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Genes, Volume 7, Issue 10 (October 2016)

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Open AccessArticle
Effects of MicroRNA-23a on Differentiation and Gene Expression Profiles in 3T3-L1 Adipocytes
Genes 2016, 7(10), 92; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes7100092 - 24 Oct 2016
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2618
Abstract
MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small non-coding RNA molecules that regulate growth, development, and programmed death of cells. A newly-published study has shown that miRNA-23a could regulate 3T3-L1 adipocyte differentiation. Here, we identified miRNA-23a as a negative regulator of 3T3-L1 adipocyte differentiation again. Over-expression of [...] Read more.
MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small non-coding RNA molecules that regulate growth, development, and programmed death of cells. A newly-published study has shown that miRNA-23a could regulate 3T3-L1 adipocyte differentiation. Here, we identified miRNA-23a as a negative regulator of 3T3-L1 adipocyte differentiation again. Over-expression of miRNA-23a inhibited differentiation and decreased lipogenesis as well as down-regulated mRNA and protein expression of both peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR) γ and fatty acid binding protein (FABP) 4, whereas knock down of miRNA-23a showed the opposite effects on differentiation as well as increasing the number of apoptotic cells. Additionally, digital gene expression profiling sequencing (DGE-Seq) was used to assay changes in gene expression profiles following alterations in the level of miR-23a. In total, over-expression or knock down of miRNA-23a significantly changed the expression of 313 and 425 genes, respectively. Gene Ontology (GO) and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) analyses indicated that these genes were mainly involved in the stress response, immune system, metabolism, cell cycle, among other pathways. Additionally, the signal transducer and activator of transcription 1 (Stat1) was shown to be a target of miRNA-23a by computational and dual-luciferase reporter assays that indicated Janus Kinase (Jak)-Stat signal pathway was implicated in regulating adipogenesis mediated by miRNA-23a in adipocytes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessArticle
Identification, Characterization and Expression of Methuselah-Like Genes in Dastarcus helophoroides (Coleoptera: Bothrideridae)
Genes 2016, 7(10), 91; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes7100091 - 21 Oct 2016
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1502
Abstract
Dastarcus helophoroides, which has a relatively longer lifespan compared to other insects, is one of the most effective natural enemies of many large-body long-horned beetles. Methuselah (Mth) is associated with the lifespan, stress resistance, and reproduction in Drosophila melanogaster, but Mth [...] Read more.
Dastarcus helophoroides, which has a relatively longer lifespan compared to other insects, is one of the most effective natural enemies of many large-body long-horned beetles. Methuselah (Mth) is associated with the lifespan, stress resistance, and reproduction in Drosophila melanogaster, but Mth is not present in non-drosophiline insects. A number of methuselah-like genes (mth-likes, mthls) have been identified in non-drosophiline insects, but it is still unknown whether they are present in Dastarcus helophoroides. We identified three novel mth-like genes in D. helophoroides: mth-like1, mth-like2, and mth-like5, and carried out bioinformatic analysis based on the full-length nucleic acid sequences and deduced amino acid sequences. Real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) showed variations in expression patterns of mth-like genes in different tissues (highly expressed in reproductive systems) and at different developmental stages, indicating that mth-likes were likely be involved in reproduction and development. The altered mRNA expression in aging adults and under oxidation, high temperature, and starvation stress, indicated that mth-like genes were likely to be involved in aging and the resistance of oxidation, high temperature, and starvation. These results characterize, for the first time, the basic properties of three mth-like genes from D. helophoroides that probably play important roles in development, aging, reproduction, and stress resistance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessArticle
Associated Clinical Disorders Diagnosed by Medical Specialists in 188 FMR1 Premutation Carriers Found in the Last 25 Years in the Spanish Basque Country: A Retrospective Study
Genes 2016, 7(10), 90; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes7100090 - 21 Oct 2016
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1491
Abstract
Fragile X-associated tremor/ataxia syndrome (FXTAS) and fragile X-associated primary ovarian insufficiency (FXPOI) are definitely related to the fragile X mental retardation 1 (FMR1) premutation (PM). Additional medical problems have also been associated with the PM, such as fibromyalgia, endocrine, and psychiatric [...] Read more.
