30,424 research outputs found

    Transcriptome sequencing reveals the effects of circRNA on testicular development and spermatogenesis in Qianbei Ma goats

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    Circular RNAs (circRNAs) play an important role in regulating the mammalian reproductive system, especially testicular development and spermatogenesis. However, their functions in testicular development and spermatogenesis in the Qianbei Ma goat, the Guizhou endemic breed are still unclear. In this study, tissue sectioning and circRNAs transcriptome analysis were conducted to compare the changes of morphology and circular RNAs gene expression profile at four different developmental stages (0Y, 0-month-old; 6Y, 6-month-old; 12Y, 12-month-old; 18Y, 18-month-old). The results showed that the circumferences and area of the seminiferous tubule gradually increased with age, and the lumen of the seminiferous tubule in the testis differentiated significantly. 12,784 circRNAs were detected from testicular tissues at four different developmental stages by RNA sequencing, and 8,140 DEcircRNAs (differentially expressed circRNAs) were found in 0Y vs. 6Y, 6Y vs. 12Y, 12Y vs. 18Y and 0Y vs. 18Y, 0Y vs. 12Y, 6Y vs. 18Y Functional enrichment analysis of the source genes showed that they were mainly enriched in testicular development and spermatogenesis. In addition, the miRNAs and mRNAs associated with DECircRNAs in 6 control groups were predicted by bioinformatics, and 81 highly expressed DECircRNAs and their associated miRNAs and mRNAs were selected to construct the ceRNA network. Through functional enrichment analysis of the target genes of circRNAs in the network, some candidate circRNAs related to testicular development and spermatogenesis were obtained. Such as circRNA_07172, circRNA_04859, circRNA_07832, circRNA_00032 and circRNA_07510. These results will help to reveal the mechanism of circRNAs in testicular development and spermatogenesis, and also provide some guidance for goat reproduction

    Multiple functions and regulatory network of miR-150 in B lymphocyte-related diseases

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    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) play vital roles in the post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression. Previous studies have shown that miR-150 is a crucial regulator of B cell proliferation, differentiation, metabolism, and apoptosis. miR-150 regulates the immune homeostasis during the development of obesity and is aberrantly expressed in multiple B-cell-related malignant tumors. Additionally, the altered expression of MIR-150 is a diagnostic biomarker of various autoimmune diseases. Furthermore, exosome-derived miR-150 is considered as prognostic tool in B cell lymphoma, autoimmune diseases and immune-mediated disorders, suggesting miR-150 plays a vital role in disease onset and progression. In this review, we summarized the miR-150-dependent regulation of B cell function in B cell-related immune diseases

    Protein quality control and aggregation in the endoplasmic reticulum: From basic to bedside

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    Endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is the largest membrane-bound compartment in all cells and functions as a key regulator in protein biosynthesis, lipid metabolism, and calcium balance. Mammalian endoplasmic reticulum has evolved with an orchestrated protein quality control system to handle defective proteins and ensure endoplasmic reticulum homeostasis. Nevertheless, the accumulation and aggregation of misfolded proteins in the endoplasmic reticulum may occur during pathological conditions. The inability of endoplasmic reticulum quality control system to clear faulty proteins and aggregates from the endoplasmic reticulum results in the development of many human disorders. The efforts to comprehensively understand endoplasmic reticulum quality control network and protein aggregation will benefit the diagnostics and therapeutics of endoplasmic reticulum storage diseases. Herein, we overview recent advances in mammalian endoplasmic reticulum protein quality control system, describe protein phase transition model, and summarize the approaches to monitor protein aggregation. Moreover, we discuss the therapeutic applications of enhancing endoplasmic reticulum protein quality control pathways in endoplasmic reticulum storage diseases

