Science.gov

Sample records for mammalian ancestor reconstruction

  1. Reconstructing a B-cell clonal lineage. I. Statistical inference of unobserved ancestors.

    PubMed

    Kepler, Thomas B

    2013-01-01

    One of the key phenomena in the adaptive immune response to infection and immunization is affinity maturation, during which antibody genes are mutated and selected, typically resulting in a substantial increase in binding affinity to the eliciting antigen. Advances in technology on several fronts have made it possible to clone large numbers of heavy-chain light-chain pairs from individual B cells and thereby identify whole sets of clonally related antibodies. These collections could provide the information necessary to reconstruct their own history - the sequence of changes introduced into the lineage during the development of the clone - and to study affinity maturation in detail. But the success of such a program depends entirely on accurately inferring the founding ancestor and the other unobserved intermediates. Given a set of clonally related immunoglobulin V-region genes, the method described here allows one to compute the posterior distribution over their possible ancestors, thereby giving a thorough accounting of the uncertainty inherent in the reconstruction. I demonstrate the application of this method on heavy-chain and light-chain clones, assess the reliability of the inference, and discuss the sources of uncertainty.

  2. Phylogenetic reconstruction of parental-care systems in the ancestors of birds.

    PubMed Central

    Tullberg, Birgitta S; Ah-King, Malin; Temrin, Hans

    2002-01-01

    Due to the controversy surrounding incipient avian parental care, ancestral parental care systems were reconstructed in a phylogeny including major extant amniote lineages. Using two different resolutions for the basal avian branches, transitions between the states no care, female care, biparental care and male care were inferred for the most basal branches of the tree. Uniparental female care was inferred for the lineage to birds and crocodiles. Using a phylogeny where ratites and tinamous branch off early and an ordered character-state assumption, a transition to biparental care was inferred for the ancestor of birds. This ancestor could be any organism along the lineage leading from the crocodile-bird split up to modern birds, not necessarily the original bird. We discuss the support for alternative avian phylogenies and the homology in parental care between crocodiles and birds. We suggest that the phylogenetic pattern should be used as a starting point for a more detailed analysis of parental care systems in birds and their relatives. PMID:11958694

  3. On the origin and evolution of thermophily: reconstruction of functional precambrian enzymes from ancestors of Bacillus.

    PubMed

    Hobbs, Joanne K; Shepherd, Charis; Saul, David J; Demetras, Nicholas J; Haaning, Svend; Monk, Colin R; Daniel, Roy M; Arcus, Vickery L

    2012-02-01

    Thermophily is thought to be a primitive trait, characteristic of early forms of life on Earth, that has been gradually lost over evolutionary time. The genus Bacillus provides an ideal model for studying the evolution of thermophily as it is an ancient taxon and its contemporary species inhabit a range of thermal environments. The thermostability of reconstructed ancestral proteins has been used as a proxy for ancient thermal adaptation. The reconstruction of ancestral "enzymes" has the added advantages of demonstrable activity, which acts as an internal control for accurate inference, and providing insights into the evolution of enzymatic catalysis. Here, we report the reconstruction of the structurally complex core metabolic enzyme LeuB (3-isopropylmalate dehydrogenase, E. C. 1.1.1.85) from the last common ancestor (LCA) of Bacillus using both maximum likelihood (ML) and Bayesian inference. ML LeuB from the LCA of Bacillus shares only 76% sequence identity with its closest contemporary homolog, yet it is fully functional, thermophilic, and exhibits high values for k(cat), k(cat)/K(M), and ΔG(‡) for unfolding. The Bayesian version of this enzyme is also thermophilic but exhibits anomalous catalytic kinetics. We have determined the 3D structure of the ML enzyme and found that it is more closely aligned with LeuB from deeply branching bacteria, such as Thermotoga maritima, than contemporary Bacillus species. To investigate the evolution of thermophily, three descendents of LeuB from the LCA of Bacillus were also reconstructed. They reveal a fluctuating trend in thermal evolution, with a temporal adaptation toward mesophily followed by a more recent return to thermophily. Structural analysis suggests that the determinants of thermophily in LeuB from the LCA of Bacillus and the most recent ancestor are distinct and that thermophily has arisen in this genus at least twice via independent evolutionary paths. Our results add significant fluctuations to the broad

  4. Reconstructing the genome of the most recent common ancestor of flowering plants.

    PubMed

    Murat, Florent; Armero, Alix; Pont, Caroline; Klopp, Christophe; Salse, Jérôme

    2017-03-13

    We describe here the reconstruction of the genome of the most recent common ancestor (MRCA) of modern monocots and eudicots, accounting for 95% of extant angiosperms, with its potential repertoire of 22,899 ancestral genes conserved in present-day crops. The MRCA provides a starting point for deciphering the reticulated evolutionary plasticity between species (rapidly versus slowly evolving lineages), subgenomes (pre- versus post-duplication blocks), genomic compartments (stable versus labile loci), genes (ancestral versus species-specific genes) and functions (gained versus lost ontologies), the key mutational forces driving the success of polyploidy in crops. The estimation of the timing of angiosperm evolution, based on MRCA genes, suggested that this group emerged 214 million years ago during the late Triassic era, before the oldest recorded fossil. Finally, the MRCA constitutes a unique resource for scientists to dissect major agronomic traits in translational genomics studies extending from model species to crops.

  5. Evolution of life history and behavior in Hominidae: towards phylogenetic reconstruction of the chimpanzee-human last common ancestor.

    PubMed

    Duda, Pavel; Zrzavý, Jan

    2013-10-01

    The origin of the fundamental behavioral differences between humans and our closest living relatives is one of the central issues of evolutionary anthropology. The prominent, chimpanzee-based referential model of early hominin behavior has recently been challenged on the basis of broad multispecies comparisons and newly discovered fossil evidence. Here, we argue that while behavioral data on extant great apes are extremely relevant for reconstruction of ancestral behaviors, these behaviors should be reconstructed trait by trait using formal phylogenetic methods. Using the widely accepted hominoid phylogenetic tree, we perform a series of character optimization analyses using 65 selected life-history and behavioral characters for all extant hominid species. This analysis allows us to reconstruct the character states of the last common ancestors of Hominoidea, Hominidae, and the chimpanzee-human last common ancestor. Our analyses demonstrate that many fundamental behavioral and life-history attributes of hominids (including humans) are evidently ancient and likely inherited from the common ancestor of all hominids. However, numerous behaviors present in extant great apes represent their own terminal autapomorphies (both uniquely derived and homoplastic). Any evolutionary model that uses a single extant species to explain behavioral evolution of early hominins is therefore of limited use. In contrast, phylogenetic reconstruction of ancestral states is able to provide a detailed suite of behavioral, ecological and life-history characters for each hypothetical ancestor. The living great apes therefore play an important role for the confident identification of the traits found in the chimpanzee-human last common ancestor, some of which are likely to represent behaviors of the fossil hominins.

  6. Reconstructing mammalian sleep dynamics with data assimilation.

    PubMed

    Sedigh-Sarvestani, Madineh; Schiff, Steven J; Gluckman, Bruce J

    2012-01-01

    Data assimilation is a valuable tool in the study of any complex system, where measurements are incomplete, uncertain, or both. It enables the user to take advantage of all available information including experimental measurements and short-term model forecasts of a system. Although data assimilation has been used to study other biological systems, the study of the sleep-wake regulatory network has yet to benefit from this toolset. We present a data assimilation framework based on the unscented Kalman filter (UKF) for combining sparse measurements together with a relatively high-dimensional nonlinear computational model to estimate the state of a model of the sleep-wake regulatory system. We demonstrate with simulation studies that a few noisy variables can be used to accurately reconstruct the remaining hidden variables. We introduce a metric for ranking relative partial observability of computational models, within the UKF framework, that allows us to choose the optimal variables for measurement and also provides a methodology for optimizing framework parameters such as UKF covariance inflation. In addition, we demonstrate a parameter estimation method that allows us to track non-stationary model parameters and accommodate slow dynamics not included in the UKF filter model. Finally, we show that we can even use observed discretized sleep-state, which is not one of the model variables, to reconstruct model state and estimate unknown parameters. Sleep is implicated in many neurological disorders from epilepsy to schizophrenia, but simultaneous observation of the many brain components that regulate this behavior is difficult. We anticipate that this data assimilation framework will enable better understanding of the detailed interactions governing sleep and wake behavior and provide for better, more targeted, therapies.

  7. Reconstructing Mammalian Sleep Dynamics with Data Assimilation

    PubMed Central

    Sedigh-Sarvestani, Madineh; Schiff, Steven J.; Gluckman, Bruce J.

    2012-01-01

    Data assimilation is a valuable tool in the study of any complex system, where measurements are incomplete, uncertain, or both. It enables the user to take advantage of all available information including experimental measurements and short-term model forecasts of a system. Although data assimilation has been used to study other biological systems, the study of the sleep-wake regulatory network has yet to benefit from this toolset. We present a data assimilation framework based on the unscented Kalman filter (UKF) for combining sparse measurements together with a relatively high-dimensional nonlinear computational model to estimate the state of a model of the sleep-wake regulatory system. We demonstrate with simulation studies that a few noisy variables can be used to accurately reconstruct the remaining hidden variables. We introduce a metric for ranking relative partial observability of computational models, within the UKF framework, that allows us to choose the optimal variables for measurement and also provides a methodology for optimizing framework parameters such as UKF covariance inflation. In addition, we demonstrate a parameter estimation method that allows us to track non-stationary model parameters and accommodate slow dynamics not included in the UKF filter model. Finally, we show that we can even use observed discretized sleep-state, which is not one of the model variables, to reconstruct model state and estimate unknown parameters. Sleep is implicated in many neurological disorders from epilepsy to schizophrenia, but simultaneous observation of the many brain components that regulate this behavior is difficult. We anticipate that this data assimilation framework will enable better understanding of the detailed interactions governing sleep and wake behavior and provide for better, more targeted, therapies. PMID:23209396

  8. Lactococcal bacteriophage p2 receptor-binding protein structure suggests a common ancestor gene with bacterial and mammalian viruses.

    PubMed

    Spinelli, Silvia; Desmyter, Aline; Verrips, C Theo; de Haard, Hans J W; Moineau, Sylvain; Cambillau, Christian

    2006-01-01

    Lactococcus lactis is a Gram-positive bacterium used extensively by the dairy industry for the manufacture of fermented milk products. The double-stranded DNA bacteriophage p2 infects specific L. lactis strains using a receptor-binding protein (RBP) located at the tip of its noncontractile tail. We have solved the crystal structure of phage p2 RBP, a homotrimeric protein composed of three domains: the shoulders, a beta-sandwich attached to the phage; the neck, an interlaced beta-prism; and the receptor-recognition head, a seven-stranded beta-barrel. We used the complex of RBP with a neutralizing llama VHH domain to identify the receptor-binding site. Structural similarity between the recognition-head domain of phage p2 and those of adenoviruses and reoviruses, which invade mammalian cells, suggests that these viruses, despite evolutionary distant targets, lack of sequence similarity and the different chemical nature of their genomes (DNA versus RNA), might have a common ancestral gene.

  9. Whence genes in pieces: reconstruction of the exon-intron gene structures of the last eukaryotic common ancestor and other ancestral eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Koonin, Eugene V; Csuros, Miklos; Rogozin, Igor B

    2013-01-01

    In eukaryotes, protein-coding sequences are interrupted by non-coding sequences known as introns. During mRNA maturation, introns are excised by the spliceosome and the coding regions, exons, are spliced to form the mature coding region. The intron densities widely differ between eukaryotic lineages, from 6 to 7 introns per kb of coding sequence in vertebrates, some invertebrates and green plants, to only a few introns across the entire genome in many unicellular eukaryotes. Evolutionary reconstructions using maximum likelihood methods suggest intron-rich ancestors for each major group of eukaryotes. For the last common ancestor of animals, the highest intron density of all extant and extinct eukaryotes was inferred, at 120-130% of the human intron density. Furthermore, an intron density within 53-74% of the human values was inferred for the last eukaryotic common ancestor. Accordingly, evolution of eukaryotic genes in all lines of descent involved primarily intron loss, with substantial gain only at the bases of several branches including plants and animals. These conclusions have substantial biological implications indicating that the common ancestor of all modern eukaryotes was a complex organism with a gene architecture resembling those in multicellular organisms. Alternative splicing most likely initially appeared as an inevitable result of splicing errors and only later was employed to generate structural and functional diversification of proteins.

  10. Reconstructed Ancestral Myo-Inositol-3-Phosphate Synthases Indicate That Ancestors of the Thermococcales and Thermotoga Species Were More Thermophilic than Their Descendants

    PubMed Central

    Butzin, Nicholas C.; Lapierre, Pascal; Green, Anna G.; Swithers, Kristen S.; Gogarten, J. Peter; Noll, Kenneth M.

    2013-01-01

    The bacterial genomes of Thermotoga species show evidence of significant interdomain horizontal gene transfer from the Archaea. Members of this genus acquired many genes from the Thermococcales, which grow at higher temperatures than Thermotoga species. In order to study the functional history of an interdomain horizontally acquired gene we used ancestral sequence reconstruction to examine the thermal characteristics of reconstructed ancestral proteins of the Thermotoga lineage and its archaeal donors. Several ancestral sequence reconstruction methods were used to determine the possible sequences of the ancestral Thermotoga and Archaea myo-inositol-3-phosphate synthase (MIPS). These sequences were predicted to be more thermostable than the extant proteins using an established sequence composition method. We verified these computational predictions by measuring the activities and thermostabilities of purified proteins from the Thermotoga and the Thermococcales species, and eight ancestral reconstructed proteins. We found that the ancestral proteins from both the archaeal donor and the Thermotoga most recent common ancestor recipient were more thermostable than their descendants. We show that there is a correlation between the thermostability of MIPS protein and the optimal growth temperature (OGT) of its host, which suggests that the OGT of the ancestors of these species of Archaea and the Thermotoga grew at higher OGTs than their descendants. PMID:24391933

  11. Reconstructed ancestral Myo-inositol-3-phosphate synthases indicate that ancestors of the Thermococcales and Thermotoga species were more thermophilic than their descendants.

    PubMed

    Butzin, Nicholas C; Lapierre, Pascal; Green, Anna G; Swithers, Kristen S; Gogarten, J Peter; Noll, Kenneth M

    2013-01-01

    The bacterial genomes of Thermotoga species show evidence of significant interdomain horizontal gene transfer from the Archaea. Members of this genus acquired many genes from the Thermococcales, which grow at higher temperatures than Thermotoga species. In order to study the functional history of an interdomain horizontally acquired gene we used ancestral sequence reconstruction to examine the thermal characteristics of reconstructed ancestral proteins of the Thermotoga lineage and its archaeal donors. Several ancestral sequence reconstruction methods were used to determine the possible sequences of the ancestral Thermotoga and Archaea myo-inositol-3-phosphate synthase (MIPS). These sequences were predicted to be more thermostable than the extant proteins using an established sequence composition method. We verified these computational predictions by measuring the activities and thermostabilities of purified proteins from the Thermotoga and the Thermococcales species, and eight ancestral reconstructed proteins. We found that the ancestral proteins from both the archaeal donor and the Thermotoga most recent common ancestor recipient were more thermostable than their descendants. We show that there is a correlation between the thermostability of MIPS protein and the optimal growth temperature (OGT) of its host, which suggests that the OGT of the ancestors of these species of Archaea and the Thermotoga grew at higher OGTs than their descendants.

  12. Single-cell spatial reconstruction reveals global division of labour in the mammalian liver.

    PubMed

    Bahar Halpern, Keren; Shenhav, Rom; Matcovitch-Natan, Orit; Tóth, Beáta; Lemze, Doron; Golan, Matan; Massasa, Efi E; Baydatch, Shaked; Landen, Shanie; Moor, Andreas E; Brandis, Alexander; Giladi, Amir; Stokar-Avihail, Avigail; David, Eyal; Amit, Ido; Itzkovitz, Shalev

    2017-02-16

    The mammalian liver consists of hexagon-shaped lobules that are radially polarized by blood flow and morphogens. Key liver genes have been shown to be differentially expressed along the lobule axis, a phenomenon termed zonation, but a detailed genome-wide reconstruction of this spatial division of labour has not been achieved. Here we measure the entire transcriptome of thousands of mouse liver cells and infer their lobule coordinates on the basis of a panel of zonated landmark genes, characterized with single-molecule fluorescence in situ hybridization. Using this approach, we obtain the zonation profiles of all liver genes with high spatial resolution. We find that around 50% of liver genes are significantly zonated and uncover abundant non-monotonic profiles that peak at the mid-lobule layers. These include a spatial order of bile acid biosynthesis enzymes that matches their position in the enzymatic cascade. Our approach can facilitate the reconstruction of similar spatial genomic blueprints for other mammalian organs.

  13. The last common bilaterian ancestor

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Erwin, Douglas H.; Davidson, Eric H.

    2002-01-01

    Many regulatory genes appear to be utilized in at least superficially similar ways in the development of particular body parts in Drosophila and in chordates. These similarities have been widely interpreted as functional homologies, producing the conventional view of the last common protostome-deuterostome ancestor (PDA) as a complex organism that possessed some of the same body parts as modern bilaterians. Here we discuss an alternative view, in which the last common PDA had a less complex body plan than is frequently conceived. This reconstruction alters expectations for Neoproterozoic fossil remains that could illustrate the pathways of bilaterian evolution.

  14. The universal ancestor

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Woese, C.

    1998-01-01

    A genetic annealing model for the universal ancestor of all extant life is presented; the name of the model derives from its resemblance to physical annealing. The scenario pictured starts when "genetic temperatures" were very high, cellular entities (progenotes) were very simple, and information processing systems were inaccurate. Initially, both mutation rate and lateral gene transfer levels were elevated. The latter was pandemic and pervasive to the extent that it, not vertical inheritance, defined the evolutionary dynamic. As increasingly complex and precise biological structures and processes evolved, both the mutation rate and the scope and level of lateral gene transfer, i.e., evolutionary temperature, dropped, and the evolutionary dynamic gradually became that characteristic of modern cells. The various subsystems of the cell "crystallized," i.e., became refractory to lateral gene transfer, at different stages of "cooling," with the translation apparatus probably crystallizing first. Organismal lineages, and so organisms as we know them, did not exist at these early stages. The universal phylogenetic tree, therefore, is not an organismal tree at its base but gradually becomes one as its peripheral branchings emerge. The universal ancestor is not a discrete entity. It is, rather, a diverse community of cells that survives and evolves as a biological unit. This communal ancestor has a physical history but not a genealogical one. Over time, this ancestor refined into a smaller number of increasingly complex cell types with the ancestors of the three primary groupings of organisms arising as a result.

  15. Gazing Back: Communing with Our Ancestors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Osorio, Jonathan Kay Kamakawiwo'ole

    2004-01-01

    This article is a poignant commentary on the connection of the Native Hawaiian people with the past, the present, and the future. In this article, the author positions himself within the histories of his people. He talks about putting faces to his ancestors by linking them with the people of his day, and he talks about reconstructing the…

  16. Prediction of human miRNA target genes using computationally reconstructed ancestral mammalian sequences

    PubMed Central

    Leclercq, Mickael; Diallo, Abdoulaye Baniré; Blanchette, Mathieu

    2017-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNA) are short single-stranded RNA molecules derived from hairpin-forming precursors that play a crucial role as post-transcriptional regulators in eukaryotes and viruses. In the past years, many microRNA target genes (MTGs) have been identified experimentally. However, because of the high costs of experimental approaches, target genes databases remain incomplete. Although several target prediction programs have been developed in the recent years to identify MTGs in silico, their specificity and sensitivity remain low. Here, we propose a new approach called MirAncesTar, which uses ancestral genome reconstruction to boost the accuracy of existing MTGs prediction tools for human miRNAs. For each miRNA and each putative human target UTR, our algorithm makes uses of existing prediction tools to identify putative target sites in the human UTR, as well as in its mammalian orthologs and inferred ancestral sequences. It then evaluates evidence in support of selective pressure to maintain target site counts (rather than sequences), accounting for the possibility of target site turnover. It finally integrates this measure with several simpler ones using a logistic regression predictor. MirAncesTar improves the accuracy of existing MTG predictors by 26% to 157%. Source code and prediction results for human miRNAs, as well as supporting evolutionary data are available at http://cs.mcgill.ca/∼blanchem/mirancestar. PMID:27899600

  17. Pleistocene paleoenvironmental reconstructions and mammalian evolution in South-East Asia: focus on fossil faunas from Thailand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tougard, C.; Montuire, S.

    2006-01-01

    Mammalian faunal studies have provided various clues for a better reconstruction of hominid Quaternary paleoenvironments. In this work, two methods were used: (1) the cenogram method, based on a graphical representation of the mammalian community structure, and (2) the species richness of murine rodents to estimate climatic parameters. These methods were applied to Middle and Late Pleistocene mammalian faunas of South-East Asia, from South China to Indonesia. Special emphasis was laid on a fauna from north-east Thailand dated back to approximately 170,000 years (i.e. a glacial period). This Thai fauna seems characteristic of a slightly open forested environment intermediate between those of present-day central Myanmar and the northern part of South China. In the Thai fauna, the occurrence of both cool-loving mammalian taxa, currently living further north, and species of larger body size than their living counterparts, indicates cooler and probably drier climatic conditions than present-day climates in Thailand. These results are quite consistent with Middle Pleistocene palynological records from South China and eastern Java. From other less well-documented Pleistocene faunas, taken into account in this work, humid climatic conditions of interglacial periods were revealed from large mammalian taxa.

  18. The deuterostome ancestor.

    PubMed

    Gerhart, John

    2006-12-01

    Hemichordates, the phylum of bilateral animals closest to chordates, can illuminate the evolutionary origins of various chordate traits to determine whether these were already present in a shared ancestor (the deuterostome ancestor) or were evolved within the chordate line. We find that an anteroposterior map of gene expression domains, representing 42 genes of neural patterning, is closely similar in hemichordates and chordates, though it is restricted to the neural ectoderm in chordates whereas in hemichordates, which have a diffuse nervous system, it encircles the whole body. This map allows an accurate alignment of the anterioposterior axes of members of the two groups. We propose that this map dates back at least to the deuterostome ancestor. The map of dorsoventral expression domains, organized along a Bmp-Chordin developmental axis, is also similar in the two groups in terms of many gene expression domains and for the placement of the gill slits, heart, and post-anal tail. The two groups, however, differ in two major respects along this axis. The nervous system and epidermis are not segregated into distinct territories in hemichordates, as they are in chordates, and furthermore, the mouth is on the Chordin side in hemichordates but the Bmp side in chordates. The dorsoventral dimension has undergone extensive modification in the chordate line, including centralization of the nervous system, segregation of epidermis, derivation of the notochord, perhaps from the gut midline, and relocation of the mouth. Based on the shared domain maps, speculations can be made for the remodeling of the body axis in the chordate line.

  19. The galaxy ancestor problem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Disney, M. J.; Lang, R. H.

    2012-11-01

    The Hubble Space Telescope (HST) findsgalaxies whose Tolman dimming exceeds 10 mag. Could evolution alone explain these as our ancestor galaxies or could they be representatives of quite a different dynasty whose descendants are no longer prominent today? We explore the latter hypothesis and argue that surface brightness selection effects naturally bring into focus quite different dynasties from different redshifts. Thus, the HST z = 7 galaxies could be examples of galaxies whose descendants are both too small and too choked with dust to be recognizable in our neighbourhood easily today. Conversely, the ancestors of the Milky Way and its obvious neighbours would have completely sunk below the sky at z > 1.2, unless they were more luminous in the past, although their diffused light could account for the missing re-ionization flux. This Succeeding Prominent Dynasties Hypothesis (SPDH) fits the existing observations both naturally and well even without evolution, including the bizarre distributions of galaxy surface brightness found in deep fields, the angular size ˜(1 + z)-1 law, 'downsizing' which turns out to be an 'illusion' in the sense that it does not imply evolution, 'infant mortality', that is, the discrepancy between stars born and stars seen, the existence of 'red nuggets', and finally the recently discovered and unexpected excess of quasar absorption line damped Lyα systems at high redshift. If galaxies were not significantly brighter in the past and the SPDH were true, then a large proportion of galaxies could remain sunk from sight, possibly at all redshifts, and these sunken galaxies could supply the missing re-ionization flux. We show that fishing these sunken galaxies out of the sky by their optical emissions alone is practically impossible, even when they are nearby. More ingenious methods are needed to detect them. It follows that disentangling galaxy evolution through studying ever higher redshift galaxies may be a forlorn hope because one could

  20. Enzymes, embryos, and ancestors.

    PubMed

    Gerhart, John

    2010-01-01

    In the 1950s, cellular regulatory mechanisms were newly recognized; with Arthur Pardee I investigated the initial enzyme of pyrimidine biosynthesis, which he discovered is controlled by feedback inhibition. The protein proved unusual in having separate but interacting sites for substrates and regulators. Howard Schachman and I dissociated the protein into different subunits, one binding regulators and one substrates. The enzyme became an early prime example of allostery. In developmental biology I studied the egg of the frog, Xenopus laevis, characterizing early processes of axis formation. My excellent students and I described cortical rotation, a 30° movement of the egg's cortex over tracks of parallel microtubules anchored to the underlying cytoplasmic core, and we perturbed it to alter Spemann's organizer and effect spectacular phenotypes. The entire sequence of events has been elucidated by others at the molecular level, making Xenopus a prime example of vertebrate axis formation. Marc Kirschner, Christopher Lowe, and I then compared hemichordate (half-chordate) and chordate early development. Despite anatomical-physiological differences, these groups share numerous steps of axis formation, ones that were probably already in use in their pre-Cambrian ancestor. I've thoroughly enjoyed exploring these areas during a 50-year period of great advances in biological sciences by the worldwide research community.

  1. Redeeming the lost voice of the ancestors.

    PubMed

    Troudart, Michal

    2012-09-01

    The Holocaust of the Jews in World War II involved not only the murder of 6 million Jews but also the traumatic destruction and wipe-out of whole communities, with their rich culture and tradition which had existed for centuries. In places where no one survived, it was almost impossible to reconstruct the collective memory of those communities. The voice of the ancestors was lost. As a daughter of Holocaust survivors, I have always felt the strong presence of the loss, not only of the murdered family members but also of the ancient colourful world of Eastern European Jews. I have always felt compelled to link back to that lost world. In the past three years, my journey to the pre-war past has become more intense. This article describes the double role of my journey: it is both an attempt to reconstruct, redeem and preserve the memory of the lost ancestors, and a personal journey to the echoes of my ancestors' voices within my soul.

  2. Reconstructing Mammalian Phylogenies: A Detailed Comparison of the Cytochrome b and Cytochrome Oxidase Subunit I Mitochondrial Genes

    PubMed Central

    Tobe, Shanan S.; Kitchener, Andrew C.; Linacre, Adrian M. T.

    2010-01-01

    The phylogeny and taxonomy of mammalian species were originally based upon shared or derived morphological characteristics. However, genetic analyses have more recently played an increasingly important role in confirming existing or establishing often radically different mammalian groupings and phylogenies. The two most commonly used genetic loci in species identification are the cytochrome oxidase I gene (COI) and the cytochrome b gene (cyt b). For the first time this study provides a detailed comparison of the effectiveness of these two loci in reconstructing the phylogeny of mammals at different levels of the taxonomic hierarchy in order to provide a basis for standardizing methodologies in the future. Interspecific and intraspecific variation is assessed and for the first time, to our knowledge, statistical confidence is applied to sequence comparisons. Comparison of the DNA sequences of 217 mammalian species reveals that cyt b more accurately reconstructs their phylogeny and known relationships between species based on other molecular and morphological analyses at Super Order, Order, Family and generic levels. Cyt b correctly assigned 95.85% of mammal species to Super Order, 94.31% to Order and 98.16% to Family compared to 78.34%, 93.36% and 96.93% respectively for COI. Cyt b also gives better resolution when separating species based on sequence data. Using a Kimura 2-parameter p-distance (x100) threshold of 1.5–2.5, cyt b gives a better resolution for separating species with a lower false positive rate and higher positive predictive value than those of COI. PMID:21152400

  3. [The mammalian TOR pathway is present in Trypanosoma cruzi. In silico reconstruction and possible functions].

    PubMed

    Digirolamo, Fabio A; Miranda, Mariana R; Bouvier, León A; Cámara, María M; Cánepa, Gaspar E; Pereira, Claudio A

    2012-01-01

    The mammalian TOR pathway ("Target Of Rapamycin") is a regulatory protein network involved in a wide range of processes including cell growth and differentiation, providing a functional switch between anabolic and catabolic cell metabolism. Trypanosoma cruzi, the etiologic agent of Chagas disease, has a complex life cycle with different morphological stages in various hosts. This life cycle implies that parasites have to deal with fluctuations in the extracellular medium that should be detected and counteracted adapting their metabolism. A candidate to be the mediator between the receptors / sensors of the environment and cellular adaptive response is the TOR pathway. In this paper we integrate the bibliographic data of the TOR pathway in trypanosomatids by in silico analysis (computer simulation of biological structures and processes) of the parasite's genome. Possible effectors and processes regulated by this metabolic pathway are also proposed. Given that the information on the mechanisms of signal transduction in trypanosomatids is scarce, we consider the model presented in this work may be a reference for future experimental work.

  4. Using Isotopes to Reconstruct Mammalian Diet, Migration and Paleoenvironment for Hominin Sites in Indonesia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wershow, H.; Janssen, R.; Vonhof, H.; Lubbe, J. V. D.; Joordens, J. J.; Koutamanis, D. S.; Puspaningrum, M. R.; de Vos, J.; Reijmer, J.

    2015-12-01

    Climate plays a prominent role in ecosystem development in the biodiversity hotspot Sundaland (Malaysia and western Indonesia) throughout the Quaternary. Recurrent isolation and connection of the islands to mainland Asia due to sea level fluctuations has enabled repeated biotic migrations and encouraged genetic speciation. These migration waves also brought Homo erectus to Java. Together with extensive and well-documented collections of other terrestrial species, these hominin fossils form faunal assemblages of which the paleoenvironmental and paleogeographical background is poorly known. Using carbon, oxygen and strontium isotopes, we have reconstructed the paleoenvironmental and paleoecological conditions of several Holocene and Pleistocene fossil sites on Sumatra and Java, Indonesia. Carbon (∂13C) and oxygen (∂18O) isotope analysis of well-preserved herbivore teeth enamel reveals a marked contrast between C3-dominated diets in warmer periods, and C4-dominated diets in cooler periods, reflecting the distinct changes in Sundaland vegetation cover between glacials and interglacials. These isotope patterns allow us to assign the appropriate climatic background to some of the older fossil assemblages from Java, for which dating uncertainty does not allow direct assignment to glacial or interglacial conditions. The stable isotope signatures of herbivores from Trinil and Sangiran, sites well-known for the fossil occurrence of Homo erectus, indicate glacial conditions. The isotope data of several H. erectus fossils from these sites seem to be in line with such an interpretation. Furthermore, we applied strontium (87Sr/86Sr) isotope analyses to a sample subset. The preliminary data show distinct Sr-isotope ratios for different sites, providing clues for the applicability of this isotope technique in detecting climate-related mobility of Sundaland fossil faunas.

  5. Windmills: Ancestors of the wind power generation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rossi, Cesare; Russo, Flavio; Savino, Sergio

    2016-12-01

    A brief description of the windmills from the second millennium BC to the Renaissance is presented. This survey is a part of several studies conducted by the authors on technology in the ancient world. The windmills are the first motor, other than human muscles, and are the ancestors of the modern wind turbines. Some authors' virtual reconstructions of old windmills are also presented. The paper shows that the operating principle of many modern machines had already been conceived in the ancient times by using a technology that was more advanced than expected, but with two main differences, as follows: Similar tasks were accomplished by using much less energy; and the environmental impact was nil or very low. Modern designers should sometimes consider simplicity rather than the use of a large amount of energy.

  6. Non-Darwinian estimation: My ancestors, my genes' ancestors

    PubMed Central

    Weiss, Kenneth M.; Long, Jeffrey C.

    2009-01-01

    There is widespread interest in characterizing the organization of human genetic variation around the world from a population perspective. Related to this are attempts to describe the pattern of genetic variation in the human species generally, including “recreational” genomics, the genome-based estimation of the ancestry of individuals. These approaches rest on subtle concepts of variation, time, and ancestry that are perhaps not widely appreciated. They share the idea that there are, or were, discrete panmictic human populations such that every person is either a member of such a population or is an admixed descendant of them. Ancestry fraction estimation is biased by assumptions about past and present human population structure, as when we trace ancestry to hypothetical unmixed ancestral populations, or assign an individual's ancestry to continental populations that are indistinguishable from classical “races.” Attempts to identify even individuals' local subpopulations are less precise than most (geneticists included) expect, because that is usually based on a small portion of a person's ancestry, relative to the much larger pool of comparably related ancestors. It is easier to show that two people have some relationship than to show who or where the actual ancestor was. There is an important distinction between individuals' demographic ancestry and the ancestry of their genes. Despite superficial appearances, these interpretations of genetic data are often based on typological rather than Darwinian thinking, raising important issues about the questions that are actually being asked. PMID:19411595

  7. Yeast Ancestral Genome Reconstructions: The Possibilities of Computational Methods

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tannier, Eric

    In 2006, a debate has risen on the question of the efficiency of bioinformatics methods to reconstruct mammalian ancestral genomes. Three years later, Gordon et al. (PLoS Genetics, 5(5), 2009) chose not to use automatic methods to build up the genome of a 100 million year old Saccharomyces cerevisiae ancestor. Their manually constructed ancestor provides a reference genome to test whether automatic methods are indeed unable to approach confident reconstructions. Adapting several methodological frameworks to the same yeast gene order data, I discuss the possibilities, differences and similarities of the available algorithms for ancestral genome reconstructions. The methods can be classified into two types: local and global. Studying the properties of both helps to clarify what we can expect from their usage. Both methods propose contiguous ancestral regions that come very close (> 95% identity) to the manually predicted ancestral yeast chromosomes, with a good coverage of the extant genomes.

  8. Evolution of mammalian diving capacity traced by myoglobin net surface charge.

    PubMed

    Mirceta, Scott; Signore, Anthony V; Burns, Jennifer M; Cossins, Andrew R; Campbell, Kevin L; Berenbrink, Michael

    2013-06-14

    Extended breath-hold endurance enables the exploitation of the aquatic niche by numerous mammalian lineages and is accomplished by elevated body oxygen stores and adaptations that promote their economical use. However, little is known regarding the molecular and evolutionary underpinnings of the high muscle myoglobin concentration phenotype of divers. We used ancestral sequence reconstruction to trace the evolution of this oxygen-storing protein across a 130-species mammalian phylogeny and reveal an adaptive molecular signature of elevated myoglobin net surface charge in diving species that is mechanistically linked with maximal myoglobin concentration. This observation provides insights into the tempo and routes to enhanced dive capacity evolution within the ancestors of each major mammalian aquatic lineage and infers amphibious ancestries of echidnas, moles, hyraxes, and elephants, offering a fresh perspective on the evolution of this iconic respiratory pigment.

  9. Tracking the complex flow of chromosome rearrangements from the Hominoidea Ancestor to extant Hylobates and Nomascus Gibbons by high-resolution synteny mapping.

    PubMed

    Misceo, Doriana; Capozzi, Oronzo; Roberto, Roberta; Dell'oglio, Maria P; Rocchi, Mariano; Stanyon, Roscoe; Archidiacono, Nicoletta

    2008-09-01

    In this study we characterized the extension, reciprocal arrangement, and orientation of syntenic chromosomal segments in the lar gibbon (Hylobates lar, HLA) by hybridization of a panel of approximately 1000 human BAC clones. Each lar gibbon rearrangement was defined by a splitting BAC clone or by two overlapping clones flanking the breakpoint. A reconstruction of the synteny arrangement of the last common ancestor of all living lesser apes was made by combining these data with previous results in Nomascus leucogenys, Hoolock hoolock, and Symphalangus syndactylus. The definition of the ancestral synteny organization facilitated tracking the cascade of chromosomal changes from the Hominoidea ancestor to the present day karyotype of Hylobates and Nomascus. Each chromosomal rearrangement could be placed within an approximate phylogenetic and temporal framework. We identified 12 lar-specific rearrangements and five previously undescribed rearrangements that occurred in the Hylobatidae ancestor. The majority of the chromosomal differences between lar gibbons and humans are due to rearrangements that occurred in the Hylobatidae ancestor (38 events), consistent with the hypothesis that the genus Hylobates is the most recently evolved lesser ape genus. The rates of rearrangements in gibbons are 10 to 20 times higher than the mammalian default rate. Segmental duplication may be a driving force in gibbon chromosome evolution, because a consistent number of rearrangements involves pericentromeric regions (10 events) and centromere inactivation (seven events). Both phenomena can be reasonably supposed to have strongly contributed to the euchromatic dispersal of segmental duplications typical of pericentromeric regions. This hypothesis can be more fully tested when the sequence of this gibbon species becomes available. The detailed synteny map provided here will, in turn, substantially facilitate sequence assembly efforts.

  10. Volumetric label-free imaging and 3D reconstruction of mammalian cochlea based on two-photon excitation fluorescence microscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Xianzeng; Geng, Yang; Ye, Qing; Zhan, Zhenlin; Xie, Shusen

    2013-11-01

    The visualization of the delicate structure and spatial relationship of intracochlear sensory cells has relied on the laborious procedures of tissue excision, fixation, sectioning and staining for light and electron microscopy. Confocal microscopy is advantageous for its high resolution and deep penetration depth, yet disadvantageous due to the necessity of exogenous labeling. In this study, we present the volumetric imaging of rat cochlea without exogenous dyes using a near-infrared femtosecond laser as the excitation mechanism and endogenous two-photon excitation fluorescence (TPEF) as the contrast mechanism. We find that TPEF exhibits strong contrast, allowing cellular and even subcellular resolution imaging of the cochlea, differentiating cell types, visualizing delicate structures and the radial nerve fiber. Our results further demonstrate that 3D reconstruction rendered with z-stacks of optical sections enables better revealment of fine structures and spatial relationships, and easily performed morphometric analysis. The TPEF-based optical biopsy technique provides great potential for new and sensitive diagnostic tools for hearing loss or hearing disorders, especially when combined with fiber-based microendoscopy.

  11. Apparatus Named After Our Academic Ancestors, III

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Greenslade, Thomas B.

    2014-09-01

    My academic ancestors in physics have called on me once more to tell you about the apparatus that they devised, and that many of you have used in your demonstrations and labs. This article is about apparatus named after François Arago, Heinrich Helmholtz, Leon Foucault, and James Watt.

  12. Apparatus Named after Our Academic Ancestors, III

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Greenslade, Thomas B., Jr.

    2014-01-01

    My academic ancestors in physics have called on me once more to tell you about the apparatus that they devised, and that many of you have used in your demonstrations and labs. This article is about apparatus named after François Arago, Heinrich Helmholtz, Leon Foucault, and James Watt.

  13. The Five Ancestors--Book 1: Tiger

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stone, Jeff

    2004-01-01

    Losing a job is an awfully low point--until it turns into the opportunity to pursue writing full time, and a book like "The Five Ancestors: Tiger" results. Jeff Stone looks back to his own experience as a young reader and taps that experience to help frame his own writing. An intriguing snapshot of his new book follows.

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

    PubMed

    Koonin, Eugene V

    2015-10-05

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

  15. An unexpected recent ancestor of unisexual Ambystoma.

    PubMed

    Robertson, Alexander V; Ramsden, Cadhla; Niedzwiecki, John; Fu, Jinzhong; Bogart, James P

    2006-10-01

    Previous research has shown that members of the unisexual hybrid complex of the genus Ambystoma possess a mitochondrial genome that is unrelated to their nuclear parental species, but the origin of this mitochondrion has remained unclear. We used a 744-bp fragment of the mitochondrial gene cytochrome b within a comparative phylogenetic framework to infer the maternal ancestor of this unisexual lineage. By examining a broader range of species than has previously been compared, we were able to uncover a recent maternal ancestor to this complex. Unexpectedly, Ambystoma barbouri, a species whose nuclear DNA has not been identified in the unisexuals, was found to be the recent maternal ancestor of the individuals examined through the discovery of a shared mtDNA haplotype between the unisexuals and A. barbouri. Based on a combination of sequence data and glacial patterning, we estimate that the unisexual lineage probably originated less than 25 000 years ago. In addition, all unisexuals examined showed extremely similar mtDNA sequences and the resultant phylogeny was consistent with a single origin for this lineage. These results confirm previous suggestions that the unisexual Ambystoma complex was formed from a hybridization event in which the nuclear DNA of the original maternal species was subsequently lost.

  16. Mammalian development in space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ronca, April E.

    2003-01-01

    Life on Earth, and thus the reproductive and ontogenetic processes of all extant species and their ancestors, evolved under the constant influence of the Earth's l g gravitational field. These considerations raise important questions about the ability of mammals to reproduce and develop in space. In this chapter, I review the current state of our knowledge of spaceflight effects on developing mammals. Recent studies are revealing the first insights into how the space environment affects critical phases of mammalian reproduction and development, viz., those events surrounding fertilization, embryogenesis, pregnancy, birth, postnatal maturation and parental care. This review emphasizes fetal and early postnatal life, the developmental epochs for which the greatest amounts of mammalian spaceflight data have been amassed. The maternal-offspring system, the coordinated aggregate of mother and young comprising mammalian development, is of primary importance during these early, formative developmental phases. The existing research supports the view that biologically meaningful interactions between mothers and offspring are changed in the weightlessness of space. These changes may, in turn, cloud interpretations of spaceflight effects on developing offspring. Whereas studies of mid-pregnant rats in space have been extraordinarily successful, studies of young rat litters launched at 9 days of postnatal age or earlier, have been encumbered with problems related to the design of in-flight caging and compromised maternal-offspring interactions. Possibilities for mammalian birth in space, an event that has not yet transpired, are considered. In the aggregate, the results indicate a strong need for new studies of mammalian reproduction and development in space. Habitat development and systematic ground-based testing are important prerequisites to future research with young postnatal rodents in space. Together, the findings support the view that the environment within which young

  17. Mammalian development in space.

    PubMed

    Ronca, April E

    2003-01-01

    Life on Earth, and thus the reproductive and ontogenetic processes of all extant species and their ancestors, evolved under the constant influence of the Earth's l g gravitational field. These considerations raise important questions about the ability of mammals to reproduce and develop in space. In this chapter, I review the current state of our knowledge of spaceflight effects on developing mammals. Recent studies are revealing the first insights into how the space environment affects critical phases of mammalian reproduction and development, viz., those events surrounding fertilization, embryogenesis, pregnancy, birth, postnatal maturation and parental care. This review emphasizes fetal and early postnatal life, the developmental epochs for which the greatest amounts of mammalian spaceflight data have been amassed. The maternal-offspring system, the coordinated aggregate of mother and young comprising mammalian development, is of primary importance during these early, formative developmental phases. The existing research supports the view that biologically meaningful interactions between mothers and offspring are changed in the weightlessness of space. These changes may, in turn, cloud interpretations of spaceflight effects on developing offspring. Whereas studies of mid-pregnant rats in space have been extraordinarily successful, studies of young rat litters launched at 9 days of postnatal age or earlier, have been encumbered with problems related to the design of in-flight caging and compromised maternal-offspring interactions. Possibilities for mammalian birth in space, an event that has not yet transpired, are considered. In the aggregate, the results indicate a strong need for new studies of mammalian reproduction and development in space. Habitat development and systematic ground-based testing are important prerequisites to future research with young postnatal rodents in space. Together, the findings support the view that the environment within which young

  18. Single origin of Malagasy Carnivora from an African ancestor.

    PubMed

    Yoder, Anne D; Burns, Melissa M; Zehr, Sarah; Delefosse, Thomas; Veron, Geraldine; Goodman, Steven M; Flynn, John J

    2003-02-13

    The Carnivora are one of only four orders of terrestrial mammals living in Madagascar today. All four (carnivorans, primates, rodents and lipotyphlan insectivores) are placental mammals with limited means for dispersal, yet they occur on a large island that has been surrounded by a formidable oceanic barrier for at least 88 million years, predating the age of origin for any of these groups. Even so, as many as four colonizations of Madagascar have been proposed for the Carnivora alone. The mystery of the island's mammalian origins is confounded by its poor Tertiary fossil record, which leaves us with no direct means for estimating dates of initial diversification. Here we use a multi-gene phylogenetic analysis to show that Malagasy carnivorans are monophyletic and thus the product of a single colonization of Madagascar by an African ancestor. Furthermore, a bayesian analysis of divergence ages for Malagasy carnivorans and lemuriforms indicates that their respective colonizations were temporally separated by tens of millions of years. We therefore conclude that a single event, such as vicariance or common dispersal, cannot explain the presence of both groups in Madagascar.

  19. Markov-chain approach to the distribution of ancestors in species of biparental reproduction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Caruso, M.; Jarne, C.

    2014-08-01

    We studied how to obtain a distribution for the number of ancestors in species of sexual reproduction. Present models concentrate on the estimation of distributions repetitions of ancestors in genealogical trees. It has been shown that it is not possible to reconstruct the genealogical history of each species along all its generations by means of a geometric progression. This analysis demonstrates that it is possible to rebuild the tree of progenitors by modeling the problem with a Markov chain. For each generation, the maximum number of possible ancestors is different. This presents huge problems for the resolution. We found a solution through a dilation of the sample space, although the distribution defined there takes smaller values with respect to the initial problem. In order to correct the distribution for each generation, we introduced the invariance under a gauge (local) group of dilations. These ideas can be used to study the interaction of several processes and provide a new approach on the problem of the common ancestor. In the same direction, this model also provides some elements that can be used to improve models of animal reproduction.

  20. Major fungal lineages are derived from lichen symbiotic ancestors.

    PubMed

    Lutzoni, F; Pagel, M; Reeb, V

    2001-06-21

    About one-fifth of all known extant fungal species form obligate symbiotic associations with green algae, cyanobacteria or with both photobionts. These symbioses, known as lichens, are one way for fungi to meet their requirement for carbohydrates. Lichens are widely believed to have arisen independently on several occasions, accounting for the high diversity and mixed occurrence of lichenized and non-lichenized (42 and 58%, respectively) fungal species within the Ascomycota. Depending on the taxonomic classification chosen, 15-18 orders of the Ascomycota include lichen-forming taxa, and 8-11 of these orders (representing about 60% of the Ascomycota species) contain both lichenized and non-lichenized species. Here we report a phylogenetic comparative analysis of the Ascomycota, a phylum that includes greater than 98% of known lichenized fungal species. Using a Bayesian phylogenetic tree sampling methodology combined with a statistical model of trait evolution, we take into account uncertainty about the phylogenetic tree and ancestral state reconstructions. Our results show that lichens evolved earlier than believed, and that gains of lichenization have been infrequent during Ascomycota evolution, but have been followed by multiple independent losses of the lichen symbiosis. As a consequence, major Ascomycota lineages of exclusively non-lichen-forming species are derived from lichen-forming ancestors. These species include taxa with important benefits and detriments to humans, such as Penicillium and Aspergillus.

  1. The Hunt for Dwarf Galaxies' Ancestors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2016-01-01

    Dwarf galaxies are typically very faint, and are therefore hard to find. Given that, what are our chances of finding their distant ancestors, located billions of light-years away? A recent study aims to find out.Ancient CounterpartsDwarf galaxies are a hot topic right now, especially as we discover more and more of them nearby. Besides being great places to investigate a variety of astrophysical processes, local group dwarf galaxies are also representative of the most common type of galaxy in the universe. For many of these dwarf galaxies, their low masses and typically old stellar populations suggest that most of their stars were formed early in the universes history, and further star formation was suppressed when the universe was reionized at redshifts of z ~ 610. If this is true, most dwarf galaxies are essentially fossils: theyve evolved little since that point.To test this theory, wed like to find counterparts to our local group dwarf galaxies at these higher redshifts of z = 6 or 7. But dwarf galaxies, since they dont exhibit lots of active star formation, have very low surface brightnesses making them very difficult to detect. What are the chances that current or future telescope sensitivities will allow us to detect these? Thats the question Anna Patej and Abraham Loeb, two theorists at Harvard University, have addressed in a recent study.Entering a New RegimeThe surface brightness vs. size for 73 local dwarf galaxies scaled back to redshifts of z=6 (top) and z=7 (bottom). So far weve been able to observe high-redshift galaxies within the boxed region of the parameter space. JWST will open the shaded region of the parameter space, which includes some of the dwarf galaxies. [Patej Loeb 2015]Starting from observational data for 87 Local-Group dwarf galaxies, Patej and Loeb used a stellar population synthesis code to evolve the galaxies backward in time to redshifts of z = 6 and 7. Next, they narrowed this sample to only those dwarfs for which most star

  2. The existence and abundance of ghost ancestors in biparental populations.

    PubMed

    Gravel, Simon; Steel, Mike

    2015-05-01

    In a randomly-mating biparental population of size N there are, with high probability, individuals who are genealogical ancestors of every extant individual within approximately log2(N) generations into the past. We use this result of J. Chang to prove a curious corollary under standard models of recombination: there exist, with high probability, individuals within a constant multiple of log2(N) generations into the past who are simultaneously (i) genealogical ancestors of each of the individuals at the present, and (ii) genetic ancestors to none of the individuals at the present. Such ancestral individuals-ancestors of everyone today that left no genetic trace-represent 'ghost' ancestors in a strong sense. In this short note, we use simple analytical argument and simulations to estimate how many such individuals exist in finite Wright-Fisher populations.

  3. A Detailed History of Intron-rich Eukaryotic Ancestors Inferred from a Global Survey of 100 Complete Genomes

    PubMed Central

    Csuros, Miklos; Rogozin, Igor B.; Koonin, Eugene V.

    2011-01-01

    Protein-coding genes in eukaryotes are interrupted by introns, but intron densities widely differ between eukaryotic lineages. Vertebrates, some invertebrates and green plants have intron-rich genes, with 6–7 introns per kilobase of coding sequence, whereas most of the other eukaryotes have intron-poor genes. We reconstructed the history of intron gain and loss using a probabilistic Markov model (Markov Chain Monte Carlo, MCMC) on 245 orthologous genes from 99 genomes representing the three of the five supergroups of eukaryotes for which multiple genome sequences are available. Intron-rich ancestors are confidently reconstructed for each major group, with 53 to 74% of the human intron density inferred with 95% confidence for the Last Eukaryotic Common Ancestor (LECA). The results of the MCMC reconstruction are compared with the reconstructions obtained using Maximum Likelihood (ML) and Dollo parsimony methods. An excellent agreement between the MCMC and ML inferences is demonstrated whereas Dollo parsimony introduces a noticeable bias in the estimations, typically yielding lower ancestral intron densities than MCMC and ML. Evolution of eukaryotic genes was dominated by intron loss, with substantial gain only at the bases of several major branches including plants and animals. The highest intron density, 120 to 130% of the human value, is inferred for the last common ancestor of animals. The reconstruction shows that the entire line of descent from LECA to mammals was intron-rich, a state conducive to the evolution of alternative splicing. PMID:21935348

  4. A detailed history of intron-rich eukaryotic ancestors inferred from a global survey of 100 complete genomes.

    PubMed

    Csuros, Miklos; Rogozin, Igor B; Koonin, Eugene V

    2011-09-01

    Protein-coding genes in eukaryotes are interrupted by introns, but intron densities widely differ between eukaryotic lineages. Vertebrates, some invertebrates and green plants have intron-rich genes, with 6-7 introns per kilobase of coding sequence, whereas most of the other eukaryotes have intron-poor genes. We reconstructed the history of intron gain and loss using a probabilistic Markov model (Markov Chain Monte Carlo, MCMC) on 245 orthologous genes from 99 genomes representing the three of the five supergroups of eukaryotes for which multiple genome sequences are available. Intron-rich ancestors are confidently reconstructed for each major group, with 53 to 74% of the human intron density inferred with 95% confidence for the Last Eukaryotic Common Ancestor (LECA). The results of the MCMC reconstruction are compared with the reconstructions obtained using Maximum Likelihood (ML) and Dollo parsimony methods. An excellent agreement between the MCMC and ML inferences is demonstrated whereas Dollo parsimony introduces a noticeable bias in the estimations, typically yielding lower ancestral intron densities than MCMC and ML. Evolution of eukaryotic genes was dominated by intron loss, with substantial gain only at the bases of several major branches including plants and animals. The highest intron density, 120 to 130% of the human value, is inferred for the last common ancestor of animals. The reconstruction shows that the entire line of descent from LECA to mammals was intron-rich, a state conducive to the evolution of alternative splicing.

  5. Mammalian pheromones.

    PubMed

    Liberles, Stephen D

    2014-01-01

    Mammalian pheromones control a myriad of innate social behaviors and acutely regulate hormone levels. Responses to pheromones are highly robust, reproducible, and stereotyped and likely involve developmentally predetermined neural circuits. Here, I review several facets of pheromone transduction in mammals, including (a) chemosensory receptors and signaling components of the main olfactory epithelium and vomeronasal organ involved in pheromone detection; (b) pheromone-activated neural circuits subject to sex-specific and state-dependent modulation; and (c) the striking chemical diversity of mammalian pheromones, which range from small, volatile molecules and sulfated steroids to large families of proteins. Finally, I review (d) molecular mechanisms underlying various behavioral and endocrine responses, including modulation of puberty and estrous; control of reproduction, aggression, suckling, and parental behaviors; individual recognition; and distinguishing of own species from predators, competitors, and prey. Deconstruction of pheromone transduction mechanisms provides a critical foundation for understanding how odor response pathways generate instinctive behaviors.

  6. Mammalian Pheromones

    PubMed Central

    Liberles, Stephen D.

    2015-01-01

    Mammalian pheromones control a myriad of innate social behaviors and acutely regulate hormone levels. Responses to pheromones are highly robust, reproducible, and stereotyped and likely involve developmentally predetermined neural circuits. Here, I review several facets of pheromone transduction in mammals, including (a) chemosensory receptors and signaling components of the main olfactory epithelium and vomeronasal organ involved in pheromone detection; (b) pheromone-activated neural circuits subject to sex-specific and state-dependent modulation; and (c) the striking chemical diversity of mammalian pheromones, which range from small, volatile molecules and sulfated steroids to large families of proteins. Finally, I review (d ) molecular mechanisms underlying various behavioral and endocrine responses, including modulation of puberty and estrous; control of reproduction, aggression, suckling, and parental behaviors; individual recognition; and distinguishing of own species from predators, competitors, and prey. Deconstruction of pheromone transduction mechanisms provides a critical foundation for understanding how odor response pathways generate instinctive behaviors. PMID:23988175

  7. Proposed Ancestors of Phage Nucleic Acid Packaging Motors (and Cells)

    PubMed Central

    Serwer, Philip

    2011-01-01

    I present a hypothesis that begins with the proposal that abiotic ancestors of phage RNA and DNA packaging systems (and cells) include mobile shells with an internal, molecule-transporting cavity. The foundations of this hypothesis include the conjecture that current nucleic acid packaging systems have imprints from abiotic ancestors. The abiotic shells (1) initially imbibe and later also bind and transport organic molecules, thereby providing a means for producing molecular interactions that are links in the chain of events that produces ancestors to the first molecules that are both information carrying and enzymatically active, and (2) are subsequently scaffolds on which proteins assemble to form ancestors common to both shells of viral capsids and cell membranes. Emergence of cells occurs via aggregation and merger of shells and internal contents. The hypothesis continues by using proposed imprints of abiotic and biotic ancestors to deduce an ancestral thermal ratchet-based DNA packaging motor that subsequently evolves to integrate a DNA packaging ATPase that provides a power stroke. PMID:21994778

  8. LXRα and LXRβ Nuclear Receptors Evolved in the Common Ancestor of Gnathostomes

    PubMed Central

    Fonseca, Elza; Ruivo, Raquel; Lopes-Marques, Mónica; Zhang, Huixian; Santos, Miguel M.; Venkatesh, Byrappa

    2017-01-01

    Nuclear receptors (NRs) regulate numerous aspects of the endocrine system. They mediate endogenous and exogenous cues, ensuring a homeostatic control of development and metabolism. Gene duplication, loss and mutation have shaped the repertoire and function of NRs in metazoans. Here, we examine the evolution of a pivotal orchestrator of cholesterol metabolism in vertebrates, the liver X receptors (LXRs). Previous studies suggested that LXRα and LXRβ genes emerged in the mammalian ancestor. However, we show through genome analysis and functional assay that bona fide LXRα and LXRβ orthologues are present in reptiles, coelacanth and chondrichthyans but not in cyclostomes. These findings show that LXR duplicated before gnathostome radiation, followed by asymmetric paralogue loss in some lineages. We suggest that a tighter control of cholesterol levels in vertebrates was achieved through the exploitation of a wider range of oxysterols, an ability contingent on ligand-binding pocket remodeling. PMID:28057729

  9. Distribution of repetitions of ancestors in genealogical trees

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Derrida, Bernard; Manrubia, Susanna C.; Zanette, Damián H.

    2000-06-01

    We calculate the probability distribution of repetitions of ancestors in a genealogical tree for simple neutral models of a closed population with sexual reproduction and non-overlapping generations. Each ancestor at generation g in the past has a weight w which is (up to a normalization) the number of times this ancestor appears in the genealogical tree of an individual at present. The distribution Pg( w) of these weights reaches a stationary shape P∞( w), for large g, i.e., for a large number of generations back in the past. For small w, P ∞(w) is a power law ( P∞( w)∼ wβ), with a non-trivial exponent β which can be computed exactly using a standard procedure of the renormalization group approach. Some extensions of the model are discussed and the effect of these variants on the shape of P∞( w) are analysed.

  10. Mammalian skin evolution: a reevaluation.

    PubMed

    Maderson, P F A

    2003-06-01

    A 1972 model for the evolutionary origin of hair suggested a primary mechanoreceptor role improving behavioral thermoregulation contributed to the success of late Paleozoic mammal-like reptiles. An insulatory role appeared secondarily subsequent to protohair multiplication. That model is updated in light of new data on (a) palaeoecology of mammalian ancestors; (b) involvement of HRPs in keratinization; (c) lipogenic lamellar bodies that form the barrier to cutaneous water loss; and (d) growth factors involved in hair follicle embryogenesis and turnover. It is now proposed that multiplication of sensory protohairs caused by mutations in patterning genes initially protected the delicate barrier tissues and eventually produced the minimal morphology necessary for an insulatory pelage. The latter permitted Mesozoic mammals to occupy the nocturnal niche 'in the shadow of dinosaurs'. When the giant reptiles became extinct, mammals underwent rapid radiation and reemerged as the dominant terrestrial vertebrates.

  11. The Ancestor Project: Aboriginal Computer Education through Storytelling

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Weston, Marla; Biin, Dianne

    2013-01-01

    The goal of the ANCESTOR program is to use digital storytelling as a means of promoting an interest in technology careers for Aboriginal learners, as well as increasing cultural literacy. A curriculum was developed and first tested with Aboriginal students at the LÁU,WELNEW Tribal School near Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. Based on feedback…

  12. Mammalian sleep

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Staunton, Hugh

    2005-05-01

    This review examines the biological background to the development of ideas on rapid eye movement sleep (REM sleep), so-called paradoxical sleep (PS), and its relation to dreaming. Aspects of the phenomenon which are discussed include physiological changes and their anatomical location, the effects of total and selective sleep deprivation in the human and animal, and REM sleep behavior disorder, the latter with its clinical manifestations in the human. Although dreaming also occurs in other sleep phases (non-REM or NREM sleep), in the human, there is a contingent relation between REM sleep and dreaming. Thus, REM is taken as a marker for dreaming and as REM is distributed ubiquitously throughout the mammalian class, it is suggested that other mammals also dream. It is suggested that the overall function of REM sleep/dreaming is more important than the content of the individual dream; its function is to place the dreamer protagonist/observer on the topographical world. This has importance for the developing infant who needs to develop a sense of self and separateness from the world which it requires to navigate and from which it is separated for long periods in sleep. Dreaming may also serve to maintain a sense of ‘I’ness or “self” in the adult, in whom a fragility of this faculty is revealed in neurological disorders.

  13. Trigonometric Transforms for Image Reconstruction

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1998-06-01

    applying trigo - nometric transforms to image reconstruction problems. Many existing linear image reconstruc- tion techniques rely on knowledge of...ancestors. The research performed for this dissertation represents the first time the symmetric convolution-multiplication property of trigo - nometric...Fourier domain. The traditional representation of these filters will be similar to new trigo - nometric transform versions derived in later chapters

  14. A proposal of the proteome before the last universal common ancestor (LUCA)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Farias, Sávio Torres; Rêgo, Thais Gaudêncio; José, Marco V.

    2016-01-01

    The search for understanding the biological nature of the last universal common ancestor (LUCA) has been a theoretical challenge and has sparked intense debate in the scientific community. We reconstructed the ancestral sequences of tRNAs in order to test the hypothesis that these molecules originated the first genes. The results showed that the proteome before LUCA may have been composed of basal energy metabolism, namely, compounds with three carbons in the glycolytic pathway, which operated as a distribution centre of substrates for the development of metabolic pathways of nucleotides, lipids and amino acids. Thus, we present a proposal for metabolism in organisms before LUCA that was the initial core for the assembly of further metabolic pathways.

  15. Deciding Termination for Ancestor Match- Bounded String Rewriting Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Geser, Alfons; Hofbauer, Dieter; Waldmann, Johannes

    2005-01-01

    Termination of a string rewriting system can be characterized by termination on suitable recursively defined languages. This kind of termination criteria has been criticized for its lack of automation. In an earlier paper we have shown how to construct an automated termination criterion if the recursion is aligned with the rewrite relation. We have demonstrated the technique with Dershowitz's forward closure criterion. In this paper we show that a different approach is suitable when the recursion is aligned with the inverse of the rewrite relation. We apply this idea to Kurth's ancestor graphs and obtain ancestor match-bounded string rewriting systems. Termination is shown to be decidable for this class. The resulting method improves upon those based on match-boundedness or inverse match-boundedness.

  16. A rock-inhabiting ancestor for mutualistic and pathogen-rich fungal lineages.

    PubMed

    Gueidan, C; Villaseñor, C R; de Hoog, G S; Gorbushina, A A; Untereiner, W A; Lutzoni, F

    2008-01-01

    Rock surfaces are unique terrestrial habitats in which rapid changes in the intensity of radiation, temperature, water supply and nutrient availability challenge the survival of microbes. A specialised, but diverse group of free-living, melanised fungi are amongst the persistent settlers of bare rocks. Multigene phylogenetic analyses were used to study relationships of ascomycetes from a variety of substrates, with a dataset including a broad sampling of rock dwellers from different geographical locations. Rock-inhabiting fungi appear particularly diverse in the early diverging lineages of the orders Chaetothyriales and Verrucariales. Although these orders share a most recent common ancestor, their lifestyles are strikingly different. Verrucariales are mostly lichen-forming fungi, while Chaetothyriales, by contrast, are best known as opportunistic pathogens of vertebrates (e.g. Cladophialophora bantiana and Exophiala dermatitidis, both agents of fatal brain infections) and saprophytes. The rock-dwelling habit is shown here to be key to the evolution of these two ecologically disparate orders. The most recent common ancestor of Verrucariales and Chaetothyriales is reconstructed as a non-lichenised rock-inhabitant. Ancestral state reconstructions suggest Verrucariales as one of the independent ascomycetes group where lichenisation has evolved on a hostile rock surface that might have favored this shift to a symbiotic lifestyle. Rock-inhabiting fungi are also ancestral to opportunistic pathogens, as they are found in the early diverging lineages of Chaetothyriales. In Chaetothyriales and Verrucariales, specific morphological and physiological traits (here referred to as extremotolerance) evolved in response to stresses in extreme conditions prevailing on rock surfaces. These factors facilitated colonisation of various substrates including the brains of vertebrates by opportunistic fungal pathogens, as well as helped establishment of a stable lichen symbiosis.

  17. A rock-inhabiting ancestor for mutualistic and pathogen-rich fungal lineages

    PubMed Central

    Gueidan, C.; Villaseñor, C. R.; de Hoog, G. S.; Gorbushina, A. A.; Untereiner, W. A.; Lutzoni, F.

    2008-01-01

    Rock surfaces are unique terrestrial habitats in which rapid changes in the intensity of radiation, temperature, water supply and nutrient availability challenge the survival of microbes. A specialised, but diverse group of free-living, melanised fungi are amongst the persistent settlers of bare rocks. Multigene phylogenetic analyses were used to study relationships of ascomycetes from a variety of substrates, with a dataset including a broad sampling of rock dwellers from different geographical locations. Rock-inhabiting fungi appear particularly diverse in the early diverging lineages of the orders Chaetothyriales and Verrucariales. Although these orders share a most recent common ancestor, their lifestyles are strikingly different. Verrucariales are mostly lichen-forming fungi, while Chaetothyriales, by contrast, are best known as opportunistic pathogens of vertebrates (e.g. Cladophialophora bantiana and Exophiala dermatitidis, both agents of fatal brain infections) and saprophytes. The rock-dwelling habit is shown here to be key to the evolution of these two ecologically disparate orders. The most recent common ancestor of Verrucariales and Chaetothyriales is reconstructed as a non-lichenised rock-inhabitant. Ancestral state reconstructions suggest Verrucariales as one of the independent ascomycetes group where lichenisation has evolved on a hostile rock surface that might have favored this shift to a symbiotic lifestyle. Rock-inhabiting fungi are also ancestral to opportunistic pathogens, as they are found in the early diverging lineages of Chaetothyriales. In Chaetothyriales and Verrucariales, specific morphological and physiological traits (here referred to as extremotolerance) evolved in response to stresses in extreme conditions prevailing on rock surfaces. These factors facilitated colonisation of various substrates including the brains of vertebrates by opportunistic fungal pathogens, as well as helped establishment of a stable lichen symbiosis. PMID

  18. Aplacophoran Mollusks Evolved from Ancestors with Polyplacophoran-like Features

    PubMed Central

    Scherholz, Maik; Redl, Emanuel; Wollesen, Tim; Todt, Christiane; Wanninger, Andreas

    2013-01-01

    Summary Mollusca is an animal phylum with vast morphological diversity and includes worm-shaped aplacophorans, snails, bivalves, and the complex cephalopods [1]. The interrelationships of these class-level taxa are still contentious [2, 3], but recent phylogenomic analyses suggest a dichotomy at the base of Mollusca, resulting in a monophyletic Aculifera (comprising the shell-less, sclerite-bearing aplacophorans and the eight-shelled polyplacophorans) and Conchifera (all other, primarily univalved groups) [4, 5]. The Aculifera concept has recently gained support via description of the fossil Kulindroplax, which shows both aplacophoran- and polyplacophoran-like features and suggests that the aplacophorans originated from a shelled ancestor [6], but the overall morphology of the last common aculiferan ancestor remains obscure. Here we show that larvae of the aplacophoran Wirenia argentea have several sets of muscles previously known only from polyplacophoran mollusks. Most of these are lost during metamorphosis, and we interpret them as ontogenetic remnants of an ancestor with a complex, polyplacophoran-like musculature. Moreover, we find that the first seven pairs of dorsoventral muscles develop synchronously in Wirenia, similar to juvenile polyplacophorans [7], which supports the conclusions based on the seven-shelled Kulindroplax. Accordingly, we argue that the simple body plan of recent aplacophorans is the result of simplification and does not represent a basal molluscan condition. PMID:24139743

  19. Ancestor reverence and mental health in South Africa.

    PubMed

    Berg, Astrid

    2003-06-01

    The great majority of South Africa's people consult traditional healers. The deeper meaning of much traditional healing centres on ancestor reverence. This belief system and its accompanying rituals may positively influence the mental health of the individual and the community. Among traditional Xhosa-speaking peoples, the relationship with the ancestors is given expression in life cycle rituals that have much in common with Western psychotherapeutic principles and practices. The common thread that underpins many rituals is that of making links via concrete, literal means. Examples include the participation of the community in the healing of the individual; the linking of body and mind through dancing and drumming. Dreams form an essential connection between conscious life and the unconscious. Understanding the psychological depth of these practices is important so that a respectful relationship between Western-trained professionals and traditional healers can develop. Analytical psychology, with its notion of the collective unconscious has a particular contribution to make to cross-cultural understanding. The ancestors may be understood as archetypal representations of the collective unconscious.

  20. Evolutionary paths to mammalian cochleae.

    PubMed

    Manley, Geoffrey A

    2012-12-01

    Evolution of the cochlea and high-frequency hearing (>20 kHz; ultrasonic to humans) in mammals has been a subject of research for many years. Recent advances in paleontological techniques, especially the use of micro-CT scans, now provide important new insights that are here reviewed. True mammals arose more than 200 million years (Ma) ago. Of these, three lineages survived into recent geological times. These animals uniquely developed three middle ear ossicles, but these ossicles were not initially freely suspended as in modern mammals. The earliest mammalian cochleae were only about 2 mm long and contained a lagena macula. In the multituberculate and monotreme mammalian lineages, the cochlea remained relatively short and did not coil, even in modern representatives. In the lineage leading to modern therians (placental and marsupial mammals), cochlear coiling did develop, but only after a period of at least 60 Ma. Even Late Jurassic mammals show only a 270 ° cochlear coil and a cochlear canal length of merely 3 mm. Comparisons of modern organisms, mammalian ancestors, and the state of the middle ear strongly suggest that high-frequency hearing (>20 kHz) was not realized until the early Cretaceous (~125 Ma). At that time, therian mammals arose and possessed a fully coiled cochlea. The evolution of modern features of the middle ear and cochlea in the many later lineages of therians was, however, a mosaic and different features arose at different times. In parallel with cochlear structural evolution, prestins in therian mammals evolved into effective components of a new motor system. Ultrasonic hearing developed quite late-the earliest bat cochleae (~60 Ma) did not show features characteristic of those of modern bats that are sensitive to high ultrasonic frequencies.

  1. Diet and the evolution of the earliest human ancestors.

    PubMed

    Teaford, M F; Ungar, P S

    2000-12-05

    Over the past decade, discussions of the evolution of the earliest human ancestors have focused on the locomotion of the australopithecines. Recent discoveries in a broad range of disciplines have raised important questions about the influence of ecological factors in early human evolution. Here we trace the cranial and dental traits of the early australopithecines through time, to show that between 4.4 million and 2.3 million years ago, the dietary capabilities of the earliest hominids changed dramatically, leaving them well suited for life in a variety of habitats and able to cope with significant changes in resource availability associated with long-term and short-term climatic fluctuations.

  2. Fossil hominin shoulders support an African ape-like last common ancestor of humans and chimpanzees

    PubMed Central

    Young, Nathan M.; Capellini, Terence D.; Roach, Neil T.; Alemseged, Zeresenay

    2015-01-01

    Reconstructing the behavioral shifts that drove hominin evolution requires knowledge of the timing, magnitude, and direction of anatomical changes over the past ∼6–7 million years. These reconstructions depend on assumptions regarding the morphotype of the Homo–Pan last common ancestor (LCA). However, there is little consensus for the LCA, with proposed models ranging from African ape to orangutan or generalized Miocene ape-like. The ancestral state of the shoulder is of particular interest because it is functionally associated with important behavioral shifts in hominins, such as reduced arboreality, high-speed throwing, and tool use. However, previous morphometric analyses of both living and fossil taxa have yielded contradictory results. Here, we generated a 3D morphospace of ape and human scapular shape to plot evolutionary trajectories, predict ancestral morphologies, and directly test alternative evolutionary hypotheses using the hominin fossil evidence. We show that the most parsimonious model for the evolution of hominin shoulder shape starts with an African ape-like ancestral state. We propose that the shoulder evolved gradually along a single morphocline, achieving modern human-like configuration and function within the genus Homo. These data are consistent with a slow, progressive loss of arboreality and increased tool use throughout human evolution. PMID:26351685

  3. Brucella spp. of amphibians comprise genomically diverse motile strains competent for replication in macrophages and survival in mammalian hosts

    PubMed Central

    Al Dahouk, Sascha; Köhler, Stephan; Occhialini, Alessandra; Jiménez de Bagüés, María Pilar; Hammerl, Jens Andre; Eisenberg, Tobias; Vergnaud, Gilles; Cloeckaert, Axel; Zygmunt, Michel S.; Whatmore, Adrian M.; Melzer, Falk; Drees, Kevin P.; Foster, Jeffrey T.; Wattam, Alice R.; Scholz, Holger C.

    2017-01-01

    Twenty-one small Gram-negative motile coccobacilli were isolated from 15 systemically diseased African bullfrogs (Pyxicephalus edulis), and were initially identified as Ochrobactrum anthropi by standard microbiological identification systems. Phylogenetic reconstructions using combined molecular analyses and comparative whole genome analysis of the most diverse of the bullfrog strains verified affiliation with the genus Brucella and placed the isolates in a cluster containing B. inopinata and the other non-classical Brucella species but also revealed significant genetic differences within the group. Four representative but molecularly and phenotypically diverse strains were used for in vitro and in vivo infection experiments. All readily multiplied in macrophage-like murine J774-cells, and their overall intramacrophagic growth rate was comparable to that of B. inopinata BO1 and slightly higher than that of B. microti CCM 4915. In the BALB/c murine model of infection these strains replicated in both spleen and liver, but were less efficient than B. suis 1330. Some strains survived in the mammalian host for up to 12 weeks. The heterogeneity of these novel strains hampers a single species description but their phenotypic and genetic features suggest that they represent an evolutionary link between a soil-associated ancestor and the mammalian host-adapted pathogenic Brucella species. PMID:28300153

  4. Origin and Evolution of Water Oxidation before the Last Common Ancestor of the Cyanobacteria

    PubMed Central

    Cardona, Tanai; Murray, James W.; Rutherford, A. William

    2015-01-01

    Photosystem II, the water oxidizing enzyme, altered the course of evolution by filling the atmosphere with oxygen. Here, we reconstruct the origin and evolution of water oxidation at an unprecedented level of detail by studying the phylogeny of all D1 subunits, the main protein coordinating the water oxidizing cluster (Mn4CaO5) of Photosystem II. We show that D1 exists in several forms making well-defined clades, some of which could have evolved before the origin of water oxidation and presenting many atypical characteristics. The most ancient form is found in the genome of Gloeobacter kilaueensis JS-1 and this has a C-terminus with a higher sequence identity to D2 than to any other D1. Two other groups of early evolving D1 correspond to those expressed under prolonged far-red illumination and in darkness. These atypical D1 forms are characterized by a dramatically different Mn4CaO5 binding site and a Photosystem II containing such a site may assemble an unconventional metal cluster. The first D1 forms with a full set of ligands to the Mn4CaO5 cluster are grouped with D1 proteins expressed only under low oxygen concentrations and the latest evolving form is the dominant type of D1 found in all cyanobacteria and plastids. In addition, we show that the plastid ancestor had a D1 more similar to those in early branching Synechococcus. We suggest each one of these forms of D1 originated from transitional forms at different stages toward the innovation and optimization of water oxidation before the last common ancestor of all known cyanobacteria. PMID:25657330

  5. Origin and Evolution of Water Oxidation before the Last Common Ancestor of the Cyanobacteria.

    PubMed

    Cardona, Tanai; Murray, James W; Rutherford, A William

    2015-05-01

    Photosystem II, the water oxidizing enzyme, altered the course of evolution by filling the atmosphere with oxygen. Here, we reconstruct the origin and evolution of water oxidation at an unprecedented level of detail by studying the phylogeny of all D1 subunits, the main protein coordinating the water oxidizing cluster (Mn4CaO5) of Photosystem II. We show that D1 exists in several forms making well-defined clades, some of which could have evolved before the origin of water oxidation and presenting many atypical characteristics. The most ancient form is found in the genome of Gloeobacter kilaueensis JS-1 and this has a C-terminus with a higher sequence identity to D2 than to any other D1. Two other groups of early evolving D1 correspond to those expressed under prolonged far-red illumination and in darkness. These atypical D1 forms are characterized by a dramatically different Mn4CaO5 binding site and a Photosystem II containing such a site may assemble an unconventional metal cluster. The first D1 forms with a full set of ligands to the Mn4CaO5 cluster are grouped with D1 proteins expressed only under low oxygen concentrations and the latest evolving form is the dominant type of D1 found in all cyanobacteria and plastids. In addition, we show that the plastid ancestor had a D1 more similar to those in early branching Synechococcus. We suggest each one of these forms of D1 originated from transitional forms at different stages toward the innovation and optimization of water oxidation before the last common ancestor of all known cyanobacteria.

