McArthur Andrew G.

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Andrew G.

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  • Article
    A new family of giardial cysteine-rich non-VSP protein genes and a novel cyst protein
    (Public Library of Science, 2006-12) Davids, Barbara J. ; Reiner, David S. ; Birkeland, Shanda R. ; Preheim, Sarah P. ; Cipriano, Michael J. ; McArthur, Andrew G. ; Gillin, Frances D.
    Since the Giardia lamblia cyst wall is necessary for survival in the environment and host infection, we tested the hypothesis that it contains proteins other than the three known cyst wall proteins. Serial analysis of gene expression during growth and encystation revealed a gene, “HCNCp” (High Cysteine Non-variant Cyst protein), that was upregulated late in encystation, and that resembled the classic Giardia variable surface proteins (VSPs) that cover the trophozoite plasmalemma. HCNCp is 13.9% cysteine, with many “CxxC” tetrapeptide motifs and a transmembrane sequence near the C-terminus. However, HCNCp has multiple “CxC” motifs rarely found in VSPs, and does not localize to the trophozoite plasmalemma. Moreover, the HCNCp C-terminus differed from the canonical VSP signature. Full-length epitope-tagged HCNCp expressed under its own promoter was upregulated during encystation with highest expression in cysts, including 42 and 21 kDa C-terminal fragments. Tagged HCNCp targeted to the nuclear envelope in trophozoites, and co-localized with cyst proteins to encystation-specific secretory vesicles during encystation. HCNCp defined a novel trafficking pathway as it localized to the wall and body of cysts, while the cyst proteins were exclusively in the wall. Unlike VSPs, HCNCp is expressed in at least five giardial strains and four WB subclones expressing different VSPs. Bioinformatics identified 60 additional large high cysteine membrane proteins (HCMp) containing ≥20 CxxC/CxC's lacking the VSP-specific C-terminal CRGKA. HCMp were absent or rare in other model or parasite genomes, except for Tetrahymena thermophila with 30. MEME analysis classified the 61 gHCMp genes into nine groups with similar internal motifs. Our data suggest that HCNCp is a novel invariant cyst protein belonging to a new HCMp family that is abundant in the Giardia genome. HCNCp and the other HCMp provide a rich source for developing parasite-specific diagnostic reagents, vaccine candidates, and subjects for further research into Giardia biology.
  • Article
    In vitro generation of human high-density-lipoprotein-resistant Trypanosoma brucei brucei
    (American Society for Microbiology, 2006-08) Faulkner, Sara D. ; Oli, Monika W. ; Kieft, Rudo ; Cotlin, Laura F. ; Widener, Justin ; Shiflett, April M. ; Cipriano, Michael J. ; Pacocha, Sarah E. ; Birkeland, Shanda R. ; Hajduk, Stephen L. ; McArthur, Andrew G.
    The host range of African trypanosomes is influenced by innate protective molecules in the blood of primates. A subfraction of human high-density lipoprotein (HDL) containing apolipoprotein A-I, apolipoprotein L-I, and haptoglobin-related protein is toxic to Trypanosoma brucei brucei but not the human sleeping sickness parasite Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense. It is thought that T. b. rhodesiense evolved from a T. b. brucei-like ancestor and expresses a defense protein that ablates the antitrypanosomal activity of human HDL. To directly investigate this possibility, we developed an in vitro selection to generate human HDL-resistant T. b. brucei. Here we show that conversion of T. b. brucei from human HDL sensitive to resistant correlates with changes in the expression of the variant surface glycoprotein (VSG) and abolished uptake of the cytotoxic human HDLs. Complete transcriptome analysis of the HDL-susceptible and -resistant trypanosomes confirmed that VSG switching had occurred but failed to reveal the expression of other genes specifically associated with human HDL resistance, including the serum resistance-associated gene (SRA) of T. b. rhodesiense. In addition, we found that while the original active expression site was still utilized, expression of three expression site-associated genes (ESAG) was altered in the HDL-resistant trypanosomes. These findings demonstrate that resistance to human HDLs can be acquired by T. b. brucei.