    OLIG2 neural progenitor cell development and fate in Down syndrome

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    Down syndrome (DS) is caused by triplication of human chromosome 21 (HSA21) and is the most common genetic form of intellectual disability. It is unknown precisely how triplication of HSA21 results in the intellectual disability, but it is thought that the global transcriptional dysregulation caused by trisomy 21 perturbs multiple aspects of neurodevelopment that cumulatively contribute to its etiology. While the characteristics associated with DS can arise from any of the genes triplicated on HSA21, in this work we focus on oligodendrocyte transcription factor 2 (OLIG2). The progeny of neural progenitor cells (NPCs) expressing OLIG2 are likely to be involved in many of the cellular changes underlying the intellectual disability in DS. To explore the fate of OLIG2+ neural progenitors, we took advantage of two distinct models of DS, the Ts65Dn mouse model and induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) derived from individuals with DS. Our results from these two systems identified multiple perturbations in development in the cellular progeny of OLIG2+ NPCs. In Ts65Dn, we identified alterations in neurons and glia derived from the OLIG2 expressing progenitor domain in the ventral spinal cord. There were significant differences in the number of motor neurons and interneurons present in the trisomic lumbar spinal cord depending on age of the animal pointing both to a neurodevelopment and a neurodegeneration phenotype in the Ts65Dn mice. Of particular note, we identified changes in oligodendrocyte (OL) maturation in the trisomic mice that are dependent on spatial location and developmental origin. In the dorsal corticospinal tract, there were significantly fewer mature OLs in the trisomic mice, and in the lateral funiculus we observed the opposite phenotype with more mature OLs being present in the trisomic animals. We then transitioned our studies into iPSCs where we were able to pattern OLIG2+ NPCs to either a spinal cord-like or a brain-like identity and study the OL lineage that differentiated from each progenitor pool. Similar to the region-specific dysregulation found in the Ts65Dn spinal cord, we identified perturbations in trisomic OLs that were dependent on whether the NPCs had been patterned to a brain-like or spinal cord-like fate. In the spinal cord-like NPCs, there was no difference in the proportion of cells expressing either OLIG2 or NKX2.2, the two transcription factors whose co-expression is essential for OL differentiation. Conversely, in the brain-like NPCs, there was a significant increase in OLIG2+ cells in the trisomic culture and a decrease in NKX2.2 mRNA expression. We identified a sonic hedgehog (SHH) signaling based mechanism underlying these changes in OLIG2 and NKX2.2 expression in the brain-like NPCs and normalized the proportion of trisomic cells expressing the transcription factors to euploid levels by modulating the activity of the SHH pathway. Finally, we continued the differentiation of the brain-like and spinal cord-like NPCs to committed OL precursor cells (OPCs) and allowed them to mature. We identified an increase in OPC production in the spinal cord-like trisomic culture which was not present in the brain-like OPCs. Conversely, we identified a maturation deficit in the brain-like trisomic OLs that was not present in the spinal cord-like OPCs. These results underscore the importance of regional patterning in characterizing changes in cell differentiation and fate in DS. Together, the findings presented in this work contribute to the understanding of the cellular and molecular etiology of the intellectual disability in DS and in particular the contribution of cells differentiated from OLIG2+ progenitors

    Reprogramming viral immune evasion for a rational design of next-generation vaccines for RNA viruses

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    Type I interferons (IFNs-α/β) are antiviral cytokines that constitute the innate immunity of hosts to fight against viral infections. Recent studies, however, have revealed the pleiotropic functions of IFNs, in addition to their antiviral activities, for the priming of activation and maturation of adaptive immunity. In turn, many viruses have developed various strategies to counteract the IFN response and to evade the host immune system for their benefits. The inefficient innate immunity and delayed adaptive response fail to clear of invading viruses and negatively affect the efficacy of vaccines. A better understanding of evasion strategies will provide opportunities to revert the viral IFN antagonism. Furthermore, IFN antagonism-deficient viruses can be generated by reverse genetics technology. Such viruses can potentially serve as next-generation vaccines that can induce effective and broad-spectrum responses for both innate and adaptive immunities for various pathogens. This review describes the recent advances in developing IFN antagonism-deficient viruses, their immune evasion and attenuated phenotypes in natural host animal species, and future potential as veterinary vaccines

