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Articles 1 - 15 of 15

Full-Text Articles in Molecular Biology

Crispr Gene Editing In The Sea Squirt, Ciona Intestinalis, Evelyn Siler, Steven Irvine May 2018

Crispr Gene Editing In The Sea Squirt, Ciona Intestinalis, Evelyn Siler, Steven Irvine

Senior Honors Projects

Genetic manipulation has come a long way in the past ten years alone. Scientists have had access to gene editing techniques for decades, but until recently these methods have proven to be expensive and unpredictable. However, thanks to the development of a new, more efficient genome editing strategy called CRISPR/Cas9, more aggressive progress can now be made in genetics research.

CRISPR is not a machine or a physical tool, but rather it is a system that involves introducing a protein into a cell, along with a DNA segment that will attract the protein to a desired location on the ...


Multiple Molecular Mechanisms Rescue Mtdna Disease In C. Elegans, Suraiya Haroon, Annie Li, Jaye L. Weinert, Clark Fritsch, Nolan G. Ericson, Jasmine Alexander-Floyd, Bart P. Braeckman, Cole M. Haynes, Jason H. Bielas, Tali Gidalevitz, Marc Vermulst Mar 2018

Multiple Molecular Mechanisms Rescue Mtdna Disease In C. Elegans, Suraiya Haroon, Annie Li, Jaye L. Weinert, Clark Fritsch, Nolan G. Ericson, Jasmine Alexander-Floyd, Bart P. Braeckman, Cole M. Haynes, Jason H. Bielas, Tali Gidalevitz, Marc Vermulst

University of Massachusetts Medical School Faculty Publications

Genetic instability of the mitochondrial genome (mtDNA) plays an important role in human aging and disease. Thus far, it has proven difficult to develop successful treatment strategies for diseases that are caused by mtDNA instability. To address this issue, we developed a model of mtDNA disease in the nematode C. elegans, an animal model that can rapidly be screened for genes and biological pathways that reduce mitochondrial pathology. These worms recapitulate all the major hallmarks of mtDNA disease in humans, including increased mtDNA instability, loss of respiration, reduced neuromuscular function, and a shortened lifespan. We found that these phenotypes could ...


Quaternary Interactions And Supercoiling Modulate The Cooperative Dna Binding Of Agt, Manana Melikishvili, Michael G. Fried Jul 2017

Quaternary Interactions And Supercoiling Modulate The Cooperative Dna Binding Of Agt, Manana Melikishvili, Michael G. Fried

Center for Structural Biology Faculty Publications

Human O6-alkylguanine-DNA alkyltransferase (AGT) repairs mutagenic O6-alkylguanine and O4-alkylthymine adducts in single-stranded and duplex DNAs. The search for these lesions, through a vast excess of competing, unmodified genomic DNA, is a mechanistic challenge that may limit the repair rate in vivo. Here, we examine influences of DNA secondary structure and twist on protein–protein interactions in cooperative AGT complexes formed on lesion-free DNAs that model the unmodified parts of the genome. We used a new approach to resolve nearest neighbor (nn) and long-range (lr) components from the ensemble-average cooperativity, ωave. We found that ...


Dna Polymerase Zeta-Dependent Mutagenesis: Molecular Specificity, Extent Of Error-Prone Synthesis, And The Role Of Dntp Pools, Olga V. Kochenova Dec 2016

Dna Polymerase Zeta-Dependent Mutagenesis: Molecular Specificity, Extent Of Error-Prone Synthesis, And The Role Of Dntp Pools, Olga V. Kochenova

Theses & Dissertations

Despite multiple DNA repair pathways, DNA lesions can escape repair and compromise normal chromosomal replication, leading to genome instability. Cells utilize specialized low-fidelity Translesion Synthesis (TLS) DNA polymerases to bypass lesions and rescue arrested replication forks. TLS is a highly conserved two-step process that involves insertion of a nucleotide opposite a lesion and extension of the resulting aberrant primer terminus. The first step can be performed by both replicative and TLS DNA polymerases and, because of non-instructive DNA lesions, often results in a nucleotide misincorporation. The second step is almost exclusively catalyzed by DNA polymerase ζ ...


