Jennifer S Bennetts

University of Queensland , Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

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Publications (7)20.51 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: The locus for autosomal recessive infantile cerebellar ataxia (CLA3 or SCAR6) has been mapped to chromosome 20q11-q13 in a single Norwegian pedigree. We identified a relatively uncharacterised mouse gene Tp53inp2, and showed that its human orthologue mapped within this candidate interval. Tp53inp2 appears to encode a mammalian-specific protein with homology to the two Tp53inp1 isoforms that respond to cellular stress and interact with p53. We show that Tp53inp2 expression is highly restricted during mouse embryogenesis, with strong expression in the developing brain and spinal cord, as well as in the sensory and motor neuron tracts of the peripheral nervous system. Given this expression pattern, the neurological phenotype of CLA3 and the chromosomal localisation of TP53INP2, we searched the coding region for mutations in samples from individuals from the CLA3 pedigree. Our failure to detect causative mutations suggests that alterations in the coding region of TP53INP2 are not responsible for ataxia in this family, although we cannot rule out changes in non-coding elements of this gene.
    Developmental Dynamics 04/2007; 236(3):843-52. · 2.59 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: In a screen for genes expressed in the embryonic mouse facial primordia, we identified the gene sequence annotated as KIAA0101, which has previously been shown to encode a novel proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA)-interacting protein named p15(PAF). We have since demonstrated that this protein also interacts in a complex with the tumour suppressor product p33ING1b, and that overexpression results in a decrease in UV-induced cell death. Although available data suggest widespread or ubiquitous expression in the adult, here we report highly restricted expression of the p15(PAF) gene in a spatio-temporal manner during mouse embryogenesis. Major sites of expression include the facial prominences, limbs, somites, brain, spinal cord and hair follicles. Based on the nature of its interacting partners, p15(PAF) is proposed to play a role in tumorigenesis. Our data also suggest a role in embryonic development, consistent with findings that a wide range of tumours result from aberrant activity of key developmental pathways.
    Gene Expression Patterns 02/2007; 7(1-2):47-50. · 1.64 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Cdca4 (Hepp) was originally identified as a gene expressed specifically in hematopoietic progenitor cells as opposed to hematopoietic stem cells. More recently, it has been shown to stimulate p53 activity and also lead to p53-independent growth inhibition when overexpressed. We independently isolated the murine Cdca4 gene in a genomic expression-based screen for genes involved in mammalian craniofacial development, and show that Cdca4 is expressed in a spatio-temporally restricted pattern during mouse embryogenesis. In addition to expression in the facial primordia including the pharyngeal arches, Cdca4 is expressed in the developing limb buds, brain, spinal cord, dorsal root ganglia, teeth, eye and hair follicles. Along with a small number of proteins from a range of species, the predicted CDCA4 protein contains a novel SERTA motif in addition to cyclin A-binding and PHD bromodomain-binding regions of homology. While the function of the SERTA domain is unknown, proteins containing this domain have previously been linked to cell cycle progression and chromatin remodelling. Using in silico database mining we have extended the number of evolutionarily conserved orthologues of known SERTA domain proteins and identified an uncharacterised member of the SERTA domain family, SERTAD4, with orthologues to date in human, mouse, rat, dog, cow, Tetraodon and chicken. Immunolocalisation of transiently and stably transfected epitope-tagged CDCA4 protein in mammalian cells suggests that it resides predominantly in the nucleus throughout all stages of the cell cycle.
    Gene 07/2006; 374:153-65. · 2.20 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The KIAA0101/p15(PAF)/OEATC-1 protein was initially isolated in a yeast two-hybrid screen for proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) binding partners, and was shown to bind PCNA competitively with the cell cycle regulator p21(WAF). PCNA is involved in DNA replication and damage repair. Using polyclonal antisera raised against a p15(PAF) fusion protein, we have shown that in a range of mammalian tumor and non-tumor cell lines the endogenous p15(PAF) protein localises to the nucleus and the mitochondria. Under normal conditions no co-localisation with PCNA could be detected, however following exposure to UV it was possible to co-immunoprecipitate p15(PAF) and PCNA from a number of cell lines, suggesting a UV-enhanced association of the two proteins. Overexpression of p15(PAF) in mammalian cells was also found to protect cells from UV-induced cell death. Based on similarities between the behaviour of p15(PAF) and the potential tumor suppressor product p33ING1b, we have further shown that these two proteins interact in the same complex in cell cultures. This suggests that p15(PAF) forms part of a larger protein complex potentially involved in the regulation of DNA repair, apoptosis and cell cycle progression.
