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Sample records for neuronal gene transfer

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-09-14

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

  2. Herpes simplex virus-mediated human hypoxanthine-guanine phosphoribosyltransferase gene transfer into neuronal cells

    SciTech Connect

    Palella, T.D.; Silverman, L.J.; Schroll, C.T.; Homa, F.L.; Levine, M.; Kelley, W.N.

    1988-01-01

    The virtually complete deficiency of the purine salvage enzyme hypoxanthine-guanine phosphoribosyltransferase (HPRT) results in a devastating neurological disease, Lesch-Nyhan syndrome. Transfer of the HPRT gene into fibroblasts and lymphoblasts in vitro and into hematopoietic cells in vivo has been accomplished by other groups with retroviral-derived vectors. It appears to be necessary, however, to transfer the HPRT gene into neuronal cells to correct the neurological dysfunction of this disorder. The neurotropic virus herpes simplex virus type 1 has features that make it suitable for use as a vector to transfer the HPRT gene into neuronal tissue. This report describes the isolation of an HPRT-deficient rat neuroma cell line, designated B103-4C, and the construction of a recombinant herpes simplex virus type 1 that contained human HPRT cDNA. These recombinant viruses were used to infect B103-4C cells. Infected cells expressed HPRT activity which was human in origin.

  3. Replication-deficient adenovirus vector transfer of gfp reporter gene into supraoptic nucleus and subfornical organ neurons

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vasquez, E. C.; Johnson, R. F.; Beltz, T. G.; Haskell, R. E.; Davidson, B. L.; Johnson, A. K.

    1998-01-01

    The present studies used defined cells of the subfornical organ (SFO) and supraoptic nuclei (SON) as model systems to demonstrate the efficacy of replication-deficient adenovirus (Ad) encoding green fluorescent protein (GFP) for gene transfer. The studies investigated the effects of both direct transfection of the SON and indirect transfection (i.e., via retrograde transport) of SFO neurons. The SON of rats were injected with Ad (2 x 10(6) pfu) and sacrificed 1-7 days later for cell culture of the SON and of the SFO. In the SON, GFP fluorescence was visualized in both neuronal and nonneuronal cells while only neurons in the SFO expressed GFP. Successful in vitro transfection of cultured cells from the SON and SFO was also achieved with Ad (2 x 10(6) to 2 x 10(8) pfu). The expression of GFP in in vitro transfected cells was higher in nonneuronal (approximately 28% in SON and SFO) than neuronal (approximately 4% in SON and 10% in SFO) cells. The expression of GFP was time and viral concentration related. No apparent alterations in cellular morphology of transfected cells were detected and electrophysiological characterization of transfected cells was similar between GFP-expressing and nonexpressing neurons. We conclude that (1) GFP is an effective marker for gene transfer in living SON and SFO cells, (2) Ad infects both neuronal and nonneuronal cells, (3) Ad is taken up by axonal projections from the SON and retrogradely transported to the SFO where it is expressed at detectable levels, and (4) Ad does not adversely affect neuronal viability. These results demonstrate the feasibility of using adenoviral vectors to deliver genes to the SFO-SON axis. Copyright 1998 Academic Press.

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

    PubMed Central

    Hernandez-Baltazar, Daniel

    2012-01-01

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

  5. In vivo gene transfer to dopamine neurons of rat substantia nigra via the high-affinity neurotensin receptor.

    PubMed Central

    Alvarez-Maya, I.; Navarro-Quiroga, I.; Meraz-Ríos, M. A.; Aceves, J.; Martinez-Fong, D.

    2001-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Recently, we synthesized a nonviral gene vector capable of transfecting cell lines taking advantage of neurotensin (NT) internalization. The vector is NT cross-linked with poly-L-lysine, to which a plasmid DNA was bound to form a complex (NT-polyplex). Nigral dopamine neurons are able to internalize NT, thus representing a target for gene transfer via NT-polyplex. This hypothesis was tested here using reporter genes encoding green fluorescent protein or chloramphenicol acetyl transferase. MATERIALS AND METHODS: NT-polyplex was injected into the substantia nigra. Double immunofluorescence labeling was used to reveal the cell type involved in the propidium iodide-labeled polyplex internalization and reporter gene expression. RESULTS: Polyplex internalization was observed within dopamine neurons but not within glial cells, and was prevented by both hypertonic sucrose solution and SR-48692, a selective nonpeptide antagonist of NT receptors. Reporter gene expression was observed in dopamine neurons from 48 hr up to 15 days after NT-polyplex injection, and was prevented by SR-48692. However, no expression was seen when the NT-polyplex was injected into the ansiform lobule of the cerebellum, which contains low- but not high-affinity NT receptors. Neither internalization nor expression was observed in cultured glial cells, despite the NT-polyplex binding to those cells that was prevented by levocabastine, a low-affinity NT receptor antagonist. CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest that high-affinity NT receptors mediate the uptake of NT-polyplex with the subsequent reporter gene expression in vivo. NT polyfection may be used to transfer genes of physiologic interest to nigrostriatal dopamine neurons, and to produce transgenic animal models of dopamine-related diseases. PMID:11471555

  6. Efficient neuronal gene transfer with AAV8 leads to neurotoxic levels of tau or green fluorescent proteins.

    PubMed

    Klein, Ronald L; Dayton, Robert D; Leidenheimer, Nancy J; Jansen, Karen; Golde, Todd E; Zweig, Richard M

    2006-03-01

    Adeno-associated virus (AAV) serotype 8 appears to be the strongest of the natural serotypes reported to date for gene transfer in liver and muscle. In this study, we evaluated AAV8 in the brain by several methods, including biophotonic imaging of green fluorescent protein (GFP). In the adult rat hippocampus, levels of GFP expressed were clearly greater with AAV8 than with AAV2 or AAV5 by Western blot and biophotonic imaging and slightly but significantly greater than AAV1 by Western blot. In the substantia nigra, the GFP expression conferred by AAV8 was toxic to dopamine neurons, although toxicity could be avoided with dose titration. At the low dose at which there was no GFP toxicity from the GFP vector, another AAV8 vector for a disease-related (P301L) form of the microtubule-associated protein tau caused a 78% loss of dopamine neurons and significant amphetamine-stimulated rotational behavior. The AAV8 tau vector-induced cell loss was greater than that from AAV2 or AAV5 tau vectors, demonstrating that the increased gene transfer was functional. While the toxicity observed with GFP expression warrants great caution, the efficient AAV8 is promising for animal models of neurodegenerative diseases and potentially as well for gene therapy of brain diseases.

  7. Antibody-mediated targeted gene transfer of helper virus-free HSV-1 vectors to rat neocortical neurons that contain either NMDA receptor 2B or 2A subunits.

    PubMed

    Cao, Haiyan; Zhang, Guo-rong; Geller, Alfred I

    2011-09-30

    Because of the numerous types of neurons in the brain, and particularly the forebrain, neuron type-specific expression will benefit many potential applications of direct gene transfer. The two most promising approaches for achieving neuron type-specific expression are targeted gene transfer to a specific type of neuron and using a neuron type-specific promoter. We previously developed antibody-mediated targeted gene transfer with Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV-1) vectors by modifying glycoprotein C (gC) to replace the heparin binding domain, which mediates the initial binding of HSV-1 particles to many cell types, with the Staphylococcus A protein ZZ domain, which binds immunoglobulin (Ig) G. We showed that a chimeric gC-ZZ protein is incorporated into vector particles and binds IgG. As a proof-of-principle for antibody-mediated targeted gene transfer, we isolated complexes of these vector particles and an anti-NMDA NR1 subunit antibody, and demonstrated targeted gene transfer to neocortical cells that contain NR1 subunits. However, because most forebrain neurons contain NR1, we obtained only a modest increase in the specificity of gene transfer, and this targeting specificity is of limited utility for physiological experiments. Here, we report efficient antibody-mediated targeted gene transfer to NMDA NR2B- or NR2A-containing cells in rat postrhinal cortex, and a neuron-specific promoter further restricted recombinant expression to neurons. Of note, because NR2A-containing neurons are relatively rare, these results show that antibody-mediated targeted gene transfer with HSV-1 vectors containing neuron type-specific promoters can restrict recombinant expression to specific types of forebrain neurons of physiological significance.

  8. Plasmid-mediated gene transfer in neurons using the biolistics technique.

    PubMed

    Biewenga, J E; Destrée, O H; Schrama, L H

    1997-01-01

    Biolistics has been developed as a system for gene delivery into plant cells, but has recently been introduced for transfection into mammalian tissue, including few attempts in neural cells. Basically, in this system the plasmid DNA of interest is coated onto small particles, that are accelerated by a particular driving force. The combination of several so-called 'ballistic' parameters and tissue parameters determine the transfection efficiency. The main advantage of the system is that it is, unlike other available transfection methods, a mechanical way to cross the plasma membrane and therefore less dependent on target cell characteristics. In terms of transfection efficiency, biolistics seems favorable above conventional techniques, like calcium phosphate precipitation and lipofection. Compared to viral techniques biolistics may be less efficient, but is quicker and easier to handle and seems to produce fewer complications for in vivo gene delivery. Therefore, although the technique is only in a developmental stage, preliminary results seem promising, and optimalization of the method may prove useful in scientific research and/or clinical use.

  9. rAAV8-733-Mediated Gene Transfer of CHIP/Stub-1 Prevents Hippocampal Neuronal Death in Experimental Brain Ischemia.

    PubMed

    Cabral-Miranda, Felipe; Nicoloso-Simões, Elisa; Adão-Novaes, Juliana; Chiodo, Vince; Hauswirth, William W; Linden, Rafael; Chiarini, Luciana Barreto; Petrs-Silva, Hilda

    2017-02-01

    Brain ischemia is a major cause of adult disability and death, and it represents a worldwide health problem with significant economic burden for modern society. The identification of the molecular pathways activated after brain ischemia, together with efficient technologies of gene delivery to the CNS, may lead to novel treatments based on gene therapy. Recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV) is an effective platform for gene transfer to the CNS. Here, we used a serotype 8 rAAV bearing the Y733F mutation (rAAV8-733) to overexpress co-chaperone E3 ligase CHIP (also known as Stub-1) in rat hippocampal neurons, both in an oxygen and glucose deprivation model in vitro and in a four-vessel occlusion model of ischemia in vivo. We show that CHIP overexpression prevented neuronal degeneration in both cases and led to a decrease of both eIF2α (serine 51) and AKT (serine 473) phosphorylation, as well as reduced amounts of ubiquitinated proteins following hypoxia or ischemia. These data add to current knowledge of ischemia-related signaling in the brain and suggest that gene therapy based on the role of CHIP in proteostasis may provide a new venue for brain ischemia treatment.

  10. Antibody-mediated targeted gene transfer to NMDA NR1-containing neurons in rat neocortex by helper virus-free HSV-1 vector particles containing a chimeric HSV-1 glycoprotein C-staphylococcus A protein.

    PubMed

    Cao, Haiyan; Zhang, Guo-Rong; Geller, Alfred I

    2010-09-10

    Because of the heterogeneous cellular composition of the brain, and especially the forebrain, cell type-specific expression will benefit many potential applications of direct gene transfer. The two prevalent approaches for achieving cell type-specific expression are using a cell type-specific promoter or targeting gene transfer to a specific cell type. Targeted gene transfer with Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV-1) vectors modifies glycoprotein C (gC) to replace the heparin binding domain, which binds to many cell types, with a binding activity for a specific cell surface protein. We previously reported targeted gene transfer to nigrostriatal neurons using chimeric gC-glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor or gC-brain-derived neurotrophic factor protein. Unfortunately, this approach is limited to cells that express the cognate receptor for either neurotrophic factor. Thus, a general strategy for targeting gene transfer to many different types of neurons is desirable. Antibody-mediated targeted gene transfer has been developed for targeting specific virus vectors to specific peripheral cell types; a specific vector particle protein is modified to contain the Staphylococcus A protein ZZ domain, which binds immunoglobulin (Ig) G. Here, we report antibody-mediated targeted gene transfer of HSV-1 vectors to a specific type of forebrain neuron. We constructed a chimeric gC-ZZ protein, and showed this protein is incorporated into vector particles and binds Ig G. Complexes of these vector particles and an antibody to the NMDA receptor NR1 subunit supported targeted gene transfer to NR1-containing neocortical neurons in the rat brain, with long-term (2 months) expression.

  11. [Neuronal plasticity and gene expression].

    PubMed

    Sokolova, O O; Shtark, M B; Lisachev, P D

    2010-01-01

    Neuronal plasticity--a fundamental feature of brain--provides adequate interactions with dynamic environment. One of the most deeply investigated forms of the neuronal plasticity is a long-term potentiation (LTP)--a phenomenon underlying learning and memory. Signal paths activated during LTP converge into the nuclear of the neuron, giving rise to launch of the molecular-genetic programs, which mediate structural and functional remodeling of synapses. In the review data concerning involvement of multilevel gene expression into plastic change under neuronal activation are summarized.

  12. Inferring Horizontal Gene Transfer

    PubMed Central

    Lassalle, Florent; Dessimoz, Christophe

    2015-01-01

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

  13. Lateral gene transfer, rearrangement, reconciliation

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

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

  14. PPARγ-coactivator-1α gene transfer reduces neuronal loss and amyloid-β generation by reducing β-secretase in an Alzheimer’s disease model

    PubMed Central

    Lim, Yau M.; Blondrath, Katrin; Eleftheriadou, Ioanna; Lombardero, Laura; Birch, Amy M.; Mirzaei, Nazanin; Irvine, Elaine E.; Mazarakis, Nicholas D.; Sastre, Magdalena

    2016-01-01

    Current therapies for Alzheimer’s disease (AD) are symptomatic and do not target the underlying Aβ pathology and other important hallmarks including neuronal loss. PPARγ-coactivator-1α (PGC-1α) is a cofactor for transcription factors including the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-γ (PPARγ), and it is involved in the regulation of metabolic genes, oxidative phosphorylation, and mitochondrial biogenesis. We previously reported that PGC-1α also regulates the transcription of β-APP cleaving enzyme (BACE1), the main enzyme involved in Aβ generation, and its expression is decreased in AD patients. We aimed to explore the potential therapeutic effect of PGC-1α by generating a lentiviral vector to express human PGC-1α and target it by stereotaxic delivery to hippocampus and cortex of APP23 transgenic mice at the preclinical stage of the disease. Four months after injection, APP23 mice treated with hPGC-1α showed improved spatial and recognition memory concomitant with a significant reduction in Aβ deposition, associated with a decrease in BACE1 expression. hPGC-1α overexpression attenuated the levels of proinflammatory cytokines and microglial activation. This effect was accompanied by a marked preservation of pyramidal neurons in the CA3 area and increased expression of neurotrophic factors. The neuroprotective effects were secondary to a reduction in Aβ pathology and neuroinflammation, because wild-type mice receiving the same treatment were unaffected. These results suggest that the selective induction of PGC-1α gene in specific areas of the brain is effective in targeting AD-related neurodegeneration and holds potential as therapeutic intervention for this disease. PMID:27791018

  15. PPARγ-coactivator-1α gene transfer reduces neuronal loss and amyloid-β generation by reducing β-secretase in an Alzheimer's disease model.

    PubMed

    Katsouri, Loukia; Lim, Yau M; Blondrath, Katrin; Eleftheriadou, Ioanna; Lombardero, Laura; Birch, Amy M; Mirzaei, Nazanin; Irvine, Elaine E; Mazarakis, Nicholas D; Sastre, Magdalena

    2016-10-25

    Current therapies for Alzheimer's disease (AD) are symptomatic and do not target the underlying Aβ pathology and other important hallmarks including neuronal loss. PPARγ-coactivator-1α (PGC-1α) is a cofactor for transcription factors including the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-γ (PPARγ), and it is involved in the regulation of metabolic genes, oxidative phosphorylation, and mitochondrial biogenesis. We previously reported that PGC-1α also regulates the transcription of β-APP cleaving enzyme (BACE1), the main enzyme involved in Aβ generation, and its expression is decreased in AD patients. We aimed to explore the potential therapeutic effect of PGC-1α by generating a lentiviral vector to express human PGC-1α and target it by stereotaxic delivery to hippocampus and cortex of APP23 transgenic mice at the preclinical stage of the disease. Four months after injection, APP23 mice treated with hPGC-1α showed improved spatial and recognition memory concomitant with a significant reduction in Aβ deposition, associated with a decrease in BACE1 expression. hPGC-1α overexpression attenuated the levels of proinflammatory cytokines and microglial activation. This effect was accompanied by a marked preservation of pyramidal neurons in the CA3 area and increased expression of neurotrophic factors. The neuroprotective effects were secondary to a reduction in Aβ pathology and neuroinflammation, because wild-type mice receiving the same treatment were unaffected. These results suggest that the selective induction of PGC-1α gene in specific areas of the brain is effective in targeting AD-related neurodegeneration and holds potential as therapeutic intervention for this disease.

  16. Gene regulatory logic of dopaminergic neuron differentiation

    PubMed Central

    Flames, Nuria; Hobert, Oliver

    2009-01-01

    Dopamine signaling regulates a variety of complex behaviors and defects in dopaminergic neuron function or survival result in severe human pathologies, such as Parkinson's disease 1. The common denominator of all dopaminergic neurons is the expression of dopamine pathway genes, which code for a set of phylogenetically conserved proteins involved in dopamine synthesis and transport. Gene regulatory mechanisms that result in the activation of dopamine pathway genes and thereby ultimately determine the identity of dopaminergic neurons are poorly understood in any system studied to date 2. We show here that a simple cis-regulatory element, the DA motif, controls the expression of all dopamine pathway genes in all dopaminergic cell types in C. elegans. The DA motif is activated by the ETS transcription factor, AST-1. Loss of ast-1 results in the failure of all distinct dopaminergic neuronal subtypes to terminally differentiate. Ectopic expression of ast-1 is sufficient to activate the dopamine production pathway in some cellular contexts. Vertebrate dopaminergic pathway genes also contain phylogenetically conserved DA motifs that can be activated by the mouse ETS transcription factor Etv1/ER81 and a specific class of dopaminergic neurons fails to differentiate in mice lacking Etv1/ER81. Moreover, ectopic Etv1/ER81 expression induces dopaminergic fate marker expression in neuronal primary cultures. Mouse Etv1/ER81 can also functionally substitute for ast-1 in C.elegans. Our studies reveal an astoundingly simple and apparently conserved regulatory logic of dopaminergic neuron terminal differentiation and may provide new entry points into the diagnosis or therapy of conditions in which dopamine neurons are defective. PMID:19287374

  17. Panspermia and horizontal gene transfer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klyce, Brig

    2009-08-01

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

  18. Rich club neurons dominate Information Transfer in local cortical networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nigam, Sunny; Shimono, Masanori; Sporns, Olaf; Beggs, John

    2015-03-01

    The performance of complex networks depends on how they route their traffic. It is unknown how information is transferred in local cortical networks of hundreds of closely-spaced neurons. To address this, it is necessary to record simultaneously from hundreds of neurons at a spacing that matches typical axonal connection distances, and at a temporal resolution that matches synaptic delays. We used a 512 electrode array (60 μm spacing) to record spontaneous activity at 20 kHz, simultaneously from up to 700 neurons in slice cultures of mouse somatosensory cortex for 1 hr at a time. We used transfer entropy to quantify directed information transfer (IT) between pairs of neurons. We found an approximately lognormal distribution of firing rates as reported in in-vivo. Pairwise information transfer strengths also were nearly lognormally distributed, similar to synaptic strengths. 20% of the neurons accounted for 70% of the total IT coming into, and going out of the network and were defined as rich nodes. These rich nodes were more densely and strongly connected to each other expected by chance, forming a rich club. This highly uneven distribution of IT has implications for the efficiency and robustness of local cortical networks, and gives clues to the plastic processes that shape them. JSPS.

  19. Signal transfer within a cultured asymmetric cortical neuron circuit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Isomura, Takuya; Shimba, Kenta; Takayama, Yuzo; Takeuchi, Akimasa; Kotani, Kiyoshi; Jimbo, Yasuhiko

    2015-12-01

    Objective. Simplified neuronal circuits are required for investigating information representation in nervous systems and for validating theoretical neural network models. Here, we developed patterned neuronal circuits using micro fabricated devices, comprising a micro-well array bonded to a microelectrode-array substrate. Approach. The micro-well array consisted of micrometre-scale wells connected by tunnels, all contained within a silicone slab called a micro-chamber. The design of the micro-chamber confined somata to the wells and allowed axons to grow through the tunnels bidirectionally but with a designed, unidirectional bias. We guided axons into the point of the arrow structure where one of the two tunnel entrances is located, making that the preferred direction. Main results. When rat cortical neurons were cultured in the wells, their axons grew through the tunnels and connected to neurons in adjoining wells. Unidirectional burst transfers and other asymmetric signal-propagation phenomena were observed via the substrate-embedded electrodes. Seventy-nine percent of burst transfers were in the forward direction. We also observed rapid propagation of activity from sites of local electrical stimulation, and significant effects of inhibitory synapse blockade on bursting activity. Significance. These results suggest that this simple, substrate-controlled neuronal circuit can be applied to develop in vitro models of the function of cortical microcircuits or deep neural networks, better to elucidate the laws governing the dynamics of neuronal networks.

  20. Transfer of mitochondria from astrocytes to neurons after stroke.

    PubMed

    Hayakawa, Kazuhide; Esposito, Elga; Wang, Xiaohua; Terasaki, Yasukazu; Liu, Yi; Xing, Changhong; Ji, Xunming; Lo, Eng H

    2016-07-28

    Neurons can release damaged mitochondria and transfer them to astrocytes for disposal and recycling. This ability to exchange mitochondria may represent a potential mode of cell-to-cell signalling in the central nervous system. Here we show that astrocytes in mice can also release functional mitochondria that enter neurons. Astrocytic release of extracellular mitochondrial particles was mediated by a calcium-dependent mechanism involving CD38 and cyclic ADP ribose signalling. Transient focal cerebral ischaemia in mice induced entry of astrocytic mitochondria into adjacent neurons, and this entry amplified cell survival signals. Suppression of CD38 signalling by short interfering RNA reduced extracellular mitochondria transfer and worsened neurological outcomes. These findings suggest a new mitochondrial mechanism of neuroglial crosstalk that may contribute to endogenous neuroprotective and neurorecovery mechanisms after stroke.

  1. Transfer of mitochondria from astrocytes to neurons after stroke

    PubMed Central

    Hayakawa, Kazuhide; Esposito, Elga; Wang, Xiaohua; Terasaki, Yasukazu; Liu, Yi; Xing, Changhong; Ji, Xunming; Lo, Eng H.

    2016-01-01

    Recently, it was suggested that neurons can release and transfer damaged mitochondria to astrocytes for disposal and recycling 1. This ability to exchange mitochondria may represent a potential mode of cell-cell signaling in the central nervous system (CNS). Here, we show that astrocytes can also release functional mitochondria that enter into neurons. Astrocytic release of extracellular mitochondria particles was mediated by a calcium-dependent mechanism involving CD38/cyclic ADP ribose signaling. Transient focal cerebral ischemia in mice induced astrocytic mitochondria entry to adjacent neurons that amplified cell survival signals. Suppression of CD38 signaling with siRNA reduced extracellular mitochondria transfer and worsened neurological outcomes. These findings suggest a new mitochondrial mechanism of neuroglial crosstalk that may contribute to endogenous neuroprotective and neurorecovery mechanisms after stroke. PMID:27466127

  2. Antioxidant gene therapy against neuronal cell death

    PubMed Central

    Navarro-Yepes, Juliana; Zavala-Flores, Laura; Annadurai, Anandhan; Wang, Fang; Skotak, Maciej; Chandra, Namas; Li, Ming; Pappa, Aglaia; Martinez-Fong, Daniel; Razo, Luz Maria Del; Quintanilla-Vega, Betzabet; Franco, Rodrigo

    2014-01-01

    Oxidative stress is a common hallmark of neuronal cell death associated with neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, as well as brain stroke/ischemia and traumatic brain injury. Increased accumulation of reactive species of both oxygen (ROS) and nitrogen (RNS) has been implicated in mitochondrial dysfunction, energy impairment, alterations in metal homeostasis and accumulation of aggregated proteins observed in neurodegenerative disorders, which lead to the activation/modulation of cell death mechanisms that include apoptotic, necrotic and autophagic pathways. Thus, the design of novel antioxidant strategies to selectively target oxidative stress and redox imbalance might represent important therapeutic approaches against neurological disorders. This work reviews the evidence demonstrating the ability of genetically encoded antioxidant systems to selectively counteract neuronal cell loss in neurodegenerative diseases and ischemic brain damage. Because gene therapy approaches to treat inherited and acquired disorders offer many unique advantages over conventional therapeutic approaches, we discussed basic research/clinical evidence and the potential of virus-mediated gene delivery techniques for antioxidant gene therapy. PMID:24333264

  3. The molecular and gene regulatory signature of a neuron

    PubMed Central

    Hobert, Oliver; Carrera, Inés; Stefanakis, Nikolaos

    2010-01-01

    Neuron-type specific gene batteries define the morphological and functional diversity of cell types in the nervous system. Here, we discuss the composition of neuron-type specific gene batteries and illustrate gene regulatory strategies employed by distinct organisms from C.elegans to higher vertebrates, which are instrumental in determining the unique gene expression profile and molecular composition of individual neuronal cell types. Based on principles learned from prokaryotic gene regulation, we argue that neuronal, terminal gene batteries are functionally grouped into parallel acting “regulons”. The theoretical concepts discussed here provide testable hypotheses for future experimental analysis into the exact gene regulatory mechanisms that are employed in the generation of neuronal diversity and identity. PMID:20663572

  4. Targeting Radiotherapy to Cancer by Gene Transfer

    PubMed Central

    2003-01-01

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

  5. Lateral Gene Transfer from the Dead

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

  6. Biased gene transfer in microbial evolution.

    PubMed

    Andam, Cheryl P; Gogarten, J Peter

    2011-06-13

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

  7. Detecting Highways of Horizontal Gene Transfer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

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

  8. Detecting highways of horizontal gene transfer.

    PubMed

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

    2011-09-01

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

  9. Gene Transfers Between Distantly Related Organisms

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Doolittle, Russell F.

    2003-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Nakajima, Toshihiro

    2012-01-01

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

  11. Antibody Gene Transfer for HIV Immunoprophylaxis

    PubMed Central

    Balazs, Alejandro B.; West, Anthony P.

    2015-01-01

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

  12. Antibody gene transfer for HIV immunoprophylaxis.

    PubMed

    Balazs, Alejandro B; West, Anthony P

    2013-01-01

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

  13. Genes and brain malformations associated with abnormal neuron positioning.

    PubMed

    Moffat, Jeffrey J; Ka, Minhan; Jung, Eui-Man; Kim, Woo-Yang

    2015-11-05

    Neuronal positioning is a fundamental process during brain development. Abnormalities in this process cause several types of brain malformations and are linked to neurodevelopmental disorders such as autism, intellectual disability, epilepsy, and schizophrenia. Little is known about the pathogenesis of developmental brain malformations associated with abnormal neuron positioning, which has hindered research into potential treatments. However, recent advances in neurogenetics provide clues to the pathogenesis of aberrant neuronal positioning by identifying causative genes. This may help us form a foundation upon which therapeutic tools can be developed. In this review, we first provide a brief overview of neural development and migration, as they relate to defects in neuronal positioning. We then discuss recent progress in identifying genes and brain malformations associated with aberrant neuronal positioning during human brain development.

  14. Cochlear implants and ex vivo BDNF gene therapy protect spiral ganglion neurons.

    PubMed

    Rejali, Darius; Lee, Valerie A; Abrashkin, Karen A; Humayun, Nousheen; Swiderski, Donald L; Raphael, Yehoash

    2007-06-01

    Spiral ganglion neurons often degenerate in the deaf ear, compromising the function of cochlear implants. Cochlear implant function can be improved by good preservation of the spiral ganglion neurons, which are the target of electrical stimulation by the implant. Brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) has previously been shown to enhance spiral ganglion survival in experimentally deafened ears. Providing enhanced levels of BDNF in human ears may be accomplished by one of several different methods. The goal of these experiments was to test a modified design of the cochlear implant electrode that includes a coating of fibroblast cells transduced by a viral vector with a BDNF gene insert. To accomplish this type of ex vivo gene transfer, we transduced guinea pig fibroblasts with an adenovirus with a BDNF gene cassette insert, and determined that these cells secreted BDNF. We then attached BDNF-secreting cells to the cochlear implant electrode via an agarose gel, and implanted the electrode in the scala tympani. We determined that the BDNF expressing electrodes were able to preserve significantly more spiral ganglion neurons in the basal turns of the cochlea after 48 days of implantation when compared to control electrodes. This protective effect decreased in the higher cochlear turns. The data demonstrate the feasibility of combining cochlear implant therapy with ex vivo gene transfer for enhancing spiral ganglion neuron survival.

  15. Gene transfer mediated by alpha2-macroglobulin.

    PubMed Central

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

    1996-01-01

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

  16. Molecular Transfer of Nematode Resistance Genes

    PubMed Central

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

    1992-01-01

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

  17. Viral Vectors for in Vivo Gene Transfer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  19. RANGE: Gene Transfer of Reversibly Controlled Polycistronic Genes

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

  20. Unsupervised Learning in Detection of Gene Transfer

    PubMed Central

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

    2008-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Heilbronn, Regine; Weger, Stefan

    2010-01-01

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

  2. Lateral gene transfer in the subsurface

    SciTech Connect

    Barkay, Tamar; Sobecky, Patricia

    2007-08-27

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

  3. Clinical Applications Involving CNS Gene Transfer

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  4. Perinatal Gene Transfer to the Liver

    PubMed Central

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

    2011-01-01

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

  5. Aging elevates metabolic gene expression in brain cholinergic neurons.

    PubMed

    Baskerville, Karen A; Kent, Caroline; Personett, David; Lai, Weil R; Park, Peter J; Coleman, Paul; McKinney, Michael

    2008-12-01

    The basal forebrain (BF) cholinergic system is selectively vulnerable in human brain diseases, while the cholinergic groups in the upper pons of the brainstem (BS) resist neurodegeneration. Cholinergic neurons (200 per region per animal) were laser-microdissected from five young (8 months) and five aged (24 months) F344 rats from the BF and the BS pontine lateral dorsal tegmental/pedunculopontine nuclei (LDTN/PPN) and their expression profiles were obtained. The bioinformatics program SigPathway was used to identify gene groups and pathways that were selectively affected by aging. In the BF cholinergic system, aging most significantly altered genes involved with a variety of metabolic functions. In contrast, BS cholinergic neuronal age effects included gene groupings related to neuronal plasticity and a broad range of normal cellular functions. Transcription factor GA-binding protein alpha (GABPalpha), which controls expression of nuclear genes encoding mitochondrial proteins, was more strongly upregulated in the BF cholinergic neurons (+107%) than in the BS cholinergic population (+40%). The results suggest that aging elicits elevates metabolic activity in cholinergic populations and that this occurs to a much greater degree in the BF group than in the BS group.

  6. Enhanced adenoviral gene delivery to motor and dorsal root ganglion neurons following injection into demyelinated peripheral nerves.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yongjie; Zheng, Yiyan; Zhang, Yi Ping; Shields, Lisa B E; Hu, Xiaoling; Yu, Panpan; Burke, Darlene A; Wang, Heming; Jun, Cai; Byers, Jonathan; Whittemore, Scott R; Shields, Christopher B

    2010-08-15

    Injection of viral vectors into peripheral nerves may transfer specific genes into their dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons and motoneurons. However, myelin sheaths of peripheral axons block the entry of viral particles into nerves. We studied whether mild, transient peripheral nerve demyelination prior to intraneural viral vector injection would enhance gene transfer to target DRG neurons and motoneurons. The right sciatic nerve of C57BL/6 mice was focally demyelinated with 1% lysolecithin, and the left sciatic nerve was similarly injected with saline (control). Five days after demyelination, 0.5 microl of Ad5-GFP was injected into both sciatic nerves at the site of previous injection. The effectiveness of gene transfer was evaluated by counting GFP(+) neurons in the DRGs and ventral horns. After peripheral nerve demyelination, there was a fivefold increase in the number of infected DRG neurons and almost a 15-fold increase in the number of infected motoneurons compared with the control, nondemyelinated side. Focal demyelination reduced the myelin sheath barrier, allowing greater virus-axon contact. Increased CXADR expression on the demyelinated axons facilitated axoplasmic viral entry. No animals sustained any prolonged neurological deficits. Increased gene delivery into DRG neurons and motoneurons may provide effective treatment for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, pain, and spinal cord injury.

  7. Horizontal Gene Transfer, Dispersal and Haloarchaeal Speciation

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  8. Inducible Gene Manipulations in Brain Serotonergic Neurons of Transgenic Rats

    PubMed Central

    Tews, Björn; Bartsch, Dusan

    2011-01-01

    The serotonergic (5-HT) system has been implicated in various physiological processes and neuropsychiatric disorders, but in many aspects its role in normal and pathologic brain function is still unclear. One reason for this might be the lack of appropriate animal models which can address the complexity of physiological and pathophysiological 5-HT functioning. In this respect, rats offer many advantages over mice as they have been the animal of choice for sophisticated neurophysiological and behavioral studies. However, only recently technologies for the targeted and tissue specific modification of rat genes - a prerequisite for a detailed study of the 5-HT system - have been successfully developed. Here, we describe a rat transgenic system for inducible gene manipulations in 5-HT neurons. We generated a Cre driver line consisting of a tamoxifen-inducible CreERT2 recombinase under the control of mouse Tph2 regulatory sequences. Tissue-specific serotonergic Cre recombinase expression was detected in four transgenic TPH2-CreERT2 rat founder lines. For functional analysis of Cre-mediated recombination, we used a rat Cre reporter line (CAG-loxP.EGFP), in which EGFP is expressed after Cre-mediated removal of a loxP-flanked lacZ STOP cassette. We show an in-depth characterisation of this rat Cre reporter line and demonstrate its applicability for monitoring Cre-mediated recombination in all major neuronal subpopulations of the rat brain. Upon tamoxifen induction, double transgenic TPH2-CreERT2/CAG-loxP.EGFP rats show selective and efficient EGFP expression in 5-HT neurons. Without tamoxifen administration, EGFP is only expressed in few 5-HT neurons which confirms minimal background recombination. This 5-HT neuron specific CreERT2 line allows Cre-mediated, inducible gene deletion or gene overexpression in transgenic rats which provides new opportunities to decipher the complex functions of the mammalian serotonergic system. PMID:22140568

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-01-01

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

  10. Horizontal gene transfer in parasitic plants.

    PubMed

    Davis, Charles C; Xi, Zhenxiang

    2015-08-01

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

  11. Synchronized Inhibition Boosts Information Transfer in Entrained Neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tiesinga, Paul; Fellous, Jean-Marc; Jose, Jorge; Sejnowski, Terrence

    2001-03-01

    We investigated the ability of a single neuron to transduce the information content of a synchronized inhibitory synaptic drive, generated by an interneuron network, into an information-rich output of neuron spike times. The neuron was entrained to the periodic network drive when the jitter in the input spike times is sufficiently small (i.e. high precision), and the number of presynaptic spikes during one drive cycle is sufficiently large. The Shannon entropy of the output of spike times was reduced sharply during entrainment. Surprisingly, however, the amount of transduced information as measured by the mutual information was significantly increased during entrainment. This increase was due to the reduced contribution of the internal correlations to the output variability. These theoretical predictions were confirmed in experimental recordings from the rat neocortex and hippocampus.

  12. Phenotypic characteristics of hybrid cells generated by transferring neuronal nuclei into bone marrow stromal cell cytoplasts.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Zhujuan; Xu, Yan; Zhong, Qi; Zheng, Jian

    2012-02-10

    Bone marrow stromal cells (BMSCs) are promising donor cells for transplantation therapies for a variety of diseases. However, there still lack efficient ways to induce directional differentiation of BMSCs to promote their practical use in transplantation therapy. In this study, we constructed hybrid cells by transferring neuronal nuclei into BMSC cytoplasts and investigated the proliferative capacity and phenotypic characteristics of the hybrid cells. The neuronal nuclei were labeled with Hoechst 33342 before the transfer process, and the cell membrane antigen CD71 was used as a marker of BMSC cytoplasts. The BMSC cytoplasts and neuronal karyoplasts were separated by Ficoll density gradient ultracentrifugation. The hybrid cells were generated by the polyethylene glycol-mediated fusion of BMSC cytoplasts with neuronal karyoplasts. The hybrid cells exhibited Hoechst 33342 staining in their nuclei and CD71 staining on their cytomembranes, which confirmed the success of cell fusion. The hybrid cells were positive for BrdU immunostaining. Viability analysis of the cultured hybrid cells by the MTT assay demonstrated their proliferative ability. Immunocytochemical staining revealed the expression of the neuron-specific markers NeuN and MAP2 in the third passage hybrid cells, which indicated their neuronal phenotypic characteristics. The results demonstrated that the hybrid cells produced by fusing neuronal karyoplasts with BMSC cytoplasts had proliferative capability and expressed the neuron-specific markers. Further study is required to investigate the phenotype of the hybrid cells both structurally and functionally.

  13. Adenovirus-mediated gene delivery to hypothalamic magnocellular neurons in mice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vasquez, E. C.; Beltz, T. G.; Meyrelles, S. S.; Johnson, A. K.

    1999-01-01

    Vasopressin is synthesized by magnocellular neurons in supraoptic (SON) and paraventricular (PVN) hypothalamic nuclei and released by their axon terminals in the neurohypophysis (NH). With its actions as an antidiuretic hormone and vasoactive agent, vasopressin plays a pivotal role in the control of body fluids and cardiovascular homeostasis. Because of its well-defined neurobiology and functional importance, the SON/PVN-NH system is ideal to establish methods for gene transfer of genetic material into specific pathways in the mouse central nervous system. In these studies, we compared the efficiency of transferring the gene lacZ, encoding for beta-galactosidase (beta-gal), versus a gene encoding for green fluorescent protein by using replication-deficient adenovirus (Ad) vectors in adult mice. Transfection with viral concentrations up to 2 x 10(7) plaque-forming units per coverslip of NH, PVN, and SON in dissociated, cultured cells caused efficient transfection without cytotoxicity. However, over an extended period of time, higher levels (50% to 75% of the cells) of beta-gal expression were detected in comparison with green fluorescent protein (5% to 50% of the cells). With the use of a stereotaxic approach, the pituitary glands of mice were injected with Ad (4 x 10(6) plaque-forming units). In material from these animals, we were able to visualize the expression of the beta-gal gene in the NH and in magnocellular neurons of both the PVN and SON. The results of these experiments indicate that Ad-Rous sarcoma virus promoter-beta-gal is taken up by nerve terminals at the injection site (NH) and retrogradely transported to the soma of the neurons projecting to the NH. We conclude that the application of these experimental approaches will provide powerful tools for physiological studies and potential approaches to deliver therapeutic genes to treat diseases.

  14. Reducible cationic lipids for gene transfer.

    PubMed Central

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

    2001-01-01

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

  15. Reducible cationic lipids for gene transfer.

    PubMed

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

    2001-06-15

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

  16. Horizontal gene transfer from Agrobacterium to plants

    PubMed Central

    Matveeva, Tatiana V.; Lutova, Ludmila A.

    2014-01-01

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

  17. Gene duplication and transfer events in plant mitochondria genome

    SciTech Connect

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

    2008-11-07

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

  18. Horizontal gene transfer: A critical view

    PubMed Central

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

    2003-01-01

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

  19. Dissecting differential gene expression within the circadian neuronal circuit of Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Nagoshi, Emi; Sugino, Ken; Kula, Ela; Okazaki, Etsuko; Tachibana, Taro; Nelson, Sacha; Rosbash, Michael

    2013-01-01

    Behavioral circadian rhythms are controlled by a neuronal circuit consisting of diverse neuronal subgroups. To understand the molecular mechanisms underlying the roles of neuronal subgroups within the Drosophila circadian circuit, we used cell-type specific gene-expression profiling and identified a large number of genes specifically expressed in all clock neurons or in two important subgroups. Moreover, we identified and characterized two circadian genes, which are expressed specifically in subsets of clock cells and affect different aspects of rhythms. The transcription factor Fer2 is expressed in ventral lateral neurons; it is required for the specification of lateral neurons and therefore their ability to drive locomotor rhythms. The Drosophila melanogaster homolog of the vertebrate circadian gene nocturnin is expressed in a subset of dorsal neurons and mediates the circadian light response. The approach should also enable the molecular dissection of many different Drosophila neuronal circuits. PMID:19966839

  20. Orexin gene transfer into the amygdala suppresses both spontaneous and emotion-induced cataplexy in orexin-knockout mice.

    PubMed

    Liu, Meng; Blanco-Centurion, Carlos; Konadhode, Roda Rani; Luan, Liju; Shiromani, Priyattam J

    2016-03-01

    Narcolepsy is a chronic sleep disorder linked to the loss of orexin-producing neurons in the hypothalamus. Cataplexy, a sudden loss of muscle tone during waking, is an important distinguishing symptom of narcolepsy and it is often triggered by strong emotions. The neural circuit underlying cataplexy attacks is not known, but is likely to involve the amygdala, a region implicated in regulating emotions. In mice models of narcolepsy, transfer of the orexin gene into surrogate neurons has been successful in ameliorating narcoleptic symptoms. However, it is not known whether this method also blocks cataplexy triggered by strong emotions. To examine this possibility, the gene encoding mouse prepro-orexin was transferred into amygdala neurons of orexin-knockout (KO) mice (rAAV-orexin; n = 8). Orexin-KO mice that did not receive gene transfer (no-rAAV; n = 7) or received only the reporter gene (rAAV-GFP; n = 7) served as controls. Three weeks later, the animal's sleep and behaviour were recorded at night (no-odour control night), followed by another recording at night in the presence of predator odour (odour night). Orexin-KO mice given the orexin gene transfer into surrogate amygdala neurons had significantly less spontaneous bouts of cataplexy, and predator odour did not induce cataplexy compared with control mice. Moreover, the mice with orexin gene transfer were awake more during the odour night. These results demonstrate that orexin gene transfer into amygdala neurons can suppress both spontaneous and emotion-induced cataplexy attacks in narcoleptic mice. It suggests that manipulating amygdala pathways is a potential strategy for treating cataplexy in narcolepsy.

  1. Gain control of synaptic transfer from second- to third-order neurons of cockroach ocelli

    PubMed Central

    1996-01-01

    Synaptic transmission from second- to third-order neurons of cockroach ocelli occurs in an exponentially rising part of the overall sigmoidal characteristic curve relating pre- and postsynaptic voltage. Because of the nonlinear nature of the synapse, linear responses of second-order neurons to changes in ligh intensity are half-wave rectified, i.e., the response to a decrement in light is amplified whereas that to an increment in light is compressed. Here I report that the gain of synaptic transmission from second- to third-order neurons changes by ambient light levels and by wind stimulation applied to the cerci. Transfer characteristics of the synapse were studied by simultaneous intracellular recordings of second- and third-order neurons. Potential changes were evoked in second-order neurons by a sinusoidally modulated light with various mean luminances. With a decrease in the mean luminance (a) the mean membrane potential of second-order neurons was depolarized, (b) the synapse between the second- and third-order neurons operated in a steeper range of the exponential characteristic curve, where the gain to transmit modulatory signals was higher, and (c) the gain of third-order neurons to detect a decrement in light increased. Second-order neurons were depolarized when a wind or tactile stimulus was applied to various parts of the body including the cerci. During a wind-evoked depolarization, the synapse operated in a steeper range of the characteristic curve, which resulted in an increased gain of third-order neurons to detect light decrements. I conclude that the nonlinear nature of the synapse between the second- and third-order neurons provides an opportunity for an adjustment of gain to transmit signals of intensity change. The possibility that a similar gain control occurs in other visual systems and underlies a more advanced visual function, i.e., detection of motion, is discussed. PMID:8741734

  2. Optical gene transfer by femtosecond laser pulses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2003-07-01

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

  3. Correlation and synchrony transfer in integrate-and-fire neurons: basic properties and consequences for coding.

    PubMed

    Shea-Brown, Eric; Josić, Kresimir; de la Rocha, Jaime; Doiron, Brent

    2008-03-14

    We study how pairs of neurons transfer correlated input currents into correlated spikes. Over rapid time scales, correlation transfer increases with both spike time variability and rate; the dependence on variability disappears at large time scales. This persists for a nonlinear membrane model and for heterogeneous cell pairs, but strong nonmonotonicities follow from refractory effects. We present consequences for population coding and for the encoding of time-varying stimuli.

  4. Plant transformation via pollen tube-mediated gene transfer

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

  5. Gene Transfer & Hybridization Studies in Hyperthermophilic Species

    SciTech Connect

    Nelson, Karen E.

    2005-10-14

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

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

    PubMed

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

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

  7. Direct transfer of viral and cellular proteins from varicella-zoster virus-infected non-neuronal cells to human axons.

    PubMed

    Grigoryan, Sergei; Yee, Michael B; Glick, Yair; Gerber, Doron; Kepten, Eldad; Garini, Yuval; Yang, In Hong; Kinchington, Paul R; Goldstein, Ronald S

    2015-01-01

    Varicella Zoster Virus (VZV), the alphaherpesvirus that causes varicella upon primary infection and Herpes zoster (shingles) following reactivation in latently infected neurons, is known to be fusogenic. It forms polynuclear syncytia in culture, in varicella skin lesions and in infected fetal human ganglia xenografted to mice. After axonal infection using VZV expressing green fluorescent protein (GFP) in compartmentalized microfluidic cultures there is diffuse filling of axons with GFP as well as punctate fluorescence corresponding to capsids. Use of viruses with fluorescent fusions to VZV proteins reveals that both proteins encoded by VZV genes and those of the infecting cell are transferred in bulk from infecting non-neuronal cells to axons. Similar transfer of protein to axons was observed following cell associated HSV1 infection. Fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP) experiments provide evidence that this transfer is by diffusion of proteins from the infecting cells into axons. Time-lapse movies and immunocytochemical experiments in co-cultures demonstrate that non-neuronal cells fuse with neuronal somata and proteins from both cell types are present in the syncytia formed. The fusogenic nature of VZV therefore may enable not only conventional entry of virions and capsids into axonal endings in the skin by classical entry mechanisms, but also by cytoplasmic fusion that permits viral protein transfer to neurons in bulk.

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-12-01

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

  9. Postnatal Gene Therapy Improves Spatial Learning Despite the Presence of Neuronal Ectopia in a Model of Neuronal Migration Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Huaiyu; Liu, Yu; Bampoe, Kevin; He, Yonglin; Yu, Miao

    2016-01-01

    Patients with type II lissencephaly, a neuronal migration disorder with ectopic neurons, suffer from severe mental retardation, including learning deficits. There is no effective therapy to prevent or correct the formation of neuronal ectopia, which is presumed to cause cognitive deficits. We hypothesized that learning deficits were not solely caused by neuronal ectopia and that postnatal gene therapy could improve learning without correcting the neuronal ectopia formed during fetal development. To test this hypothesis, we evaluated spatial learning of cerebral cortex-specific protein O-mannosyltransferase 2 (POMT2, an enzyme required for O-mannosyl glycosylation) knockout mice and compared to the knockout mice that were injected with an adeno-associated viral vector (AAV) encoding POMT2 into the postnatal brains with Barnes maze. The data showed that the knockout mice exhibited reduced glycosylation in the cerebral cortex, reduced dendritic spine density on CA1 neurons, and increased latency to the target hole in the Barnes maze, indicating learning deficits. Postnatal gene therapy restored functional glycosylation, rescued dendritic spine defects, and improved performance on the Barnes maze by the knockout mice even though neuronal ectopia was not corrected. These results indicate that postnatal gene therapy improves spatial learning despite the presence of neuronal ectopia. PMID:27916859

  10. Methods for Gene Transfer to the Central Nervous System

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  11. Neuronal Correlates of Cross-Modal Transfer in the Cerebellum and Pontine Nuclei

    PubMed Central

    Campolattaro, Matthew M.; Kashef, Alireza; Lee, Inah; Freeman, John H.

