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Sample records for reveals evolutionarily conserved

  1. Comparison of splice sites reveals that long noncoding RNAs are evolutionarily well conserved

    PubMed Central

    Nitsche, Anne; Rose, Dominic; Fasold, Mario; Reiche, Kristin; Stadler, Peter F.

    2015-01-01

    Large-scale RNA sequencing has revealed a large number of long mRNA-like transcripts (lncRNAs) that do not code for proteins. The evolutionary history of these lncRNAs has been notoriously hard to study systematically due to their low level of sequence conservation that precludes comprehensive homology-based surveys and makes them nearly impossible to align. An increasing number of special cases, however, has been shown to be at least as old as the vertebrate lineage. Here we use the conservation of splice sites to trace the evolution of lncRNAs. We show that >85% of the human GENCODE lncRNAs were already present at the divergence of placental mammals and many hundreds of these RNAs date back even further. Nevertheless, we observe a fast turnover of intron/exon structures. We conclude that lncRNA genes are evolutionary ancient components of vertebrate genomes that show an unexpected and unprecedented evolutionary plasticity. We offer a public web service (http://splicemap.bioinf.uni-leipzig.de) that allows to retrieve sets of orthologous splice sites and to produce overview maps of evolutionarily conserved splice sites for visualization and further analysis. An electronic supplement containing the ncRNA data sets used in this study is available at http://www.bioinf.uni-leipzig.de/publications/supplements/12-001. PMID:25802408

  2. Unique C. elegans telomeric overhang structures reveal the evolutionarily conserved properties of telomeric DNA

    PubMed Central

    Školáková, Petra; Foldynová-Trantírková, Silvie; Bednářová, Klára; Fiala, Radovan; Vorlíčková, Michaela; Trantírek, Lukáš

    2015-01-01

    There are two basic mechanisms that are associated with the maintenance of the telomere length, which endows cancer cells with unlimited proliferative potential. One mechanism, referred to as alternative lengthening of telomeres (ALT), accounts for approximately 10–15% of all human cancers. Tumours engaged in the ALT pathway are characterised by the presence of the single stranded 5′-C-rich telomeric overhang (C-overhang). This recently identified hallmark of ALT cancers distinguishes them from healthy tissues and renders the C-overhang as a clear target for anticancer therapy. We analysed structures of the 5′-C-rich and 3′-G-rich telomeric overhangs from human and Caenorhabditis elegans, the recently established multicellular in vivo model of ALT tumours. We show that the telomeric DNA from C. elegans and humans forms fundamentally different secondary structures. The unique structural characteristics of C. elegans telomeric DNA that are distinct not only from those of humans but also from those of other multicellular eukaryotes allowed us to identify evolutionarily conserved properties of telomeric DNA. Differences in structural organisation of the telomeric DNA between the C. elegans and human impose limitations on the use of the C. elegans as an ALT tumour model. PMID:25855805

  3. The presence of disulfide bonds reveals an evolutionarily conserved mechanism involved in mitochondrial protein translocase assembly

    PubMed Central

    Wrobel, Lidia; Sokol, Anna M.; Chojnacka, Magdalena; Chacinska, Agnieszka

    2016-01-01

    Disulfide bond formation is crucial for the biogenesis and structure of many proteins that are localized in the intermembrane space of mitochondria. The importance of disulfide bond formation within mitochondrial proteins was extended beyond soluble intermembrane space proteins. Tim22, a membrane protein and core component of the mitochondrial translocase TIM22, forms an intramolecular disulfide bond in yeast. Tim22 belongs to the Tim17/Tim22/Tim23 family of protein translocases. Here, we present evidence of the high evolutionary conservation of disulfide bond formation in Tim17 and Tim22 among fungi and metazoa. Topological models are proposed that include the location of disulfide bonds relative to the predicted transmembrane regions. Yeast and human Tim22 variants that are not oxidized do not properly integrate into the membrane complex. Moreover, the lack of Tim17 oxidation disrupts the TIM23 translocase complex. This underlines the importance of disulfide bond formation for mature translocase assembly through membrane stabilization of weak transmembrane domains. PMID:27265872

  4. Evolutionarily conserved regulation of TOR signalling.

    PubMed

    Takahara, Terunao; Maeda, Tatsuya

    2013-07-01

    The target of rapamycin (TOR) is an evolutionarily conserved protein kinase that regulates cell growth in response to various environmental as well as intracellular cues through the formation of 2 distinct TOR complexes (TORC), TORC1 and TORC2. Dysregulation of TORC1 and TORC2 activity is closely associated with various diseases, including diabetes, cancer and neurodegenerative disorders. Over the past few years, new regulatory mechanisms of TORC1 and TORC2 activity have been elucidated. Furthermore, recent advances in the study of TOR inhibitors have revealed previously unrecognized cellular functions of TORC1. In this review, we briefly summarize the current understanding of the evolutionarily conserved TOR signalling from upstream regulators to downstream events.

  5. Evolutionarily Conserved Pattern of Interactions in a Protein Revealed by Local Thermal Expansion Properties.

    PubMed

    Dellarole, Mariano; Caro, Jose A; Roche, Julien; Fossat, Martin; Barthe, Philippe; García-Moreno E, Bertrand; Royer, Catherine A; Roumestand, Christian

    2015-07-29

    The way in which the network of intramolecular interactions determines the cooperative folding and conformational dynamics of a protein remains poorly understood. High-pressure NMR spectroscopy is uniquely suited to examine this problem because it combines the site-specific resolution of the NMR experiments with the local character of pressure perturbations. Here we report on the temperature dependence of the site-specific volumetric properties of various forms of staphylococcal nuclease (SNase), including three variants with engineered internal cavities, as measured with high-pressure NMR spectroscopy. The strong temperature dependence of pressure-induced unfolding arises from poorly understood differences in thermal expansion between the folded and unfolded states. A significant inverse correlation was observed between the global thermal expansion of the folded proteins and the number of strong intramolecular hydrogen bonds, as determined by the temperature coefficient of the backbone amide chemical shifts. Comparison of the identity of these strong H-bonds with the co-evolution of pairs of residues in the SNase protein family suggests that the architecture of the interactions detected in the NMR experiments could be linked to a functional aspect of the protein. Moreover, the temperature dependence of the residue-specific volume changes of unfolding yielded residue-specific differences in expansivity and revealed how mutations impact intramolecular interaction patterns. These results show that intramolecular interactions in the folded states of proteins impose constraints against thermal expansion and that, hence, knowledge of site-specific thermal expansivity offers insight into the patterns of strong intramolecular interactions and other local determinants of protein stability, cooperativity, and potentially also of function.

  6. Phylogenetic Footprinting Reveals Evolutionarily Conserved Regions of the Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone Gene that Enhance Cell-Specific Expression

    PubMed Central

    GIVENS, MARJORY L.; KUROTANI, REIKO; RAVE-HAREL, NAAMA; MILLER, NICHOL L. G.; MELLON, PAMELA L.

    2010-01-01

    Reproductive function is controlled by the hypothalamic neuropeptide, GnRH, which serves as the central regulator of the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis. GnRH expression is limited to a small population of neurons in the hypothalamus. Targeting this minute population of neurons (as few as 800 in the mouse) requires regulatory elements upstream of the GnRH gene that remain to be fully characterized. Previously, we have identified an evolutionarily conserved promoter region (−173 to −1) and an enhancer (−1863 to −1571) in the rat gene that targets a subset of the GnRH neurons in vivo. In the present study, we used phylogenetic sequence comparison between human and rodents and analysis of the transcription factor clusters within conserved regions in an attempt to identify additional upstream regulatory elements. This approach led to the characterization of a new upstream enhancer that regulates expression of GnRH in a cell-specific manner. Within this upstream enhancer are nine binding sites for Octamer-binding transcription factor 1 (OCT1), known to be an important transcriptional regulator of GnRH gene expression. In addition, we have identified nuclear factor I (NF1) binding to multiple elements in the GnRH-regulatory regions, each in close proximity to OCT1. We show that OCT1 and NF1 physically and functionally interact. Moreover, the OCT1 and NF1 binding sites in the regulatory regions appear to be essential for appropriate GnRH gene expression. These findings indicate a role for this upstream enhancer and novel OCT1/NF1 complexes in neuron-restricted expression of the GnRH gene. PMID:15319450

  7. Evolutionarily conserved genes preferentially accumulate introns

    PubMed Central

    Carmel, Liran; Rogozin, Igor B.; Wolf, Yuri I.; Koonin, Eugene V.

    2007-01-01

    Introns that interrupt eukaryotic protein-coding sequences are generally thought to be nonfunctional. However, for reasons still poorly understood, positions of many introns are highly conserved in evolution. Previous reconstructions of intron gain and loss events during eukaryotic evolution used a variety of simplified evolutionary models that yielded contradicting conclusions and are not suited to reveal some of the key underlying processes. We combine a comprehensive probabilistic model and an extended data set, including 391 conserved genes from 19 eukaryotes, to uncover previously unnoticed aspects of intron evolution—in particular, to assign intron gain and loss rates to individual genes. The rates of intron gain and loss in a gene show moderate positive correlation. A gene’s intron gain rate shows a highly significant negative correlation with the coding-sequence evolution rate; intron loss rate also significantly, but positively, correlates with the sequence evolution rate. Correlations of the opposite signs, albeit less significant ones, are observed between intron gain and loss rates and gene expression level. It is proposed that intron evolution includes a neutral component, which is manifest in the positive correlation between the gain and loss rates and a selection-driven component as reflected in the links between intron gain and loss and sequence evolution. The increased intron gain and decreased intron loss in evolutionarily conserved genes indicate that intron insertion often might be adaptive, whereas some of the intron losses might be deleterious. This apparent functional importance of introns is likely to be due, at least in part, to their multiple effects on gene expression. PMID:17495009

  8. Evolutionarily conserved sequences on human chromosome 21

    SciTech Connect

    Frazer, Kelly A.; Sheehan, John B.; Stokowski, Renee P.; Chen, Xiyin; Hosseini, Roya; Cheng, Jan-Fang; Fodor, Stephen P.A.; Cox, David R.; Patil, Nila

    2001-09-01

    Comparison of human sequences with the DNA of other mammals is an excellent means of identifying functional elements in the human genome. Here we describe the utility of high-density oligonucleotide arrays as a rapid approach for comparing human sequences with the DNA of multiple species whose sequences are not presently available. High-density arrays representing approximately 22.5 Mb of nonrepetitive human chromosome 21 sequence were synthesized and then hybridized with mouse and dog DNA to identify sequences conserved between humans and mice (human-mouse elements) and between humans and dogs (human-dog elements). Our data show that sequence comparison of multiple species provides a powerful empiric method for identifying actively conserved elements in the human genome. A large fraction of these evolutionarily conserved elements are present in regions on chromosome 21 that do not encode known genes.

  9. An evolutionarily conserved pathway controls proteasome homeostasis

    PubMed Central

    Rousseau, Adrien; Bertolotti, Anne

    2016-01-01

    The proteasome is essential for the selective degradation of most cellular proteins but how cells maintain adequate amounts of proteasome is unclear. Here we found an evolutionarily conserved signalling pathway controlling proteasome homeostasis. Central to this pathway is TORC1 whose inhibition induced all known yeast 19S regulatory particle assembly-chaperones (RACs) as well as proteasome subunits. Downstream of TORC1 inhibition, the yeast mitogen-activated protein kinase, Mpk1, ensured that the supply of RACs and proteasome subunits increased under challenging conditions to maintain proteasomal degradation and cell viability. This adaptive pathway was evolutionarily conserved, with mTOR and Erk5 controlling the levels of the four mammalian RACs and proteasome abundance. Thus, the central growth and stress controllers, TORC1 and Mpk1/Erk5, endow cells with a rapid and vital adaptive response to adjust proteasome abundance to the rising needs. Enhancing this pathway may be a useful therapeutic approach for diseases resulting from impaired proteasomal degradation. PMID:27462806

  10. An evolutionarily conserved pathway controls proteasome homeostasis.

    PubMed

    Rousseau, Adrien; Bertolotti, Anne

    2016-08-11

    The proteasome is essential for the selective degradation of most cellular proteins, but how cells maintain adequate amounts of proteasome is unclear. Here we show that there is an evolutionarily conserved signalling pathway controlling proteasome homeostasis. Central to this pathway is TORC1, the inhibition of which induced all known yeast 19S regulatory particle assembly-chaperones (RACs), as well as proteasome subunits. Downstream of TORC1 inhibition, the yeast mitogen-activated protein kinase, Mpk1, acts to increase the supply of RACs and proteasome subunits under challenging conditions in order to maintain proteasomal degradation and cell viability. This adaptive pathway was evolutionarily conserved, with mTOR and ERK5 controlling the levels of the four mammalian RACs and proteasome abundance. Thus, the central growth and stress controllers, TORC1 and Mpk1/ERK5, endow cells with a rapid and vital adaptive response to adjust proteasome abundance in response to the rising needs of cells. Enhancing this pathway may be a useful therapeutic approach for diseases resulting from impaired proteasomal degradation.

  11. Evolutionarily Conserved, Multitasking TRP Channels: Lessons from Worms and Flies

    PubMed Central

    Venkatachalam, Kartik; Luo, Junjie; Montell, Craig

    2015-01-01

    The Transient Receptor Potential (TRP) channel family is comprised of a large group of cation-permeable channels, which display an extraordinary diversity of roles in sensory signaling. TRPs allow animals to detect chemicals, mechanical force, light, and changes in temperature. Consequently, these channels control a plethora of animal behaviors. Moreover, their functions are not limited to the classical senses, as they are cellular sensors, which are critical for ionic homeostasis and metabolism. Two genetically tractable invertebrate model organisms, Caenorhabditis elegans and Drosophila melanogaster, have led the way in revealing a wide array of sensory roles and behaviors that depend on TRP channels. Two overriding themes have emerged from these studies. First, TRPs are multitasking proteins, and second, many functions and modes of activation of these channels are evolutionarily conserved, including some that were formerly thought to be unique to invertebrates, such as phototransduction. Thus, worms and flies offer the potential to decipher roles for mammalian TRPs, which would otherwise not be suspected. PMID:24961975

  12. Protection of CpG islands from DNA methylation is DNA-encoded and evolutionarily conserved

    PubMed Central

    Long, Hannah K.; King, Hamish W.; Patient, Roger K.; Odom, Duncan T.; Klose, Robert J.

    2016-01-01

    DNA methylation is a repressive epigenetic modification that covers vertebrate genomes. Regions known as CpG islands (CGIs), which are refractory to DNA methylation, are often associated with gene promoters and play central roles in gene regulation. Yet how CGIs in their normal genomic context evade the DNA methylation machinery and whether these mechanisms are evolutionarily conserved remains enigmatic. To address these fundamental questions we exploited a transchromosomic animal model and genomic approaches to understand how the hypomethylated state is formed in vivo and to discover whether mechanisms governing CGI formation are evolutionarily conserved. Strikingly, insertion of a human chromosome into mouse revealed that promoter-associated CGIs are refractory to DNA methylation regardless of host species, demonstrating that DNA sequence plays a central role in specifying the hypomethylated state through evolutionarily conserved mechanisms. In contrast, elements distal to gene promoters exhibited more variable methylation between host species, uncovering a widespread dependence on nucleotide frequency and occupancy of DNA-binding transcription factors in shaping the DNA methylation landscape away from gene promoters. This was exemplified by young CpG rich lineage-restricted repeat sequences that evaded DNA methylation in the absence of co-evolved mechanisms targeting methylation to these sequences, and species specific DNA binding events that protected against DNA methylation in CpG poor regions. Finally, transplantation of mouse chromosomal fragments into the evolutionarily distant zebrafish uncovered the existence of a mechanistically conserved and DNA-encoded logic which shapes CGI formation across vertebrate species. PMID:27084945

  13. Epigenetic Pattern on the Human Y Chromosome Is Evolutionarily Conserved

    PubMed Central

    Meng, Hao; Agbagwa, Ikechukwu O.; Wang, Ling-Xiang; Wang, Yingzhi; Yan, Shi; Ren, Shancheng; Sun, Yinghao; Pei, Gang; Liu, Xin; Liu, Jiang; Jin, Li; Li, Hui; Sun, Yingli

    2016-01-01

    DNA methylation plays an important role for mammalian development. However, it is unclear whether the DNA methylation pattern is evolutionarily conserved. The Y chromosome serves as a powerful tool for the study of human evolution because it is transferred between males. In this study, based on deep-rooted pedigrees and the latest Y chromosome phylogenetic tree, we performed epigenetic pattern analysis of the Y chromosome from 72 donors. By comparing their respective DNA methylation level, we found that the DNA methylation pattern on the Y chromosome was stable among family members and haplogroups. Interestingly, two haplogroup-specific methylation sites were found, which were both genotype-dependent. Moreover, the African and Asian samples also had similar DNA methylation pattern with a remote divergence time. Our findings indicated that the DNA methylation pattern on the Y chromosome was conservative during human male history. PMID:26760298

  14. Aligning science and policy to achieve evolutionarily enlightened conservation.

    PubMed

    Cook, Carly N; Sgrò, Carla M

    2016-11-11

    There is increasing recognition among conservation scientists that long-term conservation outcomes could be improved through better integration of evolutionary theory into management practices. Despite concerns that the importance of key concepts emerging from evolutionary theory (i.e., evolutionary principles and processes) are not being recognized by managers, there has been little effort to determine the level of integration of evolutionary theory into conservation policy and practice. We assessed conservation policy at 3 scales (international, national, and provincial) on 3 continents to quantify the degree to which key evolutionary concepts, such as genetic diversity and gene flow, are being incorporated into conservation practice. We also evaluated the availability of clear guidance within the applied evolutionary biology literature as to how managers can change their management practices to achieve better conservation outcomes. Despite widespread recognition of the importance of maintaining genetic diversity, conservation policies provide little guidance about how this can be achieved in practice and other relevant evolutionary concepts, such as inbreeding depression, are mentioned rarely. In some cases the poor integration of evolutionary concepts into management reflects a lack of decision-support tools in the literature. Where these tools are available, such as risk-assessment frameworks, they are not being adopted by conservation policy makers, suggesting that the availability of a strong evidence base is not the only barrier to evolutionarily enlightened management. We believe there is a clear need for more engagement by evolutionary biologists with policy makers to develop practical guidelines that will help managers make changes to conservation practice. There is also an urgent need for more research to better understand the barriers to and opportunities for incorporating evolutionary theory into conservation practice.

  15. Expression of human Cfdp1 gene in Drosophila reveals new insights into the function of the evolutionarily conserved BCNT protein family

    PubMed Central

    Messina, Giovanni; Atterrato, Maria Teresa; Fanti, Laura; Giordano, Ennio; Dimitri, Patrizio

    2016-01-01

    The Bucentaur (BCNT) protein family is widely distributed in eukaryotes and is characterized by a highly conserved C-terminal domain. This family was identified two decades ago in ruminants, but its role(s) remained largely unknown. Investigating cellular functions and mechanism of action of BCNT proteins is challenging, because they have been implicated in human craniofacial development. Recently, we found that YETI, the D. melanogaster BCNT, is a chromatin factor that participates to H2A.V deposition. Here we report the effects of in vivo expression of CFDP1, the human BCNT protein, in Drosophila melanogaster. We show that CFDP1, similarly to YETI, binds to chromatin and its expression results in a wide range of abnormalities highly reminiscent of those observed in Yeti null mutants. This indicates that CFDP1 expressed in flies behaves in a dominant negative fashion disrupting the YETI function. Moreover, GST pull-down provides evidence indicating that 1) both YETI and CFDP1 undergo homodimerization and 2) YETI and CFDP1 physically interact each other by forming inactive heterodimers that would trigger the observed dominant-negative effect. Overall, our findings highlight unanticipated evidences suggesting that homodimerization mediated by the BCNT domain is integral to the chromatin functions of BCNT proteins. PMID:27151176

  16. Profiling of proteolytic enzymes in the gut of the tick Ixodes ricinus reveals an evolutionarily conserved network of aspartic and cysteine peptidases

    PubMed Central

    Sojka, Daniel; Franta, Zdeněk; Horn, Martin; Hajdušek, Ondřej; Caffrey, Conor R; Mareš, Michael; Kopáček, Petr

    2008-01-01

    Background Ticks are vectors for a variety of viral, bacterial and parasitic diseases in human and domestic animals. To survive and reproduce ticks feed on host blood, yet our understanding of the intestinal proteolytic machinery used to derive absorbable nutrients from the blood meal is poor. Intestinal digestive processes are limiting factors for pathogen transmission since the tick gut presents the primary site of infection. Moreover, digestive enzymes may find practical application as anti-tick vaccine targets. Results Using the hard tick, Ixodes ricinus, we performed a functional activity scan of the peptidase complement in gut tissue extracts that demonstrated the presence of five types of peptidases of the cysteine and aspartic classes. We followed up with genetic screens of gut-derived cDNA to identify and clone genes encoding the cysteine peptidases cathepsins B, L and C, an asparaginyl endopeptidase (legumain), and the aspartic peptidase, cathepsin D. By RT-PCR, expression of asparaginyl endopeptidase and cathepsins B and D was restricted to gut tissue and to those developmental stages feeding on blood. Conclusion Overall, our results demonstrate the presence of a network of cysteine and aspartic peptidases that conceivably operates to digest host blood proteins in a concerted manner. Significantly, the peptidase components of this digestive network are orthologous to those described in other parasites, including nematodes and flatworms. Accordingly, the present data and those available for other tick species support the notion of an evolutionary conservation of a cysteine/aspartic peptidase system for digestion that includes ticks, but differs from that of insects relying on serine peptidases. PMID:18348719

  17. Exploitation of evolutionarily conserved amoeba and mammalian processes by Legionella.

    PubMed

    Al-Quadan, Tasneem; Price, Christopher T; Abu Kwaik, Yousef

    2012-06-01

    Legionella pneumophila proliferates within various protists and metazoan cells, where a cadre of ∼300 effectors is injected into the host cell by the defect in organelle trafficking/intracellular multiplication (Dot/Icm) type IVB translocation system. Interkingdom horizontal gene transfer of genes of protists and their subsequent convergent evolution to become translocated effectors has probably enabled L. pneumophila to adapt to the intracellular life within various protists and metazoan cells through exploitation of evolutionarily eukaryotic processes, such as endoplasmic reticulum-to-Golgi vesicle traffic, phosphoinositol metabolism, AMPylation, deAMPylation, prenylation, polyubiquitination, proteasomal degradation and cytosolic amino- and oligo-peptidases. This is highlighted by the ankyrin B (AnkB) F-box effector that exploits multiple conserved eukaryotic machineries to generate high levels of free amino acids as sources of carbon and energy essential for intracellular proliferation in protists and metazoan cells and for manifestation of pulmonary disease in mammals.

  18. Evolutionarily conserved regulation of hypocretin neuron specification by Lhx9.

    PubMed

    Liu, Justin; Merkle, Florian T; Gandhi, Avni V; Gagnon, James A; Woods, Ian G; Chiu, Cindy N; Shimogori, Tomomi; Schier, Alexander F; Prober, David A

    2015-03-15

    Loss of neurons that express the neuropeptide hypocretin (Hcrt) has been implicated in narcolepsy, a debilitating disorder characterized by excessive daytime sleepiness and cataplexy. Cell replacement therapy, using Hcrt-expressing neurons generated in vitro, is a potentially useful therapeutic approach, but factors sufficient to specify Hcrt neurons are unknown. Using zebrafish as a high-throughput system to screen for factors that can specify Hcrt neurons in vivo, we identified the LIM homeobox transcription factor Lhx9 as necessary and sufficient to specify Hcrt neurons. We found that Lhx9 can directly induce hcrt expression and we identified two potential Lhx9 binding sites in the zebrafish hcrt promoter. Akin to its function in zebrafish, we found that Lhx9 is sufficient to specify Hcrt-expressing neurons in the developing mouse hypothalamus. Our results elucidate an evolutionarily conserved role for Lhx9 in Hcrt neuron specification that improves our understanding of Hcrt neuron development.

  19. Localization of an evolutionarily conserved protein proton pyrophosphatase in evolutionarily distant plants oryza sativa and physcomitrella patens

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Proton Pyrophosphatase (H+-PPase) is a highly evolutionarily conserved protein that is prevalent in the plant kingdom. One of the salient features of H+-PPase expression pattern, at least in vascular plants like Arabidopsis, is its conspicuous localization in both actively dividing cells and the phl...

  20. A novel evolutionarily conserved domain of cell-adhesion GPCRs mediates autoproteolysis

    PubMed Central

    Araç, Demet; Boucard, Antony A; Bolliger, Marc F; Nguyen, Jenna; Soltis, S Michael; Südhof, Thomas C; Brunger, Axel T

    2012-01-01

    The G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) Proteolysis Site (GPS) of cell-adhesion GPCRs and polycystic kidney disease (PKD) proteins constitutes a highly conserved autoproteolysis sequence, but its catalytic mechanism remains unknown. Here, we show that unexpectedly the ∼40-residue GPS motif represents an integral part of a much larger ∼320-residue domain that we termed GPCR-Autoproteolysis INducing (GAIN) domain. Crystal structures of GAIN domains from two distantly related cell-adhesion GPCRs revealed a conserved novel fold in which the GPS motif forms five β-strands that are tightly integrated into the overall GAIN domain. The GAIN domain is evolutionarily conserved from tetrahymena to mammals, is the only extracellular domain shared by all human cell-adhesion GPCRs and PKD proteins, and is the locus of multiple human disease mutations. Functionally, the GAIN domain is both necessary and sufficient for autoproteolysis, suggesting an autoproteolytic mechanism whereby the overall GAIN domain fine-tunes the chemical environment in the GPS to catalyse peptide bond hydrolysis. Thus, the GAIN domain embodies a unique, evolutionarily ancient and widespread autoproteolytic fold whose function is likely relevant for GPCR signalling and for multiple human diseases. PMID:22333914

  1. An evolutionarily conserved NPC subcomplex, which redistributes in part to kinetochores in mammalian cells

    PubMed Central

    Belgareh, Naïma; Rabut, Gwénaël; Baï, Siau Wei; van Overbeek, Megan; Beaudouin, Joël; Daigle, Nathalie; Zatsepina, Olga V.; Pasteau, Fabien; Labas, Valérie; Fromont-Racine, Micheline; Ellenberg, Jan; Doye, Valérie

    2001-01-01

    The nuclear pore complexes (NPCs) are evolutionarily conserved assemblies that allow traffic between the cytoplasm and the nucleus. In this study, we have identified and characterized a novel human nuclear pore protein, hNup133, through its homology with the Saccharomyces cerevisiae nucleoporin scNup133. Two-hybrid screens and immunoprecipitation experiments revealed a direct and evolutionarily conserved interaction between Nup133 and Nup84/Nup107 and indicated that hNup133 and hNup107 are part of a NPC subcomplex that contains two other nucleoporins (the previously characterized hNup96 and a novel nucleoporin designated as hNup120) homologous to constituents of the scNup84 subcomplex. We further demonstrate that hNup133 and hNup107 are localized on both sides of the NPC to which they are stably associated at interphase, remain associated as part of a NPC subcomplex during mitosis, and are targeted at early stages to the reforming nuclear envelope. Throughout mitosis, a fraction of hNup133 and hNup107 localizes to the kinetochores, thus revealing an unexpected connection between structural NPCs constituents and kinetochores. Photobleaching experiments further showed that the mitotic cytoplasm contains kinetochore-binding competent hNup133 molecules and that in contrast to its stable association with the NPCs the interaction of this nucleoporin with kinetochores is dynamic. PMID:11564755

  2. Automatic annotation of experimentally derived, evolutionarily conserved post-translational modifications onto multiple genomes.

    PubMed

    Sridhara, Viswanadham; Marchler-Bauer, Aron; Bryant, Stephen H; Geer, Lewis Y

    2011-01-01

    New generation sequencing technologies have resulted in significant increases in the number of complete genomes. Functional characterization of these genomes, such as by high-throughput proteomics, is an important but challenging task due to the difficulty of scaling up existing experimental techniques. By use of comparative genomics techniques, experimental results can be transferred from one genome to another, while at the same time minimizing errors by requiring discovery in multiple genomes. In this study, protein phosphorylation, an essential component of many cellular processes, is studied using data from large-scale proteomics analyses of the phosphoproteome. Phosphorylation sites from Homo sapiens, Mus musculus and Drosophila melanogaster phosphopeptide data sets were mapped onto conserved domains in NCBI's manually curated portion of Conserved Domain Database (CDD). In this subset, 25 phosphorylation sites are found to be evolutionarily conserved between the three species studied. Transfer of phosphorylation annotation of these conserved sites onto sequences sharing the same conserved domains yield 3253 phosphosite annotations for proteins from coelomata, the taxonomic division that spans H. sapiens, M. musculus and D. melanogaster. The method scales automatically, so as the amount of experimental phosphoproteomics data increases, more conserved phosphorylation sites may be revealed.

  3. Evolutionarily conserved substrate substructures for automated annotation of enzyme superfamilies.

    PubMed

    Chiang, Ranyee A; Sali, Andrej; Babbitt, Patricia C

    2008-08-01

    The evolution of enzymes affects how well a species can adapt to new environmental conditions. During enzyme evolution, certain aspects of molecular function are conserved while other aspects can vary. Aspects of function that are more difficult to change or that need to be reused in multiple contexts are often conserved, while those that vary may indicate functions that are more easily changed or that are no longer required. In analogy to the study of conservation patterns in enzyme sequences and structures, we have examined the patterns of conservation and variation in enzyme function by analyzing graph isomorphisms among enzyme substrates of a large number of enzyme superfamilies. This systematic analysis of substrate substructures establishes the conservation patterns that typify individual superfamilies. Specifically, we determined the chemical substructures that are conserved among all known substrates of a superfamily and the substructures that are reacting in these substrates and then examined the relationship between the two. Across the 42 superfamilies that were analyzed, substantial variation was found in how much of the conserved substructure is reacting, suggesting that superfamilies may not be easily grouped into discrete and separable categories. Instead, our results suggest that many superfamilies may need to be treated individually for analyses of evolution, function prediction, and guiding enzyme engineering strategies. Annotating superfamilies with these conserved and reacting substructure patterns provides information that is orthogonal to information provided by studies of conservation in superfamily sequences and structures, thereby improving the precision with which we can predict the functions of enzymes of unknown function and direct studies in enzyme engineering. Because the method is automated, it is suitable for large-scale characterization and comparison of fundamental functional capabilities of both characterized and uncharacterized

  4. Of flies, mice, and men: evolutionarily conserved tissue damage responses and aging.

    PubMed

    Neves, Joana; Demaria, Marco; Campisi, Judith; Jasper, Heinrich

    2015-01-12

    Studies in flies, mice, and human models have provided a conceptual framework for how paracrine interactions between damaged cells and the surrounding tissue control tissue repair. These studies have amassed evidence for an evolutionarily conserved secretory program that regulates tissue homeostasis. This program coordinates cell survival and proliferation during tissue regeneration and repair in young animals. By virtue of chronic engagement, however, it also contributes to the age-related decline of tissue homeostasis leading to degeneration, metabolic dysfunction, and cancer. Here, we review recent studies that shed light on the nature and regulation of this evolutionarily conserved secretory program.

  5. Oncogenic effects of evolutionarily conserved noncoding RNA ECONEXIN on gliomagenesis.

    PubMed

    Deguchi, S; Katsushima, K; Hatanaka, A; Shinjo, K; Ohka, F; Wakabayashi, T; Zong, H; Natsume, A; Kondo, Y

    2017-04-03

    Accumulating studies have demonstrated the importance of long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) during oncogenic transformation. However, because most lncRNAs are currently uncharacterized, the identification of novel oncogenic lncRNAs is difficult. Given that intergenic lncRNA have substantially less sequence conservation patterns than protein-coding genes across species, evolutionary conserved intergenic lncRNAs are likely to be functional. The current study identified a novel intergenic lncRNA, LINC00461 (ECONEXIN) using a combined approach consisting of searching lncRNAs by evolutionary conservation and validating their expression in a glioma mouse model. ECONEXIN was the most highly conserved intergenic lncRNA containing 83.0% homology with the mouse ortholog (C130071C03Rik) for a region over 2500 bp in length within its exon 3. Expressions of ECONEXIN and C130071C03Rik were significantly upregulated in both human and mouse glioma tissues. Moreover, the expression of C130071C03Rik was upregulated even in precancerous conditions and markedly increased during glioma progression. Functional analysis of ECONEXIN in glioma cell lines, U87 and U251, showed it was dominantly located in the cytoplasm and interacted with miR-411-5p via two binding sites within ECONEXIN. Inhibition of ECONEXIN upregulated miR-411-5p together with the downregulation of its target, Topoisomerase 2 alpha (TOP2A), in glioma cell lines, resulting in decreased cell proliferation. Our data demonstrated that ECONEXIN is a potential oncogene that regulates TOP2A by sponging miR-411-5p in glioma. In addition, our investigative approaches to identify conserved lncRNA and their molecular characterization by validation in mouse tumor models may be useful to functionally annotate novel lncRNAs, especially cancer-associated lncRNAs.Oncogene advance online publication, 3 April 2017; doi:10.1038/onc.2017.88.

  6. Evolutionarily conserved linkage between enzyme fold, flexibility, and catalysis

    SciTech Connect

    Ramanathan, Arvind; Agarwal, Pratul K

    2011-01-01

    Proteins are intrinsically flexible molecules. The role of internal motions in a protein's designated function is widely debated. The role of protein structure in enzyme catalysis is well established, and conservation of structural features provides vital clues to their role in function. Recently, it has been proposed that the protein function may involve multiple conformations: the observed deviations are not random thermodynamic fluctuations; rather, flexibility may be closely linked to protein function, including enzyme catalysis. We hypothesize that the argument of conservation of important structural features can also be extended to identification of protein flexibility in interconnection with enzyme function. Three classes of enzymes (prolyl-peptidyl isomerase, oxidoreductase, and nuclease) that catalyze diverse chemical reactions have been examined using detailed computational modeling. For each class, the identification and characterization of the internal protein motions coupled to the chemical step in enzyme mechanisms in multiple species show identical enzyme conformational fluctuations. In addition to the active-site residues, motions of protein surface loop regions (>10 away) are observed to be identical across species, and networks of conserved interactions/residues connect these highly flexible surface regions to the active-site residues that make direct contact with substrates. More interestingly, examination of reaction-coupled motions in non-homologous enzyme systems (with no structural or sequence similarity) that catalyze the same biochemical reaction shows motions that induce remarkably similar changes in the enzyme substrate interactions during catalysis. The results indicate that the reaction-coupled flexibility is a conserved aspect of the enzyme molecular architecture. Protein motions in distal areas of homologous and non-homologous enzyme systems mediate similar changes in the active-site enzyme substrate interactions, thereby impacting

  7. Evolutionarily conserved linkage between enzyme fold, flexibility, and catalysis.

    PubMed

    Ramanathan, Arvind; Agarwal, Pratul K

    2011-11-01

    Proteins are intrinsically flexible molecules. The role of internal motions in a protein's designated function is widely debated. The role of protein structure in enzyme catalysis is well established, and conservation of structural features provides vital clues to their role in function. Recently, it has been proposed that the protein function may involve multiple conformations: the observed deviations are not random thermodynamic fluctuations; rather, flexibility may be closely linked to protein function, including enzyme catalysis. We hypothesize that the argument of conservation of important structural features can also be extended to identification of protein flexibility in interconnection with enzyme function. Three classes of enzymes (prolyl-peptidyl isomerase, oxidoreductase, and nuclease) that catalyze diverse chemical reactions have been examined using detailed computational modeling. For each class, the identification and characterization of the internal protein motions coupled to the chemical step in enzyme mechanisms in multiple species show identical enzyme conformational fluctuations. In addition to the active-site residues, motions of protein surface loop regions (>10 Å away) are observed to be identical across species, and networks of conserved interactions/residues connect these highly flexible surface regions to the active-site residues that make direct contact with substrates. More interestingly, examination of reaction-coupled motions in non-homologous enzyme systems (with no structural or sequence similarity) that catalyze the same biochemical reaction shows motions that induce remarkably similar changes in the enzyme-substrate interactions during catalysis. The results indicate that the reaction-coupled flexibility is a conserved aspect of the enzyme molecular architecture. Protein motions in distal areas of homologous and non-homologous enzyme systems mediate similar changes in the active-site enzyme-substrate interactions, thereby impacting

  8. Prediction of evolutionarily conserved interologs in Mus musculus

    PubMed Central

    Yellaboina, Sailu; Dudekula, Dawood B; Ko, Minoru SH

    2008-01-01

    Background Identification of protein-protein interactions is an important first step to understand living systems. High-throughput experimental approaches have accumulated large amount of information on protein-protein interactions in human and other model organisms. Such interaction information has been successfully transferred to other species, in which the experimental data are limited. However, the annotation transfer method could yield false positive interologs due to the lack of conservation of interactions when applied to phylogenetically distant organisms. Results To address this issue, we used phylogenetic profile method to filter false positives in interologs based on the notion that evolutionary conserved interactions show similar patterns of occurrence along the genomes. The approach was applied to Mus musculus, in which the experimentally identified interactions are limited. We first inferred the protein-protein interactions in Mus musculus by using two approaches: i) identifying mouse orthologs of interacting proteins (interologs) based on the experimental protein-protein interaction data from other organisms; and ii) analyzing frequency of mouse ortholog co-occurrence in predicted operons of bacteria. We then filtered possible false-positives in the predicted interactions using the phylogenetic profiles. We found that this filtering method significantly increased the frequency of interacting protein-pairs coexpressed in the same cells/tissues in gene expression omnibus (GEO) database as well as the frequency of interacting protein-pairs shared the similar Gene Ontology (GO) terms for biological processes and cellular localizations. The data supports the notion that phylogenetic profile helps to reduce the number of false positives in interologs. Conclusion We have developed protein-protein interaction database in mouse, which contains 41109 interologs. We have also developed a web interface to facilitate the use of database . PMID:18842131

  9. Blue reflectance in tarantulas is evolutionarily conserved despite nanostructural diversity

    PubMed Central

    Hsiung, Bor-Kai; Deheyn, Dimitri D.; Shawkey, Matthew D.; Blackledge, Todd A.

    2015-01-01

    Slight shifts in arrangement within biological photonic nanostructures can produce large color differences, and sexual selection often leads to high color diversity in clades with structural colors. We use phylogenetic reconstruction, electron microscopy, spectrophotometry, and optical modeling to show an opposing pattern of nanostructural diversification accompanied by unusual conservation of blue color in tarantulas (Araneae: Theraphosidae). In contrast to other clades, blue coloration in phylogenetically distant tarantulas peaks within a narrow 20-nm region around 450 nm. Both quasi-ordered and multilayer nanostructures found in different tarantulas produce this blue color. Thus, even within monophyletic lineages, tarantulas have evolved strikingly similar blue coloration through divergent mechanisms. The poor color perception and lack of conspicuous display during courtship of tarantulas argue that these colors are not sexually selected. Therefore, our data contrast with sexual selection that typically produces a diverse array of colors with a single structural mechanism by showing that natural selection on structural color in tarantulas resulted in convergence on similar color through diverse structural mechanisms. PMID:26702433

  10. Blue reflectance in tarantulas is evolutionarily conserved despite nanostructural diversity.

    PubMed

    Hsiung, Bor-Kai; Deheyn, Dimitri D; Shawkey, Matthew D; Blackledge, Todd A

    2015-11-01

    Slight shifts in arrangement within biological photonic nanostructures can produce large color differences, and sexual selection often leads to high color diversity in clades with structural colors. We use phylogenetic reconstruction, electron microscopy, spectrophotometry, and optical modeling to show an opposing pattern of nanostructural diversification accompanied by unusual conservation of blue color in tarantulas (Araneae: Theraphosidae). In contrast to other clades, blue coloration in phylogenetically distant tarantulas peaks within a narrow 20-nm region around 450 nm. Both quasi-ordered and multilayer nanostructures found in different tarantulas produce this blue color. Thus, even within monophyletic lineages, tarantulas have evolved strikingly similar blue coloration through divergent mechanisms. The poor color perception and lack of conspicuous display during courtship of tarantulas argue that these colors are not sexually selected. Therefore, our data contrast with sexual selection that typically produces a diverse array of colors with a single structural mechanism by showing that natural selection on structural color in tarantulas resulted in convergence on similar color through diverse structural mechanisms.

  11. Evolutionarily distinct bacteriophage endolysins featuring conserved peptidoglycan cleavage sites protect mice from MRSA infection

    PubMed Central

    Schmelcher, Mathias; Shen, Yang; Nelson, Daniel C.; Eugster, Marcel R.; Eichenseher, Fritz; Hanke, Daniela C.; Loessner, Martin J.; Dong, Shengli; Pritchard, David G.; Lee, Jean C.; Becker, Stephen C.; Foster-Frey, Juli; Donovan, David M.

    2015-01-01

    Objectives In the light of increasing drug resistance in Staphylococcus aureus, bacteriophage endolysins [peptidoglycan hydrolases (PGHs)] have been suggested as promising antimicrobial agents. The aim of this study was to determine the antimicrobial activity of nine enzymes representing unique homology groups within a diverse class of staphylococcal PGHs. Methods PGHs were recombinantly expressed, purified and tested for staphylolytic activity in multiple in vitro assays (zymogram, turbidity reduction assay and plate lysis) and against a comprehensive set of strains (S. aureus and CoNS). PGH cut sites in the staphylococcal peptidoglycan were determined by biochemical assays (Park–Johnson and Ghuysen procedures) and MS analysis. The enzymes were tested for their ability to eradicate static S. aureus biofilms and compared for their efficacy against systemic MRSA infection in a mouse model. Results Despite similar modular architectures and unexpectedly conserved cleavage sites in the peptidoglycan (conferred by evolutionarily divergent catalytic domains), the enzymes displayed varying degrees of in vitro lytic activity against numerous staphylococcal strains, including cell surface mutants and drug-resistant strains, and proved effective against static biofilms. In a mouse model of systemic MRSA infection, six PGHs provided 100% protection from death, with animals being free of clinical signs at the end of the experiment. Conclusions Our results corroborate the high potential of PGHs for treatment of S. aureus infections and reveal unique antimicrobial and biochemical properties of the different enzymes, suggesting a high diversity of potential applications despite highly conserved peptidoglycan target sites. PMID:25630640

  12. Evolutionarily conserved and nonconserved cellular localizations and functions of human SIRT proteins.

    PubMed

    Michishita, Eriko; Park, Jean Y; Burneskis, Jenna M; Barrett, J Carl; Horikawa, Izumi

    2005-10-01

    Sir2 is a NAD+-dependent protein deacetylase that extends lifespan in yeast and worms. This study examines seven human proteins homologous to Sir2 (SIRT1 through SIRT7) for cellular localization, expression profiles, protein deacetylation activity, and effects on human cell lifespan. We found that: 1) three nuclear SIRT proteins (SIRT1, SIRT6, and SIRT7) show different subnuclear localizations: SIRT6 and SIRT7 are associated with heterochromatic regions and nucleoli, respectively, where yeast Sir2 functions; 2) SIRT3, SIRT4, and SIRT5 are localized in mitochondria, an organelle that links aging and energy metabolism; 3) cellular p53 is a major in vivo substrate of SIRT1 deacetylase, but not the other six SIRT proteins; 4) SIRT1, but not the other two nuclear SIRT proteins, shows an in vitro deacetylase activity on histone H4 and p53 peptides; and 5) overexpression of any one of the seven SIRT proteins does not extend cellular replicative lifespan in normal human fibroblasts or prostate epithelial cells. This study supports the notion that multiple human SIRT proteins have evolutionarily conserved and nonconserved functions at different cellular locations and reveals that the lifespan of normal human cells, in contrast to that of lower eukaryotes, cannot be manipulated by increased expression of a single SIRT protein.

  13. Evolutionarily conserved mechanisms for the selection and maintenance of behavioural activity

    PubMed Central

    Fiore, Vincenzo G.; Dolan, Raymond J.; Strausfeld, Nicholas J.; Hirth, Frank

    2015-01-01

    Survival and reproduction entail the selection of adaptive behavioural repertoires. This selection manifests as phylogenetically acquired activities that depend on evolved nervous system circuitries. Lorenz and Tinbergen already postulated that heritable behaviours and their reliable performance are specified by genetically determined programs. Here we compare the functional anatomy of the insect central complex and vertebrate basal ganglia to illustrate their role in mediating selection and maintenance of adaptive behaviours. Comparative analyses reveal that central complex and basal ganglia circuitries share comparable lineage relationships within clusters of functionally integrated neurons. These clusters are specified by genetic mechanisms that link birth time and order to their neuronal identities and functions. Their subsequent connections and associated functions are characterized by similar mechanisms that implement dimensionality reduction and transition through attractor states, whereby spatially organized parallel-projecting loops integrate and convey sensorimotor representations that select and maintain behavioural activity. In both taxa, these neural systems are modulated by dopamine signalling that also mediates memory-like processes. The multiplicity of similarities between central complex and basal ganglia suggests evolutionarily conserved computational mechanisms for action selection. We speculate that these may have originated from ancestral ground pattern circuitries present in the brain of the last common ancestor of insects and vertebrates. PMID:26554043

  14. An evolutionarily conserved gene, FUWA, plays a role in determining panicle architecture, grain shape and grain weight in rice.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jun; Gao, He; Zheng, Xiao-Ming; Jin, Mingna; Weng, Jian-Feng; Ma, Jin; Ren, Yulong; Zhou, Kunneng; Wang, Qi; Wang, Jie; Wang, Jiu-Lin; Zhang, Xin; Cheng, Zhijun; Wu, Chuanyin; Wang, Haiyang; Wan, Jian-Min

    2015-08-01

    Plant breeding relies on creation of novel allelic combinations for desired traits. Identification and utilization of beneficial alleles, rare alleles and evolutionarily conserved genes in the germplasm (referred to as 'hidden' genes) provide an effective approach to achieve this goal. Here we show that a chemically induced null mutation in an evolutionarily conserved gene, FUWA, alters multiple important agronomic traits in rice, including panicle architecture, grain shape and grain weight. FUWA encodes an NHL domain-containing protein, with preferential expression in the root meristem, shoot apical meristem and inflorescences, where it restricts excessive cell division. Sequence analysis revealed that FUWA has undergone a bottleneck effect, and become fixed in landraces and modern cultivars during domestication and breeding. We further confirm a highly conserved role of FUWA homologs in determining panicle architecture and grain development in rice, maize and sorghum through genetic transformation. Strikingly, knockdown of the FUWA transcription level by RNA interference results in an erect panicle and increased grain size in both indica and japonica genetic backgrounds. This study illustrates an approach to create new germplasm with improved agronomic traits for crop breeding by tapping into evolutionary conserved genes.

  15. Moonlighting glycolytic protein glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAPDH): an evolutionarily conserved plasminogen receptor on mammalian cells.

    PubMed

    Chauhan, Anoop Singh; Kumar, Manoj; Chaudhary, Surbhi; Patidar, Anil; Dhiman, Asmita; Sheokand, Navdeep; Malhotra, Himanshu; Raje, Chaaya Iyengar; Raje, Manoj

    2017-03-15

    Prokaryotic pathogens establish infection in mammals by capturing the proteolytic enzyme plasminogen (Plg) onto their surface to digest host extracellular matrix (ECM). One of the bacterial surface Plg receptors is the multifunctional glycolytic enzyme glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAPDH). In a defensive response, the host mounts an inflammatory response, which involves infiltration of leukocytes to sites of inflammation. This requires macrophage exit from the blood and migration across basement membranes, a phenomenon dependent on proteolytic remodeling of the ECM utilizing Plg. The ability of Plg to facilitate inflammatory cell recruitment critically depends on receptors on the surface of phagocyte cells. Utilizing a combination of biochemical, cellular, knockdown, and in vivo approaches, we demonstrated that upon inflammation, macrophages recruit GAPDH onto their surface to carry out the same task of capturing Plg to digest ECM to aid rapid phagocyte migration and combat the invading pathogens. We propose that GAPDH is an ancient, evolutionarily conserved receptor that plays a key role in the Plg-dependent regulation of macrophage recruitment in the inflammatory response to microbial aggression, thus pitting prokaryotic GAPDH against mammalian GAPDH, with both involved in a conserved role of Plg activation on the surface of their respective cells, to conflicting ends.-Chauhan, A. S., Kumar, M., Chaudhary, S., Patidar, A., Dhiman, A., Sheokand, N., Malhotra, H., Raje, C. I., Raje, M. Moonlighting glycolytic protein glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GAPDH): an evolutionarily conserved plasminogen receptor on mammalian cells.

  16. Moonlighting activity of presenilin in plants is independent of γ-secretase and evolutionarily conserved

    PubMed Central

    Khandelwal, Abha; Chandu, Dilip; Roe, Catherine M.; Kopan, Raphael; Quatrano, Ralph S.

    2007-01-01

    Presenilins (PS) provide the catalytic activity for γ-secretase, which cleaves physiologically relevant substrates including Notch, ErbB4, and APP. Recent genetic studies indicated that the contribution of PS1 to mouse development includes γ-secretase-independent functions that cannot be easily explained by any of the demonstrated or hypothesized functions of this protein. To begin a nonbiased analysis of PS1 activity unencumbered by the dominant effect stemming from loss of Notch function, we characterized PS functions in the early land plant Physcomitrella patens, which lacks Notch, ErbB4, and APP. Removal of P. patens PS resulted in phenotypic abnormalities. Further assays performed to delineate the defective pathways in PS-deficient P. patens implicated improper function of the cytoskeletal network. Importantly, this characterization of a nonmetazoan PS uncovered a previously undescribed, evolutionarily conserved function (human PS1 can rescue the growth and light responses) that is γ-secretase-independent (mutants with substitutions of the catalytic aspartyl residues retain the activity). Introduction of PpPS into PS-deficient mouse embryonic fibroblasts rescues normal growth rates, demonstrating that at least some metazoan functions of PS are evolutionarily conserved. PMID:17684101

  17. An evolutionarily conserved Rit GTPase–p38 MAPK signaling pathway mediates oxidative stress resistance

    PubMed Central

    Cai, Weikang; Rudolph, Jennifer L.; Harrison, Susan M. W.; Jin, Ling; Frantz, Aubrey L.; Harrison, Douglas A.; Andres, Douglas A.

    2011-01-01

    Ras-related small GTP-binding proteins control a wide range of cellular processes by regulating a variety of effector pathways, including prominent roles in the control of mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) cascades. Although the regulatory role(s) for many Ras family GTPases are well established, the physiological function for the Rit/Rin subfamily has been lacking. Here, using both knockout mice and Drosophila models, we demonstrate an evolutionarily conserved role for Rit subfamily GTPases (mammalian Rit and Rin, and the Drosophila RIC homologue) in governing survival in response to oxidative stress. Primary embryonic fibroblasts derived from Rit knockout mice display increased apoptosis and selective disruption of MAPK signaling following reactive oxygen species (ROS) exposure but not in response to endoplasmic reticulum stress or DNA damage. These deficits include a reduction in ROS-mediated stimulation of a p38-MK2-HSP27 signaling cascade that controls Akt activation, directing Bad phosphorylation to promote cell survival. Furthermore, D-RIC null flies display increased susceptibility to environmental stresses and reduced stress-dependent p38 signaling, extending the Rit-p38 survival pathway to Drosophila. Together, our studies establish the Rit GTPases as critical regulators of an evolutionarily conserved, p38 MAPK–dependent signaling cascade that functions as an important survival mechanism for cells in response to oxidative stress. PMID:21737674

  18. Rbfox proteins regulate alternative mRNA splicing through evolutionarily conserved RNA bridges

    PubMed Central

    Lovci, Michael T; Ghanem, Dana; Marr, Henry; Arnold, Justin; Gee, Sherry; Parra, Marilyn; Liang, Tiffany Y; Stark, Thomas J; Gehman, Lauren T; Hoon, Shawn; Massirer, Katlin B; Pratt, Gabriel A; Black, Douglas L; Gray, Joe W; Conboy, John G; Yeo, Gene W

    2014-01-01

    Alternative splicing (AS) enables programmed diversity of gene expression across tissues and development. We show here that binding in distal intronic regions (>500 nucleotides (nt) from any exon) by Rbfox splicing factors important in development is extensive and is an active mode of splicing regulation. Similarly to exon-proximal sites, distal sites contain evolutionarily conserved GCATG sequences and are associated with AS activation and repression upon modulation of Rbfox abundance in human and mouse experimental systems. As a proof of principle, we validated the activity of two specific Rbfox enhancers in KIF21A and ENAH distal introns and showed that a conserved long-range RNA-RNA base-pairing interaction (an RNA bridge) is necessary for Rbfox-mediated exon inclusion in the ENAH gene. Thus we demonstrate a previously unknown RNA-mediated mechanism for AS control by distally bound RNA-binding proteins. PMID:24213538

  19. Rbfox proteins regulate alternative mRNA splicing through evolutionarily conserved RNA bridges.

    PubMed

    Lovci, Michael T; Ghanem, Dana; Marr, Henry; Arnold, Justin; Gee, Sherry; Parra, Marilyn; Liang, Tiffany Y; Stark, Thomas J; Gehman, Lauren T; Hoon, Shawn; Massirer, Katlin B; Pratt, Gabriel A; Black, Douglas L; Gray, Joe W; Conboy, John G; Yeo, Gene W

    2013-12-01

    Alternative splicing (AS) enables programmed diversity of gene expression across tissues and development. We show here that binding in distal intronic regions (>500 nucleotides (nt) from any exon) by Rbfox splicing factors important in development is extensive and is an active mode of splicing regulation. Similarly to exon-proximal sites, distal sites contain evolutionarily conserved GCATG sequences and are associated with AS activation and repression upon modulation of Rbfox abundance in human and mouse experimental systems. As a proof of principle, we validated the activity of two specific Rbfox enhancers in KIF21A and ENAH distal introns and showed that a conserved long-range RNA-RNA base-pairing interaction (an RNA bridge) is necessary for Rbfox-mediated exon inclusion in the ENAH gene. Thus we demonstrate a previously unknown RNA-mediated mechanism for AS control by distally bound RNA-binding proteins.

  20. Evolutionarily conserved CLE peptide signaling in plant development, symbiosis, and parasitism.

    PubMed

    Miyawaki, Kaori; Tabata, Ryo; Sawa, Shinichiro

    2013-10-01

    Small polypeptides are widely used as signaling molecules in cell-to-cell communication in animals and plants. The CLAVATA3/EMBRYO SURROUNDING REGION-RELATED (CLE) gene family is composed of numerous genes that contain conserved CLE domains in various plant species and plant-parasitic nematodes. Here, we review recent progress in our understanding of CLE signaling during stem cell maintenance in Arabidopsis and grasses. We also summarize the roles of CLE signaling in the legume-Rhizobium symbiosis and infection by plant-parasitic nematodes. CLE signaling is important for diverse aspects of cell-to-cell signaling and long-distance communication, which are critical for survival, and the basic components of the CLE signaling pathway are evolutionarily conserved in both plants and animals.

  1. Nuclear autophagy: An evolutionarily conserved mechanism of nuclear degradation in the cytoplasm.

    PubMed

    Luo, Majing; Zhao, Xueya; Song, Ying; Cheng, Hanhua; Zhou, Rongjia

    2016-11-01

    Macroautophagy/autophagy is a catabolic process that is essential for cellular homeostasis. Studies on autophagic degradation of cytoplasmic components have generated interest in nuclear autophagy. Although its mechanisms and roles have remained elusive, tremendous progress has been made toward understanding nuclear autophagy. Nuclear autophagy is evolutionarily conserved in eukaryotes that may target various nuclear components through a series of processes, including nuclear sensing, nuclear export, autophagic substrate encapsulation and autophagic degradation in the cytoplasm. However, the molecular processes and regulatory mechanisms involved in nuclear autophagy remain largely unknown. Numerous studies have highlighted the importance of nuclear autophagy in physiological and pathological processes such as cancer. This review focuses on current advances in nuclear autophagy and provides a summary of its research history and landmark discoveries to offer new perspectives.

  2. Development and Organization of the Evolutionarily Conserved Three-Layered Olfactory Cortex

    PubMed Central

    2017-01-01

    Abstract The olfactory cortex is part of the mammalian cerebral cortex together with the neocortex and the hippocampus. It receives direct input from the olfactory bulbs and participates in odor discrimination, association, and learning (Bekkers and Suzuki, 2013). It is thought to be an evolutionarily conserved paleocortex, which shares common characteristics with the three-layered general cortex of reptiles (Aboitiz et al., 2002). The olfactory cortex has been studied as a “simple model” to address sensory processing, though little is known about its precise cell origin, diversity, and identity. While the development and the cellular diversity of the six-layered neocortex are increasingly understood, the olfactory cortex remains poorly documented in these aspects. Here is a review of current knowledge of the development and organization of the olfactory cortex, keeping the analogy with those of the neocortex. The comparison of olfactory cortex and neocortex will allow the opening of evolutionary perspectives on cortical development. PMID:28144624

  3. EAG2 potassium channel with evolutionarily conserved function as a brain tumor target

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Xi; He, Ye; Dubuc, Adrian M.; Hashizume, Rintaro; Zhang, Wei; Reimand, Jüri; Yang, Huanghe; Wang, Tongfei A.; Stehbens, Samantha J.; Younger, Susan; Barshow, Suzanne; Zhu, Sijun; Cooper, Michael K.; Peacock, John; Ramaswamy, Vijay; Garzia, Livia; Wu, Xiaochong; Remke, Marc; Forester, Craig M.; Kim, Charles C.; Weiss, William A.; James, C. David; Shuman, Marc A.; Bader, Gary D.; Mueller, Sabine; Taylor, Michael D.; Jan, Yuh Nung; Jan, Lily Yeh

    2015-01-01

    Over 20% of the drugs for treating human diseases target ion channels, however, no cancer drug approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is intended to target an ion channel. Here, we demonstrate the evolutionarily conserved function of EAG2 potassium channel in promoting brain tumor growth and metastasis, delineate downstream pathways and uncover a mechanism for different potassium channels to functionally corporate and regulate mitotic cell volume and tumor progression. We show that EAG2 potassium channel is enriched at the trailing edge of migrating MB cells to regulate local cell volume dynamics, thereby facilitating cell motility. We identify the FDA-approved antipsychotic drug thioridazine as an EAG2 channel blocker that reduces xenografted MB growth and metastasis, and present a case report of repurposing thioridazine for treating a human patient. Our findings thus illustrate the potential of targeting ion channels in cancer treatment. PMID:26258683

  4. Evolutionarily conserved coupling of adaptive and excitable networks mediates eukaryotic chemotaxis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tang, Ming; Wang, Mingjie; Shi, Changji; Iglesias, Pablo A.; Devreotes, Peter N.; Huang, Chuan-Hsiang

    2014-10-01

    Numerous models explain how cells sense and migrate towards shallow chemoattractant gradients. Studies show that an excitable signal transduction network acts as a pacemaker that controls the cytoskeleton to drive motility. Here we show that this network is required to link stimuli to actin polymerization and chemotactic motility and we distinguish the various models of chemotaxis. First, signalling activity is suppressed towards the low side in a gradient or following removal of uniform chemoattractant. Second, signalling activities display a rapid shut off and a slower adaptation during which responsiveness to subsequent test stimuli decline. Simulations of various models indicate that these properties require coupled adaptive and excitable networks. Adaptation involves a G-protein-independent inhibitor, as stimulation of cells lacking G-protein function suppresses basal activities. The salient features of the coupled networks were observed for different chemoattractants in Dictyostelium and in human neutrophils, suggesting an evolutionarily conserved mechanism for eukaryotic chemotaxis.

  5. Human growth is associated with distinct patterns of gene expression in evolutionarily conserved networks

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background A co-ordinated tissue-independent gene expression profile associated with growth is present in rodent models and this is hypothesised to extend to all mammals. Growth in humans has similarities to other mammals but the return to active long bone growth in the pubertal growth spurt is a distinctly human growth event. The aim of this study was to describe gene expression and biological pathways associated with stages of growth in children and to assess tissue-independent expression patterns in relation to human growth. Results We conducted gene expression analysis on a library of datasets from normal children with age annotation, collated from the NCBI Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO) and EBI Arrayexpress databases. A primary data set was generated using cells of lymphoid origin from normal children; the expression of 688 genes (ANOVA false discovery rate modified p-value, q < 0.1) was associated with age, and subsets of these genes formed clusters that correlated with the phases of growth – infancy, childhood, puberty and final height. Network analysis on these clusters identified evolutionarily conserved growth pathways (NOTCH, VEGF, TGFB, WNT and glucocorticoid receptor – Hyper-geometric test, q < 0.05). The greatest degree of network ‘connectivity’ and hence functional significance was present in infancy (Wilcoxon test, p < 0.05), which then decreased through to adulthood. These observations were confirmed in a separate validation data set from lymphoid tissue. Similar biological pathways were observed to be associated with development-related gene expression in other tissues (conjunctival epithelia, temporal lobe brain tissue and bone marrow) suggesting the existence of a tissue-independent genetic program for human growth and maturation. Conclusions Similar evolutionarily conserved pathways have been associated with gene expression and child growth in multiple tissues. These expression profiles associate with the developmental phases

  6. Trichohyalin-like proteins have evolutionarily conserved roles in the morphogenesis of skin appendages.

    PubMed

    Mlitz, Veronika; Strasser, Bettina; Jaeger, Karin; Hermann, Marcela; Ghannadan, Minoo; Buchberger, Maria; Alibardi, Lorenzo; Tschachler, Erwin; Eckhart, Leopold

    2014-11-01

    S100 fused-type proteins (SFTPs) such as filaggrin, trichohyalin, and cornulin are differentially expressed in cornifying keratinocytes of the epidermis and various skin appendages. To determine evolutionarily conserved, and thus presumably important, features of SFTPs, we characterized nonmammalian SFTPs and compared their amino acid sequences and expression patterns with those of mammalian SFTPs. We identified an ortholog of cornulin and a previously unknown SFTP, termed scaffoldin, in reptiles and birds, whereas filaggrin was confined to mammals. In contrast to mammalian SFTPs, both cornulin and scaffoldin of the chicken are expressed in the embryonic periderm. However, scaffoldin resembles mammalian trichohyalin with regard to its expression in the filiform papillae of the tongue and in the epithelium underneath the forming tips of the claws. Furthermore, scaffoldin is expressed in the epithelial sheath around growing feathers, reminiscent of trichohyalin expression in the inner root sheath of hair. The results of this study show that SFTP-positive epithelia function as scaffolds for the growth of diverse skin appendages such as claws, nails, hair, and feathers, indicating a common evolutionary origin.

  7. An evolutionarily conserved mode of modulation of Shaw-like K+ channels

    PubMed Central

    Cotella, Diego; Hernandez-Enriquez, Berenice; Duan, Zhibing; Wu, Xilong; Gazula, Valeswara-Rao; Brown, Maile R.; Kaczmarek, Leonard K.; Sesti, Federico

    2013-01-01

    Voltage-gated K+ channels of the Shaw family (also known as the KCNC or Kv3 family) play pivotal roles in mammalian brains, and genetic or pharmacological disruption of their activities in mice results in a spectrum of behavioral defects. We have used the model system of Caenorhabditis elegans to elucidate conserved molecular mechanisms that regulate these channels. We have now found that the C. elegans Shaw channel KHT-1, and its mammalian homologue, murine Kv3.1b, are both modulated by acid phosphatases. Thus, the C. elegans phosphatase ACP-2 is stably associated with KHT-1, while its mammalian homolog, prostatic acid phosphatase (PAP; also known as ACPP-201) stably associates with murine Kv3.1b K+ channels in vitro and in vivo. In biochemical experiments both phosphatases were able to reverse phosphorylation of their associated channel. The effect of phosphorylation on both channels is to produce a decrease in current amplitude and electrophysiological analyses demonstrated that dephosphorylation reversed the effects of phosphorylation on the magnitude of the macroscopic currents. ACP-2 and KHT-1 were colocalized in the nervous system of C. elegans and, in the mouse nervous system, PAP and Kv3.1b were colocalized in subsets of neurons, including in the brain stem and the ventricular zone. Taken together, this body of evidence suggests that acid phosphatases are general regulatory partners of Shaw-like K+ channels.—Cotella, D., Hernandez-Enriquez, B., Duan, Z., Wu, X., Gazula, V.-R., Brown, M. R., Kaczmarek, L. K., and Sesti, F. An evolutionarily conserved mode of modulation of Shaw-like K+ channels. PMID:23233530

  8. Evolutionarily divergent spliceosomal snRNAs and a conserved non-coding RNA processing motif in Giardia lamblia.

    PubMed

    Hudson, Andrew J; Moore, Ashley N; Elniski, David; Joseph, Joella; Yee, Janet; Russell, Anthony G

    2012-11-01

    Non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs) have diverse essential biological functions in all organisms, and in eukaryotes, two such classes of ncRNAs are the small nucleolar (sno) and small nuclear (sn) RNAs. In this study, we have identified and characterized a collection of sno and snRNAs in Giardia lamblia, by exploiting our discovery of a conserved 12 nt RNA processing sequence motif found in the 3' end regions of a large number of G. lamblia ncRNA genes. RNA end mapping and other experiments indicate the motif serves to mediate ncRNA 3' end formation from mono- and di-cistronic RNA precursor transcripts. Remarkably, we find the motif is also utilized in the processing pathway of all four previously identified trans-spliced G. lamblia introns, revealing a common RNA processing pathway for ncRNAs and trans-spliced introns in this organism. Motif sequence conservation then allowed for the bioinformatic and experimental identification of additional G. lamblia ncRNAs, including new U1 and U6 spliceosomal snRNA candidates. The U6 snRNA candidate was then used as a tool to identity novel U2 and U4 snRNAs, based on predicted phylogenetically conserved snRNA-snRNA base-pairing interactions, from a set of previously identified G. lamblia ncRNAs without assigned function. The Giardia snRNAs retain the core features of spliceosomal snRNAs but are sufficiently evolutionarily divergent to explain the difficulties in their identification. Most intriguingly, all of these snRNAs show structural features diagnostic of U2-dependent/major and U12-dependent/minor spliceosomal snRNAs.

  9. Evolutionarily-conserved prefrontal-amygdalar dysfunction in early-life anxiety

    PubMed Central

    Birn, Rasmus M.; Shackman, Alexander J.; Oler, Jonathan A.; Williams, Lisa E.; McFarlin, Daniel R.; Rogers, Gregory M.; Shelton, Steven E.; Alexander, Andrew L.; Pine, Daniel S.; Slattery, Marcia J.; Davidson, Richard J.; Fox, Andrew S.; Kalin, Ned H.

    2014-01-01

    Some individuals are endowed with a biology that renders them more reactive to novelty and potential threat. When extreme, this anxious temperament (AT) confers elevated risk for the development of anxiety, depression, and substance abuse. These disorders are highly prevalent, debilitating, and can be challenging to treat. The high-risk AT phenotype is expressed similarly in children and young monkeys and mechanistic work demonstrates that the central nucleus (Ce) of the amygdala is an important substrate. While it is widely believed that the flow of information across the structural network connecting the Ce to other brain regions underlies primates' capacity for flexibly regulating anxiety, the functional architecture of this network has remained poorly understood. Here we used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in anesthetized young monkeys and quietly resting children with anxiety disorders to identify an evolutionarily-conserved pattern of functional connectivity relevant to early-life anxiety. Across primate species and levels of awareness, reduced functional connectivity between the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (dlPFC), a region thought to play a central role in the control of cognition and emotion, and the Ce was associated with increased anxiety assessed outside the scanner. Importantly, high-resolution 18-fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (FDG-PET) imaging provided evidence that elevated Ce metabolism statistically mediates the association between prefrontal-amygdalar connectivity and elevated anxiety. These results provide new clues about the brain network underlying extreme early-life anxiety and set the stage for mechanistic work aimed at developing improved interventions for pediatric anxiety. PMID:24863147

  10. The evolutionarily conserved EBR module of RALT/MIG6 mediates suppression of the EGFR catalytic activity.

    PubMed

    Anastasi, S; Baietti, M F; Frosi, Y; Alemà, S; Segatto, O

    2007-12-13

    Physiological signalling by the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) controls developmental processes and tissue homeostasis, whereas aberrant EGFR activity drives oncogenic cell transformation. Under normal conditions, the EGFR must therefore generate outputs of defined strength and duration. To this aim, cells balance EGFR activity via different modalities of negative signalling. Increasing attention is being drawn on transcriptionally controlled feedback inhibitors of EGFR, namely RALT/MIG6, LRIG1, SOCS4 and SOCS5. Genetic studies in mice have revealed the essential role of Ralt/Mig6 in regulating Egfr-driven skin morphogenesis and tumour formation, yet the mechanisms through which RALT abrogates EGFR activity are still undefined. We report that RALT suppresses EGFR function by inhibiting its catalytic activity. The evolutionarily conserved ErbB-binding region (EBR) is necessary and sufficient to carry out RALT-dependent suppression of EGFR kinase activity in vitro and in intact cells. The mechanism involves binding of the EBR to the 953RYLVIQ958 sequence, which is located in the alphaI helix of the EGFR kinase and has been shown to participate in allosteric control of EGFR catalytic activity. Our results uncover a novel mechanism of temporal regulation of EGFR activity in vertebrate organisms.

  11. Evolutionarily Conserved Binding of Translationally Controlled Tumor Protein to Eukaryotic Elongation Factor 1B*

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Huiwen; Gong, Weibin; Yao, Xingzhe; Wang, Jinfeng; Perrett, Sarah; Feng, Yingang

    2015-01-01

    Translationally controlled tumor protein (TCTP) is an abundant protein that is highly conserved in eukaryotes. However, its primary function is still not clear. Human TCTP interacts with the metazoan-specific eukaryotic elongation factor 1Bδ (eEF1Bδ) and inhibits its guanine nucleotide exchange factor (GEF) activity, but the structural mechanism remains unknown. The interaction between TCTP and eEF1Bδ was investigated by NMR titration, structure determination, paramagnetic relaxation enhancement, site-directed mutagenesis, isothermal titration calorimetry, and HADDOCK docking. We first demonstrated that the catalytic GEF domain of eEF1Bδ is not responsible for binding to TCTP but rather a previously unnoticed central acidic region (CAR) domain in eEF1Bδ. The mutagenesis data and the structural model of the TCTP-eEF1Bδ CAR domain complex revealed the key binding residues. These residues are highly conserved in eukaryotic TCTPs and in eEF1B GEFs, including the eukaryotically conserved eEF1Bα, implying the interaction may be conserved in all eukaryotes. Interactions were confirmed between TCTP and the eEF1Bα CAR domain for human, fission yeast, and unicellular photosynthetic microalgal proteins, suggesting that involvement in protein translation through the conserved interaction with eEF1B represents a primary function of TCTP. PMID:25635048

  12. The evolutionarily conserved transcription factor PRDM12 controls sensory neuron development and pain perception.

    PubMed

    Nagy, Vanja; Cole, Tiffany; Van Campenhout, Claude; Khoung, Thang M; Leung, Calvin; Vermeiren, Simon; Novatchkova, Maria; Wenzel, Daniel; Cikes, Domagoj; Polyansky, Anton A; Kozieradzki, Ivona; Meixner, Arabella; Bellefroid, Eric J; Neely, G Gregory; Penninger, Josef M

    2015-01-01

    PR homology domain-containing member 12 (PRDM12) belongs to a family of conserved transcription factors implicated in cell fate decisions. Here we show that PRDM12 is a key regulator of sensory neuronal specification in Xenopus. Modeling of human PRDM12 mutations that cause hereditary sensory and autonomic neuropathy (HSAN) revealed remarkable conservation of the mutated residues in evolution. Expression of wild-type human PRDM12 in Xenopus induced the expression of sensory neuronal markers, which was reduced using various human PRDM12 mutants. In Drosophila, we identified Hamlet as the functional PRDM12 homolog that controls nociceptive behavior in sensory neurons. Furthermore, expression analysis of human patient fibroblasts with PRDM12 mutations uncovered possible downstream target genes. Knockdown of several of these target genes including thyrotropin-releasing hormone degrading enzyme (TRHDE) in Drosophila sensory neurons resulted in altered cellular morphology and impaired nociception. These data show that PRDM12 and its functional fly homolog Hamlet are evolutionary conserved master regulators of sensory neuronal specification and play a critical role in pain perception. Our data also uncover novel pathways in multiple species that regulate evolutionary conserved nociception.

  13. Evening Expression of Arabidopsis GIGANTEA Is Controlled by Combinatorial Interactions among Evolutionarily Conserved Regulatory Motifs[C][W][OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Nordström, Karl; Cremer, Frédéric; Tóth, Réka; Hartke, Martin; Simon, Samson; Klasen, Jonas R.; Bürstel, Ingmar; Coupland, George

    2014-01-01

    Diurnal patterns of gene transcription are often conferred by complex interactions between circadian clock control and acute responses to environmental cues. Arabidopsis thaliana GIGANTEA (GI) contributes to photoperiodic flowering, circadian clock control, and photoreceptor signaling, and its transcription is regulated by the circadian clock and light. We used phylogenetic shadowing to identify three evolutionarily constrained regions (conserved regulatory modules [CRMs]) within the GI promoter and show that CRM2 is sufficient to confer a similar transcriptional pattern as the full-length promoter. Dissection of CRM2 showed that one subfragment (CRM2-A) contributes light inducibility, while another (CRM2-B) exhibits a diurnal response. Mutational analysis showed that three ABA RESPONSE ELEMENT LIKE (ABREL) motifs in CRM2-A and three EVENING ELEMENTs (EEs) in CRM2-B are essential in combination to confer a high amplitude diurnal pattern of expression. Genome-wide analysis identified characteristic spacing patterns of EEs and 71 A. thaliana promoters containing three EEs. Among these promoters, that of FLAVIN BINDING KELCH REPEAT F-BOX1 was analyzed in detail and shown to harbor a CRM functionally related to GI CRM2. Thus, combinatorial interactions among EEs and ABRELs confer diurnal patterns of transcription via an evolutionarily conserved module present in GI and other evening-expressed genes. PMID:25361953

  14. Evolutionarily conserved serum microRNAs predict radiation-induced fatality in nonhuman primates.

    PubMed

    Fendler, Wojciech; Malachowska, Beata; Meghani, Khyati; Konstantinopoulos, Panagiotis A; Guha, Chandan; Singh, Vijay K; Chowdhury, Dipanjan

    2017-03-01

    Effective planning for the medical response to a radiological or nuclear accident is complex. Because of limited resources for medical countermeasures, the key would be to accurately triage and identify victims most likely to benefit from treatment. We used a mouse model system to provide evidence that serum microRNAs (miRNAs) may effectively predict the impact of radiation on the long-term viability of animals. We had previously used nonhuman primates (NHPs) to demonstrate that this concept is conserved and serum miRNA signatures have the potential to serve as prediction biomarkers for radiation-induced fatality in a human population. We identified a signature of seven miRNAs that are altered by irradiation in both mice and NHPs. Genomic analysis of these conserved miRNAs revealed that there is a combination of seven transcription factors that are predicted to regulate these miRNAs in human, mice, and NHPs. Moreover, a combination of three miRNAs (miR-133b, miR-215, and miR-375) can identify, with nearly complete accuracy, NHPs exposed to radiation versus unexposed NHPs. Consistent with historical data, female macaques appeared to be more sensitive to radiation, but the difference was not significant. Sex-based stratification allowed us to identify an interaction between gender and miR-16-2 expression, which affected the outcome of radiation exposure. Moreover, we developed a classifier based on two miRNAs (miR-30a and miR-126) that can reproducibly predict radiation-induced mortality. Together, we have obtained a five-miRNA composite signature that can identify irradiated macaques and predict their probability of survival.

  15. The evolutionarily conserved RNA binding protein SMOOTH is essential for maintaining normal muscle function.

    PubMed

    Draper, Isabelle; Tabaka, Meg E; Jackson, F Rob; Salomon, Robert N; Kopin, Alan S

    2009-01-01

    The Drosophila smooth gene encodes an RNA binding protein that has been well conserved through evolution. To investigate the pleiotropic functions mediated by the smooth gene, we have selected and characterized two sm mutants, which are viable as adults yet display robust phenotypes (including a significant decrease in lifespan). Utilizing these mutants, we have made the novel observation that disruption of the smooth/CG9218 locus leads to age-dependent muscle degeneration, and motor dysfunction. Histological characterization of adult sm mutants revealed marked abnormalities in the major thoracic tubular muscle: the tergal depressor of the trochanter (TDT). Corresponding defects include extensive loss/disruption of striations and nuclei. These pathological changes are recapitulated in flies that express a smooth RNA interference construct (sm RNAi) in the mesoderm. In contrast, targeting sm RNAi constructs to motor neurons does not alter muscle morphology. In addition to examining the TDT phenotype, we explored whether other muscular abnormalities were evident. Utilizing physiological assays developed in the laboratory, we have found that the thoracic muscle defect is preceded by dysmotility of the gastrointestinal tract. SMOOTH thus joins a growing list of hnRNPs that have previously been linked to muscle physiology/pathophysiology. Our findings in Drosophila set the stage for investigating the role of the corresponding mammalian homolog, hnRNP L, in muscle function.

  16. An Evolutionarily Conserved PLC-PKD-TFEB Pathway for Host Defense.

    PubMed

    Najibi, Mehran; Labed, Sid Ahmed; Visvikis, Orane; Irazoqui, Javier Elbio

    2016-05-24

    The mechanisms that tightly control the transcription of host defense genes have not been fully elucidated. We previously identified TFEB as a transcription factor important for host defense, but the mechanisms that regulate TFEB during infection remained unknown. Here, we used C. elegans to discover a pathway that activates TFEB during infection. Gene dkf-1, which encodes a homolog of protein kinase D (PKD), was required for TFEB activation in nematodes infected with Staphylococcus aureus. Conversely, pharmacological activation of PKD was sufficient to activate TFEB. Furthermore, phospholipase C (PLC) gene plc-1 was also required for TFEB activation, downstream of Gαq homolog egl-30 and upstream of dkf-1. Using reverse and chemical genetics, we discovered a similar PLC-PKD-TFEB axis in Salmonella-infected mouse macrophages. In addition, PKCα was required in macrophages. These observations reveal a previously unknown host defense signaling pathway, which has been conserved across one billion years of evolution.

  17. Circadian regulation of olfaction and an evolutionarily conserved, nontranscriptional marker in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Olmedo, Maria; O'Neill, John S; Edgar, Rachel S; Valekunja, Utham K; Reddy, Akhilesh B; Merrow, Martha

    2012-12-11

    Circadian clocks provide a temporal structure to processes from gene expression to behavior in organisms from all phyla. Most clocks are synchronized to the environment by alternations of light and dark. However, many organisms experience only muted daily environmental cycles due to their lightless spatial niches (e.g., caves or soil). This has led to speculation that they may dispense with the daily clock. However, recent reports contradict this notion, showing various behavioral and molecular rhythms in Caenorhabditis elegans and in blind cave fish. Based on the ecology of nematodes, we applied low-amplitude temperature cycles to synchronize populations of animals through development. This entrainment regime reveals rhythms on multiple levels: in olfactory cued behavior, in RNA and protein abundance, and in the oxidation state of a broadly conserved peroxiredoxin protein. Our work links the nematode clock with that of other clock model systems; it also emphasizes the importance of daily rhythms in sensory functions that are likely to impact on organism fitness and population structure.

  18. The viral transactivator HBx protein exhibits a high potential for regulation via phosphorylation through an evolutionarily conserved mechanism

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Hepatitis B virus (HBV) encodes an oncogenic factor, HBx, which is a multifunctional protein that can induce dysfunctional regulation of signaling pathways, transcription, and cell cycle progression, among other processes, through interactions with target host factors. The subcellular localization of HBx is both cytoplasmic and nuclear. This dynamic distribution of HBx could be essential to the multiple roles of the protein at different stages during HBV infection. Transactivational functions of HBx may be exerted both in the nucleus, via interaction with host DNA-binding proteins, and in the cytoplasm, via signaling pathways. Although there have been many studies describing different pathways altered by HBx, and its innumerable binding partners, the molecular mechanism that regulates its different roles has been difficult to elucidate. Methods In the current study, we took a bioinformatics approach to investigate whether the viral protein HBx might be regulated via phosphorylation by an evolutionarily conserved mechanism. Results We found that the phylogenetically conserved residues Ser25 and Ser41 (both within the negative regulatory domain), and Thr81 (in the transactivation domain) are predicted to be phosphorylated. By molecular 3D modeling of HBx, we further show these residues are all predicted to be exposed on the surface of the protein, making them easily accesible to these types of modifications. Furthermore, we have also identified Yin Yang sites that might have the potential to be phosphorylated and O-β-GlcNAc interplay at the same residues. Conclusions Thus, we propose that the different roles of HBx displayed in different subcellular locations might be regulated by an evolutionarily conserved mechanism of posttranslational modification, via phosphorylation. PMID:23079056

  19. Dissecting the gene network of dietary restriction to identify evolutionarily conserved pathways and new functional genes.

