New Genes (new + gene)

Distribution by Scientific Domains
Distribution within Life Sciences

Selected Abstracts

A Microarray Based Genomic Hybridization Method for Identification of New Genes in Plants: Case Analyses of Arabidopsis and Oryza

Chuanzhu Fan
Abstract To systematically estimate the gene duplication events in closely related species, we have to use comparative genomic approaches, either through genomic sequence comparison or comparative genomic hybridization (CGH). Given the scarcity of complete genomic sequences of plant species, in the present study we adopted an array based CGH to investigate gene duplications in the genus Arabidopsis. Fragment genomic DNA from four species, namely Arabidopsis thaliana, A. lyrata subsp. lyrata, A. lyrata subsp. petraea, and A. halleri, was hybridized to Affymetrix (Santa Clara, CA, USA) tiling arrays that are designed from the genomic sequences of A. thaliana. Pairwise comparisons of signal intensity were made to infer the potential duplicated candidates along each phylo-genetic branch. Ninety-four potential candidates of gene duplication along the genus were identified. Among them, the majority (69 of 94) were A. thaliana lineage specific. This result indicates that the array based CGH approach may be used to identify candidates of duplication in other plant genera containing closely related species, such as Oryza, particularly for the AA genome species. We compared the degree of gene duplication through retrotransposon between O. sativa and A. thaliana and found a strikingly higher number of chimera retroposed genes in rice. The higher rate of gene duplication through retroposition and other mechanisms may indicate that the grass species is able to adapt to more diverse environments. [source]

Hereditary hypophosphatemias: New genes in the bone,kidney axis (Review Article)

NEPHROLOGY, Issue 4 2007
SUMMARY: Hypophosphatemia due to isolated renal phosphate wasting is a genetically heterogeneous disease. Two new genes linked to two different forms of hereditary hypophosphatemias have recently been described. Autosomal recessive form of hypophosphatemic rickets was mapped to chromosome 4q21 and identified homozygous mutations in dentin matrix protein 1 (DMP1) gene, which encodes a non-collagenous bone matrix protein. Intact plasma levels of the phosphaturic protein FGF23 (fibroblast growth factor 23) were clearly elevated in some of the affected individuals, providing a possible explanation for the phosphaturia and inappropriately normal 1,25(OH)2D levels, and suggesting that DMP1 may regulate FGF23 expression. Hereditary hypophosphatemic rickets with hypercalciuria is another rare disorder of autosomal recessive inheritance. Affected individuals present with hypercalciuria due to increased serum 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D levels and increased intestinal calcium absorption. The disease was mapped to a 1.6 Mbp region on chromosome 9q34, which contains SLC34A3, the gene encoding the renal sodium-phosphate cotransporter NaPi-IIc. This was the first demonstration that NaPi-IIc has a key role in the regulation of phosphate homeostasis. Thus, DMP1 and NaPi-IIc add two new members to the bone,kidney axis proposed since it was discovered that the first phosphatonin, FGF23, was of osteoblastic/osteocyte origin. This provides a mechanism for the skeleton to communicate with the kidney to coordinate the mineralization of extracelular matrix and the renal handling of phosphate. [source]

Novel member of the mouse desmoglein gene family: Dsg1-,

L. Pulkkinen
Abstract: Desmosomes are major intercellular adhesion junctions that provide stable cell,cell contacts and mechanical strength to epithelial tissues by anchoring cytokeratin intermediate filaments of adjacent cells. Desmogleins (Dsg) are transmembrane core components of the desmosomes, and belong to the cadherin supergene family of calcium-dependent adhesion molecules. Currently, there are three known isoforms of Dsgs (Dsg1, Dsg2, and Dsg3), encoded by distinct genes that are differentially expressed to determine their tissue specificity and differentiation state of epithelial cells. In this study, we cloned a novel mouse desmoglein gene sharing high homology to both mouse and human Dsg1. We propose to designate the previously published mouse Dsg1 gene as Dsg1- , and the new gene as Dsg1-,. Analysis of intron/exon organization of the Dsg1-, and Dsg1-, genes revealed significant conservation. The full-length mouse Dsg1-, cDNA contains an open reading frame of 3180 bp encoding a precursor protein of 1060 amino acids. Dsg1-, protein shares 94% and 76% identity with mouse Dsg1-, and human DSG1, respectively. RT-PCR using a multitissue cDNA panel demonstrated that while Dsg1-, mRNA was expressed in 15- to 17-day-old embryos and adult spleen and testis, Dsg1-, mRNA was detected in 17-day-old embryos only. To assess subcellular localization, a FLAG-tagged expression construct of Dsg1-, was transiently expressed in epithelial HaCaT cells. Dsg1-,-FLAG was found at the cell,cell border and was recognized by the anti-Dsg1/Dsg2 antibody DG3.10. In summary, we have cloned and characterized a novel member of the mouse desmoglein gene family, Dsg1-,. [source]

Identification and characterization of a new gene from Variovorax paradoxus Iso1 encoding N -acyl- d -amino acid amidohydrolase responsible for d -amino acid production

