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Sample records for higher eukaryotes mecanismes

  1. Overexpression of membrane proteins from higher eukaryotes in yeasts.

    PubMed

    Emmerstorfer, Anita; Wriessnegger, Tamara; Hirz, Melanie; Pichler, Harald

    2014-09-01

    Heterologous expression and characterisation of the membrane proteins of higher eukaryotes is of paramount interest in fundamental and applied research. Due to the rather simple and well-established methods for their genetic modification and cultivation, yeast cells are attractive host systems for recombinant protein production. This review provides an overview on the remarkable progress, and discusses pitfalls, in applying various yeast host strains for high-level expression of eukaryotic membrane proteins. In contrast to the cell lines of higher eukaryotes, yeasts permit efficient library screening methods. Modified yeasts are used as high-throughput screening tools for heterologous membrane protein functions or as benchmark for analysing drug-target relationships, e.g., by using yeasts as sensors. Furthermore, yeasts are powerful hosts for revealing interactions stabilising and/or activating membrane proteins. We also discuss the stress responses of yeasts upon heterologous expression of membrane proteins. Through co-expression of chaperones and/or optimising yeast cultivation and expression strategies, yield-optimised hosts have been created for membrane protein crystallography or efficient whole-cell production of fine chemicals.

  2. Overexpression of membrane proteins from higher eukaryotes in yeasts.

    PubMed

    Emmerstorfer, Anita; Wriessnegger, Tamara; Hirz, Melanie; Pichler, Harald

    2014-09-01

    Heterologous expression and characterisation of the membrane proteins of higher eukaryotes is of paramount interest in fundamental and applied research. Due to the rather simple and well-established methods for their genetic modification and cultivation, yeast cells are attractive host systems for recombinant protein production. This review provides an overview on the remarkable progress, and discusses pitfalls, in applying various yeast host strains for high-level expression of eukaryotic membrane proteins. In contrast to the cell lines of higher eukaryotes, yeasts permit efficient library screening methods. Modified yeasts are used as high-throughput screening tools for heterologous membrane protein functions or as benchmark for analysing drug-target relationships, e.g., by using yeasts as sensors. Furthermore, yeasts are powerful hosts for revealing interactions stabilising and/or activating membrane proteins. We also discuss the stress responses of yeasts upon heterologous expression of membrane proteins. Through co-expression of chaperones and/or optimising yeast cultivation and expression strategies, yield-optimised hosts have been created for membrane protein crystallography or efficient whole-cell production of fine chemicals. PMID:25070595

  3. Regulation of myosin II during cytokinesis in higher eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Matsumura, Fumio

    2005-07-01

    Cellular myosin II is the principal motor responsible for cytokinesis. In higher eukaryotes, phosphorylation of the regulatory light chain (MLC) of myosin II is a primary means of activating myosin II and is known to be crucial for the execution of cell division. Because signals transmitted by the mitotic spindle coordinate key spatial and temporal aspects of cytokinesis, such signals should ultimately function to activate myosin II. Thus, it follows that identification of regulatory factors involved in MLC phosphorylation should elucidate the nature of spindle-derived regulatory signals and lead to a model for how they control cytokinesis. However, the identity of these upstream molecules remains elusive. This review (which is part of the Cytokinesis series) summarizes current views of the regulatory pathway controlling MLC phosphorylation and features four candidate molecules that are likely immediate upstream myosin regulators. I discuss proposed functions for MLCK, ROCK, citron kinase and myosin phosphatase during cytokinesis and consider the possibility of a link between these molecules and the signals transmitted by the mitotic spindle.

  4. Programmable Site-Specific Nucleases for Targeted Genome Engineering in Higher Eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Govindan, Ganesan; Ramalingam, Sivaprakash

    2016-11-01

    Recent advances in the targeted genome engineering enable molecular biologists to generate sequence specific modifications with greater efficiency and higher specificity in complex eukaryotic genomes. Programmable site-specific DNA cleavage reagents and cellular DNA repair mechanisms have made this possible. These reagents have become powerful tools for delivering a site-specific genomic double-strand break (DSB) at the desired chromosomal locus, which produces sequence alterations through error-prone non-homologous end joining (NHEJ) resulting in gene inactivations/knockouts. Alternatively, the DSB can be repaired through homology-directed repair (HDR) using a donor DNA template, which leads to the introduction of desired sequence modifications at the predetermined site. Here, we summarize the role of three classes of nucleases; zinc finger nucleases (ZFNs), transcription activator like effector nucleases (TALENs), and clustered regularly interspaced palindromic repeats (CRISPR)/CRISPR associated protein 9 (Cas9) system in achieving targeted genome modifications. Further, we discuss the progress towards the applications of programmable site-specific nucleases (SSNs) in treating human diseases and other biological applications in economically important higher eukaryotic organisms such as plants and livestock. J. Cell. Physiol. 231: 2380-2392, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26945523

  5. Guidelines for the use and interpretation of assays for monitoring autophagy in higher eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Klionsky, Daniel J.; Abeliovich, Hagai; Agostinis, Patrizia; Agrawal, Devendra K.; Aliev, Gjumrakch; Askew, David S.; Baba, Misuzu; Baehrecke, Eric H.; Bahr, Ben A.; Ballabio, Andrea; Bamber, Bruce A.; Bassham, Diane C.; Bergamini, Ettore; Bi, Xiaoning; Biard-Piechaczyk, Martine; Blum, Janice S.; Bredesen, Dale E.; Brodsky, Jeffrey L.; Brumell, John H.; Brunk, Ulf T.; Bursch, Wilfried; Camougrand, Nadine; Cebollero, Eduardo; Cecconi, Francesco; Chen, Yingyu; Chin, Lih-Shen; Choi, Augustine; Chu, Charleen T.; Chung, Jongkyeong; Clarke, Peter G.H.; Clark, Robert S.B.; Clarke, Steven G.; Clavé, Corinne; Cleveland, John L.; Codogno, Patrice; Colombo, María I.; Coto-Montes, Ana; Cregg, James M.; Cuervo, Ana Maria; Debnath, Jayanta; Demarchi, Francesca; Dennis, Patrick B.; Dennis, Phillip A.; Deretic, Vojo; Devenish, Rodney J.; Di Sano, Federica; Dice, J. Fred; DiFiglia, Marian; Dinesh-Kumar, Savithramma; Distelhorst, Clark W.; Djavaheri-Mergny, Mojgan; Dorsey, Frank C.; Dröge, Wulf; Dron, Michel; Dunn, William A.; Duszenko, Michael; Eissa, N. Tony; Elazar, Zvulun; Esclatine, Audrey; Eskelinen, Eeva-Liisa; Fésüs, László; Finley, Kim D.; Fuentes, José M.; Fueyo, Juan; Fujisaki, Kozo; Galliot, Brigitte; Gao, Fen-Biao; Gewirtz, David A.; Gibson, Spencer B.; Gohla, Antje; Goldberg, Alfred L.; Gonzalez, Ramon; González-Estévez, Cristina; Gorski, Sharon; Gottlieb, Roberta A.; Häussinger, Dieter; He, You-Wen; Heidenreich, Kim; Hill, Joseph A.; Høyer-Hansen, Maria; Hu, Xun; Huang, Wei-Pang; Iwasaki, Akiko; Jäättelä, Marja; Jackson, William T.; Jiang, Xuejun; Jin, Shengkan; Johansen, Terje; Jung, Jae U.; Kadowaki, Motoni; Kang, Chanhee; Kelekar, Ameeta; Kessel, David H.; Kiel, Jan A.K.W.; Kim, Hong Pyo; Kimchi, Adi; Kinsella, Timothy J.; Kiselyov, Kirill; Kitamoto, Katsuhiko; Knecht, Erwin; Komatsu, Masaaki; Kominami, Eiki; Kondo, Seiji; Kovács, Attila L.; Kroemer, Guido; Kuan, Chia-Yi; Kumar, Rakesh; Kundu, Mondira; Landry, Jacques; Laporte, Marianne; Le, Weidong; Lei, Huan-Yao; Lenardo, Michael J.; Levine, Beth; Lieberman, Andrew; Lim, Kah-Leong; Lin, Fu-Cheng; Liou, Willisa; Liu, Leroy F.; Lopez-Berestein, Gabriel; López-Otín, Carlos; Lu, Bo; Macleod, Kay F.; Malorni, Walter; Martinet, Wim; Matsuoka, Ken; Mautner, Josef; Meijer, Alfred J.; Meléndez, Alicia; Michels, Paul; Miotto, Giovanni; Mistiaen, Wilhelm P.; Mizushima, Noboru; Mograbi, Baharia; Monastyrska, Iryna; Moore, Michael N.; Moreira, Paula I.; Moriyasu, Yuji; Motyl, Tomasz; Münz, Christian; Murphy, Leon O.; Naqvi, Naweed I.; Neufeld, Thomas P.; Nishino, Ichizo; Nixon, Ralph A.; Noda, Takeshi; Nürnberg, Bernd; Ogawa, Michinaga; Oleinick, Nancy L.; Olsen, Laura J.; Ozpolat, Bulent; Paglin, Shoshana; Palmer, Glen E.; Papassideri, Issidora; Parkes, Miles; Perlmutter, David H.; Perry, George; Piacentini, Mauro; Pinkas-Kramarski, Ronit; Prescott, Mark; Proikas-Cezanne, Tassula; Raben, Nina; Rami, Abdelhaq; Reggiori, Fulvio; Rohrer, Bärbel; Rubinsztein, David C.; Ryan, Kevin M.; Sadoshima, Junichi; Sakagami, Hiroshi; Sakai, Yasuyoshi; Sandri, Marco; Sasakawa, Chihiro; Sass, Miklós; Schneider, Claudio; Seglen, Per O.; Seleverstov, Oleksandr; Settleman, Jeffrey; Shacka, John J.; Shapiro, Irving M.; Sibirny, Andrei; Silva-Zacarin, Elaine C.M.; Simon, Hans-Uwe; Simone, Cristiano; Simonsen, Anne; Smith, Mark A.; Spanel-Borowski, Katharina; Srinivas, Vickram; Steeves, Meredith; Stenmark, Harald; Stromhaug, Per E.; Subauste, Carlos S.; Sugimoto, Seiichiro; Sulzer, David; Suzuki, Toshihiko; Swanson, Michele S.; Tabas, Ira; Takeshita, Fumihiko; Talbot, Nicholas J.; Tallóczy, Zsolt; Tanaka, Keiji; Tanaka, Kozo; Tanida, Isei; Taylor, Graham S.; Taylor, J. Paul; Terman, Alexei; Tettamanti, Gianluca; Thompson, Craig B.; Thumm, Michael; Tolkovsky, Aviva M.; Tooze, Sharon A.; Truant, Ray; Tumanovska, Lesya V.; Uchiyama, Yasuo; Ueno, Takashi; Uzcátegui, Néstor L.; van der Klei, Ida; Vaquero, Eva C.; Vellai, Tibor; Vogel, Michael W.; Wang, Hong-Gang; Webster, Paul; Wiley, John W.; Xi, Zhijun; Xiao, Gutian; Yahalom, Joachim; Yang, Jin-Ming; Yap, George; Yin, Xiao-Ming; Yoshimori, Tamotsu; Yu, Li; Yue, Zhenyu; Yuzaki, Michisuke; Zabirnyk, Olga; Zheng, Xiaoxiang; Zhu, Xiongwei; Deter, Russell L.

    2009-01-01

    Research in autophagy continues to accelerate,1 and as a result many new scientists are entering the field. Accordingly, it is important to establish a standard set of criteria for monitoring macroautophagy in different organisms. Recent reviews have described the range of assays that have been used for this purpose.2,3 There are many useful and convenient methods that can be used to monitor macroautophagy in yeast, but relatively few in other model systems, and there is much confusion regarding acceptable methods to measure macroautophagy in higher eukaryotes. A key point that needs to be emphasized is that there is a difference between measurements that monitor the numbers of autophagosomes versus those that measure flux through the autophagy pathway; thus, a block in macroautophagy that results in autophagosome accumulation needs to be differentiated from fully functional autophagy that includes delivery to, and degradation within, lysosomes (in most higher eukaryotes) or the vacuole (in plants and fungi). Here, we present a set of guidelines for the selection and interpretation of the methods that can be used by investigators who are attempting to examine macroautophagy and related processes, as well as by reviewers who need to provide realistic and reasonable critiques of papers that investigate these processes. This set of guidelines is not meant to be a formulaic set of rules, because the appropriate assays depend in part on the question being asked and the system being used. In addition, we emphasize that no individual assay is guaranteed to be the most appropriate one in every situation, and we strongly recommend the use of multiple assays to verify an autophagic response. PMID:18188003

  6. Guidelines for the use and interpretation of assays for monitoring autophagy in higher eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Klionsky, Daniel J; Abeliovich, Hagai; Agostinis, Patrizia; Agrawal, Devendra K; Aliev, Gjumrakch; Askew, David S; Baba, Misuzu; Baehrecke, Eric H; Bahr, Ben A; Ballabio, Andrea; Bamber, Bruce A; Bassham, Diane C; Bergamini, Ettore; Bi, Xiaoning; Biard-Piechaczyk, Martine; Blum, Janice S; Bredesen, Dale E; Brodsky, Jeffrey L; Brumell, John H; Brunk, Ulf T; Bursch, Wilfried; Camougrand, Nadine; Cebollero, Eduardo; Cecconi, Francesco; Chen, Yingyu; Chin, Lih-Shen; Choi, Augustine; Chu, Charleen T; Chung, Jongkyeong; Clarke, Peter G H; Clark, Robert S B; Clarke, Steven G; Clavé, Corinne; Cleveland, John L; Codogno, Patrice; Colombo, María I; Coto-Montes, Ana; Cregg, James M; Cuervo, Ana Maria; Debnath, Jayanta; Demarchi, Francesca; Dennis, Patrick B; Dennis, Phillip A; Deretic, Vojo; Devenish, Rodney J; Di Sano, Federica; Dice, J Fred; Difiglia, Marian; Dinesh-Kumar, Savithramma; Distelhorst, Clark W; Djavaheri-Mergny, Mojgan; Dorsey, Frank C; Dröge, Wulf; Dron, Michel; Dunn, William A; Duszenko, Michael; Eissa, N Tony; Elazar, Zvulun; Esclatine, Audrey; Eskelinen, Eeva-Liisa; Fésüs, László; Finley, Kim D; Fuentes, José M; Fueyo, Juan; Fujisaki, Kozo; Galliot, Brigitte; Gao, Fen-Biao; Gewirtz, David A; Gibson, Spencer B; Gohla, Antje; Goldberg, Alfred L; Gonzalez, Ramon; González-Estévez, Cristina; Gorski, Sharon; Gottlieb, Roberta A; Häussinger, Dieter; He, You-Wen; Heidenreich, Kim; Hill, Joseph A; Høyer-Hansen, Maria; Hu, Xun; Huang, Wei-Pang; Iwasaki, Akiko; Jäättelä, Marja; Jackson, William T; Jiang, Xuejun; Jin, Shengkan; Johansen, Terje; Jung, Jae U; Kadowaki, Motoni; Kang, Chanhee; Kelekar, Ameeta; Kessel, David H; Kiel, Jan A K W; Kim, Hong Pyo; Kimchi, Adi; Kinsella, Timothy J; Kiselyov, Kirill; Kitamoto, Katsuhiko; Knecht, Erwin; Komatsu, Masaaki; Kominami, Eiki; Kondo, Seiji; Kovács, Attila L; Kroemer, Guido; Kuan, Chia-Yi; Kumar, Rakesh; Kundu, Mondira; Landry, Jacques; Laporte, Marianne; Le, Weidong; Lei, Huan-Yao; Lenardo, Michael J; Levine, Beth; Lieberman, Andrew; Lim, Kah-Leong; Lin, Fu-Cheng; Liou, Willisa; Liu, Leroy F; Lopez-Berestein, Gabriel; López-Otín, Carlos; Lu, Bo; Macleod, Kay F; Malorni, Walter; Martinet, Wim; Matsuoka, Ken; Mautner, Josef; Meijer, Alfred J; Meléndez, Alicia; Michels, Paul; Miotto, Giovanni; Mistiaen, Wilhelm P; Mizushima, Noboru; Mograbi, Baharia; Monastyrska, Iryna; Moore, Michael N; Moreira, Paula I; Moriyasu, Yuji; Motyl, Tomasz; Münz, Christian; Murphy, Leon O; Naqvi, Naweed I; Neufeld, Thomas P; Nishino, Ichizo; Nixon, Ralph A; Noda, Takeshi; Nürnberg, Bernd; Ogawa, Michinaga; Oleinick, Nancy L; Olsen, Laura J; Ozpolat, Bulent; Paglin, Shoshana; Palmer, Glen E; Papassideri, Issidora; Parkes, Miles; Perlmutter, David H; Perry, George; Piacentini, Mauro; Pinkas-Kramarski, Ronit; Prescott, Mark; Proikas-Cezanne, Tassula; Raben, Nina; Rami, Abdelhaq; Reggiori, Fulvio; Rohrer, Bärbel; Rubinsztein, David C; Ryan, Kevin M; Sadoshima, Junichi; Sakagami, Hiroshi; Sakai, Yasuyoshi; Sandri, Marco; Sasakawa, Chihiro; Sass, Miklós; Schneider, Claudio; Seglen, Per O; Seleverstov, Oleksandr; Settleman, Jeffrey; Shacka, John J; Shapiro, Irving M; Sibirny, Andrei; Silva-Zacarin, Elaine C M; Simon, Hans-Uwe; Simone, Cristiano; Simonsen, Anne; Smith, Mark A; Spanel-Borowski, Katharina; Srinivas, Vickram; Steeves, Meredith; Stenmark, Harald; Stromhaug, Per E; Subauste, Carlos S; Sugimoto, Seiichiro; Sulzer, David; Suzuki, Toshihiko; Swanson, Michele S; Tabas, Ira; Takeshita, Fumihiko; Talbot, Nicholas J; Tallóczy, Zsolt; Tanaka, Keiji; Tanaka, Kozo; Tanida, Isei; Taylor, Graham S; Taylor, J Paul; Terman, Alexei; Tettamanti, Gianluca; Thompson, Craig B; Thumm, Michael; Tolkovsky, Aviva M; Tooze, Sharon A; Truant, Ray; Tumanovska, Lesya V; Uchiyama, Yasuo; Ueno, Takashi; Uzcátegui, Néstor L; van der Klei, Ida; Vaquero, Eva C; Vellai, Tibor; Vogel, Michael W; Wang, Hong-Gang; Webster, Paul; Wiley, John W; Xi, Zhijun; Xiao, Gutian; Yahalom, Joachim; Yang, Jin-Ming; Yap, George; Yin, Xiao-Ming; Yoshimori, Tamotsu; Yu, Li; Yue, Zhenyu; Yuzaki, Michisuke; Zabirnyk, Olga; Zheng, Xiaoxiang; Zhu, Xiongwei; Deter, Russell L

    2008-02-01

    Research in autophagy continues to accelerate,(1) and as a result many new scientists are entering the field. Accordingly, it is important to establish a standard set of criteria for monitoring macroautophagy in different organisms. Recent reviews have described the range of assays that have been used for this purpose.(2,3) There are many useful and convenient methods that can be used to monitor macroautophagy in yeast, but relatively few in other model systems, and there is much confusion regarding acceptable methods to measure macroautophagy in higher eukaryotes. A key point that needs to be emphasized is that there is a difference between measurements that monitor the numbers of autophagosomes versus those that measure flux through the autophagy pathway; thus, a block in macroautophagy that results in autophagosome accumulation needs to be differentiated from fully functional autophagy that includes delivery to, and degradation within, lysosomes (in most higher eukaryotes) or the vacuole (in plants and fungi). Here, we present a set of guidelines for the selection and interpretation of the methods that can be used by investigators who are attempting to examine macroautophagy and related processes, as well as by reviewers who need to provide realistic and reasonable critiques of papers that investigate these processes. This set of guidelines is not meant to be a formulaic set of rules, because the appropriate assays depend in part on the question being asked and the system being used. In addition, we emphasize that no individual assay is guaranteed to be the most appropriate one in every situation, and we strongly recommend the use of multiple assays to verify an autophagic response.

  7. UPRT, a suicide-gene therapy candidate in higher eukaryotes, is required for Drosophila larval growth and normal adult lifespan

    PubMed Central

    Ghosh, Arpan C.; Shimell, MaryJane; Leof, Emma R.; Haley, Macy J.; O’Connor, Michael B.

    2015-01-01

    Uracil phosphoribosyltransferase (UPRT) is a pyrimidine salvage pathway enzyme that catalyzes the conversion of uracil to uridine monophosphate (UMP). The enzyme is highly conserved from prokaryotes to humans and yet phylogenetic evidence suggests that UPRT homologues from higher-eukaryotes, including Drosophila, are incapable of binding uracil. Purified human UPRT also do not show any enzymatic activity in vitro, making microbial UPRT an attractive candidate for anti-microbial drug development, suicide-gene therapy, and cell-specific mRNA labeling techniques. Nevertheless, the enzymatic site of UPRT remains conserved across the animal kingdom indicating an in vivo role for the enzyme. We find that the Drosophila UPRT homologue, krishah (kri), codes for an enzyme that is required for larval growth, pre-pupal/pupal viability and long-term adult lifespan. Our findings suggest that UPRT from all higher eukaryotes is likely enzymatically active in vivo and challenges the previous notion that the enzyme is non-essential in higher eukaryotes and cautions against targeting the enzyme for therapeutic purposes. Our findings also suggest that expression of the endogenous UPRT gene will likely cause background incorporation when using microbial UPRT as a cell-specific mRNA labeling reagent in higher eukaryotes. PMID:26271729

  8. The new higher level classification of eukaryotes with emphasis on the taxonomy of protists.

    PubMed

    Adl, Sina M; Simpson, Alastair G B; Farmer, Mark A; Andersen, Robert A; Anderson, O Roger; Barta, John R; Bowser, Samuel S; Brugerolle, Guy; Fensome, Robert A; Fredericq, Suzanne; James, Timothy Y; Karpov, Sergei; Kugrens, Paul; Krug, John; Lane, Christopher E; Lewis, Louise A; Lodge, Jean; Lynn, Denis H; Mann, David G; McCourt, Richard M; Mendoza, Leonel; Moestrup, Ojvind; Mozley-Standridge, Sharon E; Nerad, Thomas A; Shearer, Carol A; Smirnov, Alexey V; Spiegel, Frederick W; Taylor, Max F J R

    2005-01-01

    This revision of the classification of unicellular eukaryotes updates that of Levine et al. (1980) for the protozoa and expands it to include other protists. Whereas the previous revision was primarily to incorporate the results of ultrastructural studies, this revision incorporates results from both ultrastructural research since 1980 and molecular phylogenetic studies. We propose a scheme that is based on nameless ranked systematics. The vocabulary of the taxonomy is updated, particularly to clarify the naming of groups that have been repositioned. We recognize six clusters of eukaryotes that may represent the basic groupings similar to traditional "kingdoms." The multicellular lineages emerged from within monophyletic protist lineages: animals and fungi from Opisthokonta, plants from Archaeplastida, and brown algae from Stramenopiles.

  9. A genetic system to assess in vivo the functions of histones and histone modifications in higher eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Günesdogan, Ufuk; Jäckle, Herbert; Herzig, Alf

    2010-10-01

    Despite the fundamental role of canonical histones in nucleosome structure, there is no experimental system for higher eukaryotes in which basic questions about histone function can be directly addressed. We developed a new genetic tool for Drosophila melanogaster in which the canonical histone complement can be replaced with multiple copies of experimentally modified histone transgenes. This new histone-replacement system provides a well-defined and direct cellular assay system for histone function with which to critically test models in chromatin biology dealing with chromatin assembly, variant histone functions and the biological significance of distinct histone modifications in a multicellular organism.

  10. Statistical analysis of the exon-intron structure of higher and lower eukaryote genes.

    PubMed

    Kriventseva, E V; Gelfand, M S

    1999-10-01

    Statistics of the exon-intron structure and splicing sites of several diverse eukaryotes was studied. The yeast exon-intron structures have a number of unique features. A yeast gene usually have at most one intron. The branch site is strongly conserved, whereas the polypirimidine tract is short. Long yeast introns tend to have stronger acceptor sites. In other species the branch site is less conserved and often cannot be determined. In non-yeast samples there is an almost universal correlation between lengths of neighboring exons (all samples excluding protists) and correlation between lengths of neighboring introns (human, drosophila, protists). On the average first introns are longer, and anomalously long introns are usually first introns in a gene. There is a universal preference for exons and exon pairs with the (total) length divisible by 3. Introns positioned between codons are preferred, whereas those positioned between the first and second positions in codon are avoided. The choice of A or G at the third position of intron (the donor splice sites generally prefer purines at this position) is correlated with the overall GC-composition of the gene. In all samples dinucleotide AG is avoided in the region preceding the acceptor site.

  11. The histone modification pattern of active genes revealed through genome-wide chromatin analysis of a higher eukaryote

    PubMed Central

    Schübeler, Dirk; MacAlpine, David M.; Scalzo, David; Wirbelauer, Christiane; Kooperberg, Charles; van Leeuwen, Fred; Gottschling, Daniel E.; O'Neill, Laura P.; Turner, Bryan M.; Delrow, Jeffrey; Bell, Stephen P.; Groudine, Mark

    2004-01-01

    The covalent modification of nucleosomal histones has emerged as a major determinant of chromatin structure and gene activity. To understand the interplay between various histone modifications, including acetylation and methylation, we performed a genome-wide chromatin structure analysis in a higher eukaryote. We found a binary pattern of histone modifications among euchromatic genes, with active genes being hyperacetylated for H3 and H4 and hypermethylated at Lys 4 and Lys 79 of H3, and inactive genes being hypomethylated and deacetylated at the same residues. Furthermore, the degree of modification correlates with the level of transcription, and modifications are largely restricted to transcribed regions, suggesting that their regulation is tightly linked to polymerase activity. PMID:15175259

  12. A java applet for exploring the new higher level classification of eukaryotes with emphasis on the taxonomy of protists.

    PubMed

    Wolf, Matthias; Seibel, Philipp N; Dandekar, Thomas; Lynn, Denis H

    2006-01-01

    We have converted the hierarchically organized new higher level classification of eukaryotes with emphasis on the taxonomy of protists proposed by Adl et al. into an interactive and dynamic Java applet. The current version of the applet can be accessed via http://phylogenetics.bioapps.biozentrum.uni-wuerzburg.de/etv. We use the layout from a Degree-of-Interest tree (DOITree) that effectively displays all the taxonomic information as well as the phylogenetic relationships described in the original article by Adl et al. The tree was made using the Prefuse Toolkit for interactive information visualization. All browsers capable of using Java applets will be able to view the tree. The applet is freely available for scientists, teachers, and students.

  13. A Narf-like gene from Cryptosporidium parvum resembles homologues observed in aerobic protists and higher eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Stejskal, Frantisek; Slapeta, Jan; Ctrnáctá, Vlasta; Keithly, Janet S

    2003-12-01

    Here we report a Narf-like gene from the apicomplexan Cryptosporidium parvum (CpNARF). CpNARF is an intronless, single-copy gene of 1680 bp which encodes a putative protein of 560 amino acids with a calculated molecular mass of 63.1 kDa. This gene contains a single highly conserved N-terminal iron-sulfur cluster ([4Fe-4S]) binding site, as well as most of the H-cluster conserved residues. Reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction analysis indicates that CpNARF is expressed by the intracellular stages of C. parvum. Although the function of this gene is as yet unknown, phylogenetic analyses suggest that CpNARF belongs to the group of NARF-like proteins from aerobic protists and higher eukaryotes, which are thought to have had an ancestor in common with [Fe]-hydrogenases.

  14. Directed evolution of G protein-coupled receptors in yeast for higher functional production in eukaryotic expression hosts.

    PubMed

    Schütz, Marco; Schöppe, Jendrik; Sedlák, Erik; Hillenbrand, Matthias; Nagy-Davidescu, Gabriela; Ehrenmann, Janosch; Klenk, Christoph; Egloff, Pascal; Kummer, Lutz; Plückthun, Andreas

    2016-02-25

    Despite recent successes, many G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) remained refractory to detailed molecular studies due to insufficient production yields, even in the most sophisticated eukaryotic expression systems. Here we introduce a robust method employing directed evolution of GPCRs in yeast that allows fast and efficient generation of receptor variants which show strongly increased functional production levels in eukaryotic expression hosts. Shown by evolving three different receptors in this study, the method is widely applicable, even for GPCRs which are very difficult to express. The evolved variants showed up to a 26-fold increase of functional production in insect cells compared to the wild-type receptors. Next to the increased production, the obtained variants exhibited improved biophysical properties, while functional properties remained largely unaffected. Thus, the presented method broadens the portfolio of GPCRs accessible for detailed investigations. Interestingly, the functional production of GPCRs in yeast can be further increased by induced host adaptation.

  15. Directed evolution of G protein-coupled receptors in yeast for higher functional production in eukaryotic expression hosts

    PubMed Central

    Schütz, Marco; Schöppe, Jendrik; Sedlák, Erik; Hillenbrand, Matthias; Nagy-Davidescu, Gabriela; Ehrenmann, Janosch; Klenk, Christoph; Egloff, Pascal; Kummer, Lutz; Plückthun, Andreas

    2016-01-01

    Despite recent successes, many G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) remained refractory to detailed molecular studies due to insufficient production yields, even in the most sophisticated eukaryotic expression systems. Here we introduce a robust method employing directed evolution of GPCRs in yeast that allows fast and efficient generation of receptor variants which show strongly increased functional production levels in eukaryotic expression hosts. Shown by evolving three different receptors in this study, the method is widely applicable, even for GPCRs which are very difficult to express. The evolved variants showed up to a 26-fold increase of functional production in insect cells compared to the wild-type receptors. Next to the increased production, the obtained variants exhibited improved biophysical properties, while functional properties remained largely unaffected. Thus, the presented method broadens the portfolio of GPCRs accessible for detailed investigations. Interestingly, the functional production of GPCRs in yeast can be further increased by induced host adaptation. PMID:26911446

  16. Directed evolution of G protein-coupled receptors in yeast for higher functional production in eukaryotic expression hosts.

    PubMed

    Schütz, Marco; Schöppe, Jendrik; Sedlák, Erik; Hillenbrand, Matthias; Nagy-Davidescu, Gabriela; Ehrenmann, Janosch; Klenk, Christoph; Egloff, Pascal; Kummer, Lutz; Plückthun, Andreas

    2016-01-01

    Despite recent successes, many G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) remained refractory to detailed molecular studies due to insufficient production yields, even in the most sophisticated eukaryotic expression systems. Here we introduce a robust method employing directed evolution of GPCRs in yeast that allows fast and efficient generation of receptor variants which show strongly increased functional production levels in eukaryotic expression hosts. Shown by evolving three different receptors in this study, the method is widely applicable, even for GPCRs which are very difficult to express. The evolved variants showed up to a 26-fold increase of functional production in insect cells compared to the wild-type receptors. Next to the increased production, the obtained variants exhibited improved biophysical properties, while functional properties remained largely unaffected. Thus, the presented method broadens the portfolio of GPCRs accessible for detailed investigations. Interestingly, the functional production of GPCRs in yeast can be further increased by induced host adaptation. PMID:26911446

  17. Photosensory transduction in unicellular eukaryotes: a comparison between related ciliates Blepharisma japonicum and Stentor coeruleus and photoreceptor cells of higher organisms.

    PubMed

    Sobierajska, Katarzyna; Fabczak, Hanna; Fabczak, Stanisław

    2006-06-01

    Blepharisma japonicum and Stentor coeruleus are related ciliates, conspicuous by their photosensitivity. They are capable of avoiding illuminated areas in the surrounding medium, gathering exclusively in most shaded places (photodispersal). Such behaviour results mainly from motile photophobic response occurring in ciliates. This light-avoiding response is observed during a relatively rapid increase in illumination intensity (light stimulus) and consists of cessation of cell movement, a period of backward movement (ciliary reversal), followed by a forward swimming, usually in a new direction. The photosensitivity of ciliates is ascribed to their photoreceptor system, composed of pigment granules, containing the endogenous photoreceptor -- blepharismin in Blepharisma japonicum, and stentorin in Stentor coeruleus. A light stimulus, applied to both ciliates activates specific stimulus transduction processes leading to the electrical changes at the plasma membrane, correlated with a ciliary reversal during photophobic response. These data indicate that both ciliates Blepharisma japonicum and Stentor coeruleus, the lower eukaryotes, are capable of transducing the perceived light stimuli in a manner taking place in some photoreceptor cells of higher eukaryotes. Similarities and differences concerning particular stages of light transduction in eukaryotes at different evolutional levels are discussed in this article. PMID:16488618

  18. Photosensory transduction in unicellular eukaryotes: a comparison between related ciliates Blepharisma japonicum and Stentor coeruleus and photoreceptor cells of higher organisms.

    PubMed

    Sobierajska, Katarzyna; Fabczak, Hanna; Fabczak, Stanisław

    2006-06-01

    Blepharisma japonicum and Stentor coeruleus are related ciliates, conspicuous by their photosensitivity. They are capable of avoiding illuminated areas in the surrounding medium, gathering exclusively in most shaded places (photodispersal). Such behaviour results mainly from motile photophobic response occurring in ciliates. This light-avoiding response is observed during a relatively rapid increase in illumination intensity (light stimulus) and consists of cessation of cell movement, a period of backward movement (ciliary reversal), followed by a forward swimming, usually in a new direction. The photosensitivity of ciliates is ascribed to their photoreceptor system, composed of pigment granules, containing the endogenous photoreceptor -- blepharismin in Blepharisma japonicum, and stentorin in Stentor coeruleus. A light stimulus, applied to both ciliates activates specific stimulus transduction processes leading to the electrical changes at the plasma membrane, correlated with a ciliary reversal during photophobic response. These data indicate that both ciliates Blepharisma japonicum and Stentor coeruleus, the lower eukaryotes, are capable of transducing the perceived light stimuli in a manner taking place in some photoreceptor cells of higher eukaryotes. Similarities and differences concerning particular stages of light transduction in eukaryotes at different evolutional levels are discussed in this article.

  19. Eukaryotic origins.

    PubMed

    Lake, James A

    2015-09-26

    The origin of the eukaryotes is a fundamental scientific question that for over 30 years has generated a spirited debate between the competing Archaea (or three domains) tree and the eocyte tree. As eukaryotes ourselves, humans have a personal interest in our origins. Eukaryotes contain their defining organelle, the nucleus, after which they are named. They have a complex evolutionary history, over time acquiring multiple organelles, including mitochondria, chloroplasts, smooth and rough endoplasmic reticula, and other organelles all of which may hint at their origins. It is the evolutionary history of the nucleus and their other organelles that have intrigued molecular evolutionists, myself included, for the past 30 years and which continues to hold our interest as increasingly compelling evidence favours the eocyte tree. As with any orthodoxy, it takes time to embrace new concepts and techniques.

  20. Eukaryotic origins

    PubMed Central

    Lake, James A.

    2015-01-01

    The origin of the eukaryotes is a fundamental scientific question that for over 30 years has generated a spirited debate between the competing Archaea (or three domains) tree and the eocyte tree. As eukaryotes ourselves, humans have a personal interest in our origins. Eukaryotes contain their defining organelle, the nucleus, after which they are named. They have a complex evolutionary history, over time acquiring multiple organelles, including mitochondria, chloroplasts, smooth and rough endoplasmic reticula, and other organelles all of which may hint at their origins. It is the evolutionary history of the nucleus and their other organelles that have intrigued molecular evolutionists, myself included, for the past 30 years and which continues to hold our interest as increasingly compelling evidence favours the eocyte tree. As with any orthodoxy, it takes time to embrace new concepts and techniques. PMID:26323753

  1. Structural disorder in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Pancsa, Rita; Tompa, Peter

    2012-01-01

    Based on early bioinformatic studies on a handful of species, the frequency of structural disorder of proteins is generally thought to be much higher in eukaryotes than in prokaryotes. To refine this view, we present here a comparative prediction study and analysis of 194 fully described eukaryotic proteomes and 87 reference prokaryotes for structural disorder. We found that structural disorder does distinguish eukaryotes from prokaryotes, but its frequency spans a very wide range in the two superkingdoms that largely overlap. The number of disordered binding regions and different Pfam domain types also contribute to distinguish eukaryotes from prokaryotes. Unexpectedly, the highest levels--and highest variability--of predicted disorder is found in protists, i.e. single-celled eukaryotes, often surpassing more complex eukaryote organisms, plants and animals. This trend contrasts with that of the number of domain types, which increases rather monotonously toward more complex organisms. The level of structural disorder appears to be strongly correlated with lifestyle, because some obligate intracellular parasites and endosymbionts have the lowest levels, whereas host-changing parasites have the highest level of predicted disorder. We conclude that protists have been the evolutionary hot-bed of experimentation with structural disorder, in a period when structural disorder was actively invented and the major functional classes of disordered proteins established.

  2. The complete sequence of a heterochromatic island from a higher eukaryote. The Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, Washington University Genome Sequencing Center, and PE Biosystems Arabidopsis Sequencing Consortium.

    PubMed

    2000-02-01

    Heterochromatin, constitutively condensed chromosomal material, is widespread among eukaryotes but incompletely characterized at the nucleotide level. We have sequenced and analyzed 2.1 megabases (Mb) of Arabidopsis thaliana chromosome 4 that includes 0.5-0.7 Mb of isolated heterochromatin that resembles the chromosomal knobs described by Barbara McClintock in maize. This isolated region has a low density of expressed genes, low levels of recombination and a low incidence of genetrap insertion. Satellite repeats were absent, but tandem arrays of long repeats and many transposons were found. Methylation of these sequences was dependent on chromatin remodeling. Clustered repeats were associated with condensed chromosomal domains elsewhere. The complete sequence of a heterochromatic island provides an opportunity to study sequence determinants of chromosome condensation. PMID:10676819

  3. The complete sequence of a heterochromatic island from a higher eukaryote. The Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, Washington University Genome Sequencing Center, and PE Biosystems Arabidopsis Sequencing Consortium.

    PubMed

    2000-02-01

    Heterochromatin, constitutively condensed chromosomal material, is widespread among eukaryotes but incompletely characterized at the nucleotide level. We have sequenced and analyzed 2.1 megabases (Mb) of Arabidopsis thaliana chromosome 4 that includes 0.5-0.7 Mb of isolated heterochromatin that resembles the chromosomal knobs described by Barbara McClintock in maize. This isolated region has a low density of expressed genes, low levels of recombination and a low incidence of genetrap insertion. Satellite repeats were absent, but tandem arrays of long repeats and many transposons were found. Methylation of these sequences was dependent on chromatin remodeling. Clustered repeats were associated with condensed chromosomal domains elsewhere. The complete sequence of a heterochromatic island provides an opportunity to study sequence determinants of chromosome condensation.

  4. Mammalian translation elongation factor eEF1A2: X-ray structure and new features of GDP/GTP exchange mechanism in higher eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Crepin, Thibaut; Shalak, Vyacheslav F; Yaremchuk, Anna D; Vlasenko, Dmytro O; McCarthy, Andrew; Negrutskii, Boris S; Tukalo, Michail A; El'skaya, Anna V

    2014-11-10

    Eukaryotic elongation factor eEF1A transits between the GTP- and GDP-bound conformations during the ribosomal polypeptide chain elongation. eEF1A*GTP establishes a complex with the aminoacyl-tRNA in the A site of the 80S ribosome. Correct codon-anticodon recognition triggers GTP hydrolysis, with subsequent dissociation of eEF1A*GDP from the ribosome. The structures of both the 'GTP'- and 'GDP'-bound conformations of eEF1A are unknown. Thus, the eEF1A-related ribosomal mechanisms were anticipated only by analogy with the bacterial homolog EF-Tu. Here, we report the first crystal structure of the mammalian eEF1A2*GDP complex which indicates major differences in the organization of the nucleotide-binding domain and intramolecular movements of eEF1A compared to EF-Tu. Our results explain the nucleotide exchange mechanism in the mammalian eEF1A and suggest that the first step of eEF1A*GDP dissociation from the 80S ribosome is the rotation of the nucleotide-binding domain observed after GTP hydrolysis.

  5. Ancestral relationships of the major eukaryotic lineages.

    PubMed

    Sogin, M L; Morrison, H G; Hinkle, G; Silberman, J D

    1996-03-01

    Molecular systematics has revolutionized our understanding of microbial evolution. Phylogenetic frameworks relating all organisms in this biosphere can be inferred from comparisons of slowly evolving molecules such as the small and large subunit ribosomal RNAs. Unlike today's text book standard, the "Five Kingdoms" (plants, animals, fungi, protists and bacteria), molecular studies define three primary lines of descent (Eukaryotes, Eubacteria, and Archaebacteria). Within the Eukaryotes, the "higher" kingdoms (Fungi, Plantae, and Animalia) are joined by at least two novel complex evolutionary assemblages, the "Alveolates" (ciliates, dinoflagellates and apicomplexans) and the "Stramenopiles" (diatoms, oomycetes, labyrinthulids, brown algae and chrysophytes). The separation of these eukaryotic groups (described as the eukaryotic "crown") occurred approximately 10(9) years ago and was preceded by a succession of earlier diverging protist lineages, some as ancient as the separation of the prokaryotic domains. The molecular phylogenies suggest that multiple endosymbiotic events introduced plastids into discrete eukaryotic lineages.

  6. Acidocalcisomes of eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Docampo, Roberto; Huang, Guozhong

    2016-08-01

    Acidocalcisomes are organelles rich in polyphosphate and cations and acidified by proton pumps. Although they have also been described in prokaryotes they have been better characterized in unicellular and multicellular eukaryotes. Eukaryotic acidocalcisomes belong to the group of lysosome-related organelles. They have a variety of functions, from the storage of cations and phosphorus to calcium signaling, autophagy, osmoregulation, blood coagulation, and inflammation. Acidocalcisomes of several unicellular eukaryotes possess a variety of transporters, channels and pumps implying a large energetic requirement for their maintenance and suggesting other important functions waiting to be discovered. PMID:27125677

  7. The tree of eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Keeling, Patrick J; Burger, Gertraud; Durnford, Dion G; Lang, B Franz; Lee, Robert W; Pearlman, Ronald E; Roger, Andrew J; Gray, Michael W

    2005-12-01

    Recent advances in resolving the tree of eukaryotes are converging on a model composed of a few large hypothetical 'supergroups', each comprising a diversity of primarily microbial eukaryotes (protists, or protozoa and algae). The process of resolving the tree involves the synthesis of many kinds of data, including single-gene trees, multigene analyses, and other kinds of molecular and structural characters. Here, we review the recent progress in assembling the tree of eukaryotes, describing the major evidence for each supergroup, and where gaps in our knowledge remain. We also consider other factors emerging from phylogenetic analyses and comparative genomics, in particular lateral gene transfer, and whether such factors confound our understanding of the eukaryotic tree.

  8. Mechanisms of gene targeting in higher eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Tokunaga, Akinori; Anai, Hirofumi; Hanada, Katsuhiro

    2016-02-01

    Targeted genome modifications using techniques that alter the genomic information of interest have contributed to multiple studies in both basic and applied biology. Traditionally, in gene targeting, the target-site integration of a targeting vector by homologous recombination is used. However, this strategy has several technical problems. The first problem is the extremely low frequency of gene targeting, which makes obtaining recombinant clones an extremely labor intensive task. The second issue is the limited number of biomaterials to which gene targeting can be applied. Traditional gene targeting hardly occurs in most of the human adherent cell lines. However, a new approach using designer nucleases that can introduce site-specific double-strand breaks in genomic DNAs has increased the efficiency of gene targeting. This new method has also expanded the number of biomaterials to which gene targeting could be applied. Here, we summarize various strategies for target gene modification, including a comparison of traditional gene targeting with designer nucleases.

  9. Crystal structure of the eukaryotic ribosome.

    PubMed

    Ben-Shem, Adam; Jenner, Lasse; Yusupova, Gulnara; Yusupov, Marat

    2010-11-26

    Crystal structures of prokaryotic ribosomes have described in detail the universally conserved core of the translation mechanism. However, many facets of the translation process in eukaryotes are not shared with prokaryotes. The crystal structure of the yeast 80S ribosome determined at 4.15 angstrom resolution reveals the higher complexity of eukaryotic ribosomes, which are 40% larger than their bacterial counterparts. Our model shows how eukaryote-specific elements considerably expand the network of interactions within the ribosome and provides insights into eukaryote-specific features of protein synthesis. Our crystals capture the ribosome in the ratcheted state, which is essential for translocation of mRNA and transfer RNA (tRNA), and in which the small ribosomal subunit has rotated with respect to the large subunit. We describe the conformational changes in both ribosomal subunits that are involved in ratcheting and their implications in coordination between the two associated subunits and in mRNA and tRNA translocation.

  10. Organelle fission in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Osteryoung, K W

    2001-12-01

    The cellular machineries that power chloroplast and mitochondrial division in eukaryotes carry out the topologically challenging job of constricting and severing these double-membraned organelles. Consistent with their endosymbiotic origins, mitochondria in protists and chloroplasts in photosynthetic eukaryotes have evolved organelle-targeted forms of FtsZ, the prokaryotic ancestor of tubulin, as key components of their fission complexes. In fungi, animals and plants, mitochondria no longer utilize FtsZ for division, but several mitochondrial division proteins that localize to the outer membrane and intermembrane space, including two related to the filament-forming dynamins, have been identified in yeast and animals. Although the reactions that mediate organelle division are not yet understood, recent progress in uncovering the constituents of the organelle division machineries promises rapid advancement in our understanding of the biochemical mechanisms underlying the distinct but related processes of chloroplast and mitochondrial division in eukaryotes.

  11. Molecular phylogeny of eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Schlegel, M

    1994-09-01

    Comparisons of ribosomal RNAs and various protein coding genes have contributed to a new view of eukaryote phylogeny. Analyses of paralogous protein coding genes suggest that archaebacteria and eukaryotes are sistergroups. Sequence diversity of small subunit rRNAs in protists by far exceeds that of any multicellular or prokaryote taxon. Remarkably, a group of taxa that lack mitochondria first branches off in the small subunit rRNA tree. The later radiations are formed by a series of clades that were once thought to be more ancestral. Furthermore, tracing of the evolutionary origin of secondary endobiontic events is now possible with sequence comparisons.

  12. Eukaryotic Cell Panorama

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Goodsell, David S.

    2011-01-01

    Diverse biological data may be used to create illustrations of molecules in their cellular context. This report describes the scientific results that support an illustration of a eukaryotic cell, enlarged by one million times to show the distribution and arrangement of macromolecules. The panoramic cross section includes eight panels that extend…

  13. Prokaryote and eukaryote evolvability.

    PubMed

    Poole, Anthony M; Phillips, Matthew J; Penny, David

    2003-05-01

    The concept of evolvability covers a broad spectrum of, often contradictory, ideas. At one end of the spectrum it is equivalent to the statement that evolution is possible, at the other end are untestable post hoc explanations, such as the suggestion that current evolutionary theory cannot explain the evolution of evolvability. We examine similarities and differences in eukaryote and prokaryote evolvability, and look for explanations that are compatible with a wide range of observations. Differences in genome organisation between eukaryotes and prokaryotes meets this criterion. The single origin of replication in prokaryote chromosomes (versus multiple origins in eukaryotes) accounts for many differences because the time to replicate a prokaryote genome limits its size (and the accumulation of junk DNA). Both prokaryotes and eukaryotes appear to switch from genetic stability to genetic change in response to stress. We examine a range of stress responses, and discuss how these impact on evolvability, particularly in unicellular organisms versus complex multicellular ones. Evolvability is also limited by environmental interactions (including competition) and we describe a model that places limits on potential evolvability. Examples are given of its application to predator competition and limits to lateral gene transfer. We suggest that unicellular organisms evolve largely through a process of metabolic change, resulting in biochemical diversity. Multicellular organisms evolve largely through morphological changes, not through extensive changes to cellular biochemistry. PMID:12689728

  14. Operons in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Blumenthal, Thomas

    2004-11-01

    It was thought that polycistronic transcription is a characteristic of bacteria and archaea, where many of the genes are clustered in operons composed of two to more than ten genes. By contrast, the genes of eukaryotes are generally considered to be monocistronic, each with its own promoter at the 5' end and a transcription terminator at the 3' end; however, it has recently become clear that not all eukaryotic genes are transcribed monocistronically. Numerous instances of polycistronic transcription in eukaryotes, from protists to chordates, have been reported. These can be divided into two broad types. Dicistronic transcription units specify a messenger RNA (mRNA) encoding two separate genes that is transported to the cytoplasm and translated in that form. Presumably, internal ribosome entry sites (IRES), or some form of translational re-initiation following the stop codon, are responsible for allowing translation of the downstream gene. In the other type, the initial transcript is processed by 3' end cleavage and trans-splicing to create monocistronic mRNAs that are transported to the cytoplasm and translated. Like bacterial operons, eukaryotic operons often result in co-expression of functionally related proteins.

  15. Extrachromosomal elements in lower eukaryotes:

    SciTech Connect

    Wickner, R.B.; Hinnebusch, A.; Lambowitz, A.M.; Gunsalus, I.C.; Hollaender, A.

    1986-01-01

    While most genes are chromosomal, the nonchromosomal genes have played a disproportionate role in molecular biology, in part because of their easy accessibility and in part because they represent the most mobile portion of a cell's genome. Fungi, yeasts, protozoa, slime molds, algae, and other single-celled nucleated species, have recently gained dramatic popularity with the development of transformation methods for Saccharomyces, Neurospora, Schizosaccharomyces, Dictyostelium, and others of this group. The realization that Saccharomyces has oncogenes, RNA tumor viruses, intervening sequences, and all the mitotic, mitochondrial, and other structures typical of so-called ''higher'' eukaryotic organisms has confirmed the use of such organisms as model systems. Their use in biotechnology also shows great promise. The study in lower eukaryotes of mitochondria and chloroplasts has yielded many insights into similar structures in higher organisms as well as many unexpected finds, such as mechanisms of intron excision and the biology of introns, RNA catalysis, variation of the genetic code, and mechanisms of protein import across membranes.

  16. Lateral gene transfer in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Andersson, J O

    2005-06-01

    Lateral gene transfer -- the transfer of genetic material between species -- has been acknowledged as a major mechanism in prokaryotic genome evolution for some time. Recently accumulating data indicate that the process also occurs in the evolution of eukaryotic genomes. However, there are large rate variations between groups of eukaryotes; animals and fungi seem to be largely unaffected, with a few exceptions, while lateral gene transfer frequently occurs in protists with phagotrophic lifestyles, possibly with rates comparable to prokaryotic organisms. Gene transfers often facilitate the acquisition of functions encoded in prokaryotic genomes by eukaryotic organisms, which may enable them to colonize new environments. Transfers between eukaryotes also occur, mainly into larger phagotrophic eukaryotes that ingest eukaryotic cells, but also between plant lineages. These findings have implications for eukaryotic genomic research in general, and studies of the origin and phylogeny of eukaryotes in particular.

  17. Ribonuclease H: the enzymes in Eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Cerritelli, Susana M.; Crouch, Robert J.

    2009-01-01

    Summary Ribonucleases H are enzymes that cleave the RNA of RNA/DNA hybrids that form during replication and repair and which could lead to DNA instability if they were not processed. There are two main types of RNases H, and at least one of them is present in most organisms. Eukaryotic RNases H are larger and more complex than their prokaryotic counterparts. Eukaryotic RNase H1 has acquired a Hybrid Binding Domain that confers processivity and affinity for the substrate, while eukaryotic RNase H2 is composed of three different proteins: the catalytic subunit (2A), similar to the monomeric prokaryotic RNase HII, and two other subunits (2B and 2C) that have no prokaryotic counterparts and as yet unknown functions, but that are necessary for catalysis. In this review, we discuss some of the most recent findings on eukaryotic RNases H1 and H2, focusing on the structural data on complexes between human RNase H1 and RNA/DNA hybrids that had provided great detail of how the Hybrid Binding- and RNase H-domains recognize and cleave the RNA strand of the hybrid substrates. We also describe the progress made in understanding the in vivo function of eukaryotic RNases H. While prokayotes and some single-cell eukaryotes do not require RNases H for viability, in higher eukaryotes RNases H are essential. Rnaseh1 null mice arrest development around E8.5 because RNase H1 is necessary during embryogenesis for mitochondrial DNA replication. Mutations in any of the three subunits of human RNase H2 cause Aicardi-Goutiéres Syndrome (AGS), a human neurological disorder with devastating consequences. PMID:19228196

  18. Reinitiation enhances reliable transcriptional responses in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Liu, Bo; Yuan, Zhanjiang; Aihara, Kazuyuki; Chen, Luonan

    2014-08-01

    Gene transcription is a noisy process carried out by the transcription machinery recruited to the promoter. Noise reduction is a fundamental requirement for reliable transcriptional responses which in turn are crucial for signal transduction. Compared with the relatively simple transcription initiation in prokaryotes, eukaryotic transcription is more complex partially owing to its additional reinitiation mechanism. By theoretical analysis, we showed that reinitiation reduces noise in eukaryotic transcription independent of the transcription level. Besides, a higher reinitiation rate enables a stable scaffold complex an advantage in noise reduction. Finally, we showed that the coupling between scaffold formation and transcription can further reduce transcription noise independent of the transcription level. Furthermore, compared with the reinitiation mechanism, the noise reduction effect of the coupling can be of more significance in the case that the transcription level is low and the intrinsic noise dominates. Our results uncover a mechanistic route which eukaryotes may use to facilitate a more reliable response in the noisy transcription process. PMID:24850905

  19. Endosymbiotic theories for eukaryote origin.

    PubMed

    Martin, William F; Garg, Sriram; Zimorski, Verena

    2015-09-26

    For over 100 years, endosymbiotic theories have figured in thoughts about the differences between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells. More than 20 different versions of endosymbiotic theory have been presented in the literature to explain the origin of eukaryotes and their mitochondria. Very few of those models account for eukaryotic anaerobes. The role of energy and the energetic constraints that prokaryotic cell organization placed on evolutionary innovation in cell history has recently come to bear on endosymbiotic theory. Only cells that possessed mitochondria had the bioenergetic means to attain eukaryotic cell complexity, which is why there are no true intermediates in the prokaryote-to-eukaryote transition. Current versions of endosymbiotic theory have it that the host was an archaeon (an archaebacterium), not a eukaryote. Hence the evolutionary history and biology of archaea increasingly comes to bear on eukaryotic origins, more than ever before. Here, we have compiled a survey of endosymbiotic theories for the origin of eukaryotes and mitochondria, and for the origin of the eukaryotic nucleus, summarizing the essentials of each and contrasting some of their predictions to the observations. A new aspect of endosymbiosis in eukaryote evolution comes into focus from these considerations: the host for the origin of plastids was a facultative anaerobe.

  20. Endosymbiotic theories for eukaryote origin

    PubMed Central

    Martin, William F.; Garg, Sriram; Zimorski, Verena

    2015-01-01

    For over 100 years, endosymbiotic theories have figured in thoughts about the differences between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells. More than 20 different versions of endosymbiotic theory have been presented in the literature to explain the origin of eukaryotes and their mitochondria. Very few of those models account for eukaryotic anaerobes. The role of energy and the energetic constraints that prokaryotic cell organization placed on evolutionary innovation in cell history has recently come to bear on endosymbiotic theory. Only cells that possessed mitochondria had the bioenergetic means to attain eukaryotic cell complexity, which is why there are no true intermediates in the prokaryote-to-eukaryote transition. Current versions of endosymbiotic theory have it that the host was an archaeon (an archaebacterium), not a eukaryote. Hence the evolutionary history and biology of archaea increasingly comes to bear on eukaryotic origins, more than ever before. Here, we have compiled a survey of endosymbiotic theories for the origin of eukaryotes and mitochondria, and for the origin of the eukaryotic nucleus, summarizing the essentials of each and contrasting some of their predictions to the observations. A new aspect of endosymbiosis in eukaryote evolution comes into focus from these considerations: the host for the origin of plastids was a facultative anaerobe. PMID:26323761

  1. Eukaryotic picoplankton in surface oceans.

    PubMed

    Massana, Ramon

    2011-01-01

    The eukaryotic picoplankton is a heterogeneous collection of small protists 1 to 3 ?m in size populating surface oceans at abundances of 10(2) to 10(4) cells ml(-1). Pigmented cells are important primary producers that are at the base of food webs. Colorless cells are mostly bacterivores and play key roles in channeling bacteria to higher trophic levels as well as in nutrient recycling. Mixotrophy and parasitism are relevant but less investigated trophic paths. Molecular surveys of picoeukaryotes have unveiled a large phylogenetic diversity and new lineages, and it is critical to understand the ecological and evolutionary significance of this large and novel diversity. A main goal is to assess how individuals are organized in taxonomic units and how they participate in ecological processes. Picoeukaryotes are convincingly integral members of marine ecosystems in terms of cell abundance, biomass, activity, and diversity and they play crucial roles in food webs and biogeochemical cycles.

  2. The Diversity of Eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Patterson

    1999-10-01

    The discipline of evolutionary protistology has emerged in the past 30 yr. There is as yet no agreed view of how protists are interrelated or how they should be classified. The foundations of a stable taxonomic superstructure for the protists and other eukaryotes lie in cataloging the diversity of the major monophyletic lineages of these organisms. The use of common patterns of cell organization (ultrastructural identity) seems to provide us with the most robust hypotheses of such lineages. These lineages are placed in 71 groups without identifiable sister taxa. These groups are here referred to as "major building blocks." For the first time, the compositions, ultrastructural identities, synapomorphies (where available), and subgroups of the major building blocks are summarized. More than 200 further lineages without clear identities are listed. This catalog includes all known major elements of the comprehensive evolutionary tree of protists and eukaryotes. Different approaches among protistologists to issues of nomenclature, ranking, and definitions of these groups are discussed, with particular reference to two groups-the stramenopiles and the Archezoa. The concept of "extended in-group" is introduced to refer to in-groups and the most proximate sister group and to assist in identifying the hierarchical location of taxa.

  3. An Evolutionary Network of Genes Present in the Eukaryote Common Ancestor Polls Genomes on Eukaryotic and Mitochondrial Origin

    PubMed Central

    Thiergart, Thorsten; Landan, Giddy; Schenk, Marc; Dagan, Tal; Martin, William F.

    2012-01-01

    To test the predictions of competing and mutually exclusive hypotheses for the origin of eukaryotes, we identified from a sample of 27 sequenced eukaryotic and 994 sequenced prokaryotic genomes 571 genes that were present in the eukaryote common ancestor and that have homologues among eubacterial and archaebacterial genomes. Maximum-likelihood trees identified the prokaryotic genomes that most frequently contained genes branching as the sister to the eukaryotic nuclear homologues. Among the archaebacteria, euryarchaeote genomes most frequently harbored the sister to the eukaryotic nuclear gene, whereas among eubacteria, the α-proteobacteria were most frequently represented within the sister group. Only 3 genes out of 571 gave a 3-domain tree. Homologues from α-proteobacterial genomes that branched as the sister to nuclear genes were found more frequently in genomes of facultatively anaerobic members of the rhiozobiales and rhodospirilliales than in obligate intracellular ricketttsial parasites. Following α-proteobacteria, the most frequent eubacterial sister lineages were γ-proteobacteria, δ-proteobacteria, and firmicutes, which were also the prokaryote genomes least frequently found as monophyletic groups in our trees. Although all 22 higher prokaryotic taxa sampled (crenarchaeotes, γ-proteobacteria, spirochaetes, chlamydias, etc.) harbor genes that branch as the sister to homologues present in the eukaryotic common ancestor, that is not evidence of 22 different prokaryotic cells participating at eukaryote origins because prokaryotic “lineages” have laterally acquired genes for more than 1.5 billion years since eukaryote origins. The data underscore the archaebacterial (host) nature of the eukaryotic informational genes and the eubacterial (mitochondrial) nature of eukaryotic energy metabolism. The network linking genes of the eukaryote ancestor to contemporary homologues distributed across prokaryotic genomes elucidates eukaryote gene origins in a

  4. Eukaryote DIRS1-like retrotransposons: an overview

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background DIRS1-like elements compose one superfamily of tyrosine recombinase-encoding retrotransposons. They have been previously reported in only a few diverse eukaryote species, describing a patchy distribution, and little is known about their origin and dynamics. Recently, we have shown that these retrotransposons are common among decapods, which calls into question the distribution of DIRS1-like retrotransposons among eukaryotes. Results To determine the distribution of DIRS1-like retrotransposons, we developed a new computational tool, ReDoSt, which allows us to identify well-conserved DIRS1-like elements. By screening 274 completely sequenced genomes, we identified more than 4000 DIRS1-like copies distributed among 30 diverse species which can be clustered into roughly 300 families. While the diversity in most species appears restricted to a low copy number, a few bursts of transposition are strongly suggested in certain species, such as Danio rerio and Saccoglossus kowalevskii. Conclusion In this study, we report 14 new species and 8 new higher taxa that were not previously known to harbor DIRS1-like retrotransposons. Now reported in 61 species, these elements appear widely distributed among eukaryotes, even if they remain undetected in streptophytes and mammals. Especially in unikonts, a broad range of taxa from Cnidaria to Sauropsida harbors such elements. Both the distribution and the similarities between the DIRS1-like element phylogeny and conventional phylogenies of the host species suggest that DIRS1-like retrotransposons emerged early during the radiation of eukaryotes. PMID:22185659

  5. Expanding the eukaryotic genetic code

    DOEpatents

    Chin, Jason W.; Cropp, T. Ashton; Anderson, J. Christopher; Schultz, Peter G.

    2010-09-14

    This invention provides compositions and methods for producing translational components that expand the number of genetically encoded amino acids in eukaryotic cells. The components include orthogonal tRNAs, orthogonal aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases, orthogonal pairs of tRNAs/synthetases and unnatural amino acids. Proteins and methods of producing proteins with unnatural amino acids in eukaryotic cells are also provided.

  6. Expanding the eukaryotic genetic code

    DOEpatents

    Chin, Jason W.; Cropp, T. Ashton; Anderson, J. Christopher; Schultz, Peter G.

    2009-10-27

    This invention provides compositions and methods for producing translational components that expand the number of genetically encoded amino acids in eukaryotic cells. The components include orthogonal tRNAs, orthogonal aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases, orthogonal pairs of tRNAs/synthetases and unnatural amino acids. Proteins and methods of producing proteins with unnatural amino acids in eukaryotic cells are also provided.

  7. Expanding the eukaryotic genetic code

    SciTech Connect

    Chin, Jason W.; Cropp, T. Ashton; Anderson, J. Christopher; Schultz, Peter G.

    2009-11-17

    This invention provides compositions and methods for producing translational components that expand the number of genetically encoded amino acids in eukaryotic cells. The components include orthogonal tRNAs, orthogonal aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases, orthogonal pairs of tRNAs/synthetases and unnatural amino acids. Proteins and methods of producing proteins with unnatural amino acids in eukaryotic cells are also provided.

  8. Expanding the eukaryotic genetic code

    SciTech Connect

    Chin, Jason W; Cropp, T. Ashton; Anderson, J. Christopher; Schultz, Peter G

    2015-02-03

    This invention provides compositions and methods for producing translational components that expand the number of genetically encoded amino acids in eukaryotic cells. The components include orthogonal tRNAs, orthogonal aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases, orthogonal pairs of tRNAs/synthetases and unnatural amino acids. Proteins and methods of producing proteins with unnatural amino acids in eukaryotic cells are also provided.

  9. Expanding the eukaryotic genetic code

    DOEpatents

    Chin, Jason W.; Cropp, T. Ashton; Anderson, J. Christopher; Schultz, Peter G.

    2012-02-14

    This invention provides compositions and methods for producing translational components that expand the number of genetically encoded amino acids in eukaryotic cells. The components include orthogonal tRNAs, orthogonal aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases, orthogonal pairs of tRNAs/synthetases and unnatural amino acids. Proteins and methods of producing proteins with unnatural amino acids in eukaryotic cells are also provided.

  10. Expanding the eukaryotic genetic code

    SciTech Connect

    Chin, Jason W.; Cropp, T. Ashton; Anderson, J. Christopher; Schultz, Peter G.

    2009-12-01

    This invention provides compositions and methods for producing translational components that expand the number of genetically encoded amino acids in eukaryotic cells. The components include orthogonal tRNAs, orthogonal aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases, orthogonal pairs of tRNAs/synthetases and unnatural amino acids. Proteins and methods of producing proteins with unnatural amino acids in eukaryotic cells are also provided.

  11. Expanding the eukaryotic genetic code

    SciTech Connect

    Chin, Jason W.; Cropp, T. Ashton; Anderson, J. Christopher; Schultz, Peter G.

    2013-01-22

    This invention provides compositions and methods for producing translational components that expand the number of genetically encoded amino acids in eukaryotic cells. The components include orthogonal tRNAs, orthogonal aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases, orthogonal pairs of tRNAs/synthetases and unnatural amino acids. Proteins and methods of producing proteins with unnatural amino acids in eukaryotic cells are also provided.

  12. Expanding the eukaryotic genetic code

    DOEpatents

    Chin, Jason W.; Cropp, T. Ashton; Anderson, J. Christopher; Schultz, Peter G.

    2012-05-08

    This invention provides compositions and methods for producing translational components that expand the number of genetically encoded amino acids in eukaryotic cells. The components include orthogonal tRNAs, orthogonal aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases, orthogonal pairs of tRNAs/synthetases and unnatural amino acids. Proteins and methods of producing proteins with unnatural amino acids in eukaryotic cells are also provided.

  13. Endosymbiosis and Eukaryotic Cell Evolution.

    PubMed

    Archibald, John M

    2015-10-01

    Understanding the evolution of eukaryotic cellular complexity is one of the grand challenges of modern biology. It has now been firmly established that mitochondria and plastids, the classical membrane-bound organelles of eukaryotic cells, evolved from bacteria by endosymbiosis. In the case of mitochondria, evidence points very clearly to an endosymbiont of α-proteobacterial ancestry. The precise nature of the host cell that partnered with this endosymbiont is, however, very much an open question. And while the host for the cyanobacterial progenitor of the plastid was undoubtedly a fully-fledged eukaryote, how - and how often - plastids moved from one eukaryote to another during algal diversification is vigorously debated. In this article I frame modern views on endosymbiotic theory in a historical context, highlighting the transformative role DNA sequencing played in solving early problems in eukaryotic cell evolution, and posing key unanswered questions emerging from the age of comparative genomics.

  14. Synchronization of Eukaryotic Flagella

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goldstein, Raymond E.

    2012-11-01

    From unicellular organisms as small as a few microns to the largest vertebrates on earth we find groups of beating flagella or cilia that exhibit striking spatio-temporal organization. This may take the form of precise frequency and phase locking as frequently found in the swimming of green algae, or beating with long-wavelength phase modulations known as metachronal waves, seen in ciliates and in our respiratory systems. The remarkable similarity in the underlying molecular structure of flagella across the whole eukaryotic world leads naturally to the hypothesis that a similarly universal mechanism might be responsible for synchronization. Although this mechanism is poorly understood, one appealing hypothesis is that it results from hydrodynamic interactions between flagella. In this talk I will describe a synthesis of recent experimental and theoretical studies of this issue that have provided the strongest evidence to date for the hydrodynamic origin of flagellar synchronization. At the unicellular level this includes studies of the beating of the two flagella of the wild type unicellular alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii in their native state and under conditions of regrowth following autotomy, and of the flagellar dominance mutant ptx1, which displays unusual anti-phase synchronization. Analysis of the related multicellular organism Volvox carteri shows it to be an ideal model organism for the study of metachronal waves. Supported by BBSRC, EPSRC, ERC, and The Wellcome Trust.

  15. How Natural a Kind Is “Eukaryote?”

    PubMed Central

    Doolittle, W. Ford

    2014-01-01

    Systematics balances uneasily between realism and nominalism, uncommitted as to whether biological taxa are discoveries or inventions. If the former, they might be taken as natural kinds. I briefly review some philosophers’ concepts of natural kinds and then argue that several of these apply well enough to “eukaryote.” Although there are some sticky issues around genomic chimerism and when eukaryotes first appeared, if we allow for degrees in the naturalness of kinds, existing eukaryotes rank highly, higher than prokaryotes. Most biologists feel this intuitively: All I attempt to do here is provide some conceptual justification. PMID:24890508

  16. The evolution of modern eukaryotic phytoplankton.

    PubMed

    Falkowski, Paul G; Katz, Miriam E; Knoll, Andrew H; Quigg, Antonietta; Raven, John A; Schofield, Oscar; Taylor, F J R

    2004-07-16

    The community structure and ecological function of contemporary marine ecosystems are critically dependent on eukaryotic phytoplankton. Although numerically inferior to cyanobacteria, these organisms are responsible for the majority of the flux of organic matter to higher trophic levels and the ocean interior. Photosynthetic eukaryotes evolved more than 1.5 billion years ago in the Proterozoic oceans. However, it was not until the Mesozoic Era (251 to 65 million years ago) that the three principal phytoplankton clades that would come to dominate the modern seas rose to ecological prominence. In contrast to their pioneering predecessors, the dinoflagellates, coccolithophores, and diatoms all contain plastids derived from an ancestral red alga by secondary symbiosis. Here we examine the geological, geochemical, and biological processes that contributed to the rise of these three, distantly related, phytoplankton groups.

  17. Origins of Eukaryotic Sexual Reproduction

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Sexual reproduction is a nearly universal feature of eukaryotic organisms. Given its ubiquity and shared core features, sex is thought to have arisen once in the last common ancestor to all eukaryotes. Using the perspectives of molecular genetics and cell biology, we consider documented and hypothetical scenarios for the instantiation and evolution of meiosis, fertilization, sex determination, uniparental inheritance of organelle genomes, and speciation. PMID:24591519

  18. Structure of a eukaryotic thiaminase I

    PubMed Central

    Kreinbring, Cheryl A.; Remillard, Stephen P.; Hubbard, Paul; Brodkin, Heather R.; Leeper, Finian J.; Hawksley, Dan; Lai, Elaine Y.; Fulton, Chandler; Petsko, Gregory A.; Ringe, Dagmar

    2014-01-01

    Thiaminases, enzymes that cleave vitamin B1, are sporadically distributed among prokaryotes and eukaryotes. Thiaminase I enzymes catalyze the elimination of the thiazole ring moiety from thiamin through substitution of the methylene group with a nitrogenous base or sulfhydryl compound. In eukaryotic organisms, these enzymes are reported to have much higher molecular weights than their bacterial counterparts. A thiaminase I of the single-celled amoeboflagellate Naegleria gruberi is the only eukaryotic thiaminase I to have been cloned, sequenced, and expressed. Here, we present the crystal structure of N. gruberi thiaminase I to a resolution of 2.8 Å, solved by isomorphous replacement and pseudo–two-wavelength multiwavelength anomalous diffraction and refined to an R factor of 0.231 (Rfree, 0.265). This structure was used to solve the structure of the enzyme in complex with 3-deazathiamin, a noncleavable thiamin analog and enzyme inhibitor (2.7 Å; R, 0.233; Rfree, 0.267). These structures define the mode of thiamin binding to this class of thiaminases and indicate the involvement of Asp272 as the catalytic base. This enzyme is able to use thiamin as a substrate and is active with amines such as aniline and veratrylamine as well as sulfhydryl compounds such as l-cysteine and β-mercaptoethanol as cosubstrates. Despite significant differences in polypeptide sequence and length, we have shown that the N. gruberi thiaminase I is homologous in structure and activity to a previously characterized bacterial thiaminase I. PMID:24351929

  19. Structure of a eukaryotic thiaminase I.

    PubMed

    Kreinbring, Cheryl A; Remillard, Stephen P; Hubbard, Paul; Brodkin, Heather R; Leeper, Finian J; Hawksley, Dan; Lai, Elaine Y; Fulton, Chandler; Petsko, Gregory A; Ringe, Dagmar

    2014-01-01

    Thiaminases, enzymes that cleave vitamin B1, are sporadically distributed among prokaryotes and eukaryotes. Thiaminase I enzymes catalyze the elimination of the thiazole ring moiety from thiamin through substitution of the methylene group with a nitrogenous base or sulfhydryl compound. In eukaryotic organisms, these enzymes are reported to have much higher molecular weights than their bacterial counterparts. A thiaminase I of the single-celled amoeboflagellate Naegleria gruberi is the only eukaryotic thiaminase I to have been cloned, sequenced, and expressed. Here, we present the crystal structure of N. gruberi thiaminase I to a resolution of 2.8 Å, solved by isomorphous replacement and pseudo-two-wavelength multiwavelength anomalous diffraction and refined to an R factor of 0.231 (Rfree, 0.265). This structure was used to solve the structure of the enzyme in complex with 3-deazathiamin, a noncleavable thiamin analog and enzyme inhibitor (2.7 Å; R, 0.233; Rfree, 0.267). These structures define the mode of thiamin binding to this class of thiaminases and indicate the involvement of Asp272 as the catalytic base. This enzyme is able to use thiamin as a substrate and is active with amines such as aniline and veratrylamine as well as sulfhydryl compounds such as l-cysteine and β-mercaptoethanol as cosubstrates. Despite significant differences in polypeptide sequence and length, we have shown that the N. gruberi thiaminase I is homologous in structure and activity to a previously characterized bacterial thiaminase I.

  20. Representing GC variation along eukaryotic chromosomes.

    PubMed

    Paces, Jan; Zíka, Radek; Paces, Václav; Pavlícek, Adam; Clay, Oliver; Bernardi, Giorgio

    2004-05-26

    Genome sequencing now permits direct visual representation, at any scale, of GC heterogeneity along the chromosomes of several higher eukaryotes. Plots can be easily obtained from the chromosomal sequences, yet sequence releases of mammalian or plant chromosomes still tend to use small scales or window sizes that obscure important large-scale compositional features. To faithfully reveal, at one glance, the compositional variation at a given scale, we have devised a simple scheme that combines line plots with color-coded shading of the regions underneath the plots. The scheme can be applied to different eukaryotic genomes to facilitate their comparison, as illustrated here for a sample of chromosomes chosen from seven selected species. As a complement to a previously published compact view of isochores in the human genome sequence, we include here an analogous map for the recently sequenced mouse genome, and discuss the contribution of repetitive DNA to the GC variation along the plots. Supplementary information, including a database of color-coded GC profiles for all recently sequenced eukaryotes and the program draw_chromosomes_gc.pl used to obtain them, are available at.

  1. The new phylogeny of eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Philippe, H; Germot, A; Moreira, D

    2000-12-01

    Molecular phylogeny has been regarded as the ultimate tool for the reconstruction of relationships among eukaryotes-especially the different protist groups-given the difficulty in interpreting morphological data from an evolutionary point of view. In fact, the use of ribosomal RNA as a marker has provided the first well resolved eukaryotic phylogenies, leading to several important evolutionary hypotheses. The most significant is that several early-emerging, amitochondriate lineages, are living relics from the early times of eukaryotic evolution. The use of alternative protein markers and the recognition of several molecular phylogeny reconstruction artefacts, however, have strongly challenged these ideas. The putative early emerging lineages have been demonstrated as late-emerging ones, artefactually misplaced to the base of the tree. The present state of eukaryotic evolution is best described by a multifurcation, in agreement with the 'big bang' hypothesis that assumes a rapid diversification of the major eukaryotic phyla. For further resolution, the analysis of genomic data through improved phylogenetic methods will be required.

