[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The primary limiting factor for effective IVF treatment is successful embryo implantation. Recurrent implantation failure (RIF) is a condition whereby couples fail to achieve pregnancy despite consecutive embryo transfers. Here we describe the collection of gene expression profiles from mid-luteal phase endometrial biopsies (n = 115) from women experiencing RIF and healthy controls. Using a signature discovery set (n = 81) we identify a signature containing 303 genes predictive of RIF. Independent validation in 34 samples shows that the gene signature predicts RIF with 100% positive predictive value (PPV). The strength of the RIF associated expression signature also stratifies RIF patients into distinct groups with different subsequent implantation success rates. Exploration of the expression changes suggests that RIF is primarily associated with reduced cellular proliferation. The gene signature will be of value in counselling and guiding further treatment of women who fail to conceive upon IVF and suggests new avenues for developing intervention.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background:
Genetic interactions, or non-additive effects between genes, play a crucial role in many cellular processes and disease. Which mechanisms underlie these genetic interactions has hardly been characterized. Understanding the molecular basis of genetic interactions is crucial in deciphering pathway organization and understanding the relationship between genotype, phenotype and disease.
To investigate the nature of genetic interactions between gene-specific transcription factors (GSTFs) in Saccharomyces cerevisiae, we systematically analyzed 72 GSTF pairs by gene expression profiling double and single deletion mutants. These pairs were selected through previously published growth-based genetic interactions as well as through similarity in DNA binding properties. The result is a high-resolution atlas of gene expression-based genetic interactions that provides systems-level insight into GSTF epistasis. The atlas confirms known genetic interactions and exposes new ones. Importantly, the data can be used to investigate mechanisms that underlie individual genetic interactions. Two molecular mechanisms are proposed, "buffering by induced dependency" and "alleviation by derepression".
These mechanisms indicate how negative genetic interactions can occur between seemingly unrelated parallel pathways and how positive genetic interactions can indirectly expose parallel rather than same-pathway relationships. The focus on GSTFs is important for understanding the transcription regulatory network of yeast as it uncovers details behind many redundancy relationships, some of which are completely new. In addition, the study provides general insight into the complex nature of epistasis and proposes mechanistic models for genetic interactions, the majority of which do not fall into easily recognizable within- or between-pathway relationships.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Febrile seizures are the most prevalent type of seizures among children up to 5 years of age (2-4% of Western-European children). Complex febrile seizures are associated with an increased risk to develop temporal lobe epilepsy. To investigate short- and long-term effects of experimental febrile seizures (eFS), we induced eFS in highly febrile convulsion-susceptible C57BL/6J mice at post-natal day 10 by exposure to hyperthermia (HT) and compared them to normotherm-exposed (NT) mice. We detected structural re-organization in the hippocampus 14 days after eFS. To identify molecular candidates, which entrain this structural re-organization, we investigated temporal changes in mRNA expression profiles eFS 1 hour to 56 days after eFS. We identified 931 regulated genes and profiled several candidates using in situ hybridization and histology at 3 and 14 days after eFS. This is the first study to report genome-wide transcriptome analysis after eFS in mice. We identify temporal regulation of multiple processes, such as stress-, immune- and inflammatory responses, glia activation, glutamate-glutamine cycle and myelination. Identification of the short- and long-term changes after eFS is important to elucidate the mechanisms contributing to epileptogenesis.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In this study, we explored the existence of a transcriptional network co-regulated by E2F7 and HIF1α, as we show that expression
of E2F7, like HIF1α, is induced in hypoxia, and because of the previously reported ability of E2F7 to interact with HIF1α.
