relaxase introduces spurious nicks in recipient DNA that stimulate both the frequency of intron mobility and the density of events. We hypothesize that this functional interaction between the mobile elements would promote horizontal conjugal gene transfer while stimulating intron dissemination in the donor and recipient cells.

  2. Horizontal transfer of β-carbonic anhydrase genes from prokaryotes to protozoans, insects, and nematodes.

    PubMed

    Zolfaghari Emameh, Reza; Barker, Harlan R; Tolvanen, Martti E E; Parkkila, Seppo; Hytönen, Vesa P

    2016-03-16

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is a movement of genetic information occurring outside of normal mating activities. It is especially common between prokaryotic endosymbionts and their protozoan, insect, and nematode hosts. Although beta carbonic anhydrase (β-CA) plays a crucial role in metabolic functions of many living organisms, the origin of β-CA genes in eukaryotic species remains unclear. This study was conducted using phylogenetics, prediction of subcellular localization, and identification of β-CA, transposase, integrase, and resolvase genes on the MGEs of bacteria. We also structurally analyzed β-CAs from protozoans, insects, and nematodes and their putative prokaryotic common ancestors, by homology modelling. Our investigations of a number of target genomes revealed that genes coding for transposase, integrase, resolvase, and conjugation complex proteins have been integrated with β-CA gene sequences on mobile genetic elements (MGEs) which have facilitated the mobility of β-CA genes from bacteria to protozoan, insect, and nematode species. The prokaryotic origin of protozoan, insect, and nematode β-CA enzymes is supported by phylogenetic analyses, prediction of subcellular localization, and homology modelling. MGEs form a complete set of enzymatic tools, which are relevant to HGT of β-CA gene sequences from prokaryotes to protozoans, insects, and nematodes.

  3. Horizontal gene transfer and recombination in Streptococcus dysgalactiae subsp. equisimilis

    PubMed Central

    McNeilly, Celia L.; McMillan, David J.

    2014-01-01

    Streptococcus dysgalactiae subsp. equisimilis (SDSE) is a human pathogen that colonizes the skin or throat, and causes a range of diseases from relatively benign pharyngitis to potentially fatal invasive diseases. While not as virulent as the close relative Streptococcus pyogenes the two share a number of virulence factors and are known to coexist in a human host. Both pre- and post-genomic studies have revealed that horizontal gene transfer (HGT) and recombination occurs between these two organisms and plays a major role in shaping the population structure of SDSE. This review summarizes our current knowledge of HGT and recombination in the evolution of SDSE. PMID:25566202

  4. Massive Mitochondrial Gene Transfer in a Parasitic Flowering Plant Clade

    PubMed Central

    Bradley, Robert K.; Sugumaran, M.; Marx, Christopher J.; Rest, Joshua S.; Davis, Charles C.

    2013-01-01

    Recent studies have suggested that plant genomes have undergone potentially rampant horizontal gene transfer (HGT), especially in the mitochondrial genome. Parasitic plants have provided the strongest evidence of HGT, which appears to be facilitated by the intimate physical association between the parasites and their hosts. A recent phylogenomic study demonstrated that in the holoparasite Rafflesia cantleyi (Rafflesiaceae), whose close relatives possess the world's largest flowers, about 2.1% of nuclear gene transcripts were likely acquired from its obligate host. Here, we used next-generation sequencing to obtain the 38 protein-coding and ribosomal RNA genes common to the mitochondrial genomes of angiosperms from R. cantleyi and five additional species, including two of its closest relatives and two host species. Strikingly, our phylogenetic analyses conservatively indicate that 24%–41% of these gene sequences show evidence of HGT in Rafflesiaceae, depending on the species. Most of these transgenic sequences possess intact reading frames and are actively transcribed, indicating that they are potentially functional. Additionally, some of these transgenes maintain synteny with their donor and recipient lineages, suggesting that native genes have likely been displaced via homologous recombination. Our study is the first to comprehensively assess the magnitude of HGT in plants involving a genome (i.e., mitochondria) and a species interaction (i.e., parasitism) where it has been hypothesized to be potentially rampant. Our results establish for the first time that, although the magnitude of HGT involving nuclear genes is appreciable in these parasitic plants, HGT involving mitochondrial genes is substantially higher. This may represent a more general pattern for other parasitic plant clades and perhaps more broadly for angiosperms. PMID:23459037

  5. Massive mitochondrial gene transfer in a parasitic flowering plant clade.

    PubMed

    Xi, Zhenxiang; Wang, Yuguo; Bradley, Robert K; Sugumaran, M; Marx, Christopher J; Rest, Joshua S; Davis, Charles C

    2013-01-01

    Recent studies have suggested that plant genomes have undergone potentially rampant horizontal gene transfer (HGT), especially in the mitochondrial genome. Parasitic plants have provided the strongest evidence of HGT, which appears to be facilitated by the intimate physical association between the parasites and their hosts. A recent phylogenomic study demonstrated that in the holoparasite Rafflesia cantleyi (Rafflesiaceae), whose close relatives possess the world's largest flowers, about 2.1% of nuclear gene transcripts were likely acquired from its obligate host. Here, we used next-generation sequencing to obtain the 38 protein-coding and ribosomal RNA genes common to the mitochondrial genomes of angiosperms from R. cantleyi and five additional species, including two of its closest relatives and two host species. Strikingly, our phylogenetic analyses conservatively indicate that 24%-41% of these gene sequences show evidence of HGT in Rafflesiaceae, depending on the species. Most of these transgenic sequences possess intact reading frames and are actively transcribed, indicating that they are potentially functional. Additionally, some of these transgenes maintain synteny with their donor and recipient lineages, suggesting that native genes have likely been displaced via homologous recombination. Our study is the first to comprehensively assess the magnitude of HGT in plants involving a genome (i.e., mitochondria) and a species interaction (i.e., parasitism) where it has been hypothesized to be potentially rampant. Our results establish for the first time that, although the magnitude of HGT involving nuclear genes is appreciable in these parasitic plants, HGT involving mitochondrial genes is substantially higher. This may represent a more general pattern for other parasitic plant clades and perhaps more broadly for angiosperms.

  6. GeRNet: a gene regulatory network tool.

    PubMed

    Dussaut, J S; Gallo, C A; Cravero, F; Martínez, M J; Carballido, J A; Ponzoni, I

    2017-08-30

    Gene regulatory networks (GRNs) are crucial in every process of life since they govern the majority of the molecular processes. Therefore, the task of assembling these networks is highly important. In particular, the so called model-free approaches have an advantage modeling the complexities of dynamic molecular networks, since most of the gene networks are hard to be mapped with accuracy by any other mathematical model. A highly abstract model-free approach, called rule-based approach, offers several advantages performing data-driven analysis; such as the requirement of the least amount of data. They also have an important ability to perform inferences: its simplicity allows the inference of large size models with a higher speed of analysis. However, regarding these techniques, the reconstruction of the relational structure of the network is partial, hence incomplete, for an effective biological analysis. This situation motivated us to explore the possibility of hybridizing with other approaches, such as biclustering techniques. This led to incorporate a biclustering tool that finds new relations between the nodes of the GRN. In this work we present a new software, called GeRNeT that integrates the algorithms of GRNCOP2 and BiHEA along a set of tools for interactive visualization, statistical analysis and ontological enrichment of the resulting GRNs. In this regard, results associated with Alzheimer disease datasets are presented that show the usefulness of integrating both bioinformatics tools. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. In vivo Cytokine Gene Transfer by Gene Gun Reduces Tumor Growth in Mice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Wenn H.; Burkholder, Joseph K.; Sun, Jian; Culp, Jerilyn; Turner, Joel; Lu, Xing G.; Pugh, Thomas D.; Ershler, William B.; Yang, Ning-Sun

    1995-03-01

    Implantation of tumor cells modified by in vitro cytokine gene transfer has been shown by many investigators to result in potent in vivo antitumor activities in mice. Here we describe an approach to tumor immunotherapy utilizing direct transfection of cytokine genes into tumorbearing animals by particle-mediated gene transfer. In vivo transfection of the human interleukin 6 gene into the tumor site reduced methylcholanthrene-induced fibrosarcoma growth, and a combination of murine tumor necrosis factor α and interferon γ genes inhibited growth of a renal carcinoma tumor model (Renca). In addition, treatment with murine interleukin 2 and interferon γ genes prolonged the survival of Renca tumor-bearing mice and resulted in tumor eradication in 25% of the test animals. Transgene expression was demonstrated in treated tissues by ELISA and immunohistochemical analysis. Significant serum levels of interleukin 6 and interferon γ were detected, demonstrating effective secretion of transgenic proteins from treated skin into the bloodstream. This in vivo cytokine gene therapy approach provides a system for evaluating the antitumor properties of various cytokines in different tumor models and has potential utility for human cancer gene therapy.

  8. Transfer of nonselectable genes into mouse teratocarcinoma cells and transcription of the transferred human. beta. -globin gene

    SciTech Connect

    Wagner, E.F.; Mintz, B.

    1982-02-01

    Teratocarcinoma (TCC) stem cells can function as vehicles for the introduction of specific recombinant genes into mice. Because most genes do not code for a selectable marker, the authors investigated the transformation efficiency of vectors with a linked selectable gene. In one series, TCC cells first selected for thymidine kinase deficiency were treated with DNA from the plasmid vector PtkH..beta..1 containing the human genomic ..beta..-globin gene and the thymidine kinase gene of herpes simplex virus. A high transformation frequency was obtained after selection in hypoxanthine-aminopterin-thymidine medium. Hybridization tests revealed that the majority of transformants had intact copies of the human gene among three to six total copies per cell. These were associated with cellular DNA sequences as judged from the presence of additional new restriction fragments and from stability of the sequences in tumors produced by injecting the cells subcutaneously. Total polyadenylate-containing RNA from cell cultures of two out of four transformants examined showed hybridization to the human gene probe: one RNA species resembled mature human ..beta..-globin mRNA transcripts; the others were of larger size. In differentiating tumors, various tissues, including hematopoietic cells of TCC provenance could be found. In a second model set of experiments, wild-type TCC cells were used to test a dominant-selection scheme with pSV-gpt vectors. Numerous transformants were isolated, and their transfected DNA was apparently stably integrated. Thus, any gene of choice can be transferred into TCC stem cells even without mutagenesis of the cells, and selected cell clones can be characterized. Cells of interest may then be introduced into early embryos to produce new mouse strains with predetermined genetic changes.

  9. Transcriptional gene silencing as a tool for uncovering gene function in maize.

    PubMed

    Cigan, A Mark; Unger-Wallace, Erica; Haug-Collet, Kristin

    2005-09-01

    Transcriptional gene silencing has broad applications for studying gene function in planta. In maize, a large number of genes have been identified as tassel-preferred in their expression pattern, both by traditional genetic methods and by recent high-throughput expression profiling platforms. Approaches using RNA suppression may provide a rapid alternative means to identify genes directly related to pollen development in maize. The male fertility gene Ms45 and several anther-expressed genes of unknown function were used to evaluate the efficacy of generating male-sterile plants by transcriptional gene silencing. A high frequency of male-sterile plants was obtained by constitutively expressing inverted repeats (IR) of the Ms45 promoter. These sterile plants lacked MS45 mRNA due to transcriptional inactivity of the target promoter. Moreover, fertility was restored to these promoter IR-containing plants by expressing the Ms45 coding region using heterologous promoters. Transcriptional silencing of other anther-expressed genes also significantly affected male fertility phenotypes and led to increased methylation of the target promoter DNA sequences. These studies provide evidence of disruption of gene activity in monocots by RNA interference constructs directed against either native or transformed promoter regions. This approach not only enables the correlation of monocot anther-expressed genes with functions that are important for reproduction in maize, but may also provide a tool for studying gene function and identifying regulatory components unique to transcriptional gene control.

  10. Synthetic RNAs for Gene Regulation: Design Principles and Computational Tools

    PubMed Central

    Laganà, Alessandro; Shasha, Dennis; Croce, Carlo Maria

    2014-01-01

    The use of synthetic non-coding RNAs for post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression has not only become a standard laboratory tool for gene functional studies but it has also opened up new perspectives in the design of new and potentially promising therapeutic strategies. Bioinformatics has provided researchers with a variety of tools for the design, the analysis, and the evaluation of RNAi agents such as small-interfering RNA (siRNA), short-hairpin RNA (shRNA), artificial microRNA (a-miR), and microRNA sponges. More recently, a new system for genome engineering based on the bacterial CRISPR-Cas9 system (Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats), was shown to have the potential to also regulate gene expression at both transcriptional and post-transcriptional level in a more specific way. In this mini review, we present RNAi and CRISPRi design principles and discuss the advantages and limitations of the current design approaches. PMID:25566532

  11. Gene Transfer and Molecular Cloning of the Human NGF Receptor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chao, Moses V.; Bothwell, Mark A.; Ross, Alonzo H.; Koprowski, Hilary; Lanahan, Anthony A.; Buck, C. Randall; Sehgal, Amita

    1986-04-01

    Nerve growth factor (NGF) and its receptor are important in the development of cells derived from the neural crest. Mouse L cell transformants have been generated that stably express the human NGF receptor gene transfer with total human DNA. Affinity cross-linking, metabolic labeling and immunoprecipitation, and equilibrium binding with 125I-labeled NGF revealed that this NGF receptor had the same size and binding characteristics as the receptor from human melanoma cells and rat PC12 cells. The sequences encoding the NGF receptor were molecularly cloned using the human Alu repetitive sequence as a probe. A cosmid clone that contained the human NGF receptor gene allowed efficient transfection and expression of the receptor.

  12. Passive immunization against HIV/AIDS by antibody gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Yang, Lili; Wang, Pin

    2014-01-27

    Despite tremendous efforts over the course of many years, the quest for an effective HIV vaccine by the classical method of active immunization remains largely elusive. However, two recent studies in mice and macaques have now demonstrated a new strategy designated as Vectored ImmunoProphylaxis (VIP), which involves passive immunization by viral vector-mediated delivery of genes encoding broadly neutralizing antibodies (bnAbs) for in vivo expression. Robust protection against virus infection was observed in preclinical settings when animals were given VIP to express monoclonal neutralizing antibodies. This unorthodox approach raises new promise for combating the ongoing global HIV pandemic. In this article, we survey the status of antibody gene transfer, review the revolutionary progress on isolation of extremely bnAbs, detail VIP experiments against HIV and its related virus conduced in humanized mice and macaque monkeys, and discuss the pros and cons of VIP and its opportunities and challenges towards clinical applications to control HIV/AIDS endemics.

  13. Design, development, and fabrication of extravehicular activity tools for support of the transfer orbit stage

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Albritton, L. M.; Redmon, J. W.; Tyler, T. R.

    1993-01-01

    Seven extravehicular activity (EVA) tools and a tool carrier have been designed and developed by MSFC in order to provide a two fault tolerant system for the transfer orbit stage (TOS) shuttle mission. The TOS is an upper stage booster for delivering payloads to orbits higher than the shuttle can achieve. Payloads are required not to endanger the shuttle even after two failures have occurred. The Airborne Support Equipment (ASE), used in restraining and deploying TOS, does not meet this criteria. The seven EVA tools designed will provide the required redundancy with no impact to the TOS hardware.

  14. Laterally Transferred Gene Recruited as a Venom in Parasitoid Wasps.

    PubMed

    Martinson, Ellen O; Martinson, Vincent G; Edwards, Rachel; Mrinalini; Werren, John H

    2016-04-01

    Parasitoid wasps use venom to manipulate the immunity and metabolism of their host insects in a variety of ways to provide resources for their offspring. Yet, how genes are recruited and evolve to perform venom functions remain open questions. A recently recognized source of eukaryotic genome innovation is lateral gene transfer (LGT). Glycoside hydrolase family 19 (GH19) chitinases are widespread in bacteria, microsporidia, and plants where they are used in nutrient acquisition or defense, but have previously not been known in metazoans. In this study, a GH19 chitinase LGT is described from the unicellular microsporidia/Rozella clade into parasitoid wasps of the superfamily Chalcidoidea, where it has become recruited as a venom protein. The GH19 chitinase is present in 15 species of chalcidoid wasps representing four families, and phylogenetic analysis indicates that it was laterally transferred near or before the origin of Chalcidoidea (∼95 Ma). The GH19 chitinase gene is highly expressed in the venom gland of at least seven species, indicating a role in the complex host manipulations performed by parasitoid wasp venom. RNAi knockdown in the model parasitoid Nasonia vitripennis reveals that-following envenomation-the GH19 chitinase induces fly hosts to upregulate genes involved in an immune response to fungi. A second, independent LGT of GH19 chitinase from microsporidia into mosquitoes was also found, also supported by phylogenetic reconstructions. Besides these two LGT events, GH19 chitinase is not found in any other sequenced animal genome, or in any fungi outside the microsporidia/Rozella clade. © The Author(s) 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  15. Interleukin-10 Gene Transfer in Rat Limbal Transplantation.

    PubMed

    Kaufmann, Claude; Mortimer, Lauren A; Brereton, Helen M; Irani, Yazad D; Parker, Douglas Ga; Anson, Donald S; Bachmann, Lucas M; Williams, Keryn A

    2017-09-19

    To evaluate the gene transfer of the interleukin (IL)-10 cytokine as a treatment modality for prolonging limbal allograft survival in a rat model. Adenoviral (AV) and lentiviral (LV) vectors were produced for ex vivo gene transfer into limbal graft tissue prior to orthotopic transplantation. Experimental groups comprised unmodified isografts, unmodified allografts, allografts transfected with a reporter gene, and allografts transfected with IL-10. The functional effects of the transgenes were determined by clinical assessment and by following donor cell survival in the recipient animal. Group comparisons were made using survival analysis and tested with the log-rank test. Differences in mean rejection times between groups were tested using the Wilcoxon rank-sum test. Isografts survived during the entire observation period of 56 days. Allografts underwent clinical rejection at a mean of 6.7 days (standard deviation 2.0) postoperatively, irrespective of the presence of transgenes (p < 0.001 for difference in rejection times). For both the AV and LV vector systems, Kaplan-Meier analysis showed a statistically significant difference with respect to time-to-graft failure when comparing allografts transfected with IL-10 with allografts transfected with reporter gene alone (p = 0.011 and p < 0.001, respectively). In the isografts, donor cells could be detected during the complete observation period. In all the allograft groups, however, donor cell detection declined after 1 week and was lost after 4 weeks. Under the conditions tested in the present model, both the AV and the LV vector systems were able to transfect limbal graft tissue ex vivo with biologically active IL-10, leading to delayed rejection compared to the controls.

  16. CXCR4 gene transfer prevents pressure overload induced heart failure

    PubMed Central

    LaRocca, Thomas J.; Jeong, Dongtak; Kohlbrenner, Erik; Lee, Ahyoung; Chen, JiQiu; Hajjar, Roger J.; Tarzami, Sima T.

    2012-01-01

    Stem cell and gene therapies are being pursued as strategies for repairing damaged cardiac tissue following myocardial infarction in an attempt to prevent heart failure. The chemokine receptor-4 (CXCR4) and its ligand, CXCL12, play a critical role in stem cell recruitment post-acute myocardial infarction. Whereas progenitor cell migration via the CXCL12/CXCR4 axis is well characterized, little is known about the molecular mechanisms of CXCR4 mediated modulation of cardiac hypertrophy and failure. We used gene therapy to test the effects of CXCR4 gene delivery on adverse ventricular remodeling due to pressure overload. We assessed the effect of cardiac overexpression of CXCR4 during trans-aortic constriction (TAC) using a cardiotropic adeno-associated viral vector (AAV9) carrying the CXCR4 gene. Cardiac overexpression of CXCR4 in mice with pressure overload prevented ventricular remodeling, preserved capillary density and maintained function as determined by echocardiography and in vivo hemodynamics. In isolated adult rat cardiac myocytes, CXCL12 treatment prevented isoproterenol induced hypertrophy and interrupted the calcineurin/NFAT pathway. Finally, a complex involving the L-type calcium channel, β2-adenoreceptor, and CXCR4 (Cav1.2/β2AR/CXCR4) was identified in healthy cardiac myocytes and was shown to dissociate as a consequence of heart failure. CXCR4 administered to the heart via gene transfer prevents pressure overload induced heart failure. The identification of CXCR4 participation in a Cav1.2-β2AR regulatory complex provides further insight into the mechanism by which CXCR4 modulates calcium homeostasis and chronic pressure overload responses in the cardiac myocyte. Together these results suggest AAV9.CXCR4 gene therapy is a potential therapeutic approach for congestive heart failure. PMID:22668785

  17. Genome-wide experimental determination of barriers to horizontal gene transfer

    SciTech Connect

    Rubin, Edward; Sorek, Rotem; Zhu, Yiwen; Creevey, Christopher J.; Francino, M. Pilar; Bork, Peer; Rubin, Edward M.

    2007-09-24

    Horizontal gene transfer, in which genetic material is transferred from the genome of one organism to another, has been investigated in microbial species mainly through computational sequence analyses. To address the lack of experimental data, we studied the attempted movement of 246,045 genes from 79 prokaryotic genomes into E. coli and identified genes that consistently fail to transfer. We studied the mechanisms underlying transfer inhibition by placing coding regions from different species under the control of inducible promoters. Their toxicity to the host inhibited transfer regardless of the species of origin and our data suggest that increased gene dosage and associated increased expression is a predominant cause for transfer failure. While these experimental studies examined transfer solely into E. coli, a computational analysis of gene transfer rates across available bacterial and archaeal genomes indicates that the barriers observed in our study are general across the tree of life.

  18. Horizontal gene transfer of microbial cellulases into nematode genomes is associated with functional assimilation and gene turnover

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Natural acquisition of novel genes from other organisms by horizontal or lateral gene transfer is well established for microorganisms. There is now growing evidence that horizontal gene transfer also plays important roles in the evolution of eukaryotes. Genome-sequencing and EST projects of plant and animal associated nematodes such as Brugia, Meloidogyne, Bursaphelenchus and Pristionchus indicate horizontal gene transfer as a key adaptation towards parasitism and pathogenicity. However, little is known about the functional activity and evolutionary longevity of genes acquired by horizontal gene transfer and the mechanisms favoring such processes. Results We examine the transfer of cellulase genes to the free-living and beetle-associated nematode Pristionchus pacificus, for which detailed phylogenetic knowledge is available, to address predictions by evolutionary theory for successful gene transfer. We used transcriptomics in seven Pristionchus species and three other related diplogastrid nematodes with a well-defined phylogenetic framework to study the evolution of ancestral cellulase genes acquired by horizontal gene transfer. We performed intra-species, inter-species and inter-genic analysis by comparing the transcriptomes of these ten species and tested for cellulase activity in each species. Species with cellulase genes in their transcriptome always exhibited cellulase activity indicating functional integration into the host's genome and biology. The phylogenetic profile of cellulase genes was congruent with the species phylogeny demonstrating gene longevity. Cellulase genes show notable turnover with elevated birth and death rates. Comparison by sequencing of three selected cellulase genes in 24 natural isolates of Pristionchus pacificus suggests these high evolutionary dynamics to be associated with copy number variations and positive selection. Conclusion We could demonstrate functional integration of acquired cellulase genes into the nematode

  19. Synthetic Fatty Acids Prevent Plasmid-Mediated Horizontal Gene Transfer

    PubMed Central

    Getino, María; Sanabria-Ríos, David J.; Fernández-López, Raúl; Campos-Gómez, Javier; Sánchez-López, José M.; Fernández, Antonio; Carballeira, Néstor M.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Bacterial conjugation constitutes a major horizontal gene transfer mechanism for the dissemination of antibiotic resistance genes among human pathogens. Antibiotic resistance spread could be halted or diminished by molecules that interfere with the conjugation process. In this work, synthetic 2-alkynoic fatty acids were identified as a novel class of conjugation inhibitors. Their chemical properties were investigated by using the prototype 2-hexadecynoic acid and its derivatives. Essential features of effective inhibitors were the carboxylic group, an optimal long aliphatic chain of 16 carbon atoms, and one unsaturation. Chemical modification of these groups led to inactive or less-active derivatives. Conjugation inhibitors were found to act on the donor cell, affecting a wide number of pathogenic bacterial hosts, including Escherichia, Salmonella, Pseudomonas, and Acinetobacter spp. Conjugation inhibitors were active in inhibiting transfer of IncF, IncW, and IncH plasmids, moderately active against IncI, IncL/M, and IncX plasmids, and inactive against IncP and IncN plasmids. Importantly, the use of 2-hexadecynoic acid avoided the spread of a derepressed IncF plasmid into a recipient population, demonstrating the feasibility of abolishing the dissemination of antimicrobial resistances by blocking bacterial conjugation. PMID:26330514

  20. Interspecific evolution: microbial symbiosis, endosymbiosis and gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Hoffmeister, Meike; Martin, William

    2003-08-01

    Microbial symbioses are interesting in their own right and also serve as exemplary models to help biologists to understand two important symbioses in the evolutionary past of eukaryotic cells: the origins of chloroplasts and mitochondria. Most, if not all, microbial symbioses have a chemical basis: compounds produced by one partner are useful for the other. But symbioses can also entail the transfer of genes from one partner to the other, which in some cases cements two cells into a bipartite, co-evolving unit. Here, we discuss some microbial symbioses in which progress is being made in uncovering the nature of symbiotic interactions: anaerobic methane-oxidizing consortia, marine worms that possess endosymbionts instead of a digestive tract, amino acid-producing endosymbionts of aphids, prokaryotic endosymbionts living within a prokaryotic host within mealybugs, endosymbionts of an insect vector of human disease and a photosynthetic sea slug that steals chloroplasts from algae. In the case of chloroplasts and mitochondria, examples of recent and ancient gene transfer to the chromosomes of their host cell illustrate the process of genetic merger in the wake of organelle origins.

  1. Lateral gene transfers have polished animal genomes: lessons from nematodes.

    PubMed

    Danchin, Etienne G J; Rosso, Marie-Noëlle

    2012-01-01

    It is now accepted that lateral gene transfers (LGT), have significantly contributed to the composition of bacterial genomes. The amplitude of the phenomenon is considered so high in prokaryotes that it challenges the traditional view of a binary hierarchical tree of life to correctly represent the evolutionary history of species. Given the plethora of transfers between prokaryotes, it is currently impossible to infer the last common ancestral gene set for any extant species. For this ensemble of reasons, it has been proposed that the Darwinian binary tree of life may be inappropriate to correctly reflect the actual relations between species, at least in prokaryotes. In contrast, the contribution of LGT to the composition of animal genomes is less documented. In the light of recent analyses that reported series of LGT events in nematodes, we discuss the importance of this phenomenon in the evolutionary history and in the current composition of an animal genome. Far from being neutral, it appears that besides having contributed to nematode genome contents, LGT have favored the emergence of important traits such as plant-parasitism.

  2. Lateral gene transfers have polished animal genomes: lessons from nematodes

    PubMed Central

    Danchin, Etienne G. J.; Rosso, Marie-Noëlle

    2012-01-01

    It is now accepted that lateral gene transfers (LGT), have significantly contributed to the composition of bacterial genomes. The amplitude of the phenomenon is considered so high in prokaryotes that it challenges the traditional view of a binary hierarchical tree of life to correctly represent the evolutionary history of species. Given the plethora of transfers between prokaryotes, it is currently impossible to infer the last common ancestral gene set for any extant species. For this ensemble of reasons, it has been proposed that the Darwinian binary tree of life may be inappropriate to correctly reflect the actual relations between species, at least in prokaryotes. In contrast, the contribution of LGT to the composition of animal genomes is less documented. In the light of recent analyses that reported series of LGT events in nematodes, we discuss the importance of this phenomenon in the evolutionary history and in the current composition of an animal genome. Far from being neutral, it appears that besides having contributed to nematode genome contents, LGT have favored the emergence of important traits such as plant-parasitism. PMID:22919619

  3. Eukaryotic origin of a metabolic pathway in virus by horizontal gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Wu, Dong-Dong; Zhang, Ya-Ping

    2011-11-01

    Horizontal gene transfer, the movement of genetic materials across the normal mating barriers between organisms occurs frequently and contributes significantly to the evolution of both eukaryotic and prokaryotic genomes. However, few concurrent transfers of functionally related genes implemented in a pathway from eukaryotes to prokaryotes are observed. Here, we did phylogenetic analyses to support that the genes, i.e. dihydrofolate reductase, glycine hydroxymethyltransferase, and thymidylate synthase involved in thymidylate metabolism, in Hz-1 virus were obtained from insect genome recently by independent horizontal gene transfers. In addition, five other related genes in nucleotide metabolism show evidences of horizontal gene transfers. These genes demonstrate similar expression pattern, and they may have formatted a functionally related pathway (e.g. thymidylate synthesis, and DNA replication) in Hz-1 virus. In conclusion, we provide an example of horizontal gene transfer of functionally related genes in a pathway to prokaryote from eukaryote. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Intra- and inter-generic transfer of pathogenicity island-encoded virulence genes by cos phages.

    PubMed

    Chen, John; Carpena, Nuria; Quiles-Puchalt, Nuria; Ram, Geeta; Novick, Richard P; Penadés, José R

    2015-05-01

    Bacteriophage-mediated horizontal gene transfer is one of the primary driving forces of bacterial evolution. The pac-type phages are generally thought to facilitate most of the phage-mediated gene transfer between closely related bacteria, including that of mobile genetic elements-encoded virulence genes. In this study, we report that staphylococcal cos-type phages transferred the Staphylococcus aureus pathogenicity island SaPIbov5 to non-aureus staphylococcal species and also to different genera. Our results describe the first intra- and intergeneric transfer of a pathogenicity island by a cos phage, and highlight a gene transfer mechanism that may have important implications for pathogen evolution.

  5. Human gene correlation analysis (HGCA): a tool for the identification of transcriptionally co-expressed genes.

    PubMed

    Michalopoulos, Ioannis; Pavlopoulos, Georgios A; Malatras, Apostolos; Karelas, Alexandros; Kostadima, Myrto-Areti; Schneider, Reinhard; Kossida, Sophia

    2012-06-06

    Bioinformatics and high-throughput technologies such as microarray studies allow the measure of the expression levels of large numbers of genes simultaneously, thus helping us to understand the molecular mechanisms of various biological processes in a cell. We calculate the Pearson Correlation Coefficient (r-value) between probe set signal values from Affymetrix Human Genome Microarray samples and cluster the human genes according to the r-value correlation matrix using the Neighbour Joining (NJ) clustering method. A hyper-geometric distribution is applied on the text annotations of the probe sets to quantify the term overrepresentations. The aim of the tool is the identification of closely correlated genes for a given gene of interest and/or the prediction of its biological function, which is based on the annotations of the respective gene cluster. Human Gene Correlation Analysis (HGCA) is a tool to classify human genes according to their coexpression levels and to identify overrepresented annotation terms in correlated gene groups. It is available at: http://biobank-informatics.bioacademy.gr/coexpression/.

  6. Site-Specific Gene Expression in Vivo by Direct Gene Transfer into the Arterial Wall

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nabel, Elizabeth G.; Plautz, Gregory; Nabel, Gary J.

    1990-09-01

    A recombinant β-galactosidase gene has been expressed in a specific arterial segment in vivo by direct infection with a murine amphotropic retroviral vector or by DNA transfection with the use of liposomes. Several cell types in the vessel wall were transduced, including endothelial and vascular smooth muscle cells. After retroviral infection, a recombinant reporter gene was expressed for at least 5 months, and no helper virus was detected. Recombinant gene expression achieved by direct retroviral infection or liposome-mediated DNA transfection was limited to the site of infection and was absent from liver, lung, kidney, and spleen. These results demonstrate that site-specific gene expression can be achieved by direct gene transfer in vivo and could be applied to the treatment of such human diseases as atherosclerosis or cancer.

  7. Simultaneous gene quantitation of multiple genes in individual bovine nuclear transfer blastocysts.

    PubMed

    Smith, Craig; Berg, Debbie; Beaumont, Sue; Standley, Neil T; Wells, David N; Pfeffer, Peter L

    2007-01-01

    During somatic cell nuclear transfer (NT), the transcriptional status of the donor cell has to be reprogrammed to reflect that of an embryo. We analysed the accuracy of this process by comparing transcript levels of four developmentally important genes (Oct4, Otx2, Ifitm3, GATA6), a gene involved in epigenetic regulation (Dnmt3a) and three housekeeping genes (beta-actin, beta-tubulin and GAPDH) in 21 NT blastocysts with that in genetically half-identical in vitro produced (IVP, n=19) and in vivo (n=15) bovine embryos. We have optimised an RNA-isolation and SYBR-green-based real-time RT-PCR procedure allowing the reproducible absolute quantification of multiple genes from a single blastocyst. Our data indicated that transcript levels did not differ significantly between stage and grade-matched zona-free NT and IVP embryos except for Ifitm3/Fragilis, which was expressed at twofold higher levels in NT blastocysts. Ifitm3 expression is confined to the inner cell mass at day 7 blastocysts and to the epiblast in day 14 embryos. No ectopic expression in the trophectoderm was seen in NT embryos. Gene expression in NT and IVP embryos increased between two- and threefold for all eight genes from early to late blastocyst stages. This increase exceeded the increase in cell number over this time period indicating an increase in transcript number per cell. Embryo quality (morphological grading) was correlated to cell number for NT and IVP embryos with grade 3 blastocysts containing 30% fewer cells. However, only NT embryos displayed a significant reduction in gene expression (50%) with loss of quality. Variability in gene expression levels was not significantly different in NT, IVP or in vivo embryos but differed among genes, suggesting that the stringency of regulation is intrinsic to a gene and not affected by culture or nuclear transfer. Oct4 levels exhibited the lowest variability. Analysing the total variability of all eight genes for individual embryos revealed that in

  8. Adaptive Horizontal Gene Transfers between Multiple Cheese-Associated Fungi

    PubMed Central

    Ropars, Jeanne; Rodríguez de la Vega, Ricardo C.; López-Villavicencio, Manuela; Gouzy, Jérôme; Sallet, Erika; Dumas, Émilie; Lacoste, Sandrine; Debuchy, Robert; Dupont, Joëlle; Branca, Antoine; Giraud, Tatiana

    2015-01-01

    Summary Domestication is an excellent model for studies of adaptation because it involves recent and strong selection on a few, identified traits [1–5]. Few studies have focused on the domestication of fungi, with notable exceptions [6–11], despite their importance to bioindustry [12] and to a general understanding of adaptation in eukaryotes [5]. Penicillium fungi are ubiquitous molds among which two distantly related species have been independently selected for cheese making—P. roqueforti for blue cheeses like Roquefort and P. camemberti for soft cheeses like Camembert. The selected traits include morphology, aromatic profile, lipolytic and proteolytic activities, and ability to grow at low temperatures, in a matrix containing bacterial and fungal competitors [13–15]. By comparing the genomes of ten Penicillium species, we show that adaptation to cheese was associated with multiple recent horizontal transfers of large genomic regions carrying crucial metabolic genes. We identified seven horizontally transferred regions (HTRs) spanning more than 10 kb each, flanked by specific transposable elements, and displaying nearly 100% identity between distant Penicillium species. Two HTRs carried genes with functions involved in the utilization of cheese nutrients or competition and were found nearly identical in multiple strains and species of cheese-associated Penicillium fungi, indicating recent selective sweeps; they were experimentally associated with faster growth and greater competitiveness on cheese and contained genes highly expressed in the early stage of cheese maturation. These findings have industrial and food safety implications and improve our understanding of the processes of adaptation to rapid environmental changes. PMID:26412136

  9. Synthetic Fatty Acids Prevent Plasmid-Mediated Horizontal Gene Transfer.

    PubMed

    Getino, María; Sanabria-Ríos, David J; Fernández-López, Raúl; Campos-Gómez, Javier; Sánchez-López, José M; Fernández, Antonio; Carballeira, Néstor M; de la Cruz, Fernando

    2015-09-01

    Bacterial conjugation constitutes a major horizontal gene transfer mechanism for the dissemination of antibiotic resistance genes among human pathogens. Antibiotic resistance spread could be halted or diminished by molecules that interfere with the conjugation process. In this work, synthetic 2-alkynoic fatty acids were identified as a novel class of conjugation inhibitors. Their chemical properties were investigated by using the prototype 2-hexadecynoic acid and its derivatives. Essential features of effective inhibitors were the carboxylic group, an optimal long aliphatic chain of 16 carbon atoms, and one unsaturation. Chemical modification of these groups led to inactive or less-active derivatives. Conjugation inhibitors were found to act on the donor cell, affecting a wide number of pathogenic bacterial hosts, including Escherichia, Salmonella, Pseudomonas, and Acinetobacter spp. Conjugation inhibitors were active in inhibiting transfer of IncF, IncW, and IncH plasmids, moderately active against IncI, IncL/M, and IncX plasmids, and inactive against IncP and IncN plasmids. Importantly, the use of 2-hexadecynoic acid avoided the spread of a derepressed IncF plasmid into a recipient population, demonstrating the feasibility of abolishing the dissemination of antimicrobial resistances by blocking bacterial conjugation. Diseases caused by multidrug-resistant bacteria are taking an important toll with respect to human morbidity and mortality. The most relevant antibiotic resistance genes come to human pathogens carried by plasmids, mainly using conjugation as a transmission mechanism. Here, we identified and characterized a series of compounds that were active against several plasmid groups of clinical relevance, in a wide variety of bacterial hosts. These inhibitors might be used for fighting antibiotic-resistance dissemination by inhibiting conjugation. Potential inhibitors could be used in specific settings (e.g., farm, fish factory, or even clinical settings) to

  10. Adaptive Horizontal Gene Transfers between Multiple Cheese-Associated Fungi.

    PubMed

    Ropars, Jeanne; Rodríguez de la Vega, Ricardo C; López-Villavicencio, Manuela; Gouzy, Jérôme; Sallet, Erika; Dumas, Émilie; Lacoste, Sandrine; Debuchy, Robert; Dupont, Joëlle; Branca, Antoine; Giraud, Tatiana

    2015-10-05

    Domestication is an excellent model for studies of adaptation because it involves recent and strong selection on a few, identified traits [1-5]. Few studies have focused on the domestication of fungi, with notable exceptions [6-11], despite their importance to bioindustry [12] and to a general understanding of adaptation in eukaryotes [5]. Penicillium fungi are ubiquitous molds among which two distantly related species have been independently selected for cheese making-P. roqueforti for blue cheeses like Roquefort and P. camemberti for soft cheeses like Camembert. The selected traits include morphology, aromatic profile, lipolytic and proteolytic activities, and ability to grow at low temperatures, in a matrix containing bacterial and fungal competitors [13-15]. By comparing the genomes of ten Penicillium species, we show that adaptation to cheese was associated with multiple recent horizontal transfers of large genomic regions carrying crucial metabolic genes. We identified seven horizontally transferred regions (HTRs) spanning more than 10 kb each, flanked by specific transposable elements, and displaying nearly 100% identity between distant Penicillium species. Two HTRs carried genes with functions involved in the utilization of cheese nutrients or competition and were found nearly identical in multiple strains and species of cheese-associated Penicillium fungi, indicating recent selective sweeps; they were experimentally associated with faster growth and greater competitiveness on cheese and contained genes highly expressed in the early stage of cheese maturation. These findings have industrial and food safety implications and improve our understanding of the processes of adaptation to rapid environmental changes. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  11. Area-specific cell stimulation via surface-mediated gene transfer using apatite-based composite layers.

    PubMed

    Yazaki, Yushin; Oyane, Ayako; Sogo, Yu; Ito, Atsuo; Yamazaki, Atsushi; Tsurushima, Hideo

    2015-04-14

    Surface-mediated gene transfer systems using biocompatible calcium phosphate (CaP)-based composite layers have attracted attention as a tool for controlling cell behaviors. In the present study we aimed to demonstrate the potential of CaP-based composite layers to mediate area-specific dual gene transfer and to stimulate cells on an area-by-area basis in the same well. For this purpose we prepared two pairs of DNA-fibronectin-apatite composite (DF-Ap) layers using a pair of reporter genes and pair of differentiation factor genes. The results of the area-specific dual gene transfer successfully demonstrated that the cells cultured on a pair of DF-Ap layers that were adjacently placed in the same well showed specific gene expression patterns depending on the gene that was immobilized in the underlying layer. Moreover, preliminary real-time PCR results indicated that multipotential C3H10T1/2 cells may have a potential to change into different types of cells depending on the differentiation factor gene that was immobilized in the underlying layer, even in the same well. Because DF-Ap layers have a potential to mediate area-specific cell stimulation on their surfaces, they could be useful in tissue engineering applications.

  12. Successful gene transfer into dendritic cells with cationized gelatin and plasmid DNA complexes via a phagocytosis-dependent mechanism.

    PubMed

    Inada, Satoshi; Fujiwara, Hitoshi; Atsuji, Kiyoto; Takashima, Kazuhiro; Araki, Yasunobu; Kubota, Takeshi; Tabata, Yasuhiko; Yamagishi, Hisakazu

    2006-01-01

    The use of gene-modified dendritic cells (DC) is a powerful tool to enhance antitumor immune responses stimulated by these cells in cancer immunotherapy. Cationized gelatin is preferably incorporated via phagocytosis and is gradually degraded by proteolysis while buffering lysosomal activity. This may be appropriate for gene transfer into phagocytic cells, such as immature DC. In the present study, successful transfection into monocyte-derived immature DC was demonstrated using cationized gelatin and plasmid DNA complexes. A high transfection efficiency, approaching 16%, was obtained upon transfection of the enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) gene as evaluated by flow cytometry. Transgene expression of EGFP and murine interleukin 12 were also detected by RT-PCR. The antigen-presenting capacity of the transfected DC was equal to that of untransfected DC as evaluated by the allogeneic mixed lymphocyte reaction. Cationized gelatin has the potential to be a unique non-viral vector for gene transfer into DC.