  2. Drug resistance in eukaryotic microorganisms.

    PubMed

    Fairlamb, Alan H; Gow, Neil A R; Matthews, Keith R; Waters, Andrew P

    2016-06-24

    Eukaryotic microbial pathogens are major contributors to illness and death globally. Although much of their impact can be controlled by drug therapy as with prokaryotic microorganisms, the emergence of drug resistance has threatened these treatment efforts. Here, we discuss the challenges posed by eukaryotic microbial pathogens and how these are similar to, or differ from, the challenges of prokaryotic antibiotic resistance. The therapies used for several major eukaryotic microorganisms are then detailed, and the mechanisms that they have evolved to overcome these therapies are described. The rapid emergence of resistance and the restricted pipeline of new drug therapies pose considerable risks to global health and are particularly acute in the developing world. Nonetheless, we detail how the integration of new technology, biological understanding, epidemiology and evolutionary analysis can help sustain existing therapies, anticipate the emergence of resistance or optimize the deployment of new therapies.

  3. Drug resistance in eukaryotic microorganisms.

    PubMed

    Fairlamb, Alan H; Gow, Neil A R; Matthews, Keith R; Waters, Andrew P

    2016-01-01

    Eukaryotic microbial pathogens are major contributors to illness and death globally. Although much of their impact can be controlled by drug therapy as with prokaryotic microorganisms, the emergence of drug resistance has threatened these treatment efforts. Here, we discuss the challenges posed by eukaryotic microbial pathogens and how these are similar to, or differ from, the challenges of prokaryotic antibiotic resistance. The therapies used for several major eukaryotic microorganisms are then detailed, and the mechanisms that they have evolved to overcome these therapies are described. The rapid emergence of resistance and the restricted pipeline of new drug therapies pose considerable risks to global health and are particularly acute in the developing world. Nonetheless, we detail how the integration of new technology, biological understanding, epidemiology and evolutionary analysis can help sustain existing therapies, anticipate the emergence of resistance or optimize the deployment of new therapies. PMID:27572976

  4. The revised classification of eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Adl, Sina M; Simpson, Alastair G B; Lane, Christopher E; Lukeš, Julius; Bass, David; Bowser, Samuel S; Brown, Matthew W; Burki, Fabien; Dunthorn, Micah; Hampl, Vladimir; Heiss, Aaron; Hoppenrath, Mona; Lara, Enrique; Le Gall, Line; Lynn, Denis H; McManus, Hilary; Mitchell, Edward A D; Mozley-Stanridge, Sharon E; Parfrey, Laura W; Pawlowski, Jan; Rueckert, Sonja; Shadwick, Laura; Shadwick, Lora; Schoch, Conrad L; Smirnov, Alexey; Spiegel, Frederick W

    2012-09-01

    This revision of the classification of eukaryotes, which updates that of Adl et al. [J. Eukaryot. Microbiol. 52 (2005) 399], retains an emphasis on the protists and incorporates changes since 2005 that have resolved nodes and branches in phylogenetic trees. Whereas the previous revision was successful in re-introducing name stability to the classification, this revision provides a classification for lineages that were then still unresolved. The supergroups have withstood phylogenetic hypothesis testing with some modifications, but despite some progress, problematic nodes at the base of the eukaryotic tree still remain to be statistically resolved. Looking forward, subsequent transformations to our understanding of the diversity of life will be from the discovery of novel lineages in previously under-sampled areas and from environmental genomic information.

  5. Synaptic view of eukaryotic cell

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baluška, František; Mancuso, Stefano

    2014-10-01

    Synapses are stable adhesive domains between two neighbouring cells of the multicellular organisms which serve for cell-cell communication as well as for information processing and storing. The synaptic concept was developed over more than 100 years specifically for neuronal cell-cell communication. In the last ten years, this concept was adapted to embrace other cell-cell communication phenomena. Here, we focus on the recently emerged phagocytic synapse and propose new endosymbiotic synapses and "intracellular organellar synapses". All these synapses of eukaryotic cells are in a good position to explain the high capacity of eukaryotic cells for integration of diverse signalling inputs into coherent cellular behaviour.

  6. [Genetic diversity of eukaryotic picoplankton of eight lakes in Nanjing].

    PubMed

    Zhao, Bi-ying; Chen, Mei-jun; Sun, Ying; Chen, Fei-zhou; Yang, Jia-xin

    2010-05-01

    The method of terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (T-RFLP) was used to study the genetic diversity of eukaryotic picoplankton (0.2-5.0 microm) in the pelagic and littoral zones in 8 lakes with different trophic status in Nanjing. The objectives of this study were to confirm the difference of the genetic diversity of eukaryotic picoplankton among lakes and the main factors affecting this difference. T-RFLP indicated that there were various fingerprints among lakes and zones. The average terminal restriction fragments (T-RFs) in the littoral and pelagic zones were 16.4 and 15.9, respectively. The littoral zone in Lake Nan and the pelagic zone in Lake Mochou had 30 T-RFs and 27 T-RFs, respectively. The T-RFs were the least abundant (10) in the pelagic zone in Lake Baijia with relatively low trophic status. The genetic diversity of eukaryotic picoplankton was higher in the littoral zone than that in the pelagic zone except Lake Pipa and Mochou. The cluster analysis indicated that the similarities of the littoral zones and the pelagic zones were very high except Lake Baijia, Qian and Nan. The canonical correspondence analysis between the genetic diversity of eukaryotic picoplankton and environmental factors revealed the concentration of chlorophyll a had the most important impact on the eukaryotic picoplankton communities (p = 0.004). The results indicated that the genetic diversity of eukaryotic picoplankton is affected by the trophic status and has the difference in the pelagic and littoral zones.

  7. Single Cell Genomics and Transcriptomics for Unicellular Eukaryotes

    SciTech Connect

    Ciobanu, Doina; Clum, Alicia; Singh, Vasanth; Salamov, Asaf; Han, James; Copeland, Alex; Grigoriev, Igor; James, Timothy; Singer, Steven; Woyke, Tanja; Malmstrom, Rex; Cheng, Jan-Fang

    2014-03-14

    Despite their small size, unicellular eukaryotes have complex genomes with a high degree of plasticity that allow them to adapt quickly to environmental changes. Unicellular eukaryotes live with prokaryotes and higher eukaryotes, frequently in symbiotic or parasitic niches. To this day their contribution to the dynamics of the environmental communities remains to be understood. Unfortunately, the vast majority of eukaryotic microorganisms are either uncultured or unculturable, making genome sequencing impossible using traditional approaches. We have developed an approach to isolate unicellular eukaryotes of interest from environmental samples, and to sequence and analyze their genomes and transcriptomes. We have tested our methods with six species: an uncharacterized protist from cellulose-enriched compost identified as Platyophrya, a close relative of P. vorax; the fungus Metschnikowia bicuspidate, a parasite of water flea Daphnia; the mycoparasitic fungi Piptocephalis cylindrospora, a parasite of Cokeromyces and Mucor; Caulochytrium protosteloides, a parasite of Sordaria; Rozella allomycis, a parasite of the water mold Allomyces; and the microalgae Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. Here, we present the four components of our approach: pre-sequencing methods, sequence analysis for single cell genome assembly, sequence analysis of single cell transcriptomes, and genome annotation. This technology has the potential to uncover the complexity of single cell eukaryotes and their role in the environmental samples.

  8. A statistical anomaly indicates symbiotic origins of eukaryotic membranes.

    PubMed

    Bansal, Suneyna; Mittal, Aditya

    2015-04-01

    Compositional analyses of nucleic acids and proteins have shed light on possible origins of living cells. In this work, rigorous compositional analyses of ∼5000 plasma membrane lipid constituents of 273 species in the three life domains (archaea, eubacteria, and eukaryotes) revealed a remarkable statistical paradox, indicating symbiotic origins of eukaryotic cells involving eubacteria. For lipids common to plasma membranes of the three domains, the number of carbon atoms in eubacteria was found to be similar to that in eukaryotes. However, mutually exclusive subsets of same data show exactly the opposite-the number of carbon atoms in lipids of eukaryotes was higher than in eubacteria. This statistical paradox, called Simpson's paradox, was absent for lipids in archaea and for lipids not common to plasma membranes of the three domains. This indicates the presence of interaction(s) and/or association(s) in lipids forming plasma membranes of eubacteria and eukaryotes but not for those in archaea. Further inspection of membrane lipid structures affecting physicochemical properties of plasma membranes provides the first evidence (to our knowledge) on the symbiotic origins of eukaryotic cells based on the "third front" (i.e., lipids) in addition to the growing compositional data from nucleic acids and proteins.

  9. Macroevolutionary trends of atomic composition and related functional group proportion in eukaryotic and prokaryotic proteins.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yu-Juan; Yang, Chun-Lin; Hao, You-Jin; Li, Ying; Chen, Bin; Wen, Jian-Fan

    2014-01-25

    To fully explore the trends of atomic composition during the macroevolution from prokaryote to eukaryote, five atoms (oxygen, sulfur, nitrogen, carbon, hydrogen) and related functional groups in prokaryotic and eukaryotic proteins were surveyed and compared. Genome-wide analysis showed that eukaryotic proteins have more oxygen, sulfur and nitrogen atoms than prokaryotes do. Clusters of Orthologous Groups (COG) analysis revealed that oxygen, sulfur, carbon and hydrogen frequencies are higher in eukaryotic proteins than in their prokaryotic orthologs. Furthermore, functional group analysis demonstrated that eukaryotic proteins tend to have higher proportions of sulfhydryl, hydroxyl and acylamino, but lower of sulfide and carboxyl. Taken together, an apparent trend of increase was observed for oxygen and sulfur atoms in the macroevolution; the variation of oxygen and sulfur compositions and their related functional groups in macroevolution made eukaryotic proteins carry more useful functional groups. These results will be helpful for better understanding the functional significances of atomic composition evolution.

  10. Changing ideas about eukaryotic origins.

    PubMed

    Williams, Tom A; Embley, T Martin

    2015-09-26

    The origin of eukaryotic cells is one of the most fascinating challenges in biology, and has inspired decades of controversy and debate. Recent work has led to major upheavals in our understanding of eukaryotic origins and has catalysed new debates about the roles of endosymbiosis and gene flow across the tree of life. Improved methods of phylogenetic analysis support scenarios in which the host cell for the mitochondrial endosymbiont was a member of the Archaea, and new technologies for sampling the genomes of environmental prokaryotes have allowed investigators to home in on closer relatives of founding symbiotic partners. The inference and interpretation of phylogenetic trees from genomic data remains at the centre of many of these debates, and there is increasing recognition that trees built using inadequate methods can prove misleading, whether describing the relationship of eukaryotes to other cells or the root of the universal tree. New statistical approaches show promise for addressing these questions but they come with their own computational challenges. The papers in this theme issue discuss recent progress on the origin of eukaryotic cells and genomes, highlight some of the ongoing debates, and suggest possible routes to future progress.

  11. Changing ideas about eukaryotic origins

    PubMed Central

    Williams, Tom A.; Embley, T. Martin

    2015-01-01

    The origin of eukaryotic cells is one of the most fascinating challenges in biology, and has inspired decades of controversy and debate. Recent work has led to major upheavals in our understanding of eukaryotic origins and has catalysed new debates about the roles of endosymbiosis and gene flow across the tree of life. Improved methods of phylogenetic analysis support scenarios in which the host cell for the mitochondrial endosymbiont was a member of the Archaea, and new technologies for sampling the genomes of environmental prokaryotes have allowed investigators to home in on closer relatives of founding symbiotic partners. The inference and interpretation of phylogenetic trees from genomic data remains at the centre of many of these debates, and there is increasing recognition that trees built using inadequate methods can prove misleading, whether describing the relationship of eukaryotes to other cells or the root of the universal tree. New statistical approaches show promise for addressing these questions but they come with their own computational challenges. The papers in this theme issue discuss recent progress on the origin of eukaryotic cells and genomes, highlight some of the ongoing debates, and suggest possible routes to future progress. PMID:26323752

  12. Eukaryotic organisms in Proterozoic oceans.

    PubMed

    Knoll, A H; Javaux, E J; Hewitt, D; Cohen, P

    2006-06-29

    The geological record of protists begins well before the Ediacaran and Cambrian diversification of animals, but the antiquity of that history, its reliability as a chronicle of evolution and the causal inferences that can be drawn from it remain subjects of debate. Well-preserved protists are known from a relatively small number of Proterozoic formations, but taphonomic considerations suggest that they capture at least broad aspects of early eukaryotic evolution. A modest diversity of problematic, possibly stem group protists occurs in ca 1800-1300 Myr old rocks. 1300-720 Myr fossils document the divergence of major eukaryotic clades, but only with the Ediacaran-Cambrian radiation of animals did diversity increase within most clades with fossilizable members. While taxonomic placement of many Proterozoic eukaryotes may be arguable, the presence of characters used for that placement is not. Focus on character evolution permits inferences about the innovations in cell biology and development that underpin the taxonomic and morphological diversification of eukaryotic organisms.

  13. The early eukaryotic fossil record.

    PubMed

    Javaux, Emmanuelle J

    2007-01-01

    The Precambrian era records the evolution of the domain Eucarya. Although the taxonomy of fossils is often impossible to resolve beyond the level of domain, their morphology and chemistry indicate the evolution of major biological innovations. The late Archean record for eukaryotes is limited to trace amounts of biomarkers. Morphological evidence appears in late Paleoproterozoic and early Mesoproterozoic (1800-1300 Ma) rocks. The moderate diversity of preservable eukaryotic organisms includes cell walls without surface ornament (but with complex ultrastructure), with regularly distributed surface ornamentation, and with irregularly or regularly arranged processes. Collectively, these fossils suggest that eukaryotes with flexible membranes and cytoskeletons existed in mid-Proterozoic oceans. The late Mesoproterozoic-early Neoproterozoic (1300-750 Ma) is a time of diversification and evolution when direct evidence for important biological innovations occurs in the fossil record such as multicellularity, sex, photosynthesis, biomineralization, predation, and heterotrophy. Members of extant clades can be recognized and include bangiophyte red algae, xanthophyte algae, cladophorale green algae, euglyphid, lobose, and filose amoebae and possible fungi. In the late Neoproterozoic, besides more diversification of ornamented fossils, florideophyte red algae and brown algae diversify, and animals take the stage. The record of biological innovations documented by the fossils shows that eukaryotes had evolved most cytological and molecular complexities very early in the Proterozoic but environmental conditions delayed their diversification within clades until oxygen level and predation pressure increased significantly. PMID:17977455

  14. Eukaryotic organisms in Proterozoic oceans

    PubMed Central

    Knoll, A.H; Javaux, E.J; Hewitt, D; Cohen, P

    2006-01-01

    The geological record of protists begins well before the Ediacaran and Cambrian diversification of animals, but the antiquity of that history, its reliability as a chronicle of evolution and the causal inferences that can be drawn from it remain subjects of debate. Well-preserved protists are known from a relatively small number of Proterozoic formations, but taphonomic considerations suggest that they capture at least broad aspects of early eukaryotic evolution. A modest diversity of problematic, possibly stem group protists occurs in ca 1800–1300 Myr old rocks. 1300–720 Myr fossils document the divergence of major eukaryotic clades, but only with the Ediacaran–Cambrian radiation of animals did diversity increase within most clades with fossilizable members. While taxonomic placement of many Proterozoic eukaryotes may be arguable, the presence of characters used for that placement is not. Focus on character evolution permits inferences about the innovations in cell biology and development that underpin the taxonomic and morphological diversification of eukaryotic organisms. PMID:16754612

  15. Evolution: Steps on the road to eukaryotes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Embley, T. Martin; Williams, Tom A.

    2015-05-01

    A new archaeal phylum represents the closest known relatives of eukaryotes, the group encompassing all organisms that have nucleated cells. The discovery holds promise for a better understanding of eukaryotic origins. See Article p.173

  16. Mitochondrial uncoupling proteins in unicellular eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Jarmuszkiewicz, Wieslawa; Woyda-Ploszczyca, Andrzej; Antos-Krzeminska, Nina; Sluse, Francis E

    2010-01-01

    Uncoupling proteins (UCPs) are members of the mitochondrial anion carrier protein family that are present in the mitochondrial inner membrane and mediate free fatty acid (FFA)-activated, purine nucleotide (PN)-inhibited proton conductance. Since 1999, the presence of UCPs has been demonstrated in some non-photosynthesising unicellular eukaryotes, including amoeboid and parasite protists, as well as in non-fermentative yeast and filamentous fungi. In the mitochondria of these organisms, UCP activity is revealed upon FFA-induced, PN-inhibited stimulation of resting respiration and a decrease in membrane potential, which are accompanied by a decrease in membranous ubiquinone (Q) reduction level. UCPs in unicellular eukaryotes are able to divert energy from oxidative phosphorylation and thus compete for a proton electrochemical gradient with ATP synthase. Our recent work indicates that membranous Q is a metabolic sensor that might utilise its redox state to release the PN inhibition of UCP-mediated mitochondrial uncoupling under conditions of phosphorylation and resting respiration. The action of reduced Q (QH2) could allow higher or complete activation of UCP. As this regulatory feature was demonstrated for microorganism UCPs (A. castellanii UCP), plant and mammalian UCP1 analogues, and UCP1 in brown adipose tissue, the process could involve all UCPs. Here, we discuss the functional connection and physiological role of UCP and alternative oxidase, two main energy-dissipating systems in the plant-type mitochondrial respiratory chain of unicellular eukaryotes, including the control of cellular energy balance as well as preventive action against the production of reactive oxygen species.

  17. Hydrogenosomes: eukaryotic adaptations to anaerobic environments.

    PubMed

    Hackstein, J H; Akhmanova, A; Boxma, B; Harhangi, H R; Voncken, F G

    1999-11-01

    Like mitochondria, hydrogenosomes compartmentalize crucial steps of eukaryotic energy metabolism; however, this compartmentalization differs substantially between mitochondriate aerobes and hydrogenosome-containing anaerobes. Because hydrogenosomes have arisen independently in different lineages of eukaryotic microorganisms, comparative analysis of the various types of hydrogenosomes can provide insights into the functional and evolutionary aspects of compartmentalized energy metabolism in unicellular eukaryotes.

  18. The revised classification of eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Adl, Sina M.; Simpson, Alastair. G.; Lane, Christopher E.; Lukeš, Julius; Bass, David; Bowser, Samuel S.; Brown, Matt; Burki, Fabien; Dunthorn, Micah; Hampl, Vladimir; Heiss, Aaron; Hoppenrath, Mona; Lara, Enrique; leGall, Line; Lynn, Denis H.; McManus, Hilary; Mitchell, Edward A. D.; Mozley-Stanridge, Sharon E.; Parfrey, Laura Wegener; Pawlowski, Jan; Rueckert, Sonja; Shadwick, Lora; Schoch, Conrad; Smirnov, Alexey; Spiegel, Frederick W.

    2012-01-01

    This revision of the classification of eukaryotes, which updates that of Adl et al. (2005), retains an emphasis on the protists and incorporates changes since 2005 that have resolved nodes and branches in phylogenetic trees. Whereas the previous revision was successful in re-introducing name stability to the classification, this revision provides a classification for lineages that were then still unresolved. The supergroups have withstood phylogenetic hypothesis testing with some modifications, but despite some progress, problematic nodes at the base of the eukaryotic tree still remain to be statistically resolved. Looking forward, subsequent transformations to our understanding of the diversity of life will be from the discovery of novel lineages in previously under-sampled areas and from environmental genomic information. PMID:23020233

  19. Replicating Damaged DNA in Eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Chatterjee, Nimrat; Siede, Wolfram

    2013-01-01

    DNA damage is one of many possible perturbations that challenge the mechanisms that preserve genetic stability during the copying of the eukaryotic genome in S phase. This short review provides, in the first part, a general introduction to the topic and an overview of checkpoint responses. In the second part, the mechanisms of error-free tolerance in response to fork-arresting DNA damage will be discussed in some detail. PMID:24296172

  20. Replicating damaged DNA in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Chatterjee, Nimrat; Siede, Wolfram

    2013-12-01

    DNA damage is one of many possible perturbations that challenge the mechanisms that preserve genetic stability during the copying of the eukaryotic genome in S phase. This short review provides, in the first part, a general introduction to the topic and an overview of checkpoint responses. In the second part, the mechanisms of error-free tolerance in response to fork-arresting DNA damage will be discussed in some detail.

  1. Defensins: antifungal lessons from eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Silva, Patrícia M.; Gonçalves, Sónia; Santos, Nuno C.

    2014-01-01

    Over the last years, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have been the focus of intense research toward the finding of a viable alternative to current antifungal drugs. Defensins are one of the major families of AMPs and the most represented among all eukaryotic groups, providing an important first line of host defense against pathogenic microorganisms. Several of these cysteine-stabilized peptides present a relevant effect against fungi. Defensins are the AMPs with the broader distribution across all eukaryotic kingdoms, namely, Fungi, Plantae, and Animalia, and were recently shown to have an ancestor in a bacterial organism. As a part of the host defense, defensins act as an important vehicle of information between innate and adaptive immune system and have a role in immunomodulation. This multidimensionality represents a powerful host shield, hard for microorganisms to overcome using single approach resistance strategies. Pathogenic fungi resistance to conventional antimycotic drugs is becoming a major problem. Defensins, as other AMPs, have shown to be an effective alternative to the current antimycotic therapies, demonstrating potential as novel therapeutic agents or drug leads. In this review, we summarize the current knowledge on some eukaryotic defensins with antifungal action. An overview of the main targets in the fungal cell and the mechanism of action of these AMPs (namely, the selectivity for some fungal membrane components) are presented. Additionally, recent works on antifungal defensins structure, activity, and cytotoxicity are also reviewed. PMID:24688483

  2. Viruses and viruslike particles of eukaryotic algae.

    PubMed Central

    Van Etten, J L; Lane, L C; Meints, R H

    1991-01-01

    Until recently there was little interest or information on viruses and viruslike particles of eukaryotic algae. However, this situation is changing. In the past decade many large double-stranded DNA-containing viruses that infect two culturable, unicellular, eukaryotic green algae have been discovered. These viruses can be produced in large quantities, assayed by plaque formation, and analyzed by standard bacteriophage techniques. The viruses are structurally similar to animal iridoviruses, their genomes are similar to but larger (greater than 300 kbp) than that of poxviruses, and their infection process resembles that of bacteriophages. Some of the viruses have DNAs with low levels of methylated bases, whereas others have DNAs with high concentrations of 5-methylcytosine and N6-methyladenine. Virus-encoded DNA methyltransferases are associated with the methylation and are accompanied by virus-encoded DNA site-specific (restriction) endonucleases. Some of these enzymes have sequence specificities identical to those of known bacterial enzymes, and others have previously unrecognized specificities. A separate rod-shaped RNA-containing algal virus has structural and nucleotide sequence affinities to higher plant viruses. Quite recently, viruses have been associated with rapid changes in marine algal populations. In the next decade we envision the discovery of new algal viruses, clarification of their role in various ecosystems, discovery of commercially useful genes in these viruses, and exploitation of algal virus genetic elements in plant and algal biotechnology. Images PMID:1779928

  3. Changing perspectives on the origin of eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Katz, L A

    1998-12-01

    From the initial application of molecular techniques to the study of microbial organisms, three domains of life emerged, with eukaryotes and archaea as sister taxa. However, recent analyses of an expanding molecular data set reveal that the eukaryotic genome is chimeric with respect to archaea and bacteria. Moreover, there is now evidence that the primitive eukaryotic group `Archezoa' once harbored mitochondia. These discoveries have challenged the traditional stepwise model of the evolution of eukaryotes, in which the nucleus and microtubules evolve before the acquisition of mitochondria, and consequently compel a revision of existing models of the origin of eukaryotic cells. PMID:21238406

  4. Mock communities highlight the diversity of host-associated eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Wegener Parfrey, Laura

    2015-09-01

    Host-associated microbes are ubiquitous. Every multicellular eukaryote, and even many unicellular eukaryotes (protists), hosts a diverse community of microbes. High-throughput sequencing (HTS) tools have illuminated the vast diversity of host-associated microbes and shown that they have widespread influence on host biology, ecology and evolution (McFall-Ngai et al. ). Bacteria receive most of the attention, but protists are also important components of microbial communities associated with humans (Parfrey et al. ) and other hosts. As HTS tools are increasingly used to study eukaryotes, the presence of numerous and diverse host-associated eukaryotes is emerging as a common theme across ecosystems. Indeed, HTS studies demonstrate that host-associated lineages account for between 2 and 12% of overall eukaryotic sequences detected in soil, marine and freshwater data sets, with much higher relative abundances observed in some samples (Ramirez et al. ; Simon et al. ; de Vargas et al. ). Previous studies in soil detected large numbers of predominantly parasitic lineages such as Apicomplexa, but did not delve into their origin [e.g. (Ramirez et al. )]. In this issue of Molecular Ecology, Geisen et al. () use mock communities to show that many of the eukaryotic organisms detected by environmental sequencing in soils are potentially associated with animal hosts rather than free-living. By isolating the host-associated fraction of soil microbial communities, Geisen and colleagues help explain the surprisingly high diversity of parasitic eukaryotic lineages often detected in soil/terrestrial studies using high-throughput sequencing (HTS) and reinforce the ubiquity of these host-associated microbes. It is clear that we can no longer assume that organisms detected in bulk environmental sequencing are free-living, but instead need to design studies that specifically enumerate the diversity and function of host-associated eukaryotes. Doing so will allow the field to

  5. Mock communities highlight the diversity of host-associated eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Wegener Parfrey, Laura

    2015-09-01

    Host-associated microbes are ubiquitous. Every multicellular eukaryote, and even many unicellular eukaryotes (protists), hosts a diverse community of microbes. High-throughput sequencing (HTS) tools have illuminated the vast diversity of host-associated microbes and shown that they have widespread influence on host biology, ecology and evolution (McFall-Ngai et al. ). Bacteria receive most of the attention, but protists are also important components of microbial communities associated with humans (Parfrey et al. ) and other hosts. As HTS tools are increasingly used to study eukaryotes, the presence of numerous and diverse host-associated eukaryotes is emerging as a common theme across ecosystems. Indeed, HTS studies demonstrate that host-associated lineages account for between 2 and 12% of overall eukaryotic sequences detected in soil, marine and freshwater data sets, with much higher relative abundances observed in some samples (Ramirez et al. ; Simon et al. ; de Vargas et al. ). Previous studies in soil detected large numbers of predominantly parasitic lineages such as Apicomplexa, but did not delve into their origin [e.g. (Ramirez et al. )]. In this issue of Molecular Ecology, Geisen et al. () use mock communities to show that many of the eukaryotic organisms detected by environmental sequencing in soils are potentially associated with animal hosts rather than free-living. By isolating the host-associated fraction of soil microbial communities, Geisen and colleagues help explain the surprisingly high diversity of parasitic eukaryotic lineages often detected in soil/terrestrial studies using high-throughput sequencing (HTS) and reinforce the ubiquity of these host-associated microbes. It is clear that we can no longer assume that organisms detected in bulk environmental sequencing are free-living, but instead need to design studies that specifically enumerate the diversity and function of host-associated eukaryotes. Doing so will allow the field to

  6. Chromatin perturbations during the DNA damage response in higher eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Bakkenist, Christopher J; Kastan, Michael B

    2015-12-01

    The DNA damage response is a widely used term that encompasses all signaling initiated at DNA lesions and damaged replication forks as it extends to orchestrate DNA repair, cell cycle checkpoints, cell death and senescence. ATM, an apical DNA damage signaling kinase, is virtually instantaneously activated following the introduction of DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs). The MRE11-RAD50-NBS1 (MRN) complex, which has a catalytic role in DNA repair, and the KAT5 (Tip60) acetyltransferase are required for maximal ATM kinase activation in cells exposed to low doses of ionizing radiation. The sensing of DNA lesions occurs within a highly complex and heterogeneous chromatin environment. Chromatin decondensation and histone eviction at DSBs may be permissive for KAT5 binding to H3K9me3 and H3K36me3, ATM kinase acetylation and activation. Furthermore, chromatin perturbation may be a prerequisite for most DNA repair. Nucleosome disassembly during DNA repair was first reported in the 1970s by Smerdon and colleagues when nucleosome rearrangement was noted during the process of nucleotide excision repair of UV-induced DNA damage in human cells. Recently, the multi-functional protein nucleolin was identified as the relevant histone chaperone required for partial nucleosome disruption at DBSs, the recruitment of repair enzymes and for DNA repair. Notably, ATM kinase is activated by chromatin perturbations induced by a variety of treatments that do not directly cause DSBs, including treatment with histone deacetylase inhibitors. Central to the mechanisms that activate ATR, the second apical DNA damage signaling kinase, outside of a stalled and collapsed replication fork in S-phase, is chromatin decondensation and histone eviction associated with DNA end resection at DSBs. Thus, a stress that is common to both ATM and ATR kinase activation is chromatin perturbations, and we argue that chromatin perturbations are both sufficient and required for induction of the DNA damage response.

  7. Chromatin perturbations during the DNA damage response in higher eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Bakkenist, Christopher J.; Kastan, Michael B.

    2016-01-01

    The DNA damage response is a widely used term that encompasses all signaling initiated at DNA lesions and damaged replication forks as it extends to orchestrate DNA repair, cell cycle checkpoints, cell death and senescence. ATM, an apical DNA damage signaling kinase, is virtually instantaneously activated following the introduction of DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs). The MRE11-RAD50-NBS1 (MRN) complex, which has a catalytic role in DNA repair, and the KAT5 (Tip60) acetyltransferase are required for maximal ATM kinase activation in cells exposed to low doses of ionizing radiation. The sensing of DNA lesions occurs within a highly complex and heterogeneous chromatin environment. Chromatin decondensation and histone eviction at DSBs may be permissive for KAT5 binding to H3K9me3 and H3K36me3, ATM kinase acetylation and activation. Furthermore, chromatin perturbation may be a prerequisite for most DNA repair. Nucleosome disassembly during DNA repair was first reported in the 1970s by Smerdon and colleagues when nucleosome rearrangement was noted during the process of nucleotide excision repair of UV-induced DNA damage in human cells. Recently, the multi-functional protein nucleolin was identified as the relevant histone chaperone required for partial nucleosome disruption at DBSs, the recruitment of repair enzymes and for DNA repair. Notably, ATM kinase is activated by chromatin perturbations induced by a variety of treatments that do not directly cause DSBs, including treatment with histone deacetylase inhibitors. Central to the mechanisms that activate ATR, the second apical DNA damage signaling kinase, outside of a stalled and collapsed replication fork in S-phase, is chromatin decondensation and histone eviction associated with DNA end resection at DSBs. Thus, a stress that is common to both ATM and ATR kinase activation is chromatin perturbations, and we argue that chromatin perturbations are both sufficient and required for induction of the DNA damage response. PMID:26391293

  8. Signal processing in eukaryotic chemotaxis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Segota, Igor; Rachakonda, Archana; Franck, Carl

    2013-03-01

    Unlike inanimate condensed matter, living cells depend upon the detection of chemical signals for their existence. First, we experimentally determined the chemotaxis response of eukaryotic Dictyostelium cells to static folic acid gradients and show that they can respond to gradients as shallow as 0.2% across the cell body. Second, using Shannon's information theory, we showed that the information cells receive about the gradient exceeds the theoretically predicted information at the receptor-ligand binding step, resulting in the violation of the data processing inequality. Finally, we analyzed how eukaryotic cells can affect the gradient signals by secreting enzymes that degrade the signal. We analyzed this effect with a focus on a well described Dictyostelium cAMP chemotaxis system where cAMP signals are affected by an extracellular cAMP phosphodiesterase (PDE) and its inhibitor (PDI). Using a reaction-diffusion model of this set of interactions in the extracellular space, we show that cells can effectively sense much steeper chemical gradients than naively expected (up to a factor of 12). We also found that the rough estimates of experimental PDE and PDI secretion rates are close to the optimal values for gradient sensing as predicted by our model.

  9. On the expansion of ribosomal proteins and RNAs in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Parker, Michael S; Sah, Renu; Balasubramaniam, Ambikaipakan; Sallee, Floyd R; Park, Edwards A; Parker, Steven L

    2014-07-01

    While the ribosome constitution is similar in all biota, there is a considerable increase in size of both ribosomal proteins (RPs) and RNAs in eukaryotes as compared to archaea and bacteria. This is pronounced in the large (60S) ribosomal subunit (LSU). In addition to enlargement (apparently maximized already in lower eukarya), the RP changes include increases in fraction, segregation and clustering of basic residues, and decrease in hydrophobicity. The acidic fraction is lower in eukaryote as compared to prokaryote RPs. In all eukaryote groups tested, the LSU RPs have significantly higher content of basic residues and homobasic segments than the SSU RPs. The vertebrate LSU RPs have much higher sequestration of basic residues than those of bacteria, archaea and even of the lower eukarya. The basic clusters are highly aligned in the vertebrate, but less in the lower eukarya, and only within families in archaea and bacteria. Increase in the basicity of RPs, besides helping transport to the nucleus, should promote stability of the assembled ribosome as well as the association with translocons and other intracellular matrix proteins. The size and GC nucleotide bias of the expansion segments of large LSU rRNAs also culminate in the vertebrate, and should support ribosome association with the endoplasmic reticulum and other intracellular networks. However, the expansion and nucleotide bias of eukaryote LSU rRNAs do not clearly correlate with changes in ionic parameters of LSU ribosomal proteins.

  10. The relative ages of eukaryotes and akaryotes.

    PubMed

    Penny, David; Collins, Lesley J; Daly, Toni K; Cox, Simon J

    2014-12-01

    The Last Eukaryote Common Ancestor (LECA) appears to have the genetics required for meiosis, mitosis, nucleus and nuclear substructures, an exon/intron gene structure, spliceosomes, many centres of DNA replication, etc. (and including mitochondria). Most of these features are not generally explained by models for the origin of the Eukaryotic cell based on the fusion of an Archeon and a Bacterium. We find that the term 'prokaryote' is ambiguous and the non-phylogenetic term akaryote should be used in its place because we do not yet know the direction of evolution between eukaryotes and akaryotes. We use the term 'protoeukaryote' for the hypothetical stem group ancestral eukaryote that took up a bacterium as an endosymbiont that formed the mitochondrion. It is easier to make detailed models with a eukaryote to an akaryote transition, rather than vice versa. So we really are at a phylogenetic impasse in not being confident about the direction of change between eukaryotes and akaryotes.

  11. Open Questions on the Origin of Eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    López-García, Purificación; Moreira, David

    2015-11-01

    Despite recent progress, the origin of the eukaryotic cell remains enigmatic. It is now known that the last eukaryotic common ancestor was complex and that endosymbiosis played a crucial role in eukaryogenesis at least via the acquisition of the alphaproteobacterial ancestor of mitochondria. However, the nature of the mitochondrial host is controversial, although the recent discovery of an archaeal lineage phylogenetically close to eukaryotes reinforces models proposing archaea-derived hosts. We argue that, in addition to improved phylogenomic analyses with more comprehensive taxon sampling to pinpoint the closest prokaryotic relatives of eukaryotes, determining plausible mechanisms and selective forces at the origin of key eukaryotic features, such as the nucleus or the bacterial-like eukaryotic membrane system, is essential to constrain existing models.

  12. A Eukaryote without a Mitochondrial Organelle.

    PubMed

    Karnkowska, Anna; Vacek, Vojtěch; Zubáčová, Zuzana; Treitli, Sebastian C; Petrželková, Romana; Eme, Laura; Novák, Lukáš; Žárský, Vojtěch; Barlow, Lael D; Herman, Emily K; Soukal, Petr; Hroudová, Miluše; Doležal, Pavel; Stairs, Courtney W; Roger, Andrew J; Eliáš, Marek; Dacks, Joel B; Vlček, Čestmír; Hampl, Vladimír

    2016-05-23

    The presence of mitochondria and related organelles in every studied eukaryote supports the view that mitochondria are essential cellular components. Here, we report the genome sequence of a microbial eukaryote, the oxymonad Monocercomonoides sp., which revealed that this organism lacks all hallmark mitochondrial proteins. Crucially, the mitochondrial iron-sulfur cluster assembly pathway, thought to be conserved in virtually all eukaryotic cells, has been replaced by a cytosolic sulfur mobilization system (SUF) acquired by lateral gene transfer from bacteria. In the context of eukaryotic phylogeny, our data suggest that Monocercomonoides is not primitively amitochondrial but has lost the mitochondrion secondarily. This is the first example of a eukaryote lacking any form of a mitochondrion, demonstrating that this organelle is not absolutely essential for the viability of a eukaryotic cell.

  13. A Eukaryote without a Mitochondrial Organelle.

    PubMed

    Karnkowska, Anna; Vacek, Vojtěch; Zubáčová, Zuzana; Treitli, Sebastian C; Petrželková, Romana; Eme, Laura; Novák, Lukáš; Žárský, Vojtěch; Barlow, Lael D; Herman, Emily K; Soukal, Petr; Hroudová, Miluše; Doležal, Pavel; Stairs, Courtney W; Roger, Andrew J; Eliáš, Marek; Dacks, Joel B; Vlček, Čestmír; Hampl, Vladimír

    2016-05-23

    The presence of mitochondria and related organelles in every studied eukaryote supports the view that mitochondria are essential cellular components. Here, we report the genome sequence of a microbial eukaryote, the oxymonad Monocercomonoides sp., which revealed that this organism lacks all hallmark mitochondrial proteins. Crucially, the mitochondrial iron-sulfur cluster assembly pathway, thought to be conserved in virtually all eukaryotic cells, has been replaced by a cytosolic sulfur mobilization system (SUF) acquired by lateral gene transfer from bacteria. In the context of eukaryotic phylogeny, our data suggest that Monocercomonoides is not primitively amitochondrial but has lost the mitochondrion secondarily. This is the first example of a eukaryote lacking any form of a mitochondrion, demonstrating that this organelle is not absolutely essential for the viability of a eukaryotic cell. PMID:27185558

  14. Open questions on the origin of eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    López-García, Purificación; Moreira, David

    2015-01-01

    Despite recent progress, the origin of the eukaryotic cell remains enigmatic. It is now known that the last eukaryotic common ancestor was complex and that endosymbiosis played a crucial role in eukaryogenesis at least via the acquisition of the alphaproteobacterial ancestor of mitochondria. However, the nature of the mitochondrial host is controversial, although the recent discovery of an archaeal lineage phylogenetically close to eukaryotes reinforces models proposing archaea-derived hosts. We argue that, in addition to improved phylogenomic analyses with more comprehensive taxon sampling to pinpoint the closest prokaryotic relatives of eukaryotes, determining plausible mechanisms and selective forces at the origin of key eukaryotic features, such as the nucleus or the bacterial-like eukaryotic membrane system, is essential to constrain existing models. PMID:26455774

  15. Eukaryotic tRNA paradox.

    PubMed

    Mitra, Sanga; Samadder, Arpa; Das, Pijush; Das, Smarajit; Chakrabarti, Jayprokas

    2015-01-01

    tRNAs are widely believed to segregate into two classes, I and II. Computational analysis of eukaryotic tRNA entries in Genomic tRNA Database, however, leads to new, albeit paradoxical, presence of more than a thousand class-I tRNAs with uncharacteristic long variable arms (V-arms), like in class-II. Out of 62,202 tRNAs from 69 eukaryotes, as many as 1431 class-I tRNAs have these novel extended V-arms, and we refer to them as paradoxical tRNAs (pxtRNAs). A great majority of these 1431 pxtRNA genes are located in intergenic regions, about 18% embedded in introns of genes or ESTs, and just one in 3'UTR. A check on the conservations of 2D and 3D base pairs for each position of these pxtRNAs reveals a few variations, but they seem to have almost all the known features (already known identity and conserved elements of tRNA). Analyses of the A-Box and B-Box of these pxtRNA genes in eukaryotes display salient deviations from the previously annotated conserved features of the standard promoters, whereas the transcription termination signals are just canonical and non-canonical runs of thymidine, similar to the ones in standard tRNA genes. There is just one such pxtRNA(ProAGG) gene in the entire human genome, and the availability of data allows epigenetic analysis of this human pxtRNA(ProAGG) in three different cell lines, H1 hESC, K562, and NHEK, to assess the level of its expression. Histone acetylation and methylation of this lone pxtRNA(ProAGG) gene in human differ from that of the nine standard human tRNA(ProAGG) genes. The V-arm nucleotide sequences and their secondary structures in pxtRNA differ from that of class-II tRNA. Considering these differences, hypotheses of alternative splicing, non-canonical intron and gene transfer are examined to partially improve the Cove scores of these pxtRNAs and to critically question their antecedence and novelty. PMID:25692737

  16. An RNA-centered view of eukaryotic cells.

    PubMed

    Tannenbaum, Emmanuel

    2006-06-01

    Emerging evidence suggests that the introns and intergenic sequences of the genomes of higher eukaryotes (the "junk" DNA) codes for a vast, RNA-based, genetic regulatory network. It is believed that this network is responsible for the variety and complexity of terrestrial life. We conjecture that this regulatory network is more properly viewed as an RNA "community", composed of a rich and largely unexplored biochemical web of RNA interactions. Viewed as an RNA-community, we hypothesize that the RNA regulatory network of higher eukaryotes can re-wire itself, and employ various and evolvable mutational strategies in response to external pressures. Thus, we argue that much evolutionary change is due to intracellular, RNA-mediated learning processes. Successful strategies and pathways are then recorded (hard-wired) into the DNA genome via reverse transcriptase. We present evidence, which is consistent with this viewpoint, and make specific theorems, which could be used to test the utility of our framework. If essentially correct, the RNA-community view of eukaryotic cells could reconcile measured point mutation and gene duplication rates with actual rates of evolutionary change. Futhermore, the RNA-community view of eukaryotic cells suggests that agent-based modeling techniques, used in mathematical economics, game theory, and neuroscience, will likely be as useful in understanding the functioning of eukaryotic cells as the pathway-based approaches of systems biology. We conclude this paper by arguing that a sufficient amount of biological knowledge has been accumulated to initiate a systematic program of experimental and computational studies of the origins and macroevolution of terrestrial life.

  17. Absence of N-terminal acetyltransferase diversification during evolution of eukaryotic organisms.

    PubMed

    Rathore, Om Singh; Faustino, Alexandra; Prudêncio, Pedro; Van Damme, Petra; Cox, Cymon J; Martinho, Rui Gonçalo

    2016-02-10

    Protein N-terminal acetylation is an ancient and ubiquitous co-translational modification catalyzed by a highly conserved family of N-terminal acetyltransferases (NATs). Prokaryotes have at least 3 NATs, whereas humans have six distinct but highly conserved NATs, suggesting an increase in regulatory complexity of this modification during eukaryotic evolution. Despite this, and against our initial expectations, we determined that NAT diversification did not occur in the eukaryotes, as all six major human NATs were most likely present in the Last Eukaryotic Common Ancestor (LECA). Furthermore, we also observed that some NATs were actually secondarily lost during evolution of major eukaryotic lineages; therefore, the increased complexity of the higher eukaryotic proteome occurred without a concomitant diversification of NAT complexes.

  18. Absence of N-terminal acetyltransferase diversification during evolution of eukaryotic organisms

    PubMed Central

    Rathore, Om Singh; Faustino, Alexandra; Prudêncio, Pedro; Van Damme, Petra; Cox, Cymon J.; Martinho, Rui Gonçalo

    2016-01-01

    Protein N-terminal acetylation is an ancient and ubiquitous co-translational modification catalyzed by a highly conserved family of N-terminal acetyltransferases (NATs). Prokaryotes have at least 3 NATs, whereas humans have six distinct but highly conserved NATs, suggesting an increase in regulatory complexity of this modification during eukaryotic evolution. Despite this, and against our initial expectations, we determined that NAT diversification did not occur in the eukaryotes, as all six major human NATs were most likely present in the Last Eukaryotic Common Ancestor (LECA). Furthermore, we also observed that some NATs were actually secondarily lost during evolution of major eukaryotic lineages; therefore, the increased complexity of the higher eukaryotic proteome occurred without a concomitant diversification of NAT complexes. PMID:26861501

  19. Biology wars: the eukaryotes strike back.

    PubMed

    Dunning Hotopp, Julie C; Estes, Anne M

    2014-12-10

    It is increasingly clear that eukaryotes have acquired bacterial DNA and function through horizontal gene transfer (HGT). In this issue of Cell Host & Microbe, Chou et al. (2014) and Metcalf et al. (2014) report multiple HGTs of bacterial tae and lysozyme genes, respectively, to diverse eukaryotic and archaeal hosts that may complement their response to bacteria.

  20. On the nature of origins of DNA replication in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Benbow, R M; Zhao, J; Larson, D D

    1992-10-01

    Chromosomal origins of DNA replication in higher eukaryotes differ significantly from those of E. coli (oriC) and the tumor virus, SV40 (ori sequence). Initiation events appear to occur throughout broad zones rather than at specific origin sequences. Analysis of four chromosomal origin regions reveals that they share common modular sequence elements. These include DNA unwinding elements, pyrimidine tracts that may serve as strong DNA polymerase-primase start sites, scaffold associated regions, transcriptional regulatory sequences, and, possibly, initiator protein binding sites and inherently destabilized regions. Based on the novel organization of chromosomal origin regions, we propose a model for initiation of DNA replication in higher eukaryotes. Unwinding of duplex DNA during initiation may be uncoupled, both temporally and spatially, from DNA synthesis, resulting in transient single-stranded intermediates that function in lieu of conventional replication forks during chromosomal DNA replication. DNA synthesis begins subsequently at multiple sites within the unwound regions rather than at specific origin sequences.

  1. Reconstructing Early Events in Eukaryotic Evolution.

    PubMed

    Roger

    1999-10-01

    Resolving the order of events that occurred during the transition from prokaryotic to eukaryotic cells remains one of the greatest problems in cell evolution. One view, the Archezoa hypothesis, proposes that the endosymbiotic origin of mitochondria occurred relatively late in eukaryotic evolution and that several mitochondrion-lacking protist groups diverged before the establishment of the organelle. Phylogenies based on small subunit ribosomal RNA and several protein-coding genes supported this proposal, placing amitochondriate protists such as diplomonads, parabasalids, and Microsporidia as the earliest diverging eukaryotic lineages. However, trees of other molecules, such as tubulins, heat shock protein 70, TATA box-binding protein, and the largest subunit of RNA polymerase II, indicate that Microsporidia are not deeply branching eukaryotes but instead are close relatives of the Fungi. Furthermore, recent discoveries of mitochondrion-derived genes in the nuclear genomes of entamoebae, Microsporidia, parabasalids, and diplomonads suggest that these organisms likely descend from mitochondrion-bearing ancestors. Although several protist lineages formally remain as candidates for Archezoa, most evidence suggests that the mitochondrial endosymbiosis took place prior to the divergence of all extant eukaryotes. In addition, discoveries of proteobacterial-like nuclear genes coding for cytoplasmic proteins indicate that the mitochondrial symbiont may have contributed more to the eukaryotic lineage than previously thought. As genome sequence data from parabasalids and diplomonads accumulate, it is becoming clear that the last common ancestor of these protist taxa and other extant eukaryotic groups already possessed many of the complex features found in most eukaryotes but lacking in prokaryotes. However, our confidence in the deeply branching position of diplomonads and parabasalids among eukaryotes is weakened by conflicting phylogenies and potential sources of artifact

  2. Evolutionary constraints of phosphorylation in eukaryotes, prokaryotes, and mitochondria.

    PubMed

    Gnad, Florian; Forner, Francesca; Zielinska, Dorota F; Birney, Ewan; Gunawardena, Jeremy; Mann, Matthias

    2010-12-01

    High accuracy mass spectrometry has proven to be a powerful technology for the large scale identification of serine/threonine/tyrosine phosphorylation in the living cell. However, despite many described phosphoproteomes, there has been no comparative study of the extent of phosphorylation and its evolutionary conservation in all domains of life. Here we analyze the results of phosphoproteomics studies performed with the same technology in a diverse set of organisms. For the most ancient organisms, the prokaryotes, only a few hundred proteins have been found to be phosphorylated. Applying the same technology to eukaryotic species resulted in the detection of thousands of phosphorylation events. Evolutionary analysis shows that prokaryotic phosphoproteins are preferentially conserved in all living organisms, whereas-site specific phosphorylation is not. Eukaryotic phosphosites are generally more conserved than their non-phosphorylated counterparts (with similar structural constraints) throughout the eukaryotic domain. Yeast and Caenorhabditis elegans are two exceptions, indicating that the majority of phosphorylation events evolved after the divergence of higher eukaryotes from yeast and reflecting the unusually large number of nematode-specific kinases. Mitochondria present an interesting intermediate link between the prokaryotic and eukaryotic domains. Applying the same technology to this organelle yielded 174 phosphorylation sites mapped to 74 proteins. Thus, the mitochondrial phosphoproteome is similarly sparse as the prokaryotic phosphoproteomes. As expected from the endosymbiotic theory, phosphorylated as well as non-phosphorylated mitochondrial proteins are significantly conserved in prokaryotes. However, mitochondrial phosphorylation sites are not conserved throughout prokaryotes, consistent with the notion that serine/threonine phosphorylation in prokaryotes occurred relatively recently in evolution. Thus, the phosphoproteome reflects major events in the

  3. Eukaryotic microorganisms in cold environments: examples from Pyrenean glaciers.

    PubMed

    García-Descalzo, Laura; García-López, Eva; Postigo, Marina; Baquero, Fernando; Alcazar, Alberto; Cid, Cristina

    2013-01-01

    Little is known about the viability of eukaryotic microorganisms preserved in icy regions. Here we report on the diversity of microbial eukaryotes in ice samples derived from four Pyrenean glaciers. The species composition of eukaryotic communities in these glaciers is unknown mostly because of the presence of a multi-year ice cap, and it is not clear whether they harbor the same populations. The recent deglaciation of these areas is allowing an easy access to glacial layers that correspond to the "Little Ice Age" although some isolated deposits are attributed to previous glacial cycles. In this study, we use molecular 18S rRNA-based approaches to characterize some of the microbial eukaryotic populations associated with Pyrenean glaciers. Firstly, we performed a chemical and microscopical characterization of ice samples. Secondly, molecular analyses revealed interesting protist genetic diversity in glaciers. In order to understand the microbial composition of the ice samples the eukaryotic communities resident in the glacial samples were examined by amplifying community DNA and constructing clone libraries with 18S rRNA primers. After removal of potential chimeric sequences and dereplication of identical sequences, phylogenetic analysis demonstrated that several different protists could be identified. Protist diversity was more phylum rich in Aneto and Monte Perdido glaciers. The dominant taxonomic groups across all samples (>1% of all sequences) were Viridiplantae and Rhizaria. Significant variations in relative abundances of protist phyla between higher and lower glaciers were observed. At the genus level, significant differences were also recorded for the dominant genera Chloromonas, Raphidonema, Heteromita, Koliella, and Bodomorpha. In addition, protist community structure showed significant differences between glaciers. The relative abundances of protist groups at different taxonomic levels correlated with the altitude and area of glaciers and with pH of ice

  4. Eukaryotic microorganisms in cold environments: examples from Pyrenean glaciers

    PubMed Central

    García-Descalzo, Laura; García-López, Eva; Postigo, Marina; Baquero, Fernando; Alcazar, Alberto; Cid, Cristina

    2013-01-01

    Little is known about the viability of eukaryotic microorganisms preserved in icy regions. Here we report on the diversity of microbial eukaryotes in ice samples derived from four Pyrenean glaciers. The species composition of eukaryotic communities in these glaciers is unknown mostly because of the presence of a multi-year ice cap, and it is not clear whether they harbor the same populations. The recent deglaciation of these areas is allowing an easy access to glacial layers that correspond to the “Little Ice Age” although some isolated deposits are attributed to previous glacial cycles. In this study, we use molecular 18S rRNA-based approaches to characterize some of the microbial eukaryotic populations associated with Pyrenean glaciers. Firstly, we performed a chemical and microscopical characterization of ice samples. Secondly, molecular analyses revealed interesting protist genetic diversity in glaciers. In order to understand the microbial composition of the ice samples the eukaryotic communities resident in the glacial samples were examined by amplifying community DNA and constructing clone libraries with 18S rRNA primers. After removal of potential chimeric sequences and dereplication of identical sequences, phylogenetic analysis demonstrated that several different protists could be identified. Protist diversity was more phylum rich in Aneto and Monte Perdido glaciers. The dominant taxonomic groups across all samples (>1% of all sequences) were Viridiplantae and Rhizaria. Significant variations in relative abundances of protist phyla between higher and lower glaciers were observed. At the genus level, significant differences were also recorded for the dominant genera Chloromonas, Raphidonema, Heteromita, Koliella, and Bodomorpha. In addition, protist community structure showed significant differences between glaciers. The relative abundances of protist groups at different taxonomic levels correlated with the altitude and area of glaciers and with pH of

  5. Eukaryotic microorganisms in cold environments: examples from Pyrenean glaciers.

    PubMed

    García-Descalzo, Laura; García-López, Eva; Postigo, Marina; Baquero, Fernando; Alcazar, Alberto; Cid, Cristina

    2013-01-01

    Little is known about the viability of eukaryotic microorganisms preserved in icy regions. Here we report on the diversity of microbial eukaryotes in ice samples derived from four Pyrenean glaciers. The species composition of eukaryotic communities in these glaciers is unknown mostly because of the presence of a multi-year ice cap, and it is not clear whether they harbor the same populations. The recent deglaciation of these areas is allowing an easy access to glacial layers that correspond to the "Little Ice Age" although some isolated deposits are attributed to previous glacial cycles. In this study, we use molecular 18S rRNA-based approaches to characterize some of the microbial eukaryotic populations associated with Pyrenean glaciers. Firstly, we performed a chemical and microscopical characterization of ice samples. Secondly, molecular analyses revealed interesting protist genetic diversity in glaciers. In order to understand the microbial composition of the ice samples the eukaryotic communities resident in the glacial samples were examined by amplifying community DNA and constructing clone libraries with 18S rRNA primers. After removal of potential chimeric sequences and dereplication of identical sequences, phylogenetic analysis demonstrated that several different protists could be identified. Protist diversity was more phylum rich in Aneto and Monte Perdido glaciers. The dominant taxonomic groups across all samples (>1% of all sequences) were Viridiplantae and Rhizaria. Significant variations in relative abundances of protist phyla between higher and lower glaciers were observed. At the genus level, significant differences were also recorded for the dominant genera Chloromonas, Raphidonema, Heteromita, Koliella, and Bodomorpha. In addition, protist community structure showed significant differences between glaciers. The relative abundances of protist groups at different taxonomic levels correlated with the altitude and area of glaciers and with pH of ice

  6. Circular RNAs in Eukaryotic Cells.

    PubMed

    Chen, Liang; Huang, Chuan; Wang, Xiaolin; Shan, Ge

    2015-10-01

    Circular RNAs (circRNAs) are now recognized as large species of transcripts in eukaryotic cells. From model organisms such as C. elegans, Drosophila, mice to human beings, thousands of circRNAs formed from back-splicing of exons have been identified. The known complexity of transcriptome has been greatly expanded upon the discovery of these RNAs. Studies about the biogenesis and physiological functions have yielded substantial knowledge for the circRNAs, and they are now more likely to be viewed as regulatory elements coded by the genome rather than unavoidable noise of gene expression. Certain human diseases may also relate to circRNAs. These circRNAs show diversifications in features such as sequence composition and cellular localization, and thus we propose that they may be divided into subtypes such as cytoplasmic circRNAs, nuclear circRNAs, and exon-intron circRNAs (EIciRNAs). Here we summarize and discuss knowns and unknowns for these RNAs, and we need to keep in mind that the whole field is still at the beginning of exciting explorations.

  7. Redox compartmentalization in eukaryotic cells

    PubMed Central

    Go, Young-Mi; Jones, Dean P.

    2008-01-01

    Diverse functions of eukaryotic cells are optimized by organization of compatible chemistries into distinct compartments defined by the structures of lipid-containing membranes, multiprotein complexes and oligomeric structures of saccharides and nucleic acids. This structural and chemical organization is coordinated, in part, through cysteine residues of proteins which undergo reversible oxidation-reduction and serve as chemical/structural transducing elements. The central thiol/disulfide redox couples, thioredoxin-1, thioredoxin-2, GSH/GSSG and cysteine/cystine (Cys/CySS), are not in equilibrium with each other and are maintained at distinct, non-equilibrium potentials in mitochondria, nuclei, the secretory pathway and the extracellular space. Mitochondria contain the most reducing compartment, have the highest rates of electron transfer and are highly sensitive to oxidation. Nuclei also have more reduced redox potentials but are relatively resistant to oxidation. The secretory pathway contains oxidative systems which introduce disulfides into proteins for export. The cytoplasm contains few metabolic oxidases and this maintains an environment for redox signaling dependent upon NADPH oxidases and NO synthases. Extracellular compartments are maintained at stable oxidizing potentials. Controlled changes in cytoplasmic GSH/GSSG redox potential are associated with functional state, varying with proliferation, differentiation and apoptosis. Variation in extracellular Cys/CySS redox potential is also associated with proliferation, cell adhesion and apoptosis. Thus, cellular redox biology is inseparable from redox compartmentalization. Further elucidation of the redox control networks within compartments will improve the mechanistic understanding of cell functions and their disruption in disease. PMID:18267127

  8. A lamin in lower eukaryotes?

    PubMed Central

    Batsios, Petros; Peter, Tatjana; Baumann, Otto; Stick, Reimer; Meyer, Irene; Gräf, Ralph

    2012-01-01

    Lamins are the major components of the nuclear lamina and serve not only as a mechanical support, but are also involved in chromatin organization, epigenetic regulation, transcription and mitotic events. Despite these universal tasks, lamins have so far been found only in metazoans. Yet, recently we have identified Dictyostelium NE81 as the first lamin-like protein in a lower eukaryote. Based on the current knowledge, we draw a model for nuclear envelope organization in Dictyostelium in this Extra View and we review the experimental data that justified this classification. Furthermore we provide unpublished data underscoring the requirement of posttranslational CaaX-box processing for proper protein localization at the nuclear envelope. Sequence comparison of NE81 sequences from four Dictyostelia with bona fide lamins illustrates the evolutional relationship between these proteins. Under certain conditions these usually unicellular social amoebae congregate to form a multicellular body. We propose that the evolution of the lamin-like NE81 went along with the invention of multicellularity. PMID:22572958

  9. Mechanochemical coupling in eukaryotic flagella.

    PubMed

    Omoto, C K

    1989-03-21

    Quantitative analyses of ATP hydrolysis coupled to movement of eukaryotic flagella is important for understanding the relationship between ATP hydrolysis and movement. The difference in ATPase activity between intact motile axonemes (that is the cytoskeletal core of flagella) and homogenized or immotile axonemes has been assumed to be coupled to movement. However, recent findings on rates of steps in the dynein ATPase cycle and the effect of interaction with microtubules on those steps call for reassessment of movement-coupled ATPase. From these studies, it is clear that dynein ATPase activity is not as tightly coupled to interaction with microtubules as myosin ATPase activity is coupled to interaction with actin. The method by which axonemal movement is inhibited will critically affect the interpretation of difference in ATPase activity. If the homogenization or similar methods uncouple dynein, the difference in ATPase activity is not a useful measurement. Greater understanding of the relationship between dynein kinetics and axonemal movement may be obtained by use of conditions and substrates with known effects at specific steps in the dynein mechanochemical cycle and quantitating their effects on movement.

  10. Regulation of Eukaryotic Flagellar Motility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mitchell, David R.

    2005-03-01

    The central apparatus is essential for normal eukaryotic flagellar bend propagation as evidenced by the paralysis associated with mutations that prevent central pair (CP) assembly. Interactions between doublet-associated radial spokes and CP projections are thought to modulate spoke-regulated protein kinases and phosphatases on outer doublets, and these enzymes in turn modulate dynein activity. To better understand CP control mechanisms, we determined the three-dimensional structure of the Chlamydomonas reinhardtii CP complex and analyzed CP orientation during formation and propagation of flagellar bending waves. We show that a single CP microtubule, C1, is near the outermost doublet in curved regions of the flagellum, and this orientation is maintained by twists between successive principal and reverse bends. The Chlamydomonas CP is inherently twisted; twists are not induced by bend formation, and do not depend on forces or signals transmitted through spoke-central pair interactions. We hypothesize that CP orientation passively responds to bend formation, and that bend propagation drives rotation of the CP and maintains a constant CP orientation in bends, which in turn permits signal transduction between specific CP projections and specific doublet-associated dyneins through radial spokes. The central pair kinesin, Klp1, although essential for normal motility, is therefore not the motor that drives CP rotation. The CP also acts as a scaffold for enzymes that maintain normal intraflagellar ATP concentration.

  11. The eukaryotic fossil record in deep time

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Butterfield, N.

    2011-12-01

    Eukaryotic organisms are defining constituents of the Phanerozoic biosphere, but they also extend well back into the Proterozoic record, primarily in the form of microscopic body fossils. Criteria for identifying pre-Ediacaran eukaryotes include large cell size, morphologically complex cell walls and/or the recognition of diagnostically eukaryotic cell division patterns. The oldest unambiguous eukaryote currently on record is an acanthomorphic acritarch (Tappania) from the Palaeoproterozoic Semri Group of central India. Older candidate eukaryotes are difficult to distinguish from giant bacteria, prokaryotic colonies or diagenetic artefacts. In younger Meso- and Neoproterozoic strata, the challenge is to recognize particular grades and clades of eukaryotes, and to document their macro-evolutionary expression. Distinctive unicellular forms include mid-Neoproterozoic testate amoebae and phosphate biomineralizing 'scale-microfossils' comparable to an extant green alga. There is also a significant record of seaweeds, possible fungi and problematica from this interval, documenting multiple independent experiments in eukaryotic multicellularity. Taxonomically resolved forms include a bangiacean red alga and probable vaucheriacean chromalveolate algae from the late Mesoproterozoic, and populations of hydrodictyacean and siphonocladalean green algae of mid Neoproterozoic age. Despite this phylogenetic breadth, however, or arguments from molecular clocks, there is no convincing evidence for pre-Ediacaran metazoans or metaphytes. The conspicuously incomplete nature of the Proterozoic record makes it difficult to resolve larger-scale ecological and evolutionary patterns. Even so, both body fossils and biomarker data point to a pre-Ediacaran biosphere dominated overwhelming by prokaryotes. Contemporaneous eukaryotes appear to be limited to conspicuously shallow water environments, and exhibit fundamentally lower levels of morphological diversity and evolutionary turnover than

  12. Endogenous Synthesis of Coenzyme Q in Eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Tran, UyenPhuong C.; Clarke, Catherine F.

    2007-01-01

    Coenzyme Q (Q) functions in the mitochondrial respiratory chain and serves as a lipophilic antioxidant. There is increasing interest in the use of Q as a nutritional supplement. Although the physiological significance of Q is extensively investigated in eukaryotes, ranging from yeast to human, the eukaryotic Q biosynthesis pathway is best characterized in the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. At least ten genes (COQ1-COQ10) have been shown to be required for Q biosynthesis and function in respiration. This review highlights recent knowledge about the endogenous synthesis of Q in eukaryotes, with emphasis on S. cerevisiae as a model system. PMID:17482885

  13. From archaeon to eukaryote: the evolutionary dark ages of the eukaryotic cell.

    PubMed

    Martijn, Joran; Ettema, Thijs J G

    2013-02-01

    The evolutionary origin of the eukaryotic cell represents an enigmatic, yet largely incomplete, puzzle. Several mutually incompatible scenarios have been proposed to explain how the eukaryotic domain of life could have emerged. To date, convincing evidence for these scenarios in the form of intermediate stages of the proposed eukaryogenesis trajectories is lacking, presenting the emergence of the complex features of the eukaryotic cell as an evolutionary deus ex machina. However, recent advances in the field of phylogenomics have started to lend support for a model that places a cellular fusion event at the basis of the origin of eukaryotes (symbiogenesis), involving the merger of an as yet unknown archaeal lineage that most probably belongs to the recently proposed 'TACK superphylum' (comprising Thaumarchaeota, Aigarchaeota, Crenarchaeota and Korarchaeota) with an alphaproteobacterium (the protomitochondrion). Interestingly, an increasing number of so-called ESPs (eukaryotic signature proteins) is being discovered in recently sequenced archaeal genomes, indicating that the archaeal ancestor of the eukaryotic cell might have been more eukaryotic in nature than presumed previously, and might, for example, have comprised primitive phagocytotic capabilities. In the present paper, we review the evolutionary transition from archaeon to eukaryote, and propose a new model for the emergence of the eukaryotic cell, the 'PhAT (phagocytosing archaeon theory)', which explains the emergence of the cellular and genomic features of eukaryotes in the light of a transiently complex phagocytosing archaeon.

  14. Prokaryotic and eukaryotic unicellular chronomics

    PubMed Central

    Halberg, F.; Cornélissen, G.; Faraone, P.; Poeggeler, B.; Hardeland, R.; Katinas, G.; Schwartzkopff, O.; Otsuka, K.; Bakken, E. E.

    2008-01-01

    An impeccable time series, published in 1930, consisting of hourly observations on colony advance in a fluid culture of E. coli, was analyzed by a periodogram and power spectrum in 1961. While the original senior author had emphasized specifically periodicity with no estimate of period length, he welcomed further analyses. After consulting his technician, he knew of no environmental periodicity related to human schedules other than an hourly photography. A periodogram analysis in 1961 showed a 20.75-h period. It was emphasized that “… the circadian period disclosed is not of exactly 24-h length.” Confirmations notwithstanding, a committee ruled out microbial circadian rhythms based on grounds that could have led to a different conclusion, namely first, the inability of some committee members to see (presumably by eyeballing) the rhythms in their own data, and second, what hardly follows, that there were “too many analyses” in the published papers. Our point in dealing with microbes and humans is that analyses are indispensable for quantification and for discovering a biologically novel spectrum of cyclicities, matching physical ones. The scope of circadian organization estimated in 1961 has become broader, including about 7-day, about half-yearly, about-yearly and ex-yearly and decadal periodisms, among others. Microbial circadians have become a field of their own with eyeballing, yet time-microscopy can quantify characteristics with their uncertainties and can assess broad chronomes (time structures) with features beyond circadians. As yet only suggestive differences between eukaryotes and prokaryotes further broaden the perspective and may lead to life’s sites of origin and to new temporal aspects of life’ s development as a chronomic tree by eventual rhythm dating in ontogeny and phylogeny. PMID:16275493

  15. [Molecular karyotyping of eukaryotic microorganisms].

    PubMed

    Nasonova, E S

    2012-01-01

    In many fungi and protists small size and weak morphological differentiation of chromosomes embarrass the study of karyotypes using microscopical tools. Molecular karyotyping based on the fractionation of intact chromosomal DNAs by pulsed field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) provides an alternative approach to the analysis of chromosomal sets in such organisms. To assign the bands observed in PFGE gel to the individual chromosomes the following methods of chromosome identification are applied: densitometric analysis of the bands; Southern hybridization with chromosome- and telomere-specific probes, which often is combined with comparative karyotyping of a series of strains with pronounced size polymorphism of chromosomes; comparison of the patterns of restriction fragments of chromosomal DNAs fractioned by KARD 2-D PFGE; comparison with the strains with well-studied interchromosomal rearrangements. Besides estimation of the number and the size of chromosomes, molecular karyotyping allows assessment of haploid genome size and ploidy level, study of genome dynamics, identification of chromosomal rearrangements and associated chromosomal polymorphism. The analysis of karyotype and dynamics of the genomes is important for the study of intra- and interspecial variability, investigation of the chromosome evolution in closely related species and elaboration of the models of speciation. The comparison of molecular karyotypes among isolates of different origin is of great practical importance for clinical diagnostics and for agricultural microbiology. In this review we discuss: 1) the methods of karyotyping and their application to the analysis of chromosomal sets in eukaryotic microorganisms; 2) the specificity of the methods used for extraction and fractionation of intact chromosomal DNAs; 3) the reasons for difficulties in interpretation of molecular karyotypes and the ways of their overcoming; 4) fields of application of molecular karyotyping; 5) the definition of

  16. Eukaryotes dominate new production in the Sargasso Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fawcett, S. E.; Lomas, M. W.; Ward, B. B.; Casey, J. R.; Sigman, D. M.

    2010-12-01

    The vast subtropical ocean gyres are considered unproductive “deserts” due to the extremely low concentrations of essential nutrients in their sunlit surface waters. Because of intense upper ocean stratification, phytoplankton growth in the subtropical gyres is limited by the slow supply of nitrate from below, and is assumed to be supported predominantly by “regenerated” nitrogen (N): ammonium and other reduced N sources recycled in surface waters. The phytoplankton assemblage of the subtropical Sargasso Sea is dominated by the prokaryotic cyanobacteria, Prochlorococcus and Synechococcus, which occur in very high cell numbers compared to the rarer, and usually larger, eukaryotic algae. Coupling flow cytometry and a new high-sensitivity method for N isotope analysis, we measure the 15N/14N of major phytoplankton taxa and other biologically distinct particle populations collected from the surface waters of the Sargasso Sea during the stratified summer period. We find that the cyanobacteria and eukaryotic phytoplankton show distinct N isotope signatures, indicating that they utilize different sources of N for growth. Prochlorococcus and Synechococcus have a uniformly low 15N/14N, consistent with the expectation that these phytoplankton rely on regenerated N. However, the 15N/14N of eukaryotic phytoplankton is higher and more variable, with a mean 15N/14N comparable to the new nitrate supply from below, indicating that eukaryotes dominate the consumption of this nitrate and rely on it for more than half of their N requirement. Using our measured 15N/14N values for the various sorted autotrophic populations, we calculate eukaryote-specific summer f-ratios of 0.6-0.67 and total community summer f-ratios of 0.15-0.23. These values are higher than those based on comparison of primary production and sediment-trap derived organic carbon (C) export, and agree well with annual f-ratio estimates implied by geochemical tracers. The high 15N/14N of eukaryotic biomass can

  17. Biosynthesis of coenzyme Q in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Kawamukai, Makoto

    2015-01-01

    Coenzyme Q (CoQ) is a component of the electron transport chain that participates in aerobic cellular respiration to produce ATP. In addition, CoQ acts as an electron acceptor in several enzymatic reactions involving oxidation-reduction. Biosynthesis of CoQ has been investigated mainly in Escherichia coli and Saccharomyces cerevisiae, and the findings have been extended to various higher organisms, including plants and humans. Analyses in yeast have contributed greatly to current understanding of human diseases related to CoQ biosynthesis. To date, human genetic disorders related to mutations in eight COQ biosynthetic genes have been reported. In addition, the crystal structures of a number of proteins involved in CoQ synthesis have been solved, including those of IspB, UbiA, UbiD, UbiX, UbiI, Alr8543 (Coq4 homolog), Coq5, ADCK3, and COQ9. Over the last decade, knowledge of CoQ biosynthesis has accumulated, and striking advances in related human genetic disorders and the crystal structure of proteins required for CoQ synthesis have been made. This review focuses on the biosynthesis of CoQ in eukaryotes, with some comparisons to the process in prokaryotes.

  18. The Eukaryotic Replisome Goes Under the Microscope.

    PubMed

    O'Donnell, Mike; Li, Huilin

    2016-03-21

    The machinery at the eukaryotic replication fork has seen many new structural advances using electron microscopy and crystallography. Recent structures of eukaryotic replisome components include the Mcm2-7 complex, the CMG helicase, DNA polymerases, a Ctf4 trimer hub and the first look at a core replisome of 20 different proteins containing the helicase, primase, leading polymerase and a lagging strand polymerase. The eukaryotic core replisome shows an unanticipated architecture, with one polymerase sitting above the helicase and the other below. Additionally, structures of Mcm2 bound to an H3/H4 tetramer suggest a direct role of the replisome in handling nucleosomes, which are important to DNA organization and gene regulation. This review provides a summary of some of the many recent advances in the structure of the eukaryotic replisome.

  19. Eukaryotic diversity in historical soil samples.

    PubMed

    Moon-van der Staay, Seung Yeo; Tzeneva, Vesela A; van der Staay, Georg W M; de Vos, Willem M; Smidt, Hauke; Hackstein, Johannes H P

    2006-09-01

    The eukaryotic biodiversity in historical air-dried samples of Dutch agricultural soil has been assessed by random sequencing of an 18S rRNA gene library and by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis. Representatives of nearly all taxa of eukaryotic soil microbes could be identified, demonstrating that it is possible to study eukaryotic microbiota in samples from soil archives that have been stored for more than 30 years at room temperature. In a pilot study, 41 sequences were retrieved that could be assigned to fungi and a variety of aerobic and anaerobic protists such as cercozoans, ciliates, xanthophytes (stramenopiles), heteroloboseans, and amoebozoans. A PCR-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis analysis of samples collected between 1950 and 1975 revealed significant changes in the composition of the eukaryotic microbiota.

  20. Paleobiological Perspectives on Early Eukaryotic Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Knoll, Andrew H.

    2014-01-01

    Eukaryotic organisms radiated in Proterozoic oceans with oxygenated surface waters, but, commonly, anoxia at depth. Exceptionally preserved fossils of red algae favor crown group emergence more than 1200 million years ago, but older (up to 1600–1800 million years) microfossils could record stem group eukaryotes. Major eukaryotic diversification ∼800 million years ago is documented by the increase in the taxonomic richness of complex, organic-walled microfossils, including simple coenocytic and multicellular forms, as well as widespread tests comparable to those of extant testate amoebae and simple foraminiferans and diverse scales comparable to organic and siliceous scales formed today by protists in several clades. Mid-Neoproterozoic establishment or expansion of eukaryophagy provides a possible mechanism for accelerating eukaryotic diversification long after the origin of the domain. Protists continued to diversify along with animals in the more pervasively oxygenated oceans of the Phanerozoic Eon. PMID:24384569

  1. The Eukaryotic Replisome Goes Under the Microscope

    PubMed Central

    O’Donnell, Mike; Li, Huilin

    2016-01-01

    The machinery at the eukaryotic replication fork has seen many new structural advances using electron microscopy and crystallography. Recent structures of eukaryotic replisome components include the Mcm2-7 complex, the CMG helicase, DNA polymerases, a Ctf4 trimer hub and the first look at a core replisome of 20 different proteins containing the helicase, primase, leading polymerase and a lagging strand polymerase. The eukaryotic core replisome shows an unanticipated architecture, with one polymerase sitting above the helicase and the other below. Additionally, structures of Mcm2 bound to an H3/H4 tetramer suggest a direct role of the replisome in handling nucleosomes, which are important to DNA organization and gene regulation. This review provides a summary of some of the many recent advances in the structure of the eukaryotic replisome. PMID:27003891

  2. Paleobiological perspectives on early eukaryotic evolution.

    PubMed

    Knoll, Andrew H

    2014-01-01

    Eukaryotic organisms radiated in Proterozoic oceans with oxygenated surface waters, but, commonly, anoxia at depth. Exceptionally preserved fossils of red algae favor crown group emergence more than 1200 million years ago, but older (up to 1600-1800 million years) microfossils could record stem group eukaryotes. Major eukaryotic diversification ~800 million years ago is documented by the increase in the taxonomic richness of complex, organic-walled microfossils, including simple coenocytic and multicellular forms, as well as widespread tests comparable to those of extant testate amoebae and simple foraminiferans and diverse scales comparable to organic and siliceous scales formed today by protists in several clades. Mid-Neoproterozoic establishment or expansion of eukaryophagy provides a possible mechanism for accelerating eukaryotic diversification long after the origin of the domain. Protists continued to diversify along with animals in the more pervasively oxygenated oceans of the Phanerozoic Eon.

