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Search Results: 1 - 10 of 18099 matches for " Christian Mitri equal contributor "
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Plant Insecticide L-Canavanine Repels Drosophila via the Insect Orphan GPCR DmX
Christian Mitri equal contributor,Laurent Soustelle equal contributor,Bérénice Framery,Jo?l Bockaert,Marie-Laure Parmentier,Yves Grau
PLOS Biology , 2009, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pbio.1000147
Abstract: For all animals, the taste sense is crucial to detect and avoid ingesting toxic molecules. Many toxins are synthesized by plants as a defense mechanism against insect predation. One example of such a natural toxic molecule is l-canavanine, a nonprotein amino acid found in the seeds of many legumes. Whether and how insects are informed that some plants contain l-canavanine remains to be elucidated. In insects, the taste sense relies on gustatory receptors forming the gustatory receptor (Gr) family. Gr proteins display highly divergent sequences, suggesting that they could cover the entire range of tastants. However, one cannot exclude the possibility of evolutionarily independent taste receptors. Here, we show that l-canavanine is not only toxic, but is also a repellent for Drosophila. Using a pharmacogenetic approach, we find that flies sense food containing this poison by the DmX receptor. DmXR is an insect orphan G-protein–coupled receptor that has partially diverged in its ligand binding pocket from the metabotropic glutamate receptor family. Blockade of DmXR function with an antagonist lowers the repulsive effect of l-canavanine. In addition, disruption of the DmXR encoding gene, called mangetout (mtt), suppresses the l-canavanine repellent effect. To avoid the ingestion of l-canavanine, DmXR expression is required in bitter-sensitive gustatory receptor neurons, where it triggers the premature retraction of the proboscis, thus leading to the end of food searching. These findings show that the DmX receptor, which does not belong to the Gr family, fulfills a gustatory function necessary to avoid eating a natural toxin.
Identification of Rhoptry Trafficking Determinants and Evidence for a Novel Sorting Mechanism in the Malaria Parasite Plasmodium falciparum
Dave Richard equal contributor,Lev M. Kats equal contributor,Christine Langer,Casilda G. Black,Khosse Mitri,Justin A. Boddey,Alan F. Cowman ,Ross L. Coppel
PLOS Pathogens , 2009, DOI: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1000328
Abstract: The rhoptry of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum is an unusual secretory organelle that is thought to be related to secretory lysosomes in higher eukaryotes. Rhoptries contain an extensive collection of proteins that participate in host cell invasion and in the formation of the parasitophorous vacuole, but little is known about sorting signals required for rhoptry protein targeting. Using green fluorescent protein chimeras and in vitro pull-down assays, we performed an analysis of the signals required for trafficking of the rhoptry protein RAP1. We provide evidence that RAP1 is escorted to the rhoptry via an interaction with the glycosylphosphatidyl inositol-anchored rhoptry protein RAMA. Once within the rhoptry, RAP1 contains distinct signals for localisation within a sub-compartment of the organelle and subsequent transfer to the parasitophorous vacuole after invasion. This is the first detailed description of rhoptry trafficking signals in Plasmodium.
Nonsense-Mediated Decay Enables Intron Gain in Drosophila
Ashley Farlow equal contributor,Eshwar Meduri equal contributor,Marlies Dolezal,Liushuai Hua,Christian Schl?tterer
PLOS Genetics , 2010, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1000819
Abstract: Intron number varies considerably among genomes, but despite their fundamental importance, the mutational mechanisms and evolutionary processes underlying the expansion of intron number remain unknown. Here we show that Drosophila, in contrast to most eukaryotic lineages, is still undergoing a dramatic rate of intron gain. These novel introns carry significantly weaker splice sites that may impede their identification by the spliceosome. Novel introns are more likely to encode a premature termination codon (PTC), indicating that nonsense-mediated decay (NMD) functions as a backup for weak splicing of new introns. Our data suggest that new introns originate when genomic insertions with weak splice sites are hidden from selection by NMD. This mechanism reduces the sequence requirement imposed on novel introns and implies that the capacity of the spliceosome to recognize weak splice sites was a prerequisite for intron gain during eukaryotic evolution.