  13. Gene transfer into older chicken embryos by ex ovo electroporation.

    PubMed

    Luo, Jiankai; Yan, Xin; Lin, Juntang; Rolfs, Arndt

    2012-07-27

    The chicken embryo provides an excellent model system for studying gene function and regulation during embryonic development. In ovo electroporation is a powerful method to over-express exogenous genes or down-regulate endogenous genes in vivo in chicken embryos(1). Different structures such as DNA plasmids encoding genes(2-4), small interfering RNA (siRNA) plasmids(5), small synthetic RNA oligos(6), and morpholino antisense oligonucleotides(7) can be easily transfected into chicken embryos by electroporation. However, the application of in ovo electroporation is limited to embryos at early incubation stages (younger than stage HH20--according to Hamburg and Hamilton)(8) and there are some disadvantages for its application in embryos at later stages (older than stage HH22--approximately 3.5 days of development). For example, the vitelline membrane at later stages is usually stuck to the shall membrane and opening a window in the shell causes rupture of the vessels, resulting in death of the embryos; older embryos are covered by vitelline and allantoic vessels, where it is difficult to access and manipulate the embryos; older embryos move vigorously and is difficult to control the orientation through a relatively small window in the shell. In this protocol we demonstrate an ex ovo electroporation method for gene transfer into chicken embryos at late stages (older than stage HH22). For ex ovo electroporation, embryos are cultured in Petri dishes(9) and the vitelline and allantoic vessels are widely spread. Under these conditions, the older chicken embryos are easily accessed and manipulated. Therefore, this method overcomes the disadvantages of in ovo electroporation applied to the older chicken embryos. Using this method, plasmids can be easily transfected into different parts of the older chicken embryos(10-12).

  14. Comparative analysis of magnetosome gene clusters in magnetotactic bacteria provides further evidence for horizontal gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Jogler, Christian; Kube, Michael; Schübbe, Sabrina; Ullrich, Susanne; Teeling, Hanno; Bazylinski, Dennis A; Reinhardt, Richard; Schüler, Dirk

    2009-05-01

    The organization of magnetosome genes was analysed in all available complete or partial genomic sequences of magnetotactic bacteria (MTB), including the magnetosome island (MAI) of the magnetotactic marine vibrio strain MV-1 determined in this study. The MAI was found to differ in gene content and organization between Magnetospirillum species and strains MV-1 or MC-1. Although a similar organization of magnetosome genes was found in all MTB, distinct variations in gene order and sequence similarity were uncovered that may account for the observed diversity of biomineralization, cell biology and magnetotaxis found in various MTB. While several magnetosome genes were present in all MTB, others were confined to Magnetospirillum species, indicating that the minimal set of genes required for magnetosome biomineralization might be smaller than previously suggested. A number of novel candidate genes were implicated in magnetosome formation by gene cluster comparison. Based on phylogenetic and compositional evidence we present a model for the evolution of magnetotaxis within the Alphaproteobacteria, which suggests the independent horizontal transfer of magnetosome genes from an unknown ancestor of magnetospirilla into strains MC-1 and MV-1.

  15. Analysis of novel nonviral gene transfer systems for gene delivery to cells of the musculoskeletal system.

    PubMed

    Orth, Patrick; Weimer, Anja; Kaul, Gunter; Kohn, Dieter; Cucchiarini, Magali; Madry, Henning

    2008-02-01

    The aim of the present study was to evaluate the efficacy of novel nonviral gene delivery systems in cells of musculoskeletal origin. Primary cultures of lapine skeletal muscle cells, lapine articular chondrocytes, human cells from fibrous dysplasia and cell lines established from human osteosarcoma (SAOS-2), chondrosarcoma (CS-1), murine skeletal myoblasts (L8) and fibroblasts (NIH 3T3) were transfected with the P. pyralis luc or the E. coli lacZ genes using Nanofectin 1 and 2, Superfect, JetPEI, GeneJammer, Effectene, TransPass D2, FuGENE 6, Lipofectamine 2000, Dreamfect, Metafectene, Escort III, and calcium phosphate. Maximal transfection efficiency in lapine skeletal muscle cells was of 60.8 +/- 21.2% using Dreamfect, 38.9 +/- 5.0% in articular chondrocytes using Gene Jammer, 5.2 +/- 8.0% in human cells from fibrous dysplasia using Lipofectamine 2000, 12.7 +/- 16.2% in SAOS-2 cells using FuGENE 6, 29.9 +/- 3.5% in CS-1 cells using Lipofectamine 2000, 70.7 +/- 8.6% in L8 cells using FuGENE 6, and 48.9 +/- 13.0% in NIH 3T3 cells using Metafectene. When the cells were transfected with a human IGF-I gene, significant amounts of the IGF-I protein were secreted. These results indicate that relatively high levels of transfection can be achieved using novel nonviral gene transfer methods.

  16. Effective generation of transgenic pigs and mice by linker based sperm-mediated gene transfer.

    PubMed Central

    2002-01-01

    Background Transgenic animals have become valuable tools for both research and applied purposes. The current method of gene transfer, microinjection, which is widely used in transgenic mouse production, has only had limited success in producing transgenic animals of larger or higher species. Here, we report a linker based sperm-mediated gene transfer method (LB-SMGT) that greatly improves the production efficiency of large transgenic animals. Results The linker protein, a monoclonal antibody (mAb C), is reactive to a surface antigen on sperm of all tested species including pig, mouse, chicken, cow, goat, sheep, and human. mAb C is a basic protein that binds to DNA through ionic interaction allowing exogenous DNA to be linked specifically to sperm. After fertilization of the egg, the DNA is shown to be successfully integrated into the genome of viable pig and mouse offspring with germ-line transfer to the F1 generation at a highly efficient rate: 37.5% of pigs and 33% of mice. The integration is demonstrated again by FISH analysis and F2 transmission in pigs. Furthermore, expression of the transgene is demonstrated in 61% (35/57) of transgenic pigs (F0 generation). Conclusions Our data suggests that LB-SMGT could be used to generate transgenic animals efficiently in many different species. PMID:11964188

  17. Foamy virus–mediated gene transfer to canine repopulating cells

    PubMed Central

    Kiem, Hans-Peter; Allen, James; Trobridge, Grant; Olson, Erik; Keyser, Kirsten; Peterson, Laura; Russell, David W.

    2007-01-01

    Foamy virus (FV) vectors are particularly attractive gene-transfer vectors for stem-cell gene therapy because they form a stable transduction intermediate in quiescent cells and can efficiently transduce hematopoietic stem cells. Here, we studied the use of FV vectors to transduce long-term hematopoietic repopulating cells in the dog, a clinically relevant large animal model. Mobilized canine peripheral blood (PB) CD34+ cells were transduced with an enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP)–expressing FV vector in an 18-hour transduction protocol. All 3 dogs studied had rapid neutrophil engraftment to greater than 500/μL with a median of 10 days. Transgene expression was detected in all cell lineages (B cells, T cells, granulocytes, red blood cells, and platelets), indicating multilineage engraftment of transduced cells. Up to 19% of blood cells were EGFP+, and this was confirmed at the DNA level by real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and Southern blot analysis. These transduction rates were higher than the best results we obtained previously with lentiviral vectors in a similar transduction protocol. Integration site analysis also demonstrated polyclonal repopulation and the transduction of multipotential hematopoietic repopulating cells. These data suggest that FV vectors should be useful for stem-cell gene therapy, particularly for applications in which short transduction protocols are critical. PMID:16968897

  18. Ultrasound Gene Transfer into Fibroblast Cells using Microbubbles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakamura, Yoji; Hirayama, Kota; Yoshinaka, Kiyoshi; Tei, Yuichi; Takagi, Shu; Matsumoto, Yoichiro

    2009-04-01

    Ultrasound is widely applied in the medical field and offers the strong advantages of non-invasiveness and high-selectivity. Gene transfer using ultrasound, which is called sonoporation, is one application. Ultrasound has the potential to deliver therapeutic materials such as genes, drugs or proteins into cells. Microbubbles are known to be able to improve delivery efficiency. This is attributed to therapeutic materials passing through the cell membrane after permeability is increased by destruction or oscillation of microbubbles. The present study tried to deliver the GFP plasmids into fibroblast cells. Cells were cultured in 6-well culture plates and exposed to ultrasound (frequency, 2.1 MHz; wave pattern, duty cycle 10%; intensity, 0-26 W/cm2; time, 0-200 s) transmitted through medium containing microbubbles (Levovist® (void fraction, 8×10-5) or Sonazoid® (void fraction, 0-24×10-4)) and GFP plasmids at a concentration of 15 μg/mL. Density of microbubbles after ultrasound irradiation was measured. When ultrasound intensity was increased with Levovist® 8×10-4, transfection efficiency increased, cell viability decreased and microbubbles disappeared. With Sonazoid®, transfection efficiency and cell viability were basically unchanged and microbubbles decreased, but did not disappear. Transfection efficiency also improved with increased ultrasound irradiation time or microbubble density. Microbubble destruction appeared to have the main effect on gene transfection under Levovist® and microbubble oscillation had the main effect under Sonazoid®.

  19. CEP290 gene transfer rescues Leber Congenital Amaurosis cellular phenotype

    PubMed Central

    Burnight, E.R.; Wiley, L.A.; Drack, A.V.; Braun, T.A.; Anfinson, K.R.; Kaalberg, E.E.; Halder, J.A.; Affatigato, L.M.; Mullins, R.F.; Stone, E.M.; Tucker, B.A.

    2014-01-01

    Mutations in CEP290 are the most common cause of Leber congenital amaurosis (LCA), a severe inherited retinal degenerative disease for which there is currently no cure. Autosomal recessive CEP290-associated LCA is a good candidate for gene-replacement therapy, and cells derived from affected individuals give researchers the ability to study human disease and therapeutic gene correction in vitro. Here we report the development of lentiviral vectors carrying full-length CEP290 for the purpose of correcting the CEP290 disease-specific phenotype in human cells. A lentiviral vector containing CMV-driven human full-length CEP290 was constructed. Following transduction of patient-specific, iPSC-derived, photoreceptor precursor cells, rt-PCR analysis and western blotting revealed vector-derived expression. Because CEP290 is important in ciliogenesis, the ability of fibroblast cultures from CEP290-associated LCA patients to form cilia was investigated. In cultures derived from these patients, fewer cells formed cilia compared to unaffected controls. Cilia that were formed were shorter in patient derived cells than in cells from unaffected individuals. Importantly, lentiviral delivery of CEP290 rescued the ciliogenesis defect. The successful construction and viral transfer of full-length CEP290 brings us closer to the goal of providing gene- and cell- based therapies for patients affected with this common form of LCA. PMID:24807808

  20. Phylogenetic analyses of cyanobacterial genomes: Quantification of horizontal gene transfer events

    PubMed Central

    Zhaxybayeva, Olga; Gogarten, J. Peter; Charlebois, Robert L.; Doolittle, W. Ford; Papke, R. Thane

    2006-01-01

    Using 1128 protein-coding gene families from 11 completely sequenced cyanobacterial genomes, we attempt to quantify horizontal gene transfer events within cyanobacteria, as well as between cyanobacteria and other phyla. A novel method of detecting and enumerating potential horizontal gene transfer events within a group of organisms based on analyses of “embedded quartets” allows us to identify phylogenetic signal consistent with a plurality of gene families, as well as to delineate cases of conflict to the plurality signal, which include horizontally transferred genes. To infer horizontal gene transfer events between cyanobacteria and other phyla, we added homologs from 168 available genomes. We screened phylogenetic trees reconstructed for each of these extended gene families for highly supported monophyly of cyanobacteria (or lack of it). Cyanobacterial genomes reveal a complex evolutionary history, which cannot be represented by a single strictly bifurcating tree for all genes or even most genes, although a single completely resolved phylogeny was recovered from the quartets’ plurality signals. We find more conflicts within cyanobacteria than between cyanobacteria and other phyla. We also find that genes from all functional categories are subject to transfer. However, in interphylum as compared to intraphylum transfers, the proportion of metabolic (operational) gene transfers increases, while the proportion of informational gene transfers decreases. PMID:16899658

  1. Developing Low-Conductance Window Frames: Capabilities and Limitations of Current Window Heat Transfer Design Tools

    SciTech Connect

    Gustavsen, Arild; Arasteh, Dariush; Jelle, Bjorn Petter; Curcija, Charlie; Kohler, Christian

    2008-09-11

    While window frames typically represent 20-30% of the overall window area, their impact on the total window heat transfer rates may be much larger. This effect is even greater in low-conductance (highly insulating) windows that incorporate very low-conductance glazing. Developing low-conductance window frames requires accurate simulation tools for product research and development. Based on a literature review and an evaluation of current methods of modeling heat transfer through window frames, we conclude that current procedures specified in ISO standards are not sufficiently adequate for accurately evaluating heat transfer through the low-conductance frames. We conclude that the near-term priorities for improving the modeling of heat transfer through low-conductance frames are: (1) Add 2D view-factor radiation to standard modeling and examine the current practice of averaging surface emissivity based on area weighting and the process of making an equivalent rectangular frame cavity. (2) Asses 3D radiation effects in frame cavities and develop recommendation for inclusion into the design fenestration tools. (3) Assess existing correlations for convection in vertical cavities using CFD. (4) Study 2D and 3D natural convection heat transfer in frame cavities for cavities that are proven to be deficient from item 3 above. Recommend improved correlations or full CFD modeling into ISO standards and design fenestration tools, if appropriate. (5) Study 3D hardware short-circuits and propose methods to ensure that these effects are incorporated into ratings. (6) Study the heat transfer effects of ventilated frame cavities and propose updated correlations.

  2. Reconstructability analysis as a tool for identifying gene-gene interactions in studies of human diseases.

    PubMed

    Shervais, Stephen; Kramer, Patricia L; Westaway, Shawn K; Cox, Nancy J; Zwick, Martin

    2010-01-01

    There are a number of common human diseases for which the genetic component may include an epistatic interaction of multiple genes. Detecting these interactions with standard statistical tools is difficult because there may be an interaction effect, but minimal or no main effect. Reconstructability analysis (RA) uses Shannon's information theory to detect relationships between variables in categorical datasets. We applied RA to simulated data for five different models of gene-gene interaction, and find that even with heritability levels as low as 0.008, and with the inclusion of 50 non-associated genes in the dataset, we can identify the interacting gene pairs with an accuracy of > or =80%. We applied RA to a real dataset of type 2 non-insulin-dependent diabetes (NIDDM) cases and controls, and closely approximated the results of more conventional single SNP disease association studies. In addition, we replicated prior evidence for epistatic interactions between SNPs on chromosomes 2 and 15.

  3. Fluorescent Resonance Energy Transfer: A Tool for Probing Molecular Cell-Biomaterial Interactions in Three Dimensions

    PubMed Central

    Huebsch, Nathaniel D.; Mooney, David J.

    2007-01-01

    The current paradigm in designing biomaterials is to optimize material chemical and physical parameters based on correlations between these parameters and downstream biological responses, whether in vitro or in vivo. Extensive developments in molecular design of biomaterials have facilitated identification of several biophysical and biochemical variables (e.g. adhesion peptide density, substrate elastic modulus) as being critical to cell response. However, these empirical observations do not indicate whether different parameters elicit cell responses by modulating redundant variables of the cell-material interface (e.g. number of cell-material bonds, cell-matrix mechanics). Recently, a molecular fluorescence technique, Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer (FRET) has been applied to quantitatively analyze parameters of the cell-material interface for both two and three-dimensional adhesion substrates. Tools based on FRET have been utilized to quantify several parameters of the cell-material interface relevant to cell response, including molecular changes in matrix proteins induced by interactions both with surfaces and cells, the number of bonds between integrins and their adhesion ligands, and changes in the crosslink density of hydrogel synthetic extracellular matrix analogs. As such techniques allow both dynamic and 3D analyses they will be useful to quantitatively relate downstream cellular responses (e.g. gene expression) to the composition of this interface. Such understanding will allow bioengineers to fully exploit the potential of biomaterials engineered on the molecular scale, by optimizing material chemical and physical properties to a measurable set of interfacial parameters known to elicit a predictable response in a specific cell population. This will facilitate the rational design of complex, multi-functional biomaterials used as model systems for studying diseases or for clinical applications. PMID:17270268

  4. How 24-Month-Olds Form and Transfer Knowledge about Tools: The Role of Perceptual, Functional, Causal, and Feedback Information

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bechtel, Sabrina; Jeschonek, Susanna; Pauen, Sabina

    2013-01-01

    This study investigated cognitive processes underlying tool use and knowledge transfer in 24-month-olds (N = 123). Following a demonstration, participants chose a tool to reach a reward in a training transfer paradigm. Differing from previous research, various aspects considered to be relevant for children's performance were integrated within the…

  5. DNS and Embedded DNS as Tools for Investigating Unsteady Heat Transfer Phenomena in Turbines

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    vonTerzi, Dominic; Bauer, H.-J.

    2010-01-01

    DNS is a powerful tool with high potential for investigating unsteady heat transfer and fluid flow phenomena, in particular for cases involving transition to turbulence and/or large coherent structures. - DNS of idealized configurations related to turbomachinery components is already possible. - For more realistic configurations and the inclusion of more effects, reduction of computational cost is key issue (e.g., hybrid methods). - Approach pursued here: Embedded DNS ( segregated coupling of DNS with LES and/or RANS). - Embedded DNS is an enabling technology for many studies. - Pre-transitional heat transfer and trailing-edge cutback film-cooling are good candidates for (embedded) DNS studies.

  6. Updated clusters of orthologous genes for Archaea: a complex ancestor of the Archaea and the byways of horizontal gene transfer

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Collections of Clusters of Orthologous Genes (COGs) provide indispensable tools for comparative genomic analysis, evolutionary reconstruction and functional annotation of new genomes. Initially, COGs were made for all complete genomes of cellular life forms that were available at the time. However, with the accumulation of thousands of complete genomes, construction of a comprehensive COG set has become extremely computationally demanding and prone to error propagation, necessitating the switch to taxon-specific COG collections. Previously, we reported the collection of COGs for 41 genomes of Archaea (arCOGs). Here we present a major update of the arCOGs and describe evolutionary reconstructions to reveal general trends in the evolution of Archaea. Results The updated version of the arCOG database incorporates 91% of the pangenome of 120 archaea (251,032 protein-coding genes altogether) into 10,335 arCOGs. Using this new set of arCOGs, we performed maximum likelihood reconstruction of the genome content of archaeal ancestral forms and gene gain and loss events in archaeal evolution. This reconstruction shows that the last Common Ancestor of the extant Archaea was an organism of greater complexity than most of the extant archaea, probably with over 2,500 protein-coding genes. The subsequent evolution of almost all archaeal lineages was apparently dominated by gene loss resulting in genome streamlining. Overall, in the evolution of Archaea as well as a representative set of bacteria that was similarly analyzed for comparison, gene losses are estimated to outnumber gene gains at least 4 to 1. Analysis of specific patterns of gene gain in Archaea shows that, although some groups, in particular Halobacteria, acquire substantially more genes than others, on the whole, gene exchange between major groups of Archaea appears to be largely random, with no major ‘highways’ of horizontal gene transfer. Conclusions The updated collection of arCOGs is expected to

  7. Supra-operonic clusters of functionally related genes (SOCs) are a source of horizontal gene co-transfers

    PubMed Central

    Pang, Tin Yau; Lercher, Martin J.

    2017-01-01

    Adaptation of bacteria occurs predominantly via horizontal gene transfer (HGT). While it is widely recognized that horizontal acquisitions frequently encompass multiple genes, it is unclear what the size distribution of successfully transferred DNA segments looks like and what evolutionary forces shape this distribution. Here, we identified 1790 gene family pairs that were consistently co-gained on the same branches across a phylogeny of 53 E. coli strains. We estimated a lower limit of their genomic distances at the time they were transferred to their host genomes; this distribution shows a sharp upper bound at 30 kb. The same gene-pairs can have larger distances (up to 70 kb) in other genomes. These more distant pairs likely represent recent acquisitions via transduction that involve the co-transfer of excised prophage genes, as they are almost always associated with intervening phage-associated genes. The observed distribution of genomic distances of co-transferred genes is much broader than expected from a model based on the co-transfer of genes within operons; instead, this distribution is highly consistent with the size distribution of supra-operonic clusters (SOCs), groups of co-occurring and co-functioning genes that extend beyond operons. Thus, we propose that SOCs form a basic unit of horizontal gene transfer. PMID:28067311

  8. The GATO gene annotation tool for research laboratories.

    PubMed

    Fujita, A; Massirer, K B; Durham, A M; Ferreira, C E; Sogayar, M C

    2005-11-01

    Large-scale genome projects have generated a rapidly increasing number of DNA sequences. Therefore, development of computational methods to rapidly analyze these sequences is essential for progress in genomic research. Here we present an automatic annotation system for preliminary analysis of DNA sequences. The gene annotation tool (GATO) is a Bioinformatics pipeline designed to facilitate routine functional annotation and easy access to annotated genes. It was designed in view of the frequent need of genomic researchers to access data pertaining to a common set of genes. In the GATO system, annotation is generated by querying some of the Web-accessible resources and the information is stored in a local database, which keeps a record of all previous annotation results. GATO may be accessed from everywhere through the internet or may be run locally if a large number of sequences are going to be annotated. It is implemented in PHP and Perl and may be run on any suitable Web server. Usually, installation and application of annotation systems require experience and are time consuming, but GATO is simple and practical, allowing anyone with basic skills in informatics to access it without any special training. GATO can be downloaded at [http://mariwork.iq.usp.br/gato/]. Minimum computer free space required is 2 MB.

  9. Radioiodine therapy of thyroid carcinoma following Pax-8 gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Mu, D; Huang, R; Ma, X; Li, S; Kuang, A

    2012-04-01

    The thyroid transcription factor Pax-8 could bind with the promoter/enhancer of thyroid-specific genes such as thyroglobulin (Tg), thyroperoxidase (TPO) and sodium iodide symporter (NIS), and regulate the expression of these proteins in thyrocyte. Promoting iodide accumulation in tumor cells by re-expression of Pax-8 provides a possible strategy for radioiodine therapy of tumor. Therefore, we investigated the effect of Pax-8 gene transfer on radioiodine therapy of thyroid carcinoma. The human Pax-8 gene was transfected into the human thyroid carcinoma (K1 and F133) cells by the recombinant adenovirus vector. Although the NIS mRNA was not detected, the expression of mRNA and proteins of Tg and TPO in AdPax-8-infected F133 cells were activated by Pax-8. Iodide uptake in thyroid carcinoma cells was reactivated by Pax-8 (increasing 3.3-fold in K1 cells and 5.7-fold in F133 cells). Moreover, Pax-8 promoted iodide organification and the retention time of iodine in Pax-8-expressing cells apparently prolonged in vitro and in vivo (P<0.05). Pax-8-expressing thyroid carcinoma cells were selectively killed by radioiodine. The AdPax-8-infected tumors in vivo clearly visualized in scanning images at 12 h after administration of radioiodine. These results indicate that Pax-8 can promote iodide uptake, and specifically prolong the retention time of iodide in thyroid cancer in vitro and in vivo by promoting the expression of TPO and Tg proteins. Pax-8 gene transfection may lead to effective radioiodine therapy of tumor.

  10. Horizontal gene transfer and gene dosage drives adaptation to wood colonization in a tree pathogen

    DOE PAGES

    Dhillon, Braham; Feau, Nicolas; Aerts, Andrea L.; ...

    2015-03-02

    Some of the most damaging tree diseases are caused by pathogens that induce cankers, a stem deformation often lethal. To investigate the cause of this adaptation, we sequenced the genomes of poplar pathogens that do and do not cause cankers. We found a unique cluster of genes that produce secondary metabolites and are co-activated when the canker pathogen is grown on poplar wood and leaves. The gene genealogy is discordant with the species phylogeny, showing a signature of horizontal transfer from fungi associated with wood decay. Furthermore, genes encoding hemicellulose-degrading enzymes are up-regulated on poplar wood chips, with some havingmore » been acquired horizontally. In conclusion, we propose that adaptation to colonize poplar woody stems is the result of acquisition of these genes.« less

  11. Horizontal gene transfer and gene dosage drives adaptation to wood colonization in a tree pathogen

    SciTech Connect

    Dhillon, Braham; Feau, Nicolas; Aerts, Andrea L.; Beauseigle, Stéphanie; Bernier, Louis; Copeland, Alex; Foster, Adam; Gill, Navdeep; Henrissat, Bernard; Herath, Padmini; LaButti, Kurt M.; Levasseur, Anthony; Lindquist, Erika A.; Majoor, Eline; Ohm, Robin A.; Pangilinan, Jasmyn L.; Pribowo, Amadeus; Saddler, John N.; Sakalidis, Monique L.; de Vries, Ronald P.; Grigoriev, Igor V.; Goodwin, Stephen B.; Tanguay, Philippe; Hamelin, Richard C.

    2015-03-02

    Some of the most damaging tree diseases are caused by pathogens that induce cankers, a stem deformation often lethal. To investigate the cause of this adaptation, we sequenced the genomes of poplar pathogens that do and do not cause cankers. We found a unique cluster of genes that produce secondary metabolites and are co-activated when the canker pathogen is grown on poplar wood and leaves. The gene genealogy is discordant with the species phylogeny, showing a signature of horizontal transfer from fungi associated with wood decay. Furthermore, genes encoding hemicellulose-degrading enzymes are up-regulated on poplar wood chips, with some having been acquired horizontally. In conclusion, we propose that adaptation to colonize poplar woody stems is the result of acquisition of these genes.

  12. Studies of DEAE-dextran-mediated gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Yang, Y W; Yang, J C

    1997-02-01

    DEAE-dextran-mediated gene transfer was studied for the introduction of pSV2neo DNA into Fisher-rat 3T3 (FR3T3) cells. Zeta (zeta) potentials of the DEAE-dextran-DNA complexes and FR3T3 cells were found to be dependent on the concentration of DEAE-dextran in the medium. The maximum transfection efficiency occurred at a DEAE-dextran/DNA ratio of 50:1 or thereabouts. The interaction between DNA and cells is determined by the adsorption process. The results obtained, along with the correlation between the kinetic adsorption behaviour of 3H-labelled DNA and the transfection efficiency, indicated that adsorption of DEAE-dextran-DNA complexes to the negatively charged cell surfaces, due to electrostatic and dispersion attraction, plays the decisive role in determining the DNA transfection efficiencies.

  13. Horizontal gene transfer: building the web of life.

    PubMed

    Soucy, Shannon M; Huang, Jinling; Gogarten, Johann Peter

    2015-08-01

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is the sharing of genetic material between organisms that are not in a parent-offspring relationship. HGT is a widely recognized mechanism for adaptation in bacteria and archaea. Microbial antibiotic resistance and pathogenicity are often associated with HGT, but the scope of HGT extends far beyond disease-causing organisms. In this Review, we describe how HGT has shaped the web of life using examples of HGT among prokaryotes, between prokaryotes and eukaryotes, and even between multicellular eukaryotes. We discuss replacement and additive HGT, the proposed mechanisms of HGT, selective forces that influence HGT, and the evolutionary impact of HGT on ancestral populations and existing populations such as the human microbiome.

  14. Statistical Mechanics of Horizontal Gene Transfer in Evolutionary Ecology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chia, Nicholas; Goldenfeld, Nigel

    2011-04-01

    The biological world, especially its majority microbial component, is strongly interacting and may be dominated by collective effects. In this review, we provide a brief introduction for statistical physicists of the way in which living cells communicate genetically through transferred genes, as well as the ways in which they can reorganize their genomes in response to environmental pressure. We discuss how genome evolution can be thought of as related to the physical phenomenon of annealing, and describe the sense in which genomes can be said to exhibit an analogue of information entropy. As a direct application of these ideas, we analyze the variation with ocean depth of transposons in marine microbial genomes, predicting trends that are consistent with recent observations using metagenomic surveys.

  15. Immunomodulation by mucosal gene transfer using TGF-beta DNA.

    PubMed Central

    Kuklin, N A; Daheshia, M; Chun, S; Rouse, B T

    1998-01-01

    This report evaluates the efficacy of DNA encoding TGF-beta administered mucosally to suppress immunity and modulate the immunoinflammatory response to herpes simplex virus (HSV) infection. A single intranasal administration of an eukaryotic expression vector encoding TGF-beta1 led to expression in the lung and lymphoid tissue. T cell-mediated immune responses to HSV infection were suppressed with this effect persisting as measured by the delayed-type hypersensitivity reaction for at least 7 wk. Treated animals were more susceptible to systemic infection with HSV. Multiple prophylactic mucosal administrations of TGF-beta DNA also suppressed the severity of ocular lesions caused by HSV infection, although no effects on this immunoinflammatory response were evident after therapeutic treatment with TGF-beta DNA. Our results demonstrate that the direct mucosal gene transfer of immunomodulatory cytokines provides a convenient means of modulating immunity and influencing the expression of inflammatory disorders. PMID:9664086

  16. Extensive Intra-Kingdom Horizontal Gene Transfer Converging on a Fungal Fructose Transporter Gene

    PubMed Central

    Coelho, Marco A.; Gonçalves, Carla; Sampaio, José Paulo; Gonçalves, Paula

    2013-01-01

    Comparative genomics revealed in the last decade a scenario of rampant horizontal gene transfer (HGT) among prokaryotes, but for fungi a clearly dominant pattern of vertical inheritance still stands, punctuated however by an increasing number of exceptions. In the present work, we studied the phylogenetic distribution and pattern of inheritance of a fungal gene encoding a fructose transporter (FSY1) with unique substrate selectivity. 109 FSY1 homologues were identified in two sub-phyla of the Ascomycota, in a survey that included 241 available fungal genomes. At least 10 independent inter-species instances of horizontal gene transfer (HGT) involving FSY1 were identified, supported by strong phylogenetic evidence and synteny analyses. The acquisition of FSY1 through HGT was sometimes suggestive of xenolog gene displacement, but several cases of pseudoparalogy were also uncovered. Moreover, evidence was found for successive HGT events, possibly including those responsible for transmission of the gene among yeast lineages. These occurrences do not seem to be driven by functional diversification of the Fsy1 proteins because Fsy1 homologues from widely distant lineages, including at least one acquired by HGT, appear to have similar biochemical properties. In summary, retracing the evolutionary path of the FSY1 gene brought to light an unparalleled number of independent HGT events involving a single fungal gene. We propose that the turbulent evolutionary history of the gene may be linked to the unique biochemical properties of the encoded transporter, whose predictable effect on fitness may be highly variable. In general, our results support the most recent views suggesting that inter-species HGT may have contributed much more substantially to shape fungal genomes than heretofore assumed. PMID:23818872

  17. The Impact of Gene Silencing on Horizontal Gene Transfer and Bacterial Evolution.

    PubMed

    Navarre, W W

    2016-01-01

    The H-NS family of DNA-binding proteins is the subject of intense study due to its important roles in the regulation of horizontally acquired genes critical for virulence, antibiotic resistance, and metabolism. Xenogeneic silencing proteins, typified by the H-NS protein of Escherichia coli, specifically target and downregulate expression from AT-rich genes by selectively recognizing specific structural features unique to the AT-rich minor groove. In doing so, these proteins facilitate bacterial evolution; enabling these cells to engage in horizontal gene transfer while buffering potential any detrimental fitness consequences that may result from it. Xenogeneic silencing and counter-silencing explain how bacterial cells can evolve effective gene regulatory strategies in the face of rampant gene gain and loss and it has extended our understanding of bacterial gene regulation beyond the classic operon model. Here we review the structures and mechanisms of xenogeneic silencers as well as their impact on bacterial evolution. Several H-NS-like proteins appear to play a role in facilitating gene transfer by other mechanisms including by regulating transposition, conjugation, and participating in the activation of virulence loci like the locus of enterocyte effacement pathogenicity island of pathogenic strains of E. coli. Evidence suggests that the critical determinants that dictate whether an H-NS-like protein will be a silencer or will perform a different function do not lie in the DNA-binding domain but, rather, in the domains that control oligomerization. This suggests that H-NS-like proteins are transcription factors that both recognize and alter the shape of DNA to exert specific effects that include but are not limited to gene silencing. © 2016 Elsevier Ltd All rights reserved.

  18. Applying horizontal gene transfer phenomena to enhance non-viral gene therapy

    PubMed Central

    Elmer, Jacob J.; Christensen, Matthew D.; Rege, Kaushal

    2014-01-01

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is widespread amongst prokaryotes, but eukaryotes tend to be far less promiscuous with their genetic information. However, several examples of HGT from pathogens into eukaryotic cells have been discovered and mimicked to improve non-viral gene delivery techniques. For example, several viral proteins and DNA sequences have been used to significantly increase cytoplasmic and nuclear gene delivery. Plant genetic engineering is routinely performed with the pathogenic bacterium Agrobacterium tumefaciens and similar pathogens (e.g. Bartonella henselae) may also be able to transform human cells. Intracellular parasites like Trypanosoma cruzi may also provide new insights into overcoming cellular barriers to gene delivery. Finally, intercellular nucleic acid transfer between host cells will also be briefly discussed. This article will review the unique characteristics of several different viruses and microbes and discuss how their traits have been successfully applied to improve non-viral gene delivery techniques. Consequently, pathogenic traits that originally caused diseases may eventually be used to treat many genetic diseases. PMID:23994344

  19. The seamless transfer of care: a pilot study assessing the usability of an electronic transfer of care communication tool.

    PubMed

    Santana, Maria Jose; Holroyd-Leduc, Jayna; Flemons, William Ward; O'Beirne, Maeve; White, Deborah; Clayden, Nancy; Forster, Alan J; Ghali, William A

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this pilot study was to explore the feasibility of implementing a new electronic transfer of care (TOC) tool. The study was conducted in a Canadian tertiary care center. Brief survey instruments were completed by acute care physicians, community-based physicians, and patients to assess providers' perspectives on the usability of the novel electronic tool. The units of analysis were physician and patient perceptions. Mixed methods were used including descriptive statistical analyses and qualitative thematic analysis. Twenty-eight unique acute care physicians completed 100 electronic TOC summaries, and 44 unique community-based physicians rated quality and pertinence of the summaries. Twenty-two patients responded to a follow-up telephone call. The novel TOC communication tool was generally well received by physicians and patients, and it is now being evaluated in a large-scale clinical trial assessing hard clinical outcomes. The information presented herein provides a template for assessment of such information system innovations. © 2013 by the American College of Medical Quality.

  20. Widespread impact of horizontal gene transfer on plant colonization of land

    PubMed Central

    Yue, Jipei; Hu, Xiangyang; Sun, Hang; Yang, Yongping; Huang, Jinling

    2012-01-01

    In complex multicellular eukaryotes such as animals and plants, horizontal gene transfer is commonly considered rare with very limited evolutionary significance. Here we show that horizontal gene transfer is a dynamic process occurring frequently in the early evolution of land plants. Our genome analyses of the moss Physcomitrella patens identified 57 families of nuclear genes that were acquired from prokaryotes, fungi or viruses. Many of these gene families were transferred to the ancestors of green or land plants. Available experimental evidence shows that these anciently acquired genes are involved in some essential or plant-specific activities such as xylem formation, plant defence, nitrogen recycling as well as the biosynthesis of starch, polyamines, hormones and glutathione. These findings suggest that horizontal gene transfer had a critical role in the transition of plants from aquatic to terrestrial environments. On the basis of these findings, we propose a model of horizontal gene transfer mechanism in nonvascular and seedless vascular plants. PMID:23093189

  1. Widespread impact of horizontal gene transfer on plant colonization of land.

    PubMed

    Yue, Jipei; Hu, Xiangyang; Sun, Hang; Yang, Yongping; Huang, Jinling

    2012-01-01

    In complex multicellular eukaryotes such as animals and plants, horizontal gene transfer is commonly considered rare with very limited evolutionary significance. Here we show that horizontal gene transfer is a dynamic process occurring frequently in the early evolution of land plants. Our genome analyses of the moss Physcomitrella patens identified 57 families of nuclear genes that were acquired from prokaryotes, fungi or viruses. Many of these gene families were transferred to the ancestors of green or land plants. Available experimental evidence shows that these anciently acquired genes are involved in some essential or plant-specific activities such as xylem formation, plant defence, nitrogen recycling as well as the biosynthesis of starch, polyamines, hormones and glutathione. These findings suggest that horizontal gene transfer had a critical role in the transition of plants from aquatic to terrestrial environments. On the basis of these findings, we propose a model of horizontal gene transfer mechanism in nonvascular and seedless vascular plants.

  2. Flexible tools for gene expression and silencing in tomato.

    PubMed

    Fernandez, Ana I; Viron, Nicolas; Alhagdow, Moftah; Karimi, Mansour; Jones, Matthew; Amsellem, Ziva; Sicard, Adrien; Czerednik, Anna; Angenent, Gerco; Grierson, Donald; May, Sean; Seymour, Graham; Eshed, Yuval; Lemaire-Chamley, Martine; Rothan, Christophe; Hilson, Pierre

    2009-12-01

    As a genetic platform, tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) benefits from rich germplasm collections and ease of cultivation and transformation that enable the analysis of biological processes impossible to investigate in other model species. To facilitate the assembly of an open genetic toolbox designed to study Solanaceae, we initiated a joint collection of publicly available gene manipulation tools. We focused on the characterization of promoters expressed at defined time windows during fruit development, for the regulated expression or silencing of genes of interest. Five promoter sequences were captured as entry clones compatible with the versatile MultiSite Gateway format: PPC2, PG, TPRP, and IMA from tomato and CRC from Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana). Corresponding transcriptional fusions were made with the GUS gene, a nuclear-localized GUS-GFP reporter, and the chimeric LhG4 transcription factor. The activity of the promoters during fruit development and in fruit tissues was confirmed in transgenic tomato lines. Novel Gateway destination vectors were generated for the transcription of artificial microRNA (amiRNA) precursors and hairpin RNAs under the control of these promoters, with schemes only involving Gateway BP and LR Clonase reactions. Efficient silencing of the endogenous phytoene desaturase gene was demonstrated in transgenic tomato lines producing a matching amiRNA under the cauliflower mosaic virus 35S or PPC2 promoter. Lastly, taking advantage of the pOP/LhG4 two-component system, we found that well-characterized flower-specific Arabidopsis promoters drive the expression of reporters in patterns generally compatible with heterologous expression. Tomato lines and plasmids will be distributed through a new Nottingham Arabidopsis Stock Centre service unit dedicated to Solanaceae resources.

  3. Episcopic 3D Imaging Methods: Tools for Researching Gene Function

    PubMed Central

    Weninger, Wolfgang J; Geyer, Stefan H

    2008-01-01

    This work aims at describing episcopic 3D imaging methods and at discussing how these methods can contribute to researching the genetic mechanisms driving embryogenesis and tissue remodelling, and the genesis of pathologies. Several episcopic 3D imaging methods exist. The most advanced are capable of generating high-resolution volume data (voxel sizes from 0.5x0.5x1 µm upwards) of small to large embryos of model organisms and tissue samples. Beside anatomy and tissue architecture, gene expression and gene product patterns can be three dimensionally analyzed in their precise anatomical and histological context with the aid of whole mount in situ hybridization or whole mount immunohistochemical staining techniques. Episcopic 3D imaging techniques were and are employed for analyzing the precise morphological phenotype of experimentally malformed, randomly produced, or genetically engineered embryos of biomedical model organisms. It has been shown that episcopic 3D imaging also fits for describing the spatial distribution of genes and gene products during embryogenesis, and that it can be used for analyzing tissue samples of adult model animals and humans. The latter offers the possibility to use episcopic 3D imaging techniques for researching the causality and treatment of pathologies or for staging cancer. Such applications, however, are not yet routine and currently only preliminary results are available. We conclude that, although episcopic 3D imaging is in its very beginnings, it represents an upcoming methodology, which in short terms will become an indispensable tool for researching the genetic regulation of embryo development as well as the genesis of malformations and diseases. PMID:19452045

  4. Robust Retention and Transfer of Tool Construction Techniques in Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes)

    PubMed Central

    Vale, Gill L.; Flynn, Emma G.; Pender, Lydia; Price, Elizabeth; Whiten, Andrew; Lambeth, Susan P.; Schapiro, Steven J.; Kendal, Rachel L.

    2016-01-01

    Long-term memory can be critical to a species’ survival in environments with seasonal and even longer-term cycles of resource availability. The present, longitudinal study investigated whether complex tool behaviors used to gain an out-of-reach reward, following a hiatus of about 3 years and 7 months since initial experiences with a tool use task, were retained and subsequently executed more quickly by experienced than by naïve chimpanzees. Ten of the 11 retested chimpanzees displayed impressive long-term procedural memory, creating elongated tools using the same methods employed years previously, either combining 2 tools or extending a single tool. The complex tool behaviors were also transferred to a different task context, showing behavioral flexibility. This represents some of the first evidence for appreciable long-term procedural memory, and improvements in the utility of complex tool manufacture in chimpanzees. Such long-term procedural memory and behavioral flexibility have important implications for the longevity and transmission of behavioral traditions. PMID:26881941

  5. Gene-transfer study approval awaits more data

    SciTech Connect

    Marwick, C.