  3. Metabolic Constraints on the Eukaryotic Transition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wallace, Rodrick

    2009-04-01

    Mutualism, obligate mutualism, symbiosis, and the eukaryotic ‘fusion’ of Serial Endosymbiosis Theory represent progressively more rapid and less distorted real-time communication between biological structures instantiating information sources. Such progression in accurate information transmission requires, in turn, progressively greater channel capacity that, through the homology between information source uncertainty and free energy density, requires ever more energetic metabolism. The eukaryotic transition, according to this model, may have been entrained by an ecosystem resilience shift from anaerobic to aerobic metabolism.

  4. Transfer of DNA from Bacteria to Eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Lacroix, Benoît; Citovsky, Vitaly

    2016-01-01

    Historically, the members of the Agrobacterium genus have been considered the only bacterial species naturally able to transfer and integrate DNA into the genomes of their eukaryotic hosts. Yet, increasing evidence suggests that this ability to genetically transform eukaryotic host cells might be more widespread in the bacterial world. Indeed, analyses of accumulating genomic data reveal cases of horizontal gene transfer from bacteria to eukaryotes and suggest that it represents a significant force in adaptive evolution of eukaryotic species. Specifically, recent reports indicate that bacteria other than Agrobacterium, such as Bartonella henselae (a zoonotic pathogen), Rhizobium etli (a plant-symbiotic bacterium related to Agrobacterium), or even Escherichia coli, have the ability to genetically transform their host cells under laboratory conditions. This DNA transfer relies on type IV secretion systems (T4SSs), the molecular machines that transport macromolecules during conjugative plasmid transfer and also during transport of proteins and/or DNA to the eukaryotic recipient cells. In this review article, we explore the extent of possible transfer of genetic information from bacteria to eukaryotic cells as well as the evolutionary implications and potential applications of this transfer. PMID:27406565

  5. Transfer of DNA from Bacteria to Eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Historically, the members of the Agrobacterium genus have been considered the only bacterial species naturally able to transfer and integrate DNA into the genomes of their eukaryotic hosts. Yet, increasing evidence suggests that this ability to genetically transform eukaryotic host cells might be more widespread in the bacterial world. Indeed, analyses of accumulating genomic data reveal cases of horizontal gene transfer from bacteria to eukaryotes and suggest that it represents a significant force in adaptive evolution of eukaryotic species. Specifically, recent reports indicate that bacteria other than Agrobacterium, such as Bartonella henselae (a zoonotic pathogen), Rhizobium etli (a plant-symbiotic bacterium related to Agrobacterium), or even Escherichia coli, have the ability to genetically transform their host cells under laboratory conditions. This DNA transfer relies on type IV secretion systems (T4SSs), the molecular machines that transport macromolecules during conjugative plasmid transfer and also during transport of proteins and/or DNA to the eukaryotic recipient cells. In this review article, we explore the extent of possible transfer of genetic information from bacteria to eukaryotic cells as well as the evolutionary implications and potential applications of this transfer. PMID:27406565

  6. Repetitive DNA in eukaryotic genomes.

    PubMed

    Biscotti, Maria Assunta; Olmo, Ettore; Heslop-Harrison, J S Pat

    2015-09-01

    Repetitive DNA--sequence motifs repeated hundreds or thousands of times in the genome--makes up the major proportion of all the nuclear DNA in most eukaryotic genomes. However, the significance of repetitive DNA in the genome is not completely understood, and it has been considered to have both structural and functional roles, or perhaps even no essential role. High-throughput DNA sequencing reveals huge numbers of repetitive sequences. Most bioinformatic studies focus on low-copy DNA including genes, and hence, the analyses collapse repeats in assemblies presenting only one or a few copies, often masking out and ignoring them in both DNA and RNA read data. Chromosomal studies are proving vital to examine the distribution and evolution of sequences because of the challenges of analysis of sequence data. Many questions are open about the origin, evolutionary mode and functions that repetitive sequences might have in the genome. Some, the satellite DNAs, are present in long arrays of similar motifs at a small number of sites, while others, particularly the transposable elements (DNA transposons and retrotranposons), are dispersed over regions of the genome; in both cases, sequence motifs may be located at relatively specific chromosome domains such as centromeres or subtelomeric regions. Here, we overview a range of works involving detailed characterization of the nature of all types of repetitive sequences, in particular their organization, abundance, chromosome localization, variation in sequence within and between chromosomes, and, importantly, the investigation of their transcription or expression activity. Comparison of the nature and locations of sequences between more, and less, related species is providing extensive information about their evolution and amplification. Some repetitive sequences are extremely well conserved between species, while others are among the most variable, defining differences between even closely relative species. These data suggest

  7. The phagotrophic origin of eukaryotes and phylogenetic classification of Protozoa.

    PubMed

    Cavalier-Smith, T

    2002-03-01

    ancestrally biciliate clade, named 'bikonts'. The apparently conflicting rRNA and protein trees can be reconciled with each other and this ultrastructural interpretation if long-branch distortions, some mechanistically explicable, are allowed for. Bikonts comprise two groups: corticoflagellates, with a younger anterior cilium, no centrosomal cone and ancestrally a semi-rigid cell cortex with a microtubular band on either side of the posterior mature centriole; and Rhizaria [a new infrakingdom comprising Cercozoa (now including Ascetosporea classis nov.), Retaria phylum nov., Heliozoa and Apusozoa phylum nov.], having a centrosomal cone or radiating microtubules and two microtubular roots and a soft surface, frequently with reticulopodia. Corticoflagellates comprise photokaryotes (Plantae and chromalveolates, both ancestrally with cortical alveoli) and Excavata (a new protozoan infrakingdom comprising Loukozoa, Discicristata and Archezoa, ancestrally with three microtubular roots). All basal eukaryotic radiations were of mitochondrial aerobes; hydrogenosomes evolved polyphyletically from mitochondria long afterwards, the persistence of their double envelope long after their genomes disappeared being a striking instance of membrane heredity. I discuss the relationship between the 13 protozoan phyla recognized here and revise higher protozoan classification by updating as subkingdoms Lankester's 1878 division of Protozoa into Corticata (Excavata, Alveolata; with prominent cortical microtubules and ancestrally localized cytostome--the Parabasalia probably secondarily internalized the cytoskeleton) and Gymnomyxa [infrakingdoms Sarcomastigota (Choanozoa, Amoebozoa) and Rhizaria; both ancestrally with a non-cortical cytoskeleton of radiating singlet microtubules and a relatively soft cell surface with diffused feeding]. As the eukaryote root almost certainly lies within Gymnomyxa, probably among the Sarcomastigota, Corticata are derived. Following the single symbiogenetic origin of

  8. The phagotrophic origin of eukaryotes and phylogenetic classification of Protozoa.

    PubMed

    Cavalier-Smith, T

    2002-03-01

    ancestrally biciliate clade, named 'bikonts'. The apparently conflicting rRNA and protein trees can be reconciled with each other and this ultrastructural interpretation if long-branch distortions, some mechanistically explicable, are allowed for. Bikonts comprise two groups: corticoflagellates, with a younger anterior cilium, no centrosomal cone and ancestrally a semi-rigid cell cortex with a microtubular band on either side of the posterior mature centriole; and Rhizaria [a new infrakingdom comprising Cercozoa (now including Ascetosporea classis nov.), Retaria phylum nov., Heliozoa and Apusozoa phylum nov.], having a centrosomal cone or radiating microtubules and two microtubular roots and a soft surface, frequently with reticulopodia. Corticoflagellates comprise photokaryotes (Plantae and chromalveolates, both ancestrally with cortical alveoli) and Excavata (a new protozoan infrakingdom comprising Loukozoa, Discicristata and Archezoa, ancestrally with three microtubular roots). All basal eukaryotic radiations were of mitochondrial aerobes; hydrogenosomes evolved polyphyletically from mitochondria long afterwards, the persistence of their double envelope long after their genomes disappeared being a striking instance of membrane heredity. I discuss the relationship between the 13 protozoan phyla recognized here and revise higher protozoan classification by updating as subkingdoms Lankester's 1878 division of Protozoa into Corticata (Excavata, Alveolata; with prominent cortical microtubules and ancestrally localized cytostome--the Parabasalia probably secondarily internalized the cytoskeleton) and Gymnomyxa [infrakingdoms Sarcomastigota (Choanozoa, Amoebozoa) and Rhizaria; both ancestrally with a non-cortical cytoskeleton of radiating singlet microtubules and a relatively soft cell surface with diffused feeding]. As the eukaryote root almost certainly lies within Gymnomyxa, probably among the Sarcomastigota, Corticata are derived. Following the single symbiogenetic origin of

  9. Eukaryotic diversity in an anaerobic aquifer polluted with landfill leachate.

    PubMed

    Brad, Traian; Braster, Martin; van Breukelen, Boris M; van Straalen, Nico M; Röling, Wilfred F M

    2008-07-01

    Eukaryotes may influence pollutant degradation processes in groundwater ecosystems by activities such as predation on bacteria and recycling of nutrients. Culture-independent community profiling and phylogenetic analysis of 18S rRNA gene fragments, as well as culturing, were employed to obtain insight into the sediment-associated eukaryotic community composition in an anaerobic sandy aquifer polluted with landfill leachate (Banisveld, The Netherlands). The microeukaryotic community at a depth of 1 to 5 m below the surface along a transect downgradient (21 to 68 m) from the landfill and at a clean reference location was diverse. Fungal sequences dominated most clone libraries. The fungal diversity was high, and most sequences were sequences of yeasts of the Basidiomycota. Sequences of green algae (Chlorophyta) were detected in parts of the aquifer close (<30 m) to the landfill. The bacterium-predating nanoflagellate Heteromita globosa (Cercozoa) was retrieved in enrichments, and its sequences dominated the clone library derived from the polluted aquifer at a depth of 5 m at a location 21 m downgradient from the landfill. The number of culturable eukaryotes ranged from 10(2) to 10(3) cells/g sediment. Culture-independent quantification revealed slightly higher numbers. Groundwater mesofauna was not detected. We concluded that the food chain in this polluted aquifer is short and consists of prokaryotes and fungi as decomposers of organic matter and protists as primary consumers of the prokaryotes.

  10. Evolution of proteasome regulators in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Fort, Philippe; Kajava, Andrey V; Delsuc, Fredéric; Coux, Olivier

    2015-05-01

    All living organisms require protein degradation to terminate biological processes and remove damaged proteins. One such machine is the 20S proteasome, a specialized barrel-shaped and compartmentalized multicatalytic protease. The activity of the 20S proteasome generally requires the binding of regulators/proteasome activators (PAs), which control the entrance of substrates. These include the PA700 (19S complex), which assembles with the 20S and forms the 26S proteasome and allows the efficient degradation of proteins usually labeled by ubiquitin tags, PA200 and PA28, which are involved in proteolysis through ubiquitin-independent mechanisms and PI31, which was initially identified as a 20S inhibitor in vitro. Unlike 20S proteasome, shown to be present in all Eukaryotes and Archaea, the evolutionary history of PAs remained fragmentary. Here, we made a comprehensive survey and phylogenetic analyses of the four types of regulators in 17 clades covering most of the eukaryotic supergroups. We found remarkable conservation of each PA700 subunit in all eukaryotes, indicating that the current complex PA700 structure was already set up in the last eukaryotic common ancestor (LECA). Also present in LECA, PA200, PA28, and PI31 showed a more contrasted evolutionary picture, because many lineages have subsequently lost one or two of them. The paramount conservation of PA700 composition in all eukaryotes and the dynamic evolution of PA200, PA28, and PI31 are discussed in the light of current knowledge on their physiological roles.

  11. Evolution of Proteasome Regulators in Eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Fort, Philippe; Kajava, Andrey V.; Delsuc, Fredéric; Coux, Olivier

    2015-01-01

    All living organisms require protein degradation to terminate biological processes and remove damaged proteins. One such machine is the 20S proteasome, a specialized barrel-shaped and compartmentalized multicatalytic protease. The activity of the 20S proteasome generally requires the binding of regulators/proteasome activators (PAs), which control the entrance of substrates. These include the PA700 (19S complex), which assembles with the 20S and forms the 26S proteasome and allows the efficient degradation of proteins usually labeled by ubiquitin tags, PA200 and PA28, which are involved in proteolysis through ubiquitin-independent mechanisms and PI31, which was initially identified as a 20S inhibitor in vitro. Unlike 20S proteasome, shown to be present in all Eukaryotes and Archaea, the evolutionary history of PAs remained fragmentary. Here, we made a comprehensive survey and phylogenetic analyses of the four types of regulators in 17 clades covering most of the eukaryotic supergroups. We found remarkable conservation of each PA700 subunit in all eukaryotes, indicating that the current complex PA700 structure was already set up in the last eukaryotic common ancestor (LECA). Also present in LECA, PA200, PA28, and PI31 showed a more contrasted evolutionary picture, because many lineages have subsequently lost one or two of them. The paramount conservation of PA700 composition in all eukaryotes and the dynamic evolution of PA200, PA28, and PI31 are discussed in the light of current knowledge on their physiological roles. PMID:25943340

  12. Comparative genomics and evolution of eukaryotic phospholipidbiosynthesis

    SciTech Connect

    Lykidis, Athanasios

    2006-12-01

    Phospholipid biosynthetic enzymes produce diverse molecular structures and are often present in multiple forms encoded by different genes. This work utilizes comparative genomics and phylogenetics for exploring the distribution, structure and evolution of phospholipid biosynthetic genes and pathways in 26 eukaryotic genomes. Although the basic structure of the pathways was formed early in eukaryotic evolution, the emerging picture indicates that individual enzyme families followed unique evolutionary courses. For example, choline and ethanolamine kinases and cytidylyltransferases emerged in ancestral eukaryotes, whereas, multiple forms of the corresponding phosphatidyltransferases evolved mainly in a lineage specific manner. Furthermore, several unicellular eukaryotes maintain bacterial-type enzymes and reactions for the synthesis of phosphatidylglycerol and cardiolipin. Also, base-exchange phosphatidylserine synthases are widespread and ancestral enzymes. The multiplicity of phospholipid biosynthetic enzymes has been largely generated by gene expansion in a lineage specific manner. Thus, these observations suggest that phospholipid biosynthesis has been an actively evolving system. Finally, comparative genomic analysis indicates the existence of novel phosphatidyltransferases and provides a candidate for the uncharacterized eukaryotic phosphatidylglycerol phosphate phosphatase.

  13. Atypical mitochondrial inheritance patterns in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Breton, Sophie; Stewart, Donald T

    2015-10-01

    Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) is predominantly maternally inherited in eukaryotes. Diverse molecular mechanisms underlying the phenomenon of strict maternal inheritance (SMI) of mtDNA have been described, but the evolutionary forces responsible for its predominance in eukaryotes remain to be elucidated. Exceptions to SMI have been reported in diverse eukaryotic taxa, leading to the prediction that several distinct molecular mechanisms controlling mtDNA transmission are present among the eukaryotes. We propose that these mechanisms will be better understood by studying the deviations from the predominating pattern of SMI. This minireview summarizes studies on eukaryote species with unusual or rare mitochondrial inheritance patterns, i.e., other than the predominant SMI pattern, such as maternal inheritance of stable heteroplasmy, paternal leakage of mtDNA, biparental and strictly paternal inheritance, and doubly uniparental inheritance of mtDNA. The potential genes and mechanisms involved in controlling mitochondrial inheritance in these organisms are discussed. The linkage between mitochondrial inheritance and sex determination is also discussed, given that the atypical systems of mtDNA inheritance examined in this minireview are frequently found in organisms with uncommon sexual systems such as gynodioecy, monoecy, or andromonoecy. The potential of deviations from SMI for facilitating a better understanding of a number of fundamental questions in biology, such as the evolution of mtDNA inheritance, the coevolution of nuclear and mitochondrial genomes, and, perhaps, the role of mitochondria in sex determination, is considerable.

  14. What was the real contribution of endosymbionts to the eukaryotic nucleus? Insights from photosynthetic eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Moreira, David; Deschamps, Philippe

    2014-07-01

    Eukaryotic genomes are composed of genes of different evolutionary origins. This is especially true in the case of photosynthetic eukaryotes, which, in addition to typical eukaryotic genes and genes of mitochondrial origin, also contain genes coming from the primary plastids and, in the case of secondary photosynthetic eukaryotes, many genes provided by the nuclei of red or green algal endosymbionts. Phylogenomic analyses have been applied to detect those genes and, in some cases, have led to proposing the existence of cryptic, no longer visible endosymbionts. However, detecting them is a very difficult task because, most often, those genes were acquired a long time ago and their phylogenetic signal has been heavily erased. We revisit here two examples, the putative cryptic endosymbiosis of green algae in diatoms and chromerids and of Chlamydiae in the first photosynthetic eukaryotes. We show that the evidence sustaining them has been largely overestimated, and we insist on the necessity of careful, accurate phylogenetic analyses to obtain reliable results.

  15. Communities of microbial eukaryotes in the mammalian gut within the context of environmental eukaryotic diversity.

    PubMed

    Parfrey, Laura Wegener; Walters, William A; Lauber, Christian L; Clemente, Jose C; Berg-Lyons, Donna; Teiling, Clotilde; Kodira, Chinnappa; Mohiuddin, Mohammed; Brunelle, Julie; Driscoll, Mark; Fierer, Noah; Gilbert, Jack A; Knight, Rob

    2014-01-01

    Eukaryotic microbes (protists) residing in the vertebrate gut influence host health and disease, but their diversity and distribution in healthy hosts is poorly understood. Protists found in the gut are typically considered parasites, but many are commensal and some are beneficial. Further, the hygiene hypothesis predicts that association with our co-evolved microbial symbionts may be important to overall health. It is therefore imperative that we understand the normal diversity of our eukaryotic gut microbiota to test for such effects and avoid eliminating commensal organisms. We assembled a dataset of healthy individuals from two populations, one with traditional, agrarian lifestyles and a second with modern, westernized lifestyles, and characterized the human eukaryotic microbiota via high-throughput sequencing. To place the human gut microbiota within a broader context our dataset also includes gut samples from diverse mammals and samples from other aquatic and terrestrial environments. We curated the SILVA ribosomal database to reflect current knowledge of eukaryotic taxonomy and employ it as a phylogenetic framework to compare eukaryotic diversity across environment. We show that adults from the non-western population harbor a diverse community of protists, and diversity in the human gut is comparable to that in other mammals. However, the eukaryotic microbiota of the western population appears depauperate. The distribution of symbionts found in mammals reflects both host phylogeny and diet. Eukaryotic microbiota in the gut are less diverse and more patchily distributed than bacteria. More broadly, we show that eukaryotic communities in the gut are less diverse than in aquatic and terrestrial habitats, and few taxa are shared across habitat types, and diversity patterns of eukaryotes are correlated with those observed for bacteria. These results outline the distribution and diversity of microbial eukaryotic communities in the mammalian gut and across

  16. Communities of microbial eukaryotes in the mammalian gut within the context of environmental eukaryotic diversity

    PubMed Central

    Parfrey, Laura Wegener; Walters, William A.; Lauber, Christian L.; Clemente, Jose C.; Berg-Lyons, Donna; Teiling, Clotilde; Kodira, Chinnappa; Mohiuddin, Mohammed; Brunelle, Julie; Driscoll, Mark; Fierer, Noah; Gilbert, Jack A.; Knight, Rob

    2014-01-01

    Eukaryotic microbes (protists) residing in the vertebrate gut influence host health and disease, but their diversity and distribution in healthy hosts is poorly understood. Protists found in the gut are typically considered parasites, but many are commensal and some are beneficial. Further, the hygiene hypothesis predicts that association with our co-evolved microbial symbionts may be important to overall health. It is therefore imperative that we understand the normal diversity of our eukaryotic gut microbiota to test for such effects and avoid eliminating commensal organisms. We assembled a dataset of healthy individuals from two populations, one with traditional, agrarian lifestyles and a second with modern, westernized lifestyles, and characterized the human eukaryotic microbiota via high-throughput sequencing. To place the human gut microbiota within a broader context our dataset also includes gut samples from diverse mammals and samples from other aquatic and terrestrial environments. We curated the SILVA ribosomal database to reflect current knowledge of eukaryotic taxonomy and employ it as a phylogenetic framework to compare eukaryotic diversity across environment. We show that adults from the non-western population harbor a diverse community of protists, and diversity in the human gut is comparable to that in other mammals. However, the eukaryotic microbiota of the western population appears depauperate. The distribution of symbionts found in mammals reflects both host phylogeny and diet. Eukaryotic microbiota in the gut are less diverse and more patchily distributed than bacteria. More broadly, we show that eukaryotic communities in the gut are less diverse than in aquatic and terrestrial habitats, and few taxa are shared across habitat types, and diversity patterns of eukaryotes are correlated with those observed for bacteria. These results outline the distribution and diversity of microbial eukaryotic communities in the mammalian gut and across

  17. Structure and function of eukaryotic chromosomes

    SciTech Connect

    Hennig, W.

    1987-01-01

    Contents: Introduction; Polytene Chromosomel Giant Chromosomes in Ciliates; The sp-I Genes in the Balbiani Rings of Chironomus Salivary Glands; The White Locus of Drosophila Melanogaster; The Genetic and Molecular Organization of the Dense Cluster of Functionally Related Vital Genes in the DOPA Decarboxylase Region of the Drosophila melanogaster Genome; Heat Shock Puffs and Response to Environmental Stress; The Y Chromosomal Lampbrush Loops of Drosophila; Contributions of Electron Microscopic Spreading Preparations (''Miller Spreads'') to the Analysis of Chromosome Structure; Replication of DNA in Eukaryotic Chromosomes; Gene Amplification in Dipteran Chromosomes; The Significance of Plant Transposable Elements in Biologically Relevant Processes; Arrangement of Chromosomes in Interphase Cell Nuclei; Heterochromatin and the Phenomenon of Chromosome Banding; Multiple Nonhistone Protein-DNA Complexes in Chromatin Regulate the Cell- and Stage-Specific Activity of an Eukaryotic Gene; Genetics of Sex Determination in Eukaryotes; Application of Basic Chromosome Research in Biotechnology and Medicine. This book presents an overview of various aspects of chromosome research.

  18. Force generation in a regrowing eukaryotic flagellum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Polin, Marco; Bruneau, Bastien; Johnson, Thomas; Goldstein, Raymond

    2012-02-01

    Flagella are whip-like organelles with a complex internal structure, the axoneme, highly conserved across eukaryotic species. The highly regulated activity of motor proteins arranged along the axoneme moves the flagellum in the surrounding fluid, generating forces that can be used for swimming or fluid propulsion. Although our understanding of the general mechanism behind flagellar motion is well established, the details of its implementation in a real axoneme is still poorly understood. Here we explore the inner working of the eukaryotic flagellum using a uniflagellated mutant of the unicellular green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii to investigate in detail the force and power generated by a moving flagellum during axonemal regrowth after deflagellation. These experiments will contribute to our understanding of the inner working of the eukaryotic flagellum.

  19. Osmosensing and osmoregulation in unicellular eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Suescún-Bolívar, Luis Parmenio; Thomé, Patricia Elena

    2015-03-01

    Eukaryotic microorganisms possess mechanisms to detect osmotic variations in their surroundings, from specialized receptors and membrane transporters, to sophisticated systems such as two-component histidine kinases. Osmotic stimuli are transduced through conserved phosphorylation cascades that result in a rapid response to mitigate stress. This response allows for the maintenance of an optimal biochemical environment for cell functioning, as well as a suitable recovery in suboptimal environments that would otherwise endanger cell survival. The molecular basis of these responses has been largely studied in yeasts and bacteria. However, fewer studies have been published concerning the molecular basis of osmoregulation in other eukaryotic microorganisms such as protozoans and microalgae. Here, we review the main osmosensors reported in unicellular eukaryotic microorganisms (yeasts, microalgae and protozoa) and the pathways that maintain homeostasis in cells encountering hyperosmotic challenges.

  20. Mitochondrion-related organelles in eukaryotic protists.

    PubMed

    Shiflett, April M; Johnson, Patricia J

    2010-01-01

    The discovery of mitochondrion-type genes in organisms thought to lack mitochondria led to the demonstration that hydrogenosomes share a common ancestry with mitochondria, as well as the discovery of mitosomes in multiple eukaryotic lineages. No examples of examined eukaryotes lacking a mitochondrion-related organelle exist, implying that the endosymbiont that gave rise to the mitochondrion was present in the first eukaryote. These organelles, known as hydrogenosomes, mitosomes, or mitochondrion-like organelles, are typically reduced, both structurally and biochemically, relative to classical mitochondria. However, despite their diversification and adaptation to different niches, all appear to play a role in Fe-S cluster assembly, as observed for mitochondria. Although evidence supports the use of common protein targeting mechanisms in the biogenesis of these diverse organelles, divergent features are also apparent. This review examines the metabolism and biogenesis of these organelles in divergent unicellular microbes, with a focus on parasitic protists.

  1. N6-methyladenine functions as a potential epigenetic mark in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Sun, Qinmiao; Huang, Shoujun; Wang, Xiaona; Zhu, Yuanxiang; Chen, Zhenping; Chen, Dahua

    2015-11-01

    N(6)-methyladenine (6mA) is one of the most abundant types of DNA methylation, and plays an important role in bacteria; however, its roles in higher eukaryotes, such as plants, insects, and mammals, have been considered less important. Recent studies highlight that 6mA does indeed occur, and that it plays an important role in eukaryotes, such as worm, fly, and green algae, and thus the regulation of 6mA has emerged as a novel epigenetic mechanism in higher eukaryotes. Despite this intriguing development, a number of important issues regarding its biological roles are yet to be addressed. In this review, we focus on the 5mC and 6mA modifications in terms of their production, distribution, and the erasure of 6mA in higher eukaryotes including mammals. We perform an analysis of the potential functions of 6mA, hence widening understanding of this new epigenetic mark in higher eukaryotes, and suggesting future studies in this field.

  2. Uniquely designed nuclear structures of lower eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Iwamoto, Masaaki; Hiraoka, Yasushi; Haraguchi, Tokuko

    2016-06-01

    The nuclear structures of lower eukaryotes, specifically protists, often vary from those of yeasts and metazoans. Several studies have demonstrated the unique and fascinating features of these nuclear structures, such as a histone-independent condensed chromatin in dinoflagellates and two structurally distinct nuclear pore complexes in ciliates. Despite their unique molecular/structural features, functions required for formation of their cognate molecules/structures are highly conserved. This provides important information about the structure-function relationship of the nuclear structures. In this review, we highlight characteristic nuclear structures found in lower eukaryotes, and discuss their attractiveness as potential biological systems for studying nuclear structures.

  3. Recombinant vector and eukaryotic host transformed thereby

    SciTech Connect

    Sugden, W.M.

    1987-08-11

    A recombinant plasmid is described comprising: a segment from a first plasmid which is not a lymphotrophic herpes virus segment and which facilitates the replication of the recombinant plasmid in a prokaryotic host; a segment from a lymphotrophic herpes virus which is linked to the first plasmid segment such that is a capable of assisting in maintaining the recombinant plasmid as a plasmid if the recombinant plasmid is inserted into a eukaryotic host that has been transformed by the lymphotrophic herpes virus; and a foreign eukaryotic gene component linked as part of the recombinant plasmid.

  4. Reproduction, symbiosis, and the eukaryotic cell.

    PubMed

    Godfrey-Smith, Peter

    2015-08-18

    This paper develops a conceptual framework for addressing questions about reproduction, individuality, and the units of selection in symbiotic associations, with special attention to the origin of the eukaryotic cell. Three kinds of reproduction are distinguished, and a possible evolutionary sequence giving rise to a mitochondrion-containing eukaryotic cell from an endosymbiotic partnership is analyzed as a series of transitions between each of the three forms of reproduction. The sequence of changes seen in this "egalitarian" evolutionary transition is compared with those that apply in "fraternal" transitions, such as the evolution of multicellularity in animals.

  5. Why did eukaryotes evolve only once? Genetic and energetic aspects of conflict and conflict mediation.

    PubMed

    Blackstone, Neil W

    2013-07-19

    According to multi-level theory, evolutionary transitions require mediating conflicts between lower-level units in favour of the higher-level unit. By this view, the origin of eukaryotes and the origin of multicellularity would seem largely equivalent. Yet, eukaryotes evolved only once in the history of life, whereas multicellular eukaryotes have evolved many times. Examining conflicts between evolutionary units and mechanisms that mediate these conflicts can illuminate these differences. Energy-converting endosymbionts that allow eukaryotes to transcend surface-to-volume constraints also can allocate energy into their own selfish replication. This principal conflict in the origin of eukaryotes can be mediated by genetic or energetic mechanisms. Genome transfer diminishes the heritable variation of the symbiont, but requires the de novo evolution of the protein-import apparatus and was opposed by selection for selfish symbionts. By contrast, metabolic signalling is a shared primitive feature of all cells. Redox state of the cytosol is an emergent feature that cannot be subverted by an individual symbiont. Hypothetical scenarios illustrate how metabolic regulation may have mediated the conflicts inherent at different stages in the origin of eukaryotes. Aspects of metabolic regulation may have subsequently been coopted from within-cell to between-cell pathways, allowing multicellularity to emerge repeatedly.

  6. Challenges in Whole-Genome Annotation of Pyrosequenced Eukaryotic Genomes

    SciTech Connect

    Kuo, Alan; Grigoriev, Igor

    2009-04-17

    Pyrosequencing technologies such as 454/Roche and Solexa/Illumina vastly lower the cost of nucleotide sequencing compared to the traditional Sanger method, and thus promise to greatly expand the number of sequenced eukaryotic genomes. However, the new technologies also bring new challenges such as shorter reads and new kinds and higher rates of sequencing errors, which complicate genome assembly and gene prediction. At JGI we are deploying 454 technology for the sequencing and assembly of ever-larger eukaryotic genomes. Here we describe our first whole-genome annotation of a purely 454-sequenced fungal genome that is larger than a yeast (>30 Mbp). The pezizomycotine (filamentous ascomycote) Aspergillus carbonarius belongs to the Aspergillus section Nigri species complex, members of which are significant as platforms for bioenergy and bioindustrial technology, as members of soil microbial communities and players in the global carbon cycle, and as agricultural toxigens. Application of a modified version of the standard JGI Annotation Pipeline has so far predicted ~;;10k genes. ~;;12percent of these preliminary annotations suffer a potential frameshift error, which is somewhat higher than the ~;;9percent rate in the Sanger-sequenced and conventionally assembled and annotated genome of fellow Aspergillus section Nigri member A. niger. Also,>90percent of A. niger genes have potential homologs in the A. carbonarius preliminary annotation. Weconclude, and with further annotation and comparative analysis expect to confirm, that 454 sequencing strategies provide a promising substrate for annotation of modestly sized eukaryotic genomes. We will also present results of annotation of a number of other pyrosequenced fungal genomes of bioenergy interest.

  7. The origin of the eukaryotic cell

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hartman, H.

    1984-01-01

    The endosymbiotic hypothesis for the origin of the eukaryotic cell has been applied to the origin of the mitochondria and chloroplasts. However as has been pointed out by Mereschowsky in 1905, it should also be applied to the nucleus as well. If the nucleus, mitochondria and chloroplasts are endosymbionts, then it is likely that the organism that did the engulfing was not a DNA-based organism. In fact, it is useful to postulate that this organism was a primitive RNA-based organism. This hypothesis would explain the preponderance of RNA viruses found in eukaryotic cells. The centriole and basal body do not have a double membrane or DNA. Like all MTOCs (microtubule organising centres), they have a structural or morphic RNA implicated in their formation. This would argue for their origin in the early RNA-based organism rather than in an endosymbiotic event involving bacteria. Finally, the eukaryotic cell uses RNA in ways quite unlike bacteria, thus pointing to a greater emphasis of RNA in both control and structure in the cell. The origin of the eukaryotic cell may tell us why it rather than its prokaryotic relative evolved into the metazoans who are reading this paper.

  8. Modelling the Eukaryotic Chromosome: A Stepped Approach.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nicholl, Linda A. A.; Nicholl, Desmond S. T.

    1987-01-01

    Describes how a series of models can be constructed to illustrate the structure of eukaryotic chromosomes, emphasizing the structure of DNA. Suggests that by adapting a different scale for each series of models, a complete picture of the complex nature of the chromosome can be built up. (TW)

  9. Construction of bacteria-eukaryote synthetic mutualism.

    PubMed

    Kubo, Isao; Hosoda, Kazufumi; Suzuki, Shingo; Yamamoto, Kayo; Kihara, Kumiko; Mori, Kotaro; Yomo, Tetsuya

    2013-08-01

    Mutualism is ubiquitous in nature but is known to be intrinsically vulnerable with regard to both population dynamics and evolution. Synthetic ecology has indicated that it is feasible for organisms to establish novel mutualism merely through encountering each other by showing that it is feasible to construct synthetic mutualism between organisms. However, bacteria-eukaryote mutualism, which is ecologically important, has not yet been constructed. In this study, we synthetically constructed mutualism between a bacterium and a eukaryote by using two model organisms. We mixed a bacterium, Escherichia coli (a genetically engineered glutamine auxotroph), and an amoeba, Dictyostelium discoideum, in 14 sets of conditions in which each species could not grow in monoculture but potentially could grow in coculture. Under a single condition in which the bacterium and amoeba mutually compensated for the lack of required nutrients (lipoic acid and glutamine, respectively), both species grew continuously through several subcultures, essentially establishing mutualism. Our results shed light on the establishment of bacteria-eukaryote mutualism and indicate that a bacterium and eukaryote pair in nature also has a non-negligible possibility of establishing novel mutualism if the organisms are potentially mutualistic. PMID:23711432

  10. Eukaryotic transposable elements as mutagenic agents

    SciTech Connect

    Lambert, M.E. . Banbury Center); McDonald, J.F. ); Weinstein, I.B. )

    1988-01-01

    This book contains the proceedings on eukaryotic transposable elements as mutagenic agents. Topics covered include: overview of prokaryotic transposable elements, mutational effects of transposable element insertions, inducers/regulators of transposable element expression and transposition, genomic stress and environmental effects, and inducers/regulators of retroviral element expression.

  11. Marine subsurface eukaryotes: the fungal majority.

    PubMed

    Edgcomb, Virginia P; Beaudoin, David; Gast, Rebecca; Biddle, Jennifer F; Teske, Andreas

    2011-01-01

    Studies on the microbial communities of deep subsurface sediments have indicated the presence of Bacteria and Archaea throughout the sediment column. Microbial eukaryotes could also be present in deep-sea subsurface sediments; either bacterivorous protists or eukaryotes capable of assimilating buried organic carbon. DNA- and RNA-based clone library analyses are used here to examine the microbial eukaryotic diversity and identify the potentially active members in deep-sea sediment cores of the Peru Margin and the Peru Trench. We compared surface communities with those much deeper in the same cores, and compared cores from different sites. Fungal sequences were most often recovered from both DNA- and RNA-based clone libraries, with variable overall abundances of different sequence types and different dominant clone types in the RNA-based and the DNA-based libraries. Surficial sediment communities were different from each other and from the deep subsurface samples. Some fungal sequences represented potentially novel organisms as well as ones with a cosmopolitan distribution in terrestrial, fresh and salt water environments. Our results indicate that fungi are the most consistently detected eukaryotes in the marine sedimentary subsurface; further, some species may be specifically adapted to the deep subsurface and may play important roles in the utilization and recycling of nutrients.

  12. Eukaryotic-Like Virus Budding in Archaea

    PubMed Central

    Quemin, Emmanuelle R. J.; Chlanda, Petr; Sachse, Martin; Forterre, Patrick

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Similar to many eukaryotic viruses (and unlike bacteriophages), viruses infecting archaea are often encased in lipid-containing envelopes. However, the mechanisms of their morphogenesis and egress remain unexplored. Here, we used dual-axis electron tomography (ET) to characterize the morphogenesis of Sulfolobus spindle-shaped virus 1 (SSV1), the prototype of the family Fuselloviridae and representative of the most abundant archaea-specific group of viruses. Our results show that SSV1 assembly and egress are concomitant and occur at the cellular cytoplasmic membrane via a process highly reminiscent of the budding of enveloped viruses that infect eukaryotes. The viral nucleoprotein complexes are extruded in the form of previously unknown rod-shaped intermediate structures which have an envelope continuous with the host membrane. Further maturation into characteristic spindle-shaped virions takes place while virions remain attached to the cell surface. Our data also revealed the formation of constricted ring-like structures which resemble the budding necks observed prior to the ESCRT machinery-mediated membrane scission during egress of various enveloped viruses of eukaryotes. Collectively, we provide evidence that archaeal spindle-shaped viruses contain a lipid envelope acquired upon budding of the viral nucleoprotein complex through the host cytoplasmic membrane. The proposed model bears a clear resemblance to the egress strategy employed by enveloped eukaryotic viruses and raises important questions as to how the archaeal single-layered membrane composed of tetraether lipids can undergo scission. PMID:27624130

  13. Functions of inorganic polyphosphates in eukaryotic cells: a coat of many colours.

    PubMed

    Azevedo, Cristina; Saiardi, Adolfo

    2014-02-01

    PolyP (inorganic polyphosphate) is a linear polymer of tens to hundreds of orthophosphate residues linked by high-energy phosphoanhydride bonds. This polymer is present in all living organisms from bacteria to mammals. Until recently, most of the studies on polyP have focused on its function in prokaryotes. In prokaryotes, polyP has been implicated in many unrelated processes ranging from basic metabolism to structural functions. However, polyP analysis and function in higher eukaryotes has been gaining momentum recently. In the present review, we mainly aim to discuss the proposed intracellular functions of polyP in higher eukaryotes and its detection methods.

  14. Towards a palaeoecological model of the Mesoproterozoic Taoudeni Basin, Mauritania, Northwestern Africa: implications for early eukaryote evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beghin, Jérémie; Guilbaud, Romain; Poulton, Simon W.; Gueneli, Nur; Brocks, Jochen J.; Storme, Jean-Yves; Blanpied, Christian; Javaux, Emmanuelle J.

    2016-04-01

    ) marine environments during a depositional sequence linked to a marine transgression and regression. Both microfossil assemblages and iron speciation were analyzed on the same samples, with the aim of better understanding the palaeoecology of early eukaryotes. Palaeoredox conditions rapidly fluctuated from oxic to anoxic states across the basin, but in terms of anoxic episodes, ferruginous conditions dominated in epicratonic environments, while euxinia was more prevalent in pericratonic environments. During the marine transgression, a relatively higher fossil eukaryotic diversity, both in terms of richness and abundance, was observed in the more proximal epicratonic environments while no eukaryotes were found in the more distal epicratonic environments; a relatively lower eukaryotic diversity was observed in pericratonic environments. After the marine regression, a relatively lower eukaryotic diversity was observed both in epicratonic and pericratonic environments. Our results could possibly suggest that both the availability of molecular oxygen and nutrients are needed for a high eukaryotic diversity and could confirm previous hypotheses suggesting that mid-Proterozoic eukaryotes would have found suitable ecological niches in shallow marine environments near nutrient sources.

  15. Anaerobic energy metabolism in unicellular photosynthetic eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Atteia, Ariane; van Lis, Robert; Tielens, Aloysius G M; Martin, William F

    2013-02-01

    Anaerobic metabolic pathways allow unicellular organisms to tolerate or colonize anoxic environments. Over the past ten years, genome sequencing projects have brought a new light on the extent of anaerobic metabolism in eukaryotes. A surprising development has been that free-living unicellular algae capable of photoautotrophic lifestyle are, in terms of their enzymatic repertoire, among the best equipped eukaryotes known when it comes to anaerobic energy metabolism. Some of these algae are marine organisms, common in the oceans, others are more typically soil inhabitants. All these species are important from the ecological (O(2)/CO(2) budget), biotechnological, and evolutionary perspectives. In the unicellular algae surveyed here, mixed-acid type fermentations are widespread while anaerobic respiration, which is more typical of eukaryotic heterotrophs, appears to be rare. The presence of a core anaerobic metabolism among the algae provides insights into its evolutionary origin, which traces to the eukaryote common ancestor. The predicted fermentative enzymes often exhibit an amino acid extension at the N-terminus, suggesting that these proteins might be compartmentalized in the cell, likely in the chloroplast or the mitochondrion. The green algae Chlamydomonas reinhardtii and Chlorella NC64 have the most extended set of fermentative enzymes reported so far. Among the eukaryotes with secondary plastids, the diatom Thalassiosira pseudonana has the most pronounced anaerobic capabilities as yet. From the standpoints of genomic, transcriptomic, and biochemical studies, anaerobic energy metabolism in C. reinhardtii remains the best characterized among photosynthetic protists. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: The evolutionary aspects of bioenergetic systems.

  16. Circular code motifs in genomes of eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    El Soufi, Karim; Michel, Christian J

    2016-11-01

    A set X of 20 trinucleotides was identified in genes of bacteria, eukaryotes, plasmids and viruses, which has in average the highest occurrence in reading frame compared to its two shifted frames (Michel, 2015; Arquès and Michel, 1996). This set X has an interesting mathematical property as X is a circular code (Arquès and Michel, 1996). Thus, the motifs from this circular code X, called X motifs, have the property to always retrieve, synchronize and maintain the reading frame in genes. In this paper, we develop several statistical analyzes of X motifs in 138 available complete genomes of eukaryotes in which genes as well as non-gene regions are examined. Large X motifs (with lengths of at least 15 consecutive trinucleotides of X and compositions of at least 10 different trinucleotides of X among 20) have the highest occurrence in genomes of eukaryotes compared to its 23 large bijective motifs, its two large permuted motifs and large random motifs. The largest X motifs identified in eukaryotic genomes are presented, e.g. an X motif in a non-gene region of the genome Solanum pennellii with a length of 155 trinucleotides (465 nucleotides) and an expectation E=10(-71). In the human genome, the largest X motif occurs in a non-gene region of the chromosome 13 with a length of 36 trinucleotides and an expectation E=10(-11). X motifs in non-gene regions of genomes could be evolutionary relics of primitive genes using the circular code for translation. However, the proportion of X motifs (with lengths of at least 10 consecutive trinucleotides of X and compositions of at least 5 different trinucleotides of X among 20) in genes/non-genes of the 138 complete eukaryotic genomes is about 8. Thus, the X motifs occur preferentially in genes, as expected from the previous works of 20 years.

  17. Eukaryotic diversity at pH extremes.

    PubMed

    Amaral-Zettler, Linda A

    2012-01-01

    Extremely acidic (pH < 3) and extremely alkaline (pH > 9) environments support a diversity of single-cell and to a lesser extent, multicellular eukaryotic life. This study compared alpha and beta diversity in eukaryotic communities from seven diverse aquatic environments with pH values ranging from 2 to 11 using massively-parallel pyrotag sequencing targeting the V9 hypervariable region of the 18S ribosomal RNA (rRNA) gene. A total of 946 operational taxonomic units (OTUs) were recovered at a 6% cut-off level (94% similarity) across the sampled environments. Hierarchical clustering of the samples segregated the communities into acidic and alkaline groups. Similarity percentage (SIMPER) analysis followed by indicator OTU analysis (IOA) and non-metric multidimensional scaling (NMDS) were used to determine which characteristic groups of eukaryotic taxa typify acidic or alkaline extremes and the extent to which pH explains eukaryotic community structure in these environments. Spain's Rio Tinto yielded the fewest observed OTUs while Nebraska Sandhills alkaline lakes yielded the most. Distinct OTUs, including metazoan OTUs, numerically dominated pH extreme sites. Indicator OTUs included the diatom Pinnularia and unidentified opisthokonts (Fungi and Filasterea) in the extremely acidic environments, and the ciliate Frontonia across the extremely alkaline sites. Inferred from NMDS, pH explained only a modest fraction of the variation across the datasets, indicating that other factors influence the underlying community structure in these environments. The findings from this study suggest that the ability for eukaryotes to adapt to pH extremes over a broad range of values may be rare, but further study of taxa that can broadly adapt across diverse acidic and alkaline environments, respectively present good models for understanding adaptation and should be targeted for future investigations.

  18. Eukaryotic diversity at pH extremes

    PubMed Central

    Amaral-Zettler, Linda A.

    2013-01-01

    Extremely acidic (pH < 3) and extremely alkaline (pH > 9) environments support a diversity of single-cell and to a lesser extent, multicellular eukaryotic life. This study compared alpha and beta diversity in eukaryotic communities from seven diverse aquatic environments with pH values ranging from 2 to 11 using massively-parallel pyrotag sequencing targeting the V9 hypervariable region of the 18S ribosomal RNA (rRNA) gene. A total of 946 operational taxonomic units (OTUs) were recovered at a 6% cut-off level (94% similarity) across the sampled environments. Hierarchical clustering of the samples segregated the communities into acidic and alkaline groups. Similarity percentage (SIMPER) analysis followed by indicator OTU analysis (IOA) and non-metric multidimensional scaling (NMDS) were used to determine which characteristic groups of eukaryotic taxa typify acidic or alkaline extremes and the extent to which pH explains eukaryotic community structure in these environments. Spain's Rio Tinto yielded the fewest observed OTUs while Nebraska Sandhills alkaline lakes yielded the most. Distinct OTUs, including metazoan OTUs, numerically dominated pH extreme sites. Indicator OTUs included the diatom Pinnularia and unidentified opisthokonts (Fungi and Filasterea) in the extremely acidic environments, and the ciliate Frontonia across the extremely alkaline sites. Inferred from NMDS, pH explained only a modest fraction of the variation across the datasets, indicating that other factors influence the underlying community structure in these environments. The findings from this study suggest that the ability for eukaryotes to adapt to pH extremes over a broad range of values may be rare, but further study of taxa that can broadly adapt across diverse acidic and alkaline environments, respectively present good models for understanding adaptation and should be targeted for future investigations. PMID:23335919

  19. [The origin of the eukaryotic cell. III. Principles of the morphofunctional organization of the eukaryotic cell].

    PubMed

    Seravin, L N

    1986-08-01

    The eukaryotic plasmalemma, eukaryotic cytoplasm with its usual cytomembranes, and eukaryotic nucleus are obligatory components of the eukaryotic cell. All other structural elements (organelles) are only derivates of the aforesaid cell components and they may be absent sometimes. There are protozoans having simultaneously no flagelles, mitochondria and chloroplasts (all the representatives of phylum Microspora, amoeba Pelomyxa palustris, and others). The following five general principles play the main role in the morphofunctional organization of the cell. The principle of hierarchy of block organization of living systems. Complex morphofunctional blocks (organelles) specific for the eukaryotic cell are formed. The compartmentalization principle. The main cell organelles (nuclei, flagellae, mitochondria, chloroplasts, etc.) undergo a relative morphological isolation from each other and other cell organelles by means of the total or partial surrounding by membranes; this may ensure the originality of their evolution and function. The principle of poly- and oligomerization of morphofunctional blocks. It permits the cell to enlarge its sizes and to raise the level of integration. The principle of heterochrony, including three subprinciples: conservatism of useful signs; a strong acceleration of evolutionary development of the separate blocks; simplification of the structure, reduction or total disappearance of some blocks. It explains a preservation of prokaryotic signs in the eukaryotic cell or in its organelles. The principle of independent origin of similar morphofunctional blocks in the process of evolution of living systems. The parallelism of the signs in unrelated groups of cells (or protists) arises due to this principle.

  20. Ribosomal RNA sequence suggest microsporidia are extremely ancient eukaryotes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vossbrinck, C. R.; Maddox, J. V.; Friedman, S.; Debrunner-Vossbrinck, B. A.; Woese, C. R.

    1987-01-01

    A comparative sequence analysis of the 18S small subunit ribosomal RNA (rRNA) of the microsporidium Vairimorpha necatrix is presented. The results show that this rRNA sequence is more unlike those of other eukaryotes than any known eukaryote rRNA sequence. It is concluded that the lineage leading to microsporidia branched very early from that leading to other eukaryotes.

  1. Endosymbiotic origin and differential loss of eukaryotic genes.

    PubMed

    Ku, Chuan; Nelson-Sathi, Shijulal; Roettger, Mayo; Sousa, Filipa L; Lockhart, Peter J; Bryant, David; Hazkani-Covo, Einat; McInerney, James O; Landan, Giddy; Martin, William F

    2015-08-27

    Chloroplasts arose from cyanobacteria, mitochondria arose from proteobacteria. Both organelles have conserved their prokaryotic biochemistry, but their genomes are reduced, and most organelle proteins are encoded in the nucleus. Endosymbiotic theory posits that bacterial genes in eukaryotic genomes entered the eukaryotic lineage via organelle ancestors. It predicts episodic influx of prokaryotic genes into the eukaryotic lineage, with acquisition corresponding to endosymbiotic events. Eukaryotic genome sequences, however, increasingly implicate lateral gene transfer, both from prokaryotes to eukaryotes and among eukaryotes, as a source of gene content variation in eukaryotic genomes, which predicts continuous, lineage-specific acquisition of prokaryotic genes in divergent eukaryotic groups. Here we discriminate between these two alternatives by clustering and phylogenetic analysis of eukaryotic gene families having prokaryotic homologues. Our results indicate (1) that gene transfer from bacteria to eukaryotes is episodic, as revealed by gene distributions, and coincides with major evolutionary transitions at the origin of chloroplasts and mitochondria; (2) that gene inheritance in eukaryotes is vertical, as revealed by extensive topological comparison, sparse gene distributions stemming from differential loss; and (3) that continuous, lineage-specific lateral gene transfer, although it sometimes occurs, does not contribute to long-term gene content evolution in eukaryotic genomes.

  2. Eukaryotic evolution: getting to the root of the problem.

    PubMed

    Simpson, Alastair G B; Roger, Andrew J

    2002-10-15

    Comparative analyses of multiple genes suggest most known eukaryotes can be classified into half a dozen 'super-groups'. A new investigation of the distribution of a fused gene pair amongst these 'super-groups' has greatly narrowed the possible positions of the root of the eukaryote tree, clarifying the broad outlines of early eukaryote evolution.

  3. Eukaryotic algal phytochromes span the visible spectrum.

    PubMed

    Rockwell, Nathan C; Duanmu, Deqiang; Martin, Shelley S; Bachy, Charles; Price, Dana C; Bhattacharya, Debashish; Worden, Alexandra Z; Lagarias, J Clark

    2014-03-11

    Plant phytochromes are photoswitchable red/far-red photoreceptors that allow competition with neighboring plants for photosynthetically active red light. In aquatic environments, red and far-red light are rapidly attenuated with depth; therefore, photosynthetic species must use shorter wavelengths of light. Nevertheless, phytochrome-related proteins are found in recently sequenced genomes of many eukaryotic algae from aquatic environments. We examined the photosensory properties of seven phytochromes from diverse algae: four prasinophyte (green algal) species, the heterokont (brown algal) Ectocarpus siliculosus, and two glaucophyte species. We demonstrate that algal phytochromes are not limited to red and far-red responses. Instead, different algal phytochromes can sense orange, green, and even blue light. Characterization of these previously undescribed photosensors using CD spectroscopy supports a structurally heterogeneous chromophore in the far-red-absorbing photostate. Our study thus demonstrates that extensive spectral tuning of phytochromes has evolved in phylogenetically distinct lineages of aquatic photosynthetic eukaryotes.

  4. A Eukaryotic Sensor for Membrane Lipid Saturation.

    PubMed

    Covino, Roberto; Ballweg, Stephanie; Stordeur, Claudius; Michaelis, Jonas B; Puth, Kristina; Wernig, Florian; Bahrami, Amir; Ernst, Andreas M; Hummer, Gerhard; Ernst, Robert

    2016-07-01

    Maintaining a fluid bilayer is essential for cell signaling and survival. Lipid saturation is a key factor determining lipid packing and membrane fluidity, and it must be tightly controlled to guarantee organelle function and identity. A dedicated eukaryotic mechanism of lipid saturation sensing, however, remains elusive. Here we show that Mga2, a transcription factor conserved among fungi, acts as a lipid-packing sensor in the ER membrane to control the production of unsaturated fatty acids. Systematic mutagenesis, molecular dynamics simulations, and electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy identify a pivotal role of the oligomeric transmembrane helix (TMH) of Mga2 for intra-membrane sensing, and they show that the lipid environment controls the proteolytic activation of Mga2 by stabilizing alternative rotational orientations of the TMH region. This work establishes a eukaryotic strategy of lipid saturation sensing that differs significantly from the analogous bacterial mechanism relying on hydrophobic thickness. PMID:27320200

  5. Structural insights into eukaryotic aquaporin regulation.

    PubMed

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

    2010-06-18

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

  6. Gene Positioning Effects on Expression in Eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Huy Q; Bosco, Giovanni

    2015-01-01

    The packaging and organization of the genome within the eukaryotic interphase nucleus directly influence how the genes are expressed. An underappreciated aspect of genome structure is that it is highly dynamic and that the physical positioning of a gene can impart control over its transcriptional status. In this review, we assess the current knowledge of how gene positioning at different levels of genome organization can directly influence gene expression during interphase. The levels of organization discussed include chromatin looping, topologically associated domains, chromosome territories, and nuclear compartments. We discuss specific studies demonstrating that gene positioning is a dynamic and highly regulated feature of the eukaryotic genome that allows for the essential spatiotemporal regulation of genes.

  7. Symbiosis and the origin of eukaryotic motility

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Margulis, L.; Hinkle, G.

    1991-01-01

    Ongoing work to test the hypothesis of the origin of eukaryotic cell organelles by microbial symbioses is discussed. Because of the widespread acceptance of the serial endosymbiotic theory (SET) of the origin of plastids and mitochondria, the idea of the symbiotic origin of the centrioles and axonemes for spirochete bacteria motility symbiosis was tested. Intracellular microtubular systems are purported to derive from symbiotic associations between ancestral eukaryotic cells and motile bacteria. Four lines of approach to this problem are being pursued: (1) cloning the gene of a tubulin-like protein discovered in Spirocheata bajacaliforniesis; (2) seeking axoneme proteins in spirochets by antibody cross-reaction; (3) attempting to cultivate larger, free-living spirochetes; and (4) studying in detail spirochetes (e.g., Cristispira) symbiotic with marine animals. Other aspects of the investigation are presented.

  8. Towards New Antifolates Targeting Eukaryotic Opportunistic Infections

    SciTech Connect

    Liu, J.; Bolstad, D; Bolstad, E; Wright, D; Anderson, A

    2009-01-01

    Trimethoprim, an antifolate commonly prescribed in combination with sulfamethoxazole, potently inhibits several prokaryotic species of dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR). However, several eukaryotic pathogenic organisms are resistant to trimethoprim, preventing its effective use as a therapeutic for those infections. We have been building a program to reengineer trimethoprim to more potently and selectively inhibit eukaryotic species of DHFR as a viable strategy for new drug discovery targeting several opportunistic pathogens. We have developed a series of compounds that exhibit potent and selective inhibition of DHFR from the parasitic protozoa Cryptosporidium and Toxoplasma as well as the fungus Candida glabrata. A comparison of the structures of DHFR from the fungal species Candida glabrata and Pneumocystis suggests that the compounds may also potently inhibit Pneumocystis DHFR.

  9. The architecture of a eukaryotic replisome

    SciTech Connect

    Sun, Jingchuan; Yuan, Zuanning; Shi, Yi; Georgescu, Roxana E.; Chait, Brian T.; Li, Huilin; O'Donnell, Michael E.

    2015-11-02

    At the eukaryotic DNA replication fork, it is widely believed that the Cdc45–Mcm2–7–GINS (CMG) helicase is positioned in front to unwind DNA and that DNA polymerases trail behind the helicase. Here we used single-particle EM to directly image a Saccharomyces cerevisiae replisome. Contrary to expectations, the leading strand Pol ε is positioned ahead of CMG helicase, whereas Ctf4 and the lagging-strand polymerase (Pol) α–primase are behind the helicase. This unexpected architecture indicates that the leading-strand DNA travels a long distance before reaching Pol ε, first threading through the Mcm2–7 ring and then making a U-turn at the bottom and reaching Pol ε at the top of CMG. Lastly, our work reveals an unexpected configuration of the eukaryotic replisome, suggests possible reasons for this architecture and provides a basis for further structural and biochemical replisome studies.

  10. Deadenylation and its regulation in eukaryotic cells.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xiaokan; Kleiman, Frida E; Devany, Emral

    2014-01-01

    Messenger RNA deadenylation is a process that allows rapid regulation of gene expression in response to different cellular conditions. The change of the mRNA poly(A) tail length by the activation of deadenylation might regulate gene expression by affecting mRNA stability, mRNA transport, or translation initiation. Activation of deadenylation processes are highly regulated and associated with different cellular conditions such as cancer, development, mRNA surveillance, DNA damage response, and cell differentiation. In the last few years, new technologies for studying deadenylation have been developed. Here we overview concepts related to deadenylation and its regulation in eukaryotic cells. We also describe some of the most commonly used protocols to study deadenylation in eukaryotic cells.

  11. The Architecture of a Eukaryotic Replisome

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Jingchuan; Shi, Yi; Georgescu, Roxana E.; Yuan, Zuanning; Chait, Brian T.; Li, Huilin; O’Donnell, Michael E.

    2015-01-01

    At the eukaryotic DNA replication fork, it is widely believed that the Cdc45-Mcm2-7-GINS (CMG) helicase leads the way in front to unwind DNA, and that DNA polymerases (Pol) trail behind the helicase. Here we use single particle electron microscopy to directly image a replisome. Contrary to expectations, the leading strand Pol ε is positioned ahead of CMG helicase, while Ctf4 and the lagging strand Pol α-primase (Pol α) are behind the helicase. This unexpected architecture indicates that the leading strand DNA travels a long distance before reaching Pol ε, it first threads through the Mcm2-7 ring, then makes a U-turn at the bottom to reach Pol ε at the top of CMG. Our work reveals an unexpected configuration of the eukaryotic replisome, suggests possible reasons for this architecture, and provides a basis for further structural and biochemical replisome studies. PMID:26524492

  12. Immunodetection of Murine Lymphotoxins in Eukaryotic Cells.

    PubMed

    Boitchenko, Veronika E.; Korobko, Vyacheslav G.; Prassolov, Vladimir S.; Kravchenko, Vladimir V.; Kuimov, Alexander N.; Turetskaya, Regina L.; Kuprash, Dmitry V.; Nedospasov, Sergei A.

    2000-10-01

    Lymphotoxins alpha and beta (LTalpha and LTbeta) are members of tumor necrosis factor superfamily. LT heterotrimers exist on the surface of lymphocytes and signal through LTbeta receptor while soluble LTalpha homotrimer can signal through TNF receptors p55 and p75. LT-, as well as TNF-mediated signaling are important for the organogenesis and maintenance of microarchitecture of secondary lymphoid organs in mice and has been implicated in the mechanism of certain inflammatory syndromes in humans. In this study we describe the generation of eukaryotic expression plasmids encoding murine LTalpha and LTbeta genes and a prokaryotic expression construct for murine LTalpha. Using recombinant proteins expressed by these vectors as tools for antisera selection, we produced and characterized several polyclonal antibodies capable of detecting LT proteins in eukaryotic cells.

  13. The voyage of the microbial eukaryote.

    PubMed

    Worden, Alexandra Z; Allen, Andrew E

    2010-10-01

    Although genome data from unicellular marine eukaryotes is sparse, sequences from several supergroups have initiated an era of genome-enabled research aimed at understanding gene function, evolution, and adaptation in non-traditional model protists. Trends in genomic content within and between different lineages are emerging, including phylogenetically anomalous patterns, sometimes resulting from horizontal gene transfer. Some such genes have nutrient uptake and metabolism roles suggesting that bacterial and eukaryotic microbes have similar cellular-mineral-environmental constraints. Many 'accessory genome' components are of unknown function, but low gene copy numbers combined with small genomes make protists ideal for systems biology. Cultured and uncultured protists are providing insights to ecology, ancestral features and the role of cooption in development of complex traits. Various protists harbor features important in sexuality and multicellularity once believed to have originated in metazoans or other multicellular taxa.

  14. The Iron Metallome in Eukaryotic Organisms

    PubMed Central

    Dlouhy, Adrienne C.; Outten, Caryn E.

    2013-01-01

    This chapter is focused on the iron metallome in eukaryotes at the cellular and subcellular level, including properties, utilization in metalloproteins, trafficking, storage, and regulation of these processes. Studies in the model eukaryote Saccharomyces cerevisiae and mammalian cells will be highlighted. The discussion of iron properties will center on the speciation and localization of intracellular iron as well as the cellular and molecular mechanisms for coping with both low iron bioavailability and iron toxicity. The section on iron metalloproteins will emphasize heme, iron-sulfur cluster, and non-heme iron centers, particularly their cellular roles and mechanisms of assembly. The section on iron uptake, trafficking, and storage will compare methods used by yeast and mammalian cells to import iron, how this iron is brought into various organelles, and types of iron storage proteins. Regulation of these processes will be compared between yeast and mammalian cells at the transcriptional, post-transcriptional, and post-translational levels. PMID:23595675

  15. Arsenic and antimony transporters in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Maciaszczyk-Dziubinska, Ewa; Wawrzycka, Donata; Wysocki, Robert

    2012-01-01

    Arsenic and antimony are toxic metalloids, naturally present in the environment and all organisms have developed pathways for their detoxification. The most effective metalloid tolerance systems in eukaryotes include downregulation of metalloid uptake, efflux out of the cell, and complexation with phytochelatin or glutathione followed by sequestration into the vacuole. Understanding of arsenic and antimony transport system is of high importance due to the increasing usage of arsenic-based drugs in the treatment of certain types of cancer and diseases caused by protozoan parasites as well as for the development of bio- and phytoremediation strategies for metalloid polluted areas. However, in contrast to prokaryotes, the knowledge about specific transporters of arsenic and antimony and the mechanisms of metalloid transport in eukaryotes has been very limited for a long time. Here, we review the recent advances in understanding of arsenic and antimony transport pathways in eukaryotes, including a dual role of aquaglyceroporins in uptake and efflux of metalloids, elucidation of arsenic transport mechanism by the yeast Acr3 transporter and its role in arsenic hyperaccumulation in ferns, identification of vacuolar transporters of arsenic-phytochelatin complexes in plants and forms of arsenic substrates recognized by mammalian ABC transporters.

  16. Single-cell transcriptomics for microbial eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Kolisko, Martin; Boscaro, Vittorio; Burki, Fabien; Lynn, Denis H; Keeling, Patrick J

    2014-11-17

    One of the greatest hindrances to a comprehensive understanding of microbial genomics, cell biology, ecology, and evolution is that most microbial life is not in culture. Solutions to this problem have mainly focused on whole-community surveys like metagenomics, but these analyses inevitably loose information and present particular challenges for eukaryotes, which are relatively rare and possess large, gene-sparse genomes. Single-cell analyses present an alternative solution that allows for specific species to be targeted, while retaining information on cellular identity, morphology, and partitioning of activities within microbial communities. Single-cell transcriptomics, pioneered in medical research, offers particular potential advantages for uncultivated eukaryotes, but the efficiency and biases have not been tested. Here we describe a simple and reproducible method for single-cell transcriptomics using manually isolated cells from five model ciliate species; we examine impacts of amplification bias and contamination, and compare the efficacy of gene discovery to traditional culture-based transcriptomics. Gene discovery using single-cell transcriptomes was found to be comparable to mass-culture methods, suggesting single-cell transcriptomics is an efficient entry point into genomic data from the vast majority of eukaryotic biodiversity.

  17. Arsenic and Antimony Transporters in Eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Maciaszczyk-Dziubinska, Ewa; Wawrzycka, Donata; Wysocki, Robert

    2012-01-01

    Arsenic and antimony are toxic metalloids, naturally present in the environment and all organisms have developed pathways for their detoxification. The most effective metalloid tolerance systems in eukaryotes include downregulation of metalloid uptake, efflux out of the cell, and complexation with phytochelatin or glutathione followed by sequestration into the vacuole. Understanding of arsenic and antimony transport system is of high importance due to the increasing usage of arsenic-based drugs in the treatment of certain types of cancer and diseases caused by protozoan parasites as well as for the development of bio- and phytoremediation strategies for metalloid polluted areas. However, in contrast to prokaryotes, the knowledge about specific transporters of arsenic and antimony and the mechanisms of metalloid transport in eukaryotes has been very limited for a long time. Here, we review the recent advances in understanding of arsenic and antimony transport pathways in eukaryotes, including a dual role of aquaglyceroporins in uptake and efflux of metalloids, elucidation of arsenic transport mechanism by the yeast Acr3 transporter and its role in arsenic hyperaccumulation in ferns, identification of vacuolar transporters of arsenic-phytochelatin complexes in plants and forms of arsenic substrates recognized by mammalian ABC transporters. PMID:22489166

  18. Evolutionary origins of metabolic compartmentalization in eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Martin, William

    2010-01-01

    Many genes in eukaryotes are acquisitions from the free-living antecedents of chloroplasts and mitochondria. But there is no evolutionary ‘homing device’ that automatically directs the protein product of a transferred gene back to the organelle of its provenance. Instead, the products of genes acquired from endosymbionts can explore all targeting possibilities within the cell. They often replace pre-existing host genes, or even whole pathways. But the transfer of an enzymatic pathway from one compartment to another poses severe problems: over evolutionary time, the enzymes of the pathway acquire their targeting signals for the new compartment individually, not in unison. Until the whole pathway is established in the new compartment, newly routed individual enzymes are useless, and their genes will be lost through mutation. Here it is suggested that pathways attain novel compartmentation variants via a ‘minor mistargeting’ mechanism. If protein targeting in eukaryotic cells possesses enough imperfection such that small amounts of entire pathways continuously enter novel compartments, selectable units of biochemical function would exist in new compartments, and the genes could become selected. Dual-targeting of proteins is indeed very common within eukaryotic cells, suggesting that targeting variation required for this minor mistargeting mechanism to operate exists in nature. PMID:20124349

  19. Earth's earliest non-marine eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Strother, Paul K; Battison, Leila; Brasier, Martin D; Wellman, Charles H

    2011-05-26

    The existence of a terrestrial Precambrian (more than 542 Myr ago) biota has been largely inferred from indirect chemical and geological evidence associated with palaeosols, the weathering of clay minerals and microbially induced sedimentary structures in siliciclastic sediments. Direct evidence of fossils within rocks of non-marine origin in the Precambrian is exceedingly rare. The most widely cited example comprises a single report of morphologically simple mineralized tubes and spheres interpreted as cyanobacteria, obtained from 1,200-Myr-old palaeokarst in Arizona. Organic-walled microfossils were first described from the non-marine Torridonian (1.2-1.0 Gyr ago) sequence of northwest Scotland in 1907. Subsequent studies found few distinctive taxa-a century later, the Torridonian microflora is still being characterized as primarily nondescript "leiospheres". We have comprehensively sampled grey shales and phosphatic nodules throughout the Torridonian sequence. Here we report the recovery of large populations of diverse organic-walled microfossils extracted by acid maceration, complemented by studies using thin sections of phosphatic nodules that yield exceptionally detailed three-dimensional preservation. These assemblages contain multicellular structures, complex-walled cysts, asymmetric organic structures, and dorsiventral, compressed organic thalli, some approaching one millimetre in diameter. They offer direct evidence of eukaryotes living in freshwater aquatic and subaerially exposed habitats during the Proterozoic era. The apparent dominance of eukaryotes in non-marine settings by 1 Gyr ago indicates that eukaryotic evolution on land may have commenced far earlier than previously thought.

  20. Distribution and phylogeny of Penelope-like elements in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Arkhipova, Irina R

    2006-12-01

    Penelope-like elements (PLEs) are a relatively little studied class of eukaryotic retroelements, distinguished by the presence of the GIY-YIG endonuclease domain, the ability of some representatives to retain introns, and the similarity of PLE-encoded reverse transcriptases to telomerases. Although these retrotransposons are abundant in many animal genomes, the reverse transcriptase moiety can also be found in several protists, fungi, and plants, indicating its ancient origin. A comprehensive phylogenetic analysis of PLEs was conducted, based on extended sequence alignments and a considerably expanded data set. PLEs exhibit the pattern of evolution similar to that of non-LTR retrotransposons, which form deep-branching clades dating back to the Precambrian era. However, PLEs seem to have experienced a much higher degree of lineage losses than non-LTR retrotransposons. It is suggested that PLEs and non-LTR retrotransposons are included into a larger eTPRT (eukaryotic target-primed) group of retroelements, characterized by 5' truncation, variable target-site duplication, and the potential of the 3' end to participate in formation of non-autonomous derivatives.

  1. [The origin of the eukaryotic cell. IV. The general hypothesis of the autogenous origin of eukaryotes].

    PubMed

    Seravin, L N

    1986-09-01

    The general hypothesis of autogenous (non-symbiotic) origin of the eukaryotic cell summarises some hypotheses explaining possible ways of the origin of main components and organelles of such a cell (the primary unicellular protist). Six hypothesises are suggested. Arising of the eukaryotic surface membrane of protist (cell) as a result of modification of its lipidoacidic composition, when most of synblocks and ensembles of eukaryotic enzymes sink into the cytoplasm (due to membrane vesiculation). Establishment of eukaryotic cytoplasm on the basis of successive formation of two locomotory-supporting apparates: the primary one (microtrabecular system), and the second one (cytoskeleton). Arising of the nucleus from a polyheteronomous nucleoid of proeukaryotes. A combinatorical hypothesis of mitosis formation. Polyheteronucleoid hypothesis of the origin of the mitochondria and chloroplasts. Arising of the flagellum from the contractile tentacle-like organelle, whose axoneme is made of single microtubules. A close interrelation and interaction in the process of evolution is noted between surface membranes, the cytoplasm and the nucleus. In accord a principles of block-construction and heterochrony (see: Seravin, 1986r), the author explains the preservation of prokaryotic signs of organization in some components (and organelles) of eukaryotic cell (and protists).

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

    PubMed

    Huang, Jinling

    2013-10-01

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

  3. An epigenetic toolkit allows for diverse genome architectures in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Maurer-Alcalá, Xyrus X; Katz, Laura A

    2015-12-01

    Genome architecture varies considerably among eukaryotes in terms of both size and structure (e.g. distribution of sequences within the genome, elimination of DNA during formation of somatic nuclei). The diversity in eukaryotic genome architectures and the dynamic processes are only possible due to the well-developed epigenetic toolkit, which probably existed in the Last Eukaryotic Common Ancestor (LECA). This toolkit may have arisen as a means of navigating the genomic conflict that arose from the expansion of transposable elements within the ancestral eukaryotic genome. This toolkit has been coopted to support the dynamic nature of genomes in lineages across the eukaryotic tree of life. Here we highlight how the changes in genome architecture in diverse eukaryotes are regulated by epigenetic processes, such as DNA elimination, genome rearrangements, and adaptive changes to genome architecture. The ability to epigenetically modify and regulate genomes has contributed greatly to the diversity of eukaryotes observed today.

  4. Complex archaea that bridge the gap between prokaryotes and eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Spang, Anja; Saw, Jimmy H; Jørgensen, Steffen L; Zaremba-Niedzwiedzka, Katarzyna; Martijn, Joran; Lind, Anders E; van Eijk, Roel; Schleper, Christa; Guy, Lionel; Ettema, Thijs J G

    2015-05-14

    The origin of the eukaryotic cell remains one of the most contentious puzzles in modern biology. Recent studies have provided support for the emergence of the eukaryotic host cell from within the archaeal domain of life, but the identity and nature of the putative archaeal ancestor remain a subject of debate. Here we describe the discovery of 'Lokiarchaeota', a novel candidate archaeal phylum, which forms a monophyletic group with eukaryotes in phylogenomic analyses, and whose genomes encode an expanded repertoire of eukaryotic signature proteins that are suggestive of sophisticated membrane remodelling capabilities. Our results provide strong support for hypotheses in which the eukaryotic host evolved from a bona fide archaeon, and demonstrate that many components that underpin eukaryote-specific features were already present in that ancestor. This provided the host with a rich genomic 'starter-kit' to support the increase in the cellular and genomic complexity that is characteristic of eukaryotes.

  5. Complex archaea that bridge the gap between prokaryotes and eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Martijn, Joran; Lind, Anders E.; van Eijk, Roel; Schleper, Christa; Guy, Lionel; Ettema, Thijs J. G.

    2015-01-01

    The origin of the eukaryotic cell remains one of the most contentious puzzles in modern biology. Recent studies have provided support for the emergence of the eukaryotic host cell from within the archaeal domain of life, but the identity and nature of the putative archaeal ancestor remain a subject of debate. Here we describe the discovery of ‘Lokiarchaeota’, a novel candidate archaeal phylum, which forms a monophyletic group with eukaryotes in phylogenomic analyses, and whose genomes encode an expanded repertoire of eukaryotic signature proteins that are suggestive of sophisticated membrane remodelling capabilities. Our results provide strong support for hypotheses in which the eukaryotic host evolved from a bona fide archaeon, and demonstrate that many components that underpin eukaryote-specific features were already present in that ancestor. This provided the host with a rich genomic ‘starter-kit’ to support the increase in the cellular and genomic complexity that is characteristic of eukaryotes. PMID:25945739

  6. Complex archaea that bridge the gap between prokaryotes and eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Spang, Anja; Saw, Jimmy H; Jørgensen, Steffen L; Zaremba-Niedzwiedzka, Katarzyna; Martijn, Joran; Lind, Anders E; van Eijk, Roel; Schleper, Christa; Guy, Lionel; Ettema, Thijs J G

    2015-05-14

    The origin of the eukaryotic cell remains one of the most contentious puzzles in modern biology. Recent studies have provided support for the emergence of the eukaryotic host cell from within the archaeal domain of life, but the identity and nature of the putative archaeal ancestor remain a subject of debate. Here we describe the discovery of 'Lokiarchaeota', a novel candidate archaeal phylum, which forms a monophyletic group with eukaryotes in phylogenomic analyses, and whose genomes encode an expanded repertoire of eukaryotic signature proteins that are suggestive of sophisticated membrane remodelling capabilities. Our results provide strong support for hypotheses in which the eukaryotic host evolved from a bona fide archaeon, and demonstrate that many components that underpin eukaryote-specific features were already present in that ancestor. This provided the host with a rich genomic 'starter-kit' to support the increase in the cellular and genomic complexity that is characteristic of eukaryotes. PMID:25945739

  7. The Tangled Web: Gene Genealogies and the Origin of Eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Katz

    1999-10-01

    Accessing data from the genomes of organisms (individual genes) and analyzing these data using sophisticated alignment and phylogenetic methods led to the expectation that we would be able to paint a clear picture of the evolution of eukaryotes. Previous analyses based on morphology and ultrastructure failed to pinpoint both the sister taxon to eukaryotes and the branching order of eukaryotic lineages. However, the expectation that molecular data would provide resolution has not been met since a growing number of gene genealogies present conflicting hypotheses for the origin and diversification of eukaryotes. Instead of reconstructing a simple bifurcating tree of life, these gene genealogies have generated a complex picture of eukaryotic genomes whereby ancient lateral transfers (of individual genes or perhaps even entire genomes) has tangled the evolutionary history of eukaryotes. Resolution of these conflicting genealogies comes in recognizing that eukaryotes are chimeric, containing genetic information from multiple ancestral lineages.