    Experimental Cell Research 02/2006; 312(1):73-85. · 3.56 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Craniofacial anomalies are a common feature of human congenital dysmorphology syndromes, suggesting that genes expressed in the developing face are likely to play a wider role in embryonic development. To facilitate the identification of genes involved in embryogenesis, we previously constructed an enriched cDNA library by subtracting adult mouse liver cDNA from that of embryonic day (E)10.5 mouse pharyngeal arch cDNA. From this library, 273 unique clones were sequenced and known proteins binned into functional categories in order to assess enrichment of the library (1). We have now selected 31 novel and poorly characterised genes from this library and present bioinformatic analysis to predict proteins encoded by these genes, and to detect evolutionary conservation. Of these genes 61% (19/31) showed restricted expression in the developing embryo, and a subset of these was chosen for further in silico characterisation as well as experimental determination of subcellular localisation based on transient transfection of predicted full-length coding sequences into mammalian cell lines. Where a human orthologue of these genes was detected, chromosomal localisation was determined relative to known loci for human congenital disease.
    Frontiers in Bioscience 02/2006; 11:2631-46. · 3.29 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The mammalian retromer protein complex, which consists of three proteins--Vps26, Vps29, and Vps35--in association with members of the sorting nexin family of proteins, has been implicated in the trafficking of receptors and their ligands within the endosomal/lysosomal system of mammalian cells. A bioinformatic analysis of the mouse genome identified an additional transcribed paralog of the Vps26 retromer protein, which we termed Vps26B. No paralogs were identified for Vps29 and Vps35. Phylogenetic studies indicate that the two paralogs of Vps26 become evident after the evolution of the chordates. We propose that the chordate Vps26-like gene published previously be renamed Vps26A to differentiate it from Vps26B. As for Vps26A, biochemical characterization of Vps26B established that this novel 336 amino acid residue protein is a peripheral membrane protein. Vps26B co-precipitated with Vps35 from transfected cells and the direct interaction between these two proteins was confirmed by yeast 2-hybrid analysis, thereby establishing Vps26B as a subunit of the retromer complex. Within HeLa cells, Vps26B was found in the cytoplasm with low levels at the plasma membrane, while Vps26A was predominantly associated with endosomal membranes. Within A549 cells, both Vps26A and Vps26B co-localized with actin-rich lamellipodia at the cell surface. These structures also co-localized with Vps35. Total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy confirmed the association of Vps26B with the plasma membrane in a stable HEK293 cell line expressing cyan fluorescent protein (CFP)-Vps26B. Based on these observations, we propose that the mammalian retromer complex is located at both endosomes and the plasma membrane in some cell types.
    Traffic 12/2005; 6(11):991-1001. · 4.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Using a subtractive hybridisation approach, we enriched for genes likely to play a role in embryonic development of the mammalian face and other structures. This was achieved by subtracting cDNA derived from adult mouse liver from that derived from 10.5 dpc mouse embryonic branchial arches 1 and 2. Random sequencing of clones from the resultant library revealed that a high percentage correspond to genes with a previously established role in embryonic development and disease, while 15% represent novel or uncharacterised genes. Whole mount in situ hybridisation analysis of novel genes revealed that approximately 50% have restricted expression during embryonic development. In addition to expression in branchial arches, these genes showed a range of expression domains commonly including neural tube and somites. Notably, all genes analysed were found to be expressed not only in the branchial arches but also in the developing limb buds, providing support for the hypothesis that development of the limbs and face is likely to involve analogous molecular processes.
    genesis 03/2003; 35(2):73-87. · 2.58 Impact Factor