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Genes, Volume 8, Issue 11 (November 2017)

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Cover Story (view full-size image) Neo-sex chromosomes derive from the fusion of ancient sex chromosomes with autosomes and usually [...] Read more.
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Open AccessReview Role of Non-Coding RNAs in the Etiology of Bladder Cancer
Genes 2017, 8(11), 339; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110339
Received: 27 August 2017 / Revised: 3 November 2017 / Accepted: 7 November 2017 / Published: 22 November 2017
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Abstract
According to data of the International Agency for Research on Cancer and the World Health Organization (Cancer Incidence in Five Continents, GLOBOCAN, and the World Health Organization Mortality), bladder is among the top ten body locations of cancer globally, with the highest incidence
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According to data of the International Agency for Research on Cancer and the World Health Organization (Cancer Incidence in Five Continents, GLOBOCAN, and the World Health Organization Mortality), bladder is among the top ten body locations of cancer globally, with the highest incidence rates reported in Southern and Western Europe, North America, Northern Africa and Western Asia. Males (M) are more vulnerable to this disease than females (F), despite ample frequency variations in different countries, with a M:F ratio of 4.1:1 for incidence and 3.6:1 for mortality, worldwide. For a long time, bladder cancer was genetically classified through mutations of two genes, fibroblast growth factor receptor 3 (FGFR3, for low-grade, non-invasive papillary tumors) and tumor protein P53 (TP53, for high-grade, muscle-invasive tumors). However, more recently scientists have shown that this disease is far more complex, since genes directly involved are more than 150; so far, it has been described that altered gene expression (up- or down-regulation) may be present for up to 500 coding sequences in low-grade and up to 2300 in high-grade tumors. Non-coding RNAs are essential to explain, at least partially, this ample dysregulation. In this review, we summarize the present knowledge about long and short non-coding RNAs that have been linked to bladder cancer etiology. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue RNA Modification)
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Open AccessArticle Connections between Transcription Downstream of Genes and cis-SAGe Chimeric RNA
Genes 2017, 8(11), 338; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110338
Received: 16 October 2017 / Revised: 10 November 2017 / Accepted: 16 November 2017 / Published: 22 November 2017
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Abstract
cis-Splicing between adjacent genes (cis-SAGe) is being recognized as one way to produce chimeric fusion RNAs. However, its detail mechanism is not clear. Recent study revealed induction of transcriptions downstream of genes (DoGs) under osmotic stress. Here, we investigated the influence of osmotic
[...] Read more.
cis-Splicing between adjacent genes (cis-SAGe) is being recognized as one way to produce chimeric fusion RNAs. However, its detail mechanism is not clear. Recent study revealed induction of transcriptions downstream of genes (DoGs) under osmotic stress. Here, we investigated the influence of osmotic stress on cis-SAGe chimeric RNAs and their connection to DoGs. We found, the absence of induction of at least some cis-SAGe fusions and/or their corresponding DoGs at early time point(s). In fact, these DoGs and their cis-SAGe fusions are inversely correlated. This negative correlation was changed to positive at a later time point. These results suggest a direct competition between the two categories of transcripts when total pool of readthrough transcripts is limited at an early time point. At a later time point, DoGs and corresponding cis-SAGe fusions are both induced, indicating that total readthrough transcripts become more abundant. Finally, we observed overall enhancement of cis-SAGe chimeric RNAs in KCl-treated samples by RNA-Seq analysis. Full article
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Open AccessReview The Obscure World of Integrative and Mobilizable Elements, Highly Widespread Elements that Pirate Bacterial Conjugative Systems
Genes 2017, 8(11), 337; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110337
Received: 12 October 2017 / Revised: 15 November 2017 / Accepted: 15 November 2017 / Published: 22 November 2017
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Abstract
Conjugation is a key mechanism of bacterial evolution that involves mobile genetic elements. Recent findings indicated that the main actors of conjugative transfer are not the well-known conjugative or mobilizable plasmids but are the integrated elements. This paper reviews current knowledge on “integrative
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Conjugation is a key mechanism of bacterial evolution that involves mobile genetic elements. Recent findings indicated that the main actors of conjugative transfer are not the well-known conjugative or mobilizable plasmids but are the integrated elements. This paper reviews current knowledge on “integrative and mobilizable elements” (IMEs) that have recently been shown to be highly diverse and highly widespread but are still rarely described. IMEs encode their own excision and integration and use the conjugation machinery of unrelated co-resident conjugative element for their own transfer. Recent studies revealed a much more complex and much more diverse lifecycle than initially thought. Besides their main transmission as integrated elements, IMEs probably use plasmid-like strategies to ensure their maintenance after excision. Their interaction with conjugative elements reveals not only harmless hitchhikers but also hunters that use conjugative elements as target for their integration or harmful parasites that subvert the conjugative apparatus of incoming elements to invade cells that harbor them. IMEs carry genes conferring various functions, such as resistance to antibiotics, that can enhance the fitness of their hosts and that contribute to their maintenance in bacterial populations. Taken as a whole, IMEs are probably major contributors to bacterial evolution. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Horizontal Gene Transfer)
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Open AccessArticle Assessment of Bifidobacterium Species Using groEL Gene on the Basis of Illumina MiSeq High-Throughput Sequencing
Genes 2017, 8(11), 336; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110336
Received: 31 October 2017 / Accepted: 15 November 2017 / Published: 21 November 2017
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Abstract
The next-generation high-throughput sequencing techniques have introduced a new way to assess the gut’s microbial diversity on the basis of 16S rRNA gene-based microbiota analysis. However, the precise appraisal of the biodiversity of Bifidobacterium species within the gut remains a challenging task because
[...] Read more.