Fragile X-associated tremor/ataxia syndrome (FXTAS) and fragile X-associated primary ovarian insufficiency (FXPOI) are definitely related to the fragile X mental retardation 1 (FMR1) premutation (PM). Additional medical problems have also been associated with the PM, such as fibromyalgia, endocrine, and psychiatric disorders. To improve our understanding in the field, we reviewed all PM carriers and their reasons for any medical referrals from 104 fragile X families molecularly diagnosed in our laboratory and living in the Spanish Basque Country. After signing the written informed consent, we studied their electronic medical records in order to identify the disorders associated with the PM and their frequencies. We obtained clinical data in 188 PM carriers (147 women and 41 men). In women, the frequency of FXPOI (22.61%) was similar to that previously reported in PM carriers. In men, the frequency of definite FXTAS (28.57%) was lower than reported elsewhere. Furthermore, thyroid pathology was associated with the PM, the frequency of hypothyroidism being much higher in the studied region than in the general population (8.84% vs. 0.93%). Finally, we found no association with fibromyalgia or psychiatric problems. These findings represent another population contribution in this field and may be useful for the clinical management of PM carriers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fragile X Syndrome)
Open AccessArticle
Systematic Analysis of the 4-Coumarate:Coenzyme A Ligase (4CL) Related Genes and Expression Profiling during Fruit Development in the Chinese Pear
Genes 2016, 7(10), 89; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes7100089 - 19 Oct 2016
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 2007
Abstract
In plants, 4-coumarate:coenzyme A ligases (4CLs), comprising some of the adenylate-forming enzymes, are key enzymes involved in regulating lignin metabolism and the biosynthesis of flavonoids and other secondary metabolites. Although several 4CL-related proteins were shown to play roles in secondary metabolism, no comprehensive [...] Read more.
In plants, 4-coumarate:coenzyme A ligases (4CLs), comprising some of the adenylate-forming enzymes, are key enzymes involved in regulating lignin metabolism and the biosynthesis of flavonoids and other secondary metabolites. Although several 4CL-related proteins were shown to play roles in secondary metabolism, no comprehensive study on 4CL-related genes in the pear and other Rosaceae species has been reported. In this study, we identified 4CL-related genes in the apple, peach, yangmei, and pear genomes using DNATOOLS software and inferred their evolutionary relationships using phylogenetic analysis, collinearity analysis, conserved motif analysis, and structure analysis. A total of 149 4CL-related genes in four Rosaceous species (pear, apple, peach, and yangmei) were identified, with 30 members in the pear. We explored the functions of several 4CL and acyl-coenzyme A synthetase (ACS) genes during the development of pear fruit by quantitative real-time PCR (qRT-PCR). We found that duplication events had occurred in the 30 4CL-related genes in the pear. These duplicated 4CL-related genes are distributed unevenly across all pear chromosomes except chromosomes 4, 8, 11, and 12. The results of this study provide a basis for further investigation of both the functions and evolutionary history of 4CL-related genes. Full article
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Open AccessReview
RNA Interference in Moths: Mechanisms, Applications, and Progress
Genes 2016, 7(10), 88; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes7100088 - 19 Oct 2016
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 1968
Abstract
The vast majority of lepidopterans, about 90%, are moths. Some moths, particularly their caterpillars, are major agricultural and forestry pests in many parts of the world. However, some other members of moths, such as the silkworm Bombyx mori, are famous for their [...] Read more.
The vast majority of lepidopterans, about 90%, are moths. Some moths, particularly their caterpillars, are major agricultural and forestry pests in many parts of the world. However, some other members of moths, such as the silkworm Bombyx mori, are famous for their economic value. Fire et al. in 1998 initially found that exogenous double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) can silence the homolog endogenous mRNA in organisms, which is called RNA interference (RNAi). Soon after, the RNAi technique proved to be very promising not only in gene function determination but also in pest control. However, later studies demonstrate that performing RNAi in moths is not as straightforward as shown in other insect taxa. Nevertheless, since 2007, especially after 2010, an increasing number of reports have been published that describe successful RNAi experiments in different moth species either on gene function analysis or on pest management exploration. So far, more than 100 peer-reviewed papers have reported successful RNAi experiments in moths, covering 10 families and 25 species. By using classic and novel dsRNA delivery methods, these studies effectively silence the expression of various target genes and determine their function in larval development, reproduction, immunology, resistance against chemicals, and other biological processes. In addition, a number of laboratory and field trials have demonstrated that RNAi is also a potential strategy for moth pest management. In this review, therefore, we summarize and discuss the mechanisms and applications of the RNAi technique in moths by focusing on recent progresses. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue RNA Interference 2016)
Open AccessReview
Molecular Correlates and Recent Advancements in the Diagnosis and Screening of FMR1-Related Disorders
Genes 2016, 7(10), 87; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes7100087 - 14 Oct 2016
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2067
Abstract
Fragile X syndrome (FXS) is the most common monogenic cause of intellectual disability and autism. Molecular diagnostic testing of FXS and related disorders (fragile X-associated primary ovarian insufficiency (FXPOI) and fragile X-associated tremor/ataxia syndrome (FXTAS)) relies on a combination of polymerase chain reaction [...] Read more.