FEBS JOURNAL, Issue 19 2002
Pei-Hsun Lin
An N -acyl- d -amino acid amidohydrolase (N -D-AAase) was identified in cell extracts of a strain, Iso1, isolated from an environment containing N -acetyl- d -methionine. The bacterium was classified as Variovorax paradoxus by phylogenetic analysis. The gene was cloned and sequenced. The gene consisted of a 1467-bp ORF encoding a polypeptide of 488 amino acids. The V. paradoxusN -D-AAase showed significant amino acid similarity to the N -acyl- d -amino acid amidohydrolases of the two eubacteria Alcaligenes xylosoxydans A-6 (44,56% identity), Alcaligenes facelis DA1 (54% identity) and the hyperthermophilic archaeon Pyrococcus abyssi (42% identity). After over-expression of the N -D-AAase protein in Escherichia coli, the enzyme was purified by multistep chromatography. The native molecular mass was 52.8 kDa, which agreed with the predicted molecular mass of 52 798 Da and the enzyme appeared to be a monomer protein by gel-filtration chromatography. A homogenous protein with a specific activity of 516 Umg,1 was finally obtained. After peptide sequencing by LC/MS/MS, the results were in agreement with the deduced amino acid sequence of the N -D-AAase. The pI of the enzyme was 5.12 and it had an optimal pH and temperature of 7.5 and 50 C, respectively. After 30 min heat treatment at 45 C, between pH 6 and pH 8, 80% activity remained. The N -D-AAase had higher hydrolysing activity against N -acetyl- d -amino acid derivates containing d -methionine, d -leucine and d -alanine and against N -chloroacetyl- d -phenylalanine. Importantly, the enzyme does not act on the N -acetyl- l -amino acid derivatives. The enzyme was inhibited by chelating agents and certain metal ions, but was activated by 1 mm of Co2+ and Mg2+. Thus, the N -D-AAase from V. paradoxus can be considered a chiral specific and metal-dependent enzyme. [source]

Cloning, chromosomal localization and characterization of the murine mucin gene orthologous to human MUC4

FEBS JOURNAL, Issue 13 2002
Jean-Luc Desseyn
We report here the full coding sequence of a novel mouse putative membrane-associated mucin containing three extracellular EGF-like motifs and a mucin-like domain consisting of at least 20 tandem repeats of 124,126 amino acids. Screening a cosmid and a BAC libraries allowed to isolate several genomic clones. Genomic and cDNA sequence comparisons showed that the gene consists of 25 exons and 24 introns covering a genomic region of ,,52 kb. The first intron is ,,16 kb in length and is followed by an unusually large exon (, 9.5 kb) encoding Ser/Thr-rich tandemly repeated sequences. Radiation hybrid mapping localized this new gene to a mouse region of chromosome 16, which is the orthologous region of human chromosome 3q29 encompassing the large membrane-anchored mucin MUC4. Contigs analysis of the Human Genome Project did not reveal any other mucin on chromosome 3q29 and, interestingly, our analysis allowed the determination of the genomic organization of the human MUC4 and showed that its exon/intron structure is identical to that of the mouse gene we cloned. Furthermore, the human MUC4 shares considerable homologies with the mouse gene. Based on these data, we concluded that we isolated the mouse ortholog of MUC4 we propose as Muc4. Expression studies showed that Muc4 is ubiquitous like SMC and MUC4, with highest levels of expression in trachea and intestinal tract. [source]

Genes involved in the determination of the rate of inversions at short inverted repeats

GENES TO CELLS, Issue 6 2000
Malgorzata M. Slupska
Background Not all of the enzymatic pathways involved in genetic rearrangements have been elucidated. While some rearrangements occur by recombination at areas of high homology, others are mediated by short, often interrupted homologies. We have previously constructed an Escherichia coli strain that allows us to examine inversions at microhomologies, and have shown that inversions can occur at short inverted repeats in a recB,C -dependent fashion. Results Here, we report on the use of this strain to define genetic loci involved in limiting rearrangements on an F, plasmid carrying the lac genes. Employing mini-Tn10 derivatives to generate insertions near or into genes of interest, we detected three loci (rmuA,B,C) that, when mutated, increase inversions. We have mapped, cloned and sequenced these mutator loci. In one case, inactivation of the sbcC gene leads to an increase in rearrangements, and in another, insertions near the recE gene lead to an even larger increase. The third gene involved in limiting inversions, rmuC, has been mapped at 86 min on the E. coli chromosome and encodes a protein of unknown function with a limited homology to myosins, and some of the SMC (structural maintenance of chromosomes) proteins. Conclusions This work presents the first example of an anti-mutator role of the sbcC,D genes, and defines a new gene (rmuC) involved in DNA recombination. [source]

Improved genetic algorithm for design optimization of truss structures with sizing, shape and topology variables

Wenyan Tang
Abstract This paper presents an improved genetic algorithm (GA) to minimize weight of truss with sizing, shape and topology variables. Because of the nature of discrete and continuous variables, mixed coding schemes are proposed, including binary and float coding, integer and float coding. Surrogate function is applied to unify the constraints into single one; moreover surrogate reproduction is developed to select good individuals to mating pool on the basis of constraint and fitness values, which completely considers the character of constrained optimization. This paper proposes a new strategy of creating next population by competing between parent and offspring population based on constraint and fitness values; so that lifetime of excellent gene is prolonged. Because the initial population is created randomly and three operators of GA are also indeterminable, it is necessary to check whether the structural topology is desirable. An improved restart operator is proposed to introduce new gene and explore new space, so that the reliability of GA is enhanced. Selected examples are solved; the improved numerical results demonstrate that the enhanced GA scheme is feasible and effective. Copyright 2005 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

