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Sample records for heme regulatory network

  1. A predictive model of the oxygen and heme regulatory network in yeast.

    PubMed

    Kundaje, Anshul; Xin, Xiantong; Lan, Changgui; Lianoglou, Steve; Zhou, Mei; Zhang, Li; Leslie, Christina

    2008-11-01

    Deciphering gene regulatory mechanisms through the analysis of high-throughput expression data is a challenging computational problem. Previous computational studies have used large expression datasets in order to resolve fine patterns of coexpression, producing clusters or modules of potentially coregulated genes. These methods typically examine promoter sequence information, such as DNA motifs or transcription factor occupancy data, in a separate step after clustering. We needed an alternative and more integrative approach to study the oxygen regulatory network in Saccharomyces cerevisiae using a small dataset of perturbation experiments. Mechanisms of oxygen sensing and regulation underlie many physiological and pathological processes, and only a handful of oxygen regulators have been identified in previous studies. We used a new machine learning algorithm called MEDUSA to uncover detailed information about the oxygen regulatory network using genome-wide expression changes in response to perturbations in the levels of oxygen, heme, Hap1, and Co2+. MEDUSA integrates mRNA expression, promoter sequence, and ChIP-chip occupancy data to learn a model that accurately predicts the differential expression of target genes in held-out data. We used a novel margin-based score to extract significant condition-specific regulators and assemble a global map of the oxygen sensing and regulatory network. This network includes both known oxygen and heme regulators, such as Hap1, Mga2, Hap4, and Upc2, as well as many new candidate regulators. MEDUSA also identified many DNA motifs that are consistent with previous experimentally identified transcription factor binding sites. Because MEDUSA's regulatory program associates regulators to target genes through their promoter sequences, we directly tested the predicted regulators for OLE1, a gene specifically induced under hypoxia, by experimental analysis of the activity of its promoter. In each case, deletion of the candidate

  2. Fur homolog regulates Porphyromonas gingivalis virulence under low-iron/heme conditions through a complex regulatory network.

    PubMed

    Ciuraszkiewicz, J; Smiga, M; Mackiewicz, P; Gmiterek, A; Bielecki, M; Olczak, M; Olczak, T

    2014-12-01

    Porphyromonas gingivalis is a key pathogen responsible for initiation and progression of chronic periodontitis. Little is known about the regulatory mechanisms of iron and heme uptake that allow P. gingivalis to express virulence factors and survive in the hostile environment of the oral cavity, so we initiated characterization of a P. gingivalis Fur homolog (PgFur). Many Fur paralogs found in microbial genomes, including Bacteroidetes, confirm that Fur proteins have a tendency to be subjected to a sub- or even neofunctionalization process. PgFur revealed extremely high sequence divergence, which could be associated with its functional dissimilarity in comparison with other Fur homologs. A fur mutant strain constructed by insertional inactivation exhibited retarded growth during the early growth phase and a significantly lower tendency to form a homotypic biofilm on abiotic surfaces. The mutant also showed significantly weaker adherence and invasion to epithelial cells and macrophages. Transcripts of many differentially regulated genes identified in the fur mutant strain were annotated as hypothetical proteins, suggesting that PgFur can play a novel role in the regulation of gene expression. Inactivation of the fur gene resulted in decreased hmuY gene expression, increased expression of other hmu components and changes in the expression of genes encoding hemagglutinins and proteases (mainly gingipains), HtrA, some extracytoplasmic sigma factors and two-component systems. Our data suggest that PgFur can influence in vivo growth and virulence, at least in part by affecting iron/heme acquisition, allowing efficient infection through a complex regulatory network.

  3. Spectroscopic Studies Reveal That the Heme Regulatory Motifs of Heme Oxygenase-2 Are Dynamically Disordered and Exhibit Redox-Dependent Interaction with Heme

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Heme oxygenase (HO) catalyzes a key step in heme homeostasis: the O2- and NADPH-cytochrome P450 reductase-dependent conversion of heme to biliverdin, Fe, and CO through a process in which the heme participates both as a prosthetic group and as a substrate. Mammals contain two isoforms of this enzyme, HO2 and HO1, which share the same α-helical fold forming the catalytic core and heme binding site, as well as a membrane spanning helix at their C-termini. However, unlike HO1, HO2 has an additional 30-residue N-terminus as well as two cysteine-proline sequences near the C-terminus that reside in heme regulatory motifs (HRMs). While the role of the additional N-terminal residues of HO2 is not yet understood, the HRMs have been proposed to reversibly form a thiol/disulfide redox switch that modulates the affinity of HO2 for ferric heme as a function of cellular redox poise. To further define the roles of the N- and C-terminal regions unique to HO2, we used multiple spectroscopic techniques to characterize these regions of the human HO2. Nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopic experiments with HO2 demonstrate that, when the HRMs are in the oxidized state (HO2O), both the extra N-terminal and the C-terminal HRM-containing regions are disordered. However, protein NMR experiments illustrate that, under reducing conditions, the C-terminal region gains some structure as the Cys residues in the HRMs undergo reduction (HO2R) and, in experiments employing a diamagnetic protoporphyrin, suggest a redox-dependent interaction between the core and the HRM domains. Further, electron nuclear double resonance and X-ray absorption spectroscopic studies demonstrate that, upon reduction of the HRMs to the sulfhydryl form, a cysteine residue from the HRM region ligates to a ferric heme. Taken together with EPR measurements, which show the appearance of a new low-spin heme signal in reduced HO2, it appears that a cysteine residue(s) in the HRMs directly interacts with a second bound heme

  4. Spectroscopic studies reveal that the heme regulatory motifs of heme oxygenase-2 are dynamically disordered and exhibit redox-dependent interaction with heme

    SciTech Connect

    Bagai, Ireena; Sarangi, Ritimukta; Fleischhacker, Angela S.; Sharma, Ajay; Hoffman, Brian M.; Zuiderweg, Erik R. P.; Ragsdale, Stephen W.

    2015-05-05

    Heme oxygenase (HO) catalyzes a key step in heme homeostasis: the O₂₋ and NADPH-cytochrome P450 reductase-dependent conversion of heme to biliverdin, Fe, and CO through a process in which the heme participates both as a prosthetic group and as a substrate. Mammals contain two isoforms of this enzyme, HO2 and HO1, which share the same α-helical fold forming the catalytic core and heme binding site, as well as a membrane spanning helix at their C-termini. However, unlike HO1, HO2 has an additional 30-residue N-terminus as well as two cysteine-proline sequences near the C-terminus that reside in heme regulatory motifs (HRMs). While the role of the additional N-terminal residues of HO2 is not yet understood, the HRMs have been proposed to reversibly form a thiol/disulfide redox switch that modulates the affinity of HO2 for ferric heme as a function of cellular redox poise. To further define the roles of the N- and C-terminal regions unique to HO2, we used multiple spectroscopic techniques to characterize these regions of the human HO2. Nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopic experiments with HO2 demonstrate that, when the HRMs are in the oxidized state (HO2O), both the extra N-terminal and the C-terminal HRM-containing regions are disordered. However, protein NMR experiments illustrate that, under reducing conditions, the C-terminal region gains some structure as the Cys residues in the HRMs undergo reduction (HO2R) and, in experiments employing a diamagnetic protoporphyrin, suggest a redox-dependent interaction between the core and the HRM domains. Further, electron nuclear double resonance and X-ray absorption spectroscopic studies demonstrate that, upon reduction of the HRMs to the sulfhydryl form, a cysteine residue from the HRM region ligates to a ferric heme. Taken together with EPR measurements, which show the appearance of a new low-spin heme signal in reduced HO2, it appears that a cysteine residue(s) in the HRMs directly interacts

  5. Spectroscopic studies reveal that the heme regulatory motifs of heme oxygenase-2 are dynamically disordered and exhibit redox-dependent interaction with heme

    DOE PAGES

    Bagai, Ireena; Sarangi, Ritimukta; Fleischhacker, Angela S.; ...

    2015-05-05

    Heme oxygenase (HO) catalyzes a key step in heme homeostasis: the O₂₋ and NADPH-cytochrome P450 reductase-dependent conversion of heme to biliverdin, Fe, and CO through a process in which the heme participates both as a prosthetic group and as a substrate. Mammals contain two isoforms of this enzyme, HO2 and HO1, which share the same α-helical fold forming the catalytic core and heme binding site, as well as a membrane spanning helix at their C-termini. However, unlike HO1, HO2 has an additional 30-residue N-terminus as well as two cysteine-proline sequences near the C-terminus that reside in heme regulatory motifs (HRMs).more » While the role of the additional N-terminal residues of HO2 is not yet understood, the HRMs have been proposed to reversibly form a thiol/disulfide redox switch that modulates the affinity of HO2 for ferric heme as a function of cellular redox poise. To further define the roles of the N- and C-terminal regions unique to HO2, we used multiple spectroscopic techniques to characterize these regions of the human HO2. Nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopic experiments with HO2 demonstrate that, when the HRMs are in the oxidized state (HO2O), both the extra N-terminal and the C-terminal HRM-containing regions are disordered. However, protein NMR experiments illustrate that, under reducing conditions, the C-terminal region gains some structure as the Cys residues in the HRMs undergo reduction (HO2R) and, in experiments employing a diamagnetic protoporphyrin, suggest a redox-dependent interaction between the core and the HRM domains. Further, electron nuclear double resonance and X-ray absorption spectroscopic studies demonstrate that, upon reduction of the HRMs to the sulfhydryl form, a cysteine residue from the HRM region ligates to a ferric heme. Taken together with EPR measurements, which show the appearance of a new low-spin heme signal in reduced HO2, it appears that a cysteine residue(s) in the HRMs directly interacts with a second

  6. Understanding genetic regulatory networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kauffman, Stuart

    2003-04-01

    Random Boolean networks (RBM) were introduced about 35 years ago as first crude models of genetic regulatory networks. RBNs are comprised of N on-off genes, connected by a randomly assigned regulatory wiring diagram where each gene has K inputs, and each gene is controlled by a randomly assigned Boolean function. This procedure samples at random from the ensemble of all possible NK Boolean networks. The central ideas are to study the typical, or generic properties of this ensemble, and see 1) whether characteristic differences appear as K and biases in Boolean functions are introducted, and 2) whether a subclass of this ensemble has properties matching real cells. Such networks behave in an ordered or a chaotic regime, with a phase transition, "the edge of chaos" between the two regimes. Networks with continuous variables exhibit the same two regimes. Substantial evidence suggests that real cells are in the ordered regime. A key concept is that of an attractor. This is a reentrant trajectory of states of the network, called a state cycle. The central biological interpretation is that cell types are attractors. A number of properties differentiate the ordered and chaotic regimes. These include the size and number of attractors, the existence in the ordered regime of a percolating "sea" of genes frozen in the on or off state, with a remainder of isolated twinkling islands of genes, a power law distribution of avalanches of gene activity changes following perturbation to a single gene in the ordered regime versus a similar power law distribution plus a spike of enormous avalanches of gene changes in the chaotic regime, and the existence of branching pathway of "differentiation" between attractors induced by perturbations in the ordered regime. Noise is serious issue, since noise disrupts attractors. But numerical evidence suggests that attractors can be made very stable to noise, and meanwhile, metaplasias may be a biological manifestation of noise. As we learn more

  7. Regulatory heme and trichloroethylene intoxication: A possible explanation of the case of "A Civil Action".

    PubMed

    Fujita, Hiroyoshi; Nishitani, Chiaki; Ogawa, Kazuhiro

    2002-07-01

    In 1998, a amovie entitled "A Civil Action" was released. The movie described the Woburn case, begun in 1982 and concluded in 1990, one of the most famous cases of trichloroethylene pollution. In a small town near Boston, twelve children died of leukemia, which seemed attributable to trichloroethylene contamination of the drinking water. The victims, however, could not win the case, since evidence that the identified chemicals could cause leukemia and other human illnesses was rather sketchy. There have been many cases of trichloroethylene pollution in industrial nations including Japan, therefore, we reconsidered the missing link. Our conclusion is that the disease occurred not by a direct effect of the chemical hazard on biological macromolecules but by an indirect effect through the physiological system such as signal transduction and transcriptional regulation. In 1984, we reported a marked reduction in the regulatory heme pool by trichloroethylene exposure, however, the biological significance was not well understood. Recently, we found that the DNA binding activity of Bach1, a negative regulator of genes, is controlled by heme, the regulation of which seems to explain how leukemia develops. The heterodimer of Bach1 with MafK recognizes Maf recognition elements (MAREs) competing with the erythroid type positive regulator, a complex of NF-E2 with MafK. Bach1/MafK occupies MAREs under lower heme conditions, whereas MAREs are open to NF-E2/MafK along with increasing heme concentration. Since the NF-E2/MafK function is closely related to normal erythroid differentiation, of which disorders such as sideroblastic anemia are often related to neoplasia; i.e., a clonal disorder that can progress to leukemia. Thus, a marked decline in regulatory heme by trichloroethylene intoxication could be one of the pathways to leukemia.

  8. Microbial regulatory and metabolic networks.

    PubMed

    Cho, Byung-Kwan; Charusanti, Pep; Herrgård, Markus J; Palsson, Bernhard O

    2007-08-01

    Reconstruction of transcriptional regulatory and metabolic networks is the foundation of large-scale microbial systems and synthetic biology. An enormous amount of information including the annotated genomic sequences and the genomic locations of DNA-binding regulatory proteins can be used to define metabolic and regulatory networks in cells. In particular, advances in experimental methods to map regulatory networks in microbial cells have allowed reliable data-driven reconstruction of these networks. Recent work on metabolic engineering and experimental evolution of microbes highlights the key role of global regulatory networks in controlling specific metabolic processes and the need to consider the integrated function of multiple types of networks for both scientific and engineering purposes.

  9. Control of intracellular heme levels: Heme transporters and Heme oxygenases

    PubMed Central

    Khan, Anwar A.; Quigley, John G.

    2011-01-01

    Heme serves as a co-factor in proteins involved in fundamental biological processes including oxidative metabolism, oxygen storage and transport, signal transduction and drug metabolism. In addition, heme is important for systemic iron homeostasis in mammals. Heme has important regulatory roles in cell biology, yet excessive levels of intracellular heme are toxic; thus, mechanisms have evolved to control the acquisition, synthesis, catabolism and expulsion of cellular heme. Recently, a number of transporters of heme and heme synthesis intermediates have been described. Here we review aspects of heme metabolism and discuss our current understanding of heme transporters, with emphasis on the function of the cell-surface heme exporter, FLVCR. Knockdown of Flvcr in mice leads to both defective erythropoiesis and disturbed systemic iron homeostasis, underscoring the critical role of heme transporters in mammalian physiology. PMID:21238504

  10. Tyrosine B10 triggers a heme propionate hydrogen bonding network loop with glutamine E7 moiety

    SciTech Connect

    Ramos-Santana, Brenda J.; Lopez-Garriga, Juan

    2012-08-10

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer H-bonding network loop by PheB10Tyr mutation is proposed. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer The propionate group H-bonding network restricted the flexibility of the heme. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer The hydrogen bonding interaction modulates the electron density of the iron. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Propionate H-bonding network loop explains the heme-ligand stabilization. -- Abstract: Propionates, as peripheral groups of the heme active center in hemeproteins have been described to contribute in the modulation of heme reactivity and ligand selection. These electronic characteristics prompted the question of whether the presence of hydrogen bonding networks between propionates and distal amino acids present in the heme ligand moiety can modulate physiological relevant events, like ligand binding association and dissociation activities. Here, the role of these networks was evaluated by NMR spectroscopy using the hemoglobin I PheB10Tyr mutant from Lucina pectinata as model for TyrB10 and GlnE7 hemeproteins. {sup 1}H-NMR results for the rHbICN PheB10Tyr derivative showed chemical shifts of TyrB10 OH{eta} at 31.00 ppm, GlnE7 N{sub {epsilon}1}H/N{sub {epsilon}2}H at 10.66 ppm/-3.27 ppm, and PheE11 C{sub {delta}}H at 11.75 ppm, indicating the presence of a crowded, collapsed, and constrained distal pocket. Strong dipolar contacts and inter-residues crosspeaks between GlnE7/6-propionate group, GlnE7/TyrB10 and TyrB10/CN suggest that this hydrogen bonding network loop between GlnE7, TyrB10, 6-propionate group, and the heme ligand contribute significantly to the modulation of the heme iron electron density as well as the ligand stabilization mechanism. Therefore, the network loop presented here support the fact that the electron withdrawing character of the hydrogen bonding is controlled by the interaction of the propionates and the nearby electronic environments contributing to the modulation of the heme electron density state. Thus

  11. Plant Evolution: Evolving Antagonistic Gene Regulatory Networks.

    PubMed

    Cooper, Endymion D

    2016-06-20

    Developing a structurally complex phenotype requires a complex regulatory network. A new study shows how gene duplication provides a potential source of antagonistic interactions, an important component of gene regulatory networks.

  12. The core regulatory network in human cells.

    PubMed

    Kim, Man-Sun; Kim, Dongsan; Kang, Nam Sook; Kim, Jeong-Rae

    2017-03-04

    In order to discover the common characteristics of various cell types in the human body, many researches have been conducted to find the set of genes commonly expressed in various cell types and tissues. However, the functional characteristics of a cell is determined by the complex regulatory relationships among the genes rather than by expressed genes themselves. Therefore, it is more important to identify and analyze a core regulatory network where all regulatory relationship between genes are active across all cell types to uncover the common features of various cell types. Here, based on hundreds of tissue-specific gene regulatory networks constructed by recent genome-wide experimental data, we constructed the core regulatory network. Interestingly, we found that the core regulatory network is organized by simple cascade and has few complex regulations such as feedback or feed-forward loops. Moreover, we discovered that the regulatory links from genes in the core regulatory network to genes in the peripheral regulatory network are much more abundant than the reverse direction links. These results suggest that the core regulatory network locates at the top of regulatory network and plays a role as a 'hub' in terms of information flow, and the information that is common to all cells can be modified to achieve the tissue-specific characteristics through various types of feedback and feed-forward loops in the peripheral regulatory networks. We also found that the genes in the core regulatory network are evolutionary conserved, essential and non-disease, non-druggable genes compared to the peripheral genes. Overall, our study provides an insight into how all human cells share a common function and generate tissue-specific functional traits by transmitting and processing information through regulatory network.

  13. Boolean Modelingof Genetic Regulatory Networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Albert, Réka

    Biological systems form complex networks of interaction on several scales, ranging from the molecular to the ecosystem level. On the subcellular scale, interaction between genes and gene products (mRNAs, proteins) forms the basis of essential processes like signal transduction, cell metabolism or embryonic development. Recent experimental advances helped uncover the qualitative structure of many gene control networks, creating a surge of interest in the quantitative description of gene regulation. We give a brief description of the main frameworks and methods used in modeling gene regulatory networks, then focus on a recent model of the segment polarity genes of the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster. The basis of this model is the known interactions between the products of the segment polarity genes, and the network topology these interactions form. The interactions between mRNAs and proteins are described as logical (Boolean) functions. The success in reproducing both wild type and mutant gene expression patterns suggests that the kinetic details of the interactions are not essential as long as the network of interactions is unperturbed. The model predicts the gene patterns for cases that were not yet studied experimentally, and implies a remarkable robustness toward changes in internal parameters, initial conditions and even some mutations.

  14. A genomic regulatory network for development

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Davidson, Eric H.; Rast, Jonathan P.; Oliveri, Paola; Ransick, Andrew; Calestani, Cristina; Yuh, Chiou-Hwa; Minokawa, Takuya; Amore, Gabriele; Hinman, Veronica; Arenas-Mena, Cesar; Otim, Ochan; Brown, C. Titus; Livi, Carolina B.; Lee, Pei Yun; Revilla, Roger; Rust, Alistair G.; Pan, Zheng jun; Schilstra, Maria J.; Clarke, Peter J C.; Arnone, Maria I.; Rowen, Lee; Cameron, R. Andrew; McClay, David R.; Hood, Leroy; Bolouri, Hamid

    2002-01-01

    Development of the body plan is controlled by large networks of regulatory genes. A gene regulatory network that controls the specification of endoderm and mesoderm in the sea urchin embryo is summarized here. The network was derived from large-scale perturbation analyses, in combination with computational methodologies, genomic data, cis-regulatory analysis, and molecular embryology. The network contains over 40 genes at present, and each node can be directly verified at the DNA sequence level by cis-regulatory analysis. Its architecture reveals specific and general aspects of development, such as how given cells generate their ordained fates in the embryo and why the process moves inexorably forward in developmental time.

  15. Evolving Robust Gene Regulatory Networks

    PubMed Central

    Noman, Nasimul; Monjo, Taku; Moscato, Pablo; Iba, Hitoshi

    2015-01-01

    Design and implementation of robust network modules is essential for construction of complex biological systems through hierarchical assembly of ‘parts’ and ‘devices’. The robustness of gene regulatory networks (GRNs) is ascribed chiefly to the underlying topology. The automatic designing capability of GRN topology that can exhibit robust behavior can dramatically change the current practice in synthetic biology. A recent study shows that Darwinian evolution can gradually develop higher topological robustness. Subsequently, this work presents an evolutionary algorithm that simulates natural evolution in silico, for identifying network topologies that are robust to perturbations. We present a Monte Carlo based method for quantifying topological robustness and designed a fitness approximation approach for efficient calculation of topological robustness which is computationally very intensive. The proposed framework was verified using two classic GRN behaviors: oscillation and bistability, although the framework is generalized for evolving other types of responses. The algorithm identified robust GRN architectures which were verified using different analysis and comparison. Analysis of the results also shed light on the relationship among robustness, cooperativity and complexity. This study also shows that nature has already evolved very robust architectures for its crucial systems; hence simulation of this natural process can be very valuable for designing robust biological systems. PMID:25616055

  16. Network growth models and genetic regulatory networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Foster, D. V.; Kauffman, S. A.; Socolar, J. E. S.

    2006-03-01

    We study a class of growth algorithms for directed graphs that are candidate models for the evolution of genetic regulatory networks. The algorithms involve partial duplication of nodes and their links, together with the innovation of new links, allowing for the possibility that input and output links from a newly created node may have different probabilities of survival. We find some counterintuitive trends as the parameters are varied, including the broadening of the in-degree distribution when the probability for retaining input links is decreased. We also find that both the scaling of transcription factors with genome size and the measured degree distributions for genes in yeast can be reproduced by the growth algorithm if and only if a special seed is used to initiate the process.

  17. Network growth models and genetic regulatory networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Socolar, Joshua; Foster, David; Kauffman, Stuart

    2006-03-01

    We study a class of growth algorithms for directed graphs that are candidate models for the evolution of genetic regulatory networks. The algorithms involve partial duplication of nodes and their links, together with innovation of new links, allowing for the possibility that input and output links from a newly created node may have different probabilities of survival. We find some counterintuitive trends as parameters are varied, including the broadening of indegree distribution when the probability for retaining input links is decreased. We also find that both the scaling of transcription factors with genome size and the measured degree distributions for genes in yeast can be reproduced by the growth algorithm if and only if a special seed is used to initiate the process.

  18. Modeling of hysteresis in gene regulatory networks.

    PubMed

    Hu, J; Qin, K R; Xiang, C; Lee, T H

    2012-08-01

    Hysteresis, observed in many gene regulatory networks, has a pivotal impact on biological systems, which enhances the robustness of cell functions. In this paper, a general model is proposed to describe the hysteretic gene regulatory network by combining the hysteresis component and the transient dynamics. The Bouc-Wen hysteresis model is modified to describe the hysteresis component in the mammalian gene regulatory networks. Rigorous mathematical analysis on the dynamical properties of the model is presented to ensure the bounded-input-bounded-output (BIBO) stability and demonstrates that the original Bouc-Wen model can only generate a clockwise hysteresis loop while the modified model can describe both clockwise and counter clockwise hysteresis loops. Simulation studies have shown that the hysteresis loops from our model are consistent with the experimental observations in three mammalian gene regulatory networks and two E.coli gene regulatory networks, which demonstrate the ability and accuracy of the mathematical model to emulate natural gene expression behavior with hysteresis. A comparison study has also been conducted to show that this model fits the experiment data significantly better than previous ones in the literature. The successful modeling of the hysteresis in all the five hysteretic gene regulatory networks suggests that the new model has the potential to be a unified framework for modeling hysteresis in gene regulatory networks and provide better understanding of the general mechanism that drives the hysteretic function.

  19. Heme oxygenase-1 protects regulatory T cells from hypoxia-induced cellular stress in an experimental mouse brain tumor model

    PubMed Central

    Dey, Mahua; Chang, Alan L.; Wainwright, Derek A.; Ahmed, Atique U.; Han, Yu; Balyasnikova, Irina V.; Lesniak, Maciej S.

    2013-01-01

    Two characteristic features of malignant gliomas (MG) are the presence of hypoxia and accumulation of regulatory T cells (Treg). Heme-oxygenase-1 (HO1) is a cytoprotective enzyme expressed in high level by Tregs in glioma. In this study, we show that higher HO1 expression in Treg is associated with increased survival under hypoxic conditions and that HO1 inhibitor, tin protoporphyrin (SnPP), abrogate the survival benefits. Moreover, SnPP preferentially eliminates Tregs and treatment of tumor bearing mice with SnPP significantly increases survival (23 to 31 days (p < 0.05)). Thus HO1 inhibition provides another alternative way of therapeutically targeting Tregs in MG. PMID:24268287

  20. Evolutionary rewiring of bacterial regulatory networks

    PubMed Central

    Taylor, Tiffany B.; Mulley, Geraldine; McGuffin, Liam J.; Johnson, Louise J.; Brockhurst, Michael A.; Arseneault, Tanya; Silby, Mark W.; Jackson, Robert W.

    2015-01-01

    Bacteria have evolved complex regulatory networks that enable integration of multiple intracellular and extracellular signals to coordinate responses to environmental changes. However, our knowledge of how regulatory systems function and evolve is still relatively limited. There is often extensive homology between components of different networks, due to past cycles of gene duplication, divergence, and horizontal gene transfer, raising the possibility of cross-talk or redundancy. Consequently, evolutionary resilience is built into gene networks - homology between regulators can potentially allow rapid rescue of lost regulatory function across distant regions of the genome. In our recent study [Taylor, et al. Science (2015), 347(6225)] we find that mutations that facilitate cross-talk between pathways can contribute to gene network evolution, but that such mutations come with severe pleiotropic costs. Arising from this work are a number of questions surrounding how this phenomenon occurs. PMID:28357301

  1. Autonomous Boolean modeling of gene regulatory networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Socolar, Joshua; Sun, Mengyang; Cheng, Xianrui

    2014-03-01

    In cases where the dynamical properties of gene regulatory networks are important, a faithful model must include three key features: a network topology; a functional response of each element to its inputs; and timing information about the transmission of signals across network links. Autonomous Boolean network (ABN) models are efficient representations of these elements and are amenable to analysis. We present an ABN model of the gene regulatory network governing cell fate specification in the early sea urchin embryo, which must generate three bands of distinct tissue types after several cell divisions, beginning from an initial condition with only two distinct cell types. Analysis of the spatial patterning problem and the dynamics of a network constructed from available experimental results reveals that a simple mechanism is at work in this case. Supported by NSF Grant DMS-10-68602

  2. Modeling gene regulatory network motifs using statecharts

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Gene regulatory networks are widely used by biologists to describe the interactions among genes, proteins and other components at the intra-cellular level. Recently, a great effort has been devoted to give gene regulatory networks a formal semantics based on existing computational frameworks. For this purpose, we consider Statecharts, which are a modular, hierarchical and executable formal model widely used to represent software systems. We use Statecharts for modeling small and recurring patterns of interactions in gene regulatory networks, called motifs. Results We present an improved method for modeling gene regulatory network motifs using Statecharts and we describe the successful modeling of several motifs, including those which could not be modeled or whose models could not be distinguished using the method of a previous proposal. We model motifs in an easy and intuitive way by taking advantage of the visual features of Statecharts. Our modeling approach is able to simulate some interesting temporal properties of gene regulatory network motifs: the delay in the activation and the deactivation of the "output" gene in the coherent type-1 feedforward loop, the pulse in the incoherent type-1 feedforward loop, the bistability nature of double positive and double negative feedback loops, the oscillatory behavior of the negative feedback loop, and the "lock-in" effect of positive autoregulation. Conclusions We present a Statecharts-based approach for the modeling of gene regulatory network motifs in biological systems. The basic motifs used to build more complex networks (that is, simple regulation, reciprocal regulation, feedback loop, feedforward loop, and autoregulation) can be faithfully described and their temporal dynamics can be analyzed. PMID:22536967

  3. Heme content in developing chloroplasts

    SciTech Connect

    Thomas, J.; Weinstein, J.D. )

    1991-05-01

    Heme regulates tetrapyrrole biosynthesis by inhibition of {delta}-aminolevulinic acid synthesis, product inhibition of heme synthesis, and possibly other mechanisms. Determination of the physiological relevance of this inhibition requires a sensitive measurement which can distinguish regulatory free heme from heme which is an integral part of functional hemoproteins. A preliminary estimate was provided by reconstituting peroxidase activity from apo-peroxidase and the heme contained in broken plastids. However, subsequent experiments have suggested that this initial estimate was too large due to reconstitution of apo-peroxidase with heme from functional hemoproteins (i.e. heme stealing). The authors have now refined the measurement techniques to greatly reduce the extent of this heme stealing. Incubation of broken plastids with apo-peroxidase at 10C resolves the kinetics of reconstitution into two components. A fast component levels off after 100 min, and a slow component increases linearly for up to 6 hours. They believe that the heme which reconstitutes during the fast phase represents free heme, and the linear slow component represents heme stealing. In support of this theory, incubation at 15C increases the rate of both components. However, extrapolation to zero time of the slow components of the 10C and 15C time courses results in equivalent amounts of heme. Based on this kinetic differentiation between free heme and hemoprotein heme, chloroplasts isolated from cucumber cotyledons after 30 h of greening contain substantially greater amounts of free heme than etioplasts.

  4. Phenotypic switching in gene regulatory networks.

    PubMed

    Thomas, Philipp; Popović, Nikola; Grima, Ramon

    2014-05-13

    Noise in gene expression can lead to reversible phenotypic switching. Several experimental studies have shown that the abundance distributions of proteins in a population of isogenic cells may display multiple distinct maxima. Each of these maxima may be associated with a subpopulation of a particular phenotype, the quantification of which is important for understanding cellular decision-making. Here, we devise a methodology which allows us to quantify multimodal gene expression distributions and single-cell power spectra in gene regulatory networks. Extending the commonly used linear noise approximation, we rigorously show that, in the limit of slow promoter dynamics, these distributions can be systematically approximated as a mixture of Gaussian components in a wide class of networks. The resulting closed-form approximation provides a practical tool for studying complex nonlinear gene regulatory networks that have thus far been amenable only to stochastic simulation. We demonstrate the applicability of our approach in a number of genetic networks, uncovering previously unidentified dynamical characteristics associated with phenotypic switching. Specifically, we elucidate how the interplay of transcriptional and translational regulation can be exploited to control the multimodality of gene expression distributions in two-promoter networks. We demonstrate how phenotypic switching leads to birhythmical expression in a genetic oscillator, and to hysteresis in phenotypic induction, thus highlighting the ability of regulatory networks to retain memory.

  5. The Mycobacterium tuberculosis regulatory network and hypoxia

    PubMed Central

    Galagan, James E.; Minch, Kyle; Peterson, Matthew; Lyubetskaya, Anna; Azizi, Elham; Sweet, Linsday; Gomes, Antonio; Rustad, Tige; Dolganov, Gregory; Glotova, Irina; Abeel, Thomas; Mahwinney, Chris; Kennedy, Adam D.; Allard, René; Brabant, William; Krueger, Andrew; Jaini, Suma; Honda, Brent; Yu, Wen-Han; Hickey, Mark J.; Zucker, Jeremy; Garay, Christopher; Weiner, Brian; Sisk, Peter; Stolte, Christian; Winkler, Jessica K.; Van de Peer, Yves; Iazzetti, Paul; Camacho, Diogo; Dreyfuss, Jonathan; Liu, Yang; Dorhoi, Anca; Mollenkopf, Hans-Joachim; Drogaris, Paul; Lamontagne, Julie; Zhou, Yiyong; Piquenot, Julie; Park, Sang Tae; Raman, Sahadevan; Kaufmann, Stefan H. E.; Mohney, Robert P.; Chelsky, Daniel; Moody, D. Branch; Sherman, David R.; Schoolnik, Gary K.

    2014-01-01

    We have taken the first steps towards a complete reconstruction of the Mycobacterium tuberculosis regulatory network based on ChIP-Seq and combined this reconstruction with system-wide profiling of messenger RNAs, proteins, metabolites and lipids during hypoxia and re-aeration. Adaptations to hypoxia are thought to have a prominent role in M. tuberculosis pathogenesis. Using ChIP-Seq combined with expression data from the induction of the same factors, we have reconstructed a draft regulatory network based on 50 transcription factors. This network model revealed a direct interconnection between the hypoxic response, lipid catabolism, lipid anabolism and the production of cell wall lipids. As a validation of this model, in response to oxygen availability we observe substantial alterations in lipid content and changes in gene expression and metabolites in corresponding metabolic pathways. The regulatory network reveals transcription factors underlying these changes, allows us to computationally predict expression changes, and indicates that Rv0081 is a regulatory hub. PMID:23823726

  6. The Regulatory Network of Pseudomonas aeruginosa

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Pseudomonas aeruginosa is an important bacterial model due to its metabolic and pathogenic abilities, which allow it to interact and colonize a wide range of hosts, including plants and animals. In this work we compile and analyze the structure and organization of an experimentally supported regulatory network in this bacterium. Results The regulatory network consists of 690 genes and 1020 regulatory interactions between their products (12% of total genes: 54% sigma and 16% of transcription factors). This complex interplay makes the third largest regulatory network of those reported in bacteria. The entire network is enriched for activating interactions and, peculiarly, self-activation seems to occur more prominent for transcription factors (TFs), which contrasts with other biological networks where self-repression is dominant. The network contains a giant component of 650 genes organized into 11 hierarchies, encompassing important biological processes, such as, biofilms formation, production of exopolysaccharide alginate and several virulence factors, and of the so-called quorum sensing regulons. Conclusions The study of gene regulation in P. aeruginosa is biased towards pathogenesis and virulence processes, all of which are interconnected. The network shows power-law distribution -input degree -, and we identified the top ten global regulators, six two-element cycles, the longest paths have ten steps, six biological modules and the main motifs containing three and four elements. We think this work can provide insights for the design of further studies to cover the many gaps in knowledge of this important bacterial model, and for the design of systems strategies to combat this bacterium. PMID:22587778

  7. Modeling Emergence in Neuroprotective Regulatory Networks

    SciTech Connect

    Sanfilippo, Antonio P.; Haack, Jereme N.; McDermott, Jason E.; Stevens, S.L.; Stenzel-Poore, Mary

    2013-01-05

    The use of predictive modeling in the analysis of gene expression data can greatly accelerate the pace of scientific discovery in biomedical research by enabling in silico experimentation to test disease triggers and potential drug therapies. Techniques that focus on modeling emergence, such as agent-based modeling and multi-agent simulations, are of particular interest as they support the discovery of pathways that may have never been observed in the past. Thus far, these techniques have been primarily applied at the multi-cellular level, or have focused on signaling and metabolic networks. We present an approach where emergence modeling is extended to regulatory networks and demonstrate its application to the discovery of neuroprotective pathways. An initial evaluation of the approach indicates that emergence modeling provides novel insights for the analysis of regulatory networks that can advance the discovery of acute treatments for stroke and other diseases.

  8. Gene regulatory networks and the underlying biology of developmental toxicity

    EPA Science Inventory

    Embryonic cells are specified by large-scale networks of functionally linked regulatory genes. Knowledge of the relevant gene regulatory networks is essential for understanding phenotypic heterogeneity that emerges from disruption of molecular functions, cellular processes or sig...

  9. Inference of Gene Regulatory Network Based on Local Bayesian Networks.

    PubMed

    Liu, Fei; Zhang, Shao-Wu; Guo, Wei-Feng; Wei, Ze-Gang; Chen, Luonan

    2016-08-01

    The inference of gene regulatory networks (GRNs) from expression data can mine the direct regulations among genes and gain deep insights into biological processes at a network level. During past decades, numerous computational approaches have been introduced for inferring the GRNs. However, many of them still suffer from various problems, e.g., Bayesian network (BN) methods cannot handle large-scale networks due to their high computational complexity, while information theory-based methods cannot identify the directions of regulatory interactions and also suffer from false positive/negative problems. To overcome the limitations, in this work we present a novel algorithm, namely local Bayesian network (LBN), to infer GRNs from gene expression data by using the network decomposition strategy and false-positive edge elimination scheme. Specifically, LBN algorithm first uses conditional mutual information (CMI) to construct an initial network or GRN, which is decomposed into a number of local networks or GRNs. Then, BN method is employed to generate a series of local BNs by selecting the k-nearest neighbors of each gene as its candidate regulatory genes, which significantly reduces the exponential search space from all possible GRN structures. Integrating these local BNs forms a tentative network or GRN by performing CMI, which reduces redundant regulations in the GRN and thus alleviates the false positive problem. The final network or GRN can be obtained by iteratively performing CMI and local BN on the tentative network. In the iterative process, the false or redundant regulations are gradually removed. When tested on the benchmark GRN datasets from DREAM challenge as well as the SOS DNA repair network in E.coli, our results suggest that LBN outperforms other state-of-the-art methods (ARACNE, GENIE3 and NARROMI) significantly, with more accurate and robust performance. In particular, the decomposition strategy with local Bayesian networks not only effectively reduce

  10. Dynamic simulation of regulatory networks using SQUAD

    PubMed Central

    Di Cara, Alessandro; Garg, Abhishek; De Micheli, Giovanni; Xenarios, Ioannis; Mendoza, Luis

    2007-01-01

    Background The ambition of most molecular biologists is the understanding of the intricate network of molecular interactions that control biological systems. As scientists uncover the components and the connectivity of these networks, it becomes possible to study their dynamical behavior as a whole and discover what is the specific role of each of their components. Since the behavior of a network is by no means intuitive, it becomes necessary to use computational models to understand its behavior and to be able to make predictions about it. Unfortunately, most current computational models describe small networks due to the scarcity of kinetic data available. To overcome this problem, we previously published a methodology to convert a signaling network into a dynamical system, even in the total absence of kinetic information. In this paper we present a software implementation of such methodology. Results We developed SQUAD, a software for the dynamic simulation of signaling networks using the standardized qualitative dynamical systems approach. SQUAD converts the network into a discrete dynamical system, and it uses a binary decision diagram algorithm to identify all the steady states of the system. Then, the software creates a continuous dynamical system and localizes its steady states which are located near the steady states of the discrete system. The software permits to make simulations on the continuous system, allowing for the modification of several parameters. Importantly, SQUAD includes a framework for perturbing networks in a manner similar to what is performed in experimental laboratory protocols, for example by activating receptors or knocking out molecular components. Using this software we have been able to successfully reproduce the behavior of the regulatory network implicated in T-helper cell differentiation. Conclusion The simulation of regulatory networks aims at predicting the behavior of a whole system when subject to stimuli, such as drugs, or

  11. Adaptation by Plasticity of Genetic Regulatory Networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brenner, Naama

    2007-03-01

    Genetic regulatory networks have an essential role in adaptation and evolution of cell populations. This role is strongly related to their dynamic properties over intermediate-to-long time scales. We have used the budding yeast as a model Eukaryote to study the long-term dynamics of the genetic regulatory system and its significance in evolution. A continuous cell growth technique (chemostat) allows us to monitor these systems over long times under controlled condition, enabling a quantitative characterization of dynamics: steady states and their stability, transients and relaxation. First, we have demonstrated adaptive dynamics in the GAL system, a classic model for a Eukaryotic genetic switch, induced and repressed by different carbon sources in the environment. We found that both induction and repression are only transient responses; over several generations, the system converges to a single robust steady state, independent of external conditions. Second, we explored the functional significance of such plasticity of the genetic regulatory network in evolution. We used genetic engineering to mimic the natural process of gene recruitment, placing the gene HIS3 under the regulation of the GAL system. Such genetic rewiring events are important in the evolution of gene regulation, but little is known about the physiological processes supporting them and the dynamics of their assimilation in a cell population. We have shown that cells carrying the rewired genome adapted to a demanding change of environment and stabilized a population, maintaining the adaptive state for hundreds of generations. Using genome-wide expression arrays we showed that underlying the observed adaptation is a global transcriptional programming that allowed tuning expression of the recruited gene to demands. Our results suggest that non-specific properties reflecting the natural plasticity of the regulatory network support adaptation of cells to novel challenges and enhance their evolvability.

  12. Modeling gene regulatory networks: A network simplification algorithm

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferreira, Luiz Henrique O.; de Castro, Maria Clicia S.; da Silva, Fabricio A. B.

    2016-12-01

    Boolean networks have been used for some time to model Gene Regulatory Networks (GRNs), which describe cell functions. Those models can help biologists to make predictions, prognosis and even specialized treatment when some disturb on the GRN lead to a sick condition. However, the amount of information related to a GRN can be huge, making the task of inferring its boolean network representation quite a challenge. The method shown here takes into account information about the interactome to build a network, where each node represents a protein, and uses the entropy of each node as a key to reduce the size of the network, allowing the further inferring process to focus only on the main protein hubs, the ones with most potential to interfere in overall network behavior.

  13. Generation of oscillating gene regulatory network motifs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Dorp, M.; Lannoo, B.; Carlon, E.

    2013-07-01

    Using an improved version of an evolutionary algorithm originally proposed by François and Hakim [Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USAPNASA60027-842410.1073/pnas.0304532101 101, 580 (2004)], we generated small gene regulatory networks in which the concentration of a target protein oscillates in time. These networks may serve as candidates for oscillatory modules to be found in larger regulatory networks and protein interaction networks. The algorithm was run for 105 times to produce a large set of oscillating modules, which were systematically classified and analyzed. The robustness of the oscillations against variations of the kinetic rates was also determined, to filter out the least robust cases. Furthermore, we show that the set of evolved networks can serve as a database of models whose behavior can be compared to experimentally observed oscillations. The algorithm found three smallest (core) oscillators in which nonlinearities and number of components are minimal. Two of those are two-gene modules: the mixed feedback loop, already discussed in the literature, and an autorepressed gene coupled with a heterodimer. The third one is a single gene module which is competitively regulated by a monomer and a dimer. The evolutionary algorithm also generated larger oscillating networks, which are in part extensions of the three core modules and in part genuinely new modules. The latter includes oscillators which do not rely on feedback induced by transcription factors, but are purely of post-transcriptional type. Analysis of post-transcriptional mechanisms of oscillation may provide useful information for circadian clock research, as recent experiments showed that circadian rhythms are maintained even in the absence of transcription.

  14. Regulatory gene networks and the properties of the developmental process

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Davidson, Eric H.; McClay, David R.; Hood, Leroy

    2003-01-01

    Genomic instructions for development are encoded in arrays of regulatory DNA. These specify large networks of interactions among genes producing transcription factors and signaling components. The architecture of such networks both explains and predicts developmental phenomenology. Although network analysis is yet in its early stages, some fundamental commonalities are already emerging. Two such are the use of multigenic feedback loops to ensure the progressivity of developmental regulatory states and the prevalence of repressive regulatory interactions in spatial control processes. Gene regulatory networks make it possible to explain the process of development in causal terms and eventually will enable the redesign of developmental regulatory circuitry to achieve different outcomes.

  15. Disruption of a hydrogen bond network in human versus spider monkey cytochrome c affects heme crevice stability.

    PubMed

    Goldes, Matthew E; Jeakins-Cooley, Margaret E; McClelland, Levi J; Mou, Tung-Chung; Bowler, Bruce E

    2016-05-01

    The hypothesis that the recent rapid evolution of primate cytochromes c, which primarily involves residues in the least stable Ω-loop (Ω-loop C, residues 40-57), stabilizes the heme crevice of cytochrome c relative to other mammals, is tested. To accomplish this goal, we have compared the properties of human and spider monkey cytochrome c and a set of four variants produced in the process of converting human cytochrome c into spider monkey cytochrome c. The global stability of all variants has been measured by guanidine hydrochloride denaturation. The stability of the heme crevice has been assessed with the alkaline conformational transition. Structural insight into the effects of the five amino acid substitutions needed to convert human cytochrome c into spider monkey cytochrome c is provided by a 1.15Å resolution structure of spider monkey cytochrome c. The global stability for all variants is near 9.0kcal/mol at 25°C and pH7, which is higher than that observed for other mammalian cytochromes c. The heme crevice stability is more sensitive to the substitutions required to produce spider monkey cytochrome c with decreases of up to 0.5 units in the apparent pKa of the alkaline conformational transition relative to human cytochrome c. The structure of spider monkey cytochrome c indicates that the Y46F substitution destabilizes the heme crevice by disrupting an extensive hydrogen bond network that connects three surface loops including Ω-loop D (residues 70-85), which contains the Met80 heme ligand.

  16. Genetic Regulatory Networks in Embryogenesis and Evolution

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1998-01-01

    The article introduces a series of papers that were originally presented at a workshop titled Genetic Regulatory Network in Embryogenesis and Evaluation. Contents include the following: evolution of cleavage programs in relationship to axial specification and body plan evolution, changes in cell lineage specification elucidate evolutionary relations in spiralia, axial patterning in the leech: developmental mechanisms and evolutionary implications, hox genes in arthropod development and evolution, heterochronic genes in development and evolution, a common theme for LIM homeobox gene function across phylogeny, and mechanisms of specification in ascidian embryos.

  17. Discovering Study-Specific Gene Regulatory Networks

    PubMed Central

    Bo, Valeria; Curtis, Tanya; Lysenko, Artem; Saqi, Mansoor; Swift, Stephen; Tucker, Allan

    2014-01-01

    Microarrays are commonly used in biology because of their ability to simultaneously measure thousands of genes under different conditions. Due to their structure, typically containing a high amount of variables but far fewer samples, scalable network analysis techniques are often employed. In particular, consensus approaches have been recently used that combine multiple microarray studies in order to find networks that are more robust. The purpose of this paper, however, is to combine multiple microarray studies to automatically identify subnetworks that are distinctive to specific experimental conditions rather than common to them all. To better understand key regulatory mechanisms and how they change under different conditions, we derive unique networks from multiple independent networks built using glasso which goes beyond standard correlations. This involves calculating cluster prediction accuracies to detect the most predictive genes for a specific set of conditions. We differentiate between accuracies calculated using cross-validation within a selected cluster of studies (the intra prediction accuracy) and those calculated on a set of independent studies belonging to different study clusters (inter prediction accuracy). Finally, we compare our method's results to related state-of-the art techniques. We explore how the proposed pipeline performs on both synthetic data and real data (wheat and Fusarium). Our results show that subnetworks can be identified reliably that are specific to subsets of studies and that these networks reflect key mechanisms that are fundamental to the experimental conditions in each of those subsets. PMID:25191999

  18. Topological origin of global attractors in gene regulatory networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, YunJun; Ouyang, Qi; Geng, Zhi

    2015-02-01

    Fixed-point attractors with global stability manifest themselves in a number of gene regulatory networks. This property indicates the stability of regulatory networks against small state perturbations and is closely related to other complex dynamics. In this paper, we aim to reveal the core modules in regulatory networks that determine their global attractors and the relationship between these core modules and other motifs. This work has been done via three steps. Firstly, inspired by the signal transmission in the regulation process, we extract the model of chain-like network from regulation networks. We propose a module of "ideal transmission chain (ITC)", which is proved sufficient and necessary (under certain condition) to form a global fixed-point in the context of chain-like network. Secondly, by examining two well-studied regulatory networks (i.e., the cell-cycle regulatory networks of Budding yeast and Fission yeast), we identify the ideal modules in true regulation networks and demonstrate that the modules have a superior contribution to network stability (quantified by the relative size of the biggest attraction basin). Thirdly, in these two regulation networks, we find that the double negative feedback loops, which are the key motifs of forming bistability in regulation, are connected to these core modules with high network stability. These results have shed new light on the connection between the topological feature and the dynamic property of regulatory networks.

  19. Information transmission in genetic regulatory networks: a review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tkačik, Gašper; Walczak, Aleksandra M.

    2011-04-01

    Genetic regulatory networks enable cells to respond to changes in internal and external conditions by dynamically coordinating their gene expression profiles. Our ability to make quantitative measurements in these biochemical circuits has deepened our understanding of what kinds of computations genetic regulatory networks can perform, and with what reliability. These advances have motivated researchers to look for connections between the architecture and function of genetic regulatory networks. Transmitting information between a network's inputs and outputs has been proposed as one such possible measure of function, relevant in certain biological contexts. Here we summarize recent developments in the application of information theory to gene regulatory networks. We first review basic concepts in information theory necessary for understanding recent work. We then discuss the functional complexity of gene regulation, which arises from the molecular nature of the regulatory interactions. We end by reviewing some experiments that support the view that genetic networks responsible for early development of multicellular organisms might be maximizing transmitted 'positional information'.

  20. Non-transcriptional regulatory processes shape transcriptional network dynamics.

    PubMed

    Ray, J Christian J; Tabor, Jeffrey J; Igoshin, Oleg A

    2011-10-11

    Information about the extra- or intracellular environment is often captured as biochemical signals that propagate through regulatory networks. These signals eventually drive phenotypic changes, typically by altering gene expression programmes in the cell. Reconstruction of transcriptional regulatory networks has given a compelling picture of bacterial physiology, but transcriptional network maps alone often fail to describe phenotypes. Cellular response dynamics are ultimately determined by interactions between transcriptional and non-transcriptional networks, with dramatic implications for physiology and evolution. Here, we provide an overview of non-transcriptional interactions that can affect the performance of natural and synthetic bacterial regulatory networks.

  1. Modeling Evolution of Regulatory Networks in Artificial Organisms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sánchez-Dehesa, Yolanda; Beslon, Guillaume; Peña, José-María

    2007-09-01

    Regulatory networks are not randomly connected. They are modular, scale-free networks and some motifs distribution is clearly different from random distribution. However, the evolutionary causes and consequences of this specific connectivity are mainly unknown. In this paper we propose Raevol, an integrative model to study the evolution of regulatory networks. While most existing models consider direct evolution of the regulatory network, Raevol integrates a realistic genotype-phenotype mapping where the genome undergo mutations that indirectly modify the genetic network. Moreover, the organisms are selected at the phenotype level (which is produced by the genome via the regulation network). Thus, in Raevol, the network only indirectly evolve and it can only be selected if its activity influences the phenotype. We plan to use this model to better understand the network evolution and to study the influence of networks topology on evolution.

  2. Computational inference of gene regulatory networks: Approaches, limitations and opportunities.

    PubMed

    Banf, Michael; Rhee, Seung Y

    2017-01-01

    Gene regulatory networks lie at the core of cell function control. In E. coli and S. cerevisiae, the study of gene regulatory networks has led to the discovery of regulatory mechanisms responsible for the control of cell growth, differentiation and responses to environmental stimuli. In plants, computational rendering of gene regulatory networks is gaining momentum, thanks to the recent availability of high-quality genomes and transcriptomes and development of computational network inference approaches. Here, we review current techniques, challenges and trends in gene regulatory network inference and highlight challenges and opportunities for plant science. We provide plant-specific application examples to guide researchers in selecting methodologies that suit their particular research questions. Given the interdisciplinary nature of gene regulatory network inference, we tried to cater to both biologists and computer scientists to help them engage in a dialogue about concepts and caveats in network inference. Specifically, we discuss problems and opportunities in heterogeneous data integration for eukaryotic organisms and common caveats to be considered during network model evaluation. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Plant Gene Regulatory Mechanisms and Networks, edited by Dr. Erich Grotewold and Dr. Nathan Springer.

  3. Estimating Gene Regulatory Networks with pandaR.

    PubMed

    Schlauch, Daniel; Paulson, Joseph N; Young, Albert; Glass, Kimberly; Quackenbush, John

    2017-03-11

    PANDA (Passing Attributes betweenNetworks forData Assimilation) is a gene regulatory network inference method that begins with amodel of transcription factor-target gene interactions and usesmessage passing to update the network model given available transcriptomic and protein-protein interaction data. PANDA is used to estimate networks for each experimental group and the network models are then compared between groups to explore transcriptional processes that distinguish the groups. We present pandaR (bioconductor.org/packages/pandaR), a Bioconductor package that implements PANDA and provides a framework for exploratory data analysis on gene regulatory networks.

  4. Biosynthesis of Hemes.

    PubMed

    Beale, Samuel I

    2007-04-01

    This review is concerned specifically with the structures and biosynthesis of hemes in E. coli and serovar Typhimurium. However, inasmuch as all tetrapyrroles share a common biosynthetic pathway, much of the material covered here is applicable to tetrapyrrole biosynthesis in other organisms. Conversely, much of the available information about tetrapyrrole biosynthesis has been gained from studies of other organisms, such as plants, algae, cyanobacteria, and anoxygenic phototrophs, which synthesize large quantities of these compounds. This information is applicable to E. coli and serovar Typhimurium. Hemes play important roles as enzyme prosthetic groups in mineral nutrition, redox metabolism, and gas-and redox-modulated signal transduction. The biosynthetic steps from the earliest universal precursor, 5-aminolevulinic acid (ALA), to protoporphyrin IX-based hemes constitute the major, common portion of the pathway, and other steps leading to specific groups of products can be considered branches off the main axis. Porphobilinogen (PBG) synthase (PBGS; also known as ALA dehydratase) catalyzes the asymmetric condensation of two ALA molecules to form PBG, with the release of two molecules of H2O. Protoporphyrinogen IX oxidase (PPX) catalyzes the removal of six electrons from the tetrapyrrole macrocycle to form protoporphyrin IX in the last biosynthetic step that is common to hemes and chlorophylls. Several lines of evidence converge to support a regulatory model in which the cellular level of available or free protoheme controls the rate of heme synthesis at the level of the first step unique to heme synthesis, the formation of GSA by the action of GTR.

  5. A dynamic periplasmic electron transfer network enables respiratory flexibility beyond a thermodynamic regulatory regime

    PubMed Central

    Sturm, Gunnar; Richter, Katrin; Doetsch, Andreas; Heide, Heinrich; Louro, Ricardo O; Gescher, Johannes

    2015-01-01

    Microorganisms show an astonishing versatility in energy metabolism. They can use a variety of different catabolic electron acceptors, but they use them according to a thermodynamic hierarchy, which is determined by the redox potential of the available electron acceptors. This hierarchy is reflected by a regulatory machinery that leads to the production of respiratory chains in dependence of the availability of the corresponding electron acceptors. In this study, we showed that the γ-proteobacterium Shewanella oneidensis produces several functional electron transfer chains simultaneously. Furthermore, these chains are interconnected, most likely with the aid of c-type cytochromes. The cytochrome pool of a single S. oneidensis cell consists of ca. 700 000 hemes, which are reduced in the absence on an electron acceptor, but can be reoxidized in the presence of a variety of electron acceptors, irrespective of prior growth conditions. The small tetraheme cytochrome (STC) and the soluble heme and flavin containing fumarate reductase FccA have overlapping activity and appear to be important for this electron transfer network. Double deletion mutants showed either delayed growth or no growth with ferric iron, nitrate, dimethyl sulfoxide or fumarate as electron acceptor. We propose that an electron transfer machinery that is produced irrespective of a thermodynamic hierarchy not only enables the organism to quickly release catabolic electrons to a variety of environmental electron acceptors, but also offers a fitness benefit in redox-stratified environments. PMID:25635641

  6. Differential network analysis reveals dysfunctional regulatory networks in gastric carcinogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Mu-Shui; Liu, Bing-Ya; Dai, Wen-Tao; Zhou, Wei-Xin; Li, Yi-Xue; Li, Yuan-Yuan

    2015-01-01

    Gastric Carcinoma is one of the most common cancers in the world. A large number of differentially expressed genes have been identified as being associated with gastric cancer progression, however, little is known about the underlying regulatory mechanisms. To address this problem, we developed a differential networking approach that is characterized by including a nascent methodology, differential coexpression analysis (DCEA), and two novel quantitative methods for differential regulation analysis. We first applied DCEA to a gene expression dataset of gastric normal mucosa, adenoma and carcinoma samples to identify gene interconnection changes during cancer progression, based on which we inferred normal, adenoma, and carcinoma-specific gene regulation networks by using linear regression model. It was observed that cancer genes and drug targets were enriched in each network. To investigate the dynamic changes of gene regulation during carcinogenesis, we then designed two quantitative methods to prioritize differentially regulated genes (DRGs) and gene pairs or links (DRLs) between adjacent stages. It was found that known cancer genes and drug targets are significantly higher ranked. The top 4% normal vs. adenoma DRGs (36 genes) and top 6% adenoma vs. carcinoma DRGs (56 genes) proved to be worthy of further investigation to explore their association with gastric cancer. Out of the 16 DRGs involved in two top-10 DRG lists of normal vs. adenoma and adenoma vs. carcinoma comparisons, 15 have been reported to be gastric cancer or cancer related. Based on our inferred differential networking information and known signaling pathways, we generated testable hypotheses on the roles of GATA6, ESRRG and their signaling pathways in gastric carcinogenesis. Compared with established approaches which build genome-scale GRNs, or sub-networks around differentially expressed genes, the present one proved to be better at enriching cancer genes and drug targets, and prioritizing

  7. Regulatory networks contributing to psoriasis susceptibility.

    PubMed

    Szabó, Kornélia; Bata-Csörgő, Zsuzsanna; Dallos, Attila; Bebes, Attila; Francziszti, László; Dobozy, Attila; Kemény, Lajos; Széll, Márta

    2014-07-01

    The non-involved, healthy-looking skin of psoriatic patients displays inherent characteristics that make it prone to develop typical psoriatic symptoms. Our primary aim was to identify genes and proteins that are differentially regulated in the non-involved psoriatic and the normal epidermis, and to discover regulatory networks responsible for these differences. A cDNA microarray experiment was performed to compare the gene expression profiles of 4 healthy and 4 psoriatic non-involved epidermis samples in response to T-cell lymphokine induction in organotypic cultures. We identified 61 annotated genes and another 11 expressed transcripts that were differentially regulated in the psoriatic tissues. Bioinformatics analysis suggested that the regulation of cell morphology, development and cell death is abnormal, and that the metabolism of small molecules and lipids is differentially regulated in psoriatic epidermis. Our results indicate that one of the early steps of psoriasis pathogenesis may be the abnormal regulation of IL-23A and IL-1B genes in psoriatic keratinocytes.

  8. Caenorhabditis elegans metabolic gene regulatory networks govern the cellular economy.

    PubMed

    Watson, Emma; Walhout, Albertha J M

    2014-10-01

    Diet greatly impacts metabolism in health and disease. In response to the presence or absence of specific nutrients, metabolic gene regulatory networks sense the metabolic state of the cell and regulate metabolic flux accordingly, for instance by the transcriptional control of metabolic enzymes. Here, we discuss recent insights regarding metazoan metabolic regulatory networks using the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans as a model, including the modular organization of metabolic gene regulatory networks, the prominent impact of diet on the transcriptome and metabolome, specialized roles of nuclear hormone receptors (NHRs) in responding to dietary conditions, regulation of metabolic genes and metabolic regulators by miRNAs, and feedback between metabolic genes and their regulators.

  9. Improving gene regulatory network inference using network topology information.

    PubMed

    Nair, Ajay; Chetty, Madhu; Wangikar, Pramod P

    2015-09-01

    Inferring the gene regulatory network (GRN) structure from data is an important problem in computational biology. However, it is a computationally complex problem and approximate methods such as heuristic search techniques, restriction of the maximum-number-of-parents (maxP) for a gene, or an optimal search under special conditions are required. The limitations of a heuristic search are well known but literature on the detailed analysis of the widely used maxP technique is lacking. The optimal search methods require large computational time. We report the theoretical analysis and experimental results of the strengths and limitations of the maxP technique. Further, using an optimal search method, we combine the strengths of the maxP technique and the known GRN topology to propose two novel algorithms. These algorithms are implemented in a Bayesian network framework and tested on biological, realistic, and in silico networks of different sizes and topologies. They overcome the limitations of the maxP technique and show superior computational speed when compared to the current optimal search algorithms.

  10. A regulatory network for coordinated flower maturation.

    PubMed

    Reeves, Paul H; Ellis, Christine M; Ploense, Sara E; Wu, Miin-Feng; Yadav, Vandana; Tholl, Dorothea; Chételat, Aurore; Haupt, Ina; Kennerley, Brian J; Hodgens, Charles; Farmer, Edward E; Nagpal, Punita; Reed, Jason W

    2012-02-01

    For self-pollinating plants to reproduce, male and female organ development must be coordinated as flowers mature. The Arabidopsis transcription factors AUXIN RESPONSE FACTOR 6 (ARF6) and ARF8 regulate this complex process by promoting petal expansion, stamen filament elongation, anther dehiscence, and gynoecium maturation, thereby ensuring that pollen released from the anthers is deposited on the stigma of a receptive gynoecium. ARF6 and ARF8 induce jasmonate production, which in turn triggers expression of MYB21 and MYB24, encoding R2R3 MYB transcription factors that promote petal and stamen growth. To understand the dynamics of this flower maturation regulatory network, we have characterized morphological, chemical, and global gene expression phenotypes of arf, myb, and jasmonate pathway mutant flowers. We found that MYB21 and MYB24 promoted not only petal and stamen development but also gynoecium growth. As well as regulating reproductive competence, both the ARF and MYB factors promoted nectary development or function and volatile sesquiterpene production, which may attract insect pollinators and/or repel pathogens. Mutants lacking jasmonate synthesis or response had decreased MYB21 expression and stamen and petal growth at the stage when flowers normally open, but had increased MYB21 expression in petals of older flowers, resulting in renewed and persistent petal expansion at later stages. Both auxin response and jasmonate synthesis promoted positive feedbacks that may ensure rapid petal and stamen growth as flowers open. MYB21 also fed back negatively on expression of jasmonate biosynthesis pathway genes to decrease flower jasmonate level, which correlated with termination of growth after flowers have opened. These dynamic feedbacks may promote timely, coordinated, and transient growth of flower organs.

  11. Portrait of Candida Species Biofilm Regulatory Network Genes.

    PubMed

    Araújo, Daniela; Henriques, Mariana; Silva, Sónia

    2017-01-01

    Most cases of candidiasis have been attributed to Candida albicans, but Candida glabrata, Candida parapsilosis and Candida tropicalis, designated as non-C. albicans Candida (NCAC), have been identified as frequent human pathogens. Moreover, Candida biofilms are an escalating clinical problem associated with significant rates of mortality. Biofilms have distinct developmental phases, including adhesion/colonisation, maturation and dispersal, controlled by complex regulatory networks. This review discusses recent advances regarding Candida species biofilm regulatory network genes, which are key components for candidiasis.

  12. Variable neighborhood search for reverse engineering of gene regulatory networks.

    PubMed

    Nicholson, Charles; Goodwin, Leslie; Clark, Corey

    2017-01-01

    A new search heuristic, Divided Neighborhood Exploration Search, designed to be used with inference algorithms such as Bayesian networks to improve on the reverse engineering of gene regulatory networks is presented. The approach systematically moves through the search space to find topologies representative of gene regulatory networks that are more likely to explain microarray data. In empirical testing it is demonstrated that the novel method is superior to the widely employed greedy search techniques in both the quality of the inferred networks and computational time.

  13. Network component analysis: reconstruction of regulatory signals in biological systems.

    PubMed

    Liao, James C; Boscolo, Riccardo; Yang, Young-Lyeol; Tran, Linh My; Sabatti, Chiara; Roychowdhury, Vwani P

    2003-12-23

    High-dimensional data sets generated by high-throughput technologies, such as DNA microarray, are often the outputs of complex networked systems driven by hidden regulatory signals. Traditional statistical methods for computing low-dimensional or hidden representations of these data sets, such as principal component analysis and independent component analysis, ignore the underlying network structures and provide decompositions based purely on a priori statistical constraints on the computed component signals. The resulting decomposition thus provides a phenomenological model for the observed data and does not necessarily contain physically or biologically meaningful signals. Here, we develop a method, called network component analysis, for uncovering hidden regulatory signals from outputs of networked systems, when only a partial knowledge of the underlying network topology is available. The a priori network structure information is first tested for compliance with a set of identifiability criteria. For networks that satisfy the criteria, the signals from the regulatory nodes and their strengths of influence on each output node can be faithfully reconstructed. This method is first validated experimentally by using the absorbance spectra of a network of various hemoglobin species. The method is then applied to microarray data generated from yeast Saccharamyces cerevisiae and the activities of various transcription factors during cell cycle are reconstructed by using recently discovered connectivity information for the underlying transcriptional regulatory networks.

  14. Mapping the Regulatory Network for Salmonella enterica Serovar Typhimurium Invasion

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Carol; Stringer, Anne M.; Mao, Chunhong; Palumbo, Michael J.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Salmonella enterica pathogenicity island 1 (SPI-1) encodes proteins required for invasion of gut epithelial cells. The timing of invasion is tightly controlled by a complex regulatory network. The transcription factor (TF) HilD is the master regulator of this process and senses environmental signals associated with invasion. HilD activates transcription of genes within and outside SPI-1, including six other TFs. Thus, the transcriptional program associated with host cell invasion is controlled by at least 7 TFs. However, very few of the regulatory targets are known for these TFs, and the extent of the regulatory network is unclear. In this study, we used complementary genomic approaches to map the direct regulatory targets of all 7 TFs. Our data reveal a highly complex and interconnected network that includes many previously undescribed regulatory targets. Moreover, the network extends well beyond the 7 TFs, due to the inclusion of many additional TFs and noncoding RNAs. By comparing gene expression profiles of regulatory targets for the 7 TFs, we identified many uncharacterized genes that are likely to play direct roles in invasion. We also uncovered cross talk between SPI-1 regulation and other regulatory pathways, which, in turn, identified gene clusters that likely share related functions. Our data are freely available through an intuitive online browser and represent a valuable resource for the bacterial research community. PMID:27601571

  15. Optimal finite horizon control in gene regulatory networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Qiuli

    2013-06-01

    As a paradigm for modeling gene regulatory networks, probabilistic Boolean networks (PBNs) form a subclass of Markov genetic regulatory networks. To date, many different stochastic optimal control approaches have been developed to find therapeutic intervention strategies for PBNs. A PBN is essentially a collection of constituent Boolean networks via a probability structure. Most of the existing works assume that the probability structure for Boolean networks selection is known. Such an assumption cannot be satisfied in practice since the presence of noise prevents the probability structure from being accurately determined. In this paper, we treat a case in which we lack the governing probability structure for Boolean network selection. Specifically, in the framework of PBNs, the theory of finite horizon Markov decision process is employed to find optimal constituent Boolean networks with respect to the defined objective functions. In order to illustrate the validity of our proposed approach, an example is also displayed.

  16. Electricity distribution networks: Changing regulatory approaches

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cambini, Carlo

    2016-09-01

    Increasing the penetration of distributed generation and smart grid technologies requires substantial investments. A study proposes an innovative approach that combines four regulatory tools to provide economic incentives for distribution system operators to facilitate these innovative practices.

  17. High Affinity Heme Binding to a Heme Regulatory Motif on the Nuclear Receptor Rev-erbβ Leads to Its Degradation and Indirectly Regulates Its Interaction with Nuclear Receptor Corepressor.

    PubMed

    Carter, Eric L; Gupta, Nirupama; Ragsdale, Stephen W

    2016-01-29

    Rev-erbα and Rev-erbβ are heme-binding nuclear receptors (NR) that repress the transcription of genes involved in regulating metabolism, inflammation, and the circadian clock. Previous gene expression and co-immunoprecipitation studies led to a model in which heme binding to Rev-erbα recruits nuclear receptor corepressor 1 (NCoR1) into an active repressor complex. However, in contradiction, biochemical and crystallographic studies have shown that heme decreases the affinity of the ligand-binding domain of Rev-erb NRs for NCoR1 peptides. One explanation for this discrepancy is that the ligand-binding domain and NCoR1 peptides used for in vitro studies cannot replicate the key features of the full-length proteins used in cellular studies. However, the combined in vitro and cellular results described here demonstrate that heme does not directly promote interactions between full-length Rev-erbβ (FLRev-erbβ) and an NCoR1 construct encompassing all three NR interaction domains. NCoR1 tightly binds both apo- and heme-replete FLRev-erbβ·DNA complexes; furthermore, heme, at high concentrations, destabilizes the FLRev-erbβ·NCoR1 complex. The interaction between FLRev-erbβ and NCoR1 as well as Rev-erbβ repression at the Bmal1 promoter appear to be modulated by another cellular factor(s), at least one of which is related to the ubiquitin-proteasome pathway. Our studies suggest that heme is involved in regulating the degradation of Rev-erbβ in a manner consistent with its role in circadian rhythm maintenance. Finally, the very slow rate constant (10(-6) s(-1)) of heme dissociation from Rev-erbβ rules out a prior proposal that Rev-erbβ acts as an intracellular heme sensor.