Fragile X syndrome (FXS) is the most common monogenic cause of intellectual disability and autism. Molecular diagnostic testing of FXS and related disorders (fragile X-associated primary ovarian insufficiency (FXPOI) and fragile X-associated tremor/ataxia syndrome (FXTAS)) relies on a combination of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and Southern blot (SB) for the fragile X mental retardation 1 (FMR1) CGG-repeat expansion and methylation analyses. Recent advancements in PCR-based technologies have enabled the characterization of the complete spectrum of CGG-repeat mutation, with or without methylation assessment, and, as a result, have reduced our reliance on the labor- and time-intensive SB, which is the gold standard FXS diagnostic test. The newer and more robust triplet-primed PCR or TP-PCR assays allow the mapping of AGG interruptions and enable the predictive analysis of the risks of unstable CGG expansion during mother-to-child transmission. In this review, we have summarized the correlation between several molecular elements, including CGG-repeat size, methylation, mosaicism and skewed X-chromosome inactivation, and the extent of clinical involvement in patients with FMR1-related disorders, and reviewed key developments in PCR-based methodologies for the molecular diagnosis of FXS, FXTAS and FXPOI, and large-scale (CGG)n expansion screening in newborns, women of reproductive age and high-risk populations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fragile X Syndrome)
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Open AccessArticle
Methylation Analysis of DNA Mismatch Repair Genes Using DNA Derived from the Peripheral Blood of Patients with Endometrial Cancer: Epimutation in Endometrial Carcinogenesis
Genes 2016, 7(10), 86; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes7100086 - 14 Oct 2016
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2795
Abstract
Germline mutation of DNA mismatch repair (MMR) genes is a cause of Lynch syndrome. Methylation of MutL homolog 1 (MLH1) and MutS homolog 2 (MSH2) has been detected in peripheral blood cells of patients with colorectal cancer. This methylation [...] Read more.
Germline mutation of DNA mismatch repair (MMR) genes is a cause of Lynch syndrome. Methylation of MutL homolog 1 (MLH1) and MutS homolog 2 (MSH2) has been detected in peripheral blood cells of patients with colorectal cancer. This methylation is referred to as epimutation. Methylation of these genes has not been studied in an unselected series of endometrial cancer cases. Therefore, we examined methylation of MLH1, MSH2, and MSH6 promoter regions of peripheral blood cells in 206 patients with endometrial cancer using a methylation-specific polymerase chain reaction (MSP). Germline mutation of MMR genes, microsatellite instability (MSI), and immunohistochemistry (IHC) were also analyzed in each case with epimutation. MLH1 epimutation was detected in a single patient out of a total of 206 (0.49%)—1 out of 58 (1.72%) with an onset age of less than 50 years. The patient with MLH1 epimutation showed high level MSI (MSI-H), loss of MLH1 expression and had developed endometrial cancer at 46 years old, complicated with colorectal cancer. No case had epimutation of MSH2 or MSH6. The MLH1 epimutation detected in a patient with endometrial cancer may be a cause of endometrial carcinogenesis. This result indicates that it is important to check epimutation in patients with endometrial cancer without a germline mutation of MMR genes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cancer Genetics)
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Open AccessCase Report
Congenital Cataracts and Gut Dysmotility in a DYNC1H1 Dyneinopathy Patient
Genes 2016, 7(10), 85; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes7100085 - 14 Oct 2016
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1620
Abstract
Whole exome sequencing continues to end the diagnostic odyssey for a number of patients and expands our knowledge of phenotypes associated with gene mutations. We describe an 11-year-old female patient with a constellation of symptoms including congenital cataracts, gut dysmotility, sensory neuropathy, and [...] Read more.
Whole exome sequencing continues to end the diagnostic odyssey for a number of patients and expands our knowledge of phenotypes associated with gene mutations. We describe an 11-year-old female patient with a constellation of symptoms including congenital cataracts, gut dysmotility, sensory neuropathy, and bifrontal polymicrogyria. Whole exome sequencing was performed and identified a de novo heterozygous missense mutation in the ATPase motor domain of cytoplasmic dynein heavy chain 1 (DYNC1H1), which is known to be involved in neuronal migration and retrograde axonal transport. The mutation was found to be highly damaging by multiple prediction programs. The residue is highly conserved, and reported mutations in this gene result in a variety of phenotypes similar to that of our patient. We report only the second case of congenital cataracts and the first of gut dysmotility in a patient with DYNC1H1, thus expanding the spectrum of disease seen in DYNC1H1 dyneinopathies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Human Genomics and Genetic Diseases)
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Open AccessArticle
Identification of Long Non‐Coding RNAs Deregulated in Multiple Myeloma Cells Resistant to Proteasome Inhibitors
Genes 2016, 7(10), 84; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes7100084 - 06 Oct 2016
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2198
Abstract
While the clinical benefit of proteasome inhibitors (PIs) for multiple myeloma (MM) treatment remains unchallenged, dose‐limiting toxicities and the inevitable emergence of drug resistance limit their long‐term utility. Disease eradication is compromised by drug resistance that is either present de novo or therapy‐induced, [...] Read more.