  6. Reptiles and mammals have differentially retained long conserved noncoding sequences from the amniote ancestor.

    PubMed

    Janes, D E; Chapus, C; Gondo, Y; Clayton, D F; Sinha, S; Blatti, C A; Organ, C L; Fujita, M K; Balakrishnan, C N; Edwards, S V

    2011-01-01

    Many noncoding regions of genomes appear to be essential to genome function. Conservation of large numbers of noncoding sequences has been reported repeatedly among mammals but not thus far among birds and reptiles. By searching genomes of chicken (Gallus gallus), zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata), and green anole (Anolis carolinensis), we quantified the conservation among birds and reptiles and across amniotes of long, conserved noncoding sequences (LCNS), which we define as sequences ≥500 bp in length and exhibiting ≥95% similarity between species. We found 4,294 LCNS shared between chicken and zebra finch and 574 LCNS shared by the two birds and Anolis. The percent of genomes comprised by LCNS in the two birds (0.0024%) is notably higher than the percent in mammals (<0.0003% to <0.001%), differences that we show may be explained in part by differences in genome-wide substitution rates. We reconstruct a large number of LCNS for the amniote ancestor (ca. 8,630) and hypothesize differential loss and substantial turnover of these sites in descendent lineages. By contrast, we estimated a small role for recruitment of LCNS via acquisition of novel functions over time. Across amniotes, LCNS are significantly enriched with transcription factor binding sites for many developmental genes, and 2.9% of LCNS shared between the two birds show evidence of expression in brain expressed sequence tag databases. These results show that the rate of retention of LCNS from the amniote ancestor differs between mammals and Reptilia (including birds) and that this may reflect differing roles and constraints in gene regulation.

  7. Reptiles and Mammals Have Differentially Retained Long Conserved Noncoding Sequences from the Amniote Ancestor

    PubMed Central

    Janes, D.E.; Chapus, C.; Gondo, Y.; Clayton, D.F.; Sinha, S.; Blatti, C.A.; Organ, C.L.; Fujita, M.K.; Balakrishnan, C.N.; Edwards, S.V.

    2011-01-01

    Many noncoding regions of genomes appear to be essential to genome function. Conservation of large numbers of noncoding sequences has been reported repeatedly among mammals but not thus far among birds and reptiles. By searching genomes of chicken (Gallus gallus), zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata), and green anole (Anolis carolinensis), we quantified the conservation among birds and reptiles and across amniotes of long, conserved noncoding sequences (LCNS), which we define as sequences ≥500 bp in length and exhibiting ≥95% similarity between species. We found 4,294 LCNS shared between chicken and zebra finch and 574 LCNS shared by the two birds and Anolis. The percent of genomes comprised by LCNS in the two birds (0.0024%) is notably higher than the percent in mammals (<0.0003% to <0.001%), differences that we show may be explained in part by differences in genome-wide substitution rates. We reconstruct a large number of LCNS for the amniote ancestor (ca. 8,630) and hypothesize differential loss and substantial turnover of these sites in descendent lineages. By contrast, we estimated a small role for recruitment of LCNS via acquisition of novel functions over time. Across amniotes, LCNS are significantly enriched with transcription factor binding sites for many developmental genes, and 2.9% of LCNS shared between the two birds show evidence of expression in brain expressed sequence tag databases. These results show that the rate of retention of LCNS from the amniote ancestor differs between mammals and Reptilia (including birds) and that this may reflect differing roles and constraints in gene regulation. PMID:21183607

  8. Ontogeny of the maxilla in Neanderthals and their ancestors.

    PubMed

    Lacruz, Rodrigo S; Bromage, Timothy G; O'Higgins, Paul; Arsuaga, Juan-Luis; Stringer, Chris; Godinho, Ricardo Miguel; Warshaw, Johanna; Martínez, Ignacio; Gracia-Tellez, Ana; de Castro, José María Bermúdez; Carbonell, Eudald

    2015-12-07

    Neanderthals had large and projecting (prognathic) faces similar to those of their putative ancestors from Sima de los Huesos (SH) and different from the retracted modern human face. When such differences arose during development and the morphogenetic modifications involved are unknown. We show that maxillary growth remodelling (bone formation and resorption) of the Devil's Tower (Gibraltar 2) and La Quina 18 Neanderthals and four SH hominins, all sub-adults, show extensive bone deposition, whereas in modern humans extensive osteoclastic bone resorption is found in the same regions. This morphogenetic difference is evident by ∼5 years of age. Modern human faces are distinct from those of the Neanderthal and SH fossils in part because their postnatal growth processes differ markedly. The growth remodelling identified in these fossil hominins is shared with Australopithecus and early Homo but not with modern humans suggesting that the modern human face is developmentally derived.

  9. Ontogeny of the maxilla in Neanderthals and their ancestors

    PubMed Central

    Lacruz, Rodrigo S.; Bromage, Timothy G.; O'Higgins, Paul; Arsuaga, Juan-Luis; Stringer, Chris; Godinho, Ricardo Miguel; Warshaw, Johanna; Martínez, Ignacio; Gracia-Tellez, Ana; de Castro, José María Bermúdez; Carbonell, Eudald

    2015-01-01

    Neanderthals had large and projecting (prognathic) faces similar to those of their putative ancestors from Sima de los Huesos (SH) and different from the retracted modern human face. When such differences arose during development and the morphogenetic modifications involved are unknown. We show that maxillary growth remodelling (bone formation and resorption) of the Devil's Tower (Gibraltar 2) and La Quina 18 Neanderthals and four SH hominins, all sub-adults, show extensive bone deposition, whereas in modern humans extensive osteoclastic bone resorption is found in the same regions. This morphogenetic difference is evident by ∼5 years of age. Modern human faces are distinct from those of the Neanderthal and SH fossils in part because their postnatal growth processes differ markedly. The growth remodelling identified in these fossil hominins is shared with Australopithecus and early Homo but not with modern humans suggesting that the modern human face is developmentally derived. PMID:26639346

  10. Unraveling the processes shaping mammalian gut microbiomes over evolutionary time

    PubMed Central

    Groussin, Mathieu; Mazel, Florent; Sanders, Jon G.; Smillie, Chris S.; Lavergne, Sébastien; Thuiller, Wilfried; Alm, Eric J.

    2017-01-01

    Whether mammal–microbiome interactions are persistent and specific over evolutionary time is controversial. Here we show that host phylogeny and major dietary shifts have affected the distribution of different gut bacterial lineages and did so on vastly different bacterial phylogenetic resolutions. Diet mostly influences the acquisition of ancient and large microbial lineages. Conversely, correlation with host phylogeny is mostly seen among more recently diverged bacterial lineages, consistent with processes operating at similar timescales to host evolution. Considering microbiomes at appropriate phylogenetic scales allows us to model their evolution along the mammalian tree and to infer ancient diets from the predicted microbiomes of mammalian ancestors. Phylogenetic analyses support co-speciation as having a significant role in the evolution of mammalian gut microbiome compositions. Highly co-speciating bacterial genera are also associated with immune diseases in humans, laying a path for future studies that probe these co-speciating bacteria for signs of co-evolution. PMID:28230052

  11. Unraveling the processes shaping mammalian gut microbiomes over evolutionary time.

    PubMed

    Groussin, Mathieu; Mazel, Florent; Sanders, Jon G; Smillie, Chris S; Lavergne, Sébastien; Thuiller, Wilfried; Alm, Eric J

    2017-02-23

    Whether mammal-microbiome interactions are persistent and specific over evolutionary time is controversial. Here we show that host phylogeny and major dietary shifts have affected the distribution of different gut bacterial lineages and did so on vastly different bacterial phylogenetic resolutions. Diet mostly influences the acquisition of ancient and large microbial lineages. Conversely, correlation with host phylogeny is mostly seen among more recently diverged bacterial lineages, consistent with processes operating at similar timescales to host evolution. Considering microbiomes at appropriate phylogenetic scales allows us to model their evolution along the mammalian tree and to infer ancient diets from the predicted microbiomes of mammalian ancestors. Phylogenetic analyses support co-speciation as having a significant role in the evolution of mammalian gut microbiome compositions. Highly co-speciating bacterial genera are also associated with immune diseases in humans, laying a path for future studies that probe these co-speciating bacteria for signs of co-evolution.

  12. Evolutionary tree reconstruction

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cheeseman, Peter; Kanefsky, Bob

    1990-01-01

    It is described how Minimum Description Length (MDL) can be applied to the problem of DNA and protein evolutionary tree reconstruction. If there is a set of mutations that transform a common ancestor into a set of the known sequences, and this description is shorter than the information to encode the known sequences directly, then strong evidence for an evolutionary relationship has been found. A heuristic algorithm is described that searches for the simplest tree (smallest MDL) that finds close to optimal trees on the test data. Various ways of extending the MDL theory to more complex evolutionary relationships are discussed.

  13. Reconstructing pedigrees: a combinatorial perspective.

    PubMed

    Steel, Mike; Hein, Jotun

    2006-06-07

    A pedigree is a directed graph that displays the relationship between individuals according to their parentage. We derive a combinatorial result that shows how any pedigree-up to individuals who have no extant (present-day) ancestors-can be reconstructed from (sex-labelled) pedigrees that describe the ancestry of single extant individuals and pairs of extant individuals. Furthermore, this reconstruction can be done in polynomial time. We also provide an example to show that the corresponding reconstruction result does not hold for pedigrees that are not sex-labelled. We then show how any pedigree can also be reconstructed from two functions that just describe certain circuits in the pedigree. Finally, we obtain an enumeration result for pedigrees that is relevant to the question of how many segregating sites are needed to reconstruct pedigrees.

  14. Crops gone wild: evolution of weeds and invasives from domesticated ancestors

    PubMed Central

    Ellstrand, Norman C; Heredia, Sylvia M; Leak-Garcia, Janet A; Heraty, Joanne M; Burger, Jutta C; Yao, Li; Nohzadeh-Malakshah, Sahar; Ridley, Caroline E

    2010-01-01

    The evolution of problematic plants, both weeds and invasives, is a topic of increasing interest. Plants that have evolved from domesticated ancestors have certain advantages for study. Because of their economic importance, domesticated plants are generally well-characterized and readily available for ecogenetic comparison with their wild descendants. Thus, the evolutionary history of crop descendants has the potential to be reconstructed in some detail. Furthermore, growing crop progenitors with their problematic descendants in a common environment allows for the identification of significant evolutionary differences that correlate with weediness or invasiveness. We sought well-established examples of invasives and weeds for which genetic and/or ethnobotanical evidence has confirmed their evolution from domesticates. We found surprisingly few cases, only 13. We examine our list for generalizations and then some selected cases to reveal how plant pests have evolved from domesticates. Despite their potential utility, crop descendants remain underexploited for evolutionary study. Promising evolutionary research opportunities for these systems are abundant and worthy of pursuit. PMID:25567942

  15. The facial skeleton of the chimpanzee-human last common ancestor.

    PubMed

    Cobb, Samuel N

    2008-04-01

    This review uses the current morphological evidence to evaluate the facial morphology of the hypothetical last common ancestor (LCA) of the chimpanzee/bonobo (panin) and human (hominin) lineages. Some of the problems involved in reconstructing ancestral morphologies so close to the formation of a lineage are discussed. These include the prevalence of homoplasy and poor phylogenetic resolution due to a lack of defining derived features. Consequently the list of hypothetical features expected in the face of the LCA is very limited beyond its hypothesized similarity to extant Pan. It is not possible to determine with any confidence whether the facial morphology of any of the current candidate LCA taxa (Ardipithecus kadabba, Ardipithecus ramidus, Orrorin tugenensis and Sahelanthropus tchadensis) is representative of the LCA, or a stem hominin, or a stem panin or, in some cases, a hominid predating the emergence of the hominin lineage. The major evolutionary trends in the hominin lineage subsequent to the LCA are discussed in relation to the dental arcade and dentition, subnasal morphology and the size, position and prognathism of the facial skeleton.

  16. Scapular shape of extant hominoids and the African ape/modern human last common ancestor.

    PubMed

    Green, David J; Spiewak, Ted A; Seitelman, Brielle; Gunz, Philipp

    2016-05-01

    Newly discovered early hominin fossil scapulae have bolstered investigations of scapular shape, which have long been used to interpret behavioral variation among primates. However, unexpected similarities between Pongo and Homo - particularly in scapular spine orientation - have raised questions about the functional utility of scapular morphology and its phylogenetic context in the hominin lineage. Not surprisingly, significant disagreement surrounds disparate morphological reconstructions of the modern human/African ape last common ancestor (LCA). Our study utilizes geometric morphometric (GM) approaches - two employing homologous, anatomical landmarks and a "spine-free" alternative using 98 sliding semilandmarks along the boundary of the subscapular fossa. The landmark-based "wireframe" GM analysis principally sorted groups by spine orientation: Homo and Pongo were similar to one another with more transversely-oriented spines as compared to Hylobates and the African apes. In contrast, Homo and Gorilla clustered together in our semilandmark analysis with superoinferiorly broad blades. Pan scapulae were similar, but had more mediolaterally compressed blades and laterally-positioned superior angles. Hylobates was superoinferiorly narrow, yet obliquely expanded relative to the vertebral border. Pongo scapulae were unique among hominoids in being nearly as broad as they were long. Previously documented 'convergence' of Homo and Pongo scapulae appears to be principally driven by similarities in spine orientation, rather than overall blade shape. Therefore, we contend that it is more parsimonious to reconstruct the African ape/Homo LCA scapula as being Gorilla-like, especially in light of similar characterizations of certain fossil hominin scapulae. Accordingly, the evolution of Pan (highly oblique spine and laterally-situated superior angle) and Homo (transversely-oriented spine) scapular morphology would have involved relatively minor shifts from this ancestral

  17. Cassava genome from a wild ancestor to cultivated varieties.

    PubMed

    Wang, Wenquan; Feng, Binxiao; Xiao, Jingfa; Xia, Zhiqiang; Zhou, Xincheng; Li, Pinghua; Zhang, Weixiong; Wang, Ying; Møller, Birger Lindberg; Zhang, Peng; Luo, Ming-Cheng; Xiao, Gong; Liu, Jingxing; Yang, Jun; Chen, Songbi; Rabinowicz, Pablo D; Chen, Xin; Zhang, Hong-Bin; Ceballos, Henan; Lou, Qunfeng; Zou, Meiling; Carvalho, Luiz J C B; Zeng, Changying; Xia, Jing; Sun, Shixiang; Fu, Yuhua; Wang, Haiyan; Lu, Cheng; Ruan, Mengbin; Zhou, Shuigeng; Wu, Zhicheng; Liu, Hui; Kannangara, Rubini Maya; Jørgensen, Kirsten; Neale, Rebecca Louise; Bonde, Maya; Heinz, Nanna; Zhu, Wenli; Wang, Shujuan; Zhang, Yang; Pan, Kun; Wen, Mingfu; Ma, Ping-An; Li, Zhengxu; Hu, Meizhen; Liao, Wenbin; Hu, Wenbin; Zhang, Shengkui; Pei, Jinli; Guo, Anping; Guo, Jianchun; Zhang, Jiaming; Zhang, Zhengwen; Ye, Jianqiu; Ou, Wenjun; Ma, Yaqin; Liu, Xinyue; Tallon, Luke J; Galens, Kevin; Ott, Sandra; Huang, Jie; Xue, Jingjing; An, Feifei; Yao, Qingqun; Lu, Xiaojing; Fregene, Martin; López-Lavalle, L Augusto Becerra; Wu, Jiajie; You, Frank M; Chen, Meili; Hu, Songnian; Wu, Guojiang; Zhong, Silin; Ling, Peng; Chen, Yeyuan; Wang, Qinghuang; Liu, Guodao; Liu, Bin; Li, Kaimian; Peng, Ming

    2014-10-10

    Cassava is a major tropical food crop in the Euphorbiaceae family that has high carbohydrate production potential and adaptability to diverse environments. Here we present the draft genome sequences of a wild ancestor and a domesticated variety of cassava and comparative analyses with a partial inbred line. We identify 1,584 and 1,678 gene models specific to the wild and domesticated varieties, respectively, and discover high heterozygosity and millions of single-nucleotide variations. Our analyses reveal that genes involved in photosynthesis, starch accumulation and abiotic stresses have been positively selected, whereas those involved in cell wall biosynthesis and secondary metabolism, including cyanogenic glucoside formation, have been negatively selected in the cultivated varieties, reflecting the result of natural selection and domestication. Differences in microRNA genes and retrotransposon regulation could partly explain an increased carbon flux towards starch accumulation and reduced cyanogenic glucoside accumulation in domesticated cassava. These results may contribute to genetic improvement of cassava through better understanding of its biology.

  18. Cassava genome from a wild ancestor to cultivated varieties

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Wenquan; Feng, Binxiao; Xiao, Jingfa; Xia, Zhiqiang; Zhou, Xincheng; Li, Pinghua; Zhang, Weixiong; Wang, Ying; Møller, Birger Lindberg; Zhang, Peng; Luo, Ming-Cheng; Xiao, Gong; Liu, Jingxing; Yang, Jun; Chen, Songbi; Rabinowicz, Pablo D.; Chen, Xin; Zhang, Hong-Bin; Ceballos, Henan; Lou, Qunfeng; Zou, Meiling; Carvalho, Luiz J.C.B.; Zeng, Changying; Xia, Jing; Sun, Shixiang; Fu, Yuhua; Wang, Haiyan; Lu, Cheng; Ruan, Mengbin; Zhou, Shuigeng; Wu, Zhicheng; Liu, Hui; Kannangara, Rubini Maya; Jørgensen, Kirsten; Neale, Rebecca Louise; Bonde, Maya; Heinz, Nanna; Zhu, Wenli; Wang, Shujuan; Zhang, Yang; Pan, Kun; Wen, Mingfu; Ma, Ping-An; Li, Zhengxu; Hu, Meizhen; Liao, Wenbin; Hu, Wenbin; Zhang, Shengkui; Pei, Jinli; Guo, Anping; Guo, Jianchun; Zhang, Jiaming; Zhang, Zhengwen; Ye, Jianqiu; Ou, Wenjun; Ma, Yaqin; Liu, Xinyue; Tallon, Luke J.; Galens, Kevin; Ott, Sandra; Huang, Jie; Xue, Jingjing; An, Feifei; Yao, Qingqun; Lu, Xiaojing; Fregene, Martin; López-Lavalle, L. Augusto Becerra; Wu, Jiajie; You, Frank M.; Chen, Meili; Hu, Songnian; Wu, Guojiang; Zhong, Silin; Ling, Peng; Chen, Yeyuan; Wang, Qinghuang; Liu, Guodao; Liu, Bin; Li, Kaimian; Peng, Ming

    2014-01-01

    Cassava is a major tropical food crop in the Euphorbiaceae family that has high carbohydrate production potential and adaptability to diverse environments. Here we present the draft genome sequences of a wild ancestor and a domesticated variety of cassava and comparative analyses with a partial inbred line. We identify 1,584 and 1,678 gene models specific to the wild and domesticated varieties, respectively, and discover high heterozygosity and millions of single-nucleotide variations. Our analyses reveal that genes involved in photosynthesis, starch accumulation and abiotic stresses have been positively selected, whereas those involved in cell wall biosynthesis and secondary metabolism, including cyanogenic glucoside formation, have been negatively selected in the cultivated varieties, reflecting the result of natural selection and domestication. Differences in microRNA genes and retrotransposon regulation could partly explain an increased carbon flux towards starch accumulation and reduced cyanogenic glucoside accumulation in domesticated cassava. These results may contribute to genetic improvement of cassava through better understanding of its biology. PMID:25300236

  19. Algal ancestor of land plants was preadapted for symbiosis.

    PubMed

    Delaux, Pierre-Marc; Radhakrishnan, Guru V; Jayaraman, Dhileepkumar; Cheema, Jitender; Malbreil, Mathilde; Volkening, Jeremy D; Sekimoto, Hiroyuki; Nishiyama, Tomoaki; Melkonian, Michael; Pokorny, Lisa; Rothfels, Carl J; Sederoff, Heike Winter; Stevenson, Dennis W; Surek, Barbara; Zhang, Yong; Sussman, Michael R; Dunand, Christophe; Morris, Richard J; Roux, Christophe; Wong, Gane Ka-Shu; Oldroyd, Giles E D; Ané, Jean-Michel

    2015-10-27

    Colonization of land by plants was a major transition on Earth, but the developmental and genetic innovations required for this transition remain unknown. Physiological studies and the fossil record strongly suggest that the ability of the first land plants to form symbiotic associations with beneficial fungi was one of these critical innovations. In angiosperms, genes required for the perception and transduction of diffusible fungal signals for root colonization and for nutrient exchange have been characterized. However, the origin of these genes and their potential correlation with land colonization remain elusive. A comprehensive phylogenetic analysis of 259 transcriptomes and 10 green algal and basal land plant genomes, coupled with the characterization of the evolutionary path leading to the appearance of a key regulator, a calcium- and calmodulin-dependent protein kinase, showed that the symbiotic signaling pathway predated the first land plants. In contrast, downstream genes required for root colonization and their specific expression pattern probably appeared subsequent to the colonization of land. We conclude that the most recent common ancestor of extant land plants and green algae was preadapted for symbiotic associations. Subsequent improvement of this precursor stage in early land plants through rounds of gene duplication led to the acquisition of additional pathways and the ability to form a fully functional arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis.

  20. Multiple origins of viral capsid proteins from cellular ancestors

    PubMed Central

    Koonin, Eugene V.

    2017-01-01

    Viruses are the most abundant biological entities on earth and show remarkable diversity of genome sequences, replication and expression strategies, and virion structures. Evolutionary genomics of viruses revealed many unexpected connections but the general scenario(s) for the evolution of the virosphere remains a matter of intense debate among proponents of the cellular regression, escaped genes, and primordial virus world hypotheses. A comprehensive sequence and structure analysis of major virion proteins indicates that they evolved on about 20 independent occasions, and in some of these cases likely ancestors are identifiable among the proteins of cellular organisms. Virus genomes typically consist of distinct structural and replication modules that recombine frequently and can have different evolutionary trajectories. The present analysis suggests that, although the replication modules of at least some classes of viruses might descend from primordial selfish genetic elements, bona fide viruses evolved on multiple, independent occasions throughout the course of evolution by the recruitment of diverse host proteins that became major virion components. PMID:28265094

  1. Mexican papita viroid: putative ancestor of crop viroids.

    PubMed Central

    Martínez-Soriano, J P; Galindo-Alonso, J; Maroon, C J; Yucel, I; Smith, D R; Diener, T O

    1996-01-01

    The potato spindle tuber disease was first observed early in the 20th century in the northeastern United States and shown, in 1971, to be incited by a viroid, potato spindle tuber viroid (PSTVd). No wild-plant PSTVd reservoirs have been identified; thus, the initial source of PSTVd infecting potatoes has remained a mystery. Several variants of a novel viroid, designated Mexican papita viroid (MPVd), have now been isolated from Solanum cardiophyllum Lindl. (papita güera, cimantli) plants growing wild in the Mexican state of Aguascalientes. MPVd's nucleotide sequence is most closely related to those of the tomato planta macho viroid (TPMVd) and PSTVd. From TPMVd, MPVd may be distinguished on the basis of biological properties, such as replication and symptom formation in certain differential hosts. Phylogenetic and ecological data indicate that MPVd and certain viroids now affecting crop plants, such as TPMVd, PSTVd, and possibly others, have a common ancestor. We hypothesize that commercial potatoes grown in the United States have become viroid-infected by chance transfer of MPVd or a similar viroid from endemically infected wild solanaceous plants imported from Mexico as germplasm, conceivably from plants known to have been introduced from Mexico to the United States late in the 19th century in efforts to identify genetic resistance to the potato late blight fungus, Phytophthora infestans. Images Fig. 1 PMID:8790341

  2. Algal ancestor of land plants was preadapted for symbiosis

    PubMed Central

    Delaux, Pierre-Marc; Radhakrishnan, Guru V.; Jayaraman, Dhileepkumar; Cheema, Jitender; Malbreil, Mathilde; Volkening, Jeremy D.; Sekimoto, Hiroyuki; Nishiyama, Tomoaki; Melkonian, Michael; Pokorny, Lisa; Rothfels, Carl J.; Sederoff, Heike Winter; Stevenson, Dennis W.; Surek, Barbara; Zhang, Yong; Sussman, Michael R.; Dunand, Christophe; Morris, Richard J.; Roux, Christophe; Wong, Gane Ka-Shu; Oldroyd, Giles E. D.; Ané, Jean-Michel

    2015-01-01

    Colonization of land by plants was a major transition on Earth, but the developmental and genetic innovations required for this transition remain unknown. Physiological studies and the fossil record strongly suggest that the ability of the first land plants to form symbiotic associations with beneficial fungi was one of these critical innovations. In angiosperms, genes required for the perception and transduction of diffusible fungal signals for root colonization and for nutrient exchange have been characterized. However, the origin of these genes and their potential correlation with land colonization remain elusive. A comprehensive phylogenetic analysis of 259 transcriptomes and 10 green algal and basal land plant genomes, coupled with the characterization of the evolutionary path leading to the appearance of a key regulator, a calcium- and calmodulin-dependent protein kinase, showed that the symbiotic signaling pathway predated the first land plants. In contrast, downstream genes required for root colonization and their specific expression pattern probably appeared subsequent to the colonization of land. We conclude that the most recent common ancestor of extant land plants and green algae was preadapted for symbiotic associations. Subsequent improvement of this precursor stage in early land plants through rounds of gene duplication led to the acquisition of additional pathways and the ability to form a fully functional arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis. PMID:26438870

  3. Accelerated Evolution of Enhancer Hotspots in the Mammal Ancestor.

    PubMed

    Holloway, Alisha K; Bruneau, Benoit G; Sukonnik, Tatyana; Rubenstein, John L; Pollard, Katherine S

    2016-04-01

    Mammals have evolved remarkably different sensory, reproductive, metabolic, and skeletal systems. To explore the genetic basis for these differences, we developed a comparative genomics approach to scan whole-genome multiple sequence alignments to identify regions that evolved rapidly in an ancestral lineage but are conserved within extant species. This pattern suggests that ancestral changes in function were maintained in descendants. After applying this test to therian mammals, we identified 4,797 accelerated regions, many of which are noncoding and located near developmental transcription factors. We then used mouse transgenic reporter assays to test if noncoding accelerated regions are enhancers and to determine how therian-specific substitutions affect their activity in vivo. We discovered enhancers with expression specific to the therian version in brain regions involved in the hormonal control of milk ejection, uterine contractions, blood pressure, temperature, and visual processing. This work underscores the idea that changes in developmental gene expression are important for mammalian evolution, and it pinpoints candidate genes for unique aspects of mammalian biology.

  4. Accelerated Evolution of Enhancer Hotspots in the Mammal Ancestor

    PubMed Central

    Holloway, Alisha K.; Bruneau, Benoit G.; Sukonnik, Tatyana; Rubenstein, John L.; Pollard, Katherine S.

    2016-01-01

    Mammals have evolved remarkably different sensory, reproductive, metabolic, and skeletal systems. To explore the genetic basis for these differences, we developed a comparative genomics approach to scan whole-genome multiple sequence alignments to identify regions that evolved rapidly in an ancestral lineage but are conserved within extant species. This pattern suggests that ancestral changes in function were maintained in descendants. After applying this test to therian mammals, we identified 4,797 accelerated regions, many of which are noncoding and located near developmental transcription factors. We then used mouse transgenic reporter assays to test if noncoding accelerated regions are enhancers and to determine how therian-specific substitutions affect their activity in vivo. We discovered enhancers with expression specific to the therian version in brain regions involved in the hormonal control of milk ejection, uterine contractions, blood pressure, temperature, and visual processing. This work underscores the idea that changes in developmental gene expression are important for mammalian evolution, and it pinpoints candidate genes for unique aspects of mammalian biology. PMID:26715627

  5. Structure–Function Relationships of Glycoprotein Hormones and Their Subunits’ Ancestors

    PubMed Central

    Cahoreau, Claire; Klett, Danièle; Combarnous, Yves

    2015-01-01

    Glycoprotein hormones (GPHs) are the most complex molecules with hormonal activity. They exist only in vertebrates but the genes encoding their subunits’ ancestors are found in most vertebrate and invertebrate species although their roles are still unknown. In the present report, we review the available structural and functional data concerning GPHs and their subunits’ ancestors. PMID:25767463

  6. The Malthusian parameter of ascents: What prevents the exponential increase of one’s ancestors?

    PubMed Central

    Ohno, Susumu

    1996-01-01

    The reason that the indefinite exponential increase in the number of one’s ancestors does not take place is found in the law of sibling interference, which can be expressed by the following simple equation:\\documentclass[12pt]{minimal} \\usepackage{amsmath} \\usepackage{wasysym} \\usepackage{amsfonts} \\usepackage{amssymb} \\usepackage{amsbsy} \\usepackage{mathrsfs} \\setlength{\\oddsidemargin}{-69pt} \\begin{document} \\begin{equation*}\\begin{matrix}{\\mathit{N}}_{{\\mathit{n}}} \\enskip & \\\\ {\\mathit{{\\blacksquare}}} \\enskip & \\\\ {\\mathit{ASZ}} \\enskip & \\end{matrix} {\\mathrm{\\hspace{.167em}{\\times}\\hspace{.167em}2\\hspace{.167em}=\\hspace{.167em}}}{\\mathit{N_{n+1},}}\\end{equation*}\\end{document} where Nn is the number of ancestors in the nth generation, ASZ is the average sibling size of these ancestors, and Nn+1 is the number of ancestors in the next older generation (n + 1). Accordingly, the exponential increase in the number of one’s ancestors is an initial anomaly that occurs while ASZ remains at 1. Once ASZ begins to exceed 1, the rate of increase in the number of ancestors is progressively curtailed, falling further and further behind the exponential increase rate. Eventually, ASZ reaches 2, and at that point, the number of ancestors stops increasing for two generations. These two generations, named AN SA and AN SA + 1, are the most critical in the ancestry, for one’s ancestors at that point come to represent all the progeny-produced adults of the entire ancestral population. Thereafter, the fate of one’s ancestors becomes the fate of the entire population. If the population to which one belongs is a successful, slowly expanding one, the number of ancestors would slowly decline as you move toward the remote past. This is because ABZ would exceed 2. Only when ABZ is less than 2 would the number of ancestors increase beyond the AN SA and AN SA + 1 generations. Since the above is an indication of a failing population on the way to

  7. Experimental Evolution of a Facultative Thermophile from a Mesophilic Ancestor

    PubMed Central

    Blaby, Ian K.; Lyons, Benjamin J.; Wroclawska-Hughes, Ewa; Phillips, Grier C. F.; Pyle, Tyler P.; Chamberlin, Stephen G.; Benner, Steven A.; Lyons, Thomas J.

    2012-01-01

    Experimental evolution via continuous culture is a powerful approach to the alteration of complex phenotypes, such as optimal/maximal growth temperatures. The benefit of this approach is that phenotypic selection is tied to growth rate, allowing the production of optimized strains. Herein, we demonstrate the use of a recently described long-term culture apparatus called the Evolugator for the generation of a thermophilic descendant from a mesophilic ancestor (Escherichia coli MG1655). In addition, we used whole-genome sequencing of sequentially isolated strains throughout the thermal adaptation process to characterize the evolutionary history of the resultant genotype, identifying 31 genetic alterations that may contribute to thermotolerance, although some of these mutations may be adaptive for off-target environmental parameters, such as rich medium. We undertook preliminary phenotypic analysis of mutations identified in the glpF and fabA genes. Deletion of glpF in a mesophilic wild-type background conferred significantly improved growth rates in the 43-to-48°C temperature range and altered optimal growth temperature from 37°C to 43°C. In addition, transforming our evolved thermotolerant strain (EVG1064) with a wild-type allele of glpF reduced fitness at high temperatures. On the other hand, the mutation in fabA predictably increased the degree of saturation in membrane lipids, which is a known adaptation to elevated temperature. However, transforming EVG1064 with a wild-type fabA allele had only modest effects on fitness at intermediate temperatures. The Evolugator is fully automated and demonstrates the potential to accelerate the selection for complex traits by experimental evolution and significantly decrease development time for new industrial strains. PMID:22020511

  8. Some problems in proving the existence of the universal common ancestor of life on Earth.

    PubMed

    Yonezawa, Takahiro; Hasegawa, Masami

    2012-01-01

    Although overwhelming circumstantial evidence supports the existence of the universal common ancestor of all extant life on Earth, it is still an open question whether the universal common ancestor existed or not. Theobald (Nature 465, 219-222 (2010)) recently challenged this problem with a formal statistical test applied to aligned sequences of conservative proteins sampled from all domains of life and concluded that the universal common ancestor hypothesis holds. However, we point out that there is a fundamental flaw in Theobald's method which used aligned sequences. We show that the alignment gives a strong bias for the common ancestor hypothesis, and we provide an example that Theobald's method supports a common ancestor hypothesis for two apparently unrelated families of protein-encoding sequences (cytb and nd2 of mitochondria). This arouses suspicion about the effectiveness of the "formal" test.

  9. Reconstructing the Auditory Apparatus of Therapsids by Means of Neutron Tomography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Laaß, Michael; Schillinger, Burkhard

    The internal cranial structure of mammalian ancestors, i.e. the therapsids or "mammal-like reptiles", is crucial for understanding the early mammalian evolution. In the past therapsid skulls were investigated by mechanical sectioning or serial grinding, which was a very time-consuming and destructive process and could only be applied to non-valuable or poorly preserved specimens. As most therapsid skulls are embedded in terrestrial iron-rich sediments of Late Permian or Triassic age, i.e. so called "Red beds", a successful investigation with X-Rays is often not possible. We successfully investigated therapsid skulls by means of neutron tomography at the facility ANTARES at FRM II in Munich using cold neutron radiation. This kind of radiation is able to penetrate iron-rich substances in the range between 5 and 15 cm and produces a good contrast between matrix and bones, which enables segmentation of internal cranial structures such as bones, cavities and canals of nerves and blood vessels. In particular, neutron tomography combined with methods of 3D modeling was used here for the investigation and reconstruction of the auditory apparatus of therapsids.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

  11. Characterization of a Putative Ancestor of Coxsackievirus B5 ▿

    PubMed Central

    Gullberg, Maria; Tolf, Conny; Jonsson, Nina; Mulders, Mick N.; Savolainen-Kopra, Carita; Hovi, Tapani; Van Ranst, Marc; Lemey, Philippe; Hafenstein, Susan; Lindberg, A. Michael

    2010-01-01

    Like other RNA viruses, coxsackievirus B5 (CVB5) exists as circulating heterogeneous populations of genetic variants. In this study, we present the reconstruction and characterization of a probable ancestral virion of CVB5. Phylogenetic analyses based on capsid protein-encoding regions (the VP1 gene of 41 clinical isolates and the entire P1 region of eight clinical isolates) of CVB5 revealed two major cocirculating lineages. Ancestral capsid sequences were inferred from sequences of these contemporary CVB5 isolates by using maximum likelihood methods. By using Bayesian phylodynamic analysis, the inferred VP1 ancestral sequence dated back to 1854 (1807 to 1898). In order to study the properties of the putative ancestral capsid, the entire ancestral P1 sequence was synthesized de novo and inserted into the replicative backbone of an infectious CVB5 cDNA clone. Characterization of the recombinant virus in cell culture showed that fully functional infectious virus particles were assembled and that these viruses displayed properties similar to those of modern isolates in terms of receptor preferences, plaque phenotypes, growth characteristics, and cell tropism. This is the first report describing the resurrection and characterization of a picornavirus with a putative ancestral capsid. Our approach, including a phylogenetics-based reconstruction of viral predecessors, could serve as a starting point for experimental studies of viral evolution and might also provide an alternative strategy for the development of vaccines. PMID:20631132

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-01-01

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

  13. Evolution and divergence of the mammalian SAMD9/SAMD9L gene family

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The physiological functions of the human Sterile Alpha Motif Domain-containing 9 (SAMD9) gene and its chromosomally adjacent paralogue, SAMD9-like (SAMD9L), currently remain unknown. However, the direct links between the deleterious mutations or deletions in these two genes and several human disorders, such as inherited inflammatory calcified tumors and acute myeloid leukemia, suggest their biological importance. SAMD9 and SAMD9L have also recently been shown to play key roles in the innate immune responses to stimuli such as viral infection. We were particularly interested in understanding the mammalian evolutionary history of these two genes. The phylogeny of SAMD9 and SAMD9L genes was reconstructed using the Maximum Likelihood method. Furthermore, six different methods were applied to detect SAMD9 and SAMD9L codons under selective pressure: the site-specific model M8 implemented in the codeml program in PAML software and five methods available on the Datamonkey web server, including the Single Likelihood Ancestor Counting method, the Fixed Effect Likelihood method, the Random Effect Likelihood method, the Mixed Effects Model of Evolution method and the Fast Unbiased Bayesian AppRoximation method. Additionally, the house mouse (Mus musculus) genome has lost the SAMD9 gene, while keeping SAMD9L intact, prompting us to investigate whether this loss is a unique event during evolution. Results Our evolutionary analyses suggest that SAMD9 and SAMD9L arose through an ancestral gene duplication event after the divergence of Marsupialia from Placentalia. Additionally, selection analyses demonstrated that both genes have been subjected to positive evolutionary selection. The absence of either SAMD9 or SAMD9L genes from some mammalian species supports a partial functional redundancy between the two genes. Conclusions To the best of our knowledge, this work is the first study on the evolutionary history of mammalian SAMD9 and SAMD9L genes. We conclude that

  14. Phylogenetic analysis of a newfound bat-borne hantavirus supports a laurasiatherian host association for ancestral mammalian hantaviruses.

    PubMed

    Witkowski, Peter T; Drexler, Jan F; Kallies, René; Ličková, Martina; Bokorová, Silvia; Mananga, Gael D; Szemes, Tomáš; Leroy, Eric M; Krüger, Detlev H; Drosten, Christian; Klempa, Boris

    2016-07-01

    Until recently, hantaviruses (family Bunyaviridae) were believed to originate from rodent reservoirs. However, genetically distinct hantaviruses were lately found in shrews and moles, as well as in bats from Africa and Asia. Bats (order Chiroptera) are considered important reservoir hosts for emerging human pathogens. Here, we report on the identification of a novel hantavirus, provisionally named Makokou virus (MAKV), in Noack's Roundleaf Bat (Hipposideros ruber) in Gabon, Central Africa. Phylogenetic analysis of the genomic l-segment showed that MAKV was the most closely related to other bat-borne hantaviruses and shared a most recent common ancestor with the Asian hantaviruses Xuan Son and Laibin. Breakdown of the virus load in a bat animal showed that MAKV resembles rodent-borne hantaviruses in its organ distribution in that it predominantly occurred in the spleen and kidney; this provides a first insight into the infection pattern of bat-borne hantaviruses. Ancestral state reconstruction based on a tree of l gene sequences of all relevant hantavirus lineages was combined with phylogenetic fossil host hypothesis testing, leading to a statistically significant rejection of the mammalian superorder Euarchontoglires (including rodents) but not the superorder Laurasiatheria (including shrews, moles, and bats) as potential hosts of ancestral hantaviruses at most basal tree nodes. Our data supports the emerging concept of bats as previously overlooked hantavirus reservoir hosts.

  15. The proteomic complexity and rise of the primordial ancestor of diversified life

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background The last universal common ancestor represents the primordial cellular organism from which diversified life was derived. This urancestor accumulated genetic information before the rise of organismal lineages and is considered to be either a simple 'progenote' organism with a rudimentary translational apparatus or a more complex 'cenancestor' with almost all essential biological processes. Recent comparative genomic studies support the latter model and propose that the urancestor was similar to modern organisms in terms of gene content. However, most of these studies were based on molecular sequences, which are fast evolving and of limited value for deep evolutionary explorations. Results Here we engage in a phylogenomic study of protein domain structure in the proteomes of 420 free-living fully sequenced organisms. Domains were defined at the highly conserved fold superfamily (FSF) level of structural classification and an iterative phylogenomic approach was used to reconstruct max_set and min_set FSF repertoires as upper and lower bounds of the urancestral proteome. While the functional make up of the urancestral sets was complex, they represent only 5-11% of the 1,420 FSFs of extant proteomes and their make up and reuse was at least 5 and 3 times smaller than proteomes of free-living organisms, repectively. Trees of proteomes reconstructed directly from FSFs or from molecular functions, which included the max_set and min_set as articial taxa, showed that urancestors were always placed at their base and rooted the tree of life in Archaea. Finally, a molecular clock of FSFs suggests the min_set reflects urancestral genetic make up more reliably and confirms diversified life emerged about 2.9 billion years ago during the start of planet oxygenation. Conclusions The minimum urancestral FSF set reveals the urancestor had advanced metabolic capabilities, was especially rich in nucleotide metabolism enzymes, had pathways for the biosynthesis of membrane sn1

  16. Spectral shifts of mammalian ultraviolet-sensitive pigments (short wavelength-sensitive opsin 1) are associated with eye length and photic niche evolution.

    PubMed

    Emerling, Christopher A; Huynh, Hieu T; Nguyen, Minh A; Meredith, Robert W; Springer, Mark S

    2015-11-22

    Retinal opsin photopigments initiate mammalian vision when stimulated by light. Most mammals possess a short wavelength-sensitive opsin 1 (SWS1) pigment that is primarily sensitive to either ultraviolet or violet light, leading to variation in colour perception across species. Despite knowledge of both ultraviolet- and violet-sensitive SWS1 classes in mammals for 25 years, the adaptive significance of this variation has not been subjected to hypothesis testing, resulting in minimal understanding of the basis for mammalian SWS1 spectral tuning evolution. Here, we gathered data on SWS1 for 403 mammal species, including novel SWS1 sequences for 97 species. Ancestral sequence reconstructions suggest that the most recent common ancestor of Theria possessed an ultraviolet SWS1 pigment, and that violet-sensitive pigments evolved at least 12 times in mammalian history. We also observed that ultraviolet pigments, previously considered to be a rarity, are common in mammals. We then used phylogenetic comparative methods to test the hypotheses that the evolution of violet-sensitive SWS1 is associated with increased light exposure, extended longevity and longer eye length. We discovered that diurnal mammals and species with longer eyes are more likely to have violet-sensitive pigments and less likely to possess UV-sensitive pigments. We hypothesize that (i) as mammals evolved larger body sizes, they evolved longer eyes, which limited transmittance of ultraviolet light to the retina due to an increase in Rayleigh scattering, and (ii) as mammals began to invade diurnal temporal niches, they evolved lenses with low UV transmittance to reduce chromatic aberration and/or photo-oxidative damage.

  17. Spectral shifts of mammalian ultraviolet-sensitive pigments (short wavelength-sensitive opsin 1) are associated with eye length and photic niche evolution

    PubMed Central

    Emerling, Christopher A.; Huynh, Hieu T.; Nguyen, Minh A.; Meredith, Robert W.; Springer, Mark S.

    2015-01-01

    Retinal opsin photopigments initiate mammalian vision when stimulated by light. Most mammals possess a short wavelength-sensitive opsin 1 (SWS1) pigment that is primarily sensitive to either ultraviolet or violet light, leading to variation in colour perception across species. Despite knowledge of both ultraviolet- and violet-sensitive SWS1 classes in mammals for 25 years, the adaptive significance of this variation has not been subjected to hypothesis testing, resulting in minimal understanding of the basis for mammalian SWS1 spectral tuning evolution. Here, we gathered data on SWS1 for 403 mammal species, including novel SWS1 sequences for 97 species. Ancestral sequence reconstructions suggest that the most recent common ancestor of Theria possessed an ultraviolet SWS1 pigment, and that violet-sensitive pigments evolved at least 12 times in mammalian history. We also observed that ultraviolet pigments, previously considered to be a rarity, are common in mammals. We then used phylogenetic comparative methods to test the hypotheses that the evolution of violet-sensitive SWS1 is associated with increased light exposure, extended longevity and longer eye length. We discovered that diurnal mammals and species with longer eyes are more likely to have violet-sensitive pigments and less likely to possess UV-sensitive pigments. We hypothesize that (i) as mammals evolved larger body sizes, they evolved longer eyes, which limited transmittance of ultraviolet light to the retina due to an increase in Rayleigh scattering, and (ii) as mammals began to invade diurnal temporal niches, they evolved lenses with low UV transmittance to reduce chromatic aberration and/or photo-oxidative damage. PMID:26582021

  18. The Dispersed Archaeal Eukaryome and the Complex Archaeal Ancestor of Eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Koonin, Eugene V.; Yutin, Natalya

    2014-01-01

    The ancestral set of eukaryotic genes is a chimera composed of genes of archaeal and bacterial origins thanks to the endosymbiosis event that gave rise to the mitochondria and apparently antedated the last common ancestor of the extant eukaryotes. The proto-mitochondrial endosymbiont is confidently identified as an α-proteobacterium. In contrast, the archaeal ancestor of eukaryotes remains elusive, although evidence is accumulating that it could have belonged to a deep lineage within the TACK (Thaumarchaeota, Aigarchaeota, Crenarchaeota, Korarchaeota) superphylum of the Archaea. Recent surveys of archaeal genomes show that the apparent ancestors of several key functional systems of eukaryotes, the components of the archaeal “eukaryome,” such as ubiquitin signaling, RNA interference, and actin-based and tubulin-based cytoskeleton structures, are identifiable in different archaeal groups. We suggest that the archaeal ancestor of eukaryotes was a complex form, rooted deeply within the TACK superphylum, that already possessed some quintessential eukaryotic features, in particular, a cytoskeleton, and perhaps was capable of a primitive form of phagocytosis that would facilitate the engulfment of potential symbionts. This putative group of Archaea could have existed for a relatively short time before going extinct or undergoing genome streamlining, resulting in the dispersion of the eukaryome. This scenario might explain the difficulty with the identification of the archaeal ancestor of eukaryotes despite the straightforward detection of apparent ancestors to many signature eukaryotic functional systems. PMID:24691961

  19. The dispersed archaeal eukaryome and the complex archaeal ancestor of eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Koonin, Eugene V; Yutin, Natalya

    2014-04-01

    The ancestral set of eukaryotic genes is a chimera composed of genes of archaeal and bacterial origins thanks to the endosymbiosis event that gave rise to the mitochondria and apparently antedated the last common ancestor of the extant eukaryotes. The proto-mitochondrial endosymbiont is confidently identified as an α-proteobacterium. In contrast, the archaeal ancestor of eukaryotes remains elusive, although evidence is accumulating that it could have belonged to a deep lineage within the TACK (Thaumarchaeota, Aigarchaeota, Crenarchaeota, Korarchaeota) superphylum of the Archaea. Recent surveys of archaeal genomes show that the apparent ancestors of several key functional systems of eukaryotes, the components of the archaeal "eukaryome," such as ubiquitin signaling, RNA interference, and actin-based and tubulin-based cytoskeleton structures, are identifiable in different archaeal groups. We suggest that the archaeal ancestor of eukaryotes was a complex form, rooted deeply within the TACK superphylum, that already possessed some quintessential eukaryotic features, in particular, a cytoskeleton, and perhaps was capable of a primitive form of phagocytosis that would facilitate the engulfment of potential symbionts. This putative group of Archaea could have existed for a relatively short time before going extinct or undergoing genome streamlining, resulting in the dispersion of the eukaryome. This scenario might explain the difficulty with the identification of the archaeal ancestor of eukaryotes despite the straightforward detection of apparent ancestors to many signature eukaryotic functional systems.

  20. Redox proteins in mammalian cell death: an evolutionarily conserved function in mitochondria and prokaryotes.

    PubMed

    Punj, Vasu; Chakrabarty, A M

    2003-04-01

    Mammalian cell mitochondria are believed to have prokaryotic ancestry. Mitochondria are not only the powerhouse of energy generation within the eukaryotic cell but they also play a major role in inducing apoptotic cell death through release of redox proteins such as cytochrome c and the apoptosis-inducing factor (AIF), a flavoprotein with NADH oxidase activity. Recent evidence indicates that some present day prokaryotes release redox proteins that induce apoptosis in mammalian cells through stabilization of the tumour suppressor protein p53. p53 interacts with mitochondria either directly or through activation of the genes for pro-apoptotic proteins such as Bax or NOXA or genes that encode redox enzymes responsible for the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS). The analogy between the ancient ancestors of present day bacteria, the mitochondria, and the present day bacteria with regard to their ability to release redox proteins for triggering mammalian cell death is an interesting example of functional conservation during the hundreds of millions of years of evolution. It is possible that the ancestors of the present day prokaryotes released redox proteins to kill the ancestors of the eukaryotes. During evolution of the mitochondria from prokaryotes as obligate endosymbionts, the mitochondria maintained the same functions to programme their own host cell death.

  1. History of studies on mammalian middle ear evolution: a comparative morphological and developmental biology perspective.

    PubMed

    Takechi, Masaki; Kuratani, Shigeru

    2010-09-15

    The mammalian middle ear represents one of the most fundamental morphological features that define this class of vertebrates. Its skeletal pattern differs conspicuously from those of other amniotes and has attracted the attention of comparative zoologists for about 200 years. To reconcile this morphological inconsistency, early comparative morphologists suggested that the mammalian middle ear was derived from elements of the jaw joint of nonmammalian amniotes. Fossils of mammalian ancestors also implied a transition in skeletal morphology that resulted in the mammalian state. During the latter half of the 20th century, developmental mechanisms controlling the formation of the jaw skeleton became the subject of studies in developmental biology and molecular genetics. Mammalian middle ear evolution can now be interpreted as a series of changes in the developmental program of the pharyngeal arches. In this review, we summarize the history of middle ear research, highlight some of the remaining problems, and suggest possible future directions. We propose that to understand mammalian middle ear evolution, it is essential to identify the critical developmental events underlying the particular mammalian anatomy and to describe the evolutionary sequence of changes in developmental and molecular terms. We also discuss the degree of consistency between the developmental explanation of the mammalian middle ear based on molecular biology and morphological changes in the fossil record.

  2. Chasing ghosts: Allopolyploid origin of Oxyria sinensis (Polygonaceae) from its only diploid congener and an unknown ancestor.

    PubMed

    Luo, Xin; Hu, Quanjun; Zhou, Pingping; Zhang, Dan; Wang, Qian; Abbott, Richard J; Liu, Jianquan

    2017-03-12

    Reconstructing the origin of a polyploid species is particularly challenging when an ancestor has become extinct. Under such circumstances the extinct donor of a genome found in the polyploid may be treated as a 'ghost' species in that its prior existence is recognised through the presence of its genome in the polyploid. In this study, we aimed to determine the polyploid origin of Oxyria sinensis (2n=40) for which only one congeneric species is known, i.e. diploid O. digyna (2n=14). Genomic in situ hybridization (GISH), transcriptome, phylogenetic and demographic analyses, and ecological niche modeling were conducted for this purpose. GISH revealed that O. sinensis comprised 14 chromosomes from O. digyna and 26 chromosomes from an unknown ancestor. Transcriptome analysis indicated that following divergence from O. digyna, involving genome duplication around 12 million years ago (Ma), a second genome duplication occurred approximately 6 Ma to give rise to O. sinensis. Oxyria sinensis was shown to contain homologous gene sequences divergent from those present in O. digyna in addition to a set that clustered with those in O. digyna. Coalescent simulations indicated that O. sinensis expanded its distribution approximately 6-7 Ma, possibly following the second polyploidization event, whereas O. digyna expanded its range much later. It was also indicated that the distributions of both species contracted and re-expanded during the Pleistocene climatic oscillations. Ecological niche modeling similarly suggested that both species experienced changes in their distributional ranges in response to Quaternary climatic changes. The extinction of the unknown 'ghost' tetraploid species implicated in the origin of O. sinensis could have resulted from superior adaptation of O. sinensis to repeated climatic changes in the region where it now occurs. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  3. Mammalian genes induce partially reprogrammed pluripotent stem cells in non-mammalian vertebrate and invertebrate species

    PubMed Central

    Rosselló, Ricardo Antonio; Chen, Chun-Chun; Dai, Rui; Howard, Jason T; Hochgeschwender, Ute; Jarvis, Erich D

    2013-01-01

    Cells are fundamental units of life, but little is known about evolution of cell states. Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) are once differentiated cells that have been re-programmed to an embryonic stem cell-like state, providing a powerful platform for biology and medicine. However, they have been limited to a few mammalian species. Here we found that a set of four mammalian transcription factor genes used to generate iPSCs in mouse and humans can induce a partially reprogrammed pluripotent stem cell (PRPSCs) state in vertebrate and invertebrate model organisms, in mammals, birds, fish, and fly, which span 550 million years from a common ancestor. These findings are one of the first to show cross-lineage stem cell-like induction, and to generate pluripotent-like cells for several of these species with in vivo chimeras. We suggest that the stem-cell state may be highly conserved across a wide phylogenetic range. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.00036.001 PMID:24015354

  4. Phylogenomic evidence for the presence of a flagellum and cbb(3) oxidase in the free-living mitochondrial ancestor.

    PubMed

    Sassera, Davide; Lo, Nathan; Epis, Sara; D'Auria, Giuseppe; Montagna, Matteo; Comandatore, Francesco; Horner, David; Peretó, Juli; Luciano, Alberto Maria; Franciosi, Federica; Ferri, Emanuele; Crotti, Elena; Bazzocchi, Chiara; Daffonchio, Daniele; Sacchi, Luciano; Moya, Andres; Latorre, Amparo; Bandi, Claudio

    2011-12-01

    The initiation of the intracellular symbiosis that would give rise to mitochondria and eukaryotes was a major event in the history of life on earth. Hypotheses to explain eukaryogenesis fall into two broad and competing categories: those proposing that the host was a phagocytotic proto-eukaryote that preyed upon the free-living mitochondrial ancestor (hereafter FMA), and those proposing that the host was an archaebacterium that engaged in syntrophy with the FMA. Of key importance to these hypotheses are whether the FMA was motile or nonmotile, and the atmospheric conditions under which the FMA thrived. Reconstructions of the FMA based on genome content of Rickettsiales representatives-generally considered to be the closest living relatives of mitochondria-indicate that it was nonmotile and aerobic. We have sequenced the genome of Candidatus Midichloria mitochondrii, a novel and phylogenetically divergent member of the Rickettsiales. We found that it possesses unique gene sets found in no other Rickettsiales, including 26 genes associated with flagellar assembly, and a cbb(3)-type cytochrome oxidase. Phylogenomic analyses show that these genes were inherited in a vertical fashion from an ancestral α-proteobacterium, and indicate that the FMA possessed a flagellum, and could undergo oxidative phosphorylation under both aerobic and microoxic conditions. These results indicate that the FMA played a more active and potentially parasitic role in eukaryogenesis than currently appreciated and provide an explanation for how the symbiosis could have evolved under low levels of oxygen.

  5. Giant viruses coexisted with the cellular ancestors and represent a distinct supergroup along with superkingdoms Archaea, Bacteria and Eukarya

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background The discovery of giant viruses with genome and physical size comparable to cellular organisms, remnants of protein translation machinery and virus-specific parasites (virophages) have raised intriguing questions about their origin. Evidence advocates for their inclusion into global phylogenomic studies and their consideration as a distinct and ancient form of life. Results Here we reconstruct phylogenies describing the evolution of proteomes and protein domain structures of cellular organisms and double-stranded DNA viruses with medium-to-very-large proteomes (giant viruses). Trees of proteomes define viruses as a ‘fourth supergroup’ along with superkingdoms Archaea, Bacteria, and Eukarya. Trees of domains indicate they have evolved via massive and primordial reductive evolutionary processes. The distribution of domain structures suggests giant viruses harbor a significant number of protein domains including those with no cellular representation. The genomic and structural diversity embedded in the viral proteomes is comparable to the cellular proteomes of organisms with parasitic lifestyles. Since viral domains are widespread among cellular species, we propose that viruses mediate gene transfer between cells and crucially enhance biodiversity. Conclusions Results call for a change in the way viruses are perceived. They likely represent a distinct form of life that either predated or coexisted with the last universal common ancestor (LUCA) and constitute a very crucial part of our planet’s biosphere. PMID:22920653

  6. No known hominin species matches the expected dental morphology of the last common ancestor of Neanderthals and modern humans

    PubMed Central

    Gómez-Robles, Aida; Bermúdez de Castro, José María; Arsuaga, Juan-Luis; Carbonell, Eudald; Polly, P. David

    2013-01-01

    A central problem in paleoanthropology is the identity of the last common ancestor of Neanderthals and modern humans ([N-MH]LCA). Recently developed analytical techniques now allow this problem to be addressed using a probabilistic morphological framework. This study provides a quantitative reconstruction of the expected dental morphology of the [N-MH]LCA and an assessment of whether known fossil species are compatible with this ancestral position. We show that no known fossil species is a suitable candidate for being the [N-MH]LCA and that all late Early and Middle Pleistocene taxa from Europe have Neanderthal dental affinities, pointing to the existence of a European clade originated around 1 Ma. These results are incongruent with younger molecular divergence estimates and suggest at least one of the following must be true: (i) European fossils and the [N-MH]LCA selectively retained primitive dental traits; (ii) molecular estimates of the divergence between Neanderthals and modern humans are underestimated; or (iii) phenotypic divergence and speciation between both species were decoupled such that phenotypic differentiation, at least in dental morphology, predated speciation. PMID:24145426

  7. An entity evolving into a community: defining the common ancestor and evolutionary trajectory of chronic lymphocytic leukemia stereotyped subset #4.

    PubMed

    Sutton, Lesley-Ann; Papadopoulos, Giorgos; Hadzidimitriou, Anastasia; Papadopoulos, Stavros; Kostareli, Efterpi; Rosenquist, Richard; Tzovaras, Dimitrios; Stamatopoulos, Kostas

    2015-04-02

    Patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) assigned to stereotyped subset #4 express highly homologous B-cell receptor immunoglobulin (BcR IG) sequences with intense intraclonal diversification (ID) in the context of ongoing somatic hypermutation (SHM). Their remarkable biological and clinical similarities strongly support derivation from a common ancestor. We here revisited ID in subset #4 CLL to reconstruct their evolutionary history as a community of related clones. To this end, using specialized bioinformatics tools we assessed both IGHV-IGHD-IGHJ rearrangements (n = 511) and IGKV-IGKJ rearrangements (n = 397) derived from eight subset #4 cases. Due to high sequence relatedness, a number of subclonal clusters from different cases lay very close to one another, forming a core from which clusters exhibiting greater variation stemmed. Minor subclones from individual cases were mutated to such an extent that they now resembled the sequences of another patient. Viewing the entire subset #4 data set as a single entity branching through diversification enabled inference of a common sequence representing the putative ancestral BcR IG expressed by their still elusive common progenitor. These results have implications for improved understanding of the ontogeny of CLL subset #4, as well as the design of studies concerning the antigenic specificity of the clonotypic BcR IGs.

  8. A minimal estimate for the gene content of the last universal common ancestor--exobiology from a terrestrial perspective.

    PubMed

    Ouzounis, Christos A; Kunin, Victor; Darzentas, Nikos; Goldovsky, Leon

    2006-01-01

    Using an algorithm for ancestral state inference of gene content, given a large number of extant genome sequences and a phylogenetic tree, we aim to reconstruct the gene content of the last universal common ancestor (LUCA), a hypothetical life form that presumably was the progenitor of the three domains of life. The method allows for gene loss, previously found to be a major factor in shaping gene content, and thus the estimate of LUCA's gene content appears to be substantially higher than that proposed previously, with a typical number of over 1000 gene families, of which more than 90% are also functionally characterized. More precisely, when only prokaryotes are considered, the number varies between 1006 and 1189 gene families while when eukaryotes are also included, this number increases to between 1344 and 1529 families depending on the underlying phylogenetic tree. Therefore, the common belief that the hypothetical genome of LUCA should resemble those of the smallest extant genomes of obligate parasites is not supported by recent advances in computational genomics. Instead, a fairly complex genome similar to those of free-living prokaryotes, with a variety of functional capabilities including metabolic transformation, information processing, membrane/transport proteins and complex regulation, shared between the three domains of life, emerges as the most likely progenitor of life on Earth, with profound repercussions for planetary exploration and exobiology.

  9. Structural reconstruction of protein ancestry.

    PubMed

    Rouet, Romain; Langley, David B; Schofield, Peter; Christie, Mary; Roome, Brendan; Porebski, Benjamin T; Buckle, Ashley M; Clifton, Ben E; Jackson, Colin J; Stock, Daniela; Christ, Daniel

    2017-03-29

    Ancestral protein reconstruction allows the resurrection and characterization of ancient proteins based on computational analyses of sequences of modern-day proteins. Unfortunately, many protein families are highly divergent and not suitable for sequence-based reconstruction approaches. This limitation is exemplified by the antigen receptors of jawed vertebrates (B- and T-cell receptors), heterodimers formed by pairs of Ig domains. These receptors are believed to have evolved from an extinct homodimeric ancestor through a process of gene duplication and diversification; however molecular evidence has so far remained elusive. Here, we use a structural approach and laboratory evolution to reconstruct such molecules and characterize their interaction with antigen. High-resolution crystal structures of reconstructed homodimeric receptors in complex with hen-egg white lysozyme demonstrate how nanomolar affinity binding of asymmetrical antigen is enabled through selective recruitment and structural plasticity within the receptor-binding site. Our results provide structural evidence in support of long-held theories concerning the evolution of antigen receptors, and provide a blueprint for the experimental reconstruction of protein ancestry in the absence of phylogenetic evidence.

  10. The genome sequences of Arachis duranensis and Arachis ipaensis, the diploid ancestors of cultivated peanut

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cultivated peanut (Arachis hypogaea) is an allotetraploid with closely related subgenomes of total size ~2.7 Gb. This makes assembly of chromosomal pseudomolecules very challenging. Here we report genome sequences of cultivated peanut’s diploid ancestors (A. duranensis and A. ipaënsis). We show they...

  11. Effect of reference population size and available ancestor genotypes on imputation of Mexican Holstein genotypes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The effects of reference population size and the availability of information from genotyped ancestors on the accuracy of imputation of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) were investigated for Mexican Holstein cattle. Three scenarios for reference population size were examined: (1) a local popula...

  12. Genome sequence and annotation of Trichoderma parareesei, the ancestor of the cellulase producer Trichoderma reesei

    DOE PAGES

    Yang, Dongqing; Pomraning, Kyle; Kopchinskiy, Alexey; ...

    2015-08-13

    The filamentous fungus Trichoderma parareesei is the asexually reproducing ancestor of Trichoderma reesei, the holomorphic industrial producer of cellulase and hemicellulase. Here, we present the genome sequence of the T. parareesei type strain CBS 125925, which contains genes for 9,318 proteins.

  13. Evolution of the most recent common ancestor of a population with no selection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simon, Damien; Derrida, Bernard

    2006-05-01

    We consider the evolution of a population of fixed size with no selection. The number of generations G to reach the first common ancestor evolves in time. This evolution can be described by a simple Markov process, which allows one to calculate several characteristics of the time dependence of G. We also study how G is correlated to the genetic diversity.

  14. Analyzing the Rate at Which Languages Lose the Influence of a Common Ancestor

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rafferty, Anna N.; Griffiths, Thomas L.; Klein, Dan

    2014-01-01

    Analyzing the rate at which languages change can clarify whether similarities across languages are solely the result of cognitive biases or might be partially due to descent from a common ancestor. To demonstrate this approach, we use a simple model of language evolution to mathematically determine how long it should take for the distribution over…

  15. The compact Brachypodium genome conserves centromeric regions of a common ancestor with wheat and rice

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The evolution of five chromosomes of Brachypodium distachyon from a 12-chromosome ancestor of all grasses by dysploidy raises an interesting question about the fate of redundant centromeres. Three independent but complementary approaches were pursued to study centromeric region homologies among the ...

  16. Integration of Morphological Data into Molecular Phylogenetic Analysis: Toward the Identikit of the Stylasterid Ancestor

    PubMed Central

    Puce, Stefania; Pica, Daniela; Schiaparelli, Stefano; Negrisolo, Enrico

    2016-01-01

    Stylasteridae is a hydroid family including 29 worldwide-distributed genera, all provided with a calcareous skeleton. They are abundant in shallow and deep waters and represent an important component of marine communities. In the present paper, we studied the evolution of ten morphological characters, currently used in stylasterid taxonomy, using a phylogenetic approach. Our results indicate that stylasterid morphology is highly plastic and that many events of independent evolution and reversion have occurred. Our analysis also allows sketching a possible identikit of the stylasterid ancestor. It had calcareous skeleton, reticulate-granular coenosteal texture, polyps randomly arranged, gastrostyle, and dactylopore spines, while lacking a gastropore lip and dactylostyles. If the ancestor had single or double/multiple chambered gastropore tube is uncertain. These data suggest that the ancestor was similar to the extant genera Cyclohelia and Stellapora. Our investigation is the first attempt to integrate molecular and morphological information to clarify the stylasterid evolutionary scenario and represents the first step to infer the stylasterid ancestor morphology. PMID:27537333

  17. Mammalian Evolution May not Be Strictly Bifurcating

    PubMed Central

    Hallström, Björn M.; Janke, Axel

    2010-01-01

    The massive amount of genomic sequence data that is now available for analyzing evolutionary relationships among 31 placental mammals reduces the stochastic error in phylogenetic analyses to virtually zero. One would expect that this would make it possible to finally resolve controversial branches in the placental mammalian tree. We analyzed a 2,863,797 nucleotide-long alignment (3,364 genes) from 31 placental mammals for reconstructing their evolution. Most placental mammalian relationships were resolved, and a consensus of their evolution is emerging. However, certain branches remain difficult or virtually impossible to resolve. These branches are characterized by short divergence times in the order of 1–4 million years. Computer simulations based on parameters from the real data show that as little as about 12,500 amino acid sites could be sufficient to confidently resolve short branches as old as about 90 million years ago (Ma). Thus, the amount of sequence data should no longer be a limiting factor in resolving the relationships among placental mammals. The timing of the early radiation of placental mammals coincides with a period of climate warming some 100–80 Ma and with continental fragmentation. These global processes may have triggered the rapid diversification of placental mammals. However, the rapid radiations of certain mammalian groups complicate phylogenetic analyses, possibly due to incomplete lineage sorting and introgression. These speciation-related processes led to a mosaic genome and conflicting phylogenetic signals. Split network methods are ideal for visualizing these problematic branches and can therefore depict data conflict and possibly the true evolutionary history better than strictly bifurcating trees. Given the timing of tectonics, of placental mammalian divergences, and the fossil record, a Laurasian rather than Gondwanan origin of placental mammals seems the most parsimonious explanation. PMID:20591845

  18. Mammalian glycosylation in immunity.

    PubMed

    Marth, Jamey D; Grewal, Prabhjit K

    2008-11-01

    Glycosylation produces a diverse and abundant repertoire of glycans, which are collectively known as the glycome. Glycans are one of the four fundamental macromolecular components of all cells, and are highly regulated in the immune system. Their diversity reflects their multiple biological functions that encompass ligands for proteinaceous receptors known as lectins. Since the discovery that selectins and their glycan ligands are important for the regulation of leukocyte trafficking, it has been shown that additional features of the vertebrate immune system are also controlled by endogenous cellular glycosylation. This Review focuses on the emerging immunological roles of the mammalian glycome.

  19. The evolutionary history of the hominin hand since the last common ancestor of Pan and Homo

    PubMed Central

    Tocheri, Matthew W; Orr, Caley M; Jacofsky, Marc C; Marzke, Mary W

    2008-01-01

    Molecular evidence indicates that the last common ancestor of the genus Pan and the hominin clade existed between 8 and 4 million years ago (Ma). The current fossil record indicates the Pan-Homo last common ancestor existed at least 5 Ma and most likely between 6 and 7 Ma. Together, the molecular and fossil evidence has important consequences for interpreting the evolutionary history of the hand within the tribe Hominini (hominins). Firstly, parsimony supports the hypothesis that the hand of the last common ancestor most likely resembled that of an extant great ape overall (Pan, Gorilla, and Pongo), and that of an African ape in particular. Second, it provides a context for interpreting the derived changes to the hand that have evolved in various hominins. For example, the Australopithecus afarensis hand is likely derived in comparison with that of the Pan–Homo last common ancestor in having shorter fingers relative to thumb length and more proximo-distally oriented joints between its capitate, second metacarpal, and trapezium. This evidence suggests that these derived features evolved prior to the intensification of stone tool-related hominin behaviors beginning around 2.5 Ma. However, a majority of primitive features most likely present in the Pan-Homo last common ancestor are retained in the hands of Australopithecus, Paranthropus/early Homo, and Homo floresiensis. This evidence suggests that further derived changes to the hands of other hominins such as modern humans and Neandertals did not evolve until after 2.5 Ma and possibly even later than 1.5 Ma, which is currently the earliest evidence of Acheulian technology. The derived hands of modern humans and Neandertals may indicate a morphological commitment to tool-related manipulative behaviors beyond that observed in other hominins, including those (e.g. H. floresiensis) which may be descended from earlier tool-making species. PMID:18380869

  20. Mammalian sperm morphometry.

    PubMed Central

    Gage, M J

    1998-01-01

    Understanding the adaptive significance of sperm form and function has been a challenge to biologists because sperm are highly specialized cells operating at a microscopic level in a complex environment. A fruitful course of investigation has been to use the comparative approach. This comparative study attempts to address some fundamental questions of the evolution of mammalian sperm morphometry. Data on sperm morphometry for 445 mammalian species were collated from published sources. I use contemporary phylogenetic analysis to control for the inherent non-independence of species and explore relationships between the morphometric dimensions of the three essential spermatozoal components: head, mid-piece and flagellum. Energy for flagellar action is metabolized by the mitochondrial-dense mid-piece and these combine to propel the sperm head, carrying the male haplotype, to the ovum. I therefore search for evolutionary associations between sperm morphometry and body mass, karyotype and the duration of oestrus. In contrast to previous findings, there is no inverse correlation between body weight and sperm length. Sperm mid-piece and flagellum lengths are positively associated with both head length and area, and the slopes of these relationships are discussed. Flagellum length is positively associated with mid-piece length but, in contrast to previous research and after phylogenetic control, I find no relationship between flagellum length and the volume of the mitochondrial sheath. Sperm head dimensions are not related to either genome mass or chromosome number, and there are no relationships between sperm morphometry and the duration of oestrus. PMID:9474794

  1. Common circuit design in fly and mammalian motion vision.

    PubMed

    Borst, Alexander; Helmstaedter, Moritz

    2015-08-01

    Motion-sensitive neurons have long been studied in both the mammalian retina and the insect optic lobe, yet striking similarities have become obvious only recently. Detailed studies at the circuit level revealed that, in both systems, (i) motion information is extracted from primary visual information in parallel ON and OFF pathways; (ii) in each pathway, the process of elementary motion detection involves the correlation of signals with different temporal dynamics; and (iii) primary motion information from both pathways converges at the next synapse, resulting in four groups of ON-OFF neurons, selective for the four cardinal directions. Given that the last common ancestor of insects and mammals lived about 550 million years ago, this general strategy seems to be a robust solution for how to compute the direction of visual motion with neural hardware.

  2. Karyotype and Gene Order Evolution from Reconstructed Extinct Ancestors Highlight Contrasts in Genome Plasticity of Modern Rosid Crops

    PubMed Central

    Murat, Florent; Zhang, Rongzhi; Guizard, Sébastien; Gavranović, Haris; Flores, Raphael; Steinbach, Delphine; Quesneville, Hadi; Tannier, Eric; Salse, Jérôme

    2015-01-01

    We used nine complete genome sequences, from grape, poplar, Arabidopsis, soybean, lotus, apple, strawberry, cacao, and papaya, to investigate the paleohistory of rosid crops. We characterized an ancestral rosid karyotype, structured into 7/21 protochomosomes, with a minimal set of 6,250 ordered protogenes and a minimum physical coding gene space of 50 megabases. We also proposed ancestral karyotypes for the Caricaceae, Brassicaceae, Malvaceae, Fabaceae, Rosaceae, Salicaceae, and Vitaceae families with 9, 8, 10, 6, 12, 9, 12, and 19 protochromosomes, respectively. On the basis of these ancestral karyotypes and present-day species comparisons, we proposed a two-step evolutionary scenario based on allohexaploidization involving the newly characterized A, B, and C diploid progenitors leading to dominant (stable) and sensitive (plastic) genomic compartments in any modern rosid crops. Finally, a new user-friendly online tool, “DicotSyntenyViewer” (available from http://urgi.versailles.inra.fr/synteny-dicot), has been made available for accurate translational genomics in rosids. PMID:25637221

  3. The mammalian blastocyst.

    PubMed

    Frankenberg, Stephen R; de Barros, Flavia R O; Rossant, Janet; Renfree, Marilyn B

    2016-01-01

    The blastocyst is a mammalian invention that carries the embryo from cleavage to gastrulation. For such a simple structure, it exhibits remarkable diversity in its mode of formation, morphology, longevity, and intimacy with the uterine endometrium. This review explores this diversity in the light of the evolution of viviparity, comparing the three main groups of mammals: monotremes, marsupials, and eutherians. The principal drivers in blastocyst evolution were loss of yolk coupled with evolution of the placenta. An important outcome of blastocyst development is differentiation of two extraembryonic lineages (trophoblast and hypoblast) that contribute to the placenta. While in many species trophoblast segregation is often coupled with blastocyst formation, in marsupials and at least some Afrotherians, these events do not coincide. Thus, many questions regarding the conservation of molecular mechanisms controlling these events are of great interest but currently unresolved. For further resources related to this article, please visit the WIREs website.