  8. Faster growth of the major prokaryotic versus eukaryotic CO2 fixers in the oligotrophic ocean.

    PubMed

    Zubkov, Mikhail V

    2014-04-29

    Because maintenance of non-scalable cellular components--membranes and chromosomes--requires an increasing fraction of energy as cell size decreases, miniaturization comes at a considerable energetic cost for a phytoplanktonic cell. Consequently, if eukaryotes can use their superior energetic resources to acquire nutrients with more or even similar efficiency compared with prokaryotes, larger unicellular eukaryotes should be able to achieve higher growth rates than smaller cyanobacteria. Here, to test this hypothesis, we directly compare the intrinsic growth rates of phototrophic prokaryotes and eukaryotes from the equatorial to temperate South Atlantic using an original flow cytometric (14)CO2-tracer approach. At the ocean basin scale, cyanobacteria double their biomass twice as frequently as the picoeukaryotes indicating that the prokaryotes are faster growing CO2 fixers, better adapted to phototrophic living in the oligotrophic open ocean-the most extensive biome on Earth.

  9. Faster growth of the major prokaryotic versus eukaryotic CO2 fixers in the oligotrophic ocean

    PubMed Central

    Zubkov, Mikhail V.

    2014-01-01

    Because maintenance of non-scalable cellular components—membranes and chromosomes—requires an increasing fraction of energy as cell size decreases, miniaturization comes at a considerable energetic cost for a phytoplanktonic cell. Consequently, if eukaryotes can use their superior energetic resources to acquire nutrients with more or even similar efficiency compared with prokaryotes, larger unicellular eukaryotes should be able to achieve higher growth rates than smaller cyanobacteria. Here, to test this hypothesis, we directly compare the intrinsic growth rates of phototrophic prokaryotes and eukaryotes from the equatorial to temperate South Atlantic using an original flow cytometric 14CO2-tracer approach. At the ocean basin scale, cyanobacteria double their biomass twice as frequently as the picoeukaryotes indicating that the prokaryotes are faster growing CO2 fixers, better adapted to phototrophic living in the oligotrophic open ocean—the most extensive biome on Earth. PMID:24777140

  10. Molecular Identification of Soil Eukaryotes and Focused Approaches Targeting Protist and Faunal Groups Using High-Throughput Metabarcoding.

    PubMed

    Arjen de Groot, G; Laros, Ivo; Geisen, Stefan

    2016-01-01

    While until recently the application of high-throughput sequencing approaches has mostly been restricted to bacteria and fungi, these methods have now also become available to less often studied (eukaryotic) groups, such as fauna and protists. Such approaches allow routine diversity screening for large numbers of samples via DNA metabarcoding. Given the enormous taxonomic diversity within the eukaryote tree of life, metabarcoding approaches targeting a single specific DNA region do not allow to discriminate members of all eukaryote clades at high taxonomic resolution. Here, we report on protocols that enable studying the diversity of soil eukaryotes and, at high taxonomic resolution, of individual faunal and protist groups therein using a tiered approach: first, the use of a general eukaryotic primer set targeting a wide range of eukaryotes provides a rough impression on the entire diversity of protists and faunal groups. Second, more focused approaches enable deciphering subsets of soil eukaryotes in higher taxonomic detail. We provide primers and protocols for two examples: soil microarthropods and cercozoan protists.

  11. Prokaryotes Versus Eukaryotes: Who is Hosting Whom?

    PubMed Central

    Tellez, Guillermo

    2014-01-01

    Microorganisms represent the largest component of biodiversity in our world. For millions of years, prokaryotic microorganisms have functioned as a major selective force shaping eukaryotic evolution. Microbes that live inside and on animals outnumber the animals’ actual somatic and germ cells by an estimated 10-fold. Collectively, the intestinal microbiome represents a “forgotten organ,” functioning as an organ inside another that can execute many physiological responsibilities. The nature of primitive eukaryotes was drastically changed due to the association with symbiotic prokaryotes facilitating mutual coevolution of host and microbe. Phytophagous insects have long been used to test theories of evolutionary diversification; moreover, the diversification of a number of phytophagous insect lineages has been linked to mutualisms with microbes. From termites and honey bees to ruminants and mammals, depending on novel biochemistries provided by the prokaryotic microbiome, the association helps to metabolize several nutrients that the host cannot digest and converting these into useful end products (such as short-chain fatty acids), a process, which has huge impact on the biology and homeostasis of metazoans. More importantly, in a direct and/or indirect way, the intestinal microbiota influences the assembly of gut-associated lymphoid tissue, helps to educate immune system, affects the integrity of the intestinal mucosal barrier, modulates proliferation and differentiation of its epithelial lineages, regulates angiogenesis, and modifies the activity of enteric as well as the central nervous system. Despite these important effects, the mechanisms by which the gut microbial community influences the host’s biology remain almost entirely unknown. Our aim here is to encourage empirical inquiry into the relationship between mutualism and evolutionary diversification between prokaryotes and eukaryotes, which encourage us to postulate: who is hosting whom? PMID

  12. Earth's earliest non-marine eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Strother, Paul K; Battison, Leila; Brasier, Martin D; Wellman, Charles H

    2011-05-26

    The existence of a terrestrial Precambrian (more than 542 Myr ago) biota has been largely inferred from indirect chemical and geological evidence associated with palaeosols, the weathering of clay minerals and microbially induced sedimentary structures in siliciclastic sediments. Direct evidence of fossils within rocks of non-marine origin in the Precambrian is exceedingly rare. The most widely cited example comprises a single report of morphologically simple mineralized tubes and spheres interpreted as cyanobacteria, obtained from 1,200-Myr-old palaeokarst in Arizona. Organic-walled microfossils were first described from the non-marine Torridonian (1.2-1.0 Gyr ago) sequence of northwest Scotland in 1907. Subsequent studies found few distinctive taxa-a century later, the Torridonian microflora is still being characterized as primarily nondescript "leiospheres". We have comprehensively sampled grey shales and phosphatic nodules throughout the Torridonian sequence. Here we report the recovery of large populations of diverse organic-walled microfossils extracted by acid maceration, complemented by studies using thin sections of phosphatic nodules that yield exceptionally detailed three-dimensional preservation. These assemblages contain multicellular structures, complex-walled cysts, asymmetric organic structures, and dorsiventral, compressed organic thalli, some approaching one millimetre in diameter. They offer direct evidence of eukaryotes living in freshwater aquatic and subaerially exposed habitats during the Proterozoic era. The apparent dominance of eukaryotes in non-marine settings by 1 Gyr ago indicates that eukaryotic evolution on land may have commenced far earlier than previously thought. PMID:21490597

  13. Synchronization of eukaryotic cells by periodic forcing.

    PubMed

    Battogtokh, Dorjsuren; Aihara, Kazuyuki; Tyson, John J

    2006-04-14

    We study a cell population described by a minimal mathematical model of the eukaryotic cell cycle subject to periodic forcing that simultaneously perturbs the dynamics of the cell cycle engine and cell growth, and we show that the population can be synchronized in a mode-locked regime. By simplifying the model to two variables, for the phase of cell cycle progression and the mass of the cell, we calculate the Lyapunov exponents to obtain the parameter window for synchronization. We also discuss the effects of intrinsic mitotic fluctuations, asymmetric division, and weak mutual coupling on the pace of synchronization. PMID:16712125

  14. Glycan variation and evolution in the eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Corfield, Anthony P; Berry, Monica

    2015-07-01

    In this review, we document the evolution of common glycan structures in the eukaryotes, and illustrate the considerable variety of oligosaccharides existing in these organisms. We focus on the families of N- and O-glycans, glycosphingolipids, glycosaminoglycans, glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI) anchors, sialic acids (Sias), and cytoplasmic and nuclear glycans. We also outline similar and divergent aspects of the glycans during evolution within the groups, which include inter- and intraspecies differences, molecular mimicry, viral glycosylation adaptations, glycosyltransferase specificity relating to function, and the natural dynamism powering these events. Finally, we present an overview of the patterns of glycosylation found within the groups comprising the Eukaryota, namely the Deuterostomia, Fungi, Viridiplantae, Nematoda, and Arthropoda.

  15. Expression of eukaryotic polypeptides in chloroplasts

    DOEpatents

    Mayfield, Stephen P.

    2013-06-04

    The present invention relates to a gene expression system in eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells, preferably plant cells and intact plants. In particular, the invention relates to an expression system having a RB47 binding site upstream of a translation initiation site for regulation of translation mediated by binding of RB47 protein, a member of the poly(A) binding protein family. Regulation is further effected by RB60, a protein disulfide isomerase. The expression system is capable of functioning in the nuclear/cytoplasm of cells and in the chloroplast of plants. Translation regulation of a desired molecule is enhanced approximately 100 fold over that obtained without RB47 binding site activation.

  16. Polyamines in Eukaryotes, Bacteria, and Archaea.

    PubMed

    Michael, Anthony J

    2016-07-15

    Polyamines are primordial polycations found in most cells and perform different functions in different organisms. Although polyamines are mainly known for their essential roles in cell growth and proliferation, their functions range from a critical role in cellular translation in eukaryotes and archaea, to bacterial biofilm formation and specialized roles in natural product biosynthesis. At first glance, the diversity of polyamine structures in different organisms appears chaotic; however, biosynthetic flexibility and evolutionary and ecological processes largely explain this heterogeneity. In this review, I discuss the biosynthetic, evolutionary, and physiological processes that constrain or expand polyamine structural and functional diversity.

  17. Full transcription of the chloroplast genome in photosynthetic eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Shi, Chao; Wang, Shuo; Xia, En-Hua; Jiang, Jian-Jun; Zeng, Fan-Chun; Gao, Li-Zhi

    2016-01-01

    Prokaryotes possess a simple genome transcription system that is different from that of eukaryotes. In chloroplasts (plastids), it is believed that the prokaryotic gene transcription features govern genome transcription. However, the polycistronic operon transcription model cannot account for all the chloroplast genome (plastome) transcription products at whole-genome level, especially regarding various RNA isoforms. By systematically analyzing transcriptomes of plastids of algae and higher plants, and cyanobacteria, we find that the entire plastome is transcribed in photosynthetic green plants, and that this pattern originated from prokaryotic cyanobacteria — ancestor of the chloroplast genomes that diverged about 1 billion years ago. We propose a multiple arrangement transcription model that multiple transcription initiations and terminations combine haphazardly to accomplish the genome transcription followed by subsequent RNA processing events, which explains the full chloroplast genome transcription phenomenon and numerous functional and/or aberrant pre-RNAs. Our findings indicate a complex prokaryotic genome regulation when processing primary transcripts. PMID:27456469

  18. Full transcription of the chloroplast genome in photosynthetic eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Shi, Chao; Wang, Shuo; Xia, En-Hua; Jiang, Jian-Jun; Zeng, Fan-Chun; Gao, Li-Zhi

    2016-01-01

    Prokaryotes possess a simple genome transcription system that is different from that of eukaryotes. In chloroplasts (plastids), it is believed that the prokaryotic gene transcription features govern genome transcription. However, the polycistronic operon transcription model cannot account for all the chloroplast genome (plastome) transcription products at whole-genome level, especially regarding various RNA isoforms. By systematically analyzing transcriptomes of plastids of algae and higher plants, and cyanobacteria, we find that the entire plastome is transcribed in photosynthetic green plants, and that this pattern originated from prokaryotic cyanobacteria - ancestor of the chloroplast genomes that diverged about 1 billion years ago. We propose a multiple arrangement transcription model that multiple transcription initiations and terminations combine haphazardly to accomplish the genome transcription followed by subsequent RNA processing events, which explains the full chloroplast genome transcription phenomenon and numerous functional and/or aberrant pre-RNAs. Our findings indicate a complex prokaryotic genome regulation when processing primary transcripts. PMID:27456469

  19. An Inordinate Fondness for Eukaryotic Diversity

    PubMed Central

    Harmon, Luke J.

    2012-01-01

    Why do some groups of organisms, like beetles, have so many species, and others, like the tuataras, so few? This classic question in evolutionary biology has a deep history and has been studied using both fossils and phylogenetic trees. Phylogeny-based studies have focused on tree balance, which compares the number of species across clades of the same age in the tree. These studies have suggested that rates of speciation and extinction vary tremendously across the tree of life. In this issue, Rabosky et al. report the most ambitious study to date on the differences in species diversity across clades in the tree of life. The authors bring together a tremendously large dataset of multicellular eukaryotes, including all living species of plants, animals, and fungi; they divide these organisms into 1,397 clades, accounting for more than 1.2 million species in total. Rabosky et al. find tremendous variation in diversity across the tree of life. There are old clades with few species, young clades with many species, and everything in between. They also note a peculiar aspect of their data: it is difficult or impossible to predict how many species will be found in a particular clade knowing how long a clade has been diversifying from a common ancestor. This pattern suggests complex dynamics of speciation and extinction in the history of eukaryotes. Rabosky et al.'s paper represents the latest development in our efforts to understand the Earth's biodiversity at the broadest scales. PMID:22952431

  20. Extremophilic Eukaryote Life in Hawaiian Fumaroles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ackerman, C.; Anderson, S.; Anderson, C.

    2008-12-01

    Extremophilic microorganisms exist in all three domains of life (Eukarya, Archaea, Bacteria), but are less known in eukaryotes. Fumaroles provide heat and moisture characteristic of an environment suitable for these organisms. On the Island of Hawaii, fumaroles are scattered across the southeastern portion of the island as a result of the volcanic activity from Kilauea Crater and Pu'u' O'o vent with all forming within geochemically similar basalt substrates. We used metagenomics to detect 18S rDNA from eukaryotic extremophilic microorganisms indicating their presence in Hawaiian fumaroles. To determine the effects of environmental gradients (temperature and pH) on microbial diversity within and among fumaroles, 11 samples from 3 fumaroles were collected over a three-day period in February of 2007. Temperatures of the different fumaroles range from 31.0oC to 62.7oC, with pH values that vary from 2.55 to 6.93 allowing for 8 different microenvironments. Fifty sequences per sample were analyzed with eighteen different organisms identified, the majority belonging to the family Cercozoa. The most diverse fumarole consisted of 8 different genera residing in a temperature of 34.1oC and a pH of 3.0. Unclassified mosses were identified in the fumarole with the highest temperature and Phaeoceros (hornworts) were identified at the most acidic fumarole. Both of these groups have been previously identified in geothermal areas.

  1. The architecture of a eukaryotic replisome

    DOE PAGES

    Sun, Jingchuan; Yuan, Zuanning; Shi, Yi; Georgescu, Roxana E.; Chait, Brian T.; Li, Huilin; O'Donnell, Michael E.

    2015-11-02

    At the eukaryotic DNA replication fork, it is widely believed that the Cdc45–Mcm2–7–GINS (CMG) helicase is positioned in front to unwind DNA and that DNA polymerases trail behind the helicase. Here we used single-particle EM to directly image a Saccharomyces cerevisiae replisome. Contrary to expectations, the leading strand Pol ε is positioned ahead of CMG helicase, whereas Ctf4 and the lagging-strand polymerase (Pol) α–primase are behind the helicase. This unexpected architecture indicates that the leading-strand DNA travels a long distance before reaching Pol ε, first threading through the Mcm2–7 ring and then making a U-turn at the bottom and reachingmore » Pol ε at the top of CMG. Lastly, our work reveals an unexpected configuration of the eukaryotic replisome, suggests possible reasons for this architecture and provides a basis for further structural and biochemical replisome studies.« less

  2. The scanning mechanism of eukaryotic translation initiation.

    PubMed

    Hinnebusch, Alan G

    2014-01-01

    In eukaryotes, the translation initiation codon is generally identified by the scanning mechanism, wherein every triplet in the messenger RNA leader is inspected for complementarity to the anticodon of methionyl initiator transfer RNA (Met-tRNAi). Binding of Met-tRNAi to the small (40S) ribosomal subunit, in a ternary complex (TC) with eIF2-GTP, is stimulated by eukaryotic initiation factor 1 (eIF1), eIF1A, eIF3, and eIF5, and the resulting preinitiation complex (PIC) joins the 5' end of mRNA preactivated by eIF4F and poly(A)-binding protein. RNA helicases remove secondary structures that impede ribosome attachment and subsequent scanning. Hydrolysis of eIF2-bound GTP is stimulated by eIF5 in the scanning PIC, but completion of the reaction is impeded at non-AUG triplets. Although eIF1 and eIF1A promote scanning, eIF1 and possibly the C-terminal tail of eIF1A must be displaced from the P decoding site to permit base-pairing between Met-tRNAi and the AUG codon, as well as to allow subsequent phosphate release from eIF2-GDP. A second GTPase, eIF5B, catalyzes the joining of the 60S subunit to produce an 80S initiation complex that is competent for elongation.

  3. RNA Export through the NPC in Eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Okamura, Masumi; Inose, Haruko; Masuda, Seiji

    2015-01-01

    In eukaryotic cells, RNAs are transcribed in the nucleus and exported to the cytoplasm through the nuclear pore complex. The RNA molecules that are exported from the nucleus into the cytoplasm include messenger RNAs (mRNAs), ribosomal RNAs (rRNAs), transfer RNAs (tRNAs), small nuclear RNAs (snRNAs), micro RNAs (miRNAs), and viral mRNAs. Each RNA is transported by a specific nuclear export receptor. It is believed that most of the mRNAs are exported by Nxf1 (Mex67 in yeast), whereas rRNAs, snRNAs, and a certain subset of mRNAs are exported in a Crm1/Xpo1-dependent manner. tRNAs and miRNAs are exported by Xpot and Xpo5. However, multiple export receptors are involved in the export of some RNAs, such as 60S ribosomal subunit. In addition to these export receptors, some adapter proteins are required to export RNAs. The RNA export system of eukaryotic cells is also used by several types of RNA virus that depend on the machineries of the host cell in the nucleus for replication of their genome, therefore this review describes the RNA export system of two representative viruses. We also discuss the NPC anchoring-dependent mRNA export factors that directly recruit specific genes to the NPC. PMID:25802992

  4. Protein acetylation in archaea, bacteria, and eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Soppa, Jörg

    2010-09-16

    Proteins can be acetylated at the alpha-amino group of the N-terminal amino acid (methionine or the penultimate amino acid after methionine removal) or at the epsilon-amino group of internal lysines. In eukaryotes the majority of proteins are N-terminally acetylated, while this is extremely rare in bacteria. A variety of studies about N-terminal acetylation in archaea have been reported recently, and it was revealed that a considerable fraction of proteins is N-terminally acetylated in haloarchaea and Sulfolobus, while this does not seem to apply for methanogenic archaea. Many eukaryotic proteins are modified by differential internal acetylation, which is important for a variety of processes. Until very recently, only two bacterial proteins were known to be acetylation targets, but now 125 acetylation sites are known for E. coli. Knowledge about internal acetylation in archaea is extremely limited; only two target proteins are known, only one of which--Alba--was used to study differential acetylation. However, indications accumulate that the degree of internal acetylation of archaeal proteins might be underestimated, and differential acetylation has been shown to be essential for the viability of haloarchaea. Focused proteomic approaches are needed to get an overview of the extent of internal protein acetylation in archaea.

  5. Eukaryotic replication origins: Strength in flexibility

    PubMed Central

    Kumar, Charanya; Remus, Dirk

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT The eukaryotic replicative DNA helicase, Mcm2-7, is loaded in inactive form as a double hexameric complex around double-stranded DNA. To ensure that replication origins fire no more than once per S phase, activation of the Mcm2-7 helicase is temporally separated from Mcm2-7 loading in the cell cycle. This 2-step mechanism requires that inactive Mcm2-7 complexes be maintained for variable periods of time in a topologically bound state on chromatin, which may create a steric obstacle to other DNA transactions. We have recently found in the budding yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, that Mcm2-7 double hexamers can respond to collisions with transcription complexes by sliding along the DNA template. Importantly, Mcm2-7 double hexamers remain functional after displacement along DNA and support replication initiation from sites distal to the origin. These results reveal a novel mechanism to specify eukaryotic replication origin sites and to maintain replication origin competence without the need for Mcm2-7 reloading. PMID:27416360

  6. Self-synthesizing DNA transposons in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Kapitonov, Vladimir V; Jurka, Jerzy

    2006-03-21

    Eukaryotes contain numerous transposable or mobile elements capable of parasite-like proliferation in the host genome. All known transposable elements in eukaryotes belong to two types: retrotransposons and DNA transposons. Here we report a previously uncharacterized class of DNA transposons called Polintons that populate genomes of protists, fungi, and animals, including entamoeba, soybean rust, hydra, sea anemone, nematodes, fruit flies, beetle, sea urchin, sea squirt, fish, lizard, frog, and chicken. Polintons from all these species are characterized by a unique set of proteins necessary for their transposition, including a protein-primed DNA polymerase B, retroviral integrase, cysteine protease, and ATPase. In addition, Polintons are characterized by 6-bp target site duplications, terminal-inverted repeats that are several hundred nucleotides long, and 5'-AG and TC-3' termini. Analogously to known transposable elements, Polintons exist as autonomous and nonautonomous elements. Our data suggest that Polintons have evolved from a linear plasmid that acquired a retroviral integrase at least 1 billion years ago. According to the model of Polinton transposition proposed here, a Polinton DNA molecule excised from the genome serves as a template for extrachromosomal synthesis of its double-stranded DNA copy by the Polinton-encoded DNA polymerase and is inserted back into genome by its integrase.

  7. Compositional differences within and between eukaryotic genomes.

    PubMed

    Karlin, S; Mrázek, J

    1997-09-16

    Eukaryotic genome similarity relationships are inferred using sequence information derived from large aggregates of genomic sequences. Comparisons within and between species sample sequences are based on the profile of dinucleotide relative abundance values (The profile is rho*XY = f*XY/f*Xf*Y for all XY, where f*X denotes the frequency of the nucleotide X and f*XY denotes the frequency of the dinucleotide XY, both computed from the sequence concatenated with its inverted complement). Previous studies with respect to prokaryotes and this study document that profiles of different DNA sequence samples (sample size >/=50 kb) from the same organism are generally much more similar to each other than they are to profiles from other organisms, and that closely related organisms generally have more similar profiles than do distantly related organisms. On this basis we refer to the collection (rho*XY) as the genome signature. This paper identifies rho*XY extremes and compares genome signature differences for a diverse range of eukaryotic species. Interpretations on the mechanisms maintaining these profile differences center on genome-wide replication, repair, DNA structures, and context-dependent mutational biases. It is also observed that mitochondrial genome signature differences between species parallel the corresponding nuclear genome signature differences despite large differences between corresponding mitochondrial and nuclear signatures. The genome signature differences also have implications for contrasts between rodents and other mammals, and between monocot and dicot plants, as well as providing evidence for similarities among fungi and the diversity of protists.

  8. Translational control of intron splicing in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Jaillon, Olivier; Bouhouche, Khaled; Gout, Jean-François; Aury, Jean-Marc; Noel, Benjamin; Saudemont, Baptiste; Nowacki, Mariusz; Serrano, Vincent; Porcel, Betina M; Ségurens, Béatrice; Le Mouël, Anne; Lepère, Gersende; Schächter, Vincent; Bétermier, Mireille; Cohen, Jean; Wincker, Patrick; Sperling, Linda; Duret, Laurent; Meyer, Eric

    2008-01-17

    Most eukaryotic genes are interrupted by non-coding introns that must be accurately removed from pre-messenger RNAs to produce translatable mRNAs. Splicing is guided locally by short conserved sequences, but genes typically contain many potential splice sites, and the mechanisms specifying the correct sites remain poorly understood. In most organisms, short introns recognized by the intron definition mechanism cannot be efficiently predicted solely on the basis of sequence motifs. In multicellular eukaryotes, long introns are recognized through exon definition and most genes produce multiple mRNA variants through alternative splicing. The nonsense-mediated mRNA decay (NMD) pathway may further shape the observed sets of variants by selectively degrading those containing premature termination codons, which are frequently produced in mammals. Here we show that the tiny introns of the ciliate Paramecium tetraurelia are under strong selective pressure to cause premature termination of mRNA translation in the event of intron retention, and that the same bias is observed among the short introns of plants, fungi and animals. By knocking down the two P. tetraurelia genes encoding UPF1, a protein that is crucial in NMD, we show that the intrinsic efficiency of splicing varies widely among introns and that NMD activity can significantly reduce the fraction of unspliced mRNAs. The results suggest that, independently of alternative splicing, species with large intron numbers universally rely on NMD to compensate for suboptimal splicing efficiency and accuracy.

  9. Eukaryotic and Prokaryotic Cytoskeletons: Structure and Mechanics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gopinathan, Ajay

    2013-03-01

    The eukaryotic cytoskeleton is an assembly of filamentous proteins and a host of associated proteins that collectively serve functional needs ranging from spatial organization and transport to the production and transmission of forces. These systems can exhibit a wide variety of non-equilibrium, self-assembled phases depending on context and function. While much recent progress has been made in understanding the self-organization, rheology and nonlinear mechanical properties of such active systems, in this talk, we will concentrate on some emerging aspects of cytoskeletal physics that are promising. One such aspect is the influence of cytoskeletal network topology and its dynamics on both active and passive intracellular transport. Another aspect we will highlight is the interplay between chirality of filaments, their elasticity and their interactions with the membrane that can lead to novel conformational states with functional implications. Finally we will consider homologs of cytoskeletal proteins in bacteria, which are involved in templating cell growth, segregating genetic material and force production, which we will discuss with particular reference to contractile forces during cell division. These prokaryotic structures function in remarkably similar yet fascinatingly different ways from their eukaryotic counterparts and can enrich our understanding of cytoskeletal functioning as a whole.

  10. The archaeal legacy of eukaryotes: a phylogenomic perspective.

    PubMed

    Guy, Lionel; Saw, Jimmy H; Ettema, Thijs J G

    2014-07-03

    The origin of the eukaryotic cell can be regarded as one of the hallmarks in the history of life on our planet. The apparent genomic chimerism in eukaryotic genomes is currently best explained by invoking a cellular fusion at the root of the eukaryotes that involves one archaeal and one or more bacterial components. Here, we use a phylogenomics approach to reevaluate the evolutionary affiliation between Archaea and eukaryotes, and provide further support for scenarios in which the nuclear lineage in eukaryotes emerged from within the archaeal radiation, displaying a strong phylogenetic affiliation with, or even within, the archaeal TACK superphylum. Further taxonomic sampling of archaeal genomes in this superphylum will certainly provide a better resolution in the events that have been instrumental for the emergence of the eukaryotic lineage.

  11. The Genome of Naegleria gruberi Illuminates Early Eukaryotic Versatility

    SciTech Connect

    Fritz-Laylin, Lillian K.; Prochnik, Simon E.; Ginger, Michael L.; Dacks, Joel; Carpenter, Meredith L.; Field, Mark C.; Kuo, Alan; Paredez, Alex; Chapman, Jarrod; Pham, Jonathan; Shu, Shengqiang; Neupane, Rochak; Cipriano, Michael; Mancuso, Joel; Tu, Hank; Salamov, Asaf; Lindquist, Erika; Shapiro, Harris; Lucas, Susan; Grigoriev, Igor V.; Cande, W. Zacheus; Fulton, Chandler; Rokhsar, Daniel S.; Dawson, Scott C.

    2010-03-01

    Genome sequences of diverse free-living protists are essential for understanding eukaryotic evolution and molecular and cell biology. The free-living amoeboflagellate Naegleria gruberi belongs to a varied and ubiquitous protist clade (Heterolobosea) that diverged from other eukaryotic lineages over a billion years ago. Analysis of the 15,727 protein-coding genes encoded by Naegleria's 41 Mb nuclear genome indicates a capacity for both aerobic respiration and anaerobic metabolism with concomitant hydrogen production, with fundamental implications for the evolution of organelle metabolism. The Naegleria genome facilitates substantially broader phylogenomic comparisons of free-living eukaryotes than previously possible, allowing us to identify thousands of genes likely present in the pan-eukaryotic ancestor, with 40% likely eukaryotic inventions. Moreover, we construct a comprehensive catalog of amoeboid-motility genes. The Naegleria genome, analyzed in the context of other protists, reveals a remarkably complex ancestral eukaryote with a rich repertoire of cytoskeletal, sexual, signaling, and metabolic modules.

  12. The others: our biased perspective of eukaryotic genomes.

    PubMed

    del Campo, Javier; Sieracki, Michael E; Molestina, Robert; Keeling, Patrick; Massana, Ramon; Ruiz-Trillo, Iñaki

    2014-05-01

    Understanding the origin and evolution of the eukaryotic cell and the full diversity of eukaryotes is relevant to many biological disciplines. However, our current understanding of eukaryotic genomes is extremely biased, leading to a skewed view of eukaryotic biology. We argue that a phylogeny-driven initiative to cover the full eukaryotic diversity is needed to overcome this bias. We encourage the community: (i) to sequence a representative of the neglected groups available at public culture collections, (ii) to increase our culturing efforts, and (iii) to embrace single cell genomics to access organisms refractory to propagation in culture. We hope that the community will welcome this proposal, explore the approaches suggested, and join efforts to sequence the full diversity of eukaryotes.

  13. The genome of Naegleria gruberi illuminates early eukaryotic versatility.

    PubMed

    Fritz-Laylin, Lillian K; Prochnik, Simon E; Ginger, Michael L; Dacks, Joel B; Carpenter, Meredith L; Field, Mark C; Kuo, Alan; Paredez, Alex; Chapman, Jarrod; Pham, Jonathan; Shu, Shengqiang; Neupane, Rochak; Cipriano, Michael; Mancuso, Joel; Tu, Hank; Salamov, Asaf; Lindquist, Erika; Shapiro, Harris; Lucas, Susan; Grigoriev, Igor V; Cande, W Zacheus; Fulton, Chandler; Rokhsar, Daniel S; Dawson, Scott C

    2010-03-01

    Genome sequences of diverse free-living protists are essential for understanding eukaryotic evolution and molecular and cell biology. The free-living amoeboflagellate Naegleria gruberi belongs to a varied and ubiquitous protist clade (Heterolobosea) that diverged from other eukaryotic lineages over a billion years ago. Analysis of the 15,727 protein-coding genes encoded by Naegleria's 41 Mb nuclear genome indicates a capacity for both aerobic respiration and anaerobic metabolism with concomitant hydrogen production, with fundamental implications for the evolution of organelle metabolism. The Naegleria genome facilitates substantially broader phylogenomic comparisons of free-living eukaryotes than previously possible, allowing us to identify thousands of genes likely present in the pan-eukaryotic ancestor, with 40% likely eukaryotic inventions. Moreover, we construct a comprehensive catalog of amoeboid-motility genes. The Naegleria genome, analyzed in the context of other protists, reveals a remarkably complex ancestral eukaryote with a rich repertoire of cytoskeletal, sexual, signaling, and metabolic modules.

  14. The Archaeal Legacy of Eukaryotes: A Phylogenomic Perspective

    PubMed Central

    Guy, Lionel; Saw, Jimmy H.; Ettema, Thijs J.G.

    2014-01-01

    The origin of the eukaryotic cell can be regarded as one of the hallmarks in the history of life on our planet. The apparent genomic chimerism in eukaryotic genomes is currently best explained by invoking a cellular fusion at the root of the eukaryotes that involves one archaeal and one or more bacterial components. Here, we use a phylogenomics approach to reevaluate the evolutionary affiliation between Archaea and eukaryotes, and provide further support for scenarios in which the nuclear lineage in eukaryotes emerged from within the archaeal radiation, displaying a strong phylogenetic affiliation with, or even within, the archaeal TACK superphylum. Further taxonomic sampling of archaeal genomes in this superphylum will certainly provide a better resolution in the events that have been instrumental for the emergence of the eukaryotic lineage. PMID:24993577

  15. Evolution of microtubule organizing centers across the tree of eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Yubuki, Naoji; Leander, Brian S

    2013-07-01

    The architecture of eukaryotic cells is underpinned by complex arrrays of microtubules that stem from an organizing center, referred to as the MTOC. With few exceptions, MTOCs consist of two basal bodies that anchor flagellar axonemes and different configurations of microtubular roots. Variations in the structure of this cytoskeletal system, also referred to as the 'flagellar apparatus', reflect phylogenetic relationships and provide compelling evidence for inferring the overall tree of eukaryotes. However, reconstructions and subsequent comparisons of the flagellar apparatus are challenging, because these studies require sophisticated microscopy, spatial reasoning and detailed terminology. In an attempt to understand the unifying features of MTOCs and broad patterns of cytoskeletal homology across the tree of eukaryotes, we present a comprehensive overview of the eukaryotic flagellar apparatus within a modern molecular phylogenetic context. Specifically, we used the known cytoskeletal diversity within major groups of eukaryotes to infer the unifying features (ancestral states) for the flagellar apparatus in the Plantae, Opisthokonta, Amoebozoa, Stramenopiles, Alveolata, Rhizaria, Excavata, Cryptophyta, Haptophyta, Apusozoa, Breviata and Collodictyonidae. We then mapped these data onto the tree of eukaryotes in order to trace broad patterns of trait changes during the evolutionary history of the flagellar apparatus. This synthesis suggests that: (i) the most recent ancestor of all eukaryotes already had a complex flagellar apparatus, (ii) homologous traits associated with the flagellar apparatus have a punctate distribution across the tree of eukaryotes, and (iii) streamlining (trait losses) of the ancestral flagellar apparatus occurred several times independently in eukaryotes.

  16. Haloviruses of archaea, bacteria, and eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Atanasova, Nina S; Oksanen, Hanna M; Bamford, Dennis H

    2015-06-01

    Hypersaline environments up to near saturation are rich reservoirs of extremophilic viruses. One milliliter of salt water may contain up to 10(9) viruses which can also be trapped inside salt crystals. To date, most of the ∼100 known halovirus isolates infect extremely halophilic archaea, although a few bacterial and eukaryotic viruses have also been described. These isolates comprise tailed and tailless icosahedral, pleomorphic, and lemon-shaped viruses which have been classified according to features such as host range, genome type, and replication. Recent studies have revealed that viruses can be grouped into a few structure-based viral lineages derived from a common ancestor based on conserved virion architectural principles and the major capsid protein fold.

  17. (Viruses of eukaryotic green algae): Performance report

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1987-01-01

    The primary objective of this research was to develop the Chlorella-PBCV-1 virus system so that it can be used as a model system for studying gene expression in a photosynthetic eukaryote. Discoveries include the finding that morphologically similar, plaque forming, dsDNA containing viruses are common in nature and can be isolated readily from fresh water; the finding that all of these Chlorella viruses contain methylated bases which range in concentration from 0.1% to 47.5% mVdC and 0 to 37% mWdA and the discovery that infection with at least some of these viruses induces the appearance of DNA modification/restriction systems. 18 refs.

  18. Arsenic transport in prokaryotes and eukaryotic microbes.

    PubMed

    Rosen, Barry P; Tamás, Markus J

    2010-01-01

    Aquaporins (AQPs) and aquaglyceroporins facilitate transport of a broad spectrum of substrates such as water, glycerol and other small uncharged solutes. More recently, AQPs ave also been shown to facilitate diffusion of metalloids such as arsenic (As) and antimony (Sb). At neutral pH, the trivalent forms of these metalloids are structurally similar to glycerol and hence they can enter cells through AQPs. As- and Sb-containing compounds are toxic to cells, yet both metalloids are used as chemotherapeutic agents for treating acute promyelocytic leukemia and diseases caused by protozoan parasites. In this chapter, we will review the role of AQPs and other proteins in metalloid transport in prokaryotes and eukaryotic microbes.

  19. Mapping the Landscape of a Eukaryotic Degronome.

    PubMed

    Geffen, Yifat; Appleboim, Alon; Gardner, Richard G; Friedman, Nir; Sadeh, Ronen; Ravid, Tommer

    2016-09-15

    The ubiquitin-proteasome system (UPS) for protein degradation has been under intensive study, and yet, we have only partial understanding of mechanisms by which proteins are selected to be targeted for proteolysis. One of the obstacles in studying these recognition pathways is the limited repertoire of known degradation signals (degrons). To better understand what determines the susceptibility of intracellular proteins to degradation by the UPS, we developed an unbiased method for large-scale identification of eukaryotic degrons. Using a reporter-based high-throughput competition assay, followed by deep sequencing, we measured a degradation potency index for thousands of native polypeptides in a single experiment. We further used this method to identify protein quality control (PQC)-specific and compartment-specific degrons. Our method provides an unprecedented insight into the yeast degronome, and it can readily be modified to study protein degradation signals and pathways in other organisms and in various settings. PMID:27618491

  20. Proteomic analysis of a eukaryotic cilium.

    PubMed

    Pazour, Gregory J; Agrin, Nathan; Leszyk, John; Witman, George B

    2005-07-01

    Cilia and flagella are widespread cell organelles that have been highly conserved throughout evolution and play important roles in motility, sensory perception, and the life cycles of eukaryotes ranging from protists to humans. Despite the ubiquity and importance of these organelles, their composition is not well known. Here we use mass spectrometry to identify proteins in purified flagella from the green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. 360 proteins were identified with high confidence, and 292 more with moderate confidence. 97 out of 101 previously known flagellar proteins were found, indicating that this is a very complete dataset. The flagellar proteome is rich in motor and signal transduction components, and contains numerous proteins with homologues associated with diseases such as cystic kidney disease, male sterility, and hydrocephalus in humans and model vertebrates. The flagellum also contains many proteins that are conserved in humans but have not been previously characterized in any organism. The results indicate that flagella are far more complex than previously estimated.

  1. Eukaryotic DNA methylation as an evolutionary device.

    PubMed

    Colot, V; Rossignol, J L

    1999-05-01

    DNA methylation is catalyzed by a family of conserved DNA methyltransferases and is widespread among protists, plants, fungi and animals. It is however absent in some species and its genomic distribution varies among organisms. Sequence comparisons suggest that known and putative eukaryotic DNA methyltransferases fall into at least five structurally distinct subfamilies. Furthermore, it is now clear that DNA methylation can be involved in several functions, some of which may coexist within the same organism. It can inhibit transcription initiation, arrest transcript elongation, act as an imprinting signal, and suppress homologous recombination. On the basis of these observations, we argue that DNA methylation has been conserved during evolution because it provides unique possibilities for setting up functions of various types.

  2. [Structure and function of the eukaryotic ribosome].

    PubMed

    Bakowska-Zywicka, Kamilla; Twardowski, Tomasz

    2008-01-01

    The protein biosynthesis is a complicated process and not fully understood yet. According to smaller size and less complicated structure, understanding of prokaryotic 70S ribosomes is much more advanced. Eucaryotic 80S ribosomes are more complex and generate more difficulties in research. The morphology of 80S ribosome has been pretty well resolved and we know a lot about mechanism of functioning. Determination of the interactions between the ribosomes and the factors taking part in protein biosynthesis is still a great challenge. Dynamic changes of these interactions during particular steps of elongation cycle are quite difficult to understand. Conformational changes of the ribosome are of great functional and regulatory importance during protein biosynthesis. They are essential for the whole gene expression process. Only further research of the structure and function of the ribosome will lead us to knowledge about specificity of the mechanism of their action. In this article we present current opinions concerning structure and function of the eukaryotic ribosomes.

  3. Metabolic and Nontranscriptional Circadian Clocks: Eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Reddy, Akhilesh B.; Rey, Guillaume

    2016-01-01

    Circadian clocks are cellular timekeeping mechanisms that coordinate behavior and physiology around the 24-h day in most living organisms. Misalignment of an organism’s clock with its environment is associated with long-term adverse fitness consequences, as exemplified by the link between circadian disruption and various age-related diseases in humans. Current eukaryotic models of the circadian oscillator rely on transcription/translation feedback loop mechanisms, supplemented with accessory cytosolic loops that connect them to cellular physiology. However, there is mounting evidence questioning the absolute necessity of transcription-based oscillators for circadian rhythmicity, supported by the recent discovery of oxidation-reduction cycles of peroxiredoxin proteins, which persist even in the absence of transcription. A more fundamental mechanism based on metabolic cycles could thus underlie circadian transcriptional and cytosolic rhythms, thereby promoting circadian oscillations to integral properties of cellular metabolism. PMID:24606143

  4. Soil eukaryotic functional diversity, a metatranscriptomic approach.

    PubMed

    Bailly, Julie; Fraissinet-Tachet, Laurence; Verner, Marie-Christine; Debaud, Jean-Claude; Lemaire, Marc; Wésolowski-Louvel, Micheline; Marmeisse, Roland

    2007-11-01

    To appreciate the functional diversity of communities of soil eukaryotic micro-organisms we evaluated an experimental approach based on the construction and screening of a cDNA library using polyadenylated mRNA extracted from a forest soil. Such a library contains genes that are expressed by each of the different organisms forming the community and represents its metatranscriptome. The diversity of the organisms that contributed to this library was evaluated by sequencing a portion of the 18S rDNA gene amplified from either soil DNA or reverse-transcribed RNA. More than 70% of the sequences were from fungi and unicellular eukaryotes (protists) while the other most represented group was the metazoa. Calculation of richness estimators suggested that more than 180 species could be present in the soil samples studied. Sequencing of 119 cDNA identified genes with no homologues in databases (32%) and genes coding proteins involved in different biochemical and cellular processes. Surprisingly, the taxonomic distribution of the cDNA and of the 18S rDNA genes did not coincide, with a marked under-representation of the protists among the cDNA. Specific genes from such an environmental cDNA library could be isolated by expression in a heterologous microbial host, Saccharomyces cerevisiae. This is illustrated by the functional complementation of a histidine auxotrophic yeast mutant by two cDNA originating possibly from an ascomycete and a basidiomycete fungal species. Study of the metatranscriptome has the potential to uncover adaptations of whole microbial communities to local environmental conditions. It also gives access to an abundant source of genes of biotechnological interest.

  5. Novel Features of Eukaryotic Photosystem II Revealed by Its Crystal Structure Analysis from a Red Alga.

    PubMed

    Ago, Hideo; Adachi, Hideyuki; Umena, Yasufumi; Tashiro, Takayoshi; Kawakami, Keisuke; Kamiya, Nobuo; Tian, Lirong; Han, Guangye; Kuang, Tingyun; Liu, Zheyi; Wang, Fangjun; Zou, Hanfa; Enami, Isao; Miyano, Masashi; Shen, Jian-Ren

    2016-03-11

    Photosystem II (PSII) catalyzes light-induced water splitting, leading to the evolution of molecular oxygen indispensible for life on the earth. The crystal structure of PSII from cyanobacteria has been solved at an atomic level, but the structure of eukaryotic PSII has not been analyzed. Because eukaryotic PSII possesses additional subunits not found in cyanobacterial PSII, it is important to solve the structure of eukaryotic PSII to elucidate their detailed functions, as well as evolutionary relationships. Here we report the structure of PSII from a red alga Cyanidium caldarium at 2.76 Å resolution, which revealed the structure and interaction sites of PsbQ', a unique, fourth extrinsic protein required for stabilizing the oxygen-evolving complex in the lumenal surface of PSII. The PsbQ' subunit was found to be located underneath CP43 in the vicinity of PsbV, and its structure is characterized by a bundle of four up-down helices arranged in a similar way to those of cyanobacterial and higher plant PsbQ, although helices I and II of PsbQ' were kinked relative to its higher plant counterpart because of its interactions with CP43. Furthermore, two novel transmembrane helices were found in the red algal PSII that are not present in cyanobacterial PSII; one of these helices may correspond to PsbW found only in eukaryotic PSII. The present results represent the first crystal structure of PSII from eukaryotic oxygenic organisms, which were discussed in comparison with the structure of cyanobacterial PSII.

  6. Assimilation of upwelled nitrate by small eukaryotes in the Sargasso Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fawcett, Sarah E.; Lomas, Michael W.; Casey, John R.; Ward, Bess B.; Sigman, Daniel M.

    2011-10-01

    Phytoplankton growth is potentially limited by the scarcity of biologically available forms of nitrogen such as nitrate and ammonium. In the subtropical ocean gyres, water column stratification impedes the upward flux of nitrate to surface waters. Phytoplankton in these waters are assumed to rely largely on ammonium and other forms of nitrogen recycled during the breakdown of organic matter. Here, we use flow cytometry to separate prokaryotic and eukaryotic phytoplankton collected from Sargasso Sea surface waters in the summers of 2008 and 2009, and to analyse their respective nitrogen isotope ratios. We show that prokaryotes have a uniformly low ratio of 15N to 14N, δ15N, consistent with their reliance on recycled nitrogen. In contrast, small eukaryotic phytoplankton, less than 30μm in size, have a higher and more variable δ15N, with a mean value similar to that of nitrate in underlying Subtropical Mode Water. For the summertime Sargasso Sea, we estimate that small eukaryotes obtain more than half of their nitrogen from upwelled nitrate. In addition, our data support the view that sinking material derives largely from eukaryotic, not prokaryotic, phytoplankton biomass.

  7. Short-term responses of unicellular planktonic eukaryotes to increases in temperature and UVB radiation

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Small size eukaryotes play a fundamental role in the functioning of coastal ecosystems, however, the way in which these micro-organisms respond to combined effects of water temperature, UVB radiations (UVBR) and nutrient availability is still poorly investigated. Results We coupled molecular tools (18S rRNA gene sequencing and fingerprinting) with microscope-based identification and counting to experimentally investigate the short-term responses of small eukaryotes (<6 μm; from a coastal Mediterranean lagoon) to a warming treatment (+3°C) and UVB radiation increases (+20%) at two different nutrient levels. Interestingly, the increase in temperature resulted in higher pigmented eukaryotes abundances and in community structure changes clearly illustrated by molecular analyses. For most of the phylogenetic groups, some rearrangements occurred at the OTUs level even when their relative proportion (microscope counting) did not change significantly. Temperature explained almost 20% of the total variance of the small eukaryote community structure (while UVB explained only 8.4%). However, complex cumulative effects were detected. Some antagonistic or non additive effects were detected between temperature and nutrients, especially for Dinophyceae and Cryptophyceae. Conclusions This multifactorial experiment highlights the potential impacts, over short time scales, of changing environmental factors on the structure of various functional groups like small primary producers, parasites and saprotrophs which, in response, can modify energy flow in the planktonic food webs. PMID:22966751

  8. Different biogeographic patterns of prokaryotes and microbial eukaryotes in epilithic biofilms.

    PubMed

    Ragon, Marie; Fontaine, Michaël C; Moreira, David; López-García, Purificación

    2012-08-01

    Microbial biogeography studies expend much effort in determining whether environmental selection or stochastic processes related to dispersal are more important in shaping community composition. While both types of factors are possibly influential, it is tacitly assumed that protists, or microbial eukaryotes in general, behave biogeographically as prokaryotes because of their small physical size. However, direct evidence for this in exactly the same environment and at the same phylogenetic depth is lacking. In this study, we compared the structure of both prokaryotic and eukaryotic components of microbial communities forming biofilms on mineral substrates in different geographic locations at the level of small-subunit (SSU) rRNA-based operational taxonomic units (OTUs). These microbial communities are subjected to strong environmental selection and contain significant proportions of extremophilic microorganisms adapted to desiccation and UV radiation. We find that the nature of the substrate as well as climatic variables and geography influences microbial community structure. However, constrained correspondence analyses and distance-decay curves showed that, whereas the substrate type was the most significant factor structuring bacterial communities, geographic location was the most influential factor for microbial eukaryote communities. Biological explanations implying a higher dispersal success for bacteria combined with more mobile lifestyles for predatory protists may underlie these different prokaryote versus microbial eukaryote biogeographic patterns.

  9. Phylogenetic analysis reveals the evolution and diversification of cyclins in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Ma, Zhaowu; Wu, Yuliang; Jin, Jialu; Yan, Jun; Kuang, Shuzhen; Zhou, Mi; Zhang, Yuexuan; Guo, An-Yuan

    2013-03-01

    Cyclins are a family of diverse proteins that play fundamental roles in regulating cell cycle progression in Eukaryotes. Cyclins have been identified from protists to higher Eukaryotes, while its evolution remains vague and the findings turn out controversial. Current classification of cyclins is mainly based on their functions, which may not be appropriate for the systematic evolutionary analysis. In this work, we performed comparative and phylogenetic analysis of cyclins to investigate their classification, origin and evolution. Cyclins originated in early Eukaryotes and evolved from protists to plants, fungi and animals. Based on the phylogenetic tree, cyclins can be divided into three major groups designated as the group I, II and III with different functions and features. Group I plays key roles in cell cycle, group II varied in actions are kingdom (plant, fungi and animal) specific, and group III functions in transcription regulation. Our results showed that the dominating cyclins (group I) diverged from protists to plants, fungi and animals, while divergence of the other cyclins (groups II and III) has occurred in protists. We also discussed the evolutionary relationships between cyclins and cyclin-dependent kinases (CDKs) and found that the cyclins have undergone divergence in protists before the divergence of animal CDKs. This reclassification and evolutionary analysis of cyclins might facilitate understanding eukaryotic cell cycle control.

  10. Dictyostelium discoideum--a promising expression system for the production of eukaryotic proteins.

    PubMed

    Arya, Ranjana; Bhattacharya, Alok; Saini, Kulvinder Singh

    2008-12-01

    In general, four different expression systems, namely, bacterial, yeast, baculovirus, and mammalian, are widely used for the overproduction of biochemical enzymes and therapeutic proteins. Clearly, bacterial expression systems offer ease of maneuverability with respect to large-scale production of recombinant proteins, while, a baculovirus expression system ensures proper protein modifications, processing, and refolding of complex proteins. Despite these advantages, mammalian cells remain the preferred host for many eukaryotic proteins of pharmaceutical importance, particularly, those requiring post-translational modifications. Recently, the single-celled slime mold, Dictyostelium discoideum (Dd), has emerged as a promising eukaryotic host for the expression of a variety of heterologous recombinant eukaryotic proteins. This organism possesses the complex cellular machinery required for orchestrating post-translational modifications similar to the one observed in higher eukaryotes. This review summarizes the advantages and disadvantages of Dictyostelium as an alternate system compared to other well-established expression systems. The key lessons learned from the expression of human recombinant proteins in this system are reviewed. Also, the strengths, weaknesses, and challenges associated with industrial-scale production of proteins in Dd expression system are discussed. PMID:18714070

  11. Lateral transfer of eukaryotic ribosomal RNA genes: an emerging concern for molecular ecology of microbial eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Yabuki, Akinori; Toyofuku, Takashi; Takishita, Kiyotaka

    2014-07-01

    Ribosomal RNA (rRNA) genes are widely utilized in depicting organismal diversity and distribution in a wide range of environments. Although a few cases of lateral transfer of rRNA genes between closely related prokaryotes have been reported, it remains to be reported from eukaryotes. Here, we report the first case of lateral transfer of eukaryotic rRNA genes. Two distinct sequences of the 18S rRNA gene were detected from a clonal culture of the stramenopile, Ciliophrys infusionum. One was clearly derived from Ciliophrys, but the other gene originated from a perkinsid alveolate. Genome-walking analyses revealed that this alveolate-type rRNA gene is immediately adjacent to two protein-coding genes (ubc12 and usp39), and the origin of both genes was shown to be a stramenopile (that is, Ciliophrys) in our phylogenetic analyses. These findings indicate that the alveolate-type rRNA gene is encoded on the Ciliophrys genome and that eukaryotic rRNA genes can be transferred laterally.

  12. Eukaryotic Cells and their Cell Bodies: Cell Theory Revised

    PubMed Central

    BALUŠKA, FRANTIŠEK; VOLKMANN, DIETER; BARLOW, PETER W.

    2004-01-01

    • Background Cell Theory, also known as cell doctrine, states that all eukaryotic organisms are composed of cells, and that cells are the smallest independent units of life. This Cell Theory has been influential in shaping the biological sciences ever since, in 1838/1839, the botanist Matthias Schleiden and the zoologist Theodore Schwann stated the principle that cells represent the elements from which all plant and animal tissues are constructed. Some 20 years later, in a famous aphorism Omnis cellula e cellula, Rudolf Virchow annunciated that all cells arise only from pre‐existing cells. General acceptance of Cell Theory was finally possible only when the cellular nature of brain tissues was confirmed at the end of the 20th century. Cell Theory then rapidly turned into a more dogmatic cell doctrine, and in this form survives up to the present day. In its current version, however, the generalized Cell Theory developed for both animals and plants is unable to accommodate the supracellular nature of higher plants, which is founded upon a super‐symplasm of interconnected cells into which is woven apoplasm, symplasm and super‐apoplasm. Furthermore, there are numerous examples of multinucleate coenocytes and syncytia found throughout the eukaryote superkingdom posing serious problems for the current version of Cell Theory. • Scope To cope with these problems, we here review data which conform to the original proposal of Daniel Mazia that the eukaryotic cell is composed of an elemental Cell Body whose structure is smaller than the cell and which is endowed with all the basic attributes of a living entity. A complement to the Cell Body is the Cell Periphery Apparatus, which consists of the plasma membrane associated with other periphery structures. Importantly, boundary stuctures of the Cell Periphery Apparatus, although capable of some self‐assembly, are largely produced and maintained by Cell Body activities and can be produced from it de novo. These

  13. Eukaryotic association module in phage WO genomes from Wolbachia

    PubMed Central

    Bordenstein, Sarah R.; Bordenstein, Seth R.

    2016-01-01

    Viruses are trifurcated into eukaryotic, archaeal and bacterial categories. This domain-specific ecology underscores why eukaryotic viruses typically co-opt eukaryotic genes and bacteriophages commonly harbour bacterial genes. However, the presence of bacteriophages in obligate intracellular bacteria of eukaryotes may promote DNA transfers between eukaryotes and bacteriophages. Here we report a metagenomic analysis of purified bacteriophage WO particles of Wolbachia and uncover a eukaryotic association module in the complete WO genome. It harbours predicted domains, such as the black widow latrotoxin C-terminal domain, that are uninterrupted in bacteriophage genomes, enriched with eukaryotic protease cleavage sites and combined with additional domains to forge one of the largest bacteriophage genes to date (14,256 bp). To the best of our knowledge, these eukaryotic-like domains have never before been reported in packaged bacteriophages and their phylogeny, distribution and sequence diversity imply lateral transfers between bacteriophage/prophage and animal genomes. Finally, the WO genome sequences and identification of attachment sites will potentially advance genetic manipulation of Wolbachia. PMID:27727237

  14. Molecular paleontology and complexity in the last eukaryotic common ancestor.

    PubMed

    Koumandou, V Lila; Wickstead, Bill; Ginger, Michael L; van der Giezen, Mark; Dacks, Joel B; Field, Mark C

    2013-01-01

    Eukaryogenesis, the origin of the eukaryotic cell, represents one of the fundamental evolutionary transitions in the history of life on earth. This event, which is estimated to have occurred over one billion years ago, remains rather poorly understood. While some well-validated examples of fossil microbial eukaryotes for this time frame have been described, these can provide only basic morphology and the molecular machinery present in these organisms has remained unknown. Complete and partial genomic information has begun to fill this gap, and is being used to trace proteins and cellular traits to their roots and to provide unprecedented levels of resolution of structures, metabolic pathways and capabilities of organisms at these earliest points within the eukaryotic lineage. This is essentially allowing a molecular paleontology. What has emerged from these studies is spectacular cellular complexity prior to expansion of the eukaryotic lineages. Multiple reconstructed cellular systems indicate a very sophisticated biology, which by implication arose following the initial eukaryogenesis event but prior to eukaryotic radiation and provides a challenge in terms of explaining how these early eukaryotes arose and in understanding how they lived. Here, we provide brief overviews of several cellular systems and the major emerging conclusions, together with predictions for subsequent directions in evolution leading to extant taxa. We also consider what these reconstructions suggest about the life styles and capabilities of these earliest eukaryotes and the period of evolution between the radiation of eukaryotes and the eukaryogenesis event itself.

  15. Molecular paleontology and complexity in the last eukaryotic common ancestor

    PubMed Central

    Koumandou, V. Lila; Wickstead, Bill; Ginger, Michael L.; van der Giezen, Mark; Dacks, Joel B.

    2013-01-01

    Eukaryogenesis, the origin of the eukaryotic cell, represents one of the fundamental evolutionary transitions in the history of life on earth. This event, which is estimated to have occurred over one billion years ago, remains rather poorly understood. While some well-validated examples of fossil microbial eukaryotes for this time frame have been described, these can provide only basic morphology and the molecular machinery present in these organisms has remained unknown. Complete and partial genomic information has begun to fill this gap, and is being used to trace proteins and cellular traits to their roots and to provide unprecedented levels of resolution of structures, metabolic pathways and capabilities of organisms at these earliest points within the eukaryotic lineage. This is essentially allowing a molecular paleontology. What has emerged from these studies is spectacular cellular complexity prior to expansion of the eukaryotic lineages. Multiple reconstructed cellular systems indicate a very sophisticated biology, which by implication arose following the initial eukaryogenesis event but prior to eukaryotic radiation and provides a challenge in terms of explaining how these early eukaryotes arose and in understanding how they lived. Here, we provide brief overviews of several cellular systems and the major emerging conclusions, together with predictions for subsequent directions in evolution leading to extant taxa. We also consider what these reconstructions suggest about the life styles and capabilities of these earliest eukaryotes and the period of evolution between the radiation of eukaryotes and the eukaryogenesis event itself. PMID:23895660

  16. Unveiling new microbial eukaryotes in the surface ocean.

    PubMed

    Massana, Ramon; Pedrós-Alió, Carlos

    2008-06-01

    A decade after molecular techniques were used to discover novel bacteria and archaea in the oceans, the same approach has revealed a wealth of new marine eukaryotic microbes. The approach has been particularly successful with the smallest eukaryotes, where morphological and culture approaches frequently fail. Analysis of samples from the surface ocean, the most accessible and supposedly well-known oceanic region, reveals novel eukaryotic diversity at all different levels: from the highest taxonomic rank to the lowest microdiverse clusters. Moreover, marine eukaryotic assemblages show a large diversity with members belonging to many different lineages. The implication of this large and novel eukaryotic diversity for biodiversity surveys and ecosystem functioning opens new avenues for future research. PMID:18556239

  17. Expression strategies for structural studies of eukaryotic membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Lyons, Joseph A; Shahsavar, Azadeh; Paulsen, Peter Aasted; Pedersen, Bjørn Panyella; Nissen, Poul

    2016-06-01

    Integral membrane proteins in eukaryotes are central to various cellular processes and key targets in structural biology, biotechnology and drug development. However, the number of available structures for eukaryotic membrane protein belies their physiological importance. Recently, the number of available eukaryotic membrane protein structures has been steadily increasing due to the development of novel strategies in construct design, expression and structure determination. Here, we examine the major expression systems exploited for eukaryotic membrane proteins. Additionally we strive to tabulate and describe the recent expression strategies in eukaryotic membrane protein structural biology. We find that a majority of targets have been expressed in advanced host systems and modified from their wild-type form with distinct focus on conformation and thermostabilisation. However, strategies for native protein purification should also be considered where possible, particularly in light of the recent advances in single particle cryo electron microscopy.

  18. Expression strategies for structural studies of eukaryotic membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Lyons, Joseph A; Shahsavar, Azadeh; Paulsen, Peter Aasted; Pedersen, Bjørn Panyella; Nissen, Poul

    2016-06-01

    Integral membrane proteins in eukaryotes are central to various cellular processes and key targets in structural biology, biotechnology and drug development. However, the number of available structures for eukaryotic membrane protein belies their physiological importance. Recently, the number of available eukaryotic membrane protein structures has been steadily increasing due to the development of novel strategies in construct design, expression and structure determination. Here, we examine the major expression systems exploited for eukaryotic membrane proteins. Additionally we strive to tabulate and describe the recent expression strategies in eukaryotic membrane protein structural biology. We find that a majority of targets have been expressed in advanced host systems and modified from their wild-type form with distinct focus on conformation and thermostabilisation. However, strategies for native protein purification should also be considered where possible, particularly in light of the recent advances in single particle cryo electron microscopy. PMID:27362979

  19. Symbiosis as a general principle in eukaryotic evolution.

    PubMed

    Douglas, Angela E

    2014-02-01

    Eukaryotes have evolved and diversified in the context of persistent colonization by non-pathogenic microorganisms. Various resident microorganisms provide a metabolic capability absent from the host, resulting in increased ecological amplitude and often evolutionary diversification of the host. Some microorganisms confer primary metabolic pathways, such as photosynthesis and cellulose degradation, and others expand the repertoire of secondary metabolism, including the synthesis of toxins that confer protection against natural enemies. A further route by which microorganisms affect host fitness arises from their modulation of the eukaryotic-signaling networks that regulate growth, development, behavior, and other functions. These effects are not necessarily based on interactions beneficial to the host, but can be a consequence of either eukaryotic utilization of microbial products as cues or host-microbial conflict. By these routes, eukaryote-microbial interactions play an integral role in the function and evolutionary diversification of eukaryotes.

  20. Energetics and genetics across the prokaryote-eukaryote divide

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background All complex life on Earth is eukaryotic. All eukaryotic cells share a common ancestor that arose just once in four billion years of evolution. Prokaryotes show no tendency to evolve greater morphological complexity, despite their metabolic virtuosity. Here I argue that the eukaryotic cell originated in a unique prokaryotic endosymbiosis, a singular event that transformed the selection pressures acting on both host and endosymbiont. Results The reductive evolution and specialisation of endosymbionts to mitochondria resulted in an extreme genomic asymmetry, in which the residual mitochondrial genomes enabled the expansion of bioenergetic membranes over several orders of magnitude, overcoming the energetic constraints on prokaryotic genome size, and permitting the host cell genome to expand (in principle) over 200,000-fold. This energetic transformation was permissive, not prescriptive; I suggest that the actual increase in early eukaryotic genome size was driven by a heavy early bombardment of genes and introns from the endosymbiont to the host cell, producing a high mutation rate. Unlike prokaryotes, with lower mutation rates and heavy selection pressure to lose genes, early eukaryotes without genome-size limitations could mask mutations by cell fusion and genome duplication, as in allopolyploidy, giving rise to a proto-sexual cell cycle. The side effect was that a large number of shared eukaryotic basal traits accumulated in the same population, a sexual eukaryotic common ancestor, radically different to any known prokaryote. Conclusions The combination of massive bioenergetic expansion, release from genome-size constraints, and high mutation rate favoured a protosexual cell cycle and the accumulation of eukaryotic traits. These factors explain the unique origin of eukaryotes, the absence of true evolutionary intermediates, and the evolution of sex in eukaryotes but not prokaryotes. Reviewers This article was reviewed by: Eugene Koonin, William Martin

  1. Origins and evolution of viruses of eukaryotes: The ultimate modularity

    SciTech Connect

    Koonin, Eugene V.; Dolja, Valerian V.; Krupovic, Mart

    2015-05-15

    Viruses and other selfish genetic elements are dominant entities in the biosphere, with respect to both physical abundance and genetic diversity. Various selfish elements parasitize on all cellular life forms. The relative abundances of different classes of viruses are dramatically different between prokaryotes and eukaryotes. In prokaryotes, the great majority of viruses possess double-stranded (ds) DNA genomes, with a substantial minority of single-stranded (ss) DNA viruses and only limited presence of RNA viruses. In contrast, in eukaryotes, RNA viruses account for the majority of the virome diversity although ssDNA and dsDNA viruses are common as well. Phylogenomic analysis yields tangible clues for the origins of major classes of eukaryotic viruses and in particular their likely roots in prokaryotes. Specifically, the ancestral genome of positive-strand RNA viruses of eukaryotes might have been assembled de novo from genes derived from prokaryotic retroelements and bacteria although a primordial origin of this class of viruses cannot be ruled out. Different groups of double-stranded RNA viruses derive either from dsRNA bacteriophages or from positive-strand RNA viruses. The eukaryotic ssDNA viruses apparently evolved via a fusion of genes from prokaryotic rolling circle-replicating plasmids and positive-strand RNA viruses. Different families of eukaryotic dsDNA viruses appear to have originated from specific groups of bacteriophages on at least two independent occasions. Polintons, the largest known eukaryotic transposons, predicted to also form virus particles, most likely, were the evolutionary intermediates between bacterial tectiviruses and several groups of eukaryotic dsDNA viruses including the proposed order “Megavirales” that unites diverse families of large and giant viruses. Strikingly, evolution of all classes of eukaryotic viruses appears to have involved fusion between structural and replicative gene modules derived from different sources

  2. Microbial eukaryote plankton communities of high-mountain lakes from three continents exhibit strong biogeographic patterns.

    PubMed

    Filker, Sabine; Sommaruga, Ruben; Vila, Irma; Stoeck, Thorsten

    2016-05-01

    Microbial eukaryotes hold a key role in aquatic ecosystem functioning. Yet, their diversity in freshwater lakes, particularly in high-mountain lakes, is relatively unknown compared with the marine environment. Low nutrient availability, low water temperature and high ultraviolet radiation make most high-mountain lakes extremely challenging habitats for life and require specific molecular and physiological adaptations. We therefore expected that these ecosystems support a plankton diversity that differs notably from other freshwater lakes. In addition, we hypothesized that the communities under study exhibit geographic structuring. Our rationale was that geographic dispersal of small-sized eukaryotes in high-mountain lakes over continental distances seems difficult. We analysed hypervariable V4 fragments of the SSU rRNA gene to compare the genetic microbial eukaryote diversity in high-mountain lakes located in the European Alps, the Chilean Altiplano and the Ethiopian Bale Mountains. Microbial eukaryotes were not globally distributed corroborating patterns found for bacteria, multicellular animals and plants. Instead, the plankton community composition emerged as a highly specific fingerprint of a geographic region even on higher taxonomic levels. The intraregional heterogeneity of the investigated lakes was mirrored in shifts in microbial eukaryote community structure, which, however, was much less pronounced compared with interregional beta-diversity. Statistical analyses revealed that on a regional scale, environmental factors are strong predictors for plankton community structures in high-mountain lakes. While on long-distance scales (>10 000 km), isolation by distance is the most plausible scenario, on intermediate scales (up to 6000 km), both contemporary environmental factors and historical contingencies interact to shift plankton community structures.

  3. Microbial eukaryote plankton communities of high-mountain lakes from three continents exhibit strong biogeographic patterns.

    PubMed

    Filker, Sabine; Sommaruga, Ruben; Vila, Irma; Stoeck, Thorsten

    2016-05-01

    Microbial eukaryotes hold a key role in aquatic ecosystem functioning. Yet, their diversity in freshwater lakes, particularly in high-mountain lakes, is relatively unknown compared with the marine environment. Low nutrient availability, low water temperature and high ultraviolet radiation make most high-mountain lakes extremely challenging habitats for life and require specific molecular and physiological adaptations. We therefore expected that these ecosystems support a plankton diversity that differs notably from other freshwater lakes. In addition, we hypothesized that the communities under study exhibit geographic structuring. Our rationale was that geographic dispersal of small-sized eukaryotes in high-mountain lakes over continental distances seems difficult. We analysed hypervariable V4 fragments of the SSU rRNA gene to compare the genetic microbial eukaryote diversity in high-mountain lakes located in the European Alps, the Chilean Altiplano and the Ethiopian Bale Mountains. Microbial eukaryotes were not globally distributed corroborating patterns found for bacteria, multicellular animals and plants. Instead, the plankton community composition emerged as a highly specific fingerprint of a geographic region even on higher taxonomic levels. The intraregional heterogeneity of the investigated lakes was mirrored in shifts in microbial eukaryote community structure, which, however, was much less pronounced compared with interregional beta-diversity. Statistical analyses revealed that on a regional scale, environmental factors are strong predictors for plankton community structures in high-mountain lakes. While on long-distance scales (>10 000 km), isolation by distance is the most plausible scenario, on intermediate scales (up to 6000 km), both contemporary environmental factors and historical contingencies interact to shift plankton community structures. PMID:27029537

  4. Glycerolipid synthesis in Chlorella kessleri 11h. I. Existence of a eukaryotic pathway.

    PubMed

    Sato, Norihiro; Tsuzuki, Mikio; Kawaguchi, Akihiko

    2003-07-01

    The fatty acid distributions at the sn-1 and sn-2 positions in major chloroplast lipids of Chlorella kessleri 11h, monogalactosyl diacylglycerol (MGDG) and digalactosyl diacylglycerol (DGDG), were determined to show the coexistence of both C16 and C18 acids at the sn-2 position, i.e. of prokaryotic and eukaryotic types in these galactolipids. For investigation of the biosynthetic pathway for glycerolipids in C. kessleri 11h, cells were fed with [14C]acetate for 30 min, and then the distribution of the radioactivity among glycerolipids and their constituent fatty acids during the subsequent chase period was determined. MGDG and DGDG were labeled predominantly as the sn-1-C18-sn-2-C16 (C18/C16) species as early as by the start of the chase, which suggested the synthesis of these lipids within chloroplasts via a prokaryotic pathway. On the other hand, the sn-1-C18-sn-2-C18 (C18/C18) species of these galactolipids gradually gained radioactivity at later times, concomitant with a decrease in the radioactivity of the C18/C18 species of phosphatidylcholine (PC). The change at later times can be explained by the conversion of the C18/C18 species of PC into galactolipids through a eukaryotic pathway. The results showed that C. kessleri 11h, distinct from most of other green algal species that were postulated mainly to use a prokaryotic pathway for the synthesis of chloroplast lipids, is similar to a group of higher plants designated as 16:3 plants in terms of the cooperation of prokaryotic and eukaryotic pathways to synthesize chloroplast lipids. We propose that the physiological function of the eukaryotic pathway in C. kessleri 11h is to supply chloroplast membranes with 18:3/18:3-MGDG for their functioning, and that the acquisition of a eukaryotic pathway by green algae was favorable for evolution into land plants.

  5. Mathematical modelling of eukaryotic DNA replication.

    PubMed

    Hyrien, Olivier; Goldar, Arach

    2010-01-01

    Eukaryotic DNA replication is a complex process. Replication starts at thousand origins that are activated at different times in S phase and terminates when converging replication forks meet. Potential origins are much more abundant than actually fire within a given S phase. The choice of replication origins and their time of activation is never exactly the same in any two cells. Individual origins show different efficiencies and different firing time probability distributions, conferring stochasticity to the DNA replication process. High-throughput microarray and sequencing techniques are providing increasingly huge datasets on the population-averaged spatiotemporal patterns of DNA replication in several organisms. On the other hand, single-molecule replication mapping techniques such as DNA combing provide unique information about cell-to-cell variability in DNA replication patterns. Mathematical modelling is required to fully comprehend the complexity of the chromosome replication process and to correctly interpret these data. Mathematical analysis and computer simulations have been recently used to model and interpret genome-wide replication data in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Schizosaccharomyces pombe, in Xenopus egg extracts and in mammalian cells. These works reveal how stochasticity in origin usage confers robustness and reliability to the DNA replication process. PMID:20205354

  6. Eukaryotic versus prokaryotic marine picoplankton ecology.

    PubMed

    Massana, Ramon; Logares, Ramiro

    2013-05-01

    Marine microorganisms contribute markedly to global biomass and ecosystem function. They include a diverse collection of organisms differing in cell size and in evolutionary history. In particular, microbes within the picoplankton are similar in size but belong to two drastically different cellular plans, the prokaryotes and the eukaryotes. Compared with larger organisms, prokaryotes and picoeukaryotes share ecological features, such as high specific activity, large and constant abundances, and high dispersal potential. Still, there are some aspects where their different cell organization influences their ecological performance. First, prokaryotes have a huge metabolic versatility and are involved in all biogeochemical cycles, whereas picoeukaryotes are metabolically less flexible but can exploit diverse predatory life strategies due to their phagocytic capacity. Second, sexual reproduction is absent in prokaryotes but may be present in picoeukaryotes, thus determining different evolutionary diversification dynamics and making species limits clearer in picoeukaryotes. Finally, it is plausible that picoeukaryotes are less flexible to enter a reversible state of low metabolic activity, thus picoeukaryote assemblages may have fewer rare species and may be less resilient to environmental change. In summary, lumping together pico-sized microbes may be convenient for some ecological studies, but it is also important to keep in mind their differences.

  7. The cellular slime mold: eukaryotic model microorganism.

    PubMed

    Urushihara, Hideko

    2009-04-01

    Cellular slime molds are eukaryotic microorganisms in the soil. They feed on bacteria as solitary amoebae but conditionally construct multicellular forms in which cell differentiation takes place. Therefore, they are attractive for the study of fundamental biological phenomena such as phagocytosis, cell division, chemotactic movements, intercellular communication, cell differentiation, and morphogenesis. The most widely used species, Dictyostelium discoideum, is highly amenable to experimental manipulation and can be used with most recent molecular biological techniques. Its genome and cDNA analyses have been completed and well-annotated data are publicly available. A larger number of orthologues of human disease-related genes were found in D. discoideum than in yeast. Moreover, some pathogenic bacteria infect Dictyostelium amoebae. Thus, this microorganism can also offer a good experimental system for biomedical research. The resources of cellular slime molds, standard strains, mutants, and genes are maintained and distributed upon request by the core center of the National BioResource Project (NBRP-nenkin) to support Dictyostelium community users as well as new users interested in new platforms for research and/or phylogenic consideration.

  8. Ring fission of anthracene by a eukaryote.

    PubMed Central

    Hammel, K E; Green, B; Gai, W Z

    1991-01-01

    Ligninolytic fungi are unique among eukaryotes in their ability to degrade polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), but the mechanism for this process is unknown. Although certain PAHs are oxidized in vitro by the fungal lignin peroxidases (LiPs) that catalyze ligninolysis, it has never been shown that LiPs initiate PAH degradation in vivo. To address these problems, the metabolism of anthracene (AC) and its in vitro oxidation product, 9,10-anthraquinone (AQ), was examined by chromatographic and isotope dilution techniques in Phanerochaete chrysosporium. The fungal oxidation of AC to AQ was rapid, and both AC and AQ were significantly mineralized. Both compounds were cleaved by the fungus to give the same ring-fission metabolite, phthalic acid, and phthalate production from AQ was shown to occur only under ligninolytic culture conditions. These results show that the major pathway for AC degradation in Phanerochaete proceeds AC----AQ----phthalate + CO2 and that it is probably mediated by LiPs and other enzymes of ligninolytic metabolism. Images PMID:1961727

  9. Genomic impact of eukaryotic transposable elements

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    The third international conference on the genomic impact of eukaryotic transposable elements (TEs) was held 24 to 28 February 2012 at the Asilomar Conference Center, Pacific Grove, CA, USA. Sponsored in part by the National Institutes of Health grant 5 P41 LM006252, the goal of the conference was to bring together researchers from around the world who study the impact and mechanisms of TEs using multiple computational and experimental approaches. The meeting drew close to 170 attendees and included invited floor presentations on the biology of TEs and their genomic impact, as well as numerous talks contributed by young scientists. The workshop talks were devoted to computational analysis of TEs with additional time for discussion of unresolved issues. Also, there was ample opportunity for poster presentations and informal evening discussions. The success of the meeting reflects the important role of Repbase in comparative genomic studies, and emphasizes the need for close interactions between experimental and computational biologists in the years to come. PMID:23171443

  10. Kinesin-related proteins in eukaryotic flagella.

    PubMed

    Fox, L A; Sawin, K E; Sale, W S

    1994-06-01

    To identify kinesin-related proteins that are important for ciliary and eukaryotic flagellar functions, we used affinity-purified, polyclonal antibodies to synthetic peptides corresponding to conserved sequences in the motor domain of kinesin (Sawin et al. (1992) J. Cell Sci. 101, 303-313). Using immunoblot analysis, two antibodies to distinct sequences (LNLVDLAGSE, 'LAGSE' and, HIPYRESKLT, 'HIPYR') reveal a family of proteins in flagella and axonemes isolated from Chlamydomonas. Similar analysis of axonemes from mutant Chlamydomonas strains or fractionated axonemes indicates that none of the immunoreactive proteins are associated with dynein arm or spoke structures. In contrast, one protein, approximately 110 kDa, is reduced in axonemes from mutant strains defective in the central pair apparatus. Immunoreactive proteins with masses of 96 and 97 kDa (the '97 kDa' proteins) are selectively solubilized from isolated axonemes in 10 mM ATP. The 97 kDa proteins co-sediment in sucrose gradients at about 9 S and bind to axonemes or purified microtubules in a nucleotide-dependent fashion characteristic of kinesin. These results reveal that flagella contain kinesin-related proteins, which may be involved in axonemal central pair function and flagellar motility, or directed transport involved in morphogenesis or mating responses in Chlamydomonas.