    PubMed

    Wuttke, Daniel; Connor, Richard; Vora, Chintan; Craig, Thomas; Li, Yang; Wood, Shona; Vasieva, Olga; Shmookler Reis, Robert; Tang, Fusheng; de Magalhães, João Pedro

    2012-01-01

    Dietary restriction (DR), limiting nutrient intake from diet without causing malnutrition, delays the aging process and extends lifespan in multiple organisms. The conserved life-extending effect of DR suggests the involvement of fundamental mechanisms, although these remain a subject of debate. To help decipher the life-extending mechanisms of DR, we first compiled a list of genes that if genetically altered disrupt or prevent the life-extending effects of DR. We called these DR-essential genes and identified more than 100 in model organisms such as yeast, worms, flies, and mice. In order for other researchers to benefit from this first curated list of genes essential for DR, we established an online database called GenDR (http://genomics.senescence.info/diet/). To dissect the interactions of DR-essential genes and discover the underlying lifespan-extending mechanisms, we then used a variety of network and systems biology approaches to analyze the gene network of DR. We show that DR-essential genes are more conserved at the molecular level and have more molecular interactions than expected by chance. Furthermore, we employed a guilt-by-association method to predict novel DR-essential genes. In budding yeast, we predicted nine genes related to vacuolar functions; we show experimentally that mutations deleting eight of those genes prevent the life-extending effects of DR. Three of these mutants (OPT2, FRE6, and RCR2) had extended lifespan under ad libitum, indicating that the lack of further longevity under DR is not caused by a general compromise of fitness. These results demonstrate how network analyses of DR using GenDR can be used to make phenotypically relevant predictions. Moreover, gene-regulatory circuits reveal that the DR-induced transcriptional signature in yeast involves nutrient-sensing, stress responses and meiotic transcription factors. Finally, comparing the influence of gene expression changes during DR on the interactomes of multiple organisms led

  20. Evolutionarily conserved recognition and innate immunity to fungal pathogens by the scavenger receptors SCARF1 and CD36

    PubMed Central

    Mylonakis, Eleftherios; Tampakakis, Emmanouil; Colvin, Richard A.; Seung, Edward; Puckett, Lindsay; Tai, Melissa F.; Stewart, Cameron R.; Pukkila-Worley, Read; Hickman, Suzanne E.; Moore, Kathryn J.; Calderwood, Stephen B.; Hacohen, Nir; Luster, Andrew D.; El Khoury, Joseph

    2009-01-01

    Receptors involved in innate immunity to fungal pathogens have not been fully elucidated. We show that the Caenorhabditis elegans receptors CED-1 and C03F11.3, and their mammalian orthologues, the scavenger receptors SCARF1 and CD36, mediate host defense against two prototypic fungal pathogens, Cryptococcus neoformans and Candida albicans. CED-1 and C03F11.1 mediated antimicrobial peptide production and were necessary for nematode survival after C. neoformans infection. SCARF1 and CD36 mediated cytokine production and were required for macrophage binding to C. neoformans, and control of the infection in mice. Binding of these pathogens to SCARF1 and CD36 was β-glucan dependent. Thus, CED-1/SCARF1 and C03F11.3/CD36 are β-glucan binding receptors and define an evolutionarily conserved pathway for the innate sensing of fungal pathogens. PMID:19237602

  1. Genome-wide identification of evolutionarily conserved alternative splicing events in flowering plants.

    PubMed

    Chamala, Srikar; Feng, Guanqiao; Chavarro, Carolina; Barbazuk, W Brad

    2015-01-01

    Alternative splicing (AS) plays important roles in many plant functions, but its conservation across the plant kingdom is not known. We describe a methodology to identify AS events and identify conserved AS events across large phylogenetic distances using RNA-Seq datasets. We applied this methodology to transcriptome data from nine angiosperms including Amborella, the single sister species to all other extant flowering plants. AS events within 40-70% of the expressed multi-exonic genes per species were found, 27,120 of which are conserved among two or more of the taxa studied. While many events are species specific, many others are shared across long evolutionary distances suggesting they have functional significance. Conservation of AS event data provides an estimate of the number of ancestral AS events present at each node of the tree representing the nine species studied. Furthermore, the presence or absence of AS isoforms between species with different whole genome duplication (WGD) histories provides the opportunity to examine the impact of WDG on AS potential. Examining AS in gene families identifies those with high rates of AS, and conservation can distinguish ancient events vs. recent or species specific adaptations. The MADS-box and SR protein families are found to represent families with low and high occurrences of AS, respectively, yet their AS events were likely present in the MRCA of angiosperms.

  2. The evolutionarily conserved Krueppel-associated box domain defines a subfamily of eukaryotic multifingered proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Bellefroid, E.J.; Poncelet, D.A.; Lecocq, P.J.; Revelant, O.; Martial, J.A. )

    1991-05-01

    The authors have previously shown that the human genome includes hundreds of genes coding for putative factors related to the Krueppel zinc-finger protein, which regulates Drosophila segmentation. They report herein that about one-third of these genes code for proteins that share a very conserved region of about 75 amino acids in their N-terminal nonfinger portion. Homologous regions are found in a number of previously described finger proteins, including mouse Zfp-1 and Xenopus Xfin. They named this region the Krueppel-associated box (KRAB). This domain has the potential to form two amphipathic {alpha}-helices. Southern blot analysis of zoo blots suggests that the Krueppel-associated box is highly conserved during evolution. Northern blot analysis shows that these genes are expressed in most adult tissues and are down-regulated during in vitro terminal differentiation of human myeloid cells.

  3. The evolutionarily dynamic IFN-inducible GTPase proteins play conserved immune functions in vertebrates and cephalochordates.

    PubMed

    Li, Guang; Zhang, Juyong; Sun, Yi; Wang, Hua; Wang, Yiquan

    2009-07-01

    Interferon (IFN)-inducible GTPases currently include four families of proteins: myxovirus resistant proteins (Mxs), guanylate-binding proteins (GBPs), immunity-related GTPase proteins (IRGs), and very large inducible GTPase proteins (VLIGs). They are all under conserved regulation by IFNs in humans and mice and play a critical role in preventing microbial infections. However, differences between vertebrates are poorly characterized, and their evolutionary origins have not been studied in detail. In this study, we performed comparative genomic analysis of the four families in 18 representative animals that yielded several unexpected results. Firstly, we found that Mx, GBP, and IRG protein families arose before the divergence of chordate subphyla, but VLIG emerged solely in vertebrates. Secondly, IRG, GBP, and VLIG families have experienced a high rate of gene gain and loss during the evolution, with the GBP family being lost entirely in two pufferfish and VLIG family lost in primates and carnivores. Thirdly, the regulation of these genes by IFNs is highly conserved throughout vertebrates although the VLIG protein sequences in fish have lost the first 870 amino acid residues. Finally, amphioxus IFN-inducible GTPase genes are all highly expressed in immune-related organs such as gill, liver, and intestine and are upregulated after challenge with PolyI:C and pathogens, although no IFNs or their receptors were detected in the current amphioxus genome database. These results suggest that IFN-inducible GTPase genes play conserved immune functions both in vertebrates and in cephalochordates.

  4. Evolutionarily conserved regions of the human c-myc protein can be uncoupled from transforming activity

    SciTech Connect

    Sarid, J.; Halazonetis, T.D.; Murphy, W.; Leder, P.

    1987-01-01

    The myc family of oncogenes contains coding sequences that have been preserved in different species for over 400 million years. This conservation (which implies functional selection) is broadly represented throughout the C-terminal portion of the human c-myc protein but is largely restricted to three cluster of amino acid sequences in the N-terminal region. The authors have examined the role that the latter three regions of the c-myc protein might play in the transforming function of the c-myc gene. Several mutations, deletions and frameshifts, were introduced into the c-myc gene, and these mutant genes were tested for their ability to collaborate with the EJ-ras oncogene to transform rat embryo fibroblasts. Complete elimination of the first two N-terminal conserved segments abolished transforming activity. In contrast, genes altered in a portion of the second or the entire third conserved segment retained their transforming activity. Thus, the latter two segments are not required for the transformation process, suggesting that they serve another function related only to the normal expression of the c-myc gene.

  5. Evolutionarily conserved morphogenetic movements at the vertebrate head-trunk interface coordinate the transport and assembly of hypopharyngeal structures.

    PubMed

    Lours-Calet, Corinne; Alvares, Lucia E; El-Hanfy, Amira S; Gandesha, Saniel; Walters, Esther H; Sobreira, Débora Rodrigues; Wotton, Karl R; Jorge, Erika C; Lawson, Jennifer A; Kelsey Lewis, A; Tada, Masazumi; Sharpe, Colin; Kardon, Gabrielle; Dietrich, Susanne

    2014-06-15

    The vertebrate head-trunk interface (occipital region) has been heavily remodelled during evolution, and its development is still poorly understood. In extant jawed vertebrates, this region provides muscle precursors for the throat and tongue (hypopharyngeal/hypobranchial/hypoglossal muscle precursors, HMP) that take a stereotype path rostrally along the pharynx and are thought to reach their target sites via active migration. Yet, this projection pattern emerged in jawless vertebrates before the evolution of migratory muscle precursors. This suggests that a so far elusive, more basic transport mechanism must have existed and may still be traceable today. Here we show for the first time that all occipital tissues participate in well-conserved cell movements. These cell movements are spearheaded by the occipital lateral mesoderm and ectoderm that split into two streams. The rostrally directed stream projects along the floor of the pharynx and reaches as far rostrally as the floor of the mandibular arch and outflow tract of the heart. Notably, this stream leads and engulfs the later emerging HMP, neural crest cells and hypoglossal nerve. When we (i) attempted to redirect hypobranchial/hypoglossal muscle precursors towards various attractants, (ii) placed non-migratory muscle precursors into the occipital environment or (iii) molecularly or (iv) genetically rendered muscle precursors non-migratory, they still followed the trajectory set by the occipital lateral mesoderm and ectoderm. Thus, we have discovered evolutionarily conserved morphogenetic movements, driven by the occipital lateral mesoderm and ectoderm, that ensure cell transport and organ assembly at the head-trunk interface.

  6. Identification of evolutionarily conserved non-AUG-initiated N-terminal extensions in human coding sequences

    PubMed Central

    Ivanov, Ivaylo P.; Firth, Andrew E.; Michel, Audrey M.; Atkins, John F.; Baranov, Pavel V.

    2011-01-01

    In eukaryotes, it is generally assumed that translation initiation occurs at the AUG codon closest to the messenger RNA 5′ cap. However, in certain cases, initiation can occur at codons differing from AUG by a single nucleotide, especially the codons CUG, UUG, GUG, ACG, AUA and AUU. While non-AUG initiation has been experimentally verified for a handful of human genes, the full extent to which this phenomenon is utilized—both for increased coding capacity and potentially also for novel regulatory mechanisms—remains unclear. To address this issue, and hence to improve the quality of existing coding sequence annotations, we developed a methodology based on phylogenetic analysis of predicted 5′ untranslated regions from orthologous genes. We use evolutionary signatures of protein-coding sequences as an indicator of translation initiation upstream of annotated coding sequences. Our search identified novel conserved potential non-AUG-initiated N-terminal extensions in 42 human genes including VANGL2, FGFR1, KCNN4, TRPV6, HDGF, CITED2, EIF4G3 and NTF3, and also affirmed the conservation of known non-AUG-initiated extensions in 17 other genes. In several instances, we have been able to obtain independent experimental evidence of the expression of non-AUG-initiated products from the previously published literature and ribosome profiling data. PMID:21266472

  7. Evolutionarily conserved differences in pallial and thalamic short-term synaptic plasticity in striatum

    PubMed Central

    Ericsson, Jesper; Stephenson-Jones, Marcus; Kardamakis, Andreas; Robertson, Brita; Silberberg, Gilad; Grillner, Sten

    2013-01-01

    The striatum of the basal ganglia is conserved throughout the vertebrate phylum. Tracing studies in lamprey have shown that its afferent inputs are organized in a manner similar to that of mammals. The main inputs arise from the thalamus (Th) and lateral pallium (LPal; the homologue of cortex) that represents the two principal excitatory glutamatergic inputs in mammals. The aim here was to characterize the pharmacology and synaptic dynamics of afferent fibres from the LPal and Th onto identified striatal neurons to understand the processing taking place in the lamprey striatum. We used whole-cell current-clamp recordings in acute slices of striatum with preserved fibres from the Th and LPal, as well as tract tracing and immunohistochemistry. We show that the Th and LPal produce monosynaptic excitatory glutamatergic input through NMDA and AMPA receptors. The synaptic input from the LPal displayed short-term facilitation, unlike the Th input that instead displayed strong short-term synaptic depression. There was also an activity-dependent recruitment of intrastriatal oligosynaptic inhibition from both inputs. These results indicate that the two principal inputs undergo different activity-dependent short-term synaptic plasticity in the lamprey striatum. The difference observed between Th and LPal (cortical) input is also observed in mammals, suggesting a conserved trait throughout vertebrate evolution. PMID:23148315

  8. An Evolutionarily Conserved DOF-CONSTANS Module Controls Plant Photoperiodic Signaling.

    PubMed

    Lucas-Reina, Eva; Romero-Campero, Francisco J; Romero, José M; Valverde, Federico

    2015-06-01

    The response to daylength is a crucial process that evolved very early in plant evolution, entitling the early green eukaryote to predict seasonal variability and attune its physiological responses to the environment. The photoperiod responses evolved into the complex signaling pathways that govern the angiosperm floral transition today. The Chlamydomonas reinhardtii DNA-Binding with One Finger (CrDOF) gene controls transcription in a photoperiod-dependent manner, and its misexpression influences algal growth and viability. In short days, CrDOF enhances CrCO expression, a homolog of plant CONSTANS (CO), by direct binding to its promoter, while it reduces the expression of cell division genes in long days independently of CrCO. In Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana), transgenic plants overexpressing CrDOF show floral delay and reduced expression of the photoperiodic genes CO and FLOWERING LOCUS T. The conservation of the DOF-CO module during plant evolution could be an important clue to understanding diversification by the inheritance of conserved gene toolkits in key developmental programs.

  9. An Evolutionarily Conserved DOF-CONSTANS Module Controls Plant Photoperiodic Signaling1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    The response to daylength is a crucial process that evolved very early in plant evolution, entitling the early green eukaryote to predict seasonal variability and attune its physiological responses to the environment. The photoperiod responses evolved into the complex signaling pathways that govern the angiosperm floral transition today. The Chlamydomonas reinhardtii DNA-Binding with One Finger (CrDOF) gene controls transcription in a photoperiod-dependent manner, and its misexpression influences algal growth and viability. In short days, CrDOF enhances CrCO expression, a homolog of plant CONSTANS (CO), by direct binding to its promoter, while it reduces the expression of cell division genes in long days independently of CrCO. In Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana), transgenic plants overexpressing CrDOF show floral delay and reduced expression of the photoperiodic genes CO and FLOWERING LOCUS T. The conservation of the DOF-CO module during plant evolution could be an important clue to understanding diversification by the inheritance of conserved gene toolkits in key developmental programs. PMID:25897001

  10. Evolutionarily conserved roles of the dicer helicase domain in regulating RNA interference processing.

    PubMed

    Kidwell, Mary Anne; Chan, Jessica M; Doudna, Jennifer A

    2014-10-10

    The enzyme Dicer generates 21-25 nucleotide RNAs that target specific mRNAs for silencing during RNA interference and related pathways. Although their active sites and RNA binding regions are functionally conserved, the helicase domains have distinct activities in the context of different Dicer enzymes. To examine the evolutionary origins of Dicer helicase functions, we investigated two related Dicer enzymes from the thermophilic fungus Sporotrichum thermophile. RNA cleavage assays showed that S. thermophile Dicer-1 (StDicer-1) can process hairpin precursor microRNAs, whereas StDicer-2 can only cleave linear double-stranded RNAs. Furthermore, only StDicer-2 possesses robust ATP hydrolytic activity in the presence of double-stranded RNA. Deletion of the StDicer-2 helicase domain increases both StDicer-2 cleavage activity and affinity for hairpin RNA. Notably, both StDicer-1 and StDicer-2 could complement the distantly related yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe lacking its endogenous Dicer gene but only in their full-length forms, underscoring the importance of the helicase domain. These results suggest an in vivo regulatory function for the helicase domain that may be conserved from fungi to humans.

  11. Evolutionarily conserved odorant receptor function questions ecological context of octenol role in mosquitoes

    PubMed Central

    Dekel, Amir; Pitts, Ronald J.; Yakir, Esther; Bohbot, Jonathan D.

    2016-01-01

    Olfaction is a key insect adaptation to a wide range of habitats. In the last thirty years, the detection of octenol by blood-feeding insects has been primarily understood in the context of animal host-seeking. The recent discovery of a conserved octenol receptor gene in the strictly nectar-feeding elephant mosquito Toxorhynchites amboinensis (TaOr8) suggests a different biological role. Here, we show that TaOR8 is a functional ortholog of its counterparts in blood-feeding mosquitoes displaying selectivity towards the (R)-enantiomer of octenol and susceptibility to the insect repellent DEET. These findings suggest that while the function of OR8 has been maintained throughout mosquito evolution, the context in which this receptor is operating has diverged in blood and nectar-feeding mosquitoes. PMID:27849027

  12. An actin cytoskeleton with evolutionarily conserved functions in the absence of canonical actin-binding proteins

    PubMed Central

    Paredez, Alexander R.; Assaf, Zoe June; Sept, David; Timofejeva, Ljudmilla; Dawson, Scott C.; Wang, Chung-Ju Rachel; Cande, W. Z.

    2011-01-01

    Giardia intestinalis, a human intestinal parasite and member of what is perhaps the earliest-diverging eukaryotic lineage, contains the most divergent eukaryotic actin identified to date and is the first eukaryote known to lack all canonical actin-binding proteins (ABPs). We sought to investigate the properties and functions of the actin cytoskeleton in Giardia to determine whether Giardia actin (giActin) has reduced or conserved roles in core cellular processes. In vitro polymerization of giActin produced filaments, indicating that this divergent actin is a true filament-forming actin. We generated an anti-giActin antibody to localize giActin throughout the cell cycle. GiActin localized to the cortex, nuclei, internal axonemes, and formed C-shaped filaments along the anterior of the cell and a flagella-bundling helix. These structures were regulated with the cell cycle and in encysting cells giActin was recruited to the Golgi-like cyst wall processing vesicles. Knockdown of giActin demonstrated that giActin functions in cell morphogenesis, membrane trafficking, and cytokinesis. Additionally, Giardia contains a single G protein, giRac, which affects the Giardia actin cytoskeleton independently of known target ABPs. These results imply that there exist ancestral and perhaps conserved roles for actin in core cellular processes that are independent of canonical ABPs. Of medical significance, the divergent giActin cytoskeleton is essential and commonly used actin-disrupting drugs do not depolymerize giActin structures. Therefore, the giActin cytoskeleton is a promising drug target for treating giardiasis, as we predict drugs that interfere with the Giardia actin cytoskeleton will not affect the mammalian host. PMID:21444821

  13. An actin cytoskeleton with evolutionarily conserved functions in the absence of canonical actin-binding proteins.

    PubMed

    Paredez, Alexander R; Assaf, Zoe June; Sept, David; Timofejeva, Ljudmilla; Dawson, Scott C; Wang, Chung-Ju Rachel; Cande, W Z

    2011-04-12

    Giardia intestinalis, a human intestinal parasite and member of what is perhaps the earliest-diverging eukaryotic lineage, contains the most divergent eukaryotic actin identified to date and is the first eukaryote known to lack all canonical actin-binding proteins (ABPs). We sought to investigate the properties and functions of the actin cytoskeleton in Giardia to determine whether Giardia actin (giActin) has reduced or conserved roles in core cellular processes. In vitro polymerization of giActin produced filaments, indicating that this divergent actin is a true filament-forming actin. We generated an anti-giActin antibody to localize giActin throughout the cell cycle. GiActin localized to the cortex, nuclei, internal axonemes, and formed C-shaped filaments along the anterior of the cell and a flagella-bundling helix. These structures were regulated with the cell cycle and in encysting cells giActin was recruited to the Golgi-like cyst wall processing vesicles. Knockdown of giActin demonstrated that giActin functions in cell morphogenesis, membrane trafficking, and cytokinesis. Additionally, Giardia contains a single G protein, giRac, which affects the Giardia actin cytoskeleton independently of known target ABPs. These results imply that there exist ancestral and perhaps conserved roles for actin in core cellular processes that are independent of canonical ABPs. Of medical significance, the divergent giActin cytoskeleton is essential and commonly used actin-disrupting drugs do not depolymerize giActin structures. Therefore, the giActin cytoskeleton is a promising drug target for treating giardiasis, as we predict drugs that interfere with the Giardia actin cytoskeleton will not affect the mammalian host.

  14. Antioxidant properties of UCP1 are evolutionarily conserved in mammals and buffer mitochondrial reactive oxygen species.

    PubMed

    Oelkrug, Rebecca; Goetze, Nadja; Meyer, Carola W; Jastroch, Martin

    2014-12-01

    Mitochondrial uncoupling reduces reactive oxygen species (ROS) production and appears to be important for cellular signaling/protection, making it a focus for the treatment of metabolic and age-related diseases. Whereas the physiological role of uncoupling protein 1 (UCP1) of brown adipose tissue is established for thermogenesis, the function of UCP1 in the reduction of ROS in cold-exposed animals is currently under debate. Here, we investigated the role of UCP1 in mitochondrial ROS handling in the Lesser hedgehog tenrec (Echinops telfairi), a unique protoendothermic Malagasy mammal with recently identified brown adipose tissue (BAT). We show that the reduction of ROS by UCP1 activity also occurs in BAT mitochondria of the tenrec, suggesting that the antioxidative role of UCP1 is an ancient mammalian trait. Our analysis shows that the quantity of UCP1 displays strong control over mitochondrial hydrogen peroxide release, whereas other factors, such as mild cold, nonshivering thermogenesis, oxidative capacity, and mitochondrial respiration, do not correlate. Furthermore, hydrogen peroxide release from recoupled BAT mitochondria was positively associated with mitochondrial membrane potential. These findings led to a model of UCP1 controlling mitochondrial ROS release and, presumably, being controlled by high membrane potential, as proposed in the canonical model of "mild uncoupling". Our study further promotes a conserved role for UCP1 in the prevention of oxidative stress, which was presumably established during evolution before UCP1 was physiologically integrated into nonshivering thermogenesis.

  15. Computational Analysis of an Evolutionarily Conserved VertebrateMuscle Alternative Splicing Program

    SciTech Connect

    Das, Debopriya; Clark, Tyson A.; Schweitzer, Anthony; Marr,Henry; Yamamoto, Miki L.; Parra, Marilyn K.; Arribere, Josh; Minovitsky,Simon; Dubchak, Inna; Blume, John E.; Conboy, John G.

    2006-06-15

    A novel exon microarray format that probes gene expression with single exon resolution was employed to elucidate critical features of a vertebrate muscle alternative splicing program. A dataset of 56 microarray-defined, muscle-enriched exons and their flanking introns were examined computationally in order to investigate coordination of the muscle splicing program. Candidate intron regulatory motifs were required to meet several stringent criteria: significant over-representation near muscle-enriched exons, correlation with muscle expression, and phylogenetic conservation among genomes of several vertebrate orders. Three classes of regulatory motifs were identified in the proximal downstream intron, within 200nt of the target exons: UGCAUG, a specific binding site for Fox-1 related splicing factors; ACUAAC, a novel branchpoint-like element; and UG-/UGC-rich elements characteristic of binding sites for CELF splicing factors. UGCAUG was remarkably enriched, being present in nearly one-half of all cases. These studies suggest that Fox and CELF splicing factors play a major role in enforcing the muscle-specific alternative splicing program, facilitating expression of a set of unique isoforms of cytoskeletal proteins that are critical to muscle cell differentiation. Supplementary materials: There are four supplementary tables and one supplementary figure. The tables provide additional detailed information concerning the muscle-enriched datasets, and about over-represented oligonucleotide sequences in the flanking introns. The supplementary figure shows RT-PCR data confirming the muscle-enriched expression of exons predicted from the microarray analysis.

  16. Molecular genetic aetiology of general cognitive function is enriched in evolutionarily conserved regions

    PubMed Central

    Hill, W D; Davies, G; Harris, S E; Hagenaars, S P; Davies, Gail; Deary, Ian J; Debette, Stephanie; Verbaas, Carla I; Bressler, Jan; Schuur, Maaike; Smith, Albert V; Bis, Joshua C; Bennett, David A; Ikram, M Arfan; Launer, Lenore J; Fitzpatrick, Annette L; Seshadri, Sudha; van Duijn, Cornelia M; Mosley Jr, Thomas H; Liewald, D C; Penke, L; Gale, C R; Deary, I J

    2016-01-01

    Differences in general cognitive function have been shown to be partly heritable and to show genetic correlations with several psychiatric and physical disease states. However, to date, few single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) have demonstrated genome-wide significance, hampering efforts aimed at determining which genetic variants are most important for cognitive function and which regions drive the genetic associations between cognitive function and disease states. Here, we combine multiple large genome-wide association study (GWAS) data sets, from the CHARGE cognitive consortium (n=53 949) and UK Biobank (n=36 035), to partition the genome into 52 functional annotations and an additional 10 annotations describing tissue-specific histone marks. Using stratified linkage disequilibrium score regression we show that, in two measures of cognitive function, SNPs associated with cognitive function cluster in regions of the genome that are under evolutionary negative selective pressure. These conserved regions contained ~2.6% of the SNPs from each GWAS but accounted for ~40% of the SNP-based heritability. The results suggest that the search for causal variants associated with cognitive function, and those variants that exert a pleiotropic effect between cognitive function and health, will be facilitated by examining these enriched regions. PMID:27959336

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

    PubMed

    Punj, Vasu; Chakrabarty, A M

    2003-04-01

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

  18. Analysis of evolutionarily conserved innate immune components in coral links immunity and symbiosis.

    PubMed

    Kvennefors, E Charlotte E; Leggat, William; Kerr, Caroline C; Ainsworth, Tracy D; Hoegh-Guldberg, Ove; Barnes, Andrew C

    2010-11-01

    Reef-building corals are representatives of one of the earliest diverging metazoan lineages and are experiencing increases in bleaching events (breakdown of the coral-Symbiodinium symbiosis) and disease outbreaks. The present study investigates the roles of two pattern recognition proteins, the mannose binding lectin Millectin and a complement factor C3-like protein (C3-Am), in the coral Acropora millepora. The results indicate that the innate immune functions of these molecules are conserved and arose early in evolution. C3-Am is expressed in response to injury, and may function as an opsonin. In contrast, Millectin expression is up-regulated in response to lipopolysaccharide and peptidoglycan. These observations, coupled with localization of Millectin in nematocysts in epidermal tissue, and reported binding of pathogens, are consistent with a key role for the lectin in innate immunity. Furthermore, Millectin was consistently detected binding to the symbiont Symbiodinium in vivo, indicating that the Millectin function of recognition and binding of non-self-entities may have been co-opted from an ancient innate immune system into a role in symbiosis.

  19. Evolutionarily conserved mechanisms of male germline development in flowering plants and animals.

    PubMed

    Pereira, Patrícia A; Navarro-Costa, Paulo; Martinho, Rui Gonçalo; Becker, Jörg D

    2014-04-01

    Sexual reproduction is the main reproductive strategy of the overwhelming majority of eukaryotes. This suggests that the last eukaryotic common ancestor was able to reproduce sexually. Sexual reproduction reflects the ability to perform meiosis, and ultimately generating gametes, which are cells that carry recombined half sets of the parental genome and are able to fertilize. These functions have been allocated to a highly specialized cell lineage: the germline. Given its significant evolutionary conservation, it is to be expected that the germline programme shares common molecular bases across extremely divergent eukaryotic species. In the present review, we aim to identify the unifying principles of male germline establishment and development by comparing two very disparate kingdoms: plants and animals. We argue that male meiosis defines two temporally regulated gene expression programmes: the first is required for meiotic commitment, and the second is required for the acquisition of fertilizing ability. Small RNA pathways are a further key communality, ultimately ensuring the epigenetic stability of the information conveyed by the male germline.

  20. Comparative biology of the pentraxin protein family: evolutionarily conserved component of innate immune system.

    PubMed

    Armstrong, Peter B

    2015-01-01

    The immune system is based on the actions of the collection of specialized immune defense cells and their secreted proteins and peptides that defend the host against infection by parasites. Parasites are organisms that live part or all of their lives in close physical association with the host and extract nutrients from the host and, by releasing toxins and virulence factors, cause disease with the potential for injury and premature death of that host. Parasites of the metazoa can be viruses, eubacteria, fungi, protozoans, and other metazoans. The immune system operates to kill or eliminate parasites and eliminate or detoxify their toxins and virulence factors. Although some of the elements of immune systems are specific to a particular phylum of metazoans, others show extensive evolutionary conservation, being present in several or all major phyla of the metazoa. The pentraxins display this latter character in their roles in immune defense. Pentraxins have been documented in vertebrates, nonvertebrate chordates, arthropods, and mollusks and may be present in other taxa of metazoans. Presumably the pentraxins appeared early in the evolution of metazoa, prior to their evolutionary divergence in the Precambrian epoch into many phyla present today, and have been preserved for the 542 million years since that explosive evolutionary radiation. The fidelity with which these phyla have preserved the pentraxins suggests that the functions of these proteins are important for survival of the members of these diverse taxa of animals.

  1. Eukaryotic Initiation Factor 6, an evolutionarily conserved regulator of ribosome biogenesis and protein translation

    SciTech Connect

    Guo, Jianjun; Jin, Zhaoqing; Yang, Xiaohan; Li, Jian-Feng; Chen, Jay

    2011-01-01

    We recently identified Receptor for Activated C Kinase 1 (RACK1) as one of the molecular links between abscisic acid (ABA) signaling and its regulation on protein translation. Moreover, we identified Eukaryotic Initiation Factor 6 (eIF6) as an interacting partner of RACK1. Because the interaction between RACK1 and eIF6 in mammalian cells is known to regulate the ribosome assembly step of protein translation initiation, it was hypothesized that the same process of protein translation in Arabidopsis is also regulated by RACK1 and eIF6. In this article, we analyzed the amino acid sequences of eIF6 in different species from different lineages and discovered some intriguing differences in protein phosphorylation sites that may contribute to its action in ribosome assembly and biogenesis. In addition, we discovered that, distinct from non-plant organisms in which eIF6 is encoded by a single gene, all sequenced plant genomes contain two or more copies of eIF6 genes. While one copy of plant eIF6 is expressed ubiquitously and might possess the conserved function in ribosome biogenesis and protein translation, the other copy seems to be only expressed in specific organs and therefore may have gained some new functions. We proposed some important studies that may help us better understand the function of eIF6 in plants.

  2. Drosophila KCNQ Channel Displays Evolutionarily Conserved Electrophysiology and Pharmacology with Mammalian KCNQ Channels

    PubMed Central

    Cavaliere, Sonia; Hodge, James J. L.

    2011-01-01

    Of the five human KCNQ (Kv7) channels, KCNQ1 with auxiliary subunit KCNE1 mediates the native cardiac IKs current with mutations causing short and long QT cardiac arrhythmias. KCNQ4 mutations cause deafness. KCNQ2/3 channels form the native M-current controlling excitability of most neurons, with mutations causing benign neonatal febrile convulsions. Drosophila contains a single KCNQ (dKCNQ) that appears to serve alone the functions of all the duplicated mammalian neuronal and cardiac KCNQ channels sharing roughly 50–60% amino acid identity therefore offering a route to investigate these channels. Current information about the functional properties of dKCNQ is lacking therefore we have investigated these properties here. Using whole cell patch clamp electrophysiology we compare the biophysical and pharmacological properties of dKCNQ with the mammalian neuronal and cardiac KCNQ channels expressed in HEK cells. We show that Drosophila KCNQ (dKCNQ) is a slowly activating and slowly-deactivating K+ current open at sub-threshold potentials that has similar properties to neuronal KCNQ2/3 with some features of the cardiac KCNQ1/KCNE1 accompanied by conserved sensitivity to a number of clinically relevant KCNQ blockers (chromanol 293B, XE991, linopirdine) and opener (zinc pyrithione). We also investigate the molecular basis of the differential selectivity of KCNQ channels to the opener retigabine and show a single amino acid substitution (M217W) can confer sensitivity to dKCNQ. We show dKCNQ has similar electrophysiological and pharmacological properties as the mammalian KCNQ channels, allowing future study of physiological and pathological roles of KCNQ in Drosophila and whole organism screening for new modulators of KCNQ channelopathies. PMID:21915266

  3. The Diversification of Evolutionarily Conserved MAPK Cascades Correlates with the Evolution of Fungal Species and Development of Lifestyles

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Chuan; Liu, Ran; Zhang, Qiangqiang; Chen, Xiaoxuan; Qian, Ying

    2017-01-01

    The fungal kingdom displays an extraordinary diversity of lifestyles, developmental processes, and ecological niches. The MAPK (mitogen-activated protein kinase) cascade consists of interlinked MAPKKK, MAPKK, and MAPK, and collectively such cascades play pivotal roles in cellular regulation in fungi. However, the mechanism by which evolutionarily conserved MAPK cascades regulate diverse output responses in fungi remains unknown. Here we identified the full complement of MAPK cascade components from 231 fungal species encompassing 9 fungal phyla. Using the largest data set to date, we found that MAPK family members could have two ancestors, while MAPKK and MAPKKK family members could have only one ancestor. The current MAPK, MAPKK, and MAPKKK subfamilies resulted from duplications and subsequent subfunctionalization during the emergence of the fungal kingdom. However, the gene structure diversification and gene expansion and loss have resulted in significant diversity in fungal MAPK cascades, correlating with the evolution of fungal species and lifestyles. In particular, a distinct evolutionary trajectory of MAPK cascades was identified in single-celled fungi in the Saccharomycetes. All MAPK, MAPKK, and MAPKKK subfamilies expanded in the Saccharomycetes; genes encoding MAPK cascade components have a similar exon–intron structure in this class that differs from those in other fungi. PMID:26957028

  4. A novel, evolutionarily conserved gene family with putative sequence-specific single-stranded DNA-binding activity.

    PubMed

    Castro, Patricia; Liang, Hong; Liang, Jan C; Nagarajan, Lalitha

    2002-07-01

    Complete and partial deletions of chromosome 5q are recurrent cytogenetic anomalies associated with aggressive myeloid malignancies. Earlier, we identified an approximately 1.5-Mb region of loss at 5q13.3 between the loci D5S672 and D5S620 in primary leukemic blasts. A leukemic cell line, ML3, is diploid for all of chromosome 5, except for an inversion-coupled translocation within the D5S672-D5S620 interval. Here, we report the development of a bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) contig to define the breakpoint and the identification of a novel gene SSBP2, the target of disruption in ML3 cells. A preliminary evaluation of SSBP2 as a tumor suppressor gene in primary leukemic blasts and cell lines suggests that the remaining allele does not undergo intragenic mutations. SSBP2 is one of three members of a closely related, evolutionarily conserved, and ubiquitously expressed gene family. SSBP3 is the human ortholog of a chicken gene, CSDP, that encodes a sequence-specific single-stranded DNA-binding protein. SSBP3 localizes to chromosome 1p31.3, and the third member, SSBP4, maps to chromosome 19p13.1. Chromosomal localization and the putative single-stranded DNA-binding activity suggest that all three members of this family are capable of potential tumor suppressor activity by gene dosage or other epigenetic mechanisms.

  5. Evolutionarily-conserved role of the NF-kappaB transcription factor in neural plasticity and memory.

    PubMed

    Romano, Arturo; Freudenthal, Ramiro; Merlo, Emiliano; Routtenberg, Aryeh

    2006-09-01

    NF-kappaB is an evolutionarily conserved family of transcription factors (TFs) critically involved in basic cellular mechanisms of the immune response, inflammation, development and apoptosis. In spite of the fact that it is expressed in the central nervous system, particularly in areas involved in memory processing, and is activated by signals such as glutamate and Ca2+, its role in neural plasticity and memory has only recently become apparent. A surprising feature of this molecule is its presence within the synapse. An increasing number of reports have called attention to the role of this TF in processes that require long-term regulation of the synaptic function underlying memory and neural plasticity. Here we review the evidence regarding a dual role for NF-kappaB, as both a signalling molecule after its activation at the synapse and a transcriptional regulator upon reaching the nucleus. The specific role of this signal, as well as the general transcriptional mechanism, in the process of memory formation is discussed. Converging lines of evidence summarized here point to a pivotal role for the NF-kappaB transcription factor as a direct signalling mechanism in the regulation of gene expression involved in long-term memory.

  6. Evolutionarily Conserved Dual Lysine Motif Determines the Non-Chaperone Function of Secreted Hsp90alpha in Tumor Progression

    PubMed Central

    Sahu, Divya; Hou, Yingping; Tsen, Fred; Tong, Chang; O’Brien, Kathryn; Situ, Alan J.; Schmidt, Thomas; Chen, Mei; Ying, Qilong; Ulmer, Tobias S.; Woodley, David T.; Li, Wei

    2016-01-01

    Both intracellular and extracellular heat shock protein-90 (Hsp90) family proteins (α and β) have been shown to support tumor progression. The tumor-promoting activity of the intracellular Hsp90 proteins is attributed to their N-terminal ATPase-driven chaperone function. What determines the extracellular function of secreted Hsp90 was unclear. Here we show that knocking out Hsp90α nullifies tumor cell abilities to migrate, invade and metastasize without affecting cell survival and growth. Knocking out Hsp90β leads to cell death. Extracellular supplementation with recombinant Hsp90α, but not Hsp90β, protein recovers the tumorigenicity of Hsp90α-knockout cells. Sequential mutagenesis identifies two evolutionarily conserved lysine residues, lys-270 and lys-277, in Hsp90α subfamily that determine the extracellular Hsp90α function. Hsp90β subfamily lacks the dual lysine motif and does not show the same extracellular function. Substitutions of gly-262 and thr-269 in Hsp90β with lysines convert Hsp90β to act as Hsp90α outside the cells. Monoclonal antibody, 1G6-D7, against the dual lysine region of secreted Hsp90α blocks de novo tumor formation and significantly inhibits expansion of already formed tumors. This study suggests an alternative therapeutic approach to selectively target the extracellular Hsp90α to the conventional approach targeting the ATPase of intracellular Hsp90α and Hsp90β in cancer. PMID:27721406

  7. FAM20: an evolutionarily conserved family of secreted proteins expressed in hematopoietic cells

    PubMed Central

    Nalbant, Demet; Youn, Hyewon; Nalbant, S Isil; Sharma, Savitha; Cobos, Everardo; Beale, Elmus G; Du, Yang; Williams, Simon C

    2005-01-01

    Background Hematopoiesis is a complex developmental process controlled by a large number of factors that regulate stem cell renewal, lineage commitment and differentiation. Secreted proteins, including the hematopoietic growth factors, play critical roles in these processes and have important biological and clinical significance. We have employed representational difference analysis to identify genes that are differentially expressed during experimentally induced myeloid differentiation in the murine EML hematopoietic stem cell line. Results One identified clone encoded a previously unidentified protein of 541 amino acids that contains an amino terminal signal sequence but no other characterized domains. This protein is a member of family of related proteins that has been named family with sequence similarity 20 (FAM20) with three members (FAM20A, FAM20B and FAM20C) in mammals. Evolutionary comparisons revealed the existence of a single FAM20 gene in the simple vertebrate Ciona intestinalis and the invertebrate worm Caenorhabditis elegans and two genes in two insect species, Drosophila melanogaster and Anopheles gambiae. Six FAM20 family members were identified in the genome of the pufferfish, Fugu rubripes and five members in the zebrafish, Danio rerio. The mouse Fam20a protein was ectopically expressed in a mammalian cell line and found to be a bona fide secreted protein and efficient secretion was dependent on the integrity of the signal sequence. Expression analysis revealed that the Fam20a gene was indeed differentially expressed during hematopoietic differentiation and that the other two family members (Fam20b and Fam20c) were also expressed during hematcpoiesis but that their mRNA levels did not vary significantly. Likewise FAM20A was expressed in more limited set of human tissues than the other two family members. Conclusions The FAM20 family represents a new family of secreted proteins with potential functions in regulating differentiation and function of

  8. Evolutionarily conserved morphogenetic movements at the vertebrate head–trunk interface coordinate the transport and assembly of hypopharyngeal structures

    PubMed Central

    Lours-Calet, Corinne; Alvares, Lucia E.; El-Hanfy, Amira S.; Gandesha, Saniel; Walters, Esther H.; Sobreira, Débora Rodrigues; Wotton, Karl R.; Jorge, Erika C.; Lawson, Jennifer A.; Kelsey Lewis, A.; Tada, Masazumi; Sharpe, Colin; Kardon, Gabrielle; Dietrich, Susanne

    2014-01-01

    The vertebrate head–trunk interface (occipital region) has been heavily remodelled during evolution, and its development is still poorly understood. In extant jawed vertebrates, this region provides muscle precursors for the throat and tongue (hypopharyngeal/hypobranchial/hypoglossal muscle precursors, HMP) that take a stereotype path rostrally along the pharynx and are thought to reach their target sites via active migration. Yet, this projection pattern emerged in jawless vertebrates before the evolution of migratory muscle precursors. This suggests that a so far elusive, more basic transport mechanism must have existed and may still be traceable today. Here we show for the first time that all occipital tissues participate in well-conserved cell movements. These cell movements are spearheaded by the occipital lateral mesoderm and ectoderm that split into two streams. The rostrally directed stream projects along the floor of the pharynx and reaches as far rostrally as the floor of the mandibular arch and outflow tract of the heart. Notably, this stream leads and engulfs the later emerging HMP, neural crest cells and hypoglossal nerve. When we (i) attempted to redirect hypobranchial/hypoglossal muscle precursors towards various attractants, (ii) placed non-migratory muscle precursors into the occipital environment or (iii) molecularly or (iv) genetically rendered muscle precursors non-migratory, they still followed the trajectory set by the occipital lateral mesoderm and ectoderm. Thus, we have discovered evolutionarily conserved morphogenetic movements, driven by the occipital lateral mesoderm and ectoderm, that ensure cell transport and organ assembly at the head–trunk interface. PMID:24662046

  9. Members of the evolutionarily conserved PMT family of protein O-mannosyltransferases form distinct protein complexes among themselves.

    PubMed

    Girrbach, Verena; Strahl, Sabine

    2003-04-04

    Protein O-mannosyltransferases (PMTs) initiate the assembly of O-mannosyl glycans, an essential protein modification. Since PMTs are evolutionarily conserved in fungi but are absent in green plants, the PMT family is a putative target for new antifungal drugs, particularly in fighting the threat of phytopathogenic fungi. The PMT family is phylogenetically classified into PMT1, PMT2, and PMT4 subfamilies, which differ in protein substrate specificity. In the model organism Saccharomyces cerevisiae as well as in many other fungi the PMT family is highly redundant, and only the simultaneous deletion of PMT1/PMT2 and PMT4 subfamily members is lethal. In this study we analyzed the molecular organization of PMT family members in S. cerevisiae. We show that members of the PMT1 subfamily (Pmt1p and Pmt5p) interact in pairs with members of the PMT2 subfamily (Pmt2p and Pmt3p) and that Pmt1p-Pmt2p and Pmt5p-Pmt3p complexes represent the predominant forms. Under certain physiological conditions, however, Pmt1p interacts also with Pmt3p, and Pmt5p with Pmt2p, suggesting a compensatory cooperation that guarantees the maintenance of O-mannosylation. Unlike the PMT1/PMT2 subfamily members, the single member of the PMT4 subfamily (Pmt4p) acts as a homomeric complex. Using mutational analyses we demonstrate that the same conserved protein domains underlie both heteromeric and homomeric interactions, and we identify an invariant arginine residue of transmembrane domain two as essential for the formation and/or stability of PMT complexes in general. Our data suggest that protein-protein interactions between the PMT family members offer a point of attack to shut down overall protein O-mannosylation in fungi.

  10. Genome engineering uncovers 54 evolutionarily conserved and testis-enriched genes that are not required for male fertility in mice.

    PubMed

    Miyata, Haruhiko; Castaneda, Julio M; Fujihara, Yoshitaka; Yu, Zhifeng; Archambeault, Denise R; Isotani, Ayako; Kiyozumi, Daiji; Kriseman, Maya L; Mashiko, Daisuke; Matsumura, Takafumi; Matzuk, Ryan M; Mori, Masashi; Noda, Taichi; Oji, Asami; Okabe, Masaru; Prunskaite-Hyyrylainen, Renata; Ramirez-Solis, Ramiro; Satouh, Yuhkoh; Zhang, Qian; Ikawa, Masahito; Matzuk, Martin M

    2016-07-12

    Gene-expression analysis studies from Schultz et al. estimate that more than 2,300 genes in the mouse genome are expressed predominantly in the male germ line. As of their 2003 publication [Schultz N, Hamra FK, Garbers DL (2003) Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 100(21):12201-12206], the functions of the majority of these testis-enriched genes during spermatogenesis and fertilization were largely unknown. Since the study by Schultz et al., functional analysis of hundreds of reproductive-tract-enriched genes have been performed, but there remain many testis-enriched genes for which their relevance to reproduction remain unexplored or unreported. Historically, a gene knockout is the "gold standard" to determine whether a gene's function is essential in vivo. Although knockout mice without apparent phenotypes are rarely published, these knockout mouse lines and their phenotypic information need to be shared to prevent redundant experiments. Herein, we used bioinformatic and experimental approaches to uncover mouse testis-enriched genes that are evolutionarily conserved in humans. We then used gene-disruption approaches, including Knockout Mouse Project resources (targeting vectors and mice) and CRISPR/Cas9, to mutate and quickly analyze the fertility of these mutant mice. We discovered that 54 mutant mouse lines were fertile. Thus, despite evolutionary conservation of these genes in vertebrates and in some cases in all eukaryotes, our results indicate that these genes are not individually essential for male mouse fertility. Our phenotypic data are highly relevant in this fiscally tight funding period and postgenomic age when large numbers of genomes are being analyzed for disease association, and will prevent unnecessary expenditures and duplications of effort by others.

  11. Widespread Shortening of 3' Untranslated Regions and Increased Exon Inclusion Are Evolutionarily Conserved Features of Innate Immune Responses to Infection.

    PubMed

    Pai, Athma A; Baharian, Golshid; Pagé Sabourin, Ariane; Brinkworth, Jessica F; Nédélec, Yohann; Foley, Joseph W; Grenier, Jean-Christophe; Siddle, Katherine J; Dumaine, Anne; Yotova, Vania; Johnson, Zachary P; Lanford, Robert E; Burge, Christopher B; Barreiro, Luis B

    2016-09-01

    The contribution of pre-mRNA processing mechanisms to the regulation of immune responses remains poorly studied despite emerging examples of their role as regulators of immune defenses. We sought to investigate the role of mRNA processing in the cellular responses of human macrophages to live bacterial infections. Here, we used mRNA sequencing to quantify gene expression and isoform abundances in primary macrophages from 60 individuals, before and after infection with Listeria monocytogenes and Salmonella typhimurium. In response to both bacteria we identified thousands of genes that significantly change isoform usage in response to infection, characterized by an overall increase in isoform diversity after infection. In response to both bacteria, we found global shifts towards (i) the inclusion of cassette exons and (ii) shorter 3' UTRs, with near-universal shifts towards usage of more upstream polyadenylation sites. Using complementary data collected in non-human primates, we show that these features are evolutionarily conserved among primates. Following infection, we identify candidate RNA processing factors whose expression is associated with individual-specific variation in isoform abundance. Finally, by profiling microRNA levels, we show that 3' UTRs with reduced abundance after infection are significantly enriched for target sites for particular miRNAs. These results suggest that the pervasive usage of shorter 3' UTRs is a mechanism for particular genes to evade repression by immune-activated miRNAs. Collectively, our results suggest that dynamic changes in RNA processing may play key roles in the regulation of innate immune responses.

  12. Comparison of phylogenetically distinct Histoplasma strains reveals evolutionarily divergent virulence strategies.

    PubMed

    Sepúlveda, Victoria E; Williams, Corinne L; Goldman, William E

    2014-07-01

    dependent on the presence of cell wall α-(1,3)-glucan. Surprisingly, comparison of WU24 with two previously characterized isolates revealed that many conclusions regarding relative strain virulence and certain hallmarks of histoplasmosis are dependent on the inoculum size.

  13. Identification of evolutionarily conserved Momordica charantia microRNAs using computational approach and its utility in phylogeny analysis.

    PubMed

    Thirugnanasambantham, Krishnaraj; Saravanan, Subramanian; Karikalan, Kulandaivelu; Bharanidharan, Rajaraman; Lalitha, Perumal; Ilango, S; HairulIslam, Villianur Ibrahim

    2015-10-01

    Momordica charantia (bitter gourd, bitter melon) is a monoecious Cucurbitaceae with anti-oxidant, anti-microbial, anti-viral and anti-diabetic potential. Molecular studies on this economically valuable plant are very essential to understand its phylogeny and evolution. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are conserved, small, non-coding RNA with ability to regulate gene expression by bind the 3' UTR region of target mRNA and are evolved at different rates in different plant species. In this study we have utilized homology based computational approach and identified 27 mature miRNAs for the first time from this bio-medically important plant. The phylogenetic tree developed from binary data derived from the data on presence/absence of the identified miRNAs were noticed to be uncertain and biased. Most of the identified miRNAs were highly conserved among the plant species and sequence based phylogeny analysis of miRNAs resolved the above difficulties in phylogeny approach using miRNA. Predicted gene targets of the identified miRNAs revealed their importance in regulation of plant developmental process. Reported miRNAs held sequence conservation in mature miRNAs and the detailed phylogeny analysis of pre-miRNA sequences revealed genus specific segregation of clusters.

  14. Lariat sequencing in a unicellular yeast identifies regulated alternative splicing of exons that are evolutionarily conserved with humans.

    PubMed

    Awan, Ali R; Manfredo, Amanda; Pleiss, Jeffrey A

    2013-07-30

    Alternative splicing is a potent regulator of gene expression that vastly increases proteomic diversity in multicellular eukaryotes and is associated with organismal complexity. Although alternative splicing is widespread in vertebrates, little is known about the evolutionary origins of this process, in part because of the absence of phylogenetically conserved events that cross major eukaryotic clades. Here we describe a lariat-sequencing approach, which offers high sensitivity for detecting splicing events, and its application to the unicellular fungus, Schizosaccharomyces pombe, an organism that shares many of the hallmarks of alternative splicing in mammalian systems but for which no previous examples of exon-skipping had been demonstrated. Over 200 previously unannotated splicing events were identified, including examples of regulated alternative splicing. Remarkably, an evolutionary analysis of four of the exons identified here as subject to skipping in S. pombe reveals high sequence conservation and perfect length conservation with their homologs in scores of plants, animals, and fungi. Moreover, alternative splicing of two of these exons have been documented in multiple vertebrate organisms, making these the first demonstrations of identical alternative-splicing patterns in species that are separated by over 1 billion y of evolution.

  15. BMP, Wnt and FGF signals are integrated through evolutionarily conserved enhancers to achieve robust expression of Pax3 and Zic genes at the zebrafish neural plate border.

    PubMed

    Garnett, Aaron T; Square, Tyler A; Medeiros, Daniel M

    2012-11-01

    Neural crest cells generate a range of cells and tissues in the vertebrate head and trunk, including peripheral neurons, pigment cells, and cartilage. Neural crest cells arise from the edges of the nascent central nervous system, a domain called the neural plate border (NPB). NPB induction is known to involve the BMP, Wnt and FGF signaling pathways. However, little is known about how these signals are integrated to achieve temporally and spatially specific expression of genes in NPB cells. Furthermore, the timing and relative importance of these signals in NPB formation appears to differ between vertebrate species. Here, we use heat-shock overexpression and chemical inhibitors to determine whether, and when, BMP, Wnt and FGF signaling are needed for expression of the NPB specifiers pax3a and zic3 in zebrafish. We then identify four evolutionarily conserved enhancers from the pax3a and zic3 loci and test their response to BMP, Wnt and FGF perturbations. We find that all three signaling pathways are required during gastrulation for the proper expression of pax3a and zic3 in the zebrafish NPB. We also find that, although the expression patterns driven by the pax3a and zic3 enhancers largely overlap, they respond to different combinations of BMP, Wnt and FGF signals. Finally, we show that the combination of the two pax3a enhancers is less susceptible to signaling perturbations than either enhancer alone. Taken together, our results reveal how BMPs, FGFs and Wnts act cooperatively and redundantly through partially redundant enhancers to achieve robust, specific gene expression in the zebrafish NPB.

  16. Gonadal apoptosis during sex reversal of the rice field eel: implications for an evolutionarily conserved role of the molecular chaperone heat shock protein 10.

    PubMed

    He, Yan; Shang, Xuan; Sun, Junhua; Zhang, Lei; Zhao, Wei; Tian, Yihao; Cheng, Hanhua; Zhou, Rongjia

    2010-06-15

    Role of apoptosis in gonadal transformation of the rice field eel remains unknown. Here we report characterization of apoptotic pattern of testis, ovary, and ovotestis of the rice field eel, a vertebrate with natural sex reversal characteristic. DNA laddering assay showed typical ladder with step around 200 bp in the gonads, especially in testis. Terminal transferase dUTP nick end labeling on gonads indicated obvious apoptotic signals in the seminiferous tubules. Western blot analysis revealed that pro-apoptotic genes, Caspase 9 and p53, were upregulated and anti-apoptotic factor Bcl2 was downregulated in testis compared with both ovary and ovotestis. These data indicated that sex reversal process is accompanied by gonadal apoptosis with the highest proportion of cell death in the testis. Furthermore, we identified the Hsp10 by differentially screening of testis, ovary, and ovotestis using microarray technique, which is evolutionarily conserved and differentially expressed during gonadal transformation. Downregulation of Hsp10 is consistent with high apoptosis during the gonadal transformation. Flow cytometry assay confirmed that Hsp10 inhibits the apoptosis in male gonadal cells. Moreover, upregulation and mis-localization at sub-cellular level of the HSP10 together with its partner HSP60 is associated with tumorigenesis in human testis. These results suggest that downregulation of Hsp10 would be one of the main causes of apoptosis in testis, overexpression of Hsp10 suppresses apoptosis, and potentially results in testis tumorigenesis, which provide clues for understanding the mechanisms of germ cell apoptosis. Development of Hsp10 as a diagnostic marker or even treatment target will be promising in testis cancer diagnosis and therapy.

  17. The functions of the multiproduct and rapidly evolving dec-1 eggshell gene are conserved between evolutionarily distant species of Drosophila.

    PubMed Central

    Badciong, J C; Otto, J M; Waring, G L

    2001-01-01

    The Drosophila dec-1 gene encodes multiple proteins that are required for female fertility and proper eggshell morphogenesis. Genetic and immunolocalization data suggest that the different DEC-1 proteins are functionally distinct. To identify regions within the proteins with potential biological significance, we cloned and sequenced the D. yakuba and D. virilis dec-1 homologs. Interspecies comparisons of the predicted translation products revealed rapidly evolving sequences punctuated by blocks of conserved amino acids. Despite extensive amino acid variability, the proteins produced by the different dec-1 homologs were functionally interchangeable. The introduction of transgenes containing either the D. yakuba or the D. virilis dec-1 open reading frames into a D. melanogaster DEC-1 protein null mutant was sufficient to restore female fertility and wild-type eggshell morphology. Normal expression and extracellular processing of the DEC-1 proteins was correlated with the phenotypic rescue. The nature of the conserved features highlighted by the evolutionary comparison and the molecular resemblance of some of these features to those found in other extracellular proteins suggests functional correlates for some of the multiple DEC-1 derivatives. PMID:11729155

  18. Roundabout controls axon crossing of the CNS midline and defines a novel subfamily of evolutionarily conserved guidance receptors.

    PubMed

    Kidd, T; Brose, K; Mitchell, K J; Fetter, R D; Tessier-Lavigne, M; Goodman, C S; Tear, G

    1998-01-23

    The robo gene in Drosophila was identified in a large-scale mutant screen for genes that control the decision by axons to cross the CNS midline. In robo mutants, too many axons cross and recross the midline. Here we show that robo encodes an axon guidance receptor that defines a novel subfamily of immunoglobulin superfamily proteins that is highly conserved from fruit flies to mammals. For those axons that never cross the midline, Robo is expressed on their growth cones from the outset; for the majority of axons that do cross the midline, Robo is expressed at high levels on their growth cones only after they cross the midline. Transgenic rescue experiments reveal that Robo can function in a cell-autonomous fashion. Robo appears to function as the gatekeeper controlling midline crossing.

  19. FLRF, a novel evolutionarily conserved RING finger gene, is differentially expressed in mouse fetal and adult hematopoietic stem cells and progenitors.

    PubMed

    Abdullah, J M; Li, X; Nachtman, R G; Jurecic, R

    2001-01-01

    Through differential screening of mouse hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) and progenitor subtracted cDNA libraries we have identified a HSC-specific transcript that represents a novel RING finger gene, named FLRF (fetal liver ring finger). FLRF represent a novel evolutionarily highly conserved RING finger gene, present in Drosophila, zebrafish, Xenopus, mouse, and humans. Full-length cDNA clones for mouse and human gene encode an identical protein of 317 amino acids with a C3HC4 RING finger domain at the amino terminus. During embryonic hematopoiesis FLRF is abundantly transcribed in mouse fetal liver HSC (Sca-1+c-kit+AA4.1+Lin- cells), but is not expressed in progenitors (AA4.1-). In adult mice FLRF is not transcribed in a highly enriched population of bone marrow HSC (Rh-123lowSca-1+c-kit+Lin- cells). Its expression is upregulated in a more heterogeneous population of bone marrow HSC (Lin-Sca-1+ cells), downregulated as they differentiate into progenitors (Lin-Sca-1- cells), and upregulated as progenitors differentiate into mature lymphoid and myeloid cell types. The human FLRF gene that spans a region of at least 12 kb and consists of eight exons was localized to chromosome 12q13, a region with frequent chromosome aberrations associated with multiple cases of acute myeloid leukemia and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. The analysis of the genomic sequence upstream of the first exon in the mouse and human FLRF gene has revealed that both putative promoters contain multiple putative binding sites for several hematopoietic (GATA-1, GATA-2, GATA-3, Ikaros, SCL/Tal-1, AML1, MZF-1, and Lmo2) and other transcription factors, suggesting that mouse and human FLRF expression could be regulated in a developmental and cell-specific manner during hematopoiesis. Evolutionary conservation and differential expression in fetal and adult HSC and progenitors suggest that the FLRF gene could play an important role in HSC/progenitor cell lineage commitment and differentiation and could be

  20. Molecular phylogeny and biogeography of the weevil subfamily Platypodinae reveals evolutionarily conserved range patterns.

    PubMed

    Jordal, Bjarte H

    2015-11-01

    Platypodinae is a peculiar weevil subfamily of species that cultivate fungi in tunnels excavated in dead wood. Their geographical distribution is generally restricted, with genera confined to a single continent or large island, which provides a useful system for biogeographical research. This study establishes the first detailed molecular phylogeny of the group, with the aim of testing hypotheses on classification, diversification, and biogeography. A phylogeny was reconstructed based on 3648 nucleotides from COI, EF-1α, CAD, ArgK, and 28S. Tree topology was well resolved and indicated a strong correlation with geography, more so than predicted by previous morphology-based classifications. Tesserocerini was paraphyletic, with Notoplatypus as the sister group to a clade consisting of three main lineages of Tesserocerini and the recently evolved Platypodini. Austroplatypus formed the sister group to all remaining Platypodini and hence confirmed its separate status from Platypus. The Indo-Australian genera of Platypodini were strikingly paraphyletic, suggesting that the taxonomy of this tribe needs careful revision. Ancestral-area reconstructions in Lagrange and S-DIVA were ambiguous for nodes roughly older than 80 Ma. More recent events were firmly assessed and involved post-Gondwanan long-distance dispersal. The Neotropics was colonized three times, all from the Afrotropical region, with the latest event less than 25 Ma that included the ancestor of all Neotropical Platypodini.

  1. Microfluidic affinity and ChIP-seq analyses converge on a conserved FOXP2-binding motif in chimp and human, which enables the detection of evolutionarily novel targets.

    PubMed

    Nelson, Christopher S; Fuller, Chris K; Fordyce, Polly M; Greninger, Alexander L; Li, Hao; DeRisi, Joseph L

    2013-07-01

    The transcription factor forkhead box P2 (FOXP2) is believed to be important in the evolution of human speech. A mutation in its DNA-binding domain causes severe speech impairment. Humans have acquired two coding changes relative to the conserved mammalian sequence. Despite intense interest in FOXP2, it has remained an open question whether the human protein's DNA-binding specificity and chromatin localization are conserved. Previous in vitro and ChIP-chip studies have provided conflicting consensus sequences for the FOXP2-binding site. Using MITOMI 2.0 microfluidic affinity assays, we describe the binding site of FOXP2 and its affinity profile in base-specific detail for all substitutions of the strongest binding site. We find that human and chimp FOXP2 have similar binding sites that are distinct from previously suggested consensus binding sites. Additionally, through analysis of FOXP2 ChIP-seq data from cultured neurons, we find strong overrepresentation of a motif that matches our in vitro results and identifies a set of genes with FOXP2 binding sites. The FOXP2-binding sites tend to be conserved, yet we identified 38 instances of evolutionarily novel sites in humans. Combined, these data present a comprehensive portrait of FOXP2's-binding properties and imply that although its sequence specificity has been conserved, some of its genomic binding sites are newly evolved.

  2. In Silico Analysis of Gene Expression Network Components Underlying Pigmentation Phenotypes in the Python Identified Evolutionarily Conserved Clusters of Transcription Factor Binding Sites

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Color variation provides the opportunity to investigate the genetic basis of evolution and selection. Reptiles are less studied than mammals. Comparative genomics approaches allow for knowledge gained in one species to be leveraged for use in another species. We describe a comparative vertebrate analysis of conserved regulatory modules in pythons aimed at assessing bioinformatics evidence that transcription factors important in mammalian pigmentation phenotypes may also be important in python pigmentation phenotypes. We identified 23 python orthologs of mammalian genes associated with variation in coat color phenotypes for which we assessed the extent of pairwise protein sequence identity between pythons and mouse, dog, horse, cow, chicken, anole lizard, and garter snake. We next identified a set of melanocyte/pigment associated transcription factors (CREB, FOXD3, LEF-1, MITF, POU3F2, and USF-1) that exhibit relatively conserved sequence similarity within their DNA binding regions across species based on orthologous alignments across multiple species. Finally, we identified 27 evolutionarily conserved clusters of transcription factor binding sites within ~200-nucleotide intervals of the 1500-nucleotide upstream regions of AIM1, DCT, MC1R, MITF, MLANA, OA1, PMEL, RAB27A, and TYR from Python bivittatus. Our results provide insight into pigment phenotypes in pythons. PMID:27698666

  3. An evolutionarily conserved mechanism for cAMP elicited axonal regeneration involves direct activation of the dual leucine zipper kinase DLK

    PubMed Central

    Hao, Yan; Frey, Erin; Yoon, Choya; Wong, Hetty; Nestorovski, Douglas; Holzman, Lawrence B; Giger, Roman J; DiAntonio, Aaron; Collins, Catherine

    2016-01-01

    A broadly known method to stimulate the growth potential of axons is to elevate intracellular levels of cAMP, however the cellular pathway(s) that mediate this are not known. Here we identify the Dual Leucine-zipper Kinase (DLK, Wnd in Drosophila) as a critical target and effector of cAMP in injured axons. DLK/Wnd is thought to function as an injury ‘sensor’, as it becomes activated after axonal damage. Our findings in both Drosophila and mammalian neurons indicate that the cAMP effector kinase PKA is a conserved and direct upstream activator of Wnd/DLK. PKA is required for the induction of Wnd signaling in injured axons, and DLK is essential for the regenerative effects of cAMP in mammalian DRG neurons. These findings link two important mediators of responses to axonal injury, DLK/Wnd and cAMP/PKA, into a unified and evolutionarily conserved molecular pathway for stimulating the regenerative potential of injured axons. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.14048.001 PMID:27268300

  4. The Evolutionarily Conserved LIM Homeodomain Protein LIM-4/LHX6 Specifies the Terminal Identity of a Cholinergic and Peptidergic C. elegans Sensory/Inter/Motor Neuron-Type.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jinmahn; Yeon, Jihye; Choi, Seong-Kyoon; Huh, Yang Hoon; Fang, Zi; Park, Seo Jin; Kim, Myoung Ok; Ryoo, Zae Young; Kang, Kyeongjin; Kweon, Hee-Seok; Jeon, Won Bae; Li, Chris; Kim, Kyuhyung

    2015-08-01

    The expression of specific transcription factors determines the differentiated features of postmitotic neurons. However, the mechanism by which specific molecules determine neuronal cell fate and the extent to which the functions of transcription factors are conserved in evolution are not fully understood. In C. elegans, the cholinergic and peptidergic SMB sensory/inter/motor neurons innervate muscle quadrants in the head and control the amplitude of sinusoidal movement. Here we show that the LIM homeobox protein LIM-4 determines neuronal characteristics of the SMB neurons. In lim-4 mutant animals, expression of terminal differentiation genes, such as the cholinergic gene battery and the flp-12 neuropeptide gene, is completely abolished and thus the function of the SMB neurons is compromised. LIM-4 activity promotes SMB identity by directly regulating the expression of the SMB marker genes via a distinct cis-regulatory motif. Two human LIM-4 orthologs, LHX6 and LHX8, functionally substitute for LIM-4 in C. elegans. Furthermore, C. elegans LIM-4 or human LHX6 can induce cholinergic and peptidergic characteristics in the human neuronal cell lines. Our results indicate that the evolutionarily conserved LIM-4/LHX6 homeodomain proteins function in generation of precise neuronal subtypes.

  5. The Evolutionarily Conserved LIM Homeodomain Protein LIM-4/LHX6 Specifies the Terminal Identity of a Cholinergic and Peptidergic C. elegans Sensory/Inter/Motor Neuron-Type

    PubMed Central

    Choi, Seong-Kyoon; Huh, Yang Hoon; Fang, Zi; Park, Seo Jin; Kim, Myoung Ok; Ryoo, Zae Young; Kang, Kyeongjin; Kweon, Hee-Seok; Jeon, Won Bae; Li, Chris; Kim, Kyuhyung

    2015-01-01

    The expression of specific transcription factors determines the differentiated features of postmitotic neurons. However, the mechanism by which specific molecules determine neuronal cell fate and the extent to which the functions of transcription factors are conserved in evolution are not fully understood. In C. elegans, the cholinergic and peptidergic SMB sensory/inter/motor neurons innervate muscle quadrants in the head and control the amplitude of sinusoidal movement. Here we show that the LIM homeobox protein LIM-4 determines neuronal characteristics of the SMB neurons. In lim-4 mutant animals, expression of terminal differentiation genes, such as the cholinergic gene battery and the flp-12 neuropeptide gene, is completely abolished and thus the function of the SMB neurons is compromised. LIM-4 activity promotes SMB identity by directly regulating the expression of the SMB marker genes via a distinct cis-regulatory motif. Two human LIM-4 orthologs, LHX6 and LHX8, functionally substitute for LIM-4 in C. elegans. Furthermore, C. elegans LIM-4 or human LHX6 can induce cholinergic and peptidergic characteristics in the human neuronal cell lines. Our results indicate that the evolutionarily conserved LIM-4/LHX6 homeodomain proteins function in generation of precise neuronal subtypes. PMID:26305787

  6. The role of evolutionarily conserved germ-line DH sequence in B-1 cell development and natural antibody production.

    PubMed

    Vale, Andre M; Nobrega, Alberto; Schroeder, Harry W

    2015-12-01

    Because of N addition and variation in the site of VDJ joining, the third complementarity-determining region of the heavy chain (CDR-H3) is the most diverse component of the initial immunoglobulin antigen-binding site repertoire. A large component of the peritoneal cavity B-1 cell component is the product of fetal and perinatal B cell production. The CDR-H3 repertoire is thus depleted of N addition, which increases dependency on germ-line sequence. Cross-species comparisons have shown that DH gene sequence demonstrates conservation of amino acid preferences by reading frame. Preference for reading frame 1, which is enriched for tyrosine and glycine, is created both by rearrangement patterns and by pre-BCR and BCR selection. In previous studies, we have assessed the role of conserved DH sequence by examining peritoneal cavity B-1 cell numbers and antibody production in BALB/c mice with altered DH loci. Here, we review our finding that changes in the constraints normally imposed by germ-line-encoded amino acids within the CDR-H3 repertoire profoundly affect B-1 cell development, especially B-1a cells, and thus natural antibody immunity. Our studies suggest that both natural and somatic selection operate to create a restricted B-1 cell CDR-H3 repertoire.

  7. An evolutionarily conserved Myostatin proximal promoter/enhancer confers basal levels of transcription and spatial specificity in vivo.

    PubMed

    Grade, Carla Vermeulen Carvalho; Salerno, Mônica Senna; Schubert, Frank R; Dietrich, Susanne; Alvares, Lúcia Elvira

    2009-10-01

    Myostatin (Mstn) is a negative regulator of skeletal muscle mass, and Mstn mutations are responsible for the double muscling phenotype observed in many animal species. Moreover, Mstn is a positive regulator of adult muscle stem cell (satellite cell) quiescence, and hence, Mstn is being targeted in therapeutic approaches to muscle diseases. In order to better understand the mechanisms underlying Mstn regulation, we searched for the gene's proximal enhancer and promoter elements, using an evolutionary approach. We identified a 260-bp-long, evolutionary conserved region upstream of tetrapod Mstn and teleost mstn b genes. This region contains binding sites for TATA binding protein, Meis1, NF-Y, and for CREB family members, suggesting the involvement of cAMP in Myostatin regulation. The conserved fragment was able to drive reporter gene expression in C2C12 cells in vitro and in chicken somites in vivo; both normally express Mstn. In contrast, the reporter construct remained silent in the avian neural tube that normally does not express Mstn. This suggests that the identified element serves as a minimal promoter, harboring some spatial specificity. Finally, using bioinformatic approaches, we identified additional genes in the human genome associated with sequences similar to the Mstn proximal promoter/enhancer. Among them are genes important for myogenesis. This suggests that Mstn and these genes may form a synexpression group, regulated by a common signaling pathway.

  8. The M1 family of vertebrate aminopeptidases: role of evolutionarily conserved tyrosines in the enzymatic mechanism of aminopeptidase B.

    PubMed

    Cadel, Sandrine; Darmon, Cécile; Pernier, Julien; Hervé, Guy; Foulon, Thierry

    2015-02-01

    Aminopeptidase B (Ap-B), a member of the M1 family of Zn(2+)-aminopeptidases, removes basic residues at the NH2-terminus of peptides and is involved in the in vivo proteolytic processing of miniglucagon and cholecystokinin-8. M1 enzymes hydrolyze numerous different peptides and are implicated in many physiological functions. As these enzymes have similar catalytic mechanisms, their respective substrate specificity and/or catalytic efficiency must be based on subtle structural differences at or near the catalytic site. This leads to the hypothesis that each primary structure contains a consensus structural template, strictly necessary for aminopeptidase activity, and a specific amino acid environment localized in or outside the catalytic pocket that finely tunes the substrate specificity and catalytic efficiency of each enzyme. A multiple sequence alignment of M1 peptidases from vertebrates allowed to identify conserved tyrosine amino acids, which are members of this catalytic backbone. In the present work, site-directed mutagenesis and 3D molecular modeling of Ap-B were used to specify the role of four fully (Y281, Y229, Y414, and Y441) and one partially (Y409) conserved residues. Tyrosine to phenylalanine mutations allowed confirming the influence of the hydroxyl groups on the enzyme activity. These groups are implicated in the reaction mechanism (Y414), in substrate specificity and/or catalytic efficiency (Y409), in stabilization of essential amino acids of the active site (Y229, Y409) and potentially in the maintenance of its structural integrity (Y281, Y441). The importance of hydrogen bonds is verified by the Y229H substitution, which preserves the enzyme activity. These data provide new insights into the catalytic mechanism of Ap-B in the M1 family of aminopeptidases.

  9. Evolutionarily conserved sequences of striated muscle myosin heavy chain isoforms. Epitope mapping by cDNA expression.

    PubMed

    Miller, J B; Teal, S B; Stockdale, F E

    1989-08-05

    A cDNA expression strategy was used to localize amino acid sequences which were specific for fast, as opposed to slow, isoforms of the chicken skeletal muscle myosin heavy chain (MHC) and which were conserved in vertebrate evolution. Five monoclonal antibodies (mAbs), termed F18, F27, F30, F47, and F59, were prepared that reacted with all of the known chicken fast MHC isoforms but did not react with any of the known chicken slow nor with smooth muscle MHC isoforms. The epitopes recognized by mAbs F18, F30, F47, and F59 were on the globular head fragment of the MHC, whereas the epitope recognized by mAb F27 was on the helical tail or rod fragment. Reactivity of all five mAbs also was confined to fast MHCs in the rat, with the exception of mAb F59, which also reacted with the beta-cardiac MHC, the single slow MHC isoform common to both the rat heart and skeletal muscle. None of the five epitopes was expressed on amphioxus, nematode, or Dictyostelium MHC. The F27 and F59 epitopes were found on shark, electric ray, goldfish, newt, frog, turtle, chicken, quail, rabbit, and rat MHCs. The epitopes recognized by these mAbs were conserved, therefore, to varying degrees through vertebrate evolution and differed in sequence from homologous regions of a number of invertebrate MHCs and myosin-like proteins. The sequence of those epitopes on the head were mapped using a two-part cDNA expression strategy. First, Bal31 exonuclease digestion was used to rapidly generate fragments of a chicken embryonic fast MHC cDNA that were progressively deleted from the 3' end. These cDNA fragments were expressed as beta-galactosidase/MHC fusion proteins using the pUR290 vector; the fusion proteins were tested by immunoblotting for reactivity with the mAbs; and the approximate locations of the epitopes were determined from the sizes of the cDNA fragments that encoded a particular epitope. The epitopes were then precisely mapped by expression of overlapping cDNA fragments of known sequence that

  10. Pi class glutathione S-transferase genes are regulated by Nrf 2 through an evolutionarily conserved regulatory element in zebrafish

    PubMed Central

    Suzuki, Takafumi; Takagi, Yaeko; Osanai, Hitoshi; Li, Li; Takeuchi, Miki; Katoh, Yasutake; Kobayashi, Makoto; Yamamoto, Masayuki

    2005-01-01

    Pi class GSTs (glutathione S-transferases) are a member of the vertebrate GST family of proteins that catalyse the conjugation of GSH to electrophilic compounds. The expression of Pi class GST genes can be induced by exposure to electrophiles. We demonstrated previously that the transcription factor Nrf 2 (NF-E2 p45-related factor 2) mediates this induction, not only in mammals, but also in fish. In the present study, we have isolated the genomic region of zebrafish containing the genes gstp1 and gstp2. The regulatory regions of zebrafish gstp1 and gstp2 have been examined by GFP (green fluorescent protein)-reporter gene analyses using microinjection into zebrafish embryos. Deletion and point-mutation analyses of the gstp1 promoter showed that an ARE (antioxidant-responsive element)-like sequence is located 50 bp upstream of the transcription initiation site which is essential for Nrf 2 transactivation. Using EMSA (electrophoretic mobility-shift assay) analysis we showed that zebrafish Nrf 2–MafK heterodimer specifically bound to this sequence. All the vertebrate Pi class GST genes harbour a similar ARE-like sequence in their promoter regions. We propose that this sequence is a conserved target site for Nrf 2 in the Pi class GST genes. PMID:15654768

  11. An essential and evolutionarily conserved role of protein arginine methyltransferase 1 for adult intestinal stem cells during postembryonic development.

    PubMed

    Matsuda, Hiroki; Shi, Yun-Bo

    2010-11-01

    Organ-specific adult stem cells are critical for the homeostasis of adult organs and organ repair and regeneration. Unfortunately, it has been difficult to investigate the origins of these stem cells and the mechanisms of their development, especially in mammals. Intestinal remodeling during frog metamorphosis offers a unique opportunity for such studies. During the transition from an herbivorous tadpole to a carnivorous frog, the intestine is completely remodeled as the larval epithelial cells undergo apoptotic degeneration and are replaced by adult epithelial cells developed de novo. The entire metamorphic process is under the control of thyroid hormone, making it possible to control the development of the adult intestinal stem cells. Here, we show that the thyroid hormone receptor-coactivator protein arginine methyltransferase 1 (PRMT1) is upregulated in a small number of larval epithelial cells and that these cells dedifferentiate to become the adult stem cells. More importantly, transgenic overexpression of PRMT1 leads to increased adult stem cells in the intestine, and conversely, knocking down the expression of endogenous PRMT1 reduces the adult stem cell population. In addition, PRMT1 expression pattern during zebrafish and mouse development suggests that PRMT1 may play an evolutionally conserved role in the development of adult intestinal stem cells throughout vertebrates. These findings are not only important for the understanding of organ-specific adult stem cell development but also have important implications in regenerative medicine of the digestive tract.

  12. An Evolutionarily Conserved Switch in Response to GABA Affects Development and Behavior of the Locomotor Circuit of Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Han, Bingjie; Bellemer, Andrew; Koelle, Michael R.

    2015-01-01

    The neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) is depolarizing in the developing vertebrate brain, but in older animals switches to hyperpolarizing and becomes the major inhibitory neurotransmitter in adults. We discovered a similar developmental switch in GABA response in Caenorhabditis elegans and have genetically analyzed its mechanism and function in a well-defined circuit. Worm GABA neurons innervate body wall muscles to control locomotion. Activation of GABAA receptors with their agonist muscimol in newly hatched first larval (L1) stage animals excites muscle contraction and thus is depolarizing. At the mid-L1 stage, as the GABAergic neurons rewire onto their mature muscle targets, muscimol shifts to relaxing muscles and thus has switched to hyperpolarizing. This muscimol response switch depends on chloride transporters in the muscles analogous to those that control GABA response in mammalian neurons: the chloride accumulator sodium-potassium-chloride-cotransporter-1 (NKCC-1) is required for the early depolarizing muscimol response, while the two chloride extruders potassium-chloride-cotransporter-2 (KCC-2) and anion-bicarbonate-transporter-1 (ABTS-1) are required for the later hyperpolarizing response. Using mutations that disrupt GABA signaling, we found that neural circuit development still proceeds to completion but with an ∼6-hr delay. Using optogenetic activation of GABAergic neurons, we found that endogenous GABAA signaling in early L1 animals, although presumably depolarizing, does not cause an excitatory response. Thus a developmental depolarizing-to-hyperpolarizing shift is an ancient conserved feature of GABA signaling, but existing theories for why this shift occurs appear inadequate to explain its function upon rigorous genetic analysis of a well-defined neural circuit. PMID:25644702

  13. Redundant ERF-VII Transcription Factors Bind to an Evolutionarily Conserved cis-Motif to Regulate Hypoxia-Responsive Gene Expression in Arabidopsis

    PubMed Central

    Gasch, Philipp; Fundinger, Moritz; Müller, Jana T.; Lee, Travis; Mustroph, Angelika

    2016-01-01

    The response of Arabidopsis thaliana to low-oxygen stress (hypoxia), such as during shoot submergence or root waterlogging, includes increasing the levels of ∼50 hypoxia-responsive gene transcripts, many of which encode enzymes associated with anaerobic metabolism. Upregulation of over half of these mRNAs involves stabilization of five group VII ethylene response factor (ERF-VII) transcription factors, which are routinely degraded via the N-end rule pathway of proteolysis in an oxygen- and nitric oxide-dependent manner. Despite their importance, neither the quantitative contribution of individual ERF-VIIs nor the cis-regulatory elements they govern are well understood. Here, using single- and double-null mutants, the constitutively synthesized ERF-VIIs RELATED TO APETALA2.2 (RAP2.2) and RAP2.12 are shown to act redundantly as principle activators of hypoxia-responsive genes; constitutively expressed RAP2.3 contributes to this redundancy, whereas the hypoxia-induced HYPOXIA RESPONSIVE ERF1 (HRE1) and HRE2 play minor roles. An evolutionarily conserved 12-bp cis-regulatory motif that binds to and is sufficient for activation by RAP2.2 and RAP2.12 is identified through a comparative phylogenetic motif search, promoter dissection, yeast one-hybrid assays, and chromatin immunopurification. This motif, designated the hypoxia-responsive promoter element, is enriched in promoters of hypoxia-responsive genes in multiple species. PMID:26668304

  14. Sequence of cDNAs for mammalian H2A.Z, an evolutionarily diverged but highly conserved basal histone H2A isoprotein species.