  • Preprint
    Molecular evolution of the vesicle coat component βCOP in Toxoplasma gondii
    ( 2007-01) Smith, Sherri S. ; Pfluger, Stacy L. ; Hjort, Elizabeth ; McArthur, Andrew G. ; Hager, Kristin M.
    Coatomer coated (COPI) vesicles play a pivotal role for multiple membrane trafficking steps throughout the eukaryotic cell. Our focus is on βCOP, one of the most well known components of the COPI multi-protein complex. Amino acid differences in βCOP may dictate functional divergence across species during the course of evolution, especially with regards to the evolutionary pressures on obligate intracellular parasites. A bioinformatic analysis of βCOP amino acid sequences was conducted for 49 eukaryotic species. Cloning and sequence analysis of the Toxoplasma gondii βCOP homologue revealed several amino acid insertions unique to T. gondii and one C-terminal insertion that is unique to apicomplexan parasites. These findings led us to investigate the possibility that βCOP experienced functional divergence during the course of its evolution. Bayesian phylogenetic analysis revealed a tree consistent with pan eukaryote distribution and long-branch lengths were observed among the apicomplexans. Further analysis revealed that kinetoplast βCOP underwent the most amount of change, leading to perhaps an overall change of function. In comparison, T. gondii exhibited subtle yet specific amino acid changes. The amino acid substitutions did not occur in the same places as other lineages, suggesting that TgβCOP has a role specific to the apicomplexans. Our work identifies forty-eight residues that are likely to be functionally important when comparing apicomplexan, kinetoplastid, and fungal βCOP.
  • Article
    Identification and developmental expression of the full complement of Cytochrome P450 genes in Zebrafish
    (BioMed Central, 2010-11-18) Goldstone, Jared V. ; McArthur, Andrew G. ; Kubota, Akira ; Zanette, Juliano ; Parente, Thiago ; Jonsson, Maria E. ; Nelson, David R. ; Stegeman, John J.
    Increasing use of zebrafish in drug discovery and mechanistic toxicology demands knowledge of cytochrome P450 (CYP) gene regulation and function. CYP enzymes catalyze oxidative transformation leading to activation or inactivation of many endogenous and exogenous chemicals, with consequences for normal physiology and disease processes. Many CYPs potentially have roles in developmental specification, and many chemicals that cause developmental abnormalities are substrates for CYPs. Here we identify and annotate the full suite of CYP genes in zebrafish, compare these to the human CYP gene complement, and determine the expression of CYP genes during normal development. Zebrafish have a total of 94 CYP genes, distributed among 18 gene families found also in mammals. There are 32 genes in CYP families 5 to 51, most of which are direct orthologs of human CYPs that are involved in endogenous functions including synthesis or inactivation of regulatory molecules. The high degree of sequence similarity suggests conservation of enzyme activities for these CYPs, confirmed in reports for some steroidogenic enzymes (e.g. CYP19, aromatase; CYP11A, P450scc; CYP17, steroid 17a-hydroxylase), and the CYP26 retinoic acid hydroxylases. Complexity is much greater in gene families 1, 2, and 3, which include CYPs prominent in metabolism of drugs and pollutants, as well as of endogenous substrates. There are orthologous relationships for some CYP1 s and some CYP3 s between zebrafish and human. In contrast, zebrafish have 47 CYP2 genes, compared to 16 in human, with only two (CYP2R1 and CYP2U1) recognized as orthologous based on sequence. Analysis of shared synteny identified CYP2 gene clusters evolutionarily related to mammalian CYP2 s, as well as unique clusters. Transcript profiling by microarray and quantitative PCR revealed that the majority of zebrafish CYP genes are expressed in embryos, with waves of expression of different sets of genes over the course of development. Transcripts of some CYP occur also in oocytes. The results provide a foundation for the use of zebrafish as a model in toxicological, pharmacological and chemical disease research.
  • Article
    Developmental expression of the Nfe2-related factor (Nrf) transcription factor family in the zebrafish, Danio rerio
    (Public Library of Science, 2013-10-24) Williams, Larissa M. ; Timme-Laragy, Alicia R. ; Goldstone, Jared V. ; McArthur, Andrew G. ; Stegeman, John J. ; Smolowitz, Roxanna M. ; Hahn, Mark E.
