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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(5), 673; doi:10.3390/ijms17050673

Morphometric Analysis of Recognized Genes for Autism Spectrum Disorders and Obesity in Relationship to the Distribution of Protein-Coding Genes on Human Chromosomes

Departments of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences and Pediatrics, University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, KS 66160, USA
These authors contributed equally to this work.
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Academic Editor: Nicholas Delihas
Received: 10 February 2016 / Revised: 11 April 2016 / Accepted: 28 April 2016 / Published: 5 May 2016
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Abstract

Mammalian chromosomes are comprised of complex chromatin architecture with the specific assembly and configuration of each chromosome influencing gene expression and function in yet undefined ways by varying degrees of heterochromatinization that result in Giemsa (G) negative euchromatic (light) bands and G-positive heterochromatic (dark) bands. We carried out morphometric measurements of high-resolution chromosome ideograms for the first time to characterize the total euchromatic and heterochromatic chromosome band length, distribution and localization of 20,145 known protein-coding genes, 790 recognized autism spectrum disorder (ASD) genes and 365 obesity genes. The individual lengths of G-negative euchromatin and G-positive heterochromatin chromosome bands were measured in millimeters and recorded from scaled and stacked digital images of 850-band high-resolution ideograms supplied by the International Society of Chromosome Nomenclature (ISCN) 2013. Our overall measurements followed established banding patterns based on chromosome size. G-negative euchromatic band regions contained 60% of protein-coding genes while the remaining 40% were distributed across the four heterochromatic dark band sub-types. ASD genes were disproportionately overrepresented in the darker heterochromatic sub-bands, while the obesity gene distribution pattern did not significantly differ from protein-coding genes. Our study supports recent trends implicating genes located in heterochromatin regions playing a role in biological processes including neurodevelopment and function, specifically genes associated with ASD. View Full-Text
Keywords: G-negative euchromatin; G-positive heterochromatin; chromosome organization; high-resolution chromosome ideograms; protein-coding genes; obesity genes; autism spectrum disorder (ASD) genes G-negative euchromatin; G-positive heterochromatin; chromosome organization; high-resolution chromosome ideograms; protein-coding genes; obesity genes; autism spectrum disorder (ASD) genes
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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McGuire, A.B.; Rafi, S.K.; Manzardo, A.M.; Butler, M.G. Morphometric Analysis of Recognized Genes for Autism Spectrum Disorders and Obesity in Relationship to the Distribution of Protein-Coding Genes on Human Chromosomes. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17, 673.

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