[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Contamination of soil and water by heavy metals has become a widespread problem; environmental pollution by high zinc (Zn) concentration occurs frequently. Although poplar (Populus spp.) has been identified as suitable for phytoremediation approaches, its response to high Zn concentrations are still not clearly understood. For this reason, we investigated the effects of Zn in Populus × euramericana clone I-214 roots by proteomic analysis. Comparative experiments were conducted on rooted woody cuttings grown in nutrient solutions containing 1 mM (treatment) or 1 μM (control) Zn concentrations. A gel-based proteomic approach coupled with morphological and chemical analysis was used to identify differentially represented proteins in treated roots and to investigate the effect of Zn treatment on the poplar root system. Data shows that Zn was accumulated preferentially in roots, that the antioxidant system, the carbohydrate/energy and amino acid metabolisms were the main pathways modulated by Zn excess, and that mitochondria and vacuoles were the cellular organelles predominately affected by Zn stress. A coordination between cell death and proliferation/growth seems to occur under this condition to counteract the Zn-induced damage.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Woody plants living in temperate climates finely regulate their growth and development in relation to seasonal changes; their transition from vegetative to dormancy phase represents an adaptation to their environment. Events occurring in the shoot during onset/release from dormancy have been largely investigated, whereas in woody roots they remain completely unknown. In recent years, we have been interested in understanding the molecular and physiological events occurring in poplar woody root during release from dormancy. Here, we propose the results of a comparative analysis of the proteome of poplar woody root sampled at different time points: T0 (dormancy condition), T1 (release from dormancy), and T2 (full vegetative condition). This study identified proteins that may be involved in the long-term survival of a dormant root or landmarking a specific time point.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Aphids are among the most destructive pests in temperate climates, causing significant damage on several crops including tomato. We carried out a transcriptomic and proteomic study to get insights into the molecular mechanisms and dynamics of the tomato response to the Macrosyphum euphorbiae aphid.
The time course analysis of aphid infestation indicated a complex, dynamic pattern of gene expression. Several biological functions were affected and genes related to the stress and defence response were the most represented. The Gene Ontology categories of the differentially expressed genes (899) and identified proteins (57) indicated that the tomato response is characterized by an increased oxidative stress accompanied by the production of proteins involved in the detoxification of oxygen radicals. Aphids elicit a defense reaction based on the cross-communication of different hormone-related signaling pathways such as those related to the salicylic acid (SA), jasmonic acid (JA), ethylene and brassinosteroids. Among them, the SA-signaling pathway and stress-responsive SA-dependent genes play a dominant role. Furthermore, tomato response is characterized by a reduced accumulation of photosynthetic proteins and a modification of the expression of various cell wall related genes.
Our work allowed a more comprehensive understanding of the signaling events and the defense dynamics of the tomato response to aphids in a compatible interaction and, based on experimental data, a model of the tomato--aphid molecular interaction was proposed. Considering the rapid advancement of tomato genomics, this information will be important for the development of new protection strategies.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Temperate perennial woody plants use different environmental signals to coordinate their growth and development in relation to seasonal changes. Preliminary evidences suggest that, even during dormancy, plants maintain effective metabolic activities and molecular mechanisms ensuring them an eventual recording of mechanical loads during winter times. Despite their great importance for productivity and survival, plant biology investigations have poorly characterized the root growth cycle and its response to environmental stresses. In this study, we describe the proteomic changes occurring over the time in poplar root either in the absence or in response to a bending stress; corresponding expression of cell cycle regulator and auxin transporter genes was also evaluated by reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction analysis (RT-PCR). Our results confirm previous evidences on the effect of the bending stress on the anticipation of root growth resumption, providing additional insights on a temporal modulation of various plant metabolic processes involved in dormancy break, growth resumption and stress response in the bent root; these events seem related to the differential compression and tension force distribution occurring over the plant taproot.
