Biology

A systems genetics resource and analysis of sleep regulation in the mouse

PLOS Biology (new articles) - чт, 2018-08-09 23:00

by Shanaz Diessler, Maxime Jan, Yann Emmenegger, Nicolas Guex, Benita Middleton, Debra J. Skene, Mark Ibberson, Frederic Burdet, Lou Götz, Marco Pagni, Martial Sankar, Robin Liechti, Charlotte N. Hor, Ioannis Xenarios, Paul Franken

Sleep is essential for optimal brain functioning and health, but the biological substrates through which sleep delivers these beneficial effects remain largely unknown. We used a systems genetics approach in the BXD genetic reference population (GRP) of mice and assembled a comprehensive experimental knowledge base comprising a deep “sleep-wake” phenome, central and peripheral transcriptomes, and plasma metabolome data, collected under undisturbed baseline conditions and after sleep deprivation (SD). We present analytical tools to interactively interrogate the database, visualize the molecular networks altered by sleep loss, and prioritize candidate genes. We found that a one-time, short disruption of sleep already extensively reshaped the systems genetics landscape by altering 60%–78% of the transcriptomes and the metabolome, with numerous genetic loci affecting the magnitude and direction of change. Systems genetics integrative analyses drawing on all levels of organization imply α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) receptor trafficking and fatty acid turnover as substrates of the negative effects of insufficient sleep. Our analyses demonstrate that genetic heterogeneity and the effects of insufficient sleep itself on the transcriptome and metabolome are far more widespread than previously reported.
Категории: Biology, Journals

We have measured the speed of death and it’s 2 millimetres an hour

Genetics - чт, 2018-08-09 21:00
Biologists have watched death spread across a living cell for the first time, and discovered that it travels in a steady wave in the same way that wildfires do
Категории: Biology

High-speed electrons prove Einstein was right about the speed of light

Genetics - чт, 2018-08-09 17:43
Albert Einstein predicted that the speed of light does not change just because you are moving – and now two experiments have shown just how right he was
Категории: Biology

Allergy explosion: The truth behind the most common myths

Genetics - чт, 2018-08-09 17:00
You can grow into and out of allergies your whole life; they come in groups; women are more allergy prone... Wild ideas about allergies abound, but which should you believe?
Категории: Biology

Alien grass is making California wildfires three times as frequent

Genetics - чт, 2018-08-09 17:00
Non-native grasses such as cheatgrass are easier to ignite and can spread fires far more quickly than the native ones
Категории: Biology

Uncrackable computer chips stop malicious bugs attacking your computer

Genetics - чт, 2018-08-09 14:00
Cyberattacks target not just our phones and laptops, but hospitals, schools and power stations. A new security solution redesigns chips from the inside out
Категории: Biology

Another supervolcano in California is not as dormant as we thought

Genetics - чт, 2018-08-09 13:09
The Long Valley Caldera in east California unleashed a supervolcano eruption 760,000 years ago. Today it is quiet but it may have a few smaller eruptions left in it
Категории: Biology

Tight underwear really is linked to lower sperm counts in men

Genetics - чт, 2018-08-09 01:00
Men who wear boxer shorts have higher sperm levels than men who wear tight underwear, although the difference shouldn't usually be enough to affect fertility
Категории: Biology

Inducing labour at 39 weeks leads to fewer emergency Caesareans

Genetics - чт, 2018-08-09 00:00
It has been thought that inducing labour leads to more C-sections, but a study of over 6,100 women suggests this isn’t the case when induced at 39 weeks
Категории: Biology

Long-term all-optical interrogation of cortical neurons in awake-behaving nonhuman primates

PLOS Biology (new articles) - ср, 2018-08-08 23:00

by Niansheng Ju, Rundong Jiang, Stephen L. Macknik, Susana Martinez-Conde, Shiming Tang

Whereas optogenetic techniques have proven successful in their ability to manipulate neuronal populations—with high spatial and temporal fidelity—in species ranging from insects to rodents, significant obstacles remain in their application to nonhuman primates (NHPs). Robust optogenetics-activated behavior and long-term monitoring of target neurons have been challenging in NHPs. Here, we present a method for all-optical interrogation (AOI), integrating optical stimulation and simultaneous two-photon (2P) imaging of neuronal populations in the primary visual cortex (V1) of awake rhesus macaques. A red-shifted channel-rhodopsin transgene (ChR1/VChR1 [C1V1]) and genetically encoded calcium indicators (genetically encoded calmodulin protein [GCaMP]5 or GCaMP6s) were delivered by adeno-associated viruses (AAVs) and subsequently expressed in V1 neuronal populations for months. We achieved optogenetic stimulation using both single-photon (1P) activation of neuronal populations and 2P activation of single cells, while simultaneously recording 2P calcium imaging in awake NHPs. Optogenetic manipulations of V1 neuronal populations produced reliable artificial visual percepts. Together, our advances show the feasibility of precise and stable AOI of cortical neurons in awake NHPs, which may lead to broad applications in high-level cognition and preclinical testing studies.
Категории: Biology, Journals

