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Sample records for pheromone gene clusters

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

  3. Putative pathway of sex pheromone biosynthesis and degradation by expression patterns of genes identified from female pheromone gland and adult antenna of Sesamia inferens (Walker).

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ya-Nan; Xia, Yi-Han; Zhu, Jia-Yao; Li, Sheng-Yun; Dong, Shuang-Lin

    2014-05-01

    The general pathway of biosynthesis and degradation for Type-I sex pheromones in moths is well established, but some genes involved in this pathway remain to be characterized. The purple stem borer, Sesamia inferens, employs a pheromone blend containing components with three different terminal functional groups (Z11-16:OAc, Z11-16:OH, and Z11-16:Ald) of Type-I sex pheromones. Thus, it provides a good model to study the diversity of genes involved in pheromone biosynthesis and degradation pathways. By analyzing previously obtained transcriptomic data of the sex pheromone glands and antennae, we identified 73 novel genes that are possibly related to pheromone biosynthesis (46 genes) or degradation (27 genes). Gene expression patterns and phylogenetic analysis revealed that one desaturase (SinfDes4), one fatty acid reductase (SinfFAR2), and one fatty acid xtransport protein (SinfFATP1) genes were predominantly expressed in pheromone glands, and clustered with genes involved in pheromone synthesis in other moth species. Ten genes including five carboxylesterases (SinfCXE10, 13, 14, 18, and 20), three aldehyde oxidases (SinfAOX1, 2 and 3), and two alcohol dehydrogenases (SinfAD1 and 3) were expressed specifically or predominantly in antennae, and could be candidate genes involved in pheromone degradation. SinfAD1 and 3 are the first reported alcohol dehydrogenase genes with antennae-biased expression. Based on these results we propose a pathway involving these potential enzyme-encoding gene candidates in sex pheromone biosynthesis and degradation in S. inferens. This study provides robust background information for further elucidation of the genetic basis of sex pheromone biosynthesis and degradation, and ultimately provides potential targets to disrupt sexual communication in S. inferens for control purposes.

  4. Basidiomycete Mating Type Genes and Pheromone Signaling▿

    PubMed Central

    Raudaskoski, Marjatta; Kothe, Erika

    2010-01-01

    The genome sequences of the basidiomycete Agaricomycetes species Coprinopsis cinerea, Laccaria bicolor, Schizophyllum commune, Phanerochaete chrysosporium, and Postia placenta, as well as of Cryptococcus neoformans and Ustilago maydis, are now publicly available. Out of these fungi, C. cinerea, S. commune, and U. maydis, together with the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, have been investigated for years genetically and molecularly for signaling in sexual reproduction. The comparison of the structure and organization of mating type genes in fungal genomes reveals an amazing conservation of genes regulating the sexual reproduction throughout the fungal kingdom. In agaricomycetes, two mating type loci, A, coding for homeodomain type transcription factors, and B, encoding a pheromone/receptor system, regulate the four typical mating interactions of tetrapolar species. Evidence for both A and B mating type genes can also be identified in basidiomycetes with bipolar systems, where only two mating interactions are seen. In some of these fungi, the B locus has lost its self/nonself discrimination ability and thus its specificity while retaining the other regulatory functions in development. In silico analyses now also permit the identification of putative components of the pheromone-dependent signaling pathways. Induction of these signaling cascades leads to development of dikaryotic mycelia, fruiting body formation, and meiotic spore production. In pheromone-dependent signaling, the role of heterotrimeric G proteins, components of a mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) cascade, and cyclic AMP-dependent pathways can now be defined. Additionally, the pheromone-dependent signaling through monomeric, small GTPases potentially involved in creating the polarized cytoskeleton for reciprocal nuclear exchange and migration during mating is predicted. PMID:20190072

  5. Key biosynthetic gene subfamily recruited for pheromone production prior to the extensive radiation of Lepidoptera

    PubMed Central

    2008-01-01

    Background Moths have evolved highly successful mating systems, relying on species-specific mixtures of sex pheromone components for long-distance mate communication. Acyl-CoA desaturases are key enzymes in the biosynthesis of these compounds and to a large extent they account for the great diversity of pheromone structures in Lepidoptera. A novel desaturase gene subfamily that displays Δ11 catalytic activities has been highlighted to account for most of the unique pheromone signatures of the taxonomically advanced ditrysian species. To assess the mechanisms driving pheromone evolution, information is needed about the signalling machinery of primitive moths. The currant shoot borer, Lampronia capitella, is the sole reported primitive non-ditrysian moth known to use unsaturated fatty-acid derivatives as sex-pheromone. By combining biochemical and molecular approaches we elucidated the biosynthesis paths of its main pheromone component, the (Z,Z)-9,11-tetradecadien-1-ol and bring new insights into the time point of the recruitment of the key Δ11-desaturase gene subfamily in moth pheromone biosynthesis. Results The reconstructed evolutionary tree of desaturases evidenced two ditrysian-specific lineages (the Δ11 and Δ9 (18C>16C)) to have orthologs in the primitive moth L. capitella despite being absent in Diptera and other insect genomes. Four acyl-CoA desaturase cDNAs were isolated from the pheromone gland, three of which are related to Δ9-desaturases whereas the fourth cDNA clusters with Δ11-desaturases. We demonstrated that this transcript (Lca-KPVQ) exclusively accounts for both steps of desaturation involved in pheromone biosynthesis. This enzyme possesses a Z11-desaturase activity that allows transforming the palmitate precursor (C16:0) into (Z)-11-hexadecenoic acid and the (Z)-9-tetradecenoic acid into the conjugated intermediate (Z,Z)-9,11-tetradecadienoic acid. Conclusion The involvement of a single Z11-desaturase in pheromone biosynthesis of a non

  6. The mating-type locus B alpha 1 of Schizophyllum commune contains a pheromone receptor gene and putative pheromone genes.

    PubMed Central

    Wendland, J; Vaillancourt, L J; Hegner, J; Lengeler, K B; Laddison, K J; Specht, C A; Raper, C A; Kothe, E

    1995-01-01

    Analysis of the multispecific B alpha mating-type locus of Schizophyllum commune provided evidence that pheromones and pheromone receptors govern recognition of self versus non-self and sexual development in this homobasidiomycetous fungus. Four subclones of an 8.2 kb genomic fragment carrying B alpha 1 specificity induced B-regulated sexual morphogenesis when introduced into a strain with one of the eight compatible B alpha specificities that are known to exist in nature. One of these clones, which activated all other B alpha specificities, contains a gene termed bar1. The predicted protein product of bar1, as well as that of bar2, a homologous gene isolated from a B alpha 2 strain, has significant homology to known fungal pheromone receptor proteins in the rhodopsin-like superfamily of G protein-linked receptors. The other three active B alpha 1 clones were subcloned further to identify the minimal active element in each clone. Every active subclone contains a putative pheromone gene ending in a signal for possible isoprenylation. A message of approximately 600 bp was observed for one of these genes, bap1(1). This paper presents the first evidence for a system of multiple pheromones and pheromone receptors as a basis for multispecific mating types in a fungus. Images PMID:7489716

  7. Large number of putative chemoreception and pheromone biosynthesis genes revealed by analyzing transcriptome from ovipositor-pheromone glands of Chilo suppressalis.

    PubMed

    Xia, Yi-Han; Zhang, Ya-Nan; Hou, Xiao-Qing; Li, Fei; Dong, Shuang-Lin

    2015-01-20

    The chemoreception role of moth ovipositor has long been suggested, but its molecular mechanism is mostly unknown. By transcriptomic analysis of the female ovipositor-pheromone glands (OV-PG) of Chilo suppressalis, we obtained 31 putative chemoreception genes (9 OBPs, 10 CSPs, 2 ORs, 1 SNMP, 8 CXEs and 1 AOX), in addition to 32 genes related to sex pheromone biosynthesis (1 FAS, 6 Dess, 10 FARs, 2 ACOs, 1 ACC, 4 FATPs, 3 ACBPs and 5 ELOs). Tissue expression profiles further revealed that CsupCSP2 and CsupCSP10 were OV-PG biased, while most chemoreception genes were highly and preferably expressed in antennae. This suggests that OV-PG employs mostly the same chemoreception proteins as in antennae, although the physiological roles of these proteins might be different in OV-PG. Of the 32 pheromone biosynthesis related genes, CsupDes4, CsupDes5 and CsupFAR2 are strongly OV-PG biased, and clustered with functionally validated genes from other moths, strongly indicating their involvement in specific step of the pheromone biosynthesis. Our study for the first time identified a large number of putative chemoreception genes, and provided an important basis for exploring the chemoreception mechanisms of OV-PG in C. suppressalis, as well as other moth species.

  8. Parallel evolution of domesticated Caenorhabditis species targets pheromone receptor genes.

    PubMed

    McGrath, Patrick T; Xu, Yifan; Ailion, Michael; Garrison, Jennifer L; Butcher, Rebecca A; Bargmann, Cornelia I

    2011-08-17

    Evolution can follow predictable genetic trajectories, indicating that discrete environmental shifts can select for reproducible genetic changes. Conspecific individuals are an important feature of an animal's environment, and a potential source of selective pressures. Here we show that adaptation of two Caenorhabditis species to growth at high density, a feature common to domestic environments, occurs by reproducible genetic changes to pheromone receptor genes. Chemical communication through pheromones that accumulate during high-density growth causes young nematode larvae to enter the long-lived but non-reproductive dauer stage. Two strains of Caenorhabditis elegans grown at high density have independently acquired multigenic resistance to pheromone-induced dauer formation. In each strain, resistance to the pheromone ascaroside C3 results from a deletion that disrupts the adjacent chemoreceptor genes serpentine receptor class g (srg)-36 and -37. Through misexpression experiments, we show that these genes encode redundant G-protein-coupled receptors for ascaroside C3. Multigenic resistance to dauer formation has also arisen in high-density cultures of a different nematode species, Caenorhabditis briggsae, resulting in part from deletion of an srg gene paralogous to srg-36 and srg-37. These results demonstrate rapid remodelling of the chemoreceptor repertoire as an adaptation to specific environments, and indicate that parallel changes to a common genetic substrate can affect life-history traits across species.

  9. Two pheromone precursor genes are transcriptionally expressed in the homothallic ascomycete Sordaria macrospora.

    PubMed

    Pöggeler, S

    2000-06-01

    In order to analyze the involvement of pheromones in cell recognition and mating in a homothallic fungus, two putative pheromone precursor genes, named ppg1 and ppg2, were isolated from a genomic library of Sordaria macrospora. The ppg1 gene is predicted to encode a precursor pheromone that is processed by a Kex2-like protease to yield a pheromone that is structurally similar to the alpha-factor of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The ppg2 gene encodes a 24-amino-acid polypeptide that contains a putative farnesylated and carboxy methylated C-terminal cysteine residue. The sequences of the predicted pheromones display strong structural similarity to those encoded by putative pheromones of heterothallic filamentous ascomycetes. Both genes are expressed during the life cycle of S. macrospora. This is the first description of pheromone precursor genes encoded by a homothallic fungus. Southern-hybridization experiments indicated that ppg1 and ppg2 homologues are also present in other homothallic ascomycetes.

  10. Isolation and characterization of the Cryptococcus neoformans MATa pheromone gene.

    PubMed Central

    McClelland, Carol M; Fu, Jianmin; Woodlee, Gay L; Seymour, Tara S; Wickes, Brian L

    2002-01-01

    Cryptococcus neoformans is a heterothallic basidiomycete with two mating types, MATa and MATalpha. The mating pathway of this fungus has a number of conserved genes, including a MATalpha-specific pheromone (MFalpha1). A modified differential display strategy was used to identify a gene encoding the MATa pheromone. The gene, designated MFa1, is 42 amino acids in length and contains a conserved farnesylation motif. MFa1 is present in three linked copies that span a 20-kb fragment of MATa-specific DNA and maps to the MAT-containing chromosome. Transformation studies showed that MFa1 induced filament formation only in MATalpha cells, demonstrating that MFa1 is functionally conserved. Sequence analysis of the predicted Mfa1 and Mfalpha1 proteins revealed that, in contrast to other fungi such as Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the C. neoformans pheromone genes are structurally and functionally conserved. However, unlike the MFalpha1 gene, which is found in MATalpha strains of both varieties of C. neoformans, MFa1 is specific for the neoformans variety of C. neoformans. PMID:11901112

  11. Pheromone-regulated genes required for yeast mating differentiation.

    PubMed

    Erdman, S; Lin, L; Malczynski, M; Snyder, M

    1998-02-09

    Yeast cells mate by an inducible pathway that involves agglutination, mating projection formation, cell fusion, and nuclear fusion. To obtain insight into the mating differentiation of Saccharomyces cerevisiae, we carried out a large-scale transposon tagging screen to identify genes whose expression is regulated by mating pheromone. 91,200 transformants containing random lacZ insertions were screened for beta-galactosidase (beta-gal) expression in the presence and absence of alpha factor, and 189 strains containing pheromone-regulated lacZ insertions were identified. Transposon insertion alleles corresponding to 20 genes that are novel or had not previously been known to be pheromone regulated were examined for effects on the mating process. Mutations in four novel genes, FIG1, FIG2, KAR5/ FIG3, and FIG4 were found to cause mating defects. Three of the proteins encoded by these genes, Fig1p, Fig2p, and Fig4p, are dispensible for cell polarization in uniform concentrations of mating pheromone, but are required for normal cell polarization in mating mixtures, conditions that involve cell-cell communication. Fig1p and Fig2p are also important for cell fusion and conjugation bridge shape, respectively. The fourth protein, Kar5p/Fig3p, is required for nuclear fusion. Fig1p and Fig2p are likely to act at the cell surface as Fig1:: beta-gal and Fig2::beta-gal fusion proteins localize to the periphery of mating cells. Fig4p is a member of a family of eukaryotic proteins that contain a domain homologous to the yeast Sac1p. Our results indicate that a variety of novel genes are expressed specifically during mating differentiation to mediate proper cell morphogenesis, cell fusion, and other steps of the mating process.

  12. Pheromonal regulation and sequence of the Saccharomyces cerevisiae SST2 gene: a model for desensitization to pheromone.

    PubMed Central

    Dietzel, C; Kurjan, J

    1987-01-01

    Strains of both haploid mating types containing sst2 mutations are altered in response to pheromone; MATa sst2 cells are supersensitive to alpha-factor, and MAT alpha sst2 cells are supersensitive to a-factor. This phenotype suggests that SST2 encodes a component of the pheromone response pathway that is common to both mating types. We have cloned the SST2 gene by isolation of multicopy plasmids that complement the sst2-1 mutation. One such plasmid contained a 4.5-kilobase HindIII fragment that was able to complement the sst2-1 mutation in high or low copy number, integrated at the SST2 locus, and resulted in an sst2 phenotype when disrupted, indicating that this fragment contained the SST2 gene. We identified the functional region of the complementing DNA fragment by transposon mutagenesis. Sequencing of this fragment identified an open reading frame encoding 698 amino acids at a position that correlated well with the functional region. Expression of an Sst2-beta-galactosidase fusion was haploid specific and induced by exposure to pheromone. We discuss a model in which induction of the SST2 product results in inhibition of a component of the pheromone response pathway, resulting in desensitization to pheromone. PMID:2830483

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

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background One of the challenges in insect chemical ecology is to understand how insect pheromones are synthesised, detected and degraded. Genome wide survey by comparative sequencing and gene specific expression profiling provide rich resources for this challenge. A. ipsilon is a destructive pest of many crops and further characterization of the genes involved in pheromone biosynthesis and transport could offer potential targets for disruption of their chemical communication and for crop protection. Results Here we report 454 next-generation sequencing of the A. ipsilon pheromone gland transcriptome, identification and expression profiling of genes putatively involved in pheromone production, transport and degradation. A total of 23473 unigenes were obtained from the transcriptome analysis, 86% of which were A. ipsilon specific. 42 transcripts encoded enzymes putatively involved in pheromone biosynthesis, of which 15 were specifically, or mainly, expressed in the pheromone glands at 5 to 120-fold higher levels than in the body. Two transcripts encoding for a fatty acid synthase and a desaturase were highly abundant in the transcriptome and expressed more than 40-fold higher in the glands than in the body. The transcripts encoding for 2 acetyl-CoA carboxylases, 1 fatty acid synthase, 2 desaturases, 3 acyl-CoA reductases, 2 alcohol oxidases, 2 aldehyde reductases and 3 acetyltransferases were expressed at a significantly higher level in the pheromone glands than in the body. 17 esterase transcripts were not gland-specific and 7 of these were expressed highly in the antennae. Seven transcripts encoding odorant binding proteins (OBPs) and 8 encoding chemosensory proteins (CSPs) were identified. Two CSP transcripts (AipsCSP2, AipsCSP8) were highly abundant in the pheromone gland transcriptome and this was confirmed by qRT-PCR. One OBP (AipsOBP6) were pheromone gland-enriched and three OBPs (AipsOBP1, AipsOBP2 and AipsOBP4) were antennal-enriched. Based on these studies

  14. Synthetic pheromones and plant volatiles alter the expression of chemosensory genes in Spodoptera exigua

    PubMed Central

    Wan, Xinlong; Qian, Kai; Du, Yongjun

    2015-01-01

    Pheromone and plant odorants are important for insect mating, foraging food sources and oviposition. To understand the molecular mechanisms regulating pheromone and odorant signaling, we employed qRT-PCR to study the circadian rhythms of ABP, OBP, PBP, and OR gene expression in the beet armyworm, Spodoptera exigua and their responses after a pre-exposure to sex pheromone compounds or plant volatiles. The neuronal responses of male S. exigua to 20 chemical compounds were recorded at three specific time periods using the electroantennogram. The results showed a circadian rhythm in the expression profiles of some chemosensory genes in the antennae similar to their behavioral rhythm. The expression profiles of OR3, OR6, OR11, OR13, OR16, OR18, Orco, ABP2, OBP1, OBP7, and PBP1, and EAG responses to chemical compounds, as well as their circadian rhythm were significantly affected after exposure to synthetic sex pheromones and plant volatiles. These findings provide the first evidence that the gene expression of chemosensory genes and olfactory sensitivity to sex pheromones are affected by pre-exposing insects to pheromone compounds and plant volatiles. It helps to understand the molecular mechanisms underlying pheromone activity, and the application of sex pheromones and plant volatiles in mating disruption or mass trapping. PMID:26611815

  15. Discovery of a disused desaturase gene from the pheromone gland of the moth Ascotis selenaria, which secretes an epoxyalkenyl sex pheromone.

    PubMed

    Fujii, Takeshi; Suzuki, Masataka G; Katsuma, Susumu; Ito, Katsuhiko; Rong, Yu; Matsumoto, Shogo; Ando, Tetsu; Ishikawa, Yukio

    2013-11-29

    Female Ascotis selenaria (Geometridae) moths use 3,4-epoxy-(Z,Z)-6,9-nonadecadiene, which is synthesized from linolenic acid, as the main component of their sex pheromone. While the use of dietary linolenic or linoleic fatty acid derivatives as sex pheromone components has been observed in moth species belonging to a few families including Geometridae, the majority of moths use derivatives of a common saturated fatty acid, palmitic acid, as their sex pheromone components. We attempted to gain insight into the differentiation of pheromone biosynthetic pathways in geometrids by analyzing the desaturase genes expressed in the pheromone gland of A. selenaria. We demonstrated that a Δ11-desaturase-like gene (Asdesat1) was specifically expressed in the pheromone gland of A. selenaria in spite of the absence of a desaturation step in the pheromone biosynthetic pathway in this species. Further analysis revealed that the presumed transmembrane domains were degenerated in Asdesat1. Phylogenetic analysis demonstrated that Asdesat1 anciently diverged from the lineage of Δ11-desaturases, which are currently widely used in the biosynthesis of sex pheromones by moths. These results suggest that an ancestral Δ11-desaturase became dysfunctional in A. selenaria after a shift in pheromone biosynthetic pathways.

  16. How flies respond to honey bee pheromone: the role of the foraging gene on reproductive response to queen mandibular pheromone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Camiletti, Alison L.; Awde, David N.; Thompson, Graham J.

    2014-01-01

    In this study we test one central prediction from sociogenomic theory—that social and non-social taxa share common genetic toolkits that regulate reproduction in response to environmental cues. We exposed Drosophila females of rover ( for R) and sitter ( for s) genotypes to an ovary-suppressing pheromone derived from the honeybee Apis mellifera. Surprisingly, queen mandibular pheromone (QMP) affected several measures of fitness in flies, and in a manner comparable to the pheromone's normal effect on bee workers. QMP-treated sitter flies had smaller ovaries that contained fewer eggs than did untreated controls. QMP-treated rover flies, by contrast, showed a more variable pattern that only sometimes resulted in ovary inhibition, while a third strain of fly that contains a sitter mutant allele in a rover background ( for s2) showed no ovarian response to QMP. Taken together, our results suggest that distinctly non-social insects have some capacity to respond to social cues, but that this response varies with fly genotype. In general, the interspecific response is consistent with a conserved gene set affecting reproductive physiology. The differential response among strains in particular suggests that for is itself important for modulating the fly's pheromonal response.

  17. A novel screen for genes associated with pheromone-induced sterility

    PubMed Central

    Camiletti, Alison L.; Percival-Smith, Anthony; Croft, Justin R.; Thompson, Graham J.

    2016-01-01

    For honey bee and other social insect colonies the ‘queen substance’ regulates colony reproduction rendering workers functionally sterile. The evolution of worker reproductive altruism is explained by inclusive fitness theory, but little is known of the genes involved or how they regulate the phenotypic expression of altruism. We previously showed that application of honeybee queen pheromone to virgin fruit flies suppresses fecundity. Here we exploit this finding to identify genes associated with the perception of an ovary-inhibiting social pheromone. Mutational and RNAi approaches in Drosophila reveal that the olfactory co-factor Orco together with receptors Or49b, Or56a and Or98a are potentially involved in the perception of queen pheromone and the suppression of fecundity. One of these, Or98a, is known to mediate female fly mating behaviour, and its predicted ligand is structurally similar to a methyl component of the queen pheromone. Our novel approach to finding genes associated with pheromone-induced sterility implies conserved reproductive regulation between social and pre-social orders, and further helps to identify candidate orthologues from the pheromone-responsive pathway that may regulate honeybee worker sterility. PMID:27786267

  18. Coordinated gene expression for pheromone biosynthesis in the pine engraver beetle, Ips pini (Coleoptera: Scolytidae)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keeling, Christopher I.; Blomquist, Gary J.; Tittiger, Claus

    In several pine bark beetle species, phloem feeding induces aggregation pheromone production to coordinate a mass attack on the host tree. Male pine engraver beetles, Ips pini (Say) (Coleoptera: Scolytidae), produce the monoterpenoid pheromone component ipsdienol de novo via the mevalonate pathway in the anterior midgut upon feeding. To understand how pheromone production is regulated in this tissue, we used quantitative real-time PCR to examine feeding-induced changes in gene expression of seven mevalonate pathway genes: acetoacetyl-coenzyme A thiolase, 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl coenzyme A synthase, 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl coenzyme A reductase, mevalonate 5-diphosphate decarboxylase, isopentenyl-diphosphate isomerase, geranyl-diphosphate synthase (GPPS), and farnesyl-diphosphate synthase (FPPS). In males, expression of all these genes significantly increased upon feeding. In females, the expression of the early mevalonate pathway genes (up to and including the isomerase) increased significantly, but the expression of the later genes (GPPS and FPPS) was unaffected or decreased upon feeding. Thus, feeding coordinately regulates expression of the mevalonate pathway genes necessary for pheromone biosynthesis in male, but not female, midguts. Furthermore, basal mRNA levels were 5- to 41-fold more abundant in male midguts compared to female midguts. This is the first report of coordinated regulation of mevalonate pathway genes in an invertebrate model consistent with their sex-specific role in de novo pheromone biosynthesis.

  19. Genetic mapping of male pheromone response in the European corn borer identifies candidate genes regulating neurogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Dekker, Teun; Heckel, David G.

    2016-01-01

    The sexual pheromone communication system of moths is a model system for studies of the evolution of reproductive isolation. Females emit a blend of volatile components that males detect at a distance. Species differences in female pheromone composition and male response directly reinforce reproductive isolation in nature, because even slight variations in the species-specific pheromone blend are usually rejected by the male. The mechanisms by which a new pheromone signal–response system could evolve are enigmatic, because any deviation from the optimally attractive blend should be selected against. Here we investigate the genetic mechanisms enabling a switch in male response. We used a quantitative trait locus-mapping approach to identify the genetic basis of male response in the two pheromone races of the European corn borer, Ostrinia nubilalis. Male response to a 99:1 vs. a 3:97 ratio of the E and Z isomers of the female pheromone is governed by a single, sex-linked locus. We found that the chromosomal region most tightly linked to this locus contains genes involved in neurogenesis but, in accordance with an earlier study, does not contain the odorant receptors expressed in the male antenna that detect the pheromone. This finding implies that differences in the development of neuronal pathways conveying information from the antenna, not differences in pheromone detection by the odorant receptors, are primarily responsible for the behavioral response differences among the males in this system. Comparison with other moth species reveals a previously unexplored mechanism by which male pheromone response can change in evolution. PMID:27698145

  20. Staphylococcus aureus and Staphylococcus epidermidis peptide pheromones produced by the accessory gene regulator agr system.

    PubMed

    Otto, M

    2001-10-01

    The accessory gene regulator (agr) system of staphylococci regulates the expression of virulence factors in response to cell density. The extracellular signaling molecule encoded by this system is a thiolactone-containing pheromone peptide whose primary sequence varies among staphylococcal strains. A post-translational modification of the peptide is believed to be carried out by an enzyme with a novel function, AgrB. Staphylococcal pheromones show cross-inhibiting properties: Pheromones of self and pheromones of non-self induce and suppress the agr response, respectively, and have therefore been proposed as novel anti-staphylococcal drugs. As inhibition of agr leads to diminished expression of toxins, but to increased expression of colonization factors and biofilm formation, their therapeutic potential remains yet to be evaluated in depth.

  1. A reference gene set for sex pheromone biosynthesis and degradation genes from the diamondback moth, Plutella xylostella, based on genome and transcriptome digital gene expression analyses.

    PubMed

    He, Peng; Zhang, Yun-Fei; Hong, Duan-Yang; Wang, Jun; Wang, Xing-Liang; Zuo, Ling-Hua; Tang, Xian-Fu; Xu, Wei-Ming; He, Ming

    2017-03-01

    Female moths synthesize species-specific sex pheromone components and release them to attract male moths, which depend on precise sex pheromone chemosensory system to locate females. Two types of genes involved in the sex pheromone biosynthesis and degradation pathways play essential roles in this important moth behavior. To understand the function of genes in the sex pheromone pathway, this study investigated the genome-wide and digital gene expression of sex pheromone biosynthesis and degradation genes in various adult tissues in the diamondback moth (DBM), Plutella xylostella, which is a notorious vegetable pest worldwide. A massive transcriptome data (at least 39.04 Gb) was generated by sequencing 6 adult tissues including male antennae, female antennae, heads, legs, abdomen and female pheromone glands from DBM by using Illumina 4000 next-generation sequencing and mapping to a published DBM genome. Bioinformatics analysis yielded a total of 89,332 unigenes among which 87 transcripts were putatively related to seven gene families in the sex pheromone biosynthesis pathway. Among these, seven [two desaturases (DES), three fatty acyl-CoA reductases (FAR) one acetyltransferase (ACT) and one alcohol dehydrogenase (AD)] were mainly expressed in the pheromone glands with likely function in the three essential sex pheromone biosynthesis steps: desaturation, reduction, and esterification. We also identified 210 odorant-degradation related genes (including sex pheromone-degradation related genes) from seven major enzyme groups. Among these genes, 100 genes are new identified and two aldehyde oxidases (AOXs), one aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH), five carboxyl/cholinesterases (CCEs), five UDP-glycosyltransferases (UGTs), eight cytochrome P450 (CYP) and three glutathione S-transferases (GSTs) displayed more robust expression in the antennae, and thus are proposed to participate in the degradation of sex pheromone components and plant volatiles. To date, this is the most

  2. Ant colony clustering with fitness perception and pheromone diffusion for community detection in complex networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ji, Junzhong; Song, Xiangjing; Liu, Chunnian; Zhang, Xiuzhen

    2013-08-01

    Community structure detection in complex networks has been intensively investigated in recent years. In this paper, we propose an adaptive approach based on ant colony clustering to discover communities in a complex network. The focus of the method is the clustering process of an ant colony in a virtual grid, where each ant represents a node in the complex network. During the ant colony search, the method uses a new fitness function to percept local environment and employs a pheromone diffusion model as a global information feedback mechanism to realize information exchange among ants. A significant advantage of our method is that the locations in the grid environment and the connections of the complex network structure are simultaneously taken into account in ants moving. Experimental results on computer-generated and real-world networks show the capability of our method to successfully detect community structures.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    1987-01-01

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

  4. The water-borne protein signals (pheromones) of the Antarctic ciliated protozoan Euplotes nobilii: structure of the gene coding for the En-6 pheromone.

    PubMed

    La Terza, Antonietta; Dobri, Nicoleta; Alimenti, Claudio; Vallesi, Adriana; Luporini, Pierangelo

    2009-01-01

    The marine Antarctic ciliate, Euplotes nobilii, secretes a family of water-borne signal proteins, denoted as pheromones, which control vegetative proliferation and mating in the cell. Based on the knowledge of the amino acid sequences of a set of these pheromones isolated from the culture supernatant of wild-type strains, we designed probes to identify their encoding genes in the cell somatic nucleus (macronucleus). The full-length gene of the pheromone En-6 was determined and found to contain an open-reading frame specific for the synthesis of the En-6 cytoplasmic precursor (pre-pro-En-6), which requires 2 proteolytic cleavages to remove the signal peptide (pre) and the prosegment before secretion of the mature protein. In contrast to the sequence variability that distinguishes the secreted pheromones, the pre- and pro-sequences appear to be tightly conserved and useful for the construction of probes to clone every other E. nobilii pheromone gene. Potential intron sequences in the coding region of the En-6 gene imply the synthesis of more En-6 isoforms.

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

    PubMed

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

    2017-01-09

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2017-01-01

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

  7. Roles for receptors, pheromones, G proteins, and mating type genes during sexual reproduction in Neurospora crassa.

    PubMed

    Kim, Hyojeong; Wright, Sara J; Park, Gyungsoon; Ouyang, Shouqiang; Krystofova, Svetlana; Borkovich, Katherine A

    2012-04-01

    Here we characterize the relationship between the PRE-2 pheromone receptor and its ligand, CCG-4, and the general requirements for receptors, pheromones, G proteins, and mating type genes during fusion of opposite mating-type cells and sexual sporulation in the multicellular fungus Neurospora crassa. PRE-2 is highly expressed in mat a cells and is localized in male and female reproductive structures. Δpre-2 mat a females do not respond chemotropically to mat A males (conidia) or form mature fruiting bodies (perithecia) or meiotic progeny (ascospores). Strains with swapped identity due to heterologous expression of pre-2 or ccg-4 behave normally in crosses with opposite mating-type strains. Coexpression of pre-2 and ccg-4 in the mat A background leads to self-attraction and development of barren perithecia without ascospores. Further perithecial development is achieved by inactivation of Sad-1, a gene required for meiotic gene silencing. Findings from studies involving forced heterokaryons of opposite mating-type strains show that presence of one receptor and its compatible pheromone is necessary and sufficient for perithecial development and ascospore production. Taken together, the results demonstrate that although receptors and pheromones control sexual identity, the mating-type genes (mat A and mat a) must be in two different nuclei to allow meiosis and sexual sporulation to occur.

  8. Sexual isolation of male moths explained by a single pheromone response QTL containing four receptor genes.

    PubMed

    Gould, Fred; Estock, Marie; Hillier, N Kirk; Powell, Bekah; Groot, Astrid T; Ward, Catherine M; Emerson, Jennifer L; Schal, Coby; Vickers, Neil J

    2010-05-11

    Long distance sexual communication in moths has fascinated biologists because of the complex, precise female pheromone signals and the extreme sensitivity of males to specific pheromone molecules. Progress has been made in identifying some genes involved in female pheromone production and in male response. However, we have lacked information on the genetic changes involved in evolutionary diversification of these mate-finding mechanisms that is critical to understanding speciation in moths and other taxa. We used a combined quantitative trait locus (QTL) and candidate gene approach to determine the genetic architecture of sexual isolation in males of two congeneric moths, Heliothis subflexa and Heliothis virescens. We report behavioral and neurophysiological evidence that differential male responses to three female-produced chemicals (Z9-14:Ald, Z9-16:Ald, Z11-16:OAc) that maintain sexual isolation of these species are all controlled by a single QTL containing at least four odorant receptor genes. It is not surprising that pheromone receptor differences could control H. subflexa and H. virescens responses to Z9-16:Ald and Z9-14:Ald, respectively. However, central rather than peripheral level control over the positive and negative responses of H. subflexa and H. virescens to Z11-16:OAc had been expected. Tight linkage of these receptor genes indicates that mutations altering male response to complex blends could be maintained in linkage disequilibrium and could affect the speciation process. Other candidate genes such as those coding for pheromone binding proteins did not map to this QTL, but there was some genetic evidence of a QTL for response to Z11-16:OH associated with a sensory neuron membrane protein gene.

  9. Sexual isolation of male moths explained by a single pheromone response QTL containing four receptor genes

    PubMed Central

    Gould, Fred; Estock, Marie; Hillier, N. Kirk; Powell, Bekah; Groot, Astrid T.; Ward, Catherine M.; Emerson, Jennifer L.; Schal, Coby; Vickers, Neil J.

    2010-01-01

    Long distance sexual communication in moths has fascinated biologists because of the complex, precise female pheromone signals and the extreme sensitivity of males to specific pheromone molecules. Progress has been made in identifying some genes involved in female pheromone production and in male response. However, we have lacked information on the genetic changes involved in evolutionary diversification of these mate-finding mechanisms that is critical to understanding speciation in moths and other taxa. We used a combined quantitative trait locus (QTL) and candidate gene approach to determine the genetic architecture of sexual isolation in males of two congeneric moths, Heliothis subflexa and Heliothis virescens. We report behavioral and neurophysiological evidence that differential male responses to three female-produced chemicals (Z9-14:Ald, Z9-16:Ald, Z11-16:OAc) that maintain sexual isolation of these species are all controlled by a single QTL containing at least four odorant receptor genes. It is not surprising that pheromone receptor differences could control H. subflexa and H. virescens responses to Z9-16:Ald and Z9-14:Ald, respectively. However, central rather than peripheral level control over the positive and negative responses of H. subflexa and H. virescens to Z11-16:OAc had been expected. Tight linkage of these receptor genes indicates that mutations altering male response to complex blends could be maintained in linkage disequilibrium and could affect the speciation process. Other candidate genes such as those coding for pheromone binding proteins did not map to this QTL, but there was some genetic evidence of a QTL for response to Z11-16:OH associated with a sensory neuron membrane protein gene. PMID:20404144

  10. Functional evolution of a multigene family: orthologous and paralogous pheromone receptor genes in the turnip moth, Agrotis segetum.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Dan-Dan; Löfstedt, Christer

    2013-01-01

    Lepidopteran pheromone receptors (PRs), for which orthologies are evident among closely related species, provide an intriguing example of gene family evolution in terms of how new functions may arise. However, only a limited number of PRs have been functionally characterized so far and thus evolutionary scenarios suffer from elements of speculation. In this study we investigated the turnip moth Agrotis segetum, in which female moths produce a mixture of chemically related pheromone components that elicit specific responses from receptor cells on male antennae. We cloned nine A. segetum PR genes and the Orco gene by degenerate primer based RT-PCR. The nine PR genes, named as AsegOR1 and AsegOR3-10, fall into four distinct orthologous clusters of known lepidopteran PRs, of which one contains six paralogues. The paralogues are under relaxed selective pressure, contrasting with the purifying selection on other clusters. We identified the receptors AsegOR9, AsegOR4 and AsegOR5, specific for the respective homologous pheromone components (Z)-5-decenyl, (Z)-7-dodecenyl and (Z)-9-tetradecenyl acetates, by two-electrode voltage clamp recording from Xenopus laevis oocytes co-expressing Orco and each PR candidate. These receptors occur in three different orthologous clusters. We also found that the six paralogues with high sequence similarity vary dramatically in ligand selectivity and sensitivity. Different from AsegOR9, AsegOR6 showed a relatively large response to the behavioural antagonist (Z)-5-decenol, and a small response to (Z)-5-decenyl acetate. AsegOR1 was broadly tuned, but most responsive to (Z)-5-decenyl acetate, (Z)-7-dodecenyl acetate and the behavioural antagonist (Z)-8-dodecenyl acetate. AsegOR8 and AsegOR7, which differ from AsegOR6 and AsegOR1 by 7 and 10 aa respectively, showed much lower sensitivities. AsegOR10 showed only small responses to all the tested compounds. These results suggest that new receptors arise through gene duplication, and relaxed

  11. Functional Evolution of a Multigene Family: Orthologous and Paralogous Pheromone Receptor Genes in the Turnip Moth, Agrotis segetum

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Dan-Dan; Löfstedt, Christer

    2013-01-01

    Lepidopteran pheromone receptors (PRs), for which orthologies are evident among closely related species, provide an intriguing example of gene family evolution in terms of how new functions may arise. However, only a limited number of PRs have been functionally characterized so far and thus evolutionary scenarios suffer from elements of speculation. In this study we investigated the turnip moth Agrotis segetum, in which female moths produce a mixture of chemically related pheromone components that elicit specific responses from receptor cells on male antennae. We cloned nine A. segetum PR genes and the Orco gene by degenerate primer based RT-PCR. The nine PR genes, named as AsegOR1 and AsegOR3-10, fall into four distinct orthologous clusters of known lepidopteran PRs, of which one contains six paralogues. The paralogues are under relaxed selective pressure, contrasting with the purifying selection on other clusters. We identified the receptors AsegOR9, AsegOR4 and AsegOR5, specific for the respective homologous pheromone components (Z)-5-decenyl, (Z)-7-dodecenyl and (Z)-9-tetradecenyl acetates, by two-electrode voltage clamp recording from Xenopus laevis oocytes co-expressing Orco and each PR candidate. These receptors occur in three different orthologous clusters. We also found that the six paralogues with high sequence similarity vary dramatically in ligand selectivity and sensitivity. Different from AsegOR9, AsegOR6 showed a relatively large response to the behavioural antagonist (Z)-5-decenol, and a small response to (Z)-5-decenyl acetate. AsegOR1 was broadly tuned, but most responsive to (Z)-5-decenyl acetate, (Z)-7-dodecenyl acetate and the behavioural antagonist (Z)-8-dodecenyl acetate. AsegOR8 and AsegOR7, which differ from AsegOR6 and AsegOR1 by 7 and 10 aa respectively, showed much lower sensitivities. AsegOR10 showed only small responses to all the tested compounds. These results suggest that new receptors arise through gene duplication, and relaxed

  12. Gene Cluster Statistics with Gene Families

    PubMed Central

    Durand, Dannie

    2009-01-01

    Identifying genomic regions that descended from a common ancestor is important for understanding the function and evolution of genomes. In distantly related genomes, clusters of homologous gene pairs are evidence of candidate homologous regions. Demonstrating the statistical significance of such “gene clusters” is an essential component of comparative genomic analyses. However, currently there are no practical statistical tests for gene clusters that model the influence of the number of homologs in each gene family on cluster significance. In this work, we demonstrate empirically that failure to incorporate gene family size in gene cluster statistics results in overestimation of significance, leading to incorrect conclusions. We further present novel analytical methods for estimating gene cluster significance that take gene family size into account. Our methods do not require complete genome data and are suitable for testing individual clusters found in local regions, such as contigs in an unfinished assembly. We consider pairs of regions drawn from the same genome (paralogous clusters), as well as regions drawn from two different genomes (orthologous clusters). Determining cluster significance under general models of gene family size is computationally intractable. By assuming that all gene families are of equal size, we obtain analytical expressions that allow fast approximation of cluster probabilities. We evaluate the accuracy of this approximation by comparing the resulting gene cluster probabilities with cluster probabilities obtained by simulating a realistic, power-law distributed model of gene family size, with parameters inferred from genomic data. Surprisingly, despite the simplicity of the underlying assumption, our method accurately approximates the true cluster probabilities. It slightly overestimates these probabilities, yielding a conservative test. We present additional simulation results indicating the best choice of parameter values for data

  13. Sex pheromones and gene transfer in Enterococcus faecalis.

    PubMed

    Wirth, R

    2000-01-01

    Cell-density-dependent regulatory controls have been recognized in recent years to play major roles with regard to many microorganisms. In gram-negative bacteria very often N-acyl-homoserine lactones act as 'quorum-sensing' regulators, whilst gram-positive bacteria mainly use peptides to monitor their cell density. The so-called sex pheromone system of Enterococcus faecalis is just one example of the latter type of regulation. The system is a complex one; in this communication, I will discuss in particular the potential role of the peptides to also act as virulence factors.

  14. MFα1, the Gene Encoding the α Mating Pheromone of Candida albicans†

    PubMed Central

    Panwar, Sneh L.; Legrand, Melanie; Dignard, Daniel; Whiteway, Malcolm; Magee, Paul. T.

    2003-01-01

    Candida albicans, the single most frequently isolated human fungal pathogen, was thought to be asexual until the recent discovery of the mating-type-like locus (MTL). Homozygous MTL strains were constructed and shown to mate. Furthermore, it has been demonstrated that opaque-phase cells are more efficient in mating than white-phase cells. The similarity of the genes involved in the mating pathway in Saccharomyces cerevisiae and C. albicans includes at least one gene (KEX2) that is involved in the processing of the α mating pheromone in the two yeasts. Taking into account this similarity, we searched the C. albicans genome for sequences that would encode the α pheromone gene. Here we report the isolation and characterization of the gene MFα1, which codes for the precursor of the α mating pheromone in C. albicans. Two active α-peptides, 13 and 14 amino acids long, would be generated after the precursor molecule is processed in C. albicans. To examine the role of this gene in mating, we constructed an mfα1 null mutant of C. albicans. The mfα1 null mutant fails to mate as MTLα, while MTLa mfα1 cells are still mating competent. Experiments performed with the synthetic α-peptides show that they are capable of inducing growth arrest, as demonstrated by halo tests, and also induce shmooing in MTLa cells of C. albicans. These peptides are also able to complement the mating defect of an MTLα kex2 mutant strain when added exogenously, thereby confirming their roles as α mating pheromones. PMID:14665468

  15. Coding genes and molecular structures of the diffusible signalling proteins (pheromones) of the polar ciliate, Euplotes nobilii.

    PubMed

    Vallesi, Adriana; Alimenti, Claudio; Pedrini, Bill; Di Giuseppe, Graziano; Dini, Fernando; Wüthrich, Kurt; Luporini, Pierangelo

    2012-12-01

    In protozoan ciliates, diffusible signalling proteins (pheromones) regulate the vegetative growth and mating interactions. Here, the coding genes and the structures of the encoded pheromones were studied in genetically distinct wild-type strains representing interbreeding Antarctic and Arctic populations of the marine ciliate Euplotes nobilii. Determination of seven allelic pheromone-coding DNA sequences revealed that an unusual extension and high structural conservation of the 5' non-coding region are peculiar traits of this gene family, implying that this region is directly involved in the mechanism of pheromone gene expression, possibly through phenomena of intron splicing and/or frame-shifting. For four pheromones, the three-dimensional structures were determined by nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy in solution. These structures show that the pheromones represent a protein family which adapts to its polar environment by combining a structurally stable core of a three-helix bundle with extended polypeptide segments that are devoid of regular secondary structures and concomitantly show enhanced structural flexibility. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Pheromone evolution, reproductive genes, and comparative transcriptomics in mediterranean earthworms (annelida, oligochaeta, hormogastridae).

    PubMed

    Novo, Marta; Riesgo, Ana; Fernández-Guerra, Antoni; Giribet, Gonzalo

    2013-07-01

    Animals inhabiting cryptic environments are often subjected to morphological stasis due to the lack of obvious agents driving selection, and hence chemical cues may be important drivers of sexual selection and individual recognition. Here, we provide a comparative analysis of de novo-assembled transcriptomes in two Mediterranean earthworm species with the objective to detect pheromone proteins and other reproductive genes that could be involved in cryptic speciation processes, as recently characterized in other earthworm species. cDNA libraries of unspecific tissue of Hormogaster samnitica and three different tissues of H. elisae were sequenced in an Illumina Genome Analyzer II or Hi-Seq. Two pheromones, Attractin and Temptin were detected in all tissue samples and both species. Attractin resulted in a reliable marker for phylogenetic inference. Temptin contained multiple paralogs and was slightly overexpressed in the digestive tissue, suggesting that these pheromones could be released with the casts. Genes involved in sexual determination and fertilization were highly expressed in reproductive tissue. This is thus the first detailed analysis of the molecular machinery of sexual reproduction in earthworms.

  17. A cytochrome P450 gene plays a role in the recognition of sex pheromones in the tobacco cutworm, Spodoptera litura.

    PubMed

    Feng, B; Zheng, K; Li, C; Guo, Q; Du, Y

    2017-08-01

    Cytochrome P450 (P450 or CYP) genes are involved in fundamental physiological functions, and might be also associated with the olfactory recognition of sex pheromones in beetles and moths. A P450 gene, Spodoptera litura CYP4L4 (SlituCYP4L4), was cloned for the first time from the antennae of S. litura. SlituCYP4L4 was almost exclusively expressed in the adult stage and predominantly expressed in the adult antennae. In situ hybridization showed that SlituCYP4L4 localized mainly at the base of the long sensilla trichoidea, which responds to sex pheromone components. Pretreatment with an S. litura sex pheromone significantly reduced the expression levels of SlituCYP4L4, consistent with other genes involved in sex pheromone recognition. The expression level of SlituCYP4L4 was different in moths collected with different ratios of sex pheromone lures and collected in different geographical locations. After gene knockdown of SlituCYP4L4 in the antennae, the electroantennogram (EAG) responses of male and female moths to (9Z,11E)-tetradecadienyl acetate or (9Z,12E)-tetradecadienyl acetate were significantly decreased. In contrast, EAG responses to plant volatiles and sex pheromones of other moth species were not significantly influenced in these moths. SlituCYP4L4 was also expressed in the gustatory tissues and sensilla, which suggests that SlituCYP4L4 may have other functions in the chemosensory system. Our results have shown for the first time the function of a CYP gene with appendage-specific expression in insect sex pheromone recognition, especially in adult moths. © 2017 The Royal Entomological Society.

  18. The sex-inducing pheromone and wounding trigger the same set of genes in the multicellular green alga Volvox.

    PubMed Central

    Amon, P; Haas, E; Sumper, M

    1998-01-01

    The sex-inducing pheromone of the multicellular green alga Volvox carteri is a glycoprotein that triggers development of males and females at a concentration <10(-16) M. By differential screening of a cDNA library, two novel genes were identified that are transcribed under the control of this pheromone. Unexpectedly, one gene product was characterized as a lysozyme/chitinase, and the other gene product was shown to encode a polypeptide with a striking modular composition. This polypeptide has a cysteine protease domain separated by an extensin-like module from three repeats of a chitin binding domain. In higher plants, similar protein families are known to play an important role in defense against fungi. Indeed, we found that the same set of genes triggered by the sexual pheromone was also inducible in V. carteri by wounding. PMID:9596636

  19. The sex-inducing pheromone and wounding trigger the same set of genes in the multicellular green alga Volvox.

    PubMed

    Amon, P; Haas, E; Sumper, M

    1998-05-01

    The sex-inducing pheromone of the multicellular green alga Volvox carteri is a glycoprotein that triggers development of males and females at a concentration <10(-16) M. By differential screening of a cDNA library, two novel genes were identified that are transcribed under the control of this pheromone. Unexpectedly, one gene product was characterized as a lysozyme/chitinase, and the other gene product was shown to encode a polypeptide with a striking modular composition. This polypeptide has a cysteine protease domain separated by an extensin-like module from three repeats of a chitin binding domain. In higher plants, similar protein families are known to play an important role in defense against fungi. Indeed, we found that the same set of genes triggered by the sexual pheromone was also inducible in V. carteri by wounding.

  20. Identification and Functional Analysis of Pheromone and Receptor Genes in the B3 Mating Locus of Pleurotus eryngii

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Kyung-Hee; Kang, Young Min; Im, Chak Han; Ali, Asjad; Kim, Sun Young; Je, Hee-Jeong; Kim, Min-Keun; Rho, Hyun Su; Lee, Hyun Sook; Kong, Won-Sik; Ryu, Jae-San

    2014-01-01

    Pleurotus eryngii has recently become a major cultivated mushroom; it uses tetrapolar heterothallism as a part of its reproductive process. Sexual development progresses only when the A and B mating types are compatible. Such mating incompatibility occasionally limits the efficiency of breeding programs in which crossing within loci-shared strains or backcrossing strategies are employed. Therefore, understanding the mating system in edible mushroom fungi will help provide a short cut in the development of new strains. We isolated and identified pheromone and receptor genes in the B3 locus of P. eryngii and performed a functional analysis of the genes in the mating process by transformation. A genomic DNA library was constructed to map the entire mating-type locus. The B3 locus was found to contain four pheromone precursor genes and four receptor genes. Remarkably, receptor PESTE3.3.1 has just 34 amino acid residues in its C-terminal cytoplasmic region; therefore, it seems likely to be a receptor-like gene. Real-time quantitative RT-PCR (real-time qRT-PCR) revealed that most pheromone and receptor genes showed significantly higher expression in monokaryotic cells than dikaryotic cells. The pheromone genes PEphb3.1 and PEphb3.3 and the receptor gene PESTE3.3.1 were transformed into P5 (A3B4). The transformants were mated with a tester strain (A4B4), and the progeny showed clamp connections and a normal fruiting body, which indicates the proposed role of these genes in mating and fruiting processes. This result also confirms that PESTE3.3.1 is a receptor gene. In this study, we identified pheromone and receptor genes in the B3 locus of P. eryngii and found that some of those genes appear to play a role in the mating and fruiting processes. These results might help elucidate the mechanism of fruiting differentiation and improve breeding efficiency. PMID:25133513

  1. Identification and functional analysis of pheromone and receptor genes in the B3 mating locus of Pleurotus eryngii.

    PubMed

    Kim, Kyung-Hee; Kang, Young Min; Im, Chak Han; Ali, Asjad; Kim, Sun Young; Je, Hee-Jeong; Kim, Min-Keun; Rho, Hyun Su; Lee, Hyun Sook; Kong, Won-Sik; Ryu, Jae-San

    2014-01-01

    Pleurotus eryngii has recently become a major cultivated mushroom; it uses tetrapolar heterothallism as a part of its reproductive process. Sexual development progresses only when the A and B mating types are compatible. Such mating incompatibility occasionally limits the efficiency of breeding programs in which crossing within loci-shared strains or backcrossing strategies are employed. Therefore, understanding the mating system in edible mushroom fungi will help provide a short cut in the development of new strains. We isolated and identified pheromone and receptor genes in the B3 locus of P. eryngii and performed a functional analysis of the genes in the mating process by transformation. A genomic DNA library was constructed to map the entire mating-type locus. The B3 locus was found to contain four pheromone precursor genes and four receptor genes. Remarkably, receptor PESTE3.3.1 has just 34 amino acid residues in its C-terminal cytoplasmic region; therefore, it seems likely to be a receptor-like gene. Real-time quantitative RT-PCR (real-time qRT-PCR) revealed that most pheromone and receptor genes showed significantly higher expression in monokaryotic cells than dikaryotic cells. The pheromone genes PEphb3.1 and PEphb3.3 and the receptor gene PESTE3.3.1 were transformed into P5 (A3B4). The transformants were mated with a tester strain (A4B4), and the progeny showed clamp connections and a normal fruiting body, which indicates the proposed role of these genes in mating and fruiting processes. This result also confirms that PESTE3.3.1 is a receptor gene. In this study, we identified pheromone and receptor genes in the B3 locus of P. eryngii and found that some of those genes appear to play a role in the mating and fruiting processes. These results might help elucidate the mechanism of fruiting differentiation and improve breeding efficiency.

  2. The water-born protein pheromones of the polar protozoan ciliate, Euplotes nobilii: Coding genes and molecular structures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vallesi, Adriana; Alimenti, Claudio; Di Giuseppe, Graziano; Dini, Fernando; Pedrini, Bill; Wüthrich, Kurt; Luporini, Pierangelo

    2010-08-01

    The protozoan ciliate Euplotes nobilii found in Antarctic and Arctic coastal waters relies on secretion of water-soluble cell type-specific signal proteins (pheromones) to regulate its vegetative growth and sexual mating. For three of these psychrophilic pheromones we previously determined the three-dimensional structures by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy with protein solutions purified from the natural sources, which led to evidence that their adaptation to cold is primarily achieved by increased flexibility through an extension of regions free of regular secondary structures, and by increased exposure of negative charges on the protein surface. Then we cloned the coding genes of these E. nobilii pheromones from the transcriptionally active cell somatic nucleus (macronucleus) and characterized the full-length sequences. These sequences all contain an open reading frame of 252-285 nucleotides, which is specific for a cytoplasmic pheromone precursor that requires two proteolytic cleavages to remove a signal peptide and a pro segment before release of the mature protein into the extracellular environment. The 5‧ and 3‧ non-coding regions are two- to three-fold longer than the coding region and appear to be tightly conserved, probably in relation to the inclusion of intron sequences destined to be alternatively removed to play key regulatory roles in the mechanism of the pheromone gene expression.

  3. Association study of human VN1R1 pheromone receptor gene alleles and gender.

    PubMed

    Mitropoulos, Constantinos; Papachatzopoulou, Adamantia; Menounos, Panagiotis G; Kolonelou, Christina; Pappa, Magda; Bertolis, George; Gerou, Spiros; Patrinos, George P

    2007-01-01

    Pheromones are water-soluble chemicals that elicit neuroendocrine and physiological changes, while they also provide information about gender within individuals of the same species. VN1R1 is the only functional pheromone receptor in humans. We have undertaken a large mutation screening approach in 425 adult individuals from the Hellenic population to investigate whether the allelic differences, namely alleles 1a and 1b present in the human VN1R1 gene, are gender specific. Here we show that both VN1R1 1a and 1b alleles are found in chromosomes of both male and female subjects at frequency of 26.35% and 73.65%, respectively. Given the fact that those allelic differences potentially cause minor changes in the protein conformation and its transmembrane domains, as simulated by the TMHMM software, our data suggest that the allelic differences in the human VN1R1 gene are unlikely to be associated with gender and hence to contribute to distinct gender-specific behavior.

  4. Conversion events in gene clusters

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Gene clusters containing multiple similar genomic regions in close proximity are of great interest for biomedical studies because of their associations with inherited diseases. However, such regions are difficult to analyze due to their structural complexity and their complicated evolutionary histories, reflecting a variety of large-scale mutational events. In particular, conversion events can mislead inferences about the relationships among these regions, as traced by traditional methods such as construction of phylogenetic trees or multi-species alignments. Results To correct the distorted information generated by such methods, we have developed an automated pipeline called CHAP (Cluster History Analysis Package) for detecting conversion events. We used this pipeline to analyze the conversion events that affected two well-studied gene clusters (α-globin and β-globin) and three gene clusters for which comparative sequence data were generated from seven primate species: CCL (chemokine ligand), IFN (interferon), and CYP2abf (part of cytochrome P450 family 2). CHAP is freely available at http://www.bx.psu.edu/miller_lab. Conclusions These studies reveal the value of characterizing conversion events in the context of studying gene clusters in complex genomes. PMID:21798034

  5. Molecular Structures and Coding Genes of the Water-Borne Protein Pheromones of Euplotes petzi, an Early Diverging Polar Species of Euplotes.

    PubMed

    Pedrini, Bill; Suter-Stahel, Thea; Vallesi, Adriana; Alimenti, Claudio; Luporini, Pierangelo

    2017-03-01

    Euplotes is diversified into dozens of widely distributed species that produce structurally homologous families of water-borne protein pheromones governing self-/nonself-recognition phenomena. Structures of pheromones and pheromone coding genes have so far been studied from species lying in different positions of the Euplotes phylogenetic tree. We have now cloned the coding genes and determined the NMR molecular structure of four pheromones isolated from Euplotes petzi, a polar species which is phylogenetically distant from previously studied species and forms the deepest branching clade in the tree. The E. petzi pheromone genes have significantly shorter sequences than in other congeners, lack introns, and encode products of only 32 amino acids. Likewise, the three-dimensional structure of the E. petzi pheromones is markedly simpler than the three-helix up-down-up architecture previously determined in another polar species, Euplotes nobilii, and in a temperate-water species, Euplotes raikovi. Although sharing the same up-down-up architecture, it includes only two short α-helices that find their topological counterparts with the second and third helices of the E. raikovi and E. nobilii pheromones. The overall picture that emerges is that the evolution of Euplotes pheromones involves progressive increases in the gene sequence length and in the complexity of the three-dimensional molecular structure. © 2016 The Author(s) Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology © 2016 International Society of Protistologists.

  6. Clustering cancer gene expression data by projective clustering ensemble

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Xianxue; Yu, Guoxian

    2017-01-01

    Gene expression data analysis has paramount implications for gene treatments, cancer diagnosis and other domains. Clustering is an important and promising tool to analyze gene expression data. Gene expression data is often characterized by a large amount of genes but with limited samples, thus various projective clustering techniques and ensemble techniques have been suggested to combat with these challenges. However, it is rather challenging to synergy these two kinds of techniques together to avoid the curse of dimensionality problem and to boost the performance of gene expression data clustering. In this paper, we employ a projective clustering ensemble (PCE) to integrate the advantages of projective clustering and ensemble clustering, and to avoid the dilemma of combining multiple projective clusterings. Our experimental results on publicly available cancer gene expression data show PCE can improve the quality of clustering gene expression data by at least 4.5% (on average) than other related techniques, including dimensionality reduction based single clustering and ensemble approaches. The empirical study demonstrates that, to further boost the performance of clustering cancer gene expression data, it is necessary and promising to synergy projective clustering with ensemble clustering. PCE can serve as an effective alternative technique for clustering gene expression data. PMID:28234920

  7. Receptor for detection of a Type II sex pheromone in the winter moth Operophtera brumata.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Dan-Dan; Wang, Hong-Lei; Schultze, Anna; Froß, Heidrun; Francke, Wittko; Krieger, Jürgen; Löfstedt, Christer

    2016-01-05

    How signal diversity evolves under stabilizing selection in a pheromone-based mate recognition system is a conundrum. Female moths produce two major types of sex pheromones, i.e., long-chain acetates, alcohols and aldehydes (Type I) and polyenic hydrocarbons and epoxides (Type II), along different biosynthetic pathways. Little is known on how male pheromone receptor (PR) genes evolved to perceive the different pheromones. We report the identification of the first PR tuned to Type II pheromones, namely ObruOR1 from the winter moth, Operophtera brumata (Geometridae). ObruOR1 clusters together with previously ligand-unknown orthologues in the PR subfamily for the ancestral Type I pheromones, suggesting that O. brumata did not evolve a new type of PR to match the novel Type II signal but recruited receptors within an existing PR subfamily. AsegOR3, the ObruOR1 orthologue previously cloned from the noctuid Agrotis segetum that has Type I acetate pheromone components, responded significantly to another Type II hydrocarbon, suggesting that a common ancestor with Type I pheromones had receptors for both types of pheromones, a preadaptation for detection of Type II sex pheromone.

  8. Receptor for detection of a Type II sex pheromone in the winter moth Operophtera brumata

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Dan-Dan; Wang, Hong-Lei; Schultze, Anna; Froß, Heidrun; Francke, Wittko; Krieger, Jürgen; Löfstedt, Christer

    2016-01-01

    How signal diversity evolves under stabilizing selection in a pheromone-based mate recognition system is a conundrum. Female moths produce two major types of sex pheromones, i.e., long-chain acetates, alcohols and aldehydes (Type I) and polyenic hydrocarbons and epoxides (Type II), along different biosynthetic pathways. Little is known on how male pheromone receptor (PR) genes evolved to perceive the different pheromones. We report the identification of the first PR tuned to Type II pheromones, namely ObruOR1 from the winter moth, Operophtera brumata (Geometridae). ObruOR1 clusters together with previously ligand-unknown orthologues in the PR subfamily for the ancestral Type I pheromones, suggesting that O. brumata did not evolve a new type of PR to match the novel Type II signal but recruited receptors within an existing PR subfamily. AsegOR3, the ObruOR1 orthologue previously cloned from the noctuid Agrotis segetum that has Type I acetate pheromone components, responded significantly to another Type II hydrocarbon, suggesting that a common ancestor with Type I pheromones had receptors for both types of pheromones, a preadaptation for detection of Type II sex pheromone. PMID:26729427

  9. A Mads-Box Homologue in Ustilago Maydis Regulates the Expression of Pheromone-Inducible Genes but Is Nonessential

    PubMed Central

    Kruger, J.; Aichinger, C.; Kahmann, R.; Bolker, M.

    1997-01-01

    Mating and pathogenic development in the smut fungus Ustilago maydis are controlled by a pheromone/receptor system and two homeodomain proteins, bEp and bWp, which form heterodimers in nonallelic combinations. We describe the isolation of a gene, umc1, encoding a MADS-box protein, which displays significant similarity to the Saccharomyces cerevisiae MCM1 gene. umc1 complemented the viability defect of yeast mcm1 mutants. In U. maydis, umc1 deletion mutants were viable and pathogenic development was unaffected. Nevertheless, the basal expression levels of several pheromone-inducible genes were significantly reduced leading to an attenuated mating reaction. In contrast to S. cerevisiae, where Mcm1p plays a crucial role in the cell-type specific expression of a- and α-specific genes, the U. maydis umc1 gene appears to have only a modulatory effect on the expression of mating type-specific genes. PMID:9409827

  10. Pheromone Signalling

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hart, Adam G.

    2011-01-01

    Pheromones are chemicals used to communicate with members of the same species. First described in insects, pheromones are often used to attract mates but in social insects, such as ants and bees, pheromone use is much more sophisticated. For example, ants use pheromones to make foraging trails and the chemical and physical properties of the…

  11. Pheromone Signalling

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hart, Adam G.

    2011-01-01

    Pheromones are chemicals used to communicate with members of the same species. First described in insects, pheromones are often used to attract mates but in social insects, such as ants and bees, pheromone use is much more sophisticated. For example, ants use pheromones to make foraging trails and the chemical and physical properties of the…

  12. Rapid modulation of gene expression profiles in the telencephalon of male goldfish following exposure to waterborne sex pheromones.

    PubMed

    Lado, Wudu E; Zhang, Dapeng; Mennigen, Jan A; Zamora, Jacob M; Popesku, Jason T; Trudeau, Vance L

    2013-10-01

    Sex pheromones rapidly affect endocrine physiology and behaviour, but little is known about their effects on gene expression in the neural tissues that mediate olfactory processing. In this study, we exposed male goldfish for 6h to waterborne 17,20βP (4.3 nM) and PGF2α (3 nM), the main pre-ovulatory and post-ovulatory pheromones, respectively. Both treatments elevated milt volume (P=0.001). Microarray analysis of male telencephalon following PGF2α treatment identified 71 unique transcripts that were differentially expressed (q<5%; 67 up, 4 down). Functional annotation of these regulated genes indicates that PGF2α pheromone exposure affects diverse biological processes including nervous system functions, energy metabolism, cholesterol/lipoprotein transport, translational regulation, transcription and chromatin remodelling, protein processing, cytoskeletal organization, and signalling. By using real-time RT-PCR, we further validated three candidate genes, ependymin-II, calmodulin-A and aldolase C, which exhibited 3-5-fold increase in expression following PGF2α exposure. Expression levels of some other genes that are thought to be important for reproduction were also determined using real-time RT-PCR. Expression of sGnRH was increased by PGF2α, but not 17,20βP, whereas cGnRH expression was increased by 17,20βP but not PGF2α. In contrast, both pheromones increase the expression of glutamate (GluR2a, NR2A) and γ-aminobutyric acid (GABAA γ2) receptor subunit mRNAs. Milt release and rapid modulation of neuronal transcription are part of the response of males to female sex pheromones.

  13. Incomplete barriers to mitochondrial gene flow between pheromone races of the North American pine engraver, Ips pini (Say) (Coleoptera, Scolytidae)

    PubMed Central

    Cognato, A. I.; Seybold, S. J.; Sperling, F. A. H.

    1999-01-01

    The pine engraver Ips pini (Say) is known to include three pheromone races, but gene flow between these races has not been investigated. We used maternally inherited mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) variation to infer gene flow between 22 widely distributed North American populations of I. pini for a total of 217 individuals, based on 354 bp of the cytochrome oxidase I gene. Gene flow was estimated cladistically as migrants per generation (Nm) and as haplotype variation between populations (Nst). Three distinct mtDNA haplotype lineages, generally corresponding to eastern (I), Rocky Mountain (II) and western (III) regions of North America, were resolved with a total of 34 distinct I. pini haplotypes. The distributions of these lineages were largely congruent with the geographical ranges of the 'New York', 'California' and 'Idaho–Montana' pheromone races. Only individuals with lineage I mtDNA were observed among eastern populations, whereas individuals with lineage II or III mtDNA predominated among western populations. Gene flow (Nm and Nst) was generally moderate between all populations. However, the presence of lineage I mtDNA on the eastern side of western North America and the absence of lineage II and III mtDNA in eastern North America suggest directional gene flow from east to west. These results indicate that female-controlled assortative mating among pheromone races may disrupt gene flow between conspecifics, reflecting incomplete pre-mating barriers.

  14. Mutations in a gene encoding the. cap alpha. subunit of a Saccharomyces cerevisiae G protein indicate a role in mating pheromone signaling

    SciTech Connect

    Jahng, K.Y.; Ferguson, J.; Reed, S.I.

    1988-06-01

    Mutations which allowed conjugation by Saccharomyces cerevisiae cells lacking a mating pheromone receptor gene were selected. One of the genes defined by such mutations was isolated from a yeast genomic library by complementation of a temperature-sensitive mutation and is identically to the gene GPA1 (also known as SCG1), recently shown to be highly homologous to gene encoding the ..cap alpha.. subunits of mammalian G proteins. Physiological analysis of temperature-sensitive gpal mutations suggests that the encoded G protein is involved in signaling in response to mating pheromones. Mutational disruption of G-protein activity causes cell-cycle arrest in G/sub 1/, deposition of mating-specific cell surface aggultinins, and induction of pheromone-specific mRNa, all of which are responses to pheromone in wild-type cells. In addition, mutants can conjugate without the benefit of mating pheromone or pheromone receptor. A model is presented where the activated G protein has a negative impact on a constitutive signal which normally keeps the pheromone response repressed.

  15. A plant factory for moth pheromone production

    PubMed Central

    Ding, Bao-Jian; Hofvander, Per; Wang, Hong-Lei; Durrett, Timothy P.; Stymne, Sten; Löfstedt, Christer

    2014-01-01

    Moths depend on pheromone communication for mate finding and synthetic pheromones are used for monitoring or disruption of pheromone communication in pest insects. Here we produce moth sex pheromone, using Nicotiana benthamiana as a plant factory, by transient expression of up to four genes coding for consecutive biosynthetic steps. We specifically produce multicomponent sex pheromones for two species. The fatty alcohol fractions from the genetically modified plants are acetylated to mimic the respective sex pheromones of the small ermine moths Yponomeuta evonymella and Y. padella. These mixtures are very efficient and specific for trapping of male moths, matching the activity of conventionally produced pheromones. Our long-term vision is to design tailor-made production of any moth pheromone component in genetically modified plants. Such semisynthetic preparation of sex pheromones is a novel and cost-effective way of producing moderate to large quantities of pheromones with high purity and a minimum of hazardous waste. PMID:24569486

  16. A plant factory for moth pheromone production.

    PubMed

    Ding, Bao-Jian; Hofvander, Per; Wang, Hong-Lei; Durrett, Timothy P; Stymne, Sten; Löfstedt, Christer

    2014-02-25

    Moths depend on pheromone communication for mate finding and synthetic pheromones are used for monitoring or disruption of pheromone communication in pest insects. Here we produce moth sex pheromone, using Nicotiana benthamiana as a plant factory, by transient expression of up to four genes coding for consecutive biosynthetic steps. We specifically produce multicomponent sex pheromones for two species. The fatty alcohol fractions from the genetically modified plants are acetylated to mimic the respective sex pheromones of the small ermine moths Yponomeuta evonymella and Y. padella. These mixtures are very efficient and specific for trapping of male moths, matching the activity of conventionally produced pheromones. Our long-term vision is to design tailor-made production of any moth pheromone component in genetically modified plants. Such semisynthetic preparation of sex pheromones is a novel and cost-effective way of producing moderate to large quantities of pheromones with high purity and a minimum of hazardous waste.