    Transcription factors in the CNC-bZIP family (NFE2, NRF1, NRF2 and NRF3) regulate genes with a wide range of functions in response to both physiological and exogenous signals, including those indicating changes in cellular redox status. Given their role in helping to maintain cellular homeostasis, it is imperative to understand the expression, regulation, and function of CNC-bZIP genes during embryonic development. We explored the expression and function of six nrf genes (nfe2, nrf1a, nrf1b, nrf2a, nrf2b, and nrf3) using zebrafish embryos as a model system. Analysis by microarray and quantitative RT-PCR showed that genes in the nrf family were expressed throughout development from oocytes to larvae. The spatial expression of nrf3 suggested a role in regulating the development of the brain, brachia and pectoral fins. Knock-down by morpholino anti-sense oligonucleotides suggested that none of the genes were necessary for embryonic viability, but nfe2 was required for proper cellular organization in the pneumatic duct and subsequent swim bladder function, as well as for proper formation of the otic vesicles. nrf genes were induced by the oxidant tert-butylhydroperoxide, and some of this response was regulated through family members Nrf2a and Nrf2b. Our results provide a foundation for understanding the role of nrf genes in normal development and in regulating the response to oxidative stress in vertebrate embryos.
  • Article
    Evidence for lateral transfer of genes encoding ferredoxins, nitroreductases, NADH oxidase, and alcohol dehydrogenase 3 from anaerobic prokaryotes to Giardia lamblia and Entamoeba histolytica
    (American Society for Microbiology, 2002-04) Nixon, Julie E. J. ; Wang, Amy ; Field, Jessica ; Morrison, Hilary G. ; McArthur, Andrew G. ; Sogin, Mitchell L. ; Loftus, Brendan J. ; Samuelson, John
    Giardia lamblia and Entamoeba histolytica are amitochondriate, microaerophilic protists which use fermentation enzymes like those of bacteria to survive anaerobic conditions within the intestinal lumen. Genes encoding fermentation enzymes and related electron transport peptides (e.g., ferredoxins) in giardia organisms and amebae are hypothesized to be derived from either an ancient anaerobic eukaryote (amitochondriate fossil hypothesis), a mitochondrial endosymbiont (hydrogen hypothesis), or anaerobic bacteria (lateral transfer hypothesis). The goals here were to complete the molecular characterization of giardial and amebic fermentation enzymes and to determine the origins of the genes encoding them, when possible. A putative giardia [2Fe-2S]ferredoxin which had a hypothetical organelle-targeting sequence at its N terminus showed similarity to mitochondrial ferredoxins and the hydrogenosomal ferredoxin of Trichomonas vaginalis (another luminal protist). However, phylogenetic trees were star shaped, with weak bootstrap support, so we were unable to confirm or rule out the endosymbiotic origin of the giardia [2Fe-2S]ferredoxin gene. Putative giardial and amebic 6-kDa ferredoxins, ferredoxin-nitroreductase fusion proteins, and oxygen-insensitive nitroreductases each tentatively supported the lateral transfer hypothesis. Although there were not enough sequences to perform meaningful phylogenetic analyses, the unique common occurrence of these peptides and enzymes in giardia organisms, amebae, and the few anaerobic prokaryotes suggests the possibility of lateral transfer. In contrast, there was more robust phylogenetic evidence for the lateral transfer of G. lamblia genes encoding an NADH oxidase from a gram-positive coccus and a microbial group 3 alcohol dehydrogenase from thermoanaerobic prokaryotes. In further support of lateral transfer, the G. lamblia NADH oxidase and adh3 genes appeared to have an evolutionary history distinct from those of E. histolytica.
  • Preprint
    Protein phosphatase 2A plays a crucial role in Giardia lamblia differentiation
    ( 2006-12-06) Lauwaet, Tineke ; Davids, Barbara J. ; Torres-Escobar, Ascencion ; Birkeland, Shanda R. ; Cipriano, Michael J. ; Preheim, Sarah P. ; Palm, Daniel ; Svard, Staffan G. ; McArthur, Andrew G. ; Gillin, Frances D.