  4. Sequencing Y Chromosomes Resolves Discrepancy in Time to Common Ancestor of Males versus Females

    PubMed Central

    Poznik, G. David; Henn, Brenna M.; Yee, Muh-Ching; Sliwerska, Elzbieta; Euskirchen, Ghia M.; Lin, Alice A.; Snyder, Michael; Quintana-Murci, Lluis; Kidd, Jeffrey M.; Underhill, Peter A.; Bustamante, Carlos D.

    2014-01-01

    The Y chromosome and the mitochondrial genome (mtDNA) have been used to estimate when the common patrilineal and matrilineal ancestors of humans lived. We sequenced the genomes of 69 males from nine populations, including two in which we find basal branches of the Y chromosome tree. We identify ancient phylogenetic structure within African haplogroups and resolve a long-standing ambiguity deep within the tree. Applying equivalent methodologies to the Y and mtDNA, we estimate the time to the most recent common ancestor (TMRCA) of the Y chromosome to be 120–156 thousand years and the mtDNA TMRCA to be 99–148 ky. Our findings suggest that, contrary to prior claims, male lineages do not coalesce significantly more recently than female lineages. PMID:23908239

  5. The one ancestor per generation rule and three other rules of mitochondrial inheritance.

    PubMed

    Ohno, S

    1997-07-22

    In mammals, at least, a species-specific mechanism exists that eliminates sperm-derived mitochondrial DNA from a fertilized egg. The result is the "one female ancestor per generation" rule and three other rules of mitochondrial inheritance. The second, third, and fourth rules are as follows. (ii) Sublineages of a given mitochondrial line can be generated only during the parallel descents from ancestral sisters. (iii) In a static population in which the production of one female progeny per mated pair per generation has been a rule, several ancient mitochondrial lineages harking back to the female founders of the speciation may persist side by side. (iv) Two or more individuals not related to each other in the recent past may share the identical or nearly identical mitochondrial genome derived from the common female ancestor or ancestral sisters of many generations ago.

  6. Effect of reference population size and available ancestor genotypes on imputation of Mexican Holstein genotypes.

    PubMed

    García-Ruiz, A; Ruiz-Lopez, F J; Wiggans, G R; Van Tassell, C P; Montaldo, H H

    2015-05-01

    The effects of reference population size and the availability of information from genotyped ancestors on the accuracy of imputation of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) were investigated for Mexican Holstein cattle. Three scenarios for reference population size were examined: (1) a local population of 2,011 genotyped Mexican Holsteins, (2) animals in scenario 1 plus 866 Holsteins in the US genotype database (GDB) with genotyped Mexican daughters, and (3) animals in scenario 1 and all US GDB Holsteins (338,073). Genotypes from 4 chip densities (2 low density, 1 mid density, and 1 high density) were imputed using findhap (version 3) to the 45,195 markers on the mid-density chip. Imputation success was determined by comparing the numbers of SNP with 1 or 2 alleles missing and the numbers of differently predicted SNP (conflicts) among the 3 scenarios. Imputation accuracy improved as chip density and numbers of genotyped ancestors increased, and the percentage of SNP with 1 missing allele was greater than that for 2 missing alleles for all scenarios. The largest numbers of conflicts were found between scenarios 1 and 3. The inclusion of information from direct ancestors (dam or sire) with US GDB genotypes in the imputation of Mexican Holstein genotypes increased imputation accuracy by 1 percentage point for low-density genotypes and by 0.5 percentage points for high-density genotypes, which was about half the gain found with information from all US GDB Holsteins. A larger reference population and the availability of genotyped ancestors improved imputation; animals with genotyped parents in a large reference population had higher imputation accuracy than those with no or few genotyped relatives in a small reference population. For small local populations, including genotypes from other related populations can aid in improving imputation accuracy.

  7. The common ancestor of archaea and eukarya was not an archaeon.

    PubMed

    Forterre, Patrick

    2013-01-01

    It is often assumed that eukarya originated from archaea. This view has been recently supported by phylogenetic analyses in which eukarya are nested within archaea. Here, I argue that these analyses are not reliable, and I critically discuss archaeal ancestor scenarios, as well as fusion scenarios for the origin of eukaryotes. Based on recognized evolutionary trends toward reduction in archaea and toward complexity in eukarya, I suggest that their last common ancestor was more complex than modern archaea but simpler than modern eukaryotes (the bug in-between scenario). I propose that the ancestors of archaea (and bacteria) escaped protoeukaryotic predators by invading high temperature biotopes, triggering their reductive evolution toward the "prokaryotic" phenotype (the thermoreduction hypothesis). Intriguingly, whereas archaea and eukarya share many basic features at the molecular level, the archaeal mobilome resembles more the bacterial than the eukaryotic one. I suggest that selection of different parts of the ancestral virosphere at the onset of the three domains played a critical role in shaping their respective biology. Eukarya probably evolved toward complexity with the help of retroviruses and large DNA viruses, whereas similar selection pressure (thermoreduction) could explain why the archaeal and bacterial mobilomes somehow resemble each other.

  8. Transmission between Archaic and Modern Human Ancestors during the Evolution of the Oncogenic Human Papillomavirus 16.

    PubMed

    Pimenoff, Ville N; de Oliveira, Cristina Mendes; Bravo, Ignacio G

    2017-01-01

    Every human suffers through life a number of papillomaviruses (PVs) infections, most of them asymptomatic. A notable exception are persistent infections by Human papillomavirus 16 (HPV16), the most oncogenic infectious agent for humans and responsible for most infection-driven anogenital cancers. Oncogenic potential is not homogeneous among HPV16 lineages, and genetic variation within HPV16 exhibits some geographic structure. However, an in-depth analysis of the HPV16 evolutionary history was still wanting. We have analyzed extant HPV16 diversity and compared the evolutionary and phylogeographical patterns of humans and of HPV16. We show that codivergence with modern humans explains at most 30% of the present viral geographical distribution. The most explanatory scenario suggests that ancestral HPV16 already infected ancestral human populations and that viral lineages co-diverged with the hosts in parallel with the split between archaic Neanderthal-Denisovans and ancestral modern human populations, generating the ancestral HPV16A and HPV16BCD viral lineages, respectively. We propose that after out-of-Africa migration of modern human ancestors, sexual transmission between human populations introduced HPV16A into modern human ancestor populations. We hypothesize that differential coevolution of HPV16 lineages with different but closely related ancestral human populations and subsequent host-switch events in parallel with introgression of archaic alleles into the genomes of modern human ancestors may be largely responsible for the present-day differential prevalence and association with cancers for HPV16 variants.

  9. The great divides: Ardipithecus ramidus reveals the postcrania of our last common ancestors with African apes.

    PubMed

    Lovejoy, C Owen; Suwa, Gen; Simpson, Scott W; Matternes, Jay H; White, Tim D

    2009-10-02

    Genomic comparisons have established the chimpanzee and bonobo as our closest living relatives. However, the intricacies of gene regulation and expression caution against the use of these extant apes in deducing the anatomical structure of the last common ancestor that we shared with them. Evidence for this structure must therefore be sought from the fossil record. Until now, that record has provided few relevant data because available fossils were too recent or too incomplete. Evidence from Ardipithecus ramidus now suggests that the last common ancestor lacked the hand, foot, pelvic, vertebral, and limb structures and proportions specialized for suspension, vertical climbing, and knuckle-walking among extant African apes. If this hypothesis is correct, each extant African ape genus must have independently acquired these specializations from more generalized ancestors who still practiced careful arboreal climbing and bridging. African apes and hominids acquired advanced orthogrady in parallel. Hominoid spinal invagination is an embryogenetic mechanism that reoriented the shoulder girdle more laterally. It was unaccompanied by substantial lumbar spine abbreviation, an adaptation restricted to vertical climbing and/or suspension. The specialized locomotor anatomies and behaviors of chimpanzees and gorillas therefore constitute poor models for the origin and evolution of human bipedality.

  10. The Common Ancestor of Archaea and Eukarya Was Not an Archaeon

    PubMed Central

    Forterre, Patrick

    2013-01-01

    It is often assumed that eukarya originated from archaea. This view has been recently supported by phylogenetic analyses in which eukarya are nested within archaea. Here, I argue that these analyses are not reliable, and I critically discuss archaeal ancestor scenarios, as well as fusion scenarios for the origin of eukaryotes. Based on recognized evolutionary trends toward reduction in archaea and toward complexity in eukarya, I suggest that their last common ancestor was more complex than modern archaea but simpler than modern eukaryotes (the bug in-between scenario). I propose that the ancestors of archaea (and bacteria) escaped protoeukaryotic predators by invading high temperature biotopes, triggering their reductive evolution toward the “prokaryotic” phenotype (the thermoreduction hypothesis). Intriguingly, whereas archaea and eukarya share many basic features at the molecular level, the archaeal mobilome resembles more the bacterial than the eukaryotic one. I suggest that selection of different parts of the ancestral virosphere at the onset of the three domains played a critical role in shaping their respective biology. Eukarya probably evolved toward complexity with the help of retroviruses and large DNA viruses, whereas similar selection pressure (thermoreduction) could explain why the archaeal and bacterial mobilomes somehow resemble each other. PMID:24348094

  11. Heterokont Predator Develorapax marinus gen. et sp. nov. – A Model of the Ochrophyte Ancestor

    PubMed Central

    Aleoshin, Vladimir V.; Mylnikov, Alexander P.; Mirzaeva, Gulnara S.; Mikhailov, Kirill V.; Karpov, Sergey A.

    2016-01-01

    Heterotrophic lineages of Heterokonta (or stramenopiles), in contrast to a single monophyletic group of autotrophs, Ochrophyta, form several clades that independently branch off the heterokont stem lineage. The nearest neighbors of Ochrophyta in the phylogenetic tree appear to be almost exclusively bacterivorous, whereas the hypothesis of plastid acquisition by the ancestors of the ochrophyte lineage suggests an ability to engulf eukaryotic alga. In line with this hypothesis, the heterotrophic predator at the base of the ochrophyte lineage may be regarded as a model for the ochrophyte ancestor. Here, we present a new genus and species of marine free-living heterotrophic heterokont Develorapax marinus, which falls into an isolated heterokont cluster, along with the marine flagellate Developayella elegans, and is able to engulf eukaryotic cells. Together with environmental sequences D. marinus and D. elegans form a class-level clade Developea nom. nov. represented by species adapted to different environmental conditions and with a wide geographical distribution. The position of Developea among Heterokonta in large-scale phylogenetic tree is discussed. We propose that members of the Developea clade represent a model for transition from bacterivory to a predatory feeding mode by selection for larger prey. Presumably, such transition in the grazing strategy is possible in the presence of bacterial biofilms or aggregates expected in eutrophic environment, and has likely occurred in the ochrophyte ancestor. PMID:27536283

  12. Evidence for the presence of a cellulase gene in the last common ancestor of bilaterian animals.

    PubMed Central

    Lo, Nathan; Watanabe, Hirofumi; Sugimura, Masahiro

    2003-01-01

    Until recently, the textbook view of cellulose hydrolysis in animals was that gut-resident symbiotic organisms such as bacteria or unicellular eukaryotes are responsible for the cellulases produced. This view has been challenged by the characterization and sequencing of endogenous cellulase genes from some invertebrate animals, including plant-parasitic nematodes, arthropods and a mollusc. Most of these genes are completely unrelated in terms of sequence, and their evolutionary origins remain unclear. In the case of plant-parasitic nematodes, it has been suggested that their ancestor obtained a cellulase gene via horizontal gene transfer from a prokaryote, and similar suggestions have been made about a cellulase gene recently discovered in a sea squirt. To improve understanding about the evolution of animal cellulases, we searched for all known types of these enzymes in GenBank, and performed phylogenetic comparisons. Low phylogenetic resolution was found among most of the sequences examined, however, positional identity in the introns of cellulase genes from a termite, a sea squirt and an abalone provided compelling evidence that a similar gene was present in the last common ancestor of protostomes and deuterostomes. In a different enzyme family, cellulases from beetles and plant-parasitic nematodes were found to cluster together. This result questions the idea of lateral gene transfer into the ancestors of the latter, although statistical tests did not allow this possibility to be ruled out. Overall, our results suggest that at least one family of endogenous cellulases may be more widespread in animals than previously thought. PMID:12952640

  13. Mitochondria, the Cell Cycle, and the Origin of Sex via a Syncytial Eukaryote Common Ancestor.

    PubMed

    Garg, Sriram G; Martin, William F

    2016-07-02

    Theories for the origin of sex traditionally start with an asexual mitosing cell and add recombination, thereby deriving meiosis from mitosis. Though sex was clearly present in the eukaryote common ancestor, the order of events linking the origin of sex and the origin of mitosis is unknown. Here, we present an evolutionary inference for the origin of sex starting with a bacterial ancestor of mitochondria in the cytosol of its archaeal host. We posit that symbiotic association led to the origin of mitochondria and gene transfer to host's genome, generating a nucleus and a dedicated translational compartment, the eukaryotic cytosol, in which-by virtue of mitochondria-metabolic energy was not limiting. Spontaneous protein aggregation (monomer polymerization) and Adenosine Tri-phosphate (ATP)-dependent macromolecular movement in the cytosol thereby became selectable, giving rise to continuous microtubule-dependent chromosome separation (reduction division). We propose that eukaryotic chromosome division arose in a filamentous, syncytial, multinucleated ancestor, in which nuclei with insufficient chromosome numbers could complement each other through mRNA in the cytosol and generate new chromosome combinations through karyogamy. A syncytial (or coenocytic, a synonym) eukaryote ancestor, or Coeca, would account for the observation that the process of eukaryotic chromosome separation is more conserved than the process of eukaryotic cell division. The first progeny of such a syncytial ancestor were likely equivalent to meiospores, released into the environment by the host's vesicle secretion machinery. The natural ability of archaea (the host) to fuse and recombine brought forth reciprocal recombination among fusing (syngamy and karyogamy) progeny-sex-in an ancestrally meiotic cell cycle, from which the simpler haploid and diploid mitotic cell cycles arose. The origin of eukaryotes was the origin of vertical lineage inheritance, and sex was required to keep vertically

  14. Penile Reconstruction

    PubMed Central

    Salgado, Christopher J.; Chim, Harvey; Tang, Jennifer C.; Monstrey, Stan J.; Mardini, Samir

    2011-01-01

    A variety of surgical options exists for penile reconstruction. The key to success of therapy is holistic management of the patient, with attention to the psychological aspects of treatment. In this article, we review reconstructive modalities for various types of penile defects inclusive of partial and total defects as well as the buried penis, and also describe recent basic science advances, which may promise new options for penile reconstruction. PMID:22851914

  15. Mammalian clock output mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Kalsbeek, Andries; Yi, Chun-Xia; Cailotto, Cathy; la Fleur, Susanne E; Fliers, Eric; Buijs, Ruud M

    2011-06-30

    In mammals many behaviours (e.g. sleep-wake, feeding) as well as physiological (e.g. body temperature, blood pressure) and endocrine (e.g. plasma corticosterone concentration) events display a 24 h rhythmicity. These 24 h rhythms are induced by a timing system that is composed of central and peripheral clocks. The highly co-ordinated output of the hypothalamic biological clock not only controls the daily rhythm in sleep-wake (or feeding-fasting) behaviour, but also exerts a direct control over many aspects of hormone release and energy metabolism. First, we present the anatomical connections used by the mammalian biological clock to enforce its endogenous rhythmicity on the rest of the body, especially the neuro-endocrine and energy homoeostatic systems. Subsequently, we review a number of physiological experiments investigating the functional significance of this neuro-anatomical substrate. Together, this overview of experimental data reveals a highly specialized organization of connections between the hypothalamic pacemaker and neuro-endocrine system as well as the pre-sympathetic and pre-parasympathetic branches of the autonomic nervous system.

  16. The Mammalian Septin Interactome

    PubMed Central

    Neubauer, Katharina; Zieger, Barbara

    2017-01-01

    Septins are GTP-binding and membrane-interacting proteins with a highly conserved domain structure involved in various cellular processes, including cytoskeleton organization, cytokinesis, and membrane dynamics. To date, 13 different septin genes have been identified in mammals (SEPT1 to SEPT12 and SEPT14), which can be classified into four distinct subgroups based on the sequence homology of their domain structure (SEPT2, SEPT3, SEPT6, and SEPT7 subgroup). The family members of these subgroups have a strong affinity for other septins and form apolar tri-, hexa-, or octameric complexes consisting of multiple septin polypeptides. The first characterized core complex is the hetero-trimer SEPT2-6-7. Within these complexes single septins can be exchanged in a subgroup-specific manner. Hexamers contain SEPT2 and SEPT6 subgroup members and SEPT7 in two copies each whereas the octamers additionally comprise two SEPT9 subgroup septins. The various isoforms seem to determine the function and regulation of the septin complex. Septins self-assemble into higher-order structures, including filaments and rings in orders, which are typical for different cell types. Misregulation of septins leads to human diseases such as neurodegenerative and bleeding disorders. In non-dividing cells such as neuronal tissue and platelets septins have been associated with exocytosis. However, many mechanistic details and roles attributed to septins are poorly understood. We describe here some important mammalian septin interactions with a special focus on the clinically relevant septin interactions. PMID:28224124

  17. A Rosetta stone of mammalian genetics.

    PubMed

    Nadeau, J H; Grant, P L; Mankala, S; Reiner, A H; Richardson, J E; Eppig, J T

    1995-01-26

    The Mammalian Comparative Database provides genetic maps of mammalian species. Comparative maps are valuable aids for predicting linkages, developing animal models and studying genome organization and evolution.

  18. Stem Cells in Mammalian Gonads.

    PubMed

    Wu, Ji; Ding, Xinbao; Wang, Jian

    Stem cells have great value in clinical application because of their ability to self-renew and their potential to differentiate into many different cell types. Mammalian gonads, including testes for males and ovaries for females, are composed of germline and somatic cells. In male mammals, spermatogonial stem cells maintain spermatogenesis which occurs continuously in adult testis. Likewise, a growing body of evidence demonstrated that female germline stem cells could be found in mammalian ovaries. Meanwhile, prior studies have shown that somatic stem cells exist in both testes and ovaries. In this chapter, we focus on mammalian gonad stem cells and discuss their characteristics as well as differentiation potentials.

  19. Evolutionary history and metabolic insights of ancient mammalian uricases

    PubMed Central

    Kratzer, James T.; Lanaspa, Miguel A.; Murphy, Michael N.; Cicerchi, Christina; Graves, Christina L.; Tipton, Peter A.; Ortlund, Eric A.; Johnson, Richard J.; Gaucher, Eric A.

    2014-01-01

    Uricase is an enzyme involved in purine catabolism and is found in all three domains of life. Curiously, uricase is not functional in some organisms despite its role in converting highly insoluble uric acid into 5-hydroxyisourate. Of particular interest is the observation that apes, including humans, cannot oxidize uric acid, and it appears that multiple, independent evolutionary events led to the silencing or pseudogenization of the uricase gene in ancestral apes. Various arguments have been made to suggest why natural selection would allow the accumulation of uric acid despite the physiological consequences of crystallized monosodium urate acutely causing liver/kidney damage or chronically causing gout. We have applied evolutionary models to understand the history of primate uricases by resurrecting ancestral mammalian intermediates before the pseudogenization events of this gene family. Resurrected proteins reveal that ancestral uricases have steadily decreased in activity since the last common ancestor of mammals gave rise to descendent primate lineages. We were also able to determine the 3D distribution of amino acid replacements as they accumulated during evolutionary history by crystallizing a mammalian uricase protein. Further, ancient and modern uricases were stably transfected into HepG2 liver cells to test one hypothesis that uricase pseudogenization allowed ancient frugivorous apes to rapidly convert fructose into fat. Finally, pharmacokinetics of an ancient uricase injected in rodents suggest that our integrated approach provides the foundation for an evolutionarily-engineered enzyme capable of treating gout and preventing tumor lysis syndrome in human patients. PMID:24550457

  20. Penile reconstruction

    PubMed Central

    Garaffa, Giulio; Sansalone, Salvatore; Ralph, David J

    2013-01-01

    During the most recent years, a variety of new techniques of penile reconstruction have been described in the literature. This paper focuses on the most recent advances in male genital reconstruction after trauma, excision of benign and malignant disease, in gender reassignment surgery and aphallia with emphasis on surgical technique, cosmetic and functional outcome. PMID:22426595

  1. A Comparative Study of Airflow and Odorant Deposition in the Mammalian Nasal Cavity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richter, Joseph; Rumple, Christopher; Ranslow, Allison; Quigley, Andrew; Pang, Benison; Neuberger, Thomas; Krane, Michael; van Valkenburgh, Blaire; Craven, Brent

    2013-11-01

    The complex structure of the mammalian nasal cavity provides a tortuous airflow path and a large surface area for respiratory air conditioning, filtering of inspired contaminants, and olfaction. Due to the small and contorted structure of the nasal turbinals, nasal anatomy and function remains poorly understood in most mammals. Here, we utilize high-resolution MRI scans to reconstruct anatomically-accurate models of the mammalian nasal cavity. These data are used to compare the form and function of the mammalian nose. High-fidelity computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations of nasal airflow and odorant deposition are presented and used to compare olfactory function across species (primate, rodent, canine, feline, ungulate).

  2. Maturation of the mammalian secretome

    PubMed Central

    Simpson, Jeremy C; Mateos, Alvaro; Pepperkok, Rainer

    2007-01-01

    A recent use of quantitative proteomics to determine the constituents of the endoplasmic reticulum and Golgi complex is discussed in the light of other available methodologies for cataloging the proteins associated with the mammalian secretory pathway. PMID:17472737

  3. Mammalian DNA Repair. Final Report

    SciTech Connect

    2003-01-24

    The Gordon Research Conference (GRC) on Mammalian DNA Repair was held at Harbortown Resort, Ventura Beach, CA. Emphasis was placed on current unpublished research and discussion of the future target areas in this field.

  4. Intolerable human suffering and the role of the ancestor: literary criticism as a means of analysis.

    PubMed

    Harrison, E

    2000-09-01

    Intolerable human suffering and the role of the ancestor: literary criticism as a means of analysis This essay explores the experience of intolerable human suffering in Toni Cade Bambara's novel, The Salt Eaters. The method of analysis is literary criticism, a technique that shares many of the same goals as other types of inquiry. It employs close reading to illuminate the novel's meaning(s), thereby revealing information about the nature of intolerable human suffering. Morrison's characteristics of black art is the literary and cultural framework that guides the analysis of Bambara's novel. The paradigm has broad application for nursing. The purpose of this analysis was to describe the role of the ancestral system as a predictor of the trajectory of suffering. The results extend Morrison's paradigm and her notion of ancestor to include traditions and other non-corporeal factors that are essential for well-being and survival. The protagonist in Bambara's novel, Velma Henry, is the patient and exemplar who does not succumb to intolerable suffering because of its cumulative weight, but because she has lost touch with the traditions of her people, an essential component of her ancestral system. The ancestral system is a rich and complex network of individuals, groups, customs and beliefs that are instructive, protective and benevolent. Ancestors are also timeless and provide wisdom, but when the ancestral system is weak or absent, the trajectory of suffering is not favourable. Nurses must learn to recognize intolerable human suffering, to identify the patient's ancestral system, and to work within that system to keep suffering patients from harm.

  5. Ancestor-descendant relationships in evolution: origin of the extant pygmy right whale, Caperea marginata.

    PubMed

    Tsai, Cheng-Hsiu; Fordyce, R Ewan

    2015-01-01

    Ancestor-descendant relationships (ADRs), involving descent with modification, are the fundamental concept in evolution, but are usually difficult to recognize. We examined the cladistic relationship between the only reported fossil pygmy right whale, †Miocaperea pulchra, and its sole living relative, the enigmatic pygmy right whale Caperea marginata, the latter represented by both adult and juvenile specimens. †Miocaperea is phylogenetically bracketed between juvenile and adult Caperea marginata in morphologically based analyses, thus suggesting a possible ADR-the first so far identified within baleen whales (Cetacea: Mysticeti). The †Miocaperea-Caperea lineage may show long-term morphological stasis and, in turn, punctuated equilibrium.

  6. Life cycle evolution: was the eumetazoan ancestor a holopelagic, planktotrophic gastraea?

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Two theories for the origin of animal life cycles with planktotrophic larvae are now discussed seriously: The terminal addition theory proposes a holopelagic, planktotrophic gastraea as the ancestor of the eumetazoans with addition of benthic adult stages and retention of the planktotrophic stages as larvae, i.e. the ancestral life cycles were indirect. The intercalation theory now proposes a benthic, deposit-feeding gastraea as the bilaterian ancestor with a direct development, and with planktotrophic larvae evolving independently in numerous lineages through specializations of juveniles. Results Information from the fossil record, from mapping of developmental types onto known phylogenies, from occurrence of apical organs, and from genetics gives no direct information about the ancestral eumetazoan life cycle; however, there are plenty of examples of evolution from an indirect development to direct development, and no unequivocal example of evolution in the opposite direction. Analyses of scenarios for the two types of evolution are highly informative. The evolution of the indirect spiralian life cycle with a trochophora larva from a planktotrophic gastraea is explained by the trochophora theory as a continuous series of ancestors, where each evolutionary step had an adaptational advantage. The loss of ciliated larvae in the ecdysozoans is associated with the loss of outer ciliated epithelia. A scenario for the intercalation theory shows the origin of the planktotrophic larvae of the spiralians through a series of specializations of the general ciliation of the juvenile. The early steps associated with the enhancement of swimming seem probable, but the following steps which should lead to the complicated downstream-collecting ciliary system are without any advantage, or even seem disadvantageous, until the whole structure is functional. None of the theories account for the origin of the ancestral deuterostome (ambulacrarian) life cycle. Conclusions All

  7. Ether-à-go-go family voltage-gated K+ channels evolved in an ancestral metazoan and functionally diversified in a cnidarian–bilaterian ancestor

    PubMed Central

    Li, Xiaofan; Martinson, Alexandra S.; Layden, Michael J.; Diatta, Fortunay H.; Sberna, Anna P.; Simmons, David K.; Martindale, Mark Q.; Jegla, Timothy J.

    2015-01-01

    We examined the evolutionary origins of the ether-à-go-go (EAG) family of voltage-gated K+ channels, which have a strong influence on the excitability of neurons. The bilaterian EAG family comprises three gene subfamilies (Eag, Erg and Elk) distinguished by sequence conservation and functional properties. Searches of genome sequence indicate that EAG channels are metazoan specific, appearing first in ctenophores. However, phylogenetic analysis including two EAG family channels from the ctenophore Mnemiopsis leidyi indicates that the diversification of the Eag, Erg and Elk gene subfamilies occurred in a cnidarian/bilaterian ancestor after divergence from ctenophores. Erg channel function is highly conserved between cnidarians and mammals. Here we show that Eag and Elk channels from the sea anemone Nematostella vectensis (NvEag and NvElk) also share high functional conservation with mammalian channels. NvEag, like bilaterian Eag channels, has rapid kinetics, whereas NvElk activates at extremely hyperpolarized voltages, which is characteristic of Elk channels. Potent inhibition of voltage activation by extracellular protons is conserved between mammalian and Nematostella EAG channels. However, characteristic inhibition of voltage activation by Mg2+ in Eag channels and Ca2+ in Erg channels is reduced in Nematostella because of mutation of a highly conserved aspartate residue in the voltage sensor. This mutation may preserve sub-threshold activation of Nematostella Eag and Erg channels in a high divalent cation environment. mRNA in situ hybridization of EAG channels in Nematostella suggests that they are differentially expressed in distinct cell types. Most notable is the expression of NvEag in cnidocytes, a cnidarian-specific stinging cell thought to be a neuronal subtype. PMID:25696816

  8. Ligament reconstruction.

    PubMed

    Glickel, Steven Z; Gupta, Salil

    2006-05-01

    Volar ligament reconstruction is an effective technique for treating symptomatic laxity of the CMC joint of the thumb. The laxity may bea manifestation of generalized ligament laxity,post-traumatic, or metabolic (Ehler-Danlos). There construction reduces the shear forces on the joint that contribute to the development and persistence of inflammation. Although there have been only a few reports of the results of volar ligament reconstruction, the use of the procedure to treat Stage I and Stage II disease gives good to excellent results consistently. More advanced stages of disease are best treated by trapeziectomy, with or without ligament reconstruction.

  9. ACL reconstruction

    MedlinePlus

    ... This increases the chance you may have a meniscus tear. ACL reconstruction may be used for these ... When other ligaments are also injured When your meniscus is torn Before surgery, talk to your health ...

  10. Did Viruses Evolve As a Distinct Supergroup from Common Ancestors of Cells?

    PubMed Central

    Harish, Ajith; Abroi, Aare; Gough, Julian; Kurland, Charles

    2016-01-01

    The evolutionary origins of viruses according to marker gene phylogenies, as well as their relationships to the ancestors of host cells remains unclear. In a recent article Nasir and Caetano-Anollés reported that their genome-scale phylogenetic analyses based on genomic composition of protein structural-domains identify an ancient origin of the “viral supergroup” (Nasir et al. 2015. A phylogenomic data-driven exploration of viral origins and evolution. Sci Adv. 1(8):e1500527.). It suggests that viruses and host cells evolved independently from a universal common ancestor. Examination of their data and phylogenetic methods indicates that systematic errors likely affected the results. Reanalysis of the data with additional tests shows that small-genome attraction artifacts distort their phylogenomic analyses, particularly the location of the root of the phylogenetic tree of life that is central to their conclusions. These new results indicate that their suggestion of a distinct ancestry of the viral supergroup is not well supported by the evidence. PMID:27497315

  11. Evidence of duplicated Hox genes in the most recent common ancestor of extant scorpions.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Prashant P; Santiago, Marc A; González-Santillán, Edmundo; Monod, Lionel; Wheeler, Ward C

    2015-01-01

    Scorpions (order Scorpiones) are unusual among arthropods, both for the extreme heteronomy of their bauplan and for the high gene family turnover exhibited in their genomes. These phenomena appear to be correlated, as two scorpion species have been shown to possess nearly twice the number of Hox genes present in most arthropods. Segmentally offset anterior expression boundaries of a subset of Hox paralogs have been shown to correspond to transitions in segmental identities in the scorpion posterior tagmata, suggesting that posterior heteronomy in scorpions may have been achieved by neofunctionalization of Hox paralogs. However, both the first scorpion genome sequenced and the developmental genetic data are based on exemplars of Buthidae, one of 19 families of scorpions. It is therefore not known whether Hox paralogy is limited to Buthidae or widespread among scorpions. We surveyed 24 high throughput transcriptomes and the single whole genome available for scorpions, in order to test the prediction that Hox gene duplications are common to the order. We used gene tree parsimony to infer whether the paralogy was consistent with a duplication event in the scorpion common ancestor. Here we show that duplicated Hox genes in non-buthid scorpions occur in six of the ten Hox classes. Gene tree topologies and parsimony-based reconciliation of the gene trees are consistent with a duplication event in the most recent common ancestor of scorpions. These results suggest that a Hox paralogy, and by extension the model of posterior patterning established in a buthid, can be extended to non-Buthidae scorpions.

  12. Pseudogenization of the tooth gene enamelysin (MMP20) in the common ancestor of extant baleen whales.

    PubMed

    Meredith, Robert W; Gatesy, John; Cheng, Joyce; Springer, Mark S

    2011-04-07

    Whales in the suborder Mysticeti are filter feeders that use baleen to sift zooplankton and small fish from ocean waters. Adult mysticetes lack teeth, although tooth buds are present in foetal stages. Cladistic analyses suggest that functional teeth were lost in the common ancestor of crown-group Mysticeti. DNA sequences for the tooth-specific genes, ameloblastin (AMBN), enamelin (ENAM) and amelogenin (AMEL), have frameshift mutations and/or stop codons in this taxon, but none of these molecular cavities are shared by all extant mysticetes. Here, we provide the first evidence for pseudogenization of a tooth gene, enamelysin (MMP20), in the common ancestor of living baleen whales. Specifically, pseudogenization resulted from the insertion of a CHR-2 SINE retroposon in exon 2 of MMP20. Genomic and palaeontological data now provide congruent support for the loss of enamel-capped teeth on the common ancestral branch of crown-group mysticetes. The new data for MMP20 also document a polymorphic stop codon in exon 2 of the pygmy sperm whale (Kogia breviceps), which has enamel-less teeth. These results, in conjunction with the evidence for pseudogenization of MMP20 in Hoffmann's two-toed sloth (Choloepus hoffmanni), another enamel-less species, support the hypothesis that the only unique, non-overlapping function of the MMP20 gene is in enamel formation.

  13. Pseudogenization of the tooth gene enamelysin (MMP20) in the common ancestor of extant baleen whales

    PubMed Central

    Meredith, Robert W.; Gatesy, John; Cheng, Joyce; Springer, Mark S.

    2011-01-01

    Whales in the suborder Mysticeti are filter feeders that use baleen to sift zooplankton and small fish from ocean waters. Adult mysticetes lack teeth, although tooth buds are present in foetal stages. Cladistic analyses suggest that functional teeth were lost in the common ancestor of crown-group Mysticeti. DNA sequences for the tooth-specific genes, ameloblastin (AMBN), enamelin (ENAM) and amelogenin (AMEL), have frameshift mutations and/or stop codons in this taxon, but none of these molecular cavities are shared by all extant mysticetes. Here, we provide the first evidence for pseudogenization of a tooth gene, enamelysin (MMP20), in the common ancestor of living baleen whales. Specifically, pseudogenization resulted from the insertion of a CHR-2 SINE retroposon in exon 2 of MMP20. Genomic and palaeontological data now provide congruent support for the loss of enamel-capped teeth on the common ancestral branch of crown-group mysticetes. The new data for MMP20 also document a polymorphic stop codon in exon 2 of the pygmy sperm whale (Kogia breviceps), which has enamel-less teeth. These results, in conjunction with the evidence for pseudogenization of MMP20 in Hoffmann's two-toed sloth (Choloepus hoffmanni), another enamel-less species, support the hypothesis that the only unique, non-overlapping function of the MMP20 gene is in enamel formation. PMID:20861053

  14. Lung development of monotremes: evidence for the mammalian morphotype.

    PubMed

    Ferner, Kirsten; Zeller, Ulrich; Renfree, Marilyn B

    2009-02-01

    The reproductive strategies and the extent of development of neonates differ markedly between the three extant mammalian groups: the Monotremata, Marsupialia, and Eutheria. Monotremes and marsupials produce highly altricial offspring whereas the neonates of eutherian mammals range from altricial to precocial. The ability of the newborn mammal to leave the environment in which it developed depends highly on the degree of maturation of the cardio-respiratory system at the time of birth. The lung structure is thus a reflection of the metabolic capacity of neonates. The lung development in monotremes (Ornithorhynchus anatinus, Tachyglossus aculeatus), in one marsupial (Monodelphis domestica), and one altricial eutherian (Suncus murinus) species was examined. The results and additional data from the literature were integrated into a morphotype reconstruction of the lung structure of the mammalian neonate. The lung parenchyma of monotremes and marsupials was at the early terminal air sac stage at birth, with large terminal air sacs. The lung developed slowly. In contrast, altricial eutherian neonates had more advanced lungs at the late terminal air sac stage and postnatally, lung maturation proceeded rapidly. The mammalian lung is highly conserved in many respects between monotreme, marsupial, and eutherian species and the structural differences in the neonatal lungs can be explained mainly by different developmental rates. The lung structure of newborn marsupials and monotremes thus resembles the ancestral condition of the mammalian lung at birth, whereas the eutherian newborns have a more mature lung structure.

  15. Electroporation into Cultured Mammalian Embryos

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nomura, Tadashi; Takahashi, Masanori; Osumi, Noriko

    Over the last century, mammalian embryos have been used extensively as a common animal model to investigate fundamental questions in the field of developmental biology. More recently, the establishment of transgenic and gene-targeting systems in laboratory mice has enabled researchers to unveil the genetic mechanisms under lying complex developmental processes (Mak, 2007). However, our understanding of cell—cell interactions and their molecular basis in the early stages of mammalian embryogenesis is still very fragmentary. One of the major problems is the difficulty of precise manipulation and limited accessibility to mammalian embryos via uterus wall. Unfortunately, existing tissue and organotypic culture systems per se do not fully recapitulate three-dimensional, dynamic processes of organogenesis observed in vivo. Although transgenic animal technology and virus-mediated gene delivery are useful to manipulate gene expression, these techniques take much time and financial costs, which limit their use.

  16. Mammalian development does not recapitulate suspected key transformations in the evolutionary detachment of the mammalian middle ear.

    PubMed

    Ramírez-Chaves, Héctor E; Wroe, Stephen W; Selwood, Lynne; Hinds, Lyn A; Leigh, Chris; Koyabu, Daisuke; Kardjilov, Nikolay; Weisbecker, Vera

    2016-01-13

    The ectotympanic, malleus and incus of the developing mammalian middle ear (ME) are initially attached to the dentary via Meckel's cartilage, betraying their origins from the primary jaw joint of land vertebrates. This recapitulation has prompted mostly unquantified suggestions that several suspected--but similarly unquantified--key evolutionary transformations leading to the mammalian ME are recapitulated in development, through negative allometry and posterior/medial displacement of ME bones relative to the jaw joint. Here we show, using µCT reconstructions, that neither allometric nor topological change is quantifiable in the pre-detachment ME development of six marsupials and two monotremes. Also, differential ME positioning in the two monotreme species is not recapitulated. This challenges the developmental prerequisites of widely cited evolutionary scenarios of definitive mammalian middle ear (DMME) evolution, highlighting the requirement for further fossil evidence to test these hypotheses. Possible association between rear molar eruption, full ME ossification and ME detachment in marsupials suggests functional divergence between dentary and ME as a trigger for developmental, and possibly also evolutionary, ME detachment. The stable positioning of the dentary and ME supports suggestions that a 'partial mammalian middle ear' as found in many mammaliaforms--probably with a cartilaginous Meckel's cartilage--represents the only developmentally plausible evolutionary DMME precursor.

  17. Mammalian development does not recapitulate suspected key transformations in the evolutionary detachment of the mammalian middle ear

    PubMed Central

    Ramírez-Chaves, Héctor E.; Wroe, Stephen W.; Selwood, Lynne; Hinds, Lyn A.; Leigh, Chris; Koyabu, Daisuke; Kardjilov, Nikolay; Weisbecker, Vera

    2016-01-01

    The ectotympanic, malleus and incus of the developing mammalian middle ear (ME) are initially attached to the dentary via Meckel's cartilage, betraying their origins from the primary jaw joint of land vertebrates. This recapitulation has prompted mostly unquantified suggestions that several suspected—but similarly unquantified—key evolutionary transformations leading to the mammalian ME are recapitulated in development, through negative allometry and posterior/medial displacement of ME bones relative to the jaw joint. Here we show, using µCT reconstructions, that neither allometric nor topological change is quantifiable in the pre-detachment ME development of six marsupials and two monotremes. Also, differential ME positioning in the two monotreme species is not recapitulated. This challenges the developmental prerequisites of widely cited evolutionary scenarios of definitive mammalian middle ear (DMME) evolution, highlighting the requirement for further fossil evidence to test these hypotheses. Possible association between rear molar eruption, full ME ossification and ME detachment in marsupials suggests functional divergence between dentary and ME as a trigger for developmental, and possibly also evolutionary, ME detachment. The stable positioning of the dentary and ME supports suggestions that a ‘partial mammalian middle ear’ as found in many mammaliaforms—probably with a cartilaginous Meckel's cartilage—represents the only developmentally plausible evolutionary DMME precursor. PMID:26763693

  18. Aberrant Time to Most Recent Common Ancestor as a Signature of Natural Selection.

    PubMed

    Hunter-Zinck, Haley; Clark, Andrew G

    2015-10-01

    Natural selection inference methods often target one mode of selection of a particular age and strength. However, detecting multiple modes simultaneously, or with atypical representations, would be advantageous for understanding a population's evolutionary history. We have developed an anomaly detection algorithm using distributions of pairwise time to most recent common ancestor (TMRCA) to simultaneously detect multiple modes of natural selection in whole-genome sequences. As natural selection distorts local genealogies in distinct ways, the method uses pairwise TMRCA distributions, which approximate genealogies at a nonrecombining locus, to detect distortions without targeting a specific mode of selection. We evaluate the performance of our method, TSel, for both positive and balancing selection over different time-scales and selection strengths and compare TSel's performance with that of other methods. We then apply TSel to the Complete Genomics diversity panel, a set of human whole-genome sequences, and recover loci previously inferred to be under positive or balancing selection.

  19. The genome sequences of Arachis duranensis and Arachis ipaensis, the diploid ancestors of cultivated peanut.

    PubMed

    Bertioli, David John; Cannon, Steven B; Froenicke, Lutz; Huang, Guodong; Farmer, Andrew D; Cannon, Ethalinda K S; Liu, Xin; Gao, Dongying; Clevenger, Josh; Dash, Sudhansu; Ren, Longhui; Moretzsohn, Márcio C; Shirasawa, Kenta; Huang, Wei; Vidigal, Bruna; Abernathy, Brian; Chu, Ye; Niederhuth, Chad E; Umale, Pooja; Araújo, Ana Cláudia G; Kozik, Alexander; Kim, Kyung Do; Burow, Mark D; Varshney, Rajeev K; Wang, Xingjun; Zhang, Xinyou; Barkley, Noelle; Guimarães, Patrícia M; Isobe, Sachiko; Guo, Baozhu; Liao, Boshou; Stalker, H Thomas; Schmitz, Robert J; Scheffler, Brian E; Leal-Bertioli, Soraya C M; Xun, Xu; Jackson, Scott A; Michelmore, Richard; Ozias-Akins, Peggy

    2016-04-01

    Cultivated peanut (Arachis hypogaea) is an allotetraploid with closely related subgenomes of a total size of ∼2.7 Gb. This makes the assembly of chromosomal pseudomolecules very challenging. As a foundation to understanding the genome of cultivated peanut, we report the genome sequences of its diploid ancestors (Arachis duranensis and Arachis ipaensis). We show that these genomes are similar to cultivated peanut's A and B subgenomes and use them to identify candidate disease resistance genes, to guide tetraploid transcript assemblies and to detect genetic exchange between cultivated peanut's subgenomes. On the basis of remarkably high DNA identity of the A. ipaensis genome and the B subgenome of cultivated peanut and biogeographic evidence, we conclude that A. ipaensis may be a direct descendant of the same population that contributed the B subgenome to cultivated peanut.

  20. Adaptive evolution of vertebrate-type cryptochrome in the ancestors of Hymenoptera.

    PubMed

    Wang, Bo; Xiao, Jin-Hua; Bian, Sheng-Nan; Gu, Hai-Feng; Huang, Da-Wei

    2013-02-23

    One of the most mysterious aspects of insect clock mechanisms is that some insects, including Hymenoptera and Tribolium, only express a vertebrate-type cryptochrome (cry2). It is unknown whether or not cry2 underwent adaptive evolution in these insects. In the present study, we cloned and sequenced the full-length cry2 from a fig pollinator species, Ceratosolen solmsi (Hymenoptera: Chalcidoidea: Agaonidae), and examined the molecular evolution and daily expression of this gene. Our results suggest that cry2 underwent positive selection in the branch leading to hymenopteran insects. The function of CRY2 might have been fixed since undergoing natural selection in the ancestor of Hymenoptera. Male pollinators showed stronger rhythmicity in the host figs, which reflect an adaptation to their life cycles.

  1. Large number of ultraconserved elements were already present in the jawed vertebrate ancestor.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jianli; Lee, Alison P; Kodzius, Rimantas; Brenner, Sydney; Venkatesh, Byrappa

    2009-03-01

    Stephen (2008) identified 13,736 ultraconserved elements (UCEs) in placental mammals and investigated their evolution in opossum, chicken, frog, and fugu. They found that there was a massive expansion of UCEs during tetrapod evolution and the substitution rate in UCEs showed a significant decline in tetrapods compared with fugu, suggesting they were exapted in tetrapods. They considered it unlikely that these elements are ancient but evolved at a higher rate in teleost fishes. In this study, we investigated the evolution of UCEs in a cartilaginous fish, the elephant shark and show that nearly half the UCEs were present in the jawed vertebrate ancestor. The substitution rate in UCEs is higher in fugu than in elephant shark, and approximately one-third of ancient UCEs have diverged beyond recognition in teleost fishes. These data indicate that UCEs have evolved at a higher rate in teleost fishes, which may have implications for their vast diversity and evolutionary success.

  2. Quantification of inbreeding due to distant ancestors and its detection using dense single nucleotide polymorphism data.

    PubMed

    Keller, Matthew C; Visscher, Peter M; Goddard, Michael E

    2011-09-01

    Inbreeding depression, which refers to reduced fitness among offspring of related parents, has traditionally been studied using pedigrees. In practice, pedigree information is difficult to obtain, potentially unreliable, and rarely assessed for inbreeding arising from common ancestors who lived more than a few generations ago. Recently, there has been excitement about using SNP data to estimate inbreeding (F) arising from distant common ancestors in apparently "outbred" populations. Statistical power to detect inbreeding depression using SNP data depends on the actual variation in inbreeding in a population, the accuracy of detecting that with marker data, the effect size, and the sample size. No one has yet investigated what variation in F is expected in SNP data as a function of population size, and it is unclear which estimate of F is optimal for detecting inbreeding depression. In the present study, we use theory, simulated genetic data, and real genetic data to find the optimal estimate of F, to quantify the likely variation in F in populations of various sizes, and to estimate the power to detect inbreeding depression. We find that F estimated from runs of homozygosity (Froh), which reflects shared ancestry of genetic haplotypes, retains variation in even large populations (e.g., SD=0.5% when Ne=10,000) and is likely to be the most powerful method of detecting inbreeding effects from among several alternative estimates of F. However, large samples (e.g., 12,000-65,000) will be required to detect inbreeding depression for likely effect sizes, and so studies using Froh to date have probably been underpowered.

  3. Locomotion and posture from the common hominoid ancestor to fully modern hominins, with special reference to the last common panin/hominin ancestor

    PubMed Central

    Crompton, R H; Vereecke, E E; Thorpe, S K S

    2008-01-01

    Based on our knowledge of locomotor biomechanics and ecology we predict the locomotion and posture of the last common ancestors of (a) great and lesser apes and their close fossil relatives (hominoids); (b) chimpanzees, bonobos and modern humans (hominines); and (c) modern humans and their fossil relatives (hominins). We evaluate our propositions against the fossil record in the context of a broader review of evolution of the locomotor system from the earliest hominoids of modern aspect (crown hominoids) to early modern Homo sapiens. While some early East African stem hominoids were pronograde, it appears that the adaptations which best characterize the crown hominoids are orthogrady and an ability to abduct the arm above the shoulder – rather than, as is often thought, manual suspension sensu stricto. At 7–9 Ma (not much earlier than the likely 4–8 Ma divergence date for panins and hominins, see Bradley, 2008) there were crown hominoids in southern Europe which were adapted to moving in an orthograde posture, supported primarily on the hindlimb, in an arboreal, and possibly for Oreopithecus, a terrestrial context. By 7 Ma, Sahelanthropus provides evidence of a Central African hominin, panin or possibly gorilline adapted to orthogrady, and both orthogrady and habitually highly extended postures of the hip are evident in the arboreal East African protohominin Orrorin at 6 Ma. If the traditional idea that hominins passed through a terrestrial ‘knuckle-walking’ phase is correct, not only does it have to be explained how a quadrupedal gait typified by flexed postures of the hindlimb could have preadapted the body for the hominin acquisition of straight-legged erect bipedality, but we would have to accept a transition from stem-hominoid pronogrady to crown hominoid orthogrady, back again to pronogrady in the African apes and then back to orthogrady in hominins. Hand-assisted arboreal bipedality, which is part of a continuum of orthograde behaviours, is used by

  4. Project Reconstruct.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Helisek, Harriet; Pratt, Donald

    1994-01-01

    Presents a project in which students monitor their use of trash, input and analyze information via a database and computerized graphs, and "reconstruct" extinct or endangered animals from recyclable materials. The activity was done with second-grade students over a period of three to four weeks. (PR)

  5. ACL reconstruction - discharge

    MedlinePlus

    Anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction - discharge; ACL reconstruction - discharge ... had surgery to reconstruct your anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). The surgeon drilled holes in the bones of ...

  6. Evolution of mammalian sensorimotor cortex: thalamic projections to parietal cortical areas in Monodelphis domestica.

    PubMed

    Dooley, James C; Franca, João G; Seelke, Adele M H; Cooke, Dylan F; Krubitzer, Leah A

    2014-01-01

    The current experiments build upon previous studies designed to reveal the network of parietal cortical areas present in the common mammalian ancestor. Understanding this ancestral network is essential for highlighting the basic somatosensory circuitry present in all mammals, and how this basic plan was modified to generate species specific behaviors. Our animal model, the short-tailed opossum (Monodelphis domestica), is a South American marsupial that has been proposed to have a similar ecological niche and morphology to the earliest common mammalian ancestor. In this investigation, we injected retrograde neuroanatomical tracers into the face and body representations of primary somatosensory cortex (S1), the rostral and caudal somatosensory fields (SR and SC), as well as a multimodal region (MM). Projections from different architectonically defined thalamic nuclei were then quantified. Our results provide further evidence to support the hypothesized basic mammalian plan of thalamic projections to S1, with the lateral and medial ventral posterior thalamic nuclei (VPl and VPm) projecting to S1 body and S1 face, respectively. Additional strong projections are from the medial division of posterior nucleus (Pom). SR receives projections from several midline nuclei, including the medial dorsal, ventral medial nucleus, and Pom. SC and MM show similar patterns of connectivity, with projections from the ventral anterior and ventral lateral nuclei, VPm and VPl, and the entire posterior nucleus (medial and lateral). Notably, MM is distinguished from SC by relatively dense projections from the dorsal division of the lateral geniculate nucleus and pulvinar. We discuss the finding that S1 of the short-tailed opossum has a similar pattern of projections as other marsupials and mammals, but also some distinct projections not present in other mammals. Further we provide additional support for a primitive posterior parietal cortex which receives input from multiple modalities.

  7. Evolution of mammalian sensorimotor cortex: thalamic projections to parietal cortical areas in Monodelphis domestica

    PubMed Central

    Dooley, James C.; Franca, João G.; Seelke, Adele M. H.; Cooke, Dylan F.; Krubitzer, Leah A.

    2015-01-01

    The current experiments build upon previous studies designed to reveal the network of parietal cortical areas present in the common mammalian ancestor. Understanding this ancestral network is essential for highlighting the basic somatosensory circuitry present in all mammals, and how this basic plan was modified to generate species specific behaviors. Our animal model, the short-tailed opossum (Monodelphis domestica), is a South American marsupial that has been proposed to have a similar ecological niche and morphology to the earliest common mammalian ancestor. In this investigation, we injected retrograde neuroanatomical tracers into the face and body representations of primary somatosensory cortex (S1), the rostral and caudal somatosensory fields (SR and SC), as well as a multimodal region (MM). Projections from different architectonically defined thalamic nuclei were then quantified. Our results provide further evidence to support the hypothesized basic mammalian plan of thalamic projections to S1, with the lateral and medial ventral posterior thalamic nuclei (VPl and VPm) projecting to S1 body and S1 face, respectively. Additional strong projections are from the medial division of posterior nucleus (Pom). SR receives projections from several midline nuclei, including the medial dorsal, ventral medial nucleus, and Pom. SC and MM show similar patterns of connectivity, with projections from the ventral anterior and ventral lateral nuclei, VPm and VPl, and the entire posterior nucleus (medial and lateral). Notably, MM is distinguished from SC by relatively dense projections from the dorsal division of the lateral geniculate nucleus and pulvinar. We discuss the finding that S1 of the short-tailed opossum has a similar pattern of projections as other marsupials and mammals, but also some distinct projections not present in other mammals. Further we provide additional support for a primitive posterior parietal cortex which receives input from multiple modalities. PMID

  8. The Last Universal Common Ancestor: emergence, constitution and genetic legacy of an elusive forerunner

    PubMed Central

    Glansdorff, Nicolas; Xu, Ying; Labedan, Bernard

    2008-01-01

    Background Since the reclassification of all life forms in three Domains (Archaea, Bacteria, Eukarya), the identity of their alleged forerunner (Last Universal Common Ancestor or LUCA) has been the subject of extensive controversies: progenote or already complex organism, prokaryote or protoeukaryote, thermophile or mesophile, product of a protracted progression from simple replicators to complex cells or born in the cradle of "catalytically closed" entities? We present a critical survey of the topic and suggest a scenario. Results LUCA does not appear to have been a simple, primitive, hyperthermophilic prokaryote but rather a complex community of protoeukaryotes with a RNA genome, adapted to a broad range of moderate temperatures, genetically redundant, morphologically and metabolically diverse. LUCA's genetic redundancy predicts loss of paralogous gene copies in divergent lineages to be a significant source of phylogenetic anomalies, i.e. instances where a protein tree departs from the SSU-rRNA genealogy; consequently, horizontal gene transfer may not have the rampant character assumed by many. Examining membrane lipids suggest LUCA had sn1,2 ester fatty acid lipids from which Archaea emerged from the outset as thermophilic by "thermoreduction," with a new type of membrane, composed of sn2,3 ether isoprenoid lipids; this occurred without major enzymatic reconversion. Bacteria emerged by reductive evolution from LUCA and some lineages further acquired extreme thermophily by convergent evolution. This scenario is compatible with the hypothesis that the RNA to DNA transition resulted from different viral invasions as proposed by Forterre. Beyond the controversy opposing "replication first" to metabolism first", the predictive arguments of theories on "catalytic closure" or "compositional heredity" heavily weigh in favour of LUCA's ancestors having emerged as complex, self-replicating entities from which a genetic code arose under natural selection. Conclusion Life

  9. Bioenergetics of Mammalian Sperm Capacitation

    PubMed Central

    Ferramosca, Alessandra; Zara, Vincenzo

    2014-01-01

    After ejaculation, the mammalian male gamete must undergo the capacitation process, which is a prerequisite for egg fertilization. The bioenergetics of sperm capacitation is poorly understood despite its fundamental role in sustaining the biochemical and molecular events occurring during gamete activation. Glycolysis and mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) are the two major metabolic pathways producing ATP which is the primary source of energy for spermatozoa. Since recent data suggest that spermatozoa have the ability to use different metabolic substrates, the main aim of this work is to present a broad overview of the current knowledge on the energy-producing metabolic pathways operating inside sperm mitochondria during capacitation in different mammalian species. Metabolism of glucose and of other energetic substrates, such as pyruvate, lactate, and citrate, is critically analyzed. Such knowledge, besides its obvious importance for basic science, could eventually translate into the development of novel strategies for treatment of male infertility, artificial reproduction, and sperm selection methods. PMID:24791005

  10. Area and mammalian elevational diversity.

    PubMed

    McCain, Christy M

    2007-01-01

    Elevational gradients hold enormous potential for understanding general properties of biodiversity. Like latitudinal gradients, the hypotheses for diversity patterns can be grouped into historical explanations, climatic drivers, and spatial hypotheses. The spatial hypotheses include the species-area effect and spatial constraint (mid-domain effect null models). I test these two spatial hypotheses using regional diversity patterns for mammals (non-volant small mammals and bats) along 34 elevational gradients spanning 24.4 degrees S-40.4 degrees N latitude. There was high variability in the fit to the species-area hypothesis and the mid-domain effect. Both hypotheses can be eliminated as primary drivers of elevational diversity. Area and spatial constraint both represent sources of error rather than mechanisms underlying these mammalian diversity patterns. Similar results are expected for other vertebrate taxa, plants, and invertebrates since they show comparable distributions of elevational diversity patterns to mammalian patterns.

  11. Multiple origins of Heliozoa from flagellate ancestors: New cryptist subphylum Corbihelia, superclass Corbistoma, and monophyly of Haptista, Cryptista, Hacrobia and Chromista.

    PubMed

    Cavalier-Smith, Thomas; Chao, Ema E; Lewis, Rhodri

    2015-12-01

    Heliozoan protists have radiating cell projections (axopodia) supported by microtubular axonemes nucleated by the centrosome and bearing granule-like extrusomes for catching prey. To clarify previously confused heliozoan phylogeny we sequenced partial transcriptomes of two tiny naked heliozoa, the endohelean Microheliella maris and centrohelid Oxnerella marina, and the cercozoan pseudoheliozoan Minimassisteria diva. Phylogenetic analysis of 187 genes confirms that all are chromists; but centrohelids (microtubules arranged as hexagons and triangles) are not sisters to Endohelea having axonemes in transnuclear cytoplasmic channels (triangular or square microtubular arrays). Centrohelids are strongly sister to haptophytes (together phylum Haptista); we explain the common origins of their axopodia and haptonema. Microheliella is sister to new superclass Corbistoma (zooflagellate Telonemea and Picomonadea, with asymmetric microfilamentous pharyngeal basket), showing that these axopodial protists evolved independently from zooflagellate ancestors. We group Corbistoma and Endohelea as new cryptist subphylum Corbihelia with dense fibrillar interorganellar connections; endohelean axopodia and Telonema cortex are ultrastructurally related. Differently sampled trees clarify why corticate multigene eukaryote phylogeny is problematic: long-branch artefacts probably distort deep multigene phylogeny of corticates (Plantae, Chromista); basal radiations may be contradictorily reconstructed because of their extreme closeness and the Bayesian star-tree paradox. Haptista and Hacrobia are holophyletic, and Chromista probably are.

  12. Mammalian Polyamine Metabolism and Function

    PubMed Central

    Pegg, Anthony E.

    2009-01-01

    Summary Polyamines are ubiquitous small basic molecules that play multiple essential roles in mammalian physiology. Their cellular content is highly regulated and there is convincing evidence that altered metabolism is involvement in many disease states. Drugs altering polyamine levels may therefore have a variety of important targets. This review will summarize the current state of understanding of polyamine metabolism and function, the regulation of polyamine content, and heritable pathological conditions that may be derived from altered polyamine metabolism. PMID:19603518

  13. Studies in Historical Replication in Psychology VII: The Relative Utility of "Ancestor Analysis" from Scientific and Educational Vantages

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ranney, Michael Andrew

    2008-01-01

    This article discusses, from various vantages, Ryan Tweney's (this issue) pedagogical technique of employing historical replications of psychological experiments with graduate students in psychology. A "prima facie" perspective suggests great promise for this sort of academic "ancestor analysis," particularly given the enthusiasm and skill…

  14. GLUTs and mammalian sperm metabolism.

    PubMed

    Bucci, Diego; Rodriguez-Gil, Juan Enrique; Vallorani, Claudia; Spinaci, Marcella; Galeati, Giovanna; Tamanini, Carlo

    2011-01-01

    Mammalian cells use glucides as a substrate that can be catabolized through glycolitic pathways or oxidative phosphorylation, used as a source of reducing potential, or used for anabolic aims. An important role in supplying cells with energy is played by different membrane proteins that can actively (sodium-dependent glucose transporters) or passively (glucose transporters; GLUT) transport hexoses through the lipidic bilayer. In particular, GLUTs are a family of 13 proteins that facilitate the transport of sugars and have a peculiar distribution in different tissues as well as a particular affinity for substrates. These proteins are also present in mature sperm cells, which, in fact, need carriers for uptake energetic sources that are important for maintaining cell basic activity as well as specific functions, such as motility and fertilization ability. Likewise, several GLUTs have been studied in various mammalian species (man, bull, rat, mouse, boar, dog, stallion, and donkey) to point out both their actual presence or absence and their localization on plasma membrane. The aim of this work is to give an overall picture of the studies available on GLUTs in mammalian spermatozoa at this moment, pointing out the species peculiarity, the possible role of these proteins, and the potential future research on this item.

  15. Divergent genetic mechanisms underlie reversals to radial floral symmetry from diverse zygomorphic flowered ancestors

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Wenheng; Steinmann, Victor W.; Nikolov, Lachezar; Kramer, Elena M.; Davis, Charles C.

    2013-01-01

    Malpighiaceae possess flowers with a unique bilateral symmetry (zygomorphy), which is a hypothesized adaptation associated with specialization on neotropical oil bee pollinators. Gene expression of two representatives of the CYC2 lineage of floral symmetry TCP genes, CYC2A and CYC2B, demarcate the adaxial (dorsal) region of the flower in the characteristic zygomorphic flowers of most Malpighiaceae. Several clades within the family, however, have independently lost their specialized oil bee pollinators and reverted to radial flowers (actinomorphy) like their ancestors. Here, we investigate CYC2 expression associated with four independent reversals to actinomorphy. We demonstrate that these reversals are always associated with alteration of the highly conserved CYC2 expression pattern observed in most New World (NW) Malpighiaceae. In NW Lasiocarpus and Old World (OW) Microsteria, the expression of CYC2-like genes has expanded to include the ventral region of the corolla. Thus, the pattern of gene expression in these species has become radialized, which is comparable to what has been reported in the radial flowered legume clade Cadia. In striking contrast, in NW Psychopterys and OW Sphedamnocarpus, CYC2-like expression is entirely absent or at barely detectable levels. This is more similar to the pattern of CYC2 expression observed in radial flowered Arabidopsis. These results collectively indicate that, regardless of geographic distribution, reversals to similar floral phenotypes in this large tropical angiosperm clade have evolved via different genetic changes from an otherwise highly conserved developmental program. PMID:23970887

  16. Punctuated emergences of genetic and phenotypic innovations in eumetazoan, bilaterian, euteleostome, and hominidae ancestors.

    PubMed

    Wenger, Yvan; Galliot, Brigitte

    2013-01-01

    Phenotypic traits derive from the selective recruitment of genetic materials over macroevolutionary times, and protein-coding genes constitute an essential component of these materials. We took advantage of the recent production of genomic scale data from sponges and cnidarians, sister groups from eumetazoans and bilaterians, respectively, to date the emergence of human proteins and to infer the timing of acquisition of novel traits through metazoan evolution. Comparing the proteomes of 23 eukaryotes, we find that 33% human proteins have an ortholog in nonmetazoan species. This premetazoan proteome associates with 43% of all annotated human biological processes. Subsequently, four major waves of innovations can be inferred in the last common ancestors of eumetazoans, bilaterians, euteleostomi (bony vertebrates), and hominidae, largely specific to each epoch, whereas early branching deuterostome and chordate phyla show very few innovations. Interestingly, groups of proteins that act together in their modern human functions often originated concomitantly, although the corresponding human phenotypes frequently emerged later. For example, the three cnidarians Acropora, Nematostella, and Hydra express a highly similar protein inventory, and their protein innovations can be affiliated either to traits shared by all eumetazoans (gut differentiation, neurogenesis); or to bilaterian traits present in only some cnidarians (eyes, striated muscle); or to traits not identified yet in this phylum (mesodermal layer, endocrine glands). The variable correspondence between phenotypes predicted from protein enrichments and observed phenotypes suggests that a parallel mechanism repeatedly produce similar phenotypes, thanks to novel regulatory events that independently tie preexisting conserved genetic modules.

  17. Evidence for endothermic ancestors of crocodiles at the stem of archosaur evolution.

    PubMed

    Seymour, Roger S; Bennett-Stamper, Christina L; Johnston, Sonya D; Carrier, David R; Grigg, Gordon C

    2004-01-01

    Physiological, anatomical, and developmental features of the crocodilian heart support the paleontological evidence that the ancestors of living crocodilians were active and endothermic, but the lineage reverted to ectothermy when it invaded the aquatic, ambush predator niche. In endotherms, there is a functional nexus between high metabolic rates, high blood flow rates, and complete separation of high systemic blood pressure from low pulmonary blood pressure in a four-chambered heart. Ectotherms generally lack all of these characteristics, but crocodilians retain a four-chambered heart. However, crocodilians have a neurally controlled, pulmonary bypass shunt that is functional in diving. Shunting occurs outside of the heart and involves the left aortic arch that originates from the right ventricle, the foramen of Panizza between the left and right aortic arches, and the cog-tooth valve at the base of the pulmonary artery. Developmental studies show that all of these uniquely crocodilian features are secondarily derived, indicating a shift from the complete separation of blood flow of endotherms to the controlled shunting of ectotherms. We present other evidence for endothermy in stem archosaurs and suggest that some dinosaurs may have inherited the trait.

  18. Hybrid apomicts trapped in the ecological niches of their sexual ancestors

    PubMed Central

    Mau, Martin; Lovell, John T.; Corral, José M.; Kiefer, Christiane; Koch, Marcus A.; Aliyu, Olawale M.; Sharbel, Timothy F.

    2015-01-01

    Asexual reproduction is expected to reduce the adaptive potential to novel or changing environmental conditions, restricting or altering the ecological niche of asexual lineages. Asexual lineages of plants and animals are typically polyploid, an attribute that may influence their genetic variation, plasticity, adaptive potential, and niche breadth. The genus Boechera (Brassicaceae) represents an ideal model to test the relative ecological and biogeographic impacts of reproductive mode and ploidy because it is composed of diploid sexual and both diploid and polyploid asexual (i.e., apomictic) lineages. Here, we demonstrate a strong association between a transcriptionally conserved allele and apomictic seed formation. We then use this allele as a proxy apomixis marker in 1,649 accessions to demonstrate that apomixis is likely to be a common feature across the Boechera phylogeny. Phylogeographic analyses of these data demonstrate (i) species-specific niche differentiation in sexuals, (ii) extensive niche conservation between differing reproductive modes of the same species, (iii) ploidy-specific niche differentiation within and among species, and (iv) occasional niche drift between apomicts and their sexual ancestors. We conclude that ploidy is a substantially stronger and more common driver of niche divergence within and across Boechera species although variation in both traits may not necessarily lead to niche evolution on the species scale. PMID:25902513

  19. An early modern human from Romania with a recent Neanderthal ancestor

    PubMed Central

    Fu, Qiaomei; Hajdinjak, Mateja; Moldovan, Oana Teodora; Constantin, Silviu; Mallick, Swapan; Skoglund, Pontus; Patterson, Nick; Rohland, Nadin; Lazaridis, Iosif; Nickel, Birgit; Viola, Bence; Prüfer, Kay; Meyer, Matthias; Kelso, Janet; Reich, David; Pääbo, Svante

    2015-01-01

    Neanderthals are thought to have disappeared in Europe ~39,000–41,000 years ago but they have contributed one to three percent of the DNA of present-day people in Eurasia1. Here, we analyze DNA from a 37,000–42,000-year-old2 modern human from Peştera cu Oase, Romania. Although the specimen contains small amounts of human DNA, we use an enrichment strategy to isolate sites that are informative about its relationship to Neanderthals and present-day humans. We find that on the order of six to nine percent of the genome of the Oase individual is derived from Neanderthals, more than any other modern human sequenced to date. Three chromosomal segments of Neanderthal ancestry are over 50 centimorgans in size, indicating that this individual had a Neanderthal ancestor as recently as four to six generations back. However, the Oase individual does not share more alleles with later Europeans than with East Asians, suggesting that the Oase population did not contribute substantially to later humans in Europe. PMID:26098372

  20. Ontogenetic differences in heterostylous plants and implications for development from a herkogamous ancestor.

    PubMed

    Faivre, A E

    2000-06-01

    Alternative ontogenetic pathways among heterostylous species of Rubiaceae may reflect differences in their evolutionary histories. In this study, measurements were taken at different developmental stages on a series of long-styled (LS) and short-styled (SS) buds of the heterostylous taxa Psychotria chiapensis, P. poeppigiana, and Bouvardia ternifolia (all Rubiaceae). Results indicated that modifications in growth rates of stamens relative to corollas in all three species led to differences in anther heights between LS and SS flowers. Distinct style heights for LS and SS flowers of P. chiapensis and P. poeppigiana originate in the earlier stages of bud development and are maintained as styles elongate at equal rates. This contrasts with B. ternifolia, which has differences in style heights resulting from unequal relative growth rates between floral morphs. The "approach herkogamous" floral morphology, defined by having stigmas positioned above anthers, has been proposed as a potential evolutionary precursor for heterostylous taxa. To examine this hypothesis, floral development of two species with approach herkogamous morphologies, Psychotria pittieri and P. brachiata, was compared to that of the three heterostylous taxa. Differences in the relative rates of style elongation for flowers of approach herkogamous versus heterostylous species predict additional steps in the original model for the evolution of heterostyly from an approach herkogamous ancestor. The diversity of heterostylous ontogenies found within Rubiaceae provides insight into potential evolutionary pathways for this sexual system in other angiosperm families.

  1. Structural Similarities between Thiamin-Binding Protein and Thiaminase-I Suggest a Common Ancestor

    SciTech Connect

    Soriano, Erika V.; Rajashankar, Kanagalaghatta R.; Hanes, Jeremiah W.; Bale, Shridhar; Begley, Tadhg P.; Ealick, Steven E.

    2008-06-30

    ATP-binding cassette (ABC) transporters are responsible for the transport of a wide variety of water-soluble molecules and ions into prokaryotic cells. In Gram-negative bacteria, periplasmic-binding proteins deliver ions or molecules such as thiamin to the membrane-bound ABC transporter. The gene for the thiamin-binding protein tbpA has been identified in both Escherichia coli and Salmonella typhimurium. Here we report the crystal structure of TbpA from E. coli with bound thiamin monophosphate. The structure was determined at 2.25 {angstrom} resolution using single-wavelength anomalous diffraction experiments, despite the presence of nonmerohedral twinning. The crystal structure shows that TbpA belongs to the group II periplasmic-binding protein family. Equilibrium binding measurements showed similar dissociation constants for thiamin, thiamin monophosphate, and thiamin pyrophosphate. Analysis of the binding site by molecular modeling demonstrated how TbpA binds all three forms of thiamin. A comparison of TbpA and thiaminase-I, a thiamin-degrading enzyme, revealed structural similarity between the two proteins, especially in domain 1, suggesting that the two proteins evolved from a common ancestor.

  2. The evolution of air resonance power efficiency in the violin and its ancestors.

    PubMed

    Nia, Hadi T; Jain, Ankita D; Liu, Yuming; Alam, Mohammad-Reza; Barnas, Roman; Makris, Nicholas C

    2015-03-08

    The fact that acoustic radiation from a violin at air-cavity resonance is monopolar and can be determined by pure volume change is used to help explain related aspects of violin design evolution. By determining the acoustic conductance of arbitrarily shaped sound holes, it is found that air flow at the perimeter rather than the broader sound-hole area dominates acoustic conductance, and coupling between compressible air within the violin and its elastic structure lowers the Helmholtz resonance frequency from that found for a corresponding rigid instrument by roughly a semitone. As a result of the former, it is found that as sound-hole geometry of the violin's ancestors slowly evolved over centuries from simple circles to complex f-holes, the ratio of inefficient, acoustically inactive to total sound-hole area was decimated, roughly doubling air-resonance power efficiency. F-hole length then slowly increased by roughly 30% across two centuries in the renowned workshops of Amati, Stradivari and Guarneri, favouring instruments with higher air-resonance power, through a corresponding power increase of roughly 60%. By evolution-rate analysis, these changes are found to be consistent with mutations arising within the range of accidental replication fluctuations from craftsmanship limitations with subsequent selection favouring instruments with higher air-resonance power.

  3. In search of the last common ancestor: new findings on wild chimpanzees

    PubMed Central

    McGrew, W. C.

    2010-01-01

    Modelling the behaviour of extinct hominins is essential in order to devise useful hypotheses of our species' evolutionary origins for testing in the palaeontological and archaeological records. One approach is to model the last common ancestor (LCA) of living apes and humans, based on current ethological and ecological knowledge of our closest living relations. Such referential modelling is based on rigorous, ongoing field studies of the chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) and the bonobo (Pan paniscus). This paper reviews recent findings from nature, focusing on those with direct implications for hominin evolution, e.g. apes, using elementary technology to access basic resources such as food and water, or sheltering in caves or bathing as thermoregulatory adaptations. I give preference to studies that directly address key issues, such as whether stone artefacts are detectible before the Oldowan, based on the percussive technology of hammer and anvil use by living apes. Detailed comparative studies of chimpanzees living in varied habitats, from rainforest to savannah, reveal that some behavioural patterns are universal (e.g. shelter construction), while others show marked (e.g. extractive foraging) or nuanced (e.g. courtship) cross-populational variation. These findings allow us to distinguish between retained, primitive traits of the LCA versus derived ones in the human lineage. PMID:20855301

  4. Fine scale genetic structure in the wild ancestor of maize (Zea mays ssp. parviglumis).

    PubMed

    Van Heerwaarden, Joost; Ross-Ibarra, Jeffrey; Doebley, John; Glaubitz, Jeffrey C; González, Jose De Jesús Sánchez; Gaut, Brandon S; Eguiarte, Luis E

    2010-03-01

    Analysis of fine scale genetic structure in continuous populations of outcrossing plant species has traditionally been limited by the availability of sufficient markers. We used a set of 468 SNPs to characterize fine-scale genetic structure within and between two dense stands of the wild ancestor of maize, teosinte (Zea mays ssp. parviglumis). Our analyses confirmed that teosinte is highly outcrossing and showed little population structure over short distances. We found that the two populations were clearly genetically differentiated, although the actual level of differentiation was low. Spatial autocorrelation of relatedness was observed within both sites but was somewhat stronger in one of the populations. Using principal component analysis, we found evidence for significant local differentiation in the population with stronger spatial autocorrelation. This differentiation was associated with pronounced shifts in the first two principal components along the field. These shifts corresponded to changes in allele frequencies, potentially due to local topographical features. There was little evidence for selection at individual loci as a contributing factor to differentiation. Our results demonstrate that significant local differentiation may, but need not, co-occur with spatial autocorrelation of relatedness. The present study represents one of the most detailed analyses of local genetic structure to date and provides a benchmark for future studies dealing with fine scale patterns of genetic diversity in natural plant populations.