While the clinical benefit of proteasome inhibitors (PIs) for multiple myeloma (MM) treatment remains unchallenged, dose‐limiting toxicities and the inevitable emergence of drug resistance limit their long‐term utility. Disease eradication is compromised by drug resistance that is either present de novo or therapy‐induced, which accounts for the majority of tumor relapses and MM‐related deaths. Non‐coding RNAs (ncRNAs) are a broad class of RNA molecules, including long non‐coding RNAs (lncRNAs), that do not encode proteins but play a major role in regulating the fundamental cellular processes that control cancer initiation, metastasis, and therapeutic resistance. While lncRNAs have recently attracted significant attention as therapeutic targets to potentially improve cancer treatment, identification of lncRNAs that are deregulated in cells resistant to PIs has not been previously addressed. We have modeled drug resistance by generating three MM cell lines with acquired resistance to either bortezomib, carfilzomib, or ixazomib. Genome‐wide profiling identified lncRNAs that were significantly deregulated in all three PIresistant cell lines relative to the drug‐sensitive parental cell line. Strikingly, certain lncRNAs deregulated in the three PI‐resistant cell lines were also deregulated in MM plasma cells isolated from newly diagnosed patients compared to healthy plasma cells. Taken together, these preliminary studies strongly suggest that lncRNAs represent potential therapeutic targets to prevent or overcome drug resistance. More investigations are ongoing to expand these initial studies in a greater number of MM patients to better define lncRNAs signatures that contribute to PI resistance in MM. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue microRNAs and Other Non-Coding RNAs in Human Diseases)
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Open AccessArticle
Downregulation of Enhancer of Zeste Homolog 2 (EZH2) is essential for the Induction of Autophagy and Apoptosis in Colorectal Cancer Cells
Genes 2016, 7(10), 83; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes7100083 - 03 Oct 2016
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 2424
Abstract
Increasing evidence indicates that elevated expression of enhancer of zeste homolog 2 gene (EZH2) in many human malignant tumors acts a significant role in the oncogenic process. However, the underlying molecular mechanism is still unclarified. It is evident that apoptosis and autophagy of [...] Read more.
Increasing evidence indicates that elevated expression of enhancer of zeste homolog 2 gene (EZH2) in many human malignant tumors acts a significant role in the oncogenic process. However, the underlying molecular mechanism is still unclarified. It is evident that apoptosis and autophagy of tumor cells is crucial for the tumorigenesis and progression of cancer, however, the exact role of EZH2 plays in apoptosis and autophagy has not been fully elucidated in colorectal cancer (CRC). Our previous study found that the expression level of EZH2 was higher in CRC tumor tissues than in the paired normal tissues using immunohistochemical analysis. We also recently found that the autophagy‐related gene‐related protein Ambra1 plays an important role in the autophagy pathway in CRC cells. In this study, mRNA and protein expression of EZH2 in four CRC cell lines were tested at first and RKO and HCT116 cells showed the highest levels among them. Here we transfected with EZH2‐shRNA, or added DZNep (an EZH2 inhibitor) to RKO and HCT116 cells in order to detect the effect of EZH2 on autophagy via determining the change of the protein expression of LC3 and Ambra1. The outcome indicated an obvious decrease of autophagy level in cells transfected with EZH2‐shRNA or DZNep. We also found the apoptotic rate of cells was elevated significantly after downregulation of EZH2. In addition, compared to control group, CRC cells transfected with EZH2‐shRNA or added DZNep revealed a significantly increased G1 cell cycle rate and an obvious decrease in the G2 cell cycle rate. Further analysis showed that knockdown of EZH2 induced cell-cycle arrest in CRC cells. Meanwhile, downregulation of EZH2 in CRC cells induces autophagy and apoptosis. Taken together, our results suggest that EZH2 plays a critical role in autophagy and apoptosis in the progression of CRC, which potentially facilitates the development of an ideal strategy for combating colorectal cancer. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue RNA Interference 2016)
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Open AccessArticle
OprD Repression upon Metal Treatment Requires the RNA Chaperone Hfq in Pseudomonas aeruginosa
Genes 2016, 7(10), 82; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes7100082 - 03 Oct 2016
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 3184
Abstract
The metal‐specific CzcRS two‐component system in Pseudomonas aeruginosa is involved in the repression of the OprD porin, causing in turn carbapenem antibiotic resistance in the presence of high zinc concentration. It has also been shown that CzcR is able to directly regulate the [...] Read more.