    The ability of Giardia lamblia to undergo two distinct differentiations in response to physiologic stimuli is central to its pathogenesis. The giardial cytoskeleton changes drastically during encystation and excystation. However, the signal transduction pathways mediating these transformations are poorly understood. We tested the hypothesis that PP2A, a highly conserved serine/threonine protein phosphatase, might be important in giardial differentiation. We found that in vegetatively growing trophozoites, gPP2A-C protein localizes to basal bodies/centrosomes, and to cytoskeletal structures unique to Giardia: the ventral disk, and the dense rods of the anterior, posterior-lateral, and caudal flagella. During encystation, gPP2A-C protein disappears from only the anterior flagellar dense rods. During excystation, gPP2A-C localizes to the cyst wall in excysting cysts but is not found in the wall of cysts with emerging excyzoites. Transcriptome and immunoblot analyses indicated that gPP2A-C mRNA and protein are upregulated in mature cysts and during the early stage of excystation that models passage through the host stomach. Stable expression of gPP2A-C antisense RNA did not affect vegetative growth, but strongly inhibited the formation of encystation secretory vesicles (ESV) and water-resistant cysts. Moreover, the few cysts that formed were highly defective in excystation. Thus, gPP2A-C localizes to universal cytoskeletal structures and to structures unique to Giardia. It is also important for encystation and excystation, crucial giardial transformations that entail entry into and exit from dormancy.
  • Article
    Proteins of the glycine decarboxylase complex in the Hydrogenosome of Trichomonas vaginalis
    (American Society for Microbiology, 2006-12) Mukherjee, Mandira ; Brown, Mark T. ; McArthur, Andrew G. ; Johnson, Patricia J.
    Trichomonas vaginalis is a unicellular eukaryote that lacks mitochondria and contains a specialized organelle, the hydrogenosome, involved in carbohydrate metabolism and iron-sulfur cluster assembly. We report the identification of two glycine cleavage H proteins and a dihydrolipoamide dehydrogenase (L protein) of the glycine decarboxylase complex in T. vaginalis with predicted N-terminal hydrogenosomal presequences. Immunofluorescence analyses reveal that both H and L proteins are localized in hydrogenosomes, providing the first evidence for amino acid metabolism in this organelle. All three proteins were expressed in Escherichia coli and purified to homogeneity. The experimental Km of L protein for the two H proteins were 2.6 µM and 3.7 µM, consistent with both H proteins serving as substrates of L protein. Analyses using purified hydrogenosomes showed that endogenous H proteins exist as monomers and endogenous L protein as a homodimer in their native states. Phylogenetic analyses of L proteins revealed that the T. vaginalis homologue shares a common ancestry with dihydrolipoamide dehydrogenases from the firmicute bacteria, indicating its acquisition via a horizontal gene transfer event independent of the origins of mitochondria and hydrogenosomes.
  • Article
    Long serial analysis of gene expression for gene discovery and transcriptome profiling in the widespread marine coccolithophore Emiliania huxleyi
    (American Society for Microbiology, 2006-01) Dyhrman, Sonya T. ; Haley, Sheean T. ; Birkeland, Shanda R. ; Wurch, Louie L. ; Cipriano, Michael J. ; McArthur, Andrew G.
    The abundant and widespread coccolithophore Emiliania huxleyi plays an important role in mediating CO2 exchange between the ocean and the atmosphere through its impact on marine photosynthesis and calcification. Here, we use long serial analysis of gene expression (SAGE) to identify E. huxleyi genes responsive to nitrogen (N) or phosphorus (P) starvation. Long SAGE is an elegant approach for examining quantitative and comprehensive gene expression patterns without a priori knowledge of gene sequences via the detection of 21-bp nucleotide sequence tags. E. huxleyi appears to have a robust transcriptional-level response to macronutrient deficiency, with 42 tags uniquely present or up-regulated twofold or greater in the N-starved library and 128 tags uniquely present or up-regulated twofold or greater in the P-starved library. The expression patterns of several tags were validated with reverse transcriptase PCR. Roughly 48% of these differentially expressed tags could be mapped to publicly available genomic or expressed sequence tag (EST) sequence data. For example, in the P-starved library a number of the tags mapped to genes with a role in P scavenging, including a putative phosphate-repressible permease and a putative polyphosphate synthetase. In short, the long SAGE analyses have (i) identified many new differentially regulated gene sequences, (ii) assigned regulation data to EST sequences with no database homology and unknown function, and (iii) highlighted previously uncharacterized aspects of E. huxleyi N and P physiology. To this end, our long SAGE libraries provide a new public resource for gene discovery and transcriptional analysis in this biogeochemically important marine organism.