  18. High Affinity Heme Binding to a Heme Regulatory Motif on the Nuclear Receptor Rev-erbβ Leads to Its Degradation and Indirectly Regulates Its Interaction with Nuclear Receptor Corepressor*

    PubMed Central

    Carter, Eric L.; Gupta, Nirupama; Ragsdale, Stephen W.

    2016-01-01

    Rev-erbα and Rev-erbβ are heme-binding nuclear receptors (NR) that repress the transcription of genes involved in regulating metabolism, inflammation, and the circadian clock. Previous gene expression and co-immunoprecipitation studies led to a model in which heme binding to Rev-erbα recruits nuclear receptor corepressor 1 (NCoR1) into an active repressor complex. However, in contradiction, biochemical and crystallographic studies have shown that heme decreases the affinity of the ligand-binding domain of Rev-erb NRs for NCoR1 peptides. One explanation for this discrepancy is that the ligand-binding domain and NCoR1 peptides used for in vitro studies cannot replicate the key features of the full-length proteins used in cellular studies. However, the combined in vitro and cellular results described here demonstrate that heme does not directly promote interactions between full-length Rev-erbβ (FLRev-erbβ) and an NCoR1 construct encompassing all three NR interaction domains. NCoR1 tightly binds both apo- and heme-replete FLRev-erbβ·DNA complexes; furthermore, heme, at high concentrations, destabilizes the FLRev-erbβ·NCoR1 complex. The interaction between FLRev-erbβ and NCoR1 as well as Rev-erbβ repression at the Bmal1 promoter appear to be modulated by another cellular factor(s), at least one of which is related to the ubiquitin-proteasome pathway. Our studies suggest that heme is involved in regulating the degradation of Rev-erbβ in a manner consistent with its role in circadian rhythm maintenance. Finally, the very slow rate constant (10−6 s−1) of heme dissociation from Rev-erbβ rules out a prior proposal that Rev-erbβ acts as an intracellular heme sensor. PMID:26670607

  19. Towards a predictive theory for genetic regulatory networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tkacik, Gasper

    When cells respond to changes in the environment by regulating the expression levels of their genes, we often draw parallels between these biological processes and engineered information processing systems. One can go beyond this qualitative analogy, however, by analyzing information transmission in biochemical ``hardware'' using Shannon's information theory. Here, gene regulation is viewed as a transmission channel operating under restrictive constraints set by the resource costs and intracellular noise. We present a series of results demonstrating that a theory of information transmission in genetic regulatory circuits feasibly yields non-trivial, testable predictions. These predictions concern strategies by which individual gene regulatory elements, e.g., promoters or enhancers, read out their signals; as well as strategies by which small networks of genes, independently or in spatially coupled settings, respond to their inputs. These predictions can be quantitatively compared to the known regulatory networks and their function, and can elucidate how reproducible biological processes, such as embryonic development, can be orchestrated by networks built out of noisy components. Preliminary successes in the gap gene network of the fruit fly Drosophila indicate that a full ab initio theoretical prediction of a regulatory network is possible, a feat that has not yet been achieved for any real regulatory network. We end by describing open challenges on the path towards such a prediction.

  20. Heme Oxygenase-1-Expressing Dendritic Cells Promote Foxp3+ Regulatory T Cell Differentiation and Induce Less Severe Airway Inflammation in Murine Models

    PubMed Central

    Gau, Rung-Jiun; Yen, Jeng-Hsien; Suen, Jau-Ling

    2016-01-01

    Dendritic cells (DCs) are critical for instructing immune responses toward inflammatory or anti-inflammatory status. Heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) is known for its cytoprotective effect against oxidative stress and inflammation, suggesting its immune regulatory role in allergic lung inflammation. HO-1 has been implicated in affecting DC maturation; however, its role in DC-mediated T-cell differentiation is unclear. In this study, we demonstrated that HO-1-expressing bone marrow-derived dendritic cells (BM-DCs) displayed tolerogenic phenotypes, including their resistance to lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced maturation, high level expression of IL-10, and low T-cell stimulatory activity. In addition, HO-1-expressing DCs were able to induce antigen-specific Foxp3+ regulatory T cells (Treg) differentiation in vitro and in vivo. Also, HO-1-expressing DCs modulated the severity of lung inflammatory responses in two murine models of airway inflammation. This study provided evidence supporting the role of HO-1-expressing DCs in tolerance induction and as a potential therapeutic target for allergic asthma as well as other inflammatory diseases. PMID:28033400

  1. Phenotype accessibility and noise in random threshold gene regulatory networks.

    PubMed

    Pinho, Ricardo; Garcia, Victor; Feldman, Marcus W

    2014-01-01

    Evolution requires phenotypic variation in a population of organisms for selection to function. Gene regulatory processes involved in organismal development affect the phenotypic diversity of organisms. Since only a fraction of all possible phenotypes are predicted to be accessed by the end of development, organisms may evolve strategies to use environmental cues and noise-like fluctuations to produce additional phenotypic diversity, and hence to enhance the speed of adaptation. We used a generic model of organismal development --gene regulatory networks-- to investigate how different levels of noise on gene expression states (i.e. phenotypes) may affect access to new, unique phenotypes, thereby affecting phenotypic diversity. We studied additional strategies that organisms might adopt to attain larger phenotypic diversity: either by augmenting their genome or the number of gene expression states. This was done for different types of gene regulatory networks that allow for distinct levels of regulatory influence on gene expression or are more likely to give rise to stable phenotypes. We found that if gene expression is binary, increasing noise levels generally decreases phenotype accessibility for all network types studied. If more gene expression states are considered, noise can moderately enhance the speed of discovery if three or four gene expression states are allowed, and if there are enough distinct regulatory networks in the population. These results were independent of the network types analyzed, and were robust to different implementations of noise. Hence, for noise to increase the number of accessible phenotypes in gene regulatory networks, very specific conditions need to be satisfied. If the number of distinct regulatory networks involved in organismal development is large enough, and the acquisition of more genes or fine tuning of their expression states proves costly to the organism, noise can be useful in allowing access to more unique phenotypes.

  2. Time-Delayed Models of Gene Regulatory Networks

    PubMed Central

    Parmar, K.; Blyuss, K. B.; Kyrychko, Y. N.; Hogan, S. J.

    2015-01-01

    We discuss different mathematical models of gene regulatory networks as relevant to the onset and development of cancer. After discussion of alternative modelling approaches, we use a paradigmatic two-gene network to focus on the role played by time delays in the dynamics of gene regulatory networks. We contrast the dynamics of the reduced model arising in the limit of fast mRNA dynamics with that of the full model. The review concludes with the discussion of some open problems. PMID:26576197

  3. Systems Approaches to Identifying Gene Regulatory Networks in Plants

    PubMed Central

    Long, Terri A.; Brady, Siobhan M.; Benfey, Philip N.

    2009-01-01

    Complex gene regulatory networks are composed of genes, noncoding RNAs, proteins, metabolites, and signaling components. The availability of genome-wide mutagenesis libraries; large-scale transcriptome, proteome, and metabalome data sets; and new high-throughput methods that uncover protein interactions underscores the need for mathematical modeling techniques that better enable scientists to synthesize these large amounts of information and to understand the properties of these biological systems. Systems biology approaches can allow researchers to move beyond a reductionist approach and to both integrate and comprehend the interactions of multiple components within these systems. Descriptive and mathematical models for gene regulatory networks can reveal emergent properties of these plant systems. This review highlights methods that researchers are using to obtain large-scale data sets, and examples of gene regulatory networks modeled with these data. Emergent properties revealed by the use of these network models and perspectives on the future of systems biology are discussed. PMID:18616425

  4. Robustness and Accuracy in Sea Urchin Developmental Gene Regulatory Networks.

    PubMed

    Ben-Tabou de-Leon, Smadar

    2016-01-01

    Developmental gene regulatory networks robustly control the timely activation of regulatory and differentiation genes. The structure of these networks underlies their capacity to buffer intrinsic and extrinsic noise and maintain embryonic morphology. Here I illustrate how the use of specific architectures by the sea urchin developmental regulatory networks enables the robust control of cell fate decisions. The Wnt-βcatenin signaling pathway patterns the primary embryonic axis while the BMP signaling pathway patterns the secondary embryonic axis in the sea urchin embryo and across bilateria. Interestingly, in the sea urchin in both cases, the signaling pathway that defines the axis controls directly the expression of a set of downstream regulatory genes. I propose that this direct activation of a set of regulatory genes enables a uniform regulatory response and a clear cut cell fate decision in the endoderm and in the dorsal ectoderm. The specification of the mesodermal pigment cell lineage is activated by Delta signaling that initiates a triple positive feedback loop that locks down the pigment specification state. I propose that the use of compound positive feedback circuitry provides the endodermal cells enough time to turn off mesodermal genes and ensures correct mesoderm vs. endoderm fate decision. Thus, I argue that understanding the control properties of repeatedly used regulatory architectures illuminates their role in embryogenesis and provides possible explanations to their resistance to evolutionary change.

  5. Efficient reverse-engineering of a developmental gene regulatory network.

    PubMed

    Crombach, Anton; Wotton, Karl R; Cicin-Sain, Damjan; Ashyraliyev, Maksat; Jaeger, Johannes

    2012-01-01

    Understanding the complex regulatory networks underlying development and evolution of multi-cellular organisms is a major problem in biology. Computational models can be used as tools to extract the regulatory structure and dynamics of such networks from gene expression data. This approach is called reverse engineering. It has been successfully applied to many gene networks in various biological systems. However, to reconstitute the structure and non-linear dynamics of a developmental gene network in its spatial context remains a considerable challenge. Here, we address this challenge using a case study: the gap gene network involved in segment determination during early development of Drosophila melanogaster. A major problem for reverse-engineering pattern-forming networks is the significant amount of time and effort required to acquire and quantify spatial gene expression data. We have developed a simplified data processing pipeline that considerably increases the throughput of the method, but results in data of reduced accuracy compared to those previously used for gap gene network inference. We demonstrate that we can infer the correct network structure using our reduced data set, and investigate minimal data requirements for successful reverse engineering. Our results show that timing and position of expression domain boundaries are the crucial features for determining regulatory network structure from data, while it is less important to precisely measure expression levels. Based on this, we define minimal data requirements for gap gene network inference. Our results demonstrate the feasibility of reverse-engineering with much reduced experimental effort. This enables more widespread use of the method in different developmental contexts and organisms. Such systematic application of data-driven models to real-world networks has enormous potential. Only the quantitative investigation of a large number of developmental gene regulatory networks will allow us to

  6. Efficient Reverse-Engineering of a Developmental Gene Regulatory Network

    PubMed Central

    Cicin-Sain, Damjan; Ashyraliyev, Maksat; Jaeger, Johannes

    2012-01-01

    Understanding the complex regulatory networks underlying development and evolution of multi-cellular organisms is a major problem in biology. Computational models can be used as tools to extract the regulatory structure and dynamics of such networks from gene expression data. This approach is called reverse engineering. It has been successfully applied to many gene networks in various biological systems. However, to reconstitute the structure and non-linear dynamics of a developmental gene network in its spatial context remains a considerable challenge. Here, we address this challenge using a case study: the gap gene network involved in segment determination during early development of Drosophila melanogaster. A major problem for reverse-engineering pattern-forming networks is the significant amount of time and effort required to acquire and quantify spatial gene expression data. We have developed a simplified data processing pipeline that considerably increases the throughput of the method, but results in data of reduced accuracy compared to those previously used for gap gene network inference. We demonstrate that we can infer the correct network structure using our reduced data set, and investigate minimal data requirements for successful reverse engineering. Our results show that timing and position of expression domain boundaries are the crucial features for determining regulatory network structure from data, while it is less important to precisely measure expression levels. Based on this, we define minimal data requirements for gap gene network inference. Our results demonstrate the feasibility of reverse-engineering with much reduced experimental effort. This enables more widespread use of the method in different developmental contexts and organisms. Such systematic application of data-driven models to real-world networks has enormous potential. Only the quantitative investigation of a large number of developmental gene regulatory networks will allow us to

  7. A gene regulatory network controlling the embryonic specification of endoderm.

    PubMed

    Peter, Isabelle S; Davidson, Eric H

    2011-05-29

    Specification of endoderm is the prerequisite for gut formation in the embryogenesis of bilaterian organisms. Modern lineage labelling studies have shown that in the sea urchin embryo model system, descendants of the veg1 and veg2 cell lineages produce the endoderm, and that the veg2 lineage also gives rise to mesodermal cell types. It is known that Wnt/β-catenin signalling is required for endoderm specification and Delta/Notch signalling is required for mesoderm specification. Some direct cis-regulatory targets of these signals have been found and various phenomenological patterns of gene expression have been observed in the pre-gastrular endomesoderm. However, no comprehensive, causal explanation of endoderm specification has been conceived for sea urchins, nor for any other deuterostome. Here we propose a model, on the basis of the underlying genomic control system, that provides such an explanation, built at several levels of biological organization. The hardwired core of the control system consists of the cis-regulatory apparatus of endodermal regulatory genes, which determine the relationship between the inputs to which these genes are exposed and their outputs. The architecture of the network circuitry controlling the dynamic process of endoderm specification then explains, at the system level, a sequence of developmental logic operations, which generate the biological process. The control system initiates non-interacting endodermal and mesodermal gene regulatory networks in veg2-derived cells and extinguishes the endodermal gene regulatory network in mesodermal precursors. It also generates a cross-regulatory network that specifies future anterior endoderm in veg2 descendants and institutes a distinct network specifying posterior endoderm in veg1-derived cells. The network model provides an explanatory framework that relates endoderm specification to the genomic regulatory code.

  8. Relationships between probabilistic Boolean networks and dynamic Bayesian networks as models of gene regulatory networks

    PubMed Central

    Lähdesmäki, Harri; Hautaniemi, Sampsa; Shmulevich, Ilya; Yli-Harja, Olli

    2006-01-01

    A significant amount of attention has recently been focused on modeling of gene regulatory networks. Two frequently used large-scale modeling frameworks are Bayesian networks (BNs) and Boolean networks, the latter one being a special case of its recent stochastic extension, probabilistic Boolean networks (PBNs). PBN is a promising model class that generalizes the standard rule-based interactions of Boolean networks into the stochastic setting. Dynamic Bayesian networks (DBNs) is a general and versatile model class that is able to represent complex temporal stochastic processes and has also been proposed as a model for gene regulatory systems. In this paper, we concentrate on these two model classes and demonstrate that PBNs and a certain subclass of DBNs can represent the same joint probability distribution over their common variables. The major benefit of introducing the relationships between the models is that it opens up the possibility of applying the standard tools of DBNs to PBNs and vice versa. Hence, the standard learning tools of DBNs can be applied in the context of PBNs, and the inference methods give a natural way of handling the missing values in PBNs which are often present in gene expression measurements. Conversely, the tools for controlling the stationary behavior of the networks, tools for projecting networks onto sub-networks, and efficient learning schemes can be used for DBNs. In other words, the introduced relationships between the models extend the collection of analysis tools for both model classes. PMID:17415411

  9. Gene regulatory networks modelling using a dynamic evolutionary hybrid

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Inference of gene regulatory networks is a key goal in the quest for understanding fundamental cellular processes and revealing underlying relations among genes. With the availability of gene expression data, computational methods aiming at regulatory networks reconstruction are facing challenges posed by the data's high dimensionality, temporal dynamics or measurement noise. We propose an approach based on a novel multi-layer evolutionary trained neuro-fuzzy recurrent network (ENFRN) that is able to select potential regulators of target genes and describe their regulation type. Results The recurrent, self-organizing structure and evolutionary training of our network yield an optimized pool of regulatory relations, while its fuzzy nature avoids noise-related problems. Furthermore, we are able to assign scores for each regulation, highlighting the confidence in the retrieved relations. The approach was tested by applying it to several benchmark datasets of yeast, managing to acquire biologically validated relations among genes. Conclusions The results demonstrate the effectiveness of the ENFRN in retrieving biologically valid regulatory relations and providing meaningful insights for better understanding the dynamics of gene regulatory networks. The algorithms and methods described in this paper have been implemented in a Matlab toolbox and are available from: http://bioserver-1.bioacademy.gr/DataRepository/Project_ENFRN_GRN/. PMID:20298548

  10. Genomic reconstruction of transcriptional regulatory networks in lactic acid bacteria

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Genome scale annotation of regulatory interactions and reconstruction of regulatory networks are the crucial problems in bacterial genomics. The Lactobacillales order of bacteria collates various microorganisms having a large economic impact, including both human and animal pathogens and strains used in the food industry. Nonetheless, no systematic genome-wide analysis of transcriptional regulation has been previously made for this taxonomic group. Results A comparative genomics approach was used for reconstruction of transcriptional regulatory networks in 30 selected genomes of lactic acid bacteria. The inferred networks comprise regulons for 102 orthologous transcription factors (TFs), including 47 novel regulons for previously uncharacterized TFs. Numerous differences between regulatory networks of the Streptococcaceae and Lactobacillaceae groups were described on several levels. The two groups are characterized by substantially different sets of TFs encoded in their genomes. Content of the inferred regulons and structure of their cognate TF binding motifs differ for many orthologous TFs between the two groups. Multiple cases of non-orthologous displacements of TFs that control specific metabolic pathways were reported. Conclusions The reconstructed regulatory networks substantially expand the existing knowledge of transcriptional regulation in lactic acid bacteria. In each of 30 studied genomes the obtained regulatory network contains on average 36 TFs and 250 target genes that are mostly involved in carbohydrate metabolism, stress response, metal homeostasis and amino acids biosynthesis. The inferred networks can be used for genetic experiments, functional annotations of genes, metabolic reconstruction and evolutionary analysis. All reconstructed regulons are captured within the Streptococcaceae and Lactobacillaceae collections in the RegPrecise database (http://regprecise.lbl.gov). PMID:23398941

  11. Inferring slowly-changing dynamic gene-regulatory networks

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Dynamic gene-regulatory networks are complex since the interaction patterns between their components mean that it is impossible to study parts of the network in separation. This holistic character of gene-regulatory networks poses a real challenge to any type of modelling. Graphical models are a class of models that connect the network with a conditional independence relationships between random variables. By interpreting these random variables as gene activities and the conditional independence relationships as functional non-relatedness, graphical models have been used to describe gene-regulatory networks. Whereas the literature has been focused on static networks, most time-course experiments are designed in order to tease out temporal changes in the underlying network. It is typically reasonable to assume that changes in genomic networks are few, because biological systems tend to be stable. We introduce a new model for estimating slow changes in dynamic gene-regulatory networks, which is suitable for high-dimensional data, e.g. time-course microarray data. Our aim is to estimate a dynamically changing genomic network based on temporal activity measurements of the genes in the network. Our method is based on the penalized likelihood with ℓ1-norm, that penalizes conditional dependencies between genes as well as differences between conditional independence elements across time points. We also present a heuristic search strategy to find optimal tuning parameters. We re-write the penalized maximum likelihood problem into a standard convex optimization problem subject to linear equality constraints. We show that our method performs well in simulation studies. Finally, we apply the proposed model to a time-course T-cell dataset. PMID:25917062

  12. Stability Depends on Positive Autoregulation in Boolean Gene Regulatory Networks

    PubMed Central

    Pinho, Ricardo; Garcia, Victor; Irimia, Manuel; Feldman, Marcus W.

    2014-01-01

    Network motifs have been identified as building blocks of regulatory networks, including gene regulatory networks (GRNs). The most basic motif, autoregulation, has been associated with bistability (when positive) and with homeostasis and robustness to noise (when negative), but its general importance in network behavior is poorly understood. Moreover, how specific autoregulatory motifs are selected during evolution and how this relates to robustness is largely unknown. Here, we used a class of GRN models, Boolean networks, to investigate the relationship between autoregulation and network stability and robustness under various conditions. We ran evolutionary simulation experiments for different models of selection, including mutation and recombination. Each generation simulated the development of a population of organisms modeled by GRNs. We found that stability and robustness positively correlate with autoregulation; in all investigated scenarios, stable networks had mostly positive autoregulation. Assuming biological networks correspond to stable networks, these results suggest that biological networks should often be dominated by positive autoregulatory loops. This seems to be the case for most studied eukaryotic transcription factor networks, including those in yeast, flies and mammals. PMID:25375153

  13. Gene regulatory networks and their applications: understanding biological and medical problems in terms of networks

    PubMed Central

    Emmert-Streib, Frank; Dehmer, Matthias; Haibe-Kains, Benjamin

    2014-01-01

    In recent years gene regulatory networks (GRNs) have attracted a lot of interest and many methods have been introduced for their statistical inference from gene expression data. However, despite their popularity, GRNs are widely misunderstood. For this reason, we provide in this paper a general discussion and perspective of gene regulatory networks. Specifically, we discuss their meaning, the consistency among different network inference methods, ensemble methods, the assessment of GRNs, the estimated number of existing GRNs and their usage in different application domains. Furthermore, we discuss open questions and necessary steps in order to utilize gene regulatory networks in a clinical context and for personalized medicine. PMID:25364745

  14. Modelling gene and protein regulatory networks with answer set programming.

    PubMed

    Fayruzov, Timur; Janssen, Jeroen; Vermeir, Dirk; Cornelis, Chris; De Cock, Martine

    2011-01-01

    Recently, many approaches to model regulatory networks have been proposed in the systems biology domain. However, the task is far from being solved. In this paper, we propose an Answer Set Programming (ASP)-based approach to model interaction networks. We build a general ASP framework that describes the network semantics and allows modelling specific networks with little effort. ASP provides a rich and flexible toolbox that allows expanding the framework with desired features. In this paper, we tune our framework to mimic Boolean network behaviour and apply it to model the Budding Yeast and Fission Yeast cell cycle networks. The obtained steady states of these networks correspond to those of the Boolean networks.

  15. Characterizing regulatory path motifs in integrated networks using perturbational data

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    We introduce Pathicular http://bioinformatics.psb.ugent.be/software/details/Pathicular, a Cytoscape plugin for studying the cellular response to perturbations of transcription factors by integrating perturbational expression data with transcriptional, protein-protein and phosphorylation networks. Pathicular searches for 'regulatory path motifs', short paths in the integrated physical networks which occur significantly more often than expected between transcription factors and their targets in the perturbational data. A case study in Saccharomyces cerevisiae identifies eight regulatory path motifs and demonstrates their biological significance. PMID:20230615

  16. Learning gene regulatory networks from next generation sequencing data.

    PubMed

    Jia, Bochao; Xu, Suwa; Xiao, Guanghua; Lamba, Vishal; Liang, Faming

    2017-03-10

    In recent years, next generation sequencing (NGS) has gradually replaced microarray as the major platform in measuring gene expressions. Compared to microarray, NGS has many advantages, such as less noise and higher throughput. However, the discreteness of NGS data also challenges the existing statistical methodology. In particular, there still lacks an appropriate statistical method for reconstructing gene regulatory networks using NGS data in the literature. The existing local Poisson graphical model method is not consistent and can only infer certain local structures of the network. In this article, we propose a random effect model-based transformation to continuize NGS data and then we transform the continuized data to Gaussian via a semiparametric transformation and apply an equivalent partial correlation selection method to reconstruct gene regulatory networks. The proposed method is consistent. The numerical results indicate that the proposed method can lead to much more accurate inference of gene regulatory networks than the local Poisson graphical model and other existing methods. The proposed data-continuized transformation fills the theoretical gap for how to transform discrete data to continuous data and facilitates NGS data analysis. The proposed data-continuized transformation also makes it feasible to integrate different types of data, such as microarray and RNA-seq data, in reconstruction of gene regulatory networks.

  17. Statistical inference of regulatory networks for circadian regulation.

    PubMed

    Aderhold, Andrej; Husmeier, Dirk; Grzegorczyk, Marco

    2014-06-01

    We assess the accuracy of various state-of-the-art statistics and machine learning methods for reconstructing gene and protein regulatory networks in the context of circadian regulation. Our study draws on the increasing availability of gene expression and protein concentration time series for key circadian clock components in Arabidopsis thaliana. In addition, gene expression and protein concentration time series are simulated from a recently published regulatory network of the circadian clock in A. thaliana, in which protein and gene interactions are described by a Markov jump process based on Michaelis-Menten kinetics. We closely follow recent experimental protocols, including the entrainment of seedlings to different light-dark cycles and the knock-out of various key regulatory genes. Our study provides relative network reconstruction accuracy scores for a critical comparative performance evaluation, and sheds light on a series of highly relevant questions: it quantifies the influence of systematically missing values related to unknown protein concentrations and mRNA transcription rates, it investigates the dependence of the performance on the network topology and the degree of recurrency, it provides deeper insight into when and why non-linear methods fail to outperform linear ones, it offers improved guidelines on parameter settings in different inference procedures, and it suggests new hypotheses about the structure of the central circadian gene regulatory network in A. thaliana.

  18. Recurrent rewiring and emergence of RNA regulatory networks.

    PubMed

    Wilinski, Daniel; Buter, Natascha; Klocko, Andrew D; Lapointe, Christopher P; Selker, Eric U; Gasch, Audrey P; Wickens, Marvin

    2017-04-04

    Alterations in regulatory networks contribute to evolutionary change. Transcriptional networks are reconfigured by changes in the binding specificity of transcription factors and their cognate sites. The evolution of RNA-protein regulatory networks is far less understood. The PUF (Pumilio and FBF) family of RNA regulatory proteins controls the translation, stability, and movements of hundreds of mRNAs in a single species. We probe the evolution of PUF-RNA networks by direct identification of the mRNAs bound to PUF proteins in budding and filamentous fungi and by computational analyses of orthologous RNAs from 62 fungal species. Our findings reveal that PUF proteins gain and lose mRNAs with related and emergent biological functions during evolution. We demonstrate at least two independent rewiring events for PUF3 orthologs, independent but convergent evolution of PUF4/5 binding specificity and the rewiring of the PUF4/5 regulons in different fungal lineages. These findings demonstrate plasticity in RNA regulatory networks and suggest ways in which their rewiring occurs.

  19. Reverse engineering of gene regulatory networks: a comparative study.

    PubMed

    Hache, Hendrik; Lehrach, Hans; Herwig, Ralf

    2009-01-01

    Reverse engineering of gene regulatory networks has been an intensively studied topic in bioinformatics since it constitutes an intermediate step from explorative to causative gene expression analysis. Many methods have been proposed through recent years leading to a wide range of mathematical approaches. In practice, different mathematical approaches will generate different resulting network structures, thus, it is very important for users to assess the performance of these algorithms. We have conducted a comparative study with six different reverse engineering methods, including relevance networks, neural networks, and Bayesian networks. Our approach consists of the generation of defined benchmark data, the analysis of these data with the different methods, and the assessment of algorithmic performances by statistical analyses. Performance was judged by network size and noise levels. The results of the comparative study highlight the neural network approach as best performing method among those under study.

  20. Dynamics of regulatory networks in gastrin-treated adenocarcinoma cells.

    PubMed

    Doni Jayavelu, Naresh; Bar, Nadav

    2014-01-01

    Understanding gene transcription regulatory networks is critical to deciphering the molecular mechanisms of different cellular states. Most studies focus on static transcriptional networks. In the current study, we used the gastrin-regulated system as a model to understand the dynamics of transcriptional networks composed of transcription factors (TFs) and target genes (TGs). The hormone gastrin activates and stimulates signaling pathways leading to various cellular states through transcriptional programs. Dysregulation of gastrin can result in cancerous tumors, for example. However, the regulatory networks involving gastrin are highly complex, and the roles of most of the components of these networks are unknown. We used time series microarray data of AR42J adenocarcinoma cells treated with gastrin combined with static TF-TG relationships integrated from different sources, and we reconstructed the dynamic activities of TFs using network component analysis (NCA). Based on the peak expression of TGs and activity of TFs, we created active sub-networks at four time ranges after gastrin treatment, namely immediate-early (IE), mid-early (ME), mid-late (ML) and very late (VL). Network analysis revealed that the active sub-networks were topologically different at the early and late time ranges. Gene ontology analysis unveiled that each active sub-network was highly enriched in a particular biological process. Interestingly, network motif patterns were also distinct between the sub-networks. This analysis can be applied to other time series microarray datasets, focusing on smaller sub-networks that are activated in a cascade, allowing better overview of the mechanisms involved at each time range.

  1. Reconstructing prokaryotic transcriptional regulatory networks: lessons from actinobacteria

    PubMed Central

    Venancio, Thiago M; Aravind, L

    2009-01-01

    Reconstruction of transcriptional regulatory networks of uncharacterized bacteria is a main challenge for the post-genomic era. Recent studies, including one in BMC Systems Biology, address this problem in the relatively underexplored actinobacteria clade, which includes major pathogenic and economically relevant taxa. PMID:19435474

  2. Compartmentalized gene regulatory network of the pathogenic fungus Fusarium graminearum

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Head blight caused by Fusarium graminearum (Fg) is a major limiting factor of wheat production with both yield loss and mycotoxin contamination. Here we report a model for global Fg gene regulatory networks (GRNs) inferred from a large collection of transcriptomic data using a machine-learning appro...

  3. Multilevel modeling for inference of genetic regulatory networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ng, Shu-Kay; Wang, Kui; McLachlan, Geoffrey J.

    2005-12-01

    Time-course experiments with microarrays are often used to study dynamic biological systems and genetic regulatory networks (GRNs) that model how genes influence each other in cell-level development of organisms. The inference for GRNs provides important insights into the fundamental biological processes such as growth and is useful in disease diagnosis and genomic drug design. Due to the experimental design, multilevel data hierarchies are often present in time-course gene expression data. Most existing methods, however, ignore the dependency of the expression measurements over time and the correlation among gene expression profiles. Such independence assumptions violate regulatory interactions and can result in overlooking certain important subject effects and lead to spurious inference for regulatory networks or mechanisms. In this paper, a multilevel mixed-effects model is adopted to incorporate data hierarchies in the analysis of time-course data, where temporal and subject effects are both assumed to be random. The method starts with the clustering of genes by fitting the mixture model within the multilevel random-effects model framework using the expectation-maximization (EM) algorithm. The network of regulatory interactions is then determined by searching for regulatory control elements (activators and inhibitors) shared by the clusters of co-expressed genes, based on a time-lagged correlation coefficients measurement. The method is applied to two real time-course datasets from the budding yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) genome. It is shown that the proposed method provides clusters of cell-cycle regulated genes that are supported by existing gene function annotations, and hence enables inference on regulatory interactions for the genetic network.

  4. Fused Regression for Multi-source Gene Regulatory Network Inference

    PubMed Central

    Lam, Kari Y.; Westrick, Zachary M.; Müller, Christian L.; Christiaen, Lionel; Bonneau, Richard

    2016-01-01

    Understanding gene regulatory networks is critical to understanding cellular differentiation and response to external stimuli. Methods for global network inference have been developed and applied to a variety of species. Most approaches consider the problem of network inference independently in each species, despite evidence that gene regulation can be conserved even in distantly related species. Further, network inference is often confined to single data-types (single platforms) and single cell types. We introduce a method for multi-source network inference that allows simultaneous estimation of gene regulatory networks in multiple species or biological processes through the introduction of priors based on known gene relationships such as orthology incorporated using fused regression. This approach improves network inference performance even when orthology mapping and conservation are incomplete. We refine this method by presenting an algorithm that extracts the true conserved subnetwork from a larger set of potentially conserved interactions and demonstrate the utility of our method in cross species network inference. Last, we demonstrate our method’s utility in learning from data collected on different experimental platforms. PMID:27923054

  5. Genomic analysis of regulatory network dynamics reveals large topological changes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luscombe, Nicholas M.; Madan Babu, M.; Yu, Haiyuan; Snyder, Michael; Teichmann, Sarah A.; Gerstein, Mark

    2004-09-01

    Network analysis has been applied widely, providing a unifying language to describe disparate systems ranging from social interactions to power grids. It has recently been used in molecular biology, but so far the resulting networks have only been analysed statically. Here we present the dynamics of a biological network on a genomic scale, by integrating transcriptional regulatory information and gene-expression data for multiple conditions in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. We develop an approach for the statistical analysis of network dynamics, called SANDY, combining well-known global topological measures, local motifs and newly derived statistics. We uncover large changes in underlying network architecture that are unexpected given current viewpoints and random simulations. In response to diverse stimuli, transcription factors alter their interactions to varying degrees, thereby rewiring the network. A few transcription factors serve as permanent hubs, but most act transiently only during certain conditions. By studying sub-network structures, we show that environmental responses facilitate fast signal propagation (for example, with short regulatory cascades), whereas the cell cycle and sporulation direct temporal progression through multiple stages (for example, with highly inter-connected transcription factors). Indeed, to drive the latter processes forward, phase-specific transcription factors inter-regulate serially, and ubiquitously active transcription factors layer above them in a two-tiered hierarchy. We anticipate that many of the concepts presented here-particularly the large-scale topological changes and hub transience-will apply to other biological networks, including complex sub-systems in higher eukaryotes.

  6. Genomic analysis of regulatory network dynamics reveals large topological changes.

    PubMed

    Luscombe, Nicholas M; Babu, M Madan; Yu, Haiyuan; Snyder, Michael; Teichmann, Sarah A; Gerstein, Mark

    2004-09-16

    Network analysis has been applied widely, providing a unifying language to describe disparate systems ranging from social interactions to power grids. It has recently been used in molecular biology, but so far the resulting networks have only been analysed statically. Here we present the dynamics of a biological network on a genomic scale, by integrating transcriptional regulatory information and gene-expression data for multiple conditions in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. We develop an approach for the statistical analysis of network dynamics, called SANDY, combining well-known global topological measures, local motifs and newly derived statistics. We uncover large changes in underlying network architecture that are unexpected given current viewpoints and random simulations. In response to diverse stimuli, transcription factors alter their interactions to varying degrees, thereby rewiring the network. A few transcription factors serve as permanent hubs, but most act transiently only during certain conditions. By studying sub-network structures, we show that environmental responses facilitate fast signal propagation (for example, with short regulatory cascades), whereas the cell cycle and sporulation direct temporal progression through multiple stages (for example, with highly inter-connected transcription factors). Indeed, to drive the latter processes forward, phase-specific transcription factors inter-regulate serially, and ubiquitously active transcription factors layer above them in a two-tiered hierarchy. We anticipate that many of the concepts presented here--particularly the large-scale topological changes and hub transience--will apply to other biological networks, including complex sub-systems in higher eukaryotes.

  7. Architecture of the human regulatory network derived from ENCODE data.

    PubMed

    Gerstein, Mark B; Kundaje, Anshul; Hariharan, Manoj; Landt, Stephen G; Yan, Koon-Kiu; Cheng, Chao; Mu, Xinmeng Jasmine; Khurana, Ekta; Rozowsky, Joel; Alexander, Roger; Min, Renqiang; Alves, Pedro; Abyzov, Alexej; Addleman, Nick; Bhardwaj, Nitin; Boyle, Alan P; Cayting, Philip; Charos, Alexandra; Chen, David Z; Cheng, Yong; Clarke, Declan; Eastman, Catharine; Euskirchen, Ghia; Frietze, Seth; Fu, Yao; Gertz, Jason; Grubert, Fabian; Harmanci, Arif; Jain, Preti; Kasowski, Maya; Lacroute, Phil; Leng, Jing; Lian, Jin; Monahan, Hannah; O'Geen, Henriette; Ouyang, Zhengqing; Partridge, E Christopher; Patacsil, Dorrelyn; Pauli, Florencia; Raha, Debasish; Ramirez, Lucia; Reddy, Timothy E; Reed, Brian; Shi, Minyi; Slifer, Teri; Wang, Jing; Wu, Linfeng; Yang, Xinqiong; Yip, Kevin Y; Zilberman-Schapira, Gili; Batzoglou, Serafim; Sidow, Arend; Farnham, Peggy J; Myers, Richard M; Weissman, Sherman M; Snyder, Michael

    2012-09-06

    Transcription factors bind in a combinatorial fashion to specify the on-and-off states of genes; the ensemble of these binding events forms a regulatory network, constituting the wiring diagram for a cell. To examine the principles of the human transcriptional regulatory network, we determined the genomic binding information of 119 transcription-related factors in over 450 distinct experiments. We found the combinatorial, co-association of transcription factors to be highly context specific: distinct combinations of factors bind at specific genomic locations. In particular, there are significant differences in the binding proximal and distal to genes. We organized all the transcription factor binding into a hierarchy and integrated it with other genomic information (for example, microRNA regulation), forming a dense meta-network. Factors at different levels have different properties; for instance, top-level transcription factors more strongly influence expression and middle-level ones co-regulate targets to mitigate information-flow bottlenecks. Moreover, these co-regulations give rise to many enriched network motifs (for example, noise-buffering feed-forward loops). Finally, more connected network components are under stronger selection and exhibit a greater degree of allele-specific activity (that is, differential binding to the two parental alleles). The regulatory information obtained in this study will be crucial for interpreting personal genome sequences and understanding basic principles of human biology and disease.

  8. EXAMINE: a computational approach to reconstructing gene regulatory networks.

    PubMed

    Deng, Xutao; Geng, Huimin; Ali, Hesham

    2005-08-01

    Reverse-engineering of gene networks using linear models often results in an underdetermined system because of excessive unknown parameters. In addition, the practical utility of linear models has remained unclear. We address these problems by developing an improved method, EXpression Array MINing Engine (EXAMINE), to infer gene regulatory networks from time-series gene expression data sets. EXAMINE takes advantage of sparse graph theory to overcome the excessive-parameter problem with an adaptive-connectivity model and fitting algorithm. EXAMINE also guarantees that the most parsimonious network structure will be found with its incremental adaptive fitting process. Compared to previous linear models, where a fully connected model is used, EXAMINE reduces the number of parameters by O(N), thereby increasing the chance of recovering the underlying regulatory network. The fitting algorithm increments the connectivity during the fitting process until a satisfactory fit is obtained. We performed a systematic study to explore the data mining ability of linear models. A guideline for using linear models is provided: If the system is small (3-20 elements), more than 90% of the regulation pathways can be determined correctly. For a large-scale system, either clustering is needed or it is necessary to integrate information in addition to expression profile. Coupled with the clustering method, we applied EXAMINE to rat central nervous system development (CNS) data with 112 genes. We were able to efficiently generate regulatory networks with statistically significant pathways that have been predicted previously.

  9. Gene regulatory networks governing haematopoietic stem cell development and identity.

    PubMed

    Pimanda, John E; Göttgens, Berthold

    2010-01-01

    Development can be viewed as a dynamic progression through regulatory states which characterise the various cell types within a given differentiation cascade. To understand the progression of regulatory states that define the origin and subsequent development of haematopoietic stem cells, the first imperative is to understand the ontogeny of haematopoiesis. We are fortunate that the ontogeny of blood development is one of the best characterized mammalian developmental systems. However, the field is still in its infancy with regard to the reconstruction of gene regulatory networks and their interactions with cell signalling cascades that drive a mesodermal progenitor to adopt the identity of a haematopoietic stem cell and beyond. Nevertheless, a framework to dissect these networks and comprehend the logic of its circuitry does exist and although they may not as yet be available, a sense for the tools that will be required to achieve this aim is also emerging. In this review we cover the fundamentals of network architecture, methods used to reconstruct networks, current knowledge of haematopoietic and related transcriptional networks, current challenges and future outlook.

  10. Automated Identification of Core Regulatory Genes in Human Gene Regulatory Networks.

    PubMed

    Narang, Vipin; Ramli, Muhamad Azfar; Singhal, Amit; Kumar, Pavanish; de Libero, Gennaro; Poidinger, Michael; Monterola, Christopher

    2015-01-01

    Human gene regulatory networks (GRN) can be difficult to interpret due to a tangle of edges interconnecting thousands of genes. We constructed a general human GRN from extensive transcription factor and microRNA target data obtained from public databases. In a subnetwork of this GRN that is active during estrogen stimulation of MCF-7 breast cancer cells, we benchmarked automated algorithms for identifying core regulatory genes (transcription factors and microRNAs). Among these algorithms, we identified K-core decomposition, pagerank and betweenness centrality algorithms as the most effective for discovering core regulatory genes in the network evaluated based on previously known roles of these genes in MCF-7 biology as well as in their ability to explain the up or down expression status of up to 70% of the remaining genes. Finally, we validated the use of K-core algorithm for organizing the GRN in an easier to interpret layered hierarchy where more influential regulatory genes percolate towards the inner layers. The integrated human gene and miRNA network and software used in this study are provided as supplementary materials (S1 Data) accompanying this manuscript.

  11. New probabilistic graphical models for genetic regulatory networks studies.

    PubMed

    Wang, Junbai; Cheung, Leo Wang-Kit; Delabie, Jan

    2005-12-01

    This paper introduces two new probabilistic graphical models for reconstruction of genetic regulatory networks using DNA microarray data. One is an independence graph (IG) model with either a forward or a backward search algorithm and the other one is a Gaussian network (GN) model with a novel greedy search method. The performances of both models were evaluated on four MAPK pathways in yeast and three simulated data sets. Generally, an IG model provides a sparse graph but a GN model produces a dense graph where more information about gene-gene interactions may be preserved. The results of our proposed models were compared with several other commonly used models, and our models have shown to give superior performance. Additionally, we found the same common limitations in the prediction of genetic regulatory networks when using only DNA microarray data.

  12. The incorporation of epigenetics in artificial gene regulatory networks.

    PubMed

    Turner, Alexander P; Lones, Michael A; Fuente, Luis A; Stepney, Susan; Caves, Leo S D; Tyrrell, Andy M

    2013-05-01

    Artificial gene regulatory networks are computational models that draw inspiration from biological networks of gene regulation. Since their inception they have been used to infer knowledge about gene regulation and as methods of computation. These computational models have been shown to possess properties typically found in the biological world, such as robustness and self organisation. Recently, it has become apparent that epigenetic mechanisms play an important role in gene regulation. This paper describes a new model, the Artificial Epigenetic Regulatory Network (AERN) which builds upon existing models by adding an epigenetic control layer. Our results demonstrate that AERNs are more adept at controlling multiple opposing trajectories when applied to a chaos control task within a conservative dynamical system, suggesting that AERNs are an interesting area for further investigation.

  13. Dynamics of gene regulatory networks with cell division cycle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Luonan; Wang, Ruiqi; Kobayashi, Tetsuya J.; Aihara, Kazuyuki

    2004-07-01

    This paper focuses on modeling and analyzing the nonlinear dynamics of gene regulatory networks with the consideration of a cell division cycle with duplication process of DNA , in particular for switches and oscillators of synthetic networks. We derive two models that may correspond to the eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells, respectively. A biologically plausible three-gene model ( lac,tetR , and cI ) and a repressilator as switch and oscillator examples are used to illustrate our theoretical results. We show that the cell cycle may play a significant role in gene regulation due to the nonlinear dynamics of a gene regulatory network although gene expressions are usually tightly controlled by transcriptional factors.

  14. Toward an orofacial gene regulatory network.

    PubMed

    Kousa, Youssef A; Schutte, Brian C

    2016-03-01

    Orofacial clefting is a common birth defect with significant morbidity. A panoply of candidate genes have been discovered through synergy of animal models and human genetics. Among these, variants in interferon regulatory factor 6 (IRF6) cause syndromic orofacial clefting and contribute risk toward isolated cleft lip and palate (1/700 live births). Rare variants in IRF6 can lead to Van der Woude syndrome (1/35,000 live births) and popliteal pterygium syndrome (1/300,000 live births). Furthermore, IRF6 regulates GRHL3 and rare variants in this downstream target can also lead to Van der Woude syndrome. In addition, a common variant (rs642961) in the IRF6 locus is found in 30% of the world's population and contributes risk for isolated orofacial clefting. Biochemical studies revealed that rs642961 abrogates one of four AP-2alpha binding sites. Like IRF6 and GRHL3, rare variants in TFAP2A can also lead to syndromic orofacial clefting with lip pits (branchio-oculo-facial syndrome). The literature suggests that AP-2alpha, IRF6 and GRHL3 are part of a pathway that is essential for lip and palate development. In addition to updating the pathways, players and pursuits, this review will highlight some of the current questions in the study of orofacial clefting.

  15. Single promoters as regulatory network motifs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zopf, Christopher; Maheshri, Narendra

    2012-02-01

    At eukaryotic promoters, chromatin can influence the relationship between a gene's expression and transcription factor (TF) activity. This additional complexity might allow single promoters to exhibit dynamical behavior commonly attributed to regulatory motifs involving multiple genes. We investigate the role of promoter chromatin architecture in the kinetics of gene activation using a previously described set of promoter variants based on the phosphate-regulated PHO5 promoter in S. cerevisiae. Accurate quantitative measurement of transcription activation kinetics is facilitated by a controllable and observable TF input to a promoter of interest leading to an observable expression output in single cells. We find the particular architecture of these promoters can result in a significant delay in activation, filtering of noisy TF signals, and a memory of previous activation -- dynamical behaviors reminiscent of a feed-forward loop but only requiring a single promoter. We suggest this is a consequence of chromatin transactions at the promoter, likely passing through a long-lived ``primed'' state between its inactive and competent states. Finally, we show our experimental setup can be generalized as a ``gene oscilloscope'' to probe the kinetics of heterologous promoter architectures.

  16. Global analysis of photosynthesis transcriptional regulatory networks.

    PubMed

    Imam, Saheed; Noguera, Daniel R; Donohue, Timothy J

    2014-12-01

    Photosynthesis is a crucial biological process that depends on the interplay of many components. This work analyzed the gene targets for 4 transcription factors: FnrL, PrrA, CrpK and MppG (RSP_2888), which are known or predicted to control photosynthesis in Rhodobacter sphaeroides. Chromatin immunoprecipitation followed by high-throughput sequencing (ChIP-seq) identified 52 operons under direct control of FnrL, illustrating its regulatory role in photosynthesis, iron homeostasis, nitrogen metabolism and regulation of sRNA synthesis. Using global gene expression analysis combined with ChIP-seq, we mapped the regulons of PrrA, CrpK and MppG. PrrA regulates ∼34 operons encoding mainly photosynthesis and electron transport functions, while CrpK, a previously uncharacterized Crp-family protein, regulates genes involved in photosynthesis and maintenance of iron homeostasis. Furthermore, CrpK and FnrL share similar DNA binding determinants, possibly explaining our observation of the ability of CrpK to partially compensate for the growth defects of a ΔFnrL mutant. We show that the Rrf2 family protein, MppG, plays an important role in photopigment biosynthesis, as part of an incoherent feed-forward loop with PrrA. Our results reveal a previously unrealized, high degree of combinatorial regulation of photosynthetic genes and significant cross-talk between their transcriptional regulators, while illustrating previously unidentified links between photosynthesis and the maintenance of iron homeostasis.

  17. Emerging complexity in the denitrification regulatory network of Bradyrhizobium japonicum.

    PubMed

    Torres, María J; Bueno, Emilio; Mesa, Socorro; Bedmar, Eulogio J; Delgado, María J

    2011-01-01

    Bradyrhizobium japonicum is a Gram-negative soil bacterium symbiotically associated with soya bean plants, which is also able to denitrify under free-living and symbiotic conditions. In B. japonicum, the napEDABC, nirK, norCBQD and nosRZDYFLX genes which encode reductases for nitrate, nitrite, nitric oxide and nitrous oxide respectively are required for denitrification. Similar to many other denitrifiers, expression of denitrification genes in B. japonicum requires both oxygen limitation and the presence of nitrate or a derived nitrogen oxide. In B. japonicum, a sophisticated regulatory network consisting of two linked regulatory cascades co-ordinates the expression of genes required for microaerobic respiration (the FixLJ/FixK2 cascade) and for nitrogen fixation (the RegSR/NifA cascade). The involvement of the FixLJ/FixK2 regulatory cascade in the microaerobic induction of the denitrification genes is well established. In addition, the FNR (fumarase and nitrate reduction regulator)/CRP(cAMP receptor protein)-type regulator NnrR expands the FixLJ/FixK2 regulatory cascade by an additional control level. A role for NifA is suggested in this process by recent experiments which have shown that it is required for full expression of denitrification genes in B. japonicum. The present review summarizes the current understanding of the regulatory network of denitrification in B. japonicum.

  18. Differential Regulatory Analysis Based on Coexpression Network in Cancer Research.

    PubMed

    Li, Junyi; Li, Yi-Xue; Li, Yuan-Yuan

    2016-01-01

    With rapid development of high-throughput techniques and accumulation of big transcriptomic data, plenty of computational methods and algorithms such as differential analysis and network analysis have been proposed to explore genome-wide gene expression characteristics. These efforts are aiming to transform underlying genomic information into valuable knowledges in biological and medical research fields. Recently, tremendous integrative research methods are dedicated to interpret the development and progress of neoplastic diseases, whereas differential regulatory analysis (DRA) based on gene coexpression network (GCN) increasingly plays a robust complement to regular differential expression analysis in revealing regulatory functions of cancer related genes such as evading growth suppressors and resisting cell death. Differential regulatory analysis based on GCN is prospective and shows its essential role in discovering the system properties of carcinogenesis features. Here we briefly review the paradigm of differential regulatory analysis based on GCN. We also focus on the applications of differential regulatory analysis based on GCN in cancer research and point out that DRA is necessary and extraordinary to reveal underlying molecular mechanism in large-scale carcinogenesis studies.

  19. A gene regulatory network armature for T-lymphocyte specification

    SciTech Connect

    Fung, Elizabeth-sharon

    2008-01-01

    Choice of a T-lymphoid fate by hematopoietic progenitor cells depends on sustained Notch-Delta signaling combined with tightly-regulated activities of multiple transcription factors. To dissect the regulatory network connections that mediate this process, we have used high-resolution analysis of regulatory gene expression trajectories from the beginning to the end of specification; tests of the short-term Notchdependence of these gene expression changes; and perturbation analyses of the effects of overexpression of two essential transcription factors, namely PU.l and GATA-3. Quantitative expression measurements of >50 transcription factor and marker genes have been used to derive the principal components of regulatory change through which T-cell precursors progress from primitive multipotency to T-lineage commitment. Distinct parts of the path reveal separate contributions of Notch signaling, GATA-3 activity, and downregulation of PU.l. Using BioTapestry, the results have been assembled into a draft gene regulatory network for the specification of T-cell precursors and the choice of T as opposed to myeloid dendritic or mast-cell fates. This network also accommodates effects of E proteins and mutual repression circuits of Gfil against Egr-2 and of TCF-l against PU.l as proposed elsewhere, but requires additional functions that remain unidentified. Distinctive features of this network structure include the intense dose-dependence of GATA-3 effects; the gene-specific modulation of PU.l activity based on Notch activity; the lack of direct opposition between PU.l and GATA-3; and the need for a distinct, late-acting repressive function or functions to extinguish stem and progenitor-derived regulatory gene expression.

  20. Conservation of trans-acting networks during mammalian regulatory evolution

    PubMed Central

    Stergachis, Andrew B.; Neph, Shane; Sandstrom, Richard; Haugen, Eric; Reynolds, Alex P.; Zhang, Miaohua; Byron, Rachel; Canfield, Theresa; Stelhing-Sun, Sandra; Lee, Kristen; Thurman, Robert E.; Vong, Shinny; Bates, Daniel; Neri, Fidencio; Diegel, Morgan; Giste, Erika; Dunn, Douglas; Hansen, R. Scott; Johnson, Audra K.; Sabo, Peter J.; Wilken, Matthew S.; Reh, Thomas A.; Treuting, Piper M.; Kaul, Rajinder; Groudine, Mark; Bender, M.A.; Borenstein, Elhanan; Stamatoyannopoulos, John A.

    2014-01-01

    The fundamental body plan and major physiological axes have been highly conserved during mammalian evolution, despite constraint of only a fraction of the human genome sequence. To quantify cis- vs. trans-regulatory contributions to mammalian regulatory evolution, we performed genomic DNase I footprinting of the mouse genome across 25 cell and tissue types, collectively defining >8.6 million TF occupancy sites at nucleotide resolution. Here we show that mouse TF footprints encode a regulatory lexicon of >600 motifs that is >95% similar with that recognized in vivo by human TFs. However, only ~20% of mouse TF footprints have human orthologues. Despite substantial turnover of the cis-regulatory landscape around each TF gene, nearly half of all pairwise regulatory interactions connecting mouse TF genes have been maintained in orthologous human cell types through evolutionary innovation of TF recognition sequences. Strikingly, the higher-level organization of mouse TF-to-TF connections into cellular network architectures is nearly identical with human. Our results suggest that evolutionary selection on mammalian gene regulation is targeted chiefly at the level of trans-regulatory circuitry. PMID:25409825

  1. Gene regulatory network inference using out of equilibrium statistical mechanics

    PubMed Central

    Benecke, Arndt

    2008-01-01

    Spatiotemporal control of gene expression is fundamental to multicellular life. Despite prodigious efforts, the encoding of gene expression regulation in eukaryotes is not understood. Gene expression analyses nourish the hope to reverse engineer effector-target gene networks using inference techniques. Inference from noisy and circumstantial data relies on using robust models with few parameters for the underlying mechanisms. However, a systematic path to gene regulatory network reverse engineering from functional genomics data is still impeded by fundamental problems. Recently, Johannes Berg from the Theoretical Physics Institute of Cologne University has made two remarkable contributions that significantly advance the gene regulatory network inference problem. Berg, who uses gene expression data from yeast, has demonstrated a nonequilibrium regime for mRNA concentration dynamics and was able to map the gene regulatory process upon simple stochastic systems driven out of equilibrium. The impact of his demonstration is twofold, affecting both the understanding of the operational constraints under which transcription occurs and the capacity to extract relevant information from highly time-resolved expression data. Berg has used his observation to predict target genes of selected transcription factors, and thereby, in principle, demonstrated applicability of his out of equilibrium statistical mechanics approach to the gene network inference problem. PMID:19404429

  2. Additive Functions in Boolean Models of Gene Regulatory Network Modules

    PubMed Central

    Darabos, Christian; Di Cunto, Ferdinando; Tomassini, Marco; Moore, Jason H.; Provero, Paolo; Giacobini, Mario

    2011-01-01

    Gene-on-gene regulations are key components of every living organism. Dynamical abstract models of genetic regulatory networks help explain the genome's evolvability and robustness. These properties can be attributed to the structural topology of the graph formed by genes, as vertices, and regulatory interactions, as edges. Moreover, the actual gene interaction of each gene is believed to play a key role in the stability of the structure. With advances in biology, some effort was deployed to develop update functions in Boolean models that include recent knowledge. We combine real-life gene interaction networks with novel update functions in a Boolean model. We use two sub-networks of biological organisms, the yeast cell-cycle and the mouse embryonic stem cell, as topological support for our system. On these structures, we substitute the original random update functions by a novel threshold-based dynamic function in which the promoting and repressing effect of each interaction is considered. We use a third real-life regulatory network, along with its inferred Boolean update functions to validate the proposed update function. Results of this validation hint to increased biological plausibility of the threshold-based function. To investigate the dynamical behavior of this new model, we visualized the phase transition between order and chaos into the critical regime using Derrida plots. We complement the qualitative nature of Derrida plots with an alternative measure, the criticality distance, that also allows to discriminate between regimes in a quantitative way. Simulation on both real-life genetic regulatory networks show that there exists a set of parameters that allows the systems to operate in the critical region. This new model includes experimentally derived biological information and recent discoveries, which makes it potentially useful to guide experimental research. The update function confers additional realism to the model, while reducing the complexity

  3. Additive functions in boolean models of gene regulatory network modules.

    PubMed

    Darabos, Christian; Di Cunto, Ferdinando; Tomassini, Marco; Moore, Jason H; Provero, Paolo; Giacobini, Mario

    2011-01-01

    Gene-on-gene regulations are key components of every living organism. Dynamical abstract models of genetic regulatory networks help explain the genome's evolvability and robustness. These properties can be attributed to the structural topology of the graph formed by genes, as vertices, and regulatory interactions, as edges. Moreover, the actual gene interaction of each gene is believed to play a key role in the stability of the structure. With advances in biology, some effort was deployed to develop update functions in boolean models that include recent knowledge. We combine real-life gene interaction networks with novel update functions in a boolean model. We use two sub-networks of biological organisms, the yeast cell-cycle and the mouse embryonic stem cell, as topological support for our system. On these structures, we substitute the original random update functions by a novel threshold-based dynamic function in which the promoting and repressing effect of each interaction is considered. We use a third real-life regulatory network, along with its inferred boolean update functions to validate the proposed update function. Results of this validation hint to increased biological plausibility of the threshold-based function. To investigate the dynamical behavior of this new model, we visualized the phase transition between order and chaos into the critical regime using Derrida plots. We complement the qualitative nature of Derrida plots with an alternative measure, the criticality distance, that also allows to discriminate between regimes in a quantitative way. Simulation on both real-life genetic regulatory networks show that there exists a set of parameters that allows the systems to operate in the critical region. This new model includes experimentally derived biological information and recent discoveries, which makes it potentially useful to guide experimental research. The update function confers additional realism to the model, while reducing the complexity

  4. Identifying genes of gene regulatory networks using formal concept analysis.

    PubMed

    Gebert, Jutta; Motameny, Susanne; Faigle, Ulrich; Forst, Christian V; Schrader, Rainer

    2008-03-01

    In order to understand the behavior of a gene regulatory network, it is essential to know the genes that belong to it. Identifying the correct members (e.g., in order to build a model) is a difficult task even for small subnetworks. Usually only few members of a network are known and one needs to guess the missing members based on experience or informed speculation. It is beneficial if one can additionally rely on experimental data to support this guess. In this work we present a new method based on formal concept analysis to detect unknown members of a gene regulatory network from gene expression time series data. We show that formal concept analysis is able to find a list of candidate genes for inclusion into a partially known basic network. This list can then be reduced by a statistical analysis so that the resulting genes interact strongly with the basic network and therefore should be included when modeling the network. The method has been applied to the DNA repair system of Mycobacterium tuberculosis. In this application, our method produces comparable results to an already existing method of component selection while it is applicable to a broader range of problems.

  5. Autonomous Boolean modelling of developmental gene regulatory networks

    PubMed Central

    Cheng, Xianrui; Sun, Mengyang; Socolar, Joshua E. S.

    2013-01-01

    During early embryonic development, a network of regulatory interactions among genes dynamically determines a pattern of differentiated tissues. We show that important timing information associated with the interactions can be faithfully represented in autonomous Boolean models in which binary variables representing expression levels are updated in continuous time, and that such models can provide a direct insight into features that are difficult to extract from ordinary differential equation (ODE) models. As an application, we model the experimentally well-studied network controlling fly body segmentation. The Boolean model successfully generates the patterns formed in normal and genetically perturbed fly embryos, permits the derivation of constraints on the time delay parameters, clarifies the logic associated with different ODE parameter sets and provides a platform for studying connectivity and robustness in parameter space. By elucidating the role of regulatory time delays in pattern formation, the results suggest new types of experimental measurements in early embryonic development. PMID:23034351

  6. Multilayered Control of Alternative Splicing Regulatory Networks by Transcription Factors.

    PubMed

    Han, Hong; Braunschweig, Ulrich; Gonatopoulos-Pournatzis, Thomas; Weatheritt, Robert J; Hirsch, Calley L; Ha, Kevin C H; Radovani, Ernest; Nabeel-Shah, Syed; Sterne-Weiler, Tim; Wang, Juli; O'Hanlon, Dave; Pan, Qun; Ray, Debashish; Zheng, Hong; Vizeacoumar, Frederick; Datti, Alessandro; Magomedova, Lilia; Cummins, Carolyn L; Hughes, Timothy R; Greenblatt, Jack F; Wrana, Jeffrey L; Moffat, Jason; Blencowe, Benjamin J

    2017-02-02

    Networks of coordinated alternative splicing (AS) events play critical roles in development and disease. However, a comprehensive knowledge of the factors that regulate these networks is lacking. We describe a high-throughput system for systematically linking trans-acting factors to endogenous RNA regulatory events. Using this system, we identify hundreds of factors associated with diverse regulatory layers that positively or negatively control AS events linked to cell fate. Remarkably, more than one-third of the regulators are transcription factors. Further analyses of the zinc finger protein Zfp871 and BTB/POZ domain transcription factor Nacc1, which regulate neural and stem cell AS programs, respectively, reveal roles in controlling the expression of specific splicing regulators. Surprisingly, these proteins also appear to regulate target AS programs via binding RNA. Our results thus uncover a large "missing cache" of splicing regulators among annotated transcription factors, some of which dually regulate AS through direct and indirect mechanisms.

  7. Master regulators, regulatory networks, and pathways of glioblastoma subtypes.

    PubMed

    Bozdag, Serdar; Li, Aiguo; Baysan, Mehmet; Fine, Howard A

    2014-01-01

    Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the most common malignant brain tumor. GBM samples are classified into subtypes based on their transcriptomic and epigenetic profiles. Despite numerous studies to better characterize GBM biology, a comprehensive study to identify GBM subtype- specific master regulators, gene regulatory networks, and pathways is missing. Here, we used FastMEDUSA to compute master regulators and gene regulatory networks for each GBM subtype. We also ran Gene Set Enrichment Analysis and Ingenuity Pathway Analysis on GBM expression dataset from The Cancer Genome Atlas Project to compute GBM- and GBM subtype-specific pathways. Our analysis was able to recover some of the known master regulators and pathways in GBM as well as some putative novel regulators and pathways, which will aide in our understanding of the unique biology of GBM subtypes.

  8. Genetic regulatory network models of biological clocks: evolutionary history matters.

    PubMed

    Knabe, Johannes F; Nehaniv, Chrystopher L; Schilstra, Maria J

    2008-01-01

    We study the evolvability and dynamics of artificial genetic regulatory networks (GRNs), as active control systems, realizing simple models of biological clocks that have evolved to respond to periodic environmental stimuli of various kinds with appropriate periodic behaviors. GRN models may differ in the evolvability of expressive regulatory dynamics. A new class of artificial GRNs with an evolvable number of complex cis-regulatory control sites--each involving a finite number of inhibitory and activatory binding factors--is introduced, allowing realization of complex regulatory logic. Previous work on biological clocks in nature has noted the capacity of clocks to oscillate in the absence of environmental stimuli, putting forth several candidate explanations for their observed behavior, related to anticipation of environmental conditions, compartmentation of activities in time, and robustness to perturbations of various kinds or to unselected accidents of neutral selection. Several of these hypotheses are explored by evolving GRNs with and without (Gaussian) noise and blackout periods for environmental stimulation. Robustness to certain types of perturbation appears to account for some, but not all, dynamical properties of the evolved networks. Unselected abilities, also observed for biological clocks, include the capacity to adapt to change in wavelength of environmental stimulus and to clock resetting.

  9. Inferring transcription factor collaborations in gene regulatory networks

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Living cells are realized by complex gene expression programs that are moderated by regulatory proteins called transcription factors (TFs). The TFs control the differential expression of target genes in the context of transcriptional regulatory networks (TRNs), either individually or in groups. Deciphering the mechanisms of how the TFs control the expression of target genes is a challenging task, especially when multiple TFs collaboratively participate in the transcriptional regulation. Results We model the underlying regulatory interactions in terms of the directions (activation or repression) and their logical roles (necessary and/or sufficient) with a modified association rule mining approach, called mTRIM. The experiment on Yeast discovered 670 regulatory interactions, in which multiple TFs express their functions on common target genes collaboratively. The evaluation on yeast genetic interactions, TF knockouts and a synthetic dataset shows that our algorithm is significantly better than the existing ones. Conclusions mTRIM is a novel method to infer TF collaborations in transcriptional regulation networks. mTRIM is available at http://www.msu.edu/~jinchen/mTRIM. PMID:24565025

  10. Are genetically robust regulatory networks dynamically different from random ones?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sevim, Volkan; Rikvold, Per Arne

    We study a genetic regulatory network model developed to demonstrate that genetic robustness can evolve through stabilizing selection for optimal phenotypes. We report preliminary results on whether such selection could result in a reorganization of the state space of the system. For the chosen parameters, the evolution moves the system slightly toward the more ordered part of the phase diagram. We also find that strong memory effects cause the Derrida annealed approximation to give erroneous predictions about the model's phase diagram.

  11. Analyzing stationary states of gene regulatory network using petri nets.

    PubMed

    Gambin, Anna; Lasota, Sławomir; Rutkowski, Michał

    2006-01-01

    We introduce and formally define the notion of a stationary state for Petri nets. We also propose a fully automatic method for finding such states. The procedure makes use of the Presburger arithmetic to describe all the stationary states. Finally we apply this novel approach to find stationary states of a gene regulatory network describing the flower morphogenesis of A. thaliana. This shows that the proposed method can be successfully applied in the study of biological systems.

  12. Analyzing stationary States of gene regulatory network using petri nets.

    PubMed

    Gambin, Anna; Lasota, Sławomir; Rutkowski, Michał

    2011-01-01

    We introduce and formally define the notion of a stationary state for Petri nets. We also propose a fully automatic method for finding such states. The procedure makes use of the Presburger arithmetic to describe all the stationary states. Finally we apply this novel approach to find stationary states of a gene regulatory network describing the flower morphogenesis of A. thaliana. This shows that the proposed method can be successfully applied in the study of biological systems.

  13. Modeling Regulatory Networks to Understand Plant Development: Small Is Beautiful

    PubMed Central

    Middleton, Alistair M.; Farcot, Etienne; Owen, Markus R.; Vernoux, Teva

    2012-01-01

    We now have unprecedented capability to generate large data sets on the myriad genes and molecular players that regulate plant development. Networks of interactions between systems components can be derived from that data in various ways and can be used to develop mathematical models of various degrees of sophistication. Here, we discuss why, in many cases, it is productive to focus on small networks. We provide a brief and accessible introduction to relevant mathematical and computational approaches to model regulatory networks and discuss examples of small network models that have helped generate new insights into plant biology (where small is beautiful), such as in circadian rhythms, hormone signaling, and tissue patterning. We conclude by outlining some of the key technical and modeling challenges for the future. PMID:23110896

  14. Spectroscopic insights into axial ligation and active-site H-bonding in substrate-bound human heme oxygenase-2.

    PubMed

    Gardner, Jessica D; Yi, Li; Ragsdale, Stephen W; Brunold, Thomas C

    2010-09-01

    Heme oxygenases (HOs) are monooxygenases that catalyze the first step in heme degradation, converting heme to biliverdin with concomitant release of Fe(II) and CO from the porphyrin macrocycle. Two heme oxygenase isoforms, HO-1 and HO-2, exist that differ in several ways, including a complete lack of Cys residues in HO-1 and the presence of three Cys residues as part of heme-regulatory motifs (HRMs) in HO-2. HRMs in other heme proteins are thought to directly bind heme, or to otherwise regulate protein stability or activity; however, it is not currently known how the HRMs exert these effects on HO-2 function. To better understand the properties of this vital enzyme and to elucidate possible roles of its HRMs, various forms of HO-2 possessing distinct alterations to the HRMs were prepared. In this study, variants with Cys265 in a thiol form are compared with those with this residue in an oxidized (part of a disulfide bond or existing as a sulfenate moiety) form. Absorption and magnetic circular dichroism spectroscopic data of these HO-2 variants clearly demonstrate that a new low-spin Fe(III) heme species characteristic of thiolate ligation is formed when Cys265 is reduced. Additionally, absorption, magnetic circular dichroism, and resonance Raman data collected at different temperatures reveal an intriguing temperature dependence of the iron spin state in the heme-HO-2 complex. These findings are consistent with the presence of a hydrogen-bonding network at the heme's distal side within the active site of HO-2 with potentially significant differences from that observed in HO-1.