    Epigenetics : a catalyst of plant immunity against pathogens

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    The plant immune system protects against pests and diseases. The recognition of stress-related molecular patterns triggers localised immune responses, which are often followed by longer-lasting systemic priming and/or up-regulation of defences. In some cases, this induced resistance (IR) can be transmitted to following generations. Such transgenerational IR is gradually reversed in the absence of stress at a rate that is proportional to the severity of disease experienced in previous generations. This review outlines the mechanisms by which epigenetic responses to pathogen infection shape the plant immune system across expanding time scales. We review the cis- and trans-acting mechanisms by which stress-inducible epigenetic changes at transposable elements (TEs) regulate genome-wide defence gene expression and draw particular attention to one regulatory model that is supported by recent evidence about the function of AGO1 and H2A.Z in transcriptional control of defence genes. Additionally, we explore how stress-induced mobilisation of epigenetically controlled TEs acts as a catalyst of Darwinian evolution by generating (epi)genetic diversity at environmentally responsive genes. This raises questions about the long-term evolutionary consequences of stress-induced diversification of the plant immune system in relation to the long-held dichotomy between Darwinian and Lamarckian evolution

    RNA pull-down-confocal nanoscanning (RP-CONA), a novel method for studying RNA/protein interactions in cell extracts that detected potential drugs for Parkinson’s disease targeting RNA/HuR complexes

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    MicroRNAs (miRNAs, miRs) are a class of small non-coding RNAs that regulate gene expression through specific base-pair targeting. The functional mature miRNAs usually undergo a two-step cleavage from primary miRNAs (pri-miRs), then precursor miRNAs (pre-miRs). The biogenesis of miRNAs is tightly controlled by different RNA-binding proteins (RBPs). The dysregulation of miRNAs is closely related to a plethora of diseases. Targeting miRNA biogenesis is becoming a promising therapeutic strategy. HuR and MSI2 are both RBPs. MiR-7 is post-transcriptionally inhibited by the HuR/MSI2 complex, through a direct interaction between HuR and the conserved terminal loop (CTL) of pri-miR-7-1. Small molecules dissociating pri-miR-7/HuR interaction may induce miR-7 production. Importantly, the miR-7 levels are negatively correlated with Parkinson’s disease (PD). PD is a common, incurable neurodegenerative disease causing serious motor deficits. A hallmark of PD is the presence of Lewy bodies in the human brain, which are inclusion bodies mainly composed of an aberrantly aggregated protein named α-synuclein (α-syn). Decreasing α-syn levels or preventing α-syn aggregation are under investigation as PD treatments. Notably, α-syn is negatively regulated by several miRNAs, including miR-7, miR-153, miR-133b and others. One hypothesis is that elevating these miRNA levels can inhibit α-syn expression and ameliorate PD pathologies. In this project, we identified miR-7 as the most effective α-syn inhibitor, among the miRNAs that are downregulated in PD, and with α-syn targeting potentials. We also observed potential post-transcriptional inhibition on miR-153 biogenesis in neuroblastoma, which may help to uncover novel therapeutic targets towards PD. To identify miR-7 inducers that benefit PD treatment by repressing α-syn expression, we developed a novel technique RNA Pull-down Confocal Nanoscaning (RP-CONA) to monitor the binding events between pri-miR-7 and HuR. By attaching FITC-pri-miR-7-1-CTL-biotin to streptavidin-coated agarose beads and incubating them in human cultured cell lysates containing overexpressed mCherry-HuR, the bound RNA and protein can be visualised as quantifiable fluorescent rings in corresponding channels in a confocal high-content image system. A pri-miR-7/HuR inhibitor can decrease the relative mCherry/FITC intensity ratio in RP-CONA. With this technique, we performed several small-scale screenings and identified that a bioflavonoid, quercetin can largely dissociate the pri-miR-7/HuR interaction. Further studies proved that quercetin was an effective miR-7 inducer as well as α-syn inhibitor in HeLa cells. To understand the mechanism of quercetin mediated α-syn inhibition, we tested the effects of quercetin treatment with miR-7-1 and HuR knockout HeLa cells. We found that HuR was essential in this pathway, while miR-7 hardly contributed to the α-syn inhibition. HuR can directly bind an AU-rich element (ARE) at the 3’ untranslated region (3’-UTR) of α-syn mRNA and promote translation. We believe quercetin mainly disrupts the ARE/HuR interaction and disables the HuR-induced α-syn expression. In conclusion, we developed and optimised RP-CONA, an on-bead, lysate-based technique detecting RNA/protein interactions, as well as identifying RNA/protein modulators. With RP-CONA, we found quercetin inducing miR-7 biogenesis, and inhibiting α-syn expression. With these beneficial effects, quercetin has great potential to be applied in the clinic of PD treatment. Finally, RP-CONA can be used in many other RNA/protein interactions studies