  5. CloudLCA: finding the lowest common ancestor in metagenome analysis using cloud computing.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Guoguang; Bu, Dechao; Liu, Changning; Li, Jing; Yang, Jian; Liu, Zhiyong; Zhao, Yi; Chen, Runsheng

    2012-02-01

    Estimating taxonomic content constitutes a key problem in metagenomic sequencing data analysis. However, extracting such content from high-throughput data of next-generation sequencing is very time-consuming with the currently available software. Here, we present CloudLCA, a parallel LCA algorithm that significantly improves the efficiency of determining taxonomic composition in metagenomic data analysis. Results show that CloudLCA (1) has a running time nearly linear with the increase of dataset magnitude, (2) displays linear speedup as the number of processors grows, especially for large datasets, and (3) reaches a speed of nearly 215 million reads each minute on a cluster with ten thin nodes. In comparison with MEGAN, a well-known metagenome analyzer, the speed of CloudLCA is up to 5 more times faster, and its peak memory usage is approximately 18.5% that of MEGAN, running on a fat node. CloudLCA can be run on one multiprocessor node or a cluster. It is expected to be part of MEGAN to accelerate analyzing reads, with the same output generated as MEGAN, which can be import into MEGAN in a direct way to finish the following analysis. Moreover, CloudLCA is a universal solution for finding the lowest common ancestor, and it can be applied in other fields requiring an LCA algorithm.

  6. The evolution of air resonance power efficiency in the violin and its ancestors

    PubMed Central

    Nia, Hadi T.; Jain, Ankita D.; Liu, Yuming; Alam, Mohammad-Reza; Barnas, Roman; Makris, Nicholas C.

    2015-01-01

    The fact that acoustic radiation from a violin at air-cavity resonance is monopolar and can be determined by pure volume change is used to help explain related aspects of violin design evolution. By determining the acoustic conductance of arbitrarily shaped sound holes, it is found that air flow at the perimeter rather than the broader sound-hole area dominates acoustic conductance, and coupling between compressible air within the violin and its elastic structure lowers the Helmholtz resonance frequency from that found for a corresponding rigid instrument by roughly a semitone. As a result of the former, it is found that as sound-hole geometry of the violin's ancestors slowly evolved over centuries from simple circles to complex f-holes, the ratio of inefficient, acoustically inactive to total sound-hole area was decimated, roughly doubling air-resonance power efficiency. F-hole length then slowly increased by roughly 30% across two centuries in the renowned workshops of Amati, Stradivari and Guarneri, favouring instruments with higher air-resonance power, through a corresponding power increase of roughly 60%. By evolution-rate analysis, these changes are found to be consistent with mutations arising within the range of accidental replication fluctuations from craftsmanship limitations with subsequent selection favouring instruments with higher air-resonance power. PMID:25792964

  7. Tracing ancestor rice of Suriname Maroons back to its African origin.

    PubMed

    van Andel, Tinde R; Meyer, Rachel S; Aflitos, Saulo A; Carney, Judith A; Veltman, Margaretha A; Copetti, Dario; Flowers, Jonathan M; Havinga, Reinout M; Maat, Harro; Purugganan, Michael D; Wing, Rod A; Schranz, M Eric

    2016-10-03

    African rice (Oryza glaberrima) and African cultivation practices are said to have influenced emerging colonial plantation economies in the Americas(1,2). However, the level of impact of African rice practices is difficult to establish because of limited written or botanical records(2,3). Recent findings of O. glaberrima in rice fields of Suriname Maroons bear evidence of the high level of knowledge about rice among African slaves and their descendants, who consecrate it in ancestor rituals(4,5). Here we establish the strong similarity, and hence likely origin, of the first extant New World landrace of O. glaberrima to landraces from the Upper Guinean forests in West Africa. We collected African rice from a Maroon market in Paramaribo, Suriname, propagated it, sequenced its genome(6) and compared it with genomes of 109 accessions representing O. glaberrima diversity across West Africa. By analysing 1,649,769 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in clustering analyses, the Suriname sample appears sister to an Ivory Coast landrace, and shows no evidence of introgression from Asian rice. Whereas the Dutch took most slaves from Ghana, Benin and Central Africa(7), the diaries of slave ship captains record the purchase of food for provisions when sailing along the West African Coast(8), offering one possible explanation for the patterns of genetic similarity. This study demonstrates the utility of genomics in understanding the largely unwritten histories of crop cultures of diaspora communities.

  8. Convergent evolution of Hawaiian and Australo-Pacific honeyeaters from distant songbird ancestors.

    PubMed

    Fleischer, Robert C; James, Helen F; Olson, Storrs L

    2008-12-23

    The Hawaiian "honeyeaters," five endemic species of recently extinct, nectar-feeding songbirds in the genera Moho and Chaetoptila, looked and acted like Australasian honeyeaters (Meliphagidae), and no taxonomist since their discovery on James Cook's third voyage has classified them as anything else. We obtained DNA sequences from museum specimens of Moho and Chaetoptila collected in Hawaii 115-158 years ago. Phylogenetic analysis of these sequences supports monophyly of the two Hawaiian genera but, surprisingly, reveals that neither taxon is a meliphagid honeyeater, nor even in the same part of the songbird radiation as meliphagids. Instead, the Hawaiian species are divergent members of a passeridan group that includes deceptively dissimilar families of songbirds (Holarctic waxwings, neotropical silky flycatchers, and palm chats). Here we designate them as a new family, the Mohoidae. A nuclear-DNA rate calibration suggests that mohoids diverged from their closest living ancestor 14-17 mya, coincident with the estimated earliest arrival in Hawaii of a bird-pollinated plant lineage. Convergent evolution, the evolution of similar traits in distantly related taxa because of common selective pressures, is illustrated well by nectar-feeding birds, but the morphological, behavioral, and ecological similarity of the mohoids to the Australasian honeyeaters makes them a particularly striking example of the phenomenon.

  9. An early modern human from Romania with a recent Neanderthal ancestor.

    PubMed

    Fu, Qiaomei; Hajdinjak, Mateja; Moldovan, Oana Teodora; Constantin, Silviu; Mallick, Swapan; Skoglund, Pontus; Patterson, Nick; Rohland, Nadin; Lazaridis, Iosif; Nickel, Birgit; Viola, Bence; Prüfer, Kay; Meyer, Matthias; Kelso, Janet; Reich, David; Pääbo, Svante

    2015-08-13

    Neanderthals are thought to have disappeared in Europe approximately 39,000-41,000 years ago but they have contributed 1-3% of the DNA of present-day people in Eurasia. Here we analyse DNA from a 37,000-42,000-year-old modern human from Peştera cu Oase, Romania. Although the specimen contains small amounts of human DNA, we use an enrichment strategy to isolate sites that are informative about its relationship to Neanderthals and present-day humans. We find that on the order of 6-9% of the genome of the Oase individual is derived from Neanderthals, more than any other modern human sequenced to date. Three chromosomal segments of Neanderthal ancestry are over 50 centimorgans in size, indicating that this individual had a Neanderthal ancestor as recently as four to six generations back. However, the Oase individual does not share more alleles with later Europeans than with East Asians, suggesting that the Oase population did not contribute substantially to later humans in Europe.

  10. Progress Towards Mammalian Whole-Brain Cellular Connectomics

    PubMed Central

    Mikula, Shawn

    2016-01-01

    Neurons are the fundamental structural units of the nervous system—i.e., the Neuron Doctrine—as the pioneering work of Santiago Ramón y Cajal in the 1880’s clearly demonstrated through careful observation of Golgi-stained neuronal morphologies. However, at that time sample preparation, imaging methods and computational tools were either nonexistent or insufficiently developed to permit the precise mapping of an entire brain with all of its neurons and their connections. Some measure of the “mesoscopic” connectional organization of the mammalian brain has been obtained over the past decade by alignment of sparse subsets of labeled neurons onto a reference atlas or via MRI-based diffusion tensor imaging. Neither method, however, provides data on the complete connectivity of all neurons comprising an individual brain. Fortunately, whole-brain cellular connectomics now appears within reach due to recent advances in whole-brain sample preparation and high-throughput electron microscopy (EM), though substantial obstacles remain with respect to large volume electron microscopic acquisitions and automated neurite reconstructions. This perspective examines the current status and problems associated with generating a mammalian whole-brain cellular connectome and argues that the time is right to launch a concerted connectomic attack on a small mammalian whole-brain. PMID:27445704

  11. Micro-optical coherence tomography of the mammalian cochlea

    PubMed Central

    Iyer, Janani S.; Batts, Shelley A.; Chu, Kengyeh K.; Sahin, Mehmet I.; Leung, Hui Min; Tearney, Guillermo J.; Stankovic, Konstantina M.

    2016-01-01

    The mammalian cochlea has historically resisted attempts at high-resolution, non-invasive imaging due to its small size, complex three-dimensional structure, and embedded location within the temporal bone. As a result, little is known about the relationship between an individual’s cochlear pathology and hearing function, and otologists must rely on physiological testing and imaging methods that offer limited resolution to obtain information about the inner ear prior to performing surgery. Micro-optical coherence tomography (μOCT) is a non-invasive, low-coherence interferometric imaging technique capable of resolving cellular-level anatomic structures. To determine whether μOCT is capable of resolving mammalian intracochlear anatomy, fixed guinea pig inner ears were imaged as whole temporal bones with cochlea in situ. Anatomical structures such as the tunnel of Corti, space of Nuel, modiolus, scalae, and cell groupings were visualized, in addition to individual cell types such as neuronal fibers, hair cells, and supporting cells. Visualization of these structures, via volumetrically-reconstructed image stacks and endoscopic perspective videos, represents an improvement over previous efforts using conventional OCT. These are the first μOCT images of mammalian cochlear anatomy, and they demonstrate μOCT’s potential utility as an imaging tool in otology research. PMID:27633610

  12. A Francisella-like endosymbiont in the Gulf Coast tick evolved from a mammalian pathogen

    PubMed Central

    Gerhart, Jonathan G.; Moses, Abraham S.; Raghavan, Rahul

    2016-01-01

    Ticks (order Ixodida) vector pathogenic bacteria that cause diseases in humans and other mammals. They also contain bacteria that are closely related to pathogens but function as endosymbionts that provide nutrients that are missing from mammalian blood—their sole food source. For instance, mammalian pathogens such as Coxiella burnetii and Francisella tularensis, as well as Coxiella-like and Francisella-like endosymbionts (CLEs and FLEs, respectively) occur in ticks worldwide. However, it is not clear whether the pathogens evolved from symbionts or symbionts from pathogens. Recent studies have indicated that C. burnetii likely originated from a tick-associated ancestor, but the origins of FLEs are not clear. In this study, we sequenced the genome of an FLE, termed FLE-Am, present in the Gulf Coast tick, Amblyomma maculatum. We show that FLE-Am likely evolved from a pathogenic strain of Francisella, indicating that tick endosymbionts can evolve from mammalian pathogens. Although the genome of FLE-Am is almost the same size as the genomes of pathogenic Francisella strains, about one-third of its protein-coding genes contain inactivating mutations. The relatively low coding capacity and extensive metabolic capabilities indicate that FLE-Am transitioned recently to its current endosymbiotic lifestyle and likely replaced an ancient endosymbiont with degraded functionality. PMID:27645766

  13. Functional characterization of mammalian Wntless homolog in mammalian system.

    PubMed

    Wang, Li-Ting; Wang, Shih-Jong; Hsu, Shih-Hsien

    2012-07-01

    Wntless (GPR177) protein is a newly identified regulator of Wnt signals in Drosophila, but its cellular function in mammals is still unclear. In this study, we explored the expression pattern and potential cellular function of Wntless in mammalian cells. Wntless mRNA was expressed in many mouse tissues, including the spleen, lung, kidney, thymus, and stomach, and lower levels of expression were detected in the mouse brain and testis. Expression of Wntless protein analyzed by Western blot and immunohistochemical staining was only detected in the submucosa, muscle, ganglia, and nerve cells of murine large intestines. Both immunofluorescence staining and subcellular fraction extraction analysis revealed that endogenous Wntless protein was expressed predominantly in the cytoplasmic organelles with a morphologically dot-shaped distribution. Furthermore, overexpression of Wntless could be corrected by and may activate the nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) signaling pathway in cancer (HeLa) cells. These results suggest that Wntless plays a role in signaling regulation during the formation of cancer in addition to its role as a retromer protein in mammalian systems.

  14. Isozymatic variation and phylogenetic relationships between henequen (Agave fourcroydes) and its wild ancestor A. angustifolia (Agavaceae).

    PubMed

    Colunga-Garcíamarín, P; Coello-Coello, J; Eguiarte, L E; Piñero, D

    1999-01-01

    Isozymatic variation and phylogenetic relationships among extant henequén (Agave fourcroydes) germplasm and wild populations of its ancestor A. angustifolia in the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico were analyzed. Analysis of three isozyme systems using starch gel electrophoresis indicated that while A. angustifolia populations have relatively high levels of variation, within each henequén cultivar all individuals were identical. This result corresponds to previous ethnobotanical and morphological analyses, which indicated severe loss of genetic variation of this domesticated plant as a consequence of the promotion by means of asexual propagation of only one cultivar since the middle of the last century. The three extant cultivars of henequén were distinct from each other. Two of them, Sac Ki (SK) and Yaax Ki (YK), could be matched within the progenitor, but Kitam Ki (KK) has a MDH electrophenotype not found in any of the plants growing inside the Yucatan Peninsula, but found in some A. angustifolia plants growing in the Mexican states of Oaxaca and Veracruz. A parsimony analysis of the morphological data indicated two lineages: that of SK and YK, cultivated cordage plants selected for stronger and longer fibers, whose sister group is the Tropical subdeciduous forest ecotype (SF), and that of all the other wild populations, which also included KK, the cultivated textile plants selected for finer fibers and nearly extinct in Yucatan. These results support the hypothesis of the yucatecan origin of SK and YK from the SF ecotype, as well as the hypothesis of a recent introduction of KK to the Yucatan Peninsula in a domestication trend that probably included also Chelem White (its cultivation being abandoned later).

  15. Specimen-level phylogenetics in paleontology using the Fossilized Birth-Death model with sampled ancestors

    PubMed Central

    2017-01-01

    Bayesian phylogenetic methods integrating simultaneously morphological and stratigraphic information have been applied increasingly among paleontologists. Most of these studies have used Bayesian methods as an alternative to the widely-used parsimony analysis, to infer macroevolutionary patterns and relationships among species-level or higher taxa. Among recently introduced Bayesian methodologies, the Fossilized Birth-Death (FBD) model allows incorporation of hypotheses on ancestor-descendant relationships in phylogenetic analyses including fossil taxa. Here, the FBD model is used to infer the relationships among an ingroup formed exclusively by fossil individuals, i.e., dipnoan tooth plates from four localities in the Ain el Guettar Formation of Tunisia. Previous analyses of this sample compared the results of phylogenetic analysis using parsimony with stratigraphic methods, inferred a high diversity (five or more genera) in the Ain el Guettar Formation, and interpreted it as an artifact inflated by depositional factors. In the analysis performed here, the uncertainty on the chronostratigraphic relationships among the specimens was included among the prior settings. The results of the analysis confirm the referral of most of the specimens to the taxa Asiatoceratodus, Equinoxiodus, Lavocatodus and Neoceratodus, but reject those to Ceratodus and Ferganoceratodus. The resulting phylogeny constrained the evolution of the Tunisian sample exclusively in the Early Cretaceous, contrasting with the previous scenario inferred by the stratigraphically-calibrated topology resulting from parsimony analysis. The phylogenetic framework also suggests that (1) the sampled localities are laterally equivalent, (2) but three localities are restricted to the youngest part of the section; both results are in agreement with previous stratigraphic analyses of these localities. The FBD model of specimen-level units provides a novel tool for phylogenetic inference among fossils but also

  16. Specimen-level phylogenetics in paleontology using the Fossilized Birth-Death model with sampled ancestors.

    PubMed

    Cau, Andrea

    2017-01-01

    Bayesian phylogenetic methods integrating simultaneously morphological and stratigraphic information have been applied increasingly among paleontologists. Most of these studies have used Bayesian methods as an alternative to the widely-used parsimony analysis, to infer macroevolutionary patterns and relationships among species-level or higher taxa. Among recently introduced Bayesian methodologies, the Fossilized Birth-Death (FBD) model allows incorporation of hypotheses on ancestor-descendant relationships in phylogenetic analyses including fossil taxa. Here, the FBD model is used to infer the relationships among an ingroup formed exclusively by fossil individuals, i.e., dipnoan tooth plates from four localities in the Ain el Guettar Formation of Tunisia. Previous analyses of this sample compared the results of phylogenetic analysis using parsimony with stratigraphic methods, inferred a high diversity (five or more genera) in the Ain el Guettar Formation, and interpreted it as an artifact inflated by depositional factors. In the analysis performed here, the uncertainty on the chronostratigraphic relationships among the specimens was included among the prior settings. The results of the analysis confirm the referral of most of the specimens to the taxa Asiatoceratodus, Equinoxiodus, Lavocatodus and Neoceratodus, but reject those to Ceratodus and Ferganoceratodus. The resulting phylogeny constrained the evolution of the Tunisian sample exclusively in the Early Cretaceous, contrasting with the previous scenario inferred by the stratigraphically-calibrated topology resulting from parsimony analysis. The phylogenetic framework also suggests that (1) the sampled localities are laterally equivalent, (2) but three localities are restricted to the youngest part of the section; both results are in agreement with previous stratigraphic analyses of these localities. The FBD model of specimen-level units provides a novel tool for phylogenetic inference among fossils but also

  17. Molecular Epidemiology of Helicobacter pylori Infection in Nepal: Specific Ancestor Root

    PubMed Central

    Miftahussurur, Muhammad; Sharma, Rabi Prakash; Shrestha, Pradeep Krishna; Suzuki, Rumiko; Uchida, Tomohisa; Yamaoka, Yoshio

    2015-01-01

    Prevalence of Helicobacter pylori infection in Nepal, a low-risk country for gastric cancer, is debatable. To our knowledge, no studies have examined H. pylori virulence factors in Nepal. We determined the prevalence of H. pylori infection by using three different tests, and the genotypes of virulence factors were determined by PCR followed by sequencing. Multilocus sequence typing was used to analyze the population structure of the Nepalese strains. The prevalence of H. pylori infection in dyspeptic patients was 38.4% (56/146), and was significantly related with source of drinking water. In total, 51 strains were isolated and all were cagA-positive. Western-type-cagA (94.1%), cagA pre-EPIYA type with no deletion (92.2%), vacA s1a (74.5%), and m1c (54.9%) were the predominant genotypes. Antral mucosal atrophy levels were significantly higher in patients infected with vacA s1 than in those infected with s2 genotypes (P = 0.03). Several Nepalese strains were H. pylori recombinants with genetic features of South Asian and East Asian genotypes. These included all East-Asian-type-cagA strains, with significantly lesser activity and inflammation in the corpus than the strains of the specific South Asian genotype (P = 0.03 and P = 0.005, respectively). Although the population structure confirmed that most Nepalese strains belonged to the hpAsia2 population, some strains shared hpEurope- and Nepalese-specific components. Nepalese patients infected with strains belonging to hpEurope showed higher inflammation in the antrum than strains from the Nepalese specific population (P = 0.05). These results support that ancestor roots of Kathmandu`s people not only connected with India alone. PMID:26226153

  18. Evolutionary origins of Hsp90 chaperones and a deep paralogy in their bacterial ancestors.

    PubMed

    Stechmann, Alexandra; Cavalier-Smith, Thomas

    2004-01-01

    The 82-90 kD family of molecular chaperone proteins has homologs in eukaryotes (Hsp90) and many eubacteria (HtpG) but not in Archaebacteria. We used representatives of all four different eukaryotic paralogs (cytosolic, endoplasmic reticulum (ER), chloroplast, mitochondrial) together with numerous eubacterial HtpG proteins for phylogenetic analyses to investigate their evolutionary origins. Our trees confirm that none of the organellar Hsp90s derives from the endosymbionts of early eukaryotes. Contrary to previous suggestions of distant origins through lateral gene transfer (LGT) all eukaryote Hsp90s are related to Gram-positive eubacterial HtpG proteins. The nucleocytosolic, ER and chloroplast Hsp90 paralogs are clearly mutually related. The origin of mitochondrial Hsp90 is more obscure, as these sequences are deeply nested within eubacteria. Our trees also reveal a deep split within eubacteria into a group of mainly long-branching sequences (including the eukaryote mitochondrial Hsp90s) and another group comprising exclusively short-branching HtpG proteins, from which the cytosolic/ER versions probably arose. Both versions are present in several eubacterial phyla, suggesting gene duplication very early in eubacterial evolution and multiple independent losses thereafter. We identified one probable case of LGT within eubacteria. However, multiple losses can simply explain the evolutionary pattern of the eubacterial HtpG paralogs and predominate over LGT. We suggest that the actinobacterial ancestor of eukaryotes harbored genes for both eubacterial HtpG paralogs, as the actinobacterium Streptomyces coelicolor still does; one could have given rise to the mitochondrial Hsp90 and the other, following another duplication event in the ancestral eukaryote, to the cytosolic and ER Hsp90 homologs.

  19. Buds of the tree: the highway to the last universal common ancestor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Farias, Savio Torres; Prosdocimi, Francisco

    2017-04-01

    The last universal common ancestor (LUCA) has been considered as the branching point on which Bacteria, Archaea and Eukaryotes have diverged. However, the increased information relating to viruses' genomes and the perception that many virus genes do not have homologs in other organisms opened a new discussion. Based on these facts, there has emerged the idea of an early LUCA that should be moved further into the past to include viruses, implicating that life should have originated before the appearance of cellular life forms. Another point of view from advocates of the RNA-world suggests that the origin of life happened a long time before organisms were capable of organizing themselves into cellular entities. Relevant data about the origin of ribosomes indicate that the catalytic unit of the large ribosomal subunit is what should actually be considered as the turning point that separated chemistry from biology. Other researchers seem to think that a tRNA was probably some sort of a strange attractor on which life has originated. Here we propose a theoretical synthesis that tries to provide a crosstalk among the theories and define important points on which the origin of life could have been originated and made more complex, taking into account gradualist assumptions. Thus, discussions involving the origin of biological activities in the RNA-world might lead into a world of progenotes on which viruses have been taken part until the appearance of the very first cells. Along this route of complexification, we identified some key points on which researchers may consider life as an emerging principle.

  20. Evolution of DNA polymerases: an inactivated polymerase-exonuclease module in Pol ε and a chimeric origin of eukaryotic polymerases from two classes of archaeal ancestors

    PubMed Central

    Tahirov, Tahir H; Makarova, Kira S; Rogozin, Igor B; Pavlov, Youri I; Koonin, Eugene V

    2009-01-01

    Background Evolution of DNA polymerases, the key enzymes of DNA replication and repair, is central to any reconstruction of the history of cellular life. However, the details of the evolutionary relationships between DNA polymerases of archaea and eukaryotes remain unresolved. Results We performed a comparative analysis of archaeal, eukaryotic, and bacterial B-family DNA polymerases, which are the main replicative polymerases in archaea and eukaryotes, combined with an analysis of domain architectures. Surprisingly, we found that eukaryotic Polymerase ε consists of two tandem exonuclease-polymerase modules, the active N-terminal module and a C-terminal module in which both enzymatic domains are inactivated. The two modules are only distantly related to each other, an observation that suggests the possibility that Pol ε evolved as a result of insertion and subsequent inactivation of a distinct polymerase, possibly, of bacterial descent, upstream of the C-terminal Zn-fingers, rather than by tandem duplication. The presence of an inactivated exonuclease-polymerase module in Pol ε parallels a similar inactivation of both enzymatic domains in a distinct family of archaeal B-family polymerases. The results of phylogenetic analysis indicate that eukaryotic B-family polymerases, most likely, originate from two distantly related archaeal B-family polymerases, one form giving rise to Pol ε, and the other one to the common ancestor of Pol α, Pol δ, and Pol ζ. The C-terminal Zn-fingers that are present in all eukaryotic B-family polymerases, unexpectedly, are homologous to the Zn-finger of archaeal D-family DNA polymerases that are otherwise unrelated to the B family. The Zn-finger of Polε shows a markedly greater similarity to the counterpart in archaeal PolD than the Zn-fingers of other eukaryotic B-family polymerases. Conclusion Evolution of eukaryotic DNA polymerases seems to have involved previously unnoticed complex events. We hypothesize that the archaeal

  1. Ceramide signaling in mammalian epidermis.

    PubMed

    Uchida, Yoshikazu

    2014-03-01

    Ceramide, the backbone structure of all sphingolipids, as well as a minor component of cellular membranes, has a unique role in the skin, by forming the epidermal permeability barrier at the extracellular domains of the outermost layer of the skin, the stratum corneum, which is required for terrestrial mammalian survival. In contrast to the role of ceramide in forming the permeability barrier, the signaling roles of ceramide and its metabolites have not yet been recognized. Ceramide and/or its metabolites regulate proliferation, differentiation, and apoptosis in epidermal keratinocytes. Recent studies have further demonstrated that a ceramide metabolite, sphingosine-1-phosphate, modulates innate immune function. Ceramide has already been applied to therapeutic approaches for treatment of eczema associated with attenuated epidermal permeability barrier function. Pharmacological modulation of ceramide and its metabolites' signaling can also be applied to cutaneous disease prevention and therapy. The author here describes the signaling roles of ceramide and its metabolites in mammalian cells and tissues, including the epidermis. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled The Important Role of Lipids in the Epidermis and their Role in the Formation and Maintenance of the Cutaneous Barrier. Guest Editors: Kenneth R. Feingold and Peter Elias.

  2. The origin of life and the last universal common ancestor: do we need a change of perspective?

    PubMed

    Glansdorff, Nicolas; Xu, Ying; Labedan, Bernard

    2009-09-01

    A complete tree with roots, trunk and crown remains an appropriate model to represent all steps of life's development, from the emergence of a unique genetic code up to the last universal common ancestor and its further radiation. Catalytic closure of a mixture of prebiotic polymers is a heuristic alternative to the RNA world. Conjectures about emergence of life in an infinite multiverse should not confuse probability with possibility.

  3. The Effect of Recombination on the Reconstruction of Ancestral Sequences

    PubMed Central

    Arenas, Miguel; Posada, David

    2010-01-01

    While a variety of methods exist to reconstruct ancestral sequences, all of them assume that a single phylogeny underlies all the positions in the alignment and therefore that recombination has not taken place. Using computer simulations we show that recombination can severely bias ancestral sequence reconstruction (ASR), and quantify this effect. If recombination is ignored, the ancestral sequences recovered can be quite distinct from the grand most recent common ancestor (GMRCA) of the sample and better resemble the concatenate of partial most recent common ancestors (MRCAs) at each recombination fragment. When independent phylogenetic trees are assumed for the different recombinant segments, the estimation of the fragment MRCAs improves significantly. Importantly, we show that recombination can change the biological predictions derived from ASRs carried out with real data. Given that recombination is widespread on nuclear genes and in particular in RNA viruses and some bacteria, the reconstruction of ancestral sequences in these cases should consider the potential impact of recombination and ideally be carried out using approaches that accommodate recombination. PMID:20124027

  4. Dynamic Ising model: reconstruction of evolutionary trees

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Oliveira, P. M. C.

    2013-09-01

    An evolutionary tree is a cascade of bifurcations starting from a single common root, generating a growing set of daughter species as time goes by. ‘Species’ here is a general denomination for biological species, spoken languages or any other entity which evolves through heredity. From the N currently alive species within a clade, distances are measured through pairwise comparisons made by geneticists, linguists, etc. The larger is such a distance that, for a pair of species, the older is their last common ancestor. The aim is to reconstruct the previously unknown bifurcations, i.e. the whole clade, from knowledge of the N(N - 1)/2 quoted distances, which are taken for granted. A mechanical method is presented and its applicability is discussed.

  5. Genome sequence of the brown Norway rat yields insights into mammalian evolution

    SciTech Connect

    Gibbs, Richard A.; Weinstock, George M.; Metzker, Michael L.; Muzny, Donna M.; Sodergren, Erica J.; Scherer, Steven; Scott, Graham; Steffen, David; Worley, Kim C.; Burch, Paula E.; Okwuonu, Geoffrey; Hines, Sandra; Lewis, Lora; DeRamo, Christine; Delgado, Oliver; Dugan-Rocha, Shannon; Miner, George; Morgan, Margaret; Hawes, Alicia; Gill, Rachel; Holt, Robert A.; Adams, Mark D.; Amanatides, Peter G.; Baden-Tillson, Holly; Barnstead, Mary; Chin, Soo; Evans, Cheryl A.; Ferriera, Steven; Fosler, Carl; Glodek, Anna; Gu, Zhiping; Jennings, Don; Kraft, Cheryl L.; Nguyen, Trixie; Pfannkoch, Cynthia M.; Sitter, Cynthia; Sutton, Granger G.; Venter, J. Craig; Woodage, Trevor; Smith, Douglas; Lee, Hong-Maei; Gustafson, Erik; Cahill, Patrick; Kana, Arnold; Doucette-Stamm, Lynn; Weinstock, Keith; Fechtel, Kim; Weiss, Robert B.; Dunn, Diane M.; Green, Eric D.; Blakesley, Robert W.; Bouffard, Gerard G.; de Jong, Pieter J.; Osoegawa, Kazutoyo; Zhu, Baoli; Marra, Marco; Schein, Jacqueline; Bosdet, Ian; Fjell, Chris; Jones, Steven; Krzywinski, Martin; Mathewson, Carrie; Siddiqui, Asim; Wye, Natasja; McPherson, John; Zhao, Shaying; Fraser, Claire M.; Shetty, Jyoti; Shatsman, Sofiya; Geer, Keita; Chen, Yixin; Abramzon, Sofyia; Nierman, William C.; Havlak, Paul H.; Chen, Rui; Durbin, K. James; Egan, Amy; Ren, Yanru; Song, Xing-Zhi; Li, Bingshan; Liu, Yue; Qin, Xiang; Cawley, Simon; Cooney, A.J.; D'Souza, Lisa M.; Martin, Kirt; Wu, Jia Qian; Gonzalez-Garay, Manuel L.; Jackson, Andrew R.; Kalafus, Kenneth J.; McLeod, Michael P.; Milosavljevic, Aleksandar; Virk, Davinder; Volkov, Andrei; Wheeler, David A.; Zhang, Zhengdong; Bailey, Jeffrey A.; Eichler, Evan E.; Tuzun, Eray; Birney, Ewan; Mongin, Emmanuel; Ureta-Vidal, Abel; Woodwark, Cara; Zdobnov, Evgeny; Bork, Peer; Suyama, Mikita; Torrents, David; Alexandersson, Marina; Trask, Barbara J.; Young, Janet M.; et al.

    2004-02-02

    The laboratory rat (Rattus norvegicus) is an indispensable tool in experimental medicine and drug development, having made inestimable contributions to human health. We report here the genome sequence of the Brown Norway (BN) rat strain. The sequence represents a high-quality 'draft' covering over 90 percent of the genome. The BN rat sequence is the third complete mammalian genome to be deciphered, and three-way comparisons with the human and mouse genomes resolve details of mammalian evolution. This first comprehensive analysis includes genes and proteins and their relation to human disease, repeated sequences, comparative genome-wide studies of mammalian orthologous chromosomal regions and rearrangement breakpoints, reconstruction of ancestral karyotypes and the events leading to existing species, rates of variation, and lineage-specific and lineage-independent evolutionary events such as expansion of gene families, orthology relations and protein evolution.

  6. mGRASP enables mapping mammalian synaptic connectivity with light microscopy

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Jinhyun; Zhao, Ting; Petralia, Ronald S; Yu, Yang; Peng, Hanchuan; Myers, Eugene; Magee, Jeffrey C

    2012-01-01

    The GFP reconstitution across synaptic partners (GRASP) technique, based on functional complementation between two nonfluorescent GFP fragments, can be used to detect the location of synapses quickly, accurately and with high spatial resolution. The method has been previously applied in the nematode and the fruit fly but requires substantial modification for use in the mammalian brain. We developed mammalian GRASP (mGRASP) by optimizing transmembrane split-GFP carriers for mammalian synapses. Using in silico protein design, we engineered chimeric synaptic mGRASP fragments that were efficiently delivered to synaptic locations and reconstituted GFP fluorescence in vivo. Furthermore, by integrating molecular and cellular approaches with a computational strategy for the three-dimensional reconstruction of neurons, we applied mGRASP to both long-range circuits and local microcircuits in the mouse hippocampus and thalamocortical regions, analyzing synaptic distribution in single neurons and in dendritic compartments. PMID:22138823

  7. Producing Newborn Synchronous Mammalian Cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gonda, Steve R.; Helmstetter, Charles E.; Thornton, Maureen

    2008-01-01

    A method and bioreactor for the continuous production of synchronous (same age) population of mammalian cells have been invented. The invention involves the attachment and growth of cells on an adhesive-coated porous membrane immersed in a perfused liquid culture medium in a microgravity analog bioreactor. When cells attach to the surface divide, newborn cells are released into the flowing culture medium. The released cells, consisting of a uniform population of synchronous cells are then collected from the effluent culture medium. This invention could be of interest to researchers investigating the effects of the geneotoxic effects of the space environment (microgravity, radiation, chemicals, gases) and to pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies involved in research on aging and cancer, and in new drug development and testing.

  8. Body Size in Mammalian Paleobiology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Damuth, John; MacFadden, Bruce J.

    1990-11-01

    This valuable collection of essays presents and evaluates techniques of body-mass estimation and reviews current and potential applications of body-size estimates in paleobiology. Papers discuss explicitly the errors and biases of various regression techniques and predictor variables, and the identification of functionally similar groups of species for improving the accuracy of estimates. At the same time other chapters review and discuss the physiological, ecological, and behavioral correlates of body size in extant mammals; the significance of body-mass distributions in mammalian faunas; and the ecology and evolution of body size in particular paleofaunas. Coverage is particularly detailed for carnivores, primates, and ungulates, but information is also presented on marsupials, rodents, and proboscideans.

  9. Mammalian glutaminase isozymes in brain.

    PubMed

    Márquez, Javier; Cardona, Carolina; Campos-Sandoval, José A; Peñalver, Ana; Tosina, Marta; Matés, José M; Martín-Rufián, Mercedes

    2013-06-01

    Glutamine/glutamate homeostasis must be exquisitely regulated in mammalian brain and glutaminase (GA, E.C. 3.5.1.2) is one of the main enzymes involved. The products of GA reaction, glutamate and ammonia, are essential metabolites for energy and biosynthetic purposes but they are also hazardous compounds at concentrations beyond their normal physiological thresholds. The classical pattern of GA expression in mammals has been recently challenged by the discovery of novel transcript variants and protein isoforms. Furthermore, the interactome of brain GA is also starting to be uncovered adding a new level of regulatory complexity. GA may traffic in brain and unexpected locations, like cytosol and nucleus, have been found for GA isoforms. Finally, the expression of GA in glial cells has been reported and its potential implications in ammonia homeostasis are discussed.

  10. Pharmacology of mammalian olfactory receptors.

    PubMed

    Smith, Richard S; Peterlin, Zita; Araneda, Ricardo C

    2013-01-01

    Mammalian species have evolved a large and diverse number of odorant receptors (ORs). These proteins comprise the largest family of G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) known, amounting to ~1,000-different receptors in the rodent. From the perspective of olfactory coding, the availability of such a vast number of chemosensory receptors poses several fascinating questions; in addition, such a large repertoire provides an attractive biological model to study ligand-receptor interactions. The limited functional expression of these receptors in heterologous systems, however, has greatly hampered attempts to deorphanize them. We have employed a successful approach that combines electrophysiological and imaging techniques to analyze the response profiles of single sensory neurons. Our approach has enabled us to characterize the "odor space" of a population of native aldehyde receptors and the molecular range of a genetically engineered receptor, OR-I7.

  11. Interaction theory of mammalian mitochondria.

    PubMed

    Nakada, K; Inoue, K; Hayashi, J

    2001-11-09

    We generated mice with deletion mutant mtDNA by its introduction from somatic cells into mouse zygotes. Expressions of disease phenotypes are limited to tissues expressing mitochondrial dysfunction. Considering that all these mice share the same nuclear background, these observations suggest that accumulation of the mutant mtDNA and resultant expressions of mitochondrial dysfunction are responsible for expression of disease phenotypes. On the other hand, mitochondrial dysfunction and expression of clinical abnormalities were not observed until the mutant mtDNA accumulated predominantly. This protection is due to the presence of extensive and continuous interaction between exogenous mitochondria from cybrids and recipient mitochondria from embryos. Thus, we would like to propose a new hypothesis on mitochondrial biogenesis, interaction theory of mitochondria: mammalian mitochondria exchange genetic contents, and thus lost the individuality and function as a single dynamic cellular unit.

  12. Determinants of Mammalian Nucleolar Architecture

    PubMed Central

    Farley, Katherine I.; Surovtseva, Yulia; Merkel, Janie; Baserga, Susan J.

    2015-01-01

    The nucleolus is responsible for the production of ribosomes, essential machines which synthesize all proteins needed by the cell. The structure of human nucleoli is highly dynamic and is directly related to its functions in ribosome biogenesis. Despite the importance of this organelle, the intricate relationship between nucleolar structure and function remains largely unexplored. How do cells control nucleolar formation and function? What are the minimal requirements for making a functional nucleolus? Here we review what is currently known regarding mammalian nucleolar formation at nucleolar organizer regions (NORs), which can be studied by observing the dissolution and reformation of the nucleolus during each cell division. Additionally, the nucleolus can be examined by analyzing how alterations in nucleolar function manifest in differences in nucleolar architecture. Furthermore, changes in nucleolar structure and function are correlated with cancer, highlighting the importance of studying the determinants of nucleolar formation. PMID:25670395

  13. Genomic and Proteomic Analyses Indicate that Banchine and Campoplegine Polydnaviruses Have Similar, if Not Identical, Viral Ancestors

    PubMed Central

    Béliveau, Catherine; Cohen, Alejandro; Stewart, Don; Periquet, Georges; Djoumad, Abdelmadjid; Kuhn, Lisa; Stoltz, Don; Boyle, Brian; Volkoff, Anne-Nathalie; Herniou, Elisabeth A.; Drezen, Jean-Michel

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Polydnaviruses form a group of unconventional double-stranded DNA (dsDNA) viruses transmitted by endoparasitic wasps during egg laying into caterpillar hosts, where viral gene expression is essential to immature wasp survival. A copy of the viral genome is present in wasp chromosomes, thus ensuring vertical transmission. Polydnaviruses comprise two taxa, Bracovirus and Ichnovirus, shown to have distinct viral ancestors whose genomes were “captured” by ancestral wasps. While evidence indicates that bracoviruses derive from a nudivirus ancestor, the identity of the ichnovirus progenitor remains unknown. In addition, ichnoviruses are found in two ichneumonid wasp subfamilies, Campopleginae and Banchinae, where they constitute morphologically and genomically different virus types. To address the question of whether these two ichnovirus subgroups have distinct ancestors, we used genomic, proteomic, and transcriptomic analyses to characterize particle proteins of the banchine Glypta fumiferanae ichnovirus and the genes encoding them. Several proteins were found to be homologous to those identified earlier for campoplegine ichnoviruses while the corresponding genes were located in clusters of the wasp genome similar to those observed previously in a campoplegine wasp. However, for the first time in a polydnavirus system, these clusters also revealed sequences encoding enzymes presumed to form the replicative machinery of the progenitor virus and observed to be overexpressed in the virogenic tissue. Homology searches pointed to nucleocytoplasmic large DNA viruses as the likely source of these genes. These data, along with an analysis of the chromosomal form of five viral genome segments, provide clear evidence for the relatedness of the banchine and campoplegine ichnovirus ancestors. IMPORTANCE Recent work indicates that the two recognized polydnavirus taxa, Bracovirus and Ichnovirus, are derived from distinct viruses whose genomes integrated into the genomes

  14. Genome regulation in mammalian cells.

    PubMed

    Puck, T T; Krystosek, A; Chan, D C

    1990-05-01

    A theory is presented proposing that genetic regulation in mammalian cells is at least a two-tiered effect; that one level of regulation involves the transition between gene exposure and sequestration; that normal differentiation requires a different spectrum of genes to be exposed in each separate state of differentiation; that the fiber systems of the cell cytoskeleton and the nuclear matrix together control the degree of gene exposure; that specific phosphorylation of these elements causes them to assume a different organizational network and to impose a different pattern of sequestration and exposure on the elements of the genome; that the varied gene phosphorylation mechanisms in the cell are integrated in this function; that attachment of this network system to specific parts of the chromosomes brings about sequestration or exposure of the genes in their neighborhood in a fashion similar to that observed when microtubule elements attach through the kinetochore to the centromeric DNA; that one function of repetitive sequences is to serve as elements for the final attachment of this fibrous network to the specific chromosomal loci; and that at least an important part of the calcium manifestation as a metabolic trigger of different differentiation states involves its acting as a binding agent to centers of electronegativity, in particular proteins and especially phosphorylated groups, so as to change the conformation of the fiber network that ultimately controls gene exposure in the mammalian cell. It would appear essential to determine what abnormal gene exposures and sequestrations are characteristic of each type of cancer; which agonists, if any, will bring about reverse transformation; and whether these considerations can be used in therapy.

  15. The mammalian Cretaceous cochlear revolution.

    PubMed

    Manley, Geoffrey A

    2016-12-19

    The hearing organs of amniote vertebrates show large differences in their size and structure between the species' groups. In spite of this, their performance in terms of hearing sensitivity and the frequency selectivity of auditory-nerve units shows unexpectedly small differences. The only substantial difference is that therian, defined as live-bearing, mammalian groups are able to hear ultrasonic frequencies (above 15-20 kHz), whereas in contrast monotreme (egg laying) mammals and all non-mammalian amniotes cannot. This review compares the structure and physiology of the cochleae of the main groups and asks the question as to why the many structural differences seen in therian mammals arose, yet did not result in greater differences in physiology. The likely answers to this question are found in the history of the mammals during the Cretaceous period that ended 65 million years ago. During that period, the therian cochlea lost its lagenar macula, leading to a fall in endolymph calcium levels. This likely resulted in a small revolution and an auditory crisis that was compensated for by a subsequent series of structural and physiological adaptations. The end result was a system of equivalent performance to that independently evolved in other amniotes but with the additional - and of course "unforeseen" - advantage that ultrasonic-frequency responses became an available option. That option was not always availed of, but in most groups of therian mammals it did evolve and is used for communication and orientation based on improved sound localization, with micro-bats and toothed whales relying on it for prey capture.

  16. Mammalian biodiversity on Madagascar controlled by ocean currents.

    PubMed

    Ali, Jason R; Huber, Matthew

    2010-02-04

    Madagascar hosts one of the world's most unusual, endemic, diverse and threatened concentrations of fauna. To explain its unique, imbalanced biological diversity, G. G. Simpson proposed the 'sweepstakes hypothesis', according to which the ancestors of Madagascar's present-day mammal stock rafted there from Africa. This is an important hypothesis in biogeography and evolutionary theory for how animals colonize new frontiers, but its validity is questioned. Studies suggest that currents were inconsistent with rafting to Madagascar and that land bridges provided the migrants' passage. Here we show that currents could have transported the animals to the island and highlight evidence inconsistent with the land-bridge hypothesis. Using palaeogeographic reconstructions and palaeo-oceanographic modelling, we find that strong surface currents flowed from northeast Mozambique and Tanzania eastward towards Madagascar during the Palaeogene period, exactly as required by the 'sweepstakes process'. Subsequently, Madagascar advanced north towards the equatorial gyre and the regional current system evolved into its modern configuration with flows westward from Madagascar to Africa. This may explain why no fully non-aquatic land mammals have colonized Madagascar since the arrival of the rodents and carnivorans during the early-Miocene epoch. One implication is that rafting may be the dominant means of overseas dispersal in the Cenozoic era when palaeocurrent directions are properly considered.

  17. The society of our "out of Africa" ancestors (I): The migrant warriors that colonized the world.

    PubMed

    Moreno, Eduardo

    2011-03-01

    The "out of Africa" hypothesis proposes that a small group of Homo sapiens left Africa 80,000 years ago, spreading the mitochondrial haplotype L3 throughout the Earth.1-10 Little effort has been made to try to reconstruct the society and culture of the tribe that left Africa to populate the rest of the world.1 Here, I find that hunter-gatherers that belong to mitochondrial haplotypes L0, L1 and L2 do not have a culture of ritualized fights. In contrast to this, almost all L3 derived hunter-gatherers have a more belligerent culture that includes ritualized fights such as wrestling, stick fights or headhunting expeditions. This appears to be independent of their environment because ritualized fights occur in all climates, from the tropics to the arctic. There is also a correlation between mitochondrial haplotypes and warfare propensity or the use of murder and suicide to resolve conflicts. The data implicate that the original human population outside Africa is descended from only two closely related sub-branches that practiced ritual fighting and had a higher propensity towards warfare and the use of murder for conflict resolution. This warfare culture may have given the out of Africa migrants a competitive advantage to colonize the world. But it could also have crucially influenced the subsequent history of The Earth. In the future, it would be interesting to see how we could further reconstruct the society and culture of the "Out of Africa Tribe."

  18. Photodynamic inactivation of mammalian viruses and bacteriophages.

    PubMed

    Costa, Liliana; Faustino, Maria Amparo F; Neves, Maria Graça P M S; Cunha, Angela; Almeida, Adelaide

    2012-07-01

    Photodynamic inactivation (PDI) has been used to inactivate microorganisms through the use of photosensitizers. The inactivation of mammalian viruses and bacteriophages by photosensitization has been applied with success since the first decades of the last century. Due to the fact that mammalian viruses are known to pose a threat to public health and that bacteriophages are frequently used as models of mammalian viruses, it is important to know and understand the mechanisms and photodynamic procedures involved in their photoinactivation. The aim of this review is to (i) summarize the main approaches developed until now for the photodynamic inactivation of bacteriophages and mammalian viruses and, (ii) discuss and compare the present state of the art of mammalian viruses PDI with phage photoinactivation, with special focus on the most relevant mechanisms, molecular targets and factors affecting the viral inactivation process.

  19. Recent advances in mammalian protein production

    PubMed Central

    Bandaranayake, Ashok D.; Almo, Steven C.

    2014-01-01

    Mammalian protein production platforms have had a profound impact in many areas of basic and applied research, and an increasing number of blockbuster drugs are recombinant mammalian proteins. With global sales of these drugs exceeding US$120 billion per year, both industry and academic research groups continue to develop cost effective methods for producing mammalian proteins to support preclinical and clinical evaluations of potential therapeutics. While a wide range of platforms have been successfully exploited for laboratory use, the bulk of recent biologics have been produced in mammalian cell lines due to the requirement for post translational modification and the biosynthetic complexity of the target proteins. In this review we highlight the range of mammalian expression platforms available for recombinant protein production, as well as advances in technologies for the rapid and efficient selection of highly productive clones. PMID:24316512

  20. Photodynamic Inactivation of Mammalian Viruses and Bacteriophages

    PubMed Central

    Costa, Liliana; Faustino, Maria Amparo F.; Neves, Maria Graça P. M. S.; Cunha, Ângela; Almeida, Adelaide

    2012-01-01

    Photodynamic inactivation (PDI) has been used to inactivate microorganisms through the use of photosensitizers. The inactivation of mammalian viruses and bacteriophages by photosensitization has been applied with success since the first decades of the last century. Due to the fact that mammalian viruses are known to pose a threat to public health and that bacteriophages are frequently used as models of mammalian viruses, it is important to know and understand the mechanisms and photodynamic procedures involved in their photoinactivation. The aim of this review is to (i) summarize the main approaches developed until now for the photodynamic inactivation of bacteriophages and mammalian viruses and, (ii) discuss and compare the present state of the art of mammalian viruses PDI with phage photoinactivation, with special focus on the most relevant mechanisms, molecular targets and factors affecting the viral inactivation process. PMID:22852040

  1. The society of our “out of Africa” ancestors (I)

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    The “out of Africa” hypothesis proposes that a small group of Homo sapiens left Africa 80,000 years ago, spreading the mitochondrial haplotype L3 throughout the Earth.1–10 Little effort has been made to try to reconstruct the society and culture of the tribe that left Africa to populate the rest of the world.1 Here, I find that hunter-gatherers that belong to mitochondrial haplotypes L0, L1 and L2 do not have a culture of ritualized fights. In contrast to this, almost all L3 derived hunter-gatherers have a more belligerent culture that includes ritualized fights such as wrestling, stick fights or headhunting expeditions. This appears to be independent of their environment because ritualized fights occur in all climates, from the tropics to the arctic. There is also a correlation between mitochondrial haplotypes and warfare propensity or the use of murder and suicide to resolve conflicts. The data implicate that the original human population outside Africa is descended from only two closely related sub-branches that practiced ritual fighting and had a higher propensity towards warfare and the use of murder for conflict resolution. This warfare culture may have given the out of Africa migrants a competitive advantage to colonize the world. But it could also have crucially influenced the subsequent history of The Earth. In the future, it would be interesting to see how we could further reconstruct the society and culture of the “Out of Africa Tribe.” PMID:21655430

  2. The TLC: a novel auditory nucleus of the mammalian brain.

    PubMed

    Saldaña, Enrique; Viñuela, Antonio; Marshall, Allen F; Fitzpatrick, Douglas C; Aparicio, M-Auxiliadora

    2007-11-28

    We have identified a novel nucleus of the mammalian brain and termed it the tectal longitudinal column (TLC). Basic histologic stains, tract-tracing techniques and three-dimensional reconstructions reveal that the rat TLC is a narrow, elongated structure spanning the midbrain tectum longitudinally. This paired nucleus is located close to the midline, immediately dorsal to the periaqueductal gray matter. It occupies what has traditionally been considered the most medial region of the deep superior colliculus and the most medial region of the inferior colliculus. The TLC differs from the neighboring nuclei of the superior and inferior colliculi and the periaqueductal gray by its distinct connections and cytoarchitecture. Extracellular electrophysiological recordings show that TLC neurons respond to auditory stimuli with physiologic properties that differ from those of neurons in the inferior or superior colliculi. We have identified the TLC in rodents, lagomorphs, carnivores, nonhuman primates, and humans, which indicates that the nucleus is conserved across mammals. The discovery of the TLC reveals an unexpected level of longitudinal organization in the mammalian tectum and raises questions as to the participation of this mesencephalic region in essential, yet completely unexplored, aspects of multisensory and/or sensorimotor integration.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

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

  4. Maize Domestication and Anti-Herbivore Defences: Leaf-Specific Dynamics during Early Ontogeny of Maize and Its Wild Ancestors

    PubMed Central

    Maag, Daniel; Erb, Matthias; Bernal, Julio S.; Wolfender, Jean-Luc; Turlings, Ted C. J.; Glauser, Gaétan

    2015-01-01

    As a consequence of artificial selection for specific traits, crop plants underwent considerable genotypic and phenotypic changes during the process of domestication. These changes may have led to reduced resistance in the cultivated plant due to shifts in resource allocation from defensive traits to increased growth rates and yield. Modern maize (Zea mays ssp. mays) was domesticated from its ancestor Balsas teosinte (Z. mays ssp. parviglumis) approximately 9000 years ago. Although maize displays a high genetic overlap with its direct ancestor and other annual teosintes, several studies show that maize and its ancestors differ in their resistance phenotypes with teosintes being less susceptible to herbivore damage. However, the underlying mechanisms are poorly understood. Here we addressed the question to what extent maize domestication has affected two crucial chemical and one physical defence traits and whether differences in their expression may explain the differences in herbivore resistance levels. The ontogenetic trajectories of 1,4-benzoxazin-3-ones, maysin and leaf toughness were monitored for different leaf types across several maize cultivars and teosinte accessions during early vegetative growth stages. We found significant quantitative and qualitative differences in 1,4-benzoxazin-3-one accumulation in an initial pairwise comparison, but we did not find consistent differences between wild and cultivated genotypes during a more thorough examination employing several cultivars/accessions. Yet, 1,4-benzoxazin-3-one levels tended to decline more rapidly with plant age in the modern maize cultivars. Foliar maysin levels and leaf toughness increased with plant age in a leaf-specific manner, but were also unaffected by domestication. Based on our findings we suggest that defence traits other than the ones that were investigated are responsible for the observed differences in herbivore resistance between teosinte and maize. Furthermore, our results indicate

  5. Technology of mammalian cell encapsulation.

    PubMed

    Uludag, H; De Vos, P; Tresco, P A

    2000-08-20

    Entrapment of mammalian cells in physical membranes has been practiced since the early 1950s when it was originally introduced as a basic research tool. The method has since been developed based on the promise of its therapeutic usefulness in tissue transplantation. Encapsulation physically isolates a cell mass from an outside environment and aims to maintain normal cellular physiology within a desired permeability barrier. Numerous encapsulation techniques have been developed over the years. These techniques are generally classified as microencapsulation (involving small spherical vehicles and conformally coated tissues) and macroencapsulation (involving larger flat-sheet and hollow-fiber membranes). This review is intended to summarize techniques of cell encapsulation as well as methods for evaluating the performance of encapsulated cells. The techniques reviewed include microencapsulation with polyelectrolyte complexation emphasizing alginate-polylysine capsules, thermoreversible gelation with agarose as a prototype system, interfacial precipitation and interfacial polymerization, as well as the technology of flat sheet and hollow fiber-based macroencapsulation. Four aspects of encapsulated cells that are critical for the success of the technology, namely the capsule permeability, mechanical properties, immune protection and biocompatibility, have been singled out and methods to evaluate these properties were summarized. Finally, speculations regarding future directions of cell encapsulation research and device development are included from the authors' perspective.

  6. Chemosignals, hormones and mammalian reproduction.

    PubMed

    Petrulis, Aras

    2013-05-01

    Many mammalian species use chemosignals to coordinate reproduction by altering the physiology and behavior of both sexes. Chemosignals prime reproductive physiology so that individuals become sexually mature and active at times when mating is most probable and suppress it when it is not. Once in reproductive condition, odors produced and deposited by both males and females are used to find and select individuals for mating. The production, dissemination and appropriate responses to these cues are modulated heavily by organizational and activational effects of gonadal sex steroids and thereby intrinsically link chemical communication to the broader reproductive context. Many compounds have been identified as "pheromones" but very few have met the expectations of that term: a unitary, species-typical substance that is both necessary and sufficient for an experience-independent behavioral or physiological response. In contrast, most responses to chemosignals are dependent or heavily modulated by experience, either in adulthood or during development. Mechanistically, chemosignals are perceived by both main and accessory (vomeronasal) olfactory systems with the importance of each system tied strongly to the nature of the stimulus rather than to the response. In the central nervous system, the vast majority of responses to chemosignals are mediated by cortical and medial amygdala connections with hypothalamic and other forebrain structures. Despite the importance of chemosignals in mammals, many details of chemical communication differ even among closely related species and defy clear categorization. Although generating much research and public interest, strong evidence for the existence of a robust chemical communication among humans is lacking.

  7. Autophagosome formation in mammalian cells.

    PubMed

    Burman, Chloe; Ktistakis, Nicholas T

    2010-12-01

    Autophagy is a fundamental intracellular trafficking pathway conserved from yeast to mammals. It is generally thought to play a pro-survival role, and it can be up regulated in response to both external and intracellular factors, including amino acid starvation, growth factor withdrawal, low cellular energy levels, endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress, hypoxia, oxidative stress, pathogen infection, and organelle damage. During autophagy initiation a portion of the cytosol is surrounded by a flat membrane sheet known as the isolation membrane or phagophore. The isolation membrane then elongates and seals itself to form an autophagosome. The autophagosome fuses with normal endocytic traffic to mature into a late autophagosome, before fusing with lysosomes. The molecular machinery that enables formation of an autophagosome in response to the various autophagy stimuli is almost completely identified in yeast and-thanks to the observed conservation-is also being rapidly elucidated in higher eukaryotes including mammals. What are less clear and currently under intense investigation are the mechanism by which these various autophagy components co-ordinate in order to generate autophagosomes. In this review, we will discuss briefly the fundamental importance of autophagy in various pathophysiological states and we will then review in detail the various players in early autophagy. Our main thesis will be that a conserved group of heteromeric protein complexes and a relatively simple signalling lipid are responsible for the formation of autophagosomes in mammalian cells.

  8. Structure of the mammalian kinetochore.

    PubMed

    Ris, H; Witt, P L

    1981-01-01

    The structure of the mammalian trilaminar kinetochore was investigated using stereo electron microscopy of chromosomes in hypotonic solutions which unraveled the chromosome but maintained microtubules. Mouse and Chinese hamster ovary cells were arrested in Colcemid and allowed to reform microtubules after Colcemid was removed. Recovered cells were then swelled, lysed or spread in hypotonic solutions which contained D2O to preserve microtubules. The chromosomes were observed in thin and thick sections and as whole mounts using high voltage electron microscopy. Bundles of microtubules were seen directly attached to chromatin, indicating that the kinetochore outer layer represents a differential arrangement of chromatin, continuous with the body of the chromosome. In cells fixed wihout pretreatment, the outer layer could be seen to be composed of hairpin loops of chromatin stacked together to form a solid layer. The hypotonically-induced unraveling of the outer layer was found to be reversible, and the typical 300 nm thick disk reformed when cells were returned to isotonic solutions. Short microtubules, newly nucleated after Colcemid removal, were found not to be attached to the kinetochore out layer, but were situated in the fibrous corona on the external surface of the outer layer. This was verified by observation of thick sections in stereo which made it possible to identify microtubules ends within the section. Thus, kinetochore microtubules are nucleated within the fibrous corona, and subsequently become attached to the outer layer.

  9. Mammalian cell cultivation in space

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gmünder, Felix K.; Suter, Robert N.; Kiess, M.; Urfer, R.; Nordau, C.-G.; Cogoli, A.

    Equipment used in space for the cultivation of mammalian cells does not meet the usual standard of earth bound bioreactors. Thus, the development of a space worthy bioreactor is mandatory for two reasons: First, to investigate the effect on single cells of the space environment in general and microgravity conditions in particular, and second, to provide researchers on long term missions and the Space Station with cell material. However, expertise for this venture is not at hand. A small and simple device for animal cell culture experiments aboard Spacelab (Dynamic Cell Culture System; DCCS) was developed. It provides 2 cell culture chambers, one is operated as a batch system, the other one as a perfusion system. The cell chambers have a volume of 200 μl. Medium exchange is achieved with an automatic osmotic pump. The system is neither mechanically stirred nor equipped with sensors. Oxygen for cell growth is provided by a gas chamber that is adjacent to the cell chambers. The oxygen gradient produced by the growing cells serves to maintain the oxygen influx by diffusion. Hamster kidney cells growing on microcarriers were used to test the biological performance of the DCCS. On ground tests suggest that this system is feasible.

  10. High resolution thermal denaturation of mammalian DNAs.

    PubMed Central

    Guttmann, T; Vítek, A; Pivec, L

    1977-01-01

    High resolution melting profiles of different mammalian DNAs are presented. Melting curves of various mammalian DNAs were compared with respect to the degree of asymmetry, first moment, transition breath and Tmi of individual subtransitions. Quantitative comparison of the shape of all melting curves was made. Correlation between phylogenetical relations among mammals and shape of the melting profiles of their DNAs was demonstrated. The difference between multi-component heterogeneity of mammalian DNAs found by optical melting analysis and sedimentation in CsCl-netropsin density gradient is also discussed. PMID:840642

  11. Ghrelin Receptors in Non-Mammalian Vertebrates

    PubMed Central

    Kaiya, Hiroyuki; Kangawa, Kenji; Miyazato, Mikiya

    2012-01-01

    The growth hormone secretagogue-receptor (GHS-R) was discovered in humans and pigs in 1996. The endogenous ligand, ghrelin, was discovered 3 years later, in 1999, and our understanding of the physiological significance of the ghrelin system in vertebrates has grown steadily since then. Although the ghrelin system in non-mammalian vertebrates is a subject of great interest, protein sequence data for the receptor in non-mammalian vertebrates has been limited until recently, and related biological information has not been well organized. In this review, we summarize current information related to the ghrelin receptor in non-mammalian vertebrates. PMID:23882259

  12. Evolution, development, and initial function of the mammalian neocortex: response of the germinal zones to endothermy.

    PubMed

    Smart, I H M

    2008-01-01

    In the mouse the release of neocortical neurons from the periventricular germinal layers of the forebrain commences towards the ventral margin of the lateral pallium at the level of the interventricular foramen and is propagated from there across the lateral wall of the hemisphere. In the adult cortex the origin of the gradient corresponded to the ventral portion of the somatotopic map of the body, that is, to the area representating structures derived from the embryonic branchial arches, namely, the peri-oral region and laryngo-pharyngeal masticatory apparatus. Branchial arch nerves also innervate the fore- and mid-gut and all the related exocrine and endocrine glands. This suggests that the mammalian neocortex evolved from a visceral integration area in a positionally equivalent area in the pallium of a reptilian ancestor which expanded in relation to extensive changes taking place in the visceral and branchial systems of the body during the transition from reptilian ectothermy to mammalian endothermy. The practical problem facing early mammals was to acquire and process the extra energy required to sustain a continuously high metabolic rate. Improvements to the food processing capabilities of the visceral and branchial systems and the expansion of their neural control were important components in the conglomerate of changes required to sustain the increased energy demands of endothermic tissues. Endothermy also bestowed the ability to sustain greater numbers of metabolically expensive neurons and this, in turn, required an appropriate response from the cell production mechanisms in the periventricular germinal layers.

  13. Seed ferns from the late Paleozoic and Mesozoic: Any angiosperm ancestors lurking there?

    PubMed

    Taylor, Edith L; Taylor, Thomas N

    2009-01-01

    Five orders of late Paleozoic-Mesozoic seed ferns have, at one time or another, figured in discussions on the origin of angiosperms, even before the application of phylogenetic systematics. These are the Glossopteridales, Peltaspermales, Corystospermales, Caytoniales, and Petriellales. Although vegetative features have been used to suggest homologies, most discussion has focused on ovulate structures, which are generally interpreted as megasporophylls bearing seeds, with the seeds partially to almost completely enclosed by the megasporophyll (or cupule). Here we discuss current information about the reproductive parts of these plants. Since most specimens are impression-compression remains, homologizing the ovulate organs, deriving angiospermous homologues, and defining synapomorphies remain somewhat speculative. Although new specimens have increased the known diversity in these groups, a reconstruction of an entire plant is available only for the corystosperms, and thus hypotheses about phylogenetic position are of limited value. We conclude that, in the case of these seed plants, phylogenetic analysis techniques have surpassed the hard data needed to formulate meaningful phylogenetic hypotheses. Speculation on angiosperm origins and transitional stages in these fossils provides for interesting discussion, but currently it is still speculation, as the role of these groups in the origin of angiospermy continues to be cloaked in Darwin's mystery.

  14. Enzymology of Mammalian DNA Methyltransferases.

    PubMed

    Jurkowska, Renata Z; Jeltsch, Albert

    2016-01-01

    DNA methylation is currently one of the hottest topics in basic and biomedical research. Despite tremendous progress in understanding the structures and biochemical properties of the mammalian DNA nucleotide methyltransferases (DNMTs), principles of their regulation in cells have only begun to be uncovered. In mammals, DNA methylation is introduced by the DNMT1, DNMT3A, and DNMT3B enzymes, which are all large multi-domain proteins. These enzymes contain a catalytic C-terminal domain with a characteristic cytosine-C5 methyltransferase fold and an N-terminal part with different domains that interacts with other proteins and chromatin and is involved in targeting and regulation of the DNMTs. The subnuclear localization of the DNMT enzymes plays an important role in their biological function: DNMT1 is localized to replicating DNA via interaction with PCNA and UHRF1. DNMT3 enzymes bind to heterochromatin via protein multimerization and are targeted to chromatin by their ADD and PWWP domains. Recently, a novel regulatory mechanism has been discovered in DNMTs, as latest structural and functional data demonstrated that the catalytic activities of all three enzymes are under tight allosteric control of their N-terminal domains having autoinhibitory functions. This mechanism provides numerous possibilities for the precise regulation of the methyltransferases via controlling the binding and release of autoinhibitory domains by protein factors, noncoding RNAs, or by posttranslational modifications of the DNMTs. In this chapter, we summarize key enzymatic properties of DNMTs, including their specificity and processivity, and afterward we focus on the regulation of their activity and targeting via allosteric processes, protein interactors, and posttranslational modifications.

  15. Chemosignals, Hormones and Mammalian Reproduction

    PubMed Central

    Petrulis, Aras

    2013-01-01

    Many mammalian species use chemosignals to coordinate reproduction by altering the physiology and behavior of both sexes. Chemosignals prime reproductive physiology so that individuals become sexually mature and active at times when mating is most probable and suppress it when it is not. Once in reproductive condition, odors produced and deposited by both males and females are used to find and select individuals for mating. The production, dissemination and appropriate responses to these cues are modulated heavily by organizational and activational effects of gonadal sex steroids and thereby intrinsically link chemical communication to the broader reproductive context. Many compounds have been identified as “pheromones” but very few have met the expectations of that term: a unitary, species-typical substance that is both necessary and sufficient for an experience-independent behavioral or physiological response. In contrast, most responses to chemosignals are dependent or heavily modulated by experience, either in adulthood or during development. Mechanistically, chemosignals are perceived by both main and accessory (vomeronasal) olfactory systems with the importance of each system tied strongly to the nature of the stimulus rather than to the response. In the central nervous system, the vast majority of responses to chemosignals are mediated by cortical and medial amygdala connections with hypothalamic and other forebrain structures. Despite the importance of chemosignals in mammals, many details of chemical communication differ even among closely related species and defy clear categorization. Although generating much research and public interest, strong evidence for the existence of a robust chemical communication among humans is lacking. PMID:23545474

  16. Mammalian synthetic biology: emerging medical applications.

    PubMed

    Kis, Zoltán; Pereira, Hugo Sant'Ana; Homma, Takayuki; Pedrigi, Ryan M; Krams, Rob

    2015-05-06

    In this review, we discuss new emerging medical applications of the rapidly evolving field of mammalian synthetic biology. We start with simple mammalian synthetic biological components and move towards more complex and therapy-oriented gene circuits. A comprehensive list of ON-OFF switches, categorized into transcriptional, post-transcriptional, translational and post-translational, is presented in the first sections. Subsequently, Boolean logic gates, synthetic mammalian oscillators and toggle switches will be described. Several synthetic gene networks are further reviewed in the medical applications section, including cancer therapy gene circuits, immuno-regulatory networks, among others. The final sections focus on the applicability of synthetic gene networks to drug discovery, drug delivery, receptor-activating gene circuits and mammalian biomanufacturing processes.

  17. Bats and Rodents Shape Mammalian Retroviral Phylogeny.

    PubMed

    Cui, Jie; Tachedjian, Gilda; Wang, Lin-Fa

    2015-11-09

    Endogenous retroviruses (ERVs) represent past retroviral infections and accordingly can provide an ideal framework to infer virus-host interaction over their evolutionary history. In this study, we target high quality Pol sequences from 7,994 Class I and 8,119 Class II ERVs from 69 mammalian genomes and surprisingly find that retroviruses harbored by bats and rodents combined occupy the major phylogenetic diversity of both classes. By analyzing transmission patterns of 30 well-defined ERV clades, we corroborate the previously published observation that rodents are more competent as originators of mammalian retroviruses and reveal that bats are more capable of receiving retroviruses from non-bat mammalian origins. The powerful retroviral hosting ability of bats is further supported by a detailed analysis revealing that the novel bat gammaretrovirus, Rhinolophus ferrumequinum retrovirus, likely originated from tree shrews. Taken together, this study advances our understanding of host-shaped mammalian retroviral evolution in general.

  18. Mammalian synthetic biology: emerging medical applications

    PubMed Central

    Kis, Zoltán; Pereira, Hugo Sant'Ana; Homma, Takayuki; Pedrigi, Ryan M.; Krams, Rob

    2015-01-01

    In this review, we discuss new emerging medical applications of the rapidly evolving field of mammalian synthetic biology. We start with simple mammalian synthetic biological components and move towards more complex and therapy-oriented gene circuits. A comprehensive list of ON–OFF switches, categorized into transcriptional, post-transcriptional, translational and post-translational, is presented in the first sections. Subsequently, Boolean logic gates, synthetic mammalian oscillators and toggle switches will be described. Several synthetic gene networks are further reviewed in the medical applications section, including cancer therapy gene circuits, immuno-regulatory networks, among others. The final sections focus on the applicability of synthetic gene networks to drug discovery, drug delivery, receptor-activating gene circuits and mammalian biomanufacturing processes. PMID:25808341

  19. Bats and Rodents Shape Mammalian Retroviral Phylogeny

    PubMed Central

    Cui, Jie; Tachedjian, Gilda; Wang, Lin-Fa

    2015-01-01

    Endogenous retroviruses (ERVs) represent past retroviral infections and accordingly can provide an ideal framework to infer virus-host interaction over their evolutionary history. In this study, we target high quality Pol sequences from 7,994 Class I and 8,119 Class II ERVs from 69 mammalian genomes and surprisingly find that retroviruses harbored by bats and rodents combined occupy the major phylogenetic diversity of both classes. By analyzing transmission patterns of 30 well-defined ERV clades, we corroborate the previously published observation that rodents are more competent as originators of mammalian retroviruses and reveal that bats are more capable of receiving retroviruses from non-bat mammalian origins. The powerful retroviral hosting ability of bats is further supported by a detailed analysis revealing that the novel bat gammaretrovirus, Rhinolophus ferrumequinum retrovirus, likely originated from tree shrews. Taken together, this study advances our understanding of host-shaped mammalian retroviral evolution in general. PMID:26548564

  20. Ancient wolf genome reveals an early divergence of domestic dog ancestors and admixture into high-latitude breeds.

    PubMed

    Skoglund, Pontus; Ersmark, Erik; Palkopoulou, Eleftheria; Dalén, Love

    2015-06-01

    The origin of domestic dogs is poorly understood [1-15], with suggested evidence of dog-like features in fossils that predate the Last Glacial Maximum [6, 9, 10, 14, 16] conflicting with genetic estimates of a more recent divergence between dogs and worldwide wolf populations [13, 15, 17-19]. Here, we present a draft genome sequence from a 35,000-year-old wolf from the Taimyr Peninsula in northern Siberia. We find that this individual belonged to a population that diverged from the common ancestor of present-day wolves and dogs very close in time to the appearance of the domestic dog lineage. We use the directly dated ancient wolf genome to recalibrate the molecular timescale of wolves and dogs and find that the mutation rate is substantially slower than assumed by most previous studies, suggesting that the ancestors of dogs were separated from present-day wolves before the Last Glacial Maximum. We also find evidence of introgression from the archaic Taimyr wolf lineage into present-day dog breeds from northeast Siberia and Greenland, contributing between 1.4% and 27.3% of their ancestry. This demonstrates that the ancestry of present-day dogs is derived from multiple regional wolf populations.

  1. Spatial and temporal arrival patterns of Madagascar's vertebrate fauna explained by distance, ocean currents, and ancestor type.

    PubMed

    Samonds, Karen E; Godfrey, Laurie R; Ali, Jason R; Goodman, Steven M; Vences, Miguel; Sutherland, Michael R; Irwin, Mitchell T; Krause, David W

    2012-04-03

    How, when, and from where Madagascar's vertebrates arrived on the island is poorly known, and a comprehensive explanation for the distribution of its organisms has yet to emerge. We begin to break that impasse by analyzing vertebrate arrival patterns implied by currently existing taxa. For each of 81 clades, we compiled arrival date, source, and ancestor type (obligate freshwater, terrestrial, facultative swimmer, or volant). We analyzed changes in arrival rates, with and without adjusting for clade extinction. Probability of successful transoceanic dispersal is negatively correlated with distance traveled and influenced by ocean currents and ancestor type. Obligate rafters show a decrease in probability of successful transoceanic dispersal from the Paleocene onward, reaching the lowest levels after the mid-Miocene. This finding is consistent with a paleoceanographic model [Ali JR, Huber M (2010) Nature 463:653-656] that predicts Early Cenozoic surface currents periodically conducive to rafting or swimming from Africa, followed by a reconfiguration to present-day flow 15-20 million years ago that significantly diminished the ability for transoceanic dispersal to Madagascar from the adjacent mainland.

  2. Evidence that CRABS CLAW and TOUSLED have conserved their roles in carpel development since the ancestor of the extant angiosperms

    PubMed Central

    Fourquin, Chloé; Vinauger-Douard, Marion; Fogliani, Bruno; Dumas, Christian; Scutt, Charles P.

    2005-01-01

    The carpel is the female reproductive organ specific to flowering plants. We aim to define the genes that controlled carpel development in the common ancestor of this group as a step toward determining the molecular events that were responsible for the evolution of the carpel. CRABS CLAW (CRC) and TOUSLED (TSL) control important aspects of carpel development in the model plant, Arabidopsis thaliana. The basal angiosperm species Amborella trichopoda and Cabomba aquatica very likely represent the two most early diverging groups of flowering plants. We have identified putative orthologues of CRC and TSL from A. trichopoda and C. aquatica, respectively. We demonstrate the expression patterns of these genes in carpels to be very highly conserved, both spatially and temporally, with those of their Arabidopsis orthologues. We argue that CRC and TSL in Arabidopsis are likely to have conserved their respective roles in carpel development since the common ancestor of the living flowering plants. We conclude that a divergent role shown for the CRC orthologue in rice, DROOPING LEAF, most probably arose specifically in the monocot lineage. We show that, in addition to its expression in carpels, the TSL orthologue of C. aquatica is expressed in tissues that contribute to buoyancy and argue that its role in these tissues may have arisen later than its role in carpel development. PMID:15767586

  3. Spatial and temporal arrival patterns of Madagascar's vertebrate fauna explained by distance, ocean currents, and ancestor type

    PubMed Central

    Samonds, Karen E.; Godfrey, Laurie R.; Ali, Jason R.; Goodman, Steven M.; Vences, Miguel; Sutherland, Michael R.; Irwin, Mitchell T.; Krause, David W.

    2012-01-01

    How, when, and from where Madagascar's vertebrates arrived on the island is poorly known, and a comprehensive explanation for the distribution of its organisms has yet to emerge. We begin to break that impasse by analyzing vertebrate arrival patterns implied by currently existing taxa. For each of 81 clades, we compiled arrival date, source, and ancestor type (obligate freshwater, terrestrial, facultative swimmer, or volant). We analyzed changes in arrival rates, with and without adjusting for clade extinction. Probability of successful transoceanic dispersal is negatively correlated with distance traveled and influenced by ocean currents and ancestor type. Obligate rafters show a decrease in probability of successful transoceanic dispersal from the Paleocene onward, reaching the lowest levels after the mid-Miocene. This finding is consistent with a paleoceanographic model [Ali JR, Huber M (2010) Nature 463:653–656] that predicts Early Cenozoic surface currents periodically conducive to rafting or swimming from Africa, followed by a reconfiguration to present-day flow 15–20 million years ago that significantly diminished the ability for transoceanic dispersal to Madagascar from the adjacent mainland. PMID:22431643

  4. Neuromagnetic source reconstruction

    SciTech Connect

    Lewis, P.S.; Mosher, J.C.; Leahy, R.M.

