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1.
J Med Genet ; 2020 May 07.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32381727

RESUMO

BACKGROUND: Early-onset scoliosis (EOS), defined by an onset age of scoliosis less than 10 years, conveys significant health risk to affected children. Identification of the molecular aetiology underlying patients with EOS could provide valuable information for both clinical management and prenatal screening. METHODS: In this study, we consecutively recruited a cohort of 447 Chinese patients with operative EOS. We performed exome sequencing (ES) screening on these individuals and their available family members (totaling 670 subjects). Another cohort of 13 patients with idiopathic early-onset scoliosis (IEOS) from the USA who underwent ES was also recruited. RESULTS: After ES data processing and variant interpretation, we detected molecular diagnostic variants in 92 out of 447 (20.6%) Chinese patients with EOS, including 8 patients with molecular confirmation of their clinical diagnosis and 84 patients with molecular diagnoses of previously unrecognised diseases underlying scoliosis. One out of 13 patients with IEOS from the US cohort was molecularly diagnosed. The age at presentation, the number of organ systems involved and the Cobb angle were the three top features predictive of a molecular diagnosis. CONCLUSION: ES enabled the molecular diagnosis/classification of patients with EOS. Specific clinical features/feature pairs are able to indicate the likelihood of gaining a molecular diagnosis through ES.

2.
Bone Res ; 8: 13, 2020.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32195011

RESUMO

The human spinal column is a dynamic, segmented, bony, and cartilaginous structure that protects the neurologic system and simultaneously provides balance and flexibility. Children with developmental disorders that affect the patterning or shape of the spine can be at risk of neurologic and other physiologic dysfunctions. The most common developmental disorder of the spine is scoliosis, a lateral deformity in the shape of the spinal column. Scoliosis may be part of the clinical spectrum that is observed in many developmental disorders, but typically presents as an isolated symptom in otherwise healthy adolescent children. Adolescent idiopathic scoliosis (AIS) has defied understanding in part due to its genetic complexity. Breakthroughs have come from recent genome-wide association studies (GWAS) and next generation sequencing (NGS) of human AIS cohorts, as well as investigations of animal models. These studies have identified genetic associations with determinants of cartilage biogenesis and development of the intervertebral disc (IVD). Current evidence suggests that a fraction of AIS cases may arise from variation in factors involved in the structural integrity and homeostasis of the cartilaginous extracellular matrix (ECM). Here, we review the development of the spine and spinal cartilages, the composition of the cartilage ECM, the so-called "matrisome" and its functions, and the players involved in the genetic architecture of AIS. We also propose a molecular model by which the cartilage matrisome of the IVD contributes to AIS susceptibility.

3.
Hum Mol Genet ; 27(22): 3986-3998, 2018 11 15.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30395268

RESUMO

Adolescent idiopathic scoliosis (AIS) is the most common musculoskeletal disorder of childhood development. The genetic architecture of AIS is complex, and the great majority of risk factors are undiscovered. To identify new AIS susceptibility loci, we conducted the first genome-wide meta-analysis of AIS genome-wide association studies, including 7956 cases and 88 459 controls from 3 ancestral groups. Three novel loci that surpassed genome-wide significance were uncovered in intragenic regions of the CDH13 (P-value_rs4513093 = 1.7E-15), ABO (P-value_ rs687621 = 7.3E-10) and SOX6 (P-value_rs1455114 = 2.98E-08) genes. Restricting the analysis to females improved the associations at multiple loci, most notably with variants within CDH13 despite the reduction in sample size. Genome-wide gene-functional enrichment analysis identified significant perturbation of pathways involving cartilage and connective tissue development. Expression of both SOX6 and CDH13 was detected in cartilage chondrocytes and chromatin immunoprecipitation sequencing experiments in that tissue revealed multiple HeK27ac-positive peaks overlapping associated loci. Our results further define the genetic architecture of AIS and highlight the importance of vertebral cartilage development in its pathogenesis.


Assuntos
Sistema ABO de Grupos Sanguíneos/genética , Caderinas/genética , Doenças Musculoesqueléticas/genética , Fatores de Transcrição SOXD/genética , Escoliose/genética , Adolescente , Criança , Grupos Étnicos/genética , Feminino , Predisposição Genética para Doença , Estudo de Associação Genômica Ampla , Humanos , Masculino , Doenças Musculoesqueléticas/fisiopatologia , Polimorfismo de Nucleotídeo Único/genética , Escoliose/fisiopatologia , Adulto Jovem
4.
Epigenetics Chromatin ; 11(1): 11, 2018 03 16.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29548294