  17. Pheromone production in bark beetles.

    PubMed

    Blomquist, Gary J; Figueroa-Teran, Rubi; Aw, Mory; Song, Minmin; Gorzalski, Andrew; Abbott, Nicole L; Chang, Eric; Tittiger, Claus

    2010-10-01

    The first aggregation pheromone components from bark beetles were identified in 1966 as a mixture of ipsdienol, ipsenol and verbenol. Since then, a number of additional components have been identified as both aggregation and anti-aggregation pheromones, with many of them being monoterpenoids or derived from monoterpenoids. The structural similarity between the major pheromone components of bark beetles and the monoterpenes found in the host trees, along with the association of monoterpenoid production with plant tissue, led to the paradigm that most if not all bark beetle pheromone components were derived from host tree precursors, often with a simple hydroxylation producing the pheromone. In the 1990 s there was a paradigm shift as evidence for de novo biosynthesis of pheromone components began to accumulate, and it is now recognized that most bark beetle monoterpenoid aggregation pheromone components are biosynthesized de novo. The bark beetle aggregation pheromones are released from the frass, which is consistent with the isoprenoid aggregation pheromones, including ipsdienol, ipsenol and frontalin, being produced in midgut tissue. It appears that exo-brevocomin is produced de novo in fat body tissue, and that verbenol, verbenone and verbenene are produced from dietary α-pinene in fat body tissue. Combined biochemical, molecular and functional genomics studies in Ips pini yielded the discovery and characterization of the enzymes that convert mevalonate pathway intermediates to pheromone components, including a novel bifunctional geranyl diphosphate synthase/myrcene synthase, a cytochrome P450 that hydroxylates myrcene to ipsdienol, and an oxidoreductase that interconverts ipsdienol and ipsdienone to achieve the appropriate stereochemistry of ipsdienol for pheromonal activity. Furthermore, the regulation of these genes and their corresponding enzymes proved complex and diverse in different species. Mevalonate pathway genes in pheromone producing male I. pini

  18. Characterization of Spodoptera litura (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) Takeout Genes and Their Differential Responses to Insecticides and Sex Pheromone

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Ling; Jiang, Yanyun

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Spodoptera litura (S. litura) is one of the most serious agricultural insect pests worldwide. Takeout (TO) is involved in a variety of physiological and biochemical pathways and performs various biological functions. We characterized 18 S. litura TO genes and investigated their differential responses to insecticides and sex pheromones. All predicted TO proteins have two Cysteines that are unique to the N-terminal of the TO family proteins and contain four highly conserved Prolines, two Glycines, and one Tyrosine. The expression levels of seven TO genes in the male antennae were higher than those in the female antennae, although the expression levels of 10 TO genes in the female were higher than those in the male. We investigated the effects of the sex pheromone and three insecticides, that is, chlorpyrifos (Ch), emamectin benzoate (EB), and fipronil (Fi), on the expression levels of the TO genes in the antennae. The results showed that the insecticides and sex pheromone affect the expression levels of the TO genes. One day after the treatment, the expression levels of SlTO15 and SlTO4 were significantly induced by the Ch/EB treatment. Two days after the S. litura moths were treated with Fi, the expression of SlTO4 was significantly induced (28.35-fold). The expression of SlTO10 changed significantly after the Ch and EB treatment, although the expression of SlTO12 and SlTO15 was inhibited by the three insecticides after two days of treatment. Our results lay a foundation for studying the role of TO genes in the interaction between insecticides and sex pheromone.

  19. Dramatic variation of the vomeronasal pheromone receptor gene repertoire among five orders of placental and marsupial mammals

    PubMed Central

    Grus, Wendy E.; Shi, Peng; Zhang, Ya-ping; Zhang, Jianzhi

    2005-01-01

    Pheromones are chemicals emitted and sensed by conspecifics to elicit social and sexual responses and are perceived in terrestrial vertebrates primarily by the vomeronasal organ (VNO). Pheromone receptors in the mammalian VNO are encoded by the V1R and V2R gene superfamilies. The V1R superfamily contains 187 and 102 putatively functional genes in the mouse and rat, respectively. To investigate whether this large repertoire size is typical among mammals with functional VNOs, we here describe the V1R repertoires of dog, cow, and opossum based on their draft genome sequences. The dog and cow have only 8 and 32 intact V1R genes, respectively. Thus, the intact V1R repertoire size varies by at least 23-fold among placental mammals with functional VNOs. To our knowledge, this size ratio represents the greatest among-species variation in gene family size of all mammalian gene families. Phylogenetic analysis of placental V1R genes suggests multiple losses of ancestral genes in carnivores and artiodactyls and gains of many new genes by gene duplication in rodents, manifesting massive gene births and deaths. We also identify 49 intact opossum V1R genes and discover independent expansions of the repertoire in placentals and marsupials. We further show a concordance between the V1R repertoire size and the complexity of VNO morphology, suggesting that the latter could indicate the sophistication of pheromone communications within species. In sum, our results demonstrate tremendous diversity and rapid evolution of mammalian V1R gene inventories and caution the generalization of VNO biology from rodents to all mammals. PMID:15790682

  20. Dramatic variation of the vomeronasal pheromone receptor gene repertoire among five orders of placental and marsupial mammals.

    PubMed

    Grus, Wendy E; Shi, Peng; Zhang, Ya-ping; Zhang, Jianzhi

    2005-04-19

    Pheromones are chemicals emitted and sensed by conspecifics to elicit social and sexual responses and are perceived in terrestrial vertebrates primarily by the vomeronasal organ (VNO). Pheromone receptors in the mammalian VNO are encoded by the V1R and V2R gene superfamilies. The V1R superfamily contains 187 and 102 putatively functional genes in the mouse and rat, respectively. To investigate whether this large repertoire size is typical among mammals with functional VNOs, we here describe the V1R repertoires of dog, cow, and opossum based on their draft genome sequences. The dog and cow have only 8 and 32 intact V1R genes, respectively. Thus, the intact V1R repertoire size varies by at least 23-fold among placental mammals with functional VNOs. To our knowledge, this size ratio represents the greatest among-species variation in gene family size of all mammalian gene families. Phylogenetic analysis of placental V1R genes suggests multiple losses of ancestral genes in carnivores and artiodactyls and gains of many new genes by gene duplication in rodents, manifesting massive gene births and deaths. We also identify 49 intact opossum V1R genes and discover independent expansions of the repertoire in placentals and marsupials. We further show a concordance between the V1R repertoire size and the complexity of VNO morphology, suggesting that the latter could indicate the sophistication of pheromone communications within species. In sum, our results demonstrate tremendous diversity and rapid evolution of mammalian V1R gene inventories and caution the generalization of VNO biology from rodents to all mammals.

  1. Multiple Δ11-desaturase genes selectively used for sex pheromone biosynthesis are conserved in Ostrinia moth genomes.

    PubMed

    Fujii, Takeshi; Yasukochi, Yuji; Rong, Yu; Matsuo, Takashi; Ishikawa, Yukio

    2015-06-01

    Regulation of the expression of fatty acyl-CoA desaturases, which introduce a double bond into the fatty acid moiety of the substrate, is crucial for the production of species-specific sex pheromones in moths. In Ostrinia moths, two distinct Δ11-desaturases and a Δ14-desaturase are known to be selectively used in the biosynthesis of sex pheromones. Of the two Δ11-desaturases, one identified from Ostrinia nubilalis and Ostrinia scapulalis, Z/EΔ11, forms the Z and E isomers of a double bond at position 11, whereas the other identified from Ostrinia latipennis, LATPG1(=EΔ11), exclusively forms an E double bond at position 11. Since the retroposon(ezi)-fused, non-functional Δ11-desaturase gene, ezi-Δ11α, in the genomes of O. nubilalis and O. furnacalis was previously suggested to be an orthologue of latpg1, we here explored Z/EΔ11 orthologues in the genome of O. latipennis. We newly identified two Δ11-desaturase genes, latpg2 and latpg3, which were orthologous to ezi-Δ11β and Z/EΔ11, respectively. We found that an ezi-like element was integrated in intron 1 of latpg1, and confirmed that only latpg1 was expressed in the pheromone gland of O. latipennis. Thus, at least three Δ11-desaturase genes are present in the genome of O. latipennis, and latpg1 is selectively transcribed in the pheromone gland of this moth. The non-functionality of ezi-inserted desaturase genes in O. nubilalis and O. furnacalis may not be a direct consequence of the insertion of an ezi- or ezi-like element into the gene.

  2. Use of lactobacilli and their pheromone-based regulatory mechanism in gene expression and drug delivery.

    PubMed

    Diep, D B; Mathiesen, G; Eijsink, V G H; Nes, I F

    2009-01-01

    Lactobacilli are common microorganisms in diverse vegetables and meat products and several of these are also indigenous inhabitants in the gastro-intestinal (GI) tract of humans and animals where they are believed to have health promoting effects on the host. One of the highly appreciated probiotic effects is their ability to inhibit the growth of pathogens by producing antimicrobial peptides, so-called bacteriocins. Production of some bacteriocins has been shown to be strictly regulated through a quorum-sensing based mechanism mediated by a secreted peptide-pheromone (also called induction peptide; IP), a membrane-located sensor (histidine protein kinase; HPK) and a cytoplasmic response regulator (RR). The interaction between an IP and its sensor, which is highly specific, leads to activation of the cognate RR which in turn binds to regulated promoters and activates gene expression. The HPKs and RRs are built up by conserved modules, and the signalling between them within a network is efficient and directional, and can easily be activated by exogenously added synthetic IPs. Consequently, components from such regulatory networks have successfully been exploited in construction of a number of inducible gene expression systems. In this review, we discuss some well-characterised quorum sensing networks involved in bacteriocin production in lactobacilli, with special focus on the use of the regulatory components in gene expression and on lactobacilli as potential delivery vehicle for therapeutic and vaccine purposes.

  3. A Bidirectional Circuit Switch Reroutes Pheromone Signals in Male and Female Brains

    PubMed Central

    Kohl, Johannes; Ostrovsky, Aaron D.; Frechter, Shahar; Jefferis, Gregory S.X.E.

    2013-01-01

    Summary The Drosophila sex pheromone cVA elicits different behaviors in males and females. First- and second-order olfactory neurons show identical pheromone responses, suggesting that sex genes differentially wire circuits deeper in the brain. Using in vivo whole-cell electrophysiology, we now show that two clusters of third-order olfactory neurons have dimorphic pheromone responses. One cluster responds in females; the other responds in males. These clusters are present in both sexes and share a common input pathway, but sex-specific wiring reroutes pheromone information. Regulating dendritic position, the fruitless transcription factor both connects the male-responsive cluster and disconnects the female-responsive cluster from pheromone input. Selective masculinization of third-order neurons transforms their morphology and pheromone responses, demonstrating that circuits can be functionally rewired by the cell-autonomous action of a switch gene. This bidirectional switch, analogous to an electrical changeover switch, provides a simple circuit logic to activate different behaviors in males and females. PMID:24360281

  4. Persistence drives gene clustering in bacterial genomes

    PubMed Central

    Fang, Gang; Rocha, Eduardo PC; Danchin, Antoine

    2008-01-01

    Background Gene clustering plays an important role in the organization of the bacterial chromosome and several mechanisms have been proposed to explain its extent. However, the controversies raised about the validity of each of these mechanisms remind us that the cause of this gene organization remains an open question. Models proposed to explain clustering did not take into account the function of the gene products nor the likely presence or absence of a given gene in a genome. However, genomes harbor two very different categories of genes: those genes present in a majority of organisms – persistent genes – and those present in very few organisms – rare genes. Results We show that two classes of genes are significantly clustered in bacterial genomes: the highly persistent and the rare genes. The clustering of rare genes is readily explained by the selfish operon theory. Yet, genes persistently present in bacterial genomes are also clustered and we try to understand why. We propose a model accounting specifically for such clustering, and show that indispensability in a genome with frequent gene deletion and insertion leads to the transient clustering of these genes. The model describes how clusters are created via the gene flux that continuously introduces new genes while deleting others. We then test if known selective processes, such as co-transcription, physical interaction or functional neighborhood, account for the stabilization of these clusters. Conclusion We show that the strong selective pressure acting on the function of persistent genes, in a permanent state of flux of genes in bacterial genomes, maintaining their size fairly constant, that drives persistent genes clustering. A further selective stabilization process might contribute to maintaining the clustering. PMID:18179692

  5. Behavioral and pheromonal phenotypes associated with expression of loss-of-function mutations in the sex-lethal gene of Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Tompkins, L; McRobert, S P

    1995-02-01

    We have shown that female-specific functions of the sex determination gene Sex-lethal (Sxl) regulate sexual behavior and synthesis of the three major sex pheromones that have been identified in normal, sexually mature Drosophilia melanogaster males and virgin females. Diplo-X flies, heterozygous in trans for two partial loss-of-function Sxl mutations, elicit less courtship than normal females and produce large quantities of the inhibitory pheromones that normal males synthesize. In addition, the mutant flies fail to synthesize the female-predominant aphrodisiac pheromone or make very small quantities of this compound.

  6. Mammalian pheromones.

    PubMed

    Liberles, Stephen D

    2014-01-01

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

  7. Mammalian Pheromones

    PubMed Central

    Liberles, Stephen D.

    2015-01-01

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

  8. Gene-Ontology-based clustering of gene expression data.

    PubMed

    Adryan, Boris; Schuh, Reinhard

    2004-11-01

    The expected correlation between genetic co-regulation and affiliation to a common biological process is not necessarily the case when numerical cluster algorithms are applied to gene expression data. GO-Cluster uses the tree structure of the Gene Ontology database as a framework for numerical clustering, and thus allowing a simple visualization of gene expression data at various levels of the ontology tree. The 32-bit Windows application is freely available at http://www.mpibpc.mpg.de/go-cluster/

  9. Finding approximate gene clusters with Gecko 3

    PubMed Central

    Winter, Sascha; Jahn, Katharina; Wehner, Stefanie; Kuchenbecker, Leon; Marz, Manja; Stoye, Jens; Böcker, Sebastian

    2016-01-01

    Gene-order-based comparison of multiple genomes provides signals for functional analysis of genes and the evolutionary process of genome organization. Gene clusters are regions of co-localized genes on genomes of different species. The rapid increase in sequenced genomes necessitates bioinformatics tools for finding gene clusters in hundreds of genomes. Existing tools are often restricted to few (in many cases, only two) genomes, and often make restrictive assumptions such as short perfect conservation, conserved gene order or monophyletic gene clusters. We present Gecko 3, an open-source software for finding gene clusters in hundreds of bacterial genomes, that comes with an easy-to-use graphical user interface. The underlying gene cluster model is intuitive, can cope with low degrees of conservation as well as misannotations and is complemented by a sound statistical evaluation. To evaluate the biological benefit of Gecko 3 and to exemplify our method, we search for gene clusters in a dataset of 678 bacterial genomes using Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 as a reference. We confirm detected gene clusters reviewing the literature and comparing them to a database of operons; we detect two novel clusters, which were confirmed by publicly available experimental RNA-Seq data. The computational analysis is carried out on a laptop computer in <40 min. PMID:27679480

  10. The evolution of pheromonal communication.

    PubMed

    Swaney, William T; Keverne, Eric B

    2009-06-25

    Small-brained rodents have been the principle focus for pheromonal research and have provided comprehensive insights into the chemosensory mechanisms that underpin pheromonal communication and the hugely important roles that pheromones play in behavioural regulation. However, pheromonal communication does not start or end with the mouse and the rat, and work in amphibians reveals much about the likely evolutionary origins of the chemosensory systems that mediate pheromonal effects. The dual olfactory organs (the main olfactory epithelium and the vomeronasal organ), their receptors and their separate projection pathways appear to have ancient evolutionary origins, appearing in the aquatic ancestors of all tetrapods during the Devonian period and so pre-dating the transition to land. While the vomeronasal organ has long been considered an exclusively pheromonal organ, accumulating evidence indicates that it is not the sole channel for the transduction of pheromonal information and that both olfactory systems have been co-opted for the detection of different pheromone signals over the course of evolution. This has also led to great diversity in the vomeronasal and olfactory receptor families, with enormous levels of gene diversity and inactivation of genes in different species. Finally, the evolution of trichromacy as well as huge increases in social complexity have minimised the role of pheromones in the lives of primates, leading to the total inactivation of the vomeronasal system in catarrhine primates while the brain increased in size and behaviour became emancipated from hormonal regulation.

  11. A moth pheromone brewery: production of (Z)-11-hexadecenol by heterologous co-expression of two biosynthetic genes from a noctuid moth in a yeast cell factory

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Moths (Lepidoptera) are highly dependent on chemical communication to find a mate. Compared to conventional unselective insecticides, synthetic pheromones have successfully served to lure male moths as a specific and environmentally friendly way to control important pest species. However, the chemical synthesis and purification of the sex pheromone components in large amounts is a difficult and costly task. The repertoire of enzymes involved in moth pheromone biosynthesis in insecta can be seen as a library of specific catalysts that can be used to facilitate the synthesis of a particular chemical component. In this study, we present a novel approach to effectively aid in the preparation of semi-synthetic pheromone components using an engineered vector co-expressing two key biosynthetic enzymes in a simple yeast cell factory. Results We first identified and functionally characterized a ∆11 Fatty-Acyl Desaturase and a Fatty-Acyl Reductase from the Turnip moth, Agrotis segetum. The ∆11-desaturase produced predominantly Z11-16:acyl, a common pheromone component precursor, from the abundant yeast palmitic acid and the FAR transformed a series of saturated and unsaturated fatty acids into their corresponding alcohols which may serve as pheromone components in many moth species. Secondly, when we co-expressed the genes in the Brewer’s yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, a set of long-chain fatty acids and alcohols that are not naturally occurring in yeast were produced from inherent yeast fatty acids, and the presence of (Z)-11-hexadecenol (Z11-16:OH), demonstrated that both heterologous enzymes were active in concert. A 100 ml batch yeast culture produced on average 19.5 μg Z11-16:OH. Finally, we demonstrated that oxidized extracts from the yeast cells containing (Z)-11-hexadecenal and other aldehyde pheromone compounds elicited specific electrophysiological activity from male antennae of the Tobacco budworm, Heliothis virescens, supporting the idea that

  12. A moth pheromone brewery: production of (Z)-11-hexadecenol by heterologous co-expression of two biosynthetic genes from a noctuid moth in a yeast cell factory.

    PubMed

    Hagström, Åsa K; Wang, Hong-Lei; Liénard, Marjorie A; Lassance, Jean-Marc; Johansson, Tomas; Löfstedt, Christer

    2013-12-13

    Moths (Lepidoptera) are highly dependent on chemical communication to find a mate. Compared to conventional unselective insecticides, synthetic pheromones have successfully served to lure male moths as a specific and environmentally friendly way to control important pest species. However, the chemical synthesis and purification of the sex pheromone components in large amounts is a difficult and costly task. The repertoire of enzymes involved in moth pheromone biosynthesis in insecta can be seen as a library of specific catalysts that can be used to facilitate the synthesis of a particular chemical component. In this study, we present a novel approach to effectively aid in the preparation of semi-synthetic pheromone components using an engineered vector co-expressing two key biosynthetic enzymes in a simple yeast cell factory. We first identified and functionally characterized a ∆11 Fatty-Acyl Desaturase and a Fatty-Acyl Reductase from the Turnip moth, Agrotis segetum. The ∆11-desaturase produced predominantly Z11-16:acyl, a common pheromone component precursor, from the abundant yeast palmitic acid and the FAR transformed a series of saturated and unsaturated fatty acids into their corresponding alcohols which may serve as pheromone components in many moth species. Secondly, when we co-expressed the genes in the Brewer's yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, a set of long-chain fatty acids and alcohols that are not naturally occurring in yeast were produced from inherent yeast fatty acids, and the presence of (Z)-11-hexadecenol (Z11-16:OH), demonstrated that both heterologous enzymes were active in concert. A 100 ml batch yeast culture produced on average 19.5 μg Z11-16:OH. Finally, we demonstrated that oxidized extracts from the yeast cells containing (Z)-11-hexadecenal and other aldehyde pheromone compounds elicited specific electrophysiological activity from male antennae of the Tobacco budworm, Heliothis virescens, supporting the idea that genes from different

  13. Multiple sex pheromone genes are expressed in the abdominal glands of the smooth newt (Lissotriton vulgaris) and Montandon's Newt (L. montandoni) (Salamandridae).

    PubMed

    Artur, Osikowski; Wiesław, Babik; Paweł, Grzmil; Jacek M, Szymura

    2008-06-01

    The smooth newt (Lissotriton "Triturus" vulgaris) and Montandon's newt (L."T." montandoni) are sister species exhibiting pronounced differences in male secondary sexual traits but nevertheless hybridizing and producing fertile hybrids in nature. Since pheromonal communication is an important aspect of the reproductive biology of urodeles, structural differentiation of peptide pheromones and their receptors may contribute to incipient reproductive isolation. The aim of the study was the identification of genes encoding putative courtship pheromone precursors in two newt species and the reconstruction of phylogenetic relationships among them. Our analyses were based on cDNA obtained from the transcripts from the abdominal glands of male newts. We identified five unique cDNA sequences encoding the putative pheromone precursors in L. vulgaris and three additional unique sequences in L. montandoni. The results indicate that in the abdominal glands of Lissotriton newts more than one pheromone-encoding gene is expressed and that these loci form a gene family. Phylogenetic analysis indicates that the divergence of at least some of these genes predates the radiation of European newts.

  14. Expression of a desaturase gene, desat1, in neural and nonneural tissues separately affects perception and emission of sex pheromones in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Bousquet, François; Nojima, Tetsuya; Houot, Benjamin; Chauvel, Isabelle; Chaudy, Sylvie; Dupas, Stéphane; Yamamoto, Daisuke; Ferveur, Jean-François

    2012-01-01

    Animals often use sex pheromones for mate choice and reproduction. As for other signals, the genetic control of the emission and perception of sex pheromones must be tightly coadapted, and yet we still have no worked-out example of how these two aspects interact. Most models suggest that emission and perception rely on separate genetic control. We have identified a Drosophila melanogaster gene, desat1, that is involved in both the emission and the perception of sex pheromones. To explore the mechanism whereby these two aspects of communication interact, we investigated the relationship between the molecular structure, tissue-specific expression, and pheromonal phenotypes of desat1. We characterized the five desat1 transcripts—all of which yielded the same desaturase protein—and constructed transgenes with the different desat1 putative regulatory regions. Each region was used to target reporter transgenes with either (i) the fluorescent GFP marker to reveal desat1 tissue expression, or (ii) the desat1 RNAi sequence to determine the effects of genetic down-regulation on pheromonal phenotypes. We found that desat1 is expressed in a variety of neural and nonneural tissues, most of which are involved in reproductive functions. Our results suggest that distinct desat1 putative regulatory regions independently drive the expression in nonneural and in neural cells, such that the emission and perception of sex pheromones are precisely coordinated in this species. PMID:22114190

  15. The roles of gene duplication, gene conversion and positive selection in rodent Esp and Mup pheromone gene families with comparison to the Abp family.

    PubMed

    Karn, Robert C; Laukaitis, Christina M

    2012-01-01

    Three proteinaceous pheromone families, the androgen-binding proteins (ABPs), the exocrine-gland secreting peptides (ESPs) and the major urinary proteins (MUPs) are encoded by large gene families in the genomes of Mus musculus and Rattus norvegicus. We studied the evolutionary histories of the Mup and Esp genes and compared them with what is known about the Abp genes. Apparently gene conversion has played little if any role in the expansion of the mouse Class A and Class B Mup genes and pseudogenes, and the rat Mups. By contrast, we found evidence of extensive gene conversion in many Esp genes although not in all of them. Our studies of selection identified at least two amino acid sites in β-sheets as having evolved under positive selection in the mouse Class A and Class B MUPs and in rat MUPs. We show that selection may have acted on the ESPs by determining K(a)/K(s) for Exon 3 sequences with and without the converted sequence segment. While it appears that purifying selection acted on the ESP signal peptides, the secreted portions of the ESPs probably have undergone much more rapid evolution. When the inner gene converted fragment sequences were removed, eleven Esp paralogs were present in two or more pairs with K(a)/K(s) >1.0 and thus we propose that positive selection is detectable by this means in at least some mouse Esp paralogs. We compare and contrast the evolutionary histories of all three mouse pheromone gene families in light of their proposed functions in mouse communication.

  16. Aphid pheromones.

    PubMed

    Dewhirst, Sarah Y; Pickett, John A; Hardie, Jim

    2010-01-01

    Aphids are the main insect pests of agricultural crops in temperate regions causing major economic losses. Although broad-spectrum insecticides are available for control, alternative and more targeted methods are needed due to insecticide resistance and increasing environmental pressures. An alternative control method for aphids is to exploit their pheromones, which have been extensively studied in recent years. For example, aphids release alarm pheromones in response to natural enemy attack and these could be used to deter aphids from the crops. Sex pheromones have also been identified which could be used to interfere males locating conspecific females (oviparae), as well as for manipulating natural enemies. Several hypotheses relating to how species integrity is maintained via the aphid sex pheromone have been proposed. The composition and behavioral activity of these pheromones, and how their use could be implemented in integrated pest management systems to control aphids, is discussed. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Clustering of High Throughput Gene Expression Data

    PubMed Central

    Pirim, Harun; Ekşioğlu, Burak; Perkins, Andy; Yüceer, Çetin

    2012-01-01

    High throughput biological data need to be processed, analyzed, and interpreted to address problems in life sciences. Bioinformatics, computational biology, and systems biology deal with biological problems using computational methods. Clustering is one of the methods used to gain insight into biological processes, particularly at the genomics level. Clearly, clustering can be used in many areas of biological data analysis. However, this paper presents a review of the current clustering algorithms designed especially for analyzing gene expression data. It is also intended to introduce one of the main problems in bioinformatics - clustering gene expression data - to the operations research community. PMID:23144527

  18. Sequence analysis of porothramycin biosynthetic gene cluster.

    PubMed

    Najmanova, Lucie; Ulanova, Dana; Jelinkova, Marketa; Kamenik, Zdenek; Kettnerova, Eliska; Koberska, Marketa; Gazak, Radek; Radojevic, Bojana; Janata, Jiri

    2014-11-01

    The biosynthetic gene cluster of porothramycin, a sequence-selective DNA alkylating compound, was identified in the genome of producing strain Streptomyces albus subsp. albus (ATCC 39897) and sequentially characterized. A 39.7 kb long DNA region contains 27 putative genes, 18 of them revealing high similarity with homologous genes from biosynthetic gene cluster of closely related pyrrolobenzodiazepine (PBD) compound anthramycin. However, considering the structures of both compounds, the number of differences in the gene composition of compared biosynthetic gene clusters was unexpectedly high, indicating participation of alternative enzymes in biosynthesis of both porothramycin precursors, anthranilate, and branched L-proline derivative. Based on the sequence analysis of putative NRPS modules Por20 and Por21, we suppose that in porothramycin biosynthesis, the methylation of anthranilate unit occurs prior to the condensation reaction, while modifications of branched proline derivative, oxidation, and dimethylation of the side chain occur on already condensed PBD core. Corresponding two specific methyltransferase encoding genes por26 and por25 were identified in the porothramycin gene cluster. Surprisingly, also methyltransferase gene por18 homologous to orf19 from anthramycin biosynthesis was detected in porothramycin gene cluster even though the appropriate biosynthetic step is missing, as suggested by ultra high-performance liquid chromatography-diode array detection-mass spectrometry (UHPLC-DAD-MS) analysis of the product in the S. albus culture broth.

  19. Clustering of gene ontology terms in genomes.

    PubMed

    Tiirikka, Timo; Siermala, Markku; Vihinen, Mauno

    2014-10-25

    Although protein coding genes occupy only a small fraction of genomes in higher species, they are not randomly distributed within or between chromosomes. Clustering of genes with related function(s) and/or characteristics has been evident at several different levels. To study how common the clustering of functionally related genes is and what kind of functions the end products of these genes are involved, we collected gene ontology (GO) terms for complete genomes and developed a method to detect previously undefined gene clustering. Exhaustive analysis was performed for seven widely studied species ranging from human to Escherichia coli. To overcome problems related to varying gene lengths and densities, a novel method was developed and a fixed number of genes were analyzed irrespective of the genome span covered. Statistically very significant GO term clustering was apparent in all the investigated genomes. The analysis window, which ranged from 5 to 50 consecutive genes, revealed extensive GO term clusters for genes with widely varying functions. Here, the most interesting and significant results are discussed and the complete dataset for each analyzed species is available at the GOme database at http://bioinf.uta.fi/GOme. The results indicated that clusters of genes with related functions are very common, not only in bacteria, in which operons are frequent, but also in all the studied species irrespective of how complex they are. There are some differences between species but in all of them GO term clusters are common and of widely differing sizes. The presented method can be applied to analyze any genome or part of a genome for which descriptive features are available, and thus is not restricted to ontology terms. This method can also be applied to investigate gene and protein expression patterns. The results pave a way for further studies of mechanisms that shape genome structure and evolutionary forces related to them. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All

  20. Pheromones and pheromone receptors are required for proper sexual development in the homothallic ascomycete Sordaria macrospora.

    PubMed

    Mayrhofer, Severine; Weber, Jan M; Pöggeler, Stefanie

    2006-03-01

    The homothallic, filamentous ascomycete Sordaria macrospora is self-fertile and produces sexual fruiting bodies (perithecia) without a mating partner. Even so, S. macrospora transcriptionally expresses two pheromone-precursor genes (ppg1 and ppg2) and two pheromone-receptor genes (pre1 and pre2). The proteins encoded by these genes are similar to alpha-factor-like and a-factor-like pheromones and to G-protein-coupled pheromone receptors of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. It has been suggested that in S. macrospora, PPG1/PRE2 and PPG2/PRE1 form two cognate pheromone-receptor pairs. To investigate their function, we deleted (delta) pheromone-precursor genes (delta ppg1, delta ppg2) and receptor genes (delta pre1, delta pre2) and generated single- as well as double-knockout strains. No effect on vegetative growth, fruiting-body, and ascospore development was seen in the single pheromone-mutant and receptor-mutant strains, respectively. However, double-knockout strains lacking any compatible pheromone-receptor pair (delta pre2/delta ppg2, delta pre1/delta ppg1) and the double-pheromone mutant (delta ppg1/delta ppg2) displayed a drastically reduced number of perithecia and sexual spores, whereas deletion of both receptor genes (delta pre1/delta pre2) completely eliminated fruiting-body and ascospore formation. The results suggest that pheromones and pheromone receptors are required for optimal sexual reproduction of the homothallic S. macrospora.

  1. Chicken rRNA Gene Cluster Structure.

    PubMed

    Dyomin, Alexander G; Koshel, Elena I; Kiselev, Artem M; Saifitdinova, Alsu F; Galkina, Svetlana A; Fukagawa, Tatsuo; Kostareva, Anna A; Gaginskaya, Elena R

    2016-01-01

    Ribosomal RNA (rRNA) genes, whose activity results in nucleolus formation, constitute an extremely important part of genome. Despite the extensive exploration into avian genomes, no complete description of avian rRNA gene primary structure has been offered so far. We publish a complete chicken rRNA gene cluster sequence here, including 5'ETS (1836 bp), 18S rRNA gene (1823 bp), ITS1 (2530 bp), 5.8S rRNA gene (157 bp), ITS2 (733 bp), 28S rRNA gene (4441 bp) and 3'ETS (343 bp). The rRNA gene cluster sequence of 11863 bp was assembled from raw reads and deposited to GenBank under KT445934 accession number. The assembly was validated through in situ fluorescent hybridization analysis on chicken metaphase chromosomes using computed and synthesized specific probes, as well as through the reference assembly against de novo assembled rRNA gene cluster sequence using sequenced fragments of BAC-clone containing chicken NOR (nucleolus organizer region). The results have confirmed the chicken rRNA gene cluster validity.

  2. Chicken rRNA Gene Cluster Structure

    PubMed Central

    Dyomin, Alexander G.; Koshel, Elena I.; Kiselev, Artem M.; Saifitdinova, Alsu F.; Galkina, Svetlana A.; Fukagawa, Tatsuo; Kostareva, Anna A.

    2016-01-01

    Ribosomal RNA (rRNA) genes, whose activity results in nucleolus formation, constitute an extremely important part of genome. Despite the extensive exploration into avian genomes, no complete description of avian rRNA gene primary structure has been offered so far. We publish a complete chicken rRNA gene cluster sequence here, including 5’ETS (1836 bp), 18S rRNA gene (1823 bp), ITS1 (2530 bp), 5.8S rRNA gene (157 bp), ITS2 (733 bp), 28S rRNA gene (4441 bp) and 3’ETS (343 bp). The rRNA gene cluster sequence of 11863 bp was assembled from raw reads and deposited to GenBank under KT445934 accession number. The assembly was validated through in situ fluorescent hybridization analysis on chicken metaphase chromosomes using computed and synthesized specific probes, as well as through the reference assembly against de novo assembled rRNA gene cluster sequence using sequenced fragments of BAC-clone containing chicken NOR (nucleolus organizer region). The results have confirmed the chicken rRNA gene cluster validity. PMID:27299357

  3. Evolution of chordate hox gene clusters.

    PubMed

    Ruddle, F H; Amemiya, C T; Carr, J L; Kim, C B; Ledje, C; Shashikant, C S; Wagner, G P

    1999-05-18

    In this article, we consider the role of the Hox genes in chordate and vertebrate evolution from the viewpoints of molecular and developmental evolution. Models of Hox cluster duplication are considered with emphasis on a threefold duplication model. We also show that cluster duplication is consistent with a semiconservative model of duplication, where following duplication, one daughter cluster remains unmodified, while the other diverges and assumes a new architecture and presumably new functions. Evidence is reviewed, suggesting that Hox gene enhancers have played an important role in body plan evolution. Finally, we contrast the invertebrates and vertebrates in terms of genome and Hox cluster duplication which are present in the latter, but not the former. We question whether gene duplication has been important in vertebrates for the introduction of novel features such as limbs, a urogenital system, and specialized neuromuscular interactions.

  4. Clustering gene expression data using graph separators.

    PubMed

    Kaba, Bangaly; Pinet, Nicolas; Lelandais, Gaëlle; Sigayret, Alain; Berry, Anne

    2007-01-01

    Recent work has used graphs to modelize expression data from microarray experiments, in view of partitioning the genes into clusters. In this paper, we introduce the use of a decomposition by clique separators. Our aim is to improve the classical clustering methods in two ways: first we want to allow an overlap between clusters, as this seems biologically sound, and second we want to be guided by the structure of the graph to define the number of clusters. We test this approach with a well-known yeast database (Saccharomyces cerevisiae). Our results are good, as the expression profiles of the clusters we find are very coherent. Moreover, we are able to organize into another graph the clusters we find, and order them in a fashion which turns out to respect the chronological order defined by the the sporulation process.

  5. Pichia stipitis genomics, transcriptomics, and gene clusters

    Treesearch

    Thomas W. Jeffries; Jennifer R. Headman Van Vleet

    2009-01-01

    Genome sequencing and subsequent global gene expression studies have advanced our understanding of the lignocellulose-fermenting yeast Pichia stipitis. These studies have provided an insight into its central carbon metabolism, and analysis of its genome has revealed numerous functional gene clusters and tandem repeats. Specialized physiological traits are often the...

  6. Clustering of gene expression profiles: creating initialization-independent clusterings by eliminating unstable genes.

    PubMed

    De Mulder, Wim; Kuiper, Martin; Boel, René

    2010-03-25

    Clustering is an important approach in the analysis of biological data, and often a first step to identify interesting patterns of coexpression in gene expression data. Because of the high complexity and diversity of gene expression data, many genes cannot be easily assigned to a cluster, but even if the dissimilarity of these genes with all other gene groups is large, they will finally be forced to become member of a cluster. In this paper we show how to detect such elements, called unstable elements. We have developed an approach for iterative clustering algorithms in which unstable elements are deleted, making the iterative algorithm less dependent on initial centers. Although the approach is unsupervised, it is less likely that the clusters into which the reduced data set is subdivided contain false positives. This clustering yields a more differentiated approach for biological data, since the cluster analysis is divided into two parts: the pruned data set is divided into highly consistent clusters in an unsupervised way and the removed, unstable elements for which no meaningful cluster exists in unsupervised terms can be given a cluster with the use of biological knowledge and information about the likelihood of cluster membership. We illustrate our framework on both an artificial and real biological data set.

  7. Changes in mate recognition through alterations of pheromones and receptors in the multisexual mushroom fungus Schizophyllum commune.

    PubMed Central

    Fowler, T J; Mitton, M F; Vaillancourt, L J; Raper, C A

    2001-01-01

    Schizophyllum commune has thousands of mating types defined in part by numerous lipopeptide pheromones and their G-protein-coupled receptors. These molecules are encoded within multiple versions of two redundantly functioning B mating-type loci, B alpha and B beta. Compatible combinations of pheromones and receptors, produced by individuals of different B mating types, trigger a pathway of fertilization required for sexual development. Analysis of the B beta 2 mating-type locus revealed a large cluster of genes encoding a single pheromone receptor and eight different pheromones. Phenotypic effects of mutations within these genes indicated that small changes in both types of molecules could significantly alter their specificity of interaction. For example, a conservative amino acid substitution in a pheromone resulted in a gain of function toward one receptor and a loss of function with another. A two-amino-acid deletion from a receptor precluded the mutant pheromone from activating the mutant receptor, yet this receptor was activated by other pheromones. Sequence comparisons provided clues toward understanding how so many variants of these multigenic loci could have evolved through duplication and mutational divergence. A three-step model for the origin of new variants comparable to those found in nature is presented. PMID:11514441

  8. Identification and characterization of pheromone receptors and interplay between receptors and pheromone binding proteins in the diamondback moth, Plutella xyllostella.

    PubMed

    Sun, Mengjing; Liu, Yang; Walker, William B; Liu, Chengcheng; Lin, Kejian; Gu, Shaohua; Zhang, Yongjun; Zhou, Jingjiang; Wang, Guirong

    2013-01-01

    Moths depend on olfactory cues such as sex pheromones to find and recognize mating partners. Pheromone receptors (PRs) and Pheromone binding proteins (PBPs) are thought to be associated with olfactory signal transduction of pheromonal compounds in peripheral olfactory reception. Here six candidate pheromone receptor genes in the diamondback moth, Plutella xyllostella were identified and cloned. All of the six candidate PR genes display male-biased expression, which is a typical characteristic of pheromone receptors. In the Xenopus-based functional study and in situ hybridization, PxylOR4 is defined as another pheromone receptor in addition to the previously characterized PxylOR1. In the study of interaction between PRs and PBPs, PxylPBPs could increase the sensitivity of the complex expressing oocyte cells to the ligand pheromone component while decreasing the sensitivity to pheromone analogs. We deduce that activating pheromone receptors in olfactory receptor neurons requires some role of PBPs to pheromone/PBP complex. If the chemical signal is not the pheromone component, but instead, a pheromone analog with a similar structure, the complex would have a decreased ability to activate downstream pheromone receptors.

  9. Identification and Characterization of Pheromone Receptors and Interplay between Receptors and Pheromone Binding Proteins in the Diamondback Moth, Plutella xyllostella

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Mengjing; Liu, Yang; Walker, William B.; Liu, Chengcheng; Lin, Kejian; Gu, Shaohua; Zhang, Yongjun; Zhou, Jingjiang; Wang, Guirong

    2013-01-01

    Moths depend on olfactory cues such as sex pheromones to find and recognize mating partners. Pheromone receptors (PRs) and Pheromone binding proteins (PBPs) are thought to be associated with olfactory signal transduction of pheromonal compounds in peripheral olfactory reception. Here six candidate pheromone receptor genes in the diamondback moth, Plutella xyllostella were identified and cloned. All of the six candidate PR genes display male-biased expression, which is a typical characteristic of pheromone receptors. In the Xenopus-based functional study and in situ hybridization, PxylOR4 is defined as another pheromone receptor in addition to the previously characterized PxylOR1. In the study of interaction between PRs and PBPs, PxylPBPs could increase the sensitivity of the complex expressing oocyte cells to the ligand pheromone component while decreasing the sensitivity to pheromone analogs. We deduce that activating pheromone receptors in olfactory receptor neurons requires some role of PBPs to pheromone/PBP complex. If the chemical signal is not the pheromone component, but instead, a pheromone analog with a similar structure, the complex would have a decreased ability to activate downstream pheromone receptors. PMID:23626773

  10. Finding and analyzing plant metabolic gene clusters.

    PubMed

    Osbourn, Anne; Papadopoulou, Kalliopi K; Qi, Xiaoquan; Field, Ben; Wegel, Eva

    2012-01-01

    Plants produce an array of diverse secondary metabolites with important ecological functions, providing protection against pests, diseases, and abiotic stresses. Secondary metabolites are also a rich source of bioactive compounds for drug and agrochemical development. Despite the importance of these compounds, the metabolic diversity of plants remains largely unexploited, primarily due to the problems associated with mining large and complex genomes. It has recently emerged that genes for the synthesis of multiple major classes of plant-derived secondary metabolites (benzoxinones, diterpenes, triterpenes, and cyanogenic glycosides) are organized in clusters reminiscent of the metabolic gene clusters found in microbes. Many more secondary metabolic clusters are likely to emerge as the body of sequence information available for plants continues to grow, accelerated by high-throughput sequencing. Here, we describe approaches for the identification of secondary metabolic gene clusters in plants through forward and reverse genetics, map-based cloning, and genome mining and give examples of methods used for the analysis and functional confirmation of new clusters. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. POG1, a novel yeast gene, promotes recovery from pheromone arrest via the G1 cyclin CLN2.

    PubMed Central

    Leza, M A; Elion, E A

    1999-01-01

    In the absence of a successful mating, pheromone-arrested Saccharomyces cerevisiae cells reenter the mitotic cycle through a recovery process that involves downregulation of the mating mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) cascade. We have isolated a novel gene, POG1, whose promotion of recovery parallels that of the MAPK phosphatase Msg5. POG1 confers alpha-factor resistance when overexpressed and enhances alpha-factor sensitivity when deleted in the background of an msg5 mutant. Overexpression of POG1 inhibits alpha-factor-induced G1 arrest and transcriptional repression of the CLN1 and CLN2 genes. The block in transcriptional repression occurs at SCB/MCB promoter elements by a mechanism that requires Bck1 but not Cln3. Genetic tests strongly argue that POG1 promotes recovery through upregulation of the CLN2 gene and that the resulting Cln2 protein promotes recovery primarily through an effect on Ste20, an activator of the mating MAPK cascade. A pog1 cln3 double mutant displays synthetic mutant phenotypes shared by cell-wall integrity and actin cytoskeleton mutants, with no synthetic defect in the expression of CLN1 or CLN2. These and other results suggest that POG1 may regulate additional genes during vegetative growth and recovery. PMID:9927449

  12. Clustering Genes of Common Evolutionary History.

    PubMed

    Gori, Kevin; Suchan, Tomasz; Alvarez, Nadir; Goldman, Nick; Dessimoz, Christophe

    2016-06-01

    Phylogenetic inference can potentially result in a more accurate tree using data from multiple loci. However, if the loci are incongruent-due to events such as incomplete lineage sorting or horizontal gene transfer-it can be misleading to infer a single tree. To address this, many previous contributions have taken a mechanistic approach, by modeling specific processes. Alternatively, one can cluster loci without assuming how these incongruencies might arise. Such "process-agnostic" approaches typically infer a tree for each locus and cluster these. There are, however, many possible combinations of tree distance and clustering methods; their comparative performance in the context of tree incongruence is largely unknown. Furthermore, because standard model selection criteria such as AIC cannot be applied to problems with a variable number of topologies, the issue of inferring the optimal number of clusters is poorly understood. Here, we perform a large-scale simulation study of phylogenetic distances and clustering methods to infer loci of common evolutionary history. We observe that the best-performing combinations are distances accounting for branch lengths followed by spectral clustering or Ward's method. We also introduce two statistical tests to infer the optimal number of clusters and show that they strongly outperform the silhouette criterion, a general-purpose heuristic. We illustrate the usefulness of the approach by 1) identifying errors in a previous phylogenetic analysis of yeast species and 2) identifying topological incongruence among newly sequenced loci of the globeflower fly genus Chiastocheta We release treeCl, a new program to cluster genes of common evolutionary history (http://git.io/treeCl). © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  13. The Schizosaccharomyces pombe mam2 gene encodes a putative pheromone receptor which has a significant homology with the Saccharomyces cerevisiae Ste2 protein.

    PubMed Central

    Kitamura, K; Shimoda, C

    1991-01-01

    The fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe has two mating-types, h+ (P) and h- (M). The mam2 mutant exhibits an h(-)-specific sterile phenotype. Nucleotide sequencing of the mam2 gene isolated from an S. pombe genomic library revealed an open reading frame composed of 348 amino acids. The deduced mam2 product is a hydrophobic protein of 39 kDa that has significant sequence similarity (26.3% for identical amino acids) with the transmembrane domains of the Saccharomyces cerevisiae STE2 product, the alpha-pheromone receptor. Hydropathicity analysis suggests that the Mam2 protein contains seven possible membrane-spanning domains and a carboxy-terminal hydrophilic region. The mam2 gene was disrupted and found to be non-essential for growth. An h- haploid strain harbouring this disrupted null allele failed to respond to the pheromone of h+ cells, P-factor. These observations imply that the mam2 gene encodes a receptor for P-factor. Transcription of mam2 was induced only when strains containing functional mat1-M allele were cultured under conditions of nitrogen starvation. The mam2 gene was also transcribed in h+/h- diploid strains. The fact that the map1/mam2 homozygous diploid cells are incapable of sporulation implies that the pheromone signalling system is necessary for sporulation in diploid cells. Images PMID:1657593

  14. ORA1, a Zebrafish Olfactory Receptor Ancestral to All Mammalian V1R Genes, Recognizes 4-Hydroxyphenylacetic Acid, a Putative Reproductive Pheromone

    PubMed Central

    Behrens, Maik; Frank, Oliver; Rawel, Harshadrai; Ahuja, Gaurav; Potting, Christoph; Hofmann, Thomas; Meyerhof, Wolfgang; Korsching, Sigrun

    2014-01-01

    The teleost v1r-related ora genes are a small, highly conserved olfactory receptor gene family of only six genes, whose direct orthologues can be identified in lineages as far as that of cartilaginous fish. However, no ligands for fish olfactory receptor class A related genes (ORA) had been uncovered so far. Here we have deorphanized the ORA1 receptor using heterologous expression and calcium imaging. We report that zebrafish ORA1 recognizes with high specificity and sensitivity 4-hydroxyphenylacetic acid. The carboxyl group of this compound is required in a particular distance from the aromatic ring, whereas the hydroxyl group in the para-position is not essential, but strongly enhances the binding efficacy. Low concentrations of 4-hydroxyphenylacetic acid elicit increases in oviposition frequency in zebrafish mating pairs. This effect is abolished by naris closure. We hypothesize that 4-hydroxyphenylacetic acid might function as a pheromone for reproductive behavior in zebrafish. ORA1 is ancestral to mammalian V1Rs, and its putative function as pheromone receptor is reminiscent of the role of several mammalian V1Rs as pheromone receptors. PMID:24831010

  15. Combined clustering models for the analysis of gene expression

    SciTech Connect

    Angelova, M. Ellman, J.

    2010-02-15

    Clustering has become one of the fundamental tools for analyzing gene expression and producing gene classifications. Clustering models enable finding patterns of similarity in order to understand gene function, gene regulation, cellular processes and sub-types of cells. The clustering results however have to be combined with sequence data or knowledge about gene functionality in order to make biologically meaningful conclusions. In this work, we explore a new model that integrates gene expression with sequence or text information.

  16. What is a pheromone? Mammalian pheromones reconsidered.

    PubMed

    Stowers, Lisa; Marton, Tobias F

    2005-06-02

    Pheromone communication is a two-component system: signaling pheromones and receiving sensory neurons. Currently, pheromones remain enigmatic bioactive compounds, as only a few have been identified, but classical bioassays have suggested that they are nonvolatile, activate vomeronasal sensory neurons, and regulate innate social behaviors and neuroendocrine release. Recent discoveries of potential pheromones reveal that they may be more structurally and functionally diverse than previously defined.

  17. Ant Trail Pheromone Biosynthesis Is Triggered by a Neuropeptide Hormone

    PubMed Central

    Choi, Man-Yeon; Vander Meer, Robert K.

    2012-01-01

    Our understanding of insect chemical communication including pheromone identification, synthesis, and their role in behavior has advanced tremendously over the last half-century. However, endocrine regulation of pheromone biosynthesis has progressed slowly due to the complexity of direct and/or indirect hormonal activation of the biosynthetic cascades resulting in insect pheromones. Over 20 years ago, a neurohormone, pheromone biosynthesis activating neuropeptide (PBAN) was identified that stimulated sex pheromone biosynthesis in a lepidopteran moth. Since then, the physiological role, target site, and signal transduction of PBAN has become well understood for sex pheromone biosynthesis in moths. Despite that PBAN-like peptides (∼200) have been identified from various insect Orders, their role in pheromone regulation had not expanded to the other insect groups except for Lepidoptera. Here, we report that trail pheromone biosynthesis in the Dufour's gland (DG) of the fire ant, Solenopsis invicta, is regulated by PBAN. RNAi knock down of PBAN gene (in subesophageal ganglia) or PBAN receptor gene (in DG) expression inhibited trail pheromone biosynthesis. Reduced trail pheromone was documented analytically and through a behavioral bioassay. Extension of PBAN's role in pheromone biosynthesis to a new target insect, mode of action, and behavioral function will renew research efforts on the involvement of PBAN in pheromone biosynthesis in Insecta. PMID:23226278

  18. Comparative Genomics Uncovers Unique Gene Turnover and Evolutionary Rates in a Gene Family Involved in the Detection of Insect Cuticular Pheromones

    PubMed Central

    Torres-Oliva, Montserrat; Almeida, Francisca C.; Sánchez-Gracia, Alejandro; Rozas, Julio

    2016-01-01

    Chemoreception is an essential process for the survival and reproduction of animals. Many of the proteins responsible for recognizing and transmitting chemical stimuli in insects are encoded by genes that are members of moderately sized multigene families. The members of the CheB family are specialized in gustatory-mediated detection of long-chain hydrocarbon pheromones in Drosophila melanogaster and play a central role in triggering and modulating mating behavior in this species. Here, we present a comprehensive comparative genomic analysis of the CheB family across 12 species of the Drosophila genus. We have identified a total of 102 new CheB genes in the genomes of these species, including a functionally divergent member previously uncharacterized in D. melanogaster. We found that, despite its relatively small repertory size, the CheB family has undergone multiple gain and loss events and various episodes of diversifying selection during the divergence of the surveyed species. Present estimates of gene turnover and coding sequence substitution rates show that this family is evolving faster than any known Drosophila chemosensory family. To date, only other insect gustatory-related genes among these families had shown evolutionary dynamics close to those observed in CheBs. Our findings reveal the high adaptive potential of molecular components of the gustatory system in insects and anticipate a key role of genes involved in this sensory modality in species adaptation and diversification.

  19. Transcriptional activation by the sexual pheromone and wounding: a new gene family from Volvox encoding modular proteins with (hydroxy)proline-rich and metalloproteinase homology domains.

    PubMed

    Hallmann, A; Amon, P; Godl, K; Heitzer, M; Sumper, M

    2001-06-01

    The green alga Volvox represents the simplest kind of multicellular organism: it is composed of only two cell types, somatic and reproductive, making it suitable as a model system. The sexual development of males and females of Volvox carteri is triggered by a sex-inducing pheromone at a concentration of < 10-16 M. Early biochemical responses to the pheromone involve structural modifications within the extracellular matrix (ECM). By differential screenings of cDNA libraries made from mRNAs of pheromone-treated Volvox, four novel genes were identified that encode four closely related Volvox metalloproteinases that we use to define a new protein family, the VMPs. The existence of several features common to matrix glycoproteins, such as signal peptides, a (hydroxy)proline content of 12-25%, and Ser(Pro)2-4 repeats, suggest an extracellular localization of the VMPs within the ECM. Synthesis of VMP cDNAs is triggered not only by the sex-inducing pheromone, but also by wounding, and is restricted to the somatic cell type. Sequence comparisons suggest that the VMPs are members of the MB clan of zinc-dependent matrix metalloproteinases, although the putative zinc binding site of all VMPs is QEXXHXXGXXH rather than HEXXHXXGXXH. The presence of glutamine instead of histidine in the zinc binding motif suggests a novel family, or even clan, of peptidases. Like the matrixin family of human collagenases, Volvox VMPs exhibit a modular structure: they possess a metalloproteinase homology domain and a (hydroxy)proline-rich domain, and one of them, VMP4, also has two additional domains. Metalloproteinases seem to be crucial for biochemical modifications of the ECM during development or after wounding in the lower eukaryote Volvox with only two cell types, just as in higher organisms.

  20. Penicillium roqueforti PR toxin gene cluster characterization.

    PubMed

    Hidalgo, Pedro I; Poirier, Elisabeth; Ullán, Ricardo V; Piqueras, Justine; Meslet-Cladière, Laurence; Coton, Emmanuel; Coton, Monika

    2017-03-01

    PR toxin is a well-known isoprenoid mycotoxin almost solely produced by Penicillium roqueforti after growth on food or animal feed. This mycotoxin has been described as the most toxic produced by this species. In this study, an in silico analysis allowed identifying for the first time a 22.4-kb biosynthetic gene cluster involved in PR toxin biosynthesis in P. roqueforti. The pathway contains 11 open reading frames encoding for ten putative proteins including the major fungal terpene cyclase, aristolochene synthase, involved in the first farnesyl-diphosphate cyclization step as well as an oxidoreductase, an oxidase, two P450 monooxygenases, a transferase, and two dehydrogenase enzymes. Gene silencing was used to study three genes (ORF5, ORF6, and ORF8 encoding for an acetyltransferase and two P450 monooxygenases, respectively) and resulted in 20 to 40% PR toxin production reductions in all transformants proving the involvement of these genes and the corresponding enzyme activities in PR toxin biosynthesis. According to the considered silenced gene target, eremofortin A and B productions were also affected suggesting their involvement as biosynthetic intermediates in this pathway. A PR toxin biosynthesis pathway is proposed based on the most recent and available data.

  1. Evolution of Hox gene clusters in deuterostomes

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Hox genes, with their similar roles in animals as evolutionarily distant as humans and flies, have fascinated biologists since their discovery nearly 30 years ago. During the last two decades, reports on Hox genes from a still growing number of eumetazoan species have increased our knowledge on the Hox gene contents of a wide range of animal groups. In this review, we summarize the current Hox inventory among deuterostomes, not only in the well-known teleosts and tetrapods, but also in the earlier vertebrate and invertebrate groups. We draw an updated picture of the ancestral repertoires of the different lineages, a sort of “genome Hox bar-code” for most clades. This scenario allows us to infer differential gene or cluster losses and gains that occurred during deuterostome evolution, which might be causally linked to the morphological changes that led to these widely diverse animal taxa. Finally, we focus on the challenging family of posterior Hox genes, which probably originated through independent tandem duplication events at the origin of each of the ambulacrarian, cephalochordate and vertebrate/urochordate lineages. PMID:23819519

  2. Tumor clustering using nonnegative matrix factorization with gene selection.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Chun-Hou; Huang, De-Shuang; Zhang, Lei; Kong, Xiang-Zhen

    2009-07-01

    Tumor clustering is becoming a powerful method in cancer class discovery. Nonnegative matrix factorization (NMF) has shown advantages over other conventional clustering techniques. Nonetheless, there is still considerable room for improving the performance of NMF. To this end, in this paper, gene selection and explicitly enforcing sparseness are introduced into the factorization process. Particularly, independent component analysis is employed to select a subset of genes so that the effect of irrelevant or noisy genes can be reduced. The NMF and its extensions, sparse NMF and NMF with sparseness constraint, are then used for tumor clustering on the selected genes. A series of elaborate experiments are performed by varying the number of clusters and the number of selected genes to evaluate the cooperation between different gene selection settings and NMF-based clustering. Finally, the experiments on three representative gene expression datasets demonstrated that the proposed scheme can achieve better clustering results.

  3. The rise of operon-like gene clusters in plants.

    PubMed

    Boycheva, Svetlana; Daviet, Laurent; Wolfender, Jean-Luc; Fitzpatrick, Teresa B

    2014-07-01

    Gene clusters are common features of prokaryotic genomes also present in eukaryotes. Most clustered genes known are involved in the biosynthesis of secondary metabolites. Although horizontal gene transfer is a primary source of prokaryotic gene cluster (operon) formation and has been reported to occur in eukaryotes, the predominant source of cluster formation in eukaryotes appears to arise de novo or through gene duplication followed by neo- and sub-functionalization or translocation. Here we aim to provide an overview of the current knowledge and open questions related to plant gene cluster functioning, assembly, and regulation. We also present potential research approaches and point out the benefits of a better understanding of gene clusters in plants for both fundamental and applied plant science. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Formation of plant metabolic gene clusters within dynamic chromosomal regions

    PubMed Central

    Field, Ben; Fiston-Lavier, Anna-Sophie; Kemen, Ariane; Geisler, Katrin; Quesneville, Hadi; Osbourn, Anne E.

    2011-01-01

    In bacteria, genes with related functions often are grouped together in operons and are cotranscribed as a single polycistronic mRNA. In eukaryotes, functionally related genes generally are scattered across the genome. Notable exceptions include gene clusters for catabolic pathways in yeast, synthesis of secondary metabolites in filamentous fungi, and the major histocompatibility complex in animals. Until quite recently it was thought that gene clusters in plants were restricted to tandem duplicates (for example, arrays of leucine-rich repeat disease-resistance genes). However, operon-like clusters of coregulated nonhomologous genes are an emerging theme in plant biology, where they may be involved in the synthesis of certain defense compounds. These clusters are unlikely to have arisen by horizontal gene transfer, and the mechanisms behind their formation are poorly understood. Previously in thale cress (Arabidopsis thaliana) we identified an operon-like gene cluster that is required for the synthesis and modification of the triterpene thalianol. Here we characterize a second operon-like triterpene cluster (the marneral cluster) from A. thaliana, compare the features of these two clusters, and investigate the evolutionary events that have led to cluster formation. We conclude that common mechanisms are likely to underlie the assembly and control of operon-like gene clusters in plants. PMID:21876149

  5. Valinomycin biosynthetic gene cluster in Streptomyces: conservation, ecology and evolution.

    PubMed

    Matter, Andrea M; Hoot, Sara B; Anderson, Patrick D; Neves, Susana S; Cheng, Yi-Qiang

    2009-09-29

    Many Streptomyces strains are known to produce valinomycin (VLM) antibiotic and the VLM biosynthetic gene cluster (vlm) has been characterized in two independent isolates. Here we report the phylogenetic relationships of these strains using both parsimony and likelihood methods, and discuss whether the vlm gene cluster shows evidence of horizontal transmission common in natural product biosynthetic genes. Eight Streptomyces strains from around the world were obtained and sequenced for three regions of the two large nonribosomal peptide synthetase genes (vlm1 and vlm2) involved in VLM biosynthesis. The DNA sequences representing the vlm gene cluster are highly conserved among all eight environmental strains. The geographic distribution pattern of these strains and the strict congruence between the trees of the two vlm genes and the housekeeping genes, 16S rDNA and trpB, suggest vertical transmission of the vlm gene cluster in Streptomyces with no evidence of horizontal gene transfer. We also explored the relationship of the sequence of vlm genes to that of the cereulide biosynthetic genes (ces) found in Bacillus cereus and found them highly divergent from each other at DNA level (genetic distance values >or= 95.6%). It is possible that the vlm gene cluster and the ces gene cluster may share a relatively distant common ancestor but these two gene clusters have since evolved independently.

  6. Diversity of Carotenoid Synthesis Gene Clusters from Environmental Enterobacteriaceae Strains

    PubMed Central

    Sedkova, Natalia; Tao, Luan; Rouvière, Pierre E.; Cheng, Qiong

    2005-01-01

    Eight Enterobacteriaceae strains that produce zeaxanthin and derivatives of this compound were isolated from a variety of environmental samples. Phylogenetic analysis showed that these strains grouped with different clusters of Erwinia type strains. Four strains representing the phylogenetic diversity were chosen for further characterization, which revealed their genetic diversity as well as their biochemical diversity. The carotenoid synthesis gene clusters cloned from the four strains had three different gene organizations. Two of the gene clusters, those from strains DC416 and DC260, had the classical organization crtEXYIBZ; the gene cluster from DC413 had the rare organization crtE-idi-XYIBZ; and the gene cluster from DC404 had the unique organization crtE-idi-YIBZ. Besides the diversity in genetic organization, these genes also exhibited considerable sequence diversity. On average, they exhibited 60 to 70% identity with each other, as well as with the corresponding genes of the Pantoea type strains. The four different clusters were individually expressed in Escherichia coli, and the two idi-containing clusters gave more than fivefold-higher carotenoid titers than the two clusters lacking idi. Expression of the crtEYIB genes with and without idi confirmed the effect of increasing carotenoid titer by the type II idi gene linked with the carotenoid synthesis gene clusters. PMID:16332796

  7. Inferring the Recent Duplication History of a Gene Cluster

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Song, Giltae; Zhang, Louxin; Vinař, Tomáš; Miller, Webb

    Much important evolutionary activity occurs in gene clusters, where a copy of a gene may be free to evolve new functions. Computational methods to extract evolutionary information from sequence data for such clusters are currently imperfect, in part because accurate sequence data are often lacking in these genomic regions, making the existing methods difficult to apply. We describe a new method for reconstructing the recent evolutionary history of gene clusters. The method’s performance is evaluated on simulated data and on actual human gene clusters.

  8. Computing gene expression data with a knowledge-based gene clustering approach.

    PubMed

    Rosa, Bruce A; Oh, Sookyung; Montgomery, Beronda L; Chen, Jin; Qin, Wensheng

    2010-01-01

    Computational analysis methods for gene expression data gathered in microarray experiments can be used to identify the functions of previously unstudied genes. While obtaining the expression data is not a difficult task, interpreting and extracting the information from the datasets is challenging. In this study, a knowledge-based approach which identifies and saves important functional genes before filtering based on variability and fold change differences was utilized to study light regulation. Two clustering methods were used to cluster the filtered datasets, and clusters containing a key light regulatory gene were located. The common genes to both of these clusters were identified, and the genes in the common cluster were ranked based on their coexpression to the key gene. This process was repeated for 11 key genes in 3 treatment combinations. The initial filtering method reduced the dataset size from 22,814 probes to an average of 1134 genes, and the resulting common cluster lists contained an average of only 14 genes. These common cluster lists scored higher gene enrichment scores than two individual clustering methods. In addition, the filtering method increased the proportion of light responsive genes in the dataset from 1.8% to 15.2%, and the cluster lists increased this proportion to 18.4%. The relatively short length of these common cluster lists compared to gene groups generated through typical clustering methods or coexpression networks narrows the search for novel functional genes while increasing the likelihood that they are biologically relevant.

  9. A Nomadic Subtelomeric Disease Resistance Gene Cluster in Common Bean

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    The B4 resistance (R)-gene cluster, located in subtelomeric region of chromosome 4, is one of the largest clusters known in common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris, Pv). We sequenced 650 kb spanning this locus and annotated 97 genes, 26 of which correspond to Coiled-coil-Nucleotide-Binding-Site-Leucine-Rich...

  10. Simultaneous Clustering of Multiple Gene Expression and Physical Interaction Datasets

    PubMed Central

    Narayanan, Manikandan; Vetta, Adrian; Schadt, Eric E.; Zhu, Jun

    2010-01-01

    Many genome-wide datasets are routinely generated to study different aspects of biological systems, but integrating them to obtain a coherent view of the underlying biology remains a challenge. We propose simultaneous clustering of multiple networks as a framework to integrate large-scale datasets on the interactions among and activities of cellular components. Specifically, we develop an algorithm JointCluster that finds sets of genes that cluster well in multiple networks of interest, such as coexpression networks summarizing correlations among the expression profiles of genes and physical networks describing protein-protein and protein-DNA interactions among genes or gene-products. Our algorithm provides an efficient solution to a well-defined problem of jointly clustering networks, using techniques that permit certain theoretical guarantees on the quality of the detected clustering relative to the optimal clustering. These guarantees coupled with an effective scaling heuristic and the flexibility to handle multiple heterogeneous networks make our method JointCluster an advance over earlier approaches. Simulation results showed JointCluster to be more robust than alternate methods in recovering clusters implanted in networks with high false positive rates. In systematic evaluation of JointCluster and some earlier approaches for combined analysis of the yeast physical network and two gene expression datasets under glucose and ethanol growth conditions, JointCluster discovers clusters that are more consistently enriched for various reference classes capturing different aspects of yeast biology or yield better coverage of the analysed genes. These robust clusters, which are supported across multiple genomic datasets and diverse reference classes, agree with known biology of yeast under these growth conditions, elucidate the genetic control of coordinated transcription, and enable functional predictions for a number of uncharacterized genes. PMID:20419151

  11. Efficient Computation of Approximate Gene Clusters Based on Reference Occurrences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jahn, Katharina

    Whole genome comparison based on the analysis of gene cluster conservation has become a popular approach in comparative genomics. While gene order and gene content as a whole randomize over time, it is observed that certain groups of genes which are often functionally related remain co-located across species. However, the conservation is usually not perfect which turns the identification of these structures, often referred to as approximate gene clusters, into a challenging task. In this paper, we present a polynomial time algorithm that computes approximate gene clusters based on reference occurrences. We show that our approach yields highly comparable results to a more general approach and allows for approximate gene cluster detection in parameter ranges currently not feasible for non-reference based approaches.

  12. Pheromones cause disease: pheromone/odourant transduction.

    PubMed

    Nicholson, B

    2001-09-01

    This paper compares two models of the sense of smell and demonstrates that the new model has advantages over the accepted model with implications for medical research. The accepted transduction model had an odourant or pheromone contacting an aqueous sensory lymph then movement through it to a receptor membrane beneath. If the odourant or pheromone were non-soluble, the odourant/pheromone supposedly would be bound to a soluble protein in the lymph to be carried across. Thus, an odourant/carrier protein complex physically moved through the receptor lymph/mucus to interact with a membrane bound receptor. After the membranous receptor interaction, the molecule would be deactivated and any odourant/pheromone-binding protein recycled. This new electrical chemosensory model being proposed here has the pheromone or other odourant generating an electrical event in the extra-cellular mucus. Before the pheromone arrives, proteins of the 'carrier class' dissolved in the receptor mucus slowly and continuously sequester ions. A sensed pheromonal chemical species sorbs to the mucus and immediately binds to the now ion-holding dissolved protein. The binding of the pheromone to the protein causes a measurable conformational change in the pheromone/odourant-binding protein, desequestering ions. Releasing the bound ions changes the potential differences across a nearby super-sensitive dendritic membrane resulting in dendrite excitation. Pheromones will be implicated in the aetiology of the infectious, psychiatric and autoimmune diseases. This is the third article in a series of twelve to systematically explore this contention (see references 1-9). Copyright 2001 Harcourt Publishers Ltd.

  13. Regulation of clustered protocadherin genes in individual neurons.

    PubMed

    Hirayama, Teruyoshi; Yagi, Takeshi

    2017-09-01

    Individual neurons are basic functional units in the complex system of the brain. One aspect of neuronal individuality is generated by stochastic and combinatorial expression of diverse clustered protocadherins (Pcdhs), encoded by the Pcdha, Pcdhb, and Pcdhg gene clusters, that are critical for several aspects of neural circuit formation. Each clustered Pcdh gene has its own promoter containing conserved sequences and is transcribed by a promoter choice mechanism involving interaction between the promoter and enhancers. A CTCF/Cohesin complex induces this interaction by configuration of DNA-looping in the chromatin structure. At the same time, the semi-stochastic expression of clustered Pcdh genes is regulated in individual neurons by DNA methylation: the methyltransferase Dnmt3b regulates methylation state of individual clustered Pcdh genes during early embryonic stages prior to the establishment of neural stem cells. Several other factors, including Smchd1, also contribute to the regulation of clustered Pcdh gene expression. In addition, psychiatric diseases and early life experiences of individuals can influence expression of clustered Pcdh genes in the brain, through epigenetic alterations. Clustered Pcdh gene expression is thus a significant and highly regulated step in establishing neuronal individuality and generating functional neural circuits in the brain. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  14. Prokaryotic Gene Clusters: A Rich Toolbox for Synthetic Biology

    PubMed Central

    Fischbach, Michael; Voigt, Christopher A.