    1988-11-18

    Approval of the gene-transfer study in cancer patients has been delayed. The proposal was recommended for approval by a National Institutes of Health (NIH) advisory committee, but has been put on hold by James B. Wyngaarden, MD, NIH director, pending submission in writing of further information. Some of this information, now forthcoming, had been withheld because data on preliminary studies had been submitted to peer-reviewed journals. The study involves placing the gene for neomycin-resistance to tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes as a marker. When these cells are injected into the patient, the presence of the marker should enable their fate to be studied over a prolonged period and an improved antitumor regimen could result. The use of tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes as immunotherapy has been studied for two years at the NIH's National Cancer Institute. The patients' tumors are removed and the tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes are cultivated to obtain several billion cells. These cells are then injected back into the patient. Early clinical experience has shown a substantial decease in tumor size in some patients, but not in all, an no one knows why.

  6. The recent transfer of a homing endonuclease gene

    PubMed Central

    Haugen, Peik; Wikmark, Odd-Gunnar; Vader, Anna; Coucheron, Dag H.; Sjøttem, Eva; Johansen, Steinar D.

    2005-01-01

    The myxomycete Didymium iridis (isolate Panama 2) contains a mobile group I intron named Dir.S956-1 after position 956 in the nuclear small subunit (SSU) rRNA gene. The intron is efficiently spread through homing by the intron-encoded homing endonuclease I-DirI. Homing endonuclease genes (HEGs) usually spread with their associated introns as a unit, but infrequently also spread independent of introns (or inteins). Clear examples of HEG mobility are however sparse. Here, we provide evidence for the transfer of a HEG into a group I intron named Dir.S956-2 that is inserted into the SSU rDNA of the Costa Rica 8 isolate of D.iridis. Similarities between intron sequences that flank the HEG and rDNA sequences that flank the intron (the homing endonuclease recognition sequence) suggest that the HEG invaded the intron during the recent evolution in a homing-like event. Dir.S956-2 is inserted into the same SSU site as Dir.S956-1. Remarkably, the two group I introns encode distantly related splicing ribozymes with phylogenetically related HEGs inserted on the opposite strands of different peripheral loop regions. The HEGs are both interrupted by small spliceosomal introns that must be removed during RNA maturation. PMID:15891115

  7. Passive Immunization against HIV/AIDS by Antibody Gene Transfer

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Lili; Wang, Pin

    2014-01-01

    Despite tremendous efforts over the course of many years, the quest for an effective HIV vaccine by the classical method of active immunization remains largely elusive. However, two recent studies in mice and macaques have now demonstrated a new strategy designated as Vectored ImmunoProphylaxis (VIP), which involves passive immunization by viral vector-mediated delivery of genes encoding broadly neutralizing antibodies (bnAbs) for in vivo expression. Robust protection against virus infection was observed in preclinical settings when animals were given VIP to express monoclonal neutralizing antibodies. This unorthodox approach raises new promise for combating the ongoing global HIV pandemic. In this article, we survey the status of antibody gene transfer, review the revolutionary progress on isolation of extremely bnAbs, detail VIP experiments against HIV and its related virus conduced in humanized mice and macaque monkeys, and discuss the pros and cons of VIP and its opportunities and challenges towards clinical applications to control HIV/AIDS endemics. PMID:24473340

  8. Therapeutic misconception in early phase gene transfer trials.

    PubMed

    Henderson, Gail E; Easter, Michele M; Zimmer, Catherine; King, Nancy M P; Davis, Arlene M; Rothschild, Barbra Bluestone; Churchill, Larry R; Wilfond, Benjamin S; Nelson, Daniel K

    2006-01-01

    Many subjects in early phase clinical trials expect to benefit in some way from the research intervention. It is understandable that people hope for improvement in their condition, no matter what the evidence. Yet unreasonable expectation of medical benefit may reflect problems with informed consent: Investigators may not disclose clearly that direct medical benefit from an early phase experimental intervention is unlikely or impossible, or subjects may not appreciate the differences between treatment and research. This paper presents findings from recent interviews with researchers and subjects and analysis of consent forms in early phase gene transfer research, a cutting-edge technology often called 'gene therapy'. We use three variables to construct a composite measure of therapeutic misconception TM, tapping misconceptions about the purposes of early phase research and the potential for direct medical benefit in these trials. Our multivariate model demonstrates the importance of both subject- and study-level factors as predictors of this TM index: education, disease type, and communication by study personnel about the likelihood of benefit. We hope that this work will deepen the discussion of how to define and measure TM, and refine the specification of factors that are related to subjects' TM.

  9. Tools for Atmospheric Radiative Transfer: Streamer and FluxNet. Revised

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Key, Jeffrey R.; Schweiger, Axel J.

    1998-01-01

    Two tools for the solution of radiative transfer problems are presented. Streamer is a highly flexible medium spectral resolution radiative transfer model based on the plane-parallel theory of radiative transfer. Capable of computing either fluxes or radiances, it is suitable for studying radiative processes at the surface or within the atmosphere and for the development of remote-sensing algorithms. FluxNet is a fast neural network-based implementation of Streamer for computing surface fluxes. It allows for a sophisticated treatment of radiative processes in the analysis of large data sets and potential integration into geophysical models where computational efficiency is an issue. Documentation and tools for the development of alternative versions of Fluxnet are available. Collectively, Streamer and FluxNet solve a wide variety of problems related to radiative transfer: Streamer provides the detail and sophistication needed to perform basic research on most aspects of complex radiative processes while the efficiency and simplicity of FluxNet make it ideal for operational use.

  10. Evaluation of biolistic gene transfer methods in vivo using non-invasive bioluminescent imaging techniques

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Gene therapy continues to hold great potential for treating many different types of disease and dysfunction. Safe and efficient techniques for gene transfer and expression in vivo are needed to enable gene therapeutic strategies to be effective in patients. Currently, the most commonly used methods employ replication-defective viral vectors for gene transfer, while physical gene transfer methods such as biolistic-mediated ("gene-gun") delivery to target tissues have not been as extensively explored. In the present study, we evaluated the efficacy of biolistic gene transfer techniques in vivo using non-invasive bioluminescent imaging (BLI) methods. Results Plasmid DNA carrying the firefly luciferase (LUC) reporter gene under the control of the human Cytomegalovirus (CMV) promoter/enhancer was transfected into mouse skin and liver using biolistic methods. The plasmids were coupled to gold microspheres (1 μm diameter) using different DNA Loading Ratios (DLRs), and "shot" into target tissues using a helium-driven gene gun. The optimal DLR was found to be in the range of 4-10. Bioluminescence was measured using an In Vivo Imaging System (IVIS-50) at various time-points following transfer. Biolistic gene transfer to mouse skin produced peak reporter gene expression one day after transfer. Expression remained detectable through four days, but declined to undetectable levels by six days following gene transfer. Maximum depth of tissue penetration following biolistic transfer to abdominal skin was 200-300 μm. Similarly, biolistic gene transfer to mouse liver in vivo also produced peak early expression followed by a decline over time. In contrast to skin, however, liver expression of the reporter gene was relatively stable 4-8 days post-biolistic gene transfer, and remained detectable for nearly two weeks. Conclusions The use of bioluminescence imaging techniques enabled efficient evaluation of reporter gene expression in vivo. Our results demonstrate that

  11. Frequent, independent transfers of a catabolic gene from bacteria to contrasted filamentous eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Bruto, Maxime; Prigent-Combaret, Claire; Luis, Patricia; Moënne-Loccoz, Yvan; Muller, Daniel

    2014-01-01

    Even genetically distant prokaryotes can exchange genes between them, and these horizontal gene transfer events play a central role in adaptation and evolution. While this was long thought to be restricted to prokaryotes, certain eukaryotes have acquired genes of bacterial origin. However, gene acquisitions in eukaryotes are thought to be much less important in magnitude than in prokaryotes. Here, we describe the complex evolutionary history of a bacterial catabolic gene that has been transferred repeatedly from different bacterial phyla to stramenopiles and fungi. Indeed, phylogenomic analysis pointed to multiple acquisitions of the gene in these filamentous eukaryotes—as many as 15 different events for 65 microeukaryotes. Furthermore, once transferred, this gene acquired introns and was found expressed in mRNA databases for most recipients. Our results show that effective inter-domain transfers and subsequent adaptation of a prokaryotic gene in eukaryotic cells can happen at an unprecedented magnitude. PMID:24990676

  12. Genome-scale phylogenetic analysis finds extensive gene transfer among fungi

    PubMed Central

    Szöllősi, Gergely J.; Davín, Adrián Arellano; Tannier, Eric; Daubin, Vincent; Boussau, Bastien

    2015-01-01

    Although the role of lateral gene transfer is well recognized in the evolution of bacteria, it is generally assumed that it has had less influence among eukaryotes. To explore this hypothesis, we compare the dynamics of genome evolution in two groups of organisms: cyanobacteria and fungi. Ancestral genomes are inferred in both clades using two types of methods: first, Count, a gene tree unaware method that models gene duplications, gains and losses to explain the observed numbers of genes present in a genome; second, ALE, a more recent gene tree-aware method that reconciles gene trees with a species tree using a model of gene duplication, loss and transfer. We compare their merits and their ability to quantify the role of transfers, and assess the impact of taxonomic sampling on their inferences. We present what we believe is compelling evidence that gene transfer plays a significant role in the evolution of fungi. PMID:26323765

  13. Frequent, independent transfers of a catabolic gene from bacteria to contrasted filamentous eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Bruto, Maxime; Prigent-Combaret, Claire; Luis, Patricia; Moënne-Loccoz, Yvan; Muller, Daniel

    2014-08-22

    Even genetically distant prokaryotes can exchange genes between them, and these horizontal gene transfer events play a central role in adaptation and evolution. While this was long thought to be restricted to prokaryotes, certain eukaryotes have acquired genes of bacterial origin. However, gene acquisitions in eukaryotes are thought to be much less important in magnitude than in prokaryotes. Here, we describe the complex evolutionary history of a bacterial catabolic gene that has been transferred repeatedly from different bacterial phyla to stramenopiles and fungi. Indeed, phylogenomic analysis pointed to multiple acquisitions of the gene in these filamentous eukaryotes-as many as 15 different events for 65 microeukaryotes. Furthermore, once transferred, this gene acquired introns and was found expressed in mRNA databases for most recipients. Our results show that effective inter-domain transfers and subsequent adaptation of a prokaryotic gene in eukaryotic cells can happen at an unprecedented magnitude.

  14. Center for Fetal Monkey Gene Transfer for Heart, Lung, and Blood Diseases: An NHLBI Resource for the Gene Therapy Community

    PubMed Central

    Skarlatos, Sonia I.

    2012-01-01

    Abstract The goals of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) Center for Fetal Monkey Gene Transfer for Heart, Lung, and Blood Diseases are to conduct gene transfer studies in monkeys to evaluate safety and efficiency; and to provide NHLBI-supported investigators with expertise, resources, and services to actively pursue gene transfer approaches in monkeys in their research programs. NHLBI-supported projects span investigators throughout the United States and have addressed novel approaches to gene delivery; “proof-of-principle”; assessed whether findings in small-animal models could be demonstrated in a primate species; or were conducted to enable new grant or IND submissions. The Center for Fetal Monkey Gene Transfer for Heart, Lung, and Blood Diseases successfully aids the gene therapy community in addressing regulatory barriers, and serves as an effective vehicle for advancing the field. PMID:22974119

  15. Center for fetal monkey gene transfer for heart, lung, and blood diseases: an NHLBI resource for the gene therapy community.

    PubMed

    Tarantal, Alice F; Skarlatos, Sonia I

    2012-11-01

    The goals of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) Center for Fetal Monkey Gene Transfer for Heart, Lung, and Blood Diseases are to conduct gene transfer studies in monkeys to evaluate safety and efficiency; and to provide NHLBI-supported investigators with expertise, resources, and services to actively pursue gene transfer approaches in monkeys in their research programs. NHLBI-supported projects span investigators throughout the United States and have addressed novel approaches to gene delivery; "proof-of-principle"; assessed whether findings in small-animal models could be demonstrated in a primate species; or were conducted to enable new grant or IND submissions. The Center for Fetal Monkey Gene Transfer for Heart, Lung, and Blood Diseases successfully aids the gene therapy community in addressing regulatory barriers, and serves as an effective vehicle for advancing the field.

  16. [Gene transfer agent--a novel and widespread occurrence mechanism of gene exchange in ocean-a review].

    PubMed

    Cai, Haiyuan

    2012-01-01

    Gene Transfer Agent (GTA) particles are released by bacteria and resemble small, tailed bacteriophages. GTA particles contain small, random pieces of host DNA rather than GTA structural genes or a phage genome. Gene transfer mediated by GTA is efficient and species specific based on knowledge of currently best studied GTAs produced by 4 anaerobes. Genome sequencing projects have revealed a remarkable distribution of GTA gene clusters in the genomes of marine bacterioplankton, implying GTA may be an important mechanism for horizontal gene transfer in ocean. On basis of characterization of the 4 best studied GTAs, this review described GTAs released by numerically dominant marine bacteria, discussed their properties that were important for horizontal gene transfer in ocean, and gave future perspectives to advance GTA research.

  17. The elucidation of gene transferring mechanism by ultrasound-responsive unmodified and mannose-modified lipoplexes.

    PubMed

    Un, Keita; Kawakami, Shigeru; Yoshida, Mitsuru; Higuchi, Yuriko; Suzuki, Ryo; Maruyama, Kazuo; Yamashita, Fumiyoshi; Hashida, Mitsuru

    2011-07-01

    The development of gene transfection methods enhancing the level of gene expression under simple and low-toxic condition is required for gene therapy in clinical. Our group has developed the ultrasound (US)-mediated gene transfection method using Man-PEG(2000) bubble lipoplexes, which are US-responsive and mannose-modified gene carriers, and succeeded in obtaining the enhanced gene expression in mannose receptor-expressing cells selectively by the gene transfer using Man-PEG(2000) bubble lipoplexes with US exposure in vitro and in vivo. Here, we investigated pDNA transferring mechanism followed by US exposure to unmodified and Man-PEG(2000) bubble lipoplexes, in particular, focused on US exposure timing. Following investigation of intracellular transferring characteristics, a large amount of pDNA was transferred into the cytoplasm followed by US-mediated destruction of bubble lipoplexes in the gene transfer using both bubble lipoplexes with US exposure. Moreover, the effective gene expression was obtained without TNF-α production when US was exposed until 5 min after the addition of bubble lipoplexes. These findings suggest that the gene transfer using unmodified and Man-PEG(2000) bubble lipoplexes with US exposure enables to transfer pDNA into the cytoplasm, and optimized US exposure timing is important to achieve the high level of gene expression and the low level of pro-inflammatory cytokine production.

  18. GOPET: a tool for automated predictions of Gene Ontology terms.

    PubMed

    Vinayagam, Arunachalam; del Val, Coral; Schubert, Falk; Eils, Roland; Glatting, Karl-Heinz; Suhai, Sándor; König, Rainer

    2006-03-20

    Vast progress in sequencing projects has called for annotation on a large scale. A Number of methods have been developed to address this challenging task. These methods, however, either apply to specific subsets, or their predictions are not formalised, or they do not provide precise confidence values for their predictions. We recently established a learning system for automated annotation, trained with a broad variety of different organisms to predict the standardised annotation terms from Gene Ontology (GO). Now, this method has been made available to the public via our web-service GOPET (Gene Ontology term Prediction and Evaluation Tool). It supplies annotation for sequences of any organism. For each predicted term an appropriate confidence value is provided. The basic method had been developed for predicting molecular function GO-terms. It is now expanded to predict biological process terms. This web service is available via http://genius.embnet.dkfz-heidelberg.de/menu/biounit/open-husar Our web service gives experimental researchers as well as the bioinformatics community a valuable sequence annotation device. Additionally, GOPET also provides less significant annotation data which may serve as an extended discovery platform for the user.

  19. Deduction of probable events of lateral gene transfer through comparison of phylogenetic trees by recursive consolidation and rearrangement.

    PubMed

    MacLeod, Dave; Charlebois, Robert L; Doolittle, Ford; Bapteste, Eric

    2005-04-08

    When organismal phylogenies based on sequences of single marker genes are poorly resolved, a logical approach is to add more markers, on the assumption that weak but congruent phylogenetic signal will be reinforced in such multigene trees. Such approaches are valid only when the several markers indeed have identical phylogenies, an issue which many multigene methods (such as the use of concatenated gene sequences or the assembly of supertrees) do not directly address. Indeed, even when the true history is a mixture of vertical descent for some genes and lateral gene transfer (LGT) for others, such methods produce unique topologies. We have developed software that aims to extract evidence for vertical and lateral inheritance from a set of gene trees compared against an arbitrary reference tree. This evidence is then displayed as a synthesis showing support over the tree for vertical inheritance, overlaid with explicit lateral gene transfer (LGT) events inferred to have occurred over the history of the tree. Like splits-tree methods, one can thus identify nodes at which conflict occurs. Additionally one can make reasonable inferences about vertical and lateral signal, assigning putative donors and recipients. A tool such as ours can serve to explore the reticulated dimensionality of molecular evolution, by dissecting vertical and lateral inheritance at high resolution. By this, we mean that individual nodes can be examined not only for congruence, but also for coherence in light of LGT. We assert that our tools will facilitate the comparison of phylogenetic trees, and the interpretation of conflicting data.

  20. Transfer of physical understanding in a non-tool-using parrot.

    PubMed

    van Horik, Jayden O; Emery, Nathan J

    2016-11-01

    Physical cognition has generally been assessed in tool-using species that possess a relatively large brain size, such as corvids and apes. Parrots, like corvids and apes, also have large relative brain sizes, yet although parrots rarely use tools in the wild, growing evidence suggests comparable performances on physical cognition tasks. It is, however, unclear whether success on such tasks is facilitated by previous experience and training procedures. We therefore investigated physical comprehension of object relationships in two non-tool-using species of captive neotropical parrots on a new means-end paradigm, the Trap-Gaps task, using unfamiliar materials and modified training procedures that precluded procedural cues. Red-shouldered macaws (Diopsittaca nobilis) and black-headed caiques (Pionites melanocephala) were presented with an initial task that required them to discriminate between pulling food trays through gaps while attending to the respective width of the gaps and size of the trays. Subjects were then presented with a novel, but functionally equivalent, transfer task. Six of eight birds solved the initial task through trial-and-error learning. Four of these six birds solved the transfer task, with one caique demonstrating spontaneous comprehension. These findings suggest that non-tool-using parrots may possess capacities for sophisticated physical cognition by generalising previously learned rules across novel problems.

  1. Horizontal gene transfer of chlamydial-like tRNA genes into early vascular plant mitochondria.

    PubMed

    Knie, Nils; Polsakiewicz, Monika; Knoop, Volker

    2015-03-01

    Mitochondrial genomes of lycophytes are surprisingly diverse, including strikingly different transfer RNA (tRNA) gene complements: No mitochondrial tRNA genes are present in the spikemoss Selaginella moellendorffii, whereas 26 tRNAs are encoded in the chondrome of the clubmoss Huperzia squarrosa. Reinvestigating the latter we found that trnL(gag) and trnS(gga) had never before been identified in any other land plant mitochondrial DNA. Sensitive sequence comparisons showed these two tRNAs as well as trnN(guu) and trnS(gcu) to be very similar to their respective counterparts in chlamydial bacteria. We identified homologs of these chlamydial-type tRNAs also in other lycophyte, fern, and gymnosperm DNAs, suggesting horizontal gene transfer (HGT) into mitochondria in the early vascular plant stem lineages. These findings extend plant mitochondrial HGT to affect individual tRNA genes, to include bacterial donors, and suggest that Chlamydiae on top of their recently proposed key role in primary chloroplast establishment may also have participated in early tracheophyte genome evolution.

  2. Elements of style: consent form language and the therapeutic misconception in phase 1 gene transfer trials.

    PubMed

    Kimmelman, Jonathan; Levenstadt, Aaron

    2005-04-01

    The therapeutic misconception arises wherever human subjects misinterpret the primary purpose of a clinical trial as therapeutic. Such misconceptions are particularly prevalent in trials involving severely ill subjects or novel and well-publicized investigational agents. In order to identify possible sources of the therapeutic misconception in gene transfer trials, 286 phase 1 human gene transfer consent documents were analyzed for their description of purpose, alternatives, and their use of the term gene transfer. We report that 20% of trials fail to explain their purpose as safety and dosage, only 41% of oncology trials identify comfort care as an alternative to participation, and that the term gene therapy is used with twice the frequency of the term gene transfer. Trends and coherence in consent form language were analyzed as well. Our results indicate that consent forms used in gene transfer phase 1 trials often contain language that promotes, or does little to deter, therapeutic misconceptions.

  3. Real-time in vivo bioluminescence imaging of lentiviral vector-mediated gene transfer in mouse testis.

    PubMed

    Kim, T S; Choi, H S; Ryu, B Y; Gang, G T; Kim, S U; Koo, D B; Kim, J M; Han, J H; Park, C K; Her, S; Lee, D S

    2010-01-01

    Although much research has focused on transferring exogenous genes into living mouse testis to investigate specific gene functions in spermatogenic, Sertoli, and Leydig cells, relatively little is known regarding real-time gene expression in vivo. In this study, we constructed a bicistronic lentiviral vector (LV) encoding firefly luciferase and enhanced green fluorescence protein (EGFP); this was a highly efficient in vivo gene transfer tool. After microinjecting LV into the seminiferous tubules the ICR mouse testis, we detected luciferase and EGFP expression in vivo and ex vivo in the injected tubules using bioluminescence imaging (BLI) with the IVIS-200 system and fibered confocal fluorescence microscopy (CellViZio), respectively. In addition, with an in vivo BLI system, luciferase expression in the testis was detected for approximately 3 mo. Furthermore, EGFP expression in seminiferous tubules was confirmed in excised testes via three-dimensional fluorescent imaging with a confocal laser-scanning microscope. With immunostaining, EGFP expression was confirmed in several male germ cell types in the seminiferous tubules, as well as in Sertoli and Leydig cells. In conclusion, we demonstrated that real-time in vivo BLI analysis can be used to noninvasively (in vivo) monitor long-term luciferase expression in mouse testis, and we verified that EGFP expression is localized in seminiferous tubules after bicistronic LV-mediated gene transfer into mouse testes. Furthermore, we anticipate the future use of in vivo BLI technology for real-time study of specific genes involved in spermatogenesis.

  4. IL-7 surface-engineered lentiviral vectors promote survival and efficient gene transfer in resting primary T lymphocytes.

    PubMed

    Verhoeyen, Els; Dardalhon, Valerie; Ducrey-Rundquist, Odile; Trono, Didier; Taylor, Naomi; Cosset, François-Loïc

    2003-03-15

    Important gene therapy target cells such as resting human T cells are refractory to transduction with lentiviral vectors. Completion of reverse transcription, nuclear import, and subsequent integration of the lentiviral genome occur in these cells only if they have been activated. In T-cell-based gene therapy trials performed to date, cells have been activated via their cognate antigen receptor. To couple activation with gene transfer, we previously generated lentiviral vectors displaying an anti-CD3 scFv fragment that allowed up to 48% transduction of freshly isolated T cells. However, transduction of highly purified resting T cells with these anti-CD3-displaying lentiviral vectors was inefficient and shifted the T cells from the naive to the memory phenotype. Here, we describe interleukin-7 (IL-7)-displaying HIV-1-derived vectors. Like recombinant IL-7, these modified particles could promote the survival of primary T cells placed in culture without inducing a naive-to-memory phenotypic switch. Furthermore, a single exposure to the IL-7-displaying vectors resulted in efficient gene transfer in both resting memory adult T cells and naive cord blood T cells. With adult naive T cells, preactivation with recombinant IL-7 was necessary for efficient gene transfer. Altogether, these results suggest that IL-7-displaying vectors could constitute interesting tools for T-cell-targeted gene therapy.

  5. Phylogenetic detection of horizontal gene transfer during the step-wise genesis of Mycobacterium tuberculosis

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    Background In the past decade, the availability of complete genome sequence data has greatly facilitated comparative genomic research aimed at addressing genetic variability within species. More recently, analysis across species has become feasible, especially in genera where genome sequencing projects of multiple species have been initiated. To understand the genesis of the pathogen Mycobacterium tuberculosis within a genus where the majority of species are harmless environmental organisms, we have used genome sequence data from 16 mycobacteria to look for evidence of horizontal gene transfer (HGT) associated with the emergence of pathogenesis. First, using multi-locus sequence analysis (MLSA) of 20 housekeeping genes across these species, we derived a phylogeny that serves as the basis for HGT assignments. Next, we performed alignment searches for the 3989 proteins of M. tuberculosis H37Rv against 15 other mycobacterial genomes, generating a matrix of 59835 comparisons, to look for genetic elements that were uniquely found in M. tuberculosis and closely-related pathogenic mycobacteria. To assign when foreign genes were likely acquired, we designed a bioinformatic program called mycoHIT (mycobacterial homologue investigation tool) to analyze these data in conjunction with the MLSA-based phylogeny. Results The bioinformatic screen predicted that 137 genes had been acquired by HGT at different phylogenetic strata; these included genes coding for metabolic functions and modification of mycobacterial lipids. For the majority of these genes, corroborating evidence of HGT was obtained, such as presence of phage or plasmid, and an aberrant GC%. Conclusion M. tuberculosis emerged through vertical inheritance along with the step-wise addition of genes acquired via HGT events, a process that may more generally describe the evolution of other pathogens. PMID:19664275

  6. Phylogenetic detection of horizontal gene transfer during the step-wise genesis of Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

    PubMed

    Veyrier, Frédéric; Pletzer, Daniel; Turenne, Christine; Behr, Marcel A

    2009-08-10

    In the past decade, the availability of complete genome sequence data has greatly facilitated comparative genomic research aimed at addressing genetic variability within species. More recently, analysis across species has become feasible, especially in genera where genome sequencing projects of multiple species have been initiated. To understand the genesis of the pathogen Mycobacterium tuberculosis within a genus where the majority of species are harmless environmental organisms, we have used genome sequence data from 16 mycobacteria to look for evidence of horizontal gene transfer (HGT) associated with the emergence of pathogenesis. First, using multi-locus sequence analysis (MLSA) of 20 housekeeping genes across these species, we derived a phylogeny that serves as the basis for HGT assignments. Next, we performed alignment searches for the 3989 proteins of M. tuberculosis H37Rv against 15 other mycobacterial genomes, generating a matrix of 59835 comparisons, to look for genetic elements that were uniquely found in M. tuberculosis and closely-related pathogenic mycobacteria. To assign when foreign genes were likely acquired, we designed a bioinformatic program called mycoHIT (mycobacterial homologue investigation tool) to analyze these data in conjunction with the MLSA-based phylogeny. The bioinformatic screen predicted that 137 genes had been acquired by HGT at different phylogenetic strata; these included genes coding for metabolic functions and modification of mycobacterial lipids. For the majority of these genes, corroborating evidence of HGT was obtained, such as presence of phage or plasmid, and an aberrant GC%. M. tuberculosis emerged through vertical inheritance along with the step-wise addition of genes acquired via HGT events, a process that may more generally describe the evolution of other pathogens.

  7. Horizontal gene transfer and gene dosage drives adaptation to wood colonization in a tree pathogen

    PubMed Central

    Dhillon, Braham; Feau, Nicolas; Aerts, Andrea L.; Beauseigle, Stéphanie; Bernier, Louis; Copeland, Alex; Foster, Adam; Gill, Navdeep; Henrissat, Bernard; Herath, Padmini; LaButti, Kurt M.; Levasseur, Anthony; Lindquist, Erika A.; Majoor, Eline; Ohm, Robin A.; Pangilinan, Jasmyn L.; Pribowo, Amadeus; Saddler, John N.; Sakalidis, Monique L.; de Vries, Ronald P.; Grigoriev, Igor V.; Goodwin, Stephen B.; Tanguay, Philippe; Hamelin, Richard C.

    2015-01-01

    Some of the most damaging tree pathogens can attack woody stems, causing lesions (cankers) that may be lethal. To identify the genomic determinants of wood colonization leading to canker formation, we sequenced the genomes of the poplar canker pathogen, Mycosphaerella populorum, and the closely related poplar leaf pathogen, M. populicola. A secondary metabolite cluster unique to M. populorum is fully activated following induction by poplar wood and leaves. In addition, genes encoding hemicellulose-degrading enzymes, peptidases, and metabolite transporters were more abundant and were up-regulated in M. populorum growing on poplar wood-chip medium compared with M. populicola. The secondary gene cluster and several of the carbohydrate degradation genes have the signature of horizontal transfer from ascomycete fungi associated with wood decay and from prokaryotes. Acquisition and maintenance of the gene battery necessary for growth in woody tissues and gene dosage resulting in gene expression reconfiguration appear to be responsible for the adaptation of M. populorum to infect, colonize, and cause mortality on poplar woody stems. PMID:25733908

  8. Horizontal gene transfer and gene dosage drives adaptation to wood colonization in a tree pathogen.

    PubMed

    Dhillon, Braham; Feau, Nicolas; Aerts, Andrea L; Beauseigle, Stéphanie; Bernier, Louis; Copeland, Alex; Foster, Adam; Gill, Navdeep; Henrissat, Bernard; Herath, Padmini; LaButti, Kurt M; Levasseur, Anthony; Lindquist, Erika A; Majoor, Eline; Ohm, Robin A; Pangilinan, Jasmyn L; Pribowo, Amadeus; Saddler, John N; Sakalidis, Monique L; de Vries, Ronald P; Grigoriev, Igor V; Goodwin, Stephen B; Tanguay, Philippe; Hamelin, Richard C

    2015-03-17

    Some of the most damaging tree pathogens can attack woody stems, causing lesions (cankers) that may be lethal. To identify the genomic determinants of wood colonization leading to canker formation, we sequenced the genomes of the poplar canker pathogen, Mycosphaerella populorum, and the closely related poplar leaf pathogen, M. populicola. A secondary metabolite cluster unique to M. populorum is fully activated following induction by poplar wood and leaves. In addition, genes encoding hemicellulose-degrading enzymes, peptidases, and metabolite transporters were more abundant and were up-regulated in M. populorum growing on poplar wood-chip medium compared with M. populicola. The secondary gene cluster and several of the carbohydrate degradation genes have the signature of horizontal transfer from ascomycete fungi associated with wood decay and from prokaryotes. Acquisition and maintenance of the gene battery necessary for growth in woody tissues and gene dosage resulting in gene expression reconfiguration appear to be responsible for the adaptation of M. populorum to infect, colonize, and cause mortality on poplar woody stems.

  9. A novel roseobacter phage possesses features of podoviruses, siphoviruses, prophages and gene transfer agents

    PubMed Central

    Zhan, Yuanchao; Huang, Sijun; Voget, Sonja; Simon, Meinhard; Chen, Feng

    2016-01-01

    Bacteria in the Roseobacter lineage have been studied extensively due to their significant biogeochemical roles in the marine ecosystem. However, our knowledge on bacteriophage which infects the Roseobacter clade is still very limited. Here, we report a new bacteriophage, phage DSS3Φ8, which infects marine roseobacter Ruegeria pomeroyi DSS-3. DSS3Φ8 is a lytic siphovirus. Genomic analysis showed that DSS3Φ8 is most closely related to a group of siphoviruses, CbK-like phages, which infect freshwater bacterium Caulobacter crescentus. DSS3Φ8 contains a smaller capsid and has a reduced genome size (146 kb) compared to the CbK-like phages (205–279 kb). DSS3Φ8 contains the DNA polymerase gene which is closely related to T7-like podoviruses. DSS3Φ8 also contains the integrase and repressor genes, indicating its potential to involve in lysogenic cycle. In addition, four GTA (gene transfer agent) genes were identified in the DSS3Φ8 genome. Genomic analysis suggests that DSS3Φ8 is a highly mosaic phage that inherits the genetic features from siphoviruses, podoviruses, prophages and GTAs. This is the first report of CbK-like phages infecting marine bacteria. We believe phage isolation is still a powerful tool that can lead to discovery of new phages and help interpret the overwhelming unknown sequences in the viral metagenomics. PMID:27460944

  10. A novel roseobacter phage possesses features of podoviruses, siphoviruses, prophages and gene transfer agents

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhan, Yuanchao; Huang, Sijun; Voget, Sonja; Simon, Meinhard; Chen, Feng

    2016-07-01

    Bacteria in the Roseobacter lineage have been studied extensively due to their significant biogeochemical roles in the marine ecosystem. However, our knowledge on bacteriophage which infects the Roseobacter clade is still very limited. Here, we report a new bacteriophage, phage DSS3Φ8, which infects marine roseobacter Ruegeria pomeroyi DSS-3. DSS3Φ8 is a lytic siphovirus. Genomic analysis showed that DSS3Φ8 is most closely related to a group of siphoviruses, CbK-like phages, which infect freshwater bacterium Caulobacter crescentus. DSS3Φ8 contains a smaller capsid and has a reduced genome size (146 kb) compared to the CbK-like phages (205–279 kb). DSS3Φ8 contains the DNA polymerase gene which is closely related to T7-like podoviruses. DSS3Φ8 also contains the integrase and repressor genes, indicating its potential to involve in lysogenic cycle. In addition, four GTA (gene transfer agent) genes were identified in the DSS3Φ8 genome. Genomic analysis suggests that DSS3Φ8 is a highly mosaic phage that inherits the genetic features from siphoviruses, podoviruses, prophages and GTAs. This is the first report of CbK-like phages infecting marine bacteria. We believe phage isolation is still a powerful tool that can lead to discovery of new phages and help interpret the overwhelming unknown sequences in the viral metagenomics.

  11. An alternative approach for gene transfer in trees using wild-type Agrobacterium strains.

    PubMed

    Brasileiro, A C; Leplé, J C; Muzzin, J; Ounnoughi, D; Michel, M F; Jouanin, L

    1991-09-01

    Micropropagated shoots of three forest tree species, poplar (Populus tremula x P. alba), wild cherry (Prunus avium L.) and walnut (Juglans nigra x J. regia), were inoculated each with six different wild-type Agrobacterium strains. Poplar and wild cherry developed tumors that grew hormone-independently, whereas on walnut, gall formation was weak. On poplar and wild cherry, tumors induced by nopaline strains developed spontaneously shoots that had a normal phenotype and did not carry oncogenic T-DNA. From these observations, we have established a co-inoculation method to transform plants, using poplar as an experimental model. The method is based on inoculation of stem internodes with an Agrobacterium suspension containing both an oncogenic strain that induces shoot differentiation and a disarmed strain that provides the suitable genes in a binary vector. We used the vector pBI121 carrying neo (kanamycin resistance) and uidA (beta-glucuronidase) genes to facilitate early selection and screening. Poplar plants derived from kanamycin-resistant shoots that did not carry oncogenic T-DNA, were shown to contain and to express neo and uidA genes. These results suggest that wild-type Agrobacterium strains that induce shoot formation directly from tumors can be used as a general tool for gene transfer, avoiding difficult regeneration procedures.

  12. Transduction-like gene transfer in the methanogen Methanococcus voltae

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bertani, G.

    1999-01-01

    Strain PS of Methanococcus voltae (a methanogenic, anaerobic archaebacterium) was shown to generate spontaneously 4.4-kbp chromosomal DNA fragments that are fully protected from DNase and that, upon contact with a cell, transform it genetically. This activity, here called VTA (voltae transfer agent), affects all markers tested: three different auxotrophies (histidine, purine, and cobalamin) and resistance to BES (2-bromoethanesulfonate, an inhibitor of methanogenesis). VTA was most effectively prepared by culture filtration. This process disrupted a fraction of the M. voltae cells (which have only an S-layer covering their cytoplasmic membrane). VTA was rapidly inactivated upon storage. VTA particles were present in cultures at concentrations of approximately two per cell. Gene transfer activity varied from a minimum of 2 x 10(-5) (BES resistance) to a maximum of 10(-3) (histidine independence) per donor cell. Very little VTA was found free in culture supernatants. The phenomenon is functionally similar to generalized transduction, but there is no evidence, for the time being, of intrinsically viral (i.e., containing a complete viral genome) particles. Consideration of VTA DNA size makes the existence of such viral particles unlikely. If they exist, they must be relatively few in number;perhaps they differ from VTA particles in size and other properties and thus escaped detection. Digestion of VTA DNA with the AluI restriction enzyme suggests that it is a random sample of the bacterial DNA, except for a 0.9-kbp sequence which is amplified relative to the rest of the bacterial chromosome. A VTA-sized DNA fraction was demonstrated in a few other isolates of M. voltae.

  13. Transduction-Like Gene Transfer in the Methanogen Methanococcus voltae

    PubMed Central

    Bertani, Giuseppe

    1999-01-01

    Strain PS of Methanococcus voltae (a methanogenic, anaerobic archaebacterium) was shown to generate spontaneously 4.4-kbp chromosomal DNA fragments that are fully protected from DNase and that, upon contact with a cell, transform it genetically. This activity, here called VTA (voltae transfer agent), affects all markers tested: three different auxotrophies (histidine, purine, and cobalamin) and resistance to BES (2-bromoethanesulfonate, an inhibitor of methanogenesis). VTA was most effectively prepared by culture filtration. This process disrupted a fraction of the M. voltae cells (which have only an S-layer covering their cytoplasmic membrane). VTA was rapidly inactivated upon storage. VTA particles were present in cultures at concentrations of approximately two per cell. Gene transfer activity varied from a minimum of 2 × 10−5 (BES resistance) to a maximum of 10−3 (histidine independence) per donor cell. Very little VTA was found free in culture supernatants. The phenomenon is functionally similar to generalized transduction, but there is no evidence, for the time being, of intrinsically viral (i.e., containing a complete viral genome) particles. Consideration of VTA DNA size makes the existence of such viral particles unlikely. If they exist, they must be relatively few in number;perhaps they differ from VTA particles in size and other properties and thus escaped detection. Digestion of VTA DNA with the AluI restriction enzyme suggests that it is a random sample of the bacterial DNA, except for a 0.9-kbp sequence which is amplified relative to the rest of the bacterial chromosome. A VTA-sized DNA fraction was demonstrated in a few other isolates of M. voltae. PMID:10321998

  14. Transduction-like gene transfer in the methanogen Methanococcus voltae

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bertani, G.

    1999-01-01

    Strain PS of Methanococcus voltae (a methanogenic, anaerobic archaebacterium) was shown to generate spontaneously 4.4-kbp chromosomal DNA fragments that are fully protected from DNase and that, upon contact with a cell, transform it genetically. This activity, here called VTA (voltae transfer agent), affects all markers tested: three different auxotrophies (histidine, purine, and cobalamin) and resistance to BES (2-bromoethanesulfonate, an inhibitor of methanogenesis). VTA was most effectively prepared by culture filtration. This process disrupted a fraction of the M. voltae cells (which have only an S-layer covering their cytoplasmic membrane). VTA was rapidly inactivated upon storage. VTA particles were present in cultures at concentrations of approximately two per cell. Gene transfer activity varied from a minimum of 2 x 10(-5) (BES resistance) to a maximum of 10(-3) (histidine independence) per donor cell. Very little VTA was found free in culture supernatants. The phenomenon is functionally similar to generalized transduction, but there is no evidence, for the time being, of intrinsically viral (i.e., containing a complete viral genome) particles. Consideration of VTA DNA size makes the existence of such viral particles unlikely. If they exist, they must be relatively few in number;perhaps they differ from VTA particles in size and other properties and thus escaped detection. Digestion of VTA DNA with the AluI restriction enzyme suggests that it is a random sample of the bacterial DNA, except for a 0.9-kbp sequence which is amplified relative to the rest of the bacterial chromosome. A VTA-sized DNA fraction was demonstrated in a few other isolates of M. voltae.

  15. Novel "Superspreader" Bacteriophages Promote Horizontal Gene Transfer by Transformation.

    PubMed

    Keen, Eric C; Bliskovsky, Valery V; Malagon, Francisco; Baker, James D; Prince, Jeffrey S; Klaus, James S; Adhya, Sankar L

    2017-01-17

    Bacteriophages infect an estimated 10(23) to 10(25) bacterial cells each second, many of which carry physiologically relevant plasmids (e.g., those encoding antibiotic resistance). However, even though phage-plasmid interactions occur on a massive scale and have potentially significant evolutionary, ecological, and biomedical implications, plasmid fate upon phage infection and lysis has not been investigated to date. Here we show that a subset of the natural lytic phage population, which we dub "superspreaders," releases substantial amounts of intact, transformable plasmid DNA upon lysis, thereby promoting horizontal gene transfer by transformation. Two novel Escherichia coli phage superspreaders, SUSP1 and SUSP2, liberated four evolutionarily distinct plasmids with equal efficiency, including two close relatives of prominent antibiotic resistance vectors in natural environments. SUSP2 also mediated the extensive lateral transfer of antibiotic resistance in unbiased communities of soil bacteria from Maryland and Wyoming. Furthermore, the addition of SUSP2 to cocultures of kanamycin-resistant E. coli and kanamycin-sensitive Bacillus sp. bacteria resulted in roughly 1,000-fold more kanamycin-resistant Bacillus sp. bacteria than arose in phage-free controls. Unlike many other lytic phages, neither SUSP1 nor SUSP2 encodes homologs to known hydrolytic endonucleases, suggesting a simple potential mechanism underlying the superspreading phenotype. Consistent with this model, the deletion of endonuclease IV and the nucleoid-disrupting protein ndd from coliphage T4, a phage known to extensively degrade chromosomal DNA, significantly increased its ability to promote plasmid transformation. Taken together, our results suggest that phage superspreaders may play key roles in microbial evolution and ecology but should be avoided in phage therapy and other medical applications.