Physiologia Plantarum 05/2013; · 3.66 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Plants, as sessile organisms, are continuously exposed to temperature changes in the environment. Low and high temperature stresses have a great impact on agricultural productivity, since they significantly alter plant metabolism and physiology. Plant response to temperature stress is a quantitative character, being influenced by the degree of stress, time of exposure, as well as plant adaptation ability; it involves profound cellular changes at the proteomic level. We describe here the quantitative variations of the protein repertoire of Arabidopsis thaliana rosette leaves after exposing seedlings to either short-term cold or heat temperature stress. A proteomic approach, based on two-dimensional electrophoresis and MALDI-TOF peptide mass fingerprinting and/or nanoLC-ESI-LIT-MS/MS experiments, was used for this purpose. The comparison of the resulting proteomic maps highlighted proteins showing quantitative variations induced by temperature treatments. Thirty-eight protein spots exhibited significant quantitative changes under at least one stress condition. Identified, differentially-represented proteins belong to two main broad functional groups, namely energy production/carbon metabolism and response to abiotic and oxidative stresses. The role of the identified proteins is discussed here in relation to plant adaptation to cold or heat stresses. Our results suggest a significant overlapping of the responses to opposite temperature extremes.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Subclinical mastitis is one of the main causes of alteration in milk content and has a major impact on both animal welfare and economy in the dairy industry. A better knowledge is needed to understand the ovine mammary gland metabolism and its response to bacterial infection. In this study, the proteomic changes in ovine milk as result of subclinical mastitis were investigated by comparing both whey and fat globule membrane profiles of samples from Staphylococcus chromogenes-positive individuals, with those from non-infected counterparts having high or low somatic cell count; the latter were used as control. 2-DE and combined MS procedures were utilized to this purpose. Although sample bromatological parameters were very similar, proteomic analysis highlighted significant differences between the three experimental groups. Most relevant changes were observed between samples of infected milk and control. Modifications related to the defense response of the mammary gland to the pathogen were evident, with important consequences on nutritional and technological properties of milk. On the other hand, quantitative protein changes between non-infected samples with low and high levels of somatic cells indicated that the latter may result as a consequence of a probable unpaired cellular metabolism due to cellular stress, hormonal variations or previous infections. Putative biomarkers useful for the monitoring of sheep mammary metabolism and for the careful management of ovine subclinical mastitis to avoid its clinical degeneration are proposed and discussed. BIOLOGICAL SIGNIFICANCE: Proteomics has been here applied to the differentiation of healthy and subclinical mastitic sheep milk samples, evidencing the response of the mammary gland to Staphylococcus chromogenes infection. Presented results propose useful protein biomarkers for the detection of ewe mammary infection at its subclinical stages and, subsequently, mastitis recognition and treatment. Differently from bovine, these data confirm that the increase in somatic cell count in sheep milk is not always associated with protein factors that characterize the mammary gland infection; accordingly, somatic cell count cannot be considered as a useful parameter to certainly diagnose subclinical mastitis in ovine.
Journal of proteomics 04/2013; · 5.07 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Carbonic anhydrase IX (CA IX) is a transmembrane protein affecting pH regulation, cell migration/invasion and survival in hypoxic tumors. Although the pathways related to CA IX have begun to emerge, molecular partners mediating its functions remain largely unknown. Here we characterize the CA IX interactome in hypoxic HEK-293 cells. Most of the identified CA IX-binding partners contain the HEAT/ARM repeat domain and belong to the nuclear transport machinery. We show that the interaction with two of these proteins, namely XPO1 exportin and TNPO1 importin, occurs via the C-terminal region of CA IX and increases with protein phosphorylation. We also demonstrate that nuclear CA IX is enriched in hypoxic cells and present in renal cell carcinoma tissues. These data place CA IX among the cell-surface signal transducers undergoing nuclear translocation. Accordingly, CA IX interactome involves also CAND1, which participates in both gene transcription and assembly of SCF ubiquitin ligase complexes. Noteworthy, down-regulation of CAND1 leads to decreased CA IX protein level apparently via affecting its stability. Our findings provide the first evidence that CA IX interacts with proteins involved in nuclear/cytoplasmic transport, gene transcription and protein stability, and suggest the existence of nuclear CA IX protein subpopulations with a potential intracellular function, distinct from the crucial CA IX role at the cell surface.
Journal of Proteome Research 11/2012; · 5.06 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background
A bacterial strain previously isolated from pyrite mine drainage and named BAS-10 was
tentatively identified as Klebsiella oxytoca. Unlikely other enterobacteria, BAS-10 is able to
grow on Fe(III)-citrate as sole carbon and energy source, yielding acetic acid and CO2
coupled with Fe(III) reduction to Fe(II), and showing unusual physiological characteristics.
In fact, under this growth condition, BAS-10 produces an exopolysaccharide (EPS) having a
high rhamnose content and metal-binding properties, whose biotechnological applications
were proven as very relevant.