The metal‐specific CzcRS two‐component system in Pseudomonas aeruginosa is involved in the repression of the OprD porin, causing in turn carbapenem antibiotic resistance in the presence of high zinc concentration. It has also been shown that CzcR is able to directly regulate the expression of multiple genes including virulence factors. CzcR is therefore an important regulator connecting (i) metal response, (ii) pathogenicity and (iii) antibiotic resistance in P. aeruginosa. Recent data have suggested that other regulators could negatively control oprD expression in the presence of zinc. Here we show that the RNA chaperone Hfq is a key factor acting independently of CzcR for the repression of oprD upon Zn treatment. Additionally, we found that an Hfq‐dependent mechanism is necessary for the localization of CzcR to the oprD promoter, mediating oprD transcriptional repression. Furthermore, in the presence of Cu, CopR, the transcriptional regulator of the CopRS two‐component system also requires Hfq for oprD repression. Altogether, these results suggest important roles for this RNA chaperone in the context of environment‐sensing and antibiotic resistance in P. aeruginosa. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Virulence Gene Regulation in Bacteria)
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Open AccessReview
The SaeRS Two‐Component System of Staphylococcus aureus
Genes 2016, 7(10), 81; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes7100081 - 03 Oct 2016
Cited by 36 | Viewed by 2904
Abstract
In the Gram‐positive pathogenic bacterium Staphylococcus aureus, the SaeRS twocomponent system (TCS) plays a major role in controlling the production of over 20 virulence factors including hemolysins, leukocidins, superantigens, surface proteins, and proteases. The SaeRS TCS is composed of the sensor histidine kinase [...] Read more.
In the Gram‐positive pathogenic bacterium Staphylococcus aureus, the SaeRS twocomponent system (TCS) plays a major role in controlling the production of over 20 virulence factors including hemolysins, leukocidins, superantigens, surface proteins, and proteases. The SaeRS TCS is composed of the sensor histidine kinase SaeS, response regulator SaeR, and two auxiliary proteins SaeP and SaeQ. Since its discovery in 1994, the sae locus has been studied extensively, and its contributions to staphylococcal virulence and pathogenesis have been well documented and understood; however, the molecular mechanism by which the SaeRS TCS receives and processes cognate signals is not. In this article, therefore, we review the literature focusing on the signaling mechanism and its interaction with other global regulators. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Virulence Gene Regulation in Bacteria)
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Open AccessReview
Metabolic Genes within Cyanophage Genomes: Implications for Diversity and Evolution
Genes 2016, 7(10), 80; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes7100080 - 29 Sep 2016
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1994
Abstract
Cyanophages, a group of viruses specifically infecting cyanobacteria, are genetically diverse and extensively abundant in water environments. As a result of selective pressure, cyanophages often acquire a range of metabolic genes from host genomes. The host-derived genes make a significant contribution to the [...] Read more.
Cyanophages, a group of viruses specifically infecting cyanobacteria, are genetically diverse and extensively abundant in water environments. As a result of selective pressure, cyanophages often acquire a range of metabolic genes from host genomes. The host-derived genes make a significant contribution to the ecological success of cyanophages. In this review, we summarize the host-derived metabolic genes, as well as their origin and roles in cyanophage evolution and important host metabolic pathways, such as the light-dependent reactions of photosynthesis, the pentose phosphate pathway, nutrient acquisition and nucleotide biosynthesis. We also discuss the suitability of the host-derived metabolic genes as potential diagnostic markers for the detection of genetic diversity of cyanophages in natural environments. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Microbial Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessArticle
Genome-Wide Identification, Characterization and Expression Profiling of ADF Family Genes in Solanum lycopersicum L.
Genes 2016, 7(10), 79; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes7100079 - 29 Sep 2016
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1980
Abstract
The actin depolymerizing factor (ADF) proteins have growth, development, defense-related and growth regulatory functions in plants. The present study used genome-wide analysis to investigate ADF family genes in tomato. Eleven tomato ADF genes were identified and differential expression patterns were found in different [...] Read more.