The next-generation high-throughput sequencing techniques have introduced a new way to assess the gut’s microbial diversity on the basis of 16S rRNA gene-based microbiota analysis. However, the precise appraisal of the biodiversity of Bifidobacterium species within the gut remains a challenging task because of the limited resolving power of the 16S rRNA gene in different species. The groEL gene, a protein-coding gene, evolves quickly and thus is useful for differentiating bifidobacteria. Here, we designed a Bifidobacterium-specific primer pair which targets a hypervariable sequence region within the groEL gene that is suitable for precise taxonomic identification and detection of all recognized species of the genus Bifidobacterium so far. The results showed that the novel designed primer set can specifically differentiate Bifidobacterium species from non-bifidobacteria, and as low as 104 cells of Bifidobacterium species can be detected using the novel designed primer set on the basis of Illumina Miseq high-throughput sequencing. We also developed a novel protocol to assess the diversity of Bifidobacterium species in both human and rat feces through high-throughput sequencing technologies using groEL gene as a discriminative marker. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Microbial Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessArticle Differential Expression Patterns of Pleurotus ostreatus Catalase Genes during Developmental Stages and under Heat Stress
Genes 2017, 8(11), 335; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110335
Received: 28 September 2017 / Revised: 6 November 2017 / Accepted: 17 November 2017 / Published: 21 November 2017
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Abstract
Catalases are ubiquitous hydrogen peroxide-detoxifying enzymes. They participate in fungal growth and development, such as mycelial growth and cellular differentiation, and in protecting fungi from oxidative damage under stressful conditions. To investigate the potential functions of catalases in Pleurotus ostreatus, we obtained
[...] Read more.
Catalases are ubiquitous hydrogen peroxide-detoxifying enzymes. They participate in fungal growth and development, such as mycelial growth and cellular differentiation, and in protecting fungi from oxidative damage under stressful conditions. To investigate the potential functions of catalases in Pleurotus ostreatus, we obtained two catalase genes from a draft genome sequence of P. ostreatus, and cloned and characterized them (Po-cat1 and Po-cat2). Po-cat1 (group II) and Po-cat2 (group III) encoded putative peptides of 745 and 528 amino acids, respectively. Furthermore, the gene structures were variant between Po-cat1 and Po-cat2. Further research revealed that these two catalase genes have divergent expression patterns during different developmental stages. Po-cat1/Po-cat1 was at a barely detectable level in mycelia, accumulated gradually during reproductive growth, and was maximal in separated spores. But no catalase activity of Po-cat1 was detected by native-PAGE during any part of the developmental stages. In contrast, high Po-cat2/Po-cat2 expression and Po-cat2 activity found in mycelia were gradually lost during reproductive growth, and at a minimal level in separated spores. In addition, these two genes responded differentially under 32 °C and 40 °C heat stresses. Po-cat1 was up-regulated under both temperature conditions, while Po-cat2 was up-regulated at 32 °C but down-regulated at 40 °C. The accumulation of catalase proteins correlated with gene expression. These results indicate that the two divergent catalases in P. ostreatus may play different roles during development and under heat stress. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessArticle Homoeologous Recombination of the V1r1-V1r2 Gene Cluster of Pheromone Receptors in an Allotetraploid Lineage of Teleosts
Genes 2017, 8(11), 334; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110334
Received: 11 September 2017 / Revised: 30 October 2017 / Accepted: 13 November 2017 / Published: 21 November 2017
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Abstract
In contrast to other olfactory receptor families that exhibit frequent lineage-specific expansions, the vomeronasal type 1 receptor (V1R) family exhibits a canonical six-member repertoire in teleosts. V1r1 and V1r2 are present in no more than one copy in all examined teleosts, including salmons,
[...] Read more.
In contrast to other olfactory receptor families that exhibit frequent lineage-specific expansions, the vomeronasal type 1 receptor (V1R) family exhibits a canonical six-member repertoire in teleosts. V1r1 and V1r2 are present in no more than one copy in all examined teleosts, including salmons, which are ancient polyploids, implying strict evolutionary constraints. However, recent polyploids have not been examined. Here, we identified a young allotetraploid lineage of weatherfishes and investigated their V1r1-V1r2 cluster. We found a novel pattern that the parental V1r1-V1r2 clusters had recombined in the tetraploid genome and that the recombinant was nearly fixed in the tetraploid population. Subsequent analyses suggested strong selective pressure, for both a new combination of paralogs and homogeneity among gene duplicates, acting on the V1r1-V1r2 pair. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Population and Evolutionary Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessArticle Differentially Expressed tRNA-Derived Small RNAs Co-Sediment Primarily with Non-Polysomal Fractions in Drosophila
Genes 2017, 8(11), 333; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110333
Received: 24 October 2017 / Revised: 15 November 2017 / Accepted: 16 November 2017 / Published: 20 November 2017
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (2639 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Recent studies point to the existence of poorly characterized small regulatory RNAs generated from mRNAs, rRNAs and tRNAs. To explore the subcellular location of tRNA-derived small RNAs, 0–1 and 7–8 h Drosophila embryos were fractionated on sucrose density gradients. Analysis of 12,553,921 deep-sequencing
[...] Read more.
Recent studies point to the existence of poorly characterized small regulatory RNAs generated from mRNAs, rRNAs and tRNAs. To explore the subcellular location of tRNA-derived small RNAs, 0–1 and 7–8 h Drosophila embryos were fractionated on sucrose density gradients. Analysis of 12,553,921 deep-sequencing reads from unfractionated and fractionated Drosophila embryos has revealed that tRFs, which are detected mainly from the 5’ends of tRNAs, co-sediment with the non-polysomal fractions. Interestingly, the expression levels of a subset of tRFs change temporally following the maternal-to-zygotic transition in embryos. We detected non-polysomal association of tRFs in S2 cells as well. Differential tRF expression pattern points to developmental significance at the organismal level. These results suggest that tRFs are associated primarily with the non-polysomal complexes in Drosophila embryos and S2 cells. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Non-coding RNAs)
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Open AccessArticle Gene-Based Pathogen Detection: Can We Use qPCR to Predict the Outcome of Diagnostic Metagenomics?
Genes 2017, 8(11), 332; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110332
Received: 29 September 2017 / Revised: 2 November 2017 / Accepted: 14 November 2017 / Published: 20 November 2017
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Abstract
In microbial food safety, molecular methods such as quantitative PCR (qPCR) and next-generation sequencing (NGS) of bacterial isolates can potentially be replaced by diagnostic shotgun metagenomics. However, the methods for pre-analytical sample preparation are often optimized for qPCR, and do not necessarily perform
[...] Read more.