Further phylogenetic analysis, based on 16S rDNA sequence, definitively confirmed that
BAS-10 belongs to K. oxytoca species. In order to rationalize the biochemical peculiarities of
this unusual enterobacteriun, combined 2D-Differential Gel Electrophoresis (2D-DIGE)
analysis and mass spectrometry procedures were used to investigate its proteomic changes: i)
under aerobic or anaerobic cultivation with Fe(III)-citrate as sole carbon source; ii) under
anaerobic cultivations using Na(I)-citrate or Fe(III)-citrate as sole carbon source. Combining
data from these differential studies peculiar levels of outer membrane proteins, key regulatory
factors of carbon and nitrogen metabolism and enzymes involved in TCA cycle and sugar
biosynthesis or required for citrate fermentation and stress response during anaerobic growth
on Fe(III)-citrate were revealed. The protein differential regulation seems to ensure efficient
cell growth coupled with EPS production by adapting metabolic and biochemical processes in
order to face iron toxicity and to optimize energy production.
Differential proteomics provided insights on the molecular mechanisms necessary for
anaeorobic utilization of Fe(III)-citrate in a biotechnologically promising enterobacteriun,
also revealing genes that can be targeted for the rational design of high-yielding EPS
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The fruit fly Bactrocera oleae is the primary biotic stressor of cultivated olives, causing direct and indirect damages that significantly reduce both the yield and the quality of olive oil. To study the olive-B. oleae interaction, we conducted transcriptomic and proteomic investigations of the molecular response of the drupe. The identifications of genes and proteins involved in the fruit response were performed using a Suppression Subtractive Hybridisation technique and a combined bi-dimensional electrophoresis/nanoLC-ESI-LIT-MS/MS approach, respectively.
We identified 196 ESTs and 26 protein spots as differentially expressed in olives with larval feeding tunnels. A bioinformatic analysis of the identified non-redundant EST and protein collection indicated that different molecular processes were affected, such as stress response, phytohormone signalling, transcriptional control and primary metabolism, and that a considerable proportion of the ESTs could not be classified. The altered expression of 20 transcripts was also analysed by real-time PCR, and the most striking differences were further confirmed in the fruit of a different olive variety. We also cloned the full-length coding sequences of two genes, Oe-chitinase I and Oe-PR27, and showed that these are wound-inducible genes and activated by B. oleae punctures.
This study represents the first report that reveals the molecular players and signalling pathways involved in the interaction between the olive fruit and its most damaging biotic stressor. Drupe response is complex, involving genes and proteins involved in photosynthesis as well as in the production of ROS, the activation of different stress response pathways and the production of compounds involved in direct defence against phytophagous larvae. Among the latter, trypsin inhibitors should play a major role in drupe resistance reaction.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Physical exercise induces various stress responses and metabolic adaptations that have not yet been completely elucidated. Novel biomarkers are needed in sport veterinary medicine to monitor training levels and to detect subclinical conditions that can develop into exercise-related diseases. In this study, protein modifications in horse plasma induced by prolonged, aerobic physical exercise were investigated by using a proteomic approach based on 2-DE and combined mass spectrometry procedures. Thirty-eight protein spots, associated with expression products of 13 genes, showed significant quantitative changes; spots identified as membrane Cu amine oxidase, α-1 antitrypsin, α-1 antitrypsin-related protein, caeruloplasmin, α-2 macroglobulin and complement factor C4 were augmented in relative abundance after the race, while haptoglobin β chain, apolipoprotein A-I, transthyretin, retinol binding protein 4, fibrinogen γ chain, complement factor B and albumin fragments were reduced. These results indicate that prolonged physical exercise affects plasma proteins involved in pathways related to inflammation, coagulation, immune modulation, oxidant/antioxidant activity and cellular and vascular damage, with consequent effects on whole horse metabolism.
