September 22, 2019  |  

Global identification of the full-length transcripts and alternative splicing related to phenolic acid biosynthetic genes in Salvia miltiorrhiza.

Salvianolic acids are among the main bioactive components in Salvia miltiorrhiza, and their biosynthesis has attracted widespread interest. However, previous studies on the biosynthesis of phenolic acids using next-generation sequencing platforms are limited with regard to the assembly of full-length transcripts. Based on hybrid-seq (next-generation and single molecular real-time sequencing) of the S. miltiorrhiza root transcriptome, we experimentally identified 15 full-length transcripts and four alternative splicing events of enzyme-coding genes involved in the biosynthesis of rosmarinic acid. Moreover, we herein demonstrate that lithospermic acid B accumulates in the phloem and xylem of roots, in agreement with the expression patterns of the identified key genes related to rosmarinic acid biosynthesis. According to co-expression patterns, we predicted that six candidate cytochrome P450s and five candidate laccases participate in the salvianolic acid pathway. Our results provide a valuable resource for further investigation into the synthetic biology of phenolic acids in S. miltiorrhiza.


September 22, 2019  |  

Biosynthesis of antibiotic chuangxinmycin from Actinoplanes tsinanensis.

Chuangxinmycin is an antibiotic isolated from Actinoplanes tsinanensis CPCC 200056 in the 1970s with a novel indole-dihydrothiopyran heterocyclic skeleton. Chuangxinmycin showed in vitro antibacterial activity and in vivo efficacy in mouse infection models as well as preliminary clinical trials. But the biosynthetic pathway of chuangxinmycin has been obscure since its discovery. Herein, we report the identification of a stretch of DNA from the genome of A. tsinanensis CPCC 200056 that encodes genes for biosynthesis of chuangxinmycin by bioinformatics analysis. The designated cxn cluster was then confirmed to be responsible for chuangxinmycin biosynthesis by direct cloning and heterologous expressing in Streptomyces coelicolor M1146. The cytochrome P450 CxnD was verified to be involved in the dihydrothiopyran ring closure reaction by the identification of seco-chuangxinmycin in S. coelicolor M1146 harboring the cxn gene cluster with an inactivated cxnD. Based on these results, a plausible biosynthetic pathway for chuangxinmycin biosynthesis was proposed, by hijacking the primary sulfur transfer system for sulfur incorporation. The identification of the biosynthetic gene cluster of chuangxinmycin paves the way for elucidating the detail biochemical machinery for chuangxinmycin biosynthesis, and provides the basis for the generation of novel chuangxinmycin derivatives by means of combinatorial biosynthesis and synthetic biology.


July 19, 2019  |  

Long-read Single-Molecule Real-Time (SMRT) full gene sequencing of cytochrome P450-2D6 (CYP2D6).

The CYP2D6 enzyme metabolizes ~25% of common medications, yet homologous pseudogenes and copy-number variants (CNVs) make interrogating the polymorphic CYP2D6 gene with short-read sequencing challenging. Therefore, we developed a novel long-read, full gene CYP2D6 single-molecule real-time (SMRT) sequencing method using the Pacific Biosciences platform. Long-range PCR and CYP2D6 SMRT sequencing of 10 previously genotyped controls identified expected star (*) alleles, but also enabled suballele resolution, diplotype refinement, and discovery of novel alleles. Coupled with an optimized variant calling pipeline, CYP2D6 SMRT sequencing was highly reproducible as triplicate intra- and inter-run non-reference genotype results were completely concordant. Importantly, targeted SMRT sequencing of upstream and downstream CYP2D6 gene copies characterized the duplicated allele in 15 control samples with CYP2D6 CNVs. The utility of CYP2D6 SMRT sequencing was further underscored by identifying the diplotypes of 14 samples with discordant or unclear CYP2D6 configurations from previous targeted genotyping, which again included suballele resolution, duplicated allele characterization, and discovery of a novel allele and tandem arrangement (CYP2D6*36+*41). Taken together, long-read CYP2D6 SMRT sequencing is an innovative, reproducible, and validated method for full-gene characterization, duplication allele-specific analysis and novel allele discovery, which will likely improve CYP2D6 metabolizer phenotype prediction for both research and clinical testing applications. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.


July 7, 2019  |  

Draft genome assembly and annotation of Glycyrrhiza uralensis, a medicinal legume.

