ResearchPad - mitochondrial-dna https://www.researchpad.co Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[Comparative mitochondrial genome analysis of <i>Dendrolimus houi</i> (Lepidoptera: Lasiocampidae) and phylogenetic relationship among Lasiocampidae species]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_14575 Dendrolimus houi is one of the most common caterpillars infesting Gymnosperm trees, and widely distributed in several countries in Southeast Asia, and exists soley or coexists with several congeners and some Lasiocampidae species in various forest habitats. However, natural hybrids occasionally occur among some closely related species in the same habitat, and host preference, extreme climate stress, and geographic isolation probably lead to their uncertain taxonomic consensus. The mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) of D. houi was extracted and sequenced by using high-throughput technology, and the mitogenome composition and characteristics were compared and analyzed of these species, then the phylogenetic relationship was constructed using the maximum likelihood method (ML) and the Bayesian method (BI) based on their 13 protein-coding genes (PCGs) dataset, which were combined and made available to download which were combined and made available to download among global Lasiocampidae species data. Mitogenome of D. houi was 15,373 bp in length, with 37 genes, including 13 PCGs, 22 tRNA genes (tRNAs) and 2 rRNA genes (rRNAs). The positions and sequences of genes were consistent with those of most known Lasiocampidae species. The nucleotide composition was highly A+T biased, accounting for ~80% of the whole mitogenome. All start codons of PCGs belonged to typical start codons ATN except for COI which used CGA, and most stop codons ended with standard TAA or TAG, while COI, COII, ND4 ended with incomplete T. Only tRNASer (AGN) lacked DHU arm, while the remainder formed a typical “clover-shaped” secondary structure. For Lasiocampidae species, their complete mitochondrial genomes ranged from 15,281 to 15,570 bp in length, and all first genes started from trnM in the same direction. And base composition was biased toward A and T. Finally, both two methods (ML and BI) separately revealed that the same phylogenetic relationship of D. spp. as ((((D. punctatus + D. tabulaeformis) + D. spectabilis) + D. superans) + (D. kikuchii of Hunan population + D. houi) as in previous research, but results were different in that D. kikuchii from a Yunnan population was included, indicating that different geographical populations of insects have differentiated. And the phylogenetic relationship among Lasiocampidae species was ((((Dendrolimus) + Kunugia) + Euthrix) + Trabala). This provides a better theoretical basis for Lasiocampidae evolution and classification for future research directions.

]]>
<![CDATA[Genetic variation and phylogeographic structure of <i>Spodoptera exigua</i> in western China based on mitochondrial DNA and microsatellite markers]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_14552 The beet armyworm, Spodoptera exigua, is a significant agricultural pest of numerous crops and has caused serious economic losses in China. To effectively control this pest, we analyzed its genetic variation, population genetic structure and demographic history. We used mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) fragments of the cytochrome oxidase subunit I (COI) and eight nuclear microsatellite loci to investigate genetic diversity and population genetic structure of S. exigua populations at 14 sampling sites in western China. Both mtDNA and microsatellite data indicated low levels of genetic diversity among all populations. A moderate genetic differentiation among some S. exigua populations was detected. Neighbor-joining dendrograms, STRUCTURE, and principal coordinate analysis (PCoA) revealed two genetically distinct groups: the KEL group and the remaining population group. Isolation by distance (IBD) results showed a weak significant correlation between geographic distance and genetic differentiation. Haplotype networks, neutrality testing, and mismatch distribution analysis indicated that the beet armyworm experienced a recent rapid expansion without a recent genetic bottleneck in western China. Thus, the results of this population genetic study can help with the development of strategies for managing this highly migratory pest.