The ,-1,3-glucanosyltransferase gas4p is essential for ascospore wall maturation and spore viability in Schizosaccharomyces pombe

Mara De Medina-Redondo
Summary Meiosis is the developmental programme by which sexually reproducing diploid organisms generate haploid gametes. In yeast, meiosis is followed by spore morphogenesis. The formation of the Schizosaccharomyces pombe ascospore wall requires the co-ordinated activity of enzymes involved in the biosynthesis and modification of its components, such as glucans. During sporogenesis, the ,-1,3-glucan synthase bgs2p synthesizes linear ,-1,3-glucans, which remain unorganized and alkali-soluble until covalent linkages are set up between ,-1,3-glucans and other cell wall components. Several proteins belonging to the glycoside hydrolase family 72 (GH72) with ,-1,3-glucanosyltransferase activity have been described in other organisms, such as the Saccharomyces cerevisiae Gas1p or the Aspergillus fumigatus Gel1p. Here we describe the characterization of gas4+, a new gene that encodes a protein of the GH72 family. Deletion of this gene does not lead to any apparent defect during vegetative growth, but homozygous gas4, diploids show a sporulation defect. Although meiosis occurs normally, ascospores are unable to mature or to germinate. The expression of gas4+ is strongly induced during sporulation and a yellow fluorescent protein (YFP),gas4p fusion protein localizes to the ascospore periphery during sporulation. We conclude that gas4p is required for ascospore maturation in S. pombe. [source]

A tale of two dead ends: origin of a potential new gene and a potential new transposable element

A. John Clutterbuck
Summary An article in this issue of Molecular Microbiology by Cultrone et al. describes how a non-autonomous helitron element could arise from its autonomous parent transposon by deletion followed by readthrough into an adjacent gene and its promoter, thus providing a mechanism for distribution of a specifically regulated promoter sequence around the genome, where it would have the potential to evolve new functions. [source]

A uniquely high number of ftsZ genes in the moss Physcomitrella patens

PLANT BIOLOGY, Issue 5 2009
A. Martin
Abstract Plant FtsZ proteins are encoded by two small nuclear gene families (FtsZ1 and FtsZ2) and are involved in chloroplast division. From the moss Physcomitrella patens, four FtsZ proteins, two in each nuclear gene family, have been characterised and described so far. In the recently sequenced P. patens genome, we have now found a fifth ftsZ gene. This novel gene has a genomic structure similar to PpftsZ1-1. According to phylogenetic analysis, the encoded protein is a member of the FtsZ1 family, while PpFtsZ1-2, together with an orthologue from Selaginella moellendorffii, forms a separate clade. Further, this new gene is expressed in different gametophytic tissues and the encoded protein forms filamentous networks in chloroplasts, is found in stromules, and acts in plastid division. Based on all these results, we have renamed the PpFtsZ proteins of family 1 and suggest the existence of a third FtsZ family. No species is known to encode more FtsZ proteins per haploid genome than P. patens. [source]

Cytogenetical studies in wheat.

PLANT BREEDING, Issue 1 2000
Abstract A new gene, Yr24, for resistance to stripe rust was transferred from a durum accession to common wheat via an amphiploid (synthetic wheat) with Aegilops tauschii. Yr24 was located in chromosome 1B by monosomic analysis. Its genetic linkage of 4 cM with Yr15 indicated its localization to the short arm. [source]

Gene Therapy for Head and Neck Cancer ,

Lyon L. Gleich MD
Abstract Objectives/Hypothesis New treatment methods are needed for head and neck cancer to improve survival without increasing morbidity. Gene therapy is a potential method of improving patient outcome. Progress in gene therapy for cancer is reviewed with emphasis on the limitations of vector technology and treatment strategies. Given the current technological vector limitations in transmitting the therapeutic genes, treatments that require the fewest number of cells to be altered by the new gene are optimal. Therefore an immune-based gene therapy strategy was selected in which the tumors were transfected with the gene for an alloantigen, human leukocyte antigen (HLA),B7, a class I major histocompatibility complex (MHC). This would restore an antigen presentation mechanism in the tumor to induce an antitumor response. This gene therapy strategy was tested in patients with advanced, unresectable head and neck cancer. Study Design Prospective trial. Methods Twenty patients with advanced head and neck cancer who had failed conventional therapy and did not e-press HLA-B7 were treated with gene therapy using a lipid vector by direct intratumoral injection. The gene therapy product contained the HLA-B7 gene and the ,2-microglobulin gene, which permits complete e-pression of the class I MHC at the cell surface. Patients were assessed for any adverse effects, for changes in tumor size, for time to disease progression, and for survival. Biopsy specimens were assessed for pathological response, HLA-B7 e-pression, apoptosis, cellular proliferation, CD-8 cells, granzyme, and p53 status. Results There were no adverse effects from the gene therapy. At 16 weeks after beginning gene therapy, four patients had a partial response and two patients had stable disease. Two of the tumors completely responded clinically, but tumor was still seen on pathological examination. The time to disease progression in the responding patients was 20 to 80 weeks. The median survival in patients who completed gene therapy was 54 weeks, compared with 21 weeks in patients whose tumors progressed after the first cycle of treatment. One patient survived for 106 weeks without any additional therapy. HLA-B7 was demonstrated in the treated tumors, and increased apoptosis was seen in the responding tumors. Conclusion Significant advances have been made in the field of gene therapy for cancer. Alloantigen gene therapy has had efficacy in the treatment of cancer and can induce tumor responses in head and neck tumors. Alloantigen gene therapy has significant potential as an adjunctive treatment of head and neck cancer. [source]

