Can-Seq: a PCR and DNA sequencing strategy for identifying new alleles of known and candidate genes.
ABSTRACT: Background:Forward genetic screens are a powerful approach for identifying the genes contributing to a trait of interest. However, mutants arising in genes already known can obscure the identification of new genes contributing to the trait. Here, we describe a strategy called Candidate gene-Sequencing (Can-Seq) for rapidly identifying and filtering out mutants carrying new alleles of known and candidate genes. Results:We carried out a forward genetic screen and identified 40 independent Arabidopsis mutants with defects in systemic spreading of RNA interference (RNAi), or more specifically in root-to-shoot transmission of post-transcriptional gene silencing (rtp). To classify the mutants as either representing a new allele of a known or candidate gene versus carrying a mutation in an undiscovered gene, bulk genomic DNA from up to 23 independent mutants was used as template to amplify a collection of 47 known or candidate genes. These amplified sequences were combined into Can-Seq libraries and deep sequenced. Subsequently, mutations in the known and candidate genes were identified using a custom Snakemake script (https://github.com/Carroll-Lab/can_seq), and PCR zygosity tests were then designed and used to identify the individual mutants carrying each mutation. Using this approach, we showed that 28 of the 40 rtp mutants carried homozygous nonsense, missense or splice site mutations in one or more of the 47 known or candidate genes. We conducted complementation tests to demonstrate that several of the candidate mutations were responsible for the rtp defect. Importantly, by exclusion, the Can-Seq pipeline also identified rtp mutants that did not carry a causative mutation in any of the 47 known and candidate genes, and these mutants represent an undiscovered gene(s) required for systemic RNAi. Conclusions:Can-Seq offers an accurate, cost-effective method for classifying new mutants into known versus unknown genes. It has several advantages over existing genetic and DNA sequencing approaches that are currently being used in forward genetic screens for gene discovery. Using Can-Seq in conjunction with map-based gene cloning is a cost-effective approach towards identifying the full complement of genes contributing to a trait of interest.
Project description:In pursuing our long-term goals of identifying causal genes for mutant phenotypes in maize, we have developed a new, phenotype-to-genotype approach for transposon-based resources, and used this to identify candidate genes that co-segregate with visible kernel mutants. The strategy incorporates a redesigned Mu-seq protocol (sequence-based, transposon mapping) for high-throughput identification of individual plants carrying Mu insertions. Forward-genetic Mu-seq also involves a genetic pipeline for generating families that segregate for mutants of interest, and grid designs for concurrent analysis of genotypes in multiple families. Critically, this approach not only eliminates gene-specific PCR genotyping, but also profiles all Mu-insertions in hundreds of individuals simultaneously. Here, we employ this scalable approach to study 12 families that showed Mendelian segregation of visible seed mutants. These families were analyzed in parallel, and 7 showed clear co-segregation between the selected phenotype and a Mu insertion in a specific gene. Results were confirmed by PCR. Mutant genes that associated with kernel phenotypes include those encoding: a new allele of Whirly1 (a transcription factor with high affinity for organellar and single-stranded DNA), a predicted splicing factor with a KH domain, a small protein with unknown function, a putative mitochondrial transcription-termination factor, and three proteins with pentatricopeptide repeat domains (predicted mitochondrial). Identification of such associations allows mutants to be prioritized for subsequent research based on their functional annotations. Forward-genetic Mu-seq also allows a systematic dissection of mutant classes with similar phenotypes. In the present work, a high proportion of kernel phenotypes were associated with mutations affecting organellar gene transcription and processing, highlighting the importance and non-redundance of genes controlling these aspects of seed development.