Systematic Experimental Determination Of Functional Constraints On Proteins And Adaptive Potential Of Mutations: A Dissertation, Li Jiang May 2016

Systematic Experimental Determination Of Functional Constraints On Proteins And Adaptive Potential Of Mutations: A Dissertation, Li Jiang

GSBS Dissertations and Theses

Sequence-function relationship is a fundamental question for many branches of modern biomedical research. It connects the primary sequence of proteins to the function of proteins and fitness of organisms, holding answers for critical questions such as functional consequences of mutations identified in whole genome sequencing and adaptive potential of fast evolving pathogenic viruses and microbes. Many different approaches have been developed to delineate the genotype-phenotype map for different proteins, but are generally limited by their throughput or precision. To systematically quantify the fitness of large numbers of mutations, I modified a novel high throughput mutational scanning approach (EMPIRIC) to investigate ...


The Decapping Scavenger Enzyme Dcs-1 Controls Microrna Levels In Caenorhabditis Elegans, Gabriel Bosse, Stefan Ruegger, Maria Ow, Alejandro Vasquez-Rifo, Evelyne Rondeau, Victor Ambros, Helge Grosshans, Martin Simard Oct 2015

The Decapping Scavenger Enzyme Dcs-1 Controls Microrna Levels In Caenorhabditis Elegans, Gabriel Bosse, Stefan Ruegger, Maria Ow, Alejandro Vasquez-Rifo, Evelyne Rondeau, Victor Ambros, Helge Grosshans, Martin Simard

Victor R. Ambros

In metazoans, microRNAs play a critical role in the posttranscriptional regulation of genes required for cell proliferation and differentiation. MicroRNAs themselves are regulated by a multitude of mechanisms influencing their transcription and posttranscriptional maturation. However, there is only sparse knowledge on pathways regulating the mature, functional form of microRNA. Here, we uncover the implication of the decapping scavenger protein DCS-1 in the control of microRNA turnover. In Caenorhabditis elegans, mutations in dcs-1 increase the levels of functional microRNAs. We demonstrate that DCS-1 interacts with the exonuclease XRN-1 to promote microRNA degradation in an independent manner from its known decapping scavenger ...


Mutations In Conserved Residues Of The C. Elegans Microrna Argonaute Alg-1 Identify Separable Functions In Alg-1 Mirisc Loading And Target Repression, Anna Y. Zinovyeva, Samir Bouasker, Martin J. Simard, Christopher M. Hammell, Victor R. Ambros Oct 2015

Mutations In Conserved Residues Of The C. Elegans Microrna Argonaute Alg-1 Identify Separable Functions In Alg-1 Mirisc Loading And Target Repression, Anna Y. Zinovyeva, Samir Bouasker, Martin J. Simard, Christopher M. Hammell, Victor R. Ambros

Victor R. Ambros

microRNAs function in diverse developmental and physiological processes by regulating target gene expression at the post-transcriptional level. ALG-1 is one of two Caenorhabditis elegans Argonautes (ALG-1 and ALG-2) that together are essential for microRNA biogenesis and function. Here, we report the identification of novel antimorphic (anti) alleles of ALG-1 as suppressors of lin-28(lf) precocious developmental phenotypes. The alg-1(anti) mutations broadly impair the function of many microRNAs and cause dosage-dependent phenotypes that are more severe than the complete loss of ALG-1. ALG-1(anti) mutant proteins are competent for promoting Dicer cleavage of microRNA precursors and for associating with and ...


Micrornas: Genetically Sensitized Worms Reveal New Secrets, Victor Ambros Oct 2015

Micrornas: Genetically Sensitized Worms Reveal New Secrets, Victor Ambros

Victor R. Ambros

Why do many microRNA gene mutants display no evident phenotype? Multiply mutant worms that are selectively impaired in genetic regulatory network activities have been used to uncover previously unknown functions for numerous Caenorhabditis elegans microRNAs.


