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Sample records for homeotic gene sex

  1. Setting limits on homeotic gene function: restraint of Sex combs reduced activity by teashirt and other homeotic genes.

    PubMed Central

    Andrew, D J; Horner, M A; Petitt, M G; Smolik, S M; Scott, M P

    1994-01-01

    Each of the homeotic genes of the HOM or HOX complexes is expressed in a limited domain along the anterior-posterior axis. Each homeotic protein directs the formation of characteristic structures, such as wings or ribs. In flies, when a heat shock-inducible homeotic gene is used to produce a homeotic protein in all cells of the embryo, only some cells respond by altering their fates. We have identified genes that limit where the homeotic gene Sex combs reduced (Scr) can affect cell fates in the Drosophila embryo. In the abdominal cuticle Scr is prevented from inducing prothoracic structures by the three bithorax complex (BX-C) homeotic genes. However, two of the BX-C homeotic genes, Ultrabithorax (Ubx) and abdominal-A (abd-A), have no effect on the ability of Scr to direct the formation of salivary glands. Instead, salivary gland induction by Scr is limited in the trunk by the homeotic gene teashirt (tsh) and in the last abdominal segment by the third BX-C gene, Abdominal-B (AbdB). Therefore, spatial restrictions on homeotic gene activity differ between tissues and result both from the regulation of homeotic gene transcription and from restraints on where homeotic proteins can function. Images PMID:7907545

  2. Characterization of the cis-regulatory region of the Drosophila homeotic gene Sex combs reduced

    SciTech Connect

    Gindhart, J.G. Jr.; King, N.A.; Kaufman, T.C.

    1995-02-01

    The Drosophilia homeotic gene Sex combs reduced (Scr) controls the segmental identity of the labial and prothoracic segments in the embryo and adult. It encodes a sequence-specific transcription factor that controls, in concert with other gene products, differentiative pathways of tissues in which Scr is expressed. During embryogenesis, Scr accumulation is observed in a discrete spatiotemporal pattern that includes the labial and prothoracic ectoderm, the subesophageal ganglion of the ventral nerve cord and the visceral mesoderm of the anterior and posterior midgut. Previous analyses have demonstrated that breakpoint mutations located in a 75-kb interval, including the Scr transcription unit and 50 kb of upstream DNA, cause Scr misexpression during development, presumably because these mutations remove Scr cis-regulatory sequences from the proximity of the Scr promoter. To gain a better understanding of the regulatory interactions necessary for the control of Scr transcription during embryogenesis, we have begun a molecular analysis of the Scr regulatory interval. DNA fragments from this 75-kb region were subcloned into P-element vectors containing either an Scr-lacZ or hsp70-lacZ fusion gene, and patterns of reporter gene expression were assayed in transgenic embryos. Several fragments appear to contain Scr regulatory sequences, as they direct reporter gene expression in patterns similar to those normally observed for Scr, whereas other DNA fragments direct Scr reporter gene expression in developmentally interesting but non-Scr-like patterns during embryogenesis. Scr expression in some tissues appears to be controlled by multiple regulatory elements that are separated, in some cases, by more than 20 kb of intervening DNA. This analysis provides an entry point for the study of how Scr transcription is regulated at the molecular level. 60 refs., 7 figs., 1 tab.

  3. Characterization of the Cis-Regulatory Region of the Drosophila Homeotic Gene Sex Combs Reduced

    PubMed Central

    Gindhart-Jr., J. G.; King, A. N.; Kaufman, T. C.

    1995-01-01

    The Drosophila homeotic gene Sex combs reduced (Scr) controls the segmental identity of the labial and prothoracic segments in the embryo and adult. It encodes a sequence-specific transcription factor that controls, in concert with other gene products, differentiative pathways of tissues in which Scr is expressed. During embryogenesis, Scr accumulation is observed in a discrete spatiotemporal pattern that includes the labial and prothoracic ectoderm, the subesophageal ganglion of the ventral nerve cord and the visceral mesoderm of the anterior and posterior midgut. Previous analyses have demonstrated that breakpoint mutations located in a 75-kb interval, including the Scr transcription unit and 50 kb of upstream DNA, cause Scr misexpression during development, presumably because these mutations remove Scr cis-regulatory sequences from the proximity of the Scr promoter. To gain a better understanding of the regulatory interactions necessary for the control of Scr transcription during embryogenesis, we have begun a molecular analysis of the Scr regulatory interval. DNA fragments from this 75-kb region were subcloned into P-element vectors containing either an Scr-lacZ or hsp70-lacZ fusion gene, and patterns of reporter gene expression were assayed in transgenic embryos. Several fragments appear to contain Scr regulatory sequences, as they direct reporter gene expression in patterns similar to those normally observed for Scr, whereas other DNA fragments direct Scr reporter gene expression in developmentally interesting but non-Scr-like patterns during embryogenesis. Scr expression in some tissues appears to be controlled by multiple regulatory elements that are separated, in some cases, by more than 20 kb of intervening DNA. Interestingly, regulatory sequences that direct reporter gene expression in an Scr-like pattern in the anterior and posterior midgut are imbedded in the regulatory region of the segmentation gene fushi tarazu (ftz), which is normally located

  4. Identification of polycomb and trithorax group responsive elements in the regulatory region of the Drosophila homeotic gene Sex combs reduced

    SciTech Connect

    Gindhart, J.G. Jr.; Kaufman, T.C.

    1995-02-01

    The Drosophilia homeotic gene Sex combs reduced (Scr) is necessary for the establishment and maintenance of the morphological identity of the labial and prothoracic segments. In the early embryo, its expression pattern is established through the activity of several gap and segmentation gene products, as well as other transcription factors. Once established, the Polycomb group (Pc-G) and trithorax group (trx-G) gene products maintain the spatial pattern of Scr expression for the remainder of development. We report the identification of DNA fragments in the Scr regulatory region that may be important for its regulation by Polycomb and trithorax group gene products. When DNA fragments containing these regulatory sequences are subcloned into P-element vectors containing a white minigene, transformants containing these constructs exhibit mosaic patterns of pigmentation in the adult eye, indicating that white minigene expression is repressed in a clonally heritable manner. The size of pigmented and nonpigmented clones in the adult eye suggests that the event determining whether a cell in the eye anlagen will express white occurs at least as early as the first larval instar. The amount of white minigene repression is reduced in some Polycomb group mutants, whereas repression is enhanced in flies mutant for a subset of trithorax group loci. The repressor activity of one fragment, normally located in Scr Intron 2, is increased when it is able to homologously pair, a property consistent with genetic data suggesting that Scr exhibits transvection. Another Scr regulatory fragment, normally located 40 kb upstream of the Scr promoter, silences ectopic expression of an Scr-lacZ fusion gene in the embryo and does so in a Polycomb-dependent manner. We propose that the regulatory sequences located within these DNA fragments may normally mediate the regulation of Scr by proteins encoded by members of Polycomb and trithorax group loci. 98 refs., 6 figs., 4 tabs.

  5. The gap gene Krüppel of Rhodnius prolixus is required for segmentation and for repression of the homeotic gene sex comb-reduced.

    PubMed

    Lavore, Andrés; Esponda-Behrens, Natalia; Pagola, Lucía; Rivera-Pomar, Rolando

    2014-03-01

    The establishment of the anterior-posterior segmentation in insects requires the concerted action of a hierarchical gene network. Here, we study the orthologue of Krüppel gap gene in the hemipteran Rhodnius prolixus (Rp-Kr). We characterized its structure, expression pattern and function. The genomic sequence upstream of the Rp-Kr transcriptional unit shows a putative regulatory region conserved in the orthologue genes from Drosophila melanogaster and Tribolium castaneum. Rp-Kr expression is zygotic and it is expressed in the anterior half of the embryo (the posterior half of the egg) during the blastoderm stage and germ band formation; later, during germ band extension, it is expressed in a central domain, from T2 to A3. The Rp-Kr loss of function phenotypes shows disrupted thoracic and abdominal segmentation. Embryos with weak segmentation phenotypes show homeotic transformations, in which an ectopic tibial comb, typical of T1 leg, appears in T2, which correlates with the ectopic expression of Rp-sex-comb reduced in this leg.

  6. An essential role of even-skipped for homeotic gene expression in the Drosophila visceral mesoderm.

    PubMed Central

    Tremml, G; Bienz, M

    1989-01-01

    We have analysed homeotic gene expression in the embryonic visceral mesoderm of segmentation mutants by antibody staining against Ultrabithorax, Antennapedia and Sex combs reduced protein. We found that even-skipped (eve) function is crucially required for homeotic gene expression, whereas most other segmentation mutations have only minor effects on position and/or width of the homeotic expression domains in this germ layer. Analysis of pair-rule double mutants indicates that complete loss of homeotic gene activity in the visceral mesoderm, as observed in amorphic eve mutants, correlates with loss of engrailed (en) expression in the epidermis and loss of segmentation. We suggest that the establishment of parasegment borders, a consequence of eve expression and witnessed by subsequent en expression, is a necessary precondition for homeotic gene expression in the visceral mesoderm. Images PMID:2573527

  7. Cloning of the homeotic Sex combs reduced gene in Drosophila and in situ localization of its transcripts.

    PubMed

    Kuroiwa, A; Kloter, U; Baumgartner, P; Gehring, W J

    1985-12-30

    We have extended our ;chromosomal walk' in the Antennapedia-complex (ANT-C) by isolating overlapping DNA sequences spanning the chromosomal segment between Antennapedia (Antp) and Deformed (Dfd). The transcription units, homeoboxes and M-repeats were mapped within this region. Four transcription units Antp, fushi tarazu (ftz), Sex combs reduced (Scr) and Dfd contain both a homeobox and an M repeat, whereas at least two additional transcription units, x and z, were found to lack these elements. The Scr locus was identified by deletion mapping. It consists of at least two exonic regions separated by a large intron. The homeobox is located in the 3' exon and is 82% homologous to the one in Antp. Scr encodes a major 3.9-kb RNA. A corresponding cDNA clone was used as a probe for in situ hybridization to sections of various embryonic stages. At gastrula stages Scr transcripts accumulate in the posterior head and the anterior thoracic region of the germ band. At later stages a strong accumulation of transcripts is observed in the suboesophageal and the prothoracic ganglion of the ventral nervous system.

  8. An autoregulatory enhancer element of the Drosophila homeotic gene Deformed.

    PubMed

    Bergson, C; McGinnis, W

    1990-12-01

    The stable determination of different anterior-posterior regions of the Drosophila embryo is controlled by the persistent expression of homeotic selector genes. One mechanism that has been proposed to explain the persistent expression of the homeotic gene Deformed is an autoactivation circuit that would be used once Deformed expression had been established by earlier acting patterning genes. Here we show that a large cis-regulatory element mapping approximately 5 kb upstream of the Deformed transcription start has the properties predicted for a Deformed autoregulatory enhancer. This element provides late, spatially localized expression in the epidermal cells of the maxillary and mandibular segments which is wholly dependent upon endogenous Deformed function. In addition, the autoregulatory enhancer can be activated ectopically in embryos and in imaginal disc cells by ectopic expression of Deformed protein. Deletion analysis of the autoregulatory element indicates that it contains compartment specific sub-elements similar to those of other homeotic loci.

  9. Evolving expression patterns of the homeotic gene Scr in insects.

    PubMed

    Passalacqua, Karla D; Hrycaj, Steven; Mahfooz, Najmus; Popadic, Aleksandar

    2010-01-01

    While the mRNA expression patterns of homeotic genes have been examined in numerous arthropod species, data on their protein accumulation is extremely limited. To address this gap, we analyzed the protein expression pattern of the hox gene Sex combs reduced (Scr) in six hemimetabolous insects from four divergent orders (Thysanura, Orthoptera, Dictyoptera and Hemiptera). Our comparative analysis reveals that the original domain of SCR expression was likely confined to the head and then subsequently moved into the prothorax (T1) in winged insect lineages. The data also show a trend toward the posteriorization of the anterior boundary of SCR expression in the head, which starts in the mandibles (Thysanura) and then gradually shifts to the maxillary (Orthoptera) and labial segments (Dictyoptera and Hemiptera), respectively. In Thermobia (firebrat) and Oncopeltus (milkweed bug) we also identify instances where SCR protein is not detected in regions where mRNA is expressed. This finding suggests the presence of a post-transcriptional regulatory mechanism of Scr in these species. Finally, we show that SCR expression in insect T1 legs is highly variable and exhibits divergent patterning even among related species. In addition, signal in the prothoracic legs of more basal insect lineages cannot be associated with any T1 specific features, indicating that the acquisition of SCR in this region preceded any apparent gain of function. Overall, our results show that Scr expression has diverged considerably among hemimetabolous lineages and establish a framework for subsequent analyses to determine its role in the evolution of the insect head and prothorax.

  10. Conservation of floral homeotic gene function between Arabidopsis and antirrhinum.

    PubMed Central

    Irish, V F; Yamamoto, Y T

    1995-01-01

    Several homeotic genes controlling floral development have been isolated in both Antirrhinum and Arabidopsis. Based on the similarities in sequence and in the phenotypes elicited by mutations in some of these genes, it has been proposed that the regulatory hierarchy controlling floral development is comparable in these two species. We have performed a direct experimental test of this hypothesis by introducing a chimeric Antirrhinum Deficiens (DefA)/Arabidopsis APETALA3 (AP3) gene, under the control of the Arabidopsis AP3 promoter, into Arabidopsis. We demonstrated that this transgene is sufficient to partially complement severe mutations at the AP3 locus. In combination with a weak ap3 mutation, this transgene is capable of completely rescuing the mutant phenotype to a fully functional wild-type flower. These observations indicate that despite differences in DNA sequence and expression, DefA coding sequences can compensate for the loss of AP3 gene function. We discuss the implications of these results for the evolution of homeotic gene function in flowering plants. PMID:7580255

  11. Spatial regulation of the Antennapedia and Ultrabithorax homeotic genes during Drosophila early development.

    PubMed Central

    Irish, V F; Martinez-Arias, A; Akam, M

    1989-01-01

    Both maternally supplied products and zygotically acting segmentation genes are required to establish the segment pattern of the Drosophila embryo. These genes are thought to act in part by regulating the expression of the homeotic genes. Products of the maternal and zygotic gap genes are present in the egg prior to blastoderm formation, when the homeotic genes are initially expressed within precisely bounded domains. In order to assess the first regulatory interactions between some of these gap gene products and the homeotic genes, we have examined the spatial distribution of transcripts arising from the homeotic Antp and Ubx genes during early embryogenesis in various mutant backgrounds. Here we show that mutations in both maternally and zygotically acting gap genes differentially affect the initial spatial domains of transcripts arising from each of these homeotic gene promoters. Later in embryogenesis, the patterns of homeotic gene expression change in both the wild-type and mutant cases, suggesting that other regulatory activities come into play. We propose a model in which the initial activation of each homeotic gene promoter depends on a unique combination of gap and pair-rule gene activities. Images PMID:2569971

  12. Deciphering the combinatorial architecture of a Drosophila homeotic gene enhancer

    PubMed Central

    Drewell, Robert A.; Nevarez, Michael J.; Kurata, Jessica S.; Winkler, Lauren N.; Li, Lily; Dresch, Jacqueline M.

    2013-01-01

    Summary In Drosophila, the 330 kb bithorax complex regulates cellular differentiation along the anterio-posterior axis during development in the thorax and abdomen and is comprised of three homeotic genes: Ultrabithorax, abdominal-A, and Abdominal-B. The expression of each of these genes is in turn controlled through interactions between transcription factors and a number of cis-regulatory modules in the neighboring intergenic regions. In this study, we examine how the sequence architecture of transcription factor binding sites mediates the functional activity of one of these cis-regulatory modules. Using computational, mathematical modeling and experimental molecular genetic approaches we investigate the IAB7b enhancer, which regulates Abdominal-B expression specifically in the presumptive seventh and ninth abdominal segments of the early embryo. A cross-species comparison of the IAB7b enhancer reveals an evolutionarily conserved signature motif containing two FUSHI-TARAZU activator transcription factor binding sites. We find that the transcriptional repressors KNIRPS, KRUPPEL and GIANT are able to restrict reporter gene expression to the posterior abdominal segments, using different molecular mechanisms including short-range repression and competitive binding. Additionally, we show the functional importance of the spacing between the two FUSHI-TARAZU binding sites and discuss the potential importance of cooperativity for transcriptional activation. Our results demonstrate that the transcriptional output of the IAB7b cis-regulatory module relies on a complex set of combinatorial inputs mediated by specific transcription factor binding and that the sequence architecture at this enhancer is critical to maintain robust regulatory function. PMID:24514265

  13. Differential DNA sequence recognition is a determinant of specificity in homeotic gene action.

    PubMed Central

    Ekker, S C; von Kessler, D P; Beachy, P A

    1992-01-01

    The homeotic genes of Drosophila encode transcriptional regulatory proteins that specify distinct segment identities. Previous studies have implicated the homeodomain as a major determinant of biological specificity within these proteins, but have not established the physical basis of this specificity. We show here that the homeodomains encoded by the Ultrabithorax and Deformed homeotic genes bind optimally to distinct DNA sequences and have mapped the determinants responsible for differential recognition. We further show that relative transactivation by these two proteins in a simple in vivo system can differ by nearly two orders of magnitude. Such differences in DNA sequence recognition and target activation provide a biochemical basis for at least part of the biological specificity of homeotic gene action. Images PMID:1356765

  14. The Tribolium homeotic gene Abdominal is homologous to abdominal-A of the Drosophila bithorax complex

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stuart, J. J.; Brown, S. J.; Beeman, R. W.; Denell, R. E.; Spooner, B. S. (Principal Investigator)

    1993-01-01

    The Abdominal gene is a member of the single homeotic complex of the beetle, Tribolium castaneum. An integrated developmental genetic and molecular analysis shows that Abdominal is homologous to the abdominal-A gene of the bithorax complex of Drosophila. abdominal-A mutant embryos display strong homeotic transformations of the anterior abdomen (parasegments 7-9) to PS6, whereas developmental commitments in the posterior abdomen depend primarily on Abdominal-B. In beetle embryos lacking Abdominal function, parasegments throughout the abdomen are transformed to PS6. This observation demonstrates the general functional significance of parasegmental expression among insects and shows that the control of determinative decisions in the posterior abdomen by homeotic selector genes has undergone considerable evolutionary modification.

  15. Homeotic Genes and the ABCDE Model for Floral Organ Formation in Wheat

    PubMed Central

    Murai, Koji

    2013-01-01

    Floral organ formation has been the subject of intensive study for over 20 years, particularly in the model dicot species Arabidopsis thaliana. These studies have led to the establishment of a general model for the development of floral organs in higher plants, the so-called ABCDE model, in which floral whorl-specific combinations of class A, B, C, D, or E genes specify floral organ identity. In Arabidopsis, class A, B, C, D, E genes encode MADS-box transcription factors except for the class A gene APETALA2. Mutation of these genes induces floral organ homeosis. In this review, I focus on the roles of these homeotic genes in bread wheat (Triticum aestivum), particularly with respect to the ABCDE model. Pistillody, the homeotic transformation of stamens into pistil-like structures, occurs in cytoplasmic substitution (alloplasmic) wheat lines that have the cytoplasm of the related wild species Aegilops crassa. This phenomenon is a valuable tool for analysis of the wheat ABCDE model. Using an alloplasmic line, the wheat ortholog of DROOPING LEAF (TaDL), a member of the YABBY gene family, has been shown to regulate pistil specification. Here, I describe the current understanding of the ABCDE model for floral organ formation in wheat. PMID:27137382

  16. Head and tail development of the Drosophila embryo involves spalt, a novel homeotic gene

    PubMed Central

    Jürgens, Gerd

    1988-01-01

    Mutations in spalt (sal), a novel homeotic gene on the second chromosome of Drosophila, cause opposite transformations in two subterminal regions of the embryo: posterior head segments are transformed into anterior thoracic structures and anterior tail segments are transformed into posterior abdominal structures. The embryonic phenotypes of double mutants for sal and various Antennapedia (ANT-C) or bithorax (BX-C) genes indicate that sal acts independently of the hierarchical order of the latter gene complexes. Trans-regulatory gene mutations causing ectopic expression of ANT-C and BX-C genes do not change the realms of sal action. It is proposed that the region-specific action of the sal gene primarily promotes head as opposed to trunk development, while the BX-C gene AbdB distinguishes tail from head. Images PMID:16453820

  17. Structural complexity and evolutionary conservation of the Drosophila homeotic gene proboscipedia.

    PubMed Central

    Cribbs, D L; Pultz, M A; Johnson, D; Mazzulla, M; Kaufman, T C

    1992-01-01

    Mutations of the homeotic gene proboscipedia (pb) of Drosophila cause striking transformations of the adult mouthparts, to legs or antennae. We report here an analysis of the gene structure of pb. Coding sequences across a 34 kb interval yield, by alternative splicing, four identified mRNA forms which differ immediately upstream of the homeobox. As a consequence, the homeodomain is expected to reside in four different contexts in the predicted protein isoforms. Mammalian homologs of pb, human HOX-2H and murine Hox-2.8, were identified based on the similarities of their homeodomains (95% identity) and several other conserved motifs. Examination of a collection of pb mutant alleles with antisera directed against the N-terminal region, the center or the C-terminal region of the protein showed that, surprisingly, several partial loss-of-function pb alleles appear to generate partially functional proteins truncated at their C-termini. This suggests that a significant portion of the protein contributes quantitatively to pb function, but is partially dispensable. Finally, evolutionary considerations suggest that pb may be one of several ancient genes which preceded the process yielding the modern homeotic gene complexes. Images PMID:1348688

  18. Developmental and molecular analysis of Deformed; a homeotic gene controlling Drosophila head development

    PubMed Central

    Regulski, Michael; McGinnis, Nadine; Chadwick, Robin; McGinnis, William

    1987-01-01

    The characteristic morphology of many elements of the Drosophila body plan is crucially dependent upon the proper spatial expression of homeotic selector genes. The Deformed locus, which we isolated by virtue of its homology to the homeo box, is a candidate for a homeotic selector in the head region of the developing embryo. Here we show that null mutants of Deformed result in a loss of pattern elements derived from the maxillary and mandibular segments, and a duplication of a cuticular element of the larval head skeleton. Molecular analysis of the locus shows that Dfd transcripts are encoded in five exons distributed over 11 kb. The major transcript of 2.8 kb contains a 1758-bp open reading frame that would translate to yield a 63.5-kd protein containing a homeo domain and conspicuous regions of monotonic amino acid sequences. The Dfd protein exhibits extensive homology to a protein encoded by a Xenopus homeo box gene, Xhox 1A, suggesting that the Xenopus gene is the frog homologue of Dfd. ImagesFig. 1.Fig. 2.Fig. 3.Fig. 5. PMID:16453752

  19. The structure and expression of a hybrid homeotic gene

    PubMed Central

    Rowe, Annie; Akam, Michael

    1988-01-01

    We describe the structure and expression of an exceptional bithorax complex mutation, C1. This deletion mutation removes major portions of both the Ultrabithorax (Ubx) and abdominal-A (abd-A) protein coding regions, yet retains many of the functions normally executed by these genes. We show that the ends of the C1 deletion map to analogous positions within the Ubx and abd-A transcription units, and that the deletion chromosome gives rise to a set of novel fusion transcripts that may encode hybrid abd-A/Ubx proteins. These fusion products are transcribed from the abd-A promoter, but exhibit a novel spatial pattern of expression that combines aspects of the normal Ubx and abd-A distributions. This pattern provides evidence for the existence of regulatory elements located in the 3' region of the Ubx transcription unit that can act on the abd-A promoter at a distance of at least 20 kb. Images PMID:16453833

  20. The role of homeotic genes in determining the segmental pattern of chordotonal organs in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Wong, Darren C C; Merritt, David J

    2002-01-01

    The homeotic genes are instrumental in establishing segment-specific characteristics. In Drosophila embryos there is ample evidence that the homeotic genes are involved in establishing the differences in the pattern of sense organs between segments. The chordotonal organs are compound sense organs made up of several stretch receptive sensilla. A set of serially homologous chordotonal organs, lch3 in the 1st thoracic segment, dch3 in the 2nd and 3rd thoracic segments and lch5 in abdominal segments 1 to 7, is composed of different numbers of sensilla with different positions and orientations. Here we examine this set of sense organs and a companion set, vchA/B and veh1, in the wild type and mutants for Sexcombs reduced, Antennapedia, Ultrabithorax, and abdominal-A, using immunostaining. Mutant phenotypes indicate that Ultrabithorax and abdominal-A in particular influence the formation of these sense organs. Differential expression of abdominal-A and Ultrabithorax within compartments of individual parasegments can precisely modulate the types of sense organs that will arise from a segment.

  1. Interactions of OsMADS1 with Floral Homeotic Genes in Rice Flower Development.

    PubMed

    Hu, Yun; Liang, Wanqi; Yin, Changsong; Yang, Xuelian; Ping, Baozhe; Li, Anxue; Jia, Ru; Chen, Mingjiao; Luo, Zhijing; Cai, Qiang; Zhao, Xiangxiang; Zhang, Dabing; Yuan, Zheng

    2015-09-01

    During reproductive development, rice plants develop unique flower organs which determine the final grain yield. OsMADS1, one of SEPALLATA-like MADS-box genes, has been unraveled to play critical roles in rice floral organ identity specification and floral meristem determinacy. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying interactions of OsMADS1 with other floral homeotic genes in regulating flower development remains largely elusive. In this work, we studied the genetic interactions of OsMADS1 with B-, C-, and D-class genes along with physical interactions among their proteins. We show that the physical and genetic interactions between OsMADS1 and OsMADS3 are essential for floral meristem activity maintenance and organ identity specification; while OsMADS1 physically and genetically interacts with OsMADS58 in regulating floral meristem determinacy and suppressing spikelet meristem reversion. We provided important genetic evidence to support the neofunctionalization of two rice C-class genes (OsMADS3 and OsMADS58) during flower development. Gene expression profiling and quantitative RT-PCR analyses further revealed that OsMADS1 affects the expression of many genes involved in floral identity and hormone signaling, and chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP)-PCR assay further demonstrated that OsMADS17 is a direct target gene of OsMADS1. Taken together, these results reveal that OsMADS1 has diversified regulatory functions in specifying rice floral organ and meristem identity, probably through its genetic and physical interactions with different floral homeotic regulators.

  2. Identification of planarian homeobox sequences indicates the antiquity of most Hox/homeotic gene subclasses.

    PubMed Central

    Balavoine, G; Telford, M J

    1995-01-01

    The homeotic gene complex (HOM-C) is a cluster of genes involved in the anteroposterior axial patterning of animal embryos. It is composed of homeobox genes belonging to the Hox/HOM superclass. Originally discovered in Drosophila, Hox/HOM genes have been identified in organisms as distantly related as arthropods, vertebrates, nematodes, and cnidarians. Data obtained in parallel from the organization of the complex, the domains of gene expression during embryogenesis, and phylogenetic relationships allow the subdivision of the Hox/HOM superclass into five classes (lab, pb/Hox3, Dfd, Antp, and Abd-B) that appeared early during metazoan evolution. We describe a search for homologues of these genes in platyhelminths, triploblast metazoans emerging as an outgroup to the great coelomate ensemble. A degenerate PCR screening for Hox/HOM homeoboxes in three species of triclad planarians has revealed 10 types of Antennapedia-like genes. The homeobox-containing sequences of these PCR fragments allowed the amplification of the homeobox-coding exons for five of these genes in the species Polycelis nigra. A phylogenetic analysis shows that two genes are clear orthologues of Drosophila labial, four others are members of a Dfd/Antp superclass, and a seventh gene, although more difficult to classify with certainty, may be related to the pb/Hox3 class. Together with previously identified Hox/HOM genes in other flatworms, our analyses demonstrate the existence of an elaborate family of Hox/HOM genes in the ancestor of all triploblast animals. Images Fig. 4 PMID:7638172

  3. Regulatory elements of the floral homeotic gene AGAMOUS identified by phylogenetic footprinting and shadowing.

    SciTech Connect

    Hong, R. L., Hamaguchi, L., Busch, M. A., and Weigel, D.

    2003-06-01

    OAK-B135 In Arabidopsis thaliana, cis-regulatory sequences of the floral homeotic gene AGAMOUS (AG) are located in the second intron. This 3 kb intron contains binding sites for two direct activators of AG, LEAFY (LFY) and WUSCHEL (WUS), along with other putative regulatory elements. We have used phylogenetic footprinting and the related technique of phylogenetic shadowing to identify putative cis-regulatory elements in this intron. Among 29 Brassicaceae, several other motifs, but not the LFY and WUS binding sites previously identified, are largely invariant. Using reporter gene analyses, we tested six of these motifs and found that they are all functionally important for activity of AG regulatory sequences in A. thaliana. Although there is little obvious sequence similarity outside the Brassicaceae, the intron from cucumber AG has at least partial activity in A. thaliana. Our studies underscore the value of the comparative approach as a tool that complements gene-by-gene promoter dissection, but also highlight that sequence-based studies alone are insufficient for a complete identification of cis-regulatory sites.

  4. Tracing the Evolution of the Floral Homeotic B- and C-Function Genes through Genome Synteny

    PubMed Central

    Causier, Barry; Castillo, Rosa; Xue, Yongbiao; Schwarz-Sommer, Zsuzsanna; Davies, Brendan

    2010-01-01

    The evolution of the floral homeotic genes has been characterized using phylogenetic and functional studies. It is possible to enhance these studies by comparing gene content and order between species to determine the evolutionary history of the regulatory genes. Here, we use a synteny-based approach to trace the evolution of the floral B- and C-function genes that are required for specification of the reproductive organs. Consistent with previous phylogenetic studies, we show that the euAP3–TM6 split occurred after the monocots and dicots diverged. The Arabidopsis TM6 and papaya euAP3 genes are absent from the respective genomes, and we have detected loci from which these genes were lost. These data indicate that either the TM6 or the euAP3 lineage genes can be lost without detriment to flower development. In contrast, PI is essential for male reproductive organ development; yet, contrary to predictions, complex genomic rearrangements have resulted in almost complete breakdown of synteny at the PI locus. In addition to showing the evolution of B-function genes through the prediction of ancestral loci, similar reconstructions reveal the origins of the C-function AG and PLE lineages in dicots, and show the shared ancestry with the monocot C-function genes. During our studies, we found that transposable elements (TEs) present in sequenced Antirrhinum genomic clones limited comparative studies. A pilot survey of the Antirrhinum data revealed that gene-rich regions contain an unusually high degree of TEs of very varied types, which will be an important consideration for future genome sequencing efforts. PMID:20566474

  5. Regulatory Regions of the Homeotic Gene Proboscipedia Are Sensitive to Chromosomal Pairing

    PubMed Central

    Kapoun, A. M.; Kaufman, T. C.

    1995-01-01

    We have identified regulatory regions of the homeotic gene proboscipedia that are capable of repressing a linked white minigene in a manner that is sensitive to chromosomal pairing. Normally, the eye color of transformants containing white in a P-element vector is affected by the number of copies of the transgene; homozygous flies have darker eyes than heterozygotes. However, we found that flies homozygous for select pb DNA-containing transgenes had lighter eyes than heterozygotes. Several pb DNA fragments are capable of causing this pairing sensitive (PS) negative regulation of white. Two fragments in the upstream DNA of pb, 0.58 and 0.98 kb, are PS; additionally, two PS sites are located in the second intron, including a 0.5-kb region and 49-bp sequence. This phenotype is not observed when two PS sites are located at different chromosomal insertion sites (in trans-heterozygous transgenic animals), indicating that the pb-DNA-mediated repression of white is dependent on the pairing or proximity of the PS regions. The observed phenomenon is similar to transvection in which certain alleles of a gene can complement each other, but only when homologous chromosomes are paired. Interestingly, the intronic PS regions contain positive regulatory sequences for pb, whereas the upstream PS sites contain pb negative regulatory elements. PMID:7498743

  6. Ectopic expression of the HAM59 gene causes homeotic transformations of reproductive organs in sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.).

    PubMed

    Shulga, O A; Neskorodov, Ya B; Shchennikova, A V; Gaponenko, A K; Skryabin, K G

    2015-01-01

    The function of the HAM59 MADS-box gene in sunflower (Helianthus annuus L.) was studied to clarify homeotic C activity in the Asteraceae plant family. For the first time, transgenic sunflower plants with a modified pattern of HAM59 expression were obtained. It was shown that the HAM59 MADS-box transcription factor did mediate C activity in sunflower. In particular, it participated in termination of the floral meristem, repression of the cadastral function of A-activity, and together with other C-type sunflower protein HAM45-in the specification of the identity of stamens and pistils.

  7. Unique morphological changes in plant pathogenic phytoplasma-infected petunia flowers are related to transcriptional regulation of floral homeotic genes in an organ-specific manner.

    PubMed

    Himeno, Misako; Neriya, Yutaro; Minato, Nami; Miura, Chihiro; Sugawara, Kyoko; Ishii, Yoshiko; Yamaji, Yasuyuki; Kakizawa, Shigeyuki; Oshima, Kenro; Namba, Shigetou

    2011-09-01

    Abnormal flowers are often induced by infection of certain plant pathogens, e.g. phytoplasma, but the molecular mechanisms underlying these malformations have remained poorly understood. Here, we show that infection with OY-W phytoplasma (Candidatus Phytoplasma asteris, onion yellows phytoplasma strain, line OY-W) affects the expression of the floral homeotic genes of petunia plants in an organ-specific manner. Upon infection with OY-W phytoplasma, floral morphological changes, including conversion to leaf-like structures, were observed in sepals, petals and pistils, but not in stamens. As the expression levels of homeotic genes differ greatly between floral organs, we examined the expression levels of homeotic genes in each floral organ infected by OY-W phytoplasma, compared with healthy plants. The expression levels of several homeotic genes required for organ development, such as PFG, PhGLO1 and FBP7, were significantly downregulated by the phytoplasma infection in floral organs, except the stamens, suggesting that the unique morphological changes caused by the phytoplasma infection might result from the significant decrease in expression of some crucial homeotic genes. Moreover, the expression levels of TER, ALF and DOT genes, which are known to participate in floral meristem identity, were significantly downregulated in the phytoplasma-infected petunia meristems, implying that phytoplasma would affect an upstream signaling pathway of floral meristem identity. Our results suggest that phytoplasma infection may have complex effects on floral development, resulting in the unique phenotypes that were clearly distinct from the mutant flower phenotypes produced by the knock-out or the overexpression of certain homeotic genes.

  8. Hidden variability of floral homeotic B genes in Solanaceae provides a molecular basis for the evolution of novel functions.

    PubMed

    Geuten, Koen; Irish, Vivian

    2010-08-01

    B-class MADS box genes specify petal and stamen identities in several core eudicot species. Members of the Solanaceae possess duplicate copies of these genes, allowing for diversification of function. To examine the changing roles of such duplicate orthologs, we assessed the functions of B-class genes in Nicotiana benthamiana and tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) using virus-induced gene silencing and RNA interference approaches. Loss of function of individual duplicates can have distinct phenotypes, yet complete loss of B-class gene function results in extreme homeotic transformations of petal and stamen identities. We also show that these duplicate gene products have qualitatively different protein-protein interaction capabilities and different regulatory roles. Thus, compensatory changes in B-class MADS box gene duplicate function have occurred in the Solanaceae, in that individual gene roles are distinct, but their combined functions are equivalent. Furthermore, we show that species-specific differences in the stamen regulatory network are associated with differences in the expression of the microRNA miR169. Whereas there is considerable plasticity in individual B-class MADS box transcription factor function, there is overall conservation in the roles of the multimeric MADS box B-class protein complexes, providing robustness in the specification of petal and stamen identities. Such hidden variability in gene function as we observe for individual B-class genes can provide a molecular basis for the evolution of regulatory functions that result in novel morphologies.

  9. Rice open beak is a negative regulator of class 1 knox genes and a positive regulator of class B floral homeotic gene.

    PubMed

    Horigome, Ayako; Nagasawa, Nobuhiro; Ikeda, Kyoko; Ito, Momoyo; Itoh, Jun-Ichi; Nagato, Yasuo

    2009-06-01

    Numerous genes are involved in the regulation of plant development, including those that regulate floral homeotic genes, We identified two recessive allelic rice mutants, open beak-1 (opb-1) and opb-2, which exhibited pleiotropic defects in leaf morphogenesis, inflorescence architecture, and floral organ identity. Abnormal cell proliferation was observed in the leaves and spikelets, and ectopic or overexpression of several class 1 knox genes was detected; thus, the abnormal cell proliferation in opb mutants is probably caused by ectopic class 1 knox gene expression. The opb mutants also had defects in floral organ identity, resulting in the development of mosaic organs, including gluminous lodicules, staminoid lodicules, and pistiloid stamens. These results, together with the reduced expression of a class B gene, indicate that OPB positively regulates the expression of class B genes. Map-based cloning revealed that OPB encodes a transcription factor that is orthologous to the Arabidopsis JAGGED gene and is expressed in leaf primordia, inflorescence meristem, rachis branch meristems, floral meristem, and floral organ primordia. Taken together, our data suggest that the OPB gene affects cellular proliferation and floral organ identity through the regulation of class 1 knox genes and floral homeotic genes.

  10. The Histone Methyltransferase Gene Absent, Small, or Homeotic Discs-1 Like Is Required for Normal Hox Gene Expression and Fertility in Mice1

    PubMed Central

    Brinkmeier, Michelle L.; Geister, Krista A.; Jones, Morgan; Waqas, Meriam; Maillard, Ivan; Camper, Sally A.

    2015-01-01

    Chromatin remodeling influences gene expression in developing and adult organisms. Active and repressive marks of histone methylation dictate the embryonic expression boundaries of developmentally regulated genes, including the Hox gene cluster. Drosophila ash1 (absent, small or homeotic discs 1) gene encodes a histone methyltransferase essential for regulation of Hox gene expression that interacts genetically with other members of the trithorax group (TrxG). While mammalian members of the mixed lineage leukemia (Mll) family of TrxG genes have roles in regulation of Hox gene expression, little is known about the expression and function of the mammalian ortholog of the Drosophila ash1 gene, Ash1-like (Ash1l). Here we report the expression of mouse Ash1l gene in specific structures within various organs and provide evidence that reduced Ash1l expression has tissue-specific effects on mammalian development and adult homeostasis. Mutants exhibit partially penetrant postnatal lethality and failure to thrive. Surviving mutants have growth insufficiency, skeletal transformations, and infertility associated with developmental defects in both male and female reproductive organs. Specifically, expression of Hoxa11 and Hoxd10 are altered in the epididymis of Ash1l mutant males and Hoxa10 is reduced in the uterus of Ash1l mutant females. In summary, we show that the histone methyltransferase Ash1l is important for the development and function of several tissues and for proper expression of homeotic genes in mammals. PMID:26333994

  11. Murine genes related to the Drosophila AbdB homeotic genes are sequentially expressed during development of the posterior part of the body.

    PubMed Central

    Izpisúa-Belmonte, J C; Falkenstein, H; Dollé, P; Renucci, A; Duboule, D

    1991-01-01

    The cloning, characterization and developmental expression patterns of two novel murine Hox genes, Hox-4.6 and Hox-4.7, are reported. Structural data allow us to classify the four Hox-4 genes located in the most upstream (5') position in the HOX-4 complex as members of a large family of homeogenes related to the Drosophila homeotic gene Abdominal B (AbdB). It therefore appears that these vertebrate genes are derived from a selective amplification of an ancestral gene which gave rise, during evolution, to the most posterior of the insect homeotic genes so far described. In agreement with the structural colinearity, these genes have very posteriorly restricted expression profiles. In addition, their developmental expression is temporally regulated according to a cranio-caudal sequence which parallels the physical ordering of these genes along the chromosome. We discuss the phylogenetic alternative in the evolution of genetic complexity by amplifying either genes or regulatory sequences, as exemplified by this system in the mouse and Drosophila. Furthermore, the possible role of 'temporal colinearity' in the ontogeny of all coelomic (metamerized) metazoans showing a temporal anteroposterior morphogenetic progression is addressed. Images PMID:1676674

  12. Structure of transcripts from the homeotic Antennapedia gene of Drosophila melanogaster: two promoters control the major protein-coding region.

    PubMed Central

    Laughon, A; Boulet, A M; Bermingham, J R; Laymon, R A; Scott, M P

    1986-01-01

    The Antennapedia (Antp) homeotic gene of Drosophila melanogaster regulates segmental identity in the thorax. Loss of Antp function results in altered development of the embryonic thoracic segments or can cause legs to be transformed into antennae. Certain combinations of Antp recessive lethal alleles complement to permit normal development. The structure of the Antp gene, analyzed by sequencing cDNA clones and exons and by transcript mapping, revealed some of the basis for its genetic complexity. It has two promoters governing two nested transcription units, one unit 36 and one 103 kilobase pairs (kb) long. Both units incorporated the same protein-coding exons, all of which are located in the 3'-most 13 kb of the gene. The two promoters resulted in the attachment of either of two long noncoding leader sequences (1.5 and 1.7 kb) to a 1.1-kb open reading frame. Both transcription units used the same pair of alternative polyadenylation sites 1.4 kb apart; the choice of sites was developmentally regulated. Some of the mutations that disrupt the larger transcription unit complemented a mutation affecting the smaller one. Dominant mutations that transform antennae into legs split the gene but left the coding exons intact. The encoded protein has unusually long runs of glutamine and a homeodomain near the C terminus. Images PMID:2879223

  13. Isolation and Functional Analyses of a Putative Floral Homeotic C-Function Gene in a Basal Eudicot London Plane Tree (Platanus acerifolia)

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Guofeng; Bao, Manzhu

    2013-01-01

    The identification of mutants in model plant species has led to the isolation of the floral homeotic function genes that play crucial roles in flower organ specification. However, floral homeotic C-function genes are rarely studied in basal eudicots. Here, we report the isolation and characterization of the AGAMOUS (AG) orthologous gene (PaAG) from a basal eudicot London plane tree (Platanus acerifolia Willd). Phylogenetic analysis showed that PaAG belongs to the C- clade AG group of genes. PaAG was found to be expressed predominantly in the later developmental stages of male and female inflorescences. Ectopic expression of PaAG-1 in tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum) resulted in morphological alterations of the outer two flower whorls, as well as some defects in vegetative growth. Scanning electron micrographs (SEMs) confirmed homeotic sepal-to-carpel transformation in the transgenic plants. Protein interaction assays in yeast cells indicated that PaAG could interact directly with PaAP3 (a B-class MADS-box protein in P. acerifolia), and also PaSEP1 and PaSEP3 (E-class MADS-box proteins in P. acerifolia). This study performed the functional analysis of AG orthologous genes outside core eudicots and monocots. Our findings demonstrate a conserved functional role of AG homolog in London plane tree, which also represent a contribution towards understanding the molecular mechanisms of flower development in this monoecious tree species. PMID:23691041

  14. Characterization of the Antirrhinum floral homeotic MADS-box gene deficiens: evidence for DNA binding and autoregulation of its persistent expression throughout flower development.

    PubMed Central

    Schwarz-Sommer, Z; Hue, I; Huijser, P; Flor, P J; Hansen, R; Tetens, F; Lönnig, W E; Saedler, H; Sommer, H

    1992-01-01

    We have determined the structure of the floral homeotic deficiens (defA) gene whose mutants display sepaloid petals and carpelloid stamens, and have analysed its spatial and temporal expression pattern. In addition, several mutant alleles (morphoalleles) were studied. The results of these analyses define three functional domains of the DEF A protein and identify in the deficiens promoter a possible cis-acting binding site for a transcription factor which specifically upregulates expression of deficiens in petals and stamens. In vitro DNA binding studies show that DEF A binds to specific DNA motifs as a heterodimer, together with the protein product of the floral homeotic globosa gene, thus demonstrating that the protein encoded by deficiens is a DNA binding protein. Furthermore, Northern analysis of a temperature sensitive allele at permissive and non-permissive temperatures provides evidence for autoregulation of the persistent expression of deficiens throughout flower development. A possible mechanism of autoregulation is discussed. Images PMID:1346760

  15. Detection of a true breeding homeotic gene mutant Pps-1 with partially petaloid sepals in opium poppy (Papaver somniferum L.) and its genetic behavior.

    PubMed

    Dhawan, Om Prakash; Dubey, Mukesh Kumar; Khanuja, Suman Preet Singh

    2007-01-01

    A spontaneous true breeding homeotic gene mutant Pps-1 with distinct partial petaloid sepals was detected in the population of downy mildew (DM)-resistant elite accession I-14 during our studies for the identification of disease resistance sources in opium poppy. The trait was found to be stable and inherited truly in the subsequent generations. Genetic studies were carried out through systematic reciprocal crosses with the parental wild-type genotype I-14, and segregation pattern of phenotypic characteristics in F(1) and F(2) populations clearly indicated single recessive nuclear gene control of the mutant character. The studies have demonstrated that the mutant phenotype is due to mutations at the Pps-1 locus that possibly corresponds to B-class function (according to ABC model) with negative control function. The mutant Pps-1 being single-whorl homeotic mutant might greatly help in providing insight into mechanisms of flower development in opium poppy.

  16. Heterotopic expression of class B floral homeotic genes supports a modified ABC model for tulip (Tulipa gesneriana).

    PubMed

    Kanno, Akira; Saeki, Hiroshi; Kameya, Toshiaki; Saedler, Heinz; Theissen, Günter

    2003-07-01

    In higher eudicotyledonous angiosperms the floral organs are typically arranged in four different whorls, containing sepals, petals, stamens and carpels. According to the ABC model, the identity of these organs is specified by floral homeotic genes of class A, A+B, B+C and C, respectively. In contrast to the sepal and petal whorls of eudicots, the perianths of many plants from the Liliaceae family have two outer whorls of almost identical petaloid organs, called tepals. To explain the Liliaceae flower morphology, van Tunen et al. (1993) proposed a modified ABC model, exemplified with tulip. According to this model, class B genes are not only expressed in whorls 2 and 3, but also in whorl 1. Thus the organs of both whorls 1 and 2 express class A plus class B genes and, therefore, get the same petaloid identity. To test this modified ABC model we have cloned and characterized putative class B genes from tulip. Two DEF- and one GLO-like gene were identified, named TGDEFA, TGDEFB and TGGLO. Northern hybridization analysis showed that all of these genes are expressed in whorls 1, 2 and 3 (outer and inner tepals and stamens), thus corroborating the modified ABC model. In addition, these experiments demonstrated that TGGLO is also weakly expressed in carpels, leaves, stems and bracts. Gel retardation assays revealed that TGGLO alone binds to DNA as a homodimer. In contrast, TGDEFA and TGDEFB cannot homodimerize, but make heterodimers with PI. Homodimerization of GLO-like protein has also been reported for lily, suggesting that this phenomenon is conserved within Liliaceae plants or even monocot species.

  17. Cell-type-specific mechanisms of transcriptional repression by the homeotic gene products UBX and ABD-A in Drosophila embryos.

    PubMed Central

    Appel, B; Sakonju, S

    1993-01-01

    The homeotic genes of Drosophila melanogaster, which are required for specification of segmental identities, encode proteins capable of regulating gene expression. We have chosen to study the organization and function of a regulatory target in an attempt to learn how homeotic gene products provide appropriate transcriptional controls. We identified 30 common binding sites for the proteins encoded by the Ultrabithorax (Ubx) and abdominal-A (abd-A) genes within a negatively regulated target, the P2 promoter of the Antennapedia (Antp) gene. By systematically mutagenizing binding sites and observing the resulting P2 expression pattern in embryos, we have found evidence for cell-type-specific interactions that are mediated by these sequences. In certain neuronal cells, UBX and ABD-A proteins appear to repress by competing for common binding sites with another homeodomain protein, which we propose to be ANTP acting to induce P2 transcription in an autoregulatory manner. In sets of cells that contribute to the tracheal system, UBX and ABD-A repress by counteracting the function of a factor acting at independent sites. The latter mechanism of repression requires only that multiple homeodomain binding sequences be present and is not dependent on any particular binding site. Images PMID:8096172

  18. Deficiens, a homeotic gene involved in the control of flower morphogenesis in Antirrhinum majus: the protein shows homology to transcription factors.

    PubMed Central

    Sommer, H; Beltrán, J P; Huijser, P; Pape, H; Lönnig, W E; Saedler, H; Schwarz-Sommer, Z

    1990-01-01

    Deficiens (defA+) is a homeotic gene involved in the genetic control of Antirrhinum majus flower development. Mutation of this gene (defA-1) causes homeotic transformation of petals into sepals and of stamina into carpels in flowers displaying the 'globifera' phenotype, as shown by cross sections and scanning electronmicroscopy of developing flowers. A cDNA derived from the wild type defA+ gene has been cloned by differential screening of a subtracted 'flower specific' cDNA library. The identity of this cDNA with the defA+ gene product has been confirmed by utilizing the somatic and germinal instability of defA-1 mutants. According to Northern blot analyses the defA+ gene is expressed in flowers but not in leaves, and its expression is nearly constant during all stages of flower development. The 1.1 kb long mRNA has a 681 bp long open reading frame that can code for a putative protein of 227 amino acids (mol. wt 26.2 kd). At its N-terminus the DEF A protein reveals homology to a conserved domain of the regulatory proteins SRF (activating c-fos) in mammals and GRM/PRTF (regulating mating type) in yeast. We discuss the structure and the possible function of the DEF A protein in the control of floral organogenesis. Images Fig. 1. Fig. 2. Fig. 3. Fig. 4. PMID:1968830

  19. A novel role for the floral homeotic gene APETALA2 during Arabidopsis fruit development.

    PubMed

    Ripoll, Juan José; Roeder, Adrienne H K; Ditta, Gary S; Yanofsky, Martin F

    2011-12-01

    The majority of the Arabidopsis fruit comprises an ovary with three primary tissue types: the valves, the replum and the valve margins. The valves, which are derived from the ovary walls, are separated along their entire length by the replum. The valve margin, which consists of a separation layer and a lignified layer, forms as a narrow stripe of cells at the valve-replum boundaries. The valve margin identity genes are expressed at the valve-replum boundary and are negatively regulated by FUL and RPL in the valves and replum, respectively. In ful rpl double mutants, the valve margin identity genes become ectopically expressed, and, as a result, the entire outer surface of the ovary takes on valve margin identity. We carried out a genetic screen in this sensitized genetic background and identified a suppressor mutation that restored replum development. Surprisingly, we found that the corresponding suppressor gene was AP2, a gene that is well known for its role in floral organ identity, but whose role in Arabidopsis fruit development had not been previously described. We found that AP2 acts to prevent replum overgrowth by negatively regulating BP and RPL, two genes that normally act to promote replum formation. We also determined that AP2 acts to prevent overgrowth of the valve margin by repressing valve margin identity gene expression. We have incorporated AP2 into the current genetic network controlling fruit development in Arabidopsis.

  20. Two GATA transcription factors are downstream effectors of floral homeotic gene action in Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Mara, Chloe D; Irish, Vivian F

    2008-06-01

    Floral organogenesis is dependent on the combinatorial action of MADS-box transcription factors, which in turn control the expression of suites of genes required for growth, patterning, and differentiation. In Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana), the specification of petal and stamen identity depends on the action of two MADS-box gene products, APETALA3 (AP3) and PISTILLATA (PI). In a screen for genes whose expression was altered in response to the induction of AP3 activity, we identified GNC (GATA, nitrate-inducible, carbon-metabolism-involved) as being negatively regulated by AP3 and PI. The GNC gene encodes a member of the Arabidopsis GATA transcription factor family and has been implicated in the regulation of chlorophyll biosynthesis as well as carbon and nitrogen metabolism. In addition, we found that the GNC paralog, GNL (GNC-like), is also negatively regulated by AP3 and PI. Using chromatin immunoprecipitation, we showed that promoter sequences of both GNC and GNL are bound by PI protein, suggesting a direct regulatory interaction. Analyses of single and double gnc and gnl mutants indicated that the two genes share redundant roles in promoting chlorophyll biosynthesis, suggesting that in repressing GNC and GNL, AP3/PI have roles in negatively regulating this biosynthetic pathway in flowers. In addition, coexpression analyses of genes regulated by AP3, PI, GNC, and GNL indicate a complex regulatory interplay between these transcription factors in regulating a variety of light and nutrient responsive genes. Together, these results provide new insights into the transcriptional cascades controlling the specification of floral organ identities.

  1. The ABCs of flower development: mutational analysis of AP1/FUL-like genes in rice provides evidence for a homeotic (A)-function in grasses.

    PubMed

    Wu, Feng; Shi, Xiaowei; Lin, Xuelei; Liu, Yuan; Chong, Kang; Theißen, Günter; Meng, Zheng

    2017-01-01

    The well-known ABC model describes the combinatorial interaction of homeotic genes in specifying floral organ identities. While the B- and C-functions are highly conserved throughout flowering plants and even in gymnosperms, the A-function, which specifies the identity of perianth organs (sepals and petals in eudicots), remains controversial. One reason for this is that in most plants that have been investigated thus far, with Arabidopsis being a remarkable exception, one does not find recessive mutants in which the identity of both types of perianth organs is affected. Here we report a comprehensive mutational analysis of all four members of the AP1/FUL-like subfamily of MADS-box genes in rice (Oryza sativa). We demonstrate that OsMADS14 and OsMADS15, in addition to their function of specifying meristem identity, are also required to specify palea and lodicule identities. Because these two grass-specific organs are very likely homologous to sepals and petals of eudicots, respectively, we conclude that there is a floral homeotic (A)-function in rice as defined previously. Together with other recent findings, our data suggest that AP1/FUL-like genes were independently recruited to fulfil the (A)-function in grasses and some eudicots, even though other scenarios cannot be excluded and are discussed.

  2. Structure and function of the homeotic gene complex (HOM-C) in the beetle, Tribolium castaneum

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Beeman, R. W.; Stuart, J. J.; Brown, S. J.; Denell, R. E.; Spooner, B. S. (Principal Investigator)

    1993-01-01

    The powerful combination of genetic, developmental and molecular approaches possible with the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, has led to a profound understanding of the genetic control of early developmental events. However, Drosophila is a highly specialized long germ insect, and the mechanisms controlling its early development may not be typical of insects or Arthropods in general. The beetle, Tribolium castaneum, offers a similar opportunity to integrate high resolution genetic analysis with the developmental/molecular approaches currently used in other organisms. Early results document significant differences between insect orders in the functions of genes responsible for establishing developmental commitments.

  3. Structure and function of the homeotic gene complex (HOM-C) in the beetle, Tribolium castaneum.

    PubMed

    Beeman, R W; Stuart, J J; Brown, S J; Denell, R E

    1993-07-01

    The powerful combination of genetic, developmental and molecular approaches possible with the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, has led to a profound understanding of the genetic control of early developmental events. However, Drosophila is a highly specialized long germ insect, and the mechanisms controlling its early development may not be typical of insects or Arthropods in general. The beetle, Tribolium castaneum, offers a similar opportunity to integrate high resolution genetic analysis with the developmental/molecular approaches currently used in other organisms. Early results document significant differences between insect orders in the functions of genes responsible for establishing developmental commitments.

  4. Variation and selection at the CAULIFLOWER floral homeotic gene accompanying the evolution of domesticated Brassica oleracea.

    PubMed Central

    Purugganan, M D; Boyles, A L; Suddith, J I

    2000-01-01

    The evolution of plant morphologies during domestication events provides clues to the origin of crop species and the evolutionary genetics of structural diversification. The CAULIFLOWER gene, a floral regulatory locus, has been implicated in the cauliflower phenotype in both Arabidopsis thaliana and Brassica oleracea. Molecular population genetic analysis indicates that alleles carrying a nonsense mutation in exon 5 of the B. oleracea CAULIFLOWER (BoCAL) gene are segregating in both wild and domesticated B. oleracea subspecies. Alleles carrying this nonsense mutation are nearly fixed in B. oleracea ssp. botrytis (domestic cauliflower) and B. oleracea ssp. italica (broccoli), both of which show evolutionary modifications of inflorescence structures. Tests for selection indicate that the pattern of variation at this locus is consistent with positive selection at BoCAL in these two subspecies. This nonsense polymorphism, however, is also present in both B. oleracea ssp. acephala (kale) and B. oleracea ssp. oleracea (wild cabbage). These results indicate that specific alleles of BoCAL were selected by early farmers during the domestication of modified inflorescence structures in B. oleracea. PMID:10835404

  5. Activation of the Arabidopsis B class homeotic genes by APETALA1.

    PubMed

    Ng, M; Yanofsky, M F

    2001-04-01

    Proper development of petals and stamens in Arabidopsis flowers requires the activities of APETALA3 (AP3) and PISTILLATA (PI), whose transcripts can be detected in the petal and stamen primordia. Localized expression of AP3 and PI requires the activities of at least three genes: APETALA1 (AP1), LEAFY (LFY), and UNUSUAL FLORAL ORGANS (UFO). It has been proposed that UFO provides spatial cues and that LFY specifies competence for AP3 and PI expression in the developing flower. To understand the epistatic relationship among AP1, LFY, and UFO in regulating AP3 and PI expression, we generated two versions of AP1 that have strong transcriptional activation potential. Genetic and molecular analyses of transgenic plants expressing these activated AP1 proteins show that the endogenous AP1 protein acts largely as a transcriptional activator in vivo and that AP1 specifies petals by regulating the spatial domains of AP3 and PI expression through UFO.

  6. The tomato floral homeotic protein FBP1-like gene, SlGLO1, plays key roles in petal and stamen development

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Xuhu; Hu, Zongli; Yin, Wencheng; Yu, Xiaohui; Zhu, Zhiguo; Zhang, Jianling; Chen, Guoping

    2016-01-01

    MADS-box transcription factors play important role in plant growth and development, especially floral organ identities. In our study, a MADS-box gene SlGLO1- tomato floral homeotic protein FBP1-like gene was isolated. Its tissue-specific expression profile analysis showed that SlGLO1 was highly expressed in petals and stamens. RNAi (RNA interference) repression of SlGLO1 resulted in floral organ abnormal phenotypes, including green petals with shorter size, and aberrant carpelloid stamens. SlGLO1-silenced lines are male sterile. Total chlorophyll content was increased and chlorophyll biosynthetic genes were significantly up-regulated in SlGLO1-silenced petals and stamens. Furthermore, B-class genes expression analysis indicated that the repressed function of SlGLO1 led to the enhanced expression of TAP3 and the down-regulation of TPI in the petals and stamens, while the expression of TM6 was reduced in petals and increased in stamens and carpels of SlGLO1-RNAi plants. Additionally, pollen grains of transgenic lines were aberrant and failed to germinate and tomato pollen-specific genes were down-regulated by more than 90% in SlGLO1-silenced lines. These results suggest that SlGLO1 plays important role in regulating plant floral organ and pollen development in tomato. PMID:26842499

  7. Identification of target genes regulated by homeotic proteins in Drosophila melanogaster through genetic selection of Ultrabithorax protein-binding sites in yeast

    SciTech Connect

    Mastick, G.S.; McKay, R.; Oligino, T.

    1995-01-01

    A method based on the transcriptional activation of a selectable reporter in yeast cells was used to identify genes regulated by the Utrabithorax homeoproteins in Drosophila melanogaster. Fifty-three DNA fragments that can mediate activation by UBX isoform Ia in this test were recovered after screening 15% of the Drosophila genome. Half of these fragments represent single-copy sequences in the genome. Six single-copy fragments were investigated in detail, and each was found to reside near a transcription unit whose expression in the embryo is segmentally modulated as expected for targets of homeotic genes. Four of these putative target genes are expressed in patterns that suggest roles in the development of regional specializations within mesoderm derivatives; in three cases these expression patterns depend on Ultrabithorax function. Extrapolation from this pilot study indicates that 85-170 candidate target genes can be identified by screening the entire Drosophila genome with UBX isoform Ia. With appropriate modifications, this approach should be applicable to other transcriptional regulators in diverse organisms. 69 refs., 9 figs., 2 tabs.

  8. Heterotopic expression of B-class floral homeotic genes PISTILLATA/GLOBOSA supports a modified model for crocus (Crocus sativus L.) flower formation.

    PubMed

    Kalivas, Apostolos; Pasentsis, Konstantinos; Polidoros, Alexios N; Tsaftaris, Athanasios S

    2007-04-01

    For uncovering and understanding the molecular mechanisms controlling flower development in cultivated Crocus sativus and particularly the transformation of sepals in outer whorl (whorl 1) tepals, we have cloned and characterized the expression of a family of five PISTILLATA/GLOBOSA-like (PI/GLO-like) MADS-box genes expressed in the C. sativus flower. The deduced amino acid sequences of the coded proteins indicated high homology with members of the MADS-box family of transcription factors, and particularly with other members of the PI/GLO family of MADS-box proteins that control floral organ identity. PI/GLO expression studies in cultivated C. sativus uncover the presence of PI/GLO transcripts not only in the second and third whorls of flower organs as expected, but also in the outer whorl tepals that are the sepals in most typical flowers. This heterotopic expression of both B-class genes: PI/GLO and AP3/DEF, known to form heterodimers for stamens and petals (petaloid inner whor l-whorl 2-tepals in C. sativus), explains the homeotic transformation of sepals into outer whorl tepals in this species. Analysis of PI/GLO sequences from C. sativus for putative targets to known micro-RNAs (miRNAs) showed that the target site for ath-miRNA167 found in Arabidopsis thaliana PI is not present in C. sativus, however, the PI/GLO sequences may be regulated by an ath-miRNA163.

  9. Duplication and diversification in the APETALA1/FRUITFULL floral homeotic gene lineage: implications for the evolution of floral development.

    PubMed Central

    Litt, Amy; Irish, Vivian F

    2003-01-01

    Phylogenetic analyses of angiosperm MADS-box genes suggest that this gene family has undergone multiple duplication events followed by sequence divergence. To determine when such events have taken place and to understand the relationships of particular MADS-box gene lineages, we have identified APETALA1/FRUITFULL-like MADS-box genes from a variety of angiosperm species. Our phylogenetic analyses show two gene clades within the core eudicots, euAP1 (including Arabidopsis APETALA1 and Antirrhinum SQUAMOSA) and euFUL (including Arabidopsis FRUITFULL). Non-core eudicot species have only sequences similar to euFUL genes (FUL-like). The predicted protein products of euFUL and FUL-like genes share a conserved C-terminal motif. In contrast, predicted products of members of the euAP1 gene clade contain a different C terminus that includes an acidic transcription activation domain and a farnesylation signal. Sequence analyses indicate that the euAP1 amino acid motifs may have arisen via a translational frameshift from the euFUL/FUL-like motif. The euAP1 gene clade includes key regulators of floral development that have been implicated in the specification of perianth identity. However, the presence of euAP1 genes only in core eudicots suggests that there may have been changes in mechanisms of floral development that are correlated with the fixation of floral structure seen in this clade. PMID:14573491

  10. Positive selection and ancient duplications in the evolution of class B floral homeotic genes of orchids and grasses

    PubMed Central

    Mondragón-Palomino, Mariana; Hiese, Luisa; Härter, Andrea; Koch, Marcus A; Theißen, Günter

    2009-01-01

    Background Positive selection is recognized as the prevalence of nonsynonymous over synonymous substitutions in a gene. Models of the functional evolution of duplicated genes consider neofunctionalization as key to the retention of paralogues. For instance, duplicate transcription factors are specifically retained in plant and animal genomes and both positive selection and transcriptional divergence appear to have played a role in their diversification. However, the relative impact of these two factors has not been systematically evaluated. Class B MADS-box genes, comprising DEF-like and GLO-like genes, encode developmental transcription factors essential for establishment of perianth and male organ identity in the flowers of angiosperms. Here, we contrast the role of positive selection and the known divergence in expression patterns of genes encoding class B-like MADS-box transcription factors from monocots, with emphasis on the family Orchidaceae and the order Poales. Although in the monocots these two groups are highly diverse and have a strongly canalized floral morphology, there is no information on the role of positive selection in the evolution of their distinctive flower morphologies. Published research shows that in Poales, class B-like genes are expressed in stamens and in lodicules, the perianth organs whose identity might also be specified by class B-like genes, like the identity of the inner tepals of their lily-like relatives. In orchids, however, the number and pattern of expression of class B-like genes have greatly diverged. Results The DEF-like genes from Orchidaceae form four well-supported, ancient clades of orthologues. In contrast, orchid GLO-like genes form a single clade of ancient orthologues and recent paralogues. DEF-like genes from orchid clade 2 (OMADS3-like genes) are under less stringent purifying selection than the other orchid DEF-like and GLO-like genes. In comparison with orchids, purifying selection was less stringent in DEF

  11. The product of the murine homolog of the Drosophila extra sex combs gene displays transcriptional repressor activity.

    PubMed Central

    Denisenko, O N; Bomsztyk, K

    1997-01-01

    The heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoprotein K protein represents a novel class of proteins that may act as docking platforms that orchestrate cross-talk among molecules involved in signal transduction and gene expression. Using a fragment of K protein as bait in the yeast two-hybrid screen, we isolated a cDNA that encodes a protein whose primary structure has extensive similarity to the Drosophila melanogaster extra sex combs (esc) gene product, Esc, a putative silencer of homeotic genes. The cDNA that we isolated is identical to the cDNA of the recently positionally cloned mouse embryonic ectoderm development gene, eed. Like Esc, Eed contains six WD-40 repeats in the C-terminal half of the protein and is thought to repress homeotic gene expression during mouse embryogenesis. Eed binds to K protein through a domain in its N terminus, but interestingly, this domain is not found in the Drosophila Esc. Gal4-Eed fusion protein represses transcription of a reporter gene driven by a promoter that contains Gal4-binding DNA elements. Eed also represses transcription when recruited to a target promoter by Gal4-K protein. Point mutations within the eed gene that are responsible for severe embryonic development abnormalities abolished the transcriptional repressor activity of Eed. Results of this study suggest that Eed-restricted homeotic gene expression during embryogenesis reflects the action of Eed as a transcriptional repressor. The Eed-mediated transcriptional effects are likely to reflect the interaction of Eed with multiple molecular partners, including K protein. PMID:9234727

  12. Reverse homeosis in homeotically reconstructed ribbonworms

    PubMed Central

    Tarpin, Michel; Gehring, Walter J.; Bièrne, Jacques

    1999-01-01

    Homeosis is the replacement of one body part by another, which may be caused by either developmental or genetic variations. It is particularly obvious in segmented animals, like insects, in which one body segment may be transformed into another. However, homeosis also occurs in animals without overt segmentation that also have detailed positional information specifying their body plan. By grafting, we have artificially generated homeotic ribbonworms of the species Lineus ruber with a duplicated ocellar region replacing the postocellar region anterior to the brain. Such chimeric animals are capable of complete morphogenetic regulation of the anterior–posterior (A–P) pattern. The missing postocellar region is restored by intercalary regeneration, and the anterior duplicated ocellar region is eliminated by a process called transgeneration. Thus, homeosis is reversed, and a completely normal pattern along the A–P axis is restored. This reverse homeosis involves the elimination of the syngeneic eyes and the survival of the grafted allogeneic eye region. LsPax-6, the Lineus sanguineus ortholog of the mammalian Pax-6 gene, which is considered to be a master control gene for eye morphogenesis, is expressed specifically in regenerating, regenerated, and intact eye regions. Our data show that ribbonworm eyes are either maintained or they regress according to their position along the A–P axis, even though there are no obvious segmental boundaries. This system allows us to test the function of LsPax-6 protein not only during eye regeneration but also during maintenance and regression of the eyes. PMID:10518548

  13. Environmental sex reversal, Trojan sex genes, and sex ratio adjustment: conditions and population consequences.

    PubMed

    Stelkens, Rike B; Wedekind, Claus

    2010-02-01

    The great diversity of sex determination mechanisms in animals and plants ranges from genetic sex determination (GSD, e.g. mammals, birds, and most dioecious plants) to environmental sex determination (ESD, e.g. many reptiles) and includes a mixture of both, for example when an individual's genetically determined sex is environmentally reversed during ontogeny (ESR, environmental sex reversal, e.g. many fish and amphibia). ESD and ESR can lead to widely varying and unstable population sex ratios. Populations exposed to conditions such as endocrine-active substances or temperature shifts may decline over time due to skewed sex ratios, a scenario that may become increasingly relevant with greater anthropogenic interference on watercourses. Continuous exposure of populations to factors causing ESR could lead to the extinction of genetic sex factors and may render a population dependent on the environmental factors that induce the sex change. However, ESR also presents opportunities for population management, especially if the Y or W chromosome is not, or not severely, degenerated. This seems to be the case in many amphibians and fish. Population growth or decline in such species can potentially be controlled through the introduction of so-called Trojan sex genes carriers, individuals that possess sex chromosomes or genes opposite from what their phenotype predicts. Here, we review the conditions for ESR, its prevalence in natural populations, the resulting physiological and reproductive consequences, and how these may become instrumental for population management.

  14. A deficiency of the homeotic complex of the beetle Tribolium

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stuart, J. J.; Brown, S. J.; Beeman, R. W.; Denell, R. E.; Spooner, B. S. (Principal Investigator)

    1991-01-01

    In Drosophila, the establishment of regional commitments along most of the anterior/posterior axis of the developing embryo depends on two clusters of homeotic genes: the Antennapedia complex (ANT-C) and the bithorax complex (BX-C). The red flour beetle has a single complex (HOM-C) representing the homologues of the ANT-C and BX-C in juxtaposition. Beetles trans-heterozygous for two particular HOM-C mutations spontaneously generate a large deficiency, presumably by an exchange within the common region of two overlapping inversions. Genetic and molecular results indicate that this deficiency spans at least the interval between the Deformed and abdominal-A homologues. In deficiency homozygous embryos, all gnathal, thoracic and abdominal segments develop antennal appendages, suggesting that a gene(s) has been deleted that acts to distinguish trunk from head. There is no evidence that beetles have a homologue of the segmentation gene fushi tarazu of similar genomic location and function. On the basis of the genetic tractability, convenient genome size and organization of Tribolium, and its relatively long phylogenetic divergence from Drosophila (>300 million years), we have integrated developmental genetic and molecular analyses of the HOM-C. We isolated about 70 mutations in the complex representing at least six complementation groups. The homeotic phenotypes of adults and lethal embryos lead us to believe that these beetle genes are homologous with the Drosophila genes indicated in Fig. 1 (see text).

  15. Pipsqueak and GAGA factor act in concert as partners at homeotic and many other loci

    PubMed Central

    Schwendemann, Alexander; Lehmann, Michael

    2002-01-01

    The Drosophila GAGA factor (GAF) controls transcription and other chromosome functions by altering chromatin structure. We found that a second GAGA-binding protein of Drosophila, Pipsqueak (Psq), can directly bind to GAF and is associated with GAF in vivo. Genetic interaction studies provide evidence that Psq and GAF act together in the transcriptional activation and silencing of homeotic genes. A complete colocalization of Psq and GAF on polytene interphase chromosomes and mitotic chromosomes suggests that the two proteins cooperate as general partners not only at homeotic loci, but also at hundreds of other chromosomal sites. PMID:12271134

  16. Distribution of the Sex combs reduced Gene Products in Drosophila melanogaster

    PubMed Central

    Mahaffey, James W.; Kaufman, Thomas C.

    1987-01-01

    The spatial and temporal distribution of RNA and protein encoded by the homeotic Sex combs reduced (Scr) gene were examined during Drosophila development. The gene products are present in the epidermis of both the labial and first thoracic segments as would be predicted from prior genetic studies. However, the pattern in the central nervous system (CNS) and mesoderm is further restricted; the major expression located in the labial neuromere of the CNS and the mesoderm of the first thoracic segment. The spatial restriction within the CNS is correlated with and may be due to a differential timing of expression in the labial and first thoracic ectoderm. The labial ectoderm accumulates the Scr RNA prior to segregation of the neuroblasts while expression in the first thoracic ectoderm occurs after neuroblast segregation. The protein is also observed in the subesophageal ganglia of both larvae and adults, as well as in the labial and first thoracic imaginal discs. Surprisingly, the protein is also present to a lesser extent in second and third thoracic leg discs. PMID:3117618

  17. Homeotic Evolution in the Mammalia: Diversification of Therian Axial Seriation and the Morphogenetic Basis of Human Origins

    PubMed Central

    Filler, Aaron G.

    2007-01-01

    Background Despite the rising interest in homeotic genes, little has been known about the course and pattern of evolution of homeotic traits across the mammalian radiation. An array of emerging and diversifying homeotic gradients revealed by this study appear to generate new body plans and drive evolution at a large scale. Methodology/Principal Findings This study identifies and evaluates a set of homeotic gradients across 250 extant and fossil mammalian species and their antecedents over a period of 220 million years. These traits are generally expressed as co-linear gradients along the body axis rather than as distinct segmental identities. Relative position or occurrence sequence vary independently and are subject to polarity reversal and mirroring. Five major gradient modification sets are identified: (1)–quantitative changes of primary segmental identity pattern that appeared at the origin of the tetrapods ; (2)–frame shift relation of costal and vertebral identity which diversifies from the time of amniote origins; (3)–duplication, mirroring, splitting and diversification of the neomorphic laminar process first commencing at the dawn of mammals; (4)–emergence of homologically variable lumbar lateral processes upon commencement of the radiation of therian mammals and ; (5)–inflexions and transpositions of the relative position of the horizontal septum of the body and the neuraxis at the emergence of various orders of therian mammals. Convergent functional changes under homeotic control include laminar articular engagement with septo-neural transposition and ventrally arrayed lumbar transverse process support systems. Conclusion/Significance Clusters of homeotic transformations mark the emergence point of mammals in the Triassic and the radiation of therians in the Cretaceous. A cluster of homeotic changes in the Miocene hominoid Morotopithecus that are still seen in humans supports establishment of a new “hominiform” clade and suggests a homeotic

  18. Sex chromosomes and sex-determining genes: insights from marsupials and monotremes.

    PubMed

    Pask, A; Graves, J A

    1999-06-01

    Comparative studies of the genes involved in sex determination in the three extant classes of mammals, and other vertebrates, has allowed us to identify genes that are highly conserved in vertebrate sex determination and those that have recently evolved roles in one lineage. Analysis of the conservation and function of candidate genes in different vertebrate groups has been crucial to our understanding of their function and positioning in a conserved vertebrate sex-determining pathway. Here we review comparisons between genes in the sex-determining pathway in different vertebrates, and ask how these comparisons affect our views on the role of each gene in vertebrate sex determination.

  19. CRISPR/Cas9 mediated knockout of the abdominal-A homeotic gene in the global pest, diamondback moth (Plutella xylostella).

