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Genes, Volume 9, Issue 3 (March 2018)

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Cover Story (view full-size image) When Egyptologists at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, could not figure out the sex of a mummified [...] Read more.
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Open AccessArticle Comparative Analysis of Surface Layer Glycoproteins and Genes Involved in Protein Glycosylation in the Genus Haloferax
Received: 29 January 2018 / Revised: 1 March 2018 / Accepted: 9 March 2018 / Published: 20 March 2018
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Abstract
Within the Haloferax genus, both the surface (S)-layer protein, and the glycans that can decorate it, vary between species, which can potentially result in many different surface types, analogous to bacterial serotypes. This variation may mediate phenotypes, such as sensitivity to different viruses
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Within the Haloferax genus, both the surface (S)-layer protein, and the glycans that can decorate it, vary between species, which can potentially result in many different surface types, analogous to bacterial serotypes. This variation may mediate phenotypes, such as sensitivity to different viruses and mating preferences. Here, we describe S-layer glycoproteins found in multiple Haloferax strains and perform comparative genomics analyses of major and alternative glycosylation clusters of isolates from two coastal sites. We analyze the phylogeny of individual glycosylation genes and demonstrate that while the major glycosylation cluster tends to be conserved among closely related strains, the alternative cluster is highly variable. Thus, geographically- and genetically-related strains may exhibit diverse surface structures to such an extent that no two isolates present an identical surface profile. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Genetics and Genomics of Extremophiles)
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Open AccessArticle Genomic Characterization of Listeria monocytogenes Isolates Associated with Clinical Listeriosis and the Food Production Environment in Ireland
Received: 21 December 2017 / Revised: 5 March 2018 / Accepted: 7 March 2018 / Published: 20 March 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (2153 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Listeria monocytogenes is a major human foodborne pathogen that is prevalent in the natural environment and has a high case fatality rate. Whole genome sequencing (WGS) analysis has emerged as a valuable methodology for the classification of L. monocytogenes isolates and the identification
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Listeria monocytogenes is a major human foodborne pathogen that is prevalent in the natural environment and has a high case fatality rate. Whole genome sequencing (WGS) analysis has emerged as a valuable methodology for the classification of L. monocytogenes isolates and the identification of virulence islands that may influence infectivity. In this study, WGS was used to provide an insight into 25 L. monocytogenes isolates from cases of clinical infection in Ireland between 2013 and 2015. Clinical strains were either lineage I (14 isolates) or lineage II (11 isolates), with 12 clonal complexes (CC) represented, of which CC1 (6) and CC101 (4) were the most common. Single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) analysis demonstrated that clinical isolates from mother–infant pairs (one isolate from the mother and one from the infant) were highly related (3 SNP differences in each) and also identified close similarities between isolates from otherwise distinct cases (1 SNP difference). Clinical strains were positive for common virulence-associated loci and 13 isolates harbour the LIPI-3 locus. Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) was used to compare strains to a database of 1300 Irish food and food processing environment isolates and determined that 64% of clinical pulsotypes were previously encountered in the food or food processing environment. Five of the matching food and food processing environment isolates were sequenced and results demonstrated a correlation between pulsotype and genotype. Overall, the work provides insights into the nature of L. monocytogenes strains currently causing clinical disease in Ireland and indicates that similar isolates can be found in the food or food processing environment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Genetics and Genomics of Foodborne Pathogens)
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Open AccessArticle Long Non-Coding RNAs Responsive to Salt and Boron Stress in the Hyper-Arid Lluteño Maize from Atacama Desert
Received: 3 January 2018 / Revised: 2 March 2018 / Accepted: 8 March 2018 / Published: 20 March 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (3561 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) have been defined as transcripts longer than 200 nucleotides, which lack significant protein coding potential and possess critical roles in diverse cellular processes. Long non-coding RNAs have recently been functionally characterized in plant stress–response mechanisms. In the present study,
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Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) have been defined as transcripts longer than 200 nucleotides, which lack significant protein coding potential and possess critical roles in diverse cellular processes. Long non-coding RNAs have recently been functionally characterized in plant stress–response mechanisms. In the present study, we perform a comprehensive identification of lncRNAs in response to combined stress induced by salinity and excess of boron in the Lluteño maize, a tolerant maize landrace from Atacama Desert, Chile. We use deep RNA sequencing to identify a set of 48,345 different lncRNAs, of which 28,012 (58.1%) are conserved with other maize (B73, Mo17 or Palomero), with the remaining 41.9% belonging to potentially Lluteño exclusive lncRNA transcripts. According to B73 maize reference genome sequence, most Lluteño lncRNAs correspond to intergenic transcripts. Interestingly, Lluteño lncRNAs presents an unusual overall higher expression compared to protein coding genes under exposure to stressed conditions. In total, we identified 1710 putatively responsive to the combined stressed conditions of salt and boron exposure. We also identified a set of 848 stress responsive potential trans natural antisense transcripts (trans-NAT) lncRNAs, which seems to be regulating genes associated with regulation of transcription, response to stress, response to abiotic stimulus and participating of the nicotianamine metabolic process. Reverse transcription-quantitative PCR (RT-qPCR) experiments were performed in a subset of lncRNAs, validating their existence and expression patterns. Our results suggest that a diverse set of maize lncRNAs from leaves and roots is responsive to combined salt and boron stress, being the first effort to identify lncRNAs from a maize landrace adapted to extreme conditions such as the Atacama Desert. The information generated is a starting point to understand the genomic adaptabilities suffered by this maize to surpass this extremely stressed environment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Plant Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessArticle Yak IGF2 Promotes Fibroblast Proliferation Via Suppression of IGF1R and PI3KCG Expression
Received: 30 January 2018 / Revised: 3 March 2018 / Accepted: 12 March 2018 / Published: 20 March 2018
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Abstract
Insulin-like growth factor 2 (IGF2) recapitulates many of the activities of insulin and promotes differentiation of myoblasts and osteoblasts, which likely contribute to genetic variations of growth potential. However, little is known about the functions and signaling properties of IGF2 variants in yaks.