The Ustilago maydis Effector Pep1 Suppresses Plant Immunity by Inhibition of Host Peroxidase Activity
Christoph Hemetsberger equal contributor,Christian Herrberger equal contributor,Bernd Zechmann,Morten Hillmer,Gunther Doehlemann
PLOS Pathogens , 2012, DOI: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1002684
Abstract: The corn smut Ustilago maydis establishes a biotrophic interaction with its host plant maize. This interaction requires efficient suppression of plant immune responses, which is attributed to secreted effector proteins. Previously we identified Pep1 (Protein essential during penetration-1) as a secreted effector with an essential role for U. maydis virulence. pep1 deletion mutants induce strong defense responses leading to an early block in pathogenic development of the fungus. Using cytological and functional assays we show that Pep1 functions as an inhibitor of plant peroxidases. At sites of Δpep1 mutant penetrations, H2O2 strongly accumulated in the cell walls, coinciding with a transcriptional induction of the secreted maize peroxidase POX12. Pep1 protein effectively inhibited the peroxidase driven oxidative burst and thereby suppresses the early immune responses of maize. Moreover, Pep1 directly inhibits peroxidases in vitro in a concentration-dependent manner. Using fluorescence complementation assays, we observed a direct interaction of Pep1 and the maize peroxidase POX12 in vivo. Functional relevance of this interaction was demonstrated by partial complementation of the Δpep1 mutant defect by virus induced gene silencing of maize POX12. We conclude that Pep1 acts as a potent suppressor of early plant defenses by inhibition of peroxidase activity. Thus, it represents a novel strategy for establishing a biotrophic interaction.
Sequencing of Pooled DNA Samples (Pool-Seq) Uncovers Complex Dynamics of Transposable Element Insertions in Drosophila melanogaster
Robert Kofler equal contributor,Andrea J. Betancourt equal contributor,Christian Schl?tterer
PLOS Genetics , 2012, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1002487
Abstract: Transposable elements (TEs) are mobile genetic elements that parasitize genomes by semi-autonomously increasing their own copy number within the host genome. While TEs are important for genome evolution, appropriate methods for performing unbiased genome-wide surveys of TE variation in natural populations have been lacking. Here, we describe a novel and cost-effective approach for estimating population frequencies of TE insertions using paired-end Illumina reads from a pooled population sample. Importantly, the method treats insertions present in and absent from the reference genome identically, allowing unbiased TE population frequency estimates. We apply this method to data from a natural Drosophila melanogaster population from Portugal. Consistent with previous reports, we show that low recombining genomic regions harbor more TE insertions and maintain insertions at higher frequencies than do high recombining regions. We conservatively estimate that there are almost twice as many “novel” TE insertion sites as sites known from the reference sequence in our population sample (6,824 novel versus 3,639 reference sites, with on average a 31-fold coverage per insertion site). Different families of transposable elements show large differences in their insertion densities and population frequencies. Our analyses suggest that the history of TE activity significantly contributes to this pattern, with recently active families segregating at lower frequencies than those active in the more distant past. Finally, using our high-resolution TE abundance measurements, we identified 13 candidate positively selected TE insertions based on their high population frequencies and on low Tajima's D values in their neighborhoods.
Experimental Characterization of Cis-Acting Elements Important for Translation and Transcription in Halophilic Archaea
Mariam Brenneis equal contributor,Oliver Hering equal contributor,Christian Lange,J?rg Soppa
PLOS Genetics , 2007, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pgen.0030229
Abstract: The basal transcription apparatus of archaea is well characterized. However, much less is known about the mechanisms of transcription termination and translation initation. Recently, experimental determination of the 5′-ends of ten transcripts from Pyrobaculum aerophilum revealed that these are devoid of a 5′-UTR. Bioinformatic analysis indicated that many transcripts of other archaeal species might also be leaderless. The 5′-ends and 3′-ends of 40 transcripts of two haloarchaeal species, Halobacterium salinarum and Haloferax volcanii, have been determined. They were used to characterize the lengths of 5′-UTRs and 3′-UTRs and to deduce consensus sequence-elements for transcription and translation. The experimental approach was complemented with a bioinformatics analysis of the H. salinarum genome sequence. Furthermore, the influence of selected 5′-UTRs and 3′-UTRs on transcript stability and translational efficiency in vivo was characterized using a newly established reporter gene system, gene fusions, and real-time PCR. Consensus sequences for basal promoter elements could be refined and a novel element was discovered. A consensus motif probably important for transcriptional termination was established. All 40 haloarchaeal transcripts analyzed had a 3′-UTR (average size 57 nt), and their 3′-ends were not posttranscriptionally modified. Experimental data and genome analyses revealed that the majority of haloarchaeal transcripts are leaderless, indicating that this is the predominant mode for translation initiation in haloarchaea. Surprisingly, the 5′-UTRs of most leadered transcripts did not contain a Shine-Dalgarno (SD) sequence. A genome analysis indicated that less than 10% of all genes are preceded by a SD sequence and even most proximal genes in operons lack a SD sequence. Seven different leadered transcripts devoid of a SD sequence were efficiently translated in vivo, including artificial 5′-UTRs of random sequences. Thus, an interaction of the 5′-UTRs of these leadered transcripts with the 16S rRNA could be excluded. Taken together, either a scanning mechanism similar to the mechanism of translation initiation operating in eukaryotes or a novel mechanism must operate on most leadered haloarchaeal transcripts.