The actin depolymerizing factor (ADF) proteins have growth, development, defense-related and growth regulatory functions in plants. The present study used genome-wide analysis to investigate ADF family genes in tomato. Eleven tomato ADF genes were identified and differential expression patterns were found in different organs. SlADF6 was preferentially expressed in roots, suggesting its function in root development. SlADF1, SlADF3 and SlADF10 were predominately expressed in the flowers compared to the other organs and specifically in the stamen compared to other flower parts, indicating their potential roles in pollen development. The comparatively higher expression of SlADF3 and SlADF11 at early fruit developmental stages might implicate them in determining final fruit size. SlADF5 and SlADF8 had relatively higher levels of expression five days after the breaker stage of fruit development, suggesting their possible role in fruit ripening. Notably, six genes were induced by cold and heat, seven by drought, five by NaCl, and four each by abscisic acid (ABA), jasmonic acid (JA) and wounding treatments. The differential expression patterns of the SlADF genes under different types of stresses suggested their function in stress tolerance in tomato plants. Our results will be helpful for the functional characterization of ADF genes during organ and fruit development of tomato under different stresses. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessArticle
Cloning and Expression Analysis of MEP Pathway Enzyme-encoding Genes in Osmanthus fragrans
Genes 2016, 7(10), 78; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes7100078 - 29 Sep 2016
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2474
Abstract
The 2-C-methyl-d-erythritol 4-phosphate (MEP) pathway is responsible for the biosynthesis of many crucial secondary metabolites, such as carotenoids, monoterpenes, plastoquinone, and tocopherols. In this study, we isolated and identified 10 MEP pathway genes in the important aromatic plant sweet [...] Read more.
The 2-C-methyl-d-erythritol 4-phosphate (MEP) pathway is responsible for the biosynthesis of many crucial secondary metabolites, such as carotenoids, monoterpenes, plastoquinone, and tocopherols. In this study, we isolated and identified 10 MEP pathway genes in the important aromatic plant sweet osmanthus (Osmanthus fragrans). Multiple sequence alignments revealed that 10 MEP pathway genes shared high identities with other reported proteins. The genes showed distinctive expression profiles in various tissues, or at different flower stages and diel time points. The qRT-PCR results demonstrated that these genes were highly expressed in inflorescences, which suggested a tissue-specific transcript pattern. Our results also showed that OfDXS1, OfDXS2, and OfHDR1 had a clear diurnal oscillation pattern. The isolation and expression analysis provides a strong foundation for further research on the MEP pathway involved in gene function and molecular evolution, and improves our understanding of the molecular mechanism underlying this pathway in plants. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessReview
Modeling Fragile X Syndrome Using Human Pluripotent Stem Cells
Genes 2016, 7(10), 77; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes7100077 - 28 Sep 2016
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 3068
Abstract
Fragile X syndrome (FXS) is the most common heritable form of cognitive impairment. It results from a loss-of-function mutation by a CGG repeat expansion at the 5′ untranslated region of the X-linked fragile X mental retardation 1 (FMR1) gene. Expansion of the CGG [...] Read more.
Fragile X syndrome (FXS) is the most common heritable form of cognitive impairment. It results from a loss-of-function mutation by a CGG repeat expansion at the 5′ untranslated region of the X-linked fragile X mental retardation 1 (FMR1) gene. Expansion of the CGG repeats beyond 200 copies results in protein deficiency by leading to aberrant methylation of the FMR1 promoter and the switch from active to repressive histone modifications. Additionally, the CGGs become increasingly unstable, resulting in high degree of variation in expansion size between and within tissues of affected individuals. It is still unclear how the FMR1 protein (FMRP) deficiency leads to disease pathology in neurons. Nor do we know the mechanisms by which the CGG expansion results in aberrant DNA methylation, or becomes unstable in somatic cells of patients, at least in part due to the lack of appropriate animal or cellular models. This review summarizes the current contribution of pluripotent stem cells, mutant human embryonic stem cells, and patient-derived induced pluripotent stem cells to disease modeling of FXS for basic and applied research, including the development of new therapeutic approaches. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fragile X Syndrome)
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Open AccessArticle
Impact of the Autism-Associated Long Noncoding RNA MSNP1AS on Neuronal Architecture and Gene Expression in Human Neural Progenitor Cells
Genes 2016, 7(10), 76; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes7100076 - 28 Sep 2016
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2278
Abstract
We previously identified the long noncoding RNA (lncRNA) MSNP1AS (moesin pseudogene 1, antisense) as a functional element revealed by genome wide significant association with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). MSNP1AS expression was increased in the postmortem cerebral cortex of individuals with ASD and particularly [...] Read more.
