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Wojciech Rosikiewicz, Izabela Makałowska
Natural antisense transcripts (NATs) are RNA molecules that originate from opposite DNA strands of the same genomic locus (cis-NAT) or unlinked genomic loci (trans-NAT). NATs may play various regulatory functions at the transcriptional level via transcriptional interference. NATs may also regulate gene expression levels post-transcriptionally via induction of epigenetic changes or double-stranded RNA formation, which may lead to endogenous RNA interference, RNA editing or RNA masking. The true biological significance of the natural antisense transcripts remains controversial despite many years of research...
October 21, 2016: Acta Biochimica Polonica
Hilde de Kluiver, Jacobine E Buizer-Voskamp, Conor V Dolan, Dorret I Boomsma
We review the hypotheses concerning the association between the paternal age at childbearing and childhood psychiatric disorders (autism spectrum- and attention deficit/hyperactive disorder) and adult disorders (schizophrenia, bipolar-, obsessive-compulsive-, and major depressive disorder) based on epidemiological studies. Several hypotheses have been proposed to explain the paternal age effect. We discuss the four main-not mutually exclusive-hypotheses. These are the de novo mutation hypothesis, the hypothesis concerning epigenetic alterations, the selection into late fatherhood hypothesis, and the environmental resource hypothesis...
October 22, 2016: American Journal of Medical Genetics. Part B, Neuropsychiatric Genetics
Man Liu, Jingying Zhou, Zhiwei Chen, Alfred Sze-Lok Cheng
The tumour microenvironment plays an instrumental role in cancer development, progression and treatment response/resistance. Accumulating evidence underscores the fundamental importance of epigenetic regulation in tumour immune evasion. Following many pioneering discoveries demonstrating malignant transformation through epigenetic anomalies ("epimutations"), there is also growing emphasis on elucidating aberrant epigenetic mechanisms that reprogramme the milieu of tumour-associated immune and stromal cells toward an immunosuppressive state...
October 22, 2016: Journal of Pathology
Christian Parisod
Taking transposable elements into consideration in surveys of genetic and epigenetic variation remains challenging in species lacking a high-quality reference genome. Here, molecular techniques reducing genome complexity and specifically targeting restructuring and methylation changes in TE genome fractions are described. In particular, methyl-sensitive transposon display (MSTD) uses isoschizomers and PCR amplifications to assess the methylation environment of TE insertions. MSTD offers reliable insights into genome-wide epigenetic changes associated with TEs, especially when used together with similar techniques tracking random sequences...
2017: Methods in Molecular Biology
Andriy Bilichak, Igor Kovalchuk
Virus-induced gene silencing (VIGS) is a powerful epigenetic tool that allows in a relatively short period of time to down-regulate the expression of an endogenous gene in infected plants for either monitoring the resulting phenotype or enhancing/modifying a particular trait associated with the gene. Here, we describe the utilization of Tobacco rattle virus (TRV) as a vector for the VIGS technique in Arabidopsis plants. The unique ability of TRV to infect both somatic tissues and gametes allows deciphering the role of genes in these tissues simultaneously...
2017: Methods in Molecular Biology
Andriy Bilichak, Andrey Golubov, Igor Kovalchuk
The discovery of small RNAs in plants and animals almost two decades ago attracted a significant interest towards epigenetic regulation of gene expression and the practical implementation of the gained knowledge in applied studies. New and sometimes unexpected functions have been ascribed to sRNAs almost every couple of years since their discovery, hence indicating that the complete role of sRNAs in plant and animal physiology is still barely understood. Next-generation sequencing technologies allow to generate high-resolution profiles of sRNAs for the consequent analysis and possibly to discover novel functions of sRNAs...
2017: Methods in Molecular Biology
Martine Boccara, Alexis Sarazin, Bernard Billoud, Agnes Bulski, Louise Chapell, David Baulcombe, Vincent Colot
Epigenetic response to stress in plants involves changes in DNA methylation, histone modifications, and expression of small noncoding RNAs (sRNA). Here we present the method of analysis of differential expression of sRNA populations using DNA tiling arrays. sRNA extracted from Arabidopsis thaliana plants exposed to pathogen elicitor or control plants were reverse-transcribed into cDNAs, and subsequently hybridized after labeling to a custom-made DNA tiling array covering Arabidopsis chromosome 4. We first designed a control experiment with eight cDNA clones corresponding to sequences located on chromosome 4 and obtained robust and specific hybridization signals...