Our genome-wide analysis uncovers a transcriptional network that is directly controlled by HIF1α and E2F7, and demonstrates
both stimulatory and repressive functions of the HIF1α -E2F7 complex. Among this network we reveal Neuropilin 1 (NRP1) as a HIF1α-E2F7 repressed gene. By performing in vitro and in vivo reporter assays we demonstrate that the HIF1α-E2F7 mediated NRP1 repression depends on a 41 base pairs ‘E2F-binding site hub’, providing a molecular mechanism for a previously unanticipated
role for HIF1α in transcriptional repression. To explore the biological significance of this regulation we performed in situ hybridizations and observed enhanced nrp1a expression in spinal motorneurons (MN) of zebrafish embryos, upon morpholino-inhibition of e2f7/8 or hif1α. Consistent with the chemo-repellent role of nrp1a, morpholino-inhibition of e2f7/8 or hif1α caused MN truncations, which was rescued in TALEN-induced nrp1ahu10012 mutants, and phenocopied in e2f7/8 mutant zebrafish. Therefore, we conclude that repression of NRP1 by the HIF1α-E2F7 complex regulates MN axon guidance in vivo.
Full-text · Article · Dec 2015 · Nucleic Acids Research
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Familial partial lipodystrophy type 3 (FPLD) is an autosomal dominant disease characterized by aberrant adipose distribution and metabolic disturbances, including insulin resistance and dyslipidemia.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Activity of FOXO (forkhead box O) transcription factors is inhibited by growth factor-PI3K (phosphoinositide 3-kinase)-PKB (protein kinase B)/Akt signalling to control a variety of cellular processes including cell cycle progression. Through comparative analysis of a number of microarray datasets we identified a set of genes commonly regulated by FOXO proteins and PI3K-PKB/Akt, which includes CTDSP2 (C-terminal domain small phosphatase 2). We validated CTDSP2 as a genuine FOXO target gene and show that ectopic CTDSP2 can induce cell cycle arrest. We analysed transcriptional regulation after CTDSP2 expression and identified extensive regulation of genes involved in cell cycle progression, which depends on the phosphatase activity of CTDSP2. The most notably regulated gene is the CDK (cyclin-dependent kinase) inhibitor p21Cip1/Waf1 and in the present study we show that p21Cip1/Waf1 is partially responsible for the cell cycle arrest through decreasing cyclin-CDK activity. Our data suggest that CTDSP2 induces p21Cip1/Waf1 through increasing the activity of Ras. As has been described previously, Ras induces p21Cip1/Waf1 through p53-dependent and p53-independent pathways and indeed both p53 and MEK inhibition can mitigate the CTDSP2-induced p21Cip1/Waf1 mRNA up-regulation. In support of Ras activation by CTDSP2, depletion of endogenous CTDSP2 results in reduced Ras activity and thus CTDSP2 seems to be part of a larger set of genes regulated by FOXO proteins, which increase growth factor signalling upon FOXO activation.
No preview · Article · Jul 2015 · Biochemical Journal
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: FOXO transcription factors are considered bona fide tumor suppressors; however, recent studies showed FOXOs are also required for tumor survival. Here, we identify FOXOs as transcriptional activators of IDH1. FOXOs promote IDH1 expression and thereby maintain the cytosolic levels of α-ketoglutarate and NADPH. In cancer cells carrying mutant IDH1, FOXOs likewise stimulate mutant IDH1 expression and maintain the levels of the oncometabolite 2-hydroxyglutarate, which stimulates cancer cell proliferation and inhibits TET enzymes and histone demethylases. Combined, our data provide a new paradigm for the paradoxical role of FOXOs in both tumor suppression and promotion.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Adaptive evolution is generally assumed to progress through the accumulation of beneficial mutations. However, as deleterious mutations are common in natural populations, they generate a strong selection pressure to mitigate their detrimental effects through compensatory genetic changes. This process can potentially influence directions of adaptive evolution by enabling evolutionary routes that are otherwise inaccessible. Therefore, the extent to which compensatory mutations shape genomic evolution is of central importance. Here, we studied the capacity of the baker's yeast genome to compensate the complete loss of genes during evolution, and explored the long-term consequences of this process. We initiated laboratory evolutionary experiments with over 180 haploid baker's yeast genotypes, all of which initially displayed slow growth owing to the deletion of a single gene. Compensatory evolution following