    Proof of Concept of Therapeutic Gene Modulation of MBNL1/2 in Myotonic Dystrophy

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    La distrofia miotónica tipo 1 es una enfermedad genética rara multisistémica que afecta a 1 de cada 3000-8000 personas. La causa molecular de la enfermedad proviene de repeticiones tóxicas “CTG” en el gen DMPK (DM Protein Kinase). Tras la transcripción, estas repeticiones forman una estructura de horquilla que se une con alta afinidad a la familia de proteínas MBNL (Muscleblind-like) que agota su función de regulación de la poliadenilación y el splicing alternativo postranscripcional en numerosos transcritos. La pérdida de función de MBNL provoca una cascada de efectos posteriores, que eventualmente conducen a síntomas clínicos que incluyen miotonía, debilidad y atrofia muscular, cataratas, disfunción cardíaca y trastorno cognitivo. La restauración de la función de la proteína MBNL es clave para aliviar los síntomas debilitantes de esta enfermedad. Se han utilizado oligonucleótidos antisentido (AON) para apuntar a las repeticiones de DMPK y liberar MBNL del secuestro, lo que da como resultado resultados terapéuticos prometedores en modelos celulares y animales de la enfermedad. Otro factor que interviene en la pérdida de función de las proteínas MBNL son los miRNAs que regulan su traducción. Aquí se muestra el uso de AON dirigidos a la actividad de miR-23b y miR-218, que se ha demostrado previamente que regulan directamente MBNL1 y MBNL2. Estos antimiRs recibieron modificaciones FANA para aumentar su entrega en las células y reducir la toxicidad. También se probaron los AON, denominados blockmiRs, que se unen de manera complementaria a los sitios de unión confirmados de miR-23b y miR-218 en los 3'-UTR de las transcripciones de MBNL1 y MBNL2. De esta manera, los miRNAs no pueden unirse y regular la traducción de MBNL, lo que aumenta la cantidad de proteína MBNL producida en una célula deficiente. Aquí se propone el uso de AON de nuevo diseño dirigidos a la actividad de miR-23b y miR-218 para regular MBNL1 y MBNL2 a través de (1) exploración del bloqueo de miRNA a través de FANA-antimiR AON in vitro, (2) exploración del bloqueo del sitio de unión de miRNA a través de la estrategia blockmiR in vitro e in vivo con el uso de modificaciones químicas de LNA, y (3) mejora de la química de la estrategia blockmiR mediante el uso de tecnología de péptidos de penetración celular in vitro e in vivo.Myotonic Dystrophy Type 1 is a multi-systemic rare genetic disease affecting 1 in 3000-8000 people. The molecular cause of the disease stems from toxic “CTG” repetitions in the DMPK (DM Protein Kinase) gene. Upon transcription, these repetitions form a hairpin structure that binds with high affinity to the MBNL (Muscleblind-like) family of proteins depleting their function of post-transcriptional alternative splicing and polyadenylation regulation on numerous transcripts. MBNL loss-of-function causes a cascade of downstream effects, which eventually lead to clinical symptoms including myotonia, muscle weakness and atrophy, cataracts, cardiac dysfunction, and cognitive disorder. The restoration of MBNL protein function is key to relieving the debilitating symptoms of this disease. Antisense oligonucleotides (AONs) have been used to target the DMPK repeats and release MBNL from sequestration resulting in promising therapeutic results in cellular and animal models of the disease. Another factor playing a role in the loss-of-function of MBNL proteins are the miRNAs that regulate their translation. Here is shown the use of AONs targeting miR-23b and miR-218 activity, which have been previously shown to directly regulate MBNL1 and MBNL2. These antimiRs were given FANA modifications to increase their delivery in cells and lower toxicity. Also tested are AONs, termed blockmiRs, that complementary bind to the confirmed binding sites of miR-23b and miR-218 in the 3’-UTRs of MBNL1 and MBNL2 transcripts. In this way, the miRNAs are unable to bind and regulate the translation of MBNL thereby augmenting the amount of MBNL protein made in an otherwise deficient cell. Proposed here is the use of newly designed AONs targeting miR-23b and miR-218 activity in order to regulate MBNL1 and MBNL2 through (1) exploration of miRNA blocking through FANA-antimiR AONs in vitro, (2) exploration of miRNA binding site blocking through blockmiR strategy in vitro and in vivo with the use of LNA chemical modifications, and (3) improvement of the chemistry of the blockmiR strategy through the use of cell penetrating peptide technology in vitro and in vivo