  15. Evolution of the mammalian embryonic pluripotency gene regulatory network

    PubMed Central

    Fernandez-Tresguerres, Beatriz; Cañon, Susana; Rayon, Teresa; Pernaute, Barbara; Crespo, Miguel; Torroja, Carlos; Manzanares, Miguel

    2010-01-01

    Embryonic pluripotency in the mouse is established and maintained by a gene-regulatory network under the control of a core set of transcription factors that include octamer-binding protein 4 (Oct4; official name POU domain, class 5, transcription factor 1, Pou5f1), sex-determining region Y (SRY)-box containing gene 2 (Sox2), and homeobox protein Nanog. Although this network is largely conserved in eutherian mammals, very little information is available regarding its evolutionary conservation in other vertebrates. We have compared the embryonic pluripotency networks in mouse and chick by means of expression analysis in the pregastrulation chicken embryo, genomic comparisons, and functional assays of pluripotency-related regulatory elements in ES cells and blastocysts. We find that multiple components of the network are either novel to mammals or have acquired novel expression domains in early developmental stages of the mouse. We also find that the downstream action of the mouse core pluripotency factors is mediated largely by genomic sequence elements nonconserved with chick. In the case of Sox2 and Fgf4, we find that elements driving expression in embryonic pluripotent cells have evolved by a small number of nucleotide changes that create novel binding sites for core factors. Our results show that the network in charge of embryonic pluripotency is an evolutionary novelty of mammals that is related to the comparatively extended period during which mammalian embryonic cells need to be maintained in an undetermined state before engaging in early differentiation events. PMID:21048080

  16. Gap Gene Regulatory Dynamics Evolve along a Genotype Network

    PubMed Central

    Crombach, Anton; Wotton, Karl R.; Jiménez-Guri, Eva; Jaeger, Johannes

    2016-01-01

    Developmental gene networks implement the dynamic regulatory mechanisms that pattern and shape the organism. Over evolutionary time, the wiring of these networks changes, yet the patterning outcome is often preserved, a phenomenon known as “system drift.” System drift is illustrated by the gap gene network—involved in segmental patterning—in dipteran insects. In the classic model organism Drosophila melanogaster and the nonmodel scuttle fly Megaselia abdita, early activation and placement of gap gene expression domains show significant quantitative differences, yet the final patterning output of the system is essentially identical in both species. In this detailed modeling analysis of system drift, we use gene circuits which are fit to quantitative gap gene expression data in M. abdita and compare them with an equivalent set of models from D. melanogaster. The results of this comparative analysis show precisely how compensatory regulatory mechanisms achieve equivalent final patterns in both species. We discuss the larger implications of the work in terms of “genotype networks” and the ways in which the structure of regulatory networks can influence patterns of evolutionary change (evolvability). PMID:26796549

  17. Dynamic Gene Regulatory Networks of Human Myeloid Differentiation.

    PubMed

    Ramirez, Ricardo N; El-Ali, Nicole C; Mager, Mikayla Anne; Wyman, Dana; Conesa, Ana; Mortazavi, Ali

    2017-03-27

    The reconstruction of gene regulatory networks underlying cell differentiation from high-throughput gene expression and chromatin data remains a challenge. Here, we derive dynamic gene regulatory networks for human myeloid differentiation using a 5-day time series of RNA-seq and ATAC-seq data. We profile HL-60 promyelocytes differentiating into macrophages, neutrophils, monocytes, and monocyte-derived macrophages. We find a rapid response in the expression of key transcription factors and lineage markers that only regulate a subset of their targets at a given time, which is followed by chromatin accessibility changes that occur later along with further gene expression changes. We observe differences between promyelocyte- and monocyte-derived macrophages at both the transcriptional and chromatin landscape level, despite using the same differentiation stimulus, which suggest that the path taken by cells in the differentiation landscape defines their end cell state. More generally, our approach of combining neighboring time points and replicates to achieve greater sequencing depth can efficiently infer footprint-based regulatory networks from long series data.

  18. Phase transitions in the evolution of gene regulatory networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Skanata, Antun; Kussell, Edo

    The role of gene regulatory networks is to respond to environmental conditions and optimize growth of the cell. A typical example is found in bacteria, where metabolic genes are activated in response to nutrient availability, and are subsequently turned off to conserve energy when their specific substrates are depleted. However, in fluctuating environmental conditions, regulatory networks could experience strong evolutionary pressures not only to turn the right genes on and off, but also to respond optimally under a wide spectrum of fluctuation timescales. The outcome of evolution is predicted by the long-term growth rate, which differentiates between optimal strategies. Here we present an analytic computation of the long-term growth rate in randomly fluctuating environments, by using mean-field and higher order expansion in the environmental history. We find that optimal strategies correspond to distinct regions in the phase space of fluctuations, separated by first and second order phase transitions. The statistics of environmental randomness are shown to dictate the possible evolutionary modes, which either change the structure of the regulatory network abruptly, or gradually modify and tune the interactions between its components.

  19. An algebra-based method for inferring gene regulatory networks

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The inference of gene regulatory networks (GRNs) from experimental observations is at the heart of systems biology. This includes the inference of both the network topology and its dynamics. While there are many algorithms available to infer the network topology from experimental data, less emphasis has been placed on methods that infer network dynamics. Furthermore, since the network inference problem is typically underdetermined, it is essential to have the option of incorporating into the inference process, prior knowledge about the network, along with an effective description of the search space of dynamic models. Finally, it is also important to have an understanding of how a given inference method is affected by experimental and other noise in the data used. Results This paper contains a novel inference algorithm using the algebraic framework of Boolean polynomial dynamical systems (BPDS), meeting all these requirements. The algorithm takes as input time series data, including those from network perturbations, such as knock-out mutant strains and RNAi experiments. It allows for the incorporation of prior biological knowledge while being robust to significant levels of noise in the data used for inference. It uses an evolutionary algorithm for local optimization with an encoding of the mathematical models as BPDS. The BPDS framework allows an effective representation of the search space for algebraic dynamic models that improves computational performance. The algorithm is validated with both simulated and experimental microarray expression profile data. Robustness to noise is tested using a published mathematical model of the segment polarity gene network in Drosophila melanogaster. Benchmarking of the algorithm is done by comparison with a spectrum of state-of-the-art network inference methods on data from the synthetic IRMA network to demonstrate that our method has good precision and recall for the network reconstruction task, while also

  20. From 'differential expression' to 'differential networking' - identification of dysfunctional regulatory networks in diseases.

    PubMed

    de la Fuente, Alberto

    2010-07-01

    Understanding diseases requires identifying the differences between healthy and affected tissues. Gene expression data have revolutionized the study of diseases by making it possible to simultaneously consider thousands of genes. The identification of disease-associated genes requires studying the genes in the context of the regulatory systems they are involved in. A major goal is to identify specific regulatory networks that are dysfunctional in a given disease state. Although we still have not reached a stage where the elucidation of differential regulatory networks is commonly feasible, recent advances have described the first steps towards this goal - the identification of differential coexpression networks. This review describes the shift from differential gene expression to differential networking and outlines how this shift will affect the study of the genetic basis of disease.

  1. Pleiotropy constrains the evolution of protein but not regulatory sequences in a transcription regulatory network influencing complex social behaviors

    PubMed Central

    Molodtsova, Daria; Harpur, Brock A.; Kent, Clement F.; Seevananthan, Kajendra; Zayed, Amro

    2014-01-01

    It is increasingly apparent that genes and networks that influence complex behavior are evolutionary conserved, which is paradoxical considering that behavior is labile over evolutionary timescales. How does adaptive change in behavior arise if behavior is controlled by conserved, pleiotropic, and likely evolutionary constrained genes? Pleiotropy and connectedness are known to constrain the general rate of protein evolution, prompting some to suggest that the evolution of complex traits, including behavior, is fuelled by regulatory sequence evolution. However, we seldom have data on the strength of selection on mutations in coding and regulatory sequences, and this hinders our ability to study how pleiotropy influences coding and regulatory sequence evolution. Here we use population genomics to estimate the strength of selection on coding and regulatory mutations for a transcriptional regulatory network that influences complex behavior of honey bees. We found that replacement mutations in highly connected transcription factors and target genes experience significantly stronger negative selection relative to weakly connected transcription factors and targets. Adaptively evolving proteins were significantly more likely to reside at the periphery of the regulatory network, while proteins with signs of negative selection were near the core of the network. Interestingly, connectedness and network structure had minimal influence on the strength of selection on putative regulatory sequences for both transcription factors and their targets. Our study indicates that adaptive evolution of complex behavior can arise because of positive selection on protein-coding mutations in peripheral genes, and on regulatory sequence mutations in both transcription factors and their targets throughout the network. PMID:25566318

  2. Modularity and evolutionary constraints in a baculovirus gene regulatory network

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The structure of regulatory networks remains an open question in our understanding of complex biological systems. Interactions during complete viral life cycles present unique opportunities to understand how host-parasite network take shape and behave. The Anticarsia gemmatalis multiple nucleopolyhedrovirus (AgMNPV) is a large double-stranded DNA virus, whose genome may encode for 152 open reading frames (ORFs). Here we present the analysis of the ordered cascade of the AgMNPV gene expression. Results We observed an earlier onset of the expression than previously reported for other baculoviruses, especially for genes involved in DNA replication. Most ORFs were expressed at higher levels in a more permissive host cell line. Genes with more than one copy in the genome had distinct expression profiles, which could indicate the acquisition of new functionalities. The transcription gene regulatory network (GRN) for 149 ORFs had a modular topology comprising five communities of highly interconnected nodes that separated key genes that are functionally related on different communities, possibly maximizing redundancy and GRN robustness by compartmentalization of important functions. Core conserved functions showed expression synchronicity, distinct GRN features and significantly less genetic diversity, consistent with evolutionary constraints imposed in key elements of biological systems. This reduced genetic diversity also had a positive correlation with the importance of the gene in our estimated GRN, supporting a relationship between phylogenetic data of baculovirus genes and network features inferred from expression data. We also observed that gene arrangement in overlapping transcripts was conserved among related baculoviruses, suggesting a principle of genome organization. Conclusions Albeit with a reduced number of nodes (149), the AgMNPV GRN had a topology and key characteristics similar to those observed in complex cellular organisms, which indicates

  3. Social networks and life satisfaction: The interplay of network density and regulatory focus.

    PubMed

    Zou, Xi; Ingram, Paul; Higgins, E Tory

    We propose that an individual's regulatory focus moderates the significant role social network density-the degree of interconnectedness among a person's social contacts-plays in shaping life satisfaction. Evidence from Study 1 indicates that participants with high prevention effectiveness reported higher life satisfaction when they were embedded in a high-density network, whereas participants with low promotion effectiveness reported lower life satisfaction when they were embedded in a low-density network. Study 2 further specifies the underlying mechanism, namely that participants with high prevention effectiveness are more likely to obtain support for meeting obligations and responsibilities when they are embedded in a high-density network, whereas participants with low promotion effectiveness suffer from the support for creative inspiration and personal development in a low-density network (by highlighting their promotion failure). Implications for studying the interplay between social networks and individuals' self-regulatory motives are discussed.

  4. Heme and erythropoieis: more than a structural role

    PubMed Central

    Chiabrando, Deborah; Mercurio, Sonia; Tolosano, Emanuela

    2014-01-01

    Erythropoiesis is the biological process that consumes the highest amount of body iron for heme synthesis. Heme synthesis in erythroid cells is finely coordinated with that of alpha (α) and beta (β)-globin, resulting in the production of hemoglobin, a tetramer of 2α- and 2β-globin chains, and heme as the prosthetic group. Heme is not only the structural component of hemoglobin, but it plays multiple regulatory roles during the differentiation of erythroid precursors since it controls its own synthesis and regulates the expression of several erythroid-specific genes. Heme is synthesized in developing erythroid progenitors by the stage of proerythroblast, through a series of eight enzymatic reactions divided between mitochondria and cytosol. Defects of heme synthesis in the erythroid lineage result in sideroblastic anemias, characterized by microcytic anemia associated to mitochondrial iron overload, or in erythropoietic porphyrias, characterized by porphyrin deposition in erythroid cells. Here, we focus on the heme biosynthetic pathway and on human erythroid disorders due to defective heme synthesis. The regulatory role of heme during erythroid differentiation is discussed as well as the heme-mediated regulatory mechanisms that allow the orchestration of the adaptive cell response to heme deficiency. PMID:24881043

  5. Biology of Heme in Mammalian Erythroid Cells and Related Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Fujiwara, Tohru; Harigae, Hideo

    2015-01-01

    Heme is a prosthetic group comprising ferrous iron (Fe2+) and protoporphyrin IX and is an essential cofactor in various biological processes such as oxygen transport (hemoglobin) and storage (myoglobin) and electron transfer (respiratory cytochromes) in addition to its role as a structural component of hemoproteins. Heme biosynthesis is induced during erythroid differentiation and is coordinated with the expression of genes involved in globin formation and iron acquisition/transport. However, erythroid and nonerythroid cells exhibit distinct differences in the heme biosynthetic pathway regulation. Defects of heme biosynthesis in developing erythroblasts can have profound medical implications, as represented by sideroblastic anemia. This review will focus on the biology of heme in mammalian erythroid cells, including the heme biosynthetic pathway as well as the regulatory role of heme and human disorders that arise from defective heme synthesis. PMID:26557657

  6. Identifying gene regulatory network rewiring using latent differential graphical models

    PubMed Central

    Tian, Dechao; Gu, Quanquan; Ma, Jian

    2016-01-01

    Gene regulatory networks (GRNs) are highly dynamic among different tissue types. Identifying tissue-specific gene regulation is critically important to understand gene function in a particular cellular context. Graphical models have been used to estimate GRN from gene expression data to distinguish direct interactions from indirect associations. However, most existing methods estimate GRN for a specific cell/tissue type or in a tissue-naive way, or do not specifically focus on network rewiring between different tissues. Here, we describe a new method called Latent Differential Graphical Model (LDGM). The motivation of our method is to estimate the differential network between two tissue types directly without inferring the network for individual tissues, which has the advantage of utilizing much smaller sample size to achieve reliable differential network estimation. Our simulation results demonstrated that LDGM consistently outperforms other Gaussian graphical model based methods. We further evaluated LDGM by applying to the brain and blood gene expression data from the GTEx consortium. We also applied LDGM to identify network rewiring between cancer subtypes using the TCGA breast cancer samples. Our results suggest that LDGM is an effective method to infer differential network using high-throughput gene expression data to identify GRN dynamics among different cellular conditions. PMID:27378774

  7. Stochastic S-system modeling of gene regulatory network.

    PubMed

    Chowdhury, Ahsan Raja; Chetty, Madhu; Evans, Rob

    2015-10-01

    Microarray gene expression data can provide insights into biological processes at a system-wide level and is commonly used for reverse engineering gene regulatory networks (GRN). Due to the amalgamation of noise from different sources, microarray expression profiles become inherently noisy leading to significant impact on the GRN reconstruction process. Microarray replicates (both biological and technical), generated to increase the reliability of data obtained under noisy conditions, have limited influence in enhancing the accuracy of reconstruction . Therefore, instead of the conventional GRN modeling approaches which are deterministic, stochastic techniques are becoming increasingly necessary for inferring GRN from noisy microarray data. In this paper, we propose a new stochastic GRN model by investigating incorporation of various standard noise measurements in the deterministic S-system model. Experimental evaluations performed for varying sizes of synthetic network, representing different stochastic processes, demonstrate the effect of noise on the accuracy of genetic network modeling and the significance of stochastic modeling for GRN reconstruction . The proposed stochastic model is subsequently applied to infer the regulations among genes in two real life networks: (1) the well-studied IRMA network, a real-life in-vivo synthetic network constructed within the Saccharomyces cerevisiae yeast, and (2) the SOS DNA repair network in Escherichia coli.

  8. Modeling regulatory cascades using Artificial Neural Networks: the case of transcriptional regulatory networks shaped during the yeast stress response.

    PubMed

    Manioudaki, Maria E; Poirazi, Panayiota

    2013-01-01

    Over the last decade, numerous computational methods have been developed in order to infer and model biological networks. Transcriptional networks in particular have attracted significant attention due to their critical role in cell survival. The majority of network inference methods use genome-wide experimental data to search for modules of genes with coherent expression profiles and common regulators, often ignoring the multi-layer structure of transcriptional cascades. Modeling methodologies on the other hand assume a given network structure and vary significantly in their algorithmic approach, ranging from over-simplified representations (e.g., Boolean networks) to detailed -but computationally expensive-network simulations (e.g., with differential equations). In this work we use Artificial Neural Networks (ANNs) to model transcriptional regulatory cascades that emerge during the stress response in Saccharomyces cerevisiae and extend in three layers. We confine the structure of the ANNs to match the structure of the biological networks as determined by gene expression, DNA-protein interaction and experimental evidence provided in publicly available databases. Trained ANNs are able to predict the expression profile of 11 target genes across multiple experimental conditions with a correlation coefficient >0.7. When time-dependent interactions between upstream transcription factors (TFs) and their indirect targets are also included in the ANNs, accurate predictions are achieved for 30/34 target genes. Moreover, heterodimer formation is taken into account. We show that ANNs can be used to (1) accurately predict the expression of downstream genes in a 3-layer transcriptional cascade based on the expression of their indirect regulators and (2) infer the condition- and time-dependent activity of various TFs as well as during heterodimer formation. We show that a three-layer regulatory cascade whose structure is determined by co-expressed gene modules and their

  9. Innovation and robustness in complex regulatory gene networks

    PubMed Central

    Ciliberti, S.; Martin, O. C.; Wagner, A.

    2007-01-01

    The history of life involves countless evolutionary innovations, a steady stream of ingenuity that has been flowing for more than 3 billion years. Very little is known about the principles of biological organization that allow such innovation. Here, we examine these principles for evolutionary innovation in gene expression patterns. To this end, we study a model for the transcriptional regulation networks that are at the heart of embryonic development. A genotype corresponds to a regulatory network of a given topology, and a phenotype corresponds to a steady-state gene expression pattern. Networks with the same phenotype form a connected graph in genotype space, where two networks are immediate neighbors if they differ by one regulatory interaction. We show that an evolutionary search on this graph can reach genotypes that are as different from each other as if they were chosen at random in genotype space, allowing evolutionary access to different kinds of innovation while staying close to a viable phenotype. Thus, although robustness to mutations may hinder innovation in the short term, we conclude that long-term innovation in gene expression patterns can only emerge in the presence of the robustness caused by connected genotype graphs. PMID:17690244

  10. Minimum network constraint on reverse engineering to develop biological regulatory networks.

    PubMed

    Shao, Bin; Wu, Jiayi; Tian, Binghui; Ouyang, Qi

    2015-09-07

    Reconstructing the topological structure of biological regulatory networks from microarray expression data or data of protein expression profiles is one of major tasks in systems biology. In recent years, various mathematical methods have been developed to meet this task. Here, based on our previously reported reverse engineering method, we propose a new constraint, i.e., the minimum network constraint, to facilitate the reconstruction of biological networks. Three well studied regulatory networks (the budding yeast cell cycle network, the fission yeast cell cycle network, and the SOS network of Escherichia coli) were used as the test sets to verify the performance of this method. Numerical results show that the biological networks prefer to use the minimal networks to fulfill their functional tasks, making it possible to apply minimal network criteria in the network reconstruction process. Two scenarios were considered in the reconstruction process: generating data using different initial conditions; and generating data from knock out and over-expression experiments. In both cases, network structures are revealed faithfully in a few steps using our approach.

  11. Inferring orthologous gene regulatory networks using interspecies data fusion

    PubMed Central

    Penfold, Christopher A.; Millar, Jonathan B. A.; Wild, David L.

    2015-01-01

    Motivation: The ability to jointly learn gene regulatory networks (GRNs) in, or leverage GRNs between related species would allow the vast amount of legacy data obtained in model organisms to inform the GRNs of more complex, or economically or medically relevant counterparts. Examples include transferring information from Arabidopsis thaliana into related crop species for food security purposes, or from mice into humans for medical applications. Here we develop two related Bayesian approaches to network inference that allow GRNs to be jointly inferred in, or leveraged between, several related species: in one framework, network information is directly propagated between species; in the second hierarchical approach, network information is propagated via an unobserved ‘hypernetwork’. In both frameworks, information about network similarity is captured via graph kernels, with the networks additionally informed by species-specific time series gene expression data, when available, using Gaussian processes to model the dynamics of gene expression. Results: Results on in silico benchmarks demonstrate that joint inference, and leveraging of known networks between species, offers better accuracy than standalone inference. The direct propagation of network information via the non-hierarchical framework is more appropriate when there are relatively few species, while the hierarchical approach is better suited when there are many species. Both methods are robust to small amounts of mislabelling of orthologues. Finally, the use of Saccharomyces cerevisiae data and networks to inform inference of networks in the budding yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe predicts a novel role in cell cycle regulation for Gas1 (SPAC19B12.02c), a 1,3-beta-glucanosyltransferase. Availability and implementation: MATLAB code is available from http://go.warwick.ac.uk/systemsbiology/software/. Contact: d.l.wild@warwick.ac.uk Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics

  12. The gene regulatory network for breast cancer: integrated regulatory landscape of cancer hallmarks.

    PubMed

    Emmert-Streib, Frank; de Matos Simoes, Ricardo; Mullan, Paul; Haibe-Kains, Benjamin; Dehmer, Matthias

    2014-01-01

    In this study, we infer the breast cancer gene regulatory network from gene expression data. This network is obtained from the application of the BC3Net inference algorithm to a large-scale gene expression data set consisting of 351 patient samples. In order to elucidate the functional relevance of the inferred network, we are performing a Gene Ontology (GO) analysis for its structural components. Our analysis reveals that most significant GO-terms we find for the breast cancer network represent functional modules of biological processes that are described by known cancer hallmarks, including translation, immune response, cell cycle, organelle fission, mitosis, cell adhesion, RNA processing, RNA splicing and response to wounding. Furthermore, by using a curated list of census cancer genes, we find an enrichment in these functional modules. Finally, we study cooperative effects of chromosomes based on information of interacting genes in the beast cancer network. We find that chromosome 21 is most coactive with other chromosomes. To our knowledge this is the first study investigating the genome-scale breast cancer network.

  13. Dynamical modeling and analysis of large cellular regulatory networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bérenguier, D.; Chaouiya, C.; Monteiro, P. T.; Naldi, A.; Remy, E.; Thieffry, D.; Tichit, L.

    2013-06-01

    The dynamical analysis of large biological regulatory networks requires the development of scalable methods for mathematical modeling. Following the approach initially introduced by Thomas, we formalize the interactions between the components of a network in terms of discrete variables, functions, and parameters. Model simulations result in directed graphs, called state transition graphs. We are particularly interested in reachability properties and asymptotic behaviors, which correspond to terminal strongly connected components (or "attractors") in the state transition graph. A well-known problem is the exponential increase of the size of state transition graphs with the number of network components, in particular when using the biologically realistic asynchronous updating assumption. To address this problem, we have developed several complementary methods enabling the analysis of the behavior of large and complex logical models: (i) the definition of transition priority classes to simplify the dynamics; (ii) a model reduction method preserving essential dynamical properties, (iii) a novel algorithm to compact state transition graphs and directly generate compressed representations, emphasizing relevant transient and asymptotic dynamical properties. The power of an approach combining these different methods is demonstrated by applying them to a recent multilevel logical model for the network controlling CD4+ T helper cell response to antigen presentation and to a dozen cytokines. This model accounts for the differentiation of canonical Th1 and Th2 lymphocytes, as well as of inflammatory Th17 and regulatory T cells, along with many hybrid subtypes. All these methods have been implemented into the software GINsim, which enables the definition, the analysis, and the simulation of logical regulatory graphs.

  14. Protein Kinase CK2: Intricate Relationships within Regulatory Cellular Networks.

    PubMed

    Nuñez de Villavicencio-Diaz, Teresa; Rabalski, Adam J; Litchfield, David W

    2017-03-05

    Protein kinase CK2 is a small family of protein kinases that has been implicated in an expanding array of biological processes. While it is widely accepted that CK2 is a regulatory participant in a multitude of fundamental cellular processes, CK2 is often considered to be a constitutively active enzyme which raises questions about how it can be a regulatory participant in intricately controlled cellular processes. To resolve this apparent paradox, we have performed a systematic analysis of the published literature using text mining as well as mining of proteomic databases together with computational assembly of networks that involve CK2. These analyses reinforce the notion that CK2 is involved in a broad variety of biological processes and also reveal an extensive interplay between CK2 phosphorylation and other post-translational modifications. The interplay between CK2 and other post-translational modifications suggests that CK2 does have intricate roles in orchestrating cellular events. In this respect, phosphorylation of specific substrates by CK2 could be regulated by other post-translational modifications and CK2 could also have roles in modulating other post-translational modifications. Collectively, these observations suggest that the actions of CK2 are precisely coordinated with other constituents of regulatory cellular networks.

  15. Protein Kinase CK2: Intricate Relationships within Regulatory Cellular Networks

    PubMed Central

    Nuñez de Villavicencio-Diaz, Teresa; Rabalski, Adam J.; Litchfield, David W.

    2017-01-01

    Protein kinase CK2 is a small family of protein kinases that has been implicated in an expanding array of biological processes. While it is widely accepted that CK2 is a regulatory participant in a multitude of fundamental cellular processes, CK2 is often considered to be a constitutively active enzyme which raises questions about how it can be a regulatory participant in intricately controlled cellular processes. To resolve this apparent paradox, we have performed a systematic analysis of the published literature using text mining as well as mining of proteomic databases together with computational assembly of networks that involve CK2. These analyses reinforce the notion that CK2 is involved in a broad variety of biological processes and also reveal an extensive interplay between CK2 phosphorylation and other post-translational modifications. The interplay between CK2 and other post-translational modifications suggests that CK2 does have intricate roles in orchestrating cellular events. In this respect, phosphorylation of specific substrates by CK2 could be regulated by other post-translational modifications and CK2 could also have roles in modulating other post-translational modifications. Collectively, these observations suggest that the actions of CK2 are precisely coordinated with other constituents of regulatory cellular networks. PMID:28273877

  16. Genomic Reconstruction of the Transcriptional Regulatory Network in Bacillus subtilis

    PubMed Central

    Leyn, Semen A.; Kazanov, Marat D.; Sernova, Natalia V.; Ermakova, Ekaterina O.; Novichkov, Pavel S.

    2013-01-01

    The adaptation of microorganisms to their environment is controlled by complex transcriptional regulatory networks (TRNs), which are still only partially understood even for model species. Genome scale annotation of regulatory features of genes and TRN reconstruction are challenging tasks of microbial genomics. We used the knowledge-driven comparative-genomics approach implemented in the RegPredict Web server to infer TRN in the model Gram-positive bacterium Bacillus subtilis and 10 related Bacillales species. For transcription factor (TF) regulons, we combined the available information from the DBTBS database and the literature with bioinformatics tools, allowing inference of TF binding sites (TFBSs), comparative analysis of the genomic context of predicted TFBSs, functional assignment of target genes, and effector prediction. For RNA regulons, we used known RNA regulatory motifs collected in the Rfam database to scan genomes and analyze the genomic context of new RNA sites. The inferred TRN in B. subtilis comprises regulons for 129 TFs and 24 regulatory RNA families. First, we analyzed 66 TF regulons with previously known TFBSs in B. subtilis and projected them to other Bacillales genomes, resulting in refinement of TFBS motifs and identification of novel regulon members. Second, we inferred motifs and described regulons for 28 experimentally studied TFs with previously unknown TFBSs. Third, we discovered novel motifs and reconstructed regulons for 36 previously uncharacterized TFs. The inferred collection of regulons is available in the RegPrecise database (http://regprecise.lbl.gov/) and can be used in genetic experiments, metabolic modeling, and evolutionary analysis. PMID:23504016

  17. Regulatory Compliance in Multi-Tier Supplier Networks

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Goossen, Emray R.; Buster, Duke A.

    2014-01-01

    Over the years, avionics systems have increased in complexity to the point where 1st tier suppliers to an aircraft OEM find it financially beneficial to outsource designs of subsystems to 2nd tier and at times to 3rd tier suppliers. Combined with challenging schedule and budgetary pressures, the environment in which safety-critical systems are being developed introduces new hurdles for regulatory agencies and industry. This new environment of both complex systems and tiered development has raised concerns in the ability of the designers to ensure safety considerations are fully addressed throughout the tier levels. This has also raised questions about the sufficiency of current regulatory guidance to ensure: proper flow down of safety awareness, avionics application understanding at the lower tiers, OEM and 1st tier oversight practices, and capabilities of lower tier suppliers. Therefore, NASA established a research project to address Regulatory Compliance in a Multi-tier Supplier Network. This research was divided into three major study efforts: 1. Describe Modern Multi-tier Avionics Development 2. Identify Current Issues in Achieving Safety and Regulatory Compliance 3. Short-term/Long-term Recommendations Toward Higher Assurance Confidence This report presents our findings of the risks, weaknesses, and our recommendations. It also includes a collection of industry-identified risks, an assessment of guideline weaknesses related to multi-tier development of complex avionics systems, and a postulation of potential modifications to guidelines to close the identified risks and weaknesses.

  18. Implications of Developmental Gene Regulatory Networks Inside and Outside Developmental Biology.

    PubMed

    Peter, Isabelle S; Davidson, Eric H

    2016-01-01

    The insight that the genomic control of developmental process is encoded in the form of gene regulatory networks has profound impacts on many areas of modern bioscience. Most importantly, it affects developmental biology itself, as it means that a causal understanding of development requires knowledge of the architecture of regulatory network interactions. Furthermore, it follows that functional changes in developmental gene regulatory networks have to be considered as a primary mechanism for evolutionary process. We here discuss some of the recent advances in gene regulatory network biology and how they have affected our current understanding of development, evolution, and regulatory genomics.

  19. Reconstruction of transcriptional regulatory networks by stability-based network component analysis.

    PubMed

    Chen, Xi; Xuan, Jianhua; Wang, Chen; Shajahan, Ayesha N; Riggins, Rebecca B; Clarke, Robert

    2013-01-01

    Reliable inference of transcription regulatory networks is a challenging task in computational biology. Network component analysis (NCA) has become a powerful scheme to uncover regulatory networks behind complex biological processes. However, the performance of NCA is impaired by the high rate of false connections in binding information. In this paper, we integrate stability analysis with NCA to form a novel scheme, namely stability-based NCA (sNCA), for regulatory network identification. The method mainly addresses the inconsistency between gene expression data and binding motif information. Small perturbations are introduced to prior regulatory network, and the distance among multiple estimated transcript factor (TF) activities is computed to reflect the stability for each TF's binding network. For target gene identification, multivariate regression and t-statistic are used to calculate the significance for each TF-gene connection. Simulation studies are conducted and the experimental results show that sNCA can achieve an improved and robust performance in TF identification as compared to NCA. The approach for target gene identification is also demonstrated to be suitable for identifying true connections between TFs and their target genes. Furthermore, we have successfully applied sNCA to breast cancer data to uncover the role of TFs in regulating endocrine resistance in breast cancer.

  20. On the underlying assumptions of threshold Boolean networks as a model for genetic regulatory network behavior

    PubMed Central

    Tran, Van; McCall, Matthew N.; McMurray, Helene R.; Almudevar, Anthony

    2013-01-01

    Boolean networks (BoN) are relatively simple and interpretable models of gene regulatory networks. Specifying these models with fewer parameters while retaining their ability to describe complex regulatory relationships is an ongoing methodological challenge. Additionally, extending these models to incorporate variable gene decay rates, asynchronous gene response, and synergistic regulation while maintaining their Markovian nature increases the applicability of these models to genetic regulatory networks (GRN). We explore a previously-proposed class of BoNs characterized by linear threshold functions, which we refer to as threshold Boolean networks (TBN). Compared to traditional BoNs with unconstrained transition functions, these models require far fewer parameters and offer a more direct interpretation. However, the functional form of a TBN does result in a reduction in the regulatory relationships which can be modeled. We show that TBNs can be readily extended to permit self-degradation, with explicitly modeled degradation rates. We note that the introduction of variable degradation compromises the Markovian property fundamental to BoN models but show that a simple state augmentation procedure restores their Markovian nature. Next, we study the effect of assumptions regarding self-degradation on the set of possible steady states. Our findings are captured in two theorems relating self-degradation and regulatory feedback to the steady state behavior of a TBN. Finally, we explore assumptions of synchronous gene response and asynergistic regulation and show that TBNs can be easily extended to relax these assumptions. Applying our methods to the budding yeast cell-cycle network revealed that although the network is complex, its steady state is simplified by the presence of self-degradation and lack of purely positive regulatory cycles. PMID:24376454

  1. Topological effects of data incompleteness of gene regulatory networks

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background The topological analysis of biological networks has been a prolific topic in network science during the last decade. A persistent problem with this approach is the inherent uncertainty and noisy nature of the data. One of the cases in which this situation is more marked is that of transcriptional regulatory networks (TRNs) in bacteria. The datasets are incomplete because regulatory pathways associated to a relevant fraction of bacterial genes remain unknown. Furthermore, direction, strengths and signs of the links are sometimes unknown or simply overlooked. Finally, the experimental approaches to infer the regulations are highly heterogeneous, in a way that induces the appearance of systematic experimental-topological correlations. And yet, the quality of the available data increases constantly. Results In this work we capitalize on these advances to point out the influence of data (in)completeness and quality on some classical results on topological analysis of TRNs, specially regarding modularity at different levels. Conclusions In doing so, we identify the most relevant factors affecting the validity of previous findings, highlighting important caveats to future prokaryotic TRNs topological analysis. PMID:22920968

  2. A Maize Gene Regulatory Network for Phenolic Metabolism.

    PubMed

    Yang, Fan; Li, Wei; Jiang, Nan; Yu, Haidong; Morohashi, Kengo; Ouma, Wilberforce Zachary; Morales-Mantilla, Daniel E; Gomez-Cano, Fabio Andres; Mukundi, Eric; Prada-Salcedo, Luis Daniel; Velazquez, Roberto Alers; Valentin, Jasmin; Mejía-Guerra, Maria Katherine; Gray, John; Doseff, Andrea I; Grotewold, Erich

    2017-03-06

    The translation of the genotype into phenotype, represented for example by the expression of genes encoding enzymes required for the biosynthesis of phytochemicals that are important for interaction of plants with the environment, is largely carried out by transcription factors (TFs) that recognize specific cis-regulatory elements in the genes that they control. TFs and their target genes are organized in gene regulatory networks (GRNs), and thus uncovering GRN architecture presents an important biological challenge necessary to explain gene regulation. Linking TFs to the genes they control, central to understanding GRNs, can be carried out using gene- or TF-centered approaches. In this study, we employed a gene-centered approach utilizing the yeast one-hybrid assay to generate a network of protein-DNA interactions that participate in the transcriptional control of genes involved in the biosynthesis of maize phenolic compounds including general phenylpropanoids, lignins, and flavonoids. We identified 1100 protein-DNA interactions involving 54 phenolic gene promoters and 568 TFs. A set of 11 TFs recognized 10 or more promoters, suggesting a role in coordinating pathway gene expression. The integration of the gene-centered network with information derived from TF-centered approaches provides a foundation for a phenolics GRN characterized by interlaced feed-forward loops that link developmental regulators with biosynthetic genes.

  3. Large Scale Comparative Visualisation of Regulatory Networks with TRNDiff

    DOE PAGES

    Chua, Xin-Yi; Buckingham, Lawrence; Hogan, James M.; ...

    2015-06-01

    The advent of Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) technologies has seen explosive growth in genomic datasets, and dense coverage of related organisms, supporting study of subtle, strain-specific variations as a determinant of function. Such data collections present fresh and complex challenges for bioinformatics, those of comparing models of complex relationships across hundreds and even thousands of sequences. Transcriptional Regulatory Network (TRN) structures document the influence of regulatory proteins called Transcription Factors (TFs) on associated Target Genes (TGs). TRNs are routinely inferred from model systems or iterative search, and analysis at these scales requires simultaneous displays of multiple networks well beyond thosemore » of existing network visualisation tools [1]. In this paper we describe TRNDiff, an open source system supporting the comparative analysis and visualization of TRNs (and similarly structured data) from many genomes, allowing rapid identification of functional variations within species. The approach is demonstrated through a small scale multiple TRN analysis of the Fur iron-uptake system of Yersinia, suggesting a number of candidate virulence factors; and through a larger study exploiting integration with the RegPrecise database (http://regprecise.lbl.gov; [2]) - a collection of hundreds of manually curated and predicted transcription factor regulons drawn from across the entire spectrum of prokaryotic organisms.« less

  4. Large Scale Comparative Visualisation of Regulatory Networks with TRNDiff

    SciTech Connect

    Chua, Xin-Yi; Buckingham, Lawrence; Hogan, James M.; Novichkov, Pavel

    2015-06-01

    The advent of Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) technologies has seen explosive growth in genomic datasets, and dense coverage of related organisms, supporting study of subtle, strain-specific variations as a determinant of function. Such data collections present fresh and complex challenges for bioinformatics, those of comparing models of complex relationships across hundreds and even thousands of sequences. Transcriptional Regulatory Network (TRN) structures document the influence of regulatory proteins called Transcription Factors (TFs) on associated Target Genes (TGs). TRNs are routinely inferred from model systems or iterative search, and analysis at these scales requires simultaneous displays of multiple networks well beyond those of existing network visualisation tools [1]. In this paper we describe TRNDiff, an open source system supporting the comparative analysis and visualization of TRNs (and similarly structured data) from many genomes, allowing rapid identification of functional variations within species. The approach is demonstrated through a small scale multiple TRN analysis of the Fur iron-uptake system of Yersinia, suggesting a number of candidate virulence factors; and through a larger study exploiting integration with the RegPrecise database (http://regprecise.lbl.gov; [2]) - a collection of hundreds of manually curated and predicted transcription factor regulons drawn from across the entire spectrum of prokaryotic organisms.

  5. Inferring the role of transcription factors in regulatory networks

    PubMed Central

    Veber, Philippe; Guziolowski, Carito; Le Borgne, Michel; Radulescu, Ovidiu; Siegel, Anne

    2008-01-01

    Background Expression profiles obtained from multiple perturbation experiments are increasingly used to reconstruct transcriptional regulatory networks, from well studied, simple organisms up to higher eukaryotes. Admittedly, a key ingredient in developing a reconstruction method is its ability to integrate heterogeneous sources of information, as well as to comply with practical observability issues: measurements can be scarce or noisy. In this work, we show how to combine a network of genetic regulations with a set of expression profiles, in order to infer the functional effect of the regulations, as inducer or repressor. Our approach is based on a consistency rule between a network and the signs of variation given by expression arrays. Results We evaluate our approach in several settings of increasing complexity. First, we generate artificial expression data on a transcriptional network of E. coli extracted from the literature (1529 nodes and 3802 edges), and we estimate that 30% of the regulations can be annotated with about 30 profiles. We additionally prove that at most 40.8% of the network can be inferred using our approach. Second, we use this network in order to validate the predictions obtained with a compendium of real expression profiles. We describe a filtering algorithm that generates particularly reliable predictions. Finally, we apply our inference approach to S. cerevisiae transcriptional network (2419 nodes and 4344 interactions), by combining ChIP-chip data and 15 expression profiles. We are able to detect and isolate inconsistencies between the expression profiles and a significant portion of the model (15% of all the interactions). In addition, we report predictions for 14.5% of all interactions. Conclusion Our approach does not require accurate expression levels nor times series. Nevertheless, we show on both data, real and artificial, that a relatively small number of perturbation experiments are enough to determine a significant portion of

  6. SAGA: a hybrid search algorithm for Bayesian Network structure learning of transcriptional regulatory networks.

    PubMed

    Adabor, Emmanuel S; Acquaah-Mensah, George K; Oduro, Francis T

    2015-02-01

    Bayesian Networks have been used for the inference of transcriptional regulatory relationships among genes, and are valuable for obtaining biological insights. However, finding optimal Bayesian Network (BN) is NP-hard. Thus, heuristic approaches have sought to effectively solve this problem. In this work, we develop a hybrid search method combining Simulated Annealing with a Greedy Algorithm (SAGA). SAGA explores most of the search space by undergoing a two-phase search: first with a Simulated Annealing search and then with a Greedy search. Three sets of background-corrected and normalized microarray datasets were used to test the algorithm. BN structure learning was also conducted using the datasets, and other established search methods as implemented in BANJO (Bayesian Network Inference with Java Objects). The Bayesian Dirichlet Equivalence (BDe) metric was used to score the networks produced with SAGA. SAGA predicted transcriptional regulatory relationships among genes in networks that evaluated to higher BDe scores with high sensitivities and specificities. Thus, the proposed method competes well with existing search algorithms for Bayesian Network structure learning of transcriptional regulatory networks.

  7. Enhancing gene regulatory network inference through data integration with markov random fields.

    PubMed

    Banf, Michael; Rhee, Seung Y

    2017-02-01

    A gene regulatory network links transcription factors to their target genes and represents a map of transcriptional regulation. Much progress has been made in deciphering gene regulatory networks computationally. However, gene regulatory network inference for most eukaryotic organisms remain challenging. To improve the accuracy of gene regulatory network inference and facilitate candidate selection for experimentation, we developed an algorithm called GRACE (Gene Regulatory network inference ACcuracy Enhancement). GRACE exploits biological a priori and heterogeneous data integration to generate high- confidence network predictions for eukaryotic organisms using Markov Random Fields in a semi-supervised fashion. GRACE uses a novel optimization scheme to integrate regulatory evidence and biological relevance. It is particularly suited for model learning with sparse regulatory gold standard data. We show GRACE's potential to produce high confidence regulatory networks compared to state of the art approaches using Drosophila melanogaster and Arabidopsis thaliana data. In an A. thaliana developmental gene regulatory network, GRACE recovers cell cycle related regulatory mechanisms and further hypothesizes several novel regulatory links, including a putative control mechanism of vascular structure formation due to modifications in cell proliferation.

  8. Enhancing gene regulatory network inference through data integration with markov random fields

    PubMed Central

    Banf, Michael; Rhee, Seung Y.

    2017-01-01

    A gene regulatory network links transcription factors to their target genes and represents a map of transcriptional regulation. Much progress has been made in deciphering gene regulatory networks computationally. However, gene regulatory network inference for most eukaryotic organisms remain challenging. To improve the accuracy of gene regulatory network inference and facilitate candidate selection for experimentation, we developed an algorithm called GRACE (Gene Regulatory network inference ACcuracy Enhancement). GRACE exploits biological a priori and heterogeneous data integration to generate high- confidence network predictions for eukaryotic organisms using Markov Random Fields in a semi-supervised fashion. GRACE uses a novel optimization scheme to integrate regulatory evidence and biological relevance. It is particularly suited for model learning with sparse regulatory gold standard data. We show GRACE’s potential to produce high confidence regulatory networks compared to state of the art approaches using Drosophila melanogaster and Arabidopsis thaliana data. In an A. thaliana developmental gene regulatory network, GRACE recovers cell cycle related regulatory mechanisms and further hypothesizes several novel regulatory links, including a putative control mechanism of vascular structure formation due to modifications in cell proliferation. PMID:28145456

  9. Enhancing gene regulatory network inference through data integration with markov random fields

    DOE PAGES

    Banf, Michael; Rhee, Seung Y.

    2017-02-01

    Here, a gene regulatory network links transcription factors to their target genes and represents a map of transcriptional regulation. Much progress has been made in deciphering gene regulatory networks computationally. However, gene regulatory network inference for most eukaryotic organisms remain challenging. To improve the accuracy of gene regulatory network inference and facilitate candidate selection for experimentation, we developed an algorithm called GRACE (Gene Regulatory network inference ACcuracy Enhancement). GRACE exploits biological a priori and heterogeneous data integration to generate high- confidence network predictions for eukaryotic organisms using Markov Random Fields in a semi-supervised fashion. GRACE uses a novel optimization schememore » to integrate regulatory evidence and biological relevance. It is particularly suited for model learning with sparse regulatory gold standard data. We show GRACE’s potential to produce high confidence regulatory networks compared to state of the art approaches using Drosophila melanogaster and Arabidopsis thaliana data. In an A. thaliana developmental gene regulatory network, GRACE recovers cell cycle related regulatory mechanisms and further hypothesizes several novel regulatory links, including a putative control mechanism of vascular structure formation due to modifications in cell proliferation.« less

  10. Algebraic model checking for Boolean gene regulatory networks.

    PubMed

    Tran, Quoc-Nam

    2011-01-01

    We present a computational method in which modular and Groebner bases (GB) computation in Boolean rings are used for solving problems in Boolean gene regulatory networks (BN). In contrast to other known algebraic approaches, the degree of intermediate polynomials during the calculation of Groebner bases using our method will never grow resulting in a significant improvement in running time and memory space consumption. We also show how calculation in temporal logic for model checking can be done by means of our direct and efficient Groebner basis computation in Boolean rings. We present our experimental results in finding attractors and control strategies of Boolean networks to illustrate our theoretical arguments. The results are promising. Our algebraic approach is more efficient than the state-of-the-art model checker NuSMV on BNs. More importantly, our approach finds all solutions for the BN problems.

  11. Evaluation of unbound free heme in plant cells by differential acetone extraction.

    PubMed

    Espinas, Nino A; Kobayashi, Koichi; Takahashi, Shigekazu; Mochizuki, Nobuyoshi; Masuda, Tatsuru

    2012-07-01

    Heme functions not only as a prosthetic group of hemoproteins but also as a regulatory molecule, suggesting the presence of 'free' heme. Classically, total non-covalently bound heme is extracted from plant samples with acidic acetone after removal of pigments with basic and neutral acetone. Earlier work proposed that free heme can be selectively extracted into basic acetone. Using authentic hemoproteins, we confirmed that acidic acetone can quantitatively extract heme, while no heme was extracted into neutral acetone. Meanwhile, a certain amount of heme was extracted into basic acetone from hemoglobin and myoglobin. Moreover, basic acetone extracted loosely bound heme from bovine serum albumin, implying that the nature of hemoproteins largely influences heme extraction into basic acetone. Using a highly sensitive heme assay, we found that basic and neutral acetone can extract low levels of heme from plant samples. In addition, neutral acetone quantitatively extracted free heme when it was externally added to plant homogenates. Furthermore, the level of neutral acetone-extractable heme remained unchanged by precursor (5-aminolevulinic acid) feeding, while increased by norflurazon treatment which abolishes chloroplast biogenesis. However, changes in these heme levels did not correlate to genomes uncoupled phenotypes, suggesting that the level of unbound free heme would not affect retrograde signaling from plastids to the nucleus. The present data demonstrate that the combination of single-step acetone extraction following a sensitive heme assay is the ideal method for determining total and free heme in plants.

  12. A regulatory network controls nephrocan expression and midgut patterning

    PubMed Central

    Hou, Juan; Wei, Wei; Saund, Ranajeet S.; Xiang, Ping; Cunningham, Thomas J.; Yi, Yuyin; Alder, Olivia; Lu, Daphne Y. D.; Savory, Joanne G. A.; Krentz, Nicole A. J.; Montpetit, Rachel; Cullum, Rebecca; Hofs, Nicole; Lohnes, David; Humphries, R. Keith; Yamanaka, Yojiro; Duester, Gregg; Saijoh, Yukio; Hoodless, Pamela A.

    2014-01-01

    Although many regulatory networks involved in defining definitive endoderm have been identified, the mechanisms through which these networks interact to pattern the endoderm are less well understood. To explore the mechanisms involved in midgut patterning, we dissected the transcriptional regulatory elements of nephrocan (Nepn), the earliest known midgut specific gene in mice. We observed that Nepn expression is dramatically reduced in Sox17−/− and Raldh2−/− embryos compared with wild-type embryos. We further show that Nepn is directly regulated by Sox17 and the retinoic acid (RA) receptor via two enhancer elements located upstream of the gene. Moreover, Nepn expression is modulated by Activin signaling, with high levels inhibiting and low levels enhancing RA-dependent expression. In Foxh1−/− embryos in which Nodal signaling is reduced, the Nepn expression domain is expanded into the anterior gut region, confirming that Nodal signaling can modulate its expression in vivo. Together, Sox17 is required for Nepn expression in the definitive endoderm, while RA signaling restricts expression to the midgut region. A balance of Nodal/Activin signaling regulates the anterior boundary of the midgut expression domain. PMID:25209250

  13. Beyond antioxidant genes in the ancient NRF2 regulatory network

    PubMed Central

    Lacher, Sarah E.; Lee, Joslynn S.; Wang, Xuting; Campbell, Michelle R.; Bell, Douglas A.; Slattery, Matthew

    2016-01-01

    NRF2, a basic leucine zipper transcription factor encoded by the gene NFE2L2, is a master regulator of the transcriptional response to oxidative stress. NRF2 is structurally and functionally conserved from insects to humans, and it heterodimerizes with the small MAF transcription factors to bind a consensus DNA sequence (the antioxidant response element, or ARE) and regulate gene expression. We have used genome-wide chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP-seq) and gene expression data to identify direct NRF2 target genes in Drosophila and humans. These data have allowed us to construct the deeply conserved ancient NRF2 regulatory network – target genes that are conserved from Drosophila to human. The ancient network consists of canonical antioxidant genes, as well as genes related to proteasomal pathways, metabolism, and a number of less expected genes. We have also used enhancer reporter assays and electrophoretic mobility shift assays to confirm NRF2-mediated regulation of ARE (antioxidant response element) activity at a number of these novel target genes. Interestingly, the ancient network also highlights a prominent negative feedback loop; this, combined with the finding that and NRF2-mediated regulatory output is tightly linked to the quality of the ARE it is targeting, suggests that precise regulation of nuclear NRF2 concentration is necessary to achieve proper quantitative regulation of distinct gene sets. Together, these findings highlight the importance of balance in the NRF2-ARE pathway, and indicate that NRF2-mediated regulation of xenobiotic metabolism, glucose metabolism, and proteostasis have been central to this pathway since its inception. PMID:26163000

  14. Protein modularity, cooperative binding, and hybrid regulatory states underlie transcriptional network diversification.

    PubMed

    Baker, Christopher R; Booth, Lauren N; Sorrells, Trevor R; Johnson, Alexander D

    2012-09-28

    We examine how different transcriptional network structures can evolve from an ancestral network. By characterizing how the ancestral mode of gene regulation for genes specific to a-type cells in yeast species evolved from an activating paradigm to a repressing one, we show that regulatory protein modularity, conversion of one cis-regulatory sequence to another, distribution of binding energy among protein-protein and protein-DNA interactions, and exploitation of ancestral network features all contribute to the evolution of a novel regulatory mode. The formation of this derived mode of regulation did not disrupt the ancestral mode and thereby created a hybrid regulatory state where both means of transcription regulation (ancestral and derived) contribute to the conserved expression pattern of the network. Finally, we show how this hybrid regulatory state has resolved in different ways in different lineages to generate the diversity of regulatory network structures observed in modern species.

  15. RegNetwork: an integrated database of transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulatory networks in human and mouse.

    PubMed

    Liu, Zhi-Ping; Wu, Canglin; Miao, Hongyu; Wu, Hulin

    2015-01-01

    Transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression is of fundamental importance to numerous biological processes. Nowadays, an increasing amount of gene regulatory relationships have been documented in various databases and literature. However, to more efficiently exploit such knowledge for biomedical research and applications, it is necessary to construct a genome-wide regulatory network database to integrate the information on gene regulatory relationships that are widely scattered in many different places. Therefore, in this work, we build a knowledge-based database, named 'RegNetwork', of gene regulatory networks for human and mouse by collecting and integrating the documented regulatory interactions among transcription factors (TFs), microRNAs (miRNAs) and target genes from 25 selected databases. Moreover, we also inferred and incorporated potential regulatory relationships based on transcription factor binding site (TFBS) motifs into RegNetwork. As a result, RegNetwork contains a comprehensive set of experimentally observed or predicted transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulatory relationships, and the database framework is flexibly designed for potential extensions to include gene regulatory networks for other organisms in the future. Based on RegNetwork, we characterized the statistical and topological properties of genome-wide regulatory networks for human and mouse, we also extracted and interpreted simple yet important network motifs that involve the interplays between TF-miRNA and their targets. In summary, RegNetwork provides an integrated resource on the prior information for gene regulatory relationships, and it enables us to further investigate context-specific transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulatory interactions based on domain-specific experimental data. Database URL: http://www.regnetworkweb.org.

  16. Pharyngeal mesoderm regulatory network controls cardiac and head muscle morphogenesis.

    PubMed

    Harel, Itamar; Maezawa, Yoshiro; Avraham, Roi; Rinon, Ariel; Ma, Hsiao-Yen; Cross, Joe W; Leviatan, Noam; Hegesh, Julius; Roy, Achira; Jacob-Hirsch, Jasmine; Rechavi, Gideon; Carvajal, Jaime; Tole, Shubha; Kioussi, Chrissa; Quaggin, Susan; Tzahor, Eldad

    2012-11-13

    The search for developmental mechanisms driving vertebrate organogenesis has paved the way toward a deeper understanding of birth defects. During embryogenesis, parts of the heart and craniofacial muscles arise from pharyngeal mesoderm (PM) progenitors. Here, we reveal a hierarchical regulatory network of a set of transcription factors expressed in the PM that initiates heart and craniofacial organogenesis. Genetic perturbation of this network in mice resulted in heart and craniofacial muscle defects, revealing robust cross-regulation between its members. We identified Lhx2 as a previously undescribed player during cardiac and pharyngeal muscle development. Lhx2 and Tcf21 genetically interact with Tbx1, the major determinant in the etiology of DiGeorge/velo-cardio-facial/22q11.2 deletion syndrome. Furthermore, knockout of these genes in the mouse recapitulates specific cardiac features of this syndrome. We suggest that PM-derived cardiogenesis and myogenesis are network properties rather than properties specific to individual PM members. These findings shed new light on the developmental underpinnings of congenital defects.

  17. Pharyngeal mesoderm regulatory network controls cardiac and head muscle morphogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Harel, Itamar; Maezawa, Yoshiro; Avraham, Roi; Rinon, Ariel; Ma, Hsiao-Yen; Cross, Joe W.; Leviatan, Noam; Hegesh, Julius; Roy, Achira; Jacob-Hirsch, Jasmine; Rechavi, Gideon; Carvajal, Jaime; Tole, Shubha; Kioussi, Chrissa; Quaggin, Susan; Tzahor, Eldad

    2012-01-01

    The search for developmental mechanisms driving vertebrate organogenesis has paved the way toward a deeper understanding of birth defects. During embryogenesis, parts of the heart and craniofacial muscles arise from pharyngeal mesoderm (PM) progenitors. Here, we reveal a hierarchical regulatory network of a set of transcription factors expressed in the PM that initiates heart and craniofacial organogenesis. Genetic perturbation of this network in mice resulted in heart and craniofacial muscle defects, revealing robust cross-regulation between its members. We identified Lhx2 as a previously undescribed player during cardiac and pharyngeal muscle development. Lhx2 and Tcf21 genetically interact with Tbx1, the major determinant in the etiology of DiGeorge/velo-cardio-facial/22q11.2 deletion syndrome. Furthermore, knockout of these genes in the mouse recapitulates specific cardiac features of this syndrome. We suggest that PM-derived cardiogenesis and myogenesis are network properties rather than properties specific to individual PM members. These findings shed new light on the developmental underpinnings of congenital defects. PMID:23112163

  18. Regulatory networks and connected components of the neutral space. A look at functional islands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boldhaus, G.; Klemm, K.

    2010-09-01

    The functioning of a living cell is largely determined by the structure of its regulatory network, comprising non-linear interactions between regulatory genes. An important factor for the stability and evolvability of such regulatory systems is neutrality - typically a large number of alternative network structures give rise to the necessary dynamics. Here we study the discretized regulatory dynamics of the yeast cell cycle [Li et al., PNAS, 2004] and the set of networks capable of reproducing it, which we call functional. Among these, the empirical yeast wildtype network is close to optimal with respect to sparse wiring. Under point mutations, which establish or delete single interactions, the neutral space of functional networks is fragmented into ≈ 4.7 × 108 components. One of the smaller ones contains the wildtype network. On average, functional networks reachable from the wildtype by mutations are sparser, have higher noise resilience and fewer fixed point attractors as compared with networks outside of this wildtype component.

  19. Physiological regulatory networks: ecological roles and evolutionary constraints.

    PubMed

    Cohen, Alan A; Martin, Lynn B; Wingfield, John C; McWilliams, Scott R; Dunne, Jennifer A

    2012-08-01

    Ecological and evolutionary physiology has traditionally focused on one aspect of physiology at a time. Here, we discuss the implications of considering physiological regulatory networks (PRNs) as integrated wholes, a perspective that reveals novel roles for physiology in organismal ecology and evolution. For example, evolutionary response to changes in resource abundance might be constrained by the role of dietary micronutrients in immune response regulation, given a particular pathogen environment. Because many physiological components impact more than one process, organismal homeostasis is maintained, individual fitness is determined and evolutionary change is constrained (or facilitated) by interactions within PRNs. We discuss how PRN structure and its system-level properties could determine both individual performance and patterns of physiological evolution.

  20. An Arabidopsis gene regulatory network for secondary cell wall synthesis

    SciTech Connect

    Taylor-Teeples, M.; Lin, L.; de Lucas, M.; Turco, G.; Toal, T. W.; Gaudinier, A.; Young, N. F.; Trabucco, G. M.; Veling, M. T.; Lamothe, R.; Handakumbura, P. P.; Xiong, G.; Wang, C.; Corwin, J.; Tsoukalas, A.; Zhang, L.; Ware, D.; Pauly, M.; Kliebenstein, D. J.; Dehesh, K.; Tagkopoulos, I.; Breton, G.; Pruneda-Paz, J. L.; Ahnert, S. E.; Kay, S. A.; Hazen, S. P.; Brady, S. M.

    2014-12-24

    The plant cell wall is an important factor for determining cell shape, function and response to the environment. Secondary cell walls, such as those found in xylem, are composed of cellulose, hemicelluloses and lignin and account for the bulk of plant biomass. The coordination between transcriptional regulation of synthesis for each polymer is complex and vital to cell function. A regulatory hierarchy of developmental switches has been proposed, although the full complement of regulators remains unknown. In this paper, we present a protein–DNA network between Arabidopsis thaliana transcription factors and secondary cell wall metabolic genes with gene expression regulated by a series of feed-forward loops. This model allowed us to develop and validate new hypotheses about secondary wall gene regulation under abiotic stress. Distinct stresses are able to perturb targeted genes to potentially promote functional adaptation. Finally, these interactions will serve as a foundation for understanding the regulation of a complex, integral plant component.

  1. Evolutionary expansion of a regulatory network by counter-silencing

    PubMed Central

    Will, William R.; Bale, Denise H.; Reid, Philip J.; Libby, Stephen J.; Fang, Ferric C.

    2014-01-01

    Horizontal gene transfer plays a major role in bacterial evolution. Successful acquisition of new genes requires their incorporation into existing regulatory networks. This study compares the regulation of conserved genes in the PhoPQ regulon of Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium with that of PhoPQ-regulated horizontally-acquired genes, which are silenced by the histone-like protein H-NS. We demonstrate that PhoP up-regulates conserved and horizontally-acquired genes by distinct mechanisms. Conserved genes are regulated by classical PhoP-mediated activation and are invariant in promoter architecture, whereas horizontally-acquired genes exhibit variable promoter architecture and are regulated by PhoP-mediated counter-silencing. Biochemical analyses show that a horizontally-acquired promoter adopts different structures in the silenced and counter-silenced states, implicating the remodeling of the H-NS nucleoprotein filament and the subsequent restoration of open complex formation as the central mechanism of counter-silencing. Our results indicate that counter-silencing is favored in the regulatory integration of newly-acquired genes because it is able to accommodate multiple promoter architectures. PMID:25348042

  2. Integrated Approach to Reconstruction of Microbial Regulatory Networks

    SciTech Connect

    Rodionov, Dmitry A; Novichkov, Pavel S

    2013-11-04

    This project had the goal(s) of development of integrated bioinformatics platform for genome-scale inference and visualization of transcriptional regulatory networks (TRNs) in bacterial genomes. The work was done in Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute (SBMRI, P.I. D.A. Rodionov) and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL, co-P.I. P.S. Novichkov). The developed computational resources include: (1) RegPredict web-platform for TRN inference and regulon reconstruction in microbial genomes, and (2) RegPrecise database for collection, visualization and comparative analysis of transcriptional regulons reconstructed by comparative genomics. These analytical resources were selected as key components in the DOE Systems Biology KnowledgeBase (SBKB). The high-quality data accumulated in RegPrecise will provide essential datasets of reference regulons in diverse microbes to enable automatic reconstruction of draft TRNs in newly sequenced genomes. We outline our progress toward the three aims of this grant proposal, which were: Develop integrated platform for genome-scale regulon reconstruction; Infer regulatory annotations in several groups of bacteria and building of reference collections of microbial regulons; and Develop KnowledgeBase on microbial transcriptional regulation.

  3. Integrated module and gene-specific regulatory inference implicates upstream signaling networks.

    PubMed

    Roy, Sushmita; Lagree, Stephen; Hou, Zhonggang; Thomson, James A; Stewart, Ron; Gasch, Audrey P

    2013-01-01

    Regulatory networks that control gene expression are important in diverse biological contexts including stress response and development. Each gene's regulatory program is determined by module-level regulation (e.g. co-regulation via the same signaling system), as well as gene-specific determinants that can fine-tune expression. We present a novel approach, Modular regulatory network learning with per gene information (MERLIN), that infers regulatory programs for individual genes while probabilistically constraining these programs to reveal module-level organization of regulatory networks. Using edge-, regulator- and module-based comparisons of simulated networks of known ground truth, we find MERLIN reconstructs regulatory programs of individual genes as well or better than existing approaches of network reconstruction, while additionally identifying modular organization of the regulatory networks. We use MERLIN to dissect global transcriptional behavior in two biological contexts: yeast stress response and human embryonic stem cell differentiation. Regulatory modules inferred by MERLIN capture co-regulatory relationships between signaling proteins and downstream transcription factors thereby revealing the upstream signaling systems controlling transcriptional responses. The inferred networks are enriched for regulators with genetic or physical interactions, supporting the inference, and identify modules of functionally related genes bound by the same transcriptional regulators. Our method combines the strengths of per-gene and per-module methods to reveal new insights into transcriptional regulation in stress and development.

  4. Integrated Module and Gene-Specific Regulatory Inference Implicates Upstream Signaling Networks

    PubMed Central

    Roy, Sushmita; Lagree, Stephen; Hou, Zhonggang; Thomson, James A.; Stewart, Ron; Gasch, Audrey P.

    2013-01-01

    Regulatory networks that control gene expression are important in diverse biological contexts including stress response and development. Each gene's regulatory program is determined by module-level regulation (e.g. co-regulation via the same signaling system), as well as gene-specific determinants that can fine-tune expression. We present a novel approach, Modular regulatory network learning with per gene information (MERLIN), that infers regulatory programs for individual genes while probabilistically constraining these programs to reveal module-level organization of regulatory networks. Using edge-, regulator- and module-based comparisons of simulated networks of known ground truth, we find MERLIN reconstructs regulatory programs of individual genes as well or better than existing approaches of network reconstruction, while additionally identifying modular organization of the regulatory networks. We use MERLIN to dissect global transcriptional behavior in two biological contexts: yeast stress response and human embryonic stem cell differentiation. Regulatory modules inferred by MERLIN capture co-regulatory relationships between signaling proteins and downstream transcription factors thereby revealing the upstream signaling systems controlling transcriptional responses. The inferred networks are enriched for regulators with genetic or physical interactions, supporting the inference, and identify modules of functionally related genes bound by the same transcriptional regulators. Our method combines the strengths of per-gene and per-module methods to reveal new insights into transcriptional regulation in stress and development. PMID:24146602

  5. Graphlet Based Metrics for the Comparison of Gene Regulatory Networks

    PubMed Central

    Martin, Alberto J. M.; Dominguez, Calixto; Contreras-Riquelme, Sebastián; Holmes, David S.; Perez-Acle, Tomas

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the control of gene expression remains one of the main challenges in the post-genomic era. Accordingly, a plethora of methods exists to identify variations in gene expression levels. These variations underlay almost all relevant biological phenomena, including disease and adaptation to environmental conditions. However, computational tools to identify how regulation changes are scarce. Regulation of gene expression is usually depicted in the form of a gene regulatory network (GRN). Structural changes in a GRN over time and conditions represent variations in the regulation of gene expression. Like other biological networks, GRNs are composed of basic building blocks called graphlets. As a consequence, two new metrics based on graphlets are proposed in this work: REConstruction Rate (REC) and REC Graphlet Degree (RGD). REC determines the rate of graphlet similarity between different states of a network and RGD identifies the subset of nodes with the highest topological variation. In other words, RGD discerns how th GRN was rewired. REC and RGD were used to compare the local structure of nodes in condition-specific GRNs obtained from gene expression data of Escherichia coli, forming biofilms and cultured in suspension. According to our results, most of the network local structure remains unaltered in the two compared conditions. Nevertheless, changes reported by RGD necessarily imply that a different cohort of regulators (i.e. transcription factors (TFs)) appear on the scene, shedding light on how the regulation of gene expression occurs when E. coli transits from suspension to biofilm. Consequently, we propose that both metrics REC and RGD should be adopted as a quantitative approach to conduct differential analyses of GRNs. A tool that implements both metrics is available as an on-line web server (http://dlab.cl/loto). PMID:27695050

  6. Graphlet Based Metrics for the Comparison of Gene Regulatory Networks.

    PubMed

    Martin, Alberto J M; Dominguez, Calixto; Contreras-Riquelme, Sebastián; Holmes, David S; Perez-Acle, Tomas

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the control of gene expression remains one of the main challenges in the post-genomic era. Accordingly, a plethora of methods exists to identify variations in gene expression levels. These variations underlay almost all relevant biological phenomena, including disease and adaptation to environmental conditions. However, computational tools to identify how regulation changes are scarce. Regulation of gene expression is usually depicted in the form of a gene regulatory network (GRN). Structural changes in a GRN over time and conditions represent variations in the regulation of gene expression. Like other biological networks, GRNs are composed of basic building blocks called graphlets. As a consequence, two new metrics based on graphlets are proposed in this work: REConstruction Rate (REC) and REC Graphlet Degree (RGD). REC determines the rate of graphlet similarity between different states of a network and RGD identifies the subset of nodes with the highest topological variation. In other words, RGD discerns how th GRN was rewired. REC and RGD were used to compare the local structure of nodes in condition-specific GRNs obtained from gene expression data of Escherichia coli, forming biofilms and cultured in suspension. According to our results, most of the network local structure remains unaltered in the two compared conditions. Nevertheless, changes reported by RGD necessarily imply that a different cohort of regulators (i.e. transcription factors (TFs)) appear on the scene, shedding light on how the regulation of gene expression occurs when E. coli transits from suspension to biofilm. Consequently, we propose that both metrics REC and RGD should be adopted as a quantitative approach to conduct differential analyses of GRNs. A tool that implements both metrics is available as an on-line web server (http://dlab.cl/loto).

  7. Rearrangements of the transcriptional regulatory networks of metabolic pathways in fungi.

    PubMed

    Lavoie, Hugo; Hogues, Hervé; Whiteway, Malcolm

    2009-12-01

    Growing evidence suggests that transcriptional regulatory networks in many organisms are highly flexible. Here, we discuss the evolution of transcriptional regulatory networks governing the metabolic machinery of sequenced ascomycetes. In particular, recent work has shown that transcriptional rewiring is common in regulons controlling processes such as production of ribosome components and metabolism of carbohydrates and lipids. We note that dramatic rearrangements of the transcriptional regulatory components of metabolic functions have occurred among ascomycetes species.