gene loss was rapid and pervasive: 68% of the genotypes reached near wild-type fitness through accumulation of adaptive mutations elsewhere in the genome. As compensatory mutations have associated fitness costs, genotypes with especially low fitnesses were more likely to be subjects of compensatory evolution. Genomic analysis revealed that as compensatory mutations were generally specific to the functional defect incurred, convergent evolution at the molecular level was extremely rare. Moreover, the majority of the gene expression changes due to gene deletion remained unrestored. Accordingly, compensatory evolution promoted genomic divergence of parallel evolving populations. However, these different evolutionary outcomes are not phenotypically equivalent, as they generated diverse growth phenotypes across environments. Taken together, these results indicate that gene loss initiates adaptive genomic changes that rapidly restores fitness, but this process has substantial pleiotropic effects on cellular physiology and evolvability upon environmental change. Our work also implies that gene content variation across species could be partly due to the action of compensatory evolution rather than the passive loss of genes.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The detoxification of ammonia occurs mainly through conversion of ammonia to urea in the liver via the urea cycle and glutamine synthesis. Congenital portosystemic shunts (CPSS) in dogs cause hyperammonemia eventually leading to hepatic encephalopathy. In this study, the gene expression of urea cycle enzymes (carbamoylphosphate synthetase (CPS1), ornithine carbamoyltransferase (OTC), argininosuccinate synthetase (ASS1), argininosuccinate lyase (ASL), and arginase (ARG1)), N-acetylglutamate synthase (NAGS), Glutamate dehydrogenase (GLUD1), and glutamate-ammonia ligase (GLUL) was evaluated in dogs with CPSS before and after surgical closure of the shunt. Additionally, immunohistochemistry was performed on urea cycle enzymes and GLUL on liver samples of healthy dogs and dogs with CPSS to investigate a possible zonal distribution of these enzymes within the liver lobule and to investigate possible differences in distribution in dogs with CPSS compared to healthy dogs. Furthermore, the effect of increasing ammonia concentrations on the expression of the urea cycle enzymes was investigated in primary hepatocytes in vitro. Gene-expression of CPS1, OTC, ASL, GLUD1 and NAGS was down regulated in dogs with CPSS and did not normalize after surgical closure of the shunt. In all dogs GLUL distribution was localized pericentrally. CPS1, OTC and ASS1 were localized periportally in healthy dogs, whereas in CPSS dogs, these enzymes lacked a clear zonal distribution. In primary hepatocytes higher ammonia concentrations induced mRNA levels of CPS1. We hypothesize that the reduction in expression of urea cycle enzymes, NAGS and GLUD1 as well as the alterations in zonal distribution in dogs with CPSS may be caused by a developmental arrest of these enzymes during the embryonic or early postnatal phase.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Circadian rhythms are responsive to external and internal cues, light and metabolism being among the most important. In mammals, the light signal is sensed by the retina and transmitted to the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) master clock , where it is integrated into the molecular oscillator via regulation of clock gene transcription. The SCN synchronizes peripheral oscillators, an effect that can be overruled by incoming metabolic signals . As a consequence, peripheral oscillators can be uncoupled from the master clock when light and metabolic signals are not in phase. The signaling pathways responsible for coupling metabolic cues to the molecular clock are being rapidly uncovered [3-5]. Here we show that insulin-phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K)-Forkhead box class O3 (FOXO3) signaling is required for circadian rhythmicity in the liver via regulation of Clock. Knockdown of FoxO3 dampens circadian amplitude, an effect that is rescued by overexpression of Clock. Subsequently, we show binding of FOXO3 to two Daf-binding elements (DBEs) located in the Clock promoter area, implicating Clock as a transcriptional target of FOXO3. Transcriptional oscillation of both core clock and output genes in the liver of FOXO3-deficient mice is affected, indicating a disrupted hepatic circadian rhythmicity. Finally, we show that insulin, a major regulator of FOXO activity [6-9], regulates Clock levels in a PI3K- and FOXO3-dependent manner. Our data point to a key role of the insulin-FOXO3-Clock signaling pathway in the modulation of circadian rhythms.