RESUMO

BACKGROUND: Controlled modulation of nucleosomal DNA accessibility via post-translational modifications (PTM) is a critical component to many cellular functions. Charge-altering PTMs in the globular histone core-including acetylation, phosphorylation, crotonylation, propionylation, butyrylation, formylation, and citrullination-can alter the strong electrostatic interactions between the oppositely charged nucleosomal DNA and the histone proteins and thus modulate accessibility of the nucleosomal DNA, affecting processes that depend on access to the genetic information, such as transcription. However, direct experimental investigation of the effects of these PTMs is very difficult. Theoretical models can rationalize existing observations, suggest working hypotheses for future experiments, and provide a unifying framework for connecting PTMs with the observed effects. RESULTS: A physics-based framework is proposed that predicts the effect of charge-altering PTMs in the histone core, quantitatively for several types of lysine charge-neutralizing PTMs including acetylation, and qualitatively for all phosphorylations, on the nucleosome stability and subsequent changes in DNA accessibility, making a connection to resulting biological phenotypes. The framework takes into account multiple partially assembled states of the nucleosome at the atomic resolution. The framework is validated against experimentally known nucleosome stability changes due to the acetylation of specific lysines, and their effect on transcription. The predicted effect of charge-altering PTMs on DNA accessibility can vary dramatically, from virtually none to a strong, region-dependent increase in accessibility of the nucleosomal DNA; in some cases, e.g., H4K44, H2AK75, and H2BK57, the effect is significantly stronger than that of the extensively studied acetylation sites such H3K56, H3K115 or H3K122. Proximity to the DNA is suggestive of the strength of the PTM effect, but there are many exceptions. For the vast majority of charge-altering PTMs, the predicted increase in the DNA accessibility should be large enough to result in a measurable modulation of transcription. However, a few possible PTMs, such as acetylation of H4K77, counterintuitively decrease the DNA accessibility, suggestive of the repressed chromatin. A structural explanation for the phenomenon is provided. For the majority of charge-altering PTMs, the effect on DNA accessibility is simply additive (noncooperative), but there are exceptions, e.g., simultaneous acetylation of H4K79 and H3K122, where the combined effect is amplified. The amplification is a direct consequence of the nucleosome-DNA complex having more than two structural states. The effect of individual PTMs is classified based on changes in the accessibility of various regions throughout the nucleosomal DNA. The PTM's resulting imprint on the DNA accessibility, "PTMprint," is used to predict effects of many yet unexplored PTMs. For example, acetylation of H4K44 yields a PTMprint similar to the PTMprint of H3K56, and thus acetylation of H4K44 is predicted to lead to a wide range of strong biological effects. CONCLUSION: Charge-altering post-translational modifications in the relatively unexplored globular histone core may provide a precision mechanism for controlling accessibility to the nucleosomal DNA.


Assuntos
DNA/genética , Histonas/metabolismo , Nucleossomos/genética , Acetilação , Biologia Computacional/métodos , DNA/química , DNA/metabolismo , Histonas/química , Modelos Moleculares , Conformação Molecular , Nucleossomos/metabolismo , Fosforilação , Processamento de Proteína Pós-Traducional , Termodinâmica
5.
Sci Rep ; 6: 34091, 2016 Sep 27.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-27670941

RESUMO

On Earth, biological systems have evolved in response to environmental stressors, interactions dictated by physical forces that include gravity. The absence of gravity is an extreme stressor and the impact of its absence on biological systems is ill-defined. Astronauts who have spent extended time under conditions of minimal gravity (microgravity) experience an array of biological alterations, including perturbations in cardiovascular function. We hypothesized that physiological perturbations in cardiac function in microgravity may be a consequence of alterations in molecular and organellar dynamics within the cellular milieu of cardiomyocytes. We used a combination of mass spectrometry-based approaches to compare the relative abundance and turnover rates of 848 and 196 proteins, respectively, in rat neonatal cardiomyocytes exposed to simulated microgravity or normal gravity. Gene functional enrichment analysis of these data suggested that the protein content and function of the mitochondria, ribosomes, and endoplasmic reticulum were differentially modulated in microgravity. We confirmed experimentally that in microgravity protein synthesis was decreased while apoptosis, cell viability, and protein degradation were largely unaffected. These data support our conclusion that in microgravity cardiomyocytes attempt to maintain mitochondrial homeostasis at the expense of protein synthesis. The overall response to this stress may culminate in cardiac muscle atrophy.