  16. Parvalbumin gene transfer impairs skeletal muscle contractility in old mice.

    PubMed

    Murphy, Kate T; Ham, Daniel J; Church, Jarrod E; Naim, Timur; Trieu, Jennifer; Williams, David A; Lynch, Gordon S

    2012-08-01

    Sarcopenia is the progressive age-related loss of skeletal muscle mass associated with functional impairments that reduce mobility and quality of life. Overt muscle wasting with sarcopenia is usually preceded by a slowing of the rate of relaxation and a reduction in maximum force production. Parvalbumin (PV) is a cytosolic Ca(2+) buffer thought to facilitate relaxation in muscle. We tested the hypothesis that restoration of PV levels in muscles of old mice would increase the magnitude and hasten relaxation of submaximal and maximal force responses. The tibialis anterior (TA) muscles of young (6 month), adult (13 month), and old (26 month) C57BL/6 mice received electroporation-assisted gene transfer of plasmid encoding PV or empty plasmid (pcDNA3.1). Contractile properties of TA muscles were assessed in situ 14 days after transfer. In old mice, muscles with increased PV expression had a 40% slower rate of tetanic force development (p<0.01), and maximum twitch and tetanic force were 22% and 16% lower than control values, respectively (p<0.05). Muscles with increased PV expression from old mice had an 18% lower maximum specific (normalized) force than controls, and absolute force was `26% lower at higher stimulation frequencies (150-300 Hz, p<0.05). In contrast, there was no effect of increased PV expression on TA muscle contractile properties in young and adult mice. The impairments in skeletal muscle function in old mice argue against PV overexpression as a therapeutic strategy for ameliorating aspects of contractile dysfunction with sarcopenia and help clarify directions for therapeutic interventions for age-related changes in skeletal muscle structure and function.

  17. Parvalbumin Gene Transfer Impairs Skeletal Muscle Contractility in Old Mice

    PubMed Central

    Murphy, Kate T.; Ham, Daniel J.; Church, Jarrod E.; Naim, Timur; Trieu, Jennifer; Williams, David A.

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Sarcopenia is the progressive age-related loss of skeletal muscle mass associated with functional impairments that reduce mobility and quality of life. Overt muscle wasting with sarcopenia is usually preceded by a slowing of the rate of relaxation and a reduction in maximum force production. Parvalbumin (PV) is a cytosolic Ca2+ buffer thought to facilitate relaxation in muscle. We tested the hypothesis that restoration of PV levels in muscles of old mice would increase the magnitude and hasten relaxation of submaximal and maximal force responses. The tibialis anterior (TA) muscles of young (6 month), adult (13 month), and old (26 month) C57BL/6 mice received electroporation-assisted gene transfer of plasmid encoding PV or empty plasmid (pcDNA3.1). Contractile properties of TA muscles were assessed in situ 14 days after transfer. In old mice, muscles with increased PV expression had a 40% slower rate of tetanic force development (p<0.01), and maximum twitch and tetanic force were 22% and 16% lower than control values, respectively (p<0.05). Muscles with increased PV expression from old mice had an 18% lower maximum specific (normalized) force than controls, and absolute force was ∼26% lower at higher stimulation frequencies (150–300 Hz, p<0.05). In contrast, there was no effect of increased PV expression on TA muscle contractile properties in young and adult mice. The impairments in skeletal muscle function in old mice argue against PV overexpression as a therapeutic strategy for ameliorating aspects of contractile dysfunction with sarcopenia and help clarify directions for therapeutic interventions for age-related changes in skeletal muscle structure and function. PMID:22455364

  18. Multimodality Imaging of Gene Transfer with a Receptor-Based Reporter Gene

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Ron; Parry, Jesse J.; Akers, Walter J.; Berezin, Mikhail Y.; El Naqa, Issam M.; Achilefu, Samuel; Edwards, W. Barry; Rogers, Buck E.

    2010-01-01

    Gene therapy trials have traditionally used tumor and tissue biopsies for assessing the efficacy of gene transfer. Non-invasive imaging techniques offer a distinct advantage over tissue biopsies in that the magnitude and duration of gene transfer can be monitored repeatedly. Human somatostatin receptor subtype 2 (SSTR2) has been used for the nuclear imaging of gene transfer. To extend this concept, we have developed a somatostatin receptor–enhanced green fluorescent protein fusion construct (SSTR2-EGFP) for nuclear and fluorescent multimodality imaging. Methods An adenovirus containing SSTR2-EGFP (AdSSTR2-EGFP) was constructed and evaluated in vitro and in vivo. SCC-9 human squamous cell carcinoma cells were infected with AdEGFP, AdSSTR2, or AdSSTR2-EGFP for in vitro evaluation by saturation binding, internalization, and fluorescence spectroscopy assays. In vivo biodistribution and nano-SPECT imaging studies were conducted with mice bearing SCC-9 tumor xenografts directly injected with AdSSTR2-EGFP or AdSSTR2 to determine the tumor localization of 111In-diethylenetriaminepentaacetic acid (DTPA)-Tyr3-octreotate. Fluorescence imaging was conducted in vivo with mice receiving intratumoral injections of AdSSTR2, AdSSTR2-EGFP, or AdEGFP as well as ex vivo with tissues extracted from mice. Results The similarity between AdSSTR2-EGFP and wild-type AdSSTR2 was demonstrated in vitro by the saturation binding and internalization assays, and the fluorescence emission spectra of cells infected with AdSSTR2-EGFP was almost identical to the spectra of cells infected with wild-type AdEGFP. Biodistribution studies demonstrated that the tumor uptake of 111In-DTPA-Tyr3-octreotate was not significantly different (P > 0.05) when tumors (n = 5) were injected with AdSSTR2 or AdSSTR2-EGFP but was significantly greater than the uptake in control tumors. Fluorescence was observed in tumors injected with AdSSTR2-EGFP and AdEGFP in vivo and ex vivo but not in tumors injected with AdSSTR2

  19. [Effect of exogenic proteolytic enzymes on transfer of plasmid genes in mixed bacterial biofilms].

    PubMed

    Tets, G V; Artemenko, N K; Zaslavskaia, N V; Artemenko, K L; Knorring, G Iu; Tets, V V; Sternin, Iu I

    2009-01-01

    The effect of the enzyme complex from Vobenzin on transfer of plasmid genes in biofilms of gramnegative bacteria was studied. The extracellular matrix of the bacterial biofilms was shown to contain extracellular DNA carrying the antibiotic resistance markers. The action of the enzyme complex resulted in lower frequency of the antibiotic resistance genes transfer in mixed bacterial biofilms.

  20. Microbial Evolution Is in the Cards: Horizontal Gene Transfer in the Classroom

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kagle, Jeanne; Hay, Anthony G.

    2007-01-01

    Horizontal gene transfer, the exchange of genetic material between bacteria, is a potentially important factor in the degradation of synthetic compounds introduced to the environment and in the acquisition of other characteristics including antibiotic resistance. This game-based activity illustrates the role of horizontal gene transfer in the…

  1. Microbial Evolution Is in the Cards: Horizontal Gene Transfer in the Classroom

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kagle, Jeanne; Hay, Anthony G.

    2007-01-01

    Horizontal gene transfer, the exchange of genetic material between bacteria, is a potentially important factor in the degradation of synthetic compounds introduced to the environment and in the acquisition of other characteristics including antibiotic resistance. This game-based activity illustrates the role of horizontal gene transfer in the…

  2. Intramarrow cytokine gene transfer by adenoviral vectors in dogs.

    PubMed

    Foley, R; Ellis, R; Walker, I; Wan, Y; Carter, R; Boyle, M; Braciak, T; Addison, C; Graham, F; Gauldie, J

    1997-03-20

    Daily systemic administration of hematopoietic growth factors can be associated with dose-limiting systemic side effects. To overcome this, we have investigated hematopoietic cytokine gene transfer to the marrow cavity of dogs by direct intramarrow injection of adenoviral vectors. In marrow culture, replication-deficient (E1-deleted) adenoviral vectors were able to transduce marrow stromal cells, demonstrating 30-fold greater expression than from other marrow cell types. High-level (ng/ml) cytokine production from transduced stromal cells persisted for 14 days in culture. Because adenovectors could efficiently transduce marrow stromal cells in culture, we investigated if stromal cells could also be transduced in vivo following direct intramarrow vector injection. Adenovectors with genes for interleukin 6 (IL-6) and Lac Z (beta-galactosidase) were injected directly into the marrow cavity of dogs resulting in protein expression localized to within the treated marrow. To evaluate this approach further in dogs, we constructed a vector expressing biologically active canine granulocyte-macrophage colony stimulating factor (GM-CSF). 293 cells infected with ADGM-CSF demonstrated prevalent GM-CSF mRNA by Northern blot and 135 +/- 30 ng/ml of protein as measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). In vitro bioactivity of protein expressed was confirmed by canine GM colony-forming assay (CFU-GM). In vivo high-level protein production was noted in supernatants of marrow aspirates 72 hr following direct intramarrow administration of ADGM-CSF (baseline mean +/- SEM, 27 +/- 22 ng/ml, 72-hr sample 921 +/- 461 ng/ml). A localized myeloid expansion of marrow and significant peripheral leukocytosis (neutrophilia) were noted in all ADGM-CSF-treated dogs. Peripheral blood changes lasted for up to 3 weeks in dogs following single intramarrow injection. Thus, adenoviral cytokine expression from the marrow of a single large bone (ilium) led to compartmentalized expression of

  3. Increasing cholesterol synthesis in 7-dehydrosterol reductase (DHCR7) deficient mouse models through gene transfer

    PubMed Central

    Matabosch, Xavier; Ying, Lee; Serra, Montserrat; Wassif, Christopher A.; Porter, Forbes D.; Shackleton, Cedric; Watson, Gordon

    2010-01-01

    Smith-Lemli-Opitz syndrome (SLOS) is caused by deficiency in the terminal step of cholesterol biosynthesis: the conversion of 7-dehydrocholesterol (7DHC) to cholesterol (C), catalyzed by 7-dehydrocholesterol reductase (DHCR7). This disorder exhibits several phenotypic traits including dysmorphia and mental retardation with a broad range of severity. There are few proven treatment options. That most commonly used is a high cholesterol diet that seems to enhance the quality of life and improve behavioral characteristics of patients, although these positive effects are controversial. The goal of our study was to investigate the possibility of restoring DHCR7 activity by gene transfer. We constructed an adeno-associated virus (AAV) vector containing the DHCR7 gene. After we infused this vector into affected mice, the introduced DHCR7 gene could be identified in liver, mRNA was expressed and a functional enzyme was produced. Evidence of functionality came from the ability to partially normalize the serum ratio of 7DHC/C in treated animals, apparently by increasing cholesterol production with concomitant decrease in 7DHC precursor. By five weeks after treatment the mean ratio (for 7 animals) had fallen to 0.05 while the ratio for untreated littermate controls had risen to 0.14. This provides proof of principle that gene transfer can ameliorate the genetic defect causing SLOS and provides a new experimental tool for studying the pathogenesis of this disease. If effective in humans, it might also offer a possible alternative to exogenous cholesterol therapy. However, it would not offer a complete cure for the disorder as many of the negative implications of defective synthesis are already established during prenatal development. PMID:20800683

  4. Selfish Operons: Horizontal Transfer May Drive the Evolution of Gene Clusters

    PubMed Central

    Lawrence, J. G.; Roth, J. R.

    1996-01-01

    A model is presented whereby the formation of gene clusters in bacteria is mediated by transfer of DNA within and among taxa. Bacterial operons are typically composed of genes whose products contribute to a single function. If this function is subject to weak selection or to long periods with no selection, the contributing genes may accumulate mutations and be lost by genetic drift. From a cell's perspective, once several genes are lost, the function can be restored only if all missing genes were acquired simultaneously by lateral transfer. The probability of transfer of multiple genes increases when genes are physically proximate. From a gene's perspective, horizontal transfer provides a way to escape evolutionary loss by allowing colonization of organisms lacking the encoded functions. Since organisms bearing clustered genes are more likely to act as successful donors, clustered genes would spread among bacterial genomes. The physical proximity of genes may be considered a selfish property of the operon since it affects the probability of successful horizontal transfer but may provide no physiological benefit to the host. This process predicts a mosaic structure of modern genomes in which ancestral chromosomal material is interspersed with novel, horizontally transferred operons providing peripheral metabolic functions. PMID:8844169

  5. Targeted gene transfer of different genes to presynaptic and postsynaptic neocortical neurons connected by a glutamatergic synapse.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Guo-rong; Zhao, Hua; Cao, Haiyan; Li, Xu; Geller, Alfred I

    2012-09-14

    Genetic approaches to analyzing neuronal circuits and learning would benefit from a technology to first deliver a specific gene into presynaptic neurons, and then deliver a different gene into an identified subset of their postsynaptic neurons, connected by a specific synapse type. Here, we describe targeted gene transfer across a neocortical glutamatergic synapse, using as the model the projection from rat postrhinal to perirhinal cortex. The first gene transfer, into the presynaptic neurons in postrhinal cortex, used a virus vector and standard gene transfer procedures. The vector expresses an artificial peptide neurotransmitter containing a dense core vesicle targeting domain, a NMDA NR1 subunit binding domain (from a monoclonal antibody), and the His tag. Upon release, this peptide neurotransmitter binds to NMDA receptors on the postsynaptic neurons. Antibody-mediated targeted gene transfer to these postsynaptic neurons in perirhinal cortex used a His tag antibody, as the peptide neurotransmitter contains the His tag. Confocal microscopy showed that with untargeted gene transfer, ~3% of the transduced presynaptic axons were proximal to a transduced postsynaptic dendrite. In contrast, with targeted gene transfer, ≥ 20% of the presynaptic axons were proximal to a transduced postsynaptic dendrite. Targeting across other types of synapses might be obtained by modifying the artificial peptide neurotransmitter to contain a binding domain for a different neurotransmitter receptor. This technology may benefit elucidating how specific neurons and subcircuits contribute to circuit physiology, behavior, and learning.

  6. Persistent gene expression in mouse nasal epithelia following feline immunodeficiency virus-based vector gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Sinn, Patrick L; Burnight, Erin R; Hickey, Melissa A; Blissard, Gary W; McCray, Paul B

    2005-10-01

    Gene transfer development for treatment or prevention of cystic fibrosis lung disease has been limited by the inability of vectors to efficiently and persistently transduce airway epithelia. Influenza A is an enveloped virus with natural lung tropism; however, pseudotyping feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV)-based lentiviral vector with the hemagglutinin envelope protein proved unsuccessful. Conversely, pseudotyping FIV with the envelope protein from influenza D (Thogoto virus GP75) resulted in titers of 10(6) transducing units (TU)/ml and conferred apical entry into well-differentiated human airway epithelial cells. Baculovirus GP64 envelope glycoproteins share sequence identity with influenza D GP75 envelope glycoproteins. Pseudotyping FIV with GP64 from three species of baculovirus resulted in titers of 10(7) to 10(9) TU/ml. Of note, GP64 from Autographa californica multicapsid nucleopolyhedrovirus resulted in high-titer FIV preparations (approximately 10(9) TU/ml) and conferred apical entry into polarized primary cultures of human airway epithelia. Using a luciferase reporter gene and bioluminescence imaging, we observed persistent gene expression from in vivo gene transfer in the mouse nose with A. californica GP64-pseudotyped FIV (AcGP64-FIV). Longitudinal bioluminescence analysis documented persistent expression in nasal epithelia for approximately 1 year without significant decline. According to histological analysis using a LacZ reporter gene, olfactory and respiratory epithelial cells were transduced. In addition, methylcellulose-formulated AcGP64-FIV transduced mouse nasal epithelia with much greater efficiency than similarly formulated vesicular stomatitis virus glycoprotein-pseudotyped FIV. These data suggest that AcGP64-FIV efficiently transduces and persistently expresses a transgene in nasal epithelia in the absence of agents that disrupt the cellular tight junction integrity.

  7. Thixotropic solutions enhance viral-mediated gene transfer to airway epithelia.

    PubMed

    Seiler, Michael P; Luner, Paul; Moninger, Thomas O; Karp, Philip H; Keshavjee, Shaf; Zabner, Joseph

    2002-08-01

    Adenovirus-mediated gene transfer to airway epithelia is inefficient in part because its receptor is absent on the apical surface of the airways. Targeting adenovirus to other receptors, increasing the viral concentration, and even prolonging the incubation time with adenovirus vectors can partially overcome the lack of receptors and facilitate gene transfer. Unfortunately, mucociliary clearance would prevent prolonged incubation time in vivo. Thixotropic solutions (TS) are gels that upon a vigorous shearing force reversibly become liquid. We hypothesized that formulating recombinant adenoviruses in TS would decrease virus clearance and thus enhance gene transfer to the airway epithelia. We found that clearance of virus-sized fluorescent beads by human airway epithelia in vitro and by monkey trachea in vivo were markedly decreased when the beads were formulated in TS compared with phosphate-buffered saline (PBS). Adenovirus formulated in TS significantly increased adenovirus-mediated gene transfer of a reporter gene in human airway epithelia in vitro and in murine airway epithelia in vivo. Furthermore, an adenovirus encoding the cystic fibrosis transmembrane regulator (CFTR) gene (AdCFTR) formulated in TS was more efficient in correcting the chloride transport defect in cystic fibrosis airway epithelia than AdCFTR formulated in PBS. These data indicate a novel strategy to augment the efficiency of gene transfer to the airways that may be applicable to a number of different gene transfer vectors and could be of value in gene transfer to cystic fibrosis (CF) airway epithelia in vivo.

  8. Horizontal gene transfer in the acquisition of novel traits by metazoans

    PubMed Central

    Boto, Luis

    2014-01-01

    Horizontal gene transfer is accepted as an important evolutionary force modulating the evolution of prokaryote genomes. However, it is thought that horizontal gene transfer plays only a minor role in metazoan evolution. In this paper, I critically review the rising evidence on horizontally transferred genes and on the acquisition of novel traits in metazoans. In particular, I discuss suspected examples in sponges, cnidarians, rotifers, nematodes, molluscs and arthropods which suggest that horizontal gene transfer in metazoans is not simply a curiosity. In addition, I stress the scarcity of studies in vertebrates and other animal groups and the importance of forthcoming studies to understand the importance and extent of horizontal gene transfer in animals. PMID:24403327

  9. Gene transfer for neovascular age-related macular degeneration.

    PubMed

    Campochiaro, Peter A

    2011-05-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a complex disease that has two phases: a degenerative phase often referred to as nonneovascular AMD (non-NVAMD) or dry AMD and a phase dominated by growth of new blood vessels in the subretinal space, referred to as NVAMD or wet AMD. Advances in the understanding of the molecular pathogenesis of NVAMD have led to new drug therapies that have provided major benefits to patients. However, those treatments require frequent intraocular injections that in many patients must be continued indefinitely to maintain visual benefits. Gene transfer to augment expression of endogenous antiangiogenic proteins is an alternative approach that has the potential to provide long-term stability in patients with NVAMD. Studies in animal models that mimic aspects of NVAMD have identified several possible transgenes, and a clinical trial in patients with advanced NVAMD has suggested that the approach may be feasible. Many important questions remain, but the rationale and preliminary data are compelling. The results of two ongoing clinical trials may answer several of the questions and help direct future research.

  10. Horizontal Gene Transfer and Its Part in the Reorganisation of Genetics during the LUCA Epoch

    PubMed Central

    Jheeta, Sohan

    2013-01-01

    Currently there are five known mechanisms of horizontal gene transfer (HGT): transduction, conjugation, transformation, gene transfer agents and membrane vesicle transfer. The question here is: what part did HGT play in the reorganisation of genetics during the last universal common ancestor (LUCA) epoch? LUCA is a construct to explain the origin of the three domains of life; namely Archaea, Bacteria and Eukarya. This editorial offers a general introduction to the relevance and ultimate significance of HGT in relation to the LUCA. PMID:25369883

  11. Horizontal Gene Transfer and Its Part in the Reorganisation of Genetics during the LUCA Epoch.

    PubMed

    Jheeta, Sohan

    2013-10-28

    Currently there are five known mechanisms of horizontal gene transfer (HGT): transduction, conjugation, transformation, gene transfer agents and membrane vesicle transfer. The question here is: what part did HGT play in the reorganisation of genetics during the last universal common ancestor (LUCA) epoch? LUCA is a construct to explain the origin of the three domains of life; namely Archaea, Bacteria and Eukarya. This editorial offers a general introduction to the relevance and ultimate significance of HGT in relation to the LUCA. [...].

  12. Genomic Data Quality Impacts Automated Detection of Lateral Gene Transfer in Fungi

    PubMed Central

    Dupont, Pierre-Yves; Cox, Murray P.

    2017-01-01

    Lateral gene transfer (LGT, also known as horizontal gene transfer), an atypical mechanism of transferring genes between species, has almost become the default explanation for genes that display an unexpected composition or phylogeny. Numerous methods of detecting LGT events all rely on two fundamental strategies: primary structure composition or gene tree/species tree comparisons. Discouragingly, the results of these different approaches rarely coincide. With the wealth of genome data now available, detection of laterally transferred genes is increasingly being attempted in large uncurated eukaryotic datasets. However, detection methods depend greatly on the quality of the underlying genomic data, which are typically complex for eukaryotes. Furthermore, given the automated nature of genomic data collection, it is typically impractical to manually verify all protein or gene models, orthology predictions, and multiple sequence alignments, requiring researchers to accept a substantial margin of error in their datasets. Using a test case comprising plant-associated genomes across the fungal kingdom, this study reveals that composition- and phylogeny-based methods have little statistical power to detect laterally transferred genes. In particular, phylogenetic methods reveal extreme levels of topological variation in fungal gene trees, the vast majority of which show departures from the canonical species tree. Therefore, it is inherently challenging to detect LGT events in typical eukaryotic genomes. This finding is in striking contrast to the large number of claims for laterally transferred genes in eukaryotic species that routinely appear in the literature, and questions how many of these proposed examples are statistically well supported. PMID:28235827

  13. Identification of multiple independent horizontal gene transfers into poxviruses using a comparative genomics approach

    PubMed Central

    2008-01-01

    Background Poxviruses are important pathogens of humans, livestock and wild animals. These large dsDNA viruses have a set of core orthologs whose gene order is extremely well conserved throughout poxvirus genera. They also contain many genes with sequence and functional similarity to host genes which were probably acquired by horizontal gene transfer. Although phylogenetic trees can indicate the occurrence of horizontal gene transfer and even uncover multiple events, their use may be hampered by uncertainties in both the topology and the rooting of the tree. We propose to use synteny conservation around the horizontally transferred gene (HTgene) to distinguish between single and multiple events. Results Here we devise a method that incorporates comparative genomic information into the investigation of horizontal gene transfer, and we apply this method to poxvirus genomes. We examined the synteny conservation around twenty four pox genes that we identified, or which were reported in the literature, as candidate HTgenes. We found support for multiple independent transfers into poxviruses for five HTgenes. Three of these genes are known to be important for the survival of the virus in or out of the host cell and one of them increases susceptibility to some antiviral drugs. Conclusion In related genomes conserved synteny information can provide convincing evidence for multiple independent horizontal gene transfer events even in the absence of a robust phylogenetic tree for the HTgene. PMID:18304319

  14. Gene recruitment--a common mechanism in the evolution of transfer RNA gene families.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xiujuan; Lavrov, Dennis V

    2011-04-01

    The evolution of alloacceptor transfer RNAs (tRNAs) has been traditionally thought to occur vertically and reflect the evolution of the genetic code. Yet there have been several indications that a tRNA gene could evolve horizontally, from a copy of an alloacceptor tRNA gene in the same genome. Earlier, we provided the first unambiguous evidence for the occurrence of such "tRNA gene recruitment" in nature--in the mitochondrial (mt) genome of the demosponge Axinella corrugata. Yet the extent and the pattern of this process in the evolution of tRNA gene families remained unclear. Here we analyzed tRNA genes from 21 mt genomes of demosponges as well as nuclear genomes of rhesus macaque, chimpanzee and human. We found four new cases of alloacceptor tRNA gene recruitment in mt genomes and eleven cases in the nuclear genomes. In most of these cases we observed a single nucleotide substitution at the middle position of the anticodon, which resulted in the change of not only the tRNA's amino-acid identity but also the class of the amino-acyl tRNA synthetases (aaRSs) involved in amino-acylation. We hypothesize that the switch to a different class of aaRSs may have prevented the conflict between anticodon and amino-acid identities of recruited tRNAs. Overall our results suggest that gene recruitment is a common phenomenon in tRNA multigene family evolution and should be taken into consideration when tRNA evolutionary history is reconstructed.

  15. Identification and structure of the Rhizobium galegae common nodulation genes: evidence for horizontal gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Suominen, L; Roos, C; Lortet, G; Paulin, L; Lindström, K

    2001-06-01

    Rhizobia are soil bacteria able to fix atmospheric nitrogen in symbiosis with leguminous plants. In response to a signal cascade coded by genes of both symbiotic partners, a specific plant organ, the nodule, is formed. Rhizobial nodulation (nod) genes trigger nodule formation through the synthesis of Nod factors, a family of chitolipooligosaccharides that are specifically recognized by the host plant at the first stages of the nodulation process. Here, we present the organization and sequence of the common nod genes from Rhizobium galegae, a symbiotic member of the RHIZOBIACEAE: This species has an intriguing phylogenetic position, being symbiotic among pathogenic agrobacteria, which induce tumors instead of nodules in plant shoots or roots. This apparent incongruence raises special interest in the origin of the symbiotic apparatus of R. galegae. Our analysis of DNA sequence data indicated that the organization of the common nod gene region of R. galegae was similar to that of Sinorhizobium meliloti and Rhizobium leguminosarum, with nodIJ downstream of nodABC and the regulatory nodD gene closely linked to the common nod operon. Moreover, phylogenetic analyses of the nod gene sequences showed a close relationship especially between the common nodA sequences of R. galegae, S. meliloti, and R. leguminosarum biovars viciae and trifolii. This relationship in structure and sequence contrasts with the phylogeny based on 16S rRNA, which groups R. galegae close to agrobacteria and separate from most other rhizobia. The topology of the nodA tree was similar to that of the corresponding host plant tree. Taken together, these observations indicate that lateral nod gene transfer occurred from fast-growing rhizobia toward agrobacteria, after which the symbiotic apparatus evolved under host plant constraint.

  16. Recent tissue engineering-based advances for effective rAAV-mediated gene transfer in the musculoskeletal system.

    PubMed

    Rey-Rico, Ana; Cucchiarini, Magali

    2016-04-01

    Musculoskeletal tissues are diverse and significantly different in their ability to repair upon injury. Current treatments often fail to reproduce the natural functions of the native tissue, leading to an imperfect healing. Gene therapy might improve the repair of tissues by providing a temporarily and spatially defined expression of the therapeutic gene(s) at the site of the injury. Several gene transfer vehicles have been developed to modify various human cells and tissues from musculoskeletal system among which the non-pathogenic, effective, and relatively safe recombinant adeno-associated viral (rAAV) vectors that have emerged as the preferred gene delivery system to treat human disorders. Adapting tissue engineering platforms to gene transfer approaches mediated by rAAV vectors is an attractive tool to circumvent both the limitations of the current therapeutic options to promote an effective healing of the tissue and the natural obstacles from these clinically adapted vectors to achieve an efficient and durable gene expression of the therapeutic sequences within the lesions.

  17. Recent tissue engineering-based advances for effective rAAV-mediated gene transfer in the musculoskeletal system

    PubMed Central

    Rey-Rico, Ana; Cucchiarini, Magali

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Musculoskeletal tissues are diverse and significantly different in their ability to repair upon injury. Current treatments often fail to reproduce the natural functions of the native tissue, leading to an imperfect healing. Gene therapy might improve the repair of tissues by providing a temporarily and spatially defined expression of the therapeutic gene(s) at the site of the injury. Several gene transfer vehicles have been developed to modify various human cells and tissues from musculoskeletal system among which the non-pathogenic, effective, and relatively safe recombinant adeno-associated viral (rAAV) vectors that have emerged as the preferred gene delivery system to treat human disorders. Adapting tissue engineering platforms to gene transfer approaches mediated by rAAV vectors is an attractive tool to circumvent both the limitations of the current therapeutic options to promote an effective healing of the tissue and the natural obstacles from these clinically adapted vectors to achieve an efficient and durable gene expression of the therapeutic sequences within the lesions. PMID:27221233

  18. [Polymeric nanoparticles with therapeutic gene for gene therapy: I. Preparation and in vivo gene transfer study].

    PubMed

    Yang, Jing; Song, Cunxian; Sun, Hongfan; Wu, Li; Tang, Lina; Leng, Xigang; Wang, Pengyan; Xu, Yiyao; Li, Yongjun; Guan, Heng

    2005-06-01

    VEGF nanoparticle (VEGF-NP) was prepared by a multi-emulsification technique using a biodegradable poly-dl-lactic-co-glycolic (PLGA) as matrix material. The nanoparticles were characterized for size, VEGF loading capacity, and in vitro release. VEGF-NP and naked VEGF plasmid were intramuscularly injected into the ischemia site of the rabbit chronic hindlimb ischemia model and the efficiency of VEGF-NP as gene delivery carrier for gene therapy in animal model was evaluated. Gene therapuetic effect was assessed evaluated by RT-PCR, immunohistochemistry and angiography assay. The average size of VEGF-NP was around 300 nm. The encapsulation efficiency of VEGF was above 96%. Loading amount of VEGF in the nanoparticles was about 4%. In vitro, nanoparticles maintained sustained-release of VEGF for two weeks. Two weeks post gene injection the capillary density in VEGF-NP group (81.22 per mm2) was significantly higher than that in control group (29.54 mm2). RT-PCR results showed greatly higher VEGF expression in VEGF-NP group (31.79au * mm) than that in naked VEGF group (9.15 au * mm). As a carrier system for gene therapy in animal model, VEGF-NP is much better than naked DNA plasmid. The results demonstrate great possibility of using NP carrier in human gene therapy.

  19. MGFM: a novel tool for detection of tissue and cell specific marker genes from microarray gene expression data.

    PubMed

    El Amrani, Khadija; Stachelscheid, Harald; Lekschas, Fritz; Kurtz, Andreas; Andrade-Navarro, Miguel A

    2015-08-28

    Identification of marker genes associated with a specific tissue/cell type is a fundamental challenge in genetic and cell research. Marker genes are of great importance for determining cell identity, and for understanding tissue specific gene function and the molecular mechanisms underlying complex diseases. We have developed a new bioinformatics tool called MGFM (Marker Gene Finder in Microarray data) to predict marker genes from microarray gene expression data. Marker genes are identified through the grouping of samples of the same type with similar marker gene expression levels. We verified our approach using two microarray data sets from the NCBI's Gene Expression Omnibus public repository encompassing samples for similar sets of five human tissues (brain, heart, kidney, liver, and lung). Comparison with another tool for tissue-specific gene identification and validation with literature-derived established tissue markers established functionality, accuracy and simplicity of our tool. Furthermore, top ranked marker genes were experimentally validated by reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). The sets of predicted marker genes associated with the five selected tissues comprised well-known genes of particular importance in these tissues. The tool is freely available from the Bioconductor web site, and it is also provided as an online application integrated into the CellFinder platform ( http://cellfinder.org/analysis/marker ). MGFM is a useful tool to predict tissue/cell type marker genes using microarray gene expression data. The implementation of the tool as an R-package as well as an application within CellFinder facilitates its use.

  20. Novel and effective gene transfer technique for study of vascular renin angiotensin system.

    PubMed Central

    Morishita, R; Gibbons, G H; Kaneda, Y; Ogihara, T; Dzau, V J

    1993-01-01

    Vascular renin angiotensin system (RAS) has been reported to exist in vascular wall. However, there is no direct evidence whether the vascular RAS per se can modulate growth of vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMC), because there is no suitable method to investigate the effect of endogenously produced vasoactive substances on growth of these cells. In this study, we transferred angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) and/or renin cDNAs into cultured VSMC using the efficient Sendai virus (hemagglutinating virus of Japan) liposome-mediated gene transfer method, to examine their relative roles in VSMC growth in vitro. Within 35 min or 6 h, the transfection of ACE cDNA into VSMC by hemagglutinating virus of Japan method resulted in a twofold higher ACE activity than control vector, whereas a cationic liposome (Lipofectin)-mediated method failed to show any effect. This in vitro system provided us with the opportunity to investigate the influence of endogenous vascular RAS on VSMC growth. Transfection of ACE or renin cDNA resulted in increased DNA and RNA synthesis, which was inhibited with the specific angiotensin II receptor antagonist (DuP 753: 10(-6) M). Angiotensin I added to ACE-transfected VSMC increased RNA synthesis in a dose-dependent manner. Cotransfection of renin and ACE cDNAs stimulated further RNA synthesis as compared to ACE or renin cDNA alone. These results showed that transfected components of RAS can modulate VSMC growth through the endogenous production of vascular angiotensin II, and that ACE as well as renin are rate limiting in determining the VSMC RAS activity. We conclude that the hemagglutinating virus of Japan liposome-mediated gene transfer technique provides a new and useful tool for study of endogenous vascular modulators such as vascular RAS. Images PMID:8390484

  1. [Values and limits of adenoviral vectors for gene transfer in vivo].

    PubMed

    Briand, P; Kahn, A

    1993-10-01

    Review of the therapeutic use of DNA transfer to treat a certain number of hereditary diseases (such as adenosine deaminase deficiency) or acquired diseases. The strategies (ex vivo manipulation or direct in vivo transfer of the corrective gene), vectors (retrovirus, adenovirus, nonviral vectors), and diseases which can benefit from gene therapy are considered and discussed together with an evaluation of the risk of gene therapy.

  2. A safe packaging line for gene transfer: separating viral genes on two different plasmids.

    PubMed Central

    Markowitz, D; Goff, S; Bank, A

    1988-01-01

    A retrovirus packaging cell line was constructed by using portions of the Moloney murine leukemia virus in which the gag, pol, and env genes of the helper virus were separated onto two different plasmids and in which the psi packaging signal and 3' long terminal repeat were removed. The plasmid containing the gag and pol genes and the plasmid containing the env gene were cotransfected into NIH 3T3 cells. Clones that produced high levels of reverse transcriptase and env protein were tested for their ability to package the replication-defective retrovirus vectors delta neo and N2. One of the gag-pol and env clones (GP+E-86) was able to transfer G418 resistance to recipient cells at a titer of as high as 1.7 X 10(5) when it was used to package delta neo and as high as 4 X 10(6) when it was used to package N2. Supernatants of clones transfected with the intact parent gag-pol-env plasmid 3P0 had comparable titers (as high as 6.5 X 10(4) with delta neo; as high as 1.7 X 10(5) with N2). Tests for recombination events that might result in intact retrovirus showed no evidence for the generation of replication-competent virus. These results suggest that gag, pol, and env, when present on different plasmids, may provide an efficient and safe packaging line for use in retroviral gene transfer. Images PMID:2831375

  3. The transferome of metabolic genes explored: analysis of the horizontal transfer of enzyme encoding genes in unicellular eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Whitaker, John W; McConkey, Glenn A; Westhead, David R

    2009-01-01

    Metabolic networks are responsible for many essential cellular processes, and exhibit a high level of evolutionary conservation from bacteria to eukaryotes. If genes encoding metabolic enzymes are horizontally transferred and are advantageous, they are likely to become fixed. Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) has played a key role in prokaryotic evolution and its importance in eukaryotes is increasingly evident. High levels of endosymbiotic gene transfer (EGT) accompanied the establishment of plastids and mitochondria, and more recent events have allowed further acquisition of bacterial genes. Here, we present the first comprehensive multi-species analysis of E/HGT of genes encoding metabolic enzymes from bacteria to unicellular eukaryotes. The phylogenetic trees of 2,257 metabolic enzymes were used to make E/HGT assertions in ten groups of unicellular eukaryotes, revealing the sources and metabolic processes of the transferred genes. Analyses revealed a preference for enzymes encoded by genes gained through horizontal and endosymbiotic transfers to be connected in the metabolic network. Enrichment in particular functional classes was particularly revealing: alongside plastid related processes and carbohydrate metabolism, this highlighted a number of pathways in eukaryotic parasites that are rich in enzymes encoded by transferred genes, and potentially key to pathogenicity. The plant parasites Phytophthora were discovered to have a potential pathway for lipopolysaccharide biosynthesis of E/HGT origin not seen before in eukaryotes outside the Plantae. The number of enzymes encoded by genes gained through E/HGT has been established, providing insight into functional gain during the evolution of unicellular eukaryotes. In eukaryotic parasites, genes encoding enzymes that have been gained through horizontal transfer may be attractive drug targets if they are part of processes not present in the host, or are significantly diverged from equivalent host enzymes.

  4. yrGATE: a web-based gene-structure annotation tool for the identification and dissemination of eukaryotic genes.

    PubMed

    Wilkerson, Matthew D; Schlueter, Shannon D; Brendel, Volker

    2006-01-01

    Your Gene structure Annotation Tool for Eukaryotes (yrGATE) provides an Annotation Tool and Community Utilities for worldwide web-based community genome and gene annotation. Annotators can evaluate gene structure evidence derived from multiple sources to create gene structure annotations. Administrators regulate the acceptance of annotations into published gene sets. yrGATE is designed to facilitate rapid and accurate annotation of emerging genomes as well as to confirm, refine, or correct currently published annotations. yrGATE is highly portable and supports different standard input and output formats. The yrGATE software and usage cases are available at http://www.plantgdb.org/prj/yrGATE.

  5. yrGATE: a web-based gene-structure annotation tool for the identification and dissemination of eukaryotic genes

    PubMed Central

    Wilkerson, Matthew D; Schlueter, Shannon D; Brendel, Volker

    2006-01-01

    Your Gene structure Annotation Tool for Eukaryotes (yrGATE) provides an Annotation Tool and Community Utilities for worldwide web-based community genome and gene annotation. Annotators can evaluate gene structure evidence derived from multiple sources to create gene structure annotations. Administrators regulate the acceptance of annotations into published gene sets. yrGATE is designed to facilitate rapid and accurate annotation of emerging genomes as well as to confirm, refine, or correct currently published annotations. yrGATE is highly portable and supports different standard input and output formats. The yrGATE software and usage cases are available at . PMID:16859520

  6. Environmental factors influencing gene transfer agent (GTA) mediated transduction in the subtropical ocean.

    PubMed

    McDaniel, Lauren D; Young, Elizabeth C; Ritchie, Kimberly B; Paul, John H

    2012-01-01

    Microbial genomic sequence analyses have indicated widespread horizontal gene transfer (HGT). However, an adequate mechanism accounting for the ubiquity of HGT has been lacking. Recently, high frequencies of interspecific gene transfer have been documented, catalyzed by Gene Transfer Agents (GTAs) of marine α-Proteobacteria. It has been proposed that the presence of bacterial genes in highly purified viral metagenomes may be due to GTAs. However, factors influencing GTA-mediated gene transfer in the environment have not yet been determined. Several genomically sequenced strains containing complete GTA sequences similar to Rhodobacter capsulatus (RcGTA, type strain) were screened to ascertain if they produced putative GTAs, and at what abundance. Five of nine marine strains screened to date spontaneously produced virus-like particles (VLP's) in stationary phase. Three of these strains have demonstrated gene transfer activity, two of which were documented by this lab. These two strains Roseovarius nubinhibens ISM and Nitratireductor 44B9s, were utilized to produce GTAs designated RnGTA and NrGTA and gene transfer activity was verified in culture. Cell-free preparations of purified RnGTA and NrGTA particles from marked donor strains were incubated with natural microbial assemblages to determine the level of GTA-mediated gene transfer. In conjunction, several ambient environmental parameters were measured including lysogeny indicated by prophage induction. GTA production in culture systems indicated that approximately half of the strains produced GTA-like particles and maximal GTA counts ranged from 10-30% of host abundance. Modeling of GTA-mediated gene transfer frequencies in natural samples, along with other measured environmental variables, indicated a strong relationship between GTA mediated gene transfer and the combined factors of salinity, multiplicity of infection (MOI) and ambient bacterial abundance. These results indicate that GTA-mediated HGT in the

  7. Environmental Factors Influencing Gene Transfer Agent (GTA) Mediated Transduction in the Subtropical Ocean

    PubMed Central

    McDaniel, Lauren D.; Young, Elizabeth C.; Ritchie, Kimberly B.; Paul, John H.