Full-text · Article · Jun 2014 · Current biology: CB
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To understand regulatory systems, it would be useful to uniformly determine how different components contribute to the expression of all other genes. We therefore monitored mRNA expression genome-wide, for individual deletions of one-quarter of yeast genes, focusing on (putative) regulators. The resulting genetic perturbation signatures reflect many different properties. These include the architecture of protein complexes and pathways, identification of expression changes compatible with viability, and the varying responsiveness to genetic perturbation. The data are assembled into a genetic perturbation network that shows different connectivities for different classes of regulators. Four feed-forward loop (FFL) types are overrepresented, including incoherent type 2 FFLs that likely represent feedback. Systematic transcription factor classification shows a surprisingly high abundance of gene-specific repressors, suggesting that yeast chromatin is not as generally restrictive to transcription as is often assumed. The data set is useful for studying individual genes and for discovering properties of an entire regulatory system.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Objective:
Febrile seizures (FS) are the most common seizure type in young children. Complex FS are a risk factor for mesial temporal lobe epilepsy (mTLE). To identify new FS susceptibility genes we used a forward genetic strategy in mice and subsequently analyzed candidate genes in humans.
We mapped a quantitative trait locus (QTL1) for hyperthermia-induced FS on mouse chromosome 1, containing the signal recognition particle 9 (Srp9) gene. Effects of differential Srp9 expression were assessed in vivo and in vitro. Hippocampal SRP9 expression and genetic association were analyzed in FS and mTLE patients.
Srp9 was differentially expressed between parental strains C57BL/6J and A/J. Chromosome substitution strain 1 (CSS1) mice exhibited lower FS susceptibility and Srp9 expression than C57BL/6J mice. In vivo knockdown of brain Srp9 reduced FS susceptibility. Mice with reduced Srp9 expression and FS susceptibility, exhibited reduced hippocampal AMPA and NMDA currents. Downregulation of neuronal Srp9 reduced surface expression of AMPA receptor subunit GluA1. mTLE patients with antecedent FS had higher SRP9 expression than patients without. SRP9 promoter SNP rs12403575(G/A) was genetically associated with FS and mTLE.
Our findings identify SRP9 as a novel FS susceptibility gene and indicate that SRP9 conveys its effects through endoplasmic reticulum (ER)-dependent synthesis and trafficking of membrane proteins, such as glutamate receptors. Discovery of this new FS gene and mechanism may provide new leads for early diagnosis and treatment of children with complex FS at risk for mTLE.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Mediator, an evolutionary conserved large multisubunit protein complex with a central role in regulating RNA polymerase II-transcribed genes, serves as a molecular switchboard at the interface between DNA binding transcription factors and the general transcription machinery. Mediator subunits include the Cdk8 module, which has both positive and negative effects on activator-dependent transcription through the activity of the cyclin-dependent kinase Cdk8, and the tail module, which is required for positive and negative regulation of transcription, correct preinitiation complex formation in basal and activated transcription, and Mediator recruitment. Currently, the molecular mechanisms governing Mediator function remain largely undefined. Here we demonstrate an autoregulatory mechanism used by Mediator to repress transcription through the activity of distinct components of different modules. We show that the function of the tail module component Med3, which is required for transcription activation, is suppressed by the kinase activity of the Cdk8 module. Med3 interacts with, and is phosphorylated by, Cdk8; site-specific phosphorylation triggers interaction with and degradation by the Grr1 ubiquitin ligase, thereby preventing transcription activation. This active repression mechanism involving Grr1-dependent ubiquitination of Med3 offers a rationale for the substoichiometric levels of the tail module that are found in purified Mediator and the corresponding increase in tail components seen in cdk8 mutants.
Full-text · Article · Feb 2014 · Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Human embryos frequently harbor large-scale complex chromosomal errors that impede normal development. Affected embryos may fail to implant although many first breach the endometrial epithelium and embed in the decidualizing stroma before being rejected via mechanisms that are poorly understood. Here we show that developmentally impaired human embryos elicit an endoplasmic stress response in human decidual cells. A stress response was also evident upon in vivo exposure of mouse uteri to culture medium conditioned by low-quality human embryos. By contrast, signals emanating from developmentally competent embryos activated a focused gene network enriched in metabolic enzymes and implantation factors. We further show that trypsin, a serine protease released by pre-implantation embryos, elicits Ca(2+) signaling in endometrial epithelial cells. Competent human embryos triggered short-lived oscillatory Ca(2+) fluxes whereas low-quality embryos caused a heightened and prolonged Ca(2+) response. Thus, distinct positive and negative mechanisms contribute to active selection of human embryos at implantation.