    PubMed Central

    Hatch, C L; Bonner, W M

    1988-01-01

    The nucleotide sequences of cDNAs for the evolutionarily diverged but highly conserved basal H2A isoprotein, H2A.Z, have been determined for the rat, cow, and human. As a basal histone, H2A.Z is synthesized throughout the cell cycle at a constant rate, unlinked to DNA replication, and at a much lower rate in quiescent cells. Each of the cDNA isolates encodes the entire H2A.Z polypeptide. The human isolate is about 1.0 kilobases long. It contains a coding region of 387 nucleotides flanked by 106 nucleotides of 5'UTR and 376 nucleotides of 3'UTR, which contains a polyadenylation signal followed by a poly A tail. The bovine and rat cDNAs have 97 and 94% nucleotide positional identity to the human cDNA in the coding region and 98% in the proximal 376 nucleotides of the 3'UTR which includes the polyadenylation signal. A potential stem-forming sequence imbedded in a direct repeat is found centered at 261 nucleotides into the 3'UTR. Each of the cDNA clones could be transcribed and translated in vitro to yield H2A.Z protein. The mammalian H2A.Z cDNA coding sequences are approximately 80% similar to those in chicken and 75% to those in sea urchin. PMID:3344202

  15. A genome-wide Drosophila screen for heat nociception identifies α2δ3 as an evolutionarily conserved pain gene.

    PubMed

    Neely, G Gregory; Hess, Andreas; Costigan, Michael; Keene, Alex C; Goulas, Spyros; Langeslag, Michiel; Griffin, Robert S; Belfer, Inna; Dai, Feng; Smith, Shad B; Diatchenko, Luda; Gupta, Vaijayanti; Xia, Cui-Ping; Amann, Sabina; Kreitz, Silke; Heindl-Erdmann, Cornelia; Wolz, Susanne; Ly, Cindy V; Arora, Suchir; Sarangi, Rinku; Dan, Debasis; Novatchkova, Maria; Rosenzweig, Mark; Gibson, Dustin G; Truong, Darwin; Schramek, Daniel; Zoranovic, Tamara; Cronin, Shane J F; Angjeli, Belinda; Brune, Kay; Dietzl, Georg; Maixner, William; Meixner, Arabella; Thomas, Winston; Pospisilik, J Andrew; Alenius, Mattias; Kress, Michaela; Subramaniam, Sai; Garrity, Paul A; Bellen, Hugo J; Woolf, Clifford J; Penninger, Josef M

    2010-11-12

    Worldwide, acute, and chronic pain affects 20% of the adult population and represents an enormous financial and emotional burden. Using genome-wide neuronal-specific RNAi knockdown in Drosophila, we report a global screen for an innate behavior and identify hundreds of genes implicated in heat nociception, including the α2δ family calcium channel subunit straightjacket (stj). Mice mutant for the stj ortholog CACNA2D3 (α2δ3) also exhibit impaired behavioral heat pain sensitivity. In addition, in humans, α2δ3 SNP variants associate with reduced sensitivity to acute noxious heat and chronic back pain. Functional imaging in α2δ3 mutant mice revealed impaired transmission of thermal pain-evoked signals from the thalamus to higher-order pain centers. Intriguingly, in α2δ3 mutant mice, thermal pain and tactile stimulation triggered strong cross-activation, or synesthesia, of brain regions involved in vision, olfaction, and hearing.

  16. Nonclassical MHC class I-dependent invariant T cells are evolutionarily conserved and prominent from early development in amphibians.

    PubMed

    Edholm, Eva-Stina; Albertorio Saez, Liz-Marie; Gill, Ann L; Gill, Steven R; Grayfer, Leon; Haynes, Nikesha; Myers, Jason R; Robert, Jacques

    2013-08-27

    Human and murine MHC nonclassical class Ib-restricted invariant T (iT) cell subsets, such as invariant natural killer T cells (iNKT) and mucosal-associated invariant T cells, have specialized functions early in immune responses, especially in modulating subsequent adaptive immune responses. Here, we characterize a prominent iT population in the amphibian Xenopus laevis and show the requirement of the class Ib molecule, Xenopus nonclassical gene 10, in its differentiation and function. Using Xenopus nonclassical gene 10 tetramers and RNAi loss of function by transgenesis, we identified a large class Ib-dependent CD8(-)/CD4(-) iT subset in unmanipulated frogs and tadpoles. This population is critical for antiviral immunity during early larval stages when classical MHC class Ia function is suboptimal. Furthermore, in young tadpoles with low class Ia expression, deep sequencing revealed additional preponderant invariant T cell receptor (TCR)α rearrangements, implying other iT cell subsets and a predominant selection process mediated by other class Ib molecules. The restriction and requirement of class Ib molecules for development and antiviral immunity of a mammalian iNKT or mucosal-associated invariant T cell counterpart in the amphibian Xenopus show the importance of iT cells in the emergence and evolution of the adaptive immune system.

  17. The transcription factor HNF1α induces expression of angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) in pancreatic islets from evolutionarily conserved promoter motifs.

    PubMed

    Pedersen, Kim Brint; Chhabra, Kavaljit H; Nguyen, Van K; Xia, Huijing; Lazartigues, Eric

    2013-11-01

    Pancreatic angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) has previously been shown to be critical for maintaining glycemia and β-cell function. Efforts to maintain or increase ACE2 expression in pancreatic β-cells might therefore have therapeutic potential for treating diabetes. In our study, we investigated the transcriptional role of hepatocyte nuclear factor 1α (HNF1α) and hepatocyte nuclear factor 1β (HNF1β) in induction of ACE2 expression in insulin-secreting cells. A deficient allele of HNF1α or HNF1β causes maturity-onset diabetes of the young (MODY) types 3 and 5, respectively, in humans. We found that ACE2 is primarily transcribed from the proximal part of the ACE2 promoter in the pancreas. In the proximal part of the human ACE2 promoter, we further identified three functional HNF1 binding sites, as they have binding affinity for HNF1α and HNF1β and are required for induction of promoter activity by HNF1β in insulinoma cells. These three sites are well-conserved among mammalian species. Both HNF1α and HNF1β induce expression of ACE2 mRNA and lead to elevated levels of ACE2 protein and ACE2 enzymatic activity in insulinoma cells. Furthermore, HNF1α dose-dependently increases ACE2 expression in primary pancreatic islet cells. We conclude that HNF1α can induce the expression of ACE2 in pancreatic islet cells via evolutionarily conserved HNF1 binding sites in the ACE2 promoter. Potential therapeutics aimed at counteracting functional HNF1α depletion in diabetes and MODY3 will thus have ACE2 induction in pancreatic islets as a likely beneficial effect.

  18. Fragile X mental retardation protein has a unique, evolutionarily conserved neuronal function not shared with FXR1P or FXR2P.

    PubMed

    Coffee, R Lane; Tessier, Charles R; Woodruff, Elvin A; Broadie, Kendal

    2010-01-01

    Fragile X syndrome (FXS), resulting solely from the loss of function of the human fragile X mental retardation 1 (hFMR1) gene, is the most common heritable cause of mental retardation and autism disorders, with syndromic defects also in non-neuronal tissues. In addition, the human genome encodes two closely related hFMR1 paralogs: hFXR1 and hFXR2. The Drosophila genome, by contrast, encodes a single dFMR1 gene with close sequence homology to all three human genes. Drosophila that lack the dFMR1 gene (dfmr1 null mutants) recapitulate FXS-associated molecular, cellular and behavioral phenotypes, suggesting that FMR1 function has been conserved, albeit with specific functions possibly sub-served by the expanded human gene family. To test evolutionary conservation, we used tissue-targeted transgenic expression of all three human genes in the Drosophila disease model to investigate function at (1) molecular, (2) neuronal and (3) non-neuronal levels. In neurons, dfmr1 null mutants exhibit elevated protein levels that alter the central brain and neuromuscular junction (NMJ) synaptic architecture, including an increase in synapse area, branching and bouton numbers. Importantly, hFMR1 can, comparably to dFMR1, fully rescue both the molecular and cellular defects in neurons, whereas hFXR1 and hFXR2 provide absolutely no rescue. For non-neuronal requirements, we assayed male fecundity and testes function. dfmr1 null mutants are effectively sterile owing to disruption of the 9+2 microtubule organization in the sperm tail. Importantly, all three human genes fully and equally rescue mutant fecundity and spermatogenesis defects. These results indicate that FMR1 gene function is evolutionarily conserved in neural mechanisms and cannot be compensated by either FXR1 or FXR2, but that all three proteins can substitute for each other in non-neuronal requirements. We conclude that FMR1 has a neural-specific function that is distinct from its paralogs, and that the unique FMR1 function

  19. Widespread Shortening of 3’ Untranslated Regions and Increased Exon Inclusion Are Evolutionarily Conserved Features of Innate Immune Responses to Infection

    PubMed Central

    Pagé Sabourin, Ariane; Nédélec, Yohann; Dumaine, Anne; Yotova, Vania; Johnson, Zachary P.; Lanford, Robert E.; Burge, Christopher B.

    2016-01-01

    The contribution of pre-mRNA processing mechanisms to the regulation of immune responses remains poorly studied despite emerging examples of their role as regulators of immune defenses. We sought to investigate the role of mRNA processing in the cellular responses of human macrophages to live bacterial infections. Here, we used mRNA sequencing to quantify gene expression and isoform abundances in primary macrophages from 60 individuals, before and after infection with Listeria monocytogenes and Salmonella typhimurium. In response to both bacteria we identified thousands of genes that significantly change isoform usage in response to infection, characterized by an overall increase in isoform diversity after infection. In response to both bacteria, we found global shifts towards (i) the inclusion of cassette exons and (ii) shorter 3’ UTRs, with near-universal shifts towards usage of more upstream polyadenylation sites. Using complementary data collected in non-human primates, we show that these features are evolutionarily conserved among primates. Following infection, we identify candidate RNA processing factors whose expression is associated with individual-specific variation in isoform abundance. Finally, by profiling microRNA levels, we show that 3’ UTRs with reduced abundance after infection are significantly enriched for target sites for particular miRNAs. These results suggest that the pervasive usage of shorter 3’ UTRs is a mechanism for particular genes to evade repression by immune-activated miRNAs. Collectively, our results suggest that dynamic changes in RNA processing may play key roles in the regulation of innate immune responses. PMID:27690314

  20. IAPs contain an evolutionarily conserved ubiquitin-binding domain that regulates NF-kappaB as well as cell survival and oncogenesis.

    PubMed

    Gyrd-Hansen, Mads; Darding, Maurice; Miasari, Maria; Santoro, Massimo M; Zender, Lars; Xue, Wen; Tenev, Tencho; da Fonseca, Paula C A; Zvelebil, Marketa; Bujnicki, Janusz M; Lowe, Scott; Silke, John; Meier, Pascal

    2008-11-01

    The covalent attachment of ubiquitin to target proteins influences various cellular processes, including DNA repair, NF-kappaB signalling and cell survival. The most common mode of regulation by ubiquitin-conjugation involves specialized ubiquitin-binding proteins that bind to ubiquitylated proteins and link them to downstream biochemical processes. Unravelling how the ubiquitin-message is recognized is essential because aberrant ubiquitin-mediated signalling contributes to tumour formation. Recent evidence indicates that inhibitor of apoptosis (IAP) proteins are frequently overexpressed in cancer and their expression level is implicated in contributing to tumorigenesis, chemoresistance, disease progression and poor patient-survival. Here, we have identified an evolutionarily conserved ubiquitin-associated (UBA) domain in IAPs, which enables them to bind to Lys 63-linked polyubiquitin. We found that the UBA domain is essential for the oncogenic potential of cIAP1, to maintain endothelial cell survival and to protect cells from TNF-alpha-induced apoptosis. Moreover, the UBA domain is required for XIAP and cIAP2-MALT1 to activate NF-kappaB. Our data suggest that the UBA domain of cIAP2-MALT1 stimulates NF-kappaB signalling by binding to polyubiquitylated NEMO. Significantly, 98% of all cIAP2-MALT1 fusion proteins retain the UBA domain, suggesting that ubiquitin-binding contributes to the oncogenic potential of cIAP2-MALT1 in MALT lymphoma. Our data identify IAPs as ubiquitin-binding proteins that contribute to ubiquitin-mediated cell survival, NF-kappaB signalling and oncogenesis.

  1. TRANSCRIPTION. Structures of the RNA polymerase-σ54 reveal new and conserved regulatory strategies.

    PubMed

    Yang, Yun; Darbari, Vidya C; Zhang, Nan; Lu, Duo; Glyde, Robert; Wang, Yi-Ping; Winkelman, Jared T; Gourse, Richard L; Murakami, Katsuhiko S; Buck, Martin; Zhang, Xiaodong

    2015-08-21

    Transcription by RNA polymerase (RNAP) in bacteria requires specific promoter recognition by σ factors. The major variant σ factor (σ(54)) initially forms a transcriptionally silent complex requiring specialized adenosine triphosphate-dependent activators for initiation. Our crystal structure of the 450-kilodalton RNAP-σ(54) holoenzyme at 3.8 angstroms reveals molecular details of σ(54) and its interactions with RNAP. The structure explains how σ(54) targets different regions in RNAP to exert its inhibitory function. Although σ(54) and the major σ factor, σ(70), have similar functional domains and contact similar regions of RNAP, unanticipated differences are observed in their domain arrangement and interactions with RNAP, explaining their distinct properties. Furthermore, we observe evolutionarily conserved regulatory hotspots in RNAPs that can be targeted by a diverse range of mechanisms to fine tune transcription.

  2. Coastal leatherback turtles reveal conservation hotspot

    PubMed Central

    Robinson, Nathan J.; Morreale, Stephen J.; Nel, Ronel; Paladino, Frank V.

    2016-01-01

    Previous studies have shown that the world’s largest reptile – the leatherback turtle Dermochelys coriacea – conducts flexible foraging migrations that can cover thousands of kilometres between nesting sites and distant foraging areas. The vast distances that may be travelled by migrating leatherback turtles have greatly complicated conservation efforts for this species worldwide. However, we demonstrate, using a combination of satellite telemetry and stable isotope analysis, that approximately half of the nesting leatherbacks from an important rookery in South Africa do not migrate to distant foraging areas, but rather, forage in the coastal waters of the nearby Mozambique Channel. Moreover, this coastal cohort appears to remain resident year-round in shallow waters (<50 m depth) in a relatively fixed area. Stable isotope analyses further indicate that the Mozambique Channel also hosts large numbers of loggerhead turtles Caretta caretta. The rare presence of a resident coastal aggregation of leatherback turtles not only presents a unique opportunity for conservation, but alongside the presence of loggerhead turtles and other endangered marine megafauna in the Mozambique Channel, highlights the importance of this area as a marine biodiversity hotspot. PMID:27886262

  3. Characterization of Drosophila GDNF Receptor-Like and Evidence for Its Evolutionarily Conserved Interaction with Neural Cell Adhesion Molecule (NCAM)/FasII

    PubMed Central

    Kallijärvi, Jukka; Stratoulias, Vassilis; Virtanen, Kristel; Hietakangas, Ville; Heino, Tapio I.; Saarma, Mart

    2012-01-01

    Background Glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) family ligands are secreted growth factors distantly related to the TGF-β superfamily. In mammals, they bind to the GDNF family receptor α (Gfrα) and signal through the Ret receptor tyrosine kinase. In order to gain insight into the evolution of the Ret-Gfr-Gdnf signaling system, we have cloned and characterized the first invertebrate Gfr-like cDNA (DmGfrl) from Drosophila melanogaster and generated a DmGfrl mutant allele. Results We found that DmGfrl encodes a large GPI-anchored membrane protein with four GFR-like domains. In line with the fact that insects lack GDNF ligands, DmGfrl mediated neither Drosophila Ret phosphorylation nor mammalian RET phosphorylation. In situ hybridization analysis revealed that DmGfrl is expressed in the central and peripheral nervous systems throughout Drosophila development, but, surprisingly, DmGfrl and DmRet expression patterns were largely non-overlapping. We generated a DmGfrl null allele by genomic FLP deletion and found that both DmGfrl null females and males are viable but display fertility defects. The female fertility defect manifested as dorsal appendage malformation, small size and reduced viability of eggs laid by mutant females. In male flies DmGfrl interacted genetically with the Drosophila Ncam (neural cell adhesion molecule) homolog FasII to regulate fertility. Conclusion Our results suggest that Ret and Gfrl did not function as an in cis receptor-coreceptor pair before the emergence of GDNF family ligands, and that the Ncam-Gfr interaction predated the in cis Ret-Gfr interaction in evolution. The fertility defects that we describe in DmGfrl null flies suggest that GDNF receptor-like has an evolutionarily ancient role in regulating male fertility and a previously unrecognized role in regulating oogenesis. Significance These results shed light on the evolutionary aspects of the structure, expression and function of Ret-Gfrα and Ncam-Gfrα signaling

  4. Conservation of AtTZF1, AtTZF2, and AtTZF3 homolog gene regulation by salt stress in evolutionarily distant plant species

    PubMed Central

    D’Orso, Fabio; De Leonardis, Anna M.; Salvi, Sergio; Gadaleta, Agata; Ruberti, Ida; Cattivelli, Luigi; Morelli, Giorgio; Mastrangelo, Anna M.

    2015-01-01

    Arginine-rich tandem zinc-finger proteins (RR-TZF) participate in a wide range of plant developmental processes and adaptive responses to abiotic stress, such as cold, salt, and drought. This study investigates the conservation of the genes AtTZF1-5 at the level of their sequences and expression across plant species. The genomic sequences of the two RR-TZF genes TdTZF1-A and TdTZF1-B were isolated in durum wheat and assigned to chromosomes 3A and 3B, respectively. Sequence comparisons revealed that they encode proteins that are highly homologous to AtTZF1, AtTZF2, and AtTZF3. The expression profiles of these RR-TZF durum wheat and Arabidopsis proteins support a common function in the regulation of seed germination and responses to abiotic stress. In particular, analysis of plants with attenuated and overexpressed AtTZF3 indicate that AtTZF3 is a negative regulator of seed germination under conditions of salt stress. Finally, comparative sequence analyses establish that the RR-TZF genes are encoded by lower plants, including the bryophyte Physcomitrella patens and the alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. The regulation of the Physcomitrella AtTZF1-2-3-like genes by salt stress strongly suggests that a subgroup of the RR-TZF proteins has a function that has been conserved throughout evolution. PMID:26136754

  5. Strigolactone biosynthesis is evolutionarily conserved, regulated by phosphate starvation and contributes to resistance against phytopathogenic fungi in a moss, Physcomitrella patens.

    PubMed

    Decker, Eva L; Alder, Adrian; Hunn, Stefan; Ferguson, Jenny; Lehtonen, Mikko T; Scheler, Bjoern; Kerres, Klaus L; Wiedemann, Gertrud; Safavi-Rizi, Vajiheh; Nordzieke, Steffen; Balakrishna, Aparna; Baz, Lina; Avalos, Javier; Valkonen, Jari P T; Reski, Ralf; Al-Babili, Salim

    2017-03-06

    In seed plants, strigolactones (SLs) regulate architecture and induce mycorrhizal symbiosis in response to environmental cues. SLs are formed by combined activity of the carotenoid cleavage dioxygenases (CCDs) 7 and 8 from 9-cis-β-carotene, leading to carlactone that is converted by cytochromes P450 (clade 711; MAX1 in Arabidopsis) into various SLs. As Physcomitrella patens possesses CCD7 and CCD8 homologs but lacks MAX1, we investigated if PpCCD7 together with PpCCD8 form carlactone and how deletion of these enzymes influences growth and interactions with the environment. We investigated the enzymatic activity of PpCCD7 and PpCCD8 in vitro, identified the formed products by high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and LC-MS, and generated and analysed ΔCCD7 and ΔCCD8 mutants. We defined enzymatic activity of PpCCD7 as a stereospecific 9-cis-CCD and PpCCD8 as a carlactone synthase. ΔCCD7 and ΔCCD8 lines showed enhanced caulonema growth, which was revertible by adding the SL analogue GR24 or carlactone. Wild-type (WT) exudates induced seed germination in Orobanche ramosa. This activity was increased upon phosphate starvation and abolished in exudates of both mutants. Furthermore, both mutants showed increased susceptibility to phytopathogenic fungi. Our study reveals the deep evolutionary conservation of SL biosynthesis, SL function, and its regulation by biotic and abiotic cues.

  6. An evolutionarily conserved interaction of tumor suppressor protein Pdcd4 with the poly(A)-binding protein contributes to translation suppression by Pdcd4.

    PubMed

    Fehler, Olesja; Singh, Priyanka; Haas, Astrid; Ulrich, Diana; Müller, Jan P; Ohnheiser, Johanna; Klempnauer, Karl-Heinz

    2014-01-01

    The tumor suppressor protein programmed cell death 4 (Pdcd4) has been implicated in the translational regulation of specific mRNAs, however, the identities of the natural Pdcd4 target mRNAs and the mechanisms by which Pdcd4 affects their translation are not well understood. Pdcd4 binds to the eukaryotic translation initiation factor eIF4A and inhibits its helicase activity, which has suggested that Pdcd4 suppresses translation initiation of mRNAs containing structured 5'-untranslated regions. Recent work has revealed a second inhibitory mechanism, which is eIF4A-independent and involves direct RNA-binding of Pdcd4 to the target mRNAs. We have now identified the poly(A)-binding protein (PABP) as a novel direct interaction partner of Pdcd4. The ability to interact with PABP is shared between human and Drosophila Pdcd4, indicating that it has been highly conserved during evolution. Mutants of Pdcd4 that have lost the ability to interact with PABP fail to stably associate with ribosomal complexes in sucrose density gradients and to suppress translation, as exemplified by c-myb mRNA. Overall, our work identifies PABP as a novel functionally relevant Pdcd4 interaction partner that contributes to the regulation of translation by Pdcd4.

  7. C13C4.5/Spinster, an evolutionarily conserved protein that regulates fertility in C. elegans through a lysosome-mediated lipid metabolism process.

    PubMed

    Han, Mei; Chang, Hao; Zhang, Peng; Chen, Tao; Zhao, Yanhua; Zhang, Yongdeng; Liu, Pingsheng; Xu, Tao; Xu, Pingyong

    2013-05-01

    Lipid droplets, which are conserved across almost all species, are cytoplasmic organelles used to store neutral lipids. Identification of lipid droplet regulators will be conducive to resolving obesity and other fat-associated diseases. In this paper, we selected 11 candidates that might be associated with lipid metabolism in Caenorhabditis elegans. Using a BODIPY 493/503-based flow cytometry screen, 6 negative and 3 positive regulators of fat content were identified. We selected one negative regulator of lipid content, C13C4.5, for future study. C13C4.5 was mainly expressed in the worm intestine. We found that this gene was important for maintaining the metabolism of lipid droplets. Biochemical results revealed that 50% of triacylglycerol (TAG) was lost in C13C4.5 knockout worms. Stimulated Raman scattering (SRS) signals in C13C4.5 mutants showed only 49.6% of the fat content in the proximal intestinal region and 86.3% in the distal intestinal region compared with wild type animals. The mean values of lipid droplet size and intensity in C13C4.5 knockout animals were found to be significantly decreased compared with those in wild type worms. The LMP-1-labeled membrane structures in worm intestines were also enlarged in C13C4.5 mutant animals. Finally, fertility defects were found in C13C4.5(ok2087) mutants. Taken together, these results indicate that C13C4.5 may regulate the fertility of C. elegans by changing the size and fat content of lipid droplets by interfering with lysosomal morphology and function.

  8. Identification of proliferation-induced genes in Arabidopsis thaliana. Characterization of a new member of the highly evolutionarily conserved histone H2A.F/Z variant subfamily.

    PubMed Central

    Callard, D; Mazzolini, L

    1997-01-01

    The changes in gene expression associated with the reinitiation of cell division and subsequent progression through the cell cycle in Arabidopsis thaliana cell-suspension cultures were investigated. Partial synchronization of cells was achieved by a technique combining phosphate starvation and a transient treatment with the DNA replication inhibitor aphidicolin. Six cDNAs corresponding to genes highly induced in proliferating cells and showing cell-cycle-regulated expression were obtained by the mRNA differential display technique. Full-length cDNA clones (cH2BAt and cH2AvAt) corresponding to two of the display products were subsequently isolated. The cH2BAt clone codes for a novel histone H2B protein, whereas the cH2AvAt cDNA corresponds to a gene encoding a new member of the highly conserved histone H2A.F/Z subfamily of chromosomal proteins. Further studies indicated that H2AvAt mRNA expression is tightly correlated with cell proliferation in cell-suspension cultures, and that closely related analogs of the encoded protein exist in Arabidopsis. The implications of the conservation of histone H2A.F/Z variants in plants are discussed. PMID:9414552

  9. Evolutionarily conserved organization of the dopaminergic system in lamprey: SNc/VTA afferent and efferent connectivity and D2 receptor expression.

    PubMed

    Pérez-Fernández, Juan; Stephenson-Jones, Marcus; Suryanarayana, Shreyas M; Robertson, Brita; Grillner, Sten

    2014-12-01

    The dopaminergic system influences motor behavior, signals reward and novelty, and is an essential component of the basal ganglia in all vertebrates including the lamprey, one of the phylogenetically oldest vertebrates. The intrinsic organization and function of the lamprey basal ganglia is highly conserved. For instance, the direct and indirect pathways are modulated through dopamine D1 and D2 receptors in lamprey and in mammals. The nucleus of the tuberculum posterior, a homologue of the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc)/ventral tegmental area (VTA) is present in lamprey, but only scarce data exist about its connectivity. Likewise, the D2 receptor is expressed in the striatum, but little is known about its localization in other brain areas. We used in situ hybridization and tracer injections, both in combination with tyrosine hydroxylase immunohistochemistry, to characterize the SNc/VTA efferent and afferent connectivity, and to relate its projection pattern with D2 receptor expression in particular. We show that most features of the dopaminergic system are highly conserved. As in mammals, the direct pallial (cortex in mammals) input and the basal ganglia connectivity with the SNc/VTA are present as part of the evaluation system, as well as input from the tectum as the evolutionary basis for salience/novelty detection. Moreover, the SNc/VTA receives sensory information from the olfactory bulbs, optic tectum, octavolateral area, and dorsal column nucleus, and it innervates, apart from the nigrostriatal pathway, several motor-related areas. This suggests that the dopaminergic system also contributes to the control of different motor centers at the brainstem level.

  10. Evolutionarily conserved Ets family members display distinct DNA binding specificities [published erratum appears in J Exp Med 1993 Sep 1;178(3):1133

    PubMed Central

    1992-01-01

    Members of the Ets family of proto-oncogenes encode sequence-specific transcription factors that bind to a purine-rich motif centered around a conserved GGA trinucleotide. Ets binding sites have been identified in the transcriptional regulatory regions of multiple T cell genes including the T cell receptor alpha and beta (TCR-alpha and -beta) enhancers and the IL-2 enhancer, as well as in the enhancers of several T cell-trophic viruses including Maloney sarcoma virus, human leukemia virus type 1, and human immunodeficiency virus-2. T cells express multiple members of the Ets gene family including Ets-1, Ets-2, GABP alpha, Elf-1, and Fli-1. The different patterns of expression and protein-protein interactions of these different Ets family members undoubtedly contribute to their ability to specifically regulate distinct sets of T cell genes. However, previous studies have suggested that different Ets family members might also display distinct DNA binding specificities. In this report, we have examined the DNA binding characteristics of two Ets family members, Ets-1 and Elf-1, that are highly expressed in T cells. The results demonstrate that the minimal DNA binding domain of these proteins consists of adjacent basic and putative alpha-helical regions that are conserved in all of the known Ets family members. Both regions are required for DNA binding activity. In vitro binding studies demonstrated that Ets-1 and Elf-1 display distinct DNA binding specificities, and, thereby interact preferentially with different naturally occurring Ets binding sites. A comparison of known Ets binding sites identified three nucleotides at the 3' end of these sequences that control the differential binding of the Ets-1 and Elf-1 proteins. These results are consistent with a model in which different Ets family members regulate the expression of different T cell genes by binding preferentially to purine-rich sequences that share a GGA core motif, but contain distinct flanking sequences

  11. Chicken T-cell receptor beta-chain diversity: an evolutionarily conserved D beta-encoded glycine turn within the hypervariable CDR3 domain.

    PubMed Central

    McCormack, W T; Tjoelker, L W; Stella, G; Postema, C E; Thompson, C B

    1991-01-01

    Unlike mammals, chickens generate an immunoglobulin (Ig) repertoire by a developmentally regulated process of intrachromosomal gene conversion, which results in nucleotide substitutions throughout the variable regions of the Ig heavy- and light-chain genes. In contrast to chicken Ig genes, we show in this report that diversity of the rearranged chicken T-cell receptor (TCR) beta-chain gene is generated by junctional heterogeneity, as observed in rearranged mammalian TCR genes. This junctional diversity increases during chicken development as a result of an increasing base-pair addition at the V beta-D beta and D beta-J beta joints (where V, D, and J are the variable, diversity, and joining gene segments). Despite the junctional hypervariability, however, almost all functional V beta-D beta-J beta junctions appear to encode a glycine-containing beta-turn. Such a turn may serve to position the amino acid side chains of a hypervariable TCR beta-chain loop with respect to the antigen-binding groove of the major histocompatibility complex molecule. Consistent with this hypothesis, the germ-line D beta nucleotide sequences of chickens, mice, rabbits, and humans have been highly conserved and encode a glycine in all three reading frames. Images PMID:1652759

  12. Two-ligand priming mechanism for potentiated phosphoinositide synthesis is an evolutionarily conserved feature of Sec14-like phosphatidylinositol and phosphatidylcholine exchange proteins

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Jin; Ghosh, Ratna; Tripathi, Ashutosh; Lönnfors, Max; Somerharju, Pentti; Bankaitis, Vytas A.

    2016-01-01

    Lipid signaling, particularly phosphoinositide signaling, plays a key role in regulating the extreme polarized membrane growth that drives root hair development in plants. The Arabidopsis AtSFH1 gene encodes a two-domain protein with an amino-terminal Sec14-like phosphatidylinositol transfer protein (PITP) domain linked to a carboxy-terminal nodulin domain. AtSfh1 is critical for promoting the spatially highly organized phosphatidylinositol-4,5-bisphosphate signaling program required for establishment and maintenance of polarized root hair growth. Here we demonstrate that, like the yeast Sec14, the AtSfh1 PITP domain requires both its phosphatidylinositol (PtdIns)- and phosphatidylcholine (PtdCho)-binding properties to stimulate PtdIns-4-phosphate [PtdIns(4)P] synthesis. Moreover, we show that both phospholipid-binding activities are essential for AtSfh1 activity in supporting polarized root hair growth. Finally, we report genetic and biochemical evidence that the two-ligand mechanism for potentiation of PtdIns 4-OH kinase activity is a broadly conserved feature of plant Sec14-nodulin proteins, and that this strategy appeared only late in plant evolution. Taken together, the data indicate that the PtdIns/PtdCho-exchange mechanism for stimulated PtdIns(4)P synthesis either arose independently during evolution in yeast and in higher plants, or a suitable genetic module was introduced to higher plants from a fungal source and subsequently exploited by them. PMID:27193303

  13. Evolutionarily Conserved Function of RRP36 in Early Cleavages of the Pre-rRNA and Production of the 40S Ribosomal Subunit ▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Gérus, Marie; Bonnart, Chrystelle; Caizergues-Ferrer, Michèle; Henry, Yves; Henras, Anthony K.

    2010-01-01

    Ribosome biogenesis in eukaryotes is a major cellular activity mobilizing the products of over 200 transcriptionally coregulated genes referred to as the rRNA and ribosome biosynthesis regulon. We investigated the function of an essential, uncharacterized gene of this regulon, renamed RRP36. We show that the Rrp36p protein is nucleolar and interacts with 90S and pre-40S preribosomal particles. Its depletion affects early cleavages of the 35S pre-rRNA and results in a rapid decrease in mature 18S rRNA levels. Rrp36p is a novel component of the 90S preribosome, the assembly of which has been suggested to result from the stepwise incorporation of several modules, including the tUTP/UTP-A, PWP2/UTP-B, and UTP-C subcomplexes. We show that Rrp36p depletion does not impair the incorporation of these subcomplexes and the U3 small nucleolar RNP into preribosomes. In contrast, depletion of components of the UTP-A or UTP-B modules, but not Rrp5p, prevents Rrp36p recruitment and reduces its accumulation levels. In parallel, we studied the human orthologue of Rrp36p in HeLa cells, and we show that the function of this protein in early cleavages of the pre-rRNA has been conserved through evolution in eukaryotes. PMID:20038530

  14. Conservation of Male Sterility 2 function during spore and pollen wall development supports an evolutionarily early recruitment of a core component in the sporopollenin biosynthetic pathway.

    PubMed

    Wallace, Simon; Chater, Caspar C; Kamisugi, Yasuko; Cuming, Andrew C; Wellman, Charles H; Beerling, David J; Fleming, Andrew J

    2015-01-01

    The early evolution of plants required the acquisition of a number of key adaptations to overcome physiological difficulties associated with survival on land. One of these was a tough sporopollenin wall that enclosed reproductive propagules and provided protection from desiccation and UV-B radiation. All land plants possess such walled spores (or their derived homologue, pollen). We took a reverse genetics approach, consisting of knock-out and complementation experiments to test the functional conservation of the sporopollenin-associated gene MALE STERILTY 2 (which is essential for pollen wall development in Arabidopsis thaliana) in the bryophyte Physcomitrella patens. Knock-outs of a putative moss homologue of the A. thaliana MS2 gene, which is highly expressed in the moss sporophyte, led to spores with highly defective walls comparable to that observed in the A. thaliana ms2 mutant, and extremely compromised germination. Conversely, the moss MS2 gene could not rescue the A. thaliana ms2 phenotype. The results presented here suggest that a core component of the biochemical and developmental pathway required for angiosperm pollen wall development was recruited early in land plant evolution but the continued increase in pollen wall complexity observed in angiosperms has been accompanied by divergence in MS2 gene function.

  15. The Evolutionarily Conserved C-terminal Domains in the Mammalian Retinoblastoma Tumor Suppressor Family Serve as Dual Regulators of Protein Stability and Transcriptional Potency*

    PubMed Central

    Sengupta, Satyaki; Lingnurkar, Raj; Carey, Timothy S.; Pomaville, Monica; Kar, Parimal; Feig, Michael; Wilson, Catherine A.; Knott, Jason G.; Arnosti, David N.; Henry, R. William

    2015-01-01

    The retinoblastoma (RB) tumor suppressor and related family of proteins play critical roles in development through their regulation of genes involved in cell fate. Multiple regulatory pathways impact RB function, including the ubiquitin-proteasome system with deregulated RB destruction frequently associated with pathogenesis. With the current study we explored the mechanisms connecting proteasome-mediated turnover of the RB family to the regulation of repressor activity. We find that steady state levels of all RB family members, RB, p107, and p130, were diminished during embryonic stem cell differentiation concomitant with their target gene acquisition. Proteasome-dependent turnover of the RB family is mediated by distinct and autonomously acting instability elements (IE) located in their C-terminal regulatory domains in a process that is sensitive to cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK4) perturbation. The IE regions include motifs that contribute to E2F-DP transcription factor interaction, and consistently, p107 and p130 repressor potency was reduced by IE deletion. The juxtaposition of degron sequences and E2F interaction motifs appears to be a conserved feature across the RB family, suggesting the potential for repressor ubiquitination and specific target gene regulation. These findings establish a mechanistic link between regulation of RB family repressor potency and the ubiquitin-proteasome system. PMID:25903125

  16. The Human Arp2/3 Complex Is Composed of Evolutionarily Conserved Subunits and Is Localized to Cellular Regions of Dynamic Actin Filament Assembly

    PubMed Central

    Welch, Matthew D.; DePace, Angela H.; Verma, Suzie; Iwamatsu, Akihiro; Mitchison, Timothy J.

    1997-01-01

    The Arp2/3 protein complex has been implicated in the control of actin polymerization in cells. The human complex consists of seven subunits which include the actin related proteins Arp2 and Arp3, and five others referred to as p41-Arc, p34-Arc, p21-Arc, p20-Arc, and p16-Arc (Arp complex). We have determined the predicted amino acid sequence of all seven subunits. Each has homologues in diverse eukaryotes, implying that the structure and function of the complex has been conserved through evolution. Human Arp2 and Arp3 are very similar to family members from other species. p41-Arc is a new member of the Sop2 family of WD (tryptophan and aspartate) repeat–containing proteins and may be posttranslationally modified, suggesting that it may be involved in regulating the activity and/or localization of the complex. p34-Arc, p21-Arc, p20-Arc, and p16-Arc define novel protein families. We sought to evaluate the function of the Arp2/3 complex in cells by determining its intracellular distribution. Arp3, p34-Arc, and p21-Arc were localized to the lamellipodia of stationary and locomoting fibroblasts, as well to Listeria monocytogenes assembled actin tails. They were not detected in cellular bundles of actin filaments. Taken together with the ability of the Arp2/3 complex to induce actin polymerization, these observations suggest that the complex promotes actin assembly in lamellipodia and may participate in lamellipodial protrusion. PMID:9230079

  17. The human Arp2/3 complex is composed of evolutionarily conserved subunits and is localized to cellular regions of dynamic actin filament assembly.

    PubMed

    Welch, M D; DePace, A H; Verma, S; Iwamatsu, A; Mitchison, T J

    1997-07-28

    The Arp2/3 protein complex has been implicated in the control of actin polymerization in cells. The human complex consists of seven subunits which include the actin related proteins Arp2 and Arp3, and five others referred to as p41-Arc, p34-Arc, p21-Arc, p20-Arc, and p16-Arc (p omplex). We have determined the predicted amino acid sequence of all seven subunits. Each has homologues in diverse eukaryotes, implying that the structure and function of the complex has been conserved through evolution. Human Arp2 and Arp3 are very similar to family members from other species. p41-Arc is a new member of the Sop2 family of WD (tryptophan and aspartate) repeat-containing proteins and may be posttranslationally modified, suggesting that it may be involved in regulating the activity and/or localization of the complex. p34-Arc, p21-Arc, p20-Arc, and p16-Arc define novel protein families. We sought to evaluate the function of the Arp2/3 complex in cells by determining its intracellular distribution. Arp3, p34-Arc, and p21-Arc were localized to the lamellipodia of stationary and locomoting fibroblasts, as well to Listeria monocytogenes assembled actin tails. They were not detected in cellular bundles of actin filaments. Taken together with the ability of the Arp2/3 complex to induce actin polymerization, these observations suggest that the complex promotes actin assembly in lamellipodia and may participate in lamellipodial protrusion.

  18. Coexpression of Escherichia coli obgE, Encoding the Evolutionarily Conserved Obg GTPase, with Ribosomal Proteins L21 and L27

    PubMed Central

    Maouche, Rim; Burgos, Hector L.; My, Laetitia; Viala, Julie P.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Multiple essential small GTPases are involved in the assembly of the ribosome or in the control of its activity. Among them, ObgE (CgtA) has been shown recently to act as a ribosome antiassociation factor that binds to ppGpp, a regulator whose best-known target is RNA polymerase. The present study was aimed at elucidating the expression of obgE in Escherichia coli. We show that obgE is cotranscribed with ribosomal protein genes rplU and rpmA and with a gene of unknown function, yhbE. We show here that about 75% of the transcripts terminate before obgE, because there is a transcriptional terminator between rpmA and yhbE. As expected for ribosomal protein operons, expression was highest during exponential growth, decreased during entry into stationary phase, and became almost undetectable thereafter. Expression of the operon was derepressed in mutants lacking ppGpp or DksA. However, regulation by these factors appears to occur post-transcription initiation, since no effects of ppGpp and DksA on rplU promoter activity were observed in vitro. IMPORTANCE The conserved and essential ObgE GTPase binds to the ribosome and affects its assembly. ObgE has also been reported to impact chromosome segregation, cell division, resistance to DNA damage, and, perhaps most interestingly, persister formation and antibiotic tolerance. However, it is unclear whether these effects are related to its role in ribosome formation. Despite its importance, no studies on ObgE expression have been reported. We demonstrate here that obgE is expressed from an operon encoding two ribosomal proteins, that the operon's expression varies with the growth phase, and that it is dependent on the transcription regulators ppGpp and DksA. Our results thus demonstrate that obgE expression is coupled to ribosomal gene expression. PMID:27137500

  19. Comparative genomic analysis of evolutionarily conserved but functionally uncharacterized membrane proteins in archaea: Prediction of novel components of secretion, membrane remodeling and glycosylation systems.

    PubMed

    Makarova, Kira S; Galperin, Michael Y; Koonin, Eugene V

    2015-11-01

    A systematic comparative genomic analysis of all archaeal membrane proteins that have been projected to the last archaeal common ancestor gene set led to the identification of several novel components of predicted secretion, membrane remodeling, and protein glycosylation systems. Among other findings, most crenarchaea have been shown to encode highly diverged orthologs of the membrane insertase YidC, which is nearly universal in bacteria, eukaryotes, and euryarchaea. We also identified a vast family of archaeal proteins, including the C-terminal domain of N-glycosylation protein AglD, as membrane flippases homologous to the flippase domain of bacterial multipeptide resistance factor MprF, a bifunctional lysylphosphatidylglycerol synthase and flippase. Additionally, several proteins were predicted to function as membrane transporters. The results of this work, combined with our previous analyses, reveal an unexpected diversity of putative archaeal membrane-associated functional systems that remain to be functionally characterized. A more general conclusion from this work is that the currently available collection of archaeal (and bacterial) genomes could be sufficient to identify (almost) all widespread functional modules and develop experimentally testable predictions of their functions.

  20. Krüppel-like Factor 11 Regulates the Expression of Metabolic Genes via an Evolutionarily Conserved Protein Interaction Domain Functionally Disrupted in Maturity Onset Diabetes of the Young*

    PubMed Central

    Lomberk, Gwen; Grzenda, Adrienne; Mathison, Angela; Escande, Carlos; Zhang, Jin-San; Calvo, Ezequiel; Miller, Laurence J.; Iovanna, Juan; Chini, Eduardo N.; Fernandez-Zapico, Martin E.; Urrutia, Raul

    2013-01-01

    The function of Krüppel-like factor 11 (KLF11) in the regulation of metabolic pathways is conserved from flies to human. Alterations in KLF11 function result in maturity onset diabetes of the young 7 (MODY7) and neonatal diabetes; however, the mechanisms underlying the role of this protein in metabolic disorders remain unclear. Here, we investigated how the A347S genetic variant, present in MODY7 patients, modulates KLF11 transcriptional activity. A347S affects a previously identified transcriptional regulatory domain 3 (TRD3) for which co-regulators remain unknown. Structure-oriented sequence analyses described here predicted that the KLF11 TRD3 represents an evolutionarily conserved protein domain. Combined yeast two-hybrid and protein array experiments demonstrated that the TRD3 binds WD40, WWI, WWII, and SH3 domain-containing proteins. Using one of these proteins as a model, guanine nucleotide-binding protein β2 (Gβ2), we investigated the functional consequences of KLF11 coupling to a TRD3 binding partner. Combined immunoprecipitation and biomolecular fluorescence complementation assays confirmed that activation of three different metabolic G protein-coupled receptors (β-adrenergic, secretin, and cholecystokinin) induces translocation of Gβ2 to the nucleus where it directly binds KLF11 in a manner that is disrupted by the MODY7 A347S variant. Using genome-wide expression profiles, we identified metabolic gene networks impacted upon TRD3 disruption. Furthermore, A347S disrupted KLF11-mediated increases in basal insulin levels and promoter activity and blunted glucose-stimulated insulin secretion. Thus, this study characterizes a novel protein/protein interaction domain disrupted in a KLF gene variant that associates to MODY7, contributing to our understanding of gene regulation events in complex metabolic diseases. PMID:23589285

  1. Krüppel-like factor 11 regulates the expression of metabolic genes via an evolutionarily conserved protein interaction domain functionally disrupted in maturity onset diabetes of the young.

    PubMed

    Lomberk, Gwen; Grzenda, Adrienne; Mathison, Angela; Escande, Carlos; Zhang, Jin-San; Calvo, Ezequiel; Miller, Laurence J; Iovanna, Juan; Chini, Eduardo N; Fernandez-Zapico, Martin E; Urrutia, Raul

    2013-06-14

    The function of Krüppel-like factor 11 (KLF11) in the regulation of metabolic pathways is conserved from flies to human. Alterations in KLF11 function result in maturity onset diabetes of the young 7 (MODY7) and neonatal diabetes; however, the mechanisms underlying the role of this protein in metabolic disorders remain unclear. Here, we investigated how the A347S genetic variant, present in MODY7 patients, modulates KLF11 transcriptional activity. A347S affects a previously identified transcriptional regulatory domain 3 (TRD3) for which co-regulators remain unknown. Structure-oriented sequence analyses described here predicted that the KLF11 TRD3 represents an evolutionarily conserved protein domain. Combined yeast two-hybrid and protein array experiments demonstrated that the TRD3 binds WD40, WWI, WWII, and SH3 domain-containing proteins. Using one of these proteins as a model, guanine nucleotide-binding protein β2 (Gβ2), we investigated the functional consequences of KLF11 coupling to a TRD3 binding partner. Combined immunoprecipitation and biomolecular fluorescence complementation assays confirmed that activation of three different metabolic G protein-coupled receptors (β-adrenergic, secretin, and cholecystokinin) induces translocation of Gβ2 to the nucleus where it directly binds KLF11 in a manner that is disrupted by the MODY7 A347S variant. Using genome-wide expression profiles, we identified metabolic gene networks impacted upon TRD3 disruption. Furthermore, A347S disrupted KLF11-mediated increases in basal insulin levels and promoter activity and blunted glucose-stimulated insulin secretion. Thus, this study characterizes a novel protein/protein interaction domain disrupted in a KLF gene variant that associates to MODY7, contributing to our understanding of gene regulation events in complex metabolic diseases.

  2. Conserved intergenic sequences revealed by CTAG-profiling in Salmonella: thermodynamic modeling for function prediction

    PubMed Central

    Tang, Le; Zhu, Songling; Mastriani, Emilio; Fang, Xin; Zhou, Yu-Jie; Li, Yong-Guo; Johnston, Randal N.; Guo, Zheng; Liu, Gui-Rong; Liu, Shu-Lin

    2017-01-01

    Highly conserved short sequences help identify functional genomic regions and facilitate genomic annotation. We used Salmonella as the model to search the genome for evolutionarily conserved regions and focused on the tetranucleotide sequence CTAG for its potentially important functions. In Salmonella, CTAG is highly conserved across the lineages and large numbers of CTAG-containing short sequences fall in intergenic regions, strongly indicating their biological importance. Computer modeling demonstrated stable stem-loop structures in some of the CTAG-containing intergenic regions, and substitution of a nucleotide of the CTAG sequence would radically rearrange the free energy and disrupt the structure. The postulated degeneration of CTAG takes distinct patterns among Salmonella lineages and provides novel information about genomic divergence and evolution of these bacterial pathogens. Comparison of the vertically and horizontally transmitted genomic segments showed different CTAG distribution landscapes, with the genome amelioration process to remove CTAG taking place inward from both terminals of the horizontally acquired segment. PMID:28262684

  3. Conserved intergenic sequences revealed by CTAG-profiling in Salmonella: thermodynamic modeling for function prediction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tang, Le; Zhu, Songling; Mastriani, Emilio; Fang, Xin; Zhou, Yu-Jie; Li, Yong-Guo; Johnston, Randal N.; Guo, Zheng; Liu, Gui-Rong; Liu, Shu-Lin

    2017-03-01

    Highly conserved short sequences help identify functional genomic regions and facilitate genomic annotation. We used Salmonella as the model to search the genome for evolutionarily conserved regions and focused on the tetranucleotide sequence CTAG for its potentially important functions. In Salmonella, CTAG is highly conserved across the lineages and large numbers of CTAG-containing short sequences fall in intergenic regions, strongly indicating their biological importance. Computer modeling demonstrated stable stem-loop structures in some of the CTAG-containing intergenic regions, and substitution of a nucleotide of the CTAG sequence would radically rearrange the free energy and disrupt the structure. The postulated degeneration of CTAG takes distinct patterns among Salmonella lineages and provides novel information about genomic divergence and evolution of these bacterial pathogens. Comparison of the vertically and horizontally transmitted genomic segments showed different CTAG distribution landscapes, with the genome amelioration process to remove CTAG taking place inward from both terminals of the horizontally acquired segment.

  4. Conserved intergenic sequences revealed by CTAG-profiling in Salmonella: thermodynamic modeling for function prediction.

    PubMed

    Tang, Le; Zhu, Songling; Mastriani, Emilio; Fang, Xin; Zhou, Yu-Jie; Li, Yong-Guo; Johnston, Randal N; Guo, Zheng; Liu, Gui-Rong; Liu, Shu-Lin

    2017-03-06

    Highly conserved short sequences help identify functional genomic regions and facilitate genomic annotation. We used Salmonella as the model to search the genome for evolutionarily conserved regions and focused on the tetranucleotide sequence CTAG for its potentially important functions. In Salmonella, CTAG is highly conserved across the lineages and large numbers of CTAG-containing short sequences fall in intergenic regions, strongly indicating their biological importance. Computer modeling demonstrated stable stem-loop structures in some of the CTAG-containing intergenic regions, and substitution of a nucleotide of the CTAG sequence would radically rearrange the free energy and disrupt the structure. The postulated degeneration of CTAG takes distinct patterns among Salmonella lineages and provides novel information about genomic divergence and evolution of these bacterial pathogens. Comparison of the vertically and horizontally transmitted genomic segments showed different CTAG distribution landscapes, with the genome amelioration process to remove CTAG taking place inward from both terminals of the horizontally acquired segment.

  5. Structural and biophysical analysis of BST-2/tetherin ectodomains reveals an evolutionary conserved design to inhibit virus release.

    PubMed

    Swiecki, Melissa; Scheaffer, Suzanne M; Allaire, Marc; Fremont, Daved H; Colonna, Marco; Brett, Tom J

    2011-01-28

    BST-2/tetherin is a host antiviral molecule that functions to potently inhibit the release of enveloped viruses from infected cells. In return, viruses have evolved antagonists to this activity. BST-2 traps budding virions by using two separate membrane-anchoring regions that simultaneously incorporate into the host and viral membranes. Here, we detailed the structural and biophysical properties of the full-length BST-2 ectodomain, which spans the two membrane anchors. The 1.6-Å crystal structure of the complete mouse BST-2 ectodomain reveals an ∼145-Å parallel dimer in an extended α-helix conformation that predominantly forms a coiled coil bridged by three intermolecular disulfides that are required for stability. Sequence analysis in the context of the structure revealed an evolutionarily conserved design that destabilizes the coiled coil, resulting in a labile superstructure, as evidenced by solution x-ray scattering displaying bent conformations spanning 150 and 180 Å for the mouse and human BST-2 ectodomains, respectively. Additionally, crystal packing analysis revealed possible curvature-sensing tetrameric structures that may aid in proper placement of BST-2 during the genesis of viral progeny. Overall, this extended coiled-coil structure with inherent plasticity is undoubtedly necessary to accommodate the dynamics of viral budding while ensuring separation of the anchors.

  6. Structural and Biophysical Analysis of BST-2/Tetherin Ectodomains Reveals an Evolutionary Conserved Design to Inhibit Virus Release

    PubMed Central

    Swiecki, Melissa; Scheaffer, Suzanne M.; Allaire, Marc; Fremont, Daved H.; Colonna, Marco; Brett, Tom J.

    2011-01-01

    BST-2/tetherin is a host antiviral molecule that functions to potently inhibit the release of enveloped viruses from infected cells. In return, viruses have evolved antagonists to this activity. BST-2 traps budding virions by using two separate membrane-anchoring regions that simultaneously incorporate into the host and viral membranes. Here, we detailed the structural and biophysical properties of the full-length BST-2 ectodomain, which spans the two membrane anchors. The 1.6-Å crystal structure of the complete mouse BST-2 ectodomain reveals an ∼145-Å parallel dimer in an extended α-helix conformation that predominantly forms a coiled coil bridged by three intermolecular disulfides that are required for stability. Sequence analysis in the context of the structure revealed an evolutionarily conserved design that destabilizes the coiled coil, resulting in a labile superstructure, as evidenced by solution x-ray scattering displaying bent conformations spanning 150 and 180 Å for the mouse and human BST-2 ectodomains, respectively. Additionally, crystal packing analysis revealed possible curvature-sensing tetrameric structures that may aid in proper placement of BST-2 during the genesis of viral progeny. Overall, this extended coiled-coil structure with inherent plasticity is undoubtedly necessary to accommodate the dynamics of viral budding while ensuring separation of the anchors. PMID:21084286

  7. Laser microsurgery reveals conserved viscoelastic behavior of the kinetochore

    PubMed Central

    Cojoc, Gheorghe; Roscioli, Emanuele; Zhang, Lijuan; García-Ulloa, Alfonso; Shah, Jagesh V.; Berns, Michael W.; Pavin, Nenad

    2016-01-01

    Accurate chromosome segregation depends on proper kinetochore–microtubule attachment. Upon microtubule interaction, kinetochores are subjected to forces generated by the microtubules. In this work, we used laser ablation to sever microtubules attached to a merotelic kinetochore, which is laterally stretched by opposing pulling forces exerted by microtubules, and inferred the mechanical response of the kinetochore from its length change. In both mammalian PtK1 cells and in the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe, kinetochores shortened after microtubule severing. Interestingly, the inner kinetochore–centromere relaxed faster than the outer kinetochore. Whereas in fission yeast all kinetochores relaxed to a similar length, in PtK1 cells the more stretched kinetochores remained more stretched. Simple models suggest that these differences arise because the mechanical structure of the mammalian kinetochore is more complex. Our study establishes merotelic kinetochores as an experimental model for studying the mechanical response of the kinetochore in live cells and reveals a viscoelastic behavior of the kinetochore that is conserved in yeast and mammalian cells. PMID:27002163

  8. High-Throughput Sequencing Reveals Diverse Sets of Conserved, Nonconserved, and Species-Specific miRNAs in Jute.

    PubMed

    Islam, Md Tariqul; Ferdous, Ahlan Sabah; Najnin, Rifat Ara; Sarker, Suprovath Kumar; Khan, Haseena

    2015-01-01

    MicroRNAs play a pivotal role in regulating a broad range of biological processes, acting by cleaving mRNAs or by translational repression. A group of plant microRNAs are evolutionarily conserved; however, others are expressed in a species-specific manner. Jute is an agroeconomically important fibre crop; nonetheless, no practical information is available for microRNAs in jute to date. In this study, Illumina sequencing revealed a total of 227 known microRNAs and 17 potential novel microRNA candidates in jute, of which 164 belong to 23 conserved families and the remaining 63 belong to 58 nonconserved families. Among a total of 81 identified microRNA families, 116 potential target genes were predicted for 39 families and 11 targets were predicted for 4 among the 17 identified novel microRNAs. For understanding better the functions of microRNAs, target genes were analyzed by Gene Ontology and their pathways illustrated by KEGG pathway analyses. The presence of microRNAs identified in jute was validated by stem-loop RT-PCR followed by end point PCR and qPCR for randomly selected 20 known and novel microRNAs. This study exhaustively identifies microRNAs and their target genes in jute which will ultimately pave the way for understanding their role in this crop and other crops.

  9. High-Throughput Sequencing Reveals Diverse Sets of Conserved, Nonconserved, and Species-Specific miRNAs in Jute

    PubMed Central

    Islam, Md. Tariqul; Ferdous, Ahlan Sabah; Najnin, Rifat Ara; Sarker, Suprovath Kumar; Khan, Haseena

    2015-01-01

    MicroRNAs play a pivotal role in regulating a broad range of biological processes, acting by cleaving mRNAs or by translational repression. A group of plant microRNAs are evolutionarily conserved; however, others are expressed in a species-specific manner. Jute is an agroeconomically important fibre crop; nonetheless, no practical information is available for microRNAs in jute to date. In this study, Illumina sequencing revealed a total of 227 known microRNAs and 17 potential novel microRNA candidates in jute, of which 164 belong to 23 conserved families and the remaining 63 belong to 58 nonconserved families. Among a total of 81 identified microRNA families, 116 potential target genes were predicted for 39 families and 11 targets were predicted for 4 among the 17 identified novel microRNAs. For understanding better the functions of microRNAs, target genes were analyzed by Gene Ontology and their pathways illustrated by KEGG pathway analyses. The presence of microRNAs identified in jute was validated by stem-loop RT-PCR followed by end point PCR and qPCR for randomly selected 20 known and novel microRNAs. This study exhaustively identifies microRNAs and their target genes in jute which will ultimately pave the way for understanding their role in this crop and other crops. PMID:25861616

  10. Functional Constraint Profiling of a Viral Protein Reveals Discordance of Evolutionary Conservation and Functionality

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Nicholas C.; Olson, C. Anders; Du, Yushen; Le, Shuai; Tran, Kevin; Remenyi, Roland; Gong, Danyang; Al-Mawsawi, Laith Q.; Qi, Hangfei; Wu, Ting-Ting; Sun, Ren

    2015-01-01

    Viruses often encode proteins with multiple functions due to their compact genomes. Existing approaches to identify functional residues largely rely on sequence conservation analysis. Inferring functional residues from sequence conservation can produce false positives, in which the conserved residues are functionally silent, or false negatives, where functional residues are not identified since they are species-specific and therefore non-conserved. Furthermore, the tedious process of constructing and analyzing individual mutations limits the number of residues that can be examined in a single study. Here, we developed a systematic approach to identify the functional residues of a viral protein by coupling experimental fitness profiling with protein stability prediction using the influenza virus polymerase PA subunit as the target protein. We identified a significant number of functional residues that were influenza type-specific and were evolutionarily non-conserved among different influenza types. Our results indicate that type-specific functional residues are prevalent and may not otherwise be identified by sequence conservation analysis alone. More importantly, this technique can be adapted to any viral (and potentially non-viral) protein where structural information is available. PMID:26132554

  11. A novel fragile X syndrome mutation reveals a conserved role for the carboxy-terminus in FMRP localization and function.

    PubMed

    Okray, Zeynep; de Esch, Celine E F; Van Esch, Hilde; Devriendt, Koen; Claeys, Annelies; Yan, Jiekun; Verbeeck, Jelle; Froyen, Guy; Willemsen, Rob; de Vrij, Femke M S; Hassan, Bassem A

    2015-04-01

    Loss of function of the FMR1 gene leads to fragile X syndrome (FXS), the most common form of intellectual disability. The loss of FMR1 function is usually caused by epigenetic silencing of the FMR1 promoter leading to expansion and subsequent methylation of a CGG repeat in the 5' untranslated region. Very few coding sequence variations have been experimentally characterized and shown to be causal to the disease. Here, we describe a novel FMR1 mutation and reveal an unexpected nuclear export function for the C-terminus of FMRP. We screened a cohort of patients with typical FXS symptoms who tested negative for CGG repeat expansion in the FMR1 locus. In one patient, we identified a guanine insertion in FMR1 exon 15. This mutation alters the open reading frame creating a short novel C-terminal sequence, followed by a stop codon. We find that this novel peptide encodes a functional nuclear localization signal (NLS) targeting the patient FMRP to the nucleolus in human cells. We also reveal an evolutionarily conserved nuclear export function associated with the endogenous C-terminus of FMRP. In vivo analyses in Drosophila demonstrate that a patient-mimetic mutation alters the localization and function of Dfmrp in neurons, leading to neomorphic neuronal phenotypes.

  12. Thioredoxins in evolutionarily primitive organisms

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Buchanan, B. B.

    1986-01-01

    Thioredoxins are low molecular weight redox proteins, alternating between the S-S (oxidized) and SH (reduced) states, that function in a number of biochemical processes, including DNA synthesis, DNA replication, and enzyme regulation. Until recently, reduced ferredoxin was known to serve as the source of reducing power for the reduction of thioredoxins only in oxygenic photosynthetic cells. In all other organisms, the source of hydrogen (electrons) for thioredoxin reduction was considered to be NADPH. It was found that Clostridium pasteurianum, an anaerobic organism normally living in the soil unexposed to light, resembles photosynthetic cells in using ferredoxin for the reduction of thioredoxin. The results reveal the existence of a pathway in which ferredoxin, provides the reducing power for the reduction of thioredoxin via the flavoprotein enzyme, ferredoxinthioredoxin reductase. In related studies, it was found that Chromatium vinosum, an anaerobic photosynthetic purple sulfur bacterium, resembles evolutionarily more advanced micro-organisms in having an NADP-thioredoxin system composed of a single thioredoxin which is reduced by NADPH via NADP-thioredoxin reductase. The adoption of the NADP-thioredoxin system by Chromatium seems appropriate in view of evidence tha the organi sm utilizes ATP-driven reverse electron transport. Finally, results of research directed towards the identification of target enzymes of the ferredoxin/thioredoxin system in a cyanobacterium (Nostoc muscorum), show that thioredoxin-linked photosynthetic enzymes of cyanobateria are similar to those of chloroplasts. It now seems that the ferredoxin/thioredoxin system functions in regulating CO2 assimilation via the reductive pentose phosphate cycle in oxygenic but not anoxygenic photosynthetic cells.

  13. Advancing Eucalyptus Genomics: Cytogenomics Reveals Conservation of Eucalyptus Genomes

    PubMed Central

    Ribeiro, Teresa; Barrela, Ricardo M.; Bergès, Hélène; Marques, Cristina; Loureiro, João; Morais-Cecílio, Leonor; Paiva, Jorge A. P.

    2016-01-01

    The genus Eucalyptus encloses several species with high ecological and economic value, being the subgenus Symphyomyrtus one of the most important. Species such as E. grandis and E. globulus are well characterized at the molecular level but knowledge regarding genome and chromosome organization is very scarce. Here we characterized and compared the karyotypes of three economically important species, E. grandis, E. globulus, and E. calmadulensis, and three with ecological relevance, E. pulverulenta, E. cornuta, and E. occidentalis, through an integrative approach including genome size estimation, fluorochrome banding, rDNA FISH, and BAC landing comprising genes involved in lignin biosynthesis. All karyotypes show a high degree of conservation with pericentromeric 35S and 5S rDNA loci in the first and third pairs, respectively. GC-rich heterochromatin was restricted to the 35S rDNA locus while the AT-rich heterochromatin pattern was species-specific. The slight differences in karyotype formulas and distribution of AT-rich heterochromatin, along with genome sizes estimations, support the idea of Eucalyptus genome evolution by local expansions of heterochromatin clusters. The unusual co-localization of both rDNA with AT-rich heterochromatin was attributed mainly to the presence of silent transposable elements in those loci. The cinnamoyl CoA reductase gene (CCR1) previously assessed to linkage group 10 (LG10) was clearly localized distally at the long arm of chromosome 9 establishing an unexpected correlation between the cytogenetic chromosome 9 and the LG10. Our work is novel and contributes to the understanding of Eucalyptus genome organization which is essential to develop successful advanced breeding strategies for this genus. PMID:27148332

  14. Protein sequence conservation and stable molecular evolution reveals influenza virus nucleoprotein as a universal druggable target.

    PubMed

    Babar, Mustafeez Mujtaba; Zaidi, Najam-us-Sahar Sadaf

    2015-08-01

    The high mutation rate in influenza virus genome and appearance of drug resistance calls for a constant effort to identify alternate drug targets and develop new antiviral strategies. The internal proteins of the virus can be exploited as a potential target for therapeutic interventions. Among these, the nucleoprotein (NP) is the most abundant protein that provides structural and functional support to the viral replication machinery. The current study aims at analysis of protein sequence polymorphism patterns, degree of molecular evolution and sequence conservation as a function of potential druggability of nucleoprotein. We analyzed a universal set of amino acid sequences, (n=22,000) and, in order to identify and correlate the functionally conserved, druggable regions across different parameters, classified them on the basis of host organism, strain type and continental region of sample isolation. The results indicated that around 95% of the sequence length was conserved, with at least 7 regions conserved across the protein among various classes. Moreover, the highly variable regions, though very limited in number, were found to be positively selected indicating, thereby, the high degree of protein stability against various hosts and spatio-temporal references. Furthermore, on mapping the conserved regions on the protein, 7 drug binding pockets in the functionally important regions of the protein were revealed. The results, therefore, collectively indicate that nucleoprotein is a highly conserved and stable viral protein that can potentially be exploited for development of broadly effective antiviral strategies.

  15. Conservation and rewiring of functional modules revealed by an epistasis map in fission yeast.

    PubMed

    Roguev, Assen; Bandyopadhyay, Sourav; Zofall, Martin; Zhang, Ke; Fischer, Tamas; Collins, Sean R; Qu, Hongjing; Shales, Michael; Park, Han-Oh; Hayles, Jacqueline; Hoe, Kwang-Lae; Kim, Dong-Uk; Ideker, Trey; Grewal, Shiv I; Weissman, Jonathan S; Krogan, Nevan J

    2008-10-17

    An epistasis map (E-MAP) was constructed in the fission yeast, Schizosaccharomyces pombe, by systematically measuring the phenotypes associated with pairs of mutations. This high-density, quantitative genetic interaction map focused on various aspects of chromosome function, including transcription regulation and DNA repair/replication. The E-MAP uncovered a previously unidentified component of the RNA interference (RNAi) machinery (rsh1) and linked the RNAi pathway to several other biological processes. Comparison of the S. pombe E-MAP to an analogous genetic map from the budding yeast revealed that, whereas negative interactions were conserved between genes involved in similar biological processes, positive interactions and overall genetic profiles between pairs of genes coding for physically associated proteins were even more conserved. Hence, conservation occurs at the level of the functional module (protein complex), but the genetic cross talk between modules can differ substantially.

  16. Regeneration in an evolutionarily primitive brain--the planarian Dugesia japonica model.

    PubMed

    Umesono, Yoshihiko; Tasaki, Junichi; Nishimura, Kaneyasu; Inoue, Takeshi; Agata, Kiyokazu

    2011-09-01

    A unique aspect of planarians is that they can regenerate a brain from somatic pluripotent stem cells called neoblasts, which have the ability to produce themselves (self-renew) and to give rise to all missing cell types during regeneration. Recent molecular studies have revealed that the planarian brain is composed of many distinct neuronal populations, which are evolutionarily and functionally conserved ones, and acts as an information-processing center to elicit distinct behavioral traits depending on a variety of signals arising from the external environment. How can planarians regenerate such a brain? On the basis of our recent findings, here we review the cellular and molecular mechanisms that regulate the stem cell dynamics involved in the brain regeneration of the planarian Dugesia japonica. Our findings suggest the possible value of in vivo planarian studies for guiding regenerative medicine to treat neurodegenerative diseases via interlinking stem cell biology and regeneration biology.

  17. Identification of essential Alphaproteobacterial genes reveals operational variability in conserved developmental and cell cycle systems

    PubMed Central

    Curtis, Patrick D.; Brun, Yves V.

    2014-01-01

    Summary The cell cycle of Caulobacter crescentus is controlled by a complex signaling network that coordinates events. Genome sequencing has revealed many C. crescentus cell cycle genes are conserved in other Alphaproteobacteria, but it is not clear to what extent their function is conserved. As many cell cycle regulatory genes are essential in C. crescentus, the essential genes of two Alphaproteobacteria, Agrobacterium tumefaciens (Rhizobiales) and Brevundimonas subvibrioides (Caulobacterales), were elucidated to identify changes in cell cycle protein function over different phylogenetic distances as demonstrated by changes in essentiality. The results show the majority of conserved essential genes are involved in critical cell cycle processes. Changes in component essentiality reflect major changes in lifestyle, such as divisome components in A. tumefaciens resulting from that organism’s different growth pattern. Larger variability of essentiality was observed in cell cycle regulators, suggesting regulatory mechanisms are more customizable than the processes they regulate. Examples include variability in the essentiality of divJ and divK spatial cell cycle regulators, and non-essentiality of the highly conserved and usually essential DNA methyltransferase CcrM. These results show that while essential cell functions are conserved across varying genetic distance, much of a given organism’s essential gene pool is specific to that organism. PMID:24975755

  18. Assignment of human myocyte-specific enhancer binding factor 2C (hMEF2C) to human chromosome 5q14 and evidence that MEF2C is evolutionarily conserved

    SciTech Connect

    Krainc, D.; Lipton, S.A.; Haas, M.; Ward, D.C.

    1995-10-10

    Human myocyte-specific enhancer binding factor 2C (hMEF2C) belongs to the MEF2 subfamily of the MADS (MCM1, AGAMOUS, DEF A, serum response factor) family of transcription factors. Members of the MADS family share a conserved domain - the MADS domain - that is necessary for DNA binding. Highly conserved versions of the MADS domain and of an adjacent domain that is known as the MEF2 domain are found in members of the MEF2 subfamily. Both of these domains are necessary for binding to the MEF2 regulatory element. This regulatory element is known to be functionally important in a variety of muscle-specific genes and possibly in the brain creatine kinase gene. The MEF2C gene product activates transcription by binding to the MEF2 element. hMEF2C is expressed at high levels in postmitotic neurons in the brain, where it is most abundant in the cerebral cortex, and is also expressed in differentiated myotubes. Several lines of evidence suggest the existence of a rat homologue of MEF2C, and a mouse homologue has been cloned. The mouse gene was mapped to mouse chromosome 13 in a region that is syntenic to human 5q13-q15. 12 refs., 1 fig.

  19. Comparative genomics reveals conservative evolution of the xylem transcriptome in vascular plants

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Wood is a valuable natural resource and a major carbon sink. Wood formation is an important developmental process in vascular plants which played a crucial role in plant evolution. Although genes involved in xylem formation have been investigated, the molecular mechanisms of xylem evolution are not well understood. We use comparative genomics to examine evolution of the xylem transcriptome to gain insights into xylem evolution. Results The xylem transcriptome is highly conserved in conifers, but considerably divergent in angiosperms. The functional domains of genes in the xylem transcriptome are moderately to highly conserved in vascular plants, suggesting the existence of a common ancestral xylem transcriptome. Compared to the total transcriptome derived from a range of tissues, the xylem transcriptome is relatively conserved in vascular plants. Of the xylem transcriptome, cell wall genes, ancestral xylem genes, known proteins and transcription factors are relatively more conserved in vascular plants. A total of 527 putative xylem orthologs were identified, which are unevenly distributed across the Arabidopsis chromosomes with eight hot spots observed. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that evolution of the xylem transcriptome has paralleled plant evolution. We also identified 274 conifer-specific xylem unigenes, all of which are of unknown function. These xylem orthologs and conifer-specific unigenes are likely to have played a crucial role in xylem evolution. Conclusions Conifers have highly conserved xylem transcriptomes, while angiosperm xylem transcriptomes are relatively diversified. Vascular plants share a common ancestral xylem transcriptome. The xylem transcriptomes of vascular plants are more conserved than the total transcriptomes. Evolution of the xylem transcriptome has largely followed the trend of plant evolution. PMID:20565927

  20. Comparative developmental analysis of Drosophila and Tribolium reveals conserved and diverged roles of abrupt in insect wing evolution.

    PubMed

    Ravisankar, Padmapriyadarshini; Lai, Yi-Ting; Sambrani, Nagraj; Tomoyasu, Yoshinori

    2016-01-15

    Morphological innovation is a fundamental process in evolution, yet its molecular basis is still elusive. Acquisition of elytra, highly modified beetle forewings, is an important innovation that has driven the successful radiation of beetles. Our RNAi screening for candidate genes has identified abrupt (ab) as a potential key player in elytron evolution. In this study, we performed a series of RNA interference (RNAi) experiments in both Tribolium and Drosophila to understand the contributions of ab to the evolution of beetle elytra. We found that (i) ab is essential for proper wing vein patterning both in Tribolium and Drosophila, (ii) ab has gained a novel function in determining the unique elytron shape in the beetle lineage, (iii) unlike Hippo and Insulin, other shape determining pathways, the shape determining function of ab is specific to the elytron and not required in the hindwing, (iv) ab has a previously undescribed role in the Notch signal-associated wing formation processes, which appears to be conserved between beetles and flies. These data suggest that ab has gained a new function during elytron evolution in beetles without compromising the conserved wing-related functions. Gaining a new function without losing evolutionarily conserved functions may be a key theme in the evolution of morphologically novel structures.

  1. Conservation of hydrophobicity within viral envelope glycoproteins reveals a putative hepatitis C virus fusion peptide.

    PubMed

    Taylor, A; O'Leary, J M; Pollock, S; Zitzmann, N

    2009-01-01

    The mechanism(s) by which hepatitis C virus (HCV) enters and infects cells remains unknown. Identifying the HCV fusion peptide(s) and understanding the early stages of infection may provide new opportunities for improved antiviral therapy. The HCV envelope glycoprotein E2 is thought to be a class II fusion protein. Class II fusion proteins are exemplified by the E protein of the tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV) and the E1 protein of the Semliki Forest virus (SFV). Analysis of the hydrophobicity profiles of four HCV E2 envelope glycoproteins revealed a region with a conserved three-pronged pattern of hydrophobicity, termed the tridentate (TD) region. The primary sequence of the TD region is highly conserved in all 490 HCV strains currently reported. The known fusion peptide loops of TBEV and SFV share the characteristic TD region hydrophobicity profile and significant sequence conservation in the TD region was identified in the E and E1 glycoproteins of members of the Flaviviridae and Togaviridae families, respectively. The HCV TD region peptides have membranotropic activity; in molecular dynamics (MD) simulations, the HCV TD region peptides insert into in a biomimetic bilayer in a similar manner to the TBEV fusion peptide and the peptides induce effective mixing of lipid membranes in a liposome fusion assay. Together these results indicate that the highly conserved TD region of the HCV E2 protein is a fusion peptide candidate and may be an important factor in the class II fusion mechanism.

  2. The endopeptidase activity and the activation by Cl- of angiotensin-converting enzyme is evolutionarily conserved: purification and properties of an an angiotensin-converting enzyme from the housefly, Musca domestica.

    PubMed Central

    Lamango, N S; Sajid, M; Isaac, R E

    1996-01-01

    A soluble 67 kDa angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) has been purified by lisinopril-Sepharose affinity column chromatography from adult houseflies, Musca domestica. The dipeptidyl carboxypeptidase activity towards benzoyl-Gly-His-Leu was inhibited by captopril (IC50 50 nM) and fosinoprilat (IC50 251 nM), two inhibitors of mammalian ACE, and was activated by Cl- (optimal Cl- concentration 600 mM). Musca ACE removed C-terminal dipeptides from angiotensin I, bradykinin [Leu5]enkephalin and [Met5]enkephalin and also functioned as an endopeptidase by hydrolysing dipeptideamides from [Leu5]enkephalinamide and [Met5]enkephalinamide, and a dipeptideamide and a tripeptideamide from substance P. Musca ACE was also able to cleave a tripeptide from both the N-terminus and C-terminus of luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone, with C-terminal hydrolysis predominating. Maximal N-terminal tripeptidase activity occurred at 150 mM NaCl, whereas the C-terminal tripeptidase activity continued to rise with increasing concentration of Cl- (0-0.5 M). Musca ACE displays properties of both the N- and C-domains of human ACE, indicating a high degree of conservation during evolution of the substrate specificity of ACE and its response to Cl-. PMID:8670080

  3. Comparative Analysis of P450 Signature Motifs EXXR and CXG in the Large and Diverse Kingdom of Fungi: Identification of Evolutionarily Conserved Amino Acid Patterns Characteristic of P450 Family

    PubMed Central

    Syed, Khajamohiddin; Mashele, Samson Sitheni

    2014-01-01

    Cytochrome P450 monooxygenases (P450s) are heme-thiolate proteins distributed across the biological kingdoms. P450s are catalytically versatile and play key roles in organisms primary and secondary metabolism. Identification of P450s across the biological kingdoms depends largely on the identification of two P450 signature motifs, EXXR and CXG, in the protein sequence. Once a putative protein has been identified as P450, it will be assigned to a family and subfamily based on the criteria that P450s within a family share more than 40% homology and members of subfamilies share more than 55% homology. However, to date, no evidence has been presented that can distinguish members of a P450 family. Here, for the first time we report the identification of EXXR- and CXG-motifs-based amino acid patterns that are characteristic of the P450 family. Analysis of P450 signature motifs in the under-explored fungal P450s from four different phyla, ascomycota, basidiomycota, zygomycota and chytridiomycota, indicated that the EXXR motif is highly variable and the CXG motif is somewhat variable. The amino acids threonine and leucine are preferred as second and third amino acids in the EXXR motif and proline and glycine are preferred as second and third amino acids in the CXG motif in fungal P450s. Analysis of 67 P450 families from biological kingdoms such as plants, animals, bacteria and fungi showed conservation of a set of amino acid patterns characteristic of a particular P450 family in EXXR and CXG motifs. This suggests that during the divergence of P450 families from a common ancestor these amino acids patterns evolve and are retained in each P450 family as a signature of that family. The role of amino acid patterns characteristic of a P450 family in the structural and/or functional aspects of members of the P450 family is a topic for future research. PMID:24743800

  4. Making teeth to order: conserved genes reveal an ancient molecular pattern in paddlefish (Actinopterygii)

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Moya M.; Johanson, Zerina; Butts, Thomas; Ericsson, Rolf; Modrell, Melinda; Tulenko, Frank J.; Davis, Marcus C.; Fraser, Gareth J.

    2015-01-01

    Ray-finned fishes (Actinopterygii) are the dominant vertebrate group today (+30 000 species, predominantly teleosts), with great morphological diversity, including their dentitions. How dental morphological variation evolved is best addressed by considering a range of taxa across actinopterygian phylogeny; here we examine the dentition of Polyodon spathula (American paddlefish), assigned to the basal group Acipenseriformes. Although teeth are present and functional in young individuals of Polyodon, they are completely absent in adults. Our current understanding of developmental genes operating in the dentition is primarily restricted to teleosts; we show that shh and bmp4, as highly conserved epithelial and mesenchymal genes for gnathostome tooth development, are similarly expressed at Polyodon tooth loci, thus extending this conserved developmental pattern within the Actinopterygii. These genes map spatio-temporal tooth initiation in Polyodon larvae and provide new data in both oral and pharyngeal tooth sites. Variation in cellular intensity of shh maps timing of tooth morphogenesis, revealing a second odontogenic wave as alternate sites within tooth rows, a dental pattern also present in more derived actinopterygians. Developmental timing for each tooth field in Polyodon follows a gradient, from rostral to caudal and ventral to dorsal, repeated during subsequent loss of teeth. The transitory Polyodon dentition is modified by cessation of tooth addition and loss. As such, Polyodon represents a basal actinopterygian model for the evolution of developmental novelty: initial conservation, followed by tooth loss, accommodating the adult trophic modification to filter-feeding. PMID:25788604

  5. Managing shifting species: Ancient DNA reveals conservation conundrums in a dynamic world.

    PubMed

    Waters, Jonathan M; Grosser, Stefanie

    2016-11-01

    The spread of exotic species represents a major driver of biological change across the planet. While dispersal and colonization are natural biological processes, we suggest that the failure to recognize increasing rates of human-facilitated self-introductions may represent a threat to native lineages. Notably, recent biogeographic analyses have revealed numerous cases of biological range shifts in response to anthropogenic impacts and climate change. In particular, ancient DNA analyses have revealed several cases in which lineages traditionally thought to be long-established "natives" are in fact recent colonizers. Such range expansion events have apparently occurred in response to human-mediated native biodiversity declines and ecosystem change, particularly in recently colonized, isolated ecosystems such as New Zealand. While such events can potentially boost local biodiversity, the spread of exotic lineages may also hasten the decline of indigenous species, so it is essential that conservation managers recognize these rapid biotic shifts.​.

  6. The mouse B cell-specific mb-1 gene encodes an immunoreceptor tyrosine-based activation motif (ITAM) protein that may be evolutionarily conserved in diverse species by purifying selection.

    PubMed

    Sims, Richard; Vandergon, Virginia Oberholzer; Malone, Cindy S

    2012-03-01

    The B-lymphocyte accessory molecule Ig-alpha (Ig-α) is encoded by the mouse B cell-specific gene (mb-1), and along with the Ig-beta (Ig-β) molecule and a membrane bound immunoglobulin (mIg) makes up the B-cell receptor (BCR). Ig-α and Ig-β form a heterodimer structure that upon antigen binding and receptor clustering primarily initiates and controls BCR intracellular signaling via a phosphorylation cascade, ultimately triggering an effector response. The signaling capacity of Ig-α is contained within its immunoreceptor tyrosine-based activation motif (ITAM), which is also a key component for intracellular signaling initiation in other immune cell-specific receptors. Although numerous studies have been devoted to the mb-1 gene product, Ig-α, and its signaling mechanism, an evolutionary analysis of the mb-1 gene has been lacking until now. In this study, mb-1 coding sequences from 19 species were compared using Bayesian inference. Analysis revealed a gene phylogeny consistent with an expected species divergence pattern, clustering species from the primate order separate from lower mammals and other species. In addition, an overall comparison of non-synonymous and synonymous nucleotide mutational changes suggests that the mb-1 gene has undergone purifying selection throughout its evolution.

