Browsing by Subject "GENETIC-VARIATION"

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  • Särkinen, Tiina; Poczai, Péter; Barboza, Gloria; van der Weerden, Gerard M.; Baden, Maria; Knapp, Sandra (2018)
    The Morelloid Glade, also known as the black nightshades or "Maurella" (Morella), is one of the 10 major Glades within Solanum L. The pantropical Glade consists of 75 currently recognised non-spiny herbaceous and suffrutescent species with simple or branched hairs with or without glandular tips, with a centre of distribution in the tropical Andes. A secondary centre of diversity is found in Africa, where a set of mainly polyploid taxa occur. A yet smaller set of species is found in Australasia and Europe, including Solanum nigrum L., the type of the genus Solanum. Due to the large number of published synonyms, combined with complex morphological variation, our understanding of species limits and diversity in the Morelloid Glade has remained poor despite detailed morphological studies carried out in conjunction with breeding experiments. Here we provide the first taxonomic overview since the 19th century of the entire group in the Old World, including Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe and islands of the Pacific. Complete synonymy, morphological descriptions, distribution maps and common names and uses are provided for all 19 species occurring outside the Americas (i.e. Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe and islands of the Pacific). We treat 12 species native to the Old World, as well as 7 taxa that are putatively introduced and/or invasive in the region. The current knowledge of the origin of the polyploid species is summarised. A key to all of the species occurring in the Old World is provided, together with line drawings and colour figures to aid identification both in herbaria and in the field. Preliminary conservation assessments arc provided for all species.
  • Kerr, Shona M.; Klaric, Lucija; Halachev, Mihail; Hayward, Caroline; Boutin, Thibaud S.; Meynert, Alison M.; Semple, Colin A.; Tuiskula, Annukka M.; Swan, Heikki; Santoyo-Lopez, Javier; Vitart, Veronique; Haley, Chris; Dean, John; Miedzybrodzka, Zosia; Aitman, Timothy J.; Wilson, James F. (2019)
    The Viking Health Study Shetland is a population-based research cohort of 2,122 volunteer participants with ancestry from the Shetland Isles in northern Scotland. The high kinship and detailed phenotype data support a range of approaches for associating rare genetic variants, enriched in this isolate population, with quantitative traits and diseases. As an exemplar, the c.1750G > A; p.Gly584Ser variant within the coding sequence of the KCNH2 gene implicated in Long QT Syndrome (LQTS), which occurred once in 500 whole genome sequences from this population, was investigated. Targeted sequencing of the KCNH2 gene in family members of the initial participant confirmed the presence of the sequence variant and identified two further members of the same family pedigree who shared the variant. Investigation of these three related participants for whom single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) array genotypes were available allowed a unique shared haplotype of 1.22 Mb to be defined around this locus. Searching across the full cohort for this haplotype uncovered two additional apparently unrelated individuals with no known genealogical connection to the original kindred. All five participants with the defined haplotype were shown to share the rare variant by targeted Sanger sequencing. If this result were verified in a healthcare setting, it would be considered clinically actionable, and has been actioned in relatives ascertained independently through clinical presentation. The General Practitioners of four study participants with the rare variant were alerted to the research findings by letters outlining the phenotype (prolonged electrocardiographic QTc interval). A lack of detectable haplotype sharing between c.1750G > A; p.Gly584Ser chromosomes from previously reported individuals from Finland and those in this study from Shetland suggests that this mutation has arisen more than once in human history. This study showcases the potential value of isolate population-based research resources for genomic medicine. It also illustrates some challenges around communication of actionable findings in research participants in this context.
  • Nuotio, Marja-Liisa; Pervjakova, Natalia; Joensuu, Anni; Karhunen, Ville; Hiekkalinna, Tero; Milani, Lili; Kettunen, Johannes; Järvelin, Marjo-Riitta; Jousilahti, Pekka; Metspalu, Andres; Salomaa, Veikko; Kristiansson, Kati; Perola, Markus (2020)
    The role of metabolic syndrome (MetS) as a preceding metabolic state for type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease is widely recognised. To accumulate knowledge of the pathological mechanisms behind the condition at the methylation level, we conducted an epigenome-wide association study (EWAS) of MetS and its components, testing 1187 individuals of European ancestry for approximately 470 000 methylation sites throughout the genome. Methylation site cg19693031 in gene TXNIP -previously associated with type 2 diabetes, glucose and lipid metabolism, associated with fasting glucose level (P=1.80x10(-8)). Cg06500161 in gene ABCG1 associated both with serum triglycerides (P=5.36x10(-9)) and waist circumference (P=5.21x10(-9)). The previously identified type 2 diabetes-associated locus cg08309687 in chromosome 21 associated with waist circumference for the first time (P=2.24x10(-7)). Furthermore, a novel HDL association with cg17901584 in chromosome 1 was identified (P=7.81x10(-8)). Our study supports previous genetic studies of MetS, finding that lipid metabolism plays a key role in pathology of the syndrome. We provide evidence regarding a close interplay with glucose metabolism. Finally, we suggest that in attempts to identify methylation loci linking separate MetS components, cg19693031 appears to represent a strong candidate.