Chinese liquorice/licorice (Glycyrrhiza uralensis) is a leguminous plant species whose roots and rhizomes have been widely used as a herbal medicine and natural sweetener. Whole-genome sequencing is essential for gene discovery studies and molecular breeding in liquorice. Here, we report a draft assembly of the approximately 379-Mb whole-genome sequence of strain 308-19 of G. uralensis; this assembly contains 34 445 predicted protein-coding genes. Comparative analyses suggested well-conserved genomic components and collinearity of gene loci (synteny) between the genome of liquorice and those of other legumes such as Medicago and chickpea. We observed that three genes involved in isoflavonoid biosynthesis, namely, 2-hydroxyisoflavanone synthase (CYP93C), 2,7,4′-trihydroxyisoflavanone 4′-O-methyltransferase/isoflavone 4′-O-methyltransferase (HI4OMT) and isoflavone-7-O-methyltransferase (7-IOMT) formed a cluster on the scaffold of the liquorice genome and showed conserved microsynteny with Medicago and chickpea. Based on the liquorice genome annotation, we predicted genes in the P450 and UDP-dependent glycosyltransferase (UGT) superfamilies, some of which are involved in triterpenoid saponin biosynthesis, and characterised their gene expression with the reference genome sequence. The genome sequencing and its annotations provide an essential resource for liquorice improvement through molecular breeding and the discovery of useful genes for engineering bioactive components through synthetic biology approaches.© 2016 The Authors The Plant Journal © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


July 7, 2019  |  

Long-read sequencing offers path to more accurate drug metabolism profiles

In the complex drug discovery process, one of the looming questions for any new compound is how it will be metabolised in a human bodyWhi|e there are several methods for evaluating this, one of the most common involves CYP2D6,the enzyme encoded by the cytochrome P450—2D6 gene.This enzyme is involved in metabolising a quarter of all commonly used medications, making it an important target for ADME and pharmacogenomics studies. It is known to activate some drugs and to play a role in the deactivation or excretion of others.


July 7, 2019  |  

Precision medicine and rare genetic variants.

Interindividual variability in drug metabolism and drug toxicity persists as a major problem for drug development and treatment. Increased or decreased capacity for drug elimination or drug action reduces drug efficacy and places substantial economic burdens on society (e.g., due to treatment of adverse drug reactions) [1]. To a great extent this variation is based on genetic differences, and indeed many drugs now carry pharmacogenomic labels regarding mandatory or informative genetic tests that have to/can be performed before prescription (http://www.fda.gov/drugs/ scienceresearch/researchareas/pharmacogenetics/ucm083378.htm).Theselabelsarebasedonthe most common allelic variants in germline or somatic genes with importance for drug metabolism that encode phase I or phase II enzymes, transporters, or drug targets. In many cases, particularly in oncology, these labels are major determinants of successful treatment. However, the question arises of to what extent these labels are useful for future precision medicine encompassing specific patients carrying mutations not commonly seen in the whole population.


July 7, 2019  |  

The Cer-cqu gene cluster determines three key players in a ß-diketone synthase polyketide pathway synthesizing aliphatics in epicuticular waxes.

Aliphatic compounds on plant surfaces, called epicuticular waxes, are the first line of defense against pathogens and pests, contribute to reducing water loss and determine other important phenotypes. Aliphatics can form crystals affecting light refraction, resulting in a color change and allowing identification of mutants in their synthesis or transport. The present study discloses three such Eceriferum (cer) genes in barley – Cer-c, Cer-q and Cer-u – known to be tightly linked and functioning in a biochemical pathway forming dominating amounts of ß-diketone and hydroxy-ß-diketones plus some esterified alkan-2-ols. These aliphatics are present in many Triticeae as well as dicotyledons such as Eucalyptus and Dianthus. Recently developed genomic resources and mapping populations in barley defined these genes to a small region on chromosome arm 2HS. Exploiting Cer-c and -u potential functions pinpointed five candidates, of which three were missing in apparent cer-cqu triple mutants. Sequencing more than 50 independent mutants for each gene confirmed their identification. Cer-c is a chalcone synthase-like polyketide synthase, designated diketone synthase (DKS), Cer-q is a lipase/carboxyl transferase and Cer-u is a P450 enzyme. All were highly expressed in pertinent leaf sheath tissue of wild type. A physical map revealed the order Cer-c, Cer-u, Cer-q with the flanking genes 101kb apart, confirming they are a gene cluster, Cer-cqu. Homology-based modeling suggests that many of the mutant alleles affect overall protein structure or specific active site residues. The rich diversity of identified mutations will facilitate future studies of three key enzymes involved in synthesis of plant apoplast waxes. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Experimental Biology.


July 7, 2019  |  

Implementation of pharmacogenomics in everyday clinical settings.

Currently, germline pharmacogenomics (PGx) is successfully implemented within certain specialties in clinical care. With the integration of PGx in pharmacotherapy multiple stakeholders are involved, which are identified in this chapter. Clinically relevant pharmacogenes with their related PGx test are discussed, along with diagnostic test criteria to guide clinicians and policy makers in PGx test selection. The chapter further reviews the similarities and the differences between the guidelines of the Dutch Pharmacogenetics Working Group and the Clinical Pharmacogenetics Implementation Consortium which both support healthcare professionals in understanding PGx test results and help guiding pharmacotherapy by providing evidence-based dosing recommendations. Finally, clinical studies which provide scientific evidence and information on cost-effectiveness supporting clinical implementation of PGx in clinical care are discussed along with the remaining barriers for adoption of PGx testing by healthcare professionals.© 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


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