ORTH/VIM proteins that regulate DNA methylation are functional ubiquitin E3 ligases

Edward Kraft
Summary Appropriate methylation of genomes is essential for gene regulation. Here, we describe the six-member ORTHRUS (ORTH) gene family of Arabidopsis thaliana that plays a role in DNA methylation in vivo. ORTH1, ORTH5 are predicted to encode proteins that contain one plant homeodomain (PHD), two really interesting new gene (RING) domains, and one set ring associated (SRA) domain, whereas ORTHlike-1 encodes a protein with only one RING and SRA domain. cDNAs for ORTH1, ORTH2, ORTH5 and ORTHlike-1 were isolated, and when expressed as glutathione- S -transferase (GST) fusion proteins, were capable of promoting ubiquitylation in vitro with the E2 AtUBC11. ORTH1 promotes ubiquitylation when paired with additional AtUBC8 family members. ORTH1 proteins with substitutions in metal,ligand binding residues in each ORTH1 RING domain individually, and ORTH1 truncation derivatives lacking one or both RING domains, were tested for their ability to catalyze ubiquitylation in vitro. In these assays, either ORTH1 RING domain is capable of promoting ubiquitylation. The PHD alone is not active as an E3 ligase, nor is it required for ligase activity. GFP-ORTH1 and GFP-ORTH2 are nuclear-localized in transgenic Arabidopsis plants. Overexpression of ORTH1 or ORTH2 in Arabidopsis leads to an altered flowering time. Inspection of DNA methylation at FWA and Cen180 repeats revealed hypomethylation when ORTH proteins were overexpressed. Once initiated, a late-flowering phenotype persisted in the absence of the ORTH transgene, consistent with epigenetic effects at FWA. We conclude that ORTH proteins are E3 ligases mediating DNA methylation status in vivo. [source]

The putative-farnesoic acid O -methyl transferase (FAMeT) gene of Ceratitis capitata: characterization and pre-imaginal life expression

Laura Vannini
Abstract Farnesoic acid O -methyl transferase (FAMeT) is the enzyme involved in the penultimate step of insect juvenile hormone (JH) biosynthesis and is thus a key regulator in insect development and reproduction. We report the characterization of the putative- FAMeT in the medfly or Mediterranean fruit fly, Ceratitis capitata. This gene was identified by suppressive subtractive hybridization and completely sequenced by the screening of a medfly cDNA library. The obtained sequence was analyzed for conserved protein domain identification and its expression profile was evaluated by quantitative Real-Time PCR in medfly pre-imaginal life. The tissue expression of the isolated gene was verified by in situ hybridization on third instar larvae sections. The characterization of the isolated gene pointed out several typical features of methyl transferase genes. The pre-imaginal putative- FAMeT expression levels were consistent with JH titer change in Diptera. As recognized in some crustaceans, this gene seems to be widely expressed in the medfly as well. Ceratitis capitata is one of the most relevant agricultural pests against which insecticides and the sterile insect technique (SIT) are extensively used in spite of the well-known limitations of these approaches. Although results are not conclusive for the physiological role of the isolated gene, they suggest the characterization of a new gene in the Mediterranean fruit fly potentially involved in JH biosynthesis and may, therefore, have implications for pest control. 2010 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. [source]

Trace amine-associated receptors and their ligands

R Zucchi
Classical biogenic amines (adrenaline, noradrenaline, dopamine, serotonin and histamine) interact with specific families of G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs). The term ,trace amines' is used when referring to p- tyramine, ,-phenylethylamine, tryptamine and octopamine, compounds that are present in mammalian tissues at very low (nanomolar) concentrations. The pharmacological effects of trace amines are usually attributed to their interference with the aminergic pathways, but in 2001 a new gene was identified, that codes for a GPCR responding to p- tyramine and ,-phenylethylamine but not to classical biogenic amines. Several closely related genes were subsequently identified and designated as the trace amine-associated receptors (TAARs). Pharmacological investigations in vitro show that many TAAR subtypes may not respond to p- tyramine, ,-phenylethylamine, tryptamine or octopamine, suggesting the existence of additional endogenous ligands. A novel endogenous thyroid hormone derivative, 3-iodothyronamine, has been found to interact with TAAR1 and possibly other TAAR subtypes. In vivo, micromolar concentrations of 3-iodothyronamine determine functional effects which are opposite to those produced on a longer time scale by thyroid hormones, including reduction in body temperature and decrease in cardiac contractility. Expression of all TAAR subtypes except TAAR1 has been reported in mouse olfactory epithelium, and several volatile amines were shown to interact with specific TAAR subtypes. In addition, there is evidence that TAAR1 is targeted by amphetamines and other psychotropic agents, while genetic linkage studies show a significant association between the TAAR gene family locus and susceptibility to schizophrenia or bipolar affective disorder. British Journal of Pharmacology (2006) 149, 967,978. doi:10.1038/sj.bjp.0706948 [source]

