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Andrew Spicer, Attila Molnar
It is abundantly clear that the development of gene editing technologies, represents a potentially powerful force for good with regard to human and animal health and addressing the challenges we continue to face in a growing global population. This now includes the development of approaches to modify microalgal strains for potential improvements in productivity, robustness, harvestability, processability, nutritional composition, and application. The rapid emergence and ongoing developments in this area demand a timely review and revision of the current definitions and regulations around genetically modified organisms (GMOs), particularly within Europe...
March 6, 2018: Biology
Jonathan B L Bard
Evolutionary change comes from natural and other forms of selection acting on existing anatomical and physiological variants. While much is known about selection, little is known about the details of how genetic mutation leads to the range of heritable anatomical variants that are present within any population. This paper takes a systems-based view to explore how genomic mutation in vertebrate genomes works its way upwards, though changes to proteins, protein networks, and cell phenotypes to produce variants in anatomical detail...
February 26, 2018: Biology
Serena Lima, Conner L Webb, Evelyne Deery, Colin Robinson, Julie A Z Zedler
Dietary supplements and functional foods are becoming increasingly popular complements to regular diets. A recurring ingredient is the essential cofactor vitamin B12 (B12 ). Microalgae are making their way into the dietary supplement and functional food market but do not produce B12 , and their B12 content is very variable. In this study, the suitability of using the human B12 -binding protein intrinsic factor (IF) to enrich bioavailable B12 using microalgae was tested. The IF protein was successfully expressed from the nuclear genome of the model microalga C hlamydomonas reinhardtii and the addition of an N-terminal ARS2 signal peptide resulted in efficient IF secretion to the medium...
February 19, 2018: Biology
Rahul Vijay Kapoore, Thomas O Butler, Jagroop Pandhal, Seetharaman Vaidyanathan
The commercial reality of bioactive compounds and oil production from microalgal species is constrained by the high cost of production. Downstream processing, which includes harvesting and extraction, can account for 70-80% of the total cost of production. Consequently, from an economic perspective extraction technologies need to be improved. Microalgal cells are difficult to disrupt due to polymers within their cell wall such as algaenan and sporopollenin. Consequently, solvents and disruption devices are required to obtain products of interest from within the cells...
February 15, 2018: Biology
Peelada Cherdchukeattisak, Paul D Fraser, Saul Purton, Thanyanan Wannathong Brocklehurst
The sarcinoid alga PY02 is a newly isolated soil alga native to western Thailand. In this study PY02 is described, the carotenoid profile of the green and red forms of the algal cells are compared, and the effect of nitrogen reduction and media volume on ketocarotenoid production are reported. Partial sequences of the genes from elongation factor Tu ( tuf A) and 18S rRNA reveal that the alga is from the Chlorosarcinopsis genus. Growth studies demonstrated that Chlorosarcinopsis PY02 is capable of photoautotrophic, heterotrophic and mixotrophic growth...
February 12, 2018: Biology
John Stephen Malamon, Andres Kriete
Late-onset Alzheimer's disease (LOAD) and age are significantly correlated such that one-third of Americans beyond 85 years of age are afflicted. We have designed and implemented a pilot study that combines systems biology approaches with traditional next-generation sequencing (NGS) analysis techniques to identify relevant regulatory pathways, infer functional relationships and confirm the dysregulation of these biological pathways in LOAD. Our study design is a most comprehensive systems approach combining co-expression network modeling derived from RNA-seq data, rigorous quality control (QC) standards, functional ontology, and expression quantitative trait loci (eQTL) derived from whole exome (WES) single nucleotide variant (SNV) genotype data...
February 9, 2018: Biology
Mario Binelli, Angela Maria Gonella-Diaza, Fernando Silveira Mesquita, Claudia Maria Bertan Membrive
In cattle, the oviduct is a tubular organ that connects the ovary and the uterus. The oviduct lumen stages a dynamic set of cellular and molecular interactions to fulfill the noble role of generating a new individual. Specific anatomical niches along the oviduct lumen provide the appropriate microenvironment for final sperm capacitation, oocyte capture and fertilization, and early embryo development and transport. To accomplish such complex tasks, the oviduct undergoes spatially and temporally-regulated morphological, biochemical, and physiological changes that are associated with endocrine events of the estrous cycle...
