The degradation of mRNA is crucial for the rapid shift of bacteriophage T4 gene expression from early to late. The present study was conducted to investigate whether T4 mRNA is polyadenylated or not, because polyadenylation is known to facilitate the degradation of mRNA in Escherichia coli cells. Total RNA extracted from T4-infected cells was subjected to self-circularization or intermolecular ligation by T4 RNA ligase, and a region containing the 3'-5' junction was amplified by RT-PCR. Cloning and sequencing as well as the length distribution of amplified DNA fragments revealed no adenines at the 3'-ends of uvsY and soc RNAs. The present result suggests that T4 mRNA is not significantly adenylated.
We identified a novel structure-specific endonuclease in Pyrococcus furiosus. This nuclease contains two distinct domains, which are similar to the DEAH helicase family at the N-terminal two-third and the XPF endonuclease superfamily at the C-terminal one-third of the protein, respectively. The C-terminal domain has an endonuclease activity cleaving the DNA strand at the 5'-side of nicked or flapped positions in the duplex DNA. The nuclease also incises in the proximity of the 5'-side of a branch point in the template strand for leading synthesis in the fork-structured DNA. The N-terminal helicase may work cooperatively to change the fork structure suitable for cleavage by the C-terminal endonuclease. This protein, designated as Hef (helicase-associated endonuclease for fork-structured DNA), may be a prototypical enzyme for resolving stalled forks during DNA replication, as well as working at nucleotide excision repair.
Structural heterogeneity depicted as heteroplasmy of the mitochondrial (mt) transcriptional unit of nad3-orf156 (atp8) was studied in a nucleus-cytoplasm (NC) hybrid of Triticum timopheevi with the D plasmon from the maternal Aegilops squarrosa and compared with that of the parental lines. The tetraploid NC hybrid and the parental lines both showed varying degrees of heteroplasmy in this mtDNA region. The G plasmon of the paternal T. timopheevi possessed five sequence types, while two sequence types were detected in the D plasmon of Ae. squarrosa. The NC hybrid possessed all the five sequence types identical to those of the paternal parent in a 30% relative stochiometry. The remaining 70% comprised only one of the two maternal sequence types, suggestive of strong and selective NC interaction. No novel sequence types were detected and the relative stoichiometries of the paternal sequence types were conserved in the NC hybrid. No paternal-identical or -related sequences were detected in the maternal D plasmon. These results provide evidence of the paternal transmission of the mtDNA and possibly account for the origin of the observed mtDNA heteroplasmy in the NC hybrid.
Sixty-seven sequence-tagged site (STS) markers were identified from partial sequences of cDNA clones obtained from the inner bark of Cryptomeria japonica. Polymorphisms of the STSs were investigated for the parental clones of a mapping population, Haara and Kumotooshi, using both single-strand conformation polymorphism (SSCP) and sequencing analysis. Twenty-two STSs showed nucleotide differences between Haara and Kumotooshi, of which 19 STS differences were detectable under the electrophoresis conditions we used here. We also analyzed SSC-polymorphism in 10 additional clones derived from various Japanese regions to evaluate the usefulness of the STSs developed here among other populations of C. japonica. Twenty-five, about 40%, of the STSs showed polymorphism under selected electrophoresis conditions. The genotype segregation for 19 STSs was investigated among the Haara × Kumotooshi F1 population, and these STS markers were mapped on a linkage map. SSCP analysis of STSs was efficient in terms of cost and time, and it allows detection of a sufficiently high proportion of polymorphisms to provide a convenient means for mapping of expressed sequences on a linkage map and for studying various aspects of population genetics.
We analyzed the genomic P elements of 57 wild-derived Drosophila melanogaster isofemale lines from Africa, Australia and Asia. All carried many P sequences per genome, and the full-size P and the internally deleted KP elements were very common or predominant in the populations. The genomic content of full-size P and KP elements does not correlate well with the P transposition-inducing and -repressing abilities of a line. Our results show that a large majority of type I repressor elements are full-size P elements, and almost all type II repressor elements are KP elements in the natural populations of D. melanogaster from these parts of the world.
Adopting a mating system involving two different Robertsonian translocations with monobrachial homology, we studied the early development of mouse embryos trisomic or tetrasomic for chromosome 11. A developmental delay of 12-24 hours was evident in trisomic embryos at embryonic day (E)7.5, whereas tetrasomic embryos apparently had stopped growth by E6.5 without formation of extraembryonic structures. This extremely severe developmental abnormality found in tetrasomic embryos is similar to that reported in embryos having two active X chromosomes in extraembryonic cell lineages. Autosomal tetrasomy, but not autosomal trisomy, can lead to such early developmental errors. Thus, a reasonable inference would be that the X chromosome is twice as active as the autosome. Probably, the X chromosome became upregulated in response to the evolutionary necessity of minimizing haplo-insufficiency brought about by miniaturization of the Y chromosome.
Lotus japonicus has received increased attention as a potential model legume plant. In order to study gene expression in reproductive organs and to identify genes that play a crucial function in sexual reproduction, we constructed a cDNA library from immature flower buds containing anthers at the stage of developing tapetum cells in L. japonicus, and characterized 919 expressed sequence tags (ESTs) randomly selected from a cDNA library of the immature flower buds. The 919 ESTs analyzed were clustered into 821 non-redundant EST groups. As a result of a database search, 436 groups (53%) out of the 821 groups showed sequence similarity to genes registered in the public database. Out of these 436 groups, 109 groups showed similarity to genes encoding hypothetical proteins whose function had not yet been estimated. Three hundred eighty five groups (47%) showed no significant homology to known sequences and were classified as novel sequences. A comparison of 821 non-redundant EST sequences and EST sequences derived from the whole plant L. japonicus revealed that 474 EST sequences derived from immature flower buds were not found in the EST sequences of the whole plant. In order to confirm the expression pattern of potential reproductive-organ specific EST clones, nine clones, which were not matched to ESTs derived from the whole plant, were selected, and RT-PCR analysis was performed on these clones. As a result of RT-PCR, we found two novel anther specific clones. One clone was homologous to a gene encoding human cleft lip and palate associated transmembrane protein (CLPTM1) like protein, and the other clone did not show a significant similarity to any genes deposited in the public database. These results indicate that ESTs analyzed here represent a valuable resource for finding reproductive-organ specific genes in Lotus japonicus.
Large insert genomic bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) libraries were constructed from a basal chordate, the ascidian Ciona intestinalis. Insert analyses of randomly selected clones indicated that in the first library the mean insert size was 135 kb and predicted a 15-fold coverage of the Ciona genome, and in the second library the mean insert size was 165 kb and predicted a 5-fold coverage of the genome. These first large insert genomic libraries of the ascidian should increase the speed of genomic analyses of basal chordates.