  • Article
    Differential gene expression between fall- and spring-run Chinook salmon assessed by long serial analysis of gene expression
    (American Fisheries Society, 2008-09-15) Bernier, Jeremiah C. ; Birkeland, Shanda R. ; Cipriano, Michael J. ; McArthur, Andrew G. ; Banks, Michael A.
    Of all Pacific salmonids, Chinook salmon Oncorhynchus tshawytscha display the greatest variability in return times to freshwater. The molecular mechanisms of these differential return times have not been well described. Current methods, such as long serial analysis of gene expression (LongSAGE) and microarrays, allow gene expression to be analyzed for thousands of genes simultaneously. To investigate whether differential gene expression is observed between fall- and spring-run Chinook salmon from California's Central Valley, LongSAGE libraries were constructed. Three libraries containing between 25,512 and 29,372 sequenced tags (21 base pairs/tag) were generated using messenger RNA from the brains of adult Chinook salmon returning in fall and spring and from one ocean-caught Chinook salmon. Tags were annotated to genes using complementary DNA libraries from Atlantic salmon Salmo salar and rainbow trout O. mykiss. Differentially expressed genes, as estimated by differences in the number of sequence tags, were found in all pairwise comparisons of libraries (freshwater versus saltwater = 40 genes; fall versus spring = 11 genes; and spawning versus nonspawning = 51 genes). The gene for ependymin, an extracellular glycoprotein involved in behavioral plasticity in fish, exhibited the most differential expression among the three groupings. Reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction analysis verified the differential expression of ependymin between the fall- and spring-run samples. These LongSAGE libraries, the first reported for Chinook salmon, provide a window of the transcriptional changes during Chinook salmon return migration to freshwater and spawning and increase the amount of expressed sequence data.
  • Article
    The cytochrome P450 (CYP) superfamily in cnidarians
    (Nature Research, 2021-05-10) Pankov, Kirill V. ; McArthur, Andrew G. ; Gold, David A. ; Nelson, David R. ; Goldstone, Jared V. ; Wilson, Joanne
    The cytochrome P450 (CYP) superfamily is a diverse and important enzyme family, playing a central role in chemical defense and in synthesis and metabolism of major biological signaling molecules. The CYPomes of four cnidarian genomes (Hydra vulgaris, Acropora digitifera, Aurelia aurita, Nematostella vectensis) were annotated; phylogenetic analyses determined the evolutionary relationships amongst the sequences and with existing metazoan CYPs. 155 functional CYPs were identified and 90 fragments. Genes were from 24 new CYP families and several new subfamilies; genes were in 9 of the 12 established metazoan CYP clans. All species had large expansions of clan 2 diversity, with H. vulgaris having reduced diversity for both clan 3 and mitochondrial clan. We identified potential candidates for xenobiotic metabolism and steroidogenesis. That each genome contained multiple, novel CYP families may reflect the large evolutionary distance within the cnidarians, unique physiology in the cnidarian classes, and/or different ecology of the individual species.
  • Preprint
    Transcriptome analyses of the Giardia lamblia life cycle
    ( 2010-06-04) Birkeland, Shanda R. ; Preheim, Sarah P. ; Davids, Barbara J. ; Cipriano, Michael J. ; Palm, Daniel ; Reiner, David S. ; Svard, Staffan G. ; Gillin, Frances D. ; McArthur, Andrew G.
    We quantified mRNA abundance from 10 stages in the Giardia lamblia life cycle in vitro using Serial Analysis of Gene Expression (SAGE). 163 abundant transcripts were expressed constitutively. 71 transcripts were upregulated specifically during excystation and 42 during encystation. Nonetheless, the transcriptomes of cysts and trophozoites showed major differences. SAGE detected co-expressed clusters of 284 transcripts differentially expressed in cysts and excyzoites and 287 transcripts in vegetative trophozoites and encysting cells. All clusters included known genes and pathways as well as proteins unique to Giardia or diplomonads. SAGE analysis of the Giardia life cycle identified a number of kinases, phosphatases, and DNA replication proteins involved in excystation and encystation, which could be important for examining the roles of cell signaling in giardial differentiation. Overall, these data pave the way for directed gene discovery and a better understanding of the biology of Giardia lamblia.