February 2, 2018: Biology
Yanan Xu, Iskander M Ibrahim, Chiziezi I Wosu, Ami Ben-Amotz, Patricia J Harvey
The halotolerant microalga Dunaliella salina has been widely studied for natural β-carotene production. This work shows biochemical characterization of three newly isolated Dunaliellasalina strains, DF15, DF17, and DF40, compared with D. salina CCAP 19/30 and D. salina UTEX 2538 (also known as D. bardawil). Although all three new strains have been genetically characterized as Dunaliella salina strains, their ability to accumulate carotenoids and their capacity for photoprotection against high light stress are different...
February 1, 2018: Biology
Michael H Ferkin
This paper details how chemical communication is affected by ecological challenges such as finding mates. I list several conditions that affect the decision to attract mates, the decision to respond to the signals of potential mates and how the response depends on context. These mate-choice decisions and their outcomes will depend on the life history constraints placed on individuals such as their fecundity, sex, lifespan, opportunities to mate in the future and age at senescence. Consequently, the sender's decision to scent mark or self-groom as well as the receiver's choice of response represents a tradeoff between the current costs of the participant's own survival and future reproduction against that of reproducing now...
January 25, 2018: Biology
Elyssia Mayhead, Alla Silkina, Carole A Llewellyn, Claudio Fuentes-Grünewald
The nutrient removal efficiency of Chlorella vulgaris cultivated in domestic wastewater was investigated, along with the potential to use membrane filtration as a pre-treatment tool during the wastewater treatment process. Chlorella vulgaris was batch cultivated for 12 days in a bubble column system with two different wastewater treatments. Maximum uptake of 94.18% ammonium (NH₄-N) and 97.69% ortho-phosphate (PO₄-P) occurred in 0.2 μm membrane filtered primary wastewater. Membrane filtration enhanced the nutrient uptake performance of C...
January 19, 2018: Biology
Dario Siniscalco, Maria Consiglia Trotta, Anna Lisa Brigida, Rosa Maisto, Margherita Luongo, Franca Ferraraccio, Michele D'Amico, Clara Di Filippo
Background: The rat model of streptozotocin (STZ)-induced pancreatic damage was used to examine whether a systemic oxygen/ozone mixture could be beneficial for the pancreas by reducing the machinery of the local detrimental mediators released by STZ. Results: The results showed that oxygen/ozone administration (150 µg/Kg i.p.) for ten days in STZ rats increased the endogenous glutathione-s-transferase (GST) enzyme and nuclear factor-erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) into the pancreatic tissue, together with reduction of 4-hydroxynonenal (4-HNE) and PARP-1 compared to STZ rats receiving O₂ only...
January 11, 2018: Biology
Hidetomo Iwano, Yusuke Inoue, Takuji Takasago, Hironori Kobayashi, Takaaki Furusawa, Kotomi Taniguchi, Jumpei Fujiki, Hiroshi Yokota, Masaru Usui, Yasunori Tanji, Katsuro Hagiwara, Hidetoshi Higuchi, Yutaka Tamura
Bovine mastitis is an inflammation of the mammary gland caused by bacterial infection in dairy cattle. It is the most costly disease in the dairy industry because of the high use of antibiotics. Staphylococcus aureus is one of the major causative agents of bovine mastitis and antimicrobial resistance. Therefore, new strategies to control bacterial infection are required in the dairy industry. One potential strategy is bacteriophage (phage) therapy. In the present study, we examined the host range of previously isolated S...
January 9, 2018: Biology
Elena Chaves-Pozo, Alfonsa García-Ayala, Isabel Cabas
In vertebrates, in addition to their classically reproductive functions, steroids regulate the immune system. This action is possible mainly due to the presence of steroid receptors in the different immune cell types. Much evidence suggests that the immune system of fish is vulnerable to xenosteroids, which are ubiquitous in the aquatic environment. In vivo and in vitro assays have amply demonstrated that oestrogens interfere with both the innate and the adaptive immune system of fish by regulating the main leukocyte activities and transcriptional genes...