    2011-01-01

    Cross-modal transfer occurs when learning established with a stimulus from one sensory modality facilitates subsequent learning with a new stimulus from a different sensory modality. The current study examined neuronal correlates of cross-modal transfer of Pavlovian eyeblink conditioning in rats. Neuronal activity was recorded from tetrodes within the anterior interpositus nucleus (IPN) of the cerebellum and basilar pontine nucleus (PN) during different phases of training. After stimulus pre-exposure and unpaired training sessions with a tone conditioned stimulus (CS), light CS, and periorbital stimulation unconditioned stimulus (US), rats received associative training with one of the CSs and the US (CS1-US). Training then continued on the same day with the other CS to assess cross-modal transfer (CS2-US). The final training session included associative training with both CSs on separate trials to establish stronger cross-modal transfer (CS1/CS2). Neurons in the IPN and PN showed primarily unimodal responses during pre-training sessions. Learning-related facilitation of activity correlated with the conditioned response (CR) developed in the IPN and PN during CS1-US training. Subsequent CS2-US training resulted in acquisition of CRs and learning-related neuronal activity in the IPN but substantially less little learning-related activity in the PN. Additional CS1/CS2 training increased CRs and learning-related activity in the IPN and PN during CS2-US trials. The findings suggest that cross-modal neuronal plasticity in the PN is driven by excitatory feedback from the IPN to the PN. Interacting plasticity mechanisms in the IPN and PN may underlie behavioral cross-modal transfer in eyeblink conditioning. PMID:21411647

  12. Constitutive expression of the neuron-restrictive silencer factor (NRSF)/REST in differentiating neurons disrupts neuronal gene expression and causes axon pathfinding errors in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Paquette, Alice J.; Perez, Sharon E.; Anderson, David J.

    2000-01-01

    The neuron-restrictive silencer factor (NRSF; also known as REST for repressor element-1 silencing transcription factor) is a transcriptional repressor of multiple neuronal genes, but little is known about its function in vivo. NRSF is normally down-regulated upon neuronal differentiation. Constitutive expression of NRSF in the developing spinal cord of chicken embryos caused repression of two endogenous target genes, N-tubulin and Ng-CAM, but did not prevent overt neurogenesis. Nevertheless, commissural neurons that differentiated while constitutively expressing NRSF showed a significantly increased frequency of axon guidance errors. These data suggest that down-regulation of NRSF is necessary for the proper development of at least some classes of neurons in vivo. PMID:11050251

  13. Widespread Central Nervous System Gene Transfer and Silencing After Systemic Delivery of Novel AAV-AS Vector.

    PubMed

    Choudhury, Sourav R; Harris, Anne F; Cabral, Damien J; Keeler, Allison M; Sapp, Ellen; Ferreira, Jennifer S; Gray-Edwards, Heather L; Johnson, Jacob A; Johnson, Aime K; Su, Qin; Stoica, Lorelei; DiFiglia, Marian; Aronin, Neil; Martin, Douglas R; Gao, Guangping; Sena-Esteves, Miguel

    2016-04-01

    Effective gene delivery to the central nervous system (CNS) is vital for development of novel gene therapies for neurological diseases. Adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors have emerged as an effective platform for in vivo gene transfer, but overall neuronal transduction efficiency of vectors derived from naturally occurring AAV capsids after systemic administration is relatively low. Here, we investigated the possibility of improving CNS transduction of existing AAV capsids by genetically fusing peptides to the N-terminus of VP2 capsid protein. A novel vector AAV-AS, generated by the insertion of a poly-alanine peptide, is capable of extensive gene transfer throughout the CNS after systemic administration in adult mice. AAV-AS is 6- and 15-fold more efficient than AAV9 in spinal cord and cerebrum, respectively. The neuronal transduction profile varies across brain regions but is particularly high in the striatum where AAV-AS transduces 36% of striatal neurons. Widespread neuronal gene transfer was also documented in cat brain and spinal cord. A single intravenous injection of an AAV-AS vector encoding an artificial microRNA targeting huntingtin (Htt) resulted in 33-50% knockdown of Htt across multiple CNS structures in adult mice. This novel AAV-AS vector is a promising platform to develop new gene therapies for neurodegenerative disorders.

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

    SciTech Connect

    Tennessen, D.J.

    1997-01-01

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tennessen, Daniel J.

    1997-01-01

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

  16. Imaging gene delivery in a mouse model of congenital neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis.

    PubMed

    Pike, L S; Tannous, B A; Deliolanis, N C; Hsich, G; Morse, D; Tung, C-H; Sena-Esteves, M; Breakefield, X O

    2011-12-01

    Adeno-associated virus (AAV)-mediated gene replacement for lysosomal disorders have been spurred by the ability of some serotypes to efficiently transduce neurons in the brain and by the ability of lysosomal enzymes to cross-correct among cells. Here, we explored enzyme replacement therapy in a knock-out mouse model of congenital neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis (NCL), the most severe of the NCLs in humans. The missing protease in this disorder, cathepsin D (CathD) has high levels in the central nervous system. This enzyme has the potential advantage for assessing experimental therapy in that it can be imaged using a near-infrared fluorescence (NIRF) probe activated by CathD. Injections of an AAV2/rh8 vector-encoding mouse CathD (mCathD) into both cerebral ventricles and peritoneum of newborn knock-out mice resulted in a significant increase in lifespan. Successful delivery of active CathD by the AAV2/rh8-mCathD vector was verified by NIRF imaging of mouse embryonic fibroblasts from knock-out mice in culture, as well as by ex vivo NIRF imaging of the brain and liver after gene transfer. These studies support the potential effectiveness and imaging evaluation of enzyme replacement therapy to the brain and other organs in CathD null mice via AAV-mediated gene delivery in neonatal animals.

  17. Identification of nonviable genes affecting touch sensitivity in Caenorhabditis elegans using neuronally enhanced feeding RNA interference.

    PubMed

    Chen, Xiaoyin; Cuadros, Margarete Diaz; Chalfie, Martin

    2015-01-09

    Caenorhabditis elegans senses gentle touch along the body via six touch receptor neurons. Although genetic screens and microarray analyses have identified several genes needed for touch sensitivity, these methods miss pleiotropic genes that are essential for the viability, movement, or fertility of the animals. We used neuronally enhanced feeding RNA interference to screen genes that cause lethality or paralysis when mutated, and we identified 61 such genes affecting touch sensitivity, including five positive controls. We confirmed 18 genes by using available alleles, and further studied one of them, tag-170, now renamed txdc-9. txdc-9 preferentially affects anterior touch response but is needed for tubulin acetylation and microtubule formation in both the anterior and posterior touch receptor neurons. Our results indicate that neuronally enhanced feeding RNA interference screens complement traditional mutageneses by identifying additional nonviable genes needed for specific neuronal functions.

  18. Cell-to-cell transfer of glial proteins to the squid giant axon: The glia- neuron protein transfer hypothesis

    PubMed Central

    Lasek, RJ; Gainer, H; Barker, JL

    1977-01-01

    The hypothesis that glial cells synthesize proteins which are transferred to adjacent neurons was evaluated in the giant fiber of the squid (Loligo pealei). When giant fibers are separated from their neuron cell bodies and incubated in the presence of radioactive amino acids, labeled proteins appear in the glial cells and axoplasm. Labeled axonal proteins were detected by three methods: extrusion of the axoplasm from the giant fiber, autoradiography, and perfusion of the giant fiber. This protein synthesis is completely inhibited by puromycin but is not affected by chloramphenicol. The following evidence indicates that the labeled axonal proteins are not synthesized within the axon itself. (a) The axon does not contain a significant amount of ribosomes or ribosomal RNA. (b) Isolated axoplasm did not incorporate [(3)H]leucine into proteins. (c) Injection of Rnase into the giant axon did not reduce the appearance of newly synthesized proteins in the axoplasm of the giant fiber. These findings, coupled with other evidence, have led us to conclude that the adaxonal glial cells synthesize a class of proteins which are transferred to the giant axon. Analysis of the kinetics of this phenomenon indicates that some proteins are transferred to the axon within minutes of their synthesis in the glial cells. One or more of the steps in the transfer process appear to involve Ca++, since replacement of extracellular Ca++ by either Mg++ or Co++ significantly reduces the appearance of labeled proteins in the axon. A substantial fraction of newly synthesized glial proteins, possibly as much as 40 percent, are transferred to the giant axon. These proteins are heterogeneous and range in size from 12,000 to greater than 200,000 daltons. Comparisons of the amount of amino acid incorporation in glia cells and neuron cell bodies raise the possibility that the adaxonal glial cells may provide an important source of axonal proteins which is supplemental to that provided by axonal transport

  19. Identification of neuron-related genes for cell therapy of neurological disorders by network analysis* #

    PubMed Central

    Su, Li-ning; Song, Xiao-qing; Wei, Hui-ping; Yin, Hai-feng

    2017-01-01

    Bone mesenchymal stem cells (BMSCs) differentiated into neurons have been widely proposed for use in cell therapy of many neurological disorders. It is therefore important to understand the molecular mechanisms underlying this differentiation. We screened differentially expressed genes between immature neural tissues and untreated BMSCs to identify the genes responsible for neuronal differentiation from BMSCs. GSE68243 gene microarray data of rat BMSCs and GSE18860 gene microarray data of rat neurons were received from the Gene Expression Omnibus database. Transcriptome Analysis Console software showed that 1248 genes were up-regulated and 1273 were down-regulated in neurons compared with BMSCs. Gene Ontology functional enrichment, protein-protein interaction networks, functional modules, and hub genes were analyzed using DAVID, STRING 10, BiNGO tool, and Network Analyzer software, revealing that nine hub genes, Nrcam, Sema3a, Mapk8, Dlg4, Slit1, Creb1, Ntrk2, Cntn2, and Pax6, may play a pivotal role in neuronal differentiation from BMSCs. Seven genes, Dcx, Nrcam, Sema3a, Cntn2, Slit1, Ephb1, and Pax6, were shown to be hub nodes within the neuronal development network, while six genes, Fgf2, Tgfβ1, Vegfa, Serpine1, Il6, and Stat1, appeared to play an important role in suppressing neuronal differentiation. However, additional studies are required to confirm these results. PMID:28124845

  20. Identification of neuron-related genes for cell therapy of neurological disorders by network analysis.

    PubMed

    Su, Li-Ning; Song, Xiao-Qing; Wei, Hui-Ping; Yin, Hai-Feng

    Bone mesenchymal stem cells (BMSCs) differentiated into neurons have been widely proposed for use in cell therapy of many neurological disorders. It is therefore important to understand the molecular mechanisms underlying this differentiation. We screened differentially expressed genes between immature neural tissues and untreated BMSCs to identify the genes responsible for neuronal differentiation from BMSCs. GSE68243 gene microarray data of rat BMSCs and GSE18860 gene microarray data of rat neurons were received from the Gene Expression Omnibus database. Transcriptome Analysis Console software showed that 1248 genes were up-regulated and 1273 were down-regulated in neurons compared with BMSCs. Gene Ontology functional enrichment, protein-protein interaction networks, functional modules, and hub genes were analyzed using DAVID, STRING 10, BiNGO tool, and Network Analyzer software, revealing that nine hub genes, Nrcam, Sema3a, Mapk8, Dlg4, Slit1, Creb1, Ntrk2, Cntn2, and Pax6, may play a pivotal role in neuronal differentiation from BMSCs. Seven genes, Dcx, Nrcam, sema3a, Cntn2, Slit1, Ephb1, and Pax6, were shown to be hub nodes within the neuronal development network, while six genes, Fgf2, Tgfβ1, Vegfa, Serpine1, Il6, and Stat1, appeared to play an important role in suppressing neuronal differentiation. However, additional studies are required to confirm these results.

  1. Targeting single neuronal networks for gene expression and cell labeling in vivo.

    PubMed

    Marshel, James H; Mori, Takuma; Nielsen, Kristina J; Callaway, Edward M

    2010-08-26

    To understand fine-scale structure and function of single mammalian neuronal networks, we developed and validated a strategy to genetically target and trace monosynaptic inputs to a single neuron in vitro and in vivo. The strategy independently targets a neuron and its presynaptic network for specific gene expression and fine-scale labeling, using single-cell electroporation of DNA to target infection and monosynaptic retrograde spread of a genetically modifiable rabies virus. The technique is highly reliable, with transsynaptic labeling occurring in every electroporated neuron infected by the virus. Targeting single neocortical neuronal networks in vivo, we found clusters of both spiny and aspiny neurons surrounding the electroporated neuron in each case, in addition to intricately labeled distal cortical and subcortical inputs. This technique, broadly applicable for probing and manipulating single neuronal networks with single-cell resolution in vivo, may help shed new light on fundamental mechanisms underlying circuit development and information processing by neuronal networks throughout the brain.

  2. A Versatile Vector for Gene and Oligonucleotide Transfer into Cells in Culture and in vivo: Polyethylenimine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boussif, Otmane; Lezoualc'h, Frank; Zanta, Maria Antonietta; Djavaheri Mergny, Mojgan; Scherman, Daniel; Demeneix, Barbara; Behr, Jean-Paul

    1995-08-01

    Several polycations possessing substantial buffering capacity below physiological pH, such as lipopolyamines and polyamidoamine polymers, are efficient transfection agents per se-i.e., without the addition of cell targeting or membrane-disruption agents. This observation led us to test the cationic polymer polyethylenimine (PEI) for its genedelivery potential. Indeed, every third atom of PEI is a protonable amino nitrogen atom, which makes the polymeric network an effective "proton sponge" at virtually any pH. Luciferase reporter gene transfer with this polycation into a variety of cell lines and primary cells gave results comparable to, or even better than, lipopolyamines. Cytotoxicity was low and seen only at concentrations well above those required for optimal transfection. Delivery of oligonucleotides into embryonic neurons was followed by using a fluorescent probe. Virtually all neurons showed nuclear labeling, with no toxic effects. The optimal PEI cation/anion balance for in vitro transfection is only slightly on the cationic side, which is advantageous for in vivo delivery. Indeed, intracerebral luciferase gene transfer into newborn mice gave results comparable (for a given amount of DNA) to the in vitro transfection of primary rat brain endothelial cells or chicken embryonic neurons. Together, these properties make PEI a promising vector for gene therapy and an outstanding core for the design of more sophisticated devices. Our hypothesis is that its efficiency relies on extensive lysosome buffering that protects DNA from nuclease degradation, and consequent lysosomal swelling and rupture that provide an escape mechanism for the PEI/DNA particles.

  3. Guanidinylated block copolymers for gene transfer: A comparison with amine-based materials for in vitro and in vivo gene transfer efficiency

    PubMed Central

    Choi, Jennifer L.; Tan, James-Kevin Y.; Sellers, Drew L.; Wei, Hua; Horner, Philip J.; Pun, Suzie H.

    2015-01-01

    There is currently no cure for neuron loss in the brain, which can occur due to traumatic injury or neurodegenerative disease. One method proposed to enhance neurogenesis in the brain is gene transfer to neural progenitor cells. In this work, a guanidine-based copolymer was synthesized and compared to an amine-based copolymer analog previously shown to effectively deliver genes in the murine brain. The guanidine-based copolymer was more efficient at gene transfer to immortalized, cultured cell lines; however, the amine-based copolymer was more effective at gene transfer in the brain. DNA condensation studies revealed that the nucleic acid complexes formed with the guanidine-based copolymer were more susceptible to unpackaging in the presence of heparin sulfate proteoglycans compared to complexes formed with the amine-based copolymer. Therefore, polyplexes formed from the amine-based copolymer may be more resistant to destabilization by the heparan sulfate proteoglycans present in the stem cell niches of the brain. PMID:25907042

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

    PubMed

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

    2004-09-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Poptsova, Maria S; Gogarten, J Peter

    2007-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

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

  7. LATERAL GENE TRANSFER AND THE HISTORY OF BACTERIAL GENOMES

    SciTech Connect

    Howard Ochman

    2006-02-22

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2002-01-01

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

  9. Unbiased View of Synaptic and Neuronal Gene Complement in Ctenophores: Are There Pan-neuronal and Pan-synaptic Genes across Metazoa?

    PubMed

    Moroz, Leonid L; Kohn, Andrea B

    2015-12-01

    Hypotheses of origins and evolution of neurons and synapses are controversial, mostly due to limited comparative data. Here, we investigated the genome-wide distribution of the bilaterian "synaptic" and "neuronal" protein-coding genes in non-bilaterian basal metazoans (Ctenophora, Porifera, Placozoa, and Cnidaria). First, there are no recognized genes uniquely expressed in neurons across all metazoan lineages. None of the so-called pan-neuronal genes such as embryonic lethal abnormal vision (ELAV), Musashi, or Neuroglobin are expressed exclusively in neurons of the ctenophore Pleurobrachia. Second, our comparative analysis of about 200 genes encoding canonical presynaptic and postsynaptic proteins in bilaterians suggests that there are no true "pan-synaptic" genes or genes uniquely and specifically attributed to all classes of synapses. The majority of these genes encode receptive and secretory complexes in a broad spectrum of eukaryotes. Trichoplax (Placozoa) an organism without neurons and synapses has more orthologs of bilaterian synapse-related/neuron-related genes than do ctenophores-the group with well-developed neuronal and synaptic organization. Third, the majority of genes encoding ion channels and ionotropic receptors are broadly expressed in unicellular eukaryotes and non-neuronal tissues in metazoans. Therefore, they cannot be viewed as neuronal markers. Nevertheless, the co-expression of multiple types of ion channels and receptors does correlate with the presence of neural and synaptic organization. As an illustrative example, the ctenophore genomes encode a greater diversity of ion channels and ionotropic receptors compared with the genomes of the placozoan Trichoplax and the demosponge Amphimedon. Surprisingly, both placozoans and sponges have a similar number of orthologs of "synaptic" proteins as we identified in the genomes of two ctenophores. Ctenophores have a distinct synaptic organization compared with other animals. Our analysis of

  10. Single-Cell Gene Expression Analysis of Cholinergic Neurons in the Arcuate Nucleus of the Hypothalamus

    PubMed Central

    Chua, Streamson; Jo, Young-Hwan

    2016-01-01

    The cholinoceptive system in the hypothalamus, in particular in the arcuate nucleus (ARC), plays a role in regulating food intake. Neurons in the ARC contain multiple neuropeptides, amines, and neurotransmitters. To study molecular and neurochemical heterogeneity of ARC neurons, we combine single-cell qRT-PCR and single-cell whole transcriptome amplification methods to analyze expression patterns of our hand-picked 60 genes in individual neurons in the ARC. Immunohistochemical and single-cell qRT-PCR analyses show choline acetyltransferase (ChAT)-expressing neurons in the ARC. Gene expression patterns are remarkably distinct in each individual cholinergic neuron. Two-thirds of cholinergic neurons express tyrosine hydroxylase (Th) mRNA. A large subset of these Th-positive cholinergic neurons is GABAergic as they express the GABA synthesizing enzyme glutamate decarboxylase and vesicular GABA transporter transcripts. Some cholinergic neurons also express the vesicular glutamate transporter transcript gene. POMC and POMC-processing enzyme transcripts are found in a subpopulation of cholinergic neurons. Despite this heterogeneity, gene expression patterns in individual cholinergic cells appear to be highly regulated in a cell-specific manner. In fact, membrane receptor transcripts are clustered with their respective intracellular signaling and downstream targets. This novel population of cholinergic neurons may be part of the neural circuitries that detect homeostatic need for food and control the drive to eat. PMID:27611685

  11. The LIM homeobox gene ceh-14 confers thermosensory function to the AFD neurons in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Cassata, G; Kagoshima, H; Andachi, Y; Kohara, Y; Dürrenberger, M B; Hall, D H; Bürglin, T R

    2000-03-01

    In Caenorhabditis elegans three pairs of neurons, AFD, AIY, and AIZ, play a key role in thermosensation. The LIM homeobox gene ceh-14 is expressed in the AFD thermosensory neurons. ceh-14 mutant animals display athermotactic behaviors, although the neurons are still present and differentiated. Two other LIM homeobox genes, ttx-3 and lin-11, function in the two interneurons AIY and AIZ, respectively. Thus, the three key thermosensory neurons are specified by three different LIM homeobox genes. ceh-14 ttx-3 lin-11 triple mutant animals have a basic cryophilic thermotaxis behavior indicative of a second thermotaxis pathway. Misexpression of ceh-14 in chemosensory neurons can restore thermotactic behavior without impairing the chemosensory function. Thus, ceh-14 confers thermosensory function to neurons.

  12. Unbiased View of Synaptic and Neuronal Gene Complement in Ctenophores: Are There Pan-neuronal and Pan-synaptic Genes across Metazoa?

    PubMed Central

    Moroz, Leonid L.; Kohn, Andrea B.

    2015-01-01

    Hypotheses of origins and evolution of neurons and synapses are controversial, mostly due to limited comparative data. Here, we investigated the genome-wide distribution of the bilaterian “synaptic” and “neuronal” protein-coding genes in non-bilaterian basal metazoans (Ctenophora, Porifera, Placozoa, and Cnidaria). First, there are no recognized genes uniquely expressed in neurons across all metazoan lineages. None of the so-called pan-neuronal genes such as embryonic lethal abnormal vision (ELAV), Musashi, or Neuroglobin are expressed exclusively in neurons of the ctenophore Pleurobrachia. Second, our comparative analysis of about 200 genes encoding canonical presynaptic and postsynaptic proteins in bilaterians suggests that there are no true “pan-synaptic” genes or genes uniquely and specifically attributed to all classes of synapses. The majority of these genes encode receptive and secretory complexes in a broad spectrum of eukaryotes. Trichoplax (Placozoa) an organism without neurons and synapses has more orthologs of bilaterian synapse-related/neuron-related genes than do ctenophores—the group with well-developed neuronal and synaptic organization. Third, the majority of genes encoding ion channels and ionotropic receptors are broadly expressed in unicellular eukaryotes and non-neuronal tissues in metazoans. Therefore, they cannot be viewed as neuronal markers. Nevertheless, the co-expression of multiple types of ion channels and receptors does correlate with the presence of neural and synaptic organization. As an illustrative example, the ctenophore genomes encode a greater diversity of ion channels and ionotropic receptors compared with the genomes of the placozoan Trichoplax and the demosponge Amphimedon. Surprisingly, both placozoans and sponges have a similar number of orthologs of “synaptic” proteins as we identified in the genomes of two ctenophores. Ctenophores have a distinct synaptic organization compared with other animals. Our

  13. In utero Electroporation followed by Primary Neuronal Culture for Studying Gene Function in Subset of Cortical Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Rice, Heather; Suth, Seiyam; Cavanaugh, William; Bai, Jilin; Young-Pearse, Tracy L.

    2010-01-01

    In vitro study of primary neuronal cultures allows for quantitative analyses of neurite outgrowth. In order to study how genetic alterations affect neuronal process outgrowth, shRNA or cDNA constructs can be introduced into primary neurons via chemical transfection or viral transduction. However, with primary cortical cells, a heterogeneous pool of cell types (glutamatergic neurons from different layers, inhibitory neurons, glial cells) are transfected using these methods. The use of in utero electroporation to introduce DNA constructs in the embryonic rodent cortex allows for certain subsets of cells to be targeted: while electroporation of early embryonic cortex targets deep layers of the cortex, electroporation at late embryonic timepoints targets more superficial layers. Further, differential placement of electrodes across the heads of individual embryos results in the targeting of dorsal-medial versus ventral-lateral regions of the cortex. Following electroporation, transfected cells can be dissected out, dissociated, and plated in vitro for quantitative analysis of neurite outgrowth. Here, we provide a step-by-step method to quantitatively measure neuronal process outgrowth in subsets of cortical cells. The basic protocol for in utero electroporation has been described in detail in two other JoVE articles from the Kriegstein lab 1, 2. We will provide an overview of our protocol for in utero electroporation, focusing on the most important details, followed by a description of our protocol that applies in utero electroporation to the study of gene function in neuronal process outgrowth. PMID:20972409

  14. Zbtb20 defines a hippocampal neuronal identity through direct repression of genes that control projection neuron development in the isocortex.

    PubMed

    Nielsen, Jakob V; Thomassen, Mads; Møllgård, Kjeld; Noraberg, Jens; Jensen, Niels A

    2014-05-01

    Hippocampal pyramidal neurons are important for encoding and retrieval of spatial maps and episodic memories. While previous work has shown that Zbtb20 is a cell fate determinant for CA1 pyramidal neurons, the regulatory mechanisms governing this process are not known. In this study, we demonstrate that Zbtb20 binds to genes that control neuronal subtype specification in the developing isocortex, including Cux1, Cux2, Fezf2, Foxp2, Mef2c, Rorb, Satb2, Sox5, Tbr1, Tle4, and Zfpm2. We show that Zbtb20 represses these genes during ectopic CA1 pyramidal neuron development in transgenic mice. These data reveal a novel regulatory mechanism by which Zbtb20 suppresses the acquisition of an isocortical fate during archicortical neurogenesis to ensure commitment to a CA1 pyramidal neuron fate. We further show that the expression pattern of Zbtb20 is evolutionary conserved in the fetal human hippocampus, where it is complementary to the expression pattern of the Zbtb20 target gene Tbr1. Therefore, the disclosed Zbtb20-mediated transcriptional repressor mechanism may be involved in development of the human archicortex.

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-03-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2003-07-01

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

  17. Vesicular stomatitis virus enables gene transfer and transsynaptic tracing in a wide range of organisms

    PubMed Central

    Mundell, Nathan A.; Beier, Kevin T.; Pan, Y. Albert; Lapan, Sylvain W.; Göz Aytürk, Didem; Berezovskii, Vladimir K.; Wark, Abigail R.; Drokhlyansky, Eugene; Bielecki, Jan; Born, Richard T.; Schier, Alexander F.

    2015-01-01

    Current limitations in technology have prevented an extensive analysis of the connections among neurons, particularly within nonmammalian organisms. We developed a transsynaptic viral tracer originally for use in mice, and then tested its utility in a broader range of organisms. By engineering the vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) to encode a fluorophore and either the rabies virus glycoprotein (RABV‐G) or its own glycoprotein (VSV‐G), we created viruses that can transsynaptically label neuronal circuits in either the retrograde or anterograde direction, respectively. The vectors were investigated for their utility as polysynaptic tracers of chicken and zebrafish visual pathways. They showed patterns of connectivity consistent with previously characterized visual system connections, and revealed several potentially novel connections. Further, these vectors were shown to infect neurons in several other vertebrates, including Old and New World monkeys, seahorses, axolotls, and Xenopus. They were also shown to infect two invertebrates, Drosophila melanogaster, and the box jellyfish, Tripedalia cystophora, a species previously intractable for gene transfer, although no clear evidence of transsynaptic spread was observed in these species. These vectors provide a starting point for transsynaptic tracing in most vertebrates, and are also excellent candidates for gene transfer in organisms that have been refractory to other methods. J. Comp. Neurol. 523:1639–1663, 2015. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:25688551

  18. The forkhead domain gene unc-130 generates chemosensory neuron diversity in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Sarafi-Reinach, Trina R.; Sengupta, Piali

    2000-01-01

    Caenorhabditis elegans responds to its complex chemical environment using a small number of chemosensory neurons. Each of these neurons exhibits a unique sensory response repertoire. The developmental mechanisms that generate this diversity of function are largely unknown. Many C. elegans chemosensory neurons, including the AWA and ASG neurons, arise as lineal sisters of an asymmetric division. Here we describe the gene unc-130, which plays a role in the generation of the AWA and ASG neurons. In unc-130 mutants, the ASG neurons adopt the fate of the AWA neurons. unc-130 encodes a member of the forkhead domain family of transcription factors, and is expressed in the precursors to AWA and ASG neurons. Misexpression of unc-130 in the AWA neurons is partly sufficient to repress the AWA fate, but not to promote ASG fate. unc-130 also plays a role in the development of additional chemosensory neurons. Our experiments show that the ASG neurons share a developmental default state in common with three types of olfactory neurons. We propose that distinct cell fates and hence diversity of function in the chemosensory neurons of C. elegans are generated in a hierarchical manner, utilizing both lineage-dependent and independent mechanisms. PMID:11018015

  19. In vivo rapid gene delivery into postmitotic neocortical neurons using iontoporation.

    PubMed

    De la Rossa, Andres; Jabaudon, Denis

    2015-01-01

    This protocol describes a method for directing the expression of genes of interest into postmitotic neocortical neurons in vivo. Microinjection of a DNA plasmid-amphiphilic molecule mix into the neocortex followed by delivery of an ad hoc electric pulse protocol during the first few days of life in mice allows rapid, focal and efficient expression of genes in postmitotic neurons. Compared with other gene delivery techniques such as in utero electroporation and viral infection, this method allows rapid (12 h), focal (50-200 μm), mosaic-like (50 to several hundred neurons) targeting of postmitotic neurons within existing circuits. This 'iontoporation' protocol, which can be completed within ∼20 min per mouse, allows straightforward assessment of genetic constructs in postmitotic cortical neurons and subsequent genetic, histological and physiological investigations of gene function.

  20. A novel peptide delivers plasmids across blood-brain barrier into neuronal cells as a single-component transfer vector.

    PubMed

    Fu, Ailing; Zhang, Miaomiao; Gao, Feiyan; Xu, Xingran; Chen, Zhangbao

    2013-01-01

    There is no data up to now to show that peptide can deliver plasmid into brain as a single-component transfer vector. Here we show that a novel peptide, RDP (consisted of 39 amino acids), can be exploited as an efficient plasmid vector for brain-targeting delivery. The plasmids containing Lac Z reporter gene (pVAX-Lac Z) and BDNF gene (pVAX-BDNF) are complexed with RDP and intravenously injected into mice. The results of gel retardation assay show that RDP enables to bind DNA in a dose-dependent manner, and the X-Gal staining identity that Lac Z is specifically expressed in the brain. Also, the results of Western blot and immunofluorescence staining of BDNF indicate that pVAX-BDNF complexed with RDP can be delivered into brain, and show neuroprotective properties in experimental Parkinson's disease (PD) model. The results demonstrate that RDP enables to bind and deliver DNA into the brain, resulting in specific gene expression in the neuronal cells. This strategy provides a novel, simple and effective approach for non-viral gene therapy of brain diseases.

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

    PubMed

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

    2007-07-01

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

  2. Global Analysis of Horizontal Gene Transfer in Fusarium verticillioides

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

  5. Quantifying impacts of short-term plasticity on neuronal information transfer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scott, Pat; Cowan, Anna I.; Stricker, Christian

    2012-04-01

    Short-term changes in efficacy have been postulated to enhance the ability of synapses to transmit information between neurons, and within neuronal networks. Even at the level of connections between single neurons, direct confirmation of this simple conjecture has proven elusive. By combining paired-cell recordings, realistic synaptic modeling, and information theory, we provide evidence that short-term plasticity can not only improve, but also reduce information transfer between neurons. We focus on a concrete example in rat neocortex, but our results may generalize to other systems. When information is contained in the timings of individual spikes, we find that facilitation, depression, and recovery affect information transmission in proportion to their impacts upon the probability of neurotransmitter release. When information is instead conveyed by mean spike rate only, the influences of short-term plasticity critically depend on the range of spike frequencies that the target network can distinguish (its effective dynamic range). Our results suggest that to efficiently transmit information, the brain must match synaptic type, coding strategy, and network connectivity during development and behavior.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Schnepp, Bruce C; Johnson, Philip R

    2015-01-01

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

  8. The role of the ETS gene PEA3 in the development of motor and sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Ladle, David R; Frank, Eric

    2002-12-01

    The ETS family of transcription factors includes two members, ER81 and PEA3, which are expressed in groups of sensory and motor neurons supplying individual muscles. To investigate a possible role of these genes in determining sensory and/or motor neuron phenotype, we studied mice in which each of these genes was deleted. In contrast to the deletion of ER81, which blocks the formation of projections from muscle sensory neurons to motor neurons in the spinal cord, deletion of PEA3 causes no obvious effects on sensory neurons or on their synaptic connections with motor neurons. PEA3 does play a major role in the formation of some brachial motoneurons however. Motoneurons innervating the cutaneous maximus muscle, which are normally PEA3(+), fail to develop normally so that postnatally the muscle is innervated by few motoneurons and is severely atrophic. Other studies suggest that these motoneurons initially appear during development but fail to contact their normal muscle targets.

  9. Stochastic fluctuations in gene expression in aging hippocampal neurons could be exacerbated by traumatic brain injury.

    PubMed

    Shearer, Joseph; Boone, Deborah; Weisz, Harris; Jennings, Kristofer; Uchida, Tatsuo; Parsley, Margaret; DeWitt, Douglas; Prough, Donald; Hellmich, Helen

    2016-04-01

    Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a risk factor for age-related dementia and development of neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's disease that are associated with cognitive decline. The exact mechanism for this risk is unknown but we hypothesized that TBI is exacerbating age-related changes in gene expression. Here, we present evidence in an animal model that experimental TBI increases age-related stochastic gene expression. We compared the variability in expression of several genes associated with cell survival or death, among three groups of laser capture microdissected hippocampal neurons from aging rat brains. TBI increased stochastic fluctuations in gene expression in both dying and surviving neurons compared to the naïve neurons. Increases in random, stochastic fluctuations in prosurvival or prodeath gene expression could potentially alter cell survival or cell death pathways in aging neurons after TBI which may lead to age-related cognitive decline.

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

    PubMed

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

    2010-10-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2007-10-01

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

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

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1984-07-12

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

  13. Peripheral Nervous System Genes Expressed in Central Neurons Induce Growth on Inhibitory Substrates

    PubMed Central

    Buchser, William J.; Smith, Robin P.; Pardinas, Jose R.; Haddox, Candace L.; Hutson, Thomas; Moon, Lawrence; Hoffman, Stanley R.; Bixby, John L.; Lemmon, Vance P.

    2012-01-01

    Trauma to the spinal cord and brain can result in irreparable loss of function. This failure of recovery is in part due to inhibition of axon regeneration by myelin and chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans (CSPGs). Peripheral nervous system (PNS) neurons exhibit increased regenerative ability compared to central nervous system neurons, even in the presence of inhibitory environments. Previously, we identified over a thousand genes differentially expressed in PNS neurons relative to CNS neurons. These genes represent intrinsic differences that may account for the PNS’s enhanced regenerative ability. Cerebellar neurons were transfected with cDNAs for each of these PNS genes to assess their ability to enhance neurite growth on inhibitory (CSPG) or permissive (laminin) substrates. Using high content analysis, we evaluated the phenotypic profile of each neuron to extract meaningful data for over 1100 genes. Several known growth associated proteins potentiated neurite growth on laminin. Most interestingly, novel genes were identified that promoted neurite growth on CSPGs (GPX3, EIF2B5, RBMX). Bioinformatic approaches also uncovered a number of novel gene families that altered neurite growth of CNS neurons. PMID:22701605

  14. Peripheral nervous system genes expressed in central neurons induce growth on inhibitory substrates.

    PubMed

    Buchser, William J; Smith, Robin P; Pardinas, Jose R; Haddox, Candace L; Hutson, Thomas; Moon, Lawrence; Hoffman, Stanley R; Bixby, John L; Lemmon, Vance P

    2012-01-01

    Trauma to the spinal cord and brain can result in irreparable loss of function. This failure of recovery is in part due to inhibition of axon regeneration by myelin and chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans (CSPGs). Peripheral nervous system (PNS) neurons exhibit increased regenerative ability compared to central nervous system neurons, even in the presence of inhibitory environments. Previously, we identified over a thousand genes differentially expressed in PNS neurons relative to CNS neurons. These genes represent intrinsic differences that may account for the PNS's enhanced regenerative ability. Cerebellar neurons were transfected with cDNAs for each of these PNS genes to assess their ability to enhance neurite growth on inhibitory (CSPG) or permissive (laminin) substrates. Using high content analysis, we evaluated the phenotypic profile of each neuron to extract meaningful data for over 1100 genes. Several known growth associated proteins potentiated neurite growth on laminin. Most interestingly, novel genes were identified that promoted neurite growth on CSPGs (GPX3, EIF2B5, RBMX). Bioinformatic approaches also uncovered a number of novel gene families that altered neurite growth of CNS neurons.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2011-01-01

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

  16. Horizontal functional gene transfer from bacteria to fishes

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  17. Horizontal functional gene transfer from bacteria to fishes.

    PubMed

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

    2015-12-22

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2008-05-01

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

  19. Polycomb genes interact with the tumor suppressor genes hippo and warts in the maintenance of Drosophila sensory neuron dendrites

    PubMed Central

    Parrish, Jay Z.; Emoto, Kazuo; Jan, Lily Yeh; Jan, Yuh Nung

    2007-01-01

    Dendritic fields are important determinants of neuronal function. However, how neurons establish and then maintain their dendritic fields is not well understood. Here we show that Polycomb group (PcG) genes are required for maintenance of complete and nonoverlapping dendritic coverage of the larval body wall by Drosophila class IV dendrite arborization (da) neurons. In esc, Su(z)12, or Pc mutants, dendritic fields are established normally, but class IV neurons display a gradual loss of dendritic coverage, while axons remain normal in appearance, demonstrating that PcG genes are specifically required for dendrite maintenance. Both multiprotein Polycomb repressor complexes (PRCs) involved in transcriptional silencing are implicated in regulation of dendrite arborization in class IV da neurons, likely through regulation of homeobox (Hox) transcription factors. We further show genetic interactions and association between PcG proteins and the tumor suppressor kinase Warts (Wts), providing evidence for their cooperation in multiple developmental processes including dendrite maintenance. PMID:17437999

  20. Spatial gene's (Tbata) implication in neurite outgrowth and dendrite patterning in hippocampal neurons.

    PubMed

    Yammine, Miriam; Saade, Murielle; Chauvet, Sophie; Nguyen, Catherine

    2014-03-01

    The unique architecture of neurons requires the establishment and maintenance of polarity, which relies in part on microtubule-based kinesin motor transport to deliver essential cargo into axons and dendrites. In developing neurons, kinesin trafficking is essential for delivering organelles and molecules that are crucial for elongation and guidance of the growing axonal and dendritic termini. In mature neurons, kinesin cargo delivery is essential for neuron dynamic physiological functions which are critical in brain development. In this work, we followed Spatial (Tbata) gene expression during primary hippocampal neuron development and showed that it is highly expressed during dendrite formation. Spatial protein exhibits a somatodendritic distribution and we show that the kinesin motor Kif17, among other dendrite specific kinesins, is crucial for Spatial localization to dendrites of hippocampal neurons. Furthermore, Spatial down regulation in primary hippocampal cells revealed a role for Spatial in maintaining neurons' polarity by ensuring proper neurite outgrowth. This polarity is specified by intrinsic and extracellular signals that allow neurons to determine axon and dendrite fate during development. Neurotrophic factors, such as the Nerve Growth Factor (NGF), are candidate extracellular polarity-regulating cues which are proposed to accelerate neuronal polarization by enhancing dendrite growth. Here, we show that NGF treatment increases Spatial expression in hippocampal neurons. Altogether, these data suggest that Spatial, in response to NGF and through its transport by Kif17, is crucial for neuronal polarization and can be a key regulator of neurite outgrowth.

  1. Experimental strategy to identify genes susceptible to oxidative stress in nigral dopaminergic neurons.

    PubMed

    Yoo, Myung S; Kawamata, Hibiki; Kim, Dae J; Chun, Hong S; Son, Jin H

    2004-06-01

    Neuropathological evidence from both human and experimental models of Parkinson's disease (PD) firmly supports a significant role for oxidative stress (OS) in the death of dopaminergic (DA) neurons in substantia nigra. Largely unknown are the genes underlying selective susceptibility of nigral DA neuron to OS and how they effect nigral DA cell death. The major barriers to high-throughput identification of candidate genes are the paucity of nigral DA neurons as well as the dilution effect of non-DA cells both in primary cultures and brain tissues. To overcome these barriers, we have developed a DA cell line model, SN4741, appropriate for cDNA microarray analysis. Candidate genes were selected from both the microarray analysis and the molecular implication of their pathological mechanisms (i.e., decreased mitochondrial complex I activity and proteasomal dysfunction) of PD. Subsequent secondary validation tests were devised to characterize genes including clone #45 that may underlie selective vulnerability of nigral DA neuron to OS.

  2. Transcriptional activity of novel ALDH1L1 promoters in the rat brain following AAV vector-mediated gene transfer

    PubMed Central

    Mudannayake, Janitha M; Mouravlev, Alexandre; Fong, Dahna M; Young, Deborah

    2016-01-01

    Aldehyde dehydrogenase family 1, member L1 (ALDH1L1) is a recently characterized pan-astrocytic marker that is more homogenously expressed throughout the brain than the classic astrocytic marker, glial fibrillary acidic protein. We generated putative promoter sequence variants of the rat ALDH1L1 gene for use in adeno-associated viral vector-mediated gene transfer, with an aim to achieve selective regulation of transgene expression in astrocytes in the rat brain. Unexpectedly, ALDH1L1 promoter variants mediated transcriptional activity exclusively in neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta as assessed by luciferase reporter expression at 3 weeks postvector infusion. This selectivity for neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta also persisted in the context of adeno-associated viral serotype 5, 8 or 9 vector-mediated gene delivery. An in vivo promoter comparison showed the highest performing ALDH1L1 promoter variant mediated higher transgene expression than the neuronal-specific synapsin 1 and tyrosine hydroxylase promoters. The ALDH1L1 promoter was also transcriptionally active in dentate granule neurons following intrahippocampal adeno-associated viral vector infusion, whereas transgene expression was detected in both striatal neurons and astrocytes following vector infusion into the striatum. Our results demonstrate the potential suitability of the ALDH1L1 promoter as a new tool in the development of gene therapy and disease modelling applications. PMID:27990448

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

    PubMed Central

    Katz, Laura A.

    2015-01-01

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

  4. Favorable effects of VEGF gene transfer on a rat model of Parkinson disease using adeno-associated viral vectors.

    PubMed

    Tian, You-yong; Tang, Cui-Ju; Wang, Jia-ning; Feng, Yuan; Chen, Xiao-wu; Wang, Lan; Qiao, Xian; Sun, Sheng-gang

    2007-06-29

    Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is a specific angiogenic peptide, which has been identified to play a critical role in neurodegeneration, and has beneficial effects on neurons. In this study, we investigated whether neurodegeneration in a rat model of Parkinson disease could be prevented by VEGF gene transfer mediated by adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors. Our results demonstrated that a single injection of a VEGF-expressing AAV vector into striatum improved the rotational behavior of rat Parkinson disease models, and promoted the survival of dopaminergic neurons and fibers. Meanwhile, AAV-VEGF injection significantly increased the reactive astrocytes and the levels of glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor in striatum, but did not induce extra angiogenesis and remarkable disorder of blood-brain barrier. We thus conclude that intrastriatal delivery of VEGF gene mediated by AAV has favorable effects on the dopaminergic neurons in a rat Parkinson disease model.

  5. Optimization of Tet1 ligand density in HPMA-co-oligolysine copolymers for targeted neuronal gene delivery

    PubMed Central

    Chu, David S.H.; Schellinger, Joan G.; Bocek, Michael J.; Johnson, Russell N.; Pun, Suzie H.

    2013-01-01

    Targeted gene delivery vectors can enhance cellular specificity and transfection efficiency. We demonstrated previously that conjugation of Tet1, a peptide that binds to the GT1b ganglioside, to polyethylenimine results in preferential transfection of neural progenitor cells in vivo. In this work, we investigate the effect of Tet1 ligand density on gene delivery to neuron-like, differentiated PC-12 cells. A series of statistical, cationic peptide-based polymers containing various amounts (1—5 mol%) of Tet1 were synthesized via one-pot reversible addition-fragmentation chain transfer (RAFT) polymerization by copolymerization of Tet1 and oligo-l-lysine macromonomers with N-(2-hydroxypropyl)methacrylamide (HPMA). When complexed with plasmid DNA, the resulting panel of Tet1-functionalized polymers formed particles with similar particle size as particles formed with untargeted HPMA–oligolysine copolymers. The highest cellular uptake in neuron-like differentiated PC-12 cells was observed using polymers with intermediate Tet1 peptide incorporation. Compared to untargeted polymers, polymers with optimal incorporation of Tet1 increased gene delivery to neuron-like PC-12 cells by over an order of magnitude but had no effect compared to control polymers in transfecting NIH/3T3 control cells. PMID:24041424

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-07-01

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

  7. Diversification of C. elegans Motor Neuron Identity via Selective Effector Gene Repression.

    PubMed

    Kerk, Sze Yen; Kratsios, Paschalis; Hart, Michael; Mourao, Romulo; Hobert, Oliver

    2017-01-04

    A common organizational feature of nervous systems is the existence of groups of neurons that share common traits but can be divided into individual subtypes based on anatomical or molecular features. We elucidate the mechanistic basis of neuronal diversification processes in the context of C.elegans ventral cord motor neurons that share common traits that are directly activated by the terminal selector UNC-3. Diversification of motor neurons into different classes, each characterized by unique patterns of effector gene expression, is controlled by distinct combinations of phylogenetically conserved, class-specific transcriptional repressors. These repressors are continuously required in postmitotic neurons to prevent UNC-3, which is active in all neuron classes, from activating class-specific effector genes in specific motor neuron subsets via discrete cis-regulatory elements. The strategy of antagonizing the activity of broadly acting terminal selectors of neuron identity in a subtype-specific fashion may constitute a general principle of neuron subtype diversification.

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

    PubMed

    Argüelles, Carlos Francisco; Hernández-Zamora, Edgar

    2007-01-01

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

  9. CTCF is required for neural development and stochastic expression of clustered Pcdh genes in neurons.

    PubMed

    Hirayama, Teruyoshi; Tarusawa, Etsuko; Yoshimura, Yumiko; Galjart, Niels; Yagi, Takeshi

    2012-08-30

    The CCCTC-binding factor (CTCF) is a key molecule for chromatin conformational changes that promote cellular diversity, but nothing is known about its role in neurons. Here, we produced mice with a conditional knockout (cKO) of CTCF in postmitotic projection neurons, mostly in the dorsal telencephalon. The CTCF-cKO mice exhibited postnatal growth retardation and abnormal behavior and had defects in functional somatosensory mapping in the brain. In terms of gene expression, 390 transcripts were expressed at significantly different levels between CTCF-deficient and control cortex and hippocampus. In particular, the levels of 53 isoforms of the clustered protocadherin (Pcdh) genes, which are stochastically expressed in each neuron, declined markedly. Each CTCF-deficient neuron showed defects in dendritic arborization and spine density during brain development. Their excitatory postsynaptic currents showed normal amplitude but occurred with low frequency. Our results indicate that CTCF regulates functional neural development and neuronal diversity by controlling clustered Pcdh expression.

  10. Muscle-Derived GDNF: A Gene Therapeutic Approach for Preserving Motor Neuron Function in ALS

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-08-01

    AWARD NUMBER: W81XWH-14-1-0189 TITLE: Muscle-Derived GDNF: A Gene Therapeutic Approach for Preserving Motor Neuron Function in ALS PRINCIPAL...NUMBER W81XWH-14-1-0189 Muscle-Derived GDNF: A Gene Therapeutic Approach for Preserving Motor Neuron Function in ALS 5b. GRANT NUMBER 5c. PROGRAM...production in muscles. Hypothesis: Intramuscular AAV5-GDNF injection will ameliorate motor neuron function in the SOD1G93A rat model of ALS. Objectives

  11. Antibacterial gene transfer across the tree of life

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  12. Non-viral gene therapy that targets motor neurons in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Rogers, Mary-Louise; Smith, Kevin S.; Matusica, Dusan; Fenech, Matthew; Hoffman, Lee; Rush, Robert A.; Voelcker, Nicolas H.

