Abstract in English:Abstract The aim of this study was to investigate whether the S100B polymorphisms are associated with systemic lupus erythematous (SLE) in a Chinese population. A total of 313 SLE patients and 396 control subjects were enrolled in the present study. The genotypes of three SNPs (rs9722, rs881827 and rs1051169) in S100B gene were detected by single base extension polymerase chain reaction (SBE-PCR). Serum S100B levels were determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Rs1051169 was associated with an increased risk of SLE (C vs. G: adjusted OR=1.46, 95% CI, 1.18-1.80, p=0.001; CC vs. GG: adjusted OR=1.99, 95% CI, 1.32-3.02, p=0.001; CC+GC vs. GG: adjusted OR=1.54, 95% CI, 1.13-2.11, p=0.007; CC vs. GC+GG: adjusted OR=1.67, 95% CI, 1.16-2.42, p=0.006). Haplotype analysis showed that the G-G-C haplotype was associated with an increased risk of SLE (OR=1.50, 95% CI, 1.14-1.98, p=0.004). Stratified analyses showed that the rs1051169 polymorphism was associated with an increased risk of neurologic disorder in SLE patients (C vs. G: OR=1.78, 95% CI, 1.22-2.59, p=0.003; GC vs. GG: OR=2.33, 95% CI, 1.14-4.77, P=0.019; CC vs. GG: OR=3.02, 95% CI, 1.39-6.53, p=0.004; CC+GC vs. GG: OR=2.57, 95% CI=1.31-5.04, p=0.005). In addition, SLE patients with neurologic disorder carrying the rs1051169 GC/CC genotypes present a higher serum S100B levels compared with that carrying the GG genotype (p < 0.05). Our results indicate that the rs1051169 polymorphism may be involved in the pathogenesis of SLE.
Abstract in English:Abstract Huntington’s disease (HD) is due to dominant expansions of the CAG repeat of the HTT gene. Meiotic instability of the (CAG)n might impact the disorder frequency. We report on HD minimal prevalence in Rio Grande do Sul (RS) state, Brazil, and on intergenerational instability of the (CAG)n in HD families. Symptomatic and at-risk subjects from 179 HD families were ascertained between 2013 and 2016. Clinical, molecular and family history data were obtained. Expanded (CAG)n length differences between parent and child (delta-expanded-(CAG)n) were calculated. Effect of parental age on the (CAG)n instability upon transmission was inferred by correlating delta-expanded-(CAG)n between siblings to their age differences. HD minimal prevalence in RS state was estimated as 1.85:100,000 inhabitants. Alleles with (CAG)27-35 were found on 21/384 non-disease associated chromosomes (5.5%); among 253 expanded alleles, four (1.6%) were within reduced penetrance range with (CAG)36-39. In 32 direct transmissions, mean instability was larger among paternal than maternal transmissions. In direct transmissions and in 51 sibling pairs, parental age at the time of child birth were not correlated with delta-expanded-(CAG)n. Briefly, HD prevalence in RS state was lower than those reported for European populations. Expanded (CAG)n transmissions were unstable and not associated to parental age.
Abstract in English:Abstract IPS-1 and RIP1 are the main downstream molecules of RIG1 and MDA5, as intracytoplasmic receptors, which are the main receptors involved in recognition of internal and external viral double-stranded RNA. In this project, mRNA levels of IPS-1 and RIP1 were investigated in the peripheral blood immune cells of chronic hepatitis B (CHB) patients. IPS-1 and RIP1 mRNA levels were measured in 60 CHB patients and 120 healthy subjects, using RT-qPCR technique. A significant increase in expression levels of IPS-1 and RIP1 was found in patients when compared to healthy individuals. There was no correlation between IPS-1 and RIP1expression levels with the serum levels of hepatitis B e-Antigen (HBeAg) and liver enzymes in patients. Based on the results, it seems that IPS-1 and RIP1 can participate in the induction of low chronic inflammation, which is a main cause of liver cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma.