  • Tubic, Natasa Kocis; Stahls, Gunilla; Acanski, Jelena; Djan, Mihajla; Vidakovic, Dragana Obreht; Hayat, Rüstem; Khaghaninia, Samad; Vujic, Ante; Radenkovic, Snezana (2018)
    The Merodon nanus group (Diptera, Syrphidae) is a small group of closely related species with high morphological similarity. Until now, based on morphological characters, this group consisted of five species: M. nanus Sack, 1931; M. telmateia Hurkmans, 1987; M. kopensis Vuji et Hayat, 2015; M. neonanus Vuji et Taylor, 2015; and M. rasicus Vuji et Radenkovi, 2015. Here, using an integrative approach based on molecular characters (sequences of the D2-3 region of the nuclear 28S rRNA gene and the mitochondrial COI gene) and data obtained from geometric morphometry of wing shape, we distinguish all five previously morphologically defined species of the group. Additionally, we identify one species as being new to science, M. vladimiri Vuji et Koi Tubi sp. n. We emphasize the separation of this newly described species according to the sequences obtained from the slowly evolving 28S rRNA gene, which demonstrated four to five mutation positions between this species and morphologically the most similar M. neonanus species. Also, our results show a clear division of M. telmateia into at least three population groups that we designate as the subspecies: M. telmateia mediterraneus Aanski et Koi Tubi subsp. n. and M. telmateia samosensis Aanski et Koi Tubi subsp. n. exhibiting western distributions (western Anatolia and the Greek island of Samos, respectively) and the nominative subspecies M. telmateia telmateia with an eastern Anatolian distribution.
  • Int Genetics Consortium; Marini, Sandro; Crawford, Katherine; Tatlisumak, Turgut; Happola, Olli; Sheth, Kevin N. (2019)
    IMPORTANCE Genetic studies of intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) have focused mainly on white participants, but genetic risk may vary or could be concealed by differing nongenetic coexposures in nonwhite populations. Transethnic analysis of risk may clarify the role of genetics in ICH risk across populations. OBJECTIVE To evaluate associations between established differences in ICH risk by race/ethnicity and the variability in the risks of apolipoprotein E (APOE) epsilon 4 alleles, the most potent genetic risk factor for ICH. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS This case-control study of primary ICH meta-analyzed the association of APOE allele status on ICH risk, applying a 2-stage clustering approach based on race/ethnicity and stratified by a contributing study. A propensity score analysis was used to model the association of APOE with the burden of hypertension across race/ethnic groups. Primary ICH cases and controls were collected from 3 hospital- and population-based studies in the United States and 8 in European sites in the International Stroke Genetic Consortium. Participants were enrolled from January 1, 1999, to December 31, 2017. Participants with secondary causes of ICH were excluded from enrollment. Controls were regionally matched within each participating study. MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES Clinical variables were systematically obtained from structured interviews within each site. APOE genotype was centrally determined for all studies. RESULTS In total, 13 124 participants (7153 [54.5%] male with a median [interquartile range] age of 66 [56-76] years) were included. In white participants, APOE epsilon 2 (odds ratio [OR], 1.49; 95% CI, 1.24-1.80; P <.001) and APOE epsilon 4 (OR, 1.51; 95% CI, 1.23-1.85; P <.001) were associated with lobar ICH risk; however, within self-identified Hispanic and black participants, no associations were found. After propensity score matching for hypertension burden, APOE epsilon 4 was associated with lobar ICH risk among Hispanic (OR, 1.14; 95% CI, 1.03-1.28; P = .01) but not in black (OR, 1.02; 95% CI, 0.98-1.07; P = .25) participants. APOE epsilon 2 and epsilon 4 did not show an association with nonlobar ICH risk in any race/ethnicity. CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE APOE epsilon 4 and epsilon 2 alleles appear to affect lobar ICH risk variably by race/ethnicity, associations that are confirmed in white individuals but can be shown in Hispanic individuals only when the excess burden of hypertension is propensity score-matched; further studies are needed to explore the interactions between APOE alleles and environmental exposures that vary by race/ethnicity in representative populations at risk for ICH.