]]>
<![CDATA[Rectifying long-standing misconceptions about the ρ statistic for molecular dating]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c75ac76d5eed0c484d08825

When divided by a given mutation rate, the ρ (rho) statistic provides a simple estimator of the age of a clade within a phylogenetic tree by averaging the number of mutations from each sample in the clade to its root. However, a long-standing critique of the use of ρ in genetic dating has been quite often cited. Here we show that the critique is unfounded. We demonstrate by a formal mathematical argument and illustrate with a simulation study that ρ estimates are unbiased and also that ρ and maximum likelihood estimates do not differ in any systematic fashion. We also demonstrate that the claim that the associated confidence intervals commonly estimate the uncertainty inappropriately is flawed since it relies on a means of calculating standard errors that is not used by any other researchers, whereas an established expression for the standard error is largely unproblematic. We conclude that ρ dating, alongside approaches such as maximum likelihood (ML) and Bayesian inference, remains a useful tool for genetic dating.

]]>
<![CDATA[Secondary contact between diverged host lineages entails ecological speciation in a European hantavirus]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c76fdefd5eed0c484e5b0f1

The diversity of viruses probably exceeds biodiversity of eukaryotes, but little is known about the origin and emergence of novel virus species. Experimentation and disease outbreak investigations have allowed the characterization of rapid molecular virus adaptation. However, the processes leading to the establishment of functionally distinct virus taxa in nature remain obscure. Here, we demonstrate that incipient speciation in a natural host species has generated distinct ecological niches leading to adaptive isolation in an RNA virus. We found a very strong association between the distributions of two major phylogenetic clades in Tula orthohantavirus (TULV) and the rodent host lineages in a natural hybrid zone of the European common vole (Microtus arvalis). The spatial transition between the virus clades in replicated geographic clines is at least eight times narrower than between the hybridizing host lineages. This suggests a strong barrier for effective virus transmission despite frequent dispersal and gene flow among local host populations, and translates to a complete turnover of the adaptive background of TULV within a few hundred meters in the open, unobstructed landscape. Genetic differences between TULV clades are homogenously distributed in the genomes and mostly synonymous (93.1%), except for a cluster of nonsynonymous changes in the 5′ region of the viral envelope glycoprotein gene, potentially involved in host-driven isolation. Evolutionary relationships between TULV clades indicate an emergence of these viruses through rapid differential adaptation to the previously diverged host lineages that resulted in levels of ecological isolation exceeding the progress of speciation in their vertebrate hosts.

]]>
<![CDATA[Low-cost cross-taxon enrichment of mitochondrial DNA using in-house synthesised RNA probes]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c61e92ed5eed0c48496f93a

Hybridization capture with in-solution oligonucleotide probes has quickly become the preferred method for enriching specific DNA loci from degraded or ancient samples prior to high-throughput sequencing (HTS). Several companies synthesize sets of probes for in-solution hybridization capture, but these commercial reagents are usually expensive. Methods for economical in-house probe synthesis have been described, but they do not directly address one of the major advantages of commercially synthesised probes: that probe sequences matching many species can be synthesised in parallel and pooled. The ability to make “phylogenetically diverse” probes increases the cost-effectiveness of commercial probe sets, as they can be used across multiple projects (or for projects involving multiple species). However, it is labour-intensive to replicate this with in-house methods, as template molecules must first be generated for each species of interest. While it has been observed that probes can be used to enrich for phylogenetically distant targets, the ability of this effect to compensate for the lack of phylogenetically diverse probes in in-house synthesised probe sets has not been tested. In this study, we present a refined protocol for in-house RNA probe synthesis and evaluated the ability of probes generated using this method from a single species to successfully enrich for the target locus in phylogenetically distant species. We demonstrated that probes synthesized using long-range PCR products from a placental mammal mitochondrion (Bison spp.) could be used to enrich for mitochondrial DNA in birds and marsupials (but not plants). Importantly, our results were obtained for approximately a third of the cost of similar commercially available reagents.