We previously identified the long noncoding RNA (lncRNA) MSNP1AS (moesin pseudogene 1, antisense) as a functional element revealed by genome wide significant association with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). MSNP1AS expression was increased in the postmortem cerebral cortex of individuals with ASD and particularly in individuals with the ASD-associated genetic markers on chromosome 5p14.1. Here, we mimicked the overexpression of MSNP1AS observed in postmortem ASD cerebral cortex in human neural progenitor cell lines to determine the impact on neurite complexity and gene expression. ReNcell CX and SK-N-SH were transfected with an overexpression vector containing full-length MSNP1AS. Neuronal complexity was determined by the number and length of neuronal processes. Gene expression was determined by strand-specific RNA sequencing. MSNP1AS overexpression decreased neurite number and neurite length in both human neural progenitor cell lines. RNA sequencing revealed changes in gene expression in proteins involved in two biological processes: protein synthesis and chromatin remodeling. These data indicate that overexpression of the ASD-associated lncRNA MSNP1AS alters the number and length of neuronal processes. The mechanisms by which MSNP1AS overexpression impacts neuronal differentiation may involve protein synthesis and chromatin structure. These same biological processes are also implicated by rare mutations associated with ASD, suggesting convergent mechanisms. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Genetic Mechanism of Psychiatric Disorders)
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Open AccessArticle
Decreased Expression of KIFC1 in Human Testes with Globozoospermic Defects
Genes 2016, 7(10), 75; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes7100075 - 27 Sep 2016
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1650
Abstract
Globozoospermia is a rare (prevalence of <0.1%) but severe male infertility condition. In our previous study, we found that robust KIFC1 immunostaining was detected in the human elongating/elongated spermatids during human acrosomogenesis. However, the relationship between the decreased expression of KIFC1 and human [...] Read more.
Globozoospermia is a rare (prevalence of <0.1%) but severe male infertility condition. In our previous study, we found that robust KIFC1 immunostaining was detected in the human elongating/elongated spermatids during human acrosomogenesis. However, the relationship between the decreased expression of KIFC1 and human globozoospermia remains largely unknown. Testicular biopsies of 30 globozoospermia and 30 obstructive azoospermia patients who underwent infertility evaluation and treatment were utilized in this study. Reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), Western blots, immunohistochemistry, an in vivo model, and intratesticular injection of small inhibitory RNA (siRNA) against the Kifc1 gene were employed, and sperm abnormalities were evaluated by hematoxylin and eosin (H&E) staining and immunocytochemistry. We revealed that the testicular level of KIFC1 mRNA in globozoospermia was significantly reduced compared with that in obstructive azoospermia, and the KIFC1 protein was barely detectable in testicular specimens in 30% (9 of 30) of patients with globozoospermia. Furthermore, knockdown of the Kifc1 gene in mice increased the percentage of sperm with globozoospermic defects (26.5%). Decreased KIFC1 expression was mainly observed in the testes of patients with globozoospermia at the spermatid stage, which may be useful for counseling and management of such patients. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessArticle
Presence of a Prophage Determines Temperature-Dependent Capsule Production in Streptococcus pyogenes
Genes 2016, 7(10), 74; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes7100074 - 24 Sep 2016
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1926
Abstract
A hyaluronic acid capsule is a major virulence factor in the pathogenesis of Streptococcus pyogenes. It acts as an anti-phagocytic agent and adhesin to keratinocytes. The expression of the capsule is primarily regulated at the transcriptional level by the two-component regulatory system [...] Read more.
A hyaluronic acid capsule is a major virulence factor in the pathogenesis of Streptococcus pyogenes. It acts as an anti-phagocytic agent and adhesin to keratinocytes. The expression of the capsule is primarily regulated at the transcriptional level by the two-component regulatory system CovRS, in which CovR acts as a transcriptional repressor. The covRS genes are frequently mutated in many invasive strains, and a subset of the invasive CovRS mutants does not produce a detectable level of the capsule at 37 °C, but produces a significant amount of the capsule at sub-body temperatures. Here, we report that a prophage has a crucial role in this capsule thermoregulation. Passaging CovR-null strains showing capsule thermoregulation using a lab medium produced spontaneous mutants producing a significant amount of the capsule regardless of incubation temperature and this phenotypic change was caused by curing of a particular prophage. The lab strain HSC5 contains three prophages on the chromosome, and only ΦHSC5.3 was cured in all spontaneous mutants. This result indicates that the prophage ΦHSC5.3 plays a crucial role in capsule thermoregulation, most likely by repressing capsule production at 37 °C. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Virulence Gene Regulation in Bacteria)
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Open AccessArticle
Association of XPC Gene Polymorphisms with Colorectal Cancer Risk in a Southern Chinese Population: A Case-Control Study and Meta-Analysis
Genes 2016, 7(10), 73; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes7100073 - 24 Sep 2016
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 1838
Abstract
Xeroderma pigmentosum group C (XPC) is a key component of the nucleotide excision repair (NER) pathway. Dysfunctional XPC protein may impair NER-mediated DNA repair capacity and further lead to genomic instability and carcinogenesis. Two common nonsynonymous polymorphisms in the XPC gene, Lys939Gln (rs2228001 [...] Read more.