  8. Regulatory component analysis: a semi-blind extraction approach to infer gene regulatory networks with imperfect biological knowledge

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Chen; Xuan, Jianhua; Shih, Ie-Ming; Clarke, Robert; Wang, Yue

    2011-01-01

    With the advent of high-throughput biotechnology capable of monitoring genomic signals, it becomes increasingly promising to understand molecular cellular mechanisms through systems biology approaches. One of the active research topics in systems biology is to infer gene transcriptional regulatory networks using various genomic data; this inference problem can be formulated as a linear model with latent signals associated with some regulatory proteins called transcription factors (TFs). As common statistical assumptions may not hold for genomic signals, typical latent variable algorithms such as independent component analysis (ICA) are incapable to reveal underlying true regulatory signals. Liao et al. [1] proposed to perform inference using an approach named network component analysis (NCA), the optimization of which is achieved by a least-squares fitting approach with biological knowledge constraints. However, the incompleteness of biological knowledge and its inconsistency with gene expression data are not considered in the original NCA solution, which could greatly affect the inference accuracy. To overcome these limitations, we propose a linear extraction scheme, namely regulatory component analysis (RCA), to infer underlying regulatory signals even with partial biological knowledge. Numerical simulations show a significant improvement of our proposed RCA over NCA, not only when signal-to-noise-ratio (SNR) is low, but also when the given biological knowledge is incomplete and inconsistent to gene expression data. Furthermore, real biological experiments on E. coli are performed for regulatory network inference in comparison with several typical linear latent variable methods, which again demonstrates the effectiveness and improved performance of the proposed algorithm. PMID:22685363

  9. A Parallel Attractor Finding Algorithm Based on Boolean Satisfiability for Genetic Regulatory Networks

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Wensheng; Yang, Guowu; Wu, Wei; He, Lei; Sun, Mingyu

    2014-01-01

    In biological systems, the dynamic analysis method has gained increasing attention in the past decade. The Boolean network is the most common model of a genetic regulatory network. The interactions of activation and inhibition in the genetic regulatory network are modeled as a set of functions of the Boolean network, while the state transitions in the Boolean network reflect the dynamic property of a genetic regulatory network. A difficult problem for state transition analysis is the finding of attractors. In this paper, we modeled the genetic regulatory network as a Boolean network and proposed a solving algorithm to tackle the attractor finding problem. In the proposed algorithm, we partitioned the Boolean network into several blocks consisting of the strongly connected components according to their gradients, and defined the connection between blocks as decision node. Based on the solutions calculated on the decision nodes and using a satisfiability solving algorithm, we identified the attractors in the state transition graph of each block. The proposed algorithm is benchmarked on a variety of genetic regulatory networks. Compared with existing algorithms, it achieved similar performance on small test cases, and outperformed it on larger and more complex ones, which happens to be the trend of the modern genetic regulatory network. Furthermore, while the existing satisfiability-based algorithms cannot be parallelized due to their inherent algorithm design, the proposed algorithm exhibits a good scalability on parallel computing architectures. PMID:24718686

  10. A parallel attractor-finding algorithm based on Boolean satisfiability for genetic regulatory networks.

    PubMed

    Guo, Wensheng; Yang, Guowu; Wu, Wei; He, Lei; Sun, Mingyu

    2014-01-01

    In biological systems, the dynamic analysis method has gained increasing attention in the past decade. The Boolean network is the most common model of a genetic regulatory network. The interactions of activation and inhibition in the genetic regulatory network are modeled as a set of functions of the Boolean network, while the state transitions in the Boolean network reflect the dynamic property of a genetic regulatory network. A difficult problem for state transition analysis is the finding of attractors. In this paper, we modeled the genetic regulatory network as a Boolean network and proposed a solving algorithm to tackle the attractor finding problem. In the proposed algorithm, we partitioned the Boolean network into several blocks consisting of the strongly connected components according to their gradients, and defined the connection between blocks as decision node. Based on the solutions calculated on the decision nodes and using a satisfiability solving algorithm, we identified the attractors in the state transition graph of each block. The proposed algorithm is benchmarked on a variety of genetic regulatory networks. Compared with existing algorithms, it achieved similar performance on small test cases, and outperformed it on larger and more complex ones, which happens to be the trend of the modern genetic regulatory network. Furthermore, while the existing satisfiability-based algorithms cannot be parallelized due to their inherent algorithm design, the proposed algorithm exhibits a good scalability on parallel computing architectures.

  11. Regulatory Networks Controlling Plant Cold Acclimation or Low Temperature Regulatory Networks Controlling Cold Acclimation in Arabidopsis (2011 JGI User Meeting)

    ScienceCinema

    Thomashow, Mike

    2016-07-12

    The U.S. Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute (JGI) invited scientists interested in the application of genomics to bioenergy and environmental issues, as well as all current and prospective users and collaborators, to attend the annual DOE JGI Genomics of Energy & Environment Meeting held March 22-24, 2011 in Walnut Creek, Calif. The emphasis of this meeting was on the genomics of renewable energy strategies, carbon cycling, environmental gene discovery, and engineering of fuel-producing organisms. The meeting features presentations by leading scientists advancing these topics. Mike Thomashow of Michigan State University gives a presentation on on "Low Temperature Regulatory Networks Controlling Cold Acclimation in Arabidopsis" at the 6th annual Genomics of Energy & Environment Meeting on March 23, 2011. «

  12. Complex Dynamic Behavior in Simple Gene Regulatory Networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Santillán Zerón, Moisés

    2007-02-01

    Knowing the complete genome of a given species is just a piece of the puzzle. To fully unveil the systems behavior of an organism, an organ, or even a single cell, we need to understand the underlying gene regulatory dynamics. Given the complexity of the whole system, the ultimate goal is unattainable for the moment. But perhaps, by analyzing the most simple genetic systems, we may be able to develop the mathematical techniques and procedures required to tackle more complex genetic networks in the near future. In the present work, the techniques for developing mathematical models of simple bacterial gene networks, like the tryptophan and lactose operons are introduced. Despite all of the underlying assumptions, such models can provide valuable information regarding gene regulation dynamics. Here, we pay special attention to robustness as an emergent property. These notes are organized as follows. In the first section, the long historical relation between mathematics, physics, and biology is briefly reviewed. Recently, the multidisciplinary work in biology has received great attention in the form of systems biology. The main concepts of this novel science are discussed in the second section. A very slim introduction to the essential concepts of molecular biology is given in the third section. In the fourth section, a brief introduction to chemical kinetics is presented. Finally, in the fifth section, a mathematical model for the lactose operon is developed and analyzed..

  13. Comprehensive Mapping of the Escherichia coli Flagellar Regulatory Network

    PubMed Central

    Fitzgerald, Devon M.; Bonocora, Richard P.; Wade, Joseph T.

    2014-01-01

    Flagellar synthesis is a highly regulated process in all motile bacteria. In Escherichia coli and related species, the transcription factor FlhDC is the master regulator of a multi-tiered transcription network. FlhDC activates transcription of a number of genes, including some flagellar genes and the gene encoding the alternative Sigma factor FliA. Genes whose expression is required late in flagellar assembly are primarily transcribed by FliA, imparting temporal regulation of transcription and coupling expression to flagellar assembly. In this study, we use ChIP-seq and RNA-seq to comprehensively map the E. coli FlhDC and FliA regulons. We define a surprisingly restricted FlhDC regulon, including two novel regulated targets and two binding sites not associated with detectable regulation of surrounding genes. In contrast, we greatly expand the known FliA regulon. Surprisingly, 30 of the 52 FliA binding sites are located inside genes. Two of these intragenic promoters are associated with detectable noncoding RNAs, while the others either produce highly unstable RNAs or are inactive under these conditions. Together, our data redefine the E. coli flagellar regulatory network, and provide new insight into the temporal orchestration of gene expression that coordinates the flagellar assembly process. PMID:25275371

  14. Integrating Transcriptomic and Proteomic Data Using Predictive Regulatory Network Models of Host Response to Pathogens.

    PubMed

    Chasman, Deborah; Walters, Kevin B; Lopes, Tiago J S; Eisfeld, Amie J; Kawaoka, Yoshihiro; Roy, Sushmita

    2016-07-01

    Mammalian host response to pathogenic infections is controlled by a complex regulatory network connecting regulatory proteins such as transcription factors and signaling proteins to target genes. An important challenge in infectious disease research is to understand molecular similarities and differences in mammalian host response to diverse sets of pathogens. Recently, systems biology studies have produced rich collections of omic profiles measuring host response to infectious agents such as influenza viruses at multiple levels. To gain a comprehensive understanding of the regulatory network driving host response to multiple infectious agents, we integrated host transcriptomes and proteomes using a network-based approach. Our approach combines expression-based regulatory network inference, structured-sparsity based regression, and network information flow to infer putative physical regulatory programs for expression modules. We applied our approach to identify regulatory networks, modules and subnetworks that drive host response to multiple influenza infections. The inferred regulatory network and modules are significantly enriched for known pathways of immune response and implicate apoptosis, splicing, and interferon signaling processes in the differential response of viral infections of different pathogenicities. We used the learned network to prioritize regulators and study virus and time-point specific networks. RNAi-based knockdown of predicted regulators had significant impact on viral replication and include several previously unknown regulators. Taken together, our integrated analysis identified novel module level patterns that capture strain and pathogenicity-specific patterns of expression and helped identify important regulators of host response to influenza infection.

  15. Integrating Transcriptomic and Proteomic Data Using Predictive Regulatory Network Models of Host Response to Pathogens

    PubMed Central

    Chasman, Deborah; Walters, Kevin B.; Lopes, Tiago J. S.; Eisfeld, Amie J.; Kawaoka, Yoshihiro; Roy, Sushmita

    2016-01-01

    Mammalian host response to pathogenic infections is controlled by a complex regulatory network connecting regulatory proteins such as transcription factors and signaling proteins to target genes. An important challenge in infectious disease research is to understand molecular similarities and differences in mammalian host response to diverse sets of pathogens. Recently, systems biology studies have produced rich collections of omic profiles measuring host response to infectious agents such as influenza viruses at multiple levels. To gain a comprehensive understanding of the regulatory network driving host response to multiple infectious agents, we integrated host transcriptomes and proteomes using a network-based approach. Our approach combines expression-based regulatory network inference, structured-sparsity based regression, and network information flow to infer putative physical regulatory programs for expression modules. We applied our approach to identify regulatory networks, modules and subnetworks that drive host response to multiple influenza infections. The inferred regulatory network and modules are significantly enriched for known pathways of immune response and implicate apoptosis, splicing, and interferon signaling processes in the differential response of viral infections of different pathogenicities. We used the learned network to prioritize regulators and study virus and time-point specific networks. RNAi-based knockdown of predicted regulators had significant impact on viral replication and include several previously unknown regulators. Taken together, our integrated analysis identified novel module level patterns that capture strain and pathogenicity-specific patterns of expression and helped identify important regulators of host response to influenza infection. PMID:27403523

  16. Porphyrin and heme metabolism and the porphyrias.

    PubMed

    Bonkovsky, Herbert L; Guo, Jun-Tao; Hou, Weihong; Li, Ting; Narang, Tarun; Thapar, Manish

    2013-01-01

    Porphyrins and metalloporphyrins are the key pigments of life on earth as we know it, because they include chlorophyll (a magnesium-containing metalloporphyrin) and heme (iron protoporphyrin). In eukaryotes, porphyrins and heme are synthesized by a multistep pathway that involves eight enzymes. The first and rate-controlling step is the formation of delta-aminolevulinic acid (ALA) from glycine plus succinyl CoA, catalyzed by ALA synthase. Intermediate steps occur in the cytoplasm, with formation of the monopyrrole porphobilinogen and the tetrapyrroles hydroxymethylbilane and a series of porphyrinogens, which are serially decarboxylated. Heme is utilized chiefly for the formation of hemoglobin in erythrocytes, myoglobin in muscle cells, cytochromes P-450 and mitochondrial cytochromes, and other hemoproteins in hepatocytes. The rate-controlling step of heme breakdown is catalyzed by heme oxygenase (HMOX), of which there are two isoforms, called HMOX1 and HMOX2. HMOX breaks down heme to form biliverdin, carbon monoxide, and iron. The porphyrias are a group of disorders, mainly inherited, in which there are defects in normal porphyrin and heme synthesis. The cardinal clinical features are cutaneous (due to the skin-damaging effects of excess deposited porphyrins) or neurovisceral attacks of pain, sometimes with weakness, delirium, seizures, and the like (probably due mainly to neurotoxic effects of ALA). The treatment of choice for the acute hepatic porphyrias is intravenous heme therapy, which repletes a critical regulatory heme pool in hepatocytes and leads to downregulation of hepatic ALA synthase, which is a biochemical hallmark of all forms of acute porphyria in relapse.

  17. Stochastic models and numerical algorithms for a class of regulatory gene networks.

    PubMed

    Fournier, Thomas; Gabriel, Jean-Pierre; Pasquier, Jerôme; Mazza, Christian; Galbete, José; Mermod, Nicolas

    2009-08-01

    Regulatory gene networks contain generic modules, like those involving feedback loops, which are essential for the regulation of many biological functions (Guido et al. in Nature 439:856-860, 2006). We consider a class of self-regulated genes which are the building blocks of many regulatory gene networks, and study the steady-state distribution of the associated Gillespie algorithm by providing efficient numerical algorithms. We also study a regulatory gene network of interest in gene therapy, using mean-field models with time delays. Convergence of the related time-nonhomogeneous Markov chain is established for a class of linear catalytic networks with feedback loops.

  18. Bacterial regulatory networks are extremely flexible in evolution

    PubMed Central

    Lozada-Chávez, Irma; Janga, Sarath Chandra; Collado-Vides, Julio

    2006-01-01

    Over millions of years the structure and complexity of the transcriptional regulatory network (TRN) in bacteria has changed, reorganized and enabled them to adapt to almost every environmental niche on earth. In order to understand the plasticity of TRNs in bacteria, we studied the conservation of currently known TRNs of the two model organisms Escherichia coli K12 and Bacillus subtilis across complete genomes including Bacteria, Archaea and Eukarya at three different levels: individual components of the TRN, pairs of interactions and regulons. We found that transcription factors (TFs) evolve much faster than the target genes (TGs) across phyla. We show that global regulators are poorly conserved across the phylogenetic spectrum and hence TFs could be the major players responsible for the plasticity and evolvability of the TRNs. We also found that there is only a small fraction of significantly conserved transcriptional regulatory interactions among different phyla of bacteria and that there is no constraint on the elements of the interaction to co-evolve. Finally our results suggest that majority of the regulons in bacteria are rapidly lost implying a high-order flexibility in the TRNs. We hypothesize that during the divergence of bacteria certain essential cellular processes like the synthesis of arginine, biotine and ribose, transport of amino acids and iron, availability of phosphate, replication process and the SOS response are well conserved in evolution. From our comparative analysis, it is possible to infer that transcriptional regulation is more flexible than the genetic component of the organisms and its complexity and structure plays an important role in the phenotypic adaptation. PMID:16840530

  19. An efficient approach of attractor calculation for large-scale Boolean gene regulatory networks.

    PubMed

    He, Qinbin; Xia, Zhile; Lin, Bin

    2016-11-07

    Boolean network models provide an efficient way for studying gene regulatory networks. The main dynamics of a Boolean network is determined by its attractors. Attractor calculation plays a key role for analyzing Boolean gene regulatory networks. An approach of attractor calculation was proposed in this study, which improved the predecessor-based approach. Furthermore, the proposed approach combined with the identification of constant nodes and simplified Boolean networks to accelerate attractor calculation. The proposed algorithm is effective to calculate all attractors for large-scale Boolean gene regulatory networks. If the average degree of the network is not too large, the algorithm can get all attractors of a Boolean network with dozens or even hundreds of nodes.

  20. Evolution of Intra-specific Regulatory Networks in a Multipartite Bacterial Genome.

    PubMed

    Galardini, Marco; Brilli, Matteo; Spini, Giulia; Rossi, Matteo; Roncaglia, Bianca; Bani, Alessia; Chiancianesi, Manuela; Moretto, Marco; Engelen, Kristof; Bacci, Giovanni; Pini, Francesco; Biondi, Emanuele G; Bazzicalupo, Marco; Mengoni, Alessio

    2015-09-01

    Reconstruction of the regulatory network is an important step in understanding how organisms control the expression of gene products and therefore phenotypes. Recent studies have pointed out the importance of regulatory network plasticity in bacterial adaptation and evolution. The evolution of such networks within and outside the species boundary is however still obscure. Sinorhizobium meliloti is an ideal species for such study, having three large replicons, many genomes available and a significant knowledge of its transcription factors (TF). Each replicon has a specific functional and evolutionary mark; which might also emerge from the analysis of their regulatory signatures. Here we have studied the plasticity of the regulatory network within and outside the S. meliloti species, looking for the presence of 41 TFs binding motifs in 51 strains and 5 related rhizobial species. We have detected a preference of several TFs for one of the three replicons, and the function of regulated genes was found to be in accordance with the overall replicon functional signature: house-keeping functions for the chromosome, metabolism for the chromid, symbiosis for the megaplasmid. This therefore suggests a replicon-specific wiring of the regulatory network in the S. meliloti species. At the same time a significant part of the predicted regulatory network is shared between the chromosome and the chromid, thus adding an additional layer by which the chromid integrates itself in the core genome. Furthermore, the regulatory network distance was found to be correlated with both promoter regions and accessory genome evolution inside the species, indicating that both pangenome compartments are involved in the regulatory network evolution. We also observed that genes which are not included in the species regulatory network are more likely to belong to the accessory genome, indicating that regulatory interactions should also be considered to predict gene conservation in bacterial

  1. Hepatic Gene Expression in Protoporphyic Fech Mice Is Associated with Cholestatic Injury but Not a Marked Depletion of the Heme Regulatory Pool

    PubMed Central

    Davies, Reginald; Schuurman, Arenda; Barker, Colin R.; Clothier, Bruce; Chernova, Tatyana; Higginson, Fiona M.; Judah, David J.; Dinsdale, David; Edwards, Richard E.; Greaves, Peter; Gant, Timothy W.; Smith, Andrew G.

    2005-01-01

    BALB/c Fechm1Pas mice have a mutated ferrochelatase gene resulting in protoporphyria that models the hepatic injury occurring sporadically in human erythropoietic protoporphyria. We used this mouse model to study the development of the injury and to compare the dysfunction of heme synthesis with hepatic gene expression of liver metabolism, oxidative stress, and cellular injury/inflammation. From an early age expression of total cytochrome P450 and many of its isoforms was significantly lower than in wild-type mice. However, despite massive accumulation of protoporphyrin in the liver, expression of the main genes controlling heme synthesis and catabolism (Alas1 and Hmox1, respectively) were only modestly affected even in the presence of the cytochrome P450-inducing CAR agonist 1,4-bis[2-(3,5-dichloropyridyloxy)]benzene. In contrast, in BALB/c mice exhibiting griseofulvin-induced hepatic protoporphyria with induction and destruction of cytochrome P450, both Alas1 and Hmox1 genes were markedly up-regulated. Other expression profiles in BALB/c Fechm1Pas mice identified roles for oxidative mechanisms in liver injury while modulated gene expression of hepatocyte transport proteins and cholesterol and bile acid synthesis illustrated the development of cholestasis. Subsequent inflammation and cirrhosis were also shown by the up-regulation of cytokine, cell cycling, and procollagen genes. Thus, gene expression profiles studied in Fechm1Pas mice may provide candidates for human polymorphisms that explain the sporadic hepatic consequences of erythropoietic protoporphyria. PMID:15793285

  2. Recurrent neural network based hybrid model for reconstructing gene regulatory network.

    PubMed

    Raza, Khalid; Alam, Mansaf

    2016-10-01

    One of the exciting problems in systems biology research is to decipher how genome controls the development of complex biological system. The gene regulatory networks (GRNs) help in the identification of regulatory interactions between genes and offer fruitful information related to functional role of individual gene in a cellular system. Discovering GRNs lead to a wide range of applications, including identification of disease related pathways providing novel tentative drug targets, helps to predict disease response, and also assists in diagnosing various diseases including cancer. Reconstruction of GRNs from available biological data is still an open problem. This paper proposes a recurrent neural network (RNN) based model of GRN, hybridized with generalized extended Kalman filter for weight update in backpropagation through time training algorithm. The RNN is a complex neural network that gives a better settlement between biological closeness and mathematical flexibility to model GRN; and is also able to capture complex, non-linear and dynamic relationships among variables. Gene expression data are inherently noisy and Kalman filter performs well for estimation problem even in noisy data. Hence, we applied non-linear version of Kalman filter, known as generalized extended Kalman filter, for weight update during RNN training. The developed model has been tested on four benchmark networks such as DNA SOS repair network, IRMA network, and two synthetic networks from DREAM Challenge. We performed a comparison of our results with other state-of-the-art techniques which shows superiority of our proposed model. Further, 5% Gaussian noise has been induced in the dataset and result of the proposed model shows negligible effect of noise on results, demonstrating the noise tolerance capability of the model.

  3. Dose response relationship in anti-stress gene regulatory networks.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Qiang; Andersen, Melvin E

    2007-03-02

    To maintain a stable intracellular environment, cells utilize complex and specialized defense systems against a variety of external perturbations, such as electrophilic stress, heat shock, and hypoxia, etc. Irrespective of the type of stress, many adaptive mechanisms contributing to cellular homeostasis appear to operate through gene regulatory networks that are organized into negative feedback loops. In general, the degree of deviation of the controlled variables, such as electrophiles, misfolded proteins, and O2, is first detected by specialized sensor molecules, then the signal is transduced to specific transcription factors. Transcription factors can regulate the expression of a suite of anti-stress genes, many of which encode enzymes functioning to counteract the perturbed variables. The objective of this study was to explore, using control theory and computational approaches, the theoretical basis that underlies the steady-state dose response relationship between cellular stressors and intracellular biochemical species (controlled variables, transcription factors, and gene products) in these gene regulatory networks. Our work indicated that the shape of dose response curves (linear, superlinear, or sublinear) depends on changes in the specific values of local response coefficients (gains) distributed in the feedback loop. Multimerization of anti-stress enzymes and transcription factors into homodimers, homotrimers, or even higher-order multimers, play a significant role in maintaining robust homeostasis. Moreover, our simulation noted that dose response curves for the controlled variables can transition sequentially through four distinct phases as stressor level increases: initial superlinear with lesser control, superlinear more highly controlled, linear uncontrolled, and sublinear catastrophic. Each phase relies on specific gain-changing events that come into play as stressor level increases. The low-dose region is intrinsically nonlinear, and depending on

  4. Crystal structure of dimeric heme oxygenase-2 from Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 in complex with heme.

    PubMed

    Sugishima, Masakazu; Hagiwara, Yoshinori; Zhang, Xuhong; Yoshida, Tadashi; Migita, Catharina T; Fukuyama, Keiichi

    2005-03-22

    Phycobiliproteins, light-harvesting proteins in cyanobacteria, red algae, and cryptophytes, contain phycobilin pigments. Phycobilins are synthesized from biliverdin, which is produced by the oxidative cleavage of the heme porphyrin ring catalyzed by heme oxygenase (HO). Two paralogs of ho (ho1 and ho2) have been identified in the genome of the cyanobacterium, Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803. The recombinant proteins of both paralogs (Syn HO-1 and Syn HO-2) possess in vitro heme degradation activity. We have determined the crystal structures of Syn HO-2 in complex with heme (heme-Syn HO-2) and its reduced and NO bound forms. The heme-Syn HO-2 crystal was a nonmerohedral twin, and detwinned diffraction data were used to refine the structure. Although heme-Syn HO-2 shares common folding with other HOs, the C-terminal segment is ordered and turns back to the heme-binding side. Gel-filtration chromatography analysis and molecular packing in the crystal indicate that heme-Syn HO-2 forms a homodimer, in which the C-terminal ordered segments interact with each other. Because Syn HO-2 is a monomer in the apo state, the dimeric interaction may aid in the selection of the reducing partner but likely does not interfere with heme binding. The heme iron is coordinated by a water molecule in the ferric form, but the distal water is absent in the ferrous form. In all of the Syn HO-2 structures, several water molecules form a hydrogen-bond network at the distal hemepocket, which is involved in HO activity. Upon NO binding, the side-chain conformation of Tyr 156 changes. Tyr 156 is located at the hydrophobic cluster, which interrupts the possible H(+) pathway from the molecular surface to the hemepocket. Thus, Tyr 156 may function as a H(+) shuttle by changing conformation.

  5. Stochastic Boolean networks: An efficient approach to modeling gene regulatory networks

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Various computational models have been of interest due to their use in the modelling of gene regulatory networks (GRNs). As a logical model, probabilistic Boolean networks (PBNs) consider molecular and genetic noise, so the study of PBNs provides significant insights into the understanding of the dynamics of GRNs. This will ultimately lead to advances in developing therapeutic methods that intervene in the process of disease development and progression. The applications of PBNs, however, are hindered by the complexities involved in the computation of the state transition matrix and the steady-state distribution of a PBN. For a PBN with n genes and N Boolean networks, the complexity to compute the state transition matrix is O(nN22n) or O(nN2n) for a sparse matrix. Results This paper presents a novel implementation of PBNs based on the notions of stochastic logic and stochastic computation. This stochastic implementation of a PBN is referred to as a stochastic Boolean network (SBN). An SBN provides an accurate and efficient simulation of a PBN without and with random gene perturbation. The state transition matrix is computed in an SBN with a complexity of O(nL2n), where L is a factor related to the stochastic sequence length. Since the minimum sequence length required for obtaining an evaluation accuracy approximately increases in a polynomial order with the number of genes, n, and the number of Boolean networks, N, usually increases exponentially with n, L is typically smaller than N, especially in a network with a large number of genes. Hence, the computational efficiency of an SBN is primarily limited by the number of genes, but not directly by the total possible number of Boolean networks. Furthermore, a time-frame expanded SBN enables an efficient analysis of the steady-state distribution of a PBN. These findings are supported by the simulation results of a simplified p53 network, several randomly generated networks and a network inferred from a T

  6. In silico Transcriptional Regulatory Networks Involved in Tomato Fruit Ripening

    PubMed Central

    Arhondakis, Stilianos; Bita, Craita E.; Perrakis, Andreas; Manioudaki, Maria E.; Krokida, Afroditi; Kaloudas, Dimitrios; Kalaitzis, Panagiotis

    2016-01-01

    Tomato fruit ripening is a complex developmental programme partly mediated by transcriptional regulatory networks. Several transcription factors (TFs) which are members of gene families such as MADS-box and ERF were shown to play a significant role in ripening through interconnections into an intricate network. The accumulation of large datasets of expression profiles corresponding to different stages of tomato fruit ripening and the availability of bioinformatics tools for their analysis provide an opportunity to identify TFs which might regulate gene clusters with similar co-expression patterns. We identified two TFs, a SlWRKY22-like and a SlER24 transcriptional activator which were shown to regulate modules by using the LeMoNe algorithm for the analysis of our microarray datasets representing four stages of fruit ripening, breaker, turning, pink and red ripe. The WRKY22-like module comprised a subgroup of six various calcium sensing transcripts with similar to the TF expression patterns according to real time PCR validation. A promoter motif search identified a cis acting element, the W-box, recognized by WRKY TFs that was present in the promoter region of all six calcium sensing genes. Moreover, publicly available microarray datasets of similar ripening stages were also analyzed with LeMoNe resulting in TFs such as SlERF.E1, SlERF.C1, SlERF.B2, SLERF.A2, SlWRKY24, SLWRKY37, and MADS-box/TM29 which might also play an important role in regulation of ripening. These results suggest that the SlWRKY22-like might be involved in the coordinated regulation of expression of the six calcium sensing genes. Conclusively the LeMoNe tool might lead to the identification of putative TF targets for further physiological analysis as regulators of tomato fruit ripening. PMID:27625653

  7. A provisional regulatory gene network for specification of endomesoderm in the sea urchin embryo

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Davidson, Eric H.; Rast, Jonathan P.; Oliveri, Paola; Ransick, Andrew; Calestani, Cristina; Yuh, Chiou-Hwa; Minokawa, Takuya; Amore, Gabriele; Hinman, Veronica; Arenas-Mena, Cesar; Otim, Ochan; Brown, C. Titus; Livi, Carolina B.; Lee, Pei Yun; Revilla, Roger; Schilstra, Maria J.; Clarke, Peter J C.; Rust, Alistair G.; Pan, Zhengjun; Arnone, Maria I.; Rowen, Lee; Cameron, R. Andrew; McClay, David R.; Hood, Leroy; Bolouri, Hamid

    2002-01-01

    We present the current form of a provisional DNA sequence-based regulatory gene network that explains in outline how endomesodermal specification in the sea urchin embryo is controlled. The model of the network is in a continuous process of revision and growth as new genes are added and new experimental results become available; see http://www.its.caltech.edu/mirsky/endomeso.htm (End-mes Gene Network Update) for the latest version. The network contains over 40 genes at present, many newly uncovered in the course of this work, and most encoding DNA-binding transcriptional regulatory factors. The architecture of the network was approached initially by construction of a logic model that integrated the extensive experimental evidence now available on endomesoderm specification. The internal linkages between genes in the network have been determined functionally, by measurement of the effects of regulatory perturbations on the expression of all relevant genes in the network. Five kinds of perturbation have been applied: (1) use of morpholino antisense oligonucleotides targeted to many of the key regulatory genes in the network; (2) transformation of other regulatory factors into dominant repressors by construction of Engrailed repressor domain fusions; (3) ectopic expression of given regulatory factors, from genetic expression constructs and from injected mRNAs; (4) blockade of the beta-catenin/Tcf pathway by introduction of mRNA encoding the intracellular domain of cadherin; and (5) blockade of the Notch signaling pathway by introduction of mRNA encoding the extracellular domain of the Notch receptor. The network model predicts the cis-regulatory inputs that link each gene into the network. Therefore, its architecture is testable by cis-regulatory analysis. Strongylocentrotus purpuratus and Lytechinus variegatus genomic BAC recombinants that include a large number of the genes in the network have been sequenced and annotated. Tests of the cis-regulatory predictions of

  8. An Arabidopsis gene regulatory network for secondary cell wall synthesis

    DOE PAGES

    Taylor-Teeples, M.; Lin, L.; de Lucas, M.; ...

    2014-12-24

    The plant cell wall is an important factor for determining cell shape, function and response to the environment. Secondary cell walls, such as those found in xylem, are composed of cellulose, hemicelluloses and lignin and account for the bulk of plant biomass. The coordination between transcriptional regulation of synthesis for each polymer is complex and vital to cell function. A regulatory hierarchy of developmental switches has been proposed, although the full complement of regulators remains unknown. In this paper, we present a protein–DNA network between Arabidopsis thaliana transcription factors and secondary cell wall metabolic genes with gene expression regulated bymore » a series of feed-forward loops. This model allowed us to develop and validate new hypotheses about secondary wall gene regulation under abiotic stress. Distinct stresses are able to perturb targeted genes to potentially promote functional adaptation. Finally, these interactions will serve as a foundation for understanding the regulation of a complex, integral plant component.« less

  9. Identification of a gene regulatory network associated with prion replication

    PubMed Central

    Marbiah, Masue M; Harvey, Anna; West, Billy T; Louzolo, Anais; Banerjee, Priya; Alden, Jack; Grigoriadis, Anita; Hummerich, Holger; Kan, Ho-Man; Cai, Ying; Bloom, George S; Jat, Parmjit; Collinge, John; Klöhn, Peter-Christian

    2014-01-01

    Prions consist of aggregates of abnormal conformers of the cellular prion protein (PrPC). They propagate by recruiting host-encoded PrPC although the critical interacting proteins and the reasons for the differences in susceptibility of distinct cell lines and populations are unknown. We derived a lineage of cell lines with markedly differing susceptibilities, unexplained by PrPC expression differences, to identify such factors. Transcriptome analysis of prion-resistant revertants, isolated from highly susceptible cells, revealed a gene expression signature associated with susceptibility and modulated by differentiation. Several of these genes encode proteins with a role in extracellular matrix (ECM) remodelling, a compartment in which disease-related PrP is deposited. Silencing nine of these genes significantly increased susceptibility. Silencing of Papss2 led to undersulphated heparan sulphate and increased PrPC deposition at the ECM, concomitantly with increased prion propagation. Moreover, inhibition of fibronectin 1 binding to integrin α8 by RGD peptide inhibited metalloproteinases (MMP)-2/9 whilst increasing prion propagation. In summary, we have identified a gene regulatory network associated with prion propagation at the ECM and governed by the cellular differentiation state. PMID:24843046

  10. Impact of Transcription Units rearrangement on the evolution of the regulatory network of gamma-proteobacteria

    PubMed Central

    González Pérez, Abel D; González González, Evelyn; Espinosa Angarica, Vladimir; Vasconcelos, Ana Tereza R; Collado-Vides, Julio

    2008-01-01

    Background In the past years, several studies begun to unravel the structure, dynamical properties, and evolution of transcriptional regulatory networks. However, even those comparative studies that focus on a group of closely related organisms are limited by the rather scarce knowledge on regulatory interactions outside a few model organisms, such as E. coli among the prokaryotes. Results In this paper we used the information annotated in Tractor_DB (a database of regulatory networks in gamma-proteobacteria) to calculate a normalized Site Orthology Score (SOS) that quantifies the conservation of a regulatory link across thirty genomes of this subclass. Then we used this SOS to assess how regulatory connections have evolved in this group, and how the variation of basic regulatory connection is reflected on the structure of the chromosome. We found that individual regulatory interactions shift between different organisms, a process that may be described as rewiring the network. At this evolutionary scale (the gamma-proteobacteria subclass) this rewiring process may be an important source of variation of regulatory incoming interactions for individual networks. We also noticed that the regulatory links that form feed forward motifs are conserved in a better correlated manner than triads of random regulatory interactions or pairs of co-regulated genes. Furthermore, the rewiring process that takes place at the most basic level of the regulatory network may be linked to rearrangements of genetic material within bacterial chromosomes, which change the structure of Transcription Units and therefore the regulatory connections between Transcription Factors and structural genes. Conclusion The rearrangements that occur in bacterial chromosomes-mostly inversion or horizontal gene transfer events – are important sources of variation of gene regulation at this evolutionary scale. PMID:18366643

  11. Optimal Control of Gene Regulatory Networks with Effectiveness of Multiple Drugs: A Boolean Network Approach

    PubMed Central

    Kobayashi, Koichi; Hiraishi, Kunihiko

    2013-01-01

    Developing control theory of gene regulatory networks is one of the significant topics in the field of systems biology, and it is expected to apply the obtained results to gene therapy technologies in the future. In this paper, a control method using a Boolean network (BN) is studied. A BN is widely used as a model of gene regulatory networks, and gene expression is expressed by a binary value (0 or 1). In the control problem, we assume that the concentration level of a part of genes is arbitrarily determined as the control input. However, there are cases that no gene satisfying this assumption exists, and it is important to consider structural control via external stimuli. Furthermore, these controls are realized by multiple drugs, and it is also important to consider multiple effects such as duration of effect and side effects. In this paper, we propose a BN model with two types of the control inputs and an optimal control method with duration of drug effectiveness. First, a BN model and duration of drug effectiveness are discussed. Next, the optimal control problem is formulated and is reduced to an integer linear programming problem. Finally, numerical simulations are shown. PMID:24058904

  12. Regulatory Network Structure as a Dominant Determinant of Transcription Factor Evolutionary Rate

    PubMed Central

    Coulombe-Huntington, Jasmin; Xia, Yu

    2012-01-01

    The evolution of transcriptional regulatory networks has thus far mostly been studied at the level of cis-regulatory elements. To gain a complete understanding of regulatory network evolution we must also study the evolutionary role of trans-factors, such as transcription factors (TFs). Here, we systematically assess genomic and network-level determinants of TF evolutionary rate in yeast, and how they compare to those of generic proteins, while carefully controlling for differences of the TF protein set, such as expression level. We found significantly distinct trends relating TF evolutionary rate to mRNA expression level, codon adaptation index, the evolutionary rate of physical interaction partners, and, confirming previous reports, to protein-protein interaction degree and regulatory in-degree. We discovered that for TFs, the dominant determinants of evolutionary rate lie in the structure of the regulatory network, such as the median evolutionary rate of target genes and the fraction of species-specific target genes. Decomposing the regulatory network by edge sign, we found that this modular evolution of TFs and their targets is limited to activating regulatory relationships. We show that fast evolving TFs tend to regulate other TFs and niche-specific processes and that their targets show larger evolutionary expression changes than targets of other TFs. We also show that the positive trend relating TF regulatory in-degree and evolutionary rate is likely related to the species-specificity of the transcriptional regulation modules. Finally, we discuss likely causes for TFs' different evolutionary relationship to the physical interaction network, such as the prevalence of transient interactions in the TF subnetwork. This work suggests that positive and negative regulatory networks follow very different evolutionary rules, and that transcription factor evolution is best understood at a network- or systems-level. PMID:23093926

  13. Data- and knowledge-based modeling of gene regulatory networks: an update

    PubMed Central

    Linde, Jörg; Schulze, Sylvie; Henkel, Sebastian G.; Guthke, Reinhard

    2015-01-01

    Gene regulatory network inference is a systems biology approach which predicts interactions between genes with the help of high-throughput data. In this review, we present current and updated network inference methods focusing on novel techniques for data acquisition, network inference assessment, network inference for interacting species and the integration of prior knowledge. After the advance of Next-Generation-Sequencing of cDNAs derived from RNA samples (RNA-Seq) we discuss in detail its application to network inference. Furthermore, we present progress for large-scale or even full-genomic network inference as well as for small-scale condensed network inference and review advances in the evaluation of network inference methods by crowdsourcing. Finally, we reflect the current availability of data and prior knowledge sources and give an outlook for the inference of gene regulatory networks that reflect interacting species, in particular pathogen-host interactions. PMID:27047314

  14. Network component analysis provides quantitative insights on an Arabidopsis transcription factor-gene regulatory network

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Gene regulatory networks (GRNs) are models of molecule-gene interactions instrumental in the coordination of gene expression. Transcription factor (TF)-GRNs are an important subset of GRNs that characterize gene expression as the effect of TFs acting on their target genes. Although such networks can qualitatively summarize TF-gene interactions, it is highly desirable to quantitatively determine the strengths of the interactions in a TF-GRN as well as the magnitudes of TF activities. To our knowledge, such analysis is rare in plant biology. A computational methodology developed for this purpose is network component analysis (NCA), which has been used for studying large-scale microbial TF-GRNs to obtain nontrivial, mechanistic insights. In this work, we employed NCA to quantitatively analyze a plant TF-GRN important in floral development using available regulatory information from AGRIS, by processing previously reported gene expression data from four shoot apical meristem cell types. Results The NCA model satisfactorily accounted for gene expression measurements in a TF-GRN of seven TFs (LFY, AG, SEPALLATA3 [SEP3], AP2, AGL15, HY5 and AP3/PI) and 55 genes. NCA found strong interactions between certain TF-gene pairs including LFY → MYB17, AG → CRC, AP2 → RD20, AGL15 → RAV2 and HY5 → HLH1, and the direction of the interaction (activation or repression) for some AGL15 targets for which this information was not previously available. The activity trends of four TFs - LFY, AG, HY5 and AP3/PI as deduced by NCA correlated well with the changes in expression levels of the genes encoding these TFs across all four cell types; such a correlation was not observed for SEP3, AP2 and AGL15. Conclusions For the first time, we have reported the use of NCA to quantitatively analyze a plant TF-GRN important in floral development for obtaining nontrivial information about connectivity strengths between TFs and their target genes as well as TF

  15. Construction of Gene Regulatory Networks Using Recurrent Neural Networks and Swarm Intelligence

    PubMed Central

    Khan, Abhinandan; Mandal, Sudip; Pal, Rajat Kumar; Saha, Goutam

    2016-01-01

    We have proposed a methodology for the reverse engineering of biologically plausible gene regulatory networks from temporal genetic expression data. We have used established information and the fundamental mathematical theory for this purpose. We have employed the Recurrent Neural Network formalism to extract the underlying dynamics present in the time series expression data accurately. We have introduced a new hybrid swarm intelligence framework for the accurate training of the model parameters. The proposed methodology has been first applied to a small artificial network, and the results obtained suggest that it can produce the best results available in the contemporary literature, to the best of our knowledge. Subsequently, we have implemented our proposed framework on experimental (in vivo) datasets. Finally, we have investigated two medium sized genetic networks (in silico) extracted from GeneNetWeaver, to understand how the proposed algorithm scales up with network size. Additionally, we have implemented our proposed algorithm with half the number of time points. The results indicate that a reduction of 50% in the number of time points does not have an effect on the accuracy of the proposed methodology significantly, with a maximum of just over 15% deterioration in the worst case. PMID:27298752

  16. Mining Gene Regulatory Networks by Neural Modeling of Expression Time-Series.

    PubMed

    Rubiolo, Mariano; Milone, Diego H; Stegmayer, Georgina

    2015-01-01

    Discovering gene regulatory networks from data is one of the most studied topics in recent years. Neural networks can be successfully used to infer an underlying gene network by modeling expression profiles as times series. This work proposes a novel method based on a pool of neural networks for obtaining a gene regulatory network from a gene expression dataset. They are used for modeling each possible interaction between pairs of genes in the dataset, and a set of mining rules is applied to accurately detect the subjacent relations among genes. The results obtained on artificial and real datasets confirm the method effectiveness for discovering regulatory networks from a proper modeling of the temporal dynamics of gene expression profiles.

  17. The contribution of transposable elements to the evolution of regulatory networks

    PubMed Central

    Feschotte, Cédric

    2008-01-01

    Preface The control and coordination of eukaryotic gene expression rely on transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulatory networks. Although progress has been made in mapping the components and deciphering the function of these networks, the mechanisms by which such intricate circuits originate and evolve remain poorly understood. Here I revisit and expand earlier models proposing that genomic repeats, and in particular transposable elements, have been a rich source of material for the assembly and tinkering of eukaryotic gene regulatory systems. PMID:18368054

  18. A guide to integrating transcriptional regulatory and metabolic networks using PROM (probabilistic regulation of metabolism).

    PubMed

    Simeonidis, Evangelos; Chandrasekaran, Sriram; Price, Nathan D

    2013-01-01

    The integration of transcriptional regulatory and metabolic networks is a crucial step in the process of predicting metabolic behaviors that emerge from either genetic or environmental changes. Here, we present a guide to PROM (probabilistic regulation of metabolism), an automated method for the construction and simulation of integrated metabolic and transcriptional regulatory networks that enables large-scale phenotypic predictions for a wide range of model organisms.

  19. Harnessing diversity towards the reconstructing of large scale gene regulatory networks.

    PubMed

    Hase, Takeshi; Ghosh, Samik; Yamanaka, Ryota; Kitano, Hiroaki

    2013-01-01

    Elucidating gene regulatory network (GRN) from large scale experimental data remains a central challenge in systems biology. Recently, numerous techniques, particularly consensus driven approaches combining different algorithms, have become a potentially promising strategy to infer accurate GRNs. Here, we develop a novel consensus inference algorithm, TopkNet that can integrate multiple algorithms to infer GRNs. Comprehensive performance benchmarking on a cloud computing framework demonstrated that (i) a simple strategy to combine many algorithms does not always lead to performance improvement compared to the cost of consensus and (ii) TopkNet integrating only high-performance algorithms provide significant performance improvement compared to the best individual algorithms and community prediction. These results suggest that a priori determination of high-performance algorithms is a key to reconstruct an unknown regulatory network. Similarity among gene-expression datasets can be useful to determine potential optimal algorithms for reconstruction of unknown regulatory networks, i.e., if expression-data associated with known regulatory network is similar to that with unknown regulatory network, optimal algorithms determined for the known regulatory network can be repurposed to infer the unknown regulatory network. Based on this observation, we developed a quantitative measure of similarity among gene-expression datasets and demonstrated that, if similarity between the two expression datasets is high, TopkNet integrating algorithms that are optimal for known dataset perform well on the unknown dataset. The consensus framework, TopkNet, together with the similarity measure proposed in this study provides a powerful strategy towards harnessing the wisdom of the crowds in reconstruction of unknown regulatory networks.

  20. Identifying miRNA synergistic regulatory networks in heterogeneous human data via network motifs.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Junpeng; Duy Le, Thuc; Liu, Lin; He, Jianfeng; Li, Jiuyong

    2016-02-01

    Understanding the synergism of multiple microRNAs (miRNAs) in gene regulation can provide important insights into the mechanisms of complex human diseases caused by miRNA regulation. Therefore, it is important to identify miRNA synergism and study miRNA characteristics in miRNA synergistic regulatory networks. A number of methods have been proposed to identify miRNA synergism. However, most of the methods only use downstream target genes of miRNAs to infer miRNA synergism when miRNAs can also be regulated by upstream transcription factors (TFs) at the transcriptional level. Additionally, most methods are based on statistical associations identified from data without considering the causal nature of gene regulation. In this paper, we present a causality based framework, called mirSRN (miRNA synergistic regulatory network), to infer miRNA synergism in human molecular systems by considering both downstream miRNA targets and upstream TF regulation. We apply the proposed framework to two real world datasets and discover that almost all the top 10 miRNAs with the largest node degree in the mirSRNs are associated with different human diseases, including cancer, and that the mirSRNs are approximately scale-free and small-world networks. We also find that most miRNAs in the networks are frequently synergistic with other miRNAs, and miRNAs related to the same disease are likely to be synergistic and in a cluster linked to a biological function. Synergistic miRNA pairs show higher co-expression level, and may have potential functional relationships indicating collaboration between the miRNAs. Functional validation of the identified synergistic miRNAs demonstrates that these miRNAs cause different kinds of diseases. These results deepen our understanding of the biological meaning of miRNA synergism.

  1. One hub-one process: a tool based view on regulatory network topology

    PubMed Central

    Axelsen, Jacob Bock; Bernhardsson, Sebastian; Sneppen, Kim

    2008-01-01

    Background The relationship between the regulatory design and the functionality of molecular networks is a key issue in biology. Modules and motifs have been associated to various cellular processes, thereby providing anecdotal evidence for performance based localization on molecular networks. Results To quantify structure-function relationship we investigate similarities of proteins which are close in the regulatory network of the yeast Saccharomyces Cerevisiae. We find that the topology of the regulatory network only show weak remnants of its history of network reorganizations, but strong features of co-regulated proteins associated to similar tasks. These functional correlations decreases strongly when one consider proteins separated by more than two steps in the regulatory network. The network topology primarily reflects the processes that is orchestrated by each individual hub, whereas there is nearly no remnants of the history of protein duplications. Conclusion Our results suggests that local topological features of regulatory networks, including broad degree distributions, emerge as an implicit result of matching a number of needed processes to a finite toolbox of proteins. PMID:18318890

  2. Steady-State Analysis of Genetic Regulatory Networks Modelled by Probabilistic Boolean Networks

    PubMed Central

    Gluhovsky, Ilya; Hashimoto, Ronaldo F.; Dougherty, Edward R.; Zhang, Wei

    2003-01-01

    Probabilistic Boolean networks (PBNs) have recently been introduced as a promising class of models of genetic regulatory networks. The dynamic behaviour of PBNs can be analysed in the context of Markov chains. A key goal is the determination of the steady-state (long-run) behaviour of a PBN by analysing the corresponding Markov chain. This allows one to compute the long-term influence of a gene on another gene or determine the long-term joint probabilistic behaviour of a few selected genes. Because matrix-based methods quickly become prohibitive for large sizes of networks, we propose the use of Monte Carlo methods. However, the rate of convergence to the stationary distribution becomes a central issue. We discuss several approaches for determining the number of iterations necessary to achieve convergence of the Markov chain corresponding to a PBN. Using a recently introduced method based on the theory of two-state Markov chains, we illustrate the approach on a sub-network designed from human glioma gene expression data and determine the joint steadystate probabilities for several groups of genes. PMID:18629023

  3. Drivers of structural features in gene regulatory networks: From biophysical constraints to biological function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, O. C.; Krzywicki, A.; Zagorski, M.

    2016-07-01

    Living cells can maintain their internal states, react to changing environments, grow, differentiate, divide, etc. All these processes are tightly controlled by what can be called a regulatory program. The logic of the underlying control can sometimes be guessed at by examining the network of influences amongst genetic components. Some associated gene regulatory networks have been studied in prokaryotes and eukaryotes, unveiling various structural features ranging from broad distributions of out-degrees to recurrent ;motifs;, that is small subgraphs having a specific pattern of interactions. To understand what factors may be driving such structuring, a number of groups have introduced frameworks to model the dynamics of gene regulatory networks. In that context, we review here such in silico approaches and show how selection for phenotypes, i.e., network function, can shape network structure.

  4. Reconstruction of the Regulatory Network for Bacillus subtilis and Reconciliation with Gene Expression Data.

    PubMed

    Faria, José P; Overbeek, Ross; Taylor, Ronald C; Conrad, Neal; Vonstein, Veronika; Goelzer, Anne; Fromion, Vincent; Rocha, Miguel; Rocha, Isabel; Henry, Christopher S

    2016-01-01

    We introduce a manually constructed and curated regulatory network model that describes the current state of knowledge of transcriptional regulation of Bacillus subtilis. The model corresponds to an updated and enlarged version of the regulatory model of central metabolism originally proposed in 2008. We extended the original network to the whole genome by integration of information from DBTBS, a compendium of regulatory data that includes promoters, transcription factors (TFs), binding sites, motifs, and regulated operons. Additionally, we consolidated our network with all the information on regulation included in the SporeWeb and Subtiwiki community-curated resources on B. subtilis. Finally, we reconciled our network with data from RegPrecise, which recently released their own less comprehensive reconstruction of the regulatory network for B. subtilis. Our model describes 275 regulators and their target genes, representing 30 different mechanisms of regulation such as TFs, RNA switches, Riboswitches, and small regulatory RNAs. Overall, regulatory information is included in the model for ∼2500 of the ∼4200 genes in B. subtilis 168. In an effort to further expand our knowledge of B. subtilis regulation, we reconciled our model with expression data. For this process, we reconstructed the Atomic Regulons (ARs) for B. subtilis, which are the sets of genes that share the same "ON" and "OFF" gene expression profiles across multiple samples of experimental data. We show how ARs for B. subtilis are able to capture many sets of genes corresponding to regulated operons in our manually curated network. Additionally, we demonstrate how ARs can be used to help expand or validate the knowledge of the regulatory networks by looking at highly correlated genes in the ARs for which regulatory information is lacking. During this process, we were also able to infer novel stimuli for hypothetical genes by exploring the genome expression metadata relating to experimental conditions

  5. Reconstruction of the regulatory network for Bacillus subtilis and reconciliation with gene expression data

    DOE PAGES

    Faria, Jose P.; Overbeek, Ross; Taylor, Ronald C.; ...

    2016-03-18

    Here, we introduce a manually constructed and curated regulatory network model that describes the current state of knowledge of transcriptional regulation of B. subtilis. The model corresponds to an updated and enlarged version of the regulatory model of central metabolism originally proposed in 2008. We extended the original network to the whole genome by integration of information from DBTBS, a compendium of regulatory data that includes promoters, transcription factors (TFs), binding sites, motifs and regulated operons. Additionally, we consolidated our network with all the information on regulation included in the SporeWeb and Subtiwiki community-curated resources on B. subtilis. Finally, wemore » reconciled our network with data from RegPrecise, which recently released their own less comprehensive reconstruction of the regulatory network for B. subtilis. Our model describes 275 regulators and their target genes, representing 30 different mechanisms of regulation such as TFs, RNA switches, Riboswitches and small regulatory RNAs. Overall, regulatory information is included in the model for approximately 2500 of the ~4200 genes in B. subtilis 168. In an effort to further expand our knowledge of B. subtilis regulation, we reconciled our model with expression data. For this process, we reconstructed the Atomic Regulons (ARs) for B. subtilis, which are the sets of genes that share the same “ON” and “OFF” gene expression profiles across multiple samples of experimental data. We show how atomic regulons for B. subtilis are able to capture many sets of genes corresponding to regulated operons in our manually curated network. Additionally, we demonstrate how atomic regulons can be used to help expand or validate the knowledge of the regulatory networks by looking at highly correlated genes in the ARs for which regulatory information is lacking. During this process, we were also able to infer novel stimuli for hypothetical genes by exploring the genome

  6. Reconstruction of the Regulatory Network for Bacillus subtilis and Reconciliation with Gene Expression Data

    PubMed Central

    Faria, José P.; Overbeek, Ross; Taylor, Ronald C.; Conrad, Neal; Vonstein, Veronika; Goelzer, Anne; Fromion, Vincent; Rocha, Miguel; Rocha, Isabel; Henry, Christopher S.

    2016-01-01

    We introduce a manually constructed and curated regulatory network model that describes the current state of knowledge of transcriptional regulation of Bacillus subtilis. The model corresponds to an updated and enlarged version of the regulatory model of central metabolism originally proposed in 2008. We extended the original network to the whole genome by integration of information from DBTBS, a compendium of regulatory data that includes promoters, transcription factors (TFs), binding sites, motifs, and regulated operons. Additionally, we consolidated our network with all the information on regulation included in the SporeWeb and Subtiwiki community-curated resources on B. subtilis. Finally, we reconciled our network with data from RegPrecise, which recently released their own less comprehensive reconstruction of the regulatory network for B. subtilis. Our model describes 275 regulators and their target genes, representing 30 different mechanisms of regulation such as TFs, RNA switches, Riboswitches, and small regulatory RNAs. Overall, regulatory information is included in the model for ∼2500 of the ∼4200 genes in B. subtilis 168. In an effort to further expand our knowledge of B. subtilis regulation, we reconciled our model with expression data. For this process, we reconstructed the Atomic Regulons (ARs) for B. subtilis, which are the sets of genes that share the same “ON” and “OFF” gene expression profiles across multiple samples of experimental data. We show how ARs for B. subtilis are able to capture many sets of genes corresponding to regulated operons in our manually curated network. Additionally, we demonstrate how ARs can be used to help expand or validate the knowledge of the regulatory networks by looking at highly correlated genes in the ARs for which regulatory information is lacking. During this process, we were also able to infer novel stimuli for hypothetical genes by exploring the genome expression metadata relating to experimental

  7. Reverse Engineering of Genome-wide Gene Regulatory Networks from Gene Expression Data.

    PubMed

    Liu, Zhi-Ping

    2015-02-01

    Transcriptional regulation plays vital roles in many fundamental biological processes. Reverse engineering of genome-wide regulatory networks from high-throughput transcriptomic data provides a promising way to characterize the global scenario of regulatory relationships between regulators and their targets. In this review, we summarize and categorize the main frameworks and methods currently available for inferring transcriptional regulatory networks from microarray gene expression profiling data. We overview each of strategies and introduce representative methods respectively. Their assumptions, advantages, shortcomings, and possible improvements and extensions are also clarified and commented.

  8. Reverse Engineering of Genome-wide Gene Regulatory Networks from Gene Expression Data

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Zhi-Ping

    2015-01-01

    Transcriptional regulation plays vital roles in many fundamental biological processes. Reverse engineering of genome-wide regulatory networks from high-throughput transcriptomic data provides a promising way to characterize the global scenario of regulatory relationships between regulators and their targets. In this review, we summarize and categorize the main frameworks and methods currently available for inferring transcriptional regulatory networks from microarray gene expression profiling data. We overview each of strategies and introduce representative methods respectively. Their assumptions, advantages, shortcomings, and possible improvements and extensions are also clarified and commented. PMID:25937810

  9. Using consensus bayesian network to model the reactive oxygen species regulatory pathway.

    PubMed

    Hu, Liangdong; Wang, Limin

    2013-01-01

    Bayesian network is one of the most successful graph models for representing the reactive oxygen species regulatory pathway. With the increasing number of microarray measurements, it is possible to construct the bayesian network from microarray data directly. Although large numbers of bayesian network learning algorithms have been developed, when applying them to learn bayesian networks from microarray data, the accuracies are low due to that the databases they used to learn bayesian networks contain too few microarray data. In this paper, we propose a consensus bayesian network which is constructed by combining bayesian networks from relevant literatures and bayesian networks learned from microarray data. It would have a higher accuracy than the bayesian networks learned from one database. In the experiment, we validated the bayesian network combination algorithm on several classic machine learning databases and used the consensus bayesian network to model the Escherichia coli's ROS pathway.

  10. Tracking of time-varying genomic regulatory networks with a LASSO-Kalman smoother

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    It is widely accepted that cellular requirements and environmental conditions dictate the architecture of genetic regulatory networks. Nonetheless, the status quo in regulatory network modeling and analysis assumes an invariant network topology over time. In this paper, we refocus on a dynamic perspective of genetic networks, one that can uncover substantial topological changes in network structure during biological processes such as developmental growth. We propose a novel outlook on the inference of time-varying genetic networks, from a limited number of noisy observations, by formulating the network estimation as a target tracking problem. We overcome the limited number of observations (small n large p problem) by performing tracking in a compressed domain. Assuming linear dynamics, we derive the LASSO-Kalman smoother, which recursively computes the minimum mean-square sparse estimate of the network connectivity at each time point. The LASSO operator, motivated by the sparsity of the genetic regulatory networks, allows simultaneous signal recovery and compression, thereby reducing the amount of required observations. The smoothing improves the estimation by incorporating all observations. We track the time-varying networks during the life cycle of the Drosophila melanogaster. The recovered networks show that few genes are permanent, whereas most are transient, acting only during specific developmental phases of the organism. PMID:24517200

  11. Gene regulatory network inference using fused LASSO on multiple data sets.

    PubMed

    Omranian, Nooshin; Eloundou-Mbebi, Jeanne M O; Mueller-Roeber, Bernd; Nikoloski, Zoran

    2016-02-11

    Devising computational methods to accurately reconstruct gene regulatory networks given gene expression data is key to systems biology applications. Here we propose a method for reconstructing gene regulatory networks by simultaneous consideration of data sets from different perturbation experiments and corresponding controls. The method imposes three biologically meaningful constraints: (1) expression levels of each gene should be explained by the expression levels of a small number of transcription factor coding genes, (2) networks inferred from different data sets should be similar with respect to the type and number of regulatory interactions, and (3) relationships between genes which exhibit similar differential behavior over the considered perturbations should be favored. We demonstrate that these constraints can be transformed in a fused LASSO formulation for the proposed method. The comparative analysis on transcriptomics time-series data from prokaryotic species, Escherichia coli and Mycobacterium tuberculosis, as well as a eukaryotic species, mouse, demonstrated that the proposed method has the advantages of the most recent approaches for regulatory network inference, while obtaining better performance and assigning higher scores to the true regulatory links. The study indicates that the combination of sparse regression techniques with other biologically meaningful constraints is a promising framework for gene regulatory network reconstructions.

  12. A Boolean Model of the Cardiac Gene Regulatory Network Determining First and Second Heart Field Identity

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Dao; Kestler, Hans A.; Kühl, Michael

    2012-01-01

    Two types of distinct cardiac progenitor cell populations can be identified during early heart development: the first heart field (FHF) and second heart field (SHF) lineage that later form the mature heart. They can be characterized by differential expression of transcription and signaling factors. These regulatory factors influence each other forming a gene regulatory network. Here, we present a core gene regulatory network for early cardiac development based on published temporal and spatial expression data of genes and their interactions. This gene regulatory network was implemented in a Boolean computational model. Simulations reveal stable states within the network model, which correspond to the regulatory states of the FHF and the SHF lineages. Furthermore, we are able to reproduce the expected temporal expression patterns of early cardiac factors mimicking developmental progression. Additionally, simulations of knock-down experiments within our model resemble published phenotypes of mutant mice. Consequently, this gene regulatory network retraces the early steps and requirements of cardiogenic mesoderm determination in a way appropriate to enhance the understanding of heart development. PMID:23056457

  13. Conformational transitions of the catalytic domain of heme-regulated eukaryotic initiation factor 2α kinase, a key translational regulatory molecule.

    PubMed

    Sreejith, R K; Suresh, C G; Bhosale, Siddharth H; Bhavnani, Varsha; Kumar, Avinash; Gaikwad, Sushama M; Pal, Jayanta K

    2012-01-01

    In mammalian cells, the heme-regulated inhibitor (HRI) plays a critical role in the regulation of protein synthesis at the initiation step through phosphorylation of α-subunit of the eukaryotic initiation factor 2 (eIF2). In this study we have cloned and performed biophysical characterization of the kinase catalytic domain (KD) of rabbit HRI. The KD described here comprises kinase 1, the kinase insertion domain (KI) and kinase 2. We report here the existence of an active and stable monomer of HRI (KD). The HRI (KD) containing three tryptophan residues was examined for its conformational transitions occurring under various denaturing conditions using steady-state and time-resolved tryptophan fluorescence, circular dichroism (CD) and hydrophobic dye binding. The parameter A and phase diagram analysis revealed multi-state unfolding and existence of three stable intermediates during guanidine hydrochloride (Gdn-HCl) induced unfolding of HRI (KD). The protein treated with 6 M Gdn-HCl showed collisional and static mechanism of acrylamide quenching and the constants (K(sv) = 3.08 M(-1) and K(s)= 5.62 M(-1)) were resolved using time resolved fluorescence titration. Based on pH, guanidine hydrochloride and temperature mediated transitions, HRI (KD) appears to exemplify a rigid molten globule-like intermediate with compact secondary structure, altered tertiary structure and exposed hydrophobic patches at pH 3.0. The results indicate the inherent structural stability of HRI (KD), a member of the class of stress response proteins.

  14. Regulatory Aspects of Smart Water Networks in the U.S.

    EPA Science Inventory

    The presentation addresses regulatory aspects of smart water networks in the U.S. It will be presented at the Smart Water Networks Forum (SWAN) annual conference in London, England from April 29-30, 2015. The conference will bring together key voices in the smart water space f...

  15. Processing of heme and heme-containing proteins by bacteria.

    PubMed

    Stojiljkovic, Igor; Perkins-Balding, Donna

    2002-04-01

    An extensive amount of new knowledge on bacterial systems involved in heme processing has been accumulated in the last 10 years. We discuss common themes in heme transport across bacterial outer and inner membranes, emphasizing proteins and mechanisms involved. The processing of heme in the bacterial cytoplasm is extensively covered, and a new hypothesis about the fate of heme in the bacterial cell is presented. Auxiliary genes involved in heme utilization, i.e., TonB, proteases, proteins involved in heme storage and pigmentation, as well as genes involved in regulation of heme assimilation are reviewed.

  16. Extended evolution: A conceptual framework for integrating regulatory networks and niche construction.

    PubMed

    Laubichler, Manfred D; Renn, Jürgen

    2015-11-01

    This paper introduces a conceptual framework for the evolution of complex systems based on the integration of regulatory network and niche construction theories. It is designed to apply equally to cases of biological, social and cultural evolution. Within the conceptual framework we focus especially on the transformation of complex networks through the linked processes of externalization and internalization of causal factors between regulatory networks and their corresponding niches and argue that these are an important part of evolutionary explanations. This conceptual framework extends previous evolutionary models and focuses on several challenges, such as the path-dependent nature of evolutionary change, the dynamics of evolutionary innovation and the expansion of inheritance systems.

  17. Anticipated Ethics and Regulatory Challenges in PCORnet: The National Patient-Centered Clinical Research Network.

    PubMed

    Ali, Joseph; Califf, Robert; Sugarman, Jeremy

    2016-01-01

    PCORnet, the National Patient-Centered Clinical Research Network, seeks to establish a robust national health data network for patient-centered comparative effectiveness research. This article reports the results of a PCORnet survey designed to identify the ethics and regulatory challenges anticipated in network implementation. A 12-item online survey was developed by leadership of the PCORnet Ethics and Regulatory Task Force; responses were collected from the 29 PCORnet networks. The most pressing ethics issues identified related to informed consent, patient engagement, privacy and confidentiality, and data sharing. High priority regulatory issues included IRB coordination, privacy and confidentiality, informed consent, and data sharing. Over 150 IRBs and five different approaches to managing multisite IRB review were identified within PCORnet. Further empirical and scholarly work, as well as practical and policy guidance, is essential if important initiatives that rely on comparative effectiveness research are to move forward.

  18. Solution NMR characterization of an unusual distal H-bond network in the active site of the cyanide-inhibited, human heme oxygenase complex of the symmetric substrate, 2,4-dimethyldeuterohemin.

    PubMed

    Li, Yiming; Syvitski, Ray T; Auclair, Karine; Wilks, Angela; Ortiz De Montellano, Paul R; La Mar, Gerd N

    2002-09-06

    The presence of variable static hemin orientational disorder about the alpha-gamma-meso axis in the substrate complexes of mammalian heme oxygenase, together with the incomplete averaging of a second, dynamic disorder, for each hemin orientation, has led to NMR spectra with severe spectral overlap and loss of key two-dimensional correlations that seriously interfere with structural characterization in solution. We demonstrate that the symmetric substrate, 2,4-dimethyldeuterohemin, yields a single solution species for which the dynamic disorder is sufficiently rapid to allow effective and informative (1)H NMR structural characterization. A much more extensive, effective, and definitive NMR characterization of the cyanide-inhibited, symmetric heme complex of human heme oxygenase shows that the active site structure, with some minor differences, is essentially the same as that for the native protohemin in solution and crystal. A unique distal network that involves particularly strong hydrogen bonds, as well as inter-aromatic contacts, is described that is proposed to stabilize the position of the catalytically critical distal helix Asp-140 carboxylate (Liu, Y., Koenigs Lightning, L., Huang, H., Moënne-Loccoz, P., Schuller, D. J., Poulos, T. L., Loehr, T. M., and Ortiz de Montellano, P. R. (2000) J. Biol. Chem. 275, 34501-34507). The potential role of this network in placing a water molecule to stabilize the hydroperoxy species and as a template for the condensation of the distal helix upon substrate binding are discussed.

  19. Community Structure Reveals Biologically Functional Modules in MEF2C Transcriptional Regulatory Network

    PubMed Central

    Alcalá-Corona, Sergio A.; Velázquez-Caldelas, Tadeo E.; Espinal-Enríquez, Jesús; Hernández-Lemus, Enrique

    2016-01-01

    Gene regulatory networks are useful to understand the activity behind the complex mechanisms in transcriptional regulation. A main goal in contemporary biology is using such networks to understand the systemic regulation of gene expression. In this work, we carried out a systematic study of a transcriptional regulatory network derived from a comprehensive selection of all potential transcription factor interactions downstream from MEF2C, a human transcription factor master regulator. By analyzing the connectivity structure of such network, we were able to find different biologically functional processes and specific biochemical pathways statistically enriched in communities of genes into the network, such processes are related to cell signaling, cell cycle and metabolism. In this way we further support the hypothesis that structural properties of biological networks encode an important part of their functional behavior in eukaryotic cells. PMID:27252657

  20. Design principles of regulatory networks: searching for the molecular algorithms of the cell.

    PubMed

    Lim, Wendell A; Lee, Connie M; Tang, Chao

    2013-01-24

    A challenge in biology is to understand how complex molecular networks in the cell execute sophisticated regulatory functions. Here we explore the idea that there are common and general principles that link network structures to biological functions, principles that constrain the design solutions that evolution can converge upon for accomplishing a given cellular task. We describe approaches for classifying networks based on abstract architectures and functions, rather than on the specific molecular components of the networks. For any common regulatory task, can we define the space of all possible molecular solutions? Such inverse approaches might ultimately allow the assembly of a design table of core molecular algorithms that could serve as a guide for building synthetic networks and modulating disease networks.

  1. Design Principles of Regulatory Networks: Searching for the Molecular Algorithms of the Cell

    PubMed Central

    Lim, Wendell A.; Lee, Connie M.; Tang, Chao

    2013-01-01

    A challenge in biology is to understand how complex molecular networks in the cell execute sophisticated regulatory functions. Here we explore the idea that there are common and general principles that link network structures to biological functions, principles that constrain the design solutions that evolution can converge upon for accomplishing a given cellular task. We describe approaches for classifying networks based on abstract architectures and functions, rather than on the specific molecular components of the networks. For any common regulatory task, can we define the space of all possible molecular solutions? Such inverse approaches might ultimately allow the assembly of a design table of core molecular algorithms that could serve as a guide for building synthetic networks and modulating disease networks. PMID:23352241

  2. Predictive regulatory models in Drosophila melanogaster by integrative inference of transcriptional networks.

    PubMed

    Marbach, Daniel; Roy, Sushmita; Ay, Ferhat; Meyer, Patrick E; Candeias, Rogerio; Kahveci, Tamer; Bristow, Christopher A; Kellis, Manolis

    2012-07-01

    Gaining insights on gene regulation from large-scale functional data sets is a grand challenge in systems biology. In this article, we develop and apply methods for transcriptional regulatory network inference from diverse functional genomics data sets and demonstrate their value for gene function and gene expression prediction. We formulate the network inference problem in a machine-learning framework and use both supervised and unsupervised methods to predict regulatory edges by integrating transcription factor (TF) binding, evolutionarily conserved sequence motifs, gene expression, and chromatin modification data sets as input features. Applying these methods to Drosophila melanogaster, we predict ∼300,000 regulatory edges in a network of ∼600 TFs and 12,000 target genes. We validate our predictions using known regulatory interactions, gene functional annotations, tissue-specific expression, protein-protein interactions, and three-dimensional maps of chromosome conformation. We use the inferred network to identify putative functions for hundreds of previously uncharacterized genes, including many in nervous system development, which are independently confirmed based on their tissue-specific expression patterns. Last, we use the regulatory network to predict target gene expression levels as a function of TF expression, and find significantly higher predictive power for integrative networks than for motif or ChIP-based networks. Our work reveals the complementarity between physical evidence of regulatory interactions (TF binding, motif conservation) and functional evidence (coordinated expression or chromatin patterns) and demonstrates the power of data integration for network inference and studies of gene regulation at the systems level.