Abstract in English:Abstract Osteogenesis Imperfecta (OI) is a heterogeneous genetic disorder characterized by bone fragility and fracture. Mutations in 20 distinct genes can cause OI, and therefore, the genetic diagnosis of OI is frequently difficult to obtain because of the great number of genes that can be related with this disease. Studies that report the most frequently mutated genes in OI patients can help to improve molecular strategies for diagnosis of the disease. In order to characterize the mutation profile of OI in Brazilian patients, we analyzed 30 unrelated patients through SSCP screening, NGS gene panel, and/or Sanger sequencing for the 11 most frequently mutated genes in the database of mutations, including COL1A1, COL1A2, P3H1, CRTAP, PPIB, SERPINH1, SERPINF1, FKBP10, SP7, WNT1 and IFITM5. Disease-causing variants were identified in COL1A1, COL1A2, FKBP10, P3H1, and IFITM5. A total of 28 distinct mutations were identified, including seven novel changes. Our data show that the analysis of these five genes is able to detect at least 95% of causative mutations in OI disorder from Brazilian population. However, it has to be taken into considerations that distinct populations can have different frequencies of disease-causing variants. Hence, it is important to replicate this study in other groups.
Abstract in English:Abstract Vitamin D exerts an immuno-modulatory activity on several immune system cells through the vitamin D receptor (VDR). Herein, we verified that age and a therapeutic regimen containing protease inhibitors are associated with failures in antiretroviral therapies (ARVs). In addition, we assessed whether a VDR SNP (rs11568820: C allele and CC genotype) and GC (rs2228570-rs11568820) allelic combinations are associated with immunological failure (p < 0.05). Our findings suggest a possible role of VDR SNPs on immunological failure in HIV-1+ individuals undergoing regular ARVs.
Abstract in English:Abstract Crenicichla is the largest genus in the Cichlidae family in South America. The genus includes 100 valid species that are popularly known in Brazil as jacundás or joaninhas and are widely distributed in rivers east of the Andes. Cytogenetic analyses were carried out on seven species in this genus. All species showed a diploid number of 48 with interspecific differences in karyotype formulas and AgNORs located in interstitial position on the short arm of the largest metacentric pair, except for the two populations from C. britskii. Population A showed terminal markings on the long arm of the fifth pair of the complement, and population B showed up to two marked chromosome pairs. FISH with an 18S rDNA probe was coincident with AgNORs and CMA3, except for pair 6 from population B of C. britskii that did not presented positive CMA3 sites. This work presents first cytogenetic data for C. haroldoi, C. maculata, and C. punctata, and the results show karyotypic patterns similar to those in the literature. However, the diversity found in populations of C. britskii represents new information about the evolution of the karyotype of the Cichlidae family, which has been conservative. Furthermore, the data could assist in phylogenetic studies of Crenicichla.
Abstract in English:Abstract Parodontidae is a small group of fish and some species are particularly difficult to identify due to the lack of sufficiently consistent morphological traits. Cytogenetically, the species possess 2n = 54 chromosomes and are either sex-homomorphic or sex-heteromorphic (regarding its chromosomes). We evaluated data on color, tooth morphology, cytogenetics, and mitochondrial markers (COI) in Apareiodon specimens from the Aripuanã River (Amazon basin) and the results were compared to other congeneric taxa. Morphological results show an overlap of body color and tooth morphology to other known Apareiodon. The cytogenetics data showed that the 2n = 54 chromosomes, 50 m/sm + 4 st and, a ZZ/ZW sex chromosome system in Apareiodon sp. are common to other species of the genus. However, the number and chromosomal localization of the 45S ribosomal and pPh2004 satellite DNA sites, in addition to W chromosome localization of the pPh2004 appear to be exclusive cytogenetic features in Apareiodon sp. Our phylogenetic tree revealed well-supported clades and confirmed, by barcode species delimitation analysis, a new Molecular Operational Taxonomic Unit (MOTU) for Apareiodon sp. (Aripuanã River). As a whole, the above features support the occurrence of a new species of the Apareiodon, thus far unknown for the Parodontidae.
Abstract in English:Abstract Acute infections of bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV) lead to a range of clinical presentations. Laboratory tests for detection depend on collection of samples during a short viremia. Acutely infected animals remain largely undiagnosed. Transfer RNA halves (tsRNAs) are hypothesized to function like microRNAs to regulate gene expression during an immune response. The objective of this study was to identify tsRNAs in cattle that had been challenged with a non-cytopathic field strain of BVDV. Colostrum-deprived neonatal Holstein calves were either challenged with BVDV (n=5) or mock challenged (n=4). Sera was collected prior to challenge and days 4, 9, and 16 post challenge. RNA was extracted and read counts of small non-coding RNAs were assessed using next-generation sequencing. A total of 87,838,207 reads identified 41 different tsRNAs. Two 5’ tsRNAs, tsRNAProAGG and tsRNAValAAC, differed across time. Two 5’ tsRNAs, tsRNAGlyCCC and tsRNAGlyGCC, differed between treatment groups across time. Four days post challenge, 5’ tsRNAGlyCCC and tsRNAGlyGCC were significantly lower in the challenged group than the control group. Further studies are needed to identify the importance and function of 5’ tsRNAGlyCCC and tsRNAGlyGCC in serum samples of cattle challenged with BVDV.