  7. Structural Conservation of Ligand Binding Reveals a Bile Acid-like Signaling Pathway in Nematodes*

    PubMed Central

    Zhi, Xiaoyong; Zhou, X. Edward; Melcher, Karsten; Motola, Daniel L.; Gelmedin, Verena; Hawdon, John; Kliewer, Steven A.; Mangelsdorf, David J.; Xu, H. Eric

    2012-01-01

    Bile acid-like molecules named dafachronic acids (DAs) control the dauer formation program in Caenorhabditis elegans through the nuclear receptor DAF-12. This mechanism is conserved in parasitic nematodes to regulate their dauer-like infective larval stage, and as such, the DAF-12 ligand binding domain has been identified as an important therapeutic target in human parasitic hookworm species that infect more than 600 million people worldwide. Here, we report two x-ray crystal structures of the hookworm Ancylostoma ceylanicum DAF-12 ligand binding domain in complex with DA and cholestenoic acid (a bile acid-like metabolite), respectively. Structure analysis and functional studies reveal key residues responsible for species-specific ligand responses of DAF-12. Furthermore, DA binds to DAF-12 mechanistically and is structurally similar to bile acids binding to the mammalian bile acid receptor farnesoid X receptor. Activation of DAF-12 by cholestenoic acid and the cholestenoic acid complex structure suggest that bile acid-like signaling pathways have been conserved in nematodes and mammals. Together, these results reveal the molecular mechanism for the interplay between parasite and host, provide a structural framework for DAF-12 as a promising target in treating nematode parasitism, and provide insight into the evolution of gut parasite hormone-signaling pathways. PMID:22170062

  8. Molecular analysis of Drosophila eyes absent mutants reveals features of the conserved Eya domain.

    PubMed Central

    Bui, Q T; Zimmerman, J E; Liu, H; Bonini, N M

    2000-01-01

    The eyes absent (eya) gene is critical to eye formation in Drosophila; upon loss of eya function, eye progenitor cells die by programmed cell death. Moreover, ectopic eya expression directs eye formation, and eya functionally synergizes in vivo and physically interacts in vitro with two other genes of eye development, sine oculis and dachshund. The Eya protein sequence, while highly conserved to vertebrates, is novel. To define amino acids critical to the function of the Eya protein, we have sequenced eya alleles. These mutations have revealed that loss of the entire Eya Domain is null for eya activity, but that alleles with truncations within the Eya Domain display partial function. We then extended the molecular genetic analysis to interactions within the Eya Domain. This analysis has revealed regions of special importance to interaction with Sine Oculis or Dachshund. Select eya missense mutations within the Eya Domain diminished the interactions with Sine Oculis or Dachshund. Taken together, these data suggest that the conserved Eya Domain is critical for eya activity and may have functional subregions within it. PMID:10835393

  9. Comparison of a Modern and Fossil Pithovirus Reveals Its Genetic Conservation and Evolution.

    PubMed

    Levasseur, Anthony; Andreani, Julien; Delerce, Jeremy; Bou Khalil, Jacques; Robert, Catherine; La Scola, Bernard; Raoult, Didier

    2016-08-25

    Most theories on viral evolution are speculative and lack fossil comparison. Here, we isolated a modern Pithovirus-like virus from sewage samples. This giant virus, named Pithovirus massiliensis, was compared with its prehistoric counterpart, Pithovirus sibericum, found in Siberian permafrost. Our analysis revealed near-complete gene repertoire conservation, including horizontal gene transfer and ORFans. Furthermore, all orthologous genes evolved under strong purifying selection with a non-synonymous and synonymous ratio in the same range as the ratio found in the prokaryotic world. The comparison between fossil and modern Pithovirus species provided an estimation of the cadence of the molecular clock, reaching up to 3 × 10(-6) mutations/site/year. In addition, the strict conservation of HGTs and ORFans in P. massiliensis revealed the stable genetic mosaicism in giant viruses and excludes the concept of a bag of genes. The genetic stability for 30,000 years of P. massiliensis demonstrates that giant viruses evolve similarly to prokaryotes by classical mechanisms of evolution, including selection and fixation of genes, followed by selective constraints.

  10. Comparison of a Modern and Fossil Pithovirus Reveals Its Genetic Conservation and Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Levasseur, Anthony; Andreani, Julien; Delerce, Jeremy; Bou Khalil, Jacques; Robert, Catherine; La Scola, Bernard; Raoult, Didier

    2016-01-01

    Most theories on viral evolution are speculative and lack fossil comparison. Here, we isolated a modern Pithovirus-like virus from sewage samples. This giant virus, named Pithovirus massiliensis, was compared with its prehistoric counterpart, Pithovirus sibericum, found in Siberian permafrost. Our analysis revealed near-complete gene repertoire conservation, including horizontal gene transfer and ORFans. Furthermore, all orthologous genes evolved under strong purifying selection with a non-synonymous and synonymous ratio in the same range as the ratio found in the prokaryotic world. The comparison between fossil and modern Pithovirus species provided an estimation of the cadence of the molecular clock, reaching up to 3 × 10−6 mutations/site/year. In addition, the strict conservation of HGTs and ORFans in P. massiliensis revealed the stable genetic mosaicism in giant viruses and excludes the concept of a bag of genes. The genetic stability for 30,000 years of P. massiliensis demonstrates that giant viruses evolve similarly to prokaryotes by classical mechanisms of evolution, including selection and fixation of genes, followed by selective constraints. PMID:27389688

  11. Conservation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National Audubon Society, New York, NY.

    This set of teaching aids consists of seven Audubon Nature Bulletins, providing the teacher and student with informational reading on various topics in conservation. The bulletins have these titles: Plants as Makers of Soil, Water Pollution Control, The Ground Water Table, Conservation--To Keep This Earth Habitable, Our Threatened Air Supply,…

  12. IFN-γ and its receptors in a reptile reveal the evolutionary conservation of type II IFNs in vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Chen, Shan Nan; Huang, Bei; Zhang, Xiao Wen; Li, Ye; Zhao, Li Juan; Li, Nan; Gao, Qian; Nie, P

    2013-12-01

    In this study, interferon gamma (IFN-γ) and interferon gamma receptor (IFN-γR) genes have been identified in non-avian reptile, the North American green anole lizard (Anolis carolinensis). Like their counterparts from other jawed vertebrates, lizard IFN-γ, IFN-γR1 and IFN-γR2 show conserved features in genomic organizations, gene loci and protein sequences. The IFN-γ gene has the full cDNA sequence of 936 bp, with 522 bp open reading frame (ORF) encoding 174 amino acids, and has the genomic organization of four exons and three introns as observed in IFN-γ genes of other classes of vertebrates. The receptors, IFN-γR1 and IFN-γR2 have the ORF of 1278 and 984 bp, coding for 425 and 327 aa, respectively, with the genome organization of seven exons and six introns. In the gene loci of IFN-γ, DYRK2, IL22, IL26 and MDM1 are found with conserved synteny in vertebrates, and similar genes adjacent to IFN-γR1 and IFN-γR2 were also found. These receptors also contain conserved motifs, such as the membrane-proximal region and the C-terminal five residue motif in IFN-γR1, and intracellular conservative sequence in IFN-γR2, which have been confirmed to mediate down-stream JAK-STAT signaling pathway in mammals. IFN-γ and its receptors, IFN-γR1 and IFN-γR2 were constitutively expressed in organs/tissues examined in the lizard, and up-regulated expression of IFN-γ was observed in organs/tissues examined following the poly(I:C) stimulation, suggesting its antiviral role in lizards. The conserved features of IFN-γ and its receptors, IFN-γR1 and IFN-γR2, in gene organization and gene locus as well as in functional domain or motif may imply that the function of type II IFN system is evolutionarily conserved in the green anole lizard, as observed in other classes of vertebrates.

  13. An evolutionary analysis of flightin reveals a conserved motif unique and widespread in Pancrustacea.

    PubMed

    Soto-Adames, Felipe N; Alvarez-Ortiz, Pedro; Vigoreaux, Jim O

    2014-01-01

    Flightin is a thick filament protein that in Drosophila melanogaster is uniquely expressed in the asynchronous, indirect flight muscles (IFM). Flightin is required for the structure and function of the IFM and is indispensable for flight in Drosophila. Given the importance of flight acquisition in the evolutionary history of insects, here we study the phylogeny and distribution of flightin. Flightin was identified in 69 species of hexapods in classes Collembola (springtails), Protura, Diplura, and insect orders Thysanura (silverfish), Dictyoptera (roaches), Orthoptera (grasshoppers), Pthiraptera (lice), Hemiptera (true bugs), Coleoptera (beetles), Neuroptera (green lacewing), Hymenoptera (bees, ants, and wasps), Lepidoptera (moths), and Diptera (flies and mosquitoes). Flightin was also found in 14 species of crustaceans in orders Anostraca (water flea), Cladocera (brine shrimp), Isopoda (pill bugs), Amphipoda (scuds, sideswimmers), and Decapoda (lobsters, crabs, and shrimps). Flightin was not identified in representatives of chelicerates, myriapods, or any species outside Pancrustacea (Tetraconata, sensu Dohle). Alignment of amino acid sequences revealed a conserved region of 52 amino acids, referred herein as WYR, that is bound by strictly conserved tryptophan (W) and arginine (R) and an intervening sequence with a high content of tyrosines (Y). This motif has no homologs in GenBank or PROSITE and is unique to flightin and paraflightin, a putative flightin paralog identified in decapods. A third motif of unclear affinities to pancrustacean WYR was observed in chelicerates. Phylogenetic analysis of amino acid sequences of the conserved motif suggests that paraflightin originated before the divergence of amphipods, isopods, and decapods. We conclude that flightin originated de novo in the ancestor of Pancrustacea > 500 MYA, well before the divergence of insects (~400 MYA) and the origin of flight (~325 MYA), and that its IFM-specific function in Drosophila is a more

  14. Genetic diversity and population structure of endangered Aquilaria malaccensis revealed potential for future conservation.

    PubMed

    Singh, Pradeep; Nag, Akshay; Parmar, Rajni; Ghosh, Sneha; Bhau, Brijmohan Singh; Sharma, Ram Kumar

    2015-12-01

    The endangered Aquilaria malaccensis,is an important plant with high economic values. Characterization of genetic diversity and population structure is receiving tremendous attention for effective conservation of genetic resources. Considering important repositories of biological diversity, the genetic relationships of 127 A. malaccensis accessions from 10 home gardens of three states of northeast India were assessed using amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP). Of the 1153 fragments amplified with four AFLP primer combinations, 916 (79.4%) were found to be polymorphic. Polymorphic information content (PIC) and marker index (MI) of each primer combination correlate significantly with the number of genotypes resolved. Overall, a high genetic diversity (avg. 71.85%) was recorded. Further, high gene flow (Nm: 3.37), low genetic differentiation (FST: 0.069) and high within population genetic variation (93%) suggests that most of the genetic diversity is restricted within population. Neighbour joining (NJ), principal coordinate analysis (PCoA) and Bayesian-based STRUCTURE grouped all the accessions in two clusters with significant intermixing between populations, therefore, revealed that two genetically distinct gene pools are operating in the A. malaccensis populations cultivated in home gardens. Based on the various diversity inferences, five diverse populations (JOH, FN, HLF, DHM and ITN) were identified, which can be potentially exploited to develop conservation strategies for A. malaccensis.

  15. Global analysis of asymmetric RNA enrichment in oocytes reveals low conservation between closely related Xenopus species

    PubMed Central

    Claußen, Maike; Lingner, Thomas; Pommerenke, Claudia; Opitz, Lennart; Salinas, Gabriela; Pieler, Tomas

    2015-01-01

    RNAs that localize to the vegetal cortex during Xenopus laevis oogenesis have been reported to function in germ layer patterning, axis determination, and development of the primordial germ cells. Here we report on the genome-wide, comparative analysis of differentially localizing RNAs in Xenopus laevis and Xenopus tropicalis oocytes, revealing a surprisingly weak degree of conservation in respect to the identity of animally as well as vegetally enriched transcripts in these closely related species. Heterologous RNA injections and protein binding studies indicate that the different RNA localization patterns in these two species are due to gain/loss of cis-acting localization signals rather than to differences in the RNA-localizing machinery. PMID:26337391

  16. Molecular Characterization of the 14-3-3 Gene Family in Brachypodium distachyon L. Reveals High Evolutionary Conservation and Diverse Responses to Abiotic Stresses

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Hui; Xu, Yuxing; Yuan, Linlin; Bian, Yanwei; Wang, Lihui; Zhen, Shoumin; Hu, Yingkao; Yan, Yueming

    2016-01-01

    The 14-3-3 gene family identified in all eukaryotic organisms is involved in a wide range of biological processes, particularly in resistance to various abiotic stresses. Here, we performed the first comprehensive study on the molecular characterization, phylogenetics, and responses to various abiotic stresses of the 14-3-3 gene family in Brachypodium distachyon L. A total of seven 14-3-3 genes from B. distachyon and 120 from five main lineages among 12 species were identified, which were divided into five well-conserved subfamilies. The molecular structure analysis showed that the plant 14-3-3 gene family is highly evolutionarily conserved, although certain divergence had occurred in different subfamilies. The duplication event investigation revealed that segmental duplication seemed to be the predominant form by which the 14-3-3 gene family had expanded. Moreover, seven critical amino acids were detected, which may contribute to functional divergence. Expression profiling analysis showed that BdGF14 genes were abundantly expressed in the roots, but showed low expression in the meristems. All seven BdGF14 genes showed significant expression changes under various abiotic stresses, including heavy metal, phytohormone, osmotic, and temperature stresses, which might play important roles in responses to multiple abiotic stresses mainly through participating in ABA-dependent signaling and reactive oxygen species-mediated MAPK cascade signaling pathways. In particular, BdGF14 genes generally showed upregulated expression in response to multiple stresses of high temperature, heavy metal, abscisic acid (ABA), and salicylic acid (SA), but downregulated expression under H2O2, NaCl, and polyethylene glycol (PEG) stresses. Meanwhile, dynamic transcriptional expression analysis of BdGF14 genes under longer treatments with heavy metals (Cd2+, Cr3+, Cu2+, and Zn2+) and phytohormone (ABA) and recovery revealed two main expression trends in both roots and leaves: up-down and up

  17. Mutation in a primate-conserved retrotransposon reveals a noncoding RNA as a mediator of infantile encephalopathy

    PubMed Central

    Cartault, François; Munier, Patrick; Benko, Edgar; Desguerre, Isabelle; Hanein, Sylvain; Boddaert, Nathalie; Bandiera, Simonetta; Vellayoudom, Jeanine; Krejbich-Trotot, Pascale; Bintner, Marc; Hoarau, Jean-Jacques; Girard, Muriel; Génin, Emmanuelle; de Lonlay, Pascale; Fourmaintraux, Alain; Naville, Magali; Rodriguez, Diana; Feingold, Josué; Renouil, Michel; Munnich, Arnold; Westhof, Eric; Fähling, Michael; Lyonnet, Stanislas; Henrion-Caude, Alexandra

    2012-01-01

    The human genome is densely populated with transposons and transposon-like repetitive elements. Although the impact of these transposons and elements on human genome evolution is recognized, the significance of subtle variations in their sequence remains mostly unexplored. Here we report homozygosity mapping of an infantile neurodegenerative disease locus in a genetic isolate. Complete DNA sequencing of the 400-kb linkage locus revealed a point mutation in a primate-specific retrotransposon that was transcribed as part of a unique noncoding RNA, which was expressed in the brain. In vitro knockdown of this RNA increased neuronal apoptosis, consistent with the inappropriate dosage of this RNA in vivo and with the phenotype. Moreover, structural analysis of the sequence revealed a small RNA-like hairpin that was consistent with the putative gain of a functional site when mutated. We show here that a mutation in a unique transposable element-containing RNA is associated with lethal encephalopathy, and we suggest that RNAs that harbor evolutionarily recent repetitive elements may play important roles in human brain development. PMID:22411793

  18. Population Genomic Analysis Reveals Highly Conserved Mitochondrial Genomes in the Yeast Species Lachancea thermotolerans

    PubMed Central

    Freel, Kelle C.; Friedrich, Anne; Hou, Jing; Schacherer, Joseph

    2014-01-01

    The increasing availability of mitochondrial (mt) sequence data from various yeasts provides a tool to study genomic evolution within and between different species. While the genomes from a range of lineages are available, there is a lack of information concerning intraspecific mtDNA diversity. Here, we analyzed the mt genomes of 50 strains from Lachancea thermotolerans, a protoploid yeast species that has been isolated from several locations (Europe, Asia, Australia, South Africa, and North / South America) and ecological sources (fruit, tree exudate, plant material, and grape and agave fermentations). Protein-coding genes from the mtDNA were used to construct a phylogeny, which reflected a similar, yet less resolved topology than the phylogenetic tree of 50 nuclear genes. In comparison to its sister species Lachancea kluyveri, L. thermotolerans has a smaller mt genome. This is due to shorter intergenic regions and fewer introns, of which the latter are only found in COX1. We revealed that L. kluyveri and L. thermotolerans share similar levels of intraspecific divergence concerning the nuclear genomes. However, L. thermotolerans has a more highly conserved mt genome with the coding regions characterized by low rates of nonsynonymous substitution. Thus, in the mt genomes of L. thermotolerans, stronger purifying selection and lower mutation rates potentially shape genome diversity in contract to what was found for L. kluyveri, demonstrating that the factors driving mt genome evolution are different even between closely related species. PMID:25212859

  19. Conserved chromosome segments in Hylobates hoolock revealed by human and H. leucogenys paint probes.

    PubMed

    Nie, W; Rens, W; Wang, J; Yang, F

    2001-01-01

    A complete comparative chromosome map of the white-browed gibbon (Hylobates hoolock, 2n = 38), white-cheeked gibbon (Hylobates leucogenys, 2n = 52), and human has been established by hybridising H. leucogenys chromosome-specific paints and human 24-colour paints onto H. hoolock metaphase chromosomes. In the 18 H. hoolock autosomes, we identified 62 conserved segments that showed DNA homology to regions of the 25 H. leucogenys autosomes. Numerous interchromosomal rearrangements differentiate the karyotypes of H. leucogenys and H. hoolock. Only H. hoolock chromosome 10 showed homology to one entire autosome of H. leucogenys. The hybridisation of human 24-colour paints not only confirmed most of the chromosome correspondences between human and H. hoolock established previously but also helped to correct five erroneous assignments and revealed three new segments. Our results demonstrate that the karyotypes of the extant gibbons have arisen mainly through extensive translocation events and that the karyotype of H. hoolock more closely resembles the ancestral karyotype of Hylobates, rather than the karyotype of H. leucogenys.

  20. Whole Hillslope Irrigation Reveals Differential Interflow Behavior of Dye Tracers, Conservative Solutes and Nutrients

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jackson, C. R.; Du, E.; Klaus, J.; Griffiths, N. A.; McDonnell, J. J.; Blake, J. I.

    2012-12-01

    Previous investigations of perching and interflow behavior in low angle hillslopes in the SC Coastal Plain have suggested a high threshold for interflow occurrence. Here we report a new irrigation experiment designed to quantify interflow thresholds and reveal subsurface mixing processes during steady state flow conditions over a 12m x 16.5m plot draining to an interflow interception trench. Dye tracers were applied on surface transects prior to irrigation, and bromide (conservative tracer), nitrate, ammonium, and phosphorus (reactive tracers) were added at constant concentrations to the irrigation water drawn from a deep aquifer with a distinct isotopic signature. 417mm of water were applied over 51 hours, and drainage conditions were monitored for a week following irrigation. Interflow in the two drains commenced after 131 and 178mm, and flow rates diminished immediately after irrigation ceased, although interflow continued for four more days. Over the experiment, 199mm of water (49% of applied water) appeared as interflow. Dye tracers moved rapidly with the wetting front, with peak concentrations measured shortly after flow commencement, suggesting saturated topsoil conductivities of 0.5 to 1.5 m/hr. No preferential flow was observed during this experiment or previously during rainfall events at the trench face. Bromide concentrations and the new water fraction rose steadily throughout irrigation, peaking about 16 hours after irrigation ceased. Ammonium and phosphorus concentrations at the trench face were low, suggesting rapid uptake or sorption, while nitrate concentrations were higher, suggesting more conservative transport. Our two collection drains showed identical temporal variation in bromide concentrations but consistently different new/old water fractions, indicating differences in flow paths and storages within the plot. These data suggest that tightly bound soil water exchanged with new water throughout the experiment, and that a significant portion

  1. Deep small RNA sequencing from the nematode Ascaris reveals conservation, functional diversification, and novel developmental profiles.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jianbin; Czech, Benjamin; Crunk, Amanda; Wallace, Adam; Mitreva, Makedonka; Hannon, Gregory J; Davis, Richard E

    2011-09-01

    Eukaryotic cells express several classes of small RNAs that regulate gene expression and ensure genome maintenance. Endogenous siRNAs (endo-siRNAs) and Piwi-interacting RNAs (piRNAs) mainly control gene and transposon expression in the germline, while microRNAs (miRNAs) generally function in post-transcriptional gene silencing in both somatic and germline cells. To provide an evolutionary and developmental perspective on small RNA pathways in nematodes, we identified and characterized known and novel small RNA classes through gametogenesis and embryo development in the parasitic nematode Ascaris suum and compared them with known small RNAs of Caenorhabditis elegans. piRNAs, Piwi-clade Argonautes, and other proteins associated with the piRNA pathway have been lost in Ascaris. miRNAs are synthesized immediately after fertilization in utero, before pronuclear fusion, and before the first cleavage of the zygote. This is the earliest expression of small RNAs ever described at a developmental stage long thought to be transcriptionally quiescent. A comparison of the two classes of Ascaris endo-siRNAs, 22G-RNAs and 26G-RNAs, to those in C. elegans, suggests great diversification and plasticity in the use of small RNA pathways during spermatogenesis in different nematodes. Our data reveal conserved characteristics of nematode small RNAs as well as features unique to Ascaris that illustrate significant flexibility in the use of small RNAs pathways, some of which are likely an adaptation to Ascaris' life cycle and parasitism. The transcriptome assembly has been submitted to NCBI Transcriptome Shotgun Assembly Sequence Database(http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/genbank/TSA.html) under accession numbers JI163767–JI182837 and JI210738–JI257410.

  2. A Consensus Map in Cultivated Hexaploid Oat Reveals Conserved Grass Synteny with Substantial Subgenome Rearrangement.

    PubMed

    Chaffin, Ashley S; Huang, Yung-Fen; Smith, Scott; Bekele, Wubishet A; Babiker, Ebrahiem; Gnanesh, Belaghihalli N; Foresman, Bradley J; Blanchard, Steven G; Jay, Jeremy J; Reid, Robert W; Wight, Charlene P; Chao, Shiaoman; Oliver, Rebekah; Islamovic, Emir; Kolb, Frederic L; McCartney, Curt; Mitchell Fetch, Jennifer W; Beattie, Aaron D; Bjørnstad, Åsmund; Bonman, J Michael; Langdon, Tim; Howarth, Catherine J; Brouwer, Cory R; Jellen, Eric N; Klos, Kathy Esvelt; Poland, Jesse A; Hsieh, Tzung-Fu; Brown, Ryan; Jackson, Eric; Schlueter, Jessica A; Tinker, Nicholas A

    2016-07-01

    Hexaploid oat ( L., 2 = 6 = 42) is a member of the Poaceae family and has a large genome (∼12.5 Gb) containing 21 chromosome pairs from three ancestral genomes. Physical rearrangements among parental genomes have hindered the development of linkage maps in this species. The objective of this work was to develop a single high-density consensus linkage map that is representative of the majority of commonly grown oat varieties. Data from a cDNA-derived single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) array and genotyping-by-sequencing (GBS) were collected from the progeny of 12 biparental recombinant inbred line populations derived from 19 parents representing oat germplasm cultivated primarily in North America. Linkage groups from all mapping populations were compared to identify 21 clusters of conserved collinearity. Linkage groups within each cluster were then merged into 21 consensus chromosomes, generating a framework consensus map of 7202 markers spanning 2843 cM. An additional 9678 markers were placed on this map with a lower degree of certainty. Assignment to physical chromosomes with high confidence was made for nine chromosomes. Comparison of homeologous regions among oat chromosomes and matches to orthologous regions of rice ( L.) reveal that the hexaploid oat genome has been highly rearranged relative to its ancestral diploid genomes as a result of frequent translocations among chromosomes. Heterogeneous chromosome rearrangements among populations were also evident, probably accounting for the failure of some linkage groups to match the consensus. This work contributes to a further understanding of the organization and evolution of hexaploid grass genomes.

  3. A belief-based evolutionarily stable strategy.

    PubMed

    Deng, Xinyang; Wang, Zhen; Liu, Qi; Deng, Yong; Mahadevan, Sankaran

    2014-11-21

    As an equilibrium refinement of the Nash equilibrium, evolutionarily stable strategy (ESS) is a key concept in evolutionary game theory and has attracted growing interest. An ESS can be either a pure strategy or a mixed strategy. Even though the randomness is allowed in mixed strategy, the selection probability of pure strategy in a mixed strategy may fluctuate due to the impact of many factors. The fluctuation can lead to more uncertainty. In this paper, such uncertainty involved in mixed strategy has been further taken into consideration: a belief strategy is proposed in terms of Dempster-Shafer evidence theory. Furthermore, based on the proposed belief strategy, a belief-based ESS has been developed. The belief strategy and belief-based ESS can reduce to the mixed strategy and mixed ESS, which provide more realistic and powerful tools to describe interactions among agents.

  4. Evolutionarily stable sex ratios and mutation load.

    PubMed

    Hough, Josh; Immler, Simone; Barrett, Spencer C H; Otto, Sarah P

    2013-07-01

    Frequency-dependent selection should drive dioecious populations toward a 1:1 sex ratio, but biased sex ratios are widespread, especially among plants with sex chromosomes. Here, we develop population genetic models to investigate the relationships between evolutionarily stable sex ratios, haploid selection, and deleterious mutation load. We confirm that when haploid selection acts only on the relative fitness of X- and Y-bearing pollen and the sex ratio is controlled by the maternal genotype, seed sex ratios evolve toward 1:1. When we also consider haploid selection acting on deleterious mutations, however, we find that biased sex ratios can be stably maintained, reflecting a balance between the advantages of purging deleterious mutations via haploid selection, and the disadvantages of haploid selection on the sex ratio. Our results provide a plausible evolutionary explanation for biased sex ratios in dioecious plants, given the extensive gene expression that occurs across plant genomes at the haploid stage.

  5. G-quadruplex prediction in E. coli genome reveals a conserved putative G-quadruplex-Hairpin-Duplex switch

    PubMed Central

    Kaplan, Oktay I.; Berber, Burak; Hekim, Nezih; Doluca, Osman

    2016-01-01

    Many studies show that short non-coding sequences are widely conserved among regulatory elements. More and more conserved sequences are being discovered since the development of next generation sequencing technology. A common approach to identify conserved sequences with regulatory roles relies on topological changes such as hairpin formation at the DNA or RNA level. G-quadruplexes, non-canonical nucleic acid topologies with little established biological roles, are increasingly considered for conserved regulatory element discovery. Since the tertiary structure of G-quadruplexes is strongly dependent on the loop sequence which is disregarded by the generally accepted algorithm, we hypothesized that G-quadruplexes with similar topology and, indirectly, similar interaction patterns, can be determined using phylogenetic clustering based on differences in the loop sequences. Phylogenetic analysis of 52 G-quadruplex forming sequences in the Escherichia coli genome revealed two conserved G-quadruplex motifs with a potential regulatory role. Further analysis revealed that both motifs tend to form hairpins and G quadruplexes, as supported by circular dichroism studies. The phylogenetic analysis as described in this work can greatly improve the discovery of functional G-quadruplex structures and may explain unknown regulatory patterns. PMID:27596596

  6. Global geno-proteomic analysis reveals cross-continental sequence conservation and druggable sites among influenza virus polymerases.

    PubMed

    Babar, Mustafeez Mujtaba; Zaidi, Najam-us-Sahar Sadaf; Tahir, Muhammad

    2014-12-01

    Influenza virus is one of the major causes of mortality and morbidity associated with respiratory diseases. The high rate of mutation in the viral proteome provides it with the ability to survive in a variety of host species. This property helps it in maintaining and developing its pathogenicity, transmission and drug resistance. Alternate drug targets, particularly the internal proteins, can potentially be exploited for addressing the resistance issues. In the current analysis, the degree of conservation of influenza virus polymerases has been studied as one of the essential elements for establishing its candidature as a potential target of antiviral therapy. We analyzed more than 130,000 nucleotide and amino acid sequences by classifying them on the basis of continental presence of host organisms. Computational analyses including genetic polymorphism study, mutation pattern determination, molecular evolution and geophylogenetic analysis were performed to establish the high degree of conservation among the sequences. These studies lead to establishing the polymerases, in particular PB1, as highly conserved proteins. Moreover, we mapped the conservation percentage on the tertiary structures of proteins to identify the conserved, druggable sites. The research study, hence, revealed that the influenza virus polymerases are highly conserved (95-99%) proteins with a very slow mutation rate. Potential drug binding sites on various polymerases have also been reported. A scheme for drug target candidate development that can be employed to rapidly mutating proteins has been presented. Moreover, the research output can help in designing new therapeutic molecules against the identified targets.

  7. Extensive conservation of sex chromosome organization between cat and human revealed by parallel radiation hybrid mapping.

    PubMed

    Murphy, W J; Sun, S; Chen, Z Q; Pecon-Slattery, J; O'Brien, S J

    1999-12-01

    A radiation hybrid (RH)-derived physical map of 25 markers on the feline X chromosome (including 19 Type I coding loci and 6 Type II microsatellite markers) was compared to homologous marker order on the human and mouse X chromosome maps. Complete conservation of synteny and marker order was observed between feline and human X chromosomes, whereas the same markers identified a minimum of seven rearranged syntenic segments between mouse and cat/human X chromosome marker order. Within the blocks, the feline, human, and mouse marker order was strongly conserved. Similarly, Y chromosome locus order was remarkably conserved between cat and human Y chromosomes, with only one marker (SMCY) position rearranged between the species. Tight linkage and a conserved gene order for a segment encoding three genes, DFFRY-DBY-UTY in human, mouse, and cat Y chromosomes, coupled with demonstrated deletion effects of these genes on reproductive impairment in both human and mouse, implicates the region as critical for Y-mediated sperm production.

  8. The Evolutionarily Stable Distribution of Fitness Effects

    PubMed Central

    Rice, Daniel P.; Good, Benjamin H.; Desai, Michael M.

    2015-01-01

    The distribution of fitness effects (DFE) of new mutations is a key parameter in determining the course of evolution. This fact has motivated extensive efforts to measure the DFE or to predict it from first principles. However, just as the DFE determines the course of evolution, the evolutionary process itself constrains the DFE. Here, we analyze a simple model of genome evolution in a constant environment in which natural selection drives the population toward a dynamic steady state where beneficial and deleterious substitutions balance. The distribution of fitness effects at this steady state is stable under further evolution and provides a natural null expectation for the DFE in a population that has evolved in a constant environment for a long time. We calculate how the shape of the evolutionarily stable DFE depends on the underlying population genetic parameters. We show that, in the absence of epistasis, the ratio of beneficial to deleterious mutations of a given fitness effect obeys a simple relationship independent of population genetic details. Finally, we analyze how the stable DFE changes in the presence of a simple form of diminishing-returns epistasis. PMID:25762525

  9. The evolutionarily stable distribution of fitness effects.

    PubMed

    Rice, Daniel P; Good, Benjamin H; Desai, Michael M

    2015-05-01

    The distribution of fitness effects (DFE) of new mutations is a key parameter in determining the course of evolution. This fact has motivated extensive efforts to measure the DFE or to predict it from first principles. However, just as the DFE determines the course of evolution, the evolutionary process itself constrains the DFE. Here, we analyze a simple model of genome evolution in a constant environment in which natural selection drives the population toward a dynamic steady state where beneficial and deleterious substitutions balance. The distribution of fitness effects at this steady state is stable under further evolution and provides a natural null expectation for the DFE in a population that has evolved in a constant environment for a long time. We calculate how the shape of the evolutionarily stable DFE depends on the underlying population genetic parameters. We show that, in the absence of epistasis, the ratio of beneficial to deleterious mutations of a given fitness effect obeys a simple relationship independent of population genetic details. Finally, we analyze how the stable DFE changes in the presence of a simple form of diminishing-returns epistasis.

  10. Genetic diversity and conservation implications of four Cupressus species in China as revealed by microsatellite markers.

    PubMed

    Lu, Xu; Xu, Haiyan; Li, Zhonghu; Shang, Huiying; Adams, Robert P; Mao, Kangshan

    2014-04-01

    Understanding the extent and distribution of genetic diversity is crucial for the conservation and management of endangered species. Cupressus chengiana, C. duclouxiana, C. gigantea, and C. funebris are four ecologically and economically important species in China. We investigated their genetic diversity, population structure, and extant effective population size (35 populations, 484 individuals) employing six pairs of nuclear microsatellite markers (selected from 53). Their genetic diversity is moderate among conifers, and genetic differentiation among populations is much lower in C. gigantea than in the other three species; the estimated effective population size was largest for C. chengiana, at 1.70, 2.91, and 3.91 times the estimates for C. duclouxiana, C. funebris, and C. gigantea, respectively. According to Bayesian clustering analysis, the most plausible population subdivision scheme within species is two groups in C. chengiana, three groups in C. duclouxiana, and a single group for both C. funebris and C. gigantea. We propose a conservation strategy for these cypress species.

  11. The structure of a conserved piezo channel domain reveals a topologically distinct β sandwich fold.

    PubMed

    Kamajaya, Aron; Kaiser, Jens T; Lee, Jonas; Reid, Michelle; Rees, Douglas C

    2014-10-07

    Piezo has recently been identified as a family of eukaryotic mechanosensitive channels composed of subunits containing over 2,000 amino acids, without recognizable sequence similarity to other channels. Here, we present the crystal structure of a large, conserved extramembrane domain located just before the last predicted transmembrane helix of C. elegans PIEZO, which adopts a topologically distinct β sandwich fold. The structure was also determined of a point mutation located on a conserved surface at the position equivalent to the human PIEZO1 mutation found in dehydrated hereditary stomatocytosis patients (M2225R). While the point mutation does not change the overall domain structure, it does alter the surface electrostatic potential that may perturb interactions with a yet-to-be-identified ligand or protein. The lack of structural similarity between this domain and any previously characterized fold, including those of eukaryotic and bacterial channels, highlights the distinctive nature of the Piezo family of eukaryotic mechanosensitive channels.

  12. Evolutionary genomics reveals conserved structural determinants of signaling and adaptation in microbial chemoreceptors

    SciTech Connect

    Alexander, Roger P; Jouline, Igor B

    2007-01-01

    As an important model for transmembrane signaling, methyl-accepting chemotaxis proteins (MCPs) have been extensively studied by using genetic, biochemical, and structural techniques. However, details of the molecular mechanism of signaling are still not well understood. The availability of genomic information for hundreds of species enables the identification of features in protein sequences that are conserved over long evolutionary distances and thus are critically important for function. We carried out a large-scale comparative genomic analysis of the MCP signaling and adaptation domain family and identified features that appear to be critical for receptor structure and function. Based on domain length and sequence conservation, we identified seven major MCP classes and three distinct structural regions within the cytoplasmic domain: signaling, methylation, and flexible bundle subdomains. The flexible bundle subdomain, not previously recognized in MCPs, is a conserved element that appears to be important for signal transduction. Remarkably, the N- and C-terminal helical arms of the cytoplasmic domain maintain symmetry in length and register despite dramatic variation, from 24 to 64 7-aa heptads in overall domain length. Loss of symmetry is observed in some MCPs, where it is concomitant with specific changes in the sensory module. Each major MCP class has a distinct pattern of predicted methylation sites that is well supported by experimental data. Our findings indicate that signaling and adaptation functions within the MCP cytoplasmic domain are tightly coupled, and that their coevolution has contributed to the significant diversity in chemotaxis mechanisms among different organisms.

  13. DNA barcoding applied to ex situ tropical amphibian conservation programme reveals cryptic diversity in captive populations.

    PubMed

    Crawford, Andrew J; Cruz, Catalina; Griffith, Edgardo; Ross, Heidi; Ibáñez, Roberto; Lips, Karen R; Driskell, Amy C; Bermingham, Eldredge; Crump, Paul

    2013-11-01

    Amphibians constitute a diverse yet still incompletely characterized clade of vertebrates, in which new species are still being discovered and described at a high rate. Amphibians are also increasingly endangered, due in part to disease-driven threats of extinctions. As an emergency response, conservationists have begun ex situ assurance colonies for priority species. The abundance of cryptic amphibian diversity, however, may cause problems for ex situ conservation. In this study we used a DNA barcoding approach to survey mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) variation in captive populations of 10 species of Neotropical amphibians maintained in an ex situ assurance programme at El Valle Amphibian Conservation Center (EVACC) in the Republic of Panama. We combined these mtDNA sequences with genetic data from presumably conspecific wild populations sampled from across Panama, and applied genetic distance-based and character-based analyses to identify cryptic lineages. We found that three of ten species harboured substantial cryptic genetic diversity within EVACC, and an additional three species harboured cryptic diversity among wild populations, but not in captivity. Ex situ conservation efforts focused on amphibians are therefore vulnerable to an incomplete taxonomy leading to misidentification among cryptic species. DNA barcoding may therefore provide a simple, standardized protocol to identify cryptic diversity readily applicable to any amphibian community.

  14. Phylogenetic analysis reveals conservation and diversification of micro RNA166 genes among diverse plant species.

    PubMed

    Barik, Suvakanta; SarkarDas, Shabari; Singh, Archita; Gautam, Vibhav; Kumar, Pramod; Majee, Manoj; Sarkar, Ananda K

    2014-01-01

    Similar to the majority of the microRNAs, mature miR166s are derived from multiple members of MIR166 genes (precursors) and regulate various aspects of plant development by negatively regulating their target genes (Class III HD-ZIP). The evolutionary conservation or functional diversification of miRNA166 family members remains elusive. Here, we show the phylogenetic relationships among MIR166 precursor and mature sequences from three diverse model plant species. Despite strong conservation, some mature miR166 sequences, such as ppt-miR166m, have undergone sequence variation. Critical sequence variation in ppt-miR166m has led to functional diversification, as it targets non-HD-ZIPIII gene transcript (s). MIR166 precursor sequences have diverged in a lineage specific manner, and both precursors and mature osa-miR166i/j are highly conserved. Interestingly, polycistronic MIR166s were present in Physcomitrella and Oryza but not in Arabidopsis. The nature of cis-regulatory motifs on the upstream promoter sequences of MIR166 genes indicates their possible contribution to the functional variation observed among miR166 species.

  15. A reporter assay in lamprey embryos reveals both functional conservation and elaboration of vertebrate enhancers.

    PubMed

    Parker, Hugo J; Sauka-Spengler, Tatjana; Bronner, Marianne; Elgar, Greg

    2014-01-01

    The sea lamprey is an important model organism for investigating the evolutionary origins of vertebrates. As more vertebrate genome sequences are obtained, evolutionary developmental biologists are becoming increasingly able to identify putative gene regulatory elements across the breadth of the vertebrate taxa. The identification of these regions makes it possible to address how changes at the genomic level have led to changes in developmental gene regulatory networks and ultimately to the evolution of morphological diversity. Comparative genomics approaches using sea lamprey have already predicted a number of such regulatory elements in the lamprey genome. Functional characterisation of these sequences and other similar elements requires efficient reporter assays in lamprey. In this report, we describe the development of a transient transgenesis method for lamprey embryos. Focusing on conserved non-coding elements (CNEs), we use this method to investigate their functional conservation across the vertebrate subphylum. We find instances of both functional conservation and lineage-specific functional evolution of CNEs across vertebrates, emphasising the utility of functionally testing homologous CNEs in their host species.

  16. Full-length RNA structure prediction of the HIV-1 genome reveals a conserved core domain

    PubMed Central

    Sükösd, Zsuzsanna; Andersen, Ebbe S.; Seemann, Stefan E.; Jensen, Mads Krogh; Hansen, Mathias; Gorodkin, Jan; Kjems, Jørgen

    2015-01-01

    A distance constrained secondary structural model of the ≈10 kb RNA genome of the HIV-1 has been predicted but higher-order structures, involving long distance interactions, are currently unknown. We present the first global RNA secondary structure model for the HIV-1 genome, which integrates both comparative structure analysis and information from experimental data in a full-length prediction without distance constraints. Besides recovering known structural elements, we predict several novel structural elements that are conserved in HIV-1 evolution. Our results also indicate that the structure of the HIV-1 genome is highly variable in most regions, with a limited number of stable and conserved RNA secondary structures. Most interesting, a set of long distance interactions form a core organizing structure (COS) that organize the genome into three major structural domains. Despite overlapping protein-coding regions the COS is supported by a particular high frequency of compensatory base changes, suggesting functional importance for this element. This new structural element potentially organizes the whole genome into three major domains protruding from a conserved core structure with potential roles in replication and evolution for the virus. PMID:26476446

  17. Full-length RNA structure prediction of the HIV-1 genome reveals a conserved core domain.

    PubMed

    Sükösd, Zsuzsanna; Andersen, Ebbe S; Seemann, Stefan E; Jensen, Mads Krogh; Hansen, Mathias; Gorodkin, Jan; Kjems, Jørgen

    2015-12-02

    A distance constrained secondary structural model of the ≈10 kb RNA genome of the HIV-1 has been predicted but higher-order structures, involving long distance interactions, are currently unknown. We present the first global RNA secondary structure model for the HIV-1 genome, which integrates both comparative structure analysis and information from experimental data in a full-length prediction without distance constraints. Besides recovering known structural elements, we predict several novel structural elements that are conserved in HIV-1 evolution. Our results also indicate that the structure of the HIV-1 genome is highly variable in most regions, with a limited number of stable and conserved RNA secondary structures. Most interesting, a set of long distance interactions form a core organizing structure (COS) that organize the genome into three major structural domains. Despite overlapping protein-coding regions the COS is supported by a particular high frequency of compensatory base changes, suggesting functional importance for this element. This new structural element potentially organizes the whole genome into three major domains protruding from a conserved core structure with potential roles in replication and evolution for the virus.

  18. Identification of Telomerase RNAs from Filamentous Fungi Reveals Conservation with Vertebrates and Yeasts

    PubMed Central

    Kuprys, Paulius V.; Davis, Shaun M.; Hauer, Tyler M.; Meltser, Max; Tzfati, Yehuda; Kirk, Karen E.

    2013-01-01

    Telomeres are the nucleoprotein complexes at eukaryotic chromosomal ends. Telomeric DNA is synthesized by the ribonucleoprotein telomerase, which comprises a telomerase reverse transcriptase (TERT) and a telomerase RNA (TER). TER contains a template for telomeric DNA synthesis. Filamentous fungi possess extremely short and tightly regulated telomeres. Although TERT is well conserved between most organisms, TER is highly divergent and thus difficult to identify. In order to identify the TER sequence, we used the unusually long telomeric repeat sequence of Aspergillus oryzae together with reverse-transcription-PCR and identified a transcribed sequence that contains the potential template within a region predicted to be single stranded. We report the discovery of TERs from twelve other related filamentous fungi using comparative genomic analysis. These TERs exhibited strong conservation with the vertebrate template sequence, and two of these potentially use the identical template as humans. We demonstrate the existence of important processing elements required for the maturation of yeast TERs such as an Sm site, a 5′ splice site and a branch point, within the newly identified TER sequences. RNA folding programs applied to the TER sequences show the presence of secondary structures necessary for telomerase activity, such as a yeast-like template boundary, pseudoknot, and a vertebrate-like three-way junction. These telomerase RNAs identified from filamentous fungi display conserved structural elements from both yeast and vertebrate TERs. These findings not only provide insights into the structure and evolution of a complex RNA but also provide molecular tools to further study telomere dynamics in filamentous fungi. PMID:23555591

  19. Conserved Hydration Sites in Pin1 Reveal a Distinctive Water Recognition Motif in Proteins.

    PubMed

    Barman, Arghya; Smitherman, Crystal; Souffrant, Michael; Gadda, Giovanni; Hamelberg, Donald

    2016-01-25

    Structurally conserved water molecules are important for biomolecular stability, flexibility, and function. X-ray crystallographic studies of Pin1 have resolved a number of water molecules around the enzyme, including two highly conserved water molecules within the protein. The functional role of these localized water molecules remains unknown and unexplored. Pin1 catalyzes cis/trans isomerizations of peptidyl prolyl bonds that are preceded by a phosphorylated serine or threonine residue. Pin1 is involved in many subcellular signaling processes and is a potential therapeutic target for the treatment of several life threatening diseases. Here, we investigate the significance of these structurally conserved water molecules in the catalytic domain of Pin1 using molecular dynamics (MD) simulations, free energy calculations, analysis of X-ray crystal structures, and circular dichroism (CD) experiments. MD simulations and free energy calculations suggest the tighter binding water molecule plays a crucial role in maintaining the integrity and stability of a critical hydrogen-bonding network in the active site. The second water molecule is exchangeable with bulk solvent and is found in a distinctive helix-turn-coil motif. Structural bioinformatics analysis of nonredundant X-ray crystallographic protein structures in the Protein Data Bank (PDB) suggest this motif is present in several other proteins and can act as a water site, akin to the calcium EF hand. CD experiments suggest the isolated motif is in a distorted PII conformation and requires the protein environment to fully form the α-helix-turn-coil motif. This study provides valuable insights into the role of hydration in the structural integrity of Pin1 that can be exploited in protein engineering and drug design.

  20. Comparative proteomics reveals a significant bias toward alternative protein isoforms with conserved structure and function.

    PubMed

    Ezkurdia, Iakes; del Pozo, Angela; Frankish, Adam; Rodriguez, Jose Manuel; Harrow, Jennifer; Ashman, Keith; Valencia, Alfonso; Tress, Michael L

    2012-09-01

    Advances in high-throughput mass spectrometry are making proteomics an increasingly important tool in genome annotation projects. Peptides detected in mass spectrometry experiments can be used to validate gene models and verify the translation of putative coding sequences (CDSs). Here, we have identified peptides that cover 35% of the genes annotated by the GENCODE consortium for the human genome as part of a comprehensive analysis of experimental spectra from two large publicly available mass spectrometry databases. We detected the translation to protein of "novel" and "putative" protein-coding transcripts as well as transcripts annotated as pseudogenes and nonsense-mediated decay targets. We provide a detailed overview of the population of alternatively spliced protein isoforms that are detectable by peptide identification methods. We found that 150 genes expressed multiple alternative protein isoforms. This constitutes the largest set of reliably confirmed alternatively spliced proteins yet discovered. Three groups of genes were highly overrepresented. We detected alternative isoforms for 10 of the 25 possible heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoproteins, proteins with a key role in the splicing process. Alternative isoforms generated from interchangeable homologous exons and from short indels were also significantly enriched, both in human experiments and in parallel analyses of mouse and Drosophila proteomics experiments. Our results show that a surprisingly high proportion (almost 25%) of the detected alternative isoforms are only subtly different from their constitutive counterparts. Many of the alternative splicing events that give rise to these alternative isoforms are conserved in mouse. It was striking that very few of these conserved splicing events broke Pfam functional domains or would damage globular protein structures. This evidence of a strong bias toward subtle differences in CDS and likely conserved cellular function and structure is remarkable and

  1. Functional studies of the Ciona intestinalis myogenic regulatory factor reveal conserved features of chordate myogenesis.

    PubMed

    Izzi, Stephanie A; Colantuono, Bonnie J; Sullivan, Kelly; Khare, Parul; Meedel, Thomas H

    2013-04-15

    Ci-MRF is the sole myogenic regulatory factor (MRF) of the ascidian Ciona intestinalis, an invertebrate chordate. In order to investigate its properties we developed a simple in vivo assay based on misexpressing Ci-MRF in the notochord of Ciona embryos. We used this assay to examine the roles of three structural motifs that are conserved among MRFs: an alanine-threonine (Ala-Thr) dipeptide of the basic domain that is known in vertebrates as the myogenic code, a cysteine/histidine-rich (C/H) domain found just N-terminal to the basic domain, and a carboxy-terminal amphipathic α-helix referred to as Helix III. We show that the Ala-Thr dipeptide is necessary for normal Ci-MRF function, and that while eliminating the C/H domain or Helix III individually has no demonstrable effect on Ci-MRF, simultaneous loss of both motifs significantly reduces its activity. Our studies also indicate that direct interaction between CiMRF and an essential E-box of Ciona Troponin I is required for the expression of this muscle-specific gene and that multiple classes of MRF-regulated genes exist in Ciona. These findings are consistent with substantial conservation of MRF-directed myogenesis in chordates and demonstrate for the first time that the Ala/Thr dipeptide of the basic domain of an invertebrate MRF behaves as a myogenic code.

  2. The Large Mitochondrial Genome of Symbiodinium minutum Reveals Conserved Noncoding Sequences between Dinoflagellates and Apicomplexans

    PubMed Central

    Shoguchi, Eiichi; Shinzato, Chuya; Hisata, Kanako; Satoh, Nori; Mungpakdee, Sutada

    2015-01-01

    Even though mitochondrial genomes, which characterize eukaryotic cells, were first discovered more than 50 years ago, mitochondrial genomics remains an important topic in molecular biology and genome sciences. The Phylum Alveolata comprises three major groups (ciliates, apicomplexans, and dinoflagellates), the mitochondrial genomes of which have diverged widely. Even though the gene content of dinoflagellate mitochondrial genomes is reportedly comparable to that of apicomplexans, the highly fragmented and rearranged genome structures of dinoflagellates have frustrated whole genomic analysis. Consequently, noncoding sequences and gene arrangements of dinoflagellate mitochondrial genomes have not been well characterized. Here we report that the continuous assembled genome (∼326 kb) of the dinoflagellate, Symbiodinium minutum, is AT-rich (∼64.3%) and that it contains three protein-coding genes. Based upon in silico analysis, the remaining 99% of the genome comprises transcriptomic noncoding sequences. RNA edited sites and unique, possible start and stop codons clarify conserved regions among dinoflagellates. Our massive transcriptome analysis shows that almost all regions of the genome are transcribed, including 27 possible fragmented ribosomal RNA genes and 12 uncharacterized small RNAs that are similar to mitochondrial RNA genes of the malarial parasite, Plasmodium falciparum. Gene map comparisons show that gene order is only slightly conserved between S. minutum and P. falciparum. However, small RNAs and intergenic sequences share sequence similarities with P. falciparum, suggesting that the function of noncoding sequences has been preserved despite development of very different genome structures. PMID:26199191

  3. CDK1 structures reveal conserved and unique features of the essential cell cycle CDK

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Nicholas R.; Korolchuk, Svitlana; Martin, Mathew P.; Stanley, Will A.; Moukhametzianov, Rouslan; Noble, Martin E. M.; Endicott, Jane A.

    2015-01-01

    CDK1 is the only essential cell cycle CDK in human cells and is required for successful completion of M-phase. It is the founding member of the CDK family and is conserved across all eukaryotes. Here we report the crystal structures of complexes of CDK1–Cks1 and CDK1–cyclin B–Cks2. These structures confirm the conserved nature of the inactive monomeric CDK fold and its ability to be remodelled by cyclin binding. Relative to CDK2–cyclin A, CDK1–cyclin B is less thermally stable, has a smaller interfacial surface, is more susceptible to activation segment dephosphorylation and shows differences in the substrate sequence features that determine activity. Both CDK1 and CDK2 are potential cancer targets for which selective compounds are required. We also describe the first structure of CDK1 bound to a potent ATP-competitive inhibitor and identify aspects of CDK1 structure and plasticity that might be exploited to develop CDK1-selective inhibitors. PMID:25864384

  4. Conservation of chromosomes syntenic with avian autosomes in squamate reptiles revealed by comparative chromosome painting.

    PubMed

    Pokorná, Martina; Giovannotti, Massimo; Kratochvíl, Lukáš; Caputo, Vincenzo; Olmo, Ettore; Ferguson-Smith, Malcolm A; Rens, Willem

    2012-08-01

    In contrast to mammals, birds exhibit a slow rate of chromosomal evolution. It is not clear whether high chromosome conservation is an evolutionary novelty of birds or was inherited from an earlier avian ancestor. The evolutionary conservatism of macrochromosomes between birds and turtles supports the latter possibility; however, the rate of chromosomal evolution is largely unknown in other sauropsids. In squamates, we previously reported strong conservatism of the chromosomes syntenic with the avian Z, which could reflect a peculiarity of this part of the genome. The chromosome 1 of iguanians and snakes is largely syntenic with chromosomes 3, 5 and 7 of the avian ancestral karyotype. In this project, we used comparative chromosome painting to determine how widely this synteny is conserved across nine families covering most of the main lineages of Squamata. The results suggest that the association of the avian ancestral chromosomes 3, 5 and 7 can be dated back to at least the early Jurassic and could be an ancestral characteristic for Unidentata (Serpentes, Iguania, Anguimorpha, Laterata and Scinciformata). In Squamata chromosome conservatism therefore also holds for the parts of the genome which are homologous to bird autosomes, and following on from this, a slow rate of chromosomal evolution could be a common characteristic of all sauropsids. The large evolutionary stasis in chromosome organization in birds therefore seems to be inherited from their ancestors, and it is particularly striking in comparison with mammals, probably the only major tetrapod lineage with an increased rate of chromosomal rearrangements as a whole.

  5. A Comparative Transcriptomic Analysis Reveals Conserved Features of Stem Cell Pluripotency in Planarians and Mammals

    PubMed Central

    Labbé, Roselyne M.; Irimia, Manuel; Currie, Ko W.; Lin, Alexander; Zhu, Shu Jun; Brown, David D.R.; Ross, Eric J.; Voisin, Veronique; Bader, Gary D.; Blencowe, Benjamin J.; Pearson, Bret J.

    2014-01-01

    Many long-lived species of animals require the function of adult stem cells throughout their lives. However, the transcriptomes of stem cells in invertebrates and vertebrates have not been compared, and consequently, ancestral regulatory circuits that control stem cell populations remain poorly defined. In this study, we have used data from high-throughput RNA sequencing to compare the transcriptomes of pluripotent adult stem cells from planarians with the transcriptomes of human and mouse pluripotent embryonic stem cells. From a stringently defined set of 4,432 orthologs shared between planarians, mice and humans, we identified 123 conserved genes that are ≥5-fold differentially expressed in stem cells from all three species. Guided by this gene set, we used RNAi screening in adult planarians to discover novel stem cell regulators, which we found to affect the stem cell-associated functions of tissue homeostasis, regeneration, and stem cell maintenance. Examples of genes that disrupted these processes included the orthologs of TBL3, PSD12, TTC27, and RACK1. From these analyses, we concluded that by comparing stem cell transcriptomes from diverse species, it is possible to uncover conserved factors that function in stem cell biology. These results provide insights into which genes comprised the ancestral circuitry underlying the control of stem cell self-renewal and pluripotency. PMID:22696458

  6. Comparative genomics reveals conservation of filaggrin and loss of caspase-14 in dolphins.

    PubMed

    Strasser, Bettina; Mlitz, Veronika; Fischer, Heinz; Tschachler, Erwin; Eckhart, Leopold

    2015-05-01

    The expression of filaggrin and its stepwise proteolytic degradation are critical events in the terminal differentiation of epidermal keratinocytes and in the formation of the skin barrier to the environment. Here, we investigated whether the evolutionary transition from a terrestrial to a fully aquatic lifestyle of cetaceans, that is dolphins and whales, has been associated with changes in genes encoding filaggrin and proteins involved in the processing of filaggrin. We used comparative genomics, PCRs and re-sequencing of gene segments to screen for the presence and integrity of genes coding for filaggrin and proteases implicated in the maturation of (pro)filaggrin. Filaggrin has been conserved in dolphins (bottlenose dolphin, orca and baiji) but has been lost in whales (sperm whale and minke whale). All other S100 fused-type genes have been lost in cetaceans. Among filaggrin-processing proteases, aspartic peptidase retroviral-like 1 (ASPRV1), also known as saspase, has been conserved, whereas caspase-14 has been lost in all cetaceans investigated. In conclusion, our results suggest that filaggrin is dispensable for the acquisition of fully aquatic lifestyles of whales, whereas it appears to confer an evolutionary advantage to dolphins. The discordant evolution of filaggrin, saspase and caspase-14 in cetaceans indicates that the biological roles of these proteins are not strictly interdependent.

  7. A comparative transcriptomic analysis reveals conserved features of stem cell pluripotency in planarians and mammals.

    PubMed

    Labbé, Roselyne M; Irimia, Manuel; Currie, Ko W; Lin, Alexander; Zhu, Shu Jun; Brown, David D R; Ross, Eric J; Voisin, Veronique; Bader, Gary D; Blencowe, Benjamin J; Pearson, Bret J

    2012-08-01

    Many long-lived species of animals require the function of adult stem cells throughout their lives. However, the transcriptomes of stem cells in invertebrates and vertebrates have not been compared, and consequently, ancestral regulatory circuits that control stem cell populations remain poorly defined. In this study, we have used data from high-throughput RNA sequencing to compare the transcriptomes of pluripotent adult stem cells from planarians with the transcriptomes of human and mouse pluripotent embryonic stem cells. From a stringently defined set of 4,432 orthologs shared between planarians, mice and humans, we identified 123 conserved genes that are ≥5-fold differentially expressed in stem cells from all three species. Guided by this gene set, we used RNAi screening in adult planarians to discover novel stem cell regulators, which we found to affect the stem cell-associated functions of tissue homeostasis, regeneration, and stem cell maintenance. Examples of genes that disrupted these processes included the orthologs of TBL3, PSD12, TTC27, and RACK1. From these analyses, we concluded that by comparing stem cell transcriptomes from diverse species, it is possible to uncover conserved factors that function in stem cell biology. These results provide insights into which genes comprised the ancestral circuitry underlying the control of stem cell self-renewal and pluripotency.

  8. Genome-Scale Mapping of Escherichia coli σ54 Reveals Widespread, Conserved Intragenic Binding

    PubMed Central

    Bonocora, Richard P.; Smith, Carol; Lapierre, Pascal; Wade, Joseph T.

    2015-01-01

    Bacterial RNA polymerases must associate with a σ factor to bind promoter DNA and initiate transcription. There are two families of σ factor: the σ70 family and the σ54 family. Members of the σ54 family are distinct in their ability to bind promoter DNA sequences, in the context of RNA polymerase holoenzyme, in a transcriptionally inactive state. Here, we map the genome-wide association of Escherichia coli σ54, the archetypal member of the σ54 family. Thus, we vastly expand the list of known σ54 binding sites to 135. Moreover, we estimate that there are more than 250 σ54 sites in total. Strikingly, the majority of σ54 binding sites are located inside genes. The location and orientation of intragenic σ54 binding sites is non-random, and many intragenic σ54 binding sites are conserved. We conclude that many intragenic σ54 binding sites are likely to be functional. Consistent with this assertion, we identify three conserved, intragenic σ54 promoters that drive transcription of mRNAs with unusually long 5ʹ UTRs. PMID:26425847

  9. Comparative genomics reveals conservation of filaggrin and loss of caspase-14 in dolphins

    PubMed Central

    Strasser, Bettina; Mlitz, Veronika; Fischer, Heinz; Tschachler, Erwin; Eckhart, Leopold

    2015-01-01

    The expression of filaggrin and its stepwise proteolytic degradation are critical events in the terminal differentiation of epidermal keratinocytes and in the formation of the skin barrier to the environment. Here, we investigated whether the evolutionary transition from a terrestrial to a fully aquatic lifestyle of cetaceans, that is dolphins and whales, has been associated with changes in genes encoding filaggrin and proteins involved in the processing of filaggrin. We used comparative genomics, PCRs and re-sequencing of gene segments to screen for the presence and integrity of genes coding for filaggrin and proteases implicated in the maturation of (pro)filaggrin. Filaggrin has been conserved in dolphins (bottlenose dolphin, orca and baiji) but has been lost in whales (sperm whale and minke whale). All other S100 fused-type genes have been lost in cetaceans. Among filaggrin-processing proteases, aspartic peptidase retroviral-like 1 (ASPRV1), also known as saspase, has been conserved, whereas caspase-14 has been lost in all cetaceans investigated. In conclusion, our results suggest that filaggrin is dispensable for the acquisition of fully aquatic lifestyles of whales, whereas it appears to confer an evolutionary advantage to dolphins. The discordant evolution of filaggrin, saspase and caspase-14 in cetaceans indicates that the biological roles of these proteins are not strictly interdependent. PMID:25739514

  10. CDK1 structures reveal conserved and unique features of the essential cell cycle CDK

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brown, Nicholas R.; Korolchuk, Svitlana; Martin, Mathew P.; Stanley, Will A.; Moukhametzianov, Rouslan; Noble, Martin E. M.; Endicott, Jane A.

    2015-04-01

    CDK1 is the only essential cell cycle CDK in human cells and is required for successful completion of M-phase. It is the founding member of the CDK family and is conserved across all eukaryotes. Here we report the crystal structures of complexes of CDK1-Cks1 and CDK1-cyclin B-Cks2. These structures confirm the conserved nature of the inactive monomeric CDK fold and its ability to be remodelled by cyclin binding. Relative to CDK2-cyclin A, CDK1-cyclin B is less thermally stable, has a smaller interfacial surface, is more susceptible to activation segment dephosphorylation and shows differences in the substrate sequence features that determine activity. Both CDK1 and CDK2 are potential cancer targets for which selective compounds are required. We also describe the first structure of CDK1 bound to a potent ATP-competitive inhibitor and identify aspects of CDK1 structure and plasticity that might be exploited to develop CDK1-selective inhibitors.

  11. Significance of satellite DNA revealed by conservation of a widespread repeat DNA sequence among angiosperms.

    PubMed

    Mehrotra, Shweta; Goel, Shailendra; Raina, Soom Nath; Rajpal, Vijay Rani

    2014-08-01

    The analysis of plant genome structure and evolution requires comprehensive characterization of repetitive sequences that make up the majority of plant nuclear DNA. In the present study, we analyzed the nature of pCtKpnI-I and pCtKpnI-II tandem repeated sequences, reported earlier in Carthamus tinctorius. Interestingly, homolog of pCtKpnI-I repeat sequence was also found to be present in widely divergent families of angiosperms. pCtKpnI-I showed high sequence similarity but low copy number among various taxa of different families of angiosperms analyzed. In comparison, pCtKpnI-II was specific to the genus Carthamus and was not present in any other taxa analyzed. The molecular structure of pCtKpnI-I was analyzed in various unrelated taxa of angiosperms to decipher the evolutionary conserved nature of the sequence and its possible functional role.

  12. The crystal structure of Zika virus NS5 reveals conserved drug targets.

    PubMed

    Duan, Wenqian; Song, Hao; Wang, Haiyuan; Chai, Yan; Su, Chao; Qi, Jianxun; Shi, Yi; Gao, George F

    2017-04-03

    Zika virus (ZIKV) has emerged as major health concern, as ZIKV infection has been shown to be associated with microcephaly, severe neurological disease and possibly male sterility. As the largest protein component within the ZIKV replication complex, NS5 plays key roles in the life cycle and survival of the virus through its N-terminal methyltransferase (MTase) and C-terminal RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) domains. Here, we present the crystal structures of ZIKV NS5 MTase in complex with an RNA cap analogue ((m7)GpppA) and the free NS5 RdRp. We have identified the conserved features of ZIKV NS5 MTase and RdRp structures that could lead to development of current antiviral inhibitors being used against flaviviruses, including dengue virus and West Nile virus, to treat ZIKV infection. These results should inform and accelerate the structure-based design of antiviral compounds against ZIKV.

  13. Structures of Xenopus Embryonic Epidermal Lectin Reveal a Conserved Mechanism of Microbial Glycan Recognition.

    PubMed

    Wangkanont, Kittikhun; Wesener, Darryl A; Vidani, Jack A; Kiessling, Laura L; Forest, Katrina T

    2016-03-11

    Intelectins (X-type lectins), broadly distributed throughout chordates, have been implicated in innate immunity. Xenopus laevis embryonic epidermal lectin (XEEL), an intelectin secreted into environmental water by the X. laevis embryo, is postulated to function as a defense against microbes. XEEL is homologous (64% identical) to human intelectin-1 (hIntL-1), which is also implicated in innate immune defense. We showed previously that hIntL-1 binds microbial glycans bearing exocyclic vicinal diol groups. It is unknown whether XEEL has the same ligand specificity. Also unclear is whether XEEL and hIntL-1 have similar quaternary structures, as XEEL lacks the corresponding cysteine residues in hIntL-1 that stabilize the disulfide-linked trimer. These observations prompted us to further characterize XEEL. We found that hIntL-1 and XEEL have similar structural features. Even without the corresponding intermolecular disulfide bonds present in hIntL-1, the carbohydrate recognition domain of XEEL (XEELCRD) forms a stable trimer in solution. The structure of XEELCRD in complex with d-glycerol-1-phosphate, a residue present in microbe-specific glycans, indicated that the exocyclic vicinal diol coordinates to a protein-bound calcium ion. This ligand-binding mode is conserved between XEEL and hIntL-1. The domain architecture of full-length XEEL is reminiscent of a barbell, with two sets of three glycan-binding sites oriented in opposite directions. This orientation is consistent with our observation that XEEL can promote the agglutination of specific serotypes of Streptococcus pneumoniae. These data support a role for XEEL in innate immunity, and they highlight structural and functional conservation of X-type lectins among chordates.

  14. MLST analysis reveals a highly conserved core genome among poultry isolates of Clostridium septicum.

    PubMed

    Neumann, Anthony P; Rehberger, Thomas G

    2009-06-01

    Clostridium septicum is a highly virulent, anaerobic bacterium capable of establishing necrotizing tissue infections and forming heat resistant endospores. Disease is primarily facilitated by secretion of numerous toxic products including a lethal pore-forming cytolysin. Spontaneously occurring clostridial myonecrosis involving C. septicum has recently reemerged as a concern for many poultry producers. However, despite its increasing prevalence, the epidemiology of infection and population structure of C. septicum remains largely unknown. In this study a multilocus sequence typing (MLST) approach was utilized to examine evolutionary relationships within a diverse collection of C. septicum isolates recovered from poultry flocks experiencing episodes of gangrenous dermatitis. The 109 isolates examined represented 42 turkey flocks and 24 different flocks of broiler chickens as well as C. septicum type strain, ATCC 12464. Isolates were recovered predominantly from gangrenous lesions although isolates from livers, gastrointestinal tracts, spleens and blood were included. The loci analyzed were csa, the major lethal toxin produced by C. septicum, and the housekeeping genes gyrA, groEL, dnaK, recA, tpi, ddl, colA and glpK. These loci were included in part because of their previous use in MLST analysis of Clostridium perfringens and Clostridium difficile. Results indicated a high level of conservation present within these housekeeping gene fragments when compared to what has been previously reported for the aforementioned clostridia. Of the 5352 bp of sequence data examined for each isolate, 99.7% (5335/5352) was absolutely conserved among the 109 isolates. Only one of the ten unique sequence types, or allelic profiles, identified among the isolates was recovered from both turkeys and broiler chickens suggesting some host species preference. Phylogenetic analyses identified two unique clusters, or clonal complexes, among these poultry isolates which may have important

  15. Conserved evolutionary units in the heme-copper oxidase superfamily revealed by novel homologous protein families

    PubMed Central

    Pei, Jimin; Li, Wenlin; Kinch, Lisa N; Grishin, Nick V

    2014-01-01

    The heme-copper oxidase (HCO) superfamily includes HCOs in aerobic respiratory chains and nitric oxide reductases (NORs) in the denitrification pathway. The HCO/NOR catalytic subunit has a core structure consisting of 12 transmembrane helices (TMHs) arranged in three-fold rotational pseudosymmetry, with six conserved histidines for heme and metal binding. Using sensitive sequence similarity searches, we detected a number of novel HCO/NOR homologs and named them HCO Homology (HCOH) proteins. Several HCOH families possess only four TMHs that exhibit the most pronounced similarity to the last four TMHs (TMHs 9–12) of HCOs/NORs. Encoded by independent genes, four-TMH HCOH proteins represent a single evolutionary unit (EU) that relates to each of the three homologous EUs of HCOs/NORs comprising TMHs 1–4, TMHs 5–8, and TMHs 9–12. Single-EU HCOH proteins could form homotrimers or heterotrimers to maintain the general structure and ligand-binding sites defined by the HCO/NOR catalytic subunit fold. The remaining HCOH families, including NnrS, have 12-TMHs and three EUs. Most three-EU HCOH proteins possess two conserved histidines and could bind a single heme. Limited experimental studies and genomic context analysis suggest that many HCOH proteins could function in the denitrification pathway and in detoxification of reactive molecules such as nitric oxide. HCO/NOR catalytic subunits exhibit remarkable structural similarity to the homotrimers of MAPEG (membrane-associated proteins in eicosanoid and glutathione metabolism) proteins. Gene duplication, fusion, and fission likely play important roles in the evolution of HCOs/NORs and HCOH proteins. PMID:24931479

  16. Annotation of Protein Domains Reveals Remarkable Conservation in the Functional Make up of Proteomes Across Superkingdoms.

    PubMed

    Nasir, Arshan; Naeem, Aisha; Khan, Muhammad Jawad; Nicora, Horacio D Lopez; Caetano-Anollés, Gustavo

    2011-11-08

    The functional repertoire of a cell is largely embodied in its proteome, the collection of proteins encoded in the genome of an organism. The molecular functions of proteins are the direct consequence of their structure and structure can be inferred from sequence using hidden Markov models of structural recognition. Here we analyze the functional annotation of protein domain structures in almost a thousand sequenced genomes, exploring the functional and structural diversity of proteomes. We find there is a remarkable conservation in the distribution of domains with respect to the molecular functions they perform in the three superkingdoms of life. In general, most of the protein repertoire is spent in functions related to metabolic processes but there are significant differences in the usage of domains for regulatory and extra-cellular processes both within and between superkingdoms. Our results support the hypotheses that the proteomes of superkingdom Eukarya evolved via genome expansion mechanisms that were directed towards innovating new domain architectures for regulatory and extra/intracellular process functions needed for example to maintain the integrity of multicellular structure or to interact with environmental biotic and abiotic factors (e.g., cell signaling and adhesion, immune responses, and toxin production). Proteomes of microbial superkingdoms Archaea and Bacteria retained fewer numbers of domains and maintained simple and smaller protein repertoires. Viruses appear to play an important role in the evolution of superkingdoms. We finally identify few genomic outliers that deviate significantly from the conserved functional design. These include Nanoarchaeum equitans, proteobacterial symbionts of insects with extremely reduced genomes, Tenericutes and Guillardia theta. These organisms spend most of their domains on information functions, including translation and transcription, rather than on metabolism and harbor a domain repertoire characteristic of

  17. Annotation of Protein Domains Reveals Remarkable Conservation in the Functional Make up of Proteomes Across Superkingdoms

    PubMed Central

    Nasir, Arshan; Naeem, Aisha; Khan, Muhammad Jawad; Lopez-Nicora, Horacio D.; Caetano-Anollés, Gustavo

    2011-01-01

    The functional repertoire of a cell is largely embodied in its proteome, the collection of proteins encoded in the genome of an organism. The molecular functions of proteins are the direct consequence of their structure and structure can be inferred from sequence using hidden Markov models of structural recognition. Here we analyze the functional annotation of protein domain structures in almost a thousand sequenced genomes, exploring the functional and structural diversity of proteomes. We find there is a remarkable conservation in the distribution of domains with respect to the molecular functions they perform in the three superkingdoms of life. In general, most of the protein repertoire is spent in functions related to metabolic processes but there are significant differences in the usage of domains for regulatory and extra-cellular processes both within and between superkingdoms. Our results support the hypotheses that the proteomes of superkingdom Eukarya evolved via genome expansion mechanisms that were directed towards innovating new domain architectures for regulatory and extra/intracellular process functions needed for example to maintain the integrity of multicellular structure or to interact with environmental biotic and abiotic factors (e.g., cell signaling and adhesion, immune responses, and toxin production). Proteomes of microbial superkingdoms Archaea and Bacteria retained fewer numbers of domains and maintained simple and smaller protein repertoires. Viruses appear to play an important role in the evolution of superkingdoms. We finally identify few genomic outliers that deviate significantly from the conserved functional design. These include Nanoarchaeum equitans, proteobacterial symbionts of insects with extremely reduced genomes, Tenericutes and Guillardia theta. These organisms spend most of their domains on information functions, including translation and transcription, rather than on metabolism and harbor a domain repertoire characteristic of

  18. High Throughput Sequencing of T Cell Antigen Receptors Reveals a Conserved TCR Repertoire.

    PubMed

    Hou, Xianliang; Lu, Chong; Chen, Sisi; Xie, Qian; Cui, Guangying; Chen, Jianing; Chen, Zhi; Wu, Zhongwen; Ding, Yulong; Ye, Ping; Dai, Yong; Diao, Hongyan

    2016-03-01

    The T-cell receptor (TCR) repertoire is a mirror of the human immune system that reflects processes caused by infections, cancer, autoimmunity, and aging. Next-generation sequencing has become a powerful tool for deep TCR profiling. Herein, we used this technology to study the repertoire features of TCR beta chain in the blood of healthy individuals.Peripheral blood samples were collected from 10 healthy donors. T cells were isolated with anti-human CD3 magnetic beads according to the manufacturer's protocol. We then combined multiplex-PCR, Illumina sequencing, and IMGT/High V-QUEST to analyze the characteristics and polymorphisms of the TCR.Most of the individual T cell clones were present at very low frequencies, suggesting that they had not undergone clonal expansion. The usage frequencies of the TCR beta variable, beta joining, and beta diversity gene segments were similar among T cells from different individuals. Notably, the usage frequency of individual nucleotides and amino acids within complementarity-determining region (CDR3) intervals was remarkably consistent between individuals. Moreover, our data show that terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase activity was biased toward the insertion of G (31.92%) and C (27.14%) over A (21.82%) and T (19.12%) nucleotides.Some conserved features could be observed in the composition of CDR3, which may inform future studies of human TCR gene recombination.

  19. High Throughput Sequencing of T Cell Antigen Receptors Reveals a Conserved TCR Repertoire

    PubMed Central

    Hou, Xianliang; Lu, Chong; Chen, Sisi; Xie, Qian; Cui, Guangying; Chen, Jianing; Chen, Zhi; Wu, Zhongwen; Ding, Yulong; Ye, Ping; Dai, Yong; Diao, Hongyan

    2016-01-01

    Abstract The T-cell receptor (TCR) repertoire is a mirror of the human immune system that reflects processes caused by infections, cancer, autoimmunity, and aging. Next-generation sequencing has become a powerful tool for deep TCR profiling. Herein, we used this technology to study the repertoire features of TCR beta chain in the blood of healthy individuals. Peripheral blood samples were collected from 10 healthy donors. T cells were isolated with anti-human CD3 magnetic beads according to the manufacturer's protocol. We then combined multiplex-PCR, Illumina sequencing, and IMGT/High V-QUEST to analyze the characteristics and polymorphisms of the TCR. Most of the individual T cell clones were present at very low frequencies, suggesting that they had not undergone clonal expansion. The usage frequencies of the TCR beta variable, beta joining, and beta diversity gene segments were similar among T cells from different individuals. Notably, the usage frequency of individual nucleotides and amino acids within complementarity-determining region (CDR3) intervals was remarkably consistent between individuals. Moreover, our data show that terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase activity was biased toward the insertion of G (31.92%) and C (27.14%) over A (21.82%) and T (19.12%) nucleotides. Some conserved features could be observed in the composition of CDR3, which may inform future studies of human TCR gene recombination. PMID:26962778

  20. Colocalization of WT1 and cell proliferation reveals conserved mechanisms in temperature-dependent sex determination.

    PubMed

    Schmahl, Jennifer; Yao, Humphrey H; Pierucci-Alves, Fernando; Capel, Blanche

    2003-04-01

    During vertebrate development the gonad has two possible fates, the testis or the ovary. The choice between these fates is made by a variety of sex-determining mechanisms, from the sex-determining gene on the Y chromosome (Sry) in mammals, to nongenetic temperature-dependent systems in many reptiles. Despite the differences in the mechanisms at the top of the sex-determining cascade, the resulting morphology and many genes involved in early testis and ovarian development are common to most vertebrates, leading to the hypothesis that the underlying processes of sex determination are conserved. In this study, we examined the early steps of gonad development in the red-eared slider turtle (Trachemys scripta), a species that uses the temperature of egg incubation to determine sex. A dramatic increase in cell proliferation was observed in the male gonad during the earliest stages of sex determination. Using the localization of Wilms' Tumor suppressor 1 (WT1), we determined that this proliferation increase occurred in a population that contained pre-Sertoli cells. The proliferation of pre-Sertoli cells has been documented during sex determination in both mice and alligators, suggesting that proliferation of this cell type has an important role in vertebrate testis organogenesis and the determination of male fate.

  1. Hybridization capture reveals evolution and conservation across the entire Koala retrovirus genome.

    PubMed

    Tsangaras, Kyriakos; Siracusa, Matthew C; Nikolaidis, Nikolas; Ishida, Yasuko; Cui, Pin; Vielgrader, Hanna; Helgen, Kristofer M; Roca, Alfred L; Greenwood, Alex D

    2014-01-01

    The koala retrovirus (KoRV) is the only retrovirus known to be in the midst of invading the germ line of its host species. Hybridization capture and next generation sequencing were used on modern and museum DNA samples of koala (Phascolarctos cinereus) to examine ca. 130 years of evolution across the full KoRV genome. Overall, the entire proviral genome appeared to be conserved across time in sequence, protein structure and transcriptional binding sites. A total of 138 polymorphisms were detected, of which 72 were found in more than one individual. At every polymorphic site in the museum koalas, one of the character states matched that of modern KoRV. Among non-synonymous polymorphisms, radical substitutions involving large physiochemical differences between amino acids were elevated in env, potentially reflecting anti-viral immune pressure or avoidance of receptor interference. Polymorphisms were not detected within two functional regions believed to affect infectivity. Host sequences flanking proviral integration sites were also captured; with few proviral loci shared among koalas. Recently described variants of KoRV, designated KoRV-B and KoRV-J, were not detected in museum samples, suggesting that these variants may be of recent origin.

  2. Comparative mapping reveals partial conservation of synteny at the apomixis locus in Paspalum spp.

    PubMed

    Pupilli, F; Martinez, E J; Busti, A; Calderini, O; Quarin, C L; Arcioni, S

    2004-01-01

    In plants, gametophytic apomixis is a form of asexual reproduction that leads to the formation of seed-derived offspring that are genetically identical to the mother plant. A common set of RFLP markers, including five rice anchor markers previously shown to be linked to apomixis in Paspalum simplex, were used to detect linkage with apomixis in P. notatum and P. malacophyllum. A comparative map of the region around the apomixis locus was constructed for the three Paspalum species, and compared to the rice map. The locus that controls apomixis in P. simplex was almost completely conserved in the closely related species P. malacophyllum, whereas it was only partially represented in the distantly related species P. notatum. Although strong synteny of markers was noted between this locus and a portion of rice chromosome 12 in both P. simplex and P. malacophyllum, the same locus in P. notatum was localized to a hybrid chromosome which carries markers that map to rice chromosomes 2 and 12. All three Paspalum species showed recombination suppression at the apomixis locus; in the case of P. notatum, this might be due to a heterozygosity for a translocation that most probably negatively interferes with chromosomal pairing near the locus. A common set of markers that show linkage with apomixis in all three Paspalum species define a portion of the apomixis-controlling locus that is likely to contain genes critical for apomictic reproduction.

  3. The Trypanosome Exocyst: A Conserved Structure Revealing a New Role in Endocytosis

    PubMed Central

    Boehm, Cordula M.; Obado, Samson; Gadelha, Catarina; Kaupisch, Alexandra; Manna, Paul T.; Gould, Gwyn W.; Rout, Michael P.; Field, Mark C.

    2017-01-01

    Membrane transport is an essential component of pathogenesis for most infectious organisms. In African trypanosomes, transport to and from the plasma membrane is closely coupled to immune evasion and antigenic variation. In mammals and fungi an octameric exocyst complex mediates late steps in exocytosis, but comparative genomics suggested that trypanosomes retain only six canonical subunits, implying mechanistic divergence. We directly determined the composition of the Trypanosoma brucei exocyst by affinity isolation and demonstrate that the parasite complex is nonameric, retaining all eight canonical subunits (albeit highly divergent at the sequence level) plus a novel essential subunit, Exo99. Exo99 and Sec15 knockdowns have remarkably similar phenotypes in terms of viability and impact on morphology and trafficking pathways. Significantly, both Sec15 and Exo99 have a clear function in endocytosis, and global proteomic analysis indicates an important role in maintaining the surface proteome. Taken together these data indicate additional exocyst functions in trypanosomes, which likely include endocytosis, recycling and control of surface composition. Knockdowns in HeLa cells suggest that the role in endocytosis is shared with metazoan cells. We conclude that, whilst the trypanosome exocyst has novel components, overall functionality appears conserved, and suggest that the unique subunit may provide therapeutic opportunities. PMID:28114397

  4. Pan-cancer transcriptome analysis reveals long noncoding RNAs with conserved function

    PubMed Central

    Cabanski, Christopher R; White, Nicole M; Dang, Ha X; Silva-Fisher, Jessica M; Rauck, Corinne E; Cicka, Danielle; Maher, Christopher A

    2015-01-01

    A growing number of gene-centric studies have highlighted the emerging significance of lncRNAs in cancer. However, these studies primarily focus on a single cancer type. Therefore, we conducted a pan-cancer analysis of lncRNAs comparing tumor and matched normal expression levels using RNA-Seq data from ∼ 3,000 patients in 8 solid tumor types. While the majority of differentially expressed lncRNAs display tissue-specific expression we discovered 229 lncRNAs with outlier or differential expression across multiple cancers, which we refer to as 'onco-lncRNAs'. Due to their consistent altered expression, we hypothesize that these onco-lncRNAs may have conserved oncogenic and tumor suppressive functions across cancers. To address this, we associated the onco-lncRNAs in biological processes based on their co-expressed protein coding genes. To validate our predictions, we experimentally confirmed cell growth dependence of 2 novel oncogenic lncRNAs, onco-lncRNA-3 and onco-lncRNA-12, and a previously identified lncRNA CCAT1. Overall, we discovered lncRNAs that may have broad oncogenic and tumor suppressor roles that could significantly advance our understanding of cancer lncRNA biology. PMID:25864709

  5. Comparative Assessment of Mediterranean Gorgonian-Associated Microbial Communities Reveals Conserved Core and Locally Variant Bacteria.