    2012-01-01

    Microbial genomic sequence analyses have indicated widespread horizontal gene transfer (HGT). However, an adequate mechanism accounting for the ubiquity of HGT has been lacking. Recently, high frequencies of interspecific gene transfer have been documented, catalyzed by Gene Transfer Agents (GTAs) of marine α-Proteobacteria. It has been proposed that the presence of bacterial genes in highly purified viral metagenomes may be due to GTAs. However, factors influencing GTA-mediated gene transfer in the environment have not yet been determined. Several genomically sequenced strains containing complete GTA sequences similar to Rhodobacter capsulatus (RcGTA, type strain) were screened to ascertain if they produced putative GTAs, and at what abundance. Five of nine marine strains screened to date spontaneously produced virus-like particles (VLP's) in stationary phase. Three of these strains have demonstrated gene transfer activity, two of which were documented by this lab. These two strains Roseovarius nubinhibens ISM and Nitratireductor 44B9s, were utilized to produce GTAs designated RnGTA and NrGTA and gene transfer activity was verified in culture. Cell-free preparations of purified RnGTA and NrGTA particles from marked donor strains were incubated with natural microbial assemblages to determine the level of GTA-mediated gene transfer. In conjunction, several ambient environmental parameters were measured including lysogeny indicated by prophage induction. GTA production in culture systems indicated that approximately half of the strains produced GTA-like particles and maximal GTA counts ranged from 10–30% of host abundance. Modeling of GTA-mediated gene transfer frequencies in natural samples, along with other measured environmental variables, indicated a strong relationship between GTA mediated gene transfer and the combined factors of salinity, multiplicity of infection (MOI) and ambient bacterial abundance. These results indicate that GTA-mediated HGT in the

  8. Gene transfer to the retina of rat by liposome eye drops.

    PubMed

    Matsuo, T; Masuda, I; Yasuda, T; Matsuo, N

    1996-02-27

    Gene delivery to the intraocular tissues of the retina is hampered by complicated surgical interventions to administer the gene. Here we showed that instillation as eye drops of an expression plasmid vector for beta-galactosidase gene carried by the specific kinds of liposomes could transfer the gene to the retinal ganglion cells of rat, without causing any inflammation. This non-surgical, convenient way for gene delivery to the retina would facilitate the development of treatment for various intraocular diseases.

  9. Gene transfer into Solanum tuberosum via Rhizobium spp.

    PubMed

    Wendt, Toni; Doohan, Fiona; Winckelmann, Dominik; Mullins, Ewen

    2011-04-01

    Agrobacterium tumefaciens-mediated transformation (ATMT) is the preferred technique for gene transfer into crops. A major disadvantage of the technology remains the complexity of the patent landscape that surrounds ATMT which restricts its use for commercial applications. An alternative system has been described (Broothaerts et al. in Nature 433:629-633, 2005) detailing the propensity of three rhizobia to transform the model crop Arabidopsis thaliana, the non-food crop Nicotiana tabacum and, at a very low frequency, the monocotyledonous crop Oryza sativa. In this report we describe for the first time the genetic transformation of Solanum tuberosum using the non-Agrobacterium species Sinorhizobium meliloti, Rhizobium sp. NGR234 and Mesorhizobium loti. This was achieved by combining an optimal bacterium and host co-cultivation period with a low antibiotic regime during the callus and shoot induction stages. Using this optimized protocol the transformation frequency (calculated as % of shoots equipped with root systems with the ability to grow in rooting media supplemented with 25 μg/ml hygromycin) of the rhizobia strains was calculated at 4.72, 5.85 and 1.86% for S. meliloti, R. sp. NGR234 and M. loti respectively, compared to 47.6% for the A. tumefaciens control. Stable transgene integration and expression was confirmed via southern hybridisation, quantitative PCR analysis and histochemical screening of both leaf and/or tuber tissue. In light of the rapid advances in potato genomics, combined with the sequencing of the potato genome, the ability of alternative bacteria species to genetically transform this major food crop will provide a novel resource to the Solanaceae community as it continues to develop potato as both a food and non-food crop.

  10. Metagenomic Analyses Reveal That Energy Transfer Gene Abundances Can Predict the Syntrophic Potential of Environmental Microbial Communities

    PubMed Central

    Oberding, Lisa; Gieg, Lisa M.

    2016-01-01

    Hydrocarbon compounds can be biodegraded by anaerobic microorganisms to form methane through an energetically interdependent metabolic process known as syntrophy. The microorganisms that perform this process as well as the energy transfer mechanisms involved are difficult to study and thus are still poorly understood, especially on an environmental scale. Here, metagenomic data was analyzed for specific clusters of orthologous groups (COGs) related to key energy transfer genes thus far identified in syntrophic bacteria, and principal component analysis was used in order to determine whether potentially syntrophic environments could be distinguished using these syntroph related COGs as opposed to universally present COGs. We found that COGs related to hydrogenase and formate dehydrogenase genes were able to distinguish known syntrophic consortia and environments with the potential for syntrophy from non-syntrophic environments, indicating that these COGs could be used as a tool to identify syntrophic hydrocarbon biodegrading environments using metagenomic data. PMID:27681901

  11. Direct gene transfer into rat articular cartilage by in vivo electroporation.

    PubMed

    Grossin, Laurent; Cournil-Henrionnet, Christel; Mir, Lluis M; Liagre, Bertrand; Dumas, Dominique; Etienne, Stéphanie; Guingamp, Corinne; Netter, Patrick; Gillet, Pierre

    2003-05-01

    To establish a system for efficient direct in vivo gene targeting into rat joint, we have evaluated a strategy of gene transfer by means of the delivery of external electric pulses (EP) to the knee after intra-articular injection of a reporter gene (GFP). Rats were killed at various times after the electro gene-therapy to analyze GFP gene expression by immunohistochemistry. GFP staining was detected in the superficial, middle, and deep zones of the patellar cartilage at days 2 and 9, and thereafter only in the deep zone (months 1 and 2). The average percentage of GFP-positive cells was estimated at 30% both one and 2 months after the gene transfer. Moreover, no pathologic change caused by the EP was detected in the cartilage. The level and stability of the long-term GFP expression found in this study demonstrate the feasibility of a treatment of joint disorders (inflammatory or degenerative, focal or diffuse) using electric gene transfer.

  12. Proteomic profiling of salivary gland after nonviral gene transfer mediated by conventional plasmids and minicircles

    PubMed Central

    Geguchadze, Ramaz; Wang, Zhimin; Zourelias, Lee; Perez-Riveros, Paola; Edwards, Paul C; Machen, Laurie; Passineau, Michael J

    2014-01-01

    In this study, we compared gene transfer efficiency and host response to ultrasound-assisted, nonviral gene transfer with a conventional plasmid and a minicircle vector in the submandibular salivary glands of mice. Initially, we looked at gene transfer efficiency with equimolar amounts of the plasmid and minicircle vectors, corroborating an earlier report showing that minicircle is more efficient in the context of a physical method of gene transfer. We then sought to characterize the physiological response of the salivary gland to exogenous gene transfer using global proteomic profiling. Somewhat surprisingly, we found that sonoporation alone, without a gene transfer vector present, had virtually no effect on the salivary gland proteome. However, when a plasmid vector was used, we observed profound perturbations of the salivary gland proteome that compared in magnitude to that seen in a previous report after high doses of adeno-associated virus. Finally, we found that gene transfer with a minicircle induces only minor proteomic alterations that were similar to sonoporation alone. Using mass spectrometry, we assigned protein IDs to 218 gel spots that differed between plasmid and minicircle. Bioinformatic analysis of these proteins demonstrated convergence on 68 known protein interaction pathways, most notably those associated with innate immunity, cellular stress, and morphogenesis. PMID:25414909

  13. GeneTools--application for functional annotation and statistical hypothesis testing.

    PubMed

    Beisvag, Vidar; Jünge, Frode K R; Bergum, Hallgeir; Jølsum, Lars; Lydersen, Stian; Günther, Clara-Cecilie; Ramampiaro, Heri; Langaas, Mette; Sandvik, Arne K; Laegreid, Astrid

    2006-10-24

    Modern biology has shifted from "one gene" approaches to methods for genomic-scale analysis like microarray technology, which allow simultaneous measurement of thousands of genes. This has created a need for tools facilitating interpretation of biological data in "batch" mode. However, such tools often leave the investigator with large volumes of apparently unorganized information. To meet this interpretation challenge, gene-set, or cluster testing has become a popular analytical tool. Many gene-set testing methods and software packages are now available, most of which use a variety of statistical tests to assess the genes in a set for biological information. However, the field is still evolving, and there is a great need for "integrated" solutions. GeneTools is a web-service providing access to a database that brings together information from a broad range of resources. The annotation data are updated weekly, guaranteeing that users get data most recently available. Data submitted by the user are stored in the database, where it can easily be updated, shared between users and exported in various formats. GeneTools provides three different tools: i) NMC Annotation Tool, which offers annotations from several databases like UniGene, Entrez Gene, SwissProt and GeneOntology, in both single- and batch search mode. ii) GO Annotator Tool, where users can add new gene ontology (GO) annotations to genes of interest. These user defined GO annotations can be used in further analysis or exported for public distribution. iii) eGOn, a tool for visualization and statistical hypothesis testing of GO category representation. As the first GO tool, eGOn supports hypothesis testing for three different situations (master-target situation, mutually exclusive target-target situation and intersecting target-target situation). An important additional function is an evidence-code filter that allows users, to select the GO annotations for the analysis. GeneTools is the first "all in one

  14. GeneTools – application for functional annotation and statistical hypothesis testing

    PubMed Central

    Beisvag, Vidar; Jünge, Frode KR; Bergum, Hallgeir; Jølsum, Lars; Lydersen, Stian; Günther, Clara-Cecilie; Ramampiaro, Heri; Langaas, Mette; Sandvik, Arne K; Lægreid, Astrid

    2006-01-01

    Background Modern biology has shifted from "one gene" approaches to methods for genomic-scale analysis like microarray technology, which allow simultaneous measurement of thousands of genes. This has created a need for tools facilitating interpretation of biological data in "batch" mode. However, such tools often leave the investigator with large volumes of apparently unorganized information. To meet this interpretation challenge, gene-set, or cluster testing has become a popular analytical tool. Many gene-set testing methods and software packages are now available, most of which use a variety of statistical tests to assess the genes in a set for biological information. However, the field is still evolving, and there is a great need for "integrated" solutions. Results GeneTools is a web-service providing access to a database that brings together information from a broad range of resources. The annotation data are updated weekly, guaranteeing that users get data most recently available. Data submitted by the user are stored in the database, where it can easily be updated, shared between users and exported in various formats. GeneTools provides three different tools: i) NMC Annotation Tool, which offers annotations from several databases like UniGene, Entrez Gene, SwissProt and GeneOntology, in both single- and batch search mode. ii) GO Annotator Tool, where users can add new gene ontology (GO) annotations to genes of interest. These user defined GO annotations can be used in further analysis or exported for public distribution. iii) eGOn, a tool for visualization and statistical hypothesis testing of GO category representation. As the first GO tool, eGOn supports hypothesis testing for three different situations (master-target situation, mutually exclusive target-target situation and intersecting target-target situation). An important additional function is an evidence-code filter that allows users, to select the GO annotations for the analysis. Conclusion GeneTools

  15. Apramycin resistance as a selective marker for gene transfer in mycobacteria.

    PubMed Central

    Paget, E; Davies, J

    1996-01-01

    We have explored the potential of using the apramycin resistance gene as a marker in mycobacterial gene transfer studies. Shuttle plasmids available for both electroporation and conjugation studies have been constructed, and we have successfully validated the use of the apramycin resistance gene as a component of cloning vectors for Mycobacterium smegmatis, M. bovis BCG, and M. tuberculosis. PMID:8892841

  16. uv excision-repair gene transfer in Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells

    SciTech Connect

    MacInnes, M.A.; Bingham, J.M.; Strniste, G.F.; Thompson, L.H.

    1983-01-01

    uvc-sensitive mutants of CHO cells provide a model system for molecular studies of DNA repair. We present our recent results which show that these mutants are competent recipients for plasmid marker gene transfer and incorporation of a putative CHO repair gene. The applicability and advantages of this system for interspecies human repair gene identification are discussed.

  17. Horizontal Gene Transfer of Pectinases from Bacteria Preceded the Diversification of Stick and Leaf Insects

    PubMed Central

    Shelomi, Matan; Danchin, Etienne G. J.; Heckel, David; Wipfler, Benjamin; Bradler, Sven; Zhou, Xin; Pauchet, Yannick

    2016-01-01

    Genes acquired by horizontal transfer are increasingly being found in animal genomes. Understanding their origin and evolution requires knowledge about the phylogenetic relationships from both source and recipient organisms. We used RNASeq data and respective assembled transcript libraries to trace the evolutionary history of polygalacturonase (pectinase) genes in stick insects (Phasmatodea). By mapping the distribution of pectinase genes on a Polyneoptera phylogeny, we identified the transfer of pectinase genes from known phasmatodean gut microbes into the genome of an early euphasmatodean ancestor that took place between 60 and 100 million years ago. This transfer preceded the rapid diversification of the suborder, enabling symbiont-free pectinase production that would increase the insects’ digestive efficiency and reduce dependence on microbes. Bacteria-to-insect gene transfer was thought to be uncommon, however the increasing availability of large-scale genomic data may change this prevailing notion. PMID:27210832

  18. Gene Transfer Efficiency in Gonococcal Biofilms: Role of Biofilm Age, Architecture, and Pilin Antigenic Variation

    PubMed Central

    Kouzel, Nadzeya; Oldewurtel, Enno R.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Extracellular DNA is an important structural component of many bacterial biofilms. It is unknown, however, to which extent external DNA is used to transfer genes by means of transformation. Here, we quantified the acquisition of multidrug resistance and visualized its spread under selective and nonselective conditions in biofilms formed by Neisseria gonorrhoeae. The density and architecture of the biofilms were controlled by microstructuring the substratum for bacterial adhesion. Horizontal transfer of antibiotic resistance genes between cocultured strains, each carrying a single resistance, occurred efficiently in early biofilms. The efficiency of gene transfer was higher in early biofilms than between planktonic cells. It was strongly reduced after 24 h and independent of biofilm density. Pilin antigenic variation caused a high fraction of nonpiliated bacteria but was not responsible for the reduced gene transfer at later stages. When selective pressure was applied to dense biofilms using antibiotics at their MIC, the double-resistant bacteria did not show a significant growth advantage. In loosely connected biofilms, the spreading of double-resistant clones was prominent. We conclude that multidrug resistance readily develops in early gonococcal biofilms through horizontal gene transfer. However, selection and spreading of the multiresistant clones are heavily suppressed in dense biofilms. IMPORTANCE Biofilms are considered ideal reaction chambers for horizontal gene transfer and development of multidrug resistances. The rate at which genes are exchanged within biofilms is unknown. Here, we quantified the acquisition of double-drug resistance by gene transfer between gonococci with single resistances. At early biofilm stages, the transfer efficiency was higher than for planktonic cells but then decreased with biofilm age. The surface topography affected the architecture of the biofilm. While the efficiency of gene transfer was independent of the

  19. Gene Transfer Efficiency in Gonococcal Biofilms: Role of Biofilm Age, Architecture, and Pilin Antigenic Variation.

    PubMed

    Kouzel, Nadzeya; Oldewurtel, Enno R; Maier, Berenike

    2015-07-01

    Extracellular DNA is an important structural component of many bacterial biofilms. It is unknown, however, to which extent external DNA is used to transfer genes by means of transformation. Here, we quantified the acquisition of multidrug resistance and visualized its spread under selective and nonselective conditions in biofilms formed by Neisseria gonorrhoeae. The density and architecture of the biofilms were controlled by microstructuring the substratum for bacterial adhesion. Horizontal transfer of antibiotic resistance genes between cocultured strains, each carrying a single resistance, occurred efficiently in early biofilms. The efficiency of gene transfer was higher in early biofilms than between planktonic cells. It was strongly reduced after 24 h and independent of biofilm density. Pilin antigenic variation caused a high fraction of nonpiliated bacteria but was not responsible for the reduced gene transfer at later stages. When selective pressure was applied to dense biofilms using antibiotics at their MIC, the double-resistant bacteria did not show a significant growth advantage. In loosely connected biofilms, the spreading of double-resistant clones was prominent. We conclude that multidrug resistance readily develops in early gonococcal biofilms through horizontal gene transfer. However, selection and spreading of the multiresistant clones are heavily suppressed in dense biofilms. Biofilms are considered ideal reaction chambers for horizontal gene transfer and development of multidrug resistances. The rate at which genes are exchanged within biofilms is unknown. Here, we quantified the acquisition of double-drug resistance by gene transfer between gonococci with single resistances. At early biofilm stages, the transfer efficiency was higher than for planktonic cells but then decreased with biofilm age. The surface topography affected the architecture of the biofilm. While the efficiency of gene transfer was independent of the architecture, spreading of

  20. Evolution of the cutinase gene family: evidence for lateral gene transfer of a candidate Phytophthora virulence factor.

    PubMed

    Belbahri, Lassaad; Calmin, Gautier; Mauch, Felix; Andersson, Jan O

    2008-01-31

    Lateral gene transfer (LGT) can facilitate the acquisition of new functions in recipient lineages, which may enable them to colonize new environments. Several recent publications have shown that gene transfer between prokaryotes and eukaryotes occurs with appreciable frequency. Here we present a study of interdomain gene transfer of cutinases -- well documented virulence factors in fungi -- between eukaryotic plant pathogens Phytophthora species and prokaryotic bacterial lineages. Two putative cutinase genes were cloned from Phytophthora brassicae and Northern blotting experiments showed that these genes are expressed early during the infection of the host Arabidopsis thaliana and induced during cyst germination of the pathogen. Analysis of the gene organisation of this gene family in Phytophthora ramorum and P. sojae showed three and ten copies in tight succession within a region of 5 and 25 kb, respectively, probably indicating a recent expansion in Phytophthora lineages by gene duplications. Bioinformatic analyses identified orthologues only in three genera of Actinobacteria, and in two distantly related eukaryotic groups: oomycetes and fungi. Together with phylogenetic analyses this limited distribution of the gene in the tree of life strongly support a scenario where cutinase genes originated after the origin of land plants in a microbial lineage living in proximity of plants and subsequently were transferred between distantly related plant-degrading microbes. More precisely, a cutinase gene was likely acquired by an ancestor of P. brassicae, P. sojae, P. infestans and P. ramorum, possibly from an actinobacterial source, suggesting that gene transfer might be an important mechanism in the evolution of their virulence. These findings could indeed provide an interesting model system to study acquisition of virulence factors in these important plant pathogens.

  1. GIS tools, courses, and learning pathways offered by The National Interagency Fuels, Fire, and Vegetation Technology Transfer (NIFTT)

    Treesearch

    Heather Heward; Kathy H. Schon

    2009-01-01

    As technology continues to evolve in the area of fuel and wildland fire management so does the need to have effective tools and training on these technologies. The National Interagency Fuels Coordination Group has chartered a team of professionals to coordinate, develop, and transfer consistent, efficient, science-based fuel and fire ecology assessment GIS tools and...

  2. Horizontal gene transfer and the evolution of transcriptionalregulation in Escherichia coli

    SciTech Connect

    Price, Morgan N.; Dehal, Paramvir S.; Arkin, Adam P.

    2007-12-20

    Background: Most bacterial genes were acquired by horizontalgene transfer from other bacteria instead of being inherited bycontinuous vertical descent from an ancient ancestor}. To understand howthe regulation of these {acquired} genes evolved, we examined theevolutionary histories of transcription factors and of regulatoryinteractions from the model bacterium Escherichia coli K12. Results:Although most transcription factors have paralogs, these usually arose byhorizontal gene transfer rather than by duplication within the E. colilineage, as previously believed. In general, most neighbor regulators --regulators that are adjacent to genes that they regulate -- were acquiredby horizontal gene transfer, while most global regulators evolvedvertically within the gamma-Proteobacteria. Neighbor regulators wereoften acquired together with the adjacent operon that they regulate, sothe proximity might be maintained by repeated transfers (like "selfishoperons"). Many of the as-yet-uncharacterized (putative) regulators havealso been acquired together with adjacent genes, so we predict that theseare neighbor regulators as well. When we analyzed the histories ofregulatory interactions, we found that the evolution of regulation byduplication was rare, and surprisingly, many of the regulatoryinteractions that are shared between paralogs result from convergentevolution. Another surprise was that horizontally transferred genes aremore likely than other genes to be regulated by multiple regulators, andmost of this complex regulation probably evolved after the transfer.Conclusions: Our results highlight the rapid evolution of niche-specificgene regulation in bacteria.

  3. Plasmid transfer by conjugation as a possible route of horizontal gene transfer and recombination in Xylella fastidiosa

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Horizontal gene transfer is an important component of evolution and adaptation of bacterial species. Xylella fastidiosa has the ability to incorporate exogenous DNA into its genome by homologous recombination at relatively high rates. This genetic recombination is believed to play a role in adaptati...

  4. Possible mechanism of gene transfer into early to mid-gestational mouse fetuses by tail vein injection.

    PubMed

    Kikuchi, N; Nakamura, S; Ohtsuka, M; Kimura, M; Sato, M

    2002-11-01

    Our aim is to develop a simple gene transfer method into egg cylinder and mid-gestational murine embryos. We examined whether plasmid/lipid complexes injected into the tail veins of pregnant transgenic mice can be transferred to fetuses at E 4.5-13.5. When pregnant CETZ-17 mice carrying a transgene consisting of a ubiquitous promoter, floxed EGFP/CAT and the LacZ gene, were injected with a Cre expression vector DNA/lipid complex, Cre-mediated excision of the transgenes, as evaluated by X-gal staining, occurred in 10-50% of fetuses treated at E 11.5-13.5. Although younger embryos remained unstained, PCR analysis revealed low levels of the Cre vector DNA and recombined transgene. To examine the fate of a solution given intravenously, we injected trypan blue or fluorescence-labeled plasmid DNA/lipid complexes into females at E 5.5-11.5 and E 6.5, respectively. Both collected in the visceral endoderm (VE) lineage, but were undetectable in the embryo proper. These findings suggest that substances in maternal blood are delivered to post-implantation embryos via cells of the VE lineage and placenta, but that most are trapped in the VE. If significantly improved, gene transfer to fetuses by injection into the maternal circulation may become a promising tool in fetal gene therapy and embryological studies.

  5. Exact Algorithms for Duplication-Transfer-Loss Reconciliation with Non-Binary Gene Trees.

    PubMed

    Kordi, Misagh; Bansal, Mukul S

    2017-06-01

    Duplication-Transfer-Loss (DTL) reconciliation is a powerful method for studying gene family evolution in the presence of horizontal gene transfer. DTL reconciliation seeks to reconcile gene trees with species trees by postulating speciation, duplication, transfer, and loss events. Efficient algorithms exist for finding optimal DTL reconciliations when the gene tree is binary. In practice, however, gene trees are often non-binary due to uncertainty in the gene tree topologies, and DTL reconciliation with non-binary gene trees is known to be NP-hard. In this paper, we present the first exact algorithms for DTL reconciliation with non-binary gene trees. Specifically, we (i) show that the DTL reconciliation problem for non-binary gene trees is fixed-parameter tractable in the maximum degree of the gene tree, (ii) present an exponential-time, but in-practice efficient, algorithm to track and enumerate all optimal binary resolutions of a non-binary input gene tree, and (iii) apply our algorithms to a large empirical data set of over 4700 gene trees from 100 species to study the impact of gene tree uncertainty on DTL-reconciliation and to demonstrate the applicability and utility of our algorithms. The new techniques and algorithms introduced in this paper will help biologists avoid incorrect evolutionary inferences caused by gene tree uncertainty.

  6. Evaluation of postoperative handover using a tool to assess information transfer and teamwork.

    PubMed

    Nagpal, Kamal; Abboudi, May; Fischler, Lukas; Schmidt, Tanja; Vats, Amit; Manchanda, Chhavi; Sevdalis, Nick; Scheidegger, Daniel; Vincent, Charles; Moorthy, Krishna

    2011-04-01

    To assess the feasibility, validity, and reliability of a postoperative Handover Assessment Tool (PoHAT) and to evaluate the current practices of the postoperative handover at 2 large European hospitals. Postoperative handover is one of the most critical phases in the care of a patient undergoing surgery. However, handovers are largely informal and variable. A thorough understanding of the problem is necessary before safety solutions can be considered. Postoperative Handover Assessment Tool (PoHAT) was developed through task analysis, semistructured interviews, literature review, and learned society guidelines. Subsequent validation was done by the Delphi technique. Feasibility and reliability were then evaluated by direct observation of handovers at 2 large European hospitals. Outcomes measures included information omissions, task errors, teamwork evaluation, duration of handover, and number of distractions. The tool was feasible to use and inter-rater reliability was excellent (r = 0.96, P < 0.001). Evaluation of handover at the 2 study sites revealed a median of 8 information omissions per handover at both the centers (IQR 7-10). There were a median of 3 task errors per handover (IQR 2-4). Thirty-five percent of handovers had distractions, which included competing demands for nurse attention, bleeps, and case-irrelevant communication. This study has established the feasibility, validity, and reliability of a tool for evaluating postoperative handover. In addition to serving as an objective measure of postoperative handover, the tool can also be used to evaluate the efficacy of any intervention developed to improve this process. The study has also shown that postoperative handover is characterized by incomplete transfer of information and failures in the performance of key tasks.

  7. Bioinformatics tools for achieving better gene silencing in plants.

    PubMed

    Ahmed, Firoz; Dai, Xinbin; Zhao, Patrick Xuechun

    2015-01-01

    RNA interference (RNAi) is one of the most popular and effective molecular technologies for knocking down the expression of an individual gene of interest in living organisms. Yet the technology still faces the major issue of nonspecific gene silencing, which can compromise gene functional characterization and the interpretation of phenotypes associated with individual gene knockdown. Designing an effective and target-specific small interfering RNA (siRNA) for induction of RNAi is therefore the major challenge in RNAi-based gene silencing. A 'good' siRNA molecule must possess three key features: (a) the ability to specifically silence an individual gene of interest, (b) little or no effect on the expressions of unintended siRNA gene targets (off-target genes), and (c) no cell toxicity. Although several siRNA design and analysis algorithms have been developed, only a few of them are specifically focused on gene silencing in plants. Furthermore, current algorithms lack a comprehensive consideration of siRNA specificity, efficacy, and nontoxicity in siRNA design, mainly due to lack of integration of all known rules that govern different steps in the RNAi pathway. In this review, we first describe popular RNAi methods that have been used for gene silencing in plants and their serious limitations regarding gene-silencing potency and specificity. We then present novel, rationale-based strategies in combination with computational and experimental approaches to induce potent, specific, and nontoxic gene silencing in plants.

  8. G-SESAME: web tools for GO-term-based gene similarity analysis and knowledge discovery

    PubMed Central

    Du, Zhidian; Li, Lin; Chen, Chin-Fu; Yu, Philip S.; Wang, James Z.

    2009-01-01

    We have developed a set of online tools for measuring the semantic similarities of Gene Ontology (GO) terms and the functional similarities of gene products, and for further discovering biomedical knowledge from the GO database. The tools have been used for about 6.9 million times by 417 institutions from 43 countries since October 2006. The online tools are available at: http://bioinformatics.clemson.edu/G-SESAME. PMID:19491312

  9. Horizontally transferred genes in the genome of Pacific white shrimp, Litopenaeus vannamei

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background In recent years, as the development of next-generation sequencing technology, a growing number of genes have been reported as being horizontally transferred from prokaryotes to eukaryotes, most of them involving arthropods. As a member of the phylum Arthropoda, the Pacific white shrimp Litopenaeus vannamei has to adapt to the complex water environments with various symbiotic or parasitic microorganisms, which provide a platform for horizontal gene transfer (HGT). Results In this study, we analyzed the genome-wide HGT events in L. vannamei. Through homology search and phylogenetic analysis, followed by experimental PCR confirmation, 14 genes with HGT event were identified: 12 of them were transferred from bacteria and two from fungi. Structure analysis of these genes showed that the introns of the two fungi-originated genes were substituted by shrimp DNA fragment, two genes transferred from bacteria had shrimp specific introns inserted in them. Furthermore, around other three bacteria-originated genes, there were three large DNA segments inserted into the shrimp genome. One segment was a transposon that fully transferred, and the other two segments contained only coding regions of bacteria. Functional prediction of these 14 genes showed that 6 of them might be related to energy metabolism, and 4 others related to defense of the organism. Conclusions HGT events from bacteria or fungi were happened in the genome of L. vannamei, and these horizontally transferred genes can be transcribed in shrimp. This is the first time to report the existence of horizontally transferred genes in shrimp. Importantly, most of these genes are exposed to a negative selection pressure and appeared to be functional. PMID:23914989

  10. Horizontal gene transfer of an entire metabolic pathway between a eukaryotic alga and its DNA virus

    PubMed Central

    Monier, Adam; Pagarete, António; de Vargas, Colomban; Allen, Michael J.; Read, Betsy; Claverie, Jean-Michel; Ogata, Hiroyuki

    2009-01-01

    Interactions between viruses and phytoplankton, the main primary producers in the oceans, affect global biogeochemical cycles and climate. Recent studies are increasingly revealing possible cases of gene transfers between cyanobacteria and phages, which might have played significant roles in the evolution of cyanobacteria/phage systems. However, little has been documented about the occurrence of horizontal gene transfer in eukaryotic phytoplankton/virus systems. Here we report phylogenetic evidence for the transfer of seven genes involved in the sphingolipid biosynthesis pathway between the cosmopolitan eukaryotic microalga Emiliania huxleyi and its large DNA virus EhV. PCR assays indicate that these genes are prevalent in E. huxleyi and EhV strains isolated from different geographic locations. Patterns of protein and gene sequence conservation support that these genes are functional in both E. huxleyi and EhV. This is the first clear case of horizontal gene transfer of multiple functionally linked enzymes in a eukaryotic phytoplankton–virus system. We examine arguments for the possible direction of the gene transfer. The virus-to-host direction suggests the existence of ancient viruses that controlled the complex metabolic pathway in order to infect primitive eukaryotic cells. In contrast, the host-to-virus direction suggests that the serial acquisition of genes involved in the same metabolic pathway might have been a strategy for the ancestor of EhVs to stay ahead of their closest relatives in the great evolutionary race for survival. PMID:19451591

  11. A new computational method for the detection of horizontal gene transfer events.

    PubMed

    Tsirigos, Aristotelis; Rigoutsos, Isidore

    2005-01-01

    In recent years, the increase in the amounts of available genomic data has made it easier to appreciate the extent by which organisms increase their genetic diversity through horizontally transferred genetic material. Such transfers have the potential to give rise to extremely dynamic genomes where a significant proportion of their coding DNA has been contributed by external sources. Because of the impact of these horizontal transfers on the ecological and pathogenic character of the recipient organisms, methods are continuously sought that are able to computationally determine which of the genes of a given genome are products of transfer events. In this paper, we introduce and discuss a novel computational method for identifying horizontal transfers that relies on a gene's nucleotide composition and obviates the need for knowledge of codon boundaries. In addition to being applicable to individual genes, the method can be easily extended to the case of clusters of horizontally transferred genes. With the help of an extensive and carefully designed set of experiments on 123 archaeal and bacterial genomes, we demonstrate that the new method exhibits significant improvement in sensitivity when compared to previously published approaches. In fact, it achieves an average relative improvement across genomes of between 11 and 41% compared to the Codon Adaptation Index method in distinguishing native from foreign genes. Our method's horizontal gene transfer predictions for 123 microbial genomes are available online at http://cbcsrv.watson.ibm.com/HGT/.

  12. Biomaterial-Mediated Retroviral Gene Transfer Using Self-Assembled Monolayers

    PubMed Central

    Gersbach, Charles A.; Coyer, Sean R.; Le Doux, Joseph M.; García, Andrés J.

    2007-01-01

    Biomaterial-mediated gene delivery has recently emerged as a promising alternative to conventional gene transfer technologies that focus on direct delivery of viral vectors or DNA-polymer/matrix complexes. However, biomaterial-based strategies have primarily targeted transient gene expression vehicles, including plasmid DNA and adenovirus particles. This study expands on this work by characterizing biomaterial properties conducive to the surface immobilization of retroviral particles and subsequent transduction of mammalian cells at the cell-material interface. Self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) of functionally-terminated alkanethiols on gold were used to establish biomaterial surfaces of defined chemical composition. Gene transfer was observed to be greater than 90% on NH2-terminated surfaces, approximately 50% on COOH-functionalized surfaces, and undetectable on CH3-terminated SAMs, similar to controls of tissue culture-treated polystyrene. Gene delivery via the NH2-SAM was further characterized as a function of coating time, virus concentration, and cell seeding density. Finally, SAM-mediated gene delivery was comparable to fibronectin- and poly-L-lysine-based methods for gene transfer. This work is significant to establishing safe and effective gene therapy strategies, developing efficient methods for gene delivery, and supporting recent progress in the field of biomaterial-mediated gene transfer. PMID:17698189

  13. JAG: A Computational Tool to Evaluate the Role of Gene-Sets in Complex Traits.

    PubMed

    Lips, Esther S; Kooyman, Maarten; de Leeuw, Christiaan; Posthuma, Danielle

    2015-05-14

    Gene-set analysis has been proposed as a powerful tool to deal with the highly polygenic architecture of complex traits, as well as with the small effect sizes typically found in GWAS studies for complex traits. We developed a tool, Joint Association of Genetic variants (JAG), which can be applied to Genome Wide Association (GWA) data and tests for the joint effect of all single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) located in a user-specified set of genes or biological pathway. JAG assigns SNPs to genes and incorporates self-contained and/or competitive tests for gene-set analysis. JAG uses permutation to evaluate gene-set significance, which implicitly controls for linkage disequilibrium, sample size, gene size, the number of SNPs per gene and the number of genes in the gene-set. We conducted a power analysis using the Wellcome Trust Case Control Consortium (WTCCC) Crohn's disease data set and show that JAG correctly identifies validated gene-sets for Crohn's disease and has more power than currently available tools for gene-set analysis. JAG is a powerful, novel tool for gene-set analysis, and can be freely downloaded from the CTG Lab website.

  14. Genome-wide identification of horizontal gene transfer in Fusarium verticillioides

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT), the exchange and stable integration of genetic material between different lineages, breaks species boundaries and generates new biological diversity. In eukaryotes, despite potential barriers, like the nuclear envelope and multicellularity, HGT may be facilitated by t...

  15. Bacteriophage WO Can Mediate Horizontal Gene Transfer in Endosymbiotic Wolbachia Genomes

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Guan H.; Sun, Bao F.; Xiong, Tuan L.; Wang, Yan K.; Murfin, Kristen E.; Xiao, Jin H.; Huang, Da W.

    2016-01-01

    Phage-mediated horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is common in free-living bacteria, and many transferred genes can play a significant role in their new bacterial hosts. However, there are few reports concerning phage-mediated HGT in endosymbionts (obligate intracellular bacteria within animal or plant hosts), such as Wolbachia. The Wolbachia-infecting temperate phage WO can actively shift among Wolbachia genomes and has the potential to mediate HGT between Wolbachia strains. In the present study, we extend previous findings by validating that the phage WO can mediate transfer of non-phage genes. To do so, we utilized bioinformatic, phylogenetic, and molecular analyses based on all sequenced Wolbachia and phage WO genomes. Our results show that the phage WO can mediate HGT between Wolbachia strains, regardless of whether the transferred genes originate from Wolbachia or other unrelated bacteria. PMID:27965627

  16. SAFETY AND EFFICIENCY OF MODULATING PARACELLULAR PERMEABILITY TO ENHANCE AIRWAY EPITHELIAL GENE TRANSFER IN VIVO

    EPA Science Inventory


    ABSTRACT

    We evaluated the safety of agents that enhance gene transfer by modulating paracellular permeability. Lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) and cytokine release were measured in polarized primary human airway epithelial (HAE) cells after luminal application of vehicle, ...

  17. SAFETY AND EFFICIENCY OF MODULATING PARACELLULAR PERMEABILITY TO ENHANCE AIRWAY EPITHELIAL GENE TRANSFER IN VIVO

    EPA Science Inventory


    ABSTRACT

    We evaluated the safety of agents that enhance gene transfer by modulating paracellular permeability. Lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) and cytokine release were measured in polarized primary human airway epithelial (HAE) cells after luminal application of vehicle, ...

  18. Microbubble-enhanced ultrasound exposure improves gene transfer in vascular endothelial cells

    PubMed Central

    Nie, Fang; Xu, Hui-Xiong; Tang, Qing; Lu, Ming-De

    2006-01-01

    AIM: To explore the effects of ultrasound exposure combined with microbubble contrast agent (SonoVue) on the permeability of the cellular membrane and on the expression of plasmid DNA encoding enhanced green fluorescent protein (pEGFP) transfer into human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs). METHODS: HUVECs with fluorescein isothiocyanate-dextran (FD500) and HUVECs with pEGFP were exposed to continuous wave (1.9 MHz, 80.0 mW/cm2) for 5 min, with or without a SonoVue. The percentage of FD500 taken by the HUVECs and the transient expression rate of pEGFP in the HUVECs were examined by fluorescence microscopy and flow cytometry, respectively. RESULTS: The percentage of FD500-positive HUVECs in the group of ultrasound exposure combined with SonoVue was significantly higher than that of the group of ultrasound exposure alone (24.0% ± 5.5% vs 66.6% ± 4.1%, P < 0.001). Compared with the group of ultrasound exposure alone, the transfection expression rate of pEGFP in HUVECs was markedly increased with the addition of SonoVue (16.1% ± 1.9% vs 1.5% ± 0.2%, P < 0.001). No statistical significant difference was observed in the HUVECs survival rates between the ultrasound group with and without the addition of SonoVue (94.1% ± 2.3% vs 91.1% ± 4.1%). CONCLUSION: The cell membrane permeability of HUVECs and the transfection efficiency of pEGFP into HUVECs exposed to ultrasound are significantly increased after addition of an ultrasound contrast agent without obvious damage to the survival of HUVECs. This non-invasive gene transfer method may be a useful tool for clinical gene therapy of hepatic tumors. PMID:17167842

  19. Lightning-triggered electroporation and electrofusion as possible contributors to natural horizontal gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Kotnik, Tadej

    2013-09-01

    Phylogenetic studies show that horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is a significant contributor to genetic variability of prokaryotes, and was perhaps even more abundant during the early evolution. Hitherto, research of natural HGT has mainly focused on three mechanisms of DNA transfer: conjugation, natural competence, and viral transduction. This paper discusses the feasibility of a fourth such mechanism--cell electroporation and/or electrofusion triggered by atmospheric electrostatic discharges (lightnings). A description of electroporation as a phenomenon is followed by a review of experimental evidence that electroporation of prokaryotes in aqueous environments can result in release of non-denatured DNA, as well as uptake of DNA from the surroundings and transformation. Similarly, a description of electrofusion is followed by a review of experiments showing that prokaryotes devoid of cell wall can electrofuse into hybrids expressing the genes of their both precursors. Under sufficiently fine-tuned conditions, electroporation and electrofusion are efficient tools for artificial transformation and hybridization, respectively, but the quantitative analysis developed here shows that conditions for electroporation-based DNA release, DNA uptake and transformation, as well as for electrofusion are also present in many natural aqueous environments exposed to lightnings. Electroporation is thus a plausible contributor to natural HGT among prokaryotes, and could have been particularly important during the early evolution, when the other mechanisms might have been scarcer or nonexistent. In modern prokaryotes, natural absence of the cell wall is rare, but it is reasonable to assume that the wall has formed during a certain stage of evolution, and at least prior to this, electrofusion could also have contributed to natural HGT. The concluding section outlines several guidelines for assessment of the feasibility of lightning-triggered HGT.

  20. Highly efficient gene knockout by injection of TALEN mRNAs into oocytes and host transfer in Xenopus laevis.

    PubMed

    Nakajima, Keisuke; Yaoita, Yoshio

    2015-01-16

    Zinc-finger nucleases, transcription activator-like effector nucleases (TALENs) and the CRISPR/Cas (clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats/CRISPR-associated proteins) system are potentially powerful tools for producing tailor-made knockout animals. However, their mutagenic activity is not high enough to induce mutations at all loci of a target gene throughout an entire tadpole. In this study, we present a highly efficient method for introducing gene modifications at almost all target sequences in randomly selected embryos. The gene modification activity of TALEN is enhanced by adopting the host-transfer technique. In our method, the efficiency is further improved by injecting TALEN mRNAs fused to the 3'UTR of the Xenopus DEADSouth gene into oocytes, which are then transferred into a host female frog, where they are ovulated and fertilized. The addition of the 3'UTR of the DEADSouth gene promotes mRNA translation in the oocytes and increases the expression of TALEN proteins to near-maximal levels three hours post fertilization (hpf). In contrast, TALEN mRNAs without this 3'UTR are translated infrequently in oocytes. Our data suggest that genomic DNA is more sensitive to TALEN proteins from fertilization to the midblastula (MBT) stage. Our method works by increasing the levels of TALEN proteins during the pre-MBT stages.