Abstract in English:Abstract SPLs are plant-specific transcription factors that play important regulatory roles in plant growth and development. Systematic analysis of the SPL family has been performed in numerous plants, such as Arabidopsis, rice, and Populus. However, no comparative analysis has been performed across different species to examine evolutionary features. In this study, we present a comparative analysis of SPLs in different species. The results showed that 84 SPLs of the four species can be divided into six groups according to phylogeny. We found that most of the SPL-containing regions in maize showed extensive conservation with duplicated regions of rice and sorghum. A gene duplication analysis in maize indicated that ZmSPLs showed a significant excess of segmental duplication. The Ka/Ks analysis indicated that 9 out of 18 duplicated pairs in maize experienced positive selection, while SPL gene pairs of rice and sorghum mainly evolved under purifying selection, suggesting novel evolutionary features for ZmSPLs. The 31 ZmSPLs were further analyzed by describing their gene structure, phylogenetic relationships, chromosomal location, and expression, Among the ZmSPLs, 13 were predicated to be targeted by miR156s and involved in drought stress response. These results provide the foundation for future functional analyses of ZmSPLs.
Abstract in English:Abstract We present a collection of minimalist binary vectors for transformation through ATMT applicable to several fungi species. pLUO plasmid binary vectors consist of a reporter module containing fluorescent proteins, mCherry or eGFP, flanked by a multiple cloning site and a transcription terminator site. They also present a synthetic gene allowing resistance to Hygromicin B flanked by alternate promoters, one for yeast and another for filamentous fungi. Left and right borders were added for Agrobacterium tumefaciens recognition, and a minimal broad-host range RK2 replication origin. Transformation was validated in the pathogenic fungus Paracoccidioides lutzii. Hence, we developed an efficient and reliable molecular tool for fungal transformation: minimalist, synthetic, modular, and available in four different versions, and these can still be readily modified using a few primers and few cloning steps.
Abstract in English:Abstract Despite rapid advances in both the early detection and treatment of cancer, the mortality from this disease remains high, which justifies the development of new products that are more selective and effective and have fewer side effects. Accordingly, a novel ester was synthesized that contains two pharmacophores with important biological activities: (I) 4-aminoantipyrine, which has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects, and (II) the pharmacophore 1,4-dioxo-butenyl, which has cytotoxic activity. When administered alone, this compound is non-genotoxic, and it does not cause an increasing in splenic phagocytosis. Nevertheless, it can induce cell death. When administered in combination with commercial chemotherapeutic agents, such as doxorubicin, cisplatin, and cyclophosphamide, the ester shows antigenotoxic activity and decreases phagocytosis and reduces the potential to cause cell death. These results indicate that the compound should not be used in combination with chemotherapeutic agents that exert their effect through DNA damage, an important feature of antitumor drugs.
Abstract in English:Abstract The present study aimed to evaluate the biological responses of Colossoma macropomum to naphthalene injection and subsequent hypoxia exposure, emphasizing the expression of the tumor suppressor gene tp53. Tambaquis were intraperitoneally injected with naphthalene (50 mg/kg) and, after 96 hours, the fish were transferred to respirometry chambers and, submitted to progressive hypoxia for the determination of critical PO2. In a subsequent experiment, the fish received an intraperitoneal injection of naphthalene and were kept for 96 hours under normoxia. Successively, fish were challenged with acute hypoxia (PO2<PO2 crit) during 6 hours. We observed that the PO2 crit was not affected by naphthalene injection. Moreover, hematological parameters were modulated only in response to hypoxia. Fish with naphthalene injection plus hypoxia exposure presented altered activity of the GST and CAT enzymes. Exposure to naphthalene also resulted in DNA damages, which was not influenced by hypoxia. Hypoxia accentuated the hepatic lesions caused by naphthalene, as well as it also impaired the transcription of tp53 in naphtalene injected fish, demonstrating the risks of contaminating aquatic environments, especially environments where hypoxic conditions are common and occur on a daily or on seasonal basis, as in the Amazon basin.