    PubMed

    van de Water, Jeroen A J M; Melkonian, Rémy; Voolstra, Christian R; Junca, Howard; Beraud, Eric; Allemand, Denis; Ferrier-Pagès, Christine

    2017-02-01

    Gorgonians are key habitat-forming species of Mediterranean benthic communities, but their populations have suffered from mass mortality events linked to high summer seawater temperatures and microbial disease. However, our knowledge on the diversity, dynamics and function of gorgonian-associated microbial communities is limited. Here, we analysed the spatial variability of the microbiomes of five sympatric gorgonian species (Eunicella singularis, Eunicella cavolini, Eunicella verrucosa, Leptogorgia sarmentosa and Paramuricea clavata), collected from the Mediterranean Sea over a scale of ∼1100 km, using next-generation amplicon sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene. The microbiomes of all gorgonian species were generally dominated by members of the genus Endozoicomonas, which were at very low abundance in the surrounding seawater. Although the composition of the core microbiome (operational taxonomic units consistently present in a species) was found to be unique for each host species, significant overlap was observed. These spatially consistent associations between gorgonians and their core bacteria suggest intricate symbiotic relationships and regulation of the microbiome composition by the host. At the same time, local variations in microbiome composition were observed. Functional predictive profiling indicated that these differences could be attributed to seawater pollution. Taken together, our data indicate that gorgonian-associated microbiomes are composed of spatially conserved bacteria (core microbiome members) and locally variant members, and that local pollution may influence these local associations, potentially impacting gorgonian health.

  6. Regulation of mammalian Gli proteins by Costal 2 and PKA in Drosophila reveals Hedgehog pathway conservation.

    PubMed

    Marks, Steven A; Kalderon, Daniel

    2011-06-01

    Hedgehog (Hh) signaling activates full-length Ci/Gli family transcription factors and prevents Ci/Gli proteolytic processing to repressor forms. In the absence of Hh, Ci/Gli processing is initiated by direct Pka phosphorylation. Despite those fundamental similarities between Drosophila and mammalian Hh pathways, the differential reliance on cilia and some key signal transduction components had suggested a major divergence in the mechanisms that regulate Ci/Gli protein activities, including the role of the kinesin-family protein Costal 2 (Cos2), which directs Ci processing in Drosophila. Here, we show that Cos2 binds to three regions of Gli1, just as for Ci, and that Cos2 functions to silence mammalian Gli1 in Drosophila in a Hh-regulated manner. Cos2 and the mammalian kinesin Kif7 can also direct Gli3 and Ci processing in fly, underscoring a fundamental conserved role for Cos2 family proteins in Hh signaling. We also show that direct PKA phosphorylation regulates the activity, rather than the proteolysis of Gli in Drosophilia, and we provide evidence for an analogous action of PKA on Ci.

  7. Comprehensive analysis of imprinted genes in maize reveals allelic variation for imprinting and limited conservation with other species.

    PubMed

    Waters, Amanda J; Bilinski, Paul; Eichten, Steven R; Vaughn, Matthew W; Ross-Ibarra, Jeffrey; Gehring, Mary; Springer, Nathan M

    2013-11-26

    In plants, a subset of genes exhibit imprinting in endosperm tissue such that expression is primarily from the maternal or paternal allele. Imprinting may arise as a consequence of mechanisms for silencing of transposons during reproduction, and in some cases imprinted expression of particular genes may provide a selective advantage such that it is conserved across species. Separate mechanisms for the origin of imprinted expression patterns and maintenance of these patterns may result in substantial variation in the targets of imprinting in different species. Here we present deep sequencing of RNAs isolated from reciprocal crosses of four diverse maize genotypes, providing a comprehensive analysis that allows evaluation of imprinting at more than 95% of endosperm-expressed genes. We find that over 500 genes exhibit statistically significant parent-of-origin effects in maize endosperm tissue, but focused our analyses on a subset of these genes that had >90% expression from the maternal allele (69 genes) or from the paternal allele (108 genes) in at least one reciprocal cross. Over 10% of imprinted genes show evidence of allelic variation for imprinting. A comparison of imprinting in maize and rice reveals that 13% of genes with syntenic orthologs in both species exhibit conserved imprinting. Genes that exhibit conserved imprinting between maize and rice have elevated nonsynonymous to synonymous substitution ratios compared with other imprinted genes, suggesting a history of more rapid evolution. Together, these data suggest that imprinting only has functional relevance at a subset of loci that currently exhibit imprinting in maize.

  8. Conservation of protein abundance patterns reveals the regulatory architecture of the EGFR-MAPK pathway

    PubMed Central

    Shi, Tujin; Niepel, Mario; McDermott, Jason E.; Gao, Yuqian; Nicora, Carrie D.; Chrisler, William B.; Markillie, Lye M.; Petyuk, Vladislav A.; Smith, Richard D.; Rodland, Karin D.; Sorger, Peter K.; Qian, Wei-Jun; Wiley, H. Steven

    2016-01-01

    Various genetic mutations associated with cancer are known to alter cell signaling, but it is not clear whether they dysregulate signaling pathways by altering the abundance of pathway proteins. Using a combination of RNA sequencing and ultrasensitive targeted proteomics, we defined the primary components—16 core proteins and 10 feedback regulators—of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)–mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathway in normal human mammary epithelial cells and then quantified their absolute abundance across a panel of normal and breast cancer cell lines as well as fibroblasts. We found that core pathway proteins were present at very similar concentrations across all cell types, with a variance similar to that of proteins previously shown to display conserved abundances across species. In contrast, EGFR and transcriptionally controlled feedback regulators were present at highly variable concentrations. The absolute abundance of most core proteins was between 50,000 and 70,000 copies per cell, but the adaptors SOS1, SOS2, and GAB1 were found at far lower amounts (2000 to 5000 copies per cell). MAPK signaling showed saturation in all cells between 3000 and 10,000 occupied EGFRs, consistent with the idea that adaptors limit signaling. Our results suggest that the relative stoichiometry of core MAPK pathway proteins is very similar across different cell types, with cell-specific differences mostly restricted to variable amounts of feedback regulators and receptors. The low abundance of adaptors relative to EGFR could be responsible for previous observations that only a fraction of total cell surface EGFR is capable of rapid endocytosis, high-affinity binding, and mitogenic signaling. PMID:27405981

  9. Mutagenesis of conserved amino acids of Helicobacter pylori fur reveals residues important for function.

    PubMed

    Carpenter, Beth M; Gancz, Hanan; Benoit, Stéphane L; Evans, Sarah; Olsen, Cara H; Michel, Sarah L J; Maier, Robert J; Merrell, D Scott

    2010-10-01

    The ferric uptake regulator (Fur) of the medically important pathogen Helicobacter pylori is unique in that it has been shown to function as a repressor both in the presence of an Fe2+ cofactor and in its apo (non-Fe2+-bound) form. However, virtually nothing is known concerning the amino acid residues that are important for Fur functioning. Therefore, mutations in six conserved amino acid residues of H. pylori Fur were constructed and analyzed for their impact on both iron-bound and apo repression. In addition, accumulation of the mutant proteins, protein secondary structure, DNA binding ability, iron binding capacity, and the ability to form higher-order structures were also examined for each mutant protein. While none of the mutated residues completely abrogated the function of Fur, we were able to identify residues that were critical for both iron-bound and apo-Fur repression. One mutation, V64A, did not alter regulation of any target genes. However, each of the five remaining mutations showed an effect on either iron-bound or apo regulation. Of these, H96A, E110A, and E117A mutations altered iron-bound Fur regulation and were all shown to influence iron binding to different extents. Additionally, the H96A mutation was shown to alter Fur oligomerization, and the E110A mutation was shown to impact oligomerization and DNA binding. Conversely, the H134A mutant exhibited changes in apo-Fur regulation that were the result of alterations in DNA binding. Although the E90A mutant exhibited alterations in apo-Fur regulation, this mutation did not affect any of the assessed protein functions. This study is the first for H. pylori to analyze the roles of specific amino acid residues of Fur in function and continues to highlight the complexity of Fur regulation in this organism.

  10. Conservation through connectivity: can isotopic gradients in Africa reveal winter quarters of a migratory bird?

    PubMed

    Reichlin, Thomas S; Hobson, Keith A; Van Wilgenburg, Steven L; Schaub, Michael; Wassenaar, Leonard I; Martín-Vivaldi, Manuel; Arlettaz, Raphaël; Jenni, Lukas

    2013-02-01

    Conservation of migratory wildlife requires knowledge of migratory connectivity between breeding and non-breeding locations. Stable isotopes in combination with geographical isotopic patterns (isoscapes) can provide inferences about migratory connectivity. This study examines whether such an approach can be used to infer wintering areas in sub-Saharan Africa, where we lack such knowledge for many species, but where this method has not been used widely. We measured δ (2)H, δ (13)C and δ (15)N in winter-grown feathers of a breeding Swiss and Spanish population of European hoopoe Upupa epops--a typical Palaearctic-Afrotropical migrant. δ (2)H values predicted that ~70 % of the hoopoes spent the non-breeding season in the western portion of their potential winter range. This was corroborated by a shallow east-west gradient in feather-δ (2)H values of museum specimens from known African origin across the potential winter range and by the recovery of Swiss hoopoes marked with geolocators. Hoopoes categorized as from eastern versus western regions of the wintering range were further delineated spatially using feather δ (13)C and δ (15)N. δ (15)N showed no trend, whereas adults were more enriched in (13)C in the western portion of the range, with eastern adults being in addition more depleted in (13)C than eastern juveniles. This suggests that eastern juveniles may have occupied more xeric habitats than sympatric adults. We demonstrated that stable isotopes, especially δ (2)H, could only very roughly delineate the winter distribution of a trans-Saharan Palaearctic migrant restricted primarily to the Sahelian and savanna belt south of the Sahara. Further refinements of precipitation isoscapes for Africa as well the development of isoscapes for δ (13)C and δ (15)N may improve assignment of this and other migrants.

  11. Conservation of protein abundance patterns reveals the regulatory architecture of the EGFR-MAPK pathway.

    PubMed

    Shi, Tujin; Niepel, Mario; McDermott, Jason E; Gao, Yuqian; Nicora, Carrie D; Chrisler, William B; Markillie, Lye M; Petyuk, Vladislav A; Smith, Richard D; Rodland, Karin D; Sorger, Peter K; Qian, Wei-Jun; Wiley, H Steven

    2016-07-12

    Various genetic mutations associated with cancer are known to alter cell signaling, but it is not clear whether they dysregulate signaling pathways by altering the abundance of pathway proteins. Using a combination of RNA sequencing and ultrasensitive targeted proteomics, we defined the primary components-16 core proteins and 10 feedback regulators-of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathway in normal human mammary epithelial cells and then quantified their absolute abundance across a panel of normal and breast cancer cell lines as well as fibroblasts. We found that core pathway proteins were present at very similar concentrations across all cell types, with a variance similar to that of proteins previously shown to display conserved abundances across species. In contrast, EGFR and transcriptionally controlled feedback regulators were present at highly variable concentrations. The absolute abundance of most core proteins was between 50,000 and 70,000 copies per cell, but the adaptors SOS1, SOS2, and GAB1 were found at far lower amounts (2000 to 5000 copies per cell). MAPK signaling showed saturation in all cells between 3000 and 10,000 occupied EGFRs, consistent with the idea that adaptors limit signaling. Our results suggest that the relative stoichiometry of core MAPK pathway proteins is very similar across different cell types, with cell-specific differences mostly restricted to variable amounts of feedback regulators and receptors. The low abundance of adaptors relative to EGFR could be responsible for previous observations that only a fraction of total cell surface EGFR is capable of rapid endocytosis, high-affinity binding, and mitogenic signaling.

  12. Pax3/7 genes reveal conservation and divergence in the arthropod segmentation hierarchy.

    PubMed

    Davis, Gregory K; D'Alessio, Joseph A; Patel, Nipam H

    2005-09-01

    Several features of Pax3/7 gene expression are shared among distantly related insects, including pair-rule, segment polarity, and neural patterns. Recent data from arachnids imply that roles in segmentation and neurogenesis are likely to be played by Pax3/7 genes in all arthropods. To further investigate Pax3/7 genes in non-insect arthropods, we isolated two monoclonal antibodies that recognize the products of Pax3/7 genes in a wide range of taxa, allowing us to quickly survey Pax3/7 expression in all four major arthropod groups. Epitope analysis reveals that these antibodies react to a small subset of Paired-class homeodomains, which includes the products of all known Pax3/7 genes. Using these antibodies, we find that Pax3/7 genes in crustaceans are expressed in an early broad and, in one case, dynamic domain followed by segmental stripes, while myriapods and chelicerates exhibit segmental stripes that form early in the posterior-most part of the germ band. This suggests that Pax3/7 genes acquired their role in segmentation deep within, or perhaps prior to, the arthropod lineage. However, we do not detect evidence of pair-rule patterning in either myriapods or chelicerates, suggesting that the early pair-rule expression pattern of Pax3/7 genes in insects may have been acquired within the crustacean-hexapod lineage.

  13. Transcriptomes of the parasitic plant family Orobanchaceae reveal surprising conservation of chlorophyll synthesis.

    PubMed

    Wickett, Norman J; Honaas, Loren A; Wafula, Eric K; Das, Malay; Huang, Kan; Wu, Biao; Landherr, Lena; Timko, Michael P; Yoder, John; Westwood, James H; dePamphilis, Claude W

    2011-12-20

    Parasitism in flowering plants has evolved at least 11 times [1]. Only one family, Orobanchaceae, comprises all major nutritional types of parasites: facultative, hemiparasitic (partially photosynthetic), and holoparasitic (nonphotosynthetic) [2]. Additionally, the family includes Lindenbergia, a nonparasitic genus sister to all parasitic Orobanchaceae [3-6]. Parasitic Orobanchaceae include species with severe economic impacts: Striga (witchweed), for example, affects over 50 million hectares of crops in sub-Saharan Africa, causing more than $3 billion in damage annually [7]. Although gene losses and increased substitution rates have been characterized for parasitic plant plastid genomes [5, 8-11], the nuclear genome and transcriptome remain largely unexplored. The Parasitic Plant Genome Project (PPGP; http://ppgp.huck.psu.edu/) [2] is leveraging the natural variation in Orobanchaceae to explore the evolution and genomic consequences of parasitism in plants through a massive transcriptome and gene discovery project involving Triphysaria versicolor (facultative hemiparasite), Striga hermonthica (obligate hemiparasite), and Phelipanche aegyptiaca (Orobanche [12]; holoparasite). Here we present the first set of large-scale genomic resources for parasitic plant comparative biology. Transcriptomes of above-ground tissues reveal that, in addition to the predictable loss of photosynthesis-related gene expression in P. aegyptiaca, the nonphotosynthetic parasite retains an intact, expressed, and selectively constrained chlorophyll synthesis pathway.

  14. A microsatellite linkage map of striped bass (Morone saxatilis) reveals conserved synteny with the three-spined stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus).

    PubMed

    Liu, Sixin; Rexroad, Caird E; Couch, Charlene R; Cordes, Jan F; Reece, Kimberly S; Sullivan, Craig V

    2012-04-01

    The striped bass (Morone saxatilis) and its relatives (genus Morone) are of great importance to fisheries and aquaculture in North America. As part of a collaborative effort to employ molecular genetics technologies in striped bass breeding programs, we previously developed nearly 500 microsatellite markers. The objectives of this study were to construct a microsatellite linkage map of striped bass and to examine conserved synteny between striped bass and three-spined stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus). Of 480 microsatellite markers screened for polymorphism, 289 informative markers were identified and used to genotype two half-sib mapping families. Twenty-six linkage groups were assembled, and only two markers remain unlinked. The sex-averaged map spans 1,623.8 cM with an average marker density of 5.78 cM per marker. Among 287 striped bass microsatellite markers assigned to linkage groups, 169 (58.9%) showed homology to sequences on stickleback chromosomes or scaffolds. Comparison between the stickleback genome and the striped bass linkage map revealed conserved synteny between these two species. This is the first linkage map for any of the Morone species. This map will be useful for molecular mapping and marker-assisted selection of genes of interest in striped bass breeding programs. The conserved synteny between striped bass and stickleback will facilitate fine mapping of genome regions of interest and will serve as a new resource for comparative mapping with other Perciform fishes such as European sea bass (Dicentrarchus labrax), gilthead sea bream (Sparus aurata), and tilapia (Oreochromis ssp.).

  15. Yeast gain-of-function mutations reveal structure–function relationships conserved among different subfamilies of transient receptor potential channels

    PubMed Central

    Su, Zhenwei; Zhou, Xinliang; Haynes, W. John; Loukin, Stephen H.; Anishkin, Andriy; Saimi, Yoshiro; Kung, Ching

    2007-01-01

    Transient receptor potential (TRP) channels found in animals, protists, and fungi are primary chemo-, thermo-, or mechanosensors. Current research emphasizes the characteristics of individual channels in each animal TRP subfamily but not the mechanisms common across subfamilies. A forward genetic screen of the TrpY1, the yeast TRP channel, recovered gain-of-function (GOF) mutations with phenotype in vivo and in vitro. Single-channel patch-clamp analyses of these GOF-mutant channels show prominent aberrations in open probability and channel kinetics. These mutations revealed functionally important aromatic amino acid residues in four locations: at the intracellular end of the fifth transmembrane helix (TM5), at both ends of TM6, and at the immediate extension of TM6. These aromatics have counterparts in most TRP subfamilies. The one in TM5 (F380L) aligns precisely with an exceptional Drosophila mutant allele (F550I) that causes constitutive activity in the canonical TRP channel, resulting in rapid and severe retinal degeneration beyond mere loss of phototaxis. Thus, this phenylalanine maintains the balance of various functional states (conformations) of a channel for insect phototransduction as well as one for fungal mechanotransduction. This residue is among a small cluster of phenylalanines found in all known subfamilies of TRP channels. This unique case illustrates that GOF mutations can reveal structure–function principles that can be generalized across different TRP subfamilies. It appears that the conserved aromatics in the four locations have conserved functions in most TRP channels. The possible mechanistic roles of these aromatics and the further use of yeast genetics to dissect TRP channels are discussed. PMID:18042709

  16. Identification and functional characterization of a new IL-1 family member, IL-1Fm2, in most evolutionarily advanced fish.

    PubMed

    Angosto, Diego; Montero, Jana; López-Muñoz, Azucena; Alcaraz-Pérez, Francisca; Bird, Steve; Sarropoulou, Elena; Abellán, Emilia; Meseguer, José; Sepulcre, María P; Mulero, Victoriano

    2014-07-01

    The IL-1 family consists of 11 members that play an important role as key mediators in inflammation and immunity. Here, we report the identification of a new member of the IL-1 family (IL-1Fm2) that is present in species belonging to the most evolutionarily advanced group of teleost fish (Series Percomorpha), including Perciformes, Beloniformes, Gasterosteiformes, Cyprinodontiformes and Pleuronectiformes. However, IL-1Fm2 seems to be absent in Tetraodontiformes, which also belong to the Percomorpha. The expression pattern of gilthead seabream IL-1Fm2 revealed that although it was hardly induced by PAMPs, the combination of PAMPs and recombinant IL-1Fm2 synergistically induced its expression in macrophages and granulocytes. In addition, recombinant IL-1Fm2 was able to activate the respiratory burst of seabream phagocytes and to synergistically induce the expression of IL-1β, TNF-α, IL-8 and IL-10 when combined with PAMPs. Finally, although gilthead seabream IL-1Fm2 did not show a conserved caspase-1 processing site, macrophages processed IL-1Fm2 before being released. However, both pan-caspase and caspase-1 inhibitors failed to inhibit the processing and release of IL-1Fm2. These results demonstrate an important role of IL-1Fm2 in the regulation of fish immune responses, shed light on the evolution of the IL-1 family in vertebrates and point to the complexity of this cytokine family.

  17. Conservative management of a congenital seminal vesicle cyst associated with ipsilateral renal agenesis revealed by cystitis: one case report.

    PubMed

    Ahallal, Youness; Tazi, Mohammed Fadl; Khallouk, Abdelhak; Elammari, Jalaleddine; Elfassi, Mohammed Jamal; Farih, Moulay Hassan

    2011-01-01

    Seminal vesicle cyst is an extremely rare disease. Its association with ipsilateral renal agenesis is even more exceptional. We present herein one case of a 16-year-old male who presented with a four-month history of lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTSs) and micturition pain. The digital rectal examination revealed a small mass arising from the prostate. The urine culture showed that E. coli is sensitive to all antibiotics tested. Transrectal ultrasound (TRUS) revealed a cystic mass in the outer prostate. Seminal vesicle cyst and left renal agenesis were confirmed by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Maximum flow (Q(max)) at uroflow was greater than 15 mL/sec. We therefore decided to manage this disease conservatively with alpha blockers and antibiotics. After 6-month' followup the patient did not report any complain and the uroflow test was similar to a normal urination. From one case report and literature review, the authors suggest a diagnostic and therapeutic strategy for the management of this rare condition.

  18. Conservative Management of a Congenital Seminal Vesicle Cyst Associated with Ipsilateral Renal Agenesis Revealed by Cystitis: One Case Report

    PubMed Central

    Ahallal, Youness; Tazi, Mohammed Fadl; Khallouk, Abdelhak; Elammari, Jalaleddine; Elfassi, Mohammed Jamal; Farih, Moulay Hassan

    2011-01-01

    Seminal vesicle cyst is an extremely rare disease. Its association with ipsilateral renal agenesis is even more exceptional. We present herein one case of a 16-year-old male who presented with a four-month history of lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTSs) and micturition pain. The digital rectal examination revealed a small mass arising from the prostate. The urine culture showed that E. coli is sensitive to all antibiotics tested. Transrectal ultrasound (TRUS) revealed a cystic mass in the outer prostate. Seminal vesicle cyst and left renal agenesis were confirmed by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Maximum flow (Qmax) at uroflow was greater than 15 mL/sec. We therefore decided to manage this disease conservatively with alpha blockers and antibiotics. After 6-month' followup the patient did not report any complain and the uroflow test was similar to a normal urination. From one case report and literature review, the authors suggest a diagnostic and therapeutic strategy for the management of this rare condition. PMID:22606606

  19. Comparative Genome Sequence Analysis Reveals the Extent of Diversity and Conservation for Glycan-Associated Proteins in Burkholderia spp.

    PubMed Central

    Ong, Hui San; Mohamed, Rahmah; Firdaus-Raih, Mohd

    2012-01-01

    Members of the Burkholderia family occupy diverse ecological niches. In pathogenic family members, glycan-associated proteins are often linked to functions that include virulence, protein conformation maintenance, surface recognition, cell adhesion, and immune system evasion. Comparative analysis of available Burkholderia genomes has revealed a core set of 178 glycan-associated proteins shared by all Burkholderia of which 68 are homologous to known essential genes. The genome sequence comparisons revealed insights into species-specific gene acquisitions through gene transfers, identified an S-layer protein, and proposed that significantly reactive surface proteins are associated to sugar moieties as a potential means to circumvent host defense mechanisms. The comparative analysis using a curated database of search queries enabled us to gain insights into the extent of conservation and diversity, as well as the possible virulence-associated roles of glycan-associated proteins in members of the Burkholderia spp. The curated list of glycan-associated proteins used can also be directed to screen other genomes for glycan-associated homologs. PMID:22991502

  20. Comparative genomic and functional analysis reveal conservation of plant growth promoting traits in Paenibacillus polymyxa and its closely related species

    PubMed Central

    Xie, Jianbo; Shi, Haowen; Du, Zhenglin; Wang, Tianshu; Liu, Xiaomeng; Chen, Sanfeng

    2016-01-01

    Paenibacillus polymyxa has widely been studied as a model of plant-growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR). Here, the genome sequences of 9 P. polymyxa strains, together with 26 other sequenced Paenibacillus spp., were comparatively studied. Phylogenetic analysis of the concatenated 244 single-copy core genes suggests that the 9 P. polymyxa strains and 5 other Paenibacillus spp., isolated from diverse geographic regions and ecological niches, formed a closely related clade (here it is called Poly-clade). Analysis of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) reveals local diversification of the 14 Poly-clade genomes. SNPs were not evenly distributed throughout the 14 genomes and the regions with high SNP density contain the genes related to secondary metabolism, including genes coding for polyketide. Recombination played an important role in the genetic diversity of this clade, although the rate of recombination was clearly lower than mutation. Some genes relevant to plant-growth promoting traits, i.e. phosphate solubilization and IAA production, are well conserved, while some genes relevant to nitrogen fixation and antibiotics synthesis are evolved with diversity in this Poly-clade. This study reveals that both P. polymyxa and its closely related species have plant growth promoting traits and they have great potential uses in agriculture and horticulture as PGPR. PMID:26856413

  1. Combined use of systematic conservation planning, species distribution modelling, and connectivity analysis reveals severe conservation gaps in a megadiverse country (Peru).

    PubMed

    Fajardo, Javier; Lessmann, Janeth; Bonaccorso, Elisa; Devenish, Christian; Muñoz, Jesús

    2014-01-01

    Conservation planning is crucial for megadiverse countries where biodiversity is coupled with incomplete reserve systems and limited resources to invest in conservation. Using Peru as an example of a megadiverse country, we asked whether the national system of protected areas satisfies biodiversity conservation needs. Further, to complement the existing reserve system, we identified and prioritized potential conservation areas using a combination of species distribution modeling, conservation planning and connectivity analysis. Based on a set of 2,869 species, including mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles, butterflies, and plants, we used species distribution models to represent species' geographic ranges to reduce the effect of biased sampling and partial knowledge about species' distributions. A site-selection algorithm then searched for efficient and complementary proposals, based on the above distributions, for a more representative system of protection. Finally, we incorporated connectivity among areas in an innovative post-hoc analysis to prioritize those areas maximizing connectivity within the system. Our results highlight severe conservation gaps in the Coastal and Andean regions, and we propose several areas, which are not currently covered by the existing network of protected areas. Our approach helps to find areas that contribute to creating a more representative, connected and efficient network.

  2. Combined Use of Systematic Conservation Planning, Species Distribution Modelling, and Connectivity Analysis Reveals Severe Conservation Gaps in a Megadiverse Country (Peru)

    PubMed Central

    Fajardo, Javier; Lessmann, Janeth; Bonaccorso, Elisa; Devenish, Christian; Muñoz, Jesús

    2014-01-01

    Conservation planning is crucial for megadiverse countries where biodiversity is coupled with incomplete reserve systems and limited resources to invest in conservation. Using Peru as an example of a megadiverse country, we asked whether the national system of protected areas satisfies biodiversity conservation needs. Further, to complement the existing reserve system, we identified and prioritized potential conservation areas using a combination of species distribution modeling, conservation planning and connectivity analysis. Based on a set of 2,869 species, including mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles, butterflies, and plants, we used species distribution models to represent species' geographic ranges to reduce the effect of biased sampling and partial knowledge about species' distributions. A site-selection algorithm then searched for efficient and complementary proposals, based on the above distributions, for a more representative system of protection. Finally, we incorporated connectivity among areas in an innovative post-hoc analysis to prioritize those areas maximizing connectivity within the system. Our results highlight severe conservation gaps in the Coastal and Andean regions, and we propose several areas, which are not currently covered by the existing network of protected areas. Our approach helps to find areas that contribute to creating a more representative, connected and efficient network. PMID:25479411

  3. Segment polarity gene expression in a myriapod reveals conserved and diverged aspects of early head patterning in arthropods.

    PubMed

    Janssen, Ralf

    2012-09-01

    Arthropods show two kinds of developmental mode. In the so-called long germ developmental mode (as exemplified by the fly Drosophila), all segments are formed almost simultaneously from a preexisting field of cells. In contrast, in the so-called short germ developmental mode (as exemplified by the vast majority of arthropods), only the anterior segments are patterned similarly as in Drosophila, and posterior segments are added in a single or double segmental periodicity from a posterior segment addition zone (SAZ). The addition of segments from the SAZ is controlled by dynamic waves of gene activity. Recent studies on a spider have revealed that a similar dynamic process, involving expression of the segment polarity gene (SPG) hedgehog (hh), is involved in the formation of the anterior head segments. The present study shows that in the myriapod Glomeris marginata the early expression of hh is also in a broad anterior domain, but this domain corresponds only to the ocular and antennal segment. It does not, like in spiders, represent expression in the posterior adjacent segment. In contrast, the anterior hh pattern is conserved in Glomeris and insects. All investigated myriapod SPGs and associated factors are expressed with delay in the premandibular (tritocerebral) segment. This delay is exclusively found in insects and myriapods, but not in chelicerates, crustaceans and onychophorans. Therefore, it may represent a synapomorphy uniting insects and myriapods (Atelocerata hypothesis), contradicting the leading opinion that suggests a sister relationship of crustaceans and insects (Pancrustacea hypothesis). In Glomeris embryos, the SPG engrailed is first expressed in the mandibular segment. This feature is conserved in representatives of all arthropod classes suggesting that the mandibular segment may have a special function in anterior patterning.

  4. Conserved oligomeric Golgi complex subunit 1 deficiency reveals a previously uncharacterized congenital disorder of glycosylation type II

    PubMed Central

    Foulquier, François; Vasile, Eliza; Schollen, Els; Callewaert, Nico; Raemaekers, Tim; Quelhas, Dulce; Jaeken, Jaak; Mills, Philippa; Winchester, Bryan; Krieger, Monty; Annaert, Wim; Matthijs, Gert

    2006-01-01

    The conserved oligomeric Golgi (COG) complex is a heterooctameric complex that regulates intraGolgi trafficking and the integrity of the Golgi compartment in eukaryotic cells. Here, we describe a patient with a mild form of congenital disorder of glycosylation type II (CDG-II) that is caused by a deficiency in the Cog1 subunit of the complex. This patient has a defect in both N- and O-glycosylation. Mass spectrometric analysis of the structures of the N-linked glycans released from glycoproteins from the patient's serum revealed a reduction in sialic acid and galactose residues. Peanut agglutinin (PNA) lectin staining revealed a decrease in sialic acids on core 1 mucin type O-glycans, indicating a combined defect in N- and O-glycosylation. Sequence analysis of the COG1 cDNA and gene identified a homozygous insertion of a single nucleotide (2659–2660insC), which is predicted to lead to a premature translation stop and truncation of the C terminus of the Cog1 protein by 80 amino acids. This mutation destabilizes several other COG subunits and alters their subcellular localization and hence the overall integrity of the COG complex. This results in reduced levels and/or altered Golgi localization of α-mannosidase II and β-1,4 galactosyltransferase I, which links it to the glycosylation deficiency. Transfection of primary fibroblasts of this patient with the full length hemagglutinin-tagged Cog1 indeed restored β-1,4 galactosyltransferase Golgi localization. We propose naming this disorder CDG-II/Cog1, or CDG-II caused by Cog1 deficiency. PMID:16537452

  5. Characterisation of worldwide Helicobacter pylori strains reveals genetic conservation and essentiality of serine protease HtrA.

    PubMed

    Tegtmeyer, Nicole; Moodley, Yoshan; Yamaoka, Yoshio; Pernitzsch, Sandy Ramona; Schmidt, Vanessa; Traverso, Francisco Rivas; Schmidt, Thomas P; Rad, Roland; Yeoh, Khay Guan; Bow, Ho; Torres, Javier; Gerhard, Markus; Schneider, Gisbert; Wessler, Silja; Backert, Steffen

    2016-03-01

    HtrA proteases and chaperones exhibit important roles in periplasmic protein quality control and stress responses. The genetic inactivation of htrA has been described for many bacterial pathogens. However, in some cases such as the gastric pathogen Helicobacter pylori, HtrA is secreted where it cleaves the tumour-suppressor E-cadherin interfering with gastric disease development, but the generation of htrA mutants is still lacking. Here, we show that the htrA gene locus is highly conserved in worldwide strains. HtrA presence was confirmed in 992 H. pylori isolates in gastric biopsy material from infected patients. Differential RNA-sequencing (dRNA-seq) indicated that htrA is encoded in an operon with two subsequent genes, HP1020 and HP1021. Genetic mutagenesis and complementation studies revealed that HP1020 and HP1021, but not htrA, can be mutated. In addition, we demonstrate that suppression of HtrA proteolytic activity with a newly developed inhibitor is sufficient to effectively kill H. pylori, but not other bacteria. We show that Helicobacter htrA is an essential bifunctional gene with crucial intracellular and extracellular functions. Thus, we describe here the first microbe in which htrA is an indispensable gene, a situation unique in the bacterial kingdom. HtrA can therefore be considered a promising new target for anti-bacterial therapy.

  6. Characterisation of worldwide Helicobacter pylori strains reveals genetic conservation and essentiality of serine protease HtrA

    PubMed Central

    Tegtmeyer, Nicole; Moodley, Yoshan; Yamaoka, Yoshio; Pernitzsch, Sandy Ramona; Schmidt, Vanessa; Traverso, Francisco Rivas; Schmidt, Thomas P.; Rad, Roland; Yeoh, Khay Guan; Bow, Ho; Torres, Javier; Gerhard, Markus; Schneider, Gisbert; Wessler, Silja

    2015-01-01

    Summary HtrA proteases and chaperones exhibit important roles in periplasmic protein quality control and stress responses. The genetic inactivation of htrA has been described for many bacterial pathogens. However, in some cases such as the gastric pathogen H elicobacter pylori, HtrA is secreted where it cleaves the tumour‐suppressor E‐cadherin interfering with gastric disease development, but the generation of htrA mutants is still lacking. Here, we show that the htrA gene locus is highly conserved in worldwide strains. HtrA presence was confirmed in 992 H . pylori isolates in gastric biopsy material from infected patients. Differential RNA‐sequencing (dRNA‐seq) indicated that htrA is encoded in an operon with two subsequent genes, HP1020 and HP1021. Genetic mutagenesis and complementation studies revealed that HP1020 and HP1021, but not htrA, can be mutated. In addition, we demonstrate that suppression of HtrA proteolytic activity with a newly developed inhibitor is sufficient to effectively kill H . pylori, but not other bacteria. We show that H elicobacter  htrA is an essential bifunctional gene with crucial intracellular and extracellular functions. Thus, we describe here the first microbe in which htrA is an indispensable gene, a situation unique in the bacterial kingdom. HtrA can therefore be considered a promising new target for anti‐bacterial therapy. PMID:26568477

  7. Transcriptomic Analysis of Tail Regeneration in the Lizard Anolis carolinensis Reveals Activation of Conserved Vertebrate Developmental and Repair Mechanisms

    PubMed Central

    Hutchins, Elizabeth D.; Markov, Glenn J.; Eckalbar, Walter L.; George, Rajani M.; King, Jesse M.; Tokuyama, Minami A.; Geiger, Lauren A.; Emmert, Nataliya; Ammar, Michael J.; Allen, April N.; Siniard, Ashley L.; Corneveaux, Jason J.; Fisher, Rebecca E.; Wade, Juli; DeNardo, Dale F.; Rawls, J. Alan; Huentelman, Matthew J.; Wilson-Rawls, Jeanne; Kusumi, Kenro

    2014-01-01

    Lizards, which are amniote vertebrates like humans, are able to lose and regenerate a functional tail. Understanding the molecular basis of this process would advance regenerative approaches in amniotes, including humans. We have carried out the first transcriptomic analysis of tail regeneration in a lizard, the green anole Anolis carolinensis, which revealed 326 differentially expressed genes activating multiple developmental and repair mechanisms. Specifically, genes involved in wound response, hormonal regulation, musculoskeletal development, and the Wnt and MAPK/FGF pathways were differentially expressed along the regenerating tail axis. Furthermore, we identified 2 microRNA precursor families, 22 unclassified non-coding RNAs, and 3 novel protein-coding genes significantly enriched in the regenerating tail. However, high levels of progenitor/stem cell markers were not observed in any region of the regenerating tail. Furthermore, we observed multiple tissue-type specific clusters of proliferating cells along the regenerating tail, not localized to the tail tip. These findings predict a different mechanism of regeneration in the lizard than the blastema model described in the salamander and the zebrafish, which are anamniote vertebrates. Thus, lizard tail regrowth involves the activation of conserved developmental and wound response pathways, which are potential targets for regenerative medical therapies. PMID:25140675

  8. Transcriptomic analysis of tail regeneration in the lizard Anolis carolinensis reveals activation of conserved vertebrate developmental and repair mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Hutchins, Elizabeth D; Markov, Glenn J; Eckalbar, Walter L; George, Rajani M; King, Jesse M; Tokuyama, Minami A; Geiger, Lauren A; Emmert, Nataliya; Ammar, Michael J; Allen, April N; Siniard, Ashley L; Corneveaux, Jason J; Fisher, Rebecca E; Wade, Juli; DeNardo, Dale F; Rawls, J Alan; Huentelman, Matthew J; Wilson-Rawls, Jeanne; Kusumi, Kenro

    2014-01-01

    Lizards, which are amniote vertebrates like humans, are able to lose and regenerate a functional tail. Understanding the molecular basis of this process would advance regenerative approaches in amniotes, including humans. We have carried out the first transcriptomic analysis of tail regeneration in a lizard, the green anole Anolis carolinensis, which revealed 326 differentially expressed genes activating multiple developmental and repair mechanisms. Specifically, genes involved in wound response, hormonal regulation, musculoskeletal development, and the Wnt and MAPK/FGF pathways were differentially expressed along the regenerating tail axis. Furthermore, we identified 2 microRNA precursor families, 22 unclassified non-coding RNAs, and 3 novel protein-coding genes significantly enriched in the regenerating tail. However, high levels of progenitor/stem cell markers were not observed in any region of the regenerating tail. Furthermore, we observed multiple tissue-type specific clusters of proliferating cells along the regenerating tail, not localized to the tail tip. These findings predict a different mechanism of regeneration in the lizard than the blastema model described in the salamander and the zebrafish, which are anamniote vertebrates. Thus, lizard tail regrowth involves the activation of conserved developmental and wound response pathways, which are potential targets for regenerative medical therapies.

  9. Structure of human cGAS reveals a conserved family of second-messenger enzymes in innate immunity.

    PubMed

    Kranzusch, Philip J; Lee, Amy Si-Ying; Berger, James M; Doudna, Jennifer A

    2013-05-30

    Innate immune recognition of foreign nucleic acids induces protective interferon responses. Detection of cytosolic DNA triggers downstream immune signaling through activation of cyclic GMP-AMP synthase (cGAS). We report here the crystal structure of human cGAS, revealing an unanticipated zinc-ribbon DNA-binding domain appended to a core enzymatic nucleotidyltransferase scaffold. The catalytic core of cGAS is structurally homologous to the RNA-sensing enzyme, 2'-5' oligo-adenylate synthase (OAS), and divergent C-terminal domains account for specific ligand-activation requirements of each enzyme. We show that the cGAS zinc ribbon is essential for STING-dependent induction of the interferon response and that conserved amino acids displayed within the intervening loops are required for efficient cytosolic DNA recognition. These results demonstrate that cGAS and OAS define a family of innate immunity sensors and that structural divergence from a core nucleotidyltransferase enables second-messenger responses to distinct foreign nucleic acids.

  10. Transcriptomes of Eight Arabidopsis thaliana Accessions Reveal Core Conserved, Genotype- and Organ-Specific Responses to Flooding Stress.

    PubMed

    van Veen, Hans; Vashisht, Divya; Akman, Melis; Girke, Thomas; Mustroph, Angelika; Reinen, Emilie; Hartman, Sjon; Kooiker, Maarten; van Tienderen, Peter; Schranz, M Eric; Bailey-Serres, Julia; Voesenek, Laurentius A C J; Sasidharan, Rashmi

    2016-10-01

    Climate change has increased the frequency and severity of flooding events, with significant negative impact on agricultural productivity. These events often submerge plant aerial organs and roots, limiting growth and survival due to a severe reduction in light reactions and gas exchange necessary for photosynthesis and respiration, respectively. To distinguish molecular responses to the compound stress imposed by submergence, we investigated transcriptomic adjustments to darkness in air and under submerged conditions using eight Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) accessions differing significantly in sensitivity to submergence. Evaluation of root and rosette transcriptomes revealed an early transcriptional and posttranscriptional response signature that was conserved primarily across genotypes, although flooding susceptibility-associated and genotype-specific responses also were uncovered. Posttranscriptional regulation encompassed darkness- and submergence-induced alternative splicing of transcripts from pathways involved in the alternative mobilization of energy reserves. The organ-specific transcriptome adjustments reflected the distinct physiological status of roots and shoots. Root-specific transcriptome changes included marked up-regulation of chloroplast-encoded photosynthesis and redox-related genes, whereas those of the rosette were related to the regulation of development and growth processes. We identified a novel set of tolerance genes, recognized mainly by quantitative differences. These included a transcriptome signature of more pronounced gluconeogenesis in tolerant accessions, a response that included stress-induced alternative splicing. This study provides organ-specific molecular resolution of genetic variation in submergence responses involving interactions between darkness and low-oxygen constraints of flooding stress and demonstrates that early transcriptome plasticity, including alternative splicing, is associated with the ability to cope

  11. Crystal structures of glutaminyl cyclases (QCs) from Drosophila melanogaster reveal active site conservation between insect and mammalian QCs.

    PubMed

    Koch, Birgit; Kolenko, Petr; Buchholz, Mirko; Carrillo, David Ruiz; Parthier, Christoph; Wermann, Michael; Rahfeld, Jens-Ulrich; Reuter, Gunter; Schilling, Stephan; Stubbs, Milton T; Demuth, Hans-Ulrich

    2012-09-18

    Glutaminyl cyclases (QCs), which catalyze the formation of pyroglutamic acid (pGlu) at the N-terminus of a variety of peptides and proteins, have attracted particular attention for their potential role in Alzheimer's disease. In a transgenic Drosophila melanogaster (Dm) fruit fly model, oral application of the potent competitive QC inhibitor PBD150 was shown to reduce the burden of pGlu-modified Aβ. In contrast to mammals such as humans and rodents, there are at least three DmQC species, one of which (isoDromeQC) is localized to mitochondria, whereas DromeQC and an isoDromeQC splice variant possess signal peptides for secretion. Here we present the recombinant expression, characterization, and crystal structure determination of mature DromeQC and isoDromeQC, revealing an overall fold similar to that of mammalian QCs. In the case of isoDromeQC, the putative extended substrate binding site might be affected by the proximity of the N-terminal residues. PBD150 inhibition of DromeQC is roughly 1 order of magnitude weaker than that of the human and murine QCs. The inhibitor binds to isoDromeQC in a fashion similar to that observed for human QCs, whereas it adopts alternative binding modes in a DromeQC variant lacking the conserved cysteines near the active center and shows a disordered dimethoxyphenyl moiety in wild-type DromeQC, providing an explanation for the lower affinity. Our biophysical and structural data suggest that isoDromeQC and human QC are similar with regard to functional aspects. The two Dm enzymes represent a suitable model for further in-depth analysis of the catalytic mechanism of animal QCs, and isoDromeQC might serve as a model system for the structure-based design of potential AD therapeutics.

  12. Transcriptomes of Eight Arabidopsis thaliana Accessions Reveal Core Conserved, Genotype- and Organ-Specific Responses to Flooding Stress1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    van Veen, Hans; Vashisht, Divya; Akman, Melis; Girke, Thomas; Mustroph, Angelika; Reinen, Emilie; Kooiker, Maarten; van Tienderen, Peter; Voesenek, Laurentius A.C.J.

    2016-01-01

    Climate change has increased the frequency and severity of flooding events, with significant negative impact on agricultural productivity. These events often submerge plant aerial organs and roots, limiting growth and survival due to a severe reduction in light reactions and gas exchange necessary for photosynthesis and respiration, respectively. To distinguish molecular responses to the compound stress imposed by submergence, we investigated transcriptomic adjustments to darkness in air and under submerged conditions using eight Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) accessions differing significantly in sensitivity to submergence. Evaluation of root and rosette transcriptomes revealed an early transcriptional and posttranscriptional response signature that was conserved primarily across genotypes, although flooding susceptibility-associated and genotype-specific responses also were uncovered. Posttranscriptional regulation encompassed darkness- and submergence-induced alternative splicing of transcripts from pathways involved in the alternative mobilization of energy reserves. The organ-specific transcriptome adjustments reflected the distinct physiological status of roots and shoots. Root-specific transcriptome changes included marked up-regulation of chloroplast-encoded photosynthesis and redox-related genes, whereas those of the rosette were related to the regulation of development and growth processes. We identified a novel set of tolerance genes, recognized mainly by quantitative differences. These included a transcriptome signature of more pronounced gluconeogenesis in tolerant accessions, a response that included stress-induced alternative splicing. This study provides organ-specific molecular resolution of genetic variation in submergence responses involving interactions between darkness and low-oxygen constraints of flooding stress and demonstrates that early transcriptome plasticity, including alternative splicing, is associated with the ability to cope

  13. Sea urchin collagen evolutionarily homologous to vertebrate pro-alpha 2(I) collagen.

    PubMed

    Exposito, J Y; D'Alessio, M; Solursh, M; Ramirez, F

    1992-08-05

    We isolated several overlapping cDNA clones covering the 4242 nucleotides of a Strongylocentrotus purpuratus transcript that codes for a fibrillar procollagen chain. The sea urchin polypeptide includes a 124-amino acid long amino pre-propeptide, a 1064-amino acid alpha-chain inclusive of 338 uninterrupted Gly-X-Y repeats, and a 226-residue carboxyl-propeptide. The distribution of the highly conserved cysteines within the last domain together with the structural configuration of the amino-propeptide and the organization of the corresponding coding region, strongly suggest that the sea urchin gene is evolutionarily related to the vertebrate pro-alpha 2(I) collagen. This work, therefore, represents the first report of the complete primary structure of an invertebrate fibrillar procollagen chain. It also provides a new insight into the evolution of the amino-propeptide, the most divergent among the major protein domains of fibrillar procollagen chains.

  14. A conserved structural motif reveals the essential transcriptional repression function of Spen proteins and their role in developmental signaling.

    PubMed

    Ariyoshi, Mariko; Schwabe, John W R

    2003-08-01

    Spen proteins regulate the expression of key transcriptional effectors in diverse signaling pathways. They are large proteins characterized by N-terminal RNA-binding motifs and a highly conserved C-terminal SPOC domain. The specific biological role of the SPOC domain (Spen paralog and ortholog C-terminal domain), and hence, the common function of Spen proteins, has been unclear to date. The Spen protein, SHARP (SMRT/HDAC1-associated repressor protein), was identified as a component of transcriptional repression complexes in both nuclear receptor and Notch/RBP-Jkappa signaling pathways. We have determined the 1.8 A crystal structure of the SPOC domain from SHARP. This structure shows that essentially all of the conserved surface residues map to a positively charged patch. Structure-based mutational analysis indicates that this conserved region is responsible for the interaction between SHARP and the universal transcriptional corepressor SMRT/NCoR (silencing mediator for retinoid and thyroid receptors/nuclear receptor corepressor. We demonstrate that this interaction involves a highly conserved acidic motif at the C terminus of SMRT/NCoR. These findings suggest that the conserved function of the SPOC domain is to mediate interaction with SMRT/NCoR corepressors, and that Spen proteins play an essential role in the repression complex.

  15. lolal Is an Evolutionarily New Epigenetic Regulator of dpp Transcription during Dorsal–Ventral Axis Formation

    PubMed Central

    Quijano, Janine C.; Wisotzkey, Robert G.; Tran, Nancy Lan; Huang, Yunxian; Stinchfield, Michael J.; Haerry, Theodor E.; Shimmi, Osamu; Newfeld, Stuart J.

    2016-01-01

    Secreted ligands in the Dpp/BMP family drive dorsal–ventral (D/V) axis formation in all Bilaterian species. However, maternal factors regulating Dpp/BMP transcription in this process are largely unknown. We identified the BTB domain protein longitudinals lacking-like (lolal) as a modifier of decapentaplegic (dpp) mutations. We show that Lolal is evolutionarily related to the Trithorax group of chromatin regulators and that lolal interacts genetically with the epigenetic factor Trithorax-like during Dpp D/V signaling. Maternally driven LolalHA is found in oocytes and translocates to zygotic nuclei prior to the point at which dpp transcription begins. lolal maternal and zygotic mutant embryos display significant reductions in dpp, pMad, and zerknullt expression, but they are never absent. The data suggest that lolal is required to maintain dpp transcription during D/V patterning. Phylogenetic data revealed that lolal is an evolutionarily new gene present only in insects and crustaceans. We conclude that Lolal is the first maternal protein identified with a role in dpp D/V transcriptional maintenance, that Lolal and the epigenetic protein Trithorax-like are essential for Dpp D/V signaling and that the architecture of the Dpp D/V pathway evolved in the arthropod lineage after the separation from vertebrates via the incorporation of new genes such as lolal. PMID:27401231

  16. Structural insights into conserved L-arabinose metabolic enzymes reveal the substrate binding site of a thermophilic L-arabinose isomerase.

    PubMed

    Lee, Yong-Jik; Lee, Sang-Jae; Kim, Seong-Bo; Lee, Sang Jun; Lee, Sung Haeng; Lee, Dong-Woo

    2014-03-18

    Structural genomics demonstrates that despite low levels of structural similarity of proteins comprising a metabolic pathway, their substrate binding regions are likely to be conserved. Herein based on the 3D-structures of the α/β-fold proteins involved in the ara operon, we attempted to predict the substrate binding residues of thermophilic Geobacillus stearothermophilus L-arabinose isomerase (GSAI) with no 3D-structure available. Comparison of the structures of L-arabinose catabolic enzymes revealed a conserved feature to form the substrate-binding modules, which can be extended to predict the substrate binding site of GSAI (i.e., D195, E261 and E333). Moreover, these data implicated that proteins in the l-arabinose metabolic pathway might retain their substrate binding niches as the modular structure through conserved molecular evolution even with totally different structural scaffolds.

  17. A tri-component conservation strategy reveals highly confident microRNA-mRNA interactions and evolution of microRNA regulatory networks.

    PubMed

    Lin, Chen-Ching; Mitra, Ramkrishna; Zhao, Zhongming

    2014-01-01

    MicroRNAs are small non-coding RNAs that can regulate expressions of their target genes at the post-transcriptional level. In this study, we propose a tri-component strategy that combines the conservation of microRNAs, homology of mRNA coding regions, and conserved microRNA binding sites in the 3' untranslated regions to discover conserved microRNA-mRNA interactions. To validate the performance of our conservation strategy, we collected the experimentally validated microRNA-mRNA interactions from three databases as the golden standard. We found that the proposed strategy can improve the performance of existing target prediction algorithms by approximately 2-4 fold. In addition, we demonstrated that the proposed strategy could efficiently retain highly confident interactions from the intersection results of the existing algorithms and filter out the possible false positive predictions in the union one. Furthermore, this strategy can facilitate our ability to trace the homologues in different species that are targeted by the same miRNA family because it combines these three features to identify the conserved miRNA-mRNA interactions during evolution. Through an extensive application of the proposed conservation strategy to a study of the miR-1/206 regulatory network, we demonstrate that the target mRNA recruiting process could be associated with expansion of miRNA family during its evolution. We also uncovered the functional evolution of the miR-1/206 regulatory network. In this network, the early targeted genes tend to participate in more general and development-related functions. In summary, the conservation strategy is capable of helping to highlight the highly confident miRNA-mRNA interactions and can be further applied to reveal the evolutionary features of miRNA regulatory network and functions.

  18. Evolutionarily stable range limits set by interspecific competition.

    PubMed

    Price, Trevor D; Kirkpatrick, Mark

    2009-04-22

    A combination of abiotic and biotic factors probably restricts the range of many species. Recent evolutionary models and tests of those models have asked how a gradual change in environmental conditions can set the range limit, with a prominent idea being that gene flow disrupts local adaptation. We investigate how biotic factors, explicitly competition for limited resources, result in evolutionarily stable range limits even in the absence of the disruptive effect of gene flow. We model two competing species occupying different segments of the resource spectrum. If one segment of the resource spectrum declines across space, a species that specializes on that segment can be driven to extinction, even though in the absence of competition it would evolve to exploit other abundant resources and so be saved. The result is that a species range limit is set in both evolutionary and ecological time, as the resources associated with its niche decline. Factors promoting this outcome include: (i) inherent gaps in the resource distribution, (ii) relatively high fitness of the species when in its own niche, and low fitness in the alternative niche, even when resource abundances are similar in each niche, (iii) strong interspecific competition, and (iv) asymmetric interspecific competition. We suggest that these features are likely to be common in multispecies communities, thereby setting evolutionarily stable range limits.

  19. Zoo-fluorescence in situ hybridization analysis of human and Indian muntjac karyotypes (Muntiacus muntjak vaginalis) reveals satellite DNA clusters at the margins of conserved syntenic segments.

    PubMed

    Frönicke, L; Scherthan, H

    1997-06-01

    Zoo-fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) with human whole chromosome-specific paint probes revealed extensive homoeologies between Indian muntjac (2n=6, 7 female, male) and human karyotypes (2n=46). Forty-two conserved syntenic segments, corresponding to all human chromosomes except the Y chromosome, produced a near-complete coverage of the muntjac complement and revealed margins of interspecific segmental homoeology. To test the hypothesis that interstitial satellite DNA loci, illuminated by a Chinese muntjac C5-satellite probe in Indian muntjac chromosome arms, mark ancestral fusion points (Lin CC, Sasi R, Fan YS, Chen Z-Q (1991) New evidence for tandem chromosome fusions in the karyotypic evolution of the Asian muntjacs. Chromosoma 101: 19-24), we combined Zoo-FISH with C5 satellite mapping. Twenty-six interstitial satellite DNA loci were detected in the haploid Indian muntjac genome and were found to co-localize with the margins of conserved human/Indian muntjac syntenic segments. These results were confirmed by two-colour FISH and are in accordance with the tandem fusion hypothesis for Indian muntjac chromosomes. Furthermore, conserved syntenic segment combinations detected in pig, cattle and Indian muntjac Zoo-FISH maps reveal ancestral artiodactyl chromosomes.

  20. Conservation of arthropod midline netrin accumulation revealed with a cross-reactive antibody provides evidence for midline cell homology

    PubMed Central

    Simanton, Wendy; Clark, Stephanie; Clemons, Anthony; Jacowski, Caitlin; Farrell-VanZomeren, Adrienne; Beach, Paul; Browne, William E.; Duman-Scheel, Molly

    2009-01-01

    SUMMARY Although many similarities in arthropod CNS development exist, differences in axonogenesis and the formation of midline cells, which regulate axon growth, have been observed. For example, axon growth patterns in the ventral nerve cord of Artemia franciscana differ from that of Drosophila melanogaster. Despite such differences, conserved molecular marker expression at the midline of several arthropod species indicates that midline cells may be homologous in distantly related arthropods. However, data from additional species are needed to test this hypothesis. In this investigation, nerve cord formation and the putative homology of midline cells were examined in distantly related arthropods, including: long- and short-germ insects (D. melanogaster, Aedes aeygypti, and Tribolium castaneum), branchiopod crustaceans (A. franciscana and Triops longicauditus), and malacostracan crustaceans (Porcellio laevis and Parhyale hawaiensis). These comparative analyses were aided by a cross-reactive antibody generated against the Netrin (Net) protein, a midline cell marker and regulator of axonogenesis. The mechanism of nerve cord formation observed in Artemia is found in Triops, another branchiopod, but is not found in the other arthropods examined. Despite divergent mechanisms of midline cell formation and nerve cord development, Net accumulation is detected in a well-conserved subset of midline cells in branchiopod crustaceans, malacostracan crustaceans, and insects. Notably, the Net accumulation pattern is also conserved at the midline of the amphipod P. hawaiensis, which undergoes split germ-band development. Conserved Net accumulation patterns indicate that arthropod midline cells are homologous, and that Nets function to regulate commissure formation during CNS development of Tetraconata. PMID:19469853

  1. Mutational Studies on Resurrected Ancestral Proteins Reveal Conservation of Site-Specific Amino Acid Preferences throughout Evolutionary History

    PubMed Central

    Risso, Valeria A.; Manssour-Triedo, Fadia; Delgado-Delgado, Asunción; Arco, Rocio; Barroso-delJesus, Alicia; Ingles-Prieto, Alvaro; Godoy-Ruiz, Raquel; Gavira, Jose A.; Gaucher, Eric A.; Ibarra-Molero, Beatriz; Sanchez-Ruiz, Jose M.

    2015-01-01

    Local protein interactions (“molecular context” effects) dictate amino acid replacements and can be described in terms of site-specific, energetic preferences for any different amino acid. It has been recently debated whether these preferences remain approximately constant during evolution or whether, due to coevolution of sites, they change strongly. Such research highlights an unresolved and fundamental issue with far-reaching implications for phylogenetic analysis and molecular evolution modeling. Here, we take advantage of the recent availability of phenotypically supported laboratory resurrections of Precambrian thioredoxins and β-lactamases to experimentally address the change of site-specific amino acid preferences over long geological timescales. Extensive mutational analyses support the notion that evolutionary adjustment to a new amino acid may occur, but to a large extent this is insufficient to erase the primitive preference for amino acid replacements. Generally, site-specific amino acid preferences appear to remain conserved throughout evolutionary history despite local sequence divergence. We show such preference conservation to be readily understandable in molecular terms and we provide crystallographic evidence for an intriguing structural-switch mechanism: Energetic preference for an ancestral amino acid in a modern protein can be linked to reorganization upon mutation to the ancestral local structure around the mutated site. Finally, we point out that site-specific preference conservation naturally leads to one plausible evolutionary explanation for the existence of intragenic global suppressor mutations. PMID:25392342

  2. Primary structure of the merozoite surface antigen 1 of Plasmodium vivax reveals sequences conserved between different Plasmodium species.

    PubMed Central

    del Portillo, H A; Longacre, S; Khouri, E; David, P H

    1991-01-01

    Merozoite surface antigen 1 (MSA1) of several species of plasmodia has been shown to be a promising candidate for a vaccine directed against the asexual blood stages of malaria. We report the cloning and characterization of the MSA1 gene of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium vivax. This gene, which we call Pv200, encodes a polypeptide of 1726 amino acids and displays features described for MSA1 genes of other species, such as signal peptide and anchoring sequences, conserved cysteine residues, number of potential N-glycosylation sites, and repeats consisting here of 23 glutamine residues in a row. When the nucleotide and deduced amino acid sequences of the MSA1 of P. vivax are compared to those of another human malaria parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, and to those of the rodent parasite Plasmodium yoelii, 10 regions of high amino acid similarity are observed despite the very different dG + dC contents of the corresponding genes. All of the interspecies conserved regions reside within the conserved or semiconserved blocks delimited by the sequences of different alleles of the MSA1 gene of P. falciparum. Images PMID:2023952

  3. Functional characterization of GmBZL2 (AtBZR1 like gene) reveals the conserved BR signaling regulation in Glycine max

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yu; Zhang, Yan-Jie; Yang, Bao-Jun; Yu, Xian-Xian; Wang, Dun; Zu, Song-Hao; Xue, Hong-Wei; Lin, Wen-Hui

    2016-01-01

    Brassinosteroids (BRs) play key roles in plant growth and development, and regulate various agricultural traits. Enhanced BR signaling leads to increased seed number and yield in Arabidopsis bzr1-1D (AtBZR1P234L, gain-of-function mutant of the important transcription factor in BR signaling/effects). BR signal transduction pathway is well elucidated in Arabidopsis but less known in other species. Soybean is an important dicot crop producing edible oil and protein. Phylogenetic analysis reveals AtBZR1-like genes are highly conserved in angiosperm and there are 4 orthologues in soybean (GmBZL1-4). We here report the functional characterization of GmBZL2 (relatively highly expresses in flowers). The P234 site in AtBZR1 is conserved in GmBZL2 (P216) and mutation of GmBZL2P216L leads to GmBZL2 accumulation. GmBZL2P216L (GmBZL2*) in Arabidopsis results in enhanced BR signaling; including increased seed number per silique. GmBZL2* partially rescued the defects of bri1-5, further demonstrating the conserved function of GmBZL2 with AtBZR1. BR treatment promotes the accumulation, nuclear localization and dephosphorylation/phosphorylation ratio of GmBZL2, revealing that GmBZL2 activity is regulated conservatively by BR signaling. Our studies not only indicate the conserved regulatory mechanism of GmBZL2 and BR signaling pathway in soybean, but also suggest the potential application of GmBZL2 in soybean seed yield. PMID:27498784

  4. A Global Trend towards the Loss of Evolutionarily Unique Species in Mangrove Ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Mankga, Ledile T.; Davies, T. Jonathan

    2013-01-01

    The mangrove biome stands out as a distinct forest type at the interface between terrestrial, estuarine, and near-shore marine ecosystems. However, mangrove species are increasingly threatened and experiencing range contraction across the globe that requires urgent conservation action. Here, we assess the spatial distribution of mangrove species richness and evolutionary diversity, and evaluate potential predictors of global declines and risk of extinction. We found that human pressure, measured as the number of different uses associated with mangroves, correlated strongly, but negatively, with extinction probability, whereas species ages were the best predictor of global decline, explaining 15% of variation in extinction risk. Although the majority of mangrove species are categorised by the IUCN as Least Concern, our finding that the more threatened species also tend to be those that are more evolutionarily unique is of concern because their extinction would result in a greater loss of phylogenetic diversity. Finally, we identified biogeographic regions that are relatively species-poor but rich in evolutionary history, and suggest these regions deserve greater conservation priority. Our study provides phylogenetic information that is important for developing a unified management plan for mangrove ecosystems worldwide. PMID:23805263

  5. NAD kinase controls animal NADP biosynthesis and is modulated via evolutionarily divergent calmodulin-dependent mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Love, Nick R; Pollak, Nadine; Dölle, Christian; Niere, Marc; Chen, Yaoyao; Oliveri, Paola; Amaya, Enrique; Patel, Sandip; Ziegler, Mathias

    2015-02-03

    Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NADP) is a critical cofactor during metabolism, calcium signaling, and oxidative defense, yet how animals regulate their NADP pools in vivo and how NADP-synthesizing enzymes are regulated have long remained unknown. Here we show that expression of Nadk, an NAD(+) kinase-encoding gene, governs NADP biosynthesis in vivo and is essential for development in Xenopus frog embryos. Unexpectedly, we found that embryonic Nadk expression is dynamic, showing cell type-specific up-regulation during both frog and sea urchin embryogenesis. We analyzed the NAD kinases (NADKs) of a variety of deuterostome animals, finding two conserved internal domains forming a catalytic core but a highly divergent N terminus. One type of N terminus (found in basal species such as the sea urchin) mediates direct catalytic activation of NADK by Ca(2+)/calmodulin (CaM), whereas the other (typical for vertebrates) is phosphorylated by a CaM kinase-dependent mechanism. This work indicates that animal NADKs govern NADP biosynthesis in vivo and are regulated by evolutionarily divergent and conserved CaM-dependent mechanisms.

  6. Conservation and diversification of Msx protein in metazoan evolution.

    PubMed

    Takahashi, Hirokazu; Kamiya, Akiko; Ishiguro, Akira; Suzuki, Atsushi C; Saitou, Naruya; Toyoda, Atsushi; Aruga, Jun

    2008-01-01

    Msx (/msh) family genes encode homeodomain (HD) proteins that control ontogeny in many animal species. We compared the structures of Msx genes from a wide range of Metazoa (Porifera, Cnidaria, Nematoda, Arthropoda, Tardigrada, Platyhelminthes, Mollusca, Brachiopoda, Annelida, Echiura, Echinodermata, Hemichordata, and Chordata) to gain an understanding of the role of these genes in phylogeny. Exon-intron boundary analysis suggested that the position of the intron located N-terminally to the HDs was widely conserved in all the genes examined, including those of cnidarians. Amino acid (aa) sequence comparison revealed 3 new evolutionarily conserved domains, as well as very strong conservation of the HDs. Two of the three domains were associated with Groucho-like protein binding in both a vertebrate and a cnidarian Msx homolog, suggesting that the interaction between Groucho-like proteins and Msx proteins was established in eumetazoan ancestors. Pairwise comparison among the collected HDs and their C-flanking aa sequences revealed that the degree of sequence conservation varied depending on the animal taxa from which the sequences were derived. Highly conserved Msx genes were identified in the Vertebrata, Cephalochordata, Hemichordata, Echinodermata, Mollusca, Brachiopoda, and Anthozoa. The wide distribution of the conserved sequences in the animal phylogenetic tree suggested that metazoan ancestors had already acquired a set of conserved domains of the current Msx family genes. Interestingly, although strongly conserved sequences were recovered from the Vertebrata, Cephalochordata, and Anthozoa, the sequences from the Urochordata and Hydrozoa showed weak conservation. Because the Vertebrata-Cephalochordata-Urochordata and Anthozoa-Hydrozoa represent sister groups in the Chordata and Cnidaria, respectively, Msx sequence diversification may have occurred differentially in the course of evolution. We speculate that selective loss of the conserved domains in Msx family

  7. Perfect reciprocity is the only evolutionarily stable strategy in the continuous iterated prisoner's dilemma.

    PubMed

    André, Jean-Baptiste; Day, Troy

    2007-07-07

    Theoretical studies have shown that cooperation tends to evolve when interacting individuals have positively correlated phenotypes. In the present article, we explore the situation where this correlation results from information exchange between social partners, and behavioral flexibility. We consider the game 'continuous iterated prisoner's dilemma'. The level of cooperation expressed by individuals in this game, together with their ability to respond to one another, both evolve as two aspects of their behavioral strategy. The conditions for a strategy to be evolutionarily stable in this game are degenerate, and earlier works were thus unable to find a single ESS. However, a detailed invasion analysis, together with the study of evolution in finite populations, reveals that natural selection favors strategies whereby individuals respond to their opponent's actions in a perfectly mirrored (i.e., correlated) fashion. As a corollary, the overall payoff of social interactions (i.e., the amount of cooperation) is maximized because couples of correlated partners effectively become the units of selection.

  8. Minimal promoter systems reveal the importance of conserved residues in the B-finger of human transcription factor IIB.

    PubMed

    Thompson, Nancy E; Glaser, Bryan T; Foley, Katherine M; Burton, Zachary F; Burgess, Richard R

    2009-09-11

    The "B-finger" of transcription factor IIB (TFIIB) is highly conserved and believed to play a role in the initiation process. We performed alanine substitutions across the B-finger of human TFIIB, made change-of-charge mutations in selected residues, and substituted the B-finger sequence from other organisms. Mutant proteins were examined in two minimal promoter systems (containing only RNA polymerase II, TATA-binding protein, and TFIIB) and in a complex system, using TFIIB-immunodepleted HeLa cell nuclear extract (NE). Mutations in conserved residues located on the sides of the B-finger had the greatest effect on activity in both minimal promoter systems, with mutations in residues Glu-51 and Arg-66 eliminating activity. The double change-of-charge mutant (E51R:R66E) did not show activity in either minimal promoter system. Mutations in the nonconserved residues at the tip of the B-finger did not significantly affect activity. However, all of the mutations in the B-finger showed at least 25% activity in the HeLa cell NE. Chimeric proteins, containing B-finger sequences from species with conserved residues on the side of the B-finger, showed wild-type activity in a minimal promoter system and in the HeLa cell NE. However, chimeric proteins whose sequence showed divergence on the sides of the B-finger had reduced activity. Transcription factor IIF (TFIIF) partially restored activity of the inactive mutants in the minimal promoter system, suggesting that TFIIF in HeLa cell NE helps to rescue the inactive mutations by interacting with either the B-finger or another component of the initiation complex that is influenced by the B-finger.

  9. Comparative Analysis of Pistil Transcriptomes Reveals Conserved and Novel Genes Expressed in Dry, Wet, and Semidry Stigmas1[W

    PubMed Central

    Allen, Alexandra M.; Lexer, Christian; Hiscock, Simon J.

    2010-01-01

    Fertilization in angiosperms depends on a complex cellular “courtship” between haploid pollen and diploid pistil. These pollen-pistil interactions are regulated by a diversity of molecules, many of which remain to be identified and characterized. Thus, it is unclear to what extent these processes are conserved among angiosperms, a fact confounded by limited sampling across taxa. Here, we report the analysis of pistil-expressed genes in Senecio squalidus (Asteraceae), a species from euasterid II, a major clade for which there are currently no data on pistil-expressed genes. Species from the Asteraceae characteristically have a “semidry stigma,” intermediate between the “wet” and “dry” stigmas typical of the majority of angiosperms. Construction of pistil-enriched cDNA libraries for S. squalidus allowed us to address two hypotheses: (1) stigmas of S. squalidus will express genes common to wet and dry stigmas and genes specific to the semidry stigma characteristic of the Asteraceae; and (2) genes potentially essential for pistil function will be conserved between diverse angiosperm groups and therefore common to all currently available pistil transcriptome data sets, including S. squalidus. Our data support both these hypotheses. The S. squalidus pistil transcriptome contains novel genes and genes previously identified in pistils of species with dry stigmas and wet stigmas. Comparative analysis of the five pistil transcriptomes currently available (Oryza sativa, Crocus sativus, Arabidopsis thaliana, Nicotiana tabacum, and S. squalidus), representing four major angiosperm clades and the three stigma states, identified novel genes and conserved genes potentially regulating pollen-pistil interaction pathways common to monocots and eudicots. PMID:20813907

  10. Comparative phosphoproteomic analysis of mammalian glomeruli reveals conserved podocin C-terminal phosphorylation as a determinant of slit diaphragm complex architecture.

    PubMed

    Rinschen, Markus M; Pahmeyer, Caroline; Pisitkun, Trairak; Schnell, Nicole; Wu, Xiongwu; Maaß, Martina; Bartram, Malte P; Lamkemeyer, Tobias; Schermer, Bernhard; Benzing, Thomas; Brinkkoetter, Paul T

    2015-04-01

    Glomerular biology is dependent on tightly controlled signal transduction networks that control phosphorylation of signaling proteins such as cytoskeletal regulators or slit diaphragm proteins of kidney podocytes. Cross-species comparison of phosphorylation events is a powerful mean to functionally prioritize and identify physiologically meaningful phosphorylation sites. Here, we present the result of phosphoproteomic analyses of cow and rat glomeruli to allow cross-species comparisons. We discovered several phosphorylation sites with potentially high biological relevance, e.g. tyrosine phosphorylation of the cytoskeletal regulator synaptopodin and the slit diaphragm protein neph-1 (Kirrel). Moreover, cross-species comparisons revealed conserved phosphorylation of the slit diaphragm protein nephrin on an acidic cluster at the intracellular terminus and conserved podocin phosphorylation on the very carboxyl terminus of the protein. We studied a highly conserved podocin phosphorylation site in greater detail and show that phosphorylation regulates affinity of the interaction with nephrin and CD2AP. Taken together, these results suggest that species comparisons of phosphoproteomic data may reveal regulatory principles in glomerular biology. All MS data have been deposited in the ProteomeXchange with identifier PXD001005 (http://proteomecentral.proteomexchange.org/dataset/PXD001005).

  11. Aberrant splicing in maize rough endosperm3 reveals a conserved role for U12 splicing in eukaryotic multicellular development

    PubMed Central

    Barbazuk, W. Brad

    2017-01-01

    RNA splicing of U12-type introns functions in human cell differentiation, but it is not known whether this class of introns has a similar role in plants. The maize ROUGH ENDOSPERM3 (RGH3) protein is orthologous to the human splicing factor, ZRSR2. ZRSR2 mutations are associated with myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) and cause U12 splicing defects. Maize rgh3 mutants have aberrant endosperm cell differentiation and proliferation. We found that most U12-type introns are retained or misspliced in rgh3. Genes affected in rgh3 and ZRSR2 mutants identify cell cycle and protein glycosylation as common pathways disrupted. Transcripts with retained U12-type introns can be found in polysomes, suggesting that splicing efficiency can alter protein isoforms. The rgh3 mutant protein disrupts colocalization with a known ZRSR2-interacting protein, U2AF2. These results indicate conserved function for RGH3/ZRSR2 in U12 splicing and a deeply conserved role for the minor spliceosome to promote cell differentiation from stem cells to terminal fates. PMID:28242684

  12. Genomic analysis of the Pacific oyster (Crassostrea gigas) reveals possible conservation of vertebrate sex determination in a mollusc.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Na; Xu, Fei; Guo, Ximing

    2014-09-11

    Despite the prevalence of sex in animal kingdom, we have only limited understanding of how sex is determined and evolved in many taxa. The mollusc Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas exhibits complex modes of sexual reproduction that consists of protandric dioecy, sex change, and occasional hermaphroditism. This complex system is controlled by both environmental and genetic factors through unknown molecular mechanisms. In this study, we investigated genes related to sex-determining pathways in C. gigas through transcriptome sequencing and analysis of female and male gonads. Our analysis identified or confirmed novel homologs in the oyster of key sex-determining genes (SoxH or Sry-like and FoxL2) that were thought to be vertebrate-specific. Their expression profile in C. gigas is consistent with conserved roles in sex determination, under a proposed model where a novel testis-determining CgSoxH may serve as a primary regulator, directly or indirectly interacting with a testis-promoting CgDsx and an ovary-promoting CgFoxL2. Our findings plus previous results suggest that key vertebrate sex-determining genes such as Sry and FoxL2 may not be inventions of vertebrates. The presence of such genes in a mollusc with expression profiles consistent with expected roles in sex determination suggest that sex determination may be deeply conserved in animals, despite rapid evolution of the regulatory pathways that in C. gigas may involve both genetic and environmental factors.

  13. A spectacular new Philippine monitor lizard reveals a hidden biogeographic boundary and a novel flagship species for conservation

    PubMed Central

    Welton, Luke J.; Siler, Cameron D.; Bennett, Daniel; Diesmos, Arvin; Duya, M. Roy; Dugay, Roldan; Rico, Edmund Leo B.; Van Weerd, Merlijn; Brown, Rafe M.

    2010-01-01

    As humans continue to explore the last uncharted regions of the planet, discoveries of previously unknown species of large vertebrates have become infrequent. Here, we report on the discovery of a spectacular new species of giant, secretive, frugivorous, forest monitor lizard (Genus: Varanus) from the forests of the northern Philippines. Using data from morphology and mitochondrial and nuclear DNA sequences, we demonstrate the taxonomic distinctiveness of this new 2 m long species and provide insight into its historical biogeography and systematic affinities. Our molecular phylogenetic analyses indicate that the new species is closely related to Varanus olivaceus (from southern Luzon and nearby islands), but it differs from this and other varanids with respect to characteristics of scalation, colour pattern, body size, anatomy of the reproductive organs and genetic divergence. The new species appears to be restricted to forests of the central and northern Sierra Madre mountain range; it is separated from the range of V. olivaceus by a more than 150 km stretch that includes at least three low-elevation river valley barriers to dispersal. This discovery identifies a seldom-perceived biogeographic boundary and emphasizes the need for continued biodiversity research in the megadiverse conservation hotspot of the Philippines. It is anticipated that the new species will serve as an important flagship species for conservation efforts aimed at preserving the remaining forests of northern Luzon. PMID:20375042

  14. Genetic variation in the Solanaceae fruit bearing species lulo and tree tomato revealed by Conserved Ortholog (COSII) markers.

    PubMed

    Enciso-Rodríguez, Felix; Martínez, Rodrigo; Lobo, Mario; Barrero, Luz Stella

    2010-04-01

    The Lulo or naranjilla (Solanum quitoense Lam.) and the tree tomato or tamarillo (Solanum betaceum Cav. Sendt.) are both Andean tropical fruit species with high nutritional value and the potential for becoming premium products in local and export markets. Herein, we present a report on the genetic characterization of 62 accessions of lulos (n = 32) and tree tomatoes (n = 30) through the use of PCR-based markers developed from single-copy conserved orthologous genes (COSII) in other Solanaceae (Asterid) species. We successfully PCR amplified a set of these markers for lulos (34 out of 46 initially tested) and tree tomatoes (26 out of 41) for molecular studies. Six polymorphic COSII markers were found in lulo with a total of 47 alleles and five polymorphic markers in tree tomato with a total of 39 alleles in the two populations. Further genetic analyses indicated a high population structure (with F(ST) > 0.90), which may be a result of low migration between populations, adaptation to various niches and the number of markers evaluated. We propose COSII markers as sound tools for molecular studies, conservation and the breeding of these two fruit species.

  15. Human antibodies reveal a protective epitope that is highly conserved among human and nonhuman influenza A viruses.

    PubMed

    Grandea, Andres G; Olsen, Ole A; Cox, Thomas C; Renshaw, Mark; Hammond, Philip W; Chan-Hui, Po-Ying; Mitcham, Jennifer L; Cieplak, Witold; Stewart, Shaun M; Grantham, Michael L; Pekosz, Andrew; Kiso, Maki; Shinya, Kyoko; Hatta, Masato; Kawaoka, Yoshihiro; Moyle, Matthew

    2010-07-13

    Influenza remains a serious public health threat throughout the world. Vaccines and antivirals are available that can provide protection from infection. However, new viral strains emerge continuously because of the plasticity of the influenza genome, which necessitates annual reformulation of vaccine antigens, and resistance to antivirals can appear rapidly and become entrenched in circulating virus populations. In addition, the spread of new pandemic strains is difficult to contain because of the time required to engineer and manufacture effective vaccines. Monoclonal antibodies that target highly conserved viral epitopes might offer an alternative protection paradigm. Herein we describe the isolation of a panel of monoclonal antibodies derived from the IgG(+) memory B cells of healthy, human subjects that recognize a previously unknown conformational epitope within the ectodomain of the influenza matrix 2 protein, M2e. This antibody binding region is highly conserved in influenza A viruses, being present in nearly all strains detected to date, including highly pathogenic viruses that infect primarily birds and swine, and the current 2009 swine-origin H1N1 pandemic strain (S-OIV). Furthermore, these human anti-M2e monoclonal antibodies protect mice from lethal challenges with either H5N1 or H1N1 influenza viruses. These results suggest that viral M2e can elicit broadly cross-reactive and protective antibodies in humans. Accordingly, recombinant forms of these human antibodies may provide useful therapeutic agents to protect against infection from a broad spectrum of influenza A strains.

  16. Genomic Analysis of the Pacific Oyster (Crassostrea gigas) Reveals Possible Conservation of Vertebrate Sex Determination in a Mollusc

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Na; Xu, Fei; Guo, Ximing

    2014-01-01

    Despite the prevalence of sex in animal kingdom, we have only limited understanding of how sex is determined and evolved in many taxa. The mollusc Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas exhibits complex modes of sexual reproduction that consists of protandric dioecy, sex change, and occasional hermaphroditism. This complex system is controlled by both environmental and genetic factors through unknown molecular mechanisms. In this study, we investigated genes related to sex-determining pathways in C. gigas through transcriptome sequencing and analysis of female and male gonads. Our analysis identified or confirmed novel homologs in the oyster of key sex-determining genes (SoxH or Sry-like and FoxL2) that were thought to be vertebrate-specific. Their expression profile in C. gigas is consistent with conserved roles in sex determination, under a proposed model where a novel testis-determining CgSoxH may serve as a primary regulator, directly or indirectly interacting with a testis-promoting CgDsx and an ovary-promoting CgFoxL2. Our findings plus previous results suggest that key vertebrate sex-determining genes such as Sry and FoxL2 may not be inventions of vertebrates. The presence of such genes in a mollusc with expression profiles consistent with expected roles in sex determination suggest that sex determination may be deeply conserved in animals, despite rapid evolution of the regulatory pathways that in C. gigas may involve both genetic and environmental factors. PMID:25213692

  17. Genetic variation in the Solanaceae fruit bearing species lulo and tree tomato revealed by Conserved Ortholog (COSII) markers

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    The Lulo or naranjilla (Solanum quitoense Lam.) and the tree tomato or tamarillo (Solanum betaceum Cav. Sendt.) are both Andean tropical fruit species with high nutritional value and the potential for becoming premium products in local and export markets. Herein, we present a report on the genetic characterization of 62 accessions of lulos (n = 32) and tree tomatoes (n = 30) through the use of PCR-based markers developed from single-copy conserved orthologous genes (COSII) in other Solanaceae (Asterid) species. We successfully PCR amplified a set of these markers for lulos (34 out of 46 initially tested) and tree tomatoes (26 out of 41) for molecular studies. Six polymorphic COSII markers were found in lulo with a total of 47 alleles and five polymorphic markers in tree tomato with a total of 39 alleles in the two populations. Further genetic analyses indicated a high population structure (with FST > 0.90), which may be a result of low migration between populations, adaptation to various niches and the number of markers evaluated. We propose COSII markers as sound tools for molecular studies, conservation and the breeding of these two fruit species. PMID:21637482

  18. The complete mitochondrial genome sequence of the liverwort Pleurozia purpurea reveals extremely conservative mitochondrial genome evolution in liverworts.

    PubMed

    Wang, Bin; Xue, Jiayu; Li, Libo; Liu, Yang; Qiu, Yin-Long

    2009-12-01

    Plant mitochondrial genomes have been known to be highly unusual in their large sizes, frequent intra-genomic rearrangement, and generally conservative sequence evolution. Recent studies show that in early land plants the mitochondrial genomes exhibit a mixed mode of conservative yet dynamic evolution. Here, we report the completely sequenced mitochondrial genome from the liverwort Pleurozia purpurea. The circular genome has a size of 168,526 base pairs, containing 43 protein-coding genes, 3 rRNA genes, 25 tRNA genes, and 31 group I or II introns. It differs from the Marchantia polymorpha mitochondrial genome, the only other liverwort chondriome that has been sequenced, in lacking two genes (trnRucg and trnTggu) and one intron (rrn18i1065gII). The two genomes have identical gene orders and highly similar sequences in exons, introns, and intergenic spacers. Finally, a comparative analysis of duplicated trnRucu and other trnR genes from the two liverworts and several other organisms identified the recent lateral origin of trnRucg in Marchantia mtDNA through modification of a duplicated trnRucu. This study shows that the mitochondrial genomes evolve extremely slowly in liverworts, the earliest-diverging lineage of extant land plants, in stark contrast to what is known of highly dynamic evolution of mitochondrial genomes in seed plants.