Full-text · Article · Feb 2014 · Scientific Reports
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Diamond-Blackfan anemia (DBA) is a bone marrow failure syndrome linked to mutations in ribosomal protein (RP) genes that result in the impaired proliferation of hematopoietic progenitor cells. The etiology of DBA is not completely understood, however the ribosomal nature of the genes involved has led to speculation that these mutations may alter the landscape of mRNA translation. Here, we performed comparative microarray analysis of polysomal mRNA transcripts isolated from lymphoblastoid cell lines derived from DBA patients carrying various haploinsufficient mutations in either RPS19 or RPL11. Different spectrums of changes were observed depending on the mutant gene, with large differences found in RPS19 cells and very few in RPL11 cells. However, we find that the small number of altered transcripts in RPL11 overlap for the most part with those altered in RPS19 cells. We show specifically that levels of branched-chain aminotransferase-1 (BCAT1) transcripts are significantly decreased on the polysomes of both RPS19 and RPL11 cells, that translation of BCAT1 protein is especially impaired in cells with small RP gene mutations, and provide evidence that this effect may be due in part to the unusually long 5'UTR of the BCAT1 transcript. The BCAT1 enzyme carries out the final step in the biosynthesis and the first step of degradation of the branched-chain amino acids leucine, isoleucine, and valine. Interestingly, several animal models of DBA have reported that leucine ameliorates the anemia phenotypes generated by RPS19 loss. Our study suggests that RP mutations affect the synthesis of specific proteins involved in regulating amino acid levels that are important for maintaining the normal proliferative capacity of hematopoietic cells.
No preview · Article · Jan 2014 · Experimental hematology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Chromatin structure in transcribed regions poses a barrier for intragenic transcription. In a comprehensive study of the yeast
chromatin remodelers and the Mot1p-NC2 regulators of TATA-binding protein (TBP), we detected synthetic genetic interactions indicative of suppression of intragenic
transcription. Conditional depletion of Mot1p or NC2 in absence of the ISW1 remodeler, but not in the absence of other chromatin remodelers, activated the cryptic FLO8 promoter. Likewise, conditional depletion of Mot1p or NC2 in deletion backgrounds of the H3K36 methyltransferase Set2p or the Asf1p-Rtt106p histone H3-H4 chaperones, important factors
involved in maintaining a repressive chromatin environment, resulted in increased intragenic FLO8 transcripts. Activity of the cryptic FLO8 promoter is associated with reduced H3 levels, increased TBP binding and tri-methylation of H3K4 and is independent of Spt-Ada-Gcn5-acetyltransferase
function. These data reveal cooperation of negative regulation of TBP with specific chromatin regulators to inhibit intragenic
Preview · Article · Jan 2014 · Nucleic Acids Research
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Transcription termination in Saccharomyces cerevisiae can be performed by at least two distinct pathways and is influenced by the phosphorylation status of the carboxy-terminal domain (CTD) of RNA polymerase II (Pol II). Late termination of mRNAs is performed by the CPF/CF complex, the recruitment of which is dependent on CTD-Ser2 phosphorylation (Ser2P). Early termination of shorter cryptic unstable transcripts (CUTs) and small nucleolar/nuclear RNAs (sno/snRNAs) is performed by the Nrd1-Nab3-Sen1 (NNS) complex that binds phosphorylated CTD-Ser5 (Ser5P) via the CTD-interacting domain (CID) of Nrd1p. In this study, mutants of the different termination pathways were compared by genome-wide expression analysis. Surprisingly, the expression changes observed upon loss of the CTD-Ser2 kinase Ctk1p are more similar to those derived from alterations in the Ser5P-dependent NNS pathway, than from loss of CTD-Ser2P binding factors. Tiling array analysis of ctk1Δ cells reveals readthrough at snoRNAs, at many cryptic unstable transcripts (CUTs) and stable uncharacterized transcripts (SUTs), but only at some mRNAs. Despite the suggested predominant role in termination of mRNAs, we observed that a CTK1 deletion or a Pol II CTD mutant lacking all Ser2 positions does not result in a global mRNA termination defect. Rather, termination defects in these strains are widely observed at NNS-dependent genes. These results indicate that Ctk1p and Ser2 CTD phosphorylation have a wide impact in termination of small non-coding RNAs but only affect a subset of mRNA coding genes.