In the study on the origin of Japanese, one of main unsolved problems is the transition from the Jomon people to the Yayoi people. The main difficulty in solving this problem has been the lack of suitable skeletal materials belonging to the time between the two periods, i.e. the final Jomon and the early Yayoi Periods. Therefore, we know few details of the transition period. It is important to know who carried out a drastic change of the Yayoi culture during this transitional period, i.e. the native Jomon people or the immigrant people. By introducing population genetic models, we show that a view that the immigrant people had a significant genetic contribution to the origin of Japanese is compatible with results from anthropological and archeological studies. This result implies that the immigrant people were mainly responsible for the drastic cultural change during the transitional period.
When the dmd gene of bacteriophage T4 is mutated, many T4 late genes are post-transcriptionally silenced because of rapid mRNA degradation. Here we show that the host hfq gene is involved in the rapid mRNA degradation in a dmd mutant. A disruption of the hfq gene caused weak but significant effects on the stability of late-gene mRNA, the late-gene expression and the growth of a dmd mutant. By probing with the soc gene, we found that disruption of the hfq gene impaired the translation-independent mRNA degradation, one of two mechanisms promoting rapid mRNA degradation. We also showed that purified Hfq protein bound stoichiometrically to soc RNA. These results strongly suggest that the hfq gene has a stimulatory role in dmd mutant-specific mRNA degradation.
MPC1/GPI13/YLL031C, one of the genes involved in the addition of phospho-ethanolamine to the glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI) anchor core, is an essential gene. Three available temperature-sensitive mutant alleles, mpc1-3, mpc1-4, and mpc1-5, displayed different phenotypes to each other and, correspondingly, these mutants were found to have different mutations in the MPC1 ORF. Temperature-sensitivity of mpc1-5 mutants was suppressed by 5 mM ZnSO4 and by 5 mM MnCl2. Multicopy suppressors were isolated from mpc1-5 mutant. Suppressors commonly effective to mpc1-4 and mpc1-5 mutations are PSD1, encoding phosphatidylserine decarboxylase, and ECM33, which were found to suppress the temperature-sensitive phenotype shown by the fsr2-1 and las21Δ mutants, those of which have defects in the GPI anchor synthesis. PSD2, encoding another phosphatidylserine decarboxylase that is localized in Golgi/vacuole, was found to be able to serve as a multicopy suppressor of mpc1 and fsr2-1 mutants but not of the las21 Δ mutant. In contrast to psd1Δ, psd2Δ showed a synthetic growth defect with mpc1 mutants but not with fsr2-1 or las21Δ. Furthermore, psd1Δ psd2Δ mpc1 triple mutants did not form colonies on nutrient medium unless ethanolamine was supplied to the medium, whereas psd1Δ psd2 Δ fsr2-1 or psd1Δ psd2 Δ las21Δ triple mutants grew on nutrient medium without supplementation of ethanolamine. These observations suggest that Mpc1 preferentially utilizes phosphatidylethanolamine produced by Psd2 that is localized in Golgi/vacuole. fsr2-1dpl1 Δ psd1Δ strains showed slower growth than fsr2-1dpl1Δ psd2 Δ, suggesting that Fsr2 enzyme depends more on Dpl1 and Psd1 for production of phosphatidylethanolamine. Las21 did not show preference for the metabolic pathway to produce phosphatidylethanolamine.
