Elina Salmela

University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Southern Finland Province, Finland

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Publications (11)44.66 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Lack of robust methods for establishment and expansion of pluripotent human embryonic stem (hES) cells still hampers development of cell therapy. Laminins (LN) are a family of highly cell-type specific basement membrane proteins important for cell adhesion, differentiation, migration and phenotype stability. Here we produce and isolate a human recombinant LN-521 isoform and develop a cell culture matrix containing LN-521 and E-cadherin, which both localize to stem cell niches in vivo. This matrix allows clonal derivation, clonal survival and long-term self-renewal of hES cells under completely chemically defined and xeno-free conditions without ROCK inhibitors. Neither LN-521 nor E-cadherin alone enable clonal survival of hES cells. The LN-521/E-cadherin matrix allows hES cell line derivation from blastocyst inner cell mass and single blastomere cells without a need to destroy the embryo. This method can facilitate the generation of hES cell lines for development of different cell types for regenerative medicine purposes.
    Nature Communications 01/2014; 5:3195. · 10.74 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Neural processes are explored through macroscopic neuroimaging and microscopic molecular measures, but the two levels remain primarily detached. The identification of direct links between the levels would facilitate use of imaging signals as probes of genetic function and, vice versa, access to molecular correlates of imaging measures. Neuroimaging patterns have been mapped for a few isolated genes, chosen based on their connection with a clinical disorder. Here we propose an approach that allows an unrestricted discovery of the genetic basis of a neuroimaging phenotype in the normal human brain. The essential components are a subject population that is composed of relatives and selection of a neuroimaging phenotype that is reproducible within an individual and similar between relatives but markedly variable across a population. Our present combined magnetoencephalography and genome-wide linkage study in 212 healthy siblings demonstrates that auditory cortical activation strength is highly heritable and, specifically in the right hemisphere, regulated oligogenically with linkages to chromosomes 2q37, 3p12, and 8q24. The identified regions delimit as candidate genes TRAPPC9, operating in neuronal differentiation, and ROBO1, regulating projections of thalamocortical axons. Identification of normal genetic variation underlying neurophysiological phenotypes offers a non-invasive platform for an in-depth, concerted capitalization of molecular and neuroimaging levels in exploring neural function.
    Journal of Neuroscience 10/2012; 32(42):14511-8. · 6.91 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The use of genome-wide single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) data has recently proven useful in the study of human population structure. We have studied the internal genetic structure of the Swedish population using more than 350,000 SNPs from 1525 Swedes from all over the country genotyped on the Illumina HumanHap550 array. We have also compared them to 3212 worldwide reference samples, including Finns, northern Germans, British and Russians, based on the more than 29,000 SNPs that overlap between the Illumina and Affymetrix 250K Sty arrays. The Swedes--especially southern Swedes--were genetically close to the Germans and British, while their genetic distance to Finns was substantially longer. The overall structure within Sweden appeared clinal, and the substructure in the southern and middle parts was subtle. In contrast, the northern part of Sweden, Norrland, exhibited pronounced genetic differences both within the area and relative to the rest of the country. These distinctive genetic features of Norrland probably result mainly from isolation by distance and genetic drift caused by low population density. The internal structure within Sweden (F(ST) = 0.0005 between provinces) was stronger than that in many Central European populations, although smaller than what has been observed for instance in Finland; importantly, it is of the magnitude that may hamper association studies with a moderate number of markers if cases and controls are not properly matched geographically. Overall, our results underline the potential of genome-wide data in analyzing substructure in populations that might otherwise appear relatively homogeneous, such as the Swedes.
    PLoS ONE 01/2011; 6(2):e16747. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Analyzing genetic variation of human populations for detecting loci that have been affected by positive natural selection is important for understanding adaptive history and phenotypic variation in humans. In this study, we analyzed recent positive selection in Northern Europe from genome-wide data sets of 250 000 and 500 000 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in a total of 999 individuals from Great Britain, Northern Germany, Eastern and Western Finland, and Sweden. Coalescent simulations were used for demonstrating that the integrated haplotype score (iHS) and long-range haplotype (LRH) statistics have sufficient power in genome-wide data sets of different sample sizes and SNP densities. Furthermore, the behavior of the F(ST) statistic in closely related populations was characterized by allele frequency simulations. In the analysis of the North European data set, 60 regions in the genome showed strong signs of recent positive selection. Out of these, 21 regions have not been discovered in previous scans, and many contain genes with interesting functions (eg, RAB38, INFG, NOS1AP, and APOE). In the putatively selected regions, we observed a statistically significant overrepresentation of genetic association with complex disease, which emphasizes the importance of the analysis of positive selection in understanding the evolution of human disease. Altogether, this study demonstrates the potential of genome-wide data sets to discover loci that lie behind evolutionary adaptation in different human populations.