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Insulin-like growth factor 2 (IGF2) recapitulates many of the activities of insulin and promotes differentiation of myoblasts and osteoblasts, which likely contribute to genetic variations of growth potential. However, little is known about the functions and signaling properties of IGF2 variants in yaks. The over-expression vector and knockdown sequence of yak IGF2 were transfected into yak fibroblasts, and the effects were detected by a series of assays. IGF2 expression in yak muscle tissues was significantly lower than that of other tissues. In yak fibroblasts, the up-regulated expression of IGF2 inhibits expression of IGF1 and insulin-like growth factor 2 receptor (IGF2R) and significantly up-regulates expression of IGF1R. Inhibition of IGF2 expression caused the up-regulates expression of IGF1, IGF1R and IGF2R. Both over-expression and knockdown of IGF2 resulted in up-regulation of threonine protein kinase 1 (Akt1) expression and down-regulation of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase, catalytic subunit gamma (PIK3CG). Cell cycle and cell proliferation assays revealed that over-expression of IGF2 enhanced the DNA synthesis phase and promoted yak fibroblasts proliferation. Conversely, knockdown of IGF2 decreased DNA synthesis and inhibited proliferation. These results suggested that IGF2 was negatively correlated with IGF1R and PIK3CG and demonstrated an association with the IGFs-PI3K-Akt (IGFs-phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase- threonine protein kinase) pathway in cell proliferation and provided evidence supporting the functional role of IGF2 for use in improving the production performance of yaks. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessArticle Genome-Wide Identification and Expression Profiling of Cytokinin Oxidase/Dehydrogenase (CKX) Genes Reveal Likely Roles in Pod Development and Stress Responses in Oilseed Rape (Brassica napus L.)
Received: 7 February 2018 / Revised: 10 March 2018 / Accepted: 12 March 2018 / Published: 16 March 2018
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Abstract
Cytokinin oxidase/dehydrogenases (CKXs) play a critical role in the irreversible degradation of cytokinins, thereby regulating plant growth and development. Brassica napus is one of the most widely cultivated oilseed crops worldwide. With the completion of whole-genome sequencing of B. napus, genome-wide identification
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Cytokinin oxidase/dehydrogenases (CKXs) play a critical role in the irreversible degradation of cytokinins, thereby regulating plant growth and development. Brassica napus is one of the most widely cultivated oilseed crops worldwide. With the completion of whole-genome sequencing of B. napus, genome-wide identification and expression analysis of the BnCKX gene family has become technically feasible. In this study, we identified 23 BnCKX genes and analyzed their phylogenetic relationships, gene structures, conserved motifs, protein subcellular localizations, and other properties. We also analyzed the expression of the 23 BnCKX genes in the B. napus cultivar Zhong Shuang 11 (‘ZS11’) by quantitative reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR), revealing their diverse expression patterns. We selected four BnCKX genes based on the results of RNA-sequencing and qRT-PCR and compared their expression in cultivated varieties with extremely long versus short siliques. The expression levels of BnCKX5-1, 5-2, 6-1, and 7-1 significantly differed between the two lines and changed during pod development, suggesting they might play roles in determining silique length and in pod development. Finally, we investigated the effects of treatment with the synthetic cytokinin 6-benzylaminopurine (6-BA) and the auxin indole-3-acetic acid (IAA) on the expression of the four selected BnCKX genes. Our results suggest that regulating BnCKX expression is a promising way to enhance the harvest index and stress resistance in plants. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Plant Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessReview Dietary Alteration of the Gut Microbiome and Its Impact on Weight and Fat Mass: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
Received: 5 December 2017 / Revised: 7 March 2018 / Accepted: 7 March 2018 / Published: 16 March 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (4322 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Dietary alteration of the gut microbiome is an important target in the treatment of obesity. Animal and human studies have shown bidirectional weight modulation based on the probiotic formulation used. In this study, we systematically reviewed the literature and performed a meta-analysis to
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Dietary alteration of the gut microbiome is an important target in the treatment of obesity. Animal and human studies have shown bidirectional weight modulation based on the probiotic formulation used. In this study, we systematically reviewed the literature and performed a meta-analysis to assess the impact of prebiotics, probiotics and synbiotics on body weight, body mass index (BMI) and fat mass in adult human subjects. We searched Medline (PubMed), Embase, the Cochrane Library and the Web of Science to identify 4721 articles, of which 41 were subjected to full-text screening, yielding 21 included studies with 33 study arms. Probiotic use was associated with significant decreases in BMI, weight and fat mass. Studies of subjects consuming prebiotics demonstrated a significant reduction in body weight, whereas synbiotics did not show an effect. Overall, when the utilization of gut microbiome-modulating dietary agents (prebiotic/probiotic/synbiotic) was compared to placebo, there were significant decreases in BMI, weight and fat mass. In summary, dietary agents for the modulation of the gut microbiome are essential tools in the treatment of obesity and can lead to significant decreases in BMI, weight and fat mass. Further studies are needed to identify the ideal dose and duration of supplementation and to assess the durability of this effect. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diabetes, Obesity and the Gut Microbiome)
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Open AccessArticle Evolutionary Mechanisms of Varying Chromosome Numbers in the Radiation of Erebia Butterflies
Received: 31 December 2017 / Revised: 14 March 2018 / Accepted: 14 March 2018 / Published: 16 March 2018
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Abstract
The evolution of intrinsic barriers to gene flow is a crucial step in the process of speciation. Chromosomal changes caused by fusion and fission events are one such barrier and are common in several groups of Lepidoptera. However, it remains unclear if and
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The evolution of intrinsic barriers to gene flow is a crucial step in the process of speciation. Chromosomal changes caused by fusion and fission events are one such barrier and are common in several groups of Lepidoptera. However, it remains unclear if and how chromosomal changes have contributed to speciation in this group. I tested for a phylogenetic signal of varying chromosome numbers in Erebia butterflies by combining existing sequence data with karyological information. I also compared different models of trait evolution in order to infer the underlying evolutionary mechanisms. Overall, I found significant phylogenetic signals that are consistent with non-neutral trait evolution only when parts of the mitochondrial genome were included, suggesting cytonuclear discordances. The adaptive evolutionary model tested in this study consistently outperformed the neutral model of trait evolution. Taken together, these results suggest that, unlike other Lepidoptera groups, changes in chromosome numbers may have played a role in the diversification of Erebia butterflies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Evolutionary Genetics of Reproductive Isolation)
