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Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Accurate identification and quantification of DNA species by next-generation sequencing in adeno-associated viral vectors produced in insect cells.

Recombinant adeno-associated viral (rAAV) vectors have proven excellent tools for the treatment of many genetic diseases and other complex diseases. However, the illegitimate encapsidation of DNA contaminants within viral particles constitutes a major safety concern for rAAV-based therapies. Moreover, the development of rAAV vectors for early-phase clinical trials has revealed the limited accuracy of the analytical tools used to characterize these new and complex drugs. Although most published data concerning residual DNA in rAAV preparations have been generated by quantitative PCR, we have developed a novel single-strand virus sequencing (SSV-Seq) method for quantification of DNA contaminants in AAV vectors produced…

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Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Function-based identification of mammalian enhancers using site-specific integration.

The accurate and comprehensive identification of functional regulatory sequences in mammalian genomes remains a major challenge. Here we describe site-specific integration fluorescence-activated cell sorting followed by sequencing (SIF-seq), an unbiased, medium-throughput functional assay for the discovery of distant-acting enhancers. Targeted single-copy genomic integration into pluripotent cells, reporter assays and flow cytometry are coupled with high-throughput DNA sequencing to enable parallel screening of large numbers of DNA sequences. By functionally interrogating >500 kilobases (kb) of mouse and human sequence in mouse embryonic stem cells for enhancer activity we identified enhancers at pluripotency loci including NANOG. In in vitro-differentiated cardiomyocytes and neural…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Integrated DNA methylome and transcriptome analysis reveals the ethylene-induced flowering pathway genes in pineapple.

Ethylene has long been used to promote flowering in pineapple production. Ethylene-induced flowering is dose dependent, with a critical threshold level of ethylene response factors needed to trigger flowering. The mechanism of ethylene-induced flowering is still unclear. Here, we integrated isoform sequencing (iso-seq), Illumina short-reads sequencing and whole-genome bisulfite sequencing (WGBS) to explore the early changes of transcriptomic and DNA methylation in pineapple following high-concentration ethylene (HE) and low-concentration ethylene (LE) treatment. Iso-seq produced 122,338 transcripts, including 26,893 alternative splicing isoforms, 8,090 novel transcripts and 12,536 candidate long non-coding RNAs. The WGBS results suggested a decrease in CG methylation and…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Identification by high-throughput imaging of the histone methyltransferase EHMT2 as an epigenetic regulator of VEGFA alternative splicing.

Recent evidence points to a role of chromatin in regulation of alternative pre-mRNA splicing (AS). In order to identify novel chromatin regulators of AS, we screened an RNAi library of chromatin proteins using a cell-based high-throughput in vivo assay. We identified a set of chromatin proteins that regulate AS. Using simultaneous genome-wide expression and AS analysis, we demonstrate distinct and non-overlapping functions of these chromatin modifiers on transcription and AS. Detailed mechanistic characterization of one dual function chromatin modifier, the H3K9 methyltransferase EHMT2 (G9a), identified VEGFA as a major chromatin-mediated AS target. Silencing of EHMT2, or its heterodimer partner EHMT1,…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Stalking a lethal superbug by whole-genome sequencing and phylogenetics: Influence on unraveling a major hospital outbreak of carbapenem-resistant Klebsiella pneumoniae.

From July 2010-April 2013, Leipzig University Hospital experienced the largest outbreak of a Klebsiella pneumoniae carbapenemase 2 (KPC-2)-producing Klebsiella pneumoniae (KPC-2-Kp) strain observed in Germany to date. After termination of the outbreak, we aimed to reconstruct transmission pathways by phylogenetics based on whole-genome sequencing (WGS).One hundred seventeen KPC-2-Kp isolates from 89 outbreak patients, 5 environmental KPC-2-Kp isolates, and 24 K pneumoniae strains not linked to the outbreak underwent WGS. Phylogenetic analysis was performed blinded to clinical data and based on the genomic reads.A patient from Greece was confirmed as the source of the outbreak. Transmission pathways for 11 out of…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Characterization of plasmids harboring blaCTX-M and blaCMY genes in E. coli from French broilers.

Resistance to extended-spectrum cephalosporins (ESC) is a global health issue. The aim of this study was to analyze and compare plasmids coding for resistance to ESC isolated from 16 avian commensal and 17 avian pathogenic Escherichia coli (APEC) strains obtained respectively at slaughterhouse or from diseased broilers in 2010-2012. Plasmid DNA was used to transform E. coli DH5alpha, and the resistances of the transformants were determined. The sequences of the ESC-resistance plasmids prepared from transformants were obtained by Illumina (33 plasmids) or PacBio (1 plasmid). Results showed that 29 of these plasmids contained the blaCTX-M-1 gene and belonged to the…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

The sea lamprey germline genome provides insights into programmed genome rearrangement and vertebrate evolution.

The sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus) serves as a comparative model for reconstructing vertebrate evolution. To enable more informed analyses, we developed a new assembly of the lamprey germline genome that integrates several complementary data sets. Analysis of this highly contiguous (chromosome-scale) assembly shows that both chromosomal and whole-genome duplications have played significant roles in the evolution of ancestral vertebrate and lamprey genomes, including chromosomes that carry the six lamprey HOX clusters. The assembly also contains several hundred genes that are reproducibly eliminated from somatic cells during early development in lamprey. Comparative analyses show that gnathostome (mouse) homologs of these genes…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

The DNA methylome of the hyperthermoacidophilic crenarchaeon Sulfolobus acidocaldarius.