    2014-01-01

    Bacteria construct elaborate nanostructures, obtain nutrients and energy from diverse sources, synthesize complex molecules, and implement signal processing to react to their environment. These complex phenotypes require the coordinated action of multiple genes, which are often encoded in a contiguous region of the genome, referred to as a gene cluster. Gene clusters sometimes contain all of the genes necessary and sufficient for a particular function. As an evolutionary mechanism, gene clusters facilitate the horizontal transfer of the complete function between species. Here, we review recent work on a number of clusters whose functions are relevant to biotechnology. Engineering these clusters has been hindered by their regulatory complexity, the need to balance the expression of many genes, and a lack of tools to design and manipulate DNA at this scale. Advances in synthetic biology will enable the large-scale bottom-up engineering of the clusters to optimize their functions, wake up cryptic clusters, or to transfer them between organisms. Understanding and manipulating gene clusters will move towards an era of genome engineering, where multiple functions can be “mixed-and-matched” to create a designer organism. PMID:21154668

  15. Remodelling of a homeobox gene cluster by multiple independent gene reunions in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Chan, Carolus; Jayasekera, Suvini; Kao, Bryant; Páramo, Moisés; von Grotthuss, Marcin; Ranz, José M

    2015-03-05

    Genome clustering of homeobox genes is often thought to reflect arrangements of tandem gene duplicates maintained by advantageous coordinated gene regulation. Here we analyse the chromosomal organization of the NK homeobox genes, presumed to be part of a single cluster in the Bilaterian ancestor, across 20 arthropods. We find that the ProtoNK cluster was extensively fragmented in some lineages, showing that NK clustering in Drosophila species does not reflect selectively maintained gene arrangements. More importantly, the arrangement of NK and neighbouring genes across the phylogeny supports that, in two instances within the Drosophila genus, some cluster remnants became reunited via large-scale chromosomal rearrangements. Simulated scenarios of chromosome evolution indicate that these reunion events are unlikely unless the genome neighbourhoods harbouring the participating genes tend to colocalize in the nucleus. Our results underscore how mechanisms other than tandem gene duplication can result in paralogous gene clustering during genome evolution.

  16. Aspergillus nidulans mutants defective in stc gene cluster regulation.

    PubMed Central

    Butchko, R A; Adams, T H; Keller, N P

    1999-01-01

    The genes involved in the biosynthesis of sterigmatocystin (ST), a toxic secondary metabolite produced by Aspergillus nidulans and an aflatoxin (AF) precursor in other Aspergillus spp., are clustered on chromosome IV of A. nidulans. The sterigmatocystin gene cluster (stc gene cluster) is regulated by the pathway-specific transcription factor aflR. The function of aflR appears to be conserved between ST- and AF-producing aspergilli, as are most of the other genes in the cluster. We describe a novel screen for detecting mutants defective in stc gene cluster activity by use of a genetic block early in the ST biosynthetic pathway that results in the accumulation of the first stable intermediate, norsolorinic acid (NOR), an orange-colored compound visible with the unaided eye. We have mutagenized this NOR-accumulating strain and have isolated 176 Nor(-) mutants, 83 of which appear to be wild type in growth and development. Sixty of these 83 mutations are linked to the stc gene cluster and are likely defects in aflR or known stc biosynthetic genes. Of the 23 mutations not linked to the stc gene cluster, 3 prevent accumulation of NOR due to the loss of aflR expression. PMID:10511551

  17. Bioinformatics Prediction of Polyketide Synthase Gene Clusters from Mycosphaerella fijiensis

    PubMed Central

    Noar, Roslyn D.; Daub, Margaret E.

    2016-01-01

    Mycosphaerella fijiensis, causal agent of black Sigatoka disease of banana, is a Dothideomycete fungus closely related to fungi that produce polyketides important for plant pathogenicity. We utilized the M. fijiensis genome sequence to predict PKS genes and their gene clusters and make bioinformatics predictions about the types of compounds produced by these clusters. Eight PKS gene clusters were identified in the M. fijiensis genome, placing M. fijiensis into the 23rd percentile for the number of PKS genes compared to other Dothideomycetes. Analysis of the PKS domains identified three of the PKS enzymes as non-reducing and two as highly reducing. Gene clusters contained types of genes frequently found in PKS clusters including genes encoding transporters, oxidoreductases, methyltransferases, and non-ribosomal peptide synthases. Phylogenetic analysis identified a putative PKS cluster encoding melanin biosynthesis. None of the other clusters were closely aligned with genes encoding known polyketides, however three of the PKS genes fell into clades with clusters encoding alternapyrone, fumonisin, and solanapyrone produced by Alternaria and Fusarium species. A search for homologs among available genomic sequences from 103 Dothideomycetes identified close homologs (>80% similarity) for six of the PKS sequences. One of the PKS sequences was not similar (< 60% similarity) to sequences in any of the 103 genomes, suggesting that it encodes a unique compound. Comparison of the M. fijiensis PKS sequences with those of two other banana pathogens, M. musicola and M. eumusae, showed that these two species have close homologs to five of the M. fijiensis PKS sequences, but three others were not found in either species. RT-PCR and RNA-Seq analysis showed that the melanin PKS cluster was down-regulated in infected banana as compared to growth in culture. Three other clusters, however were strongly upregulated during disease development in banana, suggesting that they may encode

  18. Mining Bacterial Genomes for Secondary Metabolite Gene Clusters.

    PubMed

    Adamek, Martina; Spohn, Marius; Stegmann, Evi; Ziemert, Nadine

    2017-01-01

    With the emergence of bacterial resistance against frequently used antibiotics, novel antibacterial compounds are urgently needed. Traditional bioactivity-guided drug discovery strategies involve laborious screening efforts and display high rediscovery rates. With the progress in next generation sequencing methods and the knowledge that the majority of antibiotics in clinical use are produced as secondary metabolites by bacteria, mining bacterial genomes for secondary metabolites with antimicrobial activity is a promising approach, which can guide a more time and cost-effective identification of novel compounds. However, what sounds easy to accomplish, comes with several challenges. To date, several tools for the prediction of secondary metabolite gene clusters are available, some of which are based on the detection of signature genes, while others are searching for specific patterns in gene content or regulation.Apart from the mere identification of gene clusters, several other factors such as determining cluster boundaries and assessing the novelty of the detected cluster are important. For this purpose, comparison of the predicted secondary metabolite genes with different cluster and compound databases is necessary. Furthermore, it is advisable to classify detected clusters into gene cluster families. So far, there is no standardized procedure for genome mining; however, different approaches to overcome all of these challenges exist and are addressed in this chapter. We give practical guidance on the workflow for secondary metabolite gene cluster identification, which includes the determination of gene cluster boundaries, addresses problems occurring with the use of draft genomes, and gives an outlook on the different methods for gene cluster classification. Based on comprehensible examples a protocol is set, which should enable the readers to mine their own genome data for interesting secondary metabolites.

  19. Bioinformatics Prediction of Polyketide Synthase Gene Clusters from Mycosphaerella fijiensis.

    PubMed

    Noar, Roslyn D; Daub, Margaret E

    2016-01-01

    Mycosphaerella fijiensis, causal agent of black Sigatoka disease of banana, is a Dothideomycete fungus closely related to fungi that produce polyketides important for plant pathogenicity. We utilized the M. fijiensis genome sequence to predict PKS genes and their gene clusters and make bioinformatics predictions about the types of compounds produced by these clusters. Eight PKS gene clusters were identified in the M. fijiensis genome, placing M. fijiensis into the 23rd percentile for the number of PKS genes compared to other Dothideomycetes. Analysis of the PKS domains identified three of the PKS enzymes as non-reducing and two as highly reducing. Gene clusters contained types of genes frequently found in PKS clusters including genes encoding transporters, oxidoreductases, methyltransferases, and non-ribosomal peptide synthases. Phylogenetic analysis identified a putative PKS cluster encoding melanin biosynthesis. None of the other clusters were closely aligned with genes encoding known polyketides, however three of the PKS genes fell into clades with clusters encoding alternapyrone, fumonisin, and solanapyrone produced by Alternaria and Fusarium species. A search for homologs among available genomic sequences from 103 Dothideomycetes identified close homologs (>80% similarity) for six of the PKS sequences. One of the PKS sequences was not similar (< 60% similarity) to sequences in any of the 103 genomes, suggesting that it encodes a unique compound. Comparison of the M. fijiensis PKS sequences with those of two other banana pathogens, M. musicola and M. eumusae, showed that these two species have close homologs to five of the M. fijiensis PKS sequences, but three others were not found in either species. RT-PCR and RNA-Seq analysis showed that the melanin PKS cluster was down-regulated in infected banana as compared to growth in culture. Three other clusters, however were strongly upregulated during disease development in banana, suggesting that they may encode

  20. Hierarchical Dirichlet process model for gene expression clustering

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Clustering is an important data processing tool for interpreting microarray data and genomic network inference. In this article, we propose a clustering algorithm based on the hierarchical Dirichlet processes (HDP). The HDP clustering introduces a hierarchical structure in the statistical model which captures the hierarchical features prevalent in biological data such as the gene express data. We develop a Gibbs sampling algorithm based on the Chinese restaurant metaphor for the HDP clustering. We apply the proposed HDP algorithm to both regulatory network segmentation and gene expression clustering. The HDP algorithm is shown to outperform several popular clustering algorithms by revealing the underlying hierarchical structure of the data. For the yeast cell cycle data, we compare the HDP result to the standard result and show that the HDP algorithm provides more information and reduces the unnecessary clustering fragments. PMID:23587447

  1. Vomeronasal organ and human pheromones.

    PubMed

    Trotier, D

    2011-09-01

    For many organisms, pheromonal communication is of particular importance in managing various aspects of reproduction. In tetrapods, the vomeronasal (Jacobson's) organ specializes in detecting pheromones in biological substrates of congeners. This information triggers behavioral changes associated, in the case of certain pheromones, with neuroendocrine correlates. In human embryos, the organ develops and the nerve fibers constitute a substrate for the migration of GnRH-secreting cells from the olfactory placode toward the hypothalamus. After this essential step for subsequent secretion of sex hormones by the anterior hypophysis, the organ regresses and the neural connections disappear. The vomeronasal cavities can still be observed by endoscopy in some adults, but they lack sensory neurons and nerve fibers. The genes which code for vomeronasal receptor proteins and the specific ionic channels involved in the transduction process are mutated and nonfunctional in humans. In addition, no accessory olfactory bulbs, which receive information from the vomeronasal receptor cells, are found. The vomeronasal sensory function is thus nonoperational in humans. Nevertheless, several steroids are considered to be putative human pheromones; some activate the anterior hypothalamus, but the effects observed are not comparable to those in other mammals. The signaling process (by neuronal detection and transmission to the brain or by systemic effect) remains to be clearly elucidated. Copyright © 2011. Published by Elsevier Masson SAS.

  2. Nonlinear model-based method for clustering periodically expressed genes.

    PubMed

    Tian, Li-Ping; Liu, Li-Zhi; Zhang, Qian-Wei; Wu, Fang-Xiang

    2011-01-01

    Clustering periodically expressed genes from their time-course expression data could help understand the molecular mechanism of those biological processes. In this paper, we propose a nonlinear model-based clustering method for periodically expressed gene profiles. As periodically expressed genes are associated with periodic biological processes, the proposed method naturally assumes that a periodically expressed gene dataset is generated by a number of periodical processes. Each periodical process is modelled by a linear combination of trigonometric sine and cosine functions in time plus a Gaussian noise term. A two stage method is proposed to estimate the model parameter, and a relocation-iteration algorithm is employed to assign each gene to an appropriate cluster. A bootstrapping method and an average adjusted Rand index (AARI) are employed to measure the quality of clustering. One synthetic dataset and two biological datasets were employed to evaluate the performance of the proposed method. The results show that our method allows the better quality clustering than other clustering methods (e.g., k-means) for periodically expressed gene data, and thus it is an effective cluster analysis method for periodically expressed gene data.

  3. clusterProfiler: an R package for comparing biological themes among gene clusters.

    PubMed

    Yu, Guangchuang; Wang, Li-Gen; Han, Yanyan; He, Qing-Yu

    2012-05-01

    Increasing quantitative data generated from transcriptomics and proteomics require integrative strategies for analysis. Here, we present an R package, clusterProfiler that automates the process of biological-term classification and the enrichment analysis of gene clusters. The analysis module and visualization module were combined into a reusable workflow. Currently, clusterProfiler supports three species, including humans, mice, and yeast. Methods provided in this package can be easily extended to other species and ontologies. The clusterProfiler package is released under Artistic-2.0 License within Bioconductor project. The source code and vignette are freely available at http://bioconductor.org/packages/release/bioc/html/clusterProfiler.html.

  4. Sesterterpene ophiobolin biosynthesis involving multiple gene clusters in Aspergillus ustus

    PubMed Central

    Chai, Hangzhen; Yin, Ru; Liu, Yongfeng; Meng, Huiying; Zhou, Xianqiang; Zhou, Guolin; Bi, Xupeng; Yang, Xue; Zhu, Tonghan; Zhu, Weiming; Deng, Zixin; Hong, Kui

    2016-01-01

    Terpenoids are the most diverse and abundant natural products among which sesterterpenes account for less than 2%, with very few reports on their biosynthesis. Ophiobolins are tricyclic 5–8–5 ring sesterterpenes with potential pharmaceutical application. Aspergillus ustus 094102 from mangrove rizhosphere produces ophiobolin and other terpenes. We obtained five gene cluster knockout mutants, with altered ophiobolin yield using genome sequencing and in silico analysis, combined with in vivo genetic manipulation. Involvement of the five gene clusters in ophiobolin synthesis was confirmed by investigation of the five key terpene synthesis relevant enzymes in each gene cluster, either by gene deletion and complementation or in vitro verification of protein function. The results demonstrate that ophiobolin skeleton biosynthesis involves five gene clusters, which are responsible for C15, C20, C25, and C30 terpenoid biosynthesis. PMID:27273151

  5. Nearest Neighbor Networks: clustering expression data based on gene neighborhoods.

    PubMed

    Huttenhower, Curtis; Flamholz, Avi I; Landis, Jessica N; Sahi, Sauhard; Myers, Chad L; Olszewski, Kellen L; Hibbs, Matthew A; Siemers, Nathan O; Troyanskaya, Olga G; Coller, Hilary A

    2007-07-12

    The availability of microarrays measuring thousands of genes simultaneously across hundreds of biological conditions represents an opportunity to understand both individual biological pathways and the integrated workings of the cell. However, translating this amount of data into biological insight remains a daunting task. An important initial step in the analysis of microarray data is clustering of genes with similar behavior. A number of classical techniques are commonly used to perform this task, particularly hierarchical and K-means clustering, and many novel approaches have been suggested recently. While these approaches are useful, they are not without drawbacks; these methods can find clusters in purely random data, and even clusters enriched for biological functions can be skewed towards a small number of processes (e.g. ribosomes). We developed Nearest Neighbor Networks (NNN), a graph-based algorithm to generate clusters of genes with similar expression profiles. This method produces clusters based on overlapping cliques within an interaction network generated from mutual nearest neighborhoods. This focus on nearest neighbors rather than on absolute distance measures allows us to capture clusters with high connectivity even when they are spatially separated, and requiring mutual nearest neighbors allows genes with no sufficiently similar partners to remain unclustered. We compared the clusters generated by NNN with those generated by eight other clustering methods. NNN was particularly successful at generating functionally coherent clusters with high precision, and these clusters generally represented a much broader selection of biological processes than those recovered by other methods. The Nearest Neighbor Networks algorithm is a valuable clustering method that effectively groups genes that are likely to be functionally related. It is particularly attractive due to its simplicity, its success in the analysis of large datasets, and its ability to span a

  6. Nearest Neighbor Networks: clustering expression data based on gene neighborhoods

    PubMed Central

    Huttenhower, Curtis; Flamholz, Avi I; Landis, Jessica N; Sahi, Sauhard; Myers, Chad L; Olszewski, Kellen L; Hibbs, Matthew A; Siemers, Nathan O; Troyanskaya, Olga G; Coller, Hilary A

    2007-01-01

    Background The availability of microarrays measuring thousands of genes simultaneously across hundreds of biological conditions represents an opportunity to understand both individual biological pathways and the integrated workings of the cell. However, translating this amount of data into biological insight remains a daunting task. An important initial step in the analysis of microarray data is clustering of genes with similar behavior. A number of classical techniques are commonly used to perform this task, particularly hierarchical and K-means clustering, and many novel approaches have been suggested recently. While these approaches are useful, they are not without drawbacks; these methods can find clusters in purely random data, and even clusters enriched for biological functions can be skewed towards a small number of processes (e.g. ribosomes). Results We developed Nearest Neighbor Networks (NNN), a graph-based algorithm to generate clusters of genes with similar expression profiles. This method produces clusters based on overlapping cliques within an interaction network generated from mutual nearest neighborhoods. This focus on nearest neighbors rather than on absolute distance measures allows us to capture clusters with high connectivity even when they are spatially separated, and requiring mutual nearest neighbors allows genes with no sufficiently similar partners to remain unclustered. We compared the clusters generated by NNN with those generated by eight other clustering methods. NNN was particularly successful at generating functionally coherent clusters with high precision, and these clusters generally represented a much broader selection of biological processes than those recovered by other methods. Conclusion The Nearest Neighbor Networks algorithm is a valuable clustering method that effectively groups genes that are likely to be functionally related. It is particularly attractive due to its simplicity, its success in the analysis of large datasets

  7. Genomic analyses of bacterial porin-cytochrome gene clusters

    DOE PAGES

    Shi, Liang; Fredrickson, James K.; Zachara, John M.

    2014-11-26

    In this study, the porin-cytochrome (Pcc) protein complex is responsible for trans-outer membrane electron transfer during extracellular reduction of Fe(III) by the dissimilatory metal-reducing bacterium Geobacter sulfurreducens PCA. The identified and characterized Pcc complex of G. sulfurreducens PCA consists of a porin-like outer-membrane protein, a periplasmic 8-heme c type cytochrome (c-Cyt) and an outer-membrane 12-heme c-Cyt, and the genes encoding the Pcc proteins are clustered in the same regions of genome (i.e., the pcc gene clusters) of G. sulfurreducens PCA. A survey of additionally microbial genomes has identified the pcc gene clusters in all sequenced Geobacter spp. and other bacteriamore » from six different phyla, including Anaeromyxobacter dehalogenans 2CP-1, A. dehalogenans 2CP-C, Anaeromyxobacter sp. K, Candidatus Kuenenia stuttgartiensis, Denitrovibrio acetiphilus DSM 12809, Desulfurispirillum indicum S5, Desulfurivibrio alkaliphilus AHT2, Desulfurobacterium thermolithotrophum DSM 11699, Desulfuromonas acetoxidans DSM 684, Ignavibacterium album JCM 16511, and Thermovibrio ammonificans HB-1. The numbers of genes in the pcc gene clusters vary, ranging from two to nine. Similar to the metal-reducing (Mtr) gene clusters of other Fe(III)-reducing bacteria, such as Shewanella spp., additional genes that encode putative c-Cyts with predicted cellular localizations at the cytoplasmic membrane, periplasm and outer membrane often associate with the pcc gene clusters. This suggests that the Pcc-associated c-Cyts may be part of the pathways for extracellular electron transfer reactions. The presence of pcc gene clusters in the microorganisms that do not reduce solid-phase Fe(III) and Mn(IV) oxides, such as D. alkaliphilus AHT2 and I. album JCM 16511, also suggests that some of the pcc gene clusters may be involved in extracellular electron transfer reactions with the substrates other than Fe(III) and Mn(IV) oxides.« less

  8. ORFcurator: molecular curation of genes and gene clusters in prokaryotic organisms.

    PubMed

    Rosenfeld, Jeffrey A; Sarkar, Indra N; Planet, Paul J; Figurski, David H; DeSalle, Rob

    2004-12-12

    The ability to detect clusters of functionally related genes in multiple microbial genomes has enormous potential for enhancing studies on gene function and microbial evolution. The staggering amount of new genome sequence data presents a largely untapped resource for gene cluster discovery. To date, gene cluster analysis has not been fully automated, and one must rely on manual, tedious and time-consuming manipulation of sequences. To facilitate accurate and rapid identification of conserved gene clusters, we developed a database-driven web application, called ORFcurator. We used ORFcurator to find clusters containing any genes similar to those of the 14-gene Widespread Colonization Island of Actinobacillus actinomycetemcomitans. From 126 genomes, ORFcurator identified all 73 clusters previously determined by manual searching. ORFcurator and all associated scripts are freely available as supplementary information. http://www.genomecurator.org/ORFcurator/

  9. Transcription factor clusters regulate genes in eukaryotic cells

    PubMed Central

    Hedlund, Erik G; Friemann, Rosmarie; Hohmann, Stefan

    2017-01-01

    Transcription is regulated through binding factors to gene promoters to activate or repress expression, however, the mechanisms by which factors find targets remain unclear. Using single-molecule fluorescence microscopy, we determined in vivo stoichiometry and spatiotemporal dynamics of a GFP tagged repressor, Mig1, from a paradigm signaling pathway of Saccharomyces cerevisiae. We find the repressor operates in clusters, which upon extracellular signal detection, translocate from the cytoplasm, bind to nuclear targets and turnover. Simulations of Mig1 configuration within a 3D yeast genome model combined with a promoter-specific, fluorescent translation reporter confirmed clusters are the functional unit of gene regulation. In vitro and structural analysis on reconstituted Mig1 suggests that clusters are stabilized by depletion forces between intrinsically disordered sequences. We observed similar clusters of a co-regulatory activator from a different pathway, supporting a generalized cluster model for transcription factors that reduces promoter search times through intersegment transfer while stabilizing gene expression. PMID:28841133

  10. Refactoring the nitrogen fixation gene cluster from Klebsiella oxytoca.

    PubMed

    Temme, Karsten; Zhao, Dehua; Voigt, Christopher A

    2012-05-01

    Bacterial genes associated with a single trait are often grouped in a contiguous unit of the genome known as a gene cluster. It is difficult to genetically manipulate many gene clusters because of complex, redundant, and integrated host regulation. We have developed a systematic approach to completely specify the genetics of a gene cluster by rebuilding it from the bottom up using only synthetic, well-characterized parts. This process removes all native regulation, including that which is undiscovered. First, all noncoding DNA, regulatory proteins, and nonessential genes are removed. The codons of essential genes are changed to create a DNA sequence as divergent as possible from the wild-type (WT) gene. Recoded genes are computationally scanned to eliminate internal regulation. They are organized into operons and placed under the control of synthetic parts (promoters, ribosome binding sites, and terminators) that are functionally separated by spacer parts. Finally, a controller consisting of genetic sensors and circuits regulates the conditions and dynamics of gene expression. We applied this approach to an agriculturally relevant gene cluster from Klebsiella oxytoca encoding the nitrogen fixation pathway for converting atmospheric N(2) to ammonia. The native gene cluster consists of 20 genes in seven operons and is encoded in 23.5 kb of DNA. We constructed a "refactored" gene cluster that shares little DNA sequence identity with WT and for which the function of every genetic part is defined. This work demonstrates the potential for synthetic biology tools to rewrite the genetics encoding complex biological functions to facilitate access, engineering, and transferability.

  11. Clustering Algorithms: Their Application to Gene Expression Data

    PubMed Central

    Oyelade, Jelili; Isewon, Itunuoluwa; Oladipupo, Funke; Aromolaran, Olufemi; Uwoghiren, Efosa; Ameh, Faridah; Achas, Moses; Adebiyi, Ezekiel

    2016-01-01

    Gene expression data hide vital information required to understand the biological process that takes place in a particular organism in relation to its environment. Deciphering the hidden patterns in gene expression data proffers a prodigious preference to strengthen the understanding of functional genomics. The complexity of biological networks and the volume of genes present increase the challenges of comprehending and interpretation of the resulting mass of data, which consists of millions of measurements; these data also inhibit vagueness, imprecision, and noise. Therefore, the use of clustering techniques is a first step toward addressing these challenges, which is essential in the data mining process to reveal natural structures and identify interesting patterns in the underlying data. The clustering of gene expression data has been proven to be useful in making known the natural structure inherent in gene expression data, understanding gene functions, cellular processes, and subtypes of cells, mining useful information from noisy data, and understanding gene regulation. The other benefit of clustering gene expression data is the identification of homology, which is very important in vaccine design. This review examines the various clustering algorithms applicable to the gene expression data in order to discover and provide useful knowledge of the appropriate clustering technique that will guarantee stability and high degree of accuracy in its analysis procedure. PMID:27932867

  12. A yeast pheromone-based inter-species communication system.

    PubMed

    Hennig, Stefan; Clemens, André; Rödel, Gerhard; Ostermann, Kai

    2015-02-01

    We report on a pheromone-based inter-species communication system, allowing for a controlled cell-cell communication between the two species Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Schizosaccharomyces pombe as a proof of principle. It exploits the mating response pathways of the two yeast species employing the pheromones, α- or P-factor, as signaling molecules. The authentic and chimeric pheromone-encoding genes were engineered to code for the P-factor in S. cerevisiae and the α-factor in S. pombe. Upon transformation of the respective constructs, cells were enabled to express the mating pheromone of the opposite species. The supernatant of cultures of S. pombe cells expressing α-factor were able to induce a G1 arrest in the cell cycle, a change in morphology to the typical shmoo effect and expression driven by the pheromone-responsive FIG1 promoter in S. cerevisiae. The supernatant of cultures of S. cerevisiae cells expressing P-factor similarly induced cell cycle arrest in G1, an alteration in morphology typical for mating as well as the activation of the pheromone-responsive promoters of the rep1 and sxa2 genes in a pheromone-hypersensitive reporter strain of S. pombe. Apparently, both heterologous pheromones were correctly processed and secreted in an active form by the cells of the other species. Our data clearly show that the species-specific pheromone systems of yeast species can be exploited for a controlled inter-species communication.

  13. ASYMMETRY IN SEXUAL PHEROMONES IS NOT REQUIRED FOR ASCOMYCETE MATING

    PubMed Central

    Gonçalves-Sá, Joana; Murray, Andrew

    2011-01-01

    SUMMARY Background We investigated the determinants of sexual identity in the budding yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The higher fungi are divided into the Ascomycetes and the Basidiomycetes. Most Ascomycetes have two mating types: one (called α in yeasts and MAT1-1 in filamentous fungi) produces a small, unmodified, peptide pheromone, and the other (a in yeasts and MAT1-2 in filamentous fungi) produces a peptide pheromone conjugated to a C terminal farnesyl group that makes it very hydrophobic. In the Basidiomycetes, all pheromones are lipid-modified, and this difference is a distinguishing feature between the phyla. We asked whether the asymmetry in pheromone modification is required for successful mating in Ascomycetes. Results We cloned receptor and pheromone genes from a filamentous Ascomycete and a Basidiomycete and expressed these in the budding yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, to generate novel, alternative mating pairs. We find that two yeast cells can mate even when both cells secrete a-like or α-like peptides. Importantly, this is true regardless of whether the cells express the a- or α-mating type loci, which control the expression of other, sex-specific genes, in addition to the pheromones and pheromone receptors. Conclusions We demonstrate that the asymmetric pheromone modification is not required for successful mating of ascomycete fungi and confirm that, in budding yeast, the primary determinants of mating are the specificity of the receptors and their corresponding pheromones. PMID:21835624

  14. Asymmetry in sexual pheromones is not required for ascomycete mating.

    PubMed

    Gonçalves-Sá, Joana; Murray, Andrew

    2011-08-23

    We investigated the determinants of sexual identity in the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The higher fungi are divided into the ascomycetes and the basidiomycetes. Most ascomycetes have two mating types: one (called α in yeasts and MAT1-1 in filamentous fungi) produces a small, unmodified, peptide pheromone, and the other (a in yeasts and MAT1-2 in filamentous fungi) produces a peptide pheromone conjugated to a C-terminal farnesyl group that makes it very hydrophobic. In the basidiomycetes, all pheromones are lipid-modified, and this difference is a distinguishing feature between the phyla. We asked whether the asymmetry in pheromone modification is required for successful mating in ascomycetes. We cloned receptor and pheromone genes from a filamentous ascomycete and a basidiomycete and expressed these in the budding yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, to generate novel, alternative mating pairs. We find that two yeast cells can mate even when both cells secrete a-like or α-like peptides. Importantly, this is true regardless of whether the cells express the a- or α-mating-type loci, which control the expression of other, sex-specific genes, in addition to the pheromones and pheromone receptors. We demonstrate that the asymmetric pheromone modification is not required for successful mating of ascomycete fungi and confirm that, in budding yeast, the primary determinants of mating are the specificity of the receptors and their corresponding pheromones. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. From pheromones to behavior.

    PubMed

    Tirindelli, Roberto; Dibattista, Michele; Pifferi, Simone; Menini, Anna

    2009-07-01

    In recent years, considerable progress has been achieved in the comprehension of the profound effects of pheromones on reproductive physiology and behavior. Pheromones have been classified as molecules released by individuals and responsible for the elicitation of specific behavioral expressions in members of the same species. These signaling molecules, often chemically unrelated, are contained in body fluids like urine, sweat, specialized exocrine glands, and mucous secretions of genitals. The standard view of pheromone sensing was based on the assumption that most mammals have two separated olfactory systems with different functional roles: the main olfactory system for recognizing conventional odorant molecules and the vomeronasal system specifically dedicated to the detection of pheromones. However, recent studies have reexamined this traditional interpretation showing that both the main olfactory and the vomeronasal systems are actively involved in pheromonal communication. The current knowledge on the behavioral, physiological, and molecular aspects of pheromone detection in mammals is discussed in this review.

  16. Differential retention of gene functions in a secondary metabolite cluster

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    In fungi, distribution of secondary metabolite (SM) gene clusters is often associated with host- or environment-specific benefits provided by the SMs. In the plant pathogen Alternaria brassicicola (Dothideomycetes), the DEP cluster confers an ability to synthesize the SM depudecin, a histone deacety...

  17. Why biosynthetic genes for chemical defense compounds cluster.

    PubMed

    Takos, Adam M; Rook, Fred

    2012-07-01

    In plants, the genomic clustering of non-homologous genes for the biosynthesis of chemical defense compounds is an emerging theme. Gene clustering is also observed for polymorphic sexual traits under balancing selection, and examples in plants are self-incompatibility and floral dimorphy. The chemical defense pathways organized as gene clusters are self-contained biosynthetic modules under opposing selection pressures and adaptive polymorphisms, often the presence or absence of a functional pathway, are observed in nature. We propose that these antagonistic selection pressures favor closer physical linkage between beneficially interacting alleles as the resulting reduction in recombination maintains a larger fraction of the fitter genotypes. Gene clusters promote the stable inheritance of functional chemical defense pathways in the dynamic ecological context of natural populations. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Entropy-based cluster validation and estimation of the number of clusters in gene expression data.

    PubMed

    Novoselova, Natalia; Tom, Igor

    2012-10-01

    Many external and internal validity measures have been proposed in order to estimate the number of clusters in gene expression data but as a rule they do not consider the analysis of the stability of the groupings produced by a clustering algorithm. Based on the approach assessing the predictive power or stability of a partitioning, we propose the new measure of cluster validation and the selection procedure to determine the suitable number of clusters. The validity measure is based on the estimation of the "clearness" of the consensus matrix, which is the result of a resampling clustering scheme or consensus clustering. According to the proposed selection procedure the stable clustering result is determined with the reference to the validity measure for the null hypothesis encoding for the absence of clusters. The final number of clusters is selected by analyzing the distance between the validity plots for initial and permutated data sets. We applied the selection procedure to estimate the clustering results on several datasets. As a result the proposed procedure produced an accurate and robust estimate of the number of clusters, which are in agreement with the biological knowledge and gold standards of cluster quality.

  19. The human RHOX gene cluster: target genes and functional analysis of gene variants in infertile men.

    PubMed

    Borgmann, Jennifer; Tüttelmann, Frank; Dworniczak, Bernd; Röpke, Albrecht; Song, Hye-Won; Kliesch, Sabine; Wilkinson, Miles F; Laurentino, Sandra; Gromoll, Jörg

    2016-09-15

    The X-linked reproductive homeobox (RHOX) gene cluster encodes transcription factors preferentially expressed in reproductive tissues. This gene cluster has important roles in male fertility based on phenotypic defects of Rhox-mutant mice and the finding that aberrant RHOX promoter methylation is strongly associated with abnormal human sperm parameters. However, little is known about the molecular mechanism of RHOX function in humans. Using gene expression profiling, we identified genes regulated by members of the human RHOX gene cluster. Some genes were uniquely regulated by RHOXF1 or RHOXF2/2B, while others were regulated by both of these transcription factors. Several of these regulated genes encode proteins involved in processes relevant to spermatogenesis; e.g. stress protection and cell survival. One of the target genes of RHOXF2/2B is RHOXF1, suggesting cross-regulation to enhance transcriptional responses. The potential role of RHOX in human infertility was addressed by sequencing all RHOX exons in a group of 250 patients with severe oligozoospermia. This revealed two mutations in RHOXF1 (c.515G > A and c.522C > T) and four in RHOXF2/2B (-73C > G, c.202G > A, c.411C > T and c.679G > A), of which only one (c.202G > A) was found in a control group of men with normal sperm concentration. Functional analysis demonstrated that c.202G > A and c.679G > A significantly impaired the ability of RHOXF2/2B to regulate downstream genes. Molecular modelling suggested that these mutations alter RHOXF2/F2B protein conformation. By combining clinical data with in vitro functional analysis, we demonstrate how the X-linked RHOX gene cluster may function in normal human spermatogenesis and we provide evidence that it is impaired in human male fertility.

  20. Hox gene clusters in the Indonesian coelacanth, Latimeria menadoensis.

    PubMed

    Koh, Esther G L; Lam, Kevin; Christoffels, Alan; Erdmann, Mark V; Brenner, Sydney; Venkatesh, Byrappa

    2003-02-04

    The Hox genes encode transcription factors that play a key role in specifying body plans of metazoans. They are organized into clusters that contain up to 13 paralogue group members. The complex morphology of vertebrates has been attributed to the duplication of Hox clusters during vertebrate evolution. In contrast to the single Hox cluster in the amphioxus (Branchiostoma floridae), an invertebrate-chordate, mammals have four clusters containing 39 Hox genes. Ray-finned fishes (Actinopterygii) such as zebrafish and fugu possess more than four Hox clusters. The coelacanth occupies a basal phylogenetic position among lobe-finned fishes (Sarcopterygii), which gave rise to the tetrapod lineage. The lobe fins of sarcopterygians are considered to be the evolutionary precursors of tetrapod limbs. Thus, the characterization of Hox genes in the coelacanth should provide insights into the origin of tetrapod limbs. We have cloned the complete second exon of 33 Hox genes from the Indonesian coelacanth, Latimeria menadoensis, by extensive PCR survey and genome walking. Phylogenetic analysis shows that 32 of these genes have orthologs in the four mammalian HOX clusters, including three genes (HoxA6, D1, and D8) that are absent in ray-finned fishes. The remaining coelacanth gene is an ortholog of hoxc1 found in zebrafish but absent in mammals. Our results suggest that coelacanths have four Hox clusters bearing a gene complement more similar to mammals than to ray-finned fishes, but with an additional gene, HoxC1, which has been lost during the evolution of mammals from lobe-finned fishes.

  1. Clustering of genes necessary for hydrogen oxidation in Rhodobacter capsulatus.

    PubMed Central

    Xu, H W; Wall, J D

    1991-01-01

    Three cosmids previously shown to contain information necessary for the expression of uptake of hydrogenase in Rhodobacter capsulatus were found to be present in a cluster on the chromosome. Earlier genetic experiments suggested the presence of at least six genes essential for hydrogenase activity that are now shown to be in a region of approximately 18 kb that includes the structural genes for the enzyme. A potential response regulator gene was sequenced as a part of the hup gene region. PMID:2007559

  2. 3D visualization of gene clusters and networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Leishi; Sheng, Weiguo; Liu, Xiaohui

    2005-03-01

    In this paper, we try to provide a global view of DNA microarray gene expression data analysis and modeling process by combining novel and effective visualization techniques with data mining algorithms. An integrated framework has been proposed to model and visualize short, high-dimensional gene expression data. The framework reduces the dimensionality of variables before applying appropriate temporal modeling method. Prototype has been built using Java3D to visualize the framework. The prototype takes gene expression data as input, clusters the genes, displays the clustering results using a novel graph layout algorithm, models individual gene clusters using Dynamic Bayesian Network and then visualizes the modeling results using simple but effective visualization techniques.

  3. SMART: Unique Splitting-While-Merging Framework for Gene Clustering

    PubMed Central

    Fa, Rui; Roberts, David J.; Nandi, Asoke K.

    2014-01-01

    Successful clustering algorithms are highly dependent on parameter settings. The clustering performance degrades significantly unless parameters are properly set, and yet, it is difficult to set these parameters a priori. To address this issue, in this paper, we propose a unique splitting-while-merging clustering framework, named “splitting merging awareness tactics” (SMART), which does not require any a priori knowledge of either the number of clusters or even the possible range of this number. Unlike existing self-splitting algorithms, which over-cluster the dataset to a large number of clusters and then merge some similar clusters, our framework has the ability to split and merge clusters automatically during the process and produces the the most reliable clustering results, by intrinsically integrating many clustering techniques and tasks. The SMART framework is implemented with two distinct clustering paradigms in two algorithms: competitive learning and finite mixture model. Nevertheless, within the proposed SMART framework, many other algorithms can be derived for different clustering paradigms. The minimum message length algorithm is integrated into the framework as the clustering selection criterion. The usefulness of the SMART framework and its algorithms is tested in demonstration datasets and simulated gene expression datasets. Moreover, two real microarray gene expression datasets are studied using this approach. Based on the performance of many metrics, all numerical results show that SMART is superior to compared existing self-splitting algorithms and traditional algorithms. Three main properties of the proposed SMART framework are summarized as: (1) needing no parameters dependent on the respective dataset or a priori knowledge about the datasets, (2) extendible to many different applications, (3) offering superior performance compared with counterpart algorithms. PMID:24714159

  4. Identifying a gene expression signature of cluster headache in blood

    PubMed Central

    Eising, Else; Pelzer, Nadine; Vijfhuizen, Lisanne S.; Vries, Boukje de; Ferrari, Michel D.; ‘t Hoen, Peter A. C.; Terwindt, Gisela M.; van den Maagdenberg, Arn M. J. M.

    2017-01-01

    Cluster headache is a relatively rare headache disorder, typically characterized by multiple daily, short-lasting attacks of excruciating, unilateral (peri-)orbital or temporal pain associated with autonomic symptoms and restlessness. To better understand the pathophysiology of cluster headache, we used RNA sequencing to identify differentially expressed genes and pathways in whole blood of patients with episodic (n = 19) or chronic (n = 20) cluster headache in comparison with headache-free controls (n = 20). Gene expression data were analysed by gene and by module of co-expressed genes with particular attention to previously implicated disease pathways including hypocretin dysregulation. Only moderate gene expression differences were identified and no associations were found with previously reported pathogenic mechanisms. At the level of functional gene sets, associations were observed for genes involved in several brain-related mechanisms such as GABA receptor function and voltage-gated channels. In addition, genes and modules of co-expressed genes showed a role for intracellular signalling cascades, mitochondria and inflammation. Although larger study samples may be required to identify the full range of involved pathways, these results indicate a role for mitochondria, intracellular signalling and inflammation in cluster headache. PMID:28074859

  5. Minimum spanning trees for gene expression data clustering.

    PubMed

    Xu, Y; Olman, V; Xu, D

    2001-01-01

    This paper describes a new framework for microarray gene-expression data clustering. The foundation of this framework is a minimum spanning tree (MST) representation of a set of multi-dimensional gene expression data. A key property of this representation is that each cluster of the expression data corresponds to one subtree of the MST, which rigorously converts a multi-dimensional clustering problem to a tree partitioning problem. We have demonstrated that though the inter-data relationship is greatly simplified in the MST representation, no essential information is lost for the purpose of clustering. Two key advantages in representing a set of multi-dimensional data as an MST are: (1) the simple structure of a tree facilitates efficient implementations of rigorous clustering algorithms, which otherwise are highly computationally challenging; and (2) as an MST-based clustering does not depend on detailed geometric shape of a cluster, it can overcome many of the problems faced by classical clustering algorithms. Based on the MST representation, we have developed a number of rigorous and efficient clustering algorithms, including two with guaranteed global optimality. We have implemented these algorithms as a computer software EXCAVATOR. To demonstrate its effectiveness, we have tested it on two data sets, i.e., expression data from yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, and Arabidopsis expression data in response to chitin elicitation.

  6. Gene Cluster Encoding Cholate Catabolism in Rhodococcus spp.

    PubMed Central

    Wilbrink, Maarten H.; Casabon, Israël; Stewart, Gordon R.; Liu, Jie; van der Geize, Robert; Eltis, Lindsay D.

    2012-01-01

    Bile acids are highly abundant steroids with important functions in vertebrate digestion. Their catabolism by bacteria is an important component of the carbon cycle, contributes to gut ecology, and has potential commercial applications. We found that Rhodococcus jostii RHA1 grows well on cholate, as well as on its conjugates, taurocholate and glycocholate. The transcriptome of RHA1 growing on cholate revealed 39 genes upregulated on cholate, occurring in a single gene cluster. Reverse transcriptase quantitative PCR confirmed that selected genes in the cluster were upregulated 10-fold on cholate versus on cholesterol. One of these genes, kshA3, encoding a putative 3-ketosteroid-9α-hydroxylase, was deleted and found essential for growth on cholate. Two coenzyme A (CoA) synthetases encoded in the cluster, CasG and CasI, were heterologously expressed. CasG was shown to transform cholate to cholyl-CoA, thus initiating side chain degradation. CasI was shown to form CoA derivatives of steroids with isopropanoyl side chains, likely occurring as degradation intermediates. Orthologous gene clusters were identified in all available Rhodococcus genomes, as well as that of Thermomonospora curvata. Moreover, Rhodococcus equi 103S, Rhodococcus ruber Chol-4 and Rhodococcus erythropolis SQ1 each grew on cholate. In contrast, several mycolic acid bacteria lacking the gene cluster were unable to grow on cholate. Our results demonstrate that the above-mentioned gene cluster encodes cholate catabolism and is distinct from a more widely occurring gene cluster encoding cholesterol catabolism. PMID:23024343

  7. Secondary metabolic gene clusters: evolutionary toolkits for chemical innovation.

    PubMed

    Osbourn, Anne

    2010-10-01

    Microbes and plants produce a huge array of secondary metabolites that have important ecological functions. These molecules have long been exploited in medicine as antibiotics, anticancer and anti-infective agents and for a wide range of other applications. Gene clusters for secondary metabolic pathways are common in bacteria and filamentous fungi, and examples have now been discovered in plants. Here, current knowledge of gene clusters across the kingdoms is evaluated with the aim of trying to understand the rules behind cluster existence and evolution. Such knowledge will be crucial in learning how to activate the enormous number of 'silent' gene clusters being revealed by whole-genome sequencing and hence in making available a wealth of novel compounds for evaluation as drug leads and other bioactives. It could also facilitate the development of crop plants with enhanced pest or disease resistance, improved nutritional qualities and/or elevated levels of high-value products.

  8. Clustering gene expression data using a diffraction‐inspired framework

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background The recent developments in microarray technology has allowed for the simultaneous measurement of gene expression levels. The large amount of captured data challenges conventional statistical tools for analysing and finding inherent correlations between genes and samples. The unsupervised clustering approach is often used, resulting in the development of a wide variety of algorithms. Typical clustering algorithms require selecting certain parameters to operate, for instance the number of expected clusters, as well as defining a similarity measure to quantify the distance between data points. The diffraction‐based clustering algorithm however is designed to overcome this necessity for user‐defined parameters, as it is able to automatically search the data for any underlying structure. Methods The diffraction‐based clustering algorithm presented in this paper is tested using five well‐known expression datasets pertaining to cancerous tissue samples. The clustering results are then compared to those results obtained from conventional algorithms such as the k‐means, fuzzy c‐means, self‐organising map, hierarchical clustering algorithm, Gaussian mixture model and density‐based spatial clustering of applications with noise (DBSCAN). The performance of each algorithm is measured using an average external criterion and an average validity index. Results The diffraction‐based clustering algorithm is shown to be independent of the number of clusters as the algorithm searches the feature space and requires no form of parameter selection. The results show that the diffraction‐based clustering algorithm performs significantly better on the real biological datasets compared to the other existing algorithms. Conclusion The results of the diffraction‐based clustering algorithm presented in this paper suggest that the method can provide researchers with a new tool for successfully analysing microarray data. PMID:23164195

  9. Characterization of the Largest Effector Gene Cluster of Ustilago maydis

    PubMed Central

    Vincon, Volker; Kahmann, Regine

    2014-01-01

    In the genome of the biotrophic plant pathogen Ustilago maydis, many of the genes coding for secreted protein effectors modulating virulence are arranged in gene clusters. The vast majority of these genes encode novel proteins whose expression is coupled to plant colonization. The largest of these gene clusters, cluster 19A, encodes 24 secreted effectors. Deletion of the entire cluster results in severe attenuation of virulence. Here we present the functional analysis of this genomic region. We show that a 19A deletion mutant behaves like an endophyte, i.e. is still able to colonize plants and complete the infection cycle. However, tumors, the most conspicuous symptoms of maize smut disease, are only rarely formed and fungal biomass in infected tissue is significantly reduced. The generation and analysis of strains carrying sub-deletions identified several genes significantly contributing to tumor formation after seedling infection. Another of the effectors could be linked specifically to anthocyanin induction in the infected tissue. As the individual contributions of these genes to tumor formation were small, we studied the response of maize plants to the whole cluster mutant as well as to several individual mutants by array analysis. This revealed distinct plant responses, demonstrating that the respective effectors have discrete plant targets. We propose that the analysis of plant responses to effector mutant strains that lack a strong virulence phenotype may be a general way to visualize differences in effector function. PMID:24992561

  10. Characterization of the largest effector gene cluster of Ustilago maydis.

    PubMed

    Brefort, Thomas; Tanaka, Shigeyuki; Neidig, Nina; Doehlemann, Gunther; Vincon, Volker; Kahmann, Regine

    2014-07-01

    In the genome of the biotrophic plant pathogen Ustilago maydis, many of the genes coding for secreted protein effectors modulating virulence are arranged in gene clusters. The vast majority of these genes encode novel proteins whose expression is coupled to plant colonization. The largest of these gene clusters, cluster 19A, encodes 24 secreted effectors. Deletion of the entire cluster results in severe attenuation of virulence. Here we present the functional analysis of this genomic region. We show that a 19A deletion mutant behaves like an endophyte, i.e. is still able to colonize plants and complete the infection cycle. However, tumors, the most conspicuous symptoms of maize smut disease, are only rarely formed and fungal biomass in infected tissue is significantly reduced. The generation and analysis of strains carrying sub-deletions identified several genes significantly contributing to tumor formation after seedling infection. Another of the effectors could be linked specifically to anthocyanin induction in the infected tissue. As the individual contributions of these genes to tumor formation were small, we studied the response of maize plants to the whole cluster mutant as well as to several individual mutants by array analysis. This revealed distinct plant responses, demonstrating that the respective effectors have discrete plant targets. We propose that the analysis of plant responses to effector mutant strains that lack a strong virulence phenotype may be a general way to visualize differences in effector function.

  11. Heterologous Expression of Novobiocin and Clorobiocin Biosynthetic Gene Clusters

    PubMed Central

    Eustáquio, Alessandra S.; Gust, Bertolt; Galm, Ute; Li, Shu-Ming; Chater, Keith F.; Heide, Lutz

    2005-01-01

    A method was developed for the heterologous expression of biosynthetic gene clusters in different Streptomyces strains and for the modification of these clusters by single or multiple gene replacements or gene deletions with unprecedented speed and versatility. λ-Red-mediated homologous recombination was used for genetic modification of the gene clusters, and the attachment site and integrase of phage φC31 were employed for the integration of these clusters into the heterologous hosts. This method was used to express the gene clusters of the aminocoumarin antibiotics novobiocin and clorobiocin in the well-studied strains Streptomyces coelicolor and Streptomyces lividans, which, in contrast to the natural producers, can be easily genetically manipulated. S. coelicolor M512 derivatives produced the respective antibiotic in yields comparable to those of natural producer strains, whereas S. lividans TK24 derivatives were at least five times less productive. This method could also be used to carry out functional investigations. Shortening of the cosmids' inserts showed which genes are essential for antibiotic production. PMID:15870333

  12. Mating pheromones of heterobasidiomycetous yeasts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kamiya, Y.; Sakurai, A.

    1981-03-01

    Two mating pheromones, which induce mating tube formation, were isolated from Rhodosporidium toruloides (rhodotorucine A) and Tremella mesenterica (tremerogen A-10). These mating pheromones are lipophilic oligopeptides having S-alkylated cysteine at the C-terminus but different amino acid sequences. Synthetic analogues of these pheromones revealed the structure-activity relationships. Metabolism of rhodotorucine A was also studied by using labeled pheromones.

  13. An improved algorithm for clustering gene expression data.

    PubMed

    Bandyopadhyay, Sanghamitra; Mukhopadhyay, Anirban; Maulik, Ujjwal

    2007-11-01

    Recent advancements in microarray technology allows simultaneous monitoring of the expression levels of a large number of genes over different time points. Clustering is an important tool for analyzing such microarray data, typical properties of which are its inherent uncertainty, noise and imprecision. In this article, a two-stage clustering algorithm, which employs a recently proposed variable string length genetic scheme and a multiobjective genetic clustering algorithm, is proposed. It is based on the novel concept of points having significant membership to multiple classes. An iterated version of the well-known Fuzzy C-Means is also utilized for clustering. The significant superiority of the proposed two-stage clustering algorithm as compared to the average linkage method, Self Organizing Map (SOM) and a recently developed weighted Chinese restaurant-based clustering method (CRC), widely used methods for clustering gene expression data, is established on a variety of artificial and publicly available real life data sets. The biological relevance of the clustering solutions are also analyzed.

  14. Cluster J Mycobacteriophages: Intron Splicing in Capsid and Tail Genes

    PubMed Central

    Pope, Welkin H.; Jacobs-Sera, Deborah; Best, Aaron A.; Broussard, Gregory W.; Connerly, Pamela L.; Dedrick, Rebekah M.; Kremer, Timothy A.; Offner, Susan; Ogiefo, Amenawon H.; Pizzorno, Marie C.; Rockenbach, Kate; Russell, Daniel A.; Stowe, Emily L.; Stukey, Joseph; Thibault, Sarah A.; Conway, James F.; Hendrix, Roger W.; Hatfull, Graham F.

    2013-01-01

    Bacteriophages isolated on Mycobacterium smegmatis mc2155 represent many distinct genomes sharing little or no DNA sequence similarity. The genomes are architecturally mosaic and are replete with genes of unknown function. A new group of genomes sharing substantial nucleotide sequences constitute Cluster J. The six mycobacteriophages forming Cluster J are morphologically members of the Siphoviridae, but have unusually long genomes ranging from 106.3 to 117 kbp. Reconstruction of the capsid by cryo-electron microscopy of mycobacteriophage BAKA reveals an icosahedral structure with a triangulation number of 13. All six phages are temperate and homoimmune, and prophage establishment involves integration into a tRNA-Leu gene not previously identified as a mycobacterial attB site for phage integration. The Cluster J genomes provide two examples of intron splicing within the virion structural genes, one in a major capsid subunit gene, and one in a tail gene. These genomes also contain numerous free-standing HNH homing endonuclease, and comparative analysis reveals how these could contribute to genome mosaicism. The unusual Cluster J genomes provide new insights into phage genome architecture, gene function, capsid structure, gene mobility, intron splicing, and evolution. PMID:23874930

  15. Identification of Nitrogen-Fixing Genes and Gene Clusters from Metagenomic Library of Acid Mine Drainage

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Huaqun; Liang, Yili; Cong, Jing; Liu, Xueduan

    2014-01-01

    Biological nitrogen fixation is an essential function of acid mine drainage (AMD) microbial communities. However, most acidophiles in AMD environments are uncultured microorganisms and little is known about the diversity of nitrogen-fixing genes and structure of nif gene cluster in AMD microbial communities. In this study, we used metagenomic sequencing to isolate nif genes in the AMD microbial community from Dexing Copper Mine, China. Meanwhile, a metagenome microarray containing 7,776 large-insertion fosmids was constructed to screen novel nif gene clusters. Metagenomic analyses revealed that 742 sequences were identified as nif genes including structural subunit genes nifH, nifD, nifK and various additional genes. The AMD community is massively dominated by the genus Acidithiobacillus. However, the phylogenetic diversity of nitrogen-fixing microorganisms is much higher than previously thought in the AMD community. Furthermore, a 32.5-kb genomic sequence harboring nif, fix and associated genes was screened by metagenome microarray. Comparative genome analysis indicated that most nif genes in this cluster are most similar to those of Herbaspirillum seropedicae, but the organization of the nif gene cluster had significant differences from H. seropedicae. Sequence analysis and reverse transcription PCR also suggested that distinct transcription units of nif genes exist in this gene cluster. nifQ gene falls into the same transcription unit with fixABCX genes, which have not been reported in other diazotrophs before. All of these results indicated that more novel diazotrophs survive in the AMD community. PMID:24498417

  16. Identification of nitrogen-fixing genes and gene clusters from metagenomic library of acid mine drainage.

    PubMed

    Dai, Zhimin; Guo, Xue; Yin, Huaqun; Liang, Yili; Cong, Jing; Liu, Xueduan

    2014-01-01

    Biological nitrogen fixation is an essential function of acid mine drainage (AMD) microbial communities. However, most acidophiles in AMD environments are uncultured microorganisms and little is known about the diversity of nitrogen-fixing genes and structure of nif gene cluster in AMD microbial communities. In this study, we used metagenomic sequencing to isolate nif genes in the AMD microbial community from Dexing Copper Mine, China. Meanwhile, a metagenome microarray containing 7,776 large-insertion fosmids was constructed to screen novel nif gene clusters. Metagenomic analyses revealed that 742 sequences were identified as nif genes including structural subunit genes nifH, nifD, nifK and various additional genes. The AMD community is massively dominated by the genus Acidithiobacillus. However, the phylogenetic diversity of nitrogen-fixing microorganisms is much higher than previously thought in the AMD community. Furthermore, a 32.5-kb genomic sequence harboring nif, fix and associated genes was screened by metagenome microarray. Comparative genome analysis indicated that most nif genes in this cluster are most similar to those of Herbaspirillum seropedicae, but the organization of the nif gene cluster had significant differences from H. seropedicae. Sequence analysis and reverse transcription PCR also suggested that distinct transcription units of nif genes exist in this gene cluster. nifQ gene falls into the same transcription unit with fixABCX genes, which have not been reported in other diazotrophs before. All of these results indicated that more novel diazotrophs survive in the AMD community.

  17. Pheromones: a new ergogenic aid in sport?

    PubMed

    Papaloucas, Marios; Kyriazi, Kyriaki; Kouloulias, Vassilis

    2015-10-01

    Nowadays, antidoping laboratories are improving detection methods to confirm the use of forbidden substances. These tests are based both on direct identification of new substances or their metabolites and on indirect evaluation of changes in gene, protein, or metabolite patterns (genomics, proteomics, or metabolomics). The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) officially monitors anabolic steroids, hormones, growth factors, β-agonists, hormone and metabolic modulators, masking agents, street drugs, manipulation of blood and blood components, chemical and physical manipulation, gene doping, stimulants, narcotics, glucocorticosteroids, and β-blockers. However, several other substances are under review by WADA. Pheromones accomplish the structure and function of life from its first step, while they have an impact on the body's performance. Both testosterone and pheromones have an ergogenic effect that could potentially affect an athlete's performance. The authors share their questions concerning the potential impact of pheromones in sports.

  18. Clustered Genes Involved in Cyclopiazonic Acid Production are Next to the Aflatoxin Biosynthesis Gene Cluster in Aspergillus flavus

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Cyclopiazonic acid (CPA), an indole-tetramic acid toxin, is produced by many species of Aspergillus and Penicillium. In addition to CPA Aspergillus flavus produces polyketide-derived carcinogenic aflatoxins (AFs). AF biosynthesis genes form a gene cluster in a subtelomeric region. Isolates of A. fla...

  19. Cloning large natural product gene clusters from the environment: Piecing environmental DNA gene clusters back together with TAR

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Jeffrey H; Feng, Zhiyang; Bauer, John D; Kallifidas, Dimitris; Calle, Paula Y; Brady, Sean F

    2010-01-01

    A single gram of soil can contain thousands of unique bacterial species, of which only a small fraction is regularly cultured in the laboratory. Although the fermentation of cultured microorganisms has provided access to numerous bioactive secondary metabolites, with these same methods it is not possible to characterize the natural products encoded by the uncultured majority. The heterologous expression of biosynthetic gene clusters cloned from DNA extracted directly from environmental samples (eDNA) has the potential to provide access to the chemical diversity encoded in the genomes of uncultured bacteria. One of the challenges facing this approach has been that many natural product biosynthetic gene clusters are too large to be readily captured on a single fragment of cloned eDNA. The reassembly of large eDNA-derived natural product gene clusters from collections of smaller overlapping clones represents one potential solution to this problem. Unfortunately, traditional methods for the assembly of large DNA sequences from multiple overlapping clones can be technically challenging. Here we present a general experimental framework that permits the recovery of large natural product biosynthetic gene clusters on overlapping soil-derived eDNA cosmid clones and the reassembly of these large gene clusters using transformation-associated recombination (TAR) in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The development of practical methods for the rapid assembly of biosynthetic gene clusters from collections of overlapping eDNA clones is an important step toward being able to functionally study larger natural product gene clusters from uncultured bacteria. © 2010 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Biopolymers 93: 833–844, 2010. PMID:20577994

  20. Stereochemical studies on pheromonal communications

    PubMed Central

    MORI, Kenji

    2014-01-01

    Pheromonal communications are heavily dependent on the stereochemistry of pheromones. Their enantioselective syntheses could establish the absolute configuration of the naturally occurring pheromones, and clarified the unique relationships between absolute configuration and bioactivity. For example, neither the (R)- nor (S)-enantiomer of sulcatol, the aggregation pheromone of an ambrosia beetle, is behaviorally active, while their mixture is bioactive. Recent results as summarized in the present review further illustrate the unique and diverse relationships between stereochemistry and bioactivity of pheromones. PMID:25504227

  1. Genomic analyses of bacterial porin-cytochrome gene clusters

    SciTech Connect

    Shi, Liang; Fredrickson, James K.; Zachara, John M.

    2014-11-26

    In this study, the porin-cytochrome (Pcc) protein complex is responsible for trans-outer membrane electron transfer during extracellular reduction of Fe(III) by the dissimilatory metal-reducing bacterium Geobacter sulfurreducens PCA. The identified and characterized Pcc complex of G. sulfurreducens PCA consists of a porin-like outer-membrane protein, a periplasmic 8-heme c type cytochrome (c-Cyt) and an outer-membrane 12-heme c-Cyt, and the genes encoding the Pcc proteins are clustered in the same regions of genome (i.e., the pcc gene clusters) of G. sulfurreducens PCA. A survey of additionally microbial genomes has identified the pcc gene clusters in all sequenced Geobacter spp. and other bacteria from six different phyla, including Anaeromyxobacter dehalogenans 2CP-1, A. dehalogenans 2CP-C, Anaeromyxobacter sp. K, Candidatus Kuenenia stuttgartiensis, Denitrovibrio acetiphilus DSM 12809, Desulfurispirillum indicum S5, Desulfurivibrio alkaliphilus AHT2, Desulfurobacterium thermolithotrophum DSM 11699, Desulfuromonas acetoxidans DSM 684, Ignavibacterium album JCM 16511, and Thermovibrio ammonificans HB-1. The numbers of genes in the pcc gene clusters vary, ranging from two to nine. Similar to the metal-reducing (Mtr) gene clusters of other Fe(III)-reducing bacteria, such as Shewanella spp., additional genes that encode putative c-Cyts with predicted cellular localizations at the cytoplasmic membrane, periplasm and outer membrane often associate with the pcc gene clusters. This suggests that the Pcc-associated c-Cyts may be part of the pathways for extracellular electron transfer reactions. The presence of pcc gene clusters in the microorganisms that do not reduce solid-phase Fe(III) and Mn(IV) oxides, such as D. alkaliphilus AHT2 and I. album JCM 16511, also suggests that some of the pcc gene clusters may be involved in extracellular

  2. Transcriptional regulation of the novobiocin biosynthetic gene cluster.

    PubMed

    Dangel, Volker; Härle, Johannes; Goerke, Christiane; Wolz, Christiane; Gust, Bertolt; Pernodet, Jean-Luc; Heide, Lutz

    2009-12-01

    The aminocoumarin antibiotic novobiocin is a gyrase inhibitor formed by a Streptomyces strain. The biosynthetic gene cluster of novobiocin spans 23.4 kb and contains 20 coding sequences, among them the two regulatory genes novE and novG. We investigated the location of transcriptional promoters within this cluster by insertion of transcriptional terminator cassettes and RT-PCR analysis of the resulting mutants. The cluster was found to contain eight DNA regions with promoter activity. The regulatory protein NovG binds to a previously identified binding site within the promoter region located upstream of novH, but apparently not to any of the other seven promoters. Quantitative real-time PCR was used to compare the number of transcripts in a strain carrying an intact novobiocin cluster with strains carrying mutated clusters. Both in-frame deletion of the regulatory gene novG and insertion of a terminator cassette into the biosynthetic gene novH led to a strong reduction of the number of transcripts of the genes located between novH and novW. This suggested that these 16 biosynthetic genes form a single operon. Three internal promoters are located within this operon but appear to be of minor importance, if any, under our experimental conditions. Transcription of novG was found to depend on the presence of NovE, suggesting that the two regulatory genes, novE and novG, act in a cascade-like mechanism. The resistance gene gyrB(R), encoding an aminocoumarin-resistant gyrase B subunit, may initially be co-transcribed with the genes from novH to novW. However, when the gyrase inhibitor novobiocin accumulates in the cultures, gyrB(R) is transcribed from its own promoter. Previous work has suggested that this promoter is controlled by the superhelical density of chromosomal DNA.

  3. Interpolation based consensus clustering for gene expression time series.

    PubMed

    Chiu, Tai-Yu; Hsu, Ting-Chieh; Yen, Chia-Cheng; Wang, Jia-Shung

    2015-04-16

    Unsupervised analyses such as clustering are the essential tools required to interpret time-series expression data from microarrays. Several clustering algorithms have been developed to analyze gene expression data. Early methods such as k-means, hierarchical clustering, and self-organizing maps are popular for their simplicity. However, because of noise and uncertainty of measurement, these common algorithms have low accuracy. Moreover, because gene expression is a temporal process, the relationship between successive time points should be considered in the analyses. In addition, biological processes are generally continuous; therefore, the datasets collected from time series experiments are often found to have an insufficient number of data points and, as a result, compensation for missing data can also be an issue. An affinity propagation-based clustering algorithm for time-series gene expression data is proposed. The algorithm explores the relationship between genes using a sliding-window mechanism to extract a large number of features. In addition, the time-course datasets are resampled with spline interpolation to predict the unobserved values. Finally, a consensus process is applied to enhance the robustness of the method. Some real gene expression datasets were analyzed to demonstrate the accuracy and efficiency of the algorithm. The proposed algorithm has benefitted from the use of cubic B-splines interpolation, sliding-window, affinity propagation, gene relativity graph, and a consensus process, and, as a result, provides both appropriate and effective clustering of time-series gene expression data. The proposed method was tested with gene expression data from the Yeast galactose dataset, the Yeast cell-cycle dataset (Y5), and the Yeast sporulation dataset, and the results illustrated the relationships between the expressed genes, which may give some insights into the biological processes involved.

  4. An Agent-Based Clustering Approach for Gene Selection in Gene Expression Microarray.

    PubMed

    Ramos, Juan; Castellanos-Garzón, José A; González-Briones, Alfonso; de Paz, Juan F; Corchado, Juan M

    2017-03-09

    Gene selection is a major research area in microarray analysis, which seeks to discover differentially expressed genes for a particular target annotation. Such genes also often called informative genes are able to differentiate tissue samples belonging to different classes of the studied disease. Despite the fact that there is a wide number of proposals, the complexity imposed by this problem remains a challenge today. This research proposes a gene selection approach by means of a clustering-based multi-agent system. This proposal manages different filter methods and gene clustering through coordinated agents to discover informative gene subsets. To assess the reliability of our approach, we have used four important and public gene expression datasets, two Lung cancer datasets, Colon and Leukemia cancer dataset. The achieved results have been validated through cluster validity measures, visual analytics, a classifier and compared with other gene selection methods, proving the reliability of our proposal.

  5. Evolutionary conservation of regulatory elements in vertebrate Hox gene clusters.

    PubMed

    Santini, Simona; Boore, Jeffrey L; Meyer, Axel

    2003-06-01

    Comparisons of DNA sequences among evolutionarily distantly related genomes permit identification of conserved functional regions in noncoding DNA. Hox genes are highly conserved in vertebrates, occur in clusters, and are uninterrupted by other genes. We aligned (PipMaker) the nucleotide sequences of the HoxA clusters of tilapia, pufferfish, striped bass, zebrafish, horn shark, human, and mouse, which are separated by approximately 500 million years of evolution. In support of our approach, several identified putative regulatory elements known to regulate the expression of Hox genes were recovered. The majority of the newly identified putative regulatory elements contain short fragments that are almost completely conserved and are identical to known binding sites for regulatory proteins (Transfac database). The regulatory intergenic regions located between the genes that are expressed most anteriorly in the embryo are longer and apparently more evolutionarily conserved than those at the other end of Hox clusters. Different presumed regulatory sequences are retained in either the Aalpha or Abeta duplicated Hox clusters in the fish lineages. This suggests that the conserved elements are involved in different gene regulatory networks and supports the duplication-deletion-complementation model of functional divergence of duplicated genes.

  6. Evolutionary Conservation of Regulatory Elements in Vertebrate Hox Gene Clusters

    PubMed Central

    Santini, Simona; Boore, Jeffrey L.; Meyer, Axel

    2003-01-01

    Comparisons of DNA sequences among evolutionarily distantly related genomes permit identification of conserved functional regions in noncoding DNA. Hox genes are highly conserved in vertebrates, occur in clusters, and are uninterrupted by other genes. We aligned (PipMaker) the nucleotide sequences of the HoxA clusters of tilapia, pufferfish, striped bass, zebrafish, horn shark, human, and mouse, which are separated by approximately 500 million years of evolution. In support of our approach, several identified putative regulatory elements known to regulate the expression of Hox genes were recovered. The majority of the newly identified putative regulatory elements contain short fragments that are almost completely conserved and are identical to known binding sites for regulatory proteins (Transfac database). The regulatory intergenic regions located between the genes that are expressed most anteriorly in the embryo are longer and apparently more evolutionarily conserved than those at the other end of Hox clusters. Different presumed regulatory sequences are retained in either the Aα or Aβ duplicated Hox clusters in the fish lineages. This suggests that the conserved elements are involved in different gene regulatory networks and supports the duplication-deletion-complementation model of functional divergence of duplicated genes. PMID:12799348

  7. Accurate prediction of secondary metabolite gene clusters in filamentous fungi.

    PubMed

    Andersen, Mikael R; Nielsen, Jakob B; Klitgaard, Andreas; Petersen, Lene M; Zachariasen, Mia; Hansen, Tilde J; Blicher, Lene H; Gotfredsen, Charlotte H; Larsen, Thomas O; Nielsen, Kristian F; Mortensen, Uffe H

    2013-01-02

    Biosynthetic pathways of secondary metabolites from fungi are currently subject to an intense effort to elucidate the genetic basis for these compounds due to their large potential within pharmaceutics and synthetic biochemistry. The preferred method is methodical gene deletions to identify supporting enzymes for key synthases one cluster at a time. In this study, we design and apply a DNA expression array for Aspergillus nidulans in combination with legacy data to form a comprehensive gene expression compendium. We apply a guilt-by-association-based analysis to predict the extent of the biosynthetic clusters for the 58 synthases active in our set of experimental conditions. A comparison with legacy data shows the method to be accurate in 13 of 16 known clusters and nearly accurate for the remaining 3 clusters. Furthermore, we apply a data clustering approach, which identifies cross-chemistry between physically separate gene clusters (superclusters), and validate this both with legacy data and experimentally by prediction and verification of a supercluster consisting of the synthase AN1242 and the prenyltransferase AN11080, as well as identification of the product compound nidulanin A. We have used A. nidulans for our method development and validation due to the wealth of available biochemical data, but the method can be applied to any fungus with a sequenced and assembled genome, thus supporting further secondary metabolite pathway elucidation in the fungal kingdom.