    1994-12-31

    In neuromagnetic source reconstruction, a functional map of neural activity is constructed from noninvasive magnetoencephalographic (MEG) measurements. The overall reconstruction problem is under-determined, so some form of source modeling must be applied. We review the two main classes of reconstruction techniques-parametric current dipole models and nonparametric distributed source reconstructions. Current dipole reconstructions use a physically plausible source model, but are limited to cases in which the neural currents are expected to be highly sparse and localized. Distributed source reconstructions can be applied to a wider variety of cases, but must incorporate an implicit source, model in order to arrive at a single reconstruction. We examine distributed source reconstruction in a Bayesian framework to highlight the implicit nonphysical Gaussian assumptions of minimum norm based reconstruction algorithms. We conclude with a brief discussion of alternative non-Gaussian approachs.

  5. Pathways of mammalian replication fork restart.

    PubMed

    Petermann, Eva; Helleday, Thomas

    2010-10-01

    Single-molecule analyses of DNA replication have greatly advanced our understanding of mammalian replication restart. Several proteins that are not part of the core replication machinery promote the efficient restart of replication forks that have been stalled by replication inhibitors, suggesting that bona fide fork restart pathways exist in mammalian cells. Different models of replication fork restart can be envisaged, based on the involvement of DNA helicases, nucleases, homologous recombination factors and the importance of DNA double-strand break formation.

  6. Circadian Plasticity of Mammalian Inhibitory Interneurons

    PubMed Central

    2017-01-01

    Inhibitory interneurons participate in all neuronal circuits in the mammalian brain, including the circadian clock system, and are indispensable for their effective function. Although the clock neurons have different molecular and electrical properties, their main function is the generation of circadian oscillations. Here we review the circadian plasticity of GABAergic interneurons in several areas of the mammalian brain, suprachiasmatic nucleus, neocortex, hippocampus, olfactory bulb, cerebellum, striatum, and in the retina. PMID:28367335

  7. Hacking the genetic code of mammalian cells.

    PubMed

    Schwarzer, Dirk

    2009-07-06

    A genetic shuttle: The highlighted article, which was recently published by Schultz, Geierstanger and co-workers, describes a straightforward scheme for enlarging the genetic code of mammalian cells. An orthogonal tRNA/aminoacyl-tRNA synthetase pair specific for a new amino acid can be evolved in E. coli and subsequently transferred into mammalian cells. The feasibility of this approach was demonstrated by adding a photocaged lysine derivative to the genetic repertoire of a human cell line.

  8. Reconstructing disease outbreaks from genetic data: a graph approach.

    PubMed

    Jombart, T; Eggo, R M; Dodd, P J; Balloux, F

    2011-02-01

    Epidemiology and public health planning will increasingly rely on the analysis of genetic sequence data. In particular, genetic data coupled with dates and locations of sampled isolates can be used to reconstruct the spatiotemporal dynamics of pathogens during outbreaks. Thus far, phylogenetic methods have been used to tackle this issue. Although these approaches have proved useful for informing on the spread of pathogens, they do not aim at directly reconstructing the underlying transmission tree. Instead, phylogenetic models infer most recent common ancestors between pairs of isolates, which can be inadequate for densely sampled recent outbreaks, where the sample includes ancestral and descendent isolates. In this paper, we introduce a novel method based on a graph approach to reconstruct transmission trees directly from genetic data. Using simulated data, we show that our approach can efficiently reconstruct genealogies of isolates in situations where classical phylogenetic approaches fail to do so. We then illustrate our method by analyzing data from the early stages of the swine-origin A/H1N1 influenza pandemic. Using 433 isolates sequenced at both the hemagglutinin and neuraminidase genes, we reconstruct the likely history of the worldwide spread of this new influenza strain. The presented methodology opens new perspectives for the analysis of genetic data in the context of disease outbreaks.

  9. The evolution of mammalian body temperature: the Cenozoic supraendothermic pulses.

    PubMed

    Lovegrove, Barry G

    2012-05-01

    In this study, I investigated the source(s) of variation in the body temperatures of mammals. I also attempted to reconstruct ancestral normothermic rest-phase body temperature states using a maximum parsimony approach. Body temperature at the familial level is not correlated with body mass. For small mammals, except the Macroscelidae, previously identified correlates, such as climate adaptation and zoogeography explained some, but not all, T(b) apomorphies. At the species level in large cursorial mammals, there was a significant correlation between body temperature and the ratio between metatarsal length and femur length, the proxy for stride length and cursoriality. With the exception of two primate families, all supraendothermic (T(b) > 37.9°C) mammals are cursorial, including Artiodactyla, Lagomorpha, some large Rodentia, and Carnivora. The ruminant supraendothermic cursorial pulse is putatively associated with global cooling and vegetation changes following the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum. Reconstructed ancestral body temperatures were highly unrealistic deep within the mammalian phylogeny because of the lack of fossil T(b) data that effectively creates ghost lineages. However, it is anticipated that the method of estimating body temperature from the abundance of ¹³C-¹⁸O bonds in the carbonate component of tooth bioapatite in both extant and extinct animals may be a very promising tool for estimating the T(b) of extinct mammals. Fossil T(b) data are essential for discerning derived T(b) reversals from ancestral states, and verifying the dates of supraendothermic pulses.

  10. Ancestry of the mammalian preplate and its derivatives: evolutionary relicts or embryonic adaptations?

    PubMed

    Aboitiz, Francisco; Montiel, Juan; García, Ricardo R

    2005-01-01

    Mammalian cortical development is preceded by the elaboration of a transient preplate, which is split into a superficial marginal zone and a deep subplate after the arrival of the cortical plate. There has been some controversy in the evolutionary interpretation of this transient structure, as some propose it to represent the ancestral cortex or pallium of non-mammals, while others consider it to be a phylogenetic novelty. The preplate and its derivatives contain components derived by both tangential and radial migration. Tangentially migrating elements include pioneer neurons and interneurons, both of subpallial origin, and Cajal-Retzius cells, mostly of pallial origin. Pioneer neurons were probably present in the ancestors of mammals, but may have changed their original superficial position to one below the developing cortex, thus attracting thalamic afferents in the subcortical white matter, and making them penetrate the cortex radially. In mammals, Cajal-Retzius cells appear to have increased both in number and on their level of reelin expression, perhaps in the context of controlling the final stages of migration in a radially expanding neoocortex. Radial-migrating cells are partly represented by the pyramidal-like cells of the subplate. These neurons resemble the excitatory elements of the adult reptilian cortex, but is not clear whether they are their true homologues. One possibility is that these cells appeared by virtue of a heterochronic process in which the earliest radial elements of the cortical plate began to be produced at progressively earlier developmental stages. Thus, we conclude that the mammalian preplate and its derivatives contain both ancestral and derived elements, all of which have been modified in the course of mammalian evolution to support an increasingly complex cortical plate development.

  11. Masticatory loading, function, and plasticity: a microanatomical analysis of mammalian circumorbital soft-tissue structures.

    PubMed

    Jasarević, Eldin; Ning, Jie; Daniel, Ashley N; Menegaz, Rachel A; Johnson, Jeffrey J; Stack, M Sharon; Ravosa, Matthew J

    2010-04-01

    In contrast to experimental evidence regarding the postorbital bar, postorbital septum, and browridge, there is exceedingly little evidence regarding the load-bearing nature of soft-tissue structures of the mammalian circumorbital region. This hinders our understanding of pronounced transformations during primate origins, in which euprimates evolved a postorbital bar from an ancestor with the primitive mammalian condition where only soft tissues spanned the lateral orbital margin between frontal bone and zygomatic arch. To address this significant gap, we investigated the postorbital microanatomy of rabbits subjected to long-term variation in diet-induced masticatory stresses. Rabbits exhibit a masticatory complex and feeding behaviors similar to primates, yet retain a more primitive mammalian circumorbital region. Three cohorts were obtained as weanlings and raised on different diets until adult. Following euthanasia, postorbital soft tissues were dissected away, fixed, and decalcified. These soft tissues were divided into inferior, intermediate, and superior units and then dehydrated, embedded, and sectioned. H&E staining was used to characterize overall architecture. Collagen orientation and complexity were evaluated via picrosirius-red staining. Safranin-O identified proteoglycan content with additional immunostaining performed to assess Type-II collagen expression. Surprisingly, the ligament along the lateral orbital wall was composed of elastic fibrocartilage. A more degraded organization of collagen fibers in this postorbital fibrocartilage is correlated with increased masticatory forces due to a more fracture-resistant diet. Furthermore, the lack of marked changes in the extracellular composition of the lateral orbital wall related to tissue viscoelasticity suggests it is unlikely that long-term exposure to elevated masticatory stresses underlies the development of a bony postorbital bar.

  12. Bats host major mammalian paramyxoviruses

    PubMed Central

    Drexler, Jan Felix; Corman, Victor Max; Müller, Marcel Alexander; Maganga, Gael Darren; Vallo, Peter; Binger, Tabea; Gloza-Rausch, Florian; Rasche, Andrea; Yordanov, Stoian; Seebens, Antje; Oppong, Samuel; Sarkodie, Yaw Adu; Pongombo, Célestin; Lukashev, Alexander N.; Schmidt-Chanasit, Jonas; Stöcker, Andreas; Carneiro, Aroldo José Borges; Erbar, Stephanie; Maisner, Andrea; Fronhoffs, Florian; Buettner, Reinhard; Kalko, Elisabeth K.V.; Kruppa, Thomas; Franke, Carlos Roberto; Kallies, René; Yandoko, Emmanuel R.N.; Herrler, Georg; Reusken, Chantal; Hassanin, Alexandre; Krüger, Detlev H.; Matthee, Sonja; Ulrich, Rainer G.; Leroy, Eric M.; Drosten, Christian

    2012-01-01

    The large virus family Paramyxoviridae includes some of the most significant human and livestock viruses, such as measles-, distemper-, mumps-, parainfluenza-, Newcastle disease-, respiratory syncytial virus and metapneumoviruses. Here we identify an estimated 66 new paramyxoviruses in a worldwide sample of 119 bat and rodent species (9,278 individuals). Major discoveries include evidence of an origin of Hendra- and Nipah virus in Africa, identification of a bat virus conspecific with the human mumps virus, detection of close relatives of respiratory syncytial virus, mouse pneumonia- and canine distemper virus in bats, as well as direct evidence of Sendai virus in rodents. Phylogenetic reconstruction of host associations suggests a predominance of host switches from bats to other mammals and birds. Hypothesis tests in a maximum likelihood framework permit the phylogenetic placement of bats as tentative hosts at ancestral nodes to both the major Paramyxoviridae subfamilies (Paramyxovirinae and Pneumovirinae). Future attempts to predict the emergence of novel paramyxoviruses in humans and livestock will have to rely fundamentally on these data. PMID:22531181

  13. Bats host major mammalian paramyxoviruses.

    PubMed

    Drexler, Jan Felix; Corman, Victor Max; Müller, Marcel Alexander; Maganga, Gael Darren; Vallo, Peter; Binger, Tabea; Gloza-Rausch, Florian; Cottontail, Veronika M; Rasche, Andrea; Yordanov, Stoian; Seebens, Antje; Knörnschild, Mirjam; Oppong, Samuel; Adu Sarkodie, Yaw; Pongombo, Célestin; Lukashev, Alexander N; Schmidt-Chanasit, Jonas; Stöcker, Andreas; Carneiro, Aroldo José Borges; Erbar, Stephanie; Maisner, Andrea; Fronhoffs, Florian; Buettner, Reinhard; Kalko, Elisabeth K V; Kruppa, Thomas; Franke, Carlos Roberto; Kallies, René; Yandoko, Emmanuel R N; Herrler, Georg; Reusken, Chantal; Hassanin, Alexandre; Krüger, Detlev H; Matthee, Sonja; Ulrich, Rainer G; Leroy, Eric M; Drosten, Christian

    2012-04-24

    The large virus family Paramyxoviridae includes some of the most significant human and livestock viruses, such as measles-, distemper-, mumps-, parainfluenza-, Newcastle disease-, respiratory syncytial virus and metapneumoviruses. Here we identify an estimated 66 new paramyxoviruses in a worldwide sample of 119 bat and rodent species (9,278 individuals). Major discoveries include evidence of an origin of Hendra- and Nipah virus in Africa, identification of a bat virus conspecific with the human mumps virus, detection of close relatives of respiratory syncytial virus, mouse pneumonia- and canine distemper virus in bats, as well as direct evidence of Sendai virus in rodents. Phylogenetic reconstruction of host associations suggests a predominance of host switches from bats to other mammals and birds. Hypothesis tests in a maximum likelihood framework permit the phylogenetic placement of bats as tentative hosts at ancestral nodes to both the major Paramyxoviridae subfamilies (Paramyxovirinae and Pneumovirinae). Future attempts to predict the emergence of novel paramyxoviruses in humans and livestock will have to rely fundamentally on these data.

  14. Breast Reconstruction after Mastectomy

    PubMed Central

    Schmauss, Daniel; Machens, Hans-Günther; Harder, Yves

    2016-01-01

    Breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in women worldwide. Its surgical approach has become less and less mutilating in the last decades. However, the overall number of breast reconstructions has significantly increased lately. Nowadays, breast reconstruction should be individualized at its best, first of all taking into consideration not only the oncological aspects of the tumor, neo-/adjuvant treatment, and genetic predisposition, but also its timing (immediate versus delayed breast reconstruction), as well as the patient’s condition and wish. This article gives an overview over the various possibilities of breast reconstruction, including implant- and expander-based reconstruction, flap-based reconstruction (vascularized autologous tissue), the combination of implant and flap, reconstruction using non-vascularized autologous fat, as well as refinement surgery after breast reconstruction. PMID:26835456

  15. Breast reconstruction - natural tissue

    MedlinePlus

    ... After a mastectomy , some women choose to have cosmetic surgery to remake their breast. This type of surgery ... augmentation surgery Breast reconstruction - implants Mastectomy Patient Instructions Cosmetic breast surgery - discharge Mastectomy and breast reconstruction - what to ask ...

  16. Breast Reconstruction with Implants

    MedlinePlus

    ... removes your breast to treat or prevent breast cancer. One type of breast reconstruction uses breast implants — silicone devices filled with silicone gel or salt water (saline) — to reshape your breasts. Breast reconstruction ...

  17. Methods of Voice Reconstruction

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Hung-Chi; Kim Evans, Karen F.; Salgado, Christopher J.; Mardini, Samir

    2010-01-01

    This article reviews methods of voice reconstruction. Nonsurgical methods of voice reconstruction include electrolarynx, pneumatic artificial larynx, and esophageal speech. Surgical methods of voice reconstruction include neoglottis, tracheoesophageal puncture, and prosthesis. Tracheoesophageal puncture can be performed in patients with pedicled flaps such as colon interposition, jejunum, or gastric pull-up or in free flaps such as perforator flaps, jejunum, and colon flaps. Other flaps for voice reconstruction include the ileocolon flap and jejunum. Laryngeal transplantation is also reviewed. PMID:22550443

  18. Reoperative midface reconstruction.

    PubMed

    Acero, Julio; García, Eloy

    2011-02-01

    Reoperative reconstruction of the midface is a challenging issue because of the complexity of this region and the severity of the aesthetic and functional sequela related to the absence or failure of a primary reconstruction. The different situations that can lead to the indication of a reoperative reconstructive procedure after previous oncologic ablative procedures in the midface are reviewed. Surgical techniques, anatomic problems, and limitations affecting the reoperative reconstruction in this region of the head and neck are discussed.

  19. Archetype, adaptation and the mammalian heart.

    PubMed

    Meijler, F L; Meijler, T D

    2011-03-01

    Forty years ago, we started our quest for 'The Holy Grail' of understanding ventricular rate control and rhythm in atrial fibrillation (AF). We therefore studied the morphology and function of a wide range of mammalian hearts. From mouse to whale, we found that all hearts show similar structural and functional characteristics. This suggests that the mammalian heart remained well conserved during evolution and in this aspect it differs from other organs and parts of the mammalian body. The archetype of the mammalian heart was apparently so successful that adaptation by natural selection (evolution) caused by varying habitat demands, as occurred in other organs and many other aspects of mammalian anatomy, bypassed the heart. The structure and function of the heart of placental mammals have thus been strikingly conserved throughout evolution. The changes in the mammalian heart that did take place were mostly adjustments (scaling), to compensate for variations in body size and shape. A remarkable scaling effect is, for instance, the difference in atrioventricular (AV) conduction time, which is vital for optimal cardiac function in all mammals, small and large. Scaling of AV conduction takes place in the AV node (AVN), but its substrate is unknown. This sheds new light on the vital role of the AVN in health and disease. The AVN is master and servant of the heart at the same time and is of salient importance for our understanding of supraventricular arrhythmias in humans, especially AF. In Information Technology a software infra-structure called 'enterprise service bus' (ESB) may provide understanding of the mammalian heart's conservation during evolution. The ESB is quite unspecific (and thus general) when compared with the specialised components it has to support. For instance, one of the functions of an ESB is the routing of messages between system nodes. This routing is independent and unaware of the content of the messages. The function of the heart is likewise

  20. A molecular palaeobiological hypothesis for the origin of aplacophoran molluscs and their derivation from chiton-like ancestors.

    PubMed

    Vinther, Jakob; Sperling, Erik A; Briggs, Derek E G; Peterson, Kevin J

    2012-04-07

    Aplacophorans have long been argued to be basal molluscs. We present a molecular phylogeny, including the aplacophorans Neomeniomorpha (Solenogastres) and Chaetodermomorpha (Caudofoveata), which recovered instead the clade Aculifera (Aplacophora + Polyplacophora). Our relaxed Bayesian molecular clock estimates an Early Ordovician appearance of the aculiferan crown group consistent with the presence of chiton-like molluscs with seven or eight dorsal shell plates by the Late Cambrian (approx. 501-490 Ma). Molecular, embryological and palaeontological data indicate that aplacophorans, as well as chitons, evolved from a paraphyletic assemblage of chiton-like ancestors. The recovery of cephalopods as a sister group to aculiferans suggests that the plesiomorphic condition in molluscs might be a morphology similar to that found in monoplacophorans.

  1. A molecular palaeobiological hypothesis for the origin of aplacophoran molluscs and their derivation from chiton-like ancestors

    PubMed Central

    Vinther, Jakob; Sperling, Erik A.; Briggs, Derek E. G.; Peterson, Kevin J.

    2012-01-01

    Aplacophorans have long been argued to be basal molluscs. We present a molecular phylogeny, including the aplacophorans Neomeniomorpha (Solenogastres) and Chaetodermomorpha (Caudofoveata), which recovered instead the clade Aculifera (Aplacophora + Polyplacophora). Our relaxed Bayesian molecular clock estimates an Early Ordovician appearance of the aculiferan crown group consistent with the presence of chiton-like molluscs with seven or eight dorsal shell plates by the Late Cambrian (approx. 501–490 Ma). Molecular, embryological and palaeontological data indicate that aplacophorans, as well as chitons, evolved from a paraphyletic assemblage of chiton-like ancestors. The recovery of cephalopods as a sister group to aculiferans suggests that the plesiomorphic condition in molluscs might be a morphology similar to that found in monoplacophorans. PMID:21976685

  2. Ancestors of two-spirits: Historical depictions of Native North American gender-crossing women through critical discourse analysis.

    PubMed

    Hemmilä, Anita

    2016-01-01

    Letters written by Christian men of European origin during the sixteenth-nineteenth centuries contain brief descriptions of gender-crossing individuals among indigenous Americans. Although now considered ethnocentrically biased because of the etic positioning of their authors, these historical sources are invaluable because they offer a glimpse of the ancestors of modern-day two-spirits. An application of critical discourse analysis to three depictions of gender-crossing females from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries demonstrates that such women were favorably portrayed. These results differ dramatically from those obtained from my similar analysis of depictions of gender-crossing males. It also became evident that the three descriptions of gender-crossing women were not based on actual observations, but only on hearsay, which makes their use as primary sources questionable.

  3. Mammalian Cell-Based Sensor System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Banerjee, Pratik; Franz, Briana; Bhunia, Arun K.

    Use of living cells or cellular components in biosensors is receiving increased attention and opens a whole new area of functional diagnostics. The term "mammalian cell-based biosensor" is designated to biosensors utilizing mammalian cells as the biorecognition element. Cell-based assays, such as high-throughput screening (HTS) or cytotoxicity testing, have already emerged as dependable and promising approaches to measure the functionality or toxicity of a compound (in case of HTS); or to probe the presence of pathogenic or toxigenic entities in clinical, environmental, or food samples. External stimuli or changes in cellular microenvironment sometimes perturb the "normal" physiological activities of mammalian cells, thus allowing CBBs to screen, monitor, and measure the analyte-induced changes. The advantage of CBBs is that they can report the presence or absence of active components, such as live pathogens or active toxins. In some cases, mammalian cells or plasma membranes are used as electrical capacitors and cell-cell and cell-substrate contact is measured via conductivity or electrical impedance. In addition, cytopathogenicity or cytotoxicity induced by pathogens or toxins resulting in apoptosis or necrosis could be measured via optical devices using fluorescence or luminescence. This chapter focuses mainly on the type and applications of different mammalian cell-based sensor systems.

  4. Buds from the tree of life: linking compartmentalized prokaryotes and eukaryotes by a non-hyperthermophile common ancestor and implications for understanding Archaean microbial communities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fuerst, John A.; Nisbet, Euan G.

    2004-07-01

    The origin of the first nucleated eukaryote and the nature of the last common ancestor of the three domains of life are major questions in the evolutionary biology of cellular life on Earth, the solutions to which may be linked. Planctomycetes are unusual compartmentalized bacteria that include a membrane-bounded nucleoid. The possibility that they constitute a very deep branch of the domain Bacteria suggests a model for the evolution of the three domains of life from a last common ancestor that was a mesophile or moderate thermophile with a compartmentalized eukaryote-like cell plan. Planctomycetes and some members of the domain Archaea may have retained cell compartmentalization present in an original eukaryote-like last common ancestor of the three domains of life. The implications of this model for possible habitats of the early evolution of domains of cellular life and for interpretation of geological evidence relating to those habitats and the early emergence of life are examined here.

  5. Involvement of opsins in mammalian sperm thermotaxis

    PubMed Central

    Pérez-Cerezales, Serafín; Boryshpolets, Sergii; Afanzar, Oshri; Brandis, Alexander; Nevo, Reinat; Kiss, Vladimir; Eisenbach, Michael

    2015-01-01

    A unique characteristic of mammalian sperm thermotaxis is extreme temperature sensitivity, manifested by the capacity of spermatozoa to respond to temperature changes of <0.0006 °C as they swim their body-length distance. The identity of the sensing system that confers this exceptional sensitivity on spermatozoa is not known. Here we show that the temperature-sensing system of mammalian spermatozoa involves opsins, known to be G-protein-coupled receptors that act as photosensors in vision. We demonstrate by molecular, immunological, and functional approaches that opsins are present in human and mouse spermatozoa at specific sites, which depend on the species and the opsin type, and that they are involved in sperm thermotaxis via two signalling pathways—the phospholipase C and the cyclic-nucleotide pathways. Our results suggest that, depending on the context and the tissue, mammalian opsins act not only as photosensors but also as thermosensors. PMID:26537127

  6. Mammalian diversity: gametes, embryos and reproduction.

    PubMed

    Behringer, Richard R; Eakin, Guy S; Renfree, Marilyn B

    2006-01-01

    The class Mammalia is composed of approximately 4800 extant species. These mammalian species are divided into three subclasses that include the monotremes, marsupials and eutherians. Monotremes are remarkable because these mammals are born from eggs laid outside of the mother's body. Marsupial mammals have relatively short gestation periods and give birth to highly altricial young that continue a significant amount of 'fetal' development after birth, supported by a highly sophisticated lactation. Less than 10% of mammalian species are monotremes or marsupials, so the great majority of mammals are grouped into the subclass Eutheria, including mouse and human. Mammals exhibit great variety in morphology, physiology and reproduction. In the present article, we highlight some of this remarkable diversity relative to the mouse, one of the most widely used mammalian model organisms, and human. This diversity creates challenges and opportunities for gamete and embryo collection, culture and transfer technologies.

  7. Effect of Microgravity on Mammalian Lymphocytes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Banerjee, H.; Blackshear, M.; Mahaffey, K.; Khan, A. A.; Delucas, L.

    2004-01-01

    The effect of microgravity on mammalian system is an important and interesting topic for scientific investigation, since NASA s objective is to send manned flights to planets like Mars and eventual human colonization. The Astronauts will be exposed to microgravity environment for a long duration of time during these flights. Our objective of research is to conduct in vitro studies for the effect of microgravity on mammalian immune system and nervous system. We did our preliminary investigations by exposing mammalian lymphocytes and astrocyte cells to a microgravity simulator cell bioreactor designed by NASA and manufactured at Synthecon, Inc. (USA).Our initial results showed no significant change in cytokine expression in these cells up to a time period of 120 hours exposure. Our future experiments will involve exposure for a longer period of time.

  8. Effect of Microgravity on Mammalian Lymphocytes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Banerjee, H.; Blackshear, M.; Mahaffey, K.; Knight, C.; Khan, A. A.; Delucas, L.

    2004-01-01

    The effect of microgravity on mammalian system is an important and interesting topic for scientific investigation, since NASA s objective is to send manned flights to planets like Mars and eventual human colonization.The Astronauts will be exposed to microgravity environment for a long duration of time during these flights.Our objective of research is to conduct in vitro studies for the effect of microgravity on mammalian immune system.We did our preliminary investigations by exposing mammalian lymphocytes to a microgravity simulator cell bioreactor designed by NASA and manufactured at Synthecon Inc (USA).Our initial results showed no significant change in cytokine expression in these cells for a time period of forty eight hours exposure.Our future experiments will involve exposure for a longer period of time.

  9. [Breast reconstruction after mastectomy].

    PubMed

    Ho Quoc, C; Delay, E

    2013-02-01

    The mutilating surgery for breast cancer causes deep somatic and psychological sequelae. Breast reconstruction can mitigate these effects and permit the patient to help rebuild their lives. The purpose of this paper is to focus on breast reconstruction techniques and on factors involved in breast reconstruction. The methods of breast reconstruction are presented: objectives, indications, different techniques, operative risks, and long-term monitoring. Many different techniques can now allow breast reconstruction in most patients. Clinical cases are also presented in order to understand the results we expect from a breast reconstruction. Breast reconstruction provides many benefits for patients in terms of rehabilitation, wellness, and quality of life. In our mind, breast reconstruction should be considered more as an opportunity and a positive choice (the patient can decide to do it), than as an obligation (that the patient would suffer). The consultation with the surgeon who will perform the reconstruction is an important step to give all necessary informations. It is really important that the patient could speak again with him before undergoing reconstruction, if she has any doubt. The quality of information given by medical doctors is essential to the success of psychological intervention. This article was written in a simple, and understandable way to help gynecologists giving the best information to their patients. It is maybe also possible to let them a copy of this article, which would enable them to have a written support and would facilitate future consultation with the surgeon who will perform the reconstruction.

  10. The mammalian blastema: regeneration at our fingertips

    PubMed Central

    Simkin, Jennifer; Sammarco, Mimi C.; Dawson, Lindsay A.; Schanes, Paula P.; Yu, Ling

    2015-01-01

    Abstract In the mouse, digit tip regeneration progresses through a series of discrete stages that include inflammation, histolysis, epidermal closure, blastema formation, and redifferentiation. Recent studies reveal how each regenerative stage influences subsequent stages to establish a blastema that directs the successful regeneration of a complex mammalian structure. The focus of this review is on early events of healing and how an amputation wound transitions into a functional blastema. The stepwise formation of a mammalian blastema is proposed to provide a model for how specific targeted treatments can enhance regenerative performance in humans. PMID:27499871

  11. Medical and experimental mammalian genetics: A perspective

    SciTech Connect

    McKusick, V.A.; Roderick, T.H.; Mori, J.; Paul, N.W.

    1987-01-01

    This book contains 14 papers. Some of the titles are: Structure and Organization of Mammalian Chromosomes: Normal and Abnormal; Globin Gene Structure and the Nature of Mutation; Retroviral DNA Content of the Mouse Genome; Maternal Genes: Mitochondrial Diseases; Human Evolution; and Prospects for Gene Replacement Therapy.

  12. A promoter-level mammalian expression atlas

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Regulated transcription controls the diversity, developmental pathways and spatial organization of the hundreds of cell types that make up a mammal. Using single-molecule cDNA sequencing, we mapped transcription start sites (TSSs) and their usage in human and mouse primary cells, cell lines and tissues to produce a comprehensive overview of mammalian gene expression across the human body. We find that few genes are truly ‘housekeeping’, whereas many mammalian promoters are composite entities composed of several closely separated TSSs, with independent cell-type-specific expression profiles. TSSs specific to different cell types evolve at different rates, whereas promoters of broadly expressed genes are the most conserved. Promoter-based expression analysis reveals key transcription factors defining cell states and links them to binding-site motifs. The functions of identified novel transcripts can be predicted by coexpression and sample ontology enrichment analyses. The functional annotation of the mammalian genome 5 (FANTOM5) project provides comprehensive expression profiles and functional annotation of mammalian cell-type-specific transcriptomes with wide applications in biomedical research. PMID:24670764

  13. Architecture of mammalian respiratory complex I.

    PubMed

    Vinothkumar, Kutti R; Zhu, Jiapeng; Hirst, Judy

    2014-11-06

    Complex I (NADH:ubiquinone oxidoreductase) is essential for oxidative phosphorylation in mammalian mitochondria. It couples electron transfer from NADH to ubiquinone with proton translocation across the energy-transducing inner membrane, providing electrons for respiration and driving ATP synthesis. Mammalian complex I contains 44 different nuclear- and mitochondrial-encoded subunits, with a combined mass of 1 MDa. The 14 conserved 'core' subunits have been structurally defined in the minimal, bacterial complex, but the structures and arrangement of the 30 'supernumerary' subunits are unknown. Here we describe a 5 Å resolution structure of complex I from Bos taurus heart mitochondria, a close relative of the human enzyme, determined by single-particle electron cryo-microscopy. We present the structures of the mammalian core subunits that contain eight iron-sulphur clusters and 60 transmembrane helices, identify 18 supernumerary transmembrane helices, and assign and model 14 supernumerary subunits. Thus, we considerably advance knowledge of the structure of mammalian complex I and the architecture of its supernumerary ensemble around the core domains. Our structure provides insights into the roles of the supernumerary subunits in regulation, assembly and homeostasis, and a basis for understanding the effects of mutations that cause a diverse range of human diseases.

  14. Architecture of mammalian respiratory complex I

    PubMed Central

    Hirst, Judy

    2014-01-01

    Complex I (NADH:ubiquinone oxidoreductase) is essential for oxidative phosphorylation in mammalian mitochondria. It couples electron transfer from NADH to ubiquinone with proton translocation across the energy-transducing inner membrane, providing electrons for respiration and driving ATP synthesis. Mammalian complex I contains 44 different nuclear- and mitochondrial-encoded subunits, with a combined mass of 1 MDa. The fourteen conserved ‘core’ subunits have been structurally defined in the minimal, bacterial complex, but the structures and arrangement of the 30 ‘supernumerary’ subunits are unknown. Here, we describe a 5 Å resolution structure of complex I from Bos taurus heart mitochondria, a close relative of the human enzyme, determined by single-particle electron cryo-microscopy. We present the structures of the mammalian core subunits that contain eight iron-sulphur clusters and 60 transmembrane helices, identify 18 supernumerary transmembrane helices, and assign and model 14 supernumerary subunits. Thus, we significantly advance knowledge of the structure of mammalian complex I and the architecture of its supernumerary ensemble around the core domains. Our structure provides insights into the roles of the supernumerary subunits in regulation, assembly and homeostasis, and a basis for understanding the effects of mutations that cause a diverse range of human diseases. PMID:25209663

  15. Erythropoietin binding protein from mammalian serum

    DOEpatents

    Clemons, G.K.

    1997-04-29

    Purified mammalian erythropoietin binding-protein is disclosed, and its isolation, identification, characterization, purification, and immunoassay are described. The erythropoietin binding protein can be used for regulation of erythropoiesis by regulating levels and half-life of erythropoietin. A diagnostic kit for determination of level of erythropoietin binding protein is also described. 11 figs.

  16. Erythropoietin binding protein from mammalian serum

    DOEpatents

    Clemons, Gisela K.

    1997-01-01

    Purified mammalian erythropoietin binding-protein is disclosed, and its isolation, identification, characterization, purification, and immunoassay are described. The erythropoietin binding protein can be used for regulation of erythropoiesis by regulating levels and half-life of erythropoietin. A diagnostic kit for determination of level of erythropoietin binding protein is also described.

  17. Cultured normal mammalian tissue and process

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Goodwin, Thomas J. (Inventor); Prewett, Tacey L. (Inventor); Wolf, David A. (Inventor); Spaulding, Glenn F. (Inventor)

    1993-01-01

    Normal mammalian tissue and the culturing process has been developed for the three groups of organ, structural and blood tissue. The cells are grown in vitro under microgravity culture conditions and form three dimensional cell aggregates with normal cell function. The microgravity culture conditions may be microgravity or simulated microgravity created in a horizontal rotating wall culture vessel.

  18. Structure of mammalian respiratory complex I

    PubMed Central

    Hirst, Judy

    2016-01-01

    Complex I (NADH:ubiquinone oxidoreductase), one of the largest membrane-bound enzymes in the cell, powers ATP synthesis in mammalian mitochondria by using the reducing potential of NADH to drive protons across the inner membrane. Mammalian complex I1 contains 45 subunits, comprising 14 core subunits that house the catalytic machinery and are conserved from bacteria to humans, and a mammalian-specific cohort of 31 supernumerary subunits1,2. Knowledge about the structures and functions of the supernumerary subunits is fragmentary. Here, we describe a 4.2 Å resolution single-particle cryoEM structure of complex I from Bos taurus. We locate and model all 45 subunits to provide the entire structure of the mammalian complex. Furthermore, computational sorting of the particles identified different structural classes, related by subtle domain movements, which reveal conformationally-dynamic regions and match biochemical descriptions of the ‘active-to-deactive’ enzyme transition that occurs during hypoxia3,4. Thus, our structures provide a foundation for understanding complex I assembly5 and the effects of mutations that cause clinically-relevant complex I dysfunctions6, insights into the structural and functional roles of the supernumerary subunits, and new information on the mechanism and regulation of catalysis. PMID:27509854

  19. Crossroads between Bacterial and Mammalian Glycosyltransferases

    PubMed Central

    Brockhausen, Inka

    2014-01-01

    Bacterial glycosyltransferases (GT) often synthesize the same glycan linkages as mammalian GT; yet, they usually have very little sequence identity. Nevertheless, enzymatic properties, folding, substrate specificities, and catalytic mechanisms of these enzyme proteins may have significant similarity. Thus, bacterial GT can be utilized for the enzymatic synthesis of both bacterial and mammalian types of complex glycan structures. A comparison is made here between mammalian and bacterial enzymes that synthesize epitopes found in mammalian glycoproteins, and those found in the O antigens of Gram-negative bacteria. These epitopes include Thomsen–Friedenreich (TF or T) antigen, blood group O, A, and B, type 1 and 2 chains, Lewis antigens, sialylated and fucosylated structures, and polysialic acids. Many different approaches can be taken to investigate the substrate binding and catalytic mechanisms of GT, including crystal structure analyses, mutations, comparison of amino acid sequences, NMR, and mass spectrometry. Knowledge of the protein structures and functions helps to design GT for specific glycan synthesis and to develop inhibitors. The goals are to develop new strategies to reduce bacterial virulence and to synthesize vaccines and other biologically active glycan structures. PMID:25368613

  20. Ticks Take Cues from Mammalian Interferon.

    PubMed

    de Silva, Aravinda M

    2016-07-13

    Interferons are considered a first line of immune defense restricted to vertebrates. In this issue of Cell Host & Microbe, Smith et al. (2016) demonstrate that mammalian interferon γ activates an antimicrobial response within ticks feeding on blood. The study suggests that arthropods have a parallel interferon-like defense system.

  1. A promoter-level mammalian expression atlas.

    PubMed

    Forrest, Alistair R R; Kawaji, Hideya; Rehli, Michael; Baillie, J Kenneth; de Hoon, Michiel J L; Haberle, Vanja; Lassmann, Timo; Kulakovskiy, Ivan V; Lizio, Marina; Itoh, Masayoshi; Andersson, Robin; Mungall, Christopher J; Meehan, Terrence F; Schmeier, Sebastian; Bertin, Nicolas; Jørgensen, Mette; Dimont, Emmanuel; Arner, Erik; Schmidl, Christian; Schaefer, Ulf; Medvedeva, Yulia A; Plessy, Charles; Vitezic, Morana; Severin, Jessica; Semple, Colin A; Ishizu, Yuri; Young, Robert S; Francescatto, Margherita; Alam, Intikhab; Albanese, Davide; Altschuler, Gabriel M; Arakawa, Takahiro; Archer, John A C; Arner, Peter; Babina, Magda; Rennie, Sarah; Balwierz, Piotr J; Beckhouse, Anthony G; Pradhan-Bhatt, Swati; Blake, Judith A; Blumenthal, Antje; Bodega, Beatrice; Bonetti, Alessandro; Briggs, James; Brombacher, Frank; Burroughs, A Maxwell; Califano, Andrea; Cannistraci, Carlo V; Carbajo, Daniel; Chen, Yun; Chierici, Marco; Ciani, Yari; Clevers, Hans C; Dalla, Emiliano; Davis, Carrie A; Detmar, Michael; Diehl, Alexander D; Dohi, Taeko; Drabløs, Finn; Edge, Albert S B; Edinger, Matthias; Ekwall, Karl; Endoh, Mitsuhiro; Enomoto, Hideki; Fagiolini, Michela; Fairbairn, Lynsey; Fang, Hai; Farach-Carson, Mary C; Faulkner, Geoffrey J; Favorov, Alexander V; Fisher, Malcolm E; Frith, Martin C; Fujita, Rie; Fukuda, Shiro; Furlanello, Cesare; Furino, Masaaki; Furusawa, Jun-ichi; Geijtenbeek, Teunis B; Gibson, Andrew P; Gingeras, Thomas; Goldowitz, Daniel; Gough, Julian; Guhl, Sven; Guler, Reto; Gustincich, Stefano; Ha, Thomas J; Hamaguchi, Masahide; Hara, Mitsuko; Harbers, Matthias; Harshbarger, Jayson; Hasegawa, Akira; Hasegawa, Yuki; Hashimoto, Takehiro; Herlyn, Meenhard; Hitchens, Kelly J; Ho Sui, Shannan J; Hofmann, Oliver M; Hoof, Ilka; Hori, Furni; Huminiecki, Lukasz; Iida, Kei; Ikawa, Tomokatsu; Jankovic, Boris R; Jia, Hui; Joshi, Anagha; Jurman, Giuseppe; Kaczkowski, Bogumil; Kai, Chieko; Kaida, Kaoru; Kaiho, Ai; Kajiyama, Kazuhiro; Kanamori-Katayama, Mutsumi; Kasianov, Artem S; Kasukawa, Takeya; Katayama, Shintaro; Kato, Sachi; Kawaguchi, Shuji; Kawamoto, Hiroshi; Kawamura, Yuki I; Kawashima, Tsugumi; Kempfle, Judith S; Kenna, Tony J; Kere, Juha; Khachigian, Levon M; Kitamura, Toshio; Klinken, S Peter; Knox, Alan J; Kojima, Miki; Kojima, Soichi; Kondo, Naoto; Koseki, Haruhiko; Koyasu, Shigeo; Krampitz, Sarah; Kubosaki, Atsutaka; Kwon, Andrew T; Laros, Jeroen F J; Lee, Weonju; Lennartsson, Andreas; Li, Kang; Lilje, Berit; Lipovich, Leonard; Mackay-Sim, Alan; Manabe, Ri-ichiroh; Mar, Jessica C; Marchand, Benoit; Mathelier, Anthony; Mejhert, Niklas; Meynert, Alison; Mizuno, Yosuke; de Lima Morais, David A; Morikawa, Hiromasa; Morimoto, Mitsuru; Moro, Kazuyo; Motakis, Efthymios; Motohashi, Hozumi; Mummery, Christine L; Murata, Mitsuyoshi; Nagao-Sato, Sayaka; Nakachi, Yutaka; Nakahara, Fumio; Nakamura, Toshiyuki; Nakamura, Yukio; Nakazato, Kenichi; van Nimwegen, Erik; Ninomiya, Noriko; Nishiyori, Hiromi; Noma, Shohei; Noma, Shohei; Noazaki, Tadasuke; Ogishima, Soichi; Ohkura, Naganari; Ohimiya, Hiroko; Ohno, Hiroshi; Ohshima, Mitsuhiro; Okada-Hatakeyama, Mariko; Okazaki, Yasushi; Orlando, Valerio; Ovchinnikov, Dmitry A; Pain, Arnab; Passier, Robert; Patrikakis, Margaret; Persson, Helena; Piazza, Silvano; Prendergast, James G D; Rackham, Owen J L; Ramilowski, Jordan A; Rashid, Mamoon; Ravasi, Timothy; Rizzu, Patrizia; Roncador, Marco; Roy, Sugata; Rye, Morten B; Saijyo, Eri; Sajantila, Antti; Saka, Akiko; Sakaguchi, Shimon; Sakai, Mizuho; Sato, Hiroki; Savvi, Suzana; Saxena, Alka; Schneider, Claudio; Schultes, Erik A; Schulze-Tanzil, Gundula G; Schwegmann, Anita; Sengstag, Thierry; Sheng, Guojun; Shimoji, Hisashi; Shimoni, Yishai; Shin, Jay W; Simon, Christophe; Sugiyama, Daisuke; Sugiyama, Takaai; Suzuki, Masanori; Suzuki, Naoko; Swoboda, Rolf K; 't Hoen, Peter A C; Tagami, Michihira; Takahashi, Naoko; Takai, Jun; Tanaka, Hiroshi; Tatsukawa, Hideki; Tatum, Zuotian; Thompson, Mark; Toyodo, Hiroo; Toyoda, Tetsuro; Valen, Elvind; van de Wetering, Marc; van den Berg, Linda M; Verado, Roberto; Vijayan, Dipti; Vorontsov, Ilya E; Wasserman, Wyeth W; Watanabe, Shoko; Wells, Christine A; Winteringham, Louise N; Wolvetang, Ernst; Wood, Emily J; Yamaguchi, Yoko; Yamamoto, Masayuki; Yoneda, Misako; Yonekura, Yohei; Yoshida, Shigehiro; Zabierowski, Susan E; Zhang, Peter G; Zhao, Xiaobei; Zucchelli, Silvia; Summers, Kim M; Suzuki, Harukazu; Daub, Carsten O; Kawai, Jun; Heutink, Peter; Hide, Winston; Freeman, Tom C; Lenhard, Boris; Bajic, Vladimir B; Taylor, Martin S; Makeev, Vsevolod J; Sandelin, Albin; Hume, David A; Carninci, Piero; Hayashizaki, Yoshihide

    2014-03-27

    Regulated transcription controls the diversity, developmental pathways and spatial organization of the hundreds of cell types that make up a mammal. Using single-molecule cDNA sequencing, we mapped transcription start sites (TSSs) and their usage in human and mouse primary cells, cell lines and tissues to produce a comprehensive overview of mammalian gene expression across the human body. We find that few genes are truly 'housekeeping', whereas many mammalian promoters are composite entities composed of several closely separated TSSs, with independent cell-type-specific expression profiles. TSSs specific to different cell types evolve at different rates, whereas promoters of broadly expressed genes are the most conserved. Promoter-based expression analysis reveals key transcription factors defining cell states and links them to binding-site motifs. The functions of identified novel transcripts can be predicted by coexpression and sample ontology enrichment analyses. The functional annotation of the mammalian genome 5 (FANTOM5) project provides comprehensive expression profiles and functional annotation of mammalian cell-type-specific transcriptomes with wide applications in biomedical research.

  2. The life history of retrocopies illuminates the evolution of new mammalian genes.

    PubMed

    Carelli, Francesco Nicola; Hayakawa, Takashi; Go, Yasuhiro; Imai, Hiroo; Warnefors, Maria; Kaessmann, Henrik

    2016-03-01

    New genes contribute substantially to adaptive evolutionary innovation, but the functional evolution of new mammalian genes has been little explored at a broad scale. Previous work established mRNA-derived gene duplicates, known as retrocopies, as models for the study of new gene origination. Here we combine mammalian transcriptomic and epigenomic data to unveil the processes underlying the evolution of stripped-down retrocopies into complex new genes. We show that although some robustly expressed retrocopies are transcribed from preexisting promoters, most evolved new promoters from scratch or recruited proto-promoters in their genomic vicinity. In particular, many retrocopy promoters emerged from ancestral enhancers (or bivalent regulatory elements) or are located in CpG islands not associated with other genes. We detected 88-280 selectively preserved retrocopies per mammalian species, illustrating that these mechanisms facilitated the birth of many functional retrogenes during mammalian evolution. The regulatory evolution of originally monoexonic retrocopies was frequently accompanied by exon gain, which facilitated co-option of distant promoters and allowed expression of alternative isoforms. While young retrogenes are often initially expressed in the testis, increased regulatory and structural complexities allowed retrogenes to functionally diversify and evolve somatic organ functions, sometimes as complex as those of their parents. Thus, some retrogenes evolved the capacity to temporarily substitute for their parents during the process of male meiotic X inactivation, while others rendered parental functions superfluous, allowing for parental gene loss. Overall, our reconstruction of the "life history" of mammalian retrogenes highlights retroposition as a general model for understanding new gene birth and functional evolution.

  3. The life history of retrocopies illuminates the evolution of new mammalian genes

    PubMed Central

    Carelli, Francesco Nicola; Hayakawa, Takashi; Go, Yasuhiro; Imai, Hiroo; Warnefors, Maria; Kaessmann, Henrik

    2016-01-01

    New genes contribute substantially to adaptive evolutionary innovation, but the functional evolution of new mammalian genes has been little explored at a broad scale. Previous work established mRNA-derived gene duplicates, known as retrocopies, as models for the study of new gene origination. Here we combine mammalian transcriptomic and epigenomic data to unveil the processes underlying the evolution of stripped-down retrocopies into complex new genes. We show that although some robustly expressed retrocopies are transcribed from preexisting promoters, most evolved new promoters from scratch or recruited proto-promoters in their genomic vicinity. In particular, many retrocopy promoters emerged from ancestral enhancers (or bivalent regulatory elements) or are located in CpG islands not associated with other genes. We detected 88–280 selectively preserved retrocopies per mammalian species, illustrating that these mechanisms facilitated the birth of many functional retrogenes during mammalian evolution. The regulatory evolution of originally monoexonic retrocopies was frequently accompanied by exon gain, which facilitated co-option of distant promoters and allowed expression of alternative isoforms. While young retrogenes are often initially expressed in the testis, increased regulatory and structural complexities allowed retrogenes to functionally diversify and evolve somatic organ functions, sometimes as complex as those of their parents. Thus, some retrogenes evolved the capacity to temporarily substitute for their parents during the process of male meiotic X inactivation, while others rendered parental functions superfluous, allowing for parental gene loss. Overall, our reconstruction of the “life history” of mammalian retrogenes highlights retroposition as a general model for understanding new gene birth and functional evolution. PMID:26728716

  4. Surgical reconstruction of TMJ.

    PubMed

    Ramil Novo, V M; Garcìa, A G; Berini Aytès, L; Escoda, C G

    1999-01-01

    Certain situations and pathological processes that arise with temporomandibular joint destruction can only be resolved with surgical reconstructive procedures in order to attempt a functional and anatomical rehabilitation of this joint. Many of these situations can be surgically treated with the patient's own autologous tissues. However, in some patients reconstruction is complex and the use of autologous tissues is unadvisable whereas reconstruction utilizing alloplastic materials may be an appropriate alternative. The following report describes 4 clinical cases in which autologous grafts or Christensen joint prosthesis are employed in temporomandibular joint reconstruction.

  5. Physical mapping of a large plant genome using global high-information-content-fingerprinting: the distal region of the wheat ancestor Aegilops tauschii chromosome 3DS.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Physical maps employing libraries of bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) clones are essential for comparative genomics and sequencing of large and repetitive genomes such as those of the hexaploid bread wheat. The diploid ancestor of wheat genome, Aegilops tauschii, is used as a resource for wheat...

  6. Genome sequence and annotation of Trichoderma parareesei, the ancestor of the cellulase producer Trichoderma reesei

    SciTech Connect

    Yang, Dongqing; Pomraning, Kyle; Kopchinskiy, Alexey; Karimi, Aghcheh Razieh; Atanasova, Lea; Chenthamara, Komal; Baker, Scott E.; Zhang, Ruifu; Shen, Qirong; Freitag, Michael; Kubicek, Christian P.; Druzhinina, Irina S.

    2015-08-13

    The filamentous fungus Trichoderma parareesei is the asexually reproducing ancestor of Trichoderma reesei, the holomorphic industrial producer of cellulase and hemicellulase. Here, we present the genome sequence of the T. parareesei type strain CBS 125925, which contains genes for 9,318 proteins.

  7. Genetic diversity in morphological characters and phenolic acids content resulting from an interspecific cross between eggplant (Solanum melongena) and its wild ancestor (S. incanum)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Solanum incanum, the wild ancestor of eggplant (S. melongena) has been considered as a source of variation for high phenolic acids content in breeding programs aimed at improving the functional quality of eggplant. We have evaluated the morphological and phenolic acids content in an interspecific fa...

  8. Sulfated polysaccharides from marine sponges (Porifera): an ancestor cell-cell adhesion event based on the carbohydrate-carbohydrate interaction.

    PubMed

    Vilanova, Eduardo; Coutinho, Cristiano C; Mourão, Paulo A S

    2009-08-01

    Marine sponges (Porifera) are ancient and simple eumetazoans. They constitute key organisms in the evolution from unicellular to multicellular animals. We now demonstrated that pure sulfated polysaccharides from marine sponges are responsible for the species-specific cell-cell interaction in these invertebrates. This conclusion was based on the following observations: (1) each species of marine sponge has a single population of sulfated polysaccharide, which differ among the species in their sugar composition and sulfate content; (2) sulfated polysaccharides from sponge interact with each other in a species-specific way, as indicated by an affinity chromatography assay, and this interaction requires calcium; (3) homologous, but not heterologous, sulfated polysaccharide inhibits aggregation of dissociated sponge cells; (4) we also observed a parallel between synthesis of the sulfated polysaccharide and formation of large aggregates of sponge cells, known as primmorphs. Once aggregation reached a plateau, the demand for the de novo synthesis of sulfated polysaccharides ceased. Heparin can mimic the homologous sulfated polysaccharide on the in vitro interaction and also as an inhibitor of aggregation of the dissociated sponge cells. However, this observation is not relevant for the biology of the sponge since heparin is not found in the invertebrate. In conclusion, marine sponges display an ancestor event of cell-cell adhesion, based on the calcium-dependent carbohydrate-carbohydrate interaction.

  9. Wild Mallards Have More “Goose-Like” Bills Than Their Ancestors: A Case of Anthropogenic Influence?

    PubMed Central

    Söderquist, Pär; Norrström, Joanna; Elmberg, Johan; Guillemain, Matthieu; Gunnarsson, Gunnar

    2014-01-01

    Wild populations of the world’s most common dabbling duck, the mallard (Anas platyrhynchos), run the risk of genetic introgression by farmed conspecifics released for hunting purposes. We tested whether bill morphology of free-living birds has changed since large-scale releases of farmed mallards started. Three groups of mallards from Sweden, Norway and Finland were compared: historical wild (before large-scale releases started), present-day wild, and present-day farmed. Higher density of bill lamellae was observed in historical wild mallards (only males). Farmed mallards had wider bills than present-day and historical wild ones. Present-day wild and farmed mallards also had higher and shorter bills than historical wild mallards. Present-day mallards thus tend to have more “goose-like” bills (wider, higher, and shorter) than their ancestors. Our study suggests that surviving released mallards affect morphological traits in wild population by introgression. We discuss how such anthropogenic impact may lead to a maladapted and genetically compromised wild mallard population. Our study system has bearing on other taxa where large-scale releases of conspecifics with ‘alien genes’ may cause a cryptic invasive process that nevertheless has fitness consequences for individual birds. PMID:25514789

  10. Inheritance and diversification of symbiotic trichonymphid flagellates from a common ancestor of termites and the cockroach Cryptocercus.

    PubMed

    Ohkuma, Moriya; Noda, Satoko; Hongoh, Yuichi; Nalepa, Christine A; Inoue, Tetsushi

    2009-01-22

    Cryptocercus cockroaches and lower termites harbour obligate, diverse and unique symbiotic cellulolytic flagellates in their hindgut that are considered critical in the development of social behaviour in their hosts. However, there has been controversy concerning the origin of these symbiotic flagellates. Here, molecular sequences encoding small subunit rRNA and glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase were identified in the symbiotic flagellates of the order Trichonymphida (phylum Parabasalia) in the gut of Cryptocercus punctulatus and compared phylogenetically to the corresponding species in termites. In each of the monophyletic lineages that represent family-level groups in Trichonymphida, the symbionts of Cryptocercus were robustly sister to those of termites. Together with the recent evidence for the sister-group relationship of the host insects, this first comprehensive study comparing symbiont molecular phylogeny strongly suggests that a set of symbiotic flagellates representative of extant diversity was already established in an ancestor common to Cryptocercus and termites, was vertically transmitted to their offspring, and subsequently became diversified to distinct levels, depending on both the host and the symbiont lineages.

  11. RSL Class I Genes Controlled the Development of Epidermal Structures in the Common Ancestor of Land Plants.

    PubMed

    Proust, Hélène; Honkanen, Suvi; Jones, Victor A S; Morieri, Giulia; Prescott, Helen; Kelly, Steve; Ishizaki, Kimitsune; Kohchi, Takayuki; Dolan, Liam

    2016-01-11

    The colonization of the land by plants, sometime before 470 million years ago, was accompanied by the evolution tissue systems [1-3]. Specialized structures with diverse functions-from nutrient acquisition to reproduction-derived from single cells in the outermost layer (epidermis) were important sources of morphological innovation at this time [2, 4, 5]. In extant plants, these structures may be unicellular extensions, such as root hairs or rhizoids [6-9], or multicellular structures, such as asexual propagules or secretory hairs (papillae) [10-12]. Here, we show that a ROOTHAIR DEFECTIVE SIX-LIKE (RSL) class I basic helix-loop-helix transcription factor positively regulates the development of the unicellular and multicellular structures that develop from individual cells that expand out of the epidermal plane of the liverwort Marchantia polymorpha; mutants that lack MpRSL1 function do not develop rhizoids, slime papillae, mucilage papillae, or gemmae. Furthermore, we discovered that RSL class I genes are also required for the development of multicellular axillary hairs on the gametophyte of the moss Physcomitrella patens. Because class I RSL proteins also control the development of rhizoids in mosses and root hairs in angiosperms [13, 14], these data demonstrate that the function of RSL class I genes was to control the development of structures derived from single epidermal cells in the common ancestor of the land plants. Class I RSL genes therefore controlled the generation of adaptive morphological diversity as plants colonized the land from the water.

  12. Transcriptome analysis in Coffea eugenioides, an Arabica coffee ancestor, reveals differentially expressed genes in leaves and fruits.

    PubMed

    Yuyama, Priscila Mary; Reis Júnior, Osvaldo; Ivamoto, Suzana Tiemi; Domingues, Douglas Silva; Carazzolle, Marcelo Falsarella; Pereira, Gonçalo Amarante Guimarães; Charmetant, Pierre; Leroy, Thierry; Pereira, Luiz Filipe Protasio

    2016-02-01

    Studies in diploid parental species of polyploid plants are important to understand their contributions to the formation of plant and species evolution. Coffea eugenioides is a diploid species that is considered to be an ancestor of allopolyploid Coffea arabica together with Coffea canephora. Despite its importance in the evolutionary history of the main economic species of coffee, no study has focused on C. eugenioides molecular genetics. RNA-seq creates the possibility to generate reference transcriptomes and identify coding genes and potential candidates related to important agronomic traits. Therefore, the main objectives were to obtain a global overview of transcriptionally active genes in this species using next-generation sequencing and to analyze specific genes that were highly expressed in leaves and fruits with potential exploratory characteristics for breeding and understanding the evolutionary biology of coffee. A de novo assembly generated 36,935 contigs that were annotated using eight databases. We observed a total of ~5000 differentially expressed genes between leaves and fruits. Several genes exclusively expressed in fruits did not exhibit similarities with sequences in any database. We selected ten differentially expressed unigenes in leaves and fruits to evaluate transcriptional profiles using qPCR. Our study provides the first gene catalog for C. eugenioides and enhances the knowledge concerning the mechanisms involved in the C. arabica homeologous. Furthermore, this work will open new avenues for studies into specific genes and pathways in this species, especially related to fruit, and our data have potential value in assisted breeding applications.

  13. Evolution from a respiratory ancestor to fill syntrophic and fermentative niches: comparative fenomics of six Geobacteraceae species

    PubMed Central

    Butler, Jessica E; Young, Nelson D; Lovley, Derek R

    2009-01-01

    Background The anaerobic degradation of organic matter in natural environments, and the biotechnical use of anaerobes in energy production and remediation of subsurface environments, both require the cooperative activity of a diversity of microorganisms in different metabolic niches. The Geobacteraceae family contains members with three important anaerobic metabolisms: fermentation, syntrophic degradation of fermentation intermediates, and anaerobic respiration. Results In order to learn more about the evolution of anaerobic microbial communities, the genome sequences of six Geobacteraceae species were analyzed. The results indicate that the last common Geobacteraceae ancestor contained sufficient genes for anaerobic respiration, completely oxidizing organic compounds with the reduction of external electron acceptors, features that are still retained in modern Geobacter and Desulfuromonas species. Evolution of specialization for fermentative growth arose twice, via distinct lateral gene transfer events, in Pelobacter carbinolicus and Pelobacter propionicus. Furthermore, P. carbinolicus gained hydrogenase genes and genes for ferredoxin reduction that appear to permit syntrophic growth via hydrogen production. The gain of new physiological capabilities in the Pelobacter species were accompanied by the loss of several key genes necessary for the complete oxidation of organic compounds and the genes for the c-type cytochromes required for extracellular electron transfer. Conclusion The results suggest that Pelobacter species evolved parallel strategies to enhance their ability to compete in environments in which electron acceptors for anaerobic respiration were limiting. More generally, these results demonstrate how relatively few gene changes can dramatically transform metabolic capabilities and expand the range of environments in which microorganisms can compete. PMID:19284579

  14. The cult of amphioxus in German Darwinism; or, our gelatinous ancestors in Naples' blue and balmy bay.

    PubMed

    Hopwood, Nick

    2015-01-01

    Biologists having rediscovered amphioxus, also known as the lancelet or Branchiostoma, it is time to reassess its place in early Darwinist debates over vertebrate origins. While the advent of the ascidian-amphioxus theory and challenges from various competitors have been, documented, this article offers a richer account of the public appeal of amphioxus as a primitive ancestor. The focus is on how the 'German Darwin' Ernst Haeckel persuaded general magazine and newspaper readers to revere this "flesh of our flesh and blood of our blood", and especially on Das neue Laienbrevier des Haeckelismus (The new lay breviary of Haeckelism) by Moritz Reymond with cartoons by Fritz Steub. From the late 1870s these successful little books of verse introduced the Neapolitan discoveries that made the animal's name and satirized Haeckel's rise as high priest of its cult. One song is reproduced and translated here, with a contemporary "imitation" by the Canadian palaeontologist Edward John Chapman, and extracts from others. Predating the American "It's a long way from amphioxus" by decades, these rhymes dramatize neglected 'species politics' of Darwinism and highlight the roles of humour in negotiating evolution.

  15. Genealogical correspondence of a forebrain centre implies an executive brain in the protostome–deuterostome bilaterian ancestor

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Orthologous genes involved in the formation of proteins associated with memory acquisition are similarly expressed in forebrain centres that exhibit similar cognitive properties. These proteins include cAMP-dependent protein kinase A catalytic subunit (PKA-Cα) and phosphorylated Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (pCaMKII), both required for long-term memory formation which is enriched in rodent hippocampus and insect mushroom bodies, both implicated in allocentric memory and both possessing corresponding neuronal architectures. Antibodies against these proteins resolve forebrain centres, or their equivalents, having the same ground pattern of neuronal organization in species across five phyla. The ground pattern is defined by olfactory or chemosensory afferents supplying systems of parallel fibres of intrinsic neurons intersected by orthogonal domains of afferent and efferent arborizations with local interneurons providing feedback loops. The totality of shared characters implies a deep origin in the protostome–deuterostome bilaterian ancestor of elements of a learning and memory circuit. Proxies for such an ancestral taxon are simple extant bilaterians, particularly acoels that express PKA-Cα and pCaMKII in discrete anterior domains that can be properly referred to as brains. PMID:26598732

  16. Helium Ion Microscopy Visualizes Lipid Nanodomains in Mammalian Cells.

    PubMed

    Schürmann, Matthias; Frese, Natalie; Beyer, André; Heimann, Peter; Widera, Darius; Mönkemöller, Viola; Huser, Thomas; Kaltschmidt, Barbara; Kaltschmidt, Christian; Gölzhäuser, Armin

    2015-11-18

    Cell membranes are composed of 2D bilayers of amphipathic lipids, which allow a lateral movement of the respective membrane components. These components are arranged in an inhomogeneous manner as transient micro- and nanodomains, which are believed to be crucially involved in the regulation of signal transduction pathways in mammalian cells. Because of their small size (diameter 10-200 nm), membrane nanodomains cannot be directly imaged using conventional light microscopy. Here, direct visualization of cell membrane nanodomains by helium ion microscopy (HIM) is presented. It is shown that HIM is capable to image biological specimens without any conductive coating and that HIM images clearly allow the identification of nanodomains in the ultrastructure of membranes with 1.5 nm resolution. The shape of these nanodomains is preserved by fixation of the surrounding unsaturated fatty acids while saturated fatty acids inside the nanodomains are selectively removed. Atomic force microscopy, fluorescence microscopy, 3D structured illumination microscopy, and direct stochastic optical reconstruction microscopy provide additional evidence that the structures in the HIM images of cell membranes originate from membrane nanodomains. The nanodomains observed by HIM have an average diameter of 20 nm and are densely arranged with a minimal nearest neighbor distance of ≈ 15 nm.

  17. The Calmodulin-Binding, Short Linear Motif, NSCaTE Is Conserved in L-Type Channel Ancestors of Vertebrate Cav1.2 and Cav1.3 Channels

    PubMed Central

    Taiakina, Valentina; Boone, Adrienne N.; Fux, Julia; Senatore, Adriano; Weber-Adrian, Danielle

    2013-01-01

    NSCaTE is a short linear motif of (xWxxx(I or L)xxxx), composed of residues with a high helix-forming propensity within a mostly disordered N-terminus that is conserved in L-type calcium channels from protostome invertebrates to humans. NSCaTE is an optional, lower affinity and calcium-sensitive binding site for calmodulin (CaM) which competes for CaM binding with a more ancient, C-terminal IQ domain on L-type channels. CaM bound to N- and C- terminal tails serve as dual detectors to changing intracellular Ca2+ concentrations, promoting calcium-dependent inactivation of L-type calcium channels. NSCaTE is absent in some arthropod species, and is also lacking in vertebrate L-type isoforms, Cav1.1 and Cav1.4 channels. The pervasiveness of a methionine just downstream from NSCaTE suggests that L-type channels could generate alternative N-termini lacking NSCaTE through the choice of translational start sites. Long N-terminus with an NSCaTE motif in L-type calcium channel homolog LCav1 from pond snail Lymnaea stagnalis has a faster calcium-dependent inactivation than a shortened N-termini lacking NSCaTE. NSCaTE effects are present in low concentrations of internal buffer (0.5 mM EGTA), but disappears in high buffer conditions (10 mM EGTA). Snail and mammalian NSCaTE have an alpha-helical propensity upon binding Ca2+-CaM and can saturate both CaM N-terminal and C-terminal domains in the absence of a competing IQ motif. NSCaTE evolved in ancestors of the first animals with internal organs for promoting a more rapid, calcium-sensitive inactivation of L-type channels. PMID:23626724

  18. Speckle variance OCT imaging of the vasculature in live mammalian embryos

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sudheendran, N.; Syed, S. H.; Dickinson, M. E.; Larina, I. V.; Larin, K. V.

    2011-03-01

    Live imaging of normal and abnormal vascular development in mammalian embryos is important tool in embryonic research, which can potentially contribute to understanding, prevention and treatment of cardiovascular birth defects. Here, we used speckle variance analysis of swept source optical coherence tomography (OCT) data sets acquired from live mouse embryos to reconstruct the 3-D structure of the embryonic vasculature. Both Doppler OCT and speckle variance algorithms were used to reconstruct the vascular structure. The results demonstrates that speckle variance imaging provides more accurate representation of the vascular structure, as it is not sensitive to the blood flow direction, while the Doppler OCT imaging misses blood flow component perpendicular to the beam direction. These studies suggest that speckle variance imaging is a promising tool to study vascular development in cultured mouse embryos.

  19. An Ode to Ancestors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kallanian, Susanne

    2005-01-01

    The Fon live in the southern part of the People's Republic of Benin. They inhabit an area about the size of Connecticut. To this day, many Fon are farmers. They plant yams, corn, and cotton, and cultivate palm trees that produce palm oil. Ancient beliefs in spirits and natural powers (called vodun) that govern the world and provide a spiritual…

  20. Aping our ancestors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ennos, Roland

    2014-08-01

    Roland Ennos argues that the abilities of the great apes to cope in the dangerous mechanical environment of the forest canopy are part of the human species' intellectual inheritance and are intimately connected with our abilities as physicists.

  1. Commemorating the Ancestors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mack, Stevie; Williams, Kathleen

    2010-01-01

    The festivals of Mexico are renowned for their colorful decorations, energetic music, exuberant parades, and cultural significance. "Los Dias de los Muertos," the Days of the Dead, is no exception. Often misunderstood by those who live elsewhere, this festival commemorating the dead is one of Mexico's most important holidays. As Americans prepare…

  2. Reconstruction of Japanese Vowels.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Aoki, Haruo

    1972-01-01

    This paper discusses the relationship between linguistic reconstructions and their historical validity using the case of Old Japanese (8th century A.D.) vowels as an example. Reconstructions throughout the paper include only those cases in which the modern reflexes and phonological correspondences between two or more genetically related languages…

  3. Education for Reconstruction.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Phillips, David; And Others

    This report describes the main questions that various international agencies must address in order to reconstruct education in countries that have experienced crisis. "Crisis" is defined as war, natural disaster, and extreme political and economic upheaval. Many of the problems of educational reconstruction with which the Allies contended in…

  4. Potassium transport in the mammalian collecting duct.

    PubMed

    Muto, S

    2001-01-01

    The mammalian collecting duct plays a dominant role in regulating K(+) excretion by the nephron. The collecting duct exhibits axial and intrasegmental cell heterogeneity and is composed of at least two cell types: collecting duct cells (principal cells) and intercalated cells. Under normal circumstances, the collecting duct cell in the cortical collecting duct secretes K(+), whereas under K(+) depletion, the intercalated cell reabsorbs K(+). Assessment of the electrochemical driving forces and of membrane conductances for transcellular and paracellular electrolyte movement, the characterization of several ATPases, patch-clamp investigation, and cloning of the K(+) channel have provided important insights into the role of pumps and channels in those tubule cells that regulate K(+) secretion and reabsorption. This review summarizes K(+) transport properties in the mammalian collecting duct. Special emphasis is given to the mechanisms of how K(+) transport is regulated in the collecting duct.

  5. Mammalian Sperm Motility: Observation and Theory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gaffney, E. A.; Gadêlha, H.; Smith, D. J.; Blake, J. R.; Kirkman-Brown, J. C.

    2011-01-01

    Mammalian spermatozoa motility is a subject of growing importance because of rising human infertility and the possibility of improving animal breeding. We highlight opportunities for fluid and continuum dynamics to provide novel insights concerning the mechanics of these specialized cells, especially during their remarkable journey to the egg. The biological structure of the motile sperm appendage, the flagellum, is described and placed in the context of the mechanics underlying the migration of mammalian sperm through the numerous environments of the female reproductive tract. This process demands certain specific changes to flagellar movement and motility for which further mechanical insight would be valuable, although this requires improved modeling capabilities, particularly to increase our understanding of sperm progression in vivo. We summarize current theoretical studies, highlighting the synergistic combination of imaging and theory in exploring sperm motility, and discuss the challenges for future observational and theoretical studies in understanding the underlying mechanics.

  6. Synaptic Release at Mammalian Bipolar Cell Terminals

    PubMed Central

    Wan, Qun-Fang; Heidelberger, Ruth

    2011-01-01

    Bipolar cells play a vital role in the transfer of visual information across the vertebrate retina. The synaptic output of these neurons is regulated by factors that are extrinsic and intrinsic. Relatively little is known about the intrinsic factors that regulate neurotransmitter exocytosis. Much of what we know about intrinsic presynaptic mechanisms that regulate glutamate release has come from the study of the unusually large and accessible synaptic terminal of the goldfish rod-dominant bipolar cell, the Mb1 bipolar cell. However, over the past several years, examination of presynaptic mechanisms governing neurotransmitter release has been extended to the mammalian rod bipolar cell. In this review, we discuss the recent advances in our understanding of synaptic vesicle dynamics and neurotransmitter release in rodent rod bipolar cells and consider how these properties help shape the synaptic output of the mammalian retina. PMID:21272392

  7. Mammalian lipoxygenases and their biological relevance

    PubMed Central

    Kuhn, Hartmut; Banthiya, Swathi; van Leyen, Klaus

    2015-01-01

    Lipoxygenases (LOXs) form a heterogeneous class of lipid peroxidizing enzymes, which have been implicated in cell proliferation and differentiation but also in the pathogenesis of various diseases with major public health relevance. As other fatty acid dioxygenases LOX oxidize polyunsaturated fatty acids to their corresponding hydroperoxy derivatives, which are further transformed to bioactive lipid mediators (eicosanoids and related substances). On the other hand, lipoxygenases are key players in regulation of the cellular redox homeostasis, which is an important element in gene expression regulation. Although the first mammalian lipoxygenases were discovered 40 years ago and although the enzymes have been well characterized with respect to their structural and functional properties the biological roles of the different lipoxygenase isoforms are not completely understood. This review is aimed at summarizing the current knowledge on the physiological roles of different mammalian LOX-isoforms and their patho-physiological function in inflammatory, metabolic, hyperproliferative, neurodegenerative and infectious disorders. PMID:25316652

  8. Lactate Metabolism is Associated with Mammalian Mitochondria

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Ying-Jr; Mahieu, Nathaniel G.; Huang, Xiaojing; Singh, Manmilan; Crawford, Peter A; Johnson, Stephen L.; Gross, Richard W.; Schaefer, Jacob

    2016-01-01

    It is well established that lactate secreted by fermenting cells can be oxidized or used as a gluconeogenic substrate by other cells and tissues. Within the fermenting cell itself, however, it is generally assumed that lactate is produced to replenish NAD+ and then is secreted. Here we explored the possibility that cytosolic lactate is metabolized by the mitochondria of fermenting mammalian cells. We found that fermenting HeLa and H460 cells utilize exogenous lactate carbon to synthesize a large percentage of their lipids. With high-resolution mass spectrometry, we found that both 13C and 2-2H labels from enriched lactate enter the mitochondria. The lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) inhibitor oxamate decreased respiration of isolated mitochondria incubated in lactate, but not isolated mitochondria incubated in pyruvate. Additionally, transmission electron microscopy (TEM) showed that LDHB localizes to the mitochondria. Taken together, our results demonstrate a link between lactate metabolism and the mitochondria of fermenting mammalian cells. PMID:27618187

  9. Circadian aspects of mammalian parturition: a review.

    PubMed

    Olcese, James

    2012-02-05

    The identification of circadian clocks in endocrine tissues has added considerable depth and complexity to our understanding of their physiology. A growing body of research reveals circadian clock gene expression in the uterus of non-pregnant and pregnant rodents. This review will focus on the mammalian uterus and its rhythmicity, particularly as it pertains to the circadian timing of parturition. This key event in the reproductive axis shows dramatic species-specific differences in its circadian phase. It is proposed here that these differences in the phasing of mammalian parturition are likely a function of opposite uterine cell responses to humoral cues. The argument will be made that melatonin fulfills many of the criteria to serve as a circadian signal in the initiation of human parturition, including specific actions on uterine smooth muscle cells that are consistent with a role for this hormone in the circadian timing of parturition.

  10. Ricin trafficking in plant and mammalian cells.

    PubMed

    Lord, J Michael; Spooner, Robert A

    2011-07-01

    Ricin is a heterodimeric plant protein that is potently toxic to mammalian and many other eukaryotic cells. It is synthesized and stored in the endosperm cells of maturing Ricinus communis seeds (castor beans). The ricin family has two major members, both, lectins, collectively known as Ricinus communis agglutinin ll (ricin) and Ricinus communis agglutinin l (RCA). These proteins are stored in vacuoles within the endosperm cells of mature Ricinus seeds and they are rapidly broken down by hydrolysis during the early stages of post-germinative growth. Both ricin and RCA traffic within the plant cell from their site of synthesis to the storage vacuoles, and when they intoxicate mammalian cells they traffic from outside the cell to their site of action. In this review we will consider both of these trafficking routes.

  11. Plate tectonics of virus shell assembly and reorganization in phage φ8, a distant relative of mammalian reoviruses.

    PubMed

    El Omari, Kamel; Sutton, Geoff; Ravantti, Janne J; Zhang, Hanwen; Walter, Thomas S; Grimes, Jonathan M; Bamford, Dennis H; Stuart, David I; Mancini, Erika J

    2013-08-06

    The hallmark of a virus is its capsid, which harbors the viral genome and is formed from protein subunits, which assemble following precise geometric rules. dsRNA viruses use an unusual protein multiplicity (120 copies) to form their closed capsids. We have determined the atomic structure of the capsid protein (P1) from the dsRNA cystovirus Φ8. In the crystal P1 forms pentamers, very similar in shape to facets of empty procapsids, suggesting an unexpected assembly pathway that proceeds via a pentameric intermediate. Unlike the elongated proteins used by dsRNA mammalian reoviruses, P1 has a compact trapezoid-like shape and a distinct arrangement in the shell, with two near-identical conformers in nonequivalent structural environments. Nevertheless, structural similarity with the analogous protein from the mammalian viruses suggests a common ancestor. The unusual shape of the molecule may facilitate dramatic capsid expansion during phage maturation, allowing P1 to switch interaction interfaces to provide capsid plasticity.