  11. Oscillations of Eukaryotic Cilia and Flagella

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gopinath, Arvind; Mahadevan, Lakshminarayanan

    2006-11-01

    The undulating beat of eukaryotic flagella and cilia produces forces that move cells and cause locomotion. The timing mechanisms that generate these periodic undulations are still mysterious and the question of how these oscillations arise is still a subject of much research - both experimental and theoretical. Recent experimental results on paralyzed and reconstituted flagella offer new insight into the dynamical mechanisms that could result in sustained waveform generation. Motivated by these recent experimental results we propose a model that mimics the flagellar structure as motor driven elastic, inextensible filaments. We hypothesize that the oscillations arise due to motor (dynein) driven, constrained, relative sliding of parts of the flagella. The dynamical equations describing the evolution of the populations of attached and detached motors is actively coupled to the local configuration as well as local sliding velocities via strain and configuration dependent kinetic reaction rates. At the same time, the filament configuration is actively coupled to the motor densities via the dependence of the active internal torque densities on the motor populations as well as their internal state. Appropriate ensemble averaged force-velocity relationships for the motors completes the set of equations. Numerical solutions reveal onset of dynamical instabilities via Hopf-bifurcations with oscillatory waveforms emerging from a trivial base state corresponding to a straight, non-moving flagellum.

  12. An investigation into eukaryotic pseudouridine synthases.

    PubMed

    King, Ross D; Lu, Chuan

    2014-08-01

    A common post-transcriptional modification of RNA is the conversion of uridine to its isomer pseudouridine. We investigated the biological significance of eukaryotic pseudouridine synthases using the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. We conducted a comprehensive statistical analysis on growth data from automated perturbation (gene deletion) experiments, and used bi-logistic curve analysis to characterise the yeast phenotypes. The deletant strains displayed different alteration in growth properties, including in some cases enhanced growth and/or biphasic growth curves not seen in wild-type strains under matched conditions. These results demonstrate that disrupting pseudouridine synthases can have a significant qualitative effect on growth. We further investigated the significance of post-transcriptional pseudouridine modification through investigation of the scientific literature. We found that (1) In Toxoplasma gondii, a pseudouridine synthase gene is critical in cellular differentiation between the two asexual forms: Tachyzoites and bradyzoites; (2) Mutation of pseudouridine synthase genes has also been implicated in human diseases (mitochondrial myopathy and sideroblastic anemia (MLASA); dyskeratosis congenita). Taken together, these results are consistent with pseudouridine synthases having a Gene Ontology function of "biological regulation".

  13. Counterintuitive effect of fall mixed layer deepening on eukaryotic new production in the Sargasso Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fawcett, S. E.; Lomas, M. W.; Ward, B. B.; Sigman, D. M.

    2012-12-01

    The Sargasso Sea is characterized by a short period of deep vertical mixing in the late winter and early spring, followed by strong thermal stratification during the summer. Stratification persists into the fall, impeding the upward flux of nitrate from depth so that recycled forms of nitrogen (N) such as ammonium are thought to support most primary production. We collected particles from surface waters during March, July, October, and December, used flow cytometry to separate the prokaryotic and eukaryotic phytoplankton, and analyzed their respective 15N/14N. In all months, the 15N/14N of the prokaryotic genera, Prochlorococcus and Synechococcus, was low, indicative of reliance on recycled N throughout the year. In July, the 15N/14N of eukaryotic phytoplankton was variable but consistently higher than that of the prokaryotes, reflecting eukaryotic consumption of subsurface nitrate. Two eukaryotic profiles from October and December were similar to those from July. In three other fall profiles, the eukaryotes had a 15N/14N similar to that of the prokaryotes, suggesting a switch toward greater reliance on recycled N. This change in the dominant N source supporting eukaryotic production appears to be driven by the density structure of the upper water column. The very shallow low-density surface "mixed layer" (≤20 m) that develops in early-to-mid summer does not contribute to stratification at the base of the euphotic zone, and subsurface nitrate can mix up into the lower euphotic zone, facilitating continued production. The deepening of the mixed layer into the fall, typically taken as an indication of weaker overall stratification, actually strengthens the isolation of the euphotic zone as a whole, reducing the upward supply of nitrate to the photosynthetically active layer. The same counterintuitive dynamic explains the latitudinal patterns in a set of three October depth profiles. Two northern stations (32°N and 27°N) were characterized by a thick, low

  14. Archaeal ancestors of eukaryotes: not so elusive any more.

    PubMed

    Koonin, Eugene V

    2015-01-01

    The origin of eukaryotes is one of the hardest problems in evolutionary biology and sometimes raises the ominous specter of irreducible complexity. Reconstruction of the gene repertoire of the last eukaryotic common ancestor (LECA) has revealed a highly complex organism with a variety of advanced features but no detectable evolutionary intermediates to explain their origin. Recently, however, genome analysis of diverse archaea led to the discovery of apparent ancestral versions of several signature eukaryotic systems, such as the actin cytoskeleton and the ubiquitin network, that are scattered among archaea. These findings inspired the hypothesis that the archaeal ancestor of eukaryotes was an unusually complex form with an elaborate intracellular organization. The latest striking discovery made by deep metagenomic sequencing vindicates this hypothesis by showing that in phylogenetic trees eukaryotes fall within a newly identified archaeal group, the Lokiarchaeota, which combine several eukaryotic signatures previously identified in different archaea. The discovery of complex archaea that are the closest living relatives of eukaryotes is most compatible with the symbiogenetic scenario for eukaryogenesis.

  15. Potential of industrial biotechnology with cyanobacteria and eukaryotic microalgae.

    PubMed

    Wijffels, René H; Kruse, Olaf; Hellingwerf, Klaas J

    2013-06-01

    Both cyanobacteria and eukaryotic microalgae are promising organisms for sustainable production of bulk products such as food, feed, materials, chemicals and fuels. In this review we will summarize the potential and current biotechnological developments. Cyanobacteria are promising host organisms for the production of small molecules that can be secreted such as ethanol, butanol, fatty acids and other organic acids. Eukaryotic microalgae are interesting for products for which cellular storage is important such as proteins, lipids, starch and alkanes. For the development of new and promising lines of production, strains of both cyanobacteria and eukaryotic microalgae have to be improved. Transformation systems have been much better developed in cyanobacteria. However, several products would be preferably produced with eukaryotic microalgae. In the case of cyanobacteria a synthetic-systems biology approach has a great potential to exploit cyanobacteria as cell factories. For eukaryotic microalgae transformation systems need to be further developed. A promising strategy is transformation of heterologous (prokaryotic and eukaryotic) genes in established eukaryotic hosts such as Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. Experimental outdoor pilots under containment for the production of genetically modified cyanobacteria and microalgae are in progress. For full scale production risks of release of genetically modified organisms need to be assessed.

  16. Implications of the new eukaryotic systematics for parasitologists.

    PubMed

    Dacks, Joel B; Walker, Giselle; Field, Mark C

    2008-06-01

    An accurate understanding of evolutionary relationships is central in biology. For parasitologists, understanding the relationships among eukaryotic organisms allows the prediction of virulence mechanisms, reconstruction of metabolic pathways, identification of potential drug targets, elucidation of parasite-specific cellular processes and understanding of interactions with the host or vector. Here we consider the impact of major recent revisions of eukaryotic systematics and taxonomy on parasitology. The previous, ladder-like model placed some protists as early diverging, with the remaining eukaryotes "progressing" towards a "crown radiation" of animals, plants, Fungi and some additional protistan lineages. This model has been robustly disproven. The new model is based on vastly increased amounts of molecular sequence data, integration with morphological information and the rigorous application of phylogenetic methods to those data. It now divides eukaryotes into six major supergroups; the relationships between those groups and the order of branching remain unknown. This new eukaryotic phylogeny emphasizes that organisms including Giardia, Trypanosoma and Trichomonas are not primitive, but instead highly evolved and specialised for their specific environments. The wealth of newly available comparative genomic data has also allowed the reconstruction of ancient suites of characteristics and mapping of character evolution in diverse parasites. For example, the last common eukaryotic ancestor was apparently complex, suggesting that lineage-specific adaptations and secondary losses have been important in the evolution of protistan parasites. Referring to the best evidence-based models for eukaryotic evolution will allow parasitologists to make more accurate and reliable inferences about pathogens that cause significant morbidity and mortality.

  17. Origins and evolution of viruses of eukaryotes: The ultimate modularity.

    PubMed

    Koonin, Eugene V; Dolja, Valerian V; Krupovic, Mart

    2015-05-01

    Viruses and other selfish genetic elements are dominant entities in the biosphere, with respect to both physical abundance and genetic diversity. Various selfish elements parasitize on all cellular life forms. The relative abundances of different classes of viruses are dramatically different between prokaryotes and eukaryotes. In prokaryotes, the great majority of viruses possess double-stranded (ds) DNA genomes, with a substantial minority of single-stranded (ss) DNA viruses and only limited presence of RNA viruses. In contrast, in eukaryotes, RNA viruses account for the majority of the virome diversity although ssDNA and dsDNA viruses are common as well. Phylogenomic analysis yields tangible clues for the origins of major classes of eukaryotic viruses and in particular their likely roots in prokaryotes. Specifically, the ancestral genome of positive-strand RNA viruses of eukaryotes might have been assembled de novo from genes derived from prokaryotic retroelements and bacteria although a primordial origin of this class of viruses cannot be ruled out. Different groups of double-stranded RNA viruses derive either from dsRNA bacteriophages or from positive-strand RNA viruses. The eukaryotic ssDNA viruses apparently evolved via a fusion of genes from prokaryotic rolling circle-replicating plasmids and positive-strand RNA viruses. Different families of eukaryotic dsDNA viruses appear to have originated from specific groups of bacteriophages on at least two independent occasions. Polintons, the largest known eukaryotic transposons, predicted to also form virus particles, most likely, were the evolutionary intermediates between bacterial tectiviruses and several groups of eukaryotic dsDNA viruses including the proposed order "Megavirales" that unites diverse families of large and giant viruses. Strikingly, evolution of all classes of eukaryotic viruses appears to have involved fusion between structural and replicative gene modules derived from different sources along

  18. Biochemistry and Evolution of Anaerobic Energy Metabolism in Eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Müller, Miklós; Mentel, Marek; van Hellemond, Jaap J.; Henze, Katrin; Woehle, Christian; Gould, Sven B.; Yu, Re-Young; van der Giezen, Mark

    2012-01-01

    Summary: Major insights into the phylogenetic distribution, biochemistry, and evolutionary significance of organelles involved in ATP synthesis (energy metabolism) in eukaryotes that thrive in anaerobic environments for all or part of their life cycles have accrued in recent years. All known eukaryotic groups possess an organelle of mitochondrial origin, mapping the origin of mitochondria to the eukaryotic common ancestor, and genome sequence data are rapidly accumulating for eukaryotes that possess anaerobic mitochondria, hydrogenosomes, or mitosomes. Here we review the available biochemical data on the enzymes and pathways that eukaryotes use in anaerobic energy metabolism and summarize the metabolic end products that they generate in their anaerobic habitats, focusing on the biochemical roles that their mitochondria play in anaerobic ATP synthesis. We present metabolic maps of compartmentalized energy metabolism for 16 well-studied species. There are currently no enzymes of core anaerobic energy metabolism that are specific to any of the six eukaryotic supergroup lineages; genes present in one supergroup are also found in at least one other supergroup. The gene distribution across lineages thus reflects the presence of anaerobic energy metabolism in the eukaryote common ancestor and differential loss during the specialization of some lineages to oxic niches, just as oxphos capabilities have been differentially lost in specialization to anoxic niches and the parasitic life-style. Some facultative anaerobes have retained both aerobic and anaerobic pathways. Diversified eukaryotic lineages have retained the same enzymes of anaerobic ATP synthesis, in line with geochemical data indicating low environmental oxygen levels while eukaryotes arose and diversified. PMID:22688819

  19. HIV-1 Replication and the Cellular Eukaryotic Translation Apparatus

    PubMed Central

    Guerrero, Santiago; Batisse, Julien; Libre, Camille; Bernacchi, Serena; Marquet, Roland; Paillart, Jean-Christophe

    2015-01-01

    Eukaryotic translation is a complex process composed of three main steps: initiation, elongation, and termination. During infections by RNA- and DNA-viruses, the eukaryotic translation machinery is used to assure optimal viral protein synthesis. Human immunodeficiency virus type I (HIV-1) uses several non-canonical pathways to translate its own proteins, such as leaky scanning, frameshifting, shunt, and cap-independent mechanisms. Moreover, HIV-1 modulates the host translation machinery by targeting key translation factors and overcomes different cellular obstacles that affect protein translation. In this review, we describe how HIV-1 proteins target several components of the eukaryotic translation machinery, which consequently improves viral translation and replication. PMID:25606970

  20. Widespread 3′-end uridylation in eukaryotic RNA viruses

    PubMed Central

    Huo, Yayun; Shen, Jianguo; Wu, Huanian; Zhang, Chao; Guo, Lihua; Yang, Jinguang; Li, Weimin

    2016-01-01

    RNA 3′ uridylation occurs pervasively in eukaryotes, but is poorly characterized in viruses. In this study, we demonstrate that a broad array of RNA viruses, including mycoviruses, plant viruses and animal viruses, possess a novel population of RNA species bearing nontemplated oligo(U) or (U)-rich tails, suggesting widespread 3′ uridylation in eukaryotic viruses. Given the biological relevance of 3′ uridylation to eukaryotic RNA degradation, we propose a conserved but as-yet-unknown mechanism in virus-host interaction. PMID:27151171

  1. Sequencing our way towards understanding global eukaryotic biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Bik, Holly M.; Porazinska, Dorota L.; Creer, Simon; Caporaso, J. Gregory; Knight, Rob; Thomas, W. Kelley

    2011-01-01

    Microscopic eukaryotes are abundant, diverse, and fill critical ecological roles across every ecosystem on earth, yet there is a well-recognized gap in our understanding of their global biodiversity. Fundamental advances in DNA sequencing and bioinformatics now allow accurate en masse biodiversity assessments of microscopic eukaryotes from environmental samples. Despite a promising outlook, the field of eukaryotic marker gene surveys faces significant challenges: how to generate data that is most useful to the community, especially in the face of evolving sequencing technology and bioinformatics pipelines, and how to incorporate an expanding number of target genes. PMID:22244672

  2. DNA Damage and Repair in Eukaryotic Cells

    PubMed Central

    Painter, R. B.

    1974-01-01

    Damage in DNA after irradiation can be classified into five kinds: base damage, single-strand breaks, double-strand breaks, DNA–DNA cross-linking, and DNA-protein cross-linking. Of these, repair of base damage is the best understood. In eukaryotes, at least three repair systems are known that can deal with base damage: photoreactivation, excision repair, and post-replication repair. Photoreactivation is specific for UV-induced damage and occurs widely throughout the biosphere, although it seems to be absent from placental mammals. Excision repair is present in prokaryotes and in animals but does not seem to be present in plants. Post-replication repair is poorly understood. Recent reports indicate that growing points in mammalian DNA simply skip past UV-induced lesions, leaving gaps in newly made DNA that are subsequently filled in by de novo synthesis. Evidence that this concept is oversimplified or incorrect is presented.—Single-strand breaks are induced by ionizing radiation but most cells can rapidly repair most or all of them, even after supralethal doses. The chemistry of the fragments formed when breaks are induced by ionizing radiation is complex and poorly understood. Therefore, the intermediate steps in the repair of single-strand breaks are unknown. Double-strand breaks and the two kinds of cross-linking have been studied very little and almost nothing is known about their mechanisms for repair.—The role of mammalian DNA repair in mutations is not known. Although there is evidence that defective repair can lead to cancer and/or premature aging in humans, the relationship between the molecular defects and the diseased state remains obscure. PMID:4442699

  3. Biosurfactant gene clusters in eukaryotes: regulation and biotechnological potential.

    PubMed

    Roelants, Sophie L K W; De Maeseneire, Sofie L; Ciesielska, Katarzyna; Van Bogaert, Inge N A; Soetaert, Wim

    2014-04-01

    Biosurfactants (BSs) are a class of secondary metabolites representing a wide variety of structures that can be produced from renewable feedstock by a wide variety of micro-organisms. They have (potential) applications in the medical world, personal care sector, mining processes, food industry, cosmetics, crop protection, pharmaceuticals, bio-remediation, household detergents, paper and pulp industry, textiles, paint industries, etc. Especially glycolipid BSs like sophorolipids (SLs), rhamnolipids (RLs), mannosylerythritol lipids (MELs) and cellobioselipids (CBLs) have been described to provide significant opportunities to (partially) replace chemical surfactants. The major two factors currently limiting the penetration of BSs into the market are firstly the limited structural variety and secondly the rather high production price linked with the productivity. One of the keys to resolve the above mentioned bottlenecks can be found in the genetic engineering of natural producers. This could not only result in more efficient (economical) recombinant producers, but also in a diversification of the spectrum of available BSs as such resolving both limiting factors at once. Unraveling the genetics behind the biosynthesis of these interesting biological compounds is indispensable for the tinkering, fine tuning and rearrangement of these biological pathways with the aim of obtaining higher yields and a more extensive structural variety. Therefore, this review focuses on recent developments in the investigation of the biosynthesis, genetics and regulation of some important members of the family of the eukaryotic glycolipid BSs (MELs, CBLs and SLs). Moreover, recent biotechnological achievements and the industrial potential of engineered strains are discussed.

  4. Biosurfactant gene clusters in eukaryotes: regulation and biotechnological potential.

    PubMed

    Roelants, Sophie L K W; De Maeseneire, Sofie L; Ciesielska, Katarzyna; Van Bogaert, Inge N A; Soetaert, Wim

    2014-04-01

    Biosurfactants (BSs) are a class of secondary metabolites representing a wide variety of structures that can be produced from renewable feedstock by a wide variety of micro-organisms. They have (potential) applications in the medical world, personal care sector, mining processes, food industry, cosmetics, crop protection, pharmaceuticals, bio-remediation, household detergents, paper and pulp industry, textiles, paint industries, etc. Especially glycolipid BSs like sophorolipids (SLs), rhamnolipids (RLs), mannosylerythritol lipids (MELs) and cellobioselipids (CBLs) have been described to provide significant opportunities to (partially) replace chemical surfactants. The major two factors currently limiting the penetration of BSs into the market are firstly the limited structural variety and secondly the rather high production price linked with the productivity. One of the keys to resolve the above mentioned bottlenecks can be found in the genetic engineering of natural producers. This could not only result in more efficient (economical) recombinant producers, but also in a diversification of the spectrum of available BSs as such resolving both limiting factors at once. Unraveling the genetics behind the biosynthesis of these interesting biological compounds is indispensable for the tinkering, fine tuning and rearrangement of these biological pathways with the aim of obtaining higher yields and a more extensive structural variety. Therefore, this review focuses on recent developments in the investigation of the biosynthesis, genetics and regulation of some important members of the family of the eukaryotic glycolipid BSs (MELs, CBLs and SLs). Moreover, recent biotechnological achievements and the industrial potential of engineered strains are discussed. PMID:24531239

  5. Structural genomics of eukaryotic targets at a laboratory scale.

    PubMed

    Busso, Didier; Poussin-Courmontagne, Pierre; Rosé, David; Ripp, Raymond; Litt, Alain; Thierry, Jean-Claude; Moras, Dino

    2005-01-01

    Structural genomics programs are distributed worldwide and funded by large institutions such as the NIH in United-States, the RIKEN in Japan or the European Commission through the SPINE network in Europe. Such initiatives, essentially managed by large consortia, led to technology and method developments at the different steps required to produce biological samples compatible with structural studies. Besides specific applications, method developments resulted mainly upon miniaturization and parallelization. The challenge that academic laboratories faces to pursue structural genomics programs is to produce, at a higher rate, protein samples. The Structural Biology and Genomics Department (IGBMC - Illkirch - France) is implicated in a structural genomics program of high eukaryotes whose goal is solving crystal structures of proteins and their complexes (including large complexes) related to human health and biotechnology. To achieve such a challenging goal, the Department has established a medium-throughput pipeline for producing protein samples suitable for structural biology studies. Here, we describe the setting up of our initiative from cloning to crystallization and we demonstrate that structural genomics may be manageable by academic laboratories by strategic investments in robotic and by adapting classical bench protocols and new developments, in particular in the field of protein expression, to parallelization.

  6. Actomyosin Ring Formation and Tension Generation in Eukaryotic Cytokinesis.

    PubMed

    Cheffings, Thomas H; Burroughs, Nigel J; Balasubramanian, Mohan K

    2016-08-01

    Cell division facilitated by a contractile ring is an almost universal feature across all branches of cellular life, with the notable exception of higher plants. In all organisms that use a contractile ring for cell division, the process of cytokinesis can be divided into four distinct stages. Firstly, the cell needs to specify a location at which to place the cell division ring to ensure proper separation of the cell contents into two daughter cells. Secondly, the cell needs to be able to transport all the necessary components to this region, and construct the cell division ring reliably and efficiently. Thirdly, the cell division ring needs to generate contractile stress in a regulated manner, to physically cleave the mother cell into two daughter cells. Finally, the ring must be disassembled to allow for the final abscission and separation of the daughter cells. In this review, we will discuss some of the proposed mechanisms by which eukaryotic cells are able to complete the first three of these stages. While there is a good understanding of the mechanisms of division site specification in most organisms, and the mechanisms of actomyosin ring formation are well studied in fission and budding yeast, there is relatively poor understanding of how actomyosin interactions are able to generate contractile stresses during ring constriction, although a number of models have been proposed. We also discuss a number of myosin motor-independent mechanisms that have been proposed to generate contractile stress in various organisms. PMID:27505246

  7. Snapshot of the Eukaryotic Gene Expression in Muskoxen Rumen—A Metatranscriptomic Approach

    PubMed Central

    O'Toole, Nicholas; Barboza, Perry S.; Ungerfeld, Emilio; Leigh, Mary Beth; Selinger, L. Brent; Butler, Greg; Tsang, Adrian; McAllister, Tim A.; Forster, Robert J.

    2011-01-01

    Background Herbivores rely on digestive tract lignocellulolytic microorganisms, including bacteria, fungi and protozoa, to derive energy and carbon from plant cell wall polysaccharides. Culture independent metagenomic studies have been used to reveal the genetic content of the bacterial species within gut microbiomes. However, the nature of the genes encoded by eukaryotic protozoa and fungi within these environments has not been explored using metagenomic or metatranscriptomic approaches. Methodology/Principal Findings In this study, a metatranscriptomic approach was used to investigate the functional diversity of the eukaryotic microorganisms within the rumen of muskoxen (Ovibos moschatus), with a focus on plant cell wall degrading enzymes. Polyadenylated RNA (mRNA) was sequenced on the Illumina Genome Analyzer II system and 2.8 gigabases of sequences were obtained and 59129 contigs assembled. Plant cell wall degrading enzyme modules including glycoside hydrolases, carbohydrate esterases and polysaccharide lyases were identified from over 2500 contigs. These included a number of glycoside hydrolase family 6 (GH6), GH48 and swollenin modules, which have rarely been described in previous gut metagenomic studies. Conclusions/Significance The muskoxen rumen metatranscriptome demonstrates a much higher percentage of cellulase enzyme discovery and an 8.7x higher rate of total carbohydrate active enzyme discovery per gigabase of sequence than previous rumen metagenomes. This study provides a snapshot of eukaryotic gene expression in the muskoxen rumen, and identifies a number of candidate genes coding for potentially valuable lignocellulolytic enzymes. PMID:21655220

  8. Secreted Cyclic Di-GMP Induces Stalk Cell Differentiation in the Eukaryote Dictyostelium discoideum

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Zhi-hui

    2015-01-01

    Cyclic di-GMP (c-di-GMP) is currently recognized as the most widely used intracellular signal molecule in prokaryotes, but roles in eukaryotes were only recently discovered. In the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum, c-di-GMP, produced by a prokaryote-type diguanylate cyclase, induces the differentiation of stalk cells, thereby enabling the formation of spore-bearing fruiting bodies. In this review, we summarize the currently known mechanisms that control the major life cycle transitions of Dictyostelium and focus particularly on the role of c-di-GMP in stalk formation. Stalk cell differentiation has characteristics of autophagic cell death, a process that also occurs in higher eukaryotes. We discuss the respective roles of c-di-GMP and of another signal molecule, differentiation-inducing factor 1, in autophagic cell death in vitro and in stalk formation in vivo. PMID:26013485

  9. Secreted Cyclic Di-GMP Induces Stalk Cell Differentiation in the Eukaryote Dictyostelium discoideum.

    PubMed

    Chen, Zhi-hui; Schaap, Pauline

    2016-01-01

    Cyclic di-GMP (c-di-GMP) is currently recognized as the most widely used intracellular signal molecule in prokaryotes, but roles in eukaryotes were only recently discovered. In the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum, c-di-GMP, produced by a prokaryote-type diguanylate cyclase, induces the differentiation of stalk cells, thereby enabling the formation of spore-bearing fruiting bodies. In this review, we summarize the currently known mechanisms that control the major life cycle transitions of Dictyostelium and focus particularly on the role of c-di-GMP in stalk formation. Stalk cell differentiation has characteristics of autophagic cell death, a process that also occurs in higher eukaryotes. We discuss the respective roles of c-di-GMP and of another signal molecule, differentiation-inducing factor 1, in autophagic cell death in vitro and in stalk formation in vivo. PMID:26013485

  10. Secreted Cyclic Di-GMP Induces Stalk Cell Differentiation in the Eukaryote Dictyostelium discoideum.

    PubMed

    Chen, Zhi-hui; Schaap, Pauline

    2016-01-01

    Cyclic di-GMP (c-di-GMP) is currently recognized as the most widely used intracellular signal molecule in prokaryotes, but roles in eukaryotes were only recently discovered. In the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum, c-di-GMP, produced by a prokaryote-type diguanylate cyclase, induces the differentiation of stalk cells, thereby enabling the formation of spore-bearing fruiting bodies. In this review, we summarize the currently known mechanisms that control the major life cycle transitions of Dictyostelium and focus particularly on the role of c-di-GMP in stalk formation. Stalk cell differentiation has characteristics of autophagic cell death, a process that also occurs in higher eukaryotes. We discuss the respective roles of c-di-GMP and of another signal molecule, differentiation-inducing factor 1, in autophagic cell death in vitro and in stalk formation in vivo.

  11. Evolution of prokaryote and eukaryote lines inferred from sequence evidence

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hunt, L. T.; George, D. G.; Yeh, L.-S.; Dayhoff, M. O.

    1984-01-01

    This paper describes the evolution of prokaryotes and early eukaryotes, including their symbiotic relationships, as inferred from phylogenetic trees of bacterial ferredoxin, 5S ribosomal RNA, ribulose-1,5-biphosphate carboxylase large chain, and mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase polypeptide II.

  12. Symbiosis as a General Principle in Eukaryotic Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Douglas, Angela E.

    2014-01-01

    Eukaryotes have evolved and diversified in the context of persistent colonization by non-pathogenic microorganisms. Various resident microorganisms provide a metabolic capability absent from the host, resulting in increased ecological amplitude and often evolutionary diversification of the host. Some microorganisms confer primary metabolic pathways, such as photosynthesis and cellulose degradation, and others expand the repertoire of secondary metabolism, including the synthesis of toxins that confer protection against natural enemies. A further route by which microorganisms affect host fitness arises from their modulation of the eukaryotic-signaling networks that regulate growth, development, behavior, and other functions. These effects are not necessarily based on interactions beneficial to the host, but can be a consequence of either eukaryotic utilization of microbial products as cues or host–microbial conflict. By these routes, eukaryote–microbial interactions play an integral role in the function and evolutionary diversification of eukaryotes. PMID:24492707

  13. Eukaryotic origins: How and when was the mitochondrion acquired?

    PubMed

    Poole, Anthony M; Gribaldo, Simonetta

    2014-12-01

    Comparative genomics has revealed that the last eukaryotic common ancestor possessed the hallmark cellular architecture of modern eukaryotes. However, the remarkable success of such analyses has created a dilemma. If key eukaryotic features are ancestral to this group, then establishing the relative timing of their origins becomes difficult. In discussions of eukaryote origins, special significance has been placed on the timing of mitochondrial acquisition. In one view, mitochondrial acquisition was the trigger for eukaryogenesis. Others argue that development of phagocytosis was a prerequisite to acquisition. Results from comparative genomics and molecular phylogeny are often invoked to support one or the other scenario. We show here that the associations between specific cell biological models of eukaryogenesis and evolutionary genomic data are not as strong as many suppose. Disentangling these eliminates many of the arguments that polarize current debate.

  14. The structure and function of the eukaryotic ribosome.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Daniel N; Doudna Cate, Jamie H

    2012-05-01

    Structures of the bacterial ribosome have provided a framework for understanding universal mechanisms of protein synthesis. However, the eukaryotic ribosome is much larger than it is in bacteria, and its activity is fundamentally different in many key ways. Recent cryo-electron microscopy reconstructions and X-ray crystal structures of eukaryotic ribosomes and ribosomal subunits now provide an unprecedented opportunity to explore mechanisms of eukaryotic translation and its regulation in atomic detail. This review describes the X-ray crystal structures of the Tetrahymena thermophila 40S and 60S subunits and the Saccharomyces cerevisiae 80S ribosome, as well as cryo-electron microscopy reconstructions of translating yeast and plant 80S ribosomes. Mechanistic questions about translation in eukaryotes that will require additional structural insights to be resolved are also presented.

  15. A Workflow for Studying Specialized Metabolism in Nonmodel Eukaryotic Organisms.

    PubMed

    Torrens-Spence, M P; Fallon, T R; Weng, J K

    2016-01-01

    Eukaryotes contain a diverse tapestry of specialized metabolites, many of which are of significant pharmaceutical and industrial importance to humans. Nevertheless, exploration of specialized metabolic pathways underlying specific chemical traits in nonmodel eukaryotic organisms has been technically challenging and historically lagged behind that of the bacterial systems. Recent advances in genomics, metabolomics, phylogenomics, and synthetic biology now enable a new workflow for interrogating unknown specialized metabolic systems in nonmodel eukaryotic hosts with greater efficiency and mechanistic depth. This chapter delineates such workflow by providing a collection of state-of-the-art approaches and tools, ranging from multiomics-guided candidate gene identification to in vitro and in vivo functional and structural characterization of specialized metabolic enzymes. As already demonstrated by several recent studies, this new workflow opens up a gateway into the largely untapped world of natural product biochemistry in eukaryotes. PMID:27480683

  16. Secretive ciliates and putative asexuality in microbial eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Dunthorn, Micah; Katz, Laura A

    2010-05-01

    Facultative sexuality is assumed to have occurred in the ancestor of all extant eukaryotes, but the distribution and maintenance of sex among microbial eukaryotes is still under debate. In this paper, we address the purported asexuality in colpodean ciliates as an exemplary lineage. Colpodeans are a primarily terrestrial clade thought to have arisen up to 900 MYA and contain one known derived sexual species. We conclude that the putative asexuality of this lineage is an observational artifact. We suggest that the same might hold for other microbial eukaryotes, and that many are secretively sexual as well. Theoretical work from the distantly related plants and animals suggests that both the evolutionary success of ancient asexuals and the reversal of the loss of sex are highly unlikely, further suggesting that colpodeans are secretively sexual. However, it remains to be seen to what extent sexual theories and predictions derived from macro-organismic lineages apply also to microbial eukaryotes.

  17. Evaluating genome-scale approaches to eukaryotic DNA replication

    PubMed Central

    Gilbert, David M.

    2010-01-01

    Mechanisms regulating where and when eukaryotic DNA replication initiates remain a mystery. Recently, genome-scale methods have been brought to bear on this problem. The identification of replication origins and their associated proteins in yeasts is a well-integrated investigative tool, but corresponding data sets from multicellular organisms are scarce. By contrast, standardized protocols for evaluating replication timing have generated informative data sets for most eukaryotic systems. Here, I summarize the genome-scale methods that are most frequently used to analyse replication in eukaryotes, the kinds of questions each method can address and the technical hurdles that must be overcome to gain a complete understanding of the nature of eukaryotic replication origins. PMID:20811343

  18. Structural and functional hierarchy of eukaryotic cilia and flagella.

    PubMed

    Omoto, C K

    1995-01-01

    There are now a variety of methods to investigate the morphofunctional aspects of eukaryotic cilia and cilia. These methods are useful for investigating the basic mechanism of eukaryotic axonemal mechanochemical function and understanding the function and interaction of its components. It is clear that the complex structure of eukaryotic axoneme requires the combination of all these techniques to unravel its mystery. The compositionally simple in vitro microtubule assays are crucial in investigating the functions of different dyneins within an axoneme. However, because such assays do not include other components of the axoneme and the important mechanical feedback present in a beating axoneme, reactivation of the entire structure will continue to play a basic role in the morphofunctional study of eukaryotic axonemes.

  19. The Eukaryotic Tree of Life from a Global Phylogenomic Perspective

    PubMed Central

    Burki, Fabien

    2014-01-01

    Molecular phylogenetics has revolutionized our knowledge of the eukaryotic tree of life. With the advent of genomics, a new discipline of phylogenetics has emerged: phylogenomics. This method uses large alignments of tens to hundreds of genes to reconstruct evolutionary histories. This approach has led to the resolution of ancient and contentious relationships, notably between the building blocks of the tree (the supergroups), and allowed to place in the tree enigmatic yet important protist lineages for understanding eukaryote evolution. Here, I discuss the pros and cons of phylogenomics and review the eukaryotic supergroups in light of earlier work that laid the foundation for the current view of the tree, including the position of the root. I conclude by presenting a picture of eukaryote evolution, summarizing the most recent progress in assembling the global tree. PMID:24789819

  20. Mitochondrial genome evolution and the origin of eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Lang, B F; Gray, M W; Burger, G

    1999-01-01

    Recent results from ancestral (minimally derived) protists testify to the tremendous diversity of the mitochondrial genome in various eukaryotic lineages, but also reinforce the view that mitochondria, descendants of an endosymbiotic alpha-Proteobacterium, arose only once in evolution. The serial endosymbiosis theory, currently the most popular hypothesis to explain the origin of mitochondria, postulates the capture of an alpha-proteobacterial endosymbiont by a nucleus-containing eukaryotic host resembling extant amitochondriate protists. New sequence data have challenged this scenario, instead raising the possibility that the origin of the mitochondrion was coincident with, and contributed substantially to, the origin of the nuclear genome of the eukaryotic cell. Defining more precisely the alpha-proteobacterial ancestry of the mitochondrial genome, and the contribution of the endosymbiotic event to the nuclear genome, will be essential for a full understanding of the origin and evolution of the eukaryotic cell as a whole.

  1. Eukaryote polyphosphate kinases: is the 'Kornberg' complex ubiquitous?

    PubMed

    Hooley, Paul; Whitehead, Michael P; Brown, Michael R W

    2008-12-01

    Polyphosphate (poly P) is a polymer of up to several hundred phosphate residues and is important to a variety of cell processes. The main poly P synthetic enzyme in many bacteria is poly P kinase 1 (PPK1), which until recently had been detected among eukaryotes in some protists only. There is now evidence for the presence in several other eukaryotes of PPK1 homologues and also a second bacteria-type enzyme, PPK2. The latest genome databases reveal that the 'Kornberg' enzyme complex of three actin-related proteins, termed DdPPK2 in Dictyostelium discoideum, might also be ubiquitous in eukaryotes. Owing to the intimate association of poly P synthesis with the formation of structural fibres, this ubiquity indicates a central role for this molecule in the evolution of eukaryotic cells.

  2. Ribosomal RNA sequence suggests microsporidia are extremely ancient eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Vossbrinck, C R; Maddox, J V; Friedman, S; Debrunner-Vossbrinck, B A; Woese, C R

    The microsporidia are a group of unusual, obligately parasitic protists that infect a great variety of other eukaryotes, including vertebrates, arthropods, molluscs, annelids, nematodes, cnidaria and even various ciliates, myxosporidia and gregarines. They possess a number of unusual cytological and molecular characteristics. Their nuclear division is considered to be primitive, they have no mitochondria, their ribosomes and ribosomal RNAs are reported to be of prokaryotic size and their large ribosomal subunit contains no 5.8S rRNA. The uniqueness of the microsporidia may reflect their phylogenetic position, because comparative sequence analysis shows that the small subunit rRNA of the microsporidium Vairimorpha necatrix is more unlike those of other eukaryotes than any known eukaryote 18S rRNA sequence. We conclude that the lineage leading to microsporidia branched very early from that leading to other eukaryotes.

  3. Structural diversity of eukaryotic small subunit ribosomal RNAs. Evolutionary implications.

    PubMed

    Sogin, M L; Gunderson, J H

    1987-01-01

    The phylogenetic diversity of the eukaryotic kingdom was assessed by comparing the structural and evolutionary diversity of 18-20S ribosomal RNA genes. The coding regions for cytoplasmic small subunit ribosomal RNA genes vary in length from 1753 to 2305 nucleotides, and they appear to be evolutionary mosaics in which highly and partially conserved sequences are interspersed among regions that display very high rates of genetic drift. Structural similarities between these gene sequences were used to establish a phylogenetic framework for the eukaryotes. The extent of sequence variation within the eukaryotes exceeds that displayed within the eubacterial or archaebacterial lines of descent. The kinetoplastids and euglenoids represent the earliest branchings among the eukaryotes. These branchings preceded the divergence of lineages leading to the slime molds and apicomplexans and far antedate a radiative period that gave rise to the plants, animals, fungi, and other protists.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-08-18

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

  5. Massive expansion of the calpain gene family in unicellular eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Calpains are Ca2+-dependent cysteine proteases that participate in a range of crucial cellular processes. Dysfunction of these enzymes may cause, for instance, life-threatening diseases in humans, the loss of sex determination in nematodes and embryo lethality in plants. Although the calpain family is well characterized in animal and plant model organisms, there is a great lack of knowledge about these genes in unicellular eukaryote species (i.e. protists). Here, we study the distribution and evolution of calpain genes in a wide range of eukaryote genomes from major branches in the tree of life. Results Our investigations reveal 24 types of protein domains that are combined with the calpain-specific catalytic domain CysPc. In total we identify 41 different calpain domain architectures, 28 of these domain combinations have not been previously described. Based on our phylogenetic inferences, we propose that at least four calpain variants were established in the early evolution of eukaryotes, most likely before the radiation of all the major supergroups of eukaryotes. Many domains associated with eukaryotic calpain genes can be found among eubacteria or archaebacteria but never in combination with the CysPc domain. Conclusions The analyses presented here show that ancient modules present in prokaryotes, and a few de novo eukaryote domains, have been assembled into many novel domain combinations along the evolutionary history of eukaryotes. Some of the new calpain genes show a narrow distribution in a few branches in the tree of life, likely representing lineage-specific innovations. Hence, the functionally important classical calpain genes found among humans and vertebrates make up only a tiny fraction of the calpain family. In fact, a massive expansion of the calpain family occurred by domain shuffling among unicellular eukaryotes and contributed to a wealth of functionally different genes. PMID:23020305

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-08-18

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

  7. Differences in soil micro-eukaryotic communities over soil pH gradients are strongly driven by parasites and saprotrophs.

    PubMed

    Dupont, A Ö C; Griffiths, R I; Bell, T; Bass, D

    2016-06-01

    A recent large-scale assessment of bacterial communities across a range of UK soil types showed that bacterial community structure was strongly determined by soil pH. We analysed a data set of eukaryotic 454 sequencing 18S rDNA from the surveyed samples and showed significant differences in eukaryotic assemblages according to pH class, mostly between low pH and higher pH soils. Soil eukaryote communities (per sample) differed most at the taxonomic rank approximating to order level. Taxonomies assigned with the Protist Ribosomal Reference and the Silva 119 databases were taxonomically inconsistent, mostly due to differing 18S annotations, although general structure and composition according to pH were coherent. A relatively small number of lineages, mostly putative parasitic protists and fungi, drive most differences between pH classes, with weaker contributions from bacterivores and autotrophs. Overall, soil parasites included a large diversity of alveolates, in particular apicomplexans. Phylogenetic analysis of alveolate lineages demonstrates a large diversity of unknown gregarines, novel perkinsids, coccidians, colpodellids and uncharacterized alveolates. Other novel and/or divergent lineages were revealed across the eukaryote tree of life. Our study provides an in-depth taxonomic evaluation of micro-eukaryotic diversity, and reveals novel lineages and insights into their relationships with environmental variables across soil gradients.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-02-01

    Horizontal gene transfer allows organisms to rapidly acquire adaptive traits. Although documented instances of horizontal gene transfer from bacteria to eukaryotes remain rare, bacteria represent a rich source of new functions potentially available for co-option. One benefit that genes of bacterial origin could provide to eukaryotes is the capacity to produce antibacterials, which have evolved in prokaryotes as the result of eons of interbacterial competition. The type VI secretion amidase effector (Tae) proteins are potent bacteriocidal enzymes that degrade the cell wall when delivered into competing bacterial cells by the type VI secretion system. Here we show that tae genes have been transferred to eukaryotes on at least six occasions, and that the resulting domesticated amidase effector (dae) genes have been preserved for hundreds of millions of years through purifying selection. We show that the dae genes acquired eukaryotic secretion signals, are expressed within recipient organisms, and encode active antibacterial toxins that possess substrate specificity matching extant Tae proteins of the same lineage. Finally, we show that a dae gene in the deer tick Ixodes scapularis limits proliferation of Borrelia burgdorferi, the aetiologic agent of Lyme disease. Our work demonstrates that a family of horizontally acquired toxins honed to mediate interbacterial antagonism confers previously undescribed antibacterial capacity to eukaryotes. We speculate that the selective pressure imposed by competition between bacteria has produced a reservoir of genes encoding diverse antimicrobial functions that are tailored for co-option by eukaryotic innate immune systems. PMID:25470067

  9. An Evolutionary Framework for Understanding the Origin of Eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Blackstone, Neil W

    2016-04-27

    Two major obstacles hinder the application of evolutionary theory to the origin of eukaryotes. The first is more apparent than real-the endosymbiosis that led to the mitochondrion is often described as "non-Darwinian" because it deviates from the incremental evolution championed by the modern synthesis. Nevertheless, endosymbiosis can be accommodated by a multi-level generalization of evolutionary theory, which Darwin himself pioneered. The second obstacle is more serious-all of the major features of eukaryotes were likely present in the last eukaryotic common ancestor thus rendering comparative methods ineffective. In addition to a multi-level theory, the development of rigorous, sequence-based phylogenetic and comparative methods represents the greatest achievement of modern evolutionary theory. Nevertheless, the rapid evolution of major features in the eukaryotic stem group requires the consideration of an alternative framework. Such a framework, based on the contingent nature of these evolutionary events, is developed and illustrated with three examples: the putative intron proliferation leading to the nucleus and the cell cycle; conflict and cooperation in the origin of eukaryotic bioenergetics; and the inter-relationship between aerobic metabolism, sterol synthesis, membranes, and sex. The modern synthesis thus provides sufficient scope to develop an evolutionary framework to understand the origin of eukaryotes.

  10. Ocean plankton. Eukaryotic plankton diversity in the sunlit ocean.

    PubMed

    de Vargas, Colomban; Audic, Stéphane; Henry, Nicolas; Decelle, Johan; Mahé, Frédéric; Logares, Ramiro; Lara, Enrique; Berney, Cédric; Le Bescot, Noan; Probert, Ian; Carmichael, Margaux; Poulain, Julie; Romac, Sarah; Colin, Sébastien; Aury, Jean-Marc; Bittner, Lucie; Chaffron, Samuel; Dunthorn, Micah; Engelen, Stefan; Flegontova, Olga; Guidi, Lionel; Horák, Aleš; Jaillon, Olivier; Lima-Mendez, Gipsi; Lukeš, Julius; Malviya, Shruti; Morard, Raphael; Mulot, Matthieu; Scalco, Eleonora; Siano, Raffaele; Vincent, Flora; Zingone, Adriana; Dimier, Céline; Picheral, Marc; Searson, Sarah; Kandels-Lewis, Stefanie; Acinas, Silvia G; Bork, Peer; Bowler, Chris; Gorsky, Gabriel; Grimsley, Nigel; Hingamp, Pascal; Iudicone, Daniele; Not, Fabrice; Ogata, Hiroyuki; Pesant, Stephane; Raes, Jeroen; Sieracki, Michael E; Speich, Sabrina; Stemmann, Lars; Sunagawa, Shinichi; Weissenbach, Jean; Wincker, Patrick; Karsenti, Eric

    2015-05-22

    Marine plankton support global biological and geochemical processes. Surveys of their biodiversity have hitherto been geographically restricted and have not accounted for the full range of plankton size. We assessed eukaryotic diversity from 334 size-fractionated photic-zone plankton communities collected across tropical and temperate oceans during the circumglobal Tara Oceans expedition. We analyzed 18S ribosomal DNA sequences across the intermediate plankton-size spectrum from the smallest unicellular eukaryotes (protists, >0.8 micrometers) to small animals of a few millimeters. Eukaryotic ribosomal diversity saturated at ~150,000 operational taxonomic units, about one-third of which could not be assigned to known eukaryotic groups. Diversity emerged at all taxonomic levels, both within the groups comprising the ~11,200 cataloged morphospecies of eukaryotic plankton and among twice as many other deep-branching lineages of unappreciated importance in plankton ecology studies. Most eukaryotic plankton biodiversity belonged to heterotrophic protistan groups, particularly those known to be parasites or symbiotic hosts. PMID:25999516

  11. Ocean plankton. Eukaryotic plankton diversity in the sunlit ocean.

    PubMed

    de Vargas, Colomban; Audic, Stéphane; Henry, Nicolas; Decelle, Johan; Mahé, Frédéric; Logares, Ramiro; Lara, Enrique; Berney, Cédric; Le Bescot, Noan; Probert, Ian; Carmichael, Margaux; Poulain, Julie; Romac, Sarah; Colin, Sébastien; Aury, Jean-Marc; Bittner, Lucie; Chaffron, Samuel; Dunthorn, Micah; Engelen, Stefan; Flegontova, Olga; Guidi, Lionel; Horák, Aleš; Jaillon, Olivier; Lima-Mendez, Gipsi; Lukeš, Julius; Malviya, Shruti; Morard, Raphael; Mulot, Matthieu; Scalco, Eleonora; Siano, Raffaele; Vincent, Flora; Zingone, Adriana; Dimier, Céline; Picheral, Marc; Searson, Sarah; Kandels-Lewis, Stefanie; Acinas, Silvia G; Bork, Peer; Bowler, Chris; Gorsky, Gabriel; Grimsley, Nigel; Hingamp, Pascal; Iudicone, Daniele; Not, Fabrice; Ogata, Hiroyuki; Pesant, Stephane; Raes, Jeroen; Sieracki, Michael E; Speich, Sabrina; Stemmann, Lars; Sunagawa, Shinichi; Weissenbach, Jean; Wincker, Patrick; Karsenti, Eric

    2015-05-22

    Marine plankton support global biological and geochemical processes. Surveys of their biodiversity have hitherto been geographically restricted and have not accounted for the full range of plankton size. We assessed eukaryotic diversity from 334 size-fractionated photic-zone plankton communities collected across tropical and temperate oceans during the circumglobal Tara Oceans expedition. We analyzed 18S ribosomal DNA sequences across the intermediate plankton-size spectrum from the smallest unicellular eukaryotes (protists, >0.8 micrometers) to small animals of a few millimeters. Eukaryotic ribosomal diversity saturated at ~150,000 operational taxonomic units, about one-third of which could not be assigned to known eukaryotic groups. Diversity emerged at all taxonomic levels, both within the groups comprising the ~11,200 cataloged morphospecies of eukaryotic plankton and among twice as many other deep-branching lineages of unappreciated importance in plankton ecology studies. Most eukaryotic plankton biodiversity belonged to heterotrophic protistan groups, particularly those known to be parasites or symbiotic hosts.

  12. Determination and Inference of Eukaryotic Transcription Factor Sequence Specificity

    PubMed Central

    Albu, Mihai; Cote, Atina; Montenegro-Montero, Alejandro; Drewe, Philipp; Najafabadi, Hamed S.; Lambert, Samuel A.; Mann, Ishminder; Cook, Kate; Zheng, Hong; Goity, Alejandra; van Bakel, Harm; Lozano, Jean-Claude; Galli, Mary; Lewsey, Mathew; Huang, Eryong; Mukherjee, Tuhin; Chen, Xiaoting; Reece-Hoyes, John S.; Govindarajan, Sridhar; Shaulsky, Gad; Walhout, Albertha J.M.; Bouget, François-Yves; Ratsch, Gunnar; Larrondo, Luis F.; Ecker, Joseph R.; Hughes, Timothy R.

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY Transcription factor (TF) DNA sequence preferences direct their regulatory activity, but are currently known for only ~1% of all eukaryotic TFs. Broadly sampling DNA-binding domain (DBD) types from multiple eukaryotic clades, we determined DNA sequence preferences for >1,000 TFs encompassing 54 different DBD classes from 131 diverse eukaryotes. We find that closely related DBDs almost always have very similar DNA sequence preferences, enabling inference of motifs for ~34% of the ~170,000 known or predicted eukaryotic TFs. Sequences matching both measured and inferred motifs are enriched in ChIP-seq peaks and upstream of transcription start sites in diverse eukaryotic lineages. SNPs defining expression quantitative trait loci in Arabidopsis promoters are also enriched for predicted TF binding sites. Importantly, our motif “library” (http://cisbp.ccbr.utoronto.ca) can be used to identify specific TFs whose binding may be altered by human disease risk alleles. These data present a powerful resource for mapping transcriptional networks across eukaryotes. PMID:25215497

  13. Evaluating Support for the Current Classification of Eukaryotic Diversity

    PubMed Central

    Parfrey, Laura Wegener; Barbero, Erika; Lasser, Elyse; Dunthorn, Micah; Bhattacharya, Debashish; Patterson, David J; Katz, Laura A

    2006-01-01

    Perspectives on the classification of eukaryotic diversity have changed rapidly in recent years, as the four eukaryotic groups within the five-kingdom classification—plants, animals, fungi, and protists—have been transformed through numerous permutations into the current system of six “supergroups.” The intent of the supergroup classification system is to unite microbial and macroscopic eukaryotes based on phylogenetic inference. This supergroup approach is increasing in popularity in the literature and is appearing in introductory biology textbooks. We evaluate the stability and support for the current six-supergroup classification of eukaryotes based on molecular genealogies. We assess three aspects of each supergroup: (1) the stability of its taxonomy, (2) the support for monophyly (single evolutionary origin) in molecular analyses targeting a supergroup, and (3) the support for monophyly when a supergroup is included as an out-group in phylogenetic studies targeting other taxa. Our analysis demonstrates that supergroup taxonomies are unstable and that support for groups varies tremendously, indicating that the current classification scheme of eukaryotes is likely premature. We highlight several trends contributing to the instability and discuss the requirements for establishing robust clades within the eukaryotic tree of life. PMID:17194223

  14. An Evolutionary Framework for Understanding the Origin of Eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Blackstone, Neil W.

    2016-01-01

    Two major obstacles hinder the application of evolutionary theory to the origin of eukaryotes. The first is more apparent than real—the endosymbiosis that led to the mitochondrion is often described as “non-Darwinian” because it deviates from the incremental evolution championed by the modern synthesis. Nevertheless, endosymbiosis can be accommodated by a multi-level generalization of evolutionary theory, which Darwin himself pioneered. The second obstacle is more serious—all of the major features of eukaryotes were likely present in the last eukaryotic common ancestor thus rendering comparative methods ineffective. In addition to a multi-level theory, the development of rigorous, sequence-based phylogenetic and comparative methods represents the greatest achievement of modern evolutionary theory. Nevertheless, the rapid evolution of major features in the eukaryotic stem group requires the consideration of an alternative framework. Such a framework, based on the contingent nature of these evolutionary events, is developed and illustrated with three examples: the putative intron proliferation leading to the nucleus and the cell cycle; conflict and cooperation in the origin of eukaryotic bioenergetics; and the inter-relationship between aerobic metabolism, sterol synthesis, membranes, and sex. The modern synthesis thus provides sufficient scope to develop an evolutionary framework to understand the origin of eukaryotes. PMID:27128953

  15. Evaluating support for the current classification of eukaryotic diversity.

    PubMed

    Parfrey, Laura Wegener; Barbero, Erika; Lasser, Elyse; Dunthorn, Micah; Bhattacharya, Debashish; Patterson, David J; Katz, Laura A

    2006-12-01

    Perspectives on the classification of eukaryotic diversity have changed rapidly in recent years, as the four eukaryotic groups within the five-kingdom classification--plants, animals, fungi, and protists--have been transformed through numerous permutations into the current system of six "supergroups." The intent of the supergroup classification system is to unite microbial and macroscopic eukaryotes based on phylogenetic inference. This supergroup approach is increasing in popularity in the literature and is appearing in introductory biology textbooks. We evaluate the stability and support for the current six-supergroup classification of eukaryotes based on molecular genealogies. We assess three aspects of each supergroup: (1) the stability of its taxonomy, (2) the support for monophyly (single evolutionary origin) in molecular analyses targeting a supergroup, and (3) the support for monophyly when a supergroup is included as an out-group in phylogenetic studies targeting other taxa. Our analysis demonstrates that supergroup taxonomies are unstable and that support for groups varies tremendously, indicating that the current classification scheme of eukaryotes is likely premature. We highlight several trends contributing to the instability and discuss the requirements for establishing robust clades within the eukaryotic tree of life.

  16. Homeodomain proteins belong to the ancestral molecular toolkit of eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Derelle, Romain; Lopez, Philippe; Le Guyader, Hervé; Manuel, Michaël

    2007-01-01

    Multicellular organization arose several times by convergence during the evolution of eukaryotes (e.g., in terrestrial plants, several lineages of "algae," fungi, and metazoans). To reconstruct the evolutionary transitions between unicellularity and multicellularity, we need a proper understanding of the origin and diversification of regulatory molecules governing the construction of a multicellular organism in these various lineages. Homeodomain (HD) proteins offer a paradigm for studying such issues, because in multicellular eukaryotes, like animals, fungi and plants, these transcription factors are extensively used in fundamental developmental processes and are highly diversified. A number of large eukaryote lineages are exclusively unicellular, however, and it remains unclear to what extent this condition reflects their primitive lack of "good building blocks" such as the HD proteins. Taking advantage from the recent burst of sequence data from a wide variety of eukaryote taxa, we show here that HD-containing transcription factors were already existing and diversified (in at least two main classes) in the last common eukaryote ancestor. Although the family was retained and independently expanded in the multicellular taxa, it was lost in several lineages of unicellular parasites or intracellular symbionts. Our findings are consistent with the idea that the common ancestor of eukaryotes was complex in molecular terms, and already possessed many of the regulatory molecules, which later favored the multiple convergent acquisition of multicellularity.

  17. Widespread presence of "bacterial-like" PPP phosphatases in eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Andreeva, Alexandra V; Kutuzov, Mikhail A

    2004-01-01

    Background In eukaryotes, PPP (protein phosphatase P) family is one of the two known protein phosphatase families specific for Ser and Thr. The role of PPP phosphatases in multiple signaling pathways in eukaryotic cell has been extensively studied. Unlike eukaryotic PPP phosphatases, bacterial members of the family have broad substrate specificity or may even be Tyr-specific. Moreover, one group of bacterial PPPs are diadenosine tetraphosphatases, indicating that bacterial PPP phosphatases may not necessarily function as protein phosphatases. Results We describe the presence in eukaryotes of three groups of expressed genes encoding "non-conventional" phosphatases of the PPP family. These enzymes are more closely related to bacterial PPP phosphatases than to the known eukaryotic members of the family. One group, found exclusively in land plants, is most closely related to PPP phosphatases from some α-Proteobacteria, including Rhizobiales, Rhodobacterales and Rhodospirillaceae. This group is therefore termed Rhizobiales / Rhodobacterales / Rhodospirillaceae-like phosphatases, or Rhilphs. Phosphatases of the other group are found in Viridiplantae, Rhodophyta, Trypanosomatidae, Plasmodium and some fungi. They are structurally related to phosphatases from psychrophilic bacteria Shewanella and Colwellia, and are termed Shewanella-like phosphatases, or Shelphs. Phosphatases of the third group are distantly related to ApaH, bacterial diadenosine tetraphosphatases, and are termed ApaH-like phosphatases, or Alphs. Patchy distribution of Alphs in animals, plants, fungi, diatoms and kinetoplasts suggests that these phosphatases were present in the common ancestor of eukaryotes but were independently lost in many lineages. Rhilphs, Shelphs and Alphs form PPP clades, as divergent from "conventional" eukaryotic PPP phosphatases as they are from each other and from major bacterial clades. In addition, comparison of primary structures revealed a previously unrecognised (I

  18. Evolutionary Advantage Conferred by an Eukaryote-to-Eukaryote Gene Transfer Event in Wine Yeasts

    PubMed Central

    Marsit, Souhir; Mena, Adriana; Bigey, Frédéric; Sauvage, François-Xavier; Couloux, Arnaud; Guy, Julie; Legras, Jean-Luc; Barrio, Eladio; Dequin, Sylvie; Galeote, Virginie

    2015-01-01

    Although an increasing number of horizontal gene transfers have been reported in eukaryotes, experimental evidence for their adaptive value is lacking. Here, we report the recent transfer of a 158-kb genomic region between Torulaspora microellipsoides and Saccharomyces cerevisiae wine yeasts or closely related strains. This genomic region has undergone several rearrangements in S. cerevisiae strains, including gene loss and gene conversion between two tandemly duplicated FOT genes encoding oligopeptide transporters. We show that FOT genes confer a strong competitive advantage during grape must fermentation by increasing the number and diversity of oligopeptides that yeast can utilize as a source of nitrogen, thereby improving biomass formation, fermentation efficiency, and cell viability. Thus, the acquisition of FOT genes has favored yeast adaptation to the nitrogen-limited wine fermentation environment. This finding indicates that anthropic environments offer substantial ecological opportunity for evolutionary diversification through gene exchange between distant yeast species. PMID:25750179

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  20. Molecular structure of yeast RNA polymerase III: demonstration of the tripartite transcriptive system in lower eukaryotes.

    PubMed Central

    Valenzuela, P; Hager, G L; Weinberg, F; Rutter, W J

    1976-01-01

    Homogeneous RNA polymerase III (RNA nucleotidyltransferase III) has been obtained from yeast. The subunit composition of the enzyme was examined by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis in the presence of sodium dodecyl sulfate. The enzyme is composed of 12 putative subunits with molecular weights 160,000, 128,000, 82,000, 41,000, 40,500, 37,000, 34,000, 28,000, 24,000, 20,000, 14,500, and 11,000. The high-molecular-weight subunits and several of the smaller subunits of yeast RNA polymerase III are clearly different from those of enzymes I and II, indicating a distinct molecular structure. However, the molecular weights of some of the small subunits (41,000, 28,000, 24,000, and 14,500) appear to be identical to those of polymerases I and II. Thus, it is possible that the three classes of enzymes in yeast have some common subunits. As in other eukaryotes, yeast polymerase II is inhibited by relatively low concentrations of alpha-amanitin; however, contrary to what has been found in higher eukaryotes, yeast polymerase III is resistant (up to 2 mg/ml) to alpha-amanitin, while yeast polymerase I is sensitive to high concentrations of the drug (50% inhibition at 0.3 mg/ml). These results establish the existence of RNA polymerase III in yeast and provide a structural basis for the discrimination of the three functional polymerases in eukaryotes. Images PMID:772675

  1. Initiator Recognition in a Primitive Eukaryote: IBP39, an Initiator-Binding Protein from Trichomonas vaginalis

    PubMed Central

    Liston, David R.; Lau, Audrey O. T.; Ortiz, Diana; Smale, Stephen T.; Johnson, Patricia J.

    2001-01-01

    While considerable progress has been made in understanding the mechanisms of transcription in higher eukaryotes, transcription in single-celled, primitive eukaryotes remains poorly understood. Promoters of protein-encoding genes in the parasitic protist Trichomonas vaginalis, which represents one of the deepest-branching eukaryotic lineages, have a bipartite structure with gene-specific regulatory elements and a conserved core promoter encompassing the transcription start site. Core promoters in T. vaginalis appear to consist solely of a highly conserved initiator (Inr) element that is both a structural and a functional homologue of its metazoan counterpart. Using DNA affinity chromatography, we have isolated an Inr-binding protein from T. vaginalis. Cloning of the gene encoding the Inr binding protein identified a novel 39-kDa protein (IBP39). We show that IBP39 binds to both double and single Inr motifs found in T. vaginalis genes and that binding requires the conserved nucleotides necessary for Inr function in vivo. Analyses of the cloned IBP39 gene revealed no homology at the protein sequence level with identified proteins in other organisms or the presence of known DNA-binding domains. The relationship between IBP39 and Inr-binding proteins in metazoa presents interesting evolutionary questions. PMID:11604521

  2. Pan-eukaryote ITS2 homologies revealed by RNA secondary structure

    PubMed Central

    Coleman, Annette W.

    2007-01-01

    For evolutionary comparisons, phylogenetics and evaluation of potential interbreeding taxa of a species, various loci have served for animals and plants and protistans. One [second internal transcribed spacer (ITS2) of the nuclear ribosomal DNA] is highly suitable for all. Its sequence is species specific. It has already been used extensively and very successfully for plants and some protistans, and a few animals (where historically, the mitochondrial genes have dominated species studies). Despite initial impressions that ITS2 is too variable, it has proven to provide useful biological information at higher taxonomic levels, even across all eukaryotes, thanks to the conserved aspects of its transcript secondary structure. The review of all eukaryote groups reveals that ITS2 is expandable, but always retains in its RNA transcript a common core structure of two helices with hallmark characteristics important for ribosomal RNA processing. This aspect of its RNA transcript secondary structure can rescue difficult alignment problems, making the ITS2 a more powerful tool for phylogenetics. Equally important, the recognition of eukaryote-wide homology regions provides extensive and detailed information to test experimental studies of ribosomal rRNA processing. PMID:17459886

  3. Evolution of early eukaryotic cells: genomes, proteomes, and compartments.

    PubMed

    Bogorad, Lawrence

    2008-01-01

    Eukaryotes arose from an endosymbiotic association of an alpha-proteobacterium-like organism (the ancestor of mitochondria) with a host cell (lacking mitochondria or plastids). Plants arose by the addition of a cyanobacterium-like endosymbiont (the ancestor of plastids) to the two-member association. Each member of the association brought a unique internal environment and a unique genome. Analyses of recently acquired genomic sequences with newly developed algorithms have revealed (a) that the number of endosymbiont genes that remain in eukaryotic cells-principally in the nucleus-is surprisingly large, (b) that protein products of a large number of genes (or their descendents) that entered the association in the genome of the host are now directed to an organelle derived from an endosymbiont, and (c) that protein products of genes traceable to endosymbiont genomes are directed to the nucleo-cytoplasmic compartment. Consideration of these remarkable findings has led to the present suggestion that contemporary eukaryotic cells evolved through continual chance relocation and testing of genes as well as combinations of gene products and biochemical processes in each unique cell compartment derived from a member of the eukaryotic association. Most of these events occurred during about 300 million years, or so, before contemporary forms of eukaryotic cells appear in the fossil record; they continue today. PMID:17912611

  4. The Sec translocon mediated protein transport in prokaryotes and eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Denks, Kärt; Vogt, Andreas; Sachelaru, Ilie; Petriman, Narcis-Adrian; Kudva, Renuka; Koch, Hans-Georg

    2014-01-01

    Protein transport via the Sec translocon represents an evolutionary conserved mechanism for delivering cytosolically-synthesized proteins to extra-cytosolic compartments. The Sec translocon has a three-subunit core, termed Sec61 in Eukaryotes and SecYEG in Bacteria. It is located in the endoplasmic reticulum of Eukaryotes and in the cytoplasmic membrane of Bacteria where it constitutes a channel that can be activated by multiple partner proteins. These partner proteins determine the mechanism of polypeptide movement across the channel. During SRP-dependent co-translational targeting, the ribosome threads the nascent protein directly into the Sec channel. This pathway is in Bacteria mainly dedicated for membrane proteins but in Eukaryotes also employed by secretory proteins. The alternative pathway, leading to post-translational translocation across the Sec translocon engages an ATP-dependent pushing mechanism by the motor protein SecA in Bacteria and a ratcheting mechanism by the lumenal chaperone BiP in Eukaryotes. Protein transport and biogenesis is also assisted by additional proteins at the lateral gate of SecY/Sec61α and in the lumen of the endoplasmic reticulum or in the periplasm of bacterial cells. The modular assembly enables the Sec complex to transport a vast array of substrates. In this review we summarize recent biochemical and structural information on the prokaryotic and eukaryotic Sec translocons and we describe the remarkably complex interaction network of the Sec complexes.

  5. Nitrate Storage and Dissimilatory Nitrate Reduction by Eukaryotic Microbes.

    PubMed

    Kamp, Anja; Høgslund, Signe; Risgaard-Petersen, Nils; Stief, Peter

    2015-01-01

    The microbial nitrogen cycle is one of the most complex and environmentally important element cycles on Earth and has long been thought to be mediated exclusively by prokaryotic microbes. Rather recently, it was discovered that certain eukaryotic microbes are able to store nitrate intracellularly and use it for dissimilatory nitrate reduction in the absence of oxygen. The paradigm shift that this entailed is ecologically significant because the eukaryotes in question comprise global players like diatoms, foraminifers, and fungi. This review article provides an unprecedented overview of nitrate storage and dissimilatory nitrate reduction by diverse marine eukaryotes placed into an eco-physiological context. The advantage of intracellular nitrate storage for anaerobic energy conservation in oxygen-depleted habitats is explained and the life style enabled by this metabolic trait is described. A first compilation of intracellular nitrate inventories in various marine sediments is presented, indicating that intracellular nitrate pools vastly exceed porewater nitrate pools. The relative contribution by foraminifers to total sedimentary denitrification is estimated for different marine settings, suggesting that eukaryotes may rival prokaryotes in terms of dissimilatory nitrate reduction. Finally, this review article sketches some evolutionary perspectives of eukaryotic nitrate metabolism and identifies open questions that need to be addressed in future investigations. PMID:26734001

  6. Evolutionary Ancestry of Eukaryotic Protein Kinases and Choline Kinases.

    PubMed

    Lai, Shenshen; Safaei, Javad; Pelech, Steven

    2016-03-01

    The reversible phosphorylation of proteins catalyzed by protein kinases in eukaryotes supports an important role for eukaryotic protein kinases (ePKs) in the emergence of nucleated cells in the third superkingdom of life. Choline kinases (ChKs) could also be critical in the early evolution of eukaryotes, because of their function in the biosynthesis of phosphatidylcholine, which is unique to eukaryotic membranes. However, the genomic origins of ePKs and ChKs are unclear. The high degeneracy of protein sequences and broad expansion of ePK families have made this fundamental question difficult to answer. In this study, we identified two class-I aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases with high similarities to consensus amino acid sequences of human protein-serine/threonine kinases. Comparisons of primary and tertiary structures supported that ePKs and ChKs evolved from a common ancestor related to glutaminyl aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases, which may have been one of the key factors in the successful of emergence of ancient eukaryotic cells from bacterial colonies.

  7. Archaeal "dark matter" and the origin of eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Williams, Tom A; Embley, T Martin

    2014-03-01

    Current hypotheses about the history of cellular life are mainly based on analyses of cultivated organisms, but these represent only a small fraction of extant biodiversity. The sequencing of new environmental lineages therefore provides an opportunity to test, revise, or reject existing ideas about the tree of life and the origin of eukaryotes. According to the textbook three domains hypothesis, the eukaryotes emerge as the sister group to a monophyletic Archaea. However, recent analyses incorporating better phylogenetic models and an improved sampling of the archaeal domain have generally supported the competing eocyte hypothesis, in which core genes of eukaryotic cells originated from within the Archaea, with important implications for eukaryogenesis. Given this trend, it was surprising that a recent analysis incorporating new genomes from uncultivated Archaea recovered a strongly supported three domains tree. Here, we show that this result was due in part to the use of a poorly fitting phylogenetic model and also to the inclusion by an automated pipeline of genes of putative bacterial origin rather than nucleocytosolic versions for some of the eukaryotes analyzed. When these issues were resolved, analyses including the new archaeal lineages placed core eukaryotic genes within the Archaea. These results are consistent with a number of recent studies in which improved archaeal sampling and better phylogenetic models agree in supporting the eocyte tree over the three domains hypothesis.

  8. Censusing marine eukaryotic diversity in the twenty-first century.

    PubMed

    Leray, Matthieu; Knowlton, Nancy

    2016-09-01

    The ocean constitutes one of the vastest and richest biomes on our planet. Most recent estimations, all based on indirect approaches, suggest that there are millions of marine eukaryotic species. Moreover, a large majority of these are small (less than 1 mm), cryptic and still unknown to science. However, this knowledge gap, caused by the lack of diagnostic morphological features in small organisms and the limited sampling of the global ocean, is currently being filled, thanks to new DNA-based approaches. The molecular technique of PCR amplification of homologous gene regions combined with high-throughput sequencing, routinely used to census unculturable prokaryotes, is now also being used to characterize whole communities of marine eukaryotes. Here, we review how this methodological advancement has helped to better quantify the magnitude and patterns of marine eukaryotic diversity, with an emphasis on taxonomic groups previously largely overlooked. We then discuss obstacles remaining to achieve a global understanding of marine eukaryotic diversity. In particular, we argue that 18S variable regions do not provide sufficient taxonomic resolution to census marine life, and suggest combining broad eukaryotic surveys targeting the 18S rRNA region with more taxon-focused analyses of hypervariable regions to improve our understanding of the diversity of species, the functional units of marine ecosystems.This article is part of the themed issue 'From DNA barcodes to biomes'. PMID:27481783

  9. Censusing marine eukaryotic diversity in the twenty-first century.

    PubMed

    Leray, Matthieu; Knowlton, Nancy

    2016-09-01

    The ocean constitutes one of the vastest and richest biomes on our planet. Most recent estimations, all based on indirect approaches, suggest that there are millions of marine eukaryotic species. Moreover, a large majority of these are small (less than 1 mm), cryptic and still unknown to science. However, this knowledge gap, caused by the lack of diagnostic morphological features in small organisms and the limited sampling of the global ocean, is currently being filled, thanks to new DNA-based approaches. The molecular technique of PCR amplification of homologous gene regions combined with high-throughput sequencing, routinely used to census unculturable prokaryotes, is now also being used to characterize whole communities of marine eukaryotes. Here, we review how this methodological advancement has helped to better quantify the magnitude and patterns of marine eukaryotic diversity, with an emphasis on taxonomic groups previously largely overlooked. We then discuss obstacles remaining to achieve a global understanding of marine eukaryotic diversity. In particular, we argue that 18S variable regions do not provide sufficient taxonomic resolution to census marine life, and suggest combining broad eukaryotic surveys targeting the 18S rRNA region with more taxon-focused analyses of hypervariable regions to improve our understanding of the diversity of species, the functional units of marine ecosystems.This article is part of the themed issue 'From DNA barcodes to biomes'.

  10. A search for extraterrestrial eukaryotes: physical and paleontological aspects.

    PubMed

    Chela-Flores, J

    1998-10-01

    Physical and biochemical aspects of a proposed search for extraterrestrial eukaryotes (SETE) are considered. Such a program should approach the distinction between a primitive eukaryote and an archaebacteria. The emphasis on gene silencing suggests a possible assay suitable for a robotic investigation of eukaryoticity, so as to be able to decide whether the first steps towards eukaryogenesis have been taken in an extraterrestrial planet, or satellite. The experiment would consist of searching for cellular division and the systematic related delay in replication of heterochromatic chromosome segments. It should be noticed that the direct search for a membrane-bounded set of chromosomes does not necessarily determine eukaryotic identity, as there are prokaryotes that have membrane-bounded nucleoids. A closer look at the protein fraction of chromatin (mainly histones) does not help either, as there are some eukaryotes that may lack histones; there are also some bacteria as well as archaebacteria with histone-like proteins in their nucleoids. Comments on the recent suggestion of possible environments for a SETE program are discussed: the deep crust of Mars, and the Jovian satellite Europa, provided the existence of an ocean under its ice-covered surface is confirmed by the current Galileo mission. PMID:9742730

  11. A search for extraterrestrial eukaryotes: physical and paleontological aspects.

    PubMed

    Chela-Flores, J

    1998-10-01

    Physical and biochemical aspects of a proposed search for extraterrestrial eukaryotes (SETE) are considered. Such a program should approach the distinction between a primitive eukaryote and an archaebacteria. The emphasis on gene silencing suggests a possible assay suitable for a robotic investigation of eukaryoticity, so as to be able to decide whether the first steps towards eukaryogenesis have been taken in an extraterrestrial planet, or satellite. The experiment would consist of searching for cellular division and the systematic related delay in replication of heterochromatic chromosome segments. It should be noticed that the direct search for a membrane-bounded set of chromosomes does not necessarily determine eukaryotic identity, as there are prokaryotes that have membrane-bounded nucleoids. A closer look at the protein fraction of chromatin (mainly histones) does not help either, as there are some eukaryotes that may lack histones; there are also some bacteria as well as archaebacteria with histone-like proteins in their nucleoids. Comments on the recent suggestion of possible environments for a SETE program are discussed: the deep crust of Mars, and the Jovian satellite Europa, provided the existence of an ocean under its ice-covered surface is confirmed by the current Galileo mission.

  12. Nitrate Storage and Dissimilatory Nitrate Reduction by Eukaryotic Microbes.

    PubMed

    Kamp, Anja; Høgslund, Signe; Risgaard-Petersen, Nils; Stief, Peter

    2015-01-01

    The microbial nitrogen cycle is one of the most complex and environmentally important element cycles on Earth and has long been thought to be mediated exclusively by prokaryotic microbes. Rather recently, it was discovered that certain eukaryotic microbes are able to store nitrate intracellularly and use it for dissimilatory nitrate reduction in the absence of oxygen. The paradigm shift that this entailed is ecologically significant because the eukaryotes in question comprise global players like diatoms, foraminifers, and fungi. This review article provides an unprecedented overview of nitrate storage and dissimilatory nitrate reduction by diverse marine eukaryotes placed into an eco-physiological context. The advantage of intracellular nitrate storage for anaerobic energy conservation in oxygen-depleted habitats is explained and the life style enabled by this metabolic trait is described. A first compilation of intracellular nitrate inventories in various marine sediments is presented, indicating that intracellular nitrate pools vastly exceed porewater nitrate pools. The relative contribution by foraminifers to total sedimentary denitrification is estimated for different marine settings, suggesting that eukaryotes may rival prokaryotes in terms of dissimilatory nitrate reduction. Finally, this review article sketches some evolutionary perspectives of eukaryotic nitrate metabolism and identifies open questions that need to be addressed in future investigations.

