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Yu J.,Washington University in St. Louis | Liberton M.,Washington University in St. Louis | Cliften P.F.,Genome Technology Access Center | Head R.D.,Genome Technology Access Center | And 5 more authors.
Scientific reports | Year: 2015

Photosynthetic microbes are of emerging interest as production organisms in biotechnology because they can grow autotrophically using sunlight, an abundant energy source, and CO₂, a greenhouse gas. Important traits for such microbes are fast growth and amenability to genetic manipulation. Here we describe Synechococcus elongatus UTEX 2973, a unicellular cyanobacterium capable of rapid autotrophic growth, comparable to heterotrophic industrial hosts such as yeast. Synechococcus UTEX 2973 can be readily transformed for facile generation of desired knockout and knock-in mutations. Genome sequencing coupled with global proteomics studies revealed that Synechococcus UTEX 2973 is a close relative of the widely studied cyanobacterium Synechococcus elongatus PCC 7942, an organism that grows more than two times slower. A small number of nucleotide changes are the only significant differences between the genomes of these two cyanobacterial strains. Thus, our study has unraveled genetic determinants necessary for rapid growth of cyanobacterial strains of significant industrial potential.


Poppler L.,Washington University | Cohen J.,Washington University | Dolen U.C.,Washington University | Schriefer A.E.,Genome Technology Access Center | And 4 more authors.
Aesthetic Surgery Journal | Year: 2015

Background Subclinical infections, manifest as biofilms, are considered an important cause of capsular contracture. Acellular dermal matrices (ADMs) are frequently used in revision surgery to prevent recurrent capsular contractures. Objective We sought to identify an association between capsular contracture and biofilm formation on breast prostheses, capsules, and ADMs in a tissue expander/implant (TE/I) exchange clinical paradigm. Methods Biopsies of the prosthesis, capsule, and ADM from patients (N = 26) undergoing TE/I exchange for permanent breast implant were evaluated for subclinical infection. Capsular contracture was quantified with Baker Grade and intramammary pressure. Biofilm formation was evaluated with specialized cultures, rtPCR, bacterial taxonomy, live:dead staining, and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Collagen distribution, capsular histology, and ADM remodeling were quantified following fluorescent and light microscopy. Results Prosthetic devices were implanted from 91 to 1115 days. Intramammary pressure increased with Baker Grade. Of 26 patients evaluated, one patient had a positive culture and one patient demonstrated convincing evidence of biofilm morphology on SEM. Following PCR amplification 5 samples randomly selected for 16S rRNA gene sequencing demonstrated an abundance of suborder Micrococcineae, consistent with contamination. Conclusions Our data suggest that bacterial biofilms likely contribute to a proportion, but not all diagnosed capsular contractures. Biofilm formation does not appear to differ significantly between ADMs or capsules. While capsular contracture remains an incompletely understood but common problem in breast implant surgery, advances in imaging, diagnostic, and molecular techniques can now provide more sophisticated insights into the pathophysiology of capsular contracture. Level of Evidence 4 Therapeutic. © 2015 The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, Inc.


Robbins P.F.,U.S. National Institutes of Health | Lu Y.-C.,U.S. National Institutes of Health | El-Gamil M.,U.S. National Institutes of Health | Li Y.F.,U.S. National Institutes of Health | And 10 more authors.
Nature Medicine | Year: 2013

Substantial regressions of metastatic lesions have been observed in up to 70% of patients with melanoma who received adoptively transferred autologous tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) in phase 2 clinical trials. In addition, 40% of patients treated in a recent trial experienced complete regressions of all measurable lesions for at least 5 years following TIL treatment. To evaluate the potential association between the ability of TILs to mediate durable regressions and their ability to recognize potent antigens that presumably include mutated gene products, we developed a new screening approach involving mining whole-exome sequence data to identify mutated proteins expressed in patient tumors. We then synthesized and evaluated candidate mutated T cell epitopes that were identified using a major histocompatibility complex-binding algorithm for recognition by TILs. Using this approach, we identified mutated antigens expressed on autologous tumor cells that were recognized by three bulk TIL lines from three individuals with melanoma that were associated with objective tumor regressions following adoptive transfer. This simplified approach for identifying mutated antigens recognized by T cells avoids the need to generate and laboriously screen cDNA libraries from tumors and may represent a generally applicable method for identifying mutated antigens expressed in a variety of tumor types. © 2013 Nature America, Inc. All rights reserved.