  12. Phylogenomic and biogeographic reconstruction of the Trichinella complex

    PubMed Central

    Korhonen, Pasi K.; Pozio, Edoardo; La Rosa, Giuseppe; Chang, Bill C. H.; Koehler, Anson V.; Hoberg, Eric P.; Boag, Peter R.; Tan, Patrick; Jex, Aaron R.; Hofmann, Andreas; Sternberg, Paul W.; Young, Neil D.; Gasser, Robin B.

    2016-01-01

    Trichinellosis is a globally important food-borne parasitic disease of humans caused by roundworms of the Trichinella complex. Extensive biological diversity is reflected in substantial ecological and genetic variability within and among Trichinella taxa, and major controversy surrounds the systematics of this complex. Here we report the sequencing and assembly of 16 draft genomes representing all 12 recognized Trichinella species and genotypes, define protein-coding gene sets and assess genetic differences among these taxa. Using thousands of shared single-copy orthologous gene sequences, we fully reconstruct, for the first time, a phylogeny and biogeography for the Trichinella complex, and show that encapsulated and non-encapsulated Trichinella taxa diverged from their most recent common ancestor ∼21 million years ago (mya), with taxon diversifications commencing ∼10−7 mya. PMID:26830005

  13. Reconstructing the evolution of laughter in great apes and humans.

    PubMed

    Davila Ross, Marina; Owren, Michael J; Zimmermann, Elke

    2009-07-14

    Human emotional expressions, such as laughter, are argued to have their origins in ancestral nonhuman primate displays. To test this hypothesis, the current work examined the acoustics of tickle-induced vocalizations from infant and juvenile orangutans, gorillas, chimpanzees, and bonobos, as well as tickle-induced laughter produced by human infants. Resulting acoustic data were then coded as character states and submitted to quantitative phylogenetic analysis. Acoustic outcomes revealed both important similarities and differences among the five species. Furthermore, phylogenetic trees reconstructed from the acoustic data matched the well-established trees based on comparative genetics. Taken together, the results provide strong evidence that tickling-induced laughter is homologous in great apes and humans and support the more general postulation of phylogenetic continuity from nonhuman displays to human emotional expressions. Findings also show that distinctively human laughter characteristics such as predominantly regular, stable voicing and consistently egressive airflow are nonetheless traceable to characteristics of shared ancestors with great apes.

  14. Structure and function of mammalian cilia.

    PubMed

    Satir, Peter; Christensen, Søren T

    2008-06-01

    In the past half century, beginning with electron microscopic studies of 9 + 2 motile and 9 + 0 primary cilia, novel insights have been obtained regarding the structure and function of mammalian cilia. All cilia can now be viewed as sensory cellular antennae that coordinate a large number of cellular signaling pathways, sometimes coupling the signaling to ciliary motility or alternatively to cell division and differentiation. This view has had unanticipated consequences for our understanding of developmental processes and human disease.

  15. Basic techniques in mammalian cell tissue culture.

    PubMed

    Phelan, Katy; May, Kristin M

    2015-03-02

    Cultured mammalian cells are used extensively in cell biology studies. It requires a number of special skills in order to be able to preserve the structure, function, behavior, and biology of the cells in culture. This unit describes the basic skills required to maintain and preserve cell cultures: maintaining aseptic technique, preparing media with the appropriate characteristics, passaging, freezing and storage, recovering frozen stocks, and counting viable cells.

  16. Comparative analysis of mammalian Y chromosomes illuminates ancestral structure and lineage-specific evolution

    PubMed Central

    Li, Gang; Davis, Brian W.; Raudsepp, Terje; Pearks Wilkerson, Alison J.; Mason, Victor C.; Ferguson-Smith, Malcolm; O'Brien, Patricia C.; Waters, Paul D.; Murphy, William J.

    2013-01-01

    Although more than thirty mammalian genomes have been sequenced to draft quality, very few of these include the Y chromosome. This has limited our understanding of the evolutionary dynamics of gene persistence and loss, our ability to identify conserved regulatory elements, as well our knowledge of the extent to which different types of selection act to maintain genes within this unique genomic environment. Here, we present the first MSY (male-specific region of the Y chromosome) sequences from two carnivores, the domestic dog and cat. By combining these with other available MSY data, our multiordinal comparison allows for the first accounting of levels of selection constraining the evolution of eutherian Y chromosomes. Despite gene gain and loss across the phylogeny, we show the eutherian ancestor retained a core set of 17 MSY genes, most being constrained by negative selection for nearly 100 million years. The X-degenerate and ampliconic gene classes are partitioned into distinct chromosomal domains in most mammals, but were radically restructured on the human lineage. We identified multiple conserved noncoding elements that potentially regulate eutherian MSY genes. The acquisition of novel ampliconic gene families was accompanied by signatures of positive selection and has differentially impacted the degeneration and expansion of MSY gene repertoires in different species. PMID:23788650

  17. Epigenetic Regulation of the Mammalian Cell

    PubMed Central

    Baverstock, Keith; Rönkkö, Mauno

    2008-01-01

    Background Understanding how mammalian cells are regulated epigenetically to express phenotype is a priority. The cellular phenotypic transition, induced by ionising radiation, from a normal cell to the genomic instability phenotype, where the ability to replicate the genotype accurately is compromised, illustrates important features of epigenetic regulation. Based on this phenomenon and earlier work we propose a model to describe the mammalian cell as a self assembled open system operating in an environment that includes its genotype, neighbouring cells and beyond. Phenotype is represented by high dimensional attractors, evolutionarily conditioned for stability and robustness and contingent on rules of engagement between gene products encoded in the genetic network. Methodology/Findings We describe how this system functions and note the indeterminacy and fluidity of its internal workings which place it in the logical reasoning framework of predicative logic. We find that the hypothesis is supported by evidence from cell and molecular biology. Conclusions Epigenetic regulation and memory are fundamentally physical, as opposed to chemical, processes and the transition to genomic instability is an important feature of mammalian cells with probable fundamental relevance to speciation and carcinogenesis. A source of evolutionarily selectable variation, in terms of the rules of engagement between gene products, is seen as more likely to have greater prominence than genetic variation in an evolutionary context. As this epigenetic variation is based on attractor states phenotypic changes are not gradual; a phenotypic transition can involve the changed contribution of several gene products in a single step. PMID:18523589

  18. Some principles of regeneration in mammalian systems.

    PubMed

    Carlson, Bruce M

    2005-11-01

    This article presents some general principles underlying regenerative phenomena in vertebrates, starting with the epimorphic regeneration of the amphibian limb and continuing with tissue and organ regeneration in mammals. Epimorphic regeneration following limb amputation involves wound healing, followed shortly by a phase of dedifferentiation that leads to the formation of a regeneration blastema. Up to the point of blastema formation, dedifferentiation is guided by unique regenerative pathways, but the overall developmental controls underlying limb formation from the blastema generally recapitulate those of embryonic limb development. Damaged mammalian tissues do not form a blastema. At the cellular level, differentiation follows a pattern close to that seen in the embryo, but at the level of the tissue and organ, regeneration is strongly influenced by conditions inherent in the local environment. In some mammalian systems, such as the liver, parenchymal cells contribute progeny to the regenerate. In others, e.g., skeletal muscle and bone, tissue-specific progenitor cells constitute the main source of regenerating cells. The substrate on which regeneration occurs plays a very important role in determining the course of regeneration. Epimorphic regeneration usually produces an exact replica of the structure that was lost, but in mammalian tissue regeneration the form of the regenerate is largely determined by the mechanical environment acting on the regenerating tissue, and it is normally an imperfect replica of the original. In organ hypertophy, such as that occurring after hepatic resection, the remaining liver mass enlarges, but there is no attempt to restore the original form.

  19. Aneuploidy in mammalian somatic cells in vivo.

    PubMed

    Cimino, M C; Tice, R R; Liang, J C

    1986-01-01

    Aneuploidy is an important potential source of human disease and of reproductive failure. Nevertheless, the ability of chemical agents to induce aneuploidy has been investigated only sporadically in intact (whole-animal) mammalian systems. A search of the available literature from the EMCT Aneuploidy File (for years 1970-1983) provided 112 papers that dealt with aneuploidy in mammalian somatic cells in vivo. 59 of these papers did not meet minimal criteria for analysis and were rejected from subsequent review. Of the remaining 53 papers that dealt with aneuploidy induction by chemical agents in mammalian somatic cells in vivo, only 3 (6%) contained data that were considered to be supported conclusively by adequate study designs, execution, and reporting. These 3 papers dealt with 2 chemicals, one of which, mercury, was negative for aneuploidy induction in humans, and the other, pyrimethamine, was positive in an experimental rodent study. The majority of papers (94%) were considered inconclusive for a variety of reasons. The most common reasons for calling a study inconclusive were (a) combining data on hyperploidy with those on hypoploidy and/or polyploidy, (b) an inadequate or unspecified number of animals and/or cells per animal scored per treatment group, and (c) poor data presentation such that animal-to-animal variability could not be assessed. Suggestions for protocol development are made, and the future directions of research into aneuploidy induction are discussed.

  20. Comparison of amphibian and mammalian thyroperoxidase ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Thyroperoxidase (TPO) catalyzes the production of thyroid hormones in the vertebrate thyroid gland by oxidizing iodide (I- ) to produce iodinated tyrosines on thyroglobulin, and further coupling of specific mono- or di-iodinated tyrosines to generate the triiodo- and tetra-iodothyronine, precursors to thyroid hormone. This enzyme is a target for thyroid disrupting chemicals. TPO-inhibition by xenobiotics is a molecular initiating event that is known to perturb the thyroid axis by preventing synthesis of thyroid hormone. Previous work on TPO-inhibition has been focused on mammalian TPO; specifically, the rat and pig. A primary objective of this experiment was to directly measure TPO activity in a non-mammalian system, in this case a thyroid gland homogenate from Xenopus laevis; as well as compare chemical inhibition from past mammalian studies to the amphibian data generated. Thyroid glands obtained from X. laevis tadpoles at NF stages 58-60, were pooled and homogenized by sonication in phosphate buffer. This homogenate was then used to test 24 chemicals for inhibition of TPO as measured by conversion of Amplex UltraRed (AUR) substrate to its fluorescent product. The test chemicals were selected based upon previous results from rat in vitro TPO assays, and X. laevis in vitro and in vivo studies for thyroid disrupting endpoints, and included both positive and negative chemicals in these assays. An initial screening of the chemicals was done at a single high con

  1. Mammalian masticatory muscles: homology, nomenclature, and diversification.

    PubMed

    Druzinsky, Robert E; Doherty, Alison H; De Vree, Frits L

    2011-08-01

    There is a deep and rich literature of comparative studies of jaw muscles in mammals but no recent analyses employ modern phylogenetic techniques to better understand evolutionary changes that have occurred in these muscles. In order to fully develop and utilize the Feeding Experiments End-user Database (FEED), we are constructing a comprehensive ontology of mammalian jaw muscles. This process has led to a careful consideration of nomenclature and homologies of the muscles and their constituent parts. Precise determinations of muscle attachments have shown that muscles with similar names are not necessarily homologous. Using new anatomical descriptions derived from the literature, we defined character states for the jaw muscles in diverse mammalian species. We then mapped those characters onto a recent phylogeny of mammals with the aid of the Mesquite software package. Our data further elucidate how muscle groups associated with the feeding apparatus differ and have become highly specialized in certain mammalian orders, such as Rodentia, while remaining conserved in other orders. We believe that careful naming of muscles and statistical analyses of their distributions among mammals, in association with the FEED database, will lead to new, significant insights into the functional, structural, and evolutionary morphology of the jaw muscles.

  2. Mutation hot spots in mammalian mitochondrial DNA.

    PubMed

    Galtier, Nicolas; Enard, David; Radondy, Yoan; Bazin, Eric; Belkhir, Khalid

    2006-02-01

    Animal mitochondrial DNA is characterized by a remarkably high level of within-species homoplasy, that is, phylogenetic incongruence between sites of the molecule. Several investigators have invoked recombination to explain it, challenging the dogma of maternal, clonal mitochondrial inheritance in animals. Alternatively, a high level of homoplasy could be explained by the existence of mutation hot spots. By using an exhaustive mammalian data set, we test the hot spot hypothesis by comparing patterns of site-specific polymorphism and divergence in several groups of closely related species, including hominids. We detect significant co-occurrence of synonymous polymorphisms among closely related species in various mammalian groups, and a correlation between the site-specific levels of variability within humans (on one hand) and between Hominoidea species (on the other hand), indicating that mutation hot spots actually exist in mammalian mitochondrial coding regions. The whole data, however, cannot be explained by a simple mutation hot spots model. Rather, we show that the site-specific mutation rate quickly varies in time, so that the same sites are not hypermutable in distinct lineages. This study provides a plausible mutation model that potentially accounts for the peculiar distribution of mitochondrial sequence variation in mammals without the need for invoking recombination. It also gives hints about the proximal causes of mitochondrial site-specific hypermutability in humans.

  3. MAMMALIAN CELLS CONTAIN A SECOND NUCLEOCYTOPLASMIC HEXOSAMINIDASE

    PubMed Central

    Gutternigg, Martin; Rendić, Dubravko; Voglauer, Regina; Iskratsch, Thomas; Wilson, Iain B. H.

    2010-01-01

    Some thirty years ago, work on mammalian tissues suggested the presence of two cytosolic hexosaminidases in mammalian cells; one of these has been more recently characterised in recombinant form and has an important role in cellular function due to its ability to cleave β-N-acetylglucosamine residues from a variety of nuclear and cytoplasmic proteins. However, the molecular nature of the second cytosolic hexosaminidase, named hexosaminidase D, has remained obscure. In the present study, we molecularly characterise for the first time the human and murine recombinant forms of enzymes, encoded by HEXDC genes, which appear to correspond to hexosaminidase D in terms of substrate specificity, pH dependency and temperature stability; furthermore, a myc-tagged form of this novel hexosaminidase displays a nucleocytoplasmic localisation. Transcripts of the corresponding gene are expressed in a number of murine tissues. Based on its sequence, this enzyme represents, along with the lysosomal hexosaminidase subunits encoded by the HEXA and HEXB genes, the third class 20 glycosidase to be found from mammalian sources. PMID:19040401

  4. Full-length enriched cDNA libraries and ORFeome analysis of sugarcane hybrid and ancestor genotypes.

    PubMed

    Nishiyama, Milton Yutaka; Ferreira, Savio Siqueira; Tang, Pei-Zhong; Becker, Scott; Pörtner-Taliana, Antje; Souza, Glaucia Mendes

    2014-01-01

    Sugarcane is a major crop used for food and bioenergy production. Modern cultivars are hybrids derived from crosses between Saccharum officinarum and Saccharum spontaneum. Hybrid cultivars combine favorable characteristics from ancestral species and contain a genome that is highly polyploid and aneuploid, containing 100-130 chromosomes. These complex genomes represent a huge challenge for molecular studies and for the development of biotechnological tools that can facilitate sugarcane improvement. Here, we describe full-length enriched cDNA libraries for Saccharum officinarum, Saccharum spontaneum, and one hybrid genotype (SP803280) and analyze the set of open reading frames (ORFs) in their genomes (i.e., their ORFeomes). We found 38,195 (19%) sugarcane-specific transcripts that did not match transcripts from other databases. Less than 1.6% of all transcripts were ancestor-specific (i.e., not expressed in SP803280). We also found 78,008 putative new sugarcane transcripts that were absent in the largest sugarcane expressed sequence tag database (SUCEST). Functional annotation showed a high frequency of protein kinases and stress-related proteins. We also detected natural antisense transcript expression, which mapped to 94% of all plant KEGG pathways; however, each genotype showed different pathways enriched in antisense transcripts. Our data appeared to cover 53.2% (17,563 genes) and 46.8% (937 transcription factors) of all sugarcane full-length genes and transcription factors, respectively. This work represents a significant advancement in defining the sugarcane ORFeome and will be useful for protein characterization, single nucleotide polymorphism and splicing variant identification, evolutionary and comparative studies, and sugarcane genome assembly and annotation.

  5. Horizontal Transfer of a Subtilisin Gene from Plants into an Ancestor of the Plant Pathogenic Fungal Genus Colletotrichum

    PubMed Central

    Armijos Jaramillo, Vinicio Danilo; Vargas, Walter Alberto; Sukno, Serenella Ana; Thon, Michael R.

    2013-01-01

    The genus Colletotrichum contains a large number of phytopathogenic fungi that produce enormous economic losses around the world. The effect of horizontal gene transfer (HGT) has not been studied yet in these organisms. Inter-Kingdom HGT into fungal genomes has been reported in the past but knowledge about the HGT between plants and fungi is particularly limited. We describe a gene in the genome of several species of the genus Colletotrichum with a strong resemblance to subtilisins typically found in plant genomes. Subtilisins are an important group of serine proteases, widely distributed in all of the kingdoms of life. Our hypothesis is that the gene was acquired by Colletotrichum spp. through (HGT) from plants to a Colletotrichum ancestor. We provide evidence to support this hypothesis in the form of phylogenetic analyses as well as a characterization of the similarity of the subtilisin at the primary, secondary and tertiary structural levels. The remarkable level of structural conservation of Colletotrichum plant-like subtilisin (CPLS) with plant subtilisins and the differences with the rest of Colletotrichum subtilisins suggests the possibility of molecular mimicry. Our phylogenetic analysis indicates that the HGT event would have occurred approximately 150–155 million years ago, after the divergence of the Colletotrichum lineage from other fungi. Gene expression analysis shows that the gene is modulated during the infection of maize by C. graminicola suggesting that it has a role in plant disease. Furthermore, the upregulation of the CPLS coincides with the downregulation of several plant genes encoding subtilisins. Based on the known roles of subtilisins in plant pathogenic fungi and the gene expression pattern that we observed, we postulate that the CPLSs have an important role in plant infection. PMID:23554975

  6. Horizontal transfer of a subtilisin gene from plants into an ancestor of the plant pathogenic fungal genus Colletotrichum.

    PubMed

    Armijos Jaramillo, Vinicio Danilo; Vargas, Walter Alberto; Sukno, Serenella Ana; Thon, Michael R

    2013-01-01

    The genus Colletotrichum contains a large number of phytopathogenic fungi that produce enormous economic losses around the world. The effect of horizontal gene transfer (HGT) has not been studied yet in these organisms. Inter-Kingdom HGT into fungal genomes has been reported in the past but knowledge about the HGT between plants and fungi is particularly limited. We describe a gene in the genome of several species of the genus Colletotrichum with a strong resemblance to subtilisins typically found in plant genomes. Subtilisins are an important group of serine proteases, widely distributed in all of the kingdoms of life. Our hypothesis is that the gene was acquired by Colletotrichum spp. through (HGT) from plants to a Colletotrichum ancestor. We provide evidence to support this hypothesis in the form of phylogenetic analyses as well as a characterization of the similarity of the subtilisin at the primary, secondary and tertiary structural levels. The remarkable level of structural conservation of Colletotrichum plant-like subtilisin (CPLS) with plant subtilisins and the differences with the rest of Colletotrichum subtilisins suggests the possibility of molecular mimicry. Our phylogenetic analysis indicates that the HGT event would have occurred approximately 150-155 million years ago, after the divergence of the Colletotrichum lineage from other fungi. Gene expression analysis shows that the gene is modulated during the infection of maize by C. graminicola suggesting that it has a role in plant disease. Furthermore, the upregulation of the CPLS coincides with the downregulation of several plant genes encoding subtilisins. Based on the known roles of subtilisins in plant pathogenic fungi and the gene expression pattern that we observed, we postulate that the CPLSs have an important role in plant infection.

  7. Comparative analysis of the gonadal transcriptomes of the all-female species Poecilia formosa and its maternal ancestor Poecilia mexicana

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The Amazon molly, Poecilia formosa (Teleostei: Poeciliinae) is an unisexual, all-female species. It evolved through the hybridisation of two closely related sexual species and exhibits clonal reproduction by sperm dependent parthenogenesis (or gynogenesis) where the sperm of a parental species is only used to activate embryogenesis of the apomictic, diploid eggs but does not contribute genetic material to the offspring. Here we provide and describe the first de novo assembled transcriptome of the Amazon molly in comparison with its maternal ancestor, the Atlantic molly Poecilia mexicana. The transcriptome data were produced through sequencing of single end libraries (100 bp) with the Illumina sequencing technique. Results 83,504,382 reads for the Amazon molly and 81,625,840 for the Atlantic molly were assembled into 127,283 and 78,961 contigs for the Amazon molly and the Atlantic molly, respectively. 63% resp. 57% of the contigs could be annotated with gene ontology terms after sequence similarity comparisons. Furthermore, we were able to identify genes normally involved in reproduction and especially in meiosis also in the transcriptome dataset of the apomictic reproducing Amazon molly. Conclusions We assembled and annotated the transcriptome of a non-model organism, the Amazon molly, without a reference genome (de novo). The obtained dataset is a fundamental resource for future research in functional and expression analysis. Also, the presence of 30 meiosis-specific genes within a species where no meiosis is known to take place is remarkable and raises new questions for future research. PMID:24742317

  8. Comparative chloroplast genomics and phylogenetics of Fagopyrum esculentum ssp. ancestrale – A wild ancestor of cultivated buckwheat

    PubMed Central

    Logacheva, Maria D; Samigullin, Tahir H; Dhingra, Amit; Penin, Aleksey A

    2008-01-01

    Background Chloroplast genome sequences are extremely informative about species-interrelationships owing to its non-meiotic and often uniparental inheritance over generations. The subject of our study, Fagopyrum esculentum, is a member of the family Polygonaceae belonging to the order Caryophyllales. An uncertainty remains regarding the affinity of Caryophyllales and the asterids that could be due to undersampling of the taxa. With that background, having access to the complete chloroplast genome sequence for Fagopyrum becomes quite pertinent. Results We report the complete chloroplast genome sequence of a wild ancestor of cultivated buckwheat, Fagopyrum esculentum ssp. ancestrale. The sequence was rapidly determined using a previously described approach that utilized a PCR-based method and employed universal primers, designed on the scaffold of multiple sequence alignment of chloroplast genomes. The gene content and order in buckwheat chloroplast genome is similar to Spinacia oleracea. However, some unique structural differences exist: the presence of an intron in the rpl2 gene, a frameshift mutation in the rpl23 gene and extension of the inverted repeat region to include the ycf1 gene. Phylogenetic analysis of 61 protein-coding gene sequences from 44 complete plastid genomes provided strong support for the sister relationships of Caryophyllales (including Polygonaceae) to asterids. Further, our analysis also provided support for Amborella as sister to all other angiosperms, but interestingly, in the bayesian phylogeny inference based on first two codon positions Amborella united with Nymphaeales. Conclusion Comparative genomics analyses revealed that the Fagopyrum chloroplast genome harbors the characteristic gene content and organization as has been described for several other chloroplast genomes. However, it has some unique structural features distinct from previously reported complete chloroplast genome sequences. Phylogenetic analysis of the dataset

  9. Particle Image Velocimetry Measurements in Anatomically-Accurate Models of the Mammalian Nasal Cavity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rumple, C.; Richter, J.; Craven, B. A.; Krane, M.

    2012-11-01

    A summary of the research being carried out by our multidisciplinary team to better understand the form and function of the nose in different mammalian species that include humans, carnivores, ungulates, rodents, and marine animals will be presented. The mammalian nose houses a convoluted airway labyrinth, where two hallmark features of mammals occur, endothermy and olfaction. Because of the complexity of the nasal cavity, the anatomy and function of these upper airways remain poorly understood in most mammals. However, recent advances in high-resolution medical imaging, computational modeling, and experimental flow measurement techniques are now permitting the study of airflow and respiratory and olfactory transport phenomena in anatomically-accurate reconstructions of the nasal cavity. Here, we focus on efforts to manufacture transparent, anatomically-accurate models for stereo particle image velocimetry (SPIV) measurements of nasal airflow. Challenges in the design and manufacture of index-matched anatomical models are addressed and preliminary SPIV measurements are presented. Such measurements will constitute a validation database for concurrent computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations of mammalian respiration and olfaction. Supported by the National Science Foundation.

  10. Effects of Global Warming on Ancient Mammalian Communities and Their Environments

    PubMed Central

    DeSantis, Larisa R. G.; Feranec, Robert S.; MacFadden, Bruce J.

    2009-01-01

    Background Current global warming affects the composition and dynamics of mammalian communities and can increase extinction risk; however, long-term effects of warming on mammals are less understood. Dietary reconstructions inferred from stable isotopes of fossil herbivorous mammalian tooth enamel document environmental and climatic changes in ancient ecosystems, including C3/C4 transitions and relative seasonality. Methodology/Principal Findings Here, we use stable carbon and oxygen isotopes preserved in fossil teeth to document the magnitude of mammalian dietary shifts and ancient floral change during geologically documented glacial and interglacial periods during the Pliocene (∼1.9 million years ago) and Pleistocene (∼1.3 million years ago) in Florida. Stable isotope data demonstrate increased aridity, increased C4 grass consumption, inter-faunal dietary partitioning, increased isotopic niche breadth of mixed feeders, niche partitioning of phylogenetically similar taxa, and differences in relative seasonality with warming. Conclusion/Significance Our data show that global warming resulted in dramatic vegetation and dietary changes even at lower latitudes (∼28°N). Our results also question the use of models that predict the long term decline and extinction of species based on the assumption that niches are conserved over time. These findings have immediate relevance to clarifying possible biotic responses to current global warming in modern ecosystems. PMID:19492043

  11. Anterolateral Ligament Reconstruction

    PubMed Central

    Zordan, J.; Etcheto, H. Rivarola; Blanchod, C. Collazo; Palanconi, M.; Salinas, E. Álvarez; Autorino, CM; Escobar, G.

    2017-01-01

    Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction is a common procedure in daily practice with 75 to 97% excellent long-term results. But in certain cases, some patients perceive rotational instability, for this reason the revision rate can be 10 to 15%. Objectives: evaluate functional outcome in revisions of ACL reconstruction associated with ALL. Methods: Between July 2015 and February 2016 (11 knees) Eleven Revision ACL reconstruction were performed with ALL with double incision technique performed by the same surgical team. Inclusion criteria were: ACL reconstruction failures with a grade 2 or 3 Lachman test, a grade 3 pivot-shift without other ligamentary injury lesions associated and complete range of motion. Results: The concept of rotational instability associated with ACL injury has been described more than a decade ago. However, there is no consensus on how to quantify rotational instability in ACL injuries; so when associating an extracapsular technique. Currently there is a lack of high-level evidence comparing isolated ACL repair and associated with the modified reconstruction of ALL that allows us to define therapeutic approaches. The ALL reconstruction associate an ACL reconstruction remains a matter of study. Conclusion: We obtain excellent results in antero – posterior and rotational stability after performing the procedure.

  12. Evolution of Mitochondria Reconstructed from the Energy Metabolism of Living Bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Degli Esposti, Mauro; Chouaia, Bessem; Comandatore, Francesco; Crotti, Elena; Sassera, Davide; Lievens, Patricia Marie-Jeanne; Daffonchio, Daniele; Bandi, Claudio

    2014-01-01

    The ancestors of mitochondria, or proto-mitochondria, played a crucial role in the evolution of eukaryotic cells and derived from symbiotic α-proteobacteria which merged with other microorganisms - the basis of the widely accepted endosymbiotic theory. However, the identity and relatives of proto-mitochondria remain elusive. Here we show that methylotrophic α-proteobacteria could be the closest living models for mitochondrial ancestors. We reached this conclusion after reconstructing the possible evolutionary pathways of the bioenergy systems of proto-mitochondria with a genomic survey of extant α-proteobacteria. Results obtained with complementary molecular and genetic analyses of diverse bioenergetic proteins converge in indicating the pathway stemming from methylotrophic bacteria as the most probable route of mitochondrial evolution. Contrary to other α-proteobacteria, methylotrophs show transition forms for the bioenergetic systems analysed. Our approach of focusing on these bioenergetic systems overcomes the phylogenetic impasse that has previously complicated the search for mitochondrial ancestors. Moreover, our results provide a new perspective for experimentally re-evolving mitochondria from extant bacteria and in the future produce synthetic mitochondria. PMID:24804722

  13. Nasal reconstruction after epithelioma.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Camps, S

    2001-01-01

    In this paper we present our procedure for the treatment, histopathological diagnosis, and resection of skin cancer in the nasal pyramid and its subsequent reconstruction. Because we are dealing with the most important anatomical feature of the face our goal is an aesthetic reconstruction [2,4] according to the anatomical subunits criterion of Burget [3]. First, a histopathological diagnosis is made to determine the nature of the tumor. Then, we proceed with the resection according to the Mohs Micrographic Surgery [1,5,7]. Then we begin with the first step of the nasal reconstruction.

  14. Morphological and molecular convergences in mammalian phylogenetics.

    PubMed

    Zou, Zhengting; Zhang, Jianzhi

    2016-09-02

    Phylogenetic trees reconstructed from molecular sequences are often considered more reliable than those reconstructed from morphological characters, in part because convergent evolution, which confounds phylogenetic reconstruction, is believed to be rarer for molecular sequences than for morphologies. However, neither the validity of this belief nor its underlying cause is known. Here comparing thousands of characters of each type that have been used for inferring the phylogeny of mammals, we find that on average morphological characters indeed experience much more convergences than amino acid sites, but this disparity is explained by fewer states per character rather than an intrinsically higher susceptibility to convergence for morphologies than sequences. We show by computer simulation and actual data analysis that a simple method for identifying and removing convergence-prone characters improves phylogenetic accuracy, potentially enabling, when necessary, the inclusion of morphologies and hence fossils for reliable tree inference.

  15. Morphological and molecular convergences in mammalian phylogenetics

    PubMed Central

    Zou, Zhengting; Zhang, Jianzhi

    2016-01-01

    Phylogenetic trees reconstructed from molecular sequences are often considered more reliable than those reconstructed from morphological characters, in part because convergent evolution, which confounds phylogenetic reconstruction, is believed to be rarer for molecular sequences than for morphologies. However, neither the validity of this belief nor its underlying cause is known. Here comparing thousands of characters of each type that have been used for inferring the phylogeny of mammals, we find that on average morphological characters indeed experience much more convergences than amino acid sites, but this disparity is explained by fewer states per character rather than an intrinsically higher susceptibility to convergence for morphologies than sequences. We show by computer simulation and actual data analysis that a simple method for identifying and removing convergence-prone characters improves phylogenetic accuracy, potentially enabling, when necessary, the inclusion of morphologies and hence fossils for reliable tree inference. PMID:27585543

  16. Craniofacial reconstruction - series (image)

    MedlinePlus

    Patients requiring craniofacial reconstruction have: birth defects (such as hypertelorism, Crouzon's disease, Apert's syndrome) injuries to the head, face, or jaws (maxillofacial) tumors deformities caused by treatments of tumors

  17. Breast Reconstruction Options

    MedlinePlus

    ... surgery to allow for better healing. You need radiation therapy. Many doctors recommend that women not have immediate ... al. Ischemic complications in pedicle, free, and muscle sparing transverse rectus abdominis myocutaneous flaps for breast reconstruction. ...

  18. Reconstruction of Mandibular Defects

    PubMed Central

    Chim, Harvey; Salgado, Christopher J.; Mardini, Samir; Chen, Hung-Chi

    2010-01-01

    Defects requiring reconstruction in the mandible are commonly encountered and may result from resection of benign or malignant lesions, trauma, or osteoradionecrosis. Mandibular defects can be classified according to location and extent, as well as involvement of mucosa, skin, and tongue. Vascularized bone flaps, in general, provide the best functional and aesthetic outcome, with the fibula flap remaining the gold standard for mandible reconstruction. In this review, we discuss classification and approach to reconstruction of mandibular defects. We also elaborate upon four commonly used free osteocutaneous flaps, inclusive of fibula, iliac crest, scapula, and radial forearm. Finally, we discuss indications and use of osseointegrated implants as well as recent advances in mandibular reconstruction. PMID:22550439

  19. Breast reconstruction - implants

    MedlinePlus

    ... cosmetic surgery after breast cancer can improve your sense of well-being and your quality of life. Alternative Names Breast implants surgery References Roehl KR, Wilhelmi BJ, Phillips LG. Breast reconstruction. ...

  20. The effective population sizes of the anthropoid ancestors of the human-chimpanzee lineage provide insights on the historical biogeography of the great apes.

    PubMed

    Schrago, Carlos G

    2014-01-01

    The recent development of methods that apply coalescent theory to phylogenetic problems has enabled the study of the population-level phenomena that drove the diversification of anthropoid primates. Effective population size, Ne, is one of the main parameters that constitute the theoretical underpinning of these new analytical approaches. For this reason, the ancestral N(e) of selected primate lineages has been thoroughly investigated. However, for some of these lineages, the estimates of ancestral N(e) reported in several studies present significant variation. This is the case for the common ancestor of humans and chimpanzees. Moreover, several ancestral anthropoid lineages have been ignored in the studies conducted so far. Because N(e) is fundamental to understand historic species demography, it is a crucial component of a complete description of the historical scenario of primate evolution. It also provides information that is helpful for differentiating between competing biogeographical hypotheses. In this study, the effective population sizes of the anthropoid ancestors of the human-chimp lineage are inferred using data sets of coding and noncoding sequences. A general pattern of a serial decline of population sizes is found between the ancestral lineage of Anthropoidea and that of Homo and Pan. When the theoretical distribution of gene trees was derived from the parametric estimates obtained, it closely corresponded to the empirical frequency of inferred gene trees along the genome. The most abrupt decrease of N(e) was found between the ancestors of all great apes and those of the African great apes alone. This suggests the occurrence of a genetic bottleneck during the evolution of Homininae, which corroborates the origin of African apes from a Eurasian ancestor.

  1. Independent evolution of knuckle-walking in African apes shows that humans did not evolve from a knuckle-walking ancestor.

    PubMed

    Kivell, Tracy L; Schmitt, Daniel

    2009-08-25

    Despite decades of debate, it remains unclear whether human bipedalism evolved from a terrestrial knuckle-walking ancestor or from a more generalized, arboreal ape ancestor. Proponents of the knuckle-walking hypothesis focused on the wrist and hand to find morphological evidence of this behavior in the human fossil record. These studies, however, have not examined variation or development of purported knuckle-walking features in apes or other primates, data that are critical to resolution of this long-standing debate. Here we present novel data on the frequency and development of putative knuckle-walking features of the wrist in apes and monkeys. We use these data to test the hypothesis that all knuckle-walking apes share similar anatomical features and that these features can be used to reliably infer locomotor behavior in our extinct ancestors. Contrary to previous expectations, features long-assumed to indicate knuckle-walking behavior are not found in all African apes, show different developmental patterns across species, and are found in nonknuckle-walking primates as well. However, variation among African ape wrist morphology can be clearly explained if we accept the likely independent evolution of 2 fundamentally different biomechanical modes of knuckle-walking: an extended wrist posture in an arboreal environment (Pan) versus a neutral, columnar hand posture in a terrestrial environment (Gorilla). The presence of purported knuckle-walking features in the hominin wrist can thus be viewed as evidence of arboreality, not terrestriality, and provide evidence that human bipedalism evolved from a more arboreal ancestor occupying the ecological niche common to all living apes.

  2. Protein and genome evolution in Mammalian cells for biotechnology applications.

    PubMed

    Majors, Brian S; Chiang, Gisela G; Betenbaugh, Michael J

    2009-06-01

    Mutation and selection are the essential steps of evolution. Researchers have long used in vitro mutagenesis, expression, and selection techniques in laboratory bacteria and yeast cultures to evolve proteins with new properties, termed directed evolution. Unfortunately, the nature of mammalian cells makes applying these mutagenesis and whole-organism evolution techniques to mammalian protein expression systems laborious and time consuming. Mammalian evolution systems would be useful to test unique mammalian cell proteins and protein characteristics, such as complex glycosylation. Protein evolution in mammalian cells would allow for generation of novel diagnostic tools and designer polypeptides that can only be tested in a mammalian expression system. Recent advances have shown that mammalian cells of the immune system can be utilized to evolve transgenes during their natural mutagenesis processes, thus creating proteins with unique properties, such as fluorescence. On a more global level, researchers have shown that mutation systems that affect the entire genome of a mammalian cell can give rise to cells with unique phenotypes suitable for commercial processes. This review examines the advances in mammalian cell and protein evolution and the application of this work toward advances in commercial mammalian cell biotechnology.

  3. Lining in nasal reconstruction.

    PubMed

    Haack, Sebastian; Fischer, Helmut; Gubisch, Wolfgang

    2014-06-01

    Restoring nasal lining is one of the essential parts during reconstruction of full-thickness defects of the nose. Without a sufficient nasal lining the whole reconstruction will fail. Nasal lining has to sufficiently cover the shaping subsurface framework. But in addition, lining must not compromise or even block nasal ventilation. This article demonstrates different possibilities of lining reconstruction. The use of composite grafts for small rim defects is described. The limits and technical components for application of skin grafts are discussed. Then the advantages and limitations of endonasal, perinasal, and hingeover flaps are demonstrated. Strategies to restore lining with one or two forehead flaps are presented. Finally, the possibilities and technical aspects to reconstruct nasal lining with a forearm flap are demonstrated. Technical details are explained by intraoperative pictures. Clinical cases are shown to illustrate the different approaches and should help to understand the process of decision making. It is concluded that although the lining cannot be seen after reconstruction of the cover it remains one of the key components for nasal reconstruction. When dealing with full-thickness nasal defects, there is no way to avoid learning how to restore nasal lining.

  4. Efficient holoscopy image reconstruction.

    PubMed

    Hillmann, Dierck; Franke, Gesa; Lührs, Christian; Koch, Peter; Hüttmann, Gereon

    2012-09-10

    Holoscopy is a tomographic imaging technique that combines digital holography and Fourier-domain optical coherence tomography (OCT) to gain tomograms with diffraction limited resolution and uniform sensitivity over several Rayleigh lengths. The lateral image information is calculated from the spatial interference pattern formed by light scattered from the sample and a reference beam. The depth information is obtained from the spectral dependence of the recorded digital holograms. Numerous digital holograms are acquired at different wavelengths and then reconstructed for a common plane in the sample. Afterwards standard Fourier-domain OCT signal processing achieves depth discrimination. Here we describe and demonstrate an optimized data reconstruction algorithm for holoscopy which is related to the inverse scattering reconstruction of wavelength-scanned full-field optical coherence tomography data. Instead of calculating a regularized pseudoinverse of the forward operator, the recorded optical fields are propagated back into the sample volume. In one processing step the high frequency components of the scattering potential are reconstructed on a non-equidistant grid in three-dimensional spatial frequency space. A Fourier transform yields an OCT equivalent image of the object structure. In contrast to the original holoscopy reconstruction with backpropagation and Fourier transform with respect to the wavenumber, the required processing time does neither depend on the confocal parameter nor on the depth of the volume. For an imaging NA of 0.14, the processing time was decreased by a factor of 15, at higher NA the gain in reconstruction speed may reach two orders of magnitude.

  5. Mammalian niche conservation through deep time.

    PubMed

    DeSantis, Larisa R G; Beavins Tracy, Rachel A; Koontz, Cassandra S; Roseberry, John C; Velasco, Matthew C

    2012-01-01

    Climate change alters species distributions, causing plants and animals to move north or to higher elevations with current warming. Bioclimatic models predict species distributions based on extant realized niches and assume niche conservation. Here, we evaluate if proxies for niches (i.e., range areas) are conserved at the family level through deep time, from the Eocene to the Pleistocene. We analyze the occurrence of all mammalian families in the continental USA, calculating range area, percent range area occupied, range area rank, and range polygon centroids during each epoch. Percent range area occupied significantly increases from the Oligocene to the Miocene and again from the Pliocene to the Pleistocene; however, mammalian families maintain statistical concordance between rank orders across time. Families with greater taxonomic diversity occupy a greater percent of available range area during each epoch and net changes in taxonomic diversity are significantly positively related to changes in percent range area occupied from the Eocene to the Pleistocene. Furthermore, gains and losses in generic and species diversity are remarkably consistent with ~2.3 species gained per generic increase. Centroids demonstrate southeastern shifts from the Eocene through the Pleistocene that may correspond to major environmental events and/or climate changes during the Cenozoic. These results demonstrate range conservation at the family level and support the idea that niche conservation at higher taxonomic levels operates over deep time and may be controlled by life history traits. Furthermore, families containing megafauna and/or terminal Pleistocene extinction victims do not incur significantly greater declines in range area rank than families containing only smaller taxa and/or only survivors, from the Pliocene to Pleistocene. Collectively, these data evince the resilience of families to climate and/or environmental change in deep time, the absence of terminal Pleistocene

  6. Genome Editing Using Mammalian Haploid Cells

    PubMed Central

    Horii, Takuro; Hatada, Izuho

    2015-01-01

    Haploid cells are useful for studying gene functions because disruption of a single allele can cause loss-of-function phenotypes. Recent success in generating haploid embryonic stem cells (ESCs) in mice, rats, and monkeys provides a new platform for simple genetic manipulation of the mammalian genome. Use of haploid ESCs enhances the genome-editing potential of the CRISPR/Cas system. For example, CRISPR/Cas was used in haploid ESCs to generate multiple knockouts and large deletions at high efficiency. In addition, genome-wide screening is facilitated by haploid cell lines containing gene knockout libraries. PMID:26437403

  7. AS52/GPT Mammalian Mutagenesis Assay

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1996-05-10

    dimethylnitrosamine (DMN) at 50 and 100 f.J.g/rnl was used as a 3 TLS Project Nn. A0ŗ-003: AS52/GPT Mammalian Mutagenesis Assay promutagen that requires metabolic...Chemical Source Lot No. air Air Products N/A calcium chloride Sigma 84F-0723 d imeth y !sulfoxide Fisher 933274 dimethylnitrosamine Sigma 82B0365...methanesulfonate (EMS) at 150 and 300 J.i-g/ml is used as a direct-acting mutagen for the nonactivated portion, and dimethylnitrosamine (DMN) at 150 and 300

  8. The transcriptional landscape of the mammalian genome.

    PubMed

    Carninci, P; Kasukawa, T; Katayama, S; Gough, J; Frith, M C; Maeda, N; Oyama, R; Ravasi, T; Lenhard, B; Wells, C; Kodzius, R; Shimokawa, K; Bajic, V B; Brenner, S E; Batalov, S; Forrest, A R R; Zavolan, M; Davis, M J; Wilming, L G; Aidinis, V; Allen, J E; Ambesi-Impiombato, A; Apweiler, R; Aturaliya, R N; Bailey, T L; Bansal, M; Baxter, L; Beisel, K W; Bersano, T; Bono, H; Chalk, A M; Chiu, K P; Choudhary, V; Christoffels, A; Clutterbuck, D R; Crowe, M L; Dalla, E; Dalrymple, B P; de Bono, B; Della Gatta, G; di Bernardo, D; Down, T; Engstrom, P; Fagiolini, M; Faulkner, G; Fletcher, C F; Fukushima, T; Furuno, M; Futaki, S; Gariboldi, M; Georgii-Hemming, P; Gingeras, T R; Gojobori, T; Green, R E; Gustincich, S; Harbers, M; Hayashi, Y; Hensch, T K; Hirokawa, N; Hill, D; Huminiecki, L; Iacono, M; Ikeo, K; Iwama, A; Ishikawa, T; Jakt, M; Kanapin, A; Katoh, M; Kawasawa, Y; Kelso, J; Kitamura, H; Kitano, H; Kollias, G; Krishnan, S P T; Kruger, A; Kummerfeld, S K; Kurochkin, I V; Lareau, L F; Lazarevic, D; Lipovich, L; Liu, J; Liuni, S; McWilliam, S; Madan Babu, M; Madera, M; Marchionni, L; Matsuda, H; Matsuzawa, S; Miki, H; Mignone, F; Miyake, S; Morris, K; Mottagui-Tabar, S; Mulder, N; Nakano, N; Nakauchi, H; Ng, P; Nilsson, R; Nishiguchi, S; Nishikawa, S; Nori, F; Ohara, O; Okazaki, Y; Orlando, V; Pang, K C; Pavan, W J; Pavesi, G; Pesole, G; Petrovsky, N; Piazza, S; Reed, J; Reid, J F; Ring, B Z; Ringwald, M; Rost, B; Ruan, Y; Salzberg, S L; Sandelin, A; Schneider, C; Schönbach, C; Sekiguchi, K; Semple, C A M; Seno, S; Sessa, L; Sheng, Y; Shibata, Y; Shimada, H; Shimada, K; Silva, D; Sinclair, B; Sperling, S; Stupka, E; Sugiura, K; Sultana, R; Takenaka, Y; Taki, K; Tammoja, K; Tan, S L; Tang, S; Taylor, M S; Tegner, J; Teichmann, S A; Ueda, H R; van Nimwegen, E; Verardo, R; Wei, C L; Yagi, K; Yamanishi, H; Zabarovsky, E; Zhu, S; Zimmer, A; Hide, W; Bult, C; Grimmond, S M; Teasdale, R D; Liu, E T; Brusic, V; Quackenbush, J; Wahlestedt, C; Mattick, J S; Hume, D A; Kai, C; Sasaki, D; Tomaru, Y; Fukuda, S; Kanamori-Katayama, M; Suzuki, M; Aoki, J; Arakawa, T; Iida, J; Imamura, K; Itoh, M; Kato, T; Kawaji, H; Kawagashira, N; Kawashima, T; Kojima, M; Kondo, S; Konno, H; Nakano, K; Ninomiya, N; Nishio, T; Okada, M; Plessy, C; Shibata, K; Shiraki, T; Suzuki, S; Tagami, M; Waki, K; Watahiki, A; Okamura-Oho, Y; Suzuki, H; Kawai, J; Hayashizaki, Y

    2005-09-02

    This study describes comprehensive polling of transcription start and termination sites and analysis of previously unidentified full-length complementary DNAs derived from the mouse genome. We identify the 5' and 3' boundaries of 181,047 transcripts with extensive variation in transcripts arising from alternative promoter usage, splicing, and polyadenylation. There are 16,247 new mouse protein-coding transcripts, including 5154 encoding previously unidentified proteins. Genomic mapping of the transcriptome reveals transcriptional forests, with overlapping transcription on both strands, separated by deserts in which few transcripts are observed. The data provide a comprehensive platform for the comparative analysis of mammalian transcriptional regulation in differentiation and development.

  9. The virome in mammalian physiology and disease

    PubMed Central

    Virgin, Herbert W.

    2014-01-01

    The virome contains the most abundant and fastest-mutating genetic elements on Earth. The mammalian virome is constituted of viruses that infect host cells, virus-derived elements in our chromosomes, and viruses that infect the broad array of other types of organisms that inhabit us. Virome interactions with the host cannot be encompassed by a monotheistic view of viruses as pathogens. Instead, the genetic and transcriptional identity of mammals is defined in part by our co-evolved virome, a concept with profound implications for understanding health and disease. PMID:24679532

  10. Mammalian odorant receptors: functional evolution and variation

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Yue; Matsunami, Hiroaki

    2015-01-01

    In mammals, the perception of smell starts with the activation of odorant receptors (ORs) by volatile molecules in the environment. The mammalian OR repertoire has been subject to rapid evolution, and is highly diverse within the human population. Recent advances in the functional expression and ligand identification of ORs allow for functional analysis of OR evolution, and reveal that changes in OR protein sequences translate into high degrees of functional variations. Moreover, in several cases the functional variation of a single OR affects the perception of its cognate odor ligand, providing clues as to how an odor is coded at the receptor level. PMID:25660959

  11. Derivation of the mammalian skull vault

    PubMed Central

    MORRISS-KAY, GILLIAN M.

    2001-01-01

    This review describes the evolutionary history of the mammalian skull vault as a basis for understanding its complex structure. Current information on the developmental tissue origins of the skull vault bones (mesoderm and neural crest) is assessed for mammals and other tetrapods. This information is discussed in the context of evolutionary changes in the proportions of the skull vault bones at the sarcopterygian-tetrapod transition. The dual tissue origin of the skull vault is considered in relation to the molecular mechanisms underlying osteogenic cell proliferation and differentiation in the sutural growth centres and in the proportionate contributions of different sutures to skull growth. PMID:11523816

  12. Mammalian Gravity Receptors: Structure and Metabolism

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ross, M. D.

    1985-01-01

    Calcium metabolism in mammalian gravity receptors is examined. To accomplish this objective it is necessary to study both the mineral deposits of the receptors, the otoconia, and the sensory areas themselves, the saccular and utricular maculas. The main focus was to elucidate the natures of the organic and inorganic phases of the crystalline masses, first in rat otoconia but more recently in otoliths and otoconia of a comparative series of vertebrates. Some of the ultrastructural findings in rat maculas, however, have prompted a more thorough study of the organization of the hair cells and innervation patterns in graviceptors.

  13. Mammalian developmental genetics in the twentieth century.

    PubMed

    Artzt, Karen

    2012-12-01

    This Perspectives is a review of the breathtaking history of mammalian genetics in the past century and, in particular, of the ways in which genetic thinking has illuminated aspects of mouse development. To illustrate the power of that thinking, selected hypothesis-driven experiments and technical advances are discussed. Also included in this account are the beginnings of mouse genetics at the Bussey Institute, Columbia University, and The Jackson Laboratory and a retrospective discussion of one of the classic problems in developmental genetics, the T/t complex and its genetic enigmas.

  14. Mammalian cell culture capacity for biopharmaceutical manufacturing.

    PubMed

    Ecker, Dawn M; Ransohoff, Thomas C

    2014-01-01

    : With worldwide sales of biopharmaceuticals increasing each year and continuing growth on the horizon, the manufacture of mammalian biopharmaceuticals has become a major global enterprise. We describe the current and future industry wide supply of manufacturing capacity with regard to capacity type, distribution, and geographic location. Bioreactor capacity and the use of single-use products for biomanufacturing are also profiled. An analysis of the use of this capacity is performed, including a discussion of current trends that will influence capacity growth, availability, and utilization in the coming years.

  15. Mammalian Developmental Genetics in the Twentieth Century

    PubMed Central

    Artzt, Karen

    2012-01-01

    This Perspectives is a review of the breathtaking history of mammalian genetics in the past century and, in particular, of the ways in which genetic thinking has illuminated aspects of mouse development. To illustrate the power of that thinking, selected hypothesis-driven experiments and technical advances are discussed. Also included in this account are the beginnings of mouse genetics at the Bussey Institute, Columbia University, and The Jackson Laboratory and a retrospective discussion of one of the classic problems in developmental genetics, the T/t complex and its genetic enigmas. PMID:23212897

  16. Molecular architecture of the mammalian circadian clock.

    PubMed

    Partch, Carrie L; Green, Carla B; Takahashi, Joseph S

    2014-02-01

    Circadian clocks coordinate physiology and behavior with the 24h solar day to provide temporal homeostasis with the external environment. The molecular clocks that drive these intrinsic rhythmic changes are based on interlocked transcription/translation feedback loops that integrate with diverse environmental and metabolic stimuli to generate internal 24h timing. In this review we highlight recent advances in our understanding of the core molecular clock and how it utilizes diverse transcriptional and post-transcriptional mechanisms to impart temporal control onto mammalian physiology. Understanding the way in which biological rhythms are generated throughout the body may provide avenues for temporally directed therapeutics to improve health and prevent disease.

  17. Specific mutations in the HEXA gene among Iraqi Jewish Tay-Sachs disease carriers: dating of founder ancestor.

    PubMed

    Karpati, Mazal; Gazit, Ephraim; Goldman, Boleslaw; Frisch, Amos; Colombo, Roberto; Peleg, Leah

    2004-02-01

    The incidence of Tay-Sachs disease (TSD) carriers, as defined by enzyme assay, is 1:29 among Ashkenazi Jews and 1:110 among Moroccan Jews. An elevated carrier frequency of 1:140 was also observed in the Iraqi Jews (IJ), while in other Israeli populations the world's pan-ethnic frequency of approximately 1:280 has been found. Recently a novel mutation, G749T, has been reported in 38.7% of the IJ carriers (24/62). Here we report a second novel HEXA mutation specific to the IJ TDS carriers: a substitution of cytosine 1351 by guanosine (C1351G), resulting in the change of leucine to valine in position 451. This mutation was found in 33.9% (21/62) of the carriers and in none of 100 non-carrier IJ. In addition to the two specific mutations, 14.5% (9/62) of the IJ carriers bear a known "Jewish" mutation (Ashkenazi or Moroccan) and 11.3% (7/62) carry a known "non-Jewish" mutation. In 1 DNA sample no mutation has yet been detected. To investigate the genetic history of the IJ-specific mutations (C1351G and G749T), the allelic distribution of four polymorphic markers (D15S131, D15S1025, D15S981, D15S1050) was analyzed in IJ heterozygotes and ethnically matched controls. Based on linkage disequilibrium, recombination factor (theta) between the markers and mutated loci, and the population growth correction, we deduced that G749T occurred in a founder ancestor 44.8 +/- 14.2 generations (g) ago [95% confidence interval (CI) 17.0-72.6 g] and C1351G arose 80.4 +/- 35.9 g ago (95% CI 44.5-116.3 g). Thus, the estimated dates for introduction of mutations are: 626 +/- 426 A.D. (200-1052 A.D.) for G749T and 442 +/- 1077 B.C. (1519 B.C. to 635 A.D.) for C1351G.

  18. Ecology and evolution of mammalian biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Kate E.; Safi, Kamran

    2011-01-01

    Mammals have incredible biological diversity, showing extreme flexibility in eco-morphology, physiology, life history and behaviour across their evolutionary history. Undoubtedly, mammals play an important role in ecosystems by providing essential services such as regulating insect populations, seed dispersal and pollination and act as indicators of general ecosystem health. However, the macroecological and macroevolutionary processes underpinning past and present biodiversity patterns are only beginning to be explored on a global scale. It is also particularly important, in the face of the global extinction crisis, to understand these processes in order to be able to use this knowledge to prevent future biodiversity loss and loss of ecosystem services. Unfortunately, efforts to understand mammalian biodiversity have been hampered by a lack of data. New data compilations on current species' distributions, ecologies and evolutionary histories now allow an integrated approach to understand this biodiversity. We review and synthesize these new studies, exploring the past and present ecology and evolution of mammalian biodiversity, and use these findings to speculate about the mammals of our future. PMID:21807728

  19. Genomic imprinting: a mammalian epigenetic discovery model.

    PubMed

    Barlow, Denise P

    2011-01-01

    Genomic imprinting is an epigenetic process leading to parental-specific expression of one to two percent of mammalian genes that offers one of the best model systems for a molecular analysis of epigenetic regulation in development and disease. In the twenty years since the first imprinted gene was identified, this model has had a significant impact on decoding epigenetic information in mammals. So far it has led to the discovery of long-range cis-acting control elements whose epigenetic state regulates small clusters of genes and of unusual macro noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs) that directly repress genes in cis, and critically, it has demonstrated that one biological role of DNA methylation is to allow expression of genes normally repressed by default. This review describes the progress in understanding how imprinted protein-coding genes are silenced; in particular, it focuses on the role of macro ncRNAs that have broad relevance as a potential new layer of regulatory information in the mammalian genome.

  20. Structure and function in mammalian societies

    PubMed Central

    Clutton-Brock, Tim

    2009-01-01

    Traditional interpretations of the evolution of animal societies have suggested that their structure is a consequence of attempts by individuals to maximize their inclusive fitness within constraints imposed by their social and physical environments. In contrast, some recent re-interpretations have argued that many aspects of social organization should be interpreted as group-level adaptations maintained by selection operating between groups or populations. Here, I review our current understanding of the evolution of mammalian societies, focusing, in particular, on the evolution of reproductive strategies in societies where one dominant female monopolizes reproduction in each group and her offspring are reared by other group members. Recent studies of the life histories of females in these species show that dispersing females often have little chance of establishing new breeding groups and so are likely to maximize their inclusive fitness by helping related dominants to rear their offspring. As in eusocial insects, increasing group size can lead to a progressive divergence in the selection pressures operating on breeders and helpers and to increasing specialization in their behaviour and life histories. As yet, there is little need to invoke group-level adaptations in order to account for the behaviour of individuals or the structure of mammalian groups. PMID:19805430

  1. The terminal DNA structure of mammalian chromosomes.

    PubMed Central

    McElligott, R; Wellinger, R J

    1997-01-01

    In virtually all eukaryotic organisms, telomeric DNA is composed of a variable number of short direct repeats. While the primary sequence of telomeric repeats has been determined for a great variety of species, the actual physical DNA structure at the ends of a bona fide metazoan chromosome with a centromere is unknown. It is shown here that an overhang of the strand forming the 3' ends of the chromosomes, the G-rich strand, is found at mammalian chromosome ends. Moreover, on at least some telomeres, the overhangs are > or = 45 bases long. Such surprisingly long overhangs were present on chromosomes derived from fully transformed tissue culture cells and normal G0-arrested peripheral leukocytes. Thus, irrespective of whether the cells were actively dividing or arrested, a very similar terminal DNA arrangement was found. These data suggest that the ends of mammalian and possibly all vertebrate chromosomes consist of an overhang of the G-rich strand and that these overhangs may be considerably larger than previously anticipated. PMID:9218811

  2. The Mammalian Ovary from Genesis to Revelation

    PubMed Central

    Edson, Mark A.; Nagaraja, Ankur K.; Matzuk, Martin M.

    2009-01-01

    Two major functions of the mammalian ovary are the production of germ cells (oocytes), which allow continuation of the species, and the generation of bioactive molecules, primarily steroids (mainly estrogens and progestins) and peptide growth factors, which are critical for ovarian function, regulation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-ovarian axis, and development of secondary sex characteristics. The female germline is created during embryogenesis when the precursors of primordial germ cells differentiate from somatic lineages of the embryo and take a unique route to reach the urogenital ridge. This undifferentiated gonad will differentiate along a female pathway, and the newly formed oocytes will proliferate and subsequently enter meiosis. At this point, the oocyte has two alternative fates: die, a common destiny of millions of oocytes, or be fertilized, a fate of at most approximately 100 oocytes, depending on the species. At every step from germline development and ovary formation to oogenesis and ovarian development and differentiation, there are coordinated interactions of hundreds of proteins and small RNAs. These studies have helped reproductive biologists to understand not only the normal functioning of the ovary but also the pathophysiology and genetics of diseases such as infertility and ovarian cancer. Over the last two decades, parallel progress has been made in the assisted reproductive technology clinic including better hormonal preparations, prenatal genetic testing, and optimal oocyte and embryo analysis and cryopreservation. Clearly, we have learned much about the mammalian ovary and manipulating its most important cargo, the oocyte, since the birth of Louise Brown over 30 yr ago. PMID:19776209

  3. An Adaptive Threshold in Mammalian Neocortical Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Kalinka, Alex T.; Tomancak, Pavel; Huttner, Wieland B.

    2014-01-01

    Expansion of the neocortex is a hallmark of human evolution. However, determining which adaptive mechanisms facilitated its expansion remains an open question. Here we show, using the gyrencephaly index (GI) and other physiological and life-history data for 102 mammalian species, that gyrencephaly is an ancestral mammalian trait. We find that variation in GI does not evolve linearly across species, but that mammals constitute two principal groups above and below a GI threshold value of 1.5, approximately equal to 109 neurons, which may be characterized by distinct constellations of physiological and life-history traits. By integrating data on neurogenic period, neuroepithelial founder pool size, cell-cycle length, progenitor-type abundances, and cortical neuron number into discrete mathematical models, we identify symmetric proliferative divisions of basal progenitors in the subventricular zone of the developing neocortex as evolutionarily necessary for generating a 14-fold increase in daily prenatal neuron production, traversal of the GI threshold, and thus establishment of two principal groups. We conclude that, despite considerable neuroanatomical differences, changes in the length of the neurogenic period alone, rather than any novel neurogenic progenitor lineage, are sufficient to explain differences in neuron number and neocortical size between species within the same principal group. PMID:25405475

  4. Redox regulation of mammalian sperm capacitation

    PubMed Central

    O’Flaherty, Cristian

    2015-01-01

    Capacitation is a series of morphological and metabolic changes necessary for the spermatozoon to achieve fertilizing ability. One of the earlier happenings during mammalian sperm capacitation is the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) that will trigger and regulate a series of events including protein phosphorylation, in a time-dependent fashion. The identity of the sperm oxidase responsible for the production of ROS involved in capacitation is still elusive, and several candidates are discussed in this review. Interestingly, ROS-induced ROS formation has been described during human sperm capacitation. Redox signaling during capacitation is associated with changes in thiol groups of proteins located on the plasma membrane and subcellular compartments of the spermatozoon. Both, oxidation of thiols forming disulfide bridges and the increase on thiol content are necessary to regulate different sperm proteins associated with capacitation. Reducing equivalents such as NADH and NADPH are necessary to support capacitation in many species including humans. Lactate dehydrogenase, glucose-6-phospohate dehydrogenase, and isocitrate dehydrogenase are responsible in supplying NAD (P) H for sperm capacitation. Peroxiredoxins (PRDXs) are newly described enzymes with antioxidant properties that can protect mammalian spermatozoa; however, they are also candidates for assuring the regulation of redox signaling required for sperm capacitation. The dysregulation of PRDXs and of enzymes needed for their reactivation such as thioredoxin/thioredoxin reductase system and glutathione-S-transferases impairs sperm motility, capacitation, and promotes DNA damage in spermatozoa leading to male infertility. PMID:25926608

  5. Kinetic Analysis of a Mammalian Phospholipase D

    PubMed Central

    Henage, Lee G.; Exton, John H.; Brown, H. Alex

    2013-01-01

    In mammalian cells, phospholipase D activity is tightly regulated by diverse cellular signals, including hormones, neurotransmitters, and growth factors. Multiple signaling pathways converge upon phospholipase D to modulate cellular actions, such as cell growth, shape, and secretion. We examined the kinetics of protein kinase C and G-protein regulation of mammalian phospholipase D1 (PLD1) in order to better understand interactions between PLD1 and its regulators. Activation by Arf-1, RhoA, Rac1, Cdc42, protein kinase Cα, and phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate displayed surface dilution kinetics, but these effectors modulated different kinetic parameters. PKCα activation of PLD1 involves N- and C-terminal PLD domains. Rho GTPases were binding activators, enhancing the catalytic efficiency of a purified PLD1 catalytic domain via effects on Km. Arf-1, a catalytic activator, stimulated PLD1 by enhancing the catalytic constant, kcat. A kinetic description of PLD1 activation by multiple modulators reveals a mechanism for apparent synergy between activators. Synergy was observed only when PLD1 was simultaneously stimulated by a binding activator and a catalytic activator. Surprisingly, synergistic activation was steeply dependent on phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate and phosphatidylcholine. Together, these findings suggest a role for PLD1 as a signaling node, in which integration of convergent signals occurs within discrete locales of the cellular membrane. PMID:16339153

  6. Ecological adaptation determines functional mammalian olfactory subgenomes

    PubMed Central

    Hayden, Sara; Bekaert, Michaël; Crider, Tess A.; Mariani, Stefano; Murphy, William J.; Teeling, Emma C.

    2010-01-01

    The ability to smell is governed by the largest gene family in mammalian genomes, the olfactory receptor (OR) genes. Although these genes are well annotated in the finished human and mouse genomes, we still do not understand which receptors bind specific odorants or how they fully function. Previous comparative studies have been taxonomically limited and mostly focused on the percentage of OR pseudogenes within species. No study has investigated the adaptive changes of functional OR gene families across phylogenetically and ecologically diverse mammals. To determine the extent to which OR gene repertoires have been influenced by habitat, sensory specialization, and other ecological traits, to better understand the functional importance of specific OR gene families and thus the odorants they bind, we compared the functional OR gene repertoires from 50 mammalian genomes. We amplified more than 2000 OR genes in aquatic, semi-aquatic, and flying mammals and coupled these data with 48,000 OR genes from mostly terrestrial mammals, extracted from genomic projects. Phylogenomic, Bayesian assignment, and principle component analyses partitioned species by ecotype (aquatic, semi-aquatic, terrestrial, flying) rather than phylogenetic relatedness, and identified OR families important for each habitat. Functional OR gene repertoires were reduced independently in the multiple origins of aquatic mammals and were significantly divergent in bats. We reject recent neutralist views of olfactory subgenome evolution and correlate specific OR gene families with physiological requirements, a preliminary step toward unraveling the relationship between specific odors and respective OR gene families. PMID:19952139

  7. Ballistic transfection of mammalian cells in vivo

    SciTech Connect

    Kolesnikov, V.A.; Zelenin, A.V.; Zelenina, I.A.

    1995-11-01

    The method of ballistic transfection initially proposed for genetic transformation of plants was used for animal cells in vitro and in situ. The method consists in bombarding the transfected cells with microparticles of heavy metals carrying foreign DNA. Penetrating the cell nucleus, the microparticles transport the introduced gene. Successful genetic transformation of the cultured mouse cells and fish embryos was realized, and this allowed the study of mammalian cells in situ. The performed studies allowed us to demonstrate expression of the reporter genes of chloramphenicol acetyltransferase, galactosidase, and neomycin phosphotransferase in the mouse liver, mammary gland and kidney explants, in the liver and cross-striated muscle of mouse and rat in situ, and in developing mouse embryos at the stages of two-cell embryo, morula, and blastocyst. All these genes were introduced by ballistic transfection. In the liver and cross-striated muscle the transgene activity was detected within two to three months after transfection. Thus, the ballistic introduction of the foreign genes in the cells in situ was demonstrated, and this opens possibilities for the use of this method in gene therapy. Methodical aspects of the bombarding and transfection are considered in detail, and the published data on transfection and genetic transformation of mammalian cells are discussed. 41 refs., 13 figs., 1 tab.

  8. Catabolic flexibility of mammalian-associated lactobacilli

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Metabolic flexibility may be generally defined as “the capacity for the organism to adapt fuel oxidation to fuel availability”. The metabolic diversification strategies used by individual bacteria vary greatly from the use of novel or acquired enzymes to the use of plasmid-localised genes and transporters. In this review, we describe the ability of lactobacilli to utilise a variety of carbon sources from their current or new environments in order to grow and survive. The genus Lactobacillus now includes more than 150 species, many with adaptive capabilities, broad metabolic capacity and species/strain variance. They are therefore, an informative example of a cell factory capable of adapting to new niches with differing nutritional landscapes. Indeed, lactobacilli naturally colonise and grow in a wide variety of environmental niches which include the roots and foliage of plants, silage, various fermented foods and beverages, the human vagina and the mammalian gastrointestinal tract (GIT; including the mouth, stomach, small intestine and large intestine). Here we primarily describe the metabolic flexibility of some lactobacilli isolated from the mammalian gastrointestinal tract, and we also describe some of the food-associated species with a proven ability to adapt to the GIT. As examples this review concentrates on the following species - Lb. plantarum, Lb. acidophilus, Lb. ruminis, Lb. salivarius, Lb. reuteri and Lb. sakei, to highlight the diversity and inter-relationships between the catabolic nature of species within the genus. PMID:23680304

  9. Focusing on RISC assembly in mammalian cells

    SciTech Connect

    Hong Junmei; Wei Na; Chalk, Alistair; Wang Jue; Song, Yutong; Yi Fan; Qiao Renping; Sonnhammer, Erik L.L.; Wahlestedt, Claes; Liang Zicai Du, Quan

    2008-04-11

    RISC (RNA-induced silencing complex) is a central protein complex in RNAi, into which a siRNA strand is assembled to become effective in gene silencing. By using an in vitro RNAi reaction based on Drosophila embryo extract, an asymmetric model was recently proposed for RISC assembly of siRNA strands, suggesting that the strand that is more loosely paired at its 5' end is selectively assembled into RISC and results in target gene silencing. However, in the present study, we were unable to establish such a correlation in cell-based RNAi assays, as well as in large-scale RNAi data analyses. This suggests that the thermodynamic stability of siRNA is not a major determinant of gene silencing in mammalian cells. Further studies on fork siRNAs showed that mismatch at the 5' end of the siRNA sense strand decreased RISC assembly of the antisense strand, but surprisingly did not increase RISC assembly of the sense strand. More interestingly, measurements of melting temperature showed that the terminal stability of fork siRNAs correlated with the positions of the mismatches, but not gene silencing efficacy. In summary, our data demonstrate that there is no definite correlation between siRNA stability and gene silencing in mammalian cells, which suggests that instead of thermodynamic stability, other features of the siRNA duplex contribute to RISC assembly in RNAi.

  10. Larger Mammalian Body Size Leads to Lower Retroviral Activity

    PubMed Central

    Katzourakis, Aris; Magiorkinis, Gkikas; Lim, Aaron G.; Gupta, Sunetra; Belshaw, Robert; Gifford, Robert

    2014-01-01

    Retroviruses have been infecting mammals for at least 100 million years, leaving descendants in host genomes known as endogenous retroviruses (ERVs). The abundance of ERVs is partly determined by their mode of replication, but it has also been suggested that host life history traits could enhance or suppress their activity. We show that larger bodied species have lower levels of ERV activity by reconstructing the rate of ERV integration across 38 mammalian species. Body size explains 37% of the variance in ERV integration rate over the last 10 million years, controlling for the effect of confounding due to other life history traits. Furthermore, 68% of the variance in the mean age of ERVs per genome can also be explained by body size. These results indicate that body size limits the number of recently replicating ERVs due to their detrimental effects on their host. To comprehend the possible mechanistic links between body size and ERV integration we built a mathematical model, which shows that ERV abundance is favored by lower body size and higher horizontal transmission rates. We argue that because retroviral integration is tumorigenic, the negative correlation between body size and ERV numbers results from the necessity to reduce the risk of cancer, under the assumption that this risk scales positively with body size. Our model also fits the empirical observation that the lifetime risk of cancer is relatively invariant among mammals regardless of their body size, known as Peto's paradox, and indicates that larger bodied mammals may have evolved mechanisms to limit ERV activity. PMID:25033295

  11. Expression of mammalian membrane proteins in mammalian cells using Semliki Forest virus vectors.

    PubMed

    Lundstrom, Kenneth

    2010-01-01

    One of the major bottlenecks in drug screening and structural biology on membrane proteins has for a long time been the expression of recombinant protein in sufficient quality and quantity. The expression has been evaluated in all existing expression systems, from cell-free translation and bacterial systems to expression in animal cells. In contrast to soluble proteins, the expression levels have been relatively low due to the following reasons: The topology of membrane proteins requires special, posttranslational processing, folding, and insertion into membranes, which often are mammalian cell specific. Despite these strict demands, functional membrane proteins (G protein-coupled receptors, ion channels, and transporters) have been successfully expressed in bacterial, yeast, and insect cells. A general drawback observed in prokaryotic cells is that accumulation of foreign protein in membranes is toxic and results in growth arrest and therefore low yields of recombinant protein.In this chapter, the focus is on expression of recombinant mammalian membrane proteins in mammalian host cells, particularly applying Semliki Forest virus (SFV) vectors. Replication-deficient SFV vectors are rapidly generated at high titers in BHK-21 (Baby Hamster Kidney) cells, which then are applied for a broad range of mammalian and nonmammalian cells. The SFV system has provided high expression levels of topologically different proteins, especially for membrane proteins. Robust ligand-binding assays and functional coupling to G proteins and electrophysiological recordings have made the SFV system an attractive tool in drug discovery. Furthermore, the high susceptibility of SFV vectors to primary neurons has allowed various applications in neuroscience. Establishment of large-scale production in mammalian adherent and suspension cultures has allowed production of hundreds of milligrams of membrane proteins that has allowed their submission to serious structural biology approaches. In this

  12. Augmented Likelihood Image Reconstruction.

    PubMed

    Stille, Maik; Kleine, Matthias; Hägele, Julian; Barkhausen, Jörg; Buzug, Thorsten M

    2016-01-01

    The presence of high-density objects remains an open problem in medical CT imaging. Data of projections passing through objects of high density, such as metal implants, are dominated by noise and are highly affected by beam hardening and scatter. Reconstructed images become less diagnostically conclusive because of pronounced artifacts that manifest as dark and bright streaks. A new reconstruction algorithm is proposed with the aim to reduce these artifacts by incorporating information about shape and known attenuation coefficients of a metal implant. Image reconstruction is considered as a variational optimization problem. The afore-mentioned prior knowledge is introduced in terms of equality constraints. An augmented Lagrangian approach is adapted in order to minimize the associated log-likelihood function for transmission CT. During iterations, temporally appearing artifacts are reduced with a bilateral filter and new projection values are calculated, which are used later on for the reconstruction. A detailed evaluation in cooperation with radiologists is performed on software and hardware phantoms, as well as on clinically relevant patient data of subjects with various metal implants. Results show that the proposed reconstruction algorithm is able to outperform contemporary metal artifact reduction methods such as normalized metal artifact reduction.

  13. Mammalian social odours: attraction and individual recognition

    PubMed Central

    Brennan, Peter A; Kendrick, Keith M

    2006-01-01

    Mammalian social systems rely on signals passed between individuals conveying information including sex, reproductive status, individual identity, ownership, competitive ability and health status. Many of these signals take the form of complex mixtures of molecules sensed by chemosensory systems and have important influences on a variety of behaviours that are vital for reproductive success, such as parent–offspring attachment, mate choice and territorial marking. This article aims to review the nature of these chemosensory cues and the neural pathways mediating their physiological and behavioural effects. Despite the complexities of mammalian societies, there are instances where single molecules can act as classical pheromones attracting interest and approach behaviour. Chemosignals with relatively high volatility can be used to signal at a distance and are sensed by the main olfactory system. Most mammals also possess a vomeronasal system, which is specialized to detect relatively non-volatile chemosensory cues following direct contact. Single attractant molecules are sensed by highly specific receptors using a labelled line pathway. These act alongside more complex mixtures of signals that are required to signal individual identity. There are multiple sources of such individuality chemosignals, based on the highly polymorphic genes of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) or lipocalins such as the mouse major urinary proteins. The individual profile of volatile components that make up an individual odour signature can be sensed by the main olfactory system, as the pattern of activity across an array of broadly tuned receptor types. In addition, the vomeronasal system can respond highly selectively to non-volatile peptide ligands associated with the MHC, acting at the V2r class of vomeronasal receptor. The ability to recognize individuals or their genetic relatedness plays an important role in mammalian social behaviour. Thus robust systems for olfactory

  14. Lateral Abdominal Wall Reconstruction

    PubMed Central

    Baumann, Donald P.; Butler, Charles E.