    PubMed

    Huang, Yuping; Chen, Yazhou; Zeng, Baosheng; Wang, Yajun; James, Anthony A; Gurr, Geoff M; Yang, Guang; Lin, Xijian; Huang, Yongping; You, Minsheng

    2016-08-01

    The diamondback moth, Plutella xylostella (L.), is a worldwide agricultural pest that has developed resistance to multiple classes of insecticides. Genetics-based approaches show promise as alternative pest management approaches but require functional studies to identify suitable gene targets. Here we use the CRISPR/Cas9 system to target a gene, abdominal-A, which has an important role in determining the identity and functionality of abdominal segments. We report that P. xylostella abdominal-A (Pxabd-A) has two structurally-similar splice isoforms (A and B) that differ only in the length of exon II, with 15 additional nucleotides in isoform A. Pxabd-A transcripts were detected in all developmental stages, and particularly in pupae and adults. CRISPR/Cas9-based mutagenesis of Pxabd-A exon I produced 91% chimeric mutants following injection of 448 eggs. Phenotypes with abnormal prolegs and malformed segments were visible in hatched larvae and unhatched embryos, and various defects were inherited by the next generation (G1). Genotyping of mutants demonstrated several mutations at the Pxabd-A genomic locus. The results indicate that a series of insertions and deletions were induced in the Pxabd-A locus, not only in G0 survivors but also in G1 individuals, and this provides a foundation for genome editing. Our study demonstrates the utility of the CRISPR/Cas9 system for targeting genes in an agricultural pest and therefore provides a foundation the development of novel pest management tools.

  20. Sex-biased gene expression at homomorphic sex chromosomes in emus and its implication for sex chromosome evolution.

    PubMed

    Vicoso, Beatriz; Kaiser, Vera B; Bachtrog, Doris

    2013-04-16

    Sex chromosomes originate from autosomes. The accumulation of sexually antagonistic mutations on protosex chromosomes selects for a loss of recombination and sets in motion the evolutionary processes generating heteromorphic sex chromosomes. Recombination suppression and differentiation are generally viewed as the default path of sex chromosome evolution, and the occurrence of old, homomorphic sex chromosomes, such as those of ratite birds, has remained a mystery. Here, we analyze the genome and transcriptome of emu (Dromaius novaehollandiae) and confirm that most genes on the sex chromosome are shared between the Z and W. Surprisingly, however, levels of gene expression are generally sex-biased for all sex-linked genes relative to autosomes, including those in the pseudoautosomal region, and the male-bias increases after gonad formation. This expression bias suggests that the emu sex chromosomes have become masculinized, even in the absence of ZW differentiation. Thus, birds may have taken different evolutionary solutions to minimize the deleterious effects imposed by sexually antagonistic mutations: some lineages eliminate recombination along the protosex chromosomes to physically restrict sexually antagonistic alleles to one sex, whereas ratites evolved sex-biased expression to confine the product of a sexually antagonistic allele to the sex it benefits. This difference in conflict resolution may explain the preservation of recombining, homomorphic sex chromosomes in other lineages and illustrates the importance of sexually antagonistic mutations driving the evolution of sex chromosomes.

  1. [Elucidation of key genes in sex determination in genetics teaching].

    PubMed

    Li, Meng; He, Zhumei

    2014-06-01

    Sex is an important and complex feature of organisms, which is controlled by the genetic and environmental factors. The genetic factors, i.e., genes, are vital in sex determination. However, not all the related genes play the same roles, and some key genes play a vital role in the sex determination and differentiation. With the development of the modern genetics, a great progress on the key genes has been made in sex determination. In this review, we summarize the mechanism of sex determination and the strategy of how to study the key genes in sex determination. It will help us to understand the mechanism of sex determination better in the teaching of genetics.

  2. A competition mechanism for a homeotic neuron identity transformation in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Gordon, Patricia M; Hobert, Oliver

    2015-07-27

    Neuron identity transformations occur upon removal of specific regulatory factors in many different cellular contexts, thereby revealing the fundamental principle of alternative cell identity choices made during nervous system development. One common molecular interpretation of such homeotic cell identity transformations is that a regulatory factor has a dual function in activating genes defining one cellular identity and repressing genes that define an alternative identity. We provide evidence for an alternative, competition-based mechanism. We show that the MEC-3 LIM homeodomain protein can outcompete the execution of a neuropeptidergic differentiation program by direct interaction with the UNC-86/Brn3 POU homeodomain protein. MEC-3 thereby prevents UNC-86 from collaborating with the Zn finger transcription factor PAG-3/Gfi to induce peptidergic neuron identity and directs UNC-86 to induce an alternative differentiation program toward a glutamatergic neuronal identity. Homeotic control of neuronal identity programs has implications for the evolution of neuronal cell types.

  3. Sex chromosomes and sex-determining genes: insights from marsupials and monotremes.

    PubMed

    Pask, A; Graves, J A

    2001-01-01

    Comparative studies of the genes involved in sex determination in the three extant classes of mammals, and other vertebrates, has allowed us to identify genes that are highly conserved in vertebrate sex determination and those that have recently evolved roles in one lineage. Analysis of the conservation and function of candidate sex determining genes in marsupials and monotremes has been crucial to our understanding of their function and positioning in a conserved mammalian sex-determining pathway, as well as their evolution. Here we review comparisons between genes in the sex-determining pathway in different vertebrates, and ask how these comparisons affect our views on the role of each gene in vertebrate sex determination.

  4. Sex-Specific Selection and Sex-Biased Gene Expression in Humans and Flies.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Changde; Kirkpatrick, Mark

    2016-09-01

    Sexual dimorphism results from sex-biased gene expression, which evolves when selection acts differently on males and females. While there is an intimate connection between sex-biased gene expression and sex-specific selection, few empirical studies have studied this relationship directly. Here we compare the two on a genome-wide scale in humans and flies. We find a distinctive "Twin Peaks" pattern in humans that relates the strength of sex-specific selection, quantified by genetic divergence between male and female adults at autosomal loci, to the degree of sex-biased expression. Genes with intermediate degrees of sex-biased expression show evidence of ongoing sex-specific selection, while genes with either little or completely sex-biased expression do not. This pattern apparently results from differential viability selection in males and females acting in the current generation. The Twin Peaks pattern is also found in Drosophila using a different measure of sex-specific selection acting on fertility. We develop a simple model that successfully recapitulates the Twin Peaks. Our results suggest that many genes with intermediate sex-biased expression experience ongoing sex-specific selection in humans and flies.

  5. Sex-Specific Selection and Sex-Biased Gene Expression in Humans and Flies

    PubMed Central

    Kirkpatrick, Mark

    2016-01-01

    Sexual dimorphism results from sex-biased gene expression, which evolves when selection acts differently on males and females. While there is an intimate connection between sex-biased gene expression and sex-specific selection, few empirical studies have studied this relationship directly. Here we compare the two on a genome-wide scale in humans and flies. We find a distinctive “Twin Peaks” pattern in humans that relates the strength of sex-specific selection, quantified by genetic divergence between male and female adults at autosomal loci, to the degree of sex-biased expression. Genes with intermediate degrees of sex-biased expression show evidence of ongoing sex-specific selection, while genes with either little or completely sex-biased expression do not. This pattern apparently results from differential viability selection in males and females acting in the current generation. The Twin Peaks pattern is also found in Drosophila using a different measure of sex-specific selection acting on fertility. We develop a simple model that successfully recapitulates the Twin Peaks. Our results suggest that many genes with intermediate sex-biased expression experience ongoing sex-specific selection in humans and flies. PMID:27658217

  6. Sex determining genes and sexual differentiation in a marsupial.

    PubMed

    Pask, A; Renfree, M B

    2001-11-01

    The role of genes in the differentiation of the testis and ovary has been extensively studied in the human and the mouse. Despite over a decade of investigations, the precise roles of genes and their interactions in the pathway of sex determination are still unclear. We have chosen to take a comparative look at sex determination and differentiation to gain insights into the evolution and the conserved functions of these genes. To achieve this, we have examined a wide variety of eutherian sex determining genes in a marsupial, the tammar wallaby, to determine which genes have a conserved and fundamental mammalian sex determining role. These investigations have provided many unique insights. Here, we review the recent molecular and endocrine investigations into sexual development in marsupials, and highlight how these studies have shed light on the roles of genes and hormones in mammalian sex determination and differentiation.

  7. Sex-Biased Gene Expression and Sexual Conflict throughout Development

    PubMed Central

    Ingleby, Fiona C.; Flis, Ilona; Morrow, Edward H.

    2015-01-01

    Sex-biased gene expression is likely to account for most sexually dimorphic traits because males and females share much of their genome. When fitness optima differ between sexes for a shared trait, sexual dimorphism can allow each sex to express their optimum trait phenotype, and in this way, the evolution of sex-biased gene expression is one mechanism that could help to resolve intralocus sexual conflict. Genome-wide patterns of sex-biased gene expression have been identified in a number of studies, which we review here. However, very little is known about how sex-biased gene expression relates to sex-specific fitness and about how sex-biased gene expression and conflict vary throughout development or across different genotypes, populations, and environments. We discuss the importance of these neglected areas of research and use data from a small-scale experiment on sex-specific expression of genes throughout development to highlight potentially interesting avenues for future research. PMID:25376837

  8. Sex-specific gene expression in the BXD mouse liver.

    PubMed

    Gatti, Daniel M; Zhao, Ni; Chesler, Elissa J; Bradford, Blair U; Shabalin, Andrey A; Yordanova, Roumyana; Lu, Lu; Rusyn, Ivan

    2010-08-01

    Differences in clinical phenotypes between the sexes are well documented and have their roots in differential gene expression. While sex has a major effect on gene expression, transcription is also influenced by complex interactions between individual genetic variation and environmental stimuli. In this study, we sought to understand how genetic variation affects sex-related differences in liver gene expression by performing genetic mapping of genomewide liver mRNA expression data in a genetically defined population of naive male and female mice from C57BL/6J, DBA/2J, B6D2F1, and 37 C57BL/6J x DBA/2J (BXD) recombinant inbred strains. As expected, we found that many genes important to xenobiotic metabolism and other important pathways exhibit sexually dimorphic expression. We also performed gene expression quantitative trait locus mapping in this panel and report that the most significant loci that appear to regulate a larger number of genes than expected by chance are largely sex independent. Importantly, we found that the degree of correlation within gene expression networks differs substantially between the sexes. Finally, we compare our results to a recently released human liver gene expression data set and report on important similarities in sexually dimorphic liver gene expression between mouse and human. This study enhances our understanding of sex differences at the genome level and between species, as well as increasing our knowledge of the molecular underpinnings of sex differences in responses to xenobiotics.

  9. Vertebrate sex-determining genes play musical chairs.

    PubMed

    Pan, Qiaowei; Anderson, Jennifer; Bertho, Sylvain; Herpin, Amaury; Wilson, Catherine; Postlethwait, John H; Schartl, Manfred; Guiguen, Yann

    2016-01-01

    Sexual reproduction is one of the most highly conserved processes in evolution. However, the genetic and cellular mechanisms making the decision of whether the undifferentiated gonad of animal embryos develops either towards male or female are manifold and quite diverse. In vertebrates, sex-determining mechanisms range from environmental to simple or complex genetic mechanisms and different mechanisms have evolved repeatedly and independently. In species with simple genetic sex-determination, master sex-determining genes lying on sex chromosomes drive the gonadal differentiation process by switching on a developmental program, which ultimately leads to testicular or ovarian differentiation. So far, very few sex-determining genes have been identified in vertebrates and apart from mammals and birds, these genes are apparently not conserved over a larger number of related orders, families, genera, or even species. To fill this knowledge gap and to better explore genetic sex-determination, we propose a strategy (RAD-Sex) that makes use of next-generation sequencing technology to identify genetic markers that define sex-specific segments of the male or female genome.

  10. Population and sex differences in Drosophila melanogaster brain gene expression

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Changes in gene regulation are thought to be crucial for the adaptation of organisms to their environment. Transcriptome analyses can be used to identify candidate genes for ecological adaptation, but can be complicated by variation in gene expression between tissues, sexes, or individuals. Here we use high-throughput RNA sequencing of a single Drosophila melanogaster tissue to detect brain-specific differences in gene expression between the sexes and between two populations, one from the ancestral species range in sub-Saharan Africa and one from the recently colonized species range in Europe. Results Relatively few genes (<100) displayed sexually dimorphic expression in the brain, but there was an enrichment of sex-biased genes, especially male-biased genes, on the X chromosome. Over 340 genes differed in brain expression between flies from the African and European populations, with the inter-population divergence being highly correlated between males and females. The differentially expressed genes included those involved in stress response, olfaction, and detoxification. Expression differences were associated with transposable element insertions at two genes implicated in insecticide resistance (Cyp6g1 and CHKov1). Conclusions Analysis of the brain transcriptome revealed many genes differing in expression between populations that were not detected in previous studies using whole flies. There was little evidence for sex-specific regulatory adaptation in the brain, as most expression differences between populations were observed in both males and females. The enrichment of genes with sexually dimorphic expression on the X chromosome is consistent with dosage compensation mechanisms affecting sex-biased expression in somatic tissues. PMID:23170910

  11. Sex-linked genes and linkage maps in amphibians.

    PubMed

    Sumida, M; Nishioka1, M

    2000-06-01

    This paper reviews sex-linked genes and linkage maps in amphibians. It appears that there is no common ancestral or conserved sex-linkage group in amphibians, whereas an important proportion of other linkage groups has been conserved in amphibians. Comparisons of amphibian linkage maps with those of fishes and mammals reveal several syntenic associations apparently conserved over a very long period of vertebrate divergence.

  12. Sex-specific embryonic gene expression in species with newly evolved sex chromosomes.

    PubMed

    Lott, Susan E; Villalta, Jacqueline E; Zhou, Qi; Bachtrog, Doris; Eisen, Michael B

    2014-02-01

    Sex chromosome dosage differences between females and males are a significant form of natural genetic variation in many species. Like many species with chromosomal sex determination, Drosophila females have two X chromosomes, while males have one X and one Y. Fusions of sex chromosomes with autosomes have occurred along the lineage leading to D. pseudoobscura and D. miranda. The resulting neo-sex chromosomes are gradually evolving the properties of sex chromosomes, and neo-X chromosomes are becoming targets for the molecular mechanisms that compensate for differences in X chromosome dose between sexes. We have previously shown that D. melanogaster possess at least two dosage compensation mechanisms: the well- characterized MSL-mediated dosage compensation active in most somatic tissues, and another system active during early embryogenesis prior to the onset of MSL-mediated dosage compensation. To better understand the developmental constraints on sex chromosome gene expression and evolution, we sequenced mRNA from individual male and female embryos of D. pseudoobscura and D. miranda, from ∼0.5 to 8 hours of development. Autosomal expression levels are highly conserved between these species. But, unlike D. melanogaster, we observe a general lack of dosage compensation in D. pseudoobscura and D. miranda prior to the onset of MSL-mediated dosage compensation. Thus, either there has been a lineage-specific gain or loss in early dosage compensation mechanism(s) or increasing X chromosome dose may strain dosage compensation systems and make them less effective. The extent of female bias on the X chromosomes decreases through developmental time with the establishment of MSL-mediated dosage compensation, but may do so more slowly in D. miranda than D. pseudoobscura. These results also prompt a number of questions about whether species with more sex-linked genes have more sex-specific phenotypes, and how much transcript level variance is tolerable during critical stages

  13. Identification of the sex genes in an early diverged fungus.

    PubMed

    Idnurm, Alexander; Walton, Felicia J; Floyd, Anna; Heitman, Joseph

    2008-01-10

    Sex determination in fungi is controlled by a small, specialized region of the genome in contrast to the large sex-specific chromosomes of animals and some plants. Different gene combinations reside at these mating-type (MAT) loci and confer sexual identity; invariably they encode homeodomain, alpha-box, or high mobility group (HMG)-domain transcription factors. So far, MAT loci have been characterized from a single monophyletic clade of fungi, the Dikarya (the ascomycetes and basidiomycetes), and the ancestral state and evolutionary history of these loci have remained a mystery. Mating in the basal members of the kingdom has been less well studied, and even their precise taxonomic inter-relationships are still obscure. Here we apply bioinformatic and genetic mapping to identify the sex-determining (sex) region in Phycomyces blakesleeanus (Zygomycota), which represents an early branch within the fungi. Each sex allele contains a single gene that encodes an HMG-domain protein, implicating the HMG-domain proteins as an earlier form of fungal MAT loci. Additionally, one allele also contains a copy of a unique, chromosome-specific repetitive element, suggesting a generalized mechanism for the earliest steps in the evolution of sex determination and sex chromosome structure in eukaryotes.

  14. Genomic imprinting and maternal effect genes in haplodiploid sex determination.

    PubMed

    van de Zande, L; Verhulst, E C

    2014-01-01

    The research into the Drosophila melanogaster sex-determining system has been at the basis of all further research on insect sex determination. This further research has made it clear that, for most insect species, the presence of sufficient functional Transformer (TRA) protein in the early embryonic stage is essential for female sexual development. In Hymenoptera, functional analysis of sex determination by knockdown studies of sex-determining genes has only been performed for 2 species. The first is the social insect species Apis mellifera, the honeybee, which has single-locus complementary sex determination (CSD). The other species is the parasitoid Nasonia vitripennis, the jewel wasp. Nasonia has a non-CSD sex-determining system, described as the maternal effect genomic imprinting sex determination system (MEGISD). Here, we describe the arguments that eventually led to the formulation of MEGISD and the experimental data that supported and refined this model. We evaluate the possibility that DNA methylation lies at the basis of MEGISD and briefly address the role of genomic imprinting in non-CSD sex determination in other Hymenoptera.

  15. Sex determination in flowering plants.

    PubMed Central

    Dellaporta, S L; Calderon-Urrea, A

    1993-01-01

    In many ways, plants offer unique systems through which to study sex determination. Because the production of unisexual flowers has evolved independently in many plant species, different and novel mechanisms may be operational. Hence, there is probably not one unifying mechanism that explains sex determination in plants. Advances in our understanding of sex determination will come from the analysis of the genetics, molecular biology, and biochemistry of genes controlling sexual determination in plants. Several excellent model systems for bisexual floral development (Arabidopsis and Antirrhinum), monoecy (maize), and dioecy (Silene, asparagus, and mercury) are available for such analyses. The important questions that remain concern the mechanism of action of sex determination genes and their interrelationship, if any, with homeotic genes that determine the sexual identity of floral organ primordia. At the physiological level, the connection between hormone signaling and sexuality is not well understood, although significant correlations have been discovered. Finally, once the genes that regulate these processes are identified, cloned, and studied, new strategies for the manipulation of sexuality in plants should be forthcoming. PMID:8281039

  16. Identification of sex-specific polymorphic sequences in the goat amelogenin gene for embryo sexing.

    PubMed

    Tsai, T C; Wu, S H; Chen, H L; Tung, Y T; Cheng, W T K; Huang, J C; Chen, C M

    2011-08-01

    Amelogenin (AMEL) is a conserved gene located on the sex chromosomes of mammals. It is involved in the formation of enamel, which is the hard, white material that forms the protective outer layer of each tooth. In this study, we first cloned and determined the intron sequences of the goat AMELX and AMELY genes from female and male ear tissues. The polymorphic AMEL alleles were further analyzed by PCR-based RFLP and Southern blot hybridization analyses. Results showed that intron 5 nucleotide sequences of the goat AMELY gene contains multiple deletions/insertions and shares only 48.5% identity to intron 5 of the goat AMELX gene. Based on the polymorphic AMEL intron sequences, a set of sex-specific triplex primers was designed to PCR amplify a single fragment of 264 bp from the X chromosome of female goats and 2 fragments of 264 and 206 bp from the X and Y chromosomes, respectively, of male goats. An increased sensitivity for sex determination was reached with a single blastomere at the blastula stage isolated from goat embryos. A total of 43 goat embryos were used to estimate a 100% accuracy rate of this method confirmed by chromosomal karyotyping and live births. The embryo sexing technique has been successfully applied in different strains of goats including Alpine, Saanen, Nubian, and Taiwan goats.

  17. Large Scale Gene Expression Meta-Analysis Reveals Tissue-Specific, Sex-Biased Gene Expression in Humans

    PubMed Central

    Mayne, Benjamin T.; Bianco-Miotto, Tina; Buckberry, Sam; Breen, James; Clifton, Vicki; Shoubridge, Cheryl; Roberts, Claire T.

    2016-01-01

    The severity and prevalence of many diseases are known to differ between the sexes. Organ specific sex-biased gene expression may underpin these and other sexually dimorphic traits. To further our understanding of sex differences in transcriptional regulation, we performed meta-analyses of sex biased gene expression in multiple human tissues. We analyzed 22 publicly available human gene expression microarray data sets including over 2500 samples from 15 different tissues and 9 different organs. Briefly, by using an inverse-variance method we determined the effect size difference of gene expression between males and females. We found the greatest sex differences in gene expression in the brain, specifically in the anterior cingulate cortex, (1818 genes), followed by the heart (375 genes), kidney (224 genes), colon (218 genes), and thyroid (163 genes). More interestingly, we found different parts of the brain with varying numbers and identity of sex-biased genes, indicating that specific cortical regions may influence sexually dimorphic traits. The majority of sex-biased genes in other tissues such as the bladder, liver, lungs, and pancreas were on the sex chromosomes or involved in sex hormone production. On average in each tissue, 32% of autosomal genes that were expressed in a sex-biased fashion contained androgen or estrogen hormone response elements. Interestingly, across all tissues, we found approximately two-thirds of autosomal genes that were sex-biased were not under direct influence of sex hormones. To our knowledge this is the largest analysis of sex-biased gene expression in human tissues to date. We identified many sex-biased genes that were not under the direct influence of sex chromosome genes or sex hormones. These may provide targets for future development of sex-specific treatments for diseases. PMID:27790248

  18. Sex-biased expression of sex-differentiating genes FOXL2 and FGF9 in American alligators, alligator Mississippiensis.

    PubMed

    Janes, D E; Elsey, R M; Langan, E M; Valenzuela, N; Edwards, S V

    2013-01-01

    Across amniotes, sex-determining mechanisms exhibit great variation, yet the genes that govern sexual differentiation are largely conserved. Studies of evolution of sex-determining and sex-differentiating genes require an exhaustive characterization of functions of those genes such as FOXL2 and FGF9. FOXL2 is associated with ovarian development, and FGF9 is known to play a role in testicular organogenesis in mammals and other amniotes. As a step toward characterization of the evolutionary history of sexual development, we measured expression of FOXL2 and FGF9 across 3 developmental stages and 8 juvenile tissue types in male and female American alligators, Alligator mississippiensis. We report surprisingly high expression of FOXL2 before the stage of embryonic development when sex is determined in response to temperature, and sustained and variable expression of FGF9 in juvenile male, but not female tissue types. Novel characterization of gene expression in reptiles with temperature-dependent sex determination such as American alligators may inform the evolution of sex-determining and sex-differentiating gene networks, as they suggest alternative functions from which the genes may have been exapted. Future functional profiling of sex-differentiating genes should similarly follow other genes and other species to enable a broad comparison across sex-determining mechanisms.

  19. Homeotic effects, somitogenesis and the evolution of vertebral numbers in recent and fossil amniotes

    PubMed Central

    Müller, Johannes; Scheyer, Torsten M.; Head, Jason J.; Barrett, Paul M.; Werneburg, Ingmar; Ericson, Per G. P.; Pol, Diego; Sánchez-Villagra, Marcelo R.

    2010-01-01

    The development of distinct regions in the amniote vertebral column results from somite formation and Hox gene expression, with the adult morphology displaying remarkable variation among lineages. Mammalian regionalization is reportedly very conservative or even constrained, but there has been no study investigating vertebral count variation across Amniota as a whole, undermining attempts to understand the phylogenetic, ecological, and developmental factors affecting vertebral column variation. Here, we show that the mammalian (synapsid) and reptilian lineages show early in their evolutionary histories clear divergences in axial developmental plasticity, in terms of both regionalization and meristic change, with basal synapsids sharing the conserved axial configuration of crown mammals, and basal reptiles demonstrating the plasticity of extant taxa. We conducted a comprehensive survey of presacral vertebral counts across 436 recent and extinct amniote taxa. Vertebral counts were mapped onto a generalized amniote phylogeny as well as individual ingroup trees, and ancestral states were reconstructed by using squared-change parsimony. We also calculated the relationship between presacral and cervical numbers to infer the relative influence of homeotic effects and meristic changes and found no correlation between somitogenesis and Hox-mediated regionalization. Although conservatism in presacral numbers characterized early synapsid lineages, in some cases reptiles and synapsids exhibit the same developmental innovations in response to similar selective pressures. Conversely, increases in body mass are not coupled with meristic or homeotic changes, but mostly occur in concert with postembryonic somatic growth. Our study highlights the importance of fossils in large-scale investigations of evolutionary developmental processes. PMID:20080660

  20. Untangling the Contributions of Sex-Specific Gene Regulation and X-Chromosome Dosage to Sex-Biased Gene Expression in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Kramer, Maxwell; Rao, Prashant; Ercan, Sevinc

    2016-09-01

    Dosage compensation mechanisms equalize the level of X chromosome expression between sexes. Yet the X chromosome is often enriched for genes exhibiting sex-biased, i.e., imbalanced expression. The relationship between X chromosome dosage compensation and sex-biased gene expression remains largely unexplored. Most studies determine sex-biased gene expression without distinguishing between contributions from X chromosome copy number (dose) and the animal's sex. Here, we uncoupled X chromosome dose from sex-specific gene regulation in Caenorhabditis elegans to determine the effect of each on X expression. In early embryogenesis, when dosage compensation is not yet fully active, X chromosome dose drives the hermaphrodite-biased expression of many X-linked genes, including several genes that were shown to be responsible for hermaphrodite fate. A similar effect is seen in the C. elegans germline, where X chromosome dose contributes to higher hermaphrodite X expression, suggesting that lack of dosage compensation in the germline may have a role in supporting higher expression of X chromosomal genes with female-biased functions in the gonad. In the soma, dosage compensation effectively balances X expression between the sexes. As a result, somatic sex-biased expression is almost entirely due to sex-specific gene regulation. These results suggest that lack of dosage compensation in different tissues and developmental stages allow X chromosome copy number to contribute to sex-biased gene expression and function.

  1. The genomic distribution of sex-biased genes in drosophila serrata: X chromosome demasculinization, feminization, and hyperexpression in both sexes.

    PubMed

    Allen, Scott L; Bonduriansky, Russell; Chenoweth, Stephen F

    2013-01-01

    The chromosomal distribution of genes with sex-biased expression is often nonrandom, and in species with XY sex chromosome systems, it is common to observe a deficit of X-linked male-biased genes and an excess of X-linked female-biased genes. One explanation for this pattern is that sex-specific selection has shaped the gene content of the X. Alternatively, the deficit of male-biased and excess of female-biased genes could be an artifact of differences between the sexes in the global expression level of their X chromosome(s), perhaps brought about by a lack of dosage compensation in males and hyperexpression in females. In the montium fruit fly, Drosophila serrata, both these explanations can account for a deficit of male-biased and excess of female-biased X-linked genes. Using genome-wide expression data from multiple male and female tissues (n = 176 hybridizations), we found that testis- and accessory gland-specific genes are underrepresented whereas female ovary-specific genes are overrepresented on the X chromosome, suggesting that X-linkage is disfavored for male function genes but favored for female function genes. However, genes with such sex-specific functions did not fully account for the deficit of male-biased and excess of female-biased X-linked genes. We did, however, observe sex differences in the global expression level of the X chromosome and autosomes. Surprisingly, and in contrast to other species where a lack of dosage compensation in males is responsible, we found that hyperexpression of X-linked genes in both sexes leads to this imbalance in D. serrata. Our results highlight how common genomic distributions of sex-biased genes, even among closely related species, may arise via quite different evolutionary processes.

  2. Mouse model systems to study sex chromosome genes and behavior: relevance to humans

    PubMed Central

    Cox, Kimberly H.; Bonthuis, Paul J.; Rissman, Emilie F.

    2014-01-01

    Sex chromosome genes directly influence sex differences in behavior. The discovery of the Sry gene on the Y chromosome (Gubbay et al., 1990; Koopman et al., 1990) substantiated the sex chromosome mechanistic link to sex differences. Moreover, the pronounced connection between X chromosome gene mutations and mental illness produces a strong sex bias in these diseases. Yet, the dominant explanation for sex differences continues to be the gonadal hormones. Here we review progress made on behavioral differences in mouse models that uncouple sex chromosome complement from gonadal sex. We conclude that many social and cognitive behaviors are modified by sex chromosome complement, and discuss the implications for human research. Future directions need to include identification of the genes involved and interactions with these genes and gonadal hormones. PMID:24388960

  3. Mouse model systems to study sex chromosome genes and behavior: relevance to humans.

    PubMed

    Cox, Kimberly H; Bonthuis, Paul J; Rissman, Emilie F

    2014-10-01

    Sex chromosome genes directly influence sex differences in behavior. The discovery of the Sry gene on the Y chromosome (Gubbay et al., 1990; Koopman et al., 1990) substantiated the sex chromosome mechanistic link to sex differences. Moreover, the pronounced connection between X chromosome gene mutations and mental illness produces a strong sex bias in these diseases. Yet, the dominant explanation for sex differences continues to be the gonadal hormones. Here we review progress made on behavioral differences in mouse models that uncouple sex chromosome complement from gonadal sex. We conclude that many social and cognitive behaviors are modified by sex chromosome complement, and discuss the implications for human research. Future directions need to include identification of the genes involved and interactions with these genes and gonadal hormones.

  4. The great escape: Active genes on inactive sex chromosomes and their evolutionary implications.

    PubMed

    Sin, Ho-Su; Namekawa, Satoshi H

    2013-09-01

    Epigenetic mechanisms precisely regulate sex chromosome inactivation as well as genes that escape the silencing process. In male germ cells, DNA damage response factor RNF8 establishes active epigenetic modifications on the silent sex chromosomes during meiosis, and activates escape genes during a state of sex chromosome-wide silencing in postmeiotic spermatids. During the course of evolution, the gene content of escape genes in postmeiotic spermatids recently diverged on the sex chromosomes. This evolutionary feature mirrors the epigenetic processes of sex chromosomes in germ cells. In this article, we describe how epigenetic processes have helped to shape the evolution of sex chromosome-linked genes. Furthermore, we compare features of escape genes on sex chromosomes in male germ cells to escape genes located on the single X chromosome silenced during X-inactivation in females, clarifying the distinct evolutionary implications between male and female escape genes.

  5. Disorders of sex development: new genes, new concepts.

    PubMed

    Ono, Makoto; Harley, Vincent R

    2013-02-01

    Formerly known as 'intersex' conditions, disorders of sex development (DSDs) are congenital conditions in which chromosomal, gonadal or anatomical sex is atypical. A complete revision of the nomenclature and classification of DSDs has been undertaken, which emphasizes the genetic aetiology of these disorders and discards pejorative terms. Uptake of the new terminology is widespread. DSDs affecting gonadal development are perhaps the least well understood. Unravelling the molecular mechanisms underlying gonadal development has revealed new causes of DSDs, although a specific molecular diagnosis is made in only ∼20% of patients. Conversely, identification of the molecular causes of DSDs has provided insight into the mechanisms of gonadal development. Studies of N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea mutagenesis in the mouse, and multigene diagnostic screening and genome-wide approaches, such as array-comparative genomic hybridization and next-generation sequencing, in patients with DSDs are accelerating the discovery of genes involved in gonadal development and DSDs. Furthermore, long-range gene regulatory mutations and multiple gene mutations are emerging as new causes of DSDs. Patients with DSDs, their parents and medical staff are confronted with challenging decisions regarding gender assignment, genital surgery and lifelong care. These advances are refining prognostic prediction and systematically improving the diagnosis and long-term management of children with DSDs.

  6. Progress Report for DOE DE-FG03-98ER20317 ''Regulation of the floral homeotic gene AGAMOUS'' Current and Final Funding Period: September 1, 2002, to December 31, 2002

    SciTech Connect

    Weigel, D.

    2003-03-11

    OAK-B135 Results obtained during this funding period: (1) Phylogenetic footprinting of AG regulatory sequences Sequences necessary and sufficient for AGAMOUS (AG) expression in the center of Arabidopsis flowers are located in the second intron, which is about 3 kb in size. This intron contains binding sites for two transcription factors, LEAFY (LFY) and WUSCHEL (WUS), which are direct activators of AG. We used the new method of phylogenetic shadowing to identify new regulatory elements. Among 29 Brassicaceae, several other motifs, but not the LFY and WUS binding sites previously identified, are largely invariant. Using reporter gene analyses, we tested six of these motifs and found that they are all functionally important for activity of AG regulatory sequences in A. thaliana. (2) Repression of AG by MADS box genes A candidate for repressing AG in the shoot apical meristem has been the MADS box gene FUL, since it is expressed in the shoot apical meristem and since an activated version (FUL:VP16) leads to ectopic AG expression in the shoot apical meristem. However, there is no ectopic AG expression in full single mutants. We therefore started to generate VP16 fusions of several other MADS box genes expressed in the shoot apical meristem, to determine which of these might be candidates for FUL redundant genes. We found that AGL6:VP16 has a similar phenotype as FUL:VP16, suggesting that AGL6 and FUL interact. We are now testing this hypothesis. (3) Two candidate AG regulators, WOW and ULA Because the phylogenetic footprinting project has identified several new candidate regulatory motifs, of which at least one (the CCAATCA motif) has rather strong effects, we had decided to put the analysis of WOW and ULA on hold, and to focus on using the newly identified motifs as tools. We conduct ed yeast one-hybrid screen with two of the conserved motifs, and identified several classes of transcription factors that can interact with them. One of these is encoded by the PAN gene

  7. Association testing to detect gene-gene interactions on sex chromosomes in trio data.

    PubMed

    Lee, Yeonok; Ghosh, Debashis; Zhang, Yu

    2013-01-01

    Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) occurs more often among males than females in a 4:1 ratio. Among theories used to explain the causes of ASD, the X chromosome and the Y chromosome theories attribute ASD to the X-linked mutation and the male-limited gene expressions on the Y chromosome, respectively. Despite the rationale of the theory, studies have failed to attribute the sex-biased ratio to the significant linkage or association on the regions of interest on X chromosome. We further study the gender biased ratio by examining the possible interaction effects between two genes in the sex chromosomes. We propose a logistic regression model with mixed effects to detect gene-gene interactions on sex chromosomes. We investigated the power and type I error rates of the approach for a range of minor allele frequencies and varying linkage disequilibrium between markers and QTLs. We also evaluated the robustness of the model to population stratification. We applied the model to a trio-family data set with an ASD affected male child to study gene-gene interactions on sex chromosomes.

  8. Evolution of the Drosophila Feminizing Switch Gene Sex-lethal

    PubMed Central

    Cline, Thomas W.; Dorsett, Maia; Sun, Sha; Harrison, Melissa M.; Dines, Jessica; Sefton, Louise; Megna, Lisa

    2010-01-01

    In Drosophila melanogaster, the gene Sex-lethal (Sxl) controls all aspects of female development. Since melanogaster males lacking Sxl appear wild type, Sxl would seem to be functionally female specific. Nevertheless, in insects as diverse as honeybees and houseflies, Sxl seems not to determine sex or to be functionally female specific. Here we describe three lines of work that address the questions of how, when, and even whether the ancestor of melanogaster Sxl ever shed its non-female-specific functions. First, to test the hypothesis that the birth of Sxl's closest paralog allowed Sxl to lose essential ancestral non-female-specific functions, we determined the CG3056 null phenotype. That phenotype failed to support this hypothesis. Second, to define when Sxl might have lost ancestral non-female-specific functions, we isolated and characterized Sxl mutations in D. virilis, a species distant from melanogaster and notable for the large amount of Sxl protein expression in males. We found no change in Sxl regulation or functioning in the 40+ MY since these two species diverged. Finally, we discovered conserved non-sex-specific Sxl mRNAs containing a previously unknown, potentially translation-initiating exon, and we identified a conserved open reading frame starting in Sxl male-specific exon 3. We conclude that Drosophila Sxl may appear functionally female specific not because it lost non-female-specific functions, but because those functions are nonessential in the laboratory. The potential evolutionary relevance of these nonessential functions is discussed. PMID:20837995

  9. Cloning an expressed gene shared by the human sex chromosomes

    SciTech Connect

    Darling, S.M.; Banting, G.S.; Pym, B.; Wolfe, J.; Goodfellow, P.N.

    1986-01-01

    The existence of genes shared by mammalian sex chromosomes has been predicted on both evolutionary and functional grounds. However, the only experimental evidence for such genes in humans is the cell-surface antigen encoded by loci on the X and Y chromosomes (MIC2X and MIC2Y, respectively), which is recognized by the monoclonal antibody 12E7. Using the bacteriophage lambdagt11 expression system in Escherichia coli and immunoscreening techniques, the authors have isolated a cDNA clone whose primary product is recognized by 12E7. Southern blot analysis using somatic cell hybrids containing only the human X or Y chromosomes shows that the sequences reacting with the cDNA clone are localized to the sex chromosomes. In addition, the clone hybridizes to DNAs isolated from mouse cells that have been transfected with human DNA and selected for 12E7 expression on the fluorescence-activated cell sorter. The authors conclude that the cDNA clone encodes the 12E7 antigen, which is the primary product of the MIC2 loci. The clone was used to explore sequence homology between MIC2X and MIC2Y; these loci are closely related, if not identical.

  10. Sexual dimorphism and the evolution of sex-biased gene expression in the brown alga ectocarpus.

    PubMed

    Lipinska, Agnieszka; Cormier, Alexandre; Luthringer, Rémy; Peters, Akira F; Corre, Erwan; Gachon, Claire M M; Cock, J Mark; Coelho, Susana M

    2015-06-01

    Males and females often have marked phenotypic differences, and the expression of these dissimilarities invariably involves sex differences in gene expression. Sex-biased gene expression has been well characterized in animal species, where a high proportion of the genome may be differentially regulated in males and females during development. Male-biased genes tend to evolve more rapidly than female-biased genes, implying differences in the strength of the selective forces acting on the two sexes. Analyses of sex-biased gene expression have focused on organisms that exhibit separate sexes during the diploid phase of the life cycle (diploid sexual systems), but the genetic nature of the sexual system is expected to influence the evolutionary trajectories of sex-biased genes. We analyze here the patterns of sex-biased gene expression in Ectocarpus, a brown alga with haploid sex determination (dioicy) and a low level of phenotypic sexual dimorphism. In Ectocarpus, female-biased genes were found to be evolving as rapidly as male-biased genes. Moreover, genes expressed at fertility showed faster rates of evolution than genes expressed in immature gametophytes. Both male- and female-biased genes had a greater proportion of sites experiencing positive selection, suggesting that their accelerated evolution is at least partly driven by adaptive evolution. Gene duplication appears to have played a significant role in the generation of sex-biased genes in Ectocarpus, expanding previous models that propose this mechanism for the resolution of sexual antagonism in diploid systems. The patterns of sex-biased gene expression in Ectocarpus are consistent both with predicted characteristics of UV (haploid) sexual systems and with the distinctive aspects of this organism's reproductive biology.

  11. The mouse X chromosome is enriched for sex-biased genes not subject to selection by meiotic sex chromosome inactivation.

    PubMed

    Khil, Pavel P; Smirnova, Natalya A; Romanienko, Peter J; Camerini-Otero, R Daniel

    2004-06-01

    Sex chromosomes are subject to sex-specific selective evolutionary forces. One model predicts that genes with sex-biased expression should be enriched on the X chromosome. In agreement with Rice's hypothesis, spermatogonial genes are over-represented on the X chromosome of mice and sex- and reproduction-related genes are over-represented on the human X chromosome. Male-biased genes are under-represented on the X chromosome in worms and flies, however. Here we show that mouse spermatogenesis genes are relatively under-represented on the X chromosome and female-biased genes are enriched on it. We used Spo11(-/-) mice blocked in spermatogenesis early in meiosis to evaluate the temporal pattern of gene expression in sperm development. Genes expressed before the Spo11 block are enriched on the X chromosome, whereas those expressed later in spermatogenesis are depleted. Inactivation of the X chromosome in male meiosis may be a universal driving force for X-chromosome demasculinization.

  12. Nuclear genes with sex bias in Ruditapes philippinarum (Bivalvia, veneridae): Mitochondrial inheritance and sex determination in DUI species.

    PubMed

    Milani, Liliana; Ghiselli, Fabrizio; Nuzhdin, Sergey V; Passamonti, Marco

    2013-11-01

    Mitochondria are inherited maternally in most metazoans, but in bivalves with Doubly Uniparental Inheritance (DUI) a mitochondrial lineage is transmitted through eggs (F-type), and another through sperm (M-type). In DUI species, a sex-ratio distortion of the progeny was observed: some females produce a female-biased offspring (female-biased family), others a male-biased progeny (male-biased family), and others a 50:50 sex-ratio. A peculiar segregation pattern of M-type mitochondria in DUI organisms appears to be correlated with the sex bias of these families. According to a proposed model for the inheritance of M-type mitochondria in DUI, the transmission of sperm mitochondria is controlled by three nuclear genes, named W, X, and Z. An additional S gene with different dosage effect would be involved in sex determination. In this study, we analyzed structure and localization of three transcripts (psa, birc, and anubl1) with specific sex and family biases in the Manila clam Ruditapes philippinarum. In situ hybridization confirmed the localization of these transcripts in gametogenic cells. In other animals, homologs of these genes are involved in reproduction and ubiquitination. We hypothesized that these genes may have a role in sex determination and could also be responsible for the maintenance/degradation of spermatozoon mitochondria during embryo development of the DUI species R. philippinarum, so that we propose them as candidate factors of the W/X/Z/S system.

  13. Selected Polymorphisms in Sex Hormone-Related Genes, Circulating Sex Hormones and Risk of Endometrial Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Lundin, Eva; Wirgin, Isaac; Lukanova, Annekatrin; Afanasyeva, Yelena; Krogh, Vittorio; Axelsson, Tomas; Hemminki, Kari; Clendenen, Tess V.; Arslan, Alan A.; Ohlson, Nina; Sieri, Sabina; Roy, Nirmal; Koenig, Karen L.; Idahl, Annika; Berrino, Franco; Toniolo, Paolo; Hallmans, Göran; Försti, Asta; Muti, Paola; Lenner, Per; Shore, Roy E.; Zeleniuch-Jacquotte, Anne

    2013-01-01

    Background The role of estrogen and progesterone in the development of endometrial cancer is well documented. Few studies have examined the association of genetic variants in sex hormone-related genes with endometrial cancer risk. Methods We conducted a case-control study nested within three cohorts to examine the association of endometrial cancer risk with polymorphisms in hormone-related genes among 391 cases (92% postmenopausal at diagnosis) and 712 individually-matched controls. We also examined the association of these polymorphisms with circulating levels of sex hormones and SHBG in a cross-sectional analysis including 596 healthy postmenopausal women at blood donation (controls from this nested case-control study and from a nested case-control study of breast cancer in one of the three cohorts). Results Adjusting for endometrial cancer risk factors, the A allele of rs4775936 in CYP19 was significantly associated (ORper allele = 1.22, 95% CI = 1.01–1.47, ptrend = 0.04), while the T allele of rs10046 was marginally associated with increased risk of endometrial cancer (ORper allele = 1.20, 95% CI = 0.99 – 1.45, ptrend = 0.06). PGR rs1042838 was also marginally associated with risk (ORper allele = 1.25, 95% CI = 0.96–1.61, ptrend = 0.09). No significant association was found for the other polymorphisms, i.e. CYP1B1 rs1800440 and rs1056836, UGT1A1 rs8175347, SHBG rs6259 and ESR1 rs2234693. Rs8175347 was significantly associated with postmenopausal levels of estradiol, free estradiol and estrone and rs6259 with SHBG and estradiol. Conclusion Our findings support an association between genetic variants in CYP19, and possibly PGR, and risk of endometrial cancer. PMID:22633539

  14. Sex-specific gonadal and gene expression changes throughout development in fathead minnow

    EPA Science Inventory

    Although fathead minnows (Pimephales promelas) are commonly used as a model fish in endocrine disruption studies, none have characterized sex-specific baseline expression of genes involved in sex differentiation during development in this species. Using a sex-linked DNA marker t...

  15. B-Function Expression in the Flower Center Underlies the Homeotic Phenotype of Lacandonia schismatica (Triuridaceae)[C][W][OA

    PubMed Central

    Álvarez-Buylla, Elena R.; Ambrose, Barbara A.; Flores-Sandoval, Eduardo; Englund, Marie; Garay-Arroyo, Adriana; García-Ponce, Berenice; de la Torre-Bárcena, Eduardo; Espinosa-Matías, Silvia; Martínez, Esteban; Piñeyro-Nelson, Alma; Engström, Peter; Meyerowitz, Elliot M.

    2010-01-01

    Spontaneous homeotic transformations have been described in natural populations of both plants and animals, but little is known about the molecular-genetic mechanisms underlying these processes in plants. In the ABC model of floral organ identity in Arabidopsis thaliana, the B- and C-functions are necessary for stamen morphogenesis, and C alone is required for carpel identity. We provide ABC model-based molecular-genetic evidence that explains the unique inside-out homeotic floral organ arrangement of the monocotyledonous mycoheterotroph species Lacandonia schismatica (Triuridaceae) from Mexico. Whereas a quarter million flowering plant species bear central carpels surrounded by stamens, L. schismatica stamens occur in the center of the flower and are surrounded by carpels. The simplest explanation for this is that the B-function is displaced toward the flower center. Our analyses of the spatio-temporal pattern of B- and C-function gene expression are consistent with this hypothesis. The hypothesis is further supported by conservation between the B-function genes of L. schismatica and Arabidopsis, as the former are able to rescue stamens in Arabidopsis transgenic complementation lines, and Ls-AP3 and Ls-PI are able to interact with each other and with the corresponding Arabidopsis B-function proteins in yeast. Thus, relatively simple molecular modifications may underlie important morphological shifts in natural populations of extant plant taxa. PMID:21119062

  16. Digital transcriptome analysis of putative sex-determination genes in papaya (Carica papaya).

    PubMed

    Urasaki, Naoya; Tarora, Kazuhiko; Shudo, Ayano; Ueno, Hiroki; Tamaki, Moritoshi; Miyagi, Norimichi; Adaniya, Shinichi; Matsumura, Hideo

    2012-01-01

    Papaya (Carica papaya) is a trioecious plant species that has male, female and hermaphrodite flowers on different plants. The primitive sex chromosomes genetically determine the sex of the papaya. Although draft sequences of the papaya genome are already available, the genes for sex determination have not been identified, likely due to the complicated structure of its sex-chromosome sequences. To identify the candidate genes for sex determination, we conducted a transcriptome analysis of flower samples from male, female and hermaphrodite plants using high-throughput SuperSAGE for digital gene expression analysis. Among the short sequence tags obtained from the transcripts, 312 unique tags were specifically mapped to the primitive sex chromosome (X or Y(h)) sequences. An annotation analysis revealed that retroelements are the most abundant sequences observed in the genes corresponding to these tags. The majority of tags on the sex chromosomes were located on the X chromosome, and only 30 tags were commonly mapped to both the X and Y(h) chromosome, implying a loss of many genes on the Y(h) chromosome. Nevertheless, candidate Y(h) chromosome-specific female determination genes, including a MADS-box gene, were identified. Information on these sex chromosome-specific expressed genes will help elucidating sex determination in the papaya.

  17. Sequence and gene content of a large fragment of a lizard sex chromosome and evaluation of candidate sex differentiating gene R-spondin 1

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Scant genomic information from non-avian reptile sex chromosomes is available, and for only a few lizards, several snakes and one turtle species, and it represents only a small fraction of the total sex chromosome sequences in these species. Results We report a 352 kb of contiguous sequence from the sex chromosome of a squamate reptile, Pogona vitticeps, with a ZZ/ZW sex microchromosome system. This contig contains five protein coding genes (oprd1, rcc1, znf91, znf131, znf180), and major families of repetitive sequences with a high number of copies of LTR and non-LTR retrotransposons, including the CR1 and Bov-B LINEs. The two genes, oprd1 and rcc1 are part of a homologous syntenic block, which is conserved among amniotes. While oprd1 and rcc1 have no known function in sex determination or differentiation in amniotes, this homologous syntenic block in mammals and chicken also contains R-spondin 1 (rspo1), the ovarian differentiating gene in mammals. In order to explore the probability that rspo1 is sex determining in dragon lizards, genomic BAC and cDNA clones were mapped using fluorescence in situ hybridisation. Their location on an autosomal microchromosome pair, not on the ZW sex microchromosomes, eliminates rspo1 as a candidate sex determining gene in P. vitticeps. Conclusion Our study has characterized the largest contiguous stretch of physically mapped sex chromosome sequence (352 kb) from a ZZ/ZW lizard species. Although this region represents only a small fraction of the sex chromosomes of P. vitticeps, it has revealed several features typically associated with sex chromosomes including the accumulation of large blocks of repetitive sequences. PMID:24344927

  18. Sex determination in annual fishes: Searching for the master sex-determining gene in Austrolebias charrua (Cyprinodontiformes, Rivulidae)

    PubMed Central

    Arezo, María José; Papa, Nicolás; Guttierrez, Verónica; García, Graciela; Berois, Nibia

    2014-01-01

    Evolution of sex determination and differentiation in fishes involves a broad range of sex strategies (hermaphroditism, gonochorism, unisexuality, environmental and genetic sex determination). Annual fishes inhabit temporary ponds that dry out during the dry season when adults die. The embryos exhibit an atypical developmental pattern and remain buried in the bottom mud until the next rainy season. To elucidate genomic factors involved in the sex determination in annual fish, we explored the presence of a candidate sex-specific gene related to the cascade network in Austrolebias charrua. All phylogenetic analyses showed a high posterior probability of occurrence for a clade integrated by nuclear sequences (aprox. 900 bp) from both adults (male and female), with partial cDNA fragments of A. charrua from juveniles (male) and the dsx D. melanogaster gene. The expressed fragment was detected from blastula to adulthood stages showing a sexually dimorphic expression pattern. The isolated cDNA sequence is clearly related to dsx D. melanogaster gene and might be located near the top of the sex determination cascade in this species. PMID:25071401

  19. Comparative Transcriptome Analysis Reveals Sex-Biased Gene Expression in Juvenile Chinese Mitten Crab Eriocheir sinensis

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Yuan; Hui, Min; Cui, Zhaoxia; Luo, Danli; Song, Chengwen; Li, Yingdong; Liu, Lei

    2015-01-01

    Sex-biased genes are considered to account for most of phenotypic differences between males and females. In order to explore the sex-biased gene expression in crab, we performed the whole-body transcriptome analysis in male and female juveniles of the Chinese mitten crab Eriocheir sinensis using next-generation sequencing technology. Of the 23,349 annotated unigenes, 148 were identified as sex-related genes. A total of 29 candidate genes involved in primary sex determination pathways were detected, indicating the sex determination cascade of the mitten crab might be more complex than previously supposed. Differential expression analysis showed 448 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) between the two transcriptomes. Most of DEGs were involved in processes such as metabolism and immunity, and not associated with obvious sexual function. The pathway predominantly enriched for DEGs were related to lysosome, which might reflect the differences in metabolism between males and females. Of the immune DGEs, 18 up-regulated genes in females were humoral immune factors, and eight up-regulated genes in males were pattern recognition receptors, suggesting sex differences of immune defense might exist in the mitten crab. In addition, two reproduction-related genes, vitellogenin and insulin-like androgenic gland factor, were identified to express in both sexes but with significantly higher level in males. Our research provides the first whole-body RNA sequencing of sex-specific transcriptomes for juvenile E. sinensis and will facilitate further studies on molecular mechanisms of crab sexual dimorphism. PMID:26193085

  20. Comparative Transcriptome Analysis Reveals Sex-Biased Gene Expression in Juvenile Chinese Mitten Crab Eriocheir sinensis.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yuan; Hui, Min; Cui, Zhaoxia; Luo, Danli; Song, Chengwen; Li, Yingdong; Liu, Lei

    2015-01-01

    Sex-biased genes are considered to account for most of phenotypic differences between males and females. In order to explore the sex-biased gene expression in crab, we performed the whole-body transcriptome analysis in male and female juveniles of the Chinese mitten crab Eriocheir sinensis using next-generation sequencing technology. Of the 23,349 annotated unigenes, 148 were identified as sex-related genes. A total of 29 candidate genes involved in primary sex determination pathways were detected, indicating the sex determination cascade of the mitten crab might be more complex than previously supposed. Differential expression analysis showed 448 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) between the two transcriptomes. Most of DEGs were involved in processes such as metabolism and immunity, and not associated with obvious sexual function. The pathway predominantly enriched for DEGs were related to lysosome, which might reflect the differences in metabolism between males and females. Of the immune DGEs, 18 up-regulated genes in females were humoral immune factors, and eight up-regulated genes in males were pattern recognition receptors, suggesting sex differences of immune defense might exist in the mitten crab. In addition, two reproduction-related genes, vitellogenin and insulin-like androgenic gland factor, were identified to express in both sexes but with significantly higher level in males. Our research provides the first whole-body RNA sequencing of sex-specific transcriptomes for juvenile E. sinensis and will facilitate further studies on molecular mechanisms of crab sexual dimorphism.

  1. Analysis of the Tribolium homeotic complex: insights into mechanisms constraining insect Hox clusters

    PubMed Central

    Ronshaugen, Matthew; Cande, Jessica; He, JianPing; Beeman, Richard W.; Levine, Michael; Brown, Susan J.; Denell, Robin E.

    2008-01-01

    The remarkable conservation of Hox clusters is an accepted but little understood principle of biology. Some organizational constraints have been identified for vertebrate Hox clusters, but most of these are thought to be recent innovations that may not apply to other organisms. Ironically, many model organisms have disrupted Hox clusters and may not be well-suited for studies of structural constraints. In contrast, the red flour beetle, Tribolium castaneum, which has a long history in Hox gene research, is thought to have a more ancestral-type Hox cluster organization. Here, we demonstrate that the Tribolium homeotic complex (HOMC) is indeed intact, with the individual Hox genes in the expected colinear arrangement and transcribed from the same strand. There is no evidence that the cluster has been invaded by non-Hox protein-coding genes, although expressed sequence tag and genome tiling data suggest that noncoding transcripts are prevalent. Finally, our analysis of several mutations affecting the Tribolium HOMC suggests that intermingling of enhancer elements with neighboring transcription units may constrain the structure of at least one region of the Tribolium cluster. This work lays a foundation for future studies of the Tribolium HOMC that may provide insights into the reasons for Hox cluster conservation. PMID:18392875

  2. Endogenous hepatic glucocorticoid receptor signaling coordinates sex-biased inflammatory gene expression.

    PubMed

    Quinn, Matthew A; Cidlowski, John A

    2016-02-01

    An individual's sex affects gene expression and many inflammatory diseases present in a sex-biased manner. Glucocorticoid receptors (GRs) are regulators of inflammatory genes, but their role in sex-specific responses is unclear. Our goal was to evaluate whether GR differentially regulates inflammatory gene expression in male and female mouse liver. Twenty-five percent of the 251 genes assayed by nanostring analysis were influenced by sex. Of these baseline sexually dimorphic inflammatory genes, 82% was expressed higher in female liver. Pathway analyses defined pattern-recognition receptors as the most sexually dimorphic pathway. We next exposed male and female mice to the proinflammatory stimulus LPS. Female mice had 177 genes regulated by treatment with LPS, whereas males had 149, with only 66% of LPS-regulated genes common between the sexes. To determine the contribution of GR to sexually dimorphic inflammatory genes we performed nanostring analysis on liver-specific GR knockout (LGRKO) mice in the presence or absence of LPS. Comparing LGRKO to GR(flox/flox) revealed that 36 genes required GR for sexually dimorphic expression, whereas 24 genes became sexually dimorphic in LGRKO. Fifteen percent of LPS-regulated genes in GR(flox/flox) were not regulated in male and female LGRKO mice treated with LPS. Thus, GR action is influenced by sex to regulate inflammatory gene expression.

  3. Sry and SoxE genes: How they participate in mammalian sex determination and gonadal development?

    PubMed

    She, Zhen-Yu; Yang, Wan-Xi

    2017-03-01

    In mammals, sex determination defines the differentiation of the bipotential genital ridge into either testes or ovaries. Sry, the mammalian Y-chromosomal testis-determining gene, is a master regulator of male sex determination. It acts to switch the undifferentiated genital ridge towards testis development, triggering the adoption of a male fate. Sry initiates a cascade of gene networks through the direct regulation of Sox9 expression and promotes supporting cell differentiation, Leydig cell specification, vasculature formation and testis cord development. In the absence of Sry, alternative genetic cascades, including female sex-determining genes RSPO1, Wnt4/β-catenin and Foxl2, are involved in the formation of female genitalia and the maintenance of female ovarian development. The mutual antagonisms between male and female sex-determining pathways are crucial in not just the initiation but also the maintenance of the somatic sex of the gonad throughout the organism's lifetime. Any imbalances in above sex-determining genes can cause disorders of sex development in humans and mice. In this review, we provide a detailed summary of the expression profiles, biochemical properties and developmental functions of Sry and SoxE genes in embryonic testis development and adult gonadal development. We also briefly summarize the dedicate balances between male and female sex-determining genes in mammalian sex development, with particular highlights on the molecular actions of Sry and Sox9 transcription factors.

  4. The seirena B Class Floral Homeotic Mutant of California Poppy (Eschscholzia californica) Reveals a Function of the Enigmatic PI Motif in the Formation of Specific Multimeric MADS Domain Protein Complexes[C][W][OA

    PubMed Central

    Lange, Matthias; Orashakova, Svetlana; Lange, Sabrina; Melzer, Rainer; Theißen, Günter; Smyth, David R.; Becker, Annette

    2013-01-01

    The products of B class floral homeotic genes specify petal and stamen identity, and loss of B function results in homeotic conversions of petals into sepals and stamens into carpels. Here, we describe the molecular characterization of seirena-1 (sei-1), a mutant from the basal eudicot California poppy (Eschscholzia californica) that shows homeotic changes characteristic of floral homeotic B class mutants. SEI has been previously described as EScaGLO, one of four B class–related MADS box genes in California poppy. The C terminus of SEI, including the highly conserved PI motif, is truncated in sei-1 proteins. Nevertheless, like the wild-type SEI protein, the sei-1 mutant protein is able to bind CArG-boxes and can form homodimers, heterodimers, and several higher order complexes with other MADS domain proteins. However, unlike the wild type, the mutant protein is not able to mediate higher order complexes consisting of specific B, C, and putative E class related proteins likely involved in specifying stamen identity. Within the PI motif, five highly conserved N-terminal amino acids are specifically required for this interaction. Several families lack this short conserved sequence, including the Brassicaceae, and we propose an evolutionary scenario to explain these functional differences. PMID:23444328

  5. Recent gene-capture on the UV sex chromosomes of the moss Ceratodon purpureus.

    PubMed

    McDaniel, Stuart F; Neubig, Kurt M; Payton, Adam C; Quatrano, Ralph S; Cove, David J

    2013-10-01

    Sex chromosomes evolve from ordinary autosomes through the expansion and subsequent degeneration of a region of suppressed recombination that is inherited through one sex. Here we investigate the relative timing of these processes in the UV sex chromosomes of the moss Ceratodon purpureus using molecular population genetic analyses of eight newly discovered sex-linked loci. In this system, recombination is suppressed on both the female-transmitted (U) sex chromosome and the male-transmitted (V) chromosome. Genes on both chromosomes therefore should show the deleterious effects of suppressed recombination and sex-limited transmission, while purifying selection should maintain homologs of genes essential for both sexes on both sex chromosomes. Based on analyses of eight sex-linked loci, we show that the nonrecombining portions of the U and V chromosomes expanded in at least two events (~0.6-1.3 MYA and ~2.8-3.5 MYA), after the divergence of C. purpureus from its dioecious sister species, Trichodon cylindricus and Cheilothela chloropus. Both U- and V-linked copies showed reduced nucleotide diversity and limited population structure, compared to autosomal loci, suggesting that the sex chromosomes experienced more recent selective sweeps that the autosomes. Collectively these results highlight the dynamic nature of gene composition and molecular evolution on nonrecombining portions of the U and V sex chromosomes.

  6. Sex Biased Gene Expression Profiling of Human Brains at Major Developmental Stages.

    PubMed

    Shi, Lei; Zhang, Zhe; Su, Bing

    2016-02-16

    There are many differences in brain structure and function between males and females. However, how these differences were manifested during development and maintained through adulthood are still unclear. Here we present a time series analyses of genome-wide transcription profiles of the human brain, and we identified genes showing sex biased expression at major developmental stages (prenatal time, early childhood, puberty time and adulthood). We observed a great number of genes (>2,000 genes) showing between-sex expression divergence at all developmental stages with the greatest number (4,164 genes) at puberty time. However, there are little overlap of sex-biased genes among the major developmental stages, an indication of dynamic expression regulation of the sex-biased genes in the brain during development. Notably, the male biased genes are highly enriched for genes involved in neurological and psychiatric disorders like schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, Alzheimer's disease and autism, while no such pattern was seen for the female-biased genes, suggesting that the differences in brain disorder susceptibility between males and females are likely rooted from the sex-biased gene expression regulation during brain development. Collectively, these analyses reveal an important role of sex biased genes in brain development and neurodevelopmental disorders.

  7. Sex and the Single Cell. I. on the Action of Major Loci Affecting Sex Determination in DROSOPHILA MELANOGASTER

    PubMed Central

    Baker, Bruce S.; Ridge, Kimberly A.

    1980-01-01

    major regulatory loci that control the batteries of genes necessary for the development of many, and perhaps all, secondary sexual characteristics.—The striking similarities between the properties of these loci and those of the homeotic loci that determine segmental and subsegmental specialization during development suggest that the basic mechanisms of regulation are the same in the two situations. The phenotypes and interactions of these sex-determination mutants provide the basis for the model of how the wild-type alleles of these loci act together to effect normal sex determination. Implications of these observations for the function of other homeotic loci are discussed. PMID:6771185

  8. Temperature, Genes, and Sex: a Comparative View of Sex Determination in Trachemys scripta and Mus musculus

    PubMed Central

    Yao, Humphrey H-C; Capel, Blanche

    2014-01-01

    Sex determination, the step at which differentiation of males and females is initiated in the embryo, is of central importance to the propagation of species. There is a remarkable diversity of mechanisms by which sex determination is accomplished. In general these mechanisms fall into two categories: Genetic Sex Determination (GSD), which depends on genetic differences between the sexes, and Environmental Sex Determination (ESD), which depends on extrinsic cues. In this review we will consider these two means of determining sex with particular emphasis on two species: a species that depends on GSD, Mus musculus, and a species that depends on ESD, Trachemys scripta. Because the structural organization of the adult testis and ovary is very similar across vertebrates, most biologists had expected that the pathways downstream of the sex-determining switch would be conserved. However, emerging data indicate that not only are the initial sex determining mechanisms different, but the downstream pathways and morphogenetic events leading to the development of a testis or ovary also are different. PMID:16046442

  9. The Evolution of the Search for Novel Genes in Mammalian Sex Determination: From Mice to Men

    PubMed Central

    Arboleda, Valerie A.; Vilain, Eric

    2011-01-01

    Disorders of sex determination are a genetically heterogeneous group of rare disorders, presenting with sex-specific phenotypes and variable expressivity. Prior to the advent of the Human Genome Project, the identification of novel mammalian sex determination genes was hindered by the rarity of disorders of sex determination and small family sizes that made traditional linkage approaches difficult, if not impossible. This article reviews the revolutionary role of the Human Genome Project in the history of sex determination research and highlights the important role of inbred mouse models in elucidating the role of identified sex determination genes in mammalian sex determination. Next generation sequencing technologies has made it possible to sequence complete human genomes or exomes for the purpose of providing a genetic diagnosis to more patients with unexplained disorders of sex determination and identifying novel sex determination genes. However, beyond novel gene discovery, these tools have the power to inform us on more intricate and complex regulation-taking place within the heterogeneous cells that make up the testis and ovary. PMID:21795084

  10. Transcriptomic Analysis Implies That GA Regulates Sex Expression via Ethylene-Dependent and Ethylene-Independent Pathways in Cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.)

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yan; Zhao, Guiye; Li, Yushun; Mo, Ning; Zhang, Jie; Liang, Yan

    2017-01-01

    Sex differentiation of flower buds is an important developmental process that directly affects fruit yield of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.). Plant hormones, such as gibberellins (GAs) and ethylene can promote development of male and female flowers, respectively, however, the regulatory mechanisms of GA-induced male flower formation and potential involvement of ethylene in this process still remain unknown. In this study, to unravel the genes and gene networks involved in GA-regulated cucumber sexual development, we performed high throughout RNA-Seq analyses that compared the transcriptomes of shoot tips between GA3 treated and untreated gynoecious cucumber plants. Results showed that GA3 application markedly induced male flowers but decreased ethylene production in shoot tips. Furthermore, the transcript levels of M (CsACS2) gene, ethylene receptor CsETR1 and some ethylene-responsive transcription factors were dramatically changed after GA3 treatment, suggesting a potential involvement of ethylene in GA-regulated sex expression of cucumber. Interestingly, GA3 down-regulated transcript of a C-class floral homeotic gene, CAG2, indicating that GA may also influence cucumber sex determination through an ethylene-independent process. These results suggest a novel model for hormone-mediated sex differentiation and provide a theoretical basis for further dissection of the regulatory mechanism of male flower formation in cucumber. Statement: We reveal that GA can regulate sex expression of cucumber via an ethylene-dependent manner, and the M (CsACS2), CsETR1, and ERFs are probably involved in this process. Moreover, CAG2, a C-class floral homeotic gene, may also participate in GA-modulated cucumber sex determination, but this pathway is ethylene-independent. PMID:28154572

  11. Phylogenetic inconsistency caused by ancient sex-biased gene migration.

    PubMed

    Osada, Naoki

    2011-01-01

    Inferences of ancient sex-biased migration patterns using sex-linked genetic markers are usually difficult because of a stochastic process of allele fixation. Nevertheless, incongruent phylogenetic trees between different sex-linked markers and between sex-linked and autosomal markers are frequently interpreted as a signature of sex-biased migration without further statistical evaluation. I investigated the types of incongruent phylogenetic trees from which past sex-biased migration events can be statistically supported under the coalescent model. In the case of mammals, detecting a sex-biased migration pattern is not guaranteed by comparing the phylogenetic pattern of mitochondrial and Y-chromosomal loci. Likewise, evidence of introgression at a mitochondrial locus, but not at autosomal loci, does not support the hypothesis of an ancient female-biased migration pattern with statistical significance. In contrast, evidence of introgression at ≥ 5 unlinked autosomal loci, but not at a Y-chromosomal locus, would reject the null hypothesis of a sexually equal migration rate with statistical significance. A similar argument can be made to infer a male-biased migration pattern. Furthermore, the investigation of many recombining sex-biased markers such as X-chromosomal loci in mammals has the potential to efficiently detect ancient sex-biased demographic patterns.

  12. Sex determination in 58 bird species and evaluation of CHD gene as a universal molecular marker in bird sexing.

    PubMed

    Vucicevic, Milos; Stevanov-Pavlovic, Marija; Stevanovic, Jevrosima; Bosnjak, Jasna; Gajic, Bojan; Aleksic, Nevenka; Stanimirovic, Zoran

    2013-01-01

    The aim of this research was to test the CHD gene (Chromo Helicase DNA-binding gene) as a universal molecular marker for sexing birds of relatively distant species. The CHD gene corresponds to the aim because of its high degree of conservation and different lengths in Z and W chromosomes due to different intron sizes. DNA was isolated from feathers and the amplification of the CHD gene was performed with the following sets of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) primers: 2550F/2718R and P2/P8. Sex determination was attempted in 284 samples of 58 bird species. It was successful in 50 bird species; in 16 of those (Alopochen aegyptiacus, Ara severus, Aratinga acuticaudata, Bucorvus leadbeateri, Cereopsis novaehollandiae, Columba arquatrix, Corvus corax, C. frugilegus, Cyanoliseus patagonus, Guttera plumifera, Lamprotornis superbus, Milvus milvus, Neophron percnopterus, Ocyphaps lophotes, Podiceps cristatus, and Poicephalus senegalus), it was carried out for the first time using molecular markers and PCR. It is reasonable to assume that extensive research is necessary to define the CHD gene as a universal molecular marker for successful sex determination in all bird species (with exception of ratites). The results of this study may largely contribute to the aim.

  13. Sex-biased gene expression during head development in a sexually dimorphic stalk-eyed fly.

    PubMed

    Wilkinson, Gerald S; Johns, Philip M; Metheny, Jackie D; Baker, Richard H

    2013-01-01

    Stalk-eyed flies (family Diopsidae) are a model system for studying sexual selection due to the elongated and sexually dimorphic eye-stalks found in many species. These flies are of additional interest because their X chromosome is derived largely from an autosomal arm in other flies. To identify candidate genes required for development of dimorphic eyestalks and investigate how sex-biased expression arose on the novel X, we compared gene expression between males and females using oligonucleotide microarrays and RNA from developing eyestalk tissue or adult heads in the dimorphic diopsid, Teleopsis dalmanni. Microarray analysis revealed sex-biased expression for 26% of 3,748 genes expressed in eye-antennal imaginal discs and concordant sex-biased expression for 86 genes in adult heads. Overall, 415 female-biased and 482 male-biased genes were associated with dimorphic eyestalk development but not differential expression in the adult head. Functional analysis revealed that male-biased genes are disproportionately associated with growth and mitochondrial function while female-biased genes are associated with cell differentiation and patterning or are novel transcripts. With regard to chromosomal effects, dosage compensation occurs by elevated expression of X-linked genes in males. Genes with female-biased expression were more common on the X and less common on autosomes than expected, while male-biased genes exhibited no chromosomal pattern. Rates of protein evolution were lower for female-biased genes but higher for genes that moved on or off the novel X chromosome. These findings cannot be due to meiotic sex chromosome inactivation or by constraints associated with dosage compensation. Instead, they could be consistent with sexual conflict in which female-biased genes on the novel X act primarily to reduce eyespan in females while other genes increase eyespan in both sexes. Additional information on sex-biased gene expression in other tissues and related sexually

  14. Sex-biased gene expression in dioecious garden asparagus (Asparagus officinalis).

    PubMed

    Harkess, Alex; Mercati, Francesco; Shan, Hong-Yan; Sunseri, Francesco; Falavigna, Agostino; Leebens-Mack, Jim

    2015-08-01

    Sex chromosomes have evolved independently in phylogenetically diverse flowering plant lineages. The genes governing sex determination in dioecious species remain unknown, but theory predicts that the linkage of genes influencing male and female function will spur the origin and early evolution of sex chromosomes. For example, in an XY system, the origin of an active Y may be spurred by the linkage of female suppressing and male promoting genes. Garden asparagus (Asparagus officinalis) serves as a model for plant sex chromosome evolution, given that it has recently evolved an XX/XY sex chromosome system. In order to elucidate the molecular basis of gender differences and sex determination, we used RNA-sequencing (RNA-Seq) to identify differentially expressed genes between female (XX), male (XY) and supermale (YY) individuals. We identified 570 differentially expressed genes, and showed that significantly more genes exhibited male-biased than female-biased expression in garden asparagus. In the context of anther development, we identified genes involved in pollen microspore and tapetum development that were specifically expressed in males and supermales. Comparative analysis of genes in the Arabidopsis thaliana, Zea mays and Oryza sativa anther development pathways shows that anther sterility in females probably occurs through interruption of tapetum development before microspore meiosis.