Project description:A new Escherichia coli phage, named Rtp, was isolated and shown to be closely related to phage T1. Electron microscopy revealed that phage Rtp has a morphologically unique tail tip consisting of four leaf-like structures arranged in a rosette, whereas phage T1 has thinner, flexible leaves that thicken toward the ends. In contrast to T1, Rtp did not require FhuA and TonB for infection. The 46.2-kb genome of phage Rtp encodes 75 open reading frames, 47 of which are homologous to phage T1 genes. Like phage T1, phage Rtp encodes a large number of small genes at the genome termini that exhibit no sequence similarity to known genes. Six predicted genes larger than 300 nucleotides in the highly homologous region of Rtp are not found in T1. Two predicted HNH endonucleases are encoded at positions different from those in phage T1. The sequence similarity of rtp37, -38, -39, -41, -42, and -43 to equally arranged genes of lambdoid phages suggests a common tail assembly initiation complex. Protein Rtp43 is homologous to the lambda J protein, which determines lambda host specificity. Since the two proteins differ most in the C-proximal area, where the binding site to the LamB receptor resides in the J protein, we propose that Rtp43 contributes to Rtp host specificity. Lipoproteins similar to the predicted lipoprotein Rtp45 are found in a number of phages (encoded by cor genes) in which they prevent superinfection by inactivating the receptors. We propose that, similar to the proposed function of the phage T5 lipoprotein, Rtp45 prevents inactivation of Rtp by adsorption to its receptor during cells lysis. Rtp52 is a putative transcriptional regulator, for which 10 conserved inverted repeats were identified upstream of genes in the Rtp genome. In contrast, the much larger E. coli genome has only one such repeat sequence.
Project description:With the wide availability of whole-genome sequencing (WGS), genetic mapping has become the rate-limiting step, inhibiting unbiased forward genetics in even the most tractable model organisms. We introduce a rapid deconvolution resource and method for untagged causative mutations after mutagenesis, screens, and WGS in Escherichia coli. We created Deconvoluter-ordered libraries with selectable insertions every 50 kb in the E. coli genome. The Deconvoluter method uses these for replacement of untagged mutations in the genome using a phage-P1-based gene-replacement strategy. We validate the Deconvoluter resource by deconvolution of 17 of 17 phenotype-altering mutations from a screen of N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea-induced mutants. The Deconvoluter resource permits rapid unbiased screens and gene/function identification and will enable exploration of functions of essential genes and undiscovered genes/sites/alleles not represented in existing deletion collections. This resource for unbiased forward-genetic screens with mapping-by-sequencing ('forward genomics') demonstrates a strategy that could similarly enable rapid screens in many other microbes.
Project description:Rice field art is a large-scale art form in which people design rice fields using various kinds of ornamental rice plants with different leaf colors. Leaf color-related genes play an important role in the study of chlorophyll biosynthesis, chloroplast structure and function, and anthocyanin biosynthesis. Despite the role of different metabolites in the traditional relationship between leaf and color, comprehensive color-specific metabolite studies of ornamental rice have been limited. We performed whole-genome resequencing and transcriptomic analysis of regulatory patterns and genetic diversity among different rice cultivars to discover new genetic mechanisms that promote enhanced levels of various leaf colors. We resequenced the genomes of 10 rice leaf-color accessions to an average of 40× reads depth and >95% coverage and performed 30 RNA-seq experiments using the 10 rice accessions sampled at three developmental stages. The sequencing results yielded a total of 1,814 × 106 reads and identified an average of 713,114 SNPs per rice accession. Based on our analysis of the DNA variation and gene expression, we selected 47 candidate genes. We used an integrated analysis of the whole-genome resequencing data and the RNA-seq data to divide the candidate genes into two groups: genes related to macronutrient (i.e., magnesium and sulfur) transport and genes related to flavonoid pathways, including anthocyanidin biosynthesis. We verified the candidate genes with quantitative real-time PCR using transgenic T-DNA insertion mutants. Our study demonstrates the potential of integrated screening methods combined with genetic-variation and transcriptomic data to isolate genes involved in complex biosynthetic networks and pathways.