]]>
<![CDATA[Medieval mummies of Zeleny Yar burial ground in the Arctic Zone of Western Siberia]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c79afdad5eed0c4841e3874

Notwithstanding the pioneering achievements of studies on arctic mummies in Siberia, there are insufficient data for any comprehensive understanding of the bio-cultural details of medieval people living in the region. In the Western Siberian arctic, permafrost mummies have been found in 12th to 13th century graves located in the Zeleny Yar (Z-Y) burial ground (66°19'4.54"С; 67°21'13.54"В). In 2013–2016, we were fortunate to be able to excavate that cemetery, locating a total of 47 burials, including cases of mummification. Some of these mummies had been wrapped in a multi-layered birch-bark cocoon. After removal of the cocoon, we conducted interdisciplinary studies using various scientific techniques. Gross anatomical examination and CT radiography showed that the internal organs were still well preserved inside the body cavities. Under light and electron microscopy, the histological findings were very similar to those for naturally mummified specimens discovered in other countries. Ancient DNA analysis showed that the Z-Y mummies’ mtDNA haplotypes belong to five different haplogroups, namely U5a (#34), H3ao (#53), D (#67–1), U4b1b1 (#67–2), and D4j8 (#68), which distinguish them for their unique combination of Western- and Eastern Siberia-specific mtDNA haplogroups. Our interdisciplinary study obtained fundamental information that will form the foundation of successful future investigations on medieval mummies found in the Western Siberian arctic.

]]>
<![CDATA[RNase H1 directs origin-specific initiation of DNA replication in human mitochondria]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c37b7b0d5eed0c48449094a

Human mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) replication is first initiated at the origin of H-strand replication. The initiation depends on RNA primers generated by transcription from an upstream promoter (LSP). Here we reconstitute this process in vitro using purified transcription and replication factors. The majority of all transcription events from LSP are prematurely terminated after ~120 nucleotides, forming stable R-loops. These nascent R-loops cannot directly prime mtDNA synthesis, but must first be processed by RNase H1 to generate 3′-ends that can be used by DNA polymerase γ to initiate DNA synthesis. Our findings are consistent with recent studies of a knockout mouse model, which demonstrated that RNase H1 is required for R-loop processing and mtDNA maintenance in vivo. Both R-loop formation and DNA replication initiation are stimulated by the mitochondrial single-stranded DNA binding protein. In an RNase H1 deficient patient cell line, the precise initiation of mtDNA replication is lost and DNA synthesis is initiated from multiple sites throughout the mitochondrial control region. In combination with previously published in vivo data, the findings presented here suggest a model, in which R-loop processing by RNase H1 directs origin-specific initiation of DNA replication in human mitochondria.

]]>
<![CDATA[Geographic patterns of mtDNA and Z-linked sequence variation in the Common Chiffchaff and the ‘chiffchaff complex’]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c390b90d5eed0c48491d417

The Common Chiffchaff Phylloscopus collybita is an abundant, polytypic Palearctic bird. Validity of some of its subspecies is controversial and birds from some parts of the species range remain unclassified taxonomically. The relationships among populations from different geographic areas have not been sufficiently explored with molecular data. In this study we analyzed the relationships among the four species in the ‘chiffchaff complex’ (Common Chiffchaff, Iberian Chiffchaff P. ibericus, Canary Islands Chiffchaff P. canariensis and Mountain Chiffchaff P. sindianus), and the patterns of intraspecific geographic variation in the mtDNA ND2 gene and intron 9 of the Z-linked aconitase gene (ACO1I9) across the Common Chiffchaff range, including a recently discovered population breeding on Mt. Hermon (Anti-Lebanon mountains). Our data supported the monophyly of the chiffchaff complex and its current systematics at the species level. Within the Common Chiffchaff, the Siberian race P. c. tristis was the most differentiated subspecies and may represent a separate or incipient species. Other Common Chiffchaff subspecies also were differentiated in their mtDNA, however, lineages of neighboring subspecies formed wide zones of introgression. The Mt. Hermon population was of mixed genetic origin but contained some birds with novel unique lineage that could not be assigned to known subspecies. All Common Chiffchaff lineages diverged at the end of the Ionian stage of Pleistocene. Lineage sorting of ACO1I9 alleles was not as complete as that of mtDNA. Chiffchaff species were mostly distinct at ACO1I9, except the Common and Canary Islands Chiffchaffs that shared multiple alleles. An AMOVA identified geographic structure in Common Chiffchaff ACO1I9 variation that was broadly consistent with that of mtDNA ND2 gene. The genetic and other data suggest the chiffchaff complex to be a group of evolutionarily young taxa that represent a paradigm of ‘species evolution in action’ from intergrading subspecies through to apparently complete biological speciation.