Comparative Genomics Reveals Two Novel RNAi Factors in Trypanosoma brucei and Provides Insight into the Core Machinery
Rebecca L. Barnes equal contributor,Huafang Shi equal contributor,Nikolay G. Kolev,Christian Tschudi ,Elisabetta Ullu
PLOS Pathogens , 2012, DOI: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1002678
Abstract: The introduction ten years ago of RNA interference (RNAi) as a tool for molecular exploration in Trypanosoma brucei has led to a surge in our understanding of the pathogenesis and biology of this human parasite. In particular, a genome-wide RNAi screen has recently been combined with next-generation Illumina sequencing to expose catalogues of genes associated with loss of fitness in distinct developmental stages. At present, this technology is restricted to RNAi-positive protozoan parasites, which excludes T. cruzi, Leishmania major, and Plasmodium falciparum. Therefore, elucidating the mechanism of RNAi and identifying the essential components of the pathway is fundamental for improving RNAi efficiency in T. brucei and for transferring the RNAi tool to RNAi-deficient pathogens. Here we used comparative genomics of RNAi-positive and -negative trypanosomatid protozoans to identify the repertoire of factors in T. brucei. In addition to the previously characterized Argonaute 1 (AGO1) protein and the cytoplasmic and nuclear Dicers, TbDCL1 and TbDCL2, respectively, we identified the RNA Interference Factors 4 and 5 (TbRIF4 and TbRIF5). TbRIF4 is a 3′-5′ exonuclease of the DnaQ superfamily and plays a critical role in the conversion of duplex siRNAs to the single-stranded form, thus generating a TbAGO1-siRNA complex required for target-specific cleavage. TbRIF5 is essential for cytoplasmic RNAi and appears to act as a TbDCL1 cofactor. The availability of the core RNAi machinery in T. brucei provides a platform to gain mechanistic insights in this ancient eukaryote and to identify the minimal set of components required to reconstitute RNAi in RNAi-deficient parasites.
ATM Release at Resected Double-Strand Breaks Provides Heterochromatin Reconstitution to Facilitate Homologous Recombination
Verena Geuting equal contributor,Christian Reul equal contributor,Markus L?brich
PLOS Genetics , 2013, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1003667
Abstract: Non-homologous end-joining (NHEJ) and homologous recombination (HR) represent the two main pathways for repairing DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs). During the G2 phase of the mammalian cell cycle, both processes can operate and chromatin structure is one important factor which determines DSB repair pathway choice. ATM facilitates the repair of heterochromatic DSBs by phosphorylating and inactivating the heterochromatin building factor KAP-1, leading to local chromatin relaxation. Here, we show that ATM accumulation and activity is strongly diminished at DSBs undergoing end-resection during HR. Such DSBs remain unrepaired in cells devoid of the HR factors BRCA2, XRCC3 or RAD51. Strikingly, depletion of KAP-1 or expression of phospho-mimic KAP-1 allows repair of resected DSBs in the absence of BRCA2, XRCC3 or RAD51 by an erroneous PARP-dependent alt-NHEJ process. We suggest that DSBs in heterochromatin elicit initial local heterochromatin relaxation which is reversed during HR due to the release of ATM from resection break ends. The restored heterochromatic structure facilitates HR and prevents usage of error-prone alternative processes.