  • Hirvonen, Katariina; Korhonen, Tellervo; Salomaa, Veikko; Mannisto, Satu; Kaprio, Jaakko (2017)
    Introduction: Genetic variations in DBH-gene and its surroundings have been shown to associate with smoking behavior including smoking cessation in several studies. In this study we replicate and measure the effect size for association between DBH polymorphism rs3025343 and smoking cessation in a large population-based sample while examining environmental factors that could relate to the association. Methods: We studied 11 926 adult subjects from four surveys of the National FINRISK Study. The analysis was restricted to either current or former smokers. Logistic and linear regression analyses were conducted to investigate the relationships of the single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP), covariates, smoking cessation, and smoking severity (cotinine, CPD). Gene-environment interactions were tested by likelihood-ratio test. Results: The association between rs3025343 and smoking cessation (prevalence odds ratio, OR = 1.12, p = .094, 95% CI = 0.98-1.30) was replicated identically with the GWAS study of The Tobacco and Genetics Consortium (OR = 1.12, 95% CI = 1.08-1.18). None of our tested phenotypes significantly influenced the association between rs3025343 and smoking cessation. Overall, marital status, education, depression, alcohol use, self-rated health, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) showed phenotypic associations with smoking cessation, but the association of various phenotypes with smoking cessation did not vary by genotype. Conclusions: The current study replicates the effect size for the association between rs3025343 and smoking cessation despite lack of overall significance due to smaller sample size. We could not show environmental influences on the association of rs3025343 with smoking cessation. Implications: Our study replicates the direction and strength of the association of DBH polymorphism rs3025343 with smoking cessation. We could not detect environmental influences on the strength of the association of rs3025343 with smoking cessation, but the limited power of our analysis needs to be taken into account.
  • Zhang, Sidi; Samocha, Kaitlin E.; Rivas, Manuel A.; Karczewski, Konrad J.; Daly, Emma; Schmandt, Ben; Neale, Benjamin M.; MacArthur, Daniel G.; Daly, Mark J. (2018)
    Variation in RNA splicing (i.e., alternative splicing) plays an important role in many diseases. Variants near 5' and 3' splice sites often affect splicing, but the effects of these variants on splicing and disease have not been fully characterized beyond the two "essential" splice nucleotides flanking each exon. Here we provide quantitative measurements of tolerance to mutational disruptions by position and reference allele-alternative allele combinations. We show that certain reference alleles are particularly sensitive to mutations, regardless of the alternative alleles into which they are mutated. Using public RNA-seq data, we demonstrate that individuals carrying such variants have significantly lower levels of the correctly spliced transcript, compared to individuals without them, and confirm that these specific substitutions are highly enriched for known Mendelian mutations. Our results propose a more refined definition of the "splice region" and offer a new way to prioritize and provide functional interpretation of variants identified in diagnostic sequencing and association studies.