  15. Assessment of Gene-by-Sex Interaction Effect on Bone Mineral Density

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Ching-Ti; Estrada, Karol; Yerges-Armstrong, Laura M.; Amin, Najaf; Evangelou, Evangelos; Li, Guo; Minster, Ryan L.; Carless, Melanie A.; Kammerer, Candace M.; Oei, Ling; Zhou, Yanhua; Alonso, Nerea; Dailiana, Zoe; Eriksson, Joel; García-Giralt, Natalia; Giroux, Sylvie; Husted, Lise Bjerre; Khusainova, Rita I.; Koromila, Theodora; Kung, Annie WaiChee; Lewis, Joshua R.; Masi, Laura; Mencej-Bedrac, Simona; Nogues, Xavier; Patel, Millan S.; Prezelj, Janez; Richards, J Brent; Sham, Pak Chung; Spector, Timothy; Vandenput, Liesbeth; Xiao, Su-Mei; Zheng, Hou-Feng; Zhu, Kun; Balcells, Susana; Brandi, Maria Luisa; Frost, Morten; Goltzman, David; González-Macías, Jesús; Karlsson, Magnus; Khusnutdinova, Elza K.; Kollia, Panagoula; Langdahl, Bente Lomholt; Ljunggren, Östen; Lorentzon, Mattias; Marc, Janja; Mellström, Dan; Ohlsson, Claes; Olmos, José M.; Ralston, Stuart H.; Riancho, José A.; Rousseau, François; Urreizti, Roser; Van Hul, Wim; Zarrabeitia, María T.; Castano-Betancourt, Martha; Demissie, Serkalem; Grundberg, Elin; Herrera, Lizbeth; Kwan, Tony; Medina-Gómez, Carolina; Pastinen, Tomi; Sigurdsson, Gunnar; Thorleifsson, Gudmar; vanMeurs, Joyce B.J.; Blangero, John; Hofman, Albert; Liu, Yongmei; Mitchell, Braxton D.; O’Connell, Jeffrey R.; Oostra, Ben A.; Rotter, Jerome I; Stefansson, Kari; Streeten, Elizabeth A.; Styrkarsdottir, Unnur; Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur; Tylavsky, Frances A.; Uitterlinden, Andre; Cauley, Jane A.; Harris, Tamara B.; Ioannidis, John P.A.; Psaty, Bruce M.; Robbins, John A; Zillikens, M. Carola; vanDuijn, Cornelia M.; Prince, Richard L.; Karasik, David; Rivadeneira, Fernando; Kiel, Douglas P.; Cupples, L. Adrienne; Hsu, Yi-Hsiang

    2012-01-01

    Background Sexual dimorphism in various bone phenotypes, including bone mineral density (BMD), is widely observed; however the extent to which genes explain these sex differences is unclear. To identify variants with different effects by sex, we examined gene-by-sex autosomal interactions genome-wide, and performed eQTL analysis and bioinformatics network analysis. Methods We conducted an autosomal genome-wide meta-analysis of gene-by-sex interaction on lumbar spine (LS-) and femoral neck (FN-) BMD, in 25,353 individuals from eight cohorts. In a second stage, we followed up the 12 top SNPs (P<1×10−5) in an additional set of 24,763 individuals. Gene-by-sex interaction and sex-specific effects were examined in these 12 SNPs. Results We detected one novel genome-wide significant interaction associated with LS-BMD at the Chr3p26.1-p25.1 locus, near the GRM7 gene (male effect = 0.02 & p-value = 3.0×10−5; female effect = −0.007 & p-value=3.3×10−2) and eleven suggestive loci associated with either FN- or LS-BMD in discovery cohorts. However, there was no evidence for genome-wide significant (P<5×10−8) gene-by-sex interaction in the joint analysis of discovery and replication cohorts. Conclusion Despite the large collaborative effort, no genome-wide significant evidence for gene-by-sex interaction was found influencing BMD variation in this screen of autosomal markers. If they exist, gene-by-sex interactions for BMD probably have weak effects, accounting for less than 0.08% of the variation in these traits per implicated SNP. PMID:22692763

  16. Identification and Expression Profiles of Sex Pheromone Biosynthesis and Transport Related Genes in Spodoptera litura

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Ya-Nan; Zhu, Xiu-Yun; Fang, Li-Ping; He, Peng; Wang, Zhi-Qiang; Chen, Geng; Sun, Liang; Ye, Zhan-Feng; Deng, Dao-Gui; Li, Jin-Bu

    2015-01-01

    Although the general pathway of sex pheromone synthesis in moth species has been established, the molecular mechanisms remain poorly understood. The common cutworm Spodoptera litura is an important agricultural pest worldwide and causes huge economic losses annually. The female sex pheromone of S. litura comprises Z9,E11-14:OAc, Z9,E12-14:OAc, Z9-14:OAc, and E11-14:OAc. By sequencing and analyzing the transcriptomic data of the sex pheromone glands, we identified 94 candidate genes related to pheromone biosynthesis (55 genes) or chemoreception (39 genes). Gene expression patterns and phylogenetic analysis revealed that two desaturase genes (SlitDes5 and SlitDes11) and one fatty acyl reductase gene (SlitFAR3) showed pheromone gland (PG) biased or specific expression, and clustered with genes known to be involved in pheromone synthesis in other moth species. Furthermore, 4 chemoreception related genes (SlitOBP6, SlitOBP11, SlitCSP3, and SlitCSP14) also showed higher expression in the PG, and could be additional candidate genes involved in sex pheromone transport. This study provides the first solid background information that should facilitate further elucidation of sex pheromone biosynthesis and transport, and indicates potential targets to disrupt sexual communication in S. litura for a novel pest management strategy. PMID:26445454

  17. Identification and Expression Profiles of Sex Pheromone Biosynthesis and Transport Related Genes in Spodoptera litura.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ya-Nan; Zhu, Xiu-Yun; Fang, Li-Ping; He, Peng; Wang, Zhi-Qiang; Chen, Geng; Sun, Liang; Ye, Zhan-Feng; Deng, Dao-Gui; Li, Jin-Bu

    2015-01-01

    Although the general pathway of sex pheromone synthesis in moth species has been established, the molecular mechanisms remain poorly understood. The common cutworm Spodoptera litura is an important agricultural pest worldwide and causes huge economic losses annually. The female sex pheromone of S. litura comprises Z9,E11-14:OAc, Z9,E12-14:OAc, Z9-14:OAc, and E11-14:OAc. By sequencing and analyzing the transcriptomic data of the sex pheromone glands, we identified 94 candidate genes related to pheromone biosynthesis (55 genes) or chemoreception (39 genes). Gene expression patterns and phylogenetic analysis revealed that two desaturase genes (SlitDes5 and SlitDes11) and one fatty acyl reductase gene (SlitFAR3) showed pheromone gland (PG) biased or specific expression, and clustered with genes known to be involved in pheromone synthesis in other moth species. Furthermore, 4 chemoreception related genes (SlitOBP6, SlitOBP11, SlitCSP3, and SlitCSP14) also showed higher expression in the PG, and could be additional candidate genes involved in sex pheromone transport. This study provides the first solid background information that should facilitate further elucidation of sex pheromone biosynthesis and transport, and indicates potential targets to disrupt sexual communication in S. litura for a novel pest management strategy.

  18. Sex chromosome loss and the pseudoautosomal region genes in hematological malignancies

    PubMed Central

    Weng, Stephanie; Stoner, Samuel A.; Zhang, Dong-Er

    2016-01-01

    Cytogenetic aberrations, such as chromosomal translocations, aneuploidy, and amplifications, are frequently detected in hematological malignancies. For many of the common autosomal aberrations, the mechanisms underlying their roles in cancer development have been well-characterized. On the contrary, although loss of a sex chromosome is observed in a broad range of hematological malignancies, how it cooperates in disease development is less understood. Nevertheless, it has been postulated that tumor suppressor genes reside on the sex chromosomes. Although the X and Y sex chromosomes are highly divergent, the pseudoautosomal regions are homologous between both chromosomes. Here, we review what is currently known about the pseudoautosomal region genes in the hematological system. Additionally, we discuss implications for haploinsufficiency of critical pseudoautosomal region sex chromosome genes, driven by sex chromosome loss, in promoting hematological malignancies. Because mechanistic studies on disease development rely heavily on murine models, we also discuss the challenges and caveats of existing models, and propose alternatives for examining the involvement of pseudoautosomal region genes and loss of a sex chromosome in vivo. With the widespread detection of loss of a sex chromosome in different hematological malignances, the elucidation of the role of pseudoautosomal region genes in the development and progression of these diseases would be invaluable to the field. PMID:27655702

  19. Sex as a response to oxidative stress: a twofold increase in cellular reactive oxygen species activates sex genes.

    PubMed

    Nedelcu, Aurora M; Marcu, Oana; Michod, Richard E

    2004-08-07

    Organisms are constantly subjected to factors that can alter the cellular redox balance and result in the formation of a series of highly reactive molecules known as reactive oxygen species (ROS). As ROS can be damaging to biological structures, cells evolved a series of mechanisms (e.g. cell-cycle arrest, programmed cell death) to respond to high levels of ROS (i.e. oxidative stress). Recently, we presented evidence that in a facultatively sexual lineage--the multicellular green alga Volvox carteri--sex is an additional response to increased levels of stress, and probably ROS and DNA damage. Here we show that, in V. carteri, (i) sex is triggered by an approximately twofold increase in the level of cellular ROS (induced either by the natural sex-inducing stress, namely heat, or by blocking the mitochondrial electron transport chain with antimycin A), and (ii) ROS are responsible for the activation of sex genes. As most types of stress result in the overproduction of ROS, we believe that our findings will prove to extend to other facultatively sexual lineages, which could be indicative of the ancestral role of sex as an adaptive response to stress and ROS-induced DNA damage.

  20. Independent evolutionary origin of fem paralogous genes and complementary sex determination in hymenopteran insects.

    PubMed

    Koch, Vasco; Nissen, Inga; Schmitt, Björn D; Beye, Martin

    2014-01-01

    The primary signal of sex determination in the honeybee, the complementary sex determiner (csd) gene, evolved from a gene duplication event from an ancestral copy of the fem gene. Recently, other paralogs of the fem gene have been identified in several ant and bumblebee genomes. This discovery and the close phylogenetic relationship of the paralogous gene sequences led to the hypothesis of a single ancestry of the csd genetic system of complementary sex determination in the Hymenopteran insects, in which the fem and csd gene copies evolved as a unit in concert with the mutual transfers of sequences (concerted evolution). Here, we show that the paralogous gene copies evolved repeatedly through independent gene duplication events in the honeybee, bumblebee, and ant lineage. We detected no sequence tracts that would indicate a DNA transfer between the fem and the fem1/csd genes between different ant and bee species. Instead, we found tracts of duplication events in other genomic locations, suggesting that gene duplication was a frequent event in the evolution of these genes. These and other evidences suggest that the fem1/csd gene originated repeatedly through gene duplications in the bumblebee, honeybee, and ant lineages in the last 100 million years. Signatures of concerted evolution were not detectable, implicating that the gene tree based on neutral synonymous sites represents the phylogenetic relationships and origins of the fem and fem1/csd genes. Our results further imply that the fem1 and csd gene in bumblebees, honeybees, and ants are not orthologs, because they originated independently from the fem gene. Hence, the widely shared and conserved complementary sex determination mechanism in Hymenopteran insects is controlled by different genes and molecular processes. These findings highlight the limits of comparative genomics and emphasize the requirement to study gene functions in different species and major hymenopteran lineages.

  1. Is a sex-determining gene(s) necessary for sex-determination in amphibians? Steroid hormones may be the key factor.

    PubMed

    Nakamura, M

    2013-01-01

    Amphibians have 2 genetic sex-determining systems, one with male (XX/XY) and one with female (ZZ/ZW) heterogamety. While the ancestral state of sex-determination is thought to be female heterogamety, male and female heterogametic types were probably once interchangeable. The Japanese frog Rana rugosa has both XX/XY and ZZ/ZW systems within a single species in certain local populations. However, steroid hormones can alter the phenotypic sex epigenetically. In R. rugosa, steroidogenic enzyme expression starts before sex-determination in the indifferent gonad, and these enzymes become active in both male and female tadpoles. Androgens are produced in the indifferent gonad of male tadpoles at high levels, whereas estrogens are synthesized in females. In this regard, the observed enhanced expression of the hormone-metabolizing genes, CYP19 in the female gonad and CYP17 in males, may be crucial for sex-determination. Moreover, with FSH known to increase estrogen synthesis in the vertebrate ovary, observed upregulation of FSH receptor (FSHR) expression in the indifferent gonad of female tadpoles is intriguing. These data suggest that steroid hormones could be crucial for sex-determination in R. rugosa, with the consequence that upregulation of CYP19 and FSHR expression is necessary for female and CYP17 for male sex-determination.

  2. Gender-specific gene expression in post-mortem human brain: localization to sex chromosomes.

    PubMed

    Vawter, Marquis P; Evans, Simon; Choudary, Prabhakara; Tomita, Hiroaki; Meador-Woodruff, Jim; Molnar, Margherita; Li, Jun; Lopez, Juan F; Myers, Rick; Cox, David; Watson, Stanley J; Akil, Huda; Jones, Edward G; Bunney, William E

    2004-02-01

    Gender differences in brain development and in the prevalence of neuropsychiatric disorders such as depression have been reported. Gender differences in human brain might be related to patterns of gene expression. Microarray technology is one useful method for investigation of gene expression in brain. We investigated gene expression, cell types, and regional expression patterns of differentially expressed sex chromosome genes in brain. We profiled gene expression in male and female dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, anterior cingulate cortex, and cerebellum using the Affymetrix oligonucleotide microarray platform. Differentially expressed genes between males and females on the Y chromosome (DBY, SMCY, UTY, RPS4Y, and USP9Y) and X chromosome (XIST) were confirmed using real-time PCR measurements. In situ hybridization confirmed the differential expression of gender-specific genes and neuronal expression of XIST, RPS4Y, SMCY, and UTY in three brain regions examined. The XIST gene, which silences gene expression on regions of the X chromosome, is expressed in a subset of neurons. Since a subset of neurons express gender-specific genes, neural subpopulations may exhibit a subtle sexual dimorphism at the level of differences in gene regulation and function. The distinctive pattern of neuronal expression of XIST, RPS4Y, SMCY, and UTY and other sex chromosome genes in neuronal subpopulations may possibly contribute to gender differences in prevalence noted for some neuropsychiatric disorders. Studies of the protein expression of these sex-chromosome-linked genes in brain tissue are required to address the functional consequences of the observed gene expression differences.

  3. Identification of internal reference genes for gene expression normalization between the two sexes in dioecious white Campion.

    PubMed

    Zemp, Niklaus; Minder, Aria; Widmer, Alex

    2014-01-01

    Quantitative real time (qRT)-PCR is a precise and efficient method for studying gene expression changes between two states of interest, and is frequently used for validating interesting gene expression patterns in candidate genes initially identified in genome-wide expression analyses, such as RNA-seq experiments. For an adequate normalisation of qRT-PCR data, it is essential to have reference genes available whose expression intensities are constant among the different states of interest. In this study we present and validate a catalogue of traditional and newly identified reference genes that were selected from RNA-seq data from multiple individuals from the dioecious plant Silene latifolia with the aim of studying gene expression differences between the two sexes in both reproductive and vegetative tissues. The catalogue contains more than 15 reference genes with both stable expression intensities and a range of expression intensities in flower buds and leaf tissues. These reference genes were used to normalize expression differences between reproductive and vegetative tissues in eight candidate genes with sex-biased expression. Our results suggest a trend towards a reduced sex-bias in sex-linked gene expression in vegetative tissues. In this study, we report on the systematic identification and validation of internal reference genes for adequate normalization of qRT-PCR-based analyses of gene expression differences between the two sexes in S. latifolia. We also show how RNA-seq data can be used efficiently to identify suitable reference genes in a wide diversity of species.

  4. Chromosome-wide mechanisms to decouple gene expression from gene dose during sex-chromosome evolution

    PubMed Central

    Wheeler, Bayly S; Anderson, Erika; Frøkjær-Jensen, Christian; Bian, Qian; Jorgensen, Erik; Meyer, Barbara J

    2016-01-01

    Changes in chromosome number impair fitness by disrupting the balance of gene expression. Here we analyze mechanisms to compensate for changes in gene dose that accompanied the evolution of sex chromosomes from autosomes. Using single-copy transgenes integrated throughout the Caenorhabditis elegans genome, we show that expression of all X-linked transgenes is balanced between XX hermaphrodites and XO males. However, proximity of a dosage compensation complex (DCC) binding site (rex site) is neither necessary to repress X-linked transgenes nor sufficient to repress transgenes on autosomes. Thus, X is broadly permissive for dosage compensation, and the DCC acts via a chromosome-wide mechanism to balance transcription between sexes. In contrast, no analogous X-chromosome-wide mechanism balances transcription between X and autosomes: expression of compensated hermaphrodite X-linked transgenes is half that of autosomal transgenes. Furthermore, our results argue against an X-chromosome dosage compensation model contingent upon rex-directed positioning of X relative to the nuclear periphery. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.17365.001 PMID:27572259

  5. Evolutionary conservation and predicted structure of the Drosophila extra sex combs repressor protein.

    PubMed Central

    Ng, J; Li, R; Morgan, K; Simon, J

    1997-01-01

    The Drosophila extra sex combs (esc) protein, a member of the Polycomb group (PcG), is a transcriptional repressor of homeotic genes. Genetic studies have shown that esc protein is required in early embryos at about the time that other PcG proteins become engaged in homeotic gene repression. The esc protein consists primarily of multiple copies of the WD repeat, a motif that has been implicated in protein-protein interaction. To further investigate the domain organization of esc protein, we have isolated and characterized esc homologs from divergent insect species. We report that esc protein is highly conserved in housefly (72% identical to Drosophila esc), butterfly (55% identical), and grasshopper (56% identical). We show that the butterfly homolog provides esc function in Drosophila, indicating that the sequence similarities reflect functional conservation. Homology modeling using the crystal structure of another WD repeat protein, the G-protein beta-subunit, predicts that esc protein adopts a beta-propeller structure. The sequence comparisons and modeling suggest that there are seven WD repeats in esc protein which together form a seven-bladed beta-propeller. We locate the conserved regions in esc protein with respect to this predicted structure. Site-directed mutagenesis of specific loops, predicted to extend from the propeller surface, identifies conserved parts of esc protein required for function in vivo. We suggest that these regions might mediate physical interaction with esc partner proteins. PMID:9343430

  6. The role of the transformer gene in sex determination and reproduction in the tephritid fruit fly, Bactrocera dorsalis (Hendel)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Transformer (tra) is a double-switch gene in the somatic sex-determination hierarchy that regulates sexual dimorphism based on RNA splicing in many insects. In tephritids, a Y-linked male determining gene (M) controls sex in the sex-determination pathway. Here, homologues of Drosophila tra and trans...

  7. Sex hormone-binding globulins characterization and gonadal gene expression during sex differentiation in the rainbow trout, Oncorhynchus mykiss.

    PubMed

    Marivin, Elisa; Yano, Ayaka; Guérin, Adèle; Nguyen, Thao-Vi; Fostier, Alexis; Bobe, Julien; Guiguen, Yann

    2014-08-01

    Sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG) binds androgens and estrogens in the blood of many vertebrates, including teleost fish. In mammals, SHBG is synthetized in the liver and secreted into the blood. In fish, shbga also exhibits a hepatic expression. In salmonids, in which the gene has been duplicated, the recently discovered shbgb gene exhibits a predominantly ovarian expression. The present work aimed at gaining new insight into shbgb gene structure and expression during gonadal sex differentiation, a steroid-sensitive process, and Shbgb protein structure and binding characteristics; specifically, rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) shbgb was analyzed. shbgb structure was analyzed in silico while expression was characterized during gonadal sex differentiation using all-male and all-female populations. We observed that shbgb gene and cognate-protein structures are similar to homologs previously described in zebrafish and mammals. The shbgb gene is predominantly expressed in differentiating female gonads, with increased expression around the end of ovarian differentiation. In the ovary, shbgb mRNA was detected in a subset of somatic cells surrounding the ovarian lamellae. Furthermore, Shbgb binds steroids with a higher selectivity than Shbga, exhibiting a higher affinity for estradiol compared to Shbga. In conclusion, Shbgb binding characteristics are clearly different from those of Shbga. Shbgb is expressed in the differentiating ovary during a period when the synthesis and action of testosterone and estradiol must be tightly regulated. This strongly suggests that Shbgb participates in the regulation of steroid metabolism and/or mediation, that is, needed during early gonadal development in rainbow trout.

  8. Influence of sex on gene expression in human corneal epithelial cells

    PubMed Central

    Suzuki, Tomo; Richards, Stephen M.; Liu, Shaohui; Jensen, Roderick V.

    2009-01-01

    Purpose Sex-associated differences have been identified in the anatomy, physiology and pathophysiology of the human cornea. We hypothesize that many of these differences are due to fundamental variations in gene expression. Our objective in this study was to determine whether such differences exist in human corneal epithelial cells both in vivo and in vitro. Methods Human corneal epithelial cells were isolated from the corneoscleral rims of male and female donors. Cells were processed either directly for RNA extraction, or first cultured in phenol red-free keratinocyte serum-free media. The RNA samples were examined for differentially expressed mRNAs by using of CodeLink Bioarrays and Affymetrix GeneChips. Data were analyzed with GeneSifter.Net software. Results Our results demonstrate that sex significantly influences the expression of over 600 genes in human corneal epithelial cells in vivo. These genes are involved in a broad spectrum of biologic processes, molecular functions and cellular components, such as metabolic processes, DNA replication, cell migration, RNA binding, oxidoreductase activity and nucleoli. We also identified significant, sex-related effects on gene expression in human corneal epithelial cells in vitro. However, with few exceptions (e.g., X- and Y-linked genes), these sex-related differences in gene expression in vitro were typically different than those in vivo. Conclusions Our findings support our hypothesis that sex-related differences exist in the gene expression of human corneal epithelial cells. Variations in gene expression may contribute to sex-related differences in the prevalence of certain corneal diseases. PMID:20011627

  9. Targeted Deletion of Btg1 and Btg2 Results in Homeotic Transformation of the Axial Skeleton.

    PubMed

    Tijchon, Esther; van Ingen Schenau, Dorette; van Opzeeland, Fred; Tirone, Felice; Hoogerbrugge, Peter M; Van Leeuwen, Frank N; Scheijen, Blanca

    2015-01-01

    Btg1 and Btg2 encode highly homologous proteins that are broadly expressed in different cell lineages, and have been implicated in different types of cancer. Btg1 and Btg2 have been shown to modulate the function of different transcriptional regulators, including Hox and Smad transcription factors. In this study, we examined the in vivo role of the mouse Btg1 and Btg2 genes in specifying the regional identity of the axial skeleton. Therefore, we examined the phenotype of Btg1 and Btg2 single knockout mice, as well as novel generated Btg1-/-;Btg2-/- double knockout mice, which were viable, but displayed a non-mendelian inheritance and smaller litter size. We observed both unique and overlapping phenotypes reminiscent of homeotic transformation along the anterior-posterior axis in the single and combined Btg1 and Btg2 knockout animals. Both Btg1-/- and Btg2-/- mice displayed partial posterior transformation of the seventh cervical vertebra, which was more pronounced in Btg1-/-;Btg2-/- mice, demonstrating that Btg1 and Btg2 act in synergy. Loss of Btg2, but not Btg1, was sufficient for complete posterior transformation of the thirteenth thoracic vertebra to the first lumbar vertebra. Moreover, Btg2-/- animals displayed complete posterior transformation of the sixth lumbar vertebra to the first sacral vertebra, which was only partially present at a low frequency in Btg1-/- mice. The Btg1-/-;Btg2-/- animals showed an even stronger phenotype, with L5 to S1 transformation. Together, these data show that both Btg1 and Btg2 are required for normal vertebral patterning of the axial skeleton, but each gene contributes differently in specifying the identity along the anterior-posterior axis of the skeleton.

  10. Cell-Autonomous Sex Differences in Gene Expression in Chicken Bone Marrow–Derived Macrophages

    PubMed Central

    Garcia-Morales, Carla; Nandi, Sunil; Zhao, Debiao; Sauter, Kristin A.; Vervelde, Lonneke; McBride, Derek; Sang, Helen M.; Clinton, Mike

    2015-01-01

    We have identified differences in gene expression in macrophages grown from the bone marrow of male and female chickens in recombinant chicken M-CSF (CSF1). Cells were profiled with or without treatment with bacterial LPS for 24 h. Approximately 600 transcripts were induced by prolonged LPS stimulation to an equal extent in the male and female macrophages. Many transcripts encoded on the Z chromosome were expressed ∼1.6-fold higher in males, reflecting a lack of dosage compensation in the homogametic sex. A smaller set of W chromosome–specific genes was expressed only in females. LPS signaling in mammals is associated with induction of type 1 IFN–responsive genes. Unexpectedly, because IFNs are encoded on the Z chromosome of chickens, unstimulated macrophages from the female birds expressed a set of known IFN-inducible genes at much higher levels than male cells under the same conditions. To confirm that these differences were not the consequence of the actions of gonadal hormones, we induced gonadal sex reversal to alter the hormonal environment of the developing chick and analyzed macrophages cultured from male, female, and female sex-reversed embryos. Gonadal sex reversal did not alter the sexually dimorphic expression of either sex-linked or IFN-responsive genes. We suggest that female birds compensate for the reduced dose of inducible IFN with a higher basal set point of IFN-responsive genes. PMID:25637020

  11. Cell-autonomous sex differences in gene expression in chicken bone marrow-derived macrophages.

    PubMed

    Garcia-Morales, Carla; Nandi, Sunil; Zhao, Debiao; Sauter, Kristin A; Vervelde, Lonneke; McBride, Derek; Sang, Helen M; Clinton, Mike; Hume, David A

    2015-03-01

    We have identified differences in gene expression in macrophages grown from the bone marrow of male and female chickens in recombinant chicken M-CSF (CSF1). Cells were profiled with or without treatment with bacterial LPS for 24 h. Approximately 600 transcripts were induced by prolonged LPS stimulation to an equal extent in the male and female macrophages. Many transcripts encoded on the Z chromosome were expressed ∼1.6-fold higher in males, reflecting a lack of dosage compensation in the homogametic sex. A smaller set of W chromosome-specific genes was expressed only in females. LPS signaling in mammals is associated with induction of type 1 IFN-responsive genes. Unexpectedly, because IFNs are encoded on the Z chromosome of chickens, unstimulated macrophages from the female birds expressed a set of known IFN-inducible genes at much higher levels than male cells under the same conditions. To confirm that these differences were not the consequence of the actions of gonadal hormones, we induced gonadal sex reversal to alter the hormonal environment of the developing chick and analyzed macrophages cultured from male, female, and female sex-reversed embryos. Gonadal sex reversal did not alter the sexually dimorphic expression of either sex-linked or IFN-responsive genes. We suggest that female birds compensate for the reduced dose of inducible IFN with a higher basal set point of IFN-responsive genes.

  12. De Novo Transcriptome Assembly and Sex-Biased Gene Expression in the Cyclical Parthenogenetic Daphnia galeata

    PubMed Central

    Huylmans, Ann Kathrin; López Ezquerra, Alberto; Parsch, John; Cordellier, Mathilde

    2016-01-01

    Daphnia species have become models for ecological genomics and exhibit interesting features, such as high phenotypic plasticity and a densely packed genome with many lineage-specific genes. They are also cyclic parthenogenetic, with alternating asexual and sexual cycles and environmental sex determination. Here, we present a de novo transcriptome assembly of over 32,000 D. galeata genes and use it to investigate gene expression in females and spontaneously produced males of two clonal lines derived from lakes in Germany and the Czech Republic. We find that only a low percentage (18%) of genes shows sex-biased expression and that there are many more female-biased gene (FBG) than male-biased gene (MBG). Furthermore, FBGs tend to be more conserved between species than MBGs in both sequence and expression. These patterns may be a consequence of cyclic parthenogenesis leading to a relaxation of purifying selection on MBGs. The two clonal lines show considerable differences in both number and identity of sex-biased genes, suggesting that they may have reproductive strategies differing in their investment in sexual reproduction. Orthologs of key genes in the sex determination and juvenile hormone pathways, which are thought to be important for the transition from asexual to sexual reproduction, are present in D. galeata and highly conserved among Daphnia species. PMID:27604882

  13. Sexually dimorphic gene expressions in eels: useful markers for early sex assessment in a conservation context

    PubMed Central

    Geffroy, Benjamin; Guilbaud, Florian; Amilhat, Elsa; Beaulaton, Laurent; Vignon, Matthias; Huchet, Emmanuel; Rives, Jacques; Bobe, Julien; Fostier, Alexis; Guiguen, Yann; Bardonnet, Agnès

    2016-01-01

    Environmental sex determination (ESD) has been detected in a range of vertebrate reptile and fish species. Eels are characterized by an ESD that occurs relatively late, since sex cannot be histologically determined before individuals reach 28 cm. Because several eel species are at risk of extinction, assessing sex at the earliest stage is a crucial management issue. Based on preliminary results of RNA sequencing, we targeted genes susceptible to be differentially expressed between ovaries and testis at different stages of development. Using qPCR, we detected testis-specific expressions of dmrt1, amh, gsdf and pre-miR202 and ovary-specific expressions were obtained for zar1, zp3 and foxn5. We showed that gene expressions in the gonad of intersexual eels were quite similar to those of males, supporting the idea that intersexual eels represent a transitional stage towards testicular differentiation. To assess whether these genes would be effective early molecular markers, we sampled juvenile eels in two locations with highly skewed sex ratios. The combined expression of six of these genes allowed the discrimination of groups according to their potential future sex and thus this appears to be a useful tool to estimate sex ratios of undifferentiated juvenile eels. PMID:27658729

  14. Sexually dimorphic gene expressions in eels: useful markers for early sex assessment in a conservation context

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Geffroy, Benjamin; Guilbaud, Florian; Amilhat, Elsa; Beaulaton, Laurent; Vignon, Matthias; Huchet, Emmanuel; Rives, Jacques; Bobe, Julien; Fostier, Alexis; Guiguen, Yann; Bardonnet, Agnès

    2016-09-01

    Environmental sex determination (ESD) has been detected in a range of vertebrate reptile and fish species. Eels are characterized by an ESD that occurs relatively late, since sex cannot be histologically determined before individuals reach 28 cm. Because several eel species are at risk of extinction, assessing sex at the earliest stage is a crucial management issue. Based on preliminary results of RNA sequencing, we targeted genes susceptible to be differentially expressed between ovaries and testis at different stages of development. Using qPCR, we detected testis-specific expressions of dmrt1, amh, gsdf and pre-miR202 and ovary-specific expressions were obtained for zar1, zp3 and foxn5. We showed that gene expressions in the gonad of intersexual eels were quite similar to those of males, supporting the idea that intersexual eels represent a transitional stage towards testicular differentiation. To assess whether these genes would be effective early molecular markers, we sampled juvenile eels in two locations with highly skewed sex ratios. The combined expression of six of these genes allowed the discrimination of groups according to their potential future sex and thus this appears to be a useful tool to estimate sex ratios of undifferentiated juvenile eels.

  15. Sex identification using the ZFX and ZFY genes in common marmosets (Callithrix jacchus).

    PubMed

    Takabayashi, Shuji; Katoh, Hideki

    2011-01-01

    We investigated sex determination via the ZFX and ZFY genes using PCR-RFLP in the common marmoset. We designed a novel primer set to detect ZFX and ZFY. A 483-bp band from the ZFX gene and a 471-bp band from the ZFY gene were amplified. Sequencing data of the products amplified from ZFX and ZFY showed the recognition sites of two restriction enzymes, DdeI and MseI, respectively. After digestion of the products using each enzyme, we found that the band patterns between females and males were different. PCR-based sex identification might provide a tool for further breeding studies and experimental embryological studies using marmosets.

  16. Sex identification based on AMEL gene PCR amplification from blue sheep (Pseudois nayaur) fecal DNA samples.

    PubMed

    Liu, X; Yang, Y Y; Wang, X M; Liu, Z S; Wang, Z H; Ding, Y Z

    2015-08-07

    The use of noninvasive genetic sampling to identify the sex of wild animals is an extremely valuable and important tool in molecular ecology and wildlife conservation. Sex determination using the amelogenin gene has been conducted in many species because only a single pair of primers is required to amplify both X- and Y-linked alleles. However, this method has not been used in field research with the feces of wildlife. In this study, we applied this method to 222 fecal samples from wild blue sheep (Pseudois nayaur) using amelogenin primers (SE47/SE48) after testing the effectiveness of sex determination using tissue samples and fecal samples from blue sheep of known sex. We found this method to be highly reliable (80.2%) for blue sheep. Amelogenin can be used to identify the sex of wild animals using fecal samples.

  17. Mapping platypus SOX genes; autosomal location of SOX9 excludes it from sex determining role.

    PubMed

    Wallis, M C; Delbridge, M L; Pask, A J; Alsop, A E; Grutzner, F; O'Brien, P C M; Rens, W; Ferguson-Smith, M A; Graves, J A M

    2007-01-01

    In the absence of an SRY orthologue the platypus sex determining gene is unknown, so genes in the human testis determining pathway are of particular interest as candidates. SOX9 is an attractive choice because SOX9 deletions cause male-to-female sex reversal in humans and mice, and SOX9 duplications cause female-to-male sex reversal. We have localized platypus SOX9, as well as the related SOX10, to platypus chromosomes 15 and 10, respectively, the first assignments to these platypus chromosomes, and the first comparative mapping markers from human chromosomes 17 and 22. The autosomal localization of platypus SOX9 in this study contradicts the hypothesis that SOX9 acts as the sex determining switch in platypus.

  18. Molecular evolution of sex-biased genes in the Drosophila ananassae subgroup

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    Background Genes with sex-biased expression often show rapid molecular evolution between species. Previous population genetic and comparative genomic studies of Drosophila melanogaster and D. simulans revealed that male-biased genes have especially high rates of adaptive evolution. To test if this is also the case for other lineages within the melanogaster group, we investigated gene expression in D. ananassae, a species that occurs in structured populations in tropical and subtropical regions. We used custom-made microarrays and published microarray data to characterize the sex-biased expression of 129 D. ananassae genes whose D. melanogaster orthologs had been classified previously as male-biased, female-biased, or unbiased in their expression and had been studied extensively at the population-genetic level. For 43 of these genes we surveyed DNA sequence polymorphism in a natural population of D. ananassae and determined divergence to the sister species D. atripex and D. phaeopleura. Results Sex-biased expression is generally conserved between D. melanogaster and D. ananassae, with the majority of genes exhibiting the same bias in the two species. However, about one-third of the genes have either gained or lost sex-biased expression in one of the species and a small proportion of genes (~4%) have changed bias from one sex to the other. The male-biased genes of D. ananassae show evidence of positive selection acting at the protein level. However, the signal of adaptive protein evolution for male-biased genes is not as strong in D. ananassae as it is in D. melanogaster and is limited to genes with conserved male-biased expression in both species. Within D. ananassae, a significant signal of adaptive evolution is also detected for female-biased and unbiased genes. Conclusions Our findings extend previous observations of widespread adaptive protein evolution to an independent Drosophila lineage, the D. ananassae subgroup. However, the rate of adaptive evolution is

  19. Morphology, sex steroid level and gene expression analysis in gonadal sex reversal of triploid female (XXX) rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss).

    PubMed

    Xu, Gefeng; Huang, Tianqing; Jin, Xian; Cui, Cunhe; Li, Depeng; Sun, Cong; Han, Ying; Mu, Zhenbo

    2016-02-01

    In non-mammalian vertebrates, estrogens and expressions of cyp19a1 and foxl2 play critical roles in maintaining ovary differentiation and development, while dmrt1 and sox9 are male-specific genes in testicular differentiation and are highly conserved. In order to deeply understand the morphological change, sex steroids level and molecular mechanism of triploid female gonadal reversal in rainbow trout, we studied the ovary morphology, tendency of estradiol-17β (E2) and testosterone (T) levels and the relative expressions of dmrt1, cyp19a1, sox9 and foxl2 in juvenile and adult fish. Our results demonstrated that the development of triploid female gonads in rainbow trout went through arrested development, oocytes dedifferentiation, ovary reconstruction and sex reversal finally. During early gonadal development (154-334 days post-fertilization), the expressions of foxl2 and cyp19a1 increased linearly, while expressions of dmrt1 and sox9 were extremely suppressed, and E2 level was higher, while T level was lower. During the mid-to-late period of triploid female gonadal development (574-964 days post-fertilization), the expressions of dmrt1 and sox9 remained high and were very close to the quantity of diploid male genes, and T levels were even reaching diploid male plasma concentrations, while expressions of cyp19a1 and foxl2 were decreased, leading to decrease in E2 level. We realized that the development model of rainbow trout triploid female gonads was extremely rare, and the regulatory mechanism was very special. Genes involved in gonadal development and endogenous estrogens are pivotal factors in fish natural sex reversal.

  20. Sex-based differences in gene expression in hippocampus following postnatal lead exposure

    SciTech Connect

    Schneider, J.S. Anderson, D.W.; Sonnenahalli, H.; Vadigepalli, R.

    2011-10-15

    The influence of sex as an effect modifier of childhood lead poisoning has received little systematic attention. Considering the paucity of information available concerning the interactive effects of lead and sex on the brain, the current study examined the interactive effects of lead and sex on gene expression patterns in the hippocampus, a structure involved in learning and memory. Male or female rats were fed either 1500 ppm lead-containing chow or control chow for 30 days beginning at weaning.Blood lead levels were 26.7 {+-} 2.1 {mu}g/dl and 27.1 {+-} 1.7 {mu}g/dl for females and males, respectively. The expression of 175 unique genes was differentially regulated between control male and female rats. A total of 167 unique genes were differentially expressed in response to lead in either males or females. Lead exposure had a significant effect without a significant difference between male and female responses in 77 of these genes. In another set of 71 genes, there were significant differences in male vs. female response. A third set of 30 genes was differentially expressed in opposite directions in males vs. females, with the majority of genes expressed at a lower level in females than in males. Highly differentially expressed genes in males and females following lead exposure were associated with diverse biological pathways and functions. These results show that a brief exposure to lead produced significant changes in expression of a variety of genes in the hippocampus and that the response of the brain to a given lead exposure may vary depending on sex. - Highlights: > Postnatal lead exposure has a significant effect on hippocampal gene expression patterns. > At least one set of genes was affected in opposite directions in males and females. > Differentially expressed genes were associated with diverse biological pathways.

  1. Differential expression of sex-linked and autosomal germ-cell-specific genes during spermatogenesis in the mouse.

    PubMed

    Wang, P Jeremy; Page, David C; McCarrey, John R

    2005-10-01

    We have examined expression during spermatogenesis in the mouse of three Y-linked genes, 11 X-linked genes and 22 autosomal genes, all previously shown to be germ-cell-specific and expressed in premeiotic spermatogonia, plus another 21 germ-cell-specific autosomal genes that initiate expression in meiotic spermatocytes. Our data demonstrate that, like sex-linked housekeeping genes, germ-cell-specific sex-linked genes are subject to meiotic sex-chromosome inactivation (MSCI). Although all the sex-linked genes we investigated underwent MSCI, 14 of the 22 autosomal genes expressed in spermatogonia showed no decrease in expression in meiotic spermatocytes. This along with our observation that an additional 21 germ-cell-specific autosomal genes initiate or significantly up-regulate expression in spermatocytes confirms that MSCI is indeed a sex-chromosome-specific effect. Our results further demonstrate that the chromosome-wide repression imposed by MSCI is limited to meiotic spermatocytes and that postmeiotic expression of sex-linked genes is variable. Thus, 13 of the 14 sex-linked genes we examined showed some degree of postmeiotic reactivation. The extent of postmeiotic reactivation of germ-cell-specific X-linked genes did not correlate with proximity to the X inactivation center or the Xist gene locus. The implications of these findings are discussed with respect to differential gene regulation and the function of MSCI during spermatogenesis, including epigenetic programming of the future paternal genome during spermatogenesis.

  2. The Caenorhabditis Elegans Gene Sdc-2 Controls Sex Determination and Dosage Compensation in Xx Animals

    PubMed Central

    Nusbaum, C.; Meyer, B. J.

    1989-01-01

    We have identified a new X-linked gene, sdc-2, that controls the hermaphrodite (XX) modes of both sex determination and X chromosome dosage compensation in Caenorhabditis elegans. Mutations in sdc-2 cause phenotypes that appear to result from a shift of both the sex determination and dosage compensation processes in XX animals to the XO modes of expression. Twenty-eight independent sdc-2 mutations have no apparent effect in XO animals, but cause two distinct phenotypes in XX animals: masculinization, reflecting a defect in sex determination, and lethality or dumpiness, reflecting a disruption in dosage compensation. The dosage compensation defect can be demonstrated directly by showing that sdc-2 mutations cause elevated levels of several X-linked transcripts in XX but not XO animals. While the masculinization is blocked by mutations in sex determining genes required for male development (her-1 and fem-3), the lethality, dumpiness and overexpression of X-linked genes are not, indicating that the effect of sdc-2 mutations on sex determination and dosage compensation are ultimately implemented by two independent pathways. We propose a model in which sdc-2 is involved in the coordinate control of both sex determination and dosage compensation in XX animals and acts in the regulatory hierarchy at a step prior to the divergence of the two pathways. PMID:2759421

  3. Comparison of homeobox-containing genes of the honeybee and Drosophila.

    PubMed Central

    Walldorf, U; Fleig, R; Gehring, W J

    1989-01-01

    We report the isolation of seven homeobox-containing genes from the honeybee (Apis mellifera). Sequence analysis of all homeoboxes and some flanking sequences showed that six of seven genes are more than 90% identical to their corresponding Drosophila homologues within the homeobox and, with one exception, also in the flanking sequences. The homologues that were identified include three homeotic selector genes [Sex combs reduced (Scr), Antennapedia (Antp), and abdominal-A (abd-A); the two engrailed (en) genes; and the muscle segment homeobox (msh)]. Surprisingly, no homologue of the segmentation gene fushi tarazu was found in the honeybee. For the remaining bee gene, a Drosophila homologue is not known. This indicates that, with some exceptions, structurally homologous genes are involved in the control of bee and Drosophila development, although Hymenoptera differ significantly in their embryogenesis from Diptera and have evolved separately for some 250 million years. Images PMID:2574865

  4. Extraordinary Diversity in the Origins of Sex Chromosomes in Anurans Inferred from Comparative Gene Mapping.

    PubMed

    Uno, Yoshinobu; Nishida, Chizuko; Takagi, Chiyo; Igawa, Takeshi; Ueno, Naoto; Sumida, Masayuki; Matsuda, Yoichi

    2015-01-01

    Sex determination in frogs (anurans) is genetic and includes both male and female heterogamety. However, the origins of the sex chromosomes and their differentiation processes are poorly known. To investigate diversity in the origins of anuran sex chromosomes, we compared the chromosomal locations of sex-linked genes in 4 species: the African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis), the Western clawed frog (Silurana/X. tropicalis), the Japanese bell-ring frog (Buergeria buergeri), and the Japanese wrinkled frog (Rana rugosa). Comparative mapping data revealed that the sex chromosomes of X. laevis, X. tropicalis and R. rugosa are different chromosome pairs; however, the sex chromosomes of X. tropicalis and B. buergeri are homologous, although this may represent distinct evolutionary origins. We also examined the status of sex chromosomal differentiation in B. buergeri, which possesses heteromorphic ZW sex chromosomes, using comparative genomic hybridization and chromosome painting with DNA probes from the microdissected W chromosome. At least 3 rearrangement events have occurred in the proto-W chromosome: deletion of the nucleolus organizer region and a paracentric inversion followed by amplification of non-W-specific repetitive sequences.

  5. Sex-biased gene flow among elk in the greater Yellowstone ecosystem

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    , Brian K. Hand; , Shanyuan Chen; , N. Anderson; , A. Beja-Pereira; Cross, Paul C.; , M. Ebinger; , H. Edwards; , R.A. Garrott; , M.D. Kardos; Kauffman, Matthew J.; , E.L. Landguth; , A. Middleton; , B. Scurlock; , P.J. White; , P. Zager; , M.K. Schwartz; , G. Luikart

    2014-01-01

    We quantified patterns of population genetic structure to help understand gene flow among elk populations across the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. We sequenced 596 base pairs of the mitochondrial control region of 380 elk from eight populations. Analysis revealed high mitochondrial DNA variation within populations, averaging 13.0 haplotypes with high mean gene diversity (0.85). The genetic differentiation among populations for mitochondrial DNA was relatively high (FST = 0.161; P = 0.001) compared to genetic differentiation for nuclear microsatellite data (FST = 0.002; P = 0.332), which suggested relatively low female gene flow among populations. The estimated ratio of male to female gene flow (mm/mf = 46) was among the highest we have seen reported for large mammals. Genetic distance (for mitochondrial DNA pairwise FST) was not significantly correlated with geographic (Euclidean) distance between populations (Mantel’s r = 0.274, P = 0.168). Large mitochondrial DNA genetic distances (e.g., FST > 0.2) between some of the geographically closest populations (<65 km) suggested behavioral factors and/or landscape features might shape female gene flow patterns. Given the strong sex-biased gene flow, future research and conservation efforts should consider the sexes separately when modeling corridors of gene flow or predicting spread of maternally transmitted diseases. The growing availability of genetic data to compare male vs. female gene flow provides many exciting opportunities to explore the magnitude, causes, and implications of sex-biased gene flow likely to occur in many species

  6. Sex-biased gene expression and evolution of the x chromosome in nematodes.

    PubMed

    Albritton, Sarah Elizabeth; Kranz, Anna-Lena; Rao, Prashant; Kramer, Maxwell; Dieterich, Christoph; Ercan, Sevinç

    2014-07-01

    Studies of X chromosome evolution in various organisms have indicated that sex-biased genes are nonrandomly distributed between the X and autosomes. Here, to extend these studies to nematodes, we annotated and analyzed X chromosome gene content in four Caenorhabditis species and in Pristionchus pacificus. Our gene expression analyses comparing young adult male and female mRNA-seq data indicate that, in general, nematode X chromosomes are enriched for genes with high female-biased expression and depleted of genes with high male-biased expression. Genes with low sex-biased expression do not show the same trend of X chromosome enrichment and depletion. Combined with the observation that highly sex-biased genes are primarily expressed in the gonad, differential distribution of sex-biased genes reflects differences in evolutionary pressures linked to tissue-specific regulation of X chromosome transcription. Our data also indicate that X dosage imbalance between males (XO) and females (XX) is influential in shaping both expression and gene content of the X chromosome. Predicted upregulation of the single male X to match autosomal transcription (Ohno's hypothesis) is supported by our observation that overall transcript levels from the X and autosomes are similar for highly expressed genes. However, comparison of differentially located one-to-one orthologs between C. elegans and P. pacificus indicates lower expression of X-linked orthologs, arguing against X upregulation. These contradicting observations may be reconciled if X upregulation is not a global mechanism but instead acts locally on a subset of tissues and X-linked genes that are dosage sensitive.

  7. Effects of thyroid endocrine manipulation on sex-related gene expression and population sex ratios in Zebrafish

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sharma, Prakash; Tang, Song; Mayer, Gregory D.; Patino, Reynaldo

    2016-01-01

    Thyroid hormone reportedly induces masculinization of genetic females and goitrogen treatment delays testicular differentiation (ovary-to-testis transformation) in genetic males of Zebrafish. This study explored potential molecular mechanisms of these phenomena. Zebrafish were treated with thyroxine (T4, 2 nM), goitrogen [methimazole (MZ), 0.15 mM], MZ (0.15 mM) and T4 (2 nM) (rescue treatment), or reconstituted water (control) from 3 to 33 days postfertilization (dpf) and maintained in control water until 45 dpf. Whole fish were collected during early (25 dpf) and late (45 dpf) testicular differentiation for transcript abundance analysis of selected male (dmrt1, amh, ar) and female (cyp19a1a, esr1, esr2a, esr2b) sex-related genes by quantitative RT-PCR, and fold-changes relative to control values were determined. Additional fish were sampled at 45 dpf for histological assessment of gonadal sex. The T4 and rescue treatments caused male-biased populations, and T4 alone induced precocious puberty in ∼50% of males. Male-biased sex ratios were accompanied by increased expression of amh and ar and reduced expression of cyp19a1a, esr1, esr2a, and esr2b at 25 and 45 dpf and, unexpectedly, reduced expression of dmrt1 at 45 dpf. Goitrogen exposure increased the proportion of individuals with ovaries (per previous studies interpreted as delay in testicular differentiation of genetic males), and at 25 and 45 dpf reduced the expression of amh and ar and increased the expression of esr1 (only at 25 dpf), esr2a, and esr2b. Notably, cyp19a1a transcript was reduced but via non-thyroidal pathways (not restored by rescue treatment). In conclusion, the masculinizing activity of T4 at the population level may be due to its ability to inhibit female and stimulate male sex-related genes in larvae, while the inability of MZ to induce cyp19a1a, which is necessary for ovarian differentiation, may explain why its “feminizing” activity on gonadal

  8. The complex set of late transcripts from the Drosophila sex determination gene sex-lethal encodes multiple related polypeptides.

    PubMed Central

    Samuels, M E; Schedl, P; Cline, T W

    1991-01-01

    Sex-lethal (Sxl), a key sex determination gene in Drosophila melanogaster, is known to express a set of three early transcripts arising during early embryogenesis and a set of seven late transcripts occurring from midembryogenesis through adulthood. Among the late transcripts, male-specific mRNAs were distinguished from their female counterparts by the presence of an extra exon interrupting an otherwise long open reading frame (ORF). We have now analyzed the structures of the late Sxl transcripts by cDNA sequencing, Northern (RNA) blotting, primer extension, and RNase protection. The late transcripts appear to use a common 5' end but differ at their 3' ends by the use of alternative polyadenylation sites. Two of these sites lack canonical AATAAA sequences, and their use correlates in females with the presence of a functional germ line, suggesting possible tissue-specific polyadenylation. Besides the presence of the male-specific exon, no additional sex-specific splicing events were detected, although a number of non-sex-specific splicing variants were observed. In females, the various forms of late Sxl transcript potentially encode up to six slightly different polypeptides. All of the protein-coding differences occur outside the previously defined ribonucleoprotein motifs. One class of Sxl mRNAs also includes a second long ORF in the same frame as the first ORF but separated from it by a single ochre codon. The function of this second ORF is unknown. Significant amounts of apparently partially processed Sxl RNAs were observed, consistent with the hypothesis that the regulated Sxl splices occur relatively slowly. Images PMID:1710769

  9. Zfy genes are required for efficient meiotic sex chromosome inactivation (MSCI) in spermatocytes.

    PubMed

    Vernet, Nadège; Mahadevaiah, Shantha K; de Rooij, Dirk G; Burgoyne, Paul S; Ellis, Peter J I

    2016-10-13

    During spermatogenesis, germ cells that fail to synapse their chromosomes or fail to undergo meiotic sex chromosome inactivation (MSCI) are eliminated via apoptosis during mid-pachytene. Previous work showed that Y-linked genes Zfy1 and Zfy2 act as 'executioners' for this checkpoint, and that wrongful expression of either gene during pachytene triggers germ cell death. Here, we show that in mice, Zfy genes are also necessary for efficient MSCI and the sex chromosomes are not correctly silenced in Zfy-deficient spermatocytes. This unexpectedly reveals a triple role for Zfy at the mid-pachytene checkpoint in which Zfy genes first promote MSCI, then monitor its progress (since if MSCI is achieved, Zfy genes will be silenced), and finally execute cells with MSCI failure. This potentially constitutes a negative feedback loop governing this critical checkpoint mechanism.

  10. Skeletal muscle gene expression in response to resistance exercise: sex specific regulation

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background The molecular mechanisms underlying the sex differences in human muscle morphology and function remain to be elucidated. The sex differences in the skeletal muscle transcriptome in both the resting state and following anabolic stimuli, such as resistance exercise (RE), might provide insight to the contributors of sexual dimorphism of muscle phenotypes. We used microarrays to profile the transcriptome of the biceps brachii of young men and women who underwent an acute unilateral RE session following 12 weeks of progressive training. Bilateral muscle biopsies were obtained either at an early (4 h post-exercise) or late recovery (24 h post-exercise) time point. Muscle transcription profiles were compared in the resting state between men (n = 6) and women (n = 8), and in response to acute RE in trained exercised vs. untrained non-exercised control muscle for each sex and time point separately (4 h post-exercise, n = 3 males, n = 4 females; 24 h post-exercise, n = 3 males, n = 4 females). A logistic regression-based method (LRpath), following Bayesian moderated t-statistic (IMBT), was used to test gene functional groups and biological pathways enriched with differentially expressed genes. Results This investigation identified extensive sex differences present in the muscle transcriptome at baseline and following acute RE. In the resting state, female muscle had a greater transcript abundance of genes involved in fatty acid oxidation and gene transcription/translation processes. After strenuous RE at the same relative intensity, the time course of the transcriptional modulation was sex-dependent. Males experienced prolonged changes while females exhibited a rapid restoration. Most of the biological processes involved in the RE-induced transcriptional regulation were observed in both males and females, but sex specificity was suggested for several signaling pathways including activation of notch signaling and TGF-beta signaling in females. Sex differences in

  11. Sex differences in kidney gene expression during the life cycle of F344 rats

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The kidney functions in key physiological processes to filter blood and regulate blood pressure via key molecular transporters and ion channels. Sex-specific differences have been observed in renal disease incidence and progression, as well as acute kidney injury in response to certain drugs. Although advances have been made in characterizing the molecular components involved in various kidney functions, the molecular mechanisms responsible for sex differences are not well understood. We hypothesized that the basal expression levels of genes involved in various kidney functions throughout the life cycle will influence sex-specific susceptibilities to adverse renal events. Methods Whole genome microarray gene expression analysis was performed on kidney samples collected from untreated male and female Fischer 344 (F344) rats at eight age groups between 2 and 104 weeks of age. Results A combined filtering approach using statistical (ANOVA or pairwise t test, FDR 0.05) and fold-change criteria (>1.5 relative fold change) was used to identify 7,447 unique differentially expressed genes (DEGs). Principal component analysis (PCA) of the 7,447 DEGs revealed sex-related differences in mRNA expression at early (2 weeks), middle (8, 15, and 21 weeks), and late (104 weeks) ages in the rat life cycle. Functional analysis (Ingenuity Pathway Analysis) of these sex-different genes indicated over-representation of specific pathways and networks including renal tubule injury, drug metabolism, and immune cell and inflammatory responses. The mRNAs that code for the qualified urinary protein kidney biomarkers KIM-1, Clu, Tff3, and Lcn2 were also observed to show sex differences. Conclusions These data represent one of the most comprehensive in-life time course studies to be published, assessing sex differences in global gene expression in the F344 rat kidney. PCA and Venn analyses reveal specific periods of sexually dimorphic gene expression which are associated with

  12. Sex-Specificity of Mineralocorticoid Target Gene Expression during Renal Development, and Long-Term Consequences

    PubMed Central

    Dumeige, Laurence; Storey, Caroline; Decourtye, Lyvianne; Nehlich, Melanie; Lhadj, Christophe; Viengchareun, Say; Kappeler, Laurent; Lombès, Marc; Martinerie, Laetitia

    2017-01-01

    Sex differences have been identified in various biological processes, including hypertension. The mineralocorticoid signaling pathway is an important contributor to early arterial hypertension, however its sex-specific expression has been scarcely studied, particularly with respect to the kidney. Basal systolic blood pressure (SBP) and heart rate (HR) were measured in adult male and female mice. Renal gene expression studies of major players of mineralocorticoid signaling were performed at different developmental stages in male and female mice using reverse transcription quantitative PCR (RT-qPCR), and were compared to those of the same genes in the lung, another mineralocorticoid epithelial target tissue that regulates ion exchange and electrolyte balance. The role of sex hormones in the regulation of these genes was also investigated in differentiated KC3AC1 renal cells. Additionally, renal expression of the 11 β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type 2 (11βHSD2) protein, a regulator of mineralocorticoid specificity, was measured by immunoblotting and its activity was indirectly assessed in the plasma using liquid-chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry in tandem (LC-MSMS) method. SBP and HR were found to be significantly lower in females compared to males. This was accompanied by a sex- and tissue-specific expression profile throughout renal development of the mineralocorticoid target genes serum and glucocorticoid-regulated kinase 1 (Sgk1) and glucocorticoid-induced leucine zipper protein (Gilz), together with Hsd11b2, Finally, the implication of sex hormones in this sex-specific expression profile was demonstrated in vitro, most notably for Gilz mRNA expression. We demonstrate a tissue-specific, sex-dependent and developmentally-regulated pattern of expression of the mineralocorticoid pathway that could have important implications in physiology and pathology. PMID:28230786

  13. Effects of tamoxifen on the sex determination gene and the activation of sex reversal in the developing gonad of mice.

    PubMed

    Yu, Mingxi; Wang, Jingyun; Liu, Wei; Qin, Junwen; Zhou, Quan; Wang, Yongan; Huang, Huihui; Chen, Wenli; Ma, Chao

    2014-07-03

    Tamoxifen, as well as most endocrine-disrupting chemicals, affects the reproductive system and sexual development, but little is known about its disruption of the molecular pathways regulating mammalian sex determination. In fetal mice, the expression levels and pattern of key genes involved in controlling sexually dimorphic balance were analyzed both in vivo and in vitro by using whole-mount in situ hybridization and quantitative-PCR. Developmental tamoxifen exposure induced abnormal up-regulation of the testis differentiation marker Pdfgra in Leydig cells and of Sox9 and Fgf9 in Sertoli cells in XX gonad. Immunohistochemistry analysis confirmed the over-expression of SOX9 protein. Accordingly, the ovary development marker Foxl2 was depressed at both the mRNA and protein levels. The increase in testosterone and the reduction in 17β-estradiol and progesterone were observed by using the in vitro assay with organotypic cultures. Taken together, results indicated that tamoxifen induced the ectopic expression of well-established sex-specific genes during the critical developmental period, thus resulting in abnormal testicular development in the XX gonad of mammals. This study facilitates a better understanding of the molecular mechanisms of antiestrogens and possibly of compounds that interrupt estrogen signaling by other modes of action, and the association with the pathogenesis of human sexual developmental disorders.

  14. Gene-gene and gene-sex epistatic interactions of DNMT1, DNMT3A and DNMT3B in autoimmune thyroid disease.

    PubMed

    Cai, Tian-Tian; Zhang, Jian; Wang, Xuan; Song, Rong-Hua; Qin, Qiu; Muhali, Fatuma-Said; Zhou, Jiao-Zhen; Xu, Jian; Zhang, Jin-An

    2016-07-30

    The aim of this study was to investigate the associations of DNA methyltransferases (DNMTs) polymorphisms with susceptibility to autoimmune thyroid diseases (AITDs) and to test gene-gene/gene-sex epistasis interactions. Eight single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in DNMT1, DNMT3A and DNMT3B were selected and genotyped by multiplex polymerase chain reaction combined with ligase detection reaction method (PCR-LDR). A total of 685 Graves' disease (GD) patients, 353 Hashimoto's thyroiditis (HT) patients and 909 healthy controls were included in the final analysis. Epistasis was tested by additive model, multiplicative model and general multifactor dimensionality reduction (general MDR). Rs2424913 (DNMT3B) and rs2228611 (DNMT1) were associated with susceptibility to AITD and GD in the dominant and overdominant model, respectively (rs2424913: P=0.009 for AITD, P=0.0041 for GD; rs2228611: P=0.035 for AITD, P=0.043 for GD). Multiplicative and multiple high dimensional gene-gene or gene-sex interactions were also observed in this study. We have found evidence for a potential role of rs2424913 (DNMT3B) and rs2228611 (DNMT1) in AITD susceptibility and identified novel gene-gene/gene-sex interactions in AITD. Our study may highlight sex and genes of DNMTs family as contributors to the pathogenesis of AITD.

  15. Molecular analyses of circadian gene variants reveal sex-dependent links between depression and clocks

    PubMed Central

    Shi, S-q; White, M J; Borsetti, H M; Pendergast, J S; Hida, A; Ciarleglio, C M; de Verteuil, P A; Cadar, A G; Cala, C; McMahon, D G; Shelton, R C; Williams, S M; Johnson, C H

    2016-01-01

    An extensive literature links circadian irregularities and/or sleep abnormalities to mood disorders. Despite the strong genetic component underlying many mood disorders, however, previous genetic associations between circadian clock gene variants and major depressive disorder (MDD) have been weak. We applied a combined molecular/functional and genetic association approach to circadian gene polymorphisms in sex-stratified populations of control subjects and case subjects suffering from MDD. This approach identified significant sex-dependent associations of common variants of the circadian clock genes hClock, hPer3 and hNpas2 with major depression and demonstrated functional effects of these polymorphisms on the expression or activity of the hCLOCK and hPER3 proteins, respectively. In addition, hCLOCK expression is affected by glucocorticoids, consistent with the sex-dependency of the genetic associations and the modulation of glucocorticoid-mediated stress response, providing a mechanism by which the circadian clock controls outputs that may affect psychiatric disorders. We conclude that genetic polymorphisms in circadian genes (especially hClock and hPer3, where functional assays could be tested) influence risk of developing depression in a sex- and stress-dependent manner. These studies support a genetic connection between circadian disruption and mood disorders, and confirm a key connection between circadian gene variation and major depression. PMID:26926884

  16. Molecular analyses of circadian gene variants reveal sex-dependent links between depression and clocks.

    PubMed

    Shi, S-q; White, M J; Borsetti, H M; Pendergast, J S; Hida, A; Ciarleglio, C M; de Verteuil, P A; Cadar, A G; Cala, C; McMahon, D G; Shelton, R C; Williams, S M; Johnson, C H

    2016-03-01

    An extensive literature links circadian irregularities and/or sleep abnormalities to mood disorders. Despite the strong genetic component underlying many mood disorders, however, previous genetic associations between circadian clock gene variants and major depressive disorder (MDD) have been weak. We applied a combined molecular/functional and genetic association approach to circadian gene polymorphisms in sex-stratified populations of control subjects and case subjects suffering from MDD. This approach identified significant sex-dependent associations of common variants of the circadian clock genes hClock, hPer3 and hNpas2 with major depression and demonstrated functional effects of these polymorphisms on the expression or activity of the hCLOCK and hPER3 proteins, respectively. In addition, hCLOCK expression is affected by glucocorticoids, consistent with the sex-dependency of the genetic associations and the modulation of glucocorticoid-mediated stress response, providing a mechanism by which the circadian clock controls outputs that may affect psychiatric disorders. We conclude that genetic polymorphisms in circadian genes (especially hClock and hPer3, where functional assays could be tested) influence risk of developing depression in a sex- and stress-dependent manner. These studies support a genetic connection between circadian disruption and mood disorders, and confirm a key connection between circadian gene variation and major depression.

  17. Gene expression of chicken gonads is sex- and side-specific.

    PubMed

    Scheider, Jessica; Afonso-Grunz, Fabian; Hoffmeier, Klaus; Horres, Ralf; Groher, Florian; Rycak, Lukas; Oehlmann, Jörg; Winter, Peter

    2014-01-01

    In chicken, the left and right female gonads undergo a completely different program during development. To learn more about the molecular factors underlying side-specific development and to identify potential sex- and side-specific genes in developing gonads, we separately performed next-generation sequencing-based deepSuperSAGE transcription profiling from left and right, female and male gonads of 19-day-old chicken embryos. A total of 836 transcript variants were significantly differentially expressed (p < 10(-5)) between combined male and female gonads. Left-right comparison revealed 1,056 and 822 differentially (p < 10(-5)) expressed transcript variants for male and female gonads, respectively, of which 72 are side-specific in both sexes. At least some of these may represent key players for lateral development in birds. Additionally, several genes with laterally differential expression in the ovaries seem to determine female gonads for growth or regression, whereas right-left differences in testes are mostly limited to the differentially expressed genes present in both sexes. With a few exceptions, side-specific genes are not located on the sex chromosomes. The large differences in lateral gene expression in the ovaries in almost all metabolic pathways suggest that the regressing right gonad might have undergone a change of function during evolution.

  18. Genetic variants in sex hormone metabolic pathway genes and risk of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma

    PubMed Central

    Hyland, Paula L.

    2013-01-01

    In China, esophageal cancer is the fourth leading cause of cancer death where essentially all cases are histologically esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC), in contrast to esophageal adenocarcinoma in the West. Globally, ESCC is 2.4 times more common among men than women and recently it has been suggested that sex hormones may be associated with the risk of ESCC. We examined the association between genetic variants in sex hormone metabolic genes and ESCC risk in a population from north central China with high-incidence rates. A total of 1026 ESCC cases and 1452 controls were genotyped for 797 unique tag single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in 51 sex hormone metabolic genes. SNP-, gene- and pathway-based associations with ESCC risk were evaluated using unconditional logistic regression adjusted for age, sex and geographical location and the adaptive rank truncated product (ARTP) method. Statistical significance was determined through use of permutation for pathway- and gene-based associations. No associations were observed for the overall sex hormone metabolic pathway (P = 0.14) or subpathways (androgen synthesis: P = 0.30, estrogen synthesis: P = 0.15 and estrogen removal: P = 0.19) with risk of ESCC. However, six individual genes (including SULT2B1, CYP1B1, CYP3A7, CYP3A5, SHBG and CYP11A1) were significantly associated with ESCC risk (P < 0.05). Our examination of genetic variation in the sex hormone metabolic pathway is consistent with a potential association with risk of ESCC. These positive findings warrant further evaluation in relation to ESCC risk and replication in other populations. PMID:23358850

  19. Differential expression analysis of genes involved in high-temperature induced sex differentiation in Nile tilapia.

    PubMed

    Li, Chun Ge; Wang, Hui; Chen, Hong Ju; Zhao, Yan; Fu, Pei Sheng; Ji, Xiang Shan

    2014-01-01

    Nowadays, high temperature effects on the molecular pathways during sex differentiation in teleosts need to be deciphered. In this study, a systematic differential expression analysis of genes involved in high temperature-induced sex differentiation was done in the Nile tilapia gonad and brain. Our results showed that high temperature caused significant down-regulation of CYP19A1A in the gonad of both sexes in induction group, and FOXL2 in the ovary of the induction group. The expressions of GTHα, LHβ and ERα were also significantly down-regulated in the brain of both sexes in the induction and recovery groups. On the contrary, the expression of CYP11B2 was significantly up-regulated in the ovary, but not in the testis in both groups. Spearman rank correlation analysis showed that there are significant correlations between the expressions of CYP19A1A, FOXL2, or DMRT1 in the gonads and the expression of some genes in the brain. Another result in this study showed that high temperature up-regulated the expression level of DNMT1 in the testis of the induction group, and DNMT1 and DNMT3A in the female brain of both groups. The expression and correlation analysis of HSPs showed that high temperature action on tilapia HSPs might indirectly induce the expression changes of sex differentiation genes in the gonads. These findings provide new insights on TSD and suggest that sex differentiation related genes, heat shock proteins, and DNA methylation genes are new candidates for studying TSD in fish species.

  20. Sex Steroids Regulate Expression of Genes Containing Long Interspersed Elements-1s in Breast Cancer Cells.

    PubMed

    Chaiwongwatanakul, Saichon; Yanatatsaneejit, Pattamawadee; Tongsima, Sissades; Mutirangura, Apiwat; Boonyaratanakornkit, Viroj

    2016-01-01

    Long interspersed elements-1s (LINE-1s) are dispersed all over the human genome. There is evidence that hypomethylation of LINE-1s and levels of sex steroids regulate gene expression leading to cancer development. Here, we compared mRNA levels of genes containing an intragenic LINE-1 in breast cancer cells treated with various sex steroids from Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO), with the gene expression database using chi-square analysis (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/geo). We evaluated whether sex steroids influence expression of genes containing an intragenic LINE-1. Three sex steroids at various concentrations, 1 and 10 nM estradiol (E2), 10 nM progesterone (PG) and 10 nM androgen (AN), were assessed. In breast cancer cells treated with 1 or 10 nM E2, a significant percentage of genes containing an intragenic LINE-1 were down-regulated. A highly significant percentage of E2-regulated genes containing an intragenic LINE-1 was down-regulated in cells treated with 1 nM E2 for 3 hours (<3.70E-25; OR=1.91; 95% CI=2.16-1.69). Similarly, high percentages of PG or AN- regulated genes containing an intragenic LINE-1 were also down-regulated in cells treated with 10 nM PG or 10 nM AN for 16 hr (p=9.53E-06; OR=1.65; 95% CI=2.06-1.32 and p=3.81E-14; OR=2.01; 95% CI=2.42-1.67). Interestingly, a significant percentage of AN-regulated genes containing an intragenic LINE-1 was up-regulated in cells treated with 10 nM AN for 16 hr (p=4.03E-02; OR=1.40; 95% CI=1.95-1.01). These findings suggest that intragenic LINE-1s may play roles in sex steroid mediated gene expression in breast cancer cells, which could have significant implications for the development and progression of sex steroid-dependent cancers.

  1. The roles of Dmrt (Double sex/Male-abnormal-3 Related Transcription factor) genes in sex determination and differentiation mechanisms: Ubiquity and diversity across the animal kingdom.

    PubMed

    Picard, Marion Anne-Lise; Cosseau, Céline; Mouahid, Gabriel; Duval, David; Grunau, Christoph; Toulza, Ève; Allienne, Jean-François; Boissier, Jérôme

    2015-07-01

    The Dmrt (Double sex/Male-abnormal-3 Related Transcription factor) genes have been intensively studied because they represent major transcription factors in the pathways governing sex determination and differentiation. These genes have been identified in animal groups ranging from cnidarians to mammals, and some of the genes functionally studied. Here, we propose to analyze (i) the presence/absence of various Dmrt gene groups in the different taxa across the animal kingdom; (ii) the relative expression levels of the Dmrt genes in each sex; (iii) the specific spatial (by organ) and temporal (by developmental stage) variations in gene expression. This review considers non-mammalian animals at all levels of study (i.e. no particular importance is given to animal models), and using all types of sexual strategy (hermaphroditic or gonochoric) and means of sex determination (i.e. genetic or environmental). To conclude this global comparison, we offer an analysis of the DM domains conserved among the different DMRT proteins, and propose a general sex-specific pattern for each member of the Dmrt gene family.

  2. Transcriptional sexual dimorphism in elongating bovine embryos: implications for XCI and sex determination genes.

    PubMed

    Bermejo-Alvarez, P; Rizos, D; Lonergan, P; Gutierrez-Adan, A

    2011-06-01

    Sex chromosome transcripts can lead to a broad transcriptional sexual dimorphism in the absence of concomitant or previous exposure to sex hormones, especially when X-chromosome inactivation (XCI) is not complete. XCI timing has been suggested to differ greatly among species, and in bovine, most of the X-linked transcripts are upregulated in female blastocysts. To determine the timing of XCI, we analyzed in day 14 bovine embryos the sexual dimorphic transcription of seven X-linked genes known to be upregulated in female blastocysts (X24112, brain-expressed X-linked 2 (BEX2), ubiquitin-conjugating enzyme E2A (UBE2A), glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD), brain-expressed X-linked 1 (BEX1), calpain 6 (CAPN6), and spermidine/spermine N-acetyltransferase 1 (SAT1)). The transcription of five genes whose expression differs between sexes at the blastocyst stage (DNMT3A, interferon tau (IFNT2), glutathione S-transferase mu 3 (GSTM3), progesterone receptor membrane component 1 (PGRMC1), and laminin alpha 1 (LAMA1)) and four genes related with sex determination (Wilms tumor 1 (WT1), gata binding protein 4 (GATA4), zinc finger protein multitype 2 (ZFPM2), and DMRT1) was also analyzed to determine the evolution of transcriptional sexual dimorphism. The expression level of five X-linked transcripts was effectively equalized among sexes suggesting that, in cattle, a substantial XCI occurs during the period between blastocyst hatching and initiation of elongation, although UBE2A and SAT1 displayed significant transcriptional differences. Similarly, sexual dimorphism was also reduced for autosomal genes with only DNMT3A and IFNT2 exhibiting sex-related differences. Among the genes potentially involved in sex determination, Wilms tumor 1 (WT1) was significantly upregulated in males and GATA4 in females, whereas no differences were observed for ZFPM2 and DMRT1. In conclusion, a major XCI occurred between the blastocyst and early elongation stages leading to a reduction in the

  3. Transcription Regulation of Sex-Biased Genes during Ontogeny in the Malaria Vector Anopheles gambiae

    PubMed Central

    Windbichler, Nikolai; Papathanos, Philippos-Aris; Nolan, Tony; Dottorini, Tania; Rizzi, Ermanno; Christophides, George K.; Crisanti, Andrea

    2011-01-01

    In Anopheles gambiae, sex-regulated genes are responsible for controlling gender dimorphism and are therefore crucial in determining the ability of female mosquitoes to transmit human malaria. The identification and functional characterization of these genes will shed light on the sexual development and maturation of mosquitoes and provide useful targets for genetic control measures aimed at reducing mosquito fertility and/or distorting the sex ratio. We conducted a genome wide transcriptional analysis of sex-regulated genes from early developmental stages through adulthood combined with functional screening of novel gonadal genes. Our results demonstrate that the male-biased genes undergo a major transcription turnover starting from larval stages to adulthood. The male biased genes at the adult stage include a significant high number of unique sequences compared to the rest of the genome. This is in contrast to female-biased genes that are much more conserved and are mainly activated during late developmental stages. The high frequency of unique sequences would indicate that male-biased genes evolve more rapidly than the rest of the genome. This finding is particularly intriguing because A. gambiae is a strictly female monogamous species suggesting that driving forces in addition to sperm competition must account for the rapid evolution of male-biased genes. We have also identified and functionally characterized a number of previously unknown A. gambiae testis- and ovary-specific genes. Two of these genes, zero population growth and a suppressor of defective silencing 3 domain of the histone deacetylase co-repressor complex, were shown to play a key role in gonad development. PMID:21738713

  4. Sex Differences in Spatial Ability: The X-Linked Gene Theory.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Blatter, Patricia

    1982-01-01

    Among the many theories attempting to explain sex differences in spatial ability, one of the most highly researched is the X-linked recessive gene theory. This is a review of the major research done on that theory and shows the conflicting nature of the results. (Author)

  5. De novo transcriptome sequencing to identify the sex-determination genes in Hyriopsis schlegelii.

    PubMed

    Shi, Jianwu; Hong, Yijiang; Sheng, Junqing; Peng, Kou; Wang, Junhua

    2015-01-01

    This study presents the first analysis of expressed transcripts in the spermary and ovary of Hyriopsis schlegelii (H. schlegelii). A total of 132,055 unigenes were obtained and 31,781 of these genes were annotated. In addition, 19,511 upregulated and 25,911 downregulated unigenes were identified in the spermary. Ten sex-determination genes were selected and further analyzed by real-time PCR. In addition, mammalian genes reported to govern sex-determination pathways, including Sry, Dmrt1, Dmrt2, Sox9, GATA4, and WT1 in males and Wnt4, Rspo1, Foxl2, and β-catenin in females, were also identified in H. schlegelii. These results suggest that H. schlegelii and mammals use similar gene regulatory mechanisms to control sex determination. Moreover, genes associated with dosage compensation mechanisms, such as Msl1, Msl2, and Msl3, and hermaphrodite phenotypes, such as Tra-1, Tra-2α, Tra-2β, Fem1A, Fem1B, and Fem1C, were also identified in H. schlegelii. The identification of these genes indicates that diverse regulatory mechanisms regulate sexual polymorphism in H. schlegelii.

  6. Selection and evaluation of reference genes for analysis of mouse (Mus musculus) sex-dimorphic brain development

    PubMed Central

    Cheung, Tanya T.; Weston, Mitchell K.

    2017-01-01

    The development of the brain is sex-dimorphic, and as a result so are many neurological disorders. One approach for studying sex-dimorphic brain development is to measure gene expression in biological samples using RT-qPCR. However, the accuracy and consistency of this technique relies on the reference gene(s) selected. We analyzed the expression of ten reference genes in male and female samples over three stages of brain development, using popular algorithms NormFinder, GeNorm and Bestkeeper. The top ranked reference genes at each time point were further used to quantify gene expression of three sex-dimorphic genes (Wnt10b, Xist and CYP7B1). When comparing gene expression between the sexes expression at specific time points the best reference gene combinations are: Sdha/Pgk1 at E11.5, RpL38/Sdha E12.5, and Actb/RpL37 at E15.5. When studying expression across time, the ideal reference gene(s) differs with sex. For XY samples a combination of Actb/Sdha. In contrast, when studying gene expression across developmental stage with XX samples, Sdha/Gapdh were the top reference genes. Our results identify the best combination of two reference genes when studying male and female brain development, and emphasize the importance of selecting the correct reference genes for comparisons between developmental stages. PMID:28133578

  7. Influence of Sex on Basal and Dickkopf-1 Regulated Gene Expression in the Bovine Morula

    PubMed Central

    Denicol, Anna C.; Leão, Beatriz C. S.; Dobbs, Kyle B.; Mingoti, Gisele Z.; Hansen, Peter J.