2017: Methods in Molecular Biology
Pavlina Sasheva, Ueli Grossniklaus
Over the last years, it has become increasingly clear that environmental influences can affect the epigenomic landscape and that some epigenetic variants can have heritable, phenotypic effects. While there are a variety of methods to perform genome-wide analyses of DNA methylation in model organisms, this is still a challenging task for non-model organisms without a reference genome. Differentially methylated region-representational difference analysis (DMR-RDA) is a sensitive and powerful PCR-based technique that isolates DNA fragments that are differentially methylated between two otherwise identical genomes...
2017: Methods in Molecular Biology
Andrey Golubov, Igor Kovalchuk
Hydroxymethylcytosine (hmC or 5-hmC) is a nitrogen base occurring as a result of cytosine methylation followed by replacing a methyl group with a hydroxyl group through active oxidation. 5-hmC is considered to be one of the forms of epigenetic modification and is suggested as an intermediate step in a semi-active loss of DNA methylation mark. 5-hmC plays an important role in the epigenetic regulation of gene expression in animals, although its role in plants remains controversial. Here, we present a colorimetric method of quantification of 5-hmC using Brassica rapa DNA...
2017: Methods in Molecular Biology
Palak Kathiria, Igor Kovalchuk
Epigenetic regulation in the plant genome is associated with the determination of expression patterns of various genes. Methylation of DNA at cytosine residues is one of the mechanisms of epigenetic regulation and has been a subject of various studies. Various techniques have been developed to analyze DNA methylation, most of which involve isolation of chromatin from cells and further in vitro studies. Limited techniques are available for in situ study of DNA methylation in plants. Here, we present such an in situ method for DNA methylation analysis which has high sensitivity and good reproducibility...
2017: Methods in Molecular Biology
Andriy Bilichak, Igor Kovalchuk
DNA methylation is a heritable but reversible epigenetic mechanism of control over gene expression. The level of DNA methylation of specific genomic regions correlates with chromatin condensation, the level of gene expression, and in some cases genome stability and the frequency of homologous recombination. Here, we describe the combined bisulfite restriction analysis (COBRA) assay that allows analyzing the methylation status at a specific locus. The protocol consists of the following major steps: bisulfite conversion of non-methylated cytosines to uracils, the locus-specific PCR amplification of converted DNA, restriction digestion, the analysis of restriction patterns on the gel, and the quantification of these restriction patterns using ImageJ or a similar program...
2017: Methods in Molecular Biology
Sara Hernández-Castellano, Geovanny I Nic-Can, Clelia De-la-Peña
Among the epigenetic mechanisms studied with a greater interest in the last decade are the microRNAs (miRNAs). These small noncoding RNA sequences that are approximately 17-22 nucleotides in length play an essential role in many biological processes of various organisms, including plants. The analysis of spatiotemporal expression of miRNAs provides a better understanding of the role of these small molecules in plant development, cell differentiation, and other processes; but such analysis is also an important method for the validation of biological functions...
2017: Methods in Molecular Biology
Stefan Grob, Ueli Grossniklaus
Nuclear organization and higher-order chromosome structure in interphase nuclei are thought to have important effects on fundamental biological processes, including chromosome condensation, replication, and transcription. Until recently, however, nuclear organization could only be analyzed microscopically. The development of chromatin conformation capture (3C)-based techniques now allows a detailed look at chromosomal architecture from the level of individual loci to the entire genome. Here we provide a robust Hi-C protocol, allowing the analysis of nuclear organization in nuclei from different wild-type and mutant plant tissues...
2017: Methods in Molecular Biology
Wanhui You, Stéphane Pien, Ueli Grossniklaus
Epigenetic control of plant development via histone modifications is involved in different processes ranging from embryonic development, vegetative development, flowering time control, floral organ development, to pollen tube growth. The identification of an increasing number of epigenetically regulated processes was greatly advanced by methods allowing the survey of genome-wide histone modifications and chromatin-protein interactions. However, genome-wide approaches are too broad to access in detail a large number of histone modifications taking place at a single locus...