  1. Gene Editing: A New Tool for Viral Disease.

    PubMed

    Kennedy, Edward M; Cullen, Bryan R

    2017-01-14

    The emergence of the CRISPR/Cas system of antiviral adaptive immunity in bacteria as a facile system for gene editing in mammalian cells may well lead to gene editing becoming a novel treatment for a range of human diseases, especially those caused by deleterious germline mutations. Another potential target for gene editing are DNA viruses that cause chronic pathogenic diseases that cannot be cured by using currently available drugs. We review the current state of this field and discuss the potential advantages and problems with using a gene editing approach as a treatment for diseases caused by DNA viruses.

  2. Alphavirus vectors as tools in neuroscience and gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Lundstrom, Kenneth

    2016-05-02

    Alphavirus-based vectors have been engineered for in vitro and in vivo expression of heterelogous genes. The rapid and easy generation of replication-deficient recombinant particles and the broad range of host cell infection have made alphaviruses attractive vehicles for applications in neuroscience and gene therapy. Efficient delivery to primary neurons and hippocampal slices has allowed localization studies of gene expression and electrophysiological recordings of ion channels. Alphavirus vectors have also been applied for in vivo delivery to rodent brain. Due to the strong local transient expression provided by alphavirus vectors a number of immunization and gene therapy approaches have demonstrated both therapeutic and prophylactic efficacy in various animal models.

  3. Intrapleural 'outside-in' gene therapy: therapeutics for organs of the chest via gene transfer to the pleura.

    PubMed

    Heguy, Adriana; Crystal, Ronald G

    2005-10-01

    The pleural space is an attractive site for using viral vectors to deliver gene products to the lung parenchyma, other thoracic structures and the systemic circulation. The advantages of intrapleural gene transfer using viral vectors include: (i) easy accessibility; (ii) large surface area; (iii) ability to provide high concentrations of secreted gene products to chest structures; (iv) low risk of detrimental effects of possible vector-induced inflammation compared with intravascular delivery; and (v) because it is local, lower vector doses can be used to deliver therapeutic genes to thoracic structures than less efficient systemic routes. Examples of pleural gene transfer include the use of adenovirus vectors to treat mesothelioma by transiently expressing genes that encode toxic proteins, immunomodulatory molecules or anti-angiogenesis factors. Intrapleural delivery of adeno-associated viral vectors represents an efficient strategy to treat alpha1-antitrypsin (alpha1AT) deficiency, achieving high lung and systemic therapeutic levels of alpha1AT. Intrapleural delivery of gene transfer vectors holds promise for the treatment of diseases requiring transient, localized gene expression, as well as sustained expression of genes to correct hereditary disorders requiring localized or systemic expression of the therapeutic protein.

  4. On the Complexity of Duplication-Transfer-Loss Reconciliation with Non-Binary Gene Trees.

    PubMed

    Kordi, Misagh; Bansal, Mukul S

    2017-01-01

    Duplication-Transfer-Loss (DTL) reconciliation has emerged as a powerful technique for studying gene family evolution in the presence of horizontal gene transfer. DTL reconciliation takes as input a gene family phylogeny and the corresponding species phylogeny, and reconciles the two by postulating speciation, gene duplication, horizontal gene transfer, and gene loss events. Efficient algorithms exist for finding optimal DTL reconciliations when the gene tree is binary. However, gene trees are frequently non-binary. With such non-binary gene trees, the reconciliation problem seeks to find a binary resolution of the gene tree that minimizes the reconciliation cost. Given the prevalence of non-binary gene trees, many efficient algorithms have been developed for this problem in the context of the simpler Duplication-Loss (DL) reconciliation model. Yet, no efficient algorithms exist for DTL reconciliation with non-binary gene trees and the complexity of the problem remains unknown. In this work, we resolve this open question by showing that the problem is, in fact, NP-hard. Our reduction applies to both the dated and undated formulations of DTL reconciliation. By resolving this long-standing open problem, this work will spur the development of both exact and heuristic algorithms for this important problem.

  5. A statistical model for bacterial speciation triggered by lateral gene transfer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sidhu, Sunjeet; Peng, Wequin

    2006-03-01

    The process of bacterial speciation has been a major unresolved issue in the study of bacterial evolution. It has been proposed that lateral gene transfer and homologous recombination play critical and complementary roles in speciation. We introduce a statistical model, of a population, for the evolution under lateral gene transfer and local homologous recombination. We examine the evolutionary dynamics and its dependence on various evolutionary operators. J. G. Lawrence, Theor. Popul. Biol. 61, 449(2002).

  6. Fabrication of DNA-antibody-apatite composite layers for cell-targeted gene transfer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yazaki, Yushin; Oyane, Ayako; Araki, Hiroko; Sogo, Yu; Ito, Atsuo; Yamazaki, Atsushi; Tsurushima, Hideo

    2012-12-01

    Surface-mediated gene transfer systems using apatite (Ap)-based composite layers have received increased attention in tissue engineering applications owing to their safety, biocompatibility and relatively high efficiency. In this study, DNA-antibody-apatite composite layers (DA-Ap layers), in which DNA and antibody molecules are immobilized within a matrix of apatite nanocrystals, were fabricated using a biomimetic coating process. They were then assayed for their gene transfer capability for application in a specific cell-targeted gene transfer. A DA-Ap layer that was fabricated with an anti-CD49f antibody showed a higher gene transfer capability to the CD49f-positive CHO-K1 cells than a DNA-apatite composite layer (D-Ap layer). The antibody facilitated the gene transfer capability of the DA-Ap layer only to the specific cells that were expressing corresponding antigens. When the DA-Ap layer was fabricated with an anti-N-cadherin antibody, a higher gene transfer capability compared with the D-Ap layer was found in the N-cadherin-positive P19CL6 cells, but not in the N-cadherin-negative UV♀2 cells or in the P19CL6 cells that were pre-blocked with anti-N-cadherin. Therefore, the antigen-antibody binding that takes place at the cell-layer interface should be responsible for the higher gene transfer capability of the DA-Ap than D-Ap layer. These results suggest that the DA-Ap layer works as a mediator in a specific cell-targeted gene transfer system.

  7. Fabrication of DNA-antibody-apatite composite layers for cell-targeted gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Yazaki, Yushin; Oyane, Ayako; Araki, Hiroko; Sogo, Yu; Ito, Atsuo; Yamazaki, Atsushi; Tsurushima, Hideo

    2012-12-01

    Surface-mediated gene transfer systems using apatite (Ap)-based composite layers have received increased attention in tissue engineering applications owing to their safety, biocompatibility and relatively high efficiency. In this study, DNA-antibody-apatite composite layers (DA-Ap layers), in which DNA and antibody molecules are immobilized within a matrix of apatite nanocrystals, were fabricated using a biomimetic coating process. They were then assayed for their gene transfer capability for application in a specific cell-targeted gene transfer. A DA-Ap layer that was fabricated with an anti-CD49f antibody showed a higher gene transfer capability to the CD49f-positive CHO-K1 cells than a DNA-apatite composite layer (D-Ap layer). The antibody facilitated the gene transfer capability of the DA-Ap layer only to the specific cells that were expressing corresponding antigens. When the DA-Ap layer was fabricated with an anti-N-cadherin antibody, a higher gene transfer capability compared with the D-Ap layer was found in the N-cadherin-positive P19CL6 cells, but not in the N-cadherin-negative UV♀2 cells or in the P19CL6 cells that were pre-blocked with anti-N-cadherin. Therefore, the antigen-antibody binding that takes place at the cell-layer interface should be responsible for the higher gene transfer capability of the DA-Ap than D-Ap layer. These results suggest that the DA-Ap layer works as a mediator in a specific cell-targeted gene transfer system.

  8. Direct transfer of hepatocyte growth factor gene into kidney suppresses cyclosporin A nephrotoxicity in rats.

    PubMed

    Yazawa, Koji; Isaka, Yoshitaka; Takahara, Shiro; Imai, Enyu; Ichimaru, Naotsugu; Shi, Yi; Namba, Yukiomi; Okuyama, Akihiko

    2004-04-01

    The clinical utility of cyclosporin A (CsA) has been limited by its nephrotoxicity, which is characterized by tubular atrophy, interstitial fibrosis and progressive renal impairment. Hepatocyte growth factor (HGF), which plays diverse roles in the regeneration of the kidney following acute renal failure, has been reported to protect against and salvage renal injury by acting as a renotropic and anti-fibrotic factor. Here, we investigated protective effects of HGF gene therapy on CsA-induced nephrotoxicity by using an electroporation-mediated gene transfer method. CsA was orally administered as a daily dose of 30 mg/kg in male Sprague-Dawley rats receiving a low sodium diet (0.03% sodium). Plasmid vector encoding HGF (200 micro g) was transferred into the kidney by electroporation. HGF gene transfer resulted in significant increases in plasma HGF levels. Morphological assessment revealed that HGF gene transfer reduced CsA-induced initial tubular injury and inhibited interstitial infiltration of ED-1-positive macrophages. In addition, northern blot analysis demonstrated that cortical mRNA levels of TGF-beta and type I collagen were suppressed in the HGF group. Finally, HGF gene transfer significantly reduced striped interstitial phenotypic alterations and fibrosis in CsA-treated rats, as assessed by alpha-smooth muscle actin expression and Masson's trichrome staining. These results suggest that HGF may prevent CsA-induced tubulointerstitial fibrosis, indicating that HGF gene transfer may provide a potential strategy for preventing renal fibrosis.

  9. Immune deficiency enhances expression of recombinant human antibody in mice after nonviral in vivo gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Kitaguchi, Kohji; Toda, Mikako; Takekoshi, Masataka; Maeda, Fumiko; Muramatsu, Tatsuo; Murai, Atsushi

    2005-10-01

    A cDNA encoding human antibody against hepatitis B virus was expressed in normal and severe combined immune deficiency (SCID) mice to clarify whether or not host immune status affects circulating levels of the recombinant human antibody (RhAb) after nonviral in vivo gene transfer. For transferring genes, either electroporation (EP) or hydrodynamics-based transfection (HD) was employed. The former was applied to the leg muscle to express the gene, while the latter primarily targeted foreign gene expression in the liver. The expressed RhAb was secreted into the blood circulation, and its existence was assayed by ELISA. Prior to the investigation of host immune status, suitable forms of plasmid expression vectors and types of electrodes were determined in normal mice. Results showed that the vector encoding both the light and heavy chains driven by the CMV promoter had the highest plasma RhAb concentrations, and a pair of pincette-type electrodes conferred the best performance. In both EP and HD, the SCID state showed an increased and prolonged RhAb production in the blood circulation due probably to suppressed recognition of RhAb as a foreign protein to the host animal. The difference in gene transfer methods demonstrated a characteristic pattern: an early and sharp rise followed by a relatively rapid decrease in HD, in contrast to a gradual rise followed by a plateau level maintained in EP. As a result, with the same amount of gene transferred, the plasma RhAb concentrations for the first 7 or 8 weeks were higher in HD than EP, while the reverse was true for the latter period. Multiple gene transfer contributed to maintaining and prolonging high RhAb concentrations in plasma by both methods with similar characteristic patterns accompanying the respective gene transfer method. These results suggest the importance of host immunological potency for maintaining plasma RhAb concentrations if these gene transfer technologies are used for clinical and therapeutic purposes.

  10. GESearch: An Interactive GUI Tool for Identifying Gene Expression Signature.

    PubMed

    Ye, Ning; Yin, Hengfu; Liu, Jingjing; Dai, Xiaogang; Yin, Tongming

    2015-01-01

    The huge amount of gene expression data generated by microarray and next-generation sequencing technologies present challenges to exploit their biological meanings. When searching for the coexpression genes, the data mining process is largely affected by selection of algorithms. Thus, it is highly desirable to provide multiple options of algorithms in the user-friendly analytical toolkit to explore the gene expression signatures. For this purpose, we developed GESearch, an interactive graphical user interface (GUI) toolkit, which is written in MATLAB and supports a variety of gene expression data files. This analytical toolkit provides four models, including the mean, the regression, the delegate, and the ensemble models, to identify the coexpression genes, and enables the users to filter data and to select gene expression patterns by browsing the display window or by importing knowledge-based genes. Subsequently, the utility of this analytical toolkit is demonstrated by analyzing two sets of real-life microarray datasets from cell-cycle experiments. Overall, we have developed an interactive GUI toolkit that allows for choosing multiple algorithms for analyzing the gene expression signatures.

  11. Horizontal gene transfer from diverse bacteria to an insect genome enables a tripartite nested mealybug symbiosis.

    PubMed

    Husnik, Filip; Nikoh, Naruo; Koga, Ryuichi; Ross, Laura; Duncan, Rebecca P; Fujie, Manabu; Tanaka, Makiko; Satoh, Nori; Bachtrog, Doris; Wilson, Alex C C; von Dohlen, Carol D; Fukatsu, Takema; McCutcheon, John P

    2013-06-20

    The smallest reported bacterial genome belongs to Tremblaya princeps, a symbiont of Planococcus citri mealybugs (PCIT). Tremblaya PCIT not only has a 139 kb genome, but possesses its own bacterial endosymbiont, Moranella endobia. Genome and transcriptome sequencing, including genome sequencing from a Tremblaya lineage lacking intracellular bacteria, reveals that the extreme genomic degeneracy of Tremblaya PCIT likely resulted from acquiring Moranella as an endosymbiont. In addition, at least 22 expressed horizontally transferred genes from multiple diverse bacteria to the mealybug genome likely complement missing symbiont genes. However, none of these horizontally transferred genes are from Tremblaya, showing that genome reduction in this symbiont has not been enabled by gene transfer to the host nucleus. Our results thus indicate that the functioning of this three-way symbiosis is dependent on genes from at least six lineages of organisms and reveal a path to intimate endosymbiosis distinct from that followed by organelles.

  12. Direct Gene Transfer into Human Cultured Cells Facilitated by Laser Micropuncture of the Cell Membrane

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tao, Wen; Wilkinson, Joyce; Stanbridge, Eric J.; Berns, Michael W.

    1987-06-01

    The selective alteration of the cellular genome by laser microbeam irradiation has been extensively applied in cell biology. We report here the use of the third harmonic (355 nm) of an yttrium-aluminum garnet laser to facilitate the direct transfer of the neo gene into cultured human HT1080-6TG cells. The resultant transformants were selected in medium containing an aminoglycoside antibiotic, G418. Integration of the neo gene into individual human chromosomes and expression of the gene were demonstrated by Southern blot analyses, microcell-mediated chromosome transfer, and chromosome analyses. The stability of the integrated neo gene in the transformants was shown by a comparative growth assay in selective and nonselective media. Transformation and incorporation of the neo gene into the host genome occurred at a frequency of 8 × 10-4-3 × 10-3. This method appears to be 100-fold more efficient than the standard calcium phosphate-mediated method of DNA transfer.

  13. Herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1)-derived recombinant vectors for gene transfer and gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Marconi, Peggy; Fraefel, Cornel; Epstein, Alberto L

    2015-01-01

    Herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1 ) is a human pathogen whose lifestyle is based on a long-term dual interaction with the infected host, being able to establish both lytic and latent infections. The virus genome is a 153-kilobase pair (kbp) double-stranded DNA molecule encoding more than 80 genes. The interest of HSV-1 as gene transfer vector stems from its ability to infect many different cell types, both quiescent and proliferating cells, the very high packaging capacity of the virus capsid, the outstanding neurotropic adaptations that this virus has evolved, and the fact that it never integrates into the cellular chromosomes, thus avoiding the risk of insertional mutagenesis. Two types of vectors can be derived from HSV-1, recombinant vectors and amplicon vectors, and different methodologies have been developed to prepare large stocks of each type of vector. This chapter summarizes the approach most commonly used to prepare recombinant HSV-1 vectors through homologous recombination, either in eukaryotic cells or in bacteria.

  14. Role of horizontal gene transfer as a control on the coevolution of ribosomal proteins and the genetic code

    SciTech Connect

    Woese, Carl R.; Goldenfeld, Nigel; Luthey-Schulten, Zaida

    2011-03-31

    Our main goal is to develop the conceptual and computational tools necessary to understand the evolution of the universal processes of translation and replication and to identify events of horizontal gene transfer that occurred within the components. We will attempt to uncover the major evolutionary transitions that accompanied the development of protein synthesis by the ribosome and associated components of the translation apparatus. Our project goes beyond standard genomic approaches to explore homologs that are represented at both the structure and sequence level. Accordingly, use of structural phylogenetic analysis allows us to probe further back into deep evolutionary time than competing approaches, permitting greater resolution of primitive folds and structures. Specifically, our work focuses on the elements of translation, ranging from the emergence of the canonical genetic code to the evolution of specific protein folds, mediated by the predominance of horizontal gene transfer in early life. A unique element of this study is the explicit accounting for the impact of phenotype selection on translation, through a coevolutionary control mechanism. Our work contributes to DOE mission objectives through: (1) sophisticated computer simulation of protein dynamics and evolution, and the further refinement of techniques for structural phylogeny, which complement sequence information, leading to improved annotation of genomic databases; (2) development of evolutionary approaches to exploring cellular function and machinery in an integrated way; and (3) documentation of the phenotype interaction with translation over evolutionary time, reflecting the system response to changing selection pressures through horizontal gene transfer.

  15. Interleukin-6 gene transfer reverses body weight gain and fatty liver in obese mice.

    PubMed

    Ma, Yongjie; Gao, Mingming; Sun, Hao; Liu, Dexi

    2015-05-01

    Interleukin-6 (IL-6) is a multifunctional protein and has a major influence on energy metabolism. The current study was designed to assess the therapeutic effect of overexpression of Il-6 gene through gene transfer on high fat diet-induced obese mice. Hydrodynamic delivery of 1 μg pLIVE-IL6 plasmid per mouse into C57BL/6 obese mice resulted in peak level at 10 ng/ml of circulating IL-6 1 day after gene transfer and above 1n g/ml thereafter for a period of 6 weeks. Persistent Il-6 gene expression did not affect food intake but induced a significant reduction in body weight and improved obesity-associated hepatic steatosis. Il-6 gene delivery enhanced thermogenic gene expression and elevated protein levels of phosphorylated STAT3, PGC1α and UCP1 in brown adipose tissue. Il-6 overexpression elevated mRNA levels of lipolysis genes, triggered phosphorylation of STAT3, AMPK, and ACC, and increased expression of genes involved in fatty acid oxidation in skeletal muscle. IL-6 did not affect macrophage infiltration but maintained the M2 macrophage population in adipose tissue. Collectively, these results suggest that overexpression of the Il-6 gene by hydrodynamic gene delivery induces weight loss and alleviates obesity-induced fatty liver and insulin resistance, supporting the notion that gene transfer is a valid approach in managing obesity epidemics.

  16. Design of retrovirus vectors for transfer and expression of the human. beta. -globin gene

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, A.D.; Bender, M.A.; Harris, E.A.S.; Kaleko, M.; Gelinas, R.E.

    1988-11-01

    Regulated expression of the human ..beta..-globin gene has been demonstrated in cultured murine erythroleukemia cells and in mice after retrovirus-mediated gene transfer. However, the low titer of recombinant viruses described to date results in relatively inefficient gene transfer, which limits their usefulness for animal studies and for potential gene therapy in humans for diseases involving defective ..beta..-globin genes. The authors found regions that interfered with virus production within intron 2 of the ..beta..-globin gene and on both sides of the gene. The flanking regions could be removed, but intron 2 was required for ..beta..-globin expression. Inclusion of ..beta..-globin introns necessitates an antisense orientation of the gene within the retrovirus vector. However, they found no effect of the antisense ..beta..-globin transcription on virus production. A region downstream of the ..beta..-globin gene that stimulates expression of the gene in transgenic mice was included in the viruses without detrimental effects on virus titer. Virus titers of over 10/sup 6/ CFU/ml were obtained with the final vector design, which retained the ability to direct regulated expression of human ..beta..-globin in murine erythroleukemia cells. The vector also allowed transfer and expression of the human ..beta..-globin gene in hematopoietic cells (CFU-S cells) in mice.

  17. KAGIANA: An Excel-Based Tool for Retrieving Summary Information on Arabidopsis Genes

    PubMed Central

    Ogata, Yoshiyuki; Sakurai, Nozomu; Aoki, Koh; Suzuki, Hideyuki; Okazaki, Koei; Saito, Kazuki; Shibata, Daisuke

    2009-01-01

    Various public databases provide Arabidopsis gene information via the internet. It is useful to abstract information obtained from such databases. We have developed the KAGIANA tool, which allows a user to retrieve summary information obtained from selective databases and to access pages for a gene of interest in those databases. The tool is based on Microsoft Excel and provides several macro programs for gene expression analyses. It can assist plant biologists in accessing omics information for plant biology. The KAGIANA tool is freely available at http://pmnedo.kazusa.or.jp/kagiana/. PMID:19043069

  18. Exploration of horizontal gene transfer between transplastomic tobacco and plant-associated bacteria.

    PubMed

    Demanèche, Sandrine; Monier, Jean-Michel; Dugat-Bony, Eric; Simonet, Pascal

    2011-10-01

    The likelihood of gene transfer from transgenic plants to bacteria is dependent on the transgene copy number and on the presence of homologous sequences for recombination. The large number of chloroplast genomes in a plant cell as well as the prokaryotic origin of the transgene may thus significantly increase the likelihood of gene transfer from transplastomic plants to bacteria. In order to assess the probability of such a transfer, bacterial isolates, screened for their ability to colonize decaying tobacco plant tissue and possessing DNA sequence similarity to the chloroplastic genes accD and rbcL flanking the transgene (aadA), were tested for their ability to take up extracellular DNA (broad host-range pBBR1MCS-3-derived plasmid, transplastomic plant DNA and PCR products containing the genes accD-aadA-rbcL) by natural or electrotransformation. The results showed that among the 16 bacterial isolates tested, six were able to accept foreign DNA and acquire the spectinomycin resistance conferred by the aadA gene on plasmid, but none of them managed to integrate transgenic DNA in their chromosome. Our results provide no indication that the theoretical gene transfer-enhancing properties of transplastomic plants cause horizontal gene transfer at rates above those found in other studies with nuclear transgenes.

  19. Horizontal transfers of transposable elements in eukaryotes: The flying genes.

    PubMed

    Panaud, Olivier

    2016-01-01

    Transposable elements (TEs) are the major components of eukaryotic genomes. Their propensity to densely populate and in some cases invade the genomes of plants and animals is in contradiction with the fact that transposition is strictly controlled by several molecular pathways acting at either transcriptional or post-transcriptional levels. Horizontal transfers, defined as the transmission of genetic material between sexually isolated species, have long been considered as rare phenomena. Here, we show that the horizontal transfers of transposable elements (HTTs) are very frequent in ecosystems. The exact mechanisms of such transfers are not well understood, but species involved in close biotic interactions, like parasitism, show a propensity to exchange genetic material horizontally. We propose that HTTs allow TEs to escape the silencing machinery of their host genome and may therefore be an important mechanism for their survival and their dissemination in eukaryotes.

  20. Evolutionary transfers of mitochondrial genes to the nucleus in the Populus lineage and coexpression of nuclear and mitochondrial Sdh4 genes.

    PubMed

    Choi, Catherine; Liu, Zhenlan; Adams, Keith L

    2006-01-01

    The transfer of mitochondrial genes to the nucleus is an ongoing evolutionary process in flowering plants. Evolutionarily recent gene transfers provide insights into the evolutionary dynamics of the process and the way in which transferred genes become functional in the nucleus. Genes that are present in the mitochondrion of some angiosperms but have been transferred to the nucleus in the Populus lineage were identified by searches of Populus sequence databases. Sequence analyses and expression experiments were used to characterize the transferred genes. Two succinate dehydrogenase genes and six mitochondrial ribosomal protein genes have been transferred to the nucleus in the Populus lineage and have become expressed. Three transferred genes have gained an N-terminal mitochondrial targeting presequence from other pre-existing genes and two of the transferred genes do not contain an N-terminal targeting presequence. Intact copies of the succinate dehydrogenase gene Sdh4 are present in both the mitochondrion and the nucleus. Both copies of Sdh4 are expressed in multiple organs of two Populus species and RNA editing occurs in the mitochondrial copy. These results provide a genome-wide perspective on mitochondrial genes that were transferred to the nucleus and became expressed, functional genes during the evolutionary history of Populus.

  1. Transference factors as a tool for the estimation of arsenic milk concentration.

    PubMed

    Pérez-Carrera, Alejo; Alvarez-Gonçalvez, Cristina V; Fernández-Cirelli, Alicia

    2016-08-01

    The Chaco Pampean Plain of central Argentina represents one of the largest regions with high levels of arsenic (As) in groundwater. The aim of this study was the assessment of a biotransference factor (BTF) as a tool for the estimation of As concentration in cow's milk from As drinking water concentration. Total As content in livestock drinking water, soil, forage, and milk was determined in farms located in an area of high As groundwater, in order to analyze the relation between As uptake and its transfer to milk. The concentrations of As in milk ranged from 0.5 to 8.0 μg/L. From the results obtained, drinking water may be considered the main source of exposure to As, and the biotransference factor for milk ranges from 1.5 × 10(-5) to 4.3 × 10(-4). Therefore, BTF provides a simple tool for the estimation of arsenic levels in milk through the As livestock drinking water content.

  2. Surface engineering of lentiviral vectors for gene transfer into gene therapy target cells.

    PubMed

    Lévy, Camille; Verhoeyen, Els; Cosset, François-Loïc

    2015-10-01

    Since they allow gene integration into their host genome, lentiviral vectors (LVs) have strong therapeutic potentials, as emphasized by recent clinical trials. The surface-display of the pantropic vesicular stomatitis virus G glycoprotein (VSV-G) on LVs resulted in powerful tools for fundamental and clinical research. However, improved LVs are required either to genetically modify cell types not permissive to classical VSV-G-LVs or to restrict entry to specific cell types. Incorporation of heterologous viral glycoproteins (gps) on LVs often require modification of their cytoplasmic tails and ligands can be inserted into their ectodomain to target LVs to specific receptors. Recently, measles virus (MV) gps have been identified as strong candidates for LV-retargeting to multiple cell types, with the potential to evolve toward clinical applications. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Physicians’ experience adopting the electronic transfer of care communication tool: barriers and opportunities

    PubMed Central

    de Grood, Chloe; Eso, Katherine; Santana, Maria Jose

    2015-01-01

    Purpose The purpose of this study was to assess physicians’ perceptions on a newly developed electronic transfer of care (e-TOC) communication tool and identify barriers and opportunities toward its adoption. Participants and methods The study was conducted in a tertiary care teaching center as part of a randomized controlled trial assessing the efficacy of an e-TOC communication tool. The e-TOC technology was developed through iterative consultation with stakeholders. This e-TOC summary was populated by acute care physicians (AcPs) and communicated electronically to community care physicians (CcPs). The AcPs consisted of attending physicians, resident trainees, and medical students rotating through the Medical Teaching Unit. The CcPs were health care providers caring for patients discharged from hospital to the community. AcPs and CcPs completed validated surveys assessing their experience with the newly developed e-TOC tool. Free text questions were added to gather general comments from both groups of physicians. Units of analysis were individual physicians. Data from the surveys were analyzed using mixed methods. Results AcPs completed 138 linked pre- and post-rotation surveys. At post-rotation, each AcP completed an average of six e-TOC summaries, taking an average of 37 minutes per e-TOC summary. Over 100 CcPs assessed the quality of the TOC summaries, with an overall rating of 8.3 (standard deviation: 1.48; on a scale of 1–10). Thematic analyses revealed barriers and opportunities encountered by physicians toward the adoption of the e-TOC tool. While the AcPs highlighted issues with timeliness, usability, and presentation, the CcPs identified barriers accessing the web-based TOC summaries, emphasizing that the summaries were timely and the quality of information supported continuity of care. Conclusion Despite the barriers identified by both groups of physicians, the e-TOC communication tool was well received. Our experience can serve as a template for

  4. GEM-TREND: a web tool for gene expression data mining toward relevant network discovery

    PubMed Central

    Feng, Chunlai; Araki, Michihiro; Kunimoto, Ryo; Tamon, Akiko; Makiguchi, Hiroki; Niijima, Satoshi; Tsujimoto, Gozoh; Okuno, Yasushi

    2009-01-01

    Background DNA microarray technology provides us with a first step toward the goal of uncovering gene functions on a genomic scale. In recent years, vast amounts of gene expression data have been collected, much of which are available in public databases, such as the Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO). To date, most researchers have been manually retrieving data from databases through web browsers using accession numbers (IDs) or keywords, but gene-expression patterns are not considered when retrieving such data. The Connectivity Map was recently introduced to compare gene expression data by introducing gene-expression signatures (represented by a set of genes with up- or down-regulated labels according to their biological states) and is available as a web tool for detecting similar gene-expression signatures from a limited data set (approximately 7,000 expression profiles representing 1,309 compounds). In order to support researchers to utilize the public gene expression data more effectively, we developed a web tool for finding similar gene expression data and generating its co-expression networks from a publicly available database. Results GEM-TREND, a web tool for searching gene expression data, allows users to search data from GEO using gene-expression signatures or gene expression ratio data as a query and retrieve gene expression data by comparing gene-expression pattern between the query and GEO gene expression data. The comparison methods are based on the nonparametric, rank-based pattern matching approach of Lamb et al. (Science 2006) with the additional calculation of statistical significance. The web tool was tested using gene expression ratio data randomly extracted from the GEO and with in-house microarray data, respectively. The results validated the ability of GEM-TREND to retrieve gene expression entries biologically related to a query from GEO. For further analysis, a network visualization interface is also provided, whereby genes and gene annotations

  5. GeneAnalytics: An Integrative Gene Set Analysis Tool for Next Generation Sequencing, RNAseq and Microarray Data.

    PubMed

    Ben-Ari Fuchs, Shani; Lieder, Iris; Stelzer, Gil; Mazor, Yaron; Buzhor, Ella; Kaplan, Sergey; Bogoch, Yoel; Plaschkes, Inbar; Shitrit, Alina; Rappaport, Noa; Kohn, Asher; Edgar, Ron; Shenhav, Liraz; Safran, Marilyn; Lancet, Doron; Guan-Golan, Yaron; Warshawsky, David; Shtrichman, Ronit

    2016-03-01

    Postgenomics data are produced in large volumes by life sciences and clinical applications of novel omics diagnostics and therapeutics for precision medicine. To move from "data-to-knowledge-to-innovation," a crucial missing step in the current era is, however, our limited understanding of biological and clinical contexts associated with data. Prominent among the emerging remedies to this challenge are the gene set enrichment tools. This study reports on GeneAnalytics™ ( geneanalytics.genecards.org ), a comprehensive and easy-to-apply gene set analysis tool for rapid contextualization of expression patterns and functional signatures embedded in the postgenomics Big Data domains, such as Next Generation Sequencing (NGS), RNAseq, and microarray experiments. GeneAnalytics' differentiating features include in-depth evidence-based scoring algorithms, an intuitive user interface and proprietary unified data. GeneAnalytics employs the LifeMap Science's GeneCards suite, including the GeneCards®--the human gene database; the MalaCards-the human diseases database; and the PathCards--the biological pathways database. Expression-based analysis in GeneAnalytics relies on the LifeMap Discovery®--the embryonic development and stem cells database, which includes manually curated expression data for normal and diseased tissues, enabling advanced matching algorithm for gene-tissue association. This assists in evaluating differentiation protocols and discovering biomarkers for tissues and cells. Results are directly linked to gene, disease, or cell "cards" in the GeneCards suite. Future developments aim to enhance the GeneAnalytics algorithm as well as visualizations, employing varied graphical display items. Such attributes make GeneAnalytics a broadly applicable postgenomics data analyses and interpretation tool for translation of data to knowledge-based innovation in various Big Data fields such as precision medicine, ecogenomics, nutrigenomics, pharmacogenomics, vaccinomics

  6. Potential Energy Diagrams: A Conceptual Tool in the Study of Electron Transfer Reactions.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lewis, Nita A.

    1980-01-01

    Describes how the potential energy diagram may be used to theoretically describe the processes involved in a system undergoing electron transfer. Examines factors important in electron transfer reactions and discusses several classes of electron transfer reactions. (CS)

  7. Phylogenetic analysis of the incidence of lux gene horizontal transfer in Vibrionaceae.

    PubMed

    Urbanczyk, Henryk; Ast, Jennifer C; Kaeding, Allison J; Oliver, James D; Dunlap, Paul V

    2008-05-01

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is thought to occur frequently in bacteria in nature and to play an important role in bacterial evolution, contributing to the formation of new species. To gain insight into the frequency of HGT in Vibrionaceae and its possible impact on speciation, we assessed the incidence of interspecies transfer of the lux genes (luxCDABEG), which encode proteins involved in luminescence, a distinctive phenotype. Three hundred three luminous strains, most of which were recently isolated from nature and which represent 11 Aliivibrio, Photobacterium, and Vibrio species, were screened for incongruence of phylogenies based on a representative housekeeping gene (gyrB or pyrH) and a representative lux gene (luxA). Strains exhibiting incongruence were then subjected to detailed phylogenetic analysis of horizontal transfer by using multiple housekeeping genes (gyrB, recA, and pyrH) and multiple lux genes (luxCDABEG). In nearly all cases, housekeeping gene and lux gene phylogenies were congruent, and there was no instance in which the lux genes of one luminous species had replaced the lux genes of another luminous species. Therefore, the lux genes are predominantly vertically inherited in Vibrionaceae. The few exceptions to this pattern of congruence were as follows: (i) the lux genes of the only known luminous strain of Vibrio vulnificus, VVL1 (ATCC 43382), were evolutionarily closely related to the lux genes of Vibrio harveyi; (ii) the lux genes of two luminous strains of Vibrio chagasii, 21N-12 and SB-52, were closely related to those of V. harveyi and Vibrio splendidus, respectively; (iii) the lux genes of a luminous strain of Photobacterium damselae, BT-6, were closely related to the lux genes of the lux-rib(2) operon of Photobacterium leiognathi; and (iv) a strain of the luminous bacterium Photobacterium mandapamensis was found to be merodiploid for the lux genes, and the second set of lux genes was closely related to the lux genes of the lux-rib(2

  8. Phylogenetic Analysis of the Incidence of lux Gene Horizontal Transfer in Vibrionaceae▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Urbanczyk, Henryk; Ast, Jennifer C.; Kaeding, Allison J.; Oliver, James D.; Dunlap, Paul V.

    2008-01-01

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is thought to occur frequently in bacteria in nature and to play an important role in bacterial evolution, contributing to the formation of new species. To gain insight into the frequency of HGT in Vibrionaceae and its possible impact on speciation, we assessed the incidence of interspecies transfer of the lux genes (luxCDABEG), which encode proteins involved in luminescence, a distinctive phenotype. Three hundred three luminous strains, most of which were recently isolated from nature and which represent 11 Aliivibrio, Photobacterium, and Vibrio species, were screened for incongruence of phylogenies based on a representative housekeeping gene (gyrB or pyrH) and a representative lux gene (luxA). Strains exhibiting incongruence were then subjected to detailed phylogenetic analysis of horizontal transfer by using multiple housekeeping genes (gyrB, recA, and pyrH) and multiple lux genes (luxCDABEG). In nearly all cases, housekeeping gene and lux gene phylogenies were congruent, and there was no instance in which the lux genes of one luminous species had replaced the lux genes of another luminous species. Therefore, the lux genes are predominantly vertically inherited in Vibrionaceae. The few exceptions to this pattern of congruence were as follows: (i) the lux genes of the only known luminous strain of Vibrio vulnificus, VVL1 (ATCC 43382), were evolutionarily closely related to the lux genes of Vibrio harveyi; (ii) the lux genes of two luminous strains of Vibrio chagasii, 21N-12 and SB-52, were closely related to those of V. harveyi and Vibrio splendidus, respectively; (iii) the lux genes of a luminous strain of Photobacterium damselae, BT-6, were closely related to the lux genes of the lux-rib2 operon of Photobacterium leiognathi; and (iv) a strain of the luminous bacterium Photobacterium mandapamensis was found to be merodiploid for the lux genes, and the second set of lux genes was closely related to the lux genes of the lux-rib2

  9. Resurrection of an ancestral gene: functional and evolutionary analyses of the Ngrol genes transferred from Agrobacterium to Nicotiana.

    PubMed

    Aoki, Seishiro

    2004-08-01

    The Ng rol genes, which have high similarity in sequence to the rol genes of Agrobacterium rhizogenes, are present in the genome of untransformed plants of Nicotiana glauca. It is thought that bacterial infection resulted in the transfer of the Ng rol genes to plants early in the evolution of the genus Nicotiana, since several species in this genus contain rol-like sequences but others do not. Plants transformed with the bacterial rol genes exhibit various developmental and morphological changes. The presence of rol-like sequences in plant genomes is therefore thought to have contributed to the evolution of Nicotiana species. This paper focuses on studies of the Ng rol genes in present-day plants and during the evolution of the genus Nicotiana. The functional sequences of several Ng rol genes may have been conserved after their ancient introduction from a bacterium to the plant. Resurrection of an ancestral function of one of the Ng rol genes, as examined by physiological and evolutionary analyses, is also described. The origin of the Ng rol genes is then considered, based on results of molecular phylogenetic analyses. The effects of the horizontal transfer of the Ng rol genes and mutations in the genes are discussed on the plants of the genus Nicotiana during evolution.

  10. Antisense transcription as a tool to tune gene expression.

    PubMed

    Brophy, Jennifer A N; Voigt, Christopher A

    2016-01-14

    A surprise that has emerged from transcriptomics is the prevalence of genomic antisense transcription, which occurs counter to gene orientation. While frequent, the roles of antisense transcription in regulation are poorly understood. We built a synthetic system in Escherichia coli to study how antisense transcription can change the expression of a gene and tune the response characteristics of a regulatory circuit. We developed a new genetic part that consists of a unidirectional terminator followed by a constitutive antisense promoter and demonstrate that this part represses gene expression proportionally to the antisense promoter strength. Chip-based oligo synthesis was applied to build a large library of 5,668 terminator-promoter combinations that was used to control the expression of three repressors (PhlF, SrpR, and TarA) in a simple genetic circuit (NOT gate). Using the library, we demonstrate that antisense promoters can be used to tune the threshold of a regulatory circuit without impacting other properties of its response function. Finally, we determined the relative contributions of antisense RNA and transcriptional interference to repressing gene expression and introduce a biophysical model to capture the impact of RNA polymerase collisions on gene repression. This work quantifies the role of antisense transcription in regulatory networks and introduces a new mode to control gene expression that has been previously overlooked in genetic engineering.

  11. Targeted and efficient transfer of multiple value-added genes into wheat varieties

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    With an objective to optimize an approach to transfer multiple value added genes to a wheat variety while maintaining and improving agronomic performance, two alleles with mutations in the acetolactate synthase (ALS) gene located on wheat chromosomes 6B and 6D providing tolerance to imidazolinone (I...

  12. Horizontal gene transfer and antibiotic resistance plasmids in multi-drug resistant Salmonella enterica serovars

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Antibiotic resistant foodborne pathogens pose serious public health concerns and increase the burden of disease treatment. Antibiotic resistance genes can reside on the bacterial chromosome or on other self-replicating DNA molecules such as plasmids. The resistance genes/DNA can be transferred int...

  13. Multilevel populations and the evolution of antibiotic resistance through horizontal gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Andam, Cheryl P; Fournier, Gregory P; Gogarten, Johann Peter

    2011-09-01

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) can create diversity in the genetic repertoire of a lineage. Successful gene transfer likely occurs more frequently between more closely related organisms, leading to the formation of higher-level exchange groups that in some respects are comparable to single-species populations. Genes that appear fixed in a single species can be replaced through distant homologs or iso-functional analogs acquired through HGT. These genes may originate from other species or they may be acquired by an individual strain from the species pan-genome. Because of their similarity to alleles in a population, we label these gene variants that are exchanged between related species as homeoalleles. In a case study, we show that biased gene transfer plays an important role in the evolution of aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases (aaRS). Many microorganisms make use of these genes against naturally occurring antibiotics. We suggest that the resistance against naturally occurring antibiotics is the likely driving force behind the frequent switching between divergent aaRS types and the reason for the maintenance of these homeoalleles in higher-level exchange groups. Resistance to naturally occurring antibiotics may lead to the maintenance of different types of aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases in Bacteria through gene transfer.

  14. Interleukin 10 gene transfer prevents experimental colitis in rats

    PubMed Central

    Barbara, G; Xing, Z; Hogaboam, C; Gauldie, J; Collins, S

    2000-01-01

    BACKGROUND—The development of colitis in interleukin 10 (IL-10) deficient mice, together with the known anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory properties of this cytokine have prompted consideration of IL-10 as a treatment for inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). However, studies using hrIL-10 in IBD models have yielded inconsistent results.
AIMS—To examine the therapeutic potential of overexpressing the IL-10 gene before and after the induction of experimental colitis in rats.
METHODS—Gene transfer was achieved by intraperitoneal injection of non-replicating human type 5 adenovirus bearing the IL-10 gene, either 24 hours before or one hour after intrarectal administration of dinitrobenzene sulphonic acid in rats. Colonic damage and inflammation was assessed macroscopically and by measuring myeloperoxidase activity and leukotriene B4 concentrations.
RESULTS—Gene transfer increased IL-10 protein in serum for up to six days. IL-10 gene transfer prior to colitis improved colitis macroscopically and histologically, and significantly reduced colonic myeloperoxidase activity and leukotriene B4 concentrations. In contrast, IL-10 gene transfer after the onset of colitis had no beneficial effect.
CONCLUSIONS—Gene therapy using an adenovirus-IL-10 construct was successful in preventing but not in reversing experimental colitis in the rat.