    2015-01-01

    Sex affects function of the developing mammalian embryo as early as the preimplantation period. There were two goals of the current objective. The first was to determine the degree and nature of differences in gene expression between female and male embryos in the cow at the morula stage of development. The second objective was to determine whether DKK1, a molecule known to alter differentiation of the blastocyst, would affect gene expression differently for female and male morulae. In Experiment 1, female and male embryos were treated with DKK1 at Day 5 after insemination. Morulae were harvested 24 h after treatment, pooled in groups of 20 for microarray analysis and RNA subjected to analysis of gene expression by microarray hybridization. There were 662 differentially expressed genes between females and males and 128 of these genes had a fold change ≥ 1.5 between the two sexes. Of the genes upregulated in females, 49.5% were located in the X chromosome. Functional analysis predicted that cell survival was greater in female embryos. Experiment 2 involved a similar design except that transcripts for 12 genes previously reported to be affected by sex, DKK1 or the interaction were quantified by quantitative polymerase chain reaction. Expression of all genes tested that were affected by sex in experiment 1 was affected in a similar manner in Experiment 2. In contrast, effects of DKK1 on gene expression were largely not repeatable in Experiment 2. The exception was for the Hippo signaling gene AMOT, which was inhibited by DKK1. In Experiment 3, embryos produced by fertilization with unsorted sperm were treated with DKK1 at Day 5 and abundance of transcripts for CDX2, GATA6, and NANOG determined at Days 5, 6 and 7 after insemination. There was no effect of DKK1 on expression of any of the three genes. In conclusion, female and male bovine embryos have a different pattern of gene expression as early as the morula stage, and this is due to a large extent to expression

  8. Influence of Sex on Basal and Dickkopf-1 Regulated Gene Expression in the Bovine Morula.

    PubMed

    Denicol, Anna C; Leão, Beatriz C S; Dobbs, Kyle B; Mingoti, Gisele Z; Hansen, Peter J

    2015-01-01

    Sex affects function of the developing mammalian embryo as early as the preimplantation period. There were two goals of the current objective. The first was to determine the degree and nature of differences in gene expression between female and male embryos in the cow at the morula stage of development. The second objective was to determine whether DKK1, a molecule known to alter differentiation of the blastocyst, would affect gene expression differently for female and male morulae. In Experiment 1, female and male embryos were treated with DKK1 at Day 5 after insemination. Morulae were harvested 24 h after treatment, pooled in groups of 20 for microarray analysis and RNA subjected to analysis of gene expression by microarray hybridization. There were 662 differentially expressed genes between females and males and 128 of these genes had a fold change ≥ 1.5 between the two sexes. Of the genes upregulated in females, 49.5% were located in the X chromosome. Functional analysis predicted that cell survival was greater in female embryos. Experiment 2 involved a similar design except that transcripts for 12 genes previously reported to be affected by sex, DKK1 or the interaction were quantified by quantitative polymerase chain reaction. Expression of all genes tested that were affected by sex in experiment 1 was affected in a similar manner in Experiment 2. In contrast, effects of DKK1 on gene expression were largely not repeatable in Experiment 2. The exception was for the Hippo signaling gene AMOT, which was inhibited by DKK1. In Experiment 3, embryos produced by fertilization with unsorted sperm were treated with DKK1 at Day 5 and abundance of transcripts for CDX2, GATA6, and NANOG determined at Days 5, 6 and 7 after insemination. There was no effect of DKK1 on expression of any of the three genes. In conclusion, female and male bovine embryos have a different pattern of gene expression as early as the morula stage, and this is due to a large extent to expression

  9. Sex pheromone production and perception in European corn borer moths is determined by both autosomal and sex-linked genes

    PubMed Central

    Roelofs, Wendell; Glover, Thomas; Tang, Xian-Han; Sreng, Isabelle; Robbins, Paul; Eckenrode, Charles; Löfstedt, Christer; Hansson, Bill S.; Bengtsson, Bengt O.

    1987-01-01

    Inheritance patterns for sex pheromone production in females, pheromone detection on male antennal olfactory receptor cells, and male pheromone behavioral responses were studied in pheromonally distinct populations of European corn borers from New York State. Gas chromatographic analyses of pheromone glands, single sensillum recordings, and flight tunnel behavioral analyses were carried out on progeny from reciprocal crosses, as well as on progeny from subsequent F2 and maternal and paternal backcrosses. The data show that the production of the female pheromone blend primarily is controlled by a single autosomal factor, that pheromone-responding olfactory cells are controlled by another autosomal factor, and that behavioral response to pheromone is controlled by a sex-linked gene. F1 males were found to possess olfactory receptor cells that give spike amplitudes to the two pheromone isomers that are intermediate to those of the high and low amplitude cells of the parent populations. Fifty-five percent of the F1 males tested responded fully to pheromone sources ranging from the hybrid (E)-11-tetradecenyl acetate/(Z)-11-tetradecenyl acetate (E/Z) molar blend of 65:35 to the E/Z molar blend of 3:97 for the Z morph parents, but very few responded to the E/Z molar blend of 99:1 for the E morph parents. Data on the inheritance patterns support speculation that the Z morph is the ancestral and that the E morph is the derived European corn borer population. PMID:16593886

  10. Deficit of mitonuclear genes on the human X chromosome predates sex chromosome formation.

    PubMed

    Dean, Rebecca; Zimmer, Fabian; Mank, Judith E

    2015-01-29

    Two taxa studied to date, the therian mammals and Caenorhabditis elegans, display underrepresentations of mitonuclear genes (mt-N genes, nuclear genes whose products are imported to and act within the mitochondria) on their X chromosomes. This pattern has been interpreted as the result of sexual conflict driving mt-N genes off of the X chromosome. However, studies in several other species have failed to detect a convergent biased distribution of sex-linked mt-N genes, leading to questions over the generality of the role of sexual conflict in shaping the distribution of mt-N genes. Here we tested whether mt-N genes moved off of the therian X chromosome following sex chromosome formation, consistent with the role of sexual conflict, or whether the paucity of mt-N genes on the therian X is a chance result of an underrepresentation on the ancestral regions that formed the X chromosome. We used a synteny-based approach to identify the ancestral regions in the platypus and chicken genomes that later formed the therian X chromosome. We then quantified the movement of mt-N genes on and off of the X chromosome and the distribution of mt-N genes on the human X and ancestral X regions. We failed to find an excess of mt-N gene movement off of the X. The bias of mt-N genes on ancestral therian X chromosomes was also not significantly different from the biases on the human X. Together our results suggest that, rather than conflict driving mt-N genes off of the mammalian X, random biases on chromosomes that formed the X chromosome could explain the paucity of mt-N genes in the therian lineage.

  11. The candidate sex-reversing DAX1 gene is autosomal in marsupials: implications for the evolution of sex determination in mammals.

    PubMed

    Pask, A; Toder, R; Wilcox, S A; Camerino, G; Graves, J A

    1997-05-01

    The human X-linked DAX1 gene was cloned from the region of the short arm of the human X found in duplicate in sex-reversed Xdup Y females (E. Zanaria et al., 1994, Nature 372: 635-641). DAX1 is suggested to be required for ovarian differentiation and to play an important role in mammalian sex determination or differentiation pathways. Its proposed dose-dependent effect on sexual development suggests that DAX1 could represent an evolutionary link with an ancestral sex-determining mechanism that depended on the dosage of an X-linked gene. Furthermore, DAX1 could also represent the putative X-linked switch gene, which independently controls sexual dimorphisms in marsupial mammals in an X-dose-dependent manner (D.W. Cooper et al., 1993, Semin. Dev. 4: 117-128). If DAX1 has a present role in marsupial sexual differentiation or had an ancestral role in mammalian sex determination, it would be expected to lie on the marsupial X chromosome, despite the autosomal localization of other human Xp genes. We therefore cloned and mapped the DAX1 gene in the tammar wallaby (Macropus eugenii). DAX1 was located on wallaby chromosome 5p near other human Xp genes, indicating that it was originally autosomal and that it is not involved in X-linked dose-dependent sex determination in an ancestral mammal nor in marsupial sexual differentiation.

  12. The candidate sex-reversing DAX1 gene is autosomal in marsupials: Implications for the evolution of sex determination in mammals

    SciTech Connect

    Pask, A.; Toder, R.; Wilcox, S.A.

    1997-05-01

    The human X-linked DAX1 gene was cloned from the region of the short arm of the human X found in duplicate in sex-reversed X{sub dup}Y females. DAX1 is suggested to be required for ovarian differentiation and to play an important role in mammalian sex determination or differentiation pathways. Its proposed dose-dependent effect on sexual development suggests that DAX1 could represent an evolutionary link with an ancestral sex-determining mechanism that depended on the dosage of an X-linked gene. Furthermore, DAX1 could also represent the putative X-linked switch gene, which independently controls sexual dimorphisms in marsupial mammals in an X-dose-dependent manner. If DAX1 has a present role in marsupial sexual differentiation or had an ancestral role in mammalian sex determination, it would be expected to lie on the marsupial X chromosome, despite the autosomal localization of other human Xp genes. We therefore cloned and mapped the DAX1 gene in the tammar wallaby (Macropus eugenii). DAX1 was located on wallaby chromosome 5p near other human Xp genes, indicating that it was originally autosomal and that it is not involved in X-linked dose-dependent sex determination in an ancestral mammal nor in marsupial sexual differentiation. 28 refs., 4 figs.

  13. Complete Dosage Compensation in Anopheles stephensi and the Evolution of Sex-Biased Genes in Mosquitoes

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Xiaofang; Biedler, James K.; Qi, Yumin; Hall, Andrew Brantley; Tu, Zhijian

    2015-01-01

    Complete dosage compensation refers to hyperexpression of the entire X or Z chromosome in organisms with heterogametic sex chromosomes (XY male or ZW female) in order to compensate for having only one copy of the X or Z chromosome. Recent analyses suggest that complete dosage compensation, as in Drosophila melanogaster, may not be the norm. There has been no systematic study focusing on dosage compensation in mosquitoes. However, analysis of dosage compensation in Anopheles mosquitoes provides opportunities for evolutionary insights, as the X chromosome of Anopheles and that of its Dipteran relative, D. melanogaster formed independently from the same ancestral chromosome. Furthermore, Culicinae mosquitoes, including the Aedes genus, have homomorphic sex-determining chromosomes, negating the need for dosage compensation. Thus, Culicinae genes provide a rare phylogenetic context to investigate dosage compensation in Anopheles mosquitoes. Here, we performed RNA-seq analysis of male and female samples of the Asian malaria mosquito Anopheles stephensi and the yellow fever mosquito Aedes aegypti. Autosomal and X-linked genes in An. stephensi showed very similar levels of expression in both males and females, indicating complete dosage compensation. The uniformity of average expression levels of autosomal and X-linked genes remained when An. stephensi gene expression was normalized by that of their Ae. aegypti orthologs, strengthening the finding of complete dosage compensation in Anopheles. In addition, we comparatively analyzed the differentially expressed genes between adult males and adult females in both species, investigated sex-biased gene chromosomal distribution patterns in An. stephensi and provided three examples where gene duplications may have enabled the acquisition of sex-specific expression during mosquito evolution. PMID:26078263

  14. Drosophila switch gene Sex-lethal can bypass its switch-gene target transformer to regulate aspects of female behavior.

    PubMed

    Evans, Daniel S; Cline, Thomas W

    2013-11-19

    The switch gene Sex-lethal (Sxl) was thought to elicit all aspects of Drosophila female somatic differentiation other than size dimorphism by controlling only the switch gene transformer (tra). Here we show instead that Sxl controls an aspect of female sexual behavior by acting on a target other than or in addition to tra. We inferred the existence of this unknown Sxl target from the observation that a constitutively feminizing tra transgene that restores fertility to tra(-) females failed to restore fertility to Sxl-mutant females that were adult viable but functionally tra(-). The sterility of these mutant females was caused by an ovulation failure. Because tra expression is not sufficient to render these Sxl-mutant females fertile, we refer to this pathway as the tra-insufficient feminization (TIF) branch of the sex-determination regulatory pathway. Using a transgene that conditionally expresses two Sxl feminizing isoforms, we find that the TIF branch is required developmentally for neurons that also sex-specifically express fruitless, a tra gene target controlling sexual behavior. Thus, in a subset of fruitless neurons, targets of the TIF and tra pathways appear to collaborate to control ovulation. In most insects, Sxl has no sex-specific functions, and tra, rather than Sxl, is both the target of the primary sex signal and the gene that maintains the female developmental commitment via positive autoregulation. The TIF pathway may represent an ancestral female-specific function acquired by Sxl in an early evolutionary step toward its becoming the regulator of tra in Drosophila.

  15. Gene by Sex Interaction for Measures of Obesity in the Framingham Heart Study

    PubMed Central

    Benjamin, Ashlee M.; Suchindran, Sunil; Pearce, Kaela; Rowell, Jennifer; Lien, Lillian F.; Guyton, John R.; McCarthy, Jeanette J.

    2011-01-01

    Obesity is an increasingly prevalent and severe health concern with a substantial heritable component and marked sex differences. We sought to determine if the effect of genetic variants also differed by sex by performing a genome-wide association study modeling the effect of genotype-by-sex interaction on obesity phenotypes. Genotype data from individuals in the Framingham Heart Study Offspring cohort were analyzed across five exams. Although no variants showed genome-wide significant gene-by-sex interaction in any individual exam, four polymorphisms displayed a consistent BMI association (P-values .00186 to .00010) across all five exams. These variants were clustered downstream of LYPLAL1, which encodes a lipase/esterase expressed in adipose tissue, a locus previously identified as having sex-specific effects on central obesity. Primary effects in males were in the opposite direction from females and were replicated in Framingham Generation 3. Our data support a sex-influenced association between genetic variation at the LYPLAL1 locus and obesity-related traits. PMID:21253498

  16. Differential Gene Expression across Breed and Sex in Commercial Pigs Administered Fenbendazole and Flunixin Meglumine

    PubMed Central

    Howard, Jeremy T.; O’Nan, Audrey T.; Maltecca, Christian; Baynes, Ronald E.; Ashwell, Melissa S.

    2015-01-01

    Characterizing the variability in transcript levels across breeds and sex in swine for genes that play a role in drug metabolism may shed light on breed and sex differences in drug metabolism. The objective of the study is to determine if there is heterogeneity between swine breeds and sex in transcript levels for genes previously shown to play a role in drug metabolism for animals administered flunixin meglumine or fenbendazole. Crossbred nursery female and castrated male pigs (n = 169) spread across 5 groups were utilized. Sires (n = 15) of the pigs were purebred Duroc, Landrace, Yorkshire or Hampshire boars mated to a common sow population. Animals were randomly placed into the following treatments: no drug (control), flunixin meglumine, or fenbendazole. One hour after the second dosing, animals were sacrificed and liver samples collected. Quantitative Real-Time PCR was used to measure liver gene expression of the following genes: SULT1A1, ABCB1, CYP1A2, CYP2E1, CYP3A22 and CYP3A29. The control animals were used to investigate baseline transcript level differences across breed and sex. Post drug administration transcript differences across breed and sex were investigated by comparing animals administered the drug to the controls. Contrasts to determine fold change were constructed from a model that included fixed and random effects within each drug. Significant (P-value <0.007) basal transcript differences were found across breeds for SULT1A1, CYP3A29 and CYP3A22. Across drugs, significant (P-value <0.0038) transcript differences existed between animals given a drug and controls across breeds and sex for ABCB1, PS and CYP1A2. Significant (P <0.0038) transcript differences across breeds were found for CYP2E1 and SULT1A1 for flunixin meglumine and fenbendazole, respectively. The current analysis found transcript level differences across swine breeds and sex for multiple genes, which provides greater insight into the relationship between flunixin meglumine and

  17. Differential Gene Expression across Breed and Sex in Commercial Pigs Administered Fenbendazole and Flunixin Meglumine.

    PubMed

    Howard, Jeremy T; O'Nan, Audrey T; Maltecca, Christian; Baynes, Ronald E; Ashwell, Melissa S

    2015-01-01

    Characterizing the variability in transcript levels across breeds and sex in swine for genes that play a role in drug metabolism may shed light on breed and sex differences in drug metabolism. The objective of the study is to determine if there is heterogeneity between swine breeds and sex in transcript levels for genes previously shown to play a role in drug metabolism for animals administered flunixin meglumine or fenbendazole. Crossbred nursery female and castrated male pigs (n = 169) spread across 5 groups were utilized. Sires (n = 15) of the pigs were purebred Duroc, Landrace, Yorkshire or Hampshire boars mated to a common sow population. Animals were randomly placed into the following treatments: no drug (control), flunixin meglumine, or fenbendazole. One hour after the second dosing, animals were sacrificed and liver samples collected. Quantitative Real-Time PCR was used to measure liver gene expression of the following genes: SULT1A1, ABCB1, CYP1A2, CYP2E1, CYP3A22 and CYP3A29. The control animals were used to investigate baseline transcript level differences across breed and sex. Post drug administration transcript differences across breed and sex were investigated by comparing animals administered the drug to the controls. Contrasts to determine fold change were constructed from a model that included fixed and random effects within each drug. Significant (P-value <0.007) basal transcript differences were found across breeds for SULT1A1, CYP3A29 and CYP3A22. Across drugs, significant (P-value <0.0038) transcript differences existed between animals given a drug and controls across breeds and sex for ABCB1, PS and CYP1A2. Significant (P <0.0038) transcript differences across breeds were found for CYP2E1 and SULT1A1 for flunixin meglumine and fenbendazole, respectively. The current analysis found transcript level differences across swine breeds and sex for multiple genes, which provides greater insight into the relationship between flunixin meglumine and

  18. Sequencing the mouse Y chromosome reveals convergent gene acquisition and amplification on both sex chromosomes.

    PubMed

    Soh, Y Q Shirleen; Alföldi, Jessica; Pyntikova, Tatyana; Brown, Laura G; Graves, Tina; Minx, Patrick J; Fulton, Robert S; Kremitzki, Colin; Koutseva, Natalia; Mueller, Jacob L; Rozen, Steve; Hughes, Jennifer F; Owens, Elaine; Womack, James E; Murphy, William J; Cao, Qing; de Jong, Pieter; Warren, Wesley C; Wilson, Richard K; Skaletsky, Helen; Page, David C

    2014-11-06

    We sequenced the MSY (male-specific region of the Y chromosome) of the C57BL/6J strain of the laboratory mouse Mus musculus. In contrast to theories that Y chromosomes are heterochromatic and gene poor, the mouse MSY is 99.9% euchromatic and contains about 700 protein-coding genes. Only 2% of the MSY derives from the ancestral autosomes that gave rise to the mammalian sex chromosomes. Instead, all but 45 of the MSY's genes belong to three acquired, massively amplified gene families that have no homologs on primate MSYs but do have acquired, amplified homologs on the mouse X chromosome. The complete mouse MSY sequence brings to light dramatic forces in sex chromosome evolution: lineage-specific convergent acquisition and amplification of X-Y gene families, possibly fueled by antagonism between acquired X-Y homologs. The mouse MSY sequence presents opportunities for experimental studies of a sex-specific chromosome in its entirety, in a genetically tractable model organism.

  19. Sex-biased gene flow among elk in the greater Yellowstone ecosystem

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hand, Brian K.; Chen, Shanyuan; Anderson, Neil; Beja-Pereira, Albano; Cross, Paul C.; Ebinger, Michael R.; Edwards, Hank; Garrott, Robert A.; Kardos, Marty D.; Kauffman, Matthew J.; Landguth, Erin L.; Middleton, Arthur; Scurlock, Brandon M.; White, P.J.; Zager, Pete; Schwartz, Michael K.; Luikart, Gordon

    2014-01-01

    We quantified patterns of population genetic structure to help understand gene flow among elk populations across the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. We sequenced 596 base pairs of the mitochondrial control region of 380 elk from eight populations. Analysis revealed high mitochondrial DNA variation within populations, averaging 13.0 haplotypes with high mean gene diversity (0.85). The genetic differentiation among populations for mitochondrial DNA was relatively high (FST  =  0.161; P  =  0.001) compared to genetic differentiation for nuclear microsatellite data (FST  =  0.002; P  =  0.332), which suggested relatively low female gene flow among populations. The estimated ratio of male to female gene flow (mm/mf  =  46) was among the highest we have seen reported for large mammals. Genetic distance (for mitochondrial DNA pairwise FST) was not significantly correlated with geographic (Euclidean) distance between populations (Mantel's r  =  0.274, P  =  0.168). Large mitochondrial DNA genetic distances (e.g., FST > 0.2) between some of the geographically closest populations (<65 km) suggested behavioral factors and/or landscape features might shape female gene flow patterns. Given the strong sex-biased gene flow, future research and conservation efforts should consider the sexes separately when modeling corridors of gene flow or predicting spread of maternally transmitted diseases. The growing availability of genetic data to compare male vs. female gene flow provides many exciting opportunities to explore the magnitude, causes, and implications of sex-biased gene flow likely to occur in many species.

  20. Age and sex dependent changes in liver gene expression during the life cycle of the rat

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Age- and sex-related susceptibility to adverse drug reactions and disease is a key concern in understanding drug safety and disease progression. We hypothesize that the underlying suite of hepatic genes expressed at various life cycle stages will impact susceptibility to adverse drug reactions. Understanding the basal liver gene expression patterns is a necessary first step in addressing this hypothesis and will inform our assessments of adverse drug reactions as the liver plays a central role in drug metabolism and biotransformation. Untreated male and female F344 rats were sacrificed at 2, 5, 6, 8, 15, 21, 52, 78, and 104 weeks of age. Liver tissues were collected for histology and gene expression analysis. Whole-genome rat microarrays were used to query global expression profiles. Results An initial list of differentially expressed genes was selected using criteria based upon p-value (p < 0.05) and fold-change (+/- 1.5). Three dimensional principal component analyses revealed differences between males and females beginning at 2 weeks with more divergent profiles beginning at 5 weeks. The greatest sex-differences were observed between 8 and 52 weeks before converging again at 104 weeks. K-means clustering identified groups of genes that displayed age-related patterns of expression. Various adult aging-related clusters represented gene pathways related to xenobiotic metabolism, DNA damage repair, and oxidative stress. Conclusions These results suggest an underlying role for genes in specific clusters in potentiating age- and sex-related differences in susceptibility to adverse health effects. Furthermore, such a comprehensive picture of life cycle changes in gene expression deepens our understanding and informs the utility of liver gene expression biomarkers. PMID:21118493

  1. Sex identification of pigs using polymerase chain reaction amplification of the amelogenin gene.

    PubMed

    Sembon, Shoichiro; Suzuki, Shun-ichi; Fuchimoto, Dai-ichiro; Iwamoto, Masaki; Kawarasaki, Tatsuo; Onishi, Akira

    2008-11-01

    The amelogenin (AMEL) gene exists on both sex chromosomes of various mammalian species and the length and sequence of the noncoding regions differ between the two chromosome-specific alleles. Because both forms can be amplified using a single primer set, the use of AMEL in polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based methods has facilitated sex identification in various mammalian species, including cattle, sheep and humans. In this study, we designed PCR primers to yield different-sized products from the AMEL genes on the X (AMELX) and Y (AMELY) chromosomes of pigs. PCR amplification of genomic DNA samples collected from various breeds of pigs (European breeds: Landrace, Large White, Duroc and Berkshire; Chinese breeds: Meishan and Jinhua and their crossbreeds) yielded the expected products. For all breeds, DNA from male pigs produced two bands (520 and 350 bp; AMELX and AMELY, respectively), whereas samples from female pigs generated only the 520 bp product. We then tested the use of PCR of AMEL for sex identification of in vitro-produced (IVP) porcine embryos sampled at 2 or 5 to 6 days after fertilization; germinal vesicle (GV)-stage oocytes and electroactivated embryos were used as controls. More than 88% of the GV-stage oocytes and electroactivated embryos yielded a single 520 bp single band and about 50% of the IVP embryos tested produced both bands. Our findings show that PCR analysis of the AMEL gene is reliable for sex identification of pigs and porcine embryos.

  2. Sex identification of Japanese black bear, Ursus thibetanus japonicus, by PCR based on amelogenin gene.

    PubMed

    Yamamoto, Kaori; Tsubota, Toshio; Komatsu, Takeshi; Katayama, Atsushi; Murase, Tetsuma; Kita, Isao; Kudo, Tadaaki

    2002-06-01

    A method for sex identification of the Japanese black bear was examined using a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and sequencing of a part of the amelogenin gene. This gene is located on the X and Y chromosomes, and there are 54 nucleotide deletions on the Y chromosome-specific gene. Forty-seven (26 male and 21 female) DNA samples and 23 (13 male and 10 female) DNA samples, respectively extracted from white blood cells and hairs of Japanese black bears were analyzed. The primers SE47 and SE48 from this X-Y homologous region were used in sex identification by PCR amplification. These primers amplified X- and Y-specific bands, which could be used to discriminate between sexes by a length polymorphism in all samples. We suggest that PCR amplification using the primers SE47 and SE48 is useful for sex determination of the Japanese black bear and could be applied to DNA analysis of small samples such as hairs.

  3. Phylogenetic distribution and evolutionary dynamics of the sex determination genes doublesex and transformer in insects.

    PubMed

    Geuverink, E; Beukeboom, L W

    2014-01-01

    Sex determination in insects is characterized by a gene cascade that is conserved at the bottom but contains diverse primary signals at the top. The bottom master switch gene doublesex is found in all insects. Its upstream regulator transformer is present in the orders Hymenoptera, Coleoptera and Diptera, but has thus far not been found in Lepidoptera and in the basal lineages of Diptera. transformer is presumed to be ancestral to the holometabolous insects based on its shared domains and conserved features of autoregulation and sex-specific splicing. We interpret that its absence in basal lineages of Diptera and its order-specific conserved domains indicate multiple independent losses or recruitments into the sex determination cascade. Duplications of transformer are found in derived families within the Hymenoptera, characterized by their complementary sex determination mechanism. As duplications are not found in any other insect order, they appear linked to the haplodiploid reproduction of the Hymenoptera. Further phylogenetic analyses combined with functional studies are needed to understand the evolutionary history of the transformer gene among insects.

  4. Discovery and identification of candidate sex-related genes based on transcriptome sequencing of Russian sturgeon (Acipenser gueldenstaedtii) gonads.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yadong; Xia, Yongtao; Shao, Changwei; Han, Lei; Chen, Xuejie; Yu, Mengjun; Sha, Zhenxia

    2016-07-01

    As the Russian sturgeon (Acipenser gueldenstaedtii) is an important food and is the main source of caviar, it is necessary to discover the genes associated with its sex differentiation. However, the complicated life and maturity cycles of the Russian sturgeon restrict the accurate identification of sex in early development. To generate a first look at specific sex-related genes, we sequenced the transcriptome of gonads in different development stages (1, 2, and 5 yr old stages) with next-generation RNA sequencing. We generated >60 million raw reads, and the filtered reads were assembled into 263,341 contigs, which produced 38,505 unigenes. Genes involved in signal transduction mechanisms were the most abundant, suggesting that development of sturgeon gonads is under control of signal transduction mechanisms. Differentially expressed gene analysis suggests that more genes for protein synthesis, cytochrome c oxidase subunits, and ribosomal proteins were expressed in female gonads than in male. Meanwhile, male gonads expressed more transposable element transposase, reverse transcriptase, and transposase-related genes than female. In total, 342, 782, and 7,845 genes were detected in intersex, male, and female transcriptomes, respectively. The female gonad expressed more genes than the male gonad, and more genes were involved in female gonadal development. Genes (sox9, foxl2) are differentially expressed in different sexes and may be important sex-related genes in Russian sturgeon. Sox9 genes are responsible for the development of male gonads and foxl2 for female gonads.

  5. Strong Constraint on Human Genes Escaping X-Inactivation Is Modulated by their Expression Level and Breadth in Both Sexes.

    PubMed

    Slavney, Andrea; Arbiza, Leonardo; Clark, Andrew G; Keinan, Alon

    2016-02-01

    In eutherian mammals, X-linked gene expression is normalized between XX females and XY males through the process of X chromosome inactivation (XCI). XCI results in silencing of transcription from one ChrX homolog per female cell. However, approximately 25% of human ChrX genes escape XCI to some extent and exhibit biallelic expression in females. The evolutionary basis of this phenomenon is not entirely clear, but high sequence conservation of XCI escapers suggests that purifying selection may directly or indirectly drive XCI escape at these loci. One hypothesis is that this signal results from contributions to developmental and physiological sex differences, but presently there is limited evidence supporting this model in humans. Another potential driver of this signal is selection for high and/or broad gene expression in both sexes, which are strong predictors of reduced nucleotide substitution rates in mammalian genes. Here, we compared purifying selection and gene expression patterns of human XCI escapers with those of X-inactivated genes in both sexes. When we accounted for the functional status of each ChrX gene's Y-linked homolog (or "gametolog"), we observed that XCI escapers exhibit greater degrees of purifying selection in the human lineage than X-inactivated genes, as well as higher and broader gene expression than X-inactivated genes across tissues in both sexes. These results highlight a significant role for gene expression in both sexes in driving purifying selection on XCI escapers, and emphasize these genes' potential importance in human disease.

  6. Sequences homologous to ZFY, a candidate human sex-determining gene, are autosomal in marsupials.

    PubMed

    Sinclair, A H; Foster, J W; Spencer, J A; Page, D C; Palmer, M; Goodfellow, P N; Graves, J A

    Sexual differentiation in placental mammals results from the action of a testis-determining gene encoded by the Y chromosome. This gene causes the indifferent gonad to develop as a testis, thereby initiating a hormonal cascade which produces a male phenotype. Recently, a candidate for the testis-determining gene (ZFY, Y-borne zinc-finger protein) has been cloned. The ZFY probe detects a male-specific (Y-linked) sequence in DNA from a range of eutherian mammals, as well as an X-linked sequence (ZFX) which maps to the human X chromosome. In marsupials it is also the Y chromosome that seems to determine the fate of the gonad, but not all sexual dimorphisms. Using the ZFY probe we find, surprisingly, that the ZFY homologous sequences are not on either the X or the Y chromosome in marsupials, but map to the autosomes. This implies ZFY is not the primary sex-determining gene in marsupials. Either the genetic pathways of sex determination in marsupials and eutherians differ, or they are identical and ZFY is not the primary signal in human sex determination.

  7. Determination of floral organ identity by Arabidopsis MADS domain homeotic proteins AP1, AP3, PI, and AG is independent of their DNA-binding specificity.

    PubMed Central

    Riechmann, J L; Meyerowitz, E M

    1997-01-01

    The MADS domain homeotic proteins APETALA1 (AP1), APETALA3 (AP3), PISTILLATA (PI), and AGAMOUS (AG) combinatorially specify the identity of Arabidopsis floral organs. AP1/AP1, AG/AG, and AP3/PI dimers bind to similar CArG box sequences; thus, differences in DNA-binding specificity among these proteins do not seem to be the origin of their distinct organ identity properties. To assess the overall contribution that specific DNA binding could make to their biological specificity, we have generated chimeric genes in which the amino-terminal half of the MADS domain of AP1, AP3, PI, and AG was substituted by the corresponding sequences of human SRF and MEF2A proteins. In vitro DNA-binding assays reveal that the chimeric proteins acquired the respective, and distinct, DNA-binding specificity of SRF or MEF2A. However, ectopic expression of the chimeric genes reproduces the dominant gain-of-function phenotypes exhibited by plants ectopically expressing the corresponding Arabidopsis wild-type genes. In addition, both the SRF and MEF2 chimeric genes can complement the pertinent ap1-1, ap3-3, pi-1, or ag-3 mutations to a degree similar to that of AP1, AP3, PI, and AG when expressed under the control of the same promoter. These results indicate that determination of floral organ identity by the MADS domain homeotic proteins AP1, AP3, PI, and AG is independent of their DNA-binding specificity. In addition, the DNA-binding experiments show that either one of the two MADS domains of a dimer can be sufficient to confer a particular DNA-binding specificity to the complex and that sequences outside the amino-terminal basic region of the MADS domain can, in some cases, contribute to the DNA-binding specificity of the proteins. Images PMID:9243505

  8. The Sex Determination Gene transformer Regulates Male-Female Differences in Drosophila Body Size

    PubMed Central

    Rideout, Elizabeth J.; Narsaiya, Marcus S.; Grewal, Savraj S.

    2015-01-01

    Almost all animals show sex differences in body size. For example, in Drosophila, females are larger than males. Although Drosophila is widely used as a model to study growth, the mechanisms underlying this male-female difference in size remain unclear. Here, we describe a novel role for the sex determination gene transformer (tra) in promoting female body growth. Normally, Tra is expressed only in females. We find that loss of Tra in female larvae decreases body size, while ectopic Tra expression in males increases body size. Although we find that Tra exerts autonomous effects on cell size, we also discovered that Tra expression in the fat body augments female body size in a non cell-autonomous manner. These effects of Tra do not require its only known targets doublesex and fruitless. Instead, Tra expression in the female fat body promotes growth by stimulating the secretion of insulin-like peptides from insulin producing cells in the brain. Our data suggest a model of sex-specific growth in which body size is regulated by a previously unrecognized branch of the sex determination pathway, and identify Tra as a novel link between sex and the conserved insulin signaling pathway. PMID:26710087

  9. The Sex Determination Gene transformer Regulates Male-Female Differences in Drosophila Body Size.

    PubMed

    Rideout, Elizabeth J; Narsaiya, Marcus S; Grewal, Savraj S

    2015-12-01

    Almost all animals show sex differences in body size. For example, in Drosophila, females are larger than males. Although Drosophila is widely used as a model to study growth, the mechanisms underlying this male-female difference in size remain unclear. Here, we describe a novel role for the sex determination gene transformer (tra) in promoting female body growth. Normally, Tra is expressed only in females. We find that loss of Tra in female larvae decreases body size, while ectopic Tra expression in males increases body size. Although we find that Tra exerts autonomous effects on cell size, we also discovered that Tra expression in the fat body augments female body size in a non cell-autonomous manner. These effects of Tra do not require its only known targets doublesex and fruitless. Instead, Tra expression in the female fat body promotes growth by stimulating the secretion of insulin-like peptides from insulin producing cells in the brain. Our data suggest a model of sex-specific growth in which body size is regulated by a previously unrecognized branch of the sex determination pathway, and identify Tra as a novel link between sex and the conserved insulin signaling pathway.

  10. Deregulated Sex Chromosome Gene Expression with Male Germ Cell-Specific Loss of Dicer1

    PubMed Central

    Snyder, Elizabeth; Buaas, F. William; Gu, Tongjun; Stearns, Timothy M.; Sharma, Manju; Murchison, Elizabeth P.; Puente, Gabriella C.; Braun, Robert E.

    2012-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of endogenous, non-coding RNAs that mediate post-transcriptional gene silencing by inhibiting mRNA translation and promoting mRNA decay. DICER1, an RNase III endonuclease encoded by Dicer1, is required for processing short 21–22 nucleotide miRNAs from longer double-stranded RNA precursors. Here, we investigate the loss of Dicer1 in mouse postnatal male germ cells to determine how disruptions in the miRNA biogenesis pathway may contribute to infertility. Reduced levels of Dicer1 transcripts and DICER1 were confirmed in germ cell knock-out (GCKO) testes by postnatal day 18 (P18). Compared to wild-type (WT) at 8 weeks, GCKO males had no change in body weight; yet showed significant reductions in testis mass and sperm number. Histology and fertility tests confirmed spermatogenic failure in GCKO males. Array analyses at P18 showed that in comparison to WT testes, 75% of miRNA genes and 37% of protein coding genes were differentially expressed in GCKO testes. Among these, 96% of miRNA genes were significantly down-regulated, while 4% miRNA genes were overexpressed. Interestingly, we observed preferential overexpression of genes encoded on the sex chromosomes in GCKO testes, including more than 80% of previously identified targets of meiotic sex chromosome inactivation (MSCI). Compared to WT, GCKO mice showed higher percentages of germ cells at early meiotic stages (leptotene and zygotene) but lower percentages at later stages (pachytene, diplotene and metaphase I) providing evidence that deletion of Dicer1 leads to disruptions in meiotic progression. Therefore, deleting Dicer1 in early postnatal germ cells resulted in deregulation of transcripts encoded by genes on the sex chromosomes, impaired meiotic progression and led to spermatogenic failure and infertility. PMID:23056286

  11. Deregulated sex chromosome gene expression with male germ cell-specific loss of Dicer1.

    PubMed

    Greenlee, Anne R; Shiao, Meng-Shin; Snyder, Elizabeth; Buaas, F William; Gu, Tongjun; Stearns, Timothy M; Sharma, Manju; Murchison, Elizabeth P; Puente, Gabriella C; Braun, Robert E

    2012-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of endogenous, non-coding RNAs that mediate post-transcriptional gene silencing by inhibiting mRNA translation and promoting mRNA decay. DICER1, an RNase III endonuclease encoded by Dicer1, is required for processing short 21-22 nucleotide miRNAs from longer double-stranded RNA precursors. Here, we investigate the loss of Dicer1 in mouse postnatal male germ cells to determine how disruptions in the miRNA biogenesis pathway may contribute to infertility. Reduced levels of Dicer1 transcripts and DICER1 were confirmed in germ cell knock-out (GCKO) testes by postnatal day 18 (P18). Compared to wild-type (WT) at 8 weeks, GCKO males had no change in body weight; yet showed significant reductions in testis mass and sperm number. Histology and fertility tests confirmed spermatogenic failure in GCKO males. Array analyses at P18 showed that in comparison to WT testes, 75% of miRNA genes and 37% of protein coding genes were differentially expressed in GCKO testes. Among these, 96% of miRNA genes were significantly down-regulated, while 4% miRNA genes were overexpressed. Interestingly, we observed preferential overexpression of genes encoded on the sex chromosomes in GCKO testes, including more than 80% of previously identified targets of meiotic sex chromosome inactivation (MSCI). Compared to WT, GCKO mice showed higher percentages of germ cells at early meiotic stages (leptotene and zygotene) but lower percentages at later stages (pachytene, diplotene and metaphase I) providing evidence that deletion of Dicer1 leads to disruptions in meiotic progression. Therefore, deleting Dicer1 in early postnatal germ cells resulted in deregulation of transcripts encoded by genes on the sex chromosomes, impaired meiotic progression and led to spermatogenic failure and infertility.

  12. Comparison of the power of haplotype-based versus single- and multilocus association methods for gene × environment (gene × sex) interactions and application to gene × smoking and gene × sex interactions in rheumatoid arthritis

    PubMed Central

    Dempfle, Astrid; Hein, Rebecca; Beckmann, Lars; Scherag, André; Nguyen, Thuy Trang; Schäfer, Helmut; Chang-Claude, Jenny

    2007-01-01

    Accounting for interactions with environmental factors in association studies may improve the power to detect genetic effects and may help identifying important environmental effect modifiers. The power of unphased genotype-versus haplotype-based methods in regions with high linkage disequilibrium (LD), as measured by D', for analyzing gene × environment (gene × sex) interactions was compared using the Genetic Analysis Workshop 15 (GAW15) simulated data on rheumatoid arthritis with prior knowledge of the answers. Stepwise and regular conditional logistic regression (CLR) was performed using a matched case-control sample for a HLA region interacting with sex. Haplotype-based analyses were performed using a haplotype-sharing-based Mantel statistic and a test for haplotype-trait association in a general linear model framework. A step-down minP algorithm was applied to derive adjusted p-values and to allow for power comparisons. These methods were also applied to the GAW15 real data set for PTPN22. For markers in strong LD, stepwise CLR performed poorly because of the correlation/collinearity between the predictors in the model. The power was high for detecting genetic main effects using simple CLR models and haplotype-based methods and for detecting joint effects using CLR and Mantel statistics. Only the haplotype-trait association test had high power to detect the gene × sex interaction. In the PTPN22 region with markers characterized by strong LD, all methods indicated a significant genotype × sex interaction in a sample of about 1000 subjects. The previously reported R620W single-nucleotide polymorphism was identified using logistic regression, but the haplotype-based methods did not provide any precise location information. PMID:18466575

  13. Bisphenol A modulates expression of sex differentiation genes in the self-fertilizing fish, Kryptolebias marmoratus.

    PubMed

    Rhee, Jae-Sung; Kim, Bo-Mi; Lee, Chang Joo; Yoon, Yong-Dal; Lee, Young-Mi; Lee, Jae-Seong

    2011-08-01

    Endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) have been a major concern in the normal reproduction and development of aquatic organisms. In the teleost, steroid hormones are synthesized via the steroidogenesis pathway, and play a key physiological role in the regulation of gonadal sex differentiation. The protogynous hermaphroditic fish, Kryptolebias marmoratus is the only vertebrate capable of reproducing through internal self-fertilization. To uncover the effect of bisphenol A (BPA) on sex differentiation genes on transcription, we investigated the expression patterns of several sex differentiation-related genes such as dax1, dmrt1, mis, sf1, figlα, StAR and wt1 after BPA exposure with controls (E2 and TMX). In response to 17β-estradiol (E2) exposure, a testis-specific gene, dmrt1 mRNA was down-regulated in the gonad of the secondary male but the expression of the female-specific gene, dax1 mRNA was significantly elevated in the brain and gonad. A high level of StAR mRNA was detected in the brain and gonad of both hermaphrodite and secondary males, suggesting that the elevated expression of dax1 and StAR genes would be involved in E2 exposure. As expected, upon BPA exposure, the dmrt1 and MIS mRNA level decreased in both hermaphrodite and secondary males, while the female-specific gene, figlα mRNA level increased in the gonad of both genders. BPA showed an opposite mode of action on the expression of dax1 (induction, P>0.05) and sf1 mRNA (inhibition, P>0.05) in the brain and gonad against both genders. The sensitivity of dax1 to BPA on expression was relatively high in the secondary male. The wt1 mRNA was up-regulated in most tissues except in the liver of BPA-exposed secondary males. Regarding the time course study, the figlα mRNA level increased at 6 h after BPA exposure. In addition, BPA elevated the expression of StAR, dax1, and wt1 mRNA but repressed sf1 mRNA. In this paper, we demonstrated that BPA may modulate the expression of sex differentiation and

  14. Caste-Specific and Sex-Specific Expression of Chemoreceptor Genes in a Termite.

    PubMed

    Mitaka, Yuki; Kobayashi, Kazuya; Mikheyev, Alexander; Tin, Mandy M Y; Watanabe, Yutaka; Matsuura, Kenji

    2016-01-01

    The sophisticated colony organization of eusocial insects is primarily maintained through the utilization of pheromones. The regulation of these complex social interactions requires intricate chemoreception systems. The recent publication of the genome of Zootermopsis nevadensis opened a new avenue to study molecular basis of termite caste systems. Although there has been a growing interest in the termite chemoreception system that regulates their sophisticated caste system, the relationship between division of labor and expression of chemoreceptor genes remains to be explored. Using high-throughput mRNA sequencing (RNA-seq), we found several chemoreceptors that are differentially expressed among castes and between sexes in a subterranean termite Reticulitermes speratus. In total, 53 chemoreception-related genes were annotated, including 22 odorant receptors, 7 gustatory receptors, 12 ionotropic receptors, 9 odorant-binding proteins, and 3 chemosensory proteins. Most of the chemoreception-related genes had caste-related and sex-related expression patterns; in particular, some chemoreception genes showed king-biased or queen-biased expression patterns. Moreover, more than half of the genes showed significant age-dependent differences in their expression in female and/or male reproductives. These results reveal a strong relationship between the evolution of the division of labor and the regulation of chemoreceptor gene expression, thereby demonstrating the chemical communication and underlining chemoreception mechanism in social insects.

  15. Caste-Specific and Sex-Specific Expression of Chemoreceptor Genes in a Termite

    PubMed Central

    Mikheyev, Alexander; Tin, Mandy M. Y.; Watanabe, Yutaka; Matsuura, Kenji

    2016-01-01

    The sophisticated colony organization of eusocial insects is primarily maintained through the utilization of pheromones. The regulation of these complex social interactions requires intricate chemoreception systems. The recent publication of the genome of Zootermopsis nevadensis opened a new avenue to study molecular basis of termite caste systems. Although there has been a growing interest in the termite chemoreception system that regulates their sophisticated caste system, the relationship between division of labor and expression of chemoreceptor genes remains to be explored. Using high-throughput mRNA sequencing (RNA-seq), we found several chemoreceptors that are differentially expressed among castes and between sexes in a subterranean termite Reticulitermes speratus. In total, 53 chemoreception-related genes were annotated, including 22 odorant receptors, 7 gustatory receptors, 12 ionotropic receptors, 9 odorant-binding proteins, and 3 chemosensory proteins. Most of the chemoreception-related genes had caste-related and sex-related expression patterns; in particular, some chemoreception genes showed king-biased or queen-biased expression patterns. Moreover, more than half of the genes showed significant age-dependent differences in their expression in female and/or male reproductives. These results reveal a strong relationship between the evolution of the division of labor and the regulation of chemoreceptor gene expression, thereby demonstrating the chemical communication and underlining chemoreception mechanism in social insects. PMID:26760975

  16. Free flight odor tracking in Drosophila: Effect of wing chemosensors, sex and pheromonal gene regulation

    PubMed Central

    Houot, Benjamin; Gigot, Vincent; Robichon, Alain; Ferveur, Jean-François

    2017-01-01

    The evolution of powered flight in insects had major consequences for global biodiversity and involved the acquisition of adaptive processes allowing individuals to disperse to new ecological niches. Flies use both vision and olfactory input from their antennae to guide their flight; chemosensors on fly wings have been described, but their function remains mysterious. We studied Drosophila flight in a wind tunnel. By genetically manipulating wing chemosensors, we show that these structures play an essential role in flight performance with a sex-specific effect. Pheromonal systems are also involved in Drosophila flight guidance: transgenic expression of the pheromone production and detection gene, desat1, produced low, rapid flight that was absent in control flies. Our study suggests that the sex-specific modulation of free-flight odor tracking depends on gene expression in various fly tissues including wings and pheromonal-related tissues. PMID:28067325

  17. Extending the functions of the homeotic transcription factor Cdx2 in the digestive system through nontranscriptional activities.

    PubMed

    Freund, Jean-Noël; Duluc, Isabelle; Reimund, Jean-Marie; Gross, Isabelle; Domon-Dell, Claire

    2015-02-07

    The homeoprotein encoded by the intestinal-specific Cdx2 gene is a major regulator of gut development and homeostasis, also involved in colon cancer as well as in intestinal-type metaplasias when it is abnormally expressed outside the gut. At the molecular level, structure/function studies have demonstrated that the Cdx2 protein is a transcription factor containing a conserved homeotic DNA-binding domain made of three alpha helixes arranged in a helix-turn-helix motif, preceded by a transcriptional domain and followed by a regulatory domain. The protein interacts with several thousand sites on the chromatin and widely regulates intestinal functions in stem/progenitor cells as well as in mature differentiated cells. Yet, this transcription factor also acts trough original nontranscriptional mechanisms. Indeed, the identification of novel protein partners of Cdx2 and also of a splicing variant revealed unexpected functions in the control of signaling pathways like the Wnt and NF-κB pathways, in double-strand break DNA repair and in premessenger RNA splicing. These novel functions of Cdx2 must be considered to fully understand the complexity of the role of Cdx2 in the healthy intestine and in diseases.

  18. Sex Chromosome-wide Transcriptional Suppression and Compensatory Cis-Regulatory Evolution Mediate Gene Expression in the Drosophila Male Germline

    PubMed Central

    Landeen, Emily L.; Muirhead, Christina A.; Meiklejohn, Colin D.; Presgraves, Daven C.

    2016-01-01

    The evolution of heteromorphic sex chromosomes has repeatedly resulted in the evolution of sex chromosome-specific forms of regulation, including sex chromosome dosage compensation in the soma and meiotic sex chromosome inactivation in the germline. In the male germline of Drosophila melanogaster, a novel but poorly understood form of sex chromosome-specific transcriptional regulation occurs that is distinct from canonical sex chromosome dosage compensation or meiotic inactivation. Previous work shows that expression of reporter genes driven by testis-specific promoters is considerably lower—approximately 3-fold or more—for transgenes inserted into X chromosome versus autosome locations. Here we characterize this transcriptional suppression of X-linked genes in the male germline and its evolutionary consequences. Using transgenes and transpositions, we show that most endogenous X-linked genes, not just testis-specific ones, are transcriptionally suppressed several-fold specifically in the Drosophila male germline. In wild-type testes, this sex chromosome-wide transcriptional suppression is generally undetectable, being effectively compensated by the gene-by-gene evolutionary recruitment of strong promoters on the X chromosome. We identify and experimentally validate a promoter element sequence motif that is enriched upstream of the transcription start sites of hundreds of testis-expressed genes; evolutionarily conserved across species; associated with strong gene expression levels in testes; and overrepresented on the X chromosome. These findings show that the expression of X-linked genes in the Drosophila testes reflects a balance between chromosome-wide epigenetic transcriptional suppression and long-term compensatory adaptation by sex-linked genes. Our results have broad implications for the evolution of gene expression in the Drosophila male germline and for genome evolution. PMID:27404402

  19. Sex Chromosome-wide Transcriptional Suppression and Compensatory Cis-Regulatory Evolution Mediate Gene Expression in the Drosophila Male Germline.

    PubMed

    Landeen, Emily L; Muirhead, Christina A; Wright, Lori; Meiklejohn, Colin D; Presgraves, Daven C

    2016-07-01

    The evolution of heteromorphic sex chromosomes has repeatedly resulted in the evolution of sex chromosome-specific forms of regulation, including sex chromosome dosage compensation in the soma and meiotic sex chromosome inactivation in the germline. In the male germline of Drosophila melanogaster, a novel but poorly understood form of sex chromosome-specific transcriptional regulation occurs that is distinct from canonical sex chromosome dosage compensation or meiotic inactivation. Previous work shows that expression of reporter genes driven by testis-specific promoters is considerably lower-approximately 3-fold or more-for transgenes inserted into X chromosome versus autosome locations. Here we characterize this transcriptional suppression of X-linked genes in the male germline and its evolutionary consequences. Using transgenes and transpositions, we show that most endogenous X-linked genes, not just testis-specific ones, are transcriptionally suppressed several-fold specifically in the Drosophila male germline. In wild-type testes, this sex chromosome-wide transcriptional suppression is generally undetectable, being effectively compensated by the gene-by-gene evolutionary recruitment of strong promoters on the X chromosome. We identify and experimentally validate a promoter element sequence motif that is enriched upstream of the transcription start sites of hundreds of testis-expressed genes; evolutionarily conserved across species; associated with strong gene expression levels in testes; and overrepresented on the X chromosome. These findings show that the expression of X-linked genes in the Drosophila testes reflects a balance between chromosome-wide epigenetic transcriptional suppression and long-term compensatory adaptation by sex-linked genes. Our results have broad implications for the evolution of gene expression in the Drosophila male germline and for genome evolution.

  20. Sex-biased gene expression in the brown alga Fucus vesiculosus

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The fucoid brown algae (Heterokontophyta, Phaeophyceae) are increasingly the focus of ecological genetics, biodiversity, biogeography and speciation research. The molecular genetics underlying mating system variation, where repeated dioecious – hermaphrodite switches during evolution are recognized, and the molecular evolution of sex-related genes are key questions currently hampered by a lack of genomic information. We therefore undertook a comparative analysis of male and female reproductive tissue transcriptomes against a vegetative background during natural reproductive cycles in Fucus vesiculosus. Results Over 300 k reads were assembled and annotated against public protein databases including a brown alga. Compared with the vegetative tissue, photosynthetic and carbohydrate metabolism pathways were under-expressed, particularly in male tissue, while several pathways involved in genetic information processing and replication were over-expressed. Estimates of sex-biased gene (SBG) expression were higher for male (14% of annotated orthologues) than female tissue (9%) relative to the vegetative background. Mean expression levels and variance were also greater in male- than female-biased genes. Major female-biased genes were carbohydrate-modifying enzymes with likely roles in zygote cell wall biogenesis and/or modification. Male-biased genes reflected distinct sperm development and function, and orthologues for signal perception (a phototropin), transduction (several kinases), and putatively flagella-localized proteins (including candidate gamete-recognition proteins) were uniquely expressed in males. Overall, the results suggest constraint on female-biased genes (possible pleiotropy), and less constrained male-biased genes, mostly associated with sperm-specific functions. Conclusions Our results support the growing contention that males possess a large array of genes regulating male fitness, broadly supporting findings in evolutionarily distant

  1. Sex differences in gene expression for pupa weight in long term selected lines of Tribolium.

    PubMed

    Enfield, F D; Hartung, N; Hefeneider, S H

    1975-03-01

    Full-sib matings in two populations of Tribolium which had been selected for increased pupa weight for more than 85 generations resulted in a significant inbreeding depression in male progeny but showed no effect in the female progeny. An analysis of variance of a population produced by backcrossing the selected populations to the inbred lines originally used to establish the select populations (Design-III) indicated some genes were still segregating which produce dominance effects in males but not in females. The data support the hypothesis that a class of genes exists, associated with the autosomes, that differ in their dominance effects of pupa weight in the two sexes.

  2. Isolation of differentially expressed sex genes in garden asparagus using suppression subtractive hybridization.

    PubMed

    Deng, Chuan-liang; Wang, Ning-na; Li, Shu-fen; Dong, Tian-yu; Zhao, Xin-peng; Wang, Shao-jing; Gao, Wu-jun; Lu, Long-dou

    2015-09-01

    Garden asparagus (Asparagus officinalis L.) is a dioecious species whose male and female flowers are found in separate unisexual individuals. A region called the M-locus, located on a pair of homomorphic sex chromosomes, controls sexual dimorphism in asparagus. To date, no sex determining gene has been isolated from asparagus. To identify more genes involved in flower development in asparagus, subtractive hybridization library of male flowers in asparagus was constructed by suppression subtraction hybridization. A total of 107 expressed sequence tags (ESTs) were identified. BLASTX analysis showed that the library contained several genes that could be related to flower development. The expression patterns of seven selected genes believed to be involved in the development of asparagus male flower were further analyzed by semi-quantitative or real-time reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). Results showed that AOEST4-5, AOEST12-40, and AOEST13-38 were strongly expressed in the male flower stage, whereas no transcript level of AOEST13-38 was detected in the female flower stage. The expression levels of AOEST13-87, AOEST13-92, AOEST13-40, and AOEST18-87 in the male flower stage were also higher than those in the female flower stage, although these transcripts were also expressed in other tissues. The identified genes can provide a strong starting point for further studies on the underlying molecular differences between the male and female flowers of asparagus.

  3. Identification of floral genes for sex determination in Calamus palustris Griff. by using suppression subtractive hybridization.

    PubMed

    Ng, C Y; Wickneswari, R; Choong, C Y

    2014-08-07

    Calamus palustris Griff. is an economically important dioecious rattan species in Southeast Asia. However, dioecy and onset of flowering at 3-4 years old render uncertainties in desired female:male seedling ratios to establish a productive seed orchard for this rattan species. We constructed a subtractive library for male floral tissue to understand the genetic mechanism for gender determination in C. palustris. The subtractive library produced 1536 clones with 1419 clones of high quality. Reverse Northern screening showed 313 clones with differential expression, and sequence analyses clustered them into 205 unigenes, including 32 contigs and 173 singletons. The subtractive library was further validated with reverse transcription-quantitative polymerase chain reaction analysis. Homology identification classified the unigenes into 12 putative functional proteins with 83% unigenes showing significant match to proteins in databases. Functional annotations of these unigenes revealed genes involved in male flower development, including MADS-box genes, pollen-related genes, phytohormones for flower development, and male flower organ development. Our results showed that the male floral genes may play a vital role in sex determination in C. palustris. The identified genes can be exploited to understand the molecular basis of sex determination in C. palustris.

  4. Influence of sex and genetic variability on expression of X-linked genes in human monocytes.

    PubMed

    Castagné, Raphaële; Zeller, Tanja; Rotival, Maxime; Szymczak, Silke; Truong, Vinh; Schillert, Arne; Trégouët, David-Alexandre; Münzel, Thomas; Ziegler, Andreas; Cambien, François; Blankenberg, Stefan; Tiret, Laurence

    2011-11-01

    In humans, the fraction of X-linked genes with higher expression in females has been estimated to be 5% from microarray studies, a proportion lower than the 25% of genes thought to escape X inactivation. We analyzed 715 X-linked transcripts in circulating monocytes from 1,467 subjects and found an excess of female-biased transcripts on the X compared to autosomes (9.4% vs 5.5%, p<2×10(-5)). Among the genes not previously known to escape inactivation, the most significant one was EFHC2 whose 20% of variability was explained by sex. We also investigated cis expression quantitative trait loci (eQTLs) by analyzing 15,703 X-linked SNPs. The frequency and magnitude of X-linked cis eQTLs were quite similar in males and females. Few genes exhibited a stronger genetic effect in females than in males (ARSD, DCX, POLA1 and ITM2A). These genes would deserve further investigation since they may contribute to sex pathophysiological differences.

  5. Evolution of the insect body plan as revealed by the Sex combs reduced expression pattern.

    PubMed

    Rogers, B T; Peterson, M D; Kaufman, T C

    1997-01-01

    The products of the HOM/Hox homeotic genes form a set of evolutionarily conserved transcription factors that control elaborate developmental processes and specify cell fates in many metazoans. We examined the expression of the ortholog of the homeotic gene Sex combs reduced (Scr) of Drosophila melanogaster in insects of three divergent orders: Hemiptera, Orthoptera and Thysanura. Our data reflect how the conservation and variation of Scr expression has affected the morphological evolution of insects. Whereas the anterior epidermal expression of Scr, in a small part of the posterior maxillary and all of the labial segment, is found to be in common among all four insect orders, the posterior (thoracic) expression domains vary. Unlike what is observed in flies, the Scr orthologs of other insects are not expressed broadly over the first thoracic segment, but are restricted to small patches. We show here that Scr is required for suppression of wings on the prothorax of Drosophila. Moreover, Scr expression at the dorsal base of the prothoracic limb in two other winged insects, crickets (Orthoptera) and milkweed bugs (Hemiptera), is consistent with Scr acting as a suppressor of prothoracic wings in these insects. Scr is also expressed in a small patch of cells near the basitarsal-tibial junction of milkweed bugs, precisely where a leg comb develops, suggesting that Scr promotes comb formation, as it does in Drosophila. Surprisingly, the dorsal prothoracic expression of Scr is also present in the primitively wingless firebrat (Thysanura) and the leg patch is seen in crickets, which have no comb. Mapping both gene expression patterns and morphological characters onto the insect phylogenetic tree demonstrates that in the cases of wing suppression and comb formation the appearance of expression of Scr in the prothorax apparently precedes these specific functions.

  6. A Novel Candidate Gene for Temperature-Dependent Sex Determination in the Common Snapping Turtle.

    PubMed

    Schroeder, Anthony L; Metzger, Kelsey J; Miller, Alexandra; Rhen, Turk

    2016-05-01

    Temperature-dependent sex determination (TSD) was described nearly 50 years ago. Researchers have since identified many genes that display differential expression at male- vs. female-producing temperatures. Yet, it is unclear whether these genes (1) are involved in sex determination per se, (2) are downstream effectors involved in differentiation of ovaries and testes, or (3) are thermo-sensitive but unrelated to gonad development. Here we present multiple lines of evidence linking CIRBP to sex determination in the snapping turtle, Chelydra serpentina We demonstrate significant associations between a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) (c63A > C) in CIRBP, transcript levels in embryonic gonads during specification of gonad fate, and sex in hatchlings from a thermal regime that produces mixed sex ratios. The A allele was induced in embryos exposed to a female-producing temperature, while expression of the C allele did not differ between female- and male-producing temperatures. In accord with this pattern of temperature-dependent, allele-specific expression, AA homozygotes were more likely to develop ovaries than AC heterozygotes, which, in turn, were more likely to develop ovaries than CC homozygotes. Multiple regression using SNPs in CIRBP and adjacent loci suggests that c63A > C may be the causal variant or closely linked to it. Differences in CIRBP allele frequencies among turtles from northern Minnesota, southern Minnesota, and Texas reflect small and large-scale latitudinal differences in TSD pattern. Finally, analysis of CIRBP protein localization reveals that CIRBP is in a position to mediate temperature effects on the developing gonads. Together, these studies strongly suggest that CIRBP is involved in determining the fate of the bipotential gonad.

  7. Sequence length polymorphisms within primate amelogenin and amelogenin-like genes: usefulness in sex determination.

    PubMed

    Morrill, Benson H; Rickords, Lee F; Schafstall, Heather J

    2008-10-01

    Sequence length polymorphisms between the amelogenin (AMELX) and the amelogenin-like (AMELY) genes both within and between several mammalian species have been identified and utilized for sex determination, species identification, and to elucidate evolutionary relationships. Sex determination via polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assays of the AMELX and AMELY genes has been successful in greater apes, prosimians, and two species of old world monkeys. To date, no sex determination PCR assay using AMELX and AMELY has been developed for new world monkeys. In this study, we present partial AMELX and AMELY sequences for five old world monkey species (Mandrillus sphinx, Macaca nemestrina, Macaca fuscata, Macaca mulatta, and Macaca fascicularis) along with primer sets that can be used for sex determination of these five species. In addition, we compare the sequences we generated with other primate AMELX and AMELY sequences available on GenBank and discuss sequence length polymorphisms and their usefulness in sex determination within primates. The mandrill and four species of macaque all share two similar deletion regions with each other, the human, and the chimpanzee in the region sequenced. These two deletion regions are 176-181 and 8 nucleotides in length. In analyzing existing primate sequences on GenBank, we also discovered that a separate six-nucleotide polymorphism located approximately 300 nucleotides upstream of the 177 nucleotide polymorphism in sequences of humans and chimps was also present in two species of new world monkeys (Saimiri boliviensis and Saimiri sciureus). We designed primers that incorporate this polymorphism, creating the first AMELX and AMELY PCR primer set that has been used successfully to generate two bands in a new world monkey species.

  8. The gene Sex-lethal of the Sciaridae family (order Diptera, suborder Nematocera) and its phylogeny in dipteran insects.

    PubMed

    Serna, Esther; Gorab, Eduardo; Ruiz, M Fernanda; Goday, Clara; Eirín-López, José M; Sánchez, Lucas

    2004-10-01

    This article reports the cloning and characterization of the gene homologous to Sex-lethal (Sxl) of Drosophila melanogaster from Sciara coprophila, Rhynchosciara americana, and Trichosia pubescens. This gene plays the key role in controlling sex determination and dosage compensation in D. melanogaster. The Sxl gene of the three species studied produces a single transcript encoding a single protein in both males and females. Comparison of the Sxl proteins of these Nematocera insects with those of the Brachycera showed their two RNA-binding domains (RBD) to be highly conserved, whereas significant variation was observed in both the N- and C-terminal domains. The great majority of nucleotide changes in the RBDs were synonymous, indicating that purifying selection is acting on them. In both sexes of the three Nematocera insects, the Sxl protein colocalized with transcription-active regions dependent on RNA polymerase II but not on RNA polymerase I. Together, these results indicate that Sxl does not appear to play a discriminatory role in the control of sex determination and dosage compensation in nematocerans. Thus, in the phylogenetic lineage that gave rise to the drosophilids, evolution coopted for the Sxl gene, modified it, and converted it into the key gene controlling sex determination and dosage compensation. At the same time, however, certain properties of the recruited ancestral Sxl gene were beneficial, and these are maintained in the evolved Sxl gene, allowing it to exert its sex-determining and dose compensation functions in Drosophila.

  9. Importance of the COMT gene for sex differences in brain function and predisposition to psychiatric disorders.

    PubMed

    Tunbridge, Elizabeth M; Harrison, Paul J

    2011-01-01

    As outlined elsewhere in this volume, sex differences can affect brain function and its dysfunction in psychiatric disorders. It is known that genetic factors contribute to these sex dimorphisms, but the individual genes have rarely been identified. The catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) gene, which encodes an enzyme that metabolises catechol compounds, including dopamine, is a leading candidate in this regard. COMT's enzyme activity, and the neurochemistry and behaviour of COMT knockout mice are both markedly sexually dimorphic. Furthermore, genetic associations between COMT and psychiatric phenotypes frequently show differences between men and women. Although many of these differences are unconfirmed or minor, some appear to be of reasonable robustness and magnitude and are reviewed in this chapter. Sexually dimorphic effects of COMT are usually attributed to transcriptional regulation by oestrogens; however, a careful examination of the literature suggests that additional mechanisms are likely to be at least as important. Here, we review the evidence for a sexually dimorphic influence of COMT upon psychiatric phenotypes and brain function, and discuss potential mechanisms by which this may occur. We conclude that despite the evidence being incomplete, there are accumulating and in places compelling data showing that COMT has markedly sexually dimorphic effects on brain function and its dysfunction in psychiatric disorders. Although oestrogenic regulation of COMT is probably partially responsible for these sex differences, other mechanisms are likely also involved. Since sex differences in the genetic architecture of brain function and psychiatric disorders are the rule not the exception, we anticipate that additional evidence will emerge for sexual dimorphisms, not only in COMT but also in many other autosomal genes.

  10. Genomics of sex determination.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jisen; Boualem, Adnane; Bendahmane, Abdelhafid; Ming, Ray

    2014-04-01

    Sex determination is a major switch in the evolutionary history of angiosperm, resulting 11% monoecious and dioecious species. The genomic sequences of papaya sex chromosomes unveiled the molecular basis of recombination suppression in the sex determination region, and candidate genes for sex determination. Identification and analyses of sex determination genes in cucurbits and maize demonstrated conservation of sex determination mechanism in one lineage and divergence between the two systems. Epigenetic control and hormonal influence of sex determination were elucidated in both plants and animals. Intensive investigation of potential sex determination genes in model species will improve our understanding of sex determination gene network. Such network will in turn accelerate the identification of sex determination genes in dioecious species with sex chromosomes, which are burdensome due to no recombination in sex determining regions. The sex determination genes in dioecious species are crucial for understanding the origin of dioecy and sex chromosomes, particularly in their early stage of evolution.

  11. Rainfall-driven sex-ratio genes in African buffalo suggested by correlations between Y-chromosomal haplotype frequencies and foetal sex ratio

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background The Y-chromosomal diversity in the African buffalo (Syncerus caffer) population of Kruger National Park (KNP) is characterized by rainfall-driven haplotype frequency shifts between year cohorts. Stable Y-chromosomal polymorphism is difficult to reconcile with haplotype frequency variations without assuming frequency-dependent selection or specific interactions in the population dynamics of X- and Y-chromosomal genes, since otherwise the fittest haplotype would inevitably sweep to fixation. Stable Y-chromosomal polymorphism due one of these factors only seems possible when there are Y-chromosomal distorters of an equal sex ratio, which act by negatively affecting X-gametes, or Y-chromosomal suppressors of a female-biased sex ratio. These sex-ratio (SR) genes modify (suppress) gamete transmission in their own favour at a fitness cost, allowing for stable polymorphism. Results Here we show temporal correlations between Y-chromosomal haplotype frequencies and foetal sex ratios in the KNP buffalo population, suggesting SR genes. Frequencies varied by a factor of five; too high to be alternatively explained by Y-chromosomal effects on pregnancy loss. Sex ratios were male-biased during wet and female-biased during dry periods (male proportion: 0.47-0.53), seasonally and annually. Both wet and dry periods were associated with a specific haplotype indicating a SR distorter and SR suppressor, respectively. Conclusions The distinctive properties suggested for explaining Y-chromosomal polymorphism in African buffalo may not be restricted to this species alone. SR genes may play a broader and largely overlooked role in mammalian sex-ratio variation. PMID:20416038

  12. Developmental Analysis of Two Sex-Determining Genes, M and F, in the Housefly, Musca Domestica

    PubMed Central

    Hilfiker-Kleiner, D.; Dubendorfer, A.; Hilfiker, A.; Nothiger, R.

    1993-01-01

    In the housefly, Musca domestica, a single dominant factor, M, determines maleness. Animals hemior heterozygous for M are males, whereas those without M develop as females. In certain strains, however, both sexes are homozygous for M, and an epistatic dominant factor, F(D), dictates female development. The requirement for these factors was analyzed by producing, with mitotic recombination, mosaic animals consisting of genetically male and female cells. Removal of F(D) from an M/M;F(D)/+ cell at any time of larval development, even in the last larval instar, resulted in sex-reversal, i.e., in the development of a male clone in an otherwise female fly. In contrast, when M was removed from M/+ cells, the resulting clones remained male despite their female genotype, even when the removal of M happened at embryonic stages. The occurrence of spontaneous gynandromorphs, however, shows that the loss of M in individual nuclei prior to blastoderm formation causes the affected cells to adopt the female pathway. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that M is the primary sex-determining signal which sets the state of activity of the key gene F at around the blastoderm stage. Parallels and differences to the sex-determining system of Drosophila are discussed. PMID:8375655

  13. The Sex Determination Gene Shows No Founder Effect in the Giant Honey Bee, Apis dorsata

    PubMed Central

    Yan, Wei Yu; Wu, Xiao Bo; Zeng, Zhi Jiang; Huang, Zachary Y.

    2012-01-01

    Background All honey bee species (Apis spp) share the same sex determination mechanism using the complementary sex determination (csd) gene. Only individuals heterogeneous at the csd allele develop into females, and the homozygous develop into diploid males, which do not survive. The honeybees are therefore under selection pressure to generate new csd alleles. Previous studies have shown that the csd gene is under balancing selection. We hypothesize that due to the long separation from the mainland of Hainan Island, China, that the giant honey bees (Apis dorsata) should show a founder effect for the csd gene, with many different alleles clustered together, and these would be absent on the mainland. Methodology/Principal Findings We sampled A. dorsata workers from both Hainan and Guangxi Provinces and then cloned and sequenced region 3 of the csd gene and constructed phylogenetic trees. We failed to find any clustering of the csd alleles according to their geographical origin, i.e. the Hainan and Guangxi samples did not form separate clades. Further analysis by including previously published csd sequences also failed to show any clade-forming in both the Philippines and Malaysia. Conclusions/Significance Results from this study and those from previous studies did not support the expectations of a founder effect. We conclude that because of the extremely high mating frequency of A. dorsata queens, a founder effect does not apply in this species. PMID:22511940

  14. The sex-peptide gene (Acp70A) is duplicated in Drosophila subobscura.

    PubMed

    Cirera, S; Aguadé, M

    1998-04-14

    A 3.1-kb region of Drosphila subobscura homologous to the Acp70A region of D. melanogaster, which contains the sex-peptide gene, was cloned and sequenced. This region contains an approximately 600-bp duplication that includes the sex-peptide and its 5' and 3' flanking regions. The preproteins are 54 and 56 amino acids long, respectively (as compared to 55 amino acids in D. melanogaster), and each includes a 19-amino-acid-long signal peptide. The C-terminal part of the mature peptide is highly conserved between D. melanogaster and the two copies of D. subobscura. In this species, both copies of the gene are transcribed and, like in D. melangaster, only expressed in males. The duplicated region includes 300 bp upstream of the gene that would therefore seem sufficient for their expression in males. This region presents at its 5' end a stretch 93-bp that has a high similarity with the corresponding region of D. melanogaster and could be part of a still unidentified regulatory element of these genes.

  15. Transcriptional regulation of the Sex-lethal gene by helix-loop-helix proteins.

    PubMed

    Hoshijima, K; Kohyama, A; Watakabe, I; Inoue, K; Sakamoto, H; Shimura, Y

    1995-09-11

    Somatic sex determination in Drosophila depends on the expression of Sex-lethal (Sxl), whose level is determined by the relative number of X chromosomes and sets of autosomes (X:A ratio). The first step in regulation of Sxl expression is transcriptional control from its early promoter and several genes encoding transcription factors of the helix-loop-helix (HLH) family such as daughterless (da), sisterless-b (sis-b), deadpan (dpn) and extramacrochaetae (emc) have been implicated. By the use of transfection assays and in vitro binding experiments, here we show that da/sis-b heterodimers bind several sites on the Sxl early promoter with different affinities and consequently tune the level of active transcription from this promoter. Interestingly, our data indicate that repression by the dpn product of da/sis-b dependent activation results from specific binding of dpn protein to a unique site within the promoter. This contrasts with the mode of emc repression, which inhibits the formation of the da/sis-b heterodimers. These results reveal the molecular mechanisms by which Sxl gene transcription is positively or negatively regulated to control somatic sex determination.

  16. Estimating the sex-specific effects of genes on facial attractiveness and sexual dimorphism.

    PubMed

    Mitchem, Dorian G; Purkey, Alicia M; Grebe, Nicholas M; Carey, Gregory; Garver-Apgar, Christine E; Bates, Timothy C; Arden, Rosalind; Hewitt, John K; Medland, Sarah E; Martin, Nicholas G; Zietsch, Brendan P; Keller, Matthew C

    2014-05-01

    Human facial attractiveness and facial sexual dimorphism (masculinity-femininity) are important facets of mate choice and are hypothesized to honestly advertise genetic quality. However, it is unclear whether genes influencing facial attractiveness and masculinity-femininity have similar, opposing, or independent effects across sex, and the heritability of these phenotypes is poorly characterized. To investigate these issues, we assessed facial attractiveness and facial masculinity-femininity in the largest genetically informative sample (n = 1,580 same- and opposite-sex twin pairs and siblings) to assess these questions to date. The heritability was ~0.50-0.70 for attractiveness and ~0.40-0.50 for facial masculinity-femininity, indicating that, despite ostensible selection on genes influencing these traits, substantial genetic variation persists in both. Importantly, we found evidence for intralocus sexual conflict, whereby alleles that increase masculinity in males have the same effect in females. Additionally, genetic influences on attractiveness were shared across the sexes, suggesting that attractive fathers tend to have attractive daughters and attractive mothers tend to have attractive sons.

  17. Sex-specific silencing of X-linked genes by Xist RNA.

    PubMed

    Gayen, Srimonta; Maclary, Emily; Hinten, Michael; Kalantry, Sundeep

    2016-01-19

    X-inactive specific transcript (Xist) long noncoding RNA (lncRNA) is thought to catalyze silencing of X-linked genes in cis during X-chromosome inactivation, which equalizes X-linked gene dosage between male and female mammals. To test the impact of Xist RNA on X-linked gene silencing, we ectopically induced endogenous Xist by ablating the antisense repressor Tsix in mice. We find that ectopic Xist RNA induction and subsequent X-linked gene silencing is sex specific in embryos and in differentiating embryonic stem cells (ESCs) and epiblast stem cells (EpiSCs). A higher frequency of X(ΔTsix)Y male cells displayed ectopic Xist RNA coating compared with X(ΔTsix)X female cells. This increase reflected the inability of X(ΔTsix)Y cells to efficiently silence X-linked genes compared with X(ΔTsix)X cells, despite equivalent Xist RNA induction and coating. Silencing of genes on both Xs resulted in significantly reduced proliferation and increased cell death in X(ΔTsix)X female cells relative to X(ΔTsix)Y male cells. Thus, whereas Xist RNA can inactivate the X chromosome in females it may not do so in males. We further found comparable silencing in differentiating X(ΔTsix)Y and 39,X(ΔTsix) (X(ΔTsix)O) ESCs, excluding the Y chromosome and instead implicating the X-chromosome dose as the source of the sex-specific differences. Because X(ΔTsix)X female embryonic epiblast cells and EpiSCs harbor an inactivated X chromosome prior to ectopic inactivation of the active X(ΔTsix) X chromosome, we propose that the increased expression of one or more X-inactivation escapees activates Xist and, separately, helps trigger X-linked gene silencing.