]]>
<![CDATA[Insights into evolving global populations of Phytophthora infestans via new complementary mtDNA haplotype markers and nuclear SSRs]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c3667f9d5eed0c4841a6bc6

In many parts of the world the damaging potato late blight pathogen, Phytophthora infestans, is spread as a succession of clonal lineages. The discrimination of genetic diversity within such evolving populations provides insights into the processes generating novel lineages and the pathways and drivers of pathogen evolution and dissemination at local and global scales. This knowledge, in turn, helps optimise management practices. Here we combine two key methods for dissecting mitochondrial and nuclear diversity and resolve intra and inter-lineage diversity of over 100 P. infestans isolates representative of key clonal lineages found globally. A novel set of PCR primers that amplify five target regions are provided for mitochondrial DNA sequence analysis. These five loci increased the number of mtDNA haplotypes resolved from four with the PCR RFLP method to 37 (17, 6, 8 and 4 for Ia, Ib, IIa, and IIb haplotypes, respectively, plus 2 Herb-1 haplotypes). As with the PCR RFLP method, two main lineages, I and II were defined. Group I contained 25 mtDNA haplotypes that grouped broadly according to the Ia and Ib types and resolved several sub-clades amongst the global sample. Group II comprised two distinct clusters with four haplotypes corresponding to the RFLP type IIb and eight haplotypes resolved within type IIa. The 12-plex SSR assay revealed 90 multilocus genotypes providing accurate discrimination of dominant clonal lineages and other genetically diverse isolates. Some association of genetic diversity and geographic region of contemporary isolates was observed; US and Mexican isolates formed a loose grouping, distinct from isolates from Europe, South America and other regions. Diversity within clonal lineages was observed that varied according to the age of the clone. In combination, these fine-scale nuclear and maternally inherited mitochondrial markers enabled a greater level of discrimination among isolates than previously available and provided complementary perspectives on evolutionary questions relating to the diversity, phylogeography and the origins and spread of clonal lineages of P. infestans.

]]>
<![CDATA[Leprosy at the edge of Europe—Biomolecular, isotopic and osteoarchaeological findings from medieval Ireland]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c2d2e50d5eed0c484d9931e

Relatively little is known of leprosy in Medieval Ireland; as an island located at the far west of Europe it has the potential to provide interesting insights in relation to the historical epidemiology of the disease. To this end the study focuses on five cases of probable leprosy identified in human skeletal remains excavated from inhumation burials. Three of the individuals derived from the cemetery of St Michael Le Pole, Golden Lane, Dublin, while single examples were also identified from Ardreigh, Co. Kildare, and St Patrick’s Church, Armoy, Co. Antrim. The individuals were radiocarbon dated and examined biomolecularly for evidence of either of the causative pathogens, M. leprae or M. lepromatosis. Oxygen and strontium isotopes were measured in tooth enamel and rib samples to determine where the individuals had spent their formative years and to ascertain if they had undertaken any recent migrations. We detected M. leprae DNA in the three Golden Lane cases but not in the probable cases from either Ardreigh Co. Kildare or Armoy, Co. Antrim. M. lepromatosis was not detected in any of the burals. DNA preservation was sufficiently robust to allow genotyping of M. leprae strains in two of the Golden Lane burials, SkCXCV (12-13th century) and SkCCXXX (11-13th century). These strains were found to belong on different lineages of the M. leprae phylogenetic tree, namely branches 3 and 2 respectively. Whole genome sequencing was also attempted on these two isolates with a view to gaining further information but poor genome coverage precluded phylogenetic analysis. Data from the biomolecular study was combined with osteological, isotopic and radiocarbon dating to provide a comprehensive and multidisciplinary study of the Irish cases. Strontium and oxygen isotopic analysis indicate that two of the individuals from Golden Lane (SkCXLVIII (10-11th century) and SkCXCV) were of Scandinavian origin, while SkCCXXX may have spent his childhood in the north of Ireland or central Britain. We propose that the Vikings were responsible for introducing leprosy to Ireland. This work adds to our knowledge of the likely origins of leprosy in Medieval Ireland and will hopefully stimulate further research into the history and spread of this ancient disease across the world.