Cruz-Orengo L.,University of Washington | Daniels B.P.,University of Washington | Dorsey D.,University of Washington | Basak S.A.,University of Washington | And 7 more authors.
Journal of Clinical Investigation | Year: 2014

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an inflammatory disease of the CNS that is characterized by BBB dysfunction and has a much higher incidence in females. Compared with other strains of mice, EAE in the SJL mouse strain models multiple features of MS, including an enhanced sensitivity of female mice to disease; however, the molecular mechanisms that underlie the sex- and strain-dependent differences in disease susceptibility have not been described. We identified sphingosine-1-phosphate receptor 2 (S1PR2) as a sex- and strain-specific, disease-modifying molecule that regulates BBB permeability by destabilizing adherens junctions. S1PR2 expression was increased in disease-susceptible regions of the CNS of both female SJL EAE mice and female patients with MS compared with their male counterparts. Pharmacological blockade or lack of S1PR2 signaling decreased EAE disease severity as the result of enhanced endothelial barrier function. Enhanced S1PR2 signaling in an in vitro BBB model altered adherens junction formation via activation of Rho/ROCK, CDC42, and caveolin endocytosis-dependent pathways, resulting in loss of apicobasal polarity and relocation of abluminal CXCL12 to vessel lumina. Furthermore, S1PR2-dependent BBB disruption and CXCL12 relocation were observed in vivo. These results identify a link between S1PR2 signaling and BBB polarity and implicate S1PR2 in sex-specific patterns of disease during CNS autoimmunity.


Mesa R.,University of Washington | Tyagi M.,Genome Technology Access Center | Harocopos G.,University of Washington | Vollman D.,University of Washington | Bassnett S.,University of Washington
Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science | Year: 2016

PURPOSE. We hypothesize that somatic mutations accumulate in cells of the human lens and may contribute to the development of cortical or posterior sub-capsular cataracts. Here, we used a Next-generation sequencing (NGS) strategy to screen for low-allelic frequency variants in DNA extracted from human lens epithelial samples. METHODS. Next-Generation sequencing of 151 cancer-related genes (WUCaMP2 panel) was performed on DNA extracted from post-mortem or surgical specimens obtained from 24 individuals. Usually, pairwise comparisons were made between two or more ocular samples from the same individual, allowing putative somatic variants detected in lens samples to be differentiated from germline variants. RESULTS. Use of a targeted hybridization approach enabled high sequence coverage (>1000- fold) of the WUCaMP2 genes. In addition to high-frequency variants (corresponding to homozygous or heterozygous SNPs and Indels), somatic variants with allelic frequencies of 1- 4% were detected in the lens epithelial samples. The presence of one such variant, a T > C point substitution at position 32907082 in BRCA2, was verified subsequently using droplet digital PCR. CONCLUSIONS. Low-allelic fraction variants are present in the human lens epithelium, at frequencies consistent with the presence of millimeter-sized clones. © 2015, Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology Inc. All rights reserved.


van Meel E.,University of Washington | Wegner D.J.,University of Washington | Cliften P.,Genome Technology Access Center | Willing M.C.,University of Washington | And 3 more authors.
BMC Medical Genetics | Year: 2013

Background: Methionyl-tRNA synthetase (MARS) catalyzes the ligation of methionine to its cognate transfer RNA and therefore plays an essential role in protein biosynthesis.Methods: We used exome sequencing, aminoacylation assays, homology modeling, and immuno-isolation of transfected MARS to identify and characterize mutations in the methionyl-tRNA synthetase gene (MARS) in an infant with an unexplained multi-organ phenotype.Results: We identified compound heterozygous mutations (F370L and I523T) in highly conserved regions of MARS. The parents were each heterozygous for one of the mutations. Aminoacylation assays documented that the F370L and I523T MARS mutants had 18 ± 6% and 16 ± 6%, respectively, of wild-type activity. Homology modeling of the human MARS sequence with the structure of E. coli MARS showed that the F370L and I523T mutations are in close proximity to each other, with residue I523 located in the methionine binding pocket. We found that the F370L and I523T mutations did not affect the association of MARS with the multisynthetase complex.Conclusion: This infant expands the catalogue of inherited human diseases caused by mutations in aminoacyl-tRNA synthetase genes. © 2013 van Meel et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.