A Conserved Three-Nucleotide Core Motif Defines Musashi Rna Binding Specificity, Nancy Zearfoss, Laura Deveau, Carina Clingman, Eric Schmidt, Emily Johnson, Francesca Massi, Sean Ryder Sep 2015

A Conserved Three-Nucleotide Core Motif Defines Musashi Rna Binding Specificity, Nancy Zearfoss, Laura Deveau, Carina Clingman, Eric Schmidt, Emily Johnson, Francesca Massi, Sean Ryder

Sean P. Ryder

Musashi (MSI) family proteins control cell proliferation and differentiation in many biological systems. They are overexpressed in tumors of several origins, and their expression level correlates with poor prognosis. MSI proteins control gene expression by binding RNA and regulating its translation. They contain two RNA recognition motif (RRM) domains, which recognize a defined sequence element. The relative contribution of each nucleotide to the binding affinity and specificity is unknown. We analyzed the binding specificity of three MSI family RRM domains using a quantitative fluorescence anisotropy assay. We found that the core element driving recognition is the sequence UAG. Nucleotides outside ...


Evolution Of The Influenza A Virus Genome During Development Of Oseltamivir Resistance In Vitro, Nicholas Renzette, Daniel Caffrey, Konstantin Zeldovich, Ping Liu, Glen Gallagher, Daniel Aiello, Alyssa Porter, Evelyn Kurt-Jones, Daniel Bolon, Yu-Ping Poh, Jeffrey Jensen, Celia Schiffer, Timothy Kowalik, Robert Finberg, Jennifer Wang Mar 2015

Evolution Of The Influenza A Virus Genome During Development Of Oseltamivir Resistance In Vitro, Nicholas Renzette, Daniel Caffrey, Konstantin Zeldovich, Ping Liu, Glen Gallagher, Daniel Aiello, Alyssa Porter, Evelyn Kurt-Jones, Daniel Bolon, Yu-Ping Poh, Jeffrey Jensen, Celia Schiffer, Timothy Kowalik, Robert Finberg, Jennifer Wang

Glen R. Gallagher

Influenza A virus (IAV) is a major cause of morbidity and mortality throughout the world. Current antiviral therapies include oseltamivir, a neuraminidase inhibitor that prevents the release of nascent viral particles from infected cells. However, the IAV genome can evolve rapidly, and oseltamivir resistance mutations have been detected in numerous clinical samples. Using an in vitro evolution platform and whole-genome population sequencing, we investigated the population genomics of IAV during the development of oseltamivir resistance. Strain A/Brisbane/59/2007 (H1N1) was grown in Madin-Darby canine kidney cells with or without escalating concentrations of oseltamivir over serial passages. Following drug ...


Evolution Of The Influenza A Virus Genome During Development Of Oseltamivir Resistance In Vitro, Nicholas Renzette, Daniel R. Caffrey, Konstantin B. Zeldovich, Ping Liu, Glen R. Gallagher, Daniel Aiello, Alyssa J. Porter, Evelyn A. Kurt-Jones, Daniel N. Bolon, Yu-Ping Poh, Jeffrey D. Jensen, Celia A. Schiffer, Timothy F. Kowalik, Robert W. Finberg, Jennifer P. Wang Jan 2015

Evolution Of The Influenza A Virus Genome During Development Of Oseltamivir Resistance In Vitro, Nicholas Renzette, Daniel R. Caffrey, Konstantin B. Zeldovich, Ping Liu, Glen R. Gallagher, Daniel Aiello, Alyssa J. Porter, Evelyn A. Kurt-Jones, Daniel N. Bolon, Yu-Ping Poh, Jeffrey D. Jensen, Celia A. Schiffer, Timothy F. Kowalik, Robert W. Finberg, Jennifer P. Wang

Celia A. Schiffer

Influenza A virus (IAV) is a major cause of morbidity and mortality throughout the world. Current antiviral therapies include oseltamivir, a neuraminidase inhibitor that prevents the release of nascent viral particles from infected cells. However, the IAV genome can evolve rapidly, and oseltamivir resistance mutations have been detected in numerous clinical samples. Using an in vitro evolution platform and whole-genome population sequencing, we investigated the population genomics of IAV during the development of oseltamivir resistance. Strain A/Brisbane/59/2007 (H1N1) was grown in Madin-Darby canine kidney cells with or without escalating concentrations of oseltamivir over serial passages. Following drug ...