In microbial food safety, molecular methods such as quantitative PCR (qPCR) and next-generation sequencing (NGS) of bacterial isolates can potentially be replaced by diagnostic shotgun metagenomics. However, the methods for pre-analytical sample preparation are often optimized for qPCR, and do not necessarily perform equally well for qPCR and sequencing. The present study investigates, through screening of methods, whether qPCR can be used as an indicator for the optimization of sample preparation for NGS-based shotgun metagenomics with a diagnostic focus. This was used on human fecal samples spiked with 103 or 106 colony-forming units (CFU)/g Campylobacter jejuni, as well as porcine fecal samples spiked with 103 or 106 CFU/g Salmonella typhimurium. DNA was extracted from the samples using variations of two widely used kits. The following quality parameters were measured: DNA concentration, qPCR, DNA fragmentation during library preparation, amount of DNA available for sequencing, amount of sequencing data, distribution of data between samples in a batch, and data insert size; none showed any correlation with the target ratio of the spiking organism detected in sequencing data. Surprisingly, diagnostic metagenomics can have better detection sensitivity than qPCR for samples spiked with 103 CFU/g C. jejuni. The study also showed that qPCR and sequencing results may be different due to inhibition in one of the methods. In conclusion, qPCR cannot uncritically be used as an indicator for the optimization of sample preparation for diagnostic metagenomics. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Genetics and Genomics of Foodborne Pathogens)
Open AccessArticle Evolutionarily Distant Streptophyta Respond Differently to Genotoxic Stress
Genes 2017, 8(11), 331; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110331
Received: 31 August 2017 / Revised: 10 November 2017 / Accepted: 14 November 2017 / Published: 17 November 2017
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Abstract
Research in algae usually focuses on the description and characterization of morpho—and phenotype as a result of adaptation to a particular habitat and its conditions. To better understand the evolution of lineages we characterized responses of filamentous streptophyte green algae of the genera
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Research in algae usually focuses on the description and characterization of morpho—and phenotype as a result of adaptation to a particular habitat and its conditions. To better understand the evolution of lineages we characterized responses of filamentous streptophyte green algae of the genera Klebsormidium and Zygnema, and of a land plant—the moss Physcomitrella patens—to genotoxic stress that might be relevant to their environment. We studied the induction and repair of DNA double strand breaks (DSBs) elicited by the radiomimetic drug bleomycin, DNA single strand breaks (SSB) as consequence of base modification by the alkylation agent methyl methanesulfonate (MMS) and of ultra violet (UV)-induced photo-dimers, because the mode of action of these three genotoxic agents is well understood. We show that the Klebsormidium and Physcomitrella are similarly sensitive to introduced DNA lesions and have similar rates of DSBs repair. In contrast, less DNA damage and higher repair rate of DSBs was detected in Zygnema, suggesting different mechanisms of maintaining genome integrity in response to genotoxic stress. Nevertheless, contrary to fewer detected lesions is Zygnema more sensitive to genotoxic treatment than Klebsormidium and Physcomitrella Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue DNA Damage Responses in Plants)
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Open AccessArticle The HMGA1 Pseudogene 7 Induces miR-483 and miR-675 Upregulation by Activating Egr1 through a ceRNA Mechanism
Genes 2017, 8(11), 330; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110330
Received: 31 October 2017 / Revised: 8 November 2017 / Accepted: 9 November 2017 / Published: 17 November 2017
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Abstract
Several studies have established that pseudogene mRNAs can work as competing endogenous RNAs and, when deregulated, play a key role in the onset of human neoplasias. Recently, we have isolated two HMGA1 pseudogenes, HMGA1P6 and HMGA1P7. These pseudogenes have a critical role
[...] Read more.
Several studies have established that pseudogene mRNAs can work as competing endogenous RNAs and, when deregulated, play a key role in the onset of human neoplasias. Recently, we have isolated two HMGA1 pseudogenes, HMGA1P6 and HMGA1P7. These pseudogenes have a critical role in cancer progression, acting as micro RNA (miRNA) sponges for HMGA1 and other cancer-related genes. HMGA1 pseudogenes were found overexpressed in several human carcinomas, and their expression levels positively correlate with an advanced cancer stage and a poor prognosis. In order to investigate the molecular alterations following HMGA1 pseudogene 7 overexpression, we carried out miRNA sequencing analysis on HMGA1P7 overexpressing mouse embryonic fibroblasts. Intriguingly, the most upregulated miRNAs were miR-483 and miR-675 that have been described as key regulators in cancer progression. Here, we report that HMGA1P7 upregulates miR-483 and miR-675 through a competing endogenous RNA mechanism with Egr1, a transcriptional factor that positively regulates miR-483 and miR-675 expression. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Non-coding RNAs)
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Open AccessArticle Flanking Variation Influences Rates of Stutter in Simple Repeats
Genes 2017, 8(11), 329; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110329
Received: 29 September 2017 / Revised: 7 November 2017 / Accepted: 7 November 2017 / Published: 17 November 2017
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (2651 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
It has been posited that the longest uninterrupted stretch (LUS) of tandem repeats, as defined by the number of exactly matching repeating motif units, is a better predictor of rates of stutter than the parental allele length (PAL). While there are cases where
[...] Read more.
It has been posited that the longest uninterrupted stretch (LUS) of tandem repeats, as defined by the number of exactly matching repeating motif units, is a better predictor of rates of stutter than the parental allele length (PAL). While there are cases where this hypothesis is likely correct, such as the 9.3 allele in the TH01 locus, there can be situations where it may not apply as well. For example, the PAL may capture flanking indel variations while remaining insensitive to polymorphisms in the repeat, and these haplotypic changes may impact the stutter rate. To address this, rates of stutter were contrasted against the LUS as well as the PAL on different flanking haplotypic backgrounds. This study shows that rates of stutter can vary substantially depending on the flanking haplotype, and while there are cases where the LUS is a better predictor of stutter than the PAL, examples to the contrary are apparent in commonly assayed forensic markers. Further, flanking variation that is 7 bp from the repeat region can impact rates of stutter. These findings suggest that non-proximal effects, such as DNA secondary structure, may be impacting the rates of stutter in common forensic short tandem repeat markers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Forensic Genomics)
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Open AccessArticle Identification of the Caprine Keratin-Associated Protein 20-2 (KAP20-2) Gene and Its Effect on Cashmere Traits
Genes 2017, 8(11), 328; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110328
Received: 27 September 2017 / Revised: 9 November 2017 / Accepted: 13 November 2017 / Published: 17 November 2017
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Abstract
The gene encoding the high glycine/tyrosine keratin-associated protein 20-2 (KAP20-2) gene has been described in humans, but has not been identified in any livestock species. A search for similar sequences in the caprine genome using the human KAP20-2 gene (KRTAP20-2) revealed
[...] Read more.