  • Zhang, Kaiyi; Tao, Cong; Xu, Jianping; Ruan, Jinxue; Xia, Jihan; Zhu, Wenjuan; Xin, Leilei; Ye, Huaqiong; Xie, Ning; Xia, Boce; Li, Chenxiao; Wu, Tianwen; Wang, Yanfang; Schroyen, Martine; Xiao, Xinhua; Fan, Jiangao; Yang, Shulin (2021)
    Anti-inflammatory therapies have the potential to become an effective treatment for obesity-related diseases. However, the huge gap of immune system between human and rodent leads to limitations of drug discovery. This work aims at constructing a transgenic pig model with higher risk of metabolic diseases and outlining the immune responses at the early stage of metaflammation by transcriptomic strategy. We used CRISPR/Cas9 techniques to targeted knock-in three humanized disease risk genes, GIPR(dn) , hIAPP and PNPLA3(I148M) . Transgenic effect increased the risk of metabolic disorders. Triple-transgenic pigs with short-term diet intervention showed early symptoms of type 2 diabetes, including glucose intolerance, pancreatic lipid infiltration, islet hypertrophy, hepatic lobular inflammation and adipose tissue inflammation. Molecular pathways related to CD8(+) T cell function were significantly activated in the liver and visceral adipose samples from triple-transgenic pigs, including antigen processing and presentation, T-cell receptor signaling, co-stimulation, cytotoxicity, and cytokine and chemokine secretion. The similar pro-inflammatory signaling in liver and visceral adipose tissue indicated that there might be a potential immune crosstalk between the two tissues. Moreover, genes that functionally related to liver antioxidant activity, mitochondrial function and extracellular matrix showed distinct expression between the two groups, indicating metabolic stress in transgenic pigs' liver samples. We confirmed that triple-transgenic pigs had high coincidence with human metabolic diseases, especially in the scope of inflammatory signaling at early stage metaflammation. Taken together, this study provides a valuable large animal model for the clinical study of metaflammation and metabolic diseases.
  • Suomela, Emmi; Oikonen, Mervi; Pitkanen, Niina; Ahola-Olli, Ari; Virtanen, Johanna; Parkkola, Riitta; Jokinen, Eero; Laitinen, Tomi; Hutri-Kahonen, Nina; Kahonen, Mika; Lehtimaki, Terho; Taittonen, Leena; Tossavainen, Paivi; Jula, Antti; Loom, Britt-Marie; Mikkila, Vera; Telama, Risto; Viikari, Jorma S. A.; Juonala, Markus; Raitakari, Olli T. (2016)
    Background & Aims: Fatty liver is a potentially preventable cause of serious liver diseases. This longitudinal study aimed to identify childhood risk factors of fatty liver in adulthood in a population-based group of Finnish adults. Methods: Study cohort included 2,042 individuals from the Cardiovascular Risk in Young Finns Study aged 3-18 years at baseline in 1980. During the latest follow-up in 2011, the liver was scanned by ultrasound. In addition to physical and environmental factors related to fatty liver, we examined whether the genetic risk posed by a single nucleotide polymorphism in the patatin-like phospholipase domain-containing protein 3 gene (PNPLA3) (rs738409) strengthens prediction of adult fatty liver. Results: Independent childhood predictors of adult fatty liver were small for gestational age, (odds ratio = 1.71, 95% confidence interval = 1.07-2.72), variant in PNPLA3 (1.63, 1.29-2.07 per one risk allele), variant in the transmembrane 6 superfamily 2 gene (TM6SF2) (1.57, 1.08-2.30), BMI (1.30, 1.07-1.59 per standard deviation) and insulin (1.25, 1.05-1.49 per standard deviation). Childhood blood pressure, physical activity, C-reactive protein, smoking, serum lipid levels or parental lifestyle factors did not predict fatty liver. Risk assessment based on childhood age, sex, BMI, insulin levels, birth weight, TM6SF2 and PNPLA3 was superior in predicting fatty liver compared with the approach using only age, sex, BMI and insulin levels (C statistics, 0.725 vs. 0.749; p = 0.002). Conclusions: Childhood risk factors on the development of fatty liver were small for gestational age, high insulin and high BMI. Prediction of adult fatty liver was enhanced by taking into account genetic variants in PNPLA3 and TM6SF2 genes. Lay summary: The increase in pediatric obesity emphasizes the importance of identification of children and adolescents at high risk of fatty liver in adulthood. We used data from the longitudinal Cardiovascular Risk in Young Finns Study to examine the associations of childhood (3-18 years) risk variables with fatty liver assessed in adulthood at the age of 34-49 years. The findings suggest that a multifactorial approach with both lifestyle and genetic factors included would improve early identification of children with a high risk of adult fatty liver. (C) 2016 European Association for the Study of the Liver. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
  • Qvarnstrom, Anna; Alund, Murielle; McFarlane, S. Eryn; Sirkiä, Päivi (2016)
    Climate adaptation is surprisingly rarely reported as a cause for the build-up of reproductive isolation between diverging populations. In this review, we summarize evidence for effects of climate adaptation on pre- and postzygotic isolation between emerging species with a particular focus on pied (Ficedula hypoleuca) and collared (Ficedula albicollis) flycatchers as a model for research on speciation. Effects of climate adaptation on prezygotic isolation or extrinsic selection against hybrids have been documented in several taxa, but the combined action of climate adaptation and sexual selection is particularly well explored in Ficedula flycatchers. There is a general lack of evidence for divergent climate adaptation causing intrinsic postzygotic isolation. However, we argue that the profound effects of divergence in climate adaptation on the whole biochemical machinery of organisms and hence many underlying genes should increase the likelihood of genetic incompatibilities arising as side effects. Fast temperature-dependent co-evolution between mitochondrial and nuclear genomes may be particularly likely to lead to hybrid sterility. Thus, how climate adaptation relates to reproductive isolation is best explored in relation to fast-evolving barriers to gene flow, while more research on later stages of divergence is needed to achieve a complete understanding of climate-driven speciation.