  18. Geographic variability in expression of the sex-linked AAT-1 gene of the bell-ring frog, Buergeria buergeri.

    PubMed

    Sumida, Masayuki; Ohta, Shigeru; Atsumi, Shigeru; Fujii, Tamotsu

    2004-03-15

    Cytological observation and artificial crossing experiments were used to examine the geographic differences in the sex-determining mechanism and mode of inheritance of the sex-linked AAT-1 gene in the bell-ring frog, Buergeria buergeri. The AAT-1 phenotypes were also examined by allozyme analysis using field-caught females and males collected from 19 populations from the Honshu, Shikoku, and Kyushu islands of Japan, in order to comprehensively elucidate the geographic variability in the expression of the sex-linked AAT-1 gene of B. buergeri. The results showed that the Aomori population of B. buergeri from the northern end of Honshu was female heterogametic in sex determination, that chromosome No. VII was a sex chromosome of the ZZ/ZW type, and that the sex-linked AAT-1 gene was expressed on both the Z and W chromosomes. This mode of AAT-1 expression in the Aomori population was different from that in the Hiroshima population from western Honshu, in which the AAT-1 gene was expressed on the Z chromosome but not on the W chromosome. The results also showed that there was no differentiation among populations in the expression of the AAT-1 genes on the Z chromosome, whereas two populations, the Hiroshima and Aomori frogs, exhibited distinct modes of expression of the AAT-1 gene on the W chromosome. These two modes of expression may be widely distributed in western and eastern Japan, and coexist in the central part of Honshu.

  19. MYB transcription factor gene involved in sex determination in Asparagus officinalis.

    PubMed

    Murase, Kohji; Shigenobu, Shuji; Fujii, Sota; Ueda, Kazuki; Murata, Takanori; Sakamoto, Ai; Wada, Yuko; Yamaguchi, Katsushi; Osakabe, Yuriko; Osakabe, Keishi; Kanno, Akira; Ozaki, Yukio; Takayama, Seiji

    2017-01-01

    Dioecy is a plant mating system in which individuals of a species are either male or female. Although many flowering plants evolved independently from hermaphroditism to dioecy, the molecular mechanism underlying this transition remains largely unknown. Sex determination in the dioecious plant Asparagus officinalis is controlled by X and Y chromosomes; the male and female karyotypes are XY and XX, respectively. Transcriptome analysis of A. officinalis buds showed that a MYB-like gene, Male Specific Expression 1 (MSE1), is specifically expressed in males. MSE1 exhibits tight linkage with the Y chromosome, specific expression in early anther development and loss of function on the X chromosome. Knockout of the MSE1 orthologue in Arabidopsis induces male sterility. Thus, MSE1 acts in sex determination in A. officinalis.

  20. Control of mosquito-borne infectious diseases: Sex and gene drive

    PubMed Central

    Adelman, Zach N.; Tu, Zhijian

    2015-01-01

    Sterile male releases have successfully reduced local populations of the dengue vector, Aedes aegypti, but challenges remain in scale and in separating sexes prior to release. The recent discovery of the first mosquito male determining factor (M factor), will facilitate our understanding of the genetic programs that initiate sexual development in mosquitoes. Manipulation of the M-factor and possible intermediary factors may result in female-to-male conversion or female killing, enabling efficient sex-separation and effective reduction of target mosquito populations. Given recent breakthroughs in the development of CRISPR-Cas9 reagents as a source of gene drive, more advanced technologies at driving maleness, the ultimate disease refractory phenotype, become possible and may represent efficient and self-limiting methods to control mosquito populations. PMID:26897660

  1. Down regulation of gene related sex hormone synthesis pathway in mouse testes by miroestrol and deoxymiroestrol.

    PubMed

    Udomsuk, Latiporn; Juengwatanatrakul, Thaweesak; Putalun, Waraporn; Jarukamjorn, Kanokwan

    2011-12-01

    Miroestrol and deoxymiroestrol are phytoestrogens isolated from tuberous root of Pueraria candollei var. mirifica. Modulatory effects of miroestrol and deoxymiroestrol on enzymes involved in sex-hormone synthesis pathway in male C57BL/6 mice were investigated using semi-quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). Miroestrol and deoxymiroestrol suppressed the expressions of 3β-HSD, 17β-HSD1, and CYP17 while CYP19 mRNA expression was slightly decreased. In addition, the expression of 17β-HSD2 was induced in correlation with those did by estradiol. These observations supported that miroestrol and deoxymiroestrol could exhibit the same effect as estradiol regarding regulation of testicular gene related sex hormone synthesis pathway.

  2. Maternal diets trigger sex-specific divergent trajectories of gene expression and epigenetic systems in mouse placenta.

    PubMed

    Gabory, Anne; Ferry, Laure; Fajardy, Isabelle; Jouneau, Luc; Gothié, Jean-David; Vigé, Alexandre; Fleur, Cécile; Mayeur, Sylvain; Gallou-Kabani, Catherine; Gross, Marie-Sylvie; Attig, Linda; Vambergue, Anne; Lesage, Jean; Reusens, Brigitte; Vieau, Didier; Remacle, Claude; Jais, Jean-Philippe; Junien, Claudine

    2012-01-01

    Males and females responses to gestational overnutrition set the stage for subsequent sex-specific differences in adult onset non communicable diseases. Placenta, as a widely recognized programming agent, contibutes to the underlying processes. According to our previous findings, a high-fat diet during gestation triggers sex-specific epigenetic alterations within CpG and throughout the genome, together with the deregulation of clusters of imprinted genes. We further investigated the impact of diet and sex on placental histology, transcriptomic and epigenetic signatures in mice. Both basal gene expression and response to maternal high-fat diet were sexually dimorphic in whole placentas. Numerous genes showed sexually dimorphic expression, but only 11 genes regardless of the diet. In line with the key role of genes belonging to the sex chromosomes, 3 of these genes were Y-specific and 3 were X-specific. Amongst all the genes that were differentially expressed under a high-fat diet, only 16 genes were consistently affected in both males and females. The differences were not only quantitative but remarkably qualitative. The biological functions and networks of genes dysregulated differed markedly between the sexes. Seven genes of the epigenetic machinery were dysregulated, due to effects of diet, sex or both, including the Y- and X-linked histone demethylase paralogues Kdm5c and Kdm5d, which could mark differently male and female epigenomes. The DNA methyltransferase cofactor Dnmt3l gene expression was affected, reminiscent of our previous observation of changes in global DNA methylation. Overall, this striking sexual dimorphism of programming trajectories impose a considerable revision of the current dietary interventions protocols.

  3. Maternal Diets Trigger Sex-Specific Divergent Trajectories of Gene Expression and Epigenetic Systems in Mouse Placenta

    PubMed Central

    Gabory, Anne; Ferry, Laure; Fajardy, Isabelle; Jouneau, Luc; Gothié, Jean-David; Vigé, Alexandre; Fleur, Cécile; Mayeur, Sylvain; Gallou-Kabani, Catherine; Gross, Marie-Sylvie; Attig, Linda; Vambergue, Anne; Lesage, Jean; Reusens, Brigitte; Vieau, Didier; Remacle, Claude; Jais, Jean-Philippe; Junien, Claudine

    2012-01-01

    Males and females responses to gestational overnutrition set the stage for subsequent sex-specific differences in adult onset non communicable diseases. Placenta, as a widely recognized programming agent, contibutes to the underlying processes. According to our previous findings, a high-fat diet during gestation triggers sex-specific epigenetic alterations within CpG and throughout the genome, together with the deregulation of clusters of imprinted genes. We further investigated the impact of diet and sex on placental histology, transcriptomic and epigenetic signatures in mice. Both basal gene expression and response to maternal high-fat diet were sexually dimorphic in whole placentas. Numerous genes showed sexually dimorphic expression, but only 11 genes regardless of the diet. In line with the key role of genes belonging to the sex chromosomes, 3 of these genes were Y-specific and 3 were X-specific. Amongst all the genes that were differentially expressed under a high-fat diet, only 16 genes were consistently affected in both males and females. The differences were not only quantitative but remarkably qualitative. The biological functions and networks of genes dysregulated differed markedly between the sexes. Seven genes of the epigenetic machinery were dysregulated, due to effects of diet, sex or both, including the Y- and X-linked histone demethylase paralogues Kdm5c and Kdm5d, which could mark differently male and female epigenomes. The DNA methyltransferase cofactor Dnmt3l gene expression was affected, reminiscent of our previous observation of changes in global DNA methylation. Overall, this striking sexual dimorphism of programming trajectories impose a considerable revision of the current dietary interventions protocols. PMID:23144842

  4. A new marker based on the avian spindlin gene that is able to sex most birds, including species problematic to sex with CHD markers.

    PubMed

    Dawson, Deborah A; Dos Remedios, Natalie; Horsburgh, Gavin J

    2016-11-01

    We have developed a new marker (Z43B) that can be successfully used to identify the sex of most birds (69%), including species difficult or impossible to sex with other markers. We utilized the zebra finch Taeniopygia guttata EST microsatellite sequence (CK309496) which displays sequence homology to the 5' untranslated region (UTR) of the avian spindlin gene. This gene is known to be present on the Z and W chromosomes. To maximize cross-species utility, the primer set was designed from a consensus sequence created from homologs of CK309496 that were isolated from multiple distantly related species. Both the forward and reverse primer sequences were 100% identical to 14 avian species, including the Z chromosome of eight species and the chicken Gallus gallus W chromosome, as well as the saltwater crocodile Crocodylus porosus. The Z43B primer set was assessed by genotyping individuals of known sex belonging to 61 non-ratite species and a single ratite. The Z and W amplicons differed in size making it possible to distinguish between males (ZZ) and females (ZW) for the majority (69%) of non-ratite species tested, comprising 10 orders of birds. We predict that this marker will be useful for obtaining sex-typing data for ca 6,869 species of birds (69% of non-ratites but not galliforms). A wide range of species could be sex-typed including passerines, shorebirds, eagles, falcons, bee-eaters, cranes, shags, parrots, penguins, ducks, and a ratite species, the brown kiwi, Apteryx australis. Those species sexed include species impossible or problematic to sex-type with other markers (magpie, albatross, petrel, eagle, falcon, crane, and penguin species). Zoo Biol. 35:533-545, 2016. © 2016 The Authors. Zoo Biology published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  5. Functional analysis of sex-determination genes by gene silencing with LNA-DNA gapmers in the silkworm, Bombyx mori.

    PubMed

    Sakai, Hiroki; Sakaguchi, Honami; Aoki, Fugaku; Suzuki, Masataka G

    2015-08-01

    The sexual fate of B. mori is determined genetically; ZW, female and ZZ, male. Recently, we successfully identified a strong candidate gene at the top of the sex determination cascade in B. mori. This gene was termed Feminizer (Fem) and revealed to be a source of Fem-piRNA. Further, we found that B. mori doublesex (Bmdsx) splicing was markedly altered to produce the male-type isoform when a Fem-piRNA inhibitor was injected into ZW embryos. Moreover, knockdown of Masculinizer (Masc), a Fem-piRNA target gene, altered to produce the female-type isoform of Bmdsx in male embryos. However, it remains unclear as to whether Masc directly regulates the sex-specific expression of Bmdsx. In previous studies, we determined that the male-specific isoform of the Bombyx homolog of IGF-II mRNA-binding protein (Imp(M)) was involved in the male-specific splicing of Bmdsx. In an attempt to clarify the genetic relationship between Fem, Masc, Imp(M), and Bmdsx, knockdown experiments were performed. Knockdown of Fem shifted into male-type Bmdsx, Imp(M) and Masc in female embryos. Knockdown of Masc led to the production of the female-type Bmdsx and a dramatic reduction in Imp(M) expression in male embryos. Knockdown of Imp(M) shifted Bmdsx splice mode from the male-type into the female-type. Our results suggest that: (1) Fem reduces Masc expression, (2) Masc dramatically induces Imp(M) expression, and (3) Imp(M) shifting Bmdsx splice mode from the female-type into the male-type. Based on these findings, we propose a possible genetic cascade regulating sex determination in B. mori.

  6. The human and mouse sex-determining SRY genes repress the Rspol/beta-catenin signaling.

    PubMed

    Lau, Yun-Fai Chris; Li, Yunmin

    2009-04-01

    The sex-determining region Y (SRY) is the gene on the Y chromosome responsible for switching on male sex determination during mammalian embryogenesis. In its absence, ovaries develop in the embryo. Hence, ovarian determination and differentiation is considered to be a default, or passive, developmental pathway. Recently this classical paradigm of sex determination has been challenged with the discovery of the R-spondin 1 (RSPO1) as an active ovarian determinant. Mutations of RSPO1 cause a female-to-male sex reversal. RSPO1 synergizes with WNT4 in activating an ovarian development in the bipotential gonad via the canonical Wnt signaling. Early studies showed that SRY represses such Wnt signaling, but also generated discrepancies on whether only mouse Sry is capable of inhibiting such Wnt signaling and whether both human and mouse SRY proteins are able to interact with beta-catenin, the intracellular messenger responsible for executing the Wnt signals. Our studies show that both human SRY and mouse Sry are capable of repressing the Rspo1/Wnt/beta-catenin signaling. However, the repression activities vary among different SRY/Sry proteins and paradoxically related to the presence and/or size of an acidic/glutamine-rich domain. The HMG box of human SRY could bind directly to beta-catenin while the mouse Sry binds to beta-catenin via its HMG box and glutamine-rich domain. The results clarify some of the initial discrepancies, and raise the possibility that SRY interacts with beta-catenin in the nucleus and represses the transcriptional activation of the Rspo1/Wnt target genes involved in ovarian determination, thereby switching on testis determination.

  7. Identification and characterization of a Masculinizer (Masc) gene involved in sex differentiation in Artemia.

    PubMed

    Li, Dong-Rui; Ye, Hui-Li; Yang, Jin-Shu; Yang, Fan; Wang, Mo-Ran; De Vos, Stephanie; Vuylsteke, Marnik; Sorgeloos, Patrick; Van Stappen, Gilbert; Bossier, Peter; Yang, Wei-Jun

    2017-03-11

    The sex of relatively primitive animals such as invertebrates is mostly determined by environmental factors and chromosome ploidy. Heteromorphic chromosomes may also play an important role, as in the ZW system in lepidopterans. However, the mechanisms of these various sex determination systems are still largely undefined. In the present study, a Masculinizer gene (Ar-Masc) was identified in the crustacean Artemia franciscana Kellogg 1906. Sequence analysis revealed that the 1140-bp full-length open reading frame of Ar-Masc encodes a 380-aa protein containing two CCCH-type zinc finger domains having a high degree of shared identities with the MASC protein characterized in the silkworm Bombyx mori, which has been determined to participate in the production of male-specific splice variants. Furthermore, although Ar-Masc could be detected in almost all stages in both sexual and parthenogenetic Artemia, there were significant variations in expression between these two reproductive modes. Firstly, qRT-PCR and Western blot analysis showed that levels of both Ar-Masc mRNA and protein in sexual nauplii were much higher than in parthenogenetic nauplii throughout the hatching process. Secondly, both sexual and parthenogenetic Artemia had decreased levels of Ar-Masc along with the embryonic developmental stages, while the sexual ones had a relatively higher and more stable expression than those of parthenogenetic ones. Thirdly, immunofluorescence analysis determined that sexual individuals had higher levels of Ar-MASC protein than parthenogenetic individuals during embryonic development. Lastly, RNA interference with dsRNA showed that gene silencing of Ar-Masc in sexual A. franciscana caused the female-male ratio of progeny to be 2.19:1. These data suggest that Ar-Masc participates in the process of sex determination in A. franciscana, and provide insight into the evolution of sex determination in sexual organisms.

  8. Structure and function of ribosomal protein S4 genes on the human and mouse sex chromosomes.

    PubMed

    Zinn, A R; Alagappan, R K; Brown, L G; Wool, I; Page, D C

    1994-04-01

    The human sex-linked genes RPS4X and RPS4Y encode distinct isoforms of ribosomal protein S4. Insufficient expression of S4 may play a role in the development of Turner syndrome, the complex human phenotype associated with monosomy X. In mice, the S4 protein is encoded by an X-linked gene, Rps4, and is identical to human S4X; there is no mouse Y homolog. We report here the organization of the human RPS4X and RPS4Y and mouse Rps4 genes. Each gene comprises seven exons; the positions of introns are conserved. The 5' flanking sequences of human RPS4X and mouse Rps4 are very similar, while RPS4Y diverges shortly upstream of the transcription start site. In chickens, S4 is encoded by a single gene that is not sex linked. The chicken protein differs from human S4X by four amino acid substitutions, all within a region encoded by a single exon. Three of the four substitutions are also present in human S4Y, suggesting that the chicken S4 gene may have arisen by recombination between S4X- and S4Y-like sequences. Using isoform-specific antisera, we determined that human S4X and S4Y are both present in translationally active ribosomes. S4Y is about 10 to 15% as abundant as S4X in ribosomes from normal male placental tissue and 46,XY cultured cells. In 49,XYYYY cells, S4Y is about half as abundant as S4X. In 49,XXXXY cells, S4Y is barely detectable. These results bear on the hypothesized role of S4 deficiency in Turner syndrome.

  9. Molecular analysis and developmental expression of the Sex-lethal gene of Sciara ocellaris (Diptera order, Nematocera suborder).

    PubMed

    Ruiz, M F; Goday, C; González, P; Sánchez, L

    2003-06-01

    This paper reports the cloning and characterization in Sciara ocellaris of the gene homologous to Sex-lethal (Sxl) of Drosophila melanogaster. This gene plays the key role controlling sex determination and dosage compensation in the latter species. The Sciara Sxl gene produces a single transcript encoding a single protein in both males and females. This protein, found inside the nucleus, is expressed in all tissues. Both Sciara and Drosophila Sxl proteins are highly conserved at their two RNA-binding domains. In both Sciara sexes, the Sxl protein co-localizes with transcription-active regions dependent on RNA polymerase II but not on RNA polymerase I. It would appear that in Sciara, Sxl does not appear to play the key discriminative role in controlling sex determination and dosage compensation that it plays in Drosophila.

  10. Sex-linkage of sexually antagonistic genes is predicted by female, but not male, effects in birds.

    PubMed

    Mank, Judith E; Ellegren, Hans

    2009-06-01

    Evolutionary theory predicts that sexually antagonistic loci will be preferentially sex-linked, and this association can be empirically testes with data on sex-biased gene expression with the assumption that sex-biased gene expression represents the resolution of past sexual antagonism. However, incomplete dosage compensating mechanisms and meiotic sex chromosome inactivation have hampered efforts to connect expression data to theoretical predictions regarding the genomic distribution of sexually antagonistic loci in a variety of animals. Here we use data on the underlying regulatory mechanism that produce expression sex-bias to test the genomic distribution of sexually antagonistic genes in chicken. Using this approach, which is free from problems associated with the lack of dosage compensation in birds, we show that female-detriment genes are significantly overrepresented on the Z chromosome, and female-benefit genes underrepresented. By contrast, male-effect genes show no over- or underrepresentation on the Z chromosome. These data are consistent with a dominant mode of inheritance for sexually antagonistic genes, in which male-benefit coding mutations are more likely to be fixed on the Z due to stronger male-specific selective pressures. After fixation of male-benefit alleles, regulatory changes in females evolve to minimize antagonism by reducing female expression.

  11. Sexual epigenetics: gender-specific methylation of a gene in the sex determining region of Populus balsamifera

    PubMed Central

    Bräutigam, Katharina; Soolanayakanahally, Raju; Champigny, Marc; Mansfield, Shawn; Douglas, Carl; Campbell, Malcolm M.; Cronk, Quentin

    2017-01-01

    Methylation has frequently been implicated in gender determination in plants. The recent discovery of the sex determining region (SDR) of balsam poplar, Populus balsamifera, pinpointed 13 genes with differentiated X and Y copies. We tested these genes for differential methylation using whole methylome sequencing of xylem tissue of multiple individuals grown under field conditions in two common gardens. The only SDR gene to show a marked pattern of gender-specific methylation is PbRR9, a member of the two component response regulator (type-A) gene family, involved in cytokinin signalling. It is an ortholog of Arabidopsis genes ARR16 and ARR17. The strongest patterns of differential methylation (mostly male-biased) are found in the putative promoter and the first intron. The 4th intron is strongly methylated in both sexes and the 5th intron is unmethylated in both sexes. Using a statistical learning algorithm we find that it is possible accurately to assign trees to gender using genome-wide methylation patterns alone. The strongest predictor is the region coincident with PbRR9, showing that this gene stands out against all genes in the genome in having the strongest sex-specific methylation pattern. We propose the hypothesis that PbRR9 has a direct, epigenetically mediated, role in poplar sex determination. PMID:28345647

  12. RNF8 regulates active epigenetic modifications and escape gene activation from inactive sex chromosomes in post-meiotic spermatids

    PubMed Central

    Sin, Ho-Su; Barski, Artem; Zhang, Fan; Kartashov, Andrey V.; Nussenzweig, Andre; Chen, Junjie; Andreassen, Paul R.; Namekawa, Satoshi H.

    2012-01-01

    Sex chromosomes are uniquely subject to chromosome-wide silencing during male meiosis, and silencing persists into post-meiotic spermatids. Against this background, a select set of sex chromosome-linked genes escapes silencing and is activated in post-meiotic spermatids. Here, we identify a novel mechanism that regulates escape gene activation in an environment of chromosome-wide silencing in murine germ cells. We show that RNF8-dependent ubiquitination of histone H2A during meiosis establishes active epigenetic modifications, including dimethylation of H3K4 on the sex chromosomes. RNF8-dependent active epigenetic memory, defined by dimethylation of H3K4, persists throughout meiotic division. Various active epigenetic modifications are subsequently established on the sex chromosomes in post-meiotic spermatids. These RNF8-dependent modifications include trimethylation of H3K4, histone lysine crotonylation (Kcr), and incorporation of the histone variant H2AFZ. RNF8-dependent epigenetic programming regulates escape gene activation from inactive sex chromosomes in post-meiotic spermatids. Kcr accumulates at transcriptional start sites of sex-linked genes activated in an RNF8-dependent manner, and a chromatin conformational change is associated with RNF8-dependent epigenetic programming. Furthermore, we demonstrate that this RNF8-dependent pathway is distinct from that which recognizes DNA double-strand breaks. Our results establish a novel connection between a DNA damage response factor (RNF8) and epigenetic programming, specifically in establishing active epigenetic modifications and gene activation. PMID:23249736

  13. Association study of gender identity disorder and sex hormone-related genes.

    PubMed

    Ujike, Hiroshi; Otani, Kyohei; Nakatsuka, Mikiya; Ishii, Kazushi; Sasaki, Aiko; Oishi, Tomoko; Sato, Toshiki; Okahisa, Yuko; Matsumoto, Yosuke; Namba, Yuzaburo; Kimata, Yoshihiro; Kuroda, Shigetoshi

    2009-10-01

    To investigate the biological mechanism of gender identity disorder (GID), five candidate sex hormone-related genes, encoding androgen receptor (AR), estrogen receptors alpha (ERalpha) and beta (ERbeta), aromatase (CYP19), and progesterone receptor (PGR) were analyzed by a case-control association study. Subjects were 242 transsexuals (74 male-to-female patients (MTF) and 168 female-to-male patients (FTM)), and 275 healthy age- and geographical origin-matched controls (106 males and 169 females). The distributions of CAG repeat numbers in exon 1 of AR, TA repeat numbers in the promoter region of ERalpha, CA repeat numbers in intron 5 of ERbeta, TTTA repeat numbers in intron 4 of CYP19, and six polymorphisms (rs2008112, rs508653, V660L, H770H, rs572698 and PROGINS) of PGR were analyzed. No significant difference in allelic or genotypic distribution of any gene examined was found between MTFs and control males or between FTMs and control females. The present findings do not provide any evidence that genetic variants of sex hormone-related genes confer individual susceptibility to MTF or FTM transsexualism.

  14. Sex- and age-dependent gene expression in human liver: An implication for drug-metabolizing enzymes.

    PubMed

    Uno, Yasuhiro; Takata, Ryo; Kito, Go; Yamazaki, Hiroshi; Nakagawa, Kazuko; Nakamura, Yusuke; Kamataki, Tetsuya; Katagiri, Toyomasa

    2017-02-01

    Sex and age differences in hepatic expression of drug-metabolizing enzyme genes could cause variations in drug metabolism, but has not been fully elucidated, especially in Asian population. In this study, the global expression of human hepatic genes was analyzed by microarrays in 40 Japanese subjects (27 males and 13 females). Thirty-five sex-biased genes were identified (P < 0.005). Whereas, 60 age-biased genes in two age groups, <60 years and ≥70 years (P < 0.001), were identified in males. By Gene Ontology analysis, the sex-biased genes were related to protein catabolism and modification, while the age-biased genes were related to transcription regulation and cell death. Quantitative polymerase chain reaction confirmed the female-biased expression of drug-metabolizing enzyme genes BChE, CYP4X1, and SULT1E1 (≥1.5-fold, P < 0.05). Further analysis of drug-metabolizing enzyme genes indicated that expression of CYP2A6 and CYP3A4 in females in the ≥70 age group was less than in the <60 age group (≥1.5-fold, P < 0.05), and this trend was also observed for PXR expression in males (≥1.5-fold, P < 0.05). The results presented provide important insights into hepatic physiology and function, especially drug metabolism, with respect to sex and age.

  15. The AKR gene family and modifying sex ratios in palms through abiotic stress responsiveness.

    PubMed

    Somyong, Suthasinee; Poopear, Supannee; Jomchai, Nukoon; Uthaipaisanwong, Pichahpuk; Ruang-Areerate, Panthita; Sangsrakru, Duangjai; Sonthirod, Chutima; Ukoskit, Kittipat; Tragoonrung, Somvong; Tangphatsornruang, Sithichoke

    2015-05-01

    Sex ratio (SR), the ratio of female inflorescences to total inflorescences, is one of the main yield components of oil palm (Elaeis guineensis Jacq). The SR quantitative trait locus (QTL) was recently identified on linkage (LG) 8 with a phenotype variance explained (PVE) of 11.3 %. The use of both genetic and physical mapping is one strategy for uncovering the genetic basis of the traits. Here, we report the construction of bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) and fosmid libraries, and their use for physical mapping in oil palm. Combined, the libraries consist of more than 200,000 clones, representing 6.35 genome equivalents. Physical mapping at the SR locus was implemented by incorporating the published oil palm genome sequence and positive BAC/fosmid clones as identified by colony PCR screening. Based on the previously published sequences, the interval (about 184 kb) was comprised of 19 contigs of the known sequences (~117 kb, 64 %). After, combining the 454 pyrosequences of 15 positive clones and the previously published sequences, the known sequences were revealed to cover about 82 % of the interval (~150 kb), and were used for identifying the new markers by designing 35 gene-based and 23 simple sequence repeat (SSR)-amplified primers. As a result, a putative aldo-keto reductase gene (named EgAKR1) was revealed to be a promising candidate for sex ratio determination, via controlling female inflorescence number (11 % of PVE). This was predicted from the two newly identified polymorphic marker loci (mEgSSRsr8-21LB and mEgAKR1-9) designing from EgAKR1. The functions of AKR gene families in other plant species and our promoter analysis suggested that EgAKR1 may contribute to the sex ratio through abiotic stress responsiveness.

  16. Tumor-suppressor genes that escape from X-inactivation contribute to cancer sex bias.

    PubMed

    Dunford, Andrew; Weinstock, David M; Savova, Virginia; Schumacher, Steven E; Cleary, John P; Yoda, Akinori; Sullivan, Timothy J; Hess, Julian M; Gimelbrant, Alexander A; Beroukhim, Rameen; Lawrence, Michael S; Getz, Gad; Lane, Andrew A

    2017-01-01

    There is a striking and unexplained male predominance across many cancer types. A subset of X-chromosome genes can escape X-inactivation, which would protect females from complete functional loss by a single mutation. To identify putative 'escape from X-inactivation tumor-suppressor' (EXITS) genes, we examined somatic alterations from >4,100 cancers across 21 tumor types for sex bias. Six of 783 non-pseudoautosomal region (PAR) X-chromosome genes (ATRX, CNKSR2, DDX3X, KDM5C, KDM6A, and MAGEC3) harbored loss-of-function mutations more frequently in males (based on a false discovery rate < 0.1), in comparison to zero of 18,055 autosomal and PAR genes (Fisher's exact P < 0.0001). Male-biased mutations in genes that escape X-inactivation were observed in combined analysis across many cancers and in several individual tumor types, suggesting a generalized phenomenon. We conclude that biallelic expression of EXITS genes in females explains a portion of the reduced cancer incidence in females as compared to males across a variety of tumor types.

  17. Homeotic transformation of cervical vertebrae in Hoxa-4 mutant mice.

    PubMed Central

    Horan, G S; Wu, K; Wolgemuth, D J; Behringer, R R

    1994-01-01

    Hoxa-4 (previously known as Hox-1.4) is a mouse homeobox-containing gene that is expressed in the presumptive hindbrain and spinal cord, prevertebrae, and other tissues during embryogenesis. To understand the role of Hoxa-4 during development, we generated Hoxa-4 mutant mice. Homozygous mutants were viable and fertile. Analysis of neonatal skeletons revealed the development of ribs on the seventh cervical vertebra at variable penetrance and expressivity. A low frequency of alterations in sternal morphogenesis was also observed. In addition, we analyzed the skeletons of transgenic mice that overexpress Hoxa-4 and found that the formation of the small rib anlagen that often develop on the seventh cervical vertebra was suppressed. Analysis of adult homozygous mutant skeletons revealed that the dorsal process normally associated with the second cervical vertebra was also found on the third cervical vertebra. These results demonstrate that Hoxa-4 plays a role in conferring positional information along the anteroposterior axis to specify the identity of the third and the seventh cervical vertebrae. Images Fig. 1 Fig. 2 Fig. 3 Fig. 4 Fig. 5 Fig. 6 PMID:7809093

  18. Escape of X-linked miRNA genes from meiotic sex chromosome inactivation.

    PubMed

    Sosa, Enrique; Flores, Luis; Yan, Wei; McCarrey, John R

    2015-11-01

    Past studies have indicated that transcription of all X-linked genes is repressed by meiotic sex chromosome inactivation (MSCI) during the meiotic phase of spermatogenesis in mammals. However, more recent studies have shown an increase in steady-state levels of certain X-linked miRNAs in pachytene spermatocytes, suggesting that either synthesis of these miRNAs increases or that degradation of these miRNAs decreases dramatically in these cells. To distinguish between these possibilities, we performed RNA-FISH to detect nascent transcripts from multiple miRNA genes in various spermatogenic cell types. Our results show definitively that Type I X-linked miRNA genes are subject to MSCI, as are all or most X-linked mRNA genes, whereas Type II and III X-linked miRNA genes escape MSCI by continuing ongoing, active transcription in primary spermatocytes. We corroborated these results by co-localization of RNA-FISH signals with both a corresponding DNA-FISH signal and an immunofluorescence signal for RNA polymerase II. We also found that X-linked miRNA genes that escape MSCI locate non-randomly to the periphery of the XY body, whereas genes that are subject to MSCI remain located within the XY body in pachytene spermatocytes, suggesting that the mechanism of escape of X-linked miRNA genes from MSCI involves their relocation to a position outside of the repressive chromatin domain associated with the XY body. The fact that Type II and III X-linked miRNA genes escape MSCI suggests an immediacy of function of the encoded miRNAs specifically required during the meiotic stages of spermatogenesis.

  19. Escape of X-linked miRNA genes from meiotic sex chromosome inactivation

    PubMed Central

    Sosa, Enrique; Flores, Luis; Yan, Wei; McCarrey, John R.

    2015-01-01

    Past studies have indicated that transcription of all X-linked genes is repressed by meiotic sex chromosome inactivation (MSCI) during the meiotic phase of spermatogenesis in mammals. However, more recent studies have shown an increase in steady-state levels of certain X-linked miRNAs in pachytene spermatocytes, suggesting that either synthesis of these miRNAs increases or that degradation of these miRNAs decreases dramatically in these cells. To distinguish between these possibilities, we performed RNA-FISH to detect nascent transcripts from multiple miRNA genes in various spermatogenic cell types. Our results show definitively that Type I X-linked miRNA genes are subject to MSCI, as are all or most X-linked mRNA genes, whereas Type II and III X-linked miRNA genes escape MSCI by continuing ongoing, active transcription in primary spermatocytes. We corroborated these results by co-localization of RNA-FISH signals with both a corresponding DNA-FISH signal and an immunofluorescence signal for RNA polymerase II. We also found that X-linked miRNA genes that escape MSCI locate non-randomly to the periphery of the XY body, whereas genes that are subject to MSCI remain located within the XY body in pachytene spermatocytes, suggesting that the mechanism of escape of X-linked miRNA genes from MSCI involves their relocation to a position outside of the repressive chromatin domain associated with the XY body. The fact that Type II and III X-linked miRNA genes escape MSCI suggests an immediacy of function of the encoded miRNAs specifically required during the meiotic stages of spermatogenesis. PMID:26395485

  20. Asymmetric interactions between doublesex and tissue- and sex-specific target genes mediate sexual dimorphism in beetles.

    PubMed

    Ledón-Rettig, C C; Zattara, E E; Moczek, A P

    2017-02-27

    Sexual dimorphisms fuel significant intraspecific variation and evolutionary diversification. Yet the developmental-genetic mechanisms underlying sex-specific development remain poorly understood. Here, we focus on the conserved sex-determination gene doublesex (dsx) and the mechanisms by which it mediates sex-specific development in a horned beetle species by combining systemic dsx knockdown, high-throughput sequencing of diverse tissues and a genome-wide analysis of Dsx-binding sites. We find that Dsx regulates sex-biased expression predominantly in males, that Dsx's target repertoires are highly sex- and tissue-specific and that Dsx can exercise its regulatory role via two distinct mechanisms: as a sex-specific modulator by regulating strictly sex-specific targets, or as a switch by regulating the same genes in males and females in opposite directions. More generally, our results suggest Dsx can rapidly acquire new target gene repertoires to accommodate evolutionarily novel traits, evidenced by the large and unique repertoire identified in head horns, a recent morphological innovation.

  1. Asymmetric interactions between doublesex and tissue- and sex-specific target genes mediate sexual dimorphism in beetles

    PubMed Central

    Ledón-Rettig, C. C.; Zattara, E. E.; Moczek, A. P.

    2017-01-01

    Sexual dimorphisms fuel significant intraspecific variation and evolutionary diversification. Yet the developmental-genetic mechanisms underlying sex-specific development remain poorly understood. Here, we focus on the conserved sex-determination gene doublesex (dsx) and the mechanisms by which it mediates sex-specific development in a horned beetle species by combining systemic dsx knockdown, high-throughput sequencing of diverse tissues and a genome-wide analysis of Dsx-binding sites. We find that Dsx regulates sex-biased expression predominantly in males, that Dsx's target repertoires are highly sex- and tissue-specific and that Dsx can exercise its regulatory role via two distinct mechanisms: as a sex-specific modulator by regulating strictly sex-specific targets, or as a switch by regulating the same genes in males and females in opposite directions. More generally, our results suggest Dsx can rapidly acquire new target gene repertoires to accommodate evolutionarily novel traits, evidenced by the large and unique repertoire identified in head horns, a recent morphological innovation. PMID:28239147

  2. Potential variance affecting homeotic Ultrabithorax and Antennapedia phenotypes in Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed Central

    Gibson, G; Wemple, M; van Helden, S

    1999-01-01

    Introgression of homeotic mutations into wild-type genetic backgrounds results in a wide variety of phenotypes and implies that major effect modifiers of extreme phenotypes are not uncommon in natural populations of Drosophila. A composite interval mapping procedure was used to demonstrate that one major effect locus accounts for three-quarters of the variance for haltere to wing margin transformation in Ultrabithorax flies, yet has no obvious effect on wild-type development. Several other genetic backgrounds result in enlargement of the haltere significantly beyond the normal range of haploinsufficient phenotypes, suggesting genetic variation in cofactors that mediate homeotic protein function. Introgression of Antennapedia produces lines with heritable phenotypes ranging from almost complete suppression to perfect antennal leg formation, as well as transformations that are restricted to either the distal or proximal portion of the appendage. It is argued that the existence of "potential" variance, which is genetic variation whose effects are not observable in wild-type individuals, is a prerequisite for the uncoupling of genetic from phenotypic divergence. PMID:10049924

  3. Epigenetic Regulation of the Sex Determination Gene MeGI in Polyploid Persimmon[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Kawai, Takashi; Tao, Ryutaro

    2016-01-01

    Epigenetic regulation can add a flexible layer to genetic variation, potentially enabling long-term but reversible cis-regulatory changes to an allele while maintaining its DNA sequence. Here, we present a case in which alternative epigenetic states lead to reversible sex determination in the hexaploid persimmon Diospyros kaki. Previously, we elucidated the molecular mechanism of sex determination in diploid persimmon and demonstrated the action of a Y-encoded sex determinant pseudogene called OGI, which produces small RNAs targeting the autosomal gene MeGI, resulting in separate male and female individuals (dioecy). We contrast these findings with the discovery, in hexaploid persimmon, of an additional layer of regulation in the form of DNA methylation of the MeGI promoter associated with the production of both male and female flowers in genetically male trees. Consistent with this model, developing male buds exhibited higher methylation levels across the MeGI promoter than developing female flowers from either monoecious or female trees. Additionally, a DNA methylation inhibitor induced developing male buds to form feminized flowers. Concurrently, in Y-chromosome-carrying trees, the expression of OGI is silenced by the presence of a SINE (short interspersed nuclear element)-like insertion in the OGI promoter. Our findings provide an example of an adaptive scenario involving epigenetic plasticity. PMID:27956470

  4. Mutations in SOX9, the gene responsible for campomelic dysplasia and autosomal sex reversal

    SciTech Connect

    Kwok, C.; Weller, P.A.; Guioli, S.

    1995-11-01

    Campomelic dysplasia (CD) is a skeletal malformation syndrome frequently accompanied by 46,XY sex reversal. A mutation-screening strategy using SSCP was employed to identify mutations in SOX9, the chromosome 17q24 gene responsible for CD and autosomal sex reversal in man. We have screened seven CD patients with no cytologically detectable chromosomal aberrations and two CD patients with chromosome 17 rearrangements for mutations in the entire open reading frame of SOX9. Five different mutations have been identified in six CD patients: two missense mutations in the SOX9 putative DNA binding domain (high mobility group, or HMG, box); three frameshift mutations and a splice-acceptor mutation. An identical frameshift mutation is found in two unrelated 46,XY patients, one exhibiting a male phenotype and the other displaying a female phenotype (XY sex reversal). All mutations found affect a single allele, which is consistent with a dominant mode of inheritance. No mutations were found in the SOX9 open reading frame of two patients with chromosome 17q rearrangements, suggesting that the translocations affect SOX9 expression. These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that CD results from haploinsufficiency of SOX9. 27 refs., 3 figs., 3 tabs.

  5. Sequence diversity patterns suggesting balancing selection in partially sex-linked genes of the plant Silene latifolia are not generated by demographic history or gene flow.

    PubMed

    Guirao-Rico, Sara; Sánchez-Gracia, Alejandro; Charlesworth, Deborah

    2017-03-01

    DNA sequence diversity in genes in the partially sex-linked pseudoautosomal region (PAR) of the sex chromosomes of the plant Silene latifolia is higher than expected from within-species diversity of other genes. This could be the footprint of sexually antagonistic (SA) alleles that are maintained by balancing selection in a PAR gene (or genes) and affect polymorphism in linked genome regions. SA selection is predicted to occur during sex chromosome evolution, but it is important to test whether the unexpectedly high sequence polymorphism could be explained without it, purely by the combined effects of partial linkage with the sex-determining region and the population's demographic history, including possible introgression from Silene dioica. To test this, we applied approximate Bayesian computation-based model choice to autosomal sequence diversity data, to find the most plausible scenario for the recent history of S. latifolia and then to estimate the posterior density of the most relevant parameters. We then used these densities to simulate variation to be expected at PAR genes. We conclude that an excess of variants at high frequencies at PAR genes should arise in S. latifolia populations only for genes with strong associations with fully sex-linked genes, which requires closer linkage with the fully sex-linked region than that estimated for the PAR genes where apparent deviations from neutrality were observed. These results support the need to invoke selection to explain the S. latifolia PAR gene diversity, and encourage further work to test the possibility of balancing selection due to sexual antagonism.

  6. Differential expression of the MHM region and of sex-determining-related genes during gonadal development in chicken embryos.

    PubMed

    Caetano, L C; Gennaro, F G O; Coelho, K; Araújo, F M; Vila, R A; Araújo, A; de Melo Bernardo, A; Marcondes, C R; Chuva de Sousa Lopes, S M; Ramos, E S

    2014-02-13

    The chicken (Gallus gallus) embryo has been used as a classic model system for developmental studies because of its easy accessibility for surgical manipulation during embryonic development. Sex determination in birds is chromosomally based (ZZ for males and ZW for females); however, the basic mechanism of sex determination is still unknown. Here, the dynamics of expression of candidate genes implicated in vertebrate sex determination and differentiation were studied during embryonic chicken gonadal development. Gene expression profiles were obtained before, during, and after gonadal sex differentiation in females and males for DMRT1, SOX3, SOX9, DAX1, SCII, HINTZ, HINTW, and the male hypermethylated (MHM) region. Transcripts for the HINTZ, DMRT1, DAX1, SCII, and SOX9 genes were observed in both sexes, but expression was higher in male gonads and may be correlated with testicular differentiation. The expression patterns of HINTW, SOX3, and MHM suggest that they may act in ovary development and may be involved in meiosis entry. MHM was upregulated and DMRT1 was downregulated in females at the same developmental stage. This may indicate a regulation of DMRT1 by MHM ncRNA. Similar dynamics were observed between HINTW and HINTZ. This study reports on the MHM expression profile during gonadal development and its correlation with the expression of genes involved in vertebrate sex determination.

  7. deadpan, an essential pan-neural gene encoding an HLH protein, acts as a denominator in Drosophila sex determination.

    PubMed

    Younger-Shepherd, S; Vaessin, H; Bier, E; Jan, L Y; Jan, Y N

    1992-09-18

    In Drosophila, sex is determined by the X:A ratio. One major numerator element on the X chromosome is sisterless-b (sis-b), also called scute, which encodes an HLH-type transcription factor. We report here that an essential pan-neural gene, the autosomal HLH gene deadpan (dpn), acts as a denominator element. As revealed by dosage-dependent dominant interactions, males die with too high a ratio of sc+ to dpn+, caused by misexpression of Sex lethal (Sxl) in embryos, and females die with too low a ratio of sc+ to dpn+, because of altered embryonic Sxl expression. In addition, we found that the HLH gene extramacrochaetae (emc), like daughterless (da), is needed maternally for proper communication of the X:A ratio, thus supporting the idea that a set of HLH genes comprises a functional cassette that makes a sensitive and stable genetic switch used in both neural determination and sex determination.

  8. Sex-dependent association of common variants of microcephaly genes with brain structure.

    PubMed

    Rimol, Lars M; Agartz, Ingrid; Djurovic, Srdjan; Brown, Andrew A; Roddey, J Cooper; Kähler, Anna K; Mattingsdal, Morten; Athanasiu, Lavinia; Joyner, Alexander H; Schork, Nicholas J; Halgren, Eric; Sundet, Kjetil; Melle, Ingrid; Dale, Anders M; Andreassen, Ole A

    2010-01-05

    Loss-of-function mutations in the genes associated with primary microcephaly (MCPH) reduce human brain size by about two-thirds, without producing gross abnormalities in brain organization or physiology and leaving other organs largely unaffected [Woods CG, et al. (2005) Am J Hum Genet 76:717-728]. There is also evidence suggesting that MCPH genes have evolved rapidly in primates and humans and have been subjected to selection in recent human evolution [Vallender EJ, et al. (2008) Trends Neurosci 31:637-644]. Here, we show that common variants of MCPH genes account for some of the common variation in brain structure in humans, independently of disease status. We investigated the correlations of SNPs from four MCPH genes with brain morphometry phenotypes obtained with MRI. We found significant, sex-specific associations between common, nonexonic, SNPs of the genes CDK5RAP2, MCPH1, and ASPM, with brain volume or cortical surface area in an ethnically homogenous Norwegian discovery sample (n = 287), including patients with mental illness. The most strongly associated SNP findings were replicated in an independent North American sample (n = 656), which included patients with dementia. These results are consistent with the view that common variation in brain structure is associated with genetic variants located in nonexonic, presumably regulatory, regions.

  9. Neutral evolution of the sex-determining gene transformer in Drosophila.

    PubMed Central

    McAllister, B F; McVean, G A

    2000-01-01

    The amino acid sequence of the transformer (tra) gene exhibits an extremely rapid rate of evolution among Drosophila species, although the gene performs a critical step in sex determination. These changes in amino acid sequence are the result of either natural selection or neutral evolution. To differentiate between selective and neutral causes of this evolutionary change, analyses of both intraspecific and interspecific patterns of molecular evolution of tra gene sequences are presented. Sequences of 31 tra alleles were obtained from Drosophila americana. Many replacement and silent nucleotide variants are present among the alleles; however, the distribution of this sequence variation is consistent with neutral evolution. Sequence evolution was also examined among six species representative of the genus Drosophila. For most lineages and most regions of the gene, both silent and replacement substitutions have accumulated in a constant, clock-like manner. In exon 3 of D. virilis and D. americana we find evidence for an elevated rate of nonsynonymous substitution, but no statistical support for a greater rate of nonsynonymous relative to synonymous substitutions. Both levels of analysis of the tra sequence suggest that, although the gene is evolving at a rapid pace, these changes are neutral in function. PMID:10747064

  10. A Novel Dominant Transformer Allele of the Sex-Determining Gene Her-1 of Caenorhabditis Elegans

    PubMed Central

    Trent, C.; Wood, W. B.; Horvitz, H. R.

    1988-01-01

    We have characterized a novel dominant allele of the sex-determining gene her-1 of Caenorhabditis elegans. This allele, called n695, results in the incomplete transformation of XX animals into phenotypic males. Previously characterized recessive her-1 alleles transform XO animals into phenotypic hermaphrodites. We have identified five new recessive her-1 mutations as intragenic suppressors of n695. Three of these suppressors are weak, temperature-sensitive alleles. We show that the recessive her-1 mutations are loss-of-function alleles, and that the her-1(n695) mutation results in a gain-of-function at the her-1 locus. The existence of dominant and recessive alleles that cause opposite phenotypic transformations demonstrates that the her-1 gene acts to control sexual identity in C. elegans. PMID:3220248

  11. Prohibitin-2 gene reveals sex-related differences in the salmon louse Caligus rogercresseyi.

    PubMed

    Farlora, Rodolfo; Nuñez-Acuña, Gustavo; Gallardo-Escárate, Cristian

    2015-06-10

    Prohibitins are evolutionarily conserved proteins present in multiple cellular compartments, and are involved in diverse cellular processes, including steroid hormone transcription and gametogenesis. In the present study, we report for the first time the characterization of the prohibitin-2 (Phb2) gene in the sea lice Caligus rogercresseyi. The CrPhb2 cDNA showed a total length of 1406 bp, which contained a predicted open reading frame (ORF) of 894 base pairs (bp) encoding for 298 amino acids. Multiple sequence alignments of prohibitin proteins from other arthropods revealed a high degree of amino acid sequence conservation. In silico Illumina read counts and RT-qPCR analyses showed a sex-dependent differential expression, with mRNA levels exhibiting a 1.7-fold (RT-qPCR) increase in adult females compared with adult males. A total of nine single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) were identified, three were located in the 5' UTR of the Phb2 messenger and six in the ORF, but no mutations associated with sex were found. These results contribute to expand the present knowledge of the reproduction-related genes in C. rogercresseyi, and may be useful in future experiments aimed at controlling the impacts of sea lice in fish farming.

  12. A rapid sex-identification test for the forest musk deer (Moschus berezovskii) based on the ZFX/ZFY gene.

    PubMed

    Qiao, Yanyun; Zou, Fangdong; Wei, Kun; Yue, Bisong

    2007-05-01

    We describe a rapid sex-identification method for the forest musk deer (Moschus berezovskii) using PCR based on zinc-finger protein-encoding genes (ZFX/ZFY) located on the X and Y chromosomes. Fragments of the ZFX and ZFY genes were amplified and sequenced. The ZFX and ZFY fragments were identical in length and 94% similar in nucleotide sequence. Specific primers for forest musk deer sex identification were designed on the basis of sequence differences between ZFX and ZFY. All the primers were multiplexed in single-tube PCR. Both male and female forest musk deer showed amplification bands of 447 bp and 212 bp separated in agarose gels. A sex-specific 278-bp band was amplified only from males. These results show that testing by PCR for the presence of the 278-bp sequence is a rapid and reliable method for sex identification.

  13. A Homolog of Blade-On-Petiole 1 and 2 (BOP1/2) Controls Internode Length and Homeotic Changes of the Barley Inflorescence1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Taketa, Shin; Mascher, Martin; Yuo, Takahisa; Beier, Sebastian; Taudien, Stefan; Morgante, Michele

    2016-01-01

    Inflorescence architecture in small-grain cereals has a direct effect on yield and is an important selection target in breeding for yield improvement. We analyzed the recessive mutation laxatum-a (lax-a) in barley (Hordeum vulgare), which causes pleiotropic changes in spike development, resulting in (1) extended rachis internodes conferring a more relaxed inflorescence, (2) broadened base of the lemma awns, (3) thinner grains that are largely exposed due to reduced marginal growth of the palea and lemma, and (4) and homeotic conversion of lodicules into two stamenoid structures. Map-based cloning enforced by mapping-by-sequencing of the mutant lax-a locus enabled the identification of a homolog of BLADE-ON-PETIOLE1 (BOP1) and BOP2 as the causal gene. Interestingly, the recently identified barley uniculme4 gene also is a BOP1/2 homolog and has been shown to regulate tillering and leaf sheath development. While the Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) BOP1 and BOP2 genes act redundantly, the barley genes contribute independent effects in specifying the developmental growth of vegetative and reproductive organs, respectively. Analysis of natural genetic diversity revealed strikingly different haplotype diversity for the two paralogous barley genes, likely affected by the respective genomic environments, since no indication for an active selection process was detected. PMID:27208226

  14. Historical divergence and gene flow: coalescent analyses of mitochondrial, autosomal and sex-linked loci in Passerina buntings.

    PubMed

    Carling, Matthew D; Lovette, Irby J; Brumfield, Robb T

    2010-06-01

    Quantifying the role of gene flow during the divergence of closely related species is crucial to understanding the process of speciation. We collected DNA sequence data from 20 loci (one mitochondrial, 13 autosomal, and six sex-linked) for population samples of Lazuli Buntings (Passerina amoena) and Indigo Buntings (Passerina cyanea) (Aves: Cardinalidae) to test explicitly between a strict allopatric speciation model and a model in which divergence occurred despite postdivergence gene flow. Likelihood ratio tests of coalescent-based population genetic parameter estimates indicated a strong signal of postdivergence gene flow and a strict allopatric speciation model was rejected. Analyses of partitioned datasets (mitochondrial, autosomal, and sex-linked) suggest the overall gene flow patterns are driven primarily by autosomal gene flow, as there is no evidence of mitochondrial gene flow and we were unable to reject an allopatric speciation model for the sex-linked data. This pattern is consistent with either a parapatric divergence model or repeated periods of allopatry with gene flow occurring via secondary contact. These results are consistent with the low fitness of female avian hybrids under Haldane's rule and demonstrate that sex-linked loci likely are important in the initial generation of reproductive isolation, not just its maintenance.

  15. Evidence that sex chromosome asynapsis, rather than excess Y gene dosage, is responsible for the meiotic impairment of XYY mice.

    PubMed

    Rodriguez, T A; Burgoyne, P S

    2000-01-01

    There is extensive evidence for the existence of a meiotic checkpoint that acts to eliminate spermatocytes that fail to achieve full sex chromosome synapsis at the pachytene stage of the first meiotic prophase. XYY mice are nearly always sterile, with clear signs of meiotic impairment, and sex chromosome asynapsis has been proposed to underlie this impairment. However, a study of XYY*(X) mice (mice having three sex chromosomes but only a single dose of Y genes) revealed that these mice are fertile, and thus implicated Y gene dosage as a major factor in the sterility of XYY mice. To address this question further, sex chromosome synapsis and spermatogenic proficiency were compared between XYY*(X) and XYY mice generated in the same litters. This established that differences in spermatogenic proficiency within and between the two genotypes correlated with the frequency of radial trivalent formation (full sex chromosome synapsis); XYY*(X) males, as a group, had double the radial trivalent frequency of XYY males. This observation provides strong support for the view that sex chromosome asynapsis (or some consequence thereof), rather than Y gene dosage, is the major factor leading to the meiotic impairment of XYY mice.

  16. Sex determination of ovine embryos by SRY and amelogenin (AMEL) genes using maternal circulating cell free DNA.

    PubMed

    Saberivand, Adel; Ahsan, Sima

    2016-01-01

    Simple and precise methods for sex determination in animals are a pre-requisite for a number of applications in animal production and forensics. Some of the existing methods depend only on the detection of Y-chromosome specific sequences. However, the detection of Y and X-chromosome specific sequences is advantageous. In the present study the accuracy of sex determination by SRY (sex-determining region Y) and AMEL (Amelogenin) gene detection was assessed using a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) of DNA extracted from free fetal cells in maternal blood, which is noninvasive for fetus and easier to collect. The PCR amplification of SRY primers produced a single band of 171bp from ewes bearing a male fetus, whereas no band was amplified from the DNA extracted from ewes pregnant to a female fetus. Moreover, two bands of 182 and 242bp in male and a single band of 242 in female fetuses were produced by AMEL gene primers in the PCR reaction. Using this technique 100% of samples were successfully sexed, excluding twins. In conclusion, we demonstrated that sex determination using DNA of free fetal cells in maternal plasma is efficient using both SRY and AMEL gene sequences. It also is evident that this method is not suitable for sex determination of twin pregnancies.

  17. Conflict between feminizing sex ratio distorters and an autosomal masculinizing gene in the terrestrial isopod Armadillidium vulgare Latr.

    PubMed

    Rigaud, T; Juchault, P

    1993-02-01

    Female sex determination in the pill bug Armadillidium vulgare is frequently under the control of feminizing parasitic sex factors (PSF). One of these PSF is an intracytoplasmic Wolbachia-like bacterium (F), while the other (f) is suspected of being an F-bacterial DNA sequence unstably integrated into the host genome. In most wild populations harboring PSF, all individuals are genetic males (ZZ), and female phenotypes occur only due to the presence of PSF which overrides the male determinant carried by the Z chromosome (females are thus ZZ +F or ZZ +f neo-females). Here we report the effects of the conflict between these PSF and a dominant autosomal masculinizing gene (M) on phenotypes. The M gene is able to override the feminizing effect of the f sex factor and, consequently, male sex may be restored. However, M is unable to restore male sex when competing with the F bacteria. It seems that the main effect of M is to delay the expression of F bacteria slightly, inducing intersex phenotypes. Most of these intersexes are functional females, able to transmit the masculinizing gene. The frequency of M and its effects on the sex ratio in wild populations are discussed.

  18. A comprehensive transcriptome provides candidate genes for sex determination/differentiation and SSR/SNP markers in yellow catfish.

    PubMed

    Chen, Xin; Mei, Jie; Wu, Junjie; Jing, Jing; Ma, Wenge; Zhang, Jin; Dan, Cheng; Wang, Weimin; Gui, Jian-Fang

    2015-04-01

    Sex dimorphic growth pattern has significant theory and application implications in fish. Recently, a Y- and X-specific allele marker-assisted sex control technique has been developed for mass production of all-male population in yellow catfish (Pelteobagrus fulvidraco), but the genetic information for sex determination and sex control breeding has remained unclear. Here, we attempted to provide the first insight into a comprehensive transcriptome covering multiple tissues from XX females, XY males, and YY super-males of yellow catfish by using 454 GS-FLX platform, for a better assembly and gene coverage. A total of 1,202,933 high quality reads (about 540 Mbp) were obtained and assembled into 28,297 contigs and 141,951 singletons. BLASTX searches against the NCBI non-redundant protein database (nr) led a total of 52,564 unique sequences including 18,748 contigs and 33,816 singletons to match 25,669 known or predicted unique proteins. All of them with annotated function were categorized by gene ontology (GO) analysis, and 712 were assigned to reproduction and reproductive process. Some potential genes relevant to reproductive system including steroid hormone biosynthesis and GnRH (gonadotropin-releasing hormone) signaling pathway were further identified by Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) analysis; and at least 21 sex determination and differentiation-related genes, such as Dmrt1, Sox9a/b, Cyp19b, WT1, and AMH were identified and characterized. Additionally, a total of 82,794 simple sequence repeats (SSRs), 26,450 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), and 4,145 insertions and deletions (INDELs) were revealed from the transcriptome data. Therefore, the current transcriptome resources highlight further studies on sex-control breeding in yellow catfish and will benefit future studies on reproduction and sex determination in teleost fish.

  19. Genome Wide Analysis of Sex Difference in Gene Expression Profiles of Bone Formations Using sfx Mice and BXD RI Strains

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Yue; Zhu, Xiaodong; Wang, Lishi; Liu, Xiaoyun; Lu, Lu; Jiao, Yan

    2014-01-01

    The objective of this study is to identify sex differentially expressed genes in bone using a mouse model of spontaneous fracture, sfx, which lacks the gene for L-gulonolactone oxidase (Gulo), a key enzyme in the ascorbic acid (AA) synthesis pathway. We first identified the genes that are differentially expressed in the femur between female and male in sfx mice. We then analyzed the potential gene network among those differentially expressed genes with whole genome expression profiles generated using spleens of female and male mice of a total of 67 BXD (C57BL/6J X DBA/2J) recombinant inbred (RI) and other strains. Our result indicated that there was a sex difference in the whole genome profiles in sfx mice as measured by the proportion of up- and downregulated genes. Several genes in the pathway of bone development are differentially expressed between the male and female of sfx mice. Comparison of gene network of up- and downregulated bone relevant genes also suggests a sex difference. PMID:25133246

  20. The Andromonoecious Sex Determination Gene Predates the Separation of Cucumis and Citrullus Genera

    PubMed Central

    Boualem, Adnane; Lemhemdi, Afef; Sari, Marie-Agnes; Pignoly, Sarah; Troadec, Christelle; Abou Choucha, Fadi; Solmaz, Ilknur; Sari, Nebahat; Dogimont, Catherine; Bendahmane, Abdelhafid

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the evolution of sex determination in plants requires the cloning and the characterization of sex determination genes. Monoecy is characterized by the presence of both male and female flowers on the same plant. Andromonoecy is characterized by plants carrying both male and bisexual flowers. In watermelon, the transition between these two sexual forms is controlled by the identity of the alleles at the A locus. We previously showed, in two Cucumis species, melon and cucumber, that the transition from monoecy to andromonoecy results from mutations in 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid synthase (ACS) gene, ACS-7/ACS2. To test whether the ACS-7/ACS2 function is conserved in cucurbits, we cloned and characterized ClACS7 in watermelon. We demonstrated co-segregation of ClACS7, the homolog of CmACS-7/CsACS2, with the A locus. Sequence analysis of ClACS7 in watermelon accessions identified three ClACS7 isoforms, two in andromonoecious and one in monoecious lines. To determine whether the andromonoecious phenotype is due to a loss of ACS enzymatic activity, we expressed and assayed the activity of the three protein isoforms. Like in melon and cucumber, the isoforms from the andromonoecious lines showed reduced to no enzymatic activity and the isoform from the monoecious line was active. Consistent with this, the mutations leading andromonoecy were clustered in the active site of the enzyme. Based on this, we concluded that active ClACS7 enzyme leads to the development of female flowers in monoecious lines, whereas a reduction of enzymatic activity yields hermaphrodite flowers. ClACS7, like CmACS-7/CsACS2 in melon and cucumber, is highly expressed in carpel primordia of buds determined to develop carpels and not in male flowers. Based on this finding and previous investigations, we concluded that the monoecy gene, ACS7, likely predated the separation of the Cucumis and Citrullus genera. PMID:27171236

  1. Changes in gonadal gene network by exogenous ligands in temperature-dependent sex determination.

    PubMed

    Matsumoto, Yuiko; Yatsu, Ryohei; Taylor, Caitlin; Crews, David

    2013-06-01

    We examined the expression of candidate sex-determining genes in the red-eared slider turtle (Trachemys scripta) during the temperature-sensitive period (TSP). Aromatase and Rspo1 were used as markers of ovarian differentiation and Sox9 was used as a marker of testicular differentiation. Eggs were incubated at a male-producing temperature (26 °C or MPT) and a female-producing temperature (31 °C or FPT). First, eggs at the beginning of the TSP (stage 16) were topically treated with the steroid hormones 17β-estradiol (E2), testosterone in combination with aromatase inhibitor (AI+T), the E2 antagonist (ICI 182 780), and the androgen antagonist (flutamide). Secondly, gonads were removed at stage 16 and treated in vitro with E2, AI+T, or hormone antagonists. At the FPT, AI+T in ovo suppressed aromatase and Rspo1, while activating Sox9. At the MPT, E2 treatment rapidly increased aromatase and Rspo1, while suppressing Sox9. Treatment with the E2 antagonist in ovo decreased aromatase at the FPT. Treatment with the androgen antagonist in ovo increased aromatase and Rspo1 at early time points at MPT and decreased Sox9 at MPT at later developmental stages. Treatment of isolated gonads cultured in vitro with AI+T at FPT decreased aromatase and Rspo1 and E2 increased the expression of these genes at MPT. In vitro treatment with E2 antagonist suppressed aromatase and Rspo1 expression at FPT. Overall, our results suggest that exogenous ligands dictate gonadal development by redirecting the expression of candidate sex-determining genes within the genetic cascades induced by temperature.

  2. Charactering the ZFAND3 gene mapped in the sex-determining locus in hybrid tilapia (Oreochromis spp.)

    PubMed Central

    Ma, Keyi; Liao, Minghui; Liu, Feng; Ye, Baoqing; Sun, Fei; Yue, Gen Hua

    2016-01-01

    Zinc finger AN1-type domain 3 (ZFAND3) is essential for spermatogenesis in mice. However, its function in teleosts remains unclear. In this study, we characterized the ZFAND3 gene (termed as OsZFAND3) in an important food fish, tilapia. The OsZFAND3 cDNA sequence is 1,050 bp in length, containing an ORF of 615 bp, which encodes a putative peptide of 204 amino acid residues. Quantitative real-time PCR revealed that the OsZFAND3 transcripts were exclusively expressed in the testis and ovary. In situ hybridization showed that the high expression of OsZFAND3 transcripts was predominantly localized in the spermatocyte and spermatid. These results suggest that OsZFAND3 is involved in male germ cell maturation. Three single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) were detected in the introns of OsZFAND3. The OsZFAND3 gene was mapped in the sex-determining locus on linkage group 1 (LG1). The three SNPs in the OsZFAND3 gene were strictly associated with sex phenotype, suggesting that the OsZFAND3 gene is tightly linked to the sex-determining locus. Our study provides new insights into the functions of the OsZFAND3 gene in tilapia and a foundation for further detailed analysis of the OsZFAND3 gene in sex determination and differentiation. PMID:27137111

  3. Integrative transcriptome meta-analysis reveals widespread sex-biased gene expression at the human fetal–maternal interface

    PubMed Central

    Buckberry, Sam; Bianco-Miotto, Tina; Bent, Stephen J.; Dekker, Gustaaf A.; Roberts, Claire T.

    2014-01-01

    As males and females share highly similar genomes, the regulation of many sexually dimorphic traits is constrained to occur through sex-biased gene regulation. There is strong evidence that human males and females differ in terms of growth and development in utero and that these divergent growth strategies appear to place males at increased risk when in sub-optimal conditions. Since the placenta is the interface of maternal–fetal exchange throughout pregnancy, these developmental differences are most likely orchestrated by differential placental function. To date, progress in this field has been hampered by a lack of genome-wide information on sex differences in placental gene expression. Therefore, our motivation in this study was to characterize sex-biased gene expression in the human placenta. We obtained gene expression data for >300 non-pathological placenta samples from 11 microarray datasets and applied mapping-based array probe re-annotation and inverse-variance meta-analysis methods which showed that >140 genes (false discovery rate (FDR) <0.05) are differentially expressed between male and female placentae. A majority of these genes (>60%) are autosomal, many of which are involved in high-level regulatory processes such as gene transcription, cell growth and proliferation and hormonal function. Of particular interest, we detected higher female expression from all seven genes in the LHB-CGB cluster, which includes genes involved in placental development, the maintenance of pregnancy and maternal immune tolerance of the conceptus. These results demonstrate that sex-biased gene expression in the normal human placenta occurs across the genome and includes genes that are central to growth, development and the maintenance of pregnancy. PMID:24867328

  4. Estrogen receptor-alpha gene expression in the cortex: sex differences during development and in adulthood.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Melinda E; Westberry, Jenne M; Trout, Amanda L

    2011-03-01

    17β-estradiol is a hormone with far-reaching organizational, activational and protective actions in both male and female brains. The organizational effects of early estrogen exposure are essential for long-lasting behavioral and cognitive functions. Estradiol mediates many of its effects through the intracellular receptors, estrogen receptor-alpha (ERα) and estrogen receptor-beta (ERβ). In the rodent cerebral cortex, estrogen receptor expression is high early in postnatal life and declines dramatically as the animal approaches puberty. This decline is accompanied by decreased expression of ERα mRNA. This change in expression is the same in both males and females in the developing isocortex and hippocampus. An understanding of the molecular mechanisms involved in the regulation of estrogen receptor alpha (ERα) gene expression is critical for understanding the developmental, as well as changes in postpubertal expression of the estrogen receptor. One mechanism of suppressing gene expression is by the epigenetic modification of the promoter regions by DNA methylation that results in gene silencing. The decrease in ERα mRNA expression during development is accompanied by an increase in promoter methylation. Another example of regulation of ERα gene expression in the adult cortex is the changes that occur following neuronal injury. Many animal studies have demonstrated that the endogenous estrogen, 17β-estradiol, is neuroprotective. Specifically, low levels of estradiol protect the cortex from neuronal death following middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO). In females, this protection is mediated through an ERα-dependent mechanism. ERα expression is rapidly increased following MCAO in females, but not in males. This increase is accompanied by a decrease in methylation of the promoter suggesting a return to the developmental program of gene expression within neurons. Taken together, during development and in adulthood, regulation of ERα gene expression in the

  5. Characterization of an AGAMOUS homologue from the conifer black spruce (Picea mariana) that produces floral homeotic conversions when expressed in Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Rutledge, R; Regan, S; Nicolas, O; Fobert, P; Côté, C; Bosnich, W; Kauffeldt, C; Sunohara, G; Séguin, A; Stewart, D

    1998-09-01

    Advances in elucidating the molecular processes controlling flower initiation and development have provided unique opportunities to investigate the developmental genetics of non-flowering plants. In addition to providing insights into the evolutionary aspects of seed plants, identification of genes regulating reproductive organ development in gymnosperms could help determine the level of homology with current models of flower induction and floral organ identity. Based upon this, we have searched for putative developmental regulators in conifers with amino acid sequence homology to MADS-box genes. PCR cloning using degenerate primers targeted to the MADS-box domain revealed the presence of over 27 MADS-box genes within black spruce (Picea mariana), including several with extensive homology to either AP1 or AGAMOUS, both known to regulate flower development in Arabidopsis. This indicates that like angiosperms, conifers contain a large and diverse MADS-box gene family that probably includes regulators of reproductive organ development. Confirmation of this was provided by the characterization of an AGAMOUS-like cDNA clone called SAG1, whose conservation of intron position and tissue-specific expression within reproductive organs indicate that it is a homologue of AGAMOUS. Functional homology with AGAMOUS was demonstrated by the ability of SAG1 to produce homeotic conversions of sepals to carpels and petals to stamens when ectopically expressed in transgenic Arabidopsis. This suggests that some of the genetic pathways controlling flower and cone development are homologous, and antedate the 300-million-year-old divergence of angiosperms and gymnosperms.

  6. Evolutionary Strata on the X Chromosomes of the Dioecious Plant Silene latifolia: Evidence From New Sex-Linked Genes

    PubMed Central

    Bergero, Roberta; Forrest, Alan; Kamau, Esther; Charlesworth, Deborah

    2007-01-01

    Despite its recent evolutionary origin, the sex chromosome system of the plant Silene latifolia shows signs of progressive suppression of recombination having created evolutionary strata of different X–Y divergence on sex chromosomes. However, even after 8 years of effort, this result is based on analyses of five sex-linked gene sequences, and the maximum divergence (and thus the age of this plant's sex chromosome system) has remained uncertain. More genes are therefore needed. Here, by segregation analysis of intron size variants (ISVS) and single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), we identify three new Y-linked genes, one being duplicated on the Y chromosome, and test for evolutionary strata. All the new genes have homologs on the X and Y chromosomes. Synonymous divergence estimated between the X and Y homolog pairs is within the range of those already reported. Genetic mapping of the new X-linked loci shows that the map is the same in all three families that have been studied so far and that X–Y divergence increases with genetic distance from the pseudoautosomal region. We can now conclude that the divergence value is saturated, confirming the cessation of X–Y recombination in the evolution of the sex chromosomes at ∼10–20 MYA. PMID:17287532

  7. Identification of genes expressed in the sex pheromone gland of the black cutworm Agrotis ipsilon with putative roles in sex pheromone biosynthesis and transport

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    we proposed possible A. ipsilon biosynthesis pathways for major and minor sex pheromone components. Conclusions Our study identified genes potentially involved in sex pheromone biosynthesis and transport in A. ipsilon. The identified genes are likely to play essential roles in sex pheromone production, transport and degradation and could serve as targets to interfere with pheromone release. The identification of highly expressed CSPs and OBPs in the pheromone gland suggests that they may play a role in the binding, transport and release of sex pheromones during sex pheromone production in A. ipsilon and other Lepidoptera insects. PMID:24053512

  8. Amoebozoans Are Secretly but Ancestrally Sexual: Evidence for Sex Genes and Potential Novel Crossover Pathways in Diverse Groups of Amoebae

    PubMed Central

    Wood, Fiona C.; Katz, Laura A.; Cerón-Romero, Mario A.; Gorfu, Lydia A.

    2017-01-01

    Sex is beneficial in eukaryotes as it can increase genetic diversity, reshuffle their genomes, and purge deleterious mutations. Yet, its evolution remains a mystery. The eukaryotic clade supergroup Amoebozoa encompasses diverse lineages of polymorphic amoeboid forms, including both free-living and parasitic lineages. The group is generally believed to be asexual, though recent studies show that some of its members are implicated in cryptic forms of sexual cycles. In this study, we conduct a comprehensive inventory and analysis of genes involved in meiosis and related processes, in order to investigate the evolutionary history of sex in the clade. We analyzed genomic and transcriptomic data of 39 amoebozoans representing all major subclades of Amoebozoa. Our results show that Amoebozoa possess most of the genes exclusive to meiosis but lack genes encoding synaptonemal complex (SC). The absence of SC genes is discussed in the context of earlier studies that reported ultrastructural evidence of SC in some amoebae. We also find interclade and intrageneric variation in sex gene distribution, indicating diversity in sexual pathways in the group. Particularly, members of Mycetozoa engage in a novel sexual pathway independent of the universally conserved meiosis initiator gene, SPO11. Our findings strongly suggest that not only do amoebozoans possess sex genes in their genomes, but also, based on the transcriptome evidence, the present sex genes are functional. We conclude that Amoebozoa is ancestrally sexual, contrary to the long held belief that most of its members are asexual. Thus, asexuality in Amoebozoa, if confirmed to be present, is a derived-trait that appeared later in their evolution. PMID:28087686

  9. Ontogenesis of gonadal aromatase gene expression in atlantic silverside (Menidia menidia) populations with genetic and temperature-dependent sex determination.

    PubMed

    Duffy, Tara A; Picha, Matthew E; Won, Eugene T; Borski, Russell J; McElroy, Anne E; Conover, David O

    2010-08-01

    Cytochrome P450 aromatase (P450arom), an enzyme that converts testosterone to 17beta-estradiol, is an important mediator of sex determination in teleosts with genetic sex determination (GSD) and temperature-dependent sex determination (TSD). We compared the ontogenetic expression of P450arom in two populations of Atlantic silversides, Menidia menidia, which exhibit TSD (South Carolina) or GSD (Nova Scotia, Canada) using quantitative, real-time polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR). Embryos and newly hatched larvae were reared at an intermediate sex ratio-producing temperature (21 degrees C), and older larvae and juveniles were reared at temperatures that feminize (15 degrees C) and masculinize (28 degrees C) to assess the temperature response of P450arom during development. Before sex determination, embryos and newly-hatched larvae displayed negligible P450arom expression, indicating minimal upregulation of this gene before sex determination. Gene expression increased in both populations during sex differentiation. Nova Scotia fish with GSD exhibited presumptive male- and female-like expression levels during early sex differentiation that were not influenced by temperature. South Carolina fish displayed low levels of expression at 28 degrees C with significantly heightened expression in some individuals at 15 degrees C, indicating that P450arom is temperature sensitive in the population with TSD. Populations also differed in the timing and maximal levels of P450arom expression, with fish from Nova Scotia exhibiting both the highest and earliest increase in expression in presumptive females. Our results support the hypothesis that P450arom is involved in female sex differentiation in this species, but is only responsive to temperature in M. menidia populations that exhibit TSD.