  8. DNA methylation profiling identifies CG methylation clusters in Arabidopsis genes.

    PubMed

    Tran, Robert K; Henikoff, Jorja G; Zilberman, Daniel; Ditt, Renata F; Jacobsen, Steven E; Henikoff, Steven

    2005-01-26

    Cytosine DNA methylation in vertebrates is widespread, but methylation in plants is found almost exclusively at transposable elements and repetitive DNA. Within regions of methylation, methylcytosines are typically found in CG, CNG, and asymmetric contexts. CG sites are maintained by a plant homolog of mammalian Dnmt1 acting on hemi-methylated DNA after replication. Methylation of CNG and asymmetric sites appears to be maintained at each cell cycle by other mechanisms. We report a new type of DNA methylation in Arabidopsis, dense CG methylation clusters found at scattered sites throughout the genome. These clusters lack non-CG methylation and are preferentially found in genes, although they are relatively deficient toward the 5' end. CG methylation clusters are present in lines derived from different accessions and in mutants that eliminate de novo methylation, indicating that CG methylation clusters are stably maintained at specific sites. Because 5-methylcytosine is mutagenic, the appearance of CG methylation clusters over evolutionary time predicts a genome-wide deficiency of CG dinucleotides and an excess of C(A/T)G trinucleotides within transcribed regions. This is exactly what we find, implying that CG methylation clusters have contributed profoundly to plant gene evolution. We suggest that CG methylation clusters silence cryptic promoters that arise sporadically within transcription units.

  9. Phage cluster relationships identified through single gene analysis

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Phylogenetic comparison of bacteriophages requires whole genome approaches such as dotplot analysis, genome pairwise maps, and gene content analysis. Currently mycobacteriophages, a highly studied phage group, are categorized into related clusters based on the comparative analysis of whole genome sequences. With the recent explosion of phage isolation, a simple method for phage cluster prediction would facilitate analysis of crude or complex samples without whole genome isolation and sequencing. The hypothesis of this study was that mycobacteriophage-cluster prediction is possible using comparison of a single, ubiquitous, semi-conserved gene. Tape Measure Protein (TMP) was selected to test the hypothesis because it is typically the longest gene in mycobacteriophage genomes and because regions within the TMP gene are conserved. Results A single gene, TMP, identified the known Mycobacteriophage clusters and subclusters using a Gepard dotplot comparison or a phylogenetic tree constructed from global alignment and maximum likelihood comparisons. Gepard analysis of 247 mycobacteriophage TMP sequences appropriately recovered 98.8% of the subcluster assignments that were made by whole-genome comparison. Subcluster-specific primers within TMP allow for PCR determination of the mycobacteriophage subcluster from DNA samples. Using the single-gene comparison approach for siphovirus coliphages, phage groupings by TMP comparison reflected relationships observed in a whole genome dotplot comparison and confirm the potential utility of this approach to another widely studied group of phages. Conclusions TMP sequence comparison and PCR results support the hypothesis that a single gene can be used for distinguishing phage cluster and subcluster assignments. TMP single-gene analysis can quickly and accurately aid in mycobacteriophage classification. PMID:23777341

  10. Ontology-Driven Co-clustering of Gene Expression Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cordero, Francesca; Pensa, Ruggero G.; Visconti, Alessia; Ienco, Dino; Botta, Marco

    The huge volume of gene expression data produced by microarrays and other high-throughput techniques has encouraged the development of new computational techniques to evaluate the data and to formulate new biological hypotheses. To this purpose, co-clustering techniques are widely used: these identify groups of genes that show similar activity patterns under a specific subset of the experimental conditions by measuring the similarity in expression within these groups. However, in many applications, distance metrics based only on expression levels fail in capturing biologically meaningful clusters.

  11. Uncoupling primer and releaser responses to pheromone in honey bees

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grozinger, Christina M.; Fischer, Patrick; Hampton, Jacob E.

    2007-05-01

    Pheromones produce dramatic behavioral and physiological responses in a wide variety of species. Releaser pheromones elicit rapid responses within seconds or minutes, while primer pheromones produce long-term changes which may take days to manifest. Honeybee queen mandibular pheromone (QMP) elicits multiple distinct behavioral and physiological responses in worker bees, as both a releaser and primer, and thus produces responses on vastly different time scales. In this study, we demonstrate that releaser and primer responses to QMP can be uncoupled. First, treatment with the juvenile hormone analog methoprene leaves a releaser response (attraction to QMP) intact, but modulates QMP’s primer effects on sucrose responsiveness. Secondly, two components of QMP (9-ODA and 9-HDA) do not elicit a releaser response (attraction) but are as effective as QMP at modulating a primer response, downregulation of foraging-related brain gene expression. These results suggest that different responses to a single pheromone may be produced via distinct pathways.

  12. The Biosynthetic Gene Cluster for Andrastin A in Penicillium roqueforti.

    PubMed

    Rojas-Aedo, Juan F; Gil-Durán, Carlos; Del-Cid, Abdiel; Valdés, Natalia; Álamos, Pamela; Vaca, Inmaculada; García-Rico, Ramón O; Levicán, Gloria; Tello, Mario; Chávez, Renato

    2017-01-01

    Penicillium roqueforti is a filamentous fungus involved in the ripening of several kinds of blue cheeses. In addition, this fungus produces several secondary metabolites, including the meroterpenoid compound andrastin A, a promising antitumoral compound. However, to date the genomic cluster responsible for the biosynthesis of this compound in P. roqueforti has not been described. In this work, we have sequenced and annotated a genomic region of approximately 29.4 kbp (named the adr gene cluster) that is involved in the biosynthesis of andrastin A in P. roqueforti. This region contains ten genes, named adrA, adrC, adrD, adrE, adrF, adrG, adrH, adrI, adrJ and adrK. Interestingly, the adrB gene previously found in the adr cluster from P. chrysogenum, was found as a residual pseudogene in the adr cluster from P. roqueforti. RNA-mediated gene silencing of each of the ten genes resulted in significant reductions in andrastin A production, confirming that all of them are involved in the biosynthesis of this compound. Of particular interest was the adrC gene, encoding for a major facilitator superfamily transporter. According to our results, this gene is required for the production of andrastin A but does not have any role in its secretion to the extracellular medium. The identification of the adr cluster in P. roqueforti will be important to understand the molecular basis of the production of andrastin A, and for the obtainment of strains of P. roqueforti overproducing andrastin A that might be of interest for the cheese industry.

  13. IGSA: Individual Gene Sets Analysis, including Enrichment and Clustering

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Lei; Ma, Hongzhe; Yang, Jingbo; Xie, Hongbo; Liu, Bo; Jin, Qing

    2016-01-01

    Analysis of gene sets has been widely applied in various high-throughput biological studies. One weakness in the traditional methods is that they neglect the heterogeneity of genes expressions in samples which may lead to the omission of some specific and important gene sets. It is also difficult for them to reflect the severities of disease and provide expression profiles of gene sets for individuals. We developed an application software called IGSA that leverages a powerful analytical capacity in gene sets enrichment and samples clustering. IGSA calculates gene sets expression scores for each sample and takes an accumulating clustering strategy to let the samples gather into the set according to the progress of disease from mild to severe. We focus on gastric, pancreatic and ovarian cancer data sets for the performance of IGSA. We also compared the results of IGSA in KEGG pathways enrichment with David, GSEA, SPIA, ssGSEA and analyzed the results of IGSA clustering and different similarity measurement methods. Notably, IGSA is proved to be more sensitive and specific in finding significant pathways, and can indicate related changes in pathways with the severity of disease. In addition, IGSA provides with significant gene sets profile for each sample. PMID:27764138

  14. IGSA: Individual Gene Sets Analysis, including Enrichment and Clustering.

    PubMed

    Wu, Lingxiang; Chen, Xiujie; Zhang, Denan; Zhang, Wubing; Liu, Lei; Ma, Hongzhe; Yang, Jingbo; Xie, Hongbo; Liu, Bo; Jin, Qing

    2016-01-01

    Analysis of gene sets has been widely applied in various high-throughput biological studies. One weakness in the traditional methods is that they neglect the heterogeneity of genes expressions in samples which may lead to the omission of some specific and important gene sets. It is also difficult for them to reflect the severities of disease and provide expression profiles of gene sets for individuals. We developed an application software called IGSA that leverages a powerful analytical capacity in gene sets enrichment and samples clustering. IGSA calculates gene sets expression scores for each sample and takes an accumulating clustering strategy to let the samples gather into the set according to the progress of disease from mild to severe. We focus on gastric, pancreatic and ovarian cancer data sets for the performance of IGSA. We also compared the results of IGSA in KEGG pathways enrichment with David, GSEA, SPIA, ssGSEA and analyzed the results of IGSA clustering and different similarity measurement methods. Notably, IGSA is proved to be more sensitive and specific in finding significant pathways, and can indicate related changes in pathways with the severity of disease. In addition, IGSA provides with significant gene sets profile for each sample.

  15. Evolutionary ecology of beta-lactam gene clusters in animals.

    PubMed

    Suring, Wouter; Meusemann, Karen; Blanke, Alexander; Mariën, Janine; Schol, Tim; Agamennone, Valeria; Faddeeva-Vakhrusheva, Anna; Berg, Matty P; Brouwer, Abraham; van Straalen, Nico M; Roelofs, Dick

    2017-06-01

    Beta-lactam biosynthesis was thought to occur only in fungi and bacteria, but we recently reported the presence of isopenicillin N synthase in a soil-dwelling animal, Folsomia candida. However, it has remained unclear whether this gene is part of a larger beta-lactam biosynthesis pathway and how widespread the occurrence of penicillin biosynthesis is among animals. Here, we analysed the distribution of beta-lactam biosynthesis genes throughout the animal kingdom and identified a beta-lactam gene cluster in the genome of F. candida (Collembola), consisting of isopenicillin N synthase (IPNS), δ-(L-α-aminoadipoyl)-L-cysteinyl-D-valine synthetase (ACVS), and two cephamycin C genes (cmcI and cmcJ) on a genomic scaffold of 0.76 Mb. All genes are transcriptionally active and are inducible by stress (heat shock). A beta-lactam compound was detected in vivo using an ELISA beta-lactam assay. The gene cluster also contains an ABC transporter which is coregulated with IPNS and ACVS after heat shock. Furthermore, we show that different combinations of beta-lactam biosynthesis genes are present in over 60% of springtail families, but they are absent from genome- and transcript libraries of other animals including close relatives of springtails (Protura, Diplura and insects). The presence of beta-lactam genes is strongly correlated with an euedaphic (soil-living) lifestyle. Beta-lactam genes IPNS and ACVS each form a phylogenetic clade in between bacteria and fungi, while cmcI and cmcJ genes cluster within bacteria. This suggests a single horizontal gene transfer event most probably from a bacterial host, followed by differential loss in more recently evolving species. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. The use of gene clusters to infer functional coupling

    PubMed Central

    Overbeek, Ross; Fonstein, Michael; D’Souza, Mark; Pusch, Gordon D.; Maltsev, Natalia

    1999-01-01

    Previously, we presented evidence that it is possible to predict functional coupling between genes based on conservation of gene clusters between genomes. With the rapid increase in the availability of prokaryotic sequence data, it has become possible to verify and apply the technique. In this paper, we extend our characterization of the parameters that determine the utility of the approach, and we generalize the approach in a way that supports detection of common classes of functionally coupled genes (e.g., transport and signal transduction clusters). Now that the analysis includes over 30 complete or nearly complete genomes, it has become clear that this approach will play a significant role in supporting efforts to assign functionality to the remaining uncharacterized genes in sequenced genomes. PMID:10077608

  17. Causes and consequences of variability in peptide mating pheromones of ascomycete fungi.

    PubMed

    Martin, Simon H; Wingfield, Brenda D; Wingfield, Michael J; Steenkamp, Emma T

    2011-07-01

    The reproductive genes of fungi, like those of many other organisms, are thought to diversify rapidly. This phenomenon could be associated with the formation of reproductive barriers and speciation. Ascomycetes produce two classes of mating type-specific peptide pheromones. These are required for recognition between the mating types of heterothallic species. Little is known regarding the diversity or the extent of species specificity in pheromone peptides among these fungi. We compared the putative protein-coding DNA sequences of the 2 pheromone classes from 70 species of Ascomycetes. The data set included previously described pheromones and putative pheromones identified from genomic sequences. In addition, pheromone genes from 12 Fusarium species in the Gibberella fujikuroi complex were amplified and sequenced. Pheromones were largely conserved among species in this complex and, therefore, cannot alone account for the reproductive barriers observed between these species. In contrast, pheromone peptides were highly diverse among many other Ascomycetes, with evidence for both positive diversifying selection and relaxed selective constraint. Repeats of the α-factor-like pheromone, which occur in tandem arrays of variable copy number, were found to be conserved through purifying selection and not concerted evolution. This implies that sequence specificity may be important for pheromone reception and that interspecific differences may indeed be associated with functional divergence. Our findings also suggest that frequent duplication and loss causes the tandem repeats to experience "birth-and-death" evolution, which could in fact facilitate interspecific divergence of pheromone peptide sequences.

  18. TRPC channels in pheromone sensing.

    PubMed

    Kiselyov, Kirill; van Rossum, Damian B; Patterson, Randen L

    2010-01-01

    Pheromone recognition relies on an amplification cascade that is triggered by pheromone binding to G protein-coupled receptors (GPCR). The first step in translation of GPCR activation by pheromones in the vomeronasal organ and main olfactory epithelium (MOE) into a cellular response is the activation of a transient receptor potential (TRP) family member, TRPC2 [Zufall, F., Ukhanov, K., Lucas, P., Liman, E. R., and Leinders-Zufall, T. (2005). Neurobiology of TRPC2: From gene to behavior. Pflugers Arch.451, 61-71; Yildirim, E., and Birnbaumer, L. (2007). TRPC2: Molecular biology and functional importance. Handb. Exp. Pharmacol. 53-75]. The members of the canonical (TRPC) family of TRP channels mediate membrane permeability, specifically, Ca(2+) influx into the cytoplasm in response to activation of GPCR and tyrosine kinase receptors by hormones, neurotransmitters, and growth factors [Nilius, B. (2007). TRP channels in disease. Biochim. Biophys. Acta1772, 805-812; Venkatachalam, K., and Montell, C. (2007). TRP channels. Annu. Rev. Biochem.76, 387-417]. Mechanisms of their activation have been the focus of intense interest during the last decade. The data obtained from studies of TRPC2 have resulted in a better understanding of ion channel physiology and led to novel paradigms in modern cell biology [Lucas, P., Ukhanov, K., Leinders-Zufall, T., and Zufall, F. (2003). A diacylglycerol-gated cation channel in vomeronasal neuron dendrites is impaired in TRPC2 mutant mice: Mechanism of pheromone transduction. Neuron40, 551-561; Stowers, L., Holy, T. E., Meister, M., Dulac, C., and Koentges, G. (2002). Loss of sex discrimination and male-male aggression in mice deficient for TRP2. Science295, 1493-1500; Leypold, B. G., Yu, C. R., Leinders-Zufall, T., Kim, M. M., Zufall, F., and Axel, R. (2002). Altered sexual and social behaviors in trp2 mutant mice. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA99, 6376-6381]. Although TRPC2 activation by pheromones presents one of the most straightforward

  19. Gene clustering by latent semantic indexing of MEDLINE abstracts.

    PubMed

    Homayouni, Ramin; Heinrich, Kevin; Wei, Lai; Berry, Michael W

    2005-01-01

    A major challenge in the interpretation of high-throughput genomic data is understanding the functional associations between genes. Previously, several approaches have been described to extract gene relationships from various biological databases using term-matching methods. However, more flexible automated methods are needed to identify functional relationships (both explicit and implicit) between genes from the biomedical literature. In this study, we explored the utility of Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI), a vector space model for information retrieval, to automatically identify conceptual gene relationships from titles and abstracts in MEDLINE citations. We found that LSI identified gene-to-gene and keyword-to-gene relationships with high average precision. In addition, LSI identified implicit gene relationships based on word usage patterns in the gene abstract documents. Finally, we demonstrate here that pairwise distances derived from the vector angles of gene abstract documents can be effectively used to functionally group genes by hierarchical clustering. Our results provide proof-of-principle that LSI is a robust automated method to elucidate both known (explicit) and unknown (implicit) gene relationships from the biomedical literature. These features make LSI particularly useful for the analysis of novel associations discovered in genomic experiments. The 50-gene document collection used in this study can be interactively queried at http://shad.cs.utk.edu/sgo/sgo.html.

  20. Gene Clusters, Molecular Evolution and Disease: A Speculation

    PubMed Central

    Elizondo, Leah I; Jafar-Nejad, Paymaan; Clewing, J. Marietta; Boerkoel, Cornelius F

    2009-01-01

    Traditionally eukaryotic genes are considered independently expressed under the control of their promoters and cis-regulatory domains. However, recent studies in worms, flies, mice and humans have shown that genes co-habiting a chromatin domain or “genomic neighborhood” are frequently co-expressed. Often these co-expressed genes neither constitute part of an operon nor function within the same biological pathway. The mechanisms underlying the partitioning of the genome into transcriptional genomic neighborhoods are poorly defined. However, cross-species analyses find that the linkage among the co-expressed genes of these clusters is significantly conserved and that the expression patterns of genes within clusters have coevolved with the clusters. Such selection could be mediated by chromatin interactions with the nuclear matrix and long-range remodeling of chromatin structure. In the context of human disease, we propose that dysregulation of gene expression across genomic neighborhoods will cause highly pleiotropic diseases. Candidate genomic neighborhood diseases include the nuclear laminopathies, chromosomal translocations and genomic instability disorders, imprinting disorders of errant insulator function, syndromes from impaired cohesin complex assembly, as well as diseases of global covalent histone modifications and DNA methylation. The alteration of transcriptional genomic neighborhoods provides an exciting and novel model for studying epigenetic alterations as quantitative traits in complex common human diseases. PMID:19721813

  1. Generalized gene adjacencies, graph bandwidth, and clusters in yeast evolution.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Qian; Adam, Zaky; Choi, Vicky; Sankoff, David

    2009-01-01

    We present a parameterized definition of gene clusters that allows us to control the emphasis placed on conserved order within a cluster. Though motivated by biological rather than mathematical considerations, this parameter turns out to be closely related to the bandwidth parameter of a graph. Our focus will be on how this parameter affects the characteristics of clusters: how numerous they are, how large they are, how rearranged they are, and to what extent they are preserved from ancestor to descendant in a phylogenetic tree. We infer the latter property by dynamic programming optimization of the presence of individual edges at the ancestral nodes of the phylogeny. We apply our analysis to a set of genomes drawn from the Yeast Gene Order Browser.

  2. Cloning and Heterologous Expression of the Grecocycline Biosynthetic Gene Cluster

    PubMed Central

    Bilyk, Oksana; Sekurova, Olga N.; Zotchev, Sergey B.; Luzhetskyy, Andriy

    2016-01-01

    Transformation-associated recombination (TAR) in yeast is a rapid and inexpensive method for cloning and assembly of large DNA fragments, which relies on natural homologous recombination. Two vectors, based on p15a and F-factor replicons that can be maintained in yeast, E. coli and streptomycetes have been constructed. These vectors have been successfully employed for assembly of the grecocycline biosynthetic gene cluster from Streptomyces sp. Acta 1362. Fragments of the cluster were obtained by PCR and transformed together with the “capture” vector into the yeast cells, yielding a construct carrying the entire gene cluster. The obtained construct was heterologously expressed in S. albus J1074, yielding several grecocycline congeners. Grecocyclines have unique structural moieties such as a dissacharide side chain, an additional amino sugar at the C-5 position and a thiol group. Enzymes from this pathway may be used for the derivatization of known active angucyclines in order to improve their desired biological properties. PMID:27410036

  3. Pheromone reception in mammals.

    PubMed

    Bigiani, A; Mucignat-Caretta, C; Montani, G; Tirindelli, R

    2005-01-01

    Pheromonal communication is the most convenient way to transfer information regarding gender and social status in animals of the same species with the holistic goal of sustaining reproduction. This type of information exchange is based on pheromones, molecules often chemically unrelated, that are contained in body fluids like urine, sweat, specialized exocrine glands, and mucous secretions of genitals. So profound is the relevance of pheromones over the evolutionary process that a specific peripheral organ devoted to their recognition, namely the vomeronasal organ of Jacobson, and a related central pathway arose in most vertebrate species. Although the vomeronasal system is well developed in reptiles and amphibians, most mammals strongly rely on pheromonal communication. Humans use pheromones too; evidence on the existence of a specialized organ for their detection, however, is very elusive indeed. In the present review, we will focus our attention on the behavioral, physiological, and molecular aspects of pheromone detection in mammals. We will discuss the responses to pheromonal stimulation in different animal species, emphasizing the complicacy of this type of communication. In the light of the most recent results, we will also discuss the complex organization of the transduction molecules that underlie pheromone detection and signal transmission from vomeronasal neurons to the higher centers of the brain. Communication is a primary feature of living organisms, allowing the coordination of different behavioral paradigms among individuals. Communication has evolved through a variety of different strategies, and each species refined its own preferred communication medium. From a phylogenetic point of view, the most widespread and ancient way of communication is through chemical signals named pheromones: it occurs in all taxa, from prokaryotes to eukaryotes. The release of specific pheromones into the environment is a sensitive and definite way to send messages to

  4. PEACE: Parallel Environment for Assembly and Clustering of Gene Expression.

    PubMed

    Rao, D M; Moler, J C; Ozden, M; Zhang, Y; Liang, C; Karro, J E

    2010-07-01

    We present PEACE, a stand-alone tool for high-throughput ab initio clustering of transcript fragment sequences produced by Next Generation or Sanger Sequencing technologies. It is freely available from www.peace-tools.org. Installed and managed through a downloadable user-friendly graphical user interface (GUI), PEACE can process large data sets of transcript fragments of length 50 bases or greater, grouping the fragments by gene associations with a sensitivity comparable to leading clustering tools. Once clustered, the user can employ the GUI's analysis functions, facilitating the easy collection of statistics and allowing them to single out specific clusters for more comprehensive study or assembly. Using a novel minimum spanning tree-based clustering method, PEACE is the equal of leading tools in the literature, with an interface making it accessible to any user. It produces results of quality virtually identical to those of the WCD tool when applied to Sanger sequences, significantly improved results over WCD and TGICL when applied to the products of Next Generation Sequencing Technology and significantly improved results over Cap3 in both cases. In short, PEACE provides an intuitive GUI and a feature-rich, parallel clustering engine that proves to be a valuable addition to the leading cDNA clustering tools.

  5. Pheromone Transduction in Moths

    PubMed Central

    Stengl, Monika

    2010-01-01

    Calling female moths attract their mates late at night with intermittent release of a species-specific sex-pheromone blend. Mean frequency of pheromone filaments encodes distance to the calling female. In their zig-zagging upwind search male moths encounter turbulent pheromone blend filaments at highly variable concentrations and frequencies. The male moth antennae are delicately designed to detect and distinguish even traces of these sex pheromones amongst the abundance of other odors. Its olfactory receptor neurons sense even single pheromone molecules and track intermittent pheromone filaments of highly variable frequencies up to about 30 Hz over a wide concentration range. In the hawkmoth Manduca sexta brief, weak pheromone stimuli as encountered during flight are detected via a metabotropic PLCβ-dependent signal transduction cascade which leads to transient changes in intracellular Ca2+ concentrations. Strong or long pheromone stimuli, which are possibly perceived in direct contact with the female, activate receptor-guanylyl cyclases causing long-term adaptation. In addition, depending on endogenous rhythms of the moth's physiological state, hormones such as the stress hormone octopamine modulate second messenger levels in sensory neurons. High octopamine levels during the activity phase maximize temporal resolution cAMP-dependently as a prerequisite to mate location. Thus, I suggest that sliding adjustment of odor response threshold and kinetics is based upon relative concentration ratios of intracellular Ca2+ and cyclic nucleotide levels which gate different ion channels synergistically. In addition, I propose a new hypothesis for the cyclic nucleotide-dependent ion channel formed by insect olfactory receptor/coreceptor complexes. Instead of being employed for an ionotropic mechanism of odor detection it is proposed to control subthreshold membrane potential oscillation of sensory neurons, as a basis for temporal encoding of odors. PMID:21228914

  6. Clustered Xenopus keratin genes: A genomic, transcriptomic, and proteomic analysis.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Ken-Ichi T; Suzuki, Miyuki; Shigeta, Mitsuki; Fortriede, Joshua D; Takahashi, Shuji; Mawaribuchi, Shuuji; Yamamoto, Takashi; Taira, Masanori; Fukui, Akimasa

    2017-06-15

    Keratin genes belong to the intermediate filament superfamily and their expression is altered following morphological and physiological changes in vertebrate epithelial cells. Keratin genes are divided into two groups, type I and II, and are clustered on vertebrate genomes, including those of Xenopus species. Various keratin genes have been identified and characterized by their unique expression patterns throughout ontogeny in Xenopus laevis; however, compilation of previously reported and newly identified keratin genes in two Xenopus species is required for our further understanding of keratin gene evolution, not only in amphibians but also in all terrestrial vertebrates. In this study, 120 putative type I and II keratin genes in total were identified based on the genome data from two Xenopus species. We revealed that most of these genes are highly clustered on two homeologous chromosomes, XLA9_10 and XLA2 in X. laevis, and XTR10 and XTR2 in X. tropicalis, which are orthologous to those of human, showing conserved synteny among tetrapods. RNA-Seq data from various embryonic stages and adult tissues highlighted the unique expression profiles of orthologous and homeologous keratin genes in developmental stage- and tissue-specific manners. Moreover, we identified dozens of epidermal keratin proteins from the whole embryo, larval skin, tail, and adult skin using shotgun proteomics. In light of our results, we discuss the radiation, diversification, and unique expression of the clustered keratin genes, which are closely related to epidermal development and terrestrial adaptation during amphibian evolution, including Xenopus speciation. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. An alanine tRNA gene cluster from Nephila clavipes.

    PubMed

    Luciano, E; Candelas, G C

    1996-06-01

    We report the sequence of a 2.3-kb genomic DNA fragment from the orb-web spider, Nephila clavipes (Nc). The fragment contains four regions of high homology to tRNA(Ala). The members of this irregularly spaced cluster of genes are oriented in the same direction and have the same anticodon (GCA), but their sequence differs at several positions. Initiation and termination signals, as well as consensus intragenic promoter sequences characteristic of tRNA genes, have been identified in all genes. tRNA(Ala) are involved in the regulation of the fibroin synthesis in the large ampullate Nc glands.

  8. Evolutionary conservation of regulatory elements in vertebrate HOX gene clusters

    SciTech Connect

    Santini, Simona; Boore, Jeffrey L.; Meyer, Axel

    2003-12-31

    Due to their high degree of conservation, comparisons of DNA sequences among evolutionarily distantly-related genomes permit to identify functional regions in noncoding DNA. Hox genes are optimal candidate sequences for comparative genome analyses, because they are extremely conserved in vertebrates and occur in clusters. We aligned (Pipmaker) the nucleotide sequences of HoxA clusters of tilapia, pufferfish, striped bass, zebrafish, horn shark, human and mouse (over 500 million years of evolutionary distance). We identified several highly conserved intergenic sequences, likely to be important in gene regulation. Only a few of these putative regulatory elements have been previously described as being involved in the regulation of Hox genes, while several others are new elements that might have regulatory functions. The majority of these newly identified putative regulatory elements contain short fragments that are almost completely conserved and are identical to known binding sites for regulatory proteins (Transfac). The conserved intergenic regions located between the most rostrally expressed genes in the developing embryo are longer and better retained through evolution. We document that presumed regulatory sequences are retained differentially in either A or A clusters resulting from a genome duplication in the fish lineage. This observation supports both the hypothesis that the conserved elements are involved in gene regulation and the Duplication-Deletion-Complementation model.

  9. Molecular switches for pheromone release from a moth pheromone-binding protein

    SciTech Connect

    Xu Wei; Leal, Walter S.

    2008-08-08

    Pheromone-binding proteins (PBPs) are involved in the uptake of pheromones from pores on the antennae, transport through an aqueous environment surrounding the olfactory receptor neurons, and fast delivery to pheromone receptors. We tested the hypothesis that a C-terminal segment and a flexible loop are involved in the release of pheromones to membrane-bound receptors. We expressed in Escherichia coli 11 mutants of the PBP from the silkworm moth, BmorPBP, taking into consideration structural differences between the forms with high and low binding affinity. The N-terminus was truncated and His-69, His-70 and His-95 at the base of a flexible loop, and a cluster of acidic residues at the C-terminus were mutated. Binding assays and circular dichroism analyses support a mechanism involving protonation of acidic residues Asp-132 and Glu-141 at the C-terminus and histidines, His-70 and His-95, in the base of a loop covering the binding pocket. The former leads to the formation of a new {alpha}-helix, which competes with pheromone for the binding pocket, whereas positive charge repulsion of the histidines opens the opposite side of the binding pocket.

  10. Expression profile based gene clusters for ischemic stroke detection.

    PubMed

    Adamski, Mateusz G; Li, Yan; Wagner, Erin; Yu, Hua; Seales-Bailey, Chloe; Soper, Steven A; Murphy, Michael; Baird, Alison E

    2014-09-01

    In microarray studies alterations in gene expression in circulating leukocytes have shown utility for ischemic stroke diagnosis. We studied forty candidate markers identified in three gene expression profiles to (1) quantitate individual transcript expression, (2) identify transcript clusters and (3) assess the clinical diagnostic utility of the clusters identified for ischemic stroke detection. Using high throughput next generation qPCR 16 of the 40 transcripts were significantly up-regulated in stroke patients relative to control subjects (p<0.05). Six clusters of between 5 and 7 transcripts were identified that discriminated between stroke and control (p values between 1.01e-9 and 0.03). A 7 transcript cluster containing PLBD1, PYGL, BST1, DUSP1, FOS, VCAN and FCGR1A showed high accuracy for stroke classification (AUC=0.854). These results validate and improve upon the diagnostic value of transcripts identified in microarray studies for ischemic stroke. The clusters identified show promise for acute ischemic stroke detection. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Multiscale mutation clustering algorithm identifies pan-cancer mutational clusters associated with pathway-level changes in gene expression.

    PubMed

    Poole, William; Leinonen, Kalle; Shmulevich, Ilya; Knijnenburg, Theo A; Bernard, Brady

    2017-02-01

    Cancer researchers have long recognized that somatic mutations are not uniformly distributed within genes. However, most approaches for identifying cancer mutations focus on either the entire-gene or single amino-acid level. We have bridged these two methodologies with a multiscale mutation clustering algorithm that identifies variable length mutation clusters in cancer genes. We ran our algorithm on 539 genes using the combined mutation data in 23 cancer types from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) and identified 1295 mutation clusters. The resulting mutation clusters cover a wide range of scales and often overlap with many kinds of protein features including structured domains, phosphorylation sites, and known single nucleotide variants. We statistically associated these multiscale clusters with gene expression and drug response data to illuminate the functional and clinical consequences of mutations in our clusters. Interestingly, we find multiple clusters within individual genes that have differential functional associations: these include PTEN, FUBP1, and CDH1. This methodology has potential implications in identifying protein regions for drug targets, understanding the biological underpinnings of cancer, and personalizing cancer treatments. Toward this end, we have made the mutation clusters and the clustering algorithm available to the public. Clusters and pathway associations can be interactively browsed at m2c.systemsbiology.net. The multiscale mutation clustering algorithm is available at https://github.com/IlyaLab/M2C.

  12. Multiscale mutation clustering algorithm identifies pan-cancer mutational clusters associated with pathway-level changes in gene expression

    PubMed Central

    Poole, William; Leinonen, Kalle; Shmulevich, Ilya

    2017-01-01

    Cancer researchers have long recognized that somatic mutations are not uniformly distributed within genes. However, most approaches for identifying cancer mutations focus on either the entire-gene or single amino-acid level. We have bridged these two methodologies with a multiscale mutation clustering algorithm that identifies variable length mutation clusters in cancer genes. We ran our algorithm on 539 genes using the combined mutation data in 23 cancer types from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) and identified 1295 mutation clusters. The resulting mutation clusters cover a wide range of scales and often overlap with many kinds of protein features including structured domains, phosphorylation sites, and known single nucleotide variants. We statistically associated these multiscale clusters with gene expression and drug response data to illuminate the functional and clinical consequences of mutations in our clusters. Interestingly, we find multiple clusters within individual genes that have differential functional associations: these include PTEN, FUBP1, and CDH1. This methodology has potential implications in identifying protein regions for drug targets, understanding the biological underpinnings of cancer, and personalizing cancer treatments. Toward this end, we have made the mutation clusters and the clustering algorithm available to the public. Clusters and pathway associations can be interactively browsed at m2c.systemsbiology.net. The multiscale mutation clustering algorithm is available at https://github.com/IlyaLab/M2C. PMID:28170390

  13. The Synthesis of Lepidoptera Pheromones

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matveeva, Elena D.; Kurts, A. L.; Bundel', Yurii G.

    1986-07-01

    The review surveys the data in numerous publications of the synthesis of the pheromones of scale-winged insects (Lepidoptera). Attention is concentrated on problems of the sterospecific synthesis of pheromones. The bibliography includes 217 references.

  14. Two fatty acyl reductases involved in moth pheromone biosynthesis

    PubMed Central

    Antony, Binu; Ding, Bao-Jian; Moto, Ken’Ichi; Aldosari, Saleh A.; Aldawood, Abdulrahman S.

    2016-01-01

    Fatty acyl reductases (FARs) constitute an evolutionarily conserved gene family found in all kingdoms of life. Members of the FAR gene family play diverse roles, including seed oil synthesis, insect pheromone biosynthesis, and mammalian wax biosynthesis. In insects, FAR genes dedicated to sex pheromone biosynthesis (pheromone-gland-specific fatty acyl reductase, pgFAR) form a unique clade that exhibits substantial modifications in gene structure and possesses unique specificity and selectivity for fatty acyl substrates. Highly selective and semi-selective ‘single pgFARs’ produce single and multicomponent pheromone signals in bombycid, pyralid, yponomeutid and noctuid moths. An intriguing question is how a ‘single reductase’ can direct the synthesis of several fatty alcohols of various chain lengths and isomeric forms. Here, we report two active pgFARs in the pheromone gland of Spodoptera, namely a semi-selective, C14:acyl-specific pgFAR and a highly selective, C16:acyl-specific pgFAR, and demonstrate that these pgFARs play a pivotal role in the formation of species-specific signals, a finding that is strongly supported by functional gene expression data. The study envisages a new area of research for disclosing evolutionary changes associated with C14- and C16-specific FARs in moth pheromone biosynthesis. PMID:27427355

  15. Time is of the essence for ParaHox homeobox gene clustering

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    ParaHox genes, and their evolutionary sisters the Hox genes, are integral to patterning the anterior-posterior axis of most animals. Like the Hox genes, ParaHox genes can be clustered and exhibit the phenomenon of colinearity - gene order within the cluster matching gene activation. Two new instances of ParaHox clustering provide the first examples of intact clusters outside chordates, with gene expression lending weight to the argument that temporal colinearity is the key to understanding clustering. See research articles: http://www.biomedcentral.com/1741-7007/11/68 and http://www.biomedcentral.com/1471-2148/13/129 PMID:23803337

  16. Combining gene annotations and gene expression data in model-based clustering: weighted method.

    PubMed

    Huang, Desheng; Wei, Peng; Pan, Wei

    2006-01-01

    It has been increasingly recognized that incorporating prior knowledge into cluster analysis can result in more reliable and meaningful clusters. In contrast to the standard modelbased clustering with a global mixture model, which does not use any prior information, a stratified mixture model was recently proposed to incorporate gene functions or biological pathways as priors in model-based clustering of gene expression profiles: various gene functional groups form the strata in a stratified mixture model. Albeit useful, the stratified method may be less efficient than the global analysis if the strata are non-informative to clustering. We propose a weighted method that aims to strike a balance between a stratified analysis and a global analysis: it weights between the clustering results of the stratified analysis and that of the global analysis; the weight is determined by data. More generally, the weighted method can take advantage of the hierarchical structure of most existing gene functional annotation systems, such as MIPS and Gene Ontology (GO), and facilitate choosing appropriate gene functional groups as priors. We use simulated data and real data to demonstrate the feasibility and advantages of the proposed method.

  17. Evolution of chemical diversity by coordinated gene swaps in type II polyketide gene clusters.

    PubMed

    Hillenmeyer, Maureen E; Vandova, Gergana A; Berlew, Erin E; Charkoudian, Louise K

    2015-11-10

    Natural product biosynthetic pathways generate molecules of enormous structural complexity and exquisitely tuned biological activities. Studies of natural products have led to the discovery of many pharmaceutical agents, particularly antibiotics. Attempts to harness the catalytic prowess of biosynthetic enzyme systems, for both compound discovery and engineering, have been limited by a poor understanding of the evolution of the underlying gene clusters. We developed an approach to study the evolution of biosynthetic genes on a cluster-wide scale, integrating pairwise gene coevolution information with large-scale phylogenetic analysis. We used this method to infer the evolution of type II polyketide gene clusters, tracing the path of evolution from the single ancestor to those gene clusters surviving today. We identified 10 key gene types in these clusters, most of which were swapped in from existing cellular processes and subsequently specialized. The ancestral type II polyketide gene cluster likely comprised a core set of five genes, a roster that expanded and contracted throughout evolution. A key C24 ancestor diversified into major classes of longer and shorter chain length systems, from which a C20 ancestor gave rise to the majority of characterized type II polyketide antibiotics. Our findings reveal that (i) type II polyketide structure is predictable from its gene roster, (ii) only certain gene combinations are compatible, and (iii) gene swaps were likely a key to evolution of chemical diversity. The lessons learned about how natural selection drives polyketide chemical innovation can be applied to the rational design and guided discovery of chemicals with desired structures and properties.

  18. Expression profile based gene clusters for ischemic stroke detection Whole blood gene clusters for ischemic stroke detection

    PubMed Central

    Adamski, Mateusz G; Li, Yan; Wagner, Erin; Yu, Hua; Seales-Bailey, Chloe; Soper, Steven A; Murphy, Michael; Baird, Alison E

    2014-01-01

    In microarray studies alterations in gene expression in circulating leukocytes have shown utility for ischemic stroke diagnosis. We studied forty candidate markers identified in three gene expression profiles to (1) quantitate individual transcript expression, (2) identify transcript clusters and (3) assess the clinical diagnostic utility of the clusters identified for ischemic stroke detection. Using high throughput next generation qPCR 16 of the 40 transcripts were significantly up-regulated in stroke patients relative to control subjects (p<0.05). Six clusters of between 5 and 7 transcripts discriminated between stroke and control (p values between 1.01e-9 and 0.03). A 7 transcript cluster containing PLBD1, PYGL, BST1, DUSP1, FOS, VCAN and FCGR1A showed high accuracy for stroke classification (AUC=0.854). These results validate and improve upon the diagnostic value of transcripts identified in microarray studies for ischemic stroke. The clusters identified show promise for acute ischemic stroke detection. PMID:25135788

  19. Laboratory Syntheses of Insect Pheromones.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cormier, Russell A.; Hoban, James N.

    1984-01-01

    Provides background information and procedures for the multi-step synthesis of tiger moth and boll weevil pheromones (sex attractants). These syntheses require several laboratory periods. The tiger moth pheromone synthesis is suitable for introductory organic chemistry while the boll weevil pheromone is recommended for an advanced laboratory…

  20. Volatile Hydrocarbon Pheromones from Beetles

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    This chapter reviews literature about hydrocarbons from beetles that serve as long-range pheromones. The most thoroughly studied beetles that use volatile hydrocarbon pheromones belong to the family Nitidulidae in the genera Carpophilus and Colopterus. Published pheromone research deals with behav...

  1. Laboratory Syntheses of Insect Pheromones.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cormier, Russell A.; Hoban, James N.

    1984-01-01

    Provides background information and procedures for the multi-step synthesis of tiger moth and boll weevil pheromones (sex attractants). These syntheses require several laboratory periods. The tiger moth pheromone synthesis is suitable for introductory organic chemistry while the boll weevil pheromone is recommended for an advanced laboratory…

  2. Transcription mediated insulation and interference direct gene cluster expression switches

    PubMed Central

    Nguyen, Tania; Brown, David; Murray, Struan C; Haenni, Simon; Halstead, James M; O'Connor, Leigh; Shipkovenska, Gergana; Steinmetz, Lars M; Mellor, Jane

    2014-01-01

    In yeast, many tandemly arranged genes show peak expression in different phases of the metabolic cycle (YMC) or in different carbon sources, indicative of regulation by a bi-modal switch, but it is not clear how these switches are controlled. Using native elongating transcript analysis (NET-seq), we show that transcription itself is a component of bi-modal switches, facilitating reciprocal expression in gene clusters. HMS2, encoding a growth-regulated transcription factor, switches between sense- or antisense-dominant states that also coordinate up- and down-regulation of transcription at neighbouring genes. Engineering HMS2 reveals alternative mono-, di- or tri-cistronic and antisense transcription units (TUs), using different promoter and terminator combinations, that underlie state-switching. Promoters or terminators are excluded from functional TUs by read-through transcriptional interference, while antisense TUs insulate downstream genes from interference. We propose that the balance of transcriptional insulation and interference at gene clusters facilitates gene expression switches during intracellular and extracellular environmental change. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.03635.001 PMID:25407679

  3. Transcription mediated insulation and interference direct gene cluster expression switches.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Tania; Fischl, Harry; Howe, Françoise S; Woloszczuk, Ronja; Serra Barros, Ana; Xu, Zhenyu; Brown, David; Murray, Struan C; Haenni, Simon; Halstead, James M; O'Connor, Leigh; Shipkovenska, Gergana; Steinmetz, Lars M; Mellor, Jane

    2014-11-19

    In yeast, many tandemly arranged genes show peak expression in different phases of the metabolic cycle (YMC) or in different carbon sources, indicative of regulation by a bi-modal switch, but it is not clear how these switches are controlled. Using native elongating transcript analysis (NET-seq), we show that transcription itself is a component of bi-modal switches, facilitating reciprocal expression in gene clusters. HMS2, encoding a growth-regulated transcription factor, switches between sense- or antisense-dominant states that also coordinate up- and down-regulation of transcription at neighbouring genes. Engineering HMS2 reveals alternative mono-, di- or tri-cistronic and antisense transcription units (TUs), using different promoter and terminator combinations, that underlie state-switching. Promoters or terminators are excluded from functional TUs by read-through transcriptional interference, while antisense TUs insulate downstream genes from interference. We propose that the balance of transcriptional insulation and interference at gene clusters facilitates gene expression switches during intracellular and extracellular environmental change.

  4. Identification of genes and gene clusters involved in mycotoxin synthesis

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Research methods to identify and characterize genes involved in mycotoxin biosynthetic pathways have evolved considerably over the years. Before whole genome sequences were available (e.g. pre-genomics), work focused primarily on chemistry, biosynthetic mutant strains and molecular analysis of sing...

  5. Transcriptional analysis of exopolysaccharides biosynthesis gene clusters in Lactobacillus plantarum.

    PubMed

    Vastano, Valeria; Perrone, Filomena; Marasco, Rosangela; Sacco, Margherita; Muscariello, Lidia

    2016-04-01

    Exopolysaccharides (EPS) from lactic acid bacteria contribute to specific rheology and texture of fermented milk products and find applications also in non-dairy foods and in therapeutics. Recently, four clusters of genes (cps) associated with surface polysaccharide production have been identified in Lactobacillus plantarum WCFS1, a probiotic and food-associated lactobacillus. These clusters are involved in cell surface architecture and probably in release and/or exposure of immunomodulating bacterial molecules. Here we show a transcriptional analysis of these clusters. Indeed, RT-PCR experiments revealed that the cps loci are organized in five operons. Moreover, by reverse transcription-qPCR analysis performed on L. plantarum WCFS1 (wild type) and WCFS1-2 (ΔccpA), we demonstrated that expression of three cps clusters is under the control of the global regulator CcpA. These results, together with the identification of putative CcpA target sequences (catabolite responsive element CRE) in the regulatory region of four out of five transcriptional units, strongly suggest for the first time a role of the master regulator CcpA in EPS gene transcription among lactobacilli.

  6. Reconstructing Histories of Complex Gene Clusters on a Phylogeny

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vinař, Tomáš; Brejová, Broňa; Song, Giltae; Siepel, Adam

    Clusters of genes that have evolved by repeated segmental duplication present difficult challenges throughout genomic analysis, from sequence assembly to functional analysis. These clusters are one of the major sources of evolutionary innovation, and they are linked to multiple diseases, including HIV and a variety of cancers. Understanding their evolutionary histories is a key to the application of comparative genomics methods in these regions of the genome. We propose a probabilistic model of gene cluster evolution on a phylogeny, and an MCMC algorithm for reconstruction of duplication histories from genomic sequences in multiple species. Several projects are underway to obtain high quality BAC-based assemblies of duplicated clusters in multiple species, and we anticipate use of our methods in their analysis. Supplementary materials are located at http://compbio.fmph.uniba.sk/suppl/09recombcg/

  7. Functional Analysis of the Fusarielin Biosynthetic Gene Cluster.

    PubMed

    Droce, Aida; Saei, Wagma; Jørgensen, Simon Hartung; Wimmer, Reinhard; Giese, Henriette; Wollenberg, Rasmus Dam; Sondergaard, Teis Esben; Sørensen, Jens Laurids

    2016-12-13

    Fusarielins are polyketides with a decalin core produced by various species of Aspergillus and Fusarium. Although the responsible gene cluster has been identified, the biosynthetic pathway remains to be elucidated. In the present study, members of the gene cluster were deleted individually in a Fusarium graminearum strain overexpressing the local transcription factor. The results suggest that a trans-acting enoyl reductase (FSL5) assists the polyketide synthase FSL1 in biosynthesis of a polyketide product, which is released by hydrolysis by a trans-acting thioesterase (FSL2). Deletion of the epimerase (FSL3) resulted in accumulation of an unstable compound, which could be the released product. A novel compound, named prefusarielin, accumulated in the deletion mutant of the cytochrome P450 monooxygenase FSL4. Unlike the known fusarielins from Fusarium, this compound does not contain oxygenized decalin rings, suggesting that FSL4 is responsible for the oxygenation.

  8. Cyclopiazonic acid biosynthesis gene cluster gene cpaM is required for speradine A biosynthesis.

    PubMed

    Tokuoka, Masafumi; Kikuchi, Tomoki; Shinohara, Yasutomo; Koyama, Akifumi; Iio, Shin-Ichiro; Kubota, Takaaki; Kobayashi, Jun'ichi; Koyama, Yasuji; Totsuka, Akira; Shindo, Hitoshi; Sato, Kazuo

    2015-01-01

    Speradine A is a derivative of cyclopiazonic acid (CPA) found in culture of an Aspergillus tamarii isolate. Heterologous expression of a predicted methyltransferase gene, cpaM, in the cpa biosynthesis gene cluster of A. tamarii resulted in the speradine A production in a 2-oxoCPA producing A. oryzae strain, indicating cpaM is involved in the speradine A biosynthesis.

  9. Antennally mediated negative feedback regulation of pheromone production in the pine engraver beetle, Ips pini

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ginzel, Matthew D.; Bearfield, Jeremy C.; Keeling, Christopher I.; McCormack, Colin C.; Blomquist, Gary J.; Tittiger, Claus

    2007-01-01

    Bark beetles use monoterpenoid aggregation pheromones to coordinate host colonization and mating. These chemical signals are produced de novo in midgut cells via the mevalonate pathway, and pheromone production may be regulated by a negative feedback system mediated through the antennae. In this study, we explored the effect of antennectomy on pheromone production and transcript levels of key mevalonate pathway genes in juvenile hormone III-treated male pine engraver beetles, Ips pini (Say). Antennectomized males produced significantly greater amounts of pheromone than podectomized males and those with intact antennae. Likewise, mRNA levels of three mevalonate pathway genes important in pheromone biosynthesis were measured by quantitative real-time PCR and found to be induced to a greater extent with antennectomy, suggesting a transcriptional regulation of pheromone production.

  10. Pheromones in social wasps.

    PubMed

    Claudia, Bruschini; Rita, Cervo; Stefano, Turillazzi

    2010-01-01

    Social wasps need an efficient communication system to coordinate their members in the numerous activities of the colony. In this regard, the chemical channel is the most utilized by social wasps to transfer information in intraspecific (pheromones) and interspecific (allomones) communication. In this chapter, we reviewed the main chemical substances which mediate recognition between colony members and coordinate nest defense, alarm and recruitment. Due to their central role in the colonial life, the majority of pheromones have been identified and their functions have been deeply investigated in many species. On the contrary, sex pheromones which are the most studied in insects, have been quite neglected in social wasps. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Analysis of lamprey clustered Fox genes: insight into Fox gene evolution and expression in vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Wotton, Karl R; Shimeld, Sebastian M

    2011-12-01

    In the human genome, members of the FoxC, FoxF, FoxL1, and FoxQ1 gene families are found in two paralagous clusters. One cluster contains the genes FOXQ1, FOXF2, FOXC1 and the second consists of FOXF1, FOXC2, and FOXL1. In jawed vertebrates these genes are known to be expressed in different pharyngeal tissues and all, except FoxQ1, are involved in patterning the early embryonic mesoderm. We have previously traced the evolution of this cluster in the bony vertebrates, and the gene content is identical in the dogfish, a member of the most basally branching lineage of the jawed vertebrates. Here we extend these analyses to jawless vertebrates. Using genomic searches and molecular approaches we have identified homologues of these genes from lampreys. We identify two FoxC genes, two FoxF genes, two FoxQ1 genes and single FoxL1 gene. We examine the embryonic expression of one predominantly mesodermally expressed gene family, FoxC, and the endodermally expressed member of the cluster, FoxQ1. We identified FoxQ1 transcripts in the pharyngeal endoderm, while the two FoxC genes are differentially expressed in the pharyngeal mesenchyme and ectoderm. Furthermore we identify conserved expression of lamprey FoxC genes in the paraxial and intermediate mesoderms. We interpret our results through a chordate-wide comparison of expression patterns and discuss gene content in the context of theories on the evolution of the vertebrate genome.

  12. Genetic evidence for the coexistence of pheromone perception and full trichromatic vision in howler monkeys.

    PubMed

    Webb, David M; Cortés-Ortiz, Liliana; Zhang, Jianzhi

    2004-04-01

    Vertebrate pheromones are water-soluble chemicals perceived mainly by the vomeronasal organ (VNO) for intraspecific communications. Humans, apes, and Old World (OW) monkeys lack functional genes responsible for the pheromone signal transduction and are generally insensitive to vomeronasal pheromones. It has been hypothesized that the evolutionary deterioration of pheromone sensitivity occurred because pheromone communication became redundant after the emergence of full trichromatic color vision via the duplication of the X-chromosome-linked red/green opsin gene in the common ancestor of hominoids and OW monkeys. Interestingly, full trichromacy also evolved in the New World (NW) howler monkeys via an independent duplication of the same gene. Here we sequenced from three species of howler monkeys an essential component of the VNO pheromone transduction pathway, the gene encoding the ion channel TRP2. In contrast to those of hominoids and OW monkeys, the howler TRP2 sequences have none of the characteristics of pseudogenes. This and other observations indicate that howler monkeys have maintained both their systems of pheromone communication and full trichromatic vision, suggesting that the presence of full trichromacy alone does not lead to the loss of pheromone communication. We suggest that the ecological differences between OW and NW primates, particularly in habitat selection, may have also affected the evolution of pheromone perception.

  13. Pheromone Autodetection: Evidence and Implications

    PubMed Central

    Holdcraft, Robert; Rodriguez-Saona, Cesar; Stelinski, Lukasz L.

    2016-01-01

    Olfactory communication research with insects utilizing sex pheromones has focused on the effects of pheromones on signal receivers. Early pheromone detection studies using the silkworm moth, Bombyx mori L., and Saturniids led to the assumption that emitters, especially females, are unable to detect their own pheromone. Pheromone anosmia, i.e., the inability of females to detect their conspecific sex pheromone, was often assumed, and initially little attention was paid to female behaviors that may result from autodetection, i.e., the ability of females to detect their sex pheromone. Detection of conspecific pheromone plumes from nearby females may provide information to improve chances of mating success and progeny survival. Since the first documented example in 1972, numerous occurrences of autodetection have been observed and verified in field and laboratory studies. We summarize here a significant portion of research relating to autodetection. Electrophysiological and behavioral investigations, as well as expression patterns of proteins involved in pheromone autodetection are included. We discuss problems inherent in defining a boundary between sex and aggregation pheromones considering the occurrence of autodetection, and summarize hypothesized selection pressures favoring autodetection. Importance of including autodetection studies in future work is emphasized by complications arising from a lack of knowledge combined with expanding the use of pheromones in agriculture. PMID:27120623

  14. Comparative genomic analysis of sixty mycobacteriophage genomes: Genome clustering, gene acquisition and gene size

    PubMed Central

    Hatfull, Graham F.; Jacobs-Sera, Deborah; Lawrence, Jeffrey G.; Pope, Welkin H.; Russell, Daniel A.; Ko, Ching-Chung; Weber, Rebecca J.; Patel, Manisha C.; Germane, Katherine L.; Edgar, Robert H.; Hoyte, Natasha N.; Bowman, Charles A.; Tantoco, Anthony T.; Paladin, Elizabeth C.; Myers, Marlana S.; Smith, Alexis L.; Grace, Molly S.; Pham, Thuy T.; O'Brien, Matthew B.; Vogelsberger, Amy M.; Hryckowian, Andrew J.; Wynalek, Jessica L.; Donis-Keller, Helen; Bogel, Matt W.; Peebles, Craig L.; Cresawn, Steve G.; Hendrix, Roger W.

    2010-01-01

    Mycobacteriophages are viruses that infect mycobacterial hosts. Expansion of a collection of sequenced phage genomes to a total of sixty – all infecting a common bacterial host – provides further insight into their diversity and evolution. Of the sixty phage genomes, 55 can be grouped into nine clusters according to their nucleotide sequence similarities, five of which can be further divided into subclusters; five genomes do not cluster with other phages. The sequence diversity between genomes within a cluster varies greatly; for example, the six genomes in cluster D share more than 97.5% average nucleotide similarity with each other. In contrast, similarity between the two genomes in Cluster I is barely detectable by diagonal plot analysis. The total of 6,858 predicted ORFs have been grouped into 1523 phamilies (phams) of related sequences, 46% of which possess only a single member. Only 18.8% of the phams have sequence similarity to non-mycobacteriophage database entries and fewer than 10% of all phams can be assigned functions based on database searching or synteny. Genome clustering facilitates the identification of genes that are in greatest genetic flux and are more likely to have been exchanged horizontally in relatively recent evolutionary time. Although mycobacteriophage genes exhibit smaller average size than genes of their host (205 residues compared to 315), phage genes in higher flux average only ∼100 amino acids, suggesting that the primary units of genetic exchange correspond to single protein domains. PMID:20064525

  15. Horizontal transfer of a large and highly toxic secondary metabolic gene cluster between fungi.

    PubMed

    Slot, Jason C; Rokas, Antonis

    2011-01-25

    Genes involved in intermediary and secondary metabolism in fungi are frequently physically linked or clustered. For example, in Aspergillus nidulans the entire pathway for the production of sterigmatocystin (ST), a highly toxic secondary metabolite and a precursor to the aflatoxins (AF), is located in a ∼54 kb, 23 gene cluster. We discovered that a complete ST gene cluster in Podospora anserina was horizontally transferred from Aspergillus. Phylogenetic analysis shows that most Podospora cluster genes are adjacent to or nested within Aspergillus cluster genes, although the two genera belong to different taxonomic classes. Furthermore, the Podospora cluster is highly conserved in content, sequence, and microsynteny with the Aspergillus ST/AF clusters and its intergenic regions contain 14 putative binding sites for AflR, the transcription factor required for activation of the ST/AF biosynthetic genes. Examination of ∼52,000 Podospora expressed sequence tags identified transcripts for 14 genes in the cluster, with several expressed at multiple life cycle stages. The presence of putative AflR-binding sites and the expression evidence for several cluster genes, coupled with the recent independent discovery of ST production in Podospora [1], suggest that this HGT event probably resulted in a functional cluster. Given the abundance of metabolic gene clusters in fungi, our finding that one of the largest known metabolic gene clusters moved intact between species suggests that such transfers might have significantly contributed to fungal metabolic diversity. PAPERFLICK:

  16. Transcriptional Analysis of Essential Genes of the Escherichia coli Fatty Acid Biosynthesis Gene Cluster by Functional Replacement with the Analogous Salmonella typhimurium Gene Cluster

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yan; Cronan, John E.

    1998-01-01

    The genes encoding several key fatty acid biosynthetic enzymes (called the fab cluster) are clustered in the order plsX-fabH-fabD-fabG-acpP-fabF at min 24 of the Escherichia coli chromosome. A difficulty in analysis of the fab cluster by the polar allele duplication approach (Y. Zhang and J. E. Cronan, Jr., J. Bacteriol. 178:3614–3620, 1996) is that several of these genes are essential for the growth of E. coli. We overcame this complication by use of the fab gene cluster of Salmonella typhimurium, a close relative of E. coli, to provide functions necessary for growth. The S. typhimurium fab cluster was isolated by complementation of an E. coli fabD mutant and was found to encode proteins with >94% homology to those of E. coli. However, the S. typhimurium sequences cannot recombine with the E. coli sequences required to direct polar allele duplication via homologous recombination. Using this approach, we found that although approximately 60% of the plsX transcripts initiate at promoters located far upstream and include the upstream rpmF ribosomal protein gene, a promoter located upstream of the plsX coding sequence (probably within the upstream gene, rpmF) is sufficient for normal growth. We have also found that the fabG gene is obligatorily cotranscribed with upstream genes. Insertion of a transcription terminator cassette (Ω-Cm cassette) between the fabD and fabG genes of the E. coli chromosome abolished fabG transcription and blocked cell growth, thus providing the first indication that fabG is an essential gene. Insertion of the Ω-Cm cassette between fabH and fabD caused greatly decreased transcription of the fabD and fabG genes and slower cellular growth, indicating that fabD has only a weak promoter(s). PMID:9642179

  17. Discovery of a widely distributed toxin biosynthetic gene cluster

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Shaun W.; Mitchell, Douglas A.; Markley, Andrew L.; Hensler, Mary E.; Gonzalez, David; Wohlrab, Aaron; Dorrestein, Pieter C.; Nizet, Victor; Dixon, Jack E.

    2008-01-01

    Bacteriocins represent a large family of ribosomally produced peptide antibiotics. Here we describe the discovery of a widely conserved biosynthetic gene cluster for the synthesis of thiazole and oxazole heterocycles on ribosomally produced peptides. These clusters encode a toxin precursor and all necessary proteins for toxin maturation and export. Using the toxin precursor peptide and heterocycle-forming synthetase proteins from the human pathogen Streptococcus pyogenes, we demonstrate the in vitro reconstitution of streptolysin S activity. We provide evidence that the synthetase enzymes, as predicted from our bioinformatics analysis, introduce heterocycles onto precursor peptides, thereby providing molecular insight into the chemical structure of streptolysin S. Furthermore, our studies reveal that the synthetase exhibits relaxed substrate specificity and modifies toxin precursors from both related and distant species. Given our findings, it is likely that the discovery of similar peptidic toxins will rapidly expand to existing and emerging genomes. PMID:18375757

  18. Gene clusters reflecting macrodomain structure respond to nucleoid perturbations.

    PubMed

    Scolari, Vittore F; Bassetti, Bruno; Sclavi, Bianca; Lagomarsino, Marco Cosentino

    2011-03-01

    Focusing on the DNA-bridging nucleoid proteins Fis and H-NS, and integrating several independent experimental and bioinformatic data sources, we investigate the links between chromosomal spatial organization and global transcriptional regulation. By means of a novel multi-scale spatial aggregation analysis, we uncover the existence of contiguous clusters of nucleoid-perturbation sensitive genes along the genome, whose expression is affected by a combination of topological DNA state and nucleoid-shaping protein occupancy. The clusters correlate well with the macrodomain structure of the genome. The most significant of them lay symmetrically at the edges of the Ter macrodomain and involve all of the flagellar and chemotaxis machinery, in addition to key regulators of biofilm formation, suggesting that the regulation of the physical state of the chromosome by the nucleoid proteins plays an important role in coordinating the transcriptional response leading to the switch between a motile and a biofilm lifestyle.

  19. Translating biosynthetic gene clusters into fungal armor and weaponry.

    PubMed

    Keller, Nancy P

    2015-09-01

    Filamentous fungi are renowned for the production of a diverse array of secondary metabolites (SMs) where the genetic material required for synthesis of a SM is typically arrayed in a biosynthetic gene cluster (BGC). These natural products are valued for their bioactive properties stemming from their functions in fungal biology, key among those protection from abiotic and biotic stress and establishment of a secure niche. The producing fungus must not only avoid self-harm from endogenous SMs but also deliver specific SMs at the right time to the right tissue requiring biochemical aid. This review highlights functions of BGCs beyond the enzymatic assembly of SMs, considering the timing and location of SM production and other proteins in the clusters that control SM activity. Specifically, self-protection is provided by both BGC-encoded mechanisms and non-BGC subcellular containment of toxic SM precursors; delivery and timing is orchestrated through cellular trafficking patterns and stress- and developmental-responsive transcriptional programs.

  20. Multi-stage filtering for improving confidence level and determining dominant clusters in clustering algorithms of gene expression data.

    PubMed

    Kasim, Shahreen; Deris, Safaai; Othman, Razib M

    2013-09-01

    A drastic improvement in the analysis of gene expression has lead to new discoveries in bioinformatics research. In order to analyse the gene expression data, fuzzy clustering algorithms are widely used. However, the resulting analyses from these specific types of algorithms may lead to confusion in hypotheses with regard to the suggestion of dominant function for genes of interest. Besides that, the current fuzzy clustering algorithms do not conduct a thorough analysis of genes with low membership values. Therefore, we present a novel computational framework called the "multi-stage filtering-Clustering Functional Annotation" (msf-CluFA) for clustering gene expression data. The framework consists of four components: fuzzy c-means clustering (msf-CluFA-0), achieving dominant cluster (msf-CluFA-1), improving confidence level (msf-CluFA-2) and combination of msf-CluFA-0, msf-CluFA-1 and msf-CluFA-2 (msf-CluFA-3). By employing double filtering in msf-CluFA-1 and apriori algorithms in msf-CluFA-2, our new framework is capable of determining the dominant clusters and improving the confidence level of genes with lower membership values by means of which the unknown genes can be predicted. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. EasyCluster: a fast and efficient gene-oriented clustering tool for large-scale transcriptome data

    PubMed Central

    Picardi, Ernesto; Mignone, Flavio; Pesole, Graziano

    2009-01-01

    Background ESTs and full-length cDNAs represent an invaluable source of evidence for inferring reliable gene structures and discovering potential alternative splicing events. In newly sequenced genomes, these tasks may not be practicable owing to the lack of appropriate training sets. However, when expression data are available, they can be used to build EST clusters related to specific genomic transcribed loci. Common strategies recently employed to this end are based on sequence similarity between transcripts and can lead, in specific conditions, to inconsistent and erroneous clustering. In order to improve the cluster building and facilitate all downstream annotation analyses, we developed a simple genome-based methodology to generate gene-oriented clusters of ESTs when a genomic sequence and a pool of related expressed sequences are provided. Our procedure has been implemented in the software EasyCluster and takes into account the spliced nature of ESTs after an ad hoc genomic mapping. Methods EasyCluster uses the well-known GMAP program in order to perform a very quick EST-to-genome mapping in addition to the detection of reliable splice sites. Given a genomic sequence and a pool of ESTs/FL-cDNAs, EasyCluster starts building genomic and EST local databases and runs GMAP. Subsequently, it parses results creating an initial collection of pseudo-clusters by grouping ESTs according to the overlap of their genomic coordinates on the same strand. In the final step, EasyCluster refines the clustering by again running GMAP on each pseudo-cluster and groups together ESTs sharing at least one splice site. Results The higher accuracy of EasyCluster with respect to other clustering tools has been verified by means of a manually cured benchmark of human EST clusters. Additional datasets including the Unigene cluster Hs.122986 and ESTs related to the human HOXA gene family have also been used to demonstrate the better clustering capability of EasyCluster over current genome

  2. Mating disruption of Lobesia botrana (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae): effect of pheromone formulations and concentrations.

    PubMed

    Gordon, Dvora; Zahavi, Tirtza; Anshelevich, Leonid; Harel, Miriam; Ovadia, Shmulik; Dunkelblum, Ezra; Harari, Ally Rachel

    2005-02-01

    The reluctance of Israeli vine growers to adopt the mating disruption technique to control the moth Lobesia botrana Den. & Schiff. has been attributed to the high cost of this method compared with that of traditional insecticide control. In this study, we tested the possibility of reducing the cost, first by testing different pheromone formulations (and thus open the market for competition) and second by reducing the pheromone concentration used in vineyards. Comparisons were made between two pheromone formulations--Shin-Etsu (Tokyo, Japan) at 165 g/ha and Concep (Sutera, Bend, OR) at 150 g/ha--and between two concentrations of Shin-Etsu, 165 and 110 g/ha. Pheromone dispensers were placed at the onset of the second moth generation. Comparison of the numbers of clusters infested with eggs and larvae of L. botrana showed no significant differences in the performance, either between the two formulations, or between the two tested concentrations. The results suggest that 1) the two formulations are equally effective, and 2) a low pheromone concentration is sufficient to maintain good control of small populations of L. botrana. However, when the population is high, pest control efficacy is not improved by increasing the pheromone concentration. Therefore, in the interest of reducing the relatively high cost of mating disruption, we emphasize that increasing the pheromone concentration does not provide improved control of high populations of L. botrana. The cost of mating disruption can be diminished by reducing the applied pheromone concentration and by using the least expensive pheromone formulations

  3. Organization of a cluster of erythromycin genes in Saccharopolyspora erythraea.

    PubMed Central

    Weber, J M; Leung, J O; Maine, G T; Potenz, R H; Paulus, T J; DeWitt, J P

    1990-01-01

    We used a series of gene disruptions and gene replacements to mutagenically characterize 30 kilobases of DNA in the erythromycin resistance gene (ermE) region of the Saccharopolyspora erythraea chromosome. Five previously undiscovered loci involved in the biosynthesis of erythromycin were found, eryBI, eryBII, eryCI, eryCII, and eryH; and three known loci, eryAI, eryG, and ermE, were further characterized. The new Ery phenotype, EryH, was marked by (i) the accumulation of the intermediate 6-deoxyerythronolide B (DEB), suggesting a defect in the operation of the C-6 hydroxylase system, and (ii) a block in the synthesis or addition reactions for the first sugar group. Analyses of ermE mutants indicated that ermE is the only gene required for resistance to erythromycin, and that it is not required for production of the intermediate erythronolide B (EB) or for conversion of the intermediate 3-alpha-mycarosyl erythronolide B (MEB) to erythromycin. Mutations in the eryB and eryC loci were similar to previously reported chemically induced eryB and eryC mutations blocking synthesis or attachment of the two erythromycin sugar groups. Insertion mutations in eryAI, the macrolactone synthetase, defined the largest (at least 9-kilobase) transcription unit of the cluster. These mutants help to define the physical organization of the erythromycin gene cluster, and the eryH mutants provide a source for the production of the intermediate DEB. Images PMID:2185216

  4. Developmental expression and gene/enzyme identifications in the alpha esterase gene cluster of Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Campbell, P M; de Q Robin, G C; Court, L N; Dorrian, S J; Russell, R J; Oakeshott, J G

    2003-10-01

    Here we show how the 10 genes of the alpha esterase cluster of Drosophila melanogaster have diverged substantially in their expression profiles. Together with previously described sequence divergence this suggests substantial functional diversification. By peptide mass fingerprinting and in vitro gene expression we have also shown that two of the genes encode the isozymes EST9 (formerly ESTC) and EST23. EST9 is the major 'alpha staining' esterase in zymograms of gut tissues in feeding stages while orthologues of EST23 confer resistance to organophosphorus insecticides in other higher Diptera. The results for EST9 and EST23 concur with previous suggestions that the products of the alpha esterase cluster function in digestion and detoxification of xenobiotic esters. However, many of the other genes in the cluster show developmental or tissue-specific expression that seems inconsistent with such roles. Furthermore, there is generally poor correspondence between the mRNA expression patterns of the remaining eight genes and isozymes previously characterized by standard techniques of electrophoresis and staining, suggesting that the alpha cluster might only account for a small minority of the esterase isozyme profile.