Keywords: gene therapy; colitis; interleukin 10; adenovirus vector; leukotrienes; inflammatory bowel disease; maintenance therapy PMID:10673295

  15. A novel endosperm transfer cell-containing region-specific gene and its promoter in rice.

    PubMed

    Kuwano, Mio; Masumura, Takehiro; Yoshida, Kaoru T

    2011-05-01

    The endosperm of cereal grains is an important resource for both food and feed. It contains three major types of tissue: starchy endosperm, the aleurone layer, and transfer cells. To improve grain quality and quantity using molecular methods, control of transgene expression directed by distinct temporal and spatial promoter activity is necessary. To identify aleurone layer-specific and/or transfer cell-specific promoters in rice, microarray analyses were performed, comparing the aleurone layer containing transfer cells and the other reproductive and vegetative tissues. After confirmation by RT-PCR analysis, we identified two putative aleurone layer and/or transfer cell-specific genes, AL1 and AL2. The promoter regions of these genes and β-glucuronidase (GUS) fusion constructs were stably transformed into rice. The GUS expression patterns indicated that the AL1 promoter was active exclusively in the dorsal aleurone layer adjacent to the main vascular bundle. In rice, transfer cells are differentiated in this region. Therefore, the promoter of the AL1 gene exhibits transfer cell-containing region-specific activity. The AL1 gene encodes a putative anthranilate N-hydroxycinnamoyl/benzoyltransferase. The promoter of this gene will be useful for enhancing uptake of nutrients from the mother cells and protecting filial seeds from pathogen attack.

  16. Horizontal Gene Transfers from Bacteria to Entamoeba Complex: A Strategy for Dating Events along Species Divergence

    PubMed Central

    Romero, Miguel; Ximenez, Cecilia

    2016-01-01

    Horizontal gene transfer has proved to be relevant in eukaryotic evolution, as it has been found more often than expected and related to adaptation to certain niches. A relatively large list of laterally transferred genes has been proposed and evaluated for the parasite Entamoeba histolytica. The goals of this work were to elucidate the importance of lateral gene transfer along the evolutionary history of some members of the genus Entamoeba, through identifying donor groups and estimating the divergence time of some of these events. In order to estimate the divergence time of some of the horizontal gene transfer events, the dating of some Entamoeba species was necessary, following an indirect dating strategy based on the fossil record of plausible hosts. The divergence between E. histolytica and E. nuttallii probably occurred 5.93 million years ago (Mya); this lineage diverged from E. dispar 9.97 Mya, while the ancestor of the latter separated from E. invadens 68.18 Mya. We estimated times for 22 transferences; the most recent occurred 31.45 Mya and the oldest 253.59 Mya. Indeed, the acquisition of genes through lateral transfer may have triggered a period of adaptive radiation, thus playing a major role in the evolution of the Entamoeba genus. PMID:27239333

  17. Studies on the transfer techniques of three maize genes.

    PubMed

    Wang, G; Zhang, H; Ding, Q; Xie, Y; Dai, J

    1996-01-01

    Maize transformation has been carried out through microprojectile bombardment, ultrasonication in a DNA buffer, and ovary-injection with a self-made microinjector. The plasmid pB48.415, which carries a 3'-truncated Bt-toxin protein gene and a hygromycin phosphotransferase (hpt) gene, was used in the transformation. Transgenic maize plants were obtained from immature embryos and embryogenic calli bombarded with a particle gun, embryogenic calli ultrasonicated under different conditions of ovaries injected 10-20 hours after pollination. The results of Dot blotting and Southern blotting analyses proved the integration of the Bt gene into maize genome.

  18. Cre Recombinase Gene Transfer In Vitro and Detection of loxP-Dependent Recombination.

    PubMed

    Ohtsubo, Kazuaki; Marth, Jamey D

    2007-07-01

    INTRODUCTIONAltering the genome of intact cells and organisms by site-specific DNA recombination has become an important gene-transfer methodology. The inclusion of exogenous recombinase target sequences within transferred DNA segments allows subsequent modifications to previously altered genomic structure that increase the utility of gene transfer and enhance experimental design. In this protocol, correctly targeted mouse embryonic stem (ES) cell clones bearing the F[tkneo] allele (containing several loxP sites) are subjected to in vitro Cre gene transfer to generate ES cell subclones bearing either Type 1 (Δ) or Type 2 (F) alleles. Type 2 ES cells are used to generate chimeric mice that are then crossed to germ-line Cre-expressing mice, such as ZP3-Cre transgenic mates. The additional time needed to breed the mice (~2-3 mo) is typically less troublesome than the cost and effort of maintaining multiple clone-derived lines of mice.

  19. Kinetics of conjugative gene transfer on surfaces in granular porous media

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ginn, T.; Massoudieh, A.; Nelson, K.; Mathew, A.; Lambertini, E.

    2005-12-01

    The transfer of genetic material among bacteria in the environment can occur both in the planktonic and attached state. Given the propensity of organisms to exist in sessile microbial communities in oligotrophic conditions, and that such conditions typify the subsurface, this study focuses on exploratory modeling of horizontal gene transfer among surface-associated E. coli in the subsurface. The mathematics so far used to describe the kinetics of conjugation in biofilms are developed largely from experimental observations of planktonic gene transfer, and are absent of lags or plasmid stability that appear experimentally. We develop a model for bacterial filtration and gene transfer in the attached state, for the early stages of biofilm formation using a recently revised filtration theory approach (Nelson and Ginn, 2005) with motility of E. coli described as a continuous time random walk according to data from microflow chamber experiments (Biondi et al., 2002).

  20. Lateral transfer of eukaryotic ribosomal RNA genes: an emerging concern for molecular ecology of microbial eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Yabuki, Akinori; Toyofuku, Takashi; Takishita, Kiyotaka

    2014-07-01

    Ribosomal RNA (rRNA) genes are widely utilized in depicting organismal diversity and distribution in a wide range of environments. Although a few cases of lateral transfer of rRNA genes between closely related prokaryotes have been reported, it remains to be reported from eukaryotes. Here, we report the first case of lateral transfer of eukaryotic rRNA genes. Two distinct sequences of the 18S rRNA gene were detected from a clonal culture of the stramenopile, Ciliophrys infusionum. One was clearly derived from Ciliophrys, but the other gene originated from a perkinsid alveolate. Genome-walking analyses revealed that this alveolate-type rRNA gene is immediately adjacent to two protein-coding genes (ubc12 and usp39), and the origin of both genes was shown to be a stramenopile (that is, Ciliophrys) in our phylogenetic analyses. These findings indicate that the alveolate-type rRNA gene is encoded on the Ciliophrys genome and that eukaryotic rRNA genes can be transferred laterally.

  1. Linear topology confers in vivo gene transfer activity to polyethylenimines.

    PubMed

    Brissault, B; Leborgne, C; Guis, C; Danos, O; Cheradame, H; Kichler, A

    2006-01-01

    Although polyethylenimines (PEIs) are frequently used transfection agents, it is still unclear which of their properties are required for efficient gene delivery. This is even more striking when working in vivo since some PEIs are able to generate significant gene expression, whereas others are not. To facilitate a rational development of compounds with improved transfection activities, studies aimed at identifying the properties involved in the transfection process seem indispensable. In the present work, we investigated how transfection with linear PEI of 22 kDa allows for high reporter gene expression in lungs after intravenous injection, whereas the branched PEI of 25 kDa does not. To this end, we synthesized L-PEI derivatives that are intermediates between linear and branched PEIs. Our results show that the topology plays a crucial role in obtaining in vivo reporter gene expression, whereas the content of primary, secondary, and tertiary amines is only of minor importance.

  2. Gene Transfers Shaped the Evolution of De Novo NAD+ Biosynthesis in Eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Ternes, Chad M.; Schönknecht, Gerald

    2014-01-01

    NAD+ is an essential molecule for life, present in each living cell. It can function as an electron carrier or cofactor in redox biochemistry and energetics, and serves as substrate to generate the secondary messenger cyclic ADP ribose and nicotinic acid adenine dinucleotide phosphate. Although de novo NAD+ biosynthesis is essential, different metabolic pathways exist in different eukaryotic clades. The kynurenine pathway starting with tryptophan was most likely present in the last common ancestor of all eukaryotes, and is active in fungi and animals. The aspartate pathway, detected in most photosynthetic eukaryotes, was probably acquired from the cyanobacterial endosymbiont that gave rise to chloroplasts. An evolutionary analysis of enzymes catalyzing de novo NAD+ biosynthesis resulted in evolutionary trees incongruent with established organismal phylogeny, indicating numerous gene transfers. Endosymbiotic gene transfers probably introduced the aspartate pathway into eukaryotes and may have distributed it among different photosynthetic clades. In addition, several horizontal gene transfers substituted eukaryotic genes with bacterial orthologs. Although horizontal gene transfer is accepted as a key mechanism in prokaryotic evolution, it is supposed to be rare in eukaryotic evolution. The essential metabolic pathway of de novo NAD+ biosynthesis in eukaryotes was shaped by numerous gene transfers. PMID:25169983

  3. Complexity of genetic sequences modified by horizontal gene transfer and degraded-DNA uptake

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tremberger, George; Dehipawala, S.; Nguyen, A.; Cheung, E.; Sullivan, R.; Holden, T.; Lieberman, D.; Cheung, T.

    2015-09-01

    Horizontal gene transfer has been a major vehicle for efficient transfer of genetic materials among living species and could be one of the sources for noncoding DNA incorporation into a genome. Our previous study of lnc- RNA sequence complexity in terms of fractal dimension and information entropy shows a tight regulation among the studied genes in numerous diseases. The role of sequence complexity in horizontal transferred genes was investigated with Mealybug in symbiotic relation with a 139K genome microbe and Deinococcus radiodurans as examples. The fractal dimension and entropy showed correlation R-sq of 0.82 (N = 6) for the studied Deinococcus radiodurans sequences. For comparison the Deinococcus radiodurans oxidative stress tolerant catalase and superoxide dismutase genes under extracellular dGMP growth condition showed R-sq ~ 0.42 (N = 6); and the studied arsenate reductase horizontal transferred genes for toxicity survival in several microorganisms showed no correlation. Simulation results showed that R-sq < 0.4 would be improbable at less than one percent chance, suggestive of additional selection pressure when compared to the R-sq ~ 0.29 (N = 21) in the studied transferred genes in Mealybug. The mild correlation of R-sq ~ 0.5 for fractal dimension versus transcription level in the studied Deinococcus radiodurans sequences upon extracellular dGMP growth condition would suggest that lower fractal dimension with less electron density fluctuation favors higher transcription level.

  4. Targeted gene transfer into rat facial muscles by nanosecond pulsed laser-induced stress waves.

    PubMed

    Kurita, Akihiro; Matsunobu, Takeshi; Satoh, Yasushi; Ando, Takahiro; Sato, Shunichi; Obara, Minoru; Shiotani, Akihiro

    2011-09-01

    We investigate the feasibility of using nanosecond pulsed laser-induced stress waves (LISWs) for gene transfer into rat facial muscles. LISWs are generated by irradiating a black natural rubber disk placed on the target tissue with nanosecond pulsed laser light from the second harmonics (532 nm) of a Q-switched Nd:YAG laser, which is widely used in head and neck surgery and proven to be safe. After injection of plasmid deoxyribose nucleic acid (DNA) coding for Lac Z into rat facial muscles, pulsed laser is used to irradiate the laser target on the skin surface without incision or exposure of muscles. Lac Z expression is detected by X-gal staining of excised rat facial skin and muscles. Strong Lac Z expression is observed seven days after gene transfer, and sustained for up to 14 days. Gene transfer is achieved in facial muscles several millimeters deep from the surface. Gene expression is localized to the tissue exposed to LISWs. No tissue damage from LISWs is observed. LISW is a promising nonviral target gene transfer method because of its high spatial controllability, easy applicability, and minimal invasiveness. Gene transfer using LISW to produce therapeutic proteins such as growth factors could be used to treat nerve injury and paralysis.

  5. Targeted gene transfer into rat facial muscles by nanosecond pulsed laser-induced stress waves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kurita, Akihiro; Matsunobu, Takeshi; Satoh, Yasushi; Ando, Takahiro; Sato, Shunichi; Obara, Minoru; Shiotani, Akihiro

    2011-09-01

    We investigate the feasibility of using nanosecond pulsed laser-induced stress waves (LISWs) for gene transfer into rat facial muscles. LISWs are generated by irradiating a black natural rubber disk placed on the target tissue with nanosecond pulsed laser light from the second harmonics (532 nm) of a Q-switched Nd:YAG laser, which is widely used in head and neck surgery and proven to be safe. After injection of plasmid deoxyribose nucleic acid (DNA) coding for Lac Z into rat facial muscles, pulsed laser is used to irradiate the laser target on the skin surface without incision or exposure of muscles. Lac Z expression is detected by X-gal staining of excised rat facial skin and muscles. Strong Lac Z expression is observed seven days after gene transfer, and sustained for up to 14 days. Gene transfer is achieved in facial muscles several millimeters deep from the surface. Gene expression is localized to the tissue exposed to LISWs. No tissue damage from LISWs is observed. LISW is a promising nonviral target gene transfer method because of its high spatial controllability, easy applicability, and minimal invasiveness. Gene transfer using LISW to produce therapeutic proteins such as growth factors could be used to treat nerve injury and paralysis.

  6. Gene transfers shaped the evolution of de novo NAD+ biosynthesis in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Ternes, Chad M; Schönknecht, Gerald

    2014-09-01

    NAD(+) is an essential molecule for life, present in each living cell. It can function as an electron carrier or cofactor in redox biochemistry and energetics, and serves as substrate to generate the secondary messenger cyclic ADP ribose and nicotinic acid adenine dinucleotide phosphate. Although de novo NAD(+) biosynthesis is essential, different metabolic pathways exist in different eukaryotic clades. The kynurenine pathway starting with tryptophan was most likely present in the last common ancestor of all eukaryotes, and is active in fungi and animals. The aspartate pathway, detected in most photosynthetic eukaryotes, was probably acquired from the cyanobacterial endosymbiont that gave rise to chloroplasts. An evolutionary analysis of enzymes catalyzing de novo NAD(+) biosynthesis resulted in evolutionary trees incongruent with established organismal phylogeny, indicating numerous gene transfers. Endosymbiotic gene transfers probably introduced the aspartate pathway into eukaryotes and may have distributed it among different photosynthetic clades. In addition, several horizontal gene transfers substituted eukaryotic genes with bacterial orthologs. Although horizontal gene transfer is accepted as a key mechanism in prokaryotic evolution, it is supposed to be rare in eukaryotic evolution. The essential metabolic pathway of de novo NAD(+) biosynthesis in eukaryotes was shaped by numerous gene transfers.

  7. GeneAnalytics: An Integrative Gene Set Analysis Tool for Next Generation Sequencing, RNAseq and Microarray Data

    PubMed Central

    Ben-Ari Fuchs, Shani; Lieder, Iris; Mazor, Yaron; Buzhor, Ella; Kaplan, Sergey; Bogoch, Yoel; Plaschkes, Inbar; Shitrit, Alina; Rappaport, Noa; Kohn, Asher; Edgar, Ron; Shenhav, Liraz; Safran, Marilyn; Lancet, Doron; Guan-Golan, Yaron; Warshawsky, David; Shtrichman, Ronit

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Postgenomics data are produced in large volumes by life sciences and clinical applications of novel omics diagnostics and therapeutics for precision medicine. To move from “data-to-knowledge-to-innovation,” a crucial missing step in the current era is, however, our limited understanding of biological and clinical contexts associated with data. Prominent among the emerging remedies to this challenge are the gene set enrichment tools. This study reports on GeneAnalytics™ (geneanalytics.genecards.org), a comprehensive and easy-to-apply gene set analysis tool for rapid contextualization of expression patterns and functional signatures embedded in the postgenomics Big Data domains, such as Next Generation Sequencing (NGS), RNAseq, and microarray experiments. GeneAnalytics' differentiating features include in-depth evidence-based scoring algorithms, an intuitive user interface and proprietary unified data. GeneAnalytics employs the LifeMap Science's GeneCards suite, including the GeneCards®—the human gene database; the MalaCards—the human diseases database; and the PathCards—the biological pathways database. Expression-based analysis in GeneAnalytics relies on the LifeMap Discovery®—the embryonic development and stem cells database, which includes manually curated expression data for normal and diseased tissues, enabling advanced matching algorithm for gene–tissue association. This assists in evaluating differentiation protocols and discovering biomarkers for tissues and cells. Results are directly linked to gene, disease, or cell “cards” in the GeneCards suite. Future developments aim to enhance the GeneAnalytics algorithm as well as visualizations, employing varied graphical display items. Such attributes make GeneAnalytics a broadly applicable postgenomics data analyses and interpretation tool for translation of data to knowledge-based innovation in various Big Data fields such as precision medicine, ecogenomics, nutrigenomics

  8. Multiple lateral gene transfers and duplications have promoted plant parasitism ability in nematodes.

    PubMed

    Danchin, Etienne G J; Rosso, Marie-Noëlle; Vieira, Paulo; de Almeida-Engler, Janice; Coutinho, Pedro M; Henrissat, Bernard; Abad, Pierre

    2010-10-12

    Lateral gene transfer from prokaryotes to animals is poorly understood, and the scarce documented examples generally concern genes of uncharacterized role in the receiver organism. In contrast, in plant-parasitic nematodes, several genes, usually not found in animals and similar to bacterial homologs, play essential roles for successful parasitism. Many of these encode plant cell wall-degrading enzymes that constitute an unprecedented arsenal in animals in terms of both abundance and diversity. Here we report that independent lateral gene transfers from different bacteria, followed by gene duplications and early gain of introns, have shaped this repertoire. We also show protein immunolocalization data that suggest additional roles for some of these cell wall-degrading enzymes in the late stages of these parasites' life cycle. Multiple functional acquisitions of exogenous genes that provide selective advantage were probably crucial for the emergence and proficiency of plant parasitism in nematodes.

  9. Horizontal Gene Transfer and the Evolution of Bacterial and Archaeal Population Structure

    PubMed Central

    Alm, Eric J.; Hanage, William P.

    2013-01-01

    Many bacterial and archaeal lineages have a history of extensive and ongoing horizontal gene transfer and loss, as evidenced by the large differences in genome content even among otherwise closely related isolates. How ecologically cohesive populations might evolve and be maintained under such conditions of rapid gene turnover has remained controversial. Here we synthesize recent literature demonstrating the importance of habitat and niche in structuring horizontal gene transfer. This leads to a model of ecological speciation via gradual genetic isolation triggered by differential habitat association of nascent populations. Further, we hypothesize that subpopulations can evolve through local gene exchange networks by tapping into a gene pool that is adaptive towards local, continuously changing organismic interactions and is, to a large degree, responsible for the observed rapid gene turnover. Overall, these insights help explain how bacteria and archaea form populations that display both ecological cohesion and high genomic diversity. PMID:23332119

  10. NIH tools facilitate matching cancer drugs with gene targets

    Cancer.gov

    A new study details how a suite of web-based tools provides the research community with greatly improved capacity to compare data derived from large collections of genomic information against thousands of drugs. By comparing drugs and genetic targets, re

  11. The agricultural antibiotic carbadox induces phage-mediated gene transfer in Salmonella

    PubMed Central

    Bearson, Bradley L.; Allen, Heather K.; Brunelle, Brian W.; Lee, In Soo; Casjens, Sherwood R.; Stanton, Thaddeus B.

    2013-01-01

    Antibiotics are used for disease therapeutic or preventative effects in humans and animals, as well as for enhanced feed conversion efficiency in livestock. Antibiotics can also cause undesirable effects in microbial populations, including selection for antibiotic resistance, enhanced pathogen invasion, and stimulation of horizontal gene transfer. Carbadox is a veterinary antibiotic used in the US during the starter phase of swine production for improved feed efficiency and control of swine dysentery and bacterial swine enteritis. Carbadox has been shown in vitro to induce phage-encoded Shiga toxin in Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) and a phage-like element transferring antibiotic resistance genes in Brachyspira hyodysenteriae, but the effect of carbadox on prophages in other bacteria is unknown. This study examined carbadox exposure on prophage induction and genetic transfer in Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium, a human foodborne pathogen that frequently colonizes swine without causing disease. S. Typhimurium LT2 exposed to carbadox induced prophage production, resulting in bacterial cell lysis and release of virions that were visible by electron microscopy. Carbadox induction of phage-mediated gene transfer was confirmed by monitoring the transduction of a sodCIII::neo cassette in the Fels-1 prophage from LT2 to a recipient Salmonella strain. Furthermore, carbadox frequently induced generalized transducing phages in multidrug-resistant phage type DT104 and DT120 isolates, resulting in the transfer of chromosomal and plasmid DNA that included antibiotic resistance genes. Our research indicates that exposure of Salmonella to carbadox induces prophages that can transfer virulence and antibiotic resistance genes to susceptible bacterial hosts. Carbadox-induced, phage-mediated gene transfer could serve as a contributing factor in bacterial evolution during animal production, with prophages being a reservoir for bacterial fitness genes in the

  12. Evidence for Horizontal Gene Transfer as Origin of Putrescine Production in Oenococcus oeni RM83▿

    PubMed Central

    Marcobal, Ángela; de las Rivas, Blanca; Moreno-Arribas, M. Victoria; Muñoz, Rosario

    2006-01-01

    The nucleotide sequence of a 17.2-kb chromosomal DNA fragment containing the odc gene encoding ornithine decarboxylase has been determined in the putrescine producer Oenococcus oeni RM83. This DNA fragment contains 13 open reading frames, including genes coding for five transposases and two phage proteins. This description might represent the first evidence of a horizontal gene transfer event as the origin of a biogenic amine biosynthetic locus. PMID:17056681

  13. Gene Editing: Powerful New Tools for Nephrology Research and Therapy.

    PubMed

    Miyagi, Ayano; Lu, Aiwu; Humphreys, Benjamin D

    2016-10-01

    Biologic research is experiencing a transformation brought about by the ability of programmable nucleases to manipulate the genome. In the recently developed CRISPR/Cas system, short RNA sequences guide the endonuclease Cas9 to any location in the genome, causing a DNA double-strand break (DSB). Repair of DSBs allows the introduction of targeted genetic manipulations with high precision. Cas9-mediated gene editing is simple, scalable, and rapid, and it can be applied to virtually any organism. Here, we summarize the development of modern gene editing techniques and the biology of DSB repair on which these techniques are based. We discuss technical points in applying this technology and review its use in model organisms. Finally, we describe prospects for the use of gene editing to treat human genetic diseases. This technology offers tremendous promise for equipping the nephrology research community to better model and ultimately, treat kidney diseases. Copyright © 2016 by the American Society of Nephrology.

  14. Horizontal Gene Transfer of Phytochelatin Synthases from Bacteria to Extremophilic Green Algae.

    PubMed

    Olsson, Sanna; Penacho, Vanessa; Puente-Sánchez, Fernando; Díaz, Silvia; Gonzalez-Pastor, José Eduardo; Aguilera, Angeles

    2017-01-01

    Transcriptomic sequencing together with bioinformatic analyses and an automated annotation process led us to identify novel phytochelatin synthase (PCS) genes from two extremophilic green algae (Chlamydomonas acidophila and Dunaliella acidophila). These genes are of intermediate length compared to known PCS genes from eukaryotes and PCS-like genes from prokaryotes. A detailed phylogenetic analysis gives new insight into the complicated evolutionary history of PCS genes and provides evidence for multiple horizontal gene transfer events from bacteria to eukaryotes within the gene family. A separate subgroup containing PCS-like genes within the PCS gene family is not supported since the PCS genes are monophyletic only when the PCS-like genes are included. The presence and functionality of the novel genes in the organisms were verified by genomic sequencing and qRT-PCR. Furthermore, the novel PCS gene in Chlamydomonas acidophila showed very strong induction by cadmium. Cloning and expression of the gene in Escherichia coli clearly improves its cadmium resistance. The gene in Dunaliella was not induced, most likely due to gene duplication.

  15. Powerful tools for genetic modification: Advances in gene editing.

    PubMed

    Roesch, Erica A; Drumm, Mitchell L

    2017-09-27

    Recent discoveries and technical advances in genetic engineering, methods called gene or genome editing, provide hope for repairing genes that cause diseases like cystic fibrosis (CF) or otherwise altering a gene for therapeutic benefit. There are both hopes and hurdles with these technologies, with new ideas emerging almost daily. Initial studies using intestinal organoid cultures carrying the common, F508del mutation have shown that gene editing by CRISPR/Cas9 can convert cells lacking CFTR function to cells with normal channel function, providing a precedent that this technology can be harnessed for CF. While this is an important precedent, the challenges that remain are not trivial. A logistical issue for this and many other genetic diseases is genetic heterogeneity. Approximately, 2000 mutations associated with CF have been found in CFTR, the gene responsible for CF, and thus a feasible strategy that would encompass all individuals affected by the disease is particularly difficult to envision. However, single strategies that would be applicable to all subjects affected by CF have been conceived and are being investigated. With all of these approaches, efficiency (the proportion of cells edited), accuracy (how often other sites in the genome are affected), and delivery of the gene editing components to the desired cells are perhaps the most significant, impending hurdles. Our understanding of each of these areas is increasing rapidly, and while it is impossible to predict when a successful strategy will reach the clinic, there is every reason to believe it is a question of "when" and not "if." © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. Gene transfer to the desiccation-tolerant cyanobacterium Chroococcidiopsis.

    PubMed

    Billi, D; Friedmann, E I; Helm, R F; Potts, M

    2001-04-01

    The coccoid cyanobacterium Chroococcidiopsis dominates microbial communities in the most extreme arid hot and cold deserts. These communities withstand constraints that result from multiple cycles of drying and wetting and/or prolonged desiccation, through mechanisms which remain poorly understood. Here we describe the first system for genetic manipulation of Chroococcidiopsis. Plasmids pDUCA7 and pRL489, based on the pDU1 replicon of Nostoc sp. strain PCC 7524, were transferred to different isolates of Chroococcidiopsis via conjugation and electroporation. This report provides the first evidence that pDU1 replicons can be maintained in cyanobacteria other than Nostoc and Anabaena. Following conjugation, both plasmids replicated in Chroococcidiopsis sp. strains 029, 057, and 123 but not in strains 171 and 584. Both plasmids were electroporated into strains 029 and 123 but not into strains 057, 171, and 584. Expression of P(psbA)-luxAB on pRL489 was visualized through in vivo luminescence. Efficiencies of conjugative transfer for pDUCA7 and pRL489 into Chroococcidiopsis sp. strain 029 were approximately 10(-2) and 10(-4) transconjugants per recipient cell, respectively. Conjugative transfer occurred with a lower efficiency into strains 057 and 123. Electrotransformation efficiencies of about 10(-4) electrotransformants per recipient cell were achieved with strains 029 and 123, using either pDUCA7 or pRL489. Extracellular deoxyribonucleases were associated with each of the five strains. Phylogenetic analysis, based upon the V6 to V8 variable regions of 16S rRNA, suggests that desert strains 057, 123, 171, and 029 are distinct from the type species strain Chroococcidiopsis thermalis PCC 7203. The high efficiency of conjugative transfer of Chroococcidiopsis sp. strain 029, from the Negev Desert, Israel, makes this a suitable experimental strain for genetic studies on desiccation tolerance.

  17. Gene Loss and Horizontal Gene Transfer Contributed to the Genome Evolution of the Extreme Acidophile "Ferrovum".

    PubMed

    Ullrich, Sophie R; González, Carolina; Poehlein, Anja; Tischler, Judith S; Daniel, Rolf; Schlömann, Michael; Holmes, David S; Mühling, Martin

    2016-01-01

    Acid mine drainage (AMD), associated with active and abandoned mining sites, is a habitat for acidophilic microorganisms that gain energy from the oxidation of reduced sulfur compounds and ferrous iron and that thrive at pH below 4. Members of the recently proposed genus "Ferrovum" are the first acidophilic iron oxidizers to be described within the Betaproteobacteria. Although they have been detected as typical community members in AMD habitats worldwide, knowledge of their phylogenetic and metabolic diversity is scarce. Genomics approaches appear to be most promising in addressing this lacuna since isolation and cultivation of "Ferrovum" has proven to be extremely difficult and has so far only been successful for the designated type strain "Ferrovum myxofaciens" P3G. In this study, the genomes of two novel strains of "Ferrovum" (PN-J185 and Z-31) derived from water samples of a mine water treatment plant were sequenced. These genomes were compared with those of "Ferrovum" sp. JA12 that also originated from the mine water treatment plant, and of the type strain (P3G). Phylogenomic scrutiny suggests that the four strains represent three "Ferrovum" species that cluster in two groups (1 and 2). Comprehensive analysis of their predicted metabolic pathways revealed that these groups harbor characteristic metabolic profiles, notably with respect to motility, chemotaxis, nitrogen metabolism, biofilm formation and their potential strategies to cope with the acidic environment. For example, while the "F. myxofaciens" strains (group 1) appear to be motile and diazotrophic, the non-motile group 2 strains have the predicted potential to use a greater variety of fixed nitrogen sources. Furthermore, analysis of their genome synteny provides first insights into their genome evolution, suggesting that horizontal gene transfer and genome reduction in the group 2 strains by loss of genes encoding complete metabolic pathways or physiological features contributed to the observed

  18. Guanidinylated block copolymers for gene transfer: A comparison with amine-based materials for in vitro and in vivo gene transfer efficiency

    PubMed Central

    Choi, Jennifer L.; Tan, James-Kevin Y.; Sellers, Drew L.; Wei, Hua; Horner, Philip J.; Pun, Suzie H.

    2015-01-01

    There is currently no cure for neuron loss in the brain, which can occur due to traumatic injury or neurodegenerative disease. One method proposed to enhance neurogenesis in the brain is gene transfer to neural progenitor cells. In this work, a guanidine-based copolymer was synthesized and compared to an amine-based copolymer analog previously shown to effectively deliver genes in the murine brain. The guanidine-based copolymer was more efficient at gene transfer to immortalized, cultured cell lines; however, the amine-based copolymer was more effective at gene transfer in the brain. DNA condensation studies revealed that the nucleic acid complexes formed with the guanidine-based copolymer were more susceptible to unpackaging in the presence of heparin sulfate proteoglycans compared to complexes formed with the amine-based copolymer. Therefore, polyplexes formed from the amine-based copolymer may be more resistant to destabilization by the heparan sulfate proteoglycans present in the stem cell niches of the brain. PMID:25907042

  19. Horizontal Transfer and Death of a Fungal Secondary Metabolic Gene Cluster

    PubMed Central

    Campbell, Matthew A.; Rokas, Antonis; Slot, Jason C.

    2012-01-01

    A cluster composed of four structural and two regulatory genes found in several species of the fungal genus Fusarium (class Sordariomycetes) is responsible for the production of the red pigment bikaverin. We discovered that the unrelated fungus Botrytis cinerea (class Leotiomycetes) contains a cluster of five genes that is highly similar in sequence and gene order to the Fusarium bikaverin cluster. Synteny conservation, nucleotide composition, and phylogenetic analyses of the cluster genes indicate that the B. cinerea cluster was acquired via horizontal transfer from a Fusarium donor. Upon or subsequent to the transfer, the B. cinerea gene cluster became inactivated; one of the four structural genes is missing, two others are pseudogenes, and the fourth structural gene shows an accelerated rate of nonsynonymous substitutions along the B. cinerea lineage, consistent with relaxation of selective constraints. Interestingly, the bik4 regulatory gene is still intact and presumably functional, whereas bik5, which is a pathway-specific regulator, also shows a mild but significant acceleration of evolutionary rate along the B. cinerea lineage. This selective preservation of the bik4 regulator suggests that its conservation is due to its likely involvement in other non–bikaverin-related biological processes in B. cinerea. Thus, in addition to novel metabolism, horizontal transfer of wholesale metabolic gene clusters might also be contributing novel regulation. PMID:22294497

  20. Two Horizontally Transferred Xenobiotic Resistance Gene Clusters Associated with Detoxification of Benzoxazolinones by Fusarium Species

    PubMed Central

    Glenn, Anthony E.; Davis, C. Britton; Gao, Minglu; Gold, Scott E.; Mitchell, Trevor R.; Proctor, Robert H.; Stewart, Jane E.; Snook, Maurice E.

    2016-01-01

    Microbes encounter a broad spectrum of antimicrobial compounds in their environments and often possess metabolic strategies to detoxify such xenobiotics. We have previously shown that Fusarium verticillioides, a fungal pathogen of maize known for its production of fumonisin mycotoxins, possesses two unlinked loci, FDB1 and FDB2, necessary for detoxification of antimicrobial compounds produced by maize, including the γ-lactam 2-benzoxazolinone (BOA). In support of these earlier studies, microarray analysis of F. verticillioides exposed to BOA identified the induction of multiple genes at FDB1 and FDB2, indicating the loci consist of gene clusters. One of the FDB1 cluster genes encoded a protein having domain homology to the metallo-β-lactamase (MBL) superfamily. Deletion of this gene (MBL1) rendered F. verticillioides incapable of metabolizing BOA and thus unable to grow on BOA-amended media. Deletion of other FDB1 cluster genes, in particular AMD1 and DLH1, did not affect BOA degradation. Phylogenetic analyses and topology testing of the FDB1 and FDB2 cluster genes suggested two horizontal transfer events among fungi, one being transfer of FDB1 from Fusarium to Colletotrichum, and the second being transfer of the FDB2 cluster from Fusarium to Aspergillus. Together, the results suggest that plant-derived xenobiotics have exerted evolutionary pressure on these fungi, leading to horizontal transfer of genes that enhance fitness or virulence. PMID:26808652

  1. Phylogenetic modeling of lateral gene transfer reconstructs the pattern and relative timing of speciations

    PubMed Central

    Szöllősi, Gergely J.; Boussau, Bastien; Abby, Sophie S.; Tannier, Eric; Daubin, Vincent

    2012-01-01

    The timing of the evolution of microbial life has largely remained elusive due to the scarcity of prokaryotic fossil record and the confounding effects of the exchange of genes among possibly distant species. The history of gene transfer events, however, is not a series of individual oddities; it records which lineages were concurrent and thus provides information on the timing of species diversification. Here, we use a probabilistic model of genome evolution that accounts for differences between gene phylogenies and the species tree as series of duplication, transfer, and loss events to reconstruct chronologically ordered species phylogenies. Using simulations we show that we can robustly recover accurate chronologically ordered species phylogenies in the presence of gene tree reconstruction errors and realistic rates of duplication, transfer, and loss. Using genomic data we demonstrate that we can infer rooted species phylogenies using homologous gene families from complete genomes of 10 bacterial and archaeal groups. Focusing on cyanobacteria, distinguished among prokaryotes by a relative abundance of fossils, we infer the maximum likelihood chronologically ordered species phylogeny based on 36 genomes with 8,332 homologous gene families. We find the order of speciation events to be in full agreement with the fossil record and the inferred phylogeny of cyanobacteria to be consistent with the phylogeny recovered from established phylogenomics methods. Our results demonstrate that lateral gene transfers, detected by probabilistic models of genome evolution, can be used as a source of information on the timing of evolution, providing a valuable complement to the limited prokaryotic fossil record. PMID:23043116

  2. Carotenoids in unexpected places: gall midges, lateral gene transfer, and carotenoid biosynthesis in animals.

    PubMed

    Cobbs, Cassidy; Heath, Jeremy; Stireman, John O; Abbot, Patrick

    2013-08-01

    Carotenoids are conjugated isoprenoid molecules with many important physiological functions in organisms, including roles in photosynthesis, oxidative stress reduction, vision, diapause, photoperiodism, and immunity. Until recently, it was believed that only plants, microorganisms, and fungi were capable of synthesizing carotenoids and that animals acquired them from their diet, but recent studies have demonstrated that two arthropods (pea aphid and spider mite) possess a pair of genes homologous to those required for the first step of carotenoid biosynthesis. Absent in all other known animal genomes, these genes appear to have been acquired by aphids and spider mites in one or several lateral gene transfer events from a fungal donor. We report the third case of fungal carotenoid biosynthesis gene homologs in an arthropod: flies from the family Cecidomyiidae, commonly known as gall midges. Using phylogenetic analyses we show that it is unlikely that lycopene cyclase/phytoene synthase and phytoene desaturase homologs were transferred singly to an ancient arthropod ancestor; instead we propose that genes were transferred independently from related fungal donors after divergence of the major arthropod lineages. We also examine variation in intron placement and copy number of the carotenoid genes that may underlie function in the midges. This trans-kingdom transfer of carotenoid genes may represent a key innovation, underlying the evolution of phytophagy and plant-galling in gall midges and facilitating their extensive diversification across plant lineages.

  3. Two Horizontally Transferred Xenobiotic Resistance Gene Clusters Associated with Detoxification of Benzoxazolinones by Fusarium Species.

    PubMed

    Glenn, Anthony E; Davis, C Britton; Gao, Minglu; Gold, Scott E; Mitchell, Trevor R; Proctor, Robert H; Stewart, Jane E; Snook, Maurice E

    2016-01-01

    Microbes encounter a broad spectrum of antimicrobial compounds in their environments and often possess metabolic strategies to detoxify such xenobiotics. We have previously shown that Fusarium verticillioides, a fungal pathogen of maize known for its production of fumonisin mycotoxins, possesses two unlinked loci, FDB1 and FDB2, necessary for detoxification of antimicrobial compounds produced by maize, including the γ-lactam 2-benzoxazolinone (BOA). In support of these earlier studies, microarray analysis of F. verticillioides exposed to BOA identified the induction of multiple genes at FDB1 and FDB2, indicating the loci consist of gene clusters. One of the FDB1 cluster genes encoded a protein having domain homology to the metallo-β-lactamase (MBL) superfamily. Deletion of this gene (MBL1) rendered F. verticillioides incapable of metabolizing BOA and thus unable to grow on BOA-amended media. Deletion of other FDB1 cluster genes, in particular AMD1 and DLH1, did not affect BOA degradation. Phylogenetic analyses and topology testing of the FDB1 and FDB2 cluster genes suggested two horizontal transfer events among fungi, one being transfer of FDB1 from Fusarium to Colletotrichum, and the second being transfer of the FDB2 cluster from Fusarium to Aspergillus. Together, the results suggest that plant-derived xenobiotics have exerted evolutionary pressure on these fungi, leading to horizontal transfer of genes that enhance fitness or virulence.

  4. Gene transfer in hepatocarcinoma cell lines: in vitro optimization of a virus-free system.

    PubMed

    Ghoumari, A M; Rixe, O; Yarovoi, S V; Zerrouqi, A; Mouawad, R; Poynard, T; Opolon, P; Khayat, D; Soubrane, C

    1996-06-01

    Many approaches exist for hepatic gene delivery, including viral vectors and non-viral vectors. In this study, we tested a panel of liposomes to transfer pAGO, a plasmid containing one copy of herpes simplex virus (HSVtk) gene, and pYED11, a plasmid containing two copies of the HSVtk gene, into a murine hepatocarcinoma cell line (Hepa 1-6) and a human hepatocarcinoma cell line (Hep-G2). The efficiency of gene delivery and expression was characterized by beta-galactosidase staining, flow cytometric analysis and quantitative lacZ activity. Different combinations of liposomes and DNA and the ratio of the concentration of liposome to DNA were tested. The efficient transfer was shown with DOTAP followed by transfectam and lipofectamine. Under these conditions, we tested the cytotoxicity of ganciclovir (GCV) exposure on Hepa 1-6 and Hep-G2 transfected separately with liposome-pAGO and liposome-pYED11 complexes. This study demonstrates the in vitro efficacy of each liposome tested to transduce the HSVtk gene into hepatocarcinoma cell lines. The transfer of two copies of the HSVtk gene rendered cells 1.5 times more sensitive to GCV than cells transduced by pAGO as compared to controls. This was achieved most efficiently by the DOTAP-pYED11 complex. Thus, pYED11 may be considered as an alternative to pAGO as a gene transfer vector.

  5. CD133-targeted gene transfer into long-term repopulating hematopoietic stem cells.

    PubMed

    Brendel, Christian; Goebel, Benjamin; Daniela, Abriss; Brugman, Martijn; Kneissl, Sabrina; Schwäble, Joachim; Kaufmann, Kerstin B; Müller-Kuller, Uta; Kunkel, Hana; Chen-Wichmann, Linping; Abel, Tobias; Serve, Hubert; Bystrykh, Leonid; Buchholz, Christian J; Grez, Manuel

    2015-01-01

    Gene therapy for hematological disorders relies on the genetic modification of CD34(+) cells, a heterogeneous cell population containing about 0.01% long-term repopulating cells. Here, we show that the lentiviral vector CD133-LV, which uses a surface marker on human primitive hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) as entry receptor, transfers genes preferentially into cells with high engraftment capability. Transduction of unstimulated CD34(+) cells with CD133-LV resulted in gene marking of cells with competitive proliferative advantage in vitro and in immunodeficient mice. The CD133-LV-transduced population contained significantly more cells with repopulating capacity than cells transduced with vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV)-LV, a lentiviral vector pseudotyped with the vesicular stomatitis virus G protein. Upon transfer of a barcode library, CD133-LV-transduced cells sustained gene marking in vivo for a prolonged period of time with a 6.7-fold higher recovery of barcodes compared to transduced control cells. Moreover, CD133-LV-transduced cells were capable of repopulating secondary recipients. Lastly, we show that this targeting strategy can be used for transfer of a therapeutic gene into CD34(+) cells obtained from patients suffering of X-linked chronic granulomatous disease. In conclusion, direct gene transfer into CD133(+) cells allows for sustained long-term engraftment of gene corrected cells.