A Novel Gene "Niban" Upregulated in Renal Carcinogenesis: Cloning by the cDNA-amplified Fragment Length Polymorphism Approach

CANCER SCIENCE, Issue 9 2000
Shuichi Majima
A modified AFLP (amplified fragment length polymorphism) method was employed to isolate genes differentially expressed in renal carcinogenesis of Tsc2 gene mutant (Eker) rats. One gene, selected for further investigation, was named "Niban" ("second" in Japanese), because it is the second new gene to be found after Erc (expressed in renal carcinoma) in our laboratory. Importantly, "Niban" is well expressed even in small primary rat Eker renal tumors, more than in progressed cell lines, and is also expressed in human renal carcinoma cells, but not in normal human or rat kidneys. Chromosome assignment was to RNO 13 in the rat, and HSA 1. This "Niban" gene is a candidate as a marker for renal tumor, especially early-stage renal carcinogenesis. [source]

Stem cell antigen 2: a new gene involved in the self-renewal of erythroid progenitors

C. Bresson-Mazet
We have previously shown that SCA2 is overexpressed in self-renewing avian erythroid progenitors (T2ECs) as opposed to differentiating T2ECs. The aim of this study was to define the role of SCA2 in the switch between self-renewal and differentiation of erythroid progenitors. Materials and methods: We have investigated the cellular processes controlled by SCA2 in T2ECs by RNA interference and overexpression approaches. Moreover, we have used a SAGE Querying and analysis tools developed in our laboratory, to investigate the expression level of SCA2 gene in different human cell types. Results: We demonstrate the regulation of SCA2 expression by TGF-,, a growth factor essential for self-renewal of T2ECs. We establish that SCA2 knockdown by RNA interference reduced the proliferation and promoted the differentiation of T2ECs. In contrast, SCA2 overexpression inhibited differentiation of T2ECs only. Furthermore, by using a bioinformatic approach, we found that SCA2 is highly expressed in a variety of human cancer cells. We confirmed this result by quantitative PCR on human colon and kidney tissues. Conclusions: Altogether, these findings imply that SCA2 may function in a dose-dependent manner to support the self-renewal state and that its deregulation might contribute to the development of some human cancers. [source]

STIL on my small brain: a new gene for microcephaly

RA Kumar
No abstract is available for this article. [source]

Ontogeny of sexual dimorphism via tissue duplication in an ostracod (Crustacea)

Ajna S. Rivera
SUMMARY The adaptive significance of specific sexual dimorphism is well studied. However, the evolutionary history and ontogenic origins of the dimorphism are often unknown. As dimorphism represents two phenotypes generated from relatively similar genotypes, it is of interest to understand both its evolutionary and developmental/genetic underpinnings. Here, we present the first ontogenetic examination of the eyes of philomedid ostracods (Crustacea), which exhibit extremely sexually dimorphic lateral eyes. Adult male philomedids have large compound lateral eyes, whereas females have rudimentary lateral eyes. First, we show that eye dimorphism is unlikely to be due to additional genes present on a male-specific chromosome because karyotype analysis suggests philomedids are XX/XO. We then examine the ontogeny of eye development and find that in at least two species of Euphilomedes, this dimorphism is not generated solely by differences in tissue growth rates, as has been commonly shown for sexually dimorphic characters of other species. Instead, the dimorphism appears to arise during development via tissue duplication, where a single tissue becomes two, perhaps with different developmental potentials. The second eye field is only observed in male Euphilomedes, producing most of the adult eye tissue. We point out that tissue duplication is a developmental process with evolutionary implications because novel characters could evolve via alternative modification of the duplicated fields, analogous to the origin of new genes by gene duplication and alternative modification. Depending on the evolutionary history of the duplicated field, it may have either facilitated or directly caused the observed sexual dimorphism of philomedid ostracods. [source]

Social behavior and comparative genomics: new genes or new gene regulation?

G. E. Robinson
Molecular analyses of social behavior are distinguished by the use of an unusually broad array of animal models. This is advantageous for a number of reasons, including the opportunity for comparative genomic analyses that address fundamental issues in the molecular biology of social behavior. One issue relates to the kinds of changes in genome structure and function that occur to give rise to social behavior. This paper considers one aspect of this issue, whether social evolution involves new genes, new gene regulation, or both. This is accomplished by briefly reviewing findings from studies of the fish Haplochromis burtoni, the vole Microtus ochrogaster, and the honey bee Apis mellifera, with a more detailed and prospective consideration of the honey bee. [source]

Update of the molecular basis of familial hypercholesterolemia in The Netherlands,