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Open AccessReview Targeting Mitochondria to Counteract Age-Related Cellular Dysfunction
Received: 10 January 2018 / Revised: 2 March 2018 / Accepted: 15 March 2018 / Published: 16 March 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (615 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Senescence is related to the loss of cellular homeostasis and functions, which leads to a progressive decline in physiological ability and to aging-associated diseases. Since mitochondria are essential to energy supply, cell differentiation, cell cycle control, intracellular signaling and Ca2+ sequestration, fine-tuning
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Senescence is related to the loss of cellular homeostasis and functions, which leads to a progressive decline in physiological ability and to aging-associated diseases. Since mitochondria are essential to energy supply, cell differentiation, cell cycle control, intracellular signaling and Ca2+ sequestration, fine-tuning mitochondrial activity appropriately, is a tightrope walk during aging. For instance, the mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) ensures a supply of adenosine triphosphate (ATP), but is also the main source of potentially harmful levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS). Moreover, mitochondrial function is strongly linked to mitochondrial Ca2+ homeostasis and mitochondrial shape, which undergo various alterations during aging. Since mitochondria play such a critical role in an organism’s process of aging, they also offer promising targets for manipulation of senescent cellular functions. Accordingly, interventions delaying the onset of age-associated disorders involve the manipulation of mitochondrial function, including caloric restriction (CR) or exercise, as well as drugs, such as metformin, aspirin, and polyphenols. In this review, we discuss mitochondria’s role in and impact on cellular aging and their potential to serve as a target for therapeutic interventions against age-related cellular dysfunction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mitochondria and Aging)
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Open AccessArticle Distinct Roles of Velvet Complex in the Development, Stress Tolerance, and Secondary Metabolism in Pestalotiopsis microspora, a Taxol Producer
Received: 28 January 2018 / Revised: 7 March 2018 / Accepted: 8 March 2018 / Published: 14 March 2018
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Abstract
The velvet family proteins have been shown to play critical roles in fungal secondary metabolism and development. However, variations of the roles have been observed in different fungi. We report here the observation on the role of three velvet complex components VeA, VelB,
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The velvet family proteins have been shown to play critical roles in fungal secondary metabolism and development. However, variations of the roles have been observed in different fungi. We report here the observation on the role of three velvet complex components VeA, VelB, and LaeA in Pestalotiopsis microspora, a formerly reported taxol-producing fungus. Deletion of individual members led to the retardation of vegetative growth and sporulation and pigmentation, suggesting critical roles in these processes. The mutant strain △velB appeared hypersensitive to osmotic stress and the dye Congo red, whereas △veA and △laeA were little affected by the pressures, suggesting only velB was required for the integrity of the cell wall. Importantly, we found that the genes played distinct roles in the biosynthesis of secondary metabolites in P. microspora. For instance, the production of pestalotiollide B, a previously characterized polyketide, required velB and laeA. In contrast, the veA gene appeared to inhibit the pestalotiollide B (PB) role in its biosynthesis. This study suggests that the three components of the velvet complex are important global regulators, but with distinct roles in hyphal growth, asexual production, and secondary metabolism in P. microspora. This work provides information for further understanding the biosynthesis of secondary metabolism in the fungus. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Microbial Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessReview Phylogeny and Phylogeography of Rhizobial Symbionts Nodulating Legumes of the Tribe Genisteae
Received: 31 January 2018 / Revised: 2 March 2018 / Accepted: 5 March 2018 / Published: 14 March 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (1567 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
The legume tribe Genisteae comprises 618, predominantly temperate species, showing an amphi-Atlantic distribution that was caused by several long-distance dispersal events. Seven out of the 16 authenticated rhizobial genera can nodulate particular Genisteae species. Bradyrhizobium predominates among rhizobia nodulating Genisteae legumes. Bradyrhizobium strains
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The legume tribe Genisteae comprises 618, predominantly temperate species, showing an amphi-Atlantic distribution that was caused by several long-distance dispersal events. Seven out of the 16 authenticated rhizobial genera can nodulate particular Genisteae species. Bradyrhizobium predominates among rhizobia nodulating Genisteae legumes. Bradyrhizobium strains that infect Genisteae species belong to both the Bradyrhizobium japonicum and Bradyrhizobium elkanii superclades. In symbiotic gene phylogenies, Genisteae bradyrhizobia are scattered among several distinct clades, comprising strains that originate from phylogenetically distant legumes. This indicates that the capacity for nodulation of Genisteae spp. has evolved independently in various symbiotic gene clades, and that it has not been a long-multi-step process. The exception is Bradyrhizobium Clade II, which unlike other clades comprises strains that are specialized in nodulation of Genisteae, but also Loteae spp. Presumably, Clade II represents an example of long-lasting co-evolution of bradyrhizobial symbionts with their legume hosts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Genetics and Genomics of the Rhizobium-Legume Symbiosis)
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Open AccessArticle VdPLP, A Patatin-Like Phospholipase in Verticillium dahliae, Is Involved in Cell Wall Integrity and Required for Pathogenicity
Received: 31 January 2018 / Revised: 4 March 2018 / Accepted: 7 March 2018 / Published: 13 March 2018
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Abstract
The soil-borne ascomycete fungus Verticillium dahliae causes vascular wilt disease and can seriously diminish the yield and quality of important crops. Functional analysis of growth- and pathogenicity-related genes is essential for revealing the pathogenic molecular mechanism of V. dahliae. Phospholipase is an
[...] Read more.