  3. Gene Regulatory Network Inferences Using a Maximum-Relevance and Maximum-Significance Strategy

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Wei; Zhu, Wen; Liao, Bo; Chen, Xiangtao

    2016-01-01

    Recovering gene regulatory networks from expression data is a challenging problem in systems biology that provides valuable information on the regulatory mechanisms of cells. A number of algorithms based on computational models are currently used to recover network topology. However, most of these algorithms have limitations. For example, many models tend to be complicated because of the “large p, small n” problem. In this paper, we propose a novel regulatory network inference method called the maximum-relevance and maximum-significance network (MRMSn) method, which converts the problem of recovering networks into a problem of how to select the regulator genes for each gene. To solve the latter problem, we present an algorithm that is based on information theory and selects the regulator genes for a specific gene by maximizing the relevance and significance. A first-order incremental search algorithm is used to search for regulator genes. Eventually, a strict constraint is adopted to adjust all of the regulatory relationships according to the obtained regulator genes and thus obtain the complete network structure. We performed our method on five different datasets and compared our method to five state-of-the-art methods for network inference based on information theory. The results confirm the effectiveness of our method. PMID:27829000

  4. MicroRNA and Transcription Factor Gene Regulatory Network Analysis Reveals Key Regulatory Elements Associated with Prostate Cancer Progression

    PubMed Central

    Sadeghi, Mehdi; Ranjbar, Bijan; Ganjalikhany, Mohamad Reza; M. Khan, Faiz; Schmitz, Ulf; Wolkenhauer, Olaf; Gupta, Shailendra K.

    2016-01-01

    Technological and methodological advances in multi-omics data generation and integration approaches help elucidate genetic features of complex biological traits and diseases such as prostate cancer. Due to its heterogeneity, the identification of key functional components involved in the regulation and progression of prostate cancer is a methodological challenge. In this study, we identified key regulatory interactions responsible for primary to metastasis transitions in prostate cancer using network inference approaches by integrating patient derived transcriptomic and miRomics data into gene/miRNA/transcription factor regulatory networks. One such network was derived for each of the clinical states of prostate cancer based on differentially expressed and significantly correlated gene, miRNA and TF pairs from the patient data. We identified key elements of each network using a network analysis approach and validated our results using patient survival analysis. We observed that HOXD10, BCL2 and PGR are the most important factors affected in primary prostate samples, whereas, in the metastatic state, STAT3, JUN and JUNB are playing a central role. Benefiting integrative networks our analysis suggests that some of these molecules were targeted by several overexpressed miRNAs which may have a major effect on the dysregulation of these molecules. For example, in the metastatic tumors five miRNAs (miR-671-5p, miR-665, miR-663, miR-512-3p and miR-371-5p) are mainly responsible for the dysregulation of STAT3 and hence can provide an opportunity for early detection of metastasis and development of alternative therapeutic approaches. Our findings deliver new details on key functional components in prostate cancer progression and provide opportunities for the development of alternative therapeutic approaches. PMID:28005952

  5. Gene Regulatory Networks from Multifactorial Perturbations Using Graphical Lasso: Application to the DREAM4 Challenge

    PubMed Central

    Menéndez, Patricia; Kourmpetis, Yiannis A. I.; ter Braak, Cajo J. F.; van Eeuwijk, Fred A.

    2010-01-01

    A major challenge in the field of systems biology consists of predicting gene regulatory networks based on different training data. Within the DREAM4 initiative, we took part in the multifactorial sub-challenge that aimed to predict gene regulatory networks of size 100 from training data consisting of steady-state levels obtained after applying multifactorial perturbations to the original in silico network. Due to the static character of the challenge data, we tackled the problem via a sparse Gaussian Markov Random Field, which relates network topology with the covariance inverse generated by the gene measurements. As for the computations, we used the Graphical Lasso algorithm which provided a large range of candidate network topologies. The main task was to select the optimal network topology and for that, different model selection criteria were explored. The selected networks were compared with the golden standards and the results ranked using the scoring metrics applied in the challenge, giving a better insight in our submission and the way to improve it. Our approach provides an easy statistical and computational framework to infer gene regulatory networks that is suitable for large networks, even if the number of the observations (perturbations) is greater than the number of variables (genes). PMID:21188141

  6. Reconstruction of gene regulatory network related to photosynthesis in Arabidopsis thaliana

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Xianbin; Zheng, Guangyong; Shan, Lanlan; Meng, Guofeng; Vingron, Martin; Liu, Qi; Zhu, Xin-Guang

    2014-01-01

    Photosynthesis is one of the most important biological processes on the earth. So far, though the molecular mechanisms underlying photosynthesis is well understood, however, the regulatory networks of photosynthesis are poorly studied. Given the current interest in improving photosynthetic efficiency for greater crop yield, elucidating the detailed regulatory networks controlling the construction and maintenance of photosynthetic machinery is not only scientifically significant but also holding great potential in agricultural application. In this study, we first identified transcription factors (TFs) related to photosynthesis through the TRAP approach using position weight matrix information. Then, for TFs related to photosynthesis, interactions between them and their targets were also determined by the ARACNE approach. Finally, a gene regulatory network was established by combining TF-targets information generated by these two approaches. Topological analysis of the regulatory network suggested that (a) the regulatory network of photosynthesis has a property of “small world”; (b) there is substantial coordination mediated by transcription factors between different components in photosynthesis. PMID:24982665

  7. Selection Shapes Transcriptional Logic and Regulatory Specialization in Genetic Networks

    PubMed Central

    Fogelmark, Karl; Peterson, Carsten; Troein, Carl

    2016-01-01

    Background Living organisms need to regulate their gene expression in response to environmental signals and internal cues. This is a computational task where genes act as logic gates that connect to form transcriptional networks, which are shaped at all scales by evolution. Large-scale mutations such as gene duplications and deletions add and remove network components, whereas smaller mutations alter the connections between them. Selection determines what mutations are accepted, but its importance for shaping the resulting networks has been debated. Methodology To investigate the effects of selection in the shaping of transcriptional networks, we derive transcriptional logic from a combinatorially powerful yet tractable model of the binding between DNA and transcription factors. By evolving the resulting networks based on their ability to function as either a simple decision system or a circadian clock, we obtain information on the regulation and logic rules encoded in functional transcriptional networks. Comparisons are made between networks evolved for different functions, as well as with structurally equivalent but non-functional (neutrally evolved) networks, and predictions are validated against the transcriptional network of E. coli. Principal Findings We find that the logic rules governing gene expression depend on the function performed by the network. Unlike the decision systems, the circadian clocks show strong cooperative binding and negative regulation, which achieves tight temporal control of gene expression. Furthermore, we find that transcription factors act preferentially as either activators or repressors, both when binding multiple sites for a single target gene and globally in the transcriptional networks. This separation into positive and negative regulators requires gene duplications, which highlights the interplay between mutation and selection in shaping the transcriptional networks. PMID:26927540

  8. Improvement of heme oxygenase-1-based heme sensor for quantifying free heme in biological samples.

    PubMed

    Taira, Junichi; Nakashima, Yukinori; Yoshihara, Shun; Koga, Shinya; Sueda, Shinji; Komatsu, Hideyuki; Higashimoto, Yuichiro; Takahashi, Toru; Tanioka, Nohito; Shimizu, Hiroko; Morimatsu, Hiroshi; Sakamoto, Hiroshi

    2015-11-15

    We recently reported a novel heme sensor using fluorescently labeled heme oxygenase-1; however, its inherent enzyme activity would be a potential obstacle in quantifying heme in biological samples. Here, we found that mutation of the catalytically important residue, Asp140, with histidine in the sensor not only diminished the heme degradation activity but also increased heme binding affinity. The sensor with a visible fluorophore was also found to be beneficial to avoid background emission from endogenous substance in biological samples. By using the improved heme sensor, we succeeded in quantifying free heme in rat hepatic samples for the first time.

  9. Hidden Markov induced Dynamic Bayesian Network for recovering time evolving gene regulatory networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Shijia; Wang, Yadong

    2015-12-01

    Dynamic Bayesian Networks (DBN) have been widely used to recover gene regulatory relationships from time-series data in computational systems biology. Its standard assumption is ‘stationarity’, and therefore, several research efforts have been recently proposed to relax this restriction. However, those methods suffer from three challenges: long running time, low accuracy and reliance on parameter settings. To address these problems, we propose a novel non-stationary DBN model by extending each hidden node of Hidden Markov Model into a DBN (called HMDBN), which properly handles the underlying time-evolving networks. Correspondingly, an improved structural EM algorithm is proposed to learn the HMDBN. It dramatically reduces searching space, thereby substantially improving computational efficiency. Additionally, we derived a novel generalized Bayesian Information Criterion under the non-stationary assumption (called BWBIC), which can help significantly improve the reconstruction accuracy and largely reduce over-fitting. Moreover, the re-estimation formulas for all parameters of our model are derived, enabling us to avoid reliance on parameter settings. Compared to the state-of-the-art methods, the experimental evaluation of our proposed method on both synthetic and real biological data demonstrates more stably high prediction accuracy and significantly improved computation efficiency, even with no prior knowledge and parameter settings.

  10. Causal structure of oscillations in gene regulatory networks: Boolean analysis of ordinary differential equation attractors.

    PubMed

    Sun, Mengyang; Cheng, Xianrui; Socolar, Joshua E S

    2013-06-01

    A common approach to the modeling of gene regulatory networks is to represent activating or repressing interactions using ordinary differential equations for target gene concentrations that include Hill function dependences on regulator gene concentrations. An alternative formulation represents the same interactions using Boolean logic with time delays associated with each network link. We consider the attractors that emerge from the two types of models in the case of a simple but nontrivial network: a figure-8 network with one positive and one negative feedback loop. We show that the different modeling approaches give rise to the same qualitative set of attractors with the exception of a possible fixed point in the ordinary differential equation model in which concentrations sit at intermediate values. The properties of the attractors are most easily understood from the Boolean perspective, suggesting that time-delay Boolean modeling is a useful tool for understanding the logic of regulatory networks.

  11. Reconstruction and topological characterization of the sigma factor regulatory network of Mycobacterium tuberculosis

    PubMed Central

    Chauhan, Rinki; Ravi, Janani; Datta, Pratik; Chen, Tianlong; Schnappinger, Dirk; Bassler, Kevin E.; Balázsi, Gábor; Gennaro, Maria Laura

    2016-01-01

    Accessory sigma factors, which reprogram RNA polymerase to transcribe specific gene sets, activate bacterial adaptive responses to noxious environments. Here we reconstruct the complete sigma factor regulatory network of the human pathogen Mycobacterium tuberculosis by an integrated approach. The approach combines identification of direct regulatory interactions between M. tuberculosis sigma factors in an E. coli model system, validation of selected links in M. tuberculosis, and extensive literature review. The resulting network comprises 41 direct interactions among all 13 sigma factors. Analysis of network topology reveals (i) a three-tiered hierarchy initiating at master regulators, (ii) high connectivity and (iii) distinct communities containing multiple sigma factors. These topological features are likely associated with multi-layer signal processing and specialized stress responses involving multiple sigma factors. Moreover, the identification of overrepresented network motifs, such as autoregulation and coregulation of sigma and anti-sigma factor pairs, provides structural information that is relevant for studies of network dynamics. PMID:27029515

  12. Causal structure of oscillations in gene regulatory networks: Boolean analysis of ordinary differential equation attractors

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Mengyang; Cheng, Xianrui; Socolar, Joshua E. S.

    2013-01-01

    A common approach to the modeling of gene regulatory networks is to represent activating or repressing interactions using ordinary differential equations for target gene concentrations that include Hill function dependences on regulator gene concentrations. An alternative formulation represents the same interactions using Boolean logic with time delays associated with each network link. We consider the attractors that emerge from the two types of models in the case of a simple but nontrivial network: a figure-8 network with one positive and one negative feedback loop. We show that the different modeling approaches give rise to the same qualitative set of attractors with the exception of a possible fixed point in the ordinary differential equation model in which concentrations sit at intermediate values. The properties of the attractors are most easily understood from the Boolean perspective, suggesting that time-delay Boolean modeling is a useful tool for understanding the logic of regulatory networks. PMID:23822502

  13. Reconstruction and topological characterization of the sigma factor regulatory network of Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

    PubMed

    Chauhan, Rinki; Ravi, Janani; Datta, Pratik; Chen, Tianlong; Schnappinger, Dirk; Bassler, Kevin E; Balázsi, Gábor; Gennaro, Maria Laura

    2016-03-31

    Accessory sigma factors, which reprogram RNA polymerase to transcribe specific gene sets, activate bacterial adaptive responses to noxious environments. Here we reconstruct the complete sigma factor regulatory network of the human pathogen Mycobacterium tuberculosis by an integrated approach. The approach combines identification of direct regulatory interactions between M. tuberculosis sigma factors in an E. coli model system, validation of selected links in M. tuberculosis, and extensive literature review. The resulting network comprises 41 direct interactions among all 13 sigma factors. Analysis of network topology reveals (i) a three-tiered hierarchy initiating at master regulators, (ii) high connectivity and (iii) distinct communities containing multiple sigma factors. These topological features are likely associated with multi-layer signal processing and specialized stress responses involving multiple sigma factors. Moreover, the identification of overrepresented network motifs, such as autoregulation and coregulation of sigma and anti-sigma factor pairs, provides structural information that is relevant for studies of network dynamics.

  14. A new approach for modelling gene regulatory networks using fuzzy petri nets.

    PubMed

    Hamed, Raed I; Ahson, S I; Parveen, R

    2010-02-04

    Gene Regulatory Networks are models of genes and gene interactions at the expression level. The advent of microarray technology has challenged computer scientists to develop better algorithms for modeling the underlying regulatory relationship in between the genes. Fuzzy system has an ability to search microarray datasets for activator/repressor regulatory relationship. In this paper, we present a fuzzy reasoning model based on the Fuzzy Petri Net. The model considers the regulatory triplets by means of predicting changes in expression level of the target based on input expression level. This method eliminates possible false predictions from the classical fuzzy model thereby allowing a wider search space for inferring regulatory relationship. Through formalization of fuzzy reasoning, we propose an approach to construct a rulebased reasoning system. The experimental results show the proposed approach is feasible and acceptable to predict changes in expression level of the target gene.

  15. A Consensus Network of Gene Regulatory Factors in the Human Frontal Lobe

    PubMed Central

    Berto, Stefano; Perdomo-Sabogal, Alvaro; Gerighausen, Daniel; Qin, Jing; Nowick, Katja

    2016-01-01

    Cognitive abilities, such as memory, learning, language, problem solving, and planning, involve the frontal lobe and other brain areas. Not much is known yet about the molecular basis of cognitive abilities, but it seems clear that cognitive abilities are determined by the interplay of many genes. One approach for analyzing the genetic networks involved in cognitive functions is to study the coexpression networks of genes with known importance for proper cognitive functions, such as genes that have been associated with cognitive disorders like intellectual disability (ID) or autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Because many of these genes are gene regulatory factors (GRFs) we aimed to provide insights into the gene regulatory networks active in the human frontal lobe. Using genome wide human frontal lobe expression data from 10 independent data sets, we first derived 10 individual coexpression networks for all GRFs including their potential target genes. We observed a high level of variability among these 10 independently derived networks, pointing out that relying on results from a single study can only provide limited biological insights. To instead focus on the most confident information from these 10 networks we developed a method for integrating such independently derived networks into a consensus network. This consensus network revealed robust GRF interactions that are conserved across the frontal lobes of different healthy human individuals. Within this network, we detected a strong central module that is enriched for 166 GRFs known to be involved in brain development and/or cognitive disorders. Interestingly, several hubs of the consensus network encode for GRFs that have not yet been associated with brain functions. Their central role in the network suggests them as excellent new candidates for playing an essential role in the regulatory network of the human frontal lobe, which should be investigated in future studies. PMID:27014338

  16. A Consensus Network of Gene Regulatory Factors in the Human Frontal Lobe.

    PubMed

    Berto, Stefano; Perdomo-Sabogal, Alvaro; Gerighausen, Daniel; Qin, Jing; Nowick, Katja

    2016-01-01

    Cognitive abilities, such as memory, learning, language, problem solving, and planning, involve the frontal lobe and other brain areas. Not much is known yet about the molecular basis of cognitive abilities, but it seems clear that cognitive abilities are determined by the interplay of many genes. One approach for analyzing the genetic networks involved in cognitive functions is to study the coexpression networks of genes with known importance for proper cognitive functions, such as genes that have been associated with cognitive disorders like intellectual disability (ID) or autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Because many of these genes are gene regulatory factors (GRFs) we aimed to provide insights into the gene regulatory networks active in the human frontal lobe. Using genome wide human frontal lobe expression data from 10 independent data sets, we first derived 10 individual coexpression networks for all GRFs including their potential target genes. We observed a high level of variability among these 10 independently derived networks, pointing out that relying on results from a single study can only provide limited biological insights. To instead focus on the most confident information from these 10 networks we developed a method for integrating such independently derived networks into a consensus network. This consensus network revealed robust GRF interactions that are conserved across the frontal lobes of different healthy human individuals. Within this network, we detected a strong central module that is enriched for 166 GRFs known to be involved in brain development and/or cognitive disorders. Interestingly, several hubs of the consensus network encode for GRFs that have not yet been associated with brain functions. Their central role in the network suggests them as excellent new candidates for playing an essential role in the regulatory network of the human frontal lobe, which should be investigated in future studies.

  17. Bayesian Computation Methods for Inferring Regulatory Network Models Using Biomedical Data.

    PubMed

    Tian, Tianhai

    2016-01-01

    The rapid advancement of high-throughput technologies provides huge amounts of information for gene expression and protein activity in the genome-wide scale. The availability of genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics, and metabolomics dataset gives an unprecedented opportunity to study detailed molecular regulations that is very important to precision medicine. However, it is still a significant challenge to design effective and efficient method to infer the network structure and dynamic property of regulatory networks. In recent years a number of computing methods have been designed to explore the regulatory mechanisms as well as estimate unknown model parameters. Among them, the Bayesian inference method can combine both prior knowledge and experimental data to generate updated information regarding the regulatory mechanisms. This chapter gives a brief review for Bayesian statistical methods that are used to infer the network structure and estimate model parameters based on experimental data.

  18. Genome-wide network of regulatory genes for construction of a chordate embryo.

    PubMed

    Shoguchi, Eiichi; Hamaguchi, Makoto; Satoh, Nori

    2008-04-15

    Animal development is controlled by gene regulation networks that are composed of sequence-specific transcription factors (TF) and cell signaling molecules (ST). Although housekeeping genes have been reported to show clustering in the animal genomes, whether the genes comprising a given regulatory network are physically clustered on a chromosome is uncertain. We examined this question in the present study. Ascidians are the closest living relatives of vertebrates, and their tadpole-type larva represents the basic body plan of chordates. The Ciona intestinalis genome contains 390 core TF genes and 119 major ST genes. Previous gene disruption assays led to the formulation of a basic chordate embryonic blueprint, based on over 3000 genetic interactions among 79 zygotic regulatory genes. Here, we mapped the regulatory genes, including all 79 regulatory genes, on the 14 pairs of Ciona chromosomes by fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH). Chromosomal localization of upstream and downstream regulatory genes demonstrates that the components of coherent developmental gene networks are evenly distributed over the 14 chromosomes. Thus, this study provides the first comprehensive evidence that the physical clustering of regulatory genes, or their target genes, is not relevant for the genome-wide control of gene expression during development.

  19. Principles of dynamical modularity in biological regulatory networks

    PubMed Central

    Deritei, Dávid; Aird, William C.; Ercsey-Ravasz, Mária; Regan, Erzsébet Ravasz

    2016-01-01

    Intractable diseases such as cancer are associated with breakdown in multiple individual functions, which conspire to create unhealthy phenotype-combinations. An important challenge is to decipher how these functions are coordinated in health and disease. We approach this by drawing on dynamical systems theory. We posit that distinct phenotype-combinations are generated by interactions among robust regulatory switches, each in control of a discrete set of phenotypic outcomes. First, we demonstrate the advantage of characterizing multi-switch regulatory systems in terms of their constituent switches by building a multiswitch cell cycle model which points to novel, testable interactions critical for early G2/M commitment to division. Second, we define quantitative measures of dynamical modularity, namely that global cell states are discrete combinations of switch-level phenotypes. Finally, we formulate three general principles that govern the way coupled switches coordinate their function. PMID:26979940

  20. Identification of regulatory network hubs that control lipid metabolism in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii.

    PubMed

    Gargouri, Mahmoud; Park, Jeong-Jin; Holguin, F Omar; Kim, Min-Jeong; Wang, Hongxia; Deshpande, Rahul R; Shachar-Hill, Yair; Hicks, Leslie M; Gang, David R

    2015-08-01

    Microalgae-based biofuels are promising sources of alternative energy, but improvements throughout the production process are required to establish them as economically feasible. One of the most influential improvements would be a significant increase in lipid yields, which could be achieved by altering the regulation of lipid biosynthesis and accumulation. Chlamydomonas reinhardtii accumulates oil (triacylglycerols, TAG) in response to nitrogen (N) deprivation. Although a few important regulatory genes have been identified that are involved in controlling this process, a global understanding of the larger regulatory network has not been developed. In order to uncover this network in this species, a combined omics (transcriptomic, proteomic and metabolomic) analysis was applied to cells grown in a time course experiment after a shift from N-replete to N-depleted conditions. Changes in transcript and protein levels of 414 predicted transcription factors (TFs) and transcriptional regulators (TRs) were monitored relative to other genes. The TF and TR genes were thus classified by two separate measures: up-regulated versus down-regulated and early response versus late response relative to two phases of polar lipid synthesis (before and after TAG biosynthesis initiation). Lipidomic and primary metabolite profiling generated compound accumulation levels that were integrated with the transcript dataset and TF profiling to produce a transcriptional regulatory network. Evaluation of this proposed regulatory network led to the identification of several regulatory hubs that control many aspects of cellular metabolism, from N assimilation and metabolism, to central metabolism, photosynthesis and lipid metabolism.

  1. Identification of regulatory network hubs that control lipid metabolism in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii

    PubMed Central

    Gargouri, Mahmoud; Park, Jeong-Jin; Holguin, F. Omar; Kim, Min-Jeong; Wang, Hongxia; Deshpande, Rahul R.; Shachar-Hill, Yair; Hicks, Leslie M.; Gang, David R.

    2015-01-01

    Microalgae-based biofuels are promising sources of alternative energy, but improvements throughout the production process are required to establish them as economically feasible. One of the most influential improvements would be a significant increase in lipid yields, which could be achieved by altering the regulation of lipid biosynthesis and accumulation. Chlamydomonas reinhardtii accumulates oil (triacylglycerols, TAG) in response to nitrogen (N) deprivation. Although a few important regulatory genes have been identified that are involved in controlling this process, a global understanding of the larger regulatory network has not been developed. In order to uncover this network in this species, a combined omics (transcriptomic, proteomic and metabolomic) analysis was applied to cells grown in a time course experiment after a shift from N-replete to N-depleted conditions. Changes in transcript and protein levels of 414 predicted transcription factors (TFs) and transcriptional regulators (TRs) were monitored relative to other genes. The TF and TR genes were thus classified by two separate measures: up-regulated versus down-regulated and early response versus late response relative to two phases of polar lipid synthesis (before and after TAG biosynthesis initiation). Lipidomic and primary metabolite profiling generated compound accumulation levels that were integrated with the transcript dataset and TF profiling to produce a transcriptional regulatory network. Evaluation of this proposed regulatory network led to the identification of several regulatory hubs that control many aspects of cellular metabolism, from N assimilation and metabolism, to central metabolism, photosynthesis and lipid metabolism. PMID:26022256

  2. Identification of regulatory network hubs that control lipid metabolism in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii

    SciTech Connect

    Gargouri, Mahmoud; Park, Jeong -Jin; Holguin, F. Omar; Kim, Min -Jeong; Wang, Hongxia; Deshpande, Rahul R.; Shachar-Hill, Yair; Hicks, Leslie M.; Gang, David R.

    2015-05-28

    Microalgae-based biofuels are promising sources of alternative energy, but improvements throughout the production process are required to establish them as economically feasible. One of the most influential improvements would be a significant increase in lipid yields, which could be achieved by altering the regulation of lipid biosynthesis and accumulation. Chlamydomonas reinhardtii accumulates oil (triacylglycerols, TAG) in response to nitrogen (N) deprivation. Although a few important regulatory genes have been identified that are involved in controlling this process, a global understanding of the larger regulatory network has not been developed. In order to uncover this network in this species, a combined omics (transcriptomic, proteomic and metabolomic) analysis was applied to cells grown in a time course experiment after a shift from N-replete to N-depleted conditions. Changes in transcript and protein levels of 414 predicted transcription factors (TFs) and transcriptional regulators (TRs) were monitored relative to other genes. The TF and TR genes were thus classified by two separate measures: up-regulated versus down-regulated and early response versus late response relative to two phases of polar lipid synthesis (before and after TAG biosynthesis initiation). Lipidomic and primary metabolite profiling generated compound accumulation levels that were integrated with the transcript dataset and TF profiling to produce a transcriptional regulatory network. In conclusion, evaluation of this proposed regulatory network led to the identification of several regulatory hubs that control many aspects of cellular metabolism, from N assimilation and metabolism, to central metabolism, photosynthesis and lipid metabolism.

  3. Identification of cancer-related genes and motifs in the human gene regulatory network.

    PubMed

    Carson, Matthew B; Gu, Jianlei; Yu, Guangjun; Lu, Hui

    2015-08-01

    The authors investigated the regulatory network motifs and corresponding motif positions of cancer-related genes. First, they mapped disease-related genes to a transcription factor regulatory network. Next, they calculated statistically significant motifs and subsequently identified positions within these motifs that were enriched in cancer-related genes. Potential mechanisms of these motifs and positions are discussed. These results could be used to identify other disease- and cancer-related genes and could also suggest mechanisms for how these genes relate to co-occurring diseases.

  4. Reconstructing differentially co-expressed gene modules and regulatory networks of soybean cells

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Current experimental evidence indicates that functionally related genes show coordinated expression in order to perform their cellular functions. In this way, the cell transcriptional machinery can respond optimally to internal or external stimuli. This provides a research opportunity to identify and study co-expressed gene modules whose transcription is controlled by shared gene regulatory networks. Results We developed and integrated a set of computational methods of differential gene expression analysis, gene clustering, gene network inference, gene function prediction, and DNA motif identification to automatically identify differentially co-expressed gene modules, reconstruct their regulatory networks, and validate their correctness. We tested the methods using microarray data derived from soybean cells grown under various stress conditions. Our methods were able to identify 42 coherent gene modules within which average gene expression correlation coefficients are greater than 0.8 and reconstruct their putative regulatory networks. A total of 32 modules and their regulatory networks were further validated by the coherence of predicted gene functions and the consistency of putative transcription factor binding motifs. Approximately half of the 32 modules were partially supported by the literature, which demonstrates that the bioinformatic methods used can help elucidate the molecular responses of soybean cells upon various environmental stresses. Conclusions The bioinformatics methods and genome-wide data sources for gene expression, clustering, regulation, and function analysis were integrated seamlessly into one modular protocol to systematically analyze and infer modules and networks from only differential expression genes in soybean cells grown under stress conditions. Our approach appears to effectively reduce the complexity of the problem, and is sufficiently robust and accurate to generate a rather complete and detailed view of putative soybean

  5. Inference of gene regulatory networks from genome-wide knockout fitness data

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Liming; Wang, Xiaodong; Arkin, Adam P.; Samoilov, Michael S.

    2013-01-01

    Motivation: Genome-wide fitness is an emerging type of high-throughput biological data generated for individual organisms by creating libraries of knockouts, subjecting them to broad ranges of environmental conditions, and measuring the resulting clone-specific fitnesses. Since fitness is an organism-scale measure of gene regulatory network behaviour, it may offer certain advantages when insights into such phenotypical and functional features are of primary interest over individual gene expression. Previous works have shown that genome-wide fitness data can be used to uncover novel gene regulatory interactions, when compared with results of more conventional gene expression analysis. Yet, to date, few algorithms have been proposed for systematically using genome-wide mutant fitness data for gene regulatory network inference. Results: In this article, we describe a model and propose an inference algorithm for using fitness data from knockout libraries to identify underlying gene regulatory networks. Unlike most prior methods, the presented approach captures not only structural, but also dynamical and non-linear nature of biomolecular systems involved. A state–space model with non-linear basis is used for dynamically describing gene regulatory networks. Network structure is then elucidated by estimating unknown model parameters. Unscented Kalman filter is used to cope with the non-linearities introduced in the model, which also enables the algorithm to run in on-line mode for practical use. Here, we demonstrate that the algorithm provides satisfying results for both synthetic data as well as empirical measurements of GAL network in yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae and TyrR–LiuR network in bacteria Shewanella oneidensis. Availability: MATLAB code and datasets are available to download at http://www.duke.edu/∼lw174/Fitness.zip and http://genomics.lbl.gov/supplemental/fitness-bioinf/ Contact: wangx@ee.columbia.edu or mssamoilov@lbl.gov Supplementary information

  6. A Functional and Regulatory Network Associated with PIP Expression in Human Breast Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Debily, Marie-Anne; Marhomy, Sandrine El; Boulanger, Virginie; Eveno, Eric; Mariage-Samson, Régine; Camarca, Alessandra; Auffray, Charles; Piatier-Tonneau, Dominique; Imbeaud, Sandrine

    2009-01-01

    Background The PIP (prolactin-inducible protein) gene has been shown to be expressed in breast cancers, with contradictory results concerning its implication. As both the physiological role and the molecular pathways in which PIP is involved are poorly understood, we conducted combined gene expression profiling and network analysis studies on selected breast cancer cell lines presenting distinct PIP expression levels and hormonal receptor status, to explore the functional and regulatory network of PIP co-modulated genes. Principal Findings Microarray analysis allowed identification of genes co-modulated with PIP independently of modulations resulting from hormonal treatment or cell line heterogeneity. Relevant clusters of genes that can discriminate between [PIP+] and [PIP−] cells were identified. Functional and regulatory network analyses based on a knowledge database revealed a master network of PIP co-modulated genes, including many interconnecting oncogenes and tumor suppressor genes, half of which were detected as differentially expressed through high-precision measurements. The network identified appears associated with an inhibition of proliferation coupled with an increase of apoptosis and an enhancement of cell adhesion in breast cancer cell lines, and contains many genes with a STAT5 regulatory motif in their promoters. Conclusions Our global exploratory approach identified biological pathways modulated along with PIP expression, providing further support for its good prognostic value of disease-free survival in breast cancer. Moreover, our data pointed to the importance of a regulatory subnetwork associated with PIP expression in which STAT5 appears as a potential transcriptional regulator. PMID:19262752

  7. Stochasticity, Bistability and the Wisdom of Crowds: A Model for Associative Learning in Genetic Regulatory Networks

    PubMed Central

    Sorek, Matan; Balaban, Nathalie Q.; Loewenstein, Yonatan

    2013-01-01

    It is generally believed that associative memory in the brain depends on multistable synaptic dynamics, which enable the synapses to maintain their value for extended periods of time. However, multistable dynamics are not restricted to synapses. In particular, the dynamics of some genetic regulatory networks are multistable, raising the possibility that even single cells, in the absence of a nervous system, are capable of learning associations. Here we study a standard genetic regulatory network model with bistable elements and stochastic dynamics. We demonstrate that such a genetic regulatory network model is capable of learning multiple, general, overlapping associations. The capacity of the network, defined as the number of associations that can be simultaneously stored and retrieved, is proportional to the square root of the number of bistable elements in the genetic regulatory network. Moreover, we compute the capacity of a clonal population of cells, such as in a colony of bacteria or a tissue, to store associations. We show that even if the cells do not interact, the capacity of the population to store associations substantially exceeds that of a single cell and is proportional to the number of bistable elements. Thus, we show that even single cells are endowed with the computational power to learn associations, a power that is substantially enhanced when these cells form a population. PMID:23990765

  8. Complex and unexpected dynamics in simple genetic regulatory networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borg, Yanika; Ullner, Ekkehard; Alagha, Afnan; Alsaedi, Ahmed; Nesbeth, Darren; Zaikin, Alexey

    2014-03-01

    One aim of synthetic biology is to construct increasingly complex genetic networks from interconnected simpler ones to address challenges in medicine and biotechnology. However, as systems increase in size and complexity, emergent properties lead to unexpected and complex dynamics due to nonlinear and nonequilibrium properties from component interactions. We focus on four different studies of biological systems which exhibit complex and unexpected dynamics. Using simple synthetic genetic networks, small and large populations of phase-coupled quorum sensing repressilators, Goodwin oscillators, and bistable switches, we review how coupled and stochastic components can result in clustering, chaos, noise-induced coherence and speed-dependent decision making. A system of repressilators exhibits oscillations, limit cycles, steady states or chaos depending on the nature and strength of the coupling mechanism. In large repressilator networks, rich dynamics can also be exhibited, such as clustering and chaos. In populations of Goodwin oscillators, noise can induce coherent oscillations. In bistable systems, the speed with which incoming external signals reach steady state can bias the network towards particular attractors. These studies showcase the range of dynamical behavior that simple synthetic genetic networks can exhibit. In addition, they demonstrate the ability of mathematical modeling to analyze nonlinearity and inhomogeneity within these systems.

  9. Analysis of Gene Sets Based on the Underlying Regulatory Network

    PubMed Central

    Michailidis, George

    2009-01-01

    Abstract Networks are often used to represent the interactions among genes and proteins. These interactions are known to play an important role in vital cell functions and should be included in the analysis of genes that are differentially expressed. Methods of gene set analysis take advantage of external biological information and analyze a priori defined sets of genes. These methods can potentially preserve the correlation among genes; however, they do not directly incorporate the information about the gene network. In this paper, we propose a latent variable model that directly incorporates the network information. We then use the theory of mixed linear models to present a general inference framework for the problem of testing the significance of subnetworks. Several possible test procedures are introduced and a network based method for testing the changes in expression levels of genes as well as the structure of the network is presented. The performance of the proposed method is compared with methods of gene set analysis using both simulation studies, as well as real data on genes related to the galactose utilization pathway in yeast. PMID:19254181

  10. Characterizing the interplay betwen mulitple levels of organization within bacterial sigma factor regulatory networks

    SciTech Connect

    Yu, Qiu; Nagarajan, Harish; Embree, Mallory; Shieu, Wendy; Abate, Elisa; Juarez, Katy; Cho, Byung-Kwan; Elkins, James G; Nevin, Kelly P.; Barrett, Christian; Lovley, Derek; Palsson, Bernhard O.; Zengler, Karsten

    2013-01-01

    Bacteria contain multiple sigma factors, each targeting diverse, but often overlapping sets of promoters, thereby forming a complex network. The layout and deployment of such a sigma factor network directly impacts global transcriptional regulation and ultimately dictates the phenotype. Here we integrate multi-omic data sets to determine the topology, the operational, and functional states of the sigma factor network in Geobacter sulfurreducens, revealing a unique network topology of interacting sigma factors. Analysis of the operational state of the sigma factor network shows a highly modular structure with sN being the major regulator of energy metabolism. Surprisingly, the functional state of the network during the two most divergent growth conditions is nearly static, with sigma factor binding profiles almost invariant to environmental stimuli. This first comprehensive elucidation of the interplay between different levels of the sigma factor network organization is fundamental to characterize transcriptional regulatory mechanisms in bacteria.

  11. Regulatory network analysis of genes and microRNAs in human hepatoblastoma

    PubMed Central

    He, Jimin; Guo, Xiaoxin; Sun, Linlin; Wang, Ning; Bao, Jiwei

    2016-01-01

    Hepatoblastoma (HB) is a common type of primary tumor in children. Previous studies have examined the expression of genes, including transcription factors (TFs), target genes, host genes and microRNAs (miRNAs or miRs) associated with HB. However, the regulatory pathways of miRNAs and genes remain unclear. In the present study, a novel perspective is proposed, which focuses on HB and the associated regulatory pathways, to construct three networks at various levels, including a differentially expressed network, an associated network and a global network. Genes and miRNAs are considered as key factors in the network. In the three networks, the associations between each pair of factors, including TFs that regulate miRNAs, miRNAs that interact with target genes and miRNAs that are located at host genes, were analyzed. The differentially expressed network is considered to be the most crucial of the three networks. All factors in the differentially expressed network were mutated or differentially expressed, which indicated that the majority of the factors were cancerogenic factors that may lead to HB. In addition, the network contained numerous abnormal linkages that may trigger HB. If the expression of each factor was corrected to a normal level, HB may be successfully treated. The associated network included more HB-associated genes and miRNAs, and was useful for analyzing the pathogenesis of HB. By analyzing these close associations, the first and the last factor of the regulatory pathways were revealed to have important roles in HB. For example, v-myc avian myelocytomatosis viral oncogene neuroblastoma derived homolog (MYCN) was observed to regulate Homo sapiens (hsa)-miR-221, hsa-miR-18a and hsa-miR-17-5p, but no miRNAs targeted MYCN. In conclusion, the pathways and mechanisms underlying HB were expounded in the present study, which proposed a fundamental hypothesis for additional studies. PMID:27895778

  12. Reconstructing genome-wide regulatory network of E. coli using transcriptome data and predicted transcription factor activities

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Gene regulatory networks play essential roles in living organisms to control growth, keep internal metabolism running and respond to external environmental changes. Understanding the connections and the activity levels of regulators is important for the research of gene regulatory networks. While relevance score based algorithms that reconstruct gene regulatory networks from transcriptome data can infer genome-wide gene regulatory networks, they are unfortunately prone to false positive results. Transcription factor activities (TFAs) quantitatively reflect the ability of the transcription factor to regulate target genes. However, classic relevance score based gene regulatory network reconstruction algorithms use models do not include the TFA layer, thus missing a key regulatory element. Results This work integrates TFA prediction algorithms with relevance score based network reconstruction algorithms to reconstruct gene regulatory networks with improved accuracy over classic relevance score based algorithms. This method is called Gene expression and Transcription factor activity based Relevance Network (GTRNetwork). Different combinations of TFA prediction algorithms and relevance score functions have been applied to find the most efficient combination. When the integrated GTRNetwork method was applied to E. coli data, the reconstructed genome-wide gene regulatory network predicted 381 new regulatory links. This reconstructed gene regulatory network including the predicted new regulatory links show promising biological significances. Many of the new links are verified by known TF binding site information, and many other links can be verified from the literature and databases such as EcoCyc. The reconstructed gene regulatory network is applied to a recent transcriptome analysis of E. coli during isobutanol stress. In addition to the 16 significantly changed TFAs detected in the original paper, another 7 significantly changed TFAs have been detected by

  13. Gene regulatory network inference: evaluation and application to ovarian cancer allows the prioritization of drug targets

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Altered networks of gene regulation underlie many complex conditions, including cancer. Inferring gene regulatory networks from high-throughput microarray expression data is a fundamental but challenging task in computational systems biology and its translation to genomic medicine. Although diverse computational and statistical approaches have been brought to bear on the gene regulatory network inference problem, their relative strengths and disadvantages remain poorly understood, largely because comparative analyses usually consider only small subsets of methods, use only synthetic data, and/or fail to adopt a common measure of inference quality. Methods We report a comprehensive comparative evaluation of nine state-of-the art gene regulatory network inference methods encompassing the main algorithmic approaches (mutual information, correlation, partial correlation, random forests, support vector machines) using 38 simulated datasets and empirical serous papillary ovarian adenocarcinoma expression-microarray data. We then apply the best-performing method to infer normal and cancer networks. We assess the druggability of the proteins encoded by our predicted target genes using the CancerResource and PharmGKB webtools and databases. Results We observe large differences in the accuracy with which these methods predict the underlying gene regulatory network depending on features of the data, network size, topology, experiment type, and parameter settings. Applying the best-performing method (the supervised method SIRENE) to the serous papillary ovarian adenocarcinoma dataset, we infer and rank regulatory interactions, some previously reported and others novel. For selected novel interactions we propose testable mechanistic models linking gene regulation to cancer. Using network analysis and visualization, we uncover cross-regulation of angiogenesis-specific genes through three key transcription factors in normal and cancer conditions. Druggabilty analysis

  14. Dissecting neural differentiation regulatory networks through epigenetic footprinting

    PubMed Central

    Yaffe, Yakey; Donaghey, Julie; Pop, Ramona; Mallard, William; Issner, Robbyn; Gifford, Casey A.; Goren, Alon; Xing, Jeff; Gu, Hongcang; Cachiarelli, Davide; Tsankov, Alexander; Epstein, Chuck; Rinn, John R.; Mikkelsen, Tarjei S.; Kohlbacher, Oliver; Gnirke, Andreas; Bernstein, Bradley E.

    2014-01-01

    Human pluripotent stem cell derived models that accurately recapitulate neural development in vitro and allow for the generation of specific neuronal subtypes are of major interest to the stem cell and biomedical community. Notch signaling, particularly through the Notch effector HES5, is a major pathway critical for the onset and maintenance of neural progenitor cells (NPCs) in the embryonic and adult nervous system1-3. This can be exploited to isolate distinct populations of human embryonic stem (ES) cell derived NPCs4. Here, we report the transcriptional and epigenomic analysis of six consecutive stages derived from a HES5-GFP reporter ES cell line5 differentiated along the neural trajectory aimed at modeling key cell fate decisions including specification, expansion and patterning during the ontogeny of cortical neural stem and progenitor cells. In order to dissect the regulatory mechanisms that orchestrate the stage-specific differentiation process, we developed a computational framework to infer key regulators of each cell state transition based on the progressive remodeling of the epigenetic landscape and then validated these through a pooled shRNA screen. We were also able to refine our previous observations on epigenetic priming at transcription factor binding sites and show here that they are mediated by combinations of core and stage- specific factors. Taken together, we demonstrate the utility of our system and outline a general framework, not limited to the context of the neural lineage, to dissect regulatory circuits of differentiation. PMID:25533951

  15. Dissecting neural differentiation regulatory networks through epigenetic footprinting.

    PubMed

    Ziller, Michael J; Edri, Reuven; Yaffe, Yakey; Donaghey, Julie; Pop, Ramona; Mallard, William; Issner, Robbyn; Gifford, Casey A; Goren, Alon; Xing, Jeffrey; Gu, Hongcang; Cacchiarelli, Davide; Tsankov, Alexander M; Epstein, Charles; Rinn, John L; Mikkelsen, Tarjei S; Kohlbacher, Oliver; Gnirke, Andreas; Bernstein, Bradley E; Elkabetz, Yechiel; Meissner, Alexander

    2015-02-19

    Models derived from human pluripotent stem cells that accurately recapitulate neural development in vitro and allow for the generation of specific neuronal subtypes are of major interest to the stem cell and biomedical community. Notch signalling, particularly through the Notch effector HES5, is a major pathway critical for the onset and maintenance of neural progenitor cells in the embryonic and adult nervous system. Here we report the transcriptional and epigenomic analysis of six consecutive neural progenitor cell stages derived from a HES5::eGFP reporter human embryonic stem cell line. Using this system, we aimed to model cell-fate decisions including specification, expansion and patterning during the ontogeny of cortical neural stem and progenitor cells. In order to dissect regulatory mechanisms that orchestrate the stage-specific differentiation process, we developed a computational framework to infer key regulators of each cell-state transition based on the progressive remodelling of the epigenetic landscape and then validated these through a pooled short hairpin RNA screen. We were also able to refine our previous observations on epigenetic priming at transcription factor binding sites and suggest here that they are mediated by combinations of core and stage-specific factors. Taken together, we demonstrate the utility of our system and outline a general framework, not limited to the context of the neural lineage, to dissect regulatory circuits of differentiation.

  16. Dissecting the brown adipogenic regulatory network using integrative genomics

    PubMed Central

    Pradhan, Rachana N.; Bues, Johannes J.; Gardeux, Vincent; Schwalie, Petra C.; Alpern, Daniel; Chen, Wanze; Russeil, Julie; Raghav, Sunil K.; Deplancke, Bart

    2017-01-01

    Brown adipocytes regulate energy expenditure via mitochondrial uncoupling, which makes them attractive therapeutic targets to tackle obesity. However, the regulatory mechanisms underlying brown adipogenesis are still poorly understood. To address this, we profiled the transcriptome and chromatin state during mouse brown fat cell differentiation, revealing extensive gene expression changes and chromatin remodeling, especially during the first day post-differentiation. To identify putatively causal regulators, we performed transcription factor binding site overrepresentation analyses in active chromatin regions and prioritized factors based on their expression correlation with the bona-fide brown adipogenic marker Ucp1 across multiple mouse and human datasets. Using loss-of-function assays, we evaluated both the phenotypic effect as well as the transcriptomic impact of several putative regulators on the differentiation process, uncovering ZFP467, HOXA4 and Nuclear Factor I A (NFIA) as novel transcriptional regulators. Of these, NFIA emerged as the regulator yielding the strongest molecular and cellular phenotypes. To examine its regulatory function, we profiled the genomic localization of NFIA, identifying it as a key early regulator of terminal brown fat cell differentiation. PMID:28181539

  17. Intrinsic noise and deviations from criticality in Boolean gene-regulatory networks

    PubMed Central

    Villegas, Pablo; Ruiz-Franco, José; Hidalgo, Jorge; Muñoz, Miguel A.

    2016-01-01

    Gene regulatory networks can be successfully modeled as Boolean networks. A much discussed hypothesis says that such model networks reproduce empirical findings the best if they are tuned to operate at criticality, i.e. at the borderline between their ordered and disordered phases. Critical networks have been argued to lead to a number of functional advantages such as maximal dynamical range, maximal sensitivity to environmental changes, as well as to an excellent tradeoff between stability and flexibility. Here, we study the effect of noise within the context of Boolean networks trained to learn complex tasks under supervision. We verify that quasi-critical networks are the ones learning in the fastest possible way –even for asynchronous updating rules– and that the larger the task complexity the smaller the distance to criticality. On the other hand, when additional sources of intrinsic noise in the network states and/or in its wiring pattern are introduced, the optimally performing networks become clearly subcritical. These results suggest that in order to compensate for inherent stochasticity, regulatory and other type of biological networks might become subcritical rather than being critical, all the most if the task to be performed has limited complexity. PMID:27713479

  18. Intrinsic noise and deviations from criticality in Boolean gene-regulatory networks.

    PubMed

    Villegas, Pablo; Ruiz-Franco, José; Hidalgo, Jorge; Muñoz, Miguel A

    2016-10-07

    Gene regulatory networks can be successfully modeled as Boolean networks. A much discussed hypothesis says that such model networks reproduce empirical findings the best if they are tuned to operate at criticality, i.e. at the borderline between their ordered and disordered phases. Critical networks have been argued to lead to a number of functional advantages such as maximal dynamical range, maximal sensitivity to environmental changes, as well as to an excellent tradeoff between stability and flexibility. Here, we study the effect of noise within the context of Boolean networks trained to learn complex tasks under supervision. We verify that quasi-critical networks are the ones learning in the fastest possible way -even for asynchronous updating rules- and that the larger the task complexity the smaller the distance to criticality. On the other hand, when additional sources of intrinsic noise in the network states and/or in its wiring pattern are introduced, the optimally performing networks become clearly subcritical. These results suggest that in order to compensate for inherent stochasticity, regulatory and other type of biological networks might become subcritical rather than being critical, all the most if the task to be performed has limited complexity.

  19. Intrinsic noise and deviations from criticality in Boolean gene-regulatory networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Villegas, Pablo; Ruiz-Franco, José; Hidalgo, Jorge; Muñoz, Miguel A.

    2016-10-01

    Gene regulatory networks can be successfully modeled as Boolean networks. A much discussed hypothesis says that such model networks reproduce empirical findings the best if they are tuned to operate at criticality, i.e. at the borderline between their ordered and disordered phases. Critical networks have been argued to lead to a number of functional advantages such as maximal dynamical range, maximal sensitivity to environmental changes, as well as to an excellent tradeoff between stability and flexibility. Here, we study the effect of noise within the context of Boolean networks trained to learn complex tasks under supervision. We verify that quasi-critical networks are the ones learning in the fastest possible way –even for asynchronous updating rules– and that the larger the task complexity the smaller the distance to criticality. On the other hand, when additional sources of intrinsic noise in the network states and/or in its wiring pattern are introduced, the optimally performing networks become clearly subcritical. These results suggest that in order to compensate for inherent stochasticity, regulatory and other type of biological networks might become subcritical rather than being critical, all the most if the task to be performed has limited complexity.

  20. Regulatory gene networks that shape the development of adaptive phenotypic plasticity in a cichlid fish.

    PubMed

    Schneider, Ralf F; Li, Yuanhao; Meyer, Axel; Gunter, Helen M

    2014-09-01

    Phenotypic plasticity is the ability of organisms with a given genotype to develop different phenotypes according to environmental stimuli, resulting in individuals that are better adapted to local conditions. In spite of their ecological importance, the developmental regulatory networks underlying plastic phenotypes often remain uncharacterized. We examined the regulatory basis of diet-induced plasticity in the lower pharyngeal jaw (LPJ) of the cichlid fish Astatoreochromis alluaudi, a model species in the study of adaptive plasticity. Through raising juvenile A. alluaudi on either a hard or soft diet (hard-shelled or pulverized snails) for between 1 and 8 months, we gained insight into the temporal regulation of 19 previously identified candidate genes during the early stages of plasticity development. Plasticity in LPJ morphology was first detected between 3 and 5 months of diet treatment. The candidate genes, belonging to various functional categories, displayed dynamic expression patterns that consistently preceded the onset of morphological divergence and putatively contribute to the initiation of the plastic phenotypes. Within functional categories, we observed striking co-expression, and transcription factor binding site analysis was used to examine the prospective basis of their coregulation. We propose a regulatory network of LPJ plasticity in cichlids, presenting evidence for regulatory crosstalk between bone and muscle tissues, which putatively facilitates the development of this highly integrated trait. Through incorporating a developmental time-course into a phenotypic plasticity study, we have identified an interconnected, environmentally responsive regulatory network that shapes the development of plasticity in a key innovation of East African cichlids.

  1. DAX1 regulatory networks unveil conserved and potentially new functions.

    PubMed

    Martins, Rute S T; Power, Deborah M; Fuentes, Juan; Deloffre, Laurence A M; Canário, Adelino V M

    2013-11-01

    DAX1 is an orphan nuclear receptor with actions in mammalian sex determination, regulation of steroidogenesis, embryonic development and neural differentiation. Conserved patterns of DAX1 gene expression from mammals to fish have been taken to suggest conserved function. In the present study, the European sea bass, Dicentrarchus labrax, DAX1 promoter was isolated and its conserved features compared to other fish and mammalian DAX1 promoters in order to derive common regulators and functional gene networks. Fish and mammalian DAX1 promoters share common sets of transcription factor frameworks which were also present in the promoter region of another 127 genes. Pathway analysis clustered these into candidate gene networks associated with the fish and mammalian DAX1. The networks identified are concordant with described functions for DAX1 in embryogenesis, regulation of transcription, endocrine development and steroid production. Novel candidate gene network partners were also identified, which implicate DAX1 in ion homeostasis and transport, lipid transport and skeletal development. Experimental evidence is provided supporting roles for DAX1 in steroid signalling and osmoregulation in fish. These results highlight the usefulness of the in silico comparative approach to analyse gene regulation for hypothesis generation. Conserved promoter architecture can be used also to predict potentially new gene functions. The approach reported can be applied to genes from model and non-model species.

  2. Coding and non-coding gene regulatory networks underlie the immune response in liver cirrhosis

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Xueming; Huang, Yongming; Yang, Zhengpeng; Zhang, Yuguo; Zhang, Weihui; Gao, Zu-hua; Xue, Dongbo

    2017-01-01

    Liver cirrhosis is recognized as being the consequence of immune-mediated hepatocyte damage and repair processes. However, the regulation of these immune responses underlying liver cirrhosis has not been elucidated. In this study, we used GEO datasets and bioinformatics methods to established coding and non-coding gene regulatory networks including transcription factor-/lncRNA-microRNA-mRNA, and competing endogenous RNA interaction networks. Our results identified 2224 mRNAs, 70 lncRNAs and 46 microRNAs were differentially expressed in liver cirrhosis. The transcription factor -/lncRNA- microRNA-mRNA network we uncovered that results in immune-mediated liver cirrhosis is comprised of 5 core microRNAs (e.g., miR-203; miR-219-5p), 3 transcription factors (i.e., FOXP3, ETS1 and FOS) and 7 lncRNAs (e.g., ENTS00000671336, ENST00000575137). The competing endogenous RNA interaction network we identified includes a complex immune response regulatory subnetwork that controls the entire liver cirrhosis network. Additionally, we found 10 overlapping GO terms shared by both liver cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma including “immune response” as well. Interestingly, the overlapping differentially expressed genes in liver cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma were enriched in immune response-related functional terms. In summary, a complex gene regulatory network underlying immune response processes may play an important role in the development and progression of liver cirrhosis, and its development into hepatocellular carcinoma. PMID:28355233

  3. Characterization of the Neisseria gonorrhoeae Iron and Fur Regulatory Network

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Chunxiao; McClure, Ryan; Daou, Nadine

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT The Neisseria gonorrhoeae ferric uptake regulator (Fur) protein controls expression of iron homeostasis genes in response to intracellular iron levels. In this study, using transcriptome sequencing (RNA-seq) analysis of an N. gonorrhoeae fur strain, we defined the gonococcal Fur and iron regulons and characterized Fur-controlled expression of an ArsR-like DNA binding protein. We observed that 158 genes (8% of the genome) showed differential expression in response to iron in an N. gonorrhoeae wild-type or fur strain, while 54 genes exhibited differential expression in response to Fur. The Fur regulon was extended to additional regulators, including NrrF and 13 other small RNAs (sRNAs), and two transcriptional factors. One transcriptional factor, coding for an ArsR-like regulator (ArsR), exhibited increased expression under iron-replete conditions in the wild-type strain but showed decreased expression across iron conditions in the fur strain, an effect that was reversed in a fur-complemented strain. Fur was shown to bind to the promoter region of the arsR gene downstream of a predicted σ70 promoter region. Electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA) analysis confirmed binding of the ArsR protein to the norB promoter region, and sequence analysis identified two additional putative targets, NGO1411 and NGO1646. A gonococcal arsR strain demonstrated decreased survival in human endocervical epithelial cells compared to that of the wild-type and arsR-complemented strains, suggesting that the ArsR regulon includes genes required for survival in host cells. Collectively, these results demonstrate that the N. gonorrhoeae Fur functions as a global regulatory protein to repress or activate expression of a large repertoire of genes, including additional transcriptional regulatory proteins. IMPORTANCE Gene regulation in bacteria in response to environmental stimuli, including iron, is of paramount importance to both bacterial replication and, in the case of pathogenic

  4. Toward a complete in silico, multi-layered embryonic stem cell regulatory network

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Huilei; Schaniel, Christoph; Lemischka, Ihor R.; Ma’ayan, Avi

    2010-01-01

    Recent efforts in systematically profiling embryonic stem (ES) cells have yielded a wealth of high-throughput data. Complementarily, emerging databases and computational tools facilitate ES cell studies and further pave the way toward the in silico reconstruction of regulatory networks encompassing multiple molecular layers. Here, we briefly survey databases, algorithms, and software tools used to organize and analyze high-throughput experimental data collected to study mammalian cellular systems with a focus on ES cells. The vision of using heterogeneous data to reconstruct a complete multilayered ES cell regulatory network is discussed. This review also provides an accompanying manually extracted dataset of different types of regulatory interactions from low-throughput experimental ES cell studies available at http://amp.pharm.mssm.edu/iscmid/literature. PMID:20890967

  5. Regulatory Networks in Pollen Development under Cold Stress

    PubMed Central

    Sharma, Kamal D.; Nayyar, Harsh

    2016-01-01

    Cold stress modifies anthers’ metabolic pathways to induce pollen sterility. Cold-tolerant plants, unlike the susceptible ones, produce high proportion of viable pollen. Anthers in susceptible plants, when exposed to cold stress, increase abscisic acid (ABA) metabolism and reduce ABA catabolism. Increased ABA negatively regulates expression of tapetum cell wall bound invertase and monosaccharide transport genes resulting in distorted carbohydrate pool in anther. Cold-stress also reduces endogenous levels of the bioactive gibberellins (GAs), GA4 and GA7, in susceptible anthers by repression of the GA biosynthesis genes. Here, we discuss recent findings on mechanisms of cold susceptibility in anthers which determine pollen sterility. We also discuss differences in regulatory pathways between cold-stressed anthers of susceptible and tolerant plants that decide pollen sterility or viability. PMID:27066044

  6. Development of Bioinformatic and Experimental Technologies for Identification of Prokaryotic Regulatory Networks

    SciTech Connect

    Lawrence, Charles E; McCue, Lee Ann

    2008-07-31

    The transcription regulatory network is arguably the most important foundation of cellular function, since it exerts the most fundamental control over the abundance of virtually all of a cell’s functional macromolecules. The two major components of a prokaryotic cell’s transcription regulation network are the transcription factors (TFs) and the transcription factor binding sites (TFBS); these components are connected by the binding of TFs to their cognate TFBS under appropriate environmental conditions. Comparative genomics has proven to be a powerful bioinformatics method with which to study transcription regulation on a genome-wide level. We have further extended comparative genomics technologies that we introduced over the last several years. Specifically, we developed and applied statistical approaches to analysis of correlated sequence data (i.e., sequences from closely related species). We also combined these technologies with functional genomic, proteomic and sequence data from multiple species, and developed computational technologies that provide inferences on the regulatory network connections, identifying the cognate transcription factor for predicted regulatory sites. Arguably the most important contribution of this work emerged in the course of the project. Specifically, the development of novel procedures of estimation and prediction in discrete high-D settings has broad implications for biology, genomics and well beyond. We showed that these procedures enjoy advantages over existing technologies in the identification of TBFS. These efforts are aimed toward identifying a cell’s complete transcription regulatory network and underlying molecular mechanisms.

  7. Statistical inference and reverse engineering of gene regulatory networks from observational expression data.

    PubMed

    Emmert-Streib, Frank; Glazko, Galina V; Altay, Gökmen; de Matos Simoes, Ricardo

    2012-01-01

    In this paper, we present a systematic and conceptual overview of methods for inferring gene regulatory networks from observational gene expression data. Further, we discuss two classic approaches to infer causal structures and compare them with contemporary methods by providing a conceptual categorization thereof. We complement the above by surveying global and local evaluation measures for assessing the performance of inference algorithms.

  8. Identification and reconstitution of genetic regulatory networks for improved microbial tolerance to isooctane.

    PubMed

    Kang, Aram; Chang, Matthew Wook

    2012-04-01

    Microbial tolerance to hydrocarbons has been studied in an effort to improve the productivity of biochemical processes and to enhance the efficiency of hydrocarbon bioremediation. Despite these studies, few attempts have been made to design rational strategies to improve microbial tolerance to hydrocarbons. Herein, we present an engineering framework that enables us to harness our understanding of genetic regulatory networks to improve hydrocarbon tolerance. In this study, isooctane was used as a representative hydrocarbon due to its use in petroleum refining and in biochemical processes. To increase isooctane tolerance, we first identified essential transcriptional determinants and genetic regulatory networks underlying cellular responses to isooctane in Escherichia coli using genome-wide microarray analysis. Based on functional transcriptome and bioinformatics analysis, a range of combinations of transcription factors whose activity was predictably perturbed by isooctane were knocked out and overexpressed to reconstitute the regulatory networks. We demonstrated that the reconstitution of the regulatory networks led to a significant improvement in isooctane tolerance, and especially, engineered E. coli strains lacking and overexpressing some of the perturbed transcription factors showed 3- to 5-fold improvement. This microbe with high tolerance to isooctane can be harnessed for biochemical processes, fuel oil bioremediation and metabolic engineering for biofuel production. Furthermore, we envision that the engineering framework employed to improve the tolerance in this study can be exploited for developing other microbes with desired phenotypes.

  9. Multi-tissue omics analyses reveal molecular regulatory networks for puberty in composite beef cattle

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Puberty is a complex physiological event by which animals mature into an adult capable of sexual reproduction. In order to enhance our understanding of the genes and regulatory pathways and networks involved in puberty, we characterized the transcriptome of five reproductive tissues (i.e., hypothal...

  10. Bottom-up GGM algorithm for constructing multiple layered hierarchical gene regulatory networks

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Multilayered hierarchical gene regulatory networks (ML-hGRNs) are very important for understanding genetics regulation of biological pathways. However, there are currently no computational algorithms available for directly building ML-hGRNs that regulate biological pathways. A bottom-up graphic Gaus...

  11. Predicting gene regulatory networks of soybean nodulation from RNA-Seq transcriptome data

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background High-throughput RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq) is a revolutionary technique to study the transcriptome of a cell under various conditions at a systems level. Despite the wide application of RNA-Seq techniques to generate experimental data in the last few years, few computational methods are available to analyze this huge amount of transcription data. The computational methods for constructing gene regulatory networks from RNA-Seq expression data of hundreds or even thousands of genes are particularly lacking and urgently needed. Results We developed an automated bioinformatics method to predict gene regulatory networks from the quantitative expression values of differentially expressed genes based on RNA-Seq transcriptome data of a cell in different stages and conditions, integrating transcriptional, genomic and gene function data. We applied the method to the RNA-Seq transcriptome data generated for soybean root hair cells in three different development stages of nodulation after rhizobium infection. The method predicted a soybean nodulation-related gene regulatory network consisting of 10 regulatory modules common for all three stages, and 24, 49 and 70 modules separately for the first, second and third stage, each containing both a group of co-expressed genes and several transcription factors collaboratively controlling their expression under different conditions. 8 of 10 common regulatory modules were validated by at least two kinds of validations, such as independent DNA binding motif analysis, gene function enrichment test, and previous experimental data in the literature. Conclusions We developed a computational method to reliably reconstruct gene regulatory networks from RNA-Seq transcriptome data. The method can generate valuable hypotheses for interpreting biological data and designing biological experiments such as ChIP-Seq, RNA interference, and yeast two hybrid experiments. PMID:24053776

  12. Reverse engineering gene regulatory network from microarray data using linear time-variant model

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Gene regulatory network is an abstract mapping of gene regulations in living cells that can help to predict the system behavior of living organisms. Such prediction capability can potentially lead to the development of improved diagnostic tests and therapeutics. DNA microarrays, which measure the expression level of thousands of genes in parallel, constitute the numeric seed for the inference of gene regulatory networks. In this paper, we have proposed a new approach for inferring gene regulatory networks from time-series gene expression data using linear time-variant model. Here, Self-Adaptive Differential Evolution, a versatile and robust Evolutionary Algorithm, is used as the learning paradigm. Results To assess the potency of the proposed work, a well known nonlinear synthetic network has been used. The reconstruction method has inferred this synthetic network topology and the associated regulatory parameters with high accuracy from both the noise-free and noisy time-series data. For validation purposes, the proposed approach is also applied to the simulated expression dataset of cAMP oscillations in Dictyostelium discoideum and has proved it's strength in finding the correct regulations. The strength of this work has also been verified by analyzing the real expression dataset of SOS DNA repair system in Escherichia coli and it has succeeded in finding more correct and reasonable regulations as compared to various existing works. Conclusion By the proposed approach, the gene interaction networks have been inferred in an efficient manner from both the synthetic, simulated cAMP oscillation expression data and real expression data. The computational time of this approach is also considerably smaller, which makes it to be more suitable for larger network reconstruction. Thus the proposed approach can serve as an initiate for the future researches regarding the associated area. PMID:20122231

  13. Integration of metabolic and gene regulatory networks modulates the C. elegans dietary response.

    PubMed

    Watson, Emma; MacNeil, Lesley T; Arda, H Efsun; Zhu, Lihua Julie; Walhout, Albertha J M

    2013-03-28

    Expression profiles are tailored according to dietary input. However, the networks that control dietary responses remain largely uncharacterized. Here, we combine forward and reverse genetic screens to delineate a network of 184 genes that affect the C. elegans dietary response to Comamonas DA1877 bacteria. We find that perturbation of a mitochondrial network composed of enzymes involved in amino acid metabolism and the TCA cycle affects the dietary response. In humans, mutations in the corresponding genes cause inborn diseases of amino acid metabolism, most of which are treated by dietary intervention. We identify several transcription factors (TFs) that mediate the changes in gene expression upon metabolic network perturbations. Altogether, our findings unveil a transcriptional response system that is poised to sense dietary cues and metabolic imbalances, illustrating extensive communication between metabolic networks in the mitochondria and gene regulatory networks in the nucleus.

  14. DREM 2.0: Improved reconstruction of dynamic regulatory networks from time-series expression data

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Modeling dynamic regulatory networks is a major challenge since much of the protein-DNA interaction data available is static. The Dynamic Regulatory Events Miner (DREM) uses a Hidden Markov Model-based approach to integrate this static interaction data with time series gene expression leading to models that can determine when transcription factors (TFs) activate genes and what genes they regulate. DREM has been used successfully in diverse areas of biological research. However, several issues were not addressed by the original version. Results DREM 2.0 is a comprehensive software for reconstructing dynamic regulatory networks that supports interactive graphical or batch mode. With version 2.0 a set of new features that are unique in comparison with other softwares are introduced. First, we provide static interaction data for additional species. Second, DREM 2.0 now accepts continuous binding values and we added a new method to utilize TF expression levels when searching for dynamic models. Third, we added support for discriminative motif discovery, which is particularly powerful for species with limited experimental interaction data. Finally, we improved the visualization to support the new features. Combined, these changes improve the ability of DREM 2.0 to accurately recover dynamic regulatory networks and make it much easier to use it for analyzing such networks in several species with varying degrees of interaction information. Conclusions DREM 2.0 provides a unique framework for constructing and visualizing dynamic regulatory networks. DREM 2.0 can be downloaded from: www.sb.cs.cmu.edu/drem. PMID:22897824

  15. Cyanide binding to hexacoordinate cyanobacterial hemoglobins: hydrogen-bonding network and heme pocket rearrangement in ferric H117A Synechocystis hemoglobin.

    PubMed

    Vu, B Christie; Nothnagel, Henry J; Vuletich, David A; Falzone, Christopher J; Lecomte, Juliette T J

    2004-10-05

    The truncated hemoglobin (Hb) from the cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 is a bis-histidyl hexacoordinate complex in the absence of exogenous ligands. This protein can form a covalent cross-link between His117 in the H-helix and the heme 2-vinyl group. Cross-linking, the physiological importance of which has not been established, is avoided with the His117Ala substitution. In the present work, H117A Hb was used to explore exogenous ligand binding to the heme group. NMR and thermal denaturation data showed that the replacement was of little consequence to the structural and thermodynamic properties of ferric Synechocystis Hb. It did, however, decelerate the association of cyanide ions with the heme iron. Full complexation required hours, instead of minutes, of incubation at optical and NMR concentrations. At neutral pH and in the presence of excess cyanide, binding occurred with a first-order dependence on cyanide concentration, eliminating distal histidine decoordination as the rate-limiting step. The cyanide complex of the H117A variant was characterized for the conformational changes occurring as the histidine on the distal side, His46 (E10), was displaced. Extensive rearrangement allowed Tyr22 (B10) to insert in the heme pocket and Gln43 (E7) and Gln47 (E11) to come in contact with it. H-bond formation to the bound cyanide was identified in solution with the use of (1)H(2)O/(2)H(2)O mixtures. Cyanide binding also resulted in a change in the ratio of heme orientational isomers, in a likely manifestation of heme environment reshaping. Similar observations were made with the related Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 H117A Hb, except that cyanide binding was rapid in this protein. In both cases, the (15)N chemical shift of bound cyanide was reminiscent of that in peroxidases and the orientation of the proximal histidine was as in other truncated Hbs. The ensemble of the data provided insight into the structural cooperativity of the heme pocket scaffold and pointed

  16. Functional splicing network reveals extensive regulatory potential of the core spliceosomal machinery.

    PubMed

    Papasaikas, Panagiotis; Tejedor, J Ramón; Vigevani, Luisa; Valcárcel, Juan

    2015-01-08

    Pre-mRNA splicing relies on the poorly understood dynamic interplay between >150 protein components of the spliceosome. The steps at which splicing can be regulated remain largely unknown. We systematically analyzed the effect of knocking down the components of the splicing machinery on alternative splicing events relevant for cell proliferation and apoptosis and used this information to reconstruct a network of functional interactions. The network accurately captures known physical and functional associations and identifies new ones, revealing remarkable regulatory potential of core spliceosomal components, related to the order and duration of their recruitment during spliceosome assembly. In contrast with standard models of regulation at early steps of splice site recognition, factors involved in catalytic activation of the spliceosome display regulatory properties. The network also sheds light on the antagonism between hnRNP C and U2AF, and on targets of antitumor drugs, and can be widely used to identify mechanisms of splicing regulation.