    2014-01-01

    A major challenge in neurological gene therapy is safe delivery of transgenes to sufficient cell numbers from the circulation or periphery. This is particularly difficult for diseases involving spinal cord motor neurons such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). We have examined the feasibility of non-viral gene delivery to spinal motor neurons from intraperitoneal injections of plasmids carried by “immunogene” nanoparticles targeted for axonal retrograde transport using antibodies. PEGylated polyethylenimine (PEI-PEG12) as DNA carrier was conjugated to an antibody (MLR2) to the neurotrophin receptor p75 (p75NTR). We used a plasmid (pVIVO2) designed for in vivo gene delivery that produces minimal immune responses, has improved nuclear entry into post mitotic cells and also expresses green fluorescent protein (GFP). MLR2-PEI-PEG12 carried pVIVO2 and was specific for mouse motor neurons in mixed cultures containing astrocytes. While only 8% of motor neurons expressed GFP 72 h post transfection in vitro, when the immunogene was given intraperitonealy to neonatal C57BL/6J mice, GFP specific motor neuron expression was observed in 25.4% of lumbar, 18.3% of thoracic and 17.0% of cervical motor neurons, 72 h post transfection. PEI-PEG12 carrying pVIVO2 by itself did not transfect motor neurons in vivo, demonstrating the need for specificity via the p75NTR antibody MLR2. This is the first time that specific transfection of spinal motor neurons has been achieved from peripheral delivery of plasmid DNA as part of a non-viral gene delivery agent. These results stress the specificity and feasibility of immunogene delivery targeted for p75NTR expressing motor neurons, but suggests that further improvements are required to increase the transfection efficiency of motor neurons in vivo. PMID:25352776

  13. Parkinson's disease candidate gene prioritization based on expression profile of midbrain dopaminergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Parkinson's disease is the second most common neurodegenerative disorder. The pathological hallmark of the disease is degeneration of midbrain dopaminergic neurons. Genetic association studies have linked 13 human chromosomal loci to Parkinson's disease. Identification of gene(s), as part of the etiology of Parkinson's disease, within the large number of genes residing in these loci can be achieved through several approaches, including screening methods, and considering appropriate criteria. Since several of the indentified Parkinson's disease genes are expressed in substantia nigra pars compact of the midbrain, expression within the neurons of this area could be a suitable criterion to limit the number of candidates and identify PD genes. Methods In this work we have used the combination of findings from six rodent transcriptome analysis studies on the gene expression profile of midbrain dopaminergic neurons and the PARK loci in OMIM (Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man) database, to identify new candidate genes for Parkinson's disease. Results Merging the two datasets, we identified 20 genes within PARK loci, 7 of which are located in an orphan Parkinson's disease locus and one, which had been identified as a disease gene. In addition to identifying a set of candidates for further genetic association studies, these results show that the criteria of expression in midbrain dopaminergic neurons may be used to narrow down the number of genes in PARK loci for such studies. PMID:20716345

  14. The effects of spontaneous activity, background noise, and the stimulus ensemble on information transfer in neurons.

    PubMed

    Chacron, Maurice J; Longtin, André; Maler, Leonard

    2003-11-01

    trial-to-trial variability of the neural response to repeated presentations of a stimulus. However, the same background noise can also increase the variability of the spike train and hence can lead to increased information transfer in the presence of background noise. Our study emphasizes how different assumptions can lead to different predictions for the information transmission of a neuron. Assumptions about the computations being performed by the system under study as well as the stimulus ensemble and background noise should therefore be carefully considered when applying information theory.

  15. Replacing and Additive Horizontal Gene Transfer in Streptococcus

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Huddleston, Jennifer R

    2014-01-01

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

  17. Cre-dependent selection yields AAV variants for widespread gene transfer to the adult brain.

    PubMed

    Deverman, Benjamin E; Pravdo, Piers L; Simpson, Bryan P; Kumar, Sripriya Ravindra; Chan, Ken Y; Banerjee, Abhik; Wu, Wei-Li; Yang, Bin; Huber, Nina; Pasca, Sergiu P; Gradinaru, Viviana

    2016-02-01

    Recombinant adeno-associated viruses (rAAVs) are commonly used vehicles for in vivo gene transfer. However, the tropism repertoire of naturally occurring AAVs is limited, prompting a search for novel AAV capsids with desired characteristics. Here we describe a capsid selection method, called Cre recombination-based AAV targeted evolution (CREATE), that enables the development of AAV capsids that more efficiently transduce defined Cre-expressing cell populations in vivo. We use CREATE to generate AAV variants that efficiently and widely transduce the adult mouse central nervous system (CNS) after intravenous injection. One variant, AAV-PHP.B, transfers genes throughout the CNS with an efficiency that is at least 40-fold greater than that of the current standard, AAV9 (refs. 14,15,16,17), and transduces the majority of astrocytes and neurons across multiple CNS regions. In vitro, it transduces human neurons and astrocytes more efficiently than does AAV9, demonstrating the potential of CREATE to produce customized AAV vectors for biomedical applications.

  18. Genes expressed in the brain define three distinct neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors.

    PubMed Central

    Nef, P; Oneyser, C; Alliod, C; Couturier, S; Ballivet, M

    1988-01-01

    Four genes encode the related protein subunits that assemble to form the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) at the motor endplate of vertebrates. We have isolated from the chicken genome four additional members of the same gene family whose protein products, termed alpha 2, alpha 3, alpha 4 and n alpha (non-alpha) probably define three distinct neuronal nAChR subtypes. The neuronal nAChR genes have identical structures consisting of six protein-coding exons and specify proteins that are best aligned with the chicken endplate alpha subunit, whose gene we have also characterized. mRNA transcripts encoding alpha 4 and n alpha are abundant in embryonic and in adult avian brain, whereas alpha 2 and alpha 3 transcripts are much scarcer. The same set of neuronal genes probably exists in all vertebrates since their counterparts have also been identified in the rat genome. Images PMID:3267226

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

    PubMed Central

    JACOBS, WILLIAM R.

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2017-02-16

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Jinling

    2013-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Huang, Jinling

    2013-10-01

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

  3. Gene co-regulation by Fezf2 selects neurotransmitter identity and connectivity of corticospinal neurons

    PubMed Central

    Lodato, Simona; Molyneaux, Bradley J; Zuccaro, Emanuela; Goff, Loyal A; Chen, Hsu-Hsin; Yuan, Wen; Meleski, Alyssa; Takahashi, Emi; Mahony, Shaun; Rinn, John L; Gifford, David K; Arlotta, Paola

    2014-01-01

    The neocortex contains an unparalleled diversity of neuronal subtypes, each defined by distinct traits that are developmentally acquired under the control of subtype-specific and pan-neuronal genes. The regulatory logic that orchestrates the expression of these unique combinations of genes is unknown for any class of cortical neuron. Here, we report that Fezf2 is a selector gene able to regulate the expression of gene sets that collectively define mouse corticospinal motor neurons (CSMN). We find that Fezf2 directly induces the glutamatergic identity of CSMN via activation of Vglut1 (Scl17a7) and inhibits a GABAergic fate by repressing transcription of Gad1. In addition, we identify the axon guidance receptor Ephb1 as a target of Fezf2 necessary to execute the ipsilateral extension of the corticospinal tract. Our data indicate that co-regulated expression of neuron subtype–specific and pan-neuronal gene batteries by a single transcription factor is one component of the regulatory logic responsible for the establishment of CSMN identity. PMID:24997765

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2010-01-01

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

  5. Antibiotics and gene transfer in swine gut bacteria

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

  6. Quasispecies theory for horizontal gene transfer and recombination

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2008-12-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2008-11-15

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

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

    PubMed

    Fournier, Greg

    2009-01-01

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

  9. Role of Immediate-Early Genes in Synaptic Plasticity and Neuronal Ensembles Underlying the Memory Trace

    PubMed Central

    Minatohara, Keiichiro; Akiyoshi, Mika; Okuno, Hiroyuki

    2016-01-01

    In the brain, neuronal gene expression is dynamically changed in response to neuronal activity. In particular, the expression of immediate-early genes (IEGs) such as egr-1, c-fos, and Arc is rapidly and selectively upregulated in subsets of neurons in specific brain regions associated with learning and memory formation. IEG expression has therefore been widely used as a molecular marker for neuronal populations that undergo plastic changes underlying formation of long-term memory. In recent years, optogenetic and pharmacogenetic studies of neurons expressing c-fos or Arc have revealed that, during learning, IEG-positive neurons encode and store information that is required for memory recall, suggesting that they may be involved in formation of the memory trace. However, despite accumulating evidence for the role of IEGs in synaptic plasticity, the molecular and cellular mechanisms associated with this process remain unclear. In this review, we first summarize recent literature concerning the role of IEG-expressing neuronal ensembles in organizing the memory trace. We then focus on the physiological significance of IEGs, especially Arc, in synaptic plasticity, and describe our hypotheses about the importance of Arc expression in various types of input-specific circuit reorganization. Finally, we offer perspectives on Arc function that would unveil the role of IEG-expressing neurons in the formation of memory traces in the hippocampus and other brain areas. PMID:26778955

  10. Evidence for evolutionary divergence of activity-dependent gene expression in developing neurons

    PubMed Central

    Qiu, Jing; McQueen, Jamie; Bilican, Bilada; Dando, Owen; Magnani, Dario; Punovuori, Karolina; Selvaraj, Bhuvaneish T; Livesey, Matthew; Haghi, Ghazal; Heron, Samuel; Burr, Karen; Patani, Rickie; Rajan, Rinku; Sheppard, Olivia; Kind, Peter C; Simpson, T Ian; Tybulewicz, Victor LJ; Wyllie, David JA; Fisher, Elizabeth MC; Lowell, Sally; Chandran, Siddharthan; Hardingham, Giles E

    2016-01-01

    Evolutionary differences in gene regulation between humans and lower mammalian experimental systems are incompletely understood, a potential translational obstacle that is challenging to surmount in neurons, where primary tissue availability is poor. Rodent-based studies show that activity-dependent transcriptional programs mediate myriad functions in neuronal development, but the extent of their conservation in human neurons is unknown. We compared activity-dependent transcriptional responses in developing human stem cell-derived cortical neurons with those induced in developing primary- or stem cell-derived mouse cortical neurons. While activity-dependent gene-responsiveness showed little dependence on developmental stage or origin (primary tissue vs. stem cell), notable species-dependent differences were observed. Moreover, differential species-specific gene ortholog regulation was recapitulated in aneuploid mouse neurons carrying human chromosome-21, implicating promoter/enhancer sequence divergence as a factor, including human-specific activity-responsive AP-1 sites. These findings support the use of human neuronal systems for probing transcriptional responses to physiological stimuli or indeed pharmaceutical agents. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.20337.001 PMID:27692071

  11. Genome-wide identification of neuronal activity-regulated genes in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Xiao; Rahman, Reazur; Guo, Fang; Rosbash, Michael

    2016-01-01

    Activity-regulated genes (ARGs) are important for neuronal functions like long-term memory and are well-characterized in mammals but poorly studied in other model organisms like Drosophila. Here we stimulated fly neurons with different paradigms and identified ARGs using high-throughput sequencing from brains as well as from sorted neurons: they included a narrow set of circadian neurons as well as dopaminergic neurons. Surprisingly, many ARGs are specific to the stimulation paradigm and very specific to neuron type. In addition and unlike mammalian immediate early genes (IEGs), fly ARGs do not have short gene lengths and are less enriched for transcription factor function. Chromatin assays using ATAC-sequencing show that the transcription start sites (TSS) of ARGs do not change with neural firing but are already accessible prior to stimulation. Lastly based on binding site enrichment in ARGs, we identified transcription factor mediators of firing and created neuronal activity reporters. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.19942.001 PMID:27936378

  12. Gene expression of muscular and neuronal pathways is cooperatively dysregulated in patients with idiopathic achalasia

    PubMed Central

    Palmieri, Orazio; Mazza, Tommaso; Merla, Antonio; Fusilli, Caterina; Cuttitta, Antonello; Martino, Giuseppina; Latiano, Tiziana; Corritore, Giuseppe; Bossa, Fabrizio; Palumbo, Orazio; Muscarella, Lucia Anna; Carella, Massimo; Graziano, Paolo; Andriulli, Angelo; Latiano, Anna

    2016-01-01

    Idiopathic achalasia is characterized by the absence of peristalsis secondary to loss of neurons in the myenteric plexus that hampers proper relaxation of the lower esophageal sphincter. Achalasia can be considered a multifactorial disorder as it occurs in related individuals and is associated with HLA class II genes, thereby suggesting genetic influence. We used microarray technology and advanced in-silico functional analyses to perform the first genome-wide expression profiling of mRNA in tissue samples from 12 achalasia and 5 control patients. It revealed 1,728 differentially expressed genes, of these, 837 (48.4%) were up-regulated in cases. In particular, genes participating to the smooth muscle contraction biological function were mostly up-regulated. Functional analysis revealed a significant enrichment of neuronal/muscular and neuronal/immunity processes. Upstream regulatory analysis of 180 genes involved in these processes suggested TLR4 and IL18 as critical key-players. Two functional gene networks were significantly over-represented: one involved in organ morphology, skeletal muscle system development and function, and neurological diseases, and the other participating in cell morphology, humoral immune response and cellular movement. These results highlight on pivotal genes that may play critical roles in neuronal/muscular and neuronal/immunity processes, and that may contribute to the onset and development of achalasia. PMID:27511445

  13. Biased gene transfer mimics patterns created through shared ancestry

    PubMed Central

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

    2010-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2010-06-08

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

  15. Using expression profiles of Caenorhabditis elegans neurons to identify genes that mediate synaptic connectivity.

    PubMed

    Baruch, Leehod; Itzkovitz, Shalev; Golan-Mashiach, Michal; Shapiro, Ehud; Segal, Eran

    2008-07-11

    Synaptic wiring of neurons in Caenorhabditis elegans is largely invariable between animals. It has been suggested that this feature stems from genetically encoded molecular markers that guide the neurons in the final stage of synaptic formation. Identifying these markers and unraveling the logic by which they direct synapse formation is a key challenge. Here, we address this task by constructing a probabilistic model that attempts to explain the neuronal connectivity diagram of C. elegans as a function of the expression patterns of its neurons. By only considering neuron pairs that are known to be connected by chemical or electrical synapses, we focus on the final stage of synapse formation, in which neurons identify their designated partners. Our results show that for many neurons the neuronal expression map of C. elegans can be used to accurately predict the subset of adjacent neurons that will be chosen as its postsynaptic partners. Notably, these predictions can be achieved using the expression patterns of only a small number of specific genes that interact in a combinatorial fashion.

  16. Using Expression Profiles of Caenorhabditis elegans Neurons To Identify Genes That Mediate Synaptic Connectivity

    PubMed Central

    Baruch, Leehod; Itzkovitz, Shalev; Golan-Mashiach, Michal; Shapiro, Ehud; Segal, Eran

    2008-01-01

    Synaptic wiring of neurons in Caenorhabditis elegans is largely invariable between animals. It has been suggested that this feature stems from genetically encoded molecular markers that guide the neurons in the final stage of synaptic formation. Identifying these markers and unraveling the logic by which they direct synapse formation is a key challenge. Here, we address this task by constructing a probabilistic model that attempts to explain the neuronal connectivity diagram of C. elegans as a function of the expression patterns of its neurons. By only considering neuron pairs that are known to be connected by chemical or electrical synapses, we focus on the final stage of synapse formation, in which neurons identify their designated partners. Our results show that for many neurons the neuronal expression map of C. elegans can be used to accurately predict the subset of adjacent neurons that will be chosen as its postsynaptic partners. Notably, these predictions can be achieved using the expression patterns of only a small number of specific genes that interact in a combinatorial fashion. PMID:18711638

  17. Progranulin gene delivery protects dopaminergic neurons in a mouse model of Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Van Kampen, Jackalina M; Baranowski, David; Kay, Denis G

    2014-01-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder characterized by tremor, rigidity and akinesia/bradykinesia resulting from the progressive loss of nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons. To date, only symptomatic treatment is available for PD patients, with no effective means of slowing or stopping the progression of the disease. Progranulin (PGRN) is a 593 amino acid multifunction protein that is widely distributed throughout the CNS, localized primarily in neurons and microglia. PGRN has been demonstrated to be a potent regulator of neuroinflammation and also acts as an autocrine neurotrophic factor, important for long-term neuronal survival. Thus, enhancing PGRN expression may strengthen the cells resistance to disease. In the present study, we have used the 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) model of PD to investigate the possible use of PGRN gene delivery as a therapy for the prevention or treatment of PD. Viral vector delivery of the PGRN gene was an effective means of elevating PGRN expression in nigrostriatal neurons. When PGRN expression was elevated in the SNC, nigrostriatal neurons were protected from MPTP toxicity in mice, along with a preservation of striatal dopamine content and turnover. Further, protection of nigrostriatal neurons by PGRN gene therapy was accompanied by reductions in markers of MPTP-induced inflammation and apoptosis as well as a complete preservation of locomotor function. We conclude that PGRN gene therapy may have beneficial effects in the treatment of PD.

  18. Expression of the KAL gene in multiple neuronal sites during chicken development.

    PubMed Central

    Legouis, R; Lievre, C A; Leibovici, M; Lapointe, F; Petit, C

    1993-01-01

    The human KAL gene is responsible for the X chromosome-linked Kallmann syndrome. A partial cDNA sequence from the chicken KAL homologue was determined and used to study expression of the KAL gene, by in situ hybridization, during chicken development, from day 6 of incubation. The KAL gene is mainly expressed in neurons of the central nervous system during the second half of embryonic life. High levels of transcript were detected in mitral neurons of the olfactory bulbs, in striatal neurons, in Purkinje cells of the cerebellum, in retinal neurons, and in isolated neurons of the brainstem and spinal cord. No expression was observed in glial cells. A low level of expression was observed in some mesenchymal derivatives. In the adult, expression is maintained or increased in several neuronal populations, especially in optic tectum and striatum. A possible role for the KAL protein in synaptogenesis at these stages is discussed. These results in the chicken embryo help to elucidate the mechanisms of anosmia and gonadotropin-releasing hormone deficiency, which define Kallmann syndrome. In addition, most of the occasional symptoms described in Kallmann syndrome patients, such as cerebellar ataxia, abnormal ocular movements, abnormal spatial visual attention, mirror movements, and renal aplasia, could be ascribed to malfunction of areas that, in the chicken, express the KAL gene. Images Fig. 2 Fig. 3 Fig. 4 Fig. 5 PMID:8460158

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-02-01

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

  20. Rescuing the Failing Heart by Targeted Gene Transfer

    PubMed Central

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

    2011-01-01

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

  1. Expression of the ghrelin receptor gene in neurons of the medulla oblongata of the rat.

    PubMed

    Bron, Romke; Yin, Lei; Russo, Domenico; Furness, John B

    2013-08-15

    There is ambiguity concerning the distribution of neurons that express the ghrelin receptor (GHSR) in the medulla oblongata. In the current study we used a sensitive nonradioactive method to investigate GHSR mRNA distribution by in situ hybridization. Strong expression of the GHSR gene was confirmed in neurons of the facial nucleus (FacN, 7), the dorsal vagal complex (DVC), and the semicompact (but not compact) nucleus ambiguus (AmbSC and AmbC). In addition, expression of GHSR was found in other regions, where it had not been described before. GHSR-positive neurons were observed in the gustatory rostral nucleus tractus solitarius and in areas involved in vestibulo-ocular processing (such as the medial vestibular nucleus and the nucleus abducens). GHSR expression was also noted in ventral areas associated with cardiorespiratory control, including the gigantocellular reticular nucleus, the lateral paragigantocellular nucleus, the rostral and caudal ventrolateral medulla, the (pre)-Bötzinger complex, and the rostral and caudal ventrolateral respiratory group. However, GHSR-positive neurons in ventrolateral areas did not express markers for cardiovascular presympathetic vasomotor neurons, respiratory propriobulbar rhythmogenic neurons, or sensory interneurons. GHSR-positive cells were intermingled with catecholamine neurons in the dorsal vagal complex but these populations did not overlap. Thus, the ghrelin receptor occurs in the medulla oblongata in 1) second-order sensory neurons processing gustatory, vestibulo-ocular, and visceral sensation; 2) cholinergic somatomotor neurons of the FacN and autonomic preganglionic neurons of the DMNX and AmbSC; 3) cardiovascular neurons in the DVC, Gi, and LPGi; 4) neurons of as yet unknown function in the ventrolateral medulla.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-08-18

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  4. Gene expression and IG-DMR hypomethylation of maternally expressed gene 3 in developing corticospinal neurons.

    PubMed

    Qu, Chunsheng; Jiang, Tian; Li, Yong; Wang, Xiongwei; Cao, Huateng; Xu, Hongping; Qu, Jia; Chen, Jie-Guang

    2013-01-01

    The mammalian cerebral cortex plays a central role in higher cognitive functions and in the complex task of motor control. Maternally expressed gene 3 (Meg3) appears to play a role in cortical development and neurodegeneration, but the expression and regulation of Meg3 in the cortex is not clear. In this study, we examined the expression of transcript variants of Meg3 in the developing mouse cerebral cortex. By in situ hybridization, we found that a novel transcript variant of Meg3 with 8 small exons was expressed in the developing cortex, whereas the long isoforms of Meg3 (~11 kb) were enriched in corticospinal neurons (CSNs) in layer V of the cortex. No transcript variants of Meg3 were found in the neural progenitors at E12.5, when the intergenic differential methylation region (IG-DMR) near Meg3 was highly methylated. IG-DMR became demethylated at E15.5 and remained hypomethylated in early CSNs isolated from Fezf2-EGFP transgenic mice. The expression of Meg3 transcript variant 1 was inversely correlated with the IG-DMR methylation level during development. Moreover, expression of paternally expressed gene Peg11 was limited to the upper layers, consistent with the idea that the maternally expressed gene may be preferentially transcribed in the lower layers of the cortex. The spatiotemporal expression pattern of Meg3 suggests that it may participate in the early development of CSNs and contribute to cortical malfunctions related to aberrant imprinting in Meg3.

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

    PubMed

    Gillings, Michael R

    2017-02-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2017-03-20

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2017-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2008-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-03-01

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

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1990-01-01

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

  11. Topoisomerase 1 Regulates Gene Expression in Neurons through Cleavage Complex-Dependent and -Independent Mechanisms

    PubMed Central

    Mabb, Angela M.; Simon, Jeremy M.; King, Ian F.; Lee, Hyeong-Min; An, Lin-Kun; Philpot, Benjamin D.; Zylka, Mark J.

    2016-01-01

    Topoisomerase 1 (TOP1) inhibitors, including camptothecin and topotecan, covalently trap TOP1 on DNA, creating cleavage complexes (cc’s) that must be resolved before gene transcription and DNA replication can proceed. We previously found that topotecan reduces the expression of long (>100 kb) genes and unsilences the paternal allele of Ube3a in neurons. Here, we sought to evaluate overlap between TOP1cc-dependent and -independent gene regulation in neurons. To do this, we utilized Top1 conditional knockout mice, Top1 knockdown, the CRISPR-Cas9 system to delete Top1, TOP1 catalytic inhibitors that do not generate TOP1cc’s, and a TOP1 mutation (T718A) that stabilizes TOP1cc’s. We found that topotecan treatment significantly alters the expression of many more genes, including long neuronal genes, immediate early genes, and paternal Ube3a, when compared to Top1 deletion. Our data show that topotecan has a stronger effect on neuronal transcription than Top1 deletion, and identifies TOP1cc-dependent and -independent contributions to gene expression. PMID:27231886

  12. The multiple sclerosis drug fingolimod (FTY720) stimulates neuronal gene expression, axonal growth and regeneration.

    PubMed

    Anastasiadou, Sofia; Knöll, Bernd

    2016-05-01

    Fingolimod (FTY720) is a new generation oral treatment for multiple sclerosis (MS). So far, FTY720 was mainly considered to target trafficking of immune cells but not brain cells such as neurons. Herein, we analyzed FTY720's potential to directly alter neuronal function. In CNS neurons, we identified a FTY720 governed gene expression response. FTY720 upregulated immediate early genes (IEGs) encoding for neuronal activity associated transcription factors such as c-Fos, FosB, Egr1 and Egr2 and induced actin cytoskeleton associated genes (actin isoforms, tropomyosin, calponin). Stimulation of primary neurons with FTY720 enhanced neurite growth and altered growth cone morphology. In accordance, FTY720 enhanced axon regeneration in mice upon facial nerve axotomy. We identified components of a FTY720 engaged signaling cascade including S1P receptors, G12/13G-proteins, RhoA-GTPases and the transcription factors SRF/MRTF. In summary, we uncovered a broader cellular and therapeutic operation mode of FTY720, suggesting beneficial FTY720 effects also on CNS neurons during MS therapy and for treatment of other neurodegenerative diseases requiring neuroprotective and neurorestorative processes.

  13. Development and morphology of the clock-gene-expressing lateral neurons of Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Helfrich-Förster, Charlotte; Shafer, Orie T; Wülbeck, Corinna; Grieshaber, Eva; Rieger, Dirk; Taghert, Paul

    2007-01-01

    The clock-gene-expressing lateral neurons are essential for the locomotor activity rhythm of Drosophila melanogaster. Traditionally, these neurons are divided into three groups: the dorsal lateral neurons (LN(d)), the large ventral lateral neurons (l-LN(v)), and the small ventral lateral neurons (s-LN(v)), whereby the latter group consists of four neurons that express the neuropeptide pigment-dispersing factor (PDF) and a fifth PDF-negative neuron. So far, only the l-LN(v) and the PDF-positive s-LN(v) have been shown to project into the accessory medulla, a small neuropil that contains the circadian pacemaker center in several insects. We show here that the other lateral neurons also arborize in the accessory medulla, predominantly forming postsynaptic sites. Both the l-LN(v) and LN(d) are anatomically well suited to connect the accessory medullae. Whereas the l-LN(v) may receive ipsilateral photic input from the Hofbauer-Buchner eyelet, the LN(d) invade mainly the contralateral accessory medulla and thus may receive photic input from the contralateral side. Both the LN(d) and the l-LN(v) differentiate during midmetamorphosis. They do so in close proximity to one another and the fifth PDF-negative s-LN(v), suggesting that these cell groups may derive from common precursors.

  14. A short upstream promoter region mediates transcriptional regulation of the mouse doublecortin gene in differentiating neurons

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Doublecortin (Dcx), a MAP (Microtubule-Associated Protein), is transiently expressed in migrating and differentiating neurons and thereby characterizes neuronal precursors and neurogenesis in developing and adult neurogenesis. In addition, reduced Dcx expression during development has been related to appearance of brain pathologies. Here, we attempt to unveil the molecular mechanisms controlling Dcx gene expression by studying its transcriptional regulation during neuronal differentiation. Results To determine and analyze important regulatory sequences of the Dcx promoter, we studied a putative regulatory region upstream from the mouse Dcx coding region (pdcx2kb) and several deletions thereof. These different fragments were used in vitro and in vivo to drive reporter gene expression. We demonstrated, using transient expression experiments, that pdcx2kb is sufficient to control specific reporter gene expression in cerebellar cells and in the developing brain (E14.5). We determined the temporal profile of Dcx promoter activity during neuronal differentiation of mouse embryonic stem cells (mESC) and found that transcriptional activation of the Dcx gene varies along with neuronal differentiation of mESC. Deletion experiments and sequence comparison of Dcx promoters across rodents, human and chicken revealed the importance of a highly conserved sequence in the proximal region of the promoter required for specific and strong expression in neuronal precursors and young neuronal cells. Further analyses revealed the presence in this short sequence of several conserved, putative transcription factor binding sites: LEF/TCF (Lymphoid Enhancer Factor/T-Cell Factor) which are effectors of the canonical Wnt pathway; HNF6/OC2 (Hepatocyte Nuclear Factor-6/Oncecut-2) members of the ONECUT family and NF-Y/CAAT (Nuclear Factor-Y). Conclusions Studies of Dcx gene regulatory sequences using native, deleted and mutated constructs suggest that fragments located upstream of the

  15. Characterization of an Ancient Lepidopteran Lateral Gene Transfer

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2005-11-07

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2005-01-01

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

  18. The core clock gene Per1 phases molecular and electrical circadian rhythms in SCN neurons

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Jeff R.

    2016-01-01

    The brain’s biological clock, the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN), exhibits endogenous 24-hour rhythms in gene expression and spontaneous firing rate; however, the functional relationship between these neuronal rhythms is not fully understood. Here, we used a Per1::GFP transgenic mouse line that allows for the simultaneous quantification of molecular clock state and firing rate in SCN neurons to examine the relationship between these key components of the circadian clock. We find that there is a stable, phased relationship between E-box-driven clock gene expression and spontaneous firing rate in SCN neurons and that these relationships are independent of light input onto the system or of GABAA receptor-mediated synaptic activity. Importantly, the concordant phasing of gene and neural rhythms is disrupted in the absence of the homologous clock gene Per1, but persists in the absence of the core clock gene Per2. These results suggest that Per1 plays a unique, non-redundant role in phasing gene expression and firing rate rhythms in SCN neurons to increase the robustness of cellular timekeeping. PMID:27602274

  19. Replication-dependent histone genes are actively transcribed in differentiating and aging retinal neurons.

    PubMed

    Banday, Abdul Rouf; Baumgartner, Marybeth; Al Seesi, Sahar; Karunakaran, Devi Krishna Priya; Venkatesh, Aditya; Congdon, Sean; Lemoine, Christopher; Kilcollins, Ashley M; Mandoiu, Ion; Punzo, Claudio; Kanadia, Rahul N

    2014-01-01

    In the mammalian genome, each histone family contains multiple replication-dependent paralogs, which are found in clusters where their transcription is thought to be coupled to the cell cycle. Here, we wanted to interrogate the transcriptional regulation of these paralogs during retinal development and aging. We employed deep sequencing, quantitative PCR, in situ hybridization (ISH), and microarray analysis, which revealed that replication-dependent histone genes were not only transcribed in progenitor cells but also in differentiating neurons. Specifically, by ISH analysis we found that different histone genes were actively transcribed in a subset of neurons between postnatal day 7 and 14. Interestingly, within a histone family, not all paralogs were transcribed at the same level during retinal development. For example, expression of Hist1h1b was higher embryonically, while that of Hist1h1c was higher postnatally. Finally, expression of replication-dependent histone genes was also observed in the aging retina. Moreover, transcription of replication-dependent histones was independent of rapamycin-mediated mTOR pathway inactivation. Overall, our data suggest the existence of variant nucleosomes produced by the differential expression of the replication-dependent histone genes across retinal development. Also, the expression of a subset of replication-dependent histone isotypes in senescent neurons warrants re-examining these genes as "replication-dependent." Thus, our findings underscore the importance of understanding the transcriptional regulation of replication-dependent histone genes in the maintenance and functioning of neurons.

  20. Identification of genes influencing dendrite morphogenesis in developing peripheral sensory and central motor neurons

    PubMed Central

    Ou, Yimiao; Chwalla, Barbara; Landgraf, Matthias; van Meyel, Donald J

    2008-01-01

    Background Developing neurons form dendritic trees with cell type-specific patterns of growth, branching and targeting. Dendrites of Drosophila peripheral sensory neurons have emerged as a premier genetic model, though the molecular mechanisms that underlie and regulate their morphogenesis remain incompletely understood. Still less is known about this process in central neurons and the extent to which central and peripheral dendrites share common organisational principles and molecular features. To address these issues, we have carried out two comparable gain-of-function screens for genes that influence dendrite morphologies in peripheral dendritic arborisation (da) neurons and central RP2 motor neurons. Results We found 35 unique loci that influenced da neuron dendrites, including five previously shown as required for da dendrite patterning. Several phenotypes were class-specific and many resembled those of known mutants, suggesting that genes identified in this study may converge with and extend known molecular pathways for dendrite development in da neurons. The second screen used a novel technique for cell-autonomous gene misexpression in RP2 motor neurons. We found 51 unique loci affecting RP2 dendrite morphology, 84% expressed in the central nervous system. The phenotypic classes from both screens demonstrate that gene misexpression can affect specific aspects of dendritic development, such as growth, branching and targeting. We demonstrate that these processes are genetically separable. Targeting phenotypes were specific to the RP2 screen, and we propose that dendrites in the central nervous system are targeted to territories defined by Cartesian co-ordinates along the antero-posterior and the medio-lateral axes of the central neuropile. Comparisons between the screens suggest that the dendrites of peripheral da and central RP2 neurons are shaped by regulatory programs that only partially overlap. We focused on one common candidate pathway controlled by the

  1. Transcriptional regulation of neuronal genes and its effect on neural functions: gene expression in response to static magnetism in cultured rat hippocampal neurons.

    PubMed

    Hirai, Takao; Yoneda, Yukio

    2005-07-01

    We have previously shown a marked but transient increase in DNA binding of the nuclear transcription factor activator protein-1 after brief exposure to static magnetic fields in cultured rat hippocampal neurons, suggesting that exposure to static magnetism would lead to long-term consolidation as well as amplification of different functional alterations through modulation of de novo protein synthesis at the level of gene transcription in the hippocampus. Hippocampal neurons were cultured under sustained exposure to static magnetic fields at 100 mT, followed by extraction of total RNA for differential display (DD) analysis using random primers. The first and the second DD polymerase chain reaction similarly showed the downregulation of particular genes in response to sustained magnetism. Nucleotide sequence analysis followed by BLASTN homology searching revealed high homology of these 2 DD-PCR products to the 3' non-coding regions of the mouse basic helix-loop-helix transcription factor ALF1 and that of histone H3.3A, respectively. On Northern blot analysis using the 2 cloned differentially expressed fragments labeled with [alpha-(32)P]dCTP by the random primer method, a marked decrease was seen in expression of mRNA for ALF1 and histone H3.3A in hippocampal neurons cultured under sustained exposure to static magnetic fields at 100 mT. It thus appears that static magnetism may modulate cellular integrity and functionality through expression of a variety of responsive genes required for gene transcription and translation, proliferation, differentiation, maturation, survival, and so on in cultured rat hippocampal neurons.

  2. Radioiodinated Capsids Facilitate In Vivo Non-Invasive Tracking of Adeno-Associated Gene Transfer Vectors

    PubMed Central

    Kothari, P.; De, B. P.; He, B.; Chen, A.; Chiuchiolo, M. J.; Kim, D.; Nikolopoulou, A.; Amor-Coarasa, A.; Dyke, J. P.; Voss, H. U.; Kaminsky, S. M.; Foley, C. P.; Vallabhajosula, S.; Hu, B.; DiMagno, S. G.; Sondhi, D.; Crystal, R. G.; Babich, J. W.; Ballon, D.

    2017-01-01

    Viral vector mediated gene therapy has become commonplace in clinical trials for a wide range of inherited disorders. Successful gene transfer depends on a number of factors, of which tissue tropism is among the most important. To date, definitive mapping of the spatial and temporal distribution of viral vectors in vivo has generally required postmortem examination of tissue. Here we present two methods for radiolabeling adeno-associated virus (AAV), one of the most commonly used viral vectors for gene therapy trials, and demonstrate their potential usefulness in the development of surrogate markers for vector delivery during the first week after administration. Specifically, we labeled adeno-associated virus serotype 10 expressing the coding sequences for the CLN2 gene implicated in late infantile neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis with iodine-124. Using direct (Iodogen) and indirect (modified Bolton-Hunter) methods, we observed the vector in the murine brain for up to one week using positron emission tomography. Capsid radioiodination of viral vectors enables non-invasive, whole body, in vivo evaluation of spatial and temporal vector distribution that should inform methods for efficacious gene therapy over a broad range of applications. PMID:28059103

  3. Risks from GMOs due to horizontal gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Keese, Paul

    2008-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

  5. Forebrain neuronal specific ablation of p53 gene provide protection in a cortical ischemic stroke model

    PubMed Central

    Filichia, Emily; Shen, Hui; Zhou, Xiaofei; Qi, Xin; Jin, Kevin; Greig, Nigel; Hoffer, Barry; Luo, Yu

    2016-01-01

    Cerebral ischemic injury involves death of multiple cell types at the ischemic sites. As a key regulator of cell death, the p53 gene has been implicated in the regulation of cell loss in stroke. Less focal damage is found in stroke animals pre-treated with a p53 inhibitor or in traditional p53 knockout (ko) mice. However, whether the p53 gene plays a direct role in regulating neuronal cell death is unknown. In this study, in contrast to the global inhibition of p53 function by pharmacological inhibitors and in traditional p53 ko mice, we utilized a neuronal specific conditional ko mouse line (CamcreTRP53 loxP/loxP) to achieve forebrain neuronal specific deletion of p53 and examined the role of the p53 gene in ischemia-induced cell death in neurons. Expression of p53 after stroke is examined using immunohistochemical method and outcome of stroke is examined by analysis of infarction size and behavioral deficits caused by stroke. Our data showed that p53 expression is upregulated in the ischemic region in neuronal cells in wildtype (wt) mice but not in CamcreTRP53 loxP/loxP ko mice. Deletion of the p53 gene in forebrain neurons results in a decreased infarction area in ko mice. Locomotor behavior, measured in automated activity chambers, showed that CamcreTRP53 loxP/loxP ko mice have less locomotor deficits compared to wt mice after MCAo. We conclude that manipulation of p53 expression in neurons may lead to unique therapeutic development in stroke. PMID:25779964

  6. Hippocampus neuronal metabolic gene expression outperforms whole tissue data in accurately predicting Alzheimer's disease progression.

    PubMed

    Stempler, Shiri; Waldman, Yedael Y; Wolf, Lior; Ruppin, Eytan

    2012-09-01

    Numerous metabolic alterations are associated with the impairment of brain cells in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Here we use gene expression microarrays of both whole hippocampus tissue and hippocampal neurons of AD patients to investigate the ability of metabolic gene expression to predict AD progression and its cognitive decline. We find that the prediction accuracy of different AD stages is markedly higher when using neuronal expression data (0.9) than when using whole tissue expression (0.76). Furthermore, the metabolic genes' expression is shown to be as effective in predicting AD severity as the entire gene list. Remarkably, a regression model from hippocampal metabolic gene expression leads to a marked correlation of 0.57 with the Mini-Mental State Examination cognitive score. Notably, the expression of top predictive neuronal genes in AD is significantly higher than that of other metabolic genes in the brains of healthy subjects. All together, the analyses point to a subset of metabolic genes that is strongly associated with normal brain functioning and whose disruption plays a major role in AD.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2006-01-01

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

  8. Dynamic monitoring of horizontal gene transfer in soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-12-01

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

  9. AAV Vector-Mediated Gene Delivery to Substantia Nigra Dopamine Neurons: Implications for Gene Therapy and Disease Models.

    PubMed

    Albert, Katrina; Voutilainen, Merja H; Domanskyi, Andrii; Airavaara, Mikko

    2017-02-08

    Gene delivery using adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors is a widely used method to transduce neurons in the brain, especially due to its safety, efficacy, and long-lasting expression. In addition, by varying AAV serotype, promotor, and titer, it is possible to affect the cell specificity of expression or the expression levels of the protein of interest. Dopamine neurons in the substantia nigra projecting to the striatum, comprising the nigrostriatal pathway, are involved in movement control and degenerate in Parkinson's disease. AAV-based gene targeting to the projection area of these neurons in the striatum has been studied extensively to induce the production of neurotrophic factors for disease-modifying therapies for Parkinson's disease. Much less emphasis has been put on AAV-based gene therapy targeting dopamine neurons in substantia nigra. We will review the literature related to targeting striatum and/or substantia nigra dopamine neurons using AAVs in order to express neuroprotective and neurorestorative molecules, as well as produce animal disease models of Parkinson's disease. We discuss difficulties in targeting substantia nigra dopamine neurons and their vulnerability to stress in general. Therefore, choosing a proper control for experimental work is not trivial. Since the axons along the nigrostriatal tract are the first to degenerate in Parkinson's disease, the location to deliver the therapy must be carefully considered. We also review studies using AAV-a-synuclein (a-syn) to target substantia nigra dopamine neurons to produce an α-syn overexpression disease model in rats. Though these studies are able to produce mild dopamine system degeneration in the striatum and substantia nigra and some behavioural effects, there are studies pointing to the toxicity of AAV-carrying green fluorescent protein (GFP), which is often used as a control. Therefore, we discuss the potential difficulties in overexpressing proteins in general in the substantia nigra.

  10. AAV Vector-Mediated Gene Delivery to Substantia Nigra Dopamine Neurons: Implications for Gene Therapy and Disease Models

    PubMed Central

    Albert, Katrina; Voutilainen, Merja H.; Domanskyi, Andrii; Airavaara, Mikko

    2017-01-01

    Gene delivery using adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors is a widely used method to transduce neurons in the brain, especially due to its safety, efficacy, and long-lasting expression. In addition, by varying AAV serotype, promotor, and titer, it is possible to affect the cell specificity of expression or the expression levels of the protein of interest. Dopamine neurons in the substantia nigra projecting to the striatum, comprising the nigrostriatal pathway, are involved in movement control and degenerate in Parkinson’s disease. AAV-based gene targeting to the projection area of these neurons in the striatum has been studied extensively to induce the production of neurotrophic factors for disease-modifying therapies for Parkinson’s disease. Much less emphasis has been put on AAV-based gene therapy targeting dopamine neurons in substantia nigra. We will review the literature related to targeting striatum and/or substantia nigra dopamine neurons using AAVs in order to express neuroprotective and neurorestorative molecules, as well as produce animal disease models of Parkinson’s disease. We discuss difficulties in targeting substantia nigra dopamine neurons and their vulnerability to stress in general. Therefore, choosing a proper control for experimental work is not trivial. Since the axons along the nigrostriatal tract are the first to degenerate in Parkinson’s disease, the location to deliver the therapy must be carefully considered. We also review studies using AAV-α-synuclein (α-syn) to target substantia nigra dopamine neurons to produce an α-syn overexpression disease model in rats. Though these studies are able to produce mild dopamine system degeneration in the striatum and substantia nigra and some behavioural effects, there are studies pointing to the toxicity of AAV-carrying green fluorescent protein (GFP), which is often used as a control. Therefore, we discuss the potential difficulties in overexpressing proteins in general in the substantia

  11. Aggregated Alpha-Synuclein Transfer Efficiently between Cultured Human Neuron-Like Cells and Localize to Lysosomes

    PubMed Central

    Severinsson, Emelie; Agholme, Lotta; Bergström, Joakim; Ingelsson, Martin

    2016-01-01

    Parkinson’s disease and other alpha-synucleinopathies are progressive neurodegenerative diseases characterized by aggregates of misfolded alpha-synuclein spreading throughout the brain. Recent evidence suggests that the pathological progression is likely due to neuron-to-neuron transfer of these aggregates between neuroanatomically connected areas of the brain. As the impact of this pathological spreading mechanism is currently debated, we aimed to investigate the transfer and subcellular location of alpha-synuclein species in a novel 3D co-culture human cell model based on highly differentiated SH-SY5Y cells. Fluorescently-labeled monomeric, oligomeric and fibrillar species of alpha-synuclein were introduced into a donor cell population and co-cultured with an EGFP-expressing acceptor-cell population of differentiated neuron-like cells. Subsequent transfer and colocalization of the different species were determined with confocal microscopy. We could confirm cell-to-cell transfer of all three alpha-synuclein species investigated. Interestingly the level of transferred oligomers and fibrils and oligomers were significantly higher than monomers, which could affect the probability of seeding and pathology in the recipient cells. Most alpha-synuclein colocalized with the lysosomal/endosomal system, both pre- and postsynaptically, suggesting its importance in the processing and spreading of alpha-synuclein. PMID:28030591

  12. Age-related gene expression changes in substantia nigra dopamine neurons of the rat.

    PubMed

    Parkinson, Gemma M; Dayas, Christopher V; Smith, Doug W

    2015-07-01

    Ageing affects most, if not all, functional systems in the body. For example, the somatic motor nervous system, responsible for initiating and regulating motor output to skeletal musculature, is vulnerable to ageing. The nigrostriatal dopamine pathway is one component of this system, with deficits in dopamine signalling contributing to major motor dysfunction, as exemplified in Parkinson's disease (PD). However, while the dopamine deficit in PD is due to degeneration of substantia nigra (SN) dopamine (DA) neurons, it is unclear whether there is sufficient loss of SN DA neurons with ageing to explain observed motor impairments. Instead, evidence suggests that age-related loss of DA neuron function may be more important than frank cell loss. To further elucidate the mechanisms of functional decline, we have investigated age-related changes in gene expression specifically in laser microdissected SN DA neurons. There were significant age-related changes in the expression of genes associated with neurotrophic factor signalling and the regulation of tyrosine hydroxylase activity. Furthermore, reduced expression of the DA neuron-associated transcription factor, Nurr1, may contribute to these changes. Together, these results suggest that altered neurotrophic signalling and tyrosine hydroxylase activity may contribute to altered DA neuron signalling and motor nervous system regulation in ageing.

  13. [Experimental approach to the gene therapy of motor neuron disease with the use of genes hypoxia-inducible factors].

    PubMed

    Ismailov, Sh M; Barykova, Iu A; Shmarov, M M; Tarantul, V Z; Barskov, I V; Kucherianu, V G; Brylev, L V; Logunov, D Iu; Tutykhina, I L; Bocharov, E V; Zakharova, M N; Naroditskiĭ, B S; Illarioshkin, S N

    2014-05-01

    Motor neuron disease (MND), or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, is a fatal neurodegenerative disorder characterized by a progressive loss of motor neurons in the spinal cord and the brain. Several angiogenic and neurogenic growth factors, such as the vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), angiogenin (ANG), insulin-like growth factor (IGF) and others, have been shown to promote survival of the spinal motor neurons during ischemia. We constructed recombinant vectors using human adenovirus 5 (Ad5) carrying the VEGF, ANG or IGF genes under the control of the cytomegalovirus promoter. As a model for MND, we employed a transgenic mice strain, B6SJL-Tg (SOD1*G93A)d11 Gur/J that develops a progressive degeneration of the spinal motor neurons caused by the expression of a mutated Cu/Zn superoxide dismutase gene SOD1. Delivery of the therapeutic genes to the spinal motor neurons was done using the effect of the retrograde axonal transport after multiple injections of the Ad5-VEGF, Ad5-ANG and Ad5-IGF vectors and their combinations into the limbs and back muscles of the SOD1(G93A) mice. Viral transgene expression in the spinal cord motor neurons was confirmed by immunocytochemistry and RT-RCR. We assessed the neurological status, motor activity and lifespan of experimental and control animal groups. We discovered that SOD1(G93A) mice injected with the Ad5-VEGF + Ad5-ANG combination showed a 2-3 week delay in manifestation of the disease, higher motor activity at the advanced stages of the disease, and at least a 10% increase in the lifespan compared to the control and other experimental groups. These results support the safety and therapeutic efficacy of the tested recombinant treatment. We propose that the developed experimental MND treatment based on viral delivery of VEGF + ANG can be used as a basis for gene therapy drug development and testing in the preclinical and clinical trials of the MND.

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-06-27

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  16. Adult rat bone marrow stromal cells express genes associated with dopamine neurons

    SciTech Connect

    Kramer, Brian C.; Woodbury, Dale . E-mail: WOODBURYDL@AOL.COM; Black, Ira B.

    2006-05-19

    An intensive search is underway to identify candidates to replace the cells that degenerate in Parkinson's disease (PD). To date, no suitable substitute has been found. We have recently found that adult rat bone marrow stromal cells (MSCs) can be induced to assume a neuronal phenotype in vitro. These findings may have particular relevance to the treatment of PD. We now report that adult MSCs express multiple dopaminergic genes, suggesting that they are potential candidates for cell therapy. Using RT-PCR, we have examined families of genes that are associated with the development and/or survival of dopaminergic neurons. MSCs transcribe a variety of dopaminergic genes including patched and smoothened (components of the Shh receptor), Gli-1 (downstream mediator of Shh), and Otx-1, a gene associated with formation of the mesencephalon during development. Furthermore, Shh treatment elicits a 1.5-fold increase in DNA synthesis in cultured MSCs, suggesting the presence of a functional Shh receptor complex. We have also found that MSCs transcribe and translate Nurr-1, a nuclear receptor essential for the development of dopamine neurons. In addition, MSCs express a variety of growth factor receptors including the glycosyl-phosphatidylinositol-anchored ligand-binding subunit of the GDNF receptor, GFR{alpha}1, as well as fibroblast growth factor receptors one and four. The expression of genes that are associated with the development and survival of dopamine neurons suggests a potential role for these cells in the treatment of Parkinson's disease.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    1995-02-01

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

  18. Familial Dysautonomia (FD) Human Embryonic Stem Cell Derived PNS Neurons Reveal that Synaptic Vesicular and Neuronal Transport Genes Are Directly or Indirectly Affected by IKBKAP Downregulation

    PubMed Central

    Kantor, Gal; Cheishvili, David; Even, Aviel; Birger, Anastasya; Turetsky, Tikva; Gil, Yaniv; Even-Ram, Sharona; Aizenman, Einat; Bashir, Nibal; Maayan, Channa; Razin, Aharon; Reubinoff, Benjamim E.; Weil, Miguel

    2015-01-01

    A splicing mutation in the IKBKAP gene causes Familial Dysautonomia (FD), affecting the IKAP protein expression levels and proper development and function of the peripheral nervous system (PNS). Here we found new molecular insights for the IKAP role and the impact of the FD mutation in the human PNS lineage by using a novel and unique human embryonic stem cell (hESC) line homozygous to the FD mutation originated by pre implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) analysis. We found that IKBKAP downregulation during PNS differentiation affects normal migration in FD-hESC derived neural crest cells (NCC) while at later stages the PNS neurons show reduced intracellular colocalization between vesicular proteins and IKAP. Comparative wide transcriptome analysis of FD and WT hESC-derived neurons together with the analysis of human brains from FD and WT 12 weeks old embryos and experimental validation of the results confirmed that synaptic vesicular and neuronal transport genes are directly or indirectly affected by IKBKAP downregulation in FD neurons. Moreover we show that kinetin (a drug that corrects IKBKAP alternative splicing) promotes the recovery of IKAP expression and these IKAP functional associated genes identified in the study. Altogether, these results support the view that IKAP might be a vesicular like protein that might be involved in neuronal transport in hESC derived PNS neurons. This function seems to be mostly affected in FD-hESC derived PNS neurons probably reflecting some PNS neuronal dysfunction observed in FD. PMID:26437462

  19. Familial Dysautonomia (FD) Human Embryonic Stem Cell Derived PNS Neurons Reveal that Synaptic Vesicular and Neuronal Transport Genes Are Directly or Indirectly Affected by IKBKAP Downregulation.