The gene encoding the high glycine/tyrosine keratin-associated protein 20-2 (KAP20-2) gene has been described in humans, but has not been identified in any livestock species. A search for similar sequences in the caprine genome using the human KAP20-2 gene (KRTAP20-2) revealed a homologous sequence on chromosome 1. Three different banding patterns representing distinct sequences (AC) in Longdong cashmere goats were identified using polymerase chain reaction-single stranded conformational polymorphism (PCR-SSCP) analysis. These sequences shared high sequence similarity with the human and mouse KRTAP20-2 sequences, suggesting that AC are caprine variants of the human and mouse genes. Four single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) were identified, and three of them were non-synonymous. KRTAP20-2 was found to be expressed in secondary hair follicles, but not in heart, liver, lung, kidney, spleen, or longissimus dorsi muscle. The presence of A was associated with increased cashmere fibre weight, while the presence of B was associated with a decrease in cashmere fibre weight and curly fibre length. Goats with genotype AA had a higher cashmere fibre weight and a higher curly fibre length than those with genotypes AB or BB. These results indicate that caprine KRTAP20-2 variation may have value as a genetic marker for improving cashmere fibre weight. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessArticle New Insights into Phasmatodea Chromosomes
Genes 2017, 8(11), 327; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110327
Received: 19 September 2017 / Revised: 13 November 2017 / Accepted: 13 November 2017 / Published: 17 November 2017
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Abstract
Currently, approximately 3000 species of stick insects are known; however, chromosome numbers, which range between 21 and 88, are known for only a few of these insects. Also, centromere banding staining (C-banding) patterns were described for fewer than 10 species, and fluorescence in
[...] Read more.
Currently, approximately 3000 species of stick insects are known; however, chromosome numbers, which range between 21 and 88, are known for only a few of these insects. Also, centromere banding staining (C-banding) patterns were described for fewer than 10 species, and fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) was applied exclusively in two Leptynia species. Interestingly, 10–25% of stick insects (Phasmatodea) are obligatory or facultative parthenogenetic. As clonal and/or bisexual reproduction can affect chromosomal evolution, stick insect karyotypes need to be studied more intensely. Chromosome preparation from embryos of five Phasmatodea species (Medauroidea extradentata, Sungaya inexpectata, Sipyloidea sipylus, Phaenopharos khaoyaiensis, and Peruphasma schultei) from four families were studied here by C-banding and FISH applying ribosomal deoxyribonucleic acid (rDNA) and telomeric repeat probes. For three species, data on chromosome numbers and structure were obtained here for the first time, i.e., S. inexpectata, P. khaoyaiensis, and P. schultei. Large C-positive regions enriched with rDNA were identified in all five studied, distantly related species. Some of these C-positive blocks were enriched for telomeric repeats, as well. Chromosomal evolution of stick insects is characterized by variations in chromosome numbers as well as transposition and amplification of repetitive DNA sequences. Here, the first steps were made towards identification of individual chromosomes in Phasmatodea. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chromosomal Evolution)
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Open AccessArticle Taxonomic Classification for Living Organisms Using Convolutional Neural Networks
Genes 2017, 8(11), 326; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110326
Received: 11 September 2017 / Revised: 5 November 2017 / Accepted: 14 November 2017 / Published: 17 November 2017
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (4654 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Taxonomic classification has a wide-range of applications such as finding out more about evolutionary history. Compared to the estimated number of organisms that nature harbors, humanity does not have a thorough comprehension of to which specific classes they belong. The classification of living
[...] Read more.
Taxonomic classification has a wide-range of applications such as finding out more about evolutionary history. Compared to the estimated number of organisms that nature harbors, humanity does not have a thorough comprehension of to which specific classes they belong. The classification of living organisms can be done in many machine learning techniques. However, in this study, this is performed using convolutional neural networks. Moreover, a DNA encoding technique is incorporated in the algorithm to increase performance and avoid misclassifications. The algorithm proposed outperformed the state of the art algorithms in terms of accuracy and sensitivity, which illustrates a high potential for using it in many other applications in genome analysis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Technologies and Resources for Genetics)
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Open AccessArticle Development of Novel Polymorphic EST-SSR Markers in Bailinggu (Pleurotus tuoliensis) for Crossbreeding
Genes 2017, 8(11), 325; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110325
Received: 16 October 2017 / Revised: 16 October 2017 / Accepted: 8 November 2017 / Published: 17 November 2017
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (1253 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Identification of monokaryons and their mating types and discrimination of hybrid offspring are key steps for the crossbreeding of Pleurotus tuoliensis (Bailinggu). However, conventional crossbreeding methods are troublesome and time consuming. Using RNA-seq technology, we developed new expressed sequence tag-simple sequence repeat (EST-SSR)
[...] Read more.
Identification of monokaryons and their mating types and discrimination of hybrid offspring are key steps for the crossbreeding of Pleurotus tuoliensis (Bailinggu). However, conventional crossbreeding methods are troublesome and time consuming. Using RNA-seq technology, we developed new expressed sequence tag-simple sequence repeat (EST-SSR) markers for Bailinggu to easily and rapidly identify monokaryons and their mating types, genetic diversity and hybrid offspring. We identified 1110 potential EST-based SSR loci from a newly-sequenced Bailinggu transcriptome and then randomly selected 100 EST-SSRs for further validation. Results showed that 39, 43 and 34 novel EST-SSR markers successfully identified monokaryons from their parent dikaryons, differentiated two different mating types and discriminated F1 and F2 hybrid offspring, respectively. Furthermore, a total of 86 alleles were detected in 37 monokaryons using 18 highly informative EST-SSRs. The observed number of alleles per locus ranged from three to seven. Cluster analysis revealed that these monokaryons have a relatively high level of genetic diversity. Transfer rates of the EST-SSRs in the monokaryons of closely-related species Pleurotus eryngii var. ferulae and Pleurotus ostreatus were 72% and 64%, respectively. Therefore, our study provides new SSR markers and an efficient method to enhance the crossbreeding of Bailinggu and closely-related species. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Microbial Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessArticle The Chloroplast Genome of Symplocarpus renifolius: A Comparison of Chloroplast Genome Structure in Araceae
Genes 2017, 8(11), 324; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110324
Received: 5 September 2017 / Revised: 31 October 2017 / Accepted: 6 November 2017 / Published: 16 November 2017
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Abstract
Symplocarpus renifolius is a member of Araceae family that is extraordinarily diverse in appearance. Previous studies on chloroplast genomes in Araceae were focused on duckweeds (Lemnoideae) and root crops (Colocasia, commonly known as taro). Here, we determined the chloroplast genome of
[...] Read more.