Previous studies based on morphological and molecular markers indicated that there are two cultivated and five wild rice species within the Oryza genus with the AA genome. In the cultivated rice species, Oryza sativa, a retroposon named p-SINE1 has been identified. Some of the p-SINE1 members characterized previously showed interspecific insertion polymorphisms in the species with the AA genome. In this study, we identified new p-SINE1 members showing interspecific insertion polymorphisms from representative strains of four wild rice species with the AA genome: O. barthii, O. glumaepatula, O. longistaminata, and O. meridionalis. Some of these members were present only in strains of one species, whereas the others were present in strains of two or more species. The p-SINE1 insertion patterns in the strains of the Asian and African cultivated rice species O. sativa and O. glaberrima were very similar to those of the Asian and African wild rice species O. rufipogon and O. barthii, respectively. This is consistent with the previous hypothesis that O. sativa and O. glaberrima are derived from specific wild rice species. Phylogenetic analysis based on the p-SINE1 insertion patterns showed that the strains of each of the five wild rice species formed a cluster. The strains of O. longistaminata appear to be distantly related to those of O. meridionalis. The strains of these two species appear to be distantly related to those of three other species, O. rufipogon, O. barthii and O. glumaepatula. The latter three species are closely related to one another with O. barthii and O. glumaepatula being most closely related. A phylogenetic tree including a hypothetical ancestor with all loci empty for p-SINE1 insertion showed that the strains of O. longistaminata are related most closely to the hypothetical ancestor. This indicates that O. longistaminata and O. meridionalis diverged early on, whereas the other species diverged relatively recently, and suggests that the Oryza genus with AA genome might have originated in Africa, rather than in Asia.
A recombinant Potato virus X (PVX) vector, pTXS.FtsH, harboring partial sequence of FtsH gene of Nicotiana benthamiana was constructed to silence the expression of endogenous FtsH homologous gene in N. benthamiana. Inoculation with in vitro runoff transcript of pTXS.FtsH to N. benthamiana plants allowed silencing of FtsH, causing striking bleaching of upper leaves reminiscent of var2 mutant phenotype of Arabidopsis thaliana. FtsH-silenced plants exhibited no resistance against Tobacco mosaic virus (TMV) and a phytopathogenic fungus Botrytis cinerea. Virus-induced gene silencing (VIGS) of N. benthamiana with PVX as demonstrated here would be an efficient and rapid method to study the function of other elements of photosystem II (PSII) in planta.
Seed coat color in soybeans is determined by the I (Inhibitor) locus. The dominant I allele inhibits seed coat pigmentation, and it has been suggested that there is a correlation between the inhibition of pigmentation by the I allele and chalcone synthase (CHS) gene silencing in the seed coat. Analysis of spontaneous mutations from I to i has shown that these mutations are closely related to the deletion of one of the CHS genes (designated ICHS1). In soybeans with the I/I genotype (cv. Miyagi shirome), a truncated form of the CHS gene (CHS3) is located in an inverse orientation 680 bp upstream of ICHS1, and it was previously suggested that the truncated CHS3- ICHS1 cluster might be involved in CHS gene silencing in the seed coat. In the current study, the truncated CHS3- ICHS1 cluster was compared with the corresponding region of pigmented seed coat mutants in which I had changed to i in Miyagi shirome and in the strain Karikei 584. In the Karikei 584 mutant, the truncated CHS3-ICHS1 cluster was retained and the sequence diverged at a point immediately upstream (32 bp) of this cluster. The sequences upstream of the points of divergence in both mutants almost perfectly matched a part of the registered sequence in a soybean BAC clone containing the soybean cyst nematode resistance-associated gene, and inspection of the sequences suggested that the sequence divergence of the CHS gene in the Karikei 584 and Miyagi shirome mutants was due to an unequal crossing-over via 4-bp or 5-bp short repeats, respectively.
Molecular characterization of 3 alleles of the waxy gene from a non-waxy strain "Shikoku hadaka No. 84" (SH84), an indigenous waxy strain "Mochimugi D" (MMD), and an artificial waxy mutant strain "Shikoku hadaka No. 97" (SH97) of barley (Hordeum vulgare ssp. vulgare) was performed via a PCR direct sequencing strategy. The 3 haplotypes were analyzed in terms of single nucleotide polymorphisms, insertion/deletion mutations, and simple sequence repeat polymorphisms. In comparison with the barley non-waxy gene sequence deposited in the public DNA database, 110 polymorphic sites were found in the 5,190-bp sequenced region of the non-waxy strain SH84. A 418-bp deletion in the 5' non-coding sequence was identified in the indigenous waxy strain MMD. Except for the deletion in the promoter region, the spontaneous mutant wax allele and non-waxy allele were identical. Such highly conserved sequences provide evidence for the recent occurrence of a deletion event in the cultivated barley gene pool. Compared to the original variety SH84, induced waxy mutant SH97 had a base substitution of a C to T in the exon 5, which converting Gln-89 of the wild-type gene into a stop codon, suggesting the involvement of a nonsense-mediated mRNA decay. These results will be helpful for understanding the mechanism of the variable amylose content in waxy cultivars of cereal species.