HUMAN MUTATION, Issue 6 2005
Sigrid W. Fouchier
Abstract Autosomal-dominant hypercholesterolemia (ADH) has been identified as a major risk factor for coronary vascular disease (CVD) and is associated with mutations in the low-density lipoprotein receptor (LDLR) and the apolipoprotein B (APOB) gene. Since 1991 DNA samples from clinically diagnosed ADH patients have been routinely analyzed for the presence of LDLR and APOB gene mutations. As of 2001, 1,641 index patients (164 index patients per year) had been identified, while from 2001 onward a more sensitive, high-throughput system was used, resulting in the identification of 1,177 new index patients (average=294 index patients per year). Of these 1,177 index cases, 131 different causative genetic variants in the LDLR gene and six different causative mutations in the APOB gene were new for the Dutch population. Of these 131 mutations, 83 LDLR and four APOB gene mutations had not been reported before. The inclusion of all 2,818 index cases into the national screening program for familial hypercholesterolemia (FH) resulted in the identification of 7,079 relatives who carried a mutation that causes ADH. Screening of the LDLR and APOB genes in clinically diagnosed FH patients resulted in approximately 77% of the patients being identified as carriers of a causative mutation. The population of patients with ADH was divided into three genetically distinct groups: carriers of an LDLR mutation (FH), carriers of an APOB mutation (FDB), and non- LDLR/non- APOB patients (FH3). No differences were found with regard to untreated cholesterol levels, response to therapy, and onset of CVD. However, all groups were at an increased risk for CVD. Therefore, to ultimately identify all individuals with ADH, the identification of new genes and mutations in the genes that cause ADH is of crucial importance for the ongoing national program to identify patients with ADH by genetic cascade screening. Hum Mutat 26(6), 550,556, 2005. 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]

Host-plant preference and oviposition responses of the sorghum midge, Stenodiplosis sorghicola (Coquillett) (Dipt., Cecidomyiidae) towards wild relatives of sorghum

Sorghum midge, Stenodiplosis (Contarinia) sorghicola (Coquillett) is an important pest of grain sorghum world-wide. Considerable progress has been made in screening and breeding for resistance to sorghum midge. However, some of the sources of resistance have become susceptible to sorghum midge in Kenya, in eastern Africa. Therefore, the wild relatives of Sorghum bicolor were studied as a possible source of new genes conferring resistance to sorghum midge. Midge females did not lay eggs in the spikelets of Sorghum amplum, Sorghum bulbosum, and Sorghum angustum compared to 30% spikelets with eggs in Sorghum halepense when infested with five midge females per panicle under no-choice conditions. However, one egg was laid in S. amplum when infested with 50 midges per panicle. A larger number of midges were attracted to the odours from the panicles of S. halepense than to the panicles of Sorghum stipoideum, Sorghum brachypodum, S.angustum, Sorghum macrospermum, Sorghum nitidium, Sorghum laxiflorum, and S. amplum in dual-choice olfactometer tests. The differences in midge response to the odours from S. halepense and Sorghum intrans were not significant. Under multi-choice conditions, when the females were also allowed a contact with the host, more sorghum midge females were attracted to the panicles of S. bicolor compared with S. amplum, S. angustum, and S. halepense. In another test, numerically more midges responded to the panicles of IS 10712 compared with S. halepense, whereas the differences in midge response to the panicles of ICSV 197 (S. bicolor) and S. halepense were not apparent, indicating that S. halepense is as attractive to sorghum midge females as S. bicolor. The wild relatives of sorghum (except S. halepense) were not preferred for oviposition, and they were also less attractive to the sorghum midge females. Thus, wild relatives of sorghum can prove to be an alternative source of genes for resistance to sorghum midge. [source]

Mineral phosphate solubilization by rhizosphere bacteria and scope for manipulation of the direct oxidation pathway involving glucose dehydrogenase

B. Sashidhar
Summary Microbial biodiversity in the soil plays a significant role in metabolism of complex molecules, helps in plant nutrition and offers countless new genes, biochemical pathways, antibiotics and other metabolites, useful molecules for agronomic productivity. Phosphorus being the second most important macro-nutrient required by the plants, next to nitrogen, its availability in soluble form in the soils is of great importance in agriculture. Microbes present in the soil employ different strategies to make use of unavailable forms of phosphate and in turn also help plants making phosphate available for plant use. Azotobacter, a free-living nitrogen fixer, is known to increase the fertility of the soil and in turn the productivity of different crops. The glucose dehydrogenase gene, the first enzyme in the direct oxidation pathway, contributes significantly to mineral phosphate solubilization ability in several Gram-negative bacteria. It is possible to enhance further the biofertilizer potential of plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria by introducing the genes involved mineral phosphate solubilization without affecting their ability to fix nitrogen or produce phytohormones for dual benefit to agricultural crops. Glucose dehydrogenases from Gram-negative bacteria can be engineered to improve their ability to use different substrates, function at higher temperatures and EDTA tolerance, etc., through site-directed mutagenesis. [source]