January 9, 2018: Biology
Kana Tanizawa, Sayuri Uchida, Eri Kurihara, Takuya Umehara, Koji Tamura
R3C ligase ribozyme catalyzes the nucleophilic attack by a 3'-hydroxyl on a 5'-α-phosphorus of triphosphates to form a 3'-5'-phosphodiester bond. In the present study, although the truncation of R3C ribozyme was accompanied by a large reduction in ligation activity (decrease by two orders of magnitude compared to that of the ligated product of full-length R3C ribozyme after 18.5 h at 23 °C), the introduction of complementary seven-membered kissing-loops served as a "switch" to reactivate the truncated R3C ribozyme with approximately one-fifth of the activity of the full-length R3C ribozyme...
January 9, 2018: Biology
Stefan Nowak, Johannes Neidhart, Ivan G Szendro, Jonas Rzezonka, Rahul Marathe, Joachim Krug
A long-standing problem in ageing research is to understand how different factors contributing to longevity should be expected to act in combination under the assumption that they are independent. Standard interaction analysis compares the extension of mean lifespan achieved by a combination of interventions to the prediction under an additive or multiplicative null model, but neither model is fundamentally justified. Moreover, the target of longevity interventions is not mean life span but the entire survival curve...
January 6, 2018: Biology
Vinit Shanbhag, Shrikesh Sachdev, Jacqueline A Flores, Mukund J Modak, Kamalendra Singh
DNA polymerases are essential for genome replication, DNA repair and translesion DNA synthesis (TLS). Broadly, these enzymes belong to two groups: replicative and non-replicative DNA polymerases. A considerable body of data suggests that both groups of DNA polymerases are associated with cancer. Many mutations in cancer cells are either the result of error-prone DNA synthesis by non-replicative polymerases, or the inability of replicative DNA polymerases to proofread mismatched nucleotides due to mutations in 3'-5' exonuclease activity...
January 2, 2018: Biology
Jagroop Pandhal, Wai L Choon, Rahul V Kapoore, David A Russo, James Hanotu, I A Grant Wilson, Pratik Desai, Malcolm Bailey, William J Zimmerman, Andrew S Ferguson
A laboratory based microflotation rig termed efficient FLOtation of Algae Technology (eFLOAT) was used to optimise parameters for harvesting microalgal biomass from eutrophic water systems. This was performed for the dual objectives of remediation (nutrient removal) and resource recovery. Preliminary experiments demonstrated that chitosan was more efficient than alum for flocculation of biomass and the presence of bacteria could play a positive role and reduce flocculant application rates under the natural conditions tested...
December 29, 2017: Biology
Thomas O Butler, Gordon J McDougall, Raymond Campbell, Michele S Stanley, John G Day
Astaxanthin from Haematococcus pluvialis is commercially produced in a two-stage process, involving green vegetative (macrozooid) and red aplanospore stages. This approach has been scaled up to an industrial process but constraints limit its commercial success and profitability, including: contamination issues, high pigment extraction costs, requirements for high light levels and photo-bleaching in the red stage. However, in addition to the aplanospore stage, this alga can produce astaxanthin in vegetative palmelloid and motile macrozooid cells...
December 26, 2017: Biology
Monica Coll, Alexandra Pérez-Serra, Jesus Mates, Bernat Del Olmo, Marta Puigmulé, Anna Fernandez-Falgueras, Anna Iglesias, Ferran Picó, Laura Lopez, Ramon Brugada, Oscar Campuzano
Sudden cardiac death is defined as an unexpected decease of cardiac origin. In individuals under 35 years old, most of these deaths are due to familial arrhythmogenic syndromes of genetic origin, also known as channelopathies. These familial cardiac syndromes commonly follow an autosomal dominant pattern of inheritance. Diagnosis, however, can be difficult, mainly due to incomplete penetrance and variable expressivity, which are hallmarks in these syndromes. The clinical manifestation of these diseases can range from asymptomatic to syncope but sudden death can sometimes be the first symptom of disease...
December 26, 2017: Biology
Javier Apfeld, Walter Fontana
It is often assumed, but not established, that the major neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson's disease, are not just age-dependent (their incidence changes with time) but actually aging-dependent (their incidence is coupled to the process that determines lifespan). To determine a dependence on the aging process requires the joint probability distribution of disease onset and lifespan. For human Parkinson's disease, such a joint distribution is not available, because the disease cuts lifespan short...
December 23, 2017: Biology
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