  10. Quantitative Developmental Analysis of Homeotic Changes in the Inflorescence of Philodendron (Araceae)

    PubMed Central

    Barabé, Denis; Lacroix, Christian; Jeune, Bernard

    2008-01-01

    Background and Aims The inflorescence of Philodendron constitutes an interesting morphological model to analyse the phenomenon of homeosis quantitatively at the floral level. The specific goals of this study were (1) to characterize and quantify the range of homeotic transformation in Philodendron billietiae, and (2) to test the hypothesis that the nature of flowers surrounding atypical bisexual flowers (ABFs) channel the morphological potentialities of atypical bisexual flowers. Methods Inflorescences of P. billietiae at different stages of development were observed using SEM. The number of appendices in male, female and sterile flowers were counted on 11 young inflorescences (5–6 flowers per inflorescence). The number of staminodes and carpels on ABFs were counted on 19 inflorescences (n = 143). These data were used for regression and ANOVA analyses. Results There was an average of 4·1 stamens per male flower, 9·8 carpels per female flower and 6·8 staminodes per sterile male flower. There was an average of 7·3 floral appendices per atypical flower. Staminodes and carpels are inserted on the same whorl in ABFs. A negative exponential relationship was found between the average number of staminodes and the number of carpels in ABFs. If only the ABFs consisting of less than six carpels are considered, there is a linear relationship between the number of carpels and the average number of staminodes. The value of the slope of the regression equation indicates that on average, in P. billietiae, 1·36 carpels are replaced by one staminode. Conclusions In P. billietiae, the number of appendages in female flowers imposes a constraint on the maximum total number of appendages (carpels and staminodes) that can develop on ABFs. The quantitative analyses indicate that the average number of different types of floral appendages on an ABF and the number of organs involved in a homeotic transformation are two independent phenomena. PMID:18356291

  11. A theoretical model for the regulation of Sex-lethal, a gene that controls sex determination and dosage compensation in Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed Central

    Louis, Matthieu; Holm, Liisa; Sánchez, Lucas; Kaufman, Marcelle

    2003-01-01

    Cell fate commitment relies upon making a choice between different developmental pathways and subsequently remembering that choice. Experimental studies have thoroughly investigated this central theme in biology for sex determination. In the somatic cells of Drosophila melanogaster, Sex-lethal (Sxl) is the master regulatory gene that specifies sexual identity. We have developed a theoretical model for the initial sex-specific regulation of Sxl expression. The model is based on the well-documented molecular details of the system and uses a stochastic formulation of transcription. Numerical simulations allow quantitative assessment of the role of different regulatory mechanisms in achieving a robust switch. We establish on a formal basis that the autoregulatory loop involved in the alternative splicing of Sxl primary transcripts generates an all-or-none bistable behavior and constitutes an efficient stabilization and memorization device. The model indicates that production of a small amount of early Sxl proteins leaves the autoregulatory loop in its off state. Numerical simulations of mutant genotypes enable us to reproduce and explain the phenotypic effects of perturbations induced in the dosage of genes whose products participate in the early Sxl promoter activation. PMID:14668388

  12. Analysis of HLA and disease susceptibility: Chromosome 6 genes and sex influence long-QT phenotype

    SciTech Connect

    Weitkamp, L.R.; Moss, A.J.; Hall, W.J.; Robinson, J.L.; Guttormsen, S.A.; Lewis, R.A.; MacCluer, J.W.; Schwartz, P.J.; Locati, E.H.; Tzivoni, D.

    1994-12-01

    The long-QT (LQT) syndrome is a genetically complex disorder that is characterized by syncope and fatal ventricular arrhythmias. LQT syndrome, as defined by a prolonged electrocardiographic QT interval, has a higher incidence in females than in males and does not exhibit Mendelian transmission patterns in all families. Among those families that are nearly consistent with Mendelian transmission, linkage between a locus for LQT syndrome and the H-ras-1 locus on the short arm of chromosome 11 has been reported in some families but not in others. Earlier analyses suggesting that LQT syndrome might be caused by a gene in the HLA region of chromosome 6 were not confirmed by standard linkage analyses. Here, we present an analysis of HLA haplotype sharing among affected pedigree members, showing an excess of haplotype sharing in a previously published Japanese pedigree and possibly also in 15 families of European descent. The haplotypes shared by affected individuals derive from both affected and unaffected parents. In an analysis of independent (unrelated) HLA haplotypes, we also found a nonrandom distribution of HLA-DR genes in LQT syndrome patients compared with controls, suggesting an association between the LQT phenotype and specific HLA-DR genes. Our data indicate that DR2 has a protective effect and, particularly in males, that DR7 may increase susceptibility to the LQT syndrome. Thus, LQT syndrome may be influenced by genes on chromosomes 11 and 6, possibly with a sex-specific effect. These results provide a model for an effect of HLA-region genes inherited from either parent on the expression of an illness that may be determined principally by alleles at loci not linked to HLA.

  13. Sex and litter effects on anxiety and DNA methylation levels of stress and neurotrophin genes in adolescent rats.

    PubMed

    Kosten, Therese A; Huang, Wen; Nielsen, David A

    2014-04-01

    Maternal care variations associate with DNA methylation of the glucocorticoid receptor gene, Nr3c1, in hippocampus at a nerve-growth factor-inducible protein 1 binding site. Epigenetic regulation of brain-derived neurotrophin factor is affected by early stress. These systems contribute to anxiety and fear. Early stress has sex-dependent effects perhaps reflecting sex differences in maternal care. Altering litter gender composition affects maternal behavior and DNA methylation levels of another gene in hippocampus and nucleus accumbens (NAc). We now test if DNA methylation levels of Nr3c1, Egr1, and Bdnf differ by litter composition or sex. Rats from mixed- or single-sex litters were tested for anxiety and fear on postnatal day 35. Brain tissues were collected and analyzed using direct sequencing methods. Females showed hypermethylation of Nr3c1 of hippocampal DNA and litter composition modified sex effects on methylation of Egr1 in NAc. Few differences were seen for Bdnf. LGC modified some sex differences in behavior.

  14. Sex differences in body composition, fat storage, and gene expression profile in Caenorhabditis elegans in response to dietary restriction.

    PubMed

    Miersch, Claudia; Döring, Frank

    2013-07-02

    The metabolic and health-promoting effects of dietary restriction (DR) have been extensively studied in several species. The response to DR with respect to sex is essentially unknown. To address this question, we used the model organism Caenorhabditis elegans to analyze body composition and gene expression in males and hermaphrodites in response to DR. Unexpectedly, DR increased the fat-to-fat-free mass ratio and enlarged lipid droplets in both sexes to a similar extent. These effects were linked to a downregulation of the lipase-like 5 (lipl-5) gene in both sexes at two developmental stages. By contrast, the reductions in body size, protein content, and total RNA content in response to DR were more pronounced in hermaphrodites than in males. Functional enrichment analysis of gene expression data showed a DR-induced downregulation of several embryogenesis-associated genes concomitant with an ongoing expression of sperm-associated genes in hermaphrodites. In conclusion, DR increases fat stores in both sexes of C. elegans in the form of large and possibly lipolysis-resistant lipid droplets and markedly alters the reproductive program in hermaphrodites but not in males.

  15. Pathway-based analysis of GWAs data identifies association of sex determination genes with susceptibility to testicular germ cell tumors.

    PubMed

    Koster, Roelof; Mitra, Nandita; D'Andrea, Kurt; Vardhanabhuti, Saran; Chung, Charles C; Wang, Zhaoming; Loren Erickson, R; Vaughn, David J; Litchfield, Kevin; Rahman, Nazneen; Greene, Mark H; McGlynn, Katherine A; Turnbull, Clare; Chanock, Stephen J; Nathanson, Katherine L; Kanetsky, Peter A

    2014-11-15

    Genome-wide association (GWA) studies of testicular germ cell tumor (TGCT) have identified 18 susceptibility loci, some containing genes encoding proteins important in male germ cell development. Deletions of one of these genes, DMRT1, lead to male-to-female sex reversal and are associated with development of gonadoblastoma. To further explore genetic association with TGCT, we undertook a pathway-based analysis of SNP marker associations in the Penn GWAs (349 TGCT cases and 919 controls). We analyzed a custom-built sex determination gene set consisting of 32 genes using three different methods of pathway-based analysis. The sex determination gene set ranked highly compared with canonical gene sets, and it was associated with TGCT (FDRG = 2.28 × 10(-5), FDRM = 0.014 and FDRI = 0.008 for Gene Set Analysis-SNP (GSA-SNP), Meta-Analysis Gene Set Enrichment of Variant Associations (MAGENTA) and Improved Gene Set Enrichment Analysis for Genome-wide Association Study (i-GSEA4GWAS) analysis, respectively). The association remained after removal of DMRT1 from the gene set (FDRG = 0.0002, FDRM = 0.055 and FDRI = 0.009). Using data from the NCI GWA scan (582 TGCT cases and 1056 controls) and UK scan (986 TGCT cases and 4946 controls), we replicated these findings (NCI: FDRG = 0.006, FDRM = 0.014, FDRI = 0.033, and UK: FDRG = 1.04 × 10(-6), FDRM = 0.016, FDRI = 0.025). After removal of DMRT1 from the gene set, the sex determination gene set remains associated with TGCT in the NCI (FDRG = 0.039, FDRM = 0.050 and FDRI = 0.055) and UK scans (FDRG = 3.00 × 10(-5), FDRM = 0.056 and FDRI = 0.044). With the exception of DMRT1, genes in the sex determination gene set have not previously been identified as TGCT susceptibility loci in these GWA scans, demonstrating the complementary nature of a pathway-based approach for genome-wide analysis of TGCT.

  16. Gain-of-function mutations of fem-3, a sex-determination gene in Caenorhabditis elegans

    SciTech Connect

    Barton, M.K.; Schedl, T.B.; Kimble, J.

    1987-01-01

    The authors have isolated nine gain-of-function (gf) alleles of the sex-determination gene fem-3 as suppressors of feminizing mutations in fem-1 and fem-2. The wild type fem-3 gene is needed for spermatogenesis in XX self-fertilizing hermaphrodites and for male development in both soma and germ line of XO animals. Loss-of-function alleles of fem-3 transform XX and XO animals into females (spermless hermaphrodites). In contrast, fem-3 (gf) alleles masculinize only one tissue, the hermaphrodite germ line. Thus, XX fem-3 (gf) mutant animals have a normal hermaphrodite soma, but the germ line produces a vast excess of sperm and no oocytes. All nine fem-3 (gf) alleles are temperature sensitive. The temperature-sensitive period is from late L4 to early adult, a period just preceding the first signs of oogenesis. The finding of gain-of-function alleles which confer a phenotype opposite to that of loss-of-function alleles supports the idea that fem-3 plays a critical role in germ-line sex determination. Furthermore, the germ-line specificity of the fem-3 (gf) mutant phenotype and the late temperature-sensitive period suggest that, in the wild-type XX hermaphrodite, fem-3 is negatively regulated so that the hermaphrodite stops making sperm and starts making oocytes. Temperature shift experiments also show that, in the germ line, sexual commitment appears to be a continuing process. Spermatogenesis can resume even after oogenesis has begun, and oogenesis can be initiated much later than normal.

  17. Gain-of-Function Mutations of fem-3, a Sex-Determination Gene in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Barton, M. Kathryn; Schedl, Timothy B.; Kimble, Judith

    1987-01-01

    We have isolated nine gain-of-function (gf) alleles of the sex-determination gene fem-3 as suppressors of feminizing mutations in fem-1 and fem-2. The wild-type fem-3 gene is needed for spermatogenesis in XX self-fertilizing hermaphrodites and for male development in both soma and germ line of XO animals. Loss-of-function alleles of fem-3 transform XX and XO animals into females (spermless hermaphrodites). In contrast, fem-3(gf) alleles masculinize only one tissue, the hermaphrodite germ line. Thus, XX fem-3(gf) mutant animals have a normal hermaphrodite soma, but the germ line produces a vast excess of sperm and no oocytes. All nine fem-3(gf) alleles are temperature sensitive. The temperature-sensitive period is from late L4 to early adult, a period just preceding the first signs of oogenesis. The finding of gain-of-function alleles which confer a phenotype opposite to that of loss-of-function alleles supports the idea that fem-3 plays a critical role in germ-line sex determination. Furthermore, the germ-line specificity of the fem-3( gf) mutant phenotype and the late temperature-sensitive period suggest that, in the wild-type XX hermaphrodite, fem-3 is negatively regulated so that the hermaphrodite stops making sperm and starts making oocytes. Temperature shift experiments also show that, in the germ line, sexual commitment appears to be a continuing process. Spermatogenesis can resume even after oogenesis has begun, and oogenesis can be initiated much later than normal. PMID:3557107

  18. Sex bias in copy number variation of olfactory receptor gene family depends on ethnicity

    PubMed Central

    Shadravan, Farideh

    2013-01-01

    Gender plays a pivotal role in the human genetic identity and is also manifested in many genetic disorders particularly mental retardation. In this study its effect on copy number variation (CNV), known to cause genetic disorders was explored. As the olfactory receptor (OR) repertoire comprises the largest human gene family, it was selected for this study, which was carried out within and between three populations, derived from 150 individuals from the 1000 Genome Project. Analysis of 3872 CNVs detected among 791 OR loci, in which 307 loci showed CNV, revealed the following novel findings: Sex bias in CNV was significantly more prevalent in uncommon than common CNV variants of OR pseudogenes, in which the male genome showed more CNVs; and in one-copy number loss compared to complete deletion of OR pseudogenes; both findings implying a more recent evolutionary role for gender. Sex bias in copy number gain was also detected. Another novel finding was that the observed sex bias was largely dependent on ethnicity and was in general absent in East Asians. Using a CNV public database for sick children (International Standard Cytogenomic Array Consortium) the application of these findings for improving clinical molecular diagnostics is discussed by showing an example of sex bias in CNV among kids with autism. Additional clinical relevance is discussed, as the most polymorphic CNV-enriched OR cluster in the human genome, located on chr 15q11.2, is found near the Prader–Willi syndrome/Angelman syndrome bi-directionally imprinted region associated with two well-known mental retardation syndromes. As olfaction represents the primitive cognition in most mammals, arguably in competition with the development of a larger brain, the extensive retention of OR pseudogenes in females of this study, might point to a parent-of-origin indirect regulatory role for OR pseudogenes in the embryonic development of human brain. Thus any perturbation in the temporal regulation of olfactory

  19. Homeosis and beyond. What is the function of the Hox genes?

    PubMed

    Deutsch, Jean S

    2010-01-01

    What is the function of the Hox genes? At first glance, it is a curious question. Indeed, the answer seems so obvious that several authors have spoken of 'the Hox function' about some of the Hox genes, namely Hox3/zen and Hox6/ftz that seem to have lost it during the evolution of Arthropods. What these authors meant is that these genes have lost their 'homeotic' function. Indeed, 'homeotic' refers to a functional property that is so often associated with the Hox genes. However, the word 'Hox' should not be used to refer to a function, but to a group of genes. The above examples of Hox3/zen (see Schmitt-Ott's chapter, this book) and Hox6/ftz show that the homeotic function may be not so tightly linked to the Hox genes. Reversely, many genes, not belonging to the Hox group, do present a homeotic function. In the present chapter, I will first give a definition of the Hox genes. I will then ask what is the 'function' of a gene, examining its various meanings at different levels of biological organization. I will review and revisit the relation between the Hox genes and homeosis. I will suggest that their morphological homeotic function has been secondarily derived during the evolution of the Bilateria.

  20. A genetic method for sex identification of raccoons (Procyon lotor) with using the ZFX and ZFY genes.

    PubMed

    Okuyama, Minami W; Shimozuru, Michito; Tsubota, Toshio

    2014-05-01

    A genetic method for sex determination in raccoons was developed based on nucleotide differences of the zinc finger protein genes ZFX and ZFY. Four novel internal primers specific for ZFX or ZFY were designed. PCR amplification using two primer sets followed by agarose gel electrophoresis enabled sex determination. 141-bp and 447-bp bands were in both sex, and 346-bp band was specific only in male with primer set I. 345-bp and 447-bp bands were in both sex, and 141-bp band was specific only in male with primer set II, which could distinguish raccoon's electrophoresis pattern from three native carnivores in Hokkaido. This method will be useful for conservation genetics studies or biological analyses of raccoons.

  1. A quantitative real-time PCR method using an X-linked gene for sex typing in pigs.

    PubMed

    Ballester, Maria; Castelló, Anna; Ramayo-Caldas, Yuliaxis; Folch, Josep M

    2013-06-01

    At present, a wide range of molecular sex-typing protocols in wild and domestic animals are available. In pigs, most of these methods are based on PCR amplification of X-Y homologous genes followed by gel electrophoresis which is time-consuming and in some cases expensive. In this paper, we describe, for the first time, a SYBR green-based quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) assay using an X-linked gene, the glycoprotein M6B, for genetic sexing of pigs. Taking into account the differences in the glycoprotein M6B gene copy number between genders, we determine the correct sex of 54 pig samples from either diaphragm or hair follicle from different breeds using the 2(-ΔΔCT) method for relative quantification. Our qPCR assay represents a quick, inexpensive, and reliable tool for sex determination in pigs. This new protocol could be easily adapted to other species in which the sex determination was required.

  2. The Fruitless gene in Nasonia displays complex sex-specific splicing and contains new zinc finger domains.

    PubMed

    Bertossa, Rinaldo C; van de Zande, Louis; Beukeboom, Leo W

    2009-07-01

    The transcription factor Fruitless exerts a broad range of functions during Drosophila development, the most apparent of which is the determination of sexual behavior in males. Although fruitless sequences are found in other insect orders, little is known about fruitless structure and function outside Diptera. We have performed a thorough analysis of fruitless transcripts in the haplo-diploid wasp Nasonia vitripennis and found both sex-specific and non-sex-specific transcripts similar to those found in Drosophila. In Nasonia, however, a novel, large fruitless transcript is present in females only. Putative binding sites for sex-specific splicing factors found in Nasonia fruitless and doublesex as well as Apis mellifera doublesex transcripts were sufficient to identify a corresponding female-specific fruitless exon in A. mellifera, suggesting that similar factors in both hymenopteran species could be responsible for sex-specific splicing of both genes. Furthermore, new C(2)H(2) zinc finger domains found in Nasonia fruitless transcripts were also identified in the fruitless locus of major holometabolous insect species but not in drosophilids. Conservation of important domains and sex-specific splicing in Diptera and Hymenoptera support the hypothesis that fruitless is an ancient gene and has conserved functions in insects. Considerable divergences in other parts of the gene are expected to underlie species-specific differences and may help to explain diversity observed in insect sexual behaviors.

  3. Improved molecular assay for sex identification of the endangered crested Ibis (Nipponia nippon) based on the CHD1 gene and a sex-linked microsatellite locus.

    PubMed

    He, Xue-Lian; Qing, Bao-Ping; Han, Jian-Lin; Ding, Chang-Qing

    2013-09-01

    Sex Identification of monomorphic birds, especially endangered avian species, is essential for ecological study and biodiversity conservation. In this study, two popular primer sets of 2550F/2718R and P2/P8, which were designed to amplify different fragments of chromodomain-helicase-DNA binding protein 1 (CHD1) genes mapped on both Z and W chromosomes in birds, were used to identify for the first time the sex of individuals of the endangered species crested ibis (Nipponia nippon) in a large number of samples. An improved primer set of 2467F/2530R was re-designed to be specific to crested ibis following their conserved sequences derived from the 2550F/2718R primers. PCR products of the new primers were conveniently visualized with two bands of 552 base pairs (bp) and 358 bp for females, but a single band of 552 bp for males in routine 1.8% agarose gel. Similarly, the P2/P8 primer set amplified two fragments of 398 bp and 381 bp from females but one fragment of 398 bp from males; however, a high resolution involving 10% Polyacrylamide gel had to be employed to resolve the 17 bp insertions/deletions (in/dels) present between the two amplicons in females. In addition, a microsatellite locus NnNF05 was validated to be sex-linked and shown to be effective in the sexing of crested ibis, supporting its utility in non-invasive sampling. This study provides a rapid, convenient, and reliable molecular assay for improving sex identification in the monomorphic and monogamous crested ibis, and thus facilitates the selection of breeding pairs in captive programs and reintroduction initiatives.

  4. A Functional and Structural Analysis of the Sex Combs Reduced Locus of Drosophila Melanogaster

    PubMed Central

    Pattatucci, A. M.; Otteson, D. C.; Kaufman, T. C.

    1991-01-01

    We have undertaken a developmental genetic analysis of the homeotic gene Sex combs reduced (Scr) of Drosophila melanogaster by examining embryonic and adult phenotypes of mutations affecting Scr gene function. Molecular mapping of Scr breakpoint lesions has defined a segment of >70 kb of DNA necessary for proper Scr gene function. This region is split by the fushi tarazu (ftz) gene, with lesions affecting embryonic Scr function molecularly mapping to the region proximal (5') to ftz and those exhibiting polyphasic semilethality predominantly mapping distal (3') to ftz. Gain-of-function mutations are associated with genomic rearrangements and map throughout the Scr locus. Our analysis has revealed that the Scr locus encompasses genetic elements that are responsible for functions in both the embryonic and larval to adult periods of development. From these studies, we conclude that Scr is a complex genetic locus with an extensive regulatory region that directs functions required for normal head and thoracic development in both the embryo and the adult and that the regulation of Scr during these two periods is distinct. PMID:1743486

  5. The role of the transformer gene in sex determination and reproduction in the tephritid fruit fly, Bactrocera dorsalis (Hendel).

    PubMed

    Peng, Wei; Zheng, Wenping; Handler, Alfred M; Zhang, Hongyu

    2015-12-01

    Transformer (tra) is a switch gene in the somatic sex-determination hierarchy that regulates sexual dimorphism based on RNA splicing in many insects. In tephritids, a Y-linked male determining gene (M) controls sex in the sex-determination pathway. Here, homologues of Drosophila tra and transformer-2 (tra-2) genes were isolated and characterized in Bactrocera dorsalis (Hendel), one of the most destructive agricultural insect pests in many Asian countries. Two male-specific and one female-specific isoforms of B. dorsalis transformer (Bdtra) were identified. The presence of multiple TRA/TRA-2 binding sites in Bdtra suggests that the TRA/TRA-2 proteins are splicing regulators promoting and maintaining, epigenetically, female sex determination by a tra positive feedback loop in XX individuals during development. The expression patterns of female-specific Bdtra transcripts during early embryogenesis shows that a peak appears at 15 h after egg laying. Using dsRNA to knock-down Bdtra expression in the embryo and adult stages, we showed that sexual formation is determined early in the embryo stage and that parental RNAi does not lead to the production of all male progeny as in Tribolium castaneum. RNAi results from adult abdominal dsRNA injections show that Bdtra has a positive influence on female yolk protein gene (Bdyp1) expression and fecundity.

  6. Y-STR diversity and sex-biased gene flow among Caribbean populations.

    PubMed

    Simms, Tanya M; Wright, Marisil R; Martinez, Emanuel; Regueiro, Maria; McCartney, Quinn; Herrera, Rene J

    2013-03-01

    In the present study, we report, for the first time, the allele and haplotype frequencies of 17 Y-STR (Y-filer) loci in the populations of Haiti, Jamaica and the Bahamas (Abaco, Eleuthera, Exuma, Grand Bahama, Long Island and New Providence). This investigation was undertaken to assess the paternal genetic structure of the abovementioned Caribbean islands. A total of 607 different haplotypes were identified among the 691 males examined, of which 537 (88.5%) were unique. Haplotype diversities (HD) ranged from 0.989 in Long Island to 1.000 in Grand Bahama, with limited haplotype sharing observed among these Caribbean collections. Discriminatory capacity (DC) values were also high, ranging from 79.1% to 100% in Long Island and Grand Bahama, respectively, illustrating the capacity of this set of markers to differentiate between patrilineal related individuals within each population. Phylogenetic comparison of the Bahamian, Haitian and Jamaican groups with available African, European, East Asian and Native American populations reveals strong genetic ties with the continental African collections, a finding that corroborates our earlier work using autosomal STR and Y-chromosome binary markers. In addition, various degrees of sex-biased gene flow exhibiting disproportionately higher European paternal (as compared to autosomal) influences were detected in all Caribbean islands genotyped except for Abaco and Eleuthera. We attribute the presence or absence of asymmetric gene flow to unique, island specific demographic events and family structures.

  7. A gene-based evolutionary explanation for the association between criminal involvement and number of sex partners.

    PubMed

    Beaver, Kevin M; Wright, John Paul; Walsh, Anthony

    2008-01-01

    Empirical research has revealed a positive relationship between number of sex partners and involvement in antisocial behaviors. Most attempts to explain this association have taken an evolutionary perspective and argued that the same traits (e.g., impulsiveness, shortsightedness, and aggressiveness) that are related to a large number of sex partners are also related to criminal involvement. However, there is also reason to believe that the covariation between sex partners and crime behaviors can be partially explained by a common genetic pathway, where genes that are related to sex partners are also related to antisocial conduct. We test this possibility by using data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health). Specifically, we examine whether variants of the dopamine transporter gene (DAT1) are associated with number of sexual partners and with adult criminal behavior. The results of our analyses reveal two broad findings. First, and in line with prior research, we find that there is a strong positive association between sex partners and antisocial behavior. Second, DAT1 explains variation in both number of sexual partners and in criminal conduct for males. We speak to the implications of our findings.

  8. Coalescent Times and Patterns of Genetic Diversity in Species with Facultative Sex: Effects of Gene Conversion, Population Structure, and Heterogeneity

    PubMed Central

    Hartfield, Matthew; Wright, Stephen I.; Agrawal, Aneil F.

    2016-01-01

    Many diploid organisms undergo facultative sexual reproduction. However, little is currently known concerning the distribution of neutral genetic variation among facultative sexual organisms except in very simple cases. Understanding this distribution is important when making inferences about rates of sexual reproduction, effective population size, and demographic history. Here we extend coalescent theory in diploids with facultative sex to consider gene conversion, selfing, population subdivision, and temporal and spatial heterogeneity in rates of sex. In addition to analytical results for two-sample coalescent times, we outline a coalescent algorithm that accommodates the complexities arising from partial sex; this algorithm can be used to generate multisample coalescent distributions. A key result is that when sex is rare, gene conversion becomes a significant force in reducing diversity within individuals. This can reduce genomic signatures of infrequent sex (i.e., elevated within-individual allelic sequence divergence) or entirely reverse the predicted patterns. These models offer improved methods for assessing null patterns of molecular variation in facultative sexual organisms. PMID:26584902

  9. Coalescent Times and Patterns of Genetic Diversity in Species with Facultative Sex: Effects of Gene Conversion, Population Structure, and Heterogeneity.

    PubMed

    Hartfield, Matthew; Wright, Stephen I; Agrawal, Aneil F

    2016-01-01

    Many diploid organisms undergo facultative sexual reproduction. However, little is currently known concerning the distribution of neutral genetic variation among facultative sexual organisms except in very simple cases. Understanding this distribution is important when making inferences about rates of sexual reproduction, effective population size, and demographic history. Here we extend coalescent theory in diploids with facultative sex to consider gene conversion, selfing, population subdivision, and temporal and spatial heterogeneity in rates of sex. In addition to analytical results for two-sample coalescent times, we outline a coalescent algorithm that accommodates the complexities arising from partial sex; this algorithm can be used to generate multisample coalescent distributions. A key result is that when sex is rare, gene conversion becomes a significant force in reducing diversity within individuals. This can reduce genomic signatures of infrequent sex (i.e., elevated within-individual allelic sequence divergence) or entirely reverse the predicted patterns. These models offer improved methods for assessing null patterns of molecular variation in facultative sexual organisms.

  10. Sex determination of early medieval individuals through nested PCR using a new primer set in the SRY gene.

    PubMed

    Luptáková, Lenka; Bábelová, Andrea; Omelka, Radoslav; Kolena, Branislav; Vondráková, Mária; Bauerová, Mária

    2011-04-15

    One of the first questions asked about excavated human skeletal remains is the sex. As the morphological sex determination is complicated in cases involving fragmentary bones and in skeletons from infants and children, the development of DNA-based techniques has led to improvements in sex determination. This study is focused on sex determination from ancient DNA obtained from 25 skeletons found in Middle Aged burials in western Slovakia. We performed separate amplifications of DXZ4 repetitive satellite sequences on the X chromosome, and SRY gene - testis determined factor on the Y chromosome, using nested PCR. Our results showed that DXZ4 was amplified in the case of 23 individuals. With newly designed internal and external primer sets for SRY detection with internal PCR products in lengths of 102 bp and 85 bp we succeeded in detecting the SRY locus in 9 samples. Finally, the gender was determined in 23 individuals (14 females and 9 males). In 20 samples, the gender was determined by morphological and molecular methods. Sex determination of 17 samples using nested PCR matched the morphological one, providing evidence of the authenticity and ancient origin of the PCR amplifications. The DXZ4/SRY nested PCR method represents a useful technique in sex determination of medieval human remains and it is a critical addition to anthropological studies.

  11. Floral visitation and reproductive traits of Stamenoid petals, a naturally occurring floral homeotic variant of Capsella bursa-pastoris (Brassicaceae).

    PubMed

    Ziermann, Janine; Ritz, Markus S; Hameister, Steffen; Abel, Christian; Hoffmann, Matthias H; Neuffer, Barbara; Theissen, Günter

    2009-11-01

    Homeotic changes played a considerable role during the evolution of flowers, but how floral homeotic mutants initially survive in nature has remained enigmatic. To better understand the evolutionary potential of floral homeotic mutants, we established as a model system Stamenoid petals (Spe), a natural variant of Capsella bursa-pastoris (Brassicaceae). In the flowers of Spe plants, petals are transformed into stamens, whereas all other floral organs are unaffected. In contrast with most other homeotic mutants, the Spe variant occurs in relatively stable populations in the wild. In order to determine how the profound change in floral architecture influences plant performance in the wild, we performed common garden experiments running over 3 years. Here, we show that Spe and wild-type plants attract the same assemblage of floral visitors: mainly hoverflies, wild bees and thrips. However, floral visitation is about twice as frequent in wild-type plants as in Spe plants. Nevertheless, the numbers of seeds per fruit were about the same in both variants. Wild-type plants produced more flowers, fruits and seeds per plant than Spe plants, whereas the germination capacity of Spe seeds was higher than that of the wild-type. Determination of volatile composition revealed monoterpenes and 3,4-dimethylbenzaldehyde, which were detected only in wild-type flowers, presumably because they are produced only by petals. Our data indicate that the similar fitness of Spe and wild-type C. bursa-pastoris in the field results from complex compensation between plant architecture and germination capacity. In contrast, flower structure and floral visitation are only of minor importance, possibly because C. bursa-pastoris is mainly self-pollinating.

  12. Y-autosome translocation interferes with meiotic sex inactivation and expression of autosomal genes: a case study in the pig.

    PubMed

    Barasc, H; Mary, N; Letron, R; Calgaro, A; Dudez, A M; Bonnet, N; Lahbib-Mansais, Y; Yerle, M; Ducos, A; Pinton, A

    2012-01-01

    Y-autosome translocations are rare in humans and pigs. In both species, these rearrangements can be responsible for meiotic arrest and subsequent infertility. Chromosome pairing abnormalities on the SSCX, SSCY and SSC1 chromatin domains were identified by analyzing pachytene spermatocytes from a boar carrying a (Y;1) translocation by immunolocalization of specific meiotic protein combined with FISH. Disturbance of the meiotic sex chromosome inactivation (MSCI) was observed by Cot-RNA-FISH and analysis of ZFY gene expression by sequential RNA- and DNA-FISH on spermatocytes. We hypothesized that the meiotic arrest observed in this boar might be due to the silencing of critical autosomal genes and/or the reactivation of some sex chromosome genes.

  13. Sexual Dimorphism of Body Size Is Controlled by Dosage of the X-Chromosomal Gene Myc and by the Sex-Determining Gene tra in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Mathews, Kristina Wehr; Cavegn, Margrith; Zwicky, Monica

    2017-01-01

    Drosophila females are larger than males. In this article, we describe how X-chromosome dosage drives sexual dimorphism of body size through two means: first, through unbalanced expression of a key X-linked growth-regulating gene, and second, through female-specific activation of the sex-determination pathway. X-chromosome dosage determines phenotypic sex by regulating the genes of the sex-determining pathway. In the presence of two sets of X-chromosome signal elements (XSEs), Sex-lethal (Sxl) is activated in female (XX) but not male (XY) animals. Sxl activates transformer (tra), a gene that encodes a splicing factor essential for female-specific development. It has previously been shown that null mutations in the tra gene result in only a partial reduction of body size of XX animals, which shows that other factors must contribute to size determination. We tested whether X dosage directly affects animal size by analyzing males with duplications of X-chromosomal segments. Upon tiling across the X chromosome, we found four duplications that increase male size by >9%. Within these, we identified several genes that promote growth as a result of duplication. Only one of these, Myc, was found not to be dosage compensated. Together, our results indicate that both Myc dosage and tra expression play crucial roles in determining sex-specific size in Drosophila larvae and adult tissue. Since Myc also acts as an XSE that contributes to tra activation in early development, a double dose of Myc in females serves at least twice in development to promote sexual size dimorphism. PMID:28064166

  14. Sexual Dimorphism of Body Size Is Controlled by Dosage of the X-Chromosomal Gene Myc and by the Sex-Determining Gene tra in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Wehr Mathews, Kristina; Cavegn, Margrith; Zwicky, Monica

    2017-01-06

    Drosophila females are larger than males. In this paper, we describe how X chromosome dosage drives sexual dimorphism of body size through two means: first, through unbalanced expression of a key X-linked growth regulating gene and second, through female-specific activation of the sex-determination pathway. X-chromosome dosage determines phenotypic sex by regulating the genes of the sex-determining pathway. In the presence of two sets of X-chromosome signal elements (XSEs), Sex-lethal (Sxl) is activated in female (XX) but not male (XY) animals. Sxl activates transformer (tra), a gene that encodes a splicing factor essential for female-specific development. It has previously been shown that null mutations in the tra gene result in only a partial reduction of body size of XX animals, which shows that other factors must contribute to size determination. We tested whether X dosage directly affects animal size by analyzing males with duplications of X chromosomal segments. Upon tiling across the X chromosome, we found four duplications that increase male size by over 9%. Within these, we identified several genes that promote growth as a result of duplication. Only one of these, Myc, was found not to be dosage compensated. Together, our results indicate that both Myc dosage and tra expression play crucial roles in determining sex-specific size in Drosophila larvae and adult tissue. Since Myc also acts as an XSE that contributes to tra activation in early, development, a double dose of Myc in females serves at least twice in development to promote sexual size dimorphism.

  15. Molecular Characterization and Sex Distribution of Chemosensory Receptor Gene Family Based on Transcriptome Analysis of Scaeva pyrastri

    PubMed Central

    Li, Xiao-Ming; Zhu, Xiu-Yun; He, Peng; Xu, Lu; Sun, Liang; Chen, Li; Wang, Zhi-Qiang; Deng, Dao-Gui

    2016-01-01

    Chemosensory receptors play key roles in insect behavior. Thus, genes encoding these receptors have great potential for use in integrated pest management. The hover fly Scaeva pyrastri (L.) is an important pollinating insect and a natural enemy of aphids, mainly distributed in the Palearctic and Nearctic regions. However, a systematic identification of their chemosensory receptor genes in the antennae has not been reported. In the present study, we assembled the antennal transcriptome of S. pyrastri by using Illumina sequencing technology. Analysis of the transcriptome data identified 60 candidate chemosensory genes, including 38 for odorant receptors (ORs), 16 for ionotropic receptors (IRs), and 6 for gustatory receptors (GRs). The numbers are similar to those of other Diptera species, suggesting that we were able to successfully identify S. pyrastri chemosensory genes. We analyzed the expression patterns of all genes by using reverse transcriptase PCR (RT-PCR), and found that some genes exhibited sex-biased or sex-specific expression. These candidate chemosensory genes and their tissue expression profiles provide information for further studies aimed at fully understanding the molecular basis behind chemoreception-related behaviors in S. pyrastri. PMID:27171401

  16. Fog-2, a Germ-Line-Specific Sex Determination Gene Required for Hermaphrodite Spermatogenesis in Caenorhabditis Elegans

    PubMed Central

    Schedl, T.; Kimble, J.

    1988-01-01

    This paper describes the isolation and characterization of 16 mutations in the germ-line sex determination gene fog-2 (fog for feminization of the germ line). In the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans there are normally two sexes, self-fertilizing hermaphrodites (XX) and males (XO). Wild-type XX animals are hermaphrodite in the germ line (spermatogenesis followed by oogenesis), and female in the soma. fog-2 loss-of-function mutations transform XX animals into females while XO animals are unaffected. Thus, wild-type fog-2 is necessary for spermatogenesis in hermaphrodites but not males. The fem genes and fog-1 are each essential for specification of spermatogenesis in both XX and XO animals. fog-2 acts as a positive regulator of the fem genes and fog-1. The tra-2 and tra-3 genes act as negative regulators of the fem genes and fog-1 to allow oogenesis. Two models are discussed for how fog-2 might positively regulate the fem genes and fog-1 to permit spermatogenesis; fog-2 may act as a negative regulator of tra-2 and tra-3, or fog-2 may act positively on the fem genes and fog-1 rendering them insensitive to the negative action of tra-2 and tra-3. PMID:3396865

  17. The master switch gene Sex-lethal promotes female development by negatively regulating the N signaling pathway

    PubMed Central

    Penn, Jill K M; Schedl, Paul

    2011-01-01

    Summary Notch (N) signaling is used for cell fate determination in many different developmental contexts. Here we show that the master control gene for sex determination in Drosophila melanogaster, Sex-lethal (Sxl), negatively regulates the N signaling pathway in females. In genetic assays, reducing Sxl activity suppresses the phenotypic effects of N mutations while increasing Sxl activity enhances the effects. Sxl appears to negatively regulate the pathway by reducing N protein accumulation and higher levels of N are found in Sxl−clones than in adjacent wild type cells. The inhibition of N expression does not depend on the known downstream targets of Sxl; however we find that Sxl protein can bind to N mRNAs. Finally our results indicate that downregulation of the N pathway by Sxl contributes to sex specific differences in morphology and suggest that it may also play an important role in follicle cell specification during oogenesis. PMID:17276344

  18. The Caenorhabditis elegans sex determining gene fem-3 is regulated post-transcriptionally.

    PubMed Central

    Ahringer, J; Rosenquist, T A; Lawson, D N; Kimble, J

    1992-01-01

    The fem-3 gene of Caenorhabditis elegans is required for male development. Both maternal and zygotic fem-3 activities are required for spermatogenesis in the XX hermaphrodite germline and for male development in somatic and germline tissues XO (male) animals. Here we show that fem-3 RNA is contributed to embryos as a maternal product and that this RNA is degraded early in embryonic development. The poly(A) tail of embryonic fem-3 RNA is substantially longer than that of adult hermaphrodites which indicates that poly(A) tail lengthening probably occurs at or soon after fertilization. During subsequent development, fem-3 poly(A) tails shorten. The amount of fem-3 RNA in XX and XO embryos is equivalent, suggesting sex-specific regulation of maternal fem-3 activity occurs post-transcriptionally. The sequence of fem-3 predicts an open reading frame that could encode a soluble protein; putative fem-3 null mutants truncate this open reading frame. We discuss the implications of these results for the regulation and function of fem-3. Images PMID:1376249

  19. Expression profile of the sex determination gene doublesex in a gynandromorph of bumblebee, Bombus ignitus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ugajin, Atsushi; Matsuo, Koshiro; Kubo, Ryohei; Sasaki, Tetsuhiko; Ono, Masato

    2016-04-01

    Gynandromorphy that has both male and female features is known in many insect orders, including Hymenoptera. In most cases, however, only external morphology and behavioral aspects have been studied. We found a gynandromorph of bumblebee, Bombus ignitus, that showed almost bilateral distribution of external sexual traits, with male characters observed on the left side and female characters on the right side. This individual never exhibited sexual behavior toward new queens. The dissection of the head part showed that it had bilaterally dimorphic labial glands, only the left of which was well developed and synthesized male-specific pheromone components. In contrast, the gynandromorph possessed an ovipositor and a pair of ovaries in the abdominal part, suggesting that it had a uniformly female reproductive system. Furthermore, we characterized several internal organs of the gynandromorph by a molecular biological approach. The expression analyses of a sex determination gene, doublesex, in the brain, the fat bodies, the hindgut, and the ovaries of the gynandromorph revealed a male-type expression pattern exclusively in the left brain hemisphere and consistent female-type expression in other tissues. These findings clearly indicate the sexual discordance between external traits and internal organs in the gynandromorph. The results of genetic analyses using microsatellite markers suggested that this individual consisted of both genetically male- and female-type tissues.

  20. Sex, Drugs, and Rock ‘N’ Roll: Hypothesizing Common Mesolimbic Activation as a Function of Reward Gene Polymorphisms

    PubMed Central

    Blum, Kenneth; Werner, Tonia; Carnes, Stefanie; Carnes, Patrick; Bowirrat, Abdalla; Giordano, John; Marlene-Oscar-Berman; Gold, Mark

    2014-01-01

    The nucleus accumbens, a site within the ventral striatum, plays a prominent role in mediating the reinforcing effects of drugs of abuse, food, sex, and other addictions. Indeed, it is generally believed that this structure mandates motivated behaviors such as eating, drinking, and sexual activity, which are elicited by natural rewards and other strong incentive stimuli. This article focuses on sex addiction, but we hypothesize that there is a common underlying mechanism of action for the powerful effects that all addictions have on human motivation. That is, biological drives may have common molecular genetic antecedents, which if impaired, lead to aberrant behaviors. Based on abundant scientific support, we further hypothesize that dopaminergic genes, and possibly other candidate neurotransmitter-related gene polymorphisms, affect both hedonic and anhedonic behavioral outcomes. Genotyping studies already have linked gene polymorphic associations with alcohol and drug addictions and obesity, and we anticipate that future genotyping studies of sex addicts will provide evidence for polymorphic associations with specific clustering of sexual typologies based on clinical instrument assessments. We recommend that scientists and clinicians embark on research coupling the use of neuroimaging tools with dopaminergic agonistic agents to target specific gene polymorphisms systematically for normalizing hyper- or hypo-sexual behaviors. PMID:22641964

  1. The transformer gene of Ceratitis capitata: a paradigm for a conserved epigenetic master regulator of sex determination in insects.

    PubMed

    Saccone, G; Salvemini, M; Polito, L C

    2011-01-01

    The transformer gene in Ceratitis capitata (Cctra(ep)) is the founding member of a family of related SR genes that appear to act as the master epigenetic switch in sex determination in insects. A functional protein seems to be produced only in individuals with a female XX karyotype where it is required to maintain the productive mode of expression through a positive feedback loop and to direct female development by instructing the downstream target genes accordingly. When zygotic activation of this loop is prevented, male development follows. Recently, tra(ep) orthologues were isolated in more distantly related dipteran species including Musca domestica, Glossina morsitans and Lucilia cuprina and in the Hymenopterans Apis mellifera and Nasonia vitripennis. All of these tra(ep) orthologues seem to act as binary switches that govern all aspects of sexual development. Transient silencing leads to complete masculinization of individuals with a female karyotype. Reciprocally, in some systems it has been shown that transient expression of the functional TRA product is sufficient to transactivate the endogenous gene and implement female development in individuals with a male karyotype. Hence, a mechanism based on tra(ep) epigenetic autoregulation seems to represent a common and presumably ancestral single principle of sex determination in Insecta. The results of these studies will not only be important for understanding divergent evolution of basic developmental processes but also for designing new strategies to improve genetic sexing in different insect species of economical or medical importance.

  2. Gonadal transcriptomic analysis of yellow catfish (Pelteobagrus fulvidraco): identification of sex-related genes and genetic markers.

    PubMed

    Lu, Jianguo; Luan, Peixian; Zhang, Xiaofeng; Xue, Shuqun; Peng, Lina; Mahbooband, Shahid; Sun, Xiaowen

    2014-11-01

    Yellow catfish (Pelteobagrus fulvidraco) has been recognized as a vital freshwater aquaculture species in East and Southeast Asia. In addition to its commercial interest, it is also attracted much attention because of its value in studying sex-determination mechanisms. A comprehensive gonadal transcriptome analysis is believed to provide a resource for genome annotation, candidate gene identification, and molecular marker development. Herein, we performed a de novo assembly of yellow catfish gonad transcriptome by high-throughput Illumina sequencing. A total of 82,123 contigs were obtained, ranging from 351 to 21,268 bp, and N50 of 2,329 bp. Unigenes of 21,869 in total were identified. Of these, 229 and 1,188 genes were found to be specifically expressed in XY gonad tissue for 1 yr and 2 yr old yellow catfish, respectively; correspondingly, 51 and 40 genes were identified in XX gonad tissue at those two stages. Gene ontology and KEGG analysis were conducted and classified all contigs into different categories. A large number of unigenes involved in sex determination were identified, as well as microsatellites and SNP variants. The expression patterns of sex-related genes were then validated by quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR) suggesting the high reliability of RNA-Seq results. In this study, the transcriptome of yellow catfish gonad was first sequenced, assembled, and characterized; it provides a valuable genomic resource for better understanding of yellow catfish sex determination as well as development of molecular markers, thereby assisting in the production of monosex yellow catfish for aquaculture.

  3. Homologies and homeotic transformation of the theropod ‘semilunate' carpal

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Xing; Han, Fenglu; Zhao, Qi

    2014-01-01

    The homology of the ‘semilunate' carpal, an important structure linking non-avian and avian dinosaurs, has been controversial. Here we describe the morphology of some theropod wrists, demonstrating that the ‘semilunate' carpal is not formed by the same carpal elements in all theropods possessing this feature and that the involvement of the lateralmost distal carpal in forming the ‘semilunate' carpal of birds is an inheritance from their non-avian theropod ancestors. Optimization of relevant morphological features indicates that these features evolved in an incremental way and the ‘semilunate' structure underwent a lateral shift in position during theropod evolution, possibly as a result of selection for foldable wings in birds and their close theropod relatives. We propose that homeotic transformation was involved in the evolution of the ‘semilunate' carpal. In combination with developmental data on avian wing digits, this suggests that homeosis played a significant role in theropod hand evolution in general. PMID:25116378

  4. Plasticity of gene-regulatory networks controlling sex determination: of masters, slaves, usual suspects, newcomers, and usurpators.

    PubMed

    Herpin, Amaury; Schartl, Manfred

    2015-10-01

    Sexual dimorphism is one of the most pervasive and diverse features of animal morphology, physiology, and behavior. Despite the generality of the phenomenon itself, the mechanisms controlling how sex is determined differ considerably among various organismic groups, have evolved repeatedly and independently, and the underlying molecular pathways can change quickly during evolution. Even within closely related groups of organisms for which the development of gonads on the morphological, histological, and cell biological level is undistinguishable, the molecular control and the regulation of the factors involved in sex determination and gonad differentiation can be substantially different. The biological meaning of the high molecular plasticity of an otherwise common developmental program is unknown. While comparative studies suggest that the downstream effectors of sex-determining pathways tend to be more stable than the triggering mechanisms at the top, it is still unclear how conserved the downstream networks are and how all components work together. After many years of stasis, when the molecular basis of sex determination was amenable only in the few classical model organisms (fly, worm, mouse), recently, sex-determining genes from several animal species have been identified and new studies have elucidated some novel regulatory interactions and biological functions of the downstream network, particularly in vertebrates. These data have considerably changed our classical perception of a simple linear developmental cascade that makes the decision for the embryo to develop as male or female, and how it evolves.

  5. In the platypus a meiotic chain of ten sex chromosomes shares genes with the bird Z and mammal X chromosomes.

    PubMed

    Grützner, Frank; Rens, Willem; Tsend-Ayush, Enkhjargal; El-Mogharbel, Nisrine; O'Brien, Patricia C M; Jones, Russell C; Ferguson-Smith, Malcolm A; Marshall Graves, Jennifer A

    2004-12-16

    Two centuries after the duck-billed platypus was discovered, monotreme chromosome systems remain deeply puzzling. Karyotypes of males, or of both sexes, were claimed to contain several unpaired chromosomes (including the X chromosome) that form a multi-chromosomal chain at meiosis. Such meiotic chains exist in plants and insects but are rare in vertebrates. How the platypus chromosome system works to determine sex and produce balanced gametes has been controversial for decades. Here we demonstrate that platypus have five male-specific chromosomes (Y chromosomes) and five chromosomes present in one copy in males and two copies in females (X chromosomes). These ten chromosomes form a multivalent chain at male meiosis, adopting an alternating pattern to segregate into XXXXX-bearing and YYYYY-bearing sperm. Which, if any, of these sex chromosomes bears one or more sex-determining genes remains unknown. The largest X chromosome, with homology to the human X chromosome, lies at one end of the chain, and a chromosome with homology to the bird Z chromosome lies near the other end. This suggests an evolutionary link between mammal and bird sex chromosome systems, which were previously thought to have evolved independently.

  6. Expression and phylogeny of candidate genes for sex differentiation in a primitive fish species, the Siberian sturgeon, Acipenser baerii.

    PubMed

    Berbejillo, Julio; Martinez-Bengochea, Anabel; Bedo, Gabriela; Brunet, Frédéric; Volff, Jean-Nicolas; Vizziano-Cantonnet, Denise

    2012-08-01

    The molecular mechanisms underlying testis differentiation in basal actinopterygian fish remains poorly understood. The sex differentiation period was investigated in the Siberian sturgeon, Acipenser baerii, by expression profiling of Sertoli cell transcription factors (dmrt1, sox9) that control testis differentiation in vertebrates; Leydig cell factors (cyp17a1, star) affecting androgen production; the androgen receptor (ar); a growth factor controlling testis development (igf1); and a gene coding for a gonadotropin hormone (lh). Two genes were characterised for the first time in the Siberian sturgeon (dmrt1, cyp17a1), while the others came from public databases. Sturgeon gonad development is very slow, with a late sexual differentiation time during their juvenile stage, and are still immature at 3 years of age. Immature fish showed a sex-dimorphic pattern; all the genes studied displayed a higher expression level in male gonads. We took advantage of the presence of juvenile fish with pre- and post-differentiated gonads (16 and 18 months old) to characterise them at the molecular level. The post-differentiated fish displayed a sex dimorphism of gene expression in their gonads for all genes studied, with the exception of sox9. The trends in undifferentiated fish lead us to propose that sturgeons undergoing male differentiation express high levels of Sertoli cell factors (dmrt1, sox9) and of genes involved in the production and receptivity of androgens (cyp17a1, star and ar) together with lh. Expression profiles and phylogenetic studies suggest that these genes are potential regulators of testis development in the Siberian sturgeon.

  7. Rearing environment, sex and developmental lead exposure modify gene expression in the hippocampus of behaviorally naïve animals.

    PubMed

    Anderson, D W; Mettil, W A; Schneider, J S

    2013-03-01

    Developmental lead (Pb) exposure impairs various cognitive processes and behaviors in both humans and animals. In particular, specific deficits in spatial learning and memory have been described in Pb-exposed rats. It is also known that rearing environment (i.e., non-enriched vs. enriched) can have significant influences on cognitive performance and that rearing environment and sex may modify the influence of Pb exposure on learning and memory processes. It is also known that behavioral testing can alter hippocampal gene expression and interactive effects of environment. Little is known however about the molecular correlates of developmental Pb-exposure on expression of key sets of cognition-relevant genes in the hippocampus and how sex and environmental rearing condition may modify these effects. The present study examined expression profiles of neurobiologically-relevant genes (i.e., neurotrophic factors, NMDA receptors, metabotropic glutamate receptors, synaptic function/plasticity, and transcription/gene regulation) in behaviorally naïve rats with perinatal exposure (i.e., gestation through weaning) to different levels of Pb (250, 750 and 1,500 ppm Pb acetate) in males and females raised in a non-enriched environment (standard housing without toys) or an enriched environment (large cage containing toys changed twice weekly). Unlike previous studies identifying gene changes following behavioral testing, which alters expression analysis, we identified both sex and environmental related changes in hippocampal genes following Pb exposure alone. The gene expression changes described may be associated with learning and memory and may pre-determine how cognitive profiles develop following Pb exposure.

  8. Basic helix-loop-helix transcription factor TCF21 is a downstream target of the male sex determining gene SRY.

    PubMed

    Bhandari, Ramji K; Sadler-Riggleman, Ingrid; Clement, Tracy M; Skinner, Michael K

    2011-01-01

    The cascade of molecular events involved in mammalian sex determination has been shown to involve the SRY gene, but specific downstream events have eluded researchers for decades. The current study identifies one of the first direct downstream targets of the male sex determining factor SRY as the basic-helix-loop-helix (bHLH) transcription factor TCF21. SRY was found to bind to the Tcf21 promoter and activate gene expression. Mutagenesis of SRY/SOX9 response elements in the Tcf21 promoter eliminated the actions of SRY. SRY was found to directly associate with the Tcf21 promoter SRY/SOX9 response elements in vivo during fetal rat testis development. TCF21 was found to promote an in vitro sex reversal of embryonic ovarian cells to induce precursor Sertoli cell differentiation. TCF21 and SRY had similar effects on the in vitro sex reversal gonadal cell transcriptomes. Therefore, SRY acts directly on the Tcf21 promoter to in part initiate a cascade of events associated with Sertoli cell differentiation and embryonic testis development.

  9. Sex-related gene expression profiles in the adrenal cortex in the mature rat: microarray analysis with emphasis on genes involved in steroidogenesis.

    PubMed

    Trejter, Marcin; Hochol, Anna; Tyczewska, Marianna; Ziolkowska, Agnieszka; Jopek, Karol; Szyszka, Marta; Malendowicz, Ludwik K; Rucinski, Marcin

    2015-03-01

    Notable sex-related differences exist in mammalian adrenal cortex structure and function. In adult rats, the adrenal weight and the average volume of zona fasciculata cells of females are larger and secrete greater amounts of corticosterone than those of males. The molecular bases of these sex-related differences are poorly understood. In this study, to explore the molecular background of these differences, we defined zone- and sex-specific transcripts in adult male and female (estrous cycle phase) rats. Twelve-week-old rats of both genders were used and samples were taken from the zona glomerulosa (ZG) and zona fasciculata/reticularis (ZF/R) zones. Transcriptome identification was carried out using the Affymetrix(®) Rat Gene 1.1 ST Array. The microarray data were compared by fold change with significance according to moderated t-statistics. Subsequently, we performed functional annotation clustering using the Gene Ontology (GO) and Database for Annotation, Visualization and Integrated Discovery (DAVID). In the first step, we explored differentially expressed transcripts in the adrenal ZG and ZF/R. The number of differentially expressed transcripts was notably higher in the female than in the male rats (702 vs. 571). The differentially expressed genes which were significantly enriched included genes involved in steroid hormone metabolism, and their expression levels in the ZF/R of adult female rats were significantly higher compared with those in the male rats. In the female ZF/R, when compared with that of the males, prevailing numbers of genes linked to cell fraction, oxidation/reduction processes, response to nutrients and to extracellular stimuli or steroid hormone stimuli were downregulated. The microarray data for key genes involved directly in steroidogenesis were confirmed by qPCR. Thus, when compared with that of the males, in the female ZF/R, higher expression levels of genes involved directly in steroid hormone synthesis were accompanied by lower

  10. Sex differences in the development of diabetes in mice with deleted wolframin (Wfs1) gene.

    PubMed

    Noormets, K; Kõks, S; Muldmaa, M; Mauring, L; Vasar, E; Tillmann, V

    2011-05-01

    Wolfram syndrome, caused by mutations in the wolframin (Wfs1) gene, is characterised by juvenile-onset diabetes mellitus, progressive optic atrophy, diabetes insipidus and deafness. Diabetes tend to start earlier in boys. This study investigated sex differences in longitudinal changes in blood glucose concentration (BGC) in wolframin-deficient mice (Wfs1KO) and compared their plasma proinsulin and insulin levels with those of wild-type (wt) mice. Non-fasting BGC was measured weekly in 42 (21 males) mice from both groups at nine weeks of age. An intraperitoneal glucose tolerance test (IPGTT) was conducted at the 30 (th) week and plasma insulin, c-peptide and proinsulin levels were measured at the 32 (nd) week. At the 32 (nd) week, Wfs1KO males had increased BGC compared to wt males (9.40±0.60 mmol/l vs. 7.91±0.20 mmol/l; p<0.05). The opposite tendency was seen in females. Both male and female Wfs1KO mice had impaired glucose tolerance on IPGTT. Wfs1KO males had significantly lower mean plasma insulin levels than wt males (57.78±1.80 ng/ml vs. 69.42±3.06 ng/ml; p<0.01) and Wfs1KO females (70.30±4.42 ng/ml; p<0.05). Wfs1KO males had a higher proinsulin/insulin ratio than wt males (0.09±0.02 vs. 0.05±0.01; p=0.05) and Wfs1KO females (0.04±0.01; p<0.05). Plasma c-peptide levels in males were lower in Wfs1KO males (mean 55.3±14.0 pg/ml vs. 112.7±21.9 pg/ml; p<0.05). Male Wfs1KO mice had a greater risk of developing diabetes than female Wfs1KO mice. Low plasma insulin concentration with an increased proinsulin/insulin ratio in Wfs1KO males indicates possible disturbances in converting proinsulin to insulin which in long-term may lead to insulin deficiency. Further investigation is needed to clarify the mechanism for the sex differences in the development of diabetes in Wolfram syndrome.

  11. The Role of Genetic Sex in Affect Regulation and Expression of GABA-Related Genes Across Species

    PubMed Central

    Seney, Marianne L.; Chang, Lun-Ching; Oh, Hyunjung; Wang, Xingbin; Tseng, George C.; Lewis, David A.; Sibille, Etienne

    2013-01-01

    Although circulating hormones and inhibitory gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)-related factors are known to affect mood, considerable knowledge gaps persist for biological mechanisms underlying the female bias in mood disorders. Here, we combine human and mouse studies to investigate sexual dimorphism in the GABA system in the context of major depressive disorder (MDD) and then use a genetic model to dissect the role of sex-related factors in GABA-related gene expression and anxiety-/depressive-like behaviors in mice. First, using meta-analysis of gene array data in human postmortem brain (N = 51 MDD subjects, 50 controls), we show that the previously reported down-regulation in MDD of somatostatin (SST), a marker of a GABA neuron subtype, is significantly greater in women with MDD. Second, using gene co-expression network analysis in control human subjects (N = 214; two frontal cortex regions) and expression quantitative trait loci mapping (N = 170 subjects), we show that expression of SST and the GABA-synthesizing enzymes glutamate decarboxylase 67 (GAD67) and GAD65 are tightly co-regulated and influenced by X-chromosome genetic polymorphisms. Third, using a rodent genetic model [Four Core Genotypes (FCG) mice], in which genetic and gonadal sex are artificially dissociated (N ≥ 12/group), we show that genetic sex (i.e., X/Y-chromosome) influences both gene expression (lower Sst, Gad67, Gad65 in XY mice) and anxiety-like behaviors (higher in XY mice). This suggests that in an intact male animal, the observed behavior represents the outcomes of male genetic sex increasing and male-like testosterone decreasing anxiety-like behaviors. Gonadal sex was the only factor influencing depressive-like behavior (gonadal males < gonadal females). Collectively, these combined human and mouse studies provide mechanistic insight into sexual dimorphism in mood disorders, and specifically demonstrate an unexpected role of male-like factors (XY genetic sex) on

  12. Y-chromosomal diversity in Haiti and Jamaica: contrasting levels of sex-biased gene flow.

    PubMed

    Simms, Tanya M; Wright, Marisil R; Hernandez, Michelle; Perez, Omar A; Ramirez, Evelyn C; Martinez, Emanuel; Herrera, Rene J

    2012-08-01

    Although previous studies have characterized the genetic structure of populations from Haiti and Jamaica using classical and autosomal STR polymorphisms, the patrilineal influences that are present in these countries have yet to be explored. To address this lacuna, the current study aims to investigate, for the first time, the potential impact of different ancestral sources, unique colonial histories, and distinct family structures on the paternal profile of both groups. According to previous reports examining populations from the Americas, island-specific demographic histories can greatly impact population structure, including various patterns of sex-biased gene flow. Also, given the contrasting autosomal profiles provided in our earlier study (Simms et al.: Am J Phys Anthropol 142 (2010) 49-66), we hypothesize that the degree and directionality of gene flow from Europeans, Africans, Amerindians, and East Asians are dissimilar in the two countries. To test this premise, 177 high-resolution Y-chromosome binary markers and 17 Y-STR loci were typed in Haiti (n = 123) and Jamaica (n = 159) and subsequently utilized for phylogenetic comparisons to available reference collections encompassing Africa, Europe, Asia (East and South), and the New World. Our results reveal that both studied populations exhibit a predominantly South-Saharan paternal component, with haplogroups A1b-V152, A3-M32, B2-M182, E1a-M33, E1b1a-M2, E2b-M98, and R1b2-V88 comprising 77.2% and 66.7% of the Haitian and Jamaican paternal gene pools, respectively. Yet, European derived chromosomes (i.e., haplogroups G2a*-P15, I-M258, R1b1b-M269, and T-M184) were detected at commensurate levels in Haiti (20.3%) and Jamaica (18.9%), whereas Y-haplogroups indicative of Chinese [O-M175 (3.8%)] and Indian [H-M69 (0.6%) and L-M20 (0.6%)] ancestry were restricted to Jamaica.

  13. A new physical mapping approach refines the sex-determining gene positions on the Silene latifolia Y-chromosome

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kazama, Yusuke; Ishii, Kotaro; Aonuma, Wataru; Ikeda, Tokihiro; Kawamoto, Hiroki; Koizumi, Ayako; Filatov, Dmitry A.; Chibalina, Margarita; Bergero, Roberta; Charlesworth, Deborah; Abe, Tomoko; Kawano, Shigeyuki

    2016-01-01

    Sex chromosomes are particularly interesting regions of the genome for both molecular genetics and evolutionary studies; yet, for most species, we lack basic information, such as the gene order along the chromosome. Because they lack recombination, Y-linked genes cannot be mapped genetically, leaving physical mapping as the only option for establishing the extent of synteny and homology with the X chromosome. Here, we developed a novel and general method for deletion mapping of non-recombining regions by solving “the travelling salesman problem”, and evaluate its accuracy using simulated datasets. Unlike the existing radiation hybrid approach, this method allows us to combine deletion mutants from different experiments and sources. We applied our method to a set of newly generated deletion mutants in the dioecious plant Silene latifolia and refined the locations of the sex-determining loci on its Y chromosome map.

  14. A new physical mapping approach refines the sex-determining gene positions on the Silene latifolia Y-chromosome

    PubMed Central

    Kazama, Yusuke; Ishii, Kotaro; Aonuma, Wataru; Ikeda, Tokihiro; Kawamoto, Hiroki; Koizumi, Ayako; Filatov, Dmitry A.; Chibalina, Margarita; Bergero, Roberta; Charlesworth, Deborah; Abe, Tomoko; Kawano, Shigeyuki

    2016-01-01

    Sex chromosomes are particularly interesting regions of the genome for both molecular genetics and evolutionary studies; yet, for most species, we lack basic information, such as the gene order along the chromosome. Because they lack recombination, Y-linked genes cannot be mapped genetically, leaving physical mapping as the only option for establishing the extent of synteny and homology with the X chromosome. Here, we developed a novel and general method for deletion mapping of non-recombining regions by solving “the travelling salesman problem”, and evaluate its accuracy using simulated datasets. Unlike the existing radiation hybrid approach, this method allows us to combine deletion mutants from different experiments and sources. We applied our method to a set of newly generated deletion mutants in the dioecious plant Silene latifolia and refined the locations of the sex-determining loci on its Y chromosome map. PMID:26742857

  15. Transcriptome Sequencing Analysis and Functional Identification of Sex Differentiation Genes from the Mosquito Parasitic Nematode, Romanomermis wuchangensis

    PubMed Central

    Duan, Mingyue; Xiong, Jinfeng; Lu, Dandan; Wang, Guoxiu; Ai, Hui

    2016-01-01

    Mosquito-transmitted diseases like malaria and dengue fever are global problem and an estimated 50–100 million of dengue or dengue hemorrhagic fever cases are reported worldwide every year. The mermithid nematode Romanomermis wuchangensis has been successfully used as an ecosystem-friendly biocontrol agent for mosquito prevention in laboratory studies. However, this nematode can not undergo sex differentiation in vitro culture, which has seriously affected their application of biocontrol in the field. In this study, based on transcriptome sequencing analysis of R. wuchangensis, Rwucmab-3, Rwuclaf-1 and Rwuctra-2 were cloned and used to investigate molecular regulatory function of sex differentiation. qRT-PCR results demonstrated that the expression level of Rwucmab-3 between male and female displayed obvious difference on the 3rd day of parasitic stage, which was earlier than Rwuclaf-1 and Rwuctra-2, highlighting sex differentiation process may start on the 3rd day of parasitic stage. Besides, FITC was used as a marker to test dsRNA uptake efficiency of R. wuchangensis, which fluorescence intensity increased with FITC concentration after 16 h incubation, indicating this nematode can successfully ingest soaking solution via its cuticle. RNAi results revealed the sex ratio of R. wuchangensis from RNAi treated groups soaked in dsRNA of Rwucmab-3 was significantly higher than gfp dsRNA treated groups and control groups, highlighting RNAi of Rwumab-3 may hinder the development of male nematodes. These results suggest that Rwucmab-3 mainly involves in the initiation of sex differentiation and the development of male sexual dimorphism. Rwuclaf-1 and Rwuctra-2 may play vital role in nematode reproductive and developmental system. In conclusion, transcript sequences presented in this study could provide more bioinformatics resources for future studies on gene cloning and other molecular regulatory mechanism in R. wuchangensis. Moreover, identification and functional

  16. Transcriptome Sequencing Analysis and Functional Identification of Sex Differentiation Genes from the Mosquito Parasitic Nematode, Romanomermis wuchangensis.

    PubMed

    Duan, Mingyue; Xiong, Jinfeng; Lu, Dandan; Wang, Guoxiu; Ai, Hui

    Mosquito-transmitted diseases like malaria and dengue fever are global problem and an estimated 50-100 million of dengue or dengue hemorrhagic fever cases are reported worldwide every year. The mermithid nematode Romanomermis wuchangensis has been successfully used as an ecosystem-friendly biocontrol agent for mosquito prevention in laboratory studies. However, this nematode can not undergo sex differentiation in vitro culture, which has seriously affected their application of biocontrol in the field. In this study, based on transcriptome sequencing analysis of R. wuchangensis, Rwucmab-3, Rwuclaf-1 and Rwuctra-2 were cloned and used to investigate molecular regulatory function of sex differentiation. qRT-PCR results demonstrated that the expression level of Rwucmab-3 between male and female displayed obvious difference on the 3rd day of parasitic stage, which was earlier than Rwuclaf-1 and Rwuctra-2, highlighting sex differentiation process may start on the 3rd day of parasitic stage. Besides, FITC was used as a marker to test dsRNA uptake efficiency of R. wuchangensis, which fluorescence intensity increased with FITC concentration after 16 h incubation, indicating this nematode can successfully ingest soaking solution via its cuticle. RNAi results revealed the sex ratio of R. wuchangensis from RNAi treated groups soaked in dsRNA of Rwucmab-3 was significantly higher than gfp dsRNA treated groups and control groups, highlighting RNAi of Rwumab-3 may hinder the development of male nematodes. These results suggest that Rwucmab-3 mainly involves in the initiation of sex differentiation and the development of male sexual dimorphism. Rwuclaf-1 and Rwuctra-2 may play vital role in nematode reproductive and developmental system. In conclusion, transcript sequences presented in this study could provide more bioinformatics resources for future studies on gene cloning and other molecular regulatory mechanism in R. wuchangensis. Moreover, identification and functional

  17. Alternative Splicing Profile and Sex-Preferential Gene Expression in the Female and Male Pacific Abalone Haliotis discus hannai.

    PubMed

    Kim, Mi Ae; Rhee, Jae-Sung; Kim, Tae Ha; Lee, Jung Sick; Choi, Ah-Young; Choi, Beom-Soon; Choi, Ik-Young; Sohn, Young Chang

    2017-03-09

    In order to characterize the female or male transcriptome of the Pacific abalone and further increase genomic resources, we sequenced the mRNA of full-length complementary DNA (cDNA) libraries derived from pooled tissues of female and male Haliotis discus hannai by employing the Iso-Seq protocol of the PacBio RSII platform. We successfully assembled whole full-length cDNA sequences and constructed a transcriptome database that included isoform information. After clustering, a total of 15,110 and 12,145 genes that coded for proteins were identified in female and male abalones, respectively. A total of 13,057 putative orthologs were retained from each transcriptome in abalones. Overall Gene Ontology terms and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathways analyzed in each database showed a similar composition between sexes. In addition, a total of 519 and 391 isoforms were genome-widely identified with at least two isoforms from female and male transcriptome databases. We found that the number of isoforms and their alternatively spliced patterns are variable and sex-dependent. This information represents the first significant contribution to sex-preferential genomic resources of the Pacific abalone. The availability of whole female and male transcriptome database and their isoform information will be useful to improve our understanding of molecular responses and also for the analysis of population dynamics in the Pacific abalone.

  18. Speciation in Passerina buntings: introgression patterns of sex-linked loci identify a candidate gene region for reproductive isolation.

    PubMed

    Carling, Matthew D; Brumfield, Robb T

    2009-03-01

    Sex-chromosomes are thought to play an important role in speciation, but few studies of non-model organisms have investigated the relative influence of multiple sex-linked markers on reproductive isolation. We collected 222 individuals along a geographical transect spanning the hybrid zone between Passerina amoena and P. cyanea (Aves: Cardinalidae). Using maximum-likelihood cline fitting methods, we estimated locus-specific introgression rates for 10 z-linked markers. Although the cline width estimates ranged from 2.8 to 584 km, eight of 10 loci had cline widths between 224 and 271 km. We also used coalescent-based estimates of locus-specific divergence times between P. amoena and P. cyanea to test a recently proposed hypothesis of an inverse relationship between divergence time and cline width but did not find a significant association. The narrow width (2.8 km) of the cline estimated from the VLDLR9 locus indicates strong selection retarding introgression of alleles at this locus across the hybrid zone. Interestingly, a mutation in the very low density lipoprotein receptor (VLDLR) gene, in which VLDLR9 is an intron, is known to reduce the egg-laying ability of some chickens, suggesting a possible link between this gene region and reproductive isolation between P. amoena and P. cyanea. These results underscore the importance of sampling multiple loci to investigate introgression patterns across a chromosome or genome and support previous findings of the importance of sex-linked genes in speciation.

  19. Alternative Splicing Profile and Sex-Preferential Gene Expression in the Female and Male Pacific Abalone Haliotis discus hannai

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Mi Ae; Rhee, Jae-Sung; Kim, Tae Ha; Lee, Jung Sick; Choi, Ah-Young; Choi, Beom-Soon; Choi, Ik-Young; Sohn, Young Chang

    2017-01-01

    In order to characterize the female or male transcriptome of the Pacific abalone and further increase genomic resources, we sequenced the mRNA of full-length complementary DNA (cDNA) libraries derived from pooled tissues of female and male Haliotis discus hannai by employing the Iso-Seq protocol of the PacBio RSII platform. We successfully assembled whole full-length cDNA sequences and constructed a transcriptome database that included isoform information. After clustering, a total of 15,110 and 12,145 genes that coded for proteins were identified in female and male abalones, respectively. A total of 13,057 putative orthologs were retained from each transcriptome in abalones. Overall Gene Ontology terms and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathways analyzed in each database showed a similar composition between sexes. In addition, a total of 519 and 391 isoforms were genome-widely identified with at least two isoforms from female and male transcriptome databases. We found that the number of isoforms and their alternatively spliced patterns are variable and sex-dependent. This information represents the first significant contribution to sex-preferential genomic resources of the Pacific abalone. The availability of whole female and male transcriptome database and their isoform information will be useful to improve our understanding of molecular responses and also for the analysis of population dynamics in the Pacific abalone. PMID:28282934

  20. Lack of global meiotic sex chromosome inactivation, and paucity of tissue-specific gene expression on the Drosophila X chromosome

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Paucity of male-biased genes on the Drosophila X chromosome is a well-established phenomenon, thought to be specifically linked to the role of these genes in reproduction and/or their expression in the meiotic male germline. In particular, meiotic sex chromosome inactivation (MSCI) has been widely considered a driving force behind depletion of spermatocyte-biased X-linked genes in Drosophila by analogy with mammals, even though the existence of global MCSI in Drosophila has not been proven. Results Microarray-based study and qRT-PCR analyses show that the dynamics of gene expression during testis development are very similar between X-linked and autosomal genes, with both showing transcriptional activation concomitant with meiosis. However, the genes showing at least ten-fold expression bias toward testis are significantly underrepresented on the X chromosome. Intriguingly, the genes with similar expression bias toward tissues other than testis, even those not apparently associated with reproduction, are also strongly underrepresented on the X. Bioinformatics analysis shows that while tissue-specific genes often bind silencing-associated factors in embryonic and cultured cells, this trend is less prominent for the X-linked genes. Conclusions Our data show that the global meiotic inactivation of the X chromosome does not occur in Drosophila. Paucity of testis-biased genes on the X appears not to be linked to reproduction or germline-specific events, but rather reflects a general underrepresentation of tissue-biased genes on this chromosome. Our analyses suggest that the activation/repression switch mechanisms that probably orchestrate the highly-biased expression of tissue-specific genes are generally not efficient on the X chromosome. This effect, probably caused by dosage compensation counteracting repression of the X-linked genes, may be the cause of the exodus of highly tissue-biased genes to the autosomes. PMID:21542906

  1. Effects of sex and site on amino acid metabolism enzyme gene expression and activity in rat white adipose tissue

    PubMed Central

    Arriarán, Sofía; Agnelli, Silvia; Remesar, Xavier; Fernández-López, José Antonio

    2015-01-01

    Background and Objectives. White adipose tissue (WAT) shows marked sex- and diet-dependent differences. However, our metabolic knowledge of WAT, especially on amino acid metabolism, is considerably limited. In the present study, we compared the influence of sex on the amino acid metabolism profile of the four main WAT sites, focused on the paths related to ammonium handling and the urea cycle, as a way to estimate the extent of WAT implication on body amino-nitrogen metabolism. Experimental Design. Adult female and male rats were maintained, undisturbed, under standard conditions for one month. After killing them under isoflurane anesthesia. WAT sites were dissected and weighed. Subcutaneous, perigonadal, retroperitoneal and mesenteric WAT were analyzed for amino acid metabolism gene expression and enzyme activities. Results. There was a considerable stability of the urea cycle activities and expressions, irrespective of sex, and with only limited influence of site. Urea cycle was more resilient to change than other site-specialized metabolic pathways. The control of WAT urea cycle was probably related to the provision of arginine/citrulline, as deduced from the enzyme activity profiles. These data support a generalized role of WAT in overall amino-N handling. In contrast, sex markedly affected WAT ammonium-centered amino acid metabolism in a site-related way, with relatively higher emphasis in males’ subcutaneous WAT. Conclusions. We found that WAT has an active amino acid metabolism. Its gene expressions were lower than those of glucose-lipid interactions, but the differences were quantitatively less important than usually reported. The effects of sex on urea cycle enzymes expression and activity were limited, in contrast with the wider variations observed in other metabolic pathways. The results agree with a centralized control of urea cycle operation affecting the adipose organ as a whole. PMID:26587356

  2. Sex and strategy use matters for pattern separation, adult neurogenesis, and immediate early gene expression in the hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Yagi, Shunya; Chow, Carmen; Lieblich, Stephanie E; Galea, Liisa A M

    2016-01-01

    Adult neurogenesis in the dentate gyrus (DG) plays a crucial role for pattern separation, and there are sex differences in the regulation of neurogenesis. Although sex differences, favoring males, in spatial navigation have been reported, it is not known whether there are sex differences in pattern separation. The current study was designed to determine whether there are sex differences in the ability for separating similar or distinct patterns, learning strategy choice, adult neurogenesis, and immediate early gene (IEG) expression in the DG in response to pattern separation training. Male and female Sprague-Dawley rats received a single injection of the DNA synthesis marker, bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU), and were tested for the ability of separating spatial patterns in a spatial pattern separation version of delayed nonmatching to place task using the eight-arm radial arm maze. Twenty-seven days following BrdU injection, rats received a probe trial to determine whether they were idiothetic or spatial strategy users. We found that male spatial strategy users outperformed female spatial strategy users only when separating similar, but not distinct, patterns. Furthermore, male spatial strategy users had greater neurogenesis in response to pattern separation training than all other groups. Interestingly, neurogenesis was positively correlated with performance on similar pattern trials during pattern separation in female spatial strategy users but negatively correlated with performance in male idiothetic strategy users. These results suggest that the survival of new neurons may play an important positive role for pattern separation of similar patterns in females. Furthermore, we found sex and strategy differences in IEG expression in the CA1 and CA3 regions in response to pattern separation. These findings emphasize the importance of studying biological sex on hippocampal function and neural plasticity.