6.
BMC Microbiol ; 13: 224, 2013 Oct 07.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-24099000

RESUMO

BACKGROUND: Fungi are the second most abundant type of human pathogens. Invasive fungal pathogens are leading causes of life-threatening infections in clinical settings. Toxicity to the host and drug-resistance are two major deleterious issues associated with existing antifungal agents. Increasing a host's tolerance and/or immunity to fungal pathogens has potential to alleviate these problems. A host's tolerance may be improved by modulating the immune system such that it responds more rapidly and robustly in all facets, ranging from the recognition of pathogens to their clearance from the host. An understanding of biological processes and genes that are perturbed during attempted fungal exposure, colonization, and/or invasion will help guide the identification of endogenous immunomodulators and/or small molecules that activate host-immune responses such as specialized adjuvants. RESULTS: In this study, we present computational techniques and approaches using publicly available transcriptional data sets, to predict immunomodulators that may act against multiple fungal pathogens. Our study analyzed data sets derived from host cells exposed to five fungal pathogens, namely, Alternaria alternata, Aspergillus fumigatus, Candida albicans, Pneumocystis jirovecii, and Stachybotrys chartarum. We observed statistically significant associations between host responses to A. fumigatus and C. albicans. Our analysis identified biological processes that were consistently perturbed by these two pathogens. These processes contained both immune response-inducing genes such as MALT1, SERPINE1, ICAM1, and IL8, and immune response-repressing genes such as DUSP8, DUSP6, and SPRED2. We hypothesize that these genes belong to a pool of common immunomodulators that can potentially be activated or suppressed (agonized or antagonized) in order to render the host more tolerant to infections caused by A. fumigatus and C. albicans. CONCLUSIONS: Our computational approaches and methodologies described here can now be applied to newly generated or expanded data sets for further elucidation of additional drug targets. Moreover, identified immunomodulators may be used to generate experimentally testable hypotheses that could help in the discovery of broad-spectrum immunotherapeutic interventions. All of our results are available at the following supplementary website: http://bioinformatics.cs.vt.edu/~murali/supplements/2013-kidane-bmc.


Assuntos
Descoberta de Drogas/métodos , Fungos/imunologia , Perfilação da Expressão Gênica , Interações Hospedeiro-Patógeno , Fatores Imunológicos/isolamento & purificação , Biologia Computacional , Humanos
7.
PLoS One ; 8(3): e58553, 2013.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-23516507

RESUMO

BACKGROUND: The emergence of drug-resistant pathogen strains and new infectious agents pose major challenges to public health. A promising approach to combat these problems is to target the host's genes or proteins, especially to discover targets that are effective against multiple pathogens, i.e., host-oriented broad-spectrum (HOBS) drug targets. An important first step in the discovery of such drug targets is the identification of host responses that are commonly perturbed by multiple pathogens. RESULTS: In this paper, we present a methodology to identify common host responses elicited by multiple pathogens. First, we identified host responses perturbed by each pathogen using a gene set enrichment analysis of publicly available genome-wide transcriptional datasets. Then, we used biclustering to identify groups of host pathways and biological processes that were perturbed only by a subset of the analyzed pathogens. Finally, we tested the enrichment of each bicluster in human genes that are known drug targets, on the basis of which we elicited putative HOBS targets for specific groups of bacterial pathogens. We identified 84 up-regulated and three down-regulated statistically significant biclusters. Each bicluster contained a group of pathogens that commonly dysregulated a group of biological processes. We validated our approach by checking whether these biclusters correspond to known hallmarks of bacterial infection. Indeed, these biclusters contained biological process such as inflammation, activation of dendritic cells, pro- and anti- apoptotic responses and other innate immune responses. Next, we identified biclusters containing pathogens that infected the same tissue. After a literature-based analysis of the drug targets contained in these biclusters, we suggested new uses of the drugs Anakinra, Etanercept, and Infliximab for gastrointestinal pathogens Yersinia enterocolitica, Helicobacter pylori kx2 strain, and enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli and the drug Simvastatin for hematopoietic pathogen Ehrlichia chaffeensis. CONCLUSIONS: Using a combination of automated analysis of host-response gene expression data and manual study of the literature, we have been able to suggest host-oriented treatments for specific bacterial infections. The analyses and suggestions made in this study may be utilized to generate concrete hypothesis on which gene sets to probe further in the quest for HOBS drug targets for bacterial infections. All our results are available at the following supplementary website: http://bioinformatics.cs.vt.edu/ murali/supplements/2013-kidane-plos-one.


Assuntos
Antibacterianos/farmacologia , Bactérias/efeitos dos fármacos , Biologia Computacional , Interações Hospedeiro-Patógeno/efeitos dos fármacos , Transcrição Genética/efeitos dos fármacos , Animais , Apoptose/efeitos dos fármacos , Análise por Conglomerados , Células Dendríticas/efeitos dos fármacos , Células Dendríticas/imunologia , Células Dendríticas/microbiologia , Trato Gastrointestinal/microbiologia , Hematopoese/efeitos dos fármacos , Interações Hospedeiro-Patógeno/imunologia , Humanos , Imunidade Inata/efeitos dos fármacos , Lipopolissacarídeos/farmacologia , Camundongos , Ratos , Sistema Respiratório/microbiologia
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