  5. Toward Awakening Cryptic Secondary Metabolite Gene Clusters in Filamentous Fungi

    PubMed Central

    Lim, Fang Yun; Sanchez, James F.; Wang, Clay C.C.; Keller, Nancy P.

    2013-01-01

    Mining for novel natural compounds is of eminent importance owing to the continuous need for new pharmaceuticals. Filamentous fungi are historically known to harbor the genetic capacity for an arsenal of natural compounds, both beneficial and detrimental to humans. The majority of these metabolites are still cryptic or silent under standard laboratory culture conditions. Mining for these cryptic natural products can be an excellent source for identifying new compound classes. Capitalizing on the current knowledge on how secondary metabolite gene clusters are regulated has allowed the research community to unlock many hidden fungal treasures, as described in this chapter. PMID:23084945

  6. From hormones to secondary metabolism: the emergence of metabolic gene clusters in plants.

    PubMed

    Chu, Hoi Yee; Wegel, Eva; Osbourn, Anne

    2011-04-01

    Gene clusters for the synthesis of secondary metabolites are a common feature of microbial genomes. Well-known examples include clusters for the synthesis of antibiotics in actinomycetes, and also for the synthesis of antibiotics and toxins in filamentous fungi. Until recently it was thought that genes for plant metabolic pathways were not clustered, and this is certainly true in many cases; however, five plant secondary metabolic gene clusters have now been discovered, all of them implicated in synthesis of defence compounds. An obvious assumption might be that these eukaryotic gene clusters have arisen by horizontal gene transfer from microbes, but there is compelling evidence to indicate that this is not the case. This raises intriguing questions about how widespread such clusters are, what the significance of clustering is, why genes for some metabolic pathways are clustered and those for others are not, and how these clusters form. In answering these questions we may hope to learn more about mechanisms of genome plasticity and adaptive evolution in plants. It is noteworthy that for the five plant secondary metabolic gene clusters reported so far, the enzymes for the first committed steps all appear to have been recruited directly or indirectly from primary metabolic pathways involved in hormone synthesis. This may or may not turn out to be a common feature of plant secondary metabolic gene clusters as new clusters emerge.

  7. Expression patterns and binding properties of three pheromone binding proteins in the diamondback moth, Plutella xyllotella.

    PubMed

    Sun, Mengjing; Liu, Yang; Wang, Guirong

    2013-01-01

    Pheromone binding proteins (PBPs) play a key role in transporting hydrophobic sex pheromone components emitted by con-specific female across aqueous sensillar lymph to the surface of olfactory receptor neurons. A number of PBPs have been cloned, however, details of their function are still largely unknown. Here three pheromone binding protein genes in the diamondback moth, Plutella xyllotella were cloned. The three PxylPBP genes are not only expressed in chemosensory tissues but also expressed in female reproductive organs and male legs. To better understand the functions of PxylPBPs in the initial steps of pheromone recognition, three PxylPBPs were expressed in Escherichia coli and the ligand-binding specificities of purified recombinant PBPs were investigated. Fluorescence binding assays indicate that three PxylPBPs not only robustly bound all four sex pheromone components but also significantly bound pheromone analogs with at least one double bond, while weakly bound tested plant volatiles. Although pheromone analogs bound PBPs, they could not elicit the moth's electrophysiological response. These experiments provide evidence that PxylPBPs have limited selectivity of pheromone components and analogs and some downstream components such as odor receptors might be involved in selectivity and specificity of pheromone perception in P. xyllotella.

  8. Molecular Characterization of Neurally Expressing Genes in the Para Sodium Channel Gene Cluster of Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Hong, C. S.; Ganetzky, B.

    1996-01-01

    To elucidate the mechanisms regulating expression of para, which encodes the major class of sodium channels in the Drosophila nervous system, we have tried to locate upstream cis-acting regulatory elements by mapping the transcriptional start site and analyzing the region immediately upstream of para in region 14D of the polytene chromosomes. From these studies, we have discovered that the region contains a cluster of neurally expressing genes. Here we report the molecular characterization of the genomic organization of the 14D region and the genes within this region, which are: calnexin (Cnx), actin related protein 14D (Arp14D), calcineurin A 14D (CnnA14D), and chromosome associated protein (Cap). The tight clustering of these genes, their neuronal expression patterns, and their potential functions related to expression, modulation, or regulation of sodium channels raise the possibility that these genes represent a functionally related group sharing some coordinate regulatory mechanism. PMID:8849894

  9. Evolutionary formation of gene clusters by reorganization: the meleagrin/roquefortine paradigm in different fungi.

    PubMed

    Martín, Juan F; Liras, Paloma

    2016-02-01

    The biosynthesis of secondary metabolites in fungi is catalyzed by enzymes encoded by genes linked in clusters that are frequently co-regulated at the transcriptional level. Formation of gene clusters may take place by de novo assembly of genes recruited from other cellular functions, but also novel gene clusters are formed by reorganization of progenitor clusters and are distributed by horizontal gene transfer. This article reviews (i) the published information on the roquefortine/meleagrin/neoxaline gene clusters of Penicillium chrysogenum (Penicillium rubens) and the short roquefortine cluster of Penicillium roqueforti, and (ii) the correlation of the genes present in those clusters with the enzymes and metabolites derived from these pathways. The P. chrysogenum roq/mel cluster consists of seven genes and includes a gene (roqT) encoding a 12-TMS transporter protein of the MFS family. Interestingly, the orthologous P. roquefortine gene cluster has only four genes and the roqT gene is present as a residual pseudogene that encodes only small peptides. Two of the genes present in the central region of the P. chrysogenum roq/mel cluster have been lost during the evolutionary formation of the short cluster and the order of the structural genes in the cluster has been rearranged. The two lost genes encode a N1 atom hydroxylase (nox) and a roquefortine scaffold-reorganizing oxygenase (sro). As a consequence P. roqueforti has lost the ability to convert the roquefortine-type carbon skeleton to the glandicoline/meleagrin-type scaffold and is unable to produce glandicoline B, meleagrin and neoxaline. The loss of this genetic information is not recent and occurred probably millions of years ago when a progenitor Penicillium strain got adapted to life in a few rich habitats such as cheese, fermented cereal grains or silage. P. roqueforti may be considered as a "domesticated" variant of a progenitor common to contemporary P. chrysogenum and related Penicillia.

  10. Functional clustering of time series gene expression data by Granger causality

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background A common approach for time series gene expression data analysis includes the clustering of genes with similar expression patterns throughout time. Clustered gene expression profiles point to the joint contribution of groups of genes to a particular cellular process. However, since genes belong to intricate networks, other features, besides comparable expression patterns, should provide additional information for the identification of functionally similar genes. Results In this study we perform gene clustering through the identification of Granger causality between and within sets of time series gene expression data. Granger causality is based on the idea that the cause of an event cannot come after its consequence. Conclusions This kind of analysis can be used as a complementary approach for functional clustering, wherein genes would be clustered not solely based on their expression similarity but on their topological proximity built according to the intensity of Granger causality among them. PMID:23107425

  11. Distribution and Genetic Diversity of Bacteriocin Gene Clusters in Rumen Microbial Genomes

    PubMed Central

    Azevedo, Analice C.; Bento, Cláudia B. P.; Ruiz, Jeronimo C.; Queiroz, Marisa V.

    2015-01-01

    Some species of ruminal bacteria are known to produce antimicrobial peptides, but the screening procedures have mostly been based on in vitro assays using standardized methods. Recent sequencing efforts have made available the genome sequences of hundreds of ruminal microorganisms. In this work, we performed genome mining of the complete and partial genome sequences of 224 ruminal bacteria and 5 ruminal archaea to determine the distribution and diversity of bacteriocin gene clusters. A total of 46 bacteriocin gene clusters were identified in 33 strains of ruminal bacteria. Twenty gene clusters were related to lanthipeptide biosynthesis, while 11 gene clusters were associated with sactipeptide production, 7 gene clusters were associated with class II bacteriocin production, and 8 gene clusters were associated with class III bacteriocin production. The frequency of strains whose genomes encode putative antimicrobial peptide precursors was 14.4%. Clusters related to the production of sactipeptides were identified for the first time among ruminal bacteria. BLAST analysis indicated that the majority of the gene clusters (88%) encoding putative lanthipeptides contained all the essential genes required for lanthipeptide biosynthesis. Most strains of Streptococcus (66.6%) harbored complete lanthipeptide gene clusters, in addition to an open reading frame encoding a putative class II bacteriocin. Albusin B-like proteins were found in 100% of the Ruminococcus albus strains screened in this study. The in silico analysis provided evidence of novel biosynthetic gene clusters in bacterial species not previously related to bacteriocin production, suggesting that the rumen microbiota represents an underexplored source of antimicrobial peptides. PMID:26253660

  12. Gene prioritization and clustering by multi-view text mining.

    PubMed

    Yu, Shi; Tranchevent, Leon-Charles; De Moor, Bart; Moreau, Yves

    2010-01-14

    Text mining has become a useful tool for biologists trying to understand the genetics of diseases. In particular, it can help identify the most interesting candidate genes for a disease for further experimental analysis. Many text mining approaches have been introduced, but the effect of disease-gene identification varies in different text mining models. Thus, the idea of incorporating more text mining models may be beneficial to obtain more refined and accurate knowledge. However, how to effectively combine these models still remains a challenging question in machine learning. In particular, it is a non-trivial issue to guarantee that the integrated model performs better than the best individual model. We present a multi-view approach to retrieve biomedical knowledge using different controlled vocabularies. These controlled vocabularies are selected on the basis of nine well-known bio-ontologies and are applied to index the vast amounts of gene-based free-text information available in the MEDLINE repository. The text mining result specified by a vocabulary is considered as a view and the obtained multiple views are integrated by multi-source learning algorithms. We investigate the effect of integration in two fundamental computational disease gene identification tasks: gene prioritization and gene clustering. The performance of the proposed approach is systematically evaluated and compared on real benchmark data sets. In both tasks, the multi-view approach demonstrates significantly better performance than other comparing methods. In practical research, the relevance of specific vocabulary pertaining to the task is usually unknown. In such case, multi-view text mining is a superior and promising strategy for text-based disease gene identification.

  13. Gene prioritization and clustering by multi-view text mining

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Text mining has become a useful tool for biologists trying to understand the genetics of diseases. In particular, it can help identify the most interesting candidate genes for a disease for further experimental analysis. Many text mining approaches have been introduced, but the effect of disease-gene identification varies in different text mining models. Thus, the idea of incorporating more text mining models may be beneficial to obtain more refined and accurate knowledge. However, how to effectively combine these models still remains a challenging question in machine learning. In particular, it is a non-trivial issue to guarantee that the integrated model performs better than the best individual model. Results We present a multi-view approach to retrieve biomedical knowledge using different controlled vocabularies. These controlled vocabularies are selected on the basis of nine well-known bio-ontologies and are applied to index the vast amounts of gene-based free-text information available in the MEDLINE repository. The text mining result specified by a vocabulary is considered as a view and the obtained multiple views are integrated by multi-source learning algorithms. We investigate the effect of integration in two fundamental computational disease gene identification tasks: gene prioritization and gene clustering. The performance of the proposed approach is systematically evaluated and compared on real benchmark data sets. In both tasks, the multi-view approach demonstrates significantly better performance than other comparing methods. Conclusions In practical research, the relevance of specific vocabulary pertaining to the task is usually unknown. In such case, multi-view text mining is a superior and promising strategy for text-based disease gene identification. PMID:20074336

  14. The pheromone response factor coordinates filamentous growth and pathogenicity in Ustilago maydis.

    PubMed Central

    Hartmann, H A; Kahmann, R; Bölker, M

    1996-01-01

    In Ustilago maydis, the a and b mating type loci regulate cell fusion, filamentous growth and pathogenicity. The a locus encodes a pheromone-based cell recognition system, and the b locus specifies two homeodomain proteins. The expression of all genes in the a and b loci is induced by pheromone. We have identified a HMG protein (Prf1) that binds sequence specifically to pheromone response elements present in the a and b loci. prf1 mutants do not express the a and b genes and are sterile. The disruption of prf1 in pathogenic haploid strains results in a loss of pathogenicity. The constitutive expression of the b genes restores pathogenicity and induces filamentous growth in the absence of the pheromone signal. These results provide evidence that pheromone signalling, filamentous growth and pathogenic development are linked through Prf1. Images PMID:8612587

  15. Gravitation field algorithm and its application in gene cluster

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Searching optima is one of the most challenging tasks in clustering genes from available experimental data or given functions. SA, GA, PSO and other similar efficient global optimization methods are used by biotechnologists. All these algorithms are based on the imitation of natural phenomena. Results This paper proposes a novel searching optimization algorithm called Gravitation Field Algorithm (GFA) which is derived from the famous astronomy theory Solar Nebular Disk Model (SNDM) of planetary formation. GFA simulates the Gravitation field and outperforms GA and SA in some multimodal functions optimization problem. And GFA also can be used in the forms of unimodal functions. GFA clusters the dataset well from the Gene Expression Omnibus. Conclusions The mathematical proof demonstrates that GFA could be convergent in the global optimum by probability 1 in three conditions for one independent variable mass functions. In addition to these results, the fundamental optimization concept in this paper is used to analyze how SA and GA affect the global search and the inherent defects in SA and GA. Some results and source code (in Matlab) are publicly available at http://ccst.jlu.edu.cn/CSBG/GFA. PMID:20854683

  16. Gravitation field algorithm and its application in gene cluster.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Ming; Liu, Gui-Xia; Zhou, Chun-Guang; Liang, Yan-Chun; Wang, Yan

    2010-09-20

    Searching optima is one of the most challenging tasks in clustering genes from available experimental data or given functions. SA, GA, PSO and other similar efficient global optimization methods are used by biotechnologists. All these algorithms are based on the imitation of natural phenomena. This paper proposes a novel searching optimization algorithm called Gravitation Field Algorithm (GFA) which is derived from the famous astronomy theory Solar Nebular Disk Model (SNDM) of planetary formation. GFA simulates the Gravitation field and outperforms GA and SA in some multimodal functions optimization problem. And GFA also can be used in the forms of unimodal functions. GFA clusters the dataset well from the Gene Expression Omnibus. The mathematical proof demonstrates that GFA could be convergent in the global optimum by probability 1 in three conditions for one independent variable mass functions. In addition to these results, the fundamental optimization concept in this paper is used to analyze how SA and GA affect the global search and the inherent defects in SA and GA. Some results and source code (in Matlab) are publicly available at http://ccst.jlu.edu.cn/CSBG/GFA.

  17. Characterisation of the gene cluster for L-rhamnose catabolism in the yeast Scheffersomyces (Pichia) stipitis

    Treesearch

    Outi M. Koivistoinen; Mikko Arvas; Jennifer R. Headman; Martina Andberg; Merja Penttilä; Thomas W. Jeffries; Peter Richard

    2012-01-01

    In Scheffersomyces (Pichia) stipitis and related fungal species the genes for L-rhamnose catabolism RHA1, LRA2, LRA3 and LRA4 but not LADH are clustered. We find that located next to the cluster is a transcription...

  18. Phenotypic plasticity in sex pheromone production in Bicyclus anynana butterflies

    PubMed Central

    Dion, Emilie; Monteiro, Antónia; Yew, Joanne Y.

    2016-01-01

    Phenotypic plasticity refers to the environmental control of phenotypes. Cues experienced during development (developmental plasticity) or during adulthood (acclimatization) can both affect adult phenotypes. Phenotypic plasticity has been described in many traits but examples of developmental plasticity in physiological traits, in particular, remain scarce. We examined developmental plasticity and acclimatization in pheromone production in the butterfly Bicyclus anynana in response to rearing temperature. B. anynana lives in the African tropics where warm rearing temperatures of the wet season produce active males that court and females that choose, whereas cooler temperatures of the dry season lead to choosy less active males and courting females. We hypothesized that if male pheromone production is costly, it should be reduced in the dry season form. After describing the ultrastructure of pheromone producing cells, we showed that dry season males produced significantly less sex pheromones than wet season males, partly due to acclimatization and partly due to developmental plasticity. Variation in levels of one of the compounds is associated with differential regulation of a pheromone biosynthetic enzyme gene. This plasticity might be an adaptation to minimize pheromone production costs during the stressful dry season. PMID:27966579

  19. Phenotypic plasticity in sex pheromone production in Bicyclus anynana butterflies.

    PubMed

    Dion, Emilie; Monteiro, Antónia; Yew, Joanne Y

    2016-12-14

    Phenotypic plasticity refers to the environmental control of phenotypes. Cues experienced during development (developmental plasticity) or during adulthood (acclimatization) can both affect adult phenotypes. Phenotypic plasticity has been described in many traits but examples of developmental plasticity in physiological traits, in particular, remain scarce. We examined developmental plasticity and acclimatization in pheromone production in the butterfly Bicyclus anynana in response to rearing temperature. B. anynana lives in the African tropics where warm rearing temperatures of the wet season produce active males that court and females that choose, whereas cooler temperatures of the dry season lead to choosy less active males and courting females. We hypothesized that if male pheromone production is costly, it should be reduced in the dry season form. After describing the ultrastructure of pheromone producing cells, we showed that dry season males produced significantly less sex pheromones than wet season males, partly due to acclimatization and partly due to developmental plasticity. Variation in levels of one of the compounds is associated with differential regulation of a pheromone biosynthetic enzyme gene. This plasticity might be an adaptation to minimize pheromone production costs during the stressful dry season.

  20. Arrangement of the Clostridium baratii F7 Toxin Gene Cluster with Identification of a σ Factor That Recognizes the Botulinum Toxin Gene Cluster Promoters

    SciTech Connect

    Dover, Nir; Barash, Jason R.; Burke, Julianne N.; Hill, Karen K.; Detter, John C.; Arnon, Stephen S.

    2014-05-22

    Botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) is the most poisonous substances known and its eight toxin types (A to H) are distinguished by the inability of polyclonal antibodies that neutralize one toxin type to neutralize any of the other seven toxin types. Infant botulism, an intestinal toxemia orphan disease, is the most common form of human botulism in the United States. It results from swallowed spores of Clostridium botulinum (or rarely, neurotoxigenic Clostridium butyricum or Clostridium baratii) that germinate and temporarily colonize the lumen of the large intestine, where, as vegetative cells, they produce botulinum toxin. Botulinum neurotoxin is encoded by the bont gene that is part of a toxin gene cluster that includes several accessory genes. In this paper, we sequenced for the first time the complete botulinum neurotoxin gene cluster of nonproteolytic C. baratii type F7. Like the type E and the nonproteolytic type F6 botulinum toxin gene clusters, the C. baratii type F7 had an orfX toxin gene cluster that lacked the regulatory botR gene which is found in proteolytic C. botulinum strains and codes for an alternative σ factor. In the absence of botR, we identified a putative alternative regulatory gene located upstream of the C. baratii type F7 toxin gene cluster. This putative regulatory gene codes for a predicted σ factor that contains DNA-binding-domain homologues to the DNA-binding domains both of BotR and of other members of the TcdR-related group 5 of the σ70 family that are involved in the regulation of toxin gene expression in clostridia. We showed that this TcdR-related protein in association with RNA polymerase core enzyme specifically binds to the C. baratii type F7 botulinum toxin gene cluster promoters. Finally, this TcdR-related protein may therefore be involved in regulating the expression of the genes of the botulinum toxin gene cluster in neurotoxigenic C. baratii.

  1. Arrangement of the Clostridium baratii F7 Toxin Gene Cluster with Identification of a σ Factor That Recognizes the Botulinum Toxin Gene Cluster Promoters

    PubMed Central

    Dover, Nir; Barash, Jason R.; Burke, Julianne N.; Hill, Karen K.; Detter, John C.; Arnon, Stephen S.

    2014-01-01

    Botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) is the most poisonous substances known and its eight toxin types (A to H) are distinguished by the inability of polyclonal antibodies that neutralize one toxin type to neutralize any of the other seven toxin types. Infant botulism, an intestinal toxemia orphan disease, is the most common form of human botulism in the United States. It results from swallowed spores of Clostridium botulinum (or rarely, neurotoxigenic Clostridium butyricum or Clostridium baratii) that germinate and temporarily colonize the lumen of the large intestine, where, as vegetative cells, they produce botulinum toxin. Botulinum neurotoxin is encoded by the bont gene that is part of a toxin gene cluster that includes several accessory genes. We sequenced for the first time the complete botulinum neurotoxin gene cluster of nonproteolytic C. baratii type F7. Like the type E and the nonproteolytic type F6 botulinum toxin gene clusters, the C. baratii type F7 had an orfX toxin gene cluster that lacked the regulatory botR gene which is found in proteolytic C. botulinum strains and codes for an alternative σ factor. In the absence of botR, we identified a putative alternative regulatory gene located upstream of the C. baratii type F7 toxin gene cluster. This putative regulatory gene codes for a predicted σ factor that contains DNA-binding-domain homologues to the DNA-binding domains both of BotR and of other members of the TcdR-related group 5 of the σ70 family that are involved in the regulation of toxin gene expression in clostridia. We showed that this TcdR-related protein in association with RNA polymerase core enzyme specifically binds to the C. baratii type F7 botulinum toxin gene cluster promoters. This TcdR-related protein may therefore be involved in regulating the expression of the genes of the botulinum toxin gene cluster in neurotoxigenic C. baratii. PMID:24853378

  2. Arrangement of the Clostridium baratii F7 toxin gene cluster with identification of a σ factor that recognizes the botulinum toxin gene cluster promoters.

    PubMed

    Dover, Nir; Barash, Jason R; Burke, Julianne N; Hill, Karen K; Detter, John C; Arnon, Stephen S

    2014-01-01

    Botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) is the most poisonous substances known and its eight toxin types (A to H) are distinguished by the inability of polyclonal antibodies that neutralize one toxin type to neutralize any of the other seven toxin types. Infant botulism, an intestinal toxemia orphan disease, is the most common form of human botulism in the United States. It results from swallowed spores of Clostridium botulinum (or rarely, neurotoxigenic Clostridium butyricum or Clostridium baratii) that germinate and temporarily colonize the lumen of the large intestine, where, as vegetative cells, they produce botulinum toxin. Botulinum neurotoxin is encoded by the bont gene that is part of a toxin gene cluster that includes several accessory genes. We sequenced for the first time the complete botulinum neurotoxin gene cluster of nonproteolytic C. baratii type F7. Like the type E and the nonproteolytic type F6 botulinum toxin gene clusters, the C. baratii type F7 had an orfX toxin gene cluster that lacked the regulatory botR gene which is found in proteolytic C. botulinum strains and codes for an alternative σ factor. In the absence of botR, we identified a putative alternative regulatory gene located upstream of the C. baratii type F7 toxin gene cluster. This putative regulatory gene codes for a predicted σ factor that contains DNA-binding-domain homologues to the DNA-binding domains both of BotR and of other members of the TcdR-related group 5 of the σ70 family that are involved in the regulation of toxin gene expression in clostridia. We showed that this TcdR-related protein in association with RNA polymerase core enzyme specifically binds to the C. baratii type F7 botulinum toxin gene cluster promoters. This TcdR-related protein may therefore be involved in regulating the expression of the genes of the botulinum toxin gene cluster in neurotoxigenic C. baratii.

  3. Parallel evolutionary events in the haptoglobin gene clusters of rhesus monkey and human

    SciTech Connect

    Erickson, L.M.; Maeda, N.

    1994-08-01

    Parallel occurrences of evolutionary events in the haptoglobin gene clusters of rhesus monkeys and humans were studied. We found six different haplotypes among 11 individuals from two rhesus monkey families. The six haplotypes include two types of haptoglobin gene clusters: one type with a single gene and the other with two genes. DNA sequence analysis indicates that the one-gene and the two-gene clusters were both formed by unequal homologous crossovers between two genes of an ancestral three-gene cluster, near exon 5, the longest exon of the gene. This exon is also the location where a separate unequal homologous crossover occured in the human lineage, forming the human two-gene haptoglobin gene cluster from an ancestral three-gene cluster. The occurrence of independent homologous unequal crossovers in rhesus monkey and in human within the same region of DNA suggests that the evolutionary history of the haptoglobin gene cluster in primates is the consequence of frequent homologous pairings facilitated by the longest and most conserved exon of the gene. 27 refs., 7 figs., 1 tab.

  4. Identification of the cluster control region for the protocadherin-beta genes located beyond the protocadherin-gamma cluster.

    PubMed

    Yokota, Shinnichi; Hirayama, Teruyoshi; Hirano, Keizo; Kaneko, Ryosuke; Toyoda, Shunsuke; Kawamura, Yoshimi; Hirabayashi, Masumi; Hirabayashi, Takahiro; Yagi, Takeshi

    2011-09-09

    The clustered protocadherins (Pcdhs), Pcdh-α, -β, and -γ, are transmembrane proteins constituting a subgroup of the cadherin superfamily. Each Pcdh cluster is arranged in tandem on the same chromosome. Each of the three Pcdh clusters shows stochastic and combinatorial expression in individual neurons, thus generating a hugely diverse set of possible cell surface molecules. Therefore, the clustered Pcdhs are candidates for determining neuronal molecular diversity. Here, we showed that the targeted deletion of DNase I hypersensitive (HS) site HS5-1, previously identified as a Pcdh-α regulatory element in vitro, affects especially the expression of specific Pcdh-α isoforms in vivo. We also identified a Pcdh-β cluster control region (CCR) containing six HS sites (HS16, 17, 17', 18, 19, and 20) downstream of the Pcdh-γ cluster. This CCR comprehensively activates the expression of the Pcdh-β gene cluster in cis, and its deletion dramatically decreases their expression levels. Deleting the CCR nonuniformly down-regulates some Pcdh-γ isoforms and does not affect Pcdh-α expression. Thus, the CCR effect extends beyond the 320-kb region containing the Pcdh-γ cluster to activate the upstream Pcdh-β genes. Thus, we concluded that the CCR is a highly specific regulatory unit for Pcdh-β expression on the clustered Pcdh genomic locus. These findings suggest that each Pcdh cluster is controlled by distinct regulatory elements that activate their expression and that the stochastic gene regulation of the clustered Pcdhs is controlled by the complex chromatin architecture of the clustered Pcdh locus.

  5. Identification of the Cluster Control Region for the Protocadherin-β Genes Located beyond the Protocadherin-γ Cluster*

    PubMed Central

    Yokota, Shinnichi; Hirayama, Teruyoshi; Hirano, Keizo; Kaneko, Ryosuke; Toyoda, Shunsuke; Kawamura, Yoshimi; Hirabayashi, Masumi; Hirabayashi, Takahiro; Yagi, Takeshi

    2011-01-01

    The clustered protocadherins (Pcdhs), Pcdh-α, -β, and -γ, are transmembrane proteins constituting a subgroup of the cadherin superfamily. Each Pcdh cluster is arranged in tandem on the same chromosome. Each of the three Pcdh clusters shows stochastic and combinatorial expression in individual neurons, thus generating a hugely diverse set of possible cell surface molecules. Therefore, the clustered Pcdhs are candidates for determining neuronal molecular diversity. Here, we showed that the targeted deletion of DNase I hypersensitive (HS) site HS5-1, previously identified as a Pcdh-α regulatory element in vitro, affects especially the expression of specific Pcdh-α isoforms in vivo. We also identified a Pcdh-β cluster control region (CCR) containing six HS sites (HS16, 17, 17′, 18, 19, and 20) downstream of the Pcdh-γ cluster. This CCR comprehensively activates the expression of the Pcdh-β gene cluster in cis, and its deletion dramatically decreases their expression levels. Deleting the CCR nonuniformly down-regulates some Pcdh-γ isoforms and does not affect Pcdh-α expression. Thus, the CCR effect extends beyond the 320-kb region containing the Pcdh-γ cluster to activate the upstream Pcdh-β genes. Thus, we concluded that the CCR is a highly specific regulatory unit for Pcdh-β expression on the clustered Pcdh genomic locus. These findings suggest that each Pcdh cluster is controlled by distinct regulatory elements that activate their expression and that the stochastic gene regulation of the clustered Pcdhs is controlled by the complex chromatin architecture of the clustered Pcdh locus. PMID:21771796

  6. Nucleotide polymorphism in colicin E2 gene clusters: evidence for nonneutral evolution.

    PubMed

    Tan, Y; Riley, M A

    1997-06-01

    To explore the molecular mechanisms behind the diversification of colicin gene clusters, we examined DNA sequence polymorphism for the colicin gene clusters of 14 colicin E2 (ColE2) plasmids obtained from natural isolates of Escherichia coli. Two types of ColE2 plasmids are revealed, with type II gene clusters generated by recombination between type I ColE2 and ColE7 gene clusters. The levels and patterns of DNA polymorphism are different between the two types. Type I polymorphism is distributed evenly along the gene cluster, while type II accumulates polymorphism at an elevated rate in the 5' end of the colicin gene. These differences may be explained by recombinational origins of type II gene clusters. The pattern of divergence between the ColE2 gene cluster and its close relative ColE9 is not correlated with the pattern of polymorphism within ColE2, suggesting that this gene cluster is not evolving in a neutral fashion. A statistical test confirms significant departures from the predictions of neutrality. These data lend further support to the hypothesis that colicin gene clusters may evolve under the influence of nonneutral forces.

  7. Polyketide and nonribosomal peptide retro-biosynthesis and global gene cluster matching.

    PubMed

    Dejong, Chris A; Chen, Gregory M; Li, Haoxin; Johnston, Chad W; Edwards, Mclean R; Rees, Philip N; Skinnider, Michael A; Webster, Andrew L H; Magarvey, Nathan A

    2016-12-01

    Polyketides (PKs) and nonribosomal peptides (NRPs) are profoundly important natural products, forming the foundations of many therapeutic regimes. Decades of research have revealed over 11,000 PK and NRP structures, and genome sequencing is uncovering new PK and NRP gene clusters at an unprecedented rate. However, only ∼10% of PK and NRPs are currently associated with gene clusters, and it is unclear how many of these orphan gene clusters encode previously isolated molecules. Therefore, to efficiently guide the discovery of new molecules, we must first systematically de-orphan emergent gene clusters from genomes. Here we provide to our knowledge the first comprehensive retro-biosynthetic program, generalized retro-biosynthetic assembly prediction engine (GRAPE), for PK and NRP families and introduce a computational pipeline, global alignment for natural products cheminformatics (GARLIC), to uncover how observed biosynthetic gene clusters relate to known molecules, leading to the identification of gene clusters that encode new molecules.

  8. Conditional Deletion of ERK5 MAP Kinase in the Nervous System Impairs Pheromone Information Processing and Pheromone-Evoked Behaviors

    PubMed Central

    Zou, Junhui; Storm, Daniel R.; Xia, Zhengui

    2013-01-01

    ERK5 MAP kinase is highly expressed in the developing nervous system but absent in most regions of the adult brain. It has been implicated in regulating the development of the main olfactory bulb and in odor discrimination. However, whether it plays an essential role in pheromone-based behavior has not been established. Here we report that conditional deletion of the Mapk7 gene which encodes ERK5 in mice in neural stem cells impairs several pheromone-mediated behaviors including aggression and mating in male mice. These deficits were not caused by a reduction in the level of testosterone, by physical immobility, by heightened fear or anxiety, or by depression. Using mouse urine as a natural pheromone-containing solution, we provide evidence that the behavior impairment was associated with defects in the detection of closely related pheromones as well as with changes in their innate preference for pheromones related to sexual and reproductive activities. We conclude that expression of ERK5 during development is critical for pheromone response and associated animal behavior in adult mice. PMID:24130808

  9. The Yeast ATF1 Acetyltransferase Efficiently Acetylates Insect Pheromone Alcohols: Implications for the Biological Production of Moth Pheromones.

    PubMed

    Ding, Bao-Jian; Lager, Ida; Bansal, Sunil; Durrett, Timothy P; Stymne, Sten; Löfstedt, Christer

    2016-04-01

    Many moth pheromones are composed of mixtures of acetates of long-chain (≥10 carbon) fatty alcohols. Moth pheromone precursors such as fatty acids and fatty alcohols can be produced in yeast by the heterologous expression of genes involved in insect pheromone production. Acetyltransferases that subsequently catalyze the formation of acetates by transfer of the acetate unit from acetyl-CoA to a fatty alcohol have been postulated in pheromone biosynthesis. However, so far no fatty alcohol acetyltransferases responsible for the production of straight chain alkyl acetate pheromone components in insects have been identified. In search for a non-insect acetyltransferase alternative, we expressed a plant-derived diacylglycerol acetyltransferase (EaDAcT) (EC 2.3.1.20) cloned from the seed of the burning bush (Euonymus alatus) in a yeast system. EaDAcT transformed various fatty alcohol insect pheromone precursors into acetates but we also found high background acetylation activities. Only one enzyme in yeast was shown to be responsible for the majority of that background activity, the acetyltransferase ATF1 (EC 2.3.1.84). We further investigated the usefulness of ATF1 for the conversion of moth pheromone alcohols into acetates in comparison with Ea DAcT. Overexpression of ATF1 revealed that it was capable of acetylating these fatty alcohols with chain lengths from 10 to 18 carbons with up to 27- and 10-fold higher in vivo and in vitro efficiency, respectively, compared to Ea DAcT. The ATF1 enzyme thus has the potential to serve as the missing enzyme in the reconstruction of the biosynthetic pathway of insect acetate pheromones from precursor fatty acids in yeast.

  10. Barrier activity in Candida albicans mediates pheromone degradation and promotes mating.

    PubMed

    Schaefer, Dana; Côte, Pierre; Whiteway, Malcolm; Bennett, Richard J

    2007-06-01

    Mating in Candida albicans and Saccharomyces cerevisiae is regulated by the secretion of peptide pheromones that initiate the mating process. An important regulator of pheromone activity in S. cerevisiae is barrier activity, involving an extracellular aspartyl protease encoded by the BAR1 gene that degrades the alpha pheromone. We have characterized an equivalent barrier activity in C. albicans and demonstrate that the loss of C. albicans BAR1 activity results in opaque a cells exhibiting hypersensitivity to alpha pheromone. Hypersensitivity to pheromone is clearly seen in halo assays; in response to alpha pheromone, a lawn of C. albicans Deltabar1 mutant cells produces a marked zone in which cell growth is inhibited, whereas wild-type strains fail to show halo formation. C. albicans mutants lacking BAR1 also exhibit a striking mating defect in a cells, but not in alpha cells, due to overstimulation of the response to alpha pheromone. The block to mating occurs prior to cell fusion, as very few mating zygotes were observed in mixes of Deltabar1 a and alpha cells. Finally, in a barrier assay using a highly pheromone-sensitive strain, we were able to demonstrate that barrier activity in C. albicans is dependent on Bar1p. These studies reveal that a barrier activity to alpha pheromone exists in C. albicans and that the activity is analogous to that caused by Bar1p in S. cerevisiae.

  11. Lampreys have a single gene cluster for the fast skeletal myosin heavy chain gene family.

    PubMed

    Ikeda, Daisuke; Ono, Yosuke; Hirano, Shigeki; Kan-no, Nobuhiro; Watabe, Shugo

    2013-01-01

    Muscle tissues contain the most classic sarcomeric myosin, called myosin II, which consists of 2 heavy chains (MYHs) and 4 light chains. In the case of humans (tetrapod), a total of 6 fast skeletal-type MYH genes (MYHs) are clustered on a single chromosome. In contrast, torafugu (teleost) contains at least 13 fast skeletal MYHs, which are distributed in 5 genomic regions; the MYHs are clustered in 3 of these regions. In the present study, the evolutionary relationship among fast skeletal MYHs is elucidated by comparing the MYHs of teleosts and tetrapods with those of cyclostome lampreys, one of two groups of extant jawless vertebrates (agnathans). We found that lampreys contain at least 3 fast skeletal MYHs, which are clustered in a head-to-tail manner in a single genomic region. Although there was apparent synteny in the corresponding MYH cluster regions between lampreys and tetrapods, phylogenetic analysis indicated that lamprey and tetrapod MYHs have independently duplicated and diversified. Subsequent transgenic approaches showed that the 5'-flanking sequences of Japanese lamprey fast skeletal MYHs function as a regulatory sequence to drive specific reporter gene expression in the fast skeletal muscle of zebrafish embryos. Although zebrafish MYH promoters showed apparent activity to direct reporter gene expression in myogenic cells derived from mice, promoters from Japanese lamprey MYHs had no activity. These results suggest that the muscle-specific regulatory mechanisms are partially conserved between teleosts and tetrapods but not between cyclostomes and tetrapods, despite the conserved synteny.

  12. Lampreys Have a Single Gene Cluster for the Fast Skeletal Myosin Heavy Chain Gene Family

    PubMed Central

    Ikeda, Daisuke; Ono, Yosuke; Hirano, Shigeki; Kan-no, Nobuhiro; Watabe, Shugo

    2013-01-01

    Muscle tissues contain the most classic sarcomeric myosin, called myosin II, which consists of 2 heavy chains (MYHs) and 4 light chains. In the case of humans (tetrapod), a total of 6 fast skeletal-type MYH genes (MYHs) are clustered on a single chromosome. In contrast, torafugu (teleost) contains at least 13 fast skeletal MYHs, which are distributed in 5 genomic regions; the MYHs are clustered in 3 of these regions. In the present study, the evolutionary relationship among fast skeletal MYHs is elucidated by comparing the MYHs of teleosts and tetrapods with those of cyclostome lampreys, one of two groups of extant jawless vertebrates (agnathans). We found that lampreys contain at least 3 fast skeletal MYHs, which are clustered in a head-to-tail manner in a single genomic region. Although there was apparent synteny in the corresponding MYH cluster regions between lampreys and tetrapods, phylogenetic analysis indicated that lamprey and tetrapod MYHs have independently duplicated and diversified. Subsequent transgenic approaches showed that the 5′-flanking sequences of Japanese lamprey fast skeletal MYHs function as a regulatory sequence to drive specific reporter gene expression in the fast skeletal muscle of zebrafish embryos. Although zebrafish MYH promoters showed apparent activity to direct reporter gene expression in myogenic cells derived from mice, promoters from Japanese lamprey MYHs had no activity. These results suggest that the muscle-specific regulatory mechanisms are partially conserved between teleosts and tetrapods but not between cyclostomes and tetrapods, despite the conserved synteny. PMID:24376886

  13. Do cnidarians have a ParaHox cluster? Analysis of synteny around a Nematostella homeobox gene cluster.

    PubMed

    Hui, Jerome H L; Holland, Peter W H; Ferrier, David E K

    2008-01-01

    The Hox gene cluster is renowned for its role in developmental patterning of embryogenesis along the anterior-posterior axis of bilaterians. Its supposed evolutionary sister or paralog, the ParaHox cluster, is composed of Gsx, Xlox, and Cdx, and also has important roles in anterior-posterior development. There is a debate as to whether the cnidarians, as an outgroup to bilaterians, contain true Hox and ParaHox genes, or instead the Hox-like gene complement of cnidarians arose from independent duplications to those that generated the genes of the bilaterian Hox and ParaHox clusters. A recent whole genome analysis of the cnidarian Nematostella vectensis found conserved synteny between this cnidarian and vertebrates, including a region of synteny between the putative Hox cluster of N. vectensis and the Hox clusters of vertebrates. No syntenic region was identified around a potential cnidarian ParaHox cluster. Here we use different approaches to identify a genomic region in N. vectensis that is syntenic with the bilaterian ParaHox cluster. This proves that the duplication that gave rise to the Hox and ParaHox regions of bilaterians occurred before the origin of cnidarians, and the cnidarian N. vectensis has bona fide Hox and ParaHox loci.

  14. Proteomic and UTR analyses of a rapidly evolving hypervariable family of vertebrate pheromones.

    PubMed

    Wilburn, Damien B; Bowen, Kathleen E; Gregg, Ronald G; Cai, Jian; Feldhoff, Pamela W; Houck, Lynne D; Feldhoff, Richard C

    2012-07-01

    During the annual mating season, the mental gland of male plethodontid salamanders diverts its protein synthesizing capacity to the production of courtship pheromones that increase female receptivity. Plethodontid modulating factor (PMF), a highly disulfide-bonded 7-kDa pheromone, shows unusual hypervariability with each male expressing >30 isoforms. Twenty-eight PMFs were purified and matched by proteomic analyses to cDNA sequences. In contrast to coding sequence hypervariability, the untranslated regions (UTRs) show extraordinary conservation, no predicted microRNA binding sites, and an overlapping triplet polyadenylation signal. Full-length cDNA sequencing revealed three PMF gene classes containing subclasses of clustered sequences that support ≥ 13 PMF gene duplications. The unusual phenomena of hypervariable coding regions embedded within extremely conserved UTRs is proposed to occur by a disjunctive evolutionary process. During the short courtship season, the UTRs are hypothesized to subsume and coordinate the transcriptional and translational regulatory mechanisms of the mental gland. PMF, as a secreted protein with limited metabolic feedback in the male, is under minimal mutational restraint and thus has experienced highly accelerated rates of evolution. Consequently, plethodontid salamanders may provide a unique model for furthering our understanding of the selective forces that determine differential rates of gene duplication and evolution in protein families. © 2012 The Author(s).

  15. Divisive Correlation Clustering Algorithm (DCCA) for grouping of genes: detecting varying patterns in expression profiles.

    PubMed

    Bhattacharya, Anindya; De, Rajat K

    2008-06-01

    Cluster analysis (of gene-expression data) is a useful tool for identifying biologically relevant groups of genes that show similar expression patterns under multiple experimental conditions. Various methods have been proposed for clustering gene-expression data. However most of these algorithms have several shortcomings for gene-expression data clustering. In the present article, we focus on several shortcomings of conventional clustering algorithms and propose a new one that is able to produce better clustering solution than that produced by some others. We present the Divisive Correlation Clustering Algorithm (DCCA) that is suitable for finding a group of genes having similar pattern of variation in their expression values. To detect clusters with high correlation and biological significance, we use the correlation clustering concept introduced by Bansal et al. Our proposed algorithm DCCA produces a clustering solution without taking number of clusters to be created as an input. DCCA uses the correlation matrix in such a way that all genes in a cluster have highest average correlation with genes in that cluster. To test the performance of the DCCA, we have applied DCCA and some well-known conventional methods to an artificial dataset, and nine gene-expression datasets, and compared the performance of the algorithms. The clustering results of the DCCA are found to be more significantly relevant to the biological annotations than those of the other methods. All these facts show the superiority of the DCCA over some others for the clustering of gene-expression data. The software has been developed using C and Visual Basic languages, and can be executed on the Microsoft Windows platforms. The software may be downloaded as a zip file from http://www.isical.ac.in/~rajat. Then it needs to be installed. Two word files (included in the zip file) need to be consulted before installation and execution of the software.

  16. Specificity of the TraA-DNA interaction in the regulation of the pPD1-encoded sex pheromone response in Enterococcus faecalis.

    PubMed

    Folli, Claudia; Mangiarotti, Laura; Folloni, Silvia; Alfieri, Beatrice; Gobbo, Marina; Berni, Rodolfo; Rivetti, Claudio

    2008-07-25

    The Enterococcus faecalis conjugative plasmid pPD1 encodes proteins responsible for the mating response to the sex pheromone cPD1 secreted by a recipient cell. This response involves the respectively negative and positive determinants traA and traE, the pheromone-inhibitor determinant ipd and structural genes participating in the conjugation process. TraA is capable of binding to key sites within the regulatory gene cluster. The binding of TraA to cognate sites is modulated by the pheromone (cPD1) and the pheromone-inhibitor (iPD1) peptides. Using atomic force microscopy and classic biochemical techniques, we mapped and characterized the TraA-DNA interactions within the pPD1 regulatory gene cluster and the role of TraA in the transcription regulation of the sex pheromone response. A previous report showed that TraA binds to three adjacent sites (tab1, tab2 and tab3) located upstream of the ipd promoter region. Here, we provide direct evidence for such interactions and show that TraA alone or in the presence of iPD1 inhibits ipd transcription by preferentially binding to tab1, whereas in the presence of saturating cPD1, the overall binding to the tab sites decreases, TraA preferentially binds to tab3 and the ipd repression is relieved. Moreover, TraA alone or in the presence of iPD1 binds to two non-adjacent sites within the ipd terminators T1 and T2, an interaction that is also relieved in the presence of cPD1. The binding of TraA to the termination region of ipd may play an important role in controlling traE and traF expression via a transcriptional read-through mechanism already postulated for the pAD1 plasmid. TraA may also regulate its own expression by binding to a site in the proximity of the traA promoter, which has been relocated 200 bp downstream of the ipd gene. A model for the TraA-mediated regulation of the pPD1-encoded sex pheromone response is presented.

  17. Regulator of complement activation (RCA) gene cluster in Xenopus tropicalis.

    PubMed

    Oshiumi, Hiroyuki; Suzuki, Yuzuru; Matsumoto, Misako; Seya, Tsukasa

    2009-05-01

    Genome and expressed sequence tag information of Xenopus tropicalis suggested that short-consensus repeat (SCR)-containing proteins are encoded by three genes that are mapped within a 300-kb downstream of PFKFB2, which is a marker gene for the regulator of complement activation (RCA) loci in human and chicken. Based on this observation, we cloned the three cDNAs of these proteins using 3'- or 5'-RACE technique. Since their primary structures and locations of the proximity to the PFKFB2 locus, we named them amphibian RCA protein (ARC) 1, 2, and 3. Expression in human HEK293 or CHO cells suggested that ARC1 is a soluble protein of Mr approximately 67 kDa, ARC2 is a membrane protein with Mr 44 kDa, and ARC3 a secretary protein with a putative transmembrane region. They were N-glycosylated during maturation. In human and chicken RCA clusters, the order in which genes for soluble, GPI-anchored, and membrane forms of SCR proteins are arranged is from the distant to proximity to the PFKFB2 gene. However, the amphibian ARC1, 2, and 3 resembled one another and did not reflect the same order found in human and chicken RCA genes. This may be due to self-duplication of ARCs to form a family, and it evolved after the amphibia separated from the ancestor of the amniotes, which possessed soluble, GPI-anchored, and membrane forms of SCR protein members. Taken together, frog possesses a RCA locus, but the constitution of the ARC proteins differs from that of the amniotes with a unique self-resemblance.

  18. Characterization and expression of the gene encoding En-MAPK1, an intestinal cell kinase (ICK)-like kinase activated by the autocrine pheromone-signaling loop in the Polar Ciliate, Euplotes nobilii.

    PubMed

    Candelori, Annalisa; Luporini, Pierangelo; Alimenti, Claudio; Vallesi, Adriana

    2013-04-03

    In the protozoan ciliate Euplotes, a transduction pathway resulting in a mitogenic cell growth response is activated by autocrine receptor binding of cell type-specific, water-borne signaling protein pheromones. In Euplotes raikovi, a marine species of temperate waters, this transduction pathway was previously shown to involve the phosphorylation of a nuclear protein kinase structurally similar to the intestinal-cell and male germ cell-associated kinases described in mammals. In E. nobilii, which is phylogenetically closely related to E. raikovi but inhabits Antarctic and Arctic waters, we have now characterized a gene encoding a structurally homologous kinase. The expression of this gene requires +1 translational frameshifting and a process of intron splicing for the production of the active protein, designated En-MAPK1, which contains amino acid substitutions of potential significance for cold-adaptation.

  19. Nucleotide sequence and transcriptional analysis of the type A2 neurotoxin gene cluster in Clostridium botulinum.

    PubMed

    Dineen, Sean S; Bradshaw, Marite; Karasek, Charles E; Johnson, Eric A

    2004-06-01

    The nucleotide sequences of the upstream regions of the botulinum neurotoxin type A1 (BoNT/A1) cluster of Clostridium botulinum strain NCTC 2916 and the BoNT/A2 cluster of strain Kyoto-F were determined. A novel gene, designated orfx3, was identified following the orfx2 gene in both clusters. ORF-X2 and ORF-X3 exhibit similarity to the BoNT cluster associated P-47 protein. The BoNT/A1 and BoNT/A2 clusters share a similar gene arrangement, but exhibit differences in the spacing between certain genes. Sequences with similarity to transposases were identified in these intergenic regions, suggesting that these differences arose from an ancestral insertion event. Transcriptional analysis of the BoNT/A2 cluster revealed that the genes of the cluster are primarily synthesized as three polycistronic transcripts. Two divergent polycistronic transcripts, one encoding the orfx1, orfx2, and orfx3 genes, the second encoding the p47, ntnh, and bont/a2 genes, are transcribed from conserved BoNT cluster promoters. The third polycistronic transcript, expressed at low levels, encodes the positive regulatory botR gene and the orfx genes. This is the first complete analysis of a botulinum toxin A2 cluster.

  20. Identification of lethal cluster of genes in the yeast transcription network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rho, K.; Jeong, H.; Kahng, B.

    2006-05-01

    Identification of essential or lethal genes would be one of the ultimate goals in drug designs. Here we introduce an in silico method to select the cluster with a high population of lethal genes, called lethal cluster, through microarray assay. We construct a gene transcription network based on the microarray expression level. Links are added one by one in the descending order of the Pearson correlation coefficients between two genes. As the link density p increases, two meaningful link densities pm and ps are observed. At pm, which is smaller than the percolation threshold, the number of disconnected clusters is maximum, and the lethal genes are highly concentrated in a certain cluster that needs to be identified. Thus the deletion of all genes in that cluster could efficiently lead to a lethal inviable mutant. This lethal cluster can be identified by an in silico method. As p increases further beyond the percolation threshold, the power law behavior in the degree distribution of a giant cluster appears at ps. We measure the degree of each gene at ps. With the information pertaining to the degrees of each gene at ps, we return to the point pm and calculate the mean degree of genes of each cluster. We find that the lethal cluster has the largest mean degree.

  1. Sex pheromone recognition and characterization of three pheromone-binding proteins in the legume pod borer, Maruca vitrata Fabricius (Lepidoptera: Crambidae)

    PubMed Central

    Mao, Aping; Zhou, Jing; Bin Mao; Zheng, Ya; Wang, Yufeng; Li, Daiqin; Wang, Pan; Liu, Kaiyu; Wang, Xiaoping; Ai, Hui

    2016-01-01

    Pheromone-binding proteins (PBPs) are essential for the filtering, binding and transporting of sex pheromones across sensillum lymph to membrane-associated pheromone receptors of moths. In this study, three novel PBP genes were expressed in Escherichia coli to examine their involvement in the sex pheromone perception of Maruca vitrata. Fluorescence binding experiments indicated that MvitPBP1-3 had strong binding affinities with four sex pheromones. Moreover, molecular docking results demonstrated that six amino acid residues of three MvitPBPs were involved in the binding of the sex pheromones. These results suggested that MvitPBP1-3 might play critical roles in the perception of female sex pheromones. Additionally, the binding capacity of MvitPBP3 with the host-plant floral volatiles was high and was similar to that of MvitGOBP2. Furthermore, sequence alignment and docking analysis showed that both MvitGOBP2 and MvitPBP3 possessed an identical key binding site (arginine, R130/R140) and a similar protein pocket structure around the binding cavity. Therefore, we hypothesized that MvitPBP3 and MvitGOBP2 might have synergistic roles in binding different volatile ligands. In combination, the use of synthetic sex pheromones and floral volatiles from host-plant may be used in the exploration for more efficient monitoring and integrated management strategies for the legume pod borer in the field. PMID:27698435

  2. The Autocrine Mitogenic Loop of the Ciliate Euplotes raikovi: The Pheromone Membrane-bound Forms Are the Cell Binding Sites and Potential Signaling Receptors of Soluble Pheromones

    PubMed Central

    Ortenzi, Claudio; Alimenti, Claudio; Vallesi, Adriana; Di Pretoro, Barbara; Terza, Antonietta La; Luporini, Pierangelo

    2000-01-01

    Homologous proteins, denoted pheromones, promote cell mitotic proliferation and mating pair formation in the ciliate Euplotes raikovi, according to whether they bind to cells in an autocrine- or paracrine-like manner. The primary transcripts of the genes encoding these proteins undergo alternate splicing, which generates at least two distinct mRNAs. One is specific for the soluble pheromone, the other for a pheromone isoform that remains anchored to the cell surface as a type II protein, whose extracellular C-terminal region is structurally equivalent to the secreted form. The 15-kDa membrane-bound isoform of pheromone Er-1, denoted Er-1mem and synthesized by the same E. raikovi cells that secrete Er-1, has been purified from cell membranes by affinity chromatography prepared with matrix-bound Er-1, and its extracellular and cytoplasmic regions have been expressed as recombinant proteins. Using the purified material and these recombinant proteins, it has been shown that Er-1mem has the property of binding pheromones competitively through its extracellular pheromone-like domain and associating reversibly and specifically with a guanine nucleotide-binding protein through its intracellular domain. It has been concluded that the membrane-bound pheromone isoforms of E. raikovi represent the cell effective pheromone binding sites and are functionally equipped for transducing the signal generated by this binding. PMID:10749941

  3. Pheromones in the fruit fly.

    PubMed

    Chin, Jacqueline S R; Yew, Joanne Y

    2013-01-01

    The identification of pheromones (chemical communication cues) is critical to our understanding of complex social behavior in insects and other animals. In this chapter, we describe analytical methods for the purification of lipid pheromones by thin layer chromatography and the quantification and determination of their elemental composition by mass spectrometry.

  4. Phenotype-based clustering of glycosylation-related genes by RNAi-mediated gene silencing.

    PubMed

    Yamamoto-Hino, Miki; Yoshida, Hideki; Ichimiya, Tomomi; Sakamura, Sho; Maeda, Megumi; Kimura, Yoshinobu; Sasaki, Norihiko; Aoki-Kinoshita, Kiyoko F; Kinoshita-Toyoda, Akiko; Toyoda, Hidenao; Ueda, Ryu; Nishihara, Shoko; Goto, Satoshi

    2015-06-01

    Glycan structures are synthesized by a series of reactions conducted by glycosylation-related (GR) proteins such as glycosyltransferases, glycan-modifying enzymes, and nucleotide-sugar transporters. For example, the common core region of glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) is sequentially synthesized by peptide-O-xylosyltransferase, β1,4-galactosyltransferase I, β1,3-galactosyltransferase II, and β1,3-glucuronyltransferase. This raises the possibility that functional impairment of GR proteins involved in synthesis of the same glycan might result in the same phenotypic abnormality. To examine this possibility, comprehensive silencing of genes encoding GR and proteoglycan core proteins was conducted in Drosophila. Drosophila GR candidate genes (125) were classified into five functional groups for synthesis of GAGs, N-linked, O-linked, Notch-related, and unknown glycans. Spatiotemporally regulated silencing caused a range of malformed phenotypes that fell into three types: extra veins, thick veins, and depigmentation. The clustered phenotypes reflected the biosynthetic pathways of GAGs, Fringe-dependent glycan on Notch, and glycans placed at or near nonreducing ends (herein termed terminal domains of glycans). Based on the phenotypic clustering, CG33145 was predicted to be involved in formation of terminal domains. Our further analysis showed that CG33145 exhibited galactosyltransferase activity in synthesis of terminal N-linked glycans. Phenotypic clustering, therefore, has potential for the functional prediction of novel GR genes. © 2015 The Authors. Genes to Cells published by Molecular Biology Society of Japan and Wiley Publishing Asia Pty Ltd.

  5. Translating biosynthetic gene clusters into fungal armor and weaponry

    PubMed Central

    Keller, Nancy P

    2015-01-01

    Filamentous fungi are renowned for the production of a diverse array of secondary metabolites (SMs) where the genetic material required for synthesis of a SM is typically arrayed in a biosynthetic gene cluster (BGC). These natural products are valued for their bioactive properties stemming from their functions in fungal biology, key among those protection from abiotic and biotic stress and establishment of a secure niche. The producing fungus must not only avoid self-harm from endogenous SMs but also deliver specific SMs at the right time to the right tissue requiring biochemical aid. This review highlights functions of BGCs beyond the enzymatic assembly of SMs, considering the timing and location of SM production and other proteins in the clusters that control SM activity. Specifically, self-protection is provided by both BGC-encoded mechanisms and non-BGC subcellular containment of toxic SM precursors; delivery and timing is orchestrated through cellular trafficking patterns and stress- and developmental-responsive transcriptional programs. PMID:26284674

  6. Mutational and Phylogenetic Analyses of the Mycobacterial mbt Gene Cluster ▿§

    PubMed Central

    Chavadi, Sivagami Sundaram; Stirrett, Karen L.; Edupuganti, Uthamaphani R.; Vergnolle, Olivia; Sadhanandan, Gigani; Marchiano, Emily; Martin, Che; Qiu, Wei-Gang; Soll, Clifford E.; Quadri, Luis E. N.

    2011-01-01

    The mycobactin siderophore system is present in many Mycobacterium species, including M. tuberculosis and other clinically relevant mycobacteria. This siderophore system is believed to be utilized by both pathogenic and nonpathogenic mycobacteria for iron acquisition in both in vivo and ex vivo iron-limiting environments, respectively. Several M. tuberculosis genes located in a so-called mbt gene cluster have been predicted to be required for the biosynthesis of the core scaffold of mycobactin based on sequence analysis. A systematic and controlled mutational analysis probing the hypothesized essential nature of each of these genes for mycobactin production has been lacking. The degree of conservation of mbt gene cluster orthologs remains to be investigated as well. In this study, we sought to conclusively establish whether each of nine mbt genes was required for mycobactin production and to examine the conservation of gene clusters orthologous to the M. tuberculosis mbt gene cluster in other bacteria. We report a systematic mutational analysis of the mbt gene cluster ortholog found in Mycobacterium smegmatis. This mutational analysis demonstrates that eight of the nine mbt genes investigated are essential for mycobactin production. Our genome mining and phylogenetic analyses reveal the presence of orthologous mbt gene clusters in several bacterial species. These gene clusters display significant organizational differences originating from an intricate evolutionary path that might have included horizontal gene transfers. Altogether, the findings reported herein advance our understanding of the genetic requirements for the biosynthesis of an important mycobacterial secondary metabolite with relevance to virulence. PMID:21873494

  7. Enzymology of aminoglycoside biosynthesis-deduction from gene clusters.

    PubMed

    Wehmeier, Udo F; Piepersberg, Wolfgang

    2009-01-01

    The classical aminoglycosides are, with very few exceptions, typically actinobacterial secondary metabolites with antimicrobial activities all mediated by inhibiting translation on the 30S subunit of the bacterial ribosome. Some chemically related natural products inhibit glucosidases by mimicking oligo-alpha-1,4-glucosides. The biochemistry of the aminoglycoside biosynthetic pathways is still a developing field since none of the pathways has been analyzed to completeness as yet. In this chapter we treat the enzymology of aminoglycoside biosyntheses as far as it becomes apparent from recent investigations based on the availability of DNA sequence data of biosynthetic gene clusters for all major structural classes of these bacterial metabolites. We give a more general overview of the field, including descriptions of some key enzymes in various aminoglycoside pathways, whereas in Chapter 20 provides a detailed account of the better-studied enzymology thus far known for the neomycin and butirosin pathways.

  8. Heterologous expression of pikromycin biosynthetic gene cluster using Streptomyces artificial chromosome system.

    PubMed

    Pyeon, Hye-Rim; Nah, Hee-Ju; Kang, Seung-Hoon; Choi, Si-Sun; Kim, Eung-Soo

    2017-05-31

    Heterologous expression of biosynthetic gene clusters of natural microbial products has become an essential strategy for titer improvement and pathway engineering of various potentially-valuable natural products. A Streptomyces artificial chromosomal conjugation vector, pSBAC, was previously successfully applied for precise cloning and tandem integration of a large polyketide tautomycetin (TMC) biosynthetic gene cluster (Nah et al. in Microb Cell Fact 14(1):1, 2015), implying that this strategy could be employed to develop a custom overexpression scheme of natural product pathway clusters present in actinomycetes. To validate the pSBAC system as a generally-applicable heterologous overexpression system for a large-sized polyketide biosynthetic gene cluster in Streptomyces, another model polyketide compound, the pikromycin biosynthetic gene cluster, was preciously cloned and heterologously expressed using the pSBAC system. A unique HindIII restriction site was precisely inserted at one of the border regions of the pikromycin biosynthetic gene cluster within the chromosome of Streptomyces venezuelae, followed by site-specific recombination of pSBAC into the flanking region of the pikromycin gene cluster. Unlike the previous cloning process, one HindIII site integration step was skipped through pSBAC modification. pPik001, a pSBAC containing the pikromycin biosynthetic gene cluster, was directly introduced into two heterologous hosts, Streptomyces lividans and Streptomyces coelicolor, resulting in the production of 10-deoxymethynolide, a major pikromycin derivative. When two entire pikromycin biosynthetic gene clusters were tandemly introduced into the S. lividans chromosome, overproduction of 10-deoxymethynolide and the presence of pikromycin, which was previously not detected, were both confirmed. Moreover, comparative qRT-PCR results confirmed that the transcription of pikromycin biosynthetic genes was significantly upregulated in S. lividans containing tandem

  9. A Special Local Clustering Algorithm for Identifying the Genes Associated With Alzheimer’s Disease

    PubMed Central

    Pang, Chao-Yang; Hu, Wei; Hu, Ben-Qiong; Shi, Ying; Vanderburg, Charles R.; Rogers, Jack T.

    2010-01-01

    Clustering is the grouping of similar objects into a class. Local clustering feature refers to the phenomenon whereby one group of data is separated from another, and the data from these different groups are clustered locally. A compact class is defined as one cluster in which all similar elements cluster tightly within the cluster. Herein, the essence of the local clustering feature, revealed by mathematical manipulation, results in a novel clustering algorithm termed as the special local clustering (SLC) algorithm that was used to process gene microarray data related to Alzheimer’s disease (AD). SLC algorithm was able to group together genes with similar expression patterns and identify significantly varied gene expression values as isolated points. If a gene belongs to a compact class in control data and appears as an isolated point in incipient, moderate and/or severe AD gene microarray data, this gene is possibly associated with AD. Application of a clustering algorithm in disease-associated gene identification such as in AD is rarely reported. PMID:20089478

  10. Elephant shark (Callorhinchus milii) provides insights into the evolution of Hox gene clusters in gnathostomes.

    PubMed

    Ravi, Vydianathan; Lam, Kevin; Tay, Boon-Hui; Tay, Alice; Brenner, Sydney; Venkatesh, Byrappa

    2009-09-22

    We have sequenced and analyzed Hox gene clusters from elephant shark, a holocephalian cartilaginous fish. Elephant shark possesses 4 Hox clusters with 45 Hox genes that include orthologs for a higher number of ancient gnathostome Hox genes than the 4 clusters in tetrapods and the supernumerary clusters in teleost fishes. Phylogenetic analysis of elephant shark Hox genes from 7 paralogous groups that contain all of the 4 members indicated an ((AB)(CD)) topology for the order of Hox cluster duplication, providing support for the 2R hypothesis (i.e., 2 rounds of whole-genome duplication during the early evolution of vertebrates). Comparisons of noncoding sequences of the elephant shark and human Hox clusters have identified a large number of conserved noncoding elements (CNEs), which represent putative cis-regulatory elements that may be involved in the regulation of Hox genes. Interestingly, in fugu more than 50% of these ancient CNEs have diverged beyond recognition in the duplicated (HoxA, HoxB, and HoxD) as well as the singleton (HoxC) Hox clusters. Furthermore, the b-paralogs of the duplicated fugu Hox clusters are virtually devoid of unique ancient CNEs. In contrast to fugu Hox clusters, elephant shark and human Hox clusters have lost fewer ancient CNEs. If these ancient CNEs are indeed enhancers directing tissue-specific expression of Hox genes, divergence of their sequences in vertebrate lineages might have led to altered expression patterns and presumably the functions of their associated Hox genes.

  11. Elephant shark (Callorhinchus milii) provides insights into the evolution of Hox gene clusters in gnathostomes

    PubMed Central

    Ravi, Vydianathan; Lam, Kevin; Tay, Boon-Hui; Tay, Alice; Brenner, Sydney; Venkatesh, Byrappa

    2009-01-01

    We have sequenced and analyzed Hox gene clusters from elephant shark, a holocephalian cartilaginous fish. Elephant shark possesses 4 Hox clusters with 45 Hox genes that include orthologs for a higher number of ancient gnathostome Hox genes than the 4 clusters in tetrapods and the supernumerary clusters in teleost fishes. Phylogenetic analysis of elephant shark Hox genes from 7 paralogous groups that contain all of the 4 members indicated an ((AB)(CD)) topology for the order of Hox cluster duplication, providing support for the 2R hypothesis (i.e., 2 rounds of whole-genome duplication during the early evolution of vertebrates). Comparisons of noncoding sequences of the elephant shark and human Hox clusters have identified a large number of conserved noncoding elements (CNEs), which represent putative cis-regulatory elements that may be involved in the regulation of Hox genes. Interestingly, in fugu more than 50% of these ancient CNEs have diverged beyond recognition in the duplicated (HoxA, HoxB, and HoxD) as well as the singleton (HoxC) Hox clusters. Furthermore, the b-paralogs of the duplicated fugu Hox clusters are virtually devoid of unique ancient CNEs. In contrast to fugu Hox clusters, elephant shark and human Hox clusters have lost fewer ancient CNEs. If these ancient CNEs are indeed enhancers directing tissue-specific expression of Hox genes, divergence of their sequences in vertebrate lineages might have led to altered expression patterns and presumably the functions of their associated Hox genes. PMID:19805301

  12. Genetic Control of Conventional and Pheromone-Stimulated Biofilm Formation in Candida albicans

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Ching-Hsuan; Kabrawala, Shail; Fox, Emily P.; Nobile, Clarissa J.; Johnson, Alexander D.; Bennett, Richard J.

    2013-01-01

    Candida albicans can stochastically switch between two phenotypes, white and opaque. Opaque cells are the sexually competent form of C. albicans and therefore undergo efficient polarized growth and mating in the presence of pheromone. In contrast, white cells cannot mate, but are induced – under a specialized set of conditions – to form biofilms in response to pheromone. In this work, we compare the genetic regulation of such “pheromone-stimulated” biofilms with that of “conventional” C. albicans biofilms. In particular, we examined a network of six transcriptional regulators (Bcr1, Brg1, Efg1, Tec1, Ndt80, and Rob1) that mediate conventional biofilm formation for their potential roles in pheromone-stimulated biofilm formation. We show that four of the six transcription factors (Bcr1, Brg1, Rob1, and Tec1) promote formation of both conventional and pheromone-stimulated biofilms, indicating they play general roles in cell cohesion and biofilm development. In addition, we identify the master transcriptional regulator of pheromone-stimulated biofilms as C. albicans Cph1, ortholog of Saccharomyces cerevisiae Ste12. Cph1 regulates mating in C. albicans opaque cells, and here we show that Cph1 is also essential for pheromone-stimulated biofilm formation in white cells. In contrast, Cph1 is dispensable for the formation of conventional biofilms. The regulation of pheromone- stimulated biofilm formation was further investigated by transcriptional profiling and genetic analyses. These studies identified 196 genes that are induced by pheromone signaling during biofilm formation. One of these genes, HGC1, is shown to be required for both conventional and pheromone-stimulated biofilm formation. Taken together, these observations compare and contrast the regulation of conventional and pheromone-stimulated biofilm formation in C. albicans, and demonstrate that Cph1 is required for the latter, but not the former. PMID:23637598

  13. Genetic control of conventional and pheromone-stimulated biofilm formation in Candida albicans.

    PubMed

    Lin, Ching-Hsuan; Kabrawala, Shail; Fox, Emily P; Nobile, Clarissa J; Johnson, Alexander D; Bennett, Richard J

    2013-01-01

    Candida albicans can stochastically switch between two phenotypes, white and opaque. Opaque cells are the sexually competent form of C. albicans and therefore undergo efficient polarized growth and mating in the presence of pheromone. In contrast, white cells cannot mate, but are induced - under a specialized set of conditions - to form biofilms in response to pheromone. In this work, we compare the genetic regulation of such "pheromone-stimulated" biofilms with that of "conventional" C. albicans biofilms. In particular, we examined a network of six transcriptional regulators (Bcr1, Brg1, Efg1, Tec1, Ndt80, and Rob1) that mediate conventional biofilm formation for their potential roles in pheromone-stimulated biofilm formation. We show that four of the six transcription factors (Bcr1, Brg1, Rob1, and Tec1) promote formation of both conventional and pheromone-stimulated biofilms, indicating they play general roles in cell cohesion and biofilm development. In addition, we identify the master transcriptional regulator of pheromone-stimulated biofilms as C. albicans Cph1, ortholog of Saccharomyces cerevisiae Ste12. Cph1 regulates mating in C. albicans opaque cells, and here we show that Cph1 is also essential for pheromone-stimulated biofilm formation in white cells. In contrast, Cph1 is dispensable for the formation of conventional biofilms. The regulation of pheromone- stimulated biofilm formation was further investigated by transcriptional profiling and genetic analyses. These studies identified 196 genes that are induced by pheromone signaling during biofilm formation. One of these genes, HGC1, is shown to be required for both conventional and pheromone-stimulated biofilm formation. Taken together, these observations compare and contrast the regulation of conventional and pheromone-stimulated biofilm formation in C. albicans, and demonstrate that Cph1 is required for the latter, but not the former.