  19. Molecular and genetic analyses of the silky1 gene reveal conservation in floral organ specification between eudicots and monocots.

    PubMed

    Ambrose, B A; Lerner, D R; Ciceri, P; Padilla, C M; Yanofsky, M F; Schmidt, R J

    2000-03-01

    The degree to which the eudicot-based ABC model of flower organ identity applies to the other major subclass of angrosperms, the monocots, has yet to be fully explored. We cloned silky1 (si1), a male sterile mutant of Zea mays that has homeotic conversions of stamens into carpels and lodicules into palea/lemma-like structures. Our studies indicate that si1 is a monocot B function MADS box gene. Moreover, the si1 zag1 double mutant produces a striking spikelet phenotype where normal glumes enclose reiterated palea/lemma-like organs. These studies indicate that B function gene activity is conserved among monocots as well as eudicots. In addition, they provide compelling developmental evidence for recognizing lodicules as modified petals and, possibly, palea and lemma as modified sepals.

  20. Genome-Wide Gene Expression Profiling Reveals Conserved and Novel Molecular Functions of the Stigma in Rice1[W

    PubMed Central

    Li, Meina; Xu, Wenying; Yang, Wenqiang; Kong, Zhaosheng; Xue, Yongbiao

    2007-01-01

    In angiosperms, the stigma provides initial nutrients and guidance cues for pollen grain germination and tube growth. However, little is known about the genes that regulate these processes in rice (Oryza sativa). Here, we generate rice stigma-specific or -preferential gene expression profiles through comparing genome-wide expression patterns of hand-dissected, unpollinated stigma at anthesis with seven tissues, including seedling shoot, seedling root, mature anther, ovary at anthesis, seeds 5 d after pollination, 10-d-old embryo, 10-d-old endosperm, and suspension-cultured cells by using both 57 K Affymetrix rice whole-genome array and 10 K rice cDNA microarray. A high reproducibility of the microarray results was detected between the two different technology platforms. In total, we identified 548 genes to be expressed specifically or predominantly in the stigma papillar cells of rice. Real-time quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction analysis of 34 selected genes all confirmed their stigma-specific expression. The expression of five selected genes was further validated by RNA in situ hybridization. Gene Ontology analysis shows that several auxin-signaling components, transcription, and stress-related genes are significantly overrepresented in the rice stigma gene set. Interestingly, most of them also share several cis-regulatory elements with known stress-responsive genes, supporting the notion of an overlap of genetic programs regulating pollination and stress/defense responses. We also found that genes involved in cell wall metabolism and cellular communication appear to be conserved in the stigma between rice and Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana). Our results indicate that the stigmas appear to have conserved and novel molecular functions between rice and Arabidopsis. PMID:17556504

  1. The First Myriapod Genome Sequence Reveals Conservative Arthropod Gene Content and Genome Organisation in the Centipede Strigamia maritima

    PubMed Central

    Chipman, Ariel D.; Ferrier, David E. K.; Brena, Carlo; Qu, Jiaxin; Hughes, Daniel S. T.; Schröder, Reinhard; Torres-Oliva, Montserrat; Znassi, Nadia; Jiang, Huaiyang; Almeida, Francisca C.; Alonso, Claudio R.; Apostolou, Zivkos; Aqrawi, Peshtewani; Arthur, Wallace; Barna, Jennifer C. J.; Blankenburg, Kerstin P.; Brites, Daniela; Capella-Gutiérrez, Salvador; Coyle, Marcus; Dearden, Peter K.; Du Pasquier, Louis; Duncan, Elizabeth J.; Ebert, Dieter; Eibner, Cornelius; Erikson, Galina; Evans, Peter D.; Extavour, Cassandra G.; Francisco, Liezl; Gabaldón, Toni; Gillis, William J.; Goodwin-Horn, Elizabeth A.; Green, Jack E.; Griffiths-Jones, Sam; Grimmelikhuijzen, Cornelis J. P.; Gubbala, Sai; Guigó, Roderic; Han, Yi; Hauser, Frank; Havlak, Paul; Hayden, Luke; Helbing, Sophie; Holder, Michael; Hui, Jerome H. L.; Hunn, Julia P.; Hunnekuhl, Vera S.; Jackson, LaRonda; Javaid, Mehwish; Jhangiani, Shalini N.; Jiggins, Francis M.; Jones, Tamsin E.; Kaiser, Tobias S.; Kalra, Divya; Kenny, Nathan J.; Korchina, Viktoriya; Kovar, Christie L.; Kraus, F. Bernhard; Lapraz, François; Lee, Sandra L.; Lv, Jie; Mandapat, Christigale; Manning, Gerard; Mariotti, Marco; Mata, Robert; Mathew, Tittu; Neumann, Tobias; Newsham, Irene; Ngo, Dinh N.; Ninova, Maria; Okwuonu, Geoffrey; Ongeri, Fiona; Palmer, William J.; Patil, Shobha; Patraquim, Pedro; Pham, Christopher; Pu, Ling-Ling; Putman, Nicholas H.; Rabouille, Catherine; Ramos, Olivia Mendivil; Rhodes, Adelaide C.; Robertson, Helen E.; Robertson, Hugh M.; Ronshaugen, Matthew; Rozas, Julio; Saada, Nehad; Sánchez-Gracia, Alejandro; Scherer, Steven E.; Schurko, Andrew M.; Siggens, Kenneth W.; Simmons, DeNard; Stief, Anna; Stolle, Eckart; Telford, Maximilian J.; Tessmar-Raible, Kristin; Thornton, Rebecca; van der Zee, Maurijn; von Haeseler, Arndt; Williams, James M.; Willis, Judith H.; Wu, Yuanqing; Zou, Xiaoyan; Lawson, Daniel; Muzny, Donna M.; Worley, Kim C.; Gibbs, Richard A.; Akam, Michael; Richards, Stephen

    2014-01-01

    Myriapods (e.g., centipedes and millipedes) display a simple homonomous body plan relative to other arthropods. All members of the class are terrestrial, but they attained terrestriality independently of insects. Myriapoda is the only arthropod class not represented by a sequenced genome. We present an analysis of the genome of the centipede Strigamia maritima. It retains a compact genome that has undergone less gene loss and shuffling than previously sequenced arthropods, and many orthologues of genes conserved from the bilaterian ancestor that have been lost in insects. Our analysis locates many genes in conserved macro-synteny contexts, and many small-scale examples of gene clustering. We describe several examples where S. maritima shows different solutions from insects to similar problems. The insect olfactory receptor gene family is absent from S. maritima, and olfaction in air is likely effected by expansion of other receptor gene families. For some genes S. maritima has evolved paralogues to generate coding sequence diversity, where insects use alternate splicing. This is most striking for the Dscam gene, which in Drosophila generates more than 100,000 alternate splice forms, but in S. maritima is encoded by over 100 paralogues. We see an intriguing linkage between the absence of any known photosensory proteins in a blind organism and the additional absence of canonical circadian clock genes. The phylogenetic position of myriapods allows us to identify where in arthropod phylogeny several particular molecular mechanisms and traits emerged. For example, we conclude that juvenile hormone signalling evolved with the emergence of the exoskeleton in the arthropods and that RR-1 containing cuticle proteins evolved in the lineage leading to Mandibulata. We also identify when various gene expansions and losses occurred. The genome of S. maritima offers us a unique glimpse into the ancestral arthropod genome, while also displaying many adaptations to its specific

  2. Spatial Dynamics and Expanded Vertical Niche of Blue Sharks in Oceanographic Fronts Reveal Habitat Targets for Conservation

    PubMed Central

    Queiroz, Nuno; Humphries, Nicolas E.; Noble, Leslie R.; Santos, António M.; Sims, David W.

    2012-01-01

    Dramatic population declines among species of pelagic shark as a result of overfishing have been reported, with some species now at a fraction of their historical biomass. Advanced telemetry techniques enable tracking of spatial dynamics and behaviour, providing fundamental information on habitat preferences of threatened species to aid conservation. We tracked movements of the highest pelagic fisheries by-catch species, the blue shark Prionace glauca, in the North-east Atlantic using pop-off satellite-linked archival tags to determine the degree of space use linked to habitat and to examine vertical niche. Overall, blue sharks moved south-west of tagging sites (English Channel; southern Portugal), exhibiting pronounced site fidelity correlated with localized productive frontal areas, with estimated space-use patterns being significantly different from that of random walks. Tracked female sharks displayed behavioural variability in diel depth preferences, both within and between individuals. Diel depth use ranged from normal DVM (nDVM; dawn descent, dusk ascent), to reverse DVM (rDVM; dawn ascent, dusk descent), to behavioural patterns where no diel differences were apparent. Results showed that blue sharks occupy some of the most productive marine zones for extended periods and structure diel activity patterns across multiple spatio-temporal scales in response to particular habitat types. In so doing, sharks occupied an extraordinarily broad vertical depth range for their size (1.0–2.0 m fork length), from the surface into the bathypelagic realm (max. dive depth, 1160 m). The space-use patterns of blue sharks indicated they spend much of the time in areas where pelagic longlining activities are often highest, and in depth zones where these fisheries particularly target other species, which could account for the rapid declines recently reported for blue sharks in many parts of the world's oceans. Our results provide habitat targets for blue shark conservation

  3. Spatial dynamics and expanded vertical niche of blue sharks in oceanographic fronts reveal habitat targets for conservation.

    PubMed

    Queiroz, Nuno; Humphries, Nicolas E; Noble, Leslie R; Santos, António M; Sims, David W

    2012-01-01

    Dramatic population declines among species of pelagic shark as a result of overfishing have been reported, with some species now at a fraction of their historical biomass. Advanced telemetry techniques enable tracking of spatial dynamics and behaviour, providing fundamental information on habitat preferences of threatened species to aid conservation. We tracked movements of the highest pelagic fisheries by-catch species, the blue shark Prionace glauca, in the North-east Atlantic using pop-off satellite-linked archival tags to determine the degree of space use linked to habitat and to examine vertical niche. Overall, blue sharks moved south-west of tagging sites (English Channel; southern Portugal), exhibiting pronounced site fidelity correlated with localized productive frontal areas, with estimated space-use patterns being significantly different from that of random walks. Tracked female sharks displayed behavioural variability in diel depth preferences, both within and between individuals. Diel depth use ranged from normal DVM (nDVM; dawn descent, dusk ascent), to reverse DVM (rDVM; dawn ascent, dusk descent), to behavioural patterns where no diel differences were apparent. Results showed that blue sharks occupy some of the most productive marine zones for extended periods and structure diel activity patterns across multiple spatio-temporal scales in response to particular habitat types. In so doing, sharks occupied an extraordinarily broad vertical depth range for their size (1.0-2.0 m fork length), from the surface into the bathypelagic realm (max. dive depth, 1160 m). The space-use patterns of blue sharks indicated they spend much of the time in areas where pelagic longlining activities are often highest, and in depth zones where these fisheries particularly target other species, which could account for the rapid declines recently reported for blue sharks in many parts of the world's oceans. Our results provide habitat targets for blue shark conservation that

  4. The first myriapod genome sequence reveals conservative arthropod gene content and genome organisation in the centipede Strigamia maritima.

    PubMed

    Chipman, Ariel D; Ferrier, David E K; Brena, Carlo; Qu, Jiaxin; Hughes, Daniel S T; Schröder, Reinhard; Torres-Oliva, Montserrat; Znassi, Nadia; Jiang, Huaiyang; Almeida, Francisca C; Alonso, Claudio R; Apostolou, Zivkos; Aqrawi, Peshtewani; Arthur, Wallace; Barna, Jennifer C J; Blankenburg, Kerstin P; Brites, Daniela; Capella-Gutiérrez, Salvador; Coyle, Marcus; Dearden, Peter K; Du Pasquier, Louis; Duncan, Elizabeth J; Ebert, Dieter; Eibner, Cornelius; Erikson, Galina; Evans, Peter D; Extavour, Cassandra G; Francisco, Liezl; Gabaldón, Toni; Gillis, William J; Goodwin-Horn, Elizabeth A; Green, Jack E; Griffiths-Jones, Sam; Grimmelikhuijzen, Cornelis J P; Gubbala, Sai; Guigó, Roderic; Han, Yi; Hauser, Frank; Havlak, Paul; Hayden, Luke; Helbing, Sophie; Holder, Michael; Hui, Jerome H L; Hunn, Julia P; Hunnekuhl, Vera S; Jackson, LaRonda; Javaid, Mehwish; Jhangiani, Shalini N; Jiggins, Francis M; Jones, Tamsin E; Kaiser, Tobias S; Kalra, Divya; Kenny, Nathan J; Korchina, Viktoriya; Kovar, Christie L; Kraus, F Bernhard; Lapraz, François; Lee, Sandra L; Lv, Jie; Mandapat, Christigale; Manning, Gerard; Mariotti, Marco; Mata, Robert; Mathew, Tittu; Neumann, Tobias; Newsham, Irene; Ngo, Dinh N; Ninova, Maria; Okwuonu, Geoffrey; Ongeri, Fiona; Palmer, William J; Patil, Shobha; Patraquim, Pedro; Pham, Christopher; Pu, Ling-Ling; Putman, Nicholas H; Rabouille, Catherine; Ramos, Olivia Mendivil; Rhodes, Adelaide C; Robertson, Helen E; Robertson, Hugh M; Ronshaugen, Matthew; Rozas, Julio; Saada, Nehad; Sánchez-Gracia, Alejandro; Scherer, Steven E; Schurko, Andrew M; Siggens, Kenneth W; Simmons, DeNard; Stief, Anna; Stolle, Eckart; Telford, Maximilian J; Tessmar-Raible, Kristin; Thornton, Rebecca; van der Zee, Maurijn; von Haeseler, Arndt; Williams, James M; Willis, Judith H; Wu, Yuanqing; Zou, Xiaoyan; Lawson, Daniel; Muzny, Donna M; Worley, Kim C; Gibbs, Richard A; Akam, Michael; Richards, Stephen

    2014-11-01

    Myriapods (e.g., centipedes and millipedes) display a simple homonomous body plan relative to other arthropods. All members of the class are terrestrial, but they attained terrestriality independently of insects. Myriapoda is the only arthropod class not represented by a sequenced genome. We present an analysis of the genome of the centipede Strigamia maritima. It retains a compact genome that has undergone less gene loss and shuffling than previously sequenced arthropods, and many orthologues of genes conserved from the bilaterian ancestor that have been lost in insects. Our analysis locates many genes in conserved macro-synteny contexts, and many small-scale examples of gene clustering. We describe several examples where S. maritima shows different solutions from insects to similar problems. The insect olfactory receptor gene family is absent from S. maritima, and olfaction in air is likely effected by expansion of other receptor gene families. For some genes S. maritima has evolved paralogues to generate coding sequence diversity, where insects use alternate splicing. This is most striking for the Dscam gene, which in Drosophila generates more than 100,000 alternate splice forms, but in S. maritima is encoded by over 100 paralogues. We see an intriguing linkage between the absence of any known photosensory proteins in a blind organism and the additional absence of canonical circadian clock genes. The phylogenetic position of myriapods allows us to identify where in arthropod phylogeny several particular molecular mechanisms and traits emerged. For example, we conclude that juvenile hormone signalling evolved with the emergence of the exoskeleton in the arthropods and that RR-1 containing cuticle proteins evolved in the lineage leading to Mandibulata. We also identify when various gene expansions and losses occurred. The genome of S. maritima offers us a unique glimpse into the ancestral arthropod genome, while also displaying many adaptations to its specific

  5. Conserved synteny at the protein family level reveals genes underlying Shewanella species cold tolerance and predicts their novel phenotypes

    SciTech Connect

    Karpinets, Tatiana V.; Obraztsova, Anna; Wang, Yanbing; Schmoyer, Denise D.; Kora, Guruprasad; Park, Byung H.; Serres, Margrethe H.; Romine, Margaret F.; Land, Miriam L.; Kothe, Terence B.; Fredrickson, Jim K.; Nealson, Kenneth H.; Uberbacher, Edward

    2010-03-01

    Bacteria of the genus Shewanella can thrive in different environments and demonstrate significant variability in their metabolic and ecophysiological capabilities including cold and salt tolerance. Genomic characteristics underlying this variability across species are largely unknown. In this study we address the problem by a comparison of the physiological, metabolic and genomic characteristics of 19 sequenced Shewanella species. We have employed two novel approaches based on association of a phenotypic trait with the number of the trait-specific protein families (Pfam domains) and on the conservation of synteny (order in the genome) of the trait-related genes. Our first approach is top-down and involves experimental evaluation and quantification of the species’ cold tolerance followed by identification of the correlated Pfam domains and genes with a conserved synteny. The second, a bottom-up approach, predicts novel phenotypes of the species by calculating profiles of each Pfam domain among their genomes and following pair-wise correlation of the profiles and their network clustering. Using the first approach we find a link between cold and salt tolerance of the species and the presence in the genome of a Na+/H+ antiporter gene cluster. Other cold tolerance related genes includes peptidases, chemotaxis sensory transducer proteins, a cysteine exporter, and helicases. Using the bottom-up approach we found several novel phenotypes in the newly sequenced Shewanella species, including degradation of aromatic compounds by an aerobic hybrid pathway in S. woodyi, degradation of ethanolamine by S. benthica, and propanediol degradation by S. putrefaciens CN32 and S. sp. W3-18-1.

  6. Analysis of Histones H3 and H4 Reveals Novel and Conserved Post-Translational Modifications in Sugarcane.

    PubMed

    Moraes, Izabel; Yuan, Zuo-Fei; Liu, Shichong; Souza, Glaucia Mendes; Garcia, Benjamin A; Casas-Mollano, J Armando

    2015-01-01

    Histones are the main structural components of the nucleosome, hence targets of many regulatory proteins that mediate processes involving changes in chromatin. The functional outcome of many pathways is "written" in the histones in the form of post-translational modifications that determine the final gene expression readout. As a result, modifications, alone or in combination, are important determinants of chromatin states. Histone modifications are accomplished by the addition of different chemical groups such as methyl, acetyl and phosphate. Thus, identifying and characterizing these modifications and the proteins related to them is the initial step to understanding the mechanisms of gene regulation and in the future may even provide tools for breeding programs. Several studies over the past years have contributed to increase our knowledge of epigenetic gene regulation in model organisms like Arabidopsis, yet this field remains relatively unexplored in crops. In this study we identified and initially characterized histones H3 and H4 in the monocot crop sugarcane. We discovered a number of histone genes by searching the sugarcane ESTs database. The proteins encoded correspond to canonical histones, and their variants. We also purified bulk histones and used them to map post-translational modifications in the histones H3 and H4 using mass spectrometry. Several modifications conserved in other plants, and also novel modified residues, were identified. In particular, we report O-acetylation of serine, threonine and tyrosine, a recently identified modification conserved in several eukaryotes. Additionally, the sub-nuclear localization of some well-studied modifications (i.e., H3K4me3, H3K9me2, H3K27me3, H3K9ac, H3T3ph) is described and compared to other plant species. To our knowledge, this is the first report of histones H3 and H4 as well as their post-translational modifications in sugarcane, and will provide a starting point for the study of chromatin regulation in

  7. Promoter analysis of intestinal genes induced during iron-deprivation reveals enrichment of conserved SP1-like binding sites

    PubMed Central

    Collins, James F; Hu, Zihua

    2007-01-01

    Background Iron-deficiency leads to the induction of genes related to intestinal iron absorption and homeostasis. By analyzing a large GeneChip® dataset from the rat intestine, we identified a large cluster of 228 genes that was induced by iron-deprivation. Only 2 of these genes contained 3' iron-response elements, suggesting that other regulation including transcriptional may be involved. We therefore utilized computational methods to test the hypothesis that some of the genes within this large up-regulated cluster are co-ordinately regulated by common transcriptional mechanisms. We thus identified promoters from the up-regulated gene cluster from rat, mouse and human, and performed enrichment analyses with the Clover program and the TRANSFAC database. Results Surprisingly, we found a strong statistical enrichment for SP1 binding sites in our experimental promoters as compared to background sequences. As the TRANSFAC database cannot distinguish among SP/KLF family members, many of which bind similar GC-rich DNA sequences, we surmise that SP1 or an SP1-like factor could be involved in this response. In fact, we detected induction of SP6/KLF14 in the GeneChip® studies, and confirmed it by real-time PCR. Additional computational analyses suggested that an SP1-like factor may function synergistically with a FOX TF to regulate a subset of these genes. Furthermore, analysis of promoter sequences identified many genes with multiple, conserved SP1 and FOX binding sites, the relative location of which within orthologous promoters was highly conserved. Conclusion SP1 or a closely related factor may play a primary role in the genetic response to iron-deficiency in the mammalian intestine. PMID:18005439

  8. Proteome-wide mapping of the Drosophila acetylome demonstrates a high degree of conservation of lysine acetylation.

    PubMed

    Weinert, Brian T; Wagner, Sebastian A; Horn, Heiko; Henriksen, Peter; Liu, Wenshe R; Olsen, Jesper V; Jensen, Lars J; Choudhary, Chunaram

    2011-07-26

    Posttranslational modification of proteins by acetylation and phosphorylation regulates most cellular processes in living organisms. Surprisingly, the evolutionary conservation of phosphorylated serine and threonine residues is only marginally higher than that of unmodified serines and threonines. With high-resolution mass spectrometry, we identified 1981 lysine acetylation sites in the proteome of Drosophila melanogaster. We used data sets of experimentally identified acetylation and phosphorylation sites in Drosophila and humans to analyze the evolutionary conservation of these modification sites between flies and humans. Site-level conservation analysis revealed that acetylation sites are highly conserved, significantly more so than phosphorylation sites. Furthermore, comparison of lysine conservation in Drosophila and humans with that in nematodes and zebrafish revealed that acetylated lysines were significantly more conserved than were nonacetylated lysines. Bioinformatics analysis using Gene Ontology terms suggested that the proteins with conserved acetylation control cellular processes such as protein translation, protein folding, DNA packaging, and mitochondrial metabolism. We found that acetylation of ubiquitin-conjugating E2 enzymes was evolutionarily conserved, and mutation of a conserved acetylation site impaired the function of the human E2 enzyme UBE2D3. This systems-level analysis of comparative posttranslational modification showed that acetylation is an anciently conserved modification and suggests that phosphorylation sites may have evolved faster than acetylation sites.

  9. Comparative analysis of A-to-I editing in human and non-human primate brains reveals conserved patterns and context-dependent regulation of RNA editing.

    PubMed

    O'Neil, Richard T; Wang, Xiaojing; Morabito, Michael V; Emeson, Ronald B

    2017-04-06

    A-to-I RNA editing is an important process for generating molecular diversity in the brain through modification of transcripts encoding several proteins important for neuronal signaling. We investigated the relationships between the extent of editing at multiple substrate transcripts (5HT2C, MGLUR4, CADPS, GLUR2, GLUR4, and GABRA3) in brain tissue obtained from adult humans and rhesus macaques. Several patterns emerged from these studies revealing conservation of editing across primate species. Additionally, variability in the human population allows us to make novel inferences about the co-regulation of editing at different editing sites and even across different brain regions.

  10. Suppression subtractive hybridization analysis reveals expression of conserved and novel genes in male accessory glands of the ant Leptothorax gredleri

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    genes, in addition to conserved ones for which functions can be predicted. Identifying differentially expressed genes might help to better understand molecular mechanisms involved in reproductive processes in eusocial Hymenoptera. While the novel genes could account for rapidly evolving ones driven by intra-sexual conflict between males, conserved genes imply that rather beneficial traits might get fixed by a process described as inter-sexual cooperation between males and females. PMID:20825642

  11. Antennal transcriptomes of three tortricid moths reveal putative conserved chemosensory receptors for social and habitat olfactory cues

    PubMed Central

    Gonzalez, Francisco; Witzgall, Peter; Walker, William B.

    2017-01-01

    Insects use chemical signals to find mates, food and oviposition sites. The main chemoreceptor gene families comprise odorant receptors (ORs), ionotropic receptors (IRs) and gustatory receptors (GRs). Understanding the evolution of these receptors as well as their function will assist in advancing our knowledge of how chemical stimuli are perceived and may consequently lead to the development of new insect management strategies. Tortricid moths are important pests in horticulture, forestry and agriculture around the globe. Here, we characterize chemoreceptors from the three main gene families of three economically important tortricids, based on male antennal transcriptomes using an RNA-Seq approach. We identified 49 ORs, 11 GRs and 23 IRs in the green budworm moth, Hedya nubiferana; 49 ORs, 12 GRs and 19 IRs in the beech moth, Cydia fagiglandana; and 48 ORs, 11 GRs and 19 IRs in the pea moth, Cydia nigricana. Transcript abundance estimation, phylogenetic relationships and molecular evolution rate comparisons with deorphanized receptors of Cydia pomonella allow us to hypothesize conserved functions and therefore candidate receptors for pheromones and kairomones. PMID:28150741

  12. Semi-quantitative immunohistochemical detection of 5-hydroxymethyl-cytosine reveals conservation of its tissue distribution between amphibians and mammals.

    PubMed

    Almeida, Rimple D; Sottile, Virginie; Loose, Matthew; De Sousa, Paul A; Johnson, Andrew D; Ruzov, Alexey

    2012-02-01

    5-Hydroxymethyl-cytosine (5-hmC) is a form of modified cytosine, which has recently attracted a considerable attention due to its potential role in transcriptional regulation. According to several reports 5-hydroxymethyl-cytosine distribution is tissue-specific in mammals. Thus, 5-hmC is enriched in embryonic cell populations and in adult neuronal tissue. Here, we describe a novel method of semi-quantitative immunohistochemical detection of 5-hmC and utilize it to assess the levels of this modification in amphibian tissues. We show that, similar to mammalian embryos, 5-hmC is enriched in axolotl tadpoles compared with adult tissues. Our data demonstrate that 5-hmC distribution is tissue-specific in amphibians, and that strong 5-hmC enrichment in neuronal cells is conserved between amphibians and mammals. In addition, we identify 5-hmC-enriched cell populations that are distributed in amphibian skin and connective tissue in a mosaic manner. Our results illustrate that immunochemistry can be successfully used not only for spatial identification of cells enriched with 5-hmC, but also for the semi-quantitative assessment of the levels of this epigenetic modification in single cells of different tissues.

  13. Identification of S-phase DNA damage-response targets in fission yeast reveals conservation of damage-response networks

    PubMed Central

    Willis, Nicholas A.; Zhou, Chunshui; Elia, Andrew E. H.; Murray, Johanne M.; Carr, Antony M.; Elledge, Stephen J.; Rhind, Nicholas

    2016-01-01

    The cellular response to DNA damage during S-phase regulates a complicated network of processes, including cell-cycle progression, gene expression, DNA replication kinetics, and DNA repair. In fission yeast, this S-phase DNA damage response (DDR) is coordinated by two protein kinases: Rad3, the ortholog of mammalian ATR, and Cds1, the ortholog of mammalian Chk2. Although several critical downstream targets of Rad3 and Cds1 have been identified, most of their presumed targets are unknown, including the targets responsible for regulating replication kinetics and coordinating replication and repair. To characterize targets of the S-phase DDR, we identified proteins phosphorylated in response to methyl methanesulfonate (MMS)-induced S-phase DNA damage in wild-type, rad3∆, and cds1∆ cells by proteome-wide mass spectrometry. We found a broad range of S-phase–specific DDR targets involved in gene expression, stress response, regulation of mitosis and cytokinesis, and DNA replication and repair. These targets are highly enriched for proteins required for viability in response to MMS, indicating their biological significance. Furthermore, the regulation of these proteins is similar in fission and budding yeast, across 300 My of evolution, demonstrating a deep conservation of S-phase DDR targets and suggesting that these targets may be critical for maintaining genome stability in response to S-phase DNA damage across eukaryotes. PMID:27298342

  14. Comparative Mitogenomics of the Genus Odontobutis (Perciformes: Gobioidei: Odontobutidae) Revealed Conserved Gene Rearrangement and High Sequence Variations

    PubMed Central

    Ma, Zhihong; Yang, Xuefen; Bercsenyi, Miklos; Wu, Junjie; Yu, Yongyao; Wei, Kaijian; Fan, Qixue; Yang, Ruibin

    2015-01-01

    To understand the molecular evolution of mitochondrial genomes (mitogenomes) in the genus Odontobutis, the mitogenome of Odontobutis yaluensis was sequenced and compared with those of another four Odontobutis species. Our results displayed similar mitogenome features among species in genome organization, base composition, codon usage, and gene rearrangement. The identical gene rearrangement of trnS-trnL-trnH tRNA cluster observed in mitogenomes of these five closely related freshwater sleepers suggests that this unique gene order is conserved within Odontobutis. Additionally, the present gene order and the positions of associated intergenic spacers of these Odontobutis mitogenomes indicate that this unusual gene rearrangement results from tandem duplication and random loss of large-scale gene regions. Moreover, these mitogenomes exhibit a high level of sequence variation, mainly due to the differences of corresponding intergenic sequences in gene rearrangement regions and the heterogeneity of tandem repeats in the control regions. Phylogenetic analyses support Odontobutis species with shared gene rearrangement forming a monophyletic group, and the interspecific phylogenetic relationships are associated with structural differences among their mitogenomes. The present study contributes to understanding the evolutionary patterns of Odontobutidae species. PMID:26492246

  15. Genome-wide analyses of Epstein-Barr virus reveal conserved RNA structures and a novel stable intronic sequence RNA

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) is a human herpesvirus implicated in cancer and autoimmune disorders. Little is known concerning the roles of RNA structure in this important human pathogen. This study provides the first comprehensive genome-wide survey of RNA and RNA structure in EBV. Results Novel EBV RNAs and RNA structures were identified by computational modeling and RNA-Seq analyses of EBV. Scans of the genomic sequences of four EBV strains (EBV-1, EBV-2, GD1, and GD2) and of the closely related Macacine herpesvirus 4 using the RNAz program discovered 265 regions with high probability of forming conserved RNA structures. Secondary structure models are proposed for these regions based on a combination of free energy minimization and comparative sequence analysis. The analysis of RNA-Seq data uncovered the first observation of a stable intronic sequence RNA (sisRNA) in EBV. The abundance of this sisRNA rivals that of the well-known and highly expressed EBV-encoded non-coding RNAs (EBERs). Conclusion This work identifies regions of the EBV genome likely to generate functional RNAs and RNA structures, provides structural models for these regions, and discusses potential functions suggested by the modeled structures. Enhanced understanding of the EBV transcriptome will guide future experimental analyses of the discovered RNAs and RNA structures. PMID:23937650

  16. Targeted mutation of the gene encoding prion protein in zebrafish reveals a conserved role in neuron excitability.

    PubMed

    Fleisch, Valerie C; Leighton, Patricia L A; Wang, Hao; Pillay, Laura M; Ritzel, R Gary; Bhinder, Ganive; Roy, Birbickram; Tierney, Keith B; Ali, Declan W; Waskiewicz, Andrew J; Allison, W Ted

    2013-07-01

    The function of the cellular prion protein (PrP(C)) in healthy brains remains poorly understood, in part because Prnp knockout mice are viable. On the other hand, transient knockdown of Prnp homologs in zebrafish (including two paralogs, prp1 and prp2) has suggested that PrP(C) is required for CNS development, cell adhesion, and neuroprotection. It has been argued that zebrafish Prp2 is most similar to mammalian PrP(C), yet it has remained intransigent to the most thorough confirmations of reagent specificity during knockdown. Thus we investigated the role of prp2 using targeted gene disruption via zinc finger nucleases. Prp2(-/-) zebrafish were viable and did not display overt developmental phenotypes. Back-crossing female prp2(-/-) fish ruled out a role for maternal mRNA contributions. Prp2(-/-) larvae were found to have increased seizure-like behavior following exposure to the convulsant pentylenetetrazol (PTZ), as compared to wild type fish. In situ recordings from intact hindbrains demonstrated that prp2 regulates closing of N-Methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptors, concomitant with neuroprotection during glutamate excitotoxicity. Overall, the knockout of Prp2 function in zebrafish independently confirmed hypothesized roles for PrP, identifying deeply conserved functions in post-developmental regulation of neuron excitability that are consequential to the etiology of prion and Alzheimer diseases.

  17. Exceptional conservation of horse-human gene order on X chromosome revealed by high-resolution radiation hybrid mapping.

    PubMed

    Raudsepp, Terje; Lee, Eun-Joon; Kata, Srinivas R; Brinkmeyer, Candice; Mickelson, James R; Skow, Loren C; Womack, James E; Chowdhary, Bhanu P

    2004-02-24

    Development of a dense map of the horse genome is key to efforts aimed at identifying genes controlling health, reproduction, and performance. We herein report a high-resolution gene map of the horse (Equus caballus) X chromosome (ECAX) generated by developing and typing 116 gene-specific and 12 short tandem repeat markers on the 5,000-rad horse x hamster whole-genome radiation hybrid panel and mapping 29 gene loci by fluorescence in situ hybridization. The human X chromosome sequence was used as a template to select genes at 1-Mb intervals to develop equine orthologs. Coupled with our previous data, the new map comprises a total of 175 markers (139 genes and 36 short tandem repeats, of which 53 are fluorescence in situ hybridization mapped) distributed on average at approximately 880-kb intervals along the chromosome. This is the densest and most uniformly distributed chromosomal map presently available in any mammalian species other than humans and rodents. Comparison of the horse and human X chromosome maps shows remarkable conservation of gene order along the entire span of the chromosomes, including the location of the centromere. An overview of the status of the horse map in relation to mouse, livestock, and companion animal species is also provided. The map will be instrumental for analysis of X linked health and fertility traits in horses by facilitating identification of targeted chromosomal regions for isolation of polymorphic markers, building bacterial artificial chromosome contigs, or sequencing.

  18. The narrow sheath duplicate genes: sectors of dual aneuploidy reveal ancestrally conserved gene functions during maize leaf development.

    PubMed Central

    Scanlon, M J; Chen, K D; McKnight CC, I V

    2000-01-01

    The narrow sheath mutant of maize displays a leaf and plant stature phenotype controlled by the duplicate factor mutations narrow sheath1 and narrow sheath2. Mutant leaves fail to develop a lateral domain that includes the leaf margins. Genetic data are presented to show that the narrow sheath mutations map to duplicated chromosomal regions, reflecting an ancestral duplication of the maize genome. Genetic and cytogenetic evidence indicates that the original mutation at narrow sheath2 is associated with a chromosomal inversion on the long arm of chromosome 4. Meristematic sectors of dual aneuploidy were generated, producing plants genetically mosaic for NARROW SHEATH function. These mosaic plants exhibited characteristic half-plant phenotypes, in which leaves from one side of the plant were of nonmutant morphology and leaves from the opposite side were of narrow sheath mutant phenotype. The data suggest that the narrow sheath duplicate genes may perform ancestrally conserved, redundant functions in the development of a lateral domain in the maize leaf. PMID:10880496

  19. Comparative Mitogenomics of the Genus Odontobutis (Perciformes: Gobioidei: Odontobutidae) Revealed Conserved Gene Rearrangement and High Sequence Variations.

    PubMed

    Ma, Zhihong; Yang, Xuefen; Bercsenyi, Miklos; Wu, Junjie; Yu, Yongyao; Wei, Kaijian; Fan, Qixue; Yang, Ruibin

    2015-10-20

    To understand the molecular evolution of mitochondrial genomes (mitogenomes) in the genus Odontobutis, the mitogenome of Odontobutis yaluensis was sequenced and compared with those of another four Odontobutis species. Our results displayed similar mitogenome features among species in genome organization, base composition, codon usage, and gene rearrangement. The identical gene rearrangement of trnS-trnL-trnH tRNA cluster observed in mitogenomes of these five closely related freshwater sleepers suggests that this unique gene order is conserved within Odontobutis. Additionally, the present gene order and the positions of associated intergenic spacers of these Odontobutis mitogenomes indicate that this unusual gene rearrangement results from tandem duplication and random loss of large-scale gene regions. Moreover, these mitogenomes exhibit a high level of sequence variation, mainly due to the differences of corresponding intergenic sequences in gene rearrangement regions and the heterogeneity of tandem repeats in the control regions. Phylogenetic analyses support Odontobutis species with shared gene rearrangement forming a monophyletic group, and the interspecific phylogenetic relationships are associated with structural differences among their mitogenomes. The present study contributes to understanding the evolutionary patterns of Odontobutidae species.

  20. Systematic Analysis of Conservation Relations in Escherichia coli Genome-Scale Metabolic Network Reveals Novel Growth Media

    PubMed Central

    Imieliński, Marcin; Belta, Calin; Rubin, Harvey; Halász, Ádam

    2006-01-01

    A biochemical species is called producible in a constraints-based metabolic model if a feasible steady-state flux configuration exists that sustains its nonzero concentration during growth. Extreme semipositive conservation relations (ESCRs) are the simplest semipositive linear combinations of species concentrations that are invariant to all metabolic flux configurations. In this article, we outline a fundamental relationship between the ESCRs of a metabolic network and the producibility of a biochemical species under a nutrient media. We exploit this relationship in an algorithm that systematically enumerates all minimal nutrient sets that render an objective species weakly producible (i.e., producible in the absence of thermodynamic constraints) through a simple traversal of ESCRs. We apply our results to a recent genome scale model of Escherichia coli metabolism, in which we traverse the 51 anhydrous ESCRs of the metabolic network to determine all 928 minimal aqueous nutrient media that render biomass weakly producible. Applying irreversibility constraints, we find 287 of these 928 nutrient sets to be thermodynamically feasible. We also find that an additional 365 of these nutrient sets are thermodynamically feasible in the presence of oxygen. Since biomass producibility is commonly used as a surrogate for growth in genome scale metabolic models, our results represent testable hypotheses of alternate growth media derived from in silico analysis of the E. coli genome scale metabolic network. PMID:16461408

  1. Amphibian interorder nuclear transfer embryos reveal conserved embryonic gene transcription, but deficient DNA replication or chromosome segregation.

    PubMed

    Narbonne, Patrick; Gurdon, John B

    2012-01-01

    Early interspecies nuclear transfer (iNT) experiments suggested that a foreign nucleus may become permanently damaged after a few rounds of cell division in the cytoplasm of another species. That is, in some distant species combinations, nucleocytoplasmic hybrid (cybrid) blastula nuclei can no longer support development, even if they are back-transferred into their own kind of egg cytoplasm. We monitored foreign DNA amplification and RNA production by quantitative PCR (qPCR) and RT-qPCR in interorder amphibian hybrids and cybrids formed by the transfer of newt (Pleurodeles waltl) embryonic nuclei into intact and enucleated frog (Xenopus laevis) eggs. We found a dramatic reduction in the expansion of foreign DNA and cell numbers in developing cybrid embryos that correlated with reduced gene transcription. Interestingly, expansion in cell numbers was rescued by the recipient species (Xenopus) maternal genome in iNT hybrids, but it did not improve P. waltl DNA expansion or gene transcription. Also, foreign gene transcripts, normalized to DNA copy numbers, were mostly normal in both iNT hybrids and cybrids. Thus, incomplete foreign DNA replication and/or chromosome segregation during cell division may be the major form of nuclear damage occurring as a result of nuclear replication in a foreign cytoplasmic environment. It also shows that the mechanisms of embryonic gene transcription are highly conserved across amphibians and may not be a major cause of cybrid lethality.

  2. An Evolutionarily Conserved Mechanism for Activity-Dependent Visual Circuit Development

    PubMed Central

    Pratt, Kara G.; Hiramoto, Masaki; Cline, Hollis T.

    2016-01-01

    Neural circuit development is an activity-dependent process. This activity can be spontaneous, such as the retinal waves that course across the mammalian embryonic retina, or it can be sensory-driven, such as the activation of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) by visual stimuli. Whichever the source, neural activity provides essential instruction to the developing circuit. Indeed, experimentally altering activity has been shown to impact circuit development and function in many different ways and in many different model systems. In this review, we contemplate the idea that retinal waves in amniotes, the animals that develop either in ovo or utero (namely reptiles, birds and mammals) could be an evolutionary adaptation to life on land, and that the anamniotes, animals whose development is entirely external (namely the aquatic amphibians and fish), do not display retinal waves, most likely because they simply don’t need them. We then review what is known about the function of both retinal waves and visual stimuli on their respective downstream targets, and predict that the experience-dependent development of the tadpole visual system is a blueprint of what will be found in future studies of the effects of spontaneous retinal waves on instructing development of retinorecipient targets such as the superior colliculus (SC) and the lateral geniculate nucleus. PMID:27818623

  3. Evidence for an Evolutionarily Conserved Memory Coding Scheme in the Mammalian Hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Thome, Alexander; Marrone, Diano F; Ellmore, Timothy M; Chawla, Monica K; Lipa, Peter; Ramirez-Amaya, Victor; Lisanby, Sarah H; McNaughton, Bruce L; Barnes, Carol A

    2017-03-08

    Decades of research identify the hippocampal formation as central to memory storage and recall. Events are stored via distributed population codes, the parameters of which (e.g., sparsity and overlap) determine both storage capacity and fidelity. However, it remains unclear whether the parameters governing information storage are similar between species. Because episodic memories are rooted in the space in which they are experienced, the hippocampal response to navigation is often used as a proxy to study memory. Critically, recent studies in rodents that mimic the conditions typical of navigation studies in humans and nonhuman primates (i.e., virtual reality) show that reduced sensory input alters hippocampal representations of space. The goal of this study was to quantify this effect and determine whether there are commonalities in information storage across species. Using functional molecular imaging, we observe that navigation in virtual environments elicits activity in fewer CA1 neurons relative to real-world conditions. Conversely, comparable neuronal activity is observed in hippocampus region CA3 and the dentate gyrus under both conditions. Surprisingly, we also find evidence that the absolute number of neurons used to represent an experience is relatively stable between nonhuman primates and rodents. We propose that this convergence reflects an optimal ensemble size for episodic memories.SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT One primary factor constraining memory capacity is the sparsity of the engram, the proportion of neurons that encode a single experience. Investigating sparsity in humans is hampered by the lack of single-cell resolution and differences in behavioral protocols. Sparsity can be quantified in freely moving rodents, but extrapolating these data to humans assumes that information storage is comparable across species and is robust to restraint-induced reduction in sensory input. Here, we test these assumptions and show that species differences in brain size build memory capacity without altering the structure of the data being stored. Furthermore, sparsity in most of the hippocampus is resilient to reduced sensory information. This information is vital to integrating animal data with human imaging navigation studies.

  4. Osmotically induced synthesis of the compatible solute hydroxyectoine is mediated by an evolutionarily conserved ectoine hydroxylase.

    PubMed

    Bursy, Jan; Pierik, Antonio J; Pica, Nathalie; Bremer, Erhard

    2007-10-26

    By using natural abundance (13)C NMR spectroscopy, we investigated the types of compatible solutes synthesized in a variety of Bacilli under high salinity growth conditions. Glutamate, proline, and ectoine were the dominant compatible solutes synthesized by the various Bacillus species. The majority of the inspected Bacilli produced the tetrahydropyrimidine ectoine in response to high salinity stress, and a subset of these also synthesized a hydroxylation derivative of ectoine, 5-hydroxyectoine. In Salibacillus salexigens, a representative of the ectoine- and 5-hydroxyectoine-producing species, ectoine production was linearly correlated with the salinity of the growth medium and dependent on an ectABC biosynthetic operon. The formation of 5-hydroxyectoine was primarily a stationary growth phase phenomenon. The enzyme responsible for ectoine hydroxylation (EctD) was purified from S. salexigens to apparent homogeneity. The EctD protein was shown in vitro to directly hydroxylate ectoine in a reaction dependent on iron(II), molecular oxygen, and 2-oxoglutarate. We identified the structural gene (ectD) for the ectoine hydroxylase in S. salexigens. Northern blot analysis showed that the transcript levels of the ectABC and ectD genes increased as a function of salinity. Many EctD-related proteins can be found in data base searches in various Bacteria. Each of these bacterial species also contains an ectABC ectoine biosynthetic gene cluster, suggesting that 5-hydroxyectoine biosynthesis strictly depends on the prior synthesis of ectoine. Our data base searches and the biochemical characterization of the EctD protein from S. salexigens suggest that the EctD-related ectoine hydroxylases are members of a new subfamily within the non-heme-containing, iron(II)- and 2-oxoglutarate-dependent dioxygenase superfamily (EC 1.14.11).

  5. Assembly of an Evolutionarily Conserved Alternative Proteasome Isoform in Human Cells.

    PubMed

    Padmanabhan, Achuth; Vuong, Simone Anh-Thu; Hochstrasser, Mark

    2016-03-29

    Targeted intracellular protein degradation in eukaryotes is largely mediated by the proteasome. Here, we report the formation of an alternative proteasome isoform in human cells, previously found only in budding yeast, that bears an altered subunit arrangement in the outer ring of the proteasome core particle. These proteasomes result from incorporation of an additional α4 (PSMA7) subunit in the position normally occupied by α3 (PSMA4). Assembly of "α4-α4" proteasomes depends on the relative cellular levels of α4 and α3 and on the proteasome assembly chaperone PAC3. The oncogenic tyrosine kinases ABL and ARG and the tumor suppressor BRCA1 regulate cellular α4 levels and formation of α4-α4 proteasomes. Cells primed to assemble α4-α4 proteasomes exhibit enhanced resistance to toxic metal ions. Taken together, our results establish the existence of an alternative mammalian proteasome isoform and suggest a potential role in enabling cells to adapt to environmental stresses.

  6. Ghrelin O-Acyl Transferase in Zebrafish Is an Evolutionarily Conserved Peptide Upregulated During Calorie Restriction

    PubMed Central

    Hatef, Azadeh; Yufa, Roman

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Ghrelin is a multifunctional orexigenic hormone with a unique acyl modification enabled by ghrelin O-acyl transferase (GOAT). Ghrelin is well-characterized in nonmammals, and GOAT sequences of several fishes are available in the GenBank. However, endogenous GOAT in non-mammals remains poorly understood. In this research, GOAT sequence comparison, tissue-specific GOAT expression, and its regulation by nutrient status and exogenous ghrelin were studied. It was found that the bioactive core of zebrafish GOAT amino acid sequence share high identity with that of mammals. GOAT mRNA was most abundant in the gut. GOAT-like immunoreactivity (i.r.) was found colocalized with ghrelin in the gastric mucosa. Food deprivation increased, and feeding decreased GOAT and preproghrelin mRNA expression in the brain and gut. GOAT and ghrelin peptides in the gut and brain showed corresponding decrease in food-deprived state. Intraperitoneal injection of acylated fish ghrelin caused a significant decrease in GOAT mRNA expression, suggesting a feedback mechanism regulating its abundance. Together, these results provide the first in-depth characterization of GOAT in a non-mammal. Our results demonstrate that endogenous GOAT expression is responsive to metabolic status and availability of acylated ghrelin, providing further evidences for GOAT in the regulation of feeding in teleosts. PMID:26226634

  7. Evolutionarily distinct bacteriophage endolysins featuring conserved peptidoglycan cleavage sites protect mice from MRSA infection

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Staphylococcus aureus is a Gram-positive pathogen relevant for both human and animal health. With multi-drug resistant S. aureus strains becoming increasingly prevalent, alternative therapeutics are urgently needed. Bacteriophage endolysins (peptidoglycan hydrolases, PGH) are capable of killing Gra...

  8. The Drosophila wings apart Gene Anchors a Novel, Evolutionarily Conserved Pathway of Neuromuscular Development

    PubMed Central

    Morriss, Ginny R.; Jaramillo, Carmelita T.; Mikolajczak, Crystal M.; Duong, Sandy; Jaramillo, MaryAnn S.; Cripps, Richard M.

    2013-01-01

    wings apart (wap) is a recessive, semilethal gene located on the X chromosome in Drosophila melanogaster, which is required for normal wing-vein patterning. We show that the wap mutation also results in loss of the adult jump muscle. We use complementation mapping and gene-specific RNA interference to localize the wap locus to the proximal X chromosome. We identify the annotated gene CG14614 as the gene affected by the wap mutation, since one wap allele contains a non-sense mutation in CG14614, and a genomic fragment containing only CG14614 rescues the jump-muscle phenotypes of two wap mutant alleles. The wap gene lies centromere-proximal to touch-insensitive larva B and centromere-distal to CG14619, which is tentatively assigned as the gene affected in introverted mutants. In mutant wap animals, founder cell precursors for the jump muscle are specified early in development, but are later lost. Through tissue-specific knockdowns, we demonstrate that wap function is required in both the musculature and the nervous system for normal jump-muscle formation. wap/CG14614 is homologous to vertebrate wdr68, DDB1 and CUL4 associated factor 7, which also are expressed in neuromuscular tissues. Thus, our findings provide insight into mechanisms of neuromuscular development in higher animals and facilitate the understanding of neuromuscular diseases that may result from mis-expression of muscle-specific or neuron-specific genes. PMID:24026097

  9. Neprilysins: an evolutionarily conserved family of metalloproteases that play important roles in reproduction in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Sitnik, Jessica L; Francis, Carmen; Hens, Korneel; Huybrechts, Roger; Wolfner, Mariana F; Callaerts, Patrick

    2014-03-01

    Members of the M13 class of metalloproteases have been implicated in diseases and in reproductive fitness. Nevertheless, their physiological role remains poorly understood. To obtain a tractable model with which to analyze this protein family's function, we characterized the gene family in Drosophila melanogaster and focused on reproductive phenotypes. The D. melanogaster genome contains 24 M13 class protease homologs, some of which are orthologs of human proteases, including neprilysin. Many are expressed in the reproductive tracts of either sex. Using RNAi we individually targeted the five Nep genes most closely related to vertebrate neprilysin, Nep1-5, to investigate their roles in reproduction. A reduction in Nep1, Nep2, or Nep4 expression in females reduced egg laying. Nep1 and Nep2 are required in the CNS and the spermathecae for wild-type fecundity. Females that are null for Nep2 also show defects as hosts of sperm competition as well as an increased rate of depletion for stored sperm. Furthermore, eggs laid by Nep2 mutant females are fertilized normally, but arrest early in embryonic development. In the male, only Nep1 was required to induce normal patterns of female egg laying. Reduction in the expression of Nep2-5 in the male did not cause any dramatic effects on reproductive fitness, which suggests that these genes are either nonessential for male fertility or perform redundant functions. Our results suggest that, consistent with the functions of neprilysins in mammals, these proteins are also required for reproduction in Drosophila, opening up this model system for further functional analysis of this protein class and their substrates.

  10. Imaging evolutionarily conserved neural networks: preferential activation of the olfactory system by food-related odor.

    PubMed

    Kulkarni, Praveen; Stolberg, Tara; Sullivanjr, J M; Ferris, Craig F

    2012-04-21

    Rodents routinely forge and rely on hippocampal-dependent spatial memory to guide them to sources of caloric rich food in their environment. Has evolution affected the olfactory system and its connections to the hippocampus and limbic cortex, so rodents have an innate sensitivity to energy rich food and their location? To test this notion, we used functional magnetic resonance imaging in awake rats to observe changes in brain activity in response to four odors: benzaldehyde (almond odor), isoamyl acetate (banana odor), methyl benzoate (rosy odor), and limonene (citrus odor). We chose the almond odor because nuts are high in calories and would be expected to convey greater valance as compared to the other odors. Moreover, the standard food chow is devoid of nuts, so laboratory bred rats would not have any previous exposure to this food. Activation maps derived from computational analysis using a 3D segmented rat MRI atlas were dramatically different between odors. Animals exposed to banana, rosy and citrus odors showed modest activation of the primary olfactory system, hippocampus and limbic cortex. However, animals exposed to almond showed a robust increase in brain activity in the primary olfactory system particularly the main olfactory bulb, anterior olfactory nucleus and tenia tecta. The most significant difference in brain activation between odors was observed in the hippocampus and limbic cortex. These findings show that fMRI can be used to identify neural circuits that have an innate sensitivity to environmental stimuli that may help in an animal's survival.

  11. Saccharomyces cerevisiae SMT4 encodes an evolutionarily conserved protease with a role in chromosome condensation regulation.

    PubMed Central

    Strunnikov, A V; Aravind, L; Koonin, E V

    2001-01-01

    In a search for regulatory genes affecting the targeting of the condensin complex to chromatin in Saccharomyces cerevisiae, we identified a member of the adenovirus protease family, SMT4. SMT4 overexpression suppresses the temperature-sensitive conditional lethal phenotype of smc2-6, but not smc2-8 or smc4-1. A disruption allele of SMT4 has a prominent chromosome phenotype: impaired targeting of Smc4p-GFP to rDNA chromatin. Site-specific mutagenesis of the predicted protease active site cysteine and histidine residues of Smt4p abolishes the SMT4 function in vivo. The previously uncharacterized SIZ1 (SAP and Miz) gene, which encodes a protein containing a predicted DNA-binding SAP module and a Miz finger, is identified as a bypass suppressor of the growth defect associated with the SMT4 disruption. The SIZ1 gene disruption is synthetically lethal with the SIZ2 deletion. We propose that SMT4, SIZ1, and SIZ2 are involved in a novel pathway of chromosome maintenance. PMID:11333221

  12. Evolutionarily conserved amino acids in TCR V regions and MHC control their interaction

    PubMed Central

    Marrack, Philippa; Scott-Browne, James P.; Dai, Shaodong; Gapin, Laurent; Kappler, John W.

    2011-01-01

    Alpha/beta T cell receptors (TCRs) react with major histocompatibility complex proteins (MHC) plus peptides, a poorly understood phenomenon, probably because thymocytes bearing TCRs that manifest MHC-reactivity too well are lost by negative selection. Only TCRs with attenuated ability to react with MHC appear on mature T cells. Also, the interaction sites between TCRs and MHC may be inherently flexible and hence difficult to spot. Contacts between TCRs and MHC in the solved structures of their complexes were reevaluated with these points in mind. The results show that frequently used amino acids in TCR CDR1 and CDR2 regions are often used to bind MHC, in areas around small amino acids on the surfaces of MHC α helices that form a cup, allowing somewhat flexible binding of the TCRs. The TCR amino acids involved are specific to families of V regions and partially different rules govern recognition of MHC1 versus MHCII. PMID:18304006

  13. Monoacylglycerol Lipases Act as Evolutionarily Conserved Regulators of Non-oxidative Ethanol Metabolism*

    PubMed Central

    Heier, Christoph; Taschler, Ulrike; Radulovic, Maja; Aschauer, Philip; Eichmann, Thomas O.; Grond, Susanne; Wolinski, Heimo; Oberer, Monika; Zechner, Rudolf; Kohlwein, Sepp D.; Zimmermann, Robert

    2016-01-01

    Fatty acid ethyl esters (FAEEs) are non-oxidative metabolites of ethanol that accumulate in human tissues upon ethanol intake. Although FAEEs are considered as toxic metabolites causing cellular dysfunction and tissue damage, the enzymology of FAEE metabolism remains poorly understood. In this study, we used a biochemical screen in Saccharomyces cerevisiae to identify and characterize putative hydrolases involved in FAEE catabolism. We found that Yju3p, the functional orthologue of mammalian monoacylglycerol lipase (MGL), contributes >90% of cellular FAEE hydrolase activity, and its loss leads to the accumulation of FAEE. Heterologous expression of mammalian MGL in yju3Δ mutants restored cellular FAEE hydrolase activity and FAEE catabolism. Moreover, overexpression or pharmacological inhibition of MGL in mouse AML-12 hepatocytes decreased or increased FAEE levels, respectively. FAEEs were transiently incorporated into lipid droplets (LDs) and both Yju3p and MGL co-localized with these organelles. We conclude that the storage of FAEE in inert LDs and their mobilization by LD-resident FAEE hydrolases facilitate a controlled metabolism of these potentially toxic lipid metabolites. PMID:27036938

  14. Quantitative trait loci mapping in Brassica rapa revealed the structural and functional conservation of genetic loci governing morphological and yield component traits in the A, B, and C subgenomes of Brassica species.

    PubMed

    Li, Xiaonan; Ramchiary, Nirala; Dhandapani, Vignesh; Choi, Su Ryun; Hur, Yoonkang; Nou, Ill-Sup; Yoon, Moo Kyoung; Lim, Yong Pyo

    2013-02-01

    Brassica rapa is an important crop species that produces vegetables, oilseed, and fodder. Although many studies reported quantitative trait loci (QTL) mapping, the genes governing most of its economically important traits are still unknown. In this study, we report QTL mapping for morphological and yield component traits in B. rapa and comparative map alignment between B. rapa, B. napus, B. juncea, and Arabidopsis thaliana to identify candidate genes and conserved QTL blocks between them. A total of 95 QTL were identified in different crucifer blocks of the B. rapa genome. Through synteny analysis with A. thaliana, B. rapa candidate genes and intronic and exonic single nucleotide polymorphisms in the parental lines were detected from whole genome resequenced data, a few of which were validated by mapping them to the QTL regions. Semi-quantitative reverse transcriptase PCR analysis showed differences in the expression levels of a few genes in parental lines. Comparative mapping identified five key major evolutionarily conserved crucifer blocks (R, J, F, E, and W) harbouring QTL for morphological and yield components traits between the A, B, and C subgenomes of B. rapa, B. juncea, and B. napus. The information of the identified candidate genes could be used for breeding B. rapa and other related Brassica species.

  15. Functional characterization of a conserved archaeal viral operon revealing single-stranded DNA binding, annealing and nuclease activities.

    PubMed

    Guo, Yang; Kragelund, Birthe B; White, Malcolm F; Peng, Xu

    2015-06-19

    The majority of archaeal viral genes are of unknown function hindering our understanding of the virus life cycle and viral interactions with their host. Here, we first describe functional characterization of ORF131b (gp17) and ORF436 (gp18) of Sulfolobus islandicus rod-shaped virus 2 (SIRV2), both encoding proteins of unknown function and forming an operon with ORF207 (gp19). SIRV2 gp17 was found to be a single-stranded DNA (ssDNA) binding protein different in structure from all previously characterized ssDNA binding proteins. Mutagenesis of a few conserved basic residues suggested a U-shaped binding path for ssDNA. The recombinant gp18 showed an ssDNA annealing activity often associated with helicases and recombinases. To gain insight into the biological role of the entire operon, we characterized SIRV2 gp19 and showed it to possess a 5' → 3' ssDNA exonuclease activity, in addition to the previously demonstrated ssDNA endonuclease activity. Further, in vitro pull-down assay demonstrated interactions between gp17 and gp18 and between gp18 and gp19 with the former being mediated by the intrinsically disordered C-terminus of gp17. The strand-displacement replication mode proposed previously for rudiviruses and the close interaction among the ssDNA binding, annealing and nuclease proteins strongly point to a role of the gene operon in genome maturation and/or DNA recombination that may function in viral DNA replication/repair.

  16. A Comprehensive Phylogeny Reveals Functional Conservation of the UV-B Photoreceptor UVR8 from Green Algae to Higher Plants

    PubMed Central

    Fernández, María B.; Tossi, Vanesa; Lamattina, Lorenzo; Cassia, Raúl

    2016-01-01

    Ultraviolet-B (UV-B) is present in sunlight (280–315 nm) and has diverse effects on living organisms. Low fluence rate of exposure induces a specific photomorphogenic response regulated by the UV-B response locus 8 (UVR8) receptor. UVR8 was first described in Arabidopsis thaliana. In the absence of stimuli it is located in the cytoplasm as a homodimer. However, upon UV-B irradiation, it switches to a monomer and interacts with the ubiquitin ligase E3 COP1 via the UVR8 β-propeller domain and the VP core. This induces the expression of the transcription factor HY5 leading to changes in the expression of genes associated with UV-B acclimation and stress tolerance. UVR8 senses UV-B through tryptophan residues being Trp233 and 285 the most important. Based on the comparison and analysis of UVR8 functionally important motifs, we report a comprehensive phylogeny of UVR8, trying to identify UVR8 homologs and the ancestral organism where this gene could be originated. Results obtained showed that Chlorophytes are the first organisms from the Viridiplantae group where UVR8 appears. UVR8 is present in green algae, bryophytes, lycophytes, and angiosperms. All the sequences identified contain tryptophans 233 and 285, arginines involved in homodimerization and the VP domain suggesting they are true UVR8 photoreceptors. We also determined that some species from bryophytes and angiosperms contain more than one UVR8 gene copy posing the question if UVR8 could constitute a gene family in these species. In conclusion, we described the functional conservation among UVR8 proteins from green algae to higher plants. PMID:27895654

  17. Crystal structure of human antibody 2909 reveals conserved features of quaternary structure-specific antibodies that potently neutralize HIV-1.

    PubMed

    Changela, Anita; Wu, Xueling; Yang, Yongping; Zhang, Baoshan; Zhu, Jiang; Nardone, Glenn A; O'Dell, Sijy; Pancera, Marie; Gorny, Miroslaw K; Phogat, Sanjay; Robinson, James E; Stamatatos, Leonidas; Zolla-Pazner, Susan; Mascola, John R; Kwong, Peter D

    2011-03-01

    Monoclonal antibody 2909 belongs to a class of potently neutralizing antibodies that recognize quaternary epitopes on HIV-1. Some members of this class, such as 2909, are strain specific, while others, such as antibody PG16, are broadly neutralizing; all, however, recognize a region on the gp120 envelope glycoprotein that includes two loops (V2 and V3) and forms appropriately only in the oligomeric HIV-1 spike (gp120(3)/gp41(3)). Here we present the crystal structure of 2909 and report structure-function analysis with antibody chimeras composed of 2909 and other members of this antibody class. The 2909 structure was dominated by a heavy-chain third-complementarity-determining region (CDR H3) of 21 residues, which comprised 36% of the combining surface and formed a β-hairpin club extending ∼20 Å beyond the rest of the antibody. Sequence analysis and mass spectrometry identified sites of tyrosine sulfation at the middle and top of CDR H3; substitutions with phenylalanine either ablated (middle substitution) or substantially diminished (top substitution) neutralization. Chimeric antibodies composed of heavy and light chains, exchanged between 2909 and other members of the class, indicated a substantial lack of complementation. Comparison of 2909 to PG16 (which is tyrosine sulfated and the only other member of the class for which a structure has previously been reported) showed that both utilize protruding, anionic CDR H3s for recognition. Thus, despite some diversity, members of this class share structural and functional similarities, with conserved features of the CDR H3 subdomain likely reflecting prevalent solutions by the human immune system for recognition of a quaternary site of HIV-1 vulnerability.

  18. IDENTIFICATION OF NICOTINAMIDE MONONUCLEOTIDE DEAMIDASE OF THE BACTERIAL PYRIDINE NUCLEOTIDE CYCLE REVEALS A NOVEL BROADLY CONSERVED AMIDOHYDROLASE FAMILY

    SciTech Connect

    Galeazzi, Luca; Bocci, Paolo; Amici, Adolfo; Brunetti, Lucia; Ruggieri, Silverio; Romine, Margaret F.; Reed, Samantha B.; Osterman, Andrei; Rodionov, Dmitry A.; Sorci, Leonardo; Raffaelli, Nadia

    2011-09-27

    The pyridine nucleotide cycle (PNC) is a network of salvage and recycling routes maintaining homeostasis of NAD(P) cofactor pool in the cell. Nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN) deamidase (EC 3.5.1.42), one of the key enzymes of the bacterial PNC was originally described in Enterobacteria, but the corresponding gene eluded identification for over 30 years. A genomics-based reconstruction of NAD metabolism across hundreds bacterial species suggested that NMN deamidase reaction is the only possible way of nicotinamide salvage in the marine bacterium Shewanella oneidensis. This prediction was verified via purification of native NMN deamidase from S. oneidensis followed by the identification of the respective gene, termed pncC. Enzymatic characterization of the PncC protein, as well as phenotype analysis of deletion mutants, confirmed its proposed biochemical and physiological function in S. oneidensis. Of the three PncC homologs present in E. coli, NMN deamidase activity was confirmed only for the recombinant purified product of the ygaD gene. A comparative analysis at the level of sequence and three dimensional structure, which is available for one of the PncC family member, shows no homology with any previously described amidohydrolases. Multiple alignment analysis of functional and non functional PncC homologs, together with NMN docking experiments, allowed us to tentatively identify the active site area and conserved residues therein. An observed broad phylogenomic distribution of predicted functional PncCs in bacterial kingdom is consistent with a possible role in detoxification of NMN, resulting from NAD utilization by DNA ligase.

  19. Genome‐wide analysis reveals conserved transcriptional responses downstream of resting potential change in Xenopus embryos, axolotl regeneration, and human mesenchymal cell differentiation

    PubMed Central

    Pai, Vaibhav P.; Martyniuk, Christopher J.; Echeverri, Karen; Sundelacruz, Sarah; Kaplan, David L.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Endogenous bioelectric signaling via changes in cellular resting potential (V mem) is a key regulator of patterning during regeneration and embryogenesis in numerous model systems. Depolarization of V mem has been functionally implicated in dedifferentiation, tumorigenesis, anatomical re‐specification, and appendage regeneration. However, no unbiased analyses have been performed to understand genome‐wide transcriptional responses to V mem change in vivo. Moreover, it is unknown which genes or gene networks represent conserved targets of bioelectrical signaling across different patterning contexts and species. Here, we use microarray analysis to comparatively analyze transcriptional responses to V mem depolarization. We compare the response of the transcriptome during embryogenesis (Xenopus development), regeneration (axolotl regeneration), and stem cell differentiation (human mesenchymal stem cells in culture) to identify common networks across model species that are associated with depolarization. Both subnetwork enrichment and PANTHER analyses identified a number of key genetic modules as targets of V mem change, and also revealed important (well‐conserved) commonalities in bioelectric signal transduction, despite highly diverse experimental contexts and species. Depolarization regulates specific transcriptional networks across all three germ layers (ectoderm, mesoderm, and endoderm) such as cell differentiation and apoptosis, and this information will be used for developing mechanistic models of bioelectric regulation of patterning. Moreover, our analysis reveals that V mem change regulates transcripts related to important disease pathways such as cancer and neurodegeneration, which may represent novel targets for emerging electroceutical therapies. PMID:27499876

  20. Proteomic analyses of human cytomegalovirus strain AD169 derivatives reveal highly conserved patterns of viral and cellular proteins in infected fibroblasts.

    PubMed

    Reyda, Sabine; Büscher, Nicole; Tenzer, Stefan; Plachter, Bodo

    2014-01-07

    Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) particle morphogenesis in infected cells is an orchestrated process that eventually results in the release of enveloped virions. Proteomic analysis has been employed to reveal the complexity in the protein composition of these extracellular particles. Only limited information is however available regarding the proteome of infected cells preceding the release of HCMV virions. We used quantitative mass spectrometry to address the pattern of viral and cellular proteins in cells, infected with derivatives of the AD169 laboratory strain. Our analyses revealed a remarkable conservation in the patterns of viral and of abundant cellular proteins in cells, infected for 2 hours, 2 days, or 4 days. Most viral proteins increased in abundance as the infection progressed over time. Of the proteins that were reliably detectable by mass spectrometry, only IE1 (pUL123), pTRS1, and pIRS1 were downregulated at 4 days after infection. In addition, little variation of viral proteins in the virions of the different viruses was detectable, independent of the expression of the major tegument protein pp65. Taken together these data suggest that there is little variation in the expression program of viral and cellular proteins in cells infected with related HCMVs, resulting in a conserved pattern of viral proteins ultimately associated with extracellular virions.

  1. Genome-wide analysis reveals conserved transcriptional responses downstream of resting potential change in Xenopus embryos, axolotl regeneration, and human mesenchymal cell differentiation.

    PubMed

    Pai, Vaibhav P; Martyniuk, Christopher J; Echeverri, Karen; Sundelacruz, Sarah; Kaplan, David L; Levin, Michael

    2016-02-01

    Endogenous bioelectric signaling via changes in cellular resting potential (V mem) is a key regulator of patterning during regeneration and embryogenesis in numerous model systems. Depolarization of V mem has been functionally implicated in dedifferentiation, tumorigenesis, anatomical re-specification, and appendage regeneration. However, no unbiased analyses have been performed to understand genome-wide transcriptional responses to V mem change in vivo. Moreover, it is unknown which genes or gene networks represent conserved targets of bioelectrical signaling across different patterning contexts and species. Here, we use microarray analysis to comparatively analyze transcriptional responses to V mem depolarization. We compare the response of the transcriptome during embryogenesis (Xenopus development), regeneration (axolotl regeneration), and stem cell differentiation (human mesenchymal stem cells in culture) to identify common networks across model species that are associated with depolarization. Both subnetwork enrichment and PANTHER analyses identified a number of key genetic modules as targets of V mem change, and also revealed important (well-conserved) commonalities in bioelectric signal transduction, despite highly diverse experimental contexts and species. Depolarization regulates specific transcriptional networks across all three germ layers (ectoderm, mesoderm, and endoderm) such as cell differentiation and apoptosis, and this information will be used for developing mechanistic models of bioelectric regulation of patterning. Moreover, our analysis reveals that V mem change regulates transcripts related to important disease pathways such as cancer and neurodegeneration, which may represent novel targets for emerging electroceutical therapies.

  2. The lunule of caligid copepods: an evolutionarily novel structure.

    PubMed

    Kaji, Tomonari; Venmathi Maran, B A; Kondoh, Yuusuke; Ohtsuka, Susumu; Boxshall, Geoff A; Tsukagoshi, Akira

    2012-01-01

    Nearly half of the genera of the family Caligidae possess an evolutionarily novel structure called the "lunule" on the ventral surface of the frontal plate. Lunules are paired cup-like suckers that assist in securing attachment of the copepod parasite to its host. Although present in genera such as Caligus and Pseudocaligus, lunules are absent in other caligid genera such as Lepeophtheirus as well as in more primitive caligiforms such as members of the families Trebiidae and Dissonidae. We compared the morphology and development of the anterior margin of the frontal plates between two caligids, Pseudocaligus fugu and Lepeophtheirus sekii, and a more basal caligiform, Dissonus heronensis (a dissonid), using scanning electron, transmission electron, and laser confocal microscopes. Our observations suggest that the lunules originated as a modification of the marginal membranes of the ancestral frontal plates. We also demonstrated the presence of an anlagen cell population for the lunule and marginal membrane in the developing frontal plate. These primordial cells can be detected as early as the first stage of the chalimus phase. Based on these observations, an evolutionary scenario for the lunule is proposed based on cytological evidence. This case study enhances our understanding of "evolutionary novelty," which is a main focus of contemporary evolutionary developmental biology.

  3. Evolutionarily Stable Strategies for Fecundity and Swimming Speed of Fish.

    PubMed

    Plank, Michael J; Pitchford, Jonathan W; James, Alex

    2016-02-01

    Many pelagic fish species have a life history that involves producing a large number of small eggs. This is the result of a trade-off between fecundity and larval survival probability. There are also trade-offs involving other traits, such as larval swimming speed. Swimming faster increases the average food encounter rate but also increases the metabolic cost. Here we introduce an evolutionary model comprising fecundity and swimming speed as heritable traits. We show that there can be two evolutionary stable strategies. In environments where there is little noise in the food encounter rate, the stable strategy is a low-fecundity strategy with a swimming speed that minimises the mean time taken to reach reproductive maturity. However, in noisy environments, for example where the prey distribution is patchy or the water is turbulent, strategies that optimise mean outcomes are often outperformed by strategies that increase inter-individual variance. We show that, when larval growth rates are unpredictable, a high-fecundity strategy is evolutionarily stable. In a population following this strategy, the swimming speed is higher than would be anticipated by maximising the mean growth rate.

  4. Retinoic acid expands the evolutionarily reduced dentition of zebrafish

    PubMed Central

    Seritrakul, Pawat; Samarut, Eric; Lama, Tenzing T. S.; Gibert, Yann; Laudet, Vincent; Jackman, William R.

    2012-01-01

    Zebrafish lost anterior teeth during evolution but retain a posterior pharyngeal dentition that requires retinoic acid (RA) cell-cell signaling for its development. The purposes of this study were to test the sufficiency of RA to induce tooth development and to assess its role in evolution. We found that exposure of embryos to exogenous RA induces a dramatic anterior expansion of the number of pharyngeal teeth that later form and shifts anteriorly the expression patterns of genes normally expressed in the posterior tooth-forming region, such as pitx2 and dlx2b. After RA exposure, we also observed a correlation between cartilage malformations and ectopic tooth induction, as well as abnormal cranial neural crest marker gene expression. Additionally, we observed that the RA-induced zebrafish anterior teeth resemble in pattern and number the dentition of fish species that retain anterior pharyngeal teeth such as medaka but that medaka do not express the aldh1a2 RA-synthesizing enzyme in tooth-forming regions. We conclude that RA is sufficient to induce anterior ectopic tooth development in zebrafish where teeth were lost in evolution, potentially by altering neural crest cell development, and that changes in the location of RA synthesis correlate with evolutionary changes in vertebrate dentitions.—Seritrakul, P., Samarut, E., Lama, T. T. S., Gibert, Y., Laudet, V., Jackman, W. R. Retinoic acid expands the evolutionarily reduced dentition of zebrafish. PMID:22942074

  5. Evolutionarily advanced ant farmers rear polyploid fungal crops.

    PubMed

    Kooij, P W; Aanen, D K; Schiøtt, M; Boomsma, J J

    2015-11-01

    Innovative evolutionary developments are often related to gene or genome duplications. The crop fungi of attine fungus-growing ants are suspected to have enhanced genetic variation reminiscent of polyploidy, but this has never been quantified with cytological data and genetic markers. We estimated the number of nuclei per fungal cell for 42 symbionts reared by 14 species of Panamanian fungus-growing ants. This showed that domesticated symbionts of higher attine ants are polykaryotic with 7-17 nuclei per cell, whereas nonspecialized crops of lower attines are dikaryotic similar to most free-living basidiomycete fungi. We then investigated how putative higher genetic diversity is distributed across polykaryotic mycelia, using microsatellite loci and evaluating models assuming that all nuclei are either heterogeneously haploid or homogeneously polyploid. Genetic variation in the polykaryotic symbionts of the basal higher attine genera Trachymyrmex and Sericomyrmex was only slightly enhanced, but the evolutionarily derived crop fungi of Atta and Acromyrmex leaf-cutting ants had much higher genetic variation. Our opposite ploidy models indicated that the symbionts of Trachymyrmex and Sericomyrmex are likely to be lowly and facultatively polyploid (just over two haplotypes on average), whereas Atta and Acromyrmex symbionts are highly and obligatorily polyploid (ca. 5-7 haplotypes on average). This stepwise transition appears analogous to ploidy variation in plants and fungi domesticated by humans and in fungi domesticated by termites and plants, where gene or genome duplications were typically associated with selection for higher productivity, but allopolyploid chimerism was incompatible with sexual reproduction.

  6. Comparative Study of Regulatory Circuits in Two Sea Urchin Species Reveals Tight Control of Timing and High Conservation of Expression Dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Gildor, Tsvia; Ben-Tabou de-Leon, Smadar

    2015-01-01

    Accurate temporal control of gene expression is essential for normal development and must be robust to natural genetic and environmental variation. Studying gene expression variation within and between related species can delineate the level of expression variability that development can tolerate. Here we exploit the comprehensive model of sea urchin gene regulatory networks and generate high-density expression profiles of key regulatory genes of the Mediterranean sea urchin, Paracentrotus lividus (Pl). The high resolution of our studies reveals highly reproducible gene initiation times that have lower variation than those of maximal mRNA levels between different individuals of the same species. This observation supports a threshold behavior of gene activation that is less sensitive to input concentrations. We then compare Mediterranean sea urchin gene expression profiles to those of its Pacific Ocean relative, Strongylocentrotus purpuratus (Sp). These species shared a common ancestor about 40 million years ago and show highly similar embryonic morphologies. Our comparative analyses of five regulatory circuits operating in different embryonic territories reveal a high conservation of the temporal order of gene activation but also some cases of divergence. A linear ratio of 1.3-fold between gene initiation times in Pl and Sp is partially explained by scaling of the developmental rates with temperature. Scaling the developmental rates according to the estimated Sp-Pl ratio and normalizing the expression levels reveals a striking conservation of relative dynamics of gene expression between the species. Overall, our findings demonstrate the ability of biological developmental systems to tightly control the timing of gene activation and relative dynamics and overcome expression noise induced by genetic variation and growth conditions. PMID:26230518

  7. Comparative Study of Regulatory Circuits in Two Sea Urchin Species Reveals Tight Control of Timing and High Conservation of Expression Dynamics.

    PubMed

    Gildor, Tsvia; Ben-Tabou de-Leon, Smadar

    2015-07-01

    Accurate temporal control of gene expression is essential for normal development and must be robust to natural genetic and environmental variation. Studying gene expression variation within and between related species can delineate the level of expression variability that development can tolerate. Here we exploit the comprehensive model of sea urchin gene regulatory networks and generate high-density expression profiles of key regulatory genes of the Mediterranean sea urchin, Paracentrotus lividus (Pl). The high resolution of our studies reveals highly reproducible gene initiation times that have lower variation than those of maximal mRNA levels between different individuals of the same species. This observation supports a threshold behavior of gene activation that is less sensitive to input concentrations. We then compare Mediterranean sea urchin gene expression profiles to those of its Pacific Ocean relative, Strongylocentrotus purpuratus (Sp). These species shared a common ancestor about 40 million years ago and show highly similar embryonic morphologies. Our comparative analyses of five regulatory circuits operating in different embryonic territories reveal a high conservation of the temporal order of gene activation but also some cases of divergence. A linear ratio of 1.3-fold between gene initiation times in Pl and Sp is partially explained by scaling of the developmental rates with temperature. Scaling the developmental rates according to the estimated Sp-Pl ratio and normalizing the expression levels reveals a striking conservation of relative dynamics of gene expression between the species. Overall, our findings demonstrate the ability of biological developmental systems to tightly control the timing of gene activation and relative dynamics and overcome expression noise induced by genetic variation and growth conditions.

  8. Phylogenetic Analysis of Conservation Priorities for Aquatic Mammals and Their Terrestrial Relatives, with a Comparison of Methods

    PubMed Central

    May-Collado, Laura J.; Agnarsson, Ingi

    2011-01-01

    Background Habitat loss and overexploitation are among the primary factors threatening populations of many mammal species. Recently, aquatic mammals have been highlighted as particularly vulnerable. Here we test (1) if aquatic mammals emerge as more phylogenetically urgent conservation priorities than their terrestrial relatives, and (2) if high priority species are receiving sufficient conservation effort. We also compare results among some phylogenetic conservation methods. Methodology/Principal Findings A phylogenetic analysis of conservation priorities for all 620 species of Cetartiodactyla and Carnivora, including most aquatic mammals. Conservation priority ranking of aquatic versus terrestrial species is approximately proportional to their diversity. However, nearly all obligated freshwater cetartiodactylans are among the top conservation priority species. Further, ∼74% and 40% of fully aquatic cetartiodactylans and carnivores, respectively, are either threatened or data deficient, more so than their terrestrial relatives. Strikingly, only 3% of all ‘high priority’ species are thought to be stable. An overwhelming 97% of these species thus either show decreasing population trends (87%) or are insufficiently known (10%). Furthermore, a disproportional number of highly evolutionarily distinct species are experiencing population decline, thus, such species should be closely monitored even if not currently threatened. Comparison among methods reveals that exact species ranking differs considerably among methods, nevertheless, most top priority species consistently rank high under any method. While we here favor one approach, we also suggest that a consensus approach may be useful when methods disagree. Conclusions/Significance These results reinforce prior findings, suggesting there is an urgent need to gather basic conservation data for aquatic mammals, and special conservation focus is needed on those confined to freshwater. That evolutionarily distinct

  9. Indigenous Knowledge and Science Unite to Reveal Spatial and Temporal Dimensions of Distributional Shift in Wildlife of Conservation Concern

    PubMed Central

    Service, Christina N.; Adams, Megan S.; Artelle, Kyle A.; Paquet, Paul; Grant, Laura V.; Darimont, Chris T.

    2014-01-01

    Range shifts among wildlife can occur rapidly and impose cascading ecological, economic, and cultural consequences. However, occurrence data used to define distributional limits derived from scientific approaches are often outdated for wide ranging and elusive species, especially in remote environments. Accordingly, our aim was to amalgamate indigenous and western scientific evidence of grizzly bear (Ursus arctos horribilis) records and detail a potential range shift on the central coast of British Columbia, Canada. In addition, we test the hypothesis that data from each method yield similar results, as well as illustrate the complementary nature of this coupled approach. Combining information from traditional and local ecological knowledge (TEK/LEK) interviews with remote camera, genetic, and hunting data revealed that grizzly bears are now present on 10 islands outside their current management boundary. LEK interview data suggested this expansion has accelerated over the last 10 years. Both approaches provided complementary details and primarily affirmed one another: all islands with scientific evidence for occupation had consistent TEK/LEK evidence. Moreover, our complementary methods approach enabled a more spatially and temporally detailed account than either method would have afforded alone. In many cases, knowledge already held by local indigenous people could provide timely and inexpensive data about changing ecological processes. However, verifying the accuracy of scientific and experiential knowledge by pairing sources at the same spatial scale allows for increased confidence and detail. A similarly coupled approach may be useful across taxa in many regions. PMID:25054635

  10. Indigenous knowledge and science unite to reveal spatial and temporal dimensions of distributional shift in wildlife of conservation concern.