  17. Reverse engineering of gene regulatory network using restricted gene expression programming.

    PubMed

    Yang, Bin; Liu, Sanrong; Zhang, Wei

    2016-10-01

    Inference of gene regulatory networks has been becoming a major area of interest in the field of systems biology over the past decade. In this paper, we present a novel representation of S-system model, named restricted gene expression programming (RGEP), to infer gene regulatory network. A new hybrid evolutionary algorithm based on structure-based evolutionary algorithm and cuckoo search (CS) is proposed to optimize the architecture and corresponding parameters of model, respectively. Two synthetic benchmark datasets and one real biological dataset from SOS DNA repair network in E. coli are used to test the validity of our method. Experimental results demonstrate that our proposed method performs better than previously proposed popular methods.

  18. Developmental gene regulatory networks in sea urchins and what we can learn from them

    PubMed Central

    Martik, Megan L.; Lyons, Deirdre C.; McClay, David R.

    2016-01-01

    Sea urchin embryos begin zygotic transcription shortly after the egg is fertilized.  Throughout the cleavage stages a series of transcription factors are activated and, along with signaling through a number of pathways, at least 15 different cell types are specified by the beginning of gastrulation.  Experimentally, perturbation of contributing transcription factors, signals and receptors and their molecular consequences enabled the assembly of an extensive gene regulatory network model.  That effort, pioneered and led by Eric Davidson and his laboratory, with many additional insights provided by other laboratories, provided the sea urchin community with a valuable resource.  Here we describe the approaches used to enable the assembly of an advanced gene regulatory network model describing molecular diversification during early development.  We then provide examples to show how a relatively advanced authenticated network can be used as a tool for discovery of how diverse developmental mechanisms are controlled and work. PMID:26962438

  19. Extended evolution: A conceptual framework for integrating regulatory networks and niche construction

    PubMed Central

    Renn, Jürgen

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT This paper introduces a conceptual framework for the evolution of complex systems based on the integration of regulatory network and niche construction theories. It is designed to apply equally to cases of biological, social and cultural evolution. Within the conceptual framework we focus especially on the transformation of complex networks through the linked processes of externalization and internalization of causal factors between regulatory networks and their corresponding niches and argue that these are an important part of evolutionary explanations. This conceptual framework extends previous evolutionary models and focuses on several challenges, such as the path‐dependent nature of evolutionary change, the dynamics of evolutionary innovation and the expansion of inheritance systems. J. Exp. Zool. (Mol. Dev. Evol.) 324B: 565–577, 2015. © 2015 The Authors. Journal of Experimental Zoology Part B: Molecular and Developmental Evolution published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26097188

  20. Information theory in systems biology. Part I: Gene regulatory and metabolic networks.

    PubMed

    Mousavian, Zaynab; Kavousi, Kaveh; Masoudi-Nejad, Ali

    2016-03-01

    "A Mathematical Theory of Communication", was published in 1948 by Claude Shannon to establish a framework that is now known as information theory. In recent decades, information theory has gained much attention in the area of systems biology. The aim of this paper is to provide a systematic review of those contributions that have applied information theory in inferring or understanding of biological systems. Based on the type of system components and the interactions between them, we classify the biological systems into 4 main classes: gene regulatory, metabolic, protein-protein interaction and signaling networks. In the first part of this review, we attempt to introduce most of the existing studies on two types of biological networks, including gene regulatory and metabolic networks, which are founded on the concepts of information theory.

  1. Targeting Immune Regulatory Networks to Counteract Immune Suppression in Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Camisaschi, Chiara; Vallacchi, Viviana; Vergani, Elisabetta; Tazzari, Marcella; Ferro, Simona; Tuccitto, Alessandra; Kuchuk, Olga; Shahaj, Eriomina; Sulsenti, Roberta; Castelli, Chiara; Rodolfo, Monica; Rivoltini, Licia; Huber, Veronica

    2016-01-01

    The onset of cancer is unavoidably accompanied by suppression of antitumor immunity. This occurs through mechanisms ranging from the progressive accumulation of regulatory immune cells associated with chronic immune stimulation and inflammation, to the expression of immunosuppressive molecules. Some of them are being successfully exploited as therapeutic targets, with impressive clinical results achieved in patients, as in the case of immune checkpoint inhibitors. To limit immune attack, tumor cells exploit specific pathways to render the tumor microenvironment hostile for antitumor effector cells. Local acidification might, in fact, anergize activated T cells and facilitate the accumulation of immune suppressive cells. Moreover, the release of extracellular vesicles by tumor cells can condition distant immune sites contributing to the onset of systemic immune suppression. Understanding which mechanisms may be prevalent in specific cancers or disease stages, and identifying possible strategies to counterbalance would majorly contribute to improving clinical efficacy of cancer immunotherapy. Here, we intend to highlight these mechanisms, how they could be targeted and the tools that might be available in the near future to achieve this goal. PMID:27827921

  2. Targeting Immune Regulatory Networks to Counteract Immune Suppression in Cancer.

    PubMed

    Camisaschi, Chiara; Vallacchi, Viviana; Vergani, Elisabetta; Tazzari, Marcella; Ferro, Simona; Tuccitto, Alessandra; Kuchuk, Olga; Shahaj, Eriomina; Sulsenti, Roberta; Castelli, Chiara; Rodolfo, Monica; Rivoltini, Licia; Huber, Veronica

    2016-11-04

    The onset of cancer is unavoidably accompanied by suppression of antitumor immunity. This occurs through mechanisms ranging from the progressive accumulation of regulatory immune cells associated with chronic immune stimulation and inflammation, to the expression of immunosuppressive molecules. Some of them are being successfully exploited as therapeutic targets, with impressive clinical results achieved in patients, as in the case of immune checkpoint inhibitors. To limit immune attack, tumor cells exploit specific pathways to render the tumor microenvironment hostile for antitumor effector cells. Local acidification might, in fact, anergize activated T cells and facilitate the accumulation of immune suppressive cells. Moreover, the release of extracellular vesicles by tumor cells can condition distant immune sites contributing to the onset of systemic immune suppression. Understanding which mechanisms may be prevalent in specific cancers or disease stages, and identifying possible strategies to counterbalance would majorly contribute to improving clinical efficacy of cancer immunotherapy. Here, we intend to highlight these mechanisms, how they could be targeted and the tools that might be available in the near future to achieve this goal.

  3. The Pho regulon: a huge regulatory network in bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Santos-Beneit, Fernando

    2015-01-01

    One of the most important achievements of bacteria is its capability to adapt to the changing conditions of the environment. The competition for nutrients with other microorganisms, especially in the soil, where nutritional conditions are more variable, has led bacteria to evolve a plethora of mechanisms to rapidly fine-tune the requirements of the cell. One of the essential nutrients that are normally found in low concentrations in nature is inorganic phosphate (Pi). Bacteria, as well as other organisms, have developed several systems to cope for the scarcity of this nutrient. To date, the unique mechanism responding to Pi starvation known in detail is the Pho regulon, which is normally controlled by a two component system and constitutes one of the most sensible and efficient regulatory mechanisms in bacteria. Many new members of the Pho regulon have emerged in the last years in several bacteria; however, there are still many unknown questions regarding the activation and function of the whole system. This review describes the most important findings of the last three decades in relation to Pi regulation in bacteria, including: the PHO box, the Pi signaling pathway and the Pi starvation response. The role of the Pho regulon in nutritional regulation cross-talk, secondary metabolite production, and pathogenesis is discussed in detail. PMID:25983732

  4. Unraveling gene regulatory networks from time-resolved gene expression data -- a measures comparison study

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Inferring regulatory interactions between genes from transcriptomics time-resolved data, yielding reverse engineered gene regulatory networks, is of paramount importance to systems biology and bioinformatics studies. Accurate methods to address this problem can ultimately provide a deeper insight into the complexity, behavior, and functions of the underlying biological systems. However, the large number of interacting genes coupled with short and often noisy time-resolved read-outs of the system renders the reverse engineering a challenging task. Therefore, the development and assessment of methods which are computationally efficient, robust against noise, applicable to short time series data, and preferably capable of reconstructing the directionality of the regulatory interactions remains a pressing research problem with valuable applications. Results Here we perform the largest systematic analysis of a set of similarity measures and scoring schemes within the scope of the relevance network approach which are commonly used for gene regulatory network reconstruction from time series data. In addition, we define and analyze several novel measures and schemes which are particularly suitable for short transcriptomics time series. We also compare the considered 21 measures and 6 scoring schemes according to their ability to correctly reconstruct such networks from short time series data by calculating summary statistics based on the corresponding specificity and sensitivity. Our results demonstrate that rank and symbol based measures have the highest performance in inferring regulatory interactions. In addition, the proposed scoring scheme by asymmetric weighting has shown to be valuable in reducing the number of false positive interactions. On the other hand, Granger causality as well as information-theoretic measures, frequently used in inference of regulatory networks, show low performance on the short time series analyzed in this study. Conclusions Our

  5. Gene Regulatory Network Reconstruction Using Bayesian Networks, the Dantzig Selector, the Lasso and Their Meta-Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Vignes, Matthieu; Vandel, Jimmy; Allouche, David; Ramadan-Alban, Nidal; Cierco-Ayrolles, Christine; Schiex, Thomas; Mangin, Brigitte; de Givry, Simon

    2011-01-01

    Modern technologies and especially next generation sequencing facilities are giving a cheaper access to genotype and genomic data measured on the same sample at once. This creates an ideal situation for multifactorial experiments designed to infer gene regulatory networks. The fifth “Dialogue for Reverse Engineering Assessments and Methods” (DREAM5) challenges are aimed at assessing methods and associated algorithms devoted to the inference of biological networks. Challenge 3 on “Systems Genetics” proposed to infer causal gene regulatory networks from different genetical genomics data sets. We investigated a wide panel of methods ranging from Bayesian networks to penalised linear regressions to analyse such data, and proposed a simple yet very powerful meta-analysis, which combines these inference methods. We present results of the Challenge as well as more in-depth analysis of predicted networks in terms of structure and reliability. The developed meta-analysis was ranked first among the teams participating in Challenge 3A. It paves the way for future extensions of our inference method and more accurate gene network estimates in the context of genetical genomics. PMID:22216195

  6. MicroRNA regulatory networks in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.

    PubMed

    Pandit, Kusum V; Milosevic, Jadranka

    2015-04-01

    Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is a chronic, progressive, and fatal scarring lung disease of unknown etiology, characterized by changes in microRNA expression. Activation of transforming growth factor (TGF-β) is a key event in the development of IPF. Recent reports have also identified epigenetic modification as an important player in the pathogenesis of IPF. In this review, we summarize the main results of studies that address the role of microRNAs in IPF and highlight the synergistic actions of these microRNAs in regulating TGF-β, the primary fibrogenic mediator. We outline epigenetic regulation of microRNAs by methylation. Functional studies identify microRNAs that alter proliferative and migratory properties of fibroblasts, and induce phenotypic changes in epithelial cells consistent with epithelial-mesenchymal transition. Though these studies were performed in isolation, we identify multiple co-operative actions after assembling the results into a network. Construction of such networks will help identify disease-propelling hubs that can be targeted for therapeutic purposes.

  7. Initial deployment of the cardiogenic gene regulatory network in the basal chordate, Ciona intestinalis.

    PubMed

    Woznica, Arielle; Haeussler, Maximilian; Starobinska, Ella; Jemmett, Jessica; Li, Younan; Mount, David; Davidson, Brad

    2012-08-01

    The complex, partially redundant gene regulatory architecture underlying vertebrate heart formation has been difficult to characterize. Here, we dissect the primary cardiac gene regulatory network in the invertebrate chordate, Ciona intestinalis. The Ciona heart progenitor lineage is first specified by Fibroblast Growth Factor/Map Kinase (FGF/MapK) activation of the transcription factor Ets1/2 (Ets). Through microarray analysis of sorted heart progenitor cells, we identified the complete set of primary genes upregulated by FGF/Ets shortly after heart progenitor emergence. Combinatorial sequence analysis of these co-regulated genes generated a hypothetical regulatory code consisting of Ets binding sites associated with a specific co-motif, ATTA. Through extensive reporter analysis, we confirmed the functional importance of the ATTA co-motif in primary heart progenitor gene regulation. We then used the Ets/ATTA combination motif to successfully predict a number of additional heart progenitor gene regulatory elements, including an intronic element driving expression of the core conserved cardiac transcription factor, GATAa. This work significantly advances our understanding of the Ciona heart gene network. Furthermore, this work has begun to elucidate the precise regulatory architecture underlying the conserved, primary role of FGF/Ets in chordate heart lineage specification.

  8. Transcriptional regulatory networks in Arabidopsis thaliana during single and combined stresses

    PubMed Central

    Barah, Pankaj; B N, Mahantesha Naika; Jayavelu, Naresh Doni; Sowdhamini, Ramanathan; Shameer, Khader; Bones, Atle M.

    2016-01-01

    Differentially evolved responses to various stress conditions in plants are controlled by complex regulatory circuits of transcriptional activators, and repressors, such as transcription factors (TFs). To understand the general and condition-specific activities of the TFs and their regulatory relationships with the target genes (TGs), we have used a homogeneous stress gene expression dataset generated on ten natural ecotypes of the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana, during five single and six combined stress conditions. Knowledge-based profiles of binding sites for 25 stress-responsive TF families (187 TFs) were generated and tested for their enrichment in the regulatory regions of the associated TGs. Condition-dependent regulatory sub-networks have shed light on the differential utilization of the underlying network topology, by stress-specific regulators and multifunctional regulators. The multifunctional regulators maintain the core stress response processes while the transient regulators confer the specificity to certain conditions. Clustering patterns of transcription factor binding sites (TFBS) have reflected the combinatorial nature of transcriptional regulation, and suggested the putative role of the homotypic clusters of TFBS towards maintaining transcriptional robustness against cis-regulatory mutations to facilitate the preservation of stress response processes. The Gene Ontology enrichment analysis of the TGs reflected sequential regulation of stress response mechanisms in plants. PMID:26681689

  9. Information theoretical methods to deconvolute genetic regulatory networks applied to thyroid neoplasms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hernández-Lemus, Enrique; Velázquez-Fernández, David; Estrada-Gil, Jesús K.; Silva-Zolezzi, Irma; Herrera-Hernández, Miguel F.; Jiménez-Sánchez, Gerardo

    2009-12-01

    Most common pathologies in humans are not caused by the mutation of a single gene, rather they are complex diseases that arise due to the dynamic interaction of many genes and environmental factors. This plethora of interacting genes generates a complexity landscape that masks the real effects associated with the disease. To construct dynamic maps of gene interactions (also called genetic regulatory networks) we need to understand the interplay between thousands of genes. Several issues arise in the analysis of experimental data related to gene function: on the one hand, the nature of measurement processes generates highly noisy signals; on the other hand, there are far more variables involved (number of genes and interactions among them) than experimental samples. Another source of complexity is the highly nonlinear character of the underlying biochemical dynamics. To overcome some of these limitations, we generated an optimized method based on the implementation of a Maximum Entropy Formalism (MaxEnt) to deconvolute a genetic regulatory network based on the most probable meta-distribution of gene-gene interactions. We tested the methodology using experimental data for Papillary Thyroid Cancer (PTC) and Thyroid Goiter tissue samples. The optimal MaxEnt regulatory network was obtained from a pool of 25,593,993 different probability distributions. The group of observed interactions was validated by several (mostly in silico) means and sources. For the associated Papillary Thyroid Cancer Gene Regulatory Network (PTC-GRN) the majority of the nodes (genes) have very few links (interactions) whereas a small number of nodes are highly connected. PTC-GRN is also characterized by high clustering coefficients and network heterogeneity. These properties have been recognized as characteristic of topological robustness, and they have been largely described in relation to biological networks. A number of biological validity outcomes are discussed with regard to both the

  10. NetDiff - Bayesian model selection for differential gene regulatory network inference.

    PubMed

    Thorne, Thomas

    2016-12-16

    Differential networks allow us to better understand the changes in cellular processes that are exhibited in conditions of interest, identifying variations in gene regulation or protein interaction between, for example, cases and controls, or in response to external stimuli. Here we present a novel methodology for the inference of differential gene regulatory networks from gene expression microarray data. Specifically we apply a Bayesian model selection approach to compare models of conserved and varying network structure, and use Gaussian graphical models to represent the network structures. We apply a variational inference approach to the learning of Gaussian graphical models of gene regulatory networks, that enables us to perform Bayesian model selection that is significantly more computationally efficient than Markov Chain Monte Carlo approaches. Our method is demonstrated to be more robust than independent analysis of data from multiple conditions when applied to synthetic network data, generating fewer false positive predictions of differential edges. We demonstrate the utility of our approach on real world gene expression microarray data by applying it to existing data from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis cases with and without mutations in C9orf72, and controls, where we are able to identify differential network interactions for further investigation.

  11. NetDiff – Bayesian model selection for differential gene regulatory network inference

    PubMed Central

    Thorne, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    Differential networks allow us to better understand the changes in cellular processes that are exhibited in conditions of interest, identifying variations in gene regulation or protein interaction between, for example, cases and controls, or in response to external stimuli. Here we present a novel methodology for the inference of differential gene regulatory networks from gene expression microarray data. Specifically we apply a Bayesian model selection approach to compare models of conserved and varying network structure, and use Gaussian graphical models to represent the network structures. We apply a variational inference approach to the learning of Gaussian graphical models of gene regulatory networks, that enables us to perform Bayesian model selection that is significantly more computationally efficient than Markov Chain Monte Carlo approaches. Our method is demonstrated to be more robust than independent analysis of data from multiple conditions when applied to synthetic network data, generating fewer false positive predictions of differential edges. We demonstrate the utility of our approach on real world gene expression microarray data by applying it to existing data from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis cases with and without mutations in C9orf72, and controls, where we are able to identify differential network interactions for further investigation. PMID:27982083

  12. Regulatory network analysis of microRNAs and genes in imatinib-resistant chronic myeloid leukemia.

    PubMed

    Soltani, Ismael; Gharbi, Hanen; Hassine, Islem Ben; Bouguerra, Ghada; Douzi, Kais; Teber, Mouheb; Abbes, Salem; Menif, Samia

    2016-09-16

    Targeted therapy in the form of selective breakpoint cluster region-abelson (BCR/ABL) tyrosine kinase inhibitor (imatinib mesylate) has successfully been introduced in the treatment of the chronic myeloid leukemia (CML). However, acquired resistance against imatinib mesylate (IM) has been reported in nearly half of patients and has been recognized as major issue in clinical practice. Multiple resistance genes and microRNAs (miRNAs) are thought to be involved in the IM resistance process. These resistance genes and miRNAs tend to interact with each other through a regulatory network. Therefore, it is crucial to study the impact of these interactions in the IM resistance process. The present study focused on miRNA and gene network analysis in order to elucidate the role of interacting elements and to understand their functional contribution in therapeutic failure. Unlike previous studies which were centered only on genes or miRNAs, the prime focus of the present study was on relationships. To this end, three regulatory networks including differentially expressed, related, and global networks were constructed and analyzed in search of similarities and differences. Regulatory associations between miRNAs and their target genes, transcription factors and miRNAs, as well as miRNAs and their host genes were also macroscopically investigated. Certain key pathways in the three networks, especially in the differentially expressed network, were featured. The differentially expressed network emerged as a fault map of IM-resistant CML. Theoretically, the IM resistance process could be prevented by correcting the included errors. The present network-based approach to study resistance miRNAs and genes might help in understanding the molecular mechanisms of IM resistance in CML as well as in the improvement of CML therapy.

  13. Recurrent neural network for non-smooth convex optimization problems with application to the identification of genetic regulatory networks.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Long; Hou, Zeng-Guang; Lin, Yingzi; Tan, Min; Zhang, Wenjun Chris; Wu, Fang-Xiang

    2011-05-01

    A recurrent neural network is proposed for solving the non-smooth convex optimization problem with the convex inequality and linear equality constraints. Since the objective function and inequality constraints may not be smooth, the Clarke's generalized gradients of the objective function and inequality constraints are employed to describe the dynamics of the proposed neural network. It is proved that the equilibrium point set of the proposed neural network is equivalent to the optimal solution of the original optimization problem by using the Lagrangian saddle-point theorem. Under weak conditions, the proposed neural network is proved to be stable, and the state of the neural network is convergent to one of its equilibrium points. Compared with the existing neural network models for non-smooth optimization problems, the proposed neural network can deal with a larger class of constraints and is not based on the penalty method. Finally, the proposed neural network is used to solve the identification problem of genetic regulatory networks, which can be transformed into a non-smooth convex optimization problem. The simulation results show the satisfactory identification accuracy, which demonstrates the effectiveness and efficiency of the proposed approach.

  14. Expanding the Regulatory Network for Meristem Size in Plants.

    PubMed

    Galli, Mary; Gallavotti, Andrea

    2016-06-01

    The remarkable plasticity of post-embryonic plant development is due to groups of stem-cell-containing structures called meristems. In the shoot, meristems continuously produce organs such as leaves, flowers, and stems. Nearly two decades ago the WUSCHEL/CLAVATA (WUS/CLV) negative feedback loop was established as being essential for regulating the size of shoot meristems by maintaining a delicate balance between stem cell proliferation and cell recruitment for the differentiation of lateral primordia. Recent research in various model species (Arabidopsis, tomato, maize, and rice) has led to discoveries of additional components that further refine and improve the current model of meristem regulation, adding new complexity to a vital network for plant growth and productivity.

  15. Intergenic GWAS SNPs are key components of the spatial and regulatory network for human growth.

    PubMed

    Schierding, William; Antony, Jisha; Cutfield, Wayne S; Horsfield, Julia A; O'Sullivan, Justin M

    2016-08-01

    Meta-analysis of genome-wide association studies has resulted in the identification of hundreds of genetic variants associated with growth and stature. Determining how these genetic variants influence growth is important, but most are non-coding, and there is little understanding of how these variants contribute to adult height. To determine the mechanisms by which human variation contributes to growth, we combined spatial genomic connectivity (high-throughput conformation capture) with functional (gene expression, expression Quantitative Trait Loci) data to determine how non-genic loci associated with infant length, pubertal and adult height and contribute to gene regulatory networks. This approach identified intergenic single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) ∼85 kb upstream of FBXW11 that spatially connect with distant loci. These regulatory connections are reinforced by evidence of SNP-enhancer effects and altered expression in genes influencing the action of human growth hormone. Functional assays provided evidence for enhancer activity of the intergenic region near FBXW11 that harbors SNP rs12153391, which is associated with an expression Quantitative Trait Loci. Our results suggest that variants in this locus have genome-wide effects as key modifiers of growth (both overgrowth and short stature) acting through a regulatory network. We believe that the genes and pathways connected with this regulatory network are potential targets that could be investigated for diagnostic, prenatal and carrier testing for growth disorders. Finally, the regulatory networks we generated illustrate the power of using existing datasets to interrogate the contribution of intergenic SNPs to common syndromes/diseases.

  16. Identification of regulatory network hubs that control lipid metabolism in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii

    DOE PAGES

    Gargouri, Mahmoud; Park, Jeong -Jin; Holguin, F. Omar; ...

    2015-05-28

    Microalgae-based biofuels are promising sources of alternative energy, but improvements throughout the production process are required to establish them as economically feasible. One of the most influential improvements would be a significant increase in lipid yields, which could be achieved by altering the regulation of lipid biosynthesis and accumulation. Chlamydomonas reinhardtii accumulates oil (triacylglycerols, TAG) in response to nitrogen (N) deprivation. Although a few important regulatory genes have been identified that are involved in controlling this process, a global understanding of the larger regulatory network has not been developed. In order to uncover this network in this species, a combinedmore » omics (transcriptomic, proteomic and metabolomic) analysis was applied to cells grown in a time course experiment after a shift from N-replete to N-depleted conditions. Changes in transcript and protein levels of 414 predicted transcription factors (TFs) and transcriptional regulators (TRs) were monitored relative to other genes. The TF and TR genes were thus classified by two separate measures: up-regulated versus down-regulated and early response versus late response relative to two phases of polar lipid synthesis (before and after TAG biosynthesis initiation). Lipidomic and primary metabolite profiling generated compound accumulation levels that were integrated with the transcript dataset and TF profiling to produce a transcriptional regulatory network. In conclusion, evaluation of this proposed regulatory network led to the identification of several regulatory hubs that control many aspects of cellular metabolism, from N assimilation and metabolism, to central metabolism, photosynthesis and lipid metabolism.« less

  17. Experimental approaches for gene regulatory network construction: the chick as a model system

    PubMed Central

    Streit, Andrea; Tambalo, Monica; Chen, Jingchen; Grocott, Timothy; Anwar, Maryam; Sosinsky, Alona; Stern, Claudio D.

    2012-01-01

    Setting up the body plan during embryonic development requires the coordinated action of many signals and transcriptional regulators in a precise temporal sequence and spatial pattern. The last decades have seen an explosion of information describing the molecular control of many developmental processes. The next challenge is to integrate this information into logic ‘wiring diagrams’ that visualise gene actions and outputs, have predictive power and point to key control nodes. Here we provide an experimental workflow on how to construct gene regulatory networks using the chick as model system. Keywords: transcription factors, transcriptome analysis, conserved regulatory elements PMID:23174848

  18. Reverse engineering gene regulatory networks related to quorum sensing in the plant pathogen Pectobacterium atrosepticum.

    PubMed

    Lin, Kuang; Husmeier, Dirk; Dondelinger, Frank; Mayer, Claus D; Liu, Hui; Prichard, Leighton; Salmond, George P C; Toth, Ian K; Birch, Paul R J

    2010-01-01

    The objective of the project reported in the present chapter was the reverse engineering of gene regulatory networks related to quorum sensing in the plant pathogen Pectobacterium atrosepticum from micorarray gene expression profiles, obtained from the wild-type and eight knockout strains. To this end, we have applied various recent methods from multivariate statistics and machine learning: graphical Gaussian models, sparse Bayesian regression, LASSO (least absolute shrinkage and selection operator), Bayesian networks, and nested effects models. We have investigated the degree of similarity between the predictions obtained with the different approaches, and we have assessed the consistency of the reconstructed networks in terms of global topological network properties, based on the node degree distribution. The chapter concludes with a biological evaluation of the predicted network structures.

  19. The Transcriptional and Gene Regulatory Network of Lactococcus lactis MG1363 during Growth in Milk

    PubMed Central

    de Jong, Anne; Hansen, Morten E.; Kuipers, Oscar P.; Kilstrup, Mogens; Kok, Jan

    2013-01-01

    In the present study we examine the changes in the expression of genes of Lactococcus lactis subspecies cremoris MG1363 during growth in milk. To reveal which specific classes of genes (pathways, operons, regulons, COGs) are important, we performed a transcriptome time series experiment. Global analysis of gene expression over time showed that L. lactis adapted quickly to the environmental changes. Using upstream sequences of genes with correlated gene expression profiles, we uncovered a substantial number of putative DNA binding motifs that may be relevant for L. lactis fermentative growth in milk. All available novel and literature-derived data were integrated into network reconstruction building blocks, which were used to reconstruct and visualize the L. lactis gene regulatory network. This network enables easy mining in the chrono-transcriptomics data. A freely available website at http://milkts.molgenrug.nl gives full access to all transcriptome data, to the reconstructed network and to the individual network building blocks. PMID:23349698

  20. The impact of gene expression variation on the robustness and evolvability of a developmental gene regulatory network.

    PubMed

    Garfield, David A; Runcie, Daniel E; Babbitt, Courtney C; Haygood, Ralph; Nielsen, William J; Wray, Gregory A

    2013-10-01

    Regulatory interactions buffer development against genetic and environmental perturbations, but adaptation requires phenotypes to change. We investigated the relationship between robustness and evolvability within the gene regulatory network underlying development of the larval skeleton in the sea urchin Strongylocentrotus purpuratus. We find extensive variation in gene expression in this network throughout development in a natural population, some of which has a heritable genetic basis. Switch-like regulatory interactions predominate during early development, buffer expression variation, and may promote the accumulation of cryptic genetic variation affecting early stages. Regulatory interactions during later development are typically more sensitive (linear), allowing variation in expression to affect downstream target genes. Variation in skeletal morphology is associated primarily with expression variation of a few, primarily structural, genes at terminal positions within the network. These results indicate that the position and properties of gene interactions within a network can have important evolutionary consequences independent of their immediate regulatory role.

  1. Insights into the organization of biochemical regulatory networks using graph theory analyses.

    PubMed

    Ma'ayan, Avi

    2009-02-27

    Graph theory has been a valuable mathematical modeling tool to gain insights into the topological organization of biochemical networks. There are two types of insights that may be obtained by graph theory analyses. The first provides an overview of the global organization of biochemical networks; the second uses prior knowledge to place results from multivariate experiments, such as microarray data sets, in the context of known pathways and networks to infer regulation. Using graph analyses, biochemical networks are found to be scale-free and small-world, indicating that these networks contain hubs, which are proteins that interact with many other molecules. These hubs may interact with many different types of proteins at the same time and location or at different times and locations, resulting in diverse biological responses. Groups of components in networks are organized in recurring patterns termed network motifs such as feedback and feed-forward loops. Graph analysis revealed that negative feedback loops are less common and are present mostly in proximity to the membrane, whereas positive feedback loops are highly nested in an architecture that promotes dynamical stability. Cell signaling networks have multiple pathways from some input receptors and few from others. Such topology is reminiscent of a classification system. Signaling networks display a bow-tie structure indicative of funneling information from extracellular signals and then dispatching information from a few specific central intracellular signaling nexuses. These insights show that graph theory is a valuable tool for gaining an understanding of global regulatory features of biochemical networks.

  2. Decoding regulatory landscape of somatic embryogenesis reveals differential regulatory networks between japonica and indica rice subspecies.

    PubMed

    Indoliya, Yuvraj; Tiwari, Poonam; Chauhan, Abhisekh Singh; Goel, Ridhi; Shri, Manju; Bag, Sumit Kumar; Chakrabarty, Debasis

    2016-03-14

    Somatic embryogenesis is a unique process in plants and has considerable interest for biotechnological application. Compare to japonica, indica rice has been less responsive to in vitro culture. We used Illumina Hiseq 2000 sequencing platform for comparative transcriptome analysis between two rice subspecies at six different developmental stages combined with a tag-based digital gene expression profiling. Global gene expression among different samples showed greater complexity in japonica rice compared to indica which may be due to polyphyletic origin of two rice subspecies. Expression pattern in initial stage indicate major differences in proembryogenic callus induction phase that may serve as key regulator to observe differences between both subspecies. Our data suggests that phytohormone signaling pathways consist of elaborate networks with frequent crosstalk, thereby allowing plants to regulate somatic embryogenesis pathway. However, this crosstalk varies between the two rice subspecies. Down regulation of positive regulators of meristem development (i.e. KNOX, OsARF5) and up regulation of its counterparts (OsRRs, MYB, GA20ox1/GA3ox2) in japonica may be responsible for its better regeneration and differentiation of somatic embryos. Comprehensive gene expression information in the present experiment may also facilitate to understand the monocot specific meristem regulation for dedifferentiation of somatic cell to embryogenic cells.

  3. Decoding regulatory landscape of somatic embryogenesis reveals differential regulatory networks between japonica and indica rice subspecies

    PubMed Central

    Indoliya, Yuvraj; Tiwari, Poonam; Chauhan, Abhisekh Singh; Goel, Ridhi; Shri, Manju; Bag, Sumit Kumar; Chakrabarty, Debasis

    2016-01-01

    Somatic embryogenesis is a unique process in plants and has considerable interest for biotechnological application. Compare to japonica, indica rice has been less responsive to in vitro culture. We used Illumina Hiseq 2000 sequencing platform for comparative transcriptome analysis between two rice subspecies at six different developmental stages combined with a tag-based digital gene expression profiling. Global gene expression among different samples showed greater complexity in japonica rice compared to indica which may be due to polyphyletic origin of two rice subspecies. Expression pattern in initial stage indicate major differences in proembryogenic callus induction phase that may serve as key regulator to observe differences between both subspecies. Our data suggests that phytohormone signaling pathways consist of elaborate networks with frequent crosstalk, thereby allowing plants to regulate somatic embryogenesis pathway. However, this crosstalk varies between the two rice subspecies. Down regulation of positive regulators of meristem development (i.e. KNOX, OsARF5) and up regulation of its counterparts (OsRRs, MYB, GA20ox1/GA3ox2) in japonica may be responsible for its better regeneration and differentiation of somatic embryos. Comprehensive gene expression information in the present experiment may also facilitate to understand the monocot specific meristem regulation for dedifferentiation of somatic cell to embryogenic cells. PMID:26973288

  4. Comparing genomes to computer operating systems in terms of the topology and evolution of their regulatory control networks.

    PubMed

    Yan, Koon-Kiu; Fang, Gang; Bhardwaj, Nitin; Alexander, Roger P; Gerstein, Mark

    2010-05-18

    The genome has often been called the operating system (OS) for a living organism. A computer OS is described by a regulatory control network termed the call graph, which is analogous to the transcriptional regulatory network in a cell. To apply our firsthand knowledge of the architecture of software systems to understand cellular design principles, we present a comparison between the transcriptional regulatory network of a well-studied bacterium (Escherichia coli) and the call graph of a canonical OS (Linux) in terms of topology and evolution. We show that both networks have a fundamentally hierarchical layout, but there is a key difference: The transcriptional regulatory network possesses a few global regulators at the top and many targets at the bottom; conversely, the call graph has many regulators controlling a small set of generic functions. This top-heavy organization leads to highly overlapping functional modules in the call graph, in contrast to the relatively independent modules in the regulatory network. We further develop a way to measure evolutionary rates comparably between the two networks and explain this difference in terms of network evolution. The process of biological evolution via random mutation and subsequent selection tightly constrains the evolution of regulatory network hubs. The call graph, however, exhibits rapid evolution of its highly connected generic components, made possible by designers' continual fine-tuning. These findings stem from the design principles of the two systems: robustness for biological systems and cost effectiveness (reuse) for software systems.

  5. Comparative analysis of the transcription-factor gene regulatory networks of E. coli and S. cerevisiae

    PubMed Central

    Guzmán-Vargas, Lev; Santillán, Moisés

    2008-01-01

    Background The regulatory interactions between transcription factors (TF) and regulated genes (RG) in a species genome can be lumped together in a single directed graph. The TF's and RG's conform the nodes of this graph, while links are drawn whenever a transcription factor regulates a gene's expression. Projections onto TF nodes can be constructed by linking every two nodes regulating a common gene. Similarly, projections onto RG nodes can be made by linking every two regulated genes sharing at least one common regulator. Recent studies of the connectivity pattern in the transcription-factor regulatory network of many organisms have revealed some interesting properties. However, the differences between TF and RG nodes have not been widely explored. Results After analysing the RG and TF projections of the transcription-factor gene regulatory networks of Escherichia coli and Saccharomyces cerevisiae, we found several common characteristic as well as some noticeable differences. To better understand these differences, we compared the properties of the E. coli and S. cerevisiae RG- and TF-projected networks with those of the corresponding projections built from randomized versions of the original bipartite networks. These last results indicate that the observed differences are mostly due to the very different ratios of TF to RG counts of the E. coli and S. cerevisiae bipartite networks, rather than to their having different connectivity patterns. Conclusion Since E. coli is a prokaryotic organism while S. cerevisiae is eukaryotic, there are important differences between them concerning processing of mRNA before translation, DNA packing, amount of junk DNA, and gene regulation. From the results in this paper we conclude that the most important effect such differences have had on the development of the corresponding transcription-factor gene regulatory networks is their very different ratios of TF to RG numbers. This ratio is more than three times larger in S

  6. Mosaic gene network modelling identified new regulatory mechanisms in HCV infection.

    PubMed

    Popik, Olga V; Petrovskiy, Evgeny D; Mishchenko, Elena L; Lavrik, Inna N; Ivanisenko, Vladimir A

    2016-06-15

    Modelling of gene networks is widely used in systems biology to study the functioning of complex biological systems. Most of the existing mathematical modelling techniques are useful for analysis of well-studied biological processes, for which information on rates of reactions is available. However, complex biological processes such as those determining the phenotypic traits of organisms or pathological disease processes, including pathogen-host interactions, involve complicated cross-talk between interacting networks. Furthermore, the intrinsic details of the interactions between these networks are often missing. In this study, we developed an approach, which we call mosaic network modelling, that allows the combination of independent mathematical models of gene regulatory networks and, thereby, description of complex biological systems. The advantage of this approach is that it allows us to generate the integrated model despite the fact that information on molecular interactions between parts of the model (so-called mosaic fragments) might be missing. To generate a mosaic mathematical model, we used control theory and mathematical models, written in the form of a system of ordinary differential equations (ODEs). In the present study, we investigated the efficiency of this method in modelling the dynamics of more than 10,000 simulated mosaic regulatory networks consisting of two pieces. Analysis revealed that this approach was highly efficient, as the mean deviation of the dynamics of mosaic network elements from the behaviour of the initial parts of the model was less than 10%. It turned out that for construction of the control functional, data on perturbation of one or two vertices of the mosaic piece are sufficient. Further, we used the developed method to construct a mosaic gene regulatory network including hepatitis C virus (HCV) as the first piece and the tumour necrosis factor (TNF)-induced apoptosis and NF-κB induction pathways as the second piece. Thus

  7. Identification of regulatory structure and kinetic parameters of biochemical networks via mixed-integer dynamic optimization

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Recovering the network topology and associated kinetic parameter values from time-series data are central topics in systems biology. Nevertheless, methods that simultaneously do both are few and lack generality. Results Here, we present a rigorous approach for simultaneously estimating the parameters and regulatory topology of biochemical networks from time-series data. The parameter estimation task is formulated as a mixed-integer dynamic optimization problem with: (i) binary variables, used to model the existence of regulatory interactions and kinetic effects of metabolites in the network processes; and (ii) continuous variables, denoting metabolites concentrations and kinetic parameters values. The approach simultaneously optimizes the Akaike criterion, which captures the trade-off between complexity (measured by the number of parameters), and accuracy of the fitting. This simultaneous optimization mitigates a possible overfitting that could result from addition of spurious regulatory interactions. Conclusion The capabilities of our approach were tested in one benchmark problem. Our algorithm is able to identify a set of plausible network topologies with their associated parameters. PMID:24176044

  8. Regulatory network of microRNAs and genes in testicular cancer

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Yansong; Xu, Zhiwen; Wang, Ning; Wang, Shang

    2016-01-01

    Testicular cancer (TC) is the most common cancer in men between 20–40 years of age. A large number of studies have focused on identifying the cause of this disease; however, the underlying regulatory mechanisms have not been thoroughly investigated and the specific cause remains unclear. The present study systematically analyzed the regulatory associations between genes, transcription factors (TFs) and microRNAs (miRNAs), aiming to obtain key information regarding the regulatory processes of TC. Three different networks were derived from the analysis: Global, related and differentially-expressed. These networks may be able to identify the primary causes of TC through gene analysis, which determines underlying regulatory pathways and subsequently discloses information regarding TC pathology. The differentially-expressed network is considered to be the most important. If the differentially-expressed elements in this network were to be manipulated back to normal levels via human intervention, this may prevent the onset of TC. This may be described as suppressing TC at the genetic level. If the abnormal expression of these elements was to be corrected, then preventing TC at the source may be a feasible option. Thus, the present study compared and analyzed the global, related and differentially-expressed networks, from which important genetic pathways in TC were highlighted. In addition, self-adaptation associations, host genes and target genes were analyzed. The upstream and downstream elements were identified, and TFs were predicted using the P-match method. When combined, the results of the current study provide the basic materials for further research on important genes in TC, and provide guidance on the pathological curative method. PMID:27900048

  9. Inference of the Xenopus tropicalis embryonic regulatory network and spatial gene expression patterns

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background During embryogenesis, signaling molecules produced by one cell population direct gene regulatory changes in neighboring cells and influence their developmental fates and spatial organization. One of the earliest events in the development of the vertebrate embryo is the establishment of three germ layers, consisting of the ectoderm, mesoderm and endoderm. Attempts to measure gene expression in vivo in different germ layers and cell types are typically complicated by the heterogeneity of cell types within biological samples (i.e., embryos), as the responses of individual cell types are intermingled into an aggregate observation of heterogeneous cell types. Here, we propose a novel method to elucidate gene regulatory circuits from these aggregate measurements in embryos of the frog Xenopus tropicalis using gene network inference algorithms and then test the ability of the inferred networks to predict spatial gene expression patterns. Results We use two inference models with different underlying assumptions that incorporate existing network information, an ODE model for steady-state data and a Markov model for time series data, and contrast the performance of the two models. We apply our method to both control and knockdown embryos at multiple time points to reconstruct the core mesoderm and endoderm regulatory circuits. Those inferred networks are then used in combination with known dorsal-ventral spatial expression patterns of a subset of genes to predict spatial expression patterns for other genes. Both models are able to predict spatial expression patterns for some of the core mesoderm and endoderm genes, but interestingly of different gene subsets, suggesting that neither model is sufficient to recapitulate all of the spatial patterns, yet they are complementary for the patterns that they do capture. Conclusion The presented methodology of gene network inference combined with spatial pattern prediction provides an additional layer of validation to

  10. Directed partial correlation: inferring large-scale gene regulatory network through induced topology disruptions.

    PubMed

    Yuan, Yinyin; Li, Chang-Tsun; Windram, Oliver

    2011-04-06

    Inferring regulatory relationships among many genes based on their temporal variation in transcript abundance has been a popular research topic. Due to the nature of microarray experiments, classical tools for time series analysis lose power since the number of variables far exceeds the number of the samples. In this paper, we describe some of the existing multivariate inference techniques that are applicable to hundreds of variables and show the potential challenges for small-sample, large-scale data. We propose a directed partial correlation (DPC) method as an efficient and effective solution to regulatory network inference using these data. Specifically for genomic data, the proposed method is designed to deal with large-scale datasets. It combines the efficiency of partial correlation for setting up network topology by testing conditional independence, and the concept of Granger causality to assess topology change with induced interruptions. The idea is that when a transcription factor is induced artificially within a gene network, the disruption of the network by the induction signifies a genes role in transcriptional regulation. The benchmarking results using GeneNetWeaver, the simulator for the DREAM challenges, provide strong evidence of the outstanding performance of the proposed DPC method. When applied to real biological data, the inferred starch metabolism network in Arabidopsis reveals many biologically meaningful network modules worthy of further investigation. These results collectively suggest DPC is a versatile tool for genomics research. The R package DPC is available for download (http://code.google.com/p/dpcnet/).

  11. Integrating Quantitative Knowledge into a Qualitative Gene Regulatory Network

    PubMed Central

    Bourdon, Jérémie; Eveillard, Damien; Siegel, Anne

    2011-01-01

    Despite recent improvements in molecular techniques, biological knowledge remains incomplete. Any theorizing about living systems is therefore necessarily based on the use of heterogeneous and partial information. Much current research has focused successfully on the qualitative behaviors of macromolecular networks. Nonetheless, it is not capable of taking into account available quantitative information such as time-series protein concentration variations. The present work proposes a probabilistic modeling framework that integrates both kinds of information. Average case analysis methods are used in combination with Markov chains to link qualitative information about transcriptional regulations to quantitative information about protein concentrations. The approach is illustrated by modeling the carbon starvation response in Escherichia coli. It accurately predicts the quantitative time-series evolution of several protein concentrations using only knowledge of discrete gene interactions and a small number of quantitative observations on a single protein concentration. From this, the modeling technique also derives a ranking of interactions with respect to their importance during the experiment considered. Such a classification is confirmed by the literature. Therefore, our method is principally novel in that it allows (i) a hybrid model that integrates both qualitative discrete model and quantities to be built, even using a small amount of quantitative information, (ii) new quantitative predictions to be derived, (iii) the robustness and relevance of interactions with respect to phenotypic criteria to be precisely quantified, and (iv) the key features of the model to be extracted that can be used as a guidance to design future experiments. PMID:21935350

  12. Functional and Regulatory Biomolecular Networks Organized by DNA Nanostructures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Minghui

    DNA has recently emerged as an extremely promising material to organize molecules on nanoscale. The reliability of base recognition, self-assembling behavior, and attractive structural properties of DNA are of unparalleled value in systems of this size. DNA scaffolds have already been used to organize a variety of molecules including nanoparticles and proteins. New protein-DNA bio-conjugation chemistries make it possible to precisely position proteins and other biomolecules on underlying DNA scaffolds, generating multi-biomolecule pathways with the ability to modulate intermolecular interactions and the local environment. This dissertation focuses on studying the application of using DNA nanostructure to direct the self-assembly of other biomolecular networks to translate biochemical pathways to non-cellular environments. Presented here are a series of studies toward this application. First, a novel strategy utilized DNA origami as a scaffold to arrange spherical virus capsids into one-dimensional arrays with precise nanoscale positioning. This hierarchical self-assembly allows us to position the virus particles with unprecedented control and allows the future construction of integrated multi-component systems from biological scaffolds using the power of rationally engineered DNA nanostructures. Next, discrete glucose oxidase (GOx)/ horseradish peroxidase (HRP) enzyme pairs were organized on DNA origami tiles with controlled interenzyme spacing and position. This study revealed two different distance-dependent kinetic processes associated with the assembled enzyme pairs. Finally, a tweezer-like DNA nanodevice was designed and constructed to actuate the activity of an enzyme/cofactor pair. Using this approach, several cycles of externally controlled enzyme inhibition and activation were successfully demonstrated. This principle of responsive enzyme nanodevices may be used to regulate other types of enzymes and to introduce feedback or feed-forward control loops.

  13. A Phenotypic Profile of the Candida albicans Regulatory Network

    PubMed Central

    Homann, Oliver R.; Dea, Jeanselle; Noble, Suzanne M.; Johnson, Alexander D.

    2009-01-01

    Candida albicans is a normal resident of the gastrointestinal tract and also the most prevalent fungal pathogen of humans. It last shared a common ancestor with the model yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae over 300 million years ago. We describe a collection of 143 genetically matched strains of C. albicans, each of which has been deleted for a specific transcriptional regulator. This collection represents a large fraction of the non-essential transcription circuitry. A phenotypic profile for each mutant was developed using a screen of 55 growth conditions. The results identify the biological roles of many individual transcriptional regulators; for many, this work represents the first description of their functions. For example, a quarter of the strains showed altered colony formation, a phenotype reflecting transitions among yeast, pseudohyphal, and hyphal cell forms. These transitions, which have been closely linked to pathogenesis, have been extensively studied, yet our work nearly doubles the number of transcriptional regulators known to influence them. As a second example, nearly a quarter of the knockout strains affected sensitivity to commonly used antifungal drugs; although a few transcriptional regulators have previously been implicated in susceptibility to these drugs, our work indicates many additional mechanisms of sensitivity and resistance. Finally, our results inform how transcriptional networks evolve. Comparison with the existing S. cerevisiae data (supplemented by additional S. cerevisiae experiments reported here) allows the first systematic analysis of phenotypic conservation by orthologous transcriptional regulators over a large evolutionary distance. We find that, despite the many specific wiring changes documented between these species, the general phenotypes of orthologous transcriptional regulator knockouts are largely conserved. These observations support the idea that many wiring changes affect the detailed architecture of the circuit, but

  14. Deciphering Fur transcriptional regulatory network highlights its complex role beyond iron metabolism in Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Seo, Sang Woo; Kim, Donghyuk; Latif, Haythem; O'Brien, Edward J; Szubin, Richard; Palsson, Bernhard O

    2014-09-15

    The ferric uptake regulator (Fur) plays a critical role in the transcriptional regulation of iron metabolism. However, the full regulatory potential of Fur remains undefined. Here we comprehensively reconstruct the Fur transcriptional regulatory network in Escherichia coli K-12 MG1655 in response to iron availability using genome-wide measurements. Integrative data analysis reveals that a total of 81 genes in 42 transcription units are directly regulated by three different modes of Fur regulation, including apo- and holo-Fur activation and holo-Fur repression. We show that Fur connects iron transport and utilization enzymes with negative-feedback loop pairs for iron homeostasis. In addition, direct involvement of Fur in the regulation of DNA synthesis, energy metabolism and biofilm development is found. These results show how Fur exhibits a comprehensive regulatory role affecting many fundamental cellular processes linked to iron metabolism in order to coordinate the overall response of E. coli to iron availability.

  15. APG: an Active Protein-Gene network model to quantify regulatory signals in complex biological systems.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jiguang; Sun, Yidan; Zheng, Si; Zhang, Xiang-Sun; Zhou, Huarong; Chen, Luonan

    2013-01-01

    Synergistic interactions among transcription factors (TFs) and their cofactors collectively determine gene expression in complex biological systems. In this work, we develop a novel graphical model, called Active Protein-Gene (APG) network model, to quantify regulatory signals of transcription in complex biomolecular networks through integrating both TF upstream-regulation and downstream-regulation high-throughput data. Firstly, we theoretically and computationally demonstrate the effectiveness of APG by comparing with the traditional strategy based only on TF downstream-regulation information. We then apply this model to study spontaneous type 2 diabetic Goto-Kakizaki (GK) and Wistar control rats. Our biological experiments validate the theoretical results. In particular, SP1 is found to be a hidden TF with changed regulatory activity, and the loss of SP1 activity contributes to the increased glucose production during diabetes development. APG model provides theoretical basis to quantitatively elucidate transcriptional regulation by modelling TF combinatorial interactions and exploiting multilevel high-throughput information.

  16. Understanding regulatory networks and engineering for enhanced drought tolerance in plants.

    PubMed

    Valliyodan, Babu; Nguyen, Henry T

    2006-04-01

    Drought stress is one of the major limitations to crop productivity. To develop crop plants with enhanced tolerance of drought stress, a basic understanding of physiological, biochemical and gene regulatory networks is essential. Various functional genomics tools have helped to advance our understanding of stress signal perception and transduction, and of the associated molecular regulatory network. These tools have revealed several stress-inducible genes and various transcription factors that regulate the drought-stress-inducible systems. Translational genomics of these candidate genes using model plants provided encouraging results, but the field testing of transgenic crop plants for better performance and yield is still minimal. Better understanding of the specific roles of various metabolites in crop stress tolerance will give rise to a strategy for the metabolic engineering of crop tolerance of drought.

  17. An insulin-to-insulin regulatory network orchestrates phenotypic specificity in development and physiology.

    PubMed

    Fernandes de Abreu, Diana Andrea; Caballero, Antonio; Fardel, Pascal; Stroustrup, Nicholas; Chen, Zhunan; Lee, Kyunghwa; Keyes, William D; Nash, Zachary M; López-Moyado, Isaac F; Vaggi, Federico; Cornils, Astrid; Regenass, Martin; Neagu, Anca; Ostojic, Ivan; Liu, Chang; Cho, Yongmin; Sifoglu, Deniz; Shen, Yu; Fontana, Walter; Lu, Hang; Csikasz-Nagy, Attila; Murphy, Coleen T; Antebi, Adam; Blanc, Eric; Apfeld, Javier; Zhang, Yun; Alcedo, Joy; Ch'ng, Queelim

    2014-03-01

    Insulin-like peptides (ILPs) play highly conserved roles in development and physiology. Most animal genomes encode multiple ILPs. Here we identify mechanisms for how the forty Caenorhabditis elegans ILPs coordinate diverse processes, including development, reproduction, longevity and several specific stress responses. Our systematic studies identify an ILP-based combinatorial code for these phenotypes characterized by substantial functional specificity and diversity rather than global redundancy. Notably, we show that ILPs regulate each other transcriptionally, uncovering an ILP-to-ILP regulatory network that underlies the combinatorial phenotypic coding by the ILP family. Extensive analyses of genetic interactions among ILPs reveal how their signals are integrated. A combined analysis of these functional and regulatory ILP interactions identifies local genetic circuits that act in parallel and interact by crosstalk, feedback and compensation. This organization provides emergent mechanisms for phenotypic specificity and graded regulation for the combinatorial phenotypic coding we observe. Our findings also provide insights into how large hormonal networks regulate diverse traits.

  18. Social insect colony as a biological regulatory system: modelling information flow in dominance networks

    PubMed Central

    Nandi, Anjan K.; Sumana, Annagiri; Bhattacharya, Kunal

    2014-01-01

    Social insects provide an excellent platform to investigate flow of information in regulatory systems since their successful social organization is essentially achieved by effective information transfer through complex connectivity patterns among the colony members. Network representation of such behavioural interactions offers a powerful tool for structural as well as dynamical analysis of the underlying regulatory systems. In this paper, we focus on the dominance interaction networks in the tropical social wasp Ropalidia marginata—a species where behavioural observations indicate that such interactions are principally responsible for the transfer of information between individuals about their colony needs, resulting in a regulation of their own activities. Our research reveals that the dominance networks of R. marginata are structurally similar to a class of naturally evolved information processing networks, a fact confirmed also by the predominance of a specific substructure—the ‘feed-forward loop’—a key functional component in many other information transfer networks. The dynamical analysis through Boolean modelling confirms that the networks are sufficiently stable under small fluctuations and yet capable of more efficient information transfer compared to their randomized counterparts. Our results suggest the involvement of a common structural design principle in different biological regulatory systems and a possible similarity with respect to the effect of selection on the organization levels of such systems. The findings are also consistent with the hypothesis that dominance behaviour has been shaped by natural selection to co-opt the information transfer process in such social insect species, in addition to its primal function of mediation of reproductive competition in the colony. PMID:25320069

  19. Social insect colony as a biological regulatory system: modelling information flow in dominance networks.

    PubMed

    Nandi, Anjan K; Sumana, Annagiri; Bhattacharya, Kunal

    2014-12-06

    Social insects provide an excellent platform to investigate flow of information in regulatory systems since their successful social organization is essentially achieved by effective information transfer through complex connectivity patterns among the colony members. Network representation of such behavioural interactions offers a powerful tool for structural as well as dynamical analysis of the underlying regulatory systems. In this paper, we focus on the dominance interaction networks in the tropical social wasp Ropalidia marginata-a species where behavioural observations indicate that such interactions are principally responsible for the transfer of information between individuals about their colony needs, resulting in a regulation of their own activities. Our research reveals that the dominance networks of R. marginata are structurally similar to a class of naturally evolved information processing networks, a fact confirmed also by the predominance of a specific substructure-the 'feed-forward loop'-a key functional component in many other information transfer networks. The dynamical analysis through Boolean modelling confirms that the networks are sufficiently stable under small fluctuations and yet capable of more efficient information transfer compared to their randomized counterparts. Our results suggest the involvement of a common structural design principle in different biological regulatory systems and a possible similarity with respect to the effect of selection on the organization levels of such systems. The findings are also consistent with the hypothesis that dominance behaviour has been shaped by natural selection to co-opt the information transfer process in such social insect species, in addition to its primal function of mediation of reproductive competition in the colony.

  20. ChIP-Array 2: integrating multiple omics data to construct gene regulatory networks

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Panwen; Qin, Jing; Qin, Yiming; Zhu, Yun; Wang, Lily Yan; Li, Mulin Jun; Zhang, Michael Q.; Wang, Junwen

    2015-01-01

    Transcription factors (TFs) play an important role in gene regulation. The interconnections among TFs, chromatin interactions, epigenetic marks and cis-regulatory elements form a complex gene transcription apparatus. Our previous work, ChIP-Array, combined TF binding and transcriptome data to construct gene regulatory networks (GRNs). Here we present an enhanced version, ChIP-Array 2, to integrate additional types of omics data including long-range chromatin interaction, open chromatin region and histone modification data to dissect more comprehensive GRNs involving diverse regulatory components. Moreover, we substantially extended our motif database for human, mouse, rat, fruit fly, worm, yeast and Arabidopsis, and curated large amount of omics data for users to select as input or backend support. With ChIP-Array 2, we compiled a library containing regulatory networks of 18 TFs/chromatin modifiers in mouse embryonic stem cell (mESC). The web server and the mESC library are publicly free and accessible athttp://jjwanglab.org/chip-array. PMID:25916854

  1. A methodology for the structural and functional analysis of signaling and regulatory networks

    PubMed Central

    Klamt, Steffen; Saez-Rodriguez, Julio; Lindquist, Jonathan A; Simeoni, Luca; Gilles, Ernst D

    2006-01-01

    Background Structural analysis of cellular interaction networks contributes to a deeper understanding of network-wide interdependencies, causal relationships, and basic functional capabilities. While the structural analysis of metabolic networks is a well-established field, similar methodologies have been scarcely developed and applied to signaling and regulatory networks. Results We propose formalisms and methods, relying on adapted and partially newly introduced approaches, which facilitate a structural analysis of signaling and regulatory networks with focus on functional aspects. We use two different formalisms to represent and analyze interaction networks: interaction graphs and (logical) interaction hypergraphs. We show that, in interaction graphs, the determination of feedback cycles and of all the signaling paths between any pair of species is equivalent to the computation of elementary modes known from metabolic networks. Knowledge on the set of signaling paths and feedback loops facilitates the computation of intervention strategies and the classification of compounds into activators, inhibitors, ambivalent factors, and non-affecting factors with respect to a certain species. In some cases, qualitative effects induced by perturbations can be unambiguously predicted from the network scheme. Interaction graphs however, are not able to capture AND relationships which do frequently occur in interaction networks. The consequent logical concatenation of all the arcs pointing into a species leads to Boolean networks. For a Boolean representation of cellular interaction networks we propose a formalism based on logical (or signed) interaction hypergraphs, which facilitates in particular a logical steady state analysis (LSSA). LSSA enables studies on the logical processing of signals and the identification of optimal intervention points (targets) in cellular networks. LSSA also reveals network regions whose parametrization and initial states are crucial for the

  2. Inferring regulatory networks from experimental morphological phenotypes: a computational method reverse-engineers planarian regeneration.

    PubMed

    Lobo, Daniel; Levin, Michael

    2015-06-01

    Transformative applications in biomedicine require the discovery of complex regulatory networks that explain the development and regeneration of anatomical structures, and reveal what external signals will trigger desired changes of large-scale pattern. Despite recent advances in bioinformatics, extracting mechanistic pathway models from experimental morphological data is a key open challenge that has resisted automation. The fundamental difficulty of manually predicting emergent behavior of even simple networks has limited the models invented by human scientists to pathway diagrams that show necessary subunit interactions but do not reveal the dynamics that are sufficient for complex, self-regulating pattern to emerge. To finally bridge the gap between high-resolution genetic data and the ability to understand and control patterning, it is critical to develop computational tools to efficiently extract regulatory pathways from the resultant experimental shape phenotypes. For example, planarian regeneration has been studied for over a century, but despite increasing insight into the pathways that control its stem cells, no constructive, mechanistic model has yet been found by human scientists that explains more than one or two key features of its remarkable ability to regenerate its correct anatomical pattern after drastic perturbations. We present a method to infer the molecular products, topology, and spatial and temporal non-linear dynamics of regulatory networks recapitulating in silico the rich dataset of morphological phenotypes resulting from genetic, surgical, and pharmacological experiments. We demonstrated our approach by inferring complete regulatory networks explaining the outcomes of the main functional regeneration experiments in the planarian literature; By analyzing all the datasets together, our system inferred the first systems-biology comprehensive dynamical model explaining patterning in planarian regeneration. This method provides an automated

  3. Inferring Regulatory Networks from Experimental Morphological Phenotypes: A Computational Method Reverse-Engineers Planarian Regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Lobo, Daniel; Levin, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Transformative applications in biomedicine require the discovery of complex regulatory networks that explain the development and regeneration of anatomical structures, and reveal what external signals will trigger desired changes of large-scale pattern. Despite recent advances in bioinformatics, extracting mechanistic pathway models from experimental morphological data is a key open challenge that has resisted automation. The fundamental difficulty of manually predicting emergent behavior of even simple networks has limited the models invented by human scientists to pathway diagrams that show necessary subunit interactions but do not reveal the dynamics that are sufficient for complex, self-regulating pattern to emerge. To finally bridge the gap between high-resolution genetic data and the ability to understand and control patterning, it is critical to develop computational tools to efficiently extract regulatory pathways from the resultant experimental shape phenotypes. For example, planarian regeneration has been studied for over a century, but despite increasing insight into the pathways that control its stem cells, no constructive, mechanistic model has yet been found by human scientists that explains more than one or two key features of its remarkable ability to regenerate its correct anatomical pattern after drastic perturbations. We present a method to infer the molecular products, topology, and spatial and temporal non-linear dynamics of regulatory networks recapitulating in silico the rich dataset of morphological phenotypes resulting from genetic, surgical, and pharmacological experiments. We demonstrated our approach by inferring complete regulatory networks explaining the outcomes of the main functional regeneration experiments in the planarian literature; By analyzing all the datasets together, our system inferred the first systems-biology comprehensive dynamical model explaining patterning in planarian regeneration. This method provides an automated

  4. Stochastic Analysis of Gene Regulatory Networks using Finite State Projections and Singular Perturbation

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2006-01-01

    Khammash Department of Mechanical Engineering University of California Santa Barbara, CA 93106-5070 Abstract—Considerable recent experimental evidence sug...relevant statistics of the modeled processes. However, the complexity of gene regulatory networks poses serious computational difficulties and makes any...resulting slow manifold FSP algorithm on a simple example arising in the cellular heat shock response mechanism . I. INTRODUCTION Through evolution living

  5. Systematic genetic analysis of transcription factors to map the fission yeast transcription-regulatory network.

    PubMed

    Chua, Gordon

    2013-12-01

    Mapping transcriptional-regulatory networks requires the identification of target genes, binding specificities and signalling pathways of transcription factors. However, the characterization of each transcription factor sufficiently for deciphering such networks remains laborious. The recent availability of overexpression and deletion strains for almost all of the transcription factor genes in the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe provides a valuable resource to better investigate transcription factors using systematic genetics. In the present paper, I review and discuss the utility of these strain collections combined with transcriptome profiling and genome-wide chromatin immunoprecipitation to identify the target genes of transcription factors.

  6. A comparative analytical assay of gene regulatory networks inferred using microarray and RNA-seq datasets

    PubMed Central

    Izadi, Fereshteh; Zarrini, Hamid Najafi; Kiani, Ghaffar; Jelodar, Nadali Babaeian

    2016-01-01

    A Gene Regulatory Network (GRN) is a collection of interactions between molecular regulators and their targets in cells governing gene expression level. Omics data explosion generated from high-throughput genomic assays such as microarray and RNA-Seq technologies and the emergence of a number of pre-processing methods demands suitable guidelines to determine the impact of transcript data platforms and normalization procedures on describing associations in GRNs. In this study exploiting publically available microarray and RNA-Seq datasets and a gold standard of transcriptional interactions in Arabidopsis, we performed a comparison between six GRNs derived by RNA-Seq and microarray data and different normalization procedures. As a result we observed that compared algorithms were highly data-specific and Networks reconstructed by RNA-Seq data revealed a considerable accuracy against corresponding networks captured by microarrays. Topological analysis showed that GRNs inferred from two platforms were similar in several of topological features although we observed more connectivity in RNA-Seq derived genes network. Taken together transcriptional regulatory networks obtained by Robust Multiarray Averaging (RMA) and Variance-Stabilizing Transformed (VST) normalized data demonstrated predicting higher rate of true edges over the rest of methods used in this comparison. PMID:28293077

  7. Inferring Gene Regulatory Networks by Singular Value Decomposition and Gravitation Field Algorithm

    PubMed Central

    Zheng, Ming; Wu, Jia-nan; Huang, Yan-xin; Liu, Gui-xia; Zhou, You; Zhou, Chun-guang

    2012-01-01

    Reconstruction of gene regulatory networks (GRNs) is of utmost interest and has become a challenge computational problem in system biology. However, every existing inference algorithm from gene expression profiles has its own advantages and disadvantages. In particular, the effectiveness and efficiency of every previous algorithm is not high enough. In this work, we proposed a novel inference algorithm from gene expression data based on differential equation model. In this algorithm, two methods were included for inferring GRNs. Before reconstructing GRNs, singular value decomposition method was used to decompose gene expression data, determine the algorithm solution space, and get all candidate solutions of GRNs. In these generated family of candidate solutions, gravitation field algorithm was modified to infer GRNs, used to optimize the criteria of differential equation model, and search the best network structure result. The proposed algorithm is validated on both the simulated scale-free network and real benchmark gene regulatory network in networks database. Both the Bayesian method and the traditional differential equation model were also used to infer GRNs, and the results were used to compare with the proposed algorithm in our work. And genetic algorithm and simulated annealing were also used to evaluate gravitation field algorithm. The cross-validation results confirmed the effectiveness of our algorithm, which outperforms significantly other previous algorithms. PMID:23226565

  8. Data-driven integration of genome-scale regulatory and metabolic network models.

    PubMed

    Imam, Saheed; Schäuble, Sascha; Brooks, Aaron N; Baliga, Nitin S; Price, Nathan D

    2015-01-01

    Microbes are diverse and extremely versatile organisms that play vital roles in all ecological niches. Understanding and harnessing microbial systems will be key to the sustainability of our planet. One approach to improving our knowledge of microbial processes is through data-driven and mechanism-informed computational modeling. Individual models of biological networks (such as metabolism, transcription, and signaling) have played pivotal roles in driving microbial research through the years. These networks, however, are highly interconnected and function in concert-a fact that has led to the development of a variety of approaches aimed at simulating the integrated functions of two or more network types. Though the task of integrating these different models is fraught with new challenges, the large amounts of high-throughput data sets being generated, and algorithms being developed, means that the time is at hand for concerted efforts to build integrated regulatory-metabolic networks in a data-driven fashion. In this perspective, we review current approaches for constructing integrated regulatory-metabolic models and outline new strategies for future development of these network models for any microbial system.

  9. Data-driven integration of genome-scale regulatory and metabolic network models

    DOE PAGES

    Imam, Saheed; Schauble, Sascha; Brooks, Aaron N.; ...

    2015-05-05

    Microbes are diverse and extremely versatile organisms that play vital roles in all ecological niches. Understanding and harnessing microbial systems will be key to the sustainability of our planet. One approach to improving our knowledge of microbial processes is through data-driven and mechanism-informed computational modeling. Individual models of biological networks (such as metabolism, transcription, and signaling) have played pivotal roles in driving microbial research through the years. These networks, however, are highly interconnected and function in concert a fact that has led to the development of a variety of approaches aimed at simulating the integrated functions of two or moremore » network types. Though the task of integrating these different models is fraught with new challenges, the large amounts of high-throughput data sets being generated, and algorithms being developed, means that the time is at hand for concerted efforts to build integrated regulatory-metabolic networks in a data-driven fashion. Lastly, in this perspective, we review current approaches for constructing integrated regulatory-metabolic models and outline new strategies for future development of these network models for any microbial system.« less

  10. Inferring gene regulatory networks by singular value decomposition and gravitation field algorithm.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Ming; Wu, Jia-nan; Huang, Yan-xin; Liu, Gui-xia; Zhou, You; Zhou, Chun-guang

    2012-01-01

    Reconstruction of gene regulatory networks (GRNs) is of utmost interest and has become a challenge computational problem in system biology. However, every existing inference algorithm from gene expression profiles has its own advantages and disadvantages. In particular, the effectiveness and efficiency of every previous algorithm is not high enough. In this work, we proposed a novel inference algorithm from gene expression data based on differential equation model. In this algorithm, two methods were included for inferring GRNs. Before reconstructing GRNs, singular value decomposition method was used to decompose gene expression data, determine the algorithm solution space, and get all candidate solutions of GRNs. In these generated family of candidate solutions, gravitation field algorithm was modified to infer GRNs, used to optimize the criteria of differential equation model, and search the best network structure result. The proposed algorithm is validated on both the simulated scale-free network and real benchmark gene regulatory network in networks database. Both the Bayesian method and the traditional differential equation model were also used to infer GRNs, and the results were used to compare with the proposed algorithm in our work. And genetic algorithm and simulated annealing were also used to evaluate gravitation field algorithm. The cross-validation results confirmed the effectiveness of our algorithm, which outperforms significantly other previous algorithms.

  11. Data-driven integration of genome-scale regulatory and metabolic network models

    SciTech Connect

    Imam, Saheed; Schauble, Sascha; Brooks, Aaron N.; Baliga, Nitin S.; Price, Nathan D.