  14. Integrative clustering by nonnegative matrix factorization can reveal coherent functional groups from gene profile data.

    PubMed

    Brdar, Sanja; Crnojević, Vladimir; Zupan, Blaz

    2015-03-01

    Recent developments in molecular biology and techniques for genome-wide data acquisition have resulted in abundance of data to profile genes and predict their function. These datasets may come from diverse sources and it is an open question how to commonly address them and fuse them into a joint prediction model. A prevailing technique to identify groups of related genes that exhibit similar profiles is profile-based clustering. Cluster inference may benefit from consensus across different clustering models. In this paper, we propose a technique that develops separate gene clusters from each of available data sources and then fuses them by means of nonnegative matrix factorization. We use gene profile data on the budding yeast S. cerevisiae to demonstrate that this approach can successfully integrate heterogeneous datasets and yield high-quality clusters that could otherwise not be inferred by simply merging the gene profiles prior to clustering.

  15. Comparative Analysis of Cluster Validity Indices in Identifying Some Possible Genes Mediating Certain Cancers.

    PubMed

    Ghosh, Anupam; Dhara, Bibhas Chandra; De, Rajat K

    2013-04-01

    In this article, we compare the performance of 19 cluster validity indices, in identifying some possible genes mediating certain cancers, based on gene expression data. For the purpose of this comparison, we have developed a method. The proposed method involves cluster generation, selection of the best k-value or c-values, cluster identification, identifying the altered gene cluster, scoring an altered gene cluster and determining the best k-value or c-value exploring through biological repositories. The effectiveness of the method has been demonstrated on three gene expression data sets dealing with human lung cancer, colon cancer, and leukemia. Here, we have used three clustering algorithms, i.e., k-means, PAM and fuzzy c-means. We have used biochemical pathways related to these cancers and p-value statistics for validating the study. Copyright © 2013 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  16. Clustered Genes Encoding the Methyltransferases of Methanogenesis from Monomethylamine

    PubMed Central

    Burke, Stephen A.; Lo, Sam L.; Krzycki, Joseph A.

    1998-01-01

    Coenzyme M (CoM) is methylated during methanogenesis from monomethyamine in a reaction catalyzed by three proteins. Using monomethylamine, a 52-kDa polypeptide termed monomethylamine methyltransferase (MMAMT) methylates the corrinoid cofactor bound to a second polypeptide, monomethylamine corrinoid protein (MMCP). Methylated MMCP then serves as a substrate for MT2-A, which methylates CoM. The genes for these proteins are clustered on 6.8 kb of DNA in Methanosarcina barkeri MS. The gene encoding MMCP (mtmC) is located directly upstream of the gene encoding MMAMT (mtmB). The gene encoding MT2-A (mtbA) was found 1.1 kb upstream of mtmC, but no obvious open reading frame was found in the intergenic region between mtbA and mtmC. A single monocistronic transcript was found for mtbA that initiated 76 bp from the translational start. Separate transcripts of 2.4 and 4.7 kb were detected, both of which carried mtmCB. The larger transcript also encoded mtmP, which is homologous to the APC family of cationic amine permeases and may therefore encode a methylamine permease. A single transcriptional start site was found 447 bp upstream of the translational start of mtmC. MtmC possesses the corrinoid binding motif found in corrinoid proteins involved in dimethylsulfide- and methanol-dependent methanogenesis, as well as in methionine synthase. The open reading frame of mtmB was interrupted by a single in-frame, midframe, UAG codon which was also found in mtmB from M. barkeri NIH. A mechanism that circumvents UAG-directed termination of translation must operate during expression of mtmB in this methanogen. PMID:9642198

  17. Clustered genes encoding the methyltransferases of methanogenesis from monomethylamine.

    PubMed

    Burke, S A; Lo, S L; Krzycki, J A

    1998-07-01

    Coenzyme M (CoM) is methylated during methanogenesis from monomethyamine in a reaction catalyzed by three proteins. Using monomethylamine, a 52-kDa polypeptide termed monomethylamine methyltransferase (MMAMT) methylates the corrinoid cofactor bound to a second polypeptide, monomethylamine corrinoid protein (MMCP). Methylated MMCP then serves as a substrate for MT2-A, which methylates CoM. The genes for these proteins are clustered on 6.8 kb of DNA in Methanosarcina barkeri MS. The gene encoding MMCP (mtmC) is located directly upstream of the gene encoding MMAMT (mtmB). The gene encoding MT2-A (mtbA) was found 1.1 kb upstream of mtmC, but no obvious open reading frame was found in the intergenic region between mtbA and mtmC. A single monocistronic transcript was found for mtbA that initiated 76 bp from the translational start. Separate transcripts of 2.4 and 4.7 kb were detected, both of which carried mtmCB. The larger transcript also encoded mtmP, which is homologous to the APC family of cationic amine permeases and may therefore encode a methylamine permease. A single transcriptional start site was found 447 bp upstream of the translational start of mtmC. MtmC possesses the corrinoid binding motif found in corrinoid proteins involved in dimethylsulfide- and methanol-dependent methanogenesis, as well as in methionine synthase. The open reading frame of mtmB was interrupted by a single in-frame, midframe, UAG codon which was also found in mtmB from M. barkeri NIH. A mechanism that circumvents UAG-directed termination of translation must operate during expression of mtmB in this methanogen.

  18. 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.

  19. Tandem repeats 3{prime} of the IGHA genes in the human immunoglobulin heavy chain gene cluster

    SciTech Connect

    Kang, H.K.; Cox, D.W. |

    1996-07-01

    The human IGH constant region spans 350 kb and includes nine genes and two pseudogenes. All of the constant region gene cluster has been cloned except for sequences between the IGHD and IGHG3 genes, between the IGHA1 and IGHA2 gene. The regions 3{prime} of the IGHA genes, which are not cloned, are of interest since transcriptional control elements were found downstream of the IGHA genes in the rat and the mouse IGH loci. In addition, by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis mapping, CpG islands were identified approximately 30 kb downstream of each IGHA gene, within the uncloned portion of the human IGH. These findings indicate that the regions 3{prime} of the IGHA genes to be unclonable by standard cloning methods. Therefore, we applied the Inverse-PCR technique to amplify the sequences flanking the IGHA1 gene. The new sequence included tandem repeats of 20 bp, which we propose is the cause of the unclonability of this region. 39 refs., 6 figs.

  20. The gsdf gene locus harbors evolutionary conserved and clustered genes preferentially expressed in fish previtellogenic oocytes.

    PubMed

    Gautier, Aude; Le Gac, Florence; Lareyre, Jean-Jacques

    2011-02-01

    display a different cellular localization compared to that of the gsdf gene indicating that the later gene is not co-regulated. Interestingly, our study identifies new clustered genes that are specifically expressed in previtellogenic oocytes (nup54, aff1, klhl8, sdad1).

  1. Identification and Functional Analysis of the Nocardithiocin Gene Cluster in Nocardia pseudobrasiliensis

    PubMed Central

    Sakai, Kanae; Komaki, Hisayuki; Gonoi, Tohru

    2015-01-01

    Nocardithiocin is a thiopeptide compound isolated from the opportunistic pathogen Nocardia pseudobrasiliensis. It shows a strong activity against acid-fast bacteria and is also active against rifampicin-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Here, we report the identification of the nocardithiocin gene cluster in N. pseudobrasiliensis IFM 0761 based on conserved thiopeptide biosynthesis gene sequence and the whole genome sequence. The predicted gene cluster was confirmed by gene disruption and complementation. As expected, strains containing the disrupted gene did not produce nocardithiocin while gene complementation restored nocardithiocin production in these strains. The predicted cluster was further analyzed using RNA-seq which showed that the nocardithiocin gene cluster contains 12 genes within a 15.2-kb region. This finding will promote the improvement of nocardithiocin productivity and its derivatives production. PMID:26588225

  2. Characterization and expression analysis of the exopolysaccharide gene cluster in Lactobacillus fermentum TDS030603.

    PubMed

    Dan, Tong; Fukuda, Kenji; Sugai-Bannai, Michiko; Takakuwa, Naoya; Motoshima, Hidemasa; Urashima, Tadasu

    2009-12-01

    Part of the exopolysaccharide gene cluster of Lactobacillus fermentum TDS030603 was characterized. It consists of 11,890 base pairs and is located in the chromosomal DNA, 13 open reading frames of which were encoded. Out of the 13 open reading frames, six were found to be involved in exopolysaccharide synthesis; however, five were similar to transposase genes of other lactobacilli, and two were functionally unrelated. Expression analysis revealed that the exopolysaccharide synthesis-related genes were expressed during cultivation. Southern analysis using specific primers for the exopolysaccharide genes indicated that duplication of the gene cluster did not occur. The plasmid-cured strain maintained its capacity for exopolysaccharide production, confirming that the exopolysaccharide gene cluster of this strain is located in the chromosomal DNA, similarly to thermophilic lactic acid bacteria. Our results indicate that this exopolysaccharide gene cluster is likely to be functional, although extensive gene rearrangement occurs.

  3. Identification and Functional Analysis of the Nocardithiocin Gene Cluster in Nocardia pseudobrasiliensis.

    PubMed

    Sakai, Kanae; Komaki, Hisayuki; Gonoi, Tohru

    2015-01-01

    Nocardithiocin is a thiopeptide compound isolated from the opportunistic pathogen Nocardia pseudobrasiliensis. It shows a strong activity against acid-fast bacteria and is also active against rifampicin-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Here, we report the identification of the nocardithiocin gene cluster in N. pseudobrasiliensis IFM 0761 based on conserved thiopeptide biosynthesis gene sequence and the whole genome sequence. The predicted gene cluster was confirmed by gene disruption and complementation. As expected, strains containing the disrupted gene did not produce nocardithiocin while gene complementation restored nocardithiocin production in these strains. The predicted cluster was further analyzed using RNA-seq which showed that the nocardithiocin gene cluster contains 12 genes within a 15.2-kb region. This finding will promote the improvement of nocardithiocin productivity and its derivatives production.

  4. A Bayesian clustering approach for detecting gene-gene interactions in high-dimensional genotype data.

    PubMed

    Chen, Sui-Pi; Huang, Guan-Hua

    2014-06-01

    This paper uses a Bayesian formulation of a clustering procedure to identify gene-gene interactions under case-control studies, called the Algorithm via Bayesian Clustering to Detect Epistasis (ABCDE). The ABCDE uses Dirichlet process mixtures to model SNP marker partitions, and uses the Gibbs weighted Chinese restaurant sampling to simulate posterior distributions of these partitions. Unlike the representative Bayesian epistasis detection algorithm BEAM, which partitions markers into three groups, the ABCDE can be evaluated at any given partition, regardless of the number of groups. This study also develops permutation tests to validate the disease association for SNP subsets identified by the ABCDE, which can yield results that are more robust to model specification and prior assumptions. This study examines the performance of the ABCDE and compares it with the BEAM using various simulated data and a schizophrenia SNP dataset.

  5. Epigenetic regulation of the RHOX homeobox gene cluster and its association with human male infertility.

    PubMed

    Richardson, Marcy E; Bleiziffer, Andreas; Tüttelmann, Frank; Gromoll, Jörg; Wilkinson, Miles F

    2014-01-01

    The X-linked RHOX cluster encodes a set of homeobox genes that are selectively expressed in the reproductive tract. Members of the RHOX cluster regulate target genes important for spermatogenesis promote male fertility in mice. Studies show that demethylating agents strongly upregulate the expression of mouse Rhox genes, suggesting that they are regulated by DNA methylation. However, whether this extends to human RHOX genes, whether DNA methylation directly regulates RHOX gene transcription and how this relates to human male infertility are unknown. To address these issues, we first defined the promoter regions of human RHOX genes and performed gain- and loss-of-function experiments to determine whether human RHOX gene transcription is regulated by DNA methylation. Our results indicated that DNA methylation is necessary and sufficient to silence human RHOX gene expression. To determine whether RHOX cluster methylation associates with male infertility, we evaluated the methylation status of RHOX genes in sperm from a large cohort of infertility patients. Linear regression analysis revealed a strong association between RHOX gene cluster hypermethylation and three independent types of semen abnormalities. Hypermethylation was restricted specifically to the RHOX cluster; we did not observe it in genes immediately adjacent to it on the X chromosome. Our results strongly suggest that human RHOX homeobox genes are under an epigenetic control mechanism that is aberrantly regulated in infertility patients. We propose that hypermethylation of the RHOX gene cluster serves as a marker for idiopathic infertility and that it is a candidate to exert a causal role in male infertility.

  6. Activation and Characterization of a Cryptic Polycyclic Tetramate Macrolactam Biosynthetic Gene Cluster

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Yunzi; Huang, Hua; Liang, Jing; Wang, Meng; Lu, Lu; Shao, Zengyi; Cobb, Ryan E.; Zhao, Huimin

    2014-01-01

    Polycyclic tetramate macrolactams (PTMs) are a widely distributed class of natural products with important biological activities. However, many of them have not been characterized. Here we apply a plug and play synthetic biology strategy to activate a cryptic PTM biosynthetic gene cluster SGR810-815 from Streptomyces griseus and discover three potential PTMs. This gene cluster is highly conserved in phylogenetically diverse bacterial strains and contains an unusual hybrid polyketide synthase-nonribosomal peptide synthetase (PKS-NRPS) which resembles iterative PKSs known in fungi. To further characterize this gene cluster, we use the same synthetic biology approach to create a series of gene deletion constructs and elucidate the biosynthetic steps for the formation of the polycyclic system. The strategy we employ bypasses the traditional laborious processes to elicit gene cluster expression and should be generally applicable to many other silent or cryptic gene clusters for discovery and characterization of new natural products. PMID:24305602

  7. Challenges in microarray class discovery: a comprehensive examination of normalization, gene selection and clustering

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Cluster analysis, and in particular hierarchical clustering, is widely used to extract information from gene expression data. The aim is to discover new classes, or sub-classes, of either individuals or genes. Performing a cluster analysis commonly involve decisions on how to; handle missing values, standardize the data and select genes. In addition, pre-processing, involving various types of filtration and normalization procedures, can have an effect on the ability to discover biologically relevant classes. Here we consider cluster analysis in a broad sense and perform a comprehensive evaluation that covers several aspects of cluster analyses, including normalization. Result We evaluated 2780 cluster analysis methods on seven publicly available 2-channel microarray data sets with common reference designs. Each cluster analysis method differed in data normalization (5 normalizations were considered), missing value imputation (2), standardization of data (2), gene selection (19) or clustering method (11). The cluster analyses are evaluated using known classes, such as cancer types, and the adjusted Rand index. The performances of the different analyses vary between the data sets and it is difficult to give general recommendations. However, normalization, gene selection and clustering method are all variables that have a significant impact on the performance. In particular, gene selection is important and it is generally necessary to include a relatively large number of genes in order to get good performance. Selecting genes with high standard deviation or using principal component analysis are shown to be the preferred gene selection methods. Hierarchical clustering using Ward's method, k-means clustering and Mclust are the clustering methods considered in this paper that achieves the highest adjusted Rand. Normalization can have a significant positive impact on the ability to cluster individuals, and there are indications that background correction is

  8. An Ergot Alkaloid Biosynthesis Gene and Clustered Hypothetical Genes from Aspergillus fumigatus†

    PubMed Central

    Coyle, Christine M.; Panaccione, Daniel G.

    2005-01-01

    The ergot alkaloids are a family of indole-derived mycotoxins with a variety of significant biological activities. Aspergillus fumigatus, a common airborne fungus and opportunistic human pathogen, and several fungi in the relatively distant taxon Clavicipitaceae (clavicipitaceous fungi) produce different sets of ergot alkaloids. The ergot alkaloids of these divergent fungi share a four-member ergoline ring but differ in the number, type, and position of the side chains. Several genes required for ergot alkaloid production are known in the clavicipitaceous fungi, and these genes are clustered in the genome of the ergot fungus Claviceps purpurea. We investigated whether the ergot alkaloids of A. fumigatus have a common biosynthetic and genetic origin with those of the clavicipitaceous fungi. A homolog of dmaW, the gene controlling the determinant step in the ergot alkaloid pathway of clavicipitaceous fungi, was identified in the A. fumigatus genome. Knockout of dmaW eliminated all known ergot alkaloids from A. fumigatus, and complementation of the mutation restored ergot alkaloid production. Clustered with dmaW in the A. fumigatus genome are sequences corresponding to five genes previously proposed to encode steps in the ergot alkaloid pathway of C. purpurea, as well as additional sequences whose deduced protein products are consistent with their involvement in the ergot alkaloid pathway. The corresponding genes have similarities in their nucleotide sequences, but the orientations and positions within the cluster of several of these genes differ. The data indicate that the ergot alkaloid biosynthetic capabilities in A. fumigatus and the clavicipitaceous fungi had a common origin. PMID:15933009

  9. Odor and pheromone detection in Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Smith, Dean P

    2007-08-01

    Drosophila melanogaster has proven to be a useful model system to probe the mechanisms underlying the detection, discrimination, and perception of volatile odorants. The relatively small receptor repertoire of 62 odorant receptors makes the goal of understanding odor responses from the total receptor repertoire approachable in this system, and recent work has been directed toward this goal. In addition, new work not only sheds light but also raises more questions about the initial steps in odor perception in this system. Odorant receptor genes in Drosophila are predicted to encode seven transmembrane receptors, but surprising data suggest that these receptors may be inverted in the plasma membrane compared to classical G-protein coupled receptors. Finally, although some Drosophila odorant receptors are activated directly by odorant molecules, detection of a volatile pheromone, 11-cis vaccenyl acetate requires an extracellular adapter protein called LUSH for activation of pheromone sensitive neurons. Because pheromones are used by insects to trigger mating and other behaviors, these insights may herald new approaches to control behavior in pathogenic and agricultural pest insects.

  10. Simcluster: clustering enumeration gene expression data on the simplex space.

    PubMed

    Vêncio, Ricardo Z N; Varuzza, Leonardo; de B Pereira, Carlos A; Brentani, Helena; Shmulevich, Ilya

    2007-07-11

    Transcript enumeration methods such as SAGE, MPSS, and sequencing-by-synthesis EST "digital northern", are important high-throughput techniques for digital gene expression measurement. As other counting or voting processes, these measurements constitute compositional data exhibiting properties particular to the simplex space where the summation of the components is constrained. These properties are not present on regular Euclidean spaces, on which hybridization-based microarray data is often modeled. Therefore, pattern recognition methods commonly used for microarray data analysis may be non-informative for the data generated by transcript enumeration techniques since they ignore certain fundamental properties of this space. Here we present a software tool, Simcluster, designed to perform clustering analysis for data on the simplex space. We present Simcluster as a stand-alone command-line C package and as a user-friendly on-line tool. Both versions are available at: http://xerad.systemsbiology.net/simcluster. Simcluster is designed in accordance with a well-established mathematical framework for compositional data analysis, which provides principled procedures for dealing with the simplex space, and is thus applicable in a number of contexts, including enumeration-based gene expression data.

  11. Simcluster: clustering enumeration gene expression data on the simplex space

    PubMed Central

    2007-01-01

    Background Transcript enumeration methods such as SAGE, MPSS, and sequencing-by-synthesis EST "digital northern", are important high-throughput techniques for digital gene expression measurement. As other counting or voting processes, these measurements constitute compositional data exhibiting properties particular to the simplex space where the summation of the components is constrained. These properties are not present on regular Euclidean spaces, on which hybridization-based microarray data is often modeled. Therefore, pattern recognition methods commonly used for microarray data analysis may be non-informative for the data generated by transcript enumeration techniques since they ignore certain fundamental properties of this space. Results Here we present a software tool, Simcluster, designed to perform clustering analysis for data on the simplex space. We present Simcluster as a stand-alone command-line C package and as a user-friendly on-line tool. Both versions are available at: http://xerad.systemsbiology.net/simcluster. Conclusion Simcluster is designed in accordance with a well-established mathematical framework for compositional data analysis, which provides principled procedures for dealing with the simplex space, and is thus applicable in a number of contexts, including enumeration-based gene expression data. PMID:17625017

  12. Unusual mutation clusters provide insight into class I gene conversion mechanisms.

    PubMed Central

    Pease, L R; Horton, R M; Pullen, J K; Yun, T J

    1993-01-01

    Genetic diversity among the K and D alleles of the mouse major histocompatibility complex is generated by gene conversion among members of the class I multigene family. The majority of known class I mutants contain clusters of nucleotide changes that can be traced to linked family members. However, the details of the gene conversion mechanism are not known. The bm3 and bm23 mutations represent exceptions to the usual pattern and provide insight into intermediates generated during the gene conversion process. Both of these variants contain clusters of five nucleotide substitutions, but they differ from the classic conversion mutants in the important respect that no donor gene for either mutation could be identified in the parental genome. Nevertheless, both mutation clusters are composed of individual mutations that do exist within the parent. Therefore, they are not random and appear to be templated. Significantly, the bm3 and bm23 mutation clusters are divided into overlapping regions that match class I genes which have functioned as donor genes in other characterized gene conversion events. The unusual structure of the mutation clusters indicates an underlying gene conversion mechanism that can generate mutation clusters as a result of the interaction of three genes in a single genetic event. The unusual mutation clusters are consistent with a hypothetical gene conversion model involving extrachromosomal intermediates. Images PMID:8321237

  13. A hypothesis to explain how laeA specifically regulates certain secondary metabolite biosynthesis gene clusters

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Biosynthesis of mycotoxins involves transcriptional co-regulation of sets of clustered genes. We hypothesize that specific control of transcription of genes in these clusters by LaeA, a global regulator of secondary metabolite production and development in aspergilli and other filamentous fungi, re...

  14. Genome-Wide Prediction of Metabolic Enzymes, Pathways, and Gene Clusters in Plants1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Peifen; Kim, Taehyong; Banf, Michael; Chavali, Arvind K.; Nilo-Poyanco, Ricardo; Bernard, Thomas

    2017-01-01

    Plant metabolism underpins many traits of ecological and agronomic importance. Plants produce numerous compounds to cope with their environments but the biosynthetic pathways for most of these compounds have not yet been elucidated. To engineer and improve metabolic traits, we need comprehensive and accurate knowledge of the organization and regulation of plant metabolism at the genome scale. Here, we present a computational pipeline to identify metabolic enzymes, pathways, and gene clusters from a sequenced genome. Using this pipeline, we generated metabolic pathway databases for 22 species and identified metabolic gene clusters from 18 species. This unified resource can be used to conduct a wide array of comparative studies of plant metabolism. Using the resource, we discovered a widespread occurrence of metabolic gene clusters in plants: 11,969 clusters from 18 species. The prevalence of metabolic gene clusters offers an intriguing possibility of an untapped source for uncovering new metabolite biosynthesis pathways. For example, more than 1,700 clusters contain enzymes that could generate a specialized metabolite scaffold (signature enzymes) and enzymes that modify the scaffold (tailoring enzymes). In four species with sufficient gene expression data, we identified 43 highly coexpressed clusters that contain signature and tailoring enzymes, of which eight were characterized previously to be functional pathways. Finally, we identified patterns of genome organization that implicate local gene duplication and, to a lesser extent, single gene transposition as having played roles in the evolution of plant metabolic gene clusters. PMID:28228535

  15. Fragmentation of an aflatoxin-like gene cluster in a forest pathogen

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Secondary metabolic pathway genes are typically clustered in fungi. An exception to this paradigm is seen for genes required for the production of dothistromin, an aflatoxin-like virulence factor produced by the pine needle pathogen Dothistroma septosporum. In contrast to the tight clustering of gen...

  16. Rough-fuzzy clustering for grouping functionally similar genes from microarray data.

    PubMed

    Maji, Pradipta; Paul, Sushmita

    2013-01-01

    Gene expression data clustering is one of the important tasks of functional genomics as it provides a powerful tool for studying functional relationships of genes in a biological process. Identifying coexpressed groups of genes represents the basic challenge in gene clustering problem. In this regard, a gene clustering algorithm, termed as robust rough-fuzzy c-means, is proposed judiciously integrating the merits of rough sets and fuzzy sets. While the concept of lower and upper approximations of rough sets deals with uncertainty, vagueness, and incompleteness in cluster definition, the integration of probabilistic and possibilistic memberships of fuzzy sets enables efficient handling of overlapping partitions in noisy environment. The concept of possibilistic lower bound and probabilistic boundary of a cluster, introduced in robust rough-fuzzy c-means, enables efficient selection of gene clusters. An efficient method is proposed to select initial prototypes of different gene clusters, which enables the proposed c-means algorithm to converge to an optimum or near optimum solutions and helps to discover coexpressed gene clusters. The effectiveness of the algorithm, along with a comparison with other algorithms, is demonstrated both qualitatively and quantitatively on 14 yeast microarray data sets.

  17. Identification and analysis of a highly conserved chemotaxis gene cluster in Shewanella species.

    SciTech Connect

    Li, J.; Romine, Margaret F.; Ward, M.

    2007-08-01

    A conserved cluster of chemotaxis genes was identified from the genome sequences of fifteen Shewanella species. An in-frame deletion of the cheA-3 gene, which is located in this cluster, was created in S. oneidensis MR-1 and the gene shown to be essential for chemotactic responses to anaerobic electron acceptors. The CheA-3 protein showed strong similarity to Vibrio cholerae CheA-2 and P. aeruginosa CheA-1, two proteins that are also essential for chemotaxis. The genes encoding these proteins were shown to be located in chemotaxis gene clusters closely related to the cheA-3-containing cluster in Shewanella species. The results of this study suggest that a combination of gene neighborhood and homology analyses may be used to predict which cheA genes are essential for chemotaxis in groups of closely related microorganisms.

  18. A phylogenomic gene cluster resource: The phylogeneticallyinferred groups (PhlGs) database

    SciTech Connect

    Dehal, Paramvir S.; Boore, Jeffrey L.

    2005-08-25

    We present here the PhIGs database, a phylogenomic resource for sequenced genomes. Although many methods exist for clustering gene families, very few attempt to create truly orthologous clusters sharing descent from a single ancestral gene across a range of evolutionary depths. Although these non-phylogenetic gene family clusters have been used broadly for gene annotation, errors are known to be introduced by the artifactual association of slowly evolving paralogs and lack of annotation for those more rapidly evolving. A full phylogenetic framework is necessary for accurate inference of function and for many studies that address pattern and mechanism of the evolution of the genome. The automated generation of evolutionary gene clusters, creation of gene trees, determination of orthology and paralogy relationships, and the correlation of this information with gene annotations, expression information, and genomic context is an important resource to the scientific community.

  19. Co-option and evolution of non-olfactory proteinaceous pheromones in a terrestrial lungless salamander.

    PubMed

    Doty, Kari A; Wilburn, Damien B; Bowen, Kathleen E; Feldhoff, Pamela W; Feldhoff, Richard C

    2016-03-01

    Gene co-option is a major force in the evolution of novel biological functions. In plethodontid salamanders, males deliver proteinaceous courtship pheromones to the female olfactory system or transdermally to the bloodstream. Molecular studies identified three families of highly duplicated, rapidly evolving pheromones (PRF, PMF, and SPF). Analyses for Plethodon salamanders revealed pheromone mixtures of primarily PRF and PMF. The current study demonstrates that in Desmognathus ocoee--a plesiomorphic species with transdermal delivery--SPF is the major pheromone component representing >30% of total protein. Chromatographic profiles of D. ocoee pheromones were consistent from May through October. LC/MS-MS analysis suggested uniform SPF isoform expression between individual male D. ocoee. A gene ancestry for SPF with the Three-Finger Protein superfamily was supported by intron-exon boundaries, but not by the disulfide bonding pattern. Further analysis of the pheromone mixture revealed paralogs to peptide hormones that contained mutations in receptor binding regions, such that these novel molecules may alter female physiology by acting as hormone agonists/antagonists. Cumulatively, gene co-option, duplication, and neofunctionalization have permitted recruitment of additional gene families for pheromone activity. Such independent co-option events may be playing a key role in salamander speciation by altering male traits that influence reproductive success. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. Recent advances in awakening silent biosynthetic gene clusters and linking orphan clusters to natural products in microorganisms.

    PubMed

    Chiang, Yi-Ming; Chang, Shu-Lin; Oakley, Berl R; Wang, Clay C C

    2011-02-01

    Secondary metabolites from microorganisms have a broad spectrum of applications, particularly in therapeutics. The growing number of sequenced microbial genomes has revealed a remarkably large number of natural product biosynthetic clusters for which the products are still unknown. These cryptic clusters are potentially a treasure house of medically useful compounds. The recent development of new methodologies has made it possible to begin unlock this treasure house, to discover new natural products and to determine their biosynthesis pathways. This review will highlight some of the most recent strategies to activate silent biosynthetic gene clusters and to elucidate their corresponding products and pathways.

  1. Base J represses genes at the end of polycistronic gene clusters in Leishmania major by promoting RNAP II termination

    PubMed Central

    Reynolds, David L.; Hofmeister, Brigitte T.; Cliffe, Laura; Siegel, T. Nicolai; Anderson, Britta A.; Beverley, Stephen M.; Schmitz, Robert J.; Sabatini, Robert

    2016-01-01

    Summary The genomes of kinetoplastids are organized into polycistronic gene clusters that are flanked by the modified DNA base J. Previous work has established a role of base J in promoting RNA polymerase II termination in Leishmania spp. where the loss of J leads to termination defects and transcription into adjacent gene clusters. It remains unclear whether these termination defects affect gene expression and whether read through transcription is detrimental to cell growth, thus explaining the essential nature of J. We now demonstrate that reduction of base J at specific sites within polycistronic gene clusters in L. major leads to read through transcription and increased expression of downstream genes in the cluster. Interestingly, subsequent transcription into the opposing polycistronic gene cluster does not lead to downregulation of sense mRNAs. These findings indicate a conserved role for J regulating transcription termination and expression of genes within polycistronic gene clusters in trypanosomatids. In contrast to the expectations often attributed to opposing transcription, the essential nature of J in Leishmania spp. is related to its role in gene repression rather than preventing transcriptional interference resulting from read through and dual strand transcription. PMID:27125778

  2. Horizontal Transfer and Death of a Fungal Secondary Metabolic Gene Cluster

    PubMed Central

    Campbell, Matthew A.; Rokas, Antonis; Slot, Jason C.

    2012-01-01

    A cluster composed of four structural and two regulatory genes found in several species of the fungal genus Fusarium (class Sordariomycetes) is responsible for the production of the red pigment bikaverin. We discovered that the unrelated fungus Botrytis cinerea (class Leotiomycetes) contains a cluster of five genes that is highly similar in sequence and gene order to the Fusarium bikaverin cluster. Synteny conservation, nucleotide composition, and phylogenetic analyses of the cluster genes indicate that the B. cinerea cluster was acquired via horizontal transfer from a Fusarium donor. Upon or subsequent to the transfer, the B. cinerea gene cluster became inactivated; one of the four structural genes is missing, two others are pseudogenes, and the fourth structural gene shows an accelerated rate of nonsynonymous substitutions along the B. cinerea lineage, consistent with relaxation of selective constraints. Interestingly, the bik4 regulatory gene is still intact and presumably functional, whereas bik5, which is a pathway-specific regulator, also shows a mild but significant acceleration of evolutionary rate along the B. cinerea lineage. This selective preservation of the bik4 regulator suggests that its conservation is due to its likely involvement in other non–bikaverin-related biological processes in B. cinerea. Thus, in addition to novel metabolism, horizontal transfer of wholesale metabolic gene clusters might also be contributing novel regulation. PMID:22294497

  3. A modified recombineering protocol for the genetic manipulation of gene clusters in Aspergillus fumigatus.

    PubMed

    Alcazar-Fuoli, Laura; Cairns, Timothy; Lopez, Jordi F; Zonja, Bozo; Pérez, Sandra; Barceló, Damià; Igarashi, Yasuhiro; Bowyer, Paul; Bignell, Elaine

    2014-01-01

    Genomic analyses of fungal genome structure have revealed the presence of physically-linked groups of genes, termed gene clusters, where collective functionality of encoded gene products serves a common biosynthetic purpose. In multiple fungal pathogens of humans and plants gene clusters have been shown to encode pathways for biosynthesis of secondary metabolites including metabolites required for pathogenicity. In the major mould pathogen of humans Aspergillus fumigatus, multiple clusters of co-ordinately upregulated genes were identified as having heightened transcript abundances, relative to laboratory cultured equivalents, during the early stages of murine infection. The aim of this study was to develop and optimise a methodology for manipulation of gene cluster architecture, thereby providing the means to assess their relevance to fungal pathogenicity. To this end we adapted a recombineering methodology which exploits lambda phage-mediated recombination of DNA in bacteria, for the generation of gene cluster deletion cassettes. By exploiting a pre-existing bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) library of A. fumigatus genomic clones we were able to implement single or multiple intra-cluster gene replacement events at both subtelomeric and telomere distal chromosomal locations, in both wild type and highly recombinogenic A. fumigatus isolates. We then applied the methodology to address the boundaries of a gene cluster producing a nematocidal secondary metabolite, pseurotin A, and to address the role of this secondary metabolite in insect and mammalian responses to A. fumigatus challenge.

  4. A Modified Recombineering Protocol for the Genetic Manipulation of Gene Clusters in Aspergillus fumigatus

    PubMed Central

    Alcazar-Fuoli, Laura; Cairns, Timothy; Lopez, Jordi F.; Zonja, Bozo; Pérez, Sandra; Barceló, Damià; Igarashi, Yasuhiro; Bowyer, Paul; Bignell, Elaine

    2014-01-01

    Genomic analyses of fungal genome structure have revealed the presence of physically-linked groups of genes, termed gene clusters, where collective functionality of encoded gene products serves a common biosynthetic purpose. In multiple fungal pathogens of humans and plants gene clusters have been shown to encode pathways for biosynthesis of secondary metabolites including metabolites required for pathogenicity. In the major mould pathogen of humans Aspergillus fumigatus, multiple clusters of co-ordinately upregulated genes were identified as having heightened transcript abundances, relative to laboratory cultured equivalents, during the early stages of murine infection. The aim of this study was to develop and optimise a methodology for manipulation of gene cluster architecture, thereby providing the means to assess their relevance to fungal pathogenicity. To this end we adapted a recombineering methodology which exploits lambda phage-mediated recombination of DNA in bacteria, for the generation of gene cluster deletion cassettes. By exploiting a pre-existing bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) library of A. fumigatus genomic clones we were able to implement single or multiple intra-cluster gene replacement events at both subtelomeric and telomere distal chromosomal locations, in both wild type and highly recombinogenic A. fumigatus isolates. We then applied the methodology to address the boundaries of a gene cluster producing a nematocidal secondary metabolite, pseurotin A, and to address the role of this secondary metabolite in insect and mammalian responses to A. fumigatus challenge. PMID:25372385

  5. Identification and characterization of a novel diterpene gene cluster in Aspergillus nidulans.

    PubMed

    Bromann, Kirsi; Toivari, Mervi; Viljanen, Kaarina; Vuoristo, Anu; Ruohonen, Laura; Nakari-Setälä, Tiina

    2012-01-01

    Fungal secondary metabolites are a rich source of medically useful compounds due to their pharmaceutical and toxic properties. Sequencing of fungal genomes has revealed numerous secondary metabolite gene clusters, yet products of many of these biosynthetic pathways are unknown since the expression of the clustered genes usually remains silent in normal laboratory conditions. Therefore, to discover new metabolites, it is important to find ways to induce the expression of genes in these otherwise silent biosynthetic clusters. We discovered a novel secondary metabolite in Aspergillus nidulans by predicting a biosynthetic gene cluster with genomic mining. A Zn(II)(2)Cys(6)-type transcription factor, PbcR, was identified, and its role as a pathway-specific activator for the predicted gene cluster was demonstrated. Overexpression of pbcR upregulated the transcription of seven genes in the identified cluster and led to the production of a diterpene compound, which was characterized with GC/MS as ent-pimara-8(14),15-diene. A change in morphology was also observed in the strains overexpressing pbcR. The activation of a cryptic gene cluster by overexpression of its putative Zn(II)(2)Cys(6)-type transcription factor led to discovery of a novel secondary metabolite in Aspergillus nidulans. Quantitative real-time PCR and DNA array analysis allowed us to predict the borders of the biosynthetic gene cluster. Furthermore, we identified a novel fungal pimaradiene cyclase gene as well as genes encoding 3-hydroxy-3-methyl-glutaryl-coenzyme A (HMG-CoA) reductase and a geranylgeranyl pyrophosphate (GGPP) synthase. None of these genes have been previously implicated in the biosynthesis of terpenes in Aspergillus nidulans. These results identify the first Aspergillus nidulans diterpene gene cluster and suggest a biosynthetic pathway for ent-pimara-8(14),15-diene.

  6. Organization and differential regulation of a cluster of lignin peroxidase genes of Phanerochaete chrysosporium

    Treesearch

    Philip. Stewart; Daniel. Cullen

    1999-06-01

    The lignin peroxidases of Phanerochaete chrysosporium are encoded by a minimum of 10 closely related genes. Physical and genetic mapping of a cluster of eight lip genes revealed six genes occurring in pairs and transcriptionally convergent, suggesting that portions of the lip family arose by gene duplication events. The completed sequence of 1ipG and lipJ, together...

  7. Chromosomal position effect influences the heterologous expression of genes and biosynthetic gene clusters in Streptomyces albus J1074.

    PubMed

    Bilyk, Bohdan; Horbal, Liliya; Luzhetskyy, Andriy

    2017-01-04

    Efforts to construct the Streptomyces host strain with enhanced yields of heterologous product have focussed mostly on engineering of primary metabolism and/or the deletion of endogenous biosynthetic gene clusters. However, other factors, such as chromosome compactization, have been shown to have a significant influence on gene expression levels in bacteria and fungi. The expression of genes and biosynthetic gene clusters may vary significantly depending on their location within the chromosome. Little is known about the position effect in actinomycetes, which are important producers of various industrially relevant bioactive molecules. To demonstrate an impact of the chromosomal position effect on the heterologous expression of genes and gene clusters in Streptomyces albus J1074, a transposon mutant library with randomly distributed transposon that includes a β-glucuronidase reporter gene was generated. Reporter gene expression levels have been shown to depend on the position on the chromosome. Using a combination of the transposon system and a φC31-based vector, the aranciamycin biosynthetic cluster was introduced randomly into the S. albus genome. The production levels of aranciamycin varied up to eightfold depending on the location of the gene cluster within the chromosome of S. albus J1074. One of the isolated mutant strains with an artificially introduced attachment site produced approximately 50% more aranciamycin than strains with endogenous attBs. In this study, we demonstrate that expression of the reporter gene and aranciamycin biosynthetic cluster in Streptomyces albus J1074 varies up to eightfold depending on its position on the chromosome. The integration of the heterologous cluster into different locations on the chromosome may significantly influence the titre of the produced substance. This knowledge can be used for the more efficient engineering of Actinobacteria via the relocation of the biosynthetic gene clusters and insertion of additional

  8. Two Neuronal G Proteins Are Involved in Chemosensation of the Caenorhabditis Elegans Dauer-Inducing Pheromone

    PubMed Central

    Zwaal, R. R.; Mendel, J. E.; Sternberg, P. W.; Plasterk, RHA.

    1997-01-01

    Caenorhabditis elegans uses chemosensation to determine its course of development. Young larvae can arrest as dauer larvae in response to increasing population density, which they measure by a nematode-excreted pheromone, and decreasing food supply. Dauer larvae can resume development in response to a decrease in pheromone and increase in food concentration. We show here that two novel G protein alpha subunits (GPA-2 and GPA-3) show promoter activity in subsets of chemosensory neurons and are involved in the decision to form dauer larvae primarily through the response to dauer pheromone. Dominant activating mutations in these G proteins result in constitutive, pheromone-independent dauer formation, whereas inactivation results in reduced sensitivity to pheromone, and, under certain conditions, an alteration in the response to food. Interactions between gpa-2, gpa-3 and other genes controlling dauer formation suggest that these G proteins may act in parallel to regulate the neuronal decision making that precedes dauer formation. PMID:9055081

  9. Improving the computational efficiency of recursive cluster elimination for gene selection.

    PubMed

    Luo, Lin-Kai; Huang, Deng-Feng; Ye, Ling-Jun; Zhou, Qi-Feng; Shao, Gui-Fang; Peng, Hong

    2011-01-01

    The gene expression data are usually provided with a large number of genes and a relatively small number of samples, which brings a lot of new challenges. Selecting those informative genes becomes the main issue in microarray data analysis. Recursive cluster elimination based on support vector machine (SVM-RCE) has shown the better classification accuracy on some microarray data sets than recursive feature elimination based on support vector machine (SVM-RFE). However, SVM-RCE is extremely time-consuming. In this paper, we propose an improved method of SVM-RCE called ISVM-RCE. ISVM-RCE first trains a SVM model with all clusters, then applies the infinite norm of weight coefficient vector in each cluster to score the cluster, finally eliminates the gene clusters with the lowest score. In addition, ISVM-RCE eliminates genes within the clusters instead of removing a cluster of genes when the number of clusters is small. We have tested ISVM-RCE on six gene expression data sets and compared their performances with SVM-RCE and linear-discriminant-analysis-based RFE (LDA-RFE). The experiment results on these data sets show that ISVM-RCE greatly reduces the time cost of SVM-RCE, meanwhile obtains comparable classification performance as SVM-RCE, while LDA-RFE is not stable.

  10. Genes for iron-sulphur cluster assembly are targets of abiotic stress in rice, Oryza sativa.

    PubMed

    Liang, Xuejiao; Qin, Lu; Liu, Peiwei; Wang, Meihuan; Ye, Hong

    2014-03-01

    Iron-sulphur (Fe-S) cluster assembly occurs in chloroplasts, mitochondria and cytosol, involving dozens of genes in higher plants. In this study, we have identified 41 putative Fe-S cluster assembly genes in rice (Oryza sativa) genome, and the expression of all genes was verified. To investigate the role of Fe-S cluster assembly as a metabolic pathway, we applied abiotic stresses to rice seedlings and analysed Fe-S cluster assembly gene expression by qRT-PCR. Our data showed that genes for Fe-S cluster assembly in chloroplasts of leaves are particularly sensitive to heavy metal treatments, and that Fe-S cluster assembly genes in roots were up-regulated in response to iron toxicity, oxidative stress and some heavy metal assault. The effect of each stress treatment on the Fe-S cluster assembly machinery demonstrated an unexpected tissue or organelle specificity, suggesting that the physiological relevance of the Fe-S cluster assembly is more complex than thought. Furthermore, our results may reveal potential candidate genes for molecular breeding of rice.

  11. Nonlinear biosynthetic gene cluster dose effect on penicillin production by Penicillium chrysogenum.

    PubMed

    Nijland, Jeroen G; Ebbendorf, Bjorg; Woszczynska, Marta; Boer, Rémon; Bovenberg, Roel A L; Driessen, Arnold J M

    2010-11-01

    Industrial penicillin production levels by the filamentous fungus Penicillium chrysogenum increased dramatically by classical strain improvement. High-yielding strains contain multiple copies of the penicillin biosynthetic gene cluster that encodes three key enzymes of the β-lactam biosynthetic pathway. We have analyzed the gene cluster dose effect on penicillin production using the high-yielding P. chrysogenum strain DS17690 that was cured from its native clusters. The amount of penicillin V produced increased with the penicillin biosynthetic gene cluster number but was saturated at high copy numbers. Likewise, transcript levels of the biosynthetic genes pcbAB [δ-(l-α-aminoadipyl)-l-cysteinyl-d-valine synthetase], pcbC (isopenicillin N synthase), and penDE (acyltransferase) correlated with the cluster copy number. Remarkably, the protein level of acyltransferase, which localizes to peroxisomes, was saturated already at low cluster copy numbers. At higher copy numbers, intracellular levels of isopenicillin N increased, suggesting that the acyltransferase reaction presents a limiting step at a high gene dose. Since the number and appearance of the peroxisomes did not change significantly with the gene cluster copy number, we conclude that the acyltransferase activity is limiting for penicillin biosynthesis at high biosynthetic gene cluster copy numbers. These results suggest that at a high penicillin production level, productivity is limited by the peroxisomal acyltransferase import activity and/or the availability of coenzyme A (CoA)-activated side chains.

  12. CTDGFinder: A Novel Homology-Based Algorithm for Identifying Closely Spaced Clusters of Tandemly Duplicated Genes.

    PubMed

    Ortiz, Juan F; Rokas, Antonis

    2017-01-01

    Closely spaced clusters of tandemly duplicated genes (CTDGs) contribute to the diversity of many phenotypes, including chemosensation, snake venom, and animal body plans. CTDGs have traditionally been identified subjectively as genomic neighborhoods containing several gene duplicates in close proximity; however, CTDGs are often highly variable with respect to gene number, intergenic distance, and synteny. This lack of formal definition hampers the study of CTDG evolutionary dynamics and the discovery of novel CTDGs in the exponentially growing body of genomic data. To address this gap, we developed a novel homology-based algorithm, CTDGFinder, which formalizes and automates the identification of CTDGs by examining the physical distribution of individual members of families of duplicated genes across chromosomes. Application of CTDGFinder accurately identified CTDGs for many well-known gene clusters (e.g., Hox and beta-globin gene clusters) in the human, mouse and 20 other mammalian genomes. Differences between previously annotated gene clusters and our inferred CTDGs were due to the exclusion of nonhomologs that have historically been considered parts of specific gene clusters, the inclusion or absence of genes between the CTDGs and their corresponding gene clusters, and the splitting of certain gene clusters into distinct CTDGs. Examination of human genes showing tissue-specific enhancement of their expression by CTDGFinder identified members of several well-known gene clusters (e.g., cytochrome P450s and olfactory receptors) and revealed that they were unequally distributed across tissues. By formalizing and automating CTDG identification, CTDGFinder will facilitate understanding of CTDG evolutionary dynamics, their functional implications, and how they are associated with phenotypic diversity. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e

  13. Ligand recognition in multiallelic pheromone receptors from the basidiomycete Schizophyllum commune studied in yeast.

    PubMed

    Hegner, J; Siebert-Bartholmei, C; Kothe, E

    1999-04-01

    The homobasidiomycete Schizophyllum commune encodes a multiallelic pheromone receptor system that distinguishes more than 20 nonself from at least 2 self pheromones. The well-investigated pheromone response system of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae was used to link the FUS1::lacZ reporter system to the heterologous pheromone receptors from S. commune. To investigate yeast G-protein binding, the unchanged heterologous receptor was compared to constructs carrying an exchange of the 3rd cytoplasmatic loop for the Ste2 sequence. A better coupling could be achieved with the altered constructs. In order to examine activation by single pheromones, an artificial peptide based on the sequence of a new putative pheromone gene, bap2(1), in the Balpha2 mating-type locus encoding the shortest pheromone found so far in fungal mating types was used. Thus, we have reassembled the pheromone recognition of the basidiomycete S. commune and constructed a system ideal for specificity analysis in the yeast S. cerevisiae. Copyright 1999 Academic Press.

  14. Ancient origin of elicitin gene clusters in Phytophthora genomes.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Rays H Y; Tyler, Brett M; Whisson, Stephen C; Hardham, Adrienne R; Govers, Francine

    2006-02-01

    The genus Phytophthora belongs to the oomycetes in the eukaryotic stramenopile lineage and is comprised of over 65 species that are all destructive plant pathogens on a wide range of dicotyledons. Phytophthora produces elicitins (ELIs), a group of extracellular elicitor proteins that cause a hypersensitive response in tobacco. Database mining revealed several new classes of elicitin-like (ELL) sequences with diverse elicitin domains in Phytophthora infestans, Phytophthora sojae, Phytophthora brassicae, and Phytophthora ramorum. ELIs and ELLs were shown to be unique to Phytophthora and Pythium species. They are ubiquitous among Phytophthora species and belong to one of the most highly conserved and complex protein families in the Phytophthora genus. Phylogeny construction with elicitin domains derived from 156 ELIs and ELLs showed that most of the diversified family members existed prior to divergence of Phytophthora species from a common ancestor. Analysis to discriminate diversifying and purifying selection showed that all 17 ELI and ELL clades are under purifying selection. Within highly similar ELI groups there was no evidence for positively selected amino acids suggesting that purifying selection contributes to the continued existence of this diverse protein family. Characteristic cysteine spacing patterns were found for each phylogenetic clade. Except for the canonical clade ELI-1, ELIs and ELLs possess C-terminal domains of variable length, many of which have a high threonine, serine, or proline content suggesting an association with the cell wall. In addition, some ELIs and ELLs have a predicted glycosylphosphatidylinositol site suggesting anchoring of the C-terminal domain to the cell membrane. The eli and ell genes belonging to different clades are clustered in the genomes. Overall, eli and ell genes are expressed at different levels and in different life cycle stages but those sharing the same phylogenetic clade appear to have similar expression patterns.

  15. Origin and diversification of a salamander sex pheromone system.

    PubMed

    Janssenswillen, Sunita; Vandebergh, Wim; Treer, Dag; Willaert, Bert; Maex, Margo; Van Bocxlaer, Ines; Bossuyt, Franky

    2015-02-01

    Sex pheromones form an important facet of reproductive strategies in many organisms throughout the Animal Kingdom. One of the oldest known sex pheromones in vertebrates are proteins of the Sodefrin Precursor-like Factor (SPF) system, which already had a courtship function in early salamanders. The subsequent evolution of salamanders is characterized by a diversification in courtship and reproduction, but little is known on how the SPF pheromone system diversified in relation to changing courtship strategies. Here, we combined transcriptomic, genomic, and phylogenetic analyses to investigate the evolution of the SPF pheromone system in nine salamandrid species with distinct courtship displays. First, we show that SPF originated from vertebrate three-finger proteins and diversified through multiple gene duplications in salamanders, while remaining a single copy in frogs. Next, we demonstrate that tail-fanning newts have retained a high phylogenetic diversity of SPFs, whereas loss of tail-fanning has been associated with a reduced importance or loss of SPF expression in the cloacal region. Finally, we show that the attractant decapeptide sodefrin is cleaved from larger SPF precursors that originated by a 62 bp insertion and consequent frameshift in an ancestral Cynops lineage. This led to the birth of a new decapeptide that rapidly evolved a pheromone function independently from uncleaved proteins.

  16. Identification and characterization of a fatty acyl reductase from a Spodoptera littoralis female gland involved in pheromone biosynthesis.

    PubMed

    Carot-Sans, G; Muñoz, L; Piulachs, M D; Guerrero, A; Rosell, G

    2015-02-01

    Fatty acyl-CoA reductases (FARs), the enzymes that catalyse reduction of a fatty acyl-CoA to the corresponding alcohol in insect pheromone biosynthesis, are postulated to play an important role in determining the proportion of each component in the pheromone blend. For the first time, we have isolated and characterized from the Egyptian cotton leaf worm Spodoptera littoralis (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) a FAR cDNA (Slit-FAR1), which appeared to be expressed only in the pheromone gland and was undetectable in other female tissues, such as fat body, ovaries, wings, legs or thorax. The encoded protein has been successfully expressed in a recombinant system, and the recombinant enzyme is able to produce the intermediate fatty acid alcohols of the pheromone biosynthesis of S. littoralis from the corresponding acyl-CoA precursors. The kinetic variables Km and Vmax, which have been calculated for each acyl-CoA pheromone precursor, suggest that in S. littoralis pheromone biosynthesis other biosynthetic enzymes (e.g. desaturases, acetyl transferase) should also contribute to the final ratio of components of the pheromone blend. In a phylogenetic analysis, Slit-FAR1 appeared grouped in a cluster of other FARs involved in the pheromone biosynthesis of other insects, with little or non-specificity for the natural pheromone precursors.

  17. Arrangement of the Clostridium baratii F7 Toxin Gene Cluster with Identification of a σ Factor That Recognizes the Botulinum Toxin Gene Cluster Promoters

    DOE PAGES

    Dover, Nir; Barash, Jason R.; Burke, Julianne N.; ...

    2014-05-22

    Botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) is the most poisonous substances known and its eight toxin types (A to H) are distinguished by the inability of polyclonal antibodies that neutralize one toxin type to neutralize any of the other seven toxin types. Infant botulism, an intestinal toxemia orphan disease, is the most common form of human botulism in the United States. It results from swallowed spores of Clostridium botulinum (or rarely, neurotoxigenic Clostridium butyricum or Clostridium baratii) that germinate and temporarily colonize the lumen of the large intestine, where, as vegetative cells, they produce botulinum toxin. Botulinum neurotoxin is encoded by the bontmore » gene that is part of a toxin gene cluster that includes several accessory genes. In this paper, we sequenced for the first time the complete botulinum neurotoxin gene cluster of nonproteolytic C. baratii type F7. Like the type E and the nonproteolytic type F6 botulinum toxin gene clusters, the C. baratii type F7 had an orfX toxin gene cluster that lacked the regulatory botR gene which is found in proteolytic C. botulinum strains and codes for an alternative σ factor. In the absence of botR, we identified a putative alternative regulatory gene located upstream of the C. baratii type F7 toxin gene cluster. This putative regulatory gene codes for a predicted σ factor that contains DNA-binding-domain homologues to the DNA-binding domains both of BotR and of other members of the TcdR-related group 5 of the σ70 family that are involved in the regulation of toxin gene expression in clostridia. We showed that this TcdR-related protein in association with RNA polymerase core enzyme specifically binds to the C. baratii type F7 botulinum toxin gene cluster promoters. Finally, this TcdR-related protein may therefore be involved in regulating the expression of the genes of the botulinum toxin gene cluster in neurotoxigenic C. baratii.« less

  18. Functional characterization of an alpha-factor-like Sordaria macrospora peptide pheromone and analysis of its interaction with its cognate receptor in Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

    PubMed

    Mayrhofer, Severine; Pöggeler, Stefanie

    2005-04-01

    The homothallic filamentous ascomycete Sordaria macrospora possesses genes which are thought to encode two pheromone precursors and two seven-transmembrane pheromone receptors. The pheromone precursor genes are termed ppg1 and ppg2. The putative products derived from the gene sequence show structural similarity to the alpha-factor precursors and a-factor precursors of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Likewise, sequence similarity has been found between the putative products of the pheromone receptor genes pre2 and pre1 and the S. cerevisiae Ste2p alpha-factor receptor and Ste3p a-factor receptor, respectively. To investigate whether the alpha-factor-like pheromone-receptor pair of S. macrospora is functional, a heterologous yeast assay was used. Our results show that the S. macrospora alpha-factor-like pheromone precursor PPG1 is processed into an active pheromone by yeast MATalpha cells. The S. macrospora PRE2 protein was demonstrated to be a peptide pheromone receptor. In yeast MATa cells lacking the endogenous Ste2p receptor, the S. macrospora PRE2 receptor facilitated all aspects of the pheromone response. Using a synthetic peptide, we can now predict the sequence of one active form of the S. macrospora peptide pheromone. We proved that S. macrospora wild-type strains secrete an active pheromone into the culture medium and that disruption of the ppg1 gene in S. macrospora prevents pheromone production. However, loss of the ppg1 gene does not affect vegetative growth or fertility. Finally, we established the yeast assay as an easy and useful system for analyzing pheromone production in developmental mutants of S. macrospora.

  19. Regulation of Isoprenoid Pheromone Biosynthesis in Bumblebee Males.

    PubMed

    Prchalová, Darina; Buček, Aleš; Brabcová, Jana; Žáček, Petr; Kindl, Jiří; Valterová, Irena; Pichová, Iva

    2016-02-02

    Males of the closely related species Bombus terrestris and Bombus lucorum attract conspecific females by completely different marking pheromones. MP of B. terrestris and B. lucorum pheromones contain mainly isoprenoid (ISP) compounds and fatty acid derivatives, respectively. Here, we studied the regulation of ISP biosynthesis in both bumblebees. RNA-seq and qRT-PCR analyses indicated that acetoacetyl-CoA thiolase (AACT), 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-CoA reductase (HMGR), and farnesyl diphosphate synthase (FPPS) transcripts are abundant in the B. terrestris labial gland. Maximal abundance of these transcripts correlated well with AACT enzymatic activity detected in the LG extracts. In contrast, transcript abundances of AACT, HMGR, and FPPS in B. lucorum were low, and AACT activity was not detected in LGs. These results suggest that transcriptional regulation plays a key role in the control of ISP biosynthetic gene expression and ISP pheromone biosynthesis in bumblebee males.

  20. Autocrine response of Schizosaccharomyces pombe haploid cells to mating pheromones.

    PubMed

    Kitamura, K; Nakamura, T; Miki, F; Shimoda, C

    1996-09-15

    The mating response of the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe is mediated by mating pheromones, M-factor and P-factor, produced by h- and h+ cells, respectively. When the M-factor receptor (Map3) was ectopically expressed in h- cells lacking the P-factor receptor (Mam2), they acquired mating competence in response to M-factor which they secreted. The autocrine response to P-factor in h- cells was so weak that mating competence was not acquired, although expression of the pheromone-responsive gene matl-Pm was detected. These observations support the notion that the intensity of cellular response to mating phermones is different between h- and h+ cells, although downstream pathways of the pheromone receptors are shared by the two mating types.

  1. Cloning and characterization of the goadsporin biosynthetic gene cluster from Streptomyces sp. TP-A0584.

    PubMed

    Onaka, Hiroyasu; Nakaho, Mizuho; Hayashi, Keiko; Igarashi, Yasuhiro; Furumai, Tamotsu

    2005-12-01

    The biosynthetic gene cluster of goadsporin, a polypeptide antibiotic containing thiazole and oxazole rings, was cloned from Streptomyces sp. TP-A0584. The cluster contains a structural gene, godA, and nine god (goadsporin) genes involved in post-translational modification, immunity and transcriptional regulation. Although the gene organization is similar to typical bacteriocin biosynthetic gene clusters, each goadsporin biosynthetic gene shows low homology to these genes. Goadsporin biosynthesis is initiated by the translation of godA, and the subsequent cyclization, dehydration and acetylation are probably catalysed by godD, godE, godF, godG and godH gene products. godI shows high similarity to the 54 kDa subunit of the signal recognition particle and plays an important role in goadsporin immunity. Furthermore, four goadsporin analogues were produced by site-directed mutagenesis of godA, suggesting that this biosynthesis machinery is used for the heterocyclization of peptides.

  2. Using Multi-Instance Hierarchical Clustering Learning System to Predict Yeast Gene Function

    PubMed Central

    Liao, Bo; Li, Yun; Jiang, Yan; Cai, Lijun

    2014-01-01

    Time-course gene expression datasets, which record continuous biological processes of genes, have recently been used to predict gene function. However, only few positive genes can be obtained from annotation databases, such as gene ontology (GO). To obtain more useful information and effectively predict gene function, gene annotations are clustered together to form a learnable and effective learning system. In this paper, we propose a novel multi-instance hierarchical clustering (MIHC) method to establish a learning system by clustering GO and compare this method with other learning system establishment methods. Multi-label support vector machine classifier and multi-label K-nearest neighbor classifier are used to verify these methods in four yeast time-course gene expression datasets. The MIHC method shows good performance, which serves as a guide to annotators or refines the annotation in detail. PMID:24621610

  3. The urease gene cluster of Vibrio parahaemolyticus does not influence the expression of the thermostable direct hemolysin (TDH) gene or the TDH-related hemolysin gene.

    PubMed

    Nakaguchi, Yoshitsugu; Okuda, Jun; Iida, Tetsuya; Nishibuchi, Mitsuaki

    2003-01-01

    In order to investigate why the thermostable direct hemolysin (TDH) and the TDH-related hemolysin (TRH) of Vibrio parahaemolyticus are produced at low levels from urease-positive strains, the effect of the functional urease gene cluster of V. parahaemolyticus on the expression of the tdh and trh genes was examined. Transcriptional lacZ fusions with the tdh1, tdh2, trh1 and trh2 genes representing variants of the tdh and trh genes were integrated into the chromosome of an Escherichia coli strain and a urease-negative V. parahaemolyticus strain. The plasmid-borne urease gene cluster introduced and expressed in these constructs did not affect expression of any of the fusion genes. The amount of TDH produced from a Kanagawa phenomenon-positive V. parahaemolyticus did not change by introduction of the urease gene cluster either. It was concluded therefore that the urease gene cluster is not involved in the regulation of tdh and trh expression.

  4. Precise cloning and tandem integration of large polyketide biosynthetic gene cluster using Streptomyces artificial chromosome system.

    PubMed

    Nah, Hee-Ju; Woo, Min-Woo; Choi, Si-Sun; Kim, Eung-Soo

    2015-09-16

    Direct cloning combined with heterologous expression of a secondary metabolite biosynthetic gene cluster has become a useful strategy for production improvement and pathway modification of potentially valuable natural products present at minute quantities in original isolates of actinomycetes. However, precise cloning and efficient overexpression of an entire biosynthetic gene cluster remains challenging due to the ineffectiveness of current genetic systems in manipulating large-sized gene clusters for heterologous as well as homologous expression. A versatile Escherichia coli-Streptomyces shuttle bacterial artificial chromosomal (BAC) conjugation vector, pSBAC, was used along with a cluster tandem integration approach to carry out homologous and heterologous overexpression of a large 80-kb polyketide biosynthetic pathway gene cluster of tautomycetin (TMC), which is a protein phosphatase PP1/PP2A inhibitor and T cell-specific immunosuppressant. Unique XbaI restriction sites were precisely inserted at both border regions of the TMC biosynthetic gene cluster within the chromosome of TMC-producing Streptomyces sp. CK4412, followed by site-specific recombination of pSBAC into the flanking region of the TMC gene cluster. The entire TMC gene cluster was then rescued as a single giant recombinant pSBAC by XbaI digestion of the chromosomal DNA as well as subsequent self-ligation. Next, the recombinant pSBAC construct containing the entire TMC cluster in E. coli was directly conjugated into model Streptomyces strains, resulting in rapid and enhanced TMC production. Moreover, introduction of the TMC cluster-containing pSBAC into wild-type Streptomyces sp. CK4412 as well as a recombinant S. coelicolor strain resulted in a chromosomal tandem repeat of the entire TMC cluster with 14-fold and 5.4-fold enhanced TMC productivities, respectively. The 80-kb TMC biosynthetic gene cluster was isolated in a single integration vector, pSBAC. Introduction of TMC biosynthetic gene cluster

  5. The joy of sex pheromones

    PubMed Central

    Gomez-Diaz, Carolina; Benton, Richard

    2013-01-01

    Sex pheromones provide an important means of communication to unite individuals for successful reproduction. Although sex pheromones are highly diverse across animals, these signals fulfil common fundamental roles in enabling identification of a mating partner of the opposite sex, the appropriate species and of optimal fecundity. In this review, we synthesize both classic and recent investigations on sex pheromones in a range of species, spanning nematode worms, insects and mammals. These studies reveal comparable strategies in how these chemical signals are produced, detected and processed in the brain to regulate sexual behaviours. Elucidation of sex pheromone communication mechanisms both defines outstanding models to understand the molecular and neuronal basis of chemosensory behaviours, and reveals how similar evolutionary selection pressures yield convergent solutions in distinct animal nervous systems. EMBO reports advance online publication 13 September 2013; doi:10.1038/embor.2013.140 PMID:24030282

  6. The joy of sex pheromones.

    PubMed

    Gomez-Diaz, Carolina; Benton, Richard

    2013-10-01

    Sex pheromones provide an important means of communication to unite individuals for successful reproduction. Although sex pheromones are highly diverse across animals, these signals fulfil common fundamental roles in enabling identification of a mating partner of the opposite sex, the appropriate species and of optimal fecundity. In this review, we synthesize both classic and recent investigations on sex pheromones in a range of species, spanning nematode worms, insects and mammals. These studies reveal comparable strategies in how these chemical signals are produced, detected and processed in the brain to regulate sexual behaviours. Elucidation of sex pheromone communication mechanisms both defines outstanding models to understand the molecular and neuronal basis of chemosensory behaviours, and reveals how similar evolutionary selection pressures yield convergent solutions in distinct animal nervous systems.

  7. 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

  8. High-throughput platform for the discovery of elicitors of silent bacterial gene clusters

    PubMed Central

    Seyedsayamdost, Mohammad R.

    2014-01-01

    Over the past decade, bacterial genome sequences have revealed an immense reservoir of biosynthetic gene clusters, sets of contiguous genes that have the potential to produce drugs or drug-like molecules. However, the majority of these gene clusters appear to be inactive for unknown reasons prompting terms such as “cryptic” or “silent” to describe them. Because natural products have been a major source of therapeutic molecules, methods that rationally activate these silent clusters would have a profound impact on drug discovery. Herein, a new strategy is outlined for awakening silent gene clusters using small molecule elicitors. In this method, a genetic reporter construct affords a facile read-out for activation of the silent cluster of interest, while high-throughput screening of small molecule libraries provides potential inducers. This approach was applied to two cryptic gene clusters in the pathogenic model Burkholderia thailandensis. The results not only demonstrate a prominent activation of these two clusters, but also reveal that the majority of elicitors are themselves antibiotics, most in common clinical use. Antibiotics, which kill B. thailandensis at high concentrations, act as inducers of secondary metabolism at low concentrations. One of these antibiotics, trimethoprim, served as a global activator of secondary metabolism by inducing at least five biosynthetic pathways. Further application of this strategy promises to uncover the regulatory networks that activate silent gene clusters while at the same time providing access to the vast array of cryptic molecules found in bacteria. PMID:24808135

  9. Sparse p-norm Nonnegative Matrix Factorization for clustering gene expression data.

    PubMed

    Liu, Weixiang; Yuan, Kehong

    2008-01-01

    Nonnegative Matrix Factorization (NMF) is a powerful tool for gene expression data analysis as it reduces thousands of genes to a few compact metagenes, especially in clustering gene expression samples for cancer class discovery. Enhancing sparseness of the factorisation can find only a few dominantly coexpressed metagenes and improve the clustering effectiveness. Sparse p-norm (p > 1) Nonnegative Matrix Factorization (Sp-NMF) is a more sparse representation method using high order norm to normalise the decomposed components. In this paper, we investigate the benefit of high order normalisation for clustering cancer-related gene expression samples. Experimental results demonstrate that Sp-NMF leads to robust and effective clustering in both automatically determining the cluster number, and achieving high accuracy.

  10. Pheromone-inducible conjugation in Enterococcus faecalis

    PubMed Central

    Kozlowicz, Briana K.; Dworkin, Martin; Dunny, Gary M.

    2009-01-01

    Pheromone-inducible transfer of the plasmid pCF10 in Enterococcus faecalis is regulated using a complicated network of proteins and RNAs. The plasmid itself has been assembled from parts garnered from a variety of sources, and many aspects of the system resemble a biological kluge. Recently several new functions of various pCF10 gene products that participate in regulation of plasmid transfer have been identified. The results indicate that selective pressures controlling the evolution of the plasmid have produced a highly complex regulatory network with multiple biological functions that may serve well as a model for the evolution of biological complexity. PMID:16503196

  11. Isolation and structural characterization of two water-borne pheromones from Euplotes crassus, a ciliate commonly known to carry membrane-bound pheromones.

    PubMed

    Alimenti, Claudio; Vallesi, Adriana; Federici, Sergio; di Giuseppe, Graziano; Fernando, Dini; Carratore, Vitale; Luporini, Pierangelo

    2011-01-01

    Ciliates comprise species synthesizing water-diffusible mating type factors or pheromones and species synthesizing insoluble, cell membrane-bound pheromones. Euplotes crassus has traditionally been placed in the latter group. In contrast with this notion, we found that E. crassus is a constitutive pheromone-secreting ciliate, like other Euplotes species. From cell-free filtrate preparations of the E. crassus strain L-2D, we isolated two distinct pheromones, designated as Ec-α and Ec-1, and determined their complete amino acid sequences by combined chemical and genetic approaches. The Ec-α pheromone sequence extends for 56 amino acid residues with six cysteines and shows a molecular mass of 6,183 Da, while the Ec-1 pheromone sequence extends for 45 amino acid residues with 10 cysteines and shows a molecular mass of 4,840 Da. Marked structural differences distinguish the full-length Ec-α and Ec-1 coding sequences, which have been cloned and characterized from the transcriptionally active macronuclear genome. They were taken as clear indication that the Ec-α and Ec-1 pheromones are specified by genes that are not allelic, but likely derived from a duplicated genetic locus of the transcriptionally silent micronuclear genome. © 2011 The Author(s). Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology© 2011 International Society of Protistologists.