Journal of proteomics 04/2012; 75(14):4494-504. · 5.07 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The alkB gene, encoding an alkane monooxygenase in the actinomycete Gordonia sp. SoCg, was expressed in the non-alkane-degrading actinomycete Streptomyces coelicolor M145. The resulting engineered strain, M145-AH, can grow on n-hexadecane as sole carbon source. To unravel proteins associated with growth on n-alkanes, proteome of M145-AH after 6, 24, and 48 h of incubation in the Bushnell-Haas (BH) mineral medium containing n-hexadecane as sole carbon source (H condition) and in BH without any carbon source (0 condition) were compared using 2D-differential gel electrophoresis. Proteome analysis revealed significant changes only at 48 h, showing 48 differentially abundant proteins identified by mass spectrometry procedures. To asses if these proteins were specifically related to n-hexadecane metabolism, their expression was investigated, comparing H proteome with that of M145-AH incubated in BH with glucose as sole carbon source (G condition). Thus, protein expression profiles at 6, 24, and 48 h under H, 0, and G conditions were combined, revealing that M145-AH regulates in a temporally- and carbon source-dependent manner the expression of proteins involved in regulatory events, central carbon metabolism, respiration, β-oxidation, membrane transport, and amino acid and protein metabolism. Interestingly, 21 % of them, mostly involved in membrane transport and protein metabolism, showed a n-hexadecane-dependent regulation with regulatory proteins such as CRP likely to have a key role in M145-AH n-hexadecane growth. These results, expanding the knowledge on n-alkane utilization in Gram-positive bacteria, reveal genes to be targeted to develop an efficient S. coelicolor M145-AH-based bioremediation system.
Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology 04/2012; 94(5):1289-301. · 3.81 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Morphological and biomechanical alterations occurring in woody roots of many plant species in response to mechanical stresses are well documented; however, little is known about the molecular mechanisms regulating these important alterations. The first forest tree genome to be decoded is that of Populus, thereby providing a tool with which to investigate the mechanisms controlling adaptation of woody roots to changing environments. The aim of this study was to use a proteomic approach to investigate the response of Populus nigra woody taproot to mechanical stress.
To simulate mechanical perturbations, the taproots of 30 one-year-old seedlings were bent to an angle of 90 ° using a steel net. A spatial and temporal two-dimensional proteome map of the taproot axis was obtained. We compared the events occurring in the above-bending, central bending and below-bending sectors of the taproot.
The first poplar woody taproot proteome map is reported here; a total of 207 proteins were identified. Spatial and temporal proteomic analysis revealed that factors involved in plant defence, metabolism, reaction wood formation and lateral root development were differentially expressed in the various sectors of bent vs. control roots, seemingly in relation to the distribution of mechanical forces along the stressed woody taproots. A complex interplay among different signal transduction pathways involving reactive oxygen species appears to modulate these responses.
Poplar woody root uses different temporal and spatial mechanisms to respond to mechanical stress. Long-term bending treatment seem to reinforce the defence machinery, thereby enabling the taproot to better overcome winter and to be ready to resume growth earlier than controls.
Annals of Botany 03/2012; 110(2):415-32. · 3.45 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Osteoarthritis (OA) and osteochondrosis (OC) are two of the main challenges in orthopedics, whose definitive diagnosis is usually based on radiographic/arthroscopic evidences. Their early diagnosis should allow preventive or timely therapeutic actions, which are generally precluded from the poor relationships occurring between symptomatologic and radiographic evidences. These limitations should be overcome by improving the knowledge on articular tissue metabolism and on molecular factors regulating its normal homeostasis, also identifying novel OA and OC biomarkers suitable for their earlier diagnoses, whenever clinical/pathological inflammatory scenarios between these joint diseases seem somewhat related. To identify proteins involved in their aetiology and progression, we undertook a differential proteomic analysis of equine synovial fluid (SF), which compared the protein pattern of OA or OC patients with that of healthy individuals. Deregulated proteins in OA and OC included components related to inflammatory state, coagulation pathways, oxidative stress and matrix damage, which were suggestive of pathological alterations in articular homeostasis, plasma-SF exchange, joint nutritional status and vessel permeability. Some proteins seemed commonly deregulated in both pathologies indicating that, regardless of the stimulus, common pathways are affected and/or the animal joint uses the same molecular mechanisms to restore its homeostasis. On the other hand, the increased number of deregulated proteins observed in OA with respect to OC, together with their nature, confirmed the high inflammatory character of this disease. Some deregulated proteins in OA found a verification by analyzing the SF of injured arthritic joints following autologous conditioned serum treatment, an emergent therapy that provides positive results for both human and equine OA. Being the horse involved in occupational/sporting activities and considered as an excellent animal model for human joint diseases, our data provide suggestive information for tentative biomedical extrapolations, allowing to overcome the limitations in joint size and workload that are typical of other small animal models.
