R Martos

University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL, United States

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Publications (3)8.47 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: A small expressed sequence tag (EST) project generating 506 ESTs from 375 cDNAs was undertaken on the antennae of male Manduca sexta moths in an effort to discover olfactory receptor proteins. We encountered several clones that encode apparent transmembrane proteins; however, none is a clear candidate for an olfactory receptor. Instead we found a greater diversity of odourant binding proteins (OBPs) than previously known in moth antennae, raising the number known for M. sexta from three to seven. Together with evidence of seventeen members of the family from the Drosophila melanogaster genome project, our results suggest that insects may have many tens of OBPs expressed in subsets of the chemosensory sensilla on their antennae. These results support a model for insect olfaction in which OBPs selectively transport and present odourants to transmembrane olfactory receptors. We also found five members of a family of shorter proteins, named sensory appendage proteins (SAPs), that might also be involved in odourant transport. This small EST project also revealed several candidate odourant degrading enzymes including three P450 cytochromes, a glutathione S-transferase and a uridine diphosphate (UDP) glucosyltransferase. Several first insect homologues of proteins known from vertebrates, the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, yeast and bacteria were encountered, and most have now also been detected by the large D. melanogaster EST project. Only thriteen entirely novel proteins were encountered, some of which are likely to be cuticle proteins.
    Insect Molecular Biology 12/1999; 8(4):501-18. · 3.04 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Morphogenesis is a complex process operating at several levels of organization--organism, tissues, cells, and molecules. Complex interactions occur between and within these levels. Many of the molecules that mediate these interactions are predictably turning out to be large multidomain proteins. Here we describe one such novel protein associated with remodeling of epithelial monolayers in embryos and developing wings of the moth Manduca sexta. On the basis of its sequence and its expression pattern along lacunae of developing wings, we propose the name lacunin for this extracellular matrix protein that contains nine different types of domains, most of which are present in multiple copies. These include domains of various types: Kunitz proteinase inhibitors, thrombospondin type I, immunoglobulin-like, and several newly defined domains of unknown function (PAL, PLAC, and lagrin domains). This rich patchwork of distinct domains probably exerts multiple effects on a variety of cell behaviors associated with the complex phenomenon of epithelial morphogenesis.
    Insect Biochemistry and Molecular Biology 11/1999; 29(10):883-97. · 3.23 Impact Factor
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    H M Robertson, R Martos
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    ABSTRACT: A consensus sequence for the second ancient mariner identified in the human genome, Hsmar2, was constructed by majority rule from full-length and partial sequences of 44 of the +/-1000 copies in the genome. This 1300 base pair (bp) consensus has 31 bp imperfect terminal repeats (ITRs) and encodes a 351 amino acid (aa) mariner transposase. The sequence of this transposase has allowed classification of Hsmar2 as a basal lineage of the irritans subfamily of mariners, sharing at most 38% aa identity with other members of the subfamily. The individual copies in the human genome are all highly mutated from the consensus, having suffered numerous small and some large insertions and deletions (indels), including many insertions of S and J subfamily Alu elements. The copies differ, on average, from the consensus by 11.6%, have suffered 11.8 indels per kilobase (kb), and only 3.7% of the 30 hypermutable CpG dinucleotide pairs in the consensus remain intact. This level of divergence indicates that the ancestrally active Hsmar2 element represented by the consensus was present in the human genome lineage about 80 million years (Myr) ago. Each copy has apparently evolved since then largely independently of the others, and with little constraint on its transposase coding capacity. This pattern of molecular evolution fits the current model for mariner transposon evolution. These copies provide multiple independent datasets for evaluating the pattern of neutral evolution in the human genome, for example, they confirm that most indels are very short and that deletions are twice as common as insertions.
    Gene 01/1998; 205(1-2):219-28. · 2.20 Impact Factor