Symplocarpus renifolius is a member of Araceae family that is extraordinarily diverse in appearance. Previous studies on chloroplast genomes in Araceae were focused on duckweeds (Lemnoideae) and root crops (Colocasia, commonly known as taro). Here, we determined the chloroplast genome of Symplocarpus renifolius and compared the factors, such as genes and inverted repeat (IR) junctions and performed phylogenetic analysis using other Araceae species. The chloroplast genome of S. renifolius is 158,521 bp and includes 113 genes. A comparison among the Araceae chloroplast genomes showed that infA in Lemna, Spirodela, Wolffiella, Wolffia, Dieffenbachia and Colocasia has been lost or has become a pseudogene and has only been retained in Symplocarpus. In the Araceae chloroplast DNA (cpDNA), psbZ is retained. However, psbZ duplication occurred in Wolffia species and tandem repeats were noted around the duplication regions. A comparison of the IR junction in Araceae species revealed the presence of ycf1 and rps15 in the small single copy region, whereas duckweed species contained ycf1 and rps15 in the IR region. The phylogenetic analyses of the chloroplast genomes revealed that Symplocarpus are a basal group and are sister to the other Araceae species. Consequently, infA deletion or pseudogene events in Araceae occurred after the divergence of Symplocarpus and aquatic plants (duckweeds) in Araceae and duplication events of rps15 and ycf1 occurred in the IR region. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Plant Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessArticle Origin and Evolution of the Neo-Sex Chromosomes in Pamphagidae Grasshoppers through Chromosome Fusion and Following Heteromorphization
Genes 2017, 8(11), 323; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110323
Received: 1 September 2017 / Revised: 6 November 2017 / Accepted: 7 November 2017 / Published: 13 November 2017
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (7694 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
In most phylogenetic lineages, the evolution of sex chromosomes is accompanied by their heteromorphization and degradation of one of them. The neo-sex chromosomes are useful model for studying early stages of these processes. Recently two lineages of the neo-sex chromosomes on different stages
[...] Read more.
In most phylogenetic lineages, the evolution of sex chromosomes is accompanied by their heteromorphization and degradation of one of them. The neo-sex chromosomes are useful model for studying early stages of these processes. Recently two lineages of the neo-sex chromosomes on different stages of heteromorphization was discovered in Pamphagidae family. The neo-sex chromosome heteromorphization was analyzed by generation of DNA probes derived from the neo-Xs and neo-Ys followed with chromosome painting in nineteen species of Pamphagidae family. The homologous regions of the neo-sex chromosomes were determined in closely related species with the painting procedure and image analysis with application of the Visualization of the Specific Signal in Silico software package. Results of these analyses and distribution of C-positive regions in the neo-sex chromosomes revealed details of the heteromorphization of the neo-sex chromosomes in species from both phylogenetic lineages of Pamphagidae grasshoppers. The hypothetical mechanism of the neo-Y degradation was suggested. It includes expansion of different repeats from the proximal neo-Y chromosome region by inversions, spreading them towards distal region. Amplification of these repeats leads to formation of C-positive regions and elimination of the C-negative regions located between them. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chromosomal Evolution)
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Open AccessArticle Transmission Dynamics of HIV-1 Drug Resistance among Treatment-Naïve Individuals in Greece: The Added Value of Molecular Epidemiology to Public Health
Genes 2017, 8(11), 322; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110322
Received: 3 September 2017 / Revised: 5 November 2017 / Accepted: 6 November 2017 / Published: 13 November 2017
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Abstract
The presence of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) drug resistance among drug-naïve patients remains stable, although the proportion of patients with virological failure to therapy is decreasing. The dynamics of transmitted resistance among drug-naïve patients remains largely unknown. The prevalence of non-nucleoside
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The presence of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) drug resistance among drug-naïve patients remains stable, although the proportion of patients with virological failure to therapy is decreasing. The dynamics of transmitted resistance among drug-naïve patients remains largely unknown. The prevalence of non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTI) resistance was 16.9% among treatment-naïve individuals in Greece. We aimed to investigate the transmission dynamics and the effective reproductive number (Re) of the locally transmitted NNRTI resistance. We analyzed sequences with dominant NNRTI resistance mutations (E138A and K103N) found within monophyletic clusters (local transmission networks (LTNs)) from patients in Greece. For the K103N LTN, the Re was >1 between 2008 and the first half of 2013. For all E138A LTNs, the Re was >1 between 1998 and 2015, except the most recent one (E138A_4), where the Re was >1 between 2006 and 2011 and approximately equal to 1 thereafter. K103N and E138A_4 showed similar characteristics with a more recent origin, higher Re during the first years of the sub-epidemics, and a declining trend in the number of transmissions during the last two years. In the remaining LTNs the epidemic was still expanding. Our study highlights the added value of molecular epidemiology to public health. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Microbial Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessArticle Comprehensive Profiling of lincRNAs in Lung Adenocarcinoma of Never Smokers Reveals Their Roles in Cancer Development and Prognosis
Genes 2017, 8(11), 321; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110321
Received: 29 September 2017 / Revised: 28 October 2017 / Accepted: 6 November 2017 / Published: 13 November 2017
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Abstract
Long intergenic non-coding RNA (lincRNA) is a family of gene transcripts, the functions of which are largely unknown. Although cigarette smoking is the main cause for lung cancer, lung cancer in non-smokers is a separate entity and its underlying cause is little known.