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Messenger RNA (mRNA) synthesis and export are tightly linked, but the molecular mechanisms of this coupling are largely unknown. In Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the conserved TREX complex couples transcription to mRNA export and mediates mRNP formation. Here, we show that TREX is recruited to the transcription machinery by direct interaction of its subcomplex THO with the serine 2-serine 5 (S2/S5) diphosphorylated CTD of RNA polymerase II. S2 and/or tyrosine 1 (Y1) phosphorylation of the CTD is required for TREX occupancy in vivo, establishing a second interaction platform necessary for TREX recruitment in addition to RNA. Genome-wide analyses show that the occupancy of THO and the TREX components Sub2 and Yra1 increases from the 5' to the 3' end of the gene in accordance with the CTD S2 phosphorylation pattern. Importantly, in a mutant strain, in which TREX is recruited to genes but does not increase towards the 3' end, the expression of long transcripts is specifically impaired. Thus, we show for the first time that a 5'-3' increase of a protein complex is essential for correct expression of the genome. In summary, we provide insight into how the phospho-code of the CTD directs mRNP formation and export through TREX recruitment.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Transcriptional coregulators, including the acetyltransferase Tip60, have a key role in complex cellular processes such as differentiation. Whereas post-translational modifications have emerged as an important mechanism to regulate transcriptional coregulator activity, the identification of the corresponding demodifying enzymes has remained elusive. Here we show that the expression of the Tip60 protein, which is essential for adipocyte differentiation, is regulated through polyubiquitination on multiple residues. USP7, a dominant deubiquitinating enzyme in 3T3-L1 adipocytes and mouse adipose tissue, deubiquitinates Tip60 both in intact cells and in vitro and increases Tip60 protein levels. Furthermore, inhibition of USP7 expression and activity decreases adipogenesis. Transcriptome analysis reveals several cell cycle genes to be co-regulated by both Tip60 and USP7. Knockdown of either factor results in impaired mitotic clonal expansion, an early step in adipogenesis. These results reveal deubiquitination of a transcriptional coregulator to be a key mechanism in the regulation of early adipogenesis.
Full-text · Article · Oct 2013 · Nature Communications
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Congenital portosystemic shunts are developmental anomalies of the splanchnic vascular system that cause portal blood to bypass the liver. Large-breed dogs are predisposed for intrahepatic portosystemic shunts (IHPSS) and small-breed dogs for extrahepatic portosystemic shunts (EHPSS). While the phenotype resulting from portal bypass of the liver of the two types of shunt is identical, the genotype and molecular pathways involved are probably different. The aim of this study was to gain insight into the pathways involved in the different types of portosystemic shunting. Microarray analysis of mRNA expression in liver tissue from dogs with EHPSS and IHPSS revealed that the expression of 26 genes was altered in either IHPSS or EHPSS samples compared with that in liver samples from control dogs. Quantitative real-time PCR of these genes in 14 IHPSS, 17 EHPSS, and 8 control liver samples revealed a significant differential expression of , , , , , and . Immunohistochemistry and Western blotting confirmed an increased expression of VCAM1 in IHPSS but its absence in EHPSS, an increased WEE1 expression in IHPSS but not in EHPSS, and a decreased expression of CCBL1 in both shunt types. Regarding their physiologic functions, these findings may indicate a causative role for VCAM1 in IHPSS and WEE1 for IHPSS. CCBL1 could be an interesting candidate to study not yet elucidated aspects in the pathophysiology of hepatic encephalopathy.