]]>
<![CDATA[Deleterious mitochondrial DNA point mutations are overrepresented in Drosophila expressing a proofreading-defective DNA polymerase γ]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5bfc6269d5eed0c484ec8fa8

Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) mutations cause severe maternally inherited syndromes and the accumulation of somatic mtDNA mutations is implicated in aging and common diseases. However, the mechanisms that influence the frequency and pathogenicity of mtDNA mutations are poorly understood. To address this matter, we created a Drosophila mtDNA mutator strain expressing a proofreading-deficient form of the mitochondrial DNA polymerase. Mutator flies have a dramatically increased somatic mtDNA mutation frequency that correlates with the dosage of the proofreading-deficient polymerase. Mutator flies also exhibit mitochondrial dysfunction, shortened lifespan, a progressive locomotor deficit, and loss of dopaminergic neurons. Surprisingly, the frequency of nonsynonymous, pathogenic, and conserved-site mutations in mutator flies exceeded predictions of a neutral mutational model, indicating the existence of a positive selection mechanism that favors deleterious mtDNA variants. We propose from these findings that deleterious mtDNA mutations are overrepresented because they selectively evade quality control surveillance or because they are amplified through compensatory mitochondrial biogenesis.

]]>
<![CDATA[Complete mitochondrial genome of Benthodytes marianensis (Holothuroidea: Elasipodida: Psychropotidae): Insight into deep sea adaptation in the sea cucumber]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c0ae44ad5eed0c48458950b

Complete mitochondrial genomes play important roles in studying genome evolution, phylogenetic relationships, and species identification. Sea cucumbers (Holothuroidea) are ecologically important and diverse members, living from the shallow waters to the hadal trench. In this study, we present the mitochondrial genome sequence of the sea cucumber Benthodytes marianensis collected from the Mariana Trench. To our knowledge, this is the first reported mitochondrial genome from the genus Benthodytes. This complete mitochondrial genome is 17567 bp in length and consists of 13 protein-coding genes, two ribosomal RNA genes and 22 transfer RNA genes (duplication of two tRNAs: trnL and trnS). Most of these genes are coded on the positive strand except for one protein-coding gene (nad6) and five tRNA genes which are coded on the negative strand. Two putative control regions (CRs) have been found in the B. marianensis mitogenome. We compared the order of genes from the 10 available holothurian mitogenomes and found a novel gene arrangement in B. marianensis. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that B. marianensis clustered with Peniagone sp. YYH-2013, forming the deep-sea Elasipodida clade. Positive selection analysis showed that eleven residues (24 S, 45 S, 185 S, 201 G, 211 F and 313 N in nad2; 108 S, 114 S, 322 C, 400 T and 427 S in nad4) were positively selected sites with high posterior probabilities. We predict that nad2 and nad4 may be the important candidate genes for the further investigation of the adaptation of B. marianensis to the deep-sea environment.

]]>
<![CDATA[How many individuals share a mitochondrial genome?]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c16a4a2d5eed0c4844e0b84

Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) is useful to assist with identification of the source of a biological sample, or to confirm matrilineal relatedness. Although the autosomal genome is much larger, mtDNA has an advantage for forensic applications of multiple copy number per cell, allowing better recovery of sequence information from degraded samples. In addition, biological samples such as fingernails, old bones, teeth and hair have mtDNA but little or no autosomal DNA. The relatively low mutation rate of the mitochondrial genome (mitogenome) means that there can be large sets of matrilineal-related individuals sharing a common mitogenome. Here we present the mitolina simulation software that we use to describe the distribution of the number of mitogenomes in a population that match a given mitogenome, and investigate its dependence on population size and growth rate, and on a database count of the mitogenome. Further, we report on the distribution of the number of meioses separating pairs of individuals with matching mitogenome. Our results have important implications for assessing the weight of mtDNA profile evidence in forensic science, but mtDNA analysis has many non-human applications, for example in tracking the source of ivory. Our methods and software can also be used for simulations to help validate models of population history in human or non-human populations.