Project description:To better understand maize endosperm filling and maturation, we used ?-irradiation of the B73 maize reference line to generate mutants with opaque endosperm and reduced kernel fill phenotypes, and created a population of 1788 lines including 39 Mo17 × F2s showing stable, segregating, and viable kernel phenotypes. For molecular characterization of the mutants, we developed a novel functional genomics platform that combined bulked segregant RNA and exome sequencing (BSREx-seq) to map causative mutations and identify candidate genes within mapping intervals. To exemplify the utility of the mutants and provide proof-of-concept for the bioinformatics platform, we present detailed characterization of line 937, an opaque mutant harboring a 6203 bp in-frame deletion covering six exons within the Opaque-1 gene. In addition, we describe mutant line 146 which contains a 4.8 kb intragene deletion within the Sugary-1 gene and line 916 in which an 8.6 kb deletion knocks out a Cyclin A2 gene. The publically available algorithm developed in this work improves the identification of causative deletions and its corresponding gaps within mapping peaks. This study demonstrates the utility of ?-irradiation for forward genetics in large nondense genomes such as maize since deletions often affect single genes. Furthermore, we show how this classical mutagenesis method becomes applicable for functional genomics when combined with state-of-the-art genomics tools.
Project description:Long interspersed nucleotide element-1 (L1) is a retroelement comprising about 17% of the human genome, of which 80-100 copies are competent as mobile elements (retrotransposition: L1-RTP). Although the genetic structures modified during L1-RTP have been clarified, little is known about the cellular signaling cascades involved. Herein we found that 6-formylindolo[3,2-b]carbazole (FICZ), a tryptophan photoproduct postulated as a candidate physiological ligand of the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR), induces L1-RTP. Notably, RNA-interference experiments combined with back-transfection of siRNA-resistant cDNAs revealed that the induction of L1-RTP by FICZ is dependent on AhR nuclear translocator-1 (ARNT1), a binding partner of AhR, and the activation of cAMP-responsive element-binding protein. However, our extensive analyses suggested that AhR is not required for L1-RTP. FICZ stimulated the interaction of the L1-encoded open reading frame-1 (ORF1) and ARNT1, and recruited ORF1 to chromatin in a manner dependent on the activation of mitogen-activated protein kinase. Along with our additional observations that the cellular cascades for FICZ-induced L1-RTP were different from those of L1-RTP triggered by DNA damage, we propose that the presence of the cellular machinery of ARNT1 mediates L1-RTP. A possible role of ARNT1-mediated L1-RTP in the adaptation of living organisms to environmental changes is discussed.
Project description:Despite the large number of genomic and transcriptomic resources in maize, there is still much to learn about the function of genes in developmental and biochemical processes. Some maize mutants that were generated by gamma-irradiation showed clear segregation for the kernel phenotypes in B73?×?Mo17 F2 ears. To better understand the functional genomics of kernel development, we developed a mapping and gene identification pipeline, bulked segregant exome sequencing (BSEx-seq), to map mutants with kernel phenotypes including opaque endosperm and reduced kernel size. BSEx-seq generates and compares the sequence of the exon fraction from mutant and normal plant F2 DNA pools. The comparison can derive mapping peaks, identify deletions within the mapping peak, and suggest candidate genes within the deleted regions. We then used the public kernel-specific expression data to narrow down the list of candidate genes/mutations and identified deletions ranging from several kb to more than 1?Mb. A full deletion allele of the Opaque-2 gene was identified in mutant 531, which occurs within a ?200-kb deletion. Opaque mutant 1486 has a 6248-bp deletion in the mapping interval containing two candidate genes encoding RNA-directed DNA methylation 4 (RdDM4) and AMP-binding protein, respectively. This study demonstrates the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of BSEx-seq for causal mutation mapping and candidate gene selection, providing a new option in mapping-by-sequencing for maize functional genomics studies.