  3. Retinoic acid metabolic genes, meiosis, and gonadal sex differentiation in zebrafish.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Marí, Adriana; Cañestro, Cristian; BreMiller, Ruth A; Catchen, Julian M; Yan, Yi-Lin; Postlethwait, John H

    2013-01-01

    To help understand the elusive mechanisms of zebrafish sex determination, we studied the genetic machinery regulating production and breakdown of retinoic acid (RA) during the onset of meiosis in gonadogenesis. Results uncovered unexpected mechanistic differences between zebrafish and mammals. Conserved synteny and expression analyses revealed that cyp26a1 in zebrafish and its paralog Cyp26b1 in tetrapods independently became the primary genes encoding enzymes available for gonadal RA-degradation, showing lineage-specific subfunctionalization of vertebrate genome duplication (VGD) paralogs. Experiments showed that zebrafish express aldh1a2, which encodes an RA-synthesizing enzyme, in the gonad rather than in the mesonephros as in mouse. Germ cells in bipotential gonads of all zebrafish analyzed were labeled by the early meiotic marker sycp3, suggesting that in zebrafish, the onset of meiosis is not sexually dimorphic as it is in mouse and is independent of Stra8, which is required in mouse but was lost in teleosts. Analysis of dead-end knockdown zebrafish depleted of germ cells revealed the germ cell-independent onset and maintenance of gonadal aldh1a2 and cyp26a1 expression. After meiosis initiated, somatic cell expression of cyp26a1 became sexually dimorphic: up-regulated in testes but not ovaries. Meiotic germ cells expressing the synaptonemal complex gene sycp3 occupied islands of somatic cells that lacked cyp26a1 expression, as predicted by the hypothesis that Cyp26a1 acts as a meiosis-inhibiting factor. Consistent with this hypothesis, females up-regulated cyp26a1 in oocytes that entered prophase-I meiotic arrest, and down-regulated cyp26a1 in oocytes resuming meiosis. Co-expression of cyp26a1 and the pluripotent germ cell stem cell marker pou5f1(oct4) in meiotically arrested oocytes was consistent with roles in mouse to promote germ cell survival and to prevent apoptosis, mechanisms that are central for tipping the sexual fate of gonads towards the female

  4. The sex-inducing pheromone and wounding trigger the same set of genes in the multicellular green alga Volvox.

    PubMed

    Amon, P; Haas, E; Sumper, M

    1998-05-01

    The sex-inducing pheromone of the multicellular green alga Volvox carteri is a glycoprotein that triggers development of males and females at a concentration <10(-16) M. By differential screening of a cDNA library, two novel genes were identified that are transcribed under the control of this pheromone. Unexpectedly, one gene product was characterized as a lysozyme/chitinase, and the other gene product was shown to encode a polypeptide with a striking modular composition. This polypeptide has a cysteine protease domain separated by an extensin-like module from three repeats of a chitin binding domain. In higher plants, similar protein families are known to play an important role in defense against fungi. Indeed, we found that the same set of genes triggered by the sexual pheromone was also inducible in V. carteri by wounding.

  5. The sex-inducing pheromone and wounding trigger the same set of genes in the multicellular green alga Volvox.

    PubMed Central

    Amon, P; Haas, E; Sumper, M

    1998-01-01

    The sex-inducing pheromone of the multicellular green alga Volvox carteri is a glycoprotein that triggers development of males and females at a concentration <10(-16) M. By differential screening of a cDNA library, two novel genes were identified that are transcribed under the control of this pheromone. Unexpectedly, one gene product was characterized as a lysozyme/chitinase, and the other gene product was shown to encode a polypeptide with a striking modular composition. This polypeptide has a cysteine protease domain separated by an extensin-like module from three repeats of a chitin binding domain. In higher plants, similar protein families are known to play an important role in defense against fungi. Indeed, we found that the same set of genes triggered by the sexual pheromone was also inducible in V. carteri by wounding. PMID:9596636

  6. Analyzing the Coordinated Gene Network Underlying Temperature-Dependent Sex Determination in Reptiles

    PubMed Central

    Shoemaker, Christina M.; Crews, David

    2009-01-01

    Although gonadogenesis has been extensively studied in vertebrates with genetic sex determination, investigations at the molecular level in nontraditional model organisms with temperature-dependent sex determination are a relatively new area of research. Results show that while the key players of the molecular network underlying gonad development appear to be retained, their functions range from conserved to novel roles. In this review, we summarize experiments investigating candidate molecular players underlying temperature-dependent sex determination. We discuss some of the problems encountered unraveling this network, pose potential solutions, and suggest rewarding future directions of research. PMID:19022389

  7. Identification, characterization and expression of sex-related genes in testes of the giant tiger shrimp Penaeus monodon.

    PubMed

    Leelatanawit, Rungnapa; Sittikankeaw, Kanchana; Yocawibun, Patchari; Klinbunga, Sirawut; Roytrakul, Sittiruk; Aoki, Takashi; Hirono, Ikuo; Menasveta, Piamsak

    2009-01-01

    Isolation and characterization of genes involving gonadal development are an initial step towards understanding reproductive maturation and sex determination of the giant tiger shrimp (Penaeus monodon). In the present study, 896 clones from the testis cDNA library were sequenced. A total of 606 ESTs (67.6%) significantly matched sequences in the GenBank (E-value <1e-04) whereas 290 ESTs (32.4%) were newly unidentified transcripts. The full length cDNA of genes functionally involved in testicular development including cyclophilin A (PMCYA), small ubiquitin-like modifier 1 (PMSUMO-1), ubiquitin conjugating enzyme E2, dynactin subunit 5, cell division cycle 2 (cdc2) and mitotic checkpoint BUB3 were discovered. In addition, Tra-2, a gene involving sex determination cascades, was successfully characterized by RACE-PCR and first reported in crustaceans. Expression analysis indicated that a homologue of low molecular weight neurofilament protein XNF-L (termed P. monodon testis-specific transcript 1, PMTST1; N=8 for each sex) was only expressed in testes but not ovaries. PMCYA, thyroid hormone receptor-associated protein complex 240 kDa component (Trap240), multiple inositol polyphosphate phosphatase 2 (MIPP2) and heat shock-related 70 kDa protein 2 (HSP70-2), but not PMSUMO-1, PMTra-2 and prohibitin2 were differentially expressed between ovaries and testes of P. monodon. Expression of PMTST1 was up-regulated but that of the remaining genes in testes of P. monodon broodstock was down-regulated after shrimp were molted (P<0.05). Significant reduction of PMSUMO-1 and increment of prohibitin2 transcripts in domesticated broodstock (P<0.05) suggested that these reproductively related genes may be used as biomarkers to evaluate reduced degrees of the reproductive maturation in domesticated P. monodon.

  8. From gene networks underlying sex determination and gonadal differentiation to the development of neural networks regulating sociosexual behavior.

    PubMed

    Crews, David; Lou, Wendy; Fleming, Alison; Ogawa, Sonoko

    2006-12-18

    Genes are not expressed in isolation any more than social behavior has meaning outside of society. Both are in dynamic flux with the immediate environment that the gene/individual finds itself, which in turn establishes the timing, pattern, and conditions of expression. This means that complex behaviors and their genetic underpinnings should be viewed as a cumulative process, or as the result of experiences up to that point in time and, at the same time, as setting the stage for what will follow. The evidence indicates that as experiences accumulate throughout life, early experiences shape how genes/individuals will respond to later experiences, whereas later experiences modify the effects of these earlier experiences. A method of graphically representing and analyzing change in gene and neural networks is presented. Results from several animal model systems will be described to illustrate these methods. First, we will consider the phenomenon of temperature-dependent sex determination in reptiles. We will illustrate how the experience of a particular temperature during a sensitive period of embryogenesis sculpts not only the patterns of expression of genes involved in sex determination and gonadal differentiation but also the morphological, physiological, neuroendocrine, and behavioral traits of the adult phenotype. The second model system concerns the effects of the sex ratio in the litter in rats, and the genotype ratio in the litter of transgenic mice, on the nature and frequency of maternal care and how this in turn influences the patterns of activation of identified neural circuits subserving the offspring's sociosexual behavior when it is an adult.

  9. From gene networks underlying sex determination and gonadal differentiation to the development of neural networks regulating sociosexual behavior

    PubMed Central

    Crews, David; Lou, Wendy; Fleming, Alison; Ogawa, Sonoko

    2008-01-01

    Genes are not expressed in isolation any more than social behavior has meaning outside of society. Both are in dynamic flux with the immediate environment that the gene/individual finds itself, which in turn establishes the timing, pattern, and conditions of expression. This means that complex behaviors and their genetic underpinnings should be viewed as a cumulative process, or as the result of experiences up to that point in time and, at the same time, as setting the stage for what will follow. The evidence indicates that as experiences accumulate throughout life, early experiences shape how genes/individuals will respond to later experiences, whereas later experiences modify the effects of these earlier experiences. A method of graphically representing and analyzing change in gene and neural networks is presented. Results from several animal model systems will be described to illustrate these methods. First, we will consider the phenomenon of temperature-dependent sex determination in reptiles. We will illustrate how the experience of a particular temperature during a sensitive period of embryogenesis sculpts not only the patterns of expression of genes involved in sex determination and gonadal differentiation but also the morphological, physiological, neuroendocrine, and behavioral traits of the adult phenotype. The second model system concerns the effects of the sex ratio in the litter in rats, and the genotype ratio in the litter of transgenic mice, on the nature and frequency of maternal care and how this in turn influences the patterns of activation of identified neural circuits subserving the offspring's sociosexual behavior when it is an adult. PMID:16905124

  10. Evolutionary Dynamics of Floral Homeotic Transcription Factor Protein–Protein Interactions

    PubMed Central

    Bartlett, Madelaine; Thompson, Beth; Brabazon, Holly; Del Gizzi, Robert; Zhang, Thompson; Whipple, Clinton

    2016-01-01

    Protein–protein interactions (PPIs) have widely acknowledged roles in the regulation of development, but few studies have addressed the timing and mechanism of shifting PPIs over evolutionary history. The B-class MADS-box transcription factors, PISTILLATA (PI) and APETALA3 (AP3) are key regulators of floral development. PI-like (PIL) and AP3-like (AP3L) proteins from a number of plants, including Arabidopsis thaliana (Arabidopsis) and the grass Zea mays (maize), bind DNA as obligate heterodimers. However, a PIL protein from the grass relative Joinvillea can bind DNA as a homodimer. To ascertain whether Joinvillea PIL homodimerization is an anomaly or indicative of broader trends, we characterized PIL dimerization across the Poales and uncovered unexpected evolutionary lability. Both obligate B-class heterodimerization and PIL homodimerization have evolved multiple times in the order, by distinct molecular mechanisms. For example, obligate B-class heterodimerization in maize evolved very recently from PIL homodimerization. A single amino acid change, fixed during domestication, is sufficient to toggle one maize PIL protein between homodimerization and obligate heterodimerization. We detected a signature of positive selection acting on residues preferentially clustered in predicted sites of contact between MADS-box monomers and dimers, and in motifs that mediate MADS PPI specificity in Arabidopsis. Changing one positively selected residue can alter PIL dimerization activity. Furthermore, ectopic expression of a Joinvillea PIL homodimer in Arabidopsis can homeotically transform sepals into petals. Our results provide a window into the evolutionary remodeling of PPIs, and show that novel interactions have the potential to alter plant form in a context-dependent manner. PMID:26908583

  11. The transformer genes in the fig wasp Ceratosolen solmsi provide new evidence for duplications independent of complementary sex determination.

    PubMed

    Jia, L-Y; Xiao, J-H; Xiong, T-L; Niu, L-M; Huang, D-W

    2016-06-01

    Transformer (tra) is the key gene that turns on the sex-determination cascade in Drosophila melanogaster and in some other insects. The honeybee Apis mellifera has two duplicates of tra, one of which (complementary sex determiner, csd) is the primary signal for complementary sex-determination (CSD), regulating the other duplicate (feminizer). Two tra duplicates have been found in some other hymenopteran species, resulting in the assumption that a single ancestral duplication of tra took place in the Hymenoptera. Here, we searched for tra homologues and pseudogenes in the Hymenoptera, focusing on five newly published hymenopteran genomes. We found three tra copies in the fig wasp Ceratosolen solmsi. Further evolutionary and expression analyses also showed that the two duplicates (Csoltra-B and Csoltra-C) are under positive selection, and have female-specific expression, suggesting possible sex-related functions. Moreover, Aculeata species exhibit many pseudogenes generated by lineage-specific duplications. We conclude that phylogenetic reconstruction and pseudogene screening provide novel evidence supporting the hypothesis of independent duplications rather an ancestral origin of multiple tra paralogues in the Hymenoptera. The case of C. solmsi is the first example of a non-CSD species with duplicated tra, contrary to the previous assumption that derived tra paralogues function as the CSD locus.

  12. Molecular identification and expression of the Foxl2 gene during gonadal sex differentiation in northern snakehead Channa argus.

    PubMed

    Wang, Dan-Dan; Zhang, Gui-Rong; Wei, Kai-Jian; Ji, Wei; Gardner, Jonathan P A; Yang, Rui-Bin; Chen, Kun-Ci

    2015-12-01

    Channa argus is one of the most commercially important fish species in China. Studies show that males of C. argus grow faster than females at the same age. In order to explore the sex differentiation mechanism of C. argus, we isolated the full length of the sex-related gene Foxl2 cDNA and analysed its expression patterns during gonadal sex differentiation. Alignment of known Foxl2 amino acid sequences from vertebrates confirmed the conservation of the Foxl2 open reading frame, especially the forkhead domain and C-terminal region. Quantitative RT-PCR revealed that Foxl2 is predominantly expressed in brain, pituitary, gill and ovary, with its highest level in ovary but low levels in testis and other tissues, reflecting a potential role for Foxl2 in the brain-pituitary-gonad axis in C. argus. Our ontogenetic stage data showed that C. argus Foxl2 expression was significantly upregulated from 1 to 11 days posthatching (dph) and that the initiation of expression preceded the first anatomical ovarian differentiation (27 dph), suggesting that Foxl2 might play a potential role in early gonadal sex differentiation in C. argus. In addition, the Foxl2 protein was primarily located in granulosa cells surrounding the oocytes of mature C. argus, implying that Foxl2 may have a basic function in granulosa cell differentiation and the maintenance of oocytes.

  13. Sex ratio in silver foxes: effects of domestication and the star gene.

    PubMed

    Trut, L N

    1996-01-01

    The course of changes in secondary sex ratio (proportion of males at birth) in silver foxes bred at the fur farm of this Institute was analyzed. Data collected over several years of breeding of a domesticated (experimental) population selected for amenability to domestication and of a commercial (control) were compared. A tendency to increase in secondary sex ratio was demonstrated in both populations. However, the proportion of males at birth was higher in domestic foxes. This proportion, calculated from the combined data for 1978-1993, was 0.538±0.005 and 0.511±0.007 in the selected and commercial populations, respectively. The minimal departure of the observed sex ratio from 0.5 was demonstrated for litters with five pups, which is close to the average litter size in fox populations. The proportion of males increases with both increasing and decreasing litter size. An analysis of secondary sex ratio with respect to maternal age revealed a minimal departure of sex ratio from the expected in offspring from foxes of optimal reproductive age (2-4 years). An effect of the autosomal semidominant coat color mutation star on male excess at birth was also found: secondary sex ratio was higher (0.583±0.015) in offspring of mothers heterozygous for the star mutation than from standard types of the domesticated population. The increase in secondary sex ratio in the analyzed fox populations is viewed as a correlated response to selection for domestication. The hormonal mechanisms mediating the effects of both this selection and the star mutation on sex ratio at birth are discussed.

  14. New developmental evidence supports a homeotic frameshift of digit identity in the evolution of the bird wing

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The homology of the digits in the bird wing is a high-profile controversy in developmental and evolutionary biology. The embryonic position of the digits cartilages with respect to the primary axis (ulnare and ulna) corresponds to 2, 3, 4, but comparative-evolutionary morphology supports 1, 2, 3. A homeotic frameshift of digit identity in evolution could explain how cells in embryonic positions 2, 3, 4 began developing morphologies 1, 2, 3. Another alternative is that no re-patterning of cell fates occurred, and the primary axis shifted its position by some other mechanism. In the wing, only the anterior digit lacks expression of HoxD10 and HoxD12, resembling digit 1 of other limbs, as predicted by 1, 2, 3. However, upon loss of digit 1 in evolution, the most anterior digit 2 could have lost their expression, deceitfully resembling a digit 1. To test this notion, we observed HoxD10 and HoxD12 in a limb where digit 2 is the most anterior digit: The rabbit foot. We also explored whether early inhibition of Shh signalling in the embryonic wing bud induces an experimental homeotic frameshift, or an experimental axis shift. We tested these hypotheses using DiI injections to study the fate of cells in these experimental wings. Results We found strong transcription of HoxD10 and HoxD12 was present in the most anterior digit 2 of the rabbit foot. Thus, we found no evidence to question the use of HoxD expression as support for 1, 2, 3. When Shh signalling in early wing buds is inhibited, our fate maps demonstrate that an experimental homeotic frameshift is induced. Conclusion Along with comparative morphology, HoxD expression provides strong support for 1, 2, 3 identity of wing digits. As an explanation for the offset 2, 3, 4 embryological position, the homeotic frameshift hypothesis is consistent with known mechanisms of limb development, and further proven to be experimentally possible. In contrast, the underlying mechanisms and experimental plausibility of an

  15. RNAi-Mediated Gene Silencing in a Gonad Organ Culture to Study Sex Determination Mechanisms in Sea Turtle

    PubMed Central

    Sifuentes-Romero, Itzel; Merchant-Larios, Horacio; Milton, Sarah L.; Moreno-Mendoza, Norma; Díaz-Hernández, Verónica; García-Gasca, Alejandra

    2013-01-01

    The autosomal Sry-related gene, Sox9, encodes a transcription factor, which performs an important role in testis differentiation in mammals. In several reptiles, Sox9 is differentially expressed in gonads, showing a significant upregulation during the thermo-sensitive period (TSP) at the male-promoting temperature, consistent with the idea that SOX9 plays a central role in the male pathway. However, in spite of numerous studies, it remains unclear how SOX9 functions during this event. In the present work, we developed an RNAi-based method for silencing Sox9 in an in vitro gonad culture system for the sea turtle, Lepidochelys olivacea. Gonads were dissected as soon as the embryos entered the TSP and were maintained in organ culture. Transfection of siRNA resulted in the decrease of both Sox9 mRNA and protein. Furthermore, we found coordinated expression patterns for Sox9 and the anti-Müllerian hormone gene, Amh, suggesting that SOX9 could directly or indirectly regulate Amh expression, as it occurs in mammals. These results demonstrate an in vitro method to knockdown endogenous genes in gonads from a sea turtle, which represents a novel approach to investigate the roles of important genes involved in sex determination or differentiation pathways in species with temperature-dependent sex determination. PMID:24705165

  16. Sex Determination in the Nematode C. ELEGANS: Analysis of tra-3 Suppressors and Characterization of fem Genes

    PubMed Central

    Hodgkin, Jonathan

    1986-01-01

    Mutations of the gene tra-3 result in partial masculinization of XX animals of C. elegans, which are normally hermaphrodites (males are XO). A total of 43 tra-3 revertants (one intragenic, 42 extragenic) have been isolated and analyzed, in the hope of identifying new sex-determination loci. Most (38) of the extragenic suppressors cause partial or complete feminization of XX and XO animals; the remaining four are weak suppressors. The feminizing suppressors are mostly alleles of known sex-determining genes: tra-1 (11 dominant alleles), tra-2 (one dominant allele), fem-1 (four alleles) and fem-2 (four alleles), but 18 are alleles of a new gene, fem-3. Additional alleles have been isolated for the fem-2 and fem-3 genes, as well as fem-3 deficiencies. Mutations in fem-3 resemble alleles of fem-1 (previously characterized): putative null alleles result in complete feminization of XX and XO animals, transforming them into fertile females. Severe alleles of fem-2 also cause complete feminization of XX animals at all temperatures, but feminization of fem-2 XO animals is temperature-sensitive: complete at 25°, incomplete at 20°. As with fem-1, severe mutations of fem-2 and fem-3 are wholly epistatic to masculinizing alleles of tra-2 and tra-3, and epistatic to tra-1 masculinizing alleles in the germline, but not in the soma. All three fem genes are essential for male development and appear to have a dual role in promoting spermatogenesis and repressing tra-1 activity. All three fem genes exhibit strong maternal effects; the maternal contribution of fem gene products may be inactivated in XX animals by a posttranscriptional mechanism. Maternal contributions of wild-type fem-3 product are necessary for normal XO male development and XX hermaphrodite (as opposed to female) development. PMID:3770465

  17. Independent stratum formation on the avian sex chromosomes reveals inter-chromosomal gene conversion and predominance of purifying selection on the W chromosome.

    PubMed

    Wright, Alison E; Harrison, Peter W; Montgomery, Stephen H; Pointer, Marie A; Mank, Judith E

    2014-11-01

    We used a comparative approach spanning three species and 90 million years to study the evolutionary history of the avian sex chromosomes. Using whole transcriptomes, we assembled the largest cross-species dataset of W-linked coding content to date. Our results show that recombination suppression in large portions of the avian sex chromosomes has evolved independently, and that long-term sex chromosome divergence is consistent with repeated and independent inversions spreading progressively to restrict recombination. In contrast, over short-term periods we observe heterogeneous and locus-specific divergence. We also uncover four instances of gene conversion between both highly diverged and recently evolved gametologs, suggesting a complex mosaic of recombination suppression across the sex chromosomes. Lastly, evidence from 16 gametologs reveal that the W chromosome is evolving with a significant contribution of purifying selection, consistent with previous findings that W-linked genes play an important role in encoding sex-specific fitness.

  18. Exercise, sex, menstrual cycle phase, and 17beta-estradiol influence metabolism-related genes in human skeletal muscle.

    PubMed

    Fu, Ming-hua H; Maher, Amy C; Hamadeh, Mazen J; Ye, Changhua; Tarnopolsky, Mark A

    2009-12-30

    Higher fat and lower carbohydrate and amino acid oxidation are observed in women compared with men during endurance exercise. We hypothesized that the observed sex difference is due to estrogen and that menstrual cycle phase or supplementation of men with 17beta-estradiol (E(2)) would coordinately influence the mRNA content of genes involved in lipid and/or carbohydrate metabolism in skeletal muscle. Twelve men and twelve women had muscle biopsies taken before and immediately after 90 min of cycling at 65% peak oxygen consumption (Vo(2peak)). Women were studied in the midfollicular (Fol) and midluteal (Lut) phases, and men were studied after 8 days of E(2) or placebo supplementation. Targeted RT-PCR was used to compare mRNA content for genes involved in transcriptional regulation and lipid, carbohydrate, and amino acid metabolism. Sex was the greatest predictor of substrate metabolism gene content. Sex affected the mRNA content of FATm, FABPc, SREBP-1c, mtGPAT, PPARdelta, PPARalpha, CPTI, TFP-alpha, GLUT4, HKII, PFK, and BCOADK (P < 0.05). E(2) administration significantly (P < 0.05) affected the mRNA content of PGC-1alpha, PPARalpha, PPARdelta, TFP-alpha, CPTI, SREBP-1c, mtGPAT, GLUT4, GS-1, and AST. Acute exercise increased the mRNA abundance for PGC-1alpha, HSL, FABPc, CPTI, GLUT4, HKII, and AST (P < 0.05). Menstrual cycle had a small effect on PPARdelta, GP, and glycogenin mRNA content. Overall, women have greater mRNA content for several genes involved in lipid metabolism, which is partially due to an effect of E(2).

  19. Regulation of XFGF8 gene expression through SRY (sex-determining region Y)-box 2 in developing Xenopus embryos.

    PubMed

    Kim, Yong Hwan; Shin, Jee Yoon; Na, Wonho; Kim, Jungho; Ju, Bong-Gun; Kim, Won-Sun

    2012-01-01

    Fibroblast growth factors (FGFs) function as mitogens and morphogens during vertebrate development. In the present study, to characterise the regulatory mechanism of FGF8 gene expression in developing Xenopus embryos the upstream region of the Xenopus FGF8 (XFGF8) gene was isolated. The upstream region of the XFGF8 gene contains two putative binding sites for the SRY (sex-determining region Y)-box 2 (SOX2) transcription factor. A reporter assay with serially deleted constructs revealed that the putative SOX2-binding motif may be a critical cis-element for XFGF8 gene activation in developing Xenopus embryos. Furthermore, Xenopus SOX2 (XSOX2) physically interacted with the SOX2-binding motif within the upstream region of the XFGF8 gene in vitro and in vivo. Depletion of endogenous XSOX2 resulted in loss of XFGF8 gene expression in midbrain-hindbrain junction, auditory placode, lens placode and forebrain in developing Xenopus embryos. Collectively, our results suggest that XSOX2 directly upregulates XFGF8 gene expression in the early embryonic development of Xenopus.

  20. Sex-dependent changes in cerebellar thyroid hormone-dependent gene expression following perinatal exposure to thimerosal in rats.

    PubMed

    Khan, A; Sulkowski, Z L; Chen, T; Zavacki, A M; Sajdel-Sulkowska, E M

    2012-06-01

    Mammalian brain development is regulated by the action of thyroid hormone (TH) on target genes. We have previously shown that the perinatal exposure to thimerosal (TM, metabolized to ethylmercury) exerts neurotoxic effects on the developing cerebellum and is associated with a decrease in cerebellar D2 activity, which could result in local brain T3 deficiency. We have also begun to examine TM effect on gene expression. The objective of this study was to expand on our initial observation of altered cerebellar gene expression following perinatal TM exposure and to examine additional genes that include both TH-dependent as well as other genes critical for cerebellar development in male and female neonates exposed perinatally (G10-G15 and P5 to P10) to TM. We report here for the first time that expression of suppressor-of-white-apricot-1 (SWAP-1), a gene negatively regulated by T3, was increased in TM-exposed males (61.1% increase), but not in females; (p<0.05). Positively regulated T3-target genes, Purkinje cell protein 2 (Pcp2; p=0.07) and Forkhead box protein P4 (FoxP4; p=0.08), showed a trend towards decreased expression in TM-exposed males. The expression of deiodinase 2 (DIO2) showed a trend towards an increase in TM-exposed females, while deiodinase 3 (DIO3), transthyretin (TTR), brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and reelin (RELN) was not significantly altered in either sex. Since regulation of gene splicing is vital to neuronal proliferation and differentiation, altered expression of SWAP-1 may exert wide ranging effects on multiple genes involved in the regulation of cerebellar development. We have previously identified activation of another TH-dependent gene, outer dense fiber of sperm tails 4, in the TM exposed male pups. Together, these results also show sex-dependent differences between the toxic impacts of TM in males and females. Interestingly, the genes that were activated by TM are negatively regulated by TH, supporting our hypothesis of local

  1. Investigation of mutations in the SRY, SOX9, and DAX1 genes in sex reversal patients from the Sichuan region of China.

    PubMed

    Chen, L; Ding, X P; Wei, X; Li, L X

    2014-03-12

    We investigated the molecular genetic mechanism of sex reversal by exploring the relationship between mutations in the sex-determining genes SRY, SOX9, and DAX1 with genetic sex reversal disease. Mutations in the three key genes were detected by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and sequencing after karyotype analysis. The mutations detected were then aligned with a random sample of 100 normal sequences and the NCBI sequence database in order to confirm any new mutations. Furthermore, the copy number of SOX9 was measured by fluorescence quantitative PCR. Seven of the 10 male sex reversal patients (46, XX) contained an excess copy of the SRY gene, while one of the eight female sex reversal patients (46, XY) was lacking the SRY gene. Additionally, a new mutation (T-A, Asp24Lys) was detected in one female sex reversal patient (46, XY). No other mutation was detected in the analysis of SOX9 and DAX1, with the exception of an insertion mutation (c.35377791insG) found in the testicular-specific enhancer (TESCO) sequences in an SRY-positive female sex reversal patient (46, XY). Eight of the 18 sex reversal cases (44.4%) showed obvious connections with SRY gene translocations, mutations, or deletions, which was significantly higher than that reported previously (33.3%), indicating a need to further expand the range of sample collection. Overall, these results indicated that the main mechanism of sex reversal are not associated with mutations in the coding regions of SOX9 and DAX1 or copy number variations of SOX9, which is consistent with results of previous studies.

  2. Identification of Regions Interacting with Ovo(d) Mutations: Potential New Genes Involved in Germline Sex Determination or Differentiation in Drosophila Melanogaster

    PubMed Central

    Pauli, D.; Oliver, B.; Mahowald, A. P.

    1995-01-01

    Only a few Drosophila melanogaster germline sex determination genes are known, and there have been no systematic screens to identify new genes involved in this important biological process. The ovarian phenotypes produced by females mutant for dominant alleles of the ovo gene are modified in flies with altered doses of other loci involved in germline sex determination in Drosophila (Sex-lethal(+), sans fille(+) and ovarian tumor(+)). This observation constitutes the basis for a screen to identify additional genes required for proper establishment of germline sexual identity. We tested 300 deletions, which together cover ~58% of the euchromatic portion of the genome, for genetic interactions with ovo(D). Hemizygosity for more than a dozen small regions show interactions that either partially suppress or enhance the ovarian phenotypes of females mutant for one or more of the three dominant ovo mutations. These regions probably contain genes whose products act in developmental hierarchies that include ovo(+) protein. PMID:7713427

  3. VviAPRT3 and VviFSEX: Two Genes Involved in Sex Specification Able to Distinguish Different Flower Types in Vitis

    PubMed Central

    Coito, João L.; Ramos, Miguel J. N.; Cunha, Jorge; Silva, Helena G.; Amâncio, Sara; Costa, Maria M. R.; Rocheta, Margarida

    2017-01-01

    Vitis vinifera vinifera is a hermaphrodite subspecies, while its ancestor, Vitis vinifera sylvestris, is dioecious. We have identified two genes that together allow the discrimination between male, female and hermaphrodite Vitis plants. The sex locus region on chromosome 2 was screened resulting in the discovery of a new gene, VviFSEX. The same screening revealed another gene, VviAPRT3, located in the sex region, that be used as a sex marker. Both genes are good candidates to be involved in flower sex differentiation in grapevine. To assess their role in sex specification, spatial and temporal expression analysis was performed. The expression of VviFSEX is detected in petals, stamens and carpel primordia of all flower types, making its putative function unclear; however, female plants display a single allele for this gene, while male and hermaphrodites display two alleles. On the other hand, the specific expression of VviAPRT3 in the carpel primordial of male plants suggests a possible role in the abortion of pistil structures. We propose a model to explain the carpel abortion in male flowers and the absence of stamen viability in female flowers. In addition, this work reinforces the presence of a sex locus on Vitis chromosome 2. PMID:28197167

  4. Sex-biased gene flow in spectacled eiders (Anatidae): Inferences from molecular markers with contrasting modes of inheritance

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Scribner, Kim T.; Petersen, Margaret R.; Fields, Raymond L.; Talbot, Sandra L.; Pearce, John M.; Chesser, Ronald K.

    2001-01-01

    Genetic markers that differ in mode of inheritance and rate of evolution (a sex-linked Z-specific microsatellite locus, five biparentally inherited microsatellite loci, and maternally inherited mitochondrial [mtDNA] sequences) were used to evaluate the degree of spatial genetic structuring at macro- and microgeographic scales, among breeding regions and local nesting populations within each region, respectively, for a migratory sea duck species, the spectacled eider (Somateria fisheri). Disjunct and declining breeding populations coupled with sex-specific differences in seasonal migratory patterns and life history provide a series of hypotheses regarding rates and directionality of gene flow among breeding populations from the Indigirka River Delta, Russia, and the North Slope and Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta, Alaska. The degree of differentiation in mtDNA haplotype frequency among breeding regions and populations within regions was high (ϕCT = 0.189, P < 0.01; ϕSC = 0.059, P < 0.01, respectively). Eleven of 17 mtDNA haplotypes were restricted to a single breeding region. Genetic differences among regions were considerably lower for nuclear DNA loci (sex-linked: ϕST = 0.001, P > 0.05; biparentally inherited microsatellites: mean θ = 0.001, P > 0.05) than was observed for mtDNA. Using models explicitly designed for uniparental and biparentally inherited genes, estimates of spatial divergence based on nuclear and mtDNA data together with elements of the species' breeding ecology were used to estimate effective population size and degree of male and female gene flow. Differences in the magnitude and spatial patterns of gene correlations for maternally inherited and nuclear genes revealed that females exhibit greater natal philopatry than do males. Estimates of generational female and male rates of gene flow among breeding regions differed markedly (3.67 × 10−4 and 1.28 × 10−2, respectively). Effective population size for mtDNA was estimated to be at least three

  5. Genome-wide analysis of brain and gonad transcripts reveals changes of key sex reversal-related genes expression and signaling pathways in three stages of Monopterus albus

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Qing; Guo, Wei; Li, Dapeng

    2017-01-01

    Background The natural sex reversal severely affects the sex ratio and thus decreases the productivity of the rice field eel (Monopterus albus). How to understand and manipulate this process is one of the major issues for the rice field eel stocking. So far the genomics and transcriptomics data available for this species are still scarce. Here we provide a comprehensive study of transcriptomes of brain and gonad tissue in three sex stages (female, intersex and male) from the rice field eel to investigate changes in transcriptional level during the sex reversal process. Results Approximately 195 thousand unigenes were generated and over 44.4 thousand were functionally annotated. Comparative study between stages provided multiple differentially expressed genes in brain and gonad tissue. Overall 4668 genes were found to be of unequal abundance between gonad tissues, far more than that of the brain tissues (59 genes). These genes were enriched in several different signaling pathways. A number of 231 genes were found with different levels in gonad in each stage, with several reproduction-related genes included. A total of 19 candidate genes that could be most related to sex reversal were screened out, part of these genes’ expression patterns were validated by RT-qPCR. The expression of spef2, maats1, spag6 and dmc1 were abundant in testis, but was barely detected in females, while the 17β-hsd12, zpsbp3, gal3 and foxn5 were only expressed in ovary. Conclusion This study investigated the complexity of brain and gonad transcriptomes in three sex stages of the rice field eel. Integrated analysis of different gene expression and changes in signaling pathways, such as PI3K-Akt pathway, provided crucial data for further study of sex transformation mechanisms. PMID:28319194

  6. Emergence of male-biased genes on the chicken Z-chromosome: sex-chromosome contrasts between male and female heterogametic systems.

    PubMed

    Ellegren, Hans

    2011-12-01

    There has been extensive traffic of male-biased genes out of the mammalian and Drosophila X-chromosomes, and there are also reports of an under-representation of male-biased genes on the X. This may reflect an adaptive process driven by natural selection where an autosomal location of male-biased genes is favored since male genes are only exposed to selection one-third of the time when X-linked. However, there are several alternative explanations to "out-of-the-X" gene movement, including mutational bias and a means for X-linked genes to escape meiotic sex chromosome inactivation (MSCI) during spermatogenesis. As a critical test of the hypothesis that genomic relocation of sex-biased genes is an adaptive process, I examined the emergence, and loss, of genes on the chicken Z-chromosome, i.e., a female heterogametic system (males ZZ, females ZW). Here, the analogous prediction would be an emergence of male-biased genes onto, not a loss from, the Z-chromosome because Z is found more often in males than autosomes are. I found that genes expressed in testis but not in ovary are highly over-represented among genes that have emerged on the Z-chromosome during avian evolution. Moreover, genes with male-biased expression are similarly over-represented among new Z-chromosomal genes. Interestingly, genes with female-biased expression have more often moved from than to the Z-chromosome. These observations show that male and female heterogametic organisms display opposing directionalities in the emergence and loss of sex-biased genes on sex chromosomes. This is consistent with theoretical models on the evolution of sexually antagonistic genes in which new mutations are at least partly dominant.

  7. Putative pathway of sex pheromone biosynthesis and degradation by expression patterns of genes identified from female pheromone gland and adult antenna of Sesamia inferens (Walker).

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ya-Nan; Xia, Yi-Han; Zhu, Jia-Yao; Li, Sheng-Yun; Dong, Shuang-Lin

    2014-05-01

    The general pathway of biosynthesis and degradation for Type-I sex pheromones in moths is well established, but some genes involved in this pathway remain to be characterized. The purple stem borer, Sesamia inferens, employs a pheromone blend containing components with three different terminal functional groups (Z11-16:OAc, Z11-16:OH, and Z11-16:Ald) of Type-I sex pheromones. Thus, it provides a good model to study the diversity of genes involved in pheromone biosynthesis and degradation pathways. By analyzing previously obtained transcriptomic data of the sex pheromone glands and antennae, we identified 73 novel genes that are possibly related to pheromone biosynthesis (46 genes) or degradation (27 genes). Gene expression patterns and phylogenetic analysis revealed that one desaturase (SinfDes4), one fatty acid reductase (SinfFAR2), and one fatty acid xtransport protein (SinfFATP1) genes were predominantly expressed in pheromone glands, and clustered with genes involved in pheromone synthesis in other moth species. Ten genes including five carboxylesterases (SinfCXE10, 13, 14, 18, and 20), three aldehyde oxidases (SinfAOX1, 2 and 3), and two alcohol dehydrogenases (SinfAD1 and 3) were expressed specifically or predominantly in antennae, and could be candidate genes involved in pheromone degradation. SinfAD1 and 3 are the first reported alcohol dehydrogenase genes with antennae-biased expression. Based on these results we propose a pathway involving these potential enzyme-encoding gene candidates in sex pheromone biosynthesis and degradation in S. inferens. This study provides robust background information for further elucidation of the genetic basis of sex pheromone biosynthesis and degradation, and ultimately provides potential targets to disrupt sexual communication in S. inferens for control purposes.

  8. Multiple Δ11-desaturase genes selectively used for sex pheromone biosynthesis are conserved in Ostrinia moth genomes.

    PubMed

    Fujii, Takeshi; Yasukochi, Yuji; Rong, Yu; Matsuo, Takashi; Ishikawa, Yukio

    2015-06-01

    Regulation of the expression of fatty acyl-CoA desaturases, which introduce a double bond into the fatty acid moiety of the substrate, is crucial for the production of species-specific sex pheromones in moths. In Ostrinia moths, two distinct Δ11-desaturases and a Δ14-desaturase are known to be selectively used in the biosynthesis of sex pheromones. Of the two Δ11-desaturases, one identified from Ostrinia nubilalis and Ostrinia scapulalis, Z/EΔ11, forms the Z and E isomers of a double bond at position 11, whereas the other identified from Ostrinia latipennis, LATPG1(=EΔ11), exclusively forms an E double bond at position 11. Since the retroposon(ezi)-fused, non-functional Δ11-desaturase gene, ezi-Δ11α, in the genomes of O. nubilalis and O. furnacalis was previously suggested to be an orthologue of latpg1, we here explored Z/EΔ11 orthologues in the genome of O. latipennis. We newly identified two Δ11-desaturase genes, latpg2 and latpg3, which were orthologous to ezi-Δ11β and Z/EΔ11, respectively. We found that an ezi-like element was integrated in intron 1 of latpg1, and confirmed that only latpg1 was expressed in the pheromone gland of O. latipennis. Thus, at least three Δ11-desaturase genes are present in the genome of O. latipennis, and latpg1 is selectively transcribed in the pheromone gland of this moth. The non-functionality of ezi-inserted desaturase genes in O. nubilalis and O. furnacalis may not be a direct consequence of the insertion of an ezi- or ezi-like element into the gene.

  9. Molecular characterization and evolutionary insights into potential sex-determination genes in the western orchard predatory mite Metaseiulus occidentalis (Chelicerata: Arachnida: Acari: Phytoseiidae).

    PubMed

    Pomerantz, Aaron F; Hoy, Marjorie A; Kawahara, Akito Y

    2015-01-01

    Little is known about the process of sex determination at the molecular level in species belonging to the subclass Acari, a taxon of arachnids that contains mites and ticks. The recent sequencing of the transcriptome and genome of the western orchard predatory mite Metaseiulus occidentalis allows investigation of molecular mechanisms underlying the biological processes of sex determination in this predator of phytophagous pest mites. We identified four doublesex-and-mab-3-related transcription factor (dmrt) genes, one transformer-2 gene, one intersex gene, and two fruitless-like genes in M. occidentalis. Phylogenetic analyses were conducted to infer the molecular relationships to sequences from species of arthropods, including insects, crustaceans, acarines, and a centipede, using available genomic data. Comparative analyses revealed high sequence identity within functional domains and confirmed that the architecture for certain sex-determination genes is conserved in arthropods. This study provides a framework for identifying potential target genes that could be implicated in the process of sex determination in M. occidentalis and provides insight into the conservation and change of the molecular components of sex determination in arthropods.

  10. Gene conversion and DNA sequence polymorphism in the sex-determination gene fog-2 and its paralog ftr-1 in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Rane, Hallie S; Smith, Jessica M; Bergthorsson, Ulfar; Katju, Vaishali

    2010-07-01

    Gene conversion, a form of concerted evolution, bears enormous potential to shape the trajectory of sequence and functional divergence of gene paralogs subsequent to duplication events. fog-2, a sex-determination gene unique to Caenorhabditis elegans and implicated in the origin of hermaphroditism in this species, resulted from the duplication of ftr-1, an upstream gene of unknown function. Synonymous sequence divergence in regions of fog-2 and ftr-1 (excluding recent gene conversion tracts) suggests that the duplication occurred 46 million generations ago. Gene conversion between fog-2 and ftr-1 was previously discovered in experimental fog-2 knockout lines of C. elegans, whereby hermaphroditism was restored in mutant obligately outcrossing male-female populations. We analyzed DNA-sequence variation in fog-2 and ftr-1 within 40 isolates of C. elegans from diverse geographic locations in order to evaluate the contribution of gene conversion to genetic variation in the two gene paralogs. The analysis shows that gene conversion contributes significantly to DNA-sequence diversity in fog-2 and ftr-1 (22% and 34%, respectively) and may have the potential to alter sexual phenotypes in natural populations. A radical amino acid change in a conserved region of the F-box domain of fog-2 was found in natural isolates of C. elegans with significantly lower fecundity. We hypothesize that the lowered fecundity is due to reduced masculinization and less sperm production and that amino acid replacement substitutions and gene conversion in fog-2 may contribute significantly to variation in the degree of inbreeding and outcrossing in natural populations.

  11. Host genetics and viral load in primary HIV-1 infection: clear evidence for gene by sex interactions.

    PubMed

    Li, Xuelin; Price, Matthew A; He, Dongning; Kamali, Anatoli; Karita, Etienne; Lakhi, Shabir; Sanders, Eduard J; Anzala, Omu; Amornkul, Pauli N; Allen, Susan; Hunter, Eric; Kaslow, Richard A; Gilmour, Jill; Tang, Jianming

    2014-09-01

    Research in the past two decades has generated unequivocal evidence that host genetic variations substantially account for the heterogeneous outcomes following human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) infection. In particular, genes encoding human leukocyte antigens (HLA) have various alleles, haplotypes, or specific motifs that can dictate the set-point (a relatively steady state) of plasma viral load (VL), although rapid viral evolution driven by innate and acquired immune responses can obscure the long-term relationships between HLA genotypes and HIV-1-related outcomes. In our analyses of VL data from 521 recent HIV-1 seroconverters enrolled from eastern and southern Africa, HLA-A*03:01 was strongly and persistently associated with low VL in women (frequency = 11.3 %, P < 0.0001) but not in men (frequency = 7.7 %, P = 0.66). This novel sex by HLA interaction (P = 0.003, q = 0.090) did not extend to other frequent HLA class I alleles (n = 34), although HLA-C*18:01 also showed a weak association with low VL in women only (frequency = 9.3 %, P = 0.042, q > 0.50). In a reduced multivariable model, age, sex, geography (clinical sites), previously identified HLA factors (HLA-B*18, B*45, B*53, and B*57), and the interaction term for female sex and HLA-A*03:01 collectively explained 17.0 % of the overall variance in geometric mean VL over a 3-year follow-up period (P < 0.0001). Multiple sensitivity analyses of longitudinal and cross-sectional VL data yielded consistent results. These findings can serve as a proof of principle that the gap of "missing heritability" in quantitative genetics can be partially bridged by a systematic evaluation of sex-specific associations.

  12. Genome editing reveals dmrt1 as an essential male sex-determining gene in Chinese tongue sole (Cynoglossus semilaevis)

    PubMed Central

    Cui, Zhongkai; Liu, Yun; Wang, Wenwen; Wang, Qian; Zhang, Ning; Lin, Fan; Wang, Na; Shao, Changwei; Dong, Zhongdian; Li, Yangzhen; Yang, Yingming; Hu, Mengzhu; Li, Hailong; Gao, Fengtao; Wei, Zhanfei; Meng, Liang; Liu, Yang; Wei, Min; Zhu, Ying; Guo, Hua; Cheng, Christopher H. K.; Schartl, Manfred; Chen, Songlin

    2017-01-01

    Chinese tongue sole is a marine fish with ZW sex determination. Genome sequencing suggested that the Z-linked dmrt1 is a putative male determination gene, but direct genetic evidence is still lacking. Here we show that TALEN of dmrt1 efficiently induced mutations of this gene. The ZZ dmrt1 mutant fish developed ovary-like testis, and the spermatogenesis was disrupted. The female-related genes foxl2 and cyp19a1a were significantly increased in the gonad of the ZZ dmrt1 mutant. Conversely, the male-related genes Sox9a and Amh were significantly decreased. The dmrt1 deficient ZZ fish grew much faster than ZZ male control. Notably, we obtained an intersex ZW fish with a testis on one side and an ovary on the other side. This fish was chimeric for a dmrt1 mutation in the ovary, and wild-type dmrt1 in the testis. Our data provide the first functional evidence that dmrt1 is a male determining gene in tongue sole. PMID:28205594

  13. Genome editing reveals dmrt1 as an essential male sex-determining gene in Chinese tongue sole (Cynoglossus semilaevis).

    PubMed

    Cui, Zhongkai; Liu, Yun; Wang, Wenwen; Wang, Qian; Zhang, Ning; Lin, Fan; Wang, Na; Shao, Changwei; Dong, Zhongdian; Li, Yangzhen; Yang, Yingming; Hu, Mengzhu; Li, Hailong; Gao, Fengtao; Wei, Zhanfei; Meng, Liang; Liu, Yang; Wei, Min; Zhu, Ying; Guo, Hua; Cheng, Christopher H K; Schartl, Manfred; Chen, Songlin

    2017-02-16

    Chinese tongue sole is a marine fish with ZW sex determination. Genome sequencing suggested that the Z-linked dmrt1 is a putative male determination gene, but direct genetic evidence is still lacking. Here we show that TALEN of dmrt1 efficiently induced mutations of this gene. The ZZ dmrt1 mutant fish developed ovary-like testis, and the spermatogenesis was disrupted. The female-related genes foxl2 and cyp19a1a were significantly increased in the gonad of the ZZ dmrt1 mutant. Conversely, the male-related genes Sox9a and Amh were significantly decreased. The dmrt1 deficient ZZ fish grew much faster than ZZ male control. Notably, we obtained an intersex ZW fish with a testis on one side and an ovary on the other side. This fish was chimeric for a dmrt1 mutation in the ovary, and wild-type dmrt1 in the testis. Our data provide the first functional evidence that dmrt1 is a male determining gene in tongue sole.

  14. Hyperexpression of the X chromosome in both sexes results in extensive female bias of X-linked genes in the flour beetle.

    PubMed

    Prince, Eldon G; Kirkland, Donna; Demuth, Jeffery P

    2010-07-12

    A genome's ability to produce two separate sexually dimorphic phenotypes is an intriguing biological mystery. Microarray-based studies of a handful of model systems suggest that much of the mystery can be explained by sex-biased gene expression evolved in response to sexually antagonistic selection. We present the first whole-genome study of sex-biased expression in the red flour beetle, Tribolium castaneum. Tribolium is a model for the largest eukaryotic order, Coleoptera, and we show that in whole-body adults, approximately 20% of the transcriptome is differentially regulated between the sexes. Among T. castaneum, Drosophila melanogaster, and Anopheles gambiae, we identify 416 1:1:1 orthologs with conserved sex-biased expression. Overrepresented functional categories among sex-biased genes are primarily those involved in gamete production and development. The genomic distribution of sex-biased genes in T. castaneum is distinctly nonrandom, with the strongest deficit of male-biased genes on the X chromosome (9 of 793) of any species studied to date. Tribolium also shows a significant enrichment of X-linked female-biased genes (408 of 793). Our analyses suggest that the extensive female bias of Tribolium X chromosome gene expression is due to hyperexpression of X-linked genes in both males and females. We propose that the overexpression of X chromosomes in females is an evolutionary side effect of the need to dosage compensate in males and that mechanisms to reduce female X chromosome gene expression to autosomal levels are sufficient but imperfect.

  15. Prenatal Stress, Fearfulness, and the Epigenome: Exploratory Analysis of Sex Differences in DNA Methylation of the Glucocorticoid Receptor Gene

    PubMed Central

    Ostlund, Brendan D.; Conradt, Elisabeth; Crowell, Sheila E.; Tyrka, Audrey R.; Marsit, Carmen J.; Lester, Barry M.

    2016-01-01

    Exposure to stress in utero is a risk factor for the development of problem behavior in the offspring, though precise pathways are unknown. We examined whether DNA methylation of the glucocorticoid receptor gene, NR3C1, was associated with experiences of stress by an expectant mother and fearfulness in her infant. Mothers reported on prenatal stress and infant temperament when infants were 5 months old (n = 68). Buccal cells for methylation analysis were collected from each infant. Prenatal stress was not related to infant fearfulness or NR3C1 methylation in the sample as a whole. Exploratory sex-specific analysis revealed a trend-level association between prenatal stress and increased methylation of NR3C1 exon 1F for female, but not male, infants. In addition, increased methylation was significantly associated with greater fearfulness for females. Results suggest an experience-dependent pathway to fearfulness for female infants via epigenetic modification of the glucocorticoid receptor gene. Future studies should examine prenatal stress in a comprehensive fashion while considering sex differences in epigenetic processes underlying infant temperament. PMID:27462209

  16. Switching on sex: transcriptional regulation of the testis-determining gene Sry.

    PubMed

    Larney, Christian; Bailey, Timothy L; Koopman, Peter

    2014-06-01

    Mammalian sex determination hinges on the development of ovaries or testes, with testis fate being triggered by the expression of the transcription factor sex-determining region Y (Sry). Reduced or delayed Sry expression impairs testis development, highlighting the importance of its accurate spatiotemporal regulation and implying a potential role for SRY dysregulation in human intersex disorders. Several epigenetic modifiers, transcription factors and kinases are implicated in regulating Sry transcription, but it remains unclear whether or how this farrago of factors acts co-ordinately. Here we review our current understanding of Sry regulation and provide a model that assembles all known regulators into three modules, each converging on a single transcription factor that binds to the Sry promoter. We also discuss potential future avenues for discovering the cis-elements and trans-factors required for Sry regulation.

  17. Ceratitis capitata transformer-2 gene is required to establish and maintain the autoregulation of Cctra, the master gene for female sex determination.

    PubMed

    Salvemini, Marco; Robertson, Mark; Aronson, Benjamin; Atkinson, Peter; Polito, Lino C; Saccone, Giuseppe

    2009-01-01

    In Drosophila melanogaster, transformer-2 (TRA-2) which is a non-sex-specific auxiliary splicing factor, is required to promote female sexual differentiation by interaction with the female-specific TRA. The two proteins positively regulate the splicing of both doublesex (dsx) and fruitless (fru) pre-mRNAs, which in turn regulate phenotypic and behavioural sexual dimorphism. In the Mediterranean fruitfly Ceratitis capitata, the female-specific CcTRA is similarly required not only for Ccdsx splicing, but also to exert a novel autoregulatory function that consists of promoting female-specific splicing of Cctra pre-mRNA. This study reports the isolation and functional analysis of the C. capitata homologue of the Drosophila transformer-2 gene (Cctra-2). Transient RNAi against Cctra-2 during embryonic development causes the full sex reversal of XX flies in adult fertile pseudo-males, as well as changes in the splicing pattern of Cctra, Ccdsx and Ccfruitless (Ccfru). We propose that: 1) Cctra-2, as in Drosophila, is necessary for promoting Ccdsx and putative Ccfru pre-mRNA female-specific splicing and that 2) unlike in Drosophila, Cctra-2 appears to be necessary for establishing female sex determination in early XX embryos and for maintaining the positive feedback regulation of Cctra during development.

  18. Litter and Sex Effects on Maternal Behavior and DNA Methylation of the Nr3c1 Exon17 Promoter Gene in Hippocampus and Cerebellum

    PubMed Central

    Kosten, Therese A; Nielsen, David A

    2014-01-01

    Early life events can alter gene expression through DNA methylation. The methylation status of the exon 17 promoter of the glucocorticoid receptor (Nr3c1 gene) in hippocampus associates with frequency of pup licking. Much of this work was conducted with male rats. Because dams more frequently lick male pups, this may contribute to sex differences in phenotypes through DNA methylation. Modifying litter gender composition (LGC), in which offspring of single-sex litters are compared to mixed-sex litters, alters maternal behavior. Previously, we demonstrated that LGC and sex affected pup licking times as well as anxiety and hippocampal DNA methylation of the Nr3c1 exon 17 promoter gene in adolescence. Now, we expand upon this work by examining effects in cerebellum and measuring mRNA levels. We also re-assessed DNA methylation in hippocampus using pyrosequencing and re-analyzed pup licking with the more commonly used frequency measure. Litters, culled to 8 pups on postnatal day 1 (PN1), were assigned to one of three conditions: all male, (n=10), all female, (n=12), or half of each sex (n=20). Licking was rated on PN4, 7, and 10. On PN35, hippocampal and cerebellar samples were obtained. Single-sex males were licked the least and mixed-sex males, the most. Hippocampal Nr3c1 mRNA levels were lowest in mixed females with no LGC or Sex effects in DNA methylation. Cerebellar DNA methylation levels were lowest in mixed males with no effect on mRNA levels. Maternal pup licking associated with DNA methylation of the Nr3c1 exon 17 promoter gene in cerebellum and with hippocampal mRNA. PMID:24721039

  19. Expression patterns of sex-determination genes in single male and female embryos of two Bactrocera fruit fly species during early development.

    PubMed

    Morrow, J L; Riegler, M; Frommer, M; Shearman, D C A

    2014-12-01

    In tephritids, the sex-determination pathway follows the sex-specific splicing of transformer (tra) mRNA, and the cooperation of tra and transformer-2 (tra-2) to effect the sex-specific splicing of doublesex (dsx), the genetic double-switch responsible for male or female somatic development. The Dominant Male Determiner (M) is the primary signal that controls this pathway. M, as yet uncharacterized, is Y-chromosome linked, expressed in the zygote and directly or indirectly diminishes active TRA protein in male embryos. Here we first demonstrated the high conservation of tra, tra-2 and dsx in two Australian tephritids, Bactrocera tryoni and Bactrocera jarvisi. We then used quantitative reverse transcription PCR on single, sexed embryos to examine expression of the key sex-determination genes during early embryogenesis. Individual embryos were sexed using molecular markers located on the B. jarvisi Y-chromosome that was also introgressed into a B. tryoni line. In B. jarvisi, sex-specific expression of tra transcripts occurred between 3 to 6 h after egg laying, and the dsx isoform was established by 7 h. These milestones were delayed in B. tryoni lines. The results provide a time frame for transcriptomic analyses to identify M and its direct targets, plus information on genes that may be targeted for the development of male-only lines for pest management.

  20. Behavioral and pheromonal phenotypes associated with expression of loss-of-function mutations in the sex-lethal gene of Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Tompkins, L; McRobert, S P

    1995-02-01

    We have shown that female-specific functions of the sex determination gene Sex-lethal (Sxl) regulate sexual behavior and synthesis of the three major sex pheromones that have been identified in normal, sexually mature Drosophilia melanogaster males and virgin females. Diplo-X flies, heterozygous in trans for two partial loss-of-function Sxl mutations, elicit less courtship than normal females and produce large quantities of the inhibitory pheromones that normal males synthesize. In addition, the mutant flies fail to synthesize the female-predominant aphrodisiac pheromone or make very small quantities of this compound.

  1. The rate of meiotic gene conversion varies by sex and age

    PubMed Central

    Halldorsson, Bjarni V.; Hardarson, Marteinn T.; Kehr, Birte; Styrkarsdottir, Unnur; Gylfason, Arnaldur; Thorleifsson, Gudmar; Zink, Florian; Jonasdottir, Adalbjorg; Jonasdottir, Aslaug; Sulem, Patrick; Masson, Gisli; Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur; Helgason, Agnar; Kong, Augustine; Gudbjartsson, Daniel F.; Stefansson, Kari

    2016-01-01

    Meiotic recombination involves a combination of gene conversion and crossover events that along with mutations produce germline genetic diversity. Here, we report the discovery of 3,176 SNP and 61 indel gene conversions. Our estimate of the non-crossover (NCO) gene conversion rate (G) is 7.0 for SNPs and 5.8 for indels per Mb per generation, and the GC bias is 67.6%. For indels we demonstrate a 65.6% preference for the shorter allele. NCO gene conversions from mothers are longer than those from fathers and G is 2.17 times greater in mothers. Notably, G increases with the age of mothers, but not fathers. A disproportionate number of NCO gene conversions in older mothers occur outside double strand break (DSB) regions and in regions with relatively low GC content. This points to age-related changes in the mechanisms of meiotic gene conversions in oocytes. PMID:27643539

  2. Sex-specific patterns and deregulation of endocrine pathways in the gene expression profiles of Bangladeshi adults exposed to arsenic contaminated drinking water

    SciTech Connect

    Muñoz, Alexandra; Chervona, Yana; Hall, Megan; Kluz, Thomas; Gamble, Mary V.; Costa, Max

    2015-05-01

    Arsenic contamination of drinking water occurs globally and is associated with numerous diseases including skin, lung and bladder cancers, and cardiovascular disease. Recent research indicates that arsenic may be an endocrine disruptor. This study was conducted to evaluate the nature of gene expression changes among males and females exposed to arsenic contaminated water in Bangladesh at high and low doses. Twenty-nine (55% male) Bangladeshi adults with water arsenic exposure ranging from 50 to 1000 μg/L were selected from the Folic Acid Creatinine Trial. RNA was extracted from peripheral blood mononuclear cells for gene expression profiling using Affymetrix 1.0 ST arrays. Differentially expressed genes were assessed between high and low exposure groups for males and females separately and findings were validated using quantitative real-time PCR. There were 534 and 645 differentially expressed genes (p < 0.05) in the peripheral blood mononuclear cells of males and females, respectively, when high and low water arsenic exposure groups were compared. Only 43 genes overlapped between the two sexes, with 29 changing in opposite directions. Despite the difference in gene sets both males and females exhibited common biological changes including deregulation of 17β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase enzymes, deregulation of genes downstream of Sp1 (specificity protein 1) transcription factor, and prediction of estrogen receptor alpha as a key hub in cardiovascular networks. Arsenic-exposed adults exhibit sex-specific gene expression profiles that implicate involvement of the endocrine system. Due to arsenic's possible role as an endocrine disruptor, exposure thresholds for arsenic may require different parameters for males and females. - Highlights: • Males and females exhibit unique gene expression changes in response to arsenic. • Only 23 genes are common among the differentially expressed genes for the sexes. • Male and female gene lists exhibit common biological

  3. Novel Insights into 46,XY Disorders of Sex Development due to NR5A1 Gene Mutation.

    PubMed

    Werner, Ralf; Mönig, Isabel; August, Julia; Freiberg, Clemens; Lünstedt, Ralf; Reiz, Benedikt; Wünsch, Lutz; Holterhus, Paul-Martin; Kulle, Alexandra; Döhnert, Ulla; Wudy, Stefan A; Richter-Unruh, Annette; Thorns, Christoph; Hiort, Olaf

    2015-01-01

    The differential diagnosis of 46,XY disorders of sex development (DSD) is based on the distinction between forms of gonadal dysgenesis and disorders of androgen biosynthesis and action. However, clinical and endocrine evaluations are often not conclusive. Here, we describe an adolescent female with hirsutism and hyperandrogenization at puberty. Her karyotype was 46,XY, and clinical investigation demonstrated clitoromegaly, but no uterine remnants were detected. Histology of the gonads revealed a testicular structure with a Sertoli-cell-only pattern. Endocrine evaluation showed hypergonadotropic hypogonadism, and the Sertoli cell markers inhibin B and anti-Müllerian hormone were also low. Several molecular genetic studies were initiated. While analyses of the androgen receptor gene, the SRD5A2 gene and HSD17B3 gene were uninformative, a novel p.L230R mutation was found in the NR5A1 gene. A mutant construct proved a severe dysfunction of this variant in functional analysis after recreation and transfection into HeLa cells. We conclude that the NR5A1 p.L230R mutation most likely leads to a spatial and time-dependent Leydig cell and Sertoli cell dysfunction during development not causing the classical gonadal dysgenesis phenotype. This case demonstrates that the current classification should be updated to encompass the overlapping phenotypes of some genetic conditions within 46,XY DSD.

  4. Molecular cloning and functional characterization of the sex-determination gene doublesex in the sexually dimorphic broad-horned beetle Gnatocerus cornutus (Coleoptera, Tenebrionidae).

    PubMed

    Gotoh, Hiroki; Ishiguro, Mai; Nishikawa, Hideto; Morita, Shinichi; Okada, Kensuke; Miyatake, Takahisa; Yaginuma, Toshinobu; Niimi, Teruyuki

    2016-07-11

    Various types of weapon traits found in insect order Coleoptera are known as outstanding examples of sexually selected exaggerated characters. It is known that the sex determination gene doublesex (dsx) plays a significant role in sex-specific expression of weapon traits in various beetles belonging to the superfamily Scarabaeoidea. Although sex-specific weapon traits have evolved independently in various Coleopteran groups, developmental mechanisms of sex-specific expression have not been studied outside of the Scarabaeoidea. In order to test the hypothesis that dsx-dependent sex-specific expression of weapon traits is a general mechanism among the Coleoptera, we have characterized the dsx in the sexually dimorphic broad-horned beetle Gnatocerus cornutus (Tenebrionidea, Tenebirionidae). By using molecular cloning, we identified five splicing variants of Gnatocerus cornutus dsx (Gcdsx), which are predicted to code four different isoforms. We found one male-specific variant (GcDsx-M), two female-specific variants (GcDsx-FL and GcDsx-FS) and two non-sex-specific variants (correspond to a single isoform, GcDsx-C). Knockdown of all Dsx isoforms resulted in intersex phenotype both in male and female. Also, knockdown of all female-specific isoforms transformed females to intersex phenotype, while did not affect male phenotype. Our results clearly illustrate the important function of Gcdsx in determining sex-specific trait expression in both sexes.

  5. Molecular cloning and functional characterization of the sex-determination gene doublesex in the sexually dimorphic broad-horned beetle Gnatocerus cornutus (Coleoptera, Tenebrionidae)

    PubMed Central

    Gotoh, Hiroki; Ishiguro, Mai; Nishikawa, Hideto; Morita, Shinichi; Okada, Kensuke; Miyatake, Takahisa; Yaginuma, Toshinobu; Niimi, Teruyuki

    2016-01-01

    Various types of weapon traits found in insect order Coleoptera are known as outstanding examples of sexually selected exaggerated characters. It is known that the sex determination gene doublesex (dsx) plays a significant role in sex-specific expression of weapon traits in various beetles belonging to the superfamily Scarabaeoidea. Although sex-specific weapon traits have evolved independently in various Coleopteran groups, developmental mechanisms of sex-specific expression have not been studied outside of the Scarabaeoidea. In order to test the hypothesis that dsx-dependent sex-specific expression of weapon traits is a general mechanism among the Coleoptera, we have characterized the dsx in the sexually dimorphic broad-horned beetle Gnatocerus cornutus (Tenebrionidea, Tenebirionidae). By using molecular cloning, we identified five splicing variants of Gnatocerus cornutus dsx (Gcdsx), which are predicted to code four different isoforms. We found one male-specific variant (GcDsx-M), two female-specific variants (GcDsx-FL and GcDsx-FS) and two non-sex-specific variants (correspond to a single isoform, GcDsx-C). Knockdown of all Dsx isoforms resulted in intersex phenotype both in male and female. Also, knockdown of all female-specific isoforms transformed females to intersex phenotype, while did not affect male phenotype. Our results clearly illustrate the important function of Gcdsx in determining sex-specific trait expression in both sexes. PMID:27404087

  6. Sex Determination from Fragmented and Degenerated DNA by Amplified Product-Length Polymorphism Bidirectional SNP Analysis of Amelogenin and SRY Genes.

    PubMed

    Masuyama, Kotoka; Shojo, Hideki; Nakanishi, Hiroaki; Inokuchi, Shota; Adachi, Noboru

    2017-01-01

    Sex determination is important in archeology and anthropology for the study of past societies, cultures, and human activities. Sex determination is also one of the most important components of individual identification in criminal investigations. We developed a new method of sex determination by detecting a single-nucleotide polymorphism in the amelogenin gene using amplified product-length polymorphisms in combination with sex-determining region Y analysis. We particularly focused on the most common types of postmortem DNA damage in ancient and forensic samples: fragmentation and nucleotide modification resulting from deamination. Amplicon size was designed to be less than 60 bp to make the method more useful for analyzing degraded DNA samples. All DNA samples collected from eight Japanese individuals (four male, four female) were evaluated correctly using our method. The detection limit for accurate sex determination was determined to be 20 pg of DNA. We compared our new method with commercial short tandem repeat analysis kits using DNA samples artificially fragmented by ultraviolet irradiation. Our novel method was the most robust for highly fragmented DNA samples. To deal with allelic dropout resulting from deamination, we adopted "bidirectional analysis," which analyzed samples from both sense and antisense strands. This new method was applied to 14 Jomon individuals (3500-year-old bone samples) whose sex had been identified morphologically. We could correctly identify the sex of 11 out of 14 individuals. These results show that our method is reliable for the sex determination of highly degenerated samples.

  7. Sex Determination from Fragmented and Degenerated DNA by Amplified Product-Length Polymorphism Bidirectional SNP Analysis of Amelogenin and SRY Genes

    PubMed Central

    Masuyama, Kotoka; Shojo, Hideki; Nakanishi, Hiroaki; Inokuchi, Shota; Adachi, Noboru

    2017-01-01

    Sex determination is important in archeology and anthropology for the study of past societies, cultures, and human activities. Sex determination is also one of the most important components of individual identification in criminal investigations. We developed a new method of sex determination by detecting a single-nucleotide polymorphism in the amelogenin gene using amplified product-length polymorphisms in combination with sex-determining region Y analysis. We particularly focused on the most common types of postmortem DNA damage in ancient and forensic samples: fragmentation and nucleotide modification resulting from deamination. Amplicon size was designed to be less than 60 bp to make the method more useful for analyzing degraded DNA samples. All DNA samples collected from eight Japanese individuals (four male, four female) were evaluated correctly using our method. The detection limit for accurate sex determination was determined to be 20 pg of DNA. We compared our new method with commercial short tandem repeat analysis kits using DNA samples artificially fragmented by ultraviolet irradiation. Our novel method was the most robust for highly fragmented DNA samples. To deal with allelic dropout resulting from deamination, we adopted “bidirectional analysis,” which analyzed samples from both sense and antisense strands. This new method was applied to 14 Jomon individuals (3500-year-old bone samples) whose sex had been identified morphologically. We could correctly identify the sex of 11 out of 14 individuals. These results show that our method is reliable for the sex determination of highly degenerated samples. PMID:28052096

  8. Sex-specific gene expression during asexual development of Neurospora crassa

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Zheng; Kin, Koryu; Lopez-Giraldez, Francesc; Johannesson, Hanna; Townsend, Jeffrey P.

    2012-01-01

    The impact of loci that determine sexual identity upon the asexual, dominant stage of fungal life history has been well studied. To investigate their impact, expression differences between strains of different mating type during asexual development were assayed, with RNA sampled from otherwise largely isogenic mat A and mat a strains of Neurospora crassaat early, middle, and late clonal stages of development. We observed significant differences in overall gene expression between mating types across clonal development, especially at late development stages. The expression levels of mating-type genes and pheromone genes were assayed by reverse transcription and quantitative PCR, revealing expression of pheromone and receptor genes instrains of both mating types in all development stages, and revealing that mating type (mat) genes were increasingly expressed over the course of asexual development. Interestingly, among differentially expressed genes, the mat A genotype more frequently exhibited a higher expression level than mat a, and demonstrated greater transcriptional regulatory dynamism. Significant up-regulation of expression was observed for many late light-responsive genes at late asexual development stages. Further investigation of the impact of light and the roles of light response genes in asexual development of both mating types are warranted. PMID:22626843

  9. Allelic variant in the anti-Müllerian hormone gene leads to autosomal and temperature-dependent sex reversal in a selected Nile tilapia line.

    PubMed

    Wessels, Stephan; Sharifi, Reza Ahmad; Luehmann, Liane Magdalena; Rueangsri, Sawichaya; Krause, Ina; Pach, Sabrina; Hoerstgen-Schwark, Gabriele; Knorr, Christoph

    2014-01-01

    Owing to the demand for sustainable sex-control protocols in aquaculture, research in tilapia sex determination is gaining momentum. The mutual influence of environmental and genetic factors hampers disentangling the complex sex determination mechanism in Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus). Previous linkage analyses have demonstrated quantitative trait loci for the phenotypic sex on linkage groups 1, 3, and 23. Quantitative trait loci for temperature-dependent sex reversal similarly reside on linkage group 23. The anti-Müllerian hormone gene (amh), located in this genomic region, is important for sexual fate in higher vertebrates, and shows sexually dimorphic expression in Nile tilapia. Therefore this study aimed at detecting allelic variants and marker-sex associations in the amh gene. Sequencing identified six allelic variants. A significant effect on the phenotypic sex for SNP ss831884014 (p<0.0017) was found by stepwise logistic regression. The remaining variants were not significantly associated. Functional annotation of SNP ss831884014 revealed a non-synonymous amino acid substitution in the amh protein. Consequently, a fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET) based genotyping assay was developed and validated with a representative sample of fish. A logistic linear model confirmed a highly significant effect of the treatment and genotype on the phenotypic sex, but not for the interaction term (treatment: p<0.0001; genotype: p<0.0025). An additive genetic model proved a linear allele substitution effect of 12% in individuals from controls and groups treated at high temperature, respectively. Moreover, the effect of the genotype on the male proportion was significantly higher in groups treated at high temperature, giving 31% more males on average of the three genotypes. In addition, the groups treated at high temperature showed a positive dominance deviation (+11.4% males). In summary, marker-assisted selection for amh variant ss831884014 seems to be

  10. Polymorphisms in genes involved in sex hormone metabolism, estrogen plus progestin hormone therapy use, and risk of postmenopausal breast cancer

    PubMed Central

    Diergaarde, Brenda; Potter, John D.; Jupe, Eldon R.; Manjeshwar, Sharmila; Shimasaki, Craig D.; Pugh, Thomas W.; DeFreese, Daniele C.; Gramling, Bobby A.; Evans, Ilonka; White, Emily

    2009-01-01

    Hormone therapy, estrogen plus progestin (E+P) particularly, is associated with increased risk of breast cancer. Functionally relevant polymorphisms in genes involved in sex hormone metabolism may alter exposure to exogenous sex hormones and affect risk of postmenopausal breast cancer. We evaluated associations of common polymorphisms in genes involved in estrogen and/or progesterone metabolism, E+P use, and their interactions with breast cancer risk in a case-control study of postmenopausal women (324 cases; 651 controls) nested within the VITAL cohort. None of the polymorphisms studied was, by itself, statistically significantly associated with breast cancer risk. E+P use was significantly associated with increased breast cancer risk (≥10 years versus never, odds ratio: 1.9; 95% confidence interval: 1.3–2.8; Ptrend: 0.0002). Statistically significant interactions between CYP1A1 Ile462Val (Pinteraction: 0.04), CYP1A1 MspI (Pinteraction: 0.003), CYP1B1 Val432Leu (Pinteraction: 0.007), CYP1B1 Asn453Ser (Pinteraction: 0.04) and PGR Val660Leu (Pinteraction: 0.01), and E+P use were observed. The increased risk of breast cancer associated with E+P use was greater among women with at least one rare allele of the CYP1A1 Ile462Val, CYP1A1 MspI, CYP1B1 Asn453Ser and PGR Val660Leu polymorphisms than among women homozygous for the common allele of these polymorphisms. Risk of breast cancer increased little with increasing years of E+P use among women with at least one CYP1B1 Val432 allele; a large increase in risk was seen among women homozygous for CYP1B1 Leu432. Our results support the hypothesis that specific polymorphisms in genes involved in sex hormone metabolism may modify the effect of E+P use on breast cancer risk. PMID:18628428

  11. Interleukin-12B gene polymorphism frequencies in Egyptians and sex-related susceptibility to hepatitis C infection.

    PubMed

    Youssef, Samar Samir; Abd El Aal, Asmaa Mostafa; Nasr, Amal Soliman; el Zanaty, Taher; Seif, Sameh Mohamed

    2013-08-01

    Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is a major health problem worldwide. Egypt is the country with the highest HCV infection epidemic in the world. Interleukin (IL)-12 is a cytokine that has been shown to have a potent role as an antiviral cytokine. IL-12 is a heterodimer of the polypeptides p35 and p40. IL-12 B, the gene encoding IL-12 p40, is polymorphic, and a functional single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) of the 3'-untranslated region at position rs3212227 was associated with apparent resistance to HCV. The genotype distribution of this polymorphism differs by race. This study is sought to identify the genotype distribution of the IL-12 SNP rs3212227 polymorphism in Egyptians and to assess its role in susceptibility to chronic HCV infection alone or in a sex-dependent way. The study included 238 subjects: 100 healthy controls and 138 patients with HCV infection. The IL-12 SNP rs3212227 was genotyped by the polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism method (PCR-RFLP). Results showed a genotype frequency of 46%, 39%, and 15% for AA, AC, and CC IL-12 genotypes, respectively. No significant result (P=0.5) was shown in the differential distribution of the IL-12 SNP genotypes between controls and patients with HCV infection. Nonetheless, this difference in the IL-12 genotype distribution was significant (0.005) when it was stratified according to sex; moreover, the C allele distribution in men and women differed with a statistically high significance (P=0.0001) in controls versus HCV patients. In conclusion, the IL-12 SNP rs3212227 polymorphism confers a susceptibility to HCV infection in a sex-dependent way in Egyptians.