]]>
<![CDATA[Mitochondrial genome evolution in the Saccharomyces sensu stricto complex]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5aafccfd463d7e7f05234539

Exploring the evolutionary patterns of mitochondrial genomes is important for our understanding of the Saccharomyces sensu stricto (SSS) group, which is a model system for genomic evolution and ecological analysis. In this study, we first obtained the complete mitochondrial sequences of two important species, Saccharomyces mikatae and Saccharomyces kudriavzevii. We then compared the mitochondrial genomes in the SSS group with those of close relatives, and found that the non-coding regions evolved rapidly, including dramatic expansion of intergenic regions, fast evolution of introns and almost 20-fold higher rearrangement rates than those of the nuclear genomes. However, the coding regions, and especially the protein-coding genes, are more conserved than those in the nuclear genomes of the SSS group. The different evolutionary patterns of coding and non-coding regions in the mitochondrial and nuclear genomes may be related to the origin of the aerobic fermentation lifestyle in this group. Our analysis thus provides novel insights into the evolution of mitochondrial genomes.

]]>
<![CDATA[Multilocus Phylogeography of the Treefrog Scinax eurydice (Anura, Hylidae) Reveals a Plio-Pleistocene Diversification in the Atlantic Forest]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989dafdab0ee8fa60bc5497

We aim to evaluate the genetic structure of an Atlantic Forest amphibian species, Scinax eurydice, testing the congruence among patterns identified and proposed by the literature for Pleistocene refugia, microrefugia, and geographic barriers to gene flow such as major rivers. Furthermore, we aim to evaluate predictions of such barriers and refugia on the genetic structure of the species, such as presence/absence of dispersal, timing since separation, and population expansions/contractions. We sequenced mitochondrial and nuclear genetic markers on 94 tissue samples from 41 localities. We inferred a gene tree and estimated genetic distances using mtDNA sequences. We then ran population clustering and assignment methods, AMOVA, and estimated migration rates among populations identified through mtDNA and nDNA analyses. We used a dated species tree, skyline plots, and summary statistics to evaluate concordance between population’s distributions and geographic barriers and Pleistocene refugia. Scinax eurydice showed high mtDNA divergences and four clearly distinct mtDNA lineages. Species tree and population assignment tests supported the existence of two major clades corresponding to northeastern and southeastern Atlantic Forest in Brazil, each one composed of two other clades. Lineage splitting events occurred from late Pliocene to Pleistocene. We identified demographic expansions in two clades, and inexistent to low levels of migrations among different populations. Genetic patterns and demographic data support the existence of two northern Refuge and corroborate microrefugia south of the Doce/Jequitinhonha Rivers biogeographic divide. The results agree with a scenario of recent demographic expansion of lowland taxa. Scinax eurydice comprises a species complex, harboring undescribed taxa consistent with Pleistocene refugia. Two rivers lie at the boundaries among populations and endorse their role as secondary barriers to gene flow.