  • Guo, Michael H.; Nandakumar, Satish K.; Ulirsch, Jacob C.; Zekavat, Seyedeh M.; Buenrostro, Jason D.; Natarajan, Pradeep; Salem, Rany M.; Chiarle, Roberto; Mitt, Mario; Kals, Mart; Pärn, Kalle; Fischer, Krista; Milani, Lili; Magi, Reedik; Palta, Priit; Gabriel, Stacey B.; Metspalu, Andres; Lander, Eric S.; Kathiresan, Sekar; Hirschhorn, Joel N.; Esko, Tonu; Sankaran, Vijay G. (2017)
    Genetic variants affecting hematopoiesis can influence commonly measured blood cell traits. To identify factors that affect hematopoiesis, we performed association studies for blood cell traits in the population-based Estonian Biobank using high-coverage whole-genome sequencing (WGS) in 2,284 samples and SNP genotyping in an additional 14,904 samples. Using up to 7,134 samples with available phenotype data, our analyses identified 17 associations across 14 blood cell traits. Integration of WGS-based fine-mapping and complementary epigenomic datasets provided evidence for causal mechanisms at several loci, including at a previously undiscovered basophil count-associated locus near the master hematopoietic transcription factor CEBPA. The fine-mapped variant at this basophil count association near CEBPA overlapped an enhancer active in common myeloid progenitors and influenced its activity. In situ perturbation of this enhancer by CRISPR/Cas9 mutagenesis in hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells demonstrated that it is necessary for and specifically regulates CEBPA expression during basophil differentiation. We additionally identified basophil count-associated variation at another more pleiotropic myeloid enhancer near GATA2, highlighting regulatory mechanisms for ordered expression of master hematopoietic regulators during lineage specification. Our study illustrates how population-based genetic studies can provide key insights into poorly understood cell differentiation processes of considerable physiologic relevance.
  • Sandholm, Niina; Haukka, Jani K.; Toppila, Iiro; Valo, Erkka; Harjutsalo, Valma; Forsblom, Carol; Groop, Per-Henrik (2018)
    Urinary albumin excretion is an early sign of diabetic kidney disease, affecting every third individual with diabetes. Despite substantial estimated heritability, only variants in the GLRA3 gene have been genome-wide significantly associated (p-value <5 x 10(-8)) with diabetic albuminuria, in Finnish individuals with type 1 diabetes; However, replication attempt in non-Finnish Europeans with type 1 diabetes showed nominally significant association in the opposite direction, suggesting a population-specific effect, but simultaneously leaving the finding controversial. In this study, the association between the common rs10011025 variant in the GLRA3 locus, and albuminuria, was confirmed in 1259 independent Finnish individuals with type 1 diabetes (p = 0.0013), and meta-analysis of all Finnish individuals yielded a genome-wide significant association. The association was particularly pronounced in subjects not reaching the treatment target for blood glucose levels (HbA(1c) > 7%; N = 2560, p = 1.7 x 10(-9)). Even though further studies are needed to pinpoint the causal variants, dissecting the association at the GLRA3 locus may uncover novel molecular mechanisms for diabetic albuminuria irrespective of population background.