Journal of proteomics 02/2012; 75(14):4478-93. · 5.07 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A dominant mutation in the ITM2B/BRI2 gene causes familial Danish dementia (FDD) in humans. To model FDD in animal systems, a knock-in approach was recently implemented in mice expressing a wild-type and mutant allele, which bears the FDD-associated mutation. Since these FDD(KI) mice show behavioural alterations and impaired synaptic function, we characterized their synaptosomal proteome via two-dimensional differential in-gel electrophoresis. After identification by nanoliquid chromatography coupled to electrospray-linear ion trap tandem mass spectrometry, the differentially expressed proteins were classified according to their gene ontology descriptions and their predicted functional interactions. The Dlg4/Psd95 scaffold protein and additional signalling proteins, including protein phosphatases, were revealed by STRING analysis as potential players in the altered synaptic function of FDD(KI) mice. Immunoblotting analysis finally demonstrated the actual downregulation of the synaptosomal scaffold protein Dlg4/Psd95 and of the dual-specificity phosphatase Dusp3 in the synaptosomes of FDD(KI) mice.
BioMed Research International 01/2012; 2012:728178. · 2.71 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Actinomycetes, filamentous Gram-positive bacteria, are usually exploited as bio-farms naturally producing a wide range of small biologically active metabolites, such as antibiotics, extensively used in medicine, food-industry, chemistry and bio-remediation strategies. The development of high throughput technologies, like proteomics, allows functional genomic studies aimed at shedding light on molecular mechanisms controlling the production of useful compounds and macromolecules. Differential proteomic analyses, performed by using Two Dimensional PolyAcrylamide Gel Electrophoresis (2D-PAGE) coupled to mass spectrometry (MS) procedures, revealed novel links between balhimycin production (a vancomycin-like antibiotic) and metabolic pathway regulation in Amycolatopsis balhimycina DSM5908. In particular, our investigation, performed by combining data from differential proteomic analyses carried-out using wild-type (Wt) and non-producing strains incubated in different growth conditions, showed that antibiotic production is always associated with the up-regulation of either specific enzymes of balhimycin (bal) biosynthetic gene cluster and enzymes related to central carbon metabolism, cell energy and redox balance. Thus this approach suggested new insights to improve fermentation technology strategies and revealed target genes for synthetic biology approaches aimed to improve antibiotic yield production.
Chemical Engineering Transactions. 01/2012; 27:217-222.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Maillard reaction between lactose and proteins occurs during thermal treatment of milk and lactosylated β-lactoglobulin, α-lactalbumin and caseins have widely been used to monitor the quality of dairy products. We recently demonstrated that a number of other whey milk proteins essential for nutrient delivery, defense against bacteria/virus and cellular proliferation become lactosylated during milk processing. The extent of their modification is associated with the harshness of product manufacturing. Since fat globule proteins are also highly important for the health-beneficial properties of milk, an evaluation of their lactosylation is crucial for a complete understanding of aliment nutritional characteristics. This is more important when milk is the unique dietary source, as in the infant diet. To this purpose, a sequential proteomic procedure involving an optimized milk fat globule (MFG) preparation/electrophoretic resolution, shot-gun analysis of gel portions for protein identification, selective trapping of lactosylated peptides by phenylboronate chromatography and their analysis by nanoLC-ESI-electron transfer dissociation (ETD) tandem MS was used for systematic characterization of fat globule proteins in milk samples subjected to various manufacturing procedures. Significant MFG protein compositional changes were observed between samples, highlighting the progressive adsorption of caseins and whey proteins on the fat globule surface as result of the technological process used. A significant lactosylation of MFG proteins was observed in ultra-high temperature sterilized and powdered for infant nutrition milk preparations, which well paralleled with the harshness of thermal treatment. Globally, this study allowed the identification of novel 157 non-redundant modification sites and 35 MFG proteins never reported so far as being lactosylated, in addition to the 153 ones ascertained here as present on other 21 MFG-adsorbed proteins whose nature was already characterized. Novel MFG proteins include components involved in nutrient delivery, defense response against pathogens and cellular proliferation/differentiation. Nutritional, biological and toxicological consequences of these findings are here discussed, highlighting their possible impact on children's diet.
Journal of proteomics 10/2011; 74(11):2453-75. · 5.07 Impact Factor