Project description:OBJECTIVES:To investigate the biologic relevance of cross-platform concordant changes in gene expression in intact human failing/hypertrophied ventricular myocardium undergoing reverse remodeling. BACKGROUND:Information is lacking on genes and networks involved in remodeled human LVs, and in the associated investigative best practices. METHODS:We measured mRNA expression in ventricular septal endomyocardial biopsies from 47 idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy patients, at baseline and after 3-12 months of ?-blocker treatment to effect left ventricular (LV) reverse remodeling as measured by ejection fraction (LVEF). Cross-platform gene expression change concordance was investigated in reverse remodeling Responders (R) and Nonresponders (NR) using 3 platforms (RT-qPCR, microarray, and RNA-Seq) and two cohorts (All 47 subjects (A-S) and a 12 patient "Super-Responder" (S-R) subset of A-S). RESULTS:For 50 prespecified candidate genes, in A-S mRNA expression 2 platform concordance (CcpT), but not single platform change, was directly related to reverse remodeling, indicating CcpT has biologic significance. Candidate genes yielded a CcpT (PCR/microarray) of 62% for Responder vs. Nonresponder (R/NR) change from baseline analysis in A-S, and ranged from 38% to 100% in S-R for PCR/microarray/RNA-Seq 2 platform comparisons. Global gene CcpT measured by microarray/RNA-Seq was less than for candidate genes, in S-R R/NR 17.5% vs. 38% (P = 0.036). For S-R global gene expression changes, both cross-cohort concordance (CccT) and CcpT yielded markedly greater values for an R/NR vs. an R-only analysis (by 22 fold for CccT and 7 fold for CcpT). Pathway analysis of concordant global changes for R/NR in S-R revealed signals for downregulation of multiple phosphoinositide canonical pathways, plus expected evidence of a ?1-adrenergic receptor gene network including enhanced Ca2+ signaling. CONCLUSIONS:Two-platform concordant change in candidate gene expression is associated with LV biologic effects, and global expression concordant changes are best identified in an R/NR design that can yield novel information.
Project description:Two pools of individual single gene deletion (SGD) mutants of S. Typhimurium 14028s encompassing deletions of 3,923 annotated non-essential ORFs and sRNAs were screened by intraperitoneal (IP) injection in BALB/c mice followed by recovery from spleen and liver 2 days post infection. The relative abundance of each mutant was measured by microarray hybridization. The two mutant libraries differed in the orientation of the antibiotic resistance cassettes (either sense-oriented Kan(R), SGD-K, or antisense-oriented Cam(R), SGD-C). Consistent systemic colonization defects were observed in both libraries and both organs for hundreds of mutants of genes previously reported to be important after IP injection in this animal model, and for about 100 new candidate genes required for systemic colonization. Four mutants with a range of apparent fitness defects were confirmed using competitive infections with the wild-type parental strain: ?STM0286, ?STM0551, ?STM2363, and ?STM3356. Two mutants, ?STM0286 and ?STM2363, were then complemented in trans with a plasmid encoding an intact copy of the corresponding wild-type gene, and regained the ability to fully colonize BALB/c mice systemically. These results suggest the presence of many more undiscovered Salmonella genes with phenotypes in IP infection of BALB/c mice, and validate the libraries for application to other systems.
Project description:Photoreceptor cells achieve high sensitivity, reliably detecting single photons, while limiting the spontaneous activation events responsible for dark noise. We used proteomic, genetic, and electrophysiological approaches to characterize Retinophilin (RTP) (CG10233) in Drosophila photoreceptors and establish its involvement in dark-noise suppression. RTP possesses membrane occupation and recognition nexus (MORN) motifs, a structure shared with mammalian junctophilins and other membrane-associated proteins found within excitable cells. We show the MORN repeats, and both the N- and C-terminal domains, are required for RTP localization in the microvillar light-gathering organelle, the rhabdomere. RTP exists in multiple phosphorylated isoforms under dark conditions and is dephosphorylated by light exposure. An RTP deletion mutant exhibits a high rate of spontaneous membrane depolarization events in dark conditions but retains the normal kinetics of the light response. Photoreceptors lacking neither inactivation nor afterpotential C (NINAC) myosin III, a motor protein/kinase, also display a similar dark-noise phenotype as the RTP deletion. We show that NINAC mutants are depleted for RTP. These results suggest the increase in dark noise in NINAC mutants is attributable to lack of RTP and, furthermore, defines a novel role for NINAC in the rhabdomere. We propose that RTP is a light-regulated phosphoprotein that organizes rhabdomeric components to suppress random activation of the phototransduction cascade and thus increases the signaling fidelity of dark-adapted photoreceptors.