    2015-05-05

    Microbes are diverse and extremely versatile organisms that play vital roles in all ecological niches. Understanding and harnessing microbial systems will be key to the sustainability of our planet. One approach to improving our knowledge of microbial processes is through data-driven and mechanism-informed computational modeling. Individual models of biological networks (such as metabolism, transcription, and signaling) have played pivotal roles in driving microbial research through the years. These networks, however, are highly interconnected and function in concert a fact that has led to the development of a variety of approaches aimed at simulating the integrated functions of two or more network types. Though the task of integrating these different models is fraught with new challenges, the large amounts of high-throughput data sets being generated, and algorithms being developed, means that the time is at hand for concerted efforts to build integrated regulatory-metabolic networks in a data-driven fashion. Lastly, in this perspective, we review current approaches for constructing integrated regulatory-metabolic models and outline new strategies for future development of these network models for any microbial system.

  12. Regulatory network reconstruction using an integral additive model with flexible kernel functions

    PubMed Central

    Novikov, Eugene; Barillot, Emmanuel

    2008-01-01

    Background Reconstruction of regulatory networks is one of the most challenging tasks of systems biology. A limited amount of experimental data and little prior knowledge make the problem difficult to solve. Although models that are currently used for inferring regulatory networks are sometimes able to make useful predictions about the structures and mechanisms of molecular interactions, there is still a strong demand to develop increasingly universal and accurate approaches for network reconstruction. Results The additive regulation model is represented by a set of differential equations and is frequently used for network inference from time series data. Here we generalize this model by converting differential equations into integral equations with adjustable kernel functions. These kernel functions can be selected based on prior knowledge or defined through iterative improvement in data analysis. This makes the integral model very flexible and thus capable of covering a broad range of biological systems more adequately and specifically than previous models. Conclusion We reconstructed network structures from artificial and real experimental data using differential and integral inference models. The artificial data were simulated using mathematical models implemented in JDesigner. The real data were publicly available yeast cell cycle microarray time series. The integral model outperformed the differential one for all cases. In the integral model, we tested the zero-degree polynomial and single exponential kernels. Further improvements could be expected if the kernel were selected more specifically depending on the system. PMID:18218091

  13. Integrative FourD omics approach profiles the target network of the carbon storage regulatory system.

    PubMed

    Sowa, Steven W; Gelderman, Grant; Leistra, Abigail N; Buvanendiran, Aishwarya; Lipp, Sarah; Pitaktong, Areen; Vakulskas, Christopher A; Romeo, Tony; Baldea, Michael; Contreras, Lydia M

    2017-01-26

    Multi-target regulators represent a largely untapped area for metabolic engineering and anti-bacterial development. These regulators are complex to characterize because they often act at multiple levels, affecting proteins, transcripts and metabolites. Therefore, single omics experiments cannot profile their underlying targets and mechanisms. In this work, we used an Integrative FourD omics approach (INFO) that consists of collecting and analyzing systems data throughout multiple time points, using multiple genetic backgrounds, and multiple omics approaches (transcriptomics, proteomics and high throughput sequencing crosslinking immunoprecipitation) to evaluate simultaneous changes in gene expression after imposing an environmental stress that accentuates the regulatory features of a network. Using this approach, we profiled the targets and potential regulatory mechanisms of a global regulatory system, the well-studied carbon storage regulatory (Csr) system of Escherichia coli, which is widespread among bacteria. Using 126 sets of proteomics and transcriptomics data, we identified 136 potential direct CsrA targets, including 50 novel ones, categorized their behaviors into distinct regulatory patterns, and performed in vivo fluorescence-based follow up experiments. The results of this work validate 17 novel mRNAs as authentic direct CsrA targets and demonstrate a generalizable strategy to integrate multiple lines of omics data to identify a core pool of regulator targets.

  14. Characterization of WRKY co-regulatory networks in rice and Arabidopsis

    PubMed Central

    Berri, Stefano; Abbruscato, Pamela; Faivre-Rampant, Odile; Brasileiro, Ana CM; Fumasoni, Irene; Satoh, Kouji; Kikuchi, Shoshi; Mizzi, Luca; Morandini, Piero; Pè, Mario Enrico; Piffanelli, Pietro

    2009-01-01

    Background The WRKY transcription factor gene family has a very ancient origin and has undergone extensive duplications in the plant kingdom. Several studies have pointed out their involvement in a range of biological processes, revealing that a large number of WRKY genes are transcriptionally regulated under conditions of biotic and/or abiotic stress. To investigate the existence of WRKY co-regulatory networks in plants, a whole gene family WRKYs expression study was carried out in rice (Oryza sativa). This analysis was extended to Arabidopsis thaliana taking advantage of an extensive repository of gene expression data. Results The presented results suggested that 24 members of the rice WRKY gene family (22% of the total) were differentially-regulated in response to at least one of the stress conditions tested. We defined the existence of nine OsWRKY gene clusters comprising both phylogenetically related and unrelated genes that were significantly co-expressed, suggesting that specific sets of WRKY genes might act in co-regulatory networks. This hypothesis was tested by Pearson Correlation Coefficient analysis of the Arabidopsis WRKY gene family in a large set of Affymetrix microarray experiments. AtWRKYs were found to belong to two main co-regulatory networks (COR-A, COR-B) and two smaller ones (COR-C and COR-D), all including genes belonging to distinct phylogenetic groups. The COR-A network contained several AtWRKY genes known to be involved mostly in response to pathogens, whose physical and/or genetic interaction was experimentally proven. We also showed that specific co-regulatory networks were conserved between the two model species by identifying Arabidopsis orthologs of the co-expressed OsWRKY genes. Conclusion In this work we identified sets of co-expressed WRKY genes in both rice and Arabidopsis that are functionally likely to cooperate in the same signal transduction pathways. We propose that, making use of data from co-regulatory networks, it is

  15. The Max-Min High-Order Dynamic Bayesian Network for Learning Gene Regulatory Networks with Time-Delayed Regulations.

    PubMed

    Li, Yifeng; Chen, Haifen; Zheng, Jie; Ngom, Alioune

    2016-01-01

    Accurately reconstructing gene regulatory network (GRN) from gene expression data is a challenging task in systems biology. Although some progresses have been made, the performance of GRN reconstruction still has much room for improvement. Because many regulatory events are asynchronous, learning gene interactions with multiple time delays is an effective way to improve the accuracy of GRN reconstruction. Here, we propose a new approach, called Max-Min high-order dynamic Bayesian network (MMHO-DBN) by extending the Max-Min hill-climbing Bayesian network technique originally devised for learning a Bayesian network's structure from static data. Our MMHO-DBN can explicitly model the time lags between regulators and targets in an efficient manner. It first uses constraint-based ideas to limit the space of potential structures, and then applies search-and-score ideas to search for an optimal HO-DBN structure. The performance of MMHO-DBN to GRN reconstruction was evaluated using both synthetic and real gene expression time-series data. Results show that MMHO-DBN is more accurate than current time-delayed GRN learning methods, and has an intermediate computing performance. Furthermore, it is able to learn long time-delayed relationships between genes. We applied sensitivity analysis on our model to study the performance variation along different parameter settings. The result provides hints on the setting of parameters of MMHO-DBN.

  16. Selection for distinct gene expression properties favours the evolution of mutational robustness in gene regulatory networks.

    PubMed

    Espinosa-Soto, C

    2016-11-01

    Mutational robustness is a genotype's tendency to keep a phenotypic trait with little and few changes in the face of mutations. Mutational robustness is both ubiquitous and evolutionarily important as it affects in different ways the probability that new phenotypic variation arises. Understanding the origins of robustness is specially relevant for systems of development that are phylogenetically widespread and that construct phenotypic traits with a strong impact on fitness. Gene regulatory networks are examples of this class of systems. They comprise sets of genes that, through cross-regulation, build the gene activity patterns that define cellular responses, different tissues or distinct cell types. Several empirical observations, such as a greater robustness of wild-type phenotypes, suggest that stabilizing selection underlies the evolution of mutational robustness. However, the role of selection in the evolution of robustness is still under debate. Computer simulations of the dynamics and evolution of gene regulatory networks have shown that selection for any gene activity pattern that is steady and self-sustaining is sufficient to promote the evolution of mutational robustness. Here, I generalize this scenario using a computational model to show that selection for different aspects of a gene activity phenotype increases mutational robustness. Mutational robustness evolves even when selection favours properties that conflict with the stationarity of a gene activity pattern. The results that I present support an important role for stabilizing selection in the evolution of robustness in gene regulatory networks.

  17. Modeling dynamics of adaptive complex systems: From gene regulatory networks to financial markets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Min

    This dissertation aims to model the dynamics of two types of adaptive complex systems: gene regulatory networks and financial markets. In modeling gene regulatory networks, a dynamics-driven rewiring mechanism is introduced to Boolean networks and it is found that a critical state emerges spontaneously resulting from the interplay between topology and dynamics during evolution. For biologically realized network sizes, significant finite-size effects are observed. In networks of competing Boolean nodes, we find that in small networks, the evolutionary dynamics selects for input inverting functions rather than canalizing functions in infinitely large networks. It is found that finite sizes can cause symmetry breaking in the evolutionary dynamics. Using the Polya theorem, we show the number of the function classes increases to 46, in contrast to 14 in infinitely large networks, due to the reduced symmetry which matches our simulation results well. In addition, we find that an optimum amount of stochastic noise in the signals exchanged between nodes can result in maximum excess canalization. In modeling financial markets, we simulate a double-auction virtual market by utilizing reaction-diffusion processes to describe the dynamics of limit orders. We find that the log-returns produced have a dynamical scaling exponent of 1/4 and nonstationary, negatively autocorrelated increments. By investigating the microstructure of the virtual market, we find that the mean interarrival time between transactions satisfies an increasing power-law function of time. We propose an inhomogeneous compound Poisson process with a decreasing power-law intensity rate function and demonstrate that this purely jump process captures the essential macroscopic dynamics of the virtual market.

  18. How Heme Oxygenase-1 Prevents Heme-Induced Cell Death.

    PubMed

    Lanceta, Lilibeth; Mattingly, Jacob M; Li, Chi; Eaton, John W

    2015-01-01

    Earlier observations indicate that free heme is selectively toxic to cells lacking heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) but how this enzyme prevents heme toxicity remains unexplained. Here, using A549 (human lung cancer) and immortalized human bronchial epithelial cells incubated with exogenous heme, we find knock-down of HO-1 using siRNA does promote the accumulation of cell-associated heme and heme-induced cell death. However, it appears that the toxic effects of heme are exerted by "loose" (probably intralysosomal) iron because cytotoxic effects of heme are lessened by pre-incubation of HO-1 deficient cells with desferrioxamine (which localizes preferentially in the lysosomal compartment). Desferrioxamine also decreases lysosomal rupture promoted by intracellularly generated hydrogen peroxide. Supporting the importance of endogenous oxidant production, both chemical and siRNA inhibition of catalase activity predisposes HO-1 deficient cells to heme-mediated killing. Importantly, it appears that HO-1 deficiency somehow blocks the induction of ferritin; control cells exposed to heme show ~10-fold increases in ferritin heavy chain expression whereas in heme-exposed HO-1 deficient cells ferritin expression is unchanged. Finally, overexpression of ferritin H chain in HO-1 deficient cells completely prevents heme-induced cytotoxicity. Although two other products of HO-1 activity--CO and bilirubin--have been invoked to explain HO-1-mediated cytoprotection, we conclude that, at least in this experimental system, HO-1 activity triggers the induction of ferritin and the latter is actually responsible for the cytoprotective effects of HO-1 activity.

  19. Lessons from the modular organization of the transcriptional regulatory network of Bacillus subtilis

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The regulation of gene expression at the transcriptional level is a fundamental process in prokaryotes. Among the different kind of mechanisms modulating gene transcription, the one based on DNA binding transcription factors, is the most extensively studied and the results, for a great number of model organisms, have been compiled making it possible the in silico construction of their corresponding transcriptional regulatory networks and the analysis of the biological relationships of the components of these intricate networks, that allows to elucidate the significant aspects of their organization and evolution. Results We present a thorough review of each regulatory element that constitutes the transcriptional regulatory network of Bacillus subtilis. For facilitating the discussion, we organized the network in topological modules. Our study highlight the importance of σ factors, some of them acting as master regulators which characterize modules by inter- or intra-connecting them and play a key role in the cascades that define relevant cellular processes in this organism. We discussed that some particular functions were distributed in more than one module and that some modules contained more than one related function. We confirm that the presence of paralogous proteins confers advantages to B. subtilis to adapt and select strategies to successfully face the extreme and changing environmental conditions in which it lives. Conclusions The intricate organization is the product of a non-random network evolution that primarily follows a hierarchical organization based on the presence of transcription and σ factor, which is reflected in the connections that exist within and between modules. PMID:24237659

  20. Genome-scale cold stress response regulatory networks in ten Arabidopsis thaliana ecotypes

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Low temperature leads to major crop losses every year. Although several studies have been conducted focusing on diversity of cold tolerance level in multiple phenotypically divergent Arabidopsis thaliana (A. thaliana) ecotypes, genome-scale molecular understanding is still lacking. Results In this study, we report genome-scale transcript response diversity of 10 A. thaliana ecotypes originating from different geographical locations to non-freezing cold stress (10°C). To analyze the transcriptional response diversity, we initially compared transcriptome changes in all 10 ecotypes using Arabidopsis NimbleGen ATH6 microarrays. In total 6061 transcripts were significantly cold regulated (p < 0.01) in 10 ecotypes, including 498 transcription factors and 315 transposable elements. The majority of the transcripts (75%) showed ecotype specific expression pattern. By using sequence data available from Arabidopsis thaliana 1001 genome project, we further investigated sequence polymorphisms in the core cold stress regulon genes. Significant numbers of non-synonymous amino acid changes were observed in the coding region of the CBF regulon genes. Considering the limited knowledge about regulatory interactions between transcription factors and their target genes in the model plant A. thaliana, we have adopted a powerful systems genetics approach- Network Component Analysis (NCA) to construct an in-silico transcriptional regulatory network model during response to cold stress. The resulting regulatory network contained 1,275 nodes and 7,720 connections, with 178 transcription factors and 1,331 target genes. Conclusions A. thaliana ecotypes exhibit considerable variation in transcriptome level responses to non-freezing cold stress treatment. Ecotype specific transcripts and related gene ontology (GO) categories were identified to delineate natural variation of cold stress regulated differential gene expression in the model plant A. thaliana. The predicted

  1. Gene regulatory network inference and validation using relative change ratio analysis and time-delayed dynamic Bayesian network.

    PubMed

    Li, Peng; Gong, Ping; Li, Haoni; Perkins, Edward J; Wang, Nan; Zhang, Chaoyang

    2014-12-01

    The Dialogue for Reverse Engineering Assessments and Methods (DREAM) project was initiated in 2006 as a community-wide effort for the development of network inference challenges for rigorous assessment of reverse engineering methods for biological networks. We participated in the in silico network inference challenge of DREAM3 in 2008. Here we report the details of our approach and its performance on the synthetic challenge datasets. In our methodology, we first developed a model called relative change ratio (RCR), which took advantage of the heterozygous knockdown data and null-mutant knockout data provided by the challenge, in order to identify the potential regulators for the genes. With this information, a time-delayed dynamic Bayesian network (TDBN) approach was then used to infer gene regulatory networks from time series trajectory datasets. Our approach considerably reduced the searching space of TDBN; hence, it gained a much higher efficiency and accuracy. The networks predicted using our approach were evaluated comparatively along with 29 other submissions by two metrics (area under the ROC curve and area under the precision-recall curve). The overall performance of our approach ranked the second among all participating teams.

  2. NIMEFI: gene regulatory network inference using multiple ensemble feature importance algorithms.

    PubMed

    Ruyssinck, Joeri; Huynh-Thu, Vân Anh; Geurts, Pierre; Dhaene, Tom; Demeester, Piet; Saeys, Yvan

    2014-01-01

    One of the long-standing open challenges in computational systems biology is the topology inference of gene regulatory networks from high-throughput omics data. Recently, two community-wide efforts, DREAM4 and DREAM5, have been established to benchmark network inference techniques using gene expression measurements. In these challenges the overall top performer was the GENIE3 algorithm. This method decomposes the network inference task into separate regression problems for each gene in the network in which the expression values of a particular target gene are predicted using all other genes as possible predictors. Next, using tree-based ensemble methods, an importance measure for each predictor gene is calculated with respect to the target gene and a high feature importance is considered as putative evidence of a regulatory link existing between both genes. The contribution of this work is twofold. First, we generalize the regression decomposition strategy of GENIE3 to other feature importance methods. We compare the performance of support vector regression, the elastic net, random forest regression, symbolic regression and their ensemble variants in this setting to the original GENIE3 algorithm. To create the ensemble variants, we propose a subsampling approach which allows us to cast any feature selection algorithm that produces a feature ranking into an ensemble feature importance algorithm. We demonstrate that the ensemble setting is key to the network inference task, as only ensemble variants achieve top performance. As second contribution, we explore the effect of using rankwise averaged predictions of multiple ensemble algorithms as opposed to only one. We name this approach NIMEFI (Network Inference using Multiple Ensemble Feature Importance algorithms) and show that this approach outperforms all individual methods in general, although on a specific network a single method can perform better. An implementation of NIMEFI has been made publicly available.

  3. Segregation of striated and smooth muscle lineages by a Notch-dependent regulatory network

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Lineage segregation from multipotent epithelia is a central theme in development and in adult stem cell plasticity. Previously, we demonstrated that striated and smooth muscle cells share a common progenitor within their epithelium of origin, the lateral domain of the somite-derived dermomyotome. However, what controls the segregation of these muscle subtypes remains unknown. We use this in vivo bifurcation of fates as an experimental model to uncover the underlying mechanisms of lineage diversification from bipotent progenitors. Results Using the strength of spatio-temporally controlled gene missexpression in avian embryos, we report that Notch harbors distinct pro-smooth muscle activities depending on the duration of the signal; short periods prevent striated muscle development and extended periods, through Snail1, promote cell emigration from the dermomyotome towards a smooth muscle fate. Furthermore, we define a Muscle Regulatory Network, consisting of Id2, Id3, FoxC2 and Snail1, which acts in concert to promote smooth muscle by antagonizing the pro-myogenic activities of Myf5 and Pax7, which induce striated muscle fate. Notch and BMP closely regulate the network and reciprocally reinforce each other’s signal. In turn, components of the network strengthen Notch signaling, while Pax7 silences this signaling. These feedbacks augment the robustness and flexibility of the network regulating muscle subtype segregation. Conclusions Our results demarcate the details of the Muscle Regulatory Network, underlying the segregation of muscle sublineages from the lateral dermomyotome, and exhibit how factors within the network promote the smooth muscle at the expense of the striated muscle fate. This network acts as an exemplar demonstrating how lineage segregation occurs within epithelial primordia by integrating inputs from competing factors. PMID:25015411

  4. Reconstruction and analysis of the genetic and metabolic regulatory networks of the central metabolism of Bacillus subtilis

    PubMed Central

    Goelzer, Anne; Bekkal Brikci, Fadia; Martin-Verstraete, Isabelle; Noirot, Philippe; Bessières, Philippe; Aymerich, Stéphane; Fromion, Vincent

    2008-01-01

    Background Few genome-scale models of organisms focus on the regulatory networks and none of them integrates all known levels of regulation. In particular, the regulations involving metabolite pools are often neglected. However, metabolite pools link the metabolic to the genetic network through genetic regulations, including those involving effectors of transcription factors or riboswitches. Consequently, they play pivotal roles in the global organization of the genetic and metabolic regulatory networks. Results We report the manually curated reconstruction of the genetic and metabolic regulatory networks of the central metabolism of Bacillus subtilis (transcriptional, translational and post-translational regulations and modulation of enzymatic activities). We provide a systematic graphic representation of regulations of each metabolic pathway based on the central role of metabolites in regulation. We show that the complex regulatory network of B. subtilis can be decomposed as sets of locally regulated modules, which are coordinated by global regulators. Conclusion This work reveals the strong involvement of metabolite pools in the general regulation of the metabolic network. Breaking the metabolic network down into modules based on the control of metabolite pools reveals the functional organization of the genetic and metabolic regulatory networks of B. subtilis. PMID:18302748

  5. Control design for sustained oscillation in a two-gene regulatory network.

    PubMed

    Edwards, Roderick; Kim, Sehjeong; van den Driessche, P

    2011-04-01

    Control strategies for gene regulatory networks have begun to be explored, both experimentally and theoretically, with implications for control of disease as well as for synthetic biology. Recent work has focussed on controls designed to achieve desired stationary states. Another useful objective, however, is the initiation of sustained oscillations in systems where oscillations are normally damped, or even not present. Alternatively, it may be desired to suppress (by damping) oscillations that naturally occur in an uncontrolled network. Here we address these questions in the context of piecewise-affine models of gene regulatory networks with affine controls that match the qualitative nature of the model. In the case of two genes with a single relevant protein concentration threshold per gene, we find that control of production terms (constant control) is effective in generating or suppressing sustained oscillations, while control of decay terms (linear control) is not effective. We derive an easily calculated condition to determine an effective constant control. As an example, we apply our analysis to a model of the carbon response network in Escherichia coli, reduced to the two genes that are essential in understanding its behavior.

  6. Design of artificial genetic regulatory networks with multiple delayed adaptive responses*

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaluza, Pablo; Inoue, Masayo

    2016-06-01

    Genetic regulatory networks with adaptive responses are widely studied in biology. Usually, models consisting only of a few nodes have been considered. They present one input receptor for activation and one output node where the adaptive response is computed. In this work, we design genetic regulatory networks with many receptors and many output nodes able to produce delayed adaptive responses. This design is performed by using an evolutionary algorithm of mutations and selections that minimizes an error function defined by the adaptive response in signal shapes. We present several examples of network constructions with a predefined required set of adaptive delayed responses. We show that an output node can have different kinds of responses as a function of the activated receptor. Additionally, complex network structures are presented since processing nodes can be involved in several input-output pathways. Supplementary material in the form of one nets file available from the Journal web page at http://dx.doi.org/10.1140/epjb/e2016-70172-9

  7. Exploring regulatory networks of miR-96 in the developing inner ear

    PubMed Central

    Lewis, Morag A.; Buniello, Annalisa; Hilton, Jennifer M.; Zhu, Fei; Zhang, William I.; Evans, Stephanie; van Dongen, Stijn; Enright, Anton J.; Steel, Karen P.

    2016-01-01

    Mutations in the microRNA Mir96 cause deafness in mice and humans. In the diminuendo mouse, which carries a single base pair change in the seed region of miR-96, the sensory hair cells crucial for hearing fail to develop fully and retain immature characteristics, suggesting that miR-96 is important for coordinating hair cell maturation. Our previous transcriptional analyses show that many genes are misregulated in the diminuendo inner ear and we report here further misregulated genes. We have chosen three complementary approaches to explore potential networks controlled by miR-96 using these transcriptional data. Firstly, we used regulatory interactions manually curated from the literature to construct a regulatory network incorporating our transcriptional data. Secondly, we built a protein-protein interaction network using the InnateDB database. Thirdly, gene set enrichment analysis was used to identify gene sets in which the misregulated genes are enriched. We have identified several candidates for mediating some of the expression changes caused by the diminuendo mutation, including Fos, Myc, Trp53 and Nr3c1, and confirmed our prediction that Fos is downregulated in diminuendo homozygotes. Understanding the pathways regulated by miR-96 could lead to potential therapeutic targets for treating hearing loss due to perturbation of any component of the network. PMID:26988146

  8. Dynamical properties of gene regulatory networks involved in long-term potentiation

    PubMed Central

    Nido, Gonzalo S.; Ryan, Margaret M.; Benuskova, Lubica; Williams, Joanna M.

    2015-01-01

    The long-lasting enhancement of synaptic effectiveness known as long-term potentiation (LTP) is considered to be the cellular basis of long-term memory. LTP elicits changes at the cellular and molecular level, including temporally specific alterations in gene networks. LTP can be seen as a biological process in which a transient signal sets a new homeostatic state that is “remembered” by cellular regulatory systems. Previously, we have shown that early growth response (Egr) transcription factors are of fundamental importance to gene networks recruited early after LTP induction. From a systems perspective, we hypothesized that these networks will show less stable architecture, while networks recruited later will exhibit increased stability, being more directly related to LTP consolidation. Using random Boolean network (RBN) simulations we found that the network derived at 24 h was markedly more stable than those derived at 20 min or 5 h post-LTP. This temporal effect on the vulnerability of the networks is mirrored by what is known about the vulnerability of LTP and memory itself. Differential gene co-expression analysis further highlighted the importance of the Egr family and found a rapid enrichment in connectivity at 20 min, followed by a systematic decrease, providing a potential explanation for the down-regulation of gene expression at 24 h documented in our preceding studies. We also found that the architecture exhibited by a control and the 24 h LTP co-expression networks fit well to a scale-free distribution, known to be robust against perturbations. By contrast the 20 min and 5 h networks showed more truncated distributions. These results suggest that a new homeostatic state is achieved 24 h post-LTP. Together, these data present an integrated view of the genomic response following LTP induction by which the stability of the networks regulated at different times parallel the properties observed at the synapse. PMID:26300724

  9. Gene regulatory networks in differentiation and direct reprogramming of hepatic cells.

    PubMed

    Gérard, Claude; Tys, Janne; Lemaigre, Frédéric P

    2016-12-12

    Liver development proceeds by sequential steps during which gene regulatory networks (GRNs) determine differentiation and maturation of hepatic cells. Characterizing the architecture and dynamics of these networks is essential for understanding how cell fate decisions are made during development, and for recapitulating these processes during in vitro production of liver cells for toxicology studies, disease modelling and regenerative therapy. Here we review the GRNs that control key steps of liver development and lead to differentiation of hepatocytes and cholangiocytes in mammals. We focus on GRNs determining cell fate decisions and analyse subcircuitry motifs that may confer specific dynamic properties to the networks. Finally, we put our analysis in the perspective of recent attempts to directly reprogram cells to hepatocytes by forced expression of transcription factors.

  10. Gene regulatory network clustering for graph layout based on microarray gene expression data.

    PubMed

    Kojima, Kaname; Imoto, Seiya; Nagasaki, Masao; Miyano, Satoru

    2010-01-01

    We propose a statistical model realizing simultaneous estimation of gene regulatory network and gene module identification from time series gene expression data from microarray experiments. Under the assumption that genes in the same module are densely connected, the proposed method detects gene modules based on the variational Bayesian technique. The model can also incorporate existing biological prior knowledge such as protein subcellular localization. We apply the proposed model to the time series data from a synthetically generated network and verified the effectiveness of the proposed model. The proposed model is also applied the time series microarray data from HeLa cell. Detected gene module information gives the great help on drawing the estimated gene network.

  11. Conservation and Diversification of an Ancestral Chordate Gene Regulatory Network for Dorsoventral Patterning

    PubMed Central

    Kozmikova, Iryna; Smolikova, Jana; Vlcek, Cestmir; Kozmik, Zbynek

    2011-01-01

    Formation of a dorsoventral axis is a key event in the early development of most animal embryos. It is well established that bone morphogenetic proteins (Bmps) and Wnts are key mediators of dorsoventral patterning in vertebrates. In the cephalochordate amphioxus, genes encoding Bmps and transcription factors downstream of Bmp signaling such as Vent are expressed in patterns reminiscent of those of their vertebrate orthologues. However, the key question is whether the conservation of expression patterns of network constituents implies conservation of functional network interactions, and if so, how an increased functional complexity can evolve. Using heterologous systems, namely by reporter gene assays in mammalian cell lines and by transgenesis in medaka fish, we have compared the gene regulatory network implicated in dorsoventral patterning of the basal chordate amphioxus and vertebrates. We found that Bmp but not canonical Wnt signaling regulates promoters of genes encoding homeodomain proteins AmphiVent1 and AmphiVent2. Furthermore, AmphiVent1 and AmphiVent2 promoters appear to be correctly regulated in the context of a vertebrate embryo. Finally, we show that AmphiVent1 is able to directly repress promoters of AmphiGoosecoid and AmphiChordin genes. Repression of genes encoding dorsal-specific signaling molecule Chordin and transcription factor Goosecoid by Xenopus and zebrafish Vent genes represents a key regulatory interaction during vertebrate axis formation. Our data indicate high evolutionary conservation of a core Bmp-triggered gene regulatory network for dorsoventral patterning in chordates and suggest that co-option of the canonical Wnt signaling pathway for dorsoventral patterning in vertebrates represents one of the innovations through which an increased morphological complexity of vertebrate embryo is achieved. PMID:21304903

  12. Gene regulatory effects of disease-associated variation in the NRF2 network.

    PubMed

    Lacher, Sarah E; Slattery, Matthew

    2016-12-01

    Reactive oxygen species (ROS), which are both a natural byproduct of oxidative metabolism and an undesirable byproduct of many environmental stressors, can damage all classes of cellular macromolecules and promote diseases from cancer to neurodegeneration. The actions of ROS are mitigated by the transcription factor NRF2, which regulates expression of antioxidant genes via its interaction with cis-regulatory antioxidant response elements (AREs). However, despite the seemingly straightforward relationship between the opposing forces of ROS and NRF2, regulatory precision in the NRF2 network is essential. Genetic variants that alter NRF2 stability or alter ARE sequences have been linked to a range of diseases. NRF2 hyperactivating mutations are associated with tumorigenesis. On the subtler end of the spectrum, single nucleotide variants (SNVs) that alter individual ARE sequences have been linked to neurodegenerative disorders including progressive supranuclear palsy and Parkinson's disease, as well as other diseases. Although the human health implications of NRF2 dysregulation have been recognized for some time, a systems level view of this regulatory network is beginning to highlight key NRF2-targeted AREs consistently associated with disease.

  13. A Machine Learning Approach to Predict Gene Regulatory Networks in Seed Development in Arabidopsis

    PubMed Central

    Ni, Ying; Aghamirzaie, Delasa; Elmarakeby, Haitham; Collakova, Eva; Li, Song; Grene, Ruth; Heath, Lenwood S.

    2016-01-01

    Gene regulatory networks (GRNs) provide a representation of relationships between regulators and their target genes. Several methods for GRN inference, both unsupervised and supervised, have been developed to date. Because regulatory relationships consistently reprogram in diverse tissues or under different conditions, GRNs inferred without specific biological contexts are of limited applicability. In this report, a machine learning approach is presented to predict GRNs specific to developing Arabidopsis thaliana embryos. We developed the Beacon GRN inference tool to predict GRNs occurring during seed development in Arabidopsis based on a support vector machine (SVM) model. We developed both global and local inference models and compared their performance, demonstrating that local models are generally superior for our application. Using both the expression levels of the genes expressed in developing embryos and prior known regulatory relationships, GRNs were predicted for specific embryonic developmental stages. The targets that are strongly positively correlated with their regulators are mostly expressed at the beginning of seed development. Potential direct targets were identified based on a match between the promoter regions of these inferred targets and the cis elements recognized by specific regulators. Our analysis also provides evidence for previously unknown inhibitory effects of three positive regulators of gene expression. The Beacon GRN inference tool provides a valuable model system for context-specific GRN inference and is freely available at https://github.com/BeaconProjectAtVirginiaTech/beacon_network_inference.git. PMID:28066488

  14. TIGER: Toolbox for integrating genome-scale metabolic models, expression data, and transcriptional regulatory networks

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Several methods have been developed for analyzing genome-scale models of metabolism and transcriptional regulation. Many of these methods, such as Flux Balance Analysis, use constrained optimization to predict relationships between metabolic flux and the genes that encode and regulate enzyme activity. Recently, mixed integer programming has been used to encode these gene-protein-reaction (GPR) relationships into a single optimization problem, but these techniques are often of limited generality and lack a tool for automating the conversion of rules to a coupled regulatory/metabolic model. Results We present TIGER, a Toolbox for Integrating Genome-scale Metabolism, Expression, and Regulation. TIGER converts a series of generalized, Boolean or multilevel rules into a set of mixed integer inequalities. The package also includes implementations of existing algorithms to integrate high-throughput expression data with genome-scale models of metabolism and transcriptional regulation. We demonstrate how TIGER automates the coupling of a genome-scale metabolic model with GPR logic and models of transcriptional regulation, thereby serving as a platform for algorithm development and large-scale metabolic analysis. Additionally, we demonstrate how TIGER's algorithms can be used to identify inconsistencies and improve existing models of transcriptional regulation with examples from the reconstructed transcriptional regulatory network of Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Conclusion The TIGER package provides a consistent platform for algorithm development and extending existing genome-scale metabolic models with regulatory networks and high-throughput data. PMID:21943338

  15. A Dynamic Gene Regulatory Network Model That Recovers the Cyclic Behavior of Arabidopsis thaliana Cell Cycle.

    PubMed

    Ortiz-Gutiérrez, Elizabeth; García-Cruz, Karla; Azpeitia, Eugenio; Castillo, Aaron; Sánchez, María de la Paz; Álvarez-Buylla, Elena R

    2015-09-01

    Cell cycle control is fundamental in eukaryotic development. Several modeling efforts have been used to integrate the complex network of interacting molecular components involved in cell cycle dynamics. In this paper, we aimed at recovering the regulatory logic upstream of previously known components of cell cycle control, with the aim of understanding the mechanisms underlying the emergence of the cyclic behavior of such components. We focus on Arabidopsis thaliana, but given that many components of cell cycle regulation are conserved among eukaryotes, when experimental data for this system was not available, we considered experimental results from yeast and animal systems. We are proposing a Boolean gene regulatory network (GRN) that converges into only one robust limit cycle attractor that closely resembles the cyclic behavior of the key cell-cycle molecular components and other regulators considered here. We validate the model by comparing our in silico configurations with data from loss- and gain-of-function mutants, where the endocyclic behavior also was recovered. Additionally, we approximate a continuous model and recovered the temporal periodic expression profiles of the cell-cycle molecular components involved, thus suggesting that the single limit cycle attractor recovered with the Boolean model is not an artifact of its discrete and synchronous nature, but rather an emergent consequence of the inherent characteristics of the regulatory logic proposed here. This dynamical model, hence provides a novel theoretical framework to address cell cycle regulation in plants, and it can also be used to propose novel predictions regarding cell cycle regulation in other eukaryotes.

  16. Bioengineering and Coordination of Regulatory Networks and Intracellular Complexes to Maximize Hydrogen Production by Phototrophic Microorganisms

    SciTech Connect

    Tabita, F. Robert

    2013-07-30

    In this study, the Principal Investigator, F.R. Tabita has teemed up with J. C. Liao from UCLA. This project's main goal is to manipulate regulatory networks in phototrophic bacteria to affect and maximize the production of large amounts of hydrogen gas under conditions where wild-type organisms are constrained by inherent regulatory mechanisms from allowing this to occur. Unrestrained production of hydrogen has been achieved and this will allow for the potential utilization of waste materials as a feed stock to support hydrogen production. By further understanding the means by which regulatory networks interact, this study will seek to maximize the ability of currently available “unrestrained” organisms to produce hydrogen. The organisms to be utilized in this study, phototrophic microorganisms, in particular nonsulfur purple (NSP) bacteria, catalyze many significant processes including the assimilation of carbon dioxide into organic carbon, nitrogen fixation, sulfur oxidation, aromatic acid degradation, and hydrogen oxidation/evolution. Moreover, due to their great metabolic versatility, such organisms highly regulate these processes in the cell and since virtually all such capabilities are dispensable, excellent experimental systems to study aspects of molecular control and biochemistry/physiology are available.

  17. A Machine Learning Approach to Predict Gene Regulatory Networks in Seed Development in Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Ni, Ying; Aghamirzaie, Delasa; Elmarakeby, Haitham; Collakova, Eva; Li, Song; Grene, Ruth; Heath, Lenwood S

    2016-01-01

    Gene regulatory networks (GRNs) provide a representation of relationships between regulators and their target genes. Several methods for GRN inference, both unsupervised and supervised, have been developed to date. Because regulatory relationships consistently reprogram in diverse tissues or under different conditions, GRNs inferred without specific biological contexts are of limited applicability. In this report, a machine learning approach is presented to predict GRNs specific to developing Arabidopsis thaliana embryos. We developed the Beacon GRN inference tool to predict GRNs occurring during seed development in Arabidopsis based on a support vector machine (SVM) model. We developed both global and local inference models and compared their performance, demonstrating that local models are generally superior for our application. Using both the expression levels of the genes expressed in developing embryos and prior known regulatory relationships, GRNs were predicted for specific embryonic developmental stages. The targets that are strongly positively correlated with their regulators are mostly expressed at the beginning of seed development. Potential direct targets were identified based on a match between the promoter regions of these inferred targets and the cis elements recognized by specific regulators. Our analysis also provides evidence for previously unknown inhibitory effects of three positive regulators of gene expression. The Beacon GRN inference tool provides a valuable model system for context-specific GRN inference and is freely available at https://github.com/BeaconProjectAtVirginiaTech/beacon_network_inference.git.

  18. Reducing the computational complexity of information theoretic approaches for reconstructing gene regulatory networks.

    PubMed

    Qiu, Peng; Gentles, Andrew J; Plevritis, Sylvia K

    2010-02-01

    Information theoretic approaches are increasingly being used for reconstructing regulatory networks from microarray data. These approaches start by computing the pairwise mutual information (MI) between all gene pairs. The resulting MI matrix is then manipulated to identify regulatory relationships. A barrier to these approaches is the time-consuming step of computing the MI matrix. We present a method to reduce this computation time. We apply spectral analysis to re-order the genes, so that genes that share regulatory relationships are more likely to be placed close to each other. Then, using a "sliding window" approach with appropriate window size and step size, we compute the MI for the genes within the sliding window, and the remainder is assumed to be zero. Using both simulated data and microarray data, we demonstrate that our method does not incur performance loss in regions of high-precision and low-recall, while the computational time is significantly lowered. The proposed method can be used with any method that relies on the mutual information to reconstruct networks.

  19. Two different modes of oscillation in a gene transcription regulatory network with interlinked positive and negative feedback loops

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karmakar, Rajesh

    2016-12-01

    We study the oscillatory behavior of a gene regulatory network with interlinked positive and negative feedback loop. The frequency and amplitude are two important properties of oscillation. The studied network produces two different modes of oscillation. In one mode (mode-I), frequency of oscillation remains constant over a wide range of amplitude and in the other mode (mode-II) the amplitude of oscillation remains constant over a wide range of frequency. Our study reproduces both features of oscillations in a single gene regulatory network and shows that the negative plus positive feedback loops in gene regulatory network offer additional advantage. We identified the key parameters/variables responsible for different modes of oscillation. The network is flexible in switching between different modes by choosing appropriately the required parameters/variables.

  20. Developmental gene regulatory network architecture across 500 million years of echinoderm evolution

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hinman, Veronica F.; Nguyen, Albert T.; Cameron, R. Andrew; Davidson, Eric H.

    2003-01-01

    Evolutionary change in morphological features must depend on architectural reorganization of developmental gene regulatory networks (GRNs), just as true conservation of morphological features must imply retention of ancestral developmental GRN features. Key elements of the provisional GRN for embryonic endomesoderm development in the sea urchin are here compared with those operating in embryos of a distantly related echinoderm, a starfish. These animals diverged from their common ancestor 520-480 million years ago. Their endomesodermal fate maps are similar, except that sea urchins generate a skeletogenic cell lineage that produces a prominent skeleton lacking entirely in starfish larvae. A relevant set of regulatory genes was isolated from the starfish Asterina miniata, their expression patterns determined, and effects on the other genes of perturbing the expression of each were demonstrated. A three-gene feedback loop that is a fundamental feature of the sea urchin GRN for endoderm specification is found in almost identical form in the starfish: a detailed element of GRN architecture has been retained since the Cambrian Period in both echinoderm lineages. The significance of this retention is highlighted by the observation of numerous specific differences in the GRN connections as well. A regulatory gene used to drive skeletogenesis in the sea urchin is used entirely differently in the starfish, where it responds to endomesodermal inputs that do not affect it in the sea urchin embryo. Evolutionary changes in the GRNs since divergence are limited sharply to certain cis-regulatory elements, whereas others have persisted unaltered.

  1. Developmental gene regulatory network architecture across 500 million years of echinoderm evolution.

    PubMed

    Hinman, Veronica F; Nguyen, Albert T; Cameron, R Andrew; Davidson, Eric H

    2003-11-11

    Evolutionary change in morphological features must depend on architectural reorganization of developmental gene regulatory networks (GRNs), just as true conservation of morphological features must imply retention of ancestral developmental GRN features. Key elements of the provisional GRN for embryonic endomesoderm development in the sea urchin are here compared with those operating in embryos of a distantly related echinoderm, a starfish. These animals diverged from their common ancestor 520-480 million years ago. Their endomesodermal fate maps are similar, except that sea urchins generate a skeletogenic cell lineage that produces a prominent skeleton lacking entirely in starfish larvae. A relevant set of regulatory genes was isolated from the starfish Asterina miniata, their expression patterns determined, and effects on the other genes of perturbing the expression of each were demonstrated. A three-gene feedback loop that is a fundamental feature of the sea urchin GRN for endoderm specification is found in almost identical form in the starfish: a detailed element of GRN architecture has been retained since the Cambrian Period in both echinoderm lineages. The significance of this retention is highlighted by the observation of numerous specific differences in the GRN connections as well. A regulatory gene used to drive skeletogenesis in the sea urchin is used entirely differently in the starfish, where it responds to endomesodermal inputs that do not affect it in the sea urchin embryo. Evolutionary changes in the GRNs since divergence are limited sharply to certain cis-regulatory elements, whereas others have persisted unaltered.

  2. Evolution of gene regulatory network architectures: examples of subcircuit conservation and plasticity between classes of echinoderms.

    PubMed

    Hinman, Veronica F; Yankura, Kristen A; McCauley, Brenna S

    2009-04-01

    Developmental gene regulatory networks (GRNs) explain how regulatory states are established in particular cells during development and how these states then determine the final form of the embryo. Evolutionary changes to the sequence of the genome will direct reorganization of GRN architectures, which in turn will lead to the alteration of developmental programs. A comparison of GRN architectures must consequently reveal the molecular basis for the evolution of developmental programs among different organisms. This review highlights some of the important findings that have emerged from the most extensive direct comparison of GRN architectures to date. Comparison of the orthologous GRNs for endomesodermal specification in the sea urchin and sea star, provides examples of several discrete, functional GRN subcircuits and shows that they are subject to diverse selective pressures. This demonstrates that different regulatory linkages may be more or less amenable to evolutionary change. One of the more surprising findings from this comparison is that GRN-level functions may be maintained while the factors performing the functions have changed, suggesting that GRNs have a high capacity for compensatory changes involving transcription factor binding to cis regulatory modules.

  3. Augmenting Microarray Data with Literature-Based Knowledge to Enhance Gene Regulatory Network Inference

    PubMed Central

    Kilicoglu, Halil; Shin, Dongwook; Rindflesch, Thomas C.

    2014-01-01

    Gene regulatory networks are a crucial aspect of systems biology in describing molecular mechanisms of the cell. Various computational models rely on random gene selection to infer such networks from microarray data. While incorporation of prior knowledge into data analysis has been deemed important, in practice, it has generally been limited to referencing genes in probe sets and using curated knowledge bases. We investigate the impact of augmenting microarray data with semantic relations automatically extracted from the literature, with the view that relations encoding gene/protein interactions eliminate the need for random selection of components in non-exhaustive approaches, producing a more accurate model of cellular behavior. A genetic algorithm is then used to optimize the strength of interactions using microarray data and an artificial neural network fitness function. The result is a directed and weighted network providing the individual contribution of each gene to its target. For testing, we used invasive ductile carcinoma of the breast to query the literature and a microarray set containing gene expression changes in these cells over several time points. Our model demonstrates significantly better fitness than the state-of-the-art model, which relies on an initial random selection of genes. Comparison to the component pathways of the KEGG Pathways in Cancer map reveals that the resulting networks contain both known and novel relationships. The p53 pathway results were manually validated in the literature. 60% of non-KEGG relationships were supported (74% for highly weighted interactions). The method was then applied to yeast data and our model again outperformed the comparison model. Our results demonstrate the advantage of combining gene interactions extracted from the literature in the form of semantic relations with microarray analysis in generating contribution-weighted gene regulatory networks. This methodology can make a significant contribution to

  4. A Functionally Conserved Gene Regulatory Network Module Governing Olfactory Neuron Diversity

    PubMed Central

    Okuwa, Sumie; Maciejewski, Abigail; Brandt, Alicia T.; Reinhold, Dominik; Jones, Corbin D.; Volkan, Pelin Cayirlioglu

    2016-01-01

    Sensory neuron diversity is required for organisms to decipher complex environmental cues. In Drosophila, the olfactory environment is detected by 50 different olfactory receptor neuron (ORN) classes that are clustered in combinations within distinct sensilla subtypes. Each sensilla subtype houses stereotypically clustered 1–4 ORN identities that arise through asymmetric divisions from a single multipotent sensory organ precursor (SOP). How each class of SOPs acquires a unique differentiation potential that accounts for ORN diversity is unknown. Previously, we reported a critical component of SOP diversification program, Rotund (Rn), increases ORN diversity by generating novel developmental trajectories from existing precursors within each independent sensilla type lineages. Here, we show that Rn, along with BarH1/H2 (Bar), Bric-à-brac (Bab), Apterous (Ap) and Dachshund (Dac), constitutes a transcription factor (TF) network that patterns the developing olfactory tissue. This network was previously shown to pattern the segmentation of the leg, which suggests that this network is functionally conserved. In antennal imaginal discs, precursors with diverse ORN differentiation potentials are selected from concentric rings defined by unique combinations of these TFs along the proximodistal axis of the developing antennal disc. The combinatorial code that demarcates each precursor field is set up by cross-regulatory interactions among different factors within the network. Modifications of this network lead to predictable changes in the diversity of sensilla subtypes and ORN pools. In light of our data, we propose a molecular map that defines each unique SOP fate. Our results highlight the importance of the early prepatterning gene regulatory network as a modulator of SOP and terminally differentiated ORN diversity. Finally, our model illustrates how conserved developmental strategies are used to generate neuronal diversity. PMID:26765103

  5. Porcine Tissue-Specific Regulatory Networks Derived from Meta-Analysis of the Transcriptome

    PubMed Central

    Pérez-Montarelo, Dafne; Hudson, Nicholas J.; Fernández, Ana I.; Ramayo-Caldas, Yuliaxis; Dalrymple, Brian P.; Reverter, Antonio

    2012-01-01

    The processes that drive tissue identity and differentiation remain unclear for most tissue types. So are the gene networks and transcription factors (TF) responsible for the differential structure and function of each particular tissue, and this is particularly true for non model species with incomplete genomic resources. To better understand the regulation of genes responsible for tissue identity in pigs, we have inferred regulatory networks from a meta-analysis of 20 gene expression studies spanning 480 Porcine Affymetrix chips for 134 experimental conditions on 27 distinct tissues. We developed a mixed-model normalization approach with a covariance structure that accommodated the disparity in the origin of the individual studies, and obtained the normalized expression of 12,320 genes across the 27 tissues. Using this resource, we constructed a network, based on the co-expression patterns of 1,072 TF and 1,232 tissue specific genes. The resulting network is consistent with the known biology of tissue development. Within the network, genes clustered by tissue and tissues clustered by site of embryonic origin. These clusters were significantly enriched for genes annotated in key relevant biological processes and confirm gene functions and interactions from the literature. We implemented a Regulatory Impact Factor (RIF) metric to identify the key regulators in skeletal muscle and tissues from the central nervous systems. The normalization of the meta-analysis, the inference of the gene co-expression network and the RIF metric, operated synergistically towards a successful search for tissue-specific regulators. Novel among these findings are evidence suggesting a novel key role of ERCC3 as a muscle regulator. Together, our results recapitulate the known biology behind tissue specificity and provide new valuable insights in a less studied but valuable model species. PMID:23049964

  6. A Functionally Conserved Gene Regulatory Network Module Governing Olfactory Neuron Diversity.

    PubMed

    Li, Qingyun; Barish, Scott; Okuwa, Sumie; Maciejewski, Abigail; Brandt, Alicia T; Reinhold, Dominik; Jones, Corbin D; Volkan, Pelin Cayirlioglu

    2016-01-01

    Sensory neuron diversity is required for organisms to decipher complex environmental cues. In Drosophila, the olfactory environment is detected by 50 different olfactory receptor neuron (ORN) classes that are clustered in combinations within distinct sensilla subtypes. Each sensilla subtype houses stereotypically clustered 1-4 ORN identities that arise through asymmetric divisions from a single multipotent sensory organ precursor (SOP). How each class of SOPs acquires a unique differentiation potential that accounts for ORN diversity is unknown. Previously, we reported a critical component of SOP diversification program, Rotund (Rn), increases ORN diversity by generating novel developmental trajectories from existing precursors within each independent sensilla type lineages. Here, we show that Rn, along with BarH1/H2 (Bar), Bric-à-brac (Bab), Apterous (Ap) and Dachshund (Dac), constitutes a transcription factor (TF) network that patterns the developing olfactory tissue. This network was previously shown to pattern the segmentation of the leg, which suggests that this network is functionally conserved. In antennal imaginal discs, precursors with diverse ORN differentiation potentials are selected from concentric rings defined by unique combinations of these TFs along the proximodistal axis of the developing antennal disc. The combinatorial code that demarcates each precursor field is set up by cross-regulatory interactions among different factors within the network. Modifications of this network lead to predictable changes in the diversity of sensilla subtypes and ORN pools. In light of our data, we propose a molecular map that defines each unique SOP fate. Our results highlight the importance of the early prepatterning gene regulatory network as a modulator of SOP and terminally differentiated ORN diversity. Finally, our model illustrates how conserved developmental strategies are used to generate neuronal diversity.

  7. Simulating microinjection experiments in a novel model of the rat sleep-wake regulatory network.

    PubMed

    Diniz Behn, Cecilia G; Booth, Victoria

    2010-04-01

    This study presents a novel mathematical modeling framework that is uniquely suited to investigating the structure and dynamics of the sleep-wake regulatory network in the brain stem and hypothalamus. It is based on a population firing rate model formalism that is modified to explicitly include concentration levels of neurotransmitters released to postsynaptic populations. Using this framework, interactions among primary brain stem and hypothalamic neuronal nuclei involved in rat sleep-wake regulation are modeled. The model network captures realistic rat polyphasic sleep-wake behavior consisting of wake, rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, and non-REM (NREM) sleep states. Network dynamics include a cyclic pattern of NREM sleep, REM sleep, and wake states that is disrupted by simulated variability of neurotransmitter release and external noise to the network. Explicit modeling of neurotransmitter concentrations allows for simulations of microinjections of neurotransmitter agonists and antagonists into a key wake-promoting population, the locus coeruleus (LC). Effects of these simulated microinjections on sleep-wake states are tracked and compared with experimental observations. Agonist/antagonist pairs, which are presumed to have opposing effects on LC activity, do not generally induce opposing effects on sleep-wake patterning because of multiple mechanisms for LC activation in the network. Also, different agents, which are presumed to have parallel effects on LC activity, do not induce parallel effects on sleep-wake patterning because of differences in the state dependence or independence of agonist and antagonist action. These simulation results highlight the utility of formal mathematical modeling for constraining conceptual models of the sleep-wake regulatory network.

  8. Inference of Gene Regulatory Networks Based on a Universal Minimum Description Length

    PubMed Central

    2008-01-01

    The Boolean network paradigm is a simple and effective way to interpret genomic systems, but discovering the structure of these networks remains a difficult task. The minimum description length (MDL) principle has already been used for inferring genetic regulatory networks from time-series expression data and has proven useful for recovering the directed connections in Boolean networks. However, the existing method uses an ad hoc measure of description length that necessitates a tuning parameter for artificially balancing the model and error costs and, as a result, directly conflicts with the MDL principle's implied universality. In order to surpass this difficulty, we propose a novel MDL-based method in which the description length is a theoretical measure derived from a universal normalized maximum likelihood model. The search space is reduced by applying an implementable analogue of Kolmogorov's structure function. The performance of the proposed method is demonstrated on random synthetic networks, for which it is shown to improve upon previously published network inference algorithms with respect to both speed and accuracy. Finally, it is applied to time-series Drosophila gene expression measurements. PMID:18437238

  9. Nitrosylation of c heme in cd(1)-nitrite reductase is enhanced during catalysis.

    PubMed

    Rinaldo, Serena; Giardina, Giorgio; Cutruzzolà, Francesca

    2014-08-29

    The reduction of nitrite into nitric oxide (NO) in denitrifying bacteria is catalyzed by nitrite reductase. In several species, this enzyme is a heme-containing protein with one c heme and one d1 heme per monomer (cd1NiR), encoded by the nirS gene. For many years, the evidence of a link between NO and this hemeprotein represented a paradox, given that NO was known to tightly bind and, possibly, inhibit hemeproteins, including cd1NiRs. It is now established that, during catalysis, cd1NiRs diverge from "canonical" hemeproteins, since the product NO rapidly dissociates from the ferrous d1 heme, which, in turn, displays a peculiar "low" affinity for NO (KD=0.11 μM at pH 7.0). It has been also previously shown that the c heme reacts with NO at acidic pH but c heme nitrosylation was not extensively investigated, given that in cd1NiR it was considered a side reaction, rather than a genuine process controlling catalysis. The spectroscopic study of the reaction of cd1NiR and its semi-apo derivative (containing the sole c heme) with NO reported here shows that c heme nitrosylation is enhanced during catalysis; this evidence has been discussed in order to assess the potential of c heme nitrosylation as a regulatory process, as observed for cytochrome c nitrosylation in mammalian mitochondria.

  10. A heme-binding domain controls regulation of ATP-dependent potassium channels

    PubMed Central

    Burton, Mark J.; Kapetanaki, Sofia M.; Chernova, Tatyana; Jamieson, Andrew G.; Dorlet, Pierre; Santolini, Jérôme; Mitcheson, John S.; Davies, Noel W.; Schmid, Ralf; Raven, Emma L.; Storey, Nina M.

    2016-01-01

    Heme iron has many and varied roles in biology. Most commonly it binds as a prosthetic group to proteins, and it has been widely supposed and amply demonstrated that subtle variations in the protein structure around the heme, including the heme ligands, are used to control the reactivity of the metal ion. However, the role of heme in biology now appears to also include a regulatory responsibility in the cell; this includes regulation of ion channel function. In this work, we show that cardiac KATP channels are regulated by heme. We identify a cytoplasmic heme-binding CXXHX16H motif on the sulphonylurea receptor subunit of the channel, and mutagenesis together with quantitative and spectroscopic analyses of heme-binding and single channel experiments identified Cys628 and His648 as important for heme binding. We discuss the wider implications of these findings and we use the information to present hypotheses for mechanisms of heme-dependent regulation across other ion channels. PMID:27006498

  11. High-resolution analysis of cis-acting regulatory networks at the α-globin locus.

    PubMed

    Hughes, Jim R; Lower, Karen M; Dunham, Ian; Taylor, Stephen; De Gobbi, Marco; Sloane-Stanley, Jacqueline A; McGowan, Simon; Ragoussis, Jiannis; Vernimmen, Douglas; Gibbons, Richard J; Higgs, Douglas R

    2013-01-01

    We have combined the circular chromosome conformation capture protocol with high-throughput, genome-wide sequence analysis to characterize the cis-acting regulatory network at a single locus. In contrast to methods which identify large interacting regions (10-1000 kb), the 4C approach provides a comprehensive, high-resolution analysis of a specific locus with the aim of defining, in detail, the cis-regulatory elements controlling a single gene or gene cluster. Using the human α-globin locus as a model, we detected all known local and long-range interactions with this gene cluster. In addition, we identified two interactions with genes located 300 kb (NME4) and 625 kb (FAM173a) from the α-globin cluster.

  12. Large-scale genetic perturbations reveal regulatory networks and an abundance of gene-specific repressors.

    PubMed

    Kemmeren, Patrick; Sameith, Katrin; van de Pasch, Loes A L; Benschop, Joris J; Lenstra, Tineke L; Margaritis, Thanasis; O'Duibhir, Eoghan; Apweiler, Eva; van Wageningen, Sake; Ko, Cheuk W; van Heesch, Sebastiaan; Kashani, Mehdi M; Ampatziadis-Michailidis, Giannis; Brok, Mariel O; Brabers, Nathalie A C H; Miles, Anthony J; Bouwmeester, Diane; van Hooff, Sander R; van Bakel, Harm; Sluiters, Erik; Bakker, Linda V; Snel, Berend; Lijnzaad, Philip; van Leenen, Dik; Groot Koerkamp, Marian J A; Holstege, Frank C P

    2014-04-24

    To understand regulatory systems, it would be useful to uniformly determine how different components contribute to the expression of all other genes. We therefore monitored mRNA expression genome-wide, for individual deletions of one-quarter of yeast genes, focusing on (putative) regulators. The resulting genetic perturbation signatures reflect many different properties. These include the architecture of protein complexes and pathways, identification of expression changes compatible with viability, and the varying responsiveness to genetic perturbation. The data are assembled into a genetic perturbation network that shows different connectivities for different classes of regulators. Four feed-forward loop (FFL) types are overrepresented, including incoherent type 2 FFLs that likely represent feedback. Systematic transcription factor classification shows a surprisingly high abundance of gene-specific repressors, suggesting that yeast chromatin is not as generally restrictive to transcription as is often assumed. The data set is useful for studying individual genes and for discovering properties of an entire regulatory system.

  13. Adaptive modelling of gene regulatory network using Bayesian information criterion-guided sparse regression approach.

    PubMed

    Shi, Ming; Shen, Weiming; Wang, Hong-Qiang; Chong, Yanwen

    2016-12-01

    Inferring gene regulatory networks (GRNs) from microarray expression data are an important but challenging issue in systems biology. In this study, the authors propose a Bayesian information criterion (BIC)-guided sparse regression approach for GRN reconstruction. This approach can adaptively model GRNs by optimising the l1-norm regularisation of sparse regression based on a modified version of BIC. The use of the regularisation strategy ensures the inferred GRNs to be as sparse as natural, while the modified BIC allows incorporating prior knowledge on expression regulation and thus avoids the overestimation of expression regulators as usual. Especially, the proposed method provides a clear interpretation of combinatorial regulations of gene expression by optimally extracting regulation coordination for a given target gene. Experimental results on both simulation data and real-world microarray data demonstrate the competent performance of discovering regulatory relationships in GRN reconstruction.

  14. A Hox regulatory network of hindbrain segmentation is conserved to the base of vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Parker, Hugo J; Bronner, Marianne E; Krumlauf, Robb

    2014-10-23

    A defining feature governing head patterning of jawed vertebrates is a highly conserved gene regulatory network that integrates hindbrain segmentation with segmentally restricted domains of Hox gene expression. Although non-vertebrate chordates display nested domains of axial Hox expression, they lack hindbrain segmentation. The sea lamprey, a jawless fish, can provide unique insights into vertebrate origins owing to its phylogenetic position at the base of the vertebrate tree. It has been suggested that lamprey may represent an intermediate state where nested Hox expression has not been coupled to the process of hindbrain segmentation. However, little is known about the regulatory network underlying Hox expression in lamprey or its relationship to hindbrain segmentation. Here, using a novel tool that allows cross-species comparisons of regulatory elements between jawed and jawless vertebrates, we report deep conservation of both upstream regulators and segmental activity of enhancer elements across these distant species. Regulatory regions from diverse gnathostomes drive segmental reporter expression in the lamprey hindbrain and require the same transcriptional inputs (for example, Kreisler (also known as Mafba), Krox20 (also known as Egr2a)) in both lamprey and zebrafish. We find that lamprey hox genes display dynamic segmentally restricted domains of expression; we also isolated a conserved exonic hox2 enhancer from lamprey that drives segmental expression in rhombomeres 2 and 4. Our results show that coupling of Hox gene expression to segmentation of the hindbrain is an ancient trait with origin at the base of vertebrates that probably led to the formation of rhombomeric compartments with an underlying Hox code.

  15. Systems and Evolutionary Characterization of MicroRNAs and Their Underlying Regulatory Networks in Soybean Cotyledons

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Zongrang; Xia, Jing; Zhang, Weixiong; Zhao, Patrick X.

    2014-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are an emerging class of small RNAs regulating a wide range of biological processes. Soybean cotyledons evolved as sink tissues to synthesize and store seed reserves which directly affect soybean seed yield and quality. However, little is known about miRNAs and their regulatory networks in soybean cotyledons. We sequenced 292 million small RNA reads expressed in soybean cotyledons, and discovered 130 novel miRNA genes and 72 novel miRNA families. The cotyledon miRNAs arose at various stages of land plant evolution. Evolutionary analysis of the miRNA genes in duplicated genome segments from the recent Glycine whole genome duplication revealed that the majority of novel soybean cotyledon miRNAs were young, and likely arose after the duplication event 13 million years ago. We revealed the evolutionary pathway of a soybean cotyledon miRNA family (soy-miR15/49) that evolved from a neutral invertase gene through an inverted duplication and a series of DNA amplification and deletion events. A total of 304 miRNA genes were expressed in soybean cotyledons. The miRNAs were predicted to target 1910 genes, and form complex miRNA networks regulating a wide range of biological pathways in cotyledons. The comprehensive characterization of the miRNAs and their underlying regulatory networks at gene, pathway and system levels provides a foundation for further studies of miRNAs in cotyledons. PMID:24475082

  16. Data-based Reconstruction of Gene Regulatory Networks of Fungal Pathogens

    PubMed Central

    Guthke, Reinhard; Gerber, Silvia; Conrad, Theresia; Vlaic, Sebastian; Durmuş, Saliha; Çakır, Tunahan; Sevilgen, F. E.; Shelest, Ekaterina; Linde, Jörg

    2016-01-01

    In the emerging field of systems biology of fungal infection, one of the central roles belongs to the modeling of gene regulatory networks (GRNs). Utilizing omics-data, GRNs can be predicted by mathematical modeling. Here, we review current advances of data-based reconstruction of both small-scale and large-scale GRNs for human pathogenic fungi. The advantage of large-scale genome-wide modeling is the possibility to predict central (hub) genes and thereby indicate potential biomarkers and drug targets. In contrast, small-scale GRN models provide hypotheses on the mode of gene regulatory interactions, which have to be validated experimentally. Due to the lack of sufficient quantity and quality of both experimental data and prior knowledge about regulator–target gene relations, the genome-wide modeling still remains problematic for fungal pathogens. While a first genome-wide GRN model has already been published for Candida albicans, the feasibility of such modeling for Aspergillus fumigatus is evaluated in the present article. Based on this evaluation, opinions are drawn on future directions of GRN modeling of fungal pathogens. The crucial point of genome-wide GRN modeling is the experimental evidence, both used for inferring the networks (omics ‘first-hand’ data as well as literature data used as prior knowledge) and for validation and evaluation of the inferred network models. PMID:27148247

  17. The cell envelope stress response of Bacillus subtilis: from static signaling devices to dynamic regulatory network.

    PubMed

    Radeck, Jara; Fritz, Georg; Mascher, Thorsten

    2017-02-01

    The cell envelope stress response (CESR) encompasses all regulatory events that enable a cell to protect the integrity of its envelope, an essential structure of any bacterial cell. The underlying signaling network is particularly well understood in the Gram-positive model organism Bacillus subtilis. It consists of a number of two-component systems (2CS) and extracytoplasmic function σ factors that together regulate the production of both specific resistance determinants and general mechanisms to protect the envelope against antimicrobial peptides targeting the biogenesis of the cell wall. Here, we summarize the current picture of the B. subtilis CESR network, from the initial identification of the corresponding signaling devices to unraveling their interdependence and the underlying regulatory hierarchy within the network. In the course of detailed mechanistic studies, a number of novel signaling features could be described for the 2CSs involved in mediating CESR. This includes a novel class of so-called intramembrane-sensing histidine kinases (IM-HKs), which-instead of acting as stress sensors themselves-are activated via interprotein signal transfer. Some of these IM-HKs are involved in sensing the flux of antibiotic resistance transporters, a unique mechanism of responding to extracellular antibiotic challenge.

  18. Reverse Engineering Sparse Gene Regulatory Networks Using Cubature Kalman Filter and Compressed Sensing

    PubMed Central

    Noor, Amina; Serpedin, Erchin; Nounou, Mohamed; Nounou, Hazem

    2013-01-01

    This paper proposes a novel algorithm for inferring gene regulatory networks which makes use of cubature Kalman filter (CKF) and Kalman filter (KF) techniques in conjunction with compressed sensing methods. The gene network is described using a state-space model. A nonlinear model for the evolution of gene expression is considered, while the gene expression data is assumed to follow a linear Gaussian model. The hidden states are estimated using CKF. The system parameters are modeled as a Gauss-Markov process and are estimated using compressed sensing-based KF. These parameters provide insight into the regulatory relations among the genes. The Cramér-Rao lower bound of the parameter estimates is calculated for the system model and used as a benchmark to assess the estimation accuracy. The proposed algorithm is evaluated rigorously using synthetic data in different scenarios which include different number of genes and varying number of sample points. In addition, the algorithm is tested on the DREAM4 in silico data sets as well as the in vivo data sets from IRMA network. The proposed algorithm shows superior performance in terms of accuracy, robustness, and scalability. PMID:23737768

  19. Regulatory network analysis reveals novel regulators of seed desiccation tolerance in Arabidopsis thaliana

    PubMed Central

    González-Morales, Sandra Isabel; Chávez-Montes, Ricardo A.; Hayano-Kanashiro, Corina; Alejo-Jacuinde, Gerardo; Rico-Cambron, Thelma Y.; de Folter, Stefan; Herrera-Estrella, Luis

    2016-01-01

    Desiccation tolerance (DT) is a remarkable process that allows seeds in the dry state to remain viable for long periods of time that in some instances exceed 1,000 y. It has been postulated that seed DT evolved by rewiring the regulatory and signaling networks that controlled vegetative DT, which itself emerged as a crucial adaptive trait of early land plants. Understanding the networks that regulate seed desiccation tolerance in model plant systems would provide the tools to understand an evolutionary process that played a crucial role in the diversification of flowering plants. In this work, we used an integrated approach that included genomics, bioinformatics, metabolomics, and molecular genetics to identify and validate molecular networks that control the acquisition of DT in Arabidopsis seeds. Two DT-specific transcriptional subnetworks were identified related to storage of reserve compounds and cellular protection mechanisms that act downstream of the embryo development master regulators LEAFY COTYLEDON 1 and 2, FUSCA 3, and ABSCICIC ACID INSENSITIVE 3. Among the transcription factors identified as major nodes in the DT regulatory subnetworks, PLATZ1, PLATZ2, and AGL67 were confirmed by knockout mutants and overexpression in a desiccation-intolerant mutant background to play an important role in seed DT. Additionally, we found that constitutive expression of PLATZ1 in WT plants confers partial DT in vegetative tissues. PMID:27551092

  20. Understanding microRNA-mediated gene regulatory networks through mathematical modelling

    PubMed Central

    Lai, Xin; Wolkenhauer, Olaf; Vera, Julio

    2016-01-01

    The discovery of microRNAs (miRNAs) has added a new player to the regulation of gene expression. With the increasing number of molecular species involved in gene regulatory networks, it is hard to obtain an intuitive understanding of network dynamics. Mathematical modelling can help dissecting the role of miRNAs in gene regulatory networks, and we shall here review the most recent developments that utilise different mathematical modelling approaches to provide quantitative insights into the function of miRNAs in the regulation of gene expression. Key miRNA regulation features that have been elucidated via modelling include: (i) the role of miRNA-mediated feedback and feedforward loops in fine-tuning of gene expression; (ii) the miRNA–target interaction properties determining the effectiveness of miRNA-mediated gene repression; and (iii) the competition for shared miRNAs leading to the cross-regulation of genes. However, there is still lack of mechanistic understanding of many other properties of miRNA regulation like unconventional miRNA–target interactions, miRNA regulation at different sub-cellular locations and functional miRNA variant, which will need future modelling efforts to deal with. This review provides an overview of recent developments and challenges in this field. PMID:27317695

  1. Formal modeling and analysis of ER-α associated Biological Regulatory Network in breast cancer

    PubMed Central

    Tareen, Samar H.K.; Siddiqa, Amnah; Bibi, Zurah; Ahmad, Jamil

    2016-01-01

    Background Breast cancer (BC) is one of the leading cause of death among females worldwide. The increasing incidence of BC is due to various genetic and environmental changes which lead to the disruption of cellular signaling network(s). It is a complex disease in which several interlinking signaling cascades play a crucial role in establishing a complex regulatory network. The logical modeling approach of René Thomas has been applied to analyze the behavior of estrogen receptor-alpha (ER-α) associated Biological Regulatory Network (BRN) for a small part of complex events that leads to BC metastasis. Methods A discrete model was constructed using the kinetic logic formalism and its set of logical parameters were obtained using the model checking technique implemented in the SMBioNet software which is consistent with biological observations. The discrete model was further enriched with continuous dynamics by converting it into an equivalent Petri Net (PN) to analyze the logical parameters of the involved entities. Results In-silico based discrete and continuous modeling of ER-α associated signaling network involved in BC provides information about behaviors and gene-gene interaction in detail. The dynamics of discrete model revealed, imperative behaviors represented as cyclic paths and trajectories leading to pathogenic states such as metastasis. Results suggest that the increased expressions of receptors ER-α, IGF-1R and EGFR slow down the activity of tumor suppressor genes (TSGs) such as BRCA1, p53 and Mdm2 which can lead to metastasis. Therefore, IGF-1R and EGFR are considered as important inhibitory targets to control the metastasis in BC. Conclusion The in-silico approaches allow us to increase our understanding of the functional properties of living organisms. It opens new avenues of investigations of multiple inhibitory targets (ER-α, IGF-1R and EGFR) for wet lab experiments as well as provided valuable insights in the treatment of cancers such as BC

  2. A Kalman-Filter Based Approach to Identification of Time-Varying Gene Regulatory Networks

    PubMed Central

    Xiong, Jie; Zhou, Tong

    2013-01-01

    Motivation Conventional identification methods for gene regulatory networks (GRNs) have overwhelmingly adopted static topology models, which remains unchanged over time to represent the underlying molecular interactions of a biological system. However, GRNs are dynamic in response to physiological and environmental changes. Although there is a rich literature in modeling static or temporally invariant networks, how to systematically recover these temporally changing networks remains a major and significant pressing challenge. The purpose of this study is to suggest a two-step strategy that recovers time-varying GRNs. Results It is suggested in this paper to utilize a switching auto-regressive model to describe the dynamics of time-varying GRNs, and a two-step strategy is proposed to recover the structure of time-varying GRNs. In the first step, the change points are detected by a Kalman-filter based method. The observed time series are divided into several segments using these detection results; and each time series segment belonging to two successive demarcating change points is associated with an individual static regulatory network. In the second step, conditional network structure identification methods are used to reconstruct the topology for each time interval. This two-step strategy efficiently decouples the change point detection problem and the topology inference problem. Simulation results show that the proposed strategy can detect the change points precisely and recover each individual topology structure effectively. Moreover, computation results with the developmental data of Drosophila Melanogaster show that the proposed change point detection procedure is also able to work effectively in real world applications and the change point estimation accuracy exceeds other existing approaches, which means the suggested strategy may also be helpful in solving actual GRN reconstruction problem. PMID:24116005

  3. General theory of genotype to phenotype mapping: derivation of epigenetic landscapes from N-node complex gene regulatory networks.