The soil-borne ascomycete fungus Verticillium dahliae causes vascular wilt disease and can seriously diminish the yield and quality of important crops. Functional analysis of growth- and pathogenicity-related genes is essential for revealing the pathogenic molecular mechanism of V. dahliae. Phospholipase is an important virulence factor in fungi that hydrolyzes phospholipids into fatty acid and other lipophilic substances and is involved in hyphal development. Thus far, only a few V. dahliae phospholipases have been identified, and their involvement in V. dahliae development and pathogenicity remains unknown. In this study, the function of the patatin-like phospholipase gene in V. dahliae (VdPLP, VDAG_00942) is characterized by generating gene knockout and complementary mutants. Vegetative growth and conidiation of VdPLP deletion mutants (ΔVdPLP) were significantly reduced compared with wild type and complementary strains, but more microsclerotia formed. The ΔVdPLP mutants were very sensitive to the cell-wall-perturbing agents: calcofluor white (CFW) and Congo red (CR). The transcriptional level of genes related to the cell wall integrity (CWI) pathway and chitin synthesis were downregulated, suggesting that VdPLP has a pivotal role in the CWI pathway and chitin synthesis in V. dahliae. ΔVdPLP strains were distinctly impaired in in their virulence and ability to colonize Nicotiana benthamiana roots. Our results demonstrate that VdPLP regulates hyphal growth and conidial production and is involved in stabilizing the cell wall, thus mediating the pathogenicity of V. dahliae. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Microbial Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessReview Alternative Splicing in the Hippo Pathway—Implications for Disease and Potential Therapeutic Targets
Received: 22 January 2018 / Revised: 5 March 2018 / Accepted: 6 March 2018 / Published: 13 March 2018
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Abstract
Alternative splicing is a well-studied gene regulatory mechanism that produces biological diversity by allowing the production of multiple protein isoforms from a single gene. An involvement of alternative splicing in the key biological signalling Hippo pathway is emerging and offers new therapeutic avenues.
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Alternative splicing is a well-studied gene regulatory mechanism that produces biological diversity by allowing the production of multiple protein isoforms from a single gene. An involvement of alternative splicing in the key biological signalling Hippo pathway is emerging and offers new therapeutic avenues. This review discusses examples of alternative splicing in the Hippo pathway, how deregulation of these processes may contribute to disease and whether these processes offer new potential therapeutic targets. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aberrant Pre-mRNA Splicing in Disease)
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Open AccessArticle Caenorhabditis elegans BRICHOS Domain–Containing Protein C09F5.1 Maintains Thermotolerance and Decreases Cytotoxicity of Aβ42 by Activating the UPR
Received: 11 December 2017 / Revised: 5 March 2018 / Accepted: 9 March 2018 / Published: 13 March 2018
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Abstract
Caenorhabditis elegans C09F5.1 is a nematode-specific gene that encodes a type II transmembrane protein containing the BRICHOS domain. The gene was isolated as a heat-sensitive mutant, but the function of the protein remained unclear. We examined the expression pattern and subcellular localization of
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Caenorhabditis elegans C09F5.1 is a nematode-specific gene that encodes a type II transmembrane protein containing the BRICHOS domain. The gene was isolated as a heat-sensitive mutant, but the function of the protein remained unclear. We examined the expression pattern and subcellular localization of C09F5.1 as well as its roles in thermotolerance and chaperone function. Expression of C09F5.1 under heat shock conditions was induced in a heat shock factor 1 (HSF-1)–dependent manner. However, under normal growth conditions, most cells types exposed to mechanical stimuli expressed C09F5.1. Knockdown of C09F5.1 expression or deletion of the N-terminal domain decreased thermotolerance. The BRICHOS domain of C09F5.1 did not exhibit chaperone function unlike those of other proteins containing this domain, but the domain was essential for the proper subcellular localization of the protein. Intact C09F5.1 was localized to the Golgi body, but the N-terminal domain of C09F5.1 (C09F5.1-NTD) was retained in the ER. C09F5.1-NTD delayed paralysis by beta-amyloid (1-42) protein (Aβ42) in Alzheimer’s disease model worms (CL4176) and activated the unfolded protein response (UPR) by interacting with Aβ42. An intrinsically disordered region (IDR) located at the N-terminus of C09F5.1 may be responsible for the chaperone function of C09F5.1-NTD. Taken together, the data suggest that C09F5.1 triggers the UPR by interacting with abnormal proteins. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessReview CD99: A Cell Surface Protein with an Oncojanus Role in Tumors
Received: 25 January 2018 / Revised: 2 March 2018 / Accepted: 2 March 2018 / Published: 13 March 2018
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Abstract
The cell surface molecule CD99 has gained interest because of its involvement in regulating cell differentiation and adhesion/migration of immune and tumor cells. However, the molecule plays an intriguing and dual role in different cell types. In particular, it acts as a requirement
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The cell surface molecule CD99 has gained interest because of its involvement in regulating cell differentiation and adhesion/migration of immune and tumor cells. However, the molecule plays an intriguing and dual role in different cell types. In particular, it acts as a requirement for cell malignancy or as an oncosuppressor in tumors. In addition, the gene encodes for two different isoforms, which also act in opposition inside the same cell. This review highlights key studies focusing on the dual role of CD99 and its isoforms and discusses major critical issues, challenges, and strategies for overcoming those challenges. The review specifically underscores the properties that make the molecule an attractive therapeutic target and identifies new relationships and areas of study that may be exploited. The elucidation of the spatial and temporal control of the expression of CD99 in normal and tumor cells is required to obtain a full appreciation of this molecule and its signaling. Full article
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Open AccessArticle A Novel Hybrid Sequence-Based Model for Identifying Anticancer Peptides
Received: 24 January 2018 / Revised: 14 February 2018 / Accepted: 27 February 2018 / Published: 13 March 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (3848 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Cancer is a serious health issue worldwide. Traditional treatment methods focus on killing cancer cells by using anticancer drugs or radiation therapy, but the cost of these methods is quite high, and in addition there are side effects. With the discovery of anticancer
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Cancer is a serious health issue worldwide. Traditional treatment methods focus on killing cancer cells by using anticancer drugs or radiation therapy, but the cost of these methods is quite high, and in addition there are side effects. With the discovery of anticancer peptides, great progress has been made in cancer treatment. For the purpose of prompting the application of anticancer peptides in cancer treatment, it is necessary to use computational methods to identify anticancer peptides (ACPs). In this paper, we propose a sequence-based model for identifying ACPs (SAP). In our proposed SAP, the peptide is represented by 400D features or 400D features with g-gap dipeptide features, and then the unrelated features are pruned using the maximum relevance-maximum distance method. The experimental results demonstrate that our model performs better than some existing methods. Furthermore, our model has also been extended to other classifiers, and the performance is stable compared with some state-of-the-art works. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Testing of Alignment Parameters for Ancient Samples: Evaluating and Optimizing Mapping Parameters for Ancient Samples Using the TAPAS Tool