  13. Nitrate Storage and Dissimilatory Nitrate Reduction by Eukaryotic Microbes

    PubMed Central

    Kamp, Anja; Høgslund, Signe; Risgaard-Petersen, Nils; Stief, Peter

    2015-01-01

    The microbial nitrogen cycle is one of the most complex and environmentally important element cycles on Earth and has long been thought to be mediated exclusively by prokaryotic microbes. Rather recently, it was discovered that certain eukaryotic microbes are able to store nitrate intracellularly and use it for dissimilatory nitrate reduction in the absence of oxygen. The paradigm shift that this entailed is ecologically significant because the eukaryotes in question comprise global players like diatoms, foraminifers, and fungi. This review article provides an unprecedented overview of nitrate storage and dissimilatory nitrate reduction by diverse marine eukaryotes placed into an eco-physiological context. The advantage of intracellular nitrate storage for anaerobic energy conservation in oxygen-depleted habitats is explained and the life style enabled by this metabolic trait is described. A first compilation of intracellular nitrate inventories in various marine sediments is presented, indicating that intracellular nitrate pools vastly exceed porewater nitrate pools. The relative contribution by foraminifers to total sedimentary denitrification is estimated for different marine settings, suggesting that eukaryotes may rival prokaryotes in terms of dissimilatory nitrate reduction. Finally, this review article sketches some evolutionary perspectives of eukaryotic nitrate metabolism and identifies open questions that need to be addressed in future investigations. PMID:26734001

  14. An ancestral bacterial division system is widespread in eukaryotic mitochondria.

    PubMed

    Leger, Michelle M; Petrů, Markéta; Žárský, Vojtěch; Eme, Laura; Vlček, Čestmír; Harding, Tommy; Lang, B Franz; Eliáš, Marek; Doležal, Pavel; Roger, Andrew J

    2015-08-18

    Bacterial division initiates at the site of a contractile Z-ring composed of polymerized FtsZ. The location of the Z-ring in the cell is controlled by a system of three mutually antagonistic proteins, MinC, MinD, and MinE. Plastid division is also known to be dependent on homologs of these proteins, derived from the ancestral cyanobacterial endosymbiont that gave rise to plastids. In contrast, the mitochondria of model systems such as Saccharomyces cerevisiae, mammals, and Arabidopsis thaliana seem to have replaced the ancestral α-proteobacterial Min-based division machinery with host-derived dynamin-related proteins that form outer contractile rings. Here, we show that the mitochondrial division system of these model organisms is the exception, rather than the rule, for eukaryotes. We describe endosymbiont-derived, bacterial-like division systems comprising FtsZ and Min proteins in diverse less-studied eukaryote protistan lineages, including jakobid and heterolobosean excavates, a malawimonad, stramenopiles, amoebozoans, a breviate, and an apusomonad. For two of these taxa, the amoebozoan Dictyostelium purpureum and the jakobid Andalucia incarcerata, we confirm a mitochondrial localization of these proteins by their heterologous expression in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The discovery of a proteobacterial-like division system in mitochondria of diverse eukaryotic lineages suggests that it was the ancestral feature of all eukaryotic mitochondria and has been supplanted by a host-derived system multiple times in distinct eukaryote lineages.

  15. Censusing marine eukaryotic diversity in the twenty-first century

    PubMed Central

    Knowlton, Nancy

    2016-01-01

    The ocean constitutes one of the vastest and richest biomes on our planet. Most recent estimations, all based on indirect approaches, suggest that there are millions of marine eukaryotic species. Moreover, a large majority of these are small (less than 1 mm), cryptic and still unknown to science. However, this knowledge gap, caused by the lack of diagnostic morphological features in small organisms and the limited sampling of the global ocean, is currently being filled, thanks to new DNA-based approaches. The molecular technique of PCR amplification of homologous gene regions combined with high-throughput sequencing, routinely used to census unculturable prokaryotes, is now also being used to characterize whole communities of marine eukaryotes. Here, we review how this methodological advancement has helped to better quantify the magnitude and patterns of marine eukaryotic diversity, with an emphasis on taxonomic groups previously largely overlooked. We then discuss obstacles remaining to achieve a global understanding of marine eukaryotic diversity. In particular, we argue that 18S variable regions do not provide sufficient taxonomic resolution to census marine life, and suggest combining broad eukaryotic surveys targeting the 18S rRNA region with more taxon-focused analyses of hypervariable regions to improve our understanding of the diversity of species, the functional units of marine ecosystems. This article is part of the themed issue ‘From DNA barcodes to biomes’. PMID:27481783

  16. Kinome profiling using peptide arrays in eukaryotic cells.

    PubMed

    Parikh, Kaushal; Peppelenbosch, Maikel P; Ritsema, Tita

    2009-01-01

    Over the last 10 years array and mass spectrometry technologies have enabled the determination of the transcriptome and proteome of biological and in particular eukaryotic systems. This information will likely be of significant value to our elucidation of the molecular mechanisms that govern eukaryotic physiology. However, an equally, if not more important goal, is to define those proteins that participate in signalling pathways that ultimately control cell fate. Enzymes that phosphorylate tyrosine, serine, and threonine residues on other proteins play a major role in signalling cascades that determine cell-cycle entry, and survival and differentiation fate in the tissues across the eukaryotic kingdoms. Knowing which signalling pathways are being used in these cells is of critical importance. Traditional genetic and biochemical approaches can certainly provide answers here, but for technical and practical reasons there is typically pursued one gene or pathway at a time. Thus, a more comprehensive approach is needed in order to reveal signalling pathways active in nucleated cells. Towards this end, kinome analysis techniques using peptide arrays have begun to be applied with substantial success in a variety of organisms from all major branches of eukaryotic life, generating descriptions of cellular signalling without a priori assumptions as to possibly effected pathways. The general procedure and analysis methods are very similar disregarding whether the primary source of the material is animal, plant, or fungal of nature and will be described in this chapter. These studies will help us better understand what signalling pathways are critical to controlling eukaryotic cell function.

  17. A single eubacterial origin of eukaryotic pyruvate: ferredoxin oxidoreductase genes: implications for the evolution of anaerobic eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Horner, D S; Hirt, R P; Embley, T M

    1999-09-01

    The iron sulfur protein pyruvate: ferredoxin oxidoreductase (PFO) is central to energy metabolism in amitochondriate eukaryotes, including those with hydrogenosomes. Thus, revealing the evolutionary history of PFO is critical to understanding the origin(s) of eukaryote anaerobic energy metabolism. We determined a complete PFO sequence for Spironucleus barkhanus, a large fragment of a PFO sequence from Clostridium pasteurianum, and a fragment of a new PFO from Giardia lamblia. Phylogenetic analyses of eubacterial and eukaryotic PFO genes suggest a complex history for PFO, including possible gene duplications and horizontal transfers among eubacteria. Our analyses favor a common origin for eukaryotic cytosolic and hydrogenosomal PFOs from a single eubacterial source, rather than from separate horizontal transfers as previously suggested. However, with the present sampling of genes and species, we were unable to infer a specific eubacterial sister group for eukaryotic PFO. Thus, we find no direct support for the published hypothesis that the donor of eukaryote PFO was the common alpha-proteobacterial ancestor of mitochondria and hydrogenosomes. We also report that several fungi and protists encode proteins with PFO domains that are likely monophyletic with PFOs from anaerobic protists. In Saccharomyces cerevisiae, PFO domains combine with fragments of other redox proteins to form fusion proteins which participate in methionine biosynthesis. Our results are consistent with the view that PFO, an enzyme previously considered to be specific to energy metabolism in amitochondriate protists, was present in the common ancestor of contemporary eukaryotes and was retained, wholly or in part, during the evolution of oxygen-dependent and mitochondrion-bearing lineages.

  18. Distribution of eukaryotic serine racemases in the bacterial domain and characterization of a representative protein in Roseobacter litoralis Och 149.

    PubMed

    Kubota, Takaaki; Shimamura, Shigeru; Kobayashi, Tohru; Nunoura, Takuro; Deguchi, Shigeru

    2016-01-01

    Two distinct bacterial and eukaryotic serine racemases (SRs) have been identified based on phylogenetic and biochemical characteristics. Although some reports have suggested that marine heterotrophic bacteria have the potential to produce d-serine, the gene encoding bacterial SRs is not found in those bacterial genomes. In this study, using in-depth genomic analysis, we found that eukaryotic SR homologues were distributed widely in various bacterial genomes. Additionally, we selected a eukaryotic SR homologue from a marine heterotrophic bacterium, Roseobacter litoralis Och 149 (RiSR), and constructed an RiSR gene expression system in Escherichia coli for studying the properties of the enzyme. Among the tested amino acids, the recombinant RiSR exhibited both racemization and dehydration activities only towards serine, similar to many eukaryotic SRs. Mg2+ and MgATP enhanced both activities of RiSR, whereas EDTA abolished these enzymatic activities. The enzymatic properties and domain structure of RiSR were similar to those of eukaryotic SRs, particularly mammalian SRs. However, RiSR showed lower catalytic efficiency for L-serine dehydration (kcat/Km=0.094 min(-1) mM(-1)) than those of eukaryotic SRs reported to date (kcat/Km=0.6-21 min(-1) mM(-1)). In contrast, the catalytic efficiency for L-serine racemization of RiSR (kcat/Km=3.14 min(-1) mM(-1)) was 34-fold higher than that of l-serine dehydration. These data suggested that RiSR primarily catalysed serine racemization rather than dehydration.

  19. Unicellular eukaryotes as models in cell and molecular biology: critical appraisal of their past and future value.

    PubMed

    Simon, Martin; Plattner, Helmut

    2014-01-01

    Unicellular eukaryotes have been appreciated as model systems for the analysis of crucial questions in cell and molecular biology. This includes Dictyostelium (chemotaxis, amoeboid movement, phagocytosis), Tetrahymena (telomere structure, telomerase function), Paramecium (variant surface antigens, exocytosis, phagocytosis cycle) or both ciliates (ciliary beat regulation, surface pattern formation), Chlamydomonas (flagellar biogenesis and beat), and yeast (S. cerevisiae) for innumerable aspects. Nowadays many problems may be tackled with "higher" eukaryotic/metazoan cells for which full genomic information as well as domain databases, etc., were available long before protozoa. Established molecular tools, commercial antibodies, and established pharmacology are additional advantages available for higher eukaryotic cells. Moreover, an increasing number of inherited genetic disturbances in humans have become elucidated and can serve as new models. Among lower eukaryotes, yeast will remain a standard model because of its peculiarities, including its reduced genome and availability in the haploid form. But do protists still have a future as models? This touches not only the basic understanding of biology but also practical aspects of research, such as fund raising. As we try to scrutinize, due to specific advantages some protozoa should and will remain favorable models for analyzing novel genes or specific aspects of cell structure and function. Outstanding examples are epigenetic phenomena-a field of rising interest. PMID:24529723

  20. Unicellular eukaryotes as models in cell and molecular biology: critical appraisal of their past and future value.

    PubMed

    Simon, Martin; Plattner, Helmut

    2014-01-01

    Unicellular eukaryotes have been appreciated as model systems for the analysis of crucial questions in cell and molecular biology. This includes Dictyostelium (chemotaxis, amoeboid movement, phagocytosis), Tetrahymena (telomere structure, telomerase function), Paramecium (variant surface antigens, exocytosis, phagocytosis cycle) or both ciliates (ciliary beat regulation, surface pattern formation), Chlamydomonas (flagellar biogenesis and beat), and yeast (S. cerevisiae) for innumerable aspects. Nowadays many problems may be tackled with "higher" eukaryotic/metazoan cells for which full genomic information as well as domain databases, etc., were available long before protozoa. Established molecular tools, commercial antibodies, and established pharmacology are additional advantages available for higher eukaryotic cells. Moreover, an increasing number of inherited genetic disturbances in humans have become elucidated and can serve as new models. Among lower eukaryotes, yeast will remain a standard model because of its peculiarities, including its reduced genome and availability in the haploid form. But do protists still have a future as models? This touches not only the basic understanding of biology but also practical aspects of research, such as fund raising. As we try to scrutinize, due to specific advantages some protozoa should and will remain favorable models for analyzing novel genes or specific aspects of cell structure and function. Outstanding examples are epigenetic phenomena-a field of rising interest.

  1. Dynamic chromatin: the regulatory domain organization of eukaryotic gene loci.

    PubMed

    Bonifer, C; Hecht, A; Saueressig, H; Winter, D M; Sippel, A E

    1991-10-01

    It is hypothesized that nuclear DNA is organized in topologically constrained loop domains defining basic units of higher order chromatin structure. Our studies are performed in order to investigate the functional relevance of this structural subdivision of eukaryotic chromatin for the control of gene expression. We used the chicken lysozyme gene locus as a model to examine the relation between chromatin structure and gene function. Several structural features of the lysozyme locus are known: the extension of the region of general DNAasel sensitivity of the active gene, the location of DNA-sequences with high affinity for the nuclear matrix in vitro, and the position of DNAasel hypersensitive chromatin sites (DHSs). The pattern of DHSs changes depending on the transcriptional status of the gene. Functional studies demonstrated that DHSs mark the position of cis-acting regulatory elements. Additionally, we discovered a novel cis-activity of the border regions of the DNAasel sensitive domain (A-elements). By eliminating the position effect on gene expression usually observed when genes are randomly integrated into the genome after transfection, A-elements possibly serve as punctuation marks for a regulatory chromatin domain. Experiments using transgenic mice confirmed that the complete structurally defined lysozyme gene domain behaves as an independent regulatory unit, expressing the gene in a tissue specific and position independent manner. These expression features were lost in transgenic mice carrying a construct, in which the A-elements as well as an upstream enhancer region were deleted, indicating the lack of a locus activation function on this construct. Experiments are designed in order to uncover possible hierarchical relationships between the different cis-acting regulatory elements for stepwise gene activation during cell differentiation. We are aiming at the definition of the basic structural and functional requirements for position independent and high

  2. Dynamic chromatin: the regulatory domain organization of eukaryotic gene loci.

    PubMed

    Bonifer, C; Hecht, A; Saueressig, H; Winter, D M; Sippel, A E

    1991-10-01

    It is hypothesized that nuclear DNA is organized in topologically constrained loop domains defining basic units of higher order chromatin structure. Our studies are performed in order to investigate the functional relevance of this structural subdivision of eukaryotic chromatin for the control of gene expression. We used the chicken lysozyme gene locus as a model to examine the relation between chromatin structure and gene function. Several structural features of the lysozyme locus are known: the extension of the region of general DNAasel sensitivity of the active gene, the location of DNA-sequences with high affinity for the nuclear matrix in vitro, and the position of DNAasel hypersensitive chromatin sites (DHSs). The pattern of DHSs changes depending on the transcriptional status of the gene. Functional studies demonstrated that DHSs mark the position of cis-acting regulatory elements. Additionally, we discovered a novel cis-activity of the border regions of the DNAasel sensitive domain (A-elements). By eliminating the position effect on gene expression usually observed when genes are randomly integrated into the genome after transfection, A-elements possibly serve as punctuation marks for a regulatory chromatin domain. Experiments using transgenic mice confirmed that the complete structurally defined lysozyme gene domain behaves as an independent regulatory unit, expressing the gene in a tissue specific and position independent manner. These expression features were lost in transgenic mice carrying a construct, in which the A-elements as well as an upstream enhancer region were deleted, indicating the lack of a locus activation function on this construct. Experiments are designed in order to uncover possible hierarchical relationships between the different cis-acting regulatory elements for stepwise gene activation during cell differentiation. We are aiming at the definition of the basic structural and functional requirements for position independent and high

  3. The organization, structure, and inheritance of the ER in higher and lower eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Estrada de Martin, Paula; Novick, Peter; Ferro-Novick, Susan

    2005-12-01

    The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is a fundamental organelle required for protein assembly, lipid biosynthesis, and vesicular traffic, as well as calcium storage and the controlled release of calcium from the ER lumen into the cytosol. Membranes functionally linked to the ER by vesicle-mediated transport, such as the Golgi complex, endosomes, vacuoles-lysosomes, secretory vesicles, and the plasma membrane, originate largely from proteins and lipids synthesized in the ER. In this review we will discuss the structural organization of the ER and its inheritance.

  4. Effects of incomplete reference transcriptomes on RNA-Seq mapping for higher eukaryotes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Whole transcriptome sequencing using next generation sequencing (NGS) technologies or RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq) has been growing in popularity for studying nonmodel organisms in the fields of agriculture, evolution, and medicine. With NGS technology evolving to the point where the cost is within the ...

  5. Sequence evidence for common ancestry of eukaryotic endomembrane coatomers.

    PubMed

    Promponas, Vasilis J; Katsani, Katerina R; Blencowe, Benjamin J; Ouzounis, Christos A

    2016-03-02

    Eukaryotic cells are defined by compartments through which the trafficking of macromolecules is mediated by large complexes, such as the nuclear pore, transport vesicles and intraflagellar transport. The assembly and maintenance of these complexes is facilitated by endomembrane coatomers, long suspected to be divergently related on the basis of structural and more recently phylogenomic analysis. By performing supervised walks in sequence space across coatomer superfamilies, we uncover subtle sequence patterns that have remained elusive to date, ultimately unifying eukaryotic coatomers by divergent evolution. The conserved residues shared by 3,502 endomembrane coatomer components are mapped onto the solenoid superhelix of nucleoporin and COPII protein structures, thus determining the invariant elements of coatomer architecture. This ancient structural motif can be considered as a universal signature connecting eukaryotic coatomers involved in multiple cellular processes across cell physiology and human disease.

  6. Sequence evidence for common ancestry of eukaryotic endomembrane coatomers.

    PubMed

    Promponas, Vasilis J; Katsani, Katerina R; Blencowe, Benjamin J; Ouzounis, Christos A

    2016-01-01

    Eukaryotic cells are defined by compartments through which the trafficking of macromolecules is mediated by large complexes, such as the nuclear pore, transport vesicles and intraflagellar transport. The assembly and maintenance of these complexes is facilitated by endomembrane coatomers, long suspected to be divergently related on the basis of structural and more recently phylogenomic analysis. By performing supervised walks in sequence space across coatomer superfamilies, we uncover subtle sequence patterns that have remained elusive to date, ultimately unifying eukaryotic coatomers by divergent evolution. The conserved residues shared by 3,502 endomembrane coatomer components are mapped onto the solenoid superhelix of nucleoporin and COPII protein structures, thus determining the invariant elements of coatomer architecture. This ancient structural motif can be considered as a universal signature connecting eukaryotic coatomers involved in multiple cellular processes across cell physiology and human disease. PMID:26931514

  7. Unraveling Adaptation in Eukaryotic Pathways: Lessons from Protocells

    PubMed Central

    De Palo, Giovanna; Endres, Robert G.

    2013-01-01

    Eukaryotic adaptation pathways operate within wide-ranging environmental conditions without stimulus saturation. Despite numerous differences in the adaptation mechanisms employed by bacteria and eukaryotes, all require energy consumption. Here, we present two minimal models showing that expenditure of energy by the cell is not essential for adaptation. Both models share important features with large eukaryotic cells: they employ small diffusible molecules and involve receptor subunits resembling highly conserved G-protein cascades. Analyzing the drawbacks of these models helps us understand the benefits of energy consumption, in terms of adjustability of response and adaptation times as well as separation of cell-external sensing and cell-internal signaling. Our work thus sheds new light on the evolution of adaptation mechanisms in complex systems. PMID:24204235

  8. Diversity and reductive evolution of mitochondria among microbial eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Hjort, Karin; Goldberg, Alina V.; Tsaousis, Anastasios D.; Hirt, Robert P.; Embley, T. Martin

    2010-01-01

    All extant eukaryotes are now considered to possess mitochondria in one form or another. Many parasites or anaerobic protists have highly reduced versions of mitochondria, which have generally lost their genome and the capacity to generate ATP through oxidative phosphorylation. These organelles have been called hydrogenosomes, when they make hydrogen, or remnant mitochondria or mitosomes when their functions were cryptic. More recently, organelles with features blurring the distinction between mitochondria, hydrogenosomes and mitosomes have been identified. These organelles have retained a mitochondrial genome and include the mitochondrial-like organelle of Blastocystis and the hydrogenosome of the anaerobic ciliate Nyctotherus. Studying eukaryotic diversity from the perspective of their mitochondrial variants has yielded important insights into eukaryote molecular cell biology and evolution. These investigations are contributing to understanding the essential functions of mitochondria, defined in the broadest sense, and the limits to which reductive evolution can proceed while maintaining a viable organelle. PMID:20124340

  9. Sequence evidence for common ancestry of eukaryotic endomembrane coatomers

    PubMed Central

    Promponas, Vasilis J.; Katsani, Katerina R.; Blencowe, Benjamin J.; Ouzounis, Christos A.

    2016-01-01

    Eukaryotic cells are defined by compartments through which the trafficking of macromolecules is mediated by large complexes, such as the nuclear pore, transport vesicles and intraflagellar transport. The assembly and maintenance of these complexes is facilitated by endomembrane coatomers, long suspected to be divergently related on the basis of structural and more recently phylogenomic analysis. By performing supervised walks in sequence space across coatomer superfamilies, we uncover subtle sequence patterns that have remained elusive to date, ultimately unifying eukaryotic coatomers by divergent evolution. The conserved residues shared by 3,502 endomembrane coatomer components are mapped onto the solenoid superhelix of nucleoporin and COPII protein structures, thus determining the invariant elements of coatomer architecture. This ancient structural motif can be considered as a universal signature connecting eukaryotic coatomers involved in multiple cellular processes across cell physiology and human disease. PMID:26931514

  10. Diversity and reductive evolution of mitochondria among microbial eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Hjort, Karin; Goldberg, Alina V; Tsaousis, Anastasios D; Hirt, Robert P; Embley, T Martin

    2010-03-12

    All extant eukaryotes are now considered to possess mitochondria in one form or another. Many parasites or anaerobic protists have highly reduced versions of mitochondria, which have generally lost their genome and the capacity to generate ATP through oxidative phosphorylation. These organelles have been called hydrogenosomes, when they make hydrogen, or remnant mitochondria or mitosomes when their functions were cryptic. More recently, organelles with features blurring the distinction between mitochondria, hydrogenosomes and mitosomes have been identified. These organelles have retained a mitochondrial genome and include the mitochondrial-like organelle of Blastocystis and the hydrogenosome of the anaerobic ciliate Nyctotherus. Studying eukaryotic diversity from the perspective of their mitochondrial variants has yielded important insights into eukaryote molecular cell biology and evolution. These investigations are contributing to understanding the essential functions of mitochondria, defined in the broadest sense, and the limits to which reductive evolution can proceed while maintaining a viable organelle.

  11. Aggregative multicellularity evolved independently in the eukaryotic supergroup Rhizaria.

    PubMed

    Brown, Matthew W; Kolisko, Martin; Silberman, Jeffrey D; Roger, Andrew J

    2012-06-19

    Multicellular forms of life have evolved many times, independently giving rise to a diversity of organisms such as animals, plants, and fungi that together comprise the visible biosphere. Yet multicellular life is far more widespread among eukaryotes than just these three lineages. A particularly common form of multicellularity is a social aggregative fruiting lifestyle whereby individual cells associate to form a "fungus-like" sorocarp. This complex developmental process that requires the interaction of thousands of cells working in concert was made famous by the "cellular slime mold"Dictyostelium discoideum, which became an important model organism. Although sorocarpic protistan lineages have been identified in five of the major eukaryote groups, the ubiquitous and globally distributed species Guttulinopsis vulgaris has eluded proper classification. Here we demonstrate, by phylogenomic analyses of a 159-protein data set, that G. vulgaris is a member of Rhizaria and is thus the first member of this eukaryote supergroup known to be capable of aggregative multicellularity. PMID:22608512

  12. New symbiotic hypothesis on the origin of eukaryotic flagella

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Jing Yan; Wu, Chuan Fen

    2005-07-01

    The origin of eukaryotic flagella has long been a mystery. Here we review the possibility that flagella sprouted evolutionarily from the eukaryotic cell proper seems very unlikely because it is hard to imagine what function and benefit in natural selection the flagella would have provided to the cells when they first emerged as simple buds. Lynn Margulis’ 1970 spirochete hypothesis, though popular still, has never been confirmed. Moreover, the absence of tubulin and axonemal dynein in the spirochetes and the incapability of the bacterial and eukaryotic membranes’ making a continuum now suggest that the hypothesis is outdated. Tubulin genes were recently identified in a new bacteria division, verrucomicrobia, and microtubules have also been found in one of these species, epixenosomes, the defensive ectosymbionts. On the basis of these data, we propose a new symbiotic hypothesis: that the mid-ancestor of eukaryotic cells obtained epixenosomelike verrucomicrobia as defensive ectosymbionts and the ectosymbionts later became endosymbiotic. They still, however, protruded from the surface of their host to play their role. Later, many genes were lost or incorporated into the host genome. Finally, the genome, the bacterial membrane, and the endosymbiotic vesicle membrane were totally lost, and fingerlike protrusions with microtubules formed. As the cells grew larger, the defensive function of the protrusions eventually weakened and then vanished. Some of the protrusions took on a new role in cell movement, which led them to evolve into flagella. The key step in this process was that the dynein obtained from the host evolved into axonemal dyneins, attaching onto the microtubules and forming motile axonemes. Our hypothesis is unproven, but it offers a possible explanation that is consistent with current scientific thought. We hope that our ideas will stimulate additional studies on the origin of eukaryotic flagella and on investigations of verrucomicrobia. Whether such

  13. New symbiotic hypothesis on the origin of eukaryotic flagella.

    PubMed

    Li, Jing Yan; Wu, Chuan Fen

    2005-07-01

    The origin of eukaryotic flagella has long been a mystery. Here we review the possibility that flagella sprouted evolutionarily from the eukaryotic cell proper seems very unlikely because it is hard to imagine what function and benefit in natural selection the flagella would have provided to the cells when they first emerged as simple buds. Lynn Margulis' 1970 spirochete hypothesis, though popular still, has never been confirmed. Moreover, the absence of tubulin and axonemal dynein in the spirochetes and the incapability of the bacterial and eukaryotic membranes' making a continuum now suggest that the hypothesis is outdated. Tubulin genes were recently identified in a new bacteria division, verrucomicrobia, and microtubules have also been found in one of these species, epixenosomes, the defensive ectosymbionts. On the basis of these data, we propose a new symbiotic hypothesis: that the mid-ancestor of eukaryotic cells obtained epixenosomelike verrucomicrobia as defensive ectosymbionts and the ectosymbionts later became endosymbiotic. They still, however, protruded from the surface of their host to play their role. Later, many genes were lost or incorporated into the host genome. Finally, the genome, the bacterial membrane, and the endosymbiotic vesicle membrane were totally lost, and fingerlike protrusions with microtubules formed. As the cells grew larger, the defensive function of the protrusions eventually weakened and then vanished. Some of the protrusions took on a new role in cell movement, which led them to evolve into flagella. The key step in this process was that the dynein obtained from the host evolved into axonemal dyneins, attaching onto the microtubules and forming motile axonemes. Our hypothesis is unproven, but it offers a possible explanation that is consistent with current scientific thought. We hope that our ideas will stimulate additional studies on the origin of eukaryotic flagella and on investigations of verrucomicrobia. Whether such

  14. PECAS: prokaryotic and eukaryotic classical analysis of secretome.

    PubMed

    Cortazar, Ana R; Oguiza, José A; Aransay, Ana M; Lavín, José L

    2015-12-01

    Full sets of proteins that are transported to the extracellular space, called secretomes, have been studied for a variety of organisms to understand their potential role in crucial metabolic pathways and complex health conditions. However, there is a lack of tools for integrative classical analysis of secretomes that consider all the data sources available nowadays. Thus, PECAS (Prokaryotic and Eukaryotic Classical Analysis of Secretome) has been developed to provide a well-established prediction pipeline on secreted proteins for prokaryote and eukaryote species. PMID:26233761

  15. Eukaryotic ribosomes that lack a 5.8S RNA

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vossbrinck, C. R.; Woese, C. R.

    1986-01-01

    The 5.8S ribosomal RNA is believed to be a universal eukaryotic characteristic. It has no (size) counterpart among the prokaryotes, although its sequence is homologous with the first 150 or so nucleotides of the prokaryotic large subunit (23S) ribosomal RNA. An exception to this rule is reported here. The microsporidian Vairimorpha necatrix is a eukaryote that has no 5.8S rRNA. As in the prokaryotes, it has a single large subunit rRNA, whose 5-prime region corresponds to the 5.8S rRNA.

  16. The early evolution of eukaryotes - A geological perspective

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Knoll, Andrew H.

    1992-01-01

    This paper examines the goodness of fit between patterns of biological and environmental history implied by molecular phylogenies of eukaryotic organisms and the geological records of early eukaryote evolution. It was found that Precambrian geological records show evidence that episodic increases in biological diversity roughly coincided with episodic environmental changes and by sharp increases in atmospheric oxygen concentrations which significantly changed the earth surface environments. Although the goodness of fit among physical and biological changes is gratifyingly high, the records of these changes do not always coincide in time. The additional information in these fields that is needed for complete integration of geological and phylogenic records is suggested.

  17. Genetics of eukaryotic RNA polymerases I, II, and III.

    PubMed Central

    Archambault, J; Friesen, J D

    1993-01-01

    The transcription of nucleus-encoded genes in eukaryotes is performed by three distinct RNA polymerases termed I, II, and III, each of which is a complex enzyme composed of more than 10 subunits. The isolation of genes encoding subunits of eukaryotic RNA polymerases from a wide spectrum of organisms has confirmed previous biochemical and immunological data indicating that all three enzymes are closely related in structures that have been conserved in evolution. Each RNA polymerase is an enzyme complex composed of two large subunits that are homologous to the two largest subunits of prokaryotic RNA polymerases and are associated with smaller polypeptides, some of which are common to two or to all three eukaryotic enzymes. This remarkable conservation of structure most probably underlies a conservation of function and emphasizes the likelihood that information gained from the study of RNA polymerases from one organism will be applicable to others. The recent isolation of many mutations affecting the structure and/or function of eukaryotic and prokaryotic RNA polymerases now makes it feasible to begin integrating genetic and biochemical information from various species in order to develop a picture of these enzymes. The picture of eukaryotic RNA polymerases depicted in this article emphasizes the role(s) of different polypeptide regions in interaction with other subunits, cofactors, substrates, inhibitors, or accessory transcription factors, as well as the requirement for these interactions in transcription initiation, elongation, pausing, termination, and/or enzyme assembly. Most mutations described here have been isolated in eukaryotic organisms that have well-developed experimental genetic systems as well as amenable biochemistry, such as Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Drosophila melanogaster, and Caenorhabditis elegans. When relevant, mutations affecting regions of Escherichia coli RNA polymerase that are conserved among eukaryotes and prokaryotes are also presented

  18. DNA N6-Methyladenine: a new epigenetic mark in eukaryotes?

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Guan-Zheng; Blanco, Mario Andres; Greer, Eric Lieberman; He, Chuan; Shi, Yang

    2016-01-01

    DNA N6-adenine methylation (6mA) in prokaryotes functions primarily in the host defense system. The prevalence and significance of this modification in eukaryotes has been unclear until recently. Here we discuss recent publications documenting the presence of 6mA in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, Drosophila melanogaster and Caenorhabditis elegans, consider possible roles for this DNA modification in regulating transcription, transposable elements and trans-generational epigenetic inheritance, and propose 6mA as a new epigenetic mark in eukaryotes. PMID:26507168

  19. Helitrons on a roll: eukaryotic rolling-circle transposons.

    PubMed

    Kapitonov, Vladimir V; Jurka, Jerzy

    2007-10-01

    Rolling-circle eukaryotic transposons, known as Helitron transposons, were first discovered in plants (Arabidopsis thaliana and Oryza sativa) and in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. To date, Helitrons have been identified in a diverse range of species, from protists to mammals. They represent a major class of eukaryotic transposons and are fundamentally different from classical transposons in terms of their structure and mechanism of transposition. Helitrons seem to have a major role in the evolution of host genomes. They frequently capture diverse host genes, some of which can evolve into novel host genes or become essential for helitron transposition.

  20. Silence of the strands: RNA interference in eukaryotic pathogens.

    PubMed

    Cottrell, Tricia R; Doering, Tamara L

    2003-01-01

    Double-stranded (ds) RNA interference (RNAi) is a recent technological advance that enables researchers to reduce gene expression at the post-transcriptional level. This form of RNA silencing is initiated by dsRNA, expressed in or introduced into a cell of interest, which triggers homology-dependent degradation of the corresponding mRNA. This versatile technique has remarkable promise as a tool for the study of eukaryotic pathogens. Protozoan parasites and pathogenic fungi often resist manipulation using standard molecular genetic approaches. Researchers studying these organisms need flexible molecular tools, particularly to exploit newly sequenced genomes; this review offers a practical guide to establishing RNAi in pathogenic eukaryotes.

  1. Hierarchies in eukaryotic genome organization: Insights from polymer theory and simulations

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Eukaryotic genomes possess an elaborate and dynamic higher-order structure within the limiting confines of the cell nucleus. Knowledge of the physical principles and the molecular machinery that govern the 3D organization of this structure and its regulation are key to understanding the relationship between genome structure and function. Elegant microscopy and chromosome conformation capture techniques supported by analysis based on polymer models are important steps in this direction. Here, we review results from these efforts and provide some additional insights that elucidate the relationship between structure and function at different hierarchical levels of genome organization. PMID:21595865

  2. Characterization of SNAREs Determines the Absence of a Typical Golgi Apparatus in the Ancient Eukaryote Giardia lamblia*S⃞

    PubMed Central

    Elias, Eliana V.; Quiroga, Rodrigo; Gottig, Natalia; Nakanishi, Hideki; Nash, Theodore E.; Neiman, Aaron; Lujan, Hugo D.

    2008-01-01

    Giardia is a eukaryotic protozoal parasite with unusual characteristics, such as the absence of a morphologically evident Golgi apparatus. Although both constitutive and regulated pathways for protein secretion are evident in Giardia, little is known about the mechanisms involved in vesicular docking and fusion. In higher eukaryotes, soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptors (SNAREs) of the vesicle-associated membrane protein and syntaxin families play essential roles in these processes. In this work we identified and characterized genes for 17 SNAREs in Giardia to define the minimal set of subcellular organelles present during growth and encystation, in particular the presence or not of a Golgi apparatus. Expression and localization of all Giardia SNAREs demonstrate their presence in distinct subcellular compartments, which may represent the extent of the endomembrane system in eukaryotes. Remarkably, Giardia SNAREs, homologous to Golgi SNAREs from other organisms, do not allow the detection of a typical Golgi apparatus in either proliferating or differentiating trophozoites. However, some features of the Golgi, such as the packaging and sorting function, seem to be performed by the endoplasmic reticulum and/or the nuclear envelope. Moreover, depletion of individual genes demonstrated that several SNAREs are essential for viability, whereas others are dispensable. Thus, Giardia requires a smaller number of SNAREs compared with other eukaryotes to accomplish all of the vesicle trafficking events that are critical for the growth and differentiation of this important human pathogen. PMID:18930915

  3. Diverse eukaryotes have retained mitochondrial homologues of the bacterial division protein FtsZ.

    PubMed

    Kiefel, Ben R; Gilson, Paul R; Beech, Peter L

    2004-03-01

    Mitochondrial fission requires the division of both the inner and outer mitochondrial membranes. Dynamin-related proteins operate in division of the outer membrane of probably all mitochondria, and also that of chloroplasts--organelles that have a bacterial origin like mitochondria. How the inner mitochondrial membrane divides is less well established. Homologues of the major bacterial division protein, FtsZ, are known to reside inside mitochondria of the chromophyte alga Mallomonas, a red alga, and the slime mould Dictyostelium discoideum, where these proteins are likely to act in division of the organelle. Mitochondrial FtsZ is, however, absent from the genomes of higher eukaryotes (animals, fungi, and plants), even though FtsZs are known to be essential for the division of probably all chloroplasts. To begin to understand why higher eukaryotes have lost mitochondrial FtsZ, we have sampled various diverse protists to determine which groups have retained the gene. Database searches and degenerate PCR uncovered genes for likely mitochondrial FtsZs from the glaucocystophyte Cyanophora paradoxa, the oomycete Phytophthora infestans, two haptophyte algae, and two diatoms--one being Thalassiosira pseudonana, the draft genome of which is now available. From Thalassiosira we also identified two chloroplast FtsZs, one of which appears to be undergoing a C-terminal shortening that may be common to many organellar FtsZs. Our data indicate that many protists still employ the FtsZ-based ancestral mitochondrial division mechanism, and that mitochondrial FtsZ has been lost numerous times in the evolution of eukaryotes.

  4. Custom-Made Quorum Sensing for a Eukaryote.

    PubMed

    May, Robin C

    2016-06-01

    Quorum-sensing systems, common in prokaryotes, enable bacteria to coordinately regulate behavior with population density. Reporting recently in Cell Host & Microbe, Homer et al. (2016) characterize an elegant eukaryotic quorum-sensing pathway in the human pathogenic fungus Cryptococcus neoformans. PMID:27270036

  5. Tracking Eukaryotic Production and Burial Through Time with Zinc Isotopes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tang, T. Y. S.; Planavsky, N.; Owens, J. D.; Love, G. D.; Lyons, T.; Peterson, L. C.; Knoll, A. H.; Dupont, C. L.; Reinhard, C.; Zumberge, A.

    2015-12-01

    Zinc is an important, often co-limiting nutrient for eukaryotes in the oceans today. Given the importance of Zn in the modern oceans, we developed a Zn isotope approach to track the extent of Zn limitation and eukaryotic production through Earth's history. Specifically, we use the isotopic systematics of the pyrite (δ66Znpyr), rock extracts (bitumen) and kerogen pyrolysate (δ66Znorg) within euxinic black shales. We show that δ66Znpyr of euxinic core-top muds from the Cariaco basin capture the global deep seawater signature, validating its use as a seawater proxy. Additionally, we propose that Δ66Znpyr-org can be used to track surface water zinc bioavailability. Detailed studies of short-lived oceanic anoxic events such as Cretaceous OAE2, which punctuate an otherwise dominantly oxic Phanerozoic world, exhibit dramatic shifts in seawater δ66Zn and organic bound zinc. Such perturbations are consistent with the demise of eukaryotes under a nitrogen stressed regime, in which cyanobacteria carry the competitive advantage. Contradictory to previous models, however, our data suggest that zinc remained largely bioavailable throughout these anoxic intervals despite significant drawdown of the global reservoir. The framework developed from studies of the modern, Cenozoic, and Mesozoic can be used to track the Precambrian evolution of the marine Zn cycle and the rise of eukaryotic algae to ecological dominance.

  6. A guide to in silico vaccine discovery for eukaryotic pathogens.

    PubMed

    Goodswen, Stephen J; Kennedy, Paul J; Ellis, John T

    2013-11-01

    In this article, a framework for an in silico pipeline is presented as a guide to high-throughput vaccine candidate discovery for eukaryotic pathogens, such as helminths and protozoa. Eukaryotic pathogens are mostly parasitic and cause some of the most damaging and difficult to treat diseases in humans and livestock. Consequently, these parasitic pathogens have a significant impact on economy and human health. The pipeline is based on the principle of reverse vaccinology and is constructed from freely available bioinformatics programs. There are several successful applications of reverse vaccinology to the discovery of subunit vaccines against prokaryotic pathogens but not yet against eukaryotic pathogens. The overriding aim of the pipeline, which focuses on eukaryotic pathogens, is to generate through computational processes of elimination and evidence gathering a ranked list of proteins based on a scoring system. These proteins are either surface components of the target pathogen or are secreted by the pathogen and are of a type known to be antigenic. No perfect predictive method is yet available; therefore, the highest-scoring proteins from the list require laboratory validation.

  7. Structure and Mechanism of a Eukaryotic FMN Adenylyltransferase

    SciTech Connect

    Huerta, Carlos; Borek, Dominika; Machius, Mischa; Grishin, Nick V.; Zhang, Hong

    2009-12-01

    Flavin mononucleotide adenylyltransferase (FMNAT) catalyzes the formation of the essential flavocoenzyme flavin adenine dinucleotide (FAD) and plays an important role in flavocoenzyme homeostasis regulation. By sequence comparison, bacterial and eukaryotic FMNAT enzymes belong to two different protein superfamilies and apparently utilize different sets of active-site residues to accomplish the same chemistry. Here we report the first structural characterization of a eukaryotic FMNAT from the pathogenic yeast Candida glabrata. Four crystal structures of C. glabrata FMNAT in different complexed forms were determined at 1.20-1.95 A resolutions, capturing the enzyme active-site states prior to and after catalysis. These structures reveal a novel flavin-binding mode and a unique enzyme-bound FAD conformation. Comparison of the bacterial and eukaryotic FMNATs provides a structural basis for understanding the convergent evolution of the same FMNAT activity from different protein ancestors. Structure-based investigation of the kinetic properties of FMNAT should offer insights into the regulatory mechanisms of FAD homeostasis by FMNAT in eukaryotic organisms.

  8. Potent, Reversible, and Specific Chemical Inhibitors of Eukaryotic Ribosome Biogenesis.

    PubMed

    Kawashima, Shigehiro A; Chen, Zhen; Aoi, Yuki; Patgiri, Anupam; Kobayashi, Yuki; Nurse, Paul; Kapoor, Tarun M

    2016-10-01

    All cellular proteins are synthesized by ribosomes, whose biogenesis in eukaryotes is a complex multi-step process completed within minutes. Several chemical inhibitors of ribosome function are available and used as tools or drugs. By contrast, we lack potent validated chemical probes to analyze the dynamics of eukaryotic ribosome assembly. Here, we combine chemical and genetic approaches to discover ribozinoindoles (or Rbins), potent and reversible triazinoindole-based inhibitors of eukaryotic ribosome biogenesis. Analyses of Rbin sensitivity and resistance conferring mutations in fission yeast, along with biochemical assays with recombinant proteins, provide evidence that Rbins' physiological target is Midasin, an essential ∼540-kDa AAA+ (ATPases associated with diverse cellular activities) protein. Using Rbins to acutely inhibit or activate Midasin function, in parallel experiments with inhibitor-sensitive or inhibitor-resistant cells, we uncover Midasin's role in assembling Nsa1 particles, nucleolar precursors of the 60S subunit. Together, our findings demonstrate that Rbins are powerful probes for eukaryotic ribosome assembly.

  9. Handling tRNA introns, archaeal way and eukaryotic way

    PubMed Central

    Yoshihisa, Tohru

    2014-01-01

    Introns are found in various tRNA genes in all the three kingdoms of life. Especially, archaeal and eukaryotic genomes are good sources of tRNA introns that are removed by proteinaceous splicing machinery. Most intron-containing tRNA genes both in archaea and eukaryotes possess an intron at a so-called canonical position, one nucleotide 3′ to their anticodon, while recent bioinformatics have revealed unusual types of tRNA introns and their derivatives especially in archaeal genomes. Gain and loss of tRNA introns during various stages of evolution are obvious both in archaea and eukaryotes from analyses of comparative genomics. The splicing of tRNA molecules has been studied extensively from biochemical and cell biological points of view, and such analyses of eukaryotic systems provided interesting findings in the past years. Here, I summarize recent progresses in the analyses of tRNA introns and the splicing process, and try to clarify new and old questions to be solved in the next stages. PMID:25071838

  10. The repatterning of eukaryotic genomes by random genetic drift.

    PubMed

    Lynch, Michael; Bobay, Louis-Marie; Catania, Francesco; Gout, Jean-François; Rho, Mina

    2011-01-01

    Recent observations on rates of mutation, recombination, and random genetic drift highlight the dramatic ways in which fundamental evolutionary processes vary across the divide between unicellular microbes and multicellular eukaryotes. Moreover, population-genetic theory suggests that the range of variation in these parameters is sufficient to explain the evolutionary diversification of many aspects of genome size and gene structure found among phylogenetic lineages. Most notably, large eukaryotic organisms that experience elevated magnitudes of random genetic drift are susceptible to the passive accumulation of mutationally hazardous DNA that would otherwise be eliminated by efficient selection. Substantial evidence also suggests that variation in the population-genetic environment influences patterns of protein evolution, with the emergence of certain kinds of amino-acid substitutions and protein-protein complexes only being possible in populations with relatively small effective sizes. These observations imply that the ultimate origins of many of the major genomic and proteomic disparities between prokaryotes and eukaryotes and among eukaryotic lineages have been molded as much by intrinsic variation in the genetic and cellular features of species as by external ecological forces.

  11. Soil metatranscriptomics for mining eukaryotic heavy metal resistance genes.

    PubMed

    Lehembre, Frédéric; Doillon, Didier; David, Elise; Perrotto, Sandrine; Baude, Jessica; Foulon, Julie; Harfouche, Lamia; Vallon, Laurent; Poulain, Julie; Da Silva, Corinne; Wincker, Patrick; Oger-Desfeux, Christine; Richaud, Pierre; Colpaert, Jan V; Chalot, Michel; Fraissinet-Tachet, Laurence; Blaudez, Damien; Marmeisse, Roland

    2013-10-01

    Heavy metals are pollutants which affect all organisms. Since a small number of eukaryotes have been investigated with respect to metal resistance, we hypothesize that many genes that control this phenomenon remain to be identified. This was tested by screening soil eukaryotic metatranscriptomes which encompass RNA from organisms belonging to the main eukaryotic phyla. Soil-extracted polyadenylated mRNAs were converted into cDNAs and 35 of them were selected for their ability to rescue the metal (Cd or Zn) sensitive phenotype of yeast mutants. Few of the genes belonged to families known to confer metal resistance when overexpressed in yeast. Several of them were homologous to genes that had not been studied in the context of metal resistance. For instance, the BOLA ones, which conferred cross metal (Zn, Co, Cd, Mn) resistance may act by interfering with Fe homeostasis. Other genes, such as those encoding 110- to 130-amino-acid-long, cysteine-rich polypeptides, had no homologues in databases. This study confirms that functional metatranscriptomics represents a powerful approach to address basic biological processes in eukaryotes. The selected genes can be used to probe new pathways involved in metal homeostasis and to manipulate the resistance level of selected organisms.

  12. Targeting UDP-Galactopyranose Mutases from Eukaryotic Human Pathogens

    PubMed Central

    Kizjakina, Karina; Tanner, John J; Sobrado, Pablo

    2013-01-01

    UDP-Galactopyranose mutase (UGM) is a unique flavin-dependent enzyme that catalyzes the conversion of UDP-galactopyranose (UDP-Galp) to UDP-galactofuranose (UDP-Galf). The product of this reaction is the precursor to Galf, a major component of the cell wall and of cell surface glycoproteins and glycolipids in many eukaryotic and prokaryotic human pathogens. The function of UGM is important in the virulence of fungi, parasites, and bacteria. Its role in virulence and its absence in humans suggest that UGM is an ideal drug target. Significant structural and mechanistic information has been accumulated on the prokaryotic UGMs; however, in the past few years the research interest has shifted to UGMs from eukaryotic human pathogens such as fungi and protozoan parasites. It has become clear that UGMs from prokaryotic and eukaryotic organisms have different structural and mechanistic features. The amino acid sequence identity between these two classes of enzymes is low, resulting in differences in oligomeric states, substrate binding, active site flexibility, and interaction with redox partners. However, the unique role of the flavin cofactor in catalysis is conserved among this enzyme family. In this review, recent findings on eukaryotic UGMs are discussed and presented in comparison with prokaryotic UGMs. PMID:23116395

  13. Novel eukaryotes from the permanently anoxic Cariaco Basin (Caribbean Sea).

    PubMed

    Stoeck, Thorsten; Taylor, Gordon T; Epstein, Slava S

    2003-09-01

    Present knowledge of microbial diversity is decidedly incomplete (S. J. Giovannoni and M. S. Rappé, p. 47-84, in D. Kirchman, ed., Microbial Ecology of the Oceans, 2000; E. Stackebrandt and T. M. Embley, p. 57-75, in R. R. Colwell and D. J. Grimes, ed., Nonculturable Microorganisms in the Environment, 2000). Protistan phylogenies are particularly deficient and undoubtedly exclude clades of principal ecological and evolutionary importance (S. L. Baldauf, Science 300:1703-1706, 2003). The rRNA approach has been extraordinarily successful in expanding the global prokaryotic record (S. J. Giovannoni and M. S. Rappé, p. 47-84, in D. Kirchman, ed., Microbial Ecology of the Oceans, 2000; E. Stackebrandt and T. M. Embley, p. 57-75, in R. R. Colwell and D. J. Grimes, ed., Nonculturable Microorganisms in the Environment, 2000) but has rarely been used in protistan discovery. Here we report the first application of the 18S rRNA approach to a permanently anoxic environment, the Cariaco Basin off the Venezuelan coast. On the basis of rRNA sequences, we uncovered a substantial number of novel protistan lineages. These included new clades of the highest taxonomic level unrelated to any known eukaryote as well as deep branches within established protistan groups. Three novel lineages branch at the base of the eukaryotic evolutionary tree preceding, contemporary with, or immediately following the earliest eukaryotic branches. These newly discovered protists may retain traits reminiscent of an early eukaryotic ancestor(s).

  14. Benthic eukaryotic diversity in the Guaymas Basin hydrothermal vent environment.

    PubMed

    Edgcomb, Virginia P; Kysela, David T; Teske, Andreas; de Vera Gomez, Alvin; Sogin, Mitchell L

    2002-05-28

    Molecular microbial ecology studies have revealed remarkable prokaryotic diversity in extreme hydrothermal marine environments. There are no comparable reports of culture-independent surveys of eukaryotic life in warm, anoxic marine sediments. By using sequence comparisons of PCR-amplified small subunit ribosomal RNAs, we characterized eukaryotic diversity in hydrothermal vent environments of Guaymas Basin in the Gulf of California. Many sequences from these anoxic sediments and the overlaying seawater represent previously uncharacterized protists, including early branching eukaryotic lineages or extended diversity within described taxa. At least two mechanisms, with overlapping consequences, account for the eukaryotic community structure of this environment. The adaptation to anoxic environments is evidenced by specific affinity of environmental sequences to aerotolerant anaerobic species in molecular trees. This pattern is superimposed against a background of widely distributed aerophilic and aerotolerant protists, some of which may migrate into and survive in the sediment whereas others (e.g., phototrophs) are simply deposited by sedimentary processes. In contrast, bacterial populations in these sediments are primarily characteristic of anoxic, reduced, hydrocarbon-rich sedimentary habitats.

  15. Cosmopolitan metapopulations of free-living microbial eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Finlay, Bland J; Fenchel, Tom

    2004-06-01

    Metapopulations of macroscopic organisms tend to be geographically restricted, but free-living protists and other microbial eukaryotes present a different picture. Here we show that most organisms smaller than 1 mm occur worldwide wherever their required habitats are realised. This is a consequence of ubiquitous dispersal driven by huge population sizes, and the consequently low probability of local extinction. Organisms larger than 10 mm are much less abundant, and rarely cosmopolitan. The supporting data, together with the discovery that the 1-10 mm size range accommodates a transition from cosmopolitan to regionally-restricted distribution, were derived from extensive inventories of eukaryotic species in a freshwater pond (1278 species), and a shallow marine bay (785 species). All accessible records were examined to establish the extent of global coverage by these species. Some groups of microbial eukaryotes are severely undersampled (e.g. naked amoebae; marine meiofauna in the southern hemisphere) but this fails to weaken evidence that metapopulations of microbial eukaryotes are cosmopolitan.

  16. Self-splicing group I introns in eukaryotic viruses.

    PubMed

    Yamada, T; Tamura, K; Aimi, T; Songsri, P

    1994-07-11

    We report the occurrence of self-splicing group I introns in viruses that infect the eukaryotic green alga Chlorella. The introns contained all the conserved features of primary sequence and secondary structure previously described for the group IB introns. The Chlorella viral introns (approximately 400 nt) self-spliced in vitro, yielding the typical group I intron splicing intermediates and products. Contrasting to eukaryotic nuclear group I introns, all of which are located in the rRNA genes, these introns were inserted in genes encoding proteins. In one case, the exons encoded a protein showing significant homology to the eukaryotic transcription factor SII (TFIIS), which may be important for viral gene expression. In another case, the gene for the open reading frame (ORF) of a 14.2 kDa polypeptide with unknown functions contained the intron. Scattered distribution of these introns among the viral species and their structural similarity to the group I introns of algae and protists indicated horizontal intron transmission. These eukaryotic viral introns offer an opportunity to understand how group I introns reach organisms of different phylogenetic kingdoms.

  17. Evolutionary position of breviate amoebae and the primary eukaryote divergence.

    PubMed

    Minge, Marianne A; Silberman, Jeffrey D; Orr, Russell J S; Cavalier-Smith, Thomas; Shalchian-Tabrizi, Kamran; Burki, Fabien; Skjaeveland, Asmund; Jakobsen, Kjetill S

    2009-02-22

    Integration of ultrastructural and molecular sequence data has revealed six supergroups of eukaryote organisms (excavates, Rhizaria, chromalveolates, Plantae, Amoebozoa and opisthokonts), and the root of the eukaryote evolutionary tree is suggested to lie between unikonts (Amoebozoa, opisthokonts) and bikonts (the other supergroups). However, some smaller lineages remain of uncertain affinity. One of these unassigned taxa is the anaerobic, free-living, amoeboid flagellate Breviata anathema, which is of key significance as it is unclear whether it is a unikont (i.e. possibly the deepest branching amoebozoan) or a bikont. To establish its evolutionary position, we sequenced thousands of Breviata genes and calculated trees using 78 protein sequences. Our trees and specific substitutions in the 18S RNA sequence indicate that Breviata is related to other Amoebozoa, thereby significantly increasing the cellular diversity of this phylum and establishing Breviata as a deep-branching unikont. We discuss the implications of these results for the ancestral state of Amoebozoa and eukaryotes generally, demonstrating that phylogenomics of phylogenetically 'nomadic' species can elucidate key questions in eukaryote evolution. Furthermore, mitochondrial genes among the Breviata ESTs demonstrate that Breviata probably contains a modified anaerobic mitochondrion. With these findings, remnants of mitochondria have been detected in all putatively deep-branching amitochondriate organisms.

  18. Protein Subcellular Relocalization Increases the Retention of Eukaryotic Duplicate Genes

    PubMed Central

    Byun, S. Ashley; Singh, Sarabdeep

    2013-01-01

    Gene duplication is widely accepted as a key evolutionary process, leading to new genes and novel protein functions. By providing the raw genetic material necessary for functional expansion, the mechanisms that involve the retention and functional diversification of duplicate genes are one of the central topics in evolutionary and comparative genomics. One proposed source of retention and functional diversification is protein subcellular relocalization (PSR). PSR postulates that changes in the subcellular location of eukaryotic duplicate proteins can positively modify function and therefore be beneficial to the organism. As such, PSR would promote retention of those relocalized duplicates and result in significantly lower death rates compared with death rates of nonrelocalized duplicate pairs. We surveyed both relocalized and nonrelocalized duplicate proteins from the available genomes and proteomes of 59 eukaryotic species and compared their relative death rates over a Ks range between 0 and 1. Using the Cox proportional hazard model, we observed that the death rates of relocalized duplicate pairs were significantly lower than the death rates of the duplicates without relocalization in most eukaryotic species examined in this study. These observations suggest that PSR significantly increases retention of duplicate genes and that it plays an important, but currently underappreciated, role in the evolution of eukaryotic genomes. PMID:24265504

  19. Cytokinesis in Prokaryotes and Eukaryotes: Common Principles and Different Solutions

    PubMed Central

    Nanninga, Nanne

    2001-01-01

    Cytokinesis requires duplication of cellular structures followed by bipolarization of the predivisional cell. As a common principle, this applies to prokaryotes as well as eukaryotes. With respect to eukaryotes, the discussion has focused mainly on Saccharomyces cerevisiae and on Schizosaccharomyces pombe. Escherichia coli and to a lesser extent Bacillus subtilis have been used as prokaryotic examples. To establish a bipolar cell, duplication of a eukaryotic origin of DNA replication as well as its genome is not sufficient. Duplication of the microtubule-organizing center is required as a prelude to mitosis, and it is here that the dynamic cytoskeleton with all its associated proteins comes to the fore. In prokaryotes, a cytoskeleton that pervades the cytoplasm appears to be absent. DNA replication and the concomitant DNA segregation seem to occur without help from extensive cytosolic supramacromolecular assemblies but with help from the elongating cellular envelope. Prokaryotic cytokinesis proceeds through a contracting ring, which has a roughly 100-fold-smaller circumference than its eukaryotic counterpart. Although the ring contains proteins that can be considered as predecessors of actin, tubulin, and microtubule-associated proteins, its macromolecular composition is essentially different. PMID:11381104

  20. Benthic eukaryotic diversity in the Guaymas Basin hydrothermal vent environment

    PubMed Central

    Edgcomb, Virginia P.; Kysela, David T.; Teske, Andreas; de Vera Gomez, Alvin; Sogin, Mitchell L.

    2002-01-01

    Molecular microbial ecology studies have revealed remarkable prokaryotic diversity in extreme hydrothermal marine environments. There are no comparable reports of culture-independent surveys of eukaryotic life in warm, anoxic marine sediments. By using sequence comparisons of PCR-amplified small subunit ribosomal RNAs, we characterized eukaryotic diversity in hydrothermal vent environments of Guaymas Basin in the Gulf of California. Many sequences from these anoxic sediments and the overlaying seawater represent previously uncharacterized protists, including early branching eukaryotic lineages or extended diversity within described taxa. At least two mechanisms, with overlapping consequences, account for the eukaryotic community structure of this environment. The adaptation to anoxic environments is evidenced by specific affinity of environmental sequences to aerotolerant anaerobic species in molecular trees. This pattern is superimposed against a background of widely distributed aerophilic and aerotolerant protists, some of which may migrate into and survive in the sediment whereas others (e.g., phototrophs) are simply deposited by sedimentary processes. In contrast, bacterial populations in these sediments are primarily characteristic of anoxic, reduced, hydrocarbon-rich sedimentary habitats. PMID:12032339

  1. Cosmopolitan metapopulations of free-living microbial eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Finlay, Bland J; Fenchel, Tom

    2004-06-01

    Metapopulations of macroscopic organisms tend to be geographically restricted, but free-living protists and other microbial eukaryotes present a different picture. Here we show that most organisms smaller than 1 mm occur worldwide wherever their required habitats are realised. This is a consequence of ubiquitous dispersal driven by huge population sizes, and the consequently low probability of local extinction. Organisms larger than 10 mm are much less abundant, and rarely cosmopolitan. The supporting data, together with the discovery that the 1-10 mm size range accommodates a transition from cosmopolitan to regionally-restricted distribution, were derived from extensive inventories of eukaryotic species in a freshwater pond (1278 species), and a shallow marine bay (785 species). All accessible records were examined to establish the extent of global coverage by these species. Some groups of microbial eukaryotes are severely undersampled (e.g. naked amoebae; marine meiofauna in the southern hemisphere) but this fails to weaken evidence that metapopulations of microbial eukaryotes are cosmopolitan. PMID:15305798

  2. Uniting sex and eukaryote origins in an emerging oxygenic world

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Theories about eukaryote origins (eukaryogenesis) need to provide unified explanations for the emergence of diverse complex features that define this lineage. Models that propose a prokaryote-to-eukaryote transition are gridlocked between the opposing "phagocytosis first" and "mitochondria as seed" paradigms, neither of which fully explain the origins of eukaryote cell complexity. Sex (outcrossing with meiosis) is an example of an elaborate trait not yet satisfactorily addressed in theories about eukaryogenesis. The ancestral nature of meiosis and its dependence on eukaryote cell biology suggest that the emergence of sex and eukaryogenesis were simultaneous and synergic and may be explained by a common selective pressure. Presentation of the hypothesis We propose that a local rise in oxygen levels, due to cyanobacterial photosynthesis in ancient Archean microenvironments, was highly toxic to the surrounding biota. This selective pressure drove the transformation of an archaeal (archaebacterial) lineage into the first eukaryotes. Key is that oxygen might have acted in synergy with environmental stresses such as ultraviolet (UV) radiation and/or desiccation that resulted in the accumulation of reactive oxygen species (ROS). The emergence of eukaryote features such as the endomembrane system and acquisition of the mitochondrion are posited as strategies to cope with a metabolic crisis in the cell plasma membrane and the accumulation of ROS, respectively. Selective pressure for efficient repair of ROS/UV-damaged DNA drove the evolution of sex, which required cell-cell fusions, cytoskeleton-mediated chromosome movement, and emergence of the nuclear envelope. Our model implies that evolution of sex and eukaryogenesis were inseparable processes. Testing the hypothesis Several types of data can be used to test our hypothesis. These include paleontological predictions, simulation of ancient oxygenic microenvironments, and cell biological experiments with Archaea

  3. Eukaryotic Richness in the Abyss: Insights from Pyrotag Sequencing

    PubMed Central

    Pawlowski, Jan; Christen, Richard; Lecroq, Béatrice; Bachar, Dipankar; Shahbazkia, Hamid Reza; Amaral-Zettler, Linda; Guillou, Laure

    2011-01-01

    Background The deep sea floor is considered one of the most diverse ecosystems on Earth. Recent environmental DNA surveys based on clone libraries of rRNA genes confirm this observation and reveal a high diversity of eukaryotes present in deep-sea sediment samples. However, environmental clone-library surveys yield only a modest number of sequences with which to evaluate the diversity of abyssal eukaryotes. Methodology/Principal Findings Here, we examined the richness of eukaryotic DNA in deep Arctic and Southern Ocean samples using massively parallel sequencing of the 18S ribosomal RNA (rRNA) V9 hypervariable region. In very small volumes of sediments, ranging from 0.35 to 0.7 g, we recovered up to 7,499 unique sequences per sample. By clustering sequences having up to 3 differences, we observed from 942 to 1756 Operational Taxonomic Units (OTUs) per sample. Taxonomic analyses of these OTUs showed that DNA of all major groups of eukaryotes is represented at the deep-sea floor. The dinoflagellates, cercozoans, ciliates, and euglenozoans predominate, contributing to 17%, 16%, 10%, and 8% of all assigned OTUs, respectively. Interestingly, many sequences represent photosynthetic taxa or are similar to those reported from the environmental surveys of surface waters. Moreover, each sample contained from 31 to 71 different metazoan OTUs despite the small sample volume collected. This indicates that a significant faction of the eukaryotic DNA sequences likely do not belong to living organisms, but represent either free, extracellular DNA or remains and resting stages of planktonic species. Conclusions/Significance In view of our study, the deep-sea floor appears as a global DNA repository, which preserves genetic information about organisms living in the sediment, as well as in the water column above it. This information can be used for future monitoring of past and present environmental changes. PMID:21483744

  4. Eukaryotic life in biofilms formed in a uranium mine.

    PubMed

    Zirnstein, Isabel; Arnold, Thuro; Krawczyk-Bärsch, Evelyn; Jenk, Ulf; Bernhard, Gert; Röske, Isolde

    2012-06-01

    The underground uranium mine Königstein (Saxony, Germany), currently in the process of remediation, represents an underground acid mine drainage (AMD) environment, that is, low pH conditions and high concentrations of heavy metals including uranium, in which eye-catching biofilm formations were observed. During active uranium mining from 1984 to 1990, technical leaching with sulphuric acid was applied underground on-site resulting in a change of the underground mine environment and initiated the formation of AMD and also the growth of AMD-related copious biofilms. Biofilms grow underground in the mine galleries in a depth of 250 m (50 m above sea level) either as stalactite-like slime communities or as acid streamers in the drainage channels. The eukaryotic diversity of these biofilms was analyzed by microscopic investigations and by molecular methods, that is, 18S rDNA PCR, cloning, and sequencing. The biofilm communities of the Königstein environment showed a low eukaryotic biodiversity and consisted of a variety of groups belonging to nine major taxa: ciliates, flagellates, amoebae, heterolobosea, fungi, apicomplexa, stramenopiles, rotifers and arthropoda, and a large number of uncultured eukaryotes, denoted as acidotolerant eukaryotic cluster (AEC). In Königstein, the flagellates Bodo saltans, the stramenopiles Diplophrys archeri, and the phylum of rotifers, class Bdelloidea, were detected for the first time in an AMD environment characterized by high concentrations of uranium. This study shows that not only bacteria and archaea may live in radioactive contaminated environments, but also species of eukaryotes, clearly indicating their potential influence on carbon cycling and metal immobilization within AMD-affected environment.

  5. Eukaryotic life in biofilms formed in a uranium mine

    PubMed Central

    Zirnstein, Isabel; Arnold, Thuro; Krawczyk-Bärsch, Evelyn; Jenk, Ulf; Bernhard, Gert; Röske, Isolde

    2012-01-01

    The underground uranium mine Königstein (Saxony, Germany), currently in the process of remediation, represents an underground acid mine drainage (AMD) environment, that is, low pH conditions and high concentrations of heavy metals including uranium, in which eye-catching biofilm formations were observed. During active uranium mining from 1984 to 1990, technical leaching with sulphuric acid was applied underground on-site resulting in a change of the underground mine environment and initiated the formation of AMD and also the growth of AMD-related copious biofilms. Biofilms grow underground in the mine galleries in a depth of 250 m (50 m above sea level) either as stalactite-like slime communities or as acid streamers in the drainage channels. The eukaryotic diversity of these biofilms was analyzed by microscopic investigations and by molecular methods, that is, 18S rDNA PCR, cloning, and sequencing. The biofilm communities of the Königstein environment showed a low eukaryotic biodiversity and consisted of a variety of groups belonging to nine major taxa: ciliates, flagellates, amoebae, heterolobosea, fungi, apicomplexa, stramenopiles, rotifers and arthropoda, and a large number of uncultured eukaryotes, denoted as acidotolerant eukaryotic cluster (AEC). In Königstein, the flagellates Bodo saltans, the stramenopiles Diplophrys archeri, and the phylum of rotifers, class Bdelloidea, were detected for the first time in an AMD environment characterized by high concentrations of uranium. This study shows that not only bacteria and archaea may live in radioactive contaminated environments, but also species of eukaryotes, clearly indicating their potential influence on carbon cycling and metal immobilization within AMD-affected environment. PMID:22950016

  6. Higher Education or Higher Skilling?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Muller, Steven

    1974-01-01

    Higher education may return to education for a minority, an unlikely course; concentrate on higher skilling, the road we are on today; or restore general education, the most attractive possibility, which can be implemented by restoring basic education in literacy, history, human biology, and language. (JH)

  7. Do saline taxa evolve faster? Comparing relative rates of molecular evolution between freshwater and marine eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Mitterboeck, T Fatima; Chen, Alexander Y; Zaheer, Omar A; Ma, Eddie Y T; Adamowicz, Sarah J

    2016-09-01

    The major branches of life diversified in the marine realm, and numerous taxa have since transitioned between marine and freshwaters. Previous studies have demonstrated higher rates of molecular evolution in crustaceans inhabiting continental saline habitats as compared with freshwaters, but it is unclear whether this trend is pervasive or whether it applies to the marine environment. We employ the phylogenetic comparative method to investigate relative molecular evolutionary rates between 148 pairs of marine or continental saline versus freshwater lineages representing disparate eukaryote groups, including bony fish, elasmobranchs, cetaceans, crustaceans, mollusks, annelids, algae, and other eukaryotes, using available protein-coding and noncoding genes. Overall, we observed no consistent pattern in nucleotide substitution rates linked to habitat across all genes and taxa. However, we observed some trends of higher evolutionary rates within protein-coding genes in freshwater taxa-the comparisons mainly involving bony fish-compared with their marine relatives. The results suggest no systematic differences in substitution rate between marine and freshwater organisms.

  8. Silicified tests of Cryogenian eukaryotes from the Tayshir Formation, Mongolia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matys, E. D.; Bosak, T.; Lahr, D.; Macdonald, F. A.

    2011-12-01

    Interactions between tectonic, geochemical, climatic and biological processes between ~ 710 and 635 million years ago (Ma) are poorly understood, not least because of the virtual lack of body fossils during this time. We recently discovered eukaryotic tests in stratigraphically unambiguous ~715-635 Ma carbonate strata, a heretofore hidden fossil record of microbial eukaryotes from this time. Here we report silicified eukaryotic tests from the 715-635 million year old grainstone facies of the limestone strata of the Tayshir Formation, Mongolia. The silicified structures are present in the residue after the acid dissolution of the limestone. All structures are hollow, with 3-10 μm thick walls that contain SiO2 and carbonaceous material and form four major stable morphological categories. Most structures within individual morphological categories also contain uniformly sized holes or slits in the recurring location. The hollowness, the constant thickness of the walls, the presence of organic material in the walls, uniformly sized and localized holes indicating former apertures and other recurring morphological characters indicate that these structures are fossilized eukaryotic tests. The tests are morphologically simple and can be grouped into four major categories: lobose triangular, ovate, tear-shaped, reniform, and other. Triangular lobose tests are abundant (N>40), with an up to 433 μm long base and up to 350 μm wide in the perpendicular direction, with openings at one of the lobes. Ovate tests (N>30) are up to 311 μm long, up to 288 μm wide and have centrally located apertures that may preserve former collars or lobes. Tear-shaped, dorso-ventrally asymmetric tests are less frequent (N=15), up to 428 μm long and up to 236 μm wide, with subterminal rounded apertures. Reniform tests are up to 542 μm long, up to 333 μm wide, with openings at one or both ends. Other morphologies are represented by at most 3 individuals. The fossil tests cannot be

  9. Mechanisms of Evolutionary Innovation Point to Genetic Control Logic as the Key Difference Between Prokaryotes and Eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Bains, William; Schulze-Makuch, Dirk

    2015-08-01

    The evolution of life from the simplest, original form to complex, intelligent animal life occurred through a number of key innovations. Here we present a new tool to analyze these key innovations by proposing that the process of evolutionary innovation may follow one of three underlying processes, namely a Random Walk, a Critical Path, or a Many Paths process, and in some instances may also constitute a "Pull-up the Ladder" event. Our analysis is based on the occurrence of function in modern biology, rather than specific structure or mechanism. A function in modern biology may be classified in this way either on the basis of its evolution or the basis of its modern mechanism. Characterizing key innovations in this way helps identify the likelihood that an innovation could arise. In this paper, we describe the classification, and methods to classify functional features of modern organisms into these three classes based on the analysis of how a function is implemented in modern biology. We present the application of our categorization to the evolution of eukaryotic gene control. We use this approach to support the argument that there are few, and possibly no basic chemical differences between the functional constituents of the machinery of gene control between eukaryotes, bacteria and archaea. This suggests that the difference between eukaryotes and prokaryotes that allows the former to develop the complex genetic architecture seen in animals and plants is something other than their chemistry. We tentatively identify the difference as a difference in control logic, that prokaryotic genes are by default 'on' and eukaryotic genes are by default 'off.' The Many Paths evolutionary process suggests that, from a 'default off' starting point, the evolution of the genetic complexity of higher eukaryotes is a high probability event.

  10. Comparison of commercial DNA extraction kits for isolation and purification of bacterial and eukaryotic DNA from PAH-contaminated soils.

    PubMed

    Mahmoudi, Nagissa; Slater, Greg F; Fulthorpe, Roberta R

    2011-08-01

    Molecular characterization of the microbial populations of soils and sediments contaminated with polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) is often a first step in assessing intrinsic biodegradation potential. However, soils are problematic for molecular analysis owing to the presence of organic matter, such as humic acids. Furthermore, the presence of contaminants, such as PAHs, can cause further challenges to DNA extraction, quantification, and amplification. The goal of our study was to compare the effectiveness of four commercial soil DNA extraction kits (UltraClean Soil DNA Isolation kit, PowerSoil DNA Isolation kit, PowerMax Soil DNA Isolation kit, and FastDNA SPIN kit) to extract pure, high-quality bacterial and eukaryotic DNA from PAH-contaminated soils. Six different contaminated soils were used to determine if there were any biases among the kits due to soil properties or level of contamination. Extracted DNA was used as a template for bacterial 16S rDNA and eukaryotic 18S rDNA amplifications, and PCR products were subsequently analyzed using denaturing gel gradient electrophoresis (DGGE). We found that the FastDNA SPIN kit provided significantly higher DNA yields for all soils; however, it also resulted in the highest levels of humic acid contamination. Soil texture and organic carbon content of the soil did not affect the DNA yield of any kit. Moreover, a liquid-liquid extraction of the DNA extracts found no residual PAHs, indicating that all kits were effective at removing contaminants in the extraction process. Although the PowerSoil DNA Isolation kit gave relatively low DNA yields, it provided the highest quality DNA based on successful amplification of both bacterial and eukaryotic DNA for all six soils. DGGE fingerprints among the kits were dramatically different for both bacterial and eukaryotic DNA. The PowerSoil DNA Isolation kit revealed multiple bands for each soil and provided the most consistent DGGE profiles among replicates for both

  11. Influence of vitamin B auxotrophy on nitrogen metabolism in eukaryotic phytoplankton

    PubMed Central

    Bertrand, Erin M.; Allen, Andrew E.

    2012-01-01

    While nitrogen availability is known to limit primary production in large parts of the ocean, vitamin starvation amongst eukaryotic phytoplankton is becoming increasingly recognized as an oceanographically relevant phenomenon. Cobalamin (B12) and thiamine (B1) auxotrophy are widespread throughout eukaryotic phytoplankton, with over 50% of cultured isolates requiring B12 and 20% requiring B1. The frequency of vitamin auxotrophy in harmful algal bloom species is even higher. Instances of colimitation between nitrogen and B vitamins have been observed in marine environments, and interactions between these nutrients have been shown to impact phytoplankton species composition. This review surveys available data, including relevant gene expression patterns, to evaluate the potential for interactive effects of nitrogen and vitamin B12 and B1 starvation in eukaryotic phytoplankton. B12 plays essential roles in amino acid and one-carbon metabolism, while B1 is important for primary carbohydrate and amino acid metabolism and likely useful as an anti-oxidant. Here we will focus on three potential metabolic interconnections between vitamin, nitrogen, and sulfur metabolism that may have ramifications for the role of vitamin and nitrogen scarcities in driving ocean productivity and species composition. These include: (1) B12, B1, and N starvation impacts on osmolyte and antioxidant production, (2) B12 and B1 starvation impacts on polyamine biosynthesis, and (3) influence of B12 and B1 starvation on the diatom urea cycle and amino acid recycling through impacts on the citric acid cycle. We evaluate evidence for these interconnections and identify oceanographic contexts in which each may impact rates of primary production and phytoplankton community composition. Major implications include that B12 and B1 deprivation may impair the ability of phytoplankton to recover from nitrogen starvation and that changes in vitamin and nitrogen availability may synergistically impact harmful

  12. How MCM loading and spreading specify eukaryotic DNA replication initiation sites

    PubMed Central

    Hyrien, Olivier

    2016-01-01

    DNA replication origins strikingly differ between eukaryotic species and cell types. Origins are localized and can be highly efficient in budding yeast, are randomly located in early fly and frog embryos, which do not transcribe their genomes, and are clustered in broad (10-100 kb) non-transcribed zones, frequently abutting transcribed genes, in mammalian cells. Nonetheless, in all cases, origins are established during the G1-phase of the cell cycle by the loading of double hexamers of the Mcm 2-7 proteins (MCM DHs), the core of the replicative helicase. MCM DH activation in S-phase leads to origin unwinding, polymerase recruitment, and initiation of bidirectional DNA synthesis. Although MCM DHs are initially loaded at sites defined by the binding of the origin recognition complex (ORC), they ultimately bind chromatin in much greater numbers than ORC and only a fraction are activated in any one S-phase. Data suggest that the multiplicity and functional redundancy of MCM DHs provide robustness to the replication process and affect replication time and that MCM DHs can slide along the DNA and spread over large distances around the ORC. Recent studies further show that MCM DHs are displaced along the DNA by collision with transcription complexes but remain functional for initiation after displacement. Therefore, eukaryotic DNA replication relies on intrinsically mobile and flexible origins, a strategy fundamentally different from bacteria but conserved from yeast to human. These properties of MCM DHs likely contribute to the establishment of broad, intergenic replication initiation zones in higher eukaryotes.