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Long intergenic non-coding RNA (lincRNA) is a family of gene transcripts, the functions of which are largely unknown. Although cigarette smoking is the main cause for lung cancer, lung cancer in non-smokers is a separate entity and its underlying cause is little known. Growing evidence suggests lincRNAs play a significant role in cancer development and progression; however, such data is lacking for lung cancer in non-smokers, or those who have never smoked. This study conducted comprehensive profiling of lincRNAs from RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) data of non-smoker patients with lung adenocarcinoma. Both known and novel lincRNAs distinctly segregated tumors from normal tissues. Approximately one third of lincRNAs were differentially expressed between tumors and normal samples and most of them were coordinated with their putative protein gene targets. More importantly, lincRNAs defined two clusters of tumors that were associated with tumor aggressiveness and patient survival. We identified a subset of lincRNAs that were differentially expressed and also associated with patient survival. Very high concordance (R2 = 0.9) was observed for the differentially expressed lincRNAs in the Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) validation set of 85 transcriptomes and the lincRNAs associated with survival from the discovery set were similarly predictive in the validation set. These lincRNAs warrant further investigation as potential diagnostic and prognostic markers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Integrative Genomics and Systems Medicine in Cancer)
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Open AccessArticle Novel Insights into Antiviral Gene Regulation of Red Swamp Crayfish, Procambarus clarkii, Infected with White Spot Syndrome Virus
Genes 2017, 8(11), 320; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110320
Received: 30 September 2017 / Revised: 3 November 2017 / Accepted: 9 November 2017 / Published: 10 November 2017
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Abstract
White spot syndrome virus (WSSV), one of the major pathogens of Procambarus clarkii, has caused severe disruption to the aquaculture industry of P. clarkii in China. To reveal the gene regulatory mechanisms underlying WSSV infection, a comparative transcriptome analysis was performed among
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White spot syndrome virus (WSSV), one of the major pathogens of Procambarus clarkii, has caused severe disruption to the aquaculture industry of P. clarkii in China. To reveal the gene regulatory mechanisms underlying WSSV infection, a comparative transcriptome analysis was performed among WSSV-infected susceptible individuals (GS), viral resistant individuals (GR), and a non-infected control group (GC). A total of 61,349 unigenes were assembled from nine libraries. Subsequently, 515 and 1033 unigenes exhibited significant differential expression in sensitive and resistant crayfish individuals compared to the control group (GC). Many differentially expressed genes (e.g., C-type lectin 4, Peroxinectin, Prophenoloxidase, and Serine/threonine-protein kinase) observed in GR and GS play critical roles in pathogen recognition and viral defense reactions after WSSV infection. Importantly, the glycosaminoglycan biosynthesis-chondroitin sulfate/dermatan sulfate pathway was identified to play critical roles in defense to WSSV infection for resistant crayfish individuals by upregulating the chondroitin sulfate related genes for the synthesis of WSSV-sensitive, functional chondroitin sulfate chains containing E units. Numerous genes and the key pathways identified between resistant and susceptible P. clarkii individuals provide valuable insights regarding antiviral response mechanisms of decapoda species and may help to improve the selective breeding of P. clarkii WSSV-resistance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessArticle Human Organ Tissue Identification by Targeted RNA Deep Sequencing to Aid the Investigation of Traumatic Injury
Genes 2017, 8(11), 319; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110319
Received: 17 October 2017 / Revised: 3 November 2017 / Accepted: 6 November 2017 / Published: 10 November 2017
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Abstract
Molecular analysis of the RNA transcriptome from a putative tissue fragment should permit the assignment of its source to a specific organ, since each will exhibit a unique pattern of gene expression. Determination of the organ source of tissues from crime scenes may
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Molecular analysis of the RNA transcriptome from a putative tissue fragment should permit the assignment of its source to a specific organ, since each will exhibit a unique pattern of gene expression. Determination of the organ source of tissues from crime scenes may aid in shootings and other investigations. We have developed a prototype massively parallel sequencing (MPS) mRNA profiling assay for organ tissue identification that is designed to definitively identify 10 organ/tissue types using a targeted panel of 46 mRNA biomarkers. The identifiable organs and tissues include brain, lung, liver, heart, kidney, intestine, stomach, skeletal muscle, adipose, and trachea. The biomarkers were chosen after iterative specificity testing of numerous candidate genes in various tissue types. The assay is very specific, with little cross-reactivity with non-targeted tissue, and can detect RNA mixtures from different tissues. We also demonstrate the ability of the assay to successful identify the tissue source of origin using a single blind study. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Forensic Genomics)
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Open AccessArticle Next Generation Sequencing of Chromosome-Specific Libraries Sheds Light on Genome Evolution in Paleotetraploid Sterlet (Acipenser ruthenus)
Genes 2017, 8(11), 318; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110318
Received: 20 September 2017 / Revised: 23 October 2017 / Accepted: 31 October 2017 / Published: 10 November 2017
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Abstract
Several whole genome duplication (WGD) events followed by rediploidization took place in the evolutionary history of vertebrates. Acipenserids represent a convenient model group for investigation of the consequences of WGD as their representatives underwent additional WGD events in different lineages resulting in ploidy
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Several whole genome duplication (WGD) events followed by rediploidization took place in the evolutionary history of vertebrates. Acipenserids represent a convenient model group for investigation of the consequences of WGD as their representatives underwent additional WGD events in different lineages resulting in ploidy level variation between species, and these processes are still ongoing. Earlier, we obtained a set of sterlet (Acipenser ruthenus) chromosome-specific libraries by microdissection and revealed that they painted two or four pairs of whole sterlet chromosomes, as well as additional chromosomal regions, depending on rediploidization status and chromosomal rearrangements after genome duplication. In this study, we employed next generation sequencing to estimate the content of libraries derived from different paralogous chromosomes of sterlet. For this purpose, we aligned the obtained reads to the spotted gar (Lepisosteus oculatus) reference genome to reveal syntenic regions between these two species having diverged 360 Mya. We also showed that the approach is effective for synteny prediction at various evolutionary distances and allows one to clearly distinguish paralogous chromosomes in polyploid genomes. We postulated that after the acipenserid-specific WGD sterlet karyotype underwent multiple interchromosomal rearrangements, but different chromosomes were involved in this process unequally. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chromosomal Evolution)
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Open AccessArticle Sequencing and De Novo Assembly of the Toxicodendron radicans (Poison Ivy) Transcriptome
Genes 2017, 8(11), 317; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110317
Received: 31 July 2017 / Revised: 12 October 2017 / Accepted: 12 October 2017 / Published: 10 November 2017