DNA methylation is the most common epigenetic modification observed in the genomic DNA (gDNA) of prokaryotes and eukaryotes. Methylated nucleobases, N6-methyl-adenine (m6A), N4-methyl-cytosine (m4C), and 5-methyl-cytosine (m5C), detected on gDNA represent the discrimination mark between self and non-self DNA when they are part of restriction-modification systems in prokaryotes (Bacteria and Archaea). In addition, m5C in Eukaryotes and m6A in Bacteria play an important role in the regulation of key cellular processes. Although archaeal genomes present modified bases as in the two other domains of life, the significance of DNA methylations as regulatory mechanisms remains largely uncharacterized in Archaea. Here, we…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Comparative heterochromatin profiling reveals conserved and unique epigenome signatures linked to adaptation and development of malaria parasites.

Heterochromatin-dependent gene silencing is central to the adaptation and survival of Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasites, allowing clonally variant gene expression during blood infection in humans. By assessing genome-wide heterochromatin protein 1 (HP1) occupancy, we present a comprehensive analysis of heterochromatin landscapes across different Plasmodium species, strains, and life cycle stages. Common targets of epigenetic silencing include fast-evolving multi-gene families encoding surface antigens and a small set of conserved HP1-associated genes with regulatory potential. Many P. falciparum heterochromatic genes are marked in a strain-specific manner, increasing the parasite’s adaptive capacity. Whereas heterochromatin is strictly maintained during mitotic proliferation of asexual blood stage…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Draft genome of the Peruvian scallop Argopecten purpuratus.

The Peruvian scallop, Argopecten purpuratus, is mainly cultured in southern Chile and Peru was introduced into China in the last century. Unlike other Argopecten scallops, the Peruvian scallop normally has a long life span of up to 7 to 10 years. Therefore, researchers have been using it to develop hybrid vigor. Here, we performed whole genome sequencing, assembly, and gene annotation of the Peruvian scallop, with an important aim to develop genomic resources for genetic breeding in scallops.A total of 463.19-Gb raw DNA reads were sequenced. A draft genome assembly of 724.78 Mb was generated (accounting for 81.87% of the…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Parallels between experimental and natural evolution of legume symbionts.

The emergence of symbiotic interactions has been studied using population genomics in nature and experimental evolution in the laboratory, but the parallels between these processes remain unknown. Here we compare the emergence of rhizobia after the horizontal transfer of a symbiotic plasmid in natural populations of Cupriavidus taiwanensis, over 10 MY ago, with the experimental evolution of symbiotic Ralstonia solanacearum for a few hundred generations. In spite of major differences in terms of time span, environment, genetic background, and phenotypic achievement, both processes resulted in rapid genetic diversification dominated by purifying selection. We observe no adaptation in the plasmid carrying…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Footprints of parasitism in the genome of the parasitic flowering plant Cuscuta campestris.

A parasitic lifestyle, where plants procure some or all of their nutrients from other living plants, has evolved independently in many dicotyledonous plant families and is a major threat for agriculture globally. Nevertheless, no genome sequence of a parasitic plant has been reported to date. Here we describe the genome sequence of the parasitic field dodder, Cuscuta campestris. The genome contains signatures of a fairly recent whole-genome duplication and lacks genes for pathways superfluous to a parasitic lifestyle. Specifically, genes needed for high photosynthetic activity are lost, explaining the low photosynthesis rates displayed by the parasite. Moreover, several genes involved…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

A high-quality genome sequence of Rosa chinensis to elucidate ornamental traits.

Rose is the world’s most important ornamental plant, with economic, cultural and symbolic value. Roses are cultivated worldwide and sold as garden roses, cut flowers and potted plants. Roses are outbred and can have various ploidy levels. Our objectives were to develop a high-quality reference genome sequence for the genus Rosa by sequencing a doubled haploid, combining long and short reads, and anchoring to a high-density genetic map, and to study the genome structure and genetic basis of major ornamental traits. We produced a doubled haploid rose line (‘HapOB’) from Rosa chinensis ‘Old Blush’ and generated a rose genome assembly…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Unrestrained markerless trait stacking in Nannochloropsis gaditana through combined genome editing and marker recycling technologies.

Robust molecular tool kits in model and industrial microalgae are key to efficient targeted manipulation of endogenous and foreign genes in the nuclear genome for basic research and, as importantly, for the development of algal strains to produce renewable products such as biofuels. While Cas9-mediated gene knockout has been demonstrated in a small number of algal species with varying efficiency, the ability to stack traits or generate knockout mutations in two or more loci are often severely limited by selectable agent availability. This poses a critical hurdle in developing production strains, which require stacking of multiple traits, or in probing…

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

Genomic variation among and within six Juglans species.

Genomic analysis in Juglans (walnuts) is expected to transform the breeding and agricultural production of both nuts and lumber. To that end, we report here the determination of reference sequences for six additional relatives of Juglans regia: Juglans sigillata (also from section Dioscaryon), Juglans nigra, Juglans microcarpa, Juglans hindsii (from section Rhysocaryon), Juglans cathayensis (from section Cardiocaryon), and the closely related Pterocarya stenoptera While these are ‘draft’ genomes, ranging in size between 640Mbp and 990Mbp, their contiguities and accuracies can support powerful annotations of genomic variation that are often the foundation of new avenues of research and breeding. We annotated…

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