  13. Eukaryotic class II cyclobutane pyrimidine dimer photolyase structure reveals basis for improved ultraviolet tolerance in plants.

    PubMed

    Hitomi, Kenichi; Arvai, Andrew S; Yamamoto, Junpei; Hitomi, Chiharu; Teranishi, Mika; Hirouchi, Tokuhisa; Yamamoto, Kazuo; Iwai, Shigenori; Tainer, John A; Hidema, Jun; Getzoff, Elizabeth D

    2012-04-01

    Ozone depletion increases terrestrial solar ultraviolet B (UV-B; 280-315 nm) radiation, intensifying the risks plants face from DNA damage, especially covalent cyclobutane pyrimidine dimers (CPD). Without efficient repair, UV-B destroys genetic integrity, but plant breeding creates rice cultivars with more robust photolyase (PHR) DNA repair activity as an environmental adaptation. So improved strains of Oryza sativa (rice), the staple food for Asia, have expanded rice cultivation worldwide. Efficient light-driven PHR enzymes restore normal pyrimidines to UV-damaged DNA by using blue light via flavin adenine dinucleotide to break pyrimidine dimers. Eukaryotes duplicated the photolyase gene, producing PHRs that gained functions and adopted activities that are distinct from those of prokaryotic PHRs yet are incompletely understood. Many multicellular organisms have two types of PHR: (6-4) PHR, which structurally resembles bacterial CPD PHRs but recognizes different substrates, and Class II CPD PHR, which is remarkably dissimilar in sequence from bacterial PHRs despite their common substrate. To understand the enigmatic DNA repair mechanisms of PHRs in eukaryotic cells, we determined the first crystal structure of a eukaryotic Class II CPD PHR from the rice cultivar Sasanishiki. Our 1.7 Å resolution PHR structure reveals structure-activity relationships in Class II PHRs and tuning for enhanced UV tolerance in plants. Structural comparisons with prokaryotic Class I CPD PHRs identified differences in the binding site for UV-damaged DNA substrate. Convergent evolution of both flavin hydrogen bonding and a Trp electron transfer pathway establish these as critical functional features for PHRs. These results provide a paradigm for light-dependent DNA repair in higher organisms. PMID:22170053

  14. How MCM loading and spreading specify eukaryotic DNA replication initiation sites

    PubMed Central

    Hyrien, Olivier

    2016-01-01

    DNA replication origins strikingly differ between eukaryotic species and cell types. Origins are localized and can be highly efficient in budding yeast, are randomly located in early fly and frog embryos, which do not transcribe their genomes, and are clustered in broad (10-100 kb) non-transcribed zones, frequently abutting transcribed genes, in mammalian cells. Nonetheless, in all cases, origins are established during the G1-phase of the cell cycle by the loading of double hexamers of the Mcm 2-7 proteins (MCM DHs), the core of the replicative helicase. MCM DH activation in S-phase leads to origin unwinding, polymerase recruitment, and initiation of bidirectional DNA synthesis. Although MCM DHs are initially loaded at sites defined by the binding of the origin recognition complex (ORC), they ultimately bind chromatin in much greater numbers than ORC and only a fraction are activated in any one S-phase. Data suggest that the multiplicity and functional redundancy of MCM DHs provide robustness to the replication process and affect replication time and that MCM DHs can slide along the DNA and spread over large distances around the ORC. Recent studies further show that MCM DHs are displaced along the DNA by collision with transcription complexes but remain functional for initiation after displacement. Therefore, eukaryotic DNA replication relies on intrinsically mobile and flexible origins, a strategy fundamentally different from bacteria but conserved from yeast to human. These properties of MCM DHs likely contribute to the establishment of broad, intergenic replication initiation zones in higher eukaryotes. PMID:27635237

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

  16. How MCM loading and spreading specify eukaryotic DNA replication initiation sites.

    PubMed

    Hyrien, Olivier

    2016-01-01

    DNA replication origins strikingly differ between eukaryotic species and cell types. Origins are localized and can be highly efficient in budding yeast, are randomly located in early fly and frog embryos, which do not transcribe their genomes, and are clustered in broad (10-100 kb) non-transcribed zones, frequently abutting transcribed genes, in mammalian cells. Nonetheless, in all cases, origins are established during the G1-phase of the cell cycle by the loading of double hexamers of the Mcm 2-7 proteins (MCM DHs), the core of the replicative helicase. MCM DH activation in S-phase leads to origin unwinding, polymerase recruitment, and initiation of bidirectional DNA synthesis. Although MCM DHs are initially loaded at sites defined by the binding of the origin recognition complex (ORC), they ultimately bind chromatin in much greater numbers than ORC and only a fraction are activated in any one S-phase. Data suggest that the multiplicity and functional redundancy of MCM DHs provide robustness to the replication process and affect replication time and that MCM DHs can slide along the DNA and spread over large distances around the ORC. Recent studies further show that MCM DHs are displaced along the DNA by collision with transcription complexes but remain functional for initiation after displacement. Therefore, eukaryotic DNA replication relies on intrinsically mobile and flexible origins, a strategy fundamentally different from bacteria but conserved from yeast to human. These properties of MCM DHs likely contribute to the establishment of broad, intergenic replication initiation zones in higher eukaryotes. PMID:27635237

  17. Higher Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hendrickson, Robert M.

    This eighth chapter of "The Yearbook of School Law, 1986" summarizes and analyzes over 330 state and federal court cases litigated in 1985 in which institutions of higher education were involved. Among the topics examined were relationships between postsecondary institutions and various governmental agencies; discrimination in the employment of…

  18. Higher Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hendrickson, Robert M.; Gregory, Dennis E.

    Decisions made by federal and state courts during 1983 concerning higher education are reported in this chapter. Issues of employment and the treatment of students underlay the bulk of the litigation. Specific topics addressed in these and other cases included federal authority to enforce regulations against age discrimination and to revoke an…

  19. Higher Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hendrickson, Robert M.

    Litigation in 1987 was very brisk with an increase in the number of higher education cases reviewed. Cases discussed in this chapter are organized under four major topics: (1) intergovernmental relations; (2) employees, involving discrimination claims, tenured and nontenured faculty, collective bargaining and denial of employee benefits; (3)…

  20. Higher Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hendrickson, Robert M.; Finnegan, Dorothy E.

    The higher education case law in 1988 is extensive. Cases discussed in this chapter are organized under five major topics: (1) intergovernmental relations; (2) employees, involving discrimination claims, tenured and nontenured faculty, collective bargaining, and denial of employee benefits; (3) students, involving admissions, financial aid, First…

  1. Higher Learning.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bok, Derek

    Factors that distinguish the United States higher education system and its performance are considered, with attention to new developments, propsects for change, undergraduate education, and professional schools (especially law, business, and medicine). The way universities change the methods and content of their teaching in response to new…

  2. Modification of Bacterial Effector Proteins Inside Eukaryotic Host Cells

    PubMed Central

    Popa, Crina M.; Tabuchi, Mitsuaki; Valls, Marc

    2016-01-01

    Pathogenic bacteria manipulate their hosts by delivering a number of virulence proteins -called effectors- directly into the plant or animal cells. Recent findings have shown that such effectors can suffer covalent modifications inside the eukaryotic cells. Here, we summarize the recent reports where effector modifications by the eukaryotic machinery have been described. We restrict our focus on proteins secreted by the type III or type IV systems, excluding other bacterial toxins. We describe the known examples of effectors whose enzymatic activity is triggered by interaction with plant and animal cell factors, including GTPases, E2-Ubiquitin conjugates, cyclophilin and thioredoxins. We focus on the structural interactions with these factors and their influence on effector function. We also review the described examples of host-mediated post-translational effector modifications which are required for proper subcellular location and function. These host-specific covalent modifications include phosphorylation, ubiquitination, SUMOylation, and lipidations such as prenylation, fatty acylation and phospholipid binding. PMID:27489796

  3. Widespread occurrence of norspermidine and norspermine in eukaryotic algae.

    PubMed

    Hamana, K; Matsuzaki, S

    1982-04-01

    Seven phyla of eukaryotic algae were analyzed to determine their contents of diamines and polyamines. The algae examined included Rhodophyta, Pyrrophyta, Chrysophyta, Phaeophyta, Euglenophyta, Chlorophyta, and Charophyta. Both putrescine and spermidine were detected in all the algae studied, while appreciable amounts of spermine were detected only in a few species of algae. 1,3-Diaminopropane, norspermidine, and norspermine, which are chemical analogs of putrescine, spermidine, and spermine, respectively, were widely distributed in various species of algae. There was no parallelism between the distribution patterns of putrescine derivatives and those of 1,3-diaminopropane derivatives. Cadaverine and agmatine were detected in multicellular marine algae. Homospermidine was detected sporadically in some algae. The biological and phylogenetical significance of polyamines in these lower eukaryotes is discussed.

  4. Expression of Eukaryotic Membrane Proteins in Pichia pastoris.

    PubMed

    Hartmann, Lucie; Kugler, Valérie; Wagner, Renaud

    2016-01-01

    A key point when it comes to heterologous expression of eukaryotic membrane proteins (EMPs) is the choice of the best-suited expression platform. The yeast Pichia pastoris has proven to be a very versatile system showing promising results in a growing number of cases. Indeed, its particular methylotrophic characteristics combined to the very simple handling of a eukaryotic microorganism that possesses the majority of mammalian-like machineries make it a very competitive expression system for various complex proteins, in amounts compatible with functional and structural studies. This chapter describes a set of robust methodologies routinely used for the successful expression of a variety of EMPs, going from yeast transformation with the recombinant plasmid to the analysis of the quality and quantity of the proteins produced. PMID:27485335

  5. A collection of intrinsic disorder characterizations from eukaryotic proteomes

    PubMed Central

    Vincent, Michael; Schnell, Santiago

    2016-01-01

    Intrinsically disordered proteins and protein regions lack a stable three-dimensional structure under physiological conditions. Several proteomic investigations of intrinsic disorder have been performed to date and have found disorder to be prevalent in eukaryotic proteomes. Here we present descriptive statistics of intrinsic disorder features for ten model eukaryotic proteomes that have been calculated from computational disorder prediction algorithms. The data descriptor also provides consensus disorder annotations as well as additional physical parameters relevant to protein disorder, and further provides protein existence information for all proteins included in our analysis. The complete datasets can be downloaded freely, and it is envisaged that they will be updated periodically with new proteomes and protein disorder prediction algorithms. These datasets will be especially useful for assessing protein disorder, and conducting novel analyses that advance our understanding of intrinsic disorder and protein structure. PMID:27326998

  6. Expression of Eukaryotic Membrane Proteins in Pichia pastoris.

    PubMed

    Hartmann, Lucie; Kugler, Valérie; Wagner, Renaud

    2016-01-01

    A key point when it comes to heterologous expression of eukaryotic membrane proteins (EMPs) is the choice of the best-suited expression platform. The yeast Pichia pastoris has proven to be a very versatile system showing promising results in a growing number of cases. Indeed, its particular methylotrophic characteristics combined to the very simple handling of a eukaryotic microorganism that possesses the majority of mammalian-like machineries make it a very competitive expression system for various complex proteins, in amounts compatible with functional and structural studies. This chapter describes a set of robust methodologies routinely used for the successful expression of a variety of EMPs, going from yeast transformation with the recombinant plasmid to the analysis of the quality and quantity of the proteins produced.

  7. Modification of Bacterial Effector Proteins Inside Eukaryotic Host Cells.

    PubMed

    Popa, Crina M; Tabuchi, Mitsuaki; Valls, Marc

    2016-01-01

    Pathogenic bacteria manipulate their hosts by delivering a number of virulence proteins -called effectors- directly into the plant or animal cells. Recent findings have shown that such effectors can suffer covalent modifications inside the eukaryotic cells. Here, we summarize the recent reports where effector modifications by the eukaryotic machinery have been described. We restrict our focus on proteins secreted by the type III or type IV systems, excluding other bacterial toxins. We describe the known examples of effectors whose enzymatic activity is triggered by interaction with plant and animal cell factors, including GTPases, E2-Ubiquitin conjugates, cyclophilin and thioredoxins. We focus on the structural interactions with these factors and their influence on effector function. We also review the described examples of host-mediated post-translational effector modifications which are required for proper subcellular location and function. These host-specific covalent modifications include phosphorylation, ubiquitination, SUMOylation, and lipidations such as prenylation, fatty acylation and phospholipid binding.

  8. Structural basis for the inhibition of the eukaryotic ribosome.

    PubMed

    Garreau de Loubresse, Nicolas; Prokhorova, Irina; Holtkamp, Wolf; Rodnina, Marina V; Yusupova, Gulnara; Yusupov, Marat

    2014-09-25

    The ribosome is a molecular machine responsible for protein synthesis and a major target for small-molecule inhibitors. Compared to the wealth of structural information available on ribosome-targeting antibiotics in bacteria, our understanding of the binding mode of ribosome inhibitors in eukaryotes is currently limited. Here we used X-ray crystallography to determine 16 high-resolution structures of 80S ribosomes from Saccharomyces cerevisiae in complexes with 12 eukaryote-specific and 4 broad-spectrum inhibitors. All inhibitors were found associated with messenger RNA and transfer RNA binding sites. In combination with kinetic experiments, the structures suggest a model for the action of cycloheximide and lactimidomycin, which explains why lactimidomycin, the larger compound, specifically targets the first elongation cycle. The study defines common principles of targeting and resistance, provides insights into translation inhibitor mode of action and reveals the structural determinants responsible for species selectivity which could guide future drug development.

  9. Cas9-mediated targeting of viral RNA in eukaryotic cells.

    PubMed

    Price, Aryn A; Sampson, Timothy R; Ratner, Hannah K; Grakoui, Arash; Weiss, David S

    2015-05-12

    Clustered, regularly interspaced, short palindromic repeats-CRISPR associated (CRISPR-Cas) systems are prokaryotic RNA-directed endonuclease machineries that act as an adaptive immune system against foreign genetic elements. Using small CRISPR RNAs that provide specificity, Cas proteins recognize and degrade nucleic acids. Our previous work demonstrated that the Cas9 endonuclease from Francisella novicida (FnCas9) is capable of targeting endogenous bacterial RNA. Here, we show that FnCas9 can be directed by an engineered RNA-targeting guide RNA to target and inhibit a human +ssRNA virus, hepatitis C virus, within eukaryotic cells. This work reveals a versatile and portable RNA-targeting system that can effectively function in eukaryotic cells and be programmed as an antiviral defense.

  10. Kinetic model of DNA replication in eukaryotic organisms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bechhoefer, John; Herrick, John; Bensimon, Aaron

    2001-03-01

    We introduce an analogy between DNA replication in eukaryotic organisms and crystal growth in one dimension. Drawing on models of crystallization kinetics developed in the 1930s to describe the freezing of metals, we formulate a kinetic model of DNA replication that quantitatively describes recent results on DNA replication in the in vitro system of Xenopus laevis prior to the mid-blastula transition. It allows one, for the first time, to determine the parameters governing the DNA replication program in a eukaryote on a genome-wide basis. In particular, we have determined the frequency of origin activation in time and space during the cell cycle. Although we focus on a specific stage of development, this model can easily be adapted to describe replication in many other organisms, including budding yeast.

  11. Heterosides--compatible solutes occurring in prokaryotic and eukaryotic phototrophs.

    PubMed

    Hagemann, M; Pade, N

    2015-09-01

    The acclimation to osmotic and/or salt stress conditions induces an integrated response at different cellular levels. One acclimation strategy relies on the massive accumulation of low molecular mass compounds, so-called compatible solutes, to balance osmotic gradients and to directly protect critical macromolecules. Heterosides are compounds composed of a sugar and a polyol moiety that represent one chemical class of compatible solutes with interesting features. Well-investigated examples are glucosylglycerol, which is found in many cyanobacteria, and galactosylglycerols (floridoside and isofloridoside), which are accumulated by eukaryotic algae under salt stress conditions. Here, we review knowledge on physiology, biochemistry and genetics of heteroside accumulation in pro- and eukaryotic photoautotrophic organisms. PMID:25996303

  12. Geographic variation in the eukaryotic virome of human diarrhea.

    PubMed

    Holtz, Lori R; Cao, Song; Zhao, Guoyan; Bauer, Irma K; Denno, Donna M; Klein, Eileen J; Antonio, Martin; Stine, O Colin; Snelling, Thomas L; Kirkwood, Carl D; Wang, David

    2014-11-01

    Little is known about the population of eukaryotic viruses in the human gut ("virome") or the potential role it may play in disease. We used a metagenomic approach to define and compare the eukaryotic viromes in pediatric diarrhea cohorts from two locations (Melbourne and Northern Territory, Australia). We detected viruses known to cause diarrhea, non-pathogenic enteric viruses, viruses not associated with an enteric reservoir, viruses of plants, and novel viruses. Viromes from Northern Territory children contained more viral families per sample than viromes from Melbourne, which could be attributed largely to an increased number of sequences from the families Adenoviridae and Picornaviridae (genus enterovirus). qRT-PCR/PCR confirmed the increased prevalence of adenoviruses and enteroviruses. Testing of additional diarrhea cohorts by qRT-PCR/PCR demonstrated statistically different prevalences in different geographic sites. These findings raise the question of whether the virome plays a role in enteric diseases and conditions that vary with geography. PMID:25262473

  13. "Race for the Surface": Eukaryotic Cells Can Win.

    PubMed

    Pham, Vy T H; Truong, Vi Khanh; Orlowska, Anna; Ghanaati, Shahram; Barbeck, Mike; Booms, Patrick; Fulcher, Alex J; Bhadra, Chris M; Buividas, Ričardas; Baulin, Vladimir; Kirkpatrick, C James; Doran, Pauline; Mainwaring, David E; Juodkazis, Saulius; Crawford, Russell J; Ivanova, Elena P

    2016-08-31

    With an aging population and the consequent increasing use of medical implants, managing the possible infections arising from implant surgery remains a global challenge. Here, we demonstrate for the first time that a precise nanotopology provides an effective intervention in bacterial cocolonization enabling the proliferation of eukaryotic cells on a substratum surface, preinfected by both live Gram-negative, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Gram-positive, Staphylococcus aureus, pathogenic bacteria. The topology of the model black silicon (bSi) substratum not only favors the proliferation of eukaryotic cells but is biocompatible, not triggering an inflammatory response in the host. The attachment behavior and development of filopodia when COS-7 fibroblast cells are placed in contact with the bSi surface are demonstrated in the dynamic study, which is based on the use of real-time sequential confocal imaging. Bactericidal nanotopology may enhance the prospect for further development of inherently responsive antibacterial nanomaterials for bionic applications such as prosthetics and implants.

  14. Production of eukaryotic cell-free lysate from Leishmania tarentolae.

    PubMed

    Johnston, Wayne A; Alexandrov, Kirill

    2014-01-01

    In this chapter, we describe the production and application of a eukaryotic cell-free expression system based on Leishmania tarentolae. This single-celled flagellate allows straightforward and inexpensive cultivation in flasks or bioreactors. Unlike many other Leishmania species, it is nonpathogenic to humans and does not require special laboratory precautions. An additional reason it is a convenient source organism for cell-free lysate production is that all endogenous protein expression can be suppressed by a single antisense oligonucleotide targeting splice leader sequence on the 5'-end of all protein coding RNAs. We describe simple procedures for cell disruption and lysate processing starting from bioreactor culture. We also describe introduction of genetic information via vectors containing species-independent translation initiation sites (SITS). We consider that such an inexpensive eukaryotic cell-free production system has many advantages when expressing multi-subunit proteins or difficult to express proteins. PMID:24395406

  15. Noise places constraints on eukaryotic gradient sensing and chemotaxis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Bo; Fuller, Danny; Loomis, William; Chen, Wen; Rappel, Wouter-Jan; Levine, Herbert

    2012-02-01

    Chemotaxis is characterized by the directional cell movement following external chemical gradients. It plays a crucial role in a variety of biological processes including neuronal development, wound healing and cancer metastasis. Ultimately, the accuracy of gradient sensing is limited by the fluctuations of signaling components, e.g. the stochastic receptor occupancy on cell surface. We use concepts and techniques from statistical physics, estimation theory, and information theory to quantify the stochastic and nonlinear information processing in eukaryotic chemotaxis. We mainly address the following questions: (1) What are the physical limits of eukaryotic spatial gradient sensing? (2) How to characterize the movements of chemotactic cells? (3) How much gradient information can be reliably gained by a chemotactic cell? By answering those questions, we expect to derive new insights for general biological signal processing systems.

  16. The eukaryotic CMG helicase pumpjack and integration into the replisome

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Jingchuan; Yuan, Zuanning; Georgescu, Roxanna; Li, Huilin; O'Donnell, Mike

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT The eukaryotic replisome is α multiprotein machine that contains DNA polymerases, sliding clamps, helicase, and primase along with several factors that participate in cell cycle and checkpoint control. The detailed structure of the 11-subunit CMG helicase (Cdc45/Mcm2-7/GINS) has been solved recently by cryoEM single-particle 3D reconstruction and reveals pumpjack motions that imply an unexpected mechanism of DNA translocation. CMG is also the organizing center of the replisome. Recent in vitro reconstitution of leading and lagging strand DNA synthesis has enabled structural analysis of the replisome. By building the replisome in stages from pure proteins, single-particle EM studies have identified the overall architecture of the eukaryotic replisome. Suprisingly leading and lagging strand polymerases bind to opposite faces of the CMG helicase, unlike the long-held view that DNA polymerases are located in back of the helicase to act on the unwound strands. PMID:27310307

  17. Noise and synchronization in pairs of beating eukaryotic flagella.

    PubMed

    Goldstein, Raymond E; Polin, Marco; Tuval, Idan

    2009-10-16

    It has long been conjectured that hydrodynamic interactions between beating eukaryotic flagella underlie their ubiquitous forms of synchronization; yet there has been no experimental test of this connection. The biflagellate alga Chlamydomonas is a simple model for such studies, as its two flagella are representative of those most commonly found in eukaryotes. Using micromanipulation and high-speed imaging, we show that the flagella of a C. reinhardtii cell present periods of synchronization interrupted by phase slips. The dynamics of slips and the statistics of phase-locked intervals are consistent with a low-dimensional stochastic model of hydrodynamically coupled oscillators, with a noise amplitude set by the intrinsic fluctuations of single flagellar beats.

  18. Noise and Synchronization in Pairs of Beating Eukaryotic Flagella

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goldstein, Raymond E.; Polin, Marco; Tuval, Idan

    2009-10-01

    It has long been conjectured that hydrodynamic interactions between beating eukaryotic flagella underlie their ubiquitous forms of synchronization; yet there has been no experimental test of this connection. The biflagellate alga Chlamydomonas is a simple model for such studies, as its two flagella are representative of those most commonly found in eukaryotes. Using micromanipulation and high-speed imaging, we show that the flagella of a C. reinhardtii cell present periods of synchronization interrupted by phase slips. The dynamics of slips and the statistics of phase-locked intervals are consistent with a low-dimensional stochastic model of hydrodynamically coupled oscillators, with a noise amplitude set by the intrinsic fluctuations of single flagellar beats.

  19. Biogenesis and Assembly of Eukaryotic Cytochrome c Oxidase Catalytic Core

    PubMed Central

    Soto, Ileana C.; Fontanesi, Flavia; Liu, Jingjing; Barrientos, Antoni

    2011-01-01

    Eukaryotic cytochrome c oxidase (COX) is the terminal enzyme of the mitochondrial respiratory chain. COX is a multimeric enzyme formed by subunits of dual genetic origin which assembly is intricate and highly regulated. The COX catalytic core is formed by three mitochondrial DNA encoded subunits, Cox1, Cox2 and Cox3, conserved in the bacterial enzyme. Their biogenesis requires the action of messenger-specific and subunit-specific factors which facilitate the synthesis, membrane insertion, maturation or assembly of the core subunits. The study of yeast strains and human cell lines from patients carrying mutations in structural subunits and COX assembly factors has been invaluable to identify these ancillary factors. Here we review the current state of knowledge of the biogenesis and assembly of the eukaryotic COX catalytic core and discuss the degree of conservation of the players and mechanisms operating from yeast to human. PMID:21958598

  20. Regulated Eukaryotic DNA Replication Origin Firing with Purified Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Yeeles, Joseph T.P.; Deegan, Tom D.; Janska, Agnieszka; Early, Anne; Diffley, John F. X.

    2016-01-01

    Eukaryotic cells initiate DNA replication from multiple origins, which must be tightly regulated to promote precise genome duplication in every cell cycle. To accomplish this, initiation is partitioned into two temporally discrete steps: a double hexameric MCM complex is first loaded at replication origins during G1 phase, and then converted to the active CMG (Cdc45, MCM, GINS) helicase during S phase. Here we describe the reconstitution of budding yeast DNA replication initiation with 16 purified replication factors, made from 42 polypeptides. Origin-dependent initiation recapitulates regulation seen in vivo. Cyclin dependent kinase (CDK) inhibits MCM loading by phosphorylating the origin recognition complex (ORC) and promotes CMG formation by phosphorylating Sld2 and Sld3. Dbf4 dependent kinase (DDK) promotes replication by phosphorylating MCM, and can act either before or after CDK. These experiments define the minimum complement of proteins, protein kinase substrates and co-factors required for regulated eukaryotic DNA replication. PMID:25739503

  1. Regulated eukaryotic DNA replication origin firing with purified proteins.

    PubMed

    Yeeles, Joseph T P; Deegan, Tom D; Janska, Agnieszka; Early, Anne; Diffley, John F X

    2015-03-26

    Eukaryotic cells initiate DNA replication from multiple origins, which must be tightly regulated to promote precise genome duplication in every cell cycle. To accomplish this, initiation is partitioned into two temporally discrete steps: a double hexameric minichromosome maintenance (MCM) complex is first loaded at replication origins during G1 phase, and then converted to the active CMG (Cdc45-MCM-GINS) helicase during S phase. Here we describe the reconstitution of budding yeast DNA replication initiation with 16 purified replication factors, made from 42 polypeptides. Origin-dependent initiation recapitulates regulation seen in vivo. Cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK) inhibits MCM loading by phosphorylating the origin recognition complex (ORC) and promotes CMG formation by phosphorylating Sld2 and Sld3. Dbf4-dependent kinase (DDK) promotes replication by phosphorylating MCM, and can act either before or after CDK. These experiments define the minimum complement of proteins, protein kinase substrates and co-factors required for regulated eukaryotic DNA replication. PMID:25739503

  2. A bacterial proteorhodopsin proton pump in marine eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Slamovits, Claudio H; Okamoto, Noriko; Burri, Lena; James, Erick R; Keeling, Patrick J

    2011-01-01

    Proteorhodopsins are light-driven proton pumps involved in widespread phototrophy. Discovered in marine proteobacteria just 10 years ago, proteorhodopsins are now known to have been spread by lateral gene transfer across diverse prokaryotes, but are curiously absent from eukaryotes. In this study, we show that proteorhodopsins have been acquired by horizontal gene transfer from bacteria at least twice independently in dinoflagellate protists. We find that in the marine predator Oxyrrhis marina, proteorhodopsin is indeed the most abundantly expressed nuclear gene and its product localizes to discrete cytoplasmic structures suggestive of the endomembrane system. To date, photosystems I and II have been the only known mechanism for transducing solar energy in eukaryotes; however, it now appears that some abundant zooplankton use this alternative pathway to harness light to power biological functions.

  3. Geographic variation in the eukaryotic virome of human diarrhea.

    PubMed

    Holtz, Lori R; Cao, Song; Zhao, Guoyan; Bauer, Irma K; Denno, Donna M; Klein, Eileen J; Antonio, Martin; Stine, O Colin; Snelling, Thomas L; Kirkwood, Carl D; Wang, David

    2014-11-01

    Little is known about the population of eukaryotic viruses in the human gut ("virome") or the potential role it may play in disease. We used a metagenomic approach to define and compare the eukaryotic viromes in pediatric diarrhea cohorts from two locations (Melbourne and Northern Territory, Australia). We detected viruses known to cause diarrhea, non-pathogenic enteric viruses, viruses not associated with an enteric reservoir, viruses of plants, and novel viruses. Viromes from Northern Territory children contained more viral families per sample than viromes from Melbourne, which could be attributed largely to an increased number of sequences from the families Adenoviridae and Picornaviridae (genus enterovirus). qRT-PCR/PCR confirmed the increased prevalence of adenoviruses and enteroviruses. Testing of additional diarrhea cohorts by qRT-PCR/PCR demonstrated statistically different prevalences in different geographic sites. These findings raise the question of whether the virome plays a role in enteric diseases and conditions that vary with geography.

  4. GWFASTA: server for FASTA search in eukaryotic and microbial genomes.

    PubMed

    Issac, Biju; Raghava, G P S

    2002-09-01

    Similarity searches are a powerful method for solving important biological problems such as database scanning, evolutionary studies, gene prediction, and protein structure prediction. FASTA is a widely used sequence comparison tool for rapid database scanning. Here we describe the GWFASTA server that was developed to assist the FASTA user in similarity searches against partially and/or completely sequenced genomes. GWFASTA consists of more than 60 microbial genomes, eight eukaryote genomes, and proteomes of annotatedgenomes. Infact, it provides the maximum number of databases for similarity searching from a single platform. GWFASTA allows the submission of more than one sequence as a single query for a FASTA search. It also provides integrated post-processing of FASTA output, including compositional analysis of proteins, multiple sequences alignment, and phylogenetic analysis. Furthermore, it summarizes the search results organism-wise for prokaryotes and chromosome-wise for eukaryotes. Thus, the integration of different tools for sequence analyses makes GWFASTA a powerful toolfor biologists. PMID:12238765

  5. Energizing eukaryotic cell-free protein synthesis with glucose metabolism.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Mark J; Stark, Jessica C; Hodgman, C Eric; Jewett, Michael C

    2015-07-01

    Eukaryotic cell-free protein synthesis (CFPS) is limited by the dependence on costly high-energy phosphate compounds and exogenous enzymes to power protein synthesis (e.g., creatine phosphate and creatine kinase, CrP/CrK). Here, we report the ability to use glucose as a secondary energy substrate to regenerate ATP in a Saccharomyces cerevisiae crude extract CFPS platform. We observed synthesis of 3.64±0.35 μg mL(-1) active luciferase in batch reactions with 16 mM glucose and 25 mM phosphate, resulting in a 16% increase in relative protein yield (μg protein/$ reagents) compared to the CrP/CrK system. Our demonstration provides the foundation for development of cost-effective eukaryotic CFPS platforms.

  6. Replication and transcription of eukaryotic DNA in Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Morrow, J F; Cohen, S N; Chang, A C; Boyer, H W; Goodman, H M; Helling, R B

    1974-05-01

    Fragments of amplified Xenopus laevis DNA, coding for 18S and 28S ribosomal RNA and generated by EcoRI restriction endonuclease, have been linked in vitro to the bacterial plasmid pSC101; and the recombinant molecular species have been introduced into E. coli by transformation. These recombinant plasmids, containing both eukaryotic and prokaryotic DNA, replicate stably in E. coli. RNA isolated from E. coli minicells harboring the plasmids hybridizes to amplified X. laevis rDNA.

  7. Hydrodynamics Versus Intracellular Coupling in the Synchronization of Eukaryotic Flagella.

    PubMed

    Quaranta, Greta; Aubin-Tam, Marie-Eve; Tam, Daniel

    2015-12-01

    The influence of hydrodynamic forces on eukaryotic flagella synchronization is investigated by triggering phase locking between a controlled external flow and the flagella of C. reinhardtii. Hydrodynamic forces required for synchronization are over an order of magnitude larger than hydrodynamic forces experienced in physiological conditions. Our results suggest that synchronization is due instead to coupling through cell internal fibers connecting the flagella. This conclusion is confirmed by observations of the vfl3 mutant, with impaired mechanical connection between the flagella. PMID:26684142

  8. Hydrodynamics Versus Intracellular Coupling in the Synchronization of Eukaryotic Flagella

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Quaranta, Greta; Aubin-Tam, Marie-Eve; Tam, Daniel

    2015-12-01

    The influence of hydrodynamic forces on eukaryotic flagella synchronization is investigated by triggering phase locking between a controlled external flow and the flagella of C. reinhardtii. Hydrodynamic forces required for synchronization are over an order of magnitude larger than hydrodynamic forces experienced in physiological conditions. Our results suggest that synchronization is due instead to coupling through cell internal fibers connecting the flagella. This conclusion is confirmed by observations of the vfl3 mutant, with impaired mechanical connection between the flagella.

  9. Eukaryotic V-ATPase: novel structural findings and functional insights.

    PubMed

    Marshansky, Vladimir; Rubinstein, John L; Grüber, Gerhard

    2014-06-01

    The eukaryotic V-type adenosine triphosphatase (V-ATPase) is a multi-subunit membrane protein complex that is evolutionarily related to F-type adenosine triphosphate (ATP) synthases and A-ATP synthases. These ATPases/ATP synthases are functionally conserved and operate as rotary proton-pumping nano-motors, invented by Nature billions of years ago. In the first part of this review we will focus on recent structural findings of eukaryotic V-ATPases and discuss the role of different subunits in the function of the V-ATPase holocomplex. Despite structural and functional similarities between rotary ATPases, the eukaryotic V-ATPases are the most complex enzymes that have acquired some unconventional cellular functions during evolution. In particular, the novel roles of V-ATPases in the regulation of cellular receptors and their trafficking via endocytotic and exocytotic pathways were recently uncovered. In the second part of this review we will discuss these unique roles of V-ATPases in modulation of function of cellular receptors, involved in the development and progression of diseases such as cancer and diabetes as well as neurodegenerative and kidney disorders. Moreover, it was recently revealed that the V-ATPase itself functions as an evolutionarily conserved pH sensor and receptor for cytohesin-2/Arf-family GTP-binding proteins. Thus, in the third part of the review we will evaluate the structural basis for and functional insights into this novel concept, followed by the analysis of the potentially essential role of V-ATPase in the regulation of this signaling pathway in health and disease. Finally, future prospects for structural and functional studies of the eukaryotic V-ATPase will be discussed.

  10. Function of prokaryotic and eukaryotic ABC proteins in lipid transport.

    PubMed

    Pohl, Antje; Devaux, Philippe F; Herrmann, Andreas

    2005-03-21

    ATP binding cassette (ABC) proteins of both eukaryotic and prokaryotic origins are implicated in the transport of lipids. In humans, members of the ABC protein families A, B, C, D and G are mutated in a number of lipid transport and metabolism disorders, such as Tangier disease, Stargardt syndrome, progressive familial intrahepatic cholestasis, pseudoxanthoma elasticum, adrenoleukodystrophy or sitosterolemia. Studies employing transfection, overexpression, reconstitution, deletion and inhibition indicate the transbilayer transport of endogenous lipids and their analogs by some of these proteins, modulating lipid transbilayer asymmetry. Other proteins appear to be involved in the exposure of specific lipids on the exoplasmic leaflet, allowing their uptake by acceptors and further transport to specific sites. Additionally, lipid transport by ABC proteins is currently being studied in non-human eukaryotes, e.g. in sea urchin, trypanosomatides, arabidopsis and yeast, as well as in prokaryotes such as Escherichia coli and Lactococcus lactis. Here, we review current information about the (putative) role of both pro- and eukaryotic ABC proteins in the various phenomena associated with lipid transport. Besides providing a better understanding of phenomena like lipid metabolism, circulation, multidrug resistance, hormonal processes, fertilization, vision and signalling, studies on pro- and eukaryotic ABC proteins might eventually enable us to put a name on some of the proteins mediating transbilayer lipid transport in various membranes of cells and organelles. It must be emphasized, however, that there are still many uncertainties concerning the functions and mechanisms of ABC proteins interacting with lipids. In particular, further purification and reconstitution experiments with an unambiguous role of ATP hydrolysis are needed to demonstrate a clear involvement of ABC proteins in lipid transbilayer asymmetry. PMID:15749056

  11. Hydrodynamics Versus Intracellular Coupling in the Synchronization of Eukaryotic Flagella.

    PubMed

    Quaranta, Greta; Aubin-Tam, Marie-Eve; Tam, Daniel

    2015-12-01

    The influence of hydrodynamic forces on eukaryotic flagella synchronization is investigated by triggering phase locking between a controlled external flow and the flagella of C. reinhardtii. Hydrodynamic forces required for synchronization are over an order of magnitude larger than hydrodynamic forces experienced in physiological conditions. Our results suggest that synchronization is due instead to coupling through cell internal fibers connecting the flagella. This conclusion is confirmed by observations of the vfl3 mutant, with impaired mechanical connection between the flagella.

  12. Evolutionary distinctiveness of fatty acid and polyketide synthesis in eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Kohli, Gurjeet S; John, Uwe; Van Dolah, Frances M; Murray, Shauna A

    2016-01-01

    Fatty acids, which are essential cell membrane constituents and fuel storage molecules, are thought to share a common evolutionary origin with polyketide toxins in eukaryotes. While fatty acids are primary metabolic products, polyketide toxins are secondary metabolites that are involved in ecologically relevant processes, such as chemical defence, and produce the adverse effects of harmful algal blooms. Selection pressures on such compounds may be different, resulting in differing evolutionary histories. Surprisingly, some studies of dinoflagellates have suggested that the same enzymes may catalyse these processes. Here we show the presence and evolutionary distinctiveness of genes encoding six key enzymes essential for fatty acid production in 13 eukaryotic lineages for which no previous sequence data were available (alveolates: dinoflagellates, Vitrella, Chromera; stramenopiles: bolidophytes, chrysophytes, pelagophytes, raphidophytes, dictyochophytes, pinguiophytes, xanthophytes; Rhizaria: chlorarachniophytes, haplosporida; euglenids) and 8 other lineages (apicomplexans, bacillariophytes, synurophytes, cryptophytes, haptophytes, chlorophyceans, prasinophytes, trebouxiophytes). The phylogeny of fatty acid synthase genes reflects the evolutionary history of the organism, indicating selection to maintain conserved functionality. In contrast, polyketide synthase gene families are highly expanded in dinoflagellates and haptophytes, suggesting relaxed constraints in their evolutionary history, while completely absent from some protist lineages. This demonstrates a vast potential for the production of bioactive polyketide compounds in some lineages of microbial eukaryotes, indicating that the evolution of these compounds may have played an important role in their ecological success. PMID:26784357

  13. Exaptive origins of regulated mRNA decay in eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Hamid, Fursham M.

    2016-01-01

    Eukaryotic gene expression is extensively controlled at the level of mRNA stability and the mechanisms underlying this regulation are markedly different from their archaeal and bacterial counterparts. We propose that two such mechanisms, nonsense‐mediated decay (NMD) and motif‐specific transcript destabilization by CCCH‐type zinc finger RNA‐binding proteins, originated as a part of cellular defense against RNA pathogens. These branches of the mRNA turnover pathway might have been used by primeval eukaryotes alongside RNA interference to distinguish their own messages from those of RNA viruses and retrotransposable elements. We further hypothesize that the subsequent advent of “professional” innate and adaptive immunity systems allowed NMD and the motif‐triggered mechanisms to be efficiently repurposed for regulation of endogenous cellular transcripts. This scenario explains the rapid emergence of archetypical mRNA destabilization pathways in eukaryotes and argues that other aspects of post‐transcriptional gene regulation in this lineage might have been derived through a similar exaptation route. PMID:27438915

  14. Ubiquitination dynamics in the early-branching eukaryote Giardia intestinalis

    PubMed Central

    Niño, Carlos A; Chaparro, Jenny; Soffientini, Paolo; Polo, Simona; Wasserman, Moises

    2013-01-01

    Ubiquitination is a highly dynamic and versatile posttranslational modification that regulates protein function, stability, and interactions. To investigate the roles of ubiquitination in a primitive eukaryotic lineage, we utilized the early-branching eukaryote Giardia intestinalis. Using a combination of biochemical, immunofluorescence-based, and proteomics approaches, we assessed the ubiquitination status during the process of differentiation in Giardia. We observed that different types of ubiquitin modifications present specific cellular and temporal distribution throughout the Giardia life cycle from trophozoites to cyst maturation. Ubiquitin signal was detected in the wall of mature cysts, and enzymes implicated in cyst wall biogenesis were identified as substrates for ubiquitination. Interestingly, inhibition of proteasome activity did not affect trophozoite replication and differentiation, while it caused a decrease in cyst viability, arguing for proteasome involvement in cyst wall maturation. Using a proteomics approach, we identified around 200 high-confidence ubiquitinated candidates that vary their ubiquitination status during differentiation. Our results indicate that ubiquitination is critical for several cellular processes in this primitive eukaryote. PMID:23613346

  15. The evolution of organellar metabolism in unicellular eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Ginger, Michael L; McFadden, Geoffrey I; Michels, Paul A M

    2010-03-12

    Metabolic innovation has facilitated the radiation of microbes into almost every niche environment on the Earth, and over geological time scales transformed the planet on which we live. A notable example of innovation is the evolution of oxygenic photosynthesis which was a prelude to the gradual transformation of an anoxic Earth into a world with oxygenated oceans and an oxygen-rich atmosphere capable of supporting complex multicellular organisms. The influence of microbial innovation on the Earth's history and the timing of pivotal events have been addressed in other recent themed editions of Philosophical Transactions of Royal Society B (Cavalier-Smith et al. 2006; Bendall et al. 2008). In this issue, our contributors provide a timely history of metabolic innovation and adaptation within unicellular eukaryotes. In eukaryotes, diverse metabolic portfolios are compartmentalized across multiple membrane-bounded compartments (or organelles). However, as a consequence of pathway retargeting, organelle degeneration or novel endosymbiotic associations, the metabolic repertoires of protists often differ extensively from classic textbook descriptions of intermediary metabolism. These differences are often important in the context of niche adaptation or the structure of microbial communities. Fundamentally interesting in its own right, the biochemical, cell biological and phylogenomic investigation of organellar metabolism also has wider relevance. For instance, in some pathogens, notably those causing some of the most significant tropical diseases, including malaria, unusual organellar metabolism provides important new drug targets. Moreover, the study of organellar metabolism in protists continues to provide critical insight into our understanding of eukaryotic evolution. PMID:20124338

  16. Eukaryotic penelope-like retroelements encode hammerhead ribozyme motifs.

    PubMed

    Cervera, Amelia; De la Peña, Marcos

    2014-11-01

    Small self-cleaving RNAs, such as the paradigmatic Hammerhead ribozyme (HHR), have been recently found widespread in DNA genomes across all kingdoms of life. In this work, we found that new HHR variants are preserved in the ancient family of Penelope-like elements (PLEs), a group of eukaryotic retrotransposons regarded as exceptional for encoding telomerase-like retrotranscriptases and spliceosomal introns. Our bioinformatic analysis revealed not only the presence of minimalist HHRs in the two flanking repeats of PLEs but also their massive and widespread occurrence in metazoan genomes. The architecture of these ribozymes indicates that they may work as dimers, although their low self-cleavage activity in vitro suggests the requirement of other factors in vivo. In plants, however, PLEs show canonical HHRs, whereas fungi and protist PLEs encode ribozyme variants with a stable active conformation as monomers. Overall, our data confirm the connection of self-cleaving RNAs with eukaryotic retroelements and unveil these motifs as a significant fraction of the encoded information in eukaryotic genomes. PMID:25135949

  17. Evolutionary distinctiveness of fatty acid and polyketide synthesis in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Kohli, Gurjeet S; John, Uwe; Van Dolah, Frances M; Murray, Shauna A

    2016-08-01

    Fatty acids, which are essential cell membrane constituents and fuel storage molecules, are thought to share a common evolutionary origin with polyketide toxins in eukaryotes. While fatty acids are primary metabolic products, polyketide toxins are secondary metabolites that are involved in ecologically relevant processes, such as chemical defence, and produce the adverse effects of harmful algal blooms. Selection pressures on such compounds may be different, resulting in differing evolutionary histories. Surprisingly, some studies of dinoflagellates have suggested that the same enzymes may catalyse these processes. Here we show the presence and evolutionary distinctiveness of genes encoding six key enzymes essential for fatty acid production in 13 eukaryotic lineages for which no previous sequence data were available (alveolates: dinoflagellates, Vitrella, Chromera; stramenopiles: bolidophytes, chrysophytes, pelagophytes, raphidophytes, dictyochophytes, pinguiophytes, xanthophytes; Rhizaria: chlorarachniophytes, haplosporida; euglenids) and 8 other lineages (apicomplexans, bacillariophytes, synurophytes, cryptophytes, haptophytes, chlorophyceans, prasinophytes, trebouxiophytes). The phylogeny of fatty acid synthase genes reflects the evolutionary history of the organism, indicating selection to maintain conserved functionality. In contrast, polyketide synthase gene families are highly expanded in dinoflagellates and haptophytes, suggesting relaxed constraints in their evolutionary history, while completely absent from some protist lineages. This demonstrates a vast potential for the production of bioactive polyketide compounds in some lineages of microbial eukaryotes, indicating that the evolution of these compounds may have played an important role in their ecological success. PMID:26784357

  18. Eukaryotic Penelope-Like Retroelements Encode Hammerhead Ribozyme Motifs

    PubMed Central

    Cervera, Amelia; De la Peña, Marcos

    2014-01-01

    Small self-cleaving RNAs, such as the paradigmatic Hammerhead ribozyme (HHR), have been recently found widespread in DNA genomes across all kingdoms of life. In this work, we found that new HHR variants are preserved in the ancient family of Penelope-like elements (PLEs), a group of eukaryotic retrotransposons regarded as exceptional for encoding telomerase-like retrotranscriptases and spliceosomal introns. Our bioinformatic analysis revealed not only the presence of minimalist HHRs in the two flanking repeats of PLEs but also their massive and widespread occurrence in metazoan genomes. The architecture of these ribozymes indicates that they may work as dimers, although their low self-cleavage activity in vitro suggests the requirement of other factors in vivo. In plants, however, PLEs show canonical HHRs, whereas fungi and protist PLEs encode ribozyme variants with a stable active conformation as monomers. Overall, our data confirm the connection of self-cleaving RNAs with eukaryotic retroelements and unveil these motifs as a significant fraction of the encoded information in eukaryotic genomes. PMID:25135949

  19. Translational Control of Viral Gene Expression in Eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Gale, Michael; Tan, Seng-Lai; Katze, Michael G.

    2000-01-01

    As obligate intracellular parasites, viruses rely exclusively on the translational machinery of the host cell for the synthesis of viral proteins. This relationship has imposed numerous challenges on both the infecting virus and the host cell. Importantly, viruses must compete with the endogenous transcripts of the host cell for the translation of viral mRNA. Eukaryotic viruses have thus evolved diverse mechanisms to ensure translational efficiency of viral mRNA above and beyond that of cellular mRNA. Mechanisms that facilitate the efficient and selective translation of viral mRNA may be inherent in the structure of the viral nucleic acid itself and can involve the recruitment and/or modification of specific host factors. These processes serve to redirect the translation apparatus to favor viral transcripts, and they often come at the expense of the host cell. Accordingly, eukaryotic cells have developed antiviral countermeasures to target the translational machinery and disrupt protein synthesis during the course of virus infection. Not to be outdone, many viruses have answered these countermeasures with their own mechanisms to disrupt cellular antiviral pathways, thereby ensuring the uncompromised translation of virion proteins. Here we review the varied and complex translational programs employed by eukaryotic viruses. We discuss how these translational strategies have been incorporated into the virus life cycle and examine how such programming contributes to the pathogenesis of the host cell. PMID:10839817

  20. The evolutionary dynamics of transposable elements in eukaryote genomes.

    PubMed

    Tollis, M; Boissinot, S

    2012-01-01

    Transposable elements (TEs) are ubiquitous components of eukaryotic genomes. They have considerably affected their size, structure and function. The sequencing of a multitude of eukaryote genomes has revealed some striking differences in the abundance and diversity of TEs among eukaryotes. Protists, plants, insects and vertebrates contain species with large numbers of TEs and species with small numbers, as well as species with diverse repertoires of TEs and species with a limited diversity of TEs. There is no apparent relationship between the complexity of organisms and their TE profile. The profile of TE diversity and abundance results from the interaction between the rate of transposition, the intensity of selection against new inserts, the demographic history of populations and the rate of DNA loss. Recent population genetics studies suggest that selection against new insertions, mostly caused by the ability of TEs to mediate ectopic recombination events, is limiting the fixation of TEs, but that reduction in effective population size, caused by population bottlenecks or inbreeding, significantly reduces the efficacy of selection. These results emphasize the importance of drift in shaping genomic architecture.

  1. The evolution of organellar metabolism in unicellular eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Ginger, Michael L; McFadden, Geoffrey I; Michels, Paul A M

    2010-03-12

    Metabolic innovation has facilitated the radiation of microbes into almost every niche environment on the Earth, and over geological time scales transformed the planet on which we live. A notable example of innovation is the evolution of oxygenic photosynthesis which was a prelude to the gradual transformation of an anoxic Earth into a world with oxygenated oceans and an oxygen-rich atmosphere capable of supporting complex multicellular organisms. The influence of microbial innovation on the Earth's history and the timing of pivotal events have been addressed in other recent themed editions of Philosophical Transactions of Royal Society B (Cavalier-Smith et al. 2006; Bendall et al. 2008). In this issue, our contributors provide a timely history of metabolic innovation and adaptation within unicellular eukaryotes. In eukaryotes, diverse metabolic portfolios are compartmentalized across multiple membrane-bounded compartments (or organelles). However, as a consequence of pathway retargeting, organelle degeneration or novel endosymbiotic associations, the metabolic repertoires of protists often differ extensively from classic textbook descriptions of intermediary metabolism. These differences are often important in the context of niche adaptation or the structure of microbial communities. Fundamentally interesting in its own right, the biochemical, cell biological and phylogenomic investigation of organellar metabolism also has wider relevance. For instance, in some pathogens, notably those causing some of the most significant tropical diseases, including malaria, unusual organellar metabolism provides important new drug targets. Moreover, the study of organellar metabolism in protists continues to provide critical insight into our understanding of eukaryotic evolution.

  2. Biotransformation of arsenic by a Yellowstone thermoacidophilic eukaryotic alga

    PubMed Central

    Qin, Jie; Lehr, Corinne R.; Yuan, Chungang; Le, X. Chris; McDermott, Timothy R.; Rosen, Barry P.

    2009-01-01

    Arsenic is the most common toxic substance in the environment, ranking first on the Superfund list of hazardous substances. It is introduced primarily from geochemical sources and is acted on biologically, creating an arsenic biogeocycle. Geothermal environments are known for their elevated arsenic content and thus provide an excellent setting in which to study microbial redox transformations of arsenic. To date, most studies of microbial communities in geothermal environments have focused on Bacteria and Archaea, with little attention to eukaryotic microorganisms. Here, we show the potential of an extremophilic eukaryotic alga of the order Cyanidiales to influence arsenic cycling at elevated temperatures. Cyanidioschyzon sp. isolate 5508 oxidized arsenite [As(III)] to arsenate [As(V)], reduced As(V) to As(III), and methylated As(III) to form trimethylarsine oxide (TMAO) and dimethylarsenate [DMAs(V)]. Two arsenic methyltransferase genes, CmarsM7 and CmarsM8, were cloned from this organism and demonstrated to confer resistance to As(III) in an arsenite hypersensitive strain of Escherichia coli. The 2 recombinant CmArsMs were purified and shown to transform As(III) into monomethylarsenite, DMAs(V), TMAO, and trimethylarsine gas, with a Topt of 60–70 °C. These studies illustrate the importance of eukaryotic microorganisms to the biogeochemical cycling of arsenic in geothermal systems, offer a molecular explanation for how these algae tolerate arsenic in their environment, and provide the characterization of algal methyltransferases. PMID:19276121

  3. OrthoMCL: identification of ortholog groups for eukaryotic genomes.

    PubMed

    Li, Li; Stoeckert, Christian J; Roos, David S

    2003-09-01

    The identification of orthologous groups is useful for genome annotation, studies on gene/protein evolution, comparative genomics, and the identification of taxonomically restricted sequences. Methods successfully exploited for prokaryotic genome analysis have proved difficult to apply to eukaryotes, however, as larger genomes may contain multiple paralogous genes, and sequence information is often incomplete. OrthoMCL provides a scalable method for constructing orthologous groups across multiple eukaryotic taxa, using a Markov Cluster algorithm to group (putative) orthologs and paralogs. This method performs similarly to the INPARANOID algorithm when applied to two genomes, but can be extended to cluster orthologs from multiple species. OrthoMCL clusters are coherent with groups identified by EGO, but improved recognition of "recent" paralogs permits overlapping EGO groups representing the same gene to be merged. Comparison with previously assigned EC annotations suggests a high degree of reliability, implying utility for automated eukaryotic genome annotation. OrthoMCL has been applied to the proteome data set from seven publicly available genomes (human, fly, worm, yeast, Arabidopsis, the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum, and Escherichia coli). A Web interface allows queries based on individual genes or user-defined phylogenetic patterns (http://www.cbil.upenn.edu/gene-family). Analysis of clusters incorporating P. falciparum genes identifies numerous enzymes that were incompletely annotated in first-pass annotation of the parasite genome.

  4. A Metastate HMM with Application to Gene Structure Identification in Eukaryotes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winters-Hilt, Stephen; Baribault, Carl

    2010-12-01

    We introduce a generalized-clique hidden Markov model (HMM) and apply it to gene finding in eukaryotes ( C. elegans). We demonstrate a HMM structure identification platform that is novel and robustly-performing in a number of ways. The generalized clique HMM begins by enlarging the primitive hidden states associated with the individual base labels (as exon, intron, or junk) to substrings of primitive hidden states, or footprint states, having a minimal length greater than the footprint state length. The emissions are likewise expanded to higher order in the fundamental joint probability that is the basis of the generalized-clique, or "metastate", HMM. We then consider application to eukaryotic gene finding and show how such a metastate HMM improves the strength of coding/noncoding-transition contributions to gene-structure identification. We will describe situations where the coding/noncoding-transition modeling can effectively recapture the exon and intron heavy tail distribution modeling capability as well as manage the exon-start needle-in-the-haystack problem. In analysis of the C. elegans genome we show that the sensitivity and specificity (SN,SP) results for both the individual-state and full-exon predictions are greatly enhanced over the standard HMM when using the generalized-clique HMM.

  5. Functional reconstitution of human eukaryotic translation initiation factor 3 (eIF3).

    PubMed

    Sun, Chaomin; Todorovic, Aleksandar; Querol-Audí, Jordi; Bai, Yun; Villa, Nancy; Snyder, Monica; Ashchyan, John; Lewis, Christopher S; Hartland, Abbey; Gradia, Scott; Fraser, Christopher S; Doudna, Jennifer A; Nogales, Eva; Cate, Jamie H D

    2011-12-20

    Protein fate in higher eukaryotes is controlled by three complexes that share conserved architectural elements: the proteasome, COP9 signalosome, and eukaryotic translation initiation factor 3 (eIF3). Here we reconstitute the 13-subunit human eIF3 in Escherichia coli, revealing its structural core to be the eight subunits with conserved orthologues in the proteasome lid complex and COP9 signalosome. This structural core in eIF3 binds to the small (40S) ribosomal subunit, to translation initiation factors involved in mRNA cap-dependent initiation, and to the hepatitis C viral (HCV) internal ribosome entry site (IRES) RNA. Addition of the remaining eIF3 subunits enables reconstituted eIF3 to assemble intact initiation complexes with the HCV IRES. Negative-stain EM reconstructions of reconstituted eIF3 further reveal how the approximately 400 kDa molecular mass structural core organizes the highly flexible 800 kDa molecular mass eIF3 complex, and mediates translation initiation.

  6. Resilience of Freshwater Communities of Small Microbial Eukaryotes Undergoing Severe Drought Events.

    PubMed

    Simon, Marianne; López-García, Purificación; Deschamps, Philippe; Restoux, Gwendal; Bertolino, Paola; Moreira, David; Jardillier, Ludwig

    2016-01-01

    Small and shallow aquatic ecosystems such as ponds and streams constitute a significant proportion of continental surface waters, especially in temperate zones. In comparison with bigger lakes and rivers, they harbor higher biodiversity but they also exhibit reduced buffering capacity face to environmental shifts, such that climate global change can affect them in a more drastic way. For instance, many temperate areas are predicted to undergo droughts with increasing frequency in the near future, which may lead to the temporal desiccation of streams and ponds. In this work, we monitored temporal dynamics of planktonic communities of microbial eukaryotes (cell size range: 0.2-5 μm) in one brook and one pond that experienced recurrent droughts from 1 to 5 consecutive months during a temporal survey carried out monthly for 2 years based on high-throughput 18S rDNA metabarcoding. During drought-induced desiccation events, protist communities present in the remaining dry sediment, though highly diverse, differed radically from their planktonic counterparts. However, after water refill, the aquatic protist assemblages recovered their original structure within a month. This rapid recovery indicates that these eukaryotic communities are resilient to droughts, most likely via the entrance in dormancy. This property is essential for the long-term survival and functional stability of small freshwater ecosystems. PMID:27303393

  7. Triacylglycerols of the red microalga Porphyridium cruentum can contribute to the biosynthesis of eukaryotic galactolipids.

    PubMed

    Khozin-Goldberg, I; Yu, H Z; Adlerstein, D; Didi-Cohen, S; Heimer, Y M; Cohen, Z

    2000-08-01

    A mutant of the red microalga Porphyridium cruentum was selected on the basis of impaired growth at suboptimal temperatures (15 vs. 25 degrees C). Fatty acid and lipid analyses revealed diminished proportions of eicosapentaenoic acid (from 41 to 30%) and of the eukaryotic molecular species (from 38 to 28% of monogalactosyldiacylglycerol (MGDG) and elevated proportion (10 vs. 2%) of triacylglycerols (TAG) in the mutant, as compared with the wild type. Pulse labeling of the wild type cells with radioactive fatty acid precursors indicated an initial incorporation of the fatty acids into phosphatidylcholine (PC) and TAG. Following the pulse, the label of PC and TAG decreased with time (from 25 to 5% of the total dpm in TAG) while that of chloroplastic polar lipids, mainly MGDG, continued to increase. In the mutant, however, the labeling of TAG after the pulse was higher (30% of the total dpm) than that of the wild type and decreased only slightly to 20%. This may indicate that in P. cruentum, TAG can contribute to the biosynthesis of eukaryotic species of MGDG.

  8. Telomere-centric genome repatterning determines recurring chromosome number reductions during the evolution of eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xiyin; Jin, Dianchuan; Wang, Zhenyi; Guo, Hui; Zhang, Lan; Wang, Li; Li, Jingping; Paterson, Andrew H

    2015-01-01

    Whole-genome duplication (WGD) is central to the evolution of many eukaryotic genomes, in particular rendering angiosperm (flowering plant) genomes much less stable than those of animals. Following repeated duplication/triplication(s), angiosperm chromosome numbers have usually been restored to a narrow range, as one element in a 'diploidization' process that re-establishes diploid heredity. In several angiosperms affected by WGD, we show that chromosome number reduction (CNR) is best explained by intra- and/or inter-chromosomal crossovers to form new chromosomes that utilize the existing telomeres of 'invaded' and centromeres of 'invading' chromosomes, the alternative centromeres and telomeres being lost. Comparison with the banana (Musa acuminata) genome supports a 'fusion model' for the evolution of rice (Oryza sativa) chromosomes 2 and 3, implying that the grass common ancestor had seven chromosomes rather than the five implied by a 'fission model.' The 'invading' and 'invaded' chromosomes are frequently homoeologs, originating from duplication of a common ancestral chromosome and with greater-than-average DNA-level correspondence to one another. Telomere-centric CNR following recursive WGD in plants is also important in mammals and yeast, and may be a general mechanism of restoring small linear chromosome numbers in higher eukaryotes.

  9. The vacuolar H+-ATPase: a universal proton pump of eukaryotes.

    PubMed Central

    Finbow, M E; Harrison, M A

    1997-01-01

    The vacuolar H+-ATPase (V-ATPase) is a universal component of eukaryotic organisms. It is present in the membranes of many organelles, where its proton-pumping action creates the low intra-vacuolar pH found, for example, in lysosomes. In addition, there are a number of differentiated cell types that have V-ATPases on their surface that contribute to the physiological functions of these cells. The V-ATPase is a multi-subunit enzyme composed of a membrane sector and a cytosolic catalytic sector. It is related to the familiar FoF1 ATP synthase (F-ATPase), having the same basic architectural construction, and many of the subunits from the two display identity with one another. All the core subunits of the V-ATPase have now been identified and much is known about the assembly, regulation and pharmacology of the enzyme. Recent genetic analysis has shown the V-ATPase to be a vital component of higher eukaryotes. At least one of the subunits, i.e. subunit c (ductin), may have multifunctional roles in membrane transport, providing a possible pathway of communication between cells. The structure of the membrane sector is known in some detail, and it is possible to begin to suggest how proton pumping is coupled to ATP hydrolysis. PMID:9210392

  10. A rhodopsin is the functional photoreceptor for phototaxis in the unicellular eukaryote Chlamydomonas.

    PubMed

    Foster, K W; Saranak, J; Patel, N; Zarilli, G; Okabe, M; Kline, T; Nakanishi, K

    Rhodopsin is a visual pigment ubiquitous in multicellular animals. If visual pigments have a common ancient origin, as is believed, then some unicellular organisms might also use a rhodopsin photoreceptor. We show here that the unicellular alga Chlamydomonas does indeed use a rhodopsin photoreceptor. We incorporated analogues of its retinal chromophore into a blind mutant; normal photobehaviour was restored and the colour of maximum sensitivity was shifted in a manner consistent with the nature of the retinal analogue added. The data suggest that 11-cis-retinal is the natural chromophore and that the protein environment of this retinal is similar to that found in bovine rhodopsin, suggesting homology with the rhodopsins of higher organisms. This is the first demonstration of a rhodopsin photoreceptor in an alga or eukaryotic protist and also the first report of behavioural spectral shifts caused by exogenous synthetic retinals in a eukaryote. A survey of the morphology and action spectra of other protists suggests that rhodopsins may be common photoreceptors of chlorophycean, prasinophycean and dinophycean algae. Thus, Chlamydomonas represents a useful new model for studying photoreceptor cells.

  11. Mussel biofiltration effects on attached bacteria and unicellular eukaryotes in fish-rearing seawater

    PubMed Central

    Voudanta, Eleni; Monchy, Sebastién; Delegrange, Alice; Vincent, Dorothée; Genitsaris, Savvas; Christaki, Urania

    2016-01-01

    Mussel biofiltration is a widely used approach for the mitigation of aquaculture water. In this study, we investigated the effect of mussel biofiltration on the communities of particle-associated bacteria and unicellular eukaryotes in a sea bass aquaculture in southern North Sea. We assessed the planktonic community changes before and after biofiltration based on the diversity of the 16S and 18S rRNA genes by using next generation sequencing technologies. Although there was no overall reduction in the operational taxonomic units (OTU) numbers between the control (no mussels) and the test (with mussels) tanks, a clear reduction in the relative abundance of the top three most dominant OTUs in every sampling time was observed, ranging between 2–28% and 16–82% for Bacteria and Eukarya, respectively. The bacterial community was dominated by OTUs related to phytoplankton blooms and/or high concentrations of detritus. Among the eukaryotes, several fungal and parasitic groups were found. Their relative abundance in most cases was also reduced from the control to the test tanks; a similar decreasing pattern was also observed for both major higher taxa and functional (trophic) groups. Overall, this study showed the effectiveness of mussel biofiltration on the decrease of microbiota abundance and diversity in seawater fueling fish farms. PMID:27069786

  12. Effects of saponins against clinical E. coli strains and eukaryotic cell line.

    PubMed

    Arabski, Michał; Węgierek-Ciuk, Aneta; Czerwonka, Grzegorz; Lankoff, Anna; Kaca, Wiesław

    2012-01-01

    Saponins are detergent-like substances showing antibacterial as well as anticancer potential. In this study, the effects of saponins from Quillaja saponaria were analyzed against prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells. Multidrug-resistant clinical E. coli strains were isolated from human urine. As eukaryotic cells, the CHO-K1 cell lines were applied. Antibacterial effect of ampicillin, streptomycin, and ciprofloxacin in the presence of saponins was measured by cultivation methods. Properties of saponins against CHO-K1 cells were measured by the MTT test, hemolysis assay and flow cytometry. Saponin from Quillaja saponaria has a cytotoxic effect at concentrations higher than 25 μg/mL and in the range of 12-50 μg/mL significantly increases the level of early apoptotic cells. Saponin at dose of 12 μg/mL enhances the six E. coli strains growth. We postulate that saponins increase the influx of nutrients from the medium into E. coli cells. Saponins do not have synergetic effects on antibacterial action of tested antibiotics. In contrary, in the presence of saponins and antibiotics, more CFU/mL E. coli cells were observed. This effect was similar to saponins action alone towards E. coli cells. In conclusion, saponins was cytotoxic against CHO-K1 cells, whereas against E. coli cells this effect was not observed. PMID:22500084

  13. Characterization of eukaryotic DNA N(6)-methyladenine by a highly sensitive restriction enzyme-assisted sequencing.

    PubMed

    Luo, Guan-Zheng; Wang, Fang; Weng, Xiaocheng; Chen, Kai; Hao, Ziyang; Yu, Miao; Deng, Xin; Liu, Jianzhao; He, Chuan

    2016-01-01

    Although extensively studied in prokaryotes, the prevalence and significance of DNA N(6)-methyladenine (6mA or m(6)dA) in eukaryotes had been underappreciated until recent studies, which have demonstrated that 6mA regulates gene expression as a potential heritable mark. To interrogate 6mA sites at single-base resolution, we report DA-6mA-seq (DpnI-Assisted N(6)-methylAdenine sequencing), an approach that uses DpnI to cleave methylated adenine sites in duplex DNA. We find that DpnI cuts other sequence motifs besides the canonical GATC restriction sites, thereby expanding the utility of this method. DA-6mA-seq achieves higher sensitivity with nanograms of input DNA and lower sequencing depth than conventional approaches. We study 6mA at base resolution in the Chlamydomonas genome and apply the new method to two other eukaryotic organisms, Plasmodium and Penicillium. Combined with conventional approaches, our method further shows that most 6mA sites are fully methylated on both strands of DNA at various sequence contexts.

  14. Resilience of Freshwater Communities of Small Microbial Eukaryotes Undergoing Severe Drought Events

    PubMed Central

    Simon, Marianne; López-García, Purificación; Deschamps, Philippe; Restoux, Gwendal; Bertolino, Paola; Moreira, David; Jardillier, Ludwig

    2016-01-01

    Small and shallow aquatic ecosystems such as ponds and streams constitute a significant proportion of continental surface waters, especially in temperate zones. In comparison with bigger lakes and rivers, they harbor higher biodiversity but they also exhibit reduced buffering capacity face to environmental shifts, such that climate global change can affect them in a more drastic way. For instance, many temperate areas are predicted to undergo droughts with increasing frequency in the near future, which may lead to the temporal desiccation of streams and ponds. In this work, we monitored temporal dynamics of planktonic communities of microbial eukaryotes (cell size range: 0.2–5 μm) in one brook and one pond that experienced recurrent droughts from 1 to 5 consecutive months during a temporal survey carried out monthly for 2 years based on high-throughput 18S rDNA metabarcoding. During drought-induced desiccation events, protist communities present in the remaining dry sediment, though highly diverse, differed radically from their planktonic counterparts. However, after water refill, the aquatic protist assemblages recovered their original structure within a month. This rapid recovery indicates that these eukaryotic communities are resilient to droughts, most likely via the entrance in dormancy. This property is essential for the long-term survival and functional stability of small freshwater ecosystems. PMID:27303393

  15. Characterization of eukaryotic DNA N6-methyladenine by a highly sensitive restriction enzyme-assisted sequencing

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Guan-Zheng; Wang, Fang; Weng, Xiaocheng; Chen, Kai; Hao, Ziyang; Yu, Miao; Deng, Xin; Liu, Jianzhao; He, Chuan

    2016-01-01

    Although extensively studied in prokaryotes, the prevalence and significance of DNA N6-methyladenine (6mA or m6dA) in eukaryotes had been underappreciated until recent studies, which have demonstrated that 6mA regulates gene expression as a potential heritable mark. To interrogate 6mA sites at single-base resolution, we report DA-6mA-seq (DpnI-Assisted N6-methylAdenine sequencing), an approach that uses DpnI to cleave methylated adenine sites in duplex DNA. We find that DpnI cuts other sequence motifs besides the canonical GATC restriction sites, thereby expanding the utility of this method. DA-6mA-seq achieves higher sensitivity with nanograms of input DNA and lower sequencing depth than conventional approaches. We study 6mA at base resolution in the Chlamydomonas genome and apply the new method to two other eukaryotic organisms, Plasmodium and Penicillium. Combined with conventional approaches, our method further shows that most 6mA sites are fully methylated on both strands of DNA at various sequence contexts. PMID:27079427

  16. Diversity of preferred nucleotide sequences around the translation initiation codon in eukaryote genomes.

    PubMed

    Nakagawa, So; Niimura, Yoshihito; Gojobori, Takashi; Tanaka, Hiroshi; Miura, Kin-ichiro

    2008-02-01

    Understanding regulatory mechanisms of protein synthesis in eukaryotes is essential for the accurate annotation of genome sequences. Kozak reported that the nucleotide sequence GCCGCC(A/G)CCAUGG (AUG is the initiation codon) was frequently observed in vertebrate genes and that this 'consensus' sequence enhanced translation initiation. However, later studies using invertebrate, fungal and plant genes reported different 'consensus' sequences. In this study, we conducted extensive comparative analyses of nucleotide sequences around the initiation codon by using genomic data from 47 eukaryote species including animals, fungi, plants and protists. The analyses revealed that preferred nucleotide sequences are quite diverse among different species, but differences between patterns of nucleotide bias roughly reflect the evolutionary relationships of the species. We also found strong biases of A/G at position -3, A/C at position -2 and C at position +5 that were commonly observed in all species examined. Genes with higher expression levels showed stronger signals, suggesting that these nucleotides are responsible for the regulation of translation initiation. The diversity of preferred nucleotide sequences around the initiation codon might be explained by differences in relative contributions from two distinct patterns, GCCGCCAUG and AAAAAAAUG, which implies the presence of multiple molecular mechanisms for controlling translation initiation.

  17. Molecular analysis of geographic patterns of eukaryotic diversity in Antarctic soils.

    PubMed

    Lawley, Blair; Ripley, Sarah; Bridge, Paul; Convey, Peter

    2004-10-01

    We describe the application of molecular biological techniques to estimate eukaryotic diversity (primarily fungi, algae, and protists) in Antarctic soils across a latitudinal and environmental gradient between approximately 60 and 87 degrees S. The data were used to (i) test the hypothesis that diversity would decrease with increasing southerly latitude and environmental severity, as is generally claimed for "higher" faunal and plant groups, and (ii) investigate the level of endemicity displayed in different taxonomic groups. Only limited support was obtained for a systematic decrease in diversity with latitude, and then only at the level of a gross comparison between maritime (Antarctic Peninsula/Scotia Arc) and continental Antarctic sites. While the most southerly continental Antarctic site was three to four times less diverse than all maritime sites, there was no evidence for a trend of decreasing diversity across the entire range of the maritime Antarctic (60 to 72 degrees S). Rather, we found the reverse pattern, with highest diversity at sites on Alexander Island (ca. 72 degrees S), at the southern limit of the maritime Antarctic. The very limited overlap found between the eukaryotic biota of the different study sites, combined with their generally low relatedness to existing sequence databases, indicates a high level of Antarctic site isolation and possibly endemicity, a pattern not consistent with similar studies on other continents.

  18. Mussel biofiltration effects on attached bacteria and unicellular eukaryotes in fish-rearing seawater.

    PubMed

    Voudanta, Eleni; Kormas, Konstantinos Ar; Monchy, Sebastién; Delegrange, Alice; Vincent, Dorothée; Genitsaris, Savvas; Christaki, Urania

    2016-01-01

    Mussel biofiltration is a widely used approach for the mitigation of aquaculture water. In this study, we investigated the effect of mussel biofiltration on the communities of particle-associated bacteria and unicellular eukaryotes in a sea bass aquaculture in southern North Sea. We assessed the planktonic community changes before and after biofiltration based on the diversity of the 16S and 18S rRNA genes by using next generation sequencing technologies. Although there was no overall reduction in the operational taxonomic units (OTU) numbers between the control (no mussels) and the test (with mussels) tanks, a clear reduction in the relative abundance of the top three most dominant OTUs in every sampling time was observed, ranging between 2-28% and 16-82% for Bacteria and Eukarya, respectively. The bacterial community was dominated by OTUs related to phytoplankton blooms and/or high concentrations of detritus. Among the eukaryotes, several fungal and parasitic groups were found. Their relative abundance in most cases was also reduced from the control to the test tanks; a similar decreasing pattern was also observed for both major higher taxa and functional (trophic) groups. Overall, this study showed the effectiveness of mussel biofiltration on the decrease of microbiota abundance and diversity in seawater fueling fish farms. PMID:27069786

  19. Horizontal DNA transfer from bacteria to eukaryotes and a lesson from experimental transfers.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Katsunori; Moriguchi, Kazuki; Yamamoto, Shinji

    2015-12-01

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is widespread among bacteria and plays a key role in genome dynamics. HGT is much less common in eukaryotes, but is being reported with increasing frequency in eukaryotes. The mechanism as to how eukaryotes acquired genes from distantly related organisms remains obscure yet. This paper cites examples of bacteria-derived genes found in eukaryotic organisms, and then describes experimental DNA transports to eukaryotes by bacterial type 4 secretion systems in optimized conditions. The mechanisms of the latter are efficient, quite reproducible in vitro and predictable, and thereby would provide insight into natural HGT and to the development of new research tools.

  20. Molecular and phylogenetic analysis of PCR-amplified cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK) family sequences from representatives of the earliest available lineages of eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Riley, D E; Krieger, J N

    1995-10-01

    Cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK) and cell division control (CDC2) sequences are strongly conserved among eukaryotes and may complement the use of other sequence families in eukaryotic phylogenetic inference. We synthesized degenerate PCR primers to amplify the catalytic region of CDK homologs in representatives of the earliest available lineages of eukaryotes. CDK family sequence-based, maximum-likelihood distance measurements with neighbor-joining, and Fitch-Margoliash least-squares analyses produced unrooted dendrograms that included protists, yeasts, and higher eukaryotes. Bootstrap confidence estimates supported CDK-based phylogenetic groupings among the protists, fungi, and vertebrates although resolution within these groups was often insignificant. However, Trichomonas vaginalis and Giardia lamblia exhibited two of the most divergent CDK-like sequences consistent with rRNA-phylogenetic inference of early divergence of these eukaryotic lineages. In the evolution from unicellular to multicellular organisms, a constellation of amino acid residues aligning with the human, CDK N-terminal beta sheet may have undergone abrupt replacement.