PubMed | Genome Technology Access Center
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Aesthetic surgery journal | Year: 2015

Subclinical infections, manifest as biofilms, are considered an important cause of capsular contracture. Acellular dermal matrices (ADMs) are frequently used in revision surgery to prevent recurrent capsular contractures.We sought to identify an association between capsular contracture and biofilm formation on breast prostheses, capsules, and ADMs in a tissue expander/implant (TE/I) exchange clinical paradigm.Biopsies of the prosthesis, capsule, and ADM from patients (N = 26) undergoing TE/I exchange for permanent breast implant were evaluated for subclinical infection. Capsular contracture was quantified with Baker Grade and intramammary pressure. Biofilm formation was evaluated with specialized cultures, rtPCR, bacterial taxonomy, live:dead staining, and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Collagen distribution, capsular histology, and ADM remodeling were quantified following fluorescent and light microscopy.Prosthetic devices were implanted from 91 to 1115 days. Intramammary pressure increased with Baker Grade. Of 26 patients evaluated, one patient had a positive culture and one patient demonstrated convincing evidence of biofilm morphology on SEM. Following PCR amplification 5 samples randomly selected for 16S rRNA gene sequencing demonstrated an abundance of suborder Micrococcineae, consistent with contamination.Our data suggest that bacterial biofilms likely contribute to a proportion, but not all diagnosed capsular contractures. Biofilm formation does not appear to differ significantly between ADMs or capsules. While capsular contracture remains an incompletely understood but common problem in breast implant surgery, advances in imaging, diagnostic, and molecular techniques can now provide more sophisticated insights into the pathophysiology of capsular contracture.4 Therapeutic.


PubMed | University of Lausanne, University of Washington and Genome Technology Access Center
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America | Year: 2016

Many Leishmania (Viannia) parasites harbor the double-stranded RNA virus Leishmania RNA virus 1 (LRV1), which has been associated with increased disease severity in animal models and humans and with drug treatment failures in humans. Remarkably, LRV1 survives in the presence of an active RNAi pathway, which in many organisms controls RNA viruses. We found significant levels (0.4 to 2.5%) of small RNAs derived from LRV1 in both Leishmania braziliensis and Leishmania guyanensis, mapping across both strands and with properties consistent with Dicer-mediated cleavage of the dsRNA genome. LRV1 lacks cis- or trans-acting RNAi inhibitory activities, suggesting that virus retention must be maintained by a balance between RNAi activity and LRV1 replication. To tilt this balance toward elimination, we targeted LRV1 using long-hairpin/stem-loop constructs similar to those effective against chromosomal genes. LRV1 was completely eliminated, at high efficiency, accompanied by a massive overproduction of LRV1-specific siRNAs, representing as much as 87% of the total. For both L. braziliensis and L. guyanensis, RNAi-derived LRV1-negative lines were no longer able to induce a Toll-like receptor 3-dependent hyperinflammatory cytokine response in infected macrophages. We demonstrate in vitro a role for LRV1 in virulence of L. braziliensis, the Leishmania species responsible for the vast majority of mucocutaneous leishmaniasis cases. These findings establish a targeted method for elimination of LRV1, and potentially of other Leishmania viruses, which will facilitate mechanistic dissection of the role of LRV1-mediated virulence. Moreover, our data establish a third paradigm for RNAi-viral relationships in evolution: one of balance rather than elimination.


PubMed | Genome Technology Access Center
Type: | Journal: BMC genomics | Year: 2015

The arrival of RNA-seq as a high-throughput method competitive to the established microarray technologies has necessarily driven a need for comparative evaluation. To date, cross-platform comparisons of these technologies have been relatively few in number of platforms analyzed and were typically gene name annotation oriented. Here, we present a more extensive and yet precise assessment to elucidate differences and similarities in performance of numerous aspects including dynamic range, fidelity of raw signal and fold-change with sample titration, and concordance with qRT-PCR (TaqMan). To ensure that these results were not confounded by incompatible comparisons, we introduce the concept of probe mapping directed transcript pattern. A transcript pattern identifies probe(set)s across platforms that target a common set of transcripts for a specific gene. Thus, three levels of data were examined: entire data sets, data derived from a subset of 15,442 RefSeq genes common across platforms, and data derived from the transcript pattern defined subset of 7,034 RefSeq genes.In general, there were substantial core similarities between all 6 platforms evaluated; but, to varying degrees, the two RNA-seq protocols outperformed three of the four microarray platforms in most categories. Notably, a fourth microarray platform, Agilent with a modified protocol, was comparable, or marginally superior, to the RNA-seq protocols within these same assessments, especially in regards to fold-change evaluation. Furthermore, these 3 platforms (Agilent and two RNA-seq methods) demonstrated over 80% fold-change concordance with the gold standard qRT-PCR (TaqMan).This study suggests that microarrays can perform on nearly equal footing with RNA-seq, in certain key features, specifically when the dynamic range is comparable. Furthermore, the concept of a transcript pattern has been introduced that may minimize potential confounding factors of multi-platform comparison and may be useful for similar evaluations.


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