  6. Optimizing A Lipocomplex-Based Gene Transfer Method into HeLa Cell Line

    PubMed Central

    Asgharian, Alimohammad; Banan, Mehdi; Najmabadi, Hossein

    2014-01-01

    One of the most significant steps in gene expression studies is transferring genes into cell cultures. Despite there are different methods for gene delivery such as viral and non-viral producers, some cationic lipid reagents have recently developed to transfect into mam- malian cell lines. The main aim of this study was optimizing and improving lipocomplex based transient transfection procedures into HeLa cell line which is being used widely as a typical cell in biological studies. This study was an experimental research. In this work, pCMV β-Gal DNA plasmid was used as a reporter DNA for determining the rate of gene transfection into HeLa cells. To accomplish the highest gene delivery into HeLa cells, optimizing experiments were carried out in different volumes of FuGENE-HD, LipofectamineTM2000 and X-tremeGENE. Also, we investigated tranasfection efficiency in presence of various cell densities of HeLa cells. Then, transfection efficiency and cell toxicity were measured by beta gal staining and trypan blue methods, respectively. Using FuGENE-HD in volume of 4µl along with 105 HeLa cells, transfection efficiency was higher (43.66 ± 1.52%) in comparison with the cationic lipids LipofectamineTM2000 and X-tremeGENE. In addition, the rate of cell toxicity in presence of FuGENE-HD was less than 5%. In summary, the cationic lipid FuGENE-HD indicates a suitable potential to transfer DNA into HeLa cells and it can be an efficient reagent for gene delivery for HeLa cells in vitro. Moreover, it is worth designing and optimizing gene transfer experiments for other cell lines with FuGENE-HD due to its low toxicity and high efficiency. PMID:24381863

  7. Optimizing A Lipocomplex-Based Gene Transfer Method into HeLa Cell Line.

    PubMed

    Asgharian, Alimohammad; Banan, Mehdi; Najmabadi, Hossein

    2014-01-01

    One of the most significant steps in gene expression studies is transferring genes into cell cultures. Despite there are different methods for gene delivery such as viral and non-viral producers, some cationic lipid reagents have recently developed to transfect into mam- malian cell lines. The main aim of this study was optimizing and improving lipocomplex based transient transfection procedures into HeLa cell line which is being used widely as a typical cell in biological studies. This study was an experimental research. In this work, pCMV β-Gal DNA plasmid was used as a reporter DNA for determining the rate of gene transfection into HeLa cells. To accomplish the highest gene delivery into HeLa cells, optimizing experiments were car- ried out in different volumes of FuGENE-HD, Lipofectamine(TM)2000 and X-tremeGENE. Also, we investigated tranasfection efficiency in presence of various cell densities of HeLa cells. Then, transfection efficiency and cell toxicity were measured by beta gal staining and trypan blue methods, respectively. Using FuGENE-HD in volume of 4µl along with 10(5) HeLa cells, transfection efficiency was higher (43.66 ± 1.52%) in comparison with the cationic lipids Lipofectamine(TM)2000 and X-tremeGENE. In addition, the rate of cell toxicity in presence of FuGENE-HD was less than 5%. In summary, the cationic lipid FuGENE-HD indicates a suitable potential to transfer DNA into HeLa cells and it can be an efficient reagent for gene delivery for HeLa cells in vitro. Moreover, it is worth designing and optimizing gene transfer experiments for other cell lines with FuGENE-HD due to its low toxicity and high efficiency.

  8. Dopamine receptor genes: new tools for molecular psychiatry.

    PubMed Central

    Niznik, H B; Van Tol, H H

    1992-01-01

    For over a decade it has been generally assumed that all the pharmacological and biochemical actions of dopamine within the central nervous system and periphery were mediated by two distinct dopamine receptors. These receptors, termed D1 and D2, were defined as those coupled to the stimulation or inhibition of adenylate cyclase, respectively, and by their selectivity and avidity for various drugs and compounds. The concept that two dopamine receptors were sufficient to account for all the effects mediated by dopamine was an oversimplification. Recent molecular biological studies have identified five distinct genes which encode at least eight functional dopamine receptors. The members of the expanded dopamine receptor family, however, can still be codifed by way of the original D1 and D2 receptor dichotomy. These include two genes encoding dopamine D1-like receptors (D1 [D1A]/D5 [D1B]) and three genes encoding D2-like receptors (D2/D3/D4). We review here our recent work on the cloning and characterization of some of the members of the dopamine receptor gene family (D1, D2, D4, D5), their relationship to neuropsychiatric disorders and their potential role in antipsychotic drug action. Images Fig. 1 PMID:1450188

  9. Using new genetic tools to identify potato resistance genes

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Plant diseases present a burden to agriculture through yield losses due to plant stress, costs associated with disease control, and efforts to detect infections and limit disease epidemics. Plant breeders are interested in the identification and incorporation of simply inherited genes that confer ro...

  10. Witnessing Genome Evolution: Experimental Reconstruction of Endosymbiotic and Horizontal Gene Transfer.

    PubMed

    Bock, Ralph

    2017-08-28

    Present day mitochondria and plastids (chloroplasts) evolved from formerly free-living bacteria that were acquired through endosymbiosis more than a billion years ago. Conversion of the bacterial endosymbionts into cell organelles involved the massive translocation of genetic material from the organellar genomes to the nucleus. The development of transformation technologies for organellar genomes has made it possible to reconstruct this endosymbiotic gene transfer in laboratory experiments and study the mechanisms involved. Recently, the horizontal transfer of genetic information between organisms has also become amenable to experimental investigation. It led to the discovery of horizontal genome transfer as an asexual process generating new species and new combinations of nuclear and organellar genomes. This review describes experimental approaches towards studying endosymbiotic and horizontal gene transfer processes, discusses the new knowledge gained from these approaches about both the evolutionary significance of gene transfer and the underlying molecular mechanisms, and highlights exciting possibilities to exploit gene and genome transfer in biotechnology and synthetic biology. Expected final online publication date for the Annual Review of Genetics Volume 51 is November 23, 2017. Please see http://www.annualreviews.org/page/journal/pubdates for revised estimates.

  11. Horizontal transfer of archaeal genes into the deinococcaceae: detection by molecular and computer-based approaches

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Olendzenski, L.; Liu, L.; Zhaxybayeva, O.; Murphey, R.; Shin, D. G.; Gogarten, J. P.

    2000-01-01

    Members of the Deinococcaceae (e.g., Thermus, Meiothermus, Deinococcus) contain A/V-ATPases typically found in Archaea or Eukaryotes which were probably acquired by horizontal gene transfer. Two methods were used to quantify the extent to which archaeal or eukaryotic genes have been acquired by this lineage. Screening of a Meiothermus ruber library with probes made against Thermoplasma acidophilum DNA yielded a number of clones which hybridized more strongly than background. One of these contained the prolyl tRNA synthetase (RS) gene. Phylogenetic analysis shows the M. ruber and D. radiodurans prolyl RS to be more closely related to archaeal and eukaryal forms of this gene than to the typical bacterial type. Using a bioinformatics approach, putative open reading frames (ORFs) from the prerelease version of the D. radiodurans genome were screened for genes more closely related to archaeal or eukaryotic genes. Putative ORFs were searched against representative genomes from each of the three domains using automated BLAST. ORFs showing the highest matches against archaeal and eukaryotic genes were collected and ranked. Among the top-ranked hits were the A/V-ATPase catalytic and noncatalytic subunits and the prolyl RS genes. Using phylogenetic methods, ORFs were analyzed and trees assessed for evidence of horizontal gene transfer. Of the 45 genes examined, 20 showed topologies in which D. radiodurans homologues clearly group with eukaryotic or archaeal homologues, and 17 additional trees were found to show probable evidence of horizontal gene transfer. Compared to the total number of ORFs in the genome, those that can be identified as having been acquired from Archaea or Eukaryotes are relatively few (approximately 1%), suggesting that interdomain transfer is rare.

  12. Horizontal transfer of archaeal genes into the deinococcaceae: detection by molecular and computer-based approaches

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Olendzenski, L.; Liu, L.; Zhaxybayeva, O.; Murphey, R.; Shin, D. G.; Gogarten, J. P.

    2000-01-01

    Members of the Deinococcaceae (e.g., Thermus, Meiothermus, Deinococcus) contain A/V-ATPases typically found in Archaea or Eukaryotes which were probably acquired by horizontal gene transfer. Two methods were used to quantify the extent to which archaeal or eukaryotic genes have been acquired by this lineage. Screening of a Meiothermus ruber library with probes made against Thermoplasma acidophilum DNA yielded a number of clones which hybridized more strongly than background. One of these contained the prolyl tRNA synthetase (RS) gene. Phylogenetic analysis shows the M. ruber and D. radiodurans prolyl RS to be more closely related to archaeal and eukaryal forms of this gene than to the typical bacterial type. Using a bioinformatics approach, putative open reading frames (ORFs) from the prerelease version of the D. radiodurans genome were screened for genes more closely related to archaeal or eukaryotic genes. Putative ORFs were searched against representative genomes from each of the three domains using automated BLAST. ORFs showing the highest matches against archaeal and eukaryotic genes were collected and ranked. Among the top-ranked hits were the A/V-ATPase catalytic and noncatalytic subunits and the prolyl RS genes. Using phylogenetic methods, ORFs were analyzed and trees assessed for evidence of horizontal gene transfer. Of the 45 genes examined, 20 showed topologies in which D. radiodurans homologues clearly group with eukaryotic or archaeal homologues, and 17 additional trees were found to show probable evidence of horizontal gene transfer. Compared to the total number of ORFs in the genome, those that can be identified as having been acquired from Archaea or Eukaryotes are relatively few (approximately 1%), suggesting that interdomain transfer is rare.

  13. Transfer of tetracycline resistance genes with aggregation substance in food-borne Enterococcus faecalis.

    PubMed

    Choi, Jong-Mi; Woo, Gun-Jo

    2015-04-01

    Enterococcus faecalis has the ability to conjugate with the aid of aggregation substance (AS) and inducible sex pheromones to exchange genetic elements in food matrix. To evaluate the food safety condition and the transferable factor, 250 tetracycline-resistant food-borne E. faecalis were collected in Korea. Among the isolates, a majority of tetracycline-resistant isolates (49.6 %) harbored both the tet(M) and tet(L) genes together, followed by tet(M) (19.6 %), and tet(L) (6.8 %) alone. Also, we found the combination of tet(L)/tet(M)/tet(O) or tet(M)/tet(O). We identified two tet(S) genes including the isolate carrying tet(M) + tet(S) genes. Additionally, most E. faecalis were positive for cpd and ccf (both 96.8 %) followed by cob (57.2 %). Through mating experiments, we confirmed E. faecalis possessing the Int-Tn gene and/or any AS gene successfully transferred tet genes to JH2-2 E. faecalis, whereas neither E. faecalis carrying AS genes nor the Int-Tn gene showed the conjugation. Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis results supported a distinct pattern, implying transfer of genetic information. Our study revealed a high occurrence of tetracycline resistance genes in E. faecalis from various foods. The widespread dissemination of tetracycline resistance genes would be promoted to transfer tetracycline resistance genes by pheromone-mediated conjugation systems.

  14. Security Transition Program Office (STPO), technology transfer of the STPO process, tools, and techniques

    SciTech Connect

    Hauth, J.T.; Forslund, C.R.J.; Underwood, J.A.

    1994-09-01

    In 1990, with the transition from a defense mission to environmental restoration, the U.S. Department of Energy`s (DOE`s) Hanford Site began a significant effort to diagnose, redesign, and implement new safeguards and security (SAS) processes. In 1992 the Security Transition Program Office (STPO) was formed to address the sweeping changes that were being identified. Comprised of SAS and other contractor staff with extensive experience and supported by staff experienced in organizational analysis and work process redesign, STPO undertook a series of tasks designed to make fundamental changes to SAS processes throughout the Hanford Site. The goal of STPO is to align the SAS work and organization with the new Site mission. This report describes the key strategy, tools, methods, and techniques used by STPO to change SAS processes at Hanford. A particular focus of this review is transferring STPO`s experience to other DOE sites and federal agency efforts: that is, to extract, analyze, and provide a critical review of the approach, tools, and techniques used by STPO that will be useful to other DOE sites and national laboratories in transitioning from a defense production mode to environmental restoration and other missions. In particular, what lessons does STPO provide as a pilot study or model for implementing change in other transition activities throughout the DOE complex? More broadly, what theoretical and practical contributions do DOE transition efforts, such as STPO, provide to federal agency streamlining efforts and attempts to {open_quotes}reinvent{close_quotes} government enterprises in the public sector? The approach used by STPO should provide valuable information to those examining their own processes in light of new mission requirements.

  15. Effects of local and systemic viral interleukin-10 gene transfer on corneal allograft survival.

    PubMed

    Gong, N; Pleyer, U; Volk, H-D; Ritter, T

    2007-03-01

    In this study, we explored the immunomodulatory effects of viral interleukin (IL) IL-10 after ex vivo and in vivo gene transfer in experimental corneal transplantation. Wistar-Furth rats were used as donors and major histocompatibility complex class I/II-disparate Lewis rats served as recipients. For ex vivo gene therapy donor corneas were either transfected with liposome/vIL-10 plasmid DNA mixtures or transduced with a vIL-10 expressing adenovirus vector (AdvIL-10). For in vivo studies, recipients were treated with AdvIL-10 intraperitoneally 1 day before transplantation. Graft survival was analysed using the Kaplan-Meier survival method. To monitor the efficacy of the therapy messenger RNA (mRNA) cytokine expression profiles in grafts and draining lymph nodes were analysed by quantitative real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction. Moreover, anti-adenovirus immunity was also investigated. Neither ex vivo liposome-mediated vIL-10 gene transfer nor ex vivo AdvIL-10 gene transfer led to prolonged corneal allograft survival. In contrast, corneal allograft survival was significantly prolonged in animals receiving systemic AdvIL-10 gene transfer. Moreover, only systemic vIL-10 gene therapy modulated the cytokine mRNA expression profile in draining lymph nodes. Interestingly, systemic AdvIL-10 gene transfer could not inhibit the generation of anti-adenovirus antibodies. Our data indicate systemic expression of the vIL-10 gene is required to modulate the cytokine expression profile in the draining lymph nodes, which might be a pre-requisite for the success of cytokine gene therapy.

  16. Plant expansins in bacteria and fungi: evolution by horizontal gene transfer and independent domain fusion.

    PubMed

    Nikolaidis, Nikolas; Doran, Nicole; Cosgrove, Daniel J

    2014-02-01

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) has been described as a common mechanism of transferring genetic material between prokaryotes, whereas genetic transfers from eukaryotes to prokaryotes have been rarely documented. Here we report a rare case of HGT in which plant expansin genes that code for plant cell-wall loosening proteins were transferred from plants to bacteria, fungi, and amoebozoa. In several cases, the species in which the expansin gene was found is either in intimate association with plants or is a known plant pathogen. Our analyses suggest that at least two independent genetic transfers occurred from plants to bacteria and fungi. These events were followed by multiple HGT events within bacteria and fungi. We have also observed that in bacteria expansin genes have been independently fused to DNA fragments that code for an endoglucanase domain or for a carbohydrate binding module, pointing to functional convergence at the molecular level. Furthermore, the functional similarities between microbial expansins and their plant xenologs suggest that these proteins mediate microbial-plant interactions by altering the plant cell wall and therefore may provide adaptive advantages to these species. The evolution of these nonplant expansins represents a unique case in which bacteria and fungi have found innovative and adaptive ways to interact with and infect plants by acquiring genes from their host. This evolutionary paradigm suggests that despite their low frequency such HGT events may have significantly contributed to the evolution of prokaryotic and eukaryotic species.

  17. Innate Functions of Immunoglobulin M Lessen Liver Gene Transfer with Helper-Dependent Adenovirus

    PubMed Central

    Unzu, Carmen; Morales-Kastresana, Aizea; Sampedro, Ana; Serrano-Mendioroz, Irantzu; Azpilikueta, Arantza; Ochoa, María Carmen; Dubrot, Juan; Martínez-Ansó, Eduardo

    2014-01-01

    The immune system poses obstacles to viral vectors, even in the first administration to preimmunized hosts. We have observed that the livers of B cell-deficient mice were more effectively transduced by a helper-dependent adenovirus serotype-5 (HDA) vector than those of WT mice. This effect was T-cell independent as shown in athymic mice. Passive transfer of the serum from adenovirus-naïve WT to Rag1KO mice resulted in a reduction in gene transfer that was traced to IgM purified from serum of adenovirus-naïve mice. To ascribe the gene transfer inhibition activity to either adenoviral antigen-specific or antigen-unspecific functions of IgM, we used a monoclonal IgM antibody of unrelated specificity. Both the polyclonal and the irrelevant monoclonal IgM inhibited gene transfer by the HDA vector to either cultured hepatocellular carcinoma cells or to the liver of mice in vivo. Adsorption of polyclonal or monoclonal IgMs to viral capsids was revealed by ELISAs on adenovirus-coated plates. These observations indicate the existence of an inborn IgM mechanism deployed against a prevalent virus to reduce early post-infection viremia. In conclusion, innate IgM binding to adenovirus serotype-5 capsids restrains gene-transfer and offers a mechanism to be targeted for optimization of vector dosage in gene therapy with HDA vectors. PMID:24465560

  18. Investigation of horizontal gene transfer in poplar/Amanita muscaria ectomycorrhizas.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Chi; Hampp, Rüdiger; Nehls, Uwe

    2005-01-01

    Fine roots of forest trees form together with certain soil fungi symbiotic structures (ectomycorrhizas), where fungal hyphae are in intimate contact with plant cells. Due to root cell degeneration, plant DNA is released and could be taken up by the fungus. The possibility that horizontal gene transfer might result in a risk for the environment should be evaluated before a massive release of genetically engineered trees into nature occurs, even though only a few convincing examples of horizontal gene transfer are known. Transgenic poplars containing a construct of the Streptomyces hygroscopicus bar gene under the control of the Cochliobolus heterostrophus GPD (glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase) promoter were generated by Agrobacterium-mediated transformation. The functionality of this construct in the ectomycorrhizal model fungus Amanita muscaria was previously verified by protoplast-based fungal transformation. 35,000 ectomycorrhizas, formed between transgenic poplars and non-transgenic A. muscaria hyphae, were isolated and transferred to selective agar plates. Putative herbicide-resistant fungal colonies were obtained after the first round of selection. However, none of these colonies survived a transfer onto fresh selection medium, nor did they contain the bar gene, indicating that no horizontal gene transfer from poplar to A. muscaria occurred during symbiosis under axenic conditions. However, since ectomycorrhizas are associated under natural conditions with viruses, bacteria and other fungi, these additional associations should be evaluated in future.

  19. AAV8-mediated hepatic gene transfer in infant rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta).

    PubMed

    Wang, Lili; Bell, Peter; Lin, Jianping; Calcedo, Roberto; Tarantal, Alice F; Wilson, James M

    2011-11-01

    Many genetic metabolic diseases manifest in infancy, therefore, it is important to develop effective treatments that could be implemented at this time. Adeno-associated virus serotype 8 (AAV8) gene transfer has been studied in neonatal mouse, cat, and dog models and shown some efficacy with a single hepatic injection at birth. AAV8-mediated liver gene transfer has also generated sustained therapeutic effects in feline and canine models of lysosomal storage disorders. In these models, delaying the age of vector treatment increased gene transfer stability. The growth rate of infant nonhuman primates is more similar to the growth trajectory of humans, thus infant monkeys provide an excellent model to study AAV gene transfer efficiency, stability, and safety. In this study, we report for the first time that AAV8-mediated hepatic gene transfer in infant monkeys is safe and efficient but less stable when compared to adolescent animals. Infant monkeys administered AAV8 intravenously at 1 week postnatal age achieved up to 98% transduction of hepatocytes within 7 days of injection; however, there was significant dilution of genomes and loss of transgene expression 35 days postadministration. Delaying the injection to 1 month postnatal age did not improve stability of transduction but decreased the antibody response to AAV8 capsid.

  20. Innate functions of immunoglobulin M lessen liver gene transfer with helper-dependent adenovirus.

    PubMed

    Unzu, Carmen; Melero, Ignacio; Morales-Kastresana, Aizea; Sampedro, Ana; Serrano-Mendioroz, Irantzu; Azpilikueta, Arantza; Ochoa, María Carmen; Dubrot, Juan; Martínez-Ansó, Eduardo; Fontanellas, Antonio

    2014-01-01

    The immune system poses obstacles to viral vectors, even in the first administration to preimmunized hosts. We have observed that the livers of B cell-deficient mice were more effectively transduced by a helper-dependent adenovirus serotype-5 (HDA) vector than those of WT mice. This effect was T-cell independent as shown in athymic mice. Passive transfer of the serum from adenovirus-naïve WT to Rag1KO mice resulted in a reduction in gene transfer that was traced to IgM purified from serum of adenovirus-naïve mice. To ascribe the gene transfer inhibition activity to either adenoviral antigen-specific or antigen-unspecific functions of IgM, we used a monoclonal IgM antibody of unrelated specificity. Both the polyclonal and the irrelevant monoclonal IgM inhibited gene transfer by the HDA vector to either cultured hepatocellular carcinoma cells or to the liver of mice in vivo. Adsorption of polyclonal or monoclonal IgMs to viral capsids was revealed by ELISAs on adenovirus-coated plates. These observations indicate the existence of an inborn IgM mechanism deployed against a prevalent virus to reduce early post-infection viremia. In conclusion, innate IgM binding to adenovirus serotype-5 capsids restrains gene-transfer and offers a mechanism to be targeted for optimization of vector dosage in gene therapy with HDA vectors.

  1. Generation of hypoxanthine phosphoribosyltransferase gene knockout rabbits by homologous recombination and gene trapping through somatic cell nuclear transfer.

    PubMed

    Yin, Mingru; Jiang, Weihua; Fang, Zhenfu; Kong, Pengcheng; Xing, Fengying; Li, Yao; Chen, Xuejin; Li, Shangang

    2015-11-02

    The rabbit is a common animal model that has been employed in studies on various human disorders, and the generation of genetically modified rabbit lines is highly desirable. Female rabbits have been successfully cloned from cumulus cells, and the somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) technology is well established. The present study generated hypoxanthine phosphoribosyltransferase (HPRT) gene knockout rabbits using recombinant adeno-associated virus-mediated homologous recombination and SCNT. Gene trap strategies were employed to enhance the gene targeting rates. The male and female gene knockout fibroblast cell lines were derived by different strategies. When male HPRT knockout cells were used for SCNT, no live rabbits were obtained. However, when female HPRT(+/-) cells were used for SCNT, live, healthy rabbits were generated. The cloned HPRT(+/-) rabbits were fertile at maturity. We demonstrate a new technique to produce gene-targeted rabbits. This approach may also be used in the genetic manipulation of different genes or in other species.

  2. Direct Gene Transfer into Plant Mature Seeds via Electroporation After Vacuum Treatment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hagio, Takashi

    A number of direct gene transfer methods have been used successfully in plant genetic engineering, providing powerful tools to investigate fundamental and applied problems in plant biology (Chowrira et al., 1996; D'halluin et al., 1992; Morandini and Salamini, 2003; Rakoczy-Trojanowska, 2002; Songstad et al., 1995). In cereals, several methods have been found to be suitable for obtaining transgenic plant; these include bombardment of scutellum (Hagio et al., 1995) and inflorescence cultures (He et al., 2001), and silicon carbide fiber-mediated DNA delivery (Asano et al., 1991) and Agrobacterium tumefaciens transformation (Potrykus, 1990). Electroporation of cereal protoplasts also has proved successful but it involves prolonged cell treatments and generally is limited by the difficulties of regeneration from cereal protoplast cultures (Fromm et al., 1987). Many laboratories worldwide are now using Agrobacterium as a vehicle for routine production of transgenic crop plants. The primary application of the particle system (Klein et al., 1987) has been for transformation of species recalcitrant to conventional Agrobacterium (Binns, 1990) or protoplast methods. But these conventional methods can be applied to the species and varieties that are amenable to tissue culture (Machii et al., 1998). Mature seeds are readily available and free from the seasonal limits that immature embryo, inflorescence, and anther have. This method enables us to produce transgenic plants without time-consuming tissue culture process.

  3. Integrative gene transfer in the truffle Tuber borchii by Agrobacterium tumefaciens-mediated transformation.

    PubMed

    Brenna, Andrea; Montanini, Barbara; Muggiano, Eleonora; Proietto, Marco; Filetici, Patrizia; Ottonello, Simone; Ballario, Paola

    2014-01-01

    Agrobacterium tumefaciens-mediated transformation is a powerful tool for reverse genetics and functional genomic analysis in a wide variety of plants and fungi. Tuber spp. are ecologically important and gastronomically prized fungi ("truffles") with a cryptic life cycle, a subterranean habitat and a symbiotic, but also facultative saprophytic lifestyle. The genome of a representative member of this group of fungi has recently been sequenced. However, because of their poor genetic tractability, including transformation, truffles have so far eluded in-depth functional genomic investigations. Here we report that A. tumefaciens can infect Tuber borchii mycelia, thereby conveying its transfer DNA with the production of stably integrated transformants. We constructed two new binary plasmids (pABr1 and pABr3) and tested them as improved transformation vectors using the green fluorescent protein as reporter gene and hygromycin phosphotransferase as selection marker. Transformants were stable for at least 12 months of in vitro culture propagation and, as revealed by TAIL- PCR analysis, integration sites appear to be heterogeneous, with a preference for repeat element-containing genome sites.

  4. Transferring Sclerotinia Resistance Genes from Wild Helianthus into Cultivated Sunflower

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    To enhance resistance to Sclerotinia head and stalk rot in cultivated sunflower, mining and introgression of Sclerotinia resistance genes from diverse wild Helianthus accessions into cultivated sunflower has been conducted using backcrossing method since 2004. During the last four years, numerous in...

  5. Flow cytometry analysis of adenosine deaminase (ADA) expression: a simple and reliable tool for the assessment of ADA-deficient patients before and after gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Otsu, Makoto; Hershfield, Michael S; Tuschong, Laura M; Muul, Linda M; Onodera, Masafumi; Ariga, Tadashi; Sakiyama, Yukio; Candotti, Fabio

    2002-02-10

    Clinical gene therapy trials for adenosine deaminase (ADA) deficiency have shown limited success of corrective gene transfer into autologous T lymphocytes and CD34(+) cells. In these trials, the levels of gene transduction and expression in hematopoietic cells have been assessed by DNA- or RNA-based assays and measurement of ADA enzyme activity. Although informative, these methods are rarely applied to clonal analysis. The results of these assays therefore provide best estimates of transduction efficiency and gene expression in bulk populations based on the assumption that gene transfer and expression are uniformly distributed among transduced cells. As a useful additional tool for evaluation of ADA gene expression, we have developed a flow cytometry (fluorescence-activated cell sorting, FACS) assay capable of estimating the levels of intracellular ADA on a single-cell basis. We validated this technique with T cell lines and peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) from ADA-deficient patients that showed severely reduced levels of ADA expression (ADA-dull) by FACS and Western blot analyses. After retrovirus-mediated ADA gene transfer, these cells showed clearly distinguishable populations exhibiting ADA expression (ADA-bright), thus allowing estimation of transduction efficiency. By mixing ADA-deficient and normal cells and using enzymatic amplification, we determined that our staining procedure could detect as little as 5% ADA-bright cells. This technique, therefore, will be useful to quickly assess the expression of ADA in hematopoietic cells of severe combined immunodeficient patients and represents an important tool for the follow-up of patients treated in clinical gene transfer protocols.

  6. Bone marrow extracellular matrix molecules improve gene transfer into human hematopoietic cells via retroviral vectors.

    PubMed

    Moritz, T; Patel, V P; Williams, D A

    1994-04-01

    Direct contact between hematopoietic cells and viral packaging cell lines or other sources of stroma has been shown to increase the efficiency of retroviral-mediated gene transfer into these target cells compared with infection with viral supernatant. We have investigated the role of defined bone marrow extracellular matrix molecules (ECM) in this phenomenon. Here we report that infection of cells adhering to the carboxy-terminal 30/35-kD fragment of the fibronectin molecule (30/35 FN), which contains the alternatively spliced CS-1 cell adhesion domain, significantly increases gene transfer into hematopoietic cells. Two retroviral vectors differing in recombinant viral titer were used. Gene transfer into committed progenitor cells and long-term culture-initiating cells, an in vitro assay for human stem cells, was significantly increased when the cells were infected while adherent to 30/35 FN-coated plates compared with cells infected on BSA-coated control plates or plates coated with other bone marrow ECM molecules. Although gene transfer into committed progenitor cells and to a lesser degree into long-term culture-initiating cells was increased on intact fibronectin as well, increased gene transfer efficiency into hematopoietic cells on 30/35 FN was dependent on CS-1 sequence since infection on a similar FN fragment lacking CS-1 (42 FN) was suboptimal. 30/35 FN has previously been shown by our laboratory and other investigators to mediate adhesion of primitive murine and human hematopoietic stem cells to the hematopoietic microenvironment. Additional studies showed that neither soluble 30/35 FN nor nonspecific binding of hematopoietic cells to poly-L-lysine-coated plates had any appreciable effect on the infection efficiency of these cells. Our findings indicate that hematopoietic stem cell adhesion to specific ECM molecules alters retroviral infection efficiency. These findings should aid in the design of gene transfer protocols using hematopoietic progenitor and

  7. Refinement of Tools for Targeted Gene Expression in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Pfeiffer, Barret D.; Ngo, Teri-T B.; Hibbard, Karen L.; Murphy, Christine; Jenett, Arnim; Truman, James W.; Rubin, Gerald M.

    2010-01-01

    A wide variety of biological experiments rely on the ability to express an exogenous gene in a transgenic animal at a defined level and in a spatially and temporally controlled pattern. We describe major improvements of the methods available for achieving this objective in Drosophila melanogaster. We have systematically varied core promoters, UTRs, operator sequences, and transcriptional activating domains used to direct gene expression with the GAL4, LexA, and Split GAL4 transcription factors and the GAL80 transcriptional repressor. The use of site-specific integration allowed us to make quantitative comparisons between different constructs inserted at the same genomic location. We also characterized a set of PhiC31 integration sites for their ability to support transgene expression of both drivers and responders in the nervous system. The increased strength and reliability of these optimized reagents overcome many of the previous limitations of these methods and will facilitate genetic manipulations of greater complexity and sophistication. PMID:20697123

  8. Development of the Transferable Learning Orientations Tool: Providing Metacognitive Opportunities and Meaningful Feedback for Students and Instructors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Simper, Natalie; Kaupp, James; Frank, Brian; Scott, Jill

    2016-01-01

    This study encapsulates the development and testing of the Transferable Learning Orientations (TLO) tool. It is a triangulated measure built on select scales from the Motivated Strategies for Learning Questionnaire (MSLQ), together with multiple-choice items adapted from the lifelong learning VALUE rubric, and an open-ended response for each…

  9. Development of the Transferable Learning Orientations Tool: Providing Metacognitive Opportunities and Meaningful Feedback for Students and Instructors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Simper, Natalie; Kaupp, James; Frank, Brian; Scott, Jill

    2016-01-01

    This study encapsulates the development and testing of the Transferable Learning Orientations (TLO) tool. It is a triangulated measure built on select scales from the Motivated Strategies for Learning Questionnaire (MSLQ), together with multiple-choice items adapted from the lifelong learning VALUE rubric, and an open-ended response for each…

  10. Tumor specific ultrasound enhanced gene transfer in vivo with novel liposomal bubbles.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Ryo; Takizawa, Tomoko; Negishi, Yoichi; Utoguchi, Naoki; Sawamura, Kaori; Tanaka, Kumiko; Namai, Eisuke; Oda, Yusuke; Matsumura, Yasuhiro; Maruyama, Kazuo

    2008-01-22

    Bubble liposomes (liposomes which entrap an ultrasound imaging gas) may constitute a unique system for delivering various molecules efficiently into mammalian cells in vitro. In this study, Bubble liposomes were compared with cationic lipid (CL)-DNA complexes as potential gene delivery carriers into tumor in vivo. The delivery of genes by Bubble liposomes depended on the intensity of the applied ultrasound. Transfection efficiency plateaued at 0.7 W/cm(2) ultrasound intensity. Bubble liposomes efficiently transferred genes into cultured cells even when the cells were exposed to ultrasound for only 1 s. In addition, Bubble liposomes could introduce the luciferase gene more effectively than CL-DNA complexes into mouse ascites tumor cells and solid tumor tissue. We conclude that the combination of Bubble liposomes and ultrasound is a minimally-invasive and tumor specific gene transfer method in vivo.

  11. Massive gene transfer and extensive RNA editing of a symbiotic dinoflagellate plastid genome.

    PubMed

    Mungpakdee, Sutada; Shinzato, Chuya; Takeuchi, Takeshi; Kawashima, Takeshi; Koyanagi, Ryo; Hisata, Kanako; Tanaka, Makiko; Goto, Hiroki; Fujie, Manabu; Lin, Senjie; Satoh, Nori; Shoguchi, Eiichi

    2014-05-31

    Genome sequencing of Symbiodinium minutum revealed that 95 of 109 plastid-associated genes have been transferred to the nuclear genome and subsequently expanded by gene duplication. Only 14 genes remain in plastids and occur as DNA minicircles. Each minicircle (1.8-3.3 kb) contains one gene and a conserved noncoding region containing putative promoters and RNA-binding sites. Nine types of RNA editing, including a novel G/U type, were discovered in minicircle transcripts but not in genes transferred to the nucleus. In contrast to DNA editing sites in dinoflagellate mitochondria, which tend to be highly conserved across all taxa, editing sites employed in DNA minicircles are highly variable from species to species. Editing is crucial for core photosystem protein function. It restores evolutionarily conserved amino acids and increases peptidyl hydropathy. It also increases protein plasticity necessary to initiate photosystem complex assembly.

  12. Massive Gene Transfer and Extensive RNA Editing of a Symbiotic Dinoflagellate Plastid Genome

    PubMed Central

    Mungpakdee, Sutada; Shinzato, Chuya; Takeuchi, Takeshi; Kawashima, Takeshi; Koyanagi, Ryo; Hisata, Kanako; Tanaka, Makiko; Goto, Hiroki; Fujie, Manabu; Lin, Senjie; Satoh, Nori; Shoguchi, Eiichi

    2014-01-01

    Genome sequencing of Symbiodinium minutum revealed that 95 of 109 plastid-associated genes have been transferred to the nuclear genome and subsequently expanded by gene duplication. Only 14 genes remain in plastids and occur as DNA minicircles. Each minicircle (1.8–3.3 kb) contains one gene and a conserved noncoding region containing putative promoters and RNA-binding sites. Nine types of RNA editing, including a novel G/U type, were discovered in minicircle transcripts but not in genes transferred to the nucleus. In contrast to DNA editing sites in dinoflagellate mitochondria, which tend to be highly conserved across all taxa, editing sites employed in DNA minicircles are highly variable from species to species. Editing is crucial for core photosystem protein function. It restores evolutionarily conserved amino acids and increases peptidyl hydropathy. It also increases protein plasticity necessary to initiate photosystem complex assembly. PMID:24881086

  13. Mucus altering agents as adjuncts for nonviral gene transfer to airway epithelium.

    PubMed

    Ferrari, S; Kitson, C; Farley, R; Steel, R; Marriott, C; Parkins, D A; Scarpa, M; Wainwright, B; Evans, M J; Colledge, W H; Geddes, D M; Alton, E W

    2001-09-01

    Nonviral vectors have been shown to be a safe and valid alternative to recombinant viruses for gene therapy of cystic fibrosis (CF). Nevertheless, gene transfer efficiency needs to be increased before clinical efficacy is likely in man. One barrier to increased efficacy is normal airway mucus. Using an ex vivo model of sheep tracheal epithelium, we show that this barrier can, in part, be overcome by treatment with the mucolytic agents, Nacystelyn or N-acetylcysteine using either a cationic lipid or a cationic polymer as the gene transfer agent. Further, in vivo application of either Nacystelyn or the anticholinergic glycopyrrolate, both clinically used agents, resulted in increased reporter gene expression in the mouse lung, but no significant correction of the bioelectric defect in CF null mice. These results, whilst unlikely to be sufficient in themselves to achieve clinically relevant gene therapy, may be a further useful step in the attainment of this goal.

  14. RefEx, a reference gene expression dataset as a web tool for the functional analysis of genes.

    PubMed

    Ono, Hiromasa; Ogasawara, Osamu; Okubo, Kosaku; Bono, Hidemasa

    2017-08-29

    Gene expression data are exponentially accumulating; thus, the functional annotation of such sequence data from metadata is urgently required. However, life scientists have difficulty utilizing the available data due to its sheer magnitude and complicated access. We have developed a web tool for browsing reference gene expression pattern of mammalian tissues and cell lines measured using different methods, which should facilitate the reuse of the precious data archived in several public databases. The web tool is called Reference Expression dataset (RefEx), and RefEx allows users to search by the gene name, various types of IDs, chromosomal regions in genetic maps, gene family based on InterPro, gene expression patterns, or biological categories based on Gene Ontology. RefEx also provides information about genes with tissue-specific expression, and the relative gene expression values are shown as choropleth maps on 3D human body images from BodyParts3D. Combined with the newly incorporated Functional Annotation of Mammals (FANTOM) dataset, RefEx provides insight regarding the functional interpretation of unfamiliar genes. RefEx is publicly available at http://refex.dbcls.jp/.

  15. Exploration of new perspectives and limitations in Agrobacterium mediated gene transfer technology. Progress report, [June 1, 1992-- May 31, 1994

    SciTech Connect

    Marton, L.

    1994-12-31

    This report describes progress aimed at constructing gene-transfer technology for Nicotiana plumbaginifolia. Most actual effort as described herein has so far been directed at exploring new perspectives and limitations in Agrobacterium mediated gene transfer. Accomplishments are described using a core homologous gene targeting vector.

  16. Förster resonance energy transfer as a tool to study photoreceptor biology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hovan, Stephanie C.; Howell, Scott; Park, Paul S.-H.

    2010-11-01

    Vision is initiated in photoreceptor cells of the retina by a set of biochemical events called phototransduction. These events occur via coordinated dynamic processes that include changes in secondary messenger concentrations, conformational changes and post-translational modifications of signaling proteins, and protein-protein interactions between signaling partners. A complete description of the orchestration of these dynamic processes is still unavailable. Described in this work is the first step in the development of tools combining fluorescent protein technology, Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET), and transgenic animals that have the potential to reveal important molecular insights about the dynamic processes occurring in photoreceptor cells. We characterize the fluorescent proteins SCFP3A and SYFP2 for use as a donor-acceptor pair in FRET assays, which will facilitate the visualization of dynamic processes in living cells. We also demonstrate the targeted expression of these fluorescent proteins to the rod photoreceptor cells of Xenopus laevis, and describe a general method for detecting FRET in these cells. The general approaches described here can address numerous types of questions related to phototransduction and photoreceptor biology by providing a platform to visualize dynamic processes in molecular detail within a native context.

  17. Indication of Horizontal DNA Gene Transfer by Extracellular Vesicles

    PubMed Central

    Speiseder, Thomas; Badbaran, Anita; Reimer, Rudolph; Indenbirken, Daniela; Grundhoff, Adam; Brunswig-Spickenheier, Bärbel; Alawi, Malik; Lange, Claudia

    2016-01-01

    The biological relevance of extracellular vesicles (EV) in intercellular communication has been well established. Thus far, proteins and RNA were described as main cargo. Here, we show that EV released from human bone marrow derived mesenchymal stromal cells (BM-hMSC) also carry high-molecular DNA in addition. Extensive EV characterization revealed this DNA mainly associated with the outer EV membrane and to a smaller degree also inside the EV. Our EV purification protocol secured that DNA is not derived from apoptotic or necrotic cells. To analyze the relevance of EV-associated DNA we lentivirally transduced Arabidopsis thaliana-DNA (A.t.-DNA) as indicator into BM-hMSC and generated EV. Using quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) techniques we detected high copy numbers of A.t.-DNA in EV. In recipient hMSC incubated with tagged EV for two weeks we identified A.t.-DNA transferred to recipient cells. Investigation of recipient cell DNA using quantitative PCR and verification of PCR-products by sequencing suggested stable integration of A.t.-DNA. In conclusion, for the first time our proof-of-principle experiments point to horizontal DNA transfer into recipient cells via EV. Based on our results we assume that eukaryotic cells are able to exchange genetic information in form of DNA extending the known cargo of EV by genomic DNA. This mechanism might be of relevance in cancer but also during cell evolution and development. PMID:27684368

  18. Lines of evidence for horizontal gene transfer of a phenazine producing operon into multiple bacterial species.