    PubMed

    Service, Christina N; Adams, Megan S; Artelle, Kyle A; Paquet, Paul; Grant, Laura V; Darimont, Chris T

    2014-01-01

    Range shifts among wildlife can occur rapidly and impose cascading ecological, economic, and cultural consequences. However, occurrence data used to define distributional limits derived from scientific approaches are often outdated for wide ranging and elusive species, especially in remote environments. Accordingly, our aim was to amalgamate indigenous and western scientific evidence of grizzly bear (Ursus arctos horribilis) records and detail a potential range shift on the central coast of British Columbia, Canada. In addition, we test the hypothesis that data from each method yield similar results, as well as illustrate the complementary nature of this coupled approach. Combining information from traditional and local ecological knowledge (TEK/LEK) interviews with remote camera, genetic, and hunting data revealed that grizzly bears are now present on 10 islands outside their current management boundary. LEK interview data suggested this expansion has accelerated over the last 10 years. Both approaches provided complementary details and primarily affirmed one another: all islands with scientific evidence for occupation had consistent TEK/LEK evidence. Moreover, our complementary methods approach enabled a more spatially and temporally detailed account than either method would have afforded alone. In many cases, knowledge already held by local indigenous people could provide timely and inexpensive data about changing ecological processes. However, verifying the accuracy of scientific and experiential knowledge by pairing sources at the same spatial scale allows for increased confidence and detail. A similarly coupled approach may be useful across taxa in many regions.

  11. Structure/Function Analysis of Recurrent Mutations in SETD2 Protein Reveals a Critical and Conserved Role for a SET Domain Residue in Maintaining Protein Stability and Histone H3 Lys-36 Trimethylation.

    PubMed

    Hacker, Kathryn E; Fahey, Catherine C; Shinsky, Stephen A; Chiang, Yun-Chen J; DiFiore, Julia V; Jha, Deepak Kumar; Vo, Andy H; Shavit, Jordan A; Davis, Ian J; Strahl, Brian D; Rathmell, W Kimryn

    2016-09-30

    The yeast Set2 histone methyltransferase is a critical enzyme that plays a number of key roles in gene transcription and DNA repair. Recently, the human homologue, SETD2, was found to be recurrently mutated in a significant percentage of renal cell carcinomas, raising the possibility that the activity of SETD2 is tumor-suppressive. Using budding yeast and human cell line model systems, we examined the functional significance of two evolutionarily conserved residues in SETD2 that are recurrently mutated in human cancers. Whereas one of these mutations (R2510H), located in the Set2 Rpb1 interaction domain, did not result in an observable defect in SETD2 enzymatic function, a second mutation in the catalytic domain of this enzyme (R1625C) resulted in a complete loss of histone H3 Lys-36 trimethylation (H3K36me3). This mutant showed unchanged thermal stability as compared with the wild type protein but diminished binding to the histone H3 tail. Surprisingly, mutation of the conserved residue in Set2 (R195C) similarly resulted in a complete loss of H3K36me3 but did not affect dimethylated histone H3 Lys-36 (H3K36me2) or functions associated with H3K36me2 in yeast. Collectively, these data imply a critical role for Arg-1625 in maintaining the protein interaction with H3 and specific H3K36me3 function of this enzyme, which is conserved from yeast to humans. They also may provide a refined biochemical explanation for how H3K36me3 loss leads to genomic instability and cancer.

  12. Evolutionarily stable defence and signalling of that defence.

    PubMed

    Broom, M; Speed, M P; Ruxton, G D

    2006-09-07

    We examine the evolution and maintenance of defence and conspicuousness in prey species using a game theoretic model. In contrast to previous works, predators can raise as well as lower their attack probabilities as a consequence of encountering moderately defended prey. Our model predicts four distinct possibilities for evolutionarily stable strategies (ESSs) featuring maximum crypsis. Namely that such a solution can exist with (1) zero toxicity, (2) a non-zero but non-aversive level of toxicity, (3) a high, aversive level of toxicity or (4) that no such maximally cryptic solution exists. Maximally cryptic prey may still invest in toxins, because of the increased chance of surviving an attack (should they be discovered) that comes from having toxins. The toxin load of maximally cryptic prey may be sufficiently strong that the predators will find them aversive, and seek to avoid similar looking prey in future. However, this aversiveness does not always necessarily trigger aposematic signalling, and highly toxic prey can still be maximally cryptic, because the increased initial rate of attack from becoming more conspicuous is not necessarily always compensated for by increased avoidance of aversive prey by predators. In other circumstances, the optimal toxin load may be insufficient to generate aversion but still be non-zero (because it increases survival), and in yet other circumstances, it is optimal to make no investment in toxins at all. The model also predicts ESSs where the prey are highly defended and aversive and where this defence is advertised at a cost of increased conspicuousness to predators. In many circumstances there is an infinite array of these aposematic ESSs, where the precise appearance is unimportant as long as it is highly visible and shared by all members of the population. Yet another class of solutions is possible where there is strong between-individual variation in appearance between conspicuous, poorly defended prey.

  13. The genome and linkage map of the northern pike (Esox lucius): conserved synteny revealed between the salmonid sister group and the Neoteleostei.

    PubMed

    Rondeau, Eric B; Minkley, David R; Leong, Jong S; Messmer, Amber M; Jantzen, Johanna R; von Schalburg, Kristian R; Lemon, Craig; Bird, Nathan H; Koop, Ben F

    2014-01-01

    The northern pike is the most frequently studied member of the Esociformes, the closest order to the diverse and economically important Salmoniformes. The ancestor of all salmonids purportedly experienced a whole-genome duplication (WGD) event, making salmonid species ideal for studying the early impacts of genome duplication while complicating their use in wider analyses of teleost evolution. Studies suggest that the Esociformes diverged from the salmonid lineage prior to the WGD, supporting the use of northern pike as a pre-duplication outgroup. Here we present the first genome assembly, reference transcriptome and linkage map for northern pike, and evaluate the suitability of this species to provide a representative pre-duplication genome for future studies of salmonid and teleost evolution. The northern pike genome sequence is composed of 94,267 contigs (N50 = 16,909 bp) contained in 5,688 scaffolds (N50 = 700,535 bp); the total scaffolded genome size is 878 million bases. Multiple lines of evidence suggest that over 96% of the protein-coding genome is present in the genome assembly. The reference transcriptome was constructed from 13 tissues and contains 38,696 transcripts, which are accompanied by normalized expression data in all tissues. Gene-prediction analysis produced a total of 19,601 northern pike-specific gene models. The first-generation linkage map identifies 25 linkage groups, in agreement with northern pike's diploid karyotype of 2N = 50, and facilitates the placement of 46% of assembled bases onto linkage groups. Analyses reveal a high degree of conserved synteny between northern pike and other model teleost genomes. While conservation of gene order is limited to smaller syntenic blocks, the wider conservation of genome organization implies the northern pike exhibits a suitable approximation of a non-duplicated Protacanthopterygiian genome. This dataset will facilitate future studies of esocid biology and empower ongoing examinations of the

  14. Hospital and Community Ampicillin-Resistant Enterococcus faecium Are Evolutionarily Closely Linked but Have Diversified through Niche Adaptation

    PubMed Central

    de Regt, Marieke J. A.; van Schaik, Willem; van Luit-Asbroek, Miranda; Dekker, Huberta A. T.; van Duijkeren, Engeline; Koning, Catherina J. M.; Bonten, Marc J. M.; Willems, Rob J. L.

    2012-01-01

    Background Ampicillin-resistant Enterococcus faecium (ARE) has emerged as a nosocomial pathogen. Here, we quantified ARE carriage in different community sources and determined genetic relatedness with hospital ARE. Methods and Results ARE was recovered from rectal swabs of 24 of 79 (30%) dogs, 11 of 85 (13%) cats and 0 of 42 horses and from 3 of 40 (8%) faecal samples of non-hospitalized humans receiving amoxicillin. Multi-locus Sequence Typing revealed 21 sequence types (STs), including 5 STs frequently associated with hospital-acquired infections. Genes previously found to be enriched in hospital ARE, such as IS16, orf903, orf905, orf907, were highly prevalent in community ARE (≥79%), while genes with a proposed role in pathogenesis, such as esp, hyl and ecbA, were found rarely (≤5%) in community isolates. Comparative genome analysis of 2 representative dog isolates revealed that the dog strain of ST192 was evolutionarily closely linked to two previously sequenced hospital ARE, but had, based on gene content, more genes in common with the other, evolutionarily more distantly related, dog strain (ST266). Conclusion ARE were detected in dogs, cats and sporadically in healthy humans, with evolutionary linkage to hospital ARE. Yet, their accessory genome has diversified, probably as a result of niche adaptation. PMID:22363425

  15. Cloning of SEC61 homologues from Schizosaccharomyces pombe and Yarrowia lipolytica reveals the extent of functional conservation within this core component of the ER translocation machinery.

    PubMed

    Broughton, J; Swennen, D; Wilkinson, B M; Joyet, P; Gaillardin, C; Stirling, C J

    1997-11-01

    The Sec61 protein is required for protein translocation across the ER membrane in both yeast and mammals and is found in close association with polypeptides during their membrane transit. In Saccharomyces cerevisiae Sec61p is essential for viability and the extent of sequence similarity between the yeast and mammalian proteins (55% sequence identity) suggests that the role of Sec61p in the translocation mechanism is likely to be conserved. In order to further our understanding of the structure and function of Sec61p we have cloned homologues from both Schizosaccharomyces pombe and Yarrowia lipolytica. The S. pombe gene comprises six exons encoding a 479 residue protein which we have immunolocalised to the endoplasmic reticulum. Sequence comparisons reveal that S. pombe Sec61p is 58.6% identical to that of S. cerevisiae. The deduced amino acid sequence of the Y. lipolytica protein shares 68.8% sequence identity with S. cerevisiae Sec61p. Gene disruption studies have shown that the SEC61 is required for viability in both S. pombe and Y. lipolytica demonstrating that the essential nature of this protein is not unique to S. cerevisiae. Moreover, heterologous complementation studies indicate that the Y. lipolytica SEC61 gene can complement a null mutation in S. cerevisiae. Sequence comparisons between the various eukaryotic Sec61p homologues reveal a number of highly conserved domains, including several transmembrane sequences and the majority of cytosolic loops. These comparisons will provide an important framework for the detailed analysis of interactions between Sec61p and other components of the translocation machinery and between Sec61p and translocating polypeptide chains.

  16. Conservation in the mechanism of glucuronoxylan hydrolysis revealed by the structure of glucuronoxylan xylanohydrolase (CtXyn30A) from Clostridium thermocellum.

    PubMed

    Freire, Filipe; Verma, Anil; Bule, Pedro; Alves, Victor D; Fontes, Carlos M G A; Goyal, Arun; Najmudin, Shabir

    2016-11-01

    Glucuronoxylan endo-β-1,4-xylanases cleave the xylan chain specifically at sites containing 4-O-methylglucuronic acid substitutions. These enzymes have recently received considerable attention owing to their importance in the cooperative hydrolysis of heteropolysaccharides. However, little is known about the hydrolysis of glucuronoxylans in extreme environments. Here, the structure of a thermostable family 30 glucuronoxylan endo-β-1,4-xylanase (CtXyn30A) from Clostridium thermocellum is reported. CtXyn30A is part of the cellulosome, a highly elaborate multi-enzyme complex secreted by the bacterium to efficiently deconstruct plant cell-wall carbohydrates. CtXyn30A preferably hydrolyses glucuronoxylans and displays maximum activity at pH 6.0 and 70°C. The structure of CtXyn30A displays a (β/α)8 TIM-barrel core with a side-associated β-sheet domain. Structural analysis of the CtXyn30A mutant E225A, solved in the presence of xylotetraose, revealed xylotetraose-cleavage oligosaccharides partially occupying subsites -3 to +2. The sugar ring at the +1 subsite is held in place by hydrophobic stacking interactions between Tyr139 and Tyr200 and hydrogen bonds to the OH group of Tyr227. Although family 30 glycoside hydrolases are retaining enzymes, the xylopyranosyl ring at the -1 subsite of CtXyn30A-E225A appears in the α-anomeric configuration. A set of residues were found to be strictly conserved in glucuronoxylan endo-β-1,4-xylanases and constitute the molecular determinants of the restricted specificity displayed by these enzymes. CtXyn30A is the first thermostable glucuronoxylan endo-β-1,4-xylanase described to date. This work reveals that substrate recognition by both thermophilic and mesophilic glucuronoxylan endo-β-1,4-xylanases is modulated by a conserved set of residues.

  17. The Crystal Structure of the Extracellular 11-heme Cytochrome UndA Reveals a Conserved 10-heme Motif and Defined Binding Site for Soluble Iron Chelates.

    SciTech Connect

    Edwards, Marcus; Hall, Andrea; Shi, Liang; Fredrickson, Jim K.; Zachara, John M.; Butt, Julea N.; Richardson, David; Clarke, Thomas A.

    2012-07-03

    Members of the genus Shewanella translocate deca- or undeca-heme cytochromes to the external cell surface thus enabling respiration using extracellular minerals and polynuclear Fe(III) chelates. The high resolution structure of the first undeca-heme outer membrane cytochrome, UndA, reveals a crossed heme chain with four potential electron ingress/egress sites arranged within four domains. Sequence and structural alignment of UndA and the deca-heme MtrF reveals the extra heme of UndA is inserted between MtrF hemes 6 and 7. The remaining UndA hemes can be superposed over the heme chain of the decaheme MtrF, suggesting that a ten heme core is conserved between outer membrane cytochromes. The UndA structure is the first outer membrane cytochrome to be crystallographically resolved in complex with substrates, an Fe(III)-nitrilotriacetate dimer or an Fe(III)-citrate trimer. The structural resolution of these UndA-Fe(III)-chelate complexes provides a rationale for previous kinetic measurements on UndA and other outer membrane cytochromes.

  18. Shape-shifting corals: Molecular markers show morphology is evolutionarily plastic in Porites

    PubMed Central

    Forsman, Zac H; Barshis, Daniel J; Hunter, Cynthia L; Toonen, Robert J

    2009-01-01

    Background Corals are notoriously difficult to identify at the species-level due to few diagnostic characters and variable skeletal morphology. This 'coral species problem' is an impediment to understanding the evolution and biodiversity of this important and threatened group of organisms. We examined the evolution of the nuclear ribosomal internal transcribed spacer (ITS) and mitochondrial markers (COI, putative control region) in Porites, one of the most taxonomically challenging and ecologically important genera of reef-building corals. Results Nuclear and mitochondrial markers were congruent, clearly resolving many traditionally recognized species; however, branching and mounding varieties were genetically indistinguishable within at least two clades, and specimens matching the description of 'Porites lutea' sorted into three genetically divergent groups. Corallite-level features were generally concordant with genetic groups, although hyper-variability in one group (Clade I) overlapped and obscured several others, and Synarea (previously thought to be a separate subgenus) was closely related to congeners despite its unique morphology. Scanning electron microscopy revealed subtle differences between genetic groups that may have been overlooked previously as taxonomic characters. Conclusion This study demonstrates that the coral skeleton can be remarkably evolutionarily plastic, which may explain some taxonomic difficulties, and obscure underlying patterns of endemism and diversity. PMID:19239678

  19. Genetic differentiation and selection against migrants in evolutionarily replicated extreme environments.

    PubMed

    Plath, Martin; Pfenninger, Markus; Lerp, Hannes; Riesch, Rüdiger; Eschenbrenner, Christoph; Slattery, Patrick A; Bierbach, David; Herrmann, Nina; Schulte, Matthias; Arias-Rodriguez, Lenin; Rimber Indy, Jeane; Passow, Courtney; Tobler, Michael

    2013-09-01

    We investigated mechanisms of reproductive isolation in livebearing fishes (genus Poecilia) inhabiting sulfidic and nonsulfidic habitats in three replicate river drainages. Although sulfide spring fish convergently evolved divergent phenotypes, it was unclear if mechanisms of reproductive isolation also evolved convergently. Using microsatellites, we found strongly reduced gene flow between adjacent populations from different habitat types, suggesting that local adaptation to sulfidic habitats repeatedly caused the emergence of reproductive isolation. Reciprocal translocation experiments indicate strong selection against immigrants into sulfidic waters, but also variation among drainages in the strength of selection against immigrants into nonsulfidic waters. Mate choice experiments revealed the evolution of assortative mating preferences in females from nonsulfidic but not from sulfidic habitats. The inferred strength of sexual selection against immigrants (RI(s)) was negatively correlated with the strength of natural selection (RI(m)), a pattern that could be attributed to reinforcement, whereby natural selection strengthens behavioral isolation due to reduced hybrid fitness. Overall, reproductive isolation and genetic differentiation appear to be replicated and direct consequences of local adaptation to sulfide spring environments, but the relative contributions of different mechanisms of reproductive isolation vary across these evolutionarily independent replicates, highlighting both convergent and nonconvergent evolutionary trajectories of populations in each drainage.

  20. From Amazonia to the Atlantic forest: molecular phylogeny of Phyzelaphryninae frogs reveals unexpected diversity and a striking biogeographic pattern emphasizing conservation challenges.

    PubMed

    Fouquet, Antoine; Loebmann, Daniel; Castroviejo-Fisher, Santiago; Padial, José M; Orrico, Victor G D; Lyra, Mariana L; Roberto, Igor Joventino; Kok, Philippe J R; Haddad, Célio F B; Rodrigues, Miguel T

    2012-11-01

    Documenting the Neotropical amphibian diversity has become a major challenge facing the threat of global climate change and the pace of environmental alteration. Recent molecular phylogenetic studies have revealed that the actual number of species in South American tropical forests is largely underestimated, but also that many lineages are millions of years old. The genera Phyzelaphryne (1 sp.) and Adelophryne (6 spp.), which compose the subfamily Phyzelaphryninae, include poorly documented, secretive, and minute frogs with an unusual distribution pattern that encompasses the biotic disjunction between Amazonia and the Atlantic forest. We generated >5.8 kb sequence data from six markers for all seven nominal species of the subfamily as well as for newly discovered populations in order to (1) test the monophyly of Phyzelaphryninae, Adelophryne and Phyzelaphryne, (2) estimate species diversity within the subfamily, and (3) investigate their historical biogeography and diversification. Phylogenetic reconstruction confirmed the monophyly of each group and revealed deep subdivisions within Adelophryne and Phyzelaphryne, with three major clades in Adelophryne located in northern Amazonia, northern Atlantic forest and southern Atlantic forest. Our results suggest that the actual number of species in Phyzelaphryninae is, at least, twice the currently recognized species diversity, with almost every geographically isolated population representing an anciently divergent candidate species. Such results highlight the challenges for conservation, especially in the northern Atlantic forest where it is still degraded at a fast pace. Molecular dating revealed that Phyzelaphryninae originated in Amazonia and dispersed during early Miocene to the Atlantic forest. The two Atlantic forest clades of Adelophryne started to diversify some 7 Ma minimum, while the northern Amazonian Adelophryne diversified much earlier, some 13 Ma minimum. This striking biogeographic pattern coincides with

  1. A comparative transcriptome analysis reveals expression profiles conserved across three Eimeria spp. of domestic fowl and associated with multiple developmental stages.

    PubMed

    Novaes, Jeniffer; Rangel, Luiz Thibério L D; Ferro, Milene; Abe, Ricardo Y; Manha, Alessandra P S; de Mello, Joana C M; Varuzza, Leonardo; Durham, Alan M; Madeira, Alda Maria B N; Gruber, Arthur

    2012-01-01

    Coccidiosis of the domestic fowl is a worldwide disease caused by seven species of protozoan parasites of the genus Eimeria. The genome of the model species, Eimeria tenella, presents a complexity of 55-60MB distributed in 14 chromosomes. Relatively few studies have been undertaken to unravel the complexity of the transcriptome of Eimeria parasites. We report here the generation of more than 45,000 open reading frame expressed sequence tag (ORESTES) cDNA reads of E. tenella, Eimeria maxima and Eimeria acervulina, covering several developmental stages: unsporulated oocysts, sporoblastic oocysts, sporulated oocysts, sporozoites and second generation merozoites. All reads were assembled to constitute gene indices and submitted to a comprehensive functional annotation pipeline. In the case of E. tenella, we also incorporated publicly available ESTs to generate an integrated body of information. Orthology analyses have identified genes conserved across different apicomplexan parasites, as well as genes restricted to the genus Eimeria. Digital expression profiles obtained from ORESTES/EST countings, submitted to clustering analyses, revealed a high conservation pattern across the three Eimeria spp. Distance trees showed that unsporulated and sporoblastic oocysts constitute a distinct clade in all species, with sporulated oocysts forming a more external branch. This latter stage also shows a close relationship with sporozoites, whereas first and second generation merozoites are more closely related to each other than to sporozoites. The profiles were unambiguously associated with the distinct developmental stages and strongly correlated with the order of the stages in the parasite life cycle. Finally, we present The Eimeria Transcript Database (http://www.coccidia.icb.usp.br/eimeriatdb), a website that provides open access to all sequencing data, annotation and comparative analysis. We expect this repository to represent a useful resource to the Eimeria scientific

  2. The Genome and Linkage Map of the Northern Pike (Esox lucius): Conserved Synteny Revealed between the Salmonid Sister Group and the Neoteleostei

    PubMed Central

    Rondeau, Eric B.; Minkley, David R.; Leong, Jong S.; Messmer, Amber M.; Jantzen, Johanna R.; von Schalburg, Kristian R.; Lemon, Craig; Bird, Nathan H.; Koop, Ben F.

    2014-01-01

    The northern pike is the most frequently studied member of the Esociformes, the closest order to the diverse and economically important Salmoniformes. The ancestor of all salmonids purportedly experienced a whole-genome duplication (WGD) event, making salmonid species ideal for studying the early impacts of genome duplication while complicating their use in wider analyses of teleost evolution. Studies suggest that the Esociformes diverged from the salmonid lineage prior to the WGD, supporting the use of northern pike as a pre-duplication outgroup. Here we present the first genome assembly, reference transcriptome and linkage map for northern pike, and evaluate the suitability of this species to provide a representative pre-duplication genome for future studies of salmonid and teleost evolution. The northern pike genome sequence is composed of 94,267 contigs (N50 = 16,909 bp) contained in 5,688 scaffolds (N50 = 700,535 bp); the total scaffolded genome size is 878 million bases. Multiple lines of evidence suggest that over 96% of the protein-coding genome is present in the genome assembly. The reference transcriptome was constructed from 13 tissues and contains 38,696 transcripts, which are accompanied by normalized expression data in all tissues. Gene-prediction analysis produced a total of 19,601 northern pike-specific gene models. The first-generation linkage map identifies 25 linkage groups, in agreement with northern pike's diploid karyotype of 2N = 50, and facilitates the placement of 46% of assembled bases onto linkage groups. Analyses reveal a high degree of conserved synteny between northern pike and other model teleost genomes. While conservation of gene order is limited to smaller syntenic blocks, the wider conservation of genome organization implies the northern pike exhibits a suitable approximation of a non-duplicated Protacanthopterygiian genome. This dataset will facilitate future studies of esocid biology and empower ongoing examinations

  3. A Conserved Motif within RAP1 Plays Diversified Roles in Telomere Protection and Regulation in Different Organisms

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yong; Rai, Rekha; Zhou, Zi-Ren; Kanoh, Junko; Ribeyre, Cyril; Yang, Yuting; Zheng, Hong; Damay, Pascal; Wang, Feng; Tsujii, Hisayo; Hiraoka, Yasushi; Shore, David; Hu, Hong-Yu; Chang, Sandy; Lei, Ming

    2013-01-01

    Repressor activator protein 1 (RAP1) is the most highly conserved telomere protein. It is involved in protecting chromosome ends in fission yeast, promoting gene silencing in Saccharomyces cerevisiae while in Kluyveromyces lactis it is required to repress homology directed recombination (HDR) at telomeres. Since mammalian RAP1 requires TRF2 for stable expression, its role in telomere function has remained obscure. To understand how RAP1 plays such diverse functions at telomeres, we solved the crystal or solution structures of the C-terminal RCT domains of RAP1 from multiple organisms in complex with their respective protein-binding partners. Our comparative structural analysis establishes the RCT domain of RAP1 as an evolutionarily conserved protein-protein interaction module. In mammalian and fission yeast cells, this module interacts with TRF2 and Taz1, respectively, targeting RAP1 to chromosome ends for telomere end protection. While RAP1 repress NHEJ at fission yeast telomeres, at mammalian telomeres it is required to repress HDR. In contrast, S. cerevisiae RAP1 utilizes the RCT domain to recruit Sir3 to telomeres to mediate gene silencing. Together, our results reveal that depending on the organism, the evolutionarily conserved RAP1 RCT motif plays diverse functional roles at telomeres. PMID:21217703

  4. Conservation of the Nrf2-Mediated Gene Regulation of Proteasome Subunits and Glucose Metabolism in Zebrafish

    PubMed Central

    Fuse, Yuji; Tamaoki, Junya; Akiyama, Shin-ichi; Muratani, Masafumi

    2016-01-01

    The Keap1-Nrf2 system is an evolutionarily conserved defense mechanism against oxidative and xenobiotic stress. Besides the exogenous stress response, Nrf2 has been found to regulate numerous cellular functions, including protein turnover and glucose metabolism; however, the evolutionary origins of these functions remain unknown. In the present study, we searched for novel target genes associated with the zebrafish Nrf2 to answer this question. A microarray analysis of zebrafish embryos that overexpressed Nrf2 revealed that 115 candidate genes were targets of Nrf2, including genes encoding proteasome subunits and enzymes involved in glucose metabolism. A real-time quantitative PCR suggested that the expression of 3 proteasome subunits (psma3, psma5, and psmb7) and 2 enzymes involved in glucose metabolism (pgd and fbp1a) were regulated by zebrafish Nrf2. We thus next examined the upregulation of these genes by an Nrf2 activator, diethyl maleate, using Nrf2 mutant zebrafish larvae. The results of real-time quantitative PCR and whole-mount in situ hybridization showed that all of these 5 genes were upregulated by diethyl maleate treatment in an Nrf2-dependent manner, especially in the liver. These findings implied that the Nrf2-mediated regulation of the proteasome subunits and glucose metabolism is evolutionarily conserved among vertebrates. PMID:28116036

  5. Iodothyronine deiodinase gene analysis of the Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas reveals possible conservation of thyroid hormone feedback regulation mechanism in mollusks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Wen; Xu, Fei; Qu, Tao; Li, Li; Que, Huayong; Zhang, Guofan

    2015-07-01

    Iodothyronine deiodinase catalyzes the initiation and termination of thyroid hormones (THs) effects, and plays a central role in the regulation of thyroid hormone level in vertebrates. In non-chordate invertebrates, only one deiodinase has been identified in the scallop Chlamys farreri. Here, two deiodinases were cloned in the Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas ( CgDx and CgDy). The characteristic in-frame TGA codons and selenocysteine insertion sequence elements in the oyster deiodinase cDNAs supported the activity of them. Furthermore, seven orthologs of deiodinases were found by a tblastn search in the mollusk Lottia gigantea and the annelid Capitella teleta. A phylogenetic analysis revealed that the deiodinase gene originated from an common ancestor and a clade-specific gene duplication occurred independently during the differentiation of the mollusk, annelid, and vertebrate lineages. The distinct spatiotemporal expression patterns implied functional divergence of the two deiodinases. The expression of CgDx and CgDy was influenced by L-thyroxine T4, and putative thyroid hormone responsive elements were found in their promoters, which suggested that the oyster deiodinases were feedback regulated by TH. Epinephrine stimulated the expression level of CgDx and CgDy, suggesting an interaction effect between different hormones. This study provides the first evidence for the existence of a conserved TH feedback regulation mechanism in mollusks, providing insights into TH evolution.

  6. Structure of the Brd4 ET domain bound to a C-terminal motif from γ-retroviral integrases reveals a conserved mechanism of interaction.

    PubMed

    Crowe, Brandon L; Larue, Ross C; Yuan, Chunhua; Hess, Sonja; Kvaratskhelia, Mamuka; Foster, Mark P

    2016-02-23

    The bromodomain and extraterminal domain (BET) protein family are promising therapeutic targets for a range of diseases linked to transcriptional activation, cancer, viral latency, and viral integration. Tandem bromodomains selectively tether BET proteins to chromatin by engaging cognate acetylated histone marks, and the extraterminal (ET) domain is the focal point for recruiting a range of cellular and viral proteins. BET proteins guide γ-retroviral integration to transcription start sites and enhancers through bimodal interaction with chromatin and the γ-retroviral integrase (IN). We report the NMR-derived solution structure of the Brd4 ET domain bound to a conserved peptide sequence from the C terminus of murine leukemia virus (MLV) IN. The complex reveals a protein-protein interaction governed by the binding-coupled folding of disordered regions in both interacting partners to form a well-structured intermolecular three-stranded β sheet. In addition, we show that a peptide comprising the ET binding motif (EBM) of MLV IN can disrupt the cognate interaction of Brd4 with NSD3, and that substitutions of Brd4 ET residues essential for binding MLV IN also impair interaction of Brd4 with a number of cellular partners involved in transcriptional regulation and chromatin remodeling. This suggests that γ-retroviruses have evolved the EBM to mimic a cognate interaction motif to achieve effective integration in host chromatin. Collectively, our findings identify key structural features of the ET domain of Brd4 that allow for interactions with both cellular and viral proteins.

  7. Next-generation freshwater bioassessment: eDNA metabarcoding with a conserved metazoan primer reveals species-rich and reservoir-specific communities

    PubMed Central

    Tay, Ywee Chieh; Srivathsan, Amrita; Tan, Jonathan W. T.; Kwik, Jeffrey T. B.; Baloğlu, Bilgenur; Yeo, Darren C. J.

    2016-01-01

    Freshwater habitats are of high conservation value and provide a wide range of ecosystem services. Effective management requires regular monitoring. However, conventional methods based on direct observation or specimen collection are so invasive, expensive and labour-intensive that frequent monitoring is uncommon. Here, we test whether the evaluation of environmental DNA (eDNA) from water based on a simple protocol can be used for assessing biodiversity. We use universal metazoan primers for characterizing water eDNA across horizontal and vertical spatial dimensions in two reservoirs with known species diversity for two key taxa. eDNA obtained directly from 42 samples × 15 ml water (total = 630 ml) per reservoir yielded DNA signatures for more than 500 metazoan species, of which 105 could be identified to species/genus based on DNA barcodes. We show that eDNA can be used to assign each water sample to its reservoir of origin, and that eDNA outperforms conventional survey methods in single-sample richness comparisons, while revealing evidence for hundreds of unknown species that are undetected by conventional bioassessment methods. eDNA also confirms the presence of a recently discovered invasive snail species and provides evidence for the continued survival of a rare native species of goby not sighted in that habitat since 2007. eDNA thus promises to be a useful addition to the bioassessment toolbox for freshwater systems. PMID:28018653

  8. Sperm DNA methylation analysis in swine reveals conserved and species-specific methylation patterns and highlights an altered methylation at the GNAS locus in infertile boars.

    PubMed

    Congras, Annabelle; Yerle-Bouissou, Martine; Pinton, Alain; Vignoles, Florence; Liaubet, Laurence; Ferchaud, Stéphane; Acloque, Hervé

    2014-12-01

    Male infertility is an increasing health issue in today's society for both human and livestock populations. In livestock, male infertility slows the improvement of animal selection programs and agricultural productivity. There is increasing evidence that epigenetic marks play an important role in the production of good-quality sperm. We therefore screened for specific or common epigenetic signatures of livestock infertility. To do so, we compared DNA methylation level in sperm DNA from fertile and infertile boars. We evaluated first the global level of sperm DNA methylation and found no difference between the two groups of boars. We then selected 42 loci of interest, most of them known to be imprinted in human or mice, and assessed the imprinting status of five of them not previously described in swine tissues: WT1, CNTN3, IMPACT, QPCT, and GRB10. DNA methylation level was then quantified in fertile and infertile boars at these 42 loci. Results from fertile boars indicated that the methylation level of the selected loci is highly conserved between pig, human, and mice, with a few exceptions, including the POU5F1 (OCT4) promoter and RTL1. Comparison between fertile and infertile boars revealed that one imprinted region, the GNAS locus, shows an increase in sperm DNA methylation in three out of eight infertile boars with low semen quality. This increase in DNA methylation is associated with an altered expression of the genes belonging to the GNAS locus, suggesting a new role for GNAS in the proper formation of functional gametes.

  9. Complete molecular genome analyses of equine rotavirus A strains from different continents reveal several novel genotypes and a largely conserved genotype constellation.

    PubMed

    Matthijnssens, Jelle; Miño, Samuel; Papp, Hajnalka; Potgieter, Christiaan; Novo, Luis; Heylen, Elisabeth; Zeller, Mark; Garaicoechea, Lorena; Badaracco, Alejandra; Lengyel, György; Kisfali, Péter; Cullinane, Ann; Collins, P J; Ciarlet, Max; O'Shea, Helen; Parreño, Viviana; Bányai, Krisztián; Barrandeguy, María; Van Ranst, Marc

    2012-04-01

    In this study, the complete genome sequences of seven equine group A rotavirus (RVA) strains (RVA/Horse-tc/GBR/L338/1991/G13P[18], RVA/Horse-wt/IRL/03V04954/2003/G3P[12] and RVA/Horse-wt/IRL/04V2024/2004/G14P[12] from Europe; RVA/Horse-wt/ARG/E30/1993/G3P[12], RVA/Horse-wt/ARG/E403/2006/G14P[12] and RVA/Horse-wt/ARG/E4040/2008/G14P[12] from Argentina; and RVA/Horse-wt/ZAF/EqRV-SA1/2006/G14P[12] from South Africa) were determined. Multiple novel genotypes were identified and genotype numbers were assigned by the Rotavirus Classification Working Group: R9 (VP1), C9 (VP2), N9 (NSP2), T12 (NSP3), E14 (NSP4), and H7 and H11 (NSP5). The genotype constellation of L338 was unique: G13-P[18]-I6-R9-C9-M6-A6-N9-T12-E14-H11. The six remaining equine RVA strains showed a largely conserved genotype constellation: G3/G14-P[12]-I2/I6-R2-C2-M3-A10-N2-T3-E2/E12-H7, which is highly divergent from other known non-equine RVA genotype constellations. Phylogenetic analyses revealed that the sequences of these equine RVA strains are related distantly to non-equine RVA strains, and that at least three lineages exist within equine RVA strains. A small number of reassortment events were observed. Interestingly, the three RVA strains from Argentina possessed the E12 genotype, whereas the three RVA strains from Ireland and South Africa possessed the E2 genotype. The unusual E12 genotype has until now only been described in Argentina among RVA strains collected from guanaco, cattle and horses, suggesting geographical isolation of this NSP4 genotype. This conserved genetic configuration of equine RVA strains could be useful for future vaccine development or improvement of currently used equine RVA vaccines.

  10. Identifying all moiety conservation laws in genome-scale metabolic networks.

    PubMed

    De Martino, Andrea; De Martino, Daniele; Mulet, Roberto; Pagnani, Andrea

    2014-01-01

    The stoichiometry of a metabolic network gives rise to a set of conservation laws for the aggregate level of specific pools of metabolites, which, on one hand, pose dynamical constraints that cross-link the variations of metabolite concentrations and, on the other, provide key insight into a cell's metabolic production capabilities. When the conserved quantity identifies with a chemical moiety, extracting all such conservation laws from the stoichiometry amounts to finding all non-negative integer solutions of a linear system, a programming problem known to be NP-hard. We present an efficient strategy to compute the complete set of integer conservation laws of a genome-scale stoichiometric matrix, also providing a certificate for correctness and maximality of the solution. Our method is deployed for the analysis of moiety conservation relationships in two large-scale reconstructions of the metabolism of the bacterium E. coli, in six tissue-specific human metabolic networks, and, finally, in the human reactome as a whole, revealing that bacterial metabolism could be evolutionarily designed to cover broader production spectra than human metabolism. Convergence to the full set of moiety conservation laws in each case is achieved in extremely reduced computing times. In addition, we uncover a scaling relation that links the size of the independent pool basis to the number of metabolites, for which we present an analytical explanation.

  11. Evolutionary comparison reveals that diverging CTCF sites are signatures of ancestral topological associating domains borders

    PubMed Central

    Gómez-Marín, Carlos; Tena, Juan J.; Acemel, Rafael D.; López-Mayorga, Macarena; Naranjo, Silvia; de la Calle-Mustienes, Elisa; Maeso, Ignacio; Beccari, Leonardo; Aneas, Ivy; Vielmas, Erika; Bovolenta, Paola; Nobrega, Marcelo A.; Carvajal, Jaime; Gómez-Skarmeta, José Luis

    2015-01-01

    Increasing evidence in the last years indicates that the vast amount of regulatory information contained in mammalian genomes is organized in precise 3D chromatin structures. However, the impact of this spatial chromatin organization on gene expression and its degree of evolutionary conservation is still poorly understood. The Six homeobox genes are essential developmental regulators organized in gene clusters conserved during evolution. Here, we reveal that the Six clusters share a deeply evolutionarily conserved 3D chromatin organization that predates the Cambrian explosion. This chromatin architecture generates two largely independent regulatory landscapes (RLs) contained in two adjacent topological associating domains (TADs). By disrupting the conserved TAD border in one of the zebrafish Six clusters, we demonstrate that this border is critical for preventing competition between promoters and enhancers located in separated RLs, thereby generating different expression patterns in genes located in close genomic proximity. Moreover, evolutionary comparison of Six-associated TAD borders reveals the presence of CCCTC-binding factor (CTCF) sites with diverging orientations in all studied deuterostomes. Genome-wide examination of mammalian HiC data reveals that this conserved CTCF configuration is a general signature of TAD borders, underscoring that common organizational principles underlie TAD compartmentalization in deuterostome evolution. PMID:26034287

  12. A nuclear DNA perspective on delineating evolutionarily significant lineages in polyploids: the case of the endangered shortnose sturgeon (Acipenser brevirostrum)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    King, Timothy L.; Henderson, Anne P.; Kynard, Boyd E.; Kieffer, Micah C.; Peterson, Douglas L.; Aunins, Aaron W.; Brown, Bonnie L.

    2014-01-01

    The shortnose sturgeon, Acipenser brevirostrum, oft considered a phylogenetic relic, is listed as an “endangered species threatened with extinction” in the US and “Vulnerable” on the IUCN Red List. Effective conservation of A. brevirostrum depends on understanding its diversity and evolutionary processes, yet challenges associated with the polyploid nature of its nuclear genome have heretofore limited population genetic analysis to maternally inherited haploid characters. We developed a suite of polysomic microsatellite DNA markers and characterized a sample of 561 shortnose sturgeon collected from major extant populations along the North American Atlantic coast. The 181 alleles observed at 11 loci were scored as binary loci and the data were subjected to multivariate ordination, Bayesian clustering, hierarchical partitioning of variance, and among-population distance metric tests. The methods uncovered moderately high levels of gene diversity suggesting population structuring across and within three metapopulations (Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, and Southeast) that encompass seven demographically discrete and evolutionarily distinct lineages. The predicted groups are consistent with previously described behavioral patterns, especially dispersal and migration, supporting the interpretation that A. brevirostrum exhibit adaptive differences based on watershed. Combined with results of prior genetic (mitochondrial DNA) and behavioral studies, the current work suggests that dispersal is an important factor in maintaining genetic diversity in A. brevirostrum and that the basic unit for conservation management is arguably the local population.

  13. The X-ray Crystal Structure of the Phage Tail Terminator Protein Reveals the Biologically Relevant Hexameric Rang Structure and Demonstrates a Conserved mechanism of Tail Termination among Divrse Long Tailed Phages

    SciTech Connect

    Pell, L.; Liu, A; Edmonds, L; Donaldson, L; Howell, L; Davidson, A

    2009-01-01

    The tail terminator protein (TrP) plays an essential role in phage tail assembly by capping the rapidly polymerizing tail once it has reached its requisite length and serving as the interaction surface for phage heads. Here, we present the 2.7-A crystal structure of a hexameric ring of gpU, the TrP of phage ?. Using sequence alignment analysis and site-directed mutagenesis, we have shown that this multimeric structure is biologically relevant and we have delineated its functional surfaces. Comparison of the hexameric crystal structure with the solution structure of gpU that we previously solved using NMR spectroscopy shows large structural changes occurring upon multimerization and suggests a mechanism that allows gpU to remain monomeric at high concentrations on its own, yet polymerize readily upon contact with an assembled tail tube. The gpU hexamer displays several flexible loops that play key roles in head and tail binding, implying a role for disorder-to-order transitions in controlling assembly as has been observed with other ? morphogenetic proteins. Finally, we have found that the hexameric structure of gpU is very similar to the structure of a putative TrP from a contractile phage tail even though it displays no detectable sequence similarity. This finding coupled with further bioinformatic investigations has led us to conclude that the TrPs of non-contractile-tailed phages, such as ?, are evolutionarily related to those of contractile-tailed phages, such as P2 and Mu, and that all long-tailed phages may utilize a conserved mechanism for tail termination.

  14. Cloning and Characterization of the Tetrocarcin A Gene Cluster from Micromonospora chalcea NRRL 11289 Reveals a Highly Conserved Strategy for Tetronate Biosynthesis in Spirotetronate Antibiotics▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Fang, Jie; Zhang, Yiping; Huang, Lijuan; Jia, Xinying; Zhang, Qi; Zhang, Xu; Tang, Gongli; Liu, Wen

    2008-01-01

    Tetrocarcin A (TCA), produced by Micromonospora chalcea NRRL 11289, is a spirotetronate antibiotic with potent antitumor activity and versatile modes of action. In this study, the biosynthetic gene cluster of TCA was cloned and localized to a 108-kb contiguous DNA region. In silico sequence analysis revealed 36 putative genes that constitute this cluster (including 11 for unusual sugar biosynthesis, 13 for aglycone formation, and 4 for glycosylations) and allowed us to propose the biosynthetic pathway of TCA. The formation of d-tetronitrose, l-amicetose, and l-digitoxose may begin with d-glucose-1-phosphate, share early enzymatic steps, and branch into different pathways by competitive actions of specific enzymes. Tetronolide biosynthesis involves the incorporation of a 3-C unit with a polyketide intermediate to form the characteristic spirotetronate moiety and trans-decalin system. Further substitution of tetronolide with five deoxysugars (one being a deoxynitrosugar) was likely due to the activities of four glycosyltransferases. In vitro characterization of the first enzymatic step by utilization of 1,3-biphosphoglycerate as the substrate and in vivo cross-complementation of the bifunctional fused gene tcaD3 (with the functions of chlD3 and chlD4) to ΔchlD3 and ΔchlD4 in chlorothricin biosynthesis supported the highly conserved tetronate biosynthetic strategy in the spirotetronate family. Deletion of a large DNA fragment encoding polyketide synthases resulted in a non-TCA-producing strain, providing a clear background for the identification of novel analogs. These findings provide insights into spirotetronate biosynthesis and demonstrate that combinatorial-biosynthesis methods can be applied to the TCA biosynthetic machinery to generate structural diversity. PMID:18586939

  15. Genetic Structure and Diversity Analysis Revealed by AFLP Markers on Different Glycyrrhiza glabra L. an Endangered Medicinal Species from South of Iran and Implications for Conservation.

    PubMed

    Hakimi, Atieh; Zolfaghari, Maryam; Sorkheh, Karim

    2016-09-28

    Glycyrrhiza glabra is an endangered and national-protected medicinal plant species distributed in semi-arid and arid areas of South of Iran. This study addresses the genetic diversity and relationship between populations in different habitats by amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP). The plant materials consisted of 90 individuals from nine different populating areas of Dezful, Ramhormoz, Ahvaz, Abadan, Khorramshahr, Behbahan, Haft-tapeh, Andimeshk, and Shushtar. Twenty-three AFLP primer combinations generated a total of 1019 bands with 94.80 % polymorphism. Unweighted pair group method based on arithmetic average (UPGMA) analysis was performed on Jaccard's similarity coefficient matrix. According to results, the genetic resources and diversity in wild populations of G. glabra were rich. The number of polymorphic fragments per primer combination detected ranged from 18 to 65 bands with an average of 41.95 bands. Average polymorphic information content (PIC) was 0.81 in overall primer combinations. M-GTC+P-AGC primer combination showed the highest PIC (0.94) which can be a good candidate primer combination to verify genetic diversity in G. glabra. The UPGMA and principal coordinate analysis showed a clear distinction among the genotypes and the genotypes divided into three clusters in the dendrogram results. A model-based structure analysis revealed the presence of three groups. The study showed that genetic variation and population structure are determined among the accessions of G. glabra collected from different locations. High level of genetic variation in both intra- and inter-species was detected. Conservational efforts have to be strengthened for all populations of the plant species in different habitats.

  16. Sequence-Based Screening for Rare Enzymes: New Insights into the World of AMDases Reveal a Conserved Motif and 58 Novel Enzymes Clustering in Eight Distinct Families

    PubMed Central

    Maimanakos, Janine; Chow, Jennifer; Gaßmeyer, Sarah K.; Güllert, Simon; Busch, Florian; Kourist, Robert; Streit, Wolfgang R.

    2016-01-01

    Arylmalonate Decarboxylases (AMDases, EC 4.1.1.76) are very rare and mostly underexplored enzymes. Currently only four known and biochemically characterized representatives exist. However, their ability to decarboxylate α-disubstituted malonic acid derivatives to optically pure products without cofactors makes them attractive and promising candidates for the use as biocatalysts in industrial processes. Until now, AMDases could not be separated from other members of the aspartate/glutamate racemase superfamily based on their gene sequences. Within this work, a search algorithm was developed that enables a reliable prediction of AMDase activity for potential candidates. Based on specific sequence patterns and screening methods 58 novel AMDase candidate genes could be identified in this work. Thereby, AMDases with the conserved sequence pattern of Bordetella bronchiseptica’s prototype appeared to be limited to the classes of Alpha-, Beta-, and Gamma-proteobacteria. Amino acid homologies and comparison of gene surrounding sequences enabled the classification of eight enzyme clusters. Particularly striking is the accumulation of genes coding for different transporters of the tripartite tricarboxylate transporters family, TRAP transporters and ABC transporters as well as genes coding for mandelate racemases/muconate lactonizing enzymes that might be involved in substrate uptake or degradation of AMDase products. Further, three novel AMDases were characterized which showed a high enantiomeric excess (>99%) of the (R)-enantiomer of flurbiprofen. These are the recombinant AmdA and AmdV from Variovorax sp. strains HH01 and HH02, originated from soil, and AmdP from Polymorphum gilvum found by a data base search. Altogether our findings give new insights into the class of AMDases and reveal many previously unknown enzyme candidates with high potential for bioindustrial processes. PMID:27610105

  17. A conserved fold for fimbrial components revealed by the crystal structure of a putative fimbrial assembly protein (BT1062) from Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron at 2.2 Å resolution

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Qingping; Abdubek, Polat; Astakhova, Tamara; Axelrod, Herbert L.; Bakolitsa, Constantina; Cai, Xiaohui; Carlton, Dennis; Chen, Connie; Chiu, Hsiu-Ju; Chiu, Michelle; Clayton, Thomas; Das, Debanu; Deller, Marc C.; Duan, Lian; Ellrott, Kyle; Farr, Carol L.; Feuerhelm, Julie; Grant, Joanna C.; Grzechnik, Anna; Han, Gye Won; Jaroszewski, Lukasz; Jin, Kevin K.; Klock, Heath E.; Knuth, Mark W.; Kozbial, Piotr; Krishna, S. Sri; Kumar, Abhinav; Marciano, David; McMullan, Daniel; Miller, Mitchell D.; Morse, Andrew T.; Nigoghossian, Edward; Nopakun, Amanda; Okach, Linda; Puckett, Christina; Reyes, Ron; Sefcovic, Natasha; Tien, Henry J.; Trame, Christine B.; van den Bedem, Henry; Weekes, Dana; Wooten, Tiffany; Yeh, Andrew; Zhou, Jiadong; Hodgson, Keith O.; Wooley, John; Elsliger, Marc-Andre; Deacon, Ashley M.; Godzik, Adam; Lesley, Scott A.; Wilson, Ian A.

    2010-01-01

    BT1062 from Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron is a homolog of Mfa2 (PGN0288 or PG0179), which is a component of the minor fimbriae in Porphyromonas gingivalis. The crystal structure of BT1062 revealed a conserved fold that is widely adopted by fimbrial components. PMID:20944223

  18. Utilization of similar mechanisms by Legionella pneumophila to parasitize two evolutionarily distant host cells, mammalian macrophages and protozoa.

    PubMed Central

    Gao, L Y; Harb, O S; Abu Kwaik, Y

    1997-01-01

    The Legionnaires' disease bacterium, Legionella pneumophila, is an intracellular pathogen of humans that is amplified in the environment by intracellular multiplication within protozoa. Within both evolutionarily distant hosts, the bacterium multiplies in a rough endoplasmic reticulum-surrounded phagosome that is retarded from maturation through the endosomal-lysosomal degradation pathway. To gain an understanding of the mechanisms utilized by L. pneumophila to invade and replicate within two evolutionarily distant hosts, we isolated a collection of 89 mini-Tn10::kan insertion mutants that exhibited defects in cytotoxicity, intracellular survival, and replication within both U937 macrophage-like cells and Acanthamoeba polyphaga. Interestingly, the patterns of defects in intracellular survival and replication of the mutants within both host cells were highly similar, and thus we designated the defective loci in these mutants pmi (for protozoan and macrophage infectivity loci). On the basis of their ability to attach to host cells and their growth kinetics during the intracellular infection, the mutants were grouped into five groups. Groups 1 and 2 included 41 mutants that were severely defective in intracellular survival and were completely or substantially killed during the first 4 h of infection in both host cells. Three members of group 1 were severely defective in attachment to both U937 cells and A. polyphaga, and another four mutants of group 1 exhibited severe defects in attachment to A. polyphaga but only a mild reduction in their attachment to U937 cells. Four members of groups 1 and 2 were serum sensitive. Intracellular replication of mutants of the other three groups was less defective than that of mutants of groups 1 and 2, and their growth kinetics within both host cells were similar. The mutants were tested for several other phenotypes in vitro, revealing that 14 of the pmi mutants were resistant to NaCl, 3 had insertions in dot or icm, 3 were

  19. Structural, Biochemical, and Phylogenetic Analyses Suggest That Indole-3-Acetic Acid Methyltransferase Is an Evolutionarily Ancient Member of the SABATH Family

    SciTech Connect

    Zhao,N.; Ferrer, J.; Ross, J.; Guan, J.; Yang, Y.; Pichersky, E.; Noel, J.; Chen, F.

    2008-01-01

    The plant SABATH protein family encompasses a group of related small-molecule methyltransferases (MTs) that catalyze the S-adenosyl-L-methionine-dependent methylation of natural chemicals encompassing widely divergent structures. Indole-3-acetic acid (IAA) methyltransferase (IAMT) is a member of the SABATH family that modulates IAA homeostasis in plant tissues through methylation of IAA's free carboxyl group. The crystal structure of Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) IAMT (AtIAMT1) was determined and refined to 2.75 Angstroms resolution. The overall tertiary and quaternary structures closely resemble the two-domain bilobed monomer and the dimeric arrangement, respectively, previously observed for the related salicylic acid carboxyl methyltransferase from Clarkia breweri (CbSAMT). To further our understanding of the biological function and evolution of SABATHs, especially of IAMT, we analyzed the SABATH gene family in the rice (Oryza sativa) genome. Forty-one OsSABATH genes were identified. Expression analysis showed that more than one-half of the OsSABATH genes were transcribed in one or multiple organs. The OsSABATH gene most similar to AtIAMT1 is OsSABATH4. Escherichia coli-expressed OsSABATH4 protein displayed the highest level of catalytic activity toward IAA and was therefore named OsIAMT1. OsIAMT1 exhibited kinetic properties similar to AtIAMT1 and poplar IAMT (PtIAMT1). Structural modeling of OsIAMT1 and PtIAMT1 using the experimentally determined structure of AtIAMT1 reported here as a template revealed conserved structural features of IAMTs within the active-site cavity that are divergent from functionally distinct members of the SABATH family, such as CbSAMT. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that IAMTs from Arabidopsis, rice, and poplar (Populus spp.) form a monophyletic group. Thus, structural, biochemical, and phylogenetic evidence supports the hypothesis that IAMT is an evolutionarily ancient member of the SABATH family likely to play a critical role in

  20. Genome-wide analyses reveal a highly conserved Dengue virus envelope peptide which is critical for virus viability and antigenic in humans

    PubMed Central

    Fleith, Renata C.; Lobo, Francisco P.; dos Santos, Paula F.; Rocha, Mariana M.; Bordignon, Juliano; Strottmann, Daisy M.; Patricio, Daniel O.; Pavanelli, Wander R.; Lo Sarzi, Maria; Santos, Claudia N. D.; Ferguson, Brian J.; Mansur, Daniel S.

    2016-01-01

    Targeting regions of proteins that show a high degree of structural conservation has been proposed as a method of developing immunotherapies and vaccines that may bypass the wide genetic variability of RNA viruses. Despite several attempts, a vaccine that protects evenly against the four circulating Dengue virus (DV) serotypes remains elusive. To find critical conserved amino acids in dengue viruses, 120 complete genomes of each serotype were selected at random and used to calculate conservation scores for nucleotide and amino acid sequences. The identified peptide sequences were analysed for their structural conservation and localisation using crystallographic data. The longest, surface exposed, highly conserved peptide of Envelope protein was found to correspond to amino acid residues 250 to 270. Mutation of this peptide in DV1 was lethal, since no replication of the mutant virus was detected in human cells. Antibodies against this peptide were detected in DV naturally infected patients indicating its potential antigenicity. Hence, this study has identified a highly conserved, critical peptide in DV that is a target of antibodies in infected humans. PMID:27805018

  1. Human preferences for sexually dimorphic faces may be evolutionarily novel

    PubMed Central

    Scott, Isabel M.; Clark, Andrew P.; Josephson, Steven C.; Boyette, Adam H.; Cuthill, Innes C.; Fried, Ruby L.; Gibson, Mhairi A.; Hewlett, Barry S.; Jamieson, Mark; Jankowiak, William; Honey, P. Lynne; Huang, Zejun; Liebert, Melissa A.; Purzycki, Benjamin G.; Shaver, John H.; Snodgrass, J. Josh; Sosis, Richard; Sugiyama, Lawrence S.; Swami, Viren; Yu, Douglas W.; Zhao, Yangke; Penton-Voak, Ian S.

    2014-01-01

    A large literature proposes that preferences for exaggerated sex typicality in human faces (masculinity/femininity) reflect a long evolutionary history of sexual and social selection. This proposal implies that dimorphism was important to judgments of attractiveness and personality in ancestral environments. It is difficult to evaluate, however, because most available data come from large-scale, industrialized, urban populations. Here, we report the results for 12 populations with very diverse levels of economic development. Surprisingly, preferences for exaggerated sex-specific traits are only found in the novel, highly developed environments. Similarly, perceptions that masculine males look aggressive increase strongly with development and, specifically, urbanization. These data challenge the hypothesis that facial dimorphism was an important ancestral signal of heritable mate value. One possibility is that highly developed environments provide novel opportunities to discern relationships between facial traits and behavior by exposing individuals to large numbers of unfamiliar faces, revealing patterns too subtle to detect with smaller samples. PMID:25246593

  2. Atomic model of CPV reveals the mechanism used by this single-shelled virus to economically carry out functions conserved in multishelled reoviruses.

    PubMed

    Yu, Xuekui; Ge, Peng; Jiang, Jiansen; Atanasov, Ivo; Zhou, Z Hong

    2011-05-11

    Unlike the multishelled viruses in the Reoviridae, cytoplasmic polyhedrosis virus (CPV) is single shelled, yet stable and fully capable of carrying out functions conserved within Reoviridae. Here, we report a 3.1 Å resolution cryo electron microscopy structure of CPV and derive its atomic model, consisting of 60 turret proteins (TPs), 120 each of capsid shell proteins (CSPs) and large protrusion proteins (LPPs). Two unique segments of CSP contribute to CPV's stability: an inserted protrusion domain interacting with neighboring proteins, and an N-anchor tying up CSPs together through strong interactions such as β sheet augmentation. Without the need to interact with outer shell proteins, LPP retains only the N-terminal two-third region containing a conserved helix-barrel core and interacts exclusively with CSP. TP is also simplified, containing only domains involved in RNA capping. Our results illustrate how CPV proteins have evolved in a coordinative manner to economically carry out their conserved functions.

  3. Volunteer Conservation Action Data Reveals Large-Scale and Long-Term Negative Population Trends of a Widespread Amphibian, the Common Toad (Bufo bufo)

    PubMed Central

    Petrovan, Silviu O.

    2016-01-01

    Rare and threatened species are the most frequent focus of conservation science and action. With the ongoing shift from single-species conservation towards the preservation of ecosystem services, there is a greater need to understand abundance trends of common species because declines in common species can disproportionately impact ecosystems function. We used volunteer-collected data in two European countries, the United Kingdom (UK) and Switzerland, since the 1970s to assess national and regional trends for one of Europe’s most abundant amphibian species, the common toad (Bufo bufo). Millions of toads were moved by volunteers across roads during this period in an effort to protect them from road traffic. For Switzerland, we additionally estimated trends for the common frog (Rana temporaria), a similarly widespread and common amphibian species. We used state-space models to account for variability in detection and effort and included only populations with at least 5 years of data; 153 populations for the UK and 141 for Switzerland. Common toads declined continuously in each decade in both countries since the 1980s. Given the declines, this common species almost qualifies for International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) red-listing over this period despite volunteer conservation efforts. Reasons for the declines and wider impacts remain unknown. By contrast, common frog populations were stable or increasing in Switzerland, although there was evidence of declines after 2003. “Toads on Roads” schemes are vital citizen conservation action projects, and the data from such projects can be used for large scale trend estimations of widespread amphibians. We highlight the need for increased research into the status of common amphibian species in addition to conservation efforts focusing on rare and threatened species. PMID:27706154

  4. Volunteer Conservation Action Data Reveals Large-Scale and Long-Term Negative Population Trends of a Widespread Amphibian, the Common Toad (Bufo bufo).

    PubMed

    Petrovan, Silviu O; Schmidt, Benedikt R

    2016-01-01

    Rare and threatened species are the most frequent focus of conservation science and action. With the ongoing shift from single-species conservation towards the preservation of ecosystem services, there is a greater need to understand abundance trends of common species because declines in common species can disproportionately impact ecosystems function. We used volunteer-collected data in two European countries, the United Kingdom (UK) and Switzerland, since the 1970s to assess national and regional trends for one of Europe's most abundant amphibian species, the common toad (Bufo bufo). Millions of toads were moved by volunteers across roads during this period in an effort to protect them from road traffic. For Switzerland, we additionally estimated trends for the common frog (Rana temporaria), a similarly widespread and common amphibian species. We used state-space models to account for variability in detection and effort and included only populations with at least 5 years of data; 153 populations for the UK and 141 for Switzerland. Common toads declined continuously in each decade in both countries since the 1980s. Given the declines, this common species almost qualifies for International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) red-listing over this period despite volunteer conservation efforts. Reasons for the declines and wider impacts remain unknown. By contrast, common frog populations were stable or increasing in Switzerland, although there was evidence of declines after 2003. "Toads on Roads" schemes are vital citizen conservation action projects, and the data from such projects can be used for large scale trend estimations of widespread amphibians. We highlight the need for increased research into the status of common amphibian species in addition to conservation efforts focusing on rare and threatened species.

  5. Comparative sequence and structure analysis reveals the conservation and diversity of nucleotide positions and their associated tertiary interactions in the riboswitches.

    PubMed

    Appasamy, Sri D; Ramlan, Effirul Ikhwan; Firdaus-Raih, Mohd

    2013-01-01

    The tertiary motifs in complex RNA molecules play vital roles to either stabilize the formation of RNA 3D structure or to provide important biological functionality to the molecule. In order to better understand the roles of these tertiary motifs in riboswitches, we examined 11 representative riboswitch PDB structures for potential agreement of both motif occurrences and conservations. A total of 61 unique tertiary interactions were found in the reference structures. In addition to the expected common A-minor motifs and base-triples mainly involved in linking distant regions the riboswitch structures three highly conserved variants of A-minor interactions called G-minors were found in the SAM-I and FMN riboswitches where they appear to be involved in the recognition of the respective ligand's functional groups. From our structural survey as well as corresponding structure and sequence alignments, the agreement between motif occurrences and conservations are very prominent across the representative riboswitches. Our analysis provide evidence that some of these tertiary interactions are essential components to form the structure where their sequence positions are conserved despite a high degree of diversity in other parts of the respective riboswitches sequences. This is indicative of a vital role for these tertiary interactions in determining the specific biological function of riboswitch.

  6. A Conserved Circular Network of Coregulated Lipids Modulates Innate Immune Responses.

    PubMed

    Köberlin, Marielle S; Snijder, Berend; Heinz, Leonhard X; Baumann, Christoph L; Fauster, Astrid; Vladimer, Gregory I; Gavin, Anne-Claude; Superti-Furga, Giulio

    2015-07-02

    Lipid composition affects the biophysical properties of membranes that provide a platform for receptor-mediated cellular signaling. To study the regulatory role of membrane lipid composition, we combined genetic perturbations of sphingolipid metabolism with the quantification of diverse steps in Toll-like receptor (TLR) signaling and mass spectrometry-based lipidomics. Membrane lipid composition was broadly affected by these perturbations, revealing a circular network of coregulated sphingolipids and glycerophospholipids. This evolutionarily conserved network architecture simultaneously reflected membrane lipid metabolism, subcellular localization, and adaptation mechanisms. Integration of the diverse TLR-induced inflammatory phenotypes with changes in lipid abundance assigned distinct functional roles to individual lipid species organized across the network. This functional annotation accurately predicted the inflammatory response of cells derived from patients suffering from lipid storage disorders, based solely on their altered membrane lipid composition. The analytical strategy described here empowers the understanding of higher-level organization of membrane lipid function in diverse biological systems.

  7. Evolutionary innovation and conservation in the embryonic derivation of the vertebrate skull.

    PubMed

    Piekarski, Nadine; Gross, Joshua B; Hanken, James

    2014-12-01

    Development of the vertebrate skull has been studied intensively for more than 150 years, yet many essential features remain unresolved. One such feature is the extent to which embryonic derivation of individual bones is evolutionarily conserved or labile. We perform long-term fate mapping using GFP-transgenic axolotl and Xenopus laevis to document the contribution of individual cranial neural crest streams to the osteocranium in these amphibians. Here we show that the axolotl pattern is strikingly similar to that in amniotes; it likely represents the ancestral condition for tetrapods. Unexpectedly, the pattern in Xenopus is much different; it may constitute a unique condition that evolved after anurans diverged from other amphibians. Such changes reveal an unappreciated relation between life history evolution and cranial development and exemplify 'developmental system drift', in which interspecific divergence in developmental processes that underlie homologous characters occurs with little or no concomitant change in the adult phenotype.

  8. On Nash Equilibrium and Evolutionarily Stable States That Are Not Characterised by the Folk Theorem.

    PubMed

    Li, Jiawei; Kendall, Graham

    2015-01-01

    In evolutionary game theory, evolutionarily stable states are characterised by the folk theorem because exact solutions to the replicator equation are difficult to obtain. It is generally assumed that the folk theorem, which is the fundamental theory for non-cooperative games, defines all Nash equilibria in infinitely repeated games. Here, we prove that Nash equilibria that are not characterised by the folk theorem do exist. By adopting specific reactive strategies, a group of players can be better off by coordinating their actions in repeated games. We call it a type-k equilibrium when a group of k players coordinate their actions and they have no incentive to deviate from their strategies simultaneously. The existence and stability of the type-k equilibrium in general games is discussed. This study shows that the sets of Nash equilibria and evolutionarily stable states have greater cardinality than classic game theory has predicted in many repeated games.

  9. NMR WaterLOGSY Reveals Weak Binding of Bisphenol A with Amyloid Fibers of a Conserved 11 Residue Peptide from Androgen Receptor

    PubMed Central

    Asencio-Hernández, Julia; Kieffer, Bruno

    2016-01-01

    There is growing evidence that bisphenol A (BPA), a molecule largely released in the environment, has detrimental effects on ecosystems and on human health. It acts as an endocrine disruptor targeting steroid hormone receptors, such as the estrogen receptor (ER), estrogen-related receptor (ERR) and androgen receptor (AR). BPA-derived molecules have recently been shown to interact with the AR N-terminal domain (AR-NTD), which is known to be largely intrinsically disordered. This N-terminal domain contains an 11 residue conserved domain that forms amyloid fibers upon oxidative dimerisation through its strictly conserved Cys240 residue. We investigate here the interaction of BPA, and other potential endocrine disruptors, with AR-NTD amyloid fibers using the WaterLOGSY NMR experiment. We observed a selective binding of these compounds to the amyloid fibers formed by the AR-NTD conserved region and glutamine homopolymers. This observation suggests that the high potency of endocrine disruptors may result, in part, from their ability to bind amyloid forms of nuclear receptors in addition to their cognate binding sites. This property may be exploited to design future therapeutic strategies targeting AR related diseases such as the spinal bulbar muscular atrophy or prostate cancer. The ability of NMR WaterLOGSY experiments to detect weak interactions between small ligands and amyloid fibers may prove to be of particular interest for identifying promising hit molecules. PMID:27583469

  10. Conservation of NLR-triggered immunity across plant lineages.

    PubMed

    Maekawa, Takaki; Kracher, Barbara; Vernaldi, Saskia; Ver Loren van Themaat, Emiel; Schulze-Lefert, Paul

    2012-12-04

    The nucleotide-binding domain and leucine-rich repeat (NLR) family of plant receptors detects pathogen-derived molecules, designated effectors, inside host cells and mediates innate immune responses to pathogenic invaders. Genetic evidence revealed species-specific coevolution of many NLRs with effectors from host-adapted pathogens, suggesting that the specificity of these NLRs is restricted to the host or closely related plant species. However, we report that an NLR immune receptor (MLA1) from monocotyledonous barley is fully functional in partially immunocompromised dicotyledonous Arabidopsis thaliana against the barley powdery mildew fungus, Blumeria graminis f. sp. hordei. This implies ~200 million years of evolutionary conservation of the underlying immune mechanism. A time-course RNA-seq analysis in transgenic Arabidopsis lines detected sustained expression of a large MLA1-dependent gene cluster. This cluster is greatly enriched in genes known to respond to the fungal cell wall-derived microbe-associated molecular pattern chitin. The MLA1-dependent sustained transcript accumulation could define a conserved function of the nuclear pool of MLA1 detected in barley and Arabidopsis. We also found that MLA1-triggered immunity was fully retained in mutant plants that are simultaneously depleted of ethylene, jasmonic acid, and salicylic acid signaling. This points to the existence of an evolutionarily conserved and phytohormone-independent MLA1-mediated resistance mechanism. This also suggests a conserved mechanism for internalization of B. graminis f. sp. hordei effectors into host cells of flowering plants. Furthermore, the deduced connectivity of the NLR to multiple branches of immune signaling pathways likely confers increased robustness against pathogen effector-mediated interception of host immune signaling and could have contributed to the evolutionary preservation of the immune mechanism.

  11. Deciphering the onychophoran 'segmentation gene cascade': Gene expression reveals limited involvement of pair rule gene orthologs in segmentation, but a highly conserved segment polarity gene network.

    PubMed

    Janssen, Ralf; Budd, Graham E

    2013-10-01

    The hallmark of the arthropods is their segmented body, although origin of segmentation, however, is unresolved. In order to shed light on the origin of segmentation we investigated orthologs of pair rule genes (PRGs) and segment polarity genes (SPGs) in a member of the closest related sister-group to the arthropods, the onychophorans. Our gene expression data analysis suggests that most of the onychophoran PRGs do not play a role in segmentation. One possible exception is the even-skipped (eve) gene that is expressed in the posterior end of the onychophoran where new segments are likely patterned, and is also expressed in segmentation-gene typical transverse stripes in at least a number of newly formed segments. Other onychophoran PRGs such as runt (run), hairy/Hes (h/Hes) and odd-skipped (odd) do not appear to have a function in segmentation at all. Onychophoran PRGs that act low in the segmentation gene cascade in insects, however, are potentially involved in segment-patterning. Most obvious is that from the expression of the pairberry (pby) gene ortholog that is expressed in a typical SPG-pattern. Since this result suggested possible conservation of the SPG-network we further investigated SPGs (and associated factors) such as Notum in the onychophoran. We find that the expression patterns of SPGs in arthropods and the onychophoran are highly conserved, suggesting a conserved SPG-network in these two clades, and indeed also in an annelid. This may suggest that the common ancestor of lophotrochozoans and ecdysozoans was already segmented utilising the same SPG-network, or that the SPG-network was recruited independently in annelids and onychophorans/arthropods.

  12. Transgenic zebrafish reporter lines reveal conserved Toll-like receptor signaling potential in embryonic myeloid leukocytes and adult immune cell lineages.

    PubMed

    Hall, Chris; Flores, Maria Vega; Chien, Annie; Davidson, Alan; Crosier, Kathryn; Crosier, Phil

    2009-05-01

    The immune response of a host to an invading pathogen is dependent on the capacity of its immune cell compartment to recognize highly conserved pathogen components using an ancient class of pattern recognition receptors known as Toll-like receptors (TLRs). Initiation of TLR-mediated signaling results in the induction of proinflammatory cytokines that help govern the scale and duration of any ensuing response. Specificity for TLR signaling is, in part, a result of the differential recruitment of intracellular adaptor molecules. Of these, MyD88 is required for the majority of TLR signaling. Zebrafish have been shown to possess TLRs and adaptor molecules throughout early development, including MyD88, strongly suggesting conservation of this ancient defense mechanism. However, information about which embryonic cells/tissues possess this conserved signaling potential is lacking. To help define which embryonic cells, in particular, those of the innate immune system, have the potential for MyD88-dependent, TLR-mediated signaling, we generated transgenic reporter lines using regulatory elements of the myd88 gene to drive the fluorescent reporters enhanced GFP and Discosoma red fluorescent protein 2 within live zebrafish. These lines possess fluorescently marked cells/tissues consistent with endogenous myd88 expression, including a subset of myeloid leukocytes. These innate immune cells were confirmed to express other TLR adaptors including Mal, trif, and Sarm. Live wound-healing and infection assays validated the potential of these myd88-expressing leukocytes to participate in immune responses. These lines will provide a valuable resource for further resolving the contribution of MyD88 to early vertebrate immunity.

  13. Comparative Developmental Transcriptomics Reveals Rewiring of a Highly Conserved Gene Regulatory Network during a Major Life History Switch in the Sea Urchin Genus Heliocidaris

    PubMed Central

    Israel, Jennifer W.; Martik, Megan L.; Byrne, Maria; Raff, Elizabeth C.; Raff, Rudolf A.; McClay, David R.; Wray, Gregory A.

    2016-01-01

    The ecologically significant shift in developmental strategy from planktotrophic (feeding) to lecithotrophic (nonfeeding) development in the sea urchin genus Heliocidaris is one of the most comprehensively studied life history transitions in any animal. Although the evolution of lecithotrophy involved substantial changes to larval development and morphology, it is not known to what extent changes in gene expression underlie the developmental differences between species, nor do we understand how these changes evolved within the context of the well-defined gene regulatory network (GRN) underlying sea urchin development. To address these questions, we used RNA-seq to measure expression dynamics across development in three species: the lecithotroph Heliocidaris erythrogramma, the closely related planktotroph H. tuberculata, and an outgroup planktotroph Lytechinus variegatus. Using well-established statistical methods, we developed a novel framework for identifying, quantifying, and polarizing evolutionary changes in gene expression profiles across the transcriptome and within the GRN. We found that major changes in gene expression profiles were more numerous during the evolution of lecithotrophy than during the persistence of planktotrophy, and that genes with derived expression profiles in the lecithotroph displayed specific characteristics as a group that are consistent with the dramatically altered developmental program in this species. Compared to the transcriptome, changes in gene expression profiles within the GRN were even more pronounced in the lecithotroph. We found evidence for conservation and likely divergence of particular GRN regulatory interactions in the lecithotroph, as well as significant changes in the expression of genes with known roles in larval skeletogenesis. We further use coexpression analysis to identify genes of unknown function that may contribute to both conserved and derived developmental traits between species. Collectively, our results

  14. Comparative analysis of antiviral responses in Brachypodium distachyon and Setaria viridis reveals conserved and unique outcomes among C3 and C4 plant defenses.

    PubMed

    Mandadi, Kranthi K; Pyle, Jesse D; Scholthof, Karen-Beth G

    2014-11-01

    Viral diseases cause significant losses in global agricultural production, yet little is known about grass antiviral defense mechanisms. We previously reported on host immune responses triggered by Panicum mosaic virus (PMV) and its satellite virus (SPMV) in the model C3 grass Brachypodium distachyon. To aid comparative analyses of C3 and C4 grass antiviral defenses, here, we establish B. distachyon and Setaria viridis (a C4 grass) as compatible hosts for seven grass-infecting viruses, including PMV and SPMV, Brome mosaic virus, Barley stripe mosaic virus, Maize mild mottle virus, Sorghum yellow banding virus, Wheat streak mosaic virus (WSMV), and Foxtail mosaic virus (FoMV). Etiological and molecular characterization of the fourteen grass-virus pathosystems showed evidence for conserved crosstalk among salicylic acid (SA), jasmonic acid, and ethylene pathways in B. distachyon and S. viridis. Strikingly, expression of PHYTOALEXIN DEFICIENT4, an upstream modulator of SA signaling, was consistently suppressed during most virus infections in B. distachyon and S. viridis. Hierarchical clustering analyses further identified unique antiviral responses triggered by two morphologically similar viruses, FoMV and WSMV, and uncovered other host-dependent effects. Together, the results of this study establish B. distachyon and S. viridis as models for the analysis of plant-virus interactions and provide the first framework for conserved and unique features of C3 and C4 grass antiviral defenses.

  15. An evolutionarily conserved SSNA1/DIP13 homologue is a component of both basal and apical complexes of Toxoplasma gondii

    PubMed Central

    Lévêque, Maude F.; Berry, Laurence; Besteiro, Sébastien

    2016-01-01

    Microtubule-based cytoskeletal structures have fundamental roles in several essential eukaryotic processes, including transport of intracellular constituents as well as ciliary and flagellar mobility. Temporal and spatial organisation of microtubules is determined by microtubule organising centers and a number of appendages and accessory proteins. Members of the SSNA1/DIP13 family are coiled coil proteins that are known to localise to microtubular structures like centrosomes and flagella, but are otherwise poorly characterised. We have identified a homologue of SSNA1/DIP13 in the parasitic protist Toxoplasma gondii and found it localises to parasite-specific cytoskeletal structures: the conoid in the apical complex of mature and dividing cells, and the basal complex in elongating daughter cells during cell division. This protein is dispensable for parasite growth in vitro. However, quite remarkably, this coiled coil protein is able to self-associate into higher order structures both in vitro and in vivo, and its overexpression is impairing parasite division. PMID:27324377

  16. The Evolutionarily Conserved Protein PHOTOSYNTHESIS AFFECTED MUTANT71 Is Required for Efficient Manganese Uptake at the Thylakoid Membrane in Arabidopsis

    PubMed Central

    Steinberger, Iris; Herdean, Andrei; Gandini, Chiara; Labs, Mathias; Flügge, Ulf-Ingo; Geimer, Stefan; Schmidt, Sidsel Birkelund; Husted, Søren; Spetea, Cornelia; Leister, Dario

    2016-01-01

    In plants, algae, and cyanobacteria, photosystem II (PSII) catalyzes the light-driven oxidation of water. The oxygen-evolving complex of PSII is a Mn4CaO5 cluster embedded in a well-defined protein environment in the thylakoid membrane. However, transport of manganese and calcium into the thylakoid lumen remains poorly understood. Here, we show that Arabidopsis thaliana PHOTOSYNTHESIS AFFECTED MUTANT71 (PAM71) is an integral thylakoid membrane protein involved in Mn2+ and Ca2+ homeostasis in chloroplasts. This protein is required for normal operation of the oxygen-evolving complex (as evidenced by oxygen evolution rates) and for manganese incorporation. Manganese binding to PSII was severely reduced in pam71 thylakoids, particularly in PSII supercomplexes. In cation partitioning assays with intact chloroplasts, Mn2+ and Ca2+ ions were differently sequestered in pam71, with Ca2+ enriched in pam71 thylakoids relative to the wild type. The changes in Ca2+ homeostasis were accompanied by an increased contribution of the transmembrane electrical potential to the proton motive force across the thylakoid membrane. PSII activity in pam71 plants and the corresponding Chlamydomonas reinhardtii mutant cgld1 was restored by supplementation with Mn2+, but not Ca2+. Furthermore, PAM71 suppressed the Mn2+-sensitive phenotype of the yeast mutant Δpmr1. Therefore, PAM71 presumably functions in Mn2+ uptake into thylakoids to ensure optimal PSII performance. PMID:27020959

  17. Regulation of carotenoid and bacteriochlorophyll biosynthesis genes and identification of an evolutionarily conserved gene required for bacteriochlorophyll accumulation.

    PubMed

    Armstrong, G A; Cook, D N; Ma, D; Alberti, M; Burke, D H; Hearst, J E

    1993-05-01

    The temporal expression of ten clustered genes required for carotenoid (crt) and bacteriochlorophyll (bch) biosynthesis was examined during the transition from aerobic respiration to anaerobiosis requisite for the development of the photosynthetic membrane in the bacterium Rhodobacter capsulatus. Accumulation of crtA, crtC, crtD, crtE, crtF, crtK, bchC and bchD mRNAs increased transiently and coordinately, up to 12-fold following removal of oxygen from the growth medium, paralleling increases in mRNAs encoding pigment-binding polypeptides of the photosynthetic apparatus. The crtB and crtI genes, in contrast, were expressed similarly in the presence or absence of oxygen. The regulation patterns of promoters for the crtA and crtI genes and the bchCXYZ operon were characterized using lacZ transcriptional fusion and qualitatively reflected the corresponding mRNA accumulation patterns. We also report that the bchI gene product, encoded by a DNA sequence previously considered to be a portion of crtA, shares 49% sequence identity with the nuclear-encoded Arabidopsis thaliana Cs chloroplast protein required for normal pigmentation in plants.

  18. Blue-light dependent reactive oxygen species formation by Arabidopsis cryptochrome may define a novel evolutionarily conserved signaling mechanism.

    PubMed

    Consentino, Laurent; Lambert, Stefan; Martino, Carlos; Jourdan, Nathalie; Bouchet, Pierre-Etienne; Witczak, Jacques; Castello, Pablo; El-Esawi, Mohamed; Corbineau, Francoise; d'Harlingue, Alain; Ahmad, Margaret

    2015-06-01

    Cryptochromes are widespread blue-light absorbing flavoproteins with important signaling roles. In plants they mediate de-etiolation, developmental and stress responses resulting from interaction with downstream signaling partners such as transcription factors and components of the proteasome. Recently, it has been shown that Arabidopsis cry1 activation by blue light also results in direct enzymatic conversion of molecular oxygen (O2 ) to reactive oxygen species (ROS) and hydrogen peroxide (H2 O2 ) in vitro. Here we explored whether direct enzymatic synthesis of ROS by Arabidopsis cry1 can play a physiological role in vivo. ROS formation resulting from cry1 expression was measured by fluorescence assay in insect cell cultures and in Arabidopsis protoplasts from cryptochrome mutant seedlings. Cell death was determined by colorimetric assay. We found that ROS formation results from cry1 activation and induces cell death in insect cell cultures. In plant protoplasts, cryptochrome activation results in rapid increase in ROS formation and cell death. We conclude that ROS formation by cryptochromes may indeed be of physiological relevance and could represent a novel paradigm for cryptochrome signaling.

  19. Actin is an evolutionarily-conserved damage-associated molecular pattern that signals tissue injury in Drosophila melanogaster

    PubMed Central

    Srinivasan, Naren; Gordon, Oliver; Ahrens, Susan; Franz, Anna; Deddouche, Safia; Chakravarty, Probir; Phillips, David; Yunus, Ali A; Rosen, Michael K; Valente, Rita S; Teixeira, Luis; Thompson, Barry; Dionne, Marc S; Wood, Will; Reis e Sousa, Caetano

    2016-01-01

    Damage-associated molecular patterns (DAMPs) are molecules released by dead cells that trigger sterile inflammation and, in vertebrates, adaptive immunity. Actin is a DAMP detected in mammals by the receptor, DNGR-1, expressed by dendritic cells (DCs). DNGR-1 is phosphorylated by Src-family kinases and recruits the tyrosine kinase Syk to promote DC cross-presentation of dead cell-associated antigens. Here we report that actin is also a DAMP in invertebrates that lack DCs and adaptive immunity. Administration of actin to Drosophila melanogaster triggers a response characterised by selective induction of STAT target genes in the fat body through the cytokine Upd3 and its JAK/STAT-coupled receptor, Domeless. Notably, this response requires signalling via Shark, the Drosophila orthologue of Syk, and Src42A, a Drosophila Src-family kinase, and is dependent on Nox activity. Thus, extracellular actin detection via a Src-family kinase-dependent cascade is an ancient means of detecting cell injury that precedes the evolution of adaptive immunity. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.19662.001 PMID:27871362

  20. Long-term window of ischemic tolerance: An evolutionarily conserved form of metabolic plasticity regulated by epigenetic modifications?