    European journal of human genetics: EJHG 10/2009; 18(4):471-8. · 3.56 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A population sample representing the current Swedish population was analysed for maternally and paternally inherited markers with the aim of characterizing genetic variation and population structure. The sample set of 820 females and 883 males were extracted and amplified from Guthrie cards of all the children born in Sweden during one week in 2003. 14 Y-chromosomal and 34 mitochondrial DNA SNPs were genotyped. The haplogroup frequencies of the counties closest to Finland, Norway, Denmark and the Saami region in the north exhibited similarities to the neighbouring populations, resulting from the formation of the Swedish nation during the past millennium. Moreover, the recent immigration waves of the 20th century are visible in haplogroup frequencies, and have led to increased diversity and divergence of the major cities. Signs of genetic drift can be detected in several counties in northern as well as in southern Sweden. With the exception of the most drifted subpopulations, the population structure in Sweden appears mostly clinal. In conclusion, our study yielded valuable information of the structure of the Swedish population, and demonstrated the usefulness of biobanks as a source of population genetic research. Our sampling strategy, nonselective on the current population rather than stratified according to ancestry, is informative for capturing the contemporary variation in the increasingly panmictic populations of the world.
    Annals of Human Genetics 12/2008; 73(1):61-73. · 2.22 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: In this study, the population history of the Baltic Sea region, known to be affected by a variety of migrations and genetic barriers, was analyzed using both mitochondrial DNA and Y-chromosomal data. Over 1200 samples from Finland, Sweden, Karelia, Estonia, Setoland, Latvia and Lithuania were genotyped for 18 Y-chromosomal biallelic polymorphisms and 9 STRs, in addition to analyzing 17 coding region polymorphisms and the HVS1 region from the mtDNA. It was shown that the populations surrounding the Baltic Sea are genetically similar, which suggests that it has been an important route not only for cultural transmission but also for population migration. However, many of the migrations affecting the area from Central Europe, the Volga-Ural region and from Slavic populations have had a quantitatively different impact on the populations, and, furthermore, the effects of genetic drift have increased the differences between populations especially in the north. The possible explanations for the high frequencies of several haplogroups with an origin in the Iberian refugia (H1, U5b, I1a) are also discussed.
    Annals of Human Genetics 06/2008; 72(Pt 3):337-48. · 2.22 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Despite several thousands of years of close contacts, there are genetic differences between the neighbouring countries of Finland and Sweden. Within Finland, signs of an east-west duality have been observed, whereas the population structure within Sweden has been suggested to be more subtle. With a fine-scale substructure like this, inferring the cluster membership of individuals requires a large number of markers. However, some studies have suggested that this number could be reduced if the individual spatial coordinates are taken into account in the analysis. We genotyped 34 unlinked autosomal single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), originally designed for zygosity testing, from 2044 samples from Sweden and 657 samples from Finland, and 30 short tandem repeats (STRs) from 465 Finnish samples. We saw significant population structure within Finland but not between the countries or within Sweden, and isolation by distance within Finland and between the countries. In Sweden, we found a deficit of heterozygotes that we could explain by simulation studies to be due to both a small non-random genotyping error and hidden substructure caused by immigration. Geneland, a model-based Bayesian clustering algorithm, clustered the individuals into groups that corresponded to Sweden and Eastern and Western Finland when spatial coordinates were used, whereas in the absence of spatial information, only one cluster was inferred. We show that the power to cluster individuals based on their genetic similarity is increased when including information about the spatial coordinates. We also demonstrate the importance of estimating the size and effect of genotyping error in population genetics in order to strengthen the validity of the results.