]]>
<![CDATA[Coordinated Evolution of Transcriptional and Post-Transcriptional Regulation for Mitochondrial Functions in Yeast Strains]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da31ab0ee8fa60b84923

Evolution of gene regulation has been proposed to play an important role in environmental adaptation. Exploring mechanisms underlying coordinated evolutionary changes at various levels of gene regulation could shed new light on how organism adapt in nature. In this study, we focused on regulatory differences between a laboratory Saccharomyces cerevisiae strain BY4742 and a pathogenic S. cerevisiae strain, YJM789. The two strains diverge in many features, including growth rate, morphology, high temperature tolerance, and pathogenicity. Our RNA-Seq and ribosomal footprint profiling data showed that gene expression differences are pervasive, and genes functioning in mitochondria are mostly divergent between the two strains at both transcriptional and translational levels. Combining functional genomics data from other yeast strains, we further demonstrated that significant divergence of expression for genes functioning in the electron transport chain (ETC) was likely caused by differential expression of a transcriptional factor, HAP4, and that post-transcriptional regulation mediated by an RNA-binding protein, PUF3, likely led to expression divergence for genes involved in mitochondrial translation. We also explored mito-nuclear interactions via mitochondrial DNA replacement between strains. Although the two mitochondrial genomes harbor substantial sequence divergence, neither growth nor gene expression were affected by mitochondrial DNA replacement in both fermentative and respiratory growth media, indicating compatible mitochondrial and nuclear genomes between these two strains in the tested conditions. Collectively, we used mitochondrial functions as an example to demonstrate for the first time that evolution at both transcriptional and post-transcriptional levels could lead to coordinated regulatory changes underlying strain specific functional variations.

]]>
<![CDATA[Age-Dependent Oxidative DNA Damage Does Not Correlate with Reduced Proliferation of Cardiomyocytes in Humans]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989dadeab0ee8fa60bbb137

Background

Postnatal human cardiomyocyte proliferation declines rapidly with age, which has been suggested to be correlated with increases in oxidative DNA damage in mice and plays an important role in regulating cardiomyocyte proliferation. However, the relationship between oxidative DNA damage and age in humans is unclear.

Methods

Sixty right ventricular outflow myocardial tissue specimens were obtained from ventricular septal defect infant patients during routine congenital cardiac surgery. These specimens were divided into three groups based on age: group A (age 0–6 months), group B (age, 7–12 months), and group C (>12 months). Each tissue specimen was subjected to DNA extraction, RNA extraction, and immunofluorescence.

Results

Immunofluorescence and qRT-PCR analysis revealed that DNA damage markers—mitochondrial DNA copy number, oxoguanine 8, and phosphorylated ataxia telangiectasia mutated—were highest in Group B. However immunofluorescence and qRT-PCR demonstrated that two cell proliferation markers, Ki67 and cyclin D2, were decreased with age. In addition, wheat germ agglutinin-staining indicated that the average size of cardiomyocytes increased with age.

Conclusions

Oxidative DNA damage of cardiomyocytes was not correlated positively with age in human beings. Oxidative DNA damage is unable to fully explain the reduced proliferation of human cardiomyocytes.

]]>
<![CDATA[Ancient Mitochondrial Capture as Factor Promoting Mitonuclear Discordance in Freshwater Fishes: A Case Study in the Genus Squalius (Actinopterygii, Cyprinidae) in Greece]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da1cab0ee8fa60b7d0f9

Hybridization and incomplete lineage sorting are common confounding factors in phylogeny and speciation resulting in mitonuclear disparity. Mitochondrial introgression, a particular case of hybridization, may, in extreme cases, lead to replacement of the mitochondrial genome of one species with that of another (mitochondrial capture). We investigated mitochondrial introgression involving two species of the cyprinid genus Squalius in the western Peloponnese region of Greece using molecular and morphological data. We found evidence of complete mitochondrial introgression of Squalius keadicus into two populations recognized as Squalius peloponensis from the Miras and Pamissos River basins and a divergence of mitochondrial genomes of S. keadicus from the Evrotas basin from that of the introgressed populations dating from the Pleistocene. Secondary contact among basins is a possible factor in connection of the species and the introgression event. Morphological analyses support the hypothesis of mitochondrial introgression, as S. keadicus was different from the other three populations recognized as S. peloponensis, although significant differences were found among the four populations. Isolation by geographical barriers arose during Pleistocene in the western Peloponnese were the source of the evolution of the two reciprocally monophyletic subclades found in the S. keadicus mitochondrial clade, and the morphological differences found among the four populations. Along with the lack of structure in the nuclear genome in the three populations ascribed to S. peloponensis, this suggests an incipient speciation process occurring in these Squalius species in the western Peloponnese.