Received: 20 December 2017 / Revised: 6 March 2018 / Accepted: 8 March 2018 / Published: 13 March 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (1850 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
High-throughput sequence data retrieved from ancient or other degraded samples has led to unprecedented insights into the evolutionary history of many species, but the analysis of such sequences also poses specific computational challenges. The most commonly used approach involves mapping sequence reads to
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High-throughput sequence data retrieved from ancient or other degraded samples has led to unprecedented insights into the evolutionary history of many species, but the analysis of such sequences also poses specific computational challenges. The most commonly used approach involves mapping sequence reads to a reference genome. However, this process becomes increasingly challenging with an elevated genetic distance between target and reference or with the presence of contaminant sequences with high sequence similarity to the target species. The evaluation and testing of mapping efficiency and stringency are thus paramount for the reliable identification and analysis of ancient sequences. In this paper, we present ‘TAPAS’, (Testing of Alignment Parameters for Ancient Samples), a computational tool that enables the systematic testing of mapping tools for ancient data by simulating sequence data reflecting the properties of an ancient dataset and performing test runs using the mapping software and parameter settings of interest. We showcase TAPAS by using it to assess and improve mapping strategy for a degraded sample from a banded linsang (Prionodon linsang), for which no closely related reference is currently available. This enables a 1.8-fold increase of the number of mapped reads without sacrificing mapping specificity. The increase of mapped reads effectively reduces the need for additional sequencing, thus making more economical use of time, resources, and sample material. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Novel and Neglected Areas of Ancient DNA Research)
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Open AccessArticle Genome-Wide Analysis of the PYL Gene Family and Identification of PYL Genes That Respond to Abiotic Stress in Brassica napus
Received: 15 January 2018 / Revised: 26 February 2018 / Accepted: 6 March 2018 / Published: 12 March 2018
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (7334 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Abscisic acid (ABA) is an endogenous phytohormone that plays important roles in the regulation of plant growth, development, and stress responses. The pyrabactin resistance 1-like (PYR/PYL) protein is a core regulatory component of ABA signaling networks in plants. However, no details regarding this
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Abscisic acid (ABA) is an endogenous phytohormone that plays important roles in the regulation of plant growth, development, and stress responses. The pyrabactin resistance 1-like (PYR/PYL) protein is a core regulatory component of ABA signaling networks in plants. However, no details regarding this family in Brassica napus are available. Here, 46 PYLs were identified in the B. napus genome. Based on phylogenetic analysis, BnPYR1 and BnPYL1-3 belong to subfamily I, BnPYL7-10 belong to subfamily II, and BnPYL4-6 and BnPYL11-13 belong to subfamily III. Analysis of BnPYL conserved motifs showed that every subfamily contained four common motifs. By predicting cis-elements in the promoters, we found that all BnPYL members contained hormone- and stress-related elements and that expression levels of most BnPYLs were relatively higher in seeds at the germination stage than those in other organs or at other developmental stages. Gene Ontology (GO) enrichment showed that BnPYL genes mainly participate in responses to stimuli. To identify crucial PYLs mediating the response to abiotic stress in B. napus, expression changes in 14 BnPYL genes were determined by quantitative real-time RT-PCR after drought, heat, and salinity treatments, and identified BnPYR1-3, BnPYL1-2, and BnPYL7-2 in respond to abiotic stresses. The findings of this study lay a foundation for further investigations of PYL genes in B. napus. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Estimating Phylogenies from Large Genomic Datasets)
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Open AccessArticle Identification of Differentially Expressed Genes between Original Breast Cancer and Xenograft Using Machine Learning Algorithms
Received: 3 January 2018 / Revised: 3 March 2018 / Accepted: 6 March 2018 / Published: 12 March 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (1096 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Breast cancer is one of the most common malignancies in women. Patient-derived tumor xenograft (PDX) model is a cutting-edge approach for drug research on breast cancer. However, PDX still exhibits differences from original human tumors, thereby challenging the molecular understanding of tumorigenesis. In
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Breast cancer is one of the most common malignancies in women. Patient-derived tumor xenograft (PDX) model is a cutting-edge approach for drug research on breast cancer. However, PDX still exhibits differences from original human tumors, thereby challenging the molecular understanding of tumorigenesis. In particular, gene expression changes after tissues are transplanted from human to mouse model. In this study, we propose a novel computational method by incorporating several machine learning algorithms, including Monte Carlo feature selection (MCFS), random forest (RF), and rough set-based rule learning, to identify genes with significant expression differences between PDX and original human tumors. First, 831 breast tumors, including 657 PDX and 174 human tumors, were collected. Based on MCFS and RF, 32 genes were then identified to be informative for the prediction of PDX and human tumors and can be used to construct a prediction model. The prediction model exhibits a Matthews coefficient correlation value of 0.777. Seven interpretable interactions within the informative gene were detected based on the rough set-based rule learning. Furthermore, the seven interpretable interactions can be well supported by previous experimental studies. Our study not only presents a method for identifying informative genes with differential expression but also provides insights into the mechanism through which gene expression changes after being transplanted from human tumor into mouse model. This work would be helpful for research and drug development for breast cancer. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Technologies and Resources for Genetics)
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Open AccessArticle Genome-Wide Transcriptome Analysis Reveals the Comprehensive Response of Two Susceptible Poplar Sections to Marssonina brunnea Infection
Received: 22 January 2018 / Revised: 27 February 2018 / Accepted: 1 March 2018 / Published: 12 March 2018
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Abstract
Marssonina leaf spot disease of poplar (MLDP), caused by the hemibiotrophic pathogen Marssonina brunnea, frequently results in damage to many poplar species. In nature, two formae speciales of M. brunnea exist that are susceptible to different poplar subgenera. Marssonina brunnea f. sp.