    2012-01-01

    Lateral abdominal wall (LAW) defects can manifest as a flank hernias, myofascial laxity/bulges, or full-thickness defects. These defects are quite different from those in the anterior abdominal wall defects and the complexity and limited surgical options make repairing the LAW a challenge for the reconstructive surgeon. LAW reconstruction requires an understanding of the anatomy, physiologic forces, and the impact of deinnervation injury to design and perform successful reconstructions of hernia, bulge, and full-thickness defects. Reconstructive strategies must be tailored to address the inguinal ligament, retroperitoneum, chest wall, and diaphragm. Operative technique must focus on stabilization of the LAW to nonyielding points of fixation at the anatomic borders of the LAW far beyond the musculofascial borders of the defect itself. Thus, hernias, bulges, and full-thickness defects are approached in a similar fashion. Mesh reinforcement is uniformly required in lateral abdominal wall reconstruction. Inlay mesh placement with overlying myofascial coverage is preferred as a first-line option as is the case in anterior abdominal wall reconstruction. However, interposition bridging repairs are often performed as the surrounding myofascial tissue precludes a dual layered closure. The decision to place bioprosthetic or prosthetic mesh depends on surgeon preference, patient comorbidities, and clinical factors of the repair. Regardless of mesh type, the overlying soft tissue must provide stable cutaneous coverage and obliteration of dead space. In cases where the fasciocutaneous flaps surrounding the defect are inadequate for closure, regional pedicled flaps or free flaps are recruited to achieve stable soft tissue coverage. PMID:23372458

  15. Using digital inline holographic microscopy and quantitative phase contrast imaging to assess viability of cultured mammalian cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Missan, Sergey; Hrytsenko, Olga

    2015-03-01

    Digital inline holographic microscopy was used to record holograms of mammalian cells (HEK293, B16, and E0771) in culture. The holograms have been reconstructed using Octopus software (4Deep inwater imaging) and phase shift maps were unwrapped using the FFT-based phase unwrapping algorithm. The unwrapped phase shifts were used to determine the maximum phase shifts in individual cells. Addition of 0.5 mM H2O2 to cell media produced rapid rounding of cultured cells, followed by cell membrane rupture. The cell morphology changes and cell membrane ruptures were detected in real time and were apparent in the unwrapped phase shift images. The results indicate that quantitative phase contrast imaging produced by the digital inline holographic microscope can be used for the label-free real time automated determination of cell viability and confluence in mammalian cell cultures.

  16. Reconstructing the astronomical heritage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Planesas, Pere

    2011-06-01

    Studies of the astronomical heritage can deal with the ancient astronomical knowledge, traditions and myths, as well as with old instruments and observatories. It is urgent to work for their recovery, before they are definitely forgoten, lost or destroyed. On the cultural side, the Joint ALMA Observatory is sponsoring the study of the local cosmology and sky of the indigenous people living in the region where ALMA is currently being build. In the case of ancient instruments, several success stories already exist, the most recent one being the reconstruction of the Madrid 25ft Herschel telescope. Examples of notable instruments pending reconstruction are listed.

  17. Upper Eyelid Reconstruction.

    PubMed

    Espinoza, Gabriela Mabel; Prost, Angela Michelle

    2016-05-01

    Reconstruction of the upper eyelid is complicated because the eyelid must retain mobility, flexibility, function, and a suitable mucosal surface over the delicate cornea. Defects of the upper eyelid may be due to congenital defects or traumatic injury or follow oncologic resection. This article focuses on reconstruction due to loss of tissue. Multiple surgeries may be needed to reach the desired results, addressing loss of tissue and then loss of function. Each defect is unique and the laxity and availability of surrounding tissue vary. Knowing the most common techniques for repair assists surgeons in the multifaceted planning that takes place.

  18. A Gradualist Scenario for Language Evolution: Precise Linguistic Reconstruction of Early Human (and Neandertal) Grammars.

    PubMed

    Progovac, Ljiljana

    2016-01-01

    In making an argument for the antiquity of language, based on comparative evidence, Dediu and Levinson (2013) express hope that some combinations of structural features will prove so conservative that they will allow deep linguistic reconstruction. I propose that the earliest stages of syntax/grammar as reconstructed in Progovac (2015a), based on a theoretical and data-driven linguistic analysis, provide just such a conservative platform, which would have been commanded also by Neandertals and the common ancestor. I provide a fragment of this proto-grammar, which includes flat verb-noun compounds used for naming and insult (e.g., rattle-snake, cry-baby, scatter-brain), and paratactic (loose) combinations of such flat structures (e.g., Come one, come all; You seek, you find). This flat, binary, paratactic platform is found in all languages, and can be shown to serve as foundation for any further structure building. However, given the degree and nature of variation across languages in elaborating syntax beyond this proto-stage, I propose that hierarchical syntax did not emerge once and uniformly in all its complexity, but rather multiple times, either within Africa, or after dispersion from Africa. If so, then, under the uniregional hypothesis, our common ancestor with Neandertals, H. heidelbergensis, could not have commanded hierarchical syntax, but "only" the proto-grammar. Linguistic reconstructions of this kind are necessary for formulating precise and testable hypotheses regarding language evolution. In addition to the hominin timeline, this reconstruction can also engage, and negotiate between, the fields of neuroscience and genetics, as I illustrate with one specific scenario involving FOXP2 gene.

  19. A Gradualist Scenario for Language Evolution: Precise Linguistic Reconstruction of Early Human (and Neandertal) Grammars

    PubMed Central

    Progovac, Ljiljana

    2016-01-01

    In making an argument for the antiquity of language, based on comparative evidence, Dediu and Levinson (2013) express hope that some combinations of structural features will prove so conservative that they will allow deep linguistic reconstruction. I propose that the earliest stages of syntax/grammar as reconstructed in Progovac (2015a), based on a theoretical and data-driven linguistic analysis, provide just such a conservative platform, which would have been commanded also by Neandertals and the common ancestor. I provide a fragment of this proto-grammar, which includes flat verb-noun compounds used for naming and insult (e.g., rattle-snake, cry-baby, scatter-brain), and paratactic (loose) combinations of such flat structures (e.g., Come one, come all; You seek, you find). This flat, binary, paratactic platform is found in all languages, and can be shown to serve as foundation for any further structure building. However, given the degree and nature of variation across languages in elaborating syntax beyond this proto-stage, I propose that hierarchical syntax did not emerge once and uniformly in all its complexity, but rather multiple times, either within Africa, or after dispersion from Africa. If so, then, under the uniregional hypothesis, our common ancestor with Neandertals, H. heidelbergensis, could not have commanded hierarchical syntax, but “only” the proto-grammar. Linguistic reconstructions of this kind are necessary for formulating precise and testable hypotheses regarding language evolution. In addition to the hominin timeline, this reconstruction can also engage, and negotiate between, the fields of neuroscience and genetics, as I illustrate with one specific scenario involving FOXP2 gene. PMID:27877146

  20. Predictive chromatin signatures in the mammalian genome

    PubMed Central

    Hon, Gary C.; Hawkins, R. David; Ren, Bing

    2009-01-01

    The DNA sequence of an organism is a blueprint of life: it harbors not only the information about proteins and other molecules produced in each cell, but also instructions on when and where such molecules are made. Chromatin, the structure of histone and DNA that has co-evolved with eukaryotic genome, also contains information that indicates the function and activity of the underlying DNA sequences. Such information exists in the form of covalent modifications to the histone proteins that comprise the nucleosome. Thanks to the development of high throughput technologies such as DNA microarrays and next generation DNA sequencing, we have begun to associate the various combinations of chromatin modification patterns with functional sequences in the human genome. Here, we review the rapid progress from descriptive observations of histone modification profiles to highly predictive models enabling use of chromatin signatures to enumerate novel functional sequences in mammalian genomes that have escaped previous detection. PMID:19808796

  1. Regulation of Rap GTPases in mammalian neurons.

    PubMed

    Shah, Bhavin; Püschel, Andreas W

    2016-10-01

    Small GTPases are central regulators of many cellular processes. The highly conserved Rap GTPases perform essential functions in the mammalian nervous system during development and in mature neurons. During neocortical development, Rap1 is required to regulate cadherin- and integrin-mediated adhesion. In the adult nervous system Rap1 and Rap2 regulate the maturation and plasticity of dendritic spine and synapses. Although genetic studies have revealed important roles of Rap GTPases in neurons, their regulation by guanine nucleotide exchange factors (GEFs) that activate them and GTPase activating proteins (GAPs) that inactivate them by stimulating their intrinsic GTPase activity is just beginning to be explored in vivo. Here we review how GEFs and GAPs regulate Rap GTPases in the nervous system with a focus on their in vivo function.

  2. Cenozoic climate change influences mammalian evolutionary dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Figueirido, Borja; Janis, Christine M.; Pérez-Claros, Juan A.; De Renzi, Miquel; Palmqvist, Paul

    2012-01-01

    Global climate change is having profound impacts on the natural world. However, climate influence on faunal dynamics at macroevolutionary scales remains poorly understood. In this paper we investigate the influence of climate over deep time on the diversity patterns of Cenozoic North American mammals. We use factor analysis to identify temporally correlated assemblages of taxa, or major evolutionary faunas that we can then study in relation to climatic change over the past 65 million years. These taxa can be grouped into six consecutive faunal associations that show some correspondence with the qualitative mammalian chronofaunas of previous workers. We also show that the diversity pattern of most of these chronofaunas can be correlated with the stacked deep-sea benthic foraminiferal oxygen isotope (δ18O) curve, which strongly suggests climatic forcing of faunal dynamics over a large macroevolutionary timescale. This study demonstrates the profound influence of climate on the diversity patterns of North American terrestrial mammals over the Cenozoic. PMID:22203974

  3. Chemical analysis of individual mammalian cells

    SciTech Connect

    Tan, W.; Yeung, E.S.

    1994-12-31

    The extremely small size of mammalian cells creates an unusual challenge for the analytical chemist, both in terms of separation and detection. Under a microscope, it is possible to confirm the injection of individual cells such as erythrocyte into capillaries with 10-{mu}m i.d. by hydrostatic pressure. The ionic contents can then be separated by capillary electrophoresis after the cell lyses. Enzymes at the zeptomole level can be monitored by on-column fluorescence enzyme assay. On-column particle-counting immunoassay can be applied to a broad range of analytes (antigens), also at the zeptomole level. The authors report here the simultaneous determination of the amounts of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PDH) and their activities in individual erythrocytes by using a combination of the two detection schemes. Insights into the degradation of proteins as a function of cell age can be derived.

  4. Global Epigenomic Reconfiguration During Mammalian Brain Development

    PubMed Central

    Nery, Joseph R.; Urich, Mark; Puddifoot, Clare A.; Johnson, Nicholas D.; Lucero, Jacinta; Huang, Yun; Dwork, Andrew J.; Schultz, Matthew D.; Yu, Miao; Tonti-Filippini, Julian; Heyn, Holger; Hu, Shijun; Wu, Joseph C.; Rao, Anjana; Esteller, Manel; He, Chuan; Haghighi, Fatemeh G.; Sejnowski, Terrence J.; Behrens, M. Margarita; Ecker, Joseph R.

    2013-01-01

    DNA methylation is implicated in mammalian brain development and plasticity underlying learning and memory. We report the genome-wide composition, patterning, cell specificity, and dynamics of DNA methylation at single-base resolution in human and mouse frontal cortex throughout their lifespan. Widespread methylome reconfiguration occurs during fetal to young adult development, coincident with synaptogenesis. During this period, highly conserved non-CG methylation (mCH) accumulates in neurons, but not glia, to become the dominant form of methylation in the human neuronal genome. Moreover, we found an mCH signature that identifies genes escaping X-chromosome inactivation. Last, whole-genome single-base resolution 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (hmC) maps revealed that hmC marks fetal brain cell genomes at putative regulatory regions that are CG-demethylated and activated in the adult brain and that CG demethylation at these hmC-poised loci depends on Tet2 activity. PMID:23828890

  5. Crystal structure of mammalian acid sphingomyelinase

    PubMed Central

    Gorelik, Alexei; Illes, Katalin; Heinz, Leonhard X.; Superti-Furga, Giulio; Nagar, Bhushan

    2016-01-01

    Acid sphingomyelinase (ASMase, ASM, SMPD1) converts sphingomyelin into ceramide, modulating membrane properties and signal transduction. Inactivating mutations in ASMase cause Niemann–Pick disease, and its inhibition is also beneficial in models of depression and cancer. To gain a better understanding of this critical therapeutic target, we determined crystal structures of mammalian ASMase in various conformations. The catalytic domain adopts a calcineurin-like fold with two zinc ions and a hydrophobic track leading to the active site. Strikingly, the membrane interacting saposin domain assumes either a closed globular conformation independent from the catalytic domain, or an open conformation, which establishes an interface with the catalytic domain essential for activity. Structural mapping of Niemann–Pick mutations reveals that most of them likely destabilize the protein's fold. This study sheds light on the molecular mechanism of ASMase function, and provides a platform for the rational development of ASMase inhibitors and therapeutic use of recombinant ASMase. PMID:27435900

  6. Genetic reassortment of mammalian reoviruses in mice.

    PubMed Central

    Wenske, E A; Chanock, S J; Krata, L; Fields, B N

    1985-01-01

    Reassortments between type 1 (Lang) and type 3 (Dearing) reoviruses were isolated from suckling mice infected perorally with an inoculum containing both type 1 and type 3 viruses. A total of five distinct reassortants (designated as E1 through E5) were isolated from animals during the course of the experiment. Two reassortants (E1 and E2) represented the majority of the reassortants isolated. The majority of genes of types E1 and E2 were derived from type 1 (Lang). However, E1 had an M2 gene and an S1 gene derived from type 3 (Dearing), while E2 had M2 and S2 genes derived from type 3 (Dearing). Thus, nonrandom reassortment between mammalian reoviruses can be demonstrated in vivo. PMID:4057359

  7. Fundamentals of Expression in Mammalian Cells.

    PubMed

    Dyson, Michael R

    2016-01-01

    Expression of proteins in mammalian cells is a key technology important for many functional studies on human and higher eukaryotic genes. Studies include the mapping of protein interactions, solving protein structure by crystallization and X-ray diffraction or solution phase NMR and the generation of antibodies to enable a range of studies to be performed including protein detection in vivo. In addition the production of therapeutic proteins and antibodies, now a multi billion dollar industry, has driven major advances in cell line engineering for the production of grams per liter of active proteins and antibodies. Here the key factors that need to be considered for successful expression in HEK293 and CHO cells are reviewed including host cells, expression vector design, transient transfection methods, stable cell line generation and cultivation conditions.

  8. Mammalian protein glycosylation--structure versus function.

    PubMed

    Defaus, S; Gupta, P; Andreu, D; Gutiérrez-Gallego, R

    2014-06-21

    Carbohydrates fulfil many common as well as extremely important functions in nature. They show a variety of molecular displays--e.g., free mono-, oligo-, and polysaccharides, glycolipids, proteoglycans, glycoproteins, etc.--with particular roles and localizations in living organisms. Structure-specific peculiarities are so many and diverse that it becomes virtually impossible to cover them all from an analytical perspective. Hence this manuscript, focused on mammalian glycosylation, rather than a complete list of analytical descriptors or recognized functions for carbohydrate structures, comprehensively reviews three central issues in current glycoscience, namely (i) structural analysis of glycoprotein glycans, covering both classical and novel approaches for teasing out the structural puzzle as well as potential pitfalls of these processes; (ii) an overview of functions attributed to carbohydrates, covering from monosaccharide to complex, well-defined epitopes and full glycans, including post-glycosylational modifications, and (iii) recent technical advances allowing structural identification of glycoprotein glycans with simultaneous assignation of biological functions.

  9. [Thiamine triphosphatase activity in mammalian mitochondria].

    PubMed

    Rusina, I M; Makarchikov, A F

    2003-01-01

    Mitochondrial preparations isolated from bovine kidney and brain as well as the liver and the brain of rat show thiamine triphosphatase (ThTPase) activity. The activity was determined from the particles by freezing-thawing suggesting that a soluble enzyme is involved. The liberation patterns of ThTPase and marker enzyme activities from mitochondria under osmotic shock or treatment with increasing Triton X-100 concentrations indicate the presence of ThTPase both in the matrix and intermembrane space. It was found, basing on gel filtration behavior, that the mitochondrial ThTPase has the same molecular mass as specific cytosolic ThTPase (EC 3.6.1.28). The enzymes, however, were clearly distinguishable in Km values, the mitochondrial one showing a higher apparent affinity for substrate. These results imply the existence of ThTPase multiple forms in mammalian cells.

  10. Mammalian telomeres and their partnership with lamins

    PubMed Central

    Burla, Romina; La Torre, Mattia; Saggio, Isabella

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Chromosome ends are complex structures, which require a panel of factors for their elongation, replication, and protection. We describe here the mechanics of mammalian telomeres, dynamics and maintainance in relation to lamins. Multiple biochemical connections, including association of telomeres to the nuclear envelope and matrix, of telomeric proteins to lamins, and of lamin-associated proteins to chromosome ends, underline the interplay between lamins and telomeres. Paths toward senescence, such as defective telomere replication, altered heterochromatin organization, and impaired DNA repair, are common to lamins' and telomeres' dysfunction. The convergence of phenotypes can be interpreted through a model of dynamic, lamin-controlled functional platforms dedicated to the function of telomeres as fragile sites. The features of telomeropathies and laminopathies, and of animal models underline further overlapping aspects, including the alteration of stem cell compartments. We expect that future studies of basic biology and on aging will benefit from the analysis of this telomere-lamina interplay. PMID:27116558

  11. Differential Light Scattering from Spherical Mammalian Cells

    PubMed Central

    Brunsting, Albert; Mullaney, Paul F.

    1974-01-01

    The differential scattered light intensity patterns of spherical mammalian cells were measured with a new photometer which uses high-speed film as the light detector. The scattering objects, interphase and mitotic Chinese hamster ovary cells and HeLa cells, were modeled as (a) a coated sphere, accounting for nucleus and cytoplasm, and (b) a homogeneous sphere when no cellular nucleus was present. The refractive indices and size distribution of the cells were measured for an accurate comparison of the theoretical model with the light-scattering measurements. The light scattered beyond the forward direction is found to contain information about internal cellular morphology, provided the size distribution of the cells is not too broad. ImagesFIGURE 1 PMID:4134589

  12. Trapping mammalian protein complexes in viral particles

    PubMed Central

    Eyckerman, Sven; Titeca, Kevin; Van Quickelberghe, Emmy; Cloots, Eva; Verhee, Annick; Samyn, Noortje; De Ceuninck, Leentje; Timmerman, Evy; De Sutter, Delphine; Lievens, Sam; Van Calenbergh, Serge; Gevaert, Kris; Tavernier, Jan

    2016-01-01

    Cell lysis is an inevitable step in classical mass spectrometry–based strategies to analyse protein complexes. Complementary lysis conditions, in situ cross-linking strategies and proximal labelling techniques are currently used to reduce lysis effects on the protein complex. We have developed Virotrap, a viral particle sorting approach that obviates the need for cell homogenization and preserves the protein complexes during purification. By fusing a bait protein to the HIV-1 GAG protein, we show that interaction partners become trapped within virus-like particles (VLPs) that bud from mammalian cells. Using an efficient VLP enrichment protocol, Virotrap allows the detection of known binary interactions and MS-based identification of novel protein partners as well. In addition, we show the identification of stimulus-dependent interactions and demonstrate trapping of protein partners for small molecules. Virotrap constitutes an elegant complementary approach to the arsenal of methods to study protein complexes. PMID:27122307

  13. The Evolution of Mammalian Olfactory Receptor Genes

    PubMed Central

    Issel-Tarver, L.; Rine, J.

    1997-01-01

    We performed a comparative study of four subfamilies of olfactory receptor genes first identified in the dog to assess changes in the gene family during mammalian evolution, and to begin linking the dog genetic map to that of humans. The human subfamilies were localized to chromosomes 7, 11, and 19. The two subfamilies that were tightly linked in the dog genome were also tightly linked in the human genome. The four subfamilies were compared in human (primate), horse (perissodactyl), and a variety of artiodactyls and carnivores. Some changes in gene number were detected, but overall subfamily size appeared to have been established before the divergence of these mammals 60-100 million years ago. PMID:9017400

  14. Mammalian Autophagy: How Does It Work?

    PubMed

    Bento, Carla F; Renna, Maurizio; Ghislat, Ghita; Puri, Claudia; Ashkenazi, Avraham; Vicinanza, Mariella; Menzies, Fiona M; Rubinsztein, David C

    2016-06-02

    Autophagy is a conserved intracellular pathway that delivers cytoplasmic contents to lysosomes for degradation via double-membrane autophagosomes. Autophagy substrates include organelles such as mitochondria, aggregate-prone proteins that cause neurodegeneration and various pathogens. Thus, this pathway appears to be relevant to the pathogenesis of diverse diseases, and its modulation may have therapeutic value. Here, we focus on the cell and molecular biology of mammalian autophagy and review the key proteins that regulate the process by discussing their roles and how these may be modulated by posttranslational modifications. We consider the membrane-trafficking events that impact autophagy and the questions relating to the sources of autophagosome membrane(s). Finally, we discuss data from structural studies and some of the insights these have provided.

  15. Cenozoic climate change influences mammalian evolutionary dynamics.

    PubMed

    Figueirido, Borja; Janis, Christine M; Pérez-Claros, Juan A; De Renzi, Miquel; Palmqvist, Paul

    2012-01-17

    Global climate change is having profound impacts on the natural world. However, climate influence on faunal dynamics at macroevolutionary scales remains poorly understood. In this paper we investigate the influence of climate over deep time on the diversity patterns of Cenozoic North American mammals. We use factor analysis to identify temporally correlated assemblages of taxa, or major evolutionary faunas that we can then study in relation to climatic change over the past 65 million years. These taxa can be grouped into six consecutive faunal associations that show some correspondence with the qualitative mammalian chronofaunas of previous workers. We also show that the diversity pattern of most of these chronofaunas can be correlated with the stacked deep-sea benthic foraminiferal oxygen isotope (δ(18)O) curve, which strongly suggests climatic forcing of faunal dynamics over a large macroevolutionary timescale. This study demonstrates the profound influence of climate on the diversity patterns of North American terrestrial mammals over the Cenozoic.

  16. Signaling mechanisms in mammalian myoblast fusion.

    PubMed

    Hindi, Sajedah M; Tajrishi, Marjan M; Kumar, Ashok

    2013-04-23

    Myoblast fusion is a critical process that contributes to the growth of muscle during development and to the regeneration of myofibers upon injury. Myoblasts fuse with each other as well as with multinucleated myotubes to enlarge the myofiber. Initial studies demonstrated that myoblast fusion requires extracellular calcium and changes in cell membrane topography and cytoskeletal organization. More recent studies have identified several cell-surface and intracellular proteins that mediate myoblast fusion. Furthermore, emerging evidence suggests that myoblast fusion is also regulated by the activation of specific cell-signaling pathways that lead to the expression of genes whose products are essential for the fusion process and for modulating the activity of molecules that are involved in cytoskeletal rearrangement. Here, we review the roles of the major signaling pathways in mammalian myoblast fusion.

  17. Mechanism of protein biosynthesis in mammalian mitochondria.

    PubMed

    Christian, Brooke E; Spremulli, Linda L

    2012-01-01

    Protein synthesis in mammalian mitochondria produces 13 proteins that are essential subunits of the oxidative phosphorylation complexes. This review provides a detailed outline of each phase of mitochondrial translation including initiation, elongation, termination, and ribosome recycling. The roles of essential proteins involved in each phase are described. All of the products of mitochondrial protein synthesis in mammals are inserted into the inner membrane. Several proteins that may help bind ribosomes to the membrane during translation are described, although much remains to be learned about this process. Mutations in mitochondrial or nuclear genes encoding components of the translation system often lead to severe deficiencies in oxidative phosphorylation, and a summary of these mutations is provided. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Mitochondrial Gene Expression.

  18. Studies on the mammalian toxicity of fenthion*

    PubMed Central

    Francis, Jean I.; Barnes, J. M.

    1963-01-01

    This paper constitutes a report on mammalian toxicological investigations of fen hion, carried out as part of the WHO malaria eradication programme, and on the conclusions drawn from them. Fenthion is found to be of intermediate toxicity to the four rodent species studied. In rats the signs of poisoning develop rather slowly but persist for several days, male rats being more susceptible than females, whereas for most phosphorothionates the converse is true. The results suggest that fenthion is not simply oxidized from the P=S compound to the P=O. It has been stated that the sulfoxide and sulfone are produced before the P=S→P=O oxidation takes place, but experiments suggest that further changes are involved. The findings are discussed in relation to the possible health hazard that might be encountered by those who have to apply fenthion as a residual spray. PMID:14056272

  19. KN-93 inhibits IKr in mammalian cardiomyocytes

    PubMed Central

    Hegyi, Bence; Chen-Izu, Ye; Jian, Zhong; Shimkunas, Rafael; Izu, Leighton T.; Banyasz, Tamas

    2015-01-01

    Calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII) inhibitor KN-93 is widely used in multiple fields of cardiac research especially for studying the mechanisms of cardiomyopathy and cardiac arrhythmias. Whereas KN-93 is a potent inhibitor of CaMKII, several off-target effects have also been found in expression cell systems and smooth muscle cells, but there is no information on the KN93 side effects in mammalian ventricular myocytes. In this study we explore the effect of KN-93 on the rapid component of delayed rectifier potassium current (IKr) in the ventricular myocytes from rabbit and guinea pig hearts. Our data indicate that KN-93 exerts direct inhibitory effect on IKr that is not mediated via CaMKII. This off-target effect of KN93 should be taken into account when interpreting the data from using KN93 to investigate the role of CaMKII in cardiac function. PMID:26463508

  20. KN-93 inhibits IKr in mammalian cardiomyocytes.

    PubMed

    Hegyi, Bence; Chen-Izu, Ye; Jian, Zhong; Shimkunas, Rafael; Izu, Leighton T; Banyasz, Tamas

    2015-12-01

    Calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII) inhibitor KN-93 is widely used in multiple fields of cardiac research especially for studying the mechanisms of cardiomyopathy and cardiac arrhythmias. Whereas KN-93 is a potent inhibitor of CaMKII, several off-target effects have also been found in expression cell systems and smooth muscle cells, but there is no information on the KN93 side effects in mammalian ventricular myocytes. In this study we explore the effect of KN-93 on the rapid component of delayed rectifier potassium current (IKr) in the ventricular myocytes from rabbit and guinea pig hearts. Our data indicate that KN-93 exerts direct inhibitory effect on IKr that is not mediated via CaMKII. This off-target effect of KN93 should be taken into account when interpreting the data from using KN93 to investigate the role of CaMKII in cardiac function.

  1. Cellular and chemical neuroscience of mammalian sleep.

    PubMed

    Datta, Subimal

    2010-05-01

    Extraordinary strides have been made toward understanding the complexities and regulatory mechanisms of sleep over the past two decades thanks to the help of rapidly evolving technologies. At its most basic level, mammalian sleep is a restorative process of the brain and body. Beyond its primary restorative purpose, sleep is essential for a number of vital functions. Our primary research interest is to understand the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying the regulation of sleep and its cognitive functions. Here I will reflect on our own research contributions to 50 years of extraordinary advances in the neurobiology of slow-wave sleep (SWS) and rapid eye movement (REM) sleep regulation. I conclude this review by suggesting some potential future directions to further our understanding of the neurobiology of sleep.

  2. Mammalian Metallothionein-2A and Oxidative Stress

    PubMed Central

    Ling, Xue-Bin; Wei, Hong-Wei; Wang, Jun; Kong, Yue-Qiong; Wu, Yu-You; Guo, Jun-Li; Li, Tian-Fa; Li, Ji-Ke

    2016-01-01

    Mammalian metallothionein-2A (MT2A) has received considerable attention in recent years due to its crucial pathophysiological role in anti-oxidant, anti-apoptosis, detoxification and anti-inflammation. For many years, most studies evaluating the effects of MT2A have focused on reactive oxygen species (ROS), as second messengers that lead to oxidative stress injury of cells and tissues. Recent studies have highlighted that oxidative stress could activate mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs), and MT2A, as a mediator of MAPKs, to regulate the pathogenesis of various diseases. However, the molecule mechanism of MT2A remains elusive. A deeper understanding of the functional, biochemical and molecular characteristics of MT2A would be identified, in order to bring new opportunities for oxidative stress therapy. PMID:27608012

  3. Mammalian sperm nuclear organization: resiliencies and vulnerabilities.

    PubMed

    Champroux, A; Torres-Carreira, J; Gharagozloo, P; Drevet, J R; Kocer, A

    2016-01-01

    Sperm cells are remarkably complex and highly specialized compared to somatic cells. Their function is to deliver to the oocyte the paternal genomic blueprint along with a pool of proteins and RNAs so a new generation can begin. Reproductive success, including optimal embryonic development and healthy offspring, greatly depends on the integrity of the sperm chromatin structure. It is now well documented that DNA damage in sperm is linked to reproductive failures both in natural and assisted conception (Assisted Reproductive Technologies [ART]). This manuscript reviews recent important findings concerning - the unusual organization of mammalian sperm chromatin and its impact on reproductive success when modified. This review is focused on sperm chromatin damage and their impact on embryonic development and transgenerational inheritance.

  4. Dental microwear textures: reconstructing diets of fossil mammals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DeSantis, Larisa R. G.

    2016-06-01

    Dietary information of fossil mammals can be revealed via the analysis of tooth morphology, tooth wear, tooth geochemistry, and the microscopic wear patterns on tooth surfaces resulting from food processing. Although dental microwear has long been used by anthropologists and paleontologists to clarify diets in a diversity of mammals, until recently these methods focused on the counting of wear features (e.g., pits and scratches) from two-dimensional surfaces (typically via scanning electron microscopes or low-magnification light microscopes). The analysis of dental microwear textures can instead reveal dietary information in a broad range of herbivorous, omnivorous, and carnivorous mammals by characterizing microscopic tooth surfaces in three-dimensions, without the counting of individual surface features. To date, dental microwear textures in ungulates, xenarthrans, marsupials, carnivorans, and primates (including humans and their ancestors) are correlated with known dietary behavior in extant taxa and reconstruct ancient diets in a diversity of prehistoric mammals. For example, tough versus hard object feeding can be characterized across disparate phylogenetic groups and can distinguish grazers, folivorous, and flesh consumers (tougher food consumers) from woody browsers, frugivores, and bone consumers (harder object feeders). This paper reviews how dental microwear textures can be useful to reconstructing diets in a broad array of living and extinct mammals, with commentary on areas of future research.

  5. Scaling of the mammalian middle ear.

    PubMed

    Nummela, S

    1995-05-01

    This study considers the general question how animal size limits the size and information receiving capacity of sense organs. To clarify this in the case of the mammalian middle ear, I studied 63 mammalian species, ranging from a small bat to the Indian elephant. I determined the skull mass and the masses of the ossicles malleus, incus and stapes (M, I and S), and measured the tympanic membrane area, A1. The ossicular mass (in mg) is generally negatively allometric to skull mass (in g), the regression equation for the whole material (excluding true seals) being y = 1.373 x(0.513). However, for very small mammals the allometry approaches isometry. Within a group of large mammals no distinct allometry can be discerned. The true seals (Phocidae) are exceptional by having massive ossicles. The size relations within the middle ear are generally rather constant. However, the I/M relation is slightly positively allometric, y = 0.554 x(1.162). Two particularly isometric relations were found; the S/(M + I) relation for the ossicles characterized by the regression equation y = 0.054 x(0.993), and the relation between a two-dimensional measure of the ossicles and the tympanic membrane ares, (M + I)2/3 /A1. As in isometric ears the sound energy collected by the tympanic membrane is linearly related to its area, the latter isometry suggests that, regardless of animal size, a given ossicular cross-sectional area is exposed to a similar sound-induced stress. Possible morphological middle ear adaptations to particular acoustic environments are discussed.

  6. Defining the mammalian CArGome

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Qiang; Chen, Guang; Streb, Jeffrey W.; Long, Xiaochun; Yang, Yumei; Stoeckert, Christian J.; Miano, Joseph M.

    2006-01-01

    Serum response factor (SRF) binds a 1216-fold degenerate cis element known as the CArG box. CArG boxes are found primarily in muscle- and growth-factor-associated genes although the full spectrum of functional CArG elements in the genome (the CArGome) has yet to be defined. Here we describe a genome-wide screen to further define the functional mammalian CArGome. A computational approach involving comparative genomic analyses of human and mouse orthologous genes uncovered >100 hypothetical SRF-dependent genes, including 10 previously identified SRF targets, harboring a conserved CArG element within 4000 bp of the annotated transcription start site (TSS). We PCR-cloned 89 hypothetical SRF targets and subjected each of them to at least two of several validations including luciferase reporter, gel shift, chromatin immunoprecipitation, and mRNA expression following RNAi knockdown of SRF; 60/89 (67%) of the targets were validated. Interestingly, 26 of the validated SRF target genes encode for cytoskeletal/contractile or adhesion proteins. RNAi knockdown of SRF diminishes expression of several SRF-dependent cytoskeletal genes and elicits an attending perturbation in the cytoarchitecture of both human and rodent cells. These data illustrate the power of integrating existing algorithms to interrogate the genome in a relatively unbiased fashion for cis-regulatory element discovery. In this manner, we have further expanded the mammalian CArGome with the discovery of an array of cyto-contractile genes that coordinate normal cytoskeletal homeostasis. We suggest one function of SRF is that of an ancient master regulator of the actin cytoskeleton. PMID:16365378

  7. Cortical pathways to the mammalian amygdala.

    PubMed

    McDonald, A J

    1998-06-01

    The amygdaloid nuclear complex is critical for producing appropriate emotional and behavioral responses to biologically relevant sensory stimuli. It constitutes an essential link between sensory and limbic areas of the cerebral cortex and subcortical brain regions, such as the hypothalamus, brainstem, and striatum, that are responsible for eliciting emotional and motivational responses. This review summarizes the anatomy and physiology of the cortical pathways to the amygdala in the rat, cat and monkey. Although the basic anatomy of these systems in the cat and monkey was largely delineated in studies conducted during the 1970s and 1980s, detailed information regarding the cortico-amygdalar pathways in the rat was only obtained in the past several years. The purpose of this review is to describe the results of recent studies in the rat and to compare the organization of cortico-amygdalar projections in this species with that seen in the cat and monkey. In all three species visual, auditory, and somatosensory information is transmitted to the amygdala by a series of modality-specific cortico-cortical pathways ("cascades") that originate in the primary sensory cortices and flow toward higher order association areas. The cortical areas in the more distal portions of these cascades have stronger and more extensive projections to the amygdala than the more proximal areas. In all three species olfactory and gustatory/visceral information has access to the amygdala at an earlier stage of cortical processing than visual, auditory and somatosensory information. There are also important polysensory cortical inputs to the mammalian amygdala from the prefrontal and hippocampal regions. Whereas the overall organization of cortical pathways is basically similar in all mammalian species, there is anatomical evidence which suggests that there are important differences in the extent of convergence of cortical projections in the primate versus the nonprimate amygdala.

  8. Identification of mammalian orthologs using local synteny

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    Background Accurate determination of orthology is central to comparative genomics. For vertebrates in particular, very large gene families, high rates of gene duplication and loss, multiple mechanisms of gene duplication, and high rates of retrotransposition all combine to make inference of orthology between genes difficult. Many methods have been developed to identify orthologous genes, mostly based upon analysis of the inferred protein sequence of the genes. More recently, methods have been proposed that use genomic context in addition to protein sequence to improve orthology assignment in vertebrates. Such methods have been most successfully implemented in fungal genomes and have long been used in prokaryotic genomes, where gene order is far less variable than in vertebrates. However, to our knowledge, no explicit comparison of synteny and sequence based definitions of orthology has been reported in vertebrates, or, more specifically, in mammals. Results We test a simple method for the measurement and utilization of gene order (local synteny) in the identification of mammalian orthologs by investigating the agreement between coding sequence based orthology (Inparanoid) and local synteny based orthology. In the 5 mammalian genomes studied, 93% of the sampled inter-species pairs were found to be concordant between the two orthology methods, illustrating that local synteny is a robust substitute to coding sequence for identifying orthologs. However, 7% of pairs were found to be discordant between local synteny and Inparanoid. These cases of discordance result from evolutionary events including retrotransposition and genome rearrangements. Conclusions By analyzing cases of discordance between local synteny and Inparanoid we show that local synteny can distinguish between true orthologs and recent retrogenes, can resolve ambiguous many-to-many orthology relationships into one-to-one ortholog pairs, and might be used to identify cases of non-orthologous gene

  9. Engineered Trehalose Permeable to Mammalian Cells.

    PubMed

    Abazari, Alireza; Meimetis, Labros G; Budin, Ghyslain; Bale, Shyam Sundhar; Weissleder, Ralph; Toner, Mehmet

    2015-01-01

    Trehalose is a naturally occurring disaccharide which is associated with extraordinary stress-tolerance capacity in certain species of unicellular and multicellular organisms. In mammalian cells, presence of intra- and extracellular trehalose has been shown to confer improved tolerance against freezing and desiccation. Since mammalian cells do not synthesize nor import trehalose, the development of novel methods for efficient intracellular delivery of trehalose has been an ongoing investigation. Herein, we studied the membrane permeability of engineered lipophilic derivatives of trehalose. Trehalose conjugated with 6 acetyl groups (trehalose hexaacetate or 6-O-Ac-Tre) demonstrated superior permeability in rat hepatocytes compared with regular trehalose, trehalose diacetate (2-O-Ac-Tre) and trehalose tetraacetate (4-O-Ac-Tre). Once in the cell, intracellular esterases hydrolyzed the 6-O-Ac-Tre molecules, releasing free trehalose into the cytoplasm. The total concentration of intracellular trehalose (plus acetylated variants) reached as high as 10 fold the extracellular concentration of 6-O-Ac-Tre, attaining concentrations suitable for applications in biopreservation. To describe this accumulation phenomenon, a diffusion-reaction model was proposed and the permeability and reaction kinetics of 6-O-Ac-Tre were determined by fitting to experimental data. Further studies suggested that the impact of the loading and the presence of intracellular trehalose on cellular viability and function were negligible. Engineering of trehalose chemical structure rather than manipulating the cell, is an innocuous, cell-friendly method for trehalose delivery, with demonstrated potential for trehalose loading in different types of cells and cell lines, and can facilitate the wide-spread application of trehalose as an intracellular protective agent in biopreservation studies.

  10. Reconstruction of the Intranasal Lining.

    PubMed

    Zenga, Joseph; Chi, John J

    2017-02-01

    Reconstruction of full-thickness nasal defects has been the subject of surgical inquiry and innovation for over 2,000 years. The replacement of the internal nasal lining is a critical feature of complex nasal reconstruction. Successful reconstruction can prevent cicatricial contraction, external distortion, and internal stenosis. An array of reconstructive possibilities has been described, including cutaneous, mucosal, and fascial options. The challenge to the reconstructive surgeon is to select the repair that maximizes internal stability, while maintaining a patent nasal airway, minimizing morbidity, and meeting patient expectations. This article reviews the options available for the reconstruction of the intranasal lining.

  11. Adult Neurogenesis in the Mammalian Hippocampus: Why the Dentate Gyrus?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Drew, Liam J.; Fusi, Stefano; Hen, René

    2013-01-01

    In the adult mammalian brain, newly generated neurons are continuously incorporated into two networks: interneurons born in the subventricular zone migrate to the olfactory bulb, whereas the dentate gyrus (DG) of the hippocampus integrates locally born principal neurons. That the rest of the mammalian brain loses significant neurogenic capacity…

  12. An Analytical Study of Mammalian Bite Wounds Requiring Inpatient Management

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Young-Geun; Kim, Woo-Kyung

    2013-01-01

    Background Mammalian bite injuries create a public health problem because of their frequency, potential severity, and increasing number. Some researchers have performed fragmentary analyses of bite wounds caused by certain mammalian species. However, little practical information is available concerning serious mammalian bite wounds that require hospitalization and intensive wound management. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to perform a general review of serious mammalian bite wounds. Methods We performed a retrospective review of the medical charts of 68 patients who were referred to our plastic surgery department for the treatment of bite wounds between January 2003 and October 2012. The cases were analyzed according to the species, patient demographics, environmental factors, injury characteristics, and clinical course. Results Among the 68 cases of mammalian bite injury, 58 (85%) were caused by dogs, 8 by humans, and 2 by cats. Most of those bitten by a human and both of those bitten by cats were male. Only one-third of all the patients were children or adolescents. The most frequent site of injury was the face, with 40 cases, followed by the hand, with 16 cases. Of the 68 patients, 7 were treated with secondary intention healing. Sixty-one patients underwent delayed procedures, including delayed direct closure, skin graft, composite graft, and local flap. Conclusions Based on overall findings from our review of the 68 cases of mammalian bites, we suggest practical guidelines for the management of mammalian bite injuries, which could be useful in the treatment of serious mammalian bite wounds. PMID:24286042

  13. Reconstructing Progressive Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kaplan, Andy

    2013-01-01

    The work of Colonel Francis W. Parker, the man whom Dewey called "the father of progressive education," provides a starting point for reconstructing the loose ambiguities of progressive education into a coherent social and educational philosophy. Although progressives have claimed their approach is more humane and sensitive to children, we need…

  14. An early divergence of KhoeSan ancestors from those of other modern humans is supported by an ABC-based analysis of autosomal resequencing data.

    PubMed

    Veeramah, Krishna R; Wegmann, Daniel; Woerner, August; Mendez, Fernando L; Watkins, Joseph C; Destro-Bisol, Giovanni; Soodyall, Himla; Louie, Leslie; Hammer, Michael F

    2012-02-01

    Sub-Saharan Africa has consistently been shown to be the most genetically diverse region in the world. Despite the fact that a substantial portion of this variation is partitioned between groups practicing a variety of subsistence strategies and speaking diverse languages, there is currently no consensus on the genetic relationships of sub-Saharan African populations. San (a subgroup of KhoeSan) and many Pygmy groups maintain hunter-gatherer lifestyles and cluster together in autosomal-based analysis, whereas non-Pygmy Niger-Kordofanian speakers (non-Pygmy NKs) predominantly practice agriculture and show substantial genetic homogeneity despite their wide geographic range throughout sub-Saharan Africa. However, KhoeSan, who speak a set of relatively unique click-based languages, have long been thought to be an early branch of anatomically modern humans based on phylogenetic analysis. To formally test models of divergence among the ancestors of modern African populations, we resequenced a sample of San, Eastern, and Western Pygmies and non-Pygmy NKs individuals at 40 nongenic (∼2 kb) regions and then analyzed these data within an Approximate Bayesian Computation (ABC) framework. We find substantial support for a model of an early divergence of KhoeSan ancestors from a proto-Pygmy-non-Pygmy NKs group ∼110 thousand years ago over a model incorporating a proto-KhoeSan-Pygmy hunter-gatherer divergence from the ancestors of non-Pygmy NKs. The results of our analyses are consistent with previously identified signals of a strong bottleneck in Mbuti Pygmies and a relatively recent expansion of non-Pygmy NKs. We also develop a number of methodologies that utilize "pseudo-observed" data sets to optimize our ABC-based inference. This approach is likely to prove to be an invaluable tool for demographic inference using genome-wide resequencing data.

  15. Sequence Evolution and Expression of the Androgen Receptor and Other Pathway-Related Genes in a Unisexual Fish, the Amazon Molly, Poecilia formosa, and Its Bisexual Ancestors

    PubMed Central

    Zhu, Fangjun; Schlupp, Ingo; Tiedemann, Ralph

    2016-01-01

    The all-female Amazon molly (Poecilia formosa) originated from a single hybridization of two bisexual ancestors, Atlantic molly (Poecilia mexicana) and sailfin molly (Poecilia latipinna). As a gynogenetic species, the Amazon molly needs to copulate with a heterospecific male, but the genetic information of the sperm-donor does not contribute to the next generation, as the sperm only acts as the trigger for the diploid eggs’ embryogenesis. Here, we study the sequence evolution and gene expression of the duplicated genes coding for androgen receptors (ars) and other pathway-related genes, i.e., the estrogen receptors (ers) and cytochrome P450, family19, subfamily A, aromatase genes (cyp19as), in the Amazon molly, in comparison to its bisexual ancestors. Mollies possess–as most other teleost fish—two copies of the ar, er, and cyp19a genes, i.e., arα/arβ, erα/erβ1, and cyp19a1 (also referred as cyp19a1a)/cyp19a2 (also referred to as cyp19a1b), respectively. Non-synonymous single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) among the ancestral bisexual species were generally predicted not to alter protein function. Some derived substitutions in the P. mexicana and one in P. formosa are predicted to impact protein function. We also describe the gene expression pattern of the ars and pathway-related genes in various tissues (i.e., brain, gill, and ovary) and provide SNP markers for allele specific expression research. As a general tendency, the levels of gene expression were lowest in gill and highest in ovarian tissues, while expression levels in the brain were intermediate in most cases. Expression levels in P. formosa were conserved where expression did not differ between the two bisexual ancestors. In those cases where gene expression levels significantly differed between the bisexual species, P. formosa expression was always comparable to the higher expression level among the two ancestors. Interestingly, erβ1 was expressed neither in brain nor in gill in the analyzed

  16. Analysis of the coding-complete genomic sequence of groundnut ringspot virus suggests a common ancestor with tomato chlorotic spot virus.

    PubMed

    de Breuil, Soledad; Cañizares, Joaquín; Blanca, José Miguel; Bejerman, Nicolás; Trucco, Verónica; Giolitti, Fabián; Ziarsolo, Peio; Lenardon, Sergio

    2016-08-01

    Groundnut ringspot virus (GRSV) and tomato chlorotic spot virus (TCSV) share biological and serological properties, so their identification is carried out by molecular methods. Their genomes consist of three segmented RNAs: L, M and S. The finding of a reassortant between these two viruses may complicate correct virus identification and requires the characterization of the complete genome. Therefore, we present for the first time the complete sequences of all the genes encoded by a GRSV isolate. The high level of sequence similarity between GRSV and TCSV (over 90 % identity) observed in the genes and proteins encoded in the M RNA support previous results indicating that these viruses probably have a common ancestor.

  17. The ancestor of the Paulinella chromatophore obtained a carboxysomal operon by horizontal gene transfer from a Nitrococcus-like γ-proteobacterium

    PubMed Central

    Marin, Birger; Nowack, Eva CM; Glöckner, Gernot; Melkonian, Michael

    2007-01-01

    Background Paulinella chromatophora is a freshwater filose amoeba with photosynthetic endosymbionts (chromatophores) of cyanobacterial origin that are closely related to free-living Prochlorococcus and Synechococcus species (PS-clade). Members of the PS-clade of cyanobacteria contain a proteobacterial form 1A RubisCO (ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase/oxygenase) that was acquired by horizontal gene transfer (HGT) of a carboxysomal operon. In rDNA-phylogenies, the Paulinella chromatophore diverged basal to the PS-clade, raising the question whether the HGT occurred before or after the split of the chromatophore ancestor. Results Phylogenetic analyses of the almost complete rDNA operon with an improved taxon sampling containing most known cyanobacterial lineages recovered the Paulinella chromatophore as sister to the complete PS-clade. The sequence of the complete carboxysomal operon of Paulinella was determined. Analysis of RubisCO large subunit (rbcL) sequences revealed that Paulinella shares the proteobacterial form 1A RubisCO with the PS-clade. The γ-proteobacterium Nitrococcus mobilis was identified as sister of the Paulinella chromatophore and the PS-clade in the RubisCO phylogeny. Gene content and order in the carboxysomal operon correlates well with the RubisCO phylogeny demonstrating that the complete carboxysomal operon was acquired by the common ancestor of the Paulinella chromatophore and the PS-clade through HGT. The carboxysomal operon shows a significantly elevated AT content in Paulinella, which in the rbcL gene is confined to third codon positions. Combined phylogenies using rbcL and the rDNA-operon resulted in a nearly fully resolved tree of the PS-clade. Conclusion The HGT of the carboxysomal operon predated the divergence of the chromatophore ancestor from the PS-clade. Following HGT and divergence of the chromatophore ancestor, diversification of the PS-clade into at least three subclades occurred. The γ-proteobacterium Nitrococcus mobilis

  18. USE OF NON-MAMMALIAN ALTERNATIVE MODELS FOR NEUROTOXICOLOGICAL STUDY

    PubMed Central

    Peterson, Randall T.; Nass, Richard; Boyd, Windy A.; Freedman, Jonathan H.; Dong, Ke; Narahashi, Toshio

    2009-01-01

    The field of neurotoxicology needs to satisfy two opposing demands: the testing of a growing list of chemicals, and resource limitations and ethical concerns associated with testing using traditional mammalian species. National and international government agencies have defined a need to reduce, refine or replace mammalian species in toxicological testing with alternative testing methods and non-mammalian models. Toxicological assays using alternative animal models may relieve some of this pressure by allowing testing of more compounds while reducing expense and using fewer mammals. Recent advances in genetic technologies and the strong conservation between human and non-mammalian genomes allows for the dissection of the molecular pathways involved in neurotoxicological responses and neurological diseases using genetically tractable organisms. In this review, applications of four non-mammalian species, Zebrafish, cockroach, Drosophila, and Caenorhabditis elegans, in the investigation of neurotoxicology and neurological diseases are presented. PMID:18538410

  19. Optimal 2D-SIM reconstruction by two filtering steps with Richardson-Lucy deconvolution

    PubMed Central

    Perez, Victor; Chang, Bo-Jui; Stelzer, Ernst Hans Karl

    2016-01-01

    Structured illumination microscopy relies on reconstruction algorithms to yield super-resolution images. Artifacts can arise in the reconstruction and affect the image quality. Current reconstruction methods involve a parametrized apodization function and a Wiener filter. Empirically tuning the parameters in these functions can minimize artifacts, but such an approach is subjective and produces volatile results. We present a robust and objective method that yields optimal results by two straightforward filtering steps with Richardson-Lucy-based deconvolutions. We provide a resource to identify artifacts in 2D-SIM images by analyzing two main reasons for artifacts, out-of-focus background and a fluctuating reconstruction spectrum. We show how the filtering steps improve images of test specimens, microtubules, yeast and mammalian cells. PMID:27849043

  20. Optimal 2D-SIM reconstruction by two filtering steps with Richardson-Lucy deconvolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perez, Victor; Chang, Bo-Jui; Stelzer, Ernst Hans Karl

    2016-11-01

    Structured illumination microscopy relies on reconstruction algorithms to yield super-resolution images. Artifacts can arise in the reconstruction and affect the image quality. Current reconstruction methods involve a parametrized apodization function and a Wiener filter. Empirically tuning the parameters in these functions can minimize artifacts, but such an approach is subjective and produces volatile results. We present a robust and objective method that yields optimal results by two straightforward filtering steps with Richardson-Lucy-based deconvolutions. We provide a resource to identify artifacts in 2D-SIM images by analyzing two main reasons for artifacts, out-of-focus background and a fluctuating reconstruction spectrum. We show how the filtering steps improve images of test specimens, microtubules, yeast and mammalian cells.

  1. Preparing for Breast Reconstruction Surgery

    MedlinePlus

    ... Cancer Breast Reconstruction Surgery Preparing for Breast Reconstruction Surgery Your surgeon can help you know what to ... The plan for follow-up Costs Understanding your surgery costs Health insurance policies often cover most or ...

  2. Controversies in Parotid Defect Reconstruction.

    PubMed

    Tamplen, Matthew; Knott, P Daniel; Fritz, Michael A; Seth, Rahul

    2016-08-01

    Reconstruction of the parotid defect is a complex topic that encompasses restoration of both facial form and function. The reconstructive surgeon must consider facial contour, avoidance of Frey syndrome, skin coverage, tumor surveillance, potential adjuvant therapy, and facial reanimation when addressing parotid defects. With each defect there are several options within the reconstructive ladder, creating controversies regarding optimal management. This article describes surgical approaches to reconstruction of parotid defects, highlighting areas of controversy.

  3. Synthetic, biological and composite scaffolds for abdominal wall reconstruction.

    PubMed

    Meintjes, Jennifer; Yan, Sheng; Zhou, Lin; Zheng, Shusen; Zheng, Minghao

    2011-03-01

    The reconstruction of abdominal wall defects remains a huge surgical challenge. Tension-free repair is proven to be superior to suture repair in abdominal wall reconstruction. Scaffolds are essential for tension-free repair. They are used to bridge a defect or reinforce the abdominal wall. A huge variety of scaffolds are now commercially available. Most of the synthetic scaffolds are composed of polypropylene. They provide strong tissue reinforcement, but cause a foreign body reaction, which can result in serious complications. Absorbable synthetic scaffolds, such as Dexon™ (polyglycolic acid) and Vicryl™ (polyglactin 910), are not suitable for abdominal wall reconstruction as they usually require subsequent surgeries to repair recurrent hernias. Composite scaffolds combine the strength of nonabsorbable synthetic scaffolds with the antiadhesive properties of the absorbable scaffold, but require long-term follow-up. Biological scaffolds, such as Permacol™, Surgisis(®) and Alloderm(®), are derived from acellular mammalian tissues. Non-cross-linked biological scaffolds show excellent biocompatibility and degrade slowly over time. However, remnant DNA has been found in several products and the degradation leads to recurrence. Randomized controlled trials with long-term follow-up studies are lacking for all of the available scaffolds, particularly those derived from animal tissue. This article provides an overview of the different types of scaffolds available, and presents the key clinical studies of the commercially available synthetic, composite and biological scaffolds for abdominal wall reconstruction.

  4. A compact light-sheet microscope for the study of the mammalian central nervous system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Zhengyi; Haslehurst, Peter; Scott, Suzanne; Emptage, Nigel; Dholakia, Kishan

    2016-05-01

    Investigation of the transient processes integral to neuronal function demands rapid and high-resolution imaging techniques over a large field of view, which cannot be achieved with conventional scanning microscopes. Here we describe a compact light sheet fluorescence microscope, featuring a 45° inverted geometry and an integrated photolysis laser, that is optimized for applications in neuroscience, in particular fast imaging of sub-neuronal structures in mammalian brain slices. We demonstrate the utility of this design for three-dimensional morphological reconstruction, activation of a single synapse with localized photolysis, and fast imaging of neuronal Ca2+ signalling across a large field of view. The developed system opens up a host of novel applications for the neuroscience community.

  5. A compact light-sheet microscope for the study of the mammalian central nervous system

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Zhengyi; Haslehurst, Peter; Scott, Suzanne; Emptage, Nigel; Dholakia, Kishan

    2016-01-01

    Investigation of the transient processes integral to neuronal function demands rapid and high-resolution imaging techniques over a large field of view, which cannot be achieved with conventional scanning microscopes. Here we describe a compact light sheet fluorescence microscope, featuring a 45° inverted geometry and an integrated photolysis laser, that is optimized for applications in neuroscience, in particular fast imaging of sub-neuronal structures in mammalian brain slices. We demonstrate the utility of this design for three-dimensional morphological reconstruction, activation of a single synapse with localized photolysis, and fast imaging of neuronal Ca2+ signalling across a large field of view. The developed system opens up a host of novel applications for the neuroscience community. PMID:27215692

  6. The pattern of mammalian evolution and the relative rate of molecular evolution

    SciTech Connect

    Easteal, S. )

    1990-01-01

    The rates of nucleotide substitution at four genes in four orders of eutherian mammals are compared in relative rate tests using marsupial orthologs for reference. There is no evidence of systematic variation in evolutionary rate among the orders. The sequences are used to reconstruct the phylogeny of the orders using maximum likelihood, parsimony and compatibility methods. A branching order of rodent then ungulate then primate and lagomorph is overwhelmingly indicated. The nodes of the nucleotide based cladograms are widely separated in relation to the total lengths of the branches. The assumption of a star phylogeny that underlies Kimura's test for molecular evolutionary rate variation is shown to be invalid for eutherian mammals. Excess variance in nucleotide or amino acid differences between mammalian orders, above that predicted by neutral theory is explained better by variation in divergence time than by variation in evolutionary rate.

  7. Retinal research using the perfused mammalian eye.

    PubMed

    Niemeyer, G

    2001-05-01

    The effort to isolate and maintain alive in vitro an intact mammalian eye is rewarded by the full control provided over the arterial input and exclusion of systemic regulatory or compensatory mechanisms. Electrical recording of typical light-evoked field potentials from retina and optic nerve can be complemented by single-cell recording. Thus, light-induced electrical activity reflects the function of the retinal pigment epithelium, of the layers of the retina and of the ganglion cells or their axons. Retinal function in vitro is documented by electrophysiological and morphological methods revealing subtle features of retinal information processing as well as optic nerve signals that approach-at threshold stimulus intensity-the human psychophysical threshold. Such sensitivity of third-order retinal neurons is described for the first time. This well controlled in vitro preparation has been used successfully for biophysical, metabolic and pharmacological studies. Examples are provided that demonstrate the marked sensibility of the rod system to changes in glucose supply. Moreover, histochemical identification of glycogen stores revealed labeling of the second- and third-order neurons subserving the rod system, in addition to labeling of Müller (glial) cells in the cat retina. The glycogen content of the cat retina is augmented by prolonged anesthesia, largely depleted by ischemia after enucleation and enhanced by insulin. Pharmacological experiments using agonists and antagonists of putative retinal neurotransmitters are summarized and outlined using the muscarinic cholinergic agonist QNB as an example. Actions and uptake of the neuromodulator adenosine are presented in detail, including inhibitory effects on physiologically characterized ganglion cells. Neuronal effects of adenosine are distinguished from those resulting from vasodilatation and from glycogenolysis induced by the neuromodulator. To open the blood-retina barrier, a hyperosmotic challenge can be

  8. Retroposed SNOfall--a mammalian-wide comparison of platypus snoRNAs.

    PubMed

    Schmitz, Jürgen; Zemann, Anja; Churakov, Gennady; Kuhl, Heiner; Grützner, Frank; Reinhardt, Richard; Brosius, Jürgen

    2008-06-01

    Diversification of mammalian species began more than 160 million years ago when the egg-laying monotremes diverged from live bearing mammals. The duck-billed platypus (Ornithorhynchus anatinus) and echidnas are the only potential contemporary witnesses of this period and, thereby, provide a unique insight into mammalian genome evolution. It has become clear that small RNAs are major regulatory agents in eukaryotic cells, and the significant role of non-protein-coding (npc) RNAs in transcription, processing, and translation is now well accepted. Here we show that the platypus genome contains more than 200 small nucleolar (sno) RNAs among hundreds of other diverse npcRNAs. Their comparison among key mammalian groups and other vertebrates enabled us to reconstruct a complete temporal pathway of acquisition and loss of these snoRNAs. In platypus we found cis- and trans-duplication distribution patterns for snoRNAs, which have not been described in any other vertebrates but are known to occur in nematodes. An exciting novelty in platypus is a snoRNA-derived retroposon (termed snoRTE) that facilitates a very effective dispersal of an H/ACA snoRNA via RTE-mediated retroposition. From more than 40,000 detected full-length and truncated genomic copies of this snoRTE, at least 21 are processed into mature snoRNAs. High-copy retroposition via multiple host gene-promoted transcription units is a novel pathway for combining housekeeping function and SINE-like dispersal and reveals a new dimension in the evolution of novel snoRNA function.

  9. Colonization of islands in the Mona Passage by endemic dwarf geckoes (genus Sphaerodactylus) reconstructed with mitochondrial phylogeny

    PubMed Central

    Díaz-Lameiro, Alondra M; Oleksyk, Taras K; Bird-Picó, Fernando J; Martínez-Cruzado, Juan Carlos

    2013-01-01

    Little is known about the natural history of the Sphaerodactylus species endemic to the three islands located in the Mona Passage separating the Greater Antillean islands of Hispaniola and Puerto Rico. In this study, parts of two mitochondrial genes, 16S rRNA and 12S rRNA, were sequenced to determine the relationships between the sphaerodactylids that live in the Mona Passage and other Caribbean species from the same genus. While the main goal was to identify the biogeographical origin of these species, we also identified a genetically distinct type of dwarf gecko that warrants future evaluation as a possible new species. According to the reconstructed phylogenies, we propose a stepwise model of colonization wherein S. nicholsi from southwestern Puerto Rico or a very close ancestor gave rise through a founder event to Sphaerodactylus monensis on Mona Island. In a similar fashion, S. monensis or a very close ancestor on Mona Island gave rise to S. levinsi on Desecheo Island. This study also suggests that the most recent common ancestor between the species from the islands in the Mona Passage and Puerto Rico existed approximately 3 MYA. PMID:24340189

  10. On the tool use behavior of the bonobo-chimpanzee last common ancestor, and the origins of hominine stone tool use.

    PubMed

    Haslam, Michael

    2014-10-01

    The last common ancestor (LCA) shared by chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) and bonobos (P. paniscus) was an Early Pleistocene African ape, which, based on the behavior of modern chimpanzees, may be assumed to be a tool-using animal. However, the character of tool use in the Pan lineage prior to the 20th century is largely unknown. Here, I use available data on wild bonobo tool use and emerging molecular estimates of demography during Pan evolution to hypothesise the plausible tool use behavior of the bonobo-chimpanzee LCA (or "Pancestor") at the start of the Pleistocene, over 2 million years ago. This method indicates that the common ancestor of living Pan apes likely used plant tools for probing, sponging, and display, but it did not use stone tools. Instead, stone tool use appears to have been independently invented by Western African chimpanzees (P. t. verus) during the Middle Pleistocene in the region of modern Liberia-Ivory Coast-Guinea, possibly as recently as 200,000-150,000 years ago. If this is the case, then the LCA of humans and chimpanzees likely also did not use stone tools, and this trait probably first emerged among hominins in Pliocene East Africa. This review also suggests that the consistently higher population sizes of Central African chimpanzees (P. t. troglodytes) over the past million years may have contributed to the increased complexity of wild tool use seen in this sub-species today.

  11. Medial Patellofemoral Ligament Reconstruction

    PubMed Central

    Palacios, Jose Antonio; Yacuzzi, Carlos; Oñativia, Jose I.; Zicaro, Juan Pablo; Costa-Paz, Matias

    2017-01-01

    Objectives: Recurrent patellofemoral dislocation is usually a multifactorial pathology. Different surgical techniques have been described according to the etiology of dislocation. In absence of a severe malalignment or an anatomical patellofemoral dysplasia, reconstruction of Medial Patello-femoral Ligament (MPFL) can restore the normal tracking of the patella, avoiding lateral excursion. The purpose of this study was to evaluate clinical results and complications in patients who underwent a MPFL reconstruction. Methods: We retrospectively evaluated 19 patients who underwent an anatomic MPFL reconstruction using autologous semitendinosus graft between 2007 and 2012. Exclusion criteria were patients with less than three years of follow-up and those with an associated procedure such as distal realignment or trochleoplasty. Clinical outcomes were measured using Kujala score and return to sport rate. We registered the postoperative complications and recurrence rate. Results: Nine patients were men and 10 women with a mean age of 25 years. Average follow-up was 5.8 years. Nine patients (47.4%) returned to their previous sport level, 8 (42.1%) changed to another sport or decreased their level and 2 (10.5%) were unable to practice any sports at all. Kujala score improvement was from 62.8 preoperative to 88.8 postoperative. One patient decreased the Kujala score. Eighty-nine percent of patients were satisfied with their outcome. One patient had a patellar fracture and four developed an arthrofibrosis and required mobilization under anesthesia. No recurrences were registered. Conclusion: Isolated MPFL reconstruction for recurrent patellofemoral dislocation is an effective alternative in absence of severe malalignment or anatomical dysplasia. Although no recurrences where registered at minimum 3-year follow-up, almost half of the patients were not able to return to their previous sport level.

  12. Kinky tomographic reconstruction

    SciTech Connect

    Hanson, K.M.; Cunningham, G.S.; Bilisoly, R.L.

    1996-05-01

    We address the issue of how to make decisions about the degree of smoothness demanded of a flexible contour used to model the boundary of a 2D object. We demonstrate the use of a Bayesian approach to set the strength of the smoothness prior for a tomographic reconstruction problem. The Akaike Information Criterion is used to determine whether to allow a kink in the contour.

  13. Temporal Surface Reconstruction

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1991-05-03

    sequence of images. Structure information can be recovered from images through a number of visual mechanisms such as shading, motion and stereo . Image...stages which are repeated (continued on back) 14. SUBJECT TERMS (key words) 1S. NUMBER OF PAGES 3D reconstruction structure estimation temporal visio 149...such as shading, motion and stereo . Image information is commonly available in a time-continuous fashion and this work proposes a method for estimating

  14. World reconstruction in psychotherapy.

    PubMed

    Bergner, Raymond M

    2005-01-01

    The purpose of this article is to articulate how we, as psychotherapists, can transform the worlds of our clients. In part one of the article, the concept of "world," the dynamics of how worlds operate, and the clinically relevant notions of "problematic worlds" and "impossible worlds" are explicated. In part two, therapeutic recommendations for helping clients to reconstruct their worlds are presented, with special emphasis on problems of grief post-traumatic stress disorder, and the experience of meaninglessness.

  15. Distinct annexin subfamilies in plants and protists diverged prior to animal annexins and from a common ancestor.

    PubMed

    Morgan, R O; Pilar Fernandez, M

    1997-02-01

    Annexin homologues in the kingdoms of Planta and Protista were characterized by molecular sequence analysis to determine their phylogenetic and structural relationship with annexins of Animalia. Sequence fragments from 19 plant annexins were identified in sequence databases and composite sequences were also assembled from expressed sequence tags for Arabidopsis thaliana. Length differences in protein aminotermini and evidence for unique exon splice sites indicated that plant annexins were distinct from those of animals. A third annexin gene of Giardia lamblia (Anx21-Gla) was identified as a distant relative to other protist annexins and to those of higher eukaryotes, thus providing a suitable outgroup for evolutionary reconstruction of the family tree. Rooted evolutionary trees portrayed protist, plant, and Dictyostelium annexins as early, monophyletic ramifications prior to the appearance of closely related animal annexin XIII. Molecular phylogenetic analyses of DNA and protein sequence alignments revealed at least seven separate plant subfamilies, represented by Anx18 (alfalfa, previously classified), Anx22 (thale cress), Anx23 (thale cress, cotton, rape and cabbage), Anx24 (bell pepper and tomato p34), Anx25 (strawberry, horseradish, pea, soybean, and castor bean), Anx26-Zma, and Anx27-Zma (maize). Other unique subfamilies may exist for rice, tomato p35, apple, and celery annexins. Consensus sequences compiled for each eukaryotic kingdom showed some breakdown of the "annexin-fold" motif in repeats 2 and 3 of protist and plant annexins and a conserved codon deletion in repeat 3 of plants. The characterization of distinct annexin genes in plants and protists reflects their comparable diversity among animal species and offers alternative models for the comparative study of structure-function relationships within this important gene family.

  16. Myocardial ischemic protection in natural mammalian hibernation.

    PubMed

    Yan, Lin; Kudej, Raymond K; Vatner, Dorothy E; Vatner, Stephen F

    2015-03-01

    Hibernating myocardium is an important clinical syndrome protecting the heart with chronic myocardial ischemia, named for its assumed resemblance to hibernating mammals in winter. However, the effects of myocardial ischemic protection have never been studied in true mammalian hibernation, which is a unique strategy for surviving extreme winter environmental stress. The goal of this investigation was to test the hypothesis that ischemic stress may also be protected in woodchucks as they hibernate in winter. Myocardial infarction was induced by coronary occlusion followed by reperfusion in naturally hibernating woodchucks in winter with and without hibernation and in summer, when not hibernating. The ischemic area at risk was similar among groups. Myocardial infarction was significantly less in woodchucks in winter, whether hibernating or not, compared with summer, and was similar to that resulting after ischemic preconditioning. Whereas several genes were up or downregulated in both hibernating woodchuck and with ischemic preconditioning, one mechanism was unique to hibernation, i.e., activation of cAMP-response element binding protein (CREB). When CREB was upregulated in summer, it induced protection similar to that observed in the woodchuck heart in winter. The cardioprotection in hibernation was also mediated by endothelial nitric oxide synthase, rather than inducible nitric oxide synthase. Thus, the hibernating woodchuck heart is a novel model to study cardioprotection for two major reasons: (1) powerful cardioprotection occurs naturally in winter months in the absence of any preconditioning stimuli, and (2) it resembles ischemic preconditioning, but with novel mechanisms, making this model potentially useful for clinical translation.

  17. The First Mammalian Aldehyde Oxidase Crystal Structure

    PubMed Central

    Coelho, Catarina; Mahro, Martin; Trincão, José; Carvalho, Alexandra T. P.; Ramos, Maria João; Terao, Mineko; Garattini, Enrico; Leimkühler, Silke; Romão, Maria João

    2012-01-01

    Aldehyde oxidases (AOXs) are homodimeric proteins belonging to the xanthine oxidase family of molybdenum-containing enzymes. Each 150-kDa monomer contains a FAD redox cofactor, two spectroscopically distinct [2Fe-2S] clusters, and a molybdenum cofactor located within the protein active site. AOXs are characterized by broad range substrate specificity, oxidizing different aldehydes and aromatic N-heterocycles. Despite increasing recognition of its role in the metabolism of drugs and xenobiotics, the physiological function of the protein is still largely unknown. We have crystallized and solved the crystal structure of mouse liver aldehyde oxidase 3 to 2.9 Å. This is the first mammalian AOX whose structure has been solved. The structure provides important insights into the protein active center and further evidence on the catalytic differences characterizing AOX and xanthine oxidoreductase. The mouse liver aldehyde oxidase 3 three-dimensional structure combined with kinetic, mutagenesis data, molecular docking, and molecular dynamics studies make a decisive contribution to understand the molecular basis of its rather broad substrate specificity. PMID:23019336

  18. Mitochondrial dynamics in mammalian health and disease.

    PubMed

    Liesa, Marc; Palacín, Manuel; Zorzano, Antonio

    2009-07-01

    The meaning of the word mitochondrion (from the Greek mitos, meaning thread, and chondros, grain) illustrates that the heterogeneity of mitochondrial morphology has been known since the first descriptions of this organelle. Such a heterogeneous morphology is explained by the dynamic nature of mitochondria. Mitochondrial dynamics is a concept that includes the movement of mitochondria along the cytoskeleton, the regulation of mitochondrial architecture (morphology and distribution), and connectivity mediated by tethering and fusion/fission events. The relevance of these events in mitochondrial and cell physiology has been partially unraveled after the identification of the genes responsible for mitochondrial fusion and fission. Furthermore, during the last decade, it has been identified that mutations in two mitochondrial fusion genes (MFN2 and OPA1) cause prevalent neurodegenerative diseases (Charcot-Marie Tooth type 2A and Kjer disease/autosomal dominant optic atrophy). In addition, other diseases such as type 2 diabetes or vascular proliferative disorders show impaired MFN2 expression. Altogether, these findings have established mitochondrial dynamics as a consolidated area in cellular physiology. Here we review the most significant findings in the field of mitochondrial dynamics in mammalian cells and their implication in human pathologies.

  19. Sources of Error in Mammalian Genetic Screens

    PubMed Central

    Sack, Laura Magill; Davoli, Teresa; Xu, Qikai; Li, Mamie Z.; Elledge, Stephen J.

    2016-01-01

    Genetic screens are invaluable tools for dissection of biological phenomena. Optimization of such screens to enhance discovery of candidate genes and minimize false positives is thus a critical aim. Here, we report several sources of error common to pooled genetic screening techniques used in mammalian cell culture systems, and demonstrate methods to eliminate these errors. We find that reverse transcriptase-mediated recombination during retroviral replication can lead to uncoupling of molecular tags, such as DNA barcodes (BCs), from their associated library elements, leading to chimeric proviral genomes in which BCs are paired to incorrect ORFs, shRNAs, etc. This effect depends on the length of homologous sequence between unique elements, and can be minimized with careful vector design. Furthermore, we report that residual plasmid DNA from viral packaging procedures can contaminate transduced cells. These plasmids serve as additional copies of the PCR template during library amplification, resulting in substantial inaccuracies in measurement of initial reference populations for screen normalization. The overabundance of template in some samples causes an imbalance between PCR cycles of contaminated and uncontaminated samples, which results in a systematic artifactual depletion of GC-rich library elements. Elimination of contaminating plasmid DNA using the bacterial endonuclease Benzonase can restore faithful measurements of template abundance and minimize GC bias. PMID:27402361

  20. From Immunity and Vaccines to Mammalian Regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Heber-Katz, Ellen

    2015-01-01

    Our current understanding of major histocompatibility complex (MHC)-mediated antigen presentation in self and nonself immune recognition was derived from immunological studies of autoimmunity and virus-host interactions, respectively. The trimolecular complex of the MHC molecule, antigen, and T-cell receptor accounts for the phenomena of immunodominance and MHC degeneracy in both types of responses and constrains vaccine development. Out of such considerations, we developed a simple peptide vaccine construct that obviates immunodominance, resulting in a broadly protective T-cell response in the absence of antibody. In the course of autoimmunity studies, we identified the MRL mouse strain as a mammalian model of amphibian-like regeneration. A significant level of DNA damage in the cells from this mouse pointed to the role of the cell cycle checkpoint gene CDKN1a, or p21cip1/waf1. The MRL mouse has highly reduced levels of this molecule, and a genetic knockout of this single gene in otherwise nonregenerating strains led to an MRL-type regenerative response, indicating that the ability to regenerate has not been lost during evolution. PMID:26116734

  1. Angiogenesis is inhibitory for mammalian digit regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Ling; Yan, Mingquan; Simkin, Jennifer; Ketcham, Paulina D.; Leininger, Eric; Han, Manjong

    2014-01-01

    Abstract The regenerating mouse digit tip is a unique model for investigating blastema formation and epimorphic regeneration in mammals. The blastema is characteristically avascular and we previously reported that blastema expression of a known anti‐angiogenic factor gene, Pedf, correlated with a successful regenerative response (Yu, L., Han, M., Yan, M., Lee, E. C., Lee, J. & Muneoka, K. (2010). BMP signaling induces digit regeneration in neonatal mice. Development, 137, 551–559). Here we show that during regeneration Vegfa transcripts are not detected in the blastema but are expressed at the onset of differentiation. Treating the amputation wound with vascular endothelial growth factor enhances angiogenesis but inhibits regeneration. We next tested bone morphogenetic protein 9 (BMP9), another known mediator of angiogenesis, and found that BMP9 is also a potent inhibitor of digit tip regeneration. BMP9 induces Vegfa expression in the digit stump suggesting that regenerative failure is mediated by enhanced angiogenesis. Finally, we show that BMP9 inhibition of regeneration is completely rescued by treatment with pigment epithelium‐derived factor. These studies show that precocious angiogenesis is inhibitory for regeneration, and provide compelling evidence that the regulation of angiogenesis is a critical factor in designing therapies aimed at stimulating mammalian regeneration. PMID:27499862

  2. Angiogenesis is inhibitory for mammalian digit regeneration.

    PubMed

    Yu, Ling; Yan, Mingquan; Simkin, Jennifer; Ketcham, Paulina D; Leininger, Eric; Han, Manjong; Muneoka, Ken

    2014-06-01

    The regenerating mouse digit tip is a unique model for investigating blastema formation and epimorphic regeneration in mammals. The blastema is characteristically avascular and we previously reported that blastema expression of a known anti-angiogenic factor gene, Pedf, correlated with a successful regenerative response (Yu, L., Han, M., Yan, M., Lee, E. C., Lee, J. & Muneoka, K. (2010). BMP signaling induces digit regeneration in neonatal mice. Development, 137, 551-559). Here we show that during regeneration Vegfa transcripts are not detected in the blastema but are expressed at the onset of differentiation. Treating the amputation wound with vascular endothelial growth factor enhances angiogenesis but inhibits regeneration. We next tested bone morphogenetic protein 9 (BMP9), another known mediator of angiogenesis, and found that BMP9 is also a potent inhibitor of digit tip regeneration. BMP9 induces Vegfa expression in the digit stump suggesting that regenerative failure is mediated by enhanced angiogenesis. Finally, we show that BMP9 inhibition of regeneration is completely rescued by treatment with pigment epithelium-derived factor. These studies show that precocious angiogenesis is inhibitory for regeneration, and provide compelling evidence that the regulation of angiogenesis is a critical factor in designing therapies aimed at stimulating mammalian regeneration.