Molecular recognition: Identifying compounds and their targets

Prabhavathi B. Fernandes Ph.D.
Abstract As a result of gene sequencing and proteomic efforts, thousands of new genes and proteins are now available as potential drug targets. The milieu of these proteins is complex and interactive; thousands of proteins activate, inhibit, and control each other's actions. The effect of blocking or activating a protein in a cell is far-reaching, and can affect whole, as well as adjacent pathways. This network of pathways is dynamic and a cellular response can change depending on the stimulus. In this section, the identification and role of individual proteins within the context of networked pathways, and the regulation of the activity of these proteins is discussed. Diverse chemical libraries, combinatorial libraries, natural products, as well as unnatural natural products that are derived from combinatorial biology (Chiu [2001] Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA. 98:8548,8553), provide the chemical diversity in the search for new drugs to block new targets. Identifying new compounds that can become drugs is a long, expensive, and arduous task and potential targets must be carefully defined so as not to waste valuable resources. Equally important is the selection of compounds to be future drug candidates. Target selectivity in no way guarantees clinical efficacy, as the compound must meet pharmaceutical requirements, such as solubility, absorption, tissue distribution, and lack of toxicity. Thus matching biological diversity with chemical diversity involves something more than tight interactions, it involves interactions of the compounds with a variety host factors that can modulate its activity. J. Cell. Biochem. Suppl. 37: 1,6, 2001. 2002 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]

Regulation of Eukaryotic Initiation Factor 4E and Its Isoform: Implications for Antiviral Strategy in Plants

Yu-Yang Zhang
Abstract In recent years, biotechnology has permitted regulation of the expression of endogenous plant genes to improve agronomically important traits. Genetic modification of crops has benefited from emerging knowledge of new genes, especially genes that exhibit novel functions, one of which is eukaryotic initiation factor 4E (eIF4E). eIF4E is one of the most important translation initiation factors involved in eukaryotic initiation. Recent research has demonstrated that virus resistance mediated by eIF4E and its isoform eIF (iso)4E occurs in several plant-virus interactions, thus indicating a potential new role for eIF4E/eIF(iso)4E in resistance strategies against plant viruses. In this review, we briefly describe eIF4E activity in plant translation, its potential role, and functions of the eIF4E subfamily in plant-virus interactions. Other initiation factors such as eIF4G could also play a role in plant resistance against viruses. Finally, the potential for developing eIF4E-mediated resistance to plant viruses in the future is discussed. Future research should focus on elucidation of the resistance mechanism and spectrum mediated by eIF4E. Knowledge of a particular plant-virus interaction will help to deepen our understanding of eIF4E and other eukaryotic initiation factors, and their involvement in virus disease control. (Managing editor: Li-Hui Zhao) [source]

Transcriptome analysis of Listeria monocytogenes identifies three groups of genes differently regulated by PrfA

Eliane Milohanic
Summary PrfA is the major regulator of Listeria virulence gene expression. This protein is a member of the Crp/Fnr family of transcription regulators. To gain a deeper understanding of the PrfA regulon, we constructed a whole-genome array based on the complete genome sequence of Listeria monocytogenes strain EGDe and evaluated the expression profiles of the wild-type EGDe and a prfA -deleted mutant (EGDe ,prfA). Both strains were grown at 37C in brain,heart infusion broth (BHI) and BHI supplemented with either activated charcoal, a compound known to enhance virulence gene expression, or cellobiose, a sugar reported to downregulate virulence gene expression in spite of full expression of PrfA. We identified three groups of genes that are regulated differently. Group I comprises, in addition to the 10 already known genes, two new genes, lmo2219 and lmo0788, both positively regulated and preceded by a putative PrfA box. Group II comprises eight negatively regulated genes: lmo0278 is preceded by a putative PrfA box, and the remaining seven genes (lmo0178,lmo0184) are organized in an operon. Group III comprises 53 genes, of which only two (lmo0596 and lmo2067) are preceded by a putative PrfA box. Charcoal addition induced upregulation of group I genes but abolished regulation by PrfA of most group III genes. In the presence of cellobiose, all the group I genes were downregulated, whereas group III genes remained fully activated. Group II genes were repressed in all conditions tested. A comparison of the expression profiles between a second L. monocytogenes strain (P14), its spontaneous mutant expressing a constitutively active PrfA variant (P14prfA*) and its corresponding prfA -deleted mutant (P14,prfA) and the EGDe strain revealed interesting strain-specific differences. Sequences strongly similar to a sigma B-dependent promoter were identified upstream of 22 group III genes. These results suggest that PrfA positively regulates a core set of 12 genes preceded by a PrfA box and probably expressed from a sigma A-dependent promoter. In contrast, a second set of PrfA-regulated genes lack a PrfA box and are expressed from a sigma B-dependent promoter. This study reveals that PrfA can act as an activator or a repressor and suggests that PrfA may directly or indirectly activate different sets of genes in association with different sigma factors. [source]