    PubMed Central

    Khoury, Nathalie; Koronowski, Kevin B.; Perez-Pinzon, Miguel A.

    2016-01-01

    In the absence of effective neuroprotective agents in the clinic, ischemic and pharmacological preconditioning are gaining increased interest in the field of cerebral ischemia. Our lab recently reported that resveratrol preconditioning affords tolerance against a focal cerebral ischemic insult in mice that can last for at least 14 days in vivo making it the longest window of ischemic tolerance discovered to date by a single administration of a pharmacological agent. The mechanism behind this novel extended window of ischemic tolerance remains elusive. In the below commentary we discuss potential mechanisms that could explain this novel extended window of ischemic tolerance in the context of previously identified windows and the known mechanisms behind them. We also draw parallels from the fields of hibernation and hypoxia-tolerance, which are chronic adaptations to severe conditions of hypoxia and ischemia known to be mediated by a form of metabolic depression. We also briefly discuss the importance of epigenetic modifications in maintaining this depressed state of metabolism. PMID:27796011

  1. The complete sequence of a Spanish isolate of Broad bean wilt virus 1 (BBWV-1) reveals a high variability and conserved motifs in the genus Fabavirus.

    PubMed

    Ferrer, R M; Guerri, J; Luis-Arteaga, M S; Moreno, P; Rubio, L

    2005-10-01

    The genome of a Spanish isolate of Broad bean wilt virus-1 (BBWV-1) was completely sequenced and compared with available sequences of other isolates of the genus Fabavirus (BBWV-1 and BBWV-2). This consisted of two RNAs of 5814 and 3431 nucleotides, respectively, and their organization was similar to that of other members of the family Comoviridae. Its mean nucleotide identity with a BBWV-1 American isolate was 81.5%, and between 59.8 and 63.5% with seven BBWV-2 isolates. Our analysis showed sequence stretches in the 5' non-coding regions which are conserved in both genomic RNAs and in BBWV-1 and BBWV-2 isolates.

  2. The structure of avian polyomavirus reveals variably sized capsids, non-conserved inter-capsomere interactions, and a possible location of the minor capsid protein VP4

    SciTech Connect

    Shen, Peter S.; Enderlein, Dirk; Nelson, Christian D.S.; Carter, Weston S.; Kawano, Masaaki; Xing Li; Swenson, Robert D.; Olson, Norman H.; Baker, Timothy S.; Cheng, R. Holland; Atwood, Walter J.; Johne, Reimar; Belnap, David M.

    2011-03-01

    Avian polyomavirus (APV) causes a fatal, multi-organ disease among several bird species. Using cryogenic electron microscopy and other biochemical techniques, we investigated the structure of APV and compared it to that of mammalian polyomaviruses, particularly JC polyomavirus and simian virus 40. The structure of the pentameric major capsid protein (VP1) is mostly conserved; however, APV VP1 has a unique, truncated C-terminus that eliminates an intercapsomere-connecting {beta}-hairpin observed in other polyomaviruses. We postulate that the terminal {beta}-hairpin locks other polyomavirus capsids in a stable conformation and that absence of the hairpin leads to the observed capsid size variation in APV. Plug-like density features were observed at the base of the VP1 pentamers, consistent with the known location of minor capsid proteins VP2 and VP3. However, the plug density is more prominent in APV and may include VP4, a minor capsid protein unique to bird polyomaviruses.

  3. Importance of the conserved lysine 83 residue of Zea mays cytochrome b(561) for ascorbate-specific transmembrane electron transfer as revealed by site-directed mutagenesis studies.

    PubMed

    Nakanishi, Nobuyuki; Rahman, Motiur Md; Sakamoto, Yoichi; Takigami, Tadakazu; Kobayashi, Kazuo; Hori, Hiroshi; Hase, Toshiharu; Park, Sam-Yong; Tsubaki, Motonari

    2009-11-10

    Cytochromes b(561), a novel class of transmembrane electron transport proteins residing in a large variety of eukaryotic cells, have a number of common structural features including six hydrophobic transmembrane alpha-helices and two heme ligation sites. We found that recombinant Zea mays cytochrome b(561) obtained by a heterologous expression system using yeast Pichia pastoris cells could utilize the ascorbate/mondehydroascorbate radical as a physiological electron donor/acceptor. We found further that a concerted proton/electron transfer mechanism might be operative in Z. mays cytochrome b(561) as well upon the electron acceptance from ascorbate to the cytosolic heme center. The well-conserved Lys(83) residue in a cytosolic loop was found to have a very important role(s) for the binding of ascorbate and the succeeding electron transfer via electrostatic interactions based on the analyses of three site-specific mutants, K83A, K83E, and K83D. Further, unusual behavior of the K83A mutant in pulse radiolysis experiments indicated that Lys(83) might also be responsible for the intramolecular electron transfer to the intravesicular heme. On the other hand, pulse radiolysis experiments on two site-specific mutants, S118A and W122A, for the well-conserved residues in the putative monodehydroascorbate radical binding site showed that their electron transfer activities to the monodehydroascorbate radical were very similar to those of the wild-type protein, indicating that Ser(118) and Trp(122) do not have major roles for the redox events on the intravesicular side.

  4. Analysis of Fibroblast growth factor 15 cis-elements reveals two conserved enhancers which are closely related to cardiac outflow tract development.

    PubMed

    Saitsu, Hirotomo; Shiota, Kohei; Ishibashi, Makoto

    2006-09-01

    Fibroblast growth factor 15 (Fgf15) is expressed in the developing mouse central nervous system and pharyngeal arches. Fgf15 mutant mice showed defects of the cardiac outflow tract probably because of aberrant behavior of the cardiac neural crest cells. In this study, we examined cis-elements of the Fgf15 gene by transient transgenic analysis using lacZ as a reporter. We identified two enhancers: one directed lacZ expression in the hindbrain/spinal cord and the other in the posterior midbrain (pmb), rhombomere1 (r1) and pharyngeal epithelia. Interestingly, human genomic regions which are highly homologous to these two mouse enhancers showed almost the same enhancer activities as those of mice in transgenic mouse embryos, indicating that the two enhancers are conserved between humans and mice. We also showed that the mouse and human pmb/r1 enhancer can regulate lacZ expression in chick embryos in almost the same way as in mouse embryos. We found that the lacZ expression domain with this enhancer was expanded by ectopic Fgf8b expression, suggesting that this enhancer is regulated by Fgf8 signaling. Moreover, over-expression of Fgf15 resulted in up-regulation of Fgf8 expression in the isthmus/r1. These findings suggest that a reciprocal positive regulation exists between Fgf15 and Fgf8 in the isthmus/r1. Together with cardiac outflow tract defects in Fgf15 mutants, the conservation of enhancers in the hindbrain/spinal cord and pharyngeal epithelia suggests that human FGF19 (ortholog of Fgf15) is involved in early development and the distribution of cardiac neural crest cells and is one of the candidate genes for congenital heart defects.

  5. Analysis of the grape MYB R2R3 subfamily reveals expanded wine quality-related clades and conserved gene structure organization across Vitis and Arabidopsis genomes

    PubMed Central

    Matus, José Tomás; Aquea, Felipe; Arce-Johnson, Patricio

    2008-01-01

    Background The MYB superfamily constitutes the most abundant group of transcription factors described in plants. Members control processes such as epidermal cell differentiation, stomatal aperture, flavonoid synthesis, cold and drought tolerance and pathogen resistance. No genome-wide characterization of this family has been conducted in a woody species such as grapevine. In addition, previous analysis of the recently released grape genome sequence suggested expansion events of several gene families involved in wine quality. Results We describe and classify 108 members of the grape R2R3 MYB gene subfamily in terms of their genomic gene structures and similarity to their putative Arabidopsis thaliana orthologues. Seven gene models were derived and analyzed in terms of gene expression and their DNA binding domain structures. Despite low overall sequence homology in the C-terminus of all proteins, even in those with similar functions across Arabidopsis and Vitis, highly conserved motif sequences and exon lengths were found. The grape epidermal cell fate clade is expanded when compared with the Arabidopsis and rice MYB subfamilies. Two anthocyanin MYBA related clusters were identified in chromosomes 2 and 14, one of which includes the previously described grape colour locus. Tannin related loci were also detected with eight candidate homologues in chromosomes 4, 9 and 11. Conclusion This genome wide transcription factor analysis in Vitis suggests that clade-specific grape R2R3 MYB genes are expanded while other MYB genes could be well conserved compared to Arabidopsis. MYB gene abundance, homology and orientation within particular loci also suggests that expanded MYB clades conferring quality attributes of grapes and wines, such as colour and astringency, could possess redundant, overlapping and cooperative functions. PMID:18647406

  6. Structures of Human Pumilio with Noncognate RNAs Reveal Molecular Mechanisms for Binding Promiscuity

    SciTech Connect

    Gupta,Y.; Nair, D.; Wharton, R.; Aggarwal, A.

    2008-01-01

    Pumilio is a founder member of the evolutionarily conserved Puf family of RNA-binding proteins that control a number of physiological processes in eukaryotes. A structure of human Pumilio (hPum) Puf domain bound to a Drosophila regulatory sequence showed that each Puf repeat recognizes a single nucleotide. Puf domains in general bind promiscuously to a large set of degenerate sequences, but the structural basis for this promiscuity has been unclear. Here, we describe the structures of hPum Puf domain complexed to two noncognate RNAs, CycBreverse and Puf5. In each complex, one of the nucleotides is ejected from the binding surface, in effect, acting as a 'spacer.' The complexes also reveal the plasticity of several Puf repeats, which recognize noncanonical nucleotides. Together, these complexes provide a molecular basis for recognition of degenerate binding sites, which significantly increases the number of mRNAs targeted for regulation by Puf proteins in vivo.

  7. A Conserved Role for the NAM/miR164 Developmental Module Reveals a Common Mechanism Underlying Carpel Margin Fusion in Monocarpous and Syncarpous Eurosids

    PubMed Central

    Vialette-Guiraud, Aurélie C. M.; Chauvet, Aurélie; Gutierrez-Mazariegos, Juliana; Eschstruth, Alexis; Ratet, Pascal; Scutt, Charles P.

    2016-01-01

    The majority of angiosperms are syncarpous- their gynoecium is composed of two or more fused carpels. In Arabidopsis thaliana, this fusion is regulated through the balance of expression between CUP SHAPED COTYLEDON (CUC) genes, which are orthologs of the Petunia hybrida transcription factor NO APICAL MERISTEM (NAM), and their post-transcriptional regulator miR164. Accordingly, the expression of a miR164-insensitive form of A. thaliana CUC2 causes a radical breakdown of carpel fusion. Here, we investigate the role of the NAM/miR164 genetic module in carpel closure in monocarpous plants. We show that the disruption of this module in monocarpous flowers of A. thaliana aux1-22 mutants causes a failure of carpel closure, similar to the failure of carpel fusion observed in the wild-type genetic background. This observation suggested that closely related mechanisms may bring about carpel closure and carpel fusion, at least in A. thaliana. We therefore tested whether these mechanisms were conserved in a eurosid species that is monocarpous in its wild-type form. We observed that expression of MtNAM, the NAM ortholog in the monocarpous eurosid Medicago truncatula, decreases during carpel margin fusion, suggesting a role for the NAM/miR164 module in this process. We transformed M. truncatula with a miR164-resistant form of MtNAM and observed, among other phenotypes, incomplete carpel closure in the resulting transformants. These data confirm the underlying mechanistic similarity between carpel closure and carpel fusion which we observed in A. thaliana. Our observations suggest that the role of the NAM/miR164 module in the fusion of carpel margins has been conserved at least since the most recent common ancestor of the eurosid clade, and open the possibility that a similar mechanism may have been responsible for carpel closure at much earlier stages of angiosperm evolution. We combine our results with studies of early diverging angiosperms to speculate on the role of the NAM

  8. A Conserved Role for the NAM/miR164 Developmental Module Reveals a Common Mechanism Underlying Carpel Margin Fusion in Monocarpous and Syncarpous Eurosids.

    PubMed

    Vialette-Guiraud, Aurélie C M; Chauvet, Aurélie; Gutierrez-Mazariegos, Juliana; Eschstruth, Alexis; Ratet, Pascal; Scutt, Charles P

    2015-01-01

    The majority of angiosperms are syncarpous- their gynoecium is composed of two or more fused carpels. In Arabidopsis thaliana, this fusion is regulated through the balance of expression between CUP SHAPED COTYLEDON (CUC) genes, which are orthologs of the Petunia hybrida transcription factor NO APICAL MERISTEM (NAM), and their post-transcriptional regulator miR164. Accordingly, the expression of a miR164-insensitive form of A. thaliana CUC2 causes a radical breakdown of carpel fusion. Here, we investigate the role of the NAM/miR164 genetic module in carpel closure in monocarpous plants. We show that the disruption of this module in monocarpous flowers of A. thaliana aux1-22 mutants causes a failure of carpel closure, similar to the failure of carpel fusion observed in the wild-type genetic background. This observation suggested that closely related mechanisms may bring about carpel closure and carpel fusion, at least in A. thaliana. We therefore tested whether these mechanisms were conserved in a eurosid species that is monocarpous in its wild-type form. We observed that expression of MtNAM, the NAM ortholog in the monocarpous eurosid Medicago truncatula, decreases during carpel margin fusion, suggesting a role for the NAM/miR164 module in this process. We transformed M. truncatula with a miR164-resistant form of MtNAM and observed, among other phenotypes, incomplete carpel closure in the resulting transformants. These data confirm the underlying mechanistic similarity between carpel closure and carpel fusion which we observed in A. thaliana. Our observations suggest that the role of the NAM/miR164 module in the fusion of carpel margins has been conserved at least since the most recent common ancestor of the eurosid clade, and open the possibility that a similar mechanism may have been responsible for carpel closure at much earlier stages of angiosperm evolution. We combine our results with studies of early diverging angiosperms to speculate on the role of the NAM

  9. Novel insights into the relationships between dendritic cell subsets in human and mouse revealed by genome-wide expression profiling

    PubMed Central

    Robbins, Scott H; Walzer, Thierry; Dembélé, Doulaye; Thibault, Christelle; Defays, Axel; Bessou, Gilles; Xu, Huichun; Vivier, Eric; Sellars, MacLean; Pierre, Philippe; Sharp, Franck R; Chan, Susan; Kastner, Philippe; Dalod, Marc

    2008-01-01

    Background Dendritic cells (DCs) are a complex group of cells that play a critical role in vertebrate immunity. Lymph-node resident DCs (LN-DCs) are subdivided into conventional DC (cDC) subsets (CD11b and CD8α in mouse; BDCA1 and BDCA3 in human) and plasmacytoid DCs (pDCs). It is currently unclear if these various DC populations belong to a unique hematopoietic lineage and if the subsets identified in the mouse and human systems are evolutionary homologs. To gain novel insights into these questions, we sought conserved genetic signatures for LN-DCs and in vitro derived granulocyte-macrophage colony stimulating factor (GM-CSF) DCs through the analysis of a compendium of genome-wide expression profiles of mouse or human leukocytes. Results We show through clustering analysis that all LN-DC subsets form a distinct branch within the leukocyte family tree, and reveal a transcriptomal signature evolutionarily conserved in all LN-DC subsets. Moreover, we identify a large gene expression program shared between mouse and human pDCs, and smaller conserved profiles shared between mouse and human LN-cDC subsets. Importantly, most of these genes have not been previously associated with DC function and many have unknown functions. Finally, we use compendium analysis to re-evaluate the classification of interferon-producing killer DCs, lin-CD16+HLA-DR+ cells and in vitro derived GM-CSF DCs, and show that these cells are more closely linked to natural killer and myeloid cells, respectively. Conclusion Our study provides a unique database resource for future investigation of the evolutionarily conserved molecular pathways governing the ontogeny and functions of leukocyte subsets, especially DCs. PMID:18218067

  10. The Expression and Function of the Achaete-Scute Genes in Tribolium castaneum Reveals Conservation and Variation in Neural Pattern Formation and Cell Fate Specification

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wheeler, Scott R.; Carrico, Michelle L.; Wilson, Beth A.; Brown, Susan J.; Skeath, James B.

    2003-01-01

    SUMMARY The study of achaete-scute (ac/sc) genes has recently become a paradigm to understand the evolution and development of the arthropod nervous system. We describe the identification and characterization of the ache genes in the coleopteran insect species Tribolium castaneum. We have identified two Tribolium ache genes - achaete-scute homolog (Tc-ASH) a proneural gene and asense (Tc-ase) a neural precursor gene that reside in a gene complex. Focusing on the embryonic central nervous system we fmd that Tc-ASH is expressed in all neural precursors and the proneural clusters from which they segregate. Through RNAi and misexpression studies we show that Tc-ASH is necessary for neural precursor formation in Triboliurn and sufficient for neural precursor formation in Drosophila. Comparison of the function of the Drosophila and Triboliurn proneural ac/sc genes suggests that in the Drosophila lineage these genes have maintained their ancestral function in neural precursor formation and have acquired a new role in the fate specification of individual neural precursors. Furthermore, we find that Tc-use is expressed in all neural precursors suggesting an important and conserved role for asense genes in insect nervous system development. Our analysis of the Triboliurn ache genes indicates significant plasticity in gene number, expression and function, and implicates these modifications in the evolution of arthropod neural development.

  11. The expression and function of the achaete-scute genes in Tribolium castaneum reveals conservation and variation in neural pattern formation and cell fate specification

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wheeler, Scott R.; Carrico, Michelle L.; Wilson, Beth A.; Brown, Susan J.; Skeath, James B.

    2003-01-01

    The study of achaete-scute (ac/sc) genes has recently become a paradigm to understand the evolution and development of the arthropod nervous system. We describe the identification and characterization of the ac/sc genes in the coleopteran insect species Tribolium castaneum. We have identified two Tribolium ac/sc genes - achaete-scute homolog (Tc-ASH) a proneural gene and asense (Tc-ase) a neural precursor gene that reside in a gene complex. Focusing on the embryonic central nervous system we find that Tc-ASH is expressed in all neural precursors and the proneural clusters from which they segregate. Through RNAi and misexpression studies we show that Tc-ASH is necessary for neural precursor formation in Tribolium and sufficient for neural precursor formation in Drosophila. Comparison of the function of the Drosophila and Tribolium proneural ac/sc genes suggests that in the Drosophila lineage these genes have maintained their ancestral function in neural precursor formation and have acquired a new role in the fate specification of individual neural precursors. Furthermore, we find that Tc-ase is expressed in all neural precursors suggesting an important and conserved role for asense genes in insect nervous system development. Our analysis of the Tribolium ac/sc genes indicates significant plasticity in gene number, expression and function, and implicates these modifications in the evolution of arthropod neural development.

  12. Karyotype evolution in monitor lizards: cross-species chromosome mapping of cDNA reveals highly conserved synteny and gene order in the Toxicofera clade.

    PubMed

    Srikulnath, Kornsorn; Uno, Yoshinobu; Nishida, Chizuko; Matsuda, Yoichi

    2013-12-01

    The water monitor lizard (Varanus salvator macromaculatus (VSA), Platynota) has a chromosome number of 2n = 40: its karyotype consists of 16 macrochromosomes and 24 microchromosomes. To delineate the process of karyotype evolution in V. salvator macromaculatus, we constructed a cytogenetic map with 86 functional genes and compared it with those of the butterfly lizard (Leiolepis reevesii rubritaeniata (LRE); 2n = 36) and Japanese four-striped rat snake (Elaphe quadrivirgata (EQU); 2n = 36), members of the Toxicofera clade. The syntenies and gene orders of macrochromosomes were highly conserved between these species except for several chromosomal rearrangements: eight pairs of VSA macrochromosomes and/or chromosome arms exhibited homology with six pairs of LRE macrochromosomes and eight pairs of EQU macrochromosomes. Furthermore, the genes mapped to microchromosomes of three species were all located on chicken microchromosomes or chromosome 4p. No reciprocal translocations were found in the species, and their karyotypic differences were caused by: low frequencies of interchromosomal rearrangements, such as tandem fusions, or centric fissions/fusions between macrochromosomes and between macro- and microchromosomes; and intrachromosomal rearrangements, such as paracentric inversions or centromere repositioning. The chromosomal rearrangements that occurred in macrochromosomes of the Varanus lineage were also identified through comparative cytogenetic mapping of V. salvator macromaculatus and V. exanthematicus. Morphologic differences in chromosomes 6-8 between the two species could have resulted from pericentric inversion or centromere repositioning.

  13. Molecular characterization of LMW-GS genes in Brachypodium distachyon L. reveals highly conserved Glu-3 loci in Triticum and related species

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Brachypodium distachyon L. is a newly emerging model plant system for temperate cereal crop species. However, its grain protein compositions are still not clear. In the current study, we carried out a detailed proteomics and molecular genetics study on grain glutenin proteins in B. distachyon. Results SDS-PAGE and RP-HPLC analysis of grain proteins showed that Brachypodium has few gliadins and high molecular weight glutenin subunits. In contrast the electrophoretic patterns for the albumin, globulin and low molecular weight glutenin subunit (LMW-GS) fractions of the grain protein were similar to those in wheat. In particular, the LMW-C type subunits in Brachypodium were more abundant than the equivalent proteins in common wheat. Southern blotting analysis confirmed that Brachypodium has 4–5 copies of LMW-GS genes. A total of 18 LMW-GS genes were cloned from Brachypodium by allele specific PCR. LMW-GS and 4 deduced amino acid sequences were further confirmed by using Western-blotting and MALDI-TOF-MS. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that Brachypodium was closer to Ae. markgrafii and Ae. umbellulata than to T. aestivum. Conclusions Brachypodium possessed a highly conserved Glu-3 locus that is closely related to Triticum and related species. The presence of LMW-GS in B. distachyon grains indicates that B. distachyon may be used as a model system for studying wheat quality attributes. PMID:23171363

  14. The hot pepper (Capsicum annuum) microRNA transcriptome reveals novel and conserved targets: a foundation for understanding MicroRNA functional roles in hot pepper.

    PubMed

    Hwang, Dong-Gyu; Park, June Hyun; Lim, Jae Yun; Kim, Donghyun; Choi, Yourim; Kim, Soyoung; Reeves, Gregory; Yeom, Seon-In; Lee, Jeong-Soo; Park, Minkyu; Kim, Seungill; Choi, Ik-Young; Choi, Doil; Shin, Chanseok

    2013-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of non-coding RNAs approximately 21 nt in length which play important roles in regulating gene expression in plants. Although many miRNA studies have focused on a few model plants, miRNAs and their target genes remain largely unknown in hot pepper (Capsicum annuum), one of the most important crops cultivated worldwide. Here, we employed high-throughput sequencing technology to identify miRNAs in pepper extensively from 10 different libraries, including leaf, stem, root, flower, and six developmental stage fruits. Based on a bioinformatics pipeline, we successfully identified 29 and 35 families of conserved and novel miRNAs, respectively. Northern blot analysis was used to validate further the expression of representative miRNAs and to analyze their tissue-specific or developmental stage-specific expression patterns. Moreover, we computationally predicted miRNA targets, many of which were experimentally confirmed using 5' rapid amplification of cDNA ends analysis. One of the validated novel targets of miR-396 was a domain rearranged methyltransferase, the major de novo methylation enzyme, involved in RNA-directed DNA methylation in plants. This work provides the first reliable draft of the pepper miRNA transcriptome. It offers an expanded picture of pepper miRNAs in relation to other plants, providing a basis for understanding the functional roles of miRNAs in pepper.

  15. A systematic survey of conserved histidines in the core subunits of Photosystem I by site-directed mutagenesis reveals the likely axial ligands of P700.

    PubMed Central

    Redding, K; MacMillan, F; Leibl, W; Brettel, K; Hanley, J; Rutherford, A W; Breton, J; Rochaix, J D

    1998-01-01

    The Photosystem I complex catalyses the transfer of an electron from lumenal plastocyanin to stromal ferredoxin, using the energy of an absorbed photon. The initial photochemical event is the transfer of an electron from the excited state of P700, a pair of chlorophylls, to a monomer chlorophyll serving as the primary electron acceptor. We have performed a systematic survey of conserved histidines in the last six transmembrane segments of the related polytopic membrane proteins PsaA and PsaB in the green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. These histidines, which are present in analogous positions in both proteins, were changed to glutamine or leucine by site-directed mutagenesis. Double mutants in which both histidines had been changed to glutamine were screened for changes in the characteristics of P700 using electron paramagnetic resonance, Fourier transform infrared and visible spectroscopy. Only mutations in the histidines of helix 10 (PsaA-His676 and PsaB-His656) resulted in changes in spectroscopic properties of P700, leading us to conclude that these histidines are most likely the axial ligands to the P700 chlorophylls. PMID:9427740

  16. Analysis of TETRAKETIDE α-PYRONE REDUCTASE Function in Arabidopsis thaliana Reveals a Previously Unknown, but Conserved, Biochemical Pathway in Sporopollenin Monomer Biosynthesis[C][W

    PubMed Central

    Grienenberger, Etienne; Kim, Sung Soo; Lallemand, Benjamin; Geoffroy, Pierrette; Heintz, Dimitri; Souza, Clarice de Azevedo; Heitz, Thierry; Douglas, Carl J.; Legrand, Michel

    2010-01-01

    The precise structure of the sporopollenin polymer that is the major constituent of exine, the outer pollen wall, remains poorly understood. Recently, characterization of Arabidopsis thaliana genes and corresponding enzymes involved in exine formation has demonstrated the role of fatty acid derivatives as precursors of sporopollenin building units. Fatty acyl-CoA esters synthesized by ACYL-COA SYNTHETASE5 (ACOS5) are condensed with malonyl-CoA by POLYKETIDE SYNTHASE A (PKSA) and PKSB to yield α-pyrone polyketides required for exine formation. Here, we show that two closely related genes encoding oxidoreductases are specifically and transiently expressed in tapetal cells during microspore development in Arabidopsis anthers. Mutants compromised in expression of the reductases displayed a range of pollen exine layer defects, depending on the mutant allele. Phylogenetic studies indicated that the two reductases belong to a large reductase/dehydrogenase gene family and cluster in two distinct clades with putative orthologs from several angiosperm lineages and the moss Physcomitrella patens. Recombinant proteins produced in bacteria reduced the carbonyl function of tetraketide α-pyrone compounds synthesized by PKSA/B, and the proteins were therefore named TETRAKETIDE α-PYRONE REDUCTASE1 (TKPR1) and TKPR2 (previously called DRL1 and CCRL6, respectively). TKPR activities, together with those of ACOS5 and PKSA/B, identify a conserved biosynthetic pathway leading to hydroxylated α-pyrone compounds that were previously unknown to be sporopollenin precursors. PMID:21193572

  17. Genome-Wide Analysis of Stowaway-Like MITEs in Wheat Reveals High Sequence Conservation, Gene Association, and Genomic Diversification1[C][W

    PubMed Central

    Yaakov, Beery; Ben-David, Smadar; Kashkush, Khalil

    2013-01-01

    The diversity and evolution of wheat (Triticum-Aegilops group) genomes is determined, in part, by the activity of transposable elements that constitute a large fraction of the genome (up to 90%). In this study, we retrieved sequences from publicly available wheat databases, including a 454-pyrosequencing database, and analyzed 18,217 insertions of 18 Stowaway-like miniature inverted-repeat transposable element (MITE) families previously characterized in wheat that together account for approximately 1.3 Mb of sequence. All 18 families showed high conservation in length, sequence, and target site preference. Furthermore, approximately 55% of the elements were inserted in transcribed regions, into or near known wheat genes. Notably, we observed significant correlation between the mean length of the MITEs and their copy number. In addition, the genomic composition of nine MITE families was studied by real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction analysis in 40 accessions of Triticum spp. and Aegilops spp., including diploids, tetraploids, and hexaploids. The quantitative polymerase chain reaction data showed massive and significant intraspecific and interspecific variation as well as genome-specific proliferation and nonadditive quantities in the polyploids. We also observed significant differences in the methylation status of the insertion sites among MITE families. Our data thus suggest a possible role for MITEs in generating genome diversification and in the establishment of nascent polyploid species in wheat. PMID:23104862

  18. Ultra-deep sequencing of ribosome-associated poly-adenylated RNA in early Drosophila embryos reveals hundreds of conserved translated sORFs.

    PubMed

    Li, Hongmei; Hu, Chuansheng; Bai, Ling; Li, Hua; Li, Mingfa; Zhao, Xiaodong; Czajkowsky, Daniel M; Shao, Zhifeng

    2016-12-01

    There is growing recognition that small open reading frames (sORFs) encoding peptides shorter than 100 amino acids are an important class of functional elements in the eukaryotic genome, with several already identified to play critical roles in growth, development, and disease. However, our understanding of their biological importance has been hindered owing to the significant technical challenges limiting their annotation. Here we combined ultra-deep sequencing of ribosome-associated poly-adenylated RNAs with rigorous conservation analysis to identify a comprehensive population of translated sORFs during early Drosophila embryogenesis. In total, we identify 399 sORFs, including those previously annotated but without evidence of translational capacity, those found within transcripts previously classified as non-coding, and those not previously known to be transcribed. Further, we find, for the first time, evidence for translation of many sORFs with different isoforms, suggesting their regulation is as complex as longer ORFs. Furthermore, many sORFs are found not associated with ribosomes in late-stage Drosophila S2 cells, suggesting that many of the translated sORFs may have stage-specific functions during embryogenesis. These results thus provide the first comprehensive annotation of the sORFs present during early Drosophila embryogenesis, a necessary basis for a detailed delineation of their function in embryogenesis and other biological processes.

  19. Three-dimensional reconstructions of the bacteriophage CUS-3 virion reveal a conserved coat protein I-domain but a distinct tailspike receptor-binding domain

    SciTech Connect

    Parent, Kristin N.; Tang, Jinghua; Cardone, Giovanni; Gilcrease, Eddie B.; Janssen, Mandy E.; Olson, Norman H.; Casjens, Sherwood R.; Baker, Timothy S.

    2014-09-15

    CUS-3 is a short-tailed, dsDNA bacteriophage that infects serotype K1 Escherichia coli. We report icosahedrally averaged and asymmetric, three-dimensional, cryo-electron microscopic reconstructions of the CUS-3 virion. Its coat protein structure adopts the “HK97-fold” shared by other tailed phages and is quite similar to that in phages P22 and Sf6 despite only weak amino acid sequence similarity. In addition, these coat proteins share a unique extra external domain (“I-domain”), suggesting that the group of P22-like phages has evolved over a very long time period without acquiring a new coat protein gene from another phage group. On the other hand, the morphology of the CUS-3 tailspike differs significantly from that of P22 or Sf6, but is similar to the tailspike of phage K1F, a member of the extremely distantly related T7 group of phages. We conclude that CUS-3 obtained its tailspike gene from a distantly related phage quite recently. - Highlights: • Asymmetric and symmetric three-dimensional reconstructions of phage CUS-3 are presented. • CUS-3 major capsid protein has a conserved I-domain, which is found in all three categories of “P22-like phage”. • CUS-3 has very different tailspike receptor binding domain from those of P22 and Sf6. • The CUS-3 tailspike likely was acquired by horizontal gene transfer.

  20. Differential conservation of transcriptional domains of mammalian Prophet of Pit-1 proteins revealed by structural studies of the bovine gene and comparative functional analysis of the protein.

    PubMed

    Showalter, Aaron D; Smith, Timothy P L; Bennett, Gary L; Sloop, Kyle W; Whitsett, Julie A; Rhodes, Simon J

    2002-05-29

    The Prophet of Pit-1 (PROP1) gene encodes a paired class homeodomain transcription factor that is exclusively expressed in the developing mammalian pituitary gland. PROP1 function is essential for anterior pituitary organogenesis, and heritable mutations in the gene are associated with combined pituitary hormone deficiency in human patients and animals. By cloning the bovine PROP1 gene and by comparative analysis, we demonstrate that the homeodomains and carboxyl termini of mammalian PROP1 proteins are highly conserved while the amino termini are diverged. Whereas the carboxyl termini of the human and bovine PROP1 proteins contain potent transcriptional activation domains, the amino termini and homeodomains have repressive activities. The bovine PROP1 gene has four exons and three introns and maps to a region of chromosome seven carrying a quantitative trait locus affecting ovulation rate. Two alleles of the bovine gene were found that encode distinct protein products with different DNA binding and transcriptional activities. These experiments demonstrate that mammalian PROP1 genes encode proteins with complex regulatory capacities and that modest changes in protein sequence can significantly alter the activity of this pituitary developmental transcription factor.

  1. Conserved regulation of the Hansenula polymorpha MOX promoter in Saccharomyces cerevisiae reveals insights in the transcriptional activation by Adr1p.

    PubMed

    Pereira, G G; Hollenberg, C P

    1996-05-15

    The Hansenula polymorpha MOX gene encodes a peroxisomal enzyme that catalyzes the first step of the highly specialized methanol metabolism. MOX is strongly transcribed in cells growing in methanol and completely repressed in glucose. We show here that the MOX promoter confers a glucose-repressible expression upon a lacZ reporter gene in Saccharomyces cerevisiae, an unrelated yeast species that lacks the methanol metabolism. Repression was mediated by a 200-bp region of the MOX promoter, termed MOX-B, and was counteracted by Adr1p, a transcription factor involved in the derepression of S. cerevisiae genes encoding peroxisomal proteins, the class to which MOX belongs. Binding of Adr1p to MOX-B was demonstrated by gel retardation and DNaseI-footprinting, and Adr1p was shown to interact with a DNA region containing only a half of the putative Adr1p consensus binding site. Our findings suggest that Adr1p is a conserved regulator for genes encoding peroxisomal proteins at least in other yeast species, and that its interaction with the DNA is dependent on the promoter context.

  2. Structural and functional studies of titin's fn3 modules reveal conserved surface patterns and binding to myosin S1--a possible role in the Frank-Starling mechanism of the heart.

    PubMed

    Muhle-Goll, C; Habeck, M; Cazorla, O; Nilges, M; Labeit, S; Granzier, H

    2001-10-19

    The A-band part of titin, a striated-muscle specific protein spanning from the Z-line to the M-line, mainly consists of a well-ordered super-repeat array of immunoglobulin-like and fibronectin-type III (fn3)-like domains. Since it has been suspected that the fn3 domains might represent titin's binding sites to myosin, we have developed structural models for all of titin's 132 fn3-like domains. A subset of eight experimentally determined fn3 structures from a range of proteins, including titin itself, was used as homology templates. After grouping the models according to their position within the super-repeat segment of the central A-band titin region, we analyzed the models with respect to side-chain conservation. This showed that conserved residues form an extensive surface pattern predominantly at one side of the domains, whereas domains outside the central C-zone super-repeat region show generally less conserved surfaces. Since the conserved surface residues may function as protein-binding sites, we experimentally studied the binding properties of expressed multi-domain fn3 fragments. This revealed that fn3 fragments specifically bind to the sub-fragment 1 of myosin. We also measured the effect of fn3 fragments on the contractile properties of single cardiac myocytes. At sub-maximal Ca(2+) concentrations, fn3 fragments significantly enhance active tension. This effect is most pronounced at short sarcomere length, and as a result the length-dependence of Ca(2+) activation is reduced. A model of how titin's fn3-like domains may influence actomyosin interaction is proposed.

  3. Metabolic flux ratio analysis and multi-objective optimization revealed a globally conserved and coordinated metabolic response of E. coli to paraquat-induced oxidative stress.

    PubMed

    Shen, Tie; Rui, Bin; Zhou, Hong; Zhang, Ximing; Yi, Yin; Wen, Han; Zheng, Haoran; Wu, Jihui; Shi, Yunyu

    2013-01-27

    . coli to paraquat-induced oxidative stress is globally conserved and coordinated.

  4. Novel low abundance and transient RNAs in yeast revealed by tiling microarrays and ultra high-throughput sequencing are not conserved across closely related yeast species.

    PubMed

    Lee, Albert; Hansen, Kasper Daniel; Bullard, James; Dudoit, Sandrine; Sherlock, Gavin

    2008-12-01

    A complete description of the transcriptome of an organism is crucial for a comprehensive understanding of how it functions and how its transcriptional networks are controlled, and may provide insights into the organism's evolution. Despite the status of Saccharomyces cerevisiae as arguably the most well-studied model eukaryote, we still do not have a full catalog or understanding of all its genes. In order to interrogate the transcriptome of S. cerevisiae for low abundance or rapidly turned over transcripts, we deleted elements of the RNA degradation machinery with the goal of preferentially increasing the relative abundance of such transcripts. We then used high-resolution tiling microarrays and ultra high-throughput sequencing (UHTS) to identify, map, and validate unannotated transcripts that are more abundant in the RNA degradation mutants relative to wild-type cells. We identified 365 currently unannotated transcripts, the majority presumably representing low abundance or short-lived RNAs, of which 185 are previously unknown and unique to this study. It is likely that many of these are cryptic unstable transcripts (CUTs), which are rapidly degraded and whose function(s) within the cell are still unclear, while others may be novel functional transcripts. Of the 185 transcripts we identified as novel to our study, greater than 80 percent come from regions of the genome that have lower conservation scores amongst closely related yeast species than 85 percent of the verified ORFs in S. cerevisiae. Such regions of the genome have typically been less well-studied, and by definition transcripts from these regions will distinguish S. cerevisiae from these closely related species.

  5. Divergence patterns of genic copy number variation in natural populations of the house mouse (Mus musculus domesticus) reveal three conserved genes with major population-specific expansions.

    PubMed

    Pezer, Željka; Harr, Bettina; Teschke, Meike; Babiker, Hiba; Tautz, Diethard

    2015-08-01

    Copy number variation represents a major source of genetic divergence, yet the evolutionary dynamics of genic copy number variation in natural populations during differentiation and adaptation remain unclear. We applied a read depth approach to genome resequencing data to detect copy number variants (CNVs) ≥1 kb in wild-caught mice belonging to four populations of Mus musculus domesticus. We complemented the bioinformatics analyses with experimental validation using droplet digital PCR. The specific focus of our analysis is CNVs that include complete genes, as these CNVs could be expected to contribute most directly to evolutionary divergence. In total, 1863 transcription units appear to be completely encompassed within CNVs in at least one individual when compared to the reference assembly. Further, 179 of these CNVs show population-specific copy number differences, and 325 are subject to complete deletion in multiple individuals. Among the most copy-number variable genes are three highly conserved genes that encode the splicing factor CWC22, the spindle protein SFI1, and the Holliday junction recognition protein HJURP. These genes exhibit population-specific expansion patterns that suggest involvement in local adaptations. We found that genes that overlap with large segmental duplications are generally more copy-number variable. These genes encode proteins that are relevant for environmental and behavioral interactions, such as vomeronasal and olfactory receptors, as well as major urinary proteins and several proteins of unknown function. The overall analysis shows that genic CNVs contribute more to population differentiation in mice than in humans and may promote and speed up population divergence.

  6. Divergence patterns of genic copy number variation in natural populations of the house mouse (Mus musculus domesticus) reveal three conserved genes with major population-specific expansions

    PubMed Central

    Pezer, Željka; Harr, Bettina; Teschke, Meike; Babiker, Hiba; Tautz, Diethard

    2015-01-01

    Copy number variation represents a major source of genetic divergence, yet the evolutionary dynamics of genic copy number variation in natural populations during differentiation and adaptation remain unclear. We applied a read depth approach to genome resequencing data to detect copy number variants (CNVs) ≥1 kb in wild-caught mice belonging to four populations of Mus musculus domesticus. We complemented the bioinformatics analyses with experimental validation using droplet digital PCR. The specific focus of our analysis is CNVs that include complete genes, as these CNVs could be expected to contribute most directly to evolutionary divergence. In total, 1863 transcription units appear to be completely encompassed within CNVs in at least one individual when compared to the reference assembly. Further, 179 of these CNVs show population-specific copy number differences, and 325 are subject to complete deletion in multiple individuals. Among the most copy-number variable genes are three highly conserved genes that encode the splicing factor CWC22, the spindle protein SFI1, and the Holliday junction recognition protein HJURP. These genes exhibit population-specific expansion patterns that suggest involvement in local adaptations. We found that genes that overlap with large segmental duplications are generally more copy-number variable. These genes encode proteins that are relevant for environmental and behavioral interactions, such as vomeronasal and olfactory receptors, as well as major urinary proteins and several proteins of unknown function. The overall analysis shows that genic CNVs contribute more to population differentiation in mice than in humans and may promote and speed up population divergence. PMID:26149421

  7. Cross-disease comparison of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and spinal muscular atrophy reveals conservation of selective vulnerability but differential neuromuscular junction pathology.

    PubMed

    Comley, Laura H; Nijssen, Jik; Frost-Nylen, Johanna; Hedlund, Eva

    2016-05-01

    Neuromuscular junctions are primary pathological targets in the lethal motor neuron diseases spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Synaptic pathology and denervation of target muscle fibers has been reported prior to the appearance of clinical symptoms in mouse models of both diseases, suggesting that neuromuscular junctions are highly vulnerable from the very early stages, and are a key target for therapeutic intervention. Here we examined neuromuscular pathology longitudinally in three clinically relevant muscle groups in mouse models of ALS and SMA in order to assess their relative vulnerabilities. We show for the first time that neuromuscular junctions of the extraocular muscles (responsible for the control of eye movement) were resistant to degeneration in endstage SMA mice, as well as in late symptomatic ALS mice. Tongue muscle neuromuscular junctions were also spared in both animal models. Conversely, neuromuscular junctions of the lumbrical muscles of the hind-paw were vulnerable in both SMA and ALS, with a loss of neuronal innervation and shrinkage of motor endplates in both diseases. Thus, the pattern of selective vulnerability was conserved across these two models of motor neuron disease. However, the first evidence of neuromuscular pathology occurred at different timepoints of disease progression, with much earlier evidence of presynaptic involvement in ALS, progressing to changes on the postsynaptic side. Conversely, in SMA changes appeared concomitantly at the neuromuscular junction, suggesting that mechanisms of neuromuscular disruption are distinct in these diseases. J. Comp. Neurol. 524:1424-1442, 2016. © 2015 The Authors The Journal of Comparative Neurology Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  8. Fourier Analysis of Conservation Patterns in Protein Secondary Structure.

    PubMed

    Palaniappan, Ashok; Jakobsson, Eric

    2017-01-01

    Residue conservation is a common observation in alignments of protein families, underscoring positions important in protein structure and function. Though many methods measure the level of conservation of particular residue positions, currently we do not have a way to study spatial oscillations occurring in protein conservation patterns. It is known that hydrophobicity shows spatial oscillations in proteins, which is characterized by computing the hydrophobic moment of the protein domains. Here, we advance the study of moments of conservation of protein families to know whether there might exist spatial asymmetry in the conservation patterns of regular secondary structures. Analogous to the hydrophobic moment, the conservation moment is defined as the modulus of the Fourier transform of the conservation function of an alignment of related protein, where the conservation function is the vector of conservation values at each column of the alignment. The profile of the conservation moment is useful in ascertaining any periodicity of conservation, which might correlate with the period of the secondary structure. To demonstrate the concept, conservation in the family of potassium ion channel proteins was analyzed using moments. It was shown that the pore helix of the potassium channel showed oscillations in the moment of conservation matching the period of the α-helix. This implied that one side of the pore helix was evolutionarily conserved in contrast to its opposite side. In addition, the method of conservation moments correctly identified the disposition of the voltage sensor of voltage-gated potassium channels to form a 310 helix in the membrane.

  9. Evolutionary stability of mutualism: interspecific population regulation as an evolutionarily stable strategy

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Holland, J. Nathaniel; DeAngelis, Donald L.; Schultz, Stewart T.

    2004-01-01

    Interspecific mutualisms are often vulnerable to instability because low benefit : cost ratios can rapidly lead to extinction or to the conversion of mutualism to parasite–host or predator–prey interactions. We hypothesize that the evolutionary stability of mutualism can depend on how benefits and costs to one mutualist vary with the population density of its partner, and that stability can be maintained if a mutualist can influence demographic rates and regulate the population density of its partner. We test this hypothesis in a model of mutualism with key features of senita cactus (Pachycereus schottii) – senita moth (Upiga virescens) interactions, in which benefits of pollination and costs of larval seed consumption to plant fitness depend on pollinator density. We show that plants can maximize their fitness by allocating resources to the production of excess flowers at the expense of fruit. Fruit abortion resulting from excess flower production reduces pre–adult survival of the pollinating seed–consumer, and maintains its density beneath a threshold that would destabilize the mutualism. Such a strategy of excess flower production and fruit abortion is convergent and evolutionarily stable against invasion by cheater plants that produce few flowers and abort few to no fruit. This novel mechanism of achieving evolutionarily stable mutualism, namely interspecific population regulation, is qualitatively different from other mechanisms invoking partner choice or selective rewards, and may be a general process that helps to preserve mutualistic interactions in nature.

  10. The lateral line confers evolutionarily derived sleep loss in the Mexican cavefish.

    PubMed

    Jaggard, James; Robinson, Beatriz G; Stahl, Bethany A; Oh, Ian; Masek, Pavel; Yoshizawa, Masato; Keene, Alex C

    2017-01-15

    Sleep is an essential behavior exhibited by nearly all animals, and disruption of this process is associated with an array of physiological and behavioral deficits. Sleep is defined by changes in sensory gating that reduce sensory input to the brain, but little is known about the neural basis for interactions between sleep and sensory processing. Blind Mexican cavefish comprise an extant surface dwelling form and 29 cave morphs that have independently evolved increased numbers of mechanoreceptive lateral line neuromasts and convergent evolution of sleep loss. Ablation of the lateral line enhanced sleep in the Pachón cavefish population, suggesting that heightened sensory input underlies evolutionarily derived sleep loss. Targeted lateral line ablation and behavioral analysis localized the wake-promoting neuromasts in Pachón cavefish to superficial neuromasts of the trunk and cranial regions. Strikingly, lateral line ablation did not affect sleep in four other cavefish populations, suggesting that distinct neural mechanisms regulate the evolution of sleep loss in independently derived cavefish populations. Cavefish are subject to seasonal changes in food availability, raising the possibility that sensory modulation of sleep is influenced by metabolic state. We found that starvation promotes sleep in Pachón cavefish, and is not enhanced by lateral line ablation, suggesting that functional interactions occur between sensory and metabolic regulation of sleep. Taken together, these findings support a model where sensory processing contributes to evolutionarily derived changes in sleep that are modulated in accordance with food availability.

  11. Crossing to safety: dispersal, colonization and mate choice in evolutionarily distinct populations of Steller sea lions, Eumetopias jubatus.

    PubMed

    O'Corry-Crowe, Greg; Gelatt, Tom; Rea, Lorrie; Bonin, Carolina; Rehberg, Michael

    2014-11-01

    Population growth typically involves range expansion and establishment of new breeding sites, while the opposite occurs during declines. Although density dependence is widely invoked in theoretical studies of emigration and colonization in expanding populations, few empirical studies have documented the mechanisms. Still fewer have documented the direction and mechanisms of individual transfer in declining populations. Here, we screen large numbers of pups sampled on their natal rookeries for variation in mtDNA (n = 1106) and 16 microsatellite loci (n = 588) and show that new Steller sea lion breeding sites did not follow the typical paradigm and were instead colonized by sea lions from both a declining (Endangered) population and an increasing population. Dispersing individuals colonized rookeries in the distributional hiatus between two evolutionarily distinct (Φ¯(st) = 0.222, R¯(st) = 0.053, K = 2) metapopulations recently described as separate subspecies. Hardy-Weinberg, mixed-stock and relatedness analysis revealed levels of interbreeding on the new rookeries that exclude (i) assortative mating among eastern and western forms, and (ii) inbreeding avoidance as primary motivations for dispersal. Positive and negative density dependence is implicated in both cases of individual transfer. Migration distance limits, and conspecific attraction and performance likely influenced the sequence of rookery colonizations. This study demonstrates that resource limitation may trigger an exodus of breeding animals from declining populations, with substantial impacts on distribution and patterns of genetic variation. It also revealed that this event is rare because colonists dispersed across an evolutionary boundary, suggesting that the causative factors behind recent declines are unusual or of larger magnitude than normally occur.

  12. CORECLUST: identification of the conserved CRM grammar together with prediction of gene regulation.

    PubMed

    Nikulova, Anna A; Favorov, Alexander V; Sutormin, Roman A; Makeev, Vsevolod J; Mironov, Andrey A

    2012-07-01

    Identification of transcriptional regulatory regions and tracing their internal organization are important for understanding the eukaryotic cell machinery. Cis-regulatory modules (CRMs) of higher eukaryotes are believed to possess a regulatory 'grammar', or preferred arrangement of binding sites, that is crucial for proper regulation and thus tends to be evolutionarily conserved. Here, we present a method CORECLUST (COnservative REgulatory CLUster STructure) that predicts CRMs based on a set of positional weight matrices. Given regulatory regions of orthologous and/or co-regulated genes, CORECLUST constructs a CRM model by revealing the conserved rules that describe the relative location of binding sites. The constructed model may be consequently used for the genome-wide prediction of similar CRMs, and thus detection of co-regulated genes, and for the investigation of the regulatory grammar of the system. Compared with related methods, CORECLUST shows better performance at identification of CRMs conferring muscle-specific gene expression in vertebrates and early-developmental CRMs in Drosophila.

  13. Biochemical and structural characterizations of two Dictyostelium cellobiohydrolases from the amoebozoa kingdom reveal a high level of conservation between distant phylogenetic trees of life

    SciTech Connect

    Hobdey, Sarah E.; Knott, Brandon C.; Momeni, Majid Haddad; Taylor, II, Larry E.; Borisova, Anna S.; Podkaminer, Kara K.; VanderWall, Todd A.; Himmel, Michael E.; Decker, Stephen R.; Beckham, Gregg T.; Stahlberg, Jerry

    2016-04-01

    Glycoside hydrolase family 7 (GH7) cellobiohydrolases (CBHs) are enzymes often employed in plant cell wall degradation across eukaryotic kingdoms of life, as they provide significant hydrolytic potential in cellulose turnover. To date, many fungal GH7 CBHs have been examined, yet many questions regarding structure-activity relationships in these important natural and commercial enzymes remain. Here, we present the crystal structures and a biochemical analysis of two GH7 CBHs from social amoeba: Dictyostelium discoideum Cel7A (DdiCel7A) and Dictyostelium purpureum Cel7A (DpuCel7A). DdiCel7A and DpuCel7A natively consist of a catalytic domain and do not exhibit a carbohydrate-binding module (CBM). The structures of DdiCel7A and DpuCel7A, resolved to 2.1 Å and 2.7 Å, respectively, are homologous to those of other GH7 CBHs with an enclosed active-site tunnel. Two primary differences between the Dictyostelium CBHs and the archetypal model GH7 CBH, Trichoderma reesei Cel7A (TreCel7A), occur near the hydrolytic active site and the product-binding sites. To compare the activities of these enzymes with the activity of TreCel7A, the family 1 TreCel7A CBM and linker were added to the C terminus of each of the Dictyostelium enzymes, creating DdiCel7ACBM and DpuCel7ACBM, which were recombinantly expressed in T. reesei. DdiCel7ACBM and DpuCel7ACBM hydrolyzed Avicel, pretreated corn stover, and phosphoric acid-swollen cellulose as efficiently as TreCel7A when hydrolysis was compared at their temperature optima. The Ki of cellobiose was significantly higher for DdiCel7ACBM and DpuCel7ACBM than for TreCel7A: 205, 130, and 29 μM, respectively. Finally, taken together, the present study highlights the remarkable degree of conservation of the activity of these key natural and industrial enzymes across quite distant phylogenetic trees of life.

  14. Biochemical and structural characterizations of two Dictyostelium cellobiohydrolases from the amoebozoa kingdom reveal a high level of conservation between distant phylogenetic trees of life

    DOE PAGES

    Hobdey, Sarah E.; Knott, Brandon C.; Momeni, Majid Haddad; ...

    2016-04-01

    Glycoside hydrolase family 7 (GH7) cellobiohydrolases (CBHs) are enzymes often employed in plant cell wall degradation across eukaryotic kingdoms of life, as they provide significant hydrolytic potential in cellulose turnover. To date, many fungal GH7 CBHs have been examined, yet many questions regarding structure-activity relationships in these important natural and commercial enzymes remain. Here, we present the crystal structures and a biochemical analysis of two GH7 CBHs from social amoeba: Dictyostelium discoideum Cel7A (DdiCel7A) and Dictyostelium purpureum Cel7A (DpuCel7A). DdiCel7A and DpuCel7A natively consist of a catalytic domain and do not exhibit a carbohydrate-binding module (CBM). The structures of DdiCel7Amore » and DpuCel7A, resolved to 2.1 Å and 2.7 Å, respectively, are homologous to those of other GH7 CBHs with an enclosed active-site tunnel. Two primary differences between the Dictyostelium CBHs and the archetypal model GH7 CBH, Trichoderma reesei Cel7A (TreCel7A), occur near the hydrolytic active site and the product-binding sites. To compare the activities of these enzymes with the activity of TreCel7A, the family 1 TreCel7A CBM and linker were added to the C terminus of each of the Dictyostelium enzymes, creating DdiCel7ACBM and DpuCel7ACBM, which were recombinantly expressed in T. reesei. DdiCel7ACBM and DpuCel7ACBM hydrolyzed Avicel, pretreated corn stover, and phosphoric acid-swollen cellulose as efficiently as TreCel7A when hydrolysis was compared at their temperature optima. The Ki of cellobiose was significantly higher for DdiCel7ACBM and DpuCel7ACBM than for TreCel7A: 205, 130, and 29 μM, respectively. Finally, taken together, the present study highlights the remarkable degree of conservation of the activity of these key natural and industrial enzymes across quite distant phylogenetic trees of life.« less

  15. Visualization of a substrate-induced productive conformation of the catalytic triad of the Neisseria meningitidis peptidoglycan O-acetylesterase reveals mechanistic conservation in SGNH esterase family members

    PubMed Central

    Williams, Allison H.; Veyrier, Frédéric J.; Bonis, Mathilde; Michaud, Yann; Raynal, Bertrand; Taha, Muhamed-Kheir; White, Stephen W.; Haouz, Ahmed; Boneca, Ivo G.

    2014-01-01

    Peptidoglycan O-acetylesterase (Ape1), which is required for host survival in Neisseria sp., belongs to the diverse SGNH hydrolase superfamily, which includes important viral and bacterial virulence factors. Here, multi-domain crystal structures of Ape1 with an SGNH catalytic domain and a newly identified putative peptidoglycan-detection module are reported. Enzyme catalysis was performed in Ape1 crystals and key catalytic intermediates along the SGNH esterase hydrolysis reaction pathway were visualized, revealing a substrate-induced productive conformation of the catalytic triad, a mechanistic detail that has not previously been observed. This substrate-induced productive conformation of the catalytic triad shifts the established dogma on these enzymes, generating valuable insight into the structure-based design of drugs targeting the SGNH esterase superfamily. PMID:25286847

  16. Functional dissection of the ash2 and ash1 transcriptomes provides insights into the transcriptional basis of wing phenotypes and reveals conserved protein interactions

    PubMed Central

    Beltran, Sergi; Angulo, Mireia; Pignatelli, Miguel; Serras, Florenci; Corominas, Montserrat

    2007-01-01

    Background The trithorax group (trxG) genes absent, small or homeotic discs 1 (ash1) and 2 (ash2) were isolated in a screen for mutants with abnormal imaginal discs. Mutations in either gene cause homeotic transformations but Hox genes are not their only targets. Although analysis of double mutants revealed that ash2 and ash1 mutations enhance each other's phenotypes, suggesting they are functionally related, it was shown that these proteins are subunits of distinct complexes. Results The analysis of wing imaginal disc transcriptomes from ash2 and ash1 mutants showed that they are highly similar. Functional annotation of regulated genes using Gene Ontology allowed identification of severely affected groups of genes that could be correlated to the wing phenotypes observed. Comparison of the differentially expressed genes with those from other genome-wide analyses revealed similarities between ASH2 and Sin3A, suggesting a putative functional relationship. Coimmunoprecipitation studies and immunolocalization on polytene chromosomes demonstrated that ASH2 and Sin3A interact with HCF (host-cell factor). The results of nucleosome western blots and clonal analysis indicated that ASH2 is necessary for trimethylation of the Lys4 on histone 3 (H3K4). Conclusion The similarity between the transcriptomes of ash2 and ash1 mutants supports a model in which the two genes act together to maintain stable states of transcription. Like in humans, both ASH2 and Sin3A bind HCF. Finally, the reduction of H3K4 trimethylation in ash2 mutants is the first evidence in Drosophila regarding the molecular function of this trxG gene. PMID:17466076

  17. Evolutionary and Functional Analysis of Old World Primate TRIM5 Reveals the Ancient Emergence of Primate Lentiviruses and Convergent Evolution Targeting a Conserved Capsid Interface

    PubMed Central

    McCarthy, Kevin R.; Kirmaier, Andrea; Autissier, Patrick; Johnson, Welkin E.

    2015-01-01

    The widespread distribution of lentiviruses among African primates, and the lack of severe pathogenesis in many of these natural reservoirs, are taken as evidence for long-term co-evolution between the simian immunodeficiency viruses (SIVs) and their primate hosts. Evidence for positive selection acting on antiviral restriction factors is consistent with virus-host interactions spanning millions of years of primate evolution. However, many restriction mechanisms are not virus-specific, and selection cannot be unambiguously attributed to any one type of virus. We hypothesized that the restriction factor TRIM5, because of its unique specificity for retrovirus capsids, should accumulate adaptive changes in a virus-specific fashion, and therefore, that phylogenetic reconstruction of TRIM5 evolution in African primates should reveal selection by lentiviruses closely related to modern SIVs. We analyzed complete TRIM5 coding sequences of 22 Old World primates and identified a tightly-spaced cluster of branch-specific adaptions appearing in the Cercopithecinae lineage after divergence from the Colobinae around 16 million years ago. Functional assays of both extant TRIM5 orthologs and reconstructed ancestral TRIM5 proteins revealed that this cluster of adaptations in TRIM5 specifically resulted in the ability to restrict Cercopithecine lentiviruses, but had no effect (positive or negative) on restriction of other retroviruses, including lentiviruses of non-Cercopithecine primates. The correlation between lineage-specific adaptations and ability to restrict viruses endemic to the same hosts supports the hypothesis that lentiviruses closely related to modern SIVs were present in Africa and infecting the ancestors of Cercopithecine primates as far back as 16 million years ago, and provides insight into the evolution of TRIM5 specificity. PMID:26291613

  18. Collections Conservation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    DeCandido, Robert

    Collections conservation is an approach to the preservation treatment of books and book-like materials that is conceptualized and organized in terms of large groups of materials. This guide is intended to enable a library to evaluate its current collections conservation activities. The introduction describes collections conservation and gives…

  19. Conservation of small RNA pathways in platypus.

    PubMed

    Murchison, Elizabeth P; Kheradpour, Pouya; Sachidanandam, Ravi; Smith, Carly; Hodges, Emily; Xuan, Zhenyu; Kellis, Manolis; Grützner, Frank; Stark, Alexander; Hannon, Gregory J

    2008-06-01

    Small RNA pathways play evolutionarily conserved roles in gene regulation and defense from parasitic nucleic acids. The character and expression patterns of small RNAs show conservation throughout animal lineages, but specific animal clades also show variations on these recurring themes, including species-specific small RNAs. The monotremes, with only platypus and four species of echidna as extant members, represent the basal branch of the mammalian lineage. Here, we examine the small RNA pathways of monotremes by deep sequencing of six platypus and echidna tissues. We find that highly conserved microRNA species display their signature tissue-specific expression patterns. In addition, we find a large rapidly evolving cluster of microRNAs on platypus chromosome X1, which is unique to monotremes. Platypus and echidna testes contain a robust Piwi-interacting (piRNA) system, which appears to be participating in ongoing transposon defense.

  20. Conservation of small RNA pathways in platypus

    PubMed Central

    Murchison, Elizabeth P.; Kheradpour, Pouya; Sachidanandam, Ravi; Smith, Carly; Hodges, Emily; Xuan, Zhenyu; Kellis, Manolis; Grützner, Frank; Stark, Alexander; Hannon, Gregory J.

    2008-01-01

    Small RNA pathways play evolutionarily conserved roles in gene regulation and defense from parasitic nucleic acids. The character and expression patterns of small RNAs show conservation throughout animal lineages, but specific animal clades also show variations on these recurring themes, including species-specific small RNAs. The monotremes, with only platypus and four species of echidna as extant members, represent the basal branch of the mammalian lineage. Here, we examine the small RNA pathways of monotremes by deep sequencing of six platypus and echidna tissues. We find that highly conserved microRNA species display their signature tissue-specific expression patterns. In addition, we find a large rapidly evolving cluster of microRNAs on platypus chromosome X1, which is unique to monotremes. Platypus and echidna testes contain a robust Piwi-interacting (piRNA) system, which appears to be participating in ongoing transposon defense. PMID:18463306

  1. Biochemical and Structural Characterizations of Two Dictyostelium Cellobiohydrolases from the Amoebozoa Kingdom Reveal a High Level of Conservation between Distant Phylogenetic Trees of Life

    PubMed Central

    Hobdey, Sarah E.; Knott, Brandon C.; Haddad Momeni, Majid; Taylor, Larry E.; Borisova, Anna S.; Podkaminer, Kara K.; VanderWall, Todd A.; Himmel, Michael E.; Decker, Stephen R.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Glycoside hydrolase family 7 (GH7) cellobiohydrolases (CBHs) are enzymes commonly employed in plant cell wall degradation across eukaryotic kingdoms of life, as they provide significant hydrolytic potential in cellulose turnover. To date, many fungal GH7 CBHs have been examined, yet many questions regarding structure-activity relationships in these important natural and commercial enzymes remain. Here, we present the crystal structures and a biochemical analysis of two GH7 CBHs from social amoeba: Dictyostelium discoideum Cel7A (DdiCel7A) and Dictyostelium purpureum Cel7A (DpuCel7A). DdiCel7A and DpuCel7A natively consist of a catalytic domain and do not exhibit a carbohydrate-binding module (CBM). The structures of DdiCel7A and DpuCel7A, resolved to 2.1 Å and 2.7 Å, respectively, are homologous to those of other GH7 CBHs with an enclosed active-site tunnel. Two primary differences between the Dictyostelium CBHs and the archetypal model GH7 CBH, Trichoderma reesei Cel7A (TreCel7A), occur near the hydrolytic active site and the product-binding sites. To compare the activities of these enzymes with the activity of TreCel7A, the family 1 TreCel7A CBM and linker were added to the C terminus of each of the Dictyostelium enzymes, creating DdiCel7ACBM and DpuCel7ACBM, which were recombinantly expressed in T. reesei. DdiCel7ACBM and DpuCel7ACBM hydrolyzed Avicel, pretreated corn stover, and phosphoric acid-swollen cellulose as efficiently as TreCel7A when hydrolysis was compared at their temperature optima. The Ki of cellobiose was significantly higher for DdiCel7ACBM and DpuCel7ACBM than for TreCel7A: 205, 130, and 29 μM, respectively. Taken together, the present study highlights the remarkable degree of conservation of the activity of these key natural and industrial enzymes across quite distant phylogenetic trees of life. IMPORTANCE GH7 CBHs are among the most important cellulolytic enzymes both in nature and for emerging industrial applications for

  2. Structure of a conserved hypothetical protein SA1388 from S. aureus reveals a capped hexameric toroid with two PII domain lids and a dinuclear metal center

    SciTech Connect

    Saikatendu, Kumar Singh; Zhang, Xuejun; Kinch, Lisa; Leybourne, Matthew; Grishin, Nick V.; Zhang, Hong

    2009-01-26

    The protein encoded by the SA1388 gene from Staphylococcus aureus was chosen for structure determination to elucidate its domain organization and confirm our earlier remote homology based prediction that it housed a nitrogen regulatory PII protein-like domain. SA1388 was predicted to contain a central PII-like domain and two flanking regions, which together belong to the NIF3-like protein family. Proteins like SA1388 remain a poorly studied group and their structural characterization could guide future investigations aimed at understanding their function. The structure of SA1388 has been solved to 2.0{angstrom} resolution by single wavelength anomalous dispersion phasing method using selenium anomalous signals. It reveals a canonical NIF3-like fold containing two domains with a PII-like domain inserted in the middle of the polypeptide. The N and C terminal halves of the NIF3-like domains are involved in dimerization, while the PII domain forms trimeric contacts with symmetry related monomers. Overall, the NIF3-like domains of SA1388 are organized as a hexameric toroid similar to its homologs, E. coli ybgI and the hypothetical protein SP1609 from Streptococcus pneumoniae. The openings on either side of the toroid are partially covered by trimeric 'lids' formed by the PII domains. The junction of the two NIF3 domains has two zinc ions bound at what appears to be a histidine rich active site. A well-defined electron density corresponding to an endogenously bound ligand of unknown identity is observed in close proximity to the metal site. SA1388 is the third member of the NIF3-like family of proteins to be structurally characterized, the other two also being hypothetical proteins of unknown function. The structure of SA1388 confirms our earlier prediction that the inserted domain that separates the two NIF3 domains adopts a PII-like fold and reveals an overall capped toroidal arrangement for the protein hexamer. The six PII-like domains form two trimeric 'lids' that

  3. Identification of LATE BLOOMER2 as a CYCLING DOF FACTOR Homolog Reveals Conserved and Divergent Features of the Flowering Response to Photoperiod in Pea.

    PubMed

    Ridge, Stephen; Sussmilch, Frances C; Hecht, Valérie; Vander Schoor, Jacqueline K; Lee, Robyn; Aubert, Gregoire; Burstin, Judith; Macknight, Richard C; Weller, James L

    2016-10-01

    The molecular pathways responsible for the flowering response to photoperiod have been extensively studied in Arabidopsis thaliana and cereals but remain poorly understood in other major plant groups. Here, we describe a dominant mutant at the LATE BLOOMER2 (LATE2) locus in pea (Pisum sativum) that is late-flowering with a reduced response to photoperiod. LATE2 acts downstream of light signaling and the circadian clock to control expression of the main photoperiod-regulated FT gene, FTb2, implying that it plays a primary role in photoperiod measurement. Mapping identified the CYCLING DOF FACTOR gene CDFc1 as a strong candidate for LATE2, and the late2-1D mutant was found to carry a missense mutation in CDFc1 that impairs its capacity to bind to the blue-light photoreceptor FKF1 in yeast two-hybrid assays and delays flowering in Arabidopsis when overexpressed. Arabidopsis CDF genes are important negative regulators of CONSTANS (CO) transcription, but we found no effect of LATE2 on the transcription of pea CO-LIKE genes, nor on genes in any other families previously implicated in the activation of FT in Arabidopsis. Our results reveal an important component of the pea photoperiod response pathway and support the view that regulation of FTb2 expression by photoperiod occurs via a CO-independent mechanism.

  4. Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Solution Structures of Lacticin Q and Aureocin A53 Reveal a Structural Motif Conserved among Leaderless Bacteriocins with Broad-Spectrum Activity.

    PubMed

    Acedo, Jeella Z; van Belkum, Marco J; Lohans, Christopher T; Towle, Kaitlyn M; Miskolzie, Mark; Vederas, John C

    2016-02-02

    Lacticin Q (LnqQ) and aureocin A53 (AucA) are leaderless bacteriocins from Lactococcus lactis QU5 and Staphylococcus aureus A53, respectively. These bacteriocins are characterized by the absence of an N-terminal leader sequence and are active against a broad range of Gram-positive bacteria. LnqQ and AucA consist of 53 and 51 amino acids, respectively, and have 47% identical sequences. In this study, their three-dimensional structures were elucidated using solution nuclear magnetic resonance and were shown to consist of four α-helices that assume a very similar compact, globular overall fold (root-mean-square deviation of 1.7 Å) with a highly cationic surface and a hydrophobic core. The structures of LnqQ and AucA resemble the shorter two-component leaderless bacteriocins, enterocins 7A and 7B, despite having low levels of sequence identity. Homology modeling revealed that the observed structural motif may be shared among leaderless bacteriocins with broad-spectrum activity against Gram-positive organisms. The elucidated structures of LnqQ and AucA also exhibit some resemblance to circular bacteriocins. Despite their similar overall fold, inhibition studies showed that LnqQ and AucA have different antimicrobial potency against the Gram-positive strains tested, suggesting that sequence disparities play a crucial role in their mechanisms of action.

  5. The structure of mouse cytomegalovirus m04 protein obtained from sparse NMR data reveals a conserved fold of the m02-m06 viral immune modulator family.

    PubMed

    Sgourakis, Nikolaos G; Natarajan, Kannan; Ying, Jinfa; Vogeli, Beat; Boyd, Lisa F; Margulies, David H; Bax, Ad

    2014-09-02

    Immunoevasins are key proteins used by viruses to subvert host immune responses. Determining their high-resolution structures is key to understanding virus-host interactions toward the design of vaccines and other antiviral therapies. Mouse cytomegalovirus encodes a unique set of immunoevasins, the m02-m06 family, that modulates major histocompatibility complex class I (MHC-I) antigen presentation to CD8+ T cells and natural killer cells. Notwithstanding the large number of genetic and functional studies, the structural biology of immunoevasins remains incompletely understood, largely because of crystallization bottlenecks. Here we implement a technology using sparse nuclear magnetic resonance data and integrative Rosetta modeling to determine the structure of the m04/gp34 immunoevasin extracellular domain. The structure reveals a β fold that is representative of the m02-m06 family of viral proteins, several of which are known to bind MHC-I molecules and interfere with antigen presentation, suggesting its role as a diversified immune regulation module.

  6. Comparative proteome analysis reveals conserved and specific adaptation patterns of Staphylococcus aureus after internalization by different types of human non-professional phagocytic host cells

    PubMed Central

    Surmann, Kristin; Michalik, Stephan; Hildebrandt, Petra; Gierok, Philipp; Depke, Maren; Brinkmann, Lars; Bernhardt, Jörg; Salazar, Manuela G.; Sun, Zhi; Shteynberg, David; Kusebauch, Ulrike; Moritz, Robert L.; Wollscheid, Bernd; Lalk, Michael; Völker, Uwe; Schmidt, Frank

    2014-01-01

    Staphylococcus aureus is a human pathogen that can cause a wide range of diseases. Although formerly regarded as extracellular pathogen, it has been shown that S. aureus can also be internalized by host cells and persist within these cells. In the present study, we comparatively analyzed survival and physiological adaptation of S. aureus HG001 after internalization by two human lung epithelial cell lines (S9 and A549), and human embryonic kidney cells (HEK 293). Combining enrichment of bacteria from host-pathogen assays by cell sorting and quantitation of the pathogen's proteome by mass spectrometry we characterized S. aureus adaptation during the initial phase between 2.5 h and 6.5 h post-infection. Starting with about 2 × 106 bacteria, roughly 1450 S. aureus proteins, including virulence factors and metabolic enzymes were identified by spectral comparison and classical database searches. Most of the bacterial adaptation reactions, such as decreased levels of ribosomal proteins and metabolic enzymes or increased amounts of proteins involved in arginine and lysine biosynthesis, enzymes coding for terminal oxidases and stress responsive proteins or activation of the sigma factor SigB were observed after internalization into any of the three cell lines studied. However, differences were noted in central carbon metabolism including regulation of fermentation and threonine degradation. Since these differences coincided with different intracellular growth behavior, complementary profiling of the metabolome of the different non-infected host cell types was performed. This revealed similar levels of intracellular glucose but host cell specific differences in the amounts of amino acids such as glycine, threonine or glutamate. With this comparative study we provide an impression of the common and specific features of the adaptation of S. aureus HG001 to specific host cell environments as a starting point for follow-up studies with different strain isolates and regulatory

  7. Comparative proteome analysis reveals conserved and specific adaptation patterns of Staphylococcus aureus after internalization by different types of human non-professional phagocytic host cells.

    PubMed

    Surmann, Kristin; Michalik, Stephan; Hildebrandt, Petra; Gierok, Philipp; Depke, Maren; Brinkmann, Lars; Bernhardt, Jörg; Salazar, Manuela G; Sun, Zhi; Shteynberg, David; Kusebauch, Ulrike; Moritz, Robert L; Wollscheid, Bernd; Lalk, Michael; Völker, Uwe; Schmidt, Frank

    2014-01-01

    Staphylococcus aureus is a human pathogen that can cause a wide range of diseases. Although formerly regarded as extracellular pathogen, it has been shown that S. aureus can also be internalized by host cells and persist within these cells. In the present study, we comparatively analyzed survival and physiological adaptation of S. aureus HG001 after internalization by two human lung epithelial cell lines (S9 and A549), and human embryonic kidney cells (HEK 293). Combining enrichment of bacteria from host-pathogen assays by cell sorting and quantitation of the pathogen's proteome by mass spectrometry we characterized S. aureus adaptation during the initial phase between 2.5 h and 6.5 h post-infection. Starting with about 2 × 10(6) bacteria, roughly 1450 S. aureus proteins, including virulence factors and metabolic enzymes were identified by spectral comparison and classical database searches. Most of the bacterial adaptation reactions, such as decreased levels of ribosomal proteins and metabolic enzymes or increased amounts of proteins involved in arginine and lysine biosynthesis, enzymes coding for terminal oxidases and stress responsive proteins or activation of the sigma factor SigB were observed after internalization into any of the three cell lines studied. However, differences were noted in central carbon metabolism including regulation of fermentation and threonine degradation. Since these differences coincided with different intracellular growth behavior, complementary profiling of the metabolome of the different non-infected host cell types was performed. This revealed similar levels of intracellular glucose but host cell specific differences in the amounts of amino acids such as glycine, threonine or glutamate. With this comparative study we provide an impression of the common and specific features of the adaptation of S. aureus HG001 to specific host cell environments as a starting point for follow-up studies with different strain isolates and regulatory

  8. Analyses of Sox-B and Sox-E Family Genes in the Cephalopod Sepia officinalis: Revealing the Conserved and the Unusual

    PubMed Central

    Focareta, Laura; Cole, Alison G.

    2016-01-01

    Cephalopods provide an unprecedented opportunity for comparative studies of the developmental genetics of organ systems that are convergent with analogous vertebrate structures. The Sox-family of transcription factors is an important class of DNA-binding proteins that are known to be involved in many aspects of differentiation, but have been largely unstudied in lophotrochozoan systems. Using a degenerate primer strategy we have isolated coding sequence for three members of the Sox family of transcription factors from a cephalopod mollusk, the European cuttlefish Sepia officinalis: Sof-SoxE, Sof-SoxB1, and Sof-SoxB2. Analyses of their expression patterns during organogenesis reveals distinct spatial and temporal expression domains. Sof-SoxB1 shows early ectodermal expression throughout the developing epithelium, which is gradually restricted to presumptive sensory epithelia. Expression within the nervous system appears by mid-embryogenesis. Sof-SoxB2 expression is similar to Sof-SoxB1 within the developing epithelia in early embryogenesis, however appears in largely non-overlapping expression domains within the central nervous system and is not expressed in the maturing sensory epithelium. In contrast, Sof-SoxE is expressed throughout the presumptive mesodermal territories at the onset of organogenesis. As development proceeds, Sof-SoxE expression is elevated throughout the developing peripheral circulatory system. This expression disappears as the circulatory system matures, but expression is maintained within undifferentiated connective tissues throughout the animal, and appears within the nervous system near the end of embryogenesis. SoxB proteins are widely known for their role in neural specification in numerous phylogenetic lineages. Our data suggests that Sof-SoxB genes play similar roles in cephalopods. In contrast, Sof-SoxE appears to be involved in the early stages of vasculogenesis of the cephalopod closed circulatory system, a novel role for a member of

  9. The presence of the ancestral insect telomeric motif in kissing bugs (Triatominae) rules out the hypothesis of its loss in evolutionarily advanced Heteroptera (Cimicomorpha)

    PubMed Central

    Pita, Sebastián; Panzera, Francisco; Mora, Pablo; Vela, Jesús; Palomeque, Teresa; Lorite, Pedro

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Next-generation sequencing data analysis on Triatoma infestans Klug, 1834 (Heteroptera, Cimicomorpha, Reduviidae) revealed the presence of the ancestral insect (TTAGG)n telomeric motif in its genome. Fluorescence in situ hybridization confirms that chromosomes bear this telomeric sequence in their chromosomal ends. Furthermore, motif amount estimation was about 0.03% of the total genome, so that the average telomere length in each chromosomal end is almost 18 kb long. We also detected the presence of (TTAGG)n telomeric repeat in mitotic and meiotic chromosomes in other three species of Triatominae: Triatoma dimidiata Latreille, 1811, Dipetalogaster maxima Uhler, 1894, and Rhodnius prolixus Ståhl, 1859. This is the first report of the (TTAGG)n telomeric repeat in the infraorder Cimicomorpha, contradicting the currently accepted hypothesis that evolutionarily recent heteropterans lack this ancestral insect telomeric sequence. PMID:27830050

  10. Range-wide phylogeography and conservation genetics of a narrowly endemic stream salamander, Pachyhynobius shangchengensis (Caudata, Hynobiidae): implications for conservation.

    PubMed

    Pan, T; Wang, H; Hu, C-C; Shi, W-B; Zhao, K; Huang, X; Zhang, B-W

    2014-02-13

    The Shangcheng stout salamander (Pachyhynobius shangchengensis) is an endangered amphibian endemic to the Dabie Mountains, southeast China, and is currently threatened by habitat loss and illegal poaching. Here we used the mitochondrial DNA control region sequence (768 bp) to conduct a comprehensive investigation of genetic diversity, phylogeographic pattern, and demographic history of the species across its geographic distribution to assist its conservation. We concluded that the levels of genetic variation are relatively low in all four populations. Analysis of molecular variance indicated that the most likely phylogeographic pattern is [JGT] [KHJ] [TM, BYM]. Two distinct clades were identified in the phylogenetic tree of 28 haplotypes, corresponding to the two southern populations (TM, BYM) and two northern populations (JGT, KHJ). Significant population differentiation (FST) was detected among all populations. Among the four populations, historical demographic analyses (e.g., the g parameter, the Tajima D test, and the Fu Fs test) did not reveal definite information on population expansion except for the BYM population, which had undergone a strong population expansion event. Based on the analysis of a Bayesian skyline plot, the total population underwent a significant population fluctuation around 20 kya. This may have been triggered by the end of the last glacial maximum. In conclusion, the existence of three evolutionarily significant units (BMY-TM, KHJ, and JGT) and four management units (BMY, TM, KHJ, and JGT) is supported by our study.

  11. Functional Conservation and Divergence of Four Ginger AP1/AGL9 MADS–Box Genes Revealed by Analysis of Their Expression and Protein–Protein Interaction, and Ectopic Expression of AhFUL Gene in Arabidopsis

    PubMed Central

    Song, Juanjuan; Sun, Wei; Xia, Kuaifei; Liao, Jingping; Zhang, Mingyong

    2014-01-01

    Alpinia genus are known generally as ginger–lilies for showy flowers in the ginger family, Zingiberaceae, and their floral morphology diverges from typical monocotyledon flowers. However, little is known about the functions of ginger MADS–box genes in floral identity. In this study, four AP1/AGL9 MADS–box genes were cloned from Alpinia hainanensis, and protein–protein interactions (PPIs) and roles of the four genes in floral homeotic conversion and in floral evolution are surveyed for the first time. AhFUL is clustered to the AP1lineage, AhSEP4 and AhSEP3b to the SEP lineage, and AhAGL6–like to the AGL6 lineage. The four genes showed conserved and divergent expression patterns, and their encoded proteins were localized in the nucleus. Seven combinations of PPI (AhFUL–AhSEP4, AhFUL–AhAGL6–like, AhFUL–AhSEP3b, AhSEP4–AhAGL6–like, AhSEP4–AhSEP3b, AhAGL6–like–AhSEP3b, and AhSEP3b–AhSEP3b) were detected, and the PPI patterns in the AP1/AGL9 lineage revealed that five of the 10 possible combinations are conserved and three are variable, while conclusions cannot yet be made regarding the other two. Ectopic expression of AhFUL in Arabidopsis thaliana led to early flowering and floral organ homeotic conversion to sepal–like or leaf–like. Therefore, we conclude that the four A. hainanensis AP1/AGL9 genes show functional conservation and divergence in the floral identity from other MADS–box genes. PMID:25461565

  12. Divergent Expression Regulation of Gonad Development Genes in Medaka Shows Incomplete Conservation of the Downstream Regulatory Network of Vertebrate Sex Determination

    PubMed Central

    Herpin, Amaury; Adolfi, Mateus C.; Nicol, Barbara; Hinzmann, Maria; Schmidt, Cornelia; Klughammer, Johanna; Engel, Mareen; Tanaka, Minoru; Guiguen, Yann; Schartl, Manfred

    2013-01-01

    Genetic control of male or female gonad development displays between different groups of organisms a remarkable diversity of “master sex-determining genes” at the top of the genetic hierarchies, whereas downstream components surprisingly appear to be evolutionarily more conserved. Without much further studies, conservation of sequence has been equalized to conservation of function. We have used the medaka fish to investigate the generality of this paradigm. In medaka, the master male sex-determining gene is dmrt1bY, a highly conserved downstream regulator of sex determination in vertebrates. To understand its function in orchestrating the complex gene regulatory network, we have identified targets genes and regulated pathways of Dmrt1bY. Monitoring gene expression and interactions by transgenic fluorescent reporter fish lines, in vivo tissue-chromatin immunoprecipitation and in vitro gene regulation assays revealed concordance but also major discrepancies between ma