  3. Ion channels, phosphorylation and mammalian sperm capacitation

    PubMed Central

    Visconti, Pablo E; Krapf, Dario; de la Vega-Beltrán, José Luis; Acevedo, Juan José; Darszon, Alberto

    2011-01-01

    Sexually reproducing animals require an orchestrated communication between spermatozoa and the egg to generate a new individual. Capacitation, a maturational complex phenomenon that occurs in the female reproductive tract, renders spermatozoa capable of binding and fusing with the oocyte, and it is a requirement for mammalian fertilization. Capacitation encompasses plasma membrane reorganization, ion permeability regulation, cholesterol loss and changes in the phosphorylation state of many proteins. Novel tools to study sperm ion channels, image intracellular ionic changes and proteins with better spatial and temporal resolution, are unraveling how modifications in sperm ion transport and phosphorylation states lead to capacitation. Recent evidence indicates that two parallel pathways regulate phosphorylation events leading to capacitation, one of them requiring activation of protein kinase A and the second one involving inactivation of ser/thr phosphatases. This review examines the involvement of ion transporters and phosphorylation signaling processes needed for spermatozoa to achieve capacitation. Understanding the molecular mechanisms leading to fertilization is central for societies to deal with rising male infertility rates, to develop safe male gamete-based contraceptives and to preserve biodiversity through better assisted fertilization strategies. PMID:21540868

  4. Myocardial ischemic protection in natural mammalian hibernation

    PubMed Central

    Yan, Lin; Kudej, Raymond K.; Vatner, Dorothy E.

    2015-01-01

    Hibernating myocardium is an important clinical syndrome protecting the heart with chronic myocardial ischemia, named for its assumed resemblance to hibernating mammals in winter. However, the effects of myocardial ischemic protection have never been studied in true mammalian hibernation, which is a unique strategy for surviving extreme winter environmental stress. The goal of this investigation was to test the hypothesis that ischemic stress may also be protected in woodchucks as they hibernate in winter. Myocardial infarction was induced by coronary occlusion followed by reperfusion in naturally hibernating woodchucks in winter with and without hibernation and in summer, when not hibernating. The ischemic area at risk was similar among groups. Myocardial infarction was significantly less in woodchucks in winter, whether hibernating or not, compared with summer, and was similar to that resulting after ischemic preconditioning. Whereas several genes were up or downregulated in both hibernating woodchuck and with ischemic preconditioning, one mechanism was unique to hibernation, i.e., activation of cAMP-response element binding protein (CREB). When CREB was upregulated in summer, it induced protection similar to that observed in the woodchuck heart in winter. The cardioprotection in hibernation was also mediated by endothelial nitric oxide synthase, rather than inducible nitric oxide synthase. Thus, the hibernating woodchuck heart is a novel model to study cardioprotection for two major reasons: (1) powerful cardioprotection occurs naturally in winter months in the absence of any preconditioning stimuli, and (2) it resembles ischemic preconditioning, but with novel mechanisms, making this model potentially useful for clinical translation. PMID:25613166

  5. Functional amyloid formation within mammalian tissue.

    PubMed

    Fowler, Douglas M; Koulov, Atanas V; Alory-Jost, Christelle; Marks, Michael S; Balch, William E; Kelly, Jeffery W

    2006-01-01

    Amyloid is a generally insoluble, fibrous cross-beta sheet protein aggregate. The process of amyloidogenesis is associated with a variety of neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer, Parkinson, and Huntington disease. We report the discovery of an unprecedented functional mammalian amyloid structure generated by the protein Pmel17. This discovery demonstrates that amyloid is a fundamental nonpathological protein fold utilized by organisms from bacteria to humans. We have found that Pmel17 amyloid templates and accelerates the covalent polymerization of reactive small molecules into melanin-a critically important biopolymer that protects against a broad range of cytotoxic insults including UV and oxidative damage. Pmel17 amyloid also appears to play a role in mitigating the toxicity associated with melanin formation by sequestering and minimizing diffusion of highly reactive, toxic melanin precursors out of the melanosome. Intracellular Pmel17 amyloidogenesis is carefully orchestrated by the secretory pathway, utilizing membrane sequestration and proteolytic steps to protect the cell from amyloid and amyloidogenic intermediates that can be toxic. While functional and pathological amyloid share similar structural features, critical differences in packaging and kinetics of assembly enable the usage of Pmel17 amyloid for normal function. The discovery of native Pmel17 amyloid in mammals provides key insight into the molecular basis of both melanin formation and amyloid pathology, and demonstrates that native amyloid (amyloidin) may be an ancient, evolutionarily conserved protein quaternary structure underpinning diverse pathways contributing to normal cell and tissue physiology.

  6. A mammalian acetate switch regulates stress erythropoiesis

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Min; Nagati, Jason S.; Xie, Jian; Li, Jiwen; Walters, Holly; Moon, Young-Ah; Gerard, Robert D.; Huang, Chou-Long; Comerford, Sarah A.; Hammer, Robert E.; Horton, Jay D.; Chen, Rui; Garcia, Joseph A.

    2014-01-01

    Endocrine erythropoietin (Epo), which is synthesized in the kidney or liver of adult mammals, controls erythrocyte production and is regulated by the stress-responsive transcription factor Hypoxia Inducible Factor 2 (HIF-2). We previously reported that the lysine acetyltransferase Cbp is required for HIF-2α acetylation and efficient HIF-2 dependent Epo induction during hypoxia. We now show these processes require acetate-dependent acetyl CoA synthetase 2 (Acss2). In Hep3B hepatoma cells and in Epo-generating organs of hypoxic or acutely anemic mice, acetate levels increase and Acss2 is required for HIF-2α acetylation, Cbp/HIF-2α complex formation and recruitment to the Epo enhancer, and efficient Epo induction. In acutely anemic mice, acetate supplementation augments stress erythropoiesis in an Acss2-dependent manner. In acquired and genetic chronic anemia mouse models, acetate supplementation also increases Epo expression and resting hematocrits. Thus, a mammalian stress-responsive acetate switch controls HIF-2 signaling and Epo induction during pathophysiological states marked by tissue hypoxia. PMID:25108527

  7. Evolution of the mammalian dentate gyrus.

    PubMed

    Hevner, Robert F

    2016-02-15

    The dentate gyrus (DG), a part of the hippocampal formation, has important functions in learning, memory, and adult neurogenesis. Compared with homologous areas in sauropsids (birds and reptiles), the mammalian DG is larger and exhibits qualitatively different phenotypes: 1) folded (C- or V-shaped) granule neuron layer, concave toward the hilus and delimited by a hippocampal fissure; 2) nonperiventricular adult neurogenesis; and 3) prolonged ontogeny, involving extensive abventricular (basal) migration and proliferation of neural stem and progenitor cells (NSPCs). Although gaps remain, available data indicate that these DG traits are present in all orders of mammals, including monotremes and marsupials. The exception is Cetacea (whales, dolphins, and porpoises), in which DG size, convolution, and adult neurogenesis have undergone evolutionary regression. Parsimony suggests that increased growth and convolution of the DG arose in stem mammals concurrently with nonperiventricular adult hippocampal neurogenesis and basal migration of NSPCs during development. These traits could all result from an evolutionary change that enhanced radial migration of NSPCs out of the periventricular zones, possibly by epithelial-mesenchymal transition, to colonize and maintain nonperiventricular proliferative niches. In turn, increased NSPC migration and clonal expansion might be a consequence of growth in the cortical hem (medial patterning center), which produces morphogens such as Wnt3a, generates Cajal-Retzius neurons, and is regulated by Lhx2. Finally, correlations between DG convolution and neocortical gyrification (or capacity for gyrification) suggest that enhanced abventricular migration and proliferation of NSPCs played a transformative role in growth and folding of neocortex as well as archicortex.

  8. Repair of radiation damage in mammalian cells

    SciTech Connect

    Setlow, R.B.

    1981-01-01

    The responses, such as survival, mutation, and carcinogenesis, of mammalian cells and tissues to radiation are dependent not only on the magnitude of the damage to macromolecular structures - DNA, RNA, protein, and membranes - but on the rates of macromolecular syntheses of cells relative to the half-lives of the damages. Cells possess a number of mechanisms for repairing damage to DNA. If the repair systems are rapid and error free, cells can tolerate much larger doses than if repair is slow or error prone. It is important to understand the effects of radiation and the repair of radiation damage because there exist reasonable amounts of epidemiological data that permits the construction of dose-response curves for humans. The shapes of such curves or the magnitude of the response will depend on repair. Radiation damage is emphasized because: (a) radiation dosimetry, with all its uncertainties for populations, is excellent compared to chemical dosimetry; (b) a number of cancer-prone diseases are known in which there are defects in DNA repair and radiation results in more chromosomal damage in cells from such individuals than in cells from normal individuals; (c) in some cases, specific radiation products in DNA have been correlated with biological effects, and (d) many chemical effects seem to mimic radiation effects. A further reason for emphasizing damage to DNA is the wealth of experimental evidence indicating that damages to DNA can be initiating events in carcinogenesis.

  9. Activation of mammalian tyrosinase by ferrous ions.

    PubMed

    Palumbo, A; d'Ischia, M; Misuraca, G; Carratú, L; Prota, G

    1990-03-26

    Kinetic experiments are reported showing that mammalian tyrosinase from B16 mouse melanoma is significantly activated by catalytic amounts of ferrous ions. Monitoring of tyrosine oxidation by both dopachrome formation and oxygen consumption showed that ferrous ions at micromolar concentrations induce a marked enzymatic activity with 0.01 U/ml of highly purified tyrosinase, whereas no detectable reaction occurs in the absence of metal over a sufficiently prolonged period of time. The extent of the activating effect, which is specific for the reduced form of iron, is proportional to the concentration of the added metal with a typical saturation profile, no further effect being observed beyond a threshold value. Changing the buffer system from phosphate to hepes or tris results in a marked decrease of the Fe2(+)-induced activation. Scavengers of active oxygen species, such as superoxide dismutase, catalase, formate and mannitol have no detectable effect on the tyrosinase activity. These results are accounted for in terms of an activation mechanism involving reduction of the cupric ions at the active site of the resting enzyme.

  10. Tubulin dynamics in cultured mammalian cells

    PubMed Central

    1984-01-01

    Bovine neurotubulin has been labeled with dichlorotriazinyl- aminofluorescein (DTAF-tubulin) and microinjected into cultured mammalian cells strains PTK1 and BSC. The fibrous, fluorescence patterns that developed in the microinjected cells were almost indistinguishable from the pattern of microtubules seen in the same cells by indirect immunofluorescence. DTAF-tubulin participated in the formation of all visible, microtubule-related structures at all cell cycle stages for at least 48 h after injection. Treatments of injected cells with Nocodazole or Taxol showed that DTAF-tubulin closely mimicked the behavior of endogenous tubulin. The rate at which microtubules incorporated DTAF-tubulin depended on the cell-cycle stage of the injected cell. Mitotic microtubules became fluorescent within seconds while interphase microtubules required minutes. Studies using fluorescence redistribution after photobleaching confirmed this apparent difference in tubulin dynamics between mitotic and interphase cells. The temporal patterns of redistribution included a rapid phase (approximately 3 s) that we attribute to diffusion of free DTAF-tubulin and a second, slower phase that seems to represent the exchange of bleached DTAF-tubulin in microtubules with free, unbleached DTAF- tubulin. Mean half times of redistribution were 18-fold shorter in mitotic cells than they were in interphase cells. PMID:6501419

  11. Cell fate regulation in early mammalian development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oron, Efrat; Ivanova, Natalia

    2012-08-01

    Preimplantation development in mammals encompasses a period from fertilization to implantation and results in formation of a blastocyst composed of three distinct cell lineages: epiblast, trophectoderm and primitive endoderm. The epiblast gives rise to the organism, while the trophectoderm and the primitive endoderm contribute to extraembryonic tissues that support embryo development after implantation. In many vertebrates, such as frog or fish, maternally supplied lineage determinants are partitioned within the egg. Cell cleavage that follows fertilization results in polarization of these factors between the individual blastomeres, which become restricted in their developmental fate. In contrast, the mouse oocyte and zygote lack clear polarity and, until the eight-cell stage, individual blastomeres retain the potential to form all lineages. How are cell lineages specified in the absence of a maternally supplied blueprint? This is a fundamental question in the field of developmental biology. The answer to this question lies in understanding the cell-cell interactions and gene networks involved in embryonic development prior to implantation and using this knowledge to create testable models of the developmental processes that govern cell fates. We provide an overview of classic and contemporary models of early lineage development in the mouse and discuss the emerging body of work that highlights similarities and differences between blastocyst development in the mouse and other mammalian species.

  12. The non-mammalian MIF superfamily.

    PubMed

    Sparkes, Amanda; De Baetselier, Patrick; Roelants, Kim; De Trez, Carl; Magez, Stefan; Van Ginderachter, Jo A; Raes, Geert; Bucala, Richard; Stijlemans, Benoît

    2017-03-01

    Macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF) was first described as a cytokine 50 years ago, and emerged in mammals as a pleiotropic protein with pro-inflammatory, chemotactic, and growth-promoting activities. In addition, MIF has gained substantial attention as a pivotal upstream mediator of innate and adaptive immune responses and with pathologic roles in several diseases. Of less importance in mammals is an intrinsic but non-physiologic enzymatic activity that points to MIF's evolution from an ancient defense molecule. Therefore, it is not surprising that mif-like genes also have been found across a range of different organisms including bacteria, plants, ‎protozoa, helminths, molluscs, arthropods, fish, amphibians and birds. While Genebank analysis identifying mif-like genes across species is extensive, contained herein is an overview of the non-mammalian MIF-like proteins that have been most well studied experimentally. For many of these organisms, MIF contributes to an innate defense system or plays a role in development. For parasitic organisms however, MIF appears to function as a virulence factor aiding in the establishment or persistence of infection by modulating the host immune response. Consequently, a combined targeting of both parasitic and host MIF could lead to more effective treatment strategies for parasitic diseases of socioeconomic importance.

  13. Mammalian prion amyloid formation in bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Macedo, Bruno; Cordeiro, Yraima; Ventura, Salvador

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Mammalian prion proteins (PrPs) that cause transmissible spongiform encephalopathies are misfolded conformations of the host cellular PrP. The misfolded form, the scrapie PrP (PrPSc), can aggregate into amyloid fibrils that progressively accumulate in the brain, evolving to a pathological phenotype. A particular characteristic of PrPSc is to be found as different strains, related to the diversity of conformational states it can adopt. Prion strains are responsible for the multiple phenotypes observed in prion diseases, presenting different incubation times and diverse deposition profiles in the brain. PrP biochemical properties are also strain-dependent, such as different digestion pattern after proteolysis and different stability. Although they have long been studied, strain formation is still a major unsolved issue in prion biology. The recreation of strain-specific conformational features is of fundamental importance to study this unique pathogenic phenomenon. In our recent paper, we described that murine PrP, when expressed in bacteria, forms amyloid inclusion bodies that possess different strain-like characteristics, depending on the PrP construct. Here, we present an extra-view of these data and propose that bacteria might become a successful model to generate preparative amounts of prion strain-specific assemblies for high-resolution structural analysis as well as for addressing the determinants of infectivity and transmissibility. PMID:26910379

  14. Timing of circadian genes in mammalian tissues

    PubMed Central

    Korenčič, Anja; Košir, Rok; Bordyugov, Grigory; Lehmann, Robert; Rozman, Damjana; Herzel, Hanspeter

    2014-01-01

    Circadian clocks are endogenous oscillators driving daily rhythms in physiology. The cell-autonomous clock is governed by an interlocked network of transcriptional feedback loops. Hundreds of clock-controlled genes (CCGs) regulate tissue specific functions. Transcriptome studies reveal that different organs (e.g. liver, heart, adrenal gland) feature substantially varying sets of CCGs with different peak phase distributions. To study the phase variability of CCGs in mammalian peripheral tissues, we develop a core clock model for mouse liver and adrenal gland based on expression profiles and known cis-regulatory sites. ‘Modulation factors’ associated with E-boxes, ROR-elements, and D-boxes can explain variable rhythms of CCGs, which is demonstrated for differential regulation of cytochromes P450 and 12 h harmonics. By varying model parameters we explore how tissue-specific peak phase distributions can be generated. The central role of E-boxes and ROR-elements is confirmed by analysing ChIP-seq data of BMAL1 and REV-ERB transcription factors. PMID:25048020

  15. Roles of the oviduct in mammalian fertilization

    PubMed Central

    Coy, P; García-Vázquez, FA; Visconti, PE; Avilés, M

    2014-01-01

    The oviduct or Fallopian tube is the anatomical region where every new life begins in mammalian species. After a long journey, the spermatozoa meet the oocyte in the specific site of the oviduct named ampulla, and fertilization takes place. The successful fertilization depends on several biological processes which occur in the oviduct some hours before this rendezvous and affect both gametes. Estrogen and progesterone, released from the ovary, orchestrate a series of changes by genomic- and non-genomic pathways in the oviductal epithelium affecting gene expression, proteome and secretion of its cells into the fluid bathing the oviductal lumen. In addition, new regulatory molecules are being discovered playing important roles in oviductal physiology and fertilization. The present review tries to describe these processes, building a comprehensive map of the physiology of the oviduct, to better understand the importance of this organ in reproduction. With this purpose, gamete transport, sperm and oocyte changes in the oviductal environment and other interactions between gametes and oviduct are discussed in light of recent publications in the field. PMID:23028122

  16. Genetically programmed superparamagnetic behavior of mammalian cells.

    PubMed

    Kim, Taeuk; Moore, David; Fussenegger, Martin

    2012-12-31

    Although magnetic fields and paramagnetic inorganic materials were abundant on planet earth during the entire evolution of living species the interaction of organisms with these physical forces remains a little-understood phenomenon. Interestingly, rather than being genetically encoded, organisms seem to accumulate and take advantage of inorganic nanoparticles to sense or react to magnetic fields. Using a synthetic biology-inspired approach we have genetically programmed mammalian cells to show superparamagnetic behavior. The combination of ectopic production of the human ferritin heavy chain 1 (hFTH1), engineering the cells for expression of an iron importer, the divalent metal ion transferase 1 (DMT1) and the design of an iron-loading culture medium to maximize cellular iron uptake enabled efficient iron mineralization in intracellular ferritin particles and conferred superparamagnetic behavior to the entire cell. When captured by a magnetic field the superparamagnetic cells reached attraction velocities of up to 30 μm/s and could be efficiently separated from complex cell mixtures using standard magnetic cell separation equipment. Technology that enables magnetic separation of genetically programmed superparamagnetic cells in the absence of inorganic particles could foster novel opportunities in diagnostics and cell-based therapies.

  17. Late Quaternary mammalian zoogeography of eastern Washington

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lyman, R. Lee; Livingston, Stephanie D.

    1983-11-01

    The late Quaternary mammalian zoogeographic history of eastern Washington as revealed by archaeological and paleontological research conforms to a set of past environmental conditions inferred from botanical data. During the relatively cool and moist late Pleistocene and early Holocene, Cervus cf. elaphus, Ovis canadensis, Vulpes vulpes, Martes americana, Alopex lagopus, and perhaps Rangifer sp., taxa with ecological preferences for mesic steppe habitats, were present in the now xeric Columbia Basin. As the climate became progressively warmer and drier during the late Pleistocene and early Holocene, Antilocapra americana, Onychomys leucogaster, Spermophilus townsendii, and Neotoma cinerea, taxa with ecological preferences for xeric steppe habitats, appear in the Columbia Basin. Bison sp. and Taxidea taxus may have been present in eastern Washington for the last 20,000 yr. Middle and late Holocene records for Oreamnos americanus, Spermophilus columbianus, S. townsendii, Lagurus curtatus, and Urocyon cinereoargenteus in central eastern Washington suggest fluctuations in the ranges of these taxa that conform to a middle Holocene period of less effective precipitation and a ca. 3500-yr-old period of more effective precipitation before essentially modern environmental conditions prevailed.

  18. Historical Perspectives: plasticity of mammalian skeletal muscle.

    PubMed

    Pette, D

    2001-03-01

    More than 40 years ago, the nerve cross-union experiment of Buller, Eccles, and Eccles provided compelling evidence for the essential role of innervation in determining the properties of mammalian skeletal muscle fibers. Moreover, this experiment revealed that terminally differentiated muscle fibers are not inalterable but are highly versatile entities capable of changing their phenotype from fast to slow or slow to fast. With the use of various experimental models, numerous studies have since confirmed and extended the notion of muscle plasticity. Together, these studies demonstrated that motoneuron-specific impulse patterns, neuromuscular activity, and mechanical loading play important roles in both the maintenance and transition of muscle fiber phenotypes. Depending on the type, intensity, and duration of changes in any of these factors, muscle fibers adjust their phenotype to meet the altered functional demands. Fiber-type transitions resulting from multiple qualitative and quantitative changes in gene expression occur sequentially in a regular order within a spectrum of pure and hybrid fiber types.

  19. Apoptosis in mammalian oocytes: a review.

    PubMed

    Tiwari, Meenakshi; Prasad, Shilpa; Tripathi, Anima; Pandey, Ashutosh N; Ali, Irfan; Singh, Arvind K; Shrivastav, Tulsidas G; Chaube, Shail K

    2015-08-01

    Apoptosis causes elimination of more than 99% of germ cells from cohort of ovary through follicular atresia. Less than 1% of germ cells, which are culminated in oocytes further undergo apoptosis during last phases of oogenesis and depletes ovarian reserve in most of the mammalian species including human. There are several players that induce apoptosis directly or indirectly in oocytes at various stages of meiotic cell cycle. Premature removal of encircling granulosa cells from immature oocytes, reduced levels of adenosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate and guanosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate, increased levels of calcium (Ca(2+)) and oxidants, sustained reduced level of maturation promoting factor, depletion of survival factors, nutrients and cell cycle proteins, reduced meiotic competency, increased levels of proapoptotic as well as apoptotic factors lead to oocyte apoptosis. The BH3-only proteins also act as key regulators of apoptosis in oocyte within the ovary. Both intrinsic (mitochondria-mediated) as well as extrinsic (cell surface death receptor-mediated) pathways are involved in oocyte apoptosis. BID, a BH3-only protein act as a bridge between both apoptotic pathways and its cleavage activates cell death machinery of both the pathways inside the follicular microenvironment. Oocyte apoptosis leads to the depletion of ovarian reserve that directly affects reproductive outcome of various mammals including human. In this review article, we highlight some of the important players and describe the pathways involved during oocyte apoptosis in mammals.

  20. Ventricular Fibrillation in Mammalian Hearts: Simulation Results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fenton, Flavio H.

    2002-03-01

    The computational approach to understanding the initiation and evolution of cardiac arrhythmias forms a necessary link between experiment and theory. Numerical simulations combine useful mathematical models and complex geometry while offering clean and comprehensive data acquisition, reproducible results that can be compared to experiments, and the flexibility of exploring parameter space systematically. However, because cardiac dynamics occurs on many scales (on the order of 10^9 cells of size 10-100 microns with more than 40 ionic currents and time scales as fast as 0.01ms), roughly 10^17 operations are required to simulate just one second of real time. These intense computational requirements lead to significant implementation challenges even on existing supercomputers. Nevertheless, progress over the last decade in understanding the effects of some spatial scales and spatio-temporal dynamics on cardiac cell and tissue behavior justifies the use of certain simplifications which, along with improved models for cellular dynamics and detailed digital models of cardiac anatomy, are allowing simulation studies of full-size ventricles and atria. We describe this simulation problem from a combined numerical, physical and biological point of view, with an emphasis on the dynamics and stability of scroll waves of electrical activity in mammalian hearts and their relation to tachycardia, fibrillation and sudden death. Detailed simulations of electrical activity in ventricles including complex anatomy, anisotropic fiber structure, and electrophysiological effects of two drugs (DAM and CytoD) are presented and compared with experimental results.

  1. Cholesterol, the central lipid of mammalian cells

    PubMed Central

    Maxfield, Frederick R.; van Meer, Gerrit

    2010-01-01

    Summary of recent advances Despite its importance for mammalian cell biology and human health, there are many basic aspects of cholesterol homeostasis that are not well understood. Even for the well-characterized delivery of cholesterol to cells via lipoproteins, a novel regulatory mechanism has been discovered recently, involving a serum protein called PCSK9, which profoundly affects lipoproteins and their receptors. Cells can export cholesterol by processes that require the activity of ABC transporters, but the molecular mechanisms for cholesterol transport remain unclear. Cholesterol levels in different organelles vary by 5–10 fold, and the mechanisms for maintaining these differences are now partially understood. Several proteins have been proposed to play a role in the inter-organelle movement of cholesterol, but many aspects of the mechanisms for regulating intracellular transport and distribution of cholesterol remain to be worked out. The endoplasmic reticulum is the main organelle responsible for regulation of cholesterol synthesis, and careful measurements have shown that the proteins responsible for sterol sensing respond over a very narrow range of cholesterol concentrations to provide very precise, switch-like control over cholesterol synthesis. PMID:20627678

  2. Nitric oxide negatively regulates mammalian adult neurogenesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Packer, Michael A.; Stasiv, Yuri; Benraiss, Abdellatif; Chmielnicki, Eva; Grinberg, Alexander; Westphal, Heiner; Goldman, Steven A.; Enikolopov, Grigori

    2003-08-01

    Neural progenitor cells are widespread throughout the adult central nervous system but only give rise to neurons in specific loci. Negative regulators of neurogenesis have therefore been postulated, but none have yet been identified as subserving a significant role in the adult brain. Here we report that nitric oxide (NO) acts as an important negative regulator of cell proliferation in the adult mammalian brain. We used two independent approaches to examine the function of NO in adult neurogenesis. In a pharmacological approach, we suppressed NO production in the rat brain by intraventricular infusion of an NO synthase inhibitor. In a genetic approach, we generated a null mutant neuronal NO synthase knockout mouse line by targeting the exon encoding active center of the enzyme. In both models, the number of new cells generated in neurogenic areas of the adult brain, the olfactory subependyma and the dentate gyrus, was strongly augmented, which indicates that division of neural stem cells in the adult brain is controlled by NO and suggests a strategy for enhancing neurogenesis in the adult central nervous system.

  3. Movement Symmetries and the Mammalian Vestibular System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McCollum, Gin; Boyle, Richard

    2000-03-01

    Unity of movement requires vertebrates to have an ability to symmetrize along the midline. For example, human erect stance involves symmetry with respect to gravity. The mammalian vestibular system provides a mechanism for maintaining symmetries, which is also open to influence and adaptation by the rest of the organism. The vestibular system includes the inner ear endorgans and central nuclei, along with projections to oculomotor, cerebellar, thalamic, and spinal motor centers. The vestibular endorgans - the semicircular canals and the otoliths - use sensory hairs to register inertia. The vestibular endorgans are right-left symmetric and the semicircular canals form an approximately orthogonal coordinate system for angular motion. Primary afferent axons project from the endorgans to the vestibular nuclei (and a few other places). The vestibular nuclei integrate vestibular, visual, and somatosensory signals, along with a proposed copy of the voluntary motor command and signals from other central structures. The relationship between the canals and the otoliths gives rise to symmetries among neurons, in the organization among the several vestibular nuclei, and in the projections from the vestibular nuclei. These symmetries organize the space of body movements so that functional relationships are maintained in spite of the many free variables of body movement. They also provide a foundation for adaptive reinterpretation of the relationship between canal and otolith signals, for example in freefall.

  4. Characterization of hibernating ribosomes in mammalian cells.

    PubMed

    Krokowski, Dawid; Gaccioli, Francesca; Majumder, Mithu; Mullins, Michael R; Yuan, Celvie L; Papadopoulou, Barbara; Merrick, William C; Komar, Anton A; Taylor, Derek; Hatzoglou, Maria

    2011-08-15

    Protein synthesis across kingdoms involves the assembly of 70S (prokaryotes) or 80S (eukaryotes) ribosomes on the mRNAs to be translated. 70S ribosomes are protected from degradation in bacteria during stationary growth or stress conditions by forming dimers that migrate in polysome profiles as 100S complexes. Formation of ribosome dimers in Escherichia coli is mediated by proteins, namely the ribosome modulation factor (RMF), which is induced in the stationary phase of cell growth. It is reported here a similar ribosomal complex of 110S in eukaryotic cells, which forms during nutrient starvation. The dynamic nature of the 110S ribosomal complex (mammalian equivalent of the bacterial 100S) was supported by the rapid conversion into polysomes upon nutrient-refeeding via a mechanism sensitive to inhibitors of translation initiation. Several experiments were used to show that the 110S complex is a dimer of nontranslating ribosomes. Cryo-electron microscopy visualization of the 110S complex revealed that two 80S ribosomes are connected by a flexible, albeit localized, interaction. We conclude that, similarly to bacteria, rat cells contain stress-induced ribosomal dimers. The identification of ribosomal dimers in rat cells will bring new insights in our thinking of the ribosome structure and its function during the cellular response to stress conditions.

  5. Network features of the mammalian circadian clock.

    PubMed

    Baggs, Julie E; Price, Tom S; DiTacchio, Luciano; Panda, Satchidananda; Fitzgerald, Garret A; Hogenesch, John B

    2009-03-10

    The mammalian circadian clock is a cell-autonomous system that drives oscillations in behavior and physiology in anticipation of daily environmental change. To assess the robustness of a human molecular clock, we systematically depleted known clock components and observed that circadian oscillations are maintained over a wide range of disruptions. We developed a novel strategy termed Gene Dosage Network Analysis (GDNA) in which small interfering RNA (siRNA)-induced dose-dependent changes in gene expression were used to build gene association networks consistent with known biochemical constraints. The use of multiple doses powered the analysis to uncover several novel network features of the circadian clock, including proportional responses and signal propagation through interacting genetic modules. We also observed several examples where a gene is up-regulated following knockdown of its paralog, suggesting the clock network utilizes active compensatory mechanisms rather than simple redundancy to confer robustness and maintain function. We propose that these network features act in concert as a genetic buffering system to maintain clock function in the face of genetic and environmental perturbation.

  6. Input reconstruction of chaos sensors.

    PubMed

    Yu, Dongchuan; Liu, Fang; Lai, Pik-Yin

    2008-06-01

    Although the sensitivity of sensors can be significantly enhanced using chaotic dynamics due to its extremely sensitive dependence on initial conditions and parameters, how to reconstruct the measured signal from the distorted sensor response becomes challenging. In this paper we suggest an effective method to reconstruct the measured signal from the distorted (chaotic) response of chaos sensors. This measurement signal reconstruction method applies the neural network techniques for system structure identification and therefore does not require the precise information of the sensor's dynamics. We discuss also how to improve the robustness of reconstruction. Some examples are presented to illustrate the measurement signal reconstruction method suggested.

  7. Epiglottic reconstruction and subtotal laryngectomy.

    PubMed

    Schechter, G L

    1983-06-01

    Vertical hemilaryngectomy has been expanded aggressively in recent years so that, in some cases, the term subtotal laryngectomy would be more appropriate. Reconstruction after these extended resections is a problem. Intraluminal stenting has not been successful in cases where resection has been aggressive. The resulting lumen is inadequate. As a means of overcoming this problem, the epiglottic reconstruction procedure has been promoted. This paper presents experiences with 12 patients who underwent epiglottic reconstruction after subtotal laryngectomy. Indications, anatomic details, and overall results using this reconstructive technique are outlined. It is the conclusion of the author that epiglottic reconstruction is an effective procedure for preservation of function after subtotal laryngectomy.

  8. Scapholunate Ligament Reconstruction

    PubMed Central

    Ross, Mark; Loveridge, Jeremy; Cutbush, Kenneth; Couzens, Greg

    2013-01-01

    Background Scapholunate reconstruction poses a challenge to orthopedic surgeons. Materials and Methods Prospective cohort. Description of Technique Our technique for scapholunate (SL) reconstruction involves ligament reconstruction utilizing a portion of the flexor carpi radialis tendon rerouted via transosseous tunnels across the scaphoid, lunate, and triquetrum (scapholunotriquetral tenodesis). The tendon graft is secured with interference screw fixation into the triquetrum. The philosophy of this new technique is to reduce subluxation and maintain the relationship between scaphoid and lunate by placing a graft through the center of the SL articulation. This graft is then tensioned by passing it centrally through the lunate and triquetrum and secured using an interference screw in the triquetrum. Secondary stabilizers, including the dorsal intercarpal ligament, are then augmented by passing the graft back to the scaphoid, crossing from the triquetrum over the proximal capitate. This further reinforces the translational relationship between the scaphoid and the triquetrum and, therefore, augments stability of the SL articulation. Results We have utilized this technique successfully in over 40 patients since 2009. We report on a prospective consecutive series of 11 patients with over 12 months follow-up (range 12 to 24 months) demonstrating good early radiological and clinical outcomes. Conclusions In developing this technique, we aimed to take the best features of previously described techniques and address the perceived shortcomings of each. We believe there are several benefits of our technique. Moreover, few other techniques address as many of the aspects of chronic SL instability as our technique does. PMID:24436802

  9. A detailed genome-wide reconstruction of mouse metabolism based on human Recon 1

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Well-curated and validated network reconstructions are extremely valuable tools in systems biology. Detailed metabolic reconstructions of mammals have recently emerged, including human reconstructions. They raise the question if the various successful applications of microbial reconstructions can be replicated in complex organisms. Results We mapped the published, detailed reconstruction of human metabolism (Recon 1) to other mammals. By searching for genes homologous to Recon 1 genes within mammalian genomes, we were able to create draft metabolic reconstructions of five mammals, including the mouse. Each draft reconstruction was created in compartmentalized and non-compartmentalized version via two different approaches. Using gap-filling algorithms, we were able to produce all cellular components with three out of four versions of the mouse metabolic reconstruction. We finalized a functional model by iterative testing until it passed a predefined set of 260 validation tests. The reconstruction is the largest, most comprehensive mouse reconstruction to-date, accounting for 1,415 genes coding for 2,212 gene-associated reactions and 1,514 non-gene-associated reactions. We tested the mouse model for phenotype prediction capabilities. The majority of predicted essential genes were also essential in vivo. However, our non-tissue specific model was unable to predict gene essentiality for many of the metabolic genes shown to be essential in vivo. Our knockout simulation of the lipoprotein lipase gene correlated well with experimental results, suggesting that softer phenotypes can also be simulated. Conclusions We have created a high-quality mouse genome-scale metabolic reconstruction, iMM1415 (Mus Musculus, 1415 genes). We demonstrate that the mouse model can be used to perform phenotype simulations, similar to models of microbe metabolism. Since the mouse is an important experimental organism, this model should become an essential tool for studying metabolic

  10. Mitochondrial inheritance is mediated by microtubules in mammalian cell division.

    PubMed

    Lawrence, Elizabeth; Mandato, Craig

    2013-11-01

    The mitochondrial network fragments and becomes uniformly dispersed within the cytoplasm when mammalian cells enter mitosis. Such morphology and distribution of mitochondria was previously thought to facilitate the stochastic inheritance of mitochondria by daughter cells. In contrast, we recently reported that mitochondria in dividing mammalian cells are inherited by an ordered mechanism of inheritance mediated by microtubules. We showed that mitochondria are progressively enriched at the cell equator and depleted at the poles throughout division. Furthermore, the mitochondrial distribution during division is dependent on microtubules, indicating an ordered inheritance strategy. The microtubule-mediated positioning of mitochondria in dividing mammalian cells may have functional consequences for cell division and/or mitochondrial inheritance.

  11. Posteromedial Corner Reconstruction

    PubMed Central

    Ferrer, Gonzalo; Leon, Agustín; Wirth, Hans; Mena, Adolfo; Tuca, María José; Espinoza, Gonzalo

    2017-01-01

    Objective: Report the experience, after 1-year follow-up, of 30 patients who underwent anatomical knee reconstruction of posteromedial corner (PMC) injuries, using La Prade´s Technique. Methods: Retrospective cohort study of 30 consecutive patients with PMC injuries operated between November 2010 and May 2014 by the same surgical team. Inclusion criteria: patients with clinical presentation and images (stress radiographs and MRI) compatible with PMC injury, who maintained a grade III chronic instability in spite of at least 3 months of orthopedic treatment, who were reconstructed using La Prade’s anatomical technique, and completed at least 12 months of follow-up. Exclusion criteria: discordance between clinical and image studies, grade I or II medial instability, and surgery performed through a different technique. Data was collected by reviewing the electronic files and images. Functional scores (IKDC and Lysholm) were applied and registered in the preoperative evaluation, and then 6 and 12 months after surgery. Results: Thirty patients (28 men and 2 women) met the inclusion criteria. Mean age was 43 years (24-69). The vast majority (28 patients) had a high-energy mechanism of injury. Twenty patients were diagnosed in the acute setting, while 10 had a delayed diagnosis after poor results of concomitant ligament reconstructions. With the exception of 2 patients, who presented with isolated PMC injury, the majority had associated injuries as detailed: 11 cases had PMC + anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury, 3 patients had PMC + posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) injury, 3 patients had PMC + meniscal tears, 9 patients had PMC + ACL + PCL injuries, and there were 2 cases of PMC + ACL + PCL + lateral collateral ligament injuries. Mean time for PMC reconstruction surgery was 5 months (range 2-32). Lysholm and IKDC scores were 18,2 (2-69) and 24,3 (9,2-52,9) respectively in the preoperative setting, improving to 76,7 (44-94) and 70,7 (36,8-95,4) after 1-year follow

  12. Hominin life history: reconstruction and evolution

    PubMed Central

    Robson, Shannen L; Wood, Bernard

    2008-01-01

    In this review we attempt to reconstruct the evolutionary history of hominin life history from extant and fossil evidence. We utilize demographic life history theory and distinguish life history variables, traits such as weaning, age at sexual maturity, and life span, from life history-related variables such as body mass, brain growth, and dental development. The latter are either linked with, or can be used to make inferences about, life history, thus providing an opportunity for estimating life history parameters in fossil taxa. We compare the life history variables of modern great apes and identify traits that are likely to be shared by the last common ancestor of Pan-Homo and those likely to be derived in hominins. All great apes exhibit slow life histories and we infer this to be true of the last common ancestor of Pan-Homo and the stem hominin. Modern human life histories are even slower, exhibiting distinctively long post-menopausal life spans and later ages at maturity, pointing to a reduction in adult mortality since the Pan-Homo split. We suggest that lower adult mortality, distinctively short interbirth intervals, and early weaning characteristic of modern humans are derived features resulting from cooperative breeding. We evaluate the fidelity of three life history-related variables, body mass, brain growth and dental development, with the life history parameters of living great apes. We found that body mass is the best predictor of great ape life history events. Brain growth trajectories and dental development and eruption are weakly related proxies and inferences from them should be made with caution. We evaluate the evidence of life history-related variables available for extinct species and find that prior to the transitional hominins there is no evidence of any hominin taxon possessing a body size, brain size or aspects of dental development much different from what we assume to be the primitive life history pattern for the Pan-Homo clade. Data for

  13. Multilocus phylogeny reconstruction: new insights into the evolutionary history of the genus Petunia.

    PubMed

    Reck-Kortmann, Maikel; Silva-Arias, Gustavo Adolfo; Segatto, Ana Lúcia Anversa; Mäder, Geraldo; Bonatto, Sandro Luis; de Freitas, Loreta Brandão

    2014-12-01

    The phylogeny of Petunia species has been difficult to resolve, primarily due to the recent diversification of the genus. Several studies have included molecular data in phylogenetic reconstructions of this genus, but all of them have failed to include all taxa and/or analyzed few genetic markers. In the present study, we employed the most inclusive genetic and taxonomic datasets for the genus, aiming to reconstruct the evolutionary history of Petunia based on molecular phylogeny, biogeographic distribution, and character evolution. We included all 20 Petunia morphological species or subspecies in these analyses. Based on nine nuclear and five plastid DNA markers, our phylogenetic analysis reinforces the monophyly of the genus Petunia and supports the hypothesis that the basal divergence is more related to the differentiation of corolla tube length, whereas the geographic distribution of species is more related to divergences within these main clades. Ancestral area reconstructions suggest the Pampas region as the area of origin and earliest divergence in Petunia. The state reconstructions suggest that the ancestor of Petunia might have had a short corolla tube and a bee pollination floral syndrome.

  14. Reconstruction of an ancestral Yersinia pestis genome and comparison with an ancient sequence

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Background We propose the computational reconstruction of a whole bacterial ancestral genome at the nucleotide scale, and its validation by a sequence of ancient DNA. This rare possibility is offered by an ancient sequence of the late middle ages plague agent. It has been hypothesized to be ancestral to extant Yersinia pestis strains based on the pattern of nucleotide substitutions. But the dynamics of indels, duplications, insertion sequences and rearrangements has impacted all genomes much more than the substitution process, which makes the ancestral reconstruction task challenging. Results We use a set of gene families from 13 Yersinia species, construct reconciled phylogenies for all of them, and determine gene orders in ancestral species. Gene trees integrate information from the sequence, the species tree and gene order. We reconstruct ancestral sequences for ancestral genic and intergenic regions, providing nearly a complete genome sequence for the ancestor, containing a chromosome and three plasmids. Conclusion The comparison of the ancestral and ancient sequences provides a unique opportunity to assess the quality of ancestral genome reconstruction methods. But the quality of the sequencing and assembly of the ancient sequence can also be questioned by this comparison. PMID:26450112

  15. Repair of furocoumarin adducts in mammalian cells

    SciTech Connect

    Zolan, M.E.; Smith, C.A.; Hanawalt, P.C.

    1984-12-01

    DNA repair was studied in cultured mammalian cells treated with the furocoumarins 8-methoxypsoralen (8-MOP), aminomethyl trioxsalen, or angelicin and irradiated with near UV light. The amount of DNA cross-linked by 8-MOP in normal human cells decreased by about one-half in 24 hours after treatment; no decrease was observed in xeroderma pigmentosum cells, group A. At present, it is not known to what extent this decrease represents complete repair events at the sites of cross-links. Furocoumarin adducts elicited excision repair in normal human and monkey cells but not in xeroderma pigmentosum group A cells. This excision repair resembled in several aspects that elicited by pyrimidine dimers, formed in DNA by irradiation with 254-nm UV light; however, it appeared that for at least 8-MOP and aminomethyl trioxsalen, removal of adducts was not as efficient as was the removal of pyrimidine dimers. A comparison was also made of repair in the 172-base-pair repetitive alpha-DNA component of monkey cells to repair in the bulk of the genome. Although repair elicited by pyrimidine dimers in alpha-DNA was the same as in the bulk DNA, that following treatment of cells with either aminomethyl trioxsalen or angelicin and near UV was markedly deficient in alpha-DNA. This deficiency reflected the removal of fewer adducts from alpha-DNA after the same initial adduct frequencies. These results could mean that each furocoumarin may produce several structurally distinct adducts to DNA in cells and that the capacity of cellular repair systems to remove these various adducts may vary greatly.

  16. Ontogenetic development of the mammalian circadian system.

    PubMed

    Weinert, Dietmar

    2005-01-01

    This review summarizes the current knowledge about the ontogenetic development of the circadian system in mammals. The developmental changes of overt rhythms are discussed, although the main focus of the review is the underlying neuronal and molecular mechanisms. In addition, the review describes ontogenetic development, not only as a process of morpho-functional maturation. The need of repeated adaptations and readaptations due to changing developmental stage and environmental conditions is also considered. The review analyzes mainly rodent data, obtained from the literature and from the author's own studies. Results from other species, including humans, are presented to demonstrate common features and species-dependent differences. The review first describes the development of the suprachiasmatic nuclei as the central pacemaker system and shows that intrinsic circadian rhythms are already generated in the mammalian fetus. As in adult organisms, the period length is different from 24 h and needs continuous correction by environmental periodicities, or zeitgebers. The investigation of the ontogenetic development of the mechanisms of entrainment reveals that, at prenatal and early postnatal stages, non-photic cues deriving from the mother are effective. Light-dark entrainment develops later. At a certain age, both photic and non-photic zeitgebers may act in parallel, even though the respective time information is 12 h out of phase. That leads to a temporary internal desynchronization. Because rhythmic information needs to be transferred to effector organs, the corresponding neural and humoral signalling pathways are also briefly described. Finally, to be able to transform a rhythmic signal into an overt rhythm, the corresponding effector organs must be functionally mature. As many of these organs are able to generate their own intrinsic rhythms, another aspect of the review is dedicated to the development of peripheral oscillators and mechanisms of their entrainment

  17. Assays for mammalian tyrosinase: a comparative study

    SciTech Connect

    Jara, J.R.; Solano, F.; Lozano, J.A.

    1988-01-01

    This work describes a comparative study of the tyrosinase activity determined using three methods which are the most extensively employed; two radiometric assays using L-tyrosine as substrate (tyrosine hydroxylase and melanin formation activities) and one spectrophotometric assay using L-dopa (dopa oxidase activity). The three methods were simultaneously employed to measure the activities of the soluble, melanosomal, and microsomal tyrosinase isozymes from Harding-Passey mouse melanoma through their purification processes. The aim of this study was to find any correlation among the tyrosinase activities measured by the three different assays and to determine whether that correlation varied with the isozyme and its degree of purification. The results show that mammalian tyrosinase has a greater turnover number for L-dopa than for L-tyrosine. Thus, enzyme activity, expressed as mumol of substrate transformed per min, is higher in assays using L-dopa as substrate than those using L-tyrosine. Moreover, the percentage of hydroxylated L-tyrosine that is converted into melanin is low and is affected by several factors, apparently decreasing the tyrosinase activity measured by the melanin formation assay. Bearing these considerations in mind, average interassay factors are proposed. Their values are 10 to transform melanin formation into tyrosine hydroxylase activity, 100 to transform tyrosine hydroxylase into dopa oxidase activity, and 1,000 to transform melanin formation into dopa oxidase activity. Variations in these values due to the presence in the tyrosinase preparations of either inhibitors or regulatory factors in melanogenesis independent of tyrosinase are also discussed.

  18. Functional Evolution of Mammalian Odorant Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Adipietro, Kaylin A.; Mainland, Joel D.; Matsunami, Hiroaki

    2012-01-01

    The mammalian odorant receptor (OR) repertoire is an attractive model to study evolution, because ORs have been subjected to rapid evolution between species, presumably caused by changes of the olfactory system to adapt to the environment. However, functional assessment of ORs in related species remains largely untested. Here we investigated the functional properties of primate and rodent ORs to determine how well evolutionary distance predicts functional characteristics. Using human and mouse ORs with previously identified ligands, we cloned 18 OR orthologs from chimpanzee and rhesus macaque and 17 mouse-rat orthologous pairs that are broadly representative of the OR repertoire. We functionally characterized the in vitro responses of ORs to a wide panel of odors and found similar ligand selectivity but dramatic differences in response magnitude. 87% of human-primate orthologs and 94% of mouse-rat orthologs showed differences in receptor potency (EC50) and/or efficacy (dynamic range) to an individual ligand. Notably dN/dS ratio, an indication of selective pressure during evolution, does not predict functional similarities between orthologs. Additionally, we found that orthologs responded to a common ligand 82% of the time, while human OR paralogs of the same subfamily responded to the common ligand only 33% of the time. Our results suggest that, while OR orthologs tend to show conserved ligand selectivity, their potency and/or efficacy dynamically change during evolution, even in closely related species. These functional changes in orthologs provide a platform for examining how the evolution of ORs can meet species-specific demands. PMID:22807691

  19. The impact of transposable elements on mammalian development.

    PubMed

    Garcia-Perez, Jose L; Widmann, Thomas J; Adams, Ian R

    2016-11-15

    Despite often being classified as selfish or junk DNA, transposable elements (TEs) are a group of abundant genetic sequences that have a significant impact on mammalian development and genome regulation. In recent years, our understanding of how pre-existing TEs affect genome architecture, gene regulatory networks and protein function during mammalian embryogenesis has dramatically expanded. In addition, the mobilization of active TEs in selected cell types has been shown to generate genetic variation during development and in fully differentiated tissues. Importantly, the ongoing domestication and evolution of TEs appears to provide a rich source of regulatory elements, functional modules and genetic variation that fuels the evolution of mammalian developmental processes. Here, we review the functional impact that TEs exert on mammalian developmental processes and discuss how the somatic activity of TEs can influence gene regulatory networks.

  20. High-Frequency Power Gain in the Mammalian Cochlea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maoiléidigh, Dáibhid Ó.; Hudspeth, A. J.

    2011-11-01

    Amplification in the mammalian inner ear is thought to result from a nonlinear active process known as the cochlear amplifier. Although there is much evidence that outer hair cells (OHCs) play a central role in the cochlear amplifier, the mechanism of amplification remains uncertain. In non-mammalian ears hair bundles can perform mechanical work and account for the active process in vitro, yet in the mammalian cochlea membrane-based electromotility is required for amplification in vivo. A key issue is how OHCs conduct mechanical power amplification at high frequencies. We present a physical model of a segment of the mammalian cochlea that can amplify the power of external signals. In this representation both electromotility and active hair-bundle motility are required for mechanical power gain at high frequencies. We demonstrate how the endocochlear potential, the OHC resting potential, Ca2+ gradients, and ATP-fueled myosin motors serve as the energy sources underlying mechanical power gain in the cochlear amplifier.

  1. Multi-cellular, three-dimensional living mammalian tissue

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Goodwin, Thomas J. (Inventor); Wolf, David A. (Inventor)

    1994-01-01

    The present invention relates to a multicellular, three-dimensional, living mammalian tissue. The tissue is produced by a co-culture process wherein two distinct types of mammalian cells are co-cultured in a rotating bioreactor which is completely filled with culture media and cell attachment substrates. As the size of the tissue assemblies formed on the attachment substrates changes, the rotation of the bioreactor is adjusted accordingly.

  2. Central pattern generators of the mammalian spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Frigon, Alain

    2012-02-01

    Neuronal networks within the spinal cord of mammals are responsible for generating various rhythmic movements, such as walking, running, swimming, and scratching. The ability to generate multiple rhythmic movements highlights the complexity and flexibility of the mammalian spinal circuitry. The present review describes features of some rhythmic motor behaviors generated by the mammalian spinal cord and discusses how the spinal circuitry is able to produce different rhythmic movements with their own sets of goals and demands.

  3. Hypergravity signal transduction and gene expression in cultured mammalian cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kumei, Y.; Whitson, P. A.

    1994-01-01

    A number of studies have been conducted during space flight and with clinostats and centrifuges, suggesting that gravity effects the proliferation and differentiation of mammalian cells in vitro. However, little is known about the mechanisms by which mammalian cells respond to changes in gravitational stress. This paper summarizes studies designed to clarify the effects of hypergravity on the cultured human HeLa cells and to investigate the mechanism of hypergravity signal transduction in these cells.

  4. Evolution of CRISPs associated with toxicoferan-reptilian venom and mammalian reproduction.

    PubMed

    Sunagar, Kartik; Johnson, Warren E; O'Brien, Stephen J; Vasconcelos, Vítor; Antunes, Agostinho

    2012-07-01

    Cysteine-rich secretory proteins (CRISPs) are glycoproteins found exclusively in vertebrates and have broad diversified functions. They are hypothesized to play important roles in mammalian reproduction and in reptilian venom, where they disrupt homeostasis of the prey through several mechanisms, including among others, blockage of cyclic nucleotide-gated and voltage-gated ion channels and inhibition of smooth muscle contraction. We evaluated the molecular evolution of CRISPs in toxicoferan reptiles at both nucleotide and protein levels relative to their nonvenomous mammalian homologs. We show that the evolution of CRISP gene in these reptiles is significantly influenced by positive selection and in snakes (ω = 3.84) more than in lizards (ω = 2.33), whereas mammalian CRISPs were under strong negative selection (CRISP1 = 0.55, CRISP2 = 0.40, and CRISP3 = 0.68). The use of ancestral sequence reconstruction, mapping of mutations on the three-dimensional structure, and detailed evaluation of selection pressures suggests that the toxicoferan CRISPs underwent accelerated evolution aided by strong positive selection and directional mutagenesis, whereas their mammalian homologs are constrained by negative selection. Gene and protein-level selection analyses identified 41 positively selected sites in snakes and 14 sites in lizards. Most of these sites are located on the molecular surface (nearly 76% in snakes and 79% in lizards), whereas the backbone of the protein retains a highly conserved structural scaffold. Nearly 46% of the positively selected sites occur in the cysteine-rich domain of the protein. This directional mutagenesis, where the hotspots of mutations are found on the molecular surface and functional domains of the protein, acts as a diversifying mechanism for the exquisite biological targeting of CRISPs in toxicoferan reptiles. Finally, our analyses suggest that the evolution of toxicoferan-CRISP venoms might have been influenced by the specific predatory

  5. Reconstructing vanished ocean basins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Müller, D.; Sdrolias, M.; Gaina, C.

    2006-05-01

    The large-scale patterns of mantle convection are mainly dependent on the history of subduction. Therefore some of the primary constraints for subduction models are given by of the location of subduction zones through time, and of the convergence vectors and age of subducted lithosphere. This requires the complete reconstruction of ocean floor through time, including the main ocean basins, back-arc basins, and now subducted ocean crust, and tying these kinematic models to geodynamic simulations. We reconstruct paleo- oceans by creating "synthetic plates", the locations and geometry of which is established on the basis of preserved ocean crust (magnetic lineations and fracture zones), geological data, paleogeography, and the rules of plate tectonics. We use a merged moving hotspot (Late Cretaceous-present) and palaeomagnetic/fixed hotspot (Early Cretaceous) reference frame, coupled with reconstructed spreading histories of the Pacific, Phoenix and Farallon plates and the plates involved in the Tethys oceanic domain. Based on this approach we have created a set of global oceanic paleo-isochrons and paleo-oceanic age grids. The grids also provide the first complete global set of paleo-basement depth maps, including now subducted ocean floor, for the last 130 million years based on a depth-age relationship. We show that the mid-Cretaceous sealevel highstand was primarily caused by two main factors: (1) the "supercontinent breakup effect", which resulted in the creation of the mid-Atlantic and Indian Ocean ridges at the expense of subducting old ocean floor in the Tethys and (2) by a changing age-area distribution of Pacific ocean floor through time, resulting from the subduction of the Pacific-Izanagi, Pacific-Phoenix and Pacific-Farallon ridges. These grids provide model constraints for subduction dynamics through time and represent a framework for backtracking biogeographic and sediment data from ocean drilling and for constraining the opening/closing of oceanic

  6. Reconstructing the Universe

    SciTech Connect

    Ambjoern, J.; Jurkiewicz, J.; Loll, R.

    2005-09-15

    We provide detailed evidence for the claim that nonperturbative quantum gravity, defined through state sums of causal triangulated geometries, possesses a large-scale limit in which the dimension of spacetime is four and the dynamics of the volume of the universe behaves semiclassically. This is a first step in reconstructing the universe from a dynamical principle at the Planck scale, and at the same time provides a nontrivial consistency check of the method of causal dynamical triangulations. A closer look at the quantum geometry reveals a number of highly nonclassical aspects, including a dynamical reduction of spacetime to two dimensions on short scales and a fractal structure of slices of constant time.

  7. Penile surgery and reconstruction.

    PubMed

    Perovic, Sava V; Djordjevic, Miroslav L J; Kekic, Zoran K; Djakovic, Nenad G

    2002-05-01

    This review will highlight recent advances in the field of penile reconstructive surgery in the paediatric and adult population. It is based on the work published during the year 2001. Besides the anatomical and histological studies of the penis, major contributions have been described in congenital and acquired penile anomalies. Also, a few new techniques and modifications of old procedures are described in order to improve the final functional and aesthetic outcome. The techniques for penile enlargement present a trend in the new millennium, but are still at the stage of investigation.

  8. Photometric Lunar Surface Reconstruction

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nefian, Ara V.; Alexandrov, Oleg; Morattlo, Zachary; Kim, Taemin; Beyer, Ross A.

    2013-01-01

    Accurate photometric reconstruction of the Lunar surface is important in the context of upcoming NASA robotic missions to the Moon and in giving a more accurate understanding of the Lunar soil composition. This paper describes a novel approach for joint estimation of Lunar albedo, camera exposure time, and photometric parameters that utilizes an accurate Lunar-Lambertian reflectance model and previously derived Lunar topography of the area visualized during the Apollo missions. The method introduced here is used in creating the largest Lunar albedo map (16% of the Lunar surface) at the resolution of 10 meters/pixel.

  9. Reconstructing the Antikythera Mechanism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Freeth, Tony

    The Antikythera Mechanism is a geared astronomical calculating machine from ancient Greece. The extraordinary nature of this device has become even more apparent in recent years as a result of research under the aegis of the Antikythera Mechanism Research Project (AMRP) - an international collaboration of scientists, historians, museum staff, engineers, and imaging specialists. Though many questions still remain, we may now be close to reconstructing the complete machine. As a technological artifact, it is unique in the ancient world. Its brilliant design conception means that it is a landmark in the history of science and technology.

  10. Decoding Synteny Blocks and Large-Scale Duplications in Mammalian and Plant Genomes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peng, Qian; Alekseyev, Max A.; Tesler, Glenn; Pevzner, Pavel A.

    The existing synteny block reconstruction algorithms use anchors (e.g., orthologous genes) shared over all genomes to construct the synteny blocks for multiple genomes. This approach, while efficient for a few genomes, cannot be scaled to address the need to construct synteny blocks in many mammalian genomes that are currently being sequenced. The problem is that the number of anchors shared among all genomes quickly decreases with the increase in the number of genomes. Another problem is that many genomes (plant genomes in particular) had extensive duplications, which makes decoding of genomic architecture and rearrangement analysis in plants difficult. The existing synteny block generation algorithms in plants do not address the issue of generating non-overlapping synteny blocks suitable for analyzing rearrangements and evolution history of duplications. We present a new algorithm based on the A-Bruijn graph framework that overcomes these difficulties and provides a unified approach to synteny block reconstruction for multiple genomes, and for genomes with large duplications.

  11. The mitochondrial genome of Chara vulgaris: insights into the mitochondrial DNA architecture of the last common ancestor of green algae and land plants.

    PubMed

    Turmel, Monique; Otis, Christian; Lemieux, Claude

    2003-08-01

    Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) has undergone radical changes during the evolution of green plants, yet little is known about the dynamics of mtDNA evolution in this phylum. Land plant mtDNAs differ from the few green algal mtDNAs that have been analyzed to date by their expanded size, long spacers, and diversity of introns. We have determined the mtDNA sequence of Chara vulgaris (Charophyceae), a green alga belonging to the charophycean order (Charales) that is thought to be the most closely related alga to land plants. This 67,737-bp mtDNA sequence, displaying 68 conserved genes and 27 introns, was compared with those of three angiosperms, the bryophyte Marchantia polymorpha, the charophycean alga Chaetosphaeridium globosum (Coleochaetales), and the green alga Mesostigma viride. Despite important differences in size and intron composition, Chara mtDNA strikingly resembles Marchantia mtDNA; for instance, all except 9 of 68 conserved genes lie within blocks of colinear sequences. Overall, our genome comparisons and phylogenetic analyses provide unequivocal support for a sister-group relationship between the Charales and the land plants. Only four introns in land plant mtDNAs appear to have been inherited vertically from a charalean algar ancestor. We infer that the common ancestor of green algae and land plants harbored a tightly packed, gene-rich, and relatively intron-poor mitochondrial genome. The group II introns in this ancestral genome appear to have spread to new mtDNA sites during the evolution of bryophytes and charalean green algae, accounting for part of the intron diversity found in Chara and land plant mitochondria.

  12. The crystal structure of avian CD1 reveals a smaller, more primordial antigen-binding pocket compared to mammalian CD1

    PubMed Central

    Zajonc, Dirk M.; Striegl, Harald; Dascher, Christopher C.; Wilson, Ian A.

    2008-01-01

    The molecular details of glycolipid presentation by CD1 antigen-presenting molecules are well studied in mammalian systems. However, little is known about how these non-classical MHC class I (MHCI) molecules diverged from the MHC locus to create a more complex, hydrophobic binding groove that binds lipids rather than peptides. To address this fundamental question, we have determined the crystal structure of an avian CD1 (chCD1–2) that shares common ancestry with mammalian CD1 from ≈310 million years ago. The chCD1–2 antigen-binding site consists of a compact, narrow, central hydrophobic groove or pore rather than the more open, 2-pocket architecture observed in mammalian CD1s. Potential antigens then would be restricted in size to single-chain lipids or glycolipids. An endogenous ligand, possibly palmitic acid, serves to illuminate the mode and mechanism of ligand interaction with chCD1–2. The palmitate alkyl chain is inserted into the relatively shallow hydrophobic pore; its carboxyl group emerges at the receptor surface and is stabilized by electrostatic and hydrogen bond interactions with an arginine residue that is conserved in all known CD1 proteins. In addition, other novel features, such as an A′ loop that interrupts and segments the normally long, continuous α1 helix, are unique to chCD1–2 and contribute to the unusually narrow binding groove, thereby limiting its size. Because birds and mammals share a common ancestor, but the rate of evolution is slower in birds than in mammals, the chCD1–2-binding groove probably represents a more primordial CD1-binding groove. PMID:19004781

  13. Stardust Entry Reconstruction

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Desai, Prasun N.; Qualls, Garry D.

    2008-01-01

    An overview of the reconstruction analyses performed for the Stardust capsule entry is described. The results indicate that the actual entry was very close to the pre-entry predictions. The capsule landed 8.1 km north-northwest of the desired target at Utah Test and Training Range. Analyses of infrared video footage and radar range data (obtained from tracking stations) during the descent show that drogue parachute deployment was 4.8 s later than the pre-entry prediction, while main parachute deployment was 19.3 s earlier than the pre-set timer indicating that main deployment was actually triggered by the backup baroswitch. Reconstruction of a best estimated trajectory revealed that the aerodynamic drag experienced by the capsule during hypersonic flight was within 1% of pre-entry predications. Observations of the heatshield support the pre-entry estimates of small hypersonic angles of attack, since there was very little, if any, charring of the shoulder region or the aftbody. Through this investigation, an overall assertion can be made that all the data gathered from the Stardust capsule entry were consistent with flight performance close to nominal pre-entry predictions. Consequently, the design principles and methodologies utilized for the flight dynamics, aerodynamics, and aerothermodynamics analyses have been corroborated.

  14. Parallel ptychographic reconstruction

    PubMed Central

    Nashed, Youssef S. G.; Vine, David J.; Peterka, Tom; Deng, Junjing; Ross, Rob; Jacobsen, Chris

    2014-01-01

    Ptychography is an imaging method whereby a coherent beam is scanned across an object, and an image is obtained by iterative phasing of the set of diffraction patterns. It is able to be used to image extended objects at a resolution limited by scattering strength of the object and detector geometry, rather than at an optics-imposed limit. As technical advances allow larger fields to be imaged, computational challenges arise for reconstructing the correspondingly larger data volumes, yet at the same time there is also a need to deliver reconstructed images immediately so that one can evaluate the next steps to take in an experiment. Here we present a parallel method for real-time ptychographic phase retrieval. It uses a hybrid parallel strategy to divide the computation between multiple graphics processing units (GPUs) and then employs novel techniques to merge sub-datasets into a single complex phase and amplitude image. Results are shown on a simulated specimen and a real dataset from an X-ray experiment conducted at a synchrotron light source. PMID:25607174

  15. Biomaterials for craniofacial reconstruction

    PubMed Central

    Neumann, Andreas; Kevenhoerster, Kevin

    2011-01-01

    Biomaterials for reconstruction of bony defects of the skull comprise of osteosynthetic materials applied after osteotomies or traumatic fractures and materials to fill bony defects which result from malformation, trauma or tumor resections. Other applications concern functional augmentations for dental implants or aesthetic augmentations in the facial region. For ostheosynthesis, mini- and microplates made from titanium alloys provide major advantages concerning biocompatibility, stability and individual fitting to the implant bed. The necessity of removing asymptomatic plates and screws after fracture healing is still a controversial issue. Risks and costs of secondary surgery for removal face a low rate of complications (due to corrosion products) when the material remains in situ. Resorbable osteosynthesis systems have similar mechanical stability and are especially useful in the growing skull. The huge variety of biomaterials for the reconstruction of bony defects makes it difficult to decide which material is adequate for which indication and for which site. The optimal biomaterial that meets every requirement (e.g. biocompatibility, stability, intraoperative fitting, product safety, low costs etc.) does not exist. The different material types are (autogenic) bone and many alloplastics such as metals (mainly titanium), ceramics, plastics and composites. Future developments aim to improve physical and biological properties, especially regarding surface interactions. To date, tissue engineered bone is far from routine clinical application. PMID:22073101

  16. A phylogenetic foundation for comparative mammalian genomics.

    PubMed

    Waddell, P J; Kishino, H; Ota, R

    2001-01-01

    A major effort is being undertaken to sequence an array of mammalian genomes. Coincidentally, the evolutionary relationships of the 18 presently recognized orders of placental mammals are only just being resolved. In this work we construct and analyse the largest alignments of amino acid sequence data to date. Our findings allow us to set up a series of superordinal groups (clades) to act as prior hypotheses for further testing. Important findings include strong evidence for a clade of Euarchonta+Glires (=Supraprimates) comprised of primates, flying lemurs, tree shrews, lagomorphs and rodents. In addition, there is good evidence for a clade of all placental mammals except Xenarthra and Afrotheria (=Boreotheria) and for the previously recognised clades Laurasiatheria, Scrotifera, Fereuungulata, Ferae, Afrotheria, Euarchonta, Glires, and Eulipotyphla. Accordingly, a revised classification of the placental mammals is put forward. Using this and molecular divergence-time methods, the ages of the superordinal splits are estimated. While results are strongly consistent with the earliest superordinal divergences all being >65 mybp (Cretaceous period), they suffer from greater uncertainty than presently appreciated. The early primate split of tarsiers from the anthropoid lineage at ~55 mybp is seen to be an especially informative fossil calibration point. A statistical framework for testing clades using SINE data is presented and reveals significant support for the tarsier/anthropoid clade, as well as the clades Cetruminantia and Whippomorpha. Results also underline our thesis that while sequence analysis can help set up hypothesised clades, SINEs obtainable from sequencing 1-2 MB regions of placental genomes are essential to testing them. In contrast, derivations suggest that empirical Bayesian methods for sequence data may not be robust estimators of clades. Our findings, including the study of genes such as TP53, make a good case for the tree shrew as a closer relative

  17. Redox reactions of apo mammalian ferritin.

    PubMed

    Watt, R K; Frankel, R B; Watt, G D

    1992-10-13

    Apo horse spleen ferritin undergoes a 6.3 +/- 0.5 electron redox reaction at -310 mV at pH 6.0-8.5 and 25 degrees C to form reduced apoferritin (apoMFred). Reconstituted ferritin containing up to 50 ferric ions undergoes reduction at the same potential, taking up one electron per ferric ion and six additional electrons by the protein. We propose that apo mammalian ferritin (apoMF) contains six redox centers that can be fully oxidized forming oxidized apoferritin (apoMFox) or fully reduced forming apoMFred. ApoMFred can be prepared conveniently by dithionite or methyl viologen reduction. ApoMFred is slowly oxidized by molecular oxygen but more rapidly by Fe(CN)6(3-) to apoMFox. Fe(III)-cytochrome c readily oxidizes apoMFred to apoMFox with a stoichiometry of 6 Fe(III)-cytochrome c per apoMFred, demonstrating a rapid interprotein electron-transfer reaction. Both redox states of apoMF react with added Fe3+ and Fe2+. Addition of eight Fe2+ to apoMFox under anaerobic conditions produced apoMFred and Fe3+, as evidenced by the presence of a strong g = 4.3 EPR signal. Subsequent addition of bipyridyl produced at least six Fe(bipyd)3(2+) per MF, establishing the reversibility of this internal electron-transfer process between the redox centers of apoMF and bound iron. Incubation of apoMFred with the Fe(3+)-ATP complex under anaerobic conditions resulted in the formation and binding of two Fe2+ and four Fe3+ by the protein. The various redox states formed by the binding of Fe2+ and Fe3+ to apoMFox and apoMFred are proposed and discussed. The yellow color of apoMF appears to be an integral characteristic of the apoMF and is possibly associated with its redox activity.

  18. Optimal Protective Hypothermia in Arrested Mammalian Hearts

    PubMed Central

    Villet, Outi M.; Ge, Ming; Sekhar, Laigam N.; Corson, Marshall A.; Tylee, Tracy S.; Fan, Lu-Ping; Yao, Lin; Zhu, Chun; Olson, Aaron K.; Buroker, Norman E.; Xu, Cheng-Su; Anderson, David L.; Soh, Yong-Kian; Wang, Elise; Chen, Shi-Han; Portman, Michael A.

    2015-01-01

    Many therapeutic hypothermia recommendations have been reported, but the information supporting them is sparse, and reveals a need for the data of target therapeutic hypothermia (TTH) from well-controlled experiments. The core temperature ≤35°C is considered as hypothermia, and 29°C is a cooling injury threshold in pig heart in vivo. Thus, an optimal protective hypothermia (OPH) should be in the range 29–35°C. This study was conducted with a pig cardiopulmonary bypass preparation to decrease the core temperature to 29–35°C range at 20 minutes before and 60 minutes during heart arrest. The left ventricular (LV) developed pressure, maximum of the first derivative of LV (dP/dtmax), cardiac power, heart rate, cardiac output, and myocardial velocity (Vmax) were recorded continuously via an LV pressure catheter and an aortic flow probe. At 20 minutes of off-pump during reperfusion after 60 minutes arrest, 17 hypothermic hearts showed that the recovery of Vmax and dP/dtmax established sigmoid curves that consisted of two plateaus: a good recovery plateau at 29–30.5°C, the function recovered to baseline level (BL) (Vmax=118.4%±3.9% of BL, LV dP/dtmax=120.7%±3.1% of BL, n=6); another poor recovery plateau at 34–35°C (Vmax=60.2%±2.8% of BL, LV dP/dtmax=28.0%±5.9% of BL, p<0.05, n=6; ), which are similar to the four normothermia arrest (37°C) hearts (Vmax=55.9%±4.8% of BL, LV dP/dtmax=24.5%±2.1% of BL, n=4). The 32–32.5°C arrest hearts showed moderate recovery (n=5). A point of inflection (around 30.5–31°C) existed at the edge of a good recovery plateau followed by a steep slope. The point presented an OPH that should be the TTH. The results are concordant with data in the mammalian hearts, suggesting that the TTH should be initiated to cool core temperature at 31°C. PMID:25514569

  19. Unfavourable results in thumb reconstruction

    PubMed Central

    Kumta, Samir M.

    2013-01-01

    The history of thumb reconstruction parallels the history of hand surgery. The attributes that make the thumb unique, and that the reconstructive surgeon must assess and try to restore when reconstructing a thumb, are: Position, stability, strength, length, motion, sensibility and appearance. Deficiency in any of these attributes can reduce the utility of the reconstructed thumb. A detailed assessment of the patient and his requirements needs to be performed before embarking on a thumb reconstruction. Most unsatisfactory results can be attributed to wrong choice of procedure. Component defects of the thumb are commonly treated by tissue from adjacent fingers, hand or forearm. With refinements in microsurgery, the foot has become a major source of tissue for component replacement in the thumb. Bone lengthening, osteoplastic reconstruction, pollicisation, and toe to hand transfers are the commonest methods of thumb reconstruction. Unfavourable results can be classified as functional and aesthetic. Some are common to all types of procedures. However each type of reconstruction has its own unique set of problems. Meticulous planning and execution is essential to give an aesthetic and functionally useful thumb. Secondary surgeries like tendon transfers, bone grafting, debulking, arthrodesis, may be required to correct deficiencies in the reconstruction. Attention needs to be paid to the donor site as well. PMID:24501466

  20. Exercises in PET Image Reconstruction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nix, Oliver

    These exercises are complementary to the theoretical lectures about positron emission tomography (PET) image reconstruction. They aim at providing some hands on experience in PET image reconstruction and focus on demonstrating the different data preprocessing steps and reconstruction algorithms needed to obtain high quality PET images. Normalisation, geometric-, attenuation- and scatter correction are introduced. To explain the necessity of those some basics about PET scanner hardware, data acquisition and organisation are reviewed. During the course the students use a software application based on the STIR (software for tomographic image reconstruction) library 1,2 which allows them to dynamically select or deselect corrections and reconstruction methods as well as to modify their most important parameters. Following the guided tutorial, the students get an impression on the effect the individual data precorrections have on image quality and what happens if they are forgotten. Several data sets in sinogram format are provided, such as line source data, Jaszczak phantom data sets with high and low statistics and NEMA whole body phantom data. The two most frequently used reconstruction algorithms in PET image reconstruction, filtered back projection (FBP) and the iterative OSEM (ordered subset expectation maximation) approach are used to reconstruct images. The exercise should help the students gaining an understanding what the reasons for inferior image quality and artefacts are and how to improve quality by a clever choice of reconstruction parameters.