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Marssonina leaf spot disease of poplar (MLDP), caused by the hemibiotrophic pathogen Marssonina brunnea, frequently results in damage to many poplar species. In nature, two formae speciales of M. brunnea exist that are susceptible to different poplar subgenera. Marssonina brunnea f. sp. monogermtubi infects poplar hosts from Populus sect. Aigeiros (Aig), while M. brunnea f. sp. multigermtubi always infects poplar hosts from Populus sect. Leuce Duby (Leu). Based on the fungal penetration structures, a comprehensive transcriptomic approach was used to investigate the gene expression patterns of these two poplar subgenera at three crucial infection stages. MLDP significantly altered the expression patterns of many genes involved in mitogen activated protein kinase (MAPKs) and calcium signaling, transcription factors, primary and secondary metabolism, and other processes in both poplar subgenera. However, major differences in gene expression were also observed between the two poplar subgenera. Aig was most responsive at the initial infection stage, while Leu largely interacted with M. brunnea at the necrotrophic phase. Furthermore, the differentially expressed genes (DEGs) involved in pathways related to biotic stress also differed substantially between the two poplar subgenera. Further analysis indicated that the genes involved in cell wall metabolism and phenylpropanoid metabolism were differentially expressed in the progression of the disease. By examining the expression patterns of genes related to the defense against disease, we found that several genes annotated with causing hypersensitive cell death were upregulated at the necrotrophic phase of MLDP, inferring that plant immune response potentially happened at this infection stage. The present research elucidated the potential molecular differences between the two susceptible interaction systems in MLDP and provided novel insight into the temporal regulation of genes during the susceptible response. To the best of our knowledge, this study also constitutes the first to reveal the molecular mechanisms of poplar in response to the transition of hemibiotrophic fungal pathogens from the biotrophic phase to the necrotrophic phase. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Plant Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessArticle Dating Pupae of the Blow Fly Calliphora vicina Robineau–Desvoidy 1830 (Diptera: Calliphoridae) for Post Mortem Interval—Estimation: Validation of Molecular Age Markers
Received: 31 December 2017 / Revised: 4 March 2018 / Accepted: 5 March 2018 / Published: 9 March 2018
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Abstract
Determining the age of juvenile blow flies is one of the key tasks of forensic entomology when providing evidence for the minimum post mortem interval. While the age determination of blow fly larvae is well established using morphological parameters, the current study focuses
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Determining the age of juvenile blow flies is one of the key tasks of forensic entomology when providing evidence for the minimum post mortem interval. While the age determination of blow fly larvae is well established using morphological parameters, the current study focuses on molecular methods for estimating the age of blow flies during the metamorphosis in the pupal stage, which lasts about half the total juvenile development. It has already been demonstrated in several studies that the intraspecific variance in expression of so far used genes in blow flies is often too high to assign a certain expression level to a distinct age, leading to an inaccurate prediction. To overcome this problem, we previously identified new markers, which show a very sharp age dependent expression course during pupal development of the forensically-important blow fly Calliphora vicina Robineau–Desvoidy 1830 (Diptera: Calliphoridae) by analyzing massive parallel sequencing (MPS) generated transcriptome data. We initially designed and validated two quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) assays for each of 15 defined pupal ages representing a daily progress during the total pupal development if grown at 17 °C. We also investigated whether the performance of these assays is affected by the ambient temperature, when rearing pupae of C. vicina at three different constant temperatures—namely 17 °C, 20 °C and 25 °C. A temperature dependency of the performance could not be observed, except for one marker. Hence, for each of the defined development landmarks, we can present gene expression profiles of one to two markers defining the mentioned progress in development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Forensic Genomics)
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Open AccessArticle Metagenomic Insights into the Phylogenetic and Metabolic Diversity of the Prokaryotic Community Dwelling in Hypersaline Soils from the Odiel Saltmarshes (SW Spain)
Received: 1 February 2018 / Revised: 19 February 2018 / Accepted: 27 February 2018 / Published: 8 March 2018
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Abstract
Hypersaline environments encompass aquatic and terrestrial habitats. While only a limited number of studies on the microbial diversity of saline soils have been carried out, hypersaline lakes and marine salterns have been thoroughly investigated, resulting in an aquatic-biased knowledge about life in hypersaline
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Hypersaline environments encompass aquatic and terrestrial habitats. While only a limited number of studies on the microbial diversity of saline soils have been carried out, hypersaline lakes and marine salterns have been thoroughly investigated, resulting in an aquatic-biased knowledge about life in hypersaline environments. To improve our understanding of the assemblage of microbes thriving in saline soils, we assessed the phylogenetic diversity and metabolic potential of the prokaryotic community of two hypersaline soils (with electrical conductivities of ~24 and 55 dS/m) from the Odiel saltmarshes (Spain) by metagenomics. Comparative analysis of these soil databases with available datasets from salterns ponds allowed further identification of unique and shared traits of microbial communities dwelling in these habitats. Saline soils harbored a more diverse prokaryotic community and, in contrast to their aquatic counterparts, contained sequences related to both known halophiles and groups without known halophilic or halotolerant representatives, which reflects the physical heterogeneity of the soil matrix. Our results suggest that Haloquadratum and certain Balneolaeota members may preferentially thrive in aquatic or terrestrial habitats, respectively, while haloarchaea, nanohaloarchaea and Salinibacter may be similarly adapted to both environments. We reconstructed 4 draft genomes related to Bacteroidetes, Balneolaeota and Halobacteria and appraised their metabolism, osmoadaptation strategies and ecology. This study greatly improves the current understanding of saline soils microbiota. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Genetics and Genomics of Extremophiles)
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Open AccessArticle Analysis of Gene Regulatory Networks of Maize in Response to Nitrogen
Received: 12 December 2017 / Revised: 26 February 2018 / Accepted: 28 February 2018 / Published: 8 March 2018
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Abstract
Nitrogen (N) fertilizer has a major influence on the yield and quality. Understanding and optimising the response of crop plants to nitrogen fertilizer usage is of central importance in enhancing food security and agricultural sustainability. In this study, the analysis of gene regulatory