Xeroderma pigmentosum group C (XPC) is a key component of the nucleotide excision repair (NER) pathway. Dysfunctional XPC protein may impair NER-mediated DNA repair capacity and further lead to genomic instability and carcinogenesis. Two common nonsynonymous polymorphisms in the XPC gene, Lys939Gln (rs2228001 A > C) and Ala499Val (rs2228000 C > T), have been investigated in various types of cancer. We genotyped these two polymorphisms in 1141 cases with histologically confirmed colorectal cancer (CRC) and 1173 healthy controls to explore their causative association with CRC susceptibility. Overall, no association was observed between these two variants and the risk of CRC. Our meta-analysis also confirmed a lack of overall association. Stratified analyses were performed by age, gender, smoking status, pack-year, drinking status, tumor sites, and Duke’s stages. We found that XPC Lys939Gln polymorphism was significantly associated with an increased CRC risk in subjects at 57 years of age or younger (adjusted odds ratio (OR) = 1.37, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 1.004–1.86, p = 0.047) and non-drinkers (adjusted OR = 1.53, 95% CI = 1.10–2.12, p = 0.011). Our results indicated that XPC Lys939Gln may be a low-penetrance CRC susceptibility polymorphism. Our findings warrant further validation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Human Genomics and Genetic Diseases)
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Open AccessArticle
Transition and Transversion Mutations Are Biased towards GC in Transposons of Chilo suppressalis (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae)
Genes 2016, 7(10), 72; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes7100072 - 24 Sep 2016
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1355
Abstract
Transposons are often regulated by their hosts, and as a result, there are transposons with several mutations within their host organisms. To gain insight into the patterns of the variations, nucleotide substitutions and indels of transposons were analysed in Chilo suppressalis Walker. The [...] Read more.
Transposons are often regulated by their hosts, and as a result, there are transposons with several mutations within their host organisms. To gain insight into the patterns of the variations, nucleotide substitutions and indels of transposons were analysed in Chilo suppressalis Walker. The CsuPLE1.1 is a member of the piggyBac-like element (PLE) family, which belongs to the DNA transposons, and the Csu-Ty3 is a member of the Ty3/gypsy family, which belongs to the RNA transposons. Copies of CsuPLE1.1 and Csu-Ty3 were cloned separately from different C. suppressalis individuals, and then multiple sequence alignments were performed. There were numerous single-base substitutions in CsuPLE1.1 and Csu-Ty3, but only a few insertion and deletion mutations. Similarly, in both transposons, the occurring frequencies of transitions were significantly higher than transversions (p ≤ 0.01). In the single-base substitutions, the most frequently occurring base changes were A→G and T→C in both types of transposons. Additionally, single-base substitution frequencies occurring at positions 1, 2 or 3 (pos1, pos2 or pos3) of a given codon in the element transposase were not significantly different. Both in CsuPLE1.1 and Csu-Ty3, the patterns of nucleotide substitution had the same characteristics and nucleotide mutations were biased toward GC. This research provides a perspective on the understanding of transposon mutation patterns. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessReview
Making Sense of the Tangle: Insights into Chromatin Folding and Gene Regulation
Genes 2016, 7(10), 71; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes7100071 - 23 Sep 2016
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 3484
Abstract
Proximity ligation assays such as circularized chromosome conformation capture and high-throughput chromosome capture assays have shed light on the structural organization of the interphase genome. Functional topologically associating domains (TADs) that constitute the building blocks of genomic organization are disrupted and reconstructed during [...] Read more.
Proximity ligation assays such as circularized chromosome conformation capture and high-throughput chromosome capture assays have shed light on the structural organization of the interphase genome. Functional topologically associating domains (TADs) that constitute the building blocks of genomic organization are disrupted and reconstructed during the cell cycle. Epigenetic memory, as well as the sequence of chromosomes, regulate TAD reconstitution. Sub-TAD domains that are invariant across cell types have been identified, and contacts between these domains, rather than looping, are speculated to drive chromatin folding. Replication domains are established simultaneously with TADs during the cell cycle and the two correlate well in terms of characteristic features, such as lamin association and histone modifications. CCCTC-binding factor (CTCF) and cohesin cooperate across different cell types to regulate genes and genome organization. CTCF elements that demarcate TAD boundaries are commonly disrupted in cancer and promote oncogene activation. Chromatin looping facilitates interactions between distant promoters and enhancers, and the resulting enhanceosome complex promotes gene expression. Deciphering the chromatin tangle requires comprehensive integrative analyses of DNA- and protein-dependent factors that regulate genomic organization. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Genetics and Genomics)
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