Abstract in English:Abstract Titanium dioxide nanoparticles (TiO2NPs) are widely used and may impact the environment. Thus, this study used a high concentration of TiO2NP (1000 mg/L) to verify the defense mechanisms triggered by a plant system – an indicator of toxicity. Furthermore, this study aimed at completely characterizing TiO2NP suspensions to elucidate their toxic behavior. TiO2NPs were taken up by meristematic cells of Allium cepa, leading to slight inhibition of seed germination and root growth. However, severe cellular and DNA damages were observed in a concentration-dependent manner (10, 100, and 1000 mg/L). For this reason, we used the highest tested concentration (1000 mg/L) to verify if the plant cells developed defense mechanisms against the TiO2NPs and evaluated other evidences of TiO2NP genotoxicity. Nucleolar alterations and plant defense responses (i.e., increased lytic vacuoles, oil bodies and NP phase change) were observed in meristematic cells exposed to TiO2NP at 1000 mg/L. In summary, TiO2NPs can damage the genetic material of plants; however, plants displayed defense mechanisms against the deleterious effects of these NPs. In addition, A. cepa was found to be a suitable test system to evaluate the cyto- and genotoxicity of NPs.
Abstract in English:Abstract Two allopatric populations of Brazilian diploid and tetraploid Odontophrynus americanus species complex, both from São Paulo state, had their blood hemoglobin biochemically analyzed. In addition, these specimens were cytogenetically characterized. Biochemical characterization of hemoglobin expression showed a distinct banding pattern between the allopatric specimens. Besides this, two distinct phenotypes, not linked to ploidy, sex, or age, were observed in adult animals of both populations. Phenotype A exhibits dark-colored body with small papillae, ogival-shaped jaw with reduced interpupillary distance and shorter hind limbs. Phenotype B shows yellowish-colored body with larger papillae, arch-shaped jaw with broader interpupillary distance and longer hind limbs. Intermediate phenotypes were also found. Considering the geographical isolation of both populations, differences in chromosomal secondary constrictions and distinct hemoglobins banding patterns, these data indicate that 2n and 4n populations represent cryptic species in the O. americanus species complex. The observed phenotypic diversity can be interpreted as population genetic variability. Eventually future data may indicate a probable beginning of speciation in these Brazilian frogs. Such inter- and intrapopulational differentiation/speciation process indicates that O. americanus species complex taxonomy deserves further evaluation by genomics and metabarcoding communities, also considering the pattern of hemoglobin expression, in South American frogs.
Abstract in English:Abstract The genus Rhinella is one of the most diverse groups of bufonid toads, currently composed by 93 valid species and naturally distributed throughout different Neotropical ecoregions. Here, we analyze nine Brazilian populations of toads representing species of the Rhinella margaritifera and Rhinella marina groups. These new data include the first description of the R. hoogmoedi and R. proboscidae karyotypes, as well as other taxonomically unresolved forms. Chromosomal analysis of the populations revealed pronounced chromosomal uniformity (2n=22), including the diploid number and chromosomal morphology. Three different NOR-bearing chromosomes were identified: in the subterminal region of pair 10q in R. hoogmoedi, Rhinella sp. 1 and Rhinella sp. 2, in subterminal region of 7p in R. proboscidae and Rhinella cf. margaritifera while in R. henseli and R. icterica was detected in interstitial region of 7p. Karyotypic uniformity of the genus permits the inference of interspecific chromosome homologies and evolutionary changes in the NOR-bearing chromosome may represent an informative character in species group level. The review of the cytogenetic data of the Rhinella species together with the new karyotypes reported here contributes to the understanding of the chromosomal evolution of these toads, which karyotypes are highly conserved despite the ample distribution of many forms.
Abstract in English:Abstract Current diets contain an increasing amount of salt and high fructose corn syrup, but it remains unclear as to how dietary salt and fructose affect organ function at the molecular level. This study aimed to test the hypothesis that consumption of high salt and fructose diets would increase tissue-specific expression of two critical osmotically-regulated genes, nuclear factor of activated T-cells 5 (NFAT5) and aldose reductase (AR). Fifty Sprague-Dawley rats were placed on a control, 4% NaCl, 8% NaCl, or 64% fructose diet for eight weeks. Fourteen different tissue samples were harvested and snap-frozen, followed by RNA purification, cDNA synthesis, and NFAT5 and AR gene expression quantification by real-time PCR.Our findings demonstrate that NFAT5 and AR expression are up-regulated in the kidney medulla, liver, brain, and adipose tissue following consumption of a high salt diet. NFAT5 expression is also up-regulated in the kidney cortex following consumption of a 64% fructose diet. These findings highlight the kidney medulla, liver, brain, and adipose tissue as being “salt-responsive” tissues and reveal that a high fructose diet can lead to enhanced NFAT5 expression in the kidney cortex. Further characterization of signaling mechanisms involved could help elucidate how these diets affect organ function long term.