]]>
<![CDATA[Generating Rho-0 Cells Using Mesenchymal Stem Cell Lines]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9fdab0ee8fa60b72d7a

Introduction

The generation of Rho-0 cells requires the use of an immortalization process, or tumor cell selection, followed by culture in the presence of ethidium bromide (EtBr), incurring the drawbacks its use entails. The purpose of this work was to generate Rho-0 cells using human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) with reagents having the ability to remove mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) more safely than by using EtBr.

Methodology

Two immortalized hMSC lines (3a6 and KP) were used; 143B.TK-Rho-0 cells were used as reference control. For generation of Rho-0 hMSCs, cells were cultured in medium supplemented with each tested reagent. Total DNA was isolated and mtDNA content was measured by real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Phenotypic characterization and gene expression assays were performed to determine whether 3a6 Rho-0 hMSCs maintain the same stem properties as untreated 3a6 hMSCs. To evaluate whether 3a6 Rho-0 hMSCs had a phenotype similar to that of 143B.TK-Rho-0 cells, in terms of reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, apoptotic levels and mitochondrial membrane potential (Δψm) were measured by flow cytometry and mitochondrial respiration was evaluated using a SeaHorse XFp Extracellular Flux Analyzer. The differentiation capacity of 3a6 and 3a6 Rho-0 hMSCs was evaluated using real-time PCR, comparing the relative expression of genes involved in osteogenesis, adipogenesis and chondrogenesis.

Results

The results showed the capacity of the 3a6 cell line to deplete its mtDNA and to survive in culture with uridine. Of all tested drugs, Stavudine (dt4) was the most effective in producing 3a6-Rho cells. The data indicate that hMSC Rho-0 cells continue to express the characteristic MSC cell surface receptor pattern. Phenotypic characterization showed that 3a6 Rho-0 cells resembled 143B.TK-Rho-0 cells, indicating that hMSC Rho-0 cells are Rho-0 cells. While the adipogenic capability was higher in 3a6 Rho-0 cells than in 3a6 cells, the osteogenic and chondrogenic capacities were lower.

Conclusion

Among the drugs and conditions tested, the use of d4t was the best option for producing Rho-0 cells from hMSCs. Rho-0 cells are useful for studying the role of mitochondria in hMSC differentiation.

]]>
<![CDATA[Towards sustainable fishery management for skates in South America: The genetic population structure of Zearaja chilensis and Dipturus trachyderma (Chondrichthyes, Rajiformes) in the south-east Pacific Ocean]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db51ab0ee8fa60bdc4c6

The longnose skates (Zearaja chilensis and Dipturus trachyderma) are the main component of the elasmobranch fisheries in the south-east Pacific Ocean. Both species are considered to be a single stock by the fishery management in Chile however, little is known about the level of demographic connectivity within the fishery. In this study, we used a genetic variation (560 bp of the control region of the mitochondrial genome and ten microsatellite loci) to explore population connectivity at five locations along the Chilean coast. Analysis of Z. chilensis populations revealed significant genetic structure among off-shore locations (San Antonio, Valdivia), two locations in the Chiloé Interior Sea (Puerto Montt and Aysén) and Punta Arenas in southern Chile. For example, mtDNA haplotype diversity was similar across off-shore locations and Punta Arenas (h = 0.46–0.50), it was significantly different to those in the Chiloé Interior Sea (h = 0.08). These results raise concerns about the long-term survival of the species within the interior sea, as population resilience will rely almost exclusively on self-recruitment. In contrast, little evidence of genetic structure was found for D. trachyderma. Our results provide evidence for three management units for Z. chilensis, and we recommend that separate management arrangements are required for each of these units. However, there is no evidence to discriminate the extant population of Dipturus trachyderma as separate management units. The lack of genetic population subdivision for D. trachyderma appears to correspond with their higher dispersal ability and more offshore habitat preference.

]]>