    BMC Genetics 02/2008; 9:54. · 2.81 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Genome-wide data provide a powerful tool for inferring patterns of genetic variation and structure of human populations. In this study, we analysed almost 250,000 SNPs from a total of 945 samples from Eastern and Western Finland, Sweden, Northern Germany and Great Britain complemented with HapMap data. Small but statistically significant differences were observed between the European populations (F(ST) = 0.0040, p<10(-4)), also between Eastern and Western Finland (F(ST) = 0.0032, p<10(-3)). The latter indicated the existence of a relatively strong autosomal substructure within the country, similar to that observed earlier with smaller numbers of markers. The Germans and British were less differentiated than the Swedes, Western Finns and especially the Eastern Finns who also showed other signs of genetic drift. This is likely caused by the later founding of the northern populations, together with subsequent founder and bottleneck effects, and a smaller population size. Furthermore, our data suggest a small eastern contribution among the Finns, consistent with the historical and linguistic background of the population. Our results warn against a priori assumptions of homogeneity among Finns and other seemingly isolated populations. Thus, in association studies in such populations, additional caution for population structure may be necessary. Our results illustrate that population history is often important for patterns of genetic variation, and that the analysis of hundreds of thousands of SNPs provides high resolution also for population genetics.
    PLoS ONE 01/2008; 3(10):e3519. · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: An issue often encountered in statistical genetics is whether, or to what extent, it is possible to estimate the degree to which individuals sampled from a background population are related to each other, on the basis of the available genotype data and some information on the demography of the population. In this article, we consider this question using explicit modelling of the pedigrees and gene flows at unlinked marker loci, but then restricting ourselves to a relatively recent history of the population, that is, considering the genealogy at most some tens of generations backwards in time. As a computational tool we use a Markov chain Monte Carlo numerical integration on the state space of genealogies of the sampled individuals. As illustrations of the method, we consider the question of relatedness at the level of genes/genomes (IBD estimation), using both simulated and real data.
    Theoretical Population Biology 12/2007; 72(3):305-22. · 1.24 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Twenty-two Y-chromosomal markers, consisting of fourteen biallelic markers (YAP/DYS287, M170, M253, P37, M223, 12f2, M9, P43, Tat, 92R7, P36, SRY-1532, M17, P25) and eight STRs (DYS19, DYS385a/b, DYS388, DYS389I/II, DYS390, DYS391, DYS392, DYS393), were analyzed in 536 unrelated Finnish males from eastern and western subpopulations of Finland. The aim of the study was to analyze regional differences in genetic variation within the country, and to analyze the population history of the Finns. Our results gave further support to the existence of a sharp genetic border between eastern and western Finns so far observed exclusively in Y-chromosomal variation. Both biallelic haplogroup and STR haplotype networks showed bifurcated structures, and similar clustering was evident in haplogroup and haplotype frequencies and genetic distances. These results suggest that the western and eastern parts of the country have been subject to partly different population histories, which is also supported by earlier archaeological, historical and genetic data. It seems probable that early migrations from Finno-Ugric sources affected the whole country, whereas subsequent migrations from Scandinavia had an impact mainly on the western parts of the country. The contacts between Finland and neighboring Finno-Ugric, Scandinavian and Baltic regions are evident. However, there is no support for recent migrations from Siberia and Central Europe. Our results emphasize the importance of incorporating Y-chromosomal data to reveal the population substructure which is often left undetected in mitochondrial DNA variation. Early assumptions of the homogeneity of the isolated Finnish population have now proven to be false, which may also have implications for future association studies.
    Gene 08/2006; 376(2):207-15. · 2.20 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Association mapping is a common strategy for finding disease-related genes in complex disorders. Different association study designs exist, such as case-control studies or admixture mapping. We propose a strategy, subpopulation difference scanning (SDS), to exclude large fractions of the genome as locations of genes for complex disorders. This strategy is applicable to genes explaining disease incidence differences within founder populations, for example, in cardiovascular diseases in Finland. The strategy consists of genotyping a set of markers from unrelated individuals sampled from subpopulations with differing disease incidence but otherwise as similar as possible. When comparing allele or haplotype frequencies between the subpopulations, the genomic areas with little difference can be excluded as possible locations for genes causing the difference in incidence, and other areas therefore targeted with case-control studies. As tests of this strategy, we use real and simulated data to show that under realistic assumptions of population history and disease risk parameters, the strategy saves efforts of sampling and genotyping and most efficiently detects genes of low risk--that is, those most difficult to find with other strategies. In contrast to admixture mapping that uses the mixing of two different populations, the SDS strategy takes advantage of drift within highly related subpopulations.
    Journal of Medical Genetics 08/2006; 43(7):590-7. · 5.70 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

188 Citations
44.66 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2009–2014
    • University of Helsinki
      • Institute for Molecular Medicine Finland (FIMM)
      Helsinki, Southern Finland Province, Finland
  • 2008
    • Karolinska Institutet
      • Institutionen för biovetenskaper och näringslära
      Solna, Stockholm, Sweden