Abstract in English:Abstract Microvesicles are able to induce the cell of origin’s phenotype in a target cell. MicroRNA-21, as an oncomir, is up-regulated in almost all cancer types such as leukemia which results in cell proliferation. In this study, we examine the ability of leukemia microvesicles to induce proliferation in hematopoietic stem progenitor cells (HSPCs) via microRNA-21 dysregulation. Herein, leukemia microvesicles were isolated from HL-60 and NB-4 cell lines by ultracentrifugation, and then their protein content was measured. Normal HSPCs were isolated from umbilical cord blood samples by a CD-34 antibody. These cells were treated with 20 and 40 μg/mL leukemia microvesicles for 5 and 10 days, respectively. Cell count, CD-34 analysis, and a microRNA-21 gene expression assay were done at days 5 and 10. HSPCs showed a significant increase in both microRNA-21 gene expression and cell count after treating with leukemia microvesicles compared with the control group. CD-34 analysis as stemness proof did not show any difference among the studied groups. This data suggests that HSPC proliferation followed by microRNA-21 gene over expression can be another evidence of a leukemia-like phenotype induction in a healthy target cell by leukemia microvesicles.
Abstract in English:Abstract The aim of this study was to evaluate the impact and mechanism of co-blocking of costimulatory signals CD28-B7-CD40-CD40L during immune allograft rejection. Forty-eight recipient rabbits were prepared as a high-risk corneal allograft model. After surgery, the animals were randomly divided into: control group, MR1 group, anti-B7 group, and co-blocking group (n=12, each group). Subconjunctival injection was first performed on the allograft surgery day until post-surgery day five. Four weeks later, or when immune rejection occurred, the cornea was sampled to detect and analyze the gene spectrum. The survival time in the co-blocking group was significantly longer than that in the other three groups (p < 0.05). Gene expression analysis revealed that the expression of genes associated with immune rejection, interleukin (IL)-1α, IL-1β, intercellular cell adhesion molecule-1, and IL-2 was down-regulated in the co-blocking group, while IL-10 was up-regulated, but the changes in nuclear factor-κB and interferon-γ were not significant. In conclusion, the co-blocking of costimulatory signals can significantly reduce genes that promote corneal allograft rejection. The inhibition of corneal allograft rejection gene expression was significantly enhanced. These gene expression results can explain the conclusion of previous work at the genetic level.
Abstract in English:Abstract Dysphania schraderiana is widely distributed in Lhasa (Tibet, China) and used as a traditional medicine. However, the lack of genetic information hinders the understanding of its physiological processes, such as the biosynthesis of secondary metabolites. Herein, we used Illumina Hiseq4000 platform to sequence the transcriptome of flower and leaf tissues from D. schraderiana for the first time. Totally, 40,142 unigenes were assembled from approximately 5.2 million clean reads. All unigenes underwent gene prediction and were subsequently annotated in a NR (NCBI non-redundant protein) database, COG (Clusters of Orthologous Groups of proteins) database, and KEGG (Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes) database. Among the 40,142 unigenes, 2,579 genes were identified as differentially expressed between flowers and leaves, and used in further enrichment analysis. Also, 2,156 unigenes were annotated as transcription factors. Furthermore, our transcriptome analysis resulted in the identification of candidate unigenes annotated to enzymes involved in terpenoid biosynthesis. Taken together, this work has laid the foundation for the investigation of secondary metabolite biosynthesis and other physiological processes of D. schraderiana.
Abstract in English:Abstract Mosses in conjunction with hornworts and liverworts are collectively referred to as bryophytes. These seedless, nonvascular plants are the closest extant relatives of early terrestrial plants and their study is essential to understand the evolutionary first steps of land plants. Here we report the complete chloroplast (cp) genome sequence of Pseudocrossidium replicatum, a moss belonging to the Pottiaceae family that is common in the central highlands of Mexico, in South America, in southern USA, and in Kenia. The cp genome (plastome) of P. replicatum is 123,512 bp in size, comprising inverted repeats of 9,886 bp and single-copy regions of 85,146 bp (LSC) and 18,594 bp (SSC). The plastome encodes 82 different proteins, 31 different tRNAs, and 4 different rRNAs. Phylogenetic analysis using 16 cp protein-coding genes demonstrated that P. replicatum is closely related to Syntrichia ruralis, and the most basal mosses are Takakia lepidozioides followed by Sphagnum palustre. Our analysis indicates that during the evolution of the mosses’ plastome, eight genes were lost. The complete plastome sequence reported here can be useful in evolutionary and population genetics.