  1. Origin and evolution of the self-organizing cytoskeleton in the network of eukaryotic organelles.

    PubMed

    Jékely, Gáspár

    2014-09-02

    The eukaryotic cytoskeleton evolved from prokaryotic cytomotive filaments. Prokaryotic filament systems show bewildering structural and dynamic complexity and, in many aspects, prefigure the self-organizing properties of the eukaryotic cytoskeleton. Here, the dynamic properties of the prokaryotic and eukaryotic cytoskeleton are compared, and how these relate to function and evolution of organellar networks is discussed. The evolution of new aspects of filament dynamics in eukaryotes, including severing and branching, and the advent of molecular motors converted the eukaryotic cytoskeleton into a self-organizing "active gel," the dynamics of which can only be described with computational models. Advances in modeling and comparative genomics hold promise of a better understanding of the evolution of the self-organizing cytoskeleton in early eukaryotes, and its role in the evolution of novel eukaryotic functions, such as amoeboid motility, mitosis, and ciliary swimming.

  2. Eukaryote-specific extensions in ribosomal proteins of the small subunit: Structure and function.

    PubMed

    Ghosh, Arnab; Komar, Anton A

    2015-01-01

    High-resolution structures of yeast ribosomes have improved our understanding of the architecture and organization of eukaryotic rRNA and proteins, as well as eukaryote-specific extensions present in some conserved ribosomal proteins. Despite this progress, assignment of specific functions to individual proteins and/or eukaryote-specific protein extensions remains challenging. It has been suggested that eukaryote-specific extensions of conserved proteins from the small ribosomal subunit may facilitate eukaryote-specific reactions in the initiation phase of protein synthesis. This review summarizes emerging data describing the structural and functional significance of eukaryote-specific extensions of conserved small ribosomal subunit proteins, particularly their possible roles in recruitment and spatial organization of eukaryote-specific initiation factors. PMID:26779416

  3. Origin and Evolution of the Self-Organizing Cytoskeleton in the Network of Eukaryotic Organelles

    PubMed Central

    Jékely, Gáspár

    2014-01-01

    The eukaryotic cytoskeleton evolved from prokaryotic cytomotive filaments. Prokaryotic filament systems show bewildering structural and dynamic complexity and, in many aspects, prefigure the self-organizing properties of the eukaryotic cytoskeleton. Here, the dynamic properties of the prokaryotic and eukaryotic cytoskeleton are compared, and how these relate to function and evolution of organellar networks is discussed. The evolution of new aspects of filament dynamics in eukaryotes, including severing and branching, and the advent of molecular motors converted the eukaryotic cytoskeleton into a self-organizing “active gel,” the dynamics of which can only be described with computational models. Advances in modeling and comparative genomics hold promise of a better understanding of the evolution of the self-organizing cytoskeleton in early eukaryotes, and its role in the evolution of novel eukaryotic functions, such as amoeboid motility, mitosis, and ciliary swimming. PMID:25183829

  4. Whence genes in pieces: reconstruction of the exon-intron gene structures of the last eukaryotic common ancestor and other ancestral eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Koonin, Eugene V; Csuros, Miklos; Rogozin, Igor B

    2013-01-01

    In eukaryotes, protein-coding sequences are interrupted by non-coding sequences known as introns. During mRNA maturation, introns are excised by the spliceosome and the coding regions, exons, are spliced to form the mature coding region. The intron densities widely differ between eukaryotic lineages, from 6 to 7 introns per kb of coding sequence in vertebrates, some invertebrates and green plants, to only a few introns across the entire genome in many unicellular eukaryotes. Evolutionary reconstructions using maximum likelihood methods suggest intron-rich ancestors for each major group of eukaryotes. For the last common ancestor of animals, the highest intron density of all extant and extinct eukaryotes was inferred, at 120-130% of the human intron density. Furthermore, an intron density within 53-74% of the human values was inferred for the last eukaryotic common ancestor. Accordingly, evolution of eukaryotic genes in all lines of descent involved primarily intron loss, with substantial gain only at the bases of several branches including plants and animals. These conclusions have substantial biological implications indicating that the common ancestor of all modern eukaryotes was a complex organism with a gene architecture resembling those in multicellular organisms. Alternative splicing most likely initially appeared as an inevitable result of splicing errors and only later was employed to generate structural and functional diversification of proteins.

  5. Etude du mecanisme de predissociation de l'ion moleculaire de protoxyde d'azote par la mesure de l'energie cinetique des fragments de l'oxyde nitrique et de l'oxygene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Delisle, Claude

    La reaction N2 + O+ ↔ NO + + N, laquelle joue un role important dans la physique de la haute atmosphere, a ete le sujet de plusieurs etudes. Bien que cette reaction ait ete l'objet d'une quantite importante de travaux, ces derniers ne permettent toutefois pas de comprendre entierement le mecanisme d'un point de vue quantique, particulierement les niveaux d'energie excites des fragments qui permettent cette reaction. Puisque cette reaction n'est pas tres facile a reproduire en laboratoire, nous avons utilise la spectroscopie laser sur faisceaux d'ions rapides afin d'explorer les limites de dissociation de l'ion moleculaire intermediaire de cette reaction, a savoir l'ion N2O+. Le faisceau d'ions N2O+ rapides, apres excitation de l'ion moleculaire vers un niveau predissocie de l'etat A2Sigma+, se dissocie pour produire les fragments ioniques O+ et NO+. Par la mesure de la variation du nombre de fragments ioniques en fonction de l'energie cinetique des ions N2O+, nous avons enregistre les spectres de predissociation de l'ion N2O+. Lorsque c'etait possible, nous avons procede a l'analyse de ces spectres de dissociation afin d'en tirer les constantes moleculaires. Pour certaines des transitions rotationnelles intenses, nous avons mesure l'energie cinetique acquise par les fragments lors de la predissociation de l'ion N 2O+. Afin d'analyser les distributions en energie cinetique, nous avons developpe une simulation de l'experience en considerant, entre autres choses, la position des niveaux de vibration et de rotation des fragments diatomiques de chacune des limites de dissociation de N2O+. Les resultats de l'analyse sont exprimes en termes de population des niveaux de vibration des fragments diatomiques pour une distribution donnee de la population des niveaux de rotation des fragments. Les resultats ainsi obtenus, montrent que les fragments diatomiques sont produits dans des niveaux de vibration fortement excites. De tels niveaux d'excitation ne correspondent pas aux

  6. Targeted metagenomics and ecology of globally important uncultured eukaryotic phytoplankton

    PubMed Central

    Cuvelier, Marie L.; Allen, Andrew E.; Monier, Adam; McCrow, John P.; Messié, Monique; Tringe, Susannah G.; Woyke, Tanja; Welsh, Rory M.; Ishoey, Thomas; Lee, Jae-Hyeok; Binder, Brian J.; DuPont, Chris L.; Latasa, Mikel; Guigand, Cédric; Buck, Kurt R.; Hilton, Jason; Thiagarajan, Mathangi; Caler, Elisabet; Read, Betsy; Lasken, Roger S.; Chavez, Francisco P.; Worden, Alexandra Z.

    2010-01-01

    Among eukaryotes, four major phytoplankton lineages are responsible for marine photosynthesis; prymnesiophytes, alveolates, stramenopiles, and prasinophytes. Contributions by individual taxa, however, are not well known, and genomes have been analyzed from only the latter two lineages. Tiny “picoplanktonic” members of the prymnesiophyte lineage have long been inferred to be ecologically important but remain poorly characterized. Here, we examine pico-prymnesiophyte evolutionary history and ecology using cultivation-independent methods. 18S rRNA gene analysis showed pico-prymnesiophytes belonged to broadly distributed uncultivated taxa. Therefore, we used targeted metagenomics to analyze uncultured pico-prymnesiophytes sorted by flow cytometry from subtropical North Atlantic waters. The data reveal a composite nuclear-encoded gene repertoire with strong green-lineage affiliations, which contrasts with the evolutionary history indicated by the plastid genome. Measured pico-prymnesiophyte growth rates were rapid in this region, resulting in primary production contributions similar to the cyanobacterium Prochlorococcus. On average, pico-prymnesiophytes formed 25% of global picophytoplankton biomass, with differing contributions in five biogeographical provinces spanning tropical to subpolar systems. Elements likely contributing to success include high gene density and genes potentially involved in defense and nutrient uptake. Our findings have implications reaching beyond pico-prymnesiophytes, to the prasinophytes and stramenopiles. For example, prevalence of putative Ni-containing superoxide dismutases (SODs), instead of Fe-containing SODs, seems to be a common adaptation among eukaryotic phytoplankton for reducing Fe quotas in low-Fe modern oceans. Moreover, highly mosaic gene repertoires, although compositionally distinct for each major eukaryotic lineage, now seem to be an underlying facet of successful marine phytoplankton. PMID:20668244

  7. Reassessing the first appearance of eukaryotes and cyanobacteria.

    PubMed

    Rasmussen, Birger; Fletcher, Ian R; Brocks, Jochen J; Kilburn, Matt R

    2008-10-23

    The evolution of oxygenic photosynthesis had a profound impact on the Earth's surface chemistry, leading to a sharp rise in atmospheric oxygen between 2.45 and 2.32 billion years (Gyr) ago and the onset of extreme ice ages. The oldest widely accepted evidence for oxygenic photosynthesis has come from hydrocarbons extracted from approximately 2.7-Gyr-old shales in the Pilbara Craton, Australia, which contain traces of biomarkers (molecular fossils) indicative of eukaryotes and suggestive of oxygen-producing cyanobacteria. The soluble hydrocarbons were interpreted to be indigenous and syngenetic despite metamorphic alteration and extreme enrichment (10-20 per thousand) of (13)C relative to bulk sedimentary organic matter. Here we present micrometre-scale, in situ (13)C/(12)C measurements of pyrobitumen (thermally altered petroleum) and kerogen from these metamorphosed shales, including samples that originally yielded biomarkers. Our results show that both kerogen and pyrobitumen are strongly depleted in (13)C, indicating that indigenous petroleum is 10-20 per thousand lighter than the extracted hydrocarbons. These results are inconsistent with an indigenous origin for the biomarkers. Whatever their origin, the biomarkers must have entered the rock after peak metamorphism approximately 2.2 Gyr ago and thus do not provide evidence for the existence of eukaryotes and cyanobacteria in the Archaean eon. The oldest fossil evidence for eukaryotes and cyanobacteria therefore reverts to 1.78-1.68 Gyr ago and approximately 2.15 Gyr ago, respectively. Our results eliminate the evidence for oxygenic photosynthesis approximately 2.7 Gyr ago and exclude previous biomarker evidence for a long delay (approximately 300 million years) between the appearance of oxygen-producing cyanobacteria and the rise in atmospheric oxygen 2.45-2.32 Gyr ago. PMID:18948954

  8. The ultrastructure of Ancyromonas, a eukaryote without supergroup affinities.

    PubMed

    Heiss, Aaron A; Walker, Giselle; Simpson, Alastair G B

    2011-07-01

    The small heterotrophic flagellate Ancyromonas (=Planomonas) lacks close relatives in most molecular phylogenies, and it is suspected that it does not belong to any of the recognized eukaryote 'supergroups', making it an organism of great evolutionary interest. Proposed relatives include apusomonads and excavates, but limited understanding of the ancyromonad cytoskeleton has precluded identification of candidate structural homologies. We present a detailed analysis of the ultrastructure of Ancyromonas through computer-based reconstruction of serial sections. We confirm or extend previous observations of its major organelles (mitochondria, Golgi body, extrusomes, etc.) and pellicle, and distinguish a system of stacked endomembranes that may be developmentally connected to the glycocalyx. Ancyromonas has two basal bodies, each with its own flagellar pocket. The anterior basal body associates with two microtubular elements: a doublet root that runs from between the basal bodies to support the cell's rostrum, and a short singlet root. The posterior basal body is associated with two multi-microtubular structures and a singlet root. One multi-microtubular structure, L1, is a conventional microtubular root. The other structure appears as a curved ribbon of ∼8 microtubules near the basal body, but then flares out into two multi-microtubular elements, L2 and L3, plus two single microtubules. The posterior singlet root originates independently near this second complex. L1, the singlet, L2, and L3 all support the posterior flagellar pocket and channel. We also identified several groups of peripheral microtubules. Possible homologies with the flagellar apparatus of both apusomonads and excavates include a splitting root on the right side of the posterior basal body and a singlet root, both supporting a longitudinal channel or groove associated with the posterior flagellum. The anterior flagellar apparatus in each includes a root supporting structures to the left of the

  9. Targeted metagenomics and ecology of globally important uncultured eukaryotic phytoplankton.

    PubMed

    Cuvelier, Marie L; Allen, Andrew E; Monier, Adam; McCrow, John P; Messié, Monique; Tringe, Susannah G; Woyke, Tanja; Welsh, Rory M; Ishoey, Thomas; Lee, Jae-Hyeok; Binder, Brian J; DuPont, Chris L; Latasa, Mikel; Guigand, Cédric; Buck, Kurt R; Hilton, Jason; Thiagarajan, Mathangi; Caler, Elisabet; Read, Betsy; Lasken, Roger S; Chavez, Francisco P; Worden, Alexandra Z

    2010-08-17

    Among eukaryotes, four major phytoplankton lineages are responsible for marine photosynthesis; prymnesiophytes, alveolates, stramenopiles, and prasinophytes. Contributions by individual taxa, however, are not well known, and genomes have been analyzed from only the latter two lineages. Tiny "picoplanktonic" members of the prymnesiophyte lineage have long been inferred to be ecologically important but remain poorly characterized. Here, we examine pico-prymnesiophyte evolutionary history and ecology using cultivation-independent methods. 18S rRNA gene analysis showed pico-prymnesiophytes belonged to broadly distributed uncultivated taxa. Therefore, we used targeted metagenomics to analyze uncultured pico-prymnesiophytes sorted by flow cytometry from subtropical North Atlantic waters. The data reveal a composite nuclear-encoded gene repertoire with strong green-lineage affiliations, which contrasts with the evolutionary history indicated by the plastid genome. Measured pico-prymnesiophyte growth rates were rapid in this region, resulting in primary production contributions similar to the cyanobacterium Prochlorococcus. On average, pico-prymnesiophytes formed 25% of global picophytoplankton biomass, with differing contributions in five biogeographical provinces spanning tropical to subpolar systems. Elements likely contributing to success include high gene density and genes potentially involved in defense and nutrient uptake. Our findings have implications reaching beyond pico-prymnesiophytes, to the prasinophytes and stramenopiles. For example, prevalence of putative Ni-containing superoxide dismutases (SODs), instead of Fe-containing SODs, seems to be a common adaptation among eukaryotic phytoplankton for reducing Fe quotas in low-Fe modern oceans. Moreover, highly mosaic gene repertoires, although compositionally distinct for each major eukaryotic lineage, now seem to be an underlying facet of successful marine phytoplankton.

  10. Reassessing the first appearance of eukaryotes and cyanobacteria.

    PubMed

    Rasmussen, Birger; Fletcher, Ian R; Brocks, Jochen J; Kilburn, Matt R

    2008-10-23

    The evolution of oxygenic photosynthesis had a profound impact on the Earth's surface chemistry, leading to a sharp rise in atmospheric oxygen between 2.45 and 2.32 billion years (Gyr) ago and the onset of extreme ice ages. The oldest widely accepted evidence for oxygenic photosynthesis has come from hydrocarbons extracted from approximately 2.7-Gyr-old shales in the Pilbara Craton, Australia, which contain traces of biomarkers (molecular fossils) indicative of eukaryotes and suggestive of oxygen-producing cyanobacteria. The soluble hydrocarbons were interpreted to be indigenous and syngenetic despite metamorphic alteration and extreme enrichment (10-20 per thousand) of (13)C relative to bulk sedimentary organic matter. Here we present micrometre-scale, in situ (13)C/(12)C measurements of pyrobitumen (thermally altered petroleum) and kerogen from these metamorphosed shales, including samples that originally yielded biomarkers. Our results show that both kerogen and pyrobitumen are strongly depleted in (13)C, indicating that indigenous petroleum is 10-20 per thousand lighter than the extracted hydrocarbons. These results are inconsistent with an indigenous origin for the biomarkers. Whatever their origin, the biomarkers must have entered the rock after peak metamorphism approximately 2.2 Gyr ago and thus do not provide evidence for the existence of eukaryotes and cyanobacteria in the Archaean eon. The oldest fossil evidence for eukaryotes and cyanobacteria therefore reverts to 1.78-1.68 Gyr ago and approximately 2.15 Gyr ago, respectively. Our results eliminate the evidence for oxygenic photosynthesis approximately 2.7 Gyr ago and exclude previous biomarker evidence for a long delay (approximately 300 million years) between the appearance of oxygen-producing cyanobacteria and the rise in atmospheric oxygen 2.45-2.32 Gyr ago.

  11. P transposable elements in Drosophila and other eukaryotic organisms

    PubMed Central

    Majumdar, Sharmistha; Rio, Donald C.

    2015-01-01

    P transposable elements were discovered in Drosophila as the causative agents of a syndrome of genetic traits called hybrid dysgenesis. Hybrid dysgenesis exhibits a unique pattern of maternal inheritance linked to the germline-specific small RNA piwi-interacting (piRNA) pathway. The use of P transposable elements as vectors for gene transfer and as genetic tools revolutionized the field of Drosophila molecular genetics. P element transposons have served as a useful model to investigate mechanisms of cut-and-paste transposition in eukaryotes. Biochemical studies have revealed new and unexpected insights into how eukaryotic DNA-based transposons are mobilized. For example, the P element transposase makes unusual 17nt-3’ extended double-strand DNA breaks at the transposon termini and uses guanosine triphosphate (GTP) as a cofactor to promote synapsis of the two transposon ends early in the transposition pathway. The N-terminal DNA binding domain of the P element transposase, called a THAP domain, contains a C2CH zinc-coordinating motif and is the founding member of a large family of animal-specific site-specific DNA binding proteins. Over the past decade genome sequencing efforts have revealed the presence of P element-like transposable elements or P element transposase-like genes (called THAP9) in many eukaryotic genomes, including vertebrates, such as primates including humans, zebrafish and Xenopus, as well as the human parasite Trichomonas vaginalis, the sea squirt Ciona, sea urchin and hydra. Surprisingly, the human and zebrafish P element transposase-related THAP9 genes promote transposition of the Drosophila P element transposon DNA in human and Drosophila cells, indicating that the THAP9 genes encode active P element “transposase” proteins. PMID:25893144

  12. P Transposable Elements in Drosophila and other Eukaryotic Organisms.

    PubMed

    Majumdar, Sharmistha; Rio, Donald C

    2015-04-01

    P transposable elements were discovered in Drosophila as the causative agents of a syndrome of genetic traits called hybrid dysgenesis. Hybrid dysgenesis exhibits a unique pattern of maternal inheritance linked to the germline-specific small RNA piwi-interacting (piRNA) pathway. The use of P transposable elements as vectors for gene transfer and as genetic tools revolutionized the field of Drosophila molecular genetics. P element transposons have served as a useful model to investigate mechanisms of cut-and-paste transposition in eukaryotes. Biochemical studies have revealed new and unexpected insights into how eukaryotic DNA-based transposons are mobilized. For example, the P element transposase makes unusual 17nt-3' extended double-strand DNA breaks at the transposon termini and uses guanosine triphosphate (GTP) as a cofactor to promote synapsis of the two transposon ends early in the transposition pathway. The N-terminal DNA binding domain of the P element transposase, called a THAP domain, contains a C2CH zinc-coordinating motif and is the founding member of a large family of animal-specific site-specific DNA binding proteins. Over the past decade genome sequencing efforts have revealed the presence of P element-like transposable elements or P element transposase-like genes (called THAP9) in many eukaryotic genomes, including vertebrates, such as primates including humans, zebrafish and Xenopus, as well as the human parasite Trichomonas vaginalis, the sea squirt Ciona, sea urchin and hydra. Surprisingly, the human and zebrafish P element transposase-related THAP9 genes promote transposition of the Drosophila P element transposon DNA in human and Drosophila cells, indicating that the THAP9 genes encode active P element "transposase" proteins. PMID:26104714

  13. Eukaryotic DNA metabolism. Are deoxyribonucleotides channeled to replication sites?

    PubMed

    Mathews, C K; Slabaugh, M B

    1986-02-01

    DNA precursor biosynthesis is closely coordinated with DNA replication itself. In prokaryotic systems, firm evidence supports the idea that this coordination is achieved through the action of multienzyme complexes that physically link the synthesis of deoxyribonucleotides with their utilization in DNA replication. Much evidence favors a similar channeling mechanism in eukaryotes. However, recent studies suggest strongly that in mammalian cells DNA precursors are synthesized in cytoplasm and are then transported into the nucleus. This article reviews the pertinent evidence, attempts to reconcile contradictory findings, and highlights areas that need further investigation.

  14. Micro-Eukaryotic Diversity in Hypolithons from Miers Valley, Antarctica

    PubMed Central

    Gokul, Jarishma K.; Valverde, Angel; Tuffin, Marla; Cary, Stephen Craig; Cowan, Don A.

    2013-01-01

    The discovery of extensive and complex hypolithic communities in both cold and hot deserts has raised many questions regarding their ecology, biodiversity and relevance in terms of regional productivity. However, most hypolithic research has focused on the bacterial elements of the community. This study represents the first investigation of micro-eukaryotic communities in all three hypolith types. Here we show that Antarctic hypoliths support extensive populations of novel uncharacterized bryophyta, fungi and protists and suggest that well known producer-decomposer-predator interactions may create the necessary conditions for hypolithic productivity in Antarctic deserts. PMID:24832664

  15. Exploitation of Eukaryotic Subcellular Targeting Mechanisms by Bacterial Effectors

    PubMed Central

    Hicks, Stuart W.; Galán, Jorge E.

    2013-01-01

    Several bacteria have evolved specialized secretion systems to deliver bacterial effector proteins into eukaryotic cells with the capacity to modulate cellular pathways to promote bacterial survival and replication. The spatial and temporal context in which effectors exert their biochemical activities is critical for their function. Understanding the mechanisms that lead to their precise subcellular localization following delivery into host cells is essential for understanding effector function in the context of infection. Recent studies have shown that bacterial effectors exploit host cellular machinery to accurately target their biochemical activities within the host cell. PMID:23588250

  16. Tetrahymena as a Unicellular Model Eukaryote: Genetic and Genomic Tools.

    PubMed

    Ruehle, Marisa D; Orias, Eduardo; Pearson, Chad G

    2016-06-01

    Tetrahymena thermophila is a ciliate model organism whose study has led to important discoveries and insights into both conserved and divergent biological processes. In this review, we describe the tools for the use of Tetrahymena as a model eukaryote, including an overview of its life cycle, orientation to its evolutionary roots, and methodological approaches to forward and reverse genetics. Recent genomic tools have expanded Tetrahymena's utility as a genetic model system. With the unique advantages that Tetrahymena provide, we argue that it will continue to be a model organism of choice.

  17. Tetrahymena as a Unicellular Model Eukaryote: Genetic and Genomic Tools.

    PubMed

    Ruehle, Marisa D; Orias, Eduardo; Pearson, Chad G

    2016-06-01

    Tetrahymena thermophila is a ciliate model organism whose study has led to important discoveries and insights into both conserved and divergent biological processes. In this review, we describe the tools for the use of Tetrahymena as a model eukaryote, including an overview of its life cycle, orientation to its evolutionary roots, and methodological approaches to forward and reverse genetics. Recent genomic tools have expanded Tetrahymena's utility as a genetic model system. With the unique advantages that Tetrahymena provide, we argue that it will continue to be a model organism of choice. PMID:27270699

  18. The effect of negative autoregulation on eukaryotic gene expression

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nevozhay, Dmitry; Adams, Rhys; Murphy, Kevin; Josic, Kresimir; Balázsi, G. Ábor

    2009-03-01

    Negative autoregulation is a frequent motif in gene regulatory networks, which has been studied extensively in prokaryotes. Nevertheless, some effects of negative feedback on gene expression in eukaryotic transcriptional networks remain unknown. We studied how the strength of negative feedback regulation affects the characteristics of gene expression in yeast cells carrying synthetic transcriptional cascades. We observed a drastic reduction of gene expression noise and a change in the shape of the dose-response curve. We explained these experimentally observed effects by stochastic simulations and a simple set of algebraic equations.

  19. Rationales and Approaches for Studying Metabolism in Eukaryotic Microalgae

    PubMed Central

    Veyel, Daniel; Erban, Alexander; Fehrle, Ines; Kopka, Joachim; Schroda, Michael

    2014-01-01

    The generation of efficient production strains is essential for the use of eukaryotic microalgae for biofuel production. Systems biology approaches including metabolite profiling on promising microalgal strains, will provide a better understanding of their metabolic networks, which is crucial for metabolic engineering efforts. Chlamydomonas reinhardtii represents a suited model system for this purpose. We give an overview to genetically amenable microalgal strains with the potential for biofuel production and provide a critical review of currently used protocols for metabolite profiling on Chlamydomonas. We provide our own experimental data to underpin the validity of the conclusions drawn. PMID:24957022

  20. Micro-eukaryotic diversity in hypolithons from miers valley, antarctica.

    PubMed

    Gokul, Jarishma K; Valverde, Angel; Tuffin, Marla; Cary, Stephen Craig; Cowan, Don A

    2013-01-01

    The discovery of extensive and complex hypolithic communities in both cold and hot deserts has raised many questions regarding their ecology, biodiversity and relevance in terms of regional productivity. However, most hypolithic research has focused on the bacterial elements of the community. This study represents the first investigation of micro-eukaryotic communities in all three hypolith types. Here we show that Antarctic hypoliths support extensive populations of novel uncharacterized bryophyta, fungi and protists and suggest that well known producer-decomposer-predator interactions may create the necessary conditions for hypolithic productivity in Antarctic deserts.

  1. Archean molecular fossils and the early rise of eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Brocks, J J; Logan, G A; Buick, R; Summons, R E

    1999-08-13

    Molecular fossils of biological lipids are preserved in 2700-million-year-old shales from the Pilbara Craton, Australia. Sequential extraction of adjacent samples shows that these hydrocarbon biomarkers are indigenous and syngenetic to the Archean shales, greatly extending the known geological range of such molecules. The presence of abundant 2alpha-methylhopanes, which are characteristic of cyanobacteria, indicates that oxygenic photosynthesis evolved well before the atmosphere became oxidizing. The presence of steranes, particularly cholestane and its 28- to 30-carbon analogs, provides persuasive evidence for the existence of eukaryotes 500 million to 1 billion years before the extant fossil record indicates that the lineage arose.

  2. Sex is a ubiquitous, ancient, and inherent attribute of eukaryotic life.

    PubMed

    Speijer, Dave; Lukeš, Julius; Eliáš, Marek

    2015-07-21

    Sexual reproduction and clonality in eukaryotes are mostly seen as exclusive, the latter being rather exceptional. This view might be biased by focusing almost exclusively on metazoans. We analyze and discuss reproduction in the context of extant eukaryotic diversity, paying special attention to protists. We present results of phylogenetically extended searches for homologs of two proteins functioning in cell and nuclear fusion, respectively (HAP2 and GEX1), providing indirect evidence for these processes in several eukaryotic lineages where sex has not been observed yet. We argue that (i) the debate on the relative significance of sex and clonality in eukaryotes is confounded by not appropriately distinguishing multicellular and unicellular organisms; (ii) eukaryotic sex is extremely widespread and already present in the last eukaryotic common ancestor; and (iii) the general mode of existence of eukaryotes is best described by clonally propagating cell lines with episodic sex triggered by external or internal clues. However, important questions concern the relative longevity of true clonal species (i.e., species not able to return to sexual procreation anymore). Long-lived clonal species seem strikingly rare. We analyze their properties in the light of meiotic sex development from existing prokaryotic repair mechanisms. Based on these considerations, we speculate that eukaryotic sex likely developed as a cellular survival strategy, possibly in the context of internal reactive oxygen species stress generated by a (proto) mitochondrion. Thus, in the context of the symbiogenic model of eukaryotic origin, sex might directly result from the very evolutionary mode by which eukaryotic cells arose.

  3. Phylogenomics of Sterol Synthesis: Insights into the Origin, Evolution, and Diversity of a Key Eukaryotic Feature

    PubMed Central

    Desmond, Elie

    2009-01-01

    The availability of complete genomes from a wide sampling of eukaryotic diversity has allowed the application of phylogenomics approaches to study the origin and evolution of unique eukaryotic cellular structures, but these are still poorly applied to study unique eukaryotic metabolic pathways. Sterols are a good example because they are an essential feature of eukaryotic membranes. The sterol pathway has been well dissected in vertebrates, fungi, and land plants. However, although different types of sterols have been identified in other eukaryotic lineages, their pathways have not been fully characterized. We have carried out an extensive analysis of the taxonomic distribution and phylogeny of the enzymes of the sterol pathway in a large sampling of eukaryotic lineages. This allowed us to tentatively indicate features of the sterol pathway in organisms where this has not been characterized and to point out a number of steps for which yet-to-discover enzymes may be at work. We also inferred that the last eukaryotic common ancestor already harbored a large panel of enzymes for sterol synthesis and that subsequent evolution over the eukaryotic tree occurred by tinkering, mainly by gene losses. We highlight a high capacity of sterol synthesis in the myxobacterium Plesiocystis pacifica, and we support the hypothesis that the few bacteria that harbor homologs of the sterol pathway have likely acquired these via horizontal gene transfer from eukaryotes. Finally, we propose a potential candidate for the elusive enzyme performing C-3 ketoreduction (ERG27 equivalent) in land plants and probably in other eukaryotic phyla. PMID:20333205

  4. Three-dimensional structural analysis of eukaryotic flagella/cilia by electron cryo-tomography.

    PubMed

    Bui, Khanh Huy; Pigino, Gaia; Ishikawa, Takashi

    2011-01-01

    Electron cryo-tomography is a potential approach to analyzing the three-dimensional conformation of frozen hydrated biological macromolecules using electron microscopy. Since projections of each individual object illuminated from different orientations are merged, electron tomography is capable of structural analysis of such heterogeneous environments as in vivo or with polymorphism, although radiation damage and the missing wedge are severe problems. Here, recent results on the structure of eukaryotic flagella, which is an ATP-driven bending organelle, from green algae Chlamydomonas are presented. Tomographic analysis reveals asymmetric molecular arrangements, especially that of the dynein motor proteins, in flagella, giving insight into the mechanism of planar asymmetric bending motion. Methodological challenges to obtaining higher-resolution structures from this technique are also discussed. PMID:21169680

  5. Three-dimensional structural analysis of eukaryotic flagella/cilia by electron cryo-tomography.

    PubMed

    Bui, Khanh Huy; Pigino, Gaia; Ishikawa, Takashi

    2011-01-01

    Electron cryo-tomography is a potential approach to analyzing the three-dimensional conformation of frozen hydrated biological macromolecules using electron microscopy. Since projections of each individual object illuminated from different orientations are merged, electron tomography is capable of structural analysis of such heterogeneous environments as in vivo or with polymorphism, although radiation damage and the missing wedge are severe problems. Here, recent results on the structure of eukaryotic flagella, which is an ATP-driven bending organelle, from green algae Chlamydomonas are presented. Tomographic analysis reveals asymmetric molecular arrangements, especially that of the dynein motor proteins, in flagella, giving insight into the mechanism of planar asymmetric bending motion. Methodological challenges to obtaining higher-resolution structures from this technique are also discussed.

  6. Analyses of RNA Polymerase II genes from free-living protists: phylogeny, long branch attraction, and the eukaryotic big bang.

    PubMed

    Dacks, Joel B; Marinets, Alexandra; Ford Doolittle, W; Cavalier-Smith, Thomas; Logsdon, John M

    2002-06-01

    The phylogenetic relationships among major eukaryotic protist lineages are largely uncertain. Two significant obstacles in reconstructing eukaryotic phylogeny are long-branch attraction (LBA) effects and poor taxon sampling of free-living protists. We have obtained and analyzed gene sequences encoding the largest subunit of RNA Polymerase II (RPB1) from Naegleria gruberi (a heterolobosean), Cercomonas ATCC 50319 (a cercozoan), and Ochromonas danica (a heterokont); we have also analyzed the RPB1 gene from the nucleomorph (nm) genome of Guillardia theta (a cryptomonad). Using a variety of phylogenetic methods our analysis shows that RPB1s from Giardia intestinalis and Trichomonas vaginalis are probably subject to intense LBA effects. Thus, the deep branching of these taxa on RPB1 trees is questionable and should not be interpreted as evidence favoring their early divergence. Similar effects are discernable, to a lesser extent, with the Mastigamoeba invertens RPB1 sequence. Upon removal of the outgroup and these problematic sequences, analyses of the remaining RPB1s indicate some resolution among major eukaryotic groups. The most robustly supported higher-level clades are the opisthokonts (animals plus fungi) and the red algae plus the cryptomonad nm-the latter result gives added support to the red algal origin of cryptomonad chloroplasts. Clades comprising Dictyostelium discoideum plus Acanthamoeba castellanii (Amoebozoa) and Ochromonas plus Plasmodium falciparum (chromalveolates) are consistently observed and moderately supported. The clades supported by our RPB1 analyses are congruent with other data, suggesting that bona fide phylogenetic relationships are being resolved. Thus, the RPB1 gene has apparently retained some phylogenetically meaningful signal, making it worthwhile to obtain sequences from more diverse protist taxa. Additional RPB1 data, especially in combination with other genes, should provide further resolution of branching orders among protist

  7. The Naegleria genome: a free-living microbial eukaryote lends unique insights into core eukaryotic cell biology

    PubMed Central

    Fritz-Laylin, Lillian K.; Ginger, Michael L.; Walsh, Charles; Dawson, Scott C.; Fulton, Chandler

    2016-01-01

    Naegleria gruberi, a free-living protist, has long been treasured as a model for basal body and flagellar assembly due to its ability to differentiate from crawling amoebae into swimming flagellates. The full genome sequence of Naegleria gruberi has recently been used to estimate gene families ancestral to all eukaryotes and to identify novel aspects of Naegleria biology, including likely facultative anaerobic metabolism, extensive signaling cascades, and evidence for sexuality. Distinctive features of the Naegleria genome and nuclear biology provide unique perspectives for comparative cell biology, including cell division, RNA processing and nucleolar assembly. We highlight here exciting new and novel aspects of Naegleria biology identified through genomic analysis. PMID:21392573

  8. Ciliary contact interactions dominate surface scattering of swimming eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Kantsler, Vasily; Dunkel, Jörn; Polin, Marco; Goldstein, Raymond E.

    2013-01-01

    Interactions between swimming cells and surfaces are essential to many microbiological processes, from bacterial biofilm formation to human fertilization. However, despite their fundamental importance, relatively little is known about the physical mechanisms that govern the scattering of flagellated or ciliated cells from solid surfaces. A more detailed understanding of these interactions promises not only new biological insights into structure and dynamics of flagella and cilia but may also lead to new microfluidic techniques for controlling cell motility and microbial locomotion, with potential applications ranging from diagnostic tools to therapeutic protein synthesis and photosynthetic biofuel production. Due to fundamental differences in physiology and swimming strategies, it is an open question of whether microfluidic transport and rectification schemes that have recently been demonstrated for pusher-type microswimmers such as bacteria and sperm cells, can be transferred to puller-type algae and other motile eukaryotes, because it is not known whether long-range hydrodynamic or short-range mechanical forces dominate the surface interactions of these microorganisms. Here, using high-speed microscopic imaging, we present direct experimental evidence that the surface scattering of both mammalian sperm cells and unicellular green algae is primarily governed by direct ciliary contact interactions. Building on this insight, we predict and experimentally verify the existence of optimal microfluidic ratchets that maximize rectification of initially uniform Chlamydomonas reinhardtii suspensions. Because mechano-elastic properties of cilia are conserved across eukaryotic species, we expect that our results apply to a wide range of swimming microorganisms. PMID:23297240

  9. Structural and functional relationships between prokaryotic and eukaryotic DNA polymerases.

    PubMed

    Bernad, A; Zaballos, A; Salas, M; Blanco, L

    1987-12-20

    The Bacillus subtilis phage luminal diameter 29 DNA polymerase, involved in protein-primed viral DNA replication, was inhibited by phosphonoacetic acid (PAA), a known inhibitor of alpha-like DNA polymerases, by decreasing the rate of elongation. Three highly conserved regions of amino acid homology, found in several viral alpha-like DNA polymerases and in the luminal diameter 29 DNA polymerase, one of them proposed to be the PAA binding site, were also found in the T4 DNA polymerase. This prokaryotic enzyme was highly sensitive to the drugs aphidicolin and the nucleotide analogues butylanilino dATP (BuAdATP) and butylphenyl dGTP (BuPdGTP), known to be specific inhibitors of eukaryotic alpha-like DNA polymerases. Two potential DNA polymerases from the linear plasmid pGKL1 from yeast and the S1 mitochondrial DNA from maize have been identified, based on the fact that they contain the three conserved regions of amino acid homology. Comparison of DNA polymerases from prokaryotic and eukaryotic origin showed extensive amino acid homology in addition to highly conserved domains. These findings reflect evolutionary relationships between hypothetically unrelated DNA polymerases.

  10. Eukaryotic snoRNAs: a paradigm for gene expression flexibility.

    PubMed

    Dieci, Giorgio; Preti, Milena; Montanini, Barbara

    2009-08-01

    Small nucleolar RNAs (snoRNAs) are one of the most ancient and numerous families of non-protein-coding RNAs (ncRNAs). The main function of snoRNAs - to guide site-specific rRNA modification - is the same in Archaea and all eukaryotic lineages. In contrast, as revealed by recent genomic and RNomic studies, their genomic organization and expression strategies are the most varied. Seemingly snoRNA coding units have adopted, in the course of evolution, all the possible ways of being transcribed, thus providing a unique paradigm of gene expression flexibility. By focusing on representative fungal, plant and animal genomes, we review here all the documented types of snoRNA gene organization and expression, and we provide a comprehensive account of snoRNA expressional freedom by precisely estimating the frequency, in each genome, of each type of genomic organization. We finally discuss the relevance of snoRNA genomic studies for our general understanding of ncRNA family evolution and expression in eukaryotes.

  11. Protein-responsive ribozyme switches in eukaryotic cells.

    PubMed

    Kennedy, Andrew B; Vowles, James V; d'Espaux, Leo; Smolke, Christina D

    2014-10-29

    Genetic devices that directly detect and respond to intracellular concentrations of proteins are important synthetic biology tools, supporting the design of biological systems that target, respond to or alter specific cellular states. Here, we develop ribozyme-based devices that respond to protein ligands in two eukaryotic hosts, yeast and mammalian cells, to regulate the expression of a gene of interest. Our devices allow for both gene-ON and gene-OFF response upon sensing the protein ligand. As part of our design process, we describe an in vitro characterization pipeline for prescreening device designs to identify promising candidates for in vivo testing. The in vivo gene-regulatory activities in the two types of eukaryotic cells correlate with in vitro cleavage activities determined at different physiologically relevant magnesium concentrations. Finally, localization studies with the ligand demonstrate that ribozyme switches respond to ligands present in the nucleus and/or cytoplasm, providing new insight into their mechanism of action. By extending the sensing capabilities of this important class of gene-regulatory device, our work supports the implementation of ribozyme-based devices in applications requiring the detection of protein biomarkers.

  12. Probabilistic models of eukaryotic evolution: time for integration

    PubMed Central

    Lartillot, Nicolas

    2015-01-01

    In spite of substantial work and recent progress, a global and fully resolved picture of the macroevolutionary history of eukaryotes is still under construction. This concerns not only the phylogenetic relations among major groups, but also the general characteristics of the underlying macroevolutionary processes, including the patterns of gene family evolution associated with endosymbioses, as well as their impact on the sequence evolutionary process. All these questions raise formidable methodological challenges, calling for a more powerful statistical paradigm. In this direction, model-based probabilistic approaches have played an increasingly important role. In particular, improved models of sequence evolution accounting for heterogeneities across sites and across lineages have led to significant, although insufficient, improvement in phylogenetic accuracy. More recently, one main trend has been to move away from simple parametric models and stepwise approaches, towards integrative models explicitly considering the intricate interplay between multiple levels of macroevolutionary processes. Such integrative models are in their infancy, and their application to the phylogeny of eukaryotes still requires substantial improvement of the underlying models, as well as additional computational developments. PMID:26323768

  13. In Silico Ionomics Segregates Parasitic from Free-Living Eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Greganova, Eva; Steinmann, Michael; Mäser, Pascal; Fankhauser, Niklaus

    2013-01-01

    Ion transporters are fundamental to life. Due to their ancient origin and conservation in sequence, ion transporters are also particularly well suited for comparative genomics of distantly related species. Here, we perform genome-wide ion transporter profiling as a basis for comparative genomics of eukaryotes. From a given predicted proteome, we identify all bona fide ion channels, ion porters, and ion pumps. Concentrating on unicellular eukaryotes (n = 37), we demonstrate that clustering of species according to their repertoire of ion transporters segregates obligate endoparasites (n = 23) on the one hand, from free-living species and facultative parasites (n = 14) on the other hand. This surprising finding indicates strong convergent evolution of the parasites regarding the acquisition and homeostasis of inorganic ions. Random forest classification identifies transporters of ammonia, plus transporters of iron and other transition metals, as the most informative for distinguishing the obligate parasites. Thus, in silico ionomics further underscores the importance of iron in infection biology and suggests access to host sources of nitrogen and transition metals to be selective forces in the evolution of parasitism. This finding is in agreement with the phenomenon of iron withholding as a primordial antimicrobial strategy of infected mammals. PMID:24048281

  14. Mapping paths: new approaches to dissect eukaryotic signaling circuitry.

    PubMed

    Mutlu, Nebibe; Kumar, Anuj

    2016-01-01

    Eukaryotic cells are precisely "wired" to coordinate changes in external and intracellular signals with corresponding adjustments in the output of complex and often interconnected signaling pathways. These pathways are critical in understanding cellular growth and function, and several experimental trends are emerging with applicability toward more fully describing the composition and topology of eukaryotic signaling networks. In particular, recent studies have implemented CRISPR/Cas-based screens in mouse and human cell lines for genes involved in various cell growth and disease phenotypes. Proteomic methods using mass spectrometry have enabled quantitative and dynamic profiling of protein interactions, revealing previously undiscovered complexes and allele-specific protein interactions. Methods for the single-cell study of protein localization and gene expression have been integrated with computational analyses to provide insight into cell signaling in yeast and metazoans. In this review, we present an overview of exemplary studies using the above approaches, relevant for the analysis of cell signaling and indeed, more broadly, for many modern biological applications.

  15. "Race for the Surface": Eukaryotic Cells Can Win.

    PubMed

    Pham, Vy T H; Truong, Vi Khanh; Orlowska, Anna; Ghanaati, Shahram; Barbeck, Mike; Booms, Patrick; Fulcher, Alex J; Bhadra, Chris M; Buividas, Ričardas; Baulin, Vladimir; Kirkpatrick, C James; Doran, Pauline; Mainwaring, David E; Juodkazis, Saulius; Crawford, Russell J; Ivanova, Elena P

    2016-08-31

    With an aging population and the consequent increasing use of medical implants, managing the possible infections arising from implant surgery remains a global challenge. Here, we demonstrate for the first time that a precise nanotopology provides an effective intervention in bacterial cocolonization enabling the proliferation of eukaryotic cells on a substratum surface, preinfected by both live Gram-negative, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Gram-positive, Staphylococcus aureus, pathogenic bacteria. The topology of the model black silicon (bSi) substratum not only favors the proliferation of eukaryotic cells but is biocompatible, not triggering an inflammatory response in the host. The attachment behavior and development of filopodia when COS-7 fibroblast cells are placed in contact with the bSi surface are demonstrated in the dynamic study, which is based on the use of real-time sequential confocal imaging. Bactericidal nanotopology may enhance the prospect for further development of inherently responsive antibacterial nanomaterials for bionic applications such as prosthetics and implants. PMID:27494044

  16. Ciliary contact interactions dominate surface scattering of swimming eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Kantsler, Vasily; Dunkel, Jörn; Polin, Marco; Goldstein, Raymond E

    2013-01-22

    Interactions between swimming cells and surfaces are essential to many microbiological processes, from bacterial biofilm formation to human fertilization. However, despite their fundamental importance, relatively little is known about the physical mechanisms that govern the scattering of flagellated or ciliated cells from solid surfaces. A more detailed understanding of these interactions promises not only new biological insights into structure and dynamics of flagella and cilia but may also lead to new microfluidic techniques for controlling cell motility and microbial locomotion, with potential applications ranging from diagnostic tools to therapeutic protein synthesis and photosynthetic biofuel production. Due to fundamental differences in physiology and swimming strategies, it is an open question of whether microfluidic transport and rectification schemes that have recently been demonstrated for pusher-type microswimmers such as bacteria and sperm cells, can be transferred to puller-type algae and other motile eukaryotes, because it is not known whether long-range hydrodynamic or short-range mechanical forces dominate the surface interactions of these microorganisms. Here, using high-speed microscopic imaging, we present direct experimental evidence that the surface scattering of both mammalian sperm cells and unicellular green algae is primarily governed by direct ciliary contact interactions. Building on this insight, we predict and experimentally verify the existence of optimal microfluidic ratchets that maximize rectification of initially uniform Chlamydomonas reinhardtii suspensions. Because mechano-elastic properties of cilia are conserved across eukaryotic species, we expect that our results apply to a wide range of swimming microorganisms. PMID:23297240

  17. Ciliary contact interactions dominate surface scattering of swimming eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Kantsler, Vasily; Dunkel, Jörn; Polin, Marco; Goldstein, Raymond E

    2013-01-22

    Interactions between swimming cells and surfaces are essential to many microbiological processes, from bacterial biofilm formation to human fertilization. However, despite their fundamental importance, relatively little is known about the physical mechanisms that govern the scattering of flagellated or ciliated cells from solid surfaces. A more detailed understanding of these interactions promises not only new biological insights into structure and dynamics of flagella and cilia but may also lead to new microfluidic techniques for controlling cell motility and microbial locomotion, with potential applications ranging from diagnostic tools to therapeutic protein synthesis and photosynthetic biofuel production. Due to fundamental differences in physiology and swimming strategies, it is an open question of whether microfluidic transport and rectification schemes that have recently been demonstrated for pusher-type microswimmers such as bacteria and sperm cells, can be transferred to puller-type algae and other motile eukaryotes, because it is not known whether long-range hydrodynamic or short-range mechanical forces dominate the surface interactions of these microorganisms. Here, using high-speed microscopic imaging, we present direct experimental evidence that the surface scattering of both mammalian sperm cells and unicellular green algae is primarily governed by direct ciliary contact interactions. Building on this insight, we predict and experimentally verify the existence of optimal microfluidic ratchets that maximize rectification of initially uniform Chlamydomonas reinhardtii suspensions. Because mechano-elastic properties of cilia are conserved across eukaryotic species, we expect that our results apply to a wide range of swimming microorganisms.

  18. Protein-responsive ribozyme switches in eukaryotic cells

    PubMed Central

    Kennedy, Andrew B.; Vowles, James V.; d'Espaux, Leo; Smolke, Christina D.

    2014-01-01

    Genetic devices that directly detect and respond to intracellular concentrations of proteins are important synthetic biology tools, supporting the design of biological systems that target, respond to or alter specific cellular states. Here, we develop ribozyme-based devices that respond to protein ligands in two eukaryotic hosts, yeast and mammalian cells, to regulate the expression of a gene of interest. Our devices allow for both gene-ON and gene-OFF response upon sensing the protein ligand. As part of our design process, we describe an in vitro characterization pipeline for prescreening device designs to identify promising candidates for in vivo testing. The in vivo gene-regulatory activities in the two types of eukaryotic cells correlate with in vitro cleavage activities determined at different physiologically relevant magnesium concentrations. Finally, localization studies with the ligand demonstrate that ribozyme switches respond to ligands present in the nucleus and/or cytoplasm, providing new insight into their mechanism of action. By extending the sensing capabilities of this important class of gene-regulatory device, our work supports the implementation of ribozyme-based devices in applications requiring the detection of protein biomarkers. PMID:25274734

  19. Reprogramming eukaryotic translation with ligand-responsive synthetic RNA switches.

    PubMed

    Anzalone, Andrew V; Lin, Annie J; Zairis, Sakellarios; Rabadan, Raul; Cornish, Virginia W

    2016-05-01

    Protein synthesis in eukaryotes is regulated by diverse reprogramming mechanisms that expand the coding capacity of individual genes. Here, we exploit one such mechanism, termed -1 programmed ribosomal frameshifting (-1 PRF), to engineer ligand-responsive RNA switches that regulate protein expression. First, efficient -1 PRF stimulatory RNA elements were discovered by in vitro selection; then, ligand-responsive switches were constructed by coupling -1 PRF stimulatory elements to RNA aptamers using rational design and directed evolution in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. We demonstrate that -1 PRF switches tightly control the relative stoichiometry of two distinct protein outputs from a single mRNA, exhibiting consistent ligand response across whole populations of cells. Furthermore, -1 PRF switches were applied to build single-mRNA logic gates and an apoptosis module in yeast. Together, these results showcase the potential for harnessing translation-reprogramming mechanisms for synthetic biology, and they establish -1 PRF switches as powerful RNA tools for controlling protein synthesis in eukaryotes. PMID:26999002

  20. Amino acid runs in eukaryotic proteomes and disease associations

    PubMed Central

    Karlin, Samuel; Brocchieri, Luciano; Bergman, Aviv; Mrázek, Jan; Gentles, Andrew J.

    2002-01-01

    We present a comparative proteome analysis of the five complete eukaryotic genomes (human, Drosophila melanogaster, Caenorhabditis elegans, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Arabidopsis thaliana), focusing on individual and multiple amino acid runs, charge and hydrophobic runs. We found that human proteins with multiple long runs are often associated with diseases; these include long glutamine runs that induce neurological disorders, various cancers, categories of leukemias (mostly involving chromosomal translocations), and an abundance of Ca2 + and K+ channel proteins. Many human proteins with multiple runs function in development and/or transcription regulation and are Drosophila homeotic homologs. A large number of these proteins are expressed in the nervous system. More than 80% of Drosophila proteins with multiple runs seem to function in transcription regulation. The most frequent amino acid runs in Drosophila sequences occur for glutamine, alanine, and serine, whereas human sequences highlight glutamate, proline, and leucine. The most frequent runs in yeast are of serine, glutamine, and acidic residues. Compared with the other eukaryotic proteomes, amino acid runs are significantly more abundant in the fly. This finding might be interpreted in terms of innate differences in DNA-replication processes, repair mechanisms, DNA-modification systems, and mutational biases. There are striking differences in amino acid runs for glutamine, asparagine, and leucine among the five proteomes. PMID:11782551

  1. Prokaryotic and eukaryotic RNA polymerases have homologous core subunits.

    PubMed Central

    Sweetser, D; Nonet, M; Young, R A

    1987-01-01

    Eukaryotic RNA polymerases are complex aggregates whose component subunits are functionally ill-defined. The gene that encodes the 140,000-dalton subunit of Saccharomyces cerevisiae RNA polymerase II was isolated and studied in detail to obtain clues to the protein's function. This gene, RPB2, exists in a single copy in the haploid genome. Disruption of the gene is lethal to the yeast cell. RPB2 encodes a protein of 138,750 daltons, which contains sequences implicated in binding purine nucleotides and zinc ions and exhibits striking sequence homology with the beta subunit of Escherichia coli RNA polymerase. These observations suggest that the yeast and the E. coli subunit have similar roles in RNA synthesis, as the beta subunit contains binding sites for nucleotide substrates and a portion of the catalytic site for RNA synthesis. The subunit homologies reported here, and those observed previously with the largest RNA polymerase subunit, indicate that components of the prokaryotic RNA polymerase "core" enzyme have counterparts in eukaryotic RNA polymerases. PMID:3547406

  2. Marine biofilm bacteria evade eukaryotic predation by targeted chemical defense.

    PubMed

    Matz, Carsten; Webb, Jeremy S; Schupp, Peter J; Phang, Shui Yen; Penesyan, Anahit; Egan, Suhelen; Steinberg, Peter; Kjelleberg, Staffan

    2008-07-23

    Many plants and animals are defended from predation or herbivory by inhibitory secondary metabolites, which in the marine environment are very common among sessile organisms. Among bacteria, where there is the greatest metabolic potential, little is known about chemical defenses against bacterivorous consumers. An emerging hypothesis is that sessile bacterial communities organized as biofilms serve as bacterial refuge from predation. By testing growth and survival of two common bacterivorous nanoflagellates, we find evidence that chemically mediated resistance against protozoan predators is common among biofilm populations in a diverse set of marine bacteria. Using bioassay-guided chemical and genetic analysis, we identified one of the most effective antiprotozoal compounds as violacein, an alkaloid that we demonstrate is produced predominately within biofilm cells. Nanomolar concentrations of violacein inhibit protozoan feeding by inducing a conserved eukaryotic cell death program. Such biofilm-specific chemical defenses could contribute to the successful persistence of biofilm bacteria in various environments and provide the ecological and evolutionary context for a number of eukaryote-targeting bacterial metabolites.

  3. Archaea and the prokaryote-to-eukaryote transition.

    PubMed Central

    Brown, J R; Doolittle, W F

    1997-01-01

    Since the late 1970s, determining the phylogenetic relationships among the contemporary domains of life, the Archaea (archaebacteria), Bacteria (eubacteria), and Eucarya (eukaryotes), has been central to the study of early cellular evolution. The two salient issues surrounding the universal tree of life are whether all three domains are monophyletic (i.e., all equivalent in taxanomic rank) and where the root of the universal tree lies. Evaluation of the status of the Archaea has become key to answering these questions. This review considers our cumulative knowledge about the Archaea in relationship to the Bacteria and Eucarya. Particular attention is paid to the recent use of molecular phylogenetic approaches to reconstructing the tree of life. In this regard, the phylogenetic analyses of more than 60 proteins are reviewed and presented in the context of their participation in major biochemical pathways. Although many gene trees are incongruent, the majority do suggest a sisterhood between Archaea and Eucarya. Altering this general pattern of gene evolution are two kinds of potential interdomain gene transferrals. One horizontal gene exchange might have involved the gram-positive Bacteria and the Archaea, while the other might have occurred between proteobacteria and eukaryotes and might have been mediated by endosymbiosis. PMID:9409149

  4. Generic eukaryotic core promoter prediction using structural features of DNA.

    PubMed

    Abeel, Thomas; Saeys, Yvan; Bonnet, Eric; Rouzé, Pierre; Van de Peer, Yves

    2008-02-01

    Despite many recent efforts, in silico identification of promoter regions is still in its infancy. However, the accurate identification and delineation of promoter regions is important for several reasons, such as improving genome annotation and devising experiments to study and understand transcriptional regulation. Current methods to identify the core region of promoters require large amounts of high-quality training data and often behave like black box models that output predictions that are difficult to interpret. Here, we present a novel approach for predicting promoters in whole-genome sequences by using large-scale structural properties of DNA. Our technique requires no training, is applicable to many eukaryotic genomes, and performs extremely well in comparison with the best available promoter prediction programs. Moreover, it is fast, simple in design, and has no size constraints, and the results are easily interpretable. We compared our approach with 14 current state-of-the-art implementations using human gene and transcription start site data and analyzed the ENCODE region in more detail. We also validated our method on 12 additional eukaryotic genomes, including vertebrates, invertebrates, plants, fungi, and protists.

  5. New superfamilies of eukaryotic DNA transposons and their internal divisions.

    PubMed

    Bao, Weidong; Jurka, Matthew G; Kapitonov, Vladimir V; Jurka, Jerzy

    2009-05-01

    Despite their enormous diversity and abundance, all currently known eukaryotic DNA transposons belong to only 15 superfamilies. Here, we report two new superfamilies of DNA transposons, named Sola and Zator. Sola transposons encode DDD-transposases (transposase, TPase) and are flanked by 4-bp target site duplications (TSD). Elements from the Sola superfamily are distributed in a variety of species including bacteria, protists, plants, and metazoans. They can be divided into three distinct groups of elements named Sola1, Sola2, and Sola3. The elements from each group have extremely low sequence identity to each other, different termini, and different target site preferences. However, all three groups belong to a single superfamily based on significant PSI-Blast identities between their TPases. The DDD TPase sequences encoded by Sola transposons are not similar to any known TPases. The second superfamily named Zator is characterized by 3-bp TSD. The Zator superfamily is relatively rare in eukaryotic species, and it evolved from a bacterial transposon encoding a TPase belonging to the "transposase 36" family (Pfam07592). These transposons are named TP36 elements (abbreviated from transposase 36).

  6. Mimivirus gene promoters exhibit an unprecedented conservation among all eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Suhre, Karsten; Audic, Stéphane; Claverie, Jean-Michel

    2005-10-11

    The initial analysis of the recently sequenced genome of Acanthamoeba polyphaga Mimivirus, the largest known double-stranded DNA virus, predicted a proteome of size and complexity more akin to small parasitic bacteria than to other nucleocytoplasmic large DNA viruses and identified numerous functions never before described in a virus. It has been proposed that the Mimivirus lineage could have emerged before the individualization of cellular organisms from the three domains of life. An exhaustive in silico analysis of the noncoding moiety of all known viral genomes now uncovers the unprecedented perfect conservation of an AAAATTGA motif in close to 50% of the Mimivirus genes. This motif preferentially occurs in genes transcribed from the predicted leading strand and is associated with functions required early in the viral infectious cycle, such as transcription and protein translation. A comparison with the known promoter of unicellular eukaryotes, amoebal protists in particular, strongly suggests that the AAAATTGA motif is the structural equivalent of the TATA box core promoter element. This element is specific to the Mimivirus lineage and may correspond to an ancestral promoter structure predating the radiation of the eukaryotic kingdoms. This unprecedented conservation of core promoter regions is another exceptional feature of Mimivirus that again raises the question of its evolutionary origin.

  7. Biosynthesis of Selenocysteine on Its tRNA in Eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Mix, Heiko; Zhang, Yan; Saira, Kazima; Glass, Richard S; Berry, Marla J; Gladyshev, Vadim N; Hatfield, Dolph L

    2007-01-01

    Selenocysteine (Sec) is cotranslationally inserted into protein in response to UGA codons and is the 21st amino acid in the genetic code. However, the means by which Sec is synthesized in eukaryotes is not known. Herein, comparative genomics and experimental analyses revealed that the mammalian Sec synthase (SecS) is the previously identified pyridoxal phosphate-containing protein known as the soluble liver antigen. SecS required selenophosphate and O-phosphoseryl-tRNA[Ser]Sec as substrates to generate selenocysteyl-tRNA[Ser]Sec. Moreover, it was found that Sec was synthesized on the tRNA scaffold from selenide, ATP, and serine using tRNA[Ser]Sec, seryl-tRNA synthetase, O-phosphoseryl-tRNA[Ser]Sec kinase, selenophosphate synthetase, and SecS. By identifying the pathway of Sec biosynthesis in mammals, this study not only functionally characterized SecS but also assigned the function of the O-phosphoseryl-tRNA[Ser]Sec kinase. In addition, we found that selenophosphate synthetase 2 could synthesize monoselenophosphate in vitro but selenophosphate synthetase 1 could not. Conservation of the overall pathway of Sec biosynthesis suggests that this pathway is also active in other eukaryotes and archaea that synthesize selenoproteins. PMID:17194211

  8. Engineering key components in a synthetic eukaryotic signal transduction pathway

    PubMed Central

    Antunes, Mauricio S; Morey, Kevin J; Tewari-Singh, Neera; Bowen, Tessa A; Smith, J Jeff; Webb, Colleen T; Hellinga, Homme W; Medford, June I

    2009-01-01

    Signal transduction underlies how living organisms detect and respond to stimuli. A goal of synthetic biology is to rewire natural signal transduction systems. Bacteria, yeast, and plants sense environmental aspects through conserved histidine kinase (HK) signal transduction systems. HK protein components are typically comprised of multiple, relatively modular, and conserved domains. Phosphate transfer between these components may exhibit considerable cross talk between the otherwise apparently linear pathways, thereby establishing networks that integrate multiple signals. We show that sequence conservation and cross talk can extend across kingdoms and can be exploited to produce a synthetic plant signal transduction system. In response to HK cross talk, heterologously expressed bacterial response regulators, PhoB and OmpR, translocate to the nucleus on HK activation. Using this discovery, combined with modification of PhoB (PhoB-VP64), we produced a key component of a eukaryotic synthetic signal transduction pathway. In response to exogenous cytokinin, PhoB-VP64 translocates to the nucleus, binds a synthetic PlantPho promoter, and activates gene expression. These results show that conserved-signaling components can be used across kingdoms and adapted to produce synthetic eukaryotic signal transduction pathways. PMID:19455134

  9. Mapping paths: new approaches to dissect eukaryotic signaling circuitry

    PubMed Central

    Mutlu, Nebibe; Kumar, Anuj

    2016-01-01

    Eukaryotic cells are precisely “wired” to coordinate changes in external and intracellular signals with corresponding adjustments in the output of complex and often interconnected signaling pathways. These pathways are critical in understanding cellular growth and function, and several experimental trends are emerging with applicability toward more fully describing the composition and topology of eukaryotic signaling networks. In particular, recent studies have implemented CRISPR/Cas-based screens in mouse and human cell lines for genes involved in various cell growth and disease phenotypes. Proteomic methods using mass spectrometry have enabled quantitative and dynamic profiling of protein interactions, revealing previously undiscovered complexes and allele-specific protein interactions. Methods for the single-cell study of protein localization and gene expression have been integrated with computational analyses to provide insight into cell signaling in yeast and metazoans. In this review, we present an overview of exemplary studies using the above approaches, relevant for the analysis of cell signaling and indeed, more broadly, for many modern biological applications. PMID:27540473

  10. The binding sites for tRNA on eukaryotic ribosomes.

    PubMed

    Leader, D P; Machray, G C

    1975-07-01

    We have studied the non-enzymic binding of phe-tRNA to ribosomes from rat liver using deacylated tRNA to inhibit binding to the P-site and puromycin (5 x 10-minus3M) to inhibit binding to the A-site. We conclude that at a low concentration of magnesium ions (10mM) phe-tRNA is bound only at the A-site of 80S irbosomes, whereas at a high concentration of magnesium ions (40mM) phe-tRNA is also bound at the P-site. Studies with edeine indicate that, during non-enzymic binding of phe-tRNA, eukaryotic ribosomes (in contrast to prokarotic ribosomes) have the A-site of the 60S subunit and the initiation site of the 40S subunit juxtaposed. This may account for the differences observed, in formation of diphenylalanyl-tRNA and phenylalanyl-puromycin, between phe-tRNA bound non-enzymically to the P-sites of eukaryotic and prokaryotic ribosomes.

  11. The binding sites for tRNA on eukaryotic ribosomes.

    PubMed Central

    Leader, D P; Machray, G C

    1975-01-01

    We have studied the non-enzymic binding of phe-tRNA to ribosomes from rat liver using deacylated tRNA to inhibit binding to the P-site and puromycin (5 x 10-minus3M) to inhibit binding to the A-site. We conclude that at a low concentration of magnesium ions (10mM) phe-tRNA is bound only at the A-site of 80S irbosomes, whereas at a high concentration of magnesium ions (40mM) phe-tRNA is also bound at the P-site. Studies with edeine indicate that, during non-enzymic binding of phe-tRNA, eukaryotic ribosomes (in contrast to prokarotic ribosomes) have the A-site of the 60S subunit and the initiation site of the 40S subunit juxtaposed. This may account for the differences observed, in formation of diphenylalanyl-tRNA and phenylalanyl-puromycin, between phe-tRNA bound non-enzymically to the P-sites of eukaryotic and prokaryotic ribosomes. PMID:1098024

  12. Reprogramming Eukaryotic Translation with Ligand-Responsive Synthetic RNA Switches

    PubMed Central

    Anzalone, Andrew V.; Lin, Annie J.; Zairis, Sakellarios; Rabadan, Raul; Cornish, Virginia W.

    2016-01-01

    Protein synthesis in eukaryotes is regulated by diverse reprogramming mechanisms that expand the coding capacity of individual genes. Here, we exploit one such mechanism termed −1 programmed ribosomal frameshifting (−1 PRF) to engineer ligand-responsive RNA switches that regulate protein expression. First, efficient −1 PRF stimulatory RNA elements were discovered by in vitro selection; then, ligand-responsive switches were constructed by coupling −1 PRF stimulatory elements to RNA aptamers using rational design and in vivo directed evolution. We demonstrate that −1 PRF switches tightly control the relative stoichiometry of two distinct protein outputs from a single mRNA, exhibiting consistent ligand response across whole populations of cells. Furthermore, −1 PRF switches were applied to build single-mRNA logic gates and an apoptosis module in yeast. Together, these results showcase the potential for harnessing translation-reprogramming mechanisms for synthetic biology, and establish −1 PRF switches as powerful RNA tools for controlling protein synthesis in eukaryotes. PMID:26999002

  13. [Use of flow cytometric sorting to assess the diversity of eukaryotic picophytoplankton of lakes].

    PubMed

    Xie, Wei-Wei; Gong, Yi; Wang, Zhi-Wei; Kong, Fan-Xiang; Shi, Xiao-Li

    2013-04-01

    A novel approach based on flow cytometric sorting followed by construction of 18S rRNA clone libraries was used to study the diversity of eukaryotic picophytoplankton of lakes. The composition of eukaryotic picophytoplankton community appeared highly variable in three lakes. Eukaryotic picophytoplankton was dominated by Cryptophyta in the Lake Xuanwu, and was mainly composed of Cryptophyta and Chrysophyta in the Lake Zixia. In the Lake Taihu, four phyla were discovered, including Cryptophyta, Chrysophyta, Bacillariophyta and Chlorophyta. Meanwhile, the diversity of eukaryotic picophytoplankton differed in various lake regions. In the Meiliang Bay, Chrysophyta was the dominant, and the other three phyla were found in the Gonghu Bay. In the central lake, all of those four phyla were discovered, implying this region contained the highest diversity. The canonical correspondence analysis between the diversity of eukaryotic picophytoplankton and environmental factors revealed the concentration of total phosphorus had the highest important impact on the eukaryotic picophytoplankton communities.

  14. Molecular typing of fecal eukaryotic microbiota of human infants and their respective mothers.

    PubMed

    Pandey, Prashant K; Siddharth, Jay; Verma, Pankaj; Bavdekar, Ashish; Patole, Milind S; Shouche, Yogesh S

    2012-06-01

    The micro-eukaryotic diversity from the human gut was investigated using universal primers directed towards 18S rRNA gene, fecal samples being the source of DNA. The subjects in this study included two breast-fed and two formula-milk-fed infants and their mothers. The study revealed that the infants did not seem to harbour any microeukaryotes in their gut. In contrast, there were distinct eukaryotic microbiota present in the mothers. The investigation is the first of its kind in the comparative study of the human feces to reveal the presence of micro-eukaryotic diversity variance in infants and adults from the Indian subcontinent. The micro-eukaryotes encountered during the investigation include known gut colonizers like Blastocystis and some fungi species. Some of these micro-eukaryotes have been speculated to be involved in clinical manifestations of various diseases. The study is an attempt to highlight the importance of micro-eukaryotes in the human gut.

  15. An archaeal origin of eukaryotes supports only two primary domains of life.

    PubMed

    Williams, Tom A; Foster, Peter G; Cox, Cymon J; Embley, T Martin

    2013-12-12

    The discovery of the Archaea and the proposal of the three-domains 'universal' tree, based on ribosomal RNA and core genes mainly involved in protein translation, catalysed new ideas for cellular evolution and eukaryotic origins. However, accumulating evidence suggests that the three-domains tree may be incorrect: evolutionary trees made using newer methods place eukaryotic core genes within the Archaea, supporting hypotheses in which an archaeon participated in eukaryotic origins by founding the host lineage for the mitochondrial endosymbiont. These results provide support for only two primary domains of life--Archaea and Bacteria--because eukaryotes arose through partnership between them.

  16. An Interactive Exercise To Learn Eukaryotic Cell Structure and Organelle Function.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Klionsky, Daniel J.; Tomashek, John J.

    1999-01-01

    Describes a cooperative, interactive problem-solving exercise for studying eukaryotic cell structure and function. Highlights the dynamic aspects of movement through the cell. Contains 15 references. (WRM)

  17. The Origin of Intraspecific Variation of Virulence in an Eukaryotic Immune Suppressive Parasite

    PubMed Central

    Colinet, Dominique; Schmitz, Antonin; Cazes, Dominique; Gatti, Jean-Luc; Poirié, Marylène

    2010-01-01

    Occurrence of intraspecific variation in parasite virulence, a prerequisite for coevolution of hosts and parasites, has largely been reported. However, surprisingly little is known of the molecular bases of this variation in eukaryotic parasites, with the exception of the antigenic variation used by immune-evading parasites of mammals. The present work aims to address this question in immune suppressive eukaryotic parasites. In Leptopilina boulardi, a parasitic wasp of Drosophila melanogaster, well-defined virulent and avirulent strains have been characterized. The success of virulent females is due to a major immune suppressive factor, LbGAP, a RacGAP protein present in the venom and injected into the host at oviposition. Here, we show that an homologous protein, named LbGAPy, is present in the venom of the avirulent strain. We then question whether the difference in virulence between strains originates from qualitative or quantitative differences in LbGAP and LbGAPy proteins. Results show that the recombinant LbGAPy protein has an in vitro GAP activity equivalent to that of recombinant LbGAP and similarly targets Drosophila Rac1 and Rac2 GTPases. In contrast, a much higher level of both mRNA and protein is found in venom-producing tissues of virulent parasitoids. The F1 offspring between virulent and avirulent strains show an intermediate level of LbGAP in their venom but a full success of parasitism. Interestingly, they express almost exclusively the virulent LbGAP allele in venom-producing tissues. Altogether, our results demonstrate that the major virulence factor in the wasp L. boulardi differs only quantitatively between virulent and avirulent strains, and suggest the existence of a threshold effect of this molecule on parasitoid virulence. We propose that regulation of gene expression might be a major mechanism at the origin of intraspecific variation of virulence in immune suppressive eukaryotic parasites. Understanding this variation would improve our

  18. Biological processing of dinuclear ruthenium complexes in eukaryotic cells.

    PubMed

    Li, Xin; Heimann, Kirsten; Dinh, Xuyen Thi; Keene, F Richard; Collins, J Grant

    2016-10-20

    The biological processing - mechanism of cellular uptake, effects on the cytoplasmic and mitochondrial membranes, intracellular sites of localisation and induction of reactive oxygen species - of two dinuclear polypyridylruthenium(ii) complexes has been examined in three eukaryotic cells lines. Flow cytometry was used to determine the uptake of [{Ru(phen)2}2{μ-bb12}](4+) (Rubb12) and [Ru(phen)2(μ-bb7)Ru(tpy)Cl](3+) {Rubb7-Cl, where phen = 1,10-phenanthroline, tpy = 2,2':6',2''-terpyridine and bbn = bis[4(4'-methyl-2,2'-bipyridyl)]-1,n-alkane} in baby hamster kidney (BHK), human embryonic kidney (HEK-293) and liver carcinoma (HepG2) cell lines. The results demonstrated that the major uptake mechanism for Rubb12 and Rubb7-Cl was active transport, although with a significant contribution from carrier-assisted diffusion for Rubb12 and passive diffusion for Rubb7-Cl. Flow cytometry coupled with Annexin V/TO-PRO-3 double-staining was used to compare cell death by membrane damage or apoptosis. Rubb12 induced significant direct membrane damage, particularly with HepG2 cells, while Rubb7-Cl caused considerably less membrane damage but induced greater levels of apoptosis. Confocal microscopy, coupled with JC-1 assays, demonstrated that Rubb12 depolarises the mitochondrial membrane, whereas Rubb7-Cl had a much smaller affect. Cellular localisation experiments indicated that Rubb12 did not accumulate in the mitochondria, whereas significant mitochondrial accumulation was observed for Rubb7-Cl. The effect of Rubb12 and Rubb7-Cl on intracellular superoxide dismutase activity showed that the ruthenium complexes could induce cell death via a reactive oxygen species-mediated pathway. The results of this study demonstrate that Rubb12 predominantly kills eukaryotic cells by damaging the cytoplasmic membrane. As this dinuclear ruthenium complex has been previously shown to exhibit greater toxicity towards bacteria than eukaryotic cells, the results of the present study suggest that

  19. Biological processing of dinuclear ruthenium complexes in eukaryotic cells.

    PubMed

    Li, Xin; Heimann, Kirsten; Dinh, Xuyen Thi; Keene, F Richard; Collins, J Grant

    2016-10-20

    The biological processing - mechanism of cellular uptake, effects on the cytoplasmic and mitochondrial membranes, intracellular sites of localisation and induction of reactive oxygen species - of two dinuclear polypyridylruthenium(ii) complexes has been examined in three eukaryotic cells lines. Flow cytometry was used to determine the uptake of [{Ru(phen)2}2{μ-bb12}](4+) (Rubb12) and [Ru(phen)2(μ-bb7)Ru(tpy)Cl](3+) {Rubb7-Cl, where phen = 1,10-phenanthroline, tpy = 2,2':6',2''-terpyridine and bbn = bis[4(4'-methyl-2,2'-bipyridyl)]-1,n-alkane} in baby hamster kidney (BHK), human embryonic kidney (HEK-293) and liver carcinoma (HepG2) cell lines. The results demonstrated that the major uptake mechanism for Rubb12 and Rubb7-Cl was active transport, although with a significant contribution from carrier-assisted diffusion for Rubb12 and passive diffusion for Rubb7-Cl. Flow cytometry coupled with Annexin V/TO-PRO-3 double-staining was used to compare cell death by membrane damage or apoptosis. Rubb12 induced significant direct membrane damage, particularly with HepG2 cells, while Rubb7-Cl caused considerably less membrane damage but induced greater levels of apoptosis. Confocal microscopy, coupled with JC-1 assays, demonstrated that Rubb12 depolarises the mitochondrial membrane, whereas Rubb7-Cl had a much smaller affect. Cellular localisation experiments indicated that Rubb12 did not accumulate in the mitochondria, whereas significant mitochondrial accumulation was observed for Rubb7-Cl. The effect of Rubb12 and Rubb7-Cl on intracellular superoxide dismutase activity showed that the ruthenium complexes could induce cell death via a reactive oxygen species-mediated pathway. The results of this study demonstrate that Rubb12 predominantly kills eukaryotic cells by damaging the cytoplasmic membrane. As this dinuclear ruthenium complex has been previously shown to exhibit greater toxicity towards bacteria than eukaryotic cells, the results of the present study suggest that

  20. Oxygen as a factor in eukaryote evolution - Some effects of low levels of oxygen on Saccharomyces cerevisiae

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jahnke, L.; Klein, H. P.

    1979-01-01

    A comparative study of the effects of varying levels of oxygen on some of the metabolic functions of the primitive eukaryote, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, has shown that these cells are responsive to very low levels of oxygen: the level of palmitoyl-Co A desaturase was greatly enhanced by only 0.03 vol % oxygen. Similarly, an acetyl-CoA synthetase associated predominantly with anaerobic growth was stimulated by as little as 0.1% oxygen, while an isoenzyme correlated with aerobic growth was maximally active at much higher oxygen levels (greater than 1%). Closely following this latter pattern were three mitochondrial enzymes that attained maximal activity only under atmospheric levels of oxygen.