Mutations In Conserved Residues Of The C. Elegans Microrna Argonaute Alg-1 Identify Separable Functions In Alg-1 Mirisc Loading And Target Repression, Anna Y. Zinovyeva, Samir Bouasker, Martin J. Simard, Christopher M. Hammell, Victor R. Ambros Apr 2014

Mutations In Conserved Residues Of The C. Elegans Microrna Argonaute Alg-1 Identify Separable Functions In Alg-1 Mirisc Loading And Target Repression, Anna Y. Zinovyeva, Samir Bouasker, Martin J. Simard, Christopher M. Hammell, Victor R. Ambros

Program in Molecular Medicine Publications

microRNAs function in diverse developmental and physiological processes by regulating target gene expression at the post-transcriptional level. ALG-1 is one of two Caenorhabditis elegans Argonautes (ALG-1 and ALG-2) that together are essential for microRNA biogenesis and function. Here, we report the identification of novel antimorphic (anti) alleles of ALG-1 as suppressors of lin-28(lf) precocious developmental phenotypes. The alg-1(anti) mutations broadly impair the function of many microRNAs and cause dosage-dependent phenotypes that are more severe than the complete loss of ALG-1. ALG-1(anti) mutant proteins are competent for promoting Dicer cleavage of microRNA precursors and for associating with and ...


Mutation And Complementation Of A Cellulose Synthase (Cesa) Gene, Ahmed Y. El-Araby May 2012

Mutation And Complementation Of A Cellulose Synthase (Cesa) Gene, Ahmed Y. El-Araby

Senior Honors Projects

Cellulose is a carbohydrate polymer that is composed of repeating glucose subunits. Being the most abundant organic compound in the biosphere and comprising a large percentage of all plant biomass, cellulose is extremely plentiful and has a significant role in nature. Cellulose is present in plant cell walls, in commercial products such as those made from wood or cotton, and is of interest to the biofuel industry as a potential alternative fuel source. Although indigestible by humans, cellulose is nutritionally valuable, serving as a dietary fiber. Because of its ubiquity and importance in many areas, studying cellulose will prove to ...


A Feedback Circuit Involving Let-7-Family Mirnas And Daf-12 Integrates Environmental Signals And Developmental Timing In Caenorhabditis Elegans, Christopher M. Hammell, Xantha Karp, Victor R. Ambros Nov 2009

A Feedback Circuit Involving Let-7-Family Mirnas And Daf-12 Integrates Environmental Signals And Developmental Timing In Caenorhabditis Elegans, Christopher M. Hammell, Xantha Karp, Victor R. Ambros

Victor R. Ambros

Animal development is remarkably robust; cell fates are specified with spatial and temporal precision despite physiological and environmental contingencies. Favorable conditions cause Caenorhabditis elegans to develop rapidly through four larval stages (L1-L4) to the reproductive adult. In unfavorable conditions, L2 larvae can enter the developmentally quiescent, stress-resistant dauer larva stage, enabling them to survive for prolonged periods before completing development. A specific progression of cell division and differentiation events occurs with fidelity during the larval stages, regardless of whether an animal undergoes continuous or dauer-interrupted development. The temporal patterning of developmental events is controlled by the heterochronic genes, whose products ...


The C. Elegans Heterochronic Gene Lin-46 Affects Developmental Timing At Two Larval Stages And Encodes A Relative Of The Scaffolding Protein Gephyrin, A. S.-R. Pepper, Jill E. Mccane, Kevin Kemper, Dennis Au Yeung, Rosalind C. Lee, Victor Ambros, Eric G. Moss Apr 2004

The C. Elegans Heterochronic Gene Lin-46 Affects Developmental Timing At Two Larval Stages And Encodes A Relative Of The Scaffolding Protein Gephyrin, A. S.-R. Pepper, Jill E. Mccane, Kevin Kemper, Dennis Au Yeung, Rosalind C. Lee, Victor Ambros, Eric G. Moss

Open Dartmouth: Peer-reviewed articles by Dartmouth faculty

The succession of developmental events in the C. elegans larva is governed by the heterochronic genes. When mutated, these genes cause either precocious or retarded developmental phenotypes, in which stage-specific patterns of cell division and differentiation are either skipped or reiterated, respectively. We identified a new heterochronic gene, lin-46, from mutations that suppress the precocious phenotypes caused by mutations in the heterochronic genes lin-14 and lin-28. lin-46 mutants on their own display retarded phenotypes in which cell division patterns are reiterated and differentiation is prevented in certain cell lineages. Our analysis indicates that lin-46 acts at a step immediately downstream ...