  • Radenkovic, Snezana; Zoric, Ljiljana Sasic; Djan, Mihajla; Vidakovic, Dragana Obreht; Acanski, Jelena; Ståhls, Gunilla; Velickovic, Nevena; Markov, Zlata; Petanidou, Theodora; Tubic, Natasa Kocis; Vujic, Ante (2018)
    The Merodon aureus group is characterized by high endemism and the presence of morphologically cryptic species. Within one of its subgroups, M.bessarabicus, seven species and four more species complexes have been described to date. One of these complexes, the M.luteomaculatus, comprises new taxa that are the subject of the present study. Its members have allopatric ranges restricted to the Balkan Peninsula and Aegean islands. This complex exhibits morphological variability that could not be characterized using a traditional morphological approach. Thus, we used integrative taxonomy with independent character sets (molecular, geometric morphometric, distributional) to delimit species boundaries. Data on three molecular markers (COI, 28S rRNA, and ISSR) and geometric morphometry of the wing and male genitalia, together with distributional data, enabled recognition of six cryptic species within the complex: M.andriotes sp. n., M.euri sp. n., M.erymanthius sp. n., M.luteomaculatus sp. n., M.naxius sp. n., and M.peloponnesius sp. n. We discuss the possible influence of Aegean paleogeographical history on the speciation of this complex.
  • Rauhamäki, Virve; Wolfram, Joy; Jokitalo, Eija; Hanski, Ilkka; Dahlhoff, Elizabeth P. (2014)
    Habitat loss and climate change are rapidly converting natural habitats and thereby increasing the significance of dispersal capacity for vulnerable species. Flight is necessary for dispersal in many insects, and differences in dispersal capacity may reflect dissimilarities in flight muscle aerobic capacity. In a large metapopulation of the Glanville fritillary butterfly in the Åland Islands in Finland, adults disperse frequently between small local populations. Individuals found in newly established populations have higher flight metabolic rates and field-measured dispersal distances than butterflies in old populations. To assess possible differences in flight muscle aerobic capacity among Glanville fritillary populations, enzyme activities and tissue concentrations of the mitochondrial protein Cytochrome-c Oxidase (CytOx) were measured and compared with four other species of Nymphalid butterflies. Flight muscle structure and mitochondrial density were also examined in the Glanville fritillary and a long-distance migrant, the red admiral. Glanville fritillaries from new populations had significantly higher aerobic capacities than individuals from old populations. Comparing the different species, strong-flying butterfly species had higher flight muscle CytOx content and enzymatic activity than short-distance fliers, and mitochondria were larger and more numerous in the flight muscle of the red admiral than the Glanville fritillary. These results suggest that superior dispersal capacity of butterflies in new populations of the Glanville fritillary is due in part to greater aerobic capacity, though this species has a low aerobic capacity in general when compared with known strong fliers. Low aerobic capacity may limit dispersal ability of the Glanville fritillary.
  • Sundar, Isaac K.; Yin, Qiangzong; Baier, Brian S.; Yan, Li; Mazur, Witold; Li, Dongmei; Susiarjo, Martha; Rahman, Irfan (2017)
    Background: Epigenetics changes have been shown to be affected by cigarette smoking. Cigarette smoke (CS)-mediated DNA methylation can potentially affect several cellular and pathophysiological processes, acute exacerbations, and comorbidity in the lungs of patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). We sought to determine whether genome-wide lung DNA methylation profiles of smokers and patients with COPD were significantly different from non-smokers. We isolated DNA from parenchymal lung tissues of patients including eight lifelong non-smokers, eight current smokers, and eight patients with COPD and analyzed the samples using Illumina's Infinium HumanMethylation450 BeadChip. Results: Our data revealed that the differentially methylated genes were related to top canonical pathways (e.g., G beta gamma signaling, mechanisms of cancer, and nNOS signaling in neurons), disease and disorders (organismal injury and abnormalities, cancer, and respiratory disease), and molecular and cellular functions (cell death and survival, cellular assembly and organization, cellular function and maintenance) in patients with COPD. The genome-wide DNA methylation analysis identified suggestive genes, such as NOS1AP, TNFAIP2, BID, GABRB1, ATXN7, and THOC7 with DNA methylation changes in COPD lung tissues that were further validated by pyrosequencing. Pyrosequencing validation confirmed hyper-methylation in smokers and patients with COPD as compared to non-smokers. However, we did not detect significant differences in DNA methylation for TNFAIP2, ATXN7, and THOC7 genes in smokers and COPD groups despite the changes observed in the genome-wide analysis. Conclusions: Our study suggests that DNA methylation in suggestive genes, such as NOS1AP, BID, and GABRB1 may be used as epigenetic signatures in smokers and patients with COPD if the same is validated in a larger cohort. Future studies are required to correlate DNA methylation status with transcriptomics of selective genes identified in this study and elucidate their role and involvement in the progression of COPD and its exacerbations.