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Nitrogen (N) fertilizer has a major influence on the yield and quality. Understanding and optimising the response of crop plants to nitrogen fertilizer usage is of central importance in enhancing food security and agricultural sustainability. In this study, the analysis of gene regulatory networks reveals multiple genes and biological processes in response to N. Two microarray studies have been used to infer components of the nitrogen-response network. Since they used different array technologies, a map linking the two probe sets to the maize B73 reference genome has been generated to allow comparison. Putative Arabidopsis homologues of maize genes were used to query the Biological General Repository for Interaction Datasets (BioGRID) network, which yielded the potential involvement of three transcription factors (TFs) (GLK5, MADS64 and bZIP108) and a Calcium-dependent protein kinase. An Artificial Neural Network was used to identify influential genes and retrieved bZIP108 and WRKY36 as significant TFs in both microarray studies, along with genes for Asparagine Synthetase, a dual-specific protein kinase and a protein phosphatase. The output from one study also suggested roles for microRNA (miRNA) 399b and Nin-like Protein 15 (NLP15). Co-expression-network analysis of TFs with closely related profiles to known Nitrate-responsive genes identified GLK5, GLK8 and NLP15 as candidate regulators of genes repressed under low Nitrogen conditions, while bZIP108 might play a role in gene activation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Plant Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessArticle Karyotype Variability and Inter-Population Genomic Differences in Freshwater Ostracods (Crustacea) Showing Geographical Parthenogenesis
Received: 1 December 2017 / Revised: 11 February 2018 / Accepted: 14 February 2018 / Published: 8 March 2018
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Abstract
Transitions from sexual to asexual reproduction are often associated with polyploidy and increased chromosomal plasticity in asexuals. We investigated chromosomes in the freshwater ostracod species Eucypris virens (Jurine, 1820), where sexual, asexual and mixed populations can be found. Our initial karyotyping of multiple
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Transitions from sexual to asexual reproduction are often associated with polyploidy and increased chromosomal plasticity in asexuals. We investigated chromosomes in the freshwater ostracod species Eucypris virens (Jurine, 1820), where sexual, asexual and mixed populations can be found. Our initial karyotyping of multiple populations from Europe and North Africa, both sexual and asexual, revealed a striking variability in chromosome numbers. This would suggest that chromosomal changes are likely to be accelerated in asexuals because the constraints of meiosis are removed. Hence, we employed comparative genomic hybridization (CGH) within and among sexual and asexual populations to get insights into E. virens genome arrangements. CGH disclosed substantial genomic imbalances among the populations analyzed, and three patterns of genome arrangement between these populations: 1. Only putative ribosomal DNA (rDNA)-bearing regions were conserved in the two populations compared indicating a high sequence divergence between these populations. This pattern is comparable with our findings at the interspecies level of comparison; 2. Chromosomal regions were shared by both populations to a varying extent with a distinct copy number variation in pericentromeric and presumable rDNA-bearing regions. This indicates a different rate of evolution in repetitive sequences; 3. A mosaic pattern of distribution of genomic material that can be explained as non-reciprocal genetic introgression and evidence of a hybrid origin of these individuals. We show an overall increased chromosomal dynamics in E. virens that is complementary with available phylogenetic and population genetic data reporting highly differentiated diploid sexual and asexual lineages with a wide variety of genetic backgrounds. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chromosomal Evolution)
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Open AccessArticle Novel Sequence Features of DNA Repair Genes/Proteins from Deinococcus Species Implicated in Protection from Oxidatively Generated Damage
Received: 1 February 2018 / Revised: 23 February 2018 / Accepted: 27 February 2018 / Published: 8 March 2018
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Abstract
Deinococcus species display a high degree of resistance to radiation and desiccation due to their ability to protect critical proteome from oxidatively generated damage; however, the underlying mechanisms are not understood. Comparative analysis of DNA repair proteins reported here has identified 22 conserved
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Deinococcus species display a high degree of resistance to radiation and desiccation due to their ability to protect critical proteome from oxidatively generated damage; however, the underlying mechanisms are not understood. Comparative analysis of DNA repair proteins reported here has identified 22 conserved signature indels (CSIs) in the proteins UvrA1, UvrC, UvrD, UvsE, MutY, MutM, Nth, RecA, RecD, RecG, RecQ, RecR, RuvC, RadA, PolA, DnaE, LigA, GyrA and GyrB, that are uniquely shared by all/most Deinococcus homologs. Of these CSIs, a 30 amino acid surface-exposed insert in the Deinococcus UvrA1, which distinguishes it from all other UvrA homologs, is of much interest. The uvrA1 gene in Deinococcus also exhibits specific genetic linkage (predicted operonic arrangement) to genes for three other proteins including a novel Deinococcus-specific transmembrane protein (designated dCSP-1) and the proteins DsbA and DsbB, playing central roles in protein disulfide bond formation by oxidation-reduction of CXXC (C represents cysteine, X any other amino acid) motifs. The CXXC motifs provide important targets for oxidation damage and they are present in many DNA repair proteins including five in UvrA, which are part of Zinc-finger elements. A conserved insert specific for Deinococcus is also present in the DsbA protein. Additionally, the uvsE gene in Deinococcus also shows specific linkage to the gene for a membrane-associated protein. To account for these novel observations, a model is proposed where specific interaction of the Deinococcus UvrA1 protein with membrane-bound dCSP-1 enables the UvrA1 to receive electrons from DsbA-DsbB oxido-reductase machinery to ameliorate oxidation damage in the UvrA1 protein. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Genetics and Genomics of Extremophiles)
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Open AccessArticle Transcriptome Profiling Reveals the EanI/R Quorum Sensing Regulon in Pantoea Ananatis LMG 2665T
Received: 30 January 2018 / Revised: 26 February 2018 / Accepted: 1 March 2018 / Published: 7 March 2018
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Abstract
Pantoea ananatis LMG 2665T synthesizes and utilizes acyl homoserine lactones (AHLs) for signalling. The complete set of genes regulated by the EanI/R quorum sensing (QS) system in this strain is still not fully known. In this study, RNA-sequencing (RNA-seq) was used to
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Pantoea ananatis LMG 2665T synthesizes and utilizes acyl homoserine lactones (AHLs) for signalling. The complete set of genes regulated by the EanI/R quorum sensing (QS) system in this strain is still not fully known. In this study, RNA-sequencing (RNA-seq) was used to identify the EanI/R regulon in LMG 2665T. Pairwise comparisons of LMG 2665T in the absence of AHLs (Optical density (OD)600 = 0.2) and in the presence of AHLs (OD600 = 0.5) were performed. Additionally, pairwise comparisons of LMG 2665T and its QS mutant at OD600 = 0.5 were undertaken. In total, 608 genes were differentially expressed between LMG 2665T at OD600 = 0.5 versus the same strain at OD600 = 0.2 and 701 genes were differentially expressed between LMG 2665T versus its QS mutant at OD600 = 0.5. A total of 196 genes were commonly differentially expressed between the two approaches. These constituted approximately 4.5% of the whole transcriptome under the experimental conditions used in this study. The RNA-seq data was validated by reverse transcriptase quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR). Genes found to be regulated by EanI/R QS were those coding for redox sensing, metabolism, flagella formation, flagella dependent motility, cell adhesion, biofilm formation, regulators, transport, chemotaxis, methyl accepting proteins, membrane proteins, cell wall synthesis, stress response and a large number of hypothetical proteins. The results of this study give insight into the genes that are regulated by the EanI/R system in LMG 2665T. Functional characterization of the QS regulated genes in LMG 2665T could assist in the formulation of control strategies for this plant pathogen. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Phenotype- and SSR-Based Estimates of Genetic Variation between and within Two Important Elymus Species in Western and Northern China