‘Hey’: short messages are the best dating site strategy, study says

Genetics - ср, 2018-08-08 21:00
  An analysis of online dating has found most users hit on people who are 25 per cent more attractive than them, and that shorter messages have better reply rates
Категории: Biology

Police can now track killers using relatives’ DNA – but should they?

Genetics - ср, 2018-08-08 20:00
Genetic genealogy services are rapidly becoming a key source of forensic evidence, but do we really want the police to have access to everyone's DNA?
Категории: Biology

Ecstasy-like drugs might relieve social difficulties in autism

Genetics - ср, 2018-08-08 20:00
Mouse studies hint that social difficulties in autism might be caused by faulty serotonin signalling in the brain and can be helped with serotonin-boosting drugs
Категории: Biology

Don’t give up, we can survive even a Hothouse Earth

Genetics - ср, 2018-08-08 19:22
Bad news on the climate should lead neither to despair nor unfounded optimism. Instead, we need to roll up our sleeves and prepare for life on a drastically changing planet
Категории: Biology

The underwater drones that hunt for oil spills beneath the waves

Genetics - ср, 2018-08-08 18:30
Oil behaves strangely in water – now a combination of AI and super-expensive underwater vehicles are being used to track it. Joshua Howgego went along for the ride
Категории: Biology

US Navy wants to fire a slime cannon at boats to stop them escaping

Genetics - ср, 2018-08-08 17:42
The US Navy wants to make super-expanding weaponised slime, inspired by the hagfish,  that can trap boats in the water
Категории: Biology

Allergy explosion: They are on the rise, and here’s why

Genetics - ср, 2018-08-08 14:00
Banning nuts on planes and in schools may seem like hysteria, but there's good reason: allergies are becoming more common. And you may not realise how you're affected
Категории: Biology

California’s worst wildfire in history is now the size of Los Angeles

Genetics - ср, 2018-08-08 13:57
Firefighters are battling high winds and extreme heat as they try to slow the spread of the biggest wildfire ever recorded in California
Категории: Biology

Neutron stars bend light so much we see their front and back at once

Genetics - ср, 2018-08-08 13:36
Ultra-compact neutron stars are so dense that the light bends around from the far side, making it possible to see all sides of them simultaneously
Категории: Biology

Nitrogen fixation in a landrace of maize is supported by a mucilage-associated diazotrophic microbiota

PLOS Biology (new articles) - вт, 2018-08-07 23:00

by Allen Van Deynze, Pablo Zamora, Pierre-Marc Delaux, Cristobal Heitmann, Dhileepkumar Jayaraman, Shanmugam Rajasekar, Danielle Graham, Junko Maeda, Donald Gibson, Kevin D. Schwartz, Alison M. Berry, Srijak Bhatnagar, Guillaume Jospin, Aaron Darling, Richard Jeannotte, Javier Lopez, Bart C. Weimer, Jonathan A. Eisen, Howard-Yana Shapiro, Jean-Michel Ané, Alan B. Bennett

Plants are associated with a complex microbiota that contributes to nutrient acquisition, plant growth, and plant defense. Nitrogen-fixing microbial associations are efficient and well characterized in legumes but are limited in cereals, including maize. We studied an indigenous landrace of maize grown in nitrogen-depleted soils in the Sierra Mixe region of Oaxaca, Mexico. This landrace is characterized by the extensive development of aerial roots that secrete a carbohydrate-rich mucilage. Analysis of the mucilage microbiota indicated that it was enriched in taxa for which many known species are diazotrophic, was enriched for homologs of genes encoding nitrogenase subunits, and harbored active nitrogenase activity as assessed by acetylene reduction and 15N2 incorporation assays. Field experiments in Sierra Mixe using 15N natural abundance or 15N-enrichment assessments over 5 years indicated that atmospheric nitrogen fixation contributed 29%–82% of the nitrogen nutrition of Sierra Mixe maize.
Категории: Biology, Journals