  • Horne, Hisani N.; Chung, Charles C.; Zhang, Han; Yu, Kai; Prokunina-Olsson, Ludmila; Michailidou, Kyriaki; Bolla, Manjeet K.; Wang, Qin; Dennis, Joe; Hopper, John L.; Southey, Melissa C.; Schmidt, Marjanka K.; Broeks, Annegien; Muir, Kenneth; Lophatananon, Artitaya; Fasching, Peter A.; Beckmann, Matthias W.; Fletcher, Olivia; Johnson, Nichola; Sawyer, Elinor J.; Tomlinson, Ian; Burwinkel, Barbara; Marme, Frederik; Guenel, Pascal; Truong, Therese; Bojesen, Stig E.; Flyger, Henrik; Benitez, Javier; Gonzalez-Neira, Anna; Anton-Culver, Hoda; Neuhausen, Susan L.; Brenner, Hermann; Arndt, Volker; Meindl, Alfons; Schmutzler, Rita K.; Brauch, Hiltrud; Hamann, Ute; Nevanlinna, Heli; Khan, Sofia; Matsuo, Keitaro; Iwata, Hiroji; Dork, Thilo; Bogdanova, Natalia V.; Lindblom, Annika; Margolin, Sara; Mannermaa, Arto; Kosma, Veli-Matti; Chenevix-Trench, Georgia; Wu, Anna H.; den Berg, David Ven; kConFab AOCS Investigators (2016)
    The Cancer Genetic Markers of Susceptibility genome-wide association study (GWAS) originally identified a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) rs11249433 at 1p11.2 associated with breast cancer risk. To fine-map this locus, we genotyped 92 SNPs in a 900kb region (120,505,799-121,481,132) flanking rs11249433 in 45,276 breast cancer cases and 48,998 controls of European, Asian and African ancestry from 50 studies in the Breast Cancer Association Consortium. Genotyping was done using iCOGS, a custom-built array. Due to the complicated nature of the region on chr1p11.2: 120,300,000-120,505,798, that lies near the centromere and contains seven duplicated genomic segments, we restricted analyses to 429 SNPs excluding the duplicated regions (42 genotyped and 387 imputed). Perallelic associations with breast cancer risk were estimated using logistic regression models adjusting for study and ancestry-specific principal components. The strongest association observed was with the original identified index SNP rs11249433 (minor allele frequency (MAF) 0.402; per-allele odds ratio (OR) = 1.10, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.08-1.13, P = 1.49 x 10(-21)). The association for rs11249433 was limited to ER-positive breast cancers (test for heterogeneity P
  • NBCS Collaborators; Escala-Garcia, Maria; Guo, Qi; Doerk, Thilo; Blomqvist, Carl; Khan, Sofia; Kiiski, Johanna I.; Nevanlinna, Heli (2019)
    BACKGROUND: We examined the associations between germline variants and breast cancer mortality using a large meta-analysis of women of European ancestry. METHODS: Meta-analyses included summary estimates based on Cox models of twelve datasets using similar to 10.4 million variants for 96,661 women with breast cancer and 7697 events (breast cancer-specific deaths). Oestrogen receptor (ER)-specific analyses were based on 64,171 ER-positive (4116) and 16,172 ER-negative (2125) patients. We evaluated the probability of a signal to be a true positive using the Bayesian false discovery probability (BFDP). RESULTS: We did not find any variant associated with breast cancer-specific mortality at P CONCLUSIONS: We uncovered germline variants on chromosome 7 at BFDP
  • Mikola, Juha; Koikkalainen, Katariina; Rasehorn, Mira; Silfver, Tarja; Paaso, Ulla; Rousi, Matti (2021)
    Fast-growing and slow-growing plant species are suggested to show integrated economics spectrums and the tradeoffs of fast growth are predicted to emerge as susceptibility to herbivory and resource competition. We tested if these predictions also hold for fast-growing and slow-growing genotypes within a silver birch, Betula pendula population. We exposed cloned saplings of 17 genotypes with slow, medium or fast height growth to reduced insect herbivory, using an insecticide, and to increasing resource competition, using naturally varying field plot grass cover. We measured shoot and root growth, ectomycorrhizal (EM) fungal production using ergosterol analysis and soil N transfer to leaves using N-15-labelled pulse of NH4+. We found that fast-growing genotypes grew on average 78% faster, produced 56% and 16% more leaf mass and ergosterol, and showed 78% higher leaf N uptake than slow-growing genotypes. The insecticide decreased leaf damage by 83% and increased shoot growth, leaf growth and leaf N uptake by 38%, 52% and 76%, without differences between the responses of fast-growing and slow-growing genotypes, whereas root mass decreased with increasing grass cover. Shoot and leaf growth of fast-growing genotypes decreased and EM fungal production of slow-growing genotypes increased with increasing grass cover. Our results suggest that fast growth is genotypically associated with higher allocation to EM fungi, better soil N capture and greater leaf production, and that the tradeoff of fast growth is sensitivity to competition, but not to insect herbivory. EM fungi may have a dual role: to support growth of fast-growing genotypes under low grass competition and to maintain growth of slow-growing genotypes under intensifying competition.