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Abstract
Contact with poison ivy plants is widely dreaded because they produce a natural product called urushiol that is responsible for allergenic contact delayed-dermatitis symptoms lasting for weeks. For this reason, the catchphrase most associated with poison ivy is “leaves of three, let it
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Contact with poison ivy plants is widely dreaded because they produce a natural product called urushiol that is responsible for allergenic contact delayed-dermatitis symptoms lasting for weeks. For this reason, the catchphrase most associated with poison ivy is “leaves of three, let it be”, which serves the purpose of both identification and an appeal for avoidance. Ironically, despite this notoriety, there is a dearth of specific knowledge about nearly all other aspects of poison ivy physiology and ecology. As a means of gaining a more molecular-oriented understanding of poison ivy physiology and ecology, Next Generation DNA sequencing technology was used to develop poison ivy root and leaf RNA-seq transcriptome resources. De novo assembled transcriptomes were analyzed to generate a core set of high quality expressed transcripts present in poison ivy tissue. The predicted protein sequences were evaluated for similarity to SwissProt homologs and InterProScan domains, as well as assigned both GO terms and KEGG annotations. Over 23,000 simple sequence repeats were identified in the transcriptome, and corresponding oligo nucleotide primer pairs were designed. A pan-transcriptome analysis of existing Anacardiaceae transcriptomes revealed conserved and unique transcripts among these species. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Plant Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessReview Genome and Epigenome Surveillance Processes Underlying UV Exposure in Plants
Genes 2017, 8(11), 316; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110316
Received: 20 October 2017 / Revised: 3 November 2017 / Accepted: 3 November 2017 / Published: 9 November 2017
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Abstract
Land plants and other photosynthetic organisms (algae, bacteria) use the beneficial effect of sunlight as a source of energy for the photosynthesis and as a major source of information from the environment. However, the ultraviolet component of sunlight also produces several types of
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Land plants and other photosynthetic organisms (algae, bacteria) use the beneficial effect of sunlight as a source of energy for the photosynthesis and as a major source of information from the environment. However, the ultraviolet component of sunlight also produces several types of damage, which can affect cellular and integrity, interfering with growth and development. In order to reduce the deleterious effects of UV, photosynthetic organisms combine physiological adaptation and several types of DNA repair pathways to avoid dramatic changes in the structure. Therefore, plants may have obtained an evolutionary benefit from combining genome and surveillance processes, to efficiently deal with the deleterious effects of UV radiation. This review will present the different mechanisms activated upon UV exposure that contribute to maintain genome and integrity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue DNA Damage Responses in Plants)
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Open AccessReview Impact of Lateral Transfers on the Genomes of Lepidoptera
Genes 2017, 8(11), 315; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110315
Received: 8 October 2017 / Revised: 31 October 2017 / Accepted: 1 November 2017 / Published: 9 November 2017
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Abstract
Transfer of DNA sequences between species regardless of their evolutionary distance is very common in bacteria, but evidence that horizontal gene transfer (HGT) also occurs in multicellular organisms has been accumulating in the past few years. The actual extent of this phenomenon is
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Transfer of DNA sequences between species regardless of their evolutionary distance is very common in bacteria, but evidence that horizontal gene transfer (HGT) also occurs in multicellular organisms has been accumulating in the past few years. The actual extent of this phenomenon is underestimated due to frequent sequence filtering of “alien” DNA before genome assembly. However, recent studies based on genome sequencing have revealed, and experimentally verified, the presence of foreign DNA sequences in the genetic material of several species of Lepidoptera. Large DNA viruses, such as baculoviruses and the symbiotic viruses of parasitic wasps (bracoviruses), have the potential to mediate these transfers in Lepidoptera. In particular, using ultra-deep sequencing, newly integrated transposons have been identified within baculovirus genomes. Bacterial genes have also been acquired by genomes of Lepidoptera, as in other insects and nematodes. In addition, insertions of bracovirus sequences were present in the genomes of certain moth and butterfly lineages, that were likely corresponding to rearrangements of ancient integrations. The viral genes present in these sequences, sometimes of hymenopteran origin, have been co-opted by lepidopteran species to confer some protection against pathogens. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Horizontal Gene Transfer)
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Open AccessArticle A Microbiomic Analysis in African Americans with Colonic Lesions Reveals Streptococcus sp.VT162 as a Marker of Neoplastic Transformation
Genes 2017, 8(11), 314; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110314
Received: 30 August 2017 / Revised: 19 October 2017 / Accepted: 26 October 2017 / Published: 9 November 2017
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Abstract
Increasing evidence suggests a role of the gut microbiota in colorectal carcinogenesis (CRC). To detect bacterial markers of colorectal cancer in African Americans a metabolomic analysis was performed on fecal water extracts. DNA from stool samples of adenoma and healthy subjects and from
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Increasing evidence suggests a role of the gut microbiota in colorectal carcinogenesis (CRC). To detect bacterial markers of colorectal cancer in African Americans a metabolomic analysis was performed on fecal water extracts. DNA from stool samples of adenoma and healthy subjects and from colon cancer and matched normal tissues was analyzed to determine the microbiota composition (using 16S rDNA) and genomic content (metagenomics). Metagenomic functions with discriminative power between healthy and neoplastic specimens were established. Quantitative Polymerase Chain Reaction (q-PCR) using primers and probes specific to Streptococcus sp. VT_162 were used to validate this bacterium association with neoplastic transformation in stool samples from two independent cohorts of African Americans and Chinese patients with colorectal lesions. The metabolomic analysis of adenomas revealed low amino acids content. The microbiota in both cancer vs. normal tissues and adenoma vs. normal stool samples were different at the 16S rRNA gene level. Cross-mapping of metagenomic data led to 9 markers with significant discriminative power between normal and diseased specimens. These markers identified with Streptococcus sp. VT_162. Q-PCR data showed a statistically significant presence of this bacterium in advanced adenoma and cancer samples in an independent cohort of CRC patients. We defined metagenomic functions from Streptococcus sp. VT_162 with discriminative power among cancers vs. matched normal and adenomas vs. healthy subjects’ stools. Streptococcus sp. VT_162 specific 16S rDNA was validated in an independent cohort. These findings might facilitate non-invasive screening for colorectal cancer. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Intestinal Microbes and Cancer)
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Open AccessArticle High Quality Unigenes and Microsatellite Markers from Tissue Specific Transcriptome and Development of a Database in Clusterbean (Cyamopsis tetragonoloba, L. Taub)
Genes 2017, 8(11), 313; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110313
Received: 23 August 2017 / Revised: 23 October 2017 / Accepted: 6 November 2017 / Published: 9 November 2017