  12. Seasonal changes and sexual dimorphism in gene expression of StAR protein, steroidogenic enzymes and sex hormone receptors in the frog brain.

    PubMed

    Santillo, Alessandra; Falvo, Sara; Di Fiore, Maria Maddalena; Chieffi Baccari, Gabriella

    2016-12-24

    The brain of amphibians contains all the key enzymes of steroidogenesis and has a high steroidogenic activity. In seasonally-breeding amphibian species brain steroid levels fluctuate synchronously with the reproductive cycle. Here we report a study of gene expression of StAR protein, key steroidogenic enzymes and sex hormone receptors in the telencephalon (T) and diencephalon-mesencephalon (D-M) of male and female reproductive and post-reproductive Pelophylax esculentus, a seasonally breeding anuran amphibian. Significant differences in gene expression were observed between (a) the reproductive and post-reproductive phase, (b) the two brain regions and (c) male and female frogs. During the reproductive phase, star gene expression increased in the male (both T and D-M) but not in the female brain. Seasonal fluctuations in expression levels of hsd3b1, hsd17b1, srd5a1 and cyp19a1 genes for neurosteroidogenic enzymes occurred in D-M region of both sexes, with the higher levels in reproductive period. Moreover, the D-M region generally showed higher levels of gene expression than the T region in both sexes. Gene expression was higher in females than males for most genes, suggesting higher neurosteroid production in female brain. Seasonal and sex-linked changes were also observed in gene expression for androgen (ar) and estrogen (esr1, esr2) receptors, with the males showing the highest ar levels in reproductive phase and the highest esr1 and esr2 levels in post-reproductive phase; in contrast, females showed the maximum expression for all three genes in reproductive phase. The results are the first evidence for seasonal changes and sexual dimorphism of gene expression of the neurosteroidogenic pathway in amphibians.

  13. Brain derived neurotrophic factor gene (BDNF) and personality traits: the modifying effect of season of birth and sex.

    PubMed

    Kazantseva, A; Gaysina, D; Kutlumbetova, Yu; Kanzafarova, R; Malykh, S; Lobaskova, M; Khusnutdinova, E

    2015-01-02

    Personality traits are complex phenotypes influenced by interactions of multiple genetic variants of small effect and environmental factors. It has been suggested that the brain derived neurotrophic factor gene (BDNF) is involved in personality traits. Season of birth (SOB) has also been shown to affect personality traits due to its influences on brain development during prenatal and early postnatal periods. The present study aimed to investigate the effects of BDNF on personality traits; and the modifying effects of SOB and sex on associations between BDNF and personality traits. A sample of 1018 young adults (68% women; age range 17-25years) of Caucasian origin from the Russian Federation was assessed on personality traits (Novelty Seeking, Harm Avoidance, Reward Dependence, Persistence, Self-directedness, Cooperativeness, Self-transcendence) with the Temperament and Character Inventory-125 (TCI-125). Associations between personality traits and 12 BDNF SNPs were tested using linear regression models. The present study demonstrated the effect of rs11030102 on Persistence in females only (PFDR=0.043; r(2)=1.3%). There were significant interaction effects between Val66Met (rs6265) and SOB (PFDR=0.048, r(2)=1.4%), and between rs2030323 and SOB (PFDR=0.042, r(2)=1.3%), on Harm Avoidance. Our findings provide evidence for the modifying effect of SOB on the association between BDNF and Harm Avoidance, and for the modifying effect of sex on the association between BDNF and Persistence.

  14. Comparative Analysis of Transcriptomes among Bombyx mori Strains and Sexes Reveals the Genes Regulating Melanic Morph and the Related Phenotypes

    PubMed Central

    He, Songzhen; Tong, Xiaoling; Lu, Kunpeng; Lu, Yaru; Luo, Jiangwen; Yang, Wenhao; Chen, Min; Han, Min-jin; Hu, Hai; Lu, Cheng; Dai, Fangyin

    2016-01-01

    As a source of insect polymorphism, melanism plays an important role in ecological adaption and usually endows advantageous phenotypic-effects on insects. However, due to the mechanistic diversity, there are knowledge gaps in the molecular mechanisms underlying melanism and the related phenotypes. In silk moths, a recessive melanic mutant (sex-controlled melanism, sml) strain exhibits extended adult longevity. We took a transcriptome approach to perform a comparative analysis between this sml strain and a wild-type strain (Dazao). Our analysis resulted in the identification of 59 unique differentially expressed genes in the melanic mutant. Two key genes (laccase2 and yellow) involved in melanin formation were significantly up-regulated in melanic individuals. The laccase2 B-type isoform (BGIBMGA006746) was found to likely participate in the silkworm cuticular melanism process at late pupal stage. Moreover, we discovered 22 cuticular protein encoding genes with the possible function in melanin transport and/or maintenance. Based on our findings, we presume that the longer survival of the melanic sml male moths might be associated with the enhanced antioxidant defense systems and a reduction in the insulin/IGF-1 signaling pathway (IIS). These findings will facilitate the understanding of the molecular basis underlying melanism and the derived phenotypic-effects. PMID:27153103

  15. Diagnostic yield of targeted gene panel sequencing to identify the genetic etiology of disorders of sex development.

    PubMed

    Kim, Ja Hye; Kang, Eungu; Heo, Sun Hee; Kim, Gu-Hwan; Jang, Ja-Hyun; Cho, Eun-Hae; Lee, Beom Hee; Yoo, Han-Wook; Choi, Jin-Ho

    2017-03-15

    Disorders of sex development (DSD) vary phenotypically and are caused by a number of genetic etiologies. This study investigated the genetic etiology of DSD patients using targeted exome sequencing of 67 known DSD-associated genes in humans. This study included 37 patients with 46, XY DSD and seven patients with 46, XX DSD. We identified known pathogenic mutations or deletion in nine (20.5%) patients in the AR, CYP17A1, SRD5A1, and DMRT1/2 genes. Novel variants were identified in nine patients (20.5%) in the AR, ATRX, CYP17A1, CHD7, MAP3K1, NR5A1, and WWOX genes. Among them, four patients harbored pathogenic or likely pathogenic variants, while the remaining five patients (11.4%) had variants of uncertain significance. We were able to make a genetic diagnosis in 29.5% of patients with pathogenic or likely pathogenic mutations. Targeted exome sequencing is an efficient tool to improve the diagnostic yield of DSD, despite its phenotypic and genetic heterogeneity.

  16. A set-based association test identifies sex-specific gene sets associated with type 2 diabetes

    PubMed Central

    He, Tao; Zhong, Ping-Shou; Cui, Yuehua

    2014-01-01

    Single variant analysis in genome-wide association studies (GWAS) has been proven to be successful in identifying thousands of genetic variants associated with hundreds of complex diseases. However, these identified variants only explain a small fraction of inheritable variability in many diseases, suggesting that other resources, such as multilevel genetic variations, may contribute to disease susceptibility. In this work, we proposed to combine genetic variants that belong to a gene set, such as at gene- and pathway-level to form an integrated signal aimed to identify major players that function in a coordinated manner conferring disease risk. The integrated analysis provides novel insight into disease etiology while individual signals could be easily missed by single variant analysis. We applied our approach to a genome-wide association study of type 2 diabetes (T2D) with male and female data analyzed separately. Novel sex-specific genes and pathways were identified to increase the risk of T2D. We also demonstrated the performance of signal integration through simulation studies. PMID:25429300

  17. Sequenced Alleles of the Caenorhabditis Elegans Sex-Determining Gene Her-1 Include a Novel Class of Conditional Promoter Mutations

    PubMed Central

    Perry, M. D.; Trent, C.; Robertson, B.; Chamblin, C.; Wood, W. B.

    1994-01-01

    In the control of Caenorhabditis elegans sex determination, the her-1 gene must normally be activated to allow male development of XO animals and deactivated to allow hermaphrodite development of XX animals. The gene is regulated at the transcriptional level and has two nested male-specific transcripts. The larger of these encodes a small, novel, cysteine-rich protein responsible for masculinizing activity. Of the 32 extant mutant alleles, 30 cause partial or complete loss of masculinizing function (lf), while 2 are gain-of-function (gf) alleles resulting in abnormal masculinization of XX animals. We have identified the DNA sequence changes in each of these 32 alleles. Most affect the protein coding functions of the gene, but six are in the promoter region, including the two gf mutations. These two mutations may define a binding site for negative regulators of her-1. Three of the four remaining promoter mutations are single base changes that cause, surprisingly, temperature-sensitive loss of her-1 function. Such conditional promoter mutations have previously not been found among either prokaryotic or eukaryotic mutants analyzed at the molecular level. PMID:7828816

  18. Divergent Expression Regulation of Gonad Development Genes in Medaka Shows Incomplete Conservation of the Downstream Regulatory Network of Vertebrate Sex Determination

    PubMed Central

    Herpin, Amaury; Adolfi, Mateus C.; Nicol, Barbara; Hinzmann, Maria; Schmidt, Cornelia; Klughammer, Johanna; Engel, Mareen; Tanaka, Minoru; Guiguen, Yann; Schartl, Manfred

    2013-01-01

    Genetic control of male or female gonad development displays between different groups of organisms a remarkable diversity of “master sex-determining genes” at the top of the genetic hierarchies, whereas downstream components surprisingly appear to be evolutionarily more conserved. Without much further studies, conservation of sequence has been equalized to conservation of function. We have used the medaka fish to investigate the generality of this paradigm. In medaka, the master male sex-determining gene is dmrt1bY, a highly conserved downstream regulator of sex determination in vertebrates. To understand its function in orchestrating the complex gene regulatory network, we have identified targets genes and regulated pathways of Dmrt1bY. Monitoring gene expression and interactions by transgenic fluorescent reporter fish lines, in vivo tissue-chromatin immunoprecipitation and in vitro gene regulation assays revealed concordance but also major discrepancies between mammals and medaka, notably amongst spatial, temporal expression patterns and regulations of the canonical Hedgehog and R-spondin/Wnt/Follistatin signaling pathways. Examination of Foxl2 protein distribution in the medaka ovary defined a new subpopulation of theca cells, where ovarian-type aromatase transcriptional regulation appears to be independent of Foxl2. In summary, these data show that the regulation of the downstream regulatory network of sex determination is less conserved than previously thought. PMID:23883523

  19. A sex-linked Ace gene, not linked to insensitive acetylcholinesterase-mediated insecticide resistance in Culex pipiens.

    PubMed

    Malcolm, C A; Bourguet, D; Ascolillo, A; Rooker, S J; Garvey, C F; Hall, L M; Pasteur, N; Raymond, M

    1998-05-01

    An acetylcholinesterase (AChE) gene, Ace.x, showing 93% identity of deduced amino acid sequence to Anopheles stephensi Ace has been cloned from a Culex pipiens strain homozygous for insensitive AChE (iAChE) mediated insecticide resistance. DNA sequence of genomic DNA clones identified exons 2-5. RFLP of six clones indicated four possible alleles. Linkage analysis located Ace.x to chromosome I, less than 0.8 centimorgans from the sex locus, whereas the locus conferring resistance was 2.0 centimorgans from plum-eye on chromosome II. Ace.1 coding for AChE1, which is associated with resistance, is therefore autosomal. We propose that Ace.x is the recently postulated Ace.2 coding for the biochemically distinct AChE2, which is not associated with resistance.

  20. A PCR-based sex determination method for possible application in caprine gender selection by simultaneous amplification of the Sry and Aml-X genes.

    PubMed

    Phua, Alice Choon Yen; Abdullah, Ramli Bin; Mohamed, Zulqarnain

    2003-08-01

    Sex determination of livestock is performed to achieve the objectives of livestock breeding programmes. Techniques for sex determination have evolved from karyotyping to detecting Y-specific antigens and recently to the polymerase chain reaction (PCR), which appears to be the most sensitive, accurate, rapid and reliable method to date. In this study, a PCR-based sex determination method for potential application in goat breeding programmes was developed. Primers were designed to amplify a portion of the X amelogenin gene (Aml-X) on the X chromosome to give a 300 bp product and Sry gene on the Y chromosome to give a 116 bp product. PCR optimization was performed using DNA template extracted from a whole blood sample of Jermasia goats (German Fawn x Katjang) of both sexes. It was possible to identify the sex chromosomes by amplifying both male- and female-specific genes simultaneously in a duplex reaction with males yielding two bands and females yielding one band. The Aml-X primer set, which served as an internal control primer, did not interfere with amplification of the Y-specific sequence even when a low amount of DNA (1 ng) was used. The duplex reaction subjected to a blind test showed 100% (14/14) concordance, proving its accuracy and reliability. The primer sets used were found to be highly specific and were suitable for gender selection of goats.

  1. Positive Selection of Deleterious Alleles through Interaction with a Sex-Ratio Suppressor Gene in African Buffalo: A Plausible New Mechanism for a High Frequency Anomaly

    PubMed Central

    van Hooft, Pim; Greyling, Ben J.; Getz, Wayne M.; van Helden, Paul D.; Zwaan, Bas J.; Bastos, Armanda D. S.

    2014-01-01

    Although generally rare, deleterious alleles can become common through genetic drift, hitchhiking or reductions in selective constraints. Here we present a possible new mechanism that explains the attainment of high frequencies of deleterious alleles in the African buffalo (Syncerus caffer) population of Kruger National Park, through positive selection of these alleles that is ultimately driven by a sex-ratio suppressor. We have previously shown that one in four Kruger buffalo has a Y-chromosome profile that, despite being associated with low body condition, appears to impart a relative reproductive advantage, and which is stably maintained through a sex-ratio suppressor. Apparently, this sex-ratio suppressor prevents fertility reduction that generally accompanies sex-ratio distortion. We hypothesize that this body-condition-associated reproductive advantage increases the fitness of alleles that negatively affect male body condition, causing genome-wide positive selection of these alleles. To investigate this we genotyped 459 buffalo using 17 autosomal microsatellites. By correlating heterozygosity with body condition (heterozygosity-fitness correlations), we found that most microsatellites were associated with one of two gene types: one with elevated frequencies of deleterious alleles that have a negative effect on body condition, irrespective of sex; the other with elevated frequencies of sexually antagonistic alleles that are negative for male body condition but positive for female body condition. Positive selection and a direct association with a Y-chromosomal sex-ratio suppressor are indicated, respectively, by allele clines and by relatively high numbers of homozygous deleterious alleles among sex-ratio suppressor carriers. This study, which employs novel statistical techniques to analyse heterozygosity-fitness correlations, is the first to demonstrate the abundance of sexually-antagonistic genes in a natural mammal population. It also has important

  2. Positive selection of deleterious alleles through interaction with a sex-ratio suppressor gene in African Buffalo: a plausible new mechanism for a high frequency anomaly.

    PubMed

    van Hooft, Pim; Greyling, Ben J; Getz, Wayne M; van Helden, Paul D; Zwaan, Bas J; Bastos, Armanda D S

    2014-01-01

    Although generally rare, deleterious alleles can become common through genetic drift, hitchhiking or reductions in selective constraints. Here we present a possible new mechanism that explains the attainment of high frequencies of deleterious alleles in the African buffalo (Syncerus caffer) population of Kruger National Park, through positive selection of these alleles that is ultimately driven by a sex-ratio suppressor. We have previously shown that one in four Kruger buffalo has a Y-chromosome profile that, despite being associated with low body condition, appears to impart a relative reproductive advantage, and which is stably maintained through a sex-ratio suppressor. Apparently, this sex-ratio suppressor prevents fertility reduction that generally accompanies sex-ratio distortion. We hypothesize that this body-condition-associated reproductive advantage increases the fitness of alleles that negatively affect male body condition, causing genome-wide positive selection of these alleles. To investigate this we genotyped 459 buffalo using 17 autosomal microsatellites. By correlating heterozygosity with body condition (heterozygosity-fitness correlations), we found that most microsatellites were associated with one of two gene types: one with elevated frequencies of deleterious alleles that have a negative effect on body condition, irrespective of sex; the other with elevated frequencies of sexually antagonistic alleles that are negative for male body condition but positive for female body condition. Positive selection and a direct association with a Y-chromosomal sex-ratio suppressor are indicated, respectively, by allele clines and by relatively high numbers of homozygous deleterious alleles among sex-ratio suppressor carriers. This study, which employs novel statistical techniques to analyse heterozygosity-fitness correlations, is the first to demonstrate the abundance of sexually-antagonistic genes in a natural mammal population. It also has important

  3. Physical activity and sex modulate obesity risk linked to 3111T/C gene variant of the CLOCK gene in an elderly population: the SUN Project.

    PubMed

    Galbete, Cecilia; Contreras, Rafael; Martínez, J Alfredo; Martínez-González, Miguel Ángel; Guillén-Grima, Francisco; Marti, Amelia

    2012-12-01

    Genetic factors may interact with physical activity levels to modify obesity risk. Our aim was to explore the influence of rs1801260 single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) (3111T/C) of CLOCK gene on obesity risk, and to examine its potential interaction with lifestyle factors in an elderly population within the SUN ("Seguimiento Universidad de Navarra") Project. Subjects (n = 903, aged 69 ± 6 yrs) were recruited from the SUN Project. DNA was obtained from saliva, whereas lifestyle and dietary data were collected by validated self-report questionnaires. Genotype was assessed by reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) plus allele discrimination. A significant interaction was observed between the 3111T/C SNP of CLOCK gene and sex for overweight/obesity risk (p for sex × CLOCK interaction <.001). Our results showed that women carrying the C allele of CLOCK gene had a marginally significant lower risk of overweight/obesity compared with noncarrier-TT-subjects (odds ratio [OR]: .61, 95% confidence interval [CI]: .36-1.04; p = .069). Moreover, this association of the C allele with a decreased overweight/obesity risk might be enhanced in those women with a high physical activity level. Women practicing more than 16.8 metabolic equivalent tasks (hours per week) had a significantly lower overweight/obesity risk (OR: .36, 95% CI: .17-.79; p = .011). Furthermore, a significant interaction between the 3111T/C gene variant and physical activity (PA) for overweight/obesity risk was observed but only in women (p for PA × CLOCK interaction <.050). In conclusion, it appears that physical activity levels may act by modifying the association of the 3111T/C SNP (rs1801260) of the CLOCK gene with overweight/obesity risk in elderly women in the SUN Project.

  4. Localization of the human sex hormone-binding globulin gene (SHBG) to the short arm of chromosome 17 (17p12----p13).

    PubMed

    Bérubé, D; Séralini, G E; Gagné, R; Hammond, G L

    1990-01-01

    Human sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG) is a plasma steroid transport protein which is known to be encoded by an autosomal gene. We have hybridized two separate cDNA probes, corresponding to the 5' and 3' portions of the coding sequence for SHBG, to human metaphase chromosomes in situ. In this way, the SHBG gene has been localized to the p12----p13 bands of chromosome 17.

  5. The sex-determining factors SRY and SOX9 regulate similar target genes and promote testis cord formation during testicular differentiation.

    PubMed

    Li, Yunmin; Zheng, Ming; Lau, Yun-Fai Chris

    2014-08-07

    Male sex determination is mediated sequentially by sex-determining region Y (SRY) and related SRY-box 9 (SOX9) transcription factors. To understand the gene regulatory hierarchy for SRY and SOX9, a series of chromatin immunoprecipitation and whole-genome promoter tiling microarray (ChIP-Chip) experiments were conducted with mouse gonadal cells at the time of sex determination. SRY and SOX9 bind to the promoters of many common targets involved in testis differentiation and regulate their expression in Sertoli cells. SRY binds to various ovarian differentiation genes and represses their activation through WNT/β-catenin signaling. Sertoli cell-Sertoli cell junction signaling, important for testis cord formation, is the top canonical pathway among the SRY and SOX9 targets. Hence, SRY determines Sertoli cell fate by repressing ovarian and activating testicular differentiation genes, promotes early Sertoli cells to form testis cord, and then passes on its functions to SOX9, which regulates common targets and activates its own gene regulatory program, beyond SRY actions, in sex determination.

  6. A rearrangement of the Z chromosome topology influences the sex-linked gene display in the European corn borer, Ostrinia nubilalis

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The sex determination system of Lepidoptera is comprised of heterogametic females (ZW) and homogametic males (ZZ), where voltinism (Volt) and the male pheromone response traits (Resp) are controlled by genes housed on the Z-chromosome. Volt and Resp determine traits that lead to ecotype differentia...

  7. Sex-biased gene flow in African Americans but not in American Caucasians.

    PubMed

    Gonçalves, V F; Prosdocimi, F; Santos, L S; Ortega, J M; Pena, S D J

    2007-05-09

    We have previously shown evidence of strong sex-biased genetic blending in the founding and ongoing history of the Brazilian population, with the African and Amerindian contribution being highest from maternal lineages (as measured by mitochondrial DNA) and the European contribution foremost from paternal lineages (estimated from Y-chromosome haplogroups). The same phenomenon has been observed in several other Latin American countries, suggesting that it might constitute a universal characteristic of the Iberian colonization of the Americas. However, it has also recently been detected in the Black population of the United States. We thus wondered if the same could be observed in American Caucasians. To answer that question, we retrieved 1387 hypervariable I Caucasian mitochondrial DNA sequences from the FBI population database and established their haplogroups and continental geographical sources. In sharp contrast with the situation of the Caucasian population of Latin American countries, only 3.1% of the American Caucasian sequences had African and/or Amerindian origin. To explain this discrepancy we propose that the finding of elevated genomic contributions from European males and Amerindian or African females depends not only on the occurrence of directional mating, but also on the "racial" categorization of the children born from these relations. In this respect, social practices in Latin America and in the United States diverge considerably; in the former socially significant "races" are normally designated according to physical appearance, while in the latter descent appears to be the most important factor.

  8. Identification of mediator complex 26 (Crsp7) gametologs on platypus X1 and Y5 sex chromosomes: a candidate testis-determining gene in monotremes?

    PubMed

    Tsend-Ayush, Enkhjargal; Kortschak, R Daniel; Bernard, Pascal; Lim, Shu Ly; Ryan, Janelle; Rosenkranz, Ruben; Borodina, Tatiana; Dohm, Juliane C; Himmelbauer, Heinz; Harley, Vincent R; Grützner, Frank

    2012-01-01

    The basal lineage of monotremes features an extraordinarily complex sex chromosome system which has provided novel insights into the evolution of mammalian sex chromosomes. Recently, sequence information from autosomes, X chromosomes, and XY-shared pseudoautosomal regions has become available. However, no gene has so far been described on any of the Y chromosome-specific regions. We analyzed sequences derived from Y-specific BAC clones to identify genes with potentially male-specific function. Here, we report the identification and characterization of the mediator complex protein gametologs on platypus Y5 (Crspy). We also identified the X-chromosomal copy which unexpectedly maps to X1 (Crspx). Sequence comparison shows extensive divergence between the X and Y copy, but we found no significant positive selection on either gametolog. Expression analysis shows widespread expression of Crspx. Crspy is expressed exclusively in males with particularly strong expression in testis and kidney. Reporter gene assays to investigate whether Crspx/y can act on the recently discovered mouse Sox9 testis-specific enhancer element did reveal a modest effect together with mouse Sox9 + Sf1, but showed overall no significant upregulation of the reporter gene. This is the first report of a differentiated functional male-specific gene on platypus Y chromosomes, providing new insights into sex chromosome evolution and a candidate gene for male-specific function in monotremes.

  9. Variation in extracellular matrix genes is associated with weight regain after weight loss in a sex-specific manner.

    PubMed

    Roumans, Nadia J T; Vink, Roel G; Gielen, Marij; Zeegers, Maurice P; Holst, Claus; Wang, Ping; Astrup, Arne; Saris, Wim H; Valsesia, Armand; Hager, Jörg; van Baak, Marleen A; Mariman, Edwin C M

    2015-11-01

    The extracellular matrix (ECM) of adipocytes is important for body weight regulation. Here, we investigated whether genetic variation in ECM-related genes is associated with weight regain among participants of the European DiOGenes study. Overweight and obese subjects (n = 469, 310 females, 159 males) were on an 8-week low-calorie diet with a 6-month follow-up. Body weight was measured before and after the diet, and after follow-up. Weight maintenance scores (WMS, regained weight as percentage of lost weight) were calculated based on the weight data. Genotype data were retrieved for 2903 SNPs corresponding to 124 ECM-related genes. Regression analyses provided us with six significant SNPs associated with the WMS in males: 3 SNPs in the POSTN gene and a SNP in the LAMB1, COL23A1, and FBLN5 genes. For females, 1 SNP was found in the FN1 gene. The risk of weight regain was increased by: the C/C genotype for POSTN in a co-dominant model (OR 8.25, 95 % CI 2.85-23.88) and the T/C-C/C genotype in a dominant model (OR 4.88, 95 % CI 2.35-10.16); the A/A genotype for LAMB1 both in a co-dominant model (OR 18.43, 95 % CI 2.35-144.63) and in a recessive model (OR 16.36, 95 % CI 2.14-124.9); the G/A genotype for COL23A1 in a co-dominant model (OR 3.94, 95 % CI 1.28-12.10), or the A-allele in a dominant model (OR 2.86, 95 % CI 1.10-7.49); the A/A genotype for FBLN5 in a co-dominant model (OR 13.00, 95 % CI 1.61-104.81); and the A/A genotype for FN1 in a recessive model (OR 2.81, 95 % CI 1.40-5.63). Concluding, variants of ECM genes are associated with weight regain after weight loss in a sex-specific manner.

  10. Timing sexual differentiation: full functional sex reversal achieved through silencing of a single insulin-like gene in the prawn, Macrobrachium rosenbergii.

    PubMed

    Ventura, Tomer; Manor, Rivka; Aflalo, Eliahu D; Weil, Simy; Rosen, Ohad; Sagi, Amir

    2012-03-01

    In Crustacea, an early evolutionary group (∼50 000 species) inhabiting most ecological niches, sex differentiation is regulated by a male-specific androgenic gland (AG). The identification of AG-specific insulin-like factors (IAGs) and genomic sex markers offers an opportunity for a deeper understanding of the sexual differentiation mechanism in crustaceans and other arthropods. Here, we report, to our knowledge, the first full and functional sex reversal of male freshwater prawns (Macrobrachium rosenbergii) through the silencing of a single IAG-encoding gene. These "neofemales" produced all-male progeny, as proven by sex-specific genomic markers. This finding offers an insight regarding the biology and evolution of sex differentiation regulation, with a novel perspective for the evolution of insulin-like peptides. Our results demonstrate how temporal intervention with a key regulating gene induces a determinative, extreme phenotypic shift. Our results also carry tremendous ecological and commercial implications. Invasive and pest crustacean species represent genuine concerns worldwide without an apparent solution. Such efforts might, therefore, benefit from sexual manipulations, as has been successfully realized with other arthropods. Commercially, such manipulation would be significant in sexually dimorphic cultured species, allowing the use of nonbreeding, monosex populations while dramatically increasing yield and possibly minimizing the invasion of exotic cultured species into the environment.

  11. Mood disorder susceptibility gene CACNA1C modifies mood-related behaviors in mice and interacts with sex to influence behavior in mice and diagnosis in humans

    PubMed Central

    Dao, David T.; Mahon, Pamela Belmonte; Cai, Xiang; Kovacsics, Colleen E.; Blackwell, Robert A.; Arad, Michal; Shi, Jianxin; Zandi, Peter P.; O’Donnell, Patricio; Knowles, James A.; Weissman, Myrna M.; Coryell, William; Scheftner, William A.; Lawson, William B.; Levinson, Douglas F.; Thompson, Scott M.; Potash, James B.; Gould, Todd D.

    2010-01-01

    Background Recent genome-wide association studies have associated polymorphisms in the gene CACNA1C, which codes for Cav1.2, with a bipolar disorder and depression diagnosis. Methods The behaviors of wild type and Cacna1c heterozygous mice of both sexes were evaluated in a number of tests. Based upon sex differences in our mouse data, we assessed a gene x sex interaction for diagnosis of mood disorders in human subjects. Data from the NIMH-BP Consortium and the GenRED Consortium were examined utilizing a combined dataset that included 2,021 mood disorder cases (1,223 females) and 1,840 controls (837 females). Results In both male and female mice, Cacna1c haploinsufficiency is associated with lower exploratory behavior, decreased response to amphetamine, and antidepressant-like behavior in the forced swim and tail suspension tests. Female, but not male, heterozygous mice displayed decreased risk-taking behavior or increased anxiety in multiple tests, greater attenuation of amphetamine-induced hyperlocomotion, decreased development of learned helplessness, and a decreased acoustic startle response indicating a sex-specific role of Cacna1c. In humans, sex-specific genetic association was seen for two intronic single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), rs2370419 and rs2470411, in CACNA1C, with effects in females (OR=1.64, 1.32), but not in males (OR=0.82, 0.86). The interactions by sex were significant after correction for testing 190 SNPs (P=1.4 x 10−4, 2.1 x 10−4; Pcorrected=0.03, 0.04), and were consistent across two large data sets. Conclusions Our preclinical results support a role for CACNA1C in mood disorder pathophysiology, and the combination of human genetic and preclinical data support an interaction between sex and genotype. PMID:20723887

  12. Sexual selection and maintenance of sex: evidence from comparisons of rates of genomic accumulation of mutations and divergence of sex-related genes in sexual and hermaphroditic species of Caenorhabditis.

    PubMed

    Artieri, Carlo G; Haerty, Wilfried; Gupta, Bhagwati P; Singh, Rama S

    2008-05-01

    Several hypotheses have been proposed to explain the persistence of dioecy despite the reproductive advantages conferred to hermaphrodites, including greater efficiency at purging deleterious mutations in the former. Dioecy can benefit from both mutation purging and accelerated evolution by bringing together beneficial mutations in the same individual via recombination and shuffling of genotypes. In addition, mathematical treatment has shown that sexual selection is also capable of mitigating the cost of maintaining separate sexes by increasing the overall fitness of sexual populations, and genomic comparisons have shown that sexual selection can lead to accelerated evolution. Here, we examine the advantages of dioecy versus hermaphroditism by comparing the rate of evolution in sex-related genes and the rate of accumulation of deleterious mutations using a large number of orthologs (11,493) in the dioecious Caenorhabditis remanei and the hermaphroditic Caenorhabditis briggsae. We have used this data set to estimate the deleterious mutation rate per generation, U, in both species and find that although it is significantly higher in hermaphrodites, both species are at least 2 orders of magnitude lower than the value required to explain the persistence of sex by efficiency at purging deleterious mutations alone. We also find that genes expressed in sperm are evolving rapidly in both species; however, they show a greater increase in their rate of evolution relative to genes expressed in other tissues in C. remanei, suggesting stronger sexual selection pressure acting on these genes in dioecious species. Interestingly, the persistence of a signal of rapid evolution of sperm genes in C. briggsae suggests a recent evolutionary origin of hermaphrodism in this lineage. Our results provide empirical evidence of increased sexual selection pressure in dioecious animals, supporting the possibility that sexual selection may play an important role in the maintenance of sexual

  13. Association of Egg Mass and Egg Sex: Gene Expression Analysis from Maternal RNA in the Germinal Disc Region of Layer Hens (Gallus gallus).

    PubMed

    Aslam, Muhammad Aamir; Schokker, Dirkjan; Groothuis, Ton G G; de Wit, Agnes A C; Smits, Mari A; Woelders, Henri

    2015-06-01

    Female birds have been shown to manipulate offspring sex ratio. However, mechanisms of sex ratio bias are not well understood. Reduced feed availability and change in body condition can affect the mass of eggs in birds that could lead to a skew in sex ratio. We employed feed restriction in laying chickens (Gallus gallus) to induce a decrease in body condition and egg mass using 45 chicken hens in treatment and control groups. Feed restriction led to an overall decline of egg mass. In the second period of treatment (Days 9-18) with more severe feed restriction and a steeper decline of egg mass, the sex ratio per hen (proportion of male eggs) had a significant negative association with mean egg mass per hen. Based on this association, two groups of hens were selected from feed restriction group, that is, hens producing male bias with low egg mass and hens producing female bias with high egg mass with overall sex ratios of 0.71 and 0.44 respectively. Genomewide transcriptome analysis on the germinal disks of F1 preovulatory follicles collected at the time of occurrence of meiosis-I was performed. We did not find significantly differentially expressed genes in these two groups of hens. However, gene set enrichment analysis showed that a number of cellular processes related to cell cycle progression, mitotic/meiotic apparatus, and chromosomal movement were enriched in female-biased hens or high mean egg mass as compared with male-biased hens or low mean egg mass. The differentially expressed gene sets may be involved in meiotic drive regulating sex ratio in the chicken.

  14. HIV-1 Negative Female Sex Workers Sustain High Cervical IFNε, Low Immune Activation and Low Expression of HIV-1 Required Host Genes

    PubMed Central

    Abdulhaqq, Shaheed A.; Zorrilla, Carmen; Kang, Guobin; Yin, Xiangfan; Tamayo, Vivian; Seaton, Kelly E.; Joseph, Jocelin; Garced, Sheyla; Tomaras, Georgia D.; Linn, Kristin A.; Foulkes, Andrea S.; Azzoni, Livio; VerMilyea, Matthew; Coutifaris, Christos; Kossenkov, Andrew V.; Showe, Louise; Kraiselburd, Edmundo N.; Li, Qingsheng; Montaner, Luis J.

    2015-01-01

    Sex workers within high HIV endemic areas are often a target population where anti-HIV prophylactic strategies are tested. We hypothesize that in women with high levels of genital exposure to semen changes in cervicovaginal mucosal and/or systemic immune activation will contribute to a decreased susceptibility to HIV-1 infection. To address this question, we assessed sexual activity, immune activation status (in peripheral blood), as well as cellular infiltrates and gene expression in ectocervical mucosa biopsies in female sex workers [FSW] (n=50), as compared to control women [CG] (n=32). FSW had low to absent HIV-1 specific immune responses with significantly lower CD38 expression on circulating CD4+ or CD8+ T-Cells (both: p<0.001) together with lower cervical gene expression of genes associated with leukocyte homing and chemotaxis. FSW also had increased levels of Interferon-ε gene and protein expression in the cervical epithelium together with reduced expression of genes associated with HIV-1 integration and replication. A correlative relationship between semen exposure and elevated type-1 IFN expression in FSW was also established. Overall, our data suggest that long-term condomless sex work can result in multiple changes within the cervicovaginal compartment that would contribute to sustaining a lower susceptibility for HIV-1 infection in absence of HIV-specific responses. PMID:26555708

  15. Identification of regions interacting with ovo{sup D} mutations: Potential new genes involved in germline sex determination or differentiation in Drosophila melanogaster

    SciTech Connect

    Pauli, D.; Oliver, B.; Mahowald, A.P.

    1995-02-01

    Only a few Drosophila melanogaster germline sex determination genes are known, and there have been no systematic screens to identify new genes involved in this important biological process. The ovarian phenotypes produced by females mutant for dominant alleles of the ovo gene are modified in flies with altered doses of other loci involved in germline sex determination in Drosophila (Sex-lethal{sup +}, snas fille{sup +} and ovarian tumor{sup +}). This observation constitutes the basis for a screen to identify additional genes required for proper establishment of germline sexual identity. We tested 300 deletions, which together cover {approximately}58% of the euchromatic portion of the genome, for genetic interactions with ovo{sup D}. Hemizygosity for more than a dozen small regions show interactions that either partially suppress or enhance the ovarian phenotypes of females mutant for one or more of the three dominant ovo mutations. These regions probably contain genes whose products act in developmental heirarchies that include ovo{sup +} protein. 40 refs, 7 figs., 5 tabs.

  16. Disentangling the effect of genes, the environment and chance on sex ratio variation in a wild bird population

    PubMed Central

    Postma, Erik; Heinrich, Franziska; Koller, Ursina; Sardell, Rebecca J.; Reid, Jane M.; Arcese, Peter; Keller, Lukas F.

    2011-01-01

    Sex ratio theory proposes that the equal sex ratio typically observed in birds and mammals is the result of natural selection. However, in species with chromosomal sex determination, the same 1 : 1 sex ratio is expected under random Mendelian segregation. Here, we present an analysis of 14 years of sex ratio data for a population of song sparrows (Melospiza melodia) on Mandarte Island, at the nestling stage and at independence from parental care. We test for the presence of variance in sex ratio over and above the binomial variance expected under Mendelian segregation, and thereby quantify the potential for selection to shape sex ratio. Furthermore, if sex ratio variation is to be shaped by selection, we expect some of this extra-binomial variation to have a genetic basis. Despite ample statistical power, we find no evidence for the existence of either genetic or environmentally induced variation in sex ratio, in the nest or at independence. Instead, the sex ratio variation observed matches that expected under random Mendelian segregation. Using one of the best datasets of its kind, we conclude that female song sparrows do not, and perhaps cannot, adjust the sex of their offspring. We discuss the implications of this finding and make suggestions for future research. PMID:21345862

  17. Identification of the transcriptional unit, structural organization, and promoter sequence of the human sex-determining region Y (SRY) gene, using a reverse genetic approach

    SciTech Connect

    Hua Su; Lau, Y.F.C. )

    1993-01-01

    Using a simple strategy involving cosmid-mediated gene transfer, cDNA library construction, and molecular characterization techniques, the authors have determined the transcriptional unit, structural organization, and promoter sequence of the human sex-determining region Y (SRY) gene, the putative testis-determining factor (TDF) gene on the human Y chromosome. By this approach, a recombinant cosmid harboring the human SRY sequence was isolated and transfected to appropriate tissue-cultured cells. Recombinant cDNA clones were isolated from a cDNA library constructed from poly (A) + RNA of the transfected cells. Comparative studies between the respective cDNAs and the genomic cosmid have provided information regarding the organization of the SRY gene and its mRNAs. The results indicate that the human SRY gene is an intronless gene, produces transcripts of 1.1 kb, and possesses promoter activities in the transfected cells at approximately 310 bp of its upstream sequences. 57 refs., 5 figs.

  18. Inter- and intraspecies phylogenetic analyses reveal extensive X-Y gene conversion in the evolution of gametologous sequences of human sex chromosomes.

    PubMed

    Trombetta, Beniamino; Sellitto, Daniele; Scozzari, Rosaria; Cruciani, Fulvio

    2014-08-01

    It has long been believed that the male-specific region of the human Y chromosome (MSY) is genetically independent from the X chromosome. This idea has been recently dismissed due to the discovery that X-Y gametologous gene conversion may occur. However, the pervasiveness of this molecular process in the evolution of sex chromosomes has yet to be exhaustively analyzed. In this study, we explored how pervasive X-Y gene conversion has been during the evolution of the youngest stratum of the human sex chromosomes. By comparing about 0.5 Mb of human-chimpanzee gametologous sequences, we identified 19 regions in which extensive gene conversion has occurred. From our analysis, two major features of these emerged: 1) Several of them are evolutionarily conserved between the two species and 2) almost all of the 19 hotspots overlap with regions where X-Y crossing-over has been previously reported to be involved in sex reversal. Furthermore, in order to explore the dynamics of X-Y gametologous conversion in recent human evolution, we resequenced these 19 hotspots in 68 widely divergent Y haplogroups and used publicly available single nucleotide polymorphism data for the X chromosome. We found that at least ten hotspots are still active in humans. Hence, the results of the interspecific analysis are consistent with the hypothesis of widespread reticulate evolution within gametologous sequences in the differentiation of hominini sex chromosomes. In turn, intraspecific analysis demonstrates that X-Y gene conversion may modulate human sex-chromosome-sequence evolution to a greater extent than previously thought.

  19. A new method for sex determination based on detection of SRY, STS and amelogenin gene regions with simultaneous amplification of their homologous sequences by a multiplex PCR.

    PubMed

    Morikawa, Toshio; Yamamoto, Yuji; Miyaishi, Satoru

    2011-04-01

    We have developed a new method for sex determination based on simultaneous detection of the SRY (sex-determining region Y), STS (steroid sulfatase) and amelogenin (AMELX and AMELY) gene regions and their homologous sequences. The sex of 246 blood samples was correctly determined by this method. An AMELY-deleted male sample, which would have been erroneously considered female based solely on analysis of the amelogenin locus, was successfully identified as male by the present method. The detection limit of this method was 63 pg of genomic DNA, and the male DNA component could be detected from mixed samples having a male:female ratio as low as 1:10. This method was useful for degraded DNA and possessed the human specificity. Practical application to 35 autopsy cases is described.

  20. Inactivation and reactivation of sex-linked steroid sulfatase gene in murine cell culture.

    PubMed

    Schorderet, D F; Keitges, E A; Dubois, P M; Gartler, S M

    1988-03-01

    The murine X-linked steroid sulfatase gene (Sts) normally escapes X inactivation. However, we have observed that most long-term murine cell cultures are deficient in STS activity even though only the L cells are known to be derived from an STS- mouse strain. To investigate this phenomenon, we developed a selective system whereby STS+ cells could be selected from STS- populations. The system is based on making cells dependent on cholesterol-sulfate as the sole source of cholesterol, allowing only STS+ cells to grow. Two STS- cell lines, after treatment with either 5-azacytidine (5AC) or ethyl methane sulfonate (EMS), yielded STS+ revertants, suggesting that their STS- phenotype was due to hypermethylation. To study the evolution of STS- cell lines, we established XO and XX primary lines from STS+ strains; the XX cell line remained STS+ after more than 200 cell doublings whereas the XO became STS- after about 100 doublings. Treatment of this STS- XO cell line with 5AC produced clones with restored STS activity. All the revertants showed a growth disadvantage compared to their STS- counterparts. It would appear that aberrant methylation is the basis for much of the STS deficiency observed in established murine lines and that its propagation is due to the growth advantage of STS- over STS+ cells.

  1. Transcriptomic Analysis of Endangered Chinese Salamander: Identification of Immune, Sex and Reproduction-Related Genes and Genetic Markers

    PubMed Central

    Che, Rongbo; Sun, Yuena; Wang, Rixin; Xu, Tianjun

    2014-01-01

    Background The Chinese salamander (Hynobius chinensis), an endangered amphibian species of salamander endemic to China, has attracted much attention because of its value of studying paleontology evolutionary history and decreasing population size. Despite increasing interest in the Hynobius chinensis genome, genomic resources for the species are still very limited. A comprehensive transcriptome of Hynobius chinensis, which will provide a resource for genome annotation, candidate genes identification and molecular marker development should be generated to supplement it. Principal Findings We performed a de novo assembly of Hynobius chinensis transcriptome by Illumina sequencing. A total of 148,510 nonredundant unigenes with an average length of approximately 580 bp were obtained. In all, 60,388 (40.66%) unigenes showed homologous matches in at least one database and 33,537 (22.58%) unigenes were annotated by all four databases. In total, 41,553 unigenes were categorized into 62 sub-categories by BLAST2GO search, and 19,468 transcripts were assigned to 140 KEGG pathways. A large number of unigenes involved in immune system, local adaptation, reproduction and sex determination were identified, as well as 31,982 simple sequence repeats (SSRs) and 460,923 putative single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). Conclusion This dataset represents the first transcriptome analysis of the Chinese salamander (Hynobius chinensis), an endangered species, to be also the first time of hynobiidae. The transcriptome will provide valuable resource for further research in discovery of new genes, protection of population, adaptive evolution and survey of various pathways, as well as development of molecule markers in Chinese salamander; and reference information for closely related species. PMID:24498226

  2. The role of the sex-determining region Y gene in the etiology of 46,XX maleness

    SciTech Connect

    Fechner, P.Y.; Marcantonio, S.M.; Jaswaney, V.; Stetten, G.; Migeon, C.J.; Smith, K.D.; Berkovitz, G.D. ); Goodfellow, P.N. ); Amrhein, J.A. ); Bard, P.A. ); Lee, P.A. ); Reid, C. ); Tsalikian, E. ); Urban, M.D. )

    1993-03-01

    The condition of 46,XX maleness is characterized by testicular development in subjects who have two X chromosomes but who lack a normal Y chromosome. Several etiologies have been proposed to explain 46,XX maleness: (1) translocation of the testis-determining factor from the Y to the X chromosome, (2) mutation in an autosomal or X chromosome gene which permits testicular determination in the absence of TDF, and (3) undetected mosaicism with a Y-bearing cell line. The authors evaluated 10 affected subjects who were ascertained for different reasons and who had several distinct phenotypes. Six subjects had inherited sequences from the short arm of the Y chromosome including the sex-determining region Y gene (SRY). Five of the subjects were pubertal at the time of evaluation and had a phenotype similar to that of Klinefelter syndrome with evidence of Sertoli cell and Leydig cell dysfunction. One subject had evidence from Southern blot analysis and in situ hybridization for the presence of an intact Y chromosome in approximately 1% of cells. Three subjects lacked Y sequences by Southern blot analysis and by polymerase chain reaction amplification of SRY. These subjects were ascertained in the newborn period because of congenital anomalies. One had multiple anomalies including cardiac abnormalities; one had cardiac anomalies alone; and one had ambiguous genitalia. The data confirm the genetic heterogeneity of 46,XX maleness, in which some subjects have SRY while other subjects lack it. In addition, there is phenotypic heterogeneity among subjects who lack SRY suggesting that there is also genetic heterogeneity within this subgroup. 43 refs., 3 figs., 4 tabs.

  3. Transcriptomic Analysis for Different Sex Types of Ricinus communis L. during Development from Apical Buds to Inflorescences by Digital Gene Expression Profiling.

    PubMed

    Tan, Meilian; Xue, Jianfeng; Wang, Lei; Huang, Jiaxiang; Fu, Chunling; Yan, Xingchu

    2015-01-01

    The castor plant (Ricinus communis L.) is a versatile industrial oilseed crop with a diversity of sex patterns, its hybrid breeding for improving yield and high purity is still hampered by genetic instability of female and poor knowledge of sex expression mechanisms. To obtain some hints involved in sex expression and provide the basis for further insight into the molecular mechanisms of castor plant sex determination, we performed DGE analysis to investigate differences between the transcriptomes of apices and racemes derived from female (JXBM0705P) and monoecious (JXBM0705M) lines. A total of 18 DGE libraries were constructed from the apices and racemes of a wild monoecious line and its isogenic female derivative at three stages of apex development, in triplicate. Approximately 5.7 million clean tags per library were generated and mapped to the reference castor genome. Transcriptomic analysis showed that identical dynamic changes of gene expression were indicated in monoecious and female apical bud during its development from vegetation to reproduction, with more genes expressed at the raceme formation and infant raceme stages compare to the early leaf bud stage. More than 3000 of differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were detected in Ricinus apices at three developmental stages between two different sex types. A number of DEGs involved in hormone response and biosynthesis, such as auxin response and transport, transcription factors, signal transduction, histone demethylation/methylation, programmed cell death, and pollination, putatively associated with sex expression and reproduction were discovered, and the selected DEGs showed consistent expression between qRT-PCR validation and the DGE patterns. Most of those DEGs were suppressed at the early leaf stage in buds of the mutant, but then activated at the following transition stage (5-7-leaf stage) of buds in the mutant, and ultimately, the number of up-regulated DEGs was equal to that of down-regulation in the

  4. Transcriptomic Analysis for Different Sex Types of Ricinus communis L. during Development from Apical Buds to Inflorescences by Digital Gene Expression Profiling

    PubMed Central

    Tan, Meilian; Xue, Jianfeng; Wang, Lei; Huang, Jiaxiang; Fu, Chunling; Yan, Xingchu

    2016-01-01

    The castor plant (Ricinus communis L.) is a versatile industrial oilseed crop with a diversity of sex patterns, its hybrid breeding for improving yield and high purity is still hampered by genetic instability of female and poor knowledge of sex expression mechanisms. To obtain some hints involved in sex expression and provide the basis for further insight into the molecular mechanisms of castor plant sex determination, we performed DGE analysis to investigate differences between the transcriptomes of apices and racemes derived from female (JXBM0705P) and monoecious (JXBM0705M) lines. A total of 18 DGE libraries were constructed from the apices and racemes of a wild monoecious line and its isogenic female derivative at three stages of apex development, in triplicate. Approximately 5.7 million clean tags per library were generated and mapped to the reference castor genome. Transcriptomic analysis showed that identical dynamic changes of gene expression were indicated in monoecious and female apical bud during its development from vegetation to reproduction, with more genes expressed at the raceme formation and infant raceme stages compare to the early leaf bud stage. More than 3000 of differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were detected in Ricinus apices at three developmental stages between two different sex types. A number of DEGs involved in hormone response and biosynthesis, such as auxin response and transport, transcription factors, signal transduction, histone demethylation/methylation, programmed cell death, and pollination, putatively associated with sex expression and reproduction were discovered, and the selected DEGs showed consistent expression between qRT-PCR validation and the DGE patterns. Most of those DEGs were suppressed at the early leaf stage in buds of the mutant, but then activated at the following transition stage (5-7-leaf stage) of buds in the mutant, and ultimately, the number of up-regulated DEGs was equal to that of down-regulation in the

  5. Molecular characterization and expression profile of three Fem-1 genes in Eriocheir sinensis provide a new insight into crab sex-determining mechanism.

    PubMed

    Song, Chengwen; Cui, Zhaoxia; Hui, Min; Liu, Yuan; Li, Yingdong

    2015-11-01

    The FEM-1 protein of Caenorhabditis elegans plays a crucial role in the nematode sex-determination pathway. Here, we reported the characterization of three members of Fem-1 gene family in Eriocheir sinensis (designated EsFem-1a, EsFem-1b, and EsFem-1c), which were homologs of the nematode FEM-1 protein. The amino acid sequences of EsFem-1a, EsFem-1b, and EsFem-1c contained eight, nine, and eight ankyrin repeats, respectively. None of the ankyrin repeats had its own specific signature, and the evolution of ankyrin repeat was not completely independent. The predicted three-dimensional structure of EsFem-1 proteins exhibited highly similar superhelical conformation, especially the N-terminal six contiguous ankyrin repeats, which provided a binding surface for the protein-protein interaction. Phylogenetic tree based on the amino acid sequences revealed that EsFem-1a, EsFem-1b, and EsFem-1c were divided into three obvious separated clades. EsFem-1 genes were highly expressed in fertilized egg, 2-4 cell and blastula stage comparing with larval stage (P<0.01), which suggested they might be maternal genes. They also showed a certain degree of sexually dimorphic expression in some tissues. Notably, the highest expression of EsFem-1a was in the hepatopancreas, with EsFem-1b in testes and EsFem-1c in muscle (P<0.05), which indicated their potential role in a broad array of tissues. In addition, the genes initially involved in sex differentiation were not limited to those specifically expressed in the developing gonad. Taken together, these results suggested that EsFem-1 might function in crab early sex determination and late gonad development. The identification of Fem-1 gene family in E. sinensis provides a new insight into crab sex-determination mechanism.

  6. Evolution of ribosomal RNA gene copy number on the sex chromosomes of Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Lyckegaard, E M; Clark, A G

    1991-07-01

    A diverse array of cellular and evolutionary forces--including unequal crossing-over, magnification, compensation, and natural selection--is at play modulating the number of copies of ribosomal RNA (rRNA) genes on the X and Y chromosomes of Drosophila. Accurate estimates of naturally occurring distributions of copy numbers on both the X and Y chromosomes are needed in order to explore the evolutionary end result of these forces. Estimates of relative copy numbers of the ribosomal DNA repeat, as well as of the type I and type II inserts, were obtained for a series of 96 X chromosomes and 144 Y chromosomes by using densitometric measurements of slot blots of genomic DNA from adult D. melanogaster bearing appropriate deficiencies that reveal chromosome-specific copy numbers. Estimates of copy number were put on an absolute scale with slot blots having serial dilutions both of the repeat and of genomic DNA from nonpolytene larval brain and imaginal discs. The distributions of rRNA copy number are decidedly skewed, with a long tail toward higher copy numbers. These distributions were fitted by a population genetic model that posits three different types of exchange events--sister-chromatid exchange, intrachromatid exchange, and interchromosomal crossing-over. In addition, the model incorporates natural selection, because experimental evidence shows that there is a minimum number of functional elements necessary for survival. Adequate fits of the model were found, indicating that either natural selection also eliminates chromosomes with high copy number or that the rate of intrachromatid exchange exceeds the rate of interchromosomal exchange.

  7. Stage-specific expression profiling of Drosophila spermatogenesis suggests that meiotic sex chromosome inactivation drives genomic relocation of testis-expressed genes.

    PubMed

    Vibranovski, Maria D; Lopes, Hedibert F; Karr, Timothy L; Long, Manyuan

    2009-11-01

    In Drosophila, genes expressed in males tend to accumulate on autosomes and are underrepresented on the X chromosome. In particular, genes expressed in testis have been observed to frequently relocate from the X chromosome to the autosomes. The inactivation of X-linked genes during male meiosis (i.e., meiotic sex chromosome inactivation-MSCI) was first proposed to explain male sterility caused by X-autosomal translocation in Drosophila, and more recently it was suggested that MSCI might provide the conditions under which selection would favor the accumulation of testis-expressed genes on autosomes. In order to investigate the impact of MSCI on Drosophila testis-expressed genes, we performed a global gene expression analysis of the three major phases of D. melanogaster spermatogenesis: mitosis, meiosis, and post-meiosis. First, we found evidence supporting the existence of MSCI by comparing the expression levels of X- and autosome-linked genes, finding the former to be significantly reduced in meiosis. Second, we observed that the paucity of X-linked testis-expressed genes was restricted to those genes highly expressed in meiosis. Third, we found that autosomal genes relocated through retroposition from the X chromosome were more often highly expressed in meiosis in contrast to their X-linked parents. These results suggest MSCI as a general mechanism affecting the evolution of some testis-expressed genes.

  8. The orthologue of the fruitfly sex behaviour gene fruitless in the mosquito Aedes aegypti: evolution of genomic organisation and alternative splicing.

    PubMed

    Salvemini, Marco; D'Amato, Rocco; Petrella, Valeria; Aceto, Serena; Nimmo, Derric; Neira, Marco; Alphey, Luke; Polito, Lino C; Saccone, Giuseppe

    2013-01-01

    In Drosophila melanogaster the doublesex (dsx) and fruitless (fru) regulatory genes act at the bottom of the somatic sex determination pathway. Both are regulated via alternative splicing by an upstream female-specific TRA/TRA-2 complex, recognizing a common cis element. dsx controls somatic sexual differentiation of non-neural as well as of neural tissues. fru, on the other hand, expresses male-specific functions only in neural system where it is required to built the neural circuits underlying proper courtship behaviour. In the mosquito Aedes aegypti sex determination is different from Drosophila. The key male determiner M, which is located on one of a pair of homomorphic sex chromosomes, controls sex-specific splicing of the mosquito dsx orthologue. In this study we report the genomic organization and expression of the fru homologue in Ae. aegypti (Aeafru). We found that it is sex-specifically spliced suggesting that it is also under the control of the sex determination pathway. Comparative analyses between the Aeafru and Anopheles gambiae fru (Angfru) genomic loci revealed partial conservation of exon organization and extensive divergence of intron lengths. We find that Aeadsx and Aeafru share novel cis splicing regulatory elements conserved in the alternatively spliced regions. We propose that in Aedes aegypti sex-specific splicing of dsx and fru is most likely under the control of splicing regulatory factors which are different from TRA and TRA-2 found in other dipteran insects and discuss the potential use of fru and dsx for developing new genetic strategies in vector control.

  9. A quantitative trait loci-specific gene-by-sex interaction on systolic blood pressure among American Indians: the Strong Heart Family Study.

    PubMed

    Franceschini, Nora; MacCluer, Jean W; Göring, Harald H H; Cole, Shelley A; Rose, Kathryn M; Almasy, Laura; Diego, Vincent; Laston, Sandra; Lee, Elisa T; Howard, Barbara V; Best, Lyle G; Fabsitz, Richard R; Roman, Mary J; North, Kari E

    2006-08-01

    Age-adjusted systolic blood pressure is higher in males than females. Genetic factors may account for this sex-specific variation. To localize sex-specific quantitative trait loci (QTL) influencing blood pressure, we conducted a genome scan of systolic blood pressure, in males and females, separately and combined, and tested for aggregate and QTL-specific genotype-by-sex interaction in American Indian participants of the Strong Heart Family Study. Blood pressure was measured 3 times and the average of the last 2 measures was used for analyses. Systolic blood pressure was adjusted for age and antihypertensive treatment within study center. We performed variance component linkage analysis in the full sample and stratified by sex among 1168 females and 726 males. Marker allele frequencies were derived using maximum likelihood estimates based on all individuals, and multipoint identity-by-descent sharing was estimated using Loki. We detected suggestive evidence of a QTL influencing systolic blood pressure on chromosome 17 at 129 cM between markers D17S784 and D17S928 (logarithm of odds [LOD] = 2.4). This signal substantially improved when accounting for QTL-specific genotype-by-sex interaction (P = 0.04), because we observed an LOD score of 3.3 for systolic blood pressure in women on chromosome 17 at 136 cM. The magnitude of the linkage signal on chromosome 17q25.3 was slightly attenuated when participants taking antihypertensive medications were excluded, although suggestive evidence for linkage was still identified (LOD = 2.8 in women). Accounting for interaction with sex improved our ability to detect QTLs and demonstrated the importance of considering genotype-by-sex interaction in our search for blood pressure genes.

  10. Developmental expression of genes involved in neural estrogen biosynthesis and signaling in the brain of the orange-spotted grouper Epinephelus coioides during gonadal sex differentiation.

    PubMed

    Nagarajan, Ganesan; Tsai, Ya-Ju; Chen, Chia-Yung; Chang, Ching-Fong

    2011-11-01

    In the brain, the synthesis of neurosteroids and receptor activation during gonadal sex differentiation in teleosts are poorly understood. In the present study, the protogynous orange-spotted grouper (Epinephelus coioides) was selected as a model fish, and we hypothesized that de novo synthesis of neural estrogen may play a role in the female grouper brain during gonadal sex differentiation. We investigated the temporal expression of the genes StAR, cyp19a1b and pcna and the sex steroid nuclear receptors for estrogen (ERα, ERβ1 and ERβ2), androgen (AR) and the plasma membrane-associated estrogen receptor (GPR30) in the brain during early developmental ages from 90 days after hatching (dah) to 180dah after gonadal sex differentiation. Our results revealed that mRNA for ERs and GPR30 but not AR was significantly increased at 110dah (a time close to gonadal sex differentiation) in the forebrain and midbrain and for cyp19a1b at 110dah in the forebrain. Brain aromatase activity and estradiol (E2) levels, but not testosterone (T), were increased in the forebrain at 110 and 120dah, respectively. Furthermore, exogenous E2 stimulated cyp19a1b transcripts in the forebrain and hypothalamus and immunoreactive (ir)Cyp19a1b (aromatase enzyme) in the forebrain. irCyp19a1b localized in the glial cells of the forebrain regions. Therefore, we identified a peak of functional aromatase activity and estrogen signaling in the early grouper brain during gonadal sex differentiation. Moreover, pcna transcripts (a marker for cell proliferation activity) were higher in the early brain at 110-150dah. Thus, a peak time of development in the brain is suggested to occur during gonadal sex differentiation in the grouper.

  11. The Orthologue of the Fruitfly Sex Behaviour Gene Fruitless in the Mosquito Aedes aegypti: Evolution of Genomic Organisation and Alternative Splicing

    PubMed Central

    Salvemini, Marco; D'Amato, Rocco; Petrella, Valeria; Aceto, Serena; Nimmo, Derric; Neira, Marco; Alphey, Luke; Polito, Lino C.; Saccone, Giuseppe

    2013-01-01

    In Drosophila melanogaster the doublesex (dsx) and fruitless (fru) regulatory genes act at the bottom of the somatic sex determination pathway. Both are regulated via alternative splicing by an upstream female-specific TRA/TRA-2 complex, recognizing a common cis element. dsx controls somatic sexual differentiation of non-neural as well as of neural tissues. fru, on the other hand, expresses male-specific functions only in neural system where it is required to built the neural circuits underlying proper courtship behaviour. In the mosquito Aedes aegypti sex determination is different from Drosophila. The key male determiner M, which is located on one of a pair of homomorphic sex chromosomes, controls sex-specific splicing of the mosquito dsx orthologue. In this study we report the genomic organization and expression of the fru homologue in Ae. aegypti (Aeafru). We found that it is sex-specifically spliced suggesting that it is also under the control of the sex determination pathway. Comparative analyses between the Aeafru and Anopheles gambiae fru (Angfru) genomic loci revealed partial conservation of exon organization and extensive divergence of intron lengths. We find that Aeadsx and Aeafru share novel cis splicing regulatory elements conserved in the alternatively spliced regions. We propose that in Aedes aegypti sex-specific splicing of dsx and fru is most likely under the control of splicing regulatory factors which are different from TRA and TRA-2 found in other dipteran insects and discuss the potential use of fru and dsx for developing new genetic strategies in vector control. PMID:23418412

  12. Hox gene function and interaction in the milkweed bug Oncopeltus fasciatus (Hemiptera).

    PubMed

    Angelini, David R; Liu, Paul Z; Hughes, Cynthia L; Kaufman, Thomas C

    2005-11-15

    Studies in genetic model organisms such as Drosophila have demonstrated that the homeotic complex (Hox) genes impart segmental identity during embryogenesis. Comparative studies in a wide range of other insect taxa have shown that the Hox genes are expressed in largely conserved domains along the anterior-posterior body axis, but whether they are performing the same functions in different insects is an open question. Most of the Hox genes have been studied functionally in only a few holometabolous insects that undergo metamorphosis. Thus, it is unclear how the Hox genes are functioning in the majority of direct-developing insects and other arthropods. To address this question, we used a combination of RNAi and in situ hybridization to reveal the expression, functions, and regulatory interactions of the Hox genes in the milkweed bug Oncopeltus fasciatus. Our results reveal many similarities and some interesting differences compared to Drosophila. We find that the gene Antennapedia is required for the identity of all three thoracic segments, while Ultrabithorax, abdominal-A and Abdominal-B cooperate to pattern the abdomen. The three abdominal genes exhibit posterior prevalence like in Drosophila, but apparently via some post-transcriptional mechanism. The functions of the head genes proboscipedia, Deformed, and Sex combs reduced were shown previously, and here we find that the complex temporal expression of pb in the labium is like that of other insects, but its regulatory relationship with Scr is unique. Overall, our data reveal that the evolution of insect Hox genes has included many small changes within general conservation of expression and function, and that the milkweed bug provides a useful model for understanding the roles of Hox genes in a direct-developing insect.

  13. Sex difference in neural tube defects in p53-null mice is caused by differences in the complement of X not Y genes.

    PubMed

    Chen, Xuqi; Watkins, Rebecca; Delot, Emmanuele; Reliene, Ramune; Schiestl, Robert H; Burgoyne, Paul S; Arnold, Arthur P

    2008-02-01

    To shed light on the biological origins of sex differences in neural tube defects (NTDs), we examined Trp53-null C57BL/6 mouse embryos and neonates at 10.5 and 18.5 days post coitus (dpc) and at birth. We confirmed that female embryos show more NTDs than males. We also examined mice in which the testis-determining gene Sry is deleted from the Y chromosome but inserted onto an autosome as a transgene, producing XX and XY gonadal females and XX and XY gonadal males. At birth, Trp53 nullizygous mice were predominantly XY rather than XX, irrespective of gonadal type, showing that the sex difference in the lethal effect of Trp53 nullizygosity by postnatal day 1 is caused by differences in sex chromosome complement. At 10.5 dpc, the incidence of NTDs in Trp53-null progeny of XY* mice, among which the number of the X chromosomes varies independently of the presence or absence of a Y chromosome, was higher in mice with two copies of the X chromosome than in mice with a single copy. The presence of a Y chromosome had no protective effect, suggesting that sex differences in NTDs are caused by sex differences in the number of X chromosomes.

  14. Discovery of a disused desaturase gene from the pheromone gland of the moth Ascotis selenaria, which secretes an epoxyalkenyl sex pheromone.

    PubMed

    Fujii, Takeshi; Suzuki, Masataka G; Katsuma, Susumu; Ito, Katsuhiko; Rong, Yu; Matsumoto, Shogo; Ando, Tetsu; Ishikawa, Yukio

    2013-11-29

    Female Ascotis selenaria (Geometridae) moths use 3,4-epoxy-(Z,Z)-6,9-nonadecadiene, which is synthesized from linolenic acid, as the main component of their sex pheromone. While the use of dietary linolenic or linoleic fatty acid derivatives as sex pheromone components has been observed in moth species belonging to a few families including Geometridae, the majority of moths use derivatives of a common saturated fatty acid, palmitic acid, as their sex pheromone components. We attempted to gain insight into the differentiation of pheromone biosynthetic pathways in geometrids by analyzing the desaturase genes expressed in the pheromone gland of A. selenaria. We demonstrated that a Δ11-desaturase-like gene (Asdesat1) was specifically expressed in the pheromone gland of A. selenaria in spite of the absence of a desaturation step in the pheromone biosynthetic pathway in this species. Further analysis revealed that the presumed transmembrane domains were degenerated in Asdesat1. Phylogenetic analysis demonstrated that Asdesat1 anciently diverged from the lineage of Δ11-desaturases, which are currently widely used in the biosynthesis of sex pheromones by moths. These results suggest that an ancestral Δ11-desaturase became dysfunctional in A. selenaria after a shift in pheromone biosynthetic pathways.

  15. Age- and sex-related differences of organic anion-transporting polypeptide gene expression in livers of rats

    SciTech Connect

    Hou, Wei-Yu; Xu, Shang-Fu; Zhu, Qiong-Ni; Lu, Yuan-Fu; Cheng, Xing-Guo; Liu, Jie

    2014-10-15

    Organic anion-transporting polypeptides (Oatps) play important roles in transporting endogenous substances and xenobiotics into the liver and are implicated in drug-drug interactions. Many factors could influence their expression and result in alterations in drug disposition, efficacy and toxicity. This study was aimed to examine the development-, aging-, and sex-dependent Oatps expression in livers of rats. The livers from SD rats during development (− 2, 1, 7, 14, 21, 28, 35, and 60 d) and aging (60, 180, 540 and/or 800 d) were collected and total RNAs were extracted, purified, and subjected to real-time PCR analysis. Total proteins were extracted for western-blot analysis. Results showed that Oatp1a1, Oatp1a4, Oatp1a5 and Oatp1b2 were all hardly detectable in fetal rat livers, low at birth, rapidly increased after weaning (21 d), and reached the peak at 60 d. The Oatps remained stable during the age between 60–180 d, and decreased at elderly (540 and/or 800 d). After birth, Oatp1a1, Oatp1a4, and Oatp1b2 were all highly expressed in liver, in contrast, Oatp1a5 expression was low. Oatp expressions are male-predominant in rat livers. In the livers of aged rats, the Oatp expression decreased and shared a consistent ontogeny pattern at the mRNA and protein level. In conclusion, this study showed that in rat liver, Oatp1a1, Oatp1a4, Oatp1a5 and Oatp1b2 gene expressions are influenced by age and gender, which could provide a basis of individual variation in drug transport, metabolism and toxicity in children, elderly and women. - Highlights: • Oatp1a1, Oatp1a4, Oatp1a5 and Oatp1b2 expression in livers of rats. • Ontogenic changes of Oatps at − 2, 1, 7, 14, 21, 28, 35, and 60 days. • Age-related changes of Oatps at 60, 180, 540, and 800 days. • Sex-difference of Oatps at the both mRNA and protein levels.

  16. Sex Differences in Ethanol's Anxiolytic Effect and Chronic Ethanol Withdrawal Severity in Mice with a Null Mutation of the 5α-Reductase Type 1 Gene.

    PubMed

    Tanchuck-Nipper, Michelle A; Ford, Matthew M; Hertzberg, Anna; Beadles-Bohling, Amy; Cozzoli, Debra K; Finn, Deborah A

    2015-05-01

    Manipulation of endogenous levels of the GABAergic neurosteroid allopregnanolone alters sensitivity to some effects of ethanol. Chronic ethanol withdrawal decreases activity and expression of 5α-reductase-1, an important enzyme in allopregnanolone biosynthesis encoded by the 5α-reductase-1 gene (Srd5a1). The present studies examined the impact of Srd5a1 deletion in male and female mice on several acute effects of ethanol and on chronic ethanol withdrawal severity. Genotype and sex did not differentially alter ethanol-induced hypothermia, ataxia, hypnosis, or metabolism, but ethanol withdrawal was significantly lower in female versus male mice. On the elevated plus maze, deletion of the Srd5a1 gene significantly decreased ethanol's effect on total entries versus wildtype (WT) mice and significantly decreased ethanol's anxiolytic effect in female knockout (KO) versus WT mice. The limited sex differences in the ability of Srd5a1 genotype to modulate select ethanol effects may reflect an interaction between developmental compensations to deletion of the Srd5a1 gene with sex hormones and levels of endogenous neurosteroids.

  17. Characteristics of X- and Y-chromosome specific regions of the amelogenin gene and a PCR-based method for sex identification in red deer (Cervus elaphus).

    PubMed

    Gurgul, Artur; Radko, Anna; Słota, Ewa

    2010-07-01

    The present study attempts to analyse sequences of the X- and Y-chromosome specific regions of the amelogenin (AMEL) gene in red deer. To this end, primers specific for each form of the gene (AMELX and AMELY) were designed based on bovine genomic sequences and the homologous regions of the genes were sequenced. The obtained sequence of AMELX gene showed high similarity with the corresponding region in cattle (91%) and humans (77%), but this similarity was slightly lower among AMELY genes and showed 87 and 73% of identical nucleotides, respectively. In addition, three single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) were found in the AMELX gene of the female red deer investigated. Comparative analysis of the homologous fragments of the red deer AMELX and AMELY genes confirmed the deletion of an AMELY gene fragment in relation to AMELX. Homology of both sequences was 82% of identical nucleotides in the coding region and 74% in 3' non-coding sequence. The sequences studied showed considerable similarity to homologous fragments of the human and bovine gene, but the structural differences observed lead us to design PCR-based method for sex identification in red deer, based on the presented sequences.

  18. Sex moderates the effects of the Sorl1 gene rs2070045 polymorphism on cognitive impairment and disruption of the cingulum integrity in healthy elderly.

    PubMed

    Liang, Ying; Li, He; Lv, Chenlong; Shu, Ni; Chen, Kewei; Li, Xin; Zhang, Junying; Hu, Liangping; Zhang, Zhanjun

    2015-05-01

    The SORL1 rs2070045 polymorphism was reported to be associated with SorLA expression in the brain and the risk of late-onset Alzheimer's disease (AD). However, the influence of this polymorphism on cognitive functioning is likely to be moderated by sex. This study aimed to examine the sex moderation on the effects of rs2070045 on neuropsychological performance and the cingulum integrity in Chinese Han population. In this study, 780 non-demented older adults completed a battery of neuropsychological scales. Diffusion tensor images (DTI) of 126 subjects were acquired. We adopted the atlas-based segmentation strategy for calculating the DTI indices of the bilateral cingulum and cingulum hippocampal part for each subject. We used a multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA) to compare the cognitive performance and DTI differences between the rs2070045 genotype. Controlling for age, education, and the APOE ɛ4 status, the influence of sex on the effects of the rs2070045 polymorphism on executive function was observed. We also found an interaction between sex and the rs2070045 polymorphism on the white matter (WM) microstructure of the left cingulum hippocampal part. Furthermore, the mean diffusivity and axial diffusivity of the tract were associated with Trail Making Test performance in T/T men. These results hint that sex moderates the association between the rs2070045 polymorphism and executive function, as well as the WM integrity of the left cingulum hippocampal part. Our findings underscore the importance of considering the influence of sex when examining the candidate genes for cognitive abilities and AD.

  19. Sex-specific patterns and deregulation of endocrine pathways in the gene expression profiles of Bangladeshi adults exposed to arsenic contaminated drinking water.

    PubMed

    Muñoz, Alexandra; Chervona, Yana; Hall, Megan; Kluz, Thomas; Gamble, Mary V; Costa, Max

    2015-05-01

    Arsenic contamination of drinking water occurs globally and is associated with numerous diseases including skin, lung and bladder cancers, and cardiovascular disease. Recent research indicates that arsenic may be an endocrine disruptor. This study was conducted to evaluate the nature of gene expression changes among males and females exposed to arsenic contaminated water in Bangladesh at high and low doses. Twenty-nine (55% male) Bangladeshi adults with water arsenic exposure ranging from 50 to 1000 μg/L were selected from the Folic Acid Creatinine Trial. RNA was extracted from peripheral blood mononuclear cells for gene expression profiling using Affymetrix 1.0 ST arrays. Differentially expressed genes were assessed between high and low exposure groups for males and females separately and findings were validated using quantitative real-time PCR. There were 534 and 645 differentially expressed genes (p<0.05) in the peripheral blood mononuclear cells of males and females, respectively, when high and low water arsenic exposure groups were compared. Only 43 genes overlapped between the two sexes, with 29 changing in opposite directions. Despite the difference in gene sets both males and females exhibited common biological changes including deregulation of 17β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase enzymes, deregulation of genes downstream of Sp1 (specificity protein 1) transcription factor, and prediction of estrogen receptor alpha as a key hub in cardiovascular networks. Arsenic-exposed adults exhibit sex-specific gene expression profiles that implicate involvement of the endocrine system. Due to arsenic's possible role as an endocrine disruptor, exposure thresholds for arsenic may require different parameters for males and females.

  20. Early Life Exposure to Fructose Alters Maternal, Fetal and Neonatal Hepatic Gene Expression and Leads to Sex-Dependent Changes in Lipid Metabolism in Rat Offspring