Genome-wide analysis of the general stress response in Bacillus subtilis

Chester W. Price
Bacteria respond to diverse growth-limiting stresses by producing a large set of general stress proteins. In Bacillus subtilis and related Gram-positive pathogens, this response is governed by the ,B transcription factor. To establish the range of cellular functions associated with the general stress response, we compared the transcriptional profiles of wild and mutant strains under conditions that induce ,B activity. Macroarrays representing more than 3900 annotated reading frames of the B. subtilis genome were hybridized to 33P-labelled cDNA populations derived from (i) wild-type and sigB mutant strains that had been subjected to ethanol stress; and (ii) a strain in which ,B expression was controlled by an inducible promoter. On the basis of their significant ,B -dependent expression in three independent experiments, we identified 127 genes as prime candidates for members of the ,B regulon. Of these genes, 30 were known previously or inferred to be ,B dependent by other means. To assist in the analysis of the 97 new genes, we constructed hidden Markov models (HMM) that identified possible ,B recognition sequences preceding 21 of them. To test the HMM and to provide an independent validation of the hybridization experiments, we mapped the ,B -dependent messages for seven representative genes. For all seven, the 5, end of the message lay near typical ,B recognition sequences, and these had been predicted correctly by the HMM for five of the seven examples. Lastly, all 127 gene products were assigned to functional groups by considering their similarity to known proteins. Notably, products with a direct protective function were in the minority. Instead, the general stress response increased relative message levels for known or predicted regulatory proteins, for transporters controlling solute influx and efflux, including potential drug efflux pumps, and for products implicated in carbon metabolism, envelope function and macromolecular turnover. [source]

Overlapping sense and antisense transcription units in Trypanosoma brucei

Matthias Liniger
Procyclins are the major surface glycoproteins of insect-form Trypanosoma brucei. The procyclin expression sites are polycistronic and are transcribed by an ,-amanitin-resistant polymerase, probably RNA polymerase I (Pol I). The expression sites are flanked by transcription units that are sensitive to ,-amanitin, which is a hallmark of Pol II-driven transcription. We have analysed a region of 9.5 kb connecting the EP/PAG2 expression site with the downstream transcription unit. The procyclin expression site is longer than was previously realized and contains an additional gene, procyclin-associated gene 4 (PAG4), and a region of unknown function, the T region, that gives rise to trans -spliced, polyadenylated RNAs containing small open reading frames (ORFs). Two new genes, GU1 and GU2, were identified in the downstream transcription unit on the opposite strand. Unexpectedly, the 3, untranslated region of GU2 and the complementary T transcripts overlap by several hundred base pairs. Replacement of GU2 by a unique tag confirmed that sense and antisense transcription occurred from a single chromosomal locus. Overlapping transcription is stage specific and may extend ,,10 kb in insect-form trypanosomes. The nucleotide composition of the T. brucei genome is such that antisense ORFs occur frequently. If stable mRNAs can be derived from both strands, the coding potential of the genome may be substantially larger than has previously been suspected. [source]

Use of combined in silico expression data and phylogenetic analysis to identify new oocyte genes encoding RNA binding proteins in the mouse

Laurence Drouilhet
Abstract During folliculogenesis, oocytes accumulate maternal mRNAs in preparation for the first steps of early embryogenesis. The processing of oocyte mRNAs is ensured by heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoproteins (hnRNPs) genes that encode RNA binding proteins implied in mRNA biogenesis, translation, alternative splicing, nuclear exportation, and degradation. In the present work, by combining phylogenetic analyses and, when available, in silico expression data, we have identified three new oocyte-expressed genes encoding RNA binding proteins by using two strategies. Firstly, we have identified mouse orthologs of the Car1 gene, known to be involved in regulation of germ cell apoptosis in C. elegans, and of the Squid gene, required for the establishment of anteroposterior polarity in the Drosophila oocyte. Secondly, we have identified, among genes whose ESTs are highly represented in oocyte libraries, a paralog of Poly(A) binding protein,Interacting Protein 2 (Paip2) gene, known to inhibit the interaction of the Poly(A)-Binding Protein with Poly(A) tails of mRNAs. For all of these genes, the expression in oocyte was verified by in situ hybridization. Overall, this work underlines the efficiency of in silico methodologies to identify new genes involved in biological processes such as oogenesis. Mol. Reprod. Dev. 75: 1691,1700, 2008. 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]

In silico mining of EST databases for novel pre-implantation embryo-specific zinc finger protein genes,

Kong-Bung Choo
Abstract Progress in the understanding of early mammalian embryo development has been severely hampered by scarcity of study materials. To circumvent such a constraint, we have developed a strategy that involves a combination of in silico mining of new genes from expressed sequence tags (EST) databases and rapid determination of expression profiles of the dbEST-derived genes using a PCR-based assay and a panel of cDNA libraries derived from different developmental stages and somatic tissues. We demonstrate that in a random sample of 49 independent dbEST-derived zinc finger protein genes mined from a mouse embryonic 2-cell cDNA library, more than three-quarters of these genes are novel. Examination of characteristics of the human orthologues derived from these mouse genes reveals that many of them are associated with human malignancies. Expression studies have further led to the identification of three novel genes that are exclusively expressed in mouse embryos before or up to the 8-cell stage. Two of the genes, designated 2czf45 and 2czf48 (2czf for 2 -cell zinc finger), are zinc finger protein genes coding for a RBCC protein with a RFP domain and a protein with three C2H2 fingers, respectively. The third gene, designated 2cpoz56, codes for a protein with a POZ domain that is often associated with zinc finger proteins. These three genes are candidate genes for regulatory or other functions in early embryogenesis. The strategy described in this report should generally be applicable to rapid and large-scale mining of other classes of rare genes involved in other biological and pathological processes. Mol. Reprod. Dev. 59:249,255, 2001. 2001 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]