    Innate immunity and metabolism in the bovine ovarian follicle

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    Postpartum uterine disease in dairy cows is associated with reduced fertility. One of the first and most prevalent bacteria associated with uterine disease is Escherichia coli. The bacterial endotoxin, lipopolysaccharide (LPS), accumulates in the ovarian follicular fluid of animals with uterine disease. The granulosa cells of the ovarian follicle respond to LPS by secreting pro-inflammatory cytokines, such as interleukin (IL)-1a, IL-1b and IL-8, and oocyte health is perturbed. Dairy cows also experience metabolic energy stress in the postpartum period, which is associated with an increased risk of developing uterine disease and ovarian dysfunction. This thesis explored the crosstalk between innate immunity and metabolic energy stress in bovine granulosa cells and cumulus-oocyte complex. Firstly, we found that glycolysis, AMP-activated protein kinase and the mechanistic target of rapamycin, regulate the innate immune responses to LPS in granulosa cells isolated from bovine ovarian follicles. Activation of AMP-activated protein kinase decreased the LPS-induced secretion of IL-1a, IL-1b, and IL8, and was associated with shortened duration of ERK1/2 and JNK phosphorylation. Next, we found that decreasing the availability of cholesterol or inhibiting cholesterol biosynthesis using short-interfering RNA impaired the LPS-induced secretion of IL-1a and IL-1b by granulosa cells. Furthermore, metabolic energy stress or inhibiting cholesterol biosynthesis in the bovine cumulus-oocyte complex modulated the innate immune responses to LPS, and perturbed meiotic progression during in vitro maturation. Finally, we explored an in vivo model of uterine disease in heifers, using RNAseq to investigate alterations to the transcriptome of the reproductive tract. We found that uterine disease altered the transcriptome of the endometrium, oviduct, granulosa cells and oocyte, several months after bacterial infusion; these changes were most evident in the granulosa cells and oocyte of the ovarian follicle. The findings from this thesis imply that there is crosstalk between innate immunity and metabolism in the bovine ovarian follicle

    MicroRNAs as Future Treatment Tools and Diagnostic Biomarkers in Alzheimer’s Disease

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    Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disorder and is considered to be the most common form of dementia. This disorder is characterized by the formation of amyloid β (Aβ) plaques, neurofibrillary tangles, and alterations in synaptic function, all of which cause memory loss and behavioral disturbances. Despite the high prevalence of AD, effective therapeutic and diagnostic tools remain unavailable. MicroRNAs (miRNAs, miRs) are regulatory non-coding RNAs that target mRNAs. MiRNAs are involved in the regulation of the expressions of APP and BACE1, Aβ clearance, and the formation of neuro-fibrillary tangles. Furthermore, there are evidences that show alteration in the expression of several miRs in AD. MicroRNA is emerging as a biomarker because they have high specificity and, efficiency, and can be detected in biological fluids such as cerebrospinal fluid, tear, urine, blood. Moreover, miRNAs may be acquired and measured easily by utilizing real-time PCR, next-generation sequencing, or microarray. These techniques are cost-effective in comparison with imaging techniques such as magnetic resonance imaging, positron emission tomography. These features make miRNAs viable therapeutic as well as diagnostic tools in the treatment of AD. This review covers the regulatory function of miRNAs in AD, as well as their prospective applications as diagnostic biomarkers
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