  12. Engineered Streptomyces avermitilis host for heterologous expression of biosynthetic gene cluster for secondary metabolites

    PubMed Central

    KOMATSU, MAMORU; KOMATSU, KYOKO; KOIWAI, HANAE; YAMADA, YUUKI; KOZONE, IKUKO; IZUMIKAWA, MIHO; HASHIMOTO, JUNKO; TAKAGI, MOTOKI; OMURA, SATOSHI; SHIN-YA, KAZUO; CANE, DAVID E.; IKEDA, HARUO

    2014-01-01

    An industrial microorganism Streptomyces avermitilis, which is a producer of anthelmintic macrocyclic lactones, avermectins, has been constructed as a versatile model host for heterologous expression of genes encoding secondary metabolite biosynthesis. Twenty of the entire biosynthetic gene clusters for secondary metabolites were successively cloned and introduced into a versatile model host S. avermitilis SUKA17 or 22. Almost all S. avermitilis transformants carrying the entire gene cluster produced metabolites as a result of the expression of biosynthetic gene clusters introduced. A few transformants were unable to produce metabolites but their production was restored by the expression of biosynthetic genes using an alternative promoter or the expression of a regulatory gene in the gene cluster that controls the expression of biosynthetic genes in the cluster using an alternative promoter. Production of metabolites in some transformants of the versatile host was higher than that of the original producers and cryptic biosynthetic gene clusters in the original producer were also expressed in a versatile host. PMID:23654282

  13. The cylindrospermopsin gene cluster of Aphanizomenon sp. strain 10E6: organization and recombination.

    PubMed

    Stüken, Anke; Jakobsen, Kjetill S

    2010-08-01

    Cylindrospermopsin (CYN), a potent hepatoxin, occurs in freshwaters worldwide. Several cyanobacterial species produce the toxin, but the producing species vary between geographical regions. Aphanizomenon flos-aquae, a common algae species in temperate fresh and brackish waters, is one of the three well-documented CYN producers in European waters. So far, no genetic information on the CYN genes of this species has been available. Here, we describe the complete CYN gene cluster, including flanking regions from the German Aphanizomenon sp. strain 10E6 using a full genome sequencing approach by 454 pyrosequencing and bioinformatic identification of the gene cluster. In addition, we have sequenced a approximately 7 kb fragment covering the genes cyrC (partially), cyrA and cyrB (partially) of the same gene cluster in the CYN-producing Aphanizomenon sp. strains 10E9 and 22D11. Comparisons with the orthologous gene clusters of the Australian Cylindrospermopsis raciborskii strains AWT205 and CS505 and the partial gene cluster of the Israeli Aphanizomenon ovalisporum strain ILC-146 revealed a high gene sequence similarity, but also extensive rearrangements of gene order. The high sequence similarity (generally higher than that of 16S rRNA gene fragments from the same strains), atypical GC-content and signs of transposase activities support the suggestion that the CYN genes have been horizontally transferred.

  14. Improvement of gougerotin and nikkomycin production by engineering their biosynthetic gene clusters.

    PubMed

    Du, Deyao; Zhu, Yu; Wei, Junhong; Tian, Yuqing; Niu, Guoqing; Tan, Huarong

    2013-07-01

    Nikkomycins and gougerotin are peptidyl nucleoside antibiotics with broad biological activities. The nikkomycin biosynthetic gene cluster comprises one pathway-specific regulatory gene (sanG) and 21 structural genes, whereas the gene cluster for gougerotin biosynthesis includes one putative regulatory gene, one major facilitator superfamily transporter gene, and 13 structural genes. In the present study, we introduced sanG driven by six different promoters into Streptomyces ansochromogenes TH322. Nikkomycin production was increased significantly with the highest increase in engineered strain harboring hrdB promoter-driven sanG. In the meantime, we replaced the native promoter of key structural genes in the gougerotin (gou) gene cluster with the hrdB promoters. The heterologous producer Streptomyces coelicolor M1146 harboring the modified gene cluster produced gougerotin up to 10-fold more than strains carrying the unmodified cluster. Therefore, genetic manipulations of genes involved in antibiotics biosynthesis with the constitutive hrdB promoter present a robust, easy-to-use system generally useful for the improvement of antibiotics production in Streptomyces.

  15. Discovery and synthetic refactoring of tryptophan dimer gene clusters from the environment.

    PubMed

    Chang, Fang-Yuan; Ternei, Melinda A; Calle, Paula Y; Brady, Sean F

    2013-11-27

    Here we investigate bacterial tryptophan dimer (TD) biosynthesis by probing environmental DNA (eDNA) libraries for chromopyrrolic acid (CPA) synthase genes. Functional and bioinformatics analyses of TD clusters indicate that CPA synthase gene sequences diverge in concert with the functional output of their respective clusters, making this gene a powerful tool for guiding the discovery of novel TDs from the environment. Twelve unprecedented TD biosynthetic gene clusters that can be arranged into five groups (A-E) based on their ability to generate distinct TD core substructures were recovered from eDNA libraries. Four of these groups contain clusters from both cultured and culture independent studies, while the remaining group consists entirely of eDNA-derived clusters. The complete synthetic refactoring of a representative gene cluster from the latter eDNA specific group led to the characterization of the erdasporines, cytotoxins with a novel carboxy-indolocarbazole TD substructure. Analysis of CPA synthase genes in crude eDNA suggests the presence of additional TD gene clusters in soil environments.

  16. Oviposition pheromones in haematophagous insects.

    PubMed

    Seenivasagan, T; Vijayaraghavan, R

    2010-01-01

    Pheromones influencing oviposition behavior in females of haematophagous insects have been the interest of recent past by many group of scientists working on oviposition pheromones. Finding and choosing a good site for oviposition is a challenging task for females of haematophagous insects, especially in those insects which does not have the parental care. Their decisions have far-reaching and profound consequences for the life history of the offspring. In such blood feeding insects, the choice of oviposition site is affected by pheromones, which may function either as deterrents or stimulants in short range, while they may also act as repellents or attractants in long range perception. During the location of a suitable oviposition site for egg laying or a potential host for blood feeding, haematophagous insects mainly use olfactory and visual cues. These pheromones are produced by the ovipositing female or by conspecific larvae co-occurring with gravid females. Adult females detect oviposition pheromones by odor receptors on the antennae, as well as by contact chemoreceptors on tarsi, mouthparts and antennae. Different cues exploited by gravid females from a diversified arena include egg, larva, habitat, microbes, infusions and plant produced volatiles influence the oviposition behavior. Traps baited with pheromones, infusions, and insecticides shall be promising tools for monitoring and control of target insect using integrated vector management strategies. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Chiral methyl-branched pheromones.

    PubMed

    Ando, Tetsu; Yamakawa, Rei

    2015-07-01

    Insect pheromones are some of the most interesting natural products because they are utilized for interspecific communication between various insects, such as beetles, moths, ants, and cockroaches. A large number of compounds of many kinds have been identified as pheromone components, reflecting the diversity of insect species. While this review deals only with chiral methyl-branched pheromones, the chemical structures of more than one hundred non-terpene compounds have been determined by applying excellent analytical techniques. Furthermore, their stereoselective syntheses have been achieved by employing trustworthy chiral sources and ingenious enantioselective reactions. The information has been reviewed here not only to make them available for new research but also to understand the characteristic chemical structures of the chiral pheromones. Since biosynthetic studies are still limited, it might be meaningful to examine whether the structures, particularly the positions and configurations of the branched methyl groups, are correlated with the taxonomy of the pheromone producers and also with the function of the pheromones in communication systems.

  18. Sphingolipids regulate telomere clustering by affecting the transcription of genes involved in telomere homeostasis.

    PubMed

    Ikeda, Atsuko; Muneoka, Tetsuya; Murakami, Suguru; Hirota, Ayaka; Yabuki, Yukari; Karashima, Takefumi; Nakazono, Kota; Tsuruno, Masahiro; Pichler, Harald; Shirahige, Katsuhiko; Kodama, Yukiko; Shimamoto, Toshi; Mizuta, Keiko; Funato, Kouichi

    2015-07-15

    In eukaryotic organisms, including mammals, nematodes and yeasts, the ends of chromosomes, telomeres are clustered at the nuclear periphery. Telomere clustering is assumed to be functionally important because proper organization of chromosomes is necessary for proper genome function and stability. However, the mechanisms and physiological roles of telomere clustering remain poorly understood. In this study, we demonstrate a role for sphingolipids in telomere clustering in the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Because abnormal sphingolipid metabolism causes downregulation of expression levels of genes involved in telomere organization, sphingolipids appear to control telomere clustering at the transcriptional level. In addition, the data presented here provide evidence that telomere clustering is required to protect chromosome ends from DNA-damage checkpoint signaling. As sphingolipids are found in all eukaryotes, we speculate that sphingolipid-based regulation of telomere clustering and the protective role of telomere clusters in maintaining genome stability might be conserved in eukaryotes.

  19. Olfaction, pheromones and life.

    PubMed

    Hoskison, E E

    2013-12-01

    From an evolutionary standpoint, olfaction is one of the oldest senses, and one that affects all aspects of life. This review discusses the influence of olfaction and pheromones on life. A literature search was conducted using MEDLINE (1966-2012), Embase (1988-2012), The Cochrane Library (1993-2013) and Ovid (1966-2012). Olfaction plays an important role in life, from infancy through to adulthood and declining health in old age. Culture, memories and emotions, which add to life's complexity and overall enjoyment, are also influenced by olfaction. Olfaction has a chronological influence on life, affecting all aspects from the cradle to the grave; it plays a role in the quality of life as a key ingredient of human evolution, survival and enjoyment.

  20. Transcriptome Analysis of Aspergillus flavus Reveals veA-Dependent Regulation of Secondary Metabolite Gene Clusters, Including the Novel Aflavarin Cluster

    PubMed Central

    Cary, J. W.; Han, Z.; Yin, Y.; Lohmar, J. M.; Shantappa, S.; Harris-Coward, P. Y.; Mack, B.; Ehrlich, K. C.; Wei, Q.; Arroyo-Manzanares, N.; Uka, V.; Vanhaecke, L.; Bhatnagar, D.; Yu, J.; Nierman, W. C.; Johns, M. A.; Sorensen, D.; Shen, H.; De Saeger, S.; Diana Di Mavungu, J.

    2015-01-01

    The global regulatory veA gene governs development and secondary metabolism in numerous fungal species, including Aspergillus flavus. This is especially relevant since A. flavus infects crops of agricultural importance worldwide, contaminating them with potent mycotoxins. The most well-known are aflatoxins, which are cytotoxic and carcinogenic polyketide compounds. The production of aflatoxins and the expression of genes implicated in the production of these mycotoxins are veA dependent. The genes responsible for the synthesis of aflatoxins are clustered, a signature common for genes involved in fungal secondary metabolism. Studies of the A. flavus genome revealed many gene clusters possibly connected to the synthesis of secondary metabolites. Many of these metabolites are still unknown, or the association between a known metabolite and a particular gene cluster has not yet been established. In the present transcriptome study, we show that veA is necessary for the expression of a large number of genes. Twenty-eight out of the predicted 56 secondary metabolite gene clusters include at least one gene that is differentially expressed depending on presence or absence of veA. One of the clusters under the influence of veA is cluster 39. The absence of veA results in a downregulation of the five genes found within this cluster. Interestingly, our results indicate that the cluster is expressed mainly in sclerotia. Chemical analysis of sclerotial extracts revealed that cluster 39 is responsible for the production of aflavarin. PMID:26209694

  1. Transcriptome Analysis of Aspergillus flavus Reveals veA-Dependent Regulation of Secondary Metabolite Gene Clusters, Including the Novel Aflavarin Cluster.

    PubMed

    Cary, J W; Han, Z; Yin, Y; Lohmar, J M; Shantappa, S; Harris-Coward, P Y; Mack, B; Ehrlich, K C; Wei, Q; Arroyo-Manzanares, N; Uka, V; Vanhaecke, L; Bhatnagar, D; Yu, J; Nierman, W C; Johns, M A; Sorensen, D; Shen, H; De Saeger, S; Diana Di Mavungu, J; Calvo, A M

    2015-10-01

    The global regulatory veA gene governs development and secondary metabolism in numerous fungal species, including Aspergillus flavus. This is especially relevant since A. flavus infects crops of agricultural importance worldwide, contaminating them with potent mycotoxins. The most well-known are aflatoxins, which are cytotoxic and carcinogenic polyketide compounds. The production of aflatoxins and the expression of genes implicated in the production of these mycotoxins are veA dependent. The genes responsible for the synthesis of aflatoxins are clustered, a signature common for genes involved in fungal secondary metabolism. Studies of the A. flavus genome revealed many gene clusters possibly connected to the synthesis of secondary metabolites. Many of these metabolites are still unknown, or the association between a known metabolite and a particular gene cluster has not yet been established. In the present transcriptome study, we show that veA is necessary for the expression of a large number of genes. Twenty-eight out of the predicted 56 secondary metabolite gene clusters include at least one gene that is differentially expressed depending on presence or absence of veA. One of the clusters under the influence of veA is cluster 39. The absence of veA results in a downregulation of the five genes found within this cluster. Interestingly, our results indicate that the cluster is expressed mainly in sclerotia. Chemical analysis of sclerotial extracts revealed that cluster 39 is responsible for the production of aflavarin. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  2. The B-type lamin is required for somatic repression of testis-specific gene clusters

    PubMed Central

    Shevelyov, Y. Y.; Lavrov, S. A.; Mikhaylova, L. M.; Nurminsky, I. D.; Kulathinal, R. J.; Egorova, K. S.; Rozovsky, Y. M.; Nurminsky, D. I.

    2009-01-01

    Large clusters of coexpressed tissue-specific genes are abundant on chromosomes of diverse species. The genes coordinately misexpressed in diverse diseases are also found in similar clusters, suggesting that evolutionarily conserved mechanisms regulate expression of large multigenic regions both in normal development and in its pathological disruptions. Studies on individual loci suggest that silent clusters of coregulated genes are embedded in repressed chromatin domains, often localized to the nuclear periphery. To test this model at the genome-wide scale, we studied transcriptional regulation of large testis-specific gene clusters in somatic tissues of Drosophila. These gene clusters showed a drastic paucity of known expressed transgene insertions, indicating that they indeed are embedded in repressed chromatin. Bioinformatics analysis suggested the major role for the B-type lamin, LamDmo, in repression of large testis-specific gene clusters, showing that in somatic cells as many as three-quarters of these clusters interact with LamDmo. Ablation of LamDmo by using mutants and RNAi led to detachment of testis-specific clusters from nuclear envelope and to their selective transcriptional up-regulation in somatic cells, thus providing the first direct evidence for involvement of the B-type lamin in tissue-specific gene repression. Finally, we found that transcriptional activation of the lamina-bound testis-specific gene cluster in male germ line is coupled with its translocation away from the nuclear envelope. Our studies, which directly link nuclear architecture with coordinated regulation of tissue-specific genes, advance understanding of the mechanisms underlying both normal cell differentiation and developmental disorders caused by lesions in the B-type lamins and interacting proteins. PMID:19218438

  3. Birth of Four Chimeric Plastid Gene Clusters in Japanese Umbrella Pine

    PubMed Central

    Hsu, Chih-Yao; Wu, Chung-Shien; Chaw, Shu-Miaw

    2016-01-01

    Many genes in the plastid genomes (plastomes) of plants are organized as gene clusters, in which genes are co-transcribed, resembling bacterial operons. These plastid operons are highly conserved, even among conifers, whose plastomes are highly rearranged relative to other seed plants. We have determined the complete plastome sequence of Sciadopitys verticillata (Japanese umbrella pine), the sole member of Sciadopityaceae. The Sciadopitys plastome is characterized by extensive inversions, pseudogenization of four tRNA genes after tandem duplications, and a unique pair of 370-bp inverted repeats involved in the formation of isomeric plastomes. We showed that plastomic inversions in Sciadopitys have led to shuffling of the remote conserved operons, resulting in the birth of four chimeric gene clusters. Our data also demonstrated that the relocated genes can be co-transcribed in these chimeric gene clusters. The plastome of Sciadopitys advances our current understanding of how the conifer plastomes have evolved toward increased diversity and complexity. PMID:27269365

  4. Improved efficiency in amplification of Escherichia coli o-antigen gene clusters using genome-wide sequence comparison

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Background: In many bacteria including E. coli, genes encoding O-antigens are clustered in the chromosome, with a 39-bp JUMPstart sequence and gnd gene located upstream and downstream of the cluster, respectively. For determining the DNA sequence of the E. coli O-antigen gene cluster, one set of P...

  5. Isolation and Characterization of the Gibberellin Biosynthetic Gene Cluster in Sphaceloma manihoticola▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Bömke, Christiane; Rojas, Maria Cecilia; Gong, Fan; Hedden, Peter; Tudzynski, Bettina

    2008-01-01

    Gibberellins (GAs) are tetracyclic diterpenoid phytohormones that were first identified as secondary metabolites of the fungus Fusarium fujikuroi (teleomorph, Gibberella fujikuroi). GAs were also found in the cassava pathogen Sphaceloma manihoticola, but the spectrum of GAs differed from that in F. fujikuroi. In contrast to F. fujikuroi, the GA biosynthetic pathway has not been studied in detail in S. manihoticola, and none of the GA biosynthetic genes have been cloned from the species. Here, we present the identification of the GA biosynthetic gene cluster from S. manihoticola consisting of five genes encoding a bifunctional ent-copalyl/ent-kaurene synthase (CPS/KS), a pathway-specific geranylgeranyl diphosphate synthase (GGS2), and three cytochrome P450 monooxygenases. The functions of all of the genes were analyzed either by a gene replacement approach or by complementing the corresponding F. fujikuroi mutants. The cluster organization and gene functions are similar to those in F. fujikuroi. However, the two border genes in the Fusarium cluster encoding the GA4 desaturase (DES) and the 13-hydroxylase (P450-3) are absent in the S. manihoticola GA gene cluster, consistent with the spectrum of GAs produced by this fungus. The close similarity between the two GA gene clusters, the identical gene functions, and the conserved intron positions suggest a common evolutionary origin despite the distant relatedness of the two fungi. PMID:18567680

  6. Comparative and Genetic Analyses of the Putative Vibrio cholerae Lipopolysaccharide Core Oligosaccharide Biosynthesis (wav) Gene Cluster

    PubMed Central

    Nesper, Jutta; Kraiß, Anita; Schild, Stefan; Blaβ, Julia; Klose, Karl E.; Bockemühl, Jochen; Reidl, Joachim

    2002-01-01

    We identified five different putative wav gene cluster types, which are responsible for the synthesis of the core oligosaccharide (OS) region of Vibrio cholerae lipopolysaccharide. Preliminary evidence that the genes encoded by this cluster are involved in core OS biosynthesis came from analysis of the recently released O1 El Tor V. cholerae genome sequence and sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis analysis of O1 El Tor mutant strains defective in three genes (waaF, waaL, and wavB). Investigations of 38 different V. cholerae strains by Southern blotting, PCR, and sequencing analyses showed that the O1 El Tor wav gene cluster type is prevalent among clinical isolates of different serogroups associated with cholera and environmental O1 strains. In contrast, we found differences in the wav gene contents of 19 unrelated non-O1, non-O139 environmental and human isolates not associated with cholera. These strains contained four new wav gene cluster types that differ from each other in distinct gene loci, providing evidence for horizontal transfer of wav genes and for limited structural diversity of the core OS among V. cholerae isolates. Our results show genetic diversity in the core OS biosynthesis gene cluster and predominance of the type 1 wav gene locus in strains associated with clinical cholera, suggesting that a specific core OS structure could contribute to V. cholerae virulence. PMID:11953379

  7. Measuring Cluster Stability in a Large Scale Phylogenetic Analysis of Functional Genes in Metagenomes Using pplacer.

    PubMed

    Land, Tyler A; Fizzano, Perry; Kodner, Robin B

    2016-01-01

    Analysis of metagenomic sequence data requires a multi-stage workflow. The results of each intermediate step possess an inherent uncertainty and potentially impact the as-yet-unmeasured statistical significance of downstream analyses. Here, we describe our phylogenetic analysis pipeline which uses the pplacer program to place many shotgun sequences corresponding to a single functional gene onto a fixed phylogenetic tree. We then use the squash clustering method to compare multiple samples with respect to that gene. We approximate the statistical significance of each gene's clustering result by measuring its cluster stability, the consistency of that clustering result when the probabilistic placements made by pplacer are systematically reassigned and then clustered again, as measured by the adjusted Rand Index. We find that among the genes investigated, the majority of analyses are stable, based on the average adjusted Rand Index. We investigated properties of each gene that may explain less stable results. These genes tended to have less convex reference trees, less total reads recruited to the gene, and a greater Expected Distance between Placement Locations as given by pplacer when examined in aggregate. However, for an individual functional gene, these measures alone do not predict cluster stability.

  8. A rough set based rational clustering framework for determining correlated genes.

    PubMed

    Jeyaswamidoss, Jeba Emilyn; Thangaraj, Kesavan; Ramar, Kadarkarai; Chitra, Muthusamy

    2016-06-01

    Cluster analysis plays a foremost role in identifying groups of genes that show similar behavior under a set of experimental conditions. Several clustering algorithms have been proposed for identifying gene behaviors and to understand their significance. The principal aim of this work is to develop an intelligent rough clustering technique, which will efficiently remove the irrelevant dimensions in a high-dimensional space and obtain appropriate meaningful clusters. This paper proposes a novel biclustering technique that is based on rough set theory. The proposed algorithm uses correlation coefficient as a similarity measure to simultaneously cluster both the rows and columns of a gene expression data matrix and mean squared residue to generate the initial biclusters. Furthermore, the biclusters are refined to form the lower and upper boundaries by determining the membership of the genes in the clusters using mean squared residue. The algorithm is illustrated with yeast gene expression data and the experiment proves the effectiveness of the method. The main advantage is that it overcomes the problem of selection of initial clusters and also the restriction of one object belonging to only one cluster by allowing overlapping of biclusters.

  9. Modeling and visualizing uncertainty in gene expression clusters using dirichlet process mixtures.

    PubMed

    Rasmussen, Carl Edward; de la Cruz, Bernard J; Ghahramani, Zoubin; Wild, David L

    2009-01-01

    Although the use of clustering methods has rapidly become one of the standard computational approaches in the literature of microarray gene expression data, little attention has been paid to uncertainty in the results obtained. Dirichlet process mixture (DPM) models provide a nonparametric Bayesian alternative to the bootstrap approach to modeling uncertainty in gene expression clustering. Most previously published applications of Bayesian model-based clustering methods have been to short time series data. In this paper, we present a case study of the application of nonparametric Bayesian clustering methods to the clustering of high-dimensional nontime series gene expression data using full Gaussian covariances. We use the probability that two genes belong to the same cluster in a DPM model as a measure of the similarity of these gene expression profiles. Conversely, this probability can be used to define a dissimilarity measure, which, for the purposes of visualization, can be input to one of the standard linkage algorithms used for hierarchical clustering. Biologically plausible results are obtained from the Rosetta compendium of expression profiles which extend previously published cluster analyses of this data.

  10. Single mutation to a sex pheromone receptor provides adaptive specificity between closely related moth species

    PubMed Central

    Leary, Greg P.; Allen, Jean E.; Bunger, Peggy L.; Luginbill, Jena B.; Linn, Charles E.; Macallister, Irene E.; Kavanaugh, Michael P.; Wanner, Kevin W.

    2012-01-01

    Sex pheromone communication, acting as a prezygotic barrier to mating, is believed to have contributed to the speciation of moths and butterflies in the order Lepidoptera. Five decades after the discovery of the first moth sex pheromone, little is known about the molecular mechanisms that underlie the evolution of pheromone communication between closely related species. Although Asian and European corn borers (ACB and ECB) can be interbred in the laboratory, they are behaviorally isolated from mating naturally by their responses to subtly different sex pheromone isomers, (E)-12- and (Z)-12-tetradecenyl acetate and (E)-11- and (Z)-11-tetradecenyl acetate (ACB: E12, Z12; ECB; E11, Z11). Male moth olfactory systems respond specifically to the pheromone blend produced by their conspecific females. In vitro, ECB(Z) odorant receptor 3 (OR3), a sex pheromone receptor expressed in male antennae, responds strongly to E11 but also generally to the Z11, E12, and Z12 pheromones. In contrast, we show that ACB OR3, a gene that has been subjected to positive selection (ω = 2.9), responds preferentially to the ACB E12 and Z12 pheromones. In Ostrinia species the amino acid residue corresponding to position 148 in transmembrane domain 3 of OR3 is alanine (A), except for ACB OR3 that has a threonine (T) in this position. Mutation of this residue from A to T alters the pheromone recognition pattern by selectively reducing the E11 response ∼14-fold. These results suggest that discrete mutations that narrow the specificity of more broadly responsive sex pheromone receptors may provide a mechanism that contributes to speciation. PMID:22891317

  11. Characterization of a plasmid-encoded urease gene cluster found in members of the family Enterobacteriaceae.

    PubMed

    D'Orazio, S E; Collins, C M

    1993-03-01

    Plasmid-encoded urease gene clusters found in uropathogenic isolates of Escherichia coli, Providencia stuartii, and Salmonella cubana demonstrated DNA homology, similar positions of restriction endonuclease cleavage sites, and manners of urease expression and therefore represent the same locus. DNA sequence analysis indicated that the plasmid-encoded urease genes are closely related to the Proteus mirabilis urease genes.

  12. Leveraging long sequencing reads to investigate R-gene clustering and variation in sugar beet

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Host-pathogen interactions are of prime importance to modern agriculture. Plants utilize various types of resistance genes to mitigate pathogen damage. Identification of the specific gene responsible for a specific resistance can be difficult due to duplication and clustering within R-gene families....

  13. Prediction of operon-like gene clusters in the Arabidopsis thaliana genome based on co-expression analysis of neighboring genes.

    PubMed

    Wada, Masayoshi; Takahashi, Hiroki; Altaf-Ul-Amin, Md; Nakamura, Kensuke; Hirai, Masami Y; Ohta, Daisaku; Kanaya, Shigehiko

    2012-07-15

    Operon-like arrangements of genes occur in eukaryotes ranging from yeasts and filamentous fungi to nematodes, plants, and mammals. In plants, several examples of operon-like gene clusters involved in metabolic pathways have recently been characterized, e.g. the cyclic hydroxamic acid pathways in maize, the avenacin biosynthesis gene clusters in oat, the thalianol pathway in Arabidopsis thaliana, and the diterpenoid momilactone cluster in rice. Such operon-like gene clusters are defined by their co-regulation or neighboring positions within immediate vicinity of chromosomal regions. A comprehensive analysis of the expression of neighboring genes therefore accounts a crucial step to reveal the complete set of operon-like gene clusters within a genome. Genome-wide prediction of operon-like gene clusters should contribute to functional annotation efforts and provide novel insight into evolutionary aspects acquiring certain biological functions as well. We predicted co-expressed gene clusters by comparing the Pearson correlation coefficient of neighboring genes and randomly selected gene pairs, based on a statistical method that takes false discovery rate (FDR) into consideration for 1469 microarray gene expression datasets of A. thaliana. We estimated that A. thaliana contains 100 operon-like gene clusters in total. We predicted 34 statistically significant gene clusters consisting of 3 to 22 genes each, based on a stringent FDR threshold of 0.1. Functional relationships among genes in individual clusters were estimated by sequence similarity and functional annotation of genes. Duplicated gene pairs (determined based on BLAST with a cutoff of E<10(-5)) are included in 27 clusters. Five clusters are associated with metabolism, containing P450 genes restricted to the Brassica family and predicted to be involved in secondary metabolism. Operon-like clusters tend to include genes encoding bio-machinery associated with ribosomes, the ubiquitin/proteasome system, secondary

  14. A cross-species bi-clustering approach to identifying conserved co-regulated genes

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Jiangwen; Jiang, Zongliang; Tian, Xiuchun; Bi, Jinbo

    2016-01-01

    Motivation: A growing number of studies have explored the process of pre-implantation embryonic development of multiple mammalian species. However, the conservation and variation among different species in their developmental programming are poorly defined due to the lack of effective computational methods for detecting co-regularized genes that are conserved across species. The most sophisticated method to date for identifying conserved co-regulated genes is a two-step approach. This approach first identifies gene clusters for each species by a cluster analysis of gene expression data, and subsequently computes the overlaps of clusters identified from different species to reveal common subgroups. This approach is ineffective to deal with the noise in the expression data introduced by the complicated procedures in quantifying gene expression. Furthermore, due to the sequential nature of the approach, the gene clusters identified in the first step may have little overlap among different species in the second step, thus difficult to detect conserved co-regulated genes. Results: We propose a cross-species bi-clustering approach which first denoises the gene expression data of each species into a data matrix. The rows of the data matrices of different species represent the same set of genes that are characterized by their expression patterns over the developmental stages of each species as columns. A novel bi-clustering method is then developed to cluster genes into subgroups by a joint sparse rank-one factorization of all the data matrices. This method decomposes a data matrix into a product of a column vector and a row vector where the column vector is a consistent indicator across the matrices (species) to identify the same gene cluster and the row vector specifies for each species the developmental stages that the clustered genes co-regulate. Efficient optimization algorithm has been developed with convergence analysis. This approach was first validated on

  15. Picocyanobacteria containing a novel pigment gene cluster dominate the brackish water Baltic Sea.

    PubMed

    Larsson, John; Celepli, Narin; Ininbergs, Karolina; Dupont, Christopher L; Yooseph, Shibu; Bergman, Bigitta; Ekman, Martin

    2014-09-01

    Photoautotrophic picocyanobacteria harvest light via phycobilisomes (PBS) consisting of the pigments phycocyanin (PC) and phycoerythrin (PE), encoded by genes in conserved gene clusters. The presence and arrangement of these gene clusters give picocyanobacteria characteristic light absorption properties and allow the colonization of specific ecological niches. To date, a full understanding of the evolution and distribution of the PBS gene cluster in picocyanobacteria has been hampered by the scarcity of genome sequences from fresh- and brackish water-adapted strains. To remediate this, we analysed genomes assembled from metagenomic samples collected along a natural salinity gradient, and over the course of a growth season, in the Baltic Sea. We found that while PBS gene clusters in picocyanobacteria sampled in marine habitats were highly similar to known references, brackish-adapted genotypes harboured a novel type not seen in previously sequenced genomes. Phylogenetic analyses showed that the novel gene cluster belonged to a clade of uncultivated picocyanobacteria that dominate the brackish Baltic Sea throughout the summer season, but are uncommon in other examined aquatic ecosystems. Further, our data suggest that the PE genes were lost in the ancestor of PC-containing coastal picocyanobacteria and that multiple horizontal gene transfer events have re-introduced PE genes into brackish-adapted strains, including the novel clade discovered here.

  16. Bacillus cereus-type polyhydroxyalkanoate biosynthetic gene cluster contains R-specific enoyl-CoA hydratase gene.

    PubMed

    Kihara, Takahiro; Hiroe, Ayaka; Ishii-Hyakutake, Manami; Mizuno, Kouhei; Tsuge, Takeharu

    2017-08-01

    Bacillus cereus and Bacillus megaterium both accumulate polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA) but their PHA biosynthetic gene (pha) clusters that code for proteins involved in PHA biosynthesis are different. Namely, a gene encoding MaoC-like protein exists in the B. cereus-type pha cluster but not in the B. megaterium-type pha cluster. MaoC-like protein has an R-specific enoyl-CoA hydratase (R-hydratase) activity and is referred to as PhaJ when involved in PHA metabolism. In this study, the pha cluster of B. cereus YB-4 was characterized in terms of PhaJ's function. In an in vitro assay, PhaJ from B. cereus YB-4 (PhaJYB4) exhibited hydration activity toward crotonyl-CoA. In an in vivo assay using Escherichia coli as a host for PHA accumulation, the recombinant strain expressing PhaJYB4 and PHA synthase led to increased PHA accumulation, suggesting that PhaJYB4 functioned as a monomer supplier. The monomer composition of the accumulated PHA reflected the substrate specificity of PhaJYB4, which appeared to prefer short chain-length substrates. The pha cluster from B. cereus YB-4 functioned to accumulate PHA in E. coli; however, it did not function when the phaJYB4 gene was deleted. The B. cereus-type pha cluster represents a new example of a pha cluster that contains the gene encoding PhaJ.

  17. Association of interleukin 1 gene cluster and interleukin 1 receptor gene polymorphisms with ischemic heart failure.

    PubMed

    Mahmoudi, M J; Taghvaei, M; Harsini, S; Amirzargar, A A; Hedayat, M; Mahmoudi, M; Nematipour, E; Farhadi, E; Esfahanian, N; Sadr, M; Nourijelyani, K; Rezaei, N

    Proinflammatory cytokines have been known to play a considerable part in the pathomechanisms of chronic heart failure (CHF). Given the importance of proinflammatory cytokines in the context of the failing heart, we assessed whether the polymorphisms of interleukin (IL)-1 gene cluster, including IL-1α, IL-1β, and IL-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1RA) and IL-1R gene are predictors of CHF due to ischemic heart disease. Forty- three patients with ischemic heart failure were recruited in this study as patients group and compared with 140 healthy unrelated control subjects. Using polymerase chain reaction with sequence-specific primers method, the allele and genotype frequency of 5 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) within the IL-1α (-889), IL-1β (-511, +3962), IL-1R (psti 1970), and IL-1RA (mspa1 11100) genes were determined. The frequency of the IL-1β -511/C allele was significantly higher in the patient group compared to that in the control group (p = 0.031). The IL-1β (-511) C/C genotype was significantly overrepresented in patients compared to controls (p = 0.022). Particular allele and genotype in IL-1β gene were overrepresented in patients with ischemic heart failure, possibly affecting the individual susceptibility to this disease (Tab. 1, Ref. 27).

  18. High or low correlation between co-occuring gene clusters and 16S rRNA gene phylogeny.

    PubMed

    Rudi, Knut; Sekelja, Monika

    2013-02-01

    Ribosomal RNA (rRNA) genes are universal for all living organisms. Yet, the correspondence between genome composition and rRNA phylogeny remains poorly known. The aim of this study was to use the information from genome sequence databases to address the correlation between rRNA gene phylogeny and total gene composition in bacteria. This was done by analysing 327 genomes with TIGRFAM functional gene annotations. Our approach consisted of two steps. First, we searched for discriminatory clusters of co-occurring genes. Using a multivariate statistical approach, we identified 11 such clusters which contain genes that were co-occurring only in a subset of genomes and contributed to explain the gene content differences between genome subsets. Second, we mapped the discovered clusters to 16S rRNA-based phylogeny and calculated the correlation between co-occuring genes and phylogeny. Six of the 11 clusters exhibited significant correlation with 16S rRNA gene phylogeny. The most distinct phylogenetic finding was a high correlation between iron-sulfur oxidoreductases in combination with carbon nitrogen ligases and Chlorobium. The other correlations identified covered relatively large phylogroups: Actinobacteria were positively associated with kinases, while Gammaproteobacteria were positively associated with methylases and acyltransferases. The suggested functional differences between higher phylogroups, however, need experimental verification.

  19. Candidate pheromone receptors of codling moth Cydia pomonella respond to pheromones and kairomones

    PubMed Central

    Cattaneo, Alberto Maria; Gonzalez, Francisco; Bengtsson, Jonas M.; Corey, Elizabeth A.; Jacquin-Joly, Emmanuelle; Montagné, Nicolas; Salvagnin, Umberto; Walker, William B.; Witzgall, Peter; Anfora, Gianfranco; Bobkov, Yuriy V.

    2017-01-01

    Olfaction plays a dominant role in the mate-finding and host selection behaviours of the codling moth (Cydia pomonella), an important pest of apple, pear and walnut orchards worldwide. Antennal transcriptome analysis revealed a number of abundantly expressed genes related to the moth olfactory system, including those encoding the olfactory receptors (ORs) CpomOR1, CpomOR3 and CpomOR6a, which belong to the pheromone receptor (PR) lineage, and the co-receptor (CpomOrco). Using heterologous expression, in both Drosophila olfactory sensory neurones and in human embryonic kidney cells, together with electrophysiological recordings and calcium imaging, we characterize the basic physiological and pharmacological properties of these receptors and demonstrate that they form functional ionotropic receptor channels. Both the homomeric CpomOrco and heteromeric CpomOrco + OR complexes can be activated by the common Orco agonists VUAA1 and VUAA3, as well as inhibited by the common Orco antagonists amiloride derivatives. CpomOR3 responds to the plant volatile compound pear ester ethyl-(E,Z)-2,4-decadienoate, while CpomOR6a responds to the strong pheromone antagonist codlemone acetate (E,E)-8,10-dodecadien-1-yl acetate. These findings represent important breakthroughs in the deorphanization of codling moth pheromone receptors, as well as more broadly into insect ecology and evolution and, consequently, for the development of sustainable pest control strategies based on manipulating chemosensory communication. PMID:28117454

  20. Candidate pheromone receptors of codling moth Cydia pomonella respond to pheromones and kairomones.

    PubMed

    Cattaneo, Alberto Maria; Gonzalez, Francisco; Bengtsson, Jonas M; Corey, Elizabeth A; Jacquin-Joly, Emmanuelle; Montagné, Nicolas; Salvagnin, Umberto; Walker, William B; Witzgall, Peter; Anfora, Gianfranco; Bobkov, Yuriy V

    2017-01-24

    Olfaction plays a dominant role in the mate-finding and host selection behaviours of the codling moth (Cydia pomonella), an important pest of apple, pear and walnut orchards worldwide. Antennal transcriptome analysis revealed a number of abundantly expressed genes related to the moth olfactory system, including those encoding the olfactory receptors (ORs) CpomOR1, CpomOR3 and CpomOR6a, which belong to the pheromone receptor (PR) lineage, and the co-receptor (CpomOrco). Using heterologous expression, in both Drosophila olfactory sensory neurones and in human embryonic kidney cells, together with electrophysiological recordings and calcium imaging, we characterize the basic physiological and pharmacological properties of these receptors and demonstrate that they form functional ionotropic receptor channels. Both the homomeric CpomOrco and heteromeric CpomOrco + OR complexes can be activated by the common Orco agonists VUAA1 and VUAA3, as well as inhibited by the common Orco antagonists amiloride derivatives. CpomOR3 responds to the plant volatile compound pear ester ethyl-(E,Z)-2,4-decadienoate, while CpomOR6a responds to the strong pheromone antagonist codlemone acetate (E,E)-8,10-dodecadien-1-yl acetate. These findings represent important breakthroughs in the deorphanization of codling moth pheromone receptors, as well as more broadly into insect ecology and evolution and, consequently, for the development of sustainable pest control strategies based on manipulating chemosensory communication.

  1. The evolutionary life cycle of the polysaccharide biosynthetic gene cluster based on the Sphingomonadaceae.

    PubMed

    Wu, Mengmeng; Huang, Haidong; Li, Guoqiang; Ren, Yi; Shi, Zhong; Li, Xiaoyan; Dai, Xiaohui; Gao, Ge; Ren, Mengnan; Ma, Ting

    2017-04-21

    Although clustering of genes from the same metabolic pathway is a widespread phenomenon, the evolution of the polysaccharide biosynthetic gene cluster remains poorly understood. To determine the evolution of this pathway, we identified a scattered production pathway of the polysaccharide sanxan by Sphingomonas sanxanigenens NX02, and compared the distribution of genes between sphingan-producing and other Sphingomonadaceae strains. This allowed us to determine how the scattered sanxan pathway developed, and how the polysaccharide gene cluster evolved. Our findings suggested that the evolution of microbial polysaccharide biosynthesis gene clusters is a lengthy cyclic process comprising cluster 1 → scatter → cluster 2. The sanxan biosynthetic pathway proved the existence of a dispersive process. We also report the complete genome sequence of NX02, in which we identified many unstable genetic elements and powerful secretion systems. Furthermore, nine enzymes for the formation of activated precursors, four glycosyltransferases, four acyltransferases, and four polymerization and export proteins were identified. These genes were scattered in the NX02 genome, and the positive regulator SpnA of sphingans synthesis could not regulate sanxan production. Finally, we concluded that the evolution of the sanxan pathway was independent. NX02 evolved naturally as a polysaccharide producing strain over a long-time evolution involving gene acquisitions and adaptive mutations.

  2. Efficient transfer of two large secondary metabolite pathway gene clusters into heterologous hosts by transposition

    PubMed Central

    Fu, Jun; Wenzel, Silke C.; Perlova, Olena; Wang, Junping; Gross, Frank; Tang, Zhiru; Yin, Yulong; Stewart, A. Francis; Zhang, Youming

    2008-01-01

    Horizontal gene transfer by transposition has been widely used for transgenesis in prokaryotes. However, conjugation has been preferred for transfer of large transgenes, despite greater restrictions of host range. We examine the possibility that transposons can be used to deliver large transgenes to heterologous hosts. This possibility is particularly relevant to the expression of large secondary metabolite gene clusters in various heterologous hosts. Recently, we showed that the engineering of large gene clusters like type I polyketide/nonribosomal peptide pathways for heterologous expression is no longer a bottleneck. Here, we apply recombineering to engineer either the epothilone (epo) or myxochromide S (mchS) gene cluster for transpositional delivery and expression in heterologous hosts. The 58-kb epo gene cluster was fully reconstituted from two clones by stitching. Then, the epo promoter was exchanged for a promoter active in the heterologous host, followed by engineering into the MycoMar transposon. A similar process was applied to the mchS gene cluster. The engineered gene clusters were transferred and expressed in the heterologous hosts Myxococcus xanthus and Pseudomonas putida. We achieved the largest transposition yet reported for any system and suggest that delivery by transposon will become the method of choice for delivery of large transgenes, particularly not only for metabolic engineering but also for general transgenesis in prokaryotes and eukaryotes. PMID:18701643

  3. Queen pheromones modulate DNA methyltransferase activity in bee and ant workers

    PubMed Central

    Holman, Luke; Trontti, Kalevi; Helanterä, Heikki

    2016-01-01

    DNA methylation is emerging as an important regulator of polyphenism in the social insects. Research has concentrated on differences in methylation between queens and workers, though we hypothesized that methylation is involved in mediating other flexible phenotypes, including pheromone-dependent changes in worker behaviour and physiology. Here, we find that exposure to queen pheromone affects the expression of two DNA methyltransferase genes in Apis mellifera honeybees and in two species of Lasius ants, but not in Bombus terrestris bumblebees. These results suggest that queen pheromones influence the worker methylome, pointing to a novel proximate mechanism for these key social signals. PMID:26814223

  4. Queen pheromones modulate DNA methyltransferase activity in bee and ant workers.

    PubMed

    Holman, Luke; Trontti, Kalevi; Helanterä, Heikki

    2016-01-01

    DNA methylation is emerging as an important regulator of polyphenism in the social insects. Research has concentrated on differences in methylation between queens and workers, though we hypothesized that methylation is involved in mediating other flexible phenotypes, including pheromone-dependent changes in worker behaviour and physiology. Here, we find that exposure to queen pheromone affects the expression of two DNA methyltransferase genes in Apis mellifera honeybees and in two species of Lasius ants, but not in Bombus terrestris bumblebees. These results suggest that queen pheromones influence the worker methylome, pointing to a novel proximate mechanism for these key social signals. © 2016 The Author(s).

  5. Identification of Nocobactin NA Biosynthetic Gene Clusters in Nocardia farcinica▿ §

    PubMed Central

    Hoshino, Yasutaka; Chiba, Kazuhiro; Ishino, Keiko; Fukai, Toshio; Igarashi, Yasuhiro; Yazawa, Katsukiyo; Mikami, Yuzuru; Ishikawa, Jun

    2011-01-01

    We identified the biosynthetic gene clusters of the siderophore nocobactin NA. The nbt clusters, which were discovered as genes highly homologous to the mycobactin biosynthesis genes by the genomic sequencing of Nocardia farcinica IFM 10152, consist of 10 genes separately located at two genomic regions. The gene organization of the nbt clusters and the predicted functions of the nbt genes, particularly the cyclization and epimerization domains, were in good agreement with the chemical structure of nocobactin NA. Disruptions of the nbtA and nbtE genes, respectively, reduced and abolished the productivity of nocobactin NA. The heterologous expression of the nbtS gene revealed that this gene encoded a salicylate synthase. These results indicate that the nbt clusters are responsible for the biosynthesis of nocobactin NA. We also found putative IdeR-binding sequences upstream of the nbtA, -G, -H, -S, and -T genes, whose expression was more than 10-fold higher in the low-iron condition than in the high-iron condition. These results suggest that nbt genes are regulated coordinately by IdeR protein in an iron-dependent manner. The ΔnbtE mutant was found to be impaired in cytotoxicity against J774A.1 cells, suggesting that nocobactin NA production is required for virulence of N. farcinica. PMID:21097631

  6. Characterization of the fumonisin B2 biosynthetic gene cluster in Aspergillus niger and A. awamori.

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Aspergillus niger and A. awamori strains isolated from grapes cultivated in Mediterranean basin were examined for fumonisin B2 (FB2) production and presence/absence of sequences within the fumonisin biosynthetic gene (fum) cluster. Presence of 13 regions in the fum cluster was evaluated by PCR assay...

  7. Comparative genomic analysis of secondary metabolite biosynthetic gene clusters in 207 isolates of Fusarium

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Fusarium species are known for their ability to produce secondary metabolites (SMs), including plant hormones, pigments, mycotoxins, and other compounds with potential agricultural, pharmaceutical, and biotechnological impact. Understanding the distribution of SM biosynthetic gene clusters across th...

  8. Clusters of antibiotic resistance genes enriched together stay together in swine agriculture

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, Timothy A.; Stedtfeld, Robert D.; Wang, Qiong; Cole, James R.; Hashsham, Syed A.; Looft, Torey; Zhu, Yong -Guan; Tiedje, James M.

    2016-04-12

    Antibiotic resistance is a worldwide health risk, but the influence of animal agriculture on the genetic context and enrichment of individual antibiotic resistance alleles remains unclear. Using quantitative PCR followed by amplicon sequencing, we quantified and sequenced 44 genes related to antibiotic resistance, mobile genetic elements, and bacterial phylogeny in microbiomes from U.S. laboratory swine and from swine farms from three Chinese regions. We identified highly abundant resistance clusters: groups of resistance and mobile genetic element alleles that cooccur. For example, the abundance of genes conferring resistance to six classes of antibiotics together with class 1 integrase and the abundance of IS6100-type transposons in three Chinese regions are directly correlated. These resistance cluster genes likely colocalize in microbial genomes in the farms. Resistance cluster alleles were dramatically enriched (up to 1 to 10% as abundant as 16S rRNA) and indicate that multidrug-resistant bacteria are likely the norm rather than an exception in these communities. This enrichment largely occurred independently of phylogenetic composition; thus, resistance clusters are likely present in many bacterial taxa. Furthermore, resistance clusters contain resistance genes that confer resistance to antibiotics independently of their particular use on the farms. Selection for these clusters is likely due to the use of only a subset of the broad range of chemicals to which the clusters confer resistance. The scale of animal agriculture and its wastes, the enrichment and horizontal gene transfer potential of the clusters, and the vicinity of large human populations suggest that managing this resistance reservoir is important for minimizing human risk.Agricultural antibiotic use results in clusters of cooccurring resistance genes that together confer resistance to multiple antibiotics. The use of a single antibiotic could select for an entire suite of

  9. Clusters of antibiotic resistance genes enriched together stay together in swine agriculture

    DOE PAGES

    Johnson, Timothy A.; Stedtfeld, Robert D.; Wang, Qiong; ...

    2016-04-12

    Antibiotic resistance is a worldwide health risk, but the influence of animal agriculture on the genetic context and enrichment of individual antibiotic resistance alleles remains unclear. Using quantitative PCR followed by amplicon sequencing, we quantified and sequenced 44 genes related to antibiotic resistance, mobile genetic elements, and bacterial phylogeny in microbiomes from U.S. laboratory swine and from swine farms from three Chinese regions. We identified highly abundant resistance clusters: groups of resistance and mobile genetic element alleles that cooccur. For example, the abundance of genes conferring resistance to six classes of antibiotics together with class 1 integrase and the abundancemore » of IS6100-type transposons in three Chinese regions are directly correlated. These resistance cluster genes likely colocalize in microbial genomes in the farms. Resistance cluster alleles were dramatically enriched (up to 1 to 10% as abundant as 16S rRNA) and indicate that multidrug-resistant bacteria are likely the norm rather than an exception in these communities. This enrichment largely occurred independently of phylogenetic composition; thus, resistance clusters are likely present in many bacterial taxa. Furthermore, resistance clusters contain resistance genes that confer resistance to antibiotics independently of their particular use on the farms. Selection for these clusters is likely due to the use of only a subset of the broad range of chemicals to which the clusters confer resistance. The scale of animal agriculture and its wastes, the enrichment and horizontal gene transfer potential of the clusters, and the vicinity of large human populations suggest that managing this resistance reservoir is important for minimizing human risk.Agricultural antibiotic use results in clusters of cooccurring resistance genes that together confer resistance to multiple antibiotics. The use of a single antibiotic could select for an entire suite of resistance

  10. Clusters of Antibiotic Resistance Genes Enriched Together Stay Together in Swine Agriculture.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Timothy A; Stedtfeld, Robert D; Wang, Qiong; Cole, James R; Hashsham, Syed A; Looft, Torey; Zhu, Yong-Guan; Tiedje, James M

    2016-04-12

    Antibiotic resistance is a worldwide health risk, but the influence of animal agriculture on the genetic context and enrichment of individual antibiotic resistance alleles remains unclear. Using quantitative PCR followed by amplicon sequencing, we quantified and sequenced 44 genes related to antibiotic resistance, mobile genetic elements, and bacterial phylogeny in microbiomes from U.S. laboratory swine and from swine farms from three Chinese regions. We identified highly abundant resistance clusters: groups of resistance and mobile genetic element alleles that cooccur. For example, the abundance of genes conferring resistance to six classes of antibiotics together with class 1 integrase and the abundance of IS6100-type transposons in three Chinese regions are directly correlated. These resistance cluster genes likely colocalize in microbial genomes in the farms. Resistance cluster alleles were dramatically enriched (up to 1 to 10% as abundant as 16S rRNA) and indicate that multidrug-resistant bacteria are likely the norm rather than an exception in these communities. This enrichment largely occurred independently of phylogenetic composition; thus, resistance clusters are likely present in many bacterial taxa. Furthermore, resistance clusters contain resistance genes that confer resistance to antibiotics independently of their particular use on the farms. Selection for these clusters is likely due to the use of only a subset of the broad range of chemicals to which the clusters confer resistance. The scale of animal agriculture and its wastes, the enrichment and horizontal gene transfer potential of the clusters, and the vicinity of large human populations suggest that managing this resistance reservoir is important for minimizing human risk. Agricultural antibiotic use results in clusters of cooccurring resistance genes that together confer resistance to multiple antibiotics. The use of a single antibiotic could select for an entire suite of resistance genes if

  11. Integrating Data Clustering and Visualization for the Analysis of 3D Gene Expression Data

    SciTech Connect

    Data Analysis and Visualization and the Department of Computer Science, University of California, Davis, One Shields Avenue, Davis CA 95616, USA,; nternational Research Training Group ``Visualization of Large and Unstructured Data Sets,'' University of Kaiserslautern, Germany; Computational Research Division, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, One Cyclotron Road, Berkeley, CA 94720, USA; Genomics Division, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, One Cyclotron Road, Berkeley CA 94720, USA; Life Sciences Division, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, One Cyclotron Road, Berkeley CA 94720, USA,; Computer Science Division,University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA,; Computer Science Department, University of California, Irvine, CA, USA,; All authors are with the Berkeley Drosophila Transcription Network Project, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory,; Rubel, Oliver; Weber, Gunther H.; Huang, Min-Yu; Bethel, E. Wes; Biggin, Mark D.; Fowlkes, Charless C.; Hendriks, Cris L. Luengo; Keranen, Soile V. E.; Eisen, Michael B.; Knowles, David W.; Malik, Jitendra; Hagen, Hans; Hamann, Bernd

    2008-05-12

    The recent development of methods for extracting precise measurements of spatial gene expression patterns from three-dimensional (3D) image data opens the way for new analyses of the complex gene regulatory networks controlling animal development. We present an integrated visualization and analysis framework that supports user-guided data clustering to aid exploration of these new complex datasets. The interplay of data visualization and clustering-based data classification leads to improved visualization and enables a more detailed analysis than previously possible. We discuss (i) integration of data clustering and visualization into one framework; (ii) application of data clustering to 3D gene expression data; (iii) evaluation of the number of clusters k in the context of 3D gene expression clustering; and (iv) improvement of overall analysis quality via dedicated post-processing of clustering results based on visualization. We discuss the use of this framework to objectively define spatial pattern boundaries and temporal profiles of genes and to analyze how mRNA patterns are controlled by their regulatory transcription factors.

  12. Chordate Hox and ParaHox gene clusters differ dramatically in their repetitive element content.

    PubMed

    Osborne, Peter W; Ferrier, David E K

    2010-02-01

    The ParaHox and Hox gene clusters control aspects of animal anterior-posterior development and are related as paralogous evolutionary sisters. Despite this relationship, it is not clear if the clusters operate in similar ways, with similar constraints. To compare clusters, we examined the transposable-element (TE) content of amphioxus and mammalian ParaHox and Hox clusters. Chordate Hox clusters are known to be largely devoid of TEs, possibly due to gene regulation and constraints on clustering in these animals. Here, we describe several novel amphioxus TEs and show that the amphioxus ParaHox cluster is a hotspot for TE insertion. TE contents of mammalian ParaHox loci are at background levels, in stark contrast to chordate Hox clusters. This marks a significant difference between Hox and ParaHox clusters. The presence of so many potentially disruptive elements implies selection constrains these ParaHox clusters as they have not dispersed despite 500 My of evolution for each lineage.

  13. Peripheral modulation of worker bee responses to queen mandibular pheromone.

    PubMed

    Vergoz, Vanina; McQuillan, H James; Geddes, Lisa H; Pullar, Kiri; Nicholson, Brad J; Paulin, Michael G; Mercer, Alison R

    2009-12-08

    It is generally accepted that young worker bees (Apis mellifera L.) are highly attracted to queen mandibular pheromone (QMP). Our results challenge this widely held view. We have found that unless young workers are exposed to QMP early in adult life, they, like foragers, avoid contact with this pheromone. Our data indicate that responses to QMP are regulated peripherally, at the level of the antennal sensory neurons, and that a window of opportunity exists in which QMP can alter a young bee's response to this critically important pheromone. Exposing young bees to QMP from the time of adult emergence reduces expression in the antennae of the D1-like dopamine receptor gene, Amdop1. Levels of Amdop3 transcript, on the other hand, and of the octopamine receptor gene Amoa1, are significantly higher in the antennae of bees strongly attracted to QMP than in bees showing no attraction to this pheromone. A decline in QMP attraction with age is accompanied by a fall in expression in worker antennae of the D2-like dopamine receptor, AmDOP3, a receptor that is selectively activated by QMP. Taken together, our findings suggest that QMP's actions peripherally not only suppress avoidance behavior, but also enhance attraction to QMP, thereby facilitating attendance of the queen.

  14. Visualization of mappings between the gene ontology and cluster trees

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jusufi, Ilir; Kerren, Andreas; Aleksakhin, Vladyslav; Schreiber, Falk

    2012-01-01

    Ontologies and hierarchical clustering are both important tools in biology and medicine to study high-throughput data such as transcriptomics and metabolomics data. Enrichment of ontology terms in the data is used to identify statistically overrepresented ontology terms, giving insight into relevant biological processes or functional modules. Hierarchical clustering is a standard method to analyze and visualize data to find relatively homogeneous clusters of experimental data points. Both methods support the analysis of the same data set, but are usually considered independently. However, often a combined view is desired: visualizing a large data set in the context of an ontology under consideration of a clustering of the data. This paper proposes a new visualization method for this task.

  15. Regulation of transcription of cell division genes in the Escherichia coli dcw cluster.

    PubMed

    Vicente, M; Gomez, M J; Ayala, J A

    1998-04-01

    The Escherichia coli dcw cluster contains cell division genes, such as the phylogenetically ubiquitous ftsZ, and genes involved in peptidoglycan synthesis. Transcription in the cluster proceeds in the same direction as the progress of the replication fork along the chromosome. Regulation is exerted at the transcriptional and post-transcriptional levels. The absence of transcriptional termination signals may, in principle, allow extension of the transcripts initiated at the up-stream promoter (mraZ1p) even to the furthest down-stream gene (envA). Complementation tests suggest that they extend into ftsW in the central part of the cluster. In addition, the cluster contains other promoters individually regulated by cis- and trans-acting signals. Dissociation of the expression of the ftsZ gene, located after ftsQ and A near the 3' end of the cluster, from its natural regulatory signals leads to an alteration in the physiology of cell division. The complexities observed in the regulation of gene expression in the cluster may then have an important biological role. Among them, LexA-binding SOS boxes have been found at the 5' end of the cluster, preceding promoters which direct the expression of ftsI (coding for PBP3, the penicillin-binding protein involved in septum formation). A gearbox promoter, ftsQ1p, forms part of the signals regulating the transcription of ftsQ, A and Z. It is an inversely growth-dependent mechanism driven by RNA polymerase containing sigma s, the factor involved in the expression of stationary phase-specific genes. Although the dcw cluster is conserved to a different extent in a variety of bacteria, the regulation of gene expression, the presence or absence of individual genes, and even the essentiality of some of them, show variations in the phylogenetic scale which may reflect adaptation to specific life cycles.

  16. Methods for evaluating clustering algorithms for gene expression data using a reference set of functional classes.

    PubMed

    Datta, Susmita; Datta, Somnath

    2006-08-31

    A cluster analysis is the most commonly performed procedure (often regarded as a first step) on a set of gene expression profiles. In most cases, a post hoc analysis is done to see if the genes in the same clusters can be functionally correlated. While past successes of such analyses have often been reported in a number of microarray studies (most of which used the standard hierarchical clustering, UPGMA, with one minus the Pearson's correlation coefficient as a measure of dissimilarity), often times such groupings could be misleading. More importantly, a systematic evaluation of the entire set of clusters produced by such unsupervised procedures is necessary since they also contain genes that are seemingly unrelated or may have more than one common function. Here we quantify the performance of a given unsupervised clustering algorithm applied to a given microarray study in terms of its ability to produce biologically meaningful clusters using a reference set of functional classes. Such a reference set may come from prior biological knowledge specific to a microarray study or may be formed using the growing databases of gene ontologies (GO) for the annotated genes of the relevant species. In this paper, we introduce two performance measures for evaluating the results of a clustering algorithm in its ability to produce biologically meaningful clusters. The first measure is a biological homogeneity index (BHI). As the name suggests, it is a measure of how biologically homogeneous the clusters are. This can be used to quantify the performance of a given clustering algorithm such as UPGMA in grouping genes for a particular data set and also for comparing the performance of a number of competing clustering algorithms applied to the same data set. The second performance measure is called a biological stability index (BSI). For a given clustering algorithm and an expression data set, it measures the consistency of the clustering algorithm's ability to produce biologically

  17. United we stand: big roles for small RNA gene clusters.

    PubMed

    Felden, Brice; Paillard, Luc

    2017-02-01

    Prokaryotes and eukaryotes evolved relatively similar RNA-based molecular mechanisms to fight potentially deleterious nucleic acids coming from phages, transposons, or viruses. Short RNAs guide effector complexes toward their targets to be silenced or eliminated. These short immunity RNAs are transcribed from clustered loci. Unexpectedly and strikingly, bacterial and eukaryotic immunity RNA clusters share substantial functional and mechanistic resemblances in fighting nucleic acid intruders.

  18. A stationary wavelet entropy-based clustering approach accurately predicts gene expression.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Nha; Vo, An; Choi, Inchan; Won, Kyoung-Jae

    2015-03-01

    Studying epigenetic landscapes is important to understand the condition for gene regulation. Clustering is a useful approach to study epigenetic landscapes by grouping genes based on their epigenetic conditions. However, classical clustering approaches that often use a representative value of the signals in a fixed-sized window do not fully use the information written in the epigenetic landscapes. Clustering approaches to maximize the information of the epigenetic signals are necessary for better understanding gene regulatory environments. For effective clustering of multidimensional epigenetic signals, we developed a method called Dewer, which uses the entropy of stationary wavelet of epigenetic signals inside enriched regions for gene clustering. Interestingly, the gene expression levels were highly correlated with the entropy levels of epigenetic signals. Dewer separates genes better than a window-based approach in the assessment using gene expression and achieved a correlation coefficient above 0.9 without using any training procedure. Our results show that the changes of the epigenetic signals are useful to study gene regulation.

  19. An ABC transporter is required for secretion of peptide sex pheromones in Enterococcus faecalis.

    PubMed

    Varahan, Sriram; Harms, Nathan; Gilmore, Michael S; Tomich, John M; Hancock, Lynn E

    2014-09-23

    Enterococci are leading causes of hospital-acquired infection in the United States and continue to develop resistances to new antibiotics. Many Enterococcus faecalis isolates harbor pheromone-responsive plasmids that mediate horizontal transfer of even large blocks of chromosomal genes, resulting in hospital-adapted strains over a quarter of whose genomes consist of mobile elements. Pheromones to which the donor cells respond derive from lipoprotein signal peptides. Using a novel bacterial killing assay dependent on the presence of sex pheromones, we screened a transposon mutant library for functions that relate to the production and/or activity of the effector pheromone. Here we describe a previously uncharacterized, but well-conserved, ABC transporter that contributes to pheromone production. Using three distinct pheromone-dependent mating systems, we show that mutants defective in expressing this transporter display a 5- to 6-order-of-magnitude reduction in conjugation efficiency. In addition, we demonstrate that the ABC transporter mutant displays an altered biofilm architecture, with a significant reduction in biofilm biomass compared to that of its isogenic parent, suggesting that pheromone activity also influences biofilm development. The conservation of this peptide transporter across the Firmicutes suggests that it may also play an important role in cell-cell communication in other species within this important phylum. Enterococcus faecalis ranks as one of the leading causes of hospital-associated infections. Strains possessing resistance to multiple antibiotics are becoming all too common in clinical settings. Pheromone-responsive plasmids play an important role in harboring and disseminating these antibiotic resistance genes. Here we have identified a novel ABC transporter that is responsible for the secretion of peptide pheromones, which enables communication between cells to mediate plasmid transfer. We have also shown that this transporter is

  20. Characterization of the ars gene cluster from extremely arsenic-resistant Microbacterium sp. strain A33.

    PubMed

    Achour-Rokbani, Asma; Cordi, Audrey; Poupin, Pascal; Bauda, Pascale; Billard, Patrick

    2010-02-01

    The arsenic resistance gene cluster of Microbacterium sp. A33 contains a novel pair of genes (arsTX) encoding a thioredoxin system that are cotranscribed with an unusual arsRC2 fusion gene, ACR3, and arsC1 in an operon divergent from arsC3. The whole ars gene cluster is required to complement an Escherichia coli ars mutant. ArsRC2 negatively regulates the expression of the pentacistronic operon. ArsC1 and ArsC3 are related to thioredoxin-dependent arsenate reductases; however, ArsC3 lacks the two distal catalytic cysteine residues of this class of enzymes.

  1. Identification of a 12-gene fusaric acid biosynthetic gene cluster in Fusarium species through comparative and functional genomics

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    In fungi, genes involved in biosynthesis of a secondary metabolite (SM) are often located adjacent to one another in the genome and are coordinately regulated. These SM biosynthetic gene clusters typically encode enzymes, one or more transcription factors, and a transport protein. Fusaric acid is a ...

  2. Yeast homologous recombination-based promoter engineering for the activation of silent natural product biosynthetic gene clusters.

    PubMed

    Montiel, Daniel; Kang, Hahk-Soo; Chang, Fang-Yuan; Charlop-Powers, Zachary; Brady, Sean F

    2015-07-21

    Large-scale sequencing of prokaryotic (meta)genomic DNA suggests that most bacterial natural product gene clusters are not expressed under common laboratory culture conditions. Silent gene clusters represent a promising resource for natural product discovery and the development of a new generation of therapeutics. Unfortunately, the characterization of molecules encoded by these clusters is hampered owing to our inability to express these gene clusters in the laboratory. To address this bottleneck, we have developed a promoter-engineering platform to transcriptionally activate silent gene clusters in a model heterologous host. Our approach uses yeast homologous recombination, an auxotrophy complementation-based yeast selection system and sequence orthogonal promoter cassettes to exchange all native promoters in silent gene clusters with constitutively active promoters. As part of this platform, we constructed and validated a set of bidirectional promoter cassettes consisting of orthogonal promoter sequences, Streptomyces ribosome binding sites, and yeast selectable marker genes. Using these tools we demonstrate the ability to simultaneously insert multiple promoter cassettes into a gene cluster, thereby expediting the reengineering process. We apply this method to model active and silent gene clusters (rebeccamycin and tetarimycin) and to the silent, cryptic pseudogene-containing, environmental DNA-derived Lzr gene cluster. Complete promoter refactoring and targeted gene exchange in this "dead" cluster led to the discovery of potent indolotryptoline antiproliferative agents, lazarimides A and B. This potentially scalable and cost-effective promoter reengineering platform should streamline the discovery of natural products from silent natural product biosynthetic gene clusters.

  3. Clustered brachiopod Hox genes are not expressed collinearly and are associated with lophotrochozoan novelties.

    PubMed

    Schiemann, Sabrina M; Martín-Durán, José M; Børve, Aina; Vellutini, Bruno C; Passamaneck, Yale J; Hejnol, Andreas

    2017-02-22

    Temporal collinearity is often considered the main force preserving Hox gene clusters in animal genomes. Studies that combine genomic and gene expression data are scarce, however, particularly in invertebrates like the Lophotrochozoa. As a result, the temporal collinearity hypothesis is currently built on poorly supported foundations. Here we characterize the complement, cluster, and expression of Hox genes in two brachiopod species, Terebratalia transversa and Novocrania anomalaT. transversa has a split cluster with 10 genes (lab, pb, Hox3, Dfd, Scr, Lox5, Antp, Lox4, Post2, and Post1), whereas N. anomala has 9 genes (apparently missing Post1). Our in situ hybridization, real-time quantitative PCR, and stage-specific transcriptomic analyses show that brachiopod Hox genes are neither strictly temporally nor spatially collinear; only pb (in T. transversa), Hox3 (in both brachiopods), and Dfd (in both brachiopods) show staggered mesodermal expression. Thus, our findings support the idea that temporal collinearity might contribute to keeping Hox genes clustered. Remarkably, expression of the Hox genes in both brachiopod species demonstrates cooption of Hox genes in the chaetae and shell fields, two major lophotrochozoan morphological novelties. The shared and specific expression of Hox genes, together with Arx, Zic, and Notch pathway components in chaetae and shell fields in brachiopods, mollusks, and annelids provide molecular evidence supporting the conservation of the molecular basis for these lophotrochozoan hallmarks.

  4. Unusual Gene Order and Organization of the Sea Urchin HoxCluster

    SciTech Connect

    Richardson, Paul M.; Lucas, Susan; Cameron, R. Andrew; Rowen,Lee; Nesbitt, Ryan; Bloom, Scott; Rast, Jonathan P.; Berney, Kevin; Arenas-Mena, Cesar; Martinez, Pedro; Davidson, Eric H.; Peterson, KevinJ.; Hood, Leroy

    2005-05-10

    The highly consistent gene order and axial colinear expression patterns found in vertebrate hox gene clusters are less well conserved across the rest of bilaterians. We report the first deuterostome instance of an intact hox cluster with a unique gene order where the paralog groups are not expressed in a sequential manner. The finished sequence from BAC clones from the genome of the sea urchin, Strongylocentrotus purpuratus, reveals a gene order wherein the anterior genes (Hox1, Hox2 and Hox3) lie nearest the posterior genes in the cluster such that the most 3' gene is Hox5. (The gene order is : 5'-Hox1,2, 3, 11/13c, 11/13b, '11/13a, 9/10, 8, 7, 6, 5 - 3)'. The finished sequence result is corroborated by restriction mapping evidence and BAC-end scaffold analyses. Comparisons with a putative ancestral deuterostome Hox gene cluster suggest that the rearrangements leading to the sea urchin gene order were many and complex.

  5. Unusual Gene Order and Organization of the Sea Urchin Hox Cluster

    SciTech Connect

    Cameron, R A; Rowen, L; Nesbitt, R; Bloom, S; Rast, J P; Berney, K; Arenas-Mena, C; Martinez, P; Lucas, S; Richardson, P M; Davidson, E H; Peterson, K J; Hood, L

    2005-10-11

    The highly consistent gene order and axial colinear expression patterns found in vertebrate hox gene clusters are less well conserved across the rest of bilaterians. We report the first deuterostome instance of an intact hox cluster with a unique gene order where the paralog groups are not expressed in a sequential manner. The finished sequence from BAC clones from the genome of the sea urchin, Strongylocentrotus purpuratus, reveals a gene order wherein the anterior genes (Hox1, Hox2 and Hox3) lie nearest the posterior genes in the cluster such that the most 3 gene is Hox5. (The gene order is : 5-Hox1, 2, 3, 11/13c, 11/13b, 11/13a, 9/10, 8, 7, 6, 5 - 3). The finished sequence result is corroborated by restriction mapping evidence and BAC-end scaffold analyses. Comparisons with a putative ancestral deuterostome Hox gene cluster suggest that the rearrangements leading to the sea urchin gene order were many and complex.