The Cohesin Subunit Rad21 Is Required for Synaptonemal Complex Maintenance, but Not Sister Chromatid Cohesion, during Drosophila Female Meiosis
Evelin Urban equal contributor,Sonal Nagarkar-Jaiswal equal contributor,Christian F. Lehner,Stefan K. Heidmann
PLOS Genetics , 2014, DOI: doi/10.1371/journal.pgen.1004540
Abstract: Replicated sister chromatids are held in close association from the time of their synthesis until their separation during the next mitosis. This association is mediated by the ring-shaped cohesin complex that appears to embrace the sister chromatids. Upon proteolytic cleavage of the α-kleisin cohesin subunit at the metaphase-to-anaphase transition by separase, sister chromatids are separated and segregated onto the daughter nuclei. The more complex segregation of chromosomes during meiosis is thought to depend on the replacement of the mitotic α-kleisin cohesin subunit Rad21/Scc1/Mcd1 by the meiotic paralog Rec8. In Drosophila, however, no clear Rec8 homolog has been identified so far. Therefore, we have analyzed the role of the mitotic Drosophila α-kleisin Rad21 during female meiosis. Inactivation of an engineered Rad21 variant by premature, ectopic cleavage during oogenesis results not only in loss of cohesin from meiotic chromatin, but also in precocious disassembly of the synaptonemal complex (SC). We demonstrate that the lateral SC component C(2)M can interact directly with Rad21, potentially explaining why Rad21 is required for SC maintenance. Intriguingly, the experimentally induced premature Rad21 elimination, as well as the expression of a Rad21 variant with destroyed separase consensus cleavage sites, do not interfere with chromosome segregation during meiosis, while successful mitotic divisions are completely prevented. Thus, chromatid cohesion during female meiosis does not depend on Rad21-containing cohesin.
GLD-4-Mediated Translational Activation Regulates the Size of the Proliferative Germ Cell Pool in the Adult C. elegans Germ Line
Sophia Millonigg,Ryuji Minasaki equal contributor,Marco Nousch equal contributor,Christian R. Eckmann
PLOS Genetics , 2014, DOI: doi/10.1371/journal.pgen.1004647
Abstract: To avoid organ dysfunction as a consequence of tissue diminution or tumorous growth, a tight balance between cell proliferation and differentiation is maintained in metazoans. However, cell-intrinsic gene expression mechanisms controlling adult tissue homeostasis remain poorly understood. By focusing on the adult Caenorhabditis elegans reproductive tissue, we show that translational activation of mRNAs is a fundamental mechanism to maintain tissue homeostasis. Our genetic experiments identified the Trf4/5-type cytoplasmic poly(A) polymerase (cytoPAP) GLD-4 and its enzymatic activator GLS-1 to perform a dual role in regulating the size of the proliferative zone. Consistent with a ubiquitous expression of GLD-4 cytoPAP in proliferative germ cells, its genetic activity is required to maintain a robust proliferative adult germ cell pool, presumably by regulating many mRNA targets encoding proliferation-promoting factors. Based on translational reporters and endogenous protein expression analyses, we found that gld-4 activity promotes GLP-1/Notch receptor expression, an essential factor of continued germ cell proliferation. RNA-protein interaction assays documented also a physical association of the GLD-4/GLS-1 cytoPAP complex with glp-1 mRNA, and ribosomal fractionation studies established that GLD-4 cytoPAP activity facilitates translational efficiency of glp-1 mRNA. Moreover, we found that in proliferative cells the differentiation-promoting factor, GLD-2 cytoPAP, is translationally repressed by the stem cell factor and PUF-type RNA-binding protein, FBF. This suggests that cytoPAP-mediated translational activation of proliferation-promoting factors, paired with PUF-mediated translational repression of differentiation factors, forms a translational control circuit that expands the proliferative germ cell pool. Our additional genetic experiments uncovered that the GLD-4/GLS-1 cytoPAP complex promotes also differentiation, forming a redundant translational circuit with GLD-2 cytoPAP and the translational repressor GLD-1 to restrict proliferation. Together with previous findings, our combined data reveals two interconnected translational activation/repression circuitries of broadly conserved RNA regulators that maintain the balance between adult germ cell proliferation and differentiation.
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