  • Article
    The transcriptional response to oxidative stress during vertebrate development : effects of tert-butylhydroquinone and 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin
    (Public Library of Science, 2014-11-17) Hahn, Mark E. ; McArthur, Andrew G. ; Karchner, Sibel I. ; Franks, Diana G. ; Jenny, Matthew J. ; Timme-Laragy, Alicia R. ; Stegeman, John J. ; Woodin, Bruce R. ; Cipriano, Michael J. ; Linney, Elwood A.
    Oxidative stress is an important mechanism of chemical toxicity, contributing to teratogenesis and to cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases. Developing animals may be especially sensitive to chemicals causing oxidative stress. The developmental expression and inducibility of anti-oxidant defenses through activation of NF-E2-related factor 2 (NRF2) affect susceptibility to oxidants, but the embryonic response to oxidants is not well understood. To assess the response to chemically mediated oxidative stress and how it may vary during development, zebrafish embryos, eleutheroembryos, or larvae at 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 days post fertilization (dpf) were exposed to DMSO (0.1%), tert-butylhydroquinone (tBHQ; 10 µM) or 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD; 2 nM) for 6 hr. Transcript abundance was assessed by real-time qRT-PCR and microarray. qRT-PCR showed strong (4- to 5-fold) induction of gstp1 by tBHQ as early as 1 dpf. tBHQ also induced gclc (2 dpf), but not sod1, nqo1, or cyp1a. TCDD induced cyp1a but none of the other genes. Microarray analysis showed that 1477 probes were significantly different among the DMSO-, tBHQ-, and TCDD-treated eleutheroembryos at 4 dpf. There was substantial overlap between genes induced in developing zebrafish and a set of marker genes induced by oxidative stress in mammals. Genes induced by tBHQ in 4-dpf zebrafish included those involved in glutathione synthesis and utilization, signal transduction, and DNA damage/stress response. The strong induction of hsp70 determined by microarray was confirmed by qRT-PCR and by use of transgenic zebrafish expressing enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) under control of the hsp70 promoter. Genes strongly down-regulated by tBHQ included mitfa, providing a molecular explanation for the loss of pigmentation in tBHQ-exposed embryos. These data show that zebrafish embryos are responsive to oxidative stress as early as 1 dpf, that responsiveness varies with development in a gene-specific manner, and that the oxidative stress response is substantially conserved in vertebrate animals.
  • Article
    Evolution of eukaryotic transcription : insights from the genome of Giardia lamblia
    (Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press, 2004) Best, Aaron A. ; Morrison, Hilary G. ; McArthur, Andrew G. ; Sogin, Mitchell L. ; Olsen, Gary J.
    The Giardia lamblia genome sequencing project affords us a unique opportunity to conduct comparative analyses of core cellular systems between early and late-diverging eukaryotes on a genome-wide scale. We report a survey to identify canonical transcription components in Giardia, focusing on RNA polymerase (RNAP) subunits and transcription-initiation factors. Our survey revealed that Giardia contains homologs to 21 of the 28 polypeptides comprising eukaryal RNAPI, RNAPII, and RNAPIII; six of the seven RNAP subunits without giardial homologs are polymerase specific. Components of only four of the 12 general transcription initiation factors have giardial homologs. Surprisingly, giardial TATA-binding protein (TBP) is highly divergent with respect to archaeal and higher eukaryotic TBPs, and a giardial homolog of transcription factor IIB was not identified. We conclude that Giardia represents a transition during the evolution of eukaryal transcription systems, exhibiting a relatively complete set of RNAP subunits and a rudimentary basal initiation apparatus for each transcription system. Most class-specific RNAP subunits and basal initiation factors appear to have evolved after the divergence of Giardia from the main eukaryotic line of descent. Consequently, Giardia is predicted to be unique in many aspects of transcription initiation with respect to paradigms derived from studies in crown eukaryotes.