In order to assess the genetic diversity and genetic relationships among the six commercial pig breeds including the Korean native pig, we performed an amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) analysis. Applying the three EcoRI/TagI primer combinations to 54 individual pig samples out of six breeds, a total of 186 AFLP bands were generated, 67 (36%) of which were identified as polymorphic bands. From these polymorphic bands, the three estimates (percentage of polymorphic loci, Neis heterozygosity and Shannon index) of genetic diversity, GST estimates, Neis unbiased genetic distance and two indices of genetic similarity were calculated. From all the calculations of genetic diversity, the lowest genetic diversity was exhibited in the Korean native pig, and the highest in the Chinese Yanbian pig. Given the mean GST value (GST = 0.390) across all pigs examined, levels of apparent breed subdivision were considerable. A UPGMA tree of individuals based on Jaccards similarity index showed that the Korean native pig formed a distinct cluster from the other five pigs. In addition, the tree displayed that all the individuals except for six individuals were grouped into their breeds. Principal component analysis based on the binary data matrix of either presence or absence confirmed the distinctness of the Korean native pig from the other pigs. Our results indicate that the Korean native pig has a low level of genetic diversity and is distinct from the five pig breeds, confirming the results from previous microsatellite data. The findings also suggest that AFLP analysis may be a valuable tool for revealing genetic relationships and genetic diversity among different pig breeds.
In the previous report, we demonstrated the origin of eukaryotic cell nuclei as the symbiosis of Archaea in Bacteria by the newly developed "Homology-Hit Analysis". In that case, we counted yeast Open Reading Frames (ORFs) showing the highest similarity to a bacterial ORF as orthologous ORFs (Orthologous ORFs were produced by speciation from a common ancestor, and have the highest similarity to each other.) by comparing whole ORFs of yeast with those of individual bacteria. However, we could not count all yeast ORFs showing the highest similarity to a bacterial ORF in functional categories of yeast. Therefore, the origin of ORFs in the functional categories of yeast could not be inferred strictly. Here, we have improved the method for detecting orthologous ORFs. In this method, we count the numbers of ORF with the highest similarity between individual yeast functional categories and individual bacteria as orthologous ORFs. By this method, it was possible to detect the correct orthologous ORFs and to infer the origins of the functional categories in eukaryotic cells. As a result, two categories, assembly of protein complexes and DNA repair were newly judged to be of Archaeal origin, while five categories, lipid (fatty-acid and isoprenoid) metabolism, protein folding and stabilization, signal transduction, organization of the plasma membrane and organization of the cytoplasm, were newly judged to be of Bacterial origin. On the other hand, the origins of two categories (meiosis and cellular import, which were determined in the previous analysis) could not be judged. It is considered that functional categories related to the nucleus have origins common to Archaea, while those related to the cytoplasm have origins common to Bacteria. From these data including the origin of plasma membrane, it was further clarified that cell nucleus originated by the symbiosis of Archaea in Bacteria.
Here we identified a novel transcript in mouse that is transcribed from the portions of two independent genes, U2af1-rs1 and Murr1, and we designated it U2mu. The U2af1-rs1 gene is located in the intron and transcribed in the opposite direction from the Murr1 gene on the proximal region of mouse chromosome 11. The U2mu cDNA sequence is derived from three genomic regions - an intron of the Murr1 gene, an antisense sequence of U2af1-rs1 gene, and the last exon of Murr1 gene - in the order of 5' to 3'. The U2mu transcript of 2.8 kb is expressed ubiquitously in adult mice. It is transcribed biallelically, and is not imprinted, in neonatal and adult mice.