Received: 13 December 2017 / Revised: 1 March 2018 / Accepted: 1 March 2018 / Published: 7 March 2018
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Abstract
Elymus nutans and Elymus sibiricus are two important perennial forage grasses of the genus Elymus, widely distributed in high altitude regions of Western and Northern China, especially on the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau. Information on phenotypic and genetic diversity is limited, but necessary for
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Elymus nutans and Elymus sibiricus are two important perennial forage grasses of the genus Elymus, widely distributed in high altitude regions of Western and Northern China, especially on the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau. Information on phenotypic and genetic diversity is limited, but necessary for Elymus germplasm collection, conservation, and utilization. In the present study, the phenotypic and genetic differentiation of 73 accessions of the two species were evaluated using 15 phenotypic traits and 40 expressed sequence tag derived simple sequence repeat markers (EST-SSRs). The results showed that only 7.23% phenotypic differentiation (Pst) existed between the two Elymus species based on fifteen quantitative traits. Principal component analysis (PCA) revealed that leaf traits, spike traits, and some seed traits were dominant factors in phenotypic variation. Moreover, 396 (97.8%) and 331 (87.1%) polymorphic bands were generated from 40 EST-SSR primers, suggesting high levels of genetic diversity for the two species. The highest genetic diversity was found in the Northeastern Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau groups. Clustering analysis based on molecular data showed that most accessions of each Elymus species tended to group together. Similar results were described by principal coordinates analysis (PCoA) and structure analysis. The molecular variance analysis (AMOVA) revealed that 81.47% and 89.32% variation existed within the geographical groups for the two species, respectively. Pearson’s correlation analyses showed a strong positive correlation between Nei’s genetic diversity and annual mean temperature. These results could facilitate Elymus germplasm collection, conservation, and future breeding. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Plant Genetics and Genomics)
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Open AccessCorrection Correction: Almeida-Dalmet, S.; et al. Differential Gene Expression in Response to Salinity and Temperature in a Haloarcula Strain from Great Salt Lake, Utah. Genes 2017, 9, 52
Received: 23 February 2018 / Revised: 2 March 2018 / Accepted: 2 March 2018 / Published: 7 March 2018
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Abstract
The authors wish to make the following changes to their paper [1].[...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Genetics and Genomics of Extremophiles)
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Open AccessCorrection Correction: Littink, K. W.; et al. Autosomal Recessive NRL Mutations in Patients with Enhanced S-Cone Syndrome. Genes 2018, 9, 68
Received: 2 March 2018 / Revised: 5 March 2018 / Accepted: 5 March 2018 / Published: 7 March 2018
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Abstract
The authors wish to make the following correction to this paper [1]. [...] Full article
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Open AccessReview Cell-Free Approaches in Synthetic Biology Utilizing Microfluidics
Received: 30 January 2018 / Revised: 26 February 2018 / Accepted: 28 February 2018 / Published: 6 March 2018
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Abstract
Synthetic biology is a rapidly growing multidisciplinary branch of science which aims to mimic complex biological systems by creating similar forms. Constructing an artificial system requires optimization at the gene and protein levels to allow the formation of entire biological pathways. Advances in
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Synthetic biology is a rapidly growing multidisciplinary branch of science which aims to mimic complex biological systems by creating similar forms. Constructing an artificial system requires optimization at the gene and protein levels to allow the formation of entire biological pathways. Advances in cell-free synthetic biology have helped in discovering new genes, proteins, and pathways bypassing the complexity of the complex pathway interactions in living cells. Furthermore, this method is cost- and time-effective with access to the cellular protein factory without the membrane boundaries. The freedom of design, full automation, and mimicking of in vivo systems reveal advantages of synthetic biology that can improve the molecular understanding of processes, relevant for life science applications. In parallel, in vitro approaches have enhanced our understanding of the living system. This review highlights the recent evolution of cell-free gene design, proteins, and cells integrated with microfluidic platforms as a promising technology, which has allowed for the transformation of the concept of bioprocesses. Although several challenges remain, the manipulation of biological synthetic machinery in microfluidic devices as suitable ‘homes’ for in vitro protein synthesis has been proposed as a pioneering approach for the development of new platforms, relevant in biomedical and diagnostic contexts towards even the sensing and monitoring of environmental issues. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue From the Lab-on-a-Chip to the Organ-on-a-Chip)
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Open AccessArticle Overview of Oxidative Stress Response Genes in Selected Halophilic Fungi
Received: 31 January 2018 / Revised: 22 February 2018 / Accepted: 27 February 2018 / Published: 6 March 2018
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Abstract
Exposure of microorganisms to stress, including to high concentrations of salt, can lead to increased production of reactive oxygen species in the cell. To limit the resulting damage, cells have evolved a variety of antioxidant defenses. The role of these defenses in halotolerance
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Exposure of microorganisms to stress, including to high concentrations of salt, can lead to increased production of reactive oxygen species in the cell. To limit the resulting damage, cells have evolved a variety of antioxidant defenses. The role of these defenses in halotolerance has been proposed before. Whole genome sequencing for some of the most halotolerant and halophilic fungal species has enabled us to investigate the possible links between oxidative and salt stress tolerance on the genomic level. We identified genes involved in oxidative stress response in the halophilic basidiomycete Wallemia ichthyophaga, and halotolerant ascomycetous black yeasts Hortaea werneckii and Aureobasidium pullulans, and compared them to genes from 16 other fungi, both asco- and basidiomycetes. According to our results, W. ichthyophaga can survive salinities detrimental to most other organisms with only a moderate number of oxidative stress response genes. In other investigated species, however, the maximum tolerated salinity correlated with the number of genes encoding three major enzymes of the cellular oxidative stress response: superoxide dismutases, catalases, and peroxiredoxins. This observation supports the hypothetical link between the antioxidant capacity of cells and their halotolerance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Genetics and Genomics of Extremophiles)
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