  6. Clustered brachiopod Hox genes are not expressed collinearly and are associated with lophotrochozoan novelties

    PubMed Central

    Schiemann, Sabrina M.; Martín-Durán, José M.; Børve, Aina; Passamaneck, Yale J.

    2017-01-01

    Temporal collinearity is often considered the main force preserving Hox gene clusters in animal genomes. Studies that combine genomic and gene expression data are scarce, however, particularly in invertebrates like the Lophotrochozoa. As a result, the temporal collinearity hypothesis is currently built on poorly supported foundations. Here we characterize the complement, cluster, and expression of Hox genes in two brachiopod species, Terebratalia transversa and Novocrania anomala. T. transversa has a split cluster with 10 genes (lab, pb, Hox3, Dfd, Scr, Lox5, Antp, Lox4, Post2, and Post1), whereas N. anomala has 9 genes (apparently missing Post1). Our in situ hybridization, real-time quantitative PCR, and stage-specific transcriptomic analyses show that brachiopod Hox genes are neither strictly temporally nor spatially collinear; only pb (in T. transversa), Hox3 (in both brachiopods), and Dfd (in both brachiopods) show staggered mesodermal expression. Thus, our findings support the idea that temporal collinearity might contribute to keeping Hox genes clustered. Remarkably, expression of the Hox genes in both brachiopod species demonstrates cooption of Hox genes in the chaetae and shell fields, two major lophotrochozoan morphological novelties. The shared and specific expression of Hox genes, together with Arx, Zic, and Notch pathway components in chaetae and shell fields in brachiopods, mollusks, and annelids provide molecular evidence supporting the conservation of the molecular basis for these lophotrochozoan hallmarks. PMID:28228521

  7. Spider pheromones - a structural perspective.

    PubMed

    Schulz, Stefan

    2013-01-01

    Spiders use pheromones for sexual communication, as do other animals such as insects. Nevertheless, knowledge about their chemical structure, function, and biosynthesis is only now being unraveled. Many studies have shown the existence of spider pheromones, but the responsible compounds have been elucidated in only a few cases. This review focuses on a structural approach because we need to know the involved chemistry if we are to understand fully the function of a pheromonal communication system. Pheromones from members of the spider families Pholcidae, Araneidae, Linyphiidae, Agenelidae, and Ctenidae are currently being identified and will be discussed in this review. Some of these compounds belong to compound classes not known from other arthropod pheromones, such as citric acid derivatives or acylated amino acids, whereas others originate from more common fatty acid metabolism. Their putative biosynthesis, their function, and the identification methods used will be discussed. Furthermore, other semiochemicals and the chemistry of apolar surface lipids that potentially might be used by spiders for communication are described briefly.

  8. The naphthalene catabolic (nag) genes of Polaromonas naphthalenivorans CJ2: Evolutionary implications for two gene clusters and novel regulatory control

    SciTech Connect

    Jeon, C.O.; Park, M.; Ro, H.S.; Park, W.; Madsen, E.L.

    2006-02-15

    Polaromonas naphthalenivorans CJ2, found to be responsible for the degradation of naphthalene in situ at a coal tar waste-contaminated site, is able to grow on mineral salts agar media with naphthalene as the sole carbon source. Beginning from a 484-bp nagAc-like region, we used a genome walking strategy to sequence genes encoding the entire naphthalene degradation pathway and additional flanking regions. We found that the naphthalene catabolic genes in P. naphthalenivorans CJ2 were divided into one large and one small gene cluster, separated by an unknown distance. The large gene cluster is bounded by a LysR-type regulator (nagR). The small cluster is bounded by a MarR-type regulator (nagR2). The catabolic genes of P. naphthalenivorans CJ2 were homologous to many of those of Ralstonia U2, which uses the gentisate pathway to convert naphthalene to central metabolites. However, three open reading frames (nagY, nagM, and nagN), present in Ralstonia U2, were absent. Also, P. naphthalenivorans carries two copies of gentisate dioxygenase (nagI) with 77.4% DNA sequence identity to one another and 82% amino acid identity to their homologue in Ralstonia sp. strain U2. Investigation of the operons using reverse transcription PCR showed that each cluster was controlled independently by its respective promoter. Insertional inactivation and lacZ reporter assays showed that nagR2 is a negative regulator and that expression of the small cluster is not induced by naphthalene, salicylate, or gentisate. Association of two putative Azoarcus-related transposases with the large cluster and one Azoarcus-related putative salicylate 5-hydroxylase gene (ORF2) in the small cluster suggests that mobile genetic elements were likely involved in creating the novel arrangement of catabolic and regulatory genes in P. naphthalenivorans.

  9. Sequencing rare marine actinomycete genomes reveals high density of unique natural product biosynthetic gene clusters.

    PubMed

    Schorn, Michelle A; Alanjary, Mohammad M; Aguinaldo, Kristen; Korobeynikov, Anton; Podell, Sheila; Patin, Nastassia; Lincecum, Tommie; Jensen, Paul R; Ziemert, Nadine; Moore, Bradley S

    2016-12-01

    Traditional natural product discovery methods have nearly exhausted the accessible diversity of microbial chemicals, making new sources and techniques paramount in the search for new molecules. Marine actinomycete bacteria have recently come into the spotlight as fruitful producers of structurally diverse secondary metabolites, and remain relatively untapped. In this study, we sequenced 21 marine-derived actinomycete strains, rarely studied for their secondary metabolite potential and under-represented in current genomic databases. We found that genome size and phylogeny were good predictors of biosynthetic gene cluster diversity, with larger genomes rivalling the well-known marine producers in the Streptomyces and Salinispora genera. Genomes in the Micrococcineae suborder, however, had consistently the lowest number of biosynthetic gene clusters. By networking individual gene clusters into gene cluster families, we were able to computationally estimate the degree of novelty each genus contributed to the current sequence databases. Based on the similarity measures between all actinobacteria in the Joint Genome Institute's Atlas of Biosynthetic gene Clusters database, rare marine genera show a high degree of novelty and diversity, with Corynebacterium, Gordonia, Nocardiopsis, Saccharomonospora and Pseudonocardia genera representing the highest gene cluster diversity. This research validates that rare marine actinomycetes are important candidates for exploration, as they are relatively unstudied, and their relatives are historically rich in secondary metabolites.

  10. Engineering Streptomyces coelicolor for heterologous expression of secondary metabolite gene clusters

    PubMed Central

    Gomez‐Escribano, Juan Pablo; Bibb, Mervyn J.

    2011-01-01

    Summary We have constructed derivatives of Streptomyces coelicolor M145 as hosts for the heterologous expression of secondary metabolite gene clusters. To remove potentially competitive sinks of carbon and nitrogen, and to provide a host devoid of antibiotic activity, we deleted four endogenous secondary metabolite gene clusters from S. coelicolor M145 – those for actinorhodin, prodiginine, CPK and CDA biosynthesis. We then introduced point mutations into rpoB and rpsL to pleiotropically increase the level of secondary metabolite production. Introduction of the native actinorhodin gene cluster and of gene clusters for the heterologous production of chloramphenicol and congocidine revealed dramatic increases in antibiotic production compared with the parental strain. In addition to lacking antibacterial activity, the engineered strains possess relatively simple extracellular metabolite profiles. When combined with liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry, we believe that these genetically engineered strains will markedly facilitate the discovery of new compounds by heterologous expression of cloned gene clusters, particularly the numerous cryptic secondary metabolic gene clusters that are prevalent within actinomycete genome sequences. PMID:21342466

  11. Comparative phylogenomic analyses of teleost fish Hox gene clusters: lessons from the cichlid fish Astatotilapia burtoni

    PubMed Central

    Hoegg, Simone; Boore, Jeffrey L; Kuehl, Jennifer V; Meyer, Axel

    2007-01-01

    Background Teleost fish have seven paralogous clusters of Hox genes stemming from two complete genome duplications early in vertebrate evolution, and an additional genome duplication during the evolution of ray-finned fish, followed by the secondary loss of one cluster. Gene duplications on the one hand, and the evolution of regulatory sequences on the other, are thought to be among the most important mechanisms for the evolution of new gene functions. Cichlid fish, the largest family of vertebrates with about 2500 species, are famous examples of speciation and morphological diversity. Since this diversity could be based on regulatory changes, we chose to study the coding as well as putative regulatory regions of their Hox clusters within a comparative genomic framework. Results We sequenced and characterized all seven Hox clusters of Astatotilapia burtoni, a haplochromine cichlid fish. Comparative analyses with data from other teleost fish such as zebrafish, two species of pufferfish, stickleback and medaka were performed. We traced losses of genes and microRNAs of Hox clusters, the medaka lineage seems to have lost more microRNAs than the other fish lineages. We found that each teleost genome studied so far has a unique set of Hox genes. The hoxb7a gene was lost independently several times during teleost evolution, the most recent event being within the radiation of East African cichlid fish. The conserved non-coding sequences (CNS) encompass a surprisingly large part of the clusters, especially in the HoxAa, HoxCa, and HoxDa clusters. Across all clusters, we observe a trend towards an increased content of CNS towards the anterior end. Conclusion The gene content of Hox clusters in teleost fishes is more variable than expected, with each species studied so far having a different set. Although the highest loss rate of Hox genes occurred immediately after whole genome duplications, our analyses showed that gene loss continued and is still ongoing in all teleost

  12. Lampreys, the jawless vertebrates, contain only two ParaHox gene clusters.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Huixian; Ravi, Vydianathan; Tay, Boon-Hui; Tohari, Sumanty; Pillai, Nisha E; Prasad, Aravind; Lin, Qiang; Brenner, Sydney; Venkatesh, Byrappa

    2017-08-22

    ParaHox genes (Gsx, Pdx, and Cdx) are an ancient family of developmental genes closely related to the Hox genes. They play critical roles in the patterning of brain and gut. The basal chordate, amphioxus, contains a single ParaHox cluster comprising one member of each family, whereas nonteleost jawed vertebrates contain four ParaHox genomic loci with six or seven ParaHox genes. Teleosts, which have experienced an additional whole-genome duplication, contain six ParaHox genomic loci with six ParaHox genes. Jawless vertebrates, represented by lampreys and hagfish, are the most ancient group of vertebrates and are crucial for understanding the origin and evolution of vertebrate gene families. We have previously shown that lampreys contain six Hox gene loci. Here we report that lampreys contain only two ParaHox gene clusters (designated as α- and β-clusters) bearing five ParaHox genes (Gsxα, Pdxα, Cdxα, Gsxβ, and Cdxβ). The order and orientation of the three genes in the α-cluster are identical to that of the single cluster in amphioxus. However, the orientation of Gsxβ in the β-cluster is inverted. Interestingly, Gsxβ is expressed in the eye, unlike its homologs in jawed vertebrates, which are expressed mainly in the brain. The lamprey Pdxα is expressed in the pancreas similar to jawed vertebrate Pdx genes, indicating that the pancreatic expression of Pdx was acquired before the divergence of jawless and jawed vertebrate lineages. It is likely that the lamprey Pdxα plays a crucial role in pancreas specification and insulin production similar to the Pdx of jawed vertebrates.

  13. Cytokine Gene Polymorphisms Associated With Symptom Clusters in Oncology Patients Undergoing Radiation Therapy.

    PubMed

    Miaskowski, Christine; Conley, Yvette P; Mastick, Judy; Paul, Steven M; Cooper, Bruce A; Levine, Jon D; Knisely, Mitchell; Kober, Kord M

    2017-09-01

    Most of the reviews on the biological basis for symptom clusters suggest that inflammatory processes are involved in the development and maintenance of the symptom clusters. However, no studies have evaluated for associations between genetic polymorphisms and common symptom clusters (e.g., mood disturbance, sickness behavior). Examine the associations between cytokine gene polymorphisms and the severity of three distinct symptom clusters (i.e., mood-cognitive, sickness-behavior, treatment-related) in a sample of patients with breast and prostate cancer (n = 157) at the completion of radiation therapy. Symptom severity was assessed using the Memorial Symptom Assessment Scale. Symptom clusters were created using exploratory factor analysis. The associations between cytokine gene polymorphisms and the symptom cluster severity scores were evaluated using regression analyses. Polymorphisms in C-X-C motif chemokine ligand 8 (CXCL8), interleukin (IL13), and nuclear factor kappa beta 2 (NFKB2) were associated with severity scores for the mood-cognitive symptom cluster. In addition to interferon gamma (IFNG1), the same polymorphism in NFKB2 (i.e., rs1056890) that was associated with the mood-cognitive symptom cluster score was associated with the sickness-behavior symptom cluster. Polymorphisms in interleukin 1 receptor 1 (IL1R1), IL6, and NFKB1 were associated with severity factor scores for the treatment-related symptom cluster. Our findings support the hypotheses that symptoms that cluster together have a common underlying mechanism and the most common symptom clusters in oncology patients are associated polymorphisms in genes involved in a variety of inflammatory processes. Copyright © 2017 American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Contribution of oenocytes and pheromones to courtship behaviour in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Wicker-Thomas, Claude; Guenachi, Ilhem; Keita, Youssouf F

    2009-01-01

    Background In Drosophila, cuticular sex pheromones are long-chain unsaturated hydrocarbons synthesized from fatty acid precursors in epidermal cells called oenocytes. The species D. melanogaster shows sex pheromone dimorphism, with high levels of monoenes in males, and of dienes in females. Some biosynthesis enzymes are expressed both in fat body and oenocytes, rendering it difficult to estimate the exact role of oenocytes and of the transport of fatty acids from fat body to oenocytes in pheromone elaboration. To address this question, we RNAi silenced two main genes of the biosynthesis pathway, desat1 and desatF, in the oenocytes of D. melanogaster, without modifying their fat body expression. Results Inactivation of desat1 in oenocytes resulted in a 96% and 78% decrease in unsaturated hydrocarbons in males and females, respectively. Female pheromones (dienes) showed a decrease of 90%. Inactivation of desatF, which is female-specific and responsible for diene formation, resulted in a dramatic loss of pheromones (-98%) paralleled with a two-fold increase in monoenes. Courtship parameters (especially courtship latency) from wild-type males were more affected by desat1 knocked-down females (courtship latency increased by four fold) than by desatF knocked-down ones (+65% of courtship latency). The number of transcripts in oenocytes was estimated at 0.32 and 0.49 attomole/μg for desat1 in males and females, respectively, about half of the total transcripts in a fly. There were only 0.06 attomole/μg desatF transcripts in females, all located in the oenocytes. Conclusion Knock-down results for desat1 suggest that there must be very little transport of unsaturated precursors from fat body to the oenocytes, so pheromone synthesis occurs almost entirely through the action of biosynthesis enzymes within the oenocytes. Courtship experiments allow us to discuss the behavioral role of diene pheromones, which, under special conditions, could be replaced by monoenes in D

  15. Contribution of oenocytes and pheromones to courtship behaviour in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Wicker-Thomas, Claude; Guenachi, Ilhem; Keita, Youssouf F

    2009-08-11

    In Drosophila, cuticular sex pheromones are long-chain unsaturated hydrocarbons synthesized from fatty acid precursors in epidermal cells called oenocytes. The species D. melanogaster shows sex pheromone dimorphism, with high levels of monoenes in males, and of dienes in females. Some biosynthesis enzymes are expressed both in fat body and oenocytes, rendering it difficult to estimate the exact role of oenocytes and of the transport of fatty acids from fat body to oenocytes in pheromone elaboration. To address this question, we RNAi silenced two main genes of the biosynthesis pathway, desat1 and desatF, in the oenocytes of D. melanogaster, without modifying their fat body expression. Inactivation of desat1 in oenocytes resulted in a 96% and 78% decrease in unsaturated hydrocarbons in males and females, respectively. Female pheromones (dienes) showed a decrease of 90%. Inactivation of desatF, which is female-specific and responsible for diene formation, resulted in a dramatic loss of pheromones (-98%) paralleled with a two-fold increase in monoenes. Courtship parameters (especially courtship latency) from wild-type males were more affected by desat1 knocked-down females (courtship latency increased by four fold) than by desatF knocked-down ones (+65% of courtship latency).The number of transcripts in oenocytes was estimated at 0.32 and 0.49 attomole/microg for desat1 in males and females, respectively, about half of the total transcripts in a fly. There were only 0.06 attomole/microg desatF transcripts in females, all located in the oenocytes. Knock-down results for desat1 suggest that there must be very little transport of unsaturated precursors from fat body to the oenocytes, so pheromone synthesis occurs almost entirely through the action of biosynthesis enzymes within the oenocytes. Courtship experiments allow us to discuss the behavioral role of diene pheromones, which, under special conditions, could be replaced by monoenes in D. melanogaster. A possible

  16. Orthologous Gene Clusters and Taxon Signature Genes for Viruses of Prokaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Kristensen, David M.; Waller, Alison S.; Yamada, Takuji; Bork, Peer; Mushegian, Arcady R.

    2013-01-01

    Viruses are the most abundant biological entities on earth and encompass a vast amount of genetic diversity. The recent rapid increase in the number of sequenced viral genomes has created unprecedented opportunities for gaining new insight into the structure and evolution of the virosphere. Here, we present an update of the phage orthologous groups (POGs), a collection of 4,542 clusters of orthologous genes from bacteriophages that now also includes viruses infecting archaea and encompasses more than 1,000 distinct virus genomes. Analysis of this expanded data set shows that the number of POGs keeps growing without saturation and that a substantial majority of the POGs remain specific to viruses, lacking homologues in prokaryotic cells, outside known proviruses. Thus, the great majority of virus genes apparently remains to be discovered. A complementary observation is that numerous viral genomes remain poorly, if at all, covered by POGs. The genome coverage by POGs is expected to increase as more genomes are sequenced. Taxon-specific, single-copy signature genes that are not observed in prokaryotic genomes outside detected proviruses were identified for two-thirds of the 57 taxa (those with genomes available from at least 3 distinct viruses), with half of these present in all members of the respective taxon. These signatures can be used to specifically identify the presence and quantify the abundance of viruses from particular taxa in metagenomic samples and thus gain new insights into the ecology and evolution of viruses in relation to their hosts. PMID:23222723

  17. Evidence for directional selection acting on pheromone-binding proteins in the genus Choristoneura.

    PubMed

    Willett, C S

    2000-04-01

    Patterns of nucleotide variation consistent with the action of natural selection have been discovered at a number of different gene loci. Here, pheromone-binding proteins (PBPs) are examined to determine if selection has acted to fix amino acid changes in PBPs in lineages in which pheromone changes have occurred. PBPs from five different species of moths in the genus Choristoneura were sequenced, along with the PBP of Argyrotaenia velutinana, which serves as an outgroup. Three independent major pheromone changes are represented within this group of five Choristoneura species. Two different lineages show evidence for selection based on polymorphism and divergence comparisons and comparisons of rates of replacement evolution to silent and noncoding evolution. Along one of these lineages, leading to Choristoneura fumiferana, there has been a change to an aldehyde pheromone from an acetate pheromone. The second branch does not appear to be associated with a major pheromone change. Other branches in the tree show a trend toward greater replacement fixation than expected under neutrality. This trend could reflect undetected selective events within this group of PBPs. Selection appears to have acted to fix amino acid changes in the PBP of moths from the genus Choristoneura, but it is not clear that this selection is due to pheromone changes between species.

  18. A Forward Genetic Screen for Molecules Involved in Pheromone-Induced Dauer Formation in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Neal, Scott J; Park, JiSoo; DiTirro, Danielle; Yoon, Jason; Shibuya, Mayumi; Choi, Woochan; Schroeder, Frank C; Butcher, Rebecca A; Kim, Kyuhyung; Sengupta, Piali

    2016-05-03

    Animals must constantly assess their surroundings and integrate sensory cues to make appropriate behavioral and developmental decisions. Pheromones produced by conspecific individuals provide critical information regarding environmental conditions. Ascaroside pheromone concentration and composition are instructive in the decision of Caenorhabditis elegans to either develop into a reproductive adult or enter into the stress-resistant alternate dauer developmental stage. Pheromones are sensed by a small set of sensory neurons, and integrated with additional environmental cues, to regulate neuroendocrine signaling and dauer formation. To identify molecules required for pheromone-induced dauer formation, we performed an unbiased forward genetic screen and identified phd (pheromone response-defective dauer) mutants. Here, we describe new roles in dauer formation for previously identified neuronal molecules such as the WD40 domain protein QUI-1 and MACO-1 Macoilin, report new roles for nociceptive neurons in modulating pheromone-induced dauer formation, and identify tau tubulin kinases as new genes involved in dauer formation. Thus, phd mutants define loci required for the detection, transmission, or integration of pheromone signals in the regulation of dauer formation.

  19. A Forward Genetic Screen for Molecules Involved in Pheromone-Induced Dauer Formation in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Neal, Scott J.; Park, JiSoo; DiTirro, Danielle; Yoon, Jason; Shibuya, Mayumi; Choi, Woochan; Schroeder, Frank C.; Butcher, Rebecca A.; Kim, Kyuhyung; Sengupta, Piali

    2016-01-01

    Animals must constantly assess their surroundings and integrate sensory cues to make appropriate behavioral and developmental decisions. Pheromones produced by conspecific individuals provide critical information regarding environmental conditions. Ascaroside pheromone concentration and composition are instructive in the decision of Caenorhabditis elegans to either develop into a reproductive adult or enter into the stress-resistant alternate dauer developmental stage. Pheromones are sensed by a small set of sensory neurons, and integrated with additional environmental cues, to regulate neuroendocrine signaling and dauer formation. To identify molecules required for pheromone-induced dauer formation, we performed an unbiased forward genetic screen and identified phd (pheromone response-defective dauer) mutants. Here, we describe new roles in dauer formation for previously identified neuronal molecules such as the WD40 domain protein QUI-1 and MACO-1 Macoilin, report new roles for nociceptive neurons in modulating pheromone-induced dauer formation, and identify tau tubulin kinases as new genes involved in dauer formation. Thus, phd mutants define loci required for the detection, transmission, or integration of pheromone signals in the regulation of dauer formation. PMID:26976437

  20. Fungal lipopeptide mating pheromones: a model system for the study of protein prenylation.

    PubMed Central

    Caldwell, G A; Naider, F; Becker, J M

    1995-01-01

    In a variety of fungal species, mating between haploid cells is initiated by the action of peptide pheromones. The identification and characterization of several fungal pheromones has revealed that they have common structural features classifying them as lipopeptides. In the course of biosynthesis, these pheromones undergo a series of posttranslational processing events prior to export. One common modification is the attachment of an isoprenoid group to the C terminus of the pheromone precursor. Genetic and biochemical investigations of this biosynthetic pathway have led to the elucidation of genes and enzymes which are responsible for isoprenylation of other polypeptides including the nuclear lamins, several vesicular transport proteins, and the oncogene product Ras. The alpha-factor of Saccharomyces cerevisiae serves as a model for studying the biosynthesis, export, and bioactivity of lipopeptide pheromones. In addition to being isoprenylated with a farnesyl group, the alpha-factor is secreted by a novel peptide export pathway utilizing a yeast homolog of the mammalian multidrug resistance P-glycoprotein. The identification of putative lipopeptide-encoding loci within other fungi, including the human immunodeficiency virus-associated opportunistic pathogen Cryptococcus neoformans and the plant pathogen Ustilago maydis, has stimulated much interest in understanding possible roles for pheromones in fungal proliferation and pathogenicity. Knowledge of variations within the processing, export, and receptor-mediated signal transduction pathways associated with different fungal lipopeptide pheromones will continue to provide insights into similar mechanisms which exist in higher eukaryotes. PMID:7565412

  1. An ABC Transporter Is Required for Secretion of Peptide Sex Pheromones in Enterococcus faecalis

    PubMed Central

    Varahan, Sriram; Harms, Nathan; Gilmore, Michael S.; Tomich, John M.

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT Enterococci are leading causes of hospital-acquired infection in the United States and continue to develop resistances to new antibiotics. Many Enterococcus faecalis isolates harbor pheromone-responsive plasmids that mediate horizontal transfer of even large blocks of chromosomal genes, resulting in hospital-adapted strains over a quarter of whose genomes consist of mobile elements. Pheromones to which the donor cells respond derive from lipoprotein signal peptides. Using a novel bacterial killing assay dependent on the presence of sex pheromones, we screened a transposon mutant library for functions that relate to the production and/or activity of the effector pheromone. Here we describe a previously uncharacterized, but well-conserved, ABC transporter that contributes to pheromone production. Using three distinct pheromone-dependent mating systems, we show that mutants defective in expressing this transporter display a 5- to 6-order-of-magnitude reduction in conjugation efficiency. In addition, we demonstrate that the ABC transporter mutant displays an altered biofilm architecture, with a significant reduction in biofilm biomass compared to that of its isogenic parent, suggesting that pheromone activity also influences biofilm development. The conservation of this peptide transporter across the Firmicutes suggests that it may also play an important role in cell-cell communication in other species within this important phylum. PMID:25249282

  2. Two Horizontally Transferred Xenobiotic Resistance Gene Clusters Associated with Detoxification of Benzoxazolinones by Fusarium Species

    PubMed Central

    Glenn, Anthony E.; Davis, C. Britton; Gao, Minglu; Gold, Scott E.; Mitchell, Trevor R.; Proctor, Robert H.; Stewart, Jane E.; Snook, Maurice E.

    2016-01-01

    Microbes encounter a broad spectrum of antimicrobial compounds in their environments and often possess metabolic strategies to detoxify such xenobiotics. We have previously shown that Fusarium verticillioides, a fungal pathogen of maize known for its production of fumonisin mycotoxins, possesses two unlinked loci, FDB1 and FDB2, necessary for detoxification of antimicrobial compounds produced by maize, including the γ-lactam 2-benzoxazolinone (BOA). In support of these earlier studies, microarray analysis of F. verticillioides exposed to BOA identified the induction of multiple genes at FDB1 and FDB2, indicating the loci consist of gene clusters. One of the FDB1 cluster genes encoded a protein having domain homology to the metallo-β-lactamase (MBL) superfamily. Deletion of this gene (MBL1) rendered F. verticillioides incapable of metabolizing BOA and thus unable to grow on BOA-amended media. Deletion of other FDB1 cluster genes, in particular AMD1 and DLH1, did not affect BOA degradation. Phylogenetic analyses and topology testing of the FDB1 and FDB2 cluster genes suggested two horizontal transfer events among fungi, one being transfer of FDB1 from Fusarium to Colletotrichum, and the second being transfer of the FDB2 cluster from Fusarium to Aspergillus. Together, the results suggest that plant-derived xenobiotics have exerted evolutionary pressure on these fungi, leading to horizontal transfer of genes that enhance fitness or virulence. PMID:26808652

  3. Two Horizontally Transferred Xenobiotic Resistance Gene Clusters Associated with Detoxification of Benzoxazolinones by Fusarium Species.

    PubMed

    Glenn, Anthony E; Davis, C Britton; Gao, Minglu; Gold, Scott E; Mitchell, Trevor R; Proctor, Robert H; Stewart, Jane E; Snook, Maurice E

    2016-01-01

    Microbes encounter a broad spectrum of antimicrobial compounds in their environments and often possess metabolic strategies to detoxify such xenobiotics. We have previously shown that Fusarium verticillioides, a fungal pathogen of maize known for its production of fumonisin mycotoxins, possesses two unlinked loci, FDB1 and FDB2, necessary for detoxification of antimicrobial compounds produced by maize, including the γ-lactam 2-benzoxazolinone (BOA). In support of these earlier studies, microarray analysis of F. verticillioides exposed to BOA identified the induction of multiple genes at FDB1 and FDB2, indicating the loci consist of gene clusters. One of the FDB1 cluster genes encoded a protein having domain homology to the metallo-β-lactamase (MBL) superfamily. Deletion of this gene (MBL1) rendered F. verticillioides incapable of metabolizing BOA and thus unable to grow on BOA-amended media. Deletion of other FDB1 cluster genes, in particular AMD1 and DLH1, did not affect BOA degradation. Phylogenetic analyses and topology testing of the FDB1 and FDB2 cluster genes suggested two horizontal transfer events among fungi, one being transfer of FDB1 from Fusarium to Colletotrichum, and the second being transfer of the FDB2 cluster from Fusarium to Aspergillus. Together, the results suggest that plant-derived xenobiotics have exerted evolutionary pressure on these fungi, leading to horizontal transfer of genes that enhance fitness or virulence.

  4. β-globin gene cluster haplotypes in ethnic minority populations of southwest China

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Hao; Liu, Hongxian; Huang, Kai; Lin, Keqin; Huang, Xiaoqin; Chu, Jiayou; Ma, Shaohui; Yang, Zhaoqing

    2017-01-01

    The genetic diversity and relationships among ethnic minority populations of southwest China were investigated using seven polymorphic restriction enzyme sites in the β-globin gene cluster. The haplotypes of 1392 chromosomes from ten ethnic populations living in southwest China were determined. Linkage equilibrium and recombination hotspot were found between the 5′ sites and 3′ sites of the β-globin gene cluster. 5′ haplotypes 2 (+−−−), 6 (−++−+), 9 (−++++) and 3′ haplotype FW3 (−+) were the predominant haplotypes. Notably, haplotype 9 frequency was significantly high in the southwest populations, indicating their difference with other Chinese. The interpopulation differentiation of southwest Chinese minority populations is less than those in populations of northern China and other continents. Phylogenetic analysis shows that populations sharing same ethnic origin or language clustered to each other, indicating current β-globin cluster diversity in the Chinese populations reflects their ethnic origin and linguistic affiliations to a great extent. This study characterizes β-globin gene cluster haplotypes in southwest Chinese minorities for the first time, and reveals the genetic variability and affinity of these populations using β-globin cluster haplotype frequencies. The results suggest that ethnic origin plays an important role in shaping variations of the β-globin gene cluster in the southwestern ethnic populations of China. PMID:28205625

  5. Molecular analysis of the cercosporin biosynthetic gene cluster in Cercospora nicotianae.

    PubMed

    Chen, Huiqin; Lee, Miin-Huey; Daub, Margret E; Chung, Kuang-Ren

    2007-05-01

    We describe a core gene cluster, comprised of eight genes (designated CTB1-8), and associated with cercosporin toxin production in Cercospora nicotianae. Sequence analysis identified 10 putative open reading frames (ORFs) flanking the previously characterized CTB1 and CTB3 genes that encode, respectively, the polyketide synthase and a dual methyltransferase/monooxygenase required for cercosporin production. Expression of eight of the genes was co-ordinately induced under cercosporin-producing conditions and was regulated by the Zn(II)Cys(6) transcriptional activator, CTB8. Expression of the genes, affected by nitrogen and carbon sources and pH, was also controlled by another transcription activator, CRG1, previously shown to regulate cercosporin production and resistance. Disruption of the CTB2 gene encoding a methyltransferase or the CTB8 gene yielded mutants that were completely defective in cercosporin production and inhibitory expression of the other CTB cluster genes. Similar 'feedback' transcriptional inhibition was observed when the CTB1, or CTB3 but not CTB4 gene was inactivated. Expression of four ORFs located on the two distal ends of the cluster did not correlate with cercosporin biosynthesis and did not show regulation by CTB8, suggesting that the biosynthetic cluster was limited to CTB1-8. A biosynthetic pathway and a regulatory network leading to cercosporin formation are proposed.

  6. Revealing gene clusters associated with the development of cholangiocarcinoma, based on a time series analysis.

    PubMed

    Wu, Jianyu; Xiao, Zhifu; Zhao, Xiulei; Wu, Xiangsong

    2015-05-01

    Cholangiocarcinoma (CC) is a rapidly lethal malignancy and currently is considered to be incurable. Biomarkers related to the development of CC remain unclear. The present study aimed to identify differentially expressed genes (DEGs) between normal tissue and intrahepatic CC, as well as specific gene expression patterns that changed together with the development of CC. By using a two‑way analysis of variance test, the biomarkers that could distinguish between normal tissue and intrahepatic CC dissected from different days were identified. A k‑means cluster method was used to identify gene clusters associated with the development of CC according to their changing expression pattern. Functional enrichment analysis was used to infer the function of each of the gene sets. A time series analysis was constructed to reveal gene signatures that were associated with the development of CC based on gene expression profile changes. Genes related to CC were shown to be involved in 'mitochondrion' and 'focal adhesion'. Three interesting gene groups were identified by the k‑means cluster method. Gene clusters with a unique expression pattern are related with the development of CC. The data of this study will facilitate novel discoveries regarding the genetic study of CC by further work.

  7. Human pheromones and sexual attraction.

    PubMed

    Grammer, Karl; Fink, Bernhard; Neave, Nick

    2005-02-01

    Olfactory communication is very common amongst animals, and since the discovery of an accessory olfactory system in humans, possible human olfactory communication has gained considerable scientific interest. The importance of the human sense of smell has by far been underestimated in the past. Humans and other primates have been regarded as primarily 'optical animals' with highly developed powers of vision but a relatively undeveloped sense of smell. In recent years this assumption has undergone major revision. Several studies indicate that humans indeed seem to use olfactory communication and are even able to produce and perceive certain pheromones; recent studies have found that pheromones may play an important role in the behavioural and reproduction biology of humans. In this article we review the present evidence of the effect of human pheromones and discuss the role of olfactory cues in human sexual behaviour.

  8. The Genome of Tolypocladium inflatum: Evolution, Organization, and Expression of the Cyclosporin Biosynthetic Gene Cluster

    PubMed Central

    Bushley, Kathryn E.; Raja, Rajani; Jaiswal, Pankaj; Cumbie, Jason S.; Nonogaki, Mariko; Boyd, Alexander E.; Owensby, C. Alisha; Knaus, Brian J.; Elser, Justin; Miller, Daniel; Di, Yanming; McPhail, Kerry L.; Spatafora, Joseph W.

    2013-01-01

    The ascomycete fungus Tolypocladium inflatum, a pathogen of beetle larvae, is best known as the producer of the immunosuppressant drug cyclosporin. The draft genome of T. inflatum strain NRRL 8044 (ATCC 34921), the isolate from which cyclosporin was first isolated, is presented along with comparative analyses of the biosynthesis of cyclosporin and other secondary metabolites in T. inflatum and related taxa. Phylogenomic analyses reveal previously undetected and complex patterns of homology between the nonribosomal peptide synthetase (NRPS) that encodes for cyclosporin synthetase (simA) and those of other secondary metabolites with activities against insects (e.g., beauvericin, destruxins, etc.), and demonstrate the roles of module duplication and gene fusion in diversification of NRPSs. The secondary metabolite gene cluster responsible for cyclosporin biosynthesis is described. In addition to genes necessary for cyclosporin biosynthesis, it harbors a gene for a cyclophilin, which is a member of a family of immunophilins known to bind cyclosporin. Comparative analyses support a lineage specific origin of the cyclosporin gene cluster rather than horizontal gene transfer from bacteria or other fungi. RNA-Seq transcriptome analyses in a cyclosporin-inducing medium delineate the boundaries of the cyclosporin cluster and reveal high levels of expression of the gene cluster cyclophilin. In medium containing insect hemolymph, weaker but significant upregulation of several genes within the cyclosporin cluster, including the highly expressed cyclophilin gene, was observed. T. inflatum also represents the first reference draft genome of Ophiocordycipitaceae, a third family of insect pathogenic fungi within the fungal order Hypocreales, and supports parallel and qualitatively distinct radiations of insect pathogens. The T. inflatum genome provides additional insight into the evolution and biosynthesis of cyclosporin and lays a foundation for further investigations of the role

  9. The genome of tolypocladium inflatum: evolution, organization, and expression of the cyclosporin biosynthetic gene cluster.

    PubMed

    Bushley, Kathryn E; Raja, Rajani; Jaiswal, Pankaj; Cumbie, Jason S; Nonogaki, Mariko; Boyd, Alexander E; Owensby, C Alisha; Knaus, Brian J; Elser, Justin; Miller, Daniel; Di, Yanming; McPhail, Kerry L; Spatafora, Joseph W

    2013-06-01

    The ascomycete fungus Tolypocladium inflatum, a pathogen of beetle larvae, is best known as the producer of the immunosuppressant drug cyclosporin. The draft genome of T. inflatum strain NRRL 8044 (ATCC 34921), the isolate from which cyclosporin was first isolated, is presented along with comparative analyses of the biosynthesis of cyclosporin and other secondary metabolites in T. inflatum and related taxa. Phylogenomic analyses reveal previously undetected and complex patterns of homology between the nonribosomal peptide synthetase (NRPS) that encodes for cyclosporin synthetase (simA) and those of other secondary metabolites with activities against insects (e.g., beauvericin, destruxins, etc.), and demonstrate the roles of module duplication and gene fusion in diversification of NRPSs. The secondary metabolite gene cluster responsible for cyclosporin biosynthesis is described. In addition to genes necessary for cyclosporin biosynthesis, it harbors a gene for a cyclophilin, which is a member of a family of immunophilins known to bind cyclosporin. Comparative analyses support a lineage specific origin of the cyclosporin gene cluster rather than horizontal gene transfer from bacteria or other fungi. RNA-Seq transcriptome analyses in a cyclosporin-inducing medium delineate the boundaries of the cyclosporin cluster and reveal high levels of expression of the gene cluster cyclophilin. In medium containing insect hemolymph, weaker but significant upregulation of several genes within the cyclosporin cluster, including the highly expressed cyclophilin gene, was observed. T. inflatum also represents the first reference draft genome of Ophiocordycipitaceae, a third family of insect pathogenic fungi within the fungal order Hypocreales, and supports parallel and qualitatively distinct radiations of insect pathogens. The T. inflatum genome provides additional insight into the evolution and biosynthesis of cyclosporin and lays a foundation for further investigations of the role

  10. The role of nutrient regulation and the Gpa2 protein in the mating pheromone response of C. albicans.

    PubMed

    Bennett, Richard J; Johnson, Alexander D

    2006-10-01

    Although traditionally classified as asexual, the human fungal pathogen Candida albicans can undergo highly efficient mating. A key component of this mating is the response to pheromone, which is mediated by a conserved kinase cascade that transduces the signal from the pheromone receptor to a transcriptional response in the nucleus. In this paper we show (i) that the detailed response of C. albicans to the alpha pheromone differs among clinical isolates, (ii) that the response depends critically on nutritional conditions, (iii) that the entire response is mediated by the Ste2 receptor, and (iv) that, in terms of genes induced, the response to alpha pheromone in C. albicans shows only marginal overlap with the response in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. We further investigated the nutritional control of pheromone induction and identify the GPA2 gene as a critical component. We found that Deltagpa2/Deltagpa2 mutants are hypersensitive to pheromone and, unlike wild-type strains, show efficient cell cycle arrest (including the formation of characteristic halos on solid medium) in response to mating pheromone. These results indicate that C. albicans, like several other fungal species but unlike S. cerevisiae, integrates signals from a nutrient-sensing pathway with those of the pheromone response MAP kinase pathway to generate the final transcriptional response.

  11. Sex Pheromone of Anastrepha striata.

    PubMed

    Cruz-López, Leopoldo; Malo, Edi A; Rojas, Julio C

    2015-05-01

    The guava fruit fly, Anastrepha striata, is a pest of several cultivated species of Myrtaceae in the American tropics and subtropics. During calling, A. striata males release numerous volatiles. This study was conducted to identify which of the male volatiles function as the A. striata sex pheromone and to investigate the effects of age and time of day on the emission of pheromone components. Analysis of the volatiles from males collected by solid phase microextraction using gas chromatography coupled to electroantennographic detection (GC-EAD) showed that three volatile compounds elicited repeatable responses from the antennae of females. The EAD-active compounds were identified by GC/mass spectrometry as ethyl hexanoate, linalool, and ethyl octanoate. In two-choice tests using Multilure traps placed in field cages, traps baited with live males, ethyl hexanoate, or the three-component blend captured more females than unbaited traps. However, there was no difference in catches when traps baited with live males were compared against traps baited with ethyl hexanoate. Although traps baited with the three-component blend caught more females than traps baited with live males, the difference was not significant. Analyses of pheromonal components released by A. striata males 8 to 26 days old showed that there was an effect of age on pheromone production and also a significant effect of time of day on pheromone emission. Release of the volatile compounds occurred from 14.00 to 18.00 hr, although traces of linalool were detected from 08.00 hr. Peak emission of pheromone compounds occurred at 14.00 hr.

  12. Automatic summarization of mouse gene information by clustering and sentence extraction from MEDLINE abstracts.

    PubMed

    Yang, Jianji; Cohen, Aaron M; Hersh, William

    2007-10-11

    Tools to automatically summarize gene information from the literature have the potential to help genomics researchers better interpret gene expression data and investigate biological pathways. The task of finding information on sets of genes is common for genomic researchers, and PubMed is still the first choice because the most recent and original information can only be found in the unstructured, free text biomedical literature. However, finding information on a set of genes by manually searching and scanning the literature is a time-consuming and daunting task for scientists. We built and evaluated a query-based automatic summarizer of information on mouse genes studied in microarray experiments. The system clusters a set of genes by MeSH, GO and free text features and presents summaries for each gene by ranked sentences extracted from MEDLINE abstracts. Evaluation showed that the system seems to provide meaningful clusters and informative sentences are ranked higher by the algorithm.

  13. Automatic Summarization of Mouse Gene Information by Clustering and Sentence Extraction from MEDLINE Abstracts

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Jianji; Cohen, Aaron M.; Hersh, William

    2007-01-01

    Tools to automatically summarize gene information from the literature have the potential to help genomics researchers better interpret gene expression data and investigate biological pathways. The task of finding information on sets of genes is common for genomic researchers, and PubMed is still the first choice because the most recent and original information can only be found in the unstructured, free text biomedical literature. However, finding information on a set of genes by manually searching and scanning the literature is a time-consuming and daunting task for scientists. We built and evaluated a query-based automatic summarizer of information on mouse genes studied in microarray experiments. The system clusters a set of genes by MeSH, GO and free text features and presents summaries for each gene by ranked sentences extracted from MEDLINE abstracts. Evaluation showed that the system seems to provide meaningful clusters and informative sentences are ranked higher by the algorithm. PMID:18693953

  14. Beta-lactam antibiotic biosynthetic genes have been conserved in clusters in prokaryotes and eukaryotes.

    PubMed Central

    Smith, D J; Burnham, M K; Bull, J H; Hodgson, J E; Ward, J M; Browne, P; Brown, J; Barton, B; Earl, A J; Turner, G

    1990-01-01

    A cosmid clone containing closely linked beta-lactam antibiotic biosynthetic genes was isolated from a gene library of Flavobacterium sp. SC 12,154. The location within the cluster of the DNA thought to contain the gene for delta-(L-alpha-aminoadipyl)-L-cysteinyl-D-valine synthetase (ACVS), the first step in the beta-lactam antibiotic biosynthetic pathway, was identified by a novel method. This DNA facilitated the isolation, by cross-hybridization, of the corresponding DNA from Streptomyces clavuligerus ATCC 27064, Penicillium chrysogenum Oli13 and Aspergillus nidulans R153. Evidence was obtained which confirmed that the cross-hybridizing sequences contained the ACVS gene. In each case the ACVS gene was found to be closely linked to other beta-lactam biosynthetic genes and constituted part of a gene cluster. Images Fig. 1. Fig. 2. Fig. 4. Fig. 5. Fig. 6. Fig. 7. PMID:2107074

  15. Insights into secondary metabolism from a global analysis of prokaryotic biosynthetic gene clusters

    PubMed Central

    Cimermancic, Peter; Medema, Marnix H.; Claesen, Jan; Kurita, Kenji; Wieland Brown, Laura C.; Mavrommatis, Konstantinos; Pati, Amrita; Godfrey, Paul A.; Koehrsen, Michael; Clardy, Jon; Birren, Bruce W.; Takano, Eriko; Sali, Andrej; Linington, Roger G.; Fischbach, Michael A.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Although biosynthetic gene clusters (BGCs) have been discovered for hundreds of bacterial metabolites, our knowledge of their diversity remains limited. Here, we used a novel algorithm to systematically identify BGCs in the extensive extant microbial sequencing data. Network analysis of the predicted BGCs revealed large gene cluster families, the vast majority uncharacterized. We experimentally characterized the most prominent family, consisting of two subfamilies of hundreds of BGCs distributed throughout the Proteobacteria; their products are aryl polyenes, lipids with an aryl head group conjugated to a polyene tail. We identified a distant relationship to a third subfamily of aryl polyene BGCs, and together the three subfamilies represent the largest known family of biosynthetic gene clusters, with more than 1,000 members. Although these clusters are widely divergent in sequence, their small molecule products are remarkably conserved, indicating for the first time the important roles these compounds play in Gram-negative cell biology. PMID:25036635

  16. Hox genes of the Japanese eel Anguilla japonica and Hox cluster evolution in teleosts.

    PubMed

    Guo, Baocheng; Gan, Xiaoni; He, Shunping

    2010-03-15

    Compared with other diploid teleosts (2n=48), anguilloid fish have a specialized karyotype (2n=38) and remarkable morphological variation, and represent one basal group species of teleosts. To investigate the Hox gene/cluster inventory in basal teleosts, a PCR-based survey of Hox genes in the Japanese eel (Anguilla japonica) was conducted with both gene-specific and homeobox-targeted degenerate primers. Our data provide evidence that at least 34 distinct Hox genes exist in the Japanese eel genome and that they represent eight Hox clusters. Duplication of Hox genes in the Japanese eel appears to be the result of the fish-specific genome duplication (FSGD) event. The Japanese eel shared the FSGD event with other teleosts such as zebrafish and pufferfish. A member of Hox paralog group one (HoxA1b) was preserved in the Japanese eel but was lost in other teleosts. Available Hox data revealed that the Hox cluster evolved distinctly in different teleost lineages. All duplicated Hox clusters were retained after the FSGD event in basal teleosts like in the Japanese eel, whereas crown teleosts lost one cluster (HoxCb or HoxDb). Based on current teleostean phylogeny, the HoxDb cluster was lost independently in the teleost lineages Otocephala and Euteleostei.

  17. Cloning and engineering of the cinnamycin biosynthetic gene cluster from Streptomyces cinnamoneus cinnamoneus DSM 40005

    PubMed Central

    Widdick, D. A.; Dodd, H. M.; Barraille, P.; White, J.; Stein, T. H.; Chater, K. F.; Gasson, M. J.; Bibb, M. J.

    2003-01-01

    Lantibiotics are ribosomally synthesized oligopeptide antibiotics that contain lanthionine bridges derived by the posttranslational modification of amino acid residues. Here, we describe the cinnamycin biosynthetic gene cluster (cin) from Streptomyces cinnamoneus cinnamoneus DSM 40005, the first, to our knowledge, lantibiotic gene cluster from a high G+C bacterium to be cloned and sequenced. The cin cluster contains many genes not found in lantibiotic clusters from low G+C Gram-positive bacteria, including a Streptomyces antibiotic regulatory protein regulatory gene, and lacks others found in such clusters, such as a LanT-type transporter and a LanP-type protease. Transfer of the cin cluster to Streptomyces lividans resulted in heterologous production of cinnamycin. Furthermore, modification of the cinnamycin structural gene (cinA) led to production of two naturally occurring lantibiotics, duramycin and duramycin B, closely resembling cinnamycin, whereas attempts to make a more widely diverged derivative, duramycin C, failed to generate biologically active material. These results provide a basis for future attempts to construct extensive libraries of cinnamycin variants. PMID:12642677

  18. Selfish Operons: Horizontal Transfer May Drive the Evolution of Gene Clusters

    PubMed Central

    Lawrence, J. G.; Roth, J. R.

    1996-01-01

    A model is presented whereby the formation of gene clusters in bacteria is mediated by transfer of DNA within and among taxa. Bacterial operons are typically composed of genes whose products contribute to a single function. If this function is subject to weak selection or to long periods with no selection, the contributing genes may accumulate mutations and be lost by genetic drift. From a cell's perspective, once several genes are lost, the function can be restored only if all missing genes were acquired simultaneously by lateral transfer. The probability of transfer of multiple genes increases when genes are physically proximate. From a gene's perspective, horizontal transfer provides a way to escape evolutionary loss by allowing colonization of organisms lacking the encoded functions. Since organisms bearing clustered genes are more likely to act as successful donors, clustered genes would spread among bacterial genomes. The physical proximity of genes may be considered a selfish property of the operon since it affects the probability of successful horizontal transfer but may provide no physiological benefit to the host. This process predicts a mosaic structure of modern genomes in which ancestral chromosomal material is interspersed with novel, horizontally transferred operons providing peripheral metabolic functions. PMID:8844169

  19. Shared Gene Structures and Clusters of Mutually Exclusive Spliced Exons within the Metazoan Muscle Myosin Heavy Chain Genes

    PubMed Central

    Kollmar, Martin; Hatje, Klas

    2014-01-01

    Multicellular animals possess two to three different types of muscle tissues. Striated muscles have considerable ultrastructural similarity and contain a core set of proteins including the muscle myosin heavy chain (Mhc) protein. The ATPase activity of this myosin motor protein largely dictates muscle performance at the molecular level. Two different solutions to adjusting myosin properties to different muscle subtypes have been identified so far: Vertebrates and nematodes contain many independent differentially expressed Mhc genes while arthropods have single Mhc genes with clusters of mutually exclusive spliced exons (MXEs). The availability of hundreds of metazoan genomes now allowed us to study whether the ancient bilateria already contained MXEs, how MXE complexity subsequently evolved, and whether additional scenarios to control contractile properties in different muscles could be proposed, By reconstructing the Mhc genes from 116 metazoans we showed that all intron positions within the motor domain coding regions are conserved in all bilateria analysed. The last common ancestor of the bilateria already contained a cluster of MXEs coding for part of the loop-2 actin-binding sequence. Subsequently the protostomes and later the arthropods gained many further clusters while MXEs got completely lost independently in several branches (vertebrates and nematodes) and species (for example the annelid Helobdella robusta and the salmon louse Lepeophtheirus salmonis). Several bilateria have been found to encode multiple Mhc genes that might all or in part contain clusters of MXEs. Notable examples are a cluster of six tandemly arrayed Mhc genes, of which two contain MXEs, in the owl limpet Lottia gigantea and four Mhc genes with three encoding MXEs in the predatory mite Metaseiulus occidentalis. Our analysis showed that similar solutions to provide different myosin isoforms (multiple genes or clusters of MXEs or both) have independently been developed several times

  20. Genomics-driven discovery of the pneumocandin biosynthetic gene cluster in the fungus Glarea lozoyensis

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The antifungal therapy caspofungin is a semi-synthetic derivative of pneumocandin B0, a lipohexapeptide produced by the fungus Glarea lozoyensis, and was the first member of the echinocandin class approved for human therapy. The nonribosomal peptide synthetase (NRPS)-polyketide synthases (PKS) gene cluster responsible for pneumocandin biosynthesis from G. lozoyensis has not been elucidated to date. In this study, we report the elucidation of the pneumocandin biosynthetic gene cluster by whole genome sequencing of the G. lozoyensis wild-type strain ATCC 20868. Results The pneumocandin biosynthetic gene cluster contains a NRPS (GLNRPS4) and a PKS (GLPKS4) arranged in tandem, two cytochrome P450 monooxygenases, seven other modifying enzymes, and genes for L-homotyrosine biosynthesis, a component of the peptide core. Thus, the pneumocandin biosynthetic gene cluster is significantly more autonomous and organized than that of the recently characterized echinocandin B gene cluster. Disruption mutants of GLNRPS4 and GLPKS4 no longer produced the pneumocandins (A0 and B0), and the Δglnrps4 and Δglpks4 mutants lost antifungal activity against the human pathogenic fungus Candida albicans. In addition to pneumocandins, the G. lozoyensis genome encodes a rich repertoire of natural product-encoding genes including 24 PKSs, six NRPSs, five PKS-NRPS hybrids, two dimethylallyl tryptophan synthases, and 14 terpene synthases. Conclusions Characterization of the gene cluster provides a blueprint for engineering new pneumocandin derivatives with improved pharmacological properties. Whole genome estimation of the secondary metabolite-encoding genes from G. lozoyensis provides yet another example of the huge potential for drug discovery from natural products from the fungal kingdom. PMID:23688303

  1. Phylogenomics of the benzoxazinoid biosynthetic pathway of Poaceae: gene duplications and origin of the Bx cluster

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background The benzoxazinoids 2,4-dihydroxy-1,4-benzoxazin-3-one (DIBOA) and 2,4-dihydroxy-7- methoxy-1,4-benzoxazin-3-one (DIMBOA), are key defense compounds present in major agricultural crops such as maize and wheat. Their biosynthesis involves nine enzymes thought to form a linear pathway leading to the storage of DI(M)BOA as glucoside conjugates. Seven of the genes (Bx1-Bx6 and Bx8) form a cluster at the tip of the short arm of maize chromosome 4 that includes four P450 genes (Bx2-5) belonging to the same CYP71C subfamily. The origin of this cluster is unknown. Results We show that the pathway appeared following several duplications of the TSA gene (α-subunit of tryptophan synthase) and of a Bx2-like ancestral CYP71C gene and the recruitment of Bx8 before the radiation of Poaceae. The origins of Bx6 and Bx7 remain unclear. We demonstrate that the Bx2-like CYP71C ancestor was not committed to the benzoxazinoid pathway and that after duplications the Bx2-Bx5 genes were under positive selection on a few sites and underwent functional divergence, leading to the current specific biochemical properties of the enzymes. The absence of synteny between available Poaceae genomes involving the Bx gene regions is in contrast with the conserved synteny in the TSA gene region. Conclusions These results demonstrate that rearrangements following duplications of an IGL/TSA gene and of a CYP71C gene probably resulted in the clustering of the new copies (Bx1 and Bx2) at the tip of a chromosome in an ancestor of grasses. Clustering favored cosegregation and tip chromosomal location favored gene rearrangements that allowed the further recruitment of genes to the pathway. These events, a founding event and elongation events, may have been the key to the subsequent evolution of the benzoxazinoid biosynthetic cluster. PMID:22577841

  2. Phylogenomics of the benzoxazinoid biosynthetic pathway of Poaceae: gene duplications and origin of the Bx cluster.

    PubMed

    Dutartre, Leslie; Hilliou, Frédérique; Feyereisen, René

    2012-05-11

    The benzoxazinoids 2,4-dihydroxy-1,4-benzoxazin-3-one (DIBOA) and 2,4-dihydroxy-7- methoxy-1,4-benzoxazin-3-one (DIMBOA), are key defense compounds present in major agricultural crops such as maize and wheat. Their biosynthesis involves nine enzymes thought to form a linear pathway leading to the storage of DI(M)BOA as glucoside conjugates. Seven of the genes (Bx1-Bx6 and Bx8) form a cluster at the tip of the short arm of maize chromosome 4 that includes four P450 genes (Bx2-5) belonging to the same CYP71C subfamily. The origin of this cluster is unknown. We show that the pathway appeared following several duplications of the TSA gene (α-subunit of tryptophan synthase) and of a Bx2-like ancestral CYP71C gene and the recruitment of Bx8 before the radiation of Poaceae. The origins of Bx6 and Bx7 remain unclear. We demonstrate that the Bx2-like CYP71C ancestor was not committed to the benzoxazinoid pathway and that after duplications the Bx2-Bx5 genes were under positive selection on a few sites and underwent functional divergence, leading to the current specific biochemical properties of the enzymes. The absence of synteny between available Poaceae genomes involving the Bx gene regions is in contrast with the conserved synteny in the TSA gene region. These results demonstrate that rearrangements following duplications of an IGL/TSA gene and of a CYP71C gene probably resulted in the clustering of the new copies (Bx1 and Bx2) at the tip of a chromosome in an ancestor of grasses. Clustering favored cosegregation and tip chromosomal location favored gene rearrangements that allowed the further recruitment of genes to the pathway. These events, a founding event and elongation events, may have been the key to the subsequent evolution of the benzoxazinoid biosynthetic cluster.

  3. Degeneration of aflatoxin gene cluster in Aspergillus flavus from Africa and North America

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Aspergillus flavus is the primary causal agent of food and feed contamination with the toxic fungal metabolites aflatoxins. Aflatoxin-producing potential of A. flavus is known to vary among isolates. The genes involved in aflatoxin biosynthesis are clustered together and the order of genes within th...

  4. Variation in the fumonisin biosynthetic gene cluster in fumonisin-producing and nonproducing black aspergilli

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    The ability to produce fumonisin mycotoxins varies among members of the black aspergilli. Previously, analyses of selected genes in the fumonisin biosynthetic gene (fum) cluster in black aspergilli from California grapes indicated that fumonisin-nonproducing isolates of Aspergillus welwitschiae lack...

  5. A block mixture model to map eQTLs for gene clustering and networking.

    PubMed

    Wang, Ningtao; Gosik, Kirk; Li, Runze; Lindsay, Bruce; Wu, Rongling

    2016-02-19

    To study how genes function in a cellular and physiological process, a general procedure is to classify gene expression profiles into categories based on their similarity and reconstruct a regulatory network for functional elements. However, this procedure has not been implemented with the genetic mechanisms that underlie the organization of gene clusters and networks, despite much effort made to map expression quantitative trait loci (eQTLs) that affect the expression of individual genes. Here we address this issue by developing a computational approach that integrates gene clustering and network reconstruction with genetic mapping into a unifying framework. The approach can not only identify specific eQTLs that control how genes are clustered and organized toward biological functions, but also enable the investigation of the biological mechanisms that individual eQTLs perturb in a signaling pathway. We applied the new approach to characterize the effects of eQTLs on the structure and organization of gene clusters in Caenorhabditis elegans. This study provides the first characterization, to our knowledge, of the effects of genetic variants on the regulatory network of gene expression. The approach developed can also facilitate the genetic dissection of other dynamic processes, including development, physiology and disease progression in any organisms.

  6. Molecular analysis of the hrp gene cluster in Xanthomonas oryzae pathovar oryzae KACC10859.

    PubMed

    Cho, Hee-Jung; Park, Young-Jin; Noh, Tae-Hwan; Kim, Yeong-Tae; Kim, Jeong-Gu; Song, Eun-Sung; Lee, Dong-Hee; Lee, Byoung-Moo

    2008-06-01

    Xanthomonas oryzae pathovar oryzae is the causal agent of rice bacterial blight. The plant pathogenic bacterium X. oryzae pv. oryzae expresses a type III secretion system that is necessary for both the pathogenicity in susceptible hosts and the induction of the hypersensitive response in resistant plants. This specialized protein transport system is encoded by a 32.18kb hrp (hypersensitive response and pathogenicity) gene cluster. The hrp gene cluster is composed of nine hrp, nine hrc (hrp conserved) and eight hpa (hrp-associated) genes and is controlled by HrpG and HrpX, which are known as regulators of the hrp gene cluster. Before mutational analysis of these hrp genes, the transcriptional linkages of the core region of the hrp gene cluster from hpaB to hrcC of the X. oryzae pv. oryzae KACC10859 was determined and the non-polarity of EZTn5 insertional mutagenesis was demonstrated by reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction. Pathogenicity assays of these non-polar hrp mutants were carried out on the susceptible rice cultivar, Milyang-23. According to the results of these assays, all hrp-hrc, except hrpF, and hpaB mutants lost their pathogenicity, which indicates that most hrp-hrc genes encode essential pathogenicity factors. On the other hand, most hpa mutants showed decreased virulence in a different pattern, i.e., hpa genes are not essential but are important for pathogenicity.

  7. Fine mapping of disease genes via haplotype clustering.

    PubMed

    Waldron, E R B; Whittaker, J C; Balding, D J

    2006-02-01

    We propose an algorithm for analysing SNP-based population association studies, which is a development of that introduced by Molitor et al. [2003: Am J Hum Genet 73:1368-1384]. It uses clustering of haplotypes to overcome the major limitations of many current haplotype-based approaches. We define a between-haplotype score that is simple, yet appears to capture much of the information about evolutionary relatedness of the haplotypes in the vicinity of a (unobserved) putative causal locus. Haplotype clusters can then be defined via a putative ancestral haplotype and a cut-off distance. The number of an individual's two haplotypes that lie within the cluster predicts the individual's genotype at the causal locus. This predicted genotype can then be investigated for association with the phenotype of interest. We implement our approach within a Markov-chain Monte Carlo algorithm that, in effect, searches over locations and ancestral haplotypes to identify large, case-rich clusters. The algorithm successfully fine-maps a causal mutation in a test analysis using real data, and achieves almost 98% accuracy in predicting the genotype at the causal locus. A simulation study indicates that the new algorithm is substantially superior to alternative approaches, and it also allows us to identify situations in which multi-point approaches can substantially improve over single-SNP analyses. Our algorithm runs quickly and there is scope for extension to a wide range of disease models and genomic scales.

  8. Pheromone signaling during sexual reproduction in algae.

    PubMed

    Frenkel, Johannes; Vyverman, Wim; Pohnert, Georg

    2014-08-01

    Algae are found in all aquatic and many terrestrial habitats. They are dominant in phytoplankton and biofilms thereby contributing massively to global primary production. Since algae comprise photosynthetic representatives of the various protoctist groups their physiology and appearance is highly diverse. This diversity is also mirrored in their characteristic life cycles that exhibit various facets of ploidy and duration of the asexual phase as well as gamete morphology. Nevertheless, sexual reproduction in unicellular and colonial algae usually has as common motive that two specialized, sexually compatible haploid gametes establish physical contact and fuse. To guarantee mating success, processes during sexual reproduction are highly synchronized and regulated. This review focuses on sex pheromones of algae that play a key role in these processes. Especially, the diversity of sexual strategies as well as of the compounds involved are the focus of this contribution. Discoveries connected to algal pheromone chemistry shed light on the role of key evolutionary processes, including endosymbiotic events and lateral gene transfer, speciation and adaptation at all phylogenetic levels. But progress in this field might also in the future provide valid tools for the manipulation of aquaculture and environmental processes.

  9. Sequence breakpoints in the aflatoxin biosynthesis gene cluster and flanking regions in nonaflatoxigenic Aspergillus flavus isolates.

    PubMed

    Chang, Perng-Kuang; Horn, Bruce W; Dorner, Joe W

    2005-11-01

    Aspergillus flavus populations are genetically diverse. Isolates that produce either, neither, or both aflatoxins and cyclopiazonic acid (CPA) are present in the field. We investigated defects in the aflatoxin gene cluster in 38 nonaflatoxigenic A. flavus isolates collected from southern United States. PCR assays using aflatoxin-gene-specific primers grouped these isolates into eight (A-H) deletion patterns. Patterns C, E, G, and H, which contain 40 kb deletions, were examined for their sequence breakpoints. Pattern C has one breakpoint in the cypA 3' untranslated region (UTR) and another in the verA coding region. Pattern E has a breakpoint in the amdA coding region and another in the ver1 5'UTR. Pattern G contains a deletion identical to the one found in pattern C and has another deletion that extends from the cypA coding region to one end of the chromosome as suggested by the presence of telomeric sequence repeats, CCCTAATGTTGA. Pattern H has a deletion of the entire aflatoxin gene cluster from the hexA coding region in the sugar utilization gene cluster to the telomeric region. Thus, deletions in the aflatoxin gene cluster among A. flavus isolates are not rare, and the patterns appear to be diverse. Genetic drift may be a driving force that is responsible for the loss of the entire aflatoxin gene cluster in nonaflatoxigenic A. flavus isolates when aflatoxins have lost their adaptive value in nature.

  10. Clustering change patterns using Fourier transformation with time-course gene expression data.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jaehee

    2011-01-01

    To understand the behavior of genes, it is important to explore how the patterns of gene expression change over a period of time because biologically related gene groups can share the same change patterns. In this study, the problem of finding similar change patterns is induced to clustering with the derivative Fourier coefficients. This work is aimed at discovering gene groups with similar change patterns which share similar biological properties. We developed a statistical model using derivative Fourier coefficients to identify similar change patterns of gene expression. We used a model-based method to cluster the Fourier series estimation of derivatives. We applied our model to cluster change patterns of yeast cell cycle microarray expression data with alpha-factor synchronization. It showed that, as the method clusters with the probability-neighboring data, the model-based clustering with our proposed model yielded biologically interpretable results. We expect that our proposed Fourier analysis with suitably chosen smoothing parameters could serve as a useful tool in classifying genes and interpreting possible biological change patterns.

  11. Cluster headache is associated with the alcohol dehydrogenase 4 (ADH4) gene.

    PubMed

    Rainero, Innocenzo; Rubino, Elisa; Gallone, Salvatore; Fenoglio, Pierpaola; Negro, Elisa; De Martino, Paola; Savi, Lidia; Pinessi, Lorenzo

    2010-01-01

    Alcohol is a well-known trigger factor for cluster headache attacks during the active phases of the disease. The alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) pathway, which converts alcohol to the toxic substance acetaldehyde, is responsible for most of the alcohol breakdown in the liver. Humans have 7 ADH genes, tightly clustered on chromosome 4q21-q25, that encode different ADH isoforms. The ADH4 gene encodes the class II ADH4 pi subunit, which contributes, in addition to alcohol, to the metabolization of a wide variety of substrates, including retinol, other aliphatic alcohols, hydroxysteroids, and biogenic amines. The purpose of this study was to investigate the association of genetic variants within the ADH4 gene with cluster headache susceptibility and phenotype. A total of 110 consecutive unrelated cluster headache patients and 203 age- and sex-matched healthy controls of Caucasian origin were involved in the study. Patients and controls were genotyped for 2 bi-allelic single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) of the ADH4 gene: SNP1 - rs1800759 and SNP2 - rs1126671. Allele, genotype, and haplotype frequencies of the examined polymorphisms were compared between cases and controls. Genotype frequencies of the rs1126671 polymorphism resulted significantly different between cluster headache patients and controls (chi(2) = 10.269, P = .006). The carriage of the AA genotype, in comparison with remaining genotypes, was associated with a significantly increased disease risk (OR = 2.33, 95% CI: 1.25-4.37). Haplotype analysis confirmed the association between the ADH4 gene and the disease. No association between different clinical characteristics of cluster headache and the examined polymorphisms was found. Our data suggest that cluster headache is associated with the ADH4 gene or a linked locus. Additional studies are warranted to elucidate the role of this gene in the etiopathogenesis of the disease.

  12. Characteristics and clustering of human ribosomal protein genes

    PubMed Central

    Ishii, Kyota; Washio, Takanori; Uechi, Tamayo; Yoshihama, Maki; Kenmochi, Naoya; Tomita, Masaru

    2006-01-01

    Background The ribosome is a central player in the translation system, which in mammals consists of four RNA species and 79 ribosomal proteins (RPs). The control mechanisms of gene expression and the functions of RPs are believed to be identical. Most RP genes have common promoters and were therefore assumed to have a unified gene expression control mechanism. Results We systematically analyzed the homogeneity and heterogeneity of RP genes on the basis of their expression profiles, promoter structures, encoded amino acid compositions, and codon compositions. The results revealed that (1) most RP genes are coordinately expressed at the mRNA level, with higher signals in the spleen, lymph node dissection (LND), and fetal brain. However, 17 genes, including the P protein genes (RPLP0, RPLP1, RPLP2), are expressed in a tissue-specific manner. (2) Most promoters have GC boxes and possible binding sites for nuclear respiratory factor 2, Yin and Yang 1, and/or activator protein 1. However, they do not have canonical TATA boxes. (3) Analysis of the amino acid composition of the encoded proteins indicated a high lysine and arginine content. (4) The major RP genes exhibit a characteristic synonymous codon composition with high rates of G or C in the third-codon position and a high content of AAG, CAG, ATC, GAG, CAC, and CTG. Conclusion Eleven of the RP genes are still identified as being unique and did not exhibit at least some of the above characteristics, indicating that they may have unknown functions not present in other RP genes. Furthermore, we found sequences conserved between human and mouse genes around the transcription start sites and in the intronic regions. This study suggests certain overall trends and characteristic features of human RP genes. PMID:16504170

  13. Structural variation of the ribosomal gene cluster within the class Insecta

    SciTech Connect

    Mukha, D.V.; Sidorenko, A.P.; Lazebnaya, I.V.

    1995-09-01

    General estimation of ribosomal DNA variation within the class Insecta is presented. It is shown that, using blot-hybridization, one can detect differences in the structure of the ribosomal gene cluster not only between genera within an order, but also between species within a genera, including sibling species. Structure of the ribosomal gene cluster of the Coccinelli