  • Luukkonen, Panu K.; Zhou, You; Sädevirta, Sanja; Leivonen, Marja; Arola, Johanna; Oresic, Matej; Hyotylainen, Tuulia; Yki-Jarvinen, Hannele (2016)
    Background & Aims: Recent data in mice have identified de novo ceramide synthesis as the key mediator of hepatic insulin resistance (IR) that in humans characterizes increases in liver fat due to IR ('Metabolic NAFLD' but not that due to the I148M gene variant in PNPLA3 ('PNPLA3 NAFLD'). We determined which bioactive lipids co-segregate with IR in the human liver. Methods: Liver lipidome was profiled in liver biopsies from 125 subjects that were divided into equally sized groups based on median HOMA-IR ('High and Low HOMA-IR', n = 62 and n = 63) or PNPLA3 genotype (PNPIA3(148MM/MI), n = 61 vs. PNPLA3(148II), n = 64). The subjects were also divided into 4 groups who had either IR, the I148M gene variant, both of the risk factors or neither. Results: Steatosis and NASH prevalence were similarly increased in 'High HOMA-IR' and PNPLA3(148MM/MI) groups compared to their respective control groups. The 'High HOMA-IR' but not the PNPLA3(148MM/MI) group had features of IR. The liver in 'High HOMA-IR' vs. low HOMA-IR' was markedly enriched in saturated and monounsaturated triacylglycerols and free fatty acids, dihydroceramides (markers of de novo ceramide synthesis) and ceramides. Markers of other ceramide synthetic pathways were unchanged. In PNPLA3(148MM/MI) vs. PNPLA3(148II), the increase in liver fat was due to polyunsaturated triacylglycerols while other lipids were unchanged. Similar changes were observed when data were analyzed using the 4 subgroups. Conclusions: Similar increases in liver fat and NASH are associated with a metabolically harmful saturated, ceramide-enriched liver lipidome in 'Metabolic NAFLD' but not in 'PNPLA3 NAFLD'. This difference may explain why metabolic but not PNPLA3 NAFLD increases the risk of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. (C) 2016 European Association for the Study of the Liver. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
  • Opedal, Oystein H. (2018)
    Premise of research. Phenotypic traits that consistently mediate species' responses to environmental variation (functional traits) provide a promising approach toward generalizing ecological and evolutionary patterns and thereby gaining insights into the processes generating them. In the plant functional ecology literature, most trait-based studies have focused on traits mediating either resource competition or responses to variation in the abiotic environment, while traits mediating reproductive interactions have often been neglected. Methodology. Here, I discuss the value of herkogamy, the spatial separation of male and female functions in flowers, as a functional trait in plant reproductive biology and review the evidence relevant to the hypothesis that taxa exhibiting greater herkogamy have historically experienced more reliable pollination and more outcrossed mating systems. Pivotal results. A large body of work in the field of plant reproductive biology has identified a set of nearly ubiquitous correlations between average herkogamy and features of plant mating systems, notably, autofertility (seed set in the absence of pollinators) and outcrossing rate. Herkogamy often varies extensively among populations and species, and the adaptive interpretation is that herkogamy exhibits local adaptation to the reliability of the pollination environment. Conclusions. These results underline the value of herkogamy as a functional trait representing variation in mating histories. Many important insights are likely to emerge from studies leveraging herkogamy as an easily measured proxy of plant mating systems, as already demonstrated in comparative studies and studies of reproductive interactions. Greater consideration of herkogamy and other reproductive-function traits in studies of species coexistence may provide a more complete understanding of community assembly processes.