2017: Methods in Molecular Biology
Eva F G Naninck, J Efraim Oosterink, Kit-Yi Yam, Lennart P de Vries, Henk Schierbeek, Johannes B van Goudoever, Rikst-Nynke Verkaik-Schakel, Josèe A Plantinga, Torsten Plosch, Paul J Lucassen, Aniko Korosi
Early-life stress (ES) impairs cognition later in life. Because ES prevention is problematic, intervention is needed, yet the mechanisms that underlie ES remain largely unknown. So far, the role of early nutrition in brain programming has been largely ignored. Here, we demonstrate that essential 1-carbon metabolism-associated micronutrients (1-CMAMs; i.e., methionine and B vitamins) early in life are crucial in programming later cognition by ES. ES was induced in male C57Bl/6 mice from postnatal d (P)2-9. 1-CMAM levels were measured centrally and peripherally by using liquid chromatography-mass spectroscopy...
October 21, 2016: FASEB Journal: Official Publication of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology
Haniyeh Eyvani, Farima Moghaddaskho, Majid Kabuli, Ali Zekri, Majid Momeny, Javad Tavakkoly-Bazzaz, Kamran Alimoghaddam, Ardeshir Ghavamzadeh, Seyed H Ghaffari
AIMS: Cell cycle dysregulation is important in tumorigenesis. Transcriptional silencing of cell cycle regulatory genes, due to DNA methylation, is a common epigenetic event in malignancies. As2O3 has been shown to induce cell cycle arrest and also to be a potential hypomethylating agent. Our study aimed to investigate DNA methylation patterns of cell cycle regulatory genes promoters, the effects of Arsenic trioxide (As2O3) on the methylated genes and cell cycle distribution in colorectal cancer (CRC) cell lines...
October 18, 2016: Life Sciences
Juliet Richetto, Renaud Massart, Ulrike Weber-Stadlbauer, Moshe Szyf, Marco A Riva, Urs Meyer
BACKGROUND: Prenatal exposure to infectious or inflammatory insults increases the risk of neurodevelopmental disorders. Using a well-established mouse model of prenatal viral-like immune activation, we examined whether this pathological association involves genome-wide DNA methylation differences at single nucleotide resolution. METHODS: Prenatal immune activation was induced by maternal treatment with the viral mimetic polyriboinosinic-polyribocytidylic acid in middle or late gestation...
August 12, 2016: Biological Psychiatry
Man Chu, Lai Shan Tam, Jing Zhu, Delong Jiao, De Hua Liu, Zhe Cai, Jie Dong, Christopher Wei Kai Lam, Chun Kwok Wong
The newly named interleukin (IL)-36 subfamily member IL-38 has been shown to exert anti-inflammatory activity. However, the in vivo immunomodulatory activity of IL-38 was poorly investigated in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). We have investigated the expression of CD4(+)IL-17(+) Th17, CD4(+)IFN-γ(+) Th1 and CD3(+)CD4(-)CD8(-) double negative (DN) T cells and the related immunopathological mechanisms in female MRL/lpr mice model of spontaneous lupus-like disease, with or without IL-38 treatment. Intravenous administration of murine recombinant IL-38 into MRL/lpr mice can ameliorate the lupus-like clinical symptoms including proteinuria, leukocyteuria and skin lesions...
October 17, 2016: Immunobiology
X Mu, S Ahmad, S Hur
The ability to distinguish between self and nonself is the fundamental basis of the immune system in all organisms. The conceptual distinction between self and nonself, however, breaks down when it comes to endogenous retroviruses and other retroelements. While some retroelements retain the virus-like features including the capacity to replicate and reinvade the host genome, most have become inactive through mutations or host epigenetic silencing. And yet, accumulating evidence suggests that endogenous retroelements, both active and inactive, play important roles not only in pathogenesis of immune disorders, but also in proper functioning of the immune system...
2016: Advances in Immunology
Peter G K Clark, Darren J Dixon, Paul E Brennan
The bromodomain family of proteins are 'readers' of acetylated lysines of histones, a key mark in the epigenetic code of gene regulation. Without high quality chemical probes with which to study these proteins, their biological function, and potential use in therapeutics, remains unknown. Recently, a number of chemical ligands were reported for the previously unprobed bromodomain proteins BRD7 and BRD9. Herein the development and characterisation of probes against these proteins is detailed, including the preliminary biological activity of BRD7 and BRD9 assessed using these probes...
March 2016: Drug Discovery Today. Technologies
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