    PubMed

    Lefler, Sharon; Cohen, Malkiel A; Kantor, Gal; Cheishvili, David; Even, Aviel; Birger, Anastasya; Turetsky, Tikva; Gil, Yaniv; Even-Ram, Sharona; Aizenman, Einat; Bashir, Nibal; Maayan, Channa; Razin, Aharon; Reubinoff, Benjamim E; Weil, Miguel

    2015-01-01

    A splicing mutation in the IKBKAP gene causes Familial Dysautonomia (FD), affecting the IKAP protein expression levels and proper development and function of the peripheral nervous system (PNS). Here we found new molecular insights for the IKAP role and the impact of the FD mutation in the human PNS lineage by using a novel and unique human embryonic stem cell (hESC) line homozygous to the FD mutation originated by pre implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) analysis. We found that IKBKAP downregulation during PNS differentiation affects normal migration in FD-hESC derived neural crest cells (NCC) while at later stages the PNS neurons show reduced intracellular colocalization between vesicular proteins and IKAP. Comparative wide transcriptome analysis of FD and WT hESC-derived neurons together with the analysis of human brains from FD and WT 12 weeks old embryos and experimental validation of the results confirmed that synaptic vesicular and neuronal transport genes are directly or indirectly affected by IKBKAP downregulation in FD neurons. Moreover we show that kinetin (a drug that corrects IKBKAP alternative splicing) promotes the recovery of IKAP expression and these IKAP functional associated genes identified in the study. Altogether, these results support the view that IKAP might be a vesicular like protein that might be involved in neuronal transport in hESC derived PNS neurons. This function seems to be mostly affected in FD-hESC derived PNS neurons probably reflecting some PNS neuronal dysfunction observed in FD.

  20. Clathrin light chain B: gene structure and neuron-specific splicing.

    PubMed Central

    Stamm, S; Casper, D; Dinsmore, J; Kaufmann, C A; Brosius, J; Helfman, D M

    1992-01-01

    The clathrin light chains are components of clathrin coated vesicles, structural constituents involved in endocytosis and membrane recycling. The clathrin light chain B (LCB) gene encodes two isoforms, termed LCB2 and LCB3, via an alternative RNA splicing mechanism. We have determined the structure of the rat clathrin light chain B gene. The gene consists of six exons that extend over 11.9 kb. The first four exons and the last exon are common to the LCB2 and LCB3 isoforms. The fifth exon, termed EN, is included in the mRNA in brain, giving rise to the brain specific form LCB2 but is excluded in other tissues, generating the LCB3 isoform. Primary rat neuronal cell cultures express predominantly the brain specific LCB2 isoform, whereas primary rat cultures of glia express only the LCB3 isoform, suggesting that expression of the brain-specific LCB2 form is limited to neurons. Further evidence for neuronal localization of the LCB2 form is provided using a teratocarcinoma cell line, P19, which can be induced by retinoic acid to express a neuronal phenotype, concomitant with the induction of the LCB2 form. In order to determine the sequences involved in alternative splice site selection, we constructed a minigene containing the alternative spliced exon EN and its flanking intron and exon sequences. This minigene reflects the splicing pattern of the endogenous gene upon transfection in HeLa cell and primary neuronal cell cultures, indicating that this region of the LCB gene contains all the necessary information for neuron-specific splicing. Images PMID:1408826

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-04

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  3. Identification of Neuronal Enhancers of the Proopiomelanocortin Gene by Transgenic Mouse Analysis and Phylogenetic Footprinting

    PubMed Central

    de Souza, Flávio S. J.; Santangelo, Andrea M.; Bumaschny, Viviana; Avale, María Elena; Smart, James L.; Low, Malcolm J.; Rubinstein, Marcelo

    2005-01-01

    The proopiomelanocortin (POMC) gene is expressed in the pituitary and arcuate neurons of the hypothalamus. POMC arcuate neurons play a central role in the control of energy homeostasis, and rare loss-of-function mutations in POMC cause obesity. Moreover, POMC is the prime candidate gene within a highly significant quantitative trait locus on chromosome 2 associated with obesity traits in several human populations. Here, we identify two phylogenetically conserved neuronal POMC enhancers designated nPE1 (600 bp) and nPE2 (150 bp) located approximately 10 to 12 kb upstream of mammalian POMC transcriptional units. We show that mouse or human genomic regions containing these enhancers are able to direct reporter gene expression to POMC hypothalamic neurons, but not the pituitary of transgenic mice. Conversely, deletion of nPE1 and nPE2 in the context of the entire transcriptional unit of POMC abolishes transgene expression in the hypothalamus without affecting pituitary expression. Our results indicate that the nPEs are necessary and sufficient for hypothalamic POMC expression and that POMC expression in the brain and pituitary is controlled by independent sets of enhancers. Our study advances the understanding of the molecular nature of hypothalamic POMC neurons and will be useful to determine whether polymorphisms in POMC regulatory regions play a role in the predisposition to obesity. PMID:15798195

  4. Dopamine neurons from transgenic mice with a knockout of the p53 gene resist MPTP neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Trimmer, P A; Smith, T S; Jung, A B; Bennett, J P

    1996-09-01

    We have examined MPTP toxicity to dopamine neurons of mice homozygous for a transgenic knockout of the p53 growth control gene (p53-/-). MPTP at a total dose of 96 mg/kg administered in four doses over two days produced a non-homogeneous loss of striatal dopamine transport sites and quantitatively reduced 3H-mazindol binding to similar degrees in p53-/- and wild type controls 2 and 3 weeks after starting MPTP. Nigral DA neurons stained immunohistochemically for tyrosine hydroxylase were counted using both manual and automated methods and found to be reduced 29-34% in wild type controls but were not reduced in p53-/-. Mean DA neuronal surface areas were reduced 63-68% by MPTP in controls and 35-50% in p53-/-. We conclude that p53 protein appears necessary for complete expression of MPTP neurotoxicity to dopamine neurons. Our findings suggest that the p53 gene and other growth control genes may regulate dopamine neuronal death in PD.

  5. Neuronal Expression and Cell-Type-Specific Gene-Silencing of Best1 in Thalamic Reticular Nucleus Neurons Using pSico-Red System

    PubMed Central

    Jung, Jae-Young; Lee, Seung Eun; Hwang, Eun Mi

    2016-01-01

    Assessing the cell-type expression pattern of a certain gene can be achieved by using cell-type-specific gene manipulation. Recently, cre-recombinase-dependent gene-silencing tool, pSico has become popular in neuroscientific research. However, pSico has a critical limitation that gene-silenced cell cannot be identified by fluorescence, due to an excision of the reporter gene for green fluorescence protein (GFP). To overcome this limitation, we newly developed pSico-Red, with mCherry gene as a reporter outside two loxP sites, so that red mCherry signal is detected in all transfected cells. When a cell expresses cre, GFP is excised and shRNA is enabled, resulting in disappearance of GFP. This feature of pSico-Red provides not only cell-type-specific gene-silencing but also identification of cre expressing cells. Using this system, we demonstrated for the first time the neuronal expression of the Bestrophin-1 (Best1) in thalamic reticular nucleus (TRN) and TRN-neuron-specific gene-silencing of Best1. We combined adeno-associated virus (AAV) carrying Best1-shRNA in pSico-Red vector and transgenic mouse expressing cre under the promoter of distal-less homeobox 5/6 (DLX5/6), a marker for inhibitory neurons. Firstly, we found that almost all of inhibitory neurons in TRN express Best1 by immunohistochemistry. Using pSico-Red virus, we found that 80% of infected TRN neurons were DLX5/6-cre positive but parvalbumin negative. Finally, we found that Best1 in DLX5/6-cre positive neurons were significantly reduced by Best1-shRNA. Our study demonstrates that TRN neurons strongly express Best1 and that pSico-Red is a valuable tool for cell-type-specific gene manipulation and identification of specific cell population. PMID:27358580

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

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Lorenz, M G; Wackernagel, W

    1994-01-01

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

  8. Skin incision induces expression of axonal regeneration-related genes in adult rat spinal sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Hill, Caitlin E.; Harrison, Benjamin J.; Rau, Kris K.; Hougland, M. Tyler; Bunge, Mary Bartlett; Mendell, Lorne M.; Petruska, Jeffrey C.

    2010-01-01

    Skin incision and nerve injury both induce painful conditions. Incisional and post-surgical pain is believed to arise primarily from inflammation of tissue and the subsequent sensitization of peripheral and central neurons. The role of axonal regeneration-related processes in development of pain has only been considered when there has been injury to the peripheral nerve itself, even though tissue damage likely induces injury of resident axons. We sought to determine if skin incision would affect expression of regeneration-related genes such as activating transcription factor 3 (ATF3) in dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons. ATF3 is absent from DRG neurons of the normal adult rodent, but is induced by injury of peripheral nerves and modulates the regenerative capacity of axons. Image analysis of immunolabeled DRG sections revealed that skin incision led to an increase in the number of DRG neurons expressing ATF3. RT-PCR indicated that other regeneration-associated genes (galanin, GAP-43, Gadd45a) were also increased, further suggesting an injury-like response in DRG neurons. Our finding that injury of skin can induce expression of neuronal injury/regeneration-associated genes may impact how clinical post-surgical pain is investigated and treated. Perspective Tissue injury, even without direct nerve injury, may induce a state of enhanced growth capacity in sensory neurons. Axonal regeneration-associated processes should be considered alongside nerve signal conduction and inflammatory/sensitization processes as possible mechanisms contributing to pain, particularly the transition from acute to chronic pain. PMID:20627820

  9. Direct gene transfer in the Gottingen minipig CNS using stereotaxic lentiviral microinjections.

    PubMed

    Norgaard Glud, Andreas; Hedegaard, Claus; Nielsen, Mette Slot; Sørensen, Jens Christian; Bendixen, Christian; Jensen, Poul Henning; Larsen, Knud; Bjarkam, Carsten Reidies

    2010-01-01

    We aim to induce direct viral mediated gene transfer in the substantia nigra (SN) of the Gottingen minipig using MRI guided stereotaxic injections of lentiviral vectors encoding enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP). Nine female Gottingen minipigs were injected unilaterally into the SN with 6 per 2.5 microliters lentivirus capable of transducing cells and mediating expression of recombinant EGFP. The animals were euthanized after four (n=3) or twenty weeks (n=6). Fresh brain tissue from three animals was used for PCR. The remaining six brains were cryo- or paraffin-sectioned for fluorescence, Nissl-, and immunohistochemical EGFP visualization. EGFP was seen in nigral neurons, axons, glial cells, endothelial cells, and in nigral fibers targeting the striatum. PCR-based detection confirmed the presence of the transgene in SN, whereas all other examined brain areas were negative, indicating that the immunohistochemically detected EGFP in the striatum derived from transfected nigral cells.

  10. y-Synuclein is an Adipocyte-Neuron Gene Coordinately-Expressed with Leptin & Increased in Obesity

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Objective: Recently, we characterized tumor suppressor candidate 5 (Tusc5) as an adipocyte-neuron peroxisome proliferator activated receptor-y (PPARy) target gene (1). Our objective herein was to identify additional candidate genes that play shared roles in neuron-fat physiology. Research Methods an...

  11. Kisspeptin Activates Ankrd 26 Gene Expression in Migrating Embryonic GnRH Neurons.

    PubMed

    Soga, Tomoko; Lim, Wei Ling; Khoo, Alan Soo-Beng; Parhar, Ishwar S

    2016-01-01

    Kisspeptin, a newly discovered neuropeptide, regulates gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH). Kisspeptins are a large RF-amide family of peptides. The kisspeptin coded by KiSS-1 gene is a 145-amino acid protein that is cleaved to C-terminal peptide kisspeptin-10. G-protein-coupled receptor 54 (GPR54) has been identified as a kisspeptin receptor, and it is expressed in GnRH neurons and in a variety of cancer cells. In this study, enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) labeled GnRH cells with migratory properties, which express GPR54, served as a model to study the effects of kisspeptin on cell migration. We monitored EGFP-GnRH neuronal migration in brain slide culture of embryonic day 14 transgenic rat by live cell imaging system and studied the effects of kisspeptin-10 (1 nM) treatment for 36 h on GnRH migration. Furthermore, to determine kisspeptin-induced molecular pathways related with apoptosis and cytoskeletal changes during neuronal migration, we studied the expression levels of candidate genes in laser-captured EGFP-GnRH neurons by real-time PCR. We found that there was no change in the expression level of genes related to cell proliferation and apoptosis. The expression of ankyrin repeat domain-containing protein (ankrd) 26 in EGFP-GnRH neurons was upregulated by the exposure to kisspeptin. These studies suggest that ankrd 26 gene plays an unidentified role in regulating neuronal movement mediated by kisspeptin-GPR54 signaling, which could be a potential pathway to suppress cell migration.

  12. Kisspeptin Activates Ankrd 26 Gene Expression in Migrating Embryonic GnRH Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Soga, Tomoko; Lim, Wei Ling; Khoo, Alan Soo-Beng; Parhar, Ishwar S.

    2016-01-01

    Kisspeptin, a newly discovered neuropeptide, regulates gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH). Kisspeptins are a large RF-amide family of peptides. The kisspeptin coded by KiSS-1 gene is a 145-amino acid protein that is cleaved to C-terminal peptide kisspeptin-10. G-protein-coupled receptor 54 (GPR54) has been identified as a kisspeptin receptor, and it is expressed in GnRH neurons and in a variety of cancer cells. In this study, enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) labeled GnRH cells with migratory properties, which express GPR54, served as a model to study the effects of kisspeptin on cell migration. We monitored EGFP–GnRH neuronal migration in brain slide culture of embryonic day 14 transgenic rat by live cell imaging system and studied the effects of kisspeptin-10 (1 nM) treatment for 36 h on GnRH migration. Furthermore, to determine kisspeptin-induced molecular pathways related with apoptosis and cytoskeletal changes during neuronal migration, we studied the expression levels of candidate genes in laser-captured EGFP–GnRH neurons by real-time PCR. We found that there was no change in the expression level of genes related to cell proliferation and apoptosis. The expression of ankyrin repeat domain-containing protein (ankrd) 26 in EGFP–GnRH neurons was upregulated by the exposure to kisspeptin. These studies suggest that ankrd 26 gene plays an unidentified role in regulating neuronal movement mediated by kisspeptin–GPR54 signaling, which could be a potential pathway to suppress cell migration. PMID:26973595

  13. Neuronal RARβ Signaling Modulates PTEN Activity Directly in Neurons and via Exosome Transfer in Astrocytes to Prevent Glial Scar Formation and Induce Spinal Cord Regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Goncalves, Maria B.; Malmqvist, Tony; Clarke, Earl; Hubens, Chantal J.; Grist, John; Hobbs, Carl; Trigo, Diogo; Risling, Mårten; Angeria, Maria; Damberg, Peter; Carlstedt, Thomas P.

    2015-01-01

    Failure of axonal regeneration in the central nervous system (CNS) is mainly attributed to a lack of intrinsic neuronal growth programs and an inhibitory environment from a glial scar. Phosphatase and tensin homolog (PTEN) is a major negative regulator of neuronal regeneration and, as such, inhibiting its activity has been considered a therapeutic target for spinal cord (SC) injuries (SCIs). Using a novel model of rat cervical avulsion, we show that treatment with a retinoic acid receptor β (RARβ) agonist results in locomotor and sensory recovery. Axonal regeneration from the severed roots into the SC could be seen by biotinylated dextran amine labeling. Light micrographs of the dorsal root entry zone show the peripheral nervous system (PNS)–CNS transition of regrown axons. RARβ agonist treatment also resulted in the absence of scar formation. Mechanism studies revealed that, in RARβ-agonist-treated neurons, PTEN activity is decreased by cytoplasmic phosphorylation and increased secretion in exosomes. These are taken up by astrocytes, resulting in hampered proliferation and causing them to arrange in a normal-appearing scaffold around the regenerating axons. Attribution of the glial modulation to neuronal PTEN in exosomes was demonstrated by the use of an exosome inhibitor in vivo and PTEN siRNA in vitro assays. The dual effect of RARβ signaling, both neuronal and neuronal–glial, results in axonal regeneration into the SC after dorsal root neurotmesis. Targeting this pathway may open new avenues for the treatment of SCIs. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Spinal cord injuries (SCIs) often result in permanent damage in the adult due to the very limited capacity of axonal regeneration. Intrinsic neuronal programs and the formation of a glial scar are the main obstacles. Here, we identify a single target, neuronal retinoic acid receptor β (RARβ), which modulates these two aspects of the postinjury physiological response. Activation of RARβ in the neuron inactivates

  14. Gene Transfer into Rat Brain Using Adenoviral Vectors

    PubMed Central

    Puntel, Mariana; Kroeger, Kurt M.; Sanderson, Nicholas S.R.; Thomas, Clare E.; Castro, Maria G.; Lowenstein, Pedro R.

    2010-01-01

    Viral vector–mediated gene delivery is an attractive procedure for introducing genes into the brain, both for purposes of basic neuroscience research and to develop gene therapy for neurological diseases. Replication-defective adenoviruses possess many features which make them ideal vectors for this purpose—efficiently transducing terminally differentiated cells such as neurons and glial cells, resulting in high levels of transgene expression in vivo. Also, in the absence of anti-adenovirus immunity, these vectors can sustain very long-term transgene expression within the brain parenchyma. This unit provides protocols for the stereotactic injection of adenoviral vectors into the brain, followed by protocols to detect transgene expression or infiltrates of immune cells by immunocytochemistry or immunofluorescence. ELISPOT and neutralizing antibody assay methodologies are provided to quantitate the levels of cellular and humoral immune responses against adenoviruses. Quantitation of adenoviral vector genomes within the rat brain using qPCR is also described. Curr. Protoc. Neurosci. 50:4.24.1–4.24.49. © 2010 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc. PMID:20066657

  15. BDNF gene delivery mediated by neuron-targeted nanoparticles is neuroprotective in peripheral nerve injury.

    PubMed

    Lopes, Cátia D F; Gonçalves, Nádia P; Gomes, Carla P; Saraiva, Maria J; Pêgo, Ana P

    2017-03-01

    Neuron-targeted gene delivery is a promising strategy to treat peripheral neuropathies. Here we propose the use of polymeric nanoparticles based on thiolated trimethyl chitosan (TMCSH) to mediate targeted gene delivery to peripheral neurons upon a peripheral and minimally invasive intramuscular administration. Nanoparticles were grafted with the non-toxic carboxylic fragment of the tetanus neurotoxin (HC) to allow neuron targeting and were explored to deliver a plasmid DNA encoding for the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in a peripheral nerve injury model. The TMCSH-HC/BDNF nanoparticle treatment promoted the release and significant expression of BDNF in neural tissues, which resulted in an enhanced functional recovery after injury as compared to control treatments (vehicle and non-targeted nanoparticles), associated with an improvement in key pro-regenerative events, namely, the increased expression of neurofilament and growth-associated protein GAP-43 in the injured nerves. Moreover, the targeted nanoparticle treatment was correlated with a significantly higher density of myelinated axons in the distal stump of injured nerves, as well as with preservation of unmyelinated axon density as compared with controls and a protective role in injury-denervated muscles, preventing them from denervation. These results highlight the potential of TMCSH-HC nanoparticles as non-viral gene carriers to deliver therapeutic genes into the peripheral neurons and thus, pave the way for their use as an effective therapeutic intervention for peripheral neuropathies.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-10-05

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

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

    PubMed

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

    1997-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-01-01

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    1995-03-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    McNeilly, Celia L.; McMillan, David J.

    2014-01-01

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

  2. Ccm3, a gene associated with cerebral cavernous malformations, is required for neuronal migration.

    PubMed

    Louvi, Angeliki; Nishimura, Sayoko; Günel, Murat

    2014-03-01

    Loss of function of cerebral cavernous malformation 3 (CCM3) results in an autosomal dominant cerebrovascular disorder. Here, we uncover a developmental role for CCM3 in regulating neuronal migration in the neocortex. Using cell type-specific gene inactivation in mice, we show that CCM3 has both cell autonomous and cell non-autonomous functions in neural progenitors and is specifically required in radial glia and newly born pyramidal neurons migrating through the subventricular zone, but not in those migrating through the cortical plate. Loss of CCM3 function leads to RhoA activation, alterations in the actin and microtubule cytoskeleton affecting neuronal morphology, and abnormalities in laminar positioning of primarily late-born neurons, indicating CCM3 involvement in radial glia-dependent locomotion and possible interaction with the Cdk5/RhoA pathway. Thus, we identify a novel cytoplasmic regulator of neuronal migration and demonstrate that its inactivation in radial glia progenitors and nascent neurons produces severe malformations of cortical development.

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

    SciTech Connect

    Wagner, E.F.; Mintz, B.

    1982-02-01

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    1986-04-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Yang, Lili; Wang, Pin

    2014-01-27

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-04-01

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

  7. Gene dosage-dependent rescue of HSP neurite defects in SPG4 patients’ neurons

    PubMed Central

    Havlicek, Steven; Kohl, Zacharias; Mishra, Himanshu K.; Prots, Iryna; Eberhardt, Esther; Denguir, Naime; Wend, Holger; Plötz, Sonja; Boyer, Leah; Marchetto, Maria C.N.; Aigner, Stefan; Sticht, Heinrich; Groemer, Teja W.; Hehr, Ute; Lampert, Angelika; Schlötzer-Schrehardt, Ursula; Winkler, Jürgen; Gage, Fred H.; Winner, Beate

    2014-01-01

    The hereditary spastic paraplegias (HSPs) are a heterogeneous group of motorneuron diseases characterized by progressive spasticity and paresis of the lower limbs. Mutations in Spastic Gait 4 (SPG4), encoding spastin, are the most frequent cause of HSP. To understand how mutations in SPG4 affect human neurons, we generated human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) from fibroblasts of two patients carrying a c.1684C>T nonsense mutation and from two controls. These SPG4 and control hiPSCs were able to differentiate into neurons and glia at comparable efficiency. All known spastin isoforms were reduced in SPG4 neuronal cells. The complexity of SPG4 neurites was decreased, which was paralleled by an imbalance of axonal transport with less retrograde movement. Prominent neurite swellings with disrupted microtubules were present in SPG4 neurons at an ultrastructural level. While some of these swellings contain acetylated and detyrosinated tubulin, these tubulin modifications were unchanged in total cell lysates of SPG4 neurons. Upregulation of another microtubule-severing protein, p60 katanin, may partially compensate for microtubuli dynamics in SPG4 neurons. Overexpression of the M1 or M87 spastin isoforms restored neurite length, branching, numbers of primary neurites and reduced swellings in SPG4 neuronal cells. We conclude that neurite complexity and maintenance in HSP patient-derived neurons are critically sensitive to spastin gene dosage. Our data show that elevation of single spastin isoform levels is sufficient to restore neurite complexity and reduce neurite swellings in patient cells. Furthermore, our human model offers an ideal platform for pharmacological screenings with the goal to restore physiological spastin levels in SPG4 patients. PMID:24381312

  8. Gene dosage-dependent rescue of HSP neurite defects in SPG4 patients' neurons.

    PubMed

    Havlicek, Steven; Kohl, Zacharias; Mishra, Himanshu K; Prots, Iryna; Eberhardt, Esther; Denguir, Naime; Wend, Holger; Plötz, Sonja; Boyer, Leah; Marchetto, Maria C N; Aigner, Stefan; Sticht, Heinrich; Groemer, Teja W; Hehr, Ute; Lampert, Angelika; Schlötzer-Schrehardt, Ursula; Winkler, Jürgen; Gage, Fred H; Winner, Beate

    2014-05-15

    The hereditary spastic paraplegias (HSPs) are a heterogeneous group of motorneuron diseases characterized by progressive spasticity and paresis of the lower limbs. Mutations in Spastic Gait 4 (SPG4), encoding spastin, are the most frequent cause of HSP. To understand how mutations in SPG4 affect human neurons, we generated human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) from fibroblasts of two patients carrying a c.1684C>T nonsense mutation and from two controls. These SPG4 and control hiPSCs were able to differentiate into neurons and glia at comparable efficiency. All known spastin isoforms were reduced in SPG4 neuronal cells. The complexity of SPG4 neurites was decreased, which was paralleled by an imbalance of axonal transport with less retrograde movement. Prominent neurite swellings with disrupted microtubules were present in SPG4 neurons at an ultrastructural level. While some of these swellings contain acetylated and detyrosinated tubulin, these tubulin modifications were unchanged in total cell lysates of SPG4 neurons. Upregulation of another microtubule-severing protein, p60 katanin, may partially compensate for microtubuli dynamics in SPG4 neurons. Overexpression of the M1 or M87 spastin isoforms restored neurite length, branching, numbers of primary neurites and reduced swellings in SPG4 neuronal cells. We conclude that neurite complexity and maintenance in HSP patient-derived neurons are critically sensitive to spastin gene dosage. Our data show that elevation of single spastin isoform levels is sufficient to restore neurite complexity and reduce neurite swellings in patient cells. Furthermore, our human model offers an ideal platform for pharmacological screenings with the goal to restore physiological spastin levels in SPG4 patients.

  9. Gene expression profile of activated microglia under conditions associated with dopamine neuronal damage.

    PubMed

    Thomas, David M; Francescutti-Verbeem, Dina M; Kuhn, Donald M

    2006-03-01

    Microglia are the resident antigen-presenting cells within the central nervous system (CNS), and they serve immune-like functions in protecting the brain against injury and invading pathogens. By contrast, activated microglia can secrete numerous reactants that damage neurons. The pathogenesis of various neurodegenerative diseases has been associated with microglial activation, but the signaling pathways that program a neuronally protective or destructive phenotype in microglia are not known. To increase the understanding of microglial activation, microarray analysis was used to profile the transcriptome of BV-2 microglial cells after activation. Microglia were activated by lipopolysaccharide, the HIV neurotoxic protein TAT, and dopamine quinone, each of which has been linked to dopamine neuronal damage. We identified 210 of 9882 genes whose expression was differentially regulated by all activators (116 increased and 94 decreased in expression). Gene ontology analysis assigned up-regulated genes to a number of specific biological processes and molecular functions, including immune response, inflammation, and cytokine/chemokine activity. Genes down-regulated in expression contribute to conditions that are permissive of microglial migration, lowered adhesion to matrix, lessened phagocytosis, and reduction in receptors that oppose chemotaxis and inflammation. These results elaborate a broad profile of microglial genes whose expression is altered by conditions associated with both neurodegenerative diseases and microglial activation.

  10. A microRNA embedded AAV alpha-synuclein gene silencing vector for dopaminergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Han, Ye; Khodr, Christina E.; Sapru, Mohan K.; Pedapati, Jyothi; Bohn, Martha C.

    2011-01-01

    Alpha-synuclein (SNCA), an abundantly expressed presynaptic protein, is implicated in Parkinson disease (PD). Since over-expression of human SNCA (hSNCA) leads to death of dopaminergic (DA) neurons in human, rodent and fly brain, hSNCA gene silencing may reduce levels of toxic forms of SNCA and ameliorate degeneration of DA neurons in PD. To begin to develop a gene therapy for PD based on hSNCA gene silencing, two AAV gene silencing vectors were designed, and tested for efficiency and specificity of silencing, as well as toxicity in vitro. The same hSNCA silencing sequence (shRNA) was used in both vectors, but in one vector, the shRNA was embedded in a microRNA backbone and driven by a pol II promoter, and in the other the shRNA was not embedded in a microRNA and was driven by a pol III promoter. Both vectors silenced hSNCA to the same extent in 293T cells transfected with hSNCA. In DA PC12 cells, neither vector decreased expression of rat SNCA, tyrosine hydroxylase (TH), dopamine transporter (DAT) or the vesicular monoamine transporter (VMAT). However, the mir30 embedded vector was significantly less toxic to both PC12 and SH-SY5Y cells. Our in vitro data suggest that this miRNA-embedded silencing vector may be ideal for chronic in vivo SNCA gene silencing in DA neurons. PMID:21338582

  11. The androgen receptor gene: a major modifier of speed of neuronal transmission and intelligence?

    PubMed

    Manning, J T

    2007-01-01

    Humans show considerable additive genetic variance in cognitive ability or general intelligence (g) but the genes that influence this variation are largely unknown. It is suggested here that the X-linked androgen receptor gene (AR) has a major modifying effect on speed of neuronal transmission and thus on g. The AR is polymorphic in its N-terminal transactivation domain which encodes a polyglutamine tract (CAGn) with a parametric mean of n=21 CAG repeats and normal variation between n=11 and n=30 repeats . Very low repeat numbers are associated with mental retardation, repeat numbers above 30 with reduced cognitive function, and CAGn greater than 40 with spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy. Within the range of 11-30 repeats short CAG chains are associated with high androgen sensitivity and high sperm counts. Despite this, all human populations contain many individuals with n>21 repeats. I suggest that within the range of 11-30 repeats there is a positive association with speed of neuronal transmission and values of g. The advantage of high g and the consequent spread of alleles for high CAGn will be countered by the negative effects on sperm production. Below CAGn=11 and above CAGn=30 neuronal speed may reduce, thus leading to reductions in g and loss of function of neurons. In support of the model I discuss the link between the X-chromosome and g, the comparative structure of the AR gene in the primates, and the variation in CAGn and g in human ethnic groups.

  12. Gene networks activated by specific patterns of action potentials in dorsal root ganglia neurons

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Philip R.; Cohen, Jonathan E.; Iacobas, Dumitru A.; Iacobas, Sanda; Fields, R. Douglas

    2017-01-01

    Gene regulatory networks underlie the long-term changes in cell specification, growth of synaptic connections, and adaptation that occur throughout neonatal and postnatal life. Here we show that the transcriptional response in neurons is exquisitely sensitive to the temporal nature of action potential firing patterns. Neurons were electrically stimulated with the same number of action potentials, but with different inter-burst intervals. We found that these subtle alterations in the timing of action potential firing differentially regulates hundreds of genes, across many functional categories, through the activation or repression of distinct transcriptional networks. Our results demonstrate that the transcriptional response in neurons to environmental stimuli, coded in the pattern of action potential firing, can be very sensitive to the temporal nature of action potential delivery rather than the intensity of stimulation or the total number of action potentials delivered. These data identify temporal kinetics of action potential firing as critical components regulating intracellular signalling pathways and gene expression in neurons to extracellular cues during early development and throughout life. PMID:28256583

  13. Gene networks activated by specific patterns of action potentials in dorsal root ganglia neurons.

    PubMed

    Lee, Philip R; Cohen, Jonathan E; Iacobas, Dumitru A; Iacobas, Sanda; Fields, R Douglas

    2017-03-03

    Gene regulatory networks underlie the long-term changes in cell specification, growth of synaptic connections, and adaptation that occur throughout neonatal and postnatal life. Here we show that the transcriptional response in neurons is exquisitely sensitive to the temporal nature of action potential firing patterns. Neurons were electrically stimulated with the same number of action potentials, but with different inter-burst intervals. We found that these subtle alterations in the timing of action potential firing differentially regulates hundreds of genes, across many functional categories, through the activation or repression of distinct transcriptional networks. Our results demonstrate that the transcriptional response in neurons to environmental stimuli, coded in the pattern of action potential firing, can be very sensitive to the temporal nature of action potential delivery rather than the intensity of stimulation or the total number of action potentials delivered. These data identify temporal kinetics of action potential firing as critical components regulating intracellular signalling pathways and gene expression in neurons to extracellular cues during early development and throughout life.

  14. The study of the Bithorax-complex genes in patterning CCAP neurons reveals a temporal control of neuronal differentiation by Abd-B

    PubMed Central

    Moris-Sanz, M.; Estacio-Gómez, A.; Sánchez-Herrero, E.; Díaz-Benjumea, F. J.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT During development, HOX genes play critical roles in the establishment of segmental differences. In the Drosophila central nervous system, these differences are manifested in the number and type of neurons generated by each neuroblast in each segment. HOX genes can act either in neuroblasts or in postmitotic cells, and either early or late in a lineage. Additionally, they can be continuously required during development or just at a specific stage. Moreover, these features are generally segment-specific. Lately, it has been shown that contrary to what happens in other tissues, where HOX genes define domains of expression, these genes are expressed in individual cells as part of the combinatorial codes involved in cell type specification. In this report we analyse the role of the Bithorax-complex genes – Ultrabithorax, abdominal-A and Abdominal-B – in sculpting the pattern of crustacean cardioactive peptide (CCAP)-expressing neurons. These neurons are widespread in invertebrates, express CCAP, Bursicon and MIP neuropeptides and play major roles in controlling ecdysis. There are two types of CCAP neuron: interneurons and efferent neurons. Our results indicate that Ultrabithorax and Abdominal-A are not necessary for specification of the CCAP-interneurons, but are absolutely required to prevent the death by apoptosis of the CCAP-efferent neurons. Furthermore, Abdominal-B controls by repression the temporal onset of neuropeptide expression in a subset of CCAP-efferent neurons, and a peak of ecdysone hormone at the end of larval life counteracts this repression. Thus, Bithorax complex genes control the developmental appearance of these neuropeptides both temporally and spatially. PMID:26276099

  15. Distinct Profiles of REST Interactions with Its Target Genes at Different Stages of Neuronal DevelopmentD⃞

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Yuh-Man; Greenway, Deborah J.; Johnson, Rory; Street, Miyoko; Belyaev, Nikolai D.; Deuchars, Jim; Bee, Thomas; Wilde, Sandra; Buckley, Noel J.

    2005-01-01

    Differentiation of pluripotent embryonic stem (ES) cells through multipotent neural stem (NS) cells into differentiated neurons is accompanied by wholesale changes in transcriptional programs. One factor that is present at all three stages and a key to neuronal differentiation is the RE1-silencing transcription factor (REST/NRSF). Here, we have used a novel chromatin immunoprecipitation-based cloning strategy (SACHI) to identify 89 REST target genes in ES cells, embryonic hippocampal NS cells and mature hippocampus. The gene products are involved in all aspects of neuronal function, especially neuronal differentiation, axonal growth, vesicular transport and release, and ionic conductance. Most target genes are silent or expressed at low levels in ES and NS cells, but are expressed at much higher levels in hippocampus. These data indicate that the REST regulon is specific to each developmental stage and support the notion that REST plays distinct roles in regulating gene expression in pluripotent ES cells, multipotent NS cells, and mature neurons. PMID:16195345

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    2007-09-24

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

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

    PubMed

    Hoffmeister, Meike; Martin, William

    2003-08-01

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

  18. Resistance Gene Transfer during Treatments for Experimental Avian Colibacillosis

    PubMed Central

    Dheilly, Alexandra; Le Devendec, Laëtitia; Mourand, Gwenaëlle; Bouder, Axelle; Jouy, Eric

    2012-01-01

    An experiment was conducted in animal facilities to compare the impacts of four avian colibacillosis treatments—oxytetracycline (OTC), trimethoprim-sulfadimethoxine (SXT), amoxicillin (AMX), or enrofloxacin (ENR)—on the susceptibility of Escherichia coli in broiler intestinal tracts. Birds were first orally inoculated with rifampin-resistant E. coli strains bearing plasmid genes conferring resistance to fluoroquinolones (qnr), cephalosporins (blaCTX-M or blaFOX), trimethoprim-sulfonamides, aminoglycosides, or tetracyclines. Feces samples were collected before, during, and after antimicrobial treatments. The susceptibilities of E. coli strains were studied, and resistance gene transfer was analyzed. An increase in the tetracycline-resistant E. coli population was observed only in OTC-treated birds, whereas multiresistant E. coli was detected in the dominant E. coli populations of SXT-, AMX-, or ENR-treated birds. Most multiresistant E. coli strains were susceptible to rifampin and exhibited various pulsed-field gel electrophoresis profiles, suggesting the transfer of one of the multiresistance plasmids from the inoculated strains to other E. coli strains in the intestinal tract. In conclusion, this study clearly illustrates how, in E. coli, “old” antimicrobials may coselect antimicrobial resistance to recent and critical molecules. PMID:21986830

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-05-01

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

  1. Anxiety as a neurodevelopmental disorder in a neuronal subpopulation: Evidence from gene expression data.

    PubMed

    Viggiano, Adela; Cacciola, Giovanna; Widmer, David A J; Viggiano, Davide

    2015-08-30

    The relationship between genes and anxious behavior, is nor linear nor monotonic. To address this problem, we analyzed with a meta-analytic method the literature data of the behavior of knockout mice, retrieving 33 genes whose deletion was accompanied by increased anxious behavior, 34 genes related to decreased anxious behavior and 48 genes not involved in anxiety. We correlated the anxious behavior resulting from the deletion of these genes to their brain expression, using the Allen Brain Atlas and Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO) database. The main finding is that the genes accompanied, after deletion, by a modification of the anxious behavior, have lower expression in the cerebral cortex, the amygdala and the ventral striatum. The lower expression level was putatively due to their selective presence in a neuronal subpopulation. This difference was replicated also using a database of human gene expression, further showing that the differential expression pertained, in humans, a temporal window of young postnatal age (4 months up to 4 years) but was not evident at fetal or adult human stages. Finally, using gene enrichment analysis we also show that presynaptic genes are involved in the emergence of anxiety and postsynaptic genes in the reduction of anxiety after gene deletion.

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

    PubMed

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

    2007-01-01

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

  3. A sympathetic neuron autonomous role for Egr3-mediated gene regulation in dendrite morphogenesis and target tissue innervation.

    PubMed

    Quach, David H; Oliveira-Fernandes, Michelle; Gruner, Katherine A; Tourtellotte, Warren G

    2013-03-06

    Egr3 is a nerve growth factor (NGF)-induced transcriptional regulator that is essential for normal sympathetic nervous system development. Mice lacking Egr3 in the germline have sympathetic target tissue innervation abnormalities and physiologic sympathetic dysfunction similar to humans with dysautonomia. However, since Egr3 is widely expressed and has pleiotropic function, it has not been clear whether it has a role within sympathetic neurons and if so, what target genes it regulates to facilitate target tissue innervation. Here, we show that Egr3 expression within sympathetic neurons is required for their normal innervation since isolated sympathetic neurons lacking Egr3 have neurite outgrowth abnormalities when treated with NGF and mice with sympathetic neuron-restricted Egr3 ablation have target tissue innervation abnormalities similar to mice lacking Egr3 in all tissues. Microarray analysis performed on sympathetic neurons identified many target genes deregulated in the absence of Egr3, with some of the most significantly deregulated genes having roles in axonogenesis, dendritogenesis, and axon guidance. Using a novel genetic technique to visualize axons and dendrites in a subpopulation of randomly labeled sympathetic neurons, we found that Egr3 has an essential role in regulating sympathetic neuron dendrite morphology and terminal axon branching, but not in regulating sympathetic axon guidance to their targets. Together, these results indicate that Egr3 has a sympathetic neuron autonomous role in sympathetic nervous system development that involves modulating downstream target genes affecting the outgrowth and branching of sympathetic neuron dendrites and axons.

  4. Congenital Nystagmus Gene FRMD7 Is Necessary for Establishing a Neuronal Circuit Asymmetry for Direction Selectivity

    PubMed Central

    Yonehara, Keisuke; Fiscella, Michele; Drinnenberg, Antonia; Esposti, Federico; Trenholm, Stuart; Krol, Jacek; Franke, Felix; Scherf, Brigitte Gross; Kusnyerik, Akos; Müller, Jan; Szabo, Arnold; Jüttner, Josephine; Cordoba, Francisco; Reddy, Ashrithpal Police; Németh, János; Nagy, Zoltán Zsolt; Munier, Francis; Hierlemann, Andreas; Roska, Botond

    2016-01-01

    Summary Neuronal circuit asymmetries are important components of brain circuits, but the molecular pathways leading to their establishment remain unknown. Here we found that the mutation of FRMD7, a gene that is defective in human congenital nystagmus, leads to the selective loss of the horizontal optokinetic reflex in mice, as it does in humans. This is accompanied by the selective loss of horizontal direction selectivity in retinal ganglion cells and the transition from asymmetric to symmetric inhibitory input to horizontal direction-selective ganglion cells. In wild-type retinas, we found FRMD7 specifically expressed in starburst amacrine cells, the interneuron type that provides asymmetric inhibition to direction-selective retinal ganglion cells. This work identifies FRMD7 as a key regulator in establishing a neuronal circuit asymmetry, and it suggests the involvement of a specific inhibitory neuron type in the pathophysiology of a neurological disease. Video Abstract PMID:26711119

  5. Altered Expression of Genes Encoding Neurotransmitter Receptors in GnRH Neurons of Proestrous Mice

    PubMed Central

    Vastagh, Csaba; Rodolosse, Annie; Solymosi, Norbert; Liposits, Zsolt

    2016-01-01

    Gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) neurons play a key role in the central regulation of reproduction. In proestrous female mice, estradiol triggers the pre-ovulatory GnRH surge, however, its impact on the expression of neurotransmitter receptor genes in GnRH neurons has not been explored yet. We hypothesized that proestrus is accompanied by substantial changes in the expression profile of genes coding for neurotransmitter receptors in GnRH neurons. We compared the transcriptome of GnRH neurons obtained from intact, proestrous, and metestrous female GnRH-GFP transgenic mice, respectively. About 1500 individual GnRH neurons were sampled from both groups and their transcriptome was analyzed using microarray hybridization and real-time PCR. In this study, changes in mRNA expression of genes involved in neurotransmitter signaling were investigated. Differential gene expression was most apparent in GABA-ergic (Gabbr1, Gabra3, Gabrb3, Gabrb2, Gabrg2), glutamatergic (Gria1, Gria2, Grin1, Grin3a, Grm1, Slc17a6), cholinergic (Chrnb2, Chrm4) and dopaminergic (Drd3, Drd4), adrenergic (Adra1b, Adra2a, Adra2c), adenosinergic (Adora2a, Adora2b), glycinergic (Glra), purinergic (P2rx7), and serotonergic (Htr1b) receptors. In concert with these events, expression of genes in the signaling pathways downstream to the receptors, i.e., G-proteins (Gnai1, Gnai2, Gnas), adenylate-cyclases (Adcy3, Adcy5), protein kinase A (Prkaca, Prkacb) protein kinase C (Prkca) and certain transporters (Slc1a4, Slc17a6, Slc6a17) were also changed. The marked differences found in the expression of genes involved in neurotransmitter signaling of GnRH neurons at pro- and metestrous stages of the ovarian cycle indicate the differential contribution of these neurotransmitter systems to the induction of the pre-ovulatory GnRH surge, the known prerequisite of the subsequent hormonal cascade inducing ovulation. PMID:27774052

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  7. Neurons That Underlie Drosophila melanogaster Reproductive Behaviors: Detection of a Large Male-Bias in Gene Expression in fruitless-Expressing Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Newell, Nicole R.; New, Felicia N.; Dalton, Justin E.; McIntyre, Lauren M.; Arbeitman, Michelle N.

    2016-01-01

    Male and female reproductive behaviors in Drosophila melanogaster are vastly different, but neurons that express sex-specifically spliced fruitless transcripts (fru P1) underlie these behaviors in both sexes. How this set of neurons can generate such different behaviors between the two sexes is an unresolved question. A particular challenge is that fru P1-expressing neurons comprise only 2–5% of the adult nervous system, and so studies of adult head tissue or whole brain may not reveal crucial differences. Translating Ribosome Affinity Purification (TRAP) identifies the actively translated pool of mRNAs from fru P1-expressing neurons, allowing a sensitive, cell-type-specific assay. We find four times more male-biased than female-biased genes in TRAP mRNAs from fru P1-expressing neurons. This suggests a potential mechanism to generate dimorphism in behavior. The male-biased genes may direct male behaviors by establishing cell fate in a similar context of gene expression observed in females. These results suggest a possible global mechanism for how distinct behaviors can arise from a shared set of neurons. PMID:27247289

  8. Cannabidiol Activates Neuronal Precursor Genes in Human Gingival Mesenchymal Stromal Cells.

    PubMed

    Soundara Rajan, Thangavelu; Giacoppo, Sabrina; Scionti, Domenico; Diomede, Francesca; Grassi, Gianpaolo; Pollastro, Federica; Piattelli, Adriano; Bramanti, Placido; Mazzon, Emanuela; Trubiani, Oriana

    2016-12-05

    In the last years, mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) from oral tissues have received considerable interest in regenerative medicine since they can be obtained with minimal invasive procedure and exhibit immunomodulatory properties. This study was aimed to investigate whether in vitro pre-treatment of MSCs obtained from human gingiva (hGMSCs) with Cannabidiol (CBD), a cannabinoid component produced by the plant Cannabis sativa, may promote human gingiva derived MSCs to differentiate toward neuronal precursor cells. Specifically, we have treated the hGMSCs with CBD (5 µM) for 24 h in order to evaluate the expression of genes involved in cannabidiol signaling, cell proliferation, self-renewal and multipotency, and neural progenitor cells differentiation. Next generation sequencing (NGS) demonstrated that CBD activates genes associated with G protein coupled receptor signaling in hGMSCs. Genes involved in DNA replication, cell cycle, proliferation, and apoptosis were regulated. Moreover, genes associated with the biological process of neuronal progenitor cells (NCPs) proliferation, neuron differentiation, neurogenesis, and nervous system development were significantly modulated. From our results, we hypothesize that human gingiva-derived MSCs conditioned with CBD could represent a valid method for improving the hGMSCs phenotype and thus might be a potential therapeutic tool in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. J. Cell. Biochem. 9999: 1-16, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-07-27

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

  10. Downregulation of immediate-early genes linking to suppression of neuronal plasticity in rats after 28-day exposure to glycidol

    SciTech Connect

    Akane, Hirotoshi; Saito, Fumiyo; Shiraki, Ayako; Takeyoshi, Masahiro; Imatanaka, Nobuya; Itahashi, Megu; Murakami, Tomoaki; Shibutani, Makoto

    2014-09-01

    We previously found that the 28-day oral toxicity study of glycidol at 200 mg/kg/day in rats resulted in axonopathy in both the central and peripheral nervous systems and aberrations in the late-stage of hippocampal neurogenesis targeting the process of neurite extension. To capture the neuronal parameters in response to glycidol toxicity, these animals were subjected to region-specific global gene expression profiling in four regions of cerebral and cerebellar architectures, followed by immunohistochemical analysis of selected gene products. Expression changes of genes related to axonogenesis and synaptic transmission were observed in the hippocampal dentate gyrus, cingulate cortex and cerebellar vermis at 200 mg/kg showing downregulation in most genes. In the corpus callosum, genes related to growth, survival and functions of glial cells fluctuated their expression. Immunohistochemically, neurons expressing gene products of immediate-early genes, i.e., Arc, Fos and Jun, decreased in their number in the dentate granule cell layer, cingulate cortex and cerebellar vermis. We also applied immunohistochemical analysis in rat offspring after developmental exposure to glycidol through maternal drinking water. The results revealed increases of Arc{sup +} neurons at 1000 ppm and Fos{sup +} neurons at ≥ 300 ppm in the dentate granule cell layer of offspring only at the adult stage. These results suggest that glycidol suppressed neuronal plasticity in the brain after 28-day exposure to young adult animals, in contrast to the operation of restoration mechanism to increase neuronal plasticity at the adult stage in response to aberrations in neurogenesis after developmental exposure. - Highlights: • Neuronal toxicity parameters after 28-day glycidol treatment were examined in rats. • Region-specific global gene expression profiling was conducted in brain regions. • Cortical tissues downregulated genes on axonogenesis and synaptic transmission. • Cortical tissues

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

    PubMed

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

    2009-05-01

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

  12. Synaptic gene dysregulation within hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons in mild cognitive impairment

    PubMed Central

    Counts, Scott E.; Alldred, Melissa J.; Che, Shaoli; Ginsberg, Stephen D.; Mufson, Elliott J.

