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Gao D.,University of Georgia | Jimenez-Lopez J.C.,High Council for Scientific Research | Iwata A.,University of Georgia | Gill N.,University of Georgia | And 2 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2012

Retrotransposons with long terminal repeats (LTRs) more than 3 kb are not frequent in most eukaryotic genomes. Rice LTR retrotransposon, Retrosat2, has LTRs greater than 3.2 kb and two open reading frames (ORF): ORF1 encodes enzymes for retrotransposition whereas no function can be assigned to ORF0 as it is not found in any other organism. A variety of experimental and in silico approaches were used to determine the origin of Retrosat2 and putative function of ORF0. Our data show that not only is Retrosat2 highly abundant in the Oryza genus, it may yet be active in rice. Homologs of Retrosat2 were identified in maize, sorghum, Arabidopsis and other plant genomes suggesting that the Retrosat2 family is of ancient origin. Several putatively cis-acting elements, some multicopy, that regulate retrotransposon replication or responsiveness to environmental factors were found in the LTRs of Retrosat2. Unlike the ORF1, the ORF0 sequences from Retrosat2 and homologs are divergent at the sequence level, 3D-structures and predicted biological functions. In contrast to other retrotransposon families, Retrosat2 and its homologs are dispersed throughout genomes and not concentrated in the specific chromosomal regions, such as centromeres. The genomic distribution of Retrosat2 homologs varies across species which likely reflects the differing evolutionary trajectories of this retrotransposon family across diverse species. © 2012 Gao et al. Source

Jimenez-Lopez J.C.,High Council for Scientific Research | Morales S.,High Council for Scientific Research | Castro A.J.,High Council for Scientific Research | Volkmann D.,University of Bonn | And 2 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2012

Profilin, a multigene family involved in actin dynamics, is a multiple partners-interacting protein, as regard of the presence of at least of three binding domains encompassing actin, phosphoinositide lipids, and poly-L-proline interacting patches. In addition, pollen profilins are important allergens in several species like Olea europaea L. (Ole e 2), Betula pendula (Bet v 2), Phleum pratense (Phl p 12), Zea mays (Zea m 12) and Corylus avellana (Cor a 2). In spite of the biological and clinical importance of these molecules, variability in pollen profilin sequences has been poorly pointed out up until now. In this work, a relatively high number of pollen profilin sequences have been cloned, with the aim of carrying out an extensive characterization of their polymorphism among 24 olive cultivars and the above mentioned plant species. Our results indicate a high level of variability in the sequences analyzed. Quantitative intra-specific/varietal polymorphism was higher in comparison to inter-specific/cultivars comparisons. Multi-optional posttranslational modifications, e.g. phosphorylation sites, physicochemical properties, and partners-interacting functional residues have been shown to be affected by profilin polymorphism. As a result of this variability, profilins yielded a clear taxonomic separation between the five plant species. Profilin family multifunctionality might be inferred by natural variation through profilin isovariants generated among olive germplasm, as a result of polymorphism. The high variability might result in both differential profilin properties and differences in the regulation of the interaction with natural partners, affecting the mechanisms underlying the transmission of signals throughout signaling pathways in response to different stress environments. Moreover, elucidating the effect of profilin polymorphism in adaptive responses like actin dynamics, and cellular behavior, represents an exciting research goal for the future. © 2012 Jimenez-Lopez et al. Source

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