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Abstract
Clusterbean (Cyamopsis tetragonoloba L. Taub), is an important industrial, vegetable and forage crop. This crop owes its commercial importance to the presence of guar gum (galactomannans) in its endosperm which is used as a lubricant in a range of industries. Despite its
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Clusterbean (Cyamopsis tetragonoloba L. Taub), is an important industrial, vegetable and forage crop. This crop owes its commercial importance to the presence of guar gum (galactomannans) in its endosperm which is used as a lubricant in a range of industries. Despite its relevance to agriculture and industry, genomic resources available in this crop are limited. Therefore, the present study was undertaken to generate RNA-Seq based transcriptome from leaf, shoot, and flower tissues. A total of 145 million high quality Illumina reads were assembled using Trinity into 127,706 transcripts and 48,007 non-redundant high quality (HQ) unigenes. We annotated 79% unigenes against Plant Genes from the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), Swiss-Prot, Pfam, gene ontology (GO) and KEGG databases. Among the annotated unigenes, 30,020 were assigned with 116,964 GO terms, 9984 with EC and 6111 with 137 KEGG pathways. At different fragments per kilobase of transcript per millions fragments sequenced (FPKM) levels, genes were found expressed higher in flower tissue followed by shoot and leaf. Additionally, we identified 8687 potential simple sequence repeats (SSRs) with an average frequency of one SSR per 8.75 kb. A total of 28 amplified SSRs in 21 clusterbean genotypes resulted in polymorphism in 13 markers with average polymorphic information content (PIC) of 0.21. We also constructed a database named ‘ClustergeneDB’ for easy retrieval of unigenes and the microsatellite markers. The tissue specific genes identified and the molecular marker resources developed in this study is expected to aid in genetic improvement of clusterbean for its end use. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Genomics and Epigenomics for Trait Improvement)
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Open AccessReview The Small and the Dead: A Review of Ancient DNA Studies Analysing Micromammal Species
Genes 2017, 8(11), 312; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110312
Received: 23 August 2017 / Revised: 13 October 2017 / Accepted: 13 October 2017 / Published: 8 November 2017
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Abstract
The field of ancient DNA (aDNA) has recently been in a state of exponential growth, largely driven by the uptake of Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) techniques. Much of this work has focused on the mammalian megafauna and ancient humans, with comparatively less studies
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The field of ancient DNA (aDNA) has recently been in a state of exponential growth, largely driven by the uptake of Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) techniques. Much of this work has focused on the mammalian megafauna and ancient humans, with comparatively less studies looking at micromammal fauna, despite the potential of these species in testing evolutionary, environmental and taxonomic theories. Several factors make micromammal fauna ideally suited for aDNA extraction and sequencing. Micromammal subfossil assemblages often include the large number of individuals appropriate for population level analyses, and, furthermore, the assemblages are frequently found in cave sites where the constant temperature and sheltered environment provide favourable conditions for DNA preservation. This review looks at studies that include the use of aDNA in molecular analysis of micromammal fauna, in order to examine the wide array of questions that can be answered in the study of small mammals using new palaeogenetic techniques. This study highlights the bias in current aDNA studies and assesses the future use of aDNA as a tool for the study of micromammal fauna. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Novel and Neglected Areas of Ancient DNA Research)
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Open AccessReview Amphibian and Avian Karyotype Evolution: Insights from Lampbrush Chromosome Studies
Genes 2017, 8(11), 311; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110311
Received: 15 September 2017 / Revised: 29 October 2017 / Accepted: 31 October 2017 / Published: 8 November 2017
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Abstract
Amphibian and bird karyotypes typically have a complex organization, which makes them difficult for standard cytogenetic analysis. That is, amphibian chromosomes are generally large, enriched with repetitive elements, and characterized by the absence of informative banding patterns. The majority of avian karyotypes comprise
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Amphibian and bird karyotypes typically have a complex organization, which makes them difficult for standard cytogenetic analysis. That is, amphibian chromosomes are generally large, enriched with repetitive elements, and characterized by the absence of informative banding patterns. The majority of avian karyotypes comprise a small number of relatively large macrochromosomes and numerous tiny morphologically undistinguishable microchromosomes. A good progress in investigation of amphibian and avian chromosome evolution became possible with the usage of giant lampbrush chromosomes typical for growing oocytes. Due to the giant size, peculiarities of organization and enrichment with cytological markers, lampbrush chromosomes can serve as an opportune model for comprehensive high-resolution cytogenetic and cytological investigations. Here, we review the main findings on chromosome evolution in amphibians and birds that were obtained using lampbrush chromosomes. In particular, we discuss the data on evolutionary chromosomal rearrangements, accumulation of polymorphisms, evolution of sex chromosomes as well as chromosomal changes during clonal reproduction of interspecies hybrids. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chromosomal Evolution)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Gut Microbiome and Putative Resistome of Inca and Italian Nobility Mummies
Genes 2017, 8(11), 310; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes8110310
Received: 30 August 2017 / Revised: 20 October 2017 / Accepted: 25 October 2017 / Published: 7 November 2017
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Abstract
Little is still known about the microbiome resulting from the process of mummification of the human gut. In the present study, the gut microbiota, genes associated with metabolism, and putative resistome of Inca and Italian nobility mummies were characterized by using high-throughput sequencing.
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Little is still known about the microbiome resulting from the process of mummification of the human gut. In the present study, the gut microbiota, genes associated with metabolism, and putative resistome of Inca and Italian nobility mummies were characterized by using high-throughput sequencing. The Italian nobility mummies exhibited a higher bacterial diversity as compared to the Inca mummies when using 16S ribosomal (rRNA) gene amplicon sequencing, but both groups showed bacterial and fungal taxa when using shotgun metagenomic sequencing that may resemble both the thanatomicrobiome and extant human gut microbiomes. Identification of sequences associated with plants, animals, and carbohydrate-active enzymes (CAZymes) may provide further insights into the dietary habits of Inca and Italian nobility mummies. Putative antibiotic-resistance genes in the Inca and Italian nobility mummies support a human gut resistome prior to the antibiotic therapy era. The higher proportion of putative antibiotic-resistance genes in the Inca compared to Italian nobility mummies may support the hypotheses that a greater exposure to the environment may result in a greater acquisition of antibiotic-resistance genes. The present study adds knowledge of the microbiome resulting from the process of mummification of the human gut, insights of ancient dietary habits, and the preserved putative human gut resistome prior the antibiotic therapy era. Full article
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