    PubMed

    Villarreal, Carlos; Padilla-Longoria, Pablo; Alvarez-Buylla, Elena R

    2012-09-14

    We propose a systematic methodology to construct a probabilistic epigenetic landscape of cell-fate attainment associated with N-node Boolean genetic regulatory networks. The general derivation proposed here is exemplified with an Arabidopsis thaliana network underlying floral organ determination grounded on qualitative experimental data.

  4. General Theory of Genotype to Phenotype Mapping: Derivation of Epigenetic Landscapes from N-Node Complex Gene Regulatory Networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Villarreal, Carlos; Padilla-Longoria, Pablo; Alvarez-Buylla, Elena R.

    2012-09-01

    We propose a systematic methodology to construct a probabilistic epigenetic landscape of cell-fate attainment associated with N-node Boolean genetic regulatory networks. The general derivation proposed here is exemplified with an Arabidopsis thaliana network underlying floral organ determination grounded on qualitative experimental data.

  5. Deciphering the Transcriptional-Regulatory Network of Flocculation in Schizosaccharomyces pombe

    PubMed Central

    Kwon, Eun-Joo Gina; Laderoute, Amy; Chatfield-Reed, Kate; Vachon, Lianne; Karagiannis, Jim; Chua, Gordon

    2012-01-01

    In the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe, the transcriptional-regulatory network that governs flocculation remains poorly understood. Here, we systematically screened an array of transcription factor deletion and overexpression strains for flocculation and performed microarray expression profiling and ChIP–chip analysis to identify the flocculin target genes. We identified five transcription factors that displayed novel roles in the activation or inhibition of flocculation (Rfl1, Adn2, Adn3, Sre2, and Yox1), in addition to the previously-known Mbx2, Cbf11, and Cbf12 regulators. Overexpression of mbx2+ and deletion of rfl1+ resulted in strong flocculation and transcriptional upregulation of gsf2 +/pfl1+ and several other putative flocculin genes (pfl2+–pfl9+). Overexpression of the pfl+ genes singly was sufficient to trigger flocculation, and enhanced flocculation was observed in several combinations of double pfl+ overexpression. Among the pfl1+ genes, only loss of gsf2+ abrogated the flocculent phenotype of all the transcription factor mutants and prevented flocculation when cells were grown in inducing medium containing glycerol and ethanol as the carbon source, thereby indicating that Gsf2 is the dominant flocculin. In contrast, the mild flocculation of adn2+ or adn3+ overexpression was likely mediated by the transcriptional activation of cell wall–remodeling genes including gas2+, psu1+, and SPAC4H3.03c. We also discovered that Mbx2 and Cbf12 displayed transcriptional autoregulation, and Rfl1 repressed gsf2+ expression in an inhibitory feed-forward loop involving mbx2+. These results reveal that flocculation in S. pombe is regulated by a complex network of multiple transcription factors and target genes encoding flocculins and cell wall–remodeling enzymes. Moreover, comparisons between the flocculation transcriptional-regulatory networks of Saccharomyces cerevisiae and S. pombe indicate substantial rewiring of transcription factors and cis-regulatory

  6. Integrative Analysis of Transcriptional Regulatory Network and Copy Number Variation in Intrahepatic Cholangiocarcinoma

    PubMed Central

    Li, Ling; Lian, Baofeng; Li, Chao; Li, Wei; Li, Jing; Zhang, Yuannv; He, Xianghuo; Li, Yixue; Xie, Lu

    2014-01-01

    Background Transcriptional regulatory network (TRN) is used to study conditional regulatory relationships between transcriptional factors and genes. However few studies have tried to integrate genomic variation information such as copy number variation (CNV) with TRN to find causal disturbances in a network. Intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (ICC) is the second most common hepatic carcinoma with high malignancy and poor prognosis. Research about ICC is relatively limited comparing to hepatocellular carcinoma, and there are no approved gene therapeutic targets yet. Method We first constructed TRN of ICC (ICC-TRN) using forward-and-reverse combined engineering method, and then integrated copy number variation information with ICC-TRN to select CNV-related modules and constructed CNV-ICC-TRN. We also integrated CNV-ICC-TRN with KEGG signaling pathways to investigate how CNV genes disturb signaling pathways. At last, unsupervised clustering method was applied to classify samples into distinct classes. Result We obtained CNV-ICC-TRN containing 33 modules which were enriched in ICC-related signaling pathways. Integrated analysis of the regulatory network and signaling pathways illustrated that CNV might interrupt signaling through locating on either genomic sites of nodes or regulators of nodes in a signaling pathway. In the end, expression profiles of nodes in CNV-ICC-TRN were used to cluster the ICC patients into two robust groups with distinct biological function features. Conclusion Our work represents a primary effort to construct TRN in ICC, also a primary effort to try to identify key transcriptional modules based on their involvement of genetic variations shown by gene copy number variations (CNV). This kind of approach may bring the traditional studies of TRN based only on expression data one step further to genetic disturbance. Such kind of approach can easily be extended to other disease samples with appropriate data. PMID:24897108

  7. The Legend of Sally Hemings

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Belz, Herman

    2012-01-01

    The part played by Sally Hemings in the life of Thomas Jefferson has been regarded as provocatively dubious since political enemy James Callender claimed in 1802 that Jefferson was the father of several of Hemings's children. Historian Merrill Peterson, observing that paternity is hard to prove, wrote in 1960 that no concrete evidence was ever…

  8. miRNA-Target Gene Regulatory Networks: A Bayesian Integrative Approach to Biomarker Selection with Application to Kidney Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Chekouo, Thierry; Stingo, Francesco C.; Doecke, James D.; Do, Kim-Anh

    2015-01-01

    Summary The availability of cross-platform, large-scale genomic data has enabled the investigation of complex biological relationships for many cancers. Identification of reliable cancer-related biomarkers requires the characterization of multiple interactions across complex genetic networks. MicroRNAs are small non-coding RNAs that regulate gene expression; however, the direct relationship between a microRNA and its target gene is difficult to measure. We propose a novel Bayesian model to identify microRNAs and their target genes that are associated with survival time by incorporating the microRNA regulatory network through prior distributions. We assume that biomarkers involved in regulatory networks are likely associated with survival time. We employ non-local prior distributions and a stochastic search method for the selection of biomarkers associated with the survival outcome. We use KEGG pathway information to incorporate correlated gene effects within regulatory networks. Using simulation studies, we assess the performance of our method, and apply it to experimental data of kidney renal cell carcinoma (KIRC) obtained from The Cancer Genome Atlas. Our novel method validates previously identified cancer biomarkers and identifies biomarkers specific to KIRC progression that were not previously discovered. Using the KIRC data, we confirm that biomarkers involved in regulatory networks are more likely to be associated with survival time, showing connections in one regulatory network for five out of six such genes we identified. PMID:25639276

  9. Regulatory Networks that Direct the Development of Specialized Cell Types in the Drosophila Heart

    PubMed Central

    Lovato, TyAnna L.; Cripps, Richard M.

    2016-01-01

    The Drosophila cardiac tube was once thought to be a simple linear structure, however research over the past 15 years has revealed significant cellular and molecular complexity to this organ. Prior reviews have focused upon the gene regulatory networks responsible for the specification of the cardiac field and the activation of cardiac muscle structural genes. Here we focus upon highlighting the existence, function, and development of unique cell types within the dorsal vessel, and discuss their correspondence to analogous structures in the vertebrate heart. PMID:27695700

  10. Supervised, semi-supervised and unsupervised inference of gene regulatory networks.

    PubMed

    Maetschke, Stefan R; Madhamshettiwar, Piyush B; Davis, Melissa J; Ragan, Mark A

    2014-03-01

    Inference of gene regulatory network from expression data is a challenging task. Many methods have been developed to this purpose but a comprehensive evaluation that covers unsupervised, semi-supervised and supervised methods, and provides guidelines for their practical application, is lacking. We performed an extensive evaluation of inference methods on simulated and experimental expression data. The results reveal low prediction accuracies for unsupervised techniques with the notable exception of the Z-SCORE method on knockout data. In all other cases, the supervised approach achieved the highest accuracies and even in a semi-supervised setting with small numbers of only positive samples, outperformed the unsupervised techniques.

  11. Modular Semantic Tagging of Medline Abstracts and its Use in Inferring Regulatory Networks

    SciTech Connect

    Verhagen, Marc; Pustejovsky, James; Taylor, Ronald C.; Sanfilippo, Antonio P.

    2011-09-19

    We describe MedstractPlus, a resource for mining relations from the Medline bibliographic database that is currently under construction. It was built on the remains of Medstract, a previously created resource that included a biorelation server and an acronym database. MedstractPlus uses simple and scalable natural language processing modules to structure text, is designed with reusability and extendibility in mind, and adheres to the philosophy of the Linguistic Annotation Framework. We show how MedstractPlus has been used to provide seeds for a novel approach to inferring transcriptional regulatory networks from gene expression data.

  12. Toward integration of systems biology formalism: the gene regulatory networks case.

    PubMed

    Gentilini, Raffaella

    2005-01-01

    We consider the problem of integrating different systems biology formalisms, namely, the process calculi based formalism, the modeling approach based on systems of differential equations, and the one relying on automata-like descriptions (and model checking). Specifically, we define automatic procedures for translating stochastic pi-calculus descriptions of gene regulatory networks to S-systems differential equations. Tools for extracting and reasoning on (approximate) solutions of S-systems have been recently developed in the literature, and can be exploited to establish a link with automata-based systems biology and model checking techniques.

  13. Reverse engineering of gene regulatory networks based on S-systems and Bat algorithm.

    PubMed

    Mandal, Sudip; Khan, Abhinandan; Saha, Goutam; Pal, Rajat Kumar

    2016-06-01

    The correct inference of gene regulatory networks for the understanding of the intricacies of the complex biological regulations remains an intriguing task for researchers. With the availability of large dimensional microarray data, relationships among thousands of genes can be simultaneously extracted. Among the prevalent models of reverse engineering genetic networks, S-system is considered to be an efficient mathematical tool. In this paper, Bat algorithm, based on the echolocation of bats, has been used to optimize the S-system model parameters. A decoupled S-system has been implemented to reduce the complexity of the algorithm. Initially, the proposed method has been successfully tested on an artificial network with and without the presence of noise. Based on the fact that a real-life genetic network is sparsely connected, a novel Accumulative Cardinality based decoupled S-system has been proposed. The cardinality has been varied from zero up to a maximum value, and this model has been implemented for the reconstruction of the DNA SOS repair network of Escherichia coli. The obtained results have shown significant improvements in the detection of a greater number of true regulations, and in the minimization of false detections compared to other existing methods.

  14. Diversified Control Paths: A Significant Way Disease Genes Perturb the Human Regulatory Network

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Bingbo; Gao, Lin; Zhang, Qingfang; Li, Aimin; Deng, Yue; Guo, Xingli

    2015-01-01

    Background The complexity of biological systems motivates us to use the underlying networks to provide deep understanding of disease etiology and the human diseases are viewed as perturbations of dynamic properties of networks. Control theory that deals with dynamic systems has been successfully used to capture systems-level knowledge in large amount of quantitative biological interactions. But from the perspective of system control, the ways by which multiple genetic factors jointly perturb a disease phenotype still remain. Results In this work, we combine tools from control theory and network science to address the diversified control paths in complex networks. Then the ways by which the disease genes perturb biological systems are identified and quantified by the control paths in a human regulatory network. Furthermore, as an application, prioritization of candidate genes is presented by use of control path analysis and gene ontology annotation for definition of similarities. We use leave-one-out cross-validation to evaluate the ability of finding the gene-disease relationship. Results have shown compatible performance with previous sophisticated works, especially in directed systems. Conclusions Our results inspire a deeper understanding of molecular mechanisms that drive pathological processes. Diversified control paths offer a basis for integrated intervention techniques which will ultimately lead to the development of novel therapeutic strategies. PMID:26284649

  15. Antagonistic Coevolution Drives Whack-a-Mole Sensitivity in Gene Regulatory Networks

    PubMed Central

    Shin, Jeewoen; MacCarthy, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    Robustness, defined as tolerance to perturbations such as mutations and environmental fluctuations, is pervasive in biological systems. However, robustness often coexists with its counterpart, evolvability—the ability of perturbations to generate new phenotypes. Previous models of gene regulatory network evolution have shown that robustness evolves under stabilizing selection, but it is unclear how robustness and evolvability will emerge in common coevolutionary scenarios. We consider a two-species model of coevolution involving one host and one parasite population. By using two interacting species, key model parameters that determine the fitness landscapes become emergent properties of the model, avoiding the need to impose these parameters externally. In our study, parasites are modeled on species such as cuckoos where mimicry of the host phenotype confers high fitness to the parasite but lower fitness to the host. Here, frequent phenotype changes are favored as each population continually adapts to the other population. Sensitivity evolves at the network level such that point mutations can induce large phenotype changes. Crucially, the sensitive points of the network are broadly distributed throughout the network and continually relocate. Each time sensitive points in the network are mutated, new ones appear to take their place. We have therefore named this phenomenon “whack-a-mole” sensitivity, after a popular fun park game. We predict that this type of sensitivity will evolve under conditions of strong directional selection, an observation that helps interpret existing experimental evidence, for example, during the emergence of bacterial antibiotic resistance. PMID:26451700

  16. Network topology and parameter estimation: from experimental design methods to gene regulatory network kinetics using a community based approach

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Accurate estimation of parameters of biochemical models is required to characterize the dynamics of molecular processes. This problem is intimately linked to identifying the most informative experiments for accomplishing such tasks. While significant progress has been made, effective experimental strategies for parameter identification and for distinguishing among alternative network topologies remain unclear. We approached these questions in an unbiased manner using a unique community-based approach in the context of the DREAM initiative (Dialogue for Reverse Engineering Assessment of Methods). We created an in silico test framework under which participants could probe a network with hidden parameters by requesting a range of experimental assays; results of these experiments were simulated according to a model of network dynamics only partially revealed to participants. Results We proposed two challenges; in the first, participants were given the topology and underlying biochemical structure of a 9-gene regulatory network and were asked to determine its parameter values. In the second challenge, participants were given an incomplete topology with 11 genes and asked to find three missing links in the model. In both challenges, a budget was provided to buy experimental data generated in silico with the model and mimicking the features of different common experimental techniques, such as microarrays and fluorescence microscopy. Data could be bought at any stage, allowing participants to implement an iterative loop of experiments and computation. Conclusions A total of 19 teams participated in this competition. The results suggest that the combination of state-of-the-art parameter estimation and a varied set of experimental methods using a few datasets, mostly fluorescence imaging data, can accurately determine parameters of biochemical models of gene regulation. However, the task is considerably more difficult if the gene network topology is not completely

  17. A Survey of Statistical Models for Reverse Engineering Gene Regulatory Networks

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Yufei; Tienda-Luna, Isabel M.; Wang, Yufeng

    2009-01-01

    Statistical models for reverse engineering gene regulatory networks are surveyed in this article. To provide readers with a system-level view of the modeling issues in this research, a graphical modeling framework is proposed. This framework serves as the scaffolding on which the review of different models can be systematically assembled. Based on the framework, we review many existing models for many aspects of gene regulation; the pros and cons of each model are discussed. In addition, network inference algorithms are also surveyed under the graphical modeling framework by the categories of point solutions and probabilistic solutions and the connections and differences among the algorithms are provided. This survey has the potential to elucidate the development and future of reverse engineering GRNs and bring statistical signal processing closer to the core of this research. PMID:20046885

  18. Model aggregation: a building-block approach to creating large macromolecular regulatory networks

    PubMed Central

    Randhawa, Ranjit; Shaffer, Clifford A.; Tyson, John J.

    2009-01-01

    Motivation: Models of regulatory networks become more difficult to construct and understand as they grow in size and complexity. Modelers naturally build large models from smaller components that each represent subsets of reactions within the larger network. To assist modelers in this process, we present model aggregation, which defines models in terms of components that are designed for the purpose of being combined. Results: We have implemented a model editor that incorporates model aggregation, and we suggest supporting extensions to the Systems Biology Markup Language (SBML) Level 3. We illustrate aggregation with a model of the eukaryotic cell cycle ‘engine’ created from smaller pieces. Availability: Java implementations are available in the JigCell Aggregation Connector. See http://jigcell.biol.vt.edu. Contact: shaffer@vt.edu PMID:19880372

  19. Root Systems Biology: Integrative Modeling across Scales, from Gene Regulatory Networks to the Rhizosphere1

    PubMed Central

    Hill, Kristine; Porco, Silvana; Lobet, Guillaume; Zappala, Susan; Mooney, Sacha; Draye, Xavier; Bennett, Malcolm J.

    2013-01-01

    Genetic and genomic approaches in model organisms have advanced our understanding of root biology over the last decade. Recently, however, systems biology and modeling have emerged as important approaches, as our understanding of root regulatory pathways has become more complex and interpreting pathway outputs has become less intuitive. To relate root genotype to phenotype, we must move beyond the examination of interactions at the genetic network scale and employ multiscale modeling approaches to predict emergent properties at the tissue, organ, organism, and rhizosphere scales. Understanding the underlying biological mechanisms and the complex interplay between systems at these different scales requires an integrative approach. Here, we describe examples of such approaches and discuss the merits of developing models to span multiple scales, from network to population levels, and to address dynamic interactions between plants and their environment. PMID:24143806

  20. Understanding the Role of Housekeeping and Stress-Related Genes in Transcription-Regulatory Networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heath, Allison; Kavraki, Lydia; Balázsi, Gábor

    2008-03-01

    Despite the increasing number of completely sequenced genomes, much remains to be learned about how living cells process environmental information and respond to changes in their surroundings. Accumulating evidence indicates that eukaryotic and prokaryotic genes can be classified in two distinct categories that we will call class I and class II. Class I genes are housekeeping genes, often characterized by stable, noise resistant expression levels. In contrast, class II genes are stress-related genes and often have noisy, unstable expression levels. In this work we analyze the large scale transcription-regulatory networks (TRN) of E. coli and S. cerevisiae and preliminary data on H. sapien. We find that stable, housekeeping genes (class I) are preferentially utilized as transcriptional inputs while stress related, unstable genes (class II) are utilized as transcriptional integrators. This might be the result of convergent evolution that placed the appropriate genes in the appropriate locations within transcriptional networks according to some fundamental principles that govern cellular information processing.

  1. Genome-wide identification of regulatory elements and reconstruction of gene regulatory networks of the green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii under carbon deprivation.

    PubMed

    Winck, Flavia Vischi; Vischi Winck, Flavia; Arvidsson, Samuel; Riaño-Pachón, Diego Mauricio; Hempel, Sabrina; Koseska, Aneta; Nikoloski, Zoran; Urbina Gomez, David Alejandro; Rupprecht, Jens; Mueller-Roeber, Bernd

    2013-01-01

    The unicellular green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii is a long-established model organism for studies on photosynthesis and carbon metabolism-related physiology. Under conditions of air-level carbon dioxide concentration [CO2], a carbon concentrating mechanism (CCM) is induced to facilitate cellular carbon uptake. CCM increases the availability of carbon dioxide at the site of cellular carbon fixation. To improve our understanding of the transcriptional control of the CCM, we employed FAIRE-seq (formaldehyde-assisted Isolation of Regulatory Elements, followed by deep sequencing) to determine nucleosome-depleted chromatin regions of algal cells subjected to carbon deprivation. Our FAIRE data recapitulated the positions of known regulatory elements in the promoter of the periplasmic carbonic anhydrase (Cah1) gene, which is upregulated during CCM induction, and revealed new candidate regulatory elements at a genome-wide scale. In addition, time series expression patterns of 130 transcription factor (TF) and transcription regulator (TR) genes were obtained for cells cultured under photoautotrophic condition and subjected to a shift from high to low [CO2]. Groups of co-expressed genes were identified and a putative directed gene-regulatory network underlying the CCM was reconstructed from the gene expression data using the recently developed IOTA (inner composition alignment) method. Among the candidate regulatory genes, two members of the MYB-related TF family, Lcr1 (Low-CO 2 response regulator 1) and Lcr2 (Low-CO2 response regulator 2), may play an important role in down-regulating the expression of a particular set of TF and TR genes in response to low [CO2]. The results obtained provide new insights into the transcriptional control of the CCM and revealed more than 60 new candidate regulatory genes. Deep sequencing of nucleosome-depleted genomic regions indicated the presence of new, previously unknown regulatory elements in the C. reinhardtii genome. Our work can

  2. Integrated Regulatory and Metabolic Networks of the Marine Diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum Predict the Response to Rising CO2 Levels.

    PubMed

    Levering, Jennifer; Dupont, Christopher L; Allen, Andrew E; Palsson, Bernhard O; Zengler, Karsten

    2017-01-01

    Diatoms are eukaryotic microalgae that are responsible for up to 40% of the ocean's primary productivity. How diatoms respond to environmental perturbations such as elevated carbon concentrations in the atmosphere is currently poorly understood. We developed a transcriptional regulatory network based on various transcriptome sequencing expression libraries for different environmental responses to gain insight into the marine diatom's metabolic and regulatory interactions and provide a comprehensive framework of responses to increasing atmospheric carbon levels. This transcriptional regulatory network was integrated with a recently published genome-scale metabolic model of Phaeodactylum tricornutum to explore the connectivity of the regulatory network and shared metabolites. The integrated regulatory and metabolic model revealed highly connected modules within carbon and nitrogen metabolism. P. tricornutum's response to rising carbon levels was analyzed by using the recent genome-scale metabolic model with cross comparison to experimental manipulations of carbon dioxide. IMPORTANCE Using a systems biology approach, we studied the response of the marine diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum to changing atmospheric carbon concentrations on an ocean-wide scale. By integrating an available genome-scale metabolic model and a newly developed transcriptional regulatory network inferred from transcriptome sequencing expression data, we demonstrate that carbon metabolism and nitrogen metabolism are strongly connected and the genes involved are coregulated in this model diatom. These tight regulatory constraints could play a major role during the adaptation of P. tricornutum to increasing carbon levels. The transcriptional regulatory network developed can be further used to study the effects of different environmental perturbations on P. tricornutum's metabolism.

  3. Integrated Regulatory and Metabolic Networks of the Marine Diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum Predict the Response to Rising CO2 Levels

    PubMed Central

    Dupont, Christopher L.; Allen, Andrew E.; Palsson, Bernhard O.

    2017-01-01

    ABSTRACT Diatoms are eukaryotic microalgae that are responsible for up to 40% of the ocean’s primary productivity. How diatoms respond to environmental perturbations such as elevated carbon concentrations in the atmosphere is currently poorly understood. We developed a transcriptional regulatory network based on various transcriptome sequencing expression libraries for different environmental responses to gain insight into the marine diatom’s metabolic and regulatory interactions and provide a comprehensive framework of responses to increasing atmospheric carbon levels. This transcriptional regulatory network was integrated with a recently published genome-scale metabolic model of Phaeodactylum tricornutum to explore the connectivity of the regulatory network and shared metabolites. The integrated regulatory and metabolic model revealed highly connected modules within carbon and nitrogen metabolism. P. tricornutum’s response to rising carbon levels was analyzed by using the recent genome-scale metabolic model with cross comparison to experimental manipulations of carbon dioxide. IMPORTANCE Using a systems biology approach, we studied the response of the marine diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum to changing atmospheric carbon concentrations on an ocean-wide scale. By integrating an available genome-scale metabolic model and a newly developed transcriptional regulatory network inferred from transcriptome sequencing expression data, we demonstrate that carbon metabolism and nitrogen metabolism are strongly connected and the genes involved are coregulated in this model diatom. These tight regulatory constraints could play a major role during the adaptation of P. tricornutum to increasing carbon levels. The transcriptional regulatory network developed can be further used to study the effects of different environmental perturbations on P. tricornutum’s metabolism. PMID:28217746

  4. Receptors rather than signals change in expression in four physiological regulatory networks during evolutionary divergence in threespine stickleback.

    PubMed

    Di Poi, Carole; Bélanger, Dominic; Amyot, Marc; Rogers, Sean; Aubin-Horth, Nadia

    2016-07-01

    The molecular mechanisms underlying behavioural evolution following colonization of novel environments are largely unknown. Molecules that interact to control equilibrium within an organism form physiological regulatory networks. It is essential to determine whether particular components of physiological regulatory networks evolve or if the network as a whole is affected in populations diverging in behavioural responses, as this may affect the nature, amplitude and number of impacted traits. We studied the regulation of four physiological regulatory networks in freshwater and marine populations of threespine stickleback raised in a common environment, which were previously characterized as showing evolutionary divergence in behaviour and stress reactivity. We measured nineteen components of these networks (ligands and receptors) using mRNA and monoamine levels in the brain, pituitary and interrenal gland, as well as hormone levels. Freshwater fish showed higher expression in the brain of adrenergic (adrb2a), serotonergic (htr2a) and dopaminergic (DRD2) receptors, but lower expression of the htr2b receptor. Freshwater fish also showed higher expression of the mc2r receptor of the glucocorticoid axis in the interrenals. Collectively, our results suggest that the inheritance of the regulation of these networks may be implicated in the evolution of behaviour and stress reactivity in association with population divergence. Our results also suggest that evolutionary change in freshwater threespine stickleback may be more associated with the expression of specific receptors rather than with global changes of all the measured constituents of the physiological regulatory networks.

  5. Prior knowledge driven Granger causality analysis on gene regulatory network discovery

    SciTech Connect

    Yao, Shun; Yoo, Shinjae; Yu, Dantong

    2015-08-28

    Our study focuses on discovering gene regulatory networks from time series gene expression data using the Granger causality (GC) model. However, the number of available time points (T) usually is much smaller than the number of target genes (n) in biological datasets. The widely applied pairwise GC model (PGC) and other regularization strategies can lead to a significant number of false identifications when n>>T. In this study, we proposed a new method, viz., CGC-2SPR (CGC using two-step prior Ridge regularization) to resolve the problem by incorporating prior biological knowledge about a target gene data set. In our simulation experiments, the propose new methodology CGC-2SPR showed significant performance improvement in terms of accuracy over other widely used GC modeling (PGC, Ridge and Lasso) and MI-based (MRNET and ARACNE) methods. In addition, we applied CGC-2SPR to a real biological dataset, i.e., the yeast metabolic cycle, and discovered more true positive edges with CGC-2SPR than with the other existing methods. In our research, we noticed a “ 1+1>2” effect when we combined prior knowledge and gene expression data to discover regulatory networks. Based on causality networks, we made a functional prediction that the Abm1 gene (its functions previously were unknown) might be related to the yeast’s responses to different levels of glucose. In conclusion, our research improves causality modeling by combining heterogeneous knowledge, which is well aligned with the future direction in system biology. Furthermore, we proposed a method of Monte Carlo significance estimation (MCSE) to calculate the edge significances which provide statistical meanings to the discovered causality networks. All of our data and source codes will be available under the link https://bitbucket.org/dtyu/granger-causality/wiki/Home.

  6. Parameter Estimation for Gene Regulatory Networks from Microarray Data: Cold Shock Response in Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

    PubMed

    Dahlquist, Kam D; Fitzpatrick, Ben G; Camacho, Erika T; Entzminger, Stephanie D; Wanner, Nathan C

    2015-08-01

    We investigated the dynamics of a gene regulatory network controlling the cold shock response in budding yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The medium-scale network, derived from published genome-wide location data, consists of 21 transcription factors that regulate one another through 31 directed edges. The expression levels of the individual transcription factors were modeled using mass balance ordinary differential equations with a sigmoidal production function. Each equation includes a production rate, a degradation rate, weights that denote the magnitude and type of influence of the connected transcription factors (activation or repression), and a threshold of expression. The inverse problem of determining model parameters from observed data is our primary interest. We fit the differential equation model to published microarray data using a penalized nonlinear least squares approach. Model predictions fit the experimental data well, within the 95% confidence interval. Tests of the model using randomized initial guesses and model-generated data also lend confidence to the fit. The results have revealed activation and repression relationships between the transcription factors. Sensitivity analysis indicates that the model is most sensitive to changes in the production rate parameters, weights, and thresholds of Yap1, Rox1, and Yap6, which form a densely connected core in the network. The modeling results newly suggest that Rap1, Fhl1, Msn4, Rph1, and Hsf1 play an important role in regulating the early response to cold shock in yeast. Our results demonstrate that estimation for a large number of parameters can be successfully performed for nonlinear dynamic gene regulatory networks using sparse, noisy microarray data.

  7. Prior knowledge driven Granger causality analysis on gene regulatory network discovery

    DOE PAGES

    Yao, Shun; Yoo, Shinjae; Yu, Dantong

    2015-08-28

    Our study focuses on discovering gene regulatory networks from time series gene expression data using the Granger causality (GC) model. However, the number of available time points (T) usually is much smaller than the number of target genes (n) in biological datasets. The widely applied pairwise GC model (PGC) and other regularization strategies can lead to a significant number of false identifications when n>>T. In this study, we proposed a new method, viz., CGC-2SPR (CGC using two-step prior Ridge regularization) to resolve the problem by incorporating prior biological knowledge about a target gene data set. In our simulation experiments, themore » propose new methodology CGC-2SPR showed significant performance improvement in terms of accuracy over other widely used GC modeling (PGC, Ridge and Lasso) and MI-based (MRNET and ARACNE) methods. In addition, we applied CGC-2SPR to a real biological dataset, i.e., the yeast metabolic cycle, and discovered more true positive edges with CGC-2SPR than with the other existing methods. In our research, we noticed a “ 1+1>2” effect when we combined prior knowledge and gene expression data to discover regulatory networks. Based on causality networks, we made a functional prediction that the Abm1 gene (its functions previously were unknown) might be related to the yeast’s responses to different levels of glucose. In conclusion, our research improves causality modeling by combining heterogeneous knowledge, which is well aligned with the future direction in system biology. Furthermore, we proposed a method of Monte Carlo significance estimation (MCSE) to calculate the edge significances which provide statistical meanings to the discovered causality networks. All of our data and source codes will be available under the link https://bitbucket.org/dtyu/granger-causality/wiki/Home.« less

  8. ARACNe-based inference, using curated microarray data, of Arabidopsis thaliana root transcriptional regulatory networks

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Uncovering the complex transcriptional regulatory networks (TRNs) that underlie plant and animal development remains a challenge. However, a vast amount of data from public microarray experiments is available, which can be subject to inference algorithms in order to recover reliable TRN architectures. Results In this study we present a simple bioinformatics methodology that uses public, carefully curated microarray data and the mutual information algorithm ARACNe in order to obtain a database of transcriptional interactions. We used data from Arabidopsis thaliana root samples to show that the transcriptional regulatory networks derived from this database successfully recover previously identified root transcriptional modules and to propose new transcription factors for the SHORT ROOT/SCARECROW and PLETHORA pathways. We further show that these networks are a powerful tool to integrate and analyze high-throughput expression data, as exemplified by our analysis of a SHORT ROOT induction time-course microarray dataset, and are a reliable source for the prediction of novel root gene functions. In particular, we used our database to predict novel genes involved in root secondary cell-wall synthesis and identified the MADS-box TF XAL1/AGL12 as an unexpected participant in this process. Conclusions This study demonstrates that network inference using carefully curated microarray data yields reliable TRN architectures. In contrast to previous efforts to obtain root TRNs, that have focused on particular functional modules or tissues, our root transcriptional interactions provide an overview of the transcriptional pathways present in Arabidopsis thaliana roots and will likely yield a plethora of novel hypotheses to be tested experimentally. PMID:24739361

  9. A service-oriented architecture for integrating the modeling and formal verification of genetic regulatory networks

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    Background The study of biological networks has led to the development of increasingly large and detailed models. Computer tools are essential for the simulation of the dynamical behavior of the networks from the model. However, as the size of the models grows, it becomes infeasible to manually verify the predictions against experimental data or identify interesting features in a large number of simulation traces. Formal verification based on temporal logic and model checking provides promising methods to automate and scale the analysis of the models. However, a framework that tightly integrates modeling and simulation tools with model checkers is currently missing, on both the conceptual and the implementational level. Results We have developed a generic and modular web service, based on a service-oriented architecture, for integrating the modeling and formal verification of genetic regulatory networks. The architecture has been implemented in the context of the qualitative modeling and simulation tool GNA and the model checkers NUSMV and CADP. GNA has been extended with a verification module for the specification and checking of biological properties. The verification module also allows the display and visual inspection of the verification results. Conclusions The practical use of the proposed web service is illustrated by means of a scenario involving the analysis of a qualitative model of the carbon starvation response in E. coli. The service-oriented architecture allows modelers to define the model and proceed with the specification and formal verification of the biological properties by means of a unified graphical user interface. This guarantees a transparent access to formal verification technology for modelers of genetic regulatory networks. PMID:20042075

  10. Regulatory network of secondary metabolism in Brassica rapa: insight into the glucosinolate pathway.

    PubMed

    Pino Del Carpio, Dunia; Basnet, Ram Kumar; Arends, Danny; Lin, Ke; De Vos, Ric C H; Muth, Dorota; Kodde, Jan; Boutilier, Kim; Bucher, Johan; Wang, Xiaowu; Jansen, Ritsert; Bonnema, Guusje

    2014-01-01

    Brassica rapa studies towards metabolic variation have largely been focused on the profiling of the diversity of metabolic compounds in specific crop types or regional varieties, but none aimed to identify genes with regulatory function in metabolite composition. Here we followed a genetical genomics approach to identify regulatory genes for six biosynthetic pathways of health-related phytochemicals, i.e carotenoids, tocopherols, folates, glucosinolates, flavonoids and phenylpropanoids. Leaves from six weeks-old plants of a Brassica rapa doubled haploid population, consisting of 92 genotypes, were profiled for their secondary metabolite composition, using both targeted and LC-MS-based untargeted metabolomics approaches. Furthermore, the same population was profiled for transcript variation using a microarray containing EST sequences mainly derived from three Brassica species: B. napus, B. rapa and B. oleracea. The biochemical pathway analysis was based on the network analyses of both metabolite QTLs (mQTLs) and transcript QTLs (eQTLs). Co-localization of mQTLs and eQTLs lead to the identification of candidate regulatory genes involved in the biosynthesis of carotenoids, tocopherols and glucosinolates. We subsequently focused on the well-characterized glucosinolate pathway and revealed two hotspots of co-localization of eQTLs with mQTLs in linkage groups A03 and A09. Our results indicate that such a large-scale genetical genomics approach combining transcriptomics and metabolomics data can provide new insights into the genetic regulation of metabolite composition of Brassica vegetables.

  11. Biomechanical cell regulatory networks as complex adaptive systems in relation to cancer.

    PubMed

    Feller, Liviu; Khammissa, Razia Abdool Gafaar; Lemmer, Johan

    2017-01-01

    Physiological structure and function of cells are maintained by ongoing complex dynamic adaptive processes in the intracellular molecular pathways controlling the overall profile of gene expression, and by genes in cellular gene regulatory circuits. Cytogenetic mutations and non-genetic factors such as chronic inflammation or repetitive trauma, intrinsic mechanical stresses within extracellular matrix may induce redirection of gene regulatory circuits with abnormal reactivation of embryonic developmental programmes which can now drive cell transformation and cancer initiation, and later cancer progression and metastasis. Some of the non-genetic factors that may also favour cancerization are dysregulation in epithelial-mesenchymal interactions, in cell-to-cell communication, in extracellular matrix turnover, in extracellular matrix-to-cell interactions and in mechanotransduction pathways. Persistent increase in extracellular matrix stiffness, for whatever reason, has been shown to play an important role in cell transformation, and later in cancer cell invasion. In this article we review certain cell regulatory networks driving carcinogenesis, focussing on the role of mechanical stresses modulating structure and function of cells and their extracellular matrices.

  12. A Semiquantitative Framework for Gene Regulatory Networks: Increasing the Time and Quantitative Resolution of Boolean Networks

    PubMed Central

    Kerkhofs, Johan; Geris, Liesbet

    2015-01-01

    Boolean models have been instrumental in predicting general features of gene networks and more recently also as explorative tools in specific biological applications. In this study we introduce a basic quantitative and a limited time resolution to a discrete (Boolean) framework. Quantitative resolution is improved through the employ of normalized variables in unison with an additive approach. Increased time resolution stems from the introduction of two distinct priority classes. Through the implementation of a previously published chondrocyte network and T helper cell network, we show that this addition of quantitative and time resolution broadens the scope of biological behaviour that can be captured by the models. Specifically, the quantitative resolution readily allows models to discern qualitative differences in dosage response to growth factors. The limited time resolution, in turn, can influence the reachability of attractors, delineating the likely long term system behaviour. Importantly, the information required for implementation of these features, such as the nature of an interaction, is typically obtainable from the literature. Nonetheless, a trade-off is always present between additional computational cost of this approach and the likelihood of extending the model’s scope. Indeed, in some cases the inclusion of these features does not yield additional insight. This framework, incorporating increased and readily available time and semi-quantitative resolution, can help in substantiating the litmus test of dynamics for gene networks, firstly by excluding unlikely dynamics and secondly by refining falsifiable predictions on qualitative behaviour. PMID:26067297

  13. The simple neuroendocrine-immune regulatory network in oyster Crassostrea gigas mediates complex functions

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Zhaoqun; Wang, Lingling; Zhou, Zhi; Sun, Ying; Wang, Mengqiang; Wang, Hao; Hou, Zhanhui; Gao, Dahai; Gao, Qiang; Song, Linsheng

    2016-01-01

    The neuroendocrine-immune (NEI) regulatory network is a complex system, which plays an indispensable role in the immunity of the host. In the present study, the bioinformatical analysis of the transcriptomic data from oyster Crassostrea gigas and further biological validation revealed that oyster TNF (CgTNF-1 CGI_10018786) could activate the transcription factors NF-κB and HSF (heat shock transcription factor) through MAPK signaling pathway, and then regulate apoptosis, redox reaction, neuro-regulation and protein folding in oyster haemocytes. The activated immune cells then released neurotransmitters including acetylcholine, norepinephrine and [Met5]-enkephalin to regulate the immune response by arising the expression of three TNF (CGI_10005109, CGI_10005110 and CGI_10006440) and translocating two NF-κB (Cgp65, CGI_10018142 and CgRel, CGI_10021567) between the cytoplasm and nuclei of haemocytes. Neurotransmitters exhibited the immunomodulation effects by influencing apoptosis and phagocytosis of oyster haemocytes. Acetylcholine and norepinephrine could down-regulate the immune response, while [Met5]-enkephalin up-regulate the immune response. These results suggested that the simple neuroendocrine-immune regulatory network in oyster might be activated by oyster TNF and then regulate the immune response by virtue of neurotransmitters, cytokines and transcription factors. PMID:27193598

  14. BAP1 inhibits the ER stress gene regulatory network and modulates metabolic stress response.

    PubMed

    Dai, Fangyan; Lee, Hyemin; Zhang, Yilei; Zhuang, Li; Yao, Hui; Xi, Yuanxin; Xiao, Zhen-Dong; You, M James; Li, Wei; Su, Xiaoping; Gan, Boyi

    2017-03-21

    The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is classically linked to metabolic homeostasis via the activation of unfolded protein response (UPR), which is instructed by multiple transcriptional regulatory cascades. BRCA1 associated protein 1 (BAP1) is a tumor suppressor with de-ubiquitinating enzyme activity and has been implicated in chromatin regulation of gene expression. Here we show that BAP1 inhibits cell death induced by unresolved metabolic stress. This prosurvival role of BAP1 depends on its de-ubiquitinating activity and correlates with its ability to dampen the metabolic stress-induced UPR transcriptional network. BAP1 inhibits glucose deprivation-induced reactive oxygen species and ATP depletion, two cellular events contributing to the ER stress-induced cell death. In line with this, Bap1 KO mice are more sensitive to tunicamycin-induced renal damage. Mechanically, we show that BAP1 represses metabolic stress-induced UPR and cell death through activating transcription factor 3 (ATF3) and C/EBP homologous protein (CHOP), and reveal that BAP1 binds to ATF3 and CHOP promoters and inhibits their transcription. Taken together, our results establish a previously unappreciated role of BAP1 in modulating the cellular adaptability to metabolic stress and uncover a pivotal function of BAP1 in the regulation of the ER stress gene-regulatory network. Our study may also provide new conceptual framework for further understanding BAP1 function in cancer.

  15. Medusa structure of the gene regulatory network: dominance of transcription factors in cancer subtype classification.

    PubMed

    Guo, Yuchun; Feng, Ying; Trivedi, Niraj S; Huang, Sui

    2011-05-01

    Gene expression profiles consisting of ten thousands of transcripts are used for clustering of tissue, such as tumors, into subtypes, often without considering the underlying reason that the distinct patterns of expression arise because of constraints in the realization of gene expression profiles imposed by the gene regulatory network. The topology of this network has been suggested to consist of a regulatory core of genes represented most prominently by transcription factors (TFs) and microRNAs, that influence the expression of other genes, and of a periphery of 'enslaved' effector genes that are regulated but not regulating. This 'medusa' architecture implies that the core genes are much stronger determinants of the realized gene expression profiles. To test this hypothesis, we examined the clustering of gene expression profiles into known tumor types to quantitatively demonstrate that TFs, and even more pronounced, microRNAs, are much stronger discriminators of tumor type specific gene expression patterns than a same number of randomly selected or metabolic genes. These findings lend support to the hypothesis of a medusa architecture and of the canalizing nature of regulation by microRNAs. They also reveal the degree of freedom for the expression of peripheral genes that are less stringently associated with a tissue type specific global gene expression profile.

  16. Unveiling MYCN regulatory networks in neuroblastoma via integrative analysis of heterogeneous genomics data

    PubMed Central

    Hsu, Chia-Lang; Chang, Hsin-Yi; Chang, Jen-Yun; Hsu, Wen-Ming; Huang, Hsuan-Cheng; Juan, Hsueh-Fen

    2016-01-01

    MYCN, an oncogenic transcription factor of the Myc family, is a major driver of neuroblastoma tumorigenesis. Due to the difficulty in drugging MYCN directly, revealing the molecules in MYCN regulatory networks will help to identify effective therapeutic targets for neuroblastoma therapy. Here we perform ChIP-sequencing and small RNA-sequencing of neuroblastoma cells to determine the MYCN-binding sites and MYCN-associated microRNAs, and integrate various types of genomic data to construct MYCN regulatory networks. The overall analysis indicated that MYCN-regulated genes were involved in a wide range of biological processes and could be used as signatures to identify poor-prognosis MYCN-non-amplified patients. Analysis of the MYCN binding sites showed that MYCN principally served as an activator. Using a computational approach, we identified 32 MYCN co-regulators, and some of these findings are supported by previous studies. Moreover, we investigated the interplay between MYCN transcriptional and microRNA post-transcriptional regulations and identified several microRNAs, such as miR-124-3p and miR-93-5p, which may significantly contribute to neuroblastoma pathogenesis. We also found MYCN and its regulated microRNAs acted together to repress the tumor suppressor genes. This work provides a comprehensive view of MYCN regulations for exploring therapeutic targets in neuroblastoma, as well as insights into the mechanism of neuroblastoma tumorigenesis. PMID:27167114

  17. The simple neuroendocrine-immune regulatory network in oyster Crassostrea gigas mediates complex functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Zhaoqun; Wang, Lingling; Zhou, Zhi; Sun, Ying; Wang, Mengqiang; Wang, Hao; Hou, Zhanhui; Gao, Dahai; Gao, Qiang; Song, Linsheng

    2016-05-01

    The neuroendocrine-immune (NEI) regulatory network is a complex system, which plays an indispensable role in the immunity of the host. In the present study, the bioinformatical analysis of the transcriptomic data from oyster Crassostrea gigas and further biological validation revealed that oyster TNF (CgTNF-1 CGI_10018786) could activate the transcription factors NF-κB and HSF (heat shock transcription factor) through MAPK signaling pathway, and then regulate apoptosis, redox reaction, neuro-regulation and protein folding in oyster haemocytes. The activated immune cells then released neurotransmitters including acetylcholine, norepinephrine and [Met5]-enkephalin to regulate the immune response by arising the expression of three TNF (CGI_10005109, CGI_10005110 and CGI_10006440) and translocating two NF-κB (Cgp65, CGI_10018142 and CgRel, CGI_10021567) between the cytoplasm and nuclei of haemocytes. Neurotransmitters exhibited the immunomodulation effects by influencing apoptosis and phagocytosis of oyster haemocytes. Acetylcholine and norepinephrine could down-regulate the immune response, while [Met5]-enkephalin up-regulate the immune response. These results suggested that the simple neuroendocrine-immune regulatory network in oyster might be activated by oyster TNF and then regulate the immune response by virtue of neurotransmitters, cytokines and transcription factors.

  18. BAP1 inhibits the ER stress gene regulatory network and modulates metabolic stress response

    PubMed Central

    Dai, Fangyan; Lee, Hyemin; Zhang, Yilei; Zhuang, Li; Yao, Hui; Xi, Yuanxin; Xiao, Zhen-Dong; You, M. James; Li, Wei; Su, Xiaoping; Gan, Boyi

    2017-01-01

    The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is classically linked to metabolic homeostasis via the activation of unfolded protein response (UPR), which is instructed by multiple transcriptional regulatory cascades. BRCA1 associated protein 1 (BAP1) is a tumor suppressor with de-ubiquitinating enzyme activity and has been implicated in chromatin regulation of gene expression. Here we show that BAP1 inhibits cell death induced by unresolved metabolic stress. This prosurvival role of BAP1 depends on its de-ubiquitinating activity and correlates with its ability to dampen the metabolic stress-induced UPR transcriptional network. BAP1 inhibits glucose deprivation-induced reactive oxygen species and ATP depletion, two cellular events contributing to the ER stress-induced cell death. In line with this, Bap1 KO mice are more sensitive to tunicamycin-induced renal damage. Mechanically, we show that BAP1 represses metabolic stress-induced UPR and cell death through activating transcription factor 3 (ATF3) and C/EBP homologous protein (CHOP), and reveal that BAP1 binds to ATF3 and CHOP promoters and inhibits their transcription. Taken together, our results establish a previously unappreciated role of BAP1 in modulating the cellular adaptability to metabolic stress and uncover a pivotal function of BAP1 in the regulation of the ER stress gene-regulatory network. Our study may also provide new conceptual framework for further understanding BAP1 function in cancer. PMID:28275095

  19. Advantages of mixing bioinformatics and visualization approaches for analyzing sRNA-mediated regulatory bacterial networks

    PubMed Central

    Bourqui, Romain; Benchimol, William; Gaspin, Christine; Sirand-Pugnet, Pascal; Uricaru, Raluca; Dutour, Isabelle

    2015-01-01

    The revolution in high-throughput sequencing technologies has enabled the acquisition of gigabytes of RNA sequences in many different conditions and has highlighted an unexpected number of small RNAs (sRNAs) in bacteria. Ongoing exploitation of these data enables numerous applications for investigating bacterial transacting sRNA-mediated regulation networks. Focusing on sRNAs that regulate mRNA translation in trans, recent works have noted several sRNA-based regulatory pathways that are essential for key cellular processes. Although the number of known bacterial sRNAs is increasing, the experimental validation of their interactions with mRNA targets remains challenging and involves expensive and time-consuming experimental strategies. Hence, bioinformatics is crucial for selecting and prioritizing candidates before designing any experimental work. However, current software for target prediction produces a prohibitive number of candidates because of the lack of biological knowledge regarding the rules governing sRNA–mRNA interactions. Therefore, there is a real need to develop new approaches to help biologists focus on the most promising predicted sRNA–mRNA interactions. In this perspective, this review aims at presenting the advantages of mixing bioinformatics and visualization approaches for analyzing predicted sRNA-mediated regulatory bacterial networks. PMID:25477348

  20. The simple neuroendocrine-immune regulatory network in oyster Crassostrea gigas mediates complex functions.

    PubMed

    Liu, Zhaoqun; Wang, Lingling; Zhou, Zhi; Sun, Ying; Wang, Mengqiang; Wang, Hao; Hou, Zhanhui; Gao, Dahai; Gao, Qiang; Song, Linsheng

    2016-05-19

    The neuroendocrine-immune (NEI) regulatory network is a complex system, which plays an indispensable role in the immunity of the host. In the present study, the bioinformatical analysis of the transcriptomic data from oyster Crassostrea gigas and further biological validation revealed that oyster TNF (CgTNF-1 CGI_10018786) could activate the transcription factors NF-κB and HSF (heat shock transcription factor) through MAPK signaling pathway, and then regulate apoptosis, redox reaction, neuro-regulation and protein folding in oyster haemocytes. The activated immune cells then released neurotransmitters including acetylcholine, norepinephrine and [Met(5)]-enkephalin to regulate the immune response by arising the expression of three TNF (CGI_10005109, CGI_10005110 and CGI_10006440) and translocating two NF-κB (Cgp65, CGI_10018142 and CgRel, CGI_10021567) between the cytoplasm and nuclei of haemocytes. Neurotransmitters exhibited the immunomodulation effects by influencing apoptosis and phagocytosis of oyster haemocytes. Acetylcholine and norepinephrine could down-regulate the immune response, while [Met(5)]-enkephalin up-regulate the immune response. These results suggested that the simple neuroendocrine-immune regulatory network in oyster might be activated by oyster TNF and then regulate the immune response by virtue of neurotransmitters, cytokines and transcription factors.

  1. Divergence and rewiring of regulatory networks for neural development between human and other species.

    PubMed

    Wang, Ping; Zhao, Dejian; Rockowitz, Shira; Zheng, Deyou

    2016-01-01

    Neural and brain development in human and other mammalian species are largely similar, but distinct features exist at the levels of macrostructure and underlying genetic control. Comparative studies of epigenetic regulation and transcription factor (TF) binding in humans, chimpanzees, rodents, and other species have found large differences in gene regulatory networks. A recent analysis of the cistromes of REST/NRSF, a critical transcriptional regulator for the nervous system, demonstrated that REST binding to syntenic genomic regions (i.e., conserved binding) represents only a small percentage of the total binding events in human and mouse embryonic stem cells. While conserved binding is significantly associated with functional features (e.g., co-factor recruitment) and enriched at genes important for neural development and function, >3000 genes, including many related to brain and neural functions, either contain extra REST-bound sites (e.g., NRXN1) or are targeted by REST only (e.g. PSEN2) in humans. Surprisingly, several genes known to have critical roles in learning and memory, or brain disorders (e.g., APP and HTT) exhibit characteristics of human specific REST regulation. These findings indicate that more systematic studies are needed to better understand the divergent wiring of regulatory networks in humans, mice, and other mammals and their functional implications.

  2. Context-independent essential regulatory interactions for apoptosis and hypertrophy in the cardiac signaling network.

    PubMed

    Kang, Jun Hyuk; Lee, Ho-Sung; Park, Daebeom; Kang, Yun-Won; Kim, Seon Myeong; Gong, Jeong-Ryeol; Cho, Kwang-Hyun

    2017-12-01

    Apoptosis and hypertrophy of cardiomyocytes are the primary causes of heart failure and are known to be regulated by complex interactions in the underlying intracellular signaling network. Previous experimental studies were successful in identifying some key signaling components, but most of the findings were confined to particular experimental conditions corresponding to specific cellular contexts. A question then arises as to whether there might be essential regulatory interactions that prevail across diverse cellular contexts. To address this question, we have constructed a large-scale cardiac signaling network by integrating previous experimental results and developed a mathematical model using normalized ordinary differential equations. Specific cellular contexts were reflected to different kinetic parameters sampled from random distributions. Through extensive computer simulations with various parameter distributions, we revealed the five most essential context-independent regulatory interactions (between: (1) αAR and Gαq, (2) IP3 and calcium, (3) epac and CaMK, (4) JNK and NFAT, and (5) p38 and NFAT) for hypertrophy and apoptosis that were consistently found over all our perturbation analyses. These essential interactions are expected to be the most promising therapeutic targets across a broad spectrum of individual conditions of heart failure patients.

  3. Quaking and PTB control overlapping splicing regulatory networks during muscle cell differentiation.

    PubMed

    Hall, Megan P; Nagel, Roland J; Fagg, W Samuel; Shiue, Lily; Cline, Melissa S; Perriman, Rhonda J; Donohue, John Paul; Ares, Manuel

    2013-05-01

    Alternative splicing contributes to muscle development, but a complete set of muscle-splicing factors and their combinatorial interactions are unknown. Previous work identified ACUAA ("STAR" motif) as an enriched intron sequence near muscle-specific alternative exons such as Capzb exon 9. Mass spectrometry of myoblast proteins selected by the Capzb exon 9 intron via RNA affinity chromatography identifies Quaking (QK), a protein known to regulate mRNA function through ACUAA motifs in 3' UTRs. We find that QK promotes inclusion of Capzb exon 9 in opposition to repression by polypyrimidine tract-binding protein (PTB). QK depletion alters inclusion of 406 cassette exons whose adjacent intron sequences are also enriched in ACUAA motifs. During differentiation of myoblasts to myotubes, QK levels increase two- to threefold, suggesting a mechanism for QK-responsive exon regulation. Combined analysis of the PTB- and QK-splicing regulatory networks during myogenesis suggests that 39% of regulated exons are under the control of one or both of these splicing factors. This work provides the first evidence that QK is a global regulator of splicing during muscle development in vertebrates and shows how overlapping splicing regulatory networks contribute to gene expression programs during differentiation.

  4. Transcriptional network structure has little effect on the rate of regulatory evolution in yeast.

    PubMed

    Kopp, Artyom; McIntyre, Lauren M

    2012-08-01

    Studies in evolutionary developmental biology suggest that the structure of genetic pathways may bias the fixation of natural variation toward particular nodes in these pathways. In an attempt to test this trend genome wide, we integrated several previously published data sets to examine whether the position of genes in the whole-genome transcriptional network of Saccharomyces cerevisiae is associated with the amount of cis-regulatory expression divergence between S. cerevisiae and its sibling species Saccharomyces paradoxus. We find little evidence for an association between connectivity and divergence in the global network that combines data from multiple conditions. However, relationships between connectivity and divergence are apparent in some of the smaller subnetworks. Despite a slight tendency for genes with more transcriptional interactions to show greater divergence, these differences explain no more than a small fraction of variation in evolutionary rates. These results suggest that the systems biology focus on large interactomes may miss some critical details of local interactions. More detailed experimental analysis will be needed to define the genetic pathways that control specific phenotypic traits and quantify the rate of regulatory changes at different points in these pathways.

  5. Reduction of the chemical master equation for gene regulatory networks using proper generalized decompositions.

    PubMed

    Ammar, Amine; Cueto, Elías; Chinesta, Francisco

    2012-09-01

    The numerical solution of the chemical master equation (CME) governing gene regulatory networks and cell signaling processes remains a challenging task owing to its complexity, exponentially growing with the number of species involved. Although most of the existing techniques rely on the use of Monte Carlo-like techniques, we present here a new technique based on the approximation of the unknown variable (the probability of having a particular chemical state) in terms of a finite sum of separable functions. In this framework, the complexity of the CME grows only linearly with the number of state space dimensions. This technique generalizes the so-called Hartree approximation, by using terms as needed in the finite sums decomposition for ensuring convergence. But noteworthy, the ease of the approximation allows for an easy treatment of unknown parameters (as is frequently the case when modeling gene regulatory networks, for instance). These unknown parameters can be considered as new space dimensions. In this way, the proposed method provides solutions for any value of the unknown parameters (within some interval of arbitrary size) in one execution of the program.

  6. A Dynamic Gene Regulatory Network Model That Recovers the Cyclic Behavior of Arabidopsis thaliana Cell Cycle

    PubMed Central

    Ortiz-Gutiérrez, Elizabeth; García-Cruz, Karla; Azpeitia, Eugenio; Castillo, Aaron; Sánchez, María de la Paz; Álvarez-Buylla, Elena R.

    2015-01-01

    Cell cycle control is fundamental in eukaryotic development. Several modeling efforts have been used to integrate the complex network of interacting molecular components involved in cell cycle dynamics. In this paper, we aimed at recovering the regulatory logic upstream of previously known components of cell cycle control, with the aim of understanding the mechanisms underlying the emergence of the cyclic behavior of such components. We focus on Arabidopsis thaliana, but given that many components of cell cycle regulation are conserved among eukaryotes, when experimental data for this system was not available, we considered experimental results from yeast and animal systems. We are proposing a Boolean gene regulatory network (GRN) that converges into only one robust limit cycle attractor that closely resembles the cyclic behavior of the key cell-cycle molecular components and other regulators considered here. We validate the model by comparing our in silico configurations with data from loss- and gain-of-function mutants, where the endocyclic behavior also was recovered. Additionally, we approximate a continuous model and recovered the temporal periodic expression profiles of the cell-cycle molecular components involved, thus suggesting that the single limit cycle attractor recovered with the Boolean model is not an artifact of its discrete and synchronous nature, but rather an emergent consequence of the inherent characteristics of the regulatory logic proposed here. This dynamical model, hence provides a novel theoretical framework to address cell cycle regulation in plants, and it can also be used to propose novel predictions regarding cell cycle regulation in other eukaryotes. PMID:26340681

  7. Coordination logic of the sensing machinery in the transcriptional regulatory network of Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Janga, Sarath Chandra; Salgado, Heladia; Martínez-Antonio, Agustino; Collado-Vides, Julio

    2007-01-01

    The active and inactive state of transcription factors in growing cells is usually directed by allosteric physicochemical signals or metabolites, which are in turn either produced in the cell or obtained from the environment by the activity of the products of effector genes. To understand the regulatory dynamics and to improve our knowledge about how transcription factors (TFs) respond to endogenous and exogenous signals in the bacterial model, Escherichia coli, we previously proposed to classify TFs into external, internal and hybrid sensing classes depending on the source of their allosteric or equivalent metabolite. Here we analyze how a cell uses its topological structures in the context of sensing machinery and show that, while feed forward loops (FFLs) tightly integrate internal and external sensing TFs connecting TFs from different layers of the hierarchical transcriptional regulatory network (TRN), bifan motifs frequently connect TFs belonging to the same sensing class and could act as a bridge between TFs originating from the same level in the hierarchy. We observe that modules identified in the regulatory network of E. coli are heterogeneous in sensing context with a clear combination of internal and external sensing categories depending on the physiological role played by the module. We also note that propensity of two-component response regulators increases at promoters, as the number of TFs regulating a target operon increases. Finally we show that evolutionary families of TFs do not show a tendency to preserve their sensing abilities. Our results provide a detailed panorama of the topological structures of E. coli TRN and the way TFs they compose off, sense their surroundings by coordinating responses.

  8. Hybrid method inference for the construction of cooperative regulatory network in human.

    PubMed

    Chebil, I; Nicolle, R; Santini, G; Rouveirol, C; Elati, M

    2014-06-01

    Reconstruction of large scale gene regulatory networks (GRNs in the following) is an important step for understanding the complex regulatory mechanisms within the cell. Many modeling approaches have been introduced to find the causal relationship between genes using expression data. However, they have been suffering from high dimensionality-large number of genes but a small number of samples, overfitting, heavy computation time and low interpretability. We have previously proposed an original Data Mining algorithm Licorn, that infers cooperative regulation network from expression datasets. In this work, we present an extension of Licorn to a hybrid inference method h-Licorn that uses search in both discrete and real valued spaces. Licorn's algorithm, using the discrete space to find cooperative regulation relationships fitting the target gene expression, has been shown to be powerful in identifying cooperative regulation relationships that are out of the scope of most GRN inference methods. Still, as many of related GRN inference techniques, Licorn suffers from a large number of false positives. We propose here an extension of Licorn with a numerical selection step, expressed as a linear regression problem, that effectively complements the discrete search of Licorn. We evaluate a bootstrapped version of h-Licorn on the in silico Dream5 dataset and show that h-Licorn has significantly higher performance than Licorn, and is competitive or outperforms state of the art GRN inference algorithms, especially when operating on small data sets. We also applied h-Licorn on a real dataset of human bladder cancer and show that it performs better than other methods in finding candidate regulatory interactions. In particular, solely based on gene expression data, h-Licorn is able to identify experimentally validated regulator cooperative relationships involved in cancer.

  9. The Influence of Assortativity on the Robustness of Signal-Integration Logic in Gene Regulatory Networks

    PubMed Central

    Pechenick, Dov A.; Payne, Joshua L.; Moore, Jason H.

    2011-01-01

    Gene regulatory networks (GRNs) drive the cellular processes that sustain life. To do so reliably, GRNs must be robust to perturbations, such as gene deletion and the addition or removal of regulatory interactions. GRNs must also be robust to genetic changes in regulatory regions that define the logic of signal-integration, as these changes can affect how specific combinations of regulatory signals are mapped to particular gene expression states. Previous theoretical analyses have demonstrated that the robustness of a GRN is influenced by its underlying topological properties, such as degree distribution and modularity. Another important topological property is assortativity, which measures the propensity with which nodes of similar connectivity are connected to one another. How assortativity influences the robustness of the signal-integration logic of GRNs remains an open question. Here, we use computational models of GRNs to investigate this relationship. We separately consider each of the three dynamical regimes of this model for a variety of degree distributions. We find that in the chaotic regime, robustness exhibits a pronounced increase as assortativity becomes more positive, while in the critical and ordered regimes, robustness is generally less sensitive to changes in assortativity. We attribute the increased robustness to a decrease in the duration of the gene expression pattern, which is caused by a reduction in the average size of a GRN’s in-components. This study provides the first direct evidence that assortativity influences the robustness of the signal-integration logic of computational models of GRNs, illuminates a mechanistic explanation for this influence, and furthers our understanding of the relationship between topology and robustness in complex biological systems. PMID:22155134

  10. The influence of assortativity on the robustness and evolvability of gene regulatory networks upon gene birth

    PubMed Central

    Pechenick, Dov A.; Moore, Jason H.; Payne, Joshua L.

    2013-01-01

    Gene regulatory networks (GRNs) represent the interactions between genes and gene products, which drive the gene expression patterns that produce cellular phenotypes. GRNs display a number of characteristics that are beneficial for the development and evolution of organisms. For example, they are often robust to genetic perturbation, such as mutations in regulatory regions or loss of gene function. Simultaneously, GRNs are often evolvable as these genetic perturbations are occasionally exploited to innovate novel regulatory programs. Several topological properties, such as degree distribution, are known to influence the robustness and evolvability of GRNs. Assortativity, which measures the propensity of nodes of similar connectivity to connect to one another, is a separate topological property that has recently been shown to influence the robustness of GRNs to point mutations in cis-regulatory regions. However, it remains to be seen how assortativity may influence the robustness and evolvability of GRNs to other forms of genetic perturbation, such as gene birth via duplication or de novo origination. Here, we employ a computational model of genetic regulation to investigate whether the assortativity of a GRN influences its robustness and evolvability upon gene birth. We find that the robustness of a GRN generally increases with increasing assortativity, while its evolvability generally decreases. However, the rate of change in robustness outpaces that of evolvability, resulting in an increased proportion of assortative GRNs that are simultaneously robust and evolvable. By providing a mechanistic explanation for these observations, this work extends our understanding of how the assortativity of a GRN influences its robustness and evolvability upon gene birth. PMID:23542384

  11. Regulatory networks between neurotrophins and miRNAs in brain diseases and cancers.

    PubMed

    Shi, Jian

    2015-02-01

    Neurotrophins are involved in many physiological and pathological processes in the nervous system. They regulate and modify signal transduction, transcription and translation in neurons. It is recently demonstrated that the neurotrophin expression is regulated by microRNAs (miRNAs), changing our views on neurotrophins and miRNAs. Generally, miRNAs regulate neurotrophins and their receptors in at least two ways: (1) miRNAs bind directly to the 3' untranslated region (UTR) of isoform-specific mRNAs and post-transcriptionally regulate their expression; (2) miRNAs bind to the 3' UTR of the regulatory factors of neurotrophins and regulate their expression. On the other hand, neurotrophins can regulate miRNAs. The results of BNDF research show that neurotrophins regulate miRNAs in at least three ways: (1) ERK stimulation enhances the activation of TRBP (HIV-1 TAR RNA-binding protein) and Dicer, leading to the upregulation of miRNA biogenesis; (2) ERK-dependent upregulation of Lin28a (RNA-binding proteins) blocks select miRNA biogenesis; (3) transcriptional regulation of miRNA expression through activation of transcription factors, including CREB and NF-κB. These regulatory processes integrate positive and negative regulatory loops in neurotrophin and miRNA signaling pathways, and also expand the function of neurotrophins and miRNAs. In this review, we summarize the current knowledge of the regulatory networks between neurotrophins and miRNAs in brain diseases and cancers, for which novel cutting edge therapeutic, delivery and diagnostic approaches are emerging.

  12. Regulatory networks between neurotrophins and miRNAs in brain diseases and cancers

    PubMed Central

    Shi, Jian

    2015-01-01

    Neurotrophins are involved in many physiological and pathological processes in the nervous system. They regulate and modify signal transduction, transcription and translation in neurons. It is recently demonstrated that the neurotrophin expression is regulated by microRNAs (miRNAs), changing our views on neurotrophins and miRNAs. Generally, miRNAs regulate neurotrophins and their receptors in at least two ways: (1) miRNAs bind directly to the 3′ untranslated region (UTR) of isoform-specific mRNAs and post-transcriptionally regulate their expression; (2) miRNAs bind to the 3′ UTR of the regulatory factors of neurotrophins and regulate their expression. On the other hand, neurotrophins can regulate miRNAs. The results of BNDF research show that neurotrophins regulate miRNAs in at least three ways: (1) ERK stimulation enhances the activation of TRBP (HIV-1 TAR RNA-binding protein) and Dicer, leading to the upregulation of miRNA biogenesis; (2) ERK-dependent upregulation of Lin28