    2014-01-01

    Clinical neuropathologic studies suggest that the selective vulnerability of hippocampal CA1 pyramidal projection neurons plays a key role in the onset of cognitive impairment during the early phases of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Disruption of this neuronal population likely affects hippocampal pre- and postsynaptic efficacy underlying episodic memory circuits. Therefore, identifying perturbations in the expression of synaptic gene products within CA1 neurons prior to frank AD is crucial for the development of disease modifying therapies. Here we used custom-designed microarrays to examine progressive alterations in synaptic gene expression within CA1 neurons in cases harvested from the Rush Religious Orders Study who died with a clinical diagnosis of no cognitive impairment (NCI), mild cognitive impairment (MCI, a putative prodromal AD stage), or mild/moderate AD. Quantitative analysis revealed that 21 out of 28 different transcripts encoding regulators of synaptic function were significantly downregulated (1.4 to 1.8 fold) in CA1 neurons in MCI and AD compared to NCI, whereas synaptic transcript levels were not significantly different between MCI and AD. The downregulated transcripts encoded regulators of presynaptic vesicle trafficking, including synaptophysin and synaptogyrin, regulators of vesicle docking and fusion/release, such as synaptotagmin and syntaxin 1, and regulators of glutamatergic postsynaptic function, including PSD-95 and synaptopodin. Clinical pathologic correlation analysis revealed that downregulation of these synaptic markers was strongly associated with poorer antemortem cognitive status and postmortem AD pathological criteria such as Braak stage, NIA-Reagan, and CERAD diagnosis. In contrast to the widespread loss of synaptic gene expression observed in CA1 neurons in MCI, transcripts encoding β-amyloid precursor protein (APP), APP family members, and regulators of APP metabolism were not differentially regulated in CA1 neurons across the

  13. Modulation of voltage-activated channels by calcitonin gene-related peptide in cultured rat neurones.

    PubMed Central

    Zona, C; Farini, D; Palma, E; Eusebi, F

    1991-01-01

    1. Whole-cell currents were recorded from cultures of dissociated neocortical neurones of the rat. Rat alpha-calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP; 1 nM-1 microM) caused significant dose-dependent decreases in the voltage-activated transient (A-current) and delayed rectifier K+ currents. Forskolin (10 nM-20 microM) mimicked this effect. Peak K+ currents were gradually decreased after loading neurones with cyclic AMP (100 microM) through patch pipettes. CGRP was ineffective in neurones loaded with cyclic AMP. 2. CGRP (0.5-2 microM) increased cytosolic cyclic AMP concentration and this effect was mimicked by forskolin (5-40 microM). 3. CGRP (0.1-1 microM) reduced high-threshold Ca2+ currents; as did forskolin (5-20 microM) and cyclic AMP loaded into the neurones. In contrast, low-threshold Ca2+ currents were not affected by any of these agents. 4. Voltage-activated Na+ currents were significantly reduced by both CGRP (0.1-1 microM) and forskolin (5-20 microM). A similar effect was observed when cells were loaded with cyclic AMP. 5. We conclude that, in neocortical neurones, CGRP attenuates voltage-activated currents by stimulating the intracellular cyclic AMP signalling system. PMID:1726796

  14. Superior Cervical Ganglia Neurons Induce Foxp3+ Regulatory T Cells via Calcitonin Gene-Related Peptide.

    PubMed

    Szklany, Kirsten; Ruiter, Evelyn; Mian, Firoz; Kunze, Wolfgang; Bienenstock, John; Forsythe, Paul; Karimi, Khalil

    2016-01-01

    The nervous and immune systems communicate bidirectionally, utilizing diverse molecular signals including cytokines and neurotransmitters to provide an integrated response to changes in the body's internal and external environment. Although, neuro-immune interactions are becoming better understood under inflammatory circumstances and it has been evidenced that interaction between neurons and T cells results in the conversion of encephalitogenic T cells to T regulatory cells, relatively little is known about the communication between neurons and naïve T cells. Here, we demonstrate that following co-culture of naïve CD4+ T cells with superior cervical ganglion neurons, the percentage of Foxp3 expressing CD4+CD25+ cells significantly increased. This was mediated in part by immune-regulatory cytokines TGF-β and IL-10, as well as the neuropeptide calcitonin gene-related peptide while vasoactive intestinal peptide was shown to play no role in generation of T regulatory cells. Additionally, T cells co-cultured with neurons showed a decrease in the levels of pro-inflammatory cytokine IFN-γ released upon in vitro stimulation. These findings suggest that the generation of Tregs may be promoted by naïve CD4+ T cell: neuron interaction through the release of neuropeptide CGRP.

  15. Serum Response Factor Mediated Gene Activity in Physiological and Pathological Processes of Neuronal Motility

    PubMed Central

    Knöll, Bernd

    2011-01-01

    In recent years, the transcription factor serum response factor (SRF) was shown to contribute to various physiological processes linked to neuronal motility. The latter include cell migration, axon guidance, and, e.g., synapse function relying on cytoskeletal dynamics, neurite outgrowth, axonal and dendritic differentiation, growth cone motility, and neurite branching. SRF teams up with myocardin related transcription factors (MRTFs) and ternary complex factors (TCFs) to mediate cellular actin cytoskeletal dynamics and the immediate-early gene (IEG) response, a bona fide indicator of neuronal activation. Herein, I will discuss how SRF and cofactors might modulate physiological processes of neuronal motility. Further, potential mechanisms engaged by neurite growth promoting molecules and axon guidance cues to target SRF’s transcriptional machinery in physiological neuronal motility will be presented. Of note, altered cytoskeletal dynamics and rapid initiation of an IEG response are a hallmark of injured neurons in various neurological disorders. Thus, SRF and its MRTF and TCF cofactors might emerge as a novel trio modulating peripheral and central axon regeneration. PMID:22164132

  16. Ultrasound Gene Transfer into Fibroblast Cells using Microbubbles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2009-04-01

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

  17. Effect of Ovarian Hormones on Genes Promoting Dendritic Spines In Laser Captured Serotonin Neurons From Macaques

    PubMed Central

    Bethea, Cynthia L.; Reddy, Arubala P.

    2009-01-01

    Dendritic spines are the elementary structural units of neuronal plasticity and the cascades that promote dendrite spine remodeling center on Rho GTPases and downstream effectors of actin dynamics. In a model of hormone replacement therapy (HT), we sought the effect of estradiol (E) and progesterone (P) on gene expression in these cascades in laser captured serotonin neurons from rhesus macaques with cDNA array analysis. Spayed rhesus macaques were treated with either placebo, E or E+P via Silastic implant for 1 month prior to euthanasia after which the midbrain was obtained, sectioned and immunostained for TPH. TPH-positive neurons were laser captured using an Arcturus Laser Dissection Microscope (PixCell II). RNA from laser captured serotonin neurons (n=2 animals/treatment) was hybridized to Rhesus Affymetrix GeneChips. There was a significant change in 744 probe sets (ANOVA, p < 0.05), but 10,493 probe sets exhibited a 2-fold or greater change. Pivotal changes in pathways leading to dendrite spine proliferation and transformation included 2-fold or greater increases in expression of the Rho GTPases called CDC42, Rac1 and RhoA. In addition, 2-fold or greater increases occurred in downstream effectors of actin dynamics including PAK1, ROCK, PIP5K, IRSp53, WASP, WAVE, MLC, cofilin, gelsolin, profilin and 3 subunits of ARP2/3. Finally, 2-fold or greater decreases occurred in CRIPAK, LIMK2 and MLCK. The regulation of RhoA, Rac1, CDC42, ROCK, PIP5k, IRSp53, WASP, WAVE, LIMK2, CRIPAK1, MLCK, ARP2/3 subunit 3, gelsolin, profilin and cofilin was confirmed with nested qRT-PCR on laser captured RNA (n=3 animals/treatment). The data indicate that ovarian steroids target gene expression of the Rho GTPases and pivotal downstream proteins that in turn, would promote dendritic spine proliferation and stabilization on serotonin neurons of the dorsal raphe nucleus. PMID:19687787

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2006-01-01

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

  19. Mapping Gene Expression in Excitatory Neurons during Hippocampal Late-Phase Long-Term Potentiation

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Patrick B.; Kawaguchi, Riki; Blum, Charles; Achiro, Jennifer M.; Coppola, Giovanni; O'Dell, Thomas J.; Martin, Kelsey C.

    2017-01-01

    The persistence of long-lasting changes in synaptic connectivity that underlie long-term memory require new RNA and protein synthesis. To elucidate the temporal pattern of gene expression that gives rise to long-lasting neuronal plasticity, we analyzed differentially-expressed (DE) RNAs in mouse hippocampal slices following induction of late phase long-term potentiation (L-LTP) specifically within pyramidal excitatory neurons using Translating Ribosome Affinity Purification RNA sequencing (TRAP-seq). We detected time-dependent changes in up- and down-regulated ribosome-associated mRNAs over 2 h following L-LTP induction, with minimal overlap of DE transcripts between time points. TRAP-seq revealed greater numbers of DE transcripts and magnitudes of LTP-induced changes than RNA-seq of all cell types in the hippocampus. Neuron-enriched transcripts had greater changes at the ribosome-loading level than the total RNA level, while RNA-seq identified many non-neuronal DE mRNAs. Our results highlight the importance of considering both time course and cell-type specificity in activity-dependent gene expression during memory formation. PMID:28275336

  20. Fast targeted gene transfection and optogenetic modification of single neurons using femtosecond laser irradiation

    PubMed Central

    Antkowiak, Maciej; Torres-Mapa, Maria Leilani; Witts, Emily C.; Miles, Gareth B.; Dholakia, Kishan; Gunn-Moore, Frank J.

    2013-01-01

    A prevailing problem in neuroscience is the fast and targeted delivery of DNA into selected neurons. The development of an appropriate methodology would enable the transfection of multiple genes into the same cell or different genes into different neighboring cells as well as rapid cell selective functionalization of neurons. Here, we show that optimized femtosecond optical transfection fulfills these requirements. We also demonstrate successful optical transfection of channelrhodopsin-2 in single selected neurons. We extend the functionality of this technique for wider uptake by neuroscientists by using fast three-dimensional laser beam steering enabling an image-guided “point-and-transfect” user-friendly transfection of selected cells. A sub-second transfection timescale per cell makes this method more rapid by at least two orders of magnitude when compared to alternative single-cell transfection techniques. This novel technology provides the ability to carry out large-scale cell selective genetic studies on neuronal ensembles and perform rapid genetic programming of neural circuits. PMID:24257461

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

    PubMed Central

    Pang, Tin Yau; Lercher, Martin J.

    2017-01-01

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

  2. A Single Vector Platform for High-Level Gene Transduction of Central Neurons: Adeno-Associated Virus Vector Equipped with the Tet-Off System

    PubMed Central

    Sohn, Jaerin; Takahashi, Megumu; Okamoto, Shinichiro; Ishida, Yoko; Furuta, Takahiro

    2017-01-01

    Visualization of neurons is indispensable for the investigation of neuronal circuits in the central nervous system. Virus vectors have been widely used for labeling particular subsets of neurons, and the adeno-associated virus (AAV) vector has gained popularity as a tool for gene transfer. Here, we developed a single AAV vector Tet-Off platform, AAV-SynTetOff, to improve the gene-transduction efficiency, specifically in neurons. The platform is composed of regulator and response elements in a single AAV genome. After infection of Neuro-2a cells with the AAV-SynTetOff vector, the transduction efficiency of green fluorescent protein (GFP) was increased by approximately 2- and 15-fold relative to the conventional AAV vector with the human cytomegalovirus (CMV) or human synapsin I (SYN) promoter, respectively. We then injected the AAV vectors into the mouse neostriatum. GFP expression in the neostriatal neurons infected with the AAV-SynTetOff vector was approximately 40-times higher than that with the CMV or SYN promoter. By adding a membrane-targeting signal to GFP, the axon fibers of neostriatal neurons were clearly visualized. In contrast, by attaching somatodendritic membrane-targeting signals to GFP, axon fiber labeling was mostly suppressed. Furthermore, we prepared the AAV-SynTetOff vector, which simultaneously expressed somatodendritic membrane-targeted GFP and membrane-targeted red fluorescent protein (RFP). After injection of the vector into the neostriatum, the cell bodies and dendrites of neostriatal neurons were labeled with both GFP and RFP, whereas the axons in the projection sites were labeled only with RFP. Finally, we applied this vector to vasoactive intestinal polypeptide-positive (VIP+) neocortical neurons, one of the subclasses of inhibitory neurons in the neocortex, in layer 2/3 of the mouse primary somatosensory cortex. The results revealed the differential distribution of the somatodendritic and axonal structures at the population level. The

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

    DOE PAGES

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

    2015-03-02

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

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    2015-03-02

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

  5. A Subset of Autism-Associated Genes Regulate the Structural Stability of Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Yu-Chih; Frei, Jeannine A.; Kilander, Michaela B. C.; Shen, Wenjuan; Blatt, Gene J.

    2016-01-01

    Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) comprises a range of neurological conditions that affect individuals’ ability to communicate and interact with others. People with ASD often exhibit marked qualitative difficulties in social interaction, communication, and behavior. Alterations in neurite arborization and dendritic spine morphology, including size, shape, and number, are hallmarks of almost all neurological conditions, including ASD. As experimental evidence emerges in recent years, it becomes clear that although there is broad heterogeneity of identified autism risk genes, many of them converge into similar cellular pathways, including those regulating neurite outgrowth, synapse formation and spine stability, and synaptic plasticity. These mechanisms together regulate the structural stability of neurons and are vulnerable targets in ASD. In this review, we discuss the current understanding of those autism risk genes that affect the structural connectivity of neurons. We sub-categorize them into (1) cytoskeletal regulators, e.g., motors and small RhoGTPase regulators; (2) adhesion molecules, e.g., cadherins, NCAM, and neurexin superfamily; (3) cell surface receptors, e.g., glutamatergic receptors and receptor tyrosine kinases; (4) signaling molecules, e.g., protein kinases and phosphatases; and (5) synaptic proteins, e.g., vesicle and scaffolding proteins. Although the roles of some of these genes in maintaining neuronal structural stability are well studied, how mutations contribute to the autism phenotype is still largely unknown. Investigating whether and how the neuronal structure and function are affected when these genes are mutated will provide insights toward developing effective interventions aimed at improving the lives of people with autism and their families. PMID:27909399

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

    PubMed Central

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

    1998-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-08-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Yang, Y W; Yang, J C

    1997-02-01

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

  9. Statistical Mechanics of Horizontal Gene Transfer in Evolutionary Ecology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chia, Nicholas; Goldenfeld, Nigel

    2011-04-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  12. Precision Modulation of Neurodegenerative Disease-Related Gene Expression in Human iPSC-Derived Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Heman-Ackah, Sabrina Mahalia; Bassett, Andrew Roger; Wood, Matthew John Andrew

    2016-01-01

    The ability to reprogram adult somatic cells into induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) and the subsequent development of protocols for their differentiation into disease-relevant cell types have enabled in-depth molecular analyses of multiple disease states as hitherto impossible. Neurons differentiated from patient-specific iPSCs provide a means to recapitulate molecular phenotypes of neurodegenerative diseases in vitro. However, it remains challenging to conduct precise manipulations of gene expression in iPSC-derived neurons towards modeling complex human neurological diseases. The application of CRISPR/Cas9 to mammalian systems is revolutionizing the utilization of genome editing technologies in the study of molecular contributors to the pathogenesis of numerous diseases. Here, we demonstrate that CRISPRa and CRISPRi can be used to exert precise modulations of endogenous gene expression in fate-committed iPSC-derived neurons. This highlights CRISPRa/i as a major technical advancement in accessible tools for evaluating the specific contributions of critical neurodegenerative disease-related genes to neuropathogenesis. PMID:27341390

  13. Tet1 is critical for neuronal activity-regulated gene expression and memory extinction.

    PubMed

    Rudenko, Andrii; Dawlaty, Meelad M; Seo, Jinsoo; Cheng, Albert W; Meng, Jia; Le, Thuc; Faull, Kym F; Jaenisch, Rudolf; Tsai, Li-Huei

    2013-09-18

    The ten-eleven translocation (Tet) family of methylcytosine dioxygenases catalyze oxidation of 5-methylcytosine (5mC) to 5-hydroxymethylcytosine (5hmC) and promote DNA demethylation. Despite the abundance of 5hmC and Tet proteins in the brain, little is known about the functions of the neuronal Tet enzymes. Here, we analyzed Tet1 knockout mice (Tet1KO) and found downregulation of multiple neuronal activity-regulated genes, including Npas4, c-Fos, and Arc. Furthermore, Tet1KO animals exhibited abnormal hippocampal long-term depression and impaired memory extinction. Analysis of the key regulatory gene, Npas4, indicated that its promoter region, containing multiple CpG dinucleotides, is hypermethylated in both naive Tet1KO mice and after extinction training. Such hypermethylation may account for the diminished expression of Npas4 itself and its downstream targets, impairing transcriptional programs underlying cognitive processes. In summary, we show that neuronal Tet1 regulates normal DNA methylation levels, expression of activity-regulated genes, synaptic plasticity, and memory extinction.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-01-01

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

  16. Fear conditioning leads to alteration in specific genes expression in cortical and thalamic neurons that project to the lateral amygdala.

    PubMed

    Katz, Ira K; Lamprecht, Raphael

    2015-02-01

    RNA transcription is needed for memory formation. However, the ability to identify genes whose expression is altered by learning is greatly impaired because of methodological difficulties in profiling gene expression in specific neurons involved in memory formation. Here, we report a novel approach to monitor the expression of genes after learning in neurons in specific brain pathways needed for memory formation. In this study, we aimed to monitor gene expression after fear learning. We retrogradely labeled discrete thalamic neurons that project to the lateral amygdala (LA) of rats. The labeled neurons were dissected, using laser microdissection microscopy, after fear conditioning learning or unpaired training. The RNAs from the dissected neurons were subjected to microarray analysis. The levels of selected RNAs detected by the microarray analysis to be altered by fear conditioning were also assessed by nanostring analysis. We observed that the expression of genes involved in the regulation of translation, maturation and degradation of proteins was increased 6 h after fear conditioning compared to unpaired or naïve trained rats. These genes were not expressed 24 h after training or in cortical neurons that project to the LA. The expression of genes involved in transcription regulation and neuronal development was altered after fear conditioning learning in the cortical-LA pathway. The present study provides key information on the identity of genes expressed in discrete thalamic and cortical neurons that project to the LA after fear conditioning. Such an approach could also serve to identify gene products as targets for the development of a new generation of therapeutic agents that could be aimed to functionally identified brain circuits to treat memory-related disorders.

  17. Viral gene transfer of APPsα rescues synaptic failure in an Alzheimer's disease mouse model.

    PubMed

    Fol, Romain; Braudeau, Jerome; Ludewig, Susann; Abel, Tobias; Weyer, Sascha W; Roederer, Jan-Peter; Brod, Florian; Audrain, Mickael; Bemelmans, Alexis-Pierre; Buchholz, Christian J; Korte, Martin; Cartier, Nathalie; Müller, Ulrike C

    2016-02-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is characterized by synaptic failure, dendritic and axonal atrophy, neuronal death and progressive loss of cognitive functions. It is commonly assumed that these deficits arise due to β-amyloid accumulation and plaque deposition. However, increasing evidence indicates that loss of physiological APP functions mediated predominantly by neurotrophic APPsα produced in the non-amyloidogenic α-secretase pathway may contribute to AD pathogenesis. Upregulation of APPsα production via induction of α-secretase might, however, be problematic as this may also affect substrates implicated in tumorigenesis. Here, we used a gene therapy approach to directly overexpress APPsα in the brain using AAV-mediated gene transfer and explored its potential to rescue structural, electrophysiological and behavioral deficits in APP/PS1∆E9 AD model mice. Sustained APPsα overexpression in aged mice with already preexisting pathology and amyloidosis restored synaptic plasticity and partially rescued spine density deficits. Importantly, AAV-APPsα treatment also resulted in a functional rescue of spatial reference memory in the Morris water maze. Moreover, we demonstrate a significant reduction of soluble Aβ species and plaque load. In addition, APPsα induced the recruitment of microglia with a ramified morphology into the vicinity of plaques and upregulated IDE and TREM2 expression suggesting enhanced plaque clearance. Collectively, these data indicate that APPsα can mitigate synaptic and cognitive deficits, despite established pathology. Increasing APPsα may therefore be of therapeutic relevance for AD.

  18. Genes regulated in neurons undergoing transcription-dependent apoptosis belong to signaling pathways rather than the apoptotic machinery.

    PubMed

    Desagher, Solange; Severac, Dany; Lipkin, Alexey; Bernis, Cyril; Ritchie, William; Le Digarcher, Anne; Journot, Laurent

    2005-02-18

    Neuronal apoptosis has been shown to require de novo RNA/protein synthesis. However, very few genes whose expression is necessary for inducing apoptosis have been identified so far. To systematically identify such genes, we have used genome-scale, long oligonucleotide microarrays and characterized the gene expression profile of cerebellar granule neurons in the early phase of apoptosis elicited by KCl deprivation. We identified 368 significantly differentially expressed genes, including most of the genes previously reported to be transcriptionally regulated in this paradigm. In addition, we identified several hundreds of genes whose transcriptional regulation has never been associated with neuronal apoptosis. We used automated Gene Ontology annotation, analysis of promoter sequences, and statistical tools to characterize these regulations. Although differentially expressed genes included some components of the apoptotic machinery, this functional category was not significantly over-represented among regulated genes. On the other hand, categories related to signal transduction were the most significantly over-represented group. This indicates that the apoptotic machinery is mainly constitutive, whereas molecular pathways that lead to the activation of apoptotic components are transcriptionally regulated. In particular, we show for the first time that signaling pathways known to be involved in the control of neuronal survival are regulated at the transcriptional level and not only by post-translational mechanisms. Moreover, our approach provides insights into novel transcription factors and novel mechanisms, such as the unfolded protein response and cell adhesion, that may contribute to the induction of neuronal apoptosis.

  19. Highly efficient cell-type-specific gene inactivation reveals a key function for the Drosophila FUS homolog cabeza in neurons.

    PubMed

    Frickenhaus, Marie; Wagner, Marina; Mallik, Moushami; Catinozzi, Marica; Storkebaum, Erik

    2015-03-16

    To expand the rich genetic toolkit of Drosophila melanogaster, we evaluated whether introducing FRT or LoxP sites in endogenous genes could allow for cell-type-specific gene inactivation in both dividing and postmitotic cells by GAL4-driven expression of FLP or Cre recombinase. For proof of principle, conditional alleles were generated for cabeza (caz), the Drosophila homolog of human FUS, a gene implicated in the neurodegenerative disorders amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and frontotemporal dementia (FTD). Upon selective expression in neurons or muscle, both FLP and Cre mediated caz inactivation in all neurons or muscle cells, respectively. Neuron-selective caz inactivation resulted in failure of pharate adult flies to eclose from the pupal case, and adult escapers displayed motor performance defects and reduced life span. Due to Cre-toxicity, FLP/FRT is the preferred system for cell-type-specific gene inactivation, and this strategy outperforms RNAi-mediated knock-down. Furthermore, the GAL80 target system allowed for temporal control over gene inactivation, as induction of FLP expression from the adult stage onwards still inactivated caz in >99% of neurons. Remarkably, selective caz inactivation in adult neurons did not affect motor performance and life span, indicating that neuronal caz is required during development, but not for maintenance of adult neuronal function.

  20. Gene-transfer study approval awaits more data

    SciTech Connect

    Marwick, C.

    1988-11-18

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

  1. Multiple Inter-Kingdom Horizontal Gene Transfers in the Evolution of the Phosphoenolpyruvate Carboxylase Gene Family

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Wen; Su, Bing

    2012-01-01

    Pepcase is a gene encoding phosphoenolpyruvate carboxylase that exists in bacteria, archaea and plants,playing an important role in plant metabolism and development. Most plants have two or more pepcase genes belonging to two gene sub-families, while only one gene exists in other organisms. Previous research categorized one plant pepcase gene as plant-type pepcase (PTPC) while the other as bacteria-type pepcase (BTPC) because of its similarity with the pepcase gene found in bacteria. Phylogenetic reconstruction showed that PTPC is the ancestral lineage of plant pepcase, and that all bacteria, protistpepcase and BTPC in plants are derived from a lineage of pepcase closely related with PTPC in algae. However, their phylogeny contradicts the species tree and traditional chronology of organism evolution. Because the diversification of bacteria occurred much earlier than the origin of plants, presumably all bacterialpepcase derived from the ancestral PTPC of algal plants after divergingfrom the ancestor of vascular plant PTPC. To solve this contradiction, we reconstructed the phylogeny of pepcase gene family. Our result showed that both PTPC and BTPC are derived from an ancestral lineage of gamma-proteobacteriapepcases, possibly via an ancient inter-kingdom horizontal gene transfer (HGT) from bacteria to the eukaryotic common ancestor of plants, protists and cellular slime mold. Our phylogenetic analysis also found 48other pepcase genes originated from inter-kingdom HGTs. These results imply that inter-kingdom HGTs played important roles in the evolution of the pepcase gene family and furthermore that HGTsare a more frequent evolutionary event than previouslythought. PMID:23251445

  2. Cell type-specific gene expression of midbrain dopaminergic neurons reveals molecules involved in their vulnerability and protection

    PubMed Central

    Chung, Chee Yeun; Seo, Hyemyung; Sonntag, Kai Christian; Brooks, Andrew; Lin, Ling; Isacson, Ole

    2008-01-01

    Molecular differences between dopamine (DA) neurons may explain why the mesostriatal DA neurons in the A9 region preferentially degenerate in Parkinson’s disease (PD) and toxic models, whereas the adjacent A10 region mesolimbic and mesocortical DA neurons are relatively spared. To characterize innate physiological differences between A9 and A10 DA neurons, we determined gene expression profiles in these neurons in the adult mouse by laser capture microdissection, microarray analysis and real-time PCR. We found 42 genes relatively elevated in A9 DA neurons, whereas 61 genes were elevated in A10 DA neurons [>2-fold; false discovery rate (FDR) <1%]. Genes of interest for further functional analysis were selected by criteria of (i) fold differences in gene expression, (ii) real-time PCR validation and (iii) potential roles in neurotoxic or protective biochemical pathways. Three A9-elevated molecules [G-protein coupled inwardly rectifying K channel 2 (GIRK2), adenine nucleotide translocator 2 (ANT-2) and the growth factor IGF-1] and three A10-elevated peptides (GRP, CGRP and PACAP) were further examined in both α-synuclein overexpressing PC12 (PC12-αSyn) cells and rat primary ventral mesencephalic (VM) cultures exposed to MPP+ neurotoxicity. GIRK2-positive DA neurons were more vulnerable to MPP+ toxicity and overexpression of GIRK2 increased the vulnerability of PC12-αSyn cells to the toxin. Blocking of ANT decreased vulnerability to MPP+ in both cell culture systems. Exposing cells to IGF-1, GRP and PACAP decreased vulnerability of both cell types to MPP+, whereas CGRP protected PC12-αSyn cells but not primary VM DA neurons. These results indicate that certain differentially expressed molecules in A9 and A10 DA neurons may play key roles in their relative vulnerability to toxins and PD. PMID:15888489

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-08-22

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

  5. The use of an optimized chimeric envelope glycoprotein enhances the efficiency of retrograde gene transfer of a pseudotyped lentiviral vector in the primate brain.

    PubMed

    Tanabe, Soshi; Inoue, Ken-Ichi; Tsuge, Hitomi; Uezono, Shiori; Nagaya, Kiyomi; Fijiwara, Maki; Kato, Shigeki; Kobayashi, Kazuto; Takada, Masahiko

    2017-02-28

    Lentiviral vectors have been used not only for various basic research experiments, but also for a wide range of gene therapy trials in animal models. The development of a pseudotyped lentiviral vector with the property of retrograde infection allows us to introduce foreign genes into neurons that are localized in regions innervating the site of vector injection. Here, we report the efficiency of retrograde gene transfer of a recently developed FuG-E pseudotyped lentiviral vector in the primate brain by comparing its transduction pattern with that of the parental FuG-C pseudotyped vector. After injection of the FuG-E vector encoding green fluorescent protein (GFP) into the striatum of macaque monkeys, many GFP-immunoreactive neurons were found in regions projecting to the striatum, such as the cerebral cortex, thalamus, and substantia nigra. Quantitative analysis revealed that in all regions, the number of neurons retrogradely transduced with the FuG-E vector was larger than in the FuG-C vector injection case. It was also confirmed that the FuG-E vector displayed explicit neuronal specificity to the same extent as the FuG-C vector. This vector might promote approaches to pathway-selective gene manipulation and provide a powerful tool for effective gene therapy trials against neurological disorders through enhanced retrograde delivery.

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

    PubMed

    Tarantal, Alice F; Skarlatos, Sonia I

    2012-11-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Cai, Haiyuan

    2012-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-07-01

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

  10. Glycosaminoglycan storage in cultured neonatal murine mucopolysaccharidosis type VII neuroglial cells and correction by beta-glucuronidase gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Taylor, R M; Wolfe, J H

    1997-05-01

    The inherited deficiency of beta-glucuronidase activity causes the lysosomal storage disorder mucopolysaccharidosis (MPS) type VII (Sly disease). The sequential catabolism of glycosaminoglycans in lysosomes is blocked, and undegraded substrates accumulate in cells of many tissues, including neurons and glia in the brain. To evaluate the deficient metabolic pathway, primary cultures of mixed brain cells were established from newborn MPS VII mice. beta-Glucuronidase levels and glycosaminoglycan accumulation were studied in normal, carrier, and MPS VII cells. Retroviral vector-mediated transfer of a normal beta-glucuronidase cDNA corrected the enzymatic deficiency in MPS VII cells and restored glycosaminoglycan catabolism to normal. High levels of beta-glucuronidase expression were sustained in vector-corrected nondividing glial cell cultures for >2 months. These studies provide an in vitro model for evaluating somatic gene transfer in neural cells affected in mucopolysaccharidoses.

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

    PubMed

    Knie, Nils; Polsakiewicz, Monika; Knoop, Volker

    2015-03-01

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

  12. Hox Genes Promote Neuronal Subtype Diversification through Posterior Induction in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Chaogu; Diaz-Cuadros, Margarete; Chalfie, Martin

    2015-11-04

    Although Hox genes specify the differentiation of neuronal subtypes along the anterior-posterior axis, their mode of action is not entirely understood. Using two subtypes of the touch receptor neurons (TRNs) in C. elegans, we found that a "posterior induction" mechanism underlies the Hox control of terminal neuronal differentiation. The anterior subtype maintains a default TRN state, whereas the posterior subtype undergoes further morphological and transcriptional specification induced by the posterior Hox proteins, mainly EGL-5/Abd-B. Misexpression of the posterior Hox proteins transformed the anterior TRN subtype toward a posterior identity both morphologically and genetically. The specification of the posterior subtype requires EGL-5-induced repression of TALE cofactors, which antagonize EGL-5 functions, and the activation of rfip-1, a component of recycling endosomes, which mediates Hox activities by promoting subtype-specific neurite outgrowth. Finally, EGL-5 is required for subtype-specific circuit formation by acting in both the sensory neuron and downstream interneuron to promote functional connectivity.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-03-17

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  15. Novel mutations in the CLN6 gene causing a variant late infantile neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis.

    PubMed

    Teixeira, Carla A; Espinola, Janice; Huo, Liang; Kohlschütter, Johannes; Persaud Sawin, Dixie-Ann; Minassian, Berge; Bessa, Carlos J P; Guimarães, A; Stephan, Dietrich A; Sá Miranda, Maria Clara; MacDonald, Marcy E; Ribeiro, Maria Gil; Boustany, Rose-Mary N

    2003-05-01

    The neuronal ceroid lipofuscinoses (NCLs) are a heterogeneous group of autosomal recessive neurodegenerative diseases comprising Batten and other related diseases plus numerous variants. They are characterized by progressive neuronal cell death. The CLN6 gene was recently identified, mutations in which cause one of the variant late infantile forms of NCL (vLINCL). We describe four novel mutations in the CLN6 gene. This brings the total number of CLN6 mutations known to 11 in 38 families. This suggests that the CLN6 gene may be highly mutable. An American patient of Irish/French/Native American origin was heterozygous for a 4-bp insertion (c.267_268insAACG) in exon 3. The other allele had a point mutation (c.898T>C) in exon 7 resulting in a W300R amino acid change. Two Trinidadian siblings of Indian origin were homozygous for a mutation at the 5' donor splice site of exon 4 (IVS4+1G>T), affecting the first base of the invariant GT at the beginning of intron 4. The fourth novel mutation, a double deletion of 4 bp and 1 bp in exon 7 (c.829_832delGTCG;c.837delG), was identified in a Portuguese patient heterozygous for the I154del Portuguese CLN6 mutation. Four of the 11 mutations identified are in exon 4. Three Portuguese patients with clinical profiles similar to CLN6 patients without defects in CLN6 or other known NCL genes are described. We conclude the following: 1) the CLN6 gene may be a highly mutable gene; 2) exon 4 must code for a segment of the protein crucial for function; 3) vLINCL disease in Portugal is genetically heterogeneous; 4) the I154del accounts for 81.25% of affected CLN6 Portuguese alleles; and 5) three vLINCL Portuguese patients may have defects in a new NCL gene.

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

    PubMed Central

    Bertani, Giuseppe

    1999-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-08-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2017-01-17

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

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

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bertani, G.

    1999-01-01

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

  20. Gene expression levels assessed by CA1 pyramidal neuron and regional hippocampal dissections in Alzheimer’s disease

    PubMed Central

    Ginsberg, Stephen D.; Alldred, Melissa J.; Che, Shaoli

    2011-01-01

    To evaluate molecular signatures of an individual cell type in comparison to the associated region relevant towards understanding the pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s disease (AD), CA1 pyramidal neurons and the surrounding hippocampal formation were microaspirated via laser capture microdissection (LCM) from neuropathologically confirmed AD and age-matched control (CTR) subjects as well as from wild type mouse brain using single population RNA amplification methodology coupled with custom-designed microarray analysis with real-time quantitative polymerase-chain reaction (qPCR) validation. CA1 pyramidal neurons predominantly displayed downregulation of classes of transcripts related to synaptic transmission in AD versus CTR. Regional hippocampal dissections displayed downregulation of several overlapping genes found in the CA1 neuronal population related to neuronal expression, as well as upregulation of select transcripts indicative of admixed cell types including glial-associated markers and immediate-early and cell death genes. Gene level distributions observed in CA1 neurons and regional hippocampal dissections in wild type mice paralleled expression mosaics seen in postmortem human tissue. Microarray analysis was validated in qPCR studies using human postmortem brain tissue and CA1 sector and regional hippocampal dissections obtained from a mouse model of AD/Down syndrome (Ts65Dn mice) and normal disomic (2N) littermates. Classes of transcripts that have a greater percentage of the overall hybridization signal intensity within single neurons tended to be genes related to neuronal communication. The converse was also found, as classes of transcripts such as glial-associated markers were under represented in CA1 pyramidal neuron expression profiles relative to regional hippocampal dissections. These observations highlight a dilution effect that is likely to occur in conventional regional microarray and qPCR studies. Thus, single population studies of specific

  1. Engraftable human neural stem cells respond to developmental cues, replace neurons, and express foreign genes.

    PubMed

    Flax, J D; Aurora, S; Yang, C; Simonin, C; Wills, A M; Billinghurst, L L; Jendoubi, M; Sidman, R L; Wolfe, J H; Kim, S U; Snyder, E Y

    1998-11-01

    Stable clones of neural stem cells (NSCs) have been isolated from the human fetal telencephalon. These self-renewing clones give rise to all fundamental neural lineages in vitro. Following transplantation into germinal zones of the newborn mouse brain they participate in aspects of normal development, including migration along established migratory pathways to disseminated central nervous system regions, differentiation into multiple developmentally and regionally appropriate cell types, and nondisruptive interspersion with host progenitors and their progeny. These human NSCs can be genetically engineered and are capable of expressing foreign transgenes in vivo. Supporting their gene therapy potential, secretory products from NSCs can correct a prototypical genetic metabolic defect in neurons and glia in vitro. The human NSCs can also replace specific deficient neuronal populations. Cryopreservable human NSCs may be propagated by both epigenetic and genetic means that are comparably safe and effective. By analogy to rodent NSCs, these observations may allow the development of NSC transplantation for a range of disorders.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2010-01-01

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

  3. The mec-7 beta-tubulin gene of Caenorhabditis elegans is expressed primarily in the touch receptor neurons.

    PubMed Central

    Hamelin, M; Scott, I M; Way, J C; Culotti, J G

    1992-01-01

    Mutants of the mec-7 beta-tubulin gene of Caenorhabditis elegans lack the large diameter 15-protofilament microtubules normally found only in the set of six touch receptor neurons. Both a mec-7-lacZ reporter gene and affinity-purified anti-mec-7 antibodies were used to show that mec-7 is expressed primarily in the touch neurons. These data are consistent with a possible instructive role for the mec-7 tubulin in determining microtubule protofilament number. The antibodies and the mec-7-lacZ transgene were also used to examine mec-7 expression in mutants affecting the generation, differentiation or maintenance of the touch neurons. Decreased expression was observed in mutants of unc-86 and mec-3, genes that encode transcription factors essential for touch receptor neuron generation and differentiation, respectively. Images PMID:1639062

  4. Structure and organization of the human survival motor neurone (SMN) gene

    SciTech Connect

    Buerglen, L.; Lefebvre, S.; Clermont, O.

    1996-03-05

    Spinal muscular atrophies (SMA) are characterized by degeneration of the anterior horn cells of the spinal cord and represent the second most common fatal autosomal-recessive disorder after cystic fibrosis. We have previously identified the survival motor neurone gene (SMN), a SMA-determining gene in the 5q13 region encoding a hitherto unknown protein. In this report, we describe the organization and structure of SMN. The gene is {congruent}20 kb in length and consists of nine exons. Sequence data of the 5{prime} end of the gene show that the dinucleotide repeat C272 is close to several putative binding sites for transcription factors, which will help to characterize the regulation of the SMN and {sup C}BCD541 gene expression. The availability of the human SMN and its highly homologous counterpart ({sup C}BCD541) gene structures and exon-intron boundaries will hopefully speed up the characterization of SMN gene mutations in SMA. 10 refs., 3 figs.

  5. scratch, a pan-neural gene encoding a zinc finger protein related to snail, promotes neuronal development.

    PubMed

    Roark, M; Sturtevant, M A; Emery, J; Vaessin, H; Grell, E; Bier, E

    1995-10-01

    The Drosophila scratch (scrt) gene is expressed in most or all neuronal precursor cells and encodes a predicted zinc finger transcription factor closely related to the product of the mesoderm determination gene snail (sna). Adult flies homozygous for scrt null alleles have a reduced number of photoreceptors in the eye, and embryos lacking the function of both scrt and the pan-neural gene deadpan (dpn), which encodes a basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) protein, exhibit a significant loss of neurons. Conversely, ectopic expression of a scrt transgene during embryonic and adult development leads to the production of supernumerary neurons. Consistent with scrt functioning as a transcription factor, various genes are more broadly expressed than normal in scrt null mutants. Reciprocally, these same genes are expressed at reduced levels in response to ectopic scrt expression. We propose that scrt promotes neuronal cell fates by suppressing expression of genes promoting non-neuronal cell fates. We discuss the similarities between the roles of the ancestrally related scrt, sna, and escargot (esc) genes in regulating cell fate choices.

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kagle, Jeanne; Hay, Anthony G.

    2007-01-01

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

  7. Neuronal K+/Cl- co-transporter (KCC2) transgenes lacking neurone restrictive silencer element recapitulate CNS neurone-specific expression and developmental up-regulation of endogenous KCC2 gene.

    PubMed

    Uvarov, Pavel; Pruunsild, Priit; Timmusk, Tõnis; Airaksinen, Matti S

    2005-11-01

    The K+/Cl- co-transporter KCC2 maintains the low intracellular chloride concentration required for fast synaptic inhibition and is exclusively expressed in neurones of the CNS. Here, we show that the KCC2 gene (alias SLC12a5) has multiple transcription start sites and characterize the activity of 6.8 kb of mouse KCC2 gene regulatory sequence (spanning 1.4 kb upstream from exon 1 to exon 2) using luciferase reporters. Overexpression of neurone-restrictive silencer factor repressed the reporter activity in vitro, apparently via a neurone restrictive silencer element (NRSE(KCC2)) within intron 1 of the mouse KCC2 gene. In transgenic mice, however, KCC2 reporters with or without deletion of the NRSE(KCC2) were expressed exclusively in neurones and predominantly in the CNS with a similar pattern and developmental up-regulation as endogenous KCC2. Moreover, a third transgene with just a 1.4-kb KCC2 promoter region lacking the NRSE(KCC2)-bearing intron 1 was still expressed predominantly in neural tissues. Thus, developmental up-regulation of the KCC2 gene does not require NRSE(KCC2) and the 1.4-kb KCC2 promoter is largely sufficient for neurone-specific expression of KCC2.

  8. Neuronal Gene Targets of NF-κB and Their Dysregulation in Alzheimer's Disease

    PubMed Central

    Snow, Wanda M.; Albensi, Benedict C.

    2016-01-01

    Although, better known for its role in inflammation, the transcription factor nuclear factor kappa B (NF-κB) has more recently been implicated in synaptic plasticity, learning, and memory. This has been, in part, to the discovery of its localization not just in glia, cells that are integral to mediating the inflammatory process in the brain, but also neurons. Several effectors of neuronal NF-κB have been identified, including calcium, inflammatory cytokines (i.e., tumor necrosis factor alpha), and the induction of experimental paradigms thought to reflect learning and memory at the cellular level (i.e., long-term potentiation). NF-κB is also activated after learning and memory formation in vivo. In turn, activation of NF-κB can elicit either suppression or activation of other genes. Studies are only beginning to elucidate the multitude of neuronal gene targets of NF-κB in the normal brain, but research to date has confirmed targets involved in a wide array of cellular processes, including cell signaling and growth, neurotransmission, redox signaling, and gene regulation. Further, several lines of research confirm dysregulation of NF-κB in Alzheimer's disease (AD), a disorder characterized clinically by a profound deficit in the ability to form new memories. AD-related neuropathology includes the characteristic amyloid beta plaque formation and neurofibrillary tangles. Although, such neuropathological findings have been hypothesized to contribute to memory deficits in AD, research has identified perturbations at the cellular and synaptic level that occur even prior to more gross pathologies, including transcriptional dysregulation. Indeed, synaptic disturbances appear to be a significant correlate of cognitive deficits in AD. Given the more recently identified role for NF-κB in memory and synaptic transmission in the normal brain, the expansive network of gene targets of NF-κB, and its dysregulation in AD, a thorough understanding of NF-κB-related signaling

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

    PubMed

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

    2005-10-01

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

  10. Autism genome-wide copy number variation reveals ubiquitin and neuronal genes

    PubMed Central

    Glessner, Joseph T.; Wang, Kai; Cai, Guiqing; Korvatska, Olena; Kim, Cecilia E.; Wood, Shawn; Zhang, Haitao; Estes, Annette; Brune, Camille W.; Bradfield, Jonathan P.; Imielinski, Marcin; Frackelton, Edward C.; Reichert, Jennifer; Crawford, Emily L.; Munson, Jeffrey; Sleiman, Patrick M. A.; Chiavacci, Rosetta; Annaiah, Kiran; Thomas, Kelly; Hou, Cuiping; Glaberson, Wendy; Flory, James; Otieno, Frederick; Garris, Maria; Soorya, Latha; Klei, Lambertus; Piven, Joseph; Meyer, Kacie J.; Anagnostou, Evdokia; Sakurai, Takeshi; Game, Rachel M.; Rudd, Danielle S.; Zurawiecki, Danielle; McDougle, Christopher J.; Davis, Lea K.; Miller, Judith; Posey, David J.; Michaels, Shana; Kolevzon, Alexander; Silverman, Jeremy M.; Bernier, Raphael; Levy, Susan E.; Schultz, Robert T.; Dawson, Geraldine; Owley, Thomas; McMahon, William M.; Wassink, Thomas H.; Sweeney, John A.; Nurnberger, John I.; Coon, Hilary; Sutcliffe, James S.; Minshew, Nancy J.; Grant, Struan F. A.; Bucan, Maja; Cook, Edwin H.; Buxbaum, Joseph D.; Devlin, Bernie; Schellenberg, Gerard D.; Hakonarson, Hakon

    2010-01-01

    Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are childhood neurodevelopmental disorders with complex genetic origins1–4. Previous studies focusing on candidate genes or genomic regions have identified several copy number variations (CNVs) that are associated with an increased risk of ASDs5–9. Here we present the results from a whole-genome CNV study on a cohort of 859 ASD cases and 1,409 healthy children of European ancestry who were genotyped with ~550,000 single nucleotide polymorphism markers, in an attempt to comprehensively identify CNVs conferring susceptibility to ASDs. Positive findings were evaluated in an independent cohort of 1,336 ASD cases and 1,110 controls of European ancestry. Besides previously reported ASD candidate genes, such as NRXN1 (ref. 10) and CNTN4 (refs 11, 12), several new susceptibility genes encoding neuronal cell-adhesion molecules, including NLGN1 and ASTN2, were enriched with CNVs in ASD cases compared to controls (P = 9.5 × 10−3). Furthermore, CNVs within or surrounding genes involved in the ubiquitin pathways, including UBE3A, PARK2, RFWD2 and FBXO40, were affected by CNVs not observed in controls (P = 3.3 × 10−3). We also identified duplications 55 kilobases upstream of complementary DNA AK123120 (P = 3.6 × 10−6). Although these variants may be individually rare, they target genes involved in neuronal cell-adhesion or ubiquitin degradation, indicating that these two important gene networks expressed within the central nervous system may contribute to the genetic susceptibility of ASD. PMID:19404257

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

    PubMed

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

    2002-08-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Boto, Luis

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Campochiaro, Peter A

    2011-05-01

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

  14. Phosphatidylserine immobilization of lentivirus for localized gene transfer

    PubMed Central

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

    2010-01-01

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

  15. Delayed dominant-negative TNF gene therapy halts progressive loss of nigral dopaminergic neurons in a rat model of Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Harms, Ashley S; Barnum, Christopher J; Ruhn, Kelly A; Varghese, Steve; Treviño, Isaac; Blesch, Armin; Tansey, Malú G

    2011-01-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder typified by the loss of dopaminergic (DA) neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc). Recent evidence indicates that neuroinflammation may play a critical role in the pathogenesis of PD, particularly tumor necrosis factor (TNF). We have previously shown that soluble TNF (solTNF) is required to mediate robust degeneration induced by 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) or lipopolysaccharide. What remains unknown is whether TNF inhibition can attenuate the delayed and progressive phase of neurodegeneration. To test this, rats were injected in the SNpc with lentivirus encoding dominant-negative TNF (lenti-DN-TNF) 2 weeks after receiving a 6-OHDA lesion. Remarkably, when examined 5 weeks after the initial 6-OHDA lesion, no further loss of nigral DA neurons was observed. Lenti-DN-TNF also attenuated microglial activation. Together, these data suggest that TNF is likely a critical mediator of nigral DA neuron death during the delayed and progressive phase of neurodegeneration, and that microglia may be the principal cell type involved. These promising findings provide compelling reasons to perform DN-TNF gene transfer studies in nonhuman primates with the long-term goal of using it in the clinic to prevent the delayed and progressive degeneration of DA neurons that gives rise to motor symptoms in PD.

  16. Delayed Dominant-Negative TNF Gene Therapy Halts Progressive Loss of Nigral Dopaminergic Neurons in a Rat Model of Parkinson's Disease

    PubMed Central

    Harms, Ashley S; Barnum, Christopher J; Ruhn, Kelly A; Varghese, Steve; Treviño, Isaac; Blesch, Armin; Tansey, Malú G

    2011-01-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder typified by the loss of dopaminergic (DA) neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc). Recent evidence indicates that neuroinflammation may play a critical role in the pathogenesis of PD, particularly tumor necrosis factor (TNF). We have previously shown that soluble TNF (solTNF) is required to mediate robust degeneration induced by 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) or lipopolysaccharide. What remains unknown is whether TNF inhibition can attenuate the delayed and progressive phase of neurodegeneration. To test this, rats were injected in the SNpc with lentivirus encoding dominant-negative TNF (lenti-DN-TNF) 2 weeks after receiving a 6-OHDA lesion. Remarkably, when examined 5 weeks after the initial 6-OHDA lesion, no further loss of nigral DA neurons was observed. Lenti-DN-TNF also attenuated microglial activation. Together, these data suggest that TNF is likely a critical mediator of nigral DA neuron death during the delayed and progressive phase of neurodegeneration, and that microglia may be the principal cell type involved. These promising findings provide compelling reasons to perform DN-TNF gene transfer studies in nonhuman primates with the long-term goal of using it in the clinic to prevent the delayed and progressive degeneration of DA neurons that gives rise to motor symptoms in PD. PMID:20959812

  17. The LIM-homeobox gene Lhx8 is required for the development of many cholinergic neurons in the mouse forebrain

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Yangu; Marín, Oscar; Hermesz, Edit; Powell, Aaron; Flames, Nuria; Palkovits, Miklós; Rubenstein, John L. R.; Westphal, Heiner

    2003-01-01

    Forebrain cholinergic neurons play important roles as striatal local circuit neurons and basal telencephalic projection neurons. The genetic mechanisms that control development of these neurons suggest that most of them are derived from the basal telencephalon where Lhx8, a LIM-homeobox gene, is expressed. Here we report that mice with a null mutation of Lhx8 are deficient in the development of forebrain cholinergic neurons. Lhx8 mutants lack the nucleus basalis, a major source of the cholinergic input to the cerebral cortex. In addition, the number of cholinergic neurons is reduced in several other areas of the subcortical forebrain in Lhx8 mutants, including the caudate-putamen, medial septal nucleus, nucleus of the diagonal band, and magnocellular preoptic nucleus. Although cholinergic neurons are not formed, initial steps in their specification appear to be preserved, as indicated by a presence of cells expressing a truncated Lhx8 mRNA and mRNA of the homeobox gene Gbx1. These results provide genetic evidence supporting an important role for Lhx8 in development of cholinergic neurons in the forebrain. PMID:12855770

  18. Zif268/egr1 gene controls the selection, maturation and functional integration of adult hippocampal newborn neurons by learning.

    PubMed

    Veyrac, Alexandra; Gros, Alexandra; Bruel-Jungerman, Elodie; Rochefort, Christelle; Kleine Borgmann, Felix B; Jessberger, Sebastian; Laroche, Serge

    2013-04-23

    New neurons are continuously added to the dentate gyrus of the adult mammalian brain. During the critical period of a few weeks after birth when newborn neurons progressively mature, a restricted fraction is competitively selected to survive in an experience-dependent manner, a condition for their contribution to memory processes. The mechanisms that control critical stages of experience-dependent functional incorporation of adult newborn neurons remain largely unknown. Here, we identify a unique transcriptional regulator of the functional integration of newborn neurons, the inducible immediate early gene zif268/egr1. We show that newborn neurons in zif268-KO mice undergo accelerated death during the critical period of 2-3 wk around their birth and exhibit deficient neurochemical and morphological maturation, including reduced GluR1 expression, increased NKCC1/KCC2b chloride cotransporter ratio, altered dendritic development, and marked spine growth defect. Investigating responsiveness of newborn neurons to activity-dependent expression of zif268 in learning, we demonstrate that in the absence of zif268, training in a spatial learning task during this critical period fails to recruit newborn neurons and promote their survival, leading to impaired long-term memory. This study reveals a previously unknown mechanism for the control of the selection, functional maturation, and experience-dependent recruitment of dentate gyrus newborn neurons that depends on the inducible immediate early gene zif268, processes that are critical for their contribution to hippocampal-dependent long-term memory.

  19. Exposure to ambient ultrafine particulate matter alters the expression of genes in primary human neurons.

    PubMed

    Solaimani, Parrisa; Saffari, Arian; Sioutas, Constantinos; Bondy, Stephen C; Campbell, Arezoo

    2017-01-01

    Exposure to ambient particulate matter (PM) has been associated with the onset of neurodevelopmental and neurodegenerative disorders, but the mechanism of toxicity remains unclear. To gain insight into this neurotoxicity, this study sought to examine global gene expression changes caused by exposure to ambient ultrafine PM. Microarray analysis was performed on primary human neurons derived from fetal brain tissue after a 24h exposure to 20μg/mL of ambient ultrafine particles. We found a majority of the changes in noncoding RNAs, which are involved in epigenetic regulation of gene expression, and thereby could impact the expression of several other protein coding gene targets. Although neurons from biologically different lot numbers were used, we found a significant increase in the expression of metallothionein 1A and 1F in all samples after exposure to particulate matter as confirmed by quantitative PCR. These metallothionein 1 proteins are responsible for neuroprotection after exposure to environmental insult but prolonged induction can be toxic. Epidemiological studies have reported that in utero exposure to ultrafine PM not only leads to neurodevelopmental and behavioral abnormalities, but may also predispose the progeny to neurodegenerative disease later in life by genetic imprinting. Our results pinpoint some of the PM-induced genetic changes that may underlie these findings.

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

    PubMed

    Wang, Xiujuan; Lavrov, Dennis V

    2011-04-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Dupont, Pierre-Yves; Cox, Murray P.

    2017-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    2008-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2005-06-01

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

  4. Neurophysiological Defects and Neuronal Gene Deregulation in Drosophila mir-124 Mutants

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Kailiang; Westholm, Jakub Orzechowski; Tsurudome, Kazuya; Hagen, Joshua W.; Lu, Yubing; Kohwi, Minoree; Betel, Doron; Gao, Fen-Biao; Haghighi, A. Pejmun; Doe, Chris Q.; Lai, Eric C.

    2012-01-01

    miR-124 is conserved in sequence and neuronal expression across the animal kingdom and is predicted to have hundreds of mRNA targets. Diverse defects in neural development and function were reported from miR-124 antisense studies in vertebrates, but a nematode knockout of mir-124 surprisingly lacked detectable phenotypes. To provide genetic insight from Drosophila, we deleted its single mir-124 locus and found that it is dispensable for gross aspects of neural specification and differentiation. On the other hand, we detected a variety of mutant phenotypes that were rescuable by a mir-124 genomic transgene, including short lifespan, increased dendrite variation, impaired larval locomotion, and aberrant synaptic release at the NMJ. These phenotypes reflect extensive requirements of miR-124 even under optimal culture conditions. Comparison of the transcriptomes of cells from wild-type and mir-124 mutant animals, purified on the basis of mir-124 promoter activity, revealed broad upregulation of direct miR-124 targets. However, in contrast to the proposed mutual exclusion model for miR-124 function, its functional targets were relatively highly expressed in miR-124–expressing cells and were not enriched in genes annotated with epidermal expression. A notable aspect of the direct miR-124 network was coordinate targeting of five positive components in the retrograde BMP signaling pathway, whose activation in neurons increases synaptic release at the NMJ, similar to mir-124 mutants. Derepression of the direct miR-124 target network also had many secondary effects, including over-activity of other post-transcriptional repressors and a net incomplete transition from a neuroblast to a neuronal gene expression signature. Altogether, these studies demonstrate complex consequences of miR-124 loss on neural gene expression and neurophysiology. PMID:22347817

  5. Axon Growth and Guidance Genes Identify Nascent, Immature, and Mature Olfactory Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    McIntyre, Jeremy C.; Titlow, William B.; McClintock, Timothy S.

    2016-01-01

    Neurogenesis of projection neurons requires that axons be initiated, extended, and connected. Differences in the expression of axon growth and guidance genes must drive these events, but comprehensively characterizing these differences in a single neuronal type has not been accomplished. Guided by a catalog of gene expression in olfactory sensory neurons (OSNs), in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry revealed that Cxcr4 and Dbn1, two axon initiation genes, marked the developmental transition from basal progenitor cells to immature OSNs in the olfactory epithelium. The CXCR4 immunoreactivity of these nascent OSNs overlapped partially with markers of proliferation of basal progenitor cells and partially with immunoreactivity for GAP43, the canonical marker of immature OSNs. Intracellular guidance cue signaling transcripts Ablim1, Crmp1, Dypsl2, Dpysl3, Dpysl5, Gap43, Marcskl1, and Stmn1–4 were specific to, or much more abundant in, the immature OSN layer. Receptors that mediate axonal inhibition or repulsion tended to be expressed in both immature and mature OSNs (Plxna1, Plxna4, Nrp2, Efna5) or specifically in mature OSNs (Plxna3, Unc5b, Efna3, Epha5, Epha7), although some were specific to immature OSNs (Plxnb1, Plxnb2, Plxdc2, Nrp1). Cell adhesion molecules were expressed either by both immature and mature OSNs (Dscam, Ncam1, Ncam2, Nrxn1) or solely by immature OSNs (Chl1, Nfasc1, Dscaml1). Given the loss of intracellular signaling protein expression, the continued expression of guidance cue receptors in mature OSNs is consistent with a change in the role of these receptors, perhaps to sending signals back to the cell body and nucleus. PMID:20882566

  6. Transfer of disrupted-in-schizophrenia 1 aggregates between neuronal-like cells occurs in tunnelling nanotubes and is promoted by dopamine.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Seng; Abounit, Saïda; Korth, Carsten; Zurzolo, Chiara

    2017-03-01

    The disrupted-in-schizophrenia 1 (DISC1) gene was identified as a genetic risk factor for chronic mental illnesses (CMI) such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and severe recurrent depression. Insoluble aggregated DISC1 variants were found in the cingular cortex of sporadic, i.e. non-genetic, CMI patients. This suggests protein pathology as a novel, additional pathogenic mechanism, further corroborated in a recent transgenic rat model presenting DISC1 aggregates. Since the potential role of aggregation of DISC1 in sporadic CMI is unknown, we investigated whether DISC1 undergoes aggregation in cell culture and could spread between neuronal cells in a prion-like manner, as shown for amyloid proteins in neurodegenerative diseases. Co-culture experiments between donor cells forming DISC1 aggregates and acceptor cells showed that 4.5% of acceptor cells contained donor-derived DISC1 aggregates, thus indicating an efficient transfer in vitro DISC1 aggregates were found inside tunnelling nanotubes (TNTs) and transfer was enhanced by increasing TNT formation and notably by dopamine treatment, which also induces DISC1 aggregation. These data indicate that DISC1 aggregates can propagate between cells similarly to prions, thus providing some molecular basis for the role of protein pathology in CMI.

  7. Transfer of disrupted-in-schizophrenia 1 aggregates between neuronal-like cells occurs in tunnelling nanotubes and is promoted by dopamine

    PubMed Central

    Zhu, Seng; Abounit, Saïda; Korth, Carsten

    2017-01-01

    The disrupted-in-schizophrenia 1 (DISC1) gene was identified as a genetic risk factor for chronic mental illnesses (CMI) such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and severe recurrent depression. Insoluble aggregated DISC1 variants were found in the cingular cortex of sporadic, i.e. non-genetic, CMI patients. This suggests protein pathology as a novel, additional pathogenic mechanism, further corroborated in a recent transgenic rat model presenting DISC1 aggregates. Since the potential role of aggregation of DISC1 in sporadic CMI is unknown, we investigated whether DISC1 undergoes aggregation in cell culture and could spread between neuronal cells in a prion-like manner, as shown for amyloid proteins in neurodegenerative diseases. Co-culture experiments between donor cells forming DISC1 aggregates and acceptor cells showed that 4.5% of acceptor cells contained donor-derived DISC1 aggregates, thus indicating an efficient transfer in vitro. DISC1 aggregates were found inside tunnelling nanotubes (TNTs) and transfer was enhanced by increasing TNT formation and notably by dopamine treatment, which also induces DISC1 aggregation. These data indicate that DISC1 aggregates can propagate between cells similarly to prions, thus providing some molecular basis for the role of protein pathology in CMI. PMID:28275106

  8. Calcitonin gene-related peptide immunoreactive sensory neurons in the vagal and glossopharyngeal ganglia innervating the larynx of the rat.

    PubMed

    Hayakawa, Tetsu; Kuwahara-Otani, Sachi; Maeda, Seishi; Tanaka, Koichi; Seki, Makoto

    2014-01-01

    We have examined whether calcitonin gene-related peptide-immunoreactive (CGRP-ir) neurons in the vagal and glossopharyngeal ganglia innervate the larynx. Many CGRP-ir neurons were located mostly in the superior glossopharyngeal-jugular ganglion complex that was fused the superior glossopharyngeal ganglion and the jugular ganglion in the cranial cavity. When Fluorogold was applied to the cut end of the superior laryngeal nerve (SLN) or the recurrent laryngeal nerve (RLN), many Fluorogold-labeled neurons were found in the superior glossopharyngeal-jugular ganglion complex and the nodose ganglion. Double-labeling for CGRP and Fluorogold showed that about 80% of Fluorogold-labeled neurons in the superior glossopharyngeal-jugular ganglion complex expressed CGRP-like immunoreactivity in the case of application to the SLN, and about 50% of Fluorogold-labeled neurons expressed CGRP-like immunoreactivity in the case of the RLN. Only a few double-labeled neurons were found in the nodose ganglion. The number of the Fluorogold-labeled neurons and double-labeled neurons in the superior glossopharyngeal-jugular ganglion complex in the case of the SLN was larger than that in the case of the RLN. These results indicate that sensory information from the larynx might be conveyed by many CGRP-ir neurons located in the superior glossopharyngeal-jugular ganglion complex by way of the SLN and the RLN.

  9. Transcription factor modularity in a gene-centered C. elegans core neuronal protein–DNA interaction network

    PubMed Central

    Vermeirssen, Vanessa; Barrasa, M. Inmaculada; Hidalgo, César A.; Babon, Jenny Aurielle B.; Sequerra, Reynaldo; Doucette-Stamm, Lynn; Barabási, Albert-László; Walhout, Albertha J.M.

    2007-01-01

    Transcription regulatory networks play a pivotal role in the development, function, and pathology of metazoan organisms. Such networks are comprised of protein–DNA interactions between transcription factors (TFs) and their target genes. An important question pertains to how the architecture of such networks relates to network functionality. Here, we show that a Caenorhabditis elegans core neuronal protein–DNA interaction network is organized into two TF modules. These modules contain TFs that bind to a relatively small number of target genes and are more systems specific than the TF hubs that connect the modules. Each module relates to different functional aspects of the network. One module contains TFs involved in reproduction and target genes that are expressed in neurons as well as in other tissues. The second module is enriched for paired homeodomain TFs and connects to target genes that are often exclusively neuronal. We find that paired homeodomain TFs are specifically expressed in C. elegans and mouse neurons, indicating that the neuronal function of paired homeodomains is evolutionarily conserved. Taken together, we show that a core neuronal C. elegans protein–DNA interaction network possesses TF modules that relate to different functional aspects of the complete network. PMID:17513831

  10. Exposure to cell phone radiation up-regulates apoptosis genes in primary cultures of neurons and astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Tian-Yong; Zou, Shi-Ping; Knapp, Pamela E

    2007-01-22

    The health effects of cell phone radiation exposure are a growing public concern. This study investigated whether expression of genes related to cell death pathways are dysregulated in primary cultured neurons and astrocytes by exposure to a working Global System for Mobile Communication (GSM) cell phone rated at a frequency of 1900MHz. Primary cultures were exposed to cell phone emissions for 2h. We used array analysis and real-time RT-PCR to show up-regulation of caspase-2, caspase-6 and Asc (apoptosis associated speck-like protein containing a card) gene expression in neurons and astrocytes. Up-regulation occurred in both "on" and "stand-by" modes in neurons, but only in "on" mode in astrocytes. Additionally, astrocytes showed up-regulation of the Bax gene. The effects are specific since up-regulation was not seen for other genes associated with apoptosis, such as caspase-9 in either neurons or astrocytes, or Bax in neurons. The results show that even relatively short-term exposure to cell phone radiofrequency emissions can up-regulate elements of apoptotic pathways in cells derived from the brain, and that neurons appear to be more sensitive to this effect than astrocytes.

  11. Exposure to Cell Phone Radiation Up-Regulates Apoptosis Genes in Primary Cultures of Neurons and Astrocytes

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Tian-Yong; Zou, Shi-Ping; Knapp, Pamela E.

    2007-01-01

    The health effects of cell phone radiation exposure are a growing public concern. This study investigated whether expression of genes related to cell death pathways are dysregulated in primary cultured neurons and astrocytes by exposure to a working GSM (Global System for Mobile Communication) cell phone rated at a frequency of 1900 MHz. Primary cultures were exposed to cell phone emissions for 2 hrs. We used array analysis and real-time RT-PCR to show up-regulation of caspase-2, caspase-6 and Asc (apoptosis associated speck-like protein containing a card) gene expression in neurons and astrocytes. Upregulation occurred in both “on” and “stand-by” modes in neurons, but only in “on” mode in astrocytes. Additionally, astrocytes showed up-regulation of the Bax gene. The effects are specific since up-regulation was not seen for other genes associated with apoptosis, such as caspase-9 in either neurons and astrocytes, or Bax in neurons. The results show that even relatively short-term exposure to cell phone radiofrequency emissions can up-regulate elements of apoptotic pathways in cells derived from the brain, and that neurons appear to be more sensitive to this effect than astrocytes. PMID:17187929

  12. Regulation of neuronal gene expression and survival by basal NMDA receptor activity: a role for histone deacetylase 4.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yelin; Wang, Yuanyuan; Modrusan, Zora; Sheng, Morgan; Kaminker, Joshua S

    2014-11-12

    Neuronal gene expression is modulated by activity via calcium-permeable receptors such as NMDA receptors (NMDARs). While gene expression changes downstream of evoked NMDAR activity have been well studied, much less is known about gene expression changes that occur under conditions of basal neuronal activity. In mouse dissociated hippocampal neuronal cultures, we found that a broad NMDAR antagonist, AP5, induced robust gene expression changes under basal activity, but subtype-specific antagonists did not. While some of the gene expression changes are also known to be downstream of stimulated NMDAR activity, others appear specific to basal NMDAR activity. The genes altered by AP5 treatment of basal cultures were enriched for pathways related to class IIa histone deacetylases (HDACs), apoptosis, and synapse-related signaling. Specifically, AP5 altered the expression of all three class IIa HDACs that are highly expressed in the brain, HDAC4, HDAC5, and HDAC9, and also induced nuclear accumulation of HDAC4. HDAC4 knockdown abolished a subset of the gene expression changes induced by AP5, and led to neuronal death under long-term tetrodotoxin or AP5 treatment in rat hippocampal organotypic slice cultures. These data suggest that basal, but not evoked, NMDAR activity regulates gene expression in part through HDAC4, and, that HDAC4 has neuroprotective functions under conditions of low NMDAR activity.

  13. Gene transfer corrects acute GM2 gangliosidosis--potential therapeutic contribution of perivascular enzyme flow.

    PubMed

    Cachón-González, M Begoña; Wang, Susan Z; McNair, Rosamund; Bradley, Josephine; Lunn, David; Ziegler, Robin; Cheng, Seng H; Cox, Timothy M

    2012-08-01

    The GM2 gangliosidoses are fatal lysosomal storage diseases principally affecting the brain. Absence of β-hexosaminidase A and B activities in the Sandhoff mouse causes neurological dysfunction and recapitulates the acute Tay-Sachs (TSD) and Sandhoff diseases (SD) in infants. Intracranial coinjection of recombinant adeno-associated viral vectors (rAAV), serotype 2/1, expressing human β-hexosaminidase α (HEXA) and β (HEXB) subunits into 1-month-old Sandhoff mice gave unprecedented survival to 2 years and prevented disease throughout the brain and spinal cord. Classical manifestations of disease, including spasticity-as opposed to tremor-ataxia-were resolved by localized gene transfer to the striatum or cerebellum, respectively. Abundant biosynthesis of β-hexosaminidase isozymes and their global distribution via axonal, perivascular, and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) spaces, as well as diffusion, account for the sustained phenotypic rescue-long-term protein expression by transduced brain parenchyma, choroid plexus epithelium, and dorsal root ganglia neurons supplies the corrective enzyme. Prolonged survival permitted expression of cryptic disease in organs not accessed by intracranial vector delivery. We contend that infusion of rAAV into CSF space and intraparenchymal administration by convection-enhanced delivery at a few strategic sites will optimally treat neurodegeneration in many diseases affecting the nervous system.

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-01-01

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

  15. Gene Regulatory Mechanisms Underlying the Spatial and Temporal Regulation of Target-Dependent Gene Expression in Drosophila Neurons.

    PubMed

    Berndt, Anthony J E; Tang, Jonathan C Y; Ridyard, Marc S; Lian, Tianshun; Keatings, Kathleen; Allan, Douglas W

    2015-12-01

    Neuronal differentiation often requires target-derived signals from the cells they innervate. These signals typically activate neural subtype-specific genes, but the gene regulatory mechanisms remain largely unknown. Highly restricted expression of the FMRFa neuropeptide in Drosophila Tv4 neurons requires target-derived BMP signaling and a transcription factor code that includes Apterous. Using integrase transgenesis of enhancer reporters, we functionally dissected the Tv4-enhancer of FMRFa within its native cellular context. We identified two essential but discrete cis-elements, a BMP-response element (BMP-RE) that binds BMP-activated pMad, and a homeodomain-response element (HD-RE) that binds Apterous. These cis-elements have low activity and must be combined for Tv4-enhancer activity. Such combinatorial activity is often a mechanism for restricting expression to the intersection of cis-element spatiotemporal activities. However, concatemers of the HD-RE and BMP-RE cis-elements were found to independently generate the same spatiotemporal expression as the Tv4-enhancer. Thus, the Tv4-enhancer atypically combines two low-activity cis-elements that confer the same output from distinct inputs. The activation of target-dependent genes is assumed to 'wait' for target contact. We tested this directly, and unexpectedly found that premature BMP activity could not induce early FMRFa expression; also, we show that the BMP-insensitive HD-RE cis-element is activated at the time of target contact. This led us to uncover a role for the nuclear receptor, seven up (svp), as a repressor of FMRFa induction prior to target contact. Svp is normally downregulated immediately prior to target contact, and we found that maintaining Svp expression prevents cis-element activation, whereas reducing svp gene dosage prematurely activates cis-element activity. We conclude that the target-dependent FMRFa gene is repressed prior to target contact, and that target-derived BMP signaling directly

  16. Gene Regulatory Mechanisms Underlying the Spatial and Temporal Regulation of Target-Dependent Gene Expression in Drosophila Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Ridyard, Marc S.; Lian, Tianshun; Keatings, Kathleen; Allan, Douglas W.

    2015-01-01

    Neuronal differentiation often requires target-derived signals from the cells they innervate. These signals typically activate neural subtype-specific genes, but the gene regulatory mechanisms remain largely unknown. Highly restricted expression of the FMRFa neuropeptide in Drosophila Tv4 neurons requires target-derived BMP signaling and a transcription factor code that includes Apterous. Using integrase transgenesis of enhancer reporters, we functionally dissected the Tv4-enhancer of FMRFa within its native cellular context. We identified two essential but discrete cis-elements, a BMP-response element (BMP-RE) that binds BMP-activated pMad, and a homeodomain-response element (HD-RE) that binds Apterous. These cis-elements have low activity and must be combined for Tv4-enhancer activity. Such combinatorial activity is often a mechanism for restricting expression to the intersection of cis-element spatiotemporal activities. However, concatemers of the HD-RE and BMP-RE cis-elements were found to independently generate the same spatiotemporal expression as the Tv4-enhancer. Thus, the Tv4-enhancer atypically combines two low-activity cis-elements that confer the same output from distinct inputs. The activation of target-dependent genes is assumed to 'wait' for target contact. We tested this directly, and unexpectedly found that premature BMP activity could not induce early FMRFa expression; also, we show that the BMP-insensitive HD-RE cis-element is activated at the time of target contact. This led us to uncover a role for the nuclear receptor, seven up (svp), as a repressor of FMRFa induction prior to target contact. Svp is normally downregulated immediately prior to target contact, and we found that maintaining Svp expression prevents cis-element activation, whereas reducing svp gene dosage prematurely activates cis-element activity. We conclude that the target-dependent FMRFa gene is repressed prior to target contact, and that target-derived BMP signaling directly

  17. Gene transfer into Solanum tuberosum via Rhizobium spp.

    PubMed

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

    2011-04-01

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

  18. The neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor {alpha}7 subunit gene: Cloning, mapping, structure, and targeting in mouse

    SciTech Connect

    Orr-Urtreger, A.; Baldini, A.; Beaudet, A.L.

    1994-09-01

    The neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor {alpha}7 subunit is a member of a family of ligand-gated ion channels, and is the only subunit know to bind {alpha}-bungarotoxin in mammalian brain. {alpha}-Bungarotoxin binding sites are known to be more abundant in the hippocampus of mouse strains that are particularly sensitive to nicotine-induced seizures. The {alpha}7 receptor is highly permeable to calcium, which could suggest a role in synaptic plasticity in the nervous system. Auditory gating deficiency, an abnormal response to a second auditory stimulus, is characteristic of schizophrenia. Mouse strains that exhibit a similar gating deficit have reduced hippocampal expression of the {alpha}7 subunit. We have cloned and sequenced the full length cDNA for the mouse {alpha}7 gene (Acra-7) and characterized its gene structure. The murine {alpha}7 shares amino acid identity of 99% and 93% with the rat and human {alpha}7 subunits, respectively. Using an interspecies backcross panel, the murine gene was mapped to chromosome 7 near the p locus, a region syntenic with human chromosome 15; the human gene (CHRNA7) was confirmed to map to 15q13-q14 by FISH. To generate a mouse {alpha}7 mutant by homologous recombination, we have constructed a replacement vector which will delete transmembrane domains II-IV and the cytoplasmic domain from the gene product. Recombinant embryonic stem (ES) cell clones were selected and used to develop mouse chimeras that are currently being bred to obtain germline transmission.

  19. Odor-evoked gene regulation and visualization in olfactory receptor neurons

    PubMed Central

    Bennett, Mosi K.; Kulaga, Heather M.; Reed, Randall R.

    2010-01-01

    Odorant-evoked activity contributes to olfactory epithelium organization and axon targeting. We examined the consequences on gene expression of a genetic disruption of the channel responsible for olfactory transduction. Genes encoding calcium-binding EF-hand motifs, were among the most highly regulated transcripts consistent with the central role of Ca2+ influx in neuronal depolarization. Several genes encoding integral membrane proteins are also highly regulated. One gene, Lrrc3b, was regulated more than 10-fold by odorant activity. Changes in expression occur within thirty minutes and are maintained for several hours. In genetic disruptions of Lrrc3b, a Lrrc3b-promoter-driven reporter adopts the activity-regulated expression of the endogenous gene. Individual olfactory glomeruli have a wide spectrum of activity levels that can be modulated by altering odor exposure. The Lrrc3b reporter mouse permits direct assessment of activity in identified glomeruli. In stable odorant environments, activity-regulated proteins provide a characteristic signature that is correlated with the olfactory receptor they express. PMID:20080187

  20. Microfluidic measurement of effects of ACF7/MACF1 gene on the mechanics of primary cortical neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Donghee; Ka, Minhan; Kim, Woo-Yang; Ryu, Sangjin

    2014-03-01

    Actin filaments and microtubules play important roles in determining the mechanics of cells, and ACF7/MACF1 (Actin Crosslinking Family 7/Microtubule And Actin Crosslinking Factor 1) gene seems to be closely related to connections between actin filaments and microtubules. To identify such roles of the ACF7/MACF1 gene of primary cortical neurons, we isolated neuronal cells from the cerebral cortex of the embryonic mouse brain, which is important in memory, language and perception. We exerted viscous shear flow to normal neuronal cells and ACF7/MACF1 gene knockout neuronal cells using rectangular microfluidic channels. While changing viscous shear stress on the cells, we recorded changes in the morphology of the two cell types using video microscopy. Having analyzed the deformation of the cells, we could quantitatively correlate differences in the morphological change between the both normal and ACF7/MACF1 gene knockout neuronal cells to the applied shear force, which will contribute toward identifying cell mechanical roles of the ACF7/MACF1 gene.

  1. Alternation of gene expression in trigeminal ganglion neurons following complete Freund's adjuvant or capsaicin injection into the rat face.

    PubMed

    Okumura, Masayo; Iwata, Koichi; Yasuda, Koichi; Inoue, Katsuhiro; Shinoda, Masamichi; Honda, Kuniya; Shibuta, Kazuo; Yasuda, Masashi; Kondo, Eiji

    2010-10-01

    The hyperexcitability of trigeminal ganglion (TG) neurons following inflammation or C-fiber stimulation is known to be involved in a variety of changes in gene expression in TG neurons, resulting in pain abnormalities in orofacial regions. We analyzed nocifensive behavior following complete Freund's adjuvant (CFA) or capsaicin injection into the maxillary whisker pad, and gene expression in the TG neurons using microarray analysis. The head-withdrawal latency to capsaicin injection or the head-withdrawal threshold to mechanical stimulation of the whisker pad skin in CFA-treated rats was significantly decreased compared to vehicle-treated rats. Many up-regulated and down-regulated genes in the TG neurons of each model were reported. Genes which have not been linked to peripheral inflammation or C-fiber activation were detected. Moreover, microarray chip containing a number of non-coding sequences was also up-regulated by C-fiber activation. These findings suggest that the diverse gene expressions in TG neurons are differentially involved in the inflammatory chronic pain and the acute pain induced by C-fiber activation, and the hyperexcitation of C-fibers are associated with the activation of certain non-coding RNAs.

  2. The gene silencing transcription factor REST represses miR-132 expression in hippocampal neurons destined to die

    PubMed Central

    Hwang, Jee-Yeon; Kaneko, Naoki; Noh, Kyung-Min; Pontarelli, Fabrizio; Zukin, R. Suzanne

    2014-01-01

    The gene silencing transcription factor REST/NRSF (Repressor Element-1 (RE1) Silencing Transcription Factor/Neuron-Restrictive Silencer Factor) actively represses a large array of coding and noncoding neuron-specific genes important to synaptic plasticity including miR-132. miR-132 is a neuron-specific microRNA and plays a pivotal role in synaptogenesis, synaptic plasticity and structural remodeling. However, a role for miR-132 in neuronal death is not, as yet, well-delineated. Here we show that ischemic insults promote REST binding and epigenetic remodeling at the miR-132 promoter and silencing of miR-132 expression in selectively-vulnerable hippocampal CA1 neurons. REST occupancy was not altered at the miR-9 or miR-124a promoters despite the presence of RE1 sites, indicating REST target specificity. Ischemia induced a substantial decrease in two marks of active gene transcription, dimethylation of lysine 4 on core histone 3 (H3K4me2) and acetylation of lysine 9 on H3 (H3K9ac) at the miR-132 promoter. RNAi-mediated depletion of REST in vivo blocked ischemia-induced loss of miR-132 in insulted hippocampal neurons, consistent with a causal relation between activation of REST and silencing of miR-132. Overexpression of miR-132 in primary cultures of hippocampal neurons or delivered directly into the CA1 of living rats by means of the lentiviral expression system prior to induction of ischemia afforded robust protection against ischemia-induced neuronal death. These findings document a previously unappreciated role for REST-dependent repression of miR-132 in the neuronal death associated with global ischemia and identify a novel therapeutic target for amelioration of the neurodegeneration and cognitive deficits associated with ischemic stroke. PMID:25108103

  3. Heterochromatin-mediated gene silencing facilitates the diversification of olfactory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Lyons, David B.; Magklara, Angeliki; Goh, Tracie; Sampath, Srihari; Schaefer, Anne; Schotta, Gunnar; Lomvardas, Stavros

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY An astounding property of the nervous system is its cellular diversity. This diversity, which was initially realized by morphological and electrophysiological differences, is ultimately produced by variations in gene expression programs. In most cases these variations are determined by external cues. However, a growing number of neuronal types have been identified in which inductive signals cannot explain the few but decisive transcriptional differences that cause cell diversification. Here, we show that heterochromatic silencing, which we find is governed by histone methyltransferases G9a (KMT1C) and GLP (KMT1D), is essential for stochastic and singular OR expression. Deletion of G9a and GLP dramatically reduces the complexity of the OR transcriptome, resulting in transcriptional domination by a few ORs and loss of singularity in OR expression. Thus, in addition to its previously known functions, our data suggest that heterochromatin creates an epigenetic platform that affords stochastic, mutually exclusive gene choices and promotes cellular diversity. PMID:25437545

  4. NGF induction of the gene encoding the protease transin accompanies neuronal differentiation in PC12 cells.

    PubMed

    Machida, C M; Rodland, K D; Matrisian, L; Magun, B E; Ciment, G

    1989-06-01

    Various proteases have been found to be released by the growth cones of developing neurons in culture and have been hypothesized to play a role in the process of axon elongation. We report here that nerve growth factor (NGF) induced the gene encoding the metalloprotease transin in PC12 cells with a time course coincident with the initial appearance of neurites by these cells. Acidic and basic fibroblast growth factors also stimulated transin mRNA expression and neurite outgrowth, whereas various other agents had no effects on either of these phenomena. In contrast, dexamethasone was found to inhibit the induction of transin mRNA when added with, or following, NGF treatment. Finally, we show that sequences contained within 750 bp of the 5' untranscribed region of the transin gene confer responsiveness to NGF and dexamethasone.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  6. Apramycin resistance as a selective marker for gene transfer in mycobacteria.

    PubMed Central

    Paget, E; Davies, J

    1996-01-01

    We have explored the potential of using the apramycin resistance gene as a marker in mycobacterial gene transfer studies. Shuttle plasmids available for both electroporation and conjugation studies have been constructed, and we have successfully validated the use of the apramycin resistance gene as a component of cloning vectors for Mycobacterium smegmatis, M. bovis BCG, and M. tuberculosis. PMID:8892841

  7. uv excision-repair gene transfer in Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells

    SciTech Connect

    MacInnes, M.A.; Bingham, J.M.; Strniste, G.F.; Thompson, L.H.

    1983-01-01

    uvc-sensitive mutants of CHO cells provide a model system for molecular studies of DNA repair. We present our recent results which show that these mutants are competent recipients for plasmid marker gene transfer and incorporation of a putative CHO repair gene. The applicability and advantages of this system for interspecies human repair gene identification are discussed.

  8. Binding of TFIIIC to SINE Elements Controls the Relocation of Activity-Dependent Neuronal Genes to Transcription Factories

    PubMed Central

    Crepaldi, Luca; Policarpi, Cristina; Coatti, Alessandro; Sherlock, William T.; Jongbloets, Bart C.; Down, Thomas A.; Riccio, Antonella

    2013-01-01

    In neurons, the timely and accurate expression of genes in response to synaptic activity relies on the interplay between epigenetic modifications of histones, recruitment of regulatory proteins to chromatin and changes to nuclear structure. To identify genes and regulatory elements responsive to synaptic activation in vivo, we performed a genome-wide ChIPseq analysis of acetylated histone H3 using somatosensory cortex of mice exposed to novel enriched environmental (NEE) conditions. We discovered that Short Interspersed Elements (SINEs) located distal to promoters of activity-dependent genes became acetylated following exposure to NEE and were bound by the general transcription factor TFIIIC. Importantly, under depolarizing conditions, inducible genes relocated to transcription factories (TFs), and this event was controlled by TFIIIC. Silencing of the TFIIIC subunit Gtf3c5 in non-stimulated neurons induced uncontrolled relocation to TFs and transcription of activity-dependent genes. Remarkably, in cortical neurons, silencing of Gtf3c5 mimicked the effects of chronic depolarization, inducing a dramatic increase of both dendritic length and branching. These findings reveal a novel and essential regulatory function of both SINEs and TFIIIC in mediating gene relocation and transcription. They also suggest that TFIIIC may regulate the rearrangement of nuclear architecture, allowing the coordinated expression of activity-dependent neuronal genes. PMID:23966877

  9. Evolution of the cutinase gene family: evidence for lateral gene transfer of a candidate Phytophthora virulence factor.

    PubMed

    Belbahri, Lassaad; Calmin, Gautier; Mauch, Felix; Andersson, Jan O

    2008-01-31

    Lateral gene transfer (LGT) can facilitate the acquisition of new functions in recipient lineages, which may enable them to colonize new environments. Several recent publications have shown that gene transfer between prokaryotes and eukaryotes occurs with appreciable frequency. Here we present a study of interdomain gene transfer of cutinases -- well documented virulence factors in fungi -- between eukaryotic plant pathogens Phytophthora species and prokaryotic bacterial lineages. Two putative cutinase genes were cloned from Phytophthora brassicae and Northern blotting experiments showed that these genes are expressed early during the infection of the host Arabidopsis thaliana and induced during cyst germination of the pathogen. Analysis of the gene organisation of this gene family in Phytophthora ramorum and P. sojae showed three and ten copies in tight succession within a region of 5 and 25 kb, respectively, probably indicating a recent expansion in Phytophthora lineages by gene duplications. Bioinformatic analyses identified orthologues only in three genera of Actinobacteria, and in two distantly related eukaryotic groups: oomycetes and fungi. Together with phylogenetic analyses this limited distribution of the gene in the tree of life strongly support a scenario where cutinase genes originated after the origin of land plants in a microbial lineage living in proximity of plants and subsequently were transferred between distantly related plant-degrading microbes. More precisely, a cutinase gene was likely acquired by an ancestor of P. brassicae, P. sojae, P. infestans and P. ramorum, possibly from an actinobacterial source, suggesting that gene transfer might be an important mechanism in the evolution of their virulence. These findings could indeed provide an interesting model system to study acquisition of virulence factors in these important plant pathogens.

  10. Neuron type-specific miRNA represses two broadly expressed genes to modulate an avoidance behavior in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Drexel, Tanja; Mahofsky, Katharina; Latham, Richard; Zimmer, Manuel

    2016-01-01

    Two broad gene classes are distinguished within multicellular organisms: cell type-specific genes, which confer particular cellular properties, and ubiquitous genes that support general cellular functions. However, certain so-called ubiquitous genes show functionally relevant cell type-specific repression. How such repression is achieved is poorly understood. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are repressors, many of which are expressed with high cell type specificity. Here we show that mir-791, expressed exclusively in the CO2-sensing neurons in Caenorhabditis elegans, represses two otherwise broadly expressed genes. This repression is necessary for normal neuronal function and behavior of the animals toward CO2. miRNA-mediated repression of broadly transcribed genes is a previously unappreciated strategy for cellular specialization. PMID:27688400

  11. miRNAome analysis of the mammalian neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor gene family.

    PubMed

    Hogan, Eric M; Casserly, Alison P; Scofield, Michael D; Mou, Zhongming; Zhao-Shea, Rubing; Johnson, Chris W; Tapper, Andrew R; Gardner, Paul D

    2014-12-01

    Nicotine binds to and activates a family of ligand-gated ion channels, neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). Chronic nicotine exposure alters the expression of various nAChR subtypes, which likely contributes to nicotine dependence; however, the underlying mechanisms regulating these changes remain unclear. A growing body of evidence indicates that microRNAs (miRNAs) may be involved in nAChR regulation. Using bioinformatics, miRNA library screening, site-directed mutagenesis, and gene expression analysis, we have identified a limited number of miRNAs that functionally interact with the 3'-untranslated regions (3' UTRs) of mammalian neuronal nAChR subunit genes. In silico analyses revealed specific, evolutionarily conserved sites within the 3' UTRs through which the miRNAs regulate gene expression. Mutating these sites disrupted miRNA regulation confirming the in silico predictions. In addition, the miRNAs that target nAChR 3' UTRs are expressed in mouse brain and are regulated by chronic nicotine exposure. Furthermore, we show that expression of one of these miRNAs, miR-542-3p, is modulated by nicotine within the mesocorticolimbic reward pathway. Importantly, overexpression of miR-542-3p led to a decrease in the protein levels of its target, the nAChR β2 subunit. Bioinformatic analysis suggests that a number of the miRNAs play a general role in regulating cholinergic signaling. Our results provide evidence for a novel mode of nicotine-mediated regulation of the mammalian nAChR gene family.

  12. Horizontal Gene Transfer of Pectinases from Bacteria Preceded the Diversification of Stick and Leaf Insects

    PubMed Central

    Shelomi, Matan; Danchin, Etienne G. J.; Heckel, David; Wipfler, Benjamin; Bradler, Sven; Zhou, Xin; Pauchet, Yannick

    2016-01-01

    Genes acquired by horizontal transfer are increasingly being found in animal genomes. Understanding their origin and evolution requires knowledge about the phylogenetic relationships from both source and recipient organisms. We used RNASeq data and respective assembled transcript libraries to trace the evolutionary history of polygalacturonase (pectinase) genes in stick insects (Phasmatodea). By mapping the distribution of pectinase genes on a Polyneoptera phylogeny, we identified the transfer of pectinase genes from known phasmatodean gut microbes into the genome of an early euphasmatodean ancestor that took place between 60 and 100 million years ago. This transfer preceded the rapid diversification of the suborder, enabling symbiont-free pectinase production that would increase the insects’ digestive efficiency and reduce dependence on microbes. Bacteria-to-insect gene transfer was thought to be uncommon, however the increasing availability of large-scale genomic data may change this prevailing notion. PMID:27210832

  13. Hox Proteins Coordinate Motor Neuron Differentiation and Connectivity Programs through Ret/Gfrα Genes.

    PubMed

    Catela, Catarina; Shin, Maggie M; Lee, David H; Liu, Jeh-Ping; Dasen, Jeremy S

    2016-03-01

    The accuracy of neural circuit assembly relies on the precise spatial and temporal control of synaptic specificity determinants during development. Hox transcription factors govern key aspects of motor neuron (MN) differentiation; however, the terminal effectors of their actions are largely unknown. We show that Hox/Hox cofactor interactions coordinate MN subtype diversification and connectivity through Ret/Gfrα receptor genes. Hox and Meis proteins determine the levels of Ret in MNs and define the intrasegmental profiles of Gfrα1 and Gfrα3 expression. Loss of Ret or Gfrα3 leads to MN specification and innervation defects similar to those observed in Hox mutants, while expression of Ret and Gfrα1 can bypass the requirement for Hox genes during MN pool differentiation. These studies indicate that Hox proteins contribute to neuronal fate and muscle connectivity through controlling the levels and pattern of cell surface receptor expression, consequently gating the ability of MNs to respond to limb-derived instructive cues.

  14. Neonicotinoid Insecticides Alter the Gene Expression Profile of Neuron-Enriched Cultures from Neonatal Rat Cerebellum

    PubMed Central

    Kimura-Kuroda, Junko; Nishito, Yasumasa; Yanagisawa, Hiroko; Kuroda, Yoichiro; Komuta, Yukari; Kawano, Hitoshi; Hayashi, Masaharu

    2016-01-01

    Neonicotinoids are considered safe because of their low affinities to mammalian nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) relative to insect nAChRs. However, because of importance of nAChRs in mammalian brain development, there remains a need to establish the safety of chronic neonicotinoid exposures with regards to children’s health. Here we examined the effects of long-term (14 days) and low dose (1 μM) exposure of neuron-enriched cultures from neonatal rat cerebellum to nicotine and two neonicotinoids: acetamiprid and imidacloprid. Immunocytochemistry revealed no differences in the number or morphology of immature neurons or glial cells in any group versus untreated control cultures. However, a slight disturbance in Purkinje cell dendritic arborization was observed in the exposed cultures. Next we performed transcriptome analysis on total RNAs using microarrays, and identified significant differential expression (p < 0.05, q < 0.05, ≥1.5 fold) between control cultures versus nicotine-, acetamiprid-, or imidacloprid-exposed cultures in 34, 48, and 67 genes, respectively. Common to all exposed groups were nine genes essential for neurodevelopment, suggesting that chronic neonicotinoid exposure alters the transcriptome of the developing mammalian brain in a similar way to nicotine exposure. Our results highlight the need for further careful investigations into the effects of neonicotinoids in the developing mammalian brain. PMID:27782041

  15. Neonicotinoid Insecticides Alter the Gene Expression Profile of Neuron-Enriched Cultures from Neonatal Rat Cerebellum.

    PubMed

    Kimura-Kuroda, Junko; Nishito, Yasumasa; Yanagisawa, Hiroko; Kuroda, Yoichiro; Komuta, Yukari; Kawano, Hitoshi; Hayashi, Masaharu

    2016-10-04

    Neonicotinoids are considered safe because of their low affinities to mammalian nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) relative to insect nAChRs. However, because of importance of nAChRs in mammalian brain development, there remains a need to establish the safety of chronic neonicotinoid exposures with regards to children's health. Here we examined the effects of longterm (14 days) and low dose (1 μM) exposure of neuron-enriched cultures from neonatal rat cerebellum to nicotine and two neonicotinoids: acetamiprid and imidacloprid. Immunocytochemistry revealed no differences in the number or morphology of immature neurons or glial cells in any group versus untreated control cultures. However, a slight disturbance in Purkinje cell dendritic arborization was observed in the exposed cultures. Next we performed transcriptome analysis on total RNAs using microarrays, and identified significant differential expression (p < 0.05, q < 0.05, ≥1.5 fold) between control cultures versus nicotine-, acetamiprid-, or imidacloprid-exposed cultures in 34, 48, and 67 genes, respectively. Common to all exposed groups were nine genes essential for neurodevelopment, suggesting that chronic neonicotinoid exposure alters the transcriptome of the developing mammalian brain in a similar way to nicotine exposure. Our results highlight the need for further careful investigations into the effects of neonicotinoids in the developing mammalian brain.

  16. Gene Transfer Efficiency in Gonococcal Biofilms: Role of Biofilm Age, Architecture, and Pilin Antigenic Variation

    PubMed Central

    Kouzel, Nadzeya; Oldewurtel, Enno R.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Extracellular DNA is an important structural component of many bacterial biofilms. It is unknown, however, to which extent external DNA is used to transfer genes by means of transformation. Here, we quantified the acquisition of multidrug resistance and visualized its spread under selective and nonselective conditions in biofilms formed by Neisseria gonorrhoeae. The density and architecture of the biofilms were controlled by microstructuring the substratum for bacterial adhesion. Horizontal transfer of antibiotic resistance genes between cocultured strains, each carrying a single resistance, occurred efficiently in early biofilms. The efficiency of gene transfer was higher in early biofilms than between planktonic cells. It was strongly reduced after 24 h and independent of biofilm density. Pilin antigenic variation caused a high fraction of nonpiliated bacteria but was not responsible for the reduced gene transfer at later stages. When selective pressure was applied to dense biofilms using antibiotics at their MIC, the double-resistant bacteria did not show a significant growth advantage. In loosely connected biofilms, the spreading of double-resistant clones was prominent. We conclude that multidrug resistance readily develops in early gonococcal biofilms through horizontal gene transfer. However, selection and spreading of the multiresistant clones are heavily suppressed in dense biofilms. IMPORTANCE Biofilms are considered ideal reaction chambers for horizontal gene transfer and development of multidrug resistances. The rate at which genes are exchanged within biofilms is unknown. Here, we quantified the acquisition of double-drug resistance by gene transfer between gonococci with single resistances. At early biofilm stages, the transfer efficiency was higher than for planktonic cells but then decreased with biofilm age. The surface topography affected the architecture of the biofilm. While the efficiency of gene transfer was independent of the

  17. Horizontal gene transfer and the evolution of transcriptionalregulation in Escherichia coli

    SciTech Connect

    Price, Morgan N.; Dehal, Paramvir S.; Arkin, Adam P.

    2007-12-20

    Background: Most bacterial genes were acquired by horizontalgene transfer from other bacteria instead of being inherited bycontinuous vertical descent from an ancient ancestor}. To understand howthe regulation of these {acquired} genes evolved, we examined theevolutionary histories of transcription factors and of regulatoryinteractions from the model bacterium Escherichia coli K12. Results:Although most transcription factors have paralogs, these usually arose byhorizontal gene transfer rather than by duplication within the E. colilineage, as previously believed. In general, most neighbor regulators --regulators that are adjacent to genes that they regulate -- were acquiredby horizontal gene transfer, while most global regulators evolvedvertically within the gamma-Proteobacteria. Neighbor regulators wereoften acquired together with the adjacent operon that they regulate, sothe proximity might be maintained by repeated transfers (like "selfishoperons"). Many of the as-yet-uncharacterized (putative) regulators havealso been acquired together with adjacent genes, so we predict that theseare neighbor regulators as well. When we analyzed the histories ofregulatory interactions, we found that the evolution of regulation byduplication was rare, and surprisingly, many of the regulatoryinteractions that are shared between paralogs result from convergentevolution. Another surprise was that horizontally transferred genes aremore likely than other genes to be regulated by multiple regulators, andmost of this complex regulation probably evolved after the transfer.Conclusions: Our results highlight the rapid evolution of niche-specificgene regulation in bacteria.

  18. Downregulation of immediate-early genes linking to suppression of neuronal plasticity in rats after 28-day exposure to glycidol.

    PubMed

    Akane, Hirotoshi; Saito, Fumiyo; Shiraki, Ayako; Takeyoshi, Masahiro; Imatanaka, Nobuya; Itahashi, Megu; Murakami, Tomoaki; Shibutani, Makoto

    2014-09-01

    We previously found that the 28-day oral toxicity study of glycidol at 200mg/kg/day in rats resulted in axonopathy in both the central and peripheral nervous systems and aberrations in the late-stage of hippocampal neurogenesis targeting the process of neurite extension. To capture the neuronal parameters in response to glycidol toxicity, these animals were subjected to region-specific global gene expression profiling in four regions of cerebral and cerebellar architectures, followed by immunohistochemical analysis of selected gene products. Expression changes of genes related to axonogenesis and synaptic transmission were observed in the hippocampal dentate gyrus, cingulate cortex and cerebellar vermis at 200mg/kg showing downregulation in most genes. In the corpus callosum, genes related to growth, survival and functions of glial cells fluctuated their expression. Immunohistochemically, neurons expressing gene products of immediate-early genes, i.e., Arc, Fos and Jun, decreased in their number in the dentate granule cell layer, cingulate cortex and cerebellar vermis. We also applied immunohistochemical analysis in rat offspring after developmental exposure to glycidol through maternal drinking water. The results revealed increases of Arc(+) neurons at 1000ppm and Fos(+) neurons at ≥300ppm in the dentate granule cell layer of offspring only at the adult stage. These results suggest that glycidol suppressed neuronal plasticity in the brain after 28-day exposure to young adult animals, in contrast to the operation of restoration mechanism to increase neuronal plasticity at the adult stage in response to aberrations in neurogenesis after developmental exposure.

  19. Modulation of a feeding neural circuit by microinjection of K+ channel expression genes into a single identified neuron in Aplysia kurodai.

    PubMed

    Arai, Hidekazu; Kubo, Tai; Nagahama, Tatsumi

    2004-04-01

    In Aplysia buccal ganglion expression genes for voltage-dependent K(+) channels (AKv1.1a) were injected into one of four electrically coupled multi-action (MA) neurons that directly inhibit jaw-closing (JC) motor neurons and may cooperatively generate their firing pattern during the feeding response. Following the DNA injection, the firing threshold increased and the spike frequency at the same current decreased in the current-induced excitation of the MA neuron; indicating a decrease in excitability of the MA neuron. This procedure also reduced the firing activity of MA neurons during the feeding-like rhythmic responses induced by the electrical nerve stimulation. Moreover, the firing pattern in JC motor neurons was remarkably changed, suggesting the effective contribution of a single MA neuron or electrically coupled MA neurons to the generation of the firing pattern in the JC motor neurons. This method appears useful for exploring the functional roles of specific neurons in complex neural circuits.

  20. In vivo targeted gene delivery to peripheral neurons mediated by neurotropic poly(ethylene imine)-based nanoparticles

    PubMed Central

    Lopes, Cátia DF; Oliveira, Hugo; Estevão, Inês; Pires, Liliana Raquel; Pêgo, Ana Paula

    2016-01-01

    A major challenge in neuronal gene therapy is to achieve safe, efficient, and minimally invasive transgene delivery to neurons. In this study, we report the use of a nonviral neurotropic poly(ethylene imine)-based nanoparticle that is capable of mediating neuron-specific transfection upon a subcutaneous injection. Nanoparticles were targeted to peripheral neurons by using the nontoxic carboxylic fragment of tetanus toxin (HC), which, besides being neurotropic, is capable of being retrogradely transported from neuron terminals to the cell bodies. Nontargeted particles and naked plasmid DNA were used as control. Five days after treatment by subcutaneous injection in the footpad of Wistar rats, it was observed that 56% and 64% of L4 and L5 dorsal root ganglia neurons, respectively, were expressing the reporter protein. The delivery mediated by HC-functionalized nanoparticles spatially limited the transgene expression, in comparison with the controls. Histological examination revealed no significant adverse effects in the use of the proposed delivery system. These findings demonstrate the feasibility and safety of the developed neurotropic nanoparticles for the minimally invasive delivery of genes to the peripheral nervous system, opening new avenues for the application of gene therapy strategies in the treatment of peripheral neuropathies. PMID:27354797

  1. Plasmid transfer by conjugation as a possible route of horizontal gene transfer and recombination in Xylella fastidiosa

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Horizontal gene transfer is an important component of evolution and adaptation of bacterial species. Xylella fastidiosa has the ability to incorporate exogenous DNA into its genome by homologous recombination at relatively high rates. This genetic recombination is believed to play a role in adaptati...

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2011-09-01

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

  3. Horizontally transferred genes in the genome of Pacific white shrimp, Litopenaeus vannamei

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background In recent years, as the development of next-generation sequencing technology, a growing number of genes have been reported as being horizontally transferred from prokaryotes to eukaryotes, most of them involving arthropods. As a member of the phylum Arthropoda, the Pacific white shrimp Litopenaeus vannamei has to adapt to the complex water environments with various symbiotic or parasitic microorganisms, which provide a platform for horizontal gene transfer (HGT). Results In this study, we analyzed the genome-wide HGT events in L. vannamei. Through homology search and phylogenetic analysis, followed by experimental PCR confirmation, 14 genes with HGT event were identified: 12 of them were transferred from bacteria and two from fungi. Structure analysis of these genes showed that the introns of the two fungi-originated genes were substituted by shrimp DNA fragment, two genes transferred from bacteria had shrimp specific introns inserted in them. Furthermore, around other three bacteria-originated genes, there were three large DNA segments inserted into the shrimp genome. One segment was a transposon that fully transferred, and the other two segments contained only coding regions of bacteria. Functional prediction of these 14 genes showed that 6 of them might be related to energy metabolism, and 4 others related to defense of the organism. Conclusions HGT events from bacteria or fungi were happened in the genome of L. vannamei, and these horizontally transferred genes can be transcribed in shrimp. This is the first time to report the existence of horizontally transferred genes in shrimp. Importantly, most of these genes are exposed to a negative selection pressure and appeared to be functional. PMID:23914989

  4. Horizontal gene transfer of an entire metabolic pathway between a eukaryotic alga and its DNA virus

    PubMed Central

    Monier, Adam; Pagarete, António; de Vargas, Colomban; Allen, Michael J.; Read, Betsy; Claverie, Jean-Michel; Ogata, Hiroyuki

    2009-01-01

    Interactions between viruses and phytoplankton, the main primary producers in the oceans, affect global biogeochemical cycles and climate. Recent studies are increasingly revealing possible cases of gene transfers between cyanobacteria and phages, which might have played significant roles in the evolution of cyanobacteria/phage systems. However, little has been documented about the occurrence of horizontal gene transfer in eukaryotic phytoplankton/virus systems. Here we report phylogenetic evidence for the transfer of seven genes involved in the sphingolipid biosynthesis pathway between the cosmopolitan eukaryotic microalga Emiliania huxleyi and its large DNA virus EhV. PCR assays indicate that these genes are prevalent in E. huxleyi and EhV strains isolated from different geographic locations. Patterns of protein and gene sequence conservation support that these genes are functional in both E. huxleyi and EhV. This is the first clear case of horizontal gene transfer of multiple functionally linked enzymes in a eukaryotic phytoplankton–virus system. We examine arguments for the possible direction of the gene transfer. The virus-to-host direction suggests the existence of ancient viruses that controlled the complex metabolic pathway in order to infect primitive eukaryotic cells. In contrast, the host-to-virus direction suggests that the serial acquisition of genes involved in the same metabolic pathway might have been a strategy for the ancestor of EhVs to stay ahead of their closest relatives in the great evolutionary race for survival. PMID:19451591

  5. A new computational method for the detection of horizontal gene transfer events.

    PubMed

    Tsirigos, Aristotelis; Rigoutsos, Isidore

    2005-01-01

    In recent years, the increase in the amounts of available genomic data has made it easier to appreciate the extent by which organisms increase their genetic diversity through horizontally transferred genetic material. Such transfers have the potential to give rise to extremely dynamic genomes where a significant proportion of their coding DNA has been contributed by external sources. Because of the impact of these horizontal transfers on the ecological and pathogenic character of the recipient organisms, methods are continuously sought that are able to computationally determine which of the genes of a given genome are products of transfer events. In this paper, we introduce and discuss a novel computational method for identifying horizontal transfers that relies on a gene's nucleotide composition and obviates the need for knowledge of codon boundaries. In addition to being applicable to individual genes, the method can be easily extended to the case of clusters of horizontally transferred genes. With the help of an extensive and carefully designed set of experiments on 123 archaeal and bacterial genomes, we demonstrate that the new method exhibits significant improvement in sensitivity when compared to previously published approaches. In fact, it achieves an average relative improvement across genomes of between 11 and 41% compared to the Codon Adaptation Index method in distinguishing native from foreign genes. Our method's horizontal gene transfer predictions for 123 microbial genomes are available online at http://cbcsrv.watson.ibm.com/HGT/.

  6. Cis- and Trans-Regulatory Mechanisms of Gene Expression in the ASJ Sensory Neuron of Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    González-Barrios, María; Fierro-González, Juan Carlos; Krpelanova, Eva; Mora-Lorca, José Antonio; Pedrajas, José Rafael; Peñate, Xenia; Chavez, Sebastián; Swoboda, Peter; Jansen, Gert; Miranda-Vizuete, Antonio

    2015-01-01

    The identity of a given cell type is determined by the expression of a set of genes sharing common cis-regulatory motifs and being regulated by shared transcription factors. Here, we identify cis and trans regulatory elements that drive gene expression in the bilateral sensory neuron ASJ, located in the head of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. For this purpose, we have dissected the promoters of the only two genes so far reported to be exclusively expressed in ASJ, trx-1 and ssu-1. We hereby identify the ASJ motif, a functional cis-regulatory bipartite promoter region composed of two individual 6 bp elements separated by a 3 bp linker. The first element is a 6 bp CG-rich sequence that presumably binds the Sp family member zinc-finger transcription factor SPTF-1. Interestingly, within the C. elegans nervous system SPTF-1 is also found to be expressed only in ASJ neurons where it regulates expression of other genes in these neurons and ASJ cell fate. The second element of the bipartite motif is a 6 bp AT-rich sequence that is predicted to potentially bind a transcription factor of the homeobox family. Together, our findings identify a specific promoter signature and SPTF-1 as a transcription factor that functions as a terminal selector gene to regulate gene expression in C. elegans ASJ sensory neurons. PMID:25769980

  7. Characterization of Tusc5, an adipocyte gene co-expressed in peripheral neurons.

    PubMed

    Oort, Pieter J; Warden, Craig H; Baumann, Thomas K; Knotts, Trina A; Adams, Sean H

    2007-09-30

    Tumor suppressor candidate 5 (Tusc5, also termed brain endothelial cell derived gene-1 or BEC-1), a CD225 domain-containing, cold-repressed gene identified during brown adipose tissue (BAT) transcriptome analyses was found to be robustly-expressed in mouse white adipose tissue (WAT) and BAT, with similarly high expression in human adipocytes. Tusc5 mRNA was markedly increased from trace levels in pre-adipocytes to significant levels in developing 3T3-L1 adipocytes, coincident with several mature adipocyte markers (phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase 1, GLUT4, adipsin, leptin). The Tusc5 transcript levels were increased by the peroxisome proliferator activated receptor-gamma (PPARgamma) agonist GW1929 (1microg/mL, 18h) by >10-fold (pre-adipocytes) to approximately 1.5-fold (mature adipocytes) versus controls (p<0.0001). Taken together, these results suggest an important role for Tusc5 in maturing adipocytes. Intriguingly, we discovered robust co-expression of the gene in peripheral nerves (primary somatosensory neurons). In light of the marked repression of the gene observed after cold exposure, these findings may point to participation of Tusc5 in shared adipose-nervous system functions linking environmental cues, CNS signals, and WAT-BAT physiology. Characterization of such links is important for clarifying the molecular basis for adipocyte proliferation and could have implications for understanding the biology of metabolic disease-related neuropathies.

  8. The Neuronal Sortilin-Related Receptor Gene SORL1 and Late-Onset Alzheimer's Disease

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Joseph H.; Barral, Sandra; Reitz, Christiane

    2009-01-01

    Recent studies indicate that two clusters of single nucleotide polymorphisms in the neuronal sortilin-related receptor gene (SORL1) are causally associated with late-onset Alzheimer's disease (AD). At the cellular level, SORL1 is thought to be involved in intracellular trafficking of amyloid precursor protein. When this gene is suppressed, toxic amyloid β production is increased, and high levels of amyloid β are associated with a higher AD risk. Extending the cellular findings, gene expression studies show that SORL1 is differentially expressed in AD patients compared with controls. Furthermore, several genetic studies have identified allelic and haplotypic SORL1 variants associated with late-onset AD, and these variants confer small to modest risk of AD. Taken together, the evidence for SORL1 as a causative gene is compelling. However, putative variants have not yet been identified. Further research is necessary to determine its utility as a diagnostic marker of AD or as a target for new therapeutic approaches. PMID:18713574

  9. Neuron-specific specificity protein 4 bigenomically regulates the transcription of all mitochondria- and nucleus-encoded cytochrome c oxidase subunit genes in neurons.

    PubMed

    Johar, Kaid; Priya, Anusha; Dhar, Shilpa; Liu, Qiuli; Wong-Riley, Margaret T T

    2013-11-01

    Neurons are highly dependent on oxidative metabolism for their energy supply, and cytochrome c oxidase (COX) is a key energy-generating enzyme in the mitochondria. A unique feature of COX is that it is one of only four proteins in mammalian cells that are bigenomically regulated. Of its thirteen subunits, three are encoded in the mitochondrial genome and ten are nuclear-encoded on nine different chromosomes. The mechanism of regulating this multisubunit, bigenomic enzyme poses a distinct challenge. In recent years, we found that nuclear respiratory factors 1 and 2 (NRF-1 and NRF-2) mediate such bigenomic coordination. The latest candidate is the specificity factor (Sp) family of proteins. In N2a cells, we found that Sp1 regulates all 13 COX subunits. However, we discovered recently that in primary neurons, it is Sp4 and not Sp1 that regulates some of the key glutamatergic receptor subunit genes. The question naturally arises as to the role of Sp4 in regulating COX in primary neurons. The present study utilized multiple approaches, including chromatin immunoprecipitation, promoter mutational analysis, knockdown and over-expression of Sp4, as well as functional assays to document that Sp4 indeed functionally regulate all 13 subunits of COX as well as mitochondrial transcription factors A and B. The present study discovered that among the specificity family of transcription factors, it is the less known neuron-specific Sp4 that regulates the expression of all 13 subunits of mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase (COX) enzyme in primary neurons. Sp4 also regulates the three mitochondrial transcription factors (TFAM, TFB1M, and TFB2M) and a COX assembly protein SURF-1 in primary neurons.

  10. Ovarian steroids regulate gene expression related to DNA repair and neurodegenerative diseases in serotonin neurons of macaques

    PubMed Central

    Bethea, Cynthia L.; Reddy, Arubala P.

    2015-01-01

    Depression often accompanies the peri-menopausal transition and it often precedes overt symptomology in common neurodegenerative diseases (NDD; Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, Huntington, ALS). Serotonin dysfunction is frequently found in the different etiologies of depression. We have shown that ovariectomized (Ovx) monkeys treated with estradiol (E) for 28 days supplement with placebo or progesterone (P) on days 14-28 had reduced DNA fragmentation in serotonin neurons of the dorsal raphe nucleus; and long-term Ovx monkeys had fewer serotonin neurons than intact controls. We questioned the effect of E alone or E+P on gene expression related to DNA repair, protein folding (chaperones), the ubiquitin proteosome, axon transport, and NDD specific genes in serotonin neurons. Ovx macaques were treated with placebo, E or E+P (n=3/group) for 1 month. Serotonin neurons were laser captured and subjected to microarray analysis and qRT-PCR. Increases were confirmed with qRT-PCR in 5 genes that code for proteins involved in repair of strand breaks and nucleotide excision. NBN1, PCNA, GADD45A, RAD23A and GTF2H5 significantly increased with E or E+P treatment (all ANOVA p< 0.01). Chaperone genes HSP70, HSP60 and HSP27 significantly increased with E or E+P treatment (all ANOVA p<0.05). HSP90 showed a similar trend. Ubiquinase coding genes UBEA5, UBE2D3 and UBE3A (Parkin) increased with E or E+P (all ANOVA p<0.003). Transport related genes coding kinesin, dynein, and dynactin increased with E or E+P (all ANOVA p<0.03). SCNA (α synuclein) and ADAM10 (α secretase) increased (both ANOVA p<0.02), but PSEN1 (presenilin1) decreased (ANOVA p<0.02) with treatment. APP decreased 10-fold with E or E+P administration. Newman-Keuls posthoc comparisons indicated variation in the response to E alone versus E+P across the different genes. In summary, E or E+P increased gene expression for DNA repair mechanisms in serotonin neurons, thereby rendering them less vulnerable to stress-induced DNA

  11. Bacteriophage WO Can Mediate Horizontal Gene Transfer in Endosymbiotic Wolbachia Genomes

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Guan H.; Sun, Bao F.; Xiong, Tuan L.; Wang, Yan K.; Murfin, Kristen E.; Xiao, Jin H.; Huang, Da W.

    2016-01-01

    Phage-mediated horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is common in free-living bacteria, and many transferred genes can play a significant role in their new bacterial hosts. However, there are few reports concerning phage-mediated HGT in endosymbionts (obligate intracellular bacteria within animal or plant hosts), such as Wolbachia. The Wolbachia-infecting temperate phage WO can actively shift among Wolbachia genomes and has the potential to mediate HGT between Wolbachia strains. In the present study, we extend previous findings by validating that the phage WO can mediate transfer of non-phage genes. To do so, we utilized bioinformatic, phylogenetic, and molecular analyses based on all sequenced Wolbachia and phage WO genomes. Our results show that the phage WO can mediate HGT between Wolbachia strains, regardless of whether the transferred genes originate from Wolbachia or other unrelated bacteria. PMID:27965627

  12. SAFETY AND EFFICIENCY OF MODULATING PARACELLULAR PERMEABILITY TO ENHANCE AIRWAY EPITHELIAL GENE TRANSFER IN VIVO

    EPA Science Inventory


    ABSTRACT

    We evaluated the safety of agents that enhance gene transfer by modulating paracellular permeability. Lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) and cytokine release were measured in polarized primary human airway epithelial (HAE) cells after luminal application of vehicle, ...

  13. Genome-wide identification of horizontal gene transfer in Fusarium verticillioides

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT), the exchange and stable integration of genetic material between different lineages, breaks species boundaries and generates new biological diversity. In eukaryotes, despite potential barriers, like the nuclear envelope and multicellularity, HGT may be facilitated by t...

  14. Intrapleural 'outside-in' gene therapy: therapeutics for organs of the chest via gene transfer to the pleura.

    PubMed

    Heguy, Adriana; Crystal, Ronald G

    2005-10-01

    The pleural space is an attractive site for using viral vectors to deliver gene products to the lung parenchyma, other thoracic structures and the systemic circulation. The advantages of intrapleural gene transfer using viral vectors include: (i) easy accessibility; (ii) large surface area; (iii) ability to provide high concentrations of secreted gene products to chest structures; (iv) low risk of detrimental effects of possible vector-induced inflammation compared with intravascular delivery; and (v) because it is local, lower vector doses can be used to deliver therapeutic genes to thoracic structures than less efficient systemic routes. Examples of pleural gene transfer include the use of adenovirus vectors to treat mesothelioma by transiently expressing genes that encode toxic proteins, immunomodulatory molecules or anti-angiogenesis factors. Intrapleural delivery of adeno-associated viral vectors represents an efficient strategy to treat alpha1-antitrypsin (alpha1AT) deficiency, achieving high lung and systemic therapeutic levels of alpha1AT. Intrapleural delivery of gene transfer vectors holds promise for the treatment of diseases requiring transient, localized gene expression, as well as sustained expression of genes to correct hereditary disorders requiring localized or systemic expression of the therapeutic protein.

  15. Mechanisms by Which 17β-Estradiol (E2) Suppress Neuronal cox-2 Gene Expression

    PubMed Central

    Stacey, Winfred; Bhave, Shreyas; Uht, Rosalie M.

    2016-01-01

    E2 attenuates inflammatory responses by suppressing expression of pro-inflammatory genes. Given that inflammation is increasingly being associated with neurodegenerative and psychiatric processes, we sought to elucidate mechanisms by which E2 down-regulates a component of an inflammatory response, cyclooxygenase– 2 (COX-2) expression. Although inflammatory processes in the brain are usually associated with microglia and astrocytes, we found that the COX-2 gene (cox-2) was expressed in a neuronal context, specifically in an amygdalar cell line (AR-5). Given that COX-2 has been reported to be in neurons in the brain, and that the amygdala is a site involved in neurodegenerative and neuropsychiatric processes, we investigated mechanisms by which E2 could down-regulate cox-2 expression in the AR-5 line. These cells express estrogen receptors alpha (ERα) and beta (ERβ), and as shown here cox-2. At the level of RNA, E2 and the ERβ selective ligand diarylpropionitrile (DPN) both attenuated gene expression, whereas the ERα selective ligand propyl pyrazole triol (PPT) had no effect. Neither ligand increased ERβ at the cox-2 promoter. Rather, DPN decreased promoter occupancy of NF-κB p65 and histone 4 (H4) acetylation. Treatment with the non-specific HDAC inhibitor Trichostatin A (TSA) counteracted DPN’s repressive effects on cox-2 expression. In keeping with the TSA effect, E2 and DPN increased histone deacetylase one (HDAC1) and switch-independent 3A (Sin3A) promoter occupancy. Lastly, even though E2 increased CpG methylation, DPN did not. Taken together, the pharmacological data indicate that ERβ contributes to neuronal cox-2 expression, as measured by RNA levels. Furthermore, ER ligands lead to increased recruitment of HDAC1, Sin3A and a concomitant reduction of p65 occupancy and Ac-H4 levels. None of the events, however, are associated with a significant recruitment of ERβ at the promoter. Thus, ERβ directs recruitment to the cox-2 promoter, but does so in

  16. A statistical model for bacterial speciation triggered by lateral gene transfer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sidhu, Sunjeet; Peng, Wequin

    2006-03-01

    The process of bacterial speciation has been a major unresolved issue in the study of bacterial evolution. It has been proposed that lateral gene transfer and homologous recombination play critical and complementary roles in speciation. We introduce a statistical model, of a population, for the evolution under lateral gene transfer and local homologous recombination. We examine the evolutionary dynamics and its dependence on various evolutionary operators. J. G. Lawrence, Theor. Popul. Biol. 61, 449(2002).

  17. Fabrication of DNA-antibody-apatite composite layers for cell-targeted gene transfer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2012-12-01

    Surface-mediated gene transfer systems using apatite (Ap)-based composite layers have received increased attention in tissue engineering applications owing to their safety, biocompatibility and relatively high efficiency. In this study, DNA-antibody-apatite composite layers (DA-Ap layers), in which DNA and antibody molecules are immobilized within a matrix of apatite nanocrystals, were fabricated using a biomimetic coating process. They were then assayed for their gene transfer capability for application in a specific cell-targeted gene transfer. A DA-Ap layer that was fabricated with an anti-CD49f antibody showed a higher gene transfer capability to the CD49f-positive CHO-K1 cells than a DNA-apatite composite layer (D-Ap layer). The antibody facilitated the gene transfer capability of the DA-Ap layer only to the specific cells that were expressing corresponding antigens. When the DA-Ap layer was fabricated with an anti-N-cadherin antibody, a higher gene transfer capability compared with the D-Ap layer was found in the N-cadherin-positive P19CL6 cells, but not in the N-cadherin-negative UV♀2 cells or in the P19CL6 cells that were pre-blocked with anti-N-cadherin. Therefore, the antigen-antibody binding that takes place at the cell-layer interface should be responsible for the higher gene transfer capability of the DA-Ap than D-Ap layer. These results suggest that the DA-Ap layer works as a mediator in a specific cell-targeted gene transfer system.

  18. Fabrication of DNA-antibody-apatite composite layers for cell-targeted gene transfer.

    PubMed

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

    2012-12-01

    Surface-mediated gene transfer systems using apatite (Ap)-based composite layers have received increased attention in tissue engineering applications owing to their safety, biocompatibility and relatively high efficiency. In this study, DNA-antibody-apatite composite layers (DA-Ap layers), in which DNA and antibody molecules are immobilized within a matrix of apatite nanocrystals, were fabricated using a biomimetic coating process. They were then assayed for their gene transfer capability for application in a specific cell-targeted gene transfer. A DA-Ap layer that was fabricated with an anti-CD49f antibody showed a higher gene transfer capability to the CD49f-positive CHO-K1 cells than a DNA-apatite composite layer (D-Ap layer). The antibody facilitated the gene transfer capability of the DA-Ap layer only to the specific cells that were expressing corresponding antigens. When the DA-Ap layer was fabricated with an anti-N-cadherin antibody, a higher gene transfer capability compared with the D-Ap layer was found in the N-cadherin-positive P19CL6 cells, but not in the N-cadherin-negative UV♀2 cells or in the P19CL6 cells that were pre-blocked with anti-N-cadherin. Therefore, the antigen-antibody binding that takes place at the cell-layer interface should be responsible for the higher gene transfer capability of the DA-Ap than D-Ap layer. These results suggest that the DA-Ap layer works as a mediator in a specific cell-targeted gene transfer system.

  19. Plasticity-related Gene 5 Promotes Spine Formation in Murine Hippocampal Neurons*

    PubMed Central

    Coiro, Pierluca; Stoenica, Luminita; Strauss, Ulf; Bräuer, Anja Ursula

    2014-01-01

    The transmembrane protein plasticity-related genes 3 and 5 (PRG3 and PRG5) increase filopodial formation in various cell lines, independently of Cdc42. However, information on the effects of PRG5 during neuronal development is sparse. Here, we present several lines of evidence for the involvement of PRG5 in the genesis and stabilization of dendritic spines. First, PRG5 was strongly expressed during mouse brain development from embryonic day 14 (E14), peaked around the time of birth, and remained stable at least until early adult stages (i.e. P30). Second, on a subcellular level, PRG5 expression shifted from an equal distribution along all neurites toward accumulation only along dendrites during hippocampal development in vitro. Third, overexpression of PRG5 in immature hippocampal neurons induced formation of spine-like structures ahead of time. Proper amino acid sequences in the extracellular domains (D1 to D3) of PRG5 were a prerequisite for trafficking and induction of spine-like structures, as shown by mutation analysis. Fourth, at stages when spines are present, knockdown of PRG5 reduced the number but not the length of protrusions. This was accompanied by a decrease in the number of excitatory synapses and, consequently, by a reduction of miniature excitatory postsynaptic current frequencies, although miniature excitatory postsynaptic current amplitudes remained similar. In turn, overexpressing PRG5 in mature neurons not only increased Homer-positive spine numbers but also augmented spine head diameters. Mechanistically, PRG5 interacts with phosphorylated phosphatidylinositols, phospholipids involved in dendritic spine formation by different lipid-protein assays. Taken together, our data propose that PRG5 promotes spine formation. PMID:25074937

  20. Glutamatergic neuron-targeted loss of LGI1 epilepsy gene results in seizures

    PubMed Central

    Boillot, Morgane; Huneau, Clément; Marsan, Elise; Lehongre, Katia; Navarro, Vincent; Ishida, Saeko; Dufresnois, Béatrice; Ozkaynak, Ekim; Garrigue, Jérôme; Miles, Richard; Martin, Benoit; Leguern, Eric; Anderson, Matthew P.

    2014-01-01

    Leucin-rich, glioma inactivated 1 (LGI1) is a secreted protein linked to human seizures of both genetic and autoimmune aetiology. Mutations in the LGI1 gene are responsible for autosomal dominant temporal lobe epilepsy with auditory features, whereas LGI1 autoantibodies are involved in limbic encephalitis, an acquired epileptic disorder associated with cognitive impairment. We and others previously reported that Lgi1-deficient mice have early-onset spontaneous seizures leading to premature death at 2–3 weeks of age. Yet, where and when Lgi1 deficiency causes epilepsy remains unknown. To address these questions, we generated Lgi1 conditional knockout (cKO) mice using a set of universal Cre-driver mouse lines. Selective deletion of Lgi1 was achieved in glutamatergic pyramidal neurons during embryonic (Emx1-Lgi1cKO) or late postnatal (CaMKIIα-Lgi1cKO) developmental stages, or in gamma amino butyric acidergic (GABAergic) parvalbumin interneurons (PV-Lgi1cKO). Emx1-Lgi1cKO mice displayed early-onset and lethal seizures, whereas CaMKIIα-Lgi1cKO mice presented late-onset occasional seizures associated with variable reduced lifespan. In contrast, neither spontaneous seizures nor increased seizure susceptibility to convulsant were observed when Lgi1 was deleted in parvalbumin interneurons. Together, these data showed that LGI1 depletion restricted to pyramidal cells is sufficient to generate seizures, whereas seizure thresholds were unchanged after depletion in gamma amino butyric acidergic parvalbumin interneurons. We suggest that LGI1 secreted from excitatory neurons, but not parvalbumin inhibitory neurons, makes a major contribution to the pathogenesis of LGI1-related epilepsies. Our data further indicate that LGI1 is required from embryogenesis to adulthood to achieve proper circuit functioning. PMID:25234641

  1. A Functionally Conserved Gene Regulatory Network Module Governing Olfactory Neuron Diversity

    PubMed Central

    Okuwa, Sumie; Maciejewski, Abigail; Brandt, Alicia T.; Reinhold, Dominik; Jones, Corbin D.; Volkan, Pelin Cayirlioglu

    2016-01-01

    Sensory neuron diversity is required for organisms to decipher complex environmental cues. In Drosophila, the olfactory environment is detected by 50 different olfactory receptor neuron (ORN) classes that are clustered in combinations within distinct sensilla subtypes. Each sensilla subtype houses stereotypically clustered 1–4 ORN identities that arise through asymmetric divisions from a single multipotent sensory organ precursor (SOP). How each class of SOPs acquires a unique differentiation potential that accounts for ORN diversity is unknown. Previously, we reported a critical component of SOP diversification program, Rotund (Rn), increases ORN diversity by generating novel developmental trajectories from existing precursors within each independent sensilla type lineages. Here, we show that Rn, along with BarH1/H2 (Bar), Bric-à-brac (Bab), Apterous (Ap) and Dachshund (Dac), constitutes a transcription factor (TF) network that patterns the developing olfactory tissue. This network was previously shown to pattern the segmentation of the leg, which suggests that this network is functionally conserved. In antennal imaginal discs, precursors with diverse ORN differentiation potentials are selected from concentric rings defined by unique combinations of these TFs along the proximodistal axis of the developing antennal disc. The combinatorial code that demarcates each precursor field is set up by cross-regulatory interactions among different factors within the network. Modifications of this network lead to predictable changes in the diversity of sensilla subtypes and ORN pools. In light of our data, we propose a molecular map that defines each unique SOP fate. Our results highlight the importance of the early prepatterning gene regulatory network as a modulator of SOP and terminally differentiated ORN diversity. Finally, our model illustrates how conserved developmental strategies are used to generate neuronal diversity. PMID:26765103

  2. A Functionally Conserved Gene Regulatory Network Module Governing Olfactory Neuron Diversity.

    PubMed

    Li, Qingyun; Barish, Scott; Okuwa, Sumie; Maciejewski, Abigail; Brandt, Alicia T; Reinhold, Dominik; Jones, Corbin D; Volkan, Pelin Cayirlioglu

    2016-01-01

    Sensory neuron diversity is required for organisms to decipher complex environmental cues. In Drosophila, the olfactory environment is detected by 50 different olfactory receptor neuron (ORN) classes that are clustered in combinations within distinct sensilla subtypes. Each sensilla subtype houses stereotypically clustered 1-4 ORN identities that arise through asymmetric divisions from a single multipotent sensory organ precursor (SOP). How each class of SOPs acquires a unique differentiation potential that accounts for ORN diversity is unknown. Previously, we reported a critical component of SOP diversification program, Rotund (Rn), increases ORN diversity by generating novel developmental trajectories from existing precursors within each independent sensilla type lineages. Here, we show that Rn, along with BarH1/H2 (Bar), Bric-à-brac (Bab), Apterous (Ap) and Dachshund (Dac), constitutes a transcription factor (TF) network that patterns the developing olfactory tissue. This network was previously shown to pattern the segmentation of the leg, which suggests that this network is functionally conserved. In antennal imaginal discs, precursors with diverse ORN differentiation potentials are selected from concentric rings defined by unique combinations of these TFs along the proximodistal axis of the developing antennal disc. The combinatorial code that demarcates each precursor field is set up by cross-regulatory interactions among different factors within the network. Modifications of this network lead to predictable changes in the diversity of sensilla subtypes and ORN pools. In light of our data, we propose a molecular map that defines each unique SOP fate. Our results highlight the importance of the early prepatterning gene regulatory network as a modulator of SOP and terminally differentiated ORN diversity. Finally, our model illustrates how conserved developmental strategies are used to generate neuronal diversity.

  3. Extensive beta-glucuronidase activity in murine central nervous system after adenovirus-mediated gene transfer to brain.

    PubMed

    Ghodsi, A; Stein, C; Derksen, T; Yang, G; Anderson, R D; Davidson, B L

    1998-11-01

    Mucopolysaccharidosis type VII (MPS VII), caused by beta-glucuronidase deficiency, is a classic lysosomal storage disease. In the central nervous system (CNS), there is widespread pathology with distention of vacuoles in neurons and glia. An approach to therapy for MPS VII would require extensive delivery of enzyme to the CNS and subsequent uptake by the affected cells. In this study we show that intrastriatal injection of recombinant adenovirus encoding beta-glucuronidase (Ad betagluc) to MPS VII or wild-type mice results in focal, intense beta-glucuronidase mRNA expression near the injection site. Further, histochemical staining for enzyme activity showed that beta-glucuronidase activity extended well beyond transduced cells. Activity was detected throughout the ipsilateral striatum as well as in the corpus callosum, ventricles, and bilateral neocortex. Similarly, after injection into the right lateral ventricle or cisterna magna, enzyme activity was present in the ependymal cells of the ventricles, in the subarachnoid spaces, and also in the underlying cortex (150-500 microm from ependyma). The distribution of enzyme was most extensive 21 days after gene transfer to normal mouse brain, with more than 50% of the hemisphere positive for beta-glucuronidase activity. Eighty-four days after adenovirus injection a substantial level of enzyme expression remained (>40% of hemisphere positive for beta-glucuronidase activity). Histological sections from striatum of beta-glucuronidase-deficient mice injected with Ad betagluc showed a marked reduction in the number of distended vacuoles in both neurons and glia, as compared with uninjected striatum. Importantly, correction was noted in both hemispheres. Our finding that a relatively small number of transduced cells produce enzyme that reaches a large proportion of the CNS has favorable implications in developing direct gene transfer therapies for lysosomal storage disorders.

  4. Ischemic preconditioning inhibits over-expression of arginyl-tRNA synthetase gene Rars in ischemia-injured neurons.

    PubMed

    Shen, Yin; Zhao, Hong-Yang; Wang, Hai-Jun; Wang, Wen-Liang; Zhang, Li-Zhi; Fu, Rong

    2016-08-01

    The expression changes of Rars gene in ischemia-injured neurons were investigated by detecting its translational product arginyl-tRNA synthetase (ArgRS), and the inhibitory effects of ischemic preconditioning (IPC) on Rars gene were explored. Both IPC model and prolonged ischemia (PI) model were established by using the classic oxygen glucose deprivation (OGD) method. The primary cultured neurons were assigned into the following groups: the experimental group (IPC+PI group), undergoing PI after a short period of IPC; the conditional control group (PI control group), subjected to PI without IPC; blank control group, the normally cultured neurons. The Rars transcriptional activities and ArgRS expression levels were measured at different time points after re-oxygenation (3 h/6 h/12 h/24 h). Data were collected and statistically analyzed. Compared to the blank control group, the Rars activities and ArgRS levels were significantly increased in PI control group, peaking at the time point of 6 h after re-oxygenation. Rars activities and ArgRS levels were significantly lower in the experimental group than in the PI control group at different time points after re-oxygenation. PI insult can induce an escalating activity of Rars and lead to ArgRS over-expression in primary cultured neurons. IPC can inhibit the increased Rars activity and down-regulate ArgRS expression of ischemia-insulted neurons. This mechanism may confer ischemic tolerance on neurons.

  5. Chronic Treatment with Anti-bipolar Drugs Down-Regulates Gene Expression of TRPC1 in Neurones

    PubMed Central

    Du, Ting; Rong, Yan; Feng, Rui; Verkhratsky, Alexei; Peng, Liang

    2017-01-01

    In the brain, TRPC1 channels are abundantly expressed in neurones virtually in all regions; these proteins function as receptor-activated ion channels and are implicated in numerous processes, being specifically important for neurogenesis. Primary cultures of mouse cerebellar granule cell, cerebral cortical neurones, and freshly isolated neurones from in vivo brains were used to study effects of chronic treatment with anti-bipolar drugs [carbamazepine (CBZ), lithium salts and valproic acid] on gene expression of TRPC1. Expression of TRPC1 mRNA was identified with reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction, whereas protein content was determined by Western blotting. Store-operated plasmalemmal Ca2+ entry (SOCE) was measured with fura-2 based microfluorimetry. Chronic treatment with each of the three drugs down-regulated mRNA and protein expression in cultured cerebellar granule cells in a time- and concentration-dependent manner. Similar effect was also observed in cultured cerebral cortical neurones treated with CBZ, lithium salts and valproic acid and in freshly isolated neurones from the brains of CBZ-treated animals. The amplitude of SOCE was substantially decreased in cerebellar granule cells chronically treated with each of the three drugs. Our findings indicate that down-regulation of TRPC1 gene expression and function in neurones may be one of the mechanisms of anti-bipolar drugs action. PMID:28119572

  6. C. elegans SoxB genes are dispensable for embryonic neurogenesis but required for terminal differentiation of specific neuron types

    PubMed Central

    Vidal, Berta; Santella, Anthony; Serrano-Saiz, Esther; Bao, Zhirong; Chuang, Chiou-Fen; Hobert, Oliver

    2015-01-01

    Neurogenesis involves deeply conserved patterning molecules, such as the proneural basic helix-loop-helix transcription factors. Sox proteins and specifically members of the SoxB and SoxC groups are another class of conserved transcription factors with an important role in neuronal fate commitment and differentiation in various species. In this study, we examine the expression of all five Sox genes of the nematode C. elegans and analyze the effect of null mutant alleles of all members of the SoxB and SoxC groups on nervous system development. Surprisingly, we find that, unlike in other systems, neither of the two C. elegans SoxB genes sox-2 (SoxB1) and sox-3 (SoxB2), nor the sole C. elegans SoxC gene sem-2, is broadly expressed throughout the embryonic or adult nervous system and that all three genes are mostly dispensable for embryonic neurogenesis. Instead, sox-2 is required to maintain the developmental potential of blast cells that are generated in the embryo but divide only postembryonically to give rise to differentiated neuronal cell types. Moreover, sox-2 and sox-3 have selective roles in the terminal differentiation of specific neuronal cell types. Our findings suggest that the common themes of SoxB gene function across phylogeny lie in specifying developmental potential and, later on, in selectively controlling terminal differentiation programs of specific neuron types, but not in broadly controlling neurogenesis. PMID:26153233

  7. The effect of deafness duration on neurotrophin gene therapy for spiral ganglion neuron protection.

    PubMed

    Wise, Andrew K; Tu, Tian; Atkinson, Patrick J; Flynn, Brianna O; Sgro, Beatrice E; Hume, Cliff; O'Leary, Stephen J; Shepherd, Robert K; Richardson, Rachael T

    2011-08-01

    A cochlear implant can restore hearing function by electrically exciting spiral ganglion neurons (SGNs) in the deaf cochlea. However, following deafness SGNs undergo progressive degeneration ultimately leading to their death. One significant cause of SGN degeneration is the loss of neurotrophic support that is normally provided by cells within the organ of Corti (OC). The administration of exogenous neurotrophins (NTs) can protect SGNs from degeneration but the effects are short-lived once the source of NTs has been exhausted. NT gene therapy, whereby cells within the cochlea are transfected with genes enabling them to produce NTs, is one strategy for providing a cellular source of NTs that may provide long-term support for SGNs. As the SGNs normally innervate sensory cells within the OC, targeting residual OC cells for gene therapy in the deaf cochlea may provide a source of NTs for SGN protection and targeted regrowth of their peripheral fibers. However, the continual degeneration of the OC over extended periods of deafness may deplete the cellular targets for NT gene therapy and hence limit the effectiveness of this method in preventing SGN loss. This study examined the effects of deafness duration on the efficacy of NT gene therapy in preventing SGN loss in guinea pigs that were systemically deafened with aminoglycosides. Adenoviral vectors containing green fluorescent protein (GFP) with or without genes for Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) and Neurotrophin-3 (NT3) were injected into the scala media (SM) compartment of cochleae that had been deafened for one, four or eight weeks prior to the viral injection. The results showed that viral transfection of cells within the SM was still possible even after severe degeneration of the OC. Supporting cells (pillar and Deiters' cells), cells within the stria vascularis, the spiral ligament, endosteal cells lining the scala compartments and interdental cells in the spiral limbus were transfected. However, the

  8. Immune deficiency enhances expression of recombinant human antibody in mice after nonviral in vivo gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Kitaguchi, Kohji; Toda, Mikako; Takekoshi, Masataka; Maeda, Fumiko; Muramatsu, Tatsuo; Murai, Atsushi

    2005-10-01

    A cDNA encoding human antibody against hepatitis B virus was expressed in normal and severe combined immune deficiency (SCID) mice to clarify whether or not host immune status affects circulating levels of the recombinant human antibody (RhAb) after nonviral in vivo gene transfer. For transferring genes, either electroporation (EP) or hydrodynamics-based transfection (HD) was employed. The former was applied to the leg muscle to express the gene, while the latter primarily targeted foreign gene expression in the liver. The expressed RhAb was secreted into the blood circulation, and its existence was assayed by ELISA. Prior to the investigation of host immune status, suitable forms of plasmid expression vectors and types of electrodes were determined in normal mice. Results showed that the vector encoding both the light and heavy chains driven by the CMV promoter had the highest plasma RhAb concentrations, and a pair of pincette-type electrodes conferred the best performance. In both EP and HD, the SCID state showed an increased and prolonged RhAb production in the blood circulation due probably to suppressed recognition of RhAb as a foreign protein to the host animal. The difference in gene transfer methods demonstrated a characteristic pattern: an early and sharp rise followed by a relatively rapid decrease in HD, in contrast to a gradual rise followed by a plateau level maintained in EP. As a result, with the same amount of gene transferred, the plasma RhAb concentrations for the first 7 or 8 weeks were higher in HD than EP, while the reverse was true for the latter period. Multiple gene transfer contributed to maintaining and prolonging high RhAb concentrations in plasma by both methods with similar characteristic patterns accompanying the respective gene transfer method. These results suggest the importance of host immunological potency for maintaining plasma RhAb concentrations if these gene transfer technologies are used for clinical and therapeutic purposes.

  9. Somatic nonhomologous crossing-over between neuropeptide genes in rat hypothalamic neurons.

    PubMed Central

    Mohr, E; Peters, A; Morris, J F; Richter, D

    1994-01-01

    Molecular biological and immunocytochemical data demonstrate nonhomologous crossing-over between the closely linked vasopressin (VP) and oxytocin (OT) genes in rat hypothalamic neuroendocrine neurons. Reverse transcription of hypothalamic total RNA from wild-type or homozygous Brattleboro aged rats combined with polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplifications in the presence of appropriate 5' forward and 3' reverse primers deduced from the VP and OT cDNA sequences yielded PCR products that, upon cloning and sequencing, revealed several hybrid transcripts. They encode the N-terminal part of the VP precursor fused to the C-terminal part of the OT precursor (VP/OT transcripts) and vice versa (OT/VP transcripts). VP/OT hybrid precursor proteins have been identified immunocytochemically in enlarged cisternae of the rough endoplasmic reticulum, yet there is no evidence that the products can be secreted from affected cells. Recombination appears to be a rather frequent genetic event affecting about 0.06-0.1% of the rat vasopressinergic magnocellular neurons in aged rats. Images PMID:7972073

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

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

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

  11. Direct Gene Transfer into Human Cultured Cells Facilitated by Laser Micropuncture of the Cell Membrane

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tao, Wen; Wilkinson, Joyce; Stanbridge, Eric J.; Berns, Michael W.

    1987-06-01

    The selective alteration of the cellular genome by laser microbeam irradiation has been extensively applied in cell biology. We report here the use of the third harmonic (355 nm) of an yttrium-aluminum garnet laser to facilitate the direct transfer of the neo gene into cultured human HT1080-6TG cells. The resultant transformants were selected in medium containing an aminoglycoside antibiotic, G418. Integration of the neo gene into individual human chromosomes and expression of the gene were demonstrated by Southern blot analyses, microcell-mediated chromosome transfer, and chromosome analyses. The stability of the integrated neo gene in the transformants was shown by a comparative growth assay in selective and nonselective media. Transformation and incorporation of the neo gene into the host genome occurred at a frequency of 8 × 10-4-3 × 10-3. This method appears to be 100-fold more efficient than the standard calcium phosphate-mediated method of DNA transfer.

  12. Horizontal gene transfer from diverse bacteria to an insect genome enables a tripartite nested mealybug symbiosis.

    PubMed

    Husnik, Filip; Nikoh, Naruo; Koga, Ryuichi; Ross, Laura; Duncan, Rebecca P; Fujie, Manabu; Tanaka, Makiko; Satoh, Nori; Bachtrog, Doris; Wilson, Alex C C; von Dohlen, Carol D; Fukatsu, Takema; McCutcheon, John P

    2013-06-20

    The smallest reported bacterial genome belongs to Tremblaya princeps, a symbiont of Planococcus citri mealybugs (PCIT). Tremblaya PCIT not only has a 139 kb genome, but possesses its own bacterial endosymbiont, Moranella endobia. Genome and transcriptome sequencing, including genome sequencing from a Tremblaya lineage lacking intracellular bacteria, reveals that the extreme genomic degeneracy of Tremblaya PCIT likely resulted from acquiring Moranella as an endosymbiont. In addition, at least 22 expressed horizontally transferred genes from multiple diverse bacteria to the mealybug genome likely complement missing symbiont genes. However, none of these horizontally transferred genes are from Tremblaya, showing that genome reduction in this symbiont has not been enabled by gene transfer to the host nucleus. Our results thus indicate that the functioning of this three-way symbiosis is dependent on genes from at least six lineages of organisms and reveal a path to intimate endosymbiosis distinct from that followed by organelles.

  13. Herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1)-derived recombinant vectors for gene transfer and gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Marconi, Peggy; Fraefel, Cornel; Epstein, Alberto L

    2015-01-01

    Herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1 ) is a human pathogen whose lifestyle is based on a long-term dual interaction with the infected host, being able to establish both lytic and latent infections. The virus genome is a 153-kilobase pair (kbp) double-stranded DNA molecule encoding more than 80 genes. The interest of HSV-1 as gene transfer vector stems from its ability to infect many different cell types, both quiescent and proliferating cells, the very high packaging capacity of the virus capsid, the outstanding neurotropic adaptations that this virus has evolved, and the fact that it never integrates into the cellular chromosomes, thus avoiding the risk of insertional mutagenesis. Two types of vectors can be derived from HSV-1, recombinant vectors and amplicon vectors, and different methodologies have been developed to prepare large stocks of each type of vector. This chapter summarizes the approach most commonly used to prepare recombinant HSV-1 vectors through homologous recombination, either in eukaryotic cells or in bacteria.

  14. Sexually dimorphic control of gene expression in sensory neurons regulates decision-making behavior in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Hilbert, Zoë A; Kim, Dennis H

    2017-01-24

    Animal behavior is directed by the integration of sensory information from internal states and the environment. Neuroendocrine regulation of diverse behaviors of Caenorhabditis elegans is under the control of the DAF-7/TGF-β ligand that is secreted from sensory neurons. Here, we show that C. elegans males exhibit an altered, male-specific expression pattern of daf-7 in the ASJ sensory neuron pair with the onset of reproductive maturity, which functions to promote male-specific mate-searching behavior. Molecular genetic analysis of the switch-like regulation of daf-7 expression in the ASJ neuron pair reveals a hierarchy of regulation among multiple inputs-sex, age, nutritional status, and microbial environment-which function in the modulation of behavior. Our results suggest that regulation of gene expression in sensory neurons can function in the integration of a wide array of sensory information and facilitate decision-making behaviors in C. elegans.

  15. Two closely linked but separable promoters for human neuronal nitric oxide synthase gene transcription.

    PubMed Central

    Xie, J; Roddy, P; Rife, T K; Murad, F; Young, A P

    1995-01-01

    In this report we demonstrate that the human cerebellum contains neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) mRNAs with two distinct 5'-untranslated regions that are encoded through use of closely linked but separate promoters. nNOS cDNA clones were shown to contain different 5' terminal exons spliced to a common exon 2. Genomic cloning and sequence analysis demonstrate that the unique exons are positioned within 300 bp of each other but separated from exon 2 by an intron that is at least 20 kb in length. A CpG island engulfs the downstream 5'-terminal exon. In contrast, most of the upstream exon resides outside of this CpG island. Interestingly, the upstream exon includes a GT dinucleotide repeat. A fusion gene with a 414-bp nNOS genomic fragment that includes a portion of the upstream 5'-terminal exon and its immediate 5'-flanking DNA is expressed in transfected HeLa cells. Also expressed is a fusion gene that contains the luciferase reporter under transcriptional control by a 308-bp genomic fragment that includes the region separating both 5'-terminal exons. These results indicate that expression of these exons is subject to transcriptional control by separate promoters. However, the proximity of these promoters raise the possibility that complex interactions may be involved in regulating nNOS gene expression at these sites. Images Fig. 1 Fig. 4 PMID:7532307

  16. Interleukin-6 gene transfer reverses body weight gain and fatty liver in obese mice.

    PubMed

    Ma, Yongjie; Gao, Mingming; Sun, Hao; Liu, Dexi

    2015-05-01

    Interleukin-6 (IL-6) is a multifunctional protein and has a major influence on energy metabolism. The current study was designed to assess the therapeutic effect of overexpression of Il-6 gene through gene transfer on high fat diet-induced obese mice. Hydrodynamic delivery of 1 μg pLIVE-IL6 plasmid per mouse into C57BL/6 obese mice resulted in peak level at 10 ng/ml of circulating IL-6 1 day after gene transfer and above 1n g/ml thereafter for a period of 6 weeks. Persistent Il-6 gene expression did not affect food intake but induced a significant reduction in body weight and improved obesity-associated hepatic steatosis. Il-6 gene delivery enhanced thermogenic gene expression and elevated protein levels of phosphorylated STAT3, PGC1α and UCP1 in brown adipose tissue. Il-6 overexpression elevated mRNA levels of lipolysis genes, triggered phosphorylation of STAT3, AMPK, and ACC, and increased expression of genes involved in fatty acid oxidation in skeletal muscle. IL-6 did not affect macrophage infiltration but maintained the M2 macrophage population in adipose tissue. Collectively, these results suggest that overexpression of the Il-6 gene by hydrodynamic gene delivery induces weight loss and alleviates obesity-induced fatty liver and insulin resistance, supporting the notion that gene transfer is a valid approach in managing obesity epidemics.

  17. Differential evolutionary rates of neuronal transcriptome in Aplysia kurodai and Aplysia californica as a tool for gene mining.

    PubMed

    Choi, Sun-Lim; Lee, Yong-Seok; Rim, Young-Soo; Kim, Tae-Hyung; Moroz, Leonid L; Kandel, Eric R; Bhak, Jong; Kaang, Bong-Kiun

    2010-07-01

    The marine mollusk Aplysia is a fascinating model organism for studying molecular mechanisms underlying learning and memory. However, evolutionary studies about Aplysia have been limited by the lack of its genomic information. Recently, large-scale expressed sequence tag (EST) databases have been acquired by sequencing cDNA libraries from A. californica and A. kurodai. The closeness between the two species allowed us to investigate rapidly evolving genes by comparing their orthologs. Using this method, we found that a subset of signal transduction genes in neurons showed rates of protein evolution higher than those of housekeeping genes. Moreover, we were also able to find several candidate genes that may be involved in learning and memory or synaptic plasticity among genes showing relatively higher K(a)/K(s) ratios. We also investigated the relationship between evolutionary rates and tissue distribution of Aplysia genes. They propose that the estimation of evolutionary rates cannot be a good marker to assess neuronal expression; however, it still can be an efficient way to narrow down the pool of candidate genes involved in neuronal functions for the further studies.

  18. Identification of potentially neuroprotective genes upregulated by neurotrophin treatment of CA3 neurons in the injured brain.

    PubMed

    Malik, Saafan Z; Motamedi, Shahab; Royo, Nicolas C; LeBold, David; Watson, Deborah J

    2011-03-01

    Specific neurotrophic factors mediate histological and/or functional improvement in animal models of traumatic brain injury (TBI). In previous work, several lines of evidence indicated that the mammalian neurotrophin NT-4/5 is neuroprotective for hippocampal CA3 pyramidal neurons after experimental TBI. We hypothesized that NT-4/5 neuroprotection is mediated by changes in the expression of specific sets of genes, and that NT-4/5-regulated genes are potential therapeutic targets for blocking delayed neuronal death after TBI. In this study, we performed transcription profiling analysis of CA3 neurons to identify genes regulated by lateral fluid percussion injury, or by treatment with the trkB ligands NT-4/5 or brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). The results indicate extensive overlap between genes upregulated by neurotrophins and genes upregulated by injury, suggesting that the mechanism behind neurotrophin neuroprotection may mimic the brain's endogenous protective response. A subset of genes selected for further study in vitro exhibited neuroprotection against glutamate excitotoxicity. The neuroprotective genes identified in this study were upregulated at 30 h post-injury, and are thus expected to act during a clinically useful time frame of hours to days after injury. Modulation of these factors and pathways by genetic manipulation or small molecules may confer hippocampal neuroprotection in vivo in preclinical models of TBI.

  19. Evolutionary transfers of mitochondrial genes to the nucleus in the Populus lineage and coexpression of nuclear and mitochondrial Sdh4 genes.

    PubMed

    Choi, Catherine; Liu, Zhenlan; Adams, Keith L

    2006-01-01

    The transfer of mitochondrial genes to the nucleus is an ongoing evolutionary process in flowering plants. Evolutionarily recent gene transfers provide insights into the evolutionary dynamics of the process and the way in which transferred genes become functional in the nucleus. Genes that are present in the mitochondrion of some angiosperms but have been transferred to the nucleus in the Populus lineage were identified by searches of Populus sequence databases. Sequence analyses and expression experiments were used to characterize the transferred genes. Two succinate dehydrogenase genes and six mitochondrial ribosomal protein genes have been transferred to the nucleus in the Populus lineage and have become expressed. Three transferred genes have gained an N-terminal mitochondrial targeting presequence from other pre-existing genes and two of the transferred genes do not contain an N-terminal targeting presequence. Intact copies of the succinate dehydrogenase gene Sdh4 are present in both the mitochondrion and the nucleus. Both copies of Sdh4 are expressed in multiple organs of two Populus species and RNA editing occurs in the mitochondrial copy. These results provide a genome-wide perspective on mitochondrial genes that were transferred to the nucleus and became expressed, functional genes during the evolutionary history of Populus.

  20. Exploration of horizontal gene transfer between transplastomic tobacco and plant-associated bacteria.

    PubMed

    Demanèche, Sandrine; Monier, Jean-Michel; Dugat-Bony, Eric; Simonet, Pascal

    2011-10-01

    The likelihood of gene transfer from transgenic plants to bacteria is dependent on the transgene copy number and on the presence of homologous sequences for recombination. The large number of chloroplast genomes in a plant cell as well as the prokaryotic origin of the transgene may thus significantly increase the likelihood of gene transfer from transplastomic plants to bacteria. In order to assess the probability of such a transfer, bacterial isolates, screened for their ability to colonize decaying tobacco plant tissue and possessing DNA sequence similarity to the chloroplastic genes accD and rbcL flanking the transgene (aadA), were tested for their ability to take up extracellular DNA (broad host-range pBBR1MCS-3-derived plasmid, transplastomic plant DNA and PCR products containing the genes accD-aadA-rbcL) by natural or electrotransformation. The results showed that among the 16 bacterial isolates tested, six were able to accept foreign DNA and acquire the spectinomycin resistance conferred by the aadA gene on plasmid, but none of them managed to integrate transgenic DNA in their chromosome. Our results provide no indication that the theoretical gene transfer-enhancing properties of transplastomic plants cause horizontal gene transfer at rates above those found in other studies with nuclear transgenes.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-08-20

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

  3. Horizontal transfers of transposable elements in eukaryotes: The flying genes.

    PubMed

    Panaud, Olivier

    2016-01-01

    Transposable elements (TEs) are the major components of eukaryotic genomes. Their propensity to densely populate and in some cases invade the genomes of plants and animals is in contradiction with the fact that transposition is strictly controlled by several molecular pathways acting at either transcriptional or post-transcriptional levels. Horizontal transfers, defined as the transmission of genetic material between sexually isolated species, have long been considered as rare phenomena. Here, we show that the horizontal transfers of transposable elements (HTTs) are very frequent in ecosystems. The exact mechanisms of such transfers are not well understood, but species involved in close biotic interactions, like parasitism, show a propensity to exchange genetic material horizontally. We propose that HTTs allow TEs to escape the silencing machinery of their host genome and may therefore be an important mechanism for their survival and their dissemination in eukaryotes.

  4. Neuropeptide and calcium-binding protein gene expression profiles predict neuronal anatomical type in the juvenile rat

    PubMed Central

    Toledo-Rodriguez, Maria; Goodman, Philip; Illic, Milena; Wu, Caizhi; Markram, Henry

    2005-01-01

    Neocortical neurones can be classified according to several independent criteria: morphological, physiological, and molecular expression (neuropeptides (NPs) and/or calcium-binding proteins (CaBPs)). While it has been suggested that particular NPs and CaBPs characterize certain anatomical subtypes of neurones, there is also considerable overlap in their expression, and little is known about simultaneous expression of multiple NPs and CaBPs in morphologically characterized neocortical neurones. Here we determined the gene expression profiles of calbindin (CB), parvalbumin (PV), calretinin (CR), neuropeptide Y (NPY), vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP), somatostatin (SOM) and cholecystokinin (CCK) in 268 morphologically identified neurones located in layers 2–6 in the juvenile rat somatosensory neocortex. We used patch-clamp electrodes to label neurones with biocytin and harvest the cytoplasm to perform single-cell RT-multiplex PCR. Quality threshold clustering, an unsupervised algorithm that clustered neurones according to their entire profile of expressed genes, revealed seven distinct clusters. Surprisingly, each cluster preferentially contained one anatomical class. Artificial neural networks using softmax regression predicted anatomical types at nearly optimal statistical levels. Classification tree-splitting (CART), a simple binary neuropeptide decision tree algorithm, revealed the manner in which expression of the multiple mRNAs relates to different anatomical classes. Pruning the CART tree revealed the key predictors of anatomical class (in order of importance: SOM, PV, VIP, and NPY). We reveal here, for the first time, a strong relationship between specific combinations of NP and CaBP gene expressions and the anatomical class of neocortical neurones. PMID:15946970

  5. Outer Plexiform Layer Structures Are Not Altered Following AAV-Mediated Gene Transfer in Healthy Rat Retina

    PubMed Central

    Giers, Bert C.; Klein, Daniela; Mendes-Madeira, Alexandra; Isiegas, Carolina; Lorenz, Birgit; Haverkamp, Silke; Stieger, Knut

    2017-01-01

    Ocular gene therapy approaches have been developed for a variety of different diseases. In particular, clinical gene therapy trials for RPE65 mutations, X-linked retinoschisis, and choroideremia have been conducted at different centers in recent years, showing that adeno-associated virus (AAV)-mediated gene therapy is safe, but limitations exist as to the therapeutic benefit and long-term duration of the treatment. The technique of vector delivery to retinal cells relies on subretinal injection of the vector solution, causing a transient retinal detachment. Although retinal detachments are known to cause remodeling of retinal neuronal structures as well as significant cell loss, the possible effects of this short-term therapeutic retinal detachment on retinal structure and circuitry have not yet been studied in detail. In this study, retinal morphology and apoptotic status were examined in healthy rat retinas following AAV-mediated gene transfer via subretinal injection with AAV2/5.CMV.d2GFP or sham injection with fluorescein. Outer plexiform layer (OPL) morphology was assessed by immunohistochemical labeling, laser scanning confocal microscopy, and electron microscopy. The number of synaptic contacts in the OPL was quantified after labeling with structural markers. To assess the apoptotic status, inflammatory and pro-apoptotic markers were tested and TUNEL assay for the detection of apoptotic nuclei was performed. Pre- and postsynaptic structures in the OPL, such as synaptic ribbons or horizontal and bipolar cell processes, did not differ in size or shape in injected versus non-injected areas and control retinas. Absolute numbers of synaptic ribbons were not altered. No signs of relevant gliosis were detected. TUNEL labeling of retinal cells did not vary between injected and non-injected areas, and apoptosis-inducing factor was not delocalized to the nucleus in transduced areas. The neuronal circuits in the OPL of healthy rat retinas undergoing AAV-mediated gene

  6. Outer Plexiform Layer Structures Are Not Altered Following AAV-Mediated Gene Transfer in Healthy Rat Retina.

    PubMed

    Giers, Bert C; Klein, Daniela; Mendes-Madeira, Alexandra; Isiegas, Carolina; Lorenz, Birgit; Haverkamp, Silke; Stieger, Knut

    2017-01-01

    Ocular gene therapy approaches have been developed for a variety of different diseases. In particular, clinical gene therapy trials for RPE65 mutations, X-linked retinoschisis, and choroideremia have been conducted at different centers in recent years, showing that adeno-associated virus (AAV)-mediated gene therapy is safe, but limitations exist as to the therapeutic benefit and long-term duration of the treatment. The technique of vector delivery to retinal cells relies on subretinal injection of the vector solution, causing a transient retinal detachment. Although retinal detachments are known to cause remodeling of retinal neuronal structures as well as significant cell loss, the possible effects of this short-term therapeutic retinal detachment on retinal structure and circuitry have not yet been studied in detail. In this study, retinal morphology and apoptotic status were examined in healthy rat retinas following AAV-mediated gene transfer via subretinal injection with AAV2/5.CMV.d2GFP or sham injection with fluorescein. Outer plexiform layer (OPL) morphology was assessed by immunohistochemical labeling, laser scanning confocal microscopy, and electron microscopy. The number of synaptic contacts in the OPL was quantified after labeling with structural markers. To assess the apoptotic status, inflammatory and pro-apoptotic markers were tested and TUNEL assay for the detection of apoptotic nuclei was performed. Pre- and postsynaptic structures in the OPL, such as synaptic ribbons or horizontal and bipolar cell processes, did not differ in size or shape in injected versus non-injected areas and control retinas. Absolute numbers of synaptic ribbons were not altered. No signs of relevant gliosis were detected. TUNEL labeling of retinal cells did not vary between injected and non-injected areas, and apoptosis-inducing factor was not delocalized to the nucleus in transduced areas. The neuronal circuits in the OPL of healthy rat retinas undergoing AAV-mediated gene

  7. Resurrection of an ancestral gene: functional and evolutionary analyses of the Ngrol genes transferred from Agrobacterium to Nicotiana.

    PubMed

    Aoki, Seishiro

    2004-08-01

    The Ng rol genes, which have high similarity in sequence to the rol genes of Agrobacterium rhizogenes, are present in the genome of untransformed plants of Nicotiana glauca. It is thought that bacterial infection resulted in the transfer of the Ng rol genes to plants early in the evolution of the genus Nicotiana, since several species in this genus contain rol-like sequences but others do not. Plants transformed with the bacterial rol genes exhibit various developmental and morphological changes. The presence of rol-like sequences in plant genomes is therefore thought to have contributed to the evolution of Nicotiana species. This paper focuses on studies of the Ng rol genes in present-day plants and during the evolution of the genus Nicotiana. The functional sequences of several Ng rol genes may have been conserved after their ancient introduction from a bacterium to the plant. Resurrection of an ancestral function of one of the Ng rol genes, as examined by physiological and evolutionary analyses, is also described. The origin of the Ng rol genes is then considered, based on results of molecular phylogenetic analyses. The effects of the horizontal transfer of the Ng rol genes and mutations in the genes are discussed on the plants of the genus Nicotiana during evolution.

  8. Phylogenetic analysis of the incidence of lux gene horizontal transfer in Vibrionaceae.

    PubMed

    Urbanczyk, Henryk; Ast, Jennifer C; Kaeding, Allison J; Oliver, James D; Dunlap, Paul V

    2008-05-01

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is thought to occur frequently in bacteria in nature and to play an important role in bacterial evolution, contributing to the formation of new species. To gain insight into the frequency of HGT in Vibrionaceae and its possible impact on speciation, we assessed the incidence of interspecies transfer of the lux genes (luxCDABEG), which encode proteins involved in luminescence, a distinctive phenotype. Three hundred three luminous strains, most of which were recently isolated from nature and which represent 11 Aliivibrio, Photobacterium, and Vibrio species, were screened for incongruence of phylogenies based on a representative housekeeping gene (gyrB or pyrH) and a representative lux gene (luxA). Strains exhibiting incongruence were then subjected to detailed phylogenetic analysis of horizontal transfer by using multiple housekeeping genes (gyrB, recA, and pyrH) and multiple lux genes (luxCDABEG). In nearly all cases, housekeeping gene and lux gene phylogenies were congruent, and there was no instance in which the lux genes of one luminous species had replaced the lux genes of another luminous species. Therefore, the lux genes are predominantly vertically inherited in Vibrionaceae. The few exceptions to this pattern of congruence were as follows: (i) the lux genes of the only known luminous strain of Vibrio vulnificus, VVL1 (ATCC 43382), were evolutionarily closely related to the lux genes of Vibrio harveyi; (ii) the lux genes of two luminous strains of Vibrio chagasii, 21N-12 and SB-52, were closely related to those of V. harveyi and Vibrio splendidus, respectively; (iii) the lux genes of a luminous strain of Photobacterium damselae, BT-6, were closely related to the lux genes of the lux-rib(2) operon of Photobacterium leiognathi; and (iv) a strain of the luminous bacterium Photobacterium mandapamensis was found to be merodiploid for the lux genes, and the second set of lux genes was closely related to the lux genes of the lux-rib(2

  9. Phylogenetic Analysis of the Incidence of lux Gene Horizontal Transfer in Vibrionaceae▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Urbanczyk, Henryk; Ast, Jennifer C.; Kaeding, Allison J.; Oliver, James D.; Dunlap, Paul V.

    2008-01-01

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) is thought to occur frequently in bacteria in nature and to play an important role in bacterial evolution, contributing to the formation of new species. To gain insight into the frequency of HGT in Vibrionaceae and its possible impact on speciation, we assessed the incidence of interspecies transfer of the lux genes (luxCDABEG), which encode proteins involved in luminescence, a distinctive phenotype. Three hundred three luminous strains, most of which were recently isolated from nature and which represent 11 Aliivibrio, Photobacterium, and Vibrio species, were screened for incongruence of phylogenies based on a representative housekeeping gene (gyrB or pyrH) and a representative lux gene (luxA). Strains exhibiting incongruence were then subjected to detailed phylogenetic analysis of horizontal transfer by using multiple housekeeping genes (gyrB, recA, and pyrH) and multiple lux genes (luxCDABEG). In nearly all cases, housekeeping gene and lux gene phylogenies were congruent, and there was no instance in which the lux genes of one luminous species had replaced the lux genes of another luminous species. Therefore, the lux genes are predominantly vertically inherited in Vibrionaceae. The few exceptions to this pattern of congruence were as follows: (i) the lux genes of the only known luminous strain of Vibrio vulnificus, VVL1 (ATCC 43382), were evolutionarily closely related to the lux genes of Vibrio harveyi; (ii) the lux genes of two luminous strains of Vibrio chagasii, 21N-12 and SB-52, were closely related to those of V. harveyi and Vibrio splendidus, respectively; (iii) the lux genes of a luminous strain of Photobacterium damselae, BT-6, were closely related to the lux genes of the lux-rib2 operon of Photobacterium leiognathi; and (iv) a strain of the luminous bacterium Photobacterium mandapamensis was found to be merodiploid for the lux genes, and the second set of lux genes was closely related to the lux genes of the lux-rib2

  10. Gene expression changes during caste-specific neuronal development in the damp-wood termite Hodotermopsis sjostedti

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background One of the key characters of social insects is the division of labor, in which different tasks are allocated to various castes. In termites, one of the representative groups of social insects, morphological differences as well as behavioral differences can be recognized among castes. However, very little is known about the neuronal and molecular bases of caste differentiation and caste-specific behavior. In almost all termite species, soldiers play defensive roles in their colonies, and their morphology and behavior are largely different from workers (or pseudergates). Therefore, we predicted that some genes linked to defensive behavior and/or those required for neuronal changes are differentially expressed between workers and soldiers, or during the soldier differentiation, respectively. Results Using the brain and suboesophageal ganglion (SOG) of the damp-wood termite Hodotermopsis sjostedti, we first screened genes specifically expressed in soldiers or during soldier differentiation by the differential display method, followed by quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction. No distinctive differences in expression patterns were detected between pseudergates and soldiers. In the course of soldier differentiation, however, five genes were found to be up-regulated in brain and/or SOG: 14-3-3epsilon, fibrillin2, beta-tubulin, ciboulot, and a hypothetical protein containing a SAP motif. Some of these genes are thought to be associated with cytoskeletal structure or motor-associated proteins in neuronal tissues. Conclusion The identified five genes could be involved in soldier-specific neuronal modifications, resulting in defensive behaviors in termite soldiers. The temporal expression patterns of these genes were consistent with the neuronal changes during soldier differentiation, suggesting that molecular machineries, in which the identified factors would participate, play important roles in behavioral differentiation of termite soldiers. PMID

  11. Interleukin 10 gene transfer prevents experimental colitis in rats

    PubMed Central

    Barbara, G; Xing, Z; Hogaboam, C; Gauldie, J; Collins, S

    2000-01-01

    BACKGROUND—The development of colitis in interleukin 10 (IL-10) deficient mice, together with the known anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory properties of this cytokine have prompted consideration of IL-10 as a treatment for inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). However, studies using hrIL-10 in IBD models have yielded inconsistent results.
AIMS—To examine the therapeutic potential of overexpressing the IL-10 gene before and after the induction of experimental colitis in rats.
METHODS—Gene transfer was achieved by intraperitoneal injection of non-replicating human type 5 adenovirus bearing the IL-10 gene, either 24 hours before or one hour after intrarectal administration of dinitrobenzene sulphonic acid in rats. Colonic damage and inflammation was assessed macroscopically and by measuring myeloperoxidase activity and leukotriene B4 concentrations.
RESULTS—Gene transfer increased IL-10 protein in serum for up to six days. IL-10 gene transfer prior to colitis improved colitis macroscopically and histologically, and significantly reduced colonic myeloperoxidase activity and leukotriene B4 concentrations. In contrast, IL-10 gene transfer after the onset of colitis had no beneficial effect.
CONCLUSIONS—Gene therapy using an adenovirus-IL-10 construct was successful in preventing but not in reversing experimental colitis in the rat.


Keywords: gene therapy; colitis; interleukin 10; adenovirus vector; leukotrienes; inflammatory bowel disease; maintenance therapy PMID:10673295

  12. Multilevel populations and the evolution of antibiotic resistance through horizontal gene transfer.

    PubMed

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

    2011-09-01

    Horizontal gene transfer (HGT) can create diversity in the genetic repertoire of a lineage. Successful gene transfer likely occurs more frequently between more closely related organisms, leading to the formation of higher-level exchange groups that in some respects are comparable to single-species populations. Genes that appear fixed in a single species can be replaced through distant homologs or iso-functional analogs acquired through HGT. These genes may originate from other species or they may be acquired by an individual strain from the species pan-genome. Because of their similarity to alleles in a population, we label these gene variants that are exchanged between related species as homeoalleles. In a case study, we show that biased gene transfer plays an important role in the evolution of aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases (aaRS). Many microorganisms make use of these genes against naturally occurring antibiotics. We suggest that the resistance against naturally occurring antibiotics is the likely driving force behind the frequent switching between divergent aaRS types and the reason for the maintenance of these homeoalleles in higher-level exchange groups. Resistance to naturally occurring antibiotics may lead to the maintenance of different types of aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases in Bacteria through gene transfer.

  13. Epilepsy-causing sequence variations in SIK1 disrupt synaptic activity response gene expression and affect neuronal morphology.

    PubMed

    Pröschel, Christoph; Hansen, Jeanne N; Ali, Adil; Tuttle, Emily; Lacagnina, Michelle; Buscaglia, Georgia; Halterman, Marc W; Paciorkowski, Alex R

    2017-02-01

    SIK1 syndrome is a newly described developmental epilepsy disorder caused by heterozygous mutations in the salt-inducible kinase SIK1. To better understand the pathophysiology of SIK1 syndrome, we studied the effects of SIK1 pathogenic sequence variations in human neurons. Primary human fetal cortical neurons were transfected with a lentiviral vector to overexpress wild-type and mutant SIK1 protein. We evaluated the transcriptional activity of known downstream gene targets in neurons expressing mutant SIK1 compared with wild type. We then assayed neuronal morphology by measuring neurite length, number and branching. Truncating SIK1 sequence variations were associated with abnormal MEF2C transcriptional activity and decreased MEF2C protein levels. Epilepsy-causing SIK1 sequence variations were associated with significantly decreased expression of ARC (activity-regulated cytoskeletal-associated) and other synaptic activity response element genes. Assay of mRNA levels for other MEF2C target genes NR4A1 (Nur77) and NRG1, found significantly, decreased the expression of these genes as well. The missense p.(Pro287Thr) SIK1 sequence variation was associated with abnormal neuronal morphology, with significant decreases in mean neurite length, mean number of neurites and a significant increase in proximal branches compared with wild type. Epilepsy-causing SIK1 sequence variations resulted in abnormalities in the MEF2C-ARC pathway of neuronal development and synapse activity response. This work provides the first insights into the mechanisms of pathogenesis in SIK1 syndrome, and extends the ARX-MEF2C pathway in the pathogenesis of developmental epilepsy.

  14. Genome-Wide Expression Analysis Reveals Diverse Effects of Acute Nicotine Exposure on Neuronal Function-Related Genes and Pathways

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Ju; Cui, Wenyan; Wei, Jinxue; Sun, Dongxiao; Gutala, Ramana; Gu, Jun; Li, Ming D.

    2011-01-01

    Previous human and animal studies demonstrate that acute nicotine exposure has complicated influences on the function of the nervous system, which may lead to long-lasting effects on the behavior and physiology of the subject. To determine the genes and pathways that might account for long-term changes after acute nicotine exposure, a pathway-focused oligoarray specifically designed for drug addiction research was used to assess acute nicotine effect on gene expression in the neuron-like SH-SY5Y cells. Our results showed that 295 genes involved in various biological functions were differentially regulated by 1 h of nicotine treatment. Among these genes, the expression changes of 221 were blocked by mecamylamine, indicating that the majority of nicotine-modulated genes were altered through the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs)-mediated signaling process. We further identified 14 biochemical pathways enriched among the nicotine-modulated genes, among which were those involved in neural development/synaptic plasticity, neuronal survival/death, immune response, or cellular metabolism. In the genes significantly regulated by nicotine but blocked by mecamylamine, 13 enriched pathways were detected. Nine of these pathways were shared with those enriched in the genes regulated by nicotine, including neuronal function-related pathways such as glucocorticoid receptor signaling, p38 MAPK signaling, PI3K/AKT signaling, and PTEN signaling, implying that nAChRs play important roles in the regulation of these biological processes. Together, our results not only provide insights into the mechanism underlying the acute response of neuronal cells to nicotine but also provide clues to how acute nicotine exposure exerts long-term effects on the nervous system. PMID:21556275

  15. Studies on the transfer techniques of three maize genes.

    PubMed

    Wang, G; Zhang, H; Ding, Q; Xie, Y; Dai, J

    1996-01-01

    Maize transformation has been carried out through microprojectile bombardment, ultrasonication in a DNA buffer, and ovary-injection with a self-made microinjector. The plasmid pB48.415, which carries a 3'-truncated Bt-toxin protein gene and a hygromycin phosphotransferase (hpt) gene, was used in the transformation. Transgenic maize plants were obtained from immature embryos and embryogenic calli bombarded with a particle gun, embryogenic calli ultrasonicated under different conditions of ovaries injected 10-20 hours after pollination. The results of Dot blotting and Southern blotting analyses proved the integration of the Bt gene into maize genome.

  16. Transcriptomic signatures of neuronal differentiation and their association with risk genes for autism spectrum and related neuropsychiatric disorders

    PubMed Central

    Chiocchetti, A G; Haslinger, D; Stein, J L; de la Torre-Ubieta, L; Cocchi, E; Rothämel, T; Lindlar, S; Waltes, R; Fulda, S; Geschwind, D H; Freitag, C M

    2016-01-01

    Genes for autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are also implicated in fragile X syndrome (FXS), intellectual disabilities (ID) or schizophrenia (SCZ), and converge on neuronal function and differentiation. The SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma cell line, the most widely used system to study neurodevelopment, is currently discussed for its applicability to model cortical development. We implemented an optimal neuronal differentiation protocol of this system and evaluated neurodevelopment at the transcriptomic level using the CoNTeXT framework, a machine-learning algorithm based on human post-mortem brain data estimating developmental stage and regional identity of transcriptomic signatures. Our improved model in contrast to currently used SH-SY5Y models does capture early neurodevelopmental processes with high fidelity. We applied regression modelling, dynamic time warping analysis, parallel independent component analysis and weighted gene co-expression network analysis to identify activated gene sets and networks. Finally, we tested and compared these sets for enrichment of risk genes for neuropsychiatric disorders. We confirm a significant overlap of genes implicated in ASD with FXS, ID and SCZ. However, counterintuitive to this observation, we report that risk genes affect pathways specific for each disorder during early neurodevelopment. Genes implicated in ASD, ID, FXS and SCZ were enriched among the positive regulators, but only ID-implicated genes were also negative regulators of neuronal differentiation. ASD and ID genes were involved in dendritic branching modules, but only ASD risk genes were implicated in histone modification or axonal guidance. Only ID genes were over-represented among cell cycle modules. We conclude that the underlying signatures are disorder-specific and that the shared genetic architecture results in overlaps across disorders such as ID in ASD. Thus, adding developmental network context to genetic analyses will aid differentiating the pathophysiology

  17. Horizontal Gene Transfers from Bacteria to Entamoeba Complex: A Strategy for Dating Events along Species Divergence

    PubMed Central

    Romero, Miguel; Ximenez, Cecilia

    2016-01-01

    Horizontal gene transfer has proved to be relevant in eukaryotic evolution, as it has been found more often than expected and related to adaptation to certain niches. A relatively large list of laterally transferred genes has been proposed and evaluated for the parasite Entamoeba histolytica. The goals of this work were to elucidate the importance of lateral gene transfer along the evolutionary history of some members of the genus Entamoeba, through identifying donor groups and estimating the divergence time of some of these events. In order to estimate the divergence time of some of the horizontal gene transfer events, the dating of some Entamoeba species was necessary, following an indirect dating strategy based on the fossil record of plausible hosts. The divergence between E. histolytica and E. nuttallii probably occurred 5.93 million years ago (Mya); this lineage diverged from E. dispar 9.97 Mya, while the ancestor of the latter separated from E. invadens 68.18 Mya. We estimated times for 22 transferences; the most recent occurred 31.45 Mya and the oldest 253.59 Mya. Indeed, the acquisition of genes through lateral transfer may have triggered a period of adaptive radiation, thus playing a major role in the evolution of the Entamoeba genus. PMID:27239333

  18. Large-scale functional RNAi screen in C. elegans identifies genes that regulate the dysfunction of mutant polyglutamine neurons

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background A central goal in Huntington's disease (HD) research is to identify and prioritize candidate targets for neuroprotective intervention, which requires genome-scale information on the modifiers of early-stage neuron injury in HD. Results Here, we performed a large-scale RNA interference screen in C. elegans strains that express N-terminal huntingtin (htt) in touch receptor neurons. These neurons control the response to light touch. Their function is strongly impaired by expanded polyglutamines (128Q) as shown by the nearly complete loss of touch response in adult animals, providing an in vivo model in which to manipulate the early phases of expanded-polyQ neurotoxicity. In total, 6034 genes were examined, revealing 662 gene inactivations that either reduce or aggravate defective touch response in 128Q animals. Several genes were previously implicated in HD or neurodegenerative disease, suggesting that this screen has effectively identified candidate targets for HD. Network-based analysis emphasized a subset of high-confidence modifier genes in pathways of interest in HD including metabolic, neurodevelopmental and pro-survival pathways. Finally, 49 modifiers of 128Q-neuron dysfunction that are dysregulated in the striatum of either R/2 or CHL2 HD mice, or both, were identified. Conclusions Collectively, these results highlight the relevance to HD pathogenesis, providing novel information on the potential therapeutic targets for neuroprotection in HD. PMID:22413862

  19. Cre Recombinase Gene Transfer In Vitro and Detection of loxP-Dependent Recombination.

    PubMed

    Ohtsubo, Kazuaki; Marth, Jamey D

    2007-07-01

    INTRODUCTIONAltering the genome of intact cells and organisms by site-specific DNA recombination has become an important gene-transfer methodology. The inclusion of exogenous recombinase target sequences within transferred DNA segments allows subsequent modifications to previously altered genomic structure that increase the utility of gene transfer and enhance experimental design. In this protocol, correctly targeted mouse embryonic stem (ES) cell clones bearing the F[tkneo] allele (containing several loxP sites) are subjected to in vitro Cre gene transfer to generate ES cell subclones bearing either Type 1 (Δ) or Type 2 (F) alleles. Type 2 ES cells are used to generate chimeric mice that are then crossed to germ-line Cre-expressing mice, such as ZP3-Cre transgenic mates. The additional time needed to breed the mice (~2-3 mo) is typically less troublesome than the cost and effort of maintaining multiple clone-derived lines of mice.

  20. Regulation of human GDNF gene expression in nigral dopaminergic neurons using a new doxycycline-regulated NTS-polyplex nanoparticle system.

    PubMed

    Espadas-Alvarez, Armando J; Bannon, Michael J; Orozco-Barrios, Carlos E; Escobedo-Sanchez, Lourdes; Ayala-Davila, Jose; Reyes-Corona, David; Soto-Rodriguez, Guadalupe; Escamilla-Rivera, Vicente; De Vizcaya-Ruiz, Andrea; Eugenia Gutierrez-Castillo, M; Padilla-Viveros, America; Martinez-Fong, Daniel

    2017-02-17

    The human glial-cell derived neurotrophic factor (hGDNF) gene transfer by neurotensin (NTS)-polyplex nanoparticles functionally restores the dopamine nigrostriatal system in experimental Parkinson's disease models. However, high levels of sustained expression of GDNF eventually can cause harmful effects. Herein, we report an improved NTS-polyplex nanoparticle system that enables regulation of hGDNF expression within dopaminergic neurons. We constructed NTS-polyplex nanoparticles containing a single bifunctional plasmid that codes for the reverse tetracycline-controlled transactivator advanced (rtTA-Adv) under the control of NBRE3x promoter, and for hGDNF under the control of tetracycline-response element (TRE). Another bifunctional plasmid contained the enhanced green fluorescent protein (GFP) gene. Transient transfection experiments in N1E-115-Nurr1 cells showed that doxycycline (100 ng/mL) activates hGDNF and GFP expression. Doxycycline (5 mg/kg, i.p.) administration in rats activated hGDNF expression only in transfected dopaminergic neurons, whereas doxycycline withdrawal silenced transgene expression. Our results offer a specific doxycycline-regulated system suitable for nanomedicine-based treatment of Parkinson's disease.

  1. Global gene expression shift during the transition from early neural development to late neuronal differentiation in Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Cantera, Rafael; Ferreiro, María José; Aransay, Ana María; Barrio, Rosa

    2014-01-01

    Regulation of transcription is one of the mechanisms involved in animal development, directing changes in patterning and cell fate specification. Large temporal data series, based on microarrays across the life cycle of the fly Drosophila melanogaster, revealed the existence of groups of genes which expression increases or decreases temporally correlated during the life cycle. These groups of genes are enriched in different biological functions. Here, instead of searching for temporal coincidence in gene expression using the entire genome expression data, we searched for temporal coincidence in gene expression only within predefined catalogues of functionally related genes and investigated whether a catalogue's expression profile can be used to generate larger catalogues, enriched in genes necessary for the same function. We analyzed the expression profiles from genes already associated with early neurodevelopment and late neurodifferentiation, at embryonic stages 16 and 17 of Drosophila life cycle. We hypothesized that during this interval we would find global downregulation of genes important for early neuronal development together with global upregulation of genes necessary for the final differentiation of neurons. Our results were consistent with this hypothesis. We then investigated if the expression profile of gene catalogues representing particular processes of neural development matched the temporal sequence along which these processes occur. The profiles of genes involved in patterning, neurogenesis, axogenesis or synaptic transmission matched the prediction, with largest transcript values at the time when the corresponding biological process takes place in the embryo. Furthermore, we obtained catalogues enriched in genes involved in temporally matching functions by performing a genome-wide systematic search for genes with their highest expression levels at the corresponding embryonic intervals. These findings imply the use of gene expression data in

  2. Development of an Autologous Macrophage-based Adoptive Gene Transfer Strategy to Treat Posttraumatic Osteoarthritis (PTOA) and Osteoarithritis (OA)

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2016-05-01

    AWARD NUMBER: W81XWH-13-1-0228 TITLE: Development of an Autologous Macrophage-based Adoptive Gene Transfer Strategy to Treat Posttraumatic...Final 3. DATES COVERED 1 Sep 2013 - 28 Feb 2016 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE Development of an Autologous Macrophage-based Adoptive Gene Transfer Strategy to...autologous macrophage-based adoptive gene transfer strategy can effectively deliver and confine expression of an anti-catabolic gene (IL-1ra or IL-1β

  3. Linear topology confers in vivo gene transfer activity to polyethylenimines.

    PubMed

    Brissault, B; Leborgne, C; Guis, C; Danos, O; Cheradame, H; Kichler, A

    2006-01-01

    Although polyethylenimines (PEIs) are frequently used transfection agents, it is still unclear which of their properties are required for efficient gene delivery. This is even more striking when working in vivo since some PEIs are able to generate significant gene expression, whereas others are not. To facilitate a rational development of compounds with improved transfection activities, studies aimed at identifying the properties involved in the transfection process seem indispensable. In the present work, we investigated how transfection with linear PEI of 22 kDa allows for high reporter gene expression in lungs after intravenous injection, whereas the branched PEI of 25 kDa does not. To this end, we synthesized L-PEI derivatives that are intermediates between linear and branched PEIs. Our results show that the topology plays a crucial role in obtaining in vivo reporter gene expression, whereas the content of primary, secondary, and tertiary amines is only of minor importance.

  4. Horizontal Gene Transfer and the Evolution of Bacterial and Archaeal Population Structure

    PubMed Central

    Alm, Eric J.; Hanage, William P.

    2013-01-01

    Many bacterial and archaeal lineages have a history of extensive and ongoing horizontal gene transfer and loss, as evidenced by the large differences in genome content even among otherwise closely related isolates. How ecologically cohesive populations might evolve and be maintained under such conditions of rapid gene turnover has remained controversial. Here we synthesize recent literature demonstrating the importance of habitat and niche in structuring horizontal gene transfer. This leads to a model of ecological speciation via gradual genetic isolation triggered by differential habitat association of nascent populations. Further, we hypothesize that subpopulations can evolve through local gene exchange networks by tapping into a gene pool that is adaptive towards local, continuously changing organismic interactions and is, to a large degree, responsible for the observed rapid gene turnover. Overall, these insights help explain how bacteria and archaea form populations that display both ecological cohesion and high genomic diversity. PMID:23332119

  5. Targeted gene transfer into rat facial muscles by nanosecond pulsed laser-induced stress waves.

    PubMed

    Kurita, Akihiro; Matsunobu, Takeshi; Satoh, Yasushi; Ando, Takahiro; Sato, Shunichi; Obara, Minoru; Shiotani, Akihiro

    2011-09-01

    We investigate the feasibility of using nanosecond pulsed laser-induced stress waves (LISWs) for gene transfer into rat facial muscles. LISWs are generated by irradiating a black natural rubber disk placed on the target tissue with nanosecond pulsed laser light from the second harmonics (532 nm) of a Q-switched Nd:YAG laser, which is widely used in head and neck surgery and proven to be safe. After injection of plasmid deoxyribose nucleic acid (DNA) coding for Lac Z into rat facial muscles, pulsed laser is used to irradiate the laser target on the skin surface without incision or exposure of muscles. Lac Z expression is detected by X-gal staining of excised rat facial skin and muscles. Strong Lac Z expression is observed seven days after gene transfer, and sustained for up to 14 days. Gene transfer is achieved in facial muscles several millimeters deep from the surface. Gene expression is localized to the tissue exposed to LISWs. No tissue damage from LISWs is observed. LISW is a promising nonviral target gene transfer method because of its high spatial controllability, easy applicability, and minimal invasiveness. Gene transfer using LISW to produce therapeutic proteins such as growth factors could be used to treat nerve injury and paralysis.

  6. Targeted gene transfer into rat facial muscles by nanosecond pulsed laser-induced stress waves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kurita, Akihiro; Matsunobu, Takeshi; Satoh, Yasushi; Ando, Takahiro; Sato, Shunichi; Obara, Minoru; Shiotani, Akihiro

    2011-09-01

    We investigate the feasibility of using nanosecond pulsed laser-induced stress waves (LISWs) for gene transfer into rat facial muscles. LISWs are generated by irradiating a black natural rubber disk placed on the target tissue with nanosecond pulsed laser light from the second harmonics (532 nm) of a Q-switched Nd:YAG laser, which is widely used in head and neck surgery and proven to be safe. After injection of plasmid deoxyribose nucleic acid (DNA) coding for Lac Z into rat facial muscles, pulsed laser is used to irradiate the laser target on the skin surface without incision or exposure of muscles. Lac Z expression is detected by X-gal staining of excised rat facial skin and muscles. Strong Lac Z expression is observed seven days after gene transfer, and sustained for up to 14 days. Gene transfer is achieved in facial muscles several millimeters deep from the surface. Gene expression is localized to the tissue exposed to LISWs. No tissue damage from LISWs is observed. LISW is a promising nonviral target gene transfer method because of its high spatial controllability, easy applicability, and minimal invasiveness. Gene transfer using LISW to produce therapeutic proteins such as growth factors could be used to treat nerve injury and paralysis.

  7. Complexity of genetic sequences modified by horizontal gene transfer and degraded-DNA uptake

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tremberger, George; Dehipawala, S.; Nguyen, A.; Cheung, E.; Sullivan, R.; Holden, T.; Lieberman, D.; Cheung, T.

    2015-09-01

    Horizontal gene transfer has been a major vehicle for efficient transfer of genetic materials among living species and could be one of the sources for noncoding DNA incorporation into a genome. Our previous study of lnc- RNA sequence complexity in terms of fractal dimension and information entropy shows a tight regulation among the studied genes in numerous diseases. The role of sequence complexity in horizontal transferred genes was investigated with Mealybug in symbiotic relation with a 139K genome microbe and Deinococcus radiodurans as examples. The fractal dimension and entropy showed correlation R-sq of 0.82 (N = 6) for the studied Deinococcus radiodurans sequences. For comparison the Deinococcus radiodurans oxidative stress tolerant catalase and superoxide dismutase genes under extracellular dGMP growth condition showed R-sq ~ 0.42 (N = 6); and the studied arsenate reductase horizontal transferred genes for toxicity survival in several microorganisms showed no correlation. Simulation results showed that R-sq < 0.4 would be improbable at less than one percent chance, suggestive of additional selection pressure when compared to the R-sq ~ 0.29 (N = 21) in the studied transferred genes in Mealybug. The mild correlation of R-sq ~ 0.5 for fractal dimension versus transcription level in the studied Deinococcus radiodurans sequences upon extracellular dGMP growth condition would suggest that lower fractal dimension with less electron density fluctuation favors higher transcription level.

  8. Gene transfers shaped the evolution of de novo NAD+ biosynthesis in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Ternes, Chad M; Schönknecht, Gerald

    2014-09-01

    NAD(+) is an essential molecule for life, present in each living cell. It can function as an electron carrier or cofactor in redox biochemistry and energetics, and serves as substrate to generate the secondary messenger cyclic ADP ribose and nicotinic acid adenine dinucleotide phosphate. Although de novo NAD(+) biosynthesis is essential, different metabolic pathways exist in different eukaryotic clades. The kynurenine pathway starting with tryptophan was most likely present in the last common ancestor of all eukaryotes, and is active in fungi and animals. The aspartate pathway, detected in most photosynthetic eukaryotes, was probably acquired from the cyanobacterial endosymbiont that gave rise to chloroplasts. An evolutionary analysis of enzymes catalyzing de novo NAD(+) biosynthesis resulted in evolutionary trees incongruent with established organismal phylogeny, indicating numerous gene transfers. Endosymbiotic gene transfers probably introduced the aspartate pathway into eukaryotes and may have distributed it among different photosynthetic clades. In addition, several horizontal gene transfers substituted eukaryotic genes with bacterial orthologs. Although horizontal gene transfer is accepted as a key mechanism in prokaryotic evolution, it is supposed to be rare in eukaryotic evolution. The essential metabolic pathway of de novo NAD(+) biosynthesis in eukaryotes was shaped by numerous gene transfers.

  9. The agricultural antibiotic carbadox induces phage-mediated gene transfer in Salmonella

    PubMed Central

    Bearson, Bradley L.; Allen, Heather K.; Brunelle, Brian W.; Lee, In Soo; Casjens, Sherwood R.; Stanton, Thaddeus B.

    2013-01-01

    Antibiotics are used for disease therapeutic or preventative effects in humans and animals, as well as for enhanced feed conversion efficiency in livestock. Antibiotics can also cause undesirable effects in microbial populations, including selection for antibiotic resistance, enhanced pathogen invasion, and stimulation of horizontal gene transfer. Carbadox is a veterinary antibiotic used in the US during the starter phase of swine production for improved feed efficiency and control of swine dysentery and bacterial swine enteritis. Carbadox has been shown in vitro to induce phage-encoded Shiga toxin in Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) and a phage-like element transferring antibiotic resistance genes in Brachyspira hyodysenteriae, but the effect of carbadox on prophages in other bacteria is unknown. This study examined carbadox exposure on prophage induction and genetic transfer in Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium, a human foodborne pathogen that frequently colonizes swine without causing disease. S. Typhimurium LT2 exposed to carbadox induced prophage production, resulting in bacterial cell lysis and release of virions that were visible by electron microscopy. Carbadox induction of phage-mediated gene transfer was confirmed by monitoring the transduction of a sodCIII::neo cassette in the Fels-1 prophage from LT2 to a recipient Salmonella strain. Furthermore, carbadox frequently induced generalized transducing phages in multidrug-resistant phage type DT104 and DT120 isolates, resulting in the transfer of chromosomal and plasmid DNA that included antibiotic resistance genes. Our research indicates that exposure of Salmonella to carbadox induces prophages that can transfer virulence and antibiotic resistance genes to susceptible bacterial hosts. Carbadox-induced, phage-mediated gene transfer could serve as a contributing factor in bacterial evolution during animal production, with prophages being a reservoir for bacterial fitness genes in the

  10. Horizontal Gene Transfer of Phytochelatin Synthases from Bacteria to Extremophilic Green Algae.

    PubMed

    Olsson, Sanna; Penacho, Vanessa; Puente-Sánchez, Fernando; Díaz, Silvia; Gonzalez-Pastor, José Eduardo; Aguilera, Angeles

    2017-01-01

    Transcriptomic sequencing together with bioinformatic analyses and an automated annotation process led us to identify novel phytochelatin synthase (PCS) genes from two extremophilic green algae (Chlamydomonas acidophila and Dunaliella acidophila). These genes are of intermediate length compared to known PCS genes from eukaryotes and PCS-like genes from prokaryotes. A detailed phylogenetic analysis gives new insight into the complicated evolutionary history of PCS genes and provides evidence for multiple horizontal gene transfer events from bacteria